Felt like writing something...Thanks to NinjaSheik who wrote me a lovely review asking me to write another Paula/Lawrence fic. Cheers :)
Pairings: Paula/Lawrence Crock, Jade/Roy (Hints), Artemis/Wally (Hints)
A/N: Set between Seasons 1 and 2.
Thanks to silent reviewers.
Disclaimer: I do not own Young Justice or its characters.
Paula isn't sure she'll ever get used to being on the other side of the glass. She was behind it for six years. It's weird to be on the outside looking in or more specifically looking at her husband as he lounges in his chair stark orange uniform a terrible contrast to his pale skin, blonde hair, and piercing blue eyes. She never thought she'd actually want to see him in his ridiculous Sportsmaster getup again. But so much has changed in the last few months that she can almost believe anything at this point.
Some of the prisoners that pass by recognize her. Their reactions are either one of two things. Some laugh. They seem to find immense pleasure in the irony that she is now living the "good" life while her husband rots in prison. They clearly are not aware that she lives on welfare in one of the poorest parts of Gotham and works a simple secretarial job for minimum wage. If it wasn't for certain generous benefactors she would be serious trouble. Living on the straight and narrow isn't as lucrative as crime had been. Then there's the second group, the ones she has history with. They respect her since they know she might be immobilized from the waist down but she is more than capable of disemboweling them with a knife. She did some things she wasn't proud of when she was in prison, it was for survival, but rumors still persist.
She also can't believe she's here.
Lawrence never once during her six years of incarceration came to visit her, neither did her daughters so the fact that she has gone out her way to see her husband is startling. The guards give her contemptuous, suspicious looks whenever she arrives and leaves as if she doesn't belong out there, with sunlight and fresh air. She's often wondered how these criminal caretakers cope, the horror they must feel when they recognize a felon on the street but don't have the power to stop him. They lack the naivety the general populace is blessed. The average man has no idea which criminals roam amongst them.
As usual Lawrence is all ease and confidence as if the entire thing is a joke, a vacation and it almost is. In prison you get three straight meals a day, a bed, a room to yourself and honestly nothing to do for hours on end. For him it's just a temporary place to bide his time. It's when you're outside the Big House that survival matters when you don't know where your next meal is coming from when you don't know if your partner will sell you under the bus or not. There are no guarantees in the real world.
"So," begins Sportsmaster, "Baby girl's been writing to me." This catches Paula's attention and she raises an eyebrow inquisitively at the suggestion. Artemis had sent her letters when she had been in prison, long beautiful letters, but she hardly expected her beloved daughter to shower the father she loathed with such a courtesy.
Paula honestly hates that her husband knows her so well. He's piqued her curiosity and curiosity always kills the cat. "Not so much letters," he continues rummaging around in his pockets before extracting a piece of paper no bigger then a post-it, slamming against the window.
It has the word ASSHOLE written across it in Artemis's curvy, slanted hand writing.
"You should have seen the first couple," he comments pulling it back and fondly running his fingers across it. "Her language could peel paint. I'm so proud."
Paula shakes her head trying to stop the smirk quirking at the corners of her lips; she had always enjoyed his rather perverse sense of humor. Being married to a criminal was actually probably more taxing on a relationship then if two ordinary people were wed. The reality is that when you marry someone like Lawrence Crock and you know what's he capable of, there's an inherent fear you will end up like the last girl he slept with to get intel on a drug deal - dead in a gutter. He said he loved her too. Love doesn't hold any weight in their line of work.
Paula looks down at her crossed hands squinting at the ring on her finger. She found another wrinkle this morning and Artemis phoned her from California last night and Jade came back to the apartment three months pregnant. Her older daughter has been doing that a lot lately, coming and going and staying but whenever Artemis comes home she disappears. Paula wasn't even sure she was pregnant till Jade told her last night. She knows from personal experience telling a ninja she's getting fat does not end well for the recipient of that woman's wrath. Paula sighs. She won't tell Artemis not because she doesn't want to but Jade will leave again and the life growing in her eldest daughter is more important at the moment. She feels old already.
"Jade is pregnant." She's married to him. Jade's his daughter. He has a right to know. He'll find it out regardless.
"I'm getting real tired of these redheads," states Sportsmaster without skipping a beat. "Our daughters didn't get their taste in men from me."
Paula can't help it she chuckles lightly and pushes away from the glass as she hears a guard approaching to escort her out.
"I won't be in here much longer," he says cracking his knuckles. Paula shrugs. It's a promise. She knew that. "Nothing is going to happen to our kids."
Paula blinks. It's the first time he's said something like that and his posture is serious and rigid and she remembers why she loves this man. He offered her the one thing, the only thing, of value to a criminal who was constantly on the lam and fearing for their life, not sure if their partner would betray them today or tomorrow.
"I trust you," responds the ex-Huntress quietly.
Lawrence puts on his infuriating know it all smile, that has always driven her insane. "Trust'ya too."