You were once the most powerful villain. You retired early and are engaged to a minor super hero who isn’t aware of your past. They are about to be killed right before your eyes..but you step in.
She asks him why maybe a dozen times before they decide to get married. It’s not hard to figure out where he goes in the little hours of the morning, not hard to follow him to the edges of forests and abandoned towns and deserts, not hard to smell the spandex, blood and sweat that he wears home. He’s always got bags under his eyes and dirt under his nails and the blood that stains their welcome mat is more often his than not.
So she asks him why before they decide to get married because for all her mysteries, she can’t have him be one.
(Hypocrite isn’t the worst name she’s ever been called.)
He hardly looks surprised at the question, lips quirking as his fingers find the condensation on the glass in front of him. He runs his forefinger up the side, the move thoughtlessly seductive, before drawing it away. The water follows, a thin stream of twisting molecules for a long moment before the tension snaps and it forms a circle hovering above the pad of his finger.
“I may not be a Superhero,” he says, “or even a hero. But when I needed someone, when I really needed someone, a superhero was there. It’s an amazing thing to experience. The rescue. The salvation. It’s…indescribable. It makes you thankful in way you didn’t know you could be.” He allows the water to drop to the diner table and gives her a warm, nostalgic smile. “I want everyone to have that, even if it’s just some guy in a mask with a spray of water at his command. I became Zone for that and I’ve never regretted it. Not once. ”
She’s surprised by the moisture gathering at the corners of her eyes. She hasn’t cried in public for years, normally doesn’t even have to worry about the possibility after years of being on guard. That’s what’s special about Gannon; he makes her feel vulnerable and safe all at once. Comforted. Able to exist within herself, at peace.
She reaches past her empty breakfast plate to cover his hand with her hot palm. The smile she returns is new, her most precious treasure and something she’d never think twice about giving him.
He’s the one who helped her find it after all.