Title: A Dark Speedster: 74X-2D89
Chapter One: One Bad Night
Word Count: 3,975
Summary: Wally West doesn't have a great family life much to contrary belief. All his mother wants is for a normal family. His father blames him for everything wrong. In all honestly, though, he's dealing with. However, sometimes it's just too much. This night is father is hitting harder than ever and Wally is actually afraid. He runs to his friend's city but getting in contact with the bird is harder than normal. For there Everything goes down hill. A few days later, Wally wakes up in a hospital.
Recap: Nothing to recap, this is the first chapter.
West Family Home – 8 miles out of the city limits of Blue Valley, Nebraska
The West family was sitting down for dinner, Mary setting the pot roast on the table while her son carries over the dinner plates. Rudy comes out of his office and joins them. The small family chats idly as they fill their plates.
"How was school, Wallace?" Rudy asks his son who wishes just once that his parents wouldn't call him by his full name. Wally paused between bites answer, "Good, sir."
"Did you get your test results back?" Mary interjects into the normal conversation. "The one in math you took last week."
Wally grins. "Excellent. I got an A. I only missed one, Mom." He was really proud of that. After all he had actually studied for the exam thanks to his friend, Robin, who helped him out.
"Should 'of gotten them all." Rudy's rough voice scolds the redhead. Wally's grin fades. Mary doesn't say anything. She never does.
"Yeah, I guess I should have." Wally agrees with his father because it's easier in the long way when he does. After all these years of living with Rudy, Wally knows how to make it through a dinner without getting hit. Harder than it sounds.
Ring ring ring
Rudy excused himself to answer the phone. Shortly after he answers it within the living room, Rudy changes lines and takes the call within his office.
Mary bites her lip. "I wish he'd not take calls during dinner. Just once I wished…" When Mary trails off, Wally prompts her. "Oh, dear, I wasn't saying anything." Mary smiles and Wally lets it go. His mother wasn't right. Not anymore at least. All she ever wanted was a normal family; instead she got Rudy and Wally. They're both nutcases and she knows it making her a bit off most days.
Wally tries to make it easy on her as best he could. Mainly by pretending he was as normal as she wanted him to be. He never used his powers or mentioned anything about them. Superheroes were a forbidden topic and he didn't bring up his teammates and only spoke of his uncle in a familiar sense.
Sometimes Wally thought it helped. Other times he just feels hopeless with her.
Rudy comes back into the room. He slams his fist onto the table. "Rudy!" Mary gasped surprised.
"Shut up." Rudy growls. "How did you do this? How do you mess so much up?" That wasn't towards his wife. That was towards Wally. The redhead dropped his fork peering at his dad in surprised. He had no idea what Rudy was talking about.
Wally didn't get a chance to ask what Rudy was talking about when the older man threw a solid punch. Wally scrambled to keep his balance and grabbed at the table. Unfortunately the table cloth gave away at Wally's weight knocking plates and silverware to the floor. Mary cried out at the broken china.
Rudy moves in to attack again but this time Wally had enough time to see it coming. He escapes without the use of his power and rolls up to his feet. "What the hell is this, dad?" Wally demands.
"You ruin everything!" Rudy swings again. Wally counters and throws a punch himself.
A few years ago, Wally would never have thought of defending himself but after accepting that he simply would never be the son his father wanted Wally was able to move on. Yeah, it was totally better. He went from denial of the abuse to raw anger that he harnessed to finally defend himself.
It helped during fights while in costume. Even more so when Rudy got into one of his fits.
Father and son continued to dance until they ended up in the living room leaving Mary wailing over the mess in the kitchen. Wally blocks another punch and counters with his own jab. Rudy grunts at the connection but doesn't ease up.
They go back and forth for several minutes before either one of them is able to land a hit again. Unfortunately it's Rudy. For an old guy, he has a solid punch. The redhead falls back into the coffee table. Glass shatters and wood splinters. His father starts yelling at him, "You damn failure! How can any one person be such a screw up? Can you do anything right, you little fag?"
Wally has no idea what he's talking about though he admits that might because his head is spinning. Rudy tries to jump on top of his son, fist flying, pinning him but even dazed, even without super speed Wally has quick reflexes and he's able to get his legs in between his father and himself. Due to running, his legs are the strongest part of him and with as much force as he can musters he extends his legs into his father's chest. There is a very audible crack and Rudy cries out.
Taking the chance, Wally pushes himself from the wreckage of the coffee table. He tries to run upstairs to his room but Rudy recovers enough to make a grab at him and soon enough the two are rolling around on the ground throwing legs and arms about.
