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Hail the Rogues!

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Fic -- Lessons Learned [Jun. 29th, 2008|06:51 pm]
Hail the Rogues!


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Title: Lessons Learned
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 1774
Characters: Captain Cold, the Top, Golden Glider, Mirror Master I, some Rogue cameos.
Summary: Len has to reconcile himself to some annoying realities.
Warnings: Some profanity.
Author's Notes: Story #7. No scans to go with this, really, but here's one that shows just how much Len loves Roscoe.

Len was adjusting the settings on his cold gun when his sister Lisa came skipping into his apartment, all starry-eyed and cheerful.
“Oh Lenny, I have great news!” she declared excitedly, a dreamy look on her face, and he waited expectantly. “Roscoe and I have started dating!”
“…Wait, who? Not Roscoe Dillon, right?”
Yes, Roscoe Dillon,” she scowled. “So what’s wrong with that? He’s amazing…he’s so smart, and so hot, and such a good kisser…”
“He’s weird and he’s obsessed with tops,” Len interrupted, afraid she was going to go into more detail about the hotness and kissing. “And has a stick up his ass the size of a baseball bat.”
“He does not! He’s funny and he takes me places, and he cheers me on at all of my shows. You hardly ever go see me perform.”
“I don’t want you dating a criminal, Lisa. Most of `em can’t be trusted.”
“That’s very funny, coming from you,” she retorted angrily. “Besides, you don’t approve of any man I go out with…you just want me to sit at home alone until I’m old. Well too bad --- if you can date, so can I!”
She stormed out of the apartment, and with a pained sigh, he went to get a Tylenol for his developing headache.

“What the freakin’ hell…” Len muttered to himself, shaking his head with disgust. “Roscoe?!” In all honesty, he was disturbed by the idea of his sister dating any of his colleagues.
Well, I guess it could be worse…it could be Heat Wave. I’d never hear the end of it from that guy. And Digger would cheat on her the first chance he got, he consoled himself. At least Roscoe isn’t a pervert…as far as I know…and I’ve never seen him passed out in a gutter or anything.
However, he was absolutely going to talk to the man and give his opinion on the matter. It was his duty as Lisa’s big brother.

Some of the Rogues were gathering at Paul Gambi’s to plan a joint robbery, and Len kept an eagle eye on Roscoe during the entire meeting, watching for odd or creepy behaviour. Nothing he did seemed particularly out of the ordinary; he was his usual arrogant but reasonably friendly self. But after the group had finished hashing out the plan, Len motioned for Roscoe to join him in a side room.
“Yes?” Roscoe asked with a calm demeanour when they were alone, trying to hide the fact that he was suddenly nervous. He had a feeling Cold did not approve of his new relationship.
“So is it true that you’re dating Lisa?” Len asked with a steely glare, eyes boring into the other man’s face.
“Yes. Is it any business of yours?” Roscoe inquired, eyebrow raised, and Len moved closer.
“You bet it is. If I ever catch you hitting her, cheating on her, being a jerk to her, or even making her cry, I’ll beat the shit out of you. That’s a promise,” Len said in a threatening tone. “She’s my sister and she’s all I got.”
“Message received,” Roscoe replied evenly, but with obvious discomfort. “You needn’t worry, my intentions are honourable.”
“As honourable as you get,” Len snorted.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t realize you were Citizen of the Year, Leonard.”
“Don’t get smart with me. Just remember what I said, and treat her right. Otherwise I’ll freeze your nuts off.”
Len stalked out of the room, and Roscoe sarcastically saluted him as he left.

When it came time to pull the bank heist, the other Rogues noticed the tension in their ranks. Roscoe and Len spoke tersely to one other, avoiding each other’s company whenever possible, and finally Sam got fed up with it.
“Are you two going to have a problem?” he demanded, and they shook their heads mutely, looking suspiciously at each other out of the corner of their eyes.
“Why you blokes so pissy, anyway?” Digger asked, and both muttered a fake excuse. Neither wanted to get jeered by the others over the issue with Lisa.
“Then pull your heads out of your butts and let’s get moving!” Sam ordered, and everyone readied their weapons for the job.

