'...Of this I know, of this I see;
All those things I cannot be.
Two paths to choose, the choice to be done,
Which is it to be? The Moon or the Sun?
Despair or Happiness?
Laughter or Tears?
In this choice, lie my fears...'
-'Following Shadows', Me
Disclaimer: Well... I have about enough cash in my account to pay for a packet of chips... that tell you anything?
Well I'm back! Not that happy with this one but then again I like my writing. I apologize if this is too reminiscent of a certain episode, but you'll deal.
Eveeee90: It's ok, Raven's not dead, calm down...=p
Defafaeth Mechqua: =p
gackt anime gurl: Yes, candy is good! As for Raven coming back... Please don't hit me!
BlackShadou: Awww... that was soooo nice! I won't let it!
Blue Fire Krazed: I love you too. =D
Dark Weezing: But I liked Johnny! Ah well...
Black Syaoran: Well, I hope it has the ending you imaged... one more chapter, then we'll see, won't we?
DarkWolfBlade: Want some tissues? =P
Erica X Lea: You know, you're the only one that's asked me that. Ah well, keep reading then you'll see!
NavynBabyBlueSuedeShoes: I'm flattered, Babe. =p By the way, thanks for the pick up lines, I have a surprise for you when I finally post up KOTTT. =D
Flyingpiggies: Kirkor sends his love to Kitchen appliances and Co., and wants to know if they would like to join his Cult for World Domination (It's actually MY cult, but that's characters for you: Always taking the credit).
Lady Lire SnowStorm: Wow, thanks. Like I said before, I really don't like my work much, but if people enjoy it, I'm always happy!
idoliar: Thanks for the chocoies! Hope you like this chapter!
Thank you to the others that reviewed, sorry I didn't say hi, but I still love you all! Hope you like this one, and remember: Vote 1: WORLD DOMINATION!
This one's for AnimeCatdagon, because she loves Eclipse so much. =D
Following Shadows-Chapter 18: Following Shadows
"You will obey me"
"I will obey you" Raven muttered, her will to fight gone.
They had forgotten about her. All of them. Cyborg, Starfire, Beast Boy... Robin. Trigon had shown her... they had already packed away her things, and were cleaning out her room. She had even heard them talking.'The sooner we can forget about this, the better'
She hadn't even been gone a day, and they already wanted to get rid of her memory.
Trigon had sensed her despair, and moved in, saying that all humans were the same and she should join him. "The Darkness is in you," He reasoned. "Why fight destiny?"
Who was she to argue with reason?
"You will follow my command""I will follow your command"
So far, the initiation ceremony was doing well. The Stalking Lights were there, her Father's many demons, and the ever so wonderful Mr. Tootsie, who was standing by her father's side, beaming proudly. "My best student," She heard him say to his neighbour, a tall grey demon. "Topped class, she did""You will fight by my side, as the Lady of the Shadows"
"I will fight by your side"
Trigon paused, and the fire before him burned higher. "And finally, you will one day rule as the Queen of the Dark, ensuring terror to all who oppose you"
"I will take your place faithfully, Father"
"Now stepped forward into the Flames of Rebirth, Daughter, and truly join us"
Raven did so, not caring what happened. Her fate was set. The flames flared up around her, giving the desolate teen a new lease of life. Suddenly things didn't seem so bad. In fact, the idea of taking over the world made Raven smile in anticipation.'Raven, fight it!' What? What was that? 'I know you can do it, you've battled him for years, don't give up now!' The last of the old Raven paused, remembering the voice. Someone called...
Eclipse.No, it couldn't be. Eclipse was dead. He was killed. Murdered...
'Come on, sis. Don't disappoint me. I know you can do this. You're too good for these losers, just like you're too good for that Dead End waiter'Dead End waiter? Oh, that's right... Wayne, wasn't it?
'Beat Trigon's ass. You could so do it, just like you could so kiss Wonder Boy silly. Hang on, scratch that, DON'T kiss Wonder Boy. You might catch Perfectionitis'
The corners of Raven's mouth twitched. Wonder Boy... that was Robin. Her leader.
Why would she want to kiss him?
'That's what I was asking myself, actually, but hey, there's no accounting for taste. You can't help it if you're in love with Mr. Squeaky Clean, any more than I can help being charming'
In... love? Was she in love with... Robin?
It dawned on Raven as her memories, her real memories came back. Christmas, Nightwing, the New Years Eve dance, Jinx's curse, that ridiculous tea party...
She was in love with Robin, and she hadn't even noticed.
Eclipse's voice was shrewd. 'Took you long enough, didn't it?'
