A.N. Wow, thank you all so much for the support! Reviewers and followers, you rock! Since you all seem to really like this little thing I've been writing, I thought long and hard about what else I could try to stretch my skills and make it even better… So I'm expanding it from a short, six-chapter tale to a much longer story! This chapter will introduce a few more elements to the big story, and it will involve the whole Team, and some more Wally whumping that we all know and love. Those of you wondering about Spitfire, I will say this: you may see more of it later in the story, but it will be a subplot at best. Artemis is not a main character, so while I totally ship the two like everyone else, I want this story to be mostly about Wally.
Anyways, this chapter is insanely long, I know. I thought about splitting it up, but it just seemed to work better like this. Let me know what you think! I hope you enjoy it! :D
Wally is pumped to finally go out for a night of crime-fighting with the Team. But when the fight is on his home turf against his most familiar villains, will the mission take a turn for the worse?
And will it cause even more complications in the future?
November 17, 17:30 EST
Recognized. Kid Flash. B03.
"The Wall-man is here!" Wally announced as he always did, the tingling he always felt from Zeta-tubing into the Cave wearing off. The smell of earth and soil greeted him, and the soothing lighting made him feel more relaxed by the minute. This was a safe haven, a place for like-minded teen heroes to gather, joining forces to defeat evil, and best of all…
"Hey, Wally," M'gann smiled at him. "There's chocolate chip cookies in the kitchen if you want some!"
The Cave always had food.
Wally grinned wide. "Really? You rule, Megs! Thanks!" He darted into the kitchen to grab one or two or thirty. His stomach was eating him alive right now.
But guess who beat him to it? Dick- sorry, Robin - and Artemis were leaning against the counter, with Robin reaching over and snatching up the very last cookie on the tray and popping it in his mouth.
"Oh hey, Wally," Artemis sneered. "You didn't want these, right? We took the liberty of polishing off the last batch." They gave twin smirks of pure evil at Wally, who was nearly leaning on the island for support. Some friends he had.
"You… you didn't, guys. Did you?" Their dastardly smiles told the whole story. Wally felt absolutely crushed. Maybe these two meant to be funny, but he was literally starving. He needed food, and he needed it now.
Not even in the mood to complain at this point, Wally groaned, then turned to rummage in the refrigerator for sandwich fixings and started to make a dozen ham and cheese sandwiches on the island. He heard Artemis shrug and exit the kitchen, leaving him and Robin alone. Wally focused on his task, his vision almost blurring from his hunger. His best friend sat on the opposite counter. "What's up, man? You seem to have less pep in your step than normal. Feeling whelmed?"
"Nope, Rob. Not whelmed at all," Wally sighed, stuffing the first sandwich entirely into his mouth before getting started on the second one.
"Rough day at school?" Robin asked curiously.
Wally looked up at his best friend with a sigh. "You have no idea."
And it was true. Boy Wonder wasn't a metahuman, and neither was Artemis. They didn't have to hide any powers or freakish metabolisms from their teachers and classmates. Kaldur couldn't relate either, since he went to school down in Shayeris where everyone had gills just like him. Conner and M'gann had no problem blending in at their school - which was ironic because they were aliens, for crying out loud - and even Zatanna, despite being a different species, a Homo magi, looked and acted exactly like any other human in her Catholic school.
Wally was the only one whose powers made his non-hero life that much more complicated.
He finished his fifth sandwich and offered Robin one. His friend wordlessly took it, and they leaned back and ate in comfortable silence.
Suddenly, Batman's low, gruff voice came on the intercom. "Team, report to the mission room."
Yes. Finally, a chance to kick some bad guy butt and take out his frustrations on villains who deserved it. Wally and Robin exchanged grins of excitement. "Race you there," Wally taunted, bolting toward the mission room with Robin swinging through the Cave right behind him.
November 17, 17:47 EST
Batman's face batglared menacingly down at the Team from the big screen in the mission room. Throughout the entire briefing, Wally resisted the urge to start pacing. The day had been dragging long enough, and he was ready to release all of this nervous energy.
In his cold, grave voice, Batman informed the teens on their assignment parameters for the evening. "The Flash is off-world on a League mission tonight, so he asked me to pass along a tip from the Central City news station." Wally's head jerked up in surprise. No doubt Aunt Iris probably tipped Uncle Barry off. What was going on?