When the six Rogues burst into the bank, they thought they had it made. The place was supposed to be loaded with money before it was put in the time-locked vault, and there were enough of them that they shouldn’t encounter any opposition. But they hadn’t bargained on a trigger-happy cop.
“Watch it!” Digger shouted as they were barraged with bullets, and most instinctively hit the floor. Len thought to create an ice barrier in front of himself, and Sam darted behind a structural column, from which he disarmed the cop with his mirror gun. The officer fled.
“Everyone okay?” Mick asked as he picked himself off the floor, and there came a slight groan.
“No, I’ve been hit,” Roscoe grimaced, clutching at his arm. A red stain was spreading across his green and yellow uniform. “I’ll be all right, though. Just get what we came for.”
“Mick, Digger: we’ll load the money. Len, you stay with him,” Sam instructed, and Len grunted in annoyance.
“Like hell! Why me?”
“Because you can watch for reinforcements, and hold them off,” Sam said brusquely. “And if his arm gets bad, you can freeze it.”

With that, the other three ran off to gather all the money they could carry, and Len stood impatiently with his squatting colleague. Roscoe was still holding the wound on his arm, and blood was starting to ooze through his fingers.
“Can’t believe you were dumb enough to get shot,” Len said with a scornful expression. “They should’ve shot you in the head, let some of that air out.”
“Yes, that’d make Lisa happy,” Roscoe replied testily.
“She’d be a lot happier with somebody else.”
“Why don’t you let her make that decision?”
“Because I’m trying to look out for --- holy shit!”
Bullets suddenly whizzed over their heads, and they turned to look at the source, only to discover an entire team of cops at the front door. Len fired his cold gun at them, icing over the doorway, but they’d come prepared for him --- they had a large acetylene torch that they were already using to melt the ice wall.
“We’d better get the hell out of here,” Roscoe declared, worried. He already felt light-headed from the blood loss or shock.
“Yeah,” Len agreed. “Scudder! Time to go!” he shouted. Somebody made a muffled sound of acknowledgement from the other room, so Len offered a hand to his injured comrade.
“C’mon you dumb fucker, let’s move,” he grumbled, and helped up Roscoe, who was pale and seemed a bit unsteady on his feet. The two of them ran for the back door, which Len froze and then kicked in; they didn’t bother to wait for the others, who would surely be along shortly.

There was an emergency getaway car parked a few minutes away, and Len figured this counted as an emergency. Things had definitely not gone as planned. When the duo reached it, Roscoe simply collapsed onto the back seat, and his colleague realized just how badly he was bleeding. Len sat in the driver’s seat, waited a minute for the others to arrive, and then took a long look at the motionless man in the back.
“Okay Lisa, I hope you appreciate this…” he muttered, and drove for their hideout.

There were doctors who served the Rogues and other underworld criminals for hefty fees, and fortunately they made housecalls. It didn’t take an experienced physician long to stop the bleeding, and he could even do a makeshift transfusion on site. An hour after the escape, Roscoe was resting comfortably on a couch at the Rogues’ hideout, drifting in and out of sleep.
“He’ll be fine,” the doctor told Len. “Change the bandages in a few hours, and I’ll leave you my bill.”
“Yeah, thanks,” Len sighed, looking at the high price. However, it was worth it for the Rogues to avoid hospitals and the police. He turned on the TV to see if there was any news about their missing comrades, and learned they’d been arrested, just as he suspected.
They’re gonna be pissed, he thought to himself, but that wasn’t really his problem at the moment. It was time to call Lisa.

Lisa arrived as a whirlwind of distress and worry, frightened by her brother and boyfriend’s close call.
“Oh my God, can I visit him?” she asked Len tearfully, and he nodded.
“He’s sleeping, but he’ll be glad to see you. And just so you know…I ain’t changing his bandages.”
“Thanks Lenny,” she said, kissing him on the cheek. “For looking after him. I know he’s not your favourite person.”
“I wouldn’t want to see you sad, sis,” he replied honestly, and she smiled gratefully at him before going upstairs.

