dinah's in a different city every night. central city, civic city, delta city, empire city, fawcett city. you name it, she went, she saw, she conquered and all she got was a lousy t-shirt.
tickets usually sold out quick when they were released. black canary wasn't really into ticket sales, so most of their shows were done underground and by word of mouth. it allowed her to keep an air of mystery around her, gave her a bit of an edge. as if being a superhero wasn't enough, she had to also add edgy riot girl to her repetiore as well. it worked, though. between the mask she wore as a musician and the mask she wore as a superhero, it made dinah a whole person.
they were in zenith city on the last show of their tour and they were about to play a packed house. dinah could hear people upstairs above her dressing room getting rowdy, but she made no effort to appease the hungry crowd. their stomping feet and roaring chants only made the wait that much sweeter.
"really, D.D., one of these days they're going to come after us and tear you apart for making them wait."
"as if. half the fun of a show is the wait. let 'em wait. we'll tear the place up together." dinah winked and took a swig from her flask.
it wasn't as if black canary was the next black flag, but she made a point. their fans made every show a visceral experience. they were known for being particularly destructive, which was why booking a venue could be difficult. it wasn't as if they wouldn't offer to clean up the mess, or at least pay for it, but it didn't make them any less dangerous to have indoors.
dinah is smudging her eyeliner in the mirror and sees their manager behind her, watching her in the reflection. "what?" she askes, looking at him suspiciously.
"do you think people come for the trouble? like...to see you pull up your fishnets and fight?" this had crossed her mind multiple times before, but it didn't bother her one way or another.
"do we care? they're still here. they're still buying merch and paying to see us. isn't that what you want?" maybe it did worry her just a little. if they were only there to see dinah in action, then what was the point in doing this any longer? sure she loved it, but trouble followed them wherever they went and at some point, she would get sick of it. did people chase the high of being protected by the black canary herself, or were they there for the music? she visibly faltered and looked back at him. "you don't think they love us for us."
heathcliff faltered as well. "i think they love you for you, but ditto, byron and paloma? i don't know."
paloma piped up, annoyed but resigned. "he's right, D.D. they come for you and stay for you."
dinah was conflicted and turned to look at them. it wasn't as if it were the fame she wanted, she just wanted the high. it was her perfect life. vigilante justice and riot girl rowdiness? yes please. "they love all of us," she insisted. "we're a package deal. always have been, always will be."
despite her insistance on doing everything alone and being alone, this was one group she swore she belonged in. she read the room and sighed, picking up her flask. "c'mon, guys. we're a team! we're a band! we're in this together no matter what. ditto, c'mere." the 11-year-old mute came toward her and sidled up next to her. "let's have a toast, shall we? to black canary. all for one and one for all?"
they all rolled their eyes and clinkled various glasses and flasks. dinah handed her flask to ditto and people immediately started shouting. she just laughed. "relax, it's actual grape juice."
all laughing, they began to get their stuff together to go on stage. dinah was fastening a a long black feathered cape around her shoulders, covering up her usual black get up, ripped fishnets and and racy bustierre included.
"D.D., before you go..."
"what's up, heathcliff?" she turned to him, the cape billowing dramatically.
"your mom, dad and oliver are all out there to support the last show. make it count."
dinah just smiled and nodded, her brows furrowing at the news. she and ollie were fighting along side each other, but they had a mostly professional relationship if you didn't count the handful of times they were anything but professional. she didn't think much about his arrival, but her mom and dad were never around...
the band made their way to the stage while she hung back and waited for her cue. there was an uproarious applause that drowned out the music, but it didn't stop her. when she got to the stage, she ripped the cloak off and held the mic to her lips, starting the set with a vocal yelp and a cover of a bauhaus song.
"shoes that no man would want to wear..." she moved around the stage erratically, swinging her mic. she fell to her knees and sang directly into the faces of the people she was eyelevel with. "into the borrowed course, under the dreadful birds. under the singing soil and all those guilty clouds..." when she looked up, she saw ollie and he smirked proudly.
next to him were her father and mother, and as she continuously sang, wipe away my eyes..."it dawned on her why she felt so uncomfortable at the mention of her parents earlier on.
"stop the music," she muttered but the band kept playing having not heard her. "i said stop the fucking music!" she screamed, the lights above her shattering. something felt wrong about this whole set. when she turned back, she saw ollie moving through the crowd to come up to her, but her focus was on her parents which stood back. "you're not real. this isn't real. you're both dead."
there were excited mutters from the crowd, and a few heavy eyerolls. this wasn't one of those things, this wasn't staged. this was real. "you both died." her voice shook with uncertainty as she watched her unmoving parents, not coming towards her. ollie reached for her and she gasped.
the plant loosened it's grip on dinah and she let out feral cry that caused every fluorescent light above her to break. she heard people talking and when she opened her eyes, she saw people cowering away from her as she came to.