kat8cha: (Superheroes - Garth is flippy)
[personal profile] kat8cha
Title: Rice and Beans
Prompt: I love angsty romances. Right now, I'm just dying for some Artemis/Roy action.
Pairing: Artemis/Roy gen, hints of others
Rating: PG
Warnings: No warnings!
Summary: Artemis and Roy have been captured by The Light and must rely on each other in order to get free.

The cell was small and dark, the only light coming from the barred window set in the door and the crack at the bottom. Artemis didn't bother squirming, there was no use in squirming, her father was the one who had taught her all the tricks on how to escape being tied up but he had apparently not taught her all the tricks. Her hands were bound uselessly behind her back in thick manacles that prevented her from reaching the locks on either cuff and the heavy chain on her ankle manacles prevented her from at least putting her tied up arms in front of her. The chain was anchored to the wall and it left her with little to do but lie there and stare at the crack under the door.

The chains clinked when Red Arrow moved and he moved a lot. There were other noises caused by his movements, the scrape of skin across rough stone, heavy thumps when he tried to raise his legs, the soft gravelly noise of his armored shirt rubbing against the floor. He was closer to the door and when he moved in a certain way the light reflected off of his shirt.

Artemis closed her eyes, remembering the look in Con-Supe-the clone's eyes when he turned on them. The transporter had been lighting up, Red Tornado had fallen over, sparking, and the virus that had infected the computer had shut everything down, the last message it had delivered being a set of latin words that echoed in the control room.

His eyes had been so blue for a moment before the transporter announced the arrival of Sportsmaster, then they had glowed so very, very red.

"Talk to me."

Red Arrow's words shocked her a bit and Artemis jumped as far as the chains would allow, she scooted backwards and her back hit the stone wall. At least she didn't have to worry about spiders, the inside of the cells had been clean enough to eat off of, far cleaner than Artemis' room at home.

"What?" She asked, incredulous. She had to have misheard him or was imagining things. That had to be it, right? Or maybe the cells were haunted… no, she wasn't that freaked out. She could admit there might be ghosts (she wasn't Kid Flash) but she wasn't going to start imagining them just because she was captured by bad guys (her FATHER) and tied up in a dark room. "You've got to be kidding me."

"Do I sound like I'm kidding?" Red Arrow never sounded like he was kidding. Artemis had never heard him sound anything but upset. Then again, her interactions with Red Arrow had been few and far between. There had been their first meeting, the threat, that mission a few months ago… and then he had showed up just before everything went to hell in a hand-basket.

"Why?" Her voice sounded so weird. It wasn't echoing but it didn't sound normal, it was like the walls were so greedy for noise they were eating up the sound of her talking. Creepy.

"Maybe I hit my head too hard during that fight," Possible, Superboy had tossed Aqualad into Red Arrow and the two of them had gone down hard. Red Arrow had gotten up after that, even though the arrows from his quiver had scattered all over the place, he'd picked them up to shoot and kept shooting. Artemis hadn't even seen what took him out of the fight; he had still been going when the brainy guy that Miss Martian had fought in Bialya had done something that knocked her out. "Or maybe I just like hearing the sound of your voice. You've worked with G.A., surely you picked up some chatter."

"You know as well as I do that I wasn't really his sidekick." Artemis muttered, unable to make out Red Arrow's face but assuming he was sneering. He seemed like the type to sneer even when his voice sounded deadly serious. "So does anyone listening to this conversation. Sportsmaster told everyone he was my dad." It had shocked Kid Flash enough that Cheshire had been able to take him out, it had surprised Robin too, though he had covered it up. Then of course there was Black Manta unveiling that he was Aqualad's father which had been a bit of a let-down. Kaldur hadn't even let that faze him, then again, he hadn't known, maybe he thought Black Manta was lying.

Red Arrow snorted and there was another of those clinking-dragging noises. "So, I wasn't his sidekick either."

"Partner schmartner." Artemis rolled onto her back and winced before she rolled back onto her side. "You were a sidekick and everyone's admitted it but you." Silence, and more clinking. God, Red Arrow was the kind to persevere wasn't he? They'd searched him for all of his weapons; he couldn't have any means of escape. Cheshire had even taken her belt.

And hadn't that been a laugh. Ew.

The silence stretched on and Artemis found herself missing the snarking. It was better than nothing, right? Better than the clinking shifting noises and the sounds of their breathing. "Fine, so I worked with him a little. It's not like he taught me to snark at the enemies. He spent most of his time missing you, heck if I know why."

"Probably because I snark at the enemies." Clink, shift, drag… a louder clink. "Fine, so let's not talk about G.A. Sportsmaster really your dad?"

This earned him an eyeroll, though he couldn't see it. "No, I was conceived totally by my mom, I sprung from her head after a really bad headache." She did little air quotes with her fingers while she snarked at him. She could almost make out shapes on the ceiling, scratches in the rough stonework that almost looked like faces or animals or maybe food. God, she was so bored.

"That explains your name." Red Arrow even managed to sound amused this time, not angry at all. Maybe he was smiling. He would probably look cute if he smiled, or if he just stopped frowning so much. "Though I would have thought you'd be named-"

"Well maybe Artemis is a code name. We all know your real name isn't Red." Seriously even when they weren't actively fighting they were irritating each other. Ugh, he just got so under her skin.

