Important Notes (before you read the rest):
- So, uh, the Speed Force exists, and the speedsters might be kind of OP now. Why? Uh... my finger slipped?
- I WAS going to add events that happen AFTER Bart time travels, but then I realized it was way too much. If I add that, it’ll only be if/when Wally comes back in canon, if the Speed Force is involved, and most importantly, if I feel like it.
- I’m calling the canon YJS2 post-”Bloodlines” timeline “post-flashpoint” or just “flashpoint” or something along those lines, because Bart did kind of create a flashpoint by returning to 2016.
- If the math doesn’t all make sense, let it be known that I tried my best. I’m basically world-building for most of the actual AU so you know, it’s difficult. But the dates mentioned in the show should at least be accurate-ish.
- For the most part, this powerpoint will be in chronological order.
- Basically, I’m starting with Bad Future AU Events, then when we reach (pun not intended) the point where Bart turns on the time machine, it’ll be back to 2016, but in the post-flashpoint timeline. Not that I discuss too much after that, but yknow. Just so it’s less confusing.
The Beginning of Time - February 27th, 2016:
Everything plays out as normal up until this point.
Whatever “normal” means.
Bart just had to make a time machine, huh? Why can’t the speedsters just fucking leave the time stream alone?
((YJ Season 1 and Season 2 Episodes 1-5 are unaffected by the Bad Future AU, except for maybe a few headcanons in S1 but like you guys know I love Wally and can’t help myself.))
February 28th, 2016: Barry Allen is killed in the Reach’s first attack on the planet. Neutron didn’t mean it, but he didn’t have a choice.
- Barry is taken out first because the Reach know Speedsters are dangerous as hell. I think. IDK, it’s just that like, out of all the Justice League heroes, including fucking Superman himself, they take out the Flash??? That says a lot if you ask me.
- Wally’s gonna get pushed into the role of the Flash and it’s not gonna be a fun time, but the world (and more importantly the JL) needed a Flash, especially with most of the powerhouses on the JL off-world. That, and no one knew he was dead yet–it’s not public knowledge, Barry’s got a hologram in the Grotto kinda like Ted Kord and the others–and someone has to pretend to be Barry so as to not show weakness.
Late October, 2016: The Tornado Twins are born, and they really do have shitty names, but Iris lost the love of her life, so I’m not going to judge her.
- (That’s a lie, I’m judging her a little. Dawn and Don? Really? That’s the same fucking name twice!!)
- Either way, it’s a happy but sad moment. Wally makes too many Godfather jokes when Iris asks him about it for Dawn. Hal does the same thing for Don. Iris has two babies and a headache. It’s okay. We all miss Barry. It’s not really okay. I’m sad. So is Iris. And everyone else.
- Things are getting worse with the Reach, and Vine is dead? What is the world coming to?
Summer 2016: Pokemon GO never came out. On the bright side, neither did Voltron. We didn’t get queerbaited. But hey, they still had Stranger Things. That’s fun.
November 2-3rd, 2016: Wait fuck did the Cubs just win the World Series? The world is ending? What? This is a Bad Omen.
November 8th, 2016: To be fair, this is the bad timeline, we’ve already established that, why are you surprised? You shouldn’t be surprised. I hate you, Cheeto Man.
January 2017: Jason Todd is alive! What the fuck! I love Under the Red Hood!
April 2018: Mr. Stark, The Reach Don’t Seem Too Good (Anymore).
April 2019: Uh. Did the orange cheeto man in the White House just give the Reach complete control of the US government? Is that allowed?
May 2019: I DON’T THINK THAT’S ALLOWED, CHEETO MAN–
June 2019: Oh, the Reach are bad aliens. We probably should’ve listened to the Justice League.
July 4th, 2031: The Hero Massacre
The Reach Invasion was already getting pretty bad, but this is when it flipped from “oh crap the world is ending” to “oh crap this is fucking it we have no hope and the world is being enslaved.”
Assume anyone not mentioned here is either already dead, not important to the AU, will be mentioned later, or living. I’ll leave it up to you to decide. Anyway, some notable casualties:
- Basically the entire Justice League dies. Like, seriously. Everyone. Look, no one said this would be a happy au.