Some part of Wally registers that Mary is still in the kitchen asking why they had to make such a mess. The rest of him tries to figure out how to get out of this situation. Usually by now his father has backed off or he had made it to his room. This was different though, Rudy had a gleam in his eye and didn't slow down. Wally had seen those eyes on enough criminals by now to now this was not going to end well.
What the hell?! Was his dad really trying to kill him?
An outstretched hand bumps into something hard and solid; Wally grabs it and slams it on his father's head. The man goes slack and Wally rushes to stand dropping the broken off coffee table's leg. Wally doesn't wait to check if his father is alright.
In a one second decision Wally doesn't run up stairs like he would normally do, instead he books it towards the front door. He was done. This was over and hell with it all.
Rudy yells his name and Wally steps on it.
Wally doesn't stop to open the door; instead he barreled right through the large fog glassed pane of glass in the middle of it – what the hell was a few more glass shards hurt? He jumped off the porch. His feet never touched a step.
And he's gone. He doesn't look back. He doesn't need to look to know his dad is on his dad is cursing on the porch and his mother is still cleaning up the broken china. Wally bets she's not even crying.
Wally finally stops running thirty miles from his parent's place in the middle of some farmer's mowed field. The moon was starting to get high and Wally knew he needed to figure out what to do next.
He collapsed to his knees resting as ideas ran through his fast-paced mind.
While calling the authorizes was technically an option it never crossed Wally's mind. Getting the cops involved would bring up a lot of questions and publicity. As a guy living the down low, Wally couldn't have that. Hell, he wouldn't put it past his dad to rat out his hero life as revenge.
He could run to his aunt and uncle's place in Central. Wally had always been welcomed there but the young couple would want answers cause they sure as hell wouldn't write off the black eye and blood. They would get him tell them what had happen and dear god wouldn't they be disappointed in him. Unlike with his own parent's Wally cared what Barry and Iris thought of him. He wanted them to be proud of him.
Plus Barry would be mad. It was hard to rile the blond man but once you did…hell, it made his dad look tame. Barry might do something he'd regret later and all because of Wally. Wally couldn't let that happen. He couldn't tell them. Not now.
Wally looked down at himself, especially not now. He really didn't look good. Along with the black eye he could feel how sore his jaw was, he bet there was a bruise there too. At least there was gonna be one soon. He had scratches along his arm from the front door and he could feel blood trailing his back from the coffee table. Idly he wonders how bad his back looks. Wood pierces the back of his thigh. He takes a minute to plucks out the smaller bits. He can feel the bruises forming on his body. There's no doubt that at least one of his ribs is broken.
Honestly it could have been worse. It has been worse. He's just glad he can still run.
He needs to be patched up.
The mountain? Hell no, Wally thinks, the amount of cameras there and the watch dog, Red Tornado, is always there. The android would totally rat him out to Batman or the Flash. He would think it was best or something like that.
Who was a good nurse that would keep his mouth shut? Who could he convince that it was nothing? Or at least to hold off on telling anyone. Someone that trusted him. Someone he trusted. Wally could only think of one person.
Robin. Wally's best friend.
Sure the kid was smart enough to figure out that the situation wasn't "nothing" but Wally was sure he could convince him that Wally, himself, would do something about it. Hell, maybe he even really would.
Wally headed for Gotham.
It wasn't a long run, but between the fight and the short dinner Wally was exhausted by the time he finally got into Gotham's city limits. However, he didn't stop running until he was in the alley way behind this classic themed diner that was open twenty-four/seven. It had the best milkshakes and whenever Wally came into town, Robin would met the other hero there.
Robin's secret identity, due to his mentor's paranoia, was a secret even to the bird's team and while the others were sure Wally knew his real name in all honesty Wally didn't. It didn't matter. Not to Wally at least. He knew who his friend was – he didn't need a name to know that Robin was the best goddamn person to ever bless this planet.
Alright that might be an exaggeration but not by much. Robin was the type of hero Wally wished he could be and Robin didn't even have any real powers.
Wally starts to search his pocket for his cell phone but curses when he finds it missing along with his wallet. They were still at his house. He had left them beside his bed as he usually did when he got home. He hadn't even thought about grabbing them before he left.
He continued to fish through his pockets but only found a fist full of pocket change. Wally laughed but walked out of the alley way onto the main street. At the street corner a short ways down sits two newspaper booths and an old pay phone. He wondered if it still worked. He hoped so.
