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Fic -- Crime And Punishment
now see here
dillonmania
Title: Crime And Punishment
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 3051
Characters: Top/Golden Glider, Mirror Master/Flash, Pied Piper, OC villain.
Summary: In which Roscoe makes a terrible mistake.
Warnings: Profanity
Notes: Set in an RPverse; an old RP plot idea I never got around to. It's set between The Zoom Gambit and Hard Truths. You need to know that Wally West and Sam Scudder (oh alliteration) are dating, and Wally's on good terms with most of the Rogues. Pretty much only Roscoe doesn't like him, which probably isn't a surprise.



Lisa sometimes worked long hours in the repo business, so she knew very little about how Roscoe spent his days. He didn’t seem to be committing crimes, and if he was, he was very discreet; they never received any attention from the cops, nor had Patty Spivot mentioned anything about him being on police radar. As far as Lisa was aware, he really was just inventing and tinkering as he claimed. She couldn’t imagine how anyone could spend so much time building things in his workshop and not get bored, but even she was well aware that Roscoe wasn’t like other people. He had astounding patience and focus when interested in something.

****


Roscoe’s secure cellphone buzzed softly, and he picked it up. Used only for certain business transactions, it had been child’s play to build devices to make its incoming and outgoing calls nearly untraceable. Nobody was eavesdropping on his phone line, and the workshop was outfitted with more homemade gear to jam any possible bugs. His paranoia served himself and his customers quite well.

“Yes?” he answered, still tinkering with a piece of electronics. The specialized call display, another of his creations, told him it was one of his best customers: Eric Rogers. Also known as the Light, he was one of several young criminals who sought to fill the underworld void left by the reformed Rogues.
“I need some kind of sonic weapon, man. Right away,” Eric told him, and Roscoe snorted derisively. He didn’t have much patience for what he perceived as stupidity.
“You will have to be more specific than that; sonics is a huge field, and there’s quite a range to be done with it. What do you want the weapon to do? What kind of effect are you looking for?”
“It’s gotta take somebody out, like knock them unconscious and shit. I got a robbery planned at the—“
“Telling me your plans is verboten, you know that,” Roscoe said sharply. “If I have to remind you again, then we will no longer do business. Stick to the technical details and leave your schemes out of it.”

Chastened, Eric complied and told him what he needed to know, while Roscoe took copious notes.
“I will start on the project immediately,” he announced when satisfied he had all the required information. “It should be ready by noon tomorrow, and we can make the exchange at Location D.”
“Awesome! I’ll be there,” the young villain delightedly assured him, and let out a loud whoop after ending the call. He had heist plans to finalize.

Roscoe rotated between several locations for delivering goods and accepting payment; ever concerned about attracting the attention of police, he eschewed a set routine to avoid surveillance. As promised, he arrived promptly at the stated meeting point at the arranged time, and handed over the custom-built equipment. Eric happily looked it over, was satisfied, and paid with a discreet bag of cash.
“Nice doin’ business with you,” the young man said politely, aware that Roscoe was mercurial and prickly at best, but the inventor was already walking away. He had work to do and didn’t like to socialize with customers.

****


Any customer who called between certain hours (which not-so-coincidentally were the hours Lisa was home) was instantly blacklisted, so Roscoe was able to keep his business secret. It wasn’t so much that he was trying to hide it from her as he didn’t want her to get in trouble if his activities were traced, so he preferred that she know as little as possible. She was a former criminal herself and didn’t really pry into his enterprises for that reason, but occasionally still wondered what he was up to.

****


A few days after the transaction with Eric, Roscoe and Lisa spent a quiet evening at home. He read a book next to her while she watched television, and though they didn’t say much, they enjoyed each other’s company. But the pleasant atmosphere was disrupted by a call on the couple’s shared phone line, which she picked up because it was from Sam Scudder.

Sam was frantic. “Wally was hurt on the job!” he blurted before Lisa could say anything, and her eyes widened in shock.
“Oh my God. We’ll go down there right away,” she told him, and he anxiously hung up before mentioning what hospital Wally had been taken to. She called her brother to get the information as she and Roscoe hurried out the door.