- The Team dies too. Well, pretty much everyone who has ever been on it. Look, the details aren’t important.
- Milagro Reyes, yknow, Jaime’s sister from the comics? Oh, that’s dark. We don’t talk about her death. It’s too sad, or I guess I should say Blue… or possibly Green? Nah, it’s blue, the ring doesn’t matter.
- Artemis Crock. Sorry ‘bout that.
August 24, 2029: Iris West II (Irey West) is born! And Wally names her after his mom aunt. How cute.
May 17, 2031: Oh hey it’s Jai! Why’d they spell it like that! I guess it’s better than “Dawn” and “Don”, though.
July 4th, 2031: Um. I’m so sorry. They don’t have a mom anymore. Whoops.
- Wally takes the kids, who are both under the age of two, home and moves in with Iris and the Tornado Twins, who are 14.
- He’s not doing too good. I mean, he’s like, Barry in the season two finale of CW Flash where he completely gives up hope and pulls the Flashpoint card because he’s so depressed bad.
- But life goes on for a few more years.
June 20th, 2035
- So basically, the events of Endgame (The Season 2 Finale, not the Marvel movie) happen, but this time, Wally is alone and the few heroes who are left are doing what they can but it’s not enough, it’s never enough, and Wally vanishes from existence.
- Iris and the Tornado Twins take in his kids, because now they have no parents.
- I warned you this was the bad timeline. I warned you.
- But he vanished.
- He didn’t die.
- He vanished. Into thin air. Or, that’s what it looked like.
- Oh boy.
So, who’s still alive (and semi-important to the plot) as of Summer 2035?:
- Iris West-Allen. Mom of the century.
- The Tornado Twins, they’re 18, turning 19 in the fall.
- Irey is 6, Jai is 4.
- Lian Harper. She’s like, 20. Wow. Crazy.
- Damian Wayne. He’s 16. Oh boy.
- Jason Todd, somehow he’s still alive, though he really shouldn’t be. He’s about to turn 36 which kind of blows my mind?
- Barbara Gordon. She’s unkillable. But also she’s Oracle. She’s 39.
- Uh, no, they’re the only important ones left. I think.
- Kind of.
- Bart has a mom, you guys, and she’s out there too. Oh god oh no oh god oh shit
Fall 2035: The Reach finally manage to fully enslave humanity, and chaos ensues.
- This is the point where humanity gives up.
- (With the exception of a few rebels, who are hidden away from the world, planning.)
- They open the camps around Halloween of this year. Things spiral downwards.
- Metahumans are hunted down and killed and/or thrown into prisons in sight, it’s Bad.
- Look I’m not gonna go into detail, but by 2040, there’s ash in the sky. Kids born now don’t understand why their parents insist that when they get to draw, with color, the sky should be blue. The ocean should be blue-green, not brown. The ground should be green. Why? These kids have never seen a world that wasn’t polluted as hell.
- It’s… depressing.
March 8th, 2043: Bart Allen is born in Central City, MO.
September 6th, 2045: The Reach somehow find out there’s a family of metahumans living in Central, and they hunt them down. Iris and the twins don’t make it.
- Bart’s mother is there when Irey and Jai return from school (Reach-mandated school, it’s basically a Reach military academy and it’s… not good.) She managed to save Bart, but she hands him over to Irey, and tells the kids to run.
- The Reverse Flash is behind this, and he’s coming, and they need to get Bart out of there before he kills them all.
- Irey and Jai pack their stuff and get ready to go, and the last thing Bart hears as they leave this home for the last time is, “He’s not like us, Meloni, he’s special–” “I know what he is, dad, and that’s why I have to do this.”
- Bart never sees his mother again.
August 16, 2047: Bart, at four years old, finds a flower growing outside—something extremely rare given the time. His plan is to run outside and pick it as a gift for Irey, but he overshoots due to not being very good with his speed yet.
- He, uh, ends up in the middle of nowhere, except it’s not nowhere, because he’s standing in the middle of a city, full of creatures that are definitely not human, and their lack of noses could give Voldemort a run for his money.
