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Emerald City

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A light rain drizzled down on the park, deepening the color of the green spring grass and shrubs, the trees bursting in colorful blossoms.

Probably due to the weather, the park was deserted except for three figures: two men and a young girl, who skipped ahead of her parents and turned her face up to the rain.

Roy laughed as he watched his daughter stick her tongue out for raindrops. His smile remained as Dick grasped his hand as they walked.

“Beautiful today,” Dick said.

“Beautiful, huh? Even with the rain?”

“Oh, a little rain won’t hurt you, Speedy. What are you, the Wicked Witch of the West? You won’t melt.”

“Har de har har.” Roy squeezed Dick’s hand. “Always looking on the bright side, aren’t you?”

“I try.” Dick’s smile was pure dazzle. “It’s a wonderful spring day; I’m out in the park with my Speedy and my daughter, Bruce finally quit being stubborn and allowed himself to get together with Clark, and my night and day jobs are going great. What’s not to love?”

Roy’s heart skipped a beat as he beheld his smiling partner: Dick was the most beautiful man he had ever seen, and that was saying something as Roy hung out in the superhero community, loaded with gorgeous people of both sexes. Dick had always had a special light, inside and out, and it had hurt Roy when that light had dimmed in recent years.

Now Dick had found his light again, and Roy was ecstatic. He and Dick were committed to each other, and to Lian.

“The only thing about this rain is that we can’t sit on the bench and watch Lian try to catch butterflies,” Dick pouted.

Roy loved that pout. He laughed and squeezed Dick’s hand. “Lazybones! We’ll just have to walk behind her.”

Dick grinned and he swung their hands, the impish pixie look on his face incredibly appealing. Roy was so happy that the sun not being out didn’t matter. The sun was right beside him.

Lian was amusing herself with studying flowers and looking out for squirrels and chipmunks. Her momentary disappointment on not being allowed on the slippery playground equipment had disappeared when Roy had suggested the ‘nature walk’.

“Wow.”

“What?” Roy asked as he watched his daughter.

“You look really great wet.”

Snorting, Roy looked at Dick, whose eyes were sparkling.

“Watch it, Shortpants. I could make cracks about a skimpy costume if I wanted to and how when that got wet, it got even skimpier.”

“Who’s stopping you?”

Roy shook his head while Dick laughed.

The two men walked in companionable silence for several more minutes behind their daughter.

“Speedy.”

Roy turned to look at Dick. “Yeah?”

Dick’s hand touched his face. “You’re my sunlight.” He smiled. “Must be the red hair.” He leaned forward and whispered into Roy’s ear, “And the good heart.”

Blushing, Roy tingled at Dick’s affectionate laughter, hugging his lover.

He looked toward Lian when her heard her squeal, but she had only found some daffodils, one of her favorite flowers. Glancing up, Roy frowned. “Does it look darker to you?”

Dick looked up. “Yeah, some heavier rainclouds moving in…”

A loud thunderclap, then suddenly the skies opened up.

Lian shrieked with glee as her fathers turned to each other out in the middle of open spaces while bone-drenching rain poured all over them.

Dick sputtered and laughed as he shook his head, droplets flying. “So much for the weather forecast saying, ‘Light drizzle only’ for the day.”

Roy wiped the wet strands of hair away from Dick’s eyes. “Well, Robbie, one thing’s for sure.”

“What’s that?”

“You don’t melt like the Wicked Witch of the West.”

Dick burst out laughing and shoved Roy, who lost his balance but Dick caught him.

“I see my Emerald City right there.” He pointed to Roy’s green eyes and winked. “The Wizard granted all my wishes a long time ago.”

It was Roy’s turn to laugh, pulling him close.

They stood with foreheads touching, arms around their waists, and then angled for a kiss as the rain came down in torrents.

Neither man melted, though the fires of love burned brightly within.