I know it's been a while and I'm sorry. It's just been... crazy lately. Anyway, please enjoy!
The Watchtower: December 6, 2016
Lily took in everything with fascination. She'd seen pictures of the Justice League headquarters on the news, but never of the inside. It was so big and there was so much to see. There were more buttons than she could count and various screens to watch and so many heroes! Yes, her parents were Batman and Wonder Woman, but she'd never seen so many capes in her life!
It was a little overwhelming. Lily hovered closer to her father. He was stone-faced, but that wasn't really a surprise. He was like that at home too. Still, he laid a hand on her shoulder and gently squeezed.
"Daddy?" she questioned softly.
Batman's covered face turned to her. It was hard to picture her farther's cobalt eyes behind those soulless, white lenses. "Yes?" he responded quietly, though his voice was still rough. It gave her the impression that while he wasn't trying to scare her, he still had to be Batman. She understood.
Lily shifted. "Why are we here?" she asked. He and Mommy didn't bring her to the Watchtower. She'd been to the Metro Tower once, but only because Bruce Wayne had funded the construction and they both had made an appearance. She hadn't even gotten to go inside.
The corners of Batman's mouth twitched into an almost-smile. "Your mother and I have a meeting," he told her. "And we thought you'd like to see your friends."
She gasped softly, her head whirling around to see a familiar redhead. "Barry!" she squealed, running over to him. Without thinking, she launched herself into the eight-year-old's arms and pulled him in for a crushing hug. He didn't seem to mind as he hugged her back. Barry was her best friend and she was sure he was her favorite person in the world.
Except for Mommy and Daddy. But they didn't count because they were her parents.
But Lily soon released Barry when she caught sight of Rex and hugged him too. While Rex wasn't her best friend, he was still very special to her. Even though he was older, he was nice to her and never told her to go away. Whatever he was doing, he would include her too.
Unlike a certain boy.
Henry crossed his arms. "She has cooties," he told the other two as if it was obvious. Ugh, what was he, five? She would have thought that they were beyond cooties. Especially him and Rex since they were nine.
Barry seemed to take personal offense. "She does not!" he snapped, his warm dark eyes suddenly cold. He would get like that whenever Henry was mean to her. Or anyone really. When they were four and five respectively, a boy pulled on one of her pigtails at the park and Barry punched him. He'd gotten in trouble, but he hadn't cared at all.
Rex let go of her, but didn't move away as he rolled his eyes. "Cooties?" he questioned. "Really? How old are we, Henry?" Rex always acted older than he was which was good. It made up for Henry's immaturity.
Lily decided to change the subject, thoroughly passing the chance to argue with Henry. It happened far too often and always put her in a bad mood. "What do you think they're talking about?" she asked quietly.
Barry shrugged. "Dunno," he admitted. "Dad didn't say."
Henry rolled his eyes. "They're just having a meeting," he reasoned. "They have those all the time."
She mimicked his actions. "They have them once a week," she reminded him sharply. "They had one on Wednesday, remember?" She gestured to the group. "We're all here. We're never here."
Rex quickly caught on to what she was saying, he usually did. "They usually have babysitters for us," he continued. His green eyes sharpened a bit as he looked at the conference room door. "They didn't. Something's happening."
Barry fidgeted. "What do you think?"
Lily's lips pressed into a thin line. "Nothing good." She turned to Henry. As much as she didn't like him, his hearing range was a little farther than hers. "Can you hear anything?"
Henry looked ready to argue with her, but then his violet eyes narrowed. "They're... upset," he observed. "Your mom's yelling at Dad. Something about... Candace?" He shook his head, almost looking apologetic. "They're talking too fast."
She bit her lip. "I'm sure it's nothing," she tried to assure the others. It had to be nothing, right? Mommy and Daddy would tell her if something was really wrong. And even if they didn't, they were Batman and Wonder Woman. They would handle whatever it was because they were the best heroes in the world. Everything was going to be fine.
So why did her stomach suddenly feel so tight?
Wayne Manor: July 2, 2030
The subject of school came up sooner than she expected.
Lily had received an email from Neal Elementary School earlier that morning. Since it was a public school, it normally didn't do return forms like Gotham Academy had (the short time she'd been there before her parents found out she was a genius). But since Terry had been given to a new guardian, they wanted to know if he was going to stay at Neal or transfer someone else 'more fitting their lifestyle.'
It had made her stop and think. She honestly hadn't thought about Terry's education. She'd been so caught up in making sure he was adjusting comfortably that she hadn't even thought about where she was sending him to school come fall.
Her upbringing was telling her to send him to Gotham Academy. He was part of her family now, didn't he deserve the best of everything? Everyone in the Wayne family- including Dick and Tim- had been sent to Gotham Academy. It was what was expected.
But was that what Terry wanted? It was times like these when she had to force herself to think like her mother, not her father.
After pondering it, Lily decided to just ask him like a normal human being would. "Terry?" she called on the intercom. "Would you please come down here?"
