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I Say No

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“We need to talk.”

Len stopped looking over the plans for his next heist at Barry’s words, judging from his tone they were about to have a serious discussion.

“What about, Scarlet?” He thought back to the past few weeks, but he couldn’t think of anything that would warrant this.

“I was called to a crime scene today, warehouse murder. Five Darbiniyan thugs and a Lieutenant. You know anything about this?”

Len felt his heart freeze as surely as if he’d been shot with his own gun. He had made sure there was no evidence of his presence. He’d even used the same poison as Nimbus to cover his tracks, to make it seem like the meta was the one responsible. How had Barry figured it out?

“I thought the Darbiniyan’s were gone? Didn’t Nimbus kill most of them?”

“The local leadership, yes. But they had some cousins outside Central, and they’ve all come to try and claim the throne. They’re scattered between groups, desperately trying to convince as many of the old henchmen as possible to join them so they can be the one in charge.” Len already knew this.

“The henchmen are not particularly loyal to any one leader, so they’re having trouble finding enough power to get control of the whole organisation. There was one however, Ivan Darbiniyan, he was the frontrunner. Until we found him and his cronies poisoned last night. So the Captain thinks a rival assassinated him. Of course, he didn’t see this.” Barry held up something small.

Len stared anxiously, swallowing as he recognised Mick’s lighter. He must have dropped it while they were staging the scene. He knew there was no way out of this, Barry had seen that lighter often enough, he didn’t need to verify who it belonged too.

“Why Len?” Barry’s eyes were shining with unshed tears, the pain Len had tried to spare him showing clearly.

“They found out we were dating. They threatened you.” He didn’t need to see the way Barry’s face closed off to know how he would take that. For Barry the only thing worse than someone dying, was someone dying because of him. But he wouldn’t take well to Len lying either, and he’d not give up until he found out the truth.

“You promised me, Len. You promised you wouldn’t kill anymore.” Barry slipped the lighter into his pocket as he stepped away from Len. “You should have come to me. We could have found a way to fix this, without anyone dying.”

“How Barry? By arresting them so they can tell the CCPD about us? You’d lose your job.”

“Do you think I care about that? More than lives? Len, I only got that job to free my father. The only reason I didn’t quit when Eobard gave me that confession was the way I could help people, and the connections that could help me as the Flash. If it was a choice between that job and you, I would have quit in a heartbeat.”

“Barry-”

“And you know what the worst part is?” Barry interrupted, making his way to the other side of the table Len was sitting at, dropping heavily into the opposing chair. “When I realized you were involved, my first thought was to hide the evidence. I didn’t even think; the lighter was in my pocket and I told Joe I found nothing.

“And then when I started thinking things through, I was making excuses for you. ‘He had a reason’, ‘it was self-defence’, ‘he drugged and poisoned those men to protect someone’. I’m supposed to protect the people of this city, and I’m dating a murderer.”

“Barry, I’m sorry. I just didn’t want my past to hurt you.” Len reached across the table for Barry’s hand, but he pulled it away.
“It’s your present that’s hurting me right now, Len. We had a deal, and you broke it. It’s not even the first time. Simmons. Lewis. Is there anyone else? Was I just fooling myself when I thought you’d stopped killing?”

“Barry, Simmons and Lewis were to protect people! To protect you! I had to!”

“You said you’d changed Len, and I believed you. But you’re still using me to justify the harm you do. I can’t stand by while that happens. Len, I can’t do this anymore.”

Len stared, stunned, at his boyfriend as the words sunk in. Barry was braking up with him?

“I’ve let you get away with too much, not just killing. I barely try to stop your heists anymore, I let you put together a team of dangerous criminals… it’s not right. I shouldn’t have let it get this far. I have to leave now, or I never will.” Barry climbed to his feet and started heading for the door. Len quickly jumped up and grabbed his arm.

“You don’t have to leave Barry, we can work through this!” Len cupped Barry’s hand between his and looked imploringly into his eyes.

“I thought we already had, Len.” Barry carefully pulled his hand away and continued his way out.

“I love you, Barry. Don’t leave me. Please.” Barry spun around, glaring.

Don’t-” Barry cut himself off, closing his eyes and taking a deep breath. “Len, I accepted that you have difficulty saying that, I was alright with you showing it in other ways. But you do not get to say that to try to manipulate me into staying.

“We don’t work together, Len, we never did. Heroes and villains aren’t supposed to fall in love.”

“Well maybe in you weren’t a hero! Maybe who would work then!” Len snapped, growing angry. Barry was just giving up on them? Just like that?

“And maybe if you were. We aren’t Bonnie and Clyde, Len. And we aren’t star-crossed-lovers either. We’re just two idiots who fell in love and though it was enough. Call it all my mistake, if you want. Just, please, let me go.”

This time, Len didn’t stop him as Barry left.