Fresh Start - Part 3
Pairing: Barry Allen x Reader
Featuring: Joe West and Julian Albert
Notes: thank you to everyone who’s reading this story! I’m so happy you like it so far!
Of course that incident during your very first hours in Central City had consequences. You told Thea what happened that same night and, of course, she ended up telling Oliver in no time. As a result, your voicemail was full of messages of a really angry, worried and protective older brother who threatened with showing up in Central City and taking you back with him if you didn’t call him back in less than 12 hours.
Talking him out of that threat in the morning wasn’t easy at all but somehow you managed to calm him down after being with him on the phone for more than an hour. You really appreciated his concern but there were times when you just wanted to kick his ass. Especially when his overprotection caused you to be late for your first day at journalism school.
You were lucky your teacher was a nice mid-age woman. Otherwise, you wouldn’t have been allowed to walk in the class. The first subject was actually pretty interesting. They were going to teach how to write a proper article, what register you had to use and which one you couldn’t, which were the right words according to the topic. They were going to teach you how to write. What you didn’t expect was to have work to do by the time the class had finished.
“I want an article about the topic you chose concerning Central City. It can be about projects the Mayor is carrying out, shops opening, metahumans, crime…whatever you chose is ok. Just remember: adjust your register, your language and state your sources. You have a week. Thank you and I see you on Wednesday” she explained while she took her papers.
The rest of the classes were as interesting as the first one and you couldn’t wait to see what this degree had to offer but you were already loving it. Lucky for you, the only work you had to do so far was writing that article and you had a week. Your way back home, all you could think about was topics to write about and you couldn’t come up with any good one.
It took you a time to find a parking spot and when you did, you went straight to Jitters to have lunch since you still didn’t have time to buy groceries and didn’t feel like doing it. When you finally had your lunch and a table to sit, you took out your laptop and started doing some research on the city while you called Thea.
“Hey! How was your first day?” She asked the moment she picked it up.
“Great! I already love it” you smiled with enthusiasm. “But I already have work to do and I honestly don’t know where to start” you said.
“What is it about? Maybe I can help” she suggested. Soon you told her what the class was about and what you had to do, hoping she could really help you out on this one.
“And I don’t know what I can talk about. When the teacher started talking about writing an article, I immediately thought about writing it about Oliver, you know? I can get an interview with the Mayor of Star City” you laughed. “But then she said it had to be about Central City” you sighed scrolling down the screen in search for some inspiration.
“I would do it about metahumans” she said right away. You frowned at the answer.
“I’m not really interested in them” you commented.
“But people is! It’s an article people would read. Normal people with super powers? C’mon!” She exclaimed.
“Well you have a point…” you said as you typed ‘metahumans’ and searched for it. “I would definitely have information” you added as you saw all the results.
“And I’m sure you can even go to the police and ask someone there. They must have an expert or something like that” she told you.
“I guess…” you whispered. “Actually yes, maybe I can do it about metas” you nodded to yourself. “Thanks Thea, you’re a love” you said.
“I know” she said. You rolled your eyes at the response. “I gotta go to work but I’ll text you later, ok?”
“Ok, bye Speedy” you said before hanging up. “Metahumans…” you mumbled looking through the articles that had been written about them. “The world is crazy” you added before closing your laptop.
You had your topic, you had a week and you were hungry. It could definitely wait.
When you finished your lunch you went straight to the supermarket. You couldn’t just waste money eating out so the sooner you had your food, the sooner you would stop wasting money. The rest of the day was spent at home, unpacking and putting everything in place while you made a list of the things you needed for the apartment. By the time you were done, you were completely exhausted so you made yourself some popcorn, connected your computer to the TV and turned on Netflix.
Next day at university, the classes were as interesting as the first one. Except History of Journalism. That was the most boring class you had ever attended to and the teacher didn’t help. All he did was turning off the lights, turn on the computer and play a PowerPoint while he started talking in a monotone tone that would make anyone fall asleep.
So, after 15 minutes trying to paying attention and not getting anywhere with that, you opened your internet browser and started doing some research of metahumans as you took notes of everything you saw that it looked interesting. You knew there had been many metahumans attacks here in Central City but you never thought there would be that much. In less than five minutes you had a whole list of fifteen metahumans with different powers. But one of them stood out: The Flash.
The scarlet speedster that had saved Central City was all around the papers. Obviously he was loved by the whole city and he had even worked with the Green Arrow sometimes. It was interesting but the articles didn’t give you much more information. You needed a source and you knew where to get one: CCPD. You searched through the department web and soon you came up with a name: Julia Albert, metahumans expert. He was your guy.
When you finished your classes you went straight to the police department. There had to be someone who could give you more information about these metas so, once again, you were standing in front of the desk. Fortunately, this time there was another man behind it. A nicer one than the last time.
“I’m a journalism student and I have to write an article for one of my classes” you started explaining after he asked you what you needed. “I’ve decided to write it about metahumans so I was wondering if I could talk to Julian Albert? Your expert” you smiled.
“First I would need to your student ID if that’s not a problem” the man smiled at you.
“Oh sure! Sorry” you chuckled looking for it in your bag. Soon you found it and showed to him before hanging it around your neck.
“Alright, Miss Queen” the officer said with a smile. “Albert’s lab is upstairs. Turn left and you will find it at the end of the corridor” he informed you.
