A/N: Teen!Westallen AU where Iris realizes she has feelings for Barry right about the time she hears he & Becky broke up. You’re welcome for the fluff. Lol.
Iris had never been so nervous in her life. She was only fifteen, and it was her best friend’s locker she was walking to, so she knew she shouldn’t be thinking in extremes. But she couldn’t help it. She’d realized something in recent weeks, something she hadn’t want to admit BEFORE Barry Allen got a girlfriend because the perfect bubble that was their friendship was too precious to burst.
But now she recognized the feeling for what it was. Topped off with the obvious jealousy she felt every time this girl was around, STEALING her best friend away, looking smug and victorious in HER direction, as if she knew exactly what she felt before she did.
Maybe she did. Maybe everybody did.
Did her dad know? Did BARRY?
She felt her face grow hot at the latter possibility.
If Barry knew how she felt about him, and he STILL started dating Becky Cooper, was that him trying to gently let her know he wasn’t interested in a way that wouldn’t hurt her?
Well, it DID hurt, but she couldn’t tell him that. She wouldn’t be the one to damage his first relationship before it barely got off the ground.
But that was six months ago. And YESTERDAY, they had broken up.
Iris hadn’t known about it. He hadn’t told her. That should’ve annoyed her, but she didn’t know how she’d have reacted if he HAD told her, so she was actually glad she’d found out through run-of-the-mill high school gossip. It gave her time to think. And now, six hours later, she knew EXACTLY what she was going to do with this knowledge.
She would approach him, tell him she knew, offer her condolences, and then…
Two steps away from Barry Allen, Becky Cooper with her long blonde perfect hair whooshed past her and right into Barry’s arms. He evaded a kiss, but Iris couldn’t tell it was because he didn’t want to kiss her or he was just too startled to response.
“Iris,” he said, pushing Becky off him a safe distance away, but not repeating the action when she draped her arms around his neck from behind and set her chin on his shoulder.
“Hey, Iris,” Becky said, the false sweetness to her voice making Iris just barely restrain a glare and a disgusted cringe.
She forced a smile instead, like she always did.
“What’s up?” Barry asked, drawing her attention back to him.
“I, uh…heard some people talking about you today, and I thought-” She shook her head, ignoring the heat of Becky’s piercing stare on her left cheek. “Nevermind. It was obviously false information. I’ll see you at home.”
She started to move past him, annoyed by herself for believing the rumors and at Becky for smiling the way she was now.
But Barry went after her and grabbed her arm, making her halt. Reluctantly, Iris turned back around. She couldn’t decide if she was relieved or not that Becky was no longer clinging to him and was actually a safe distance away.
“What did you hear about me?” He asked, brows furrowed. “Something bad?”
She hesitated, her tongue thick in her mouth, then said, “No. nothing bad. And anyone who just saw what I did will know what’s been going around was nothing but a rumor. I should’ve known you wouldn’t keep something this big from me anyway.”
“What did you think I kept from you?” His brows furrowed further.
Her lips parted, but no sound emerged.
And then, completely uninvited and unwanted, Becky broke into their conversation again, wrapping her arms around Barry’s waist from behind.
“I think she’s talking about last night, babe.”
It took Barry a minute, but finally the light bulb turned on. Beet red, he looked back at Iris.
“THAT’s the rumor going around? That Becky & I broke up?”
“I take it you didn’t,” Iris said, he tone of her voice flat, even as she tried to not make it be.
Barry shrugged, awkwardly because Becky was hanging over him.
“We sorta did, I guess.”
“But we made up this morning,” Becky interjected. “Didn’t we, Bear?” She kissed his cheek.
Iris could barely contain herself. Everything inside her wanted to viciously scratch her nails all over Becky’s perfect face. Bear was HER nickname for Barry. And her dad’s of course. But no other girl should get that privilege.
“I…should go,” she said, because she really needed to get out of there. She couldn’t stand being there another minute.
“I’ll see you at home?” He offered up, clearly confused and frustrated because he could tell she was sad but didn’t know why and didn’t know how to fix it.
“Yep,” she chirped and then turned away.
“Bye, Iris!” Becky said in the sing-song voice that Iris despised. The blonde probably knew it too.
She could not BELIEVE she’d figured out she had a crush on her best friend, and had actually thought maybe him breaking up with his girlfriend meant he could be interested in her.
How incredibly awkward. How humiliating.
