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Title: Immovable Black Object, Meets Irresistible Green Force.
Fandom: Sky High
Disclaimer: Not Mine. Disney's
Characters: Warren Peace/Layla Williams
Prompt: 057. Lunch
Word Count: 2,562
Rating: G
Summary: This story is a retelling of the scene from the movie in which Layla asks Warren to Homecoming, from Layla's POV.
Author's Notes: I think I need to do a retelling of some of the movie's scenes, from various characters POV's before I can move the characters into the direction I want to take them. (Obviously I'm going to be slowly developing a Layla/Warren romance, since IMHO their chemistry just totally POPPED off the screen! Hopefully crossposting this to skyhighfic and eventually fanfic100.




Immovable Black Object, Meets Irresistible Green Force.



Layla’s plan was simple, really. All she had to do was sit down at a lunch table and ask a boy to go to Homecoming with her. Of course, he wasn’t really the boy she wanted to go to Homecoming with. Or even someone she would have remotely considered as Homecoming Date Material, like ever, ever, ever in a million years before last night. But things had worked our weirdly since then.

And so now, here she was, approaching Warren Peace’s lunch table, to ask him, the one boy at Sky High whom everyone knew was most likely to become a Super-Villain, to be her Homecoming date. (Not that Layla believed that anymore, after last night.)



Really, this hadn’t been the plan when Warren had said, “See you around, Hippy,” last night at the Paper Lantern, just after ten o’clock. She had waited at the restaurant all night long, sitting alone at her favorite booth, because Will had said that he would meet her there at eight. But Will had never shown up. He had apparently become occupied elsewhere with Gwen Grayson, and had completely forgotten about their dinner plans.



Even so, Layla was a determined girl, and so she had continued to wait in the booth, even though it was obvious that Will had stood her up. She was completely miserable by closing time, when Warren, who worked there as a bus boy, had arrived at her table, probably to start nudging her out the door.



Layla didn’t actually recognize him at first. His long, black hair, was swept up, in a loose pony tail, away from his face instead of hanging down and covering his eyes like it always did at school. Even his one odd lock of red hair was almost invisible, swept back along with the rest of the dark mass. So, when he spoke to her with a kind voice, Layla was surprised when she recognized that him as THAT Warren Peace. Will Stronghold’s archenemy, and the boy who had trashed the cafeteria in a hail of fireballs, not more then a week ago.



“Would you like me to heat that up for you?” Warren had offered, pointing to her long neglected dinner.



Mistaking his meaning, she reminded him that students were not allowed to use their powers outside of school. (And one of Warren’s fireballs would most likely have incinerated her meal anyway.)



“I was just going to stick it in the microwave,” Warren replied.



And then the two of them had laughed, and he accepted her invitation to sit down for a moment. After he seated himself, Warren ignited his index finger, and used it to light the candle that decorated the table. And then he had surprised her with such a warm, and disarming smile, that she never would have imagined could come from someone with Warren’s reputation and usual manners. It had illuminated his coal black eyes, and lit up his surprisingly handsome features. That smile made Layla feel completely comfortable and pleased to be sitting with him, forgetting all about the “other” Warren she knew from school.



Layla didn’t remember all the details of their conversation, but she was pretty sure that she had spent the majority of the time babbling away about Will. Warren had been remarkably understanding and even comforting at times, although he must have found it strange listening to all this talk about Will Stronghold, whom everyone knew, he hated.



But he surprised her again by quoting a fortune cookie, “To let true love remain unspoken is the quickest route to a heavy heart,” He’d said. And by the end of their conversation he had totally convinced her to go ahead and ask Will to Homecoming, Gwen or no Gwen.



And so, Layla had decided that she would.



And that had all been well and good, until this morning. Will had arrived bright and sunny to their bus stop, as usual, bragging that he had big Homecoming news, (apparently all recollection of any dinner plans with Layla completely erased from his mind). Even when Layla pulled out a fortune cookie from the Paper Lantern, he didn’t remember, until he read the fortune, which happened to mention “priorities” and “friendship”. Then, finally he’d apologized, before unwittingly crushing Layla again with his big announcement.



Will was going to Homecoming with Gwen Grayson.



“Can you believe it?” Will buzzed. “I’m going with the most amazing girl, at Sky High!”



So he’d gone on and on about Gwen for most of the bus ride, blissfully unaware that each and every word was a stab into Layla’s heart. Finally, he remembered that Layla had mentioned that she had Homecoming news too. After enduring Will’s long Gwen-Grayson-Is-Amazing soliloquy, Layla didn’t know what else to say except, “I’m going too!” (Mustering all the fake enthusiasm that she could.)