Walking over to it he ignored the looks others gave him for his beat up face. No one was going to give him mind, this was Gotham after all.
The pay phone was ancient but it rang when Wally feed it coins and dialed Robin's number. He had memorized the bird's number after his father had broken his first cell phone. He had spent two months pressing in the number at his Uncle's house whenever he wanted to chat to his friend. Even when Robin had supplied him a new cell phone Wally had continued to remember the number just in case.
"Hello?" Robin's voice answers on the other line. There is a hint of hesitation. The young hero didn't recognize the number and he doesn't just hand that information out.
"Rob!" Wally grins into the phone. Maybe his night wasn't a total lost.
"Wally?" Robin sounds relieves for a second. There is a lot of noise in the background. What was that sound? "Look, Wals I'm a little busy."
Wally interrupts him. The call might not last long and he doesn't have enough change to make a second call. "I know but this –"
Robin doesn't let up, "I really can't talk now. As soon as I'm done I'll call you back but this is important. Alright, dude?" Robin asks but he doesn't mean in. "I got to go." And Robin hangs up the phone. Wally knows what was in the background.
Seriously? Some party was more important than him? What if that phone call had been life or death? He had needed help and his best friend hadn't even heard him out! Why? He hadn't even used his real phone. Hadn't that been a sign that something was wrong? Had Robin seen it and just ignore it like he had ignored Wally himself?
Was he not important enough to even be heard out? Maybe he wasn't. Rudy certainly thought so.
For a second Wally thinks about going back to Rudy and Mary. They knew where he stood apparently. They're probably calmed down by now too and he could use the med kids there.
Wally literally shakes himself of the idea. He was thinking crazy. Robin didn't think that of him. Rudy was wrong. He was never going back to his parent's place. He just needed to calm down.
He was tired, sore and hungry.
Without any money and no way of getting hold of Robin, Wally knows he'll have to leave Gotham. Where to go? Sighing, Wally knows where. His aunt and uncle's place. He should have known he'd end up there eventually. When all else fails Wally knows he got his uncle and aunt beside him. It was the best option really. He'd just live with the repercussions.
Maybe they'd patch him up and let him sleep before they made him answer questions.
Too tired to run, Wally headed for the closest zeta. Trying to cut some time off his route Wally ducked down a few alley ways.
He had almost made it. Just one more block. However, it just wasn't his night.
"Hey, kid." The good for nothing gang member wanna be greeted as he stepped out of the shadows, knife in hand. "Why don't ya hand over all ya moneys."
Wally held up his hands backing up slightly, "Can't. Don't have any." He almost grinned at the irony but stopped when the thug stepped closer to him, knife extended.
I'll be fine, Wally reminds himself as he starts to build up his speed to get himself out of this mess. He has to use it properly or he'll expose himself. He doesn't have a lot of energy right now, anyways, gotta make the best of what he got.
The guy laughs and points at Wally's face, "What? Second time tonight you get mugged?" Wally stays silent. That wasn't funny. "Fine. We'll do this the hard ways." The thug is sure Wally is lying.
Again the mugger steps forward and prepared for the guy's knife thrust Wally's completely surprised by the attack from behind.
Wally collapses to the ground, his speed vanishing as head starts to pound. "What the?" Wally curses as he looks around. Oh joy, the thug has a friend. Probably from the same wanna be gang. And the new guy has a frickin' block of concrete in his hands. What? Was the hardware store out of knives? Wally looks at the block a bit closer.
Is that paint? Wally finds it hard to think and he works hard to concentrate on the discoloring. No, no, that's not paint. That's blood. Oh, that's his blood. When the guy raises the block over his head to bring down again Wally tries to move. He's too groggy, too tired though and the concrete clips him.
Wally passes out hard in that alley way.
He doesn't feel it when thug number one kicks him and together with his partner starts to go through his pockets. They kick him one more time when they don't find anything and move on to trying to find another victim.
Same Night, October 8th
The Top Floor of Wayne Towers, Gotham City
Richard "Dick" Greyson shoves his phone back into his suit jacket's pocket after checking the time. Wayne Industries was hosting a party for all of its investors and the company's namesake, Bruce Wayne, and his young ward had to be seen.
The large hall was filled to the brim with investors, big names, CEOs, and reporters. Every channel and magazine in Gotham had someone in the hall covering the event and looking for something for their headlines. All eyes were on the hosts of the party.
