I do not own Young Justice.
She was only four when her daddy started dating Linda Park. Athena West was excited to see that her father had found someone. She didn't truly understand love as she is just a little girl. Athena thought love was a wonderful thing where a boy gives a girl a kiss on the cheek.
But she remembered meeting Linda for the first time. Linda was a nice lady. She was Korean, had shiny black hair and a slim body. But it was the look on Linda's face that made Athena uneasy. Athena may have been four then, but she wasn't stupid. Linda's eyes had a mix of shock and disappointment when they first saw Athena. Wally hastily told Athena to go to her room, but curiosity overtook her. She hid in the hallway to overhear their conversation.
"You didn't tell me you have a daughter," Linda said quietly.
"Well… I meant to tell you earlier…"
"Look, its okay, Wally. Just… tell me beforehand next time, okay?"
"…What happened to her mother?"
Athena's father didn't answer. Finally, he sighed and said, "I'd rather not talk about it."
She was seven when Wally and Linda married. She wasn't sure whether or not she should be happy. Athena still wasn't stupid. She noticed that ever since the wedding, whenever her daddy tried to smile of Linda, his smile always faltered. But it always was full of light whenever it was for Athena. Athena was a daddy's little girl. The wedding never changed that fact.
Linda wasn't entirely the best mother in the world. Yes, she had given the love and other necessities a child would need. But Athena wasn't sure if the love was truly genuine.
Her father still took her out on occasions. He would take her out to the park, buy her ice cream, and even take her to see his friends and their children. They were inseparable no matter what.
Athena was only ten when her twin siblings were born. For once, the smile Wally gave Linda was genuine. But Athena was still her daddy's girl.
Her aunt, Jade, came into her life. Wally was apprehensive on letting the assassin to take part in his daughter's life. But after Aunt Jade had reminded Wally of her mother, he reluctantly agreed.
Aunt Jade was an interesting lady. She would be here and there. Though Athena was aware of the fact that her aunt wasn't a truly good person, she loved her aunt strangely enough. Whenever Wally had trouble in the city and Linda working on a news report, Jade would slip into the house to watch over her niece. It's a secret agreement both Wally and Jade had since Linda didn't know of Jade.
Athena grew aware of the fact that she wasn't going to have her father's super speed. So her father went off to find Green Arrow, THE Green Arrow, so Athena could learn how to use a bow and arrow. She didn't know why her father chose the weapon of choice, but she loved it. It only took a month for her to hit a bull's eye. Her father laughed and patted her on the back as he proudly stood behind his daughter.
When she left to retrieve her arrows, he murmured, "Just like your mother…"
Athena finally found out about her mother the day before she turned fourteen. She grew up to be a rebellious teen. Strangely, Wally seemed to handle it well. And as for Athena, she still loved her father.
"So what do you want for your fourteenth birthday, baby girl?" Wally asked when they were in the car.
Athena thought about it. There was so much in her mind that she wanted. But there was one that she desired for most of her life. "Tell me about Mom."
Wally stayed silent. It had always been a sour subject when it came to Athena's real mother. He sighed, "Well, since you've waited long enough and that you asked for it, I'll tell you when we get home."
Athena nodded. They stayed silent until they arrived at their house. Wally led her into the kitchen where they sat down. Wally took out a pocket watch, "I never told Linda about this." He popped the lid open. Above the clock, there was a picture of a girl. She looked about eighteen years old. She had long blonde hair pulled into a pony tail and dark grey eyes. Wally looked at the picture intently, "Your mother's name was Artemis Crock." Athena looked at her father quizzically.
"We first met at the Cave, when we were only fifteen. The moment we laid eyes on each other, it was hate." Wally chuckled softly as he continued, "But that all changed at a mission in Bialya. We lost six months worth of our memories there. Your mother and I ended up alone. We couldn't remember each other, which made us meet for the first time again. But this was different; we actually worked together without bickering. Finally, your good old Aunt M'gaan found us and restored our memories. After that, we were fighting again."
"But when did you realize that you loved her?"
"Well, as time went by, we developed feelings for each other, even though we didn't realize that. But I realized it myself in a training simulation gone wrong."
He explained everything to Athena. He told her that he never admitted his feelings up until New Year's and that at the stroke of midnight, he scoped her mother up and kissed her. That was when it all started. He said that they dated ever since.
"But what happened to Mom?"
Wally sighed as he traced the picture with his finger, "We were only eighteen when your mother became pregnant. You were a real surprise to us back then. But heck, we decided to keep you. After nine months, you were born and we moved in together." He took out his wallet. He opened it to show her a picture. It was just a picture of Athena at a competition. But Wally slipped out another picture that was hidden behind and showed it to her. It was a tired-looking Artemis holding a bundle with a younger Wally behind. Athena peered at the photo, the bundle was actually herself. Wally continued, "After a few months, we finally settled into our new life. But your grandfather came into the picture…" Wally looked like he was about to cry, "Your grandfather was the villain Sportsmaster. One night, I was out patrolling and your mother was taking care for you. Sportsmaster had managed to track us down, so he broke into our apartment. Your mother saw this and took you into the nursery where she called me. After she did so, he broke the door. He came for you and your mother, Athena. He wanted to make both of you a weapon. But she stood her ground. Sportsmaster threatened to kill her if she didn't join the Shadows, but she refused. Out of rage, he killed her on the spot."
A tear fell down Wally's cheek, "I…I came as fast as I could. But I was too late. I was only able to save you…" He finally broke down and started crying. Athena too started crying, her mother had sacrificed herself to protect her. Both father and daughter hugged each other as they cried. Wally said, "I never stopped loving your mother, Athena, and I miss her every day. She would be really proud of you just as I am now."
They broke apart. Athena wiped away her tears, "W-why did you marry Linda in the first place then?"
"Because I knew you needed a mother figure. But I felt guilty for marrying her in the first place. I felt that I was taking advantage of her. Yes, I came to love her, but I didn't love as much as I loved your mother."
"I love your brother and sister too. But Athena, no matter what, you'll always be my baby girl."
He took her hand, "Remember this, Athena. Love can last forever no matter what."
Her father was right. Love can last forever. Athena grew up to be a member of the Justice League. She eventually fell in love with Dick and Zatanna's son, John Zatara Grayson. Their relationship was no different than Wally and Artemis'.
They married and had a family together. Wally stood in the background, smiling. Finally, he was truly happy for the first time in years. But tragedy struck. Wallace Rudolph West was killed on a mission in China. Though Athena was saddened, part of her was happy that her father could finally be reunited with her mother. Wally was buried besides Artemis in the Gotham graveyard. If you took a look at his tombstone, you can see the last words on the inscription saying:
Finally with his Spifire…