Iris wanted to cover her face with a pillow and hide herself under her blanket and burrow away into her closet until high school ended and Barry went away to college, and then when he would come back, she’d be completely and totally over him.
But that was still a few years away. A few years felt like an eternity.
She sighed dramatically when she got outside and then sat on the steps outside the school, telling herself not to cry, especially when students were bursting out of the building and could easily see her.
Not two minutes later, Becky Cooper was stomping off ahead of her, crossing the street. She looked angry and annoyed and distraught, and she clearly hadn’t noticed her or she likely would’ve said something scathing and rude.
Distracted by the sight of the fleeing girl, Iris hardly noticed the person who sat down beside her until he bumped his shoulder with hers. She nearly jumped as she turned to look at who it was.
“Barry,” she gasped. “What are you-” She looked back across the street, but couldn’t spot Becky anywhere. Then she saw her way into the distance stalking purposefully from one block to the next.
Iris looked back at Barry.
“I don’t understand.”
“We broke up,” he said.
Her lips parted. “Again?”
“Mhmm.” He nodded. “I actually thought we were still broken up until she lunge at me right before you got to me at my locker.”
Iris said nothing, still trying to process.
“I know I should have told you, but it was really late last night, and she was just talking crazy over text and suddenly broke up with me.”
Iris remained silent, continually at a loss.
“I was going to tell you today, but I had to get to school early for science club, and chess club had a practice session during lunch, and we don’t have any classes together this semester, so…”
“You’re really broken up?” She asked, needing clarification, but kind of hating how desperate she sounded.
He nodded. “Yep.”
“But why?” Her brows furrowed. “It seemed like she wanted to get back together. And you…” she gulped. “You like her.”
“Nah,” he said. “I don’t think so.”
Her jaw dropped. “Then why were you dating her?”
“She was the first girl to ask me out,” he said. “It seemed like a pretty dumb idea to turn her down. That’s what I thought at the time at least.”
“Well, she’s pretty,” Iris said, then wondered why. “And popular.” She scolded herself again.
He shrugged. “Just not my type, I guess.”
She raised her eyebrows dubiously.
“You don’t like pretty, popular girls?”
“I don’t like Becky Cooper. Not when she looks down on my best friend like she’s dirt and accuses me of cheating on her with you.”
Iris’s face felt like fire. She swallowed hard.
“She did that?” She asked, her voice almost a squeak.
He nodded. “Said I’m in love with you and just won’t admit it,” he said too quickly, avoiding her gaze. “And that you just feel the same way, and I was blind if I didn’t see it.”
She swallowed hard and waited till she found her voice again.
“I see why you broke up with her.” She waited a few beats and then took the plunge. “Was she right?” She asked, tentatively meeting his eyes.
Barry looked like a deer caught in the headlights, and Iris regretted asking the question, but she didn’t know how to take it back without making it a big deal or stumbling over her words.
“I…” he finally managed. “Well…” he cleared his throat. “I can really only answer part of that, Iris. And…I don’t know if you want me to.”
Her face fell and she turned away. “Oh.”
Barry began to panic. He couldn’t figure out what she was thinking, and he wondered if he should’ve dared to hope at all after breaking up with Becky purely because she’d laid out proof that Iris wanted to be with him.
“Can you answer your part?” He asked quickly and heard her breath catch in her throat. She didn’t respond. “Or…what were you going to tell me at my locker?”
Iris turned to face him, debating. He was surprised to see a shimmer of tears in her eyes.
She licked her lips, glanced down at his lips for one brief moment, and he prayed to God he hadn’t imagined it.
“I…” she tried, then failed to produce any more words.
She took his face in her hands and met his eyes. It was something she did every so often, but this time was different.
Clearly nervous, she started a shaky descent towards his lips. Then before she lost her nerve, Iris pressed her lips to his and closed her eyes.
It was her first kiss, so she didn’t know what to expect, but his lips didn’t move, not until she counted to three in her head. Then she felt his lips press back against hers, and her eyes opened wide.
She pulled away, dropped her hands from his face and stared straight at him. He mirrored her shocked, confused, wary expression.
“Can we forget that happened?” She asked on a whisper, mortified because of how very NOT romantic this felt.
Barry tried very hard not to squeak.
“I really don’t want to,” he admitted bluntly, instantly igniting the butterflies in Iris’s stomach.
“Then…I guess Becky was right,” she said tremulously.
“She was?” He asked, gawking, but smiling a little too.
