Eobard Thawne fantasized a lot in his time. He had perfected the art at a young age, much to the disapproval and scorn of everyone around him, and later channelled that into the writings he made as a young man as he poured his life into the Flash museum. Each piece of merchandise had awakened new thoughts, new situations, and new ways for him to imagine how he would meet and win the heart of his hero.
Perhaps he would save him from a blast of Captain Colds gun, maybe save him from an exploding toy from the Top, or even save him from Gorilla Grodd in some heroic self-sacrificing way. So many options, so many battles, so many foes. The museum had endless ways to fill in the gaps of the stories he told himself at every waking moment and always would.
Even now, as the older curator of said museum Eobard found himself not losing that spark. The museum felt like holy ground to him even as his own collection of memorabilia grew. Antiquing near daily had paid off and paid off handsomely, but it could not come close to the treasures and memories the museum gave him. How he was allowed to get so far in this job despite being a convict, one who was known for being absent-minded and strange no less, was truly testament to the power the building held over him. To the power Flash held over him.
Eobard walked the empty halls, a final check of the museum before he left. No one bothered to disturb him before they all left for the day, not even bothering for single goodbye. That was fine. "Professor Zoom" was not known for being normal, only incredibly knowledgeable about a subject that most people didn't care about these days. He simply would continue on his work, doing all possible to keep the museum up to his standards so that perhaps others may see Flash in even a fraction of the way he could.
The walk came to a close too soon, and Eobard began to close up. The only positive of leaving was that he would go home to his own collection of memorabilia, perhaps read his copy of 'The Definitive Biography of Barry Allen' again. Though before that, he had to do his nightly ritual. As dramatic as that sounded it was simply him checking for more antiques in his local shops. He had found most of his collection in pawn shops from fools who had no idea what they had in their possession.
As he opened the door to the digital bell-like jangle, it seemed tonight would be no different. Among the piles of old televisions, corded and cordless phones alike and board games sat the holy grail in Eobards mind. Nothing else seemed to exist in his mind, all colours bleeding out except beautiful reds and yellows as he looked up the treadmill on display before him. Not just any treadmill, no, THE treadmill. The Cosmic Treadmill. It was worn by time but there it was in his sight, and if the speedforce rushing through his veins said anything, it still worked. Nothing else would matter now, if he cpuld acquire this he could go BACK. He could show Barry all that he did, how much he improved, perhaps then his idol would understand how much he misunderstood him.
Barely restraining his powers, Eobard sped up to the counter. He frantically began to grab money out of his pocket and shoved them on the table with the same speed. The clerk, a portly man named Broome that Eobard had become well acquainted with over his years of collecting, simply raised as eyebrow.
"What are you buying?"
"The treadmill. I...need it. I need it for an experiment." Eobard tried not to let the excitement show in his voice. No one could know what this was.
Broome simply shrugged. "It's not for sale. It's a hunk of junk but it goes in the window to attract normal customers. Not everyone is obsessed with the 21st century like you are, Thawne."
"You don't understand!" Thawnes voice began to raise, and he shoved the bills at the man before him. "I'll pay anything! Just let me have it!"
"I said no, Thawne. It may be the graveyard shift but that's no excuse to act like a jackass." He paused, gesturing to another display of sports equipment as he went back to the ebook in his hand. "Maybe you'll find parts you need in there, you know no one else buys this crap."
Eobard remained quiet, anger building at the rejection. He had told Barry he would be good, he had rehabilitated. He had a therapist who would not approve as well. These thoughts entered his mind, unaware of his body on autopilot as he began to move to the other side of the long counter. He had grabbed a stray wire, unsure of it's use but he felt the weight in his hand. Only then did he blink, coming somewhat back to reality. His anger had not faded, but his hesitations had the closer he got. He would see Barry again. Barry would approve of all he's done, and he would let him become his partner. He would become his friend. After all, Barry would never know.
"Thawne I told y-" Before Broome could finish the sentence, Eobard rouned on him like a starving animal. There was no holding back from the speedforce now, lighting rushing through his veins as he caught the man by the neck. The garrotte cut into the neck, blood already beginning to fall. Eobard was unsure what artery he had hit, but surely the neck would not recover. He let out a smirk imagining the ways the man in his superpowered grasp would die. Maybe a carotid artery would go first, breaking down the walls and causing a stroke in his last moments. He could already feel the gasping, hearing the pulse that was the struggle of blood attempting to stay inside it's proper veins and as fluid began to start their descent into his lungs. Surely the jugular was severely damaged, and the man would be gone soon. To a speedster this all felt slow, but Eobard loved every second.
The temptation to use the cord and his powers to just cut the head off had been tempting, but Eobard could not let himself fall to that. He was doing what needed to be done, this was not for pleasure. Four minutes of gasping, wheezing and pressure fighting against him would be his metaphorical sin to bear.
As the body (finally) stopped thrashing, he let it go. It collapsed rather ungracefully and he could not find it in himself to care. Come morning no one would know what happened to Broome, no one would ever know. The man would be quite literally lost to time, and Eobard would be in the past. He would be the partner of the man he worshipped and he would be lost as well.
Eobard Thawne fantasized a lot in his time. Tonight, as he looked down at the fresh corpse below him, he fantasized that Barry would never find out he had returned to his old ways even if it was just once.