Four pictures flashed (no pun intended) onto the screen. Captain Cold, Trickster, Captain Boomerang, and Mirror Master. Wally narrowed his eyes. What were his villains up to now?
Batman continued. "The news source claims that the Rogues plan to make a heist at the Flash Museum in downtown Central City. Not much else is known, but Flash wished to ask Kid Flash's opinion in this matter." The Team turned to look at Wally. "Do you wish to take this mission alone, since this is your city and your villain gallery? Or do you want to have the Team with you?" asked Batman.
Wall didn't hesitate. "I'll need everyone on this." Robin stared at him for a moment in surprise.
"Very well," Batman nodded. "Your assignment is to perform covert reconnaissance, and if possible, stop the Rogues in whatever they are plotting. Kid Flash," Wally stood to attention. "You will co-lead this mission alongside Aqualad, since you will know the most about the area and the villains' abilities. Team, good luck." Batman's face vanished from the screen.
There was a pause as the weight of responsibility sank in. He was co-leading. He was the expert on the targets, for once. Sweet.
Wally clapped his hands together in anticipation. "Alright guys, let's talk game plan." But the Team started exchanging smiles and a few chuckles. "W-what's so funny?" Wally asked, very confused.
Artemis rolled her eyes. "Please, Baywatch. Everyone knows that the 'Rogues' aren't exactly the baddest bad guys out there. They're pretty tame, especially compared to villains in cities like Gotham. They even have rules against killing. This mission is a bit… below us, if you catch my drift."
Robin crossed his arms. "Yeah, why didn't you just want to take this one yourself? You could take these guys out easily on your own, right? It's your turf after all, you do this stuff all the time. Piece of cake."
Wally couldn't believe he was hearing this! "Come on, you guys! Just because the Rogues have standards doesn't mean they're not dangerous! We have to take this seriously. We can't afford to be careless." He inhaled and explained, gesturing emphatically with his hands, "The Flash has been challenging these guys for years before I even got my speed. They give him a hard time, let alone yours truly. The Rogues… they don't mess around, alright? Trust me."
Wally knew all too well what happened when you let your guard down around the Rogues, and it was never pretty. It was important that he wasn't going solo tonight, and it was equally important that everyone understood why. He locked eyes with Kaldur, silently pleading for him to back him up.
Kaldur didn't disappoint. "Team, we have a duty to complete any mission Batman assigns us and to complete it to the best of our ability. Dissent is not an option. Let us board the Bio-Ship promptly." The authority in his voice spurred the others to head out to the hangar and board M'gann's ship immediately.
Wally hung back. "So, Kaldur, I was thinking strategy, and I—"
The Atlantean interrupted. "With all due respect, Kid Flash, I do agree with the Team on this matter. We have fought and defeated more powerful and more menacing villains in the past, and considering how this team has grown since we began, I have every confidence that this mission will be a quick success." With a firm nod, Kaldur joined the Team on board, leaving Wally to sigh and bring up the rear.
He only hoped things turned out as well as the Team expected, and not as he was beginning to fear.
November 17, 18:23 CST
The Bio-Ship was camouflaged and hovering over the Flash Museum. The Rogues hadn't shown up yet, and the Team was changing their suits to stealth-tech before descending to hide in the museum.
All except Wally, who retained his yellow-and-red standard colors so that the Rogues would recognize him and might be a little more comfortable in explaining their scheme. He and Flash had an… unconventional relationship with the Rogues Gallery, after all. Also, the Team agreed that once they finished the mission, KF would stay behind to handle any press and continue his patrol of Central City. He would need the uniform that everyone recognized for that.
As the Team was prepping to drop down into the museum, Wally was still spouting out any advice they might need to know. "Robin and Artemis, don't forget that Captain Boomerang has a lot of different trick shots and isn't afraid to fight dirty to get the upper hand. Miss Martian and Zatanna, Mirror Master can use any reflective surface to teleport, not just mirrors. The Flash Museum has a lot of shiny artifacts, so he'll probably use those to his advantage. Aqualad and Superboy, Captain Cold—"
Superboy grunted impatiently. "Can we just get his over with?" Without a warning, he jumped down to the Museum below. The Team followed and Wally shook his head. He really, really hoped the Team would take the mission seriously.
Three minutes later, everyone was in position. Miss Martian set up the mind-link, and Aqualad asked, Is everyone ready?
Zatanna confirmed, Yeah, we're good. Anyone have eyes on the enemy yet?