- He eventually sees a large dude in a blue suit, who looks like he just came back from the gun and armor shop because this dude is jacked and dangerous
- It essentially plays out like that flashback scene from Infinity War where Gamora meets Thanos except it turns bad.
- Blue Beetle notices Bart move a little too fast, and realizes the kid is a speedster; next thing Bart knows, he’s in a cell that was definitely not built for him, but that he knows he can’t escape.
- (The Reach use Arkham Asylum to imprison the people who are most dangerous to their plans. Bart’s at the top of that list. His cell is the same one that was used to hold the Joker.)
A quick note:
Why do you think Barry was the first Hero, Leaguer or not, to die in the invasion originally?
The Reach know nothing about speedsters, except for one thing:
Speedsters are extremely rare, extremely powerful, and extremely dangerous.
The Reach don’t care if Bart is a literal four year old child. He’s got Allen, West, and [REDACTED] blood in him. They aren’t taking any chances.
March 21, 2049: Bart has been at the Reach camp outside of Gotham for nearly two years when he is rescued.
- A tall man with a black cape breaks into the camp, seeking to free prisoners.
- He discovers a now six-year-old Bart shivering in a cell deep underground, and breaks him out against his better judgement... even after recognizing the way the child was being restrained: power-dampening chains, used to hold back the most powerful metahumans.
- Hours later, Bart awakens in the Batcave under what used to be Gotham City.
- Jai is there, along with the Batman himself– whose name is apparently Damian Wayne–and a few other rogue heroes who survived the massacre.
- Bart finds out that Jai and Irey have been living here in the Batcave for about a year and a half; they’d spent the last two years searching for Bart, and accidentally found their family and friends here in Gotham instead.
- Among the survivors in the Batcave are Barbara Gordon, Jason Todd, and Lian Harper, though they all have their problems.
- Barbara’s been in a wheelchair since 2017. Jason’s not All There anymore. Sometimes he just zones out and it takes minutes to get him back. (They think he’s really only lasted this long because of the Lazarus Pit. He’s on their side but he’s starting to lose it and everyone’s really getting worried about him.)
- Damian and Lian are the youngest of a small group of people who can remember a time before the Reach. But Lian got hurt a few years ago, and it’s hard to use a bow when you’ve only got one arm. (She jokes that she takes after her father. Or the man he was cloned from. No one really laughs, but then again; humor is hard to come by in this world.)
- Damian’s just.... he’s always been used to death. This is nothing new. But after Dick died, and then Alfred and Bruce and Tim and Stephanie and Cassandra and Harper and Duke and Kate and everyone its just hard to stay positive.
- (He wears the cowl because it’s his last connection to his father... and his last connection to Dick, who might as well have been.)
March 21st, 2049:
- When Bart wakes up, Jai is staring at him. Bart cries into his cousin’s arms for a good hour while Batman, now unmasked, sends his older brother a look.
- Something is weird.
- The kid had been unconscious since Damian rescued him. And now, in the exact moment Bart wakes up, there’s this weird energy source they found coming from Central City that Irey’s run off to check out because she just had this feeling.
- And Jai hugs his cousin back but he glances over to the rest of the group because he saw It in Bart’s eyes. The others all stare for a second too, because they know that they saw lightning (real, actual lightning) in the kid’s eyes, but no one except Jai really saw It.
- And then, the computer beeps. A shaky voice comes in, “Damian? I found the source of the energy.” It’s Irey. She sounds scared, almost.
- The man next to Damian removes his helmet. “Is it Reach?” his voice is rough, probably from all those years of smoking cigarettes, but there’s no hint of fear. Jason Todd doesn’t fear the Reach. He doesn’t fear anything (though there’s a rumor he’s scared of clowns).
- “I—it’s my Dad.” Jai, who’s been sitting with Bart, stands up immediately. “What?”
- But Irey doesn’t hear her brother. She doesn’t know what’s going on. She tries to talk to her father.
- “I-Icant-Dad? Dad where are you going—what’s-dad-dAD—DADWAIT—PLEASE DONT—“ the radio cuts off. Irey is gone.