Roscoe was dozing shirtless on a bloodstained couch, a ratty old blanket pulled over him. Lisa made a face at the bloody uniform and towels that were strewn about the room, and picked them up before they started attracting insects or other creatures. In fact, the entire hideout was fairly disgusting, a sure sign of bachelors. Once she’d disposed of the soiled fabrics, she gently shook Roscoe until he opened his eyes and smiled at her.
“You’re a welcome sight,” he greeted her, and she leaned down to kiss him.
“I was so worried,” she confessed unhappily. “How are you feeling?”
“Weak…very sore…but I’m all right. Don’t let me drag you away from the ice show. You should be getting back soon.”
“I took the night off! Nothing’s more important than my man, of course. I’m going to pamper you like crazy,” she scolded him fondly, massaging his good shoulder.
“Well…I can’t complain about that…” he admitted. The attention was nice. “I could really use something to drink, hon; feels like I’ve been swallowing sand.”
“Your wish is my command,” Lisa said cheerfully, and went to fetch a glass of water.

From his vantage point in the hall outside, Len shook his head and smiled; the couple did seem to enjoy each other’s company, and acted surprisingly normal. He knew what he’d been afraid of --- his parents’ relationship --- and though it was obviously early, Roscoe and Lisa didn’t seem dysfunctional or unhappy or abusive. Yet. He was going to continue keeping an eye on them for his sister’s sake, to make sure she was safe. As he’d said earlier, she was all he had. And he would always watch out for her.


[User Picture]From: axolotl_lan
2008-06-29 11:33 pm (UTC)
Awww!~ They are so cute together! I totally can see the teasing from the other rogues after the intial jerk we were arrested because of you two *because that is how they will see it* and then Roscoe and Len will owe them all drinks when they get out of jail.
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-06-30 04:59 pm (UTC)
Heh, thanks :) Yes, I imagine it'd be awkward when the others get out of jail, but Len and Roscoe would be all "He/I was injured!" and hope that'd calm them down ;)

Also, they're probably both in for some teasing when the others find out about Lisa/Roscoe...
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[User Picture]From: runenklinge
2008-06-30 07:43 pm (UTC)
awww...Len is so cute when overprotective. The supervillain-argument wasn´t really thought through, was it?

As he’d said earlier, she was all he had. And he would always watch out for her.

damn you chillblaine...
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-06-30 08:41 pm (UTC)
awww...Len is so cute when overprotective. The supervillain-argument wasn´t really thought through, was it?

No, not really ^_^ That was kind of grasping at straws, though still a valid point. It wouldn't surprise me if Len demanded Lisa be treated better than he would treat a girlfriend of his own, for instance.

damn you chillblaine...

Alas, he couldn't watch her when he was dead :\
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[User Picture]From: lukuma
2008-07-03 04:11 am (UTC)
Sam mention!!! (He doesn't get enough love)

Aww, I loved it so much. I really like your Roscoe and Lisa fics, and you write Len so very well ^^ I loved his arguements
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-07-03 06:08 am (UTC)
I love Sam too; he was so awesome. Unfortunately I haven't thought of much to do with him yet. However, I've noticed he often came up with the plans and directed the others when they worked together back in the old days, so I made him the one (mostly) in charge.

Thank you very much, I'm so glad you like them! (was starting to wonder if anybody does). I very much enjoy exploring the interplay between Len and Roscoe; they have a really interesting relationship. And between Lisa and Roscoe. And between Len and Lisa. So I guess you could say I really like writing the three of them... :]
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[User Picture]From: thalyamuse
2008-07-20 03:53 pm (UTC)
I wish I had a big brother like Len.. Loved Roscoe's sarcasm and all the little details you throw in ("a sure sign of bachelors", etc), too! Just wondering, who was the sixth Rogue on the bank job?