“Oh, yeah?” Will said, his voice colored with more then a little disbelief. “Who with?” He said, baffled.



“Who with?” Layla said, thinking as fast as she could.



“Yeah, who asked you?”



“Oh, who asked me,” Layla said trying her best to sound jolly, even though she was feeling more and more cornered. But there was no way she was could back down now with any shred of dignity, unless….



“Warren Peace.” Layla had finally blurted out the unlikely name which had popped into her head.



*****



It was a perfect plan, Layla thought. Really it was. Especially judging from Will’s tirade. It had begun immediately upon her blurting out the name “Warren Peace”, and lasted for the entire remainder of the bus ride, up to and including Will following her to her classroom door, yelling the whole way.



Yes, Layla thought, she had definitely managed to strike the right nerve.



“How could you go with him!?” Will had demanded to know. “When did you even start hanging out?”



“Last night.” Layla retorted, now twisting a knife of her own. “Eight o’clock. At the Paper Lantern.”



Yes, if Layla was looking for the best way to get back at Will for falling for the obvious fawning of Gwen Grayson, then she had found it, and there was nothing that Will could say about it.



The only problem was that now she actually had to let Warren in on this plan too.



*****



He wasn’t looking at her, or at anyone, as she approached his table. He was alone, and that was in fact his choice, since he made sure everyone was too afraid of him to sit anywhere in his vicinity. He was all dressed in black and hunched over a book which perched on top of his ragged old backpack. His black hair was hanging back in his face, as usual. (But Layla now knew that Warren saw a lot more then people realized, from behind that mask. How else had he known about her crush on Will?)



Layla actually thought he looked quite depressed, and lonely, something she had never considered before she talked to him last night at the Paper Lantern. But for whatever reason, the Warren in the cafeteria was a far cry from the bright eyed boy who had been funny and charming, and called her “Hippy” just the night before. (Layla decided that she was definitely going to have to get to the bottom of why Warren behaved this way at school. Although, knowing that he was the son of a Hero mother and a Super-Villain father, Layla could probably guess.)



But that was for another time. For now, Layla had her mission to accomplish.



“Hey, Warren,” she said nonchalantly as she dropped her lunch tray on the table and sat down directly across from him.



Warren looked up and stared at her, clearly surprised that she had dared to breech the invisible wall around him. While, pretending to be oblivious, Layla began to eat her lunch.



Anyone seeing them sitting together would have thought them quite a contrast. He was dark, dressed in black, and generally looking like he lived beneath a dark cloud. She was fair, dressed always in green, and radiating sunshine. But both were Elementals, he with power over Fire, she over Earth, and like most elementals, they had adopted to some degree a persona appropriate to their power. She was the Earth Mother, and he was the flame-throwing Hot Head.



“Did I say, or do anything last night to make you think this was OK?” he asked her in a voice that sounded like a low growl, and which Layla was sure, was supposed to scare her away.



She easily deflected that with a laugh…



“Ha ha, you’re so funny,” she said. And she then plunged right into the reason she had come to talk to him. “You’re never going to believe what’s happened,” she continued.



Warren leaned in closer, and just for a moment Layla saw the same kindness in his eyes that had been there the night before, along with a hint of curiosity. “I was about to ask Will to Homecoming, when wouldn’t you know it, I told him I was going with you instead.” And Layla laughed like it was the most natural thing in the world for her to have told him.



“I don’t remember that being the plan,” said Warren, instantly back in growling mode.



Before Layla could reply, her backup arrived at the table, right on que. It was Magenta, Layla’s sidekick friend, whom Layla had confided in this morning. To say that Magenta, who was naturally cynical anyway, was skeptical of this plan, would be a large understatement. But Layla had been so firm in her strange assertion that Warren was “actually a nice guy,” that Magenta had agreed to help her.



Magenta set her books down on the table, and looked over to Layla as though Warren were not even there and said as nonchalantly as possible, “Hey, Layla. Did you do the history homework?”



Warren was staring from girl to girl now, becoming more and more uncertain about what to do. His invisible wall was being knocked down brick by brick by a bunch of sidekicks, and he wasn’t happy about it.



“What do you think you’re doing!” Warren tried to growl at Magenta. (But he was starting to have just a hint of desperation in his voice now.)



“It’s called ‘sitting’”, Magenta explained, as though she were talking to a two year old.



“Nobody sits here, but me,” And the desperation in Warren’s voice was now crystal clear.



“Um-hum,” Magenta said, sizing him up for a brief moment. She looked over at Layla, who was smiling and nodding her head in such a way as to make it clear that she wasn’t buying the tough guy act either. “Humph”, Magenta thought, “maybe Layla is right about him after all.”