- Jai decides it can’t be a coincidence. Bart waking up with lightning in his eyes. Irey seeing their dad and disappearing, without a trace…
- It scares him.
- Jai stops thinking about what it could mean after they “bury” his sister (just like with Barry and Wally, Iris West Ⅱ has an empty casket; something that is starting to become a tradition with Speedsters).
March 15th, 2050: When Wally comes back for good, Bart’s seven. He’s been living with Damian, Jason, Barbara, Lian, and Jai for a few years now. They’re the last connections to the Justice League. To the past, really. But things aren’t the same anymore. Jai slowed down after Irey disappeared. No one’s sure if his speed is actually gone or if he just doesn’t want to run anymore. No one asks.
- But then that same energy signature that Irey disappeared while chasing appears again. No one is around, most of them are out on a mission to try to find some supplies and food, and Barbara got the flu last week and things aren’t looking good for her. (She’s the oldest, you know, she’s in her mid-fifties and no one really lives past sixty anymore.) Bart glances from Barbara, who’s still asleep, to the screen, and then decides.
- (If anyone had been looking, they’d see lightning flash through Bart’s eyes.)
- He’s off running before he even realizes it. He doesn’t know why. He just knows he needs to go. He has this feeling…
- And when Bart gets there, he’s frozen in shock. Because standing there in front of him, surrounded by a weird light that seems to fade faster the longer Bart looks at it, is something truly impossible. Standing in front of Bart is a beacon of light, and hope, and maybe a way out of this hell he was born into. The person standing in front of Bart Allen is Wally West himself.
- Wally looks scared. Confused. Disoriented. There’s lightning in his eyes, too. It disappears when the light around him does. When Bart’s lightning does.
- Bart taps his earpiece that he learned to never leave the Batcave without. It’s encrypted in a way the Reach could never hack it. (The handiwork of the late great Tim Drake, who Bart never got to meet, but Bart thinks that in another life, he would probably enjoy being friends with Tim; maybe they’d form a team of kid heroes like the one Barbara and Jason told him stories about). “H-hello? Jai? Damian?? It’s Bart. I found… something.”
- There’s no response for a few minutes. Wally’ still just standing there. Bart doesn’t know what to do.
- But then there’s static over the comms, and Jai’s talking, but something’s wrong.
- “-art? Bart, you need to get away from the Cave, the Reach found out, they’re going to come for you—“
- Bart doesn’t get it. He’s still in shock, because, well, Wally. “N-no, Jai, Jai, it’s Wally! It’s your DAD! HE’S HERE, HE’S SAFE AND—“ ”Wait, What? Bart— ohmygodLIANnonononono—Bartlisten,imsosorry,iloveyoukid—“
- The radio cuts out. Bart drops to his knees.
- His cousin, his only family left, is dead. Damian and Jason and Lian and Barbara too, probably, Jai said they found the cave, they’re gone, they’re all gonegonegonegonegone—and Bart’s left kneeling there in front of Wally, feeling more alone than ever before.
- Wally blinks, and suddenly everything comes rushing back to him.
- He’s never met Bart before, but somehow he knows exactly who the kid sobbing in front of him is. There’s a hazy memory in his head of Irey (his daughter, he thinks, his baby girl Iris, named after her aunt because she’s the best person Wally knows outside of Barry, Artemis, and Dick) speeding by him in that—that PLACE, and a whisper of “Bart’s been captured,” and something else along those lines, and Wally’s seen so many things… And maybe he doesn’t consciously know the future, or the past, but he knows this kid is his family and that he needs to help him now.
- So Wally takes Bart under his wing.
April 19th, 2050:
- About a month later, Wally and Bart return to the Batcave. Turns out, Damian survived the Reach’s attack. Lian and Jai didn’t make it. (Wally knows, somehow, that Jai’s okay, and he’s in That Place with Irey and Barry and Don and Dawn and Jay Garrick and all the other Speedsters who have passed on, from every corner of the multiverse, and they’re all home and they’re all happy.)Jason is gone. Damian doesn’t know where, or how, but his brother is—must be— dead. It hurts, but Damian still has that stupid shadows training stuck in his head of “don’t show emotion.” So he doesn’t. Instead, he starts to make a plan.
