So… I finished my homework and I am kinda bored. Though you probably don't care, I bought a couple of new songs on my ipod. Unfortunately I can't listen to them because my Maine Coon, Quinn, is playing with my headphones.
I honestly have no clue where this one shot came from, I hope you like it though.
Disclaimer: If I owned Young Justice Jason Todd would be up on the screen kicking ass.
Robin's face was buried in his paperback copy of The Outsiders he had been issued by his English teacher Mr. White. The book was absolutely amazing, he couldn't take his eyes off the black print that was typed on the page. It was like the book was made just for him. Receiving a book in English class that was actually readable was very rare. The only other time he remembered liking a book he was assigned was when he was in fourth grade when his teach, who's name was long lost to him, gave them a copy of Bridge to Terabithia.
He was sitting at the kitchen counter of Mount Justice. Dressed in a worn pair of jeans and a green t-shirt with a black hoodie over it, a pair of sunglasses rested on the bridge of his nose for Batman had forbidden him to release his identity. The world around him was nothing more than a blur in the corner of his eyes, the image of Ponyboy, the main character of his book, being dunked in a fountain was the only thing he saw as the words created a picture in his brain.
Conner was sitting in the living area watching the snow on the screen bounce around like a pinball. Kaldur was seated on the edge of the couch reading Moby Dick for what must have been the millionth time. Artemis and Wally occupied the rest of the couch, the two were fighting over something that even they couldn't remember what it was. A pointless argument to take up time. It was a normal after school seen.
"Who is your hero?"
Robin's eyes flicked from the words on the page to the green Martian standing before him. M'gann was dressed in her normal attire, a white blouse and a pink sweater. A piece of paper was clutched in one hand and she held a pencil in the other. Her hazel eyes shone with curiosity. Marking his page Robin gently set down his book and faced the girl. A smile had spread across her face and she was practically jumping with excitement.
"Batman," he said without hesitation.
Wally turned his attention away from Artemis and stared at the raven haired boy. "You can't pick your mentor," he scoffed. "It's sort of an obligation."
Robin ignored him. "What brought this up Miss M?"
She shrugged. "It was a question on my homework paper, a good question. I just wanted to know who all of your heroes are."
"So, Batman is not an option?"
"No!" Wally screeched. "You can say Flash, Supes, Green Arrow, anyone but Batman! It can't be your mentor!"
"If Batman is his hero, then so be it." Artemis sneered. "Just let the kid pick,"
"But it's an obligation," the speedster retorted. "We all know that Rob looks up to Bats, just like we know you look up to Green Arrow and I look up to Flash."
M'gann nodded. "Wally is right, Batman is the obvious answer."
The Boy Wonder sighed. If Batman couldn't be his hero, then who was? Batman was his savior, everything he aspired to be in life. He could always say Bruce Wayne, but he couldn't trust Wally's big mouth not to release there identities, he needed to think outside of the box. There were so many influential people and historical figures to pick from. The question was nearly impossible to answer. Babs wouldn't be a good answer because Artemis would catch on.
A cherry blossom red swept over his face as an answer came to mind. He cast his eyes downward and mumbled it so low that not even Superboy could hear him. A wicked grin stretched across Wally's face, this was going to be good.
"Didn't catch that Rob."
"I said: the tenth Doctor," Robin repeated, snapping his head up to glare at the redhead.
"You mean… Like The Doctor, from Doctor Who?"
"No, from Grey's Anatomy," he snapped.
Laughter burst from the speedster's mouth, he could not believe that Robin, of all people was a Whovian. Even Artemis was trying to hold back giggles, she had a hand slapped over her mouth and tears in her eyes, it was just so hard not to laugh. They were both unfazed by the Robin glare that could not even compare to the Bat glare. Kaldur, M'gann, and Conner all stared at the three questioningly. Was the Doctor a new hero they didn't know about?
"What's Doctor Who?" M'gann asked slowly.
"A geeky sci-fi show about a time traveling alien who effs up history," Artemis said.
"He doesn't eff up history!" Robin exploded. "If he never would have intervened the world probably wouldn't exist!"