There was a pause, and then Robin piped up, I see shadows and hear some voices. East Wing.
Alright. Team, move in, but remain covert, Aqualad commanded. Wally silently tiptoed down from the North Wing and looked around the corner down the East Wing. Captain Cold was up front, flanked on his right and left by Mirror Master and Captain Boomerang, while Trickster trailed behind.
"What are we looking for again, exactly?" Wally heard Mirror Master ask.
"Flash confiscated my prototype ice-missile launcher last month in a botched robbery. I need it if we're going to pull this off," Cold replied in his low, cool tone.
Trickster skipped up to the front. "What makes you think he's going to show up tonight, anyway?"
Captain Boomerang slapped the clown upside the head. "Weren't ya paying attention, ya little bugger? We dropped a hot tip at the news office this morning. If Flash ain't here tonight, he's either stupid… or too scared to face us."
Wally bristled at the Rogues calling his uncle a coward. But he remained still in his position, waiting for Aqualad's cue.
Captain Cold resumed his brisk pace. "I think the weapon's near the South Wing. Come on, hurry up. I want this to be fast and easy. We don't want to be caught by surprise."
Well, that was an opening for an epic entrance if there ever was one.
Now, Kid, Aqualad urged. "Too late, boys." Wally emerged from the shadows, smiling his trademark speedster smirk. "Who wants to surrender first, no harm no foul?"
Captain Boomerang did not look amused. "Well, look who it is. Where's your daddy, Baby Flash? Surprised he let you out alone on a night like tonight."
Wally crouched in a running stance, loving the rush of adrenaline that sparked and flushed him with energy. He pulled his goggles down from his forehead over his eyes and replied calmly, "Good thing I'm not alone, then, right?"
That's when the Team swooped in from all directions, and the fight began.
November 17, 18:49 CST
At first, the battle seemed to be going smoothly for the teenaged heroes. Superboy and Aqualad were double-teaming Captain Cold, who had his hands full avoiding Superboy's strength while using his freeze-gun to counter Aqualad's water attacks. Ice shards flew everywhere.
Artemis and Robin were handling Captain Boomerang pretty well, with Artemis attacking the villain head-on while Robin used his birdarangs to take out the boomerangs that were flying in arcs around the room. Their aim and teamwork was flawless, and Boomerang was beginning to look very frazzled.
Zatanna cast her reverse-speech spells to defend against Mirror Master's multiplication abilities, while Miss Martian used her shape-shifting abilities to dodge his reflective attacks. Neither girls were breaking a sweat yet.
And Wally was taking Trickster one-on-one. The Flash Museum was designed so that each wing was shaped like a tube, so Wally was able to run up the walls, over the ceiling, and back down the other side with ease, like a toy car on a loop-de-loop racetrack. It made avoiding Trickster's acid-blasts simple while allowing him to keep up full speed in any direction. "What's your play, Trickster? Are you off your medication again?" Wally shouted over the noise.
The delusional clown cackled. "I dunno, Baby Flash! Are you off your medication?" He pointed his acid gun and fired again.
Wally sighed. The guy wasn't making any sense. Not a good sign. He ran in another full loop, the blood temporarily rushing to his head whenever he went upside down on the ceiling, and then slid across the tiled floor, sweeping his foot behind Trickster's legs and knocking him down flat on his back.
Black Canary taught him that move.
Wally placed his foot on the clown's chest to hold him still. "Come on, James, let's be real. What are you after? Flash would not be happy to see you out of the hospital, buddy."
Trickster just shrugged. "Aww, Baby Flash, I dunno. Cold just said that there would be free ice cream afterwards if I helped him out on a robbery tonight. We didn't think you'd show up, though, we were expecting Flash, honest!" The criminal looked remorseful. "I'm… I'm sorry, Baby Flash."
Wally frowned, lifting his foot off of Trickster in confusion. "What do you mean, you're sorry? For what?" Trickster, of all the Rogues, was actually pretty harmless most of the time. If he was apologizing, then something was very wrong with this picture.
Trickster started blubbering like a baby. "S-sorry your friends have to get hurt, Baby Flash!"
Wally felt a chill go down his back. He spun around at lightning speed to see that the battle had gone downhill fast. "Oh, no…"
He made a move to assist the Team, but Trickster had surged up and pinned him down hard, and then sealed him to the floor with super-super-glue. Wally could only watch in frustration while he focused on vibrating to create friction that could break his bonds.