- Not only is Barbara’s fine, but she also eventually recovers from her sickness. Somehow. Because she’s probably as indestructible as Alfred was.
- (Alfred died of old age, and shot a Reach soldier in the head three hours before he passed. No one ever got over that death, but hey, it’s Alfred, and Damian’s still got this idea in his head that Alfred never actually died and sometimes he thinks he hears him talking. Damian knows seeing ghosts is crazy, but hey, at this point it doesn’t matter. Damian’s died himself anyway. Both he and Jason were ghosts in their own ways.)
April 19th, 2050:
- Barbara is so happy to see Wally. She hasn’t seen any of her friends she grew up with in years, and Damian’s too young to truly remember a time before the Reach. She missed being able to make a reference to a Disney movie with someone actually understanding it. Seeing Wally alive is like a breath of fresh air for the first time in literal decades.
- But there’s a part of her that she can’t seem to get rid of that makes her think that God, Dick would be so happy right now to see his best friend after all this time. She pushes it out of her mind. Dick is gone, and there’s no way he’s coming back. Wally was a miracle, and he’s here because something he calls the “Speed Force” let him go. Because he’s “Chosen.” Barbara doesn’t fully get it, but what she takes from it is that this kind of miracle isn’t going to happen again. There’s no “Speed Force” for humans.
March 8th, 2053:
- Three years later, Bart turns ten, and his little family is insistent on giving him a birthday party. Specifically, Wally is insistent on it, after finding out that Bart doesn’t really understand why birthdays are so important. This is the apocalypse, afterall, and there’s no reason to celebrate anything anymore.
- But Wally has his mind set on this party. He can’t find any birthday candles in the Batcave OR in what’s left of Wayne Manor, so he goes out to look for some.
- Then the alarms in the Batcave go off, signalling that the Reach are coming. Bart runs off to try to find Wally to warn him, but before he can find him, he runs straight into a group of Reach soldiers.
- Bart never makes it home.
- The Reach are pissed, now. It’s been four years since they lost track of the most powerful metahuman they’d ever seen. This time, however, they don’t just lock him up. They take him away from Gotham—all the way to the work camps in Happy Harbor. He’s made a slave, and is put to work under the Reach’s greatest enforcer: Blue Beetle himself.
- The Reach don’t even bother taking Wally, even though Wally’s so much more powerful, so much faster than any of them know. They’re so focused on catching Bart that they completely miss him.
- (Bart knows it was Wally’s time in that... place, that made him so fast, so different. Wally says Irey’s there now. They’re never gonna let her go. Wally saw Jai go in, when he got out, but Jai went in like Barry did and like Jay Garrick did. He’s dead. He’s not coming back. None of them ever are. Irey would’ve, but she was put in there and It will never ever let her go now. It lost It’s chosen one so It’s settling for his children, and it KILLS Wally inside that he’s free and his kids are gonegonegone)
- The slave work isn’t the only thing they do to Bart. He’s the subject of many experiments over the next two and a half years.
- That camp is where Bart meets meets Nathaniel Tryon, or Neutron: the man who started this mess, by involuntarily killing Bart’s grandfather, Barry Allen.
August 22nd, 2055:
Six months until the finish line. Six months until Damian’s plan can go into effect. Six months until the time machine will be finished. And that’s when Wally tells Barbara and Damian that he’s going to find Bart, whatever it takes. After all, they need the kid to complete their mission. They need Bart to save the world.
Bart has been trapped in the Reach camp for two and a half years now. He’s just about given up hope. But there’s a reason Bart insists Wally could’ve been a Blue Lantern.
He doesn’t remember why it started. All Bart remembers from that day is Blue Beetle standing over him, his foot on Bart’s chest and crushing his lungs. He can’t move, and his powers are blocked by that goddamn collar, and he’s going into shock and he can’t think and he can’t move and he can’t move, and suddenly there’s a flash of light, and another and another and another and then Blue Beetle is the one of the ground, Wally is there in his full red and silver Flash suit, made from the Speed Force Itself—something Bart had only heard of before—and Wally’s vibrating so fast that even if he had his powers, Bart doesn’t think he could keep up.