“Thank you” you smiled at him before following his instructions.
You would love to say that you got there with no problems but the truth was that your orientation wasn’t good at all so you had to ask for indications once again. Finally, you found the door with a sign next to it that said “Forensic Lab”. You peeked in and saw a blond guy sat down in front of a table, focused on some papers, and another one next to the window, looking at some kind of tube. Before you could say anything, the blond one got up in a hurry.
“Caitlin texted me. She has the result. I’ll text you later” he said taking his coat. His British accent actually surprised you.
“Alright” the other guy said.
“Hi…” you said shyly as you walked into the laboratory.
Both of them looked at you at the same time, obviously not expecting anyone at the moment. You imagined the blond guy was Julian Albert, the expert, since you recognized the other one as Barry, the nice guy you met on your first day. It looked like he recognized you as well, since he smiled at you the moment he looked at you.
“Hi! What a surprise,” Barry said.
“Do you know her?” Julian asked confused.
“I met her the other day downstairs. What are you doing here? Is everything ok?” He asked walking over you.
“Yes, actually I came to talk to you…Julian?” You said looking at the British.
“That’s too bad because I have to go. Sorry. But I’m sure Barry will be able to help you” he said walking pass you before you had the chance to say anything.
When he was gone you just stood there like an idiot, a bit confused by how he had stormed off all of sudden. Did you smell or something? When you heard a chuckle in the room, you turned to look at Barry to see him laughing silently.
“Something funny?” You asked raising an eyebrow.
“No, sorry” he chuckled. “You just…look funny right now” he shrugged.
“Well, thank you” you said crossing your arms.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to bother you” he apologized and put the tube on the table. “Can I help you?” He asked.
“I…don’t think so” you frowned. “I came here because I’m writing an article about metahumans for a class so I wanted to talk to the expert but he’s gone faster than The Flash” you told Barry.
“Believe me, The Flash is way faster than that” he smiled as he walked over you. “What are you studying?” He asked.
“Journalism. Just started” you smiled proudly.
“Really? A friend of mine is a journalist for the CCPN” he told you. “Central City Picture News” he added when he saw your confusion. “You’re not from here, are you?” He asked.
“I’m from Star City, actually. I’m still trying to get used to the place” you shrugged.
“I see” he nodded. “Well, Julian is busy right now and I think he will be gone for a while. But maybe I can help you” he shrugged.
“Do you know anything about metahumans?” You raised an eyebrow.
“You would be surprised” he chuckled.
The answer was somewhat odd but you decided to let it go. This guy was one of the few people that had been nice to you since your arrival so you didn’t want to bother him with stupid questions.
“Well…ok” you nodded. “So can I ask you some questions?” You said awkwardly since you still wasn’t too sure about how this interviewing thing worked.
“Barry!” A big man came into the room wearing a black coat with a white shirt underneath. “We have to go. Cisco called me. It’s important” he said.
“Eh…Joe, this is (Y/N)” he said stopping this Joe for talking, like he could say anything wrong.
“Sorry, I didn’t see you had company. I’m Joe West, detective” he smiled kindly as he shook your head.
“Nice to meet you” you smiled at him and looked at Barry. “Raincheck?” You asked.
“Absolutely” he said taking a piece of paper and writing something down. “Call me tonight and we can meet up, alright?” he said handing the paper over.
“Sure. Thank you” you smiled at him.
“No problem” he smiled back. “See you”
None of them gave you time to say anything else before they left. Well, it looked everyone in this place was in a hurry except you. With a sigh, you put the paper in your back pocket and you looked around but since you had nothing else to do there you decided to leave the place before someone saw you. You didn’t even know if you were supposed to be there unaccompanied.
You had to do a couple things for college and you were starving so you went straight to the apartment to get it done. The afternoon was over before you even realized but you managed to get everything done in time. Still, you had some laundry to do so you took your basket and went to the laundry room of the building. Before putting the jeans in the machine, you checked the pockets and it was there when you came across the piece of paper Barry gave you.
“Damn!” you exclaimed.
Quickly, you put your laundry in the machine and took out your phone. It was almost 1 a.m. but maybe you were lucky and Barry was still awake. First, you saved his number into your phone and then, hesitantly, you dialed it and waited, biting your lip as you felt some tickling in your stomach.
“Hello?” His voice said on the other side of the phone.
“Hi Barry. It’s me, (Y/N)” you said.
“Oh, hi! I was starting to think that you had found another metahuman expert to talk to” he said making you laugh a little.
“I would never do that to you” you smiled. “Sorry it took me so long, I’ve been busy” you sighed.
“No worries. I’ve been busy too so I guess you called just in time” he said.
“I’m glad then. So…when are you available?” You asked biting your lip. Why did you felt so nervous doing this?
“Are you free tomorrow? Maybe we can have some coffee around 10 in the morning?” He suggested. Luckily for you, you didn’t have your first class until noon the next day so 10 should be fine.
“Sure! That would be great” you agreed.
“Perfect. Do you know where Jitters is?” He asked.
“Of course” you smiled. “So…see you there at 10 then” you said.
“Sure. See you tomorrow. Goodnight” he replied.
“Goodnight Barry” you said and slowly hung up, ignoring all those sensations going up and down your body just by the sound of his voice. Definitely, you needed to calm down.