I'm in such a state of sadness with Zerith and SpitFire feels so I decided to use that to write angst. Wally West is my favorite character of life and so writing about him was the logical choice. Then I happened upon the latest YJ anon meme prompt and this came up. I'll be honest, most of what I wrote was a blur to me and was fueled by emotions and emotional songs from my ITunes.
Disclaimer: I don't own Young Justice or any of the characters involved for they are owned by DC and WB. If I did, season 3 would already be in production and I'd be getting ready to show commercials for its return.
Extra Note: Before I begin I just wanted to let my readers know that I am in favor of SMGO and that we need to help raise enough pledges to show WB that we will do whatever it takes to get YJ back on the air. It doesn't matter that it's a cartoon, or an animated show, it's still a very important part of our lives. Animation is just a form of media and it doesn't represent how good or bad a show is. This show is just as amazing, if not more, than other shows airing at the moment, animated or not.
The Team cowered at the glares they were receiving from the Dark Knight and his protégé. The coldness the two intimidating figures were exhibiting was startling to say the least, especially since the Dark Knight was usually a stoic and detached person. But their reactions were nothing compared to the reaction the Flash had the moment he heard what had happened to his beloved nephew.
Kid Flash's—no, Wally's—mentor hadn't left his side since the young teen had collapsed in front of everyone in exhaustion a few hours ago. His usual jovial personality was gone and all that was left was a broken version of his former self. How could he have left Wally behind in the care of the Team so soon? He had only gotten his powers a couple of months back and was still getting used to the hang of things.
Angry at the team. Angry at Wally's parents. But most of all he was angry at himself for not noticing how things had been for Wally at home. He always knew that Wally's father was a strict man but he never would've thought that he would do something like this! He should've seen the signs of abuse beforehand; he was a forensic scientist for crying out loud. He's witnessed child abuse many times in his career so he should've seen the signs! But he never would've guessed that something so vile and repulsive would've happened to someone so close to him.
Barry hits the table with such force its legs nearly give out. But it does little to alleviate his rage.
I can't believe it took something like this for me to figure it out! He clenches his teeth in rage.
When Wally had been admitted into the Med Bay they had taken the suit off of Wally's pale and nutrient deprived body and what they saw made them widen their eyes in shock. Dark purple bruises littered Wally's torso and back as well as pale white scars at his ribcage and at his stomach. As they looked closer they could see the outlines of handprints on Wally's arms, legs, and, more alarmingly, one around his neck.
Normally such injuries on a speedster would heal within a day or two, but since Wally had been starving himself his accelerated healing wasn't kicking in. The pain and starvation Wally must've felt in his current condition was too hard for him to handle and so the moment that Barry, Bruce, and Dick returned he buckled down in exhaustion and finally drifted into unconsciousness.
"Come on, Kid. Please wake up." Barry pleaded while stroking Wally's hair. He looked so peaceful lying down on the cot, unaware of all the commotion that was going on in the world around him. His chest rose and fell softly as nutrients were being pumped into his body.
"Don't worry, you'll never go back to that place again. You'll move in with me and Iris and we'll get this thing settled in court. You'll be safe, I promise." Tears prickled Barry's eyes as he kept the rhythmic stroking of his boy's hair.
Almost as if understanding his uncle's words, Wally's mouth curved up in a slight smile as he slept.
Robin couldn't believe that his teammates, his friends, hadn't noticed just how much Wally was suffering. He had only been gone a week but for Wally it must've been an eternity. Just how long had Wally been starving himself. Okay, so technically Wally had been eating, but because of his hyper accelerated metabolism, the amount the team described wasn't nearly enough to count as a simple snack for a toddler.
