I'm not a gymnast either. I think I used the right term for what I visualised Dick using...
After he was hit with some sort of ray in the future Bart Allen a.k.a. Impulse discovered he could replicate himself, sort of, and thus create an army of clones that could double the already superspeed at wchich he can accomplish things. There has been a downside but that's not important here... Point is, can you imagine a room full of lanky, large footed hyperactive, superfast teenage boys?
Scary isn't it?
I'm woken by a sharp yelp and two voices softly snapping 'ouch!' I open my eyes and see both Willow and Dawn trying to stretch out unhappy, misused and sore muscles. I manage a short chuckle until I try to stretch and also end up grumbling. Finally the three of us make it the short distance to the kitchen. Dawn makes herself a chocolate milkshake while Willow and I unwisely dose up on Roy's version of coffee. I know he made it cause he always adds too much vanilla syrup to the highly concentrated contents of the pot but at this moment I don't care!
I'm staggering up the corridor trying to straighten out my protesting muscles as I make my way to my room and I pass the gym. I can hear the beams snapping as they are being expertly used. I know who it is and almost manage a type of movement vaguely similar to running. The coffee is starting to work but there's nothing like the grace Dick achieves on the uneven bars to get the blood pumping. He doesn't have an equal in gymnastics. It's a shame. I'd love to see him on the trapeze. He's so beautiful. I notice I'm not the only one to sigh and look around to see Jesse, Toni and Donna watching as well. Behind them I hear my sister and Willow shuffling away.
"What I don't get," Dawn was saying, "is how his muscles are letting him do that. Even Buffy is feeling the after effects of sleeping on the sofa and she's superhuman."
I can feel my muscles resetting themselves already and feel sorry for them both.
"Buffy? You have a telephone call."
"Thank you Garth," I smile as I take the cordless handset from him. "Buffy here."
"Hello Miss Summers.
"Hello Alfred. How are you?"
"I am very well thank you Miss. How are you this morning?"
"Not bad. Better than Wills and Dawnie."
"Indeed. I believe I could hear them in the background."
"Yes. You could," I grin. "What can I do for you Alfred?"
Alfred asks if he would be able to assist with our transition to life in Metropolis, at least for a day or two. How can I ever refuse him? Of course, I tell him. He's always welcome in our home.
Dawn's decided to stay at the Tower with Roy and Lian. I think it's good for them both. He's got a friend who can learn from his growth and she's got an adult friend who understands.
Willow went home to pick up her overnight bag and came back to the Tower several hours later than I expected her to. She'd called when she got home to say she was ok and that she was going to spend some time with Kyle before she came with me back to Metropolis. I packed while I waited. Then I wandered back to the gym but Dick had moved on to the computers. I sat with him for a while, noticing he was dressed comfortably though his mask was pasted on. I also noticed his packed bags near the door, out of the way of running feet of course. I glance at my watch and notice that Alfred is due... oh there he is at the pontoon. Dawn has bounced out to the wharf with Lian to exuberantly meet him and bring him inside.
Kyle is landing with Willow out there and they follow Alfred in. I meet them in the recreation/disaster room. "Hey everyone. Hello Alfred. Did Dawn tell you she's decided to stay here a little longer?" He manages to smile and nod at me while continuing to listen to Lian's loud story.
Lian shouts 'The End' and grins at Alfred who tells her it was a very interesting story and very well told. She smiles and says thank you before dragging Dawn away to see where Roy is.
Willow seems a bit more bouncey than usual. It's suspicious. I shall interrogate but later. Now we need to get going. I really hate all this driving. How I would love to be able to fly. Ooh, now there's a thought. Maybe I'll take pilot lessons or whatever they're called. I'll talk to Babs later.
I wave tiredly at the concierge of the building as Willow, mask-less Dick and I make our way to the elevators while Alfred parks the car. Long drives are boring and tiring even when you have good company. Oh and I love room service. The apartment smells clean and the windows are open... and the fridge is full of fresh food.
Dick claimed to have some phone calls to make so Willow and I chose to sit in the sun on the balcony where it's warmest though I can feel the chill of the approaching winter already in the air. Alfred arrives quietly and directs other staff on where to place our bags and other items. He approaches the balcony where Wills and I recline in very comfy sun lounges but Robin the First beats him to it and leaps about, jumping on me in his excited and happy way of greeting. It can be intimidating.