"Might as well be." Clink-cling, slow dragging noise and a scuffle. "Fine, we won't talk about parents. What's your favorite food?"

"Why do you care?" She squirmed and arched in her chains. Why did it matter? They were chained up in a tiny dark little cell and the only reason they might not kill her was because of her parents. They'd mentioned 'a procedure' earlier so even if they didn't kill Red Arrow who knew what they'd do to the guy. Torture him? Brainwash him? Clone him and then kill the original? The Light was full of sick bastards like her father and Ra's al Ghul so who knows what they'd consider appropriate treatment of a captive. "Don't give me that 'I hit my head' bee-ess, what are you up to."

"You clearly haven't been a hero long." Red Arrow snorted in the dark and then, then, then he actually laughed. "You'd know that this never lasts long. If they're going to tie you up they have plans, if they have plans you have a chance to escape. I've never known a hero to get captured by a villain and not make it out."

There was something more to that statement, an underlying tension, maybe hidden grief. Artemis didn't want to deal with that, though, wasn't this type of situation a cliché? Dump all sorts of random emotional information on your former enemy and turn them into a friend! Definitely a cliché. "Fried risotto balls."

Silence filled the cell, then a short bark of laughter. "What did you say?"

"My favorite food," Artemis snorted. At least Red Arrow wasn't Kid Flash. Kid Flash would probably be in peals of laughter over the word balls. "It's fried risotto balls." Another second of silence and then a clink.

"Go on." Clink, clink, clink. God, didn't he ever stop trying?

"There's this Italian… actually, I think it's Sicilian, deli down the street from us. They're pretty small, mostly dried food imports and some meat but they have some prepared foods. I like their fried risotto balls."

Clink, clink, a slight pause. "I have no idea what risotto is, I hope you know that."

"Oh." Well, she guessed some people weren't big rice eaters. Artemis had had all sorts of different kinds of rice, especially the kinds of rice that came in a box and all you needed to do was add water and the seasonings the box came with. Some nights her mom didn't want to cook, other nights her mom was out working late and she had to fend for herself. "Risotto's… it's sort of rice cooked in soup until creamy. With the fried balls it's packed together and there's cheese and tomato sauce and meat stuffed in. They deli serves them pretty big, about the size of my fist, so they're a good lunch or something to pick up for dinner." Some nights her mom didn't even want to think about making food, and some nights neither did Artemis. They kept for a day or two also, so she could buy a few and eat them for lunch.

"They sound good." Maybe she should start calling him Roy, if they were going to share stories about their lives. "I'm not a big rice eater, my preferred starch is noodles."

Artemis cracked a smile. The mental image of Roy slurping down a big plate of spaghetti was kind of funny. "Any sort of noodles?"

"Fettuccini, spaghetti, rotini," Clink, clink, shuffle and suddenly Red Arrow was leaning over her. Leaning over her and holding one finger to his lips in the universal sign for 'don't say anything'. She couldn't quite help the surprised gasp though. "Macaroni, you know, noodles."

He was holding onto a few tiny pieces of metal that glittered in the light from the door. She bit her bottom lip and met what she assumed was his eyes (it was hard to tell with his mask) and nodded. Then she rolled onto her front and offered him her bound wrists.

"Mom and I don't eat a lot of noodles. She made spaghetti once but burned the pot, we didn't try that again." One warm, rough hand held onto one of hers (had he taken his gloves off or had The Light taken them?) and there were the familiar clinking noises that now she knew had been him picking the locks of his manacles. How had he done that? Where had he hidden the picks?

"G.A.'s a big fan of chili, we've had chili-mac more times than I can count. Then there's also lasagna chili, chili alfredo, chili parmesan… If he created a food pyramid chili would be at the bottom and everything else would have to fight for space." He got her manacles off faster than he had gotten his off. It was probably because now he knew where to push and he could use both hands without practically breaking his wrists.

"Eww, that sounds gross." Not too gross but… Artemis couldn't even eat the same cereal every day of the week. What would it be like to eat chili all the time? The manacles fell away from her wrists and Roy caught them before he set them to the side. Gratefully she sat up and shifted so he could get her ankles. "So, chili is your favorite food? Or is it noodles?"

"Neither." Ankles done Red Arrow stood up and held a hand in front of her face. "I'll forestall your guessing by offering to cook it for you." Artemis took her hand and let him pull her to her feet, then he squeezed it and cocked his head towards the door. Carefully they both shuffled towards it. "When we get rescued."

"Oh yeah." Artemis glanced through the barred window one way while Red Arrow looked the other. Assured the hallway was cleared they traded a look, Artemis stayed as look out while Red Arrow knelt down and felt along the edge of the doorway. "Rescued, sure. G.A.'s gonna charge in and kick the League of Shadows butt."

Roy snorted. "I was thinking more along the lines of Batman."

"When this is all over," Artemis kept her eyes trained on the hallway, "I'm giving you a kiss."

"When this is all over," Roy was definitely smiling, he had to be, "I'll tell you to wait till you're not jailbait."


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June 2012

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