"Whoa, call down Rob," Wally said raising his hands. "Hey sweet cheeks, who did you put down as your hero?"
M'gann looked at her paper. "Harriet Tubman, I love how she risked her freedom to lead all of those slaves into a new and better life. It reminds me of Mars, and this mistreatment of White Martians."
"That is a good answer." Kaldur acknowledged.
M'gann floated over to Superboy who had turned his attention back to the snow filled screen, apparently uninterested in what they were saying. She perched herself on the arm rest of the chair and held her homework paper out to him. Conner stared blankly at it for a moment, before blinking and gazing up at his girlfriend. All eyes were on the couple, they were all interested to know who the boy of steel considered to be a hero. They defiantly knew it was not going to be Superman.
"Who is your hero, Kon?" M'gann asked softly.
He was silent for a moment. "I have more that one,"
Artemis was leaning so far off the couch that she was ready to fall off. Conner had peeled his eyes away from Miss Martian and was again staring at the fuzzy TV. She wanted to scream and yell at him to get on with it. Her patience was almost as bad as Wally's. Robin had climbed down from the high stool at the counter and had squished himself between Wally and Artemis, he fidgeted and pressed his hand between his knees to keep himself from lashing out and shaking Conner until he had brain damage.
"Who are they?" Artemis whispered.
Conner's eyes brightened. "Aqualad, Kid Flash, and Robin."
A smile made it's way onto the Kryptonian's face and he felt a single salty tear form in the corner of his eye. The three hero's were having trouble not jumping up from their seats and enveloping the clone in a hug. It touched them deeply that Conner truly appreciated what they had done for him.
"What about you, Baywatch?" Artemis questioned. "Who's your hero?"
"I only answer to hotties."
Artemis's face turned beat red. "Just answer the stinking question."
He rolled his eyes. "That's easy, George Washington Carver,"
"Who-?" Kaldur began.
"The guy who invented peanut butter," Robin filled in.
Kaldur shook his head and chuckled. He should have known that it would be food related. Truth be told he was surprised that he hadn't said Wendy, or the Burger King, or even Ronald McDonald. Miss Martian turned to him and he had his answer ready. It didn't take much thought.
"My best friend, Garth, from Atlantis." He answered before she could even ask.
Artemis had been thinking about her answer since M'gann had asked Robin, and she still did not have an answer. It wasn't like she could pick either of her parents as a hero, because they most defiantly weren't. She couldn't even pick her sister. The fact of the matter was that her life was full of disappointment and lies. It was hard to pick a hero when you've been surrounded by villains. She couldn't and wouldn't pick Ollie, first off because he was her mentor, and second because he was a drunk asshole most of the time.
"Who is your hero, Artemis?"
The words had slipped out of her mouth before she had even had a chance to think about them. She hardly knew the kid! They had only spoken at school from time to time and from what she had gathered he was a nerdling. Captain of the Mathletes, winner of the annual spelling bee, and just over all a grade A student. Almost a goody two shoes. Bette Caine wasn't found of him, but there was something familiar about the boy that pulled Artemis to him. Not in a romantic way, but almost as if he were her long lost brother, or someone she had met in another life. Dick Grayson was a hero if she ever saw one.
Robin and Wally exchanged an unsure glance, they were walking on a thin line that gave them no elbow room. Tilt a little either direction and they would tumble off the edge. Artemis had spoken Robin's identity, but no one knew it except Wally. Robin pressed his lips into a thin line, his mind flashing back to the incident only forty eight hours prior. He knew why she thought he was a hero.
"Who is that?" Conner asked.
"A snooty rich kid from Gotham," Robin said quickly. "Batman and I have saved his sorry butt a bunch of times."
"He's a hero." Artemis pressed. "He saved my life."
Wally's jaw fell open. "What?"
"Well, I go to a school for kids who come from money…" Artemis began.
Forty-eight hours earlier
Artemis walked out of the bathroom stall and smoothed out her too short skirt. Turning on the faucet to the sink she dipped her hands under the lukewarm water and lathered her them with the scentless soap that the school provided for them. Gazing into the mirror she flattened her flyaways with he wet hands. A flash of black caught her eye and she turned around to see a short skinny kid with black hair and blue eyes grinning at her.