A few minutes later, Terry shuffled into her study. He was wearing one of the new shirts she had bought him, but one of his old pairs of shorts. She could tell because they were slightly worn, but still in decent condition. "Am I in trouble?" he immediately asked. He was slowly opening up to her more, but was still walking on eggshells around her.
It was almost like he was afraid she would hurt him. The thought made her want to slap the absolute shit out of Oaken.
Lily smiled warmly at him. "Of course not," she assured him. How could he be, he never did anything. "I just wanted to talk to you about something." She paid very close attention to his face. "I got an email from your school asking if you'll be coming back this year."
Terry fidgeted slightly, fingers twitching at his side. "Are you gonna send me somewhere else?" he asked. His sapphire eyes were slightly hard with the question, which told her what she wanted to know.
She placed a hand on his shoulder. "Do you want me to?"
He stared at her for a moment before shaking his head. "All my friends are at Neal," he told her hurriedly. "Dana and Chelsea and Mike and Henry and- and I really don't wanna change schools."
Lily nodded, glad that she had talked with him. The parenting book she had recently bought told her that communication was one of the most important things. "That's fine," she replied gently. "I'll let them know that you'll be returning. Thank you for being honest with me, Terry."
Terry shifted. "Did you want me to go to one of those fancy schools?" he questioned.
She grimaced. "I was thinking about it," she admitted. Honesty, she recalled, was another important thing. And for all the secrets she was keeping from him, she wanted to be upfront with everything else. "Why?"
He shrugged. "Just asking," he answered nonchalantly. He smiled at her, then walked away. She watched his retreating form for a moment before typing up her response to his school stating that he would be returning.
Hotel Belle Monico: July 3, 2030
Lily's mother had been good friends with Queen Audrey of Kaznia. Lily herself had gotten along with the woman famously. The queen had given birth to three children; Diana (named after her mother), Henri, and James. Diana and Henri were intelligent and polite and she'd had no qualms about spending time with them. She liked people she could keep a conversation with without wanting to gouge her own eyes out.
James, however, she despised.
Not only was he a lecherous womanizer, he had also become a borderline criminal ever since his sister cut him off. Of course, when you were royalty it wasn't as though once could be arrested. But James had a history of gambling and swindling, skirting just outside the law.
Not to mention how many times he'd tried to get in her pants. It had taken all her willpower not to slap him whenever he'd come onto her. Sometimes, she really wished she didn't have her mother's face.
Unfortunately, he was in Gotham now, staying at the Hotel Belle Monico. He also knew her identity, which was just fucking great. It was also unfortunate that she had to check him out. If he was here, it couldn't have been good. And she would not have a spoiled prince making a mess of her city.
Nightingale easily slipped into the suite, the security system almost laughable. Her eyes darted across the dark foyer, searching for any signs of the pompous asshole. It wasn't long before he'd made himself known, sauntering into the kitchen in just a pair of boxers.
"James," she hissed, causing him to jump.
James whirled around, startled, but his lips curled into a grin when he laid eyes on her. "Lilian," he greeted in his thick accent, approaching her slowly. He was much too close for her liking, but she would not back away. That would show weakness. He brushed his fingers over her arm. "To what do I owe the pleasure?"
Nightingale slapped his hand away. "I want you out of my fucking city, Prince," she demanded.
His grin didn't fade. "Now, Lilian," he chided. "I'm simply a man here on business." He leered at her, eyes roaming over her slowly. "Though, I may be a little more willing to discuss it with you in my-"
The slits of her mask narrowed into a harsh glare (she'd learned the Batglare early, having to deal with Henry for her entire life). "Leave first thing tomorrow or Queen Diana is going to get a call from me tonight," she threatened. After all, his sister was the only one who could get him in line when even their mother couldn't. He was scared of her for whatever reason, though she wasn't quite sure why.
His blue eyes were suddenly hard. "I have diplomatic immunity," he reminded her testily, confirming her suspicions. He really wasn't that bright, was he? "I don't think the Kaznian ambassador would take kindly to this threat at the next United Nations meeting." His cocky smirk slipped back on. "Besides, I've not done anything wrong."
Nightingale raised an eyebrow. "No?" she challenged. Reaching into her belt, she took out a plastic baggie and slammed it onto the table. "Then would you mind explaining this?"
James pretended to be surprised. "They're bullets," he stated obviously. "What does that have to do with me?"
She rolled her eyes. "They're made out of keel metal," she told him, not that he already didn't know. "And where does keel metal come from, James?" He didn't answer, not that he needed to. Keel metal was native only to Kaznia, the nation had started manufacturing it around fifteen years ago with the resources of their land.
He didn't get a chance to respond as Nightingale lunged forward, shoving him up against the wall by his shirt. Anger suddenly coursed through her veins, her teeth practically grinding together. She was sure she had never hated the prince more than at that moment. But when she spoke, her voice was dangerously soft. "You're gonna tell me something, Prince," she hissed, her nails digging into his flesh.
"Psychotic whore," spat James venomously. "What do you want?"
Nightingale's lip curled. "Who killed Warren and Mary McGinnis?"
Oh, plot twist! Does James have something to do with the McGinnis' deaths? Maybe... Anyway, I hope you liked it and please review!