Robin was disappointed at the fact that the others knew that Wally was eating less and didn't do anything about it. They say they didn't understand why eating a single portion was so bad, that they ate just the same amount, but that's the problem right there. Wally wasn't like the others when it came to his body. They think that Wally can just run fast and that was it. What they didn't know was that it wasn't only that he could run fast but that his body worked itself faster than that of a normal human being. His heart beats faster than a grown adult male's heart beat and his body breaks down all the food he eats at an alarming rate. The energy that's absorbed by the broken down food is used in a matter of minutes. That's why he needs to eat as much as he does; if he doesn't, then his body uses up all the energy it needs to keep working and it begins to shut down.
Sunken cheeks. That's the first thing Robin noticed when he saw his best friend. Wally looked like a living corpse, his face hollow and his eyes glossy. The bags under his eyes showed lack of sleep and the swaying of his movements showed that he was on his last
"KF!" Robin yelled as he ran over to Wally, who couldn't keep himself stable any longer and had begun to fall. Luckily Robin was able to make it in time and stopped his friend's descent to the hard and unrelenting metal ground.
As he kept his friend up, Robin finally noticed just how light the older teen felt. He widened his eyes as he realized that the reason why he hadn't noticed how skinny his friend was immediately was because of his suit. Wally's suit had been designed by the Flash with extra padding and protection so that Wally will be safe from any form of damage that could be dealt to him while running—either from an enemy or as a result of Wally's own human cannon ball like way of fighting. Because of all the padding no one could tell just how skinny and light Wally had become, not until it was too late, anyway.
Robin gently maneuvered Wally to the ground just as the rest of the Team gathered around their unconscious teammate. All of them were in shock at the fact that the red and yellow teen had suddenly passed out and were fearfully asking questions and yelling out his name. This was not helping Robin's concentration, though.
"Someone give me some food, now!" Robin yelled as he tried to get Wally to wake up. Everyone was confused at the request.
"Robin, I hardly believe that this is the proper time to eat." Kaldur said.
"It is when you are a speedster with a hyper accelerated metabolism. I've seen this before, Kal. He's suffering from heavy malnutrition and if we don't get any food into him soon he's going not going to make it."
"But he just ate a plate of food an hour ago!" Artemis exclaimed. This caused Robin's eyes to widen before he turned his attention to her.
"How much did you say he ate?" Robin asked bewildered.
"He ate a plate of mashed potatoes, rice, and chicken. Just like the rest of us." Artemis said, not really understanding what the big deal was.
"Is that all he ate?" Robin asked as he looked through his various belt pockets, becoming extremely exasperated when he couldn't find what he was looking for.
"Yeah…" Artemis hesitated when she saw Robin's agitated state.
Robin cursed under his breath as his search load doubled. He finally reached his last compartment when he remembered that Wally kept a granola bar or two inside of his wrist compartment. It had been another innovative idea by the overprotective Flash, with a little help from Iris West-Allen.
Opening the compartment, Robin sighed in relief at the two granola bars that were placed inside. They seemed kind of squished, and a little past the expiration date, but they were still edible. And that's all that mattered at the moment.
Pinching one of Wally's pressure points has him opening his mouth without his consent. The moment that his mouth opened, Dick takes the newly opened granola bar and stuffs it in, closing Kid Flash's mouth to get him to chew.
"What. Happened?" Batman asked in his commanding tell-me-now-or-suffer-the-consequences voice.
It was Kaldur that answered. "We are trying to figure it out. Kid Flash suddenly fell unconscious the minute Robin entered the living area. Robin believes that he is suffering from malnutrition and is trying to get him to eat one of his emergency granola bars."
Batman narrows his eyes before walking over to Robin and Kid Flash. Kneeling, Batman speaks. "How much did he have to eat?" He whispers to his protégé.
"Only one plate!" Robin yells exasperatedly while still trying Wally to eat the dang granola bar.
Nodding, Batman stands up. "We're going to need to get him to the med bay to pump him with nutrients. I will contact the Flash and inform him of what happened."
Batman puts his finger to the com link in his ear. "Batman to Flash."
"Kind of busy here, Bats." Explosive sounds could be heard in the background.
"Something's happened and I thought you should know." Batman relayed.