"Would you like a drink Miss?" he asks.
"Yes thank you Alfred. Tea would be lovely," I respond as I try to hug Robin and get him to calm down at the same time. I don't fly. I can't catch him if he accidentally leaps off the side of the building.
I hear Alfred smile as he says, "Master Bruce does not share your appreciation of the finer beverages of the world."
"That would be Giles' influence Alfred."
"Then I must send him a thank you note."
"Hey Buffy, check this out!"
I'm still chuckling as I turn around expecting to see Willow flying a pencil, instead I see a flying Willow, several storeys above the street in an outfit that looks remarkably like Kyle's and she's grinning like an idiot. It's infectious and I start grinning too.
"Oh my!" Alfred comments quietly and I hear the gentle rattle of china as he rights the tray he's holding and carefully places it on the small table beside my chair.
"It would appear dear friend that we have the newest Green Lantern in our midst," I say with a fond smile at the slightly flustered elder Englishman.
"Indeed Miss. One cannot help but wonder what Mr Rayner was thinking."
Willow lands gracefully in front of him and pokes her tongue out as her costume seems to melt away and leaves her in her jeans and t-shirt. "Mr. Rayner was thinking that perhaps it would be good if I could defend myself more quickly than with a magic spell."
"And a splendid thought it was," I smile. "How long have you been keeping that a secret?"
"Kyle gave me the ring yesterday after you all left the apartment. I've been out with him all morning so he could teach me about being a Green Lantern. We only came back to the apartment 'cause I was coming here with you, so it's all still very new but you and Alfred are the first to know after Kyle and me. How is Bruce?"
"He was in the cave when I left Miss Rosenberg."
"Impersonating Angel huh?"
"Yeah only this is a little more macabre. Selena, the Catwoman, is in some sort of casket a la Snow White."
"That's kinda icky," Willow says and scrunches her nose up.
"I have tried to persuade Master Bruce to other behaviours but he is too engrossed in his grief."
"When has he ever been any different Alfred? His entire purpose in life is driven by some form of grief."
"Hey Alfred! Did I just see Kyle outside?" Dick asked as he came out onto the large balcony, to join us by the outside table and our teapot.
"That was me!" Willow bounces.
Dick grins broadly at my bouncing friend. "Excellent! But what about Sage? Will she disappear now?"
"Oh no!" Willow exclaimed, alarmed. "I'm not really sure how it will all work but I've only had the ring for a few hours which reminds me that I should tell Babs and Dawn."
"Tell Babs and Dawn what?" Bruce asks through the speakerphone that Dick is carrying, trailing the lengthy cord behind him.
"That Kyle gave Willow the Green Lantern ring," I explain grinning.
I think Bruce grunted.
"He could give Angel lessons and Angel's had eighty years to perfect his routine," Willow mumbled under her breath. "Can I use your computer Buffy? Babs will be needing me online again while we research this military thing."
"Sure Wills. You know where it is."
Dick turns and carries the phone back into the lounge room and continues talking quietly to Bruce.
"Ok. Come on Robin the First, let's harass the great computer Sage while she tries to work." Robin bounces, literally, across the lounge room from the kitchen where he was hoping for a snack from me and we go into Willow's room/study. I think Alfred is a lot softer on Robin the First than he lets on.
Willow logs into her laptop computer and begins downloading her mail. Before the first five e-letters have completed their cyber journey Oracle appears on the screen and melts into Bab's face. "Buffy? We've, Dawn and I have spotted an anomaly in space that seems to have very similar properties to the remains of the anomaly that brought the vampire Titans to our world."
"Oh?"p>"I suggest investigating. The JLA are otherwise occupied and getting the Titans together and out to get you is a bit tricky. Young Justice are on their way with Impulses spaceship."
"Impulse has a spaceship?"
"Yeah. They went interstellar to help a king regain his throne... Anyway he gave Impulse the ship. They're on their way now."
"Did you know about that?" I ask Willow.
"Nope but it scares me. Impulse has means of Space Travel..."
"Giles has suggested that the portals may have been occurring since the incident in Metropolis with Lex and that they may be mirror occurrences because the ritual wasn't completed."
"We have to deal with this till that beast comes to eat Lex?"
Babs shrugs. "It would appear so."
"They're here," Willow comments and packs up her laptop, following me out to the balcony where not only a Young Justice manned spaceship waits but also a fully costumed Nightwing.