The fact was, the Rogues were unique among criminals. These villains were used to fighting speedsters on a daily basis, and after years of experience dueling with Flash and Kid Flash, they were experts at thinking outside the box and coming up with fast counterstrikes. They were proficient at seeing patterns and problem-solving.
So to the Team, who had underestimated the Rogues and were unprepared for enemies who thought and acted several times faster than them, the fight went south before long.
Mirror Master had used the scuffed reflection of an old metal helmet that Flash took from Gorilla Grodd five years ago to create ten identical clones of himself, allowing him to sneak up and knock Zatanna out from behind. He had then thrown a handful of glass dust into the air and used the millions of reflective surfaces to create a web of lasers that momentarily trapped Miss Martian, giving him time to whack her in the head with the helmet.
Captain Cold used his freeze-gun to ice the floor, creating a slick surface that caused Superboy to slip and loose his balance. With a few quick shots, the Kryptonian clone was frozen in a thick casing of ice against a wall. Aqualad fared better on the ice and used his water-bearers to make a mace out of his enchanted water. He managed to bat Cold's freeze-gun out of his grip, then dealt a strong hit into the villain's chest, knocking him back several feet.
Just then, Mirror Master, who had vanished from the scene for a few minutes after dealing with the magician and the telepath, emerged from the South Wing and tossed a large pale-blue and steel device to Cold. "This what you were looking for, Cold?"
The icy villain stood to his feet and smiled, weighing the machine in his hands. "Exactly. Much obliged," he nodded at his comrade, then pointed the machine at Aqualad's approaching form and fired. Two missiles, as wide as Kid Flash's head and about as long as Robin was tall, materialized from the launcher. They were an unusual combination of ice and metal lacing, and when they made contact with Aqualad's chest, they threw him back nearly fifty feet to slam into a display case. Aqualad was out cold (again, no pun intended).
Robin and Artemis weren't doing much better. Captain Boomerang was tossing out four or five boomerangs a second, and Robin was having trouble keeping up with them. Artemis was starting to run out of arrows, and an explosive boomerang detonated near her feet, throwing her back against a wall. Robin had to cover both of them while she recovered, now placed on the defensive, and he was looking pretty desperate.
Wally growled in anger. Boomerang was known for extremely harmful – even lethal – weapons. Robin and Artemis needed help. He was almost free…
There! The glue broke apart, and Kid Flash jackknifed to his feet, dealing a swift uppercut to Trickster's chin. "Sorrynotsorry!" Then he turned and dashed across the museum to aid his friends.
Robin had his hands full with defending Artemis, who was now out of arrows, and avoiding boomerangs that kept arcing and returning to strike at him from all angles. As Wally came closer, he saw in slow motion a paper-thin, razor-sharp boomerang escape Robin's sight. Wally did the math, calculated the trajectory, and saw where it would land.
Kid Flash put on a burst of speed, and leaped, tackling Robin to the ground and out of the way with a yell. Not losing his momentum, Wally kept running up a wall and used it to springboard out and kick another stray boomerang away. He landed and came to a skidding stop at Robin and Artemis's side.
"You guys okay?" Wally asked quietly, watching Captain Boomerang's movements carefully. The villain had paused for a moment, eyeing Kid Flash with a mad gleam in his eye.
Or was that… triumph?
Robin nodded, but looked oddly uneasy. "Yeah, we're fine. Question is, are you okay, KF?" He pointed at Wally's left shoulder. Wally looked down.
The silver boomerang had sliced through the material in his suit and was halfway embedded in his arm, just below his shoulder pad. Wally apparently was so hyped up on adrenaline, he didn't even notice. Even now, he didn't feel any pain. But it was definitely there, and there was definitely a wound, and he was definitely bleeding.
Well, that is just peachy.
Wally reached over and pulled out the boomerang, shaking off the few drops of blood. Eyeing Captain Boomerang, he remembered what Uncle Barry always told him whenever they fought the Rogues: the best way to defeat an unpredictable enemy is to be unpredictable yourself.
What's more unpredictable than Kid Flash throwing a boomerang? Wally chucked the weapon the way Uncle Barry had taught him. It arced beautifully through the air, and Captain Boomerang, not expecting the attack, was caught off guard and pinned to the wall by the fabric of his coat.
Ignoring the pain that was starting to flare up in his arm, Kid Flash turned to his teammates. "Robin, do you have a net in your belt?" Because you can ask a Bat for anything and nine times out of ten he'll have it. It's pretty awesome.
