It's okay to feel anger, he tells himself.
It's okay to feel greed, he tells himself.
It's okay to feel... It's okay.
No one thinks he's capable. It's something he's dealt with all his life and even this far into the game, he can feel it radiating from judgemental stares. They don't believe in him, they underestimate him, they don't think he's capable. But he is. He's the most capable person there is for any job in the universe. Space sharks need taming? Okay. The Highfather has returned? No problem. The Guardians have lost their little fucking blue minds and need to be lobotomized? Well...maybe he wouldn't go that far, but he still knew how to placate them.
Kyle Rayner was capable. He was trustworthy. He was powerful.
Maybe it was his counterpart that made those things null and void. Kal was not successful in any aspect of his life. Girlfriend? Gone. Education? Useless. Job? Nope. The only thing he had going for him was the fact that he had a pretty great best friend and two cats that tolerated him, and even that was questionable at best. It was hard to prove that where you are from, you are a powerful being when the person inside of you is a mediocre, inadequate piece of meat who skates under the radar and has a martyr complex the size of Germany. Well, the latter went for both of them.
He's alone in the desert, cursing to himself that he didn't just leave and let the others find this stupid space gem. He's walking by himself because he needs time away from the world, but can't bring himself to actually leave the planet. This gem. The space gem. It means nothing to him, and yet he's aimlessly meandering through sand dunes and tripping over ill-placed tufts of grass that he somehow doesn't see.
Space gem. Space gem. Kyle Rayner, guardian of space sector 2814 and 0000. Space. Space. How is he of all people not capable of retrieving this? He lifts his hand. "Ring, scan for space gem," the sound of his voice mimics a small child mocking their parents. "Fucking space gem," he mutters as his ring scans. "Scanning for space gem.....scan inconclusive." Scoffing, he kicks the dirt and keeps walking. Fucking space gem.
Inside, he churns. Whether it's his stomach from being hungry, his anxiety, his anger, something in him is moving. He lifts his hand again. "Ring, scan for space gem," he orders again, and within seconds receives the same message as before. "Whatever," he mumbles, the hint of a fuck you clear as day in his voice.
If this was something he was dealing with that was from his own universe, there would be no problems here. The gem would have been found days ago and he would have been back in San Diego with Carrie and his cats, making a list of pros and cons about staying on the west coast. This was an inconvenience, not only to him, but the people on his team. Yeah right. There was no way they didn't deem him equally as incapable and underwhelming as everyone else did. They didn't know, he couldn't blame them. No one knew.
"You're a Green Lantern?" people would ask, and he'd nod his head, but long before he could proudly tell them about himself, they'd laugh. "You mean like that horrible Ryan Reynolds movie?"
He was going to keep track of how many times that was brought up in conversation, and the next time he saw Hal Jordan, he was going to punch him in the fucking face for letting that movie be a disaster. He could've stopped it. Thanks to that absolute hot mess of a movie, people assumed Kyle was no better, but the truth was, he was so much better. He was a White Lantern. The only one of his kind. One of the most powerful living humans in his universe. He was the backbone of the Green Lantern Corps, bringing it back to life after a Parallax Hal Jordan murdered every member in cold blood. He was special. He was the Torchbearer. The Chosen One.
"Ring, scan for the space gem." His voice was full of annoyance, full of anger. He could feel his insides churn again and he grunted, trudging through the dark desert. "...scan inconclusive," his ring replied and he yelled angrily. "Scan for space gem," he demanded again, and as before, the ring replied in the same manner. He wanted to find this gem. He needed to find this gem. For his team, he'd remind himself, but that wasn't why at all. He needed this gem for himself. He needed it to prove to the world that he was capable, that he wasn't to be underestimated or ignored. He was there and he was powerful and he could do anything.
He was urged not to touch it if he found it. But what happened if he would? Would he get more powerful? Would he disintegrate? Would the entire planet just blow up? It wasn't his curiosity that drove him, it was his hunger for power. If he could just find it, he could prove his worthiness. He could prove that he was so much more than the movie version of Green Lantern. He was Kyle Rayner, White Lantern. Space Jesus. Kyle moved forward, his ring continuously scanning and coming back with inconclusive searches. "Keep going," he muttered, haphazardly running a hand through his hair. "It's gotta be here somewhere."
Whatever was driving him continued to push him forward. It was nearing dawn and he realized he'd spent all night in the desert looking by himself. He was tired, his ring was running low. Kyle hears a rustle in the desert behind him and turns around quickly, an orange construct errupting from his ring in the shape of a large fist.
"Oh, shit," he mumbles. His power ring reaches 0% and his suit and mask dissolve and leave him in his civvies. He's dirven by a lust for power. Avarice takes over and he's thankful that his ring is dead.
Incapable, inadaquate Kyle Rayner is left alone in the desert with his battery stashed with the rest of his junk. His hunger drove him through night. Without the power of his ring, he doesn't feel the same pull. He needs to reevaluate what it is he's really after out here in the desert. Power or acceptance?