The steady quick pace of the heart monitor echoed in Wally's ears. His temples pound in rhythm with the beeps. He moves his arm only for it to feel as heavy as lead and difficult to lift. He tries again and sets his arm over his eyes to block out the red of his eyelids. A shuffle off to his side makes him aware of the other presence in the room. A large hand rests on his forearm.
"Wally?" The thick voice asks.
The voice sounds familiar. He knows who the owner is, but he can't place the voice to a face.
"Kid, are you okay?"
Kid, who calls him Kid? Wally slowly lifts his arm from his eyes letting himself get use to the red of his eyelids before opening his eyes to the harsh light he knows awaits him. He takes a deep breath in and exhaled. The consistent beeps of the heart monitor threaten to lull him to sleep.
"Come on Kid, wakey wakey."
His groan rumbles in his chest as he carefully opens his heavy lids. Blinking rapidly to get use to the white light, he notices a red blur hover over him.
"Hey Kid," The red blur says, "how you feeling?"
Slowly the red blur morphs into a form. The form becomes a person. The person turns into the Flash.
"Uncle, Uncle Barry?" His voice hoarse and strain, "what happened?"
"We were kind of hopin' you could tell us?"
"The last thing I remember was going to Blue Valley for the mission and waiting for someone to give me a go ahead outside the warehouse. That's when," Wally pauses. That's when the horrible familiar pain begins to creep through his body.
It always begins at the tips of his toes and fingers before working up the limbs and through his torso. It starts the same: a dull, burning sensation before the agonizing stabbing of hundreds of knives piercing him over and over again, while his muscles are ripped apart slowly. He can't tell his Uncle about this. He'll take Kid Flash away from Wally, take him off the team, and stop hanging out with him. Wally will be left at his parents' house. He'd only see his Aunt Iris and Uncle Barry during his summer vacation like before he recreated his Uncle's accident.
"That's when a weird pain hit me suddenly," Wally finishes. He focuses his eyes at the needle in his hand; he can't look his hero in the eyes and lie to him. Not possible.
A long sigh escape the older speedster and Wally cannot tell if it is because his Uncles know he is lying or if it is out of worry.
"Do you know what it might have been caused by? Has this ever happened before?" The older man runs his hand through his blond hair.
"No, I don't have a clue why it happened," Wally replies, happy to look into his Uncle's blue eyes without lying. "Uncle Barry?"
"What is it Kiddo?"
"When can I get out of this bed?" Wally fidgets and attempts to rip the heart monitor's sticky pads off.
"If you rip the leads from the telemetry Bats is going to kill you, then you'll never get out here," A smirk plays on the older man's lips.
"I only got the 'Batman killing' and the 'never get out' parts," Wally glares at his Uncles, "Why would I rip lead? And what is telemetry? Uncle you need to start speaking English."
"Telemetry is this," Barry points to the heart monitor, "and leads are these little things on you chest."
"The sticky pads have an actual name other than stick pads? And why not call the heart monitor, a heart monitor? Why give it a name like telemetry? No one outside the medical field will ever know what the hell their doctors are talking about."
"I'm going to take that as you're feeling better," Barry ruffles his hair and begins unhooking the heart monitor.
Wally protests the term telemetry. It's not because he doesn't understand the meaning or the root words, but because he is still far too dizzy to care, and he likes heart monitor better. Same with the sticky pads, but mostly because it's more fun to say sticky pads than lead.
"Finally," Wally reaches from the needle in his hand and prepares to remove it.
"No," Barry says sternly, "IV stays in Kid."
"What! Why?" Wally whines and pouts.
His Uncle Barry chuckles at his reaction before a serious expression clouds his face. "You've only stopped vibrating two hours ago and in pain through the night. It's best to leave the IV in for a little while longer. It's the only thing giving your body the nutrition it needs. I need to talk to Batman, but after I'll bring you some food. And when you've finished eating we'll go home."
Before Wally could reply, the Flash was out the door. With a heavy sigh, he throws his legs off the bed and lets them dangle. Why are hospital beds so high off the floor? He breathes and place his feet on the ground and bring himself up to stand while leaning heavily on the bed. A wave of dizziness hits him. He always is disorientated after, what he calls, an 'attack'. He lets the room decide to stop moving and pushes himself up. The IV pole's stand has wheels, and that brings a slight smirk to Wally's features. He grips the pole and makes his way to the door, happy that his Uncle forgot to close it on his way out. Before he can leave the horrible room, he hears Batman talking.