So, Magenta just ignored Warren and continued her conversation with Layla, as though she hadn’t been interrupted.



She said, “What did you get for number 4? Because I wasn’t sure if Tiger Man was A) bitten by a radioactive tiger, or B) bitten by a regular tiger, and then exposed to radiation.”



Warren was clearly upset now. He sat back in his chair, unable to decide what to do, and still trying to protect his invisible wall. But at the moment, he was at a loss for action. Obviously, he could fry the two sidekick girls, with great ease. Just as he had done the week prior, when he nearly trashed the cafeteria for no greater reason than that Will Stronghold had spilled his lunch on him. That would certainly take care of the Sidekick problem but….that really didn’t feel right to Warren at that moment.



Unfortunately, things went from bad to worse. Layla and Magenta’s other sidekick friends arrived at the table.



First Ethan sat down, right next to Warren and he had a huge grin on his face. “Are we sitting at Warren’s table now?! I feel extremely dangerous!” He exclaimed innocently, (and genuinely pleased at the “promotion” to the tough guy table).



Neither Layla nor Magenta had told their two male Sidekick comrades, Ethan and Zach about Layla’s dilemma. But it was pretty much guaranteed that they would sit wherever Layla and Magenta were. And so here they came, giving unwitting assistance, and causing poor overwhelmed Warren even more consternation.



“Whoa! Whoa!” Warren’s voice had become just a tad petulant now.



Then Zach arrived, sitting on Warren’s other side, directly across from Magenta (on whom it was obvious he had a crush.).



“Is this guy bothering you, Magenta”, he asked pointing to Warren. And there was no small bravado in the statement, considering that Zach’s only super power was the ability to glow, and that Warren could probably roast him in about 3.2 seconds.



Warren was now wedged in between the two male Sidekicks. But he was still hunching over his backpack, which he was gripping with white knuckles.



“Does anyone else need a date for homecoming?” He asked the little assemblage. He had finally gotten a little of his growl back. But still, he seemed miserable.



Just then, Layla spotted Will entering the cafeteria from the other direction. He was walking arm in arm with the pretty and popular Gwen Grayson, in the company of her in-crowd.



Prompted by Will’s entrance, Layla erupted in a barrage of loud, fake laughter, grabbing Warren’s arm and saying in a voice she made sure was loud enough to carry to Will, “Hahahahahaha. Warren, you are Kahaaaa-raaaay-zeee!”



Will, for his part, stared at her unhappily, while Gwen continued to drag him deeper into the cafeteria.



Warren, was looking at her like she was the one who was crazy. (And at that moment, he wasn’t totally wrong.) Warren’s eyes moved from Layla over to his retreating archenemy (who was still looking over his shoulder at Layla, and still being dragged away by Gwen).



When Warren looked back at Layla, she was calm again, but with a very guilty and embarrassed look on her face.



“Please,” she pleaded to him. “I promise I’ll make this as painless as possible.”



“So,” Warren said, “You aren’t doing this just because you like me or anything.” It wasn’t a question. But Warren had said it with just a touch of sadness in his voice. Layla thought for a moment, that just maybe, Warren wouldn’t have minded that so much.



“You’re doing this to get to Stronghold,” Warren finished.



“Yeah,” she answered truthfully.



Then, Warren smiled at Layla. But it wasn’t the warm, inviting smile from the Paper Lantern. It was a huge, tooth baring, evil grin, that must have come straight from the blood of his Super-Villain dad, Barron Battle. There was stone, hard coldness in his eyes.



It was enough to make Layla sit back and remember that she was talking to the guy who had nearly destroyed the cafeteria. And, Layla thought, it was probably intended that way, as a warning to her, that even if he had shown her his nice side, that bad, cafeteria trashing son-of-a-super-villain was still in there too.



“Then, I’m in,” Warren said, leaning towards her and continuing to smile, “But I’m not renting a tux.” Then with a single motion, Warren rose from the table, book, backpack and all, and lurched away from Layla and her sidekick friends in full retreat mode.



Layla, just watched him go.



Still mostly oblivious, Ethan chimed in, “Hey, if Warren’s not here, is this still the Tough Guy Table?”

"What was that all about?" Zach asked Magenta, cluelessly, scratching his head.



“Congratulations”, Magenta said to Layla with a smirk. “That’s your Homecoming date.”


Layla put her head down on the table and started to bang it while Magenta chuckled.

"Well, at least it will be an interesting evening," Magenta said dryly, putting her arms around Layla.
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