Roscoe didn’t particularly like either Wally or Sam, but Lisa did, so he went along to support her. And they were family regardless of what he thought of them, so he felt obliged to go; loyalties ran deep with the Rogues. He let her drive to the hospital, keeping a comforting hand on her knee.

Sam was pacing worriedly when they arrived, gratefully accepting a hug from Lisa and a nodded grunt from Roscoe. The other Rogues and family members continued to trickle in, all concerned about Sam and Wally, and he regularly updated them on his boyfriend’s condition.
“He’s in surgery right now, and the doctor thinks he’ll probably be okay…will only probably be okay,” Sam told everyone, biting his lip to hold back tears, and Lisa hugged him again. “He was foiling a bank robbery and something went wrong.”
“The kid’s tough, he’ll pull through,” Len said sympathetically, with a hand on the younger man’s shoulder. “You just gotta have faith and be there for him. We’ll all be there for him.” There was a general nodding from the assembled crowd of Rogues and associates, which was fairly large at this point.

“Do you know how it happened?” Hartley asked, but Sam tiredly shook his head.
“No, I…I was too rattled to ask. But those cops over there might know.”
Several police officers had come in with Wally, and were standing near the operating room while preparing to take statements and write a preliminary report. Sam called them over and asked if they had any information about what had happened.

“Well, our guys are still going over the video footage, but based on witness accounts, it looks like he was fighting the Light…you know, one of those new wannabe Rogues,” one of the officers said as he flipped through his notebook. Many of the former Rogues didn’t look too happy to hear this, annoyed about being associated with upstart pretenders who were often violent. And Roscoe shifted uneasily for a different reason.

“From what witnesses have said, the Light took Flash down with some kind of sound weapon, and stabbed him in the chest while he was unconscious. But this is still unconfirmed until we review the footage and find evidence of the weapons,” the officer concluded. Len shook his head in disbelief.
“Typical of these kids.”

Unnoticed amongst the disturbed and murmuring crowd, Roscoe had gone completely pale. He suddenly turned without a word and walked quickly out of the hospital, seeking refuge amidst the bushes in a front garden.
“Shit. Shit,” he muttered, pacing back and forth. Wracked with guilt, a feeling he was not particularly accustomed to, he put his head in his hands and then yanked out a chunk of his own hair. And another. Unsure how to deal with his emotions, it seemed sensible to momentarily put them off and punish himself at the same time.

“What the hell are you doing?” Lisa suddenly demanded behind him, causing him to jump. She stormed over, opened his clenched hand, and slapped the hair to the ground. “What’s the matter with you?”
He hesitated, shrinking away under her concerned and angry stare. “I…nothing…”
“Something’s obviously wrong, or you wouldn’t be pulling out your own damn hair!”
“…I built the sonic device which nearly got West killed.”
Lisa blinked. “What?”
“You heard me. I did it. This is my fault.”
“Why would you do such a thing?”
“I didn’t expect it would be used this way. I should have, but I didn’t….I simply did not think about it. Sam is going to kill me, and I don’t blame him one bit.”
“Sam’ll have to get in line,” she muttered, shaking her head. “You’re such an idiot sometimes, you know that? For a supposed genius, you’re a real freakin’ idiot.”
“Yes,” he sighed, a rare admission of his own flaws. He looked utterly defeated. “I should go apologize.”
“That’s the least you’ll be doing.”

Lisa marched him back into the hospital and to the Rogues, who were still clustered around Sam and the area outside the operating room. No one had noticed their exit or return, but she cleared her throat and pushed her boyfriend in front of her.
“Roscoe has something to say to Sam,” she announced firmly, and everyone turned to look. Roscoe cringed under their gaze, skittish because of all the expectant eyes on him, but she held onto him when he tried to back away. “Say it.”
He closed his eyes so he didn’t have to look at the others. “It is my fault that West…Wally…was injured. I built the sonic device which incapacitated him. I…I am sorry, Sam.”

Sam just stared at him, and despite the obvious shock and revulsion on everyone’s faces, nobody said anything. They were waiting for Sam to react.
“Get out,” was all he said, turning away.
“Sam, I did not mean for him to be injured. I am very sorry.”
“Get out!”
His feelings were clear, so Roscoe left without another word, Lisa trailing behind him. The other Rogues remained with Sam.