"I still have to run tests on the drug, but from what Robin told me Cold may have something plan for you. Just be on guard."
"I always am on guard Bats," Barry's voice light.
"The evidence the team found is interesting. It seems that who ever made the drug acquired a beaker and other equipment from the local high school."
"Blue Valley High, that's Wally's school."
"I know," Batman says gravely.
"What are you getting at?"
"We could be dealing with a group of students, or a teacher at the school. I won't know for sure until I have analyzed the beaker and the drug."
Someone at his school cannot be responsible. That does not make any sense. Sure he only has one friend there, but Wally can't think of one person who would be responsible. He wants to yell 'It's Peter Heller!', but, as much as he doesn't like Heller, Heller has no motives. He is so busy with football, keeping his girlfriend's name straight, and bully Wally to mastermind anything. He also is far too dumb to think of anything. He could be a lackey, but time. Heller has no time. He needs to stop with the 'Heller Accusations'. There are others in his school, someone who has the clearance, the time, and knowledge to get the proper equipment from the school.
"I have started testing the blood taken from Kid Flash last night. His blood broke my microscope slide," Batman sounds like someone smashed his favorite toy.
"What did you learn?"
"Nothing we don't already know. Kid Flash's molecules were moving. Fast. I'll have to run more tests when it happens again."
"Again? What makes you think that? I just talk to Wally; he said this was the first time. Kid—"
"He lied," Batman says smoothly.
"Why would he lie about this?" Uncle Barry's voice cold as steel.
Wally moves back to the bed. Batman knows he lied. His Uncle Barry now knows he lied. Someone at his school is working with Cold, which honestly is very hard for him to wrap his head around right now. He reaches the bed and begins to lie back down. He lied. Everyone knows. They are going to kick him off the team because of this. Breath in. No. His Uncle will believe him. Wally just wants to see Aunt Iris and have her famous peanut butter double chocolate chip cookies.
"Hey Kiddo, I brought you some food," Uncle Barry walks into the room.
Act like everything is okay, and everything will be okay. Wally plasters on the biggest smile he can muster. His Uncle does not need to know he was eavesdropping
"Food, I feel like I haven't eaten in weeks!"
Barry places the food on a tray and rolls it up to him. He ruffles Wally's hair before sitting down in a chair next to his bed. Before anyone can say anything, Wally digs in. His hunger finally hitting him full force now that food was in front of him, almost teasing his stomach.
"Thanks Uncle Barry," Wally smiles. His smile falters when Barry doesn't return it. "I'm feeling a lot better now that I got some food in me. What do you say we go home and have Aunt Iris make us some of her cookies we love so much?"
"Wally," Uncle Barry begins.
Oh no. Here it comes.
"Has anything like this happened before, I want you to be honest with me now."
Wally pauses. One-two-three.
"No," Wally looks straight into his Uncle's eyes. Well, so much for not being able to look into his hero's eyes while lying. "Can we go home?"
"Yeah, come on," Barry goes to help him out of bed, "You're parents are worried about you."
His parents. He is going to that house. He throat tightens and his heart beats feel like it slowed down. Not his parents. He promised them a weekend without him. He is in so much trouble. He smiles at his Uncle when he notices the older speedster watching him.
"Of course they're worried; they always worry over me whenever I am Kid Flash. That's why I try not to tell them much." Wally smiles easily standing right next to his uncle.
Oh man. He is so boned.
Wally and his Uncle Barry stop in the fields next to his parents' house. Looking at the blue two story house now with two cars in front of it, he can't do this. His parents are going to be mad. Taking out an energy bar from his pouch in his costume, he quickly speeds change into some of his clothes in his duffle bag. He shoves the energy bar in his mouth, could very likely be the last thing he eats today. The two walk up to the door and Barry knocks before entering. His parents must know he was coming over. They hardly ever let anyone just walk into their house.
"Wallace," His mom runs to him and hugs him tightly. "Are you okay dear? Do you want anything eat?"