"Fancy meeting you here," he said.
"What the hell are you doing here!?" she screeched. "This is the girls restroom! Get out you perverted little freak!"
Dick gave a creepy cackle before leaving. Artemis glared at her reflection in the mirror. Every day, every stinking day that happened. She always used the restroom before going to lunch and he was always there waiting for her. Changing up her schedule would be a good idea, but her school life wasn't that flexible. Grumbling she picked up her books from the shelf that sat next to the door and headed for lunch.
The cafeteria was full by the time she got there. Amongst the jabbering mass of people she saw a hand raised in the air and she quickly made her way towards it. Bette had saved her a seat. Next to Bette sat Barbara Gordon and next to Barbara sat Dick Grayson. Groaning Artemis reluctantly took her spot and tried to ignore Dick as he spoke with the two girls about his most recent science test, or whatever. She really didn't care.
Suddenly a scream pierced the air and everyone around them ducked their heads down. Two gunmen had entered the cafeteria and were waving there automatics around. They were both big and had deeply tanned skin. One had a mo-hawk and the other was bald. Tweedle Dee fired to rounds in the air and a wave of panic shot through the crowd, he sneered at all of the students and looked out at them, trying to determine which was the most valuable.
"My dad is loaded," Dick bragged loudly as if he hadn't noticed the big scary men with guns.
Tweedle Dum gazed at him for a moment before pushing kids out of the way to get to the billionaires adopted son. He seized him by the collar of his shirt and forced his gun to the boy's head. Artemis stared at Dick opened mouthed as he gave her a little shrug. How could he be so stupid? He had just sentenced himself to death! The gunmen studied Barbara for a second before nodding his head towards her.
"This the commissioner's daughter, Paul?"
Paul nodded. "I think so,"
Artemis met Dick's blue eyes, she expected to see them filled with regret. But instead they were pleading with her. Pleading for what exactly? A strange sense of protectiveness swept through her as she watched the man drop Dick on the ground and bind his hands behind his back. She gritted her teeth, why was she feeling protective over the little creep? She could hardly stand him. But his eyes, his eyes were calling out to her. As Tweedle Dum made a move for Barbara, the blonde jumped to her feet.
"How dare you think this carrot top is me!" Artemis roared. "I know my dad likes to keep me on the down low to protect me, but come on, she doesn't even look like me!"
Tweedle Dum gave Paul an unsure look before grabbing Artemis's arm. Her defensive instincts took over and she kicked him in the knee which did very little. He slammed the butt of his gun into her face. She felt her lip split open and blood squirt out. Yeah, it felt nice. Dropping to the ground next to Dick she cooperated as he man forced her onto her stomach and tied her hands tightly behind her back. Sitting up she saw Dick give her a thankful nod, but she ignored it.
Paul waltzed over to the second gunman and observed the two main hostages. Artemis was surprised that no other kids had given themselves up in a heart beat like she and Dick had. Wimps. What's a couple of burly men with big guns? She bit down on her lip as Paul kicked her in the stomach. Dick lurched forward and head butted him in the groin, a tasteless, yet effective move for a kid who had absolutely no fighting backround. The man let out a strangled scream and grabbed his manly parts before kicking Dick in the face.
Dick tipped over backwards and curled into himself, his eyes were tightly shut he was trying to play it brave in front of Artemis. Tweedle Dum pulled them both to their feet and pushed them forward, keeping his gun on Dick, who seemed to pose the biggest threat. Paul tangled his hand into Artemis's long blonde hair and pushed her in front of him. At the edge of the cafeteria he waved his gun for all to see and had his back against the door.
"You may all go," he said. "tell Wayne and Gordon that I want a million for each of 'em."
The kids all rushed out of the door opposite where the gunmen held Dick and Artemis hostage. Silently the four rushed out of the chaotic room and into the empty south hallway. Dick wrapped his leg around Tweedle Dum's ankle and swept his feet out from under him. A gunshot went off and a hole was blown into the ceiling. Artemis threw her body backwards and flipped over Paul and landing on his shoulders. A clump of her hair was still clutched in his hand and tears leaked from her eyes as her scalp throbbed. She pushed his body downward as she shot herself upward. Paul stumbled forward a few steps before turning to the girl who was now crouched before him.
