For Better or For Worse (Barry/Iris; G)
Summary: Set after 4x01. At two in the morning after a night of crimefighting, Barry finally comes home to Iris. But something’s wrong - and Barry has to ask why.
(IRIS is sitting up in bed, wearing a shirt of BARRY’s and panties, engrossed in what she’s doing on her tablet. When BARRY speeds in, she doesn’t look up, instead furrowing her brow in concentration.)
BARRY (surprised): What are you doing up? It’s two in the morning.
IRIS (still not looking up from her tablet): Just working on a new training simulation for you. I made it for Wally, but I figured I’d have to make some adjustments because you’re running faster than him.
BARRY (getting into bed next to her): It can’t wait till later?
IRIS (sighing): Fine.
(She puts her tablet on the bedside cabinet and gets under the covers. BARRY does the same.)
BARRY (softly): Hey. You okay?
IRIS: Yeah. I just…
IRIS: I didn’t think I’d ever sleep in this bed again.
BARRY (pleading): Iris, talk to me. Something’s wrong. I can tell.
IRIS: Bear, you’ve just got back. I don’t want -
BARRY: You think, in all the years we’ve known each other, I’ve ever been able to sleep at night when I knew you were mad at me?
IRIS: …look. I love you. With - everything in me. I always have. And I can’t think of anything I want more than a future with you - a home, a white picket fence, a cat, God, even the diapers. Especially the diapers.
BARRY (raising his eyebrows): Diapers? Uh, is there… something you’ve got to tell me?
(Some of the tension dissipates as IRIS laughs.)
IRIS: No, it was something you were telling me. You know, when you first came out of the Speedforce and were writing gibberish on the walls. You said “we’re gonna need more diapers”. And, I don’t know. Maybe when you were in the Speedforce time was different, and you went far into the future. Our future.
BARRY: You mean… us having kids?
IRIS: Yeah. And, listen to me, okay, because I can’t say it plainer than this. I want to have it all with you. But I can’t do that without moving past the fact that you made a snap decision to go into the Speedforce.
BARRY: You know why I did that.
IRIS: To save the world. I know. And it’s why I love you. It’s why I’m still by your side. Where I’m meant to be. But I -
(She breaks down, now, tearing her gaze away from him and trying to brush the tears away. He doesn’t seem to know what to do, and after hesitating he puts his hand on her shoulder.)
BARRY: I’m sorry.
IRIS: You don’t have to apologise for being a hero, Barry. I just wish we could have talked about it first.
BARRY: I get that. And I wish we could have had the chance to do that, but everything happened so fast -
IRIS (managing a watery smile): Story of your life.
BARRY (smiling back and reaching out this time, tucking her hair behind her ear): Apparently.
IRIS (her hand covering BARRY’s): I’ve missed you so much. And - the thing is, Bear, I thought you were gone. Gone for good. Just like Eddie, like my mom. People kept leaving me, Barry, and then the one person who was my anchor since we were kids - my everything - he leaves too. And I get why, just like I get why Eddie sacrificed himself, why it was my mom’s time to go. I’m not blaming you. But I can’t pretend the last six months didn’t hurt. They still do. And I’m guessing that won’t go away quickly
BARRY: I get that. All of it. But… Iris - you have to know, I’m never gonna leave you. Ever again.
IRIS: How can you be so certain?
BARRY: You know how everyone was saying today that I was running faster than I’ve ever gone?
BARRY: The driving force behind that - it wasn’t the Speedforce’s residual energy. It was you. It’s always been you who has pushed me forward, who’s made me run faster, get better. And you had faith in that. Somehow, even in the middle of that pain, you had faith in the fact that you’re my anchor. My lightning rod. Enough to put yourself in danger, because you knew I would come for you.
IRIS: Like you always have.
BARRY: So you don’t have to worry. I’m not going anywhere. Not ever.
IRIS: Does that mean you’re stuck with me?
BARRY: For better or for worse.
IRIS: Ah. That reminds me.
(IRIS reaches across BARRY, rummaging in the drawer of the bedside cabinet and then finding the ring. She places it in his palm and holds onto his hand for a moment with a smile.)
Bartholomew Henry Allen. Will you marry me?
BARRY (sliding the ring onto her finger): Do you honestly think there’s a universe out there where I wouldn’t say yes?
(They both laugh, leaning towards each other for a kiss as their fingers entwine, Iris’s ring sparkling in the faint light.)
I love you more than life itself, Iris West. Yes. A thousand times yes.
Tagging: @irisbestallenn @almondblossomme @slea @ardentlinguist @adorkable456 @feylicia-blog @sophisticatedloserchick @ohkeish @4getregretorlifeisyourstomiss @mspurple23 @followthejellicoroad @wellfuckuthenkk @queenv1536