Somewhere behind her, came a laugh. 'Now there's the girl I left behind. So whatcha gonna do now? Flatten Trigon's court till there's no one left standing? Take out Mr. Tootsie first, if you please. He made me write more essays then I can remember, then he had the nerve to call me a brat! Go on, squash him good'
Raven frowned. 'The goal is to stop Trigon from ruining any more lives, not to carry out personal vandettas'
'Meanie. Just because you're a teacher's pet!'
'I am not! You probably didn't study hard-' Raven stopped, remembering where she was. Eclipse was dead, she shouldn't be arguing like this.
'I'm not dead. Not in the way you're thinking. Besides, you really think I'd let a minor detail like the fact I've croaked it get in the way of annoying you?'
Raven still wasn't convinced.
'Think of it this way, if you want to get all poetic. I'm kinda like a... urgh, I hate this flowery stuff... Guardian Angel. Just without the gay harp'
'How do I fight? How do I defeat him?'
'Turn his court against him. Make his own subjects hate him. Spread a lie. You'll be surprised how quick it'll start once word gets round.'
She heard him sigh impatiently. 'While the rest of his followers are tackling each other, get him by himself. He'll be weak, since he depends on the court's ability to co-operate. From there it should be a smooth ride'
"Daughter!" Trigon's voice boomed through the flames, bored. "Are you ready to step out as the Lady of the Shadows?"
Dimly, Raven was aware that she replied.
'You're going to be a tad bit disorientated, but after you step out of the flames you should be yourself. If you want to fool Trigon, just act like... you know... and he shouldn't suspect a thing'
'And what becomes of you?'
'I'll play like a good boy and just keep watch' Even though she couldn't see him, Raven could feel him smiling. 'But I ain't promising anything, if things get tough, I'm gonna jump right in there, ghost or no'
Beast Boy figured the cloak in his hands sadly.
The task of cleaning out Raven's room had fallen to him and Cyborg, since Robin couldn't bring himself to take a step in there, and Starfire wanted to make her pudding of sadness.
Carefully placing a stack of books into a box nearby, Cyborg shook his head. "Can you believe how many books she had? Look at this, Edgar Allan Pooh, or Poe-however you say it, Shakespeare, Anne Rice... J.K. Rowling? Imagine that, Dark Girl actually reads Harry Pothead... K. Parr, something about Wicca... Didn't know Rae was a witch" He glanced up at Beast Boy, who hadn't been listening.
"Why are we doing this?" The smaller, greener boy asked suddenly, his hold on the cloak tightening. "Why do you want to get rid of her?"
Nudging the now full box of books aside, Cyborg just said, "I don't wanna get rid of her. I just don't think she'd appreciate us wasting our time in cryin' over something that can't be changed" He picked up the handheld mirror Raven had kept for meditation and sighed sadly. It brought back a lot of memories. "She wasn't like that, short stuff, and you know it. She wouldn't want us to let it ruin what we're fightin' for"
Beast Boy was still for a moment then dropped the cloak into the box. "I know. And I won't let it"
Ducking as a blue-skinned demon went flying past her, Raven grimaced. Everywhere she looked, monsters and creatures of various nature were pounding each other into the ground. And all because she had said to one gullible looking minion, "Trigon is looking for new help"
Trigon is looking for new help. That had been all. Trigon is looking for new help. How under paid were these... people?
'That is not the point' Scolding herself, she weaved through a tumble of fighters. 'You are looking for Trigon, not sympathizing with his followers'
An unpleasantly familiar voice droned at Raven's left. "You know, if our father caught us trying to stir up his empire, he wouldn't be very-"
"Happy. But then again, sister dear, that is the reason we-"
"Killed him. Yes, I suppose you have a point"
Not amused, Raven muttered, "Parie and Paris. How typical"
Both twins beamed, acting as though they had just been reunited with an old friend. "Come now, Raven dear," Paris mocked, his eyes gleaming. "You can not still be upset about our abducting you from your home and bringing-"
"You to your hated father's abode, can you?" Finished Parie, a cunning look all over her face. "I say, that's awfully immature, especially for someone with your-"
"Bloodline. Why not make up to daddykins, wait till his not looking, then bump him off? That's-"
"What we did! And let me tell you, it was the best thing that ever happened!"
"You two are sick," Raven muttered tightly, glancing around her as she did. "And when I get out of here, I swear I'm going to hunt you down and subject you to every nightmare you've ever had, until you go crazy. Now, move out of my way"
"Well, why wait?" Paris asked seriously, he and his sister wearing twin expressions.
"Because, I have to go find Trigon" Giving the pair the evil eye, she moved forward, expecting them to stop her. Instead, they parted, and bowed down to her.
"Good luck, Raven." Paris started, smiling in his creepy way. "I really wouldn't mind seeing-"
"You having fun, for once" Finished Parie, who's own smile was just as creepy.