That night was very uncomfortable; Lisa locked Roscoe out of their bedroom, and he sat silently on the couch, unable to sleep. Normally he liked to tinker when stressed or alone, but at the moment didn’t have the stomach for it. Hartley called at four in the morning to say that Wally had sailed through surgery and had a good prognosis, which was at least a relief, but it still didn’t change what Roscoe had done. He wearily thanked Hartley for the update in an uncharacteristically subdued tone, which caused his friend to pause.

“You really feel bad about this, don’t you? Most of the time your guilt over things is mixed with bravado, like you’re defensive and a little bit proud while also feeling some remorse. But not this time.”
“I should have known better, I should have realized someone like Eric might use it for deadly purposes. I did know, actually, I just didn’t care. But that was wrong, and I did not mean to cause Sam any pain.”
“He’s really angry and upset. Glad that Wally’s going to live, but that may only be due to speedster metabolism, you know. He could have died.”
“I understand, and do not expect him to forgive me. I would not, were our positions reversed.”
That was certainly an understatement, Hartley mused to himself: Roscoe’s temper and protectiveness regarding Lisa were legendary. It may have been the reason he accepted that what he’d done was wrong.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets over it eventually. Not now, though,” Hartley said. “But I’ll put in a good word for you, and maybe you can try apologizing again later.”
“I will, and thank you. I also appreciate you not chewing me out, even if I am deserving of it.”
“At this point, I’m not sure what would be accomplished by yelling at you. You obviously know it was wrong. But that isn’t to say no one else will do it, because people are pretty angry at you,” Hartley replied honestly, and Roscoe sighed. This was going to be a difficult week.

Lisa was not any calmer the next day, unleashing another loud scolding which he endured in unhappy silence.
“So what are you going to do about this?” she asked at the end of a second tirade about his stupidity. His eyes darted around in agitation as he fidgeted; the one thing he hated most was having his intelligence questioned.
“I suppose I must shut down my business, for a start.”
“You’re damn right about that! And from now on, I’m going to keep an eye on what you’re building.”
“I am not a child,” he protested, but she didn’t back down.
“No, you’re an inveterate troublemaker who nearly got someone killed. And because I know you were using a separate phone for this, you’re going to give me that too.”
The business phone was quietly handed over, although Lisa stopped short of demanding his personal phone as well.

“Is there anything else you’ve been doing that I should know about?” she asked, and he shook his head vehemently.
“No. I promise.”
“This looks bad on me too, Roscoe. Everyone’s going to be wondering what I knew about your activities, and I think the others are at least a little bit pissed at me.”
“I know, and I am sorry. I’ll tell them you weren’t aware of it.”
“I’d like to think you aren’t going to keep doing dumb things…or bad things…but I don’t know that. Everybody makes mistakes, but this is a pretty big one. If you’ve got some great idea for a project, from now on could you run it by me first, please?” she asked, and he nodded wearily. It was no fun being talked down to like he was ten years old or too incompetent to tie his own shoes, but after some reflection he supposed he had it coming.

****


Roscoe went skulking back into the hospital two days after Wally was injured, trying to remain inconspicuous. He wasn’t keen to get yelled at by Len or somebody, and for all he knew the police would arrest him on sight. Still, it was time to apologize again and see how Wally was faring.

Fortunately neither Rogues nor cops were around, but Sam was at his boyfriend’s bedside. And they didn’t look thrilled to see him.
“What are you doing here?” Sam asked sharply, and Roscoe put up his hands in a gesture of surrender.
“I came to apologize to West -- to Wally -- in person, and to you. I am sorry for what I did, and it will not happen again; I have dismantled my business.”
“Give me one reason we shouldn’t tell the police all about your activities,” Sam demanded. Roscoe swallowed uncomfortably.
“I would rather you did not, but there are no reasons.”