On a couple of technical notes, something that struck me was your gift for precision word choice which lends your prose a crisp economy. I also think your set-up was especially strong, here. Sometimes your fic has firm beginning and ending bounds already laid out, continuity-wise, but here where you're operating with a little more free space, it was noticeable to me how you take care to establish Len's conflict and work it tenaciously through the body to arrive at a very satisfying conclusion.
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-07-20 05:46 pm (UTC)
Oh lordy, I can't believe I miscounted O_o Didn't even notice it until you pointed it out. Math has never been my strong point, but that's just sad. Maybe I should edit...thanks for catching that!! Or maybe Wizard was there but just had nothing to say -_-

When I was a kid, I was really glad I didn't have any brothers (because all the brothers of the girls I knew were so *annoying*!), but now I kind of wish I had one.

I'm anal enough that I usually re-read a fic repeatedly (that's why they take a while to be posted), and will tinker with the wording here and there until satisfied. A fairly tedious process, although it helps with the technical quality. And you're certainly right about the freedom provided by less-continuity fics, which I definitely do enjoy sometimes. I just need to keep the plot/story on track, and not let it run away from me, as it does from time to time.

Thanks very much for your comments; I'd missed them!
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[User Picture]From: thalyamuse
2008-07-20 07:41 pm (UTC)
Well 5 or 6 Rogues is still a lot to juggle as it is.. One of 'em was bound not to pipe up (unless they were doing a pun rollcall, maybe?).

All I have is my little brother - I wonder if I would've turned out differently if I'd had a sister, because I wound up being an extra wheel when he had his friends over to play video games and I never really learned how to fit into a normal girl-y mode. Even then a little brother doesn't naturally lend itself to big brother protectiveness..

Well, even with all that freedom for tangents, it felt like you seized on the chance to tell this story, very much keeping it on track. It seems like you have a natural affinity for writing Len, and especially his interactions with Lisa and Roscoe.

I'm glad to provide feedback! Just, ever since I took time off for my brother's wedding at the beginning of June, I've been very dopey-headed and work-oriented more than usual (new boss, some new training, some new programming bunnies), and it's taken a fair amount of effort to get back on track - I'm still a bit addle-brained trying to figure out how to accomplish all the things I want/need to do in a 24-hour day. Like, I would be extremely happy if I can get a post up on my LJ tonight detailing Muse (some things you and Rune have brought up on Comixfan and here make me think now's the right time to bring up this long-running project I've been mulling over for months), but I'm not sure if I can work that quickly or if other tasks today will let me have enough time.
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-07-20 08:27 pm (UTC)
"Sound off, guys!"

"It'll be a cold day in Hell!"
"I'm the trickiest one there is!"
"Get a load of this song!"
"You're in for stormy weather!"
"I'm at the top of the heap!"
"This'll be a sizzler!"
"Reflect on this!"
"I always come back!"

Oh god, make it stop...

I only have a little sister. She'll be 30 in December, and she's still bratty, alas.

It's funny, I never set out to write Len all that often, but he does come fairly easily for me. Not sure why. Perhaps it's because I'm always crabby too ^_^

Hopefully life will be less crazy for you from now on. Looking forward to your project!
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[User Picture]From: thalyamuse
2008-07-22 05:57 am (UTC)
"It'll be a cold day in Hell!" - Len would know, I guess?
"I'm the trickiest one there is!" - aka, the last words Axel ever hears.
"Get a load of this song!" - Can it be downloaded?
"You're in for stormy weather!" - Tonight's forecast specially brought to you by Mr. Stormy himself!
"I'm at the top of the heap!" - 'Hope it's leaf heap than a trash heap..
"This'll be a sizzler!" - Oh noes! Heat Wave's gonna make a steakhouse!
"Reflect on this!" - A deep one, that Mirror Master. He must be getting pointers from Morrison..
"I always come back!" - I didn't know Digger was related to Schwarzenegger... I wonder if he gets special clemency in California?

Still very much crazy, alas. And a little at a loss as to how to present it..
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[User Picture]From: liabrown
2008-07-22 09:09 pm (UTC)
aka, the last words Axel ever hears.

I don't think we'll get that lucky.

Hope it's leaf heap than a trash heap..

He's already lived in garbage (literally), he can't sink much lower than that :P

Still very much crazy, alas. And a little at a loss as to how to present it..

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