Dick had spent the majority of the night at Bruce's side answering questions and playing the role of heir but as the night drew longer he was able to escape more and more. At the moment he was standing out on the balcony lost in thought, the music dulling over the city, the air brisk. It was growing late and people were starting to depart making the balcony empty except for Dick and an older couple that stood by the doors.
He was thinking about his friend, Wally. They were growing closer now that they saw each other more and more thanks to Young Justice. Dick knew before the team that he could trust the redhead with his life and had wanted to tell his best friend his real name. The issue wasn't really an issue in their friendship as Wally had quickly stopped pushing for the information when he had decided they knew each other well enough to know him.
Dick grinned at the memory of himself asking Wally why he was so okay with not know who he really was. The redhead was sitting across him at a diner in Gotham that they frequented. Shades covered Dick's blue eyes and his street clothes heavy and big. Wally had smiled and began to quote Shakespeare, "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." Wally had not been able to stop laughing at the red in Dick's cheeks at that response.
Wally didn't push and maybe he wouldn't care about Dick's real name but he had wanted to tell his best friend it ever since that night in the diner. However, Bruce had forbade it calling Wally immature and spastic. Dick was hoping with the recent increase of missions for the young team lately that Batman would see how reliable Wally really was. Then, maybe Dick would be able to talk his adoptive father into letting Wally in on the secret.
In all honesty, Dick just hoped that Bruce would trust Wally as much as Dick did. The older teen had proven he could keep his own identity and time and time again had even saved Dick's life. Batman just refused saying they couldn't take the risk.
That's what Bruce didn't understand though, Wally wasn't a risk. At least not to Robin and certainly not to Dick.
"Well, well well, I was wondering where you wondered off to." The female voice broke Dick from his thoughts and he turned around to see the reporter for LM Magazine, Miss Rachael Gonzales, strolling towards him in a light pink strapless dress and pearls. Dick figured that outfit worked well in getting the older men to talk. He also figured the press badge clipped to her chest deterred just as much.
"Who me?" Dick faked ignorance as he leaned back against the railing.
"Yes, you." Rachael laughed like he had just told a joke. "Richard Greyson, adoptive heir." Dick rolled his eyes and if she noticed she didn't let on. "I was hoping I could ask you a few questions. You know get your perspective and thoughts on things."
Dick straightened his back. "What type of things, Miss Gonzales?"
"I mean, Richard," She rolled the 'r' in his name, "what do you think of Mr. Wayne's new girlfriend, Jenny Warrick." Dick almost laughed. He thought she was going to ask something…something important. He should have known better. LM Magazine was a gossip pool.
"I don't know Ms. Warrick very well. Bruce and her haven't been dating very long; he doesn't introduce them to me right away in case, you know, it doesn't work out." He answers with a shrug of his shoulders. "I amuse she's a smart woman – head of the firm downtown, isn't she?"
Rachael nods, "Yes, she is. Ms. Warrick is a very talented and powerful woman. Your father and her relationship is a making for a very strong force in the business world. So I was wondering if their dating is due to actually feelings or just business."
"Couldn't tell you." Dick tries to cut the conversation short. He moves away but Rachael follows ignoring the hint. Luckily, Rachael's next question is cut off by Dick's phone going off. "Excuse me." Fishing for his phone he can't help but notice how the reporter doesn't leave earshot.
He doesn't recognize the number but if he doesn't answer it then he'd have to go back to Ms. Gonzales' questioning. "Hello?"
"Rob!" Dick can't hide his surprise.
"Wally?" What did he want? Oh, no this was not good. He couldn't talk to Wally right now – he wasn't Robin at the moment. Dick took a glance at Ms. Gonzales. There was no telling what sort of listening device she had on her or how smart she really was. It was always surprising how clever the reporters could be. "Look, Wals I'm a little busy."
For a second Dick thinks Wally is trying to say something but by then he's already halfway through his sentence. "I really can't talk now. As soon as I'm done I'll call you back but this is important. Alright, dude?" Dick tries to assure his friend. "I got to go." And Dick hangs up the phone.
Rachael steps back up to him, a grin on her face. "So, Mr. Greyson, who's your friend?" Dick tries to ignore her. "Oh come on, tell me something. It's common knowledge you don't hand out your phone number to just anyone. Practically nobody at your school has it – and trust me people have looked into it. So, who's Wally? He must be a good friend to have your number except I don't recall a Wally in your circle of friends."
She knew her stuff. Dick would give her that but that's all he would give her. Dick walked back into the party, hoping to lose her in the crowd.