"Come on then," I tell him as we climb through the open doorway. I only get a moment to notice that my sister is on board before Impulse demonstrates why he should stick to running and never be permitted to drive/ride a vehicle. Ever! The G-Forces are a bit weird at first but I manage to adjust. Then I get my first look at our tiny planet from outer space for the first time and I'm amazed. It's so beautiful from here, and so peaceful.
"Anyone know where we'll end up?"
"No idea," Kon grins at me.
"Fantastic," I reply with a smile.
"Portal dead ahead Captain," a gold version of Impulse reports to the normal--though I doubt that word can ever honestly be applied to Bart Allen--Impulse and we accelerate into the purple swirly thing and come out into a two dimensional, primary coloured, barely shaded world.
"The Powerpuff Girls?"
"Ok what's going on?"
"Not a clue Dawn," Cassie says slowly as we drift past the bewildered kindergarten superheroes and straight on into the next portal... and into a mini crash. We weren't very far off the ground so it was more of a soft belly landing but a few things seem to be seeing the light of day that shouldn't so while Impulse makes speedy repairs we get to stretch our legs. It's mossy, a bit slippery and smells like rotting vegetables. I think we're in a clearing in a jungle of some sort. A commotion followed by a woman dashing out of the trees drew our attention away from our surroundings and the portal high above us.
"Who are you supposed to be? Lara Croft?" Cassie asked acerbicly.
She looked mildly stunned for a nanosecond before turning her smile on Dick and smoothly answering, "Yes. Who are you supposed to be?"
At this point Superboy started to drool. It wasn't pretty. Something whizzed passed Lara's ear and she leapt to her left and behind a large, once finely carved boulder, shouting at us to duck. Superboy didn't move.
"That's really Lara Croft," Dick said in a stage whisper.
Superboy nodded dumbly. Dawn giggled as Willow used a ring-construct klennex to wipe his chin when Lara ran past.
"This is way too weird."
"It's a dream," Superboy said dreamily, ignorant of the stampede of men and guns in pursuit of Lara.
"Your *wet* dream maybe but this could quickly become nightmarish for me."
"It could become nightmarish for Kon too if it really is one of his wet dreams," Dawn commented. Kon's head whirled on his neck to glare at my sister who smiled innocently in return.
"Finished!" Impulse shouts. We all make a run for the ship and Kon is the last through the door as we lift off. We make it into the portal as it begins to close and come out in miniature in what looks like a giant junk store. On the counter beside us are a bunch of used looking toys and a large pink and white fluffy cat.
"Bagpuss?" Dawn asked with a mix of wonder and astonishment.
"What the hell is a Bagpuss?" Lobo demands as a new portal opens almost immediately and drags us through.
"He's a British kids tv character. Spike made me watch some videos of the show once as a punishment. It was horrible." Dawn buried her face in Tim's shoulder trying to block out the memory. She can be so funny sometimes.
"Is it just me or do we seem to just be hurtling randomly through these realities?"
"Where is Jerry O'Connell when you need him huh?" Willow grinned.
"Where is a quantum-physics savvy scientist when you need one?" Tim mumbled.
"Or just McGyver? He was a physics teacher... Ooh, here we go again. Bart what are you--oof. That was a bit rougher than I was expecting," Willow commented letting Cassie help her stand properly.
"BART!! Where have you taken us this time?"
There was a tremendous clanging and clunking from the cockpit then Bart stood in front of Tim. "I'll fix it," he smiled. "Don't worry about anything."
"Too late," Tim said from behind his hand.
"It could be worse." This statement caused everyone to glare at me. "Well it could!" I protested. "Of course I have absolutely no idea how but I'm sure it could be."
"What is it?" Dick shouted as he led us toward the noise.
"Megatron! Not the cool ex-Beast mode type Megatron, the original I-got-out-of-the-wrong-side-of-my-attempt-to-rule-Cybertron Megtron."
"How do we get out of this?" I shout.
"We're analysing it now," my sister quickly explains as she continues to work on the laptop she's plugged into the ship.
"Got it!" Willow exclaims and runs through to the cockpit where she argues with Bart for control and accelerates us to top speed before we crash through the portal. We're all forced off our feet. Luckily for Kon and Cassie this means they float. The rest of us land on our butts as Willow seems to force her way through a reluctant portal and back into a city that looks like our Gotham.