Wally looked very tired. “What about the stuff you sold to people before this? Is it still out there?”
“Yes. I should be able to disable some of it remotely, but it’s out there.”
“Here’s what you’re gonna do: provide us with info on who you sold it to, and help us take it off the streets. Break it, steal it, I don’t care, it’ll all be destroyed in the end. You’re going to give the profits from your work to charity. And you’re going to be honest about everything you sold, got it?”
“Yes.”
“If you help us, then we won’t tell the police about your role in it and I’ll forgive you. But only if I’m certain you aren’t holding anything back,” Wally told him, and Sam looked utterly appalled.
“You’re not going to let him get away with this..!”
“He’s not getting away with anything. He’ll help us clean up his mess, he’s apologized, and we’ve rubbed his nose in it pretty thoroughly. You know he’s completely humiliated. Look at him.”
In any other circumstances Roscoe would snarl back with an insult or threat, but bit his tongue and said nothing. Wally was obviously correct, which mollified Sam somewhat.
“Fine. Go home, jackass,” Sam snapped, and Roscoe turned to leave, though Wally spoke up again.

“Wait. You’re a smart guy. Why would you do something so stupid?”
Roscoe was again tempted to make an angry comment, but calmed down and chose his words carefully. “The rest of you do not approve of me committing crimes, and no one is ever going to hire me for a legitimate job…not for anything meaningful, anyway. I do not have a lot of options.”
“So what are you going to do after this?”
“I don’t know.”

“You could always create a new identity and start over, just like the others wanted you to,” Wally suggested, but Roscoe emphatically shook his head.
“I have already explained why that does not appeal to me: I’ve lost my original body and my home universe, and do not want to lose my name and identity too. Frankly, they are all I have left. Why doesn’t anyone understand that?”
“Why would you want to hold onto something everybody hates?” Sam answered snidely, though Wally reproachfully put a hand on his arm. Roscoe was accustomed to rudeness from Sam (and frequently dished out plenty of his own), but was clearly starting to lose patience.

“C’mon honey, that’s not nice. It’s a fair point, Roscoe, but you’re clearly gonna have to come up with something. Lisa’s reformed and probably doesn’t want the police always sniffing around your door because you’re up to no good. It’s not fair to her.”
“I’m aware of that. That is why I tried to keep my business secret, and also why I have not committed any heists of my own recently. I don’t know what to do now, but will obviously have to think of something.”
He sighed, and the frustration was obvious on his face; it was a problem he’d been wrestling with for a while. “Suggestions would be welcome.”

“Well, I doubt it’s something that can be solved in an afternoon, and I’m totally wiped,” Wally admitted wearily, settling back in bed again, and even Roscoe got the hint. He nodded.
“I hope you recover soon, We-- Wally. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do to make it up to you.”
“Dude, just stay out of trouble. That’s good enough for me.”
Roscoe wryly smirked; for him, that was a rather tall order. But he waved to them as he left. “I will try.”

“You think he can do it?” Sam asked Wally once the other man was out of earshot. Wally just shook his head and laughed.
“Nah, probably not. But it doesn’t hurt for him to make the effort.”

  • 1
Oh Roscoe.

It is almost impossible to make a purely defensive weapon. One thing humans are really good at is figuring out how to kill things.

That's the truth, unfortunately...

Thanks for reading!

Roscoe, that was going to come and bite you in the ass....not literally, but yeah, that was not your smartest move

...maybe he should stick to explosives, he's good at those


I don't know, there's a pretty good chance Sam might have gotten exasperated enough to do that literally :>

Are you sure you want to suggest that to him? It'd probably have even worse consequences :>

Thanks for reading!

yes, but they're generally used to explosives^^

"Half the planet's been blown to smithereens! You HAD to suggest he play with explosives again!"
"....but who could have foreseen this?"

"Fucking everyone, that's who!"

Forethought isn't the Rogues' strong point...

nope
I worked out with katze that a Rogue is about 50% bad decisions and 50% booze (if you count lack of fashion sense as a bad decision, if not, you have to add that^^)

I would definitely count poor fashion sense as a bad decision :> Just not AS bad as some of the others (maybe Gambi would disagree).

OMG! You know this whole story all I was thinking was gods this a perfect scene for a spanking! LOL! Roscoe so contrite and naughty *evil grin* You've got my mind a whir girl! LOL! *drool*

If you write or draw something based on this, you know I'd love to see it! :D

You'll be glad to hear I finished the rough draft of your last-year's-birthday fic :> Hopefully it isn't too short and will be to your liking.

  • 1
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