“Well…” Iris’s gaze flirted away from his shyly. She gulped. “At least about me.”
The space of three seconds, as long as their first kiss has been, felt like an eternity, but it was enough to drive Barry into action.
He reached out and cradled her face in his hands, turning her and leaning down before she could decide to look at him.
He kissed her as she had him, but then he angled his head to kiss her differently, sliding his lips against hers, opening them and gently prodding her to do the same.
Iris was hesitant, but eventually followed his lead. She turned towards him more and clutched at his shoulders and waist. When he slipped his tongue inside her mouth, she felt a zip all the way down her spine.
She pulled back, startled by the sensation, eyes wide.
“Was that too-” he stuttered, but she wouldn’t let him finish.
“Where did you learn to kiss like that?” She demanded, breathless. Then a thought occurred to her. “Did you and-”
“No!” He said, wide-eyed in honest denial. “She - we never - ”
“I’m your first?” Her eyes lit up, her face glowing.
His heart threatened to explode.
“Aren’t I yours?” He asked sheepishly.
“Yeah.” She grinned. Then pulled him close and kissed him again. She was smiling so wide though it was hard to kiss him properly.
“So how did you know how to kiss me?” She pressed, and he knew he couldn’t get by without telling her.
“I watched videos,” he admitted.
Iris pulled back, scandalized but only mildly so.
“Barry Allen, you watched-”
“TUTORIALS, Iris. Not porn. GOD.”
She giggled and pulled him close again. She stopped smiling long enough to kiss him properly. She got lost in it. She moaned and felt the shiver rippling through him when she did. Felt it again along with an intoxicatingly groan from him when she flicked her own tongue against his.
When she finally pulled away, they were both breathless.
“How long have you liked me, Barry?” She demanded.
I LOVE you, he was thinking, but it was probably too soon to tell her that.
“A long time,” he said instead, and she returned the confession with a sappy grin.
“You?” He ventured, needing to know.
“Not sure,” she said honestly. “I just realized it recently, but I probably have for a while.”
He was starry-eyed, giddy. He took her hand in his and threaded their fingers together. Then he stood up and she came with him.
“Want to go to the park?” He asked. “They just finished the new swing set, so I won’t break my legs when I try to pump my feet.”
Her smile spread and she nodded once.
“Sure, Bear. Let’s do it.”
He guided her down the steps, then, not bringing a backpack home that day, he crouched almost to the ground and waited.
Iris recognized the invitation and couldn’t suppress her giggle. She bit her bottom lip, smiling, and then promptly situated herself on Barry’s back, holding tightly around his shoulders as he slowly stood up.
Barry grabbed her calves in his hands, holding her to him as he started the trek towards the park. It gave Iris shivers, the feel of his hands on her bare skin. She kissed the side of his neck in return and then nuzzled into him, smiling happily.
Unseen to her, Barry was grinning like a fool, his lips spread so wide his cheeks hurt, but he didn’t care. Only in his wildest dreams had he believed Iris would feel the same way.
Half a block from the park, Barry started to run. He could only run straight in short spurts, and it was just enough to keep Iris from being too jostled about. He set her down when they reached the grass and reached for her hands which she granted him willingly.
She reached up on her tip toes and he craned his neck down to meet her lips.
“This is going to be such a problem living in the same house,” he murmured after one sweet, sensuous kissed.
She groaned, because she’d been trying not to think about that very thing.
“What a mood killer, Barry,” she complained.
His eyes widened in panic, so she assuaged his worried with a quick peck on his parted lips. She intertwined their fingers together and dragged him further into the park.
“Come push me on the swings, Barry. We’ll worry about the rest later.”
And just like that his mood shifted instantly from panic and worry to the overflowing joy he’d felt before. He didn’t say anything for a while, but he smiled like a kid on Christmas and she giggled as if she’d had a full glass of champagne. He pushed her on the swing and then got on one himself. They kissed a few more times and then they lay on the grass, hand-in-hand, gazing up at the puffy clouds partly hiding the sun.
“This is a great first date, Barry,” she said a while later.
He grinned to himself, still in disbelief that this was happening. Then shamelessly he admitted the simple truth that she had likely forgotten.
Kathryn McCullough, Missing Person since September 25, 2016. May be with a man with dark, short hair in his forties driving a red sports car.
PSA: This girl that lived only a couple miles from me is missing! Please share this as many times as you can to help this family! All the contact info is in the text above. If you have any information at all, please contact the family or the local authorities!