"He's fine Mary," His dad stands from the couch and walks toward the two speedsters and his wife. "He is a West after all, we're stronger than we look." His Dad smiles at him.
If only the smile isn't false. The kind words of encouragement hiding his distaste. Wally sighs. It'd be better if they yelled at him instead of being fake and happy.
"Wallace honey," Mom gives him a smile, but it never reaches her eyes. "Go rest upstairs, I'll bring you some lunch in a bit."
"Yes Mom," He takes a step towards the stairs looking back at his Uncle. Wally locks eyes with Barry trying to inform him that he wants to go to his place. "I'll see you later Uncle Barry?"
"Yeah Kid, I'll see you later," Barry gives Wally a confused smile.
Wally walks up stairs. Passing the pictures on the wall, on the ugly wallpaper. Okay, so maybe the wallpaper isn't all that ugly. It isn't the nicest, but not the worst. Maybe a little plain, but in comparison to the kitchen, the hall wallpaper is way better. It is white with little pink flowers on thin green vines wavering into each other.
Shutting his door, Wally drops his bag with a thud on the floor. What his parents and his Uncle are talking about, he doesn't care. At least that is what he keeps telling himself. He walks to his bed and flops down with a hoof from the air escaping his stomach. Taking a deep breath from his Flash pillow he turns his head towards his desk. What is he suppose to do while he waits for his Uncle Barry to leave. He can play some computer games.
"I could go for something nice and slow. Hmmm, what do I have?" Wally walked to his duffle bag and dumps it on the floor. "Some Civilization V sounds pretty good about now." Wally looks at his clothes and a small smile slips from his face. "Ah man, my history test! I was supposed to ask Dick for help. What chapters are they again?" Wally begins to pace, "did I write them down?" Wally opens his notebook and flips to the last page he wrote on. No. Nononono! He didn't write it down. What was he thinking? That he could remember it. Man, he is a total idiot. "Okay, let's see. It can't be past chapter fourteen because that was the last chapter we went over in class. Oh man, come on brain work with me! Chapter twelve to fourteen! Got it!" Wally looks at the textbook on the floor, "guess I get to work then."
He takes his notebook and textbook to his desk and sits down. He exhales loudly and opens the book. And so it begins.
Section III: The Civil War 1850-1865
Chapter 12: The Election of 1848
Some historians have called the Mexican War the first battle of The Civil War, for it revived intense and heated debate about the expansion of slavery in the West.
That's boring. What did he write in his notebook from class on this? Flipping through his notebook for chapter twelve notes, he frowns upon finding them.
Chapter 12 Notes! WRITE ACTUAL NOTES!
Find out if Artemis's favorite color is green. She does wear it for her 'archery team'. Mine is red, which is an obvious reason why. It's awesome; Flash awesome! But seriously, she seems more like someone who would like blue. Maybe orange. Not pink. I can't see her liking pink. She'd look nice in blue. Dick's eyes are blue. Wish he didn't always have to hide them behind glasses. Dick's favorite is got to be blue. Or green. No, it's blue. Funny if they both liked blue. I wonder what I'm going to eat at lunch.
What the hell did he write? This is nonsense. He's screwed. His notes are, well, not notes. They're his ramblings. Green. Her favorite color is green. Though blue is a close second. She doesn't like pink, and he is wrong about her looking nice in blue. She looks beautiful in blue. He growls and slams his head on his desk.
"The universe hates me."
A stomping vibrates the wall of his room.
"Wallace, get down here. Now!"
"As I was saying, the universe hates me." Wally stands from his desk.
"Now, Wallace. You don't want me to come up there!"
Wally makes his way out of his room, down the stairs, and into the living room. The living room, sadly, contains his Dad and Mom. Neither looks as happy or worried as they did about ten minutes ago, maybe more. Time is not Wally's thing, and he tends to lose track of it fairly easy.
"We are very disappointed in you young man," his Mom says with her arms over her chest. Her dress a pale pink with big bright pink flower print, it's sleeveless. The straps are thick, and the cut for the neckline is high, but shows her collarbones. The dress hits her at the knees and her brown hair in a loose bun.
"Can you do anything right?" His Dad asks. He is only in a plain white shirt and sweat pants. Apparently he is not expecting guest.