"Yeah," Robin nodded, reaching to pull it out.
"Perfect. Artemis, you and Robin get ready to capture the Rogues as soon as I round them up." Wally turned to dash off, but Artemis grabbed his hand.
"You sure you're okay? That looks… really bad." She looked a little grossed out, and was that concern he detected in her tone of voice? Wally ignored the little fluttering feeling in his lungs, brushing it off as symptoms of the beginning of shock from his injury.
"Aw, shucks, you do care! No worries, I'm a speedster. We heal fast!" he replied as he ran off.
November 17, 20:02 CST
Fifteen minutes later, the Rogues were dangling off the ground in a net hanging from the ceiling of the Flash Museum, the Team had returned to the Bio-Ship, and Kid Flash directed the police and clean-up crews. He waved off the EMS medics, insisting that his arm was fine – especially compared to the rest of the team – and emerged from the front doors of the museum to face the waiting press.
Dealing with news reporters was a necessary evil in his job description. Uncle Barry taught him early on how to answer their nosy questions diplomatically and heroically, and Wally now handled the press all the time on his own. Still, he wanted nothing more right now than to get on patrol of the city and then go to the Allen house for a nice late dinner and a good night's rest.
"Kid Flash, what were the Rogues up to?"
"Kid Flash, where is the Flash?"
"Kid Flash, did you nab the villains alone?"
"Kid Flash, are you injured?" That question came from his Aunt Iris, and while she was careful to look and sound impartial, he could tell that she was worried about his arm.
He smiled and replied, "I may have been nicked a little by Captain Boomerang, but I assure you that my arm has already healed quickly. It's just a scratch." Don't worry, Aunt Iris, Wally conveyed with his eyes to the red-haired reporter, and she nodded, satisfied for the moment.
He continued, "The criminals have been subdued and are now in police custody. The artifacts in the Flash Museum are secure. Now, sorry everyone, but I've gotta run." The news reporters chuckled at the cliché pun, and Kid Flash zoomed away to finish the night's patrol.
As he sprinted down a residential street on the south side of Central City, he snatched up a brown bag resting on a house's porch with the Flash logo taped onto it. It was a gesture from the Flash Food Initiative. Sweet, snickerdoodles! (Here's the irony for you: the cookies were actually made by Ms. Marcie, the lunch lady, but neither she nor Wally knew that.)
Wally stuffed two in his mouth at once and absentmindedly rubbed his left arm.
Normally a cut would have healed by now, or it would have at least started to hurt less. But he could feel the skin and muscle starting to swell up underneath the fabric of his suit, and it throbbed under his touch. Owwww… he thought to himself. This was weird. It must have been deeper than he thought.
Finally, an hour and a half later, his patrol of Central City was over. Making sure none of the neighbors were watching, Wally stumbled into his Uncle Barry and Aunt Iris's house, unlocking the door with the key he kept in one of the cupboards in his gauntlets. He dragged himself into the kitchen and slumped into a chair, pulling back his cowl and rubbing his face in exhaustion.
Man, he was wiped.
But six bowls of Lucky Charms cereal later, Wally felt a little better. The front door opened, and his Aunt Iris called into the house. "Wally? Are you home?"
"In the kitchen, Aunt Iris!"
Yes, the Allen house was like Wally's second home. He spent just as much time here with his Aunt Iris and Uncle Barry as he did with his own parents, thanks to nights like tonight when missions and patrol ran later than expected. Because his aunt was used to feeding the Flash, she always had way more food than his parents did, so if Wally wanted to feel full after dinner for a change, he knew to come here where he was always welcome at their table.
It wasn't… it wasn't as if he didn't like his parents. As far as moms and dads go, his were fine, Wally decided. It was just that sometimes it was hard to communicate with them. They couldn't relate to him at all, didn't understand why he felt compelled to "run off into danger night after night, risking his life for strangers without getting paid a cent". But the Allen couple understood perfectly.
"Hey there, kiddo. Rough night, huh?" With a smile and a ruffle of his hair, the ginger woman always made him instantly feel better. But he noticed her attention dart straight to his arm, which was still bleeding slightly. "Want me to patch up your suit, Mr. 'It's Just a Scratch'?" She crossed her arms and raised an eyebrow. She always saw through his fibs; Wally didn't know why he ever tried lying.