"Well, can it wait? Heat Wave and Captain Cold are terrorizing Central at the moment and I just got back from that week long intergalactic assignment and—"
"It's Kid Flash." Batman said.
"…" Flash didn't respond but a man's yell and a crunching noise could be heard in the background. Two seconds later, the Cave's
Recognized: Flash 04.
"What happened to Wally? Is he okay? Where is he—?" Flash stopped as he saw his nephew unconscious on the ground, a half-eaten granola bar being pushed down his mouth.
"Kid? Wally? Come on, wake up." Flash's worried voice said. As time passed he got even more nervous. Checking Wally's pulse, his eyes widened and the next thing everyone knew a blur of red disappeared down the hallway, Wally now missing from his previous spot.
Not even three seconds passed before the Flash sped back to Batman's side. He then narrowed his eyes as he demanded someone to explain to him why his sidekick had passed out due to starvation.
The Team members, sans Robin, all gulped at the terrifying look of rage coming from the usually laid back and happy Leaguer. M'Gann gasped and held her head at feeling such waves of emotion and nearly fell down herself. Seeing that Conner was about to comfort her, M'Gann expanded the toughness of her mental shield and gave her boyfriend a comforting smile. Lately M'Gann had been able to keep emotions and mental projections from other people in check but the Flash's sudden emotional influx had been too much for her to handle.
Everyone turned to Kaldur, hoping the level headed leader would be able to explain things to the others, like he had done with Batman. But even he seemed slightly bothered by the way things were progressing, if the beads of sweat on his forehead were anything to go by. Clearing his throat, Kaldur composed himself and began to speak.
As he relayed the information, the red-covered mentor's eyes narrowed even more, if that was possible.
"Any idea why my partner suddenly decides to stop eating the necessary amount of food he needs to survive?" Flash's voice was challenging, almost as his last vestige of control was about to snap and any little bit of bad news would cause him to go into a livid state.
The Team bent their heads down in shame.
Before Flash could do anything, Batman placed his hand on the older Leaguer's shoulder.
"Now is not the time to lose your control, Flash. Kid Flash in a bad state and he needs to be our top priority." At Flash's hesitant look, Batman continued. "Don't worry. We will get to the bottom of what happened, I'll make sure of that. But at the moment, we must tend to Kid Flash."
With that Flash and Batman left the room and made their way to the Med Bay.
Batman stood staring at the teenagers in the briefing room, Black Canary and Red Tornado on either side of him while Robin stood directly in front, glaring at the others.
"Normally I would ask what happened directly but this is a delicate matter. Any little detail can be useful and the best way to analyze such things would be either through a mental projection or through a recording." Black Canary stated.
"As you may or may not know, the Cave is equipped with security cameras that are directly linked up to the Watchtower's database." Red Tornado began. "It is set to inform a Leaguer on duty at the Monitor Womb when something dangerous like a break in or attack happens and any other video remnants are stored in an external location. We have commandeered the tapes of the past week and will project them on the holo-screen shortly."
"So pay attention." Batman said as he brought the video window up.
They looked at each other for a moment before the video began to play.
Well that's it for this chapter. I'm trying a different way of writing, if you haven't noticed. This is my first time writing in Medias Res style. Hope you liked it, though. Next chapter will start off from the beginning of the week, right when Batman, Robin, and Flash went off to their missions. From there it's going to progress until we go full circle and then I will write an ending.
As for my other stories, I'm almost done with the second chapter of Captive Speed and have started another story that's first chapter is almost done. I will eventually be able to update my other stories, just give me some time. Now that I finished High School I have about a month free before I start at Valencia. That'll give me some time to write…hopefully ^^;;
P.S. The reason I chose to have them view a recording of the week is because having them tell the stories would ignore too much of Wally's side and I doubt having M'Gann go into Wally's brain would've made Barry happy at the moment. Plus, this could help the Team see and try to understand what they had inadvertantly done with their words and actions.