"I'm sorry, I didn't think—"
"That's right! You didn't think. But when do you ever think about anything, huh?"
A rhetorical question. He knows better than to answer that one.
"Wallace, we just wish you'd show more responsibility and stop all this hero nonsense. It's obviously too much for you to handle."
"But Mom, I am being responsible."
"Responsible? You? Don't be stupid. You promised us a weekend without you. Do you know how much money we would have saved this weekend without having to feed you? More than you can even imagine. I'm not made of money, boy. But you're too stupid to know that. You don't know anything about responsibility. If you did you would eat less, help out around here more, and get a job to help pay for the food you eat. You're seventeen years old now, Wallace. We are done holding your hand through this world. It's time to stand up and be your own man."
"My own man? Dad I am seventeen, in high school, and I am a superhero. If anything I proved myself at being responsible, but I don't think being my 'own man' is the solution. What, do you want me to move out? To fend for myself? What do you want from me?"
"To grow up," his Mom says, her calm demeanor slowly melting into anger.
"I don't know what that means," Wally knows he shouldn't fight back. He knows the troubles that await him when he does. He just can't seem to get his mouth to understand it's only making things worst.
"You are a genius in this house Wallace. Shouldn't you know what it means? Shouldn't you be pulling your weight around here? Helping your mother with the housework more?"
"Helping Mom with the housework?" Wally wants to smack himself. Wants to shut his mouth, but the words left to quickly for him to realize what the hell he is doing. "I clean the damn house almost every day before you get home. I do the dishes. I pick up after you, you drunken ass!"
Wally falls to the floor hard. His mind can't process who shoved him, but by the way his dad is glaring daggers at him, he can deduce it was him. What did he say? He was so angry he can't remember. He let his mouth run off. Oh no. He didn't just call his dad a drunken ass. Looking at his Dad's house slippers, he thinks back to what he just said. Yup, he called his dad a drunken ass. He really needs to learn how to control his temper, and his mouth.
"What did you say? You may think you are a responsible hero, but you're nothing more than a disrespectful punk who needs to be taught a lesson." His dad storms to Wally, snatching his arm painfully.
Most likely leaving bruises on his forearm. It's funny, how different his Uncle Barry's hold on Wally earlier today and his father's hold. The same forearm, but is two completely different grasps.
"Stand up," His dad calmly says. The voice sending shivers down his spine.
He quickly stands up and is forced to walk, begin dragged by his dad. What is going on, he doesn't know what going to happen, he's never called his dad a drunken ass before. Well, never to the man's face, or out loud. His dad opens the hall closet by the stairs and shoves Wally in. Wally falls onto the vacuum before the door is slammed shut taking away the light.
"Dad," Wally straightens up. A clicking sounds echoes in the small closet. "Dad," Wally says again, panic seeping into his voice. He goes to turn the door knob to find it won't open. He locked Wally in. His Dad locked him in. What the hell?
"You'll come out when I believe you'd learned your lesson on respect, boy." His Dad's voice muffled through the door.
"Dad, Mom. I am really sorry. Please let me out. I promise I'll be better. Really! I will do more housework, and I'll find a job to help pay for my food bills. Please just let me out."
"Wallace dear, this is for your own good. What you called your Dad is not appropriate, and I don't know where you learned such language. This will give you time to think about what you've done without any distractions of your room." His Mom says.
She's okay with him being locked in a closet, as punishment? This is inhumane. What kinds of people lock others in a small room as punishment? Other than a Jury, the police, and the government, this is not how normal people punish their kids. And he learned the language from them. Are they that stupid to think he wouldn't know what they were yelling at him half the time? Where did he learn such language? That really has to be a joke.
"Mom, please let me out."
"No Wallace, You are going to stay in there until I say you can come out." He can hear his parents begin to walk back into the living room.
The room is dark and stuffy. The coats, boxes, and vacuum only make it feel smaller. He can't move. Wally let's his head bang against the door, and he closes his eyes. He's stuck, in a small dark closet. Breathe Wall-man, just breathe. In and out. Inhale. Exhale. Repeat. Keep your eyes closed. Don't think about how the walls are closing in around him. How they feel like they are breathing. How they are trying to suffocate him. His parents will let him out soon. They know his need to keep moving, even before the accident. Always has to keep moving, even if it's just him fidgeting. Don't think about moving.