He sighed and nodded. "That'd be great, Aunt Iris." He rose from his chair, wincing as he put weight on his arm, and walked upstairs to his room that his aunt and uncle let him use whenever he wanted. He even had spare clothes there.
As he carefully peeled his way out of the yellow suit, Wally got a good look at the gash where the boomerang had hit him. It was about four inches wide and really deep, maybe five inches. But it was already starting to stop bleeding, and it didn't look like there was any infection or contamination. It seemed just like a clean, straight slice, and with any luck it would be healed up by morning.
(Unfortunately, being a somewhat klutzy teenaged speedster meant that Wally had gotten uncannily proficient at assessing his own injuries.)
Wally changed into a loose, long-sleeved T-shirt and some pajama bottoms, then went back downstairs to give his suit to Aunt Iris so she could mend it. As he descended the steps, he caught a whiff of his aunt's famous tuna noodle casserole (it actually tasted fantastic, in case you were wondering), and his stomach growled. "Wow, smells great!"
"Ah ah ah," she shook her finger at him playfully. "No food for you until you wash and bandage up that gash on your arm." Nothing gets past that woman, Wally fondly thought to himself, but obeyed, pulling out the First Aid kit from a cabinet underneath a countertop. With sad expertise, he used alcohol wipes to clear away any invisible germs, grimacing slightly at the sting, and then dabbed on some Neosporin at his aunt's insistence. He finished up with a long, wide, white ace bandage that wrapped several times around his arm. There. No problem.
As Wally dug into his dinner, his aunt gave him a brief summary of the day's news. Apparently, while Wally had been at school, Uncle Barry had foiled three robberies, ended two attempted assaults, and even ran over to Star City to help out Green Arrow solve a case involving a series of stolen vats of chocolate. "Oh, and Roy says hi," Aunt Iris added with a smile.
Wally swallowed his mouthful of casserole and replied, "Man, I haven't seen the guy in forever. He and Dick and I should hang out this weekend. Can you get my mom's permission, Aunt Iris?"
The red-haired woman frowned disapprovingly. "You know I don't like lying to your parents, mister. Why don't you ask them yourself?"
She motioned for him to wash his dishes, and as he rinsed them with soap and water under the sink, he answered, "Because they'll say no! Please, Aunt Iris."
She sighed and nodded. "Alright, Wally, I'll see what I can do. Now why don't you get some sleep? It's late." Wally kissed her on the cheek good-night and dropped into bed, sleeping soundly.
November 17, 22:56 CST
In the Central City police station waiting to be transferred, the four Rogues who had been captured that evening were conferring quietly in their cell. Despite being caught in their schemes, the villains looked oddly pleased with themselves.
"So you're sure that Baby Flash was hit?" Mirror Master asked Captain Boomerang eagerly.
"Positive. Saw it with my own eyes," affirmed the Aussie proudly.
Captain Cold closed his eyes with satisfaction. "Excellent. Everything is going according to plan. Trickster, have you contacted you-know-who?"
The clown shrugged and rubbed the back of his neck, still uncomfortable about what they did to Baby Flash, and replied, "Yeah. Should be on his way."
Cold nodded. "Once he gets here and we pass along the information, we'll make our getaway when we're in transit to Arkham. He'll proceed with the next stage in the plan in the meanwhile and report back to us."
A few minutes later, a lithe figure pried open the window to the cell ward of the police station and dropped down to the floor soundlessly. Shaded eyes cautiously surveyed his surroundings, and then he stepped out of the shadows into the light. He was dressed in black and green, with a lime green hood over his head that cast a dark shadow over his face, and wore a silver belt around his waist. In his hand was, oddly enough, a silver flute. While he wasn't particularly tall or muscular, he still wore an aura of danger and hidden power. He approached the Rogues, stealthily and silently, with the stalking step of a hunter.
Spinning his flute around his fingers like a baton, he asked in a slow, low voice, "Did someone call for a Piper?"
A.N. So I'm back to civilization! Though, since this is winter break and I do want to spend time with my family, I still may not post every single day for the next few weeks, but I'll do what I can!
Let me know what you think of this chapter! Since it's so long, let me know if you see any errors or things that need fixing! Also, I would love some constructive criticism! I really love writing, and I want to improve, so any comments are always welcome!
A.N. #2 (1/17/15): Like all chapters in this story so far will be, this chapter is now edited with a YJ in-world timestamp (yay for actual canon continuity!) and slight tweaks for the sake of grammar, accuracy, and style. :D