Bart watches as The Flash pins Blue Beetle down with one hand. He raises his other hand into the air, and touches it to the Bug’s chest. Then, when Flash talks, he uses a voice that Bart’s never heard before, one that could even scare off Jason Todd:
“ Jaime Reyes , you are never going to hurt my kid again.”
But before Wally can end it, once and for all, he stops. Freezes.
Bart doesn’t know what to do. Wally’s moving so fast that Bart’s pretty sure he’s starting to be able to see through him. That can’t be good.
Wally removes Bart’s inhibitor collar. Bart feels the lightning coursing through his body again. He feels normal… no. He feels faster than ever.
He finally sees Wally’s face, now. There’s a sad look in his eyes. The Bug is unconscious now, so they’re not in immediate danger.
Bart isn’t in immediate danger.
Wally takes off the ring he’s wearing on his finger. He hands it to Bart, his hands shaking. “This was mine when I was Kid Flash. Open it only when you’re ready.”
Wally steps back. Bart’s now positive Wally’s image is fading.
“Go home, kid. Don’t let this.... don’t let it get this bad. Ever. Bart, you need to go back. You can fix this. You can do this. I know it.”
Bart reaches for Wally but his hand goes through him, like a ghost.
“I love you, Kid. And listen to me. Being a hero is in your blood. So go be a hero.”
Lights flash in the sky. The Reach are coming.
“Do what you were born to do. Run, Bart. Run .”
Wally West disappears forever.
The next six months are a whirlwind of Bart grabbing Nathaniel and racing back to the Batcave, helping Barbara and Damian finish the plans for the time machine, and getting the thing built.
Well, sort of. They plan it Bart’s “trip” out thoroughly. He has to go back in time, save the Flash (Barry Allen) from dying at Neutron’s hands, and stop Blue Beetle by Any Means Necessary. Save the world. Don’t let it become this. Just like Wally said.
Bart has to do it, because he’s the only one who could actually do it. He’s young, he’s strong, and most importantly, they know now that Speedsters are the best suited for time travel. It has to be Bart.
The only problem? They need to build the machine in Happy Harbor, in the ruins of Mount Justice. The machine won’t travel through space, only time, so he has to be in the place where he wants to end up. The Team needs to see him before anyone else. It’s the only way he’ll be able to infiltrate them successfully.
February 21st, 2056:
Bart and Nathaniel arrive at the ruins of Mount Justice. They’ve brought with them all the parts for the time machine, and the plans, and everything else Bart is bringing to the past.
Barbara can’t make the trip to Happy Harbor, so Damian stays with her in Gotham. They know that by this time next week, it won’t matter. This timeline will be gone. Nothing will remain of it, except for Bart. He’ll be the only person to remember it exists.
There’s a lot of things only Bart will know about, soon.
After all, there’s no coming back from this type of vacation.
February 28th, 2056:
The Time Machine is done.
Nathaniel reminds Bart that this is a one way trip.
It’s not like Bart wants to return to this hell anyway.
Bart gets into character. He puts on Irey’s old Impulse suit, which had been modified to fit him, but was very much hers. He puts the box of pictures of him and his family in a corner of the machine where no one would think to look. He tucks his necklace with Wally’s Flash ring hanging on it under his suit.
He closes the door and turns the machine on, knowing that when he steps outside, his life will never be the same.
2016 - The New Timeline, Post-Flashpoint
The first thing Bart does on purpose when getting to the past is to hug Wally West.
The second thing he does is ask Barbara Gordon to go for a walk with him.
When Wally dies for the fourth time, Bart can’t help but blame himself. He’d forgotten Wally was slow.
He opens the Flash ring Wally had given him after the funeral. It was his own Kid Flash suit, designed by Wally himself.
Even two years later, when everything seemed to be going to shit, Bart never forgot the moment he saw Wally return from the Speed Force.
He knew where Wally was.
Bart couldn’t tell the Team.
He had no idea how to connect to the speed force.
But he was determined to save Wally, no matter how long it would take.
Time didn’t matter anymore, because for the first time in his life, Bart had all the time in the world.