The darkness creeps around him. Pushing at him. He leans off the door and opens his eyes. He is greeted by the darkness. Nothing is around him. Nothing. He turns around. Something touches his left arm sending a shiver up it. He freezes. What just decided it is okay to touch him, he doesn't know. His eyes widen, fear clings to his skin making it hard to move. He can hear his heart pound in his ears at abnormally fast pace. An abnormally fast pace for him. He tries to take a deep breath in. He tries to calm his nerves, but he does not prevail.
"Please let me out," he tries to plea again. They can't leave him in here. "Let me out!" He slams his hands on the door. Pounding at the door, he tries to force it open. "I can be good, I really can. Just let me out. Mom? Dad? Please!" He pounds harder on the door, "get me out!" He screams nonsense into the door. He slams his head hard against it and closes his eyes once again. The pain is ignored.
Taking a deep breath, he places both hands on the door with his eyes still closed. Concentrate. His begins to vibrate his body. He grits his teeth and pushes him to vibrate faster. He can do it. He can do it! He's going to vibrate through the door. A warm trickle begins to flow in a steady stream over his lips. Crap, he can't do it. He can't. He is stuck. He places his hand over his nose, covering the blood from dripping everywhere. He has to get out of here.
He opens his eyes to the darkness of the closet.
"What happened?" He groans and sits up rubbing his head. "I must have passed out, man how embarrassing." He stands up and stumbles. He falls into the coats behind him and hit his head on the wall on the other side. How long has he been in the closet for? A couple of minutes, a few hours, a day, how he wish time didn't move agonizingly slowly for him.
Pain explodes in his chest. He takes a deep breath in, but it only heightens the pain. He falls to the floor in a crouch. Don't breath. Don't breath. His body trembles and his sweat begin to roll down his neck. He wants to get out. He needs to get out. The sharp pain in his chest hits full force. The inside of his cheeks begin to swell, and saliva builds up in his mouth. He squeezes his eyes shut. His blunt figure nails dig into the opposite arms bicep. He sips the saliva on the floor. His stomach begins to turn, and the need of oxygen set fire to his lungs. Taking a deep breath in, he whimpers from the pain in his chest. The crushing sensation in his chest, no it's not quite a crushing feeling. More like something is trying to explode out of his chest, burning his insides. Unwanted tears begin to fall from his eyes. He is going to die in this stupid closet. His throat feels clogged. He throws his head to the side, letting the contents from his stomach out. Gasping for air forgetting the pain in his chest, which detonates angrily as if telling him he shouldn't forget.
Light engulfs him before the clean, cooling air kisses his skin. He opens his eye, tears falling from them, he looks at the shadow lingering in front of him. A 'tsk' escapes from the figure above him. His arms are grasped forcefully, and he is pulled out. The figure drops him the floor.
"Clean this up," His Dad says walking away from him.
Wally can't help, but curl into himself. Pulling his knees into his chest and allow more tears fall from his eyes. Blood smeared over his face and bruises on his arm in the shape of hands. He is out. He is so ecstatic to be out. The pain, however, still hasn't gotten the memo of his release and is still burning his chest and his body still trembling. His vision is fuzzy with white, like an old out of focus television. The darkness begins to cloak around him, but unlike last time he accepts it.
He opens his eyes to the darkness surrounding him once more. Standing straight up, he quickly looks around his surrounds to discover he is in the hallway. Not the closet. He is out of the closet. He looks at the open door and looks at his vomit still there. He still has to clean that. He breathes deeply and walks into the living room and looks at the clock. One o'clock in the morning. How long was he in there for? He shakes his head. It doesn't really matter how long he was in the horrible closet anyways. All that really matters it that now he is out of it. And he still has to clean that stupid closet.
Looking, he makes sure no one is around before he runs quickly to the kitchen and getting the cleaning supplies he needs to clean his vomit up. He dashes to the closet and quickly cleans it. Trying not to think too much about it, but the smell of it lingers in the air and carpet. He sighs before shutting the door and running off to the kitchen to put everything away. He sprints to his room and grabs his pajamas and a new pair of boxers. He makes sure they are his Flash boxers. He makes his way quietly to the bathroom. He speeds through his shower and through brushing his teeth before going to his room again.
