Theme: The Five Elements Stage #5 Spirit.
Pairing: Bart Allen/Cassandra Cain (I’m insane…)
Summary: “There are two of them, and Cassandra has given up on trying to count the numbers of the enemy.”
Author's Note: Why I opted for this pairing (particularly given recent events,) I have no idea, but what the hey, here we are, here we go. hope it’s believable. Takes place during a fictional apocalyptic state (my own making) just after the No Man’s Land arc.
So many apologies if it's late!!! v_v
NB: this fic is set well Pre the OMAC project, these machines are not omacs, but they are a form of prototype designed to him out and destroy Metas.
Oracle would have had… words for this, maybe. For what they were doing. For why they were here. Cassandra can’t for the life of her think what it would have been, but it would have been spoken with raised eyebrows and twitching jaw and a slight flinch in tendons, which Oracle couldn’t feel.
There are two of them, and Cassandra has given up on trying to count the numbers of the enemy.
She’s already calling them the enemy.
…pretty big mess, huh>’ Bart is lying with his elbows propped against the flat rock, head perched in his hands, as if they are not about to be killed. Cassandra tries to remember why she is here.
‘…I need someone who can knock out a dozen people in just three moves, Batgirl.’
A dozen people in three moves.
They’ll need to be able to beat a lot more than that.
‘This is… sui… suicide, Bart,’ she says after a moment.
‘Yeah. I know.’ Bart doesn’t sound sad when he says that. He doesn’t sound… accepting of it, either. Just as if… he knows. She can tell, because he says it with the flinch of his body against the cold stone wall of the ruin of the theatre, not with his tongue. He points down into the valley, as if he knows it well. ‘See that, there? that’s where they always seem to gather the most. I think it’s because the path is bigger down there.
‘They’re… they’re weird, but they only look out for metas., see.’
Which I’m not, Cassandra thinks.
Well, the bruises are starting to make sense. He’s tried this before, many times. He has always lost and come away barely with his life.
Cassandra Cain has never lost a battle. You can’t hit her.
You couldn’t hit Bart, either. More because it passed straight through him every time you tried. And he could hit back. Fast as light. But these things are faster. Bulkier, larger and more like moving plants. Organic metal and grown and steel rivets and other things Batgirl doesn’t have words for.
It’s like trying to catch Time.
They can do that, though. That’s what he’s doing, why they’re…
‘S’kinda like the dynamic duo, but Robin’s not down here,’ Bart grinned, but Batgirl traces wistfulness in his eyes. ‘You got me instead. So, y’ready?’
No, Batgirl thinks. Yes, her body commands.
They don’t last. But she knows they got further than they had before, because Bart was smiling more. Smiling, but not fighting very well. she was the fighter, he… ran into them and made them blow up.
It doesn’t last long. There are too many of them. Far, far too many.
Cassandra is the first one to have a knife-like blade pushed through her heart.
Impulse cries out.
The simulation ends.
Cassandra is barely tired, and she’s already dead. Her body tingles like fire, she lies there shaking. Reliving an old war. They lost in that war, too, but…
‘We’ve never gotten as far as that before,’ Bart mumbles.
Cassandra realises he’s half on top of her, where the last machine had thrown him, like one of oracle’s old rag dolls.
Bart is looking directly at her, and not actually moving. She sees the words he speaks in his body, but now she sees more than that. She sees… him.
It sounds… ridiculous, but it’s the truth. His aura, Kon would have called it. it’s gold, and shining in yellow eyes, beautiful and frightened and only a little bit defeated, and right up close to hers. It makes her shiver again, but not from fear.
‘If at first y’don’t succeed?’ he asks, softly. And… could he possibly be planning ahead.
He’s heavy, for someone so small. Cassandra pushes him gentle away and stands up, looking around at a frozen virtual battlefield, which will kill her a dozen more times before the night is done.
She thinks about a thousand dead people.
She reaches for Bart’s hand and then she looks up at a booth where she knows Tim –not Robin. Not now– is shaking his head.
‘Run it again.’