Her eyes shot to Dick when he cried out, giving Paul the time to pin her to the ground. Dick was a few feet away with his face pressed to the floor and the back of his head bleeding. His eyes were unfocused and he seemed dazed. Artemis could see a bit of blood on the butt of Tweedle Dum's gun. She growled and tried to get up, but Paul was too heavy and she couldn't move. There was a sharp intake of breath and the big guy rolled off of her.
"It's the Bat!" Tweedle Dum hollered.
Artemis's eyes searched the hallway, but she could not find anyone other than the gunmen and Dick's prone form. Of course she couldn't, he was the Batman! The men were looking around blankly, she took that as an advantage and quickly crawled to Dick. Grabbing him by the back of his shirt she drug him over to the lockers and pressed his small body against them. His head snapped up and his eyes met hers.
They watched in awe as Batman dropped from the ceiling and took out Paul in on quick motion. The man's tip over like a tree. She would have yelled "Timber!" if he hadn't been falling right towards her. Dick yanked her out of the way at the last second and she eyed him suspiciously, how had he untied the ropes? Artemis focused her attention back onto the fight. Batman threw a bat-a-rang at Tweedle Dum and he easily deflected it with his gun. Raising the weapon he aimed it point blank at the Dark Knight's chest and moved backwards slowly.
Before Artemis knew what was going on Dick had positioned himself on all fours behind the gunmen, who tripped over him, causing yet another bullet whole in the ceiling. The boy scrambled out of the way as Batman handcuffed the criminals. Artemis wanted to say something, but knew it could compromise her identity, so she merely pulled Dick away from the scene. Much to her surprise he untied her hands and wrapped his arms around her in a tight hug. When they looked back the Batman was already gone.
The two stood up and leaned on each other for support as they made their way to the front door. Stepping into the sunlight a million cameras flashed in there faces and a dozen news reporters shoved microphones at them, each talking so fast that they couldn't understand what they were saying. Commissioner Gordon appeared out of nowhere and swept the two teenagers to an ambulance waiting for them. The medics cleaned their cuts and bruises as they waited for whatever was to come next.
"We make a good team." Dick said finally.
She nodded in agreement. "Just because we kicked ass together doesn't mean we are friends."
"If I leave you alone in the bathroom can we be friends?"
A limo rolled up and Bruce Wayne emerged. He made his way towards his adopted son and knelt before him. Placing his hands on the boy's shoulders he gave him a stern look. Artemis inched away, but Bruce grabbed her wrist before she could get very far.
"Are both of you ok?"
"Dick what were you thinking?" Bruce demanded.
"I was thinking that I've been held hostage more times than anyone in this school, I know how to stay calm."
Bruce sighed. "But what if something happened to you?"
"Batman always comes to save me." Dick deadpanned.
The man sighed and turned her attention to Artemis. She flinched under his gaze slightly and turned her face away. This was the man that gave her a scholarship to the academy. He most defiantly knew who she was. Picking at a lose thread on her shirt she gave Dick a n unsure look before facing Bruce.
"I called your mother," Bruce said. "Now, what happened in there."
She shrugged. "I pretended to be Barbara Gordon,"
His eyes narrowed. "Did Dick talk you into this?"
"My actions are of my own chosing,"
"You are both the thickest, most idiotic, bravest kids I have ever seen."
Forty-eight hours later
"So this boy, whom you hardly knew, just out of no where stood up and saved you?" Kaldur questioned.
Artemis nodded. "Wearing a uniform doesn't make you a hero, being selfless and brave does." She paused. "I really hop he stops following me into the bathroom though, it's starting to creep me out."
"Oh, he won't" Robin muttered under his breath.
Wally laughed. "She's going to kick the shit out of you,"
Review please! I worked on this while my dad was yelling at the TV screen, he still doesn't understand that the football players can't hear him!