Once he makes it back to the safety of his room; he takes his phone from the pile of clothes on the floor and turns it on. He looks at the home screen only to realize he has a lot of explaining to do. Three miss calls and countless text messages. He exhales loudly before looking at the miss calls first. Two miss calls from his Aunt Iris and one from Dick. He'll call them tomorrow. Hopefully. He looks at the text messages and can only shake his head. He has one from his Aunt I and too many from Dick.
Aunt Iris- Hey, Honey! Just want to make sure you are okay. If you want to come over for some cookies or just to hang out, I would love to see you. I hope everything is going okay. I heard about the fight at school. You know better than to start fights Wally, but I'm sure you'll explain the situation to me when you come over. Can you make it tomorrow? We'll spend the day doing whatever you want. I finished my new article early today, so I am free. Love you and call me! =-)
He smiles at his Aunt's text. How she always knows when he wants to go over is beyond him. She is one of his best friends. He really doesn't care what they do tomorrow, but it feels like they haven't hung out since he became Kid Flash. All his free time going to being Kid Flash, left really no time to hang out with her. He will have to fix that. Maybe go to the zoo. Yeah, the zoo will be fun, or the science museum. Whichever really, he can live with both. He looks at Dick's texts and Wally can't help, but smile. His best friend is a nut. People think Wally is the annoying one. Those people just don't really know Rob well enough.
Dick-Hey man! Answer your phone.
Dick-ANSWER ME! WALLY! WALLY! WALLY! WALLY!
Dick- Not cool, ignoring me! I'm a worried friend, jerk!
Dick-Ok if you don't answer me soon I'm going to tell Barry and Bruce that it was your idea to paint the Batman symbol on Flash's costume and the Flash symbol on Batman's suit!
Dick- Seriously dude! ANSWER ME! I know you're home. I called your Uncle.
Dick- Text me back when you decided to stop ignoring me.
He smiles at the texts. They are not that many, considering Wally and Dick text all the time. The texts are sent within a five hour span. Wally was in the stupid closet for over five hours. He grabs his phone and begins to text Dick back. The guy is probably patrolling Gotham right now, but he'll get it eventually.
Wally- Hey, Rob! Sorry, it took me so long to get back to you. My phone was on silent, and I must have passed out when I got home earlier. I'll call you tomorrow or something. I'm totally beat. Have fun with the Bat! Talk to you later man!
Wally drops the phone on the floor and crawls under his Flash blanket. He is exhausted and hungry. His vacant stomach howls at him. He debates on getting an energy bar from one of his desk doors or not. His stomach frustrated at not being feed much, growls once again causing an empty pain to set in. Wally puffs out through his nose and stands quickly. He walks to the desk and throws three bars in his mouth before running back under his covers. His exhales happily to the welcoming warmth and lets his drained body rest.
His racing mind, trying to go over the events of the day, but he keeps stopping it. No, he doesn't want to think about today, or yesterday. He just wants to go back to before he pissed off Heller, before he had an 'attack' in front of his whole team, and before he called his dad a drunken ass. He can't seem to keep things normal, to show he is stronger than the others think he is, or to be a good son. He'll get it though. He just has to push himself. Yes, because so far everything is his own fault, and he just wants things to be like they use to before he started to screw up. He just has to remember what he did back than. He just has to. He just has to be better.
Sorry, I just am happy I got this out a little over a week after the last one. Editing took longer than I though, so for the few I told I'd have it out during the weekend, sorry. Honestly, it could have been out earlier. But! I put FireFly on as background noise, and that wasn't a good idea. 'Cause you can't just not watch all of it and then not watch the movie. It's not possible. But before that I watch the first Thor (because I didn't watch it before the second one), Captain America, and then The Avengers. So Sorry for it being later than I originally planed. But yay for getting it out this quick! Okay... I'm done!
Just want to thank Summer's Sunlight, Windchild8178, Immaworkin, and the Three Guests who review the last chapter! I'm happy you guys are enjoying this story and thank you for your feedback!
HOPE YOU ENJOY THIS CHAPTER! don't forget everyone could use some R&R - Rest and Relaxation! Especially with Thanksgiving just around the corner! Let's see if I can't get one more chapter out this month! hehe ^_^