Raven, too stunned to reply, watched as the grinning twins teleported out of the hall.
That, was the scariest thing she had ever seen, including Beast Boy's tofu surprise.
Beast Boy... No, she couldn't think about the others now, she had to find Trigon.
And destroy him for once and for all.
"Robin?" Flying over to his side, Starfire tentevly held out a bowl of evil-looking gray goo. "I know it will not bring back friend Raven-"Here she began to choke up. "But I wish to mourn her as is traditional on my home planet"
Robin looked down at the bowl in his friend's hands, then up at her grief-stricken face. She was hurting too, he remembered. He wasn't the only one who cared that Raven had... died.
But he was the only one who had... loved her.
"Star," Robin started, figuring it was now or never. "Star, I can't do this. I can't do us"
Staring at him with shadowed eyes, Starfire said nothing. She knew this would happen. She had seen what was going on, and when she didn't understand it, Beast Boy had been more than happy to explain it.
Robin was not hers anymore. And watching as his pain tightened his face and made him unrecognizable to her, she realized he never would be again.
"I... I don't know how to say this, Star, but... I'm... I was... I..."
"I know, dearest friend Robin," Starfire said quietly, looking out over the rooftop where the two teens were. "You have shared feelings with Raven... and no longer wish to share any with me"
Fiercely, Robin turned to her and grabbed her hands tight in his. "I do! You are the most wonderful, amazing person I have ever met, and I mean that! I love you, but I don't... love you"
Starfire looked into his eyes, and saw his misery, but somewhere in there, she could see the truth of what he said.
Smiling slightly despite the hurt, she said in her most understanding tone, "At least we are to remain friends. I am happy with that"
"Best friends" Robin said firmly. And the smile he gave back made her feel just that little bit better.
Raven made her way down the dark corridor connecting to the Hall she had just been in. She had a feeling that Trigon was down here, and that he was waiting for her.
Soon, each step became harder to take, and Raven was soon fighting the urge to turn tail and run.
She must be close if this was happening.
"So, you have deserted the chance to join me, Offspring" Came Trigon's voice, surrounding Raven in the darkness.
"I'd call it more of a curse," She spat back, standing still.
There was a deep rumble, and then suddenly the hall flared up with a burning red light, illuminating the tall, foreboding demon that was her father. "If you will not join me, then I will destroy you"
Gathering up her power, Raven just gave a grim smile. "Let's go"
Trigon smirked, then, without warning, brought his hand up and swung it down, a ball of fire heading straight for Raven. Instinctively, Raven flew up, barely escaping with a singed cloak. Surrounding herself with a force field, she reached into every corner of her mind, calling up her emotions.
'What do you want?'
'I need your help'
'I need to destroy Trigon'
'We've only ever fought his representation; the real one must be more difficult'
'I know, but we have to try, for the others'
It was if all her other selves were thinking this over. Raven could feel them remembering, both the good and the bad.
'...From the day I designed her, I knew she was gonna be special. And I worked so hard...'
'...Wakey, wakey! Tofu eggs and bakey!...'
'... I did not know we were meant to bring shovels...'
'...Raven, are you ok?'
Starting to buckle under the strain of having to deflect Trigon's shots, Raven yelled, "Hurry up!"
There was a moment of sudden silence, then all her emotions, all the shadows of her, said, 'Hold on'
Raven could feel the various emotions as they poured into her, Happiness, Timidness, Bravery, Intelligence... Anger... they were flowing through her, melting into her veins...
Colours flicked around her, pink, grey, green, yellow, orange, red... but there was a new one. It glittered around her, sparkling in a way the others weren't.
It was a soft, lilac colour, shimmering with blues.
Before she could define it's meaning, the collective powers hit her, and Raven's shield broke.
Here was Trigon's chance to be rid of the pesky offspring that had fought him all the way. With a quick flick of his hand, Trigon sent another fireball towards her, expecting Raven to be too weak to send up another field in time.
Instead, just before it hit her, Raven lifted her arms, and stretched them out, catching the ball with a flash of white light.
Trigon frowned as his weapon evaporated, frazzling out as it touched Raven's power.
Where did she get such strength?
Lifting her head, Raven smirked, her power forming a sword of light in her right hand. Bringing it up over her head, she spat, "This is for my mother" Then she brought it down quickly, slashing Trigon's chest.
The demon roared, trying to collect his own power. Making his own sword, a large, red blade, he swung at her, nicking her leg.
Raven snarled, then returned the blow, slicing Trigon in the shoulder. "That was for Eclipse"
Before Trigon could recover, she brought the fiery, white sword up again, then back down, yelling, "And this is for everyone who've you made suffer!"
Trigon screamed as the blade cut through him, the feelings for her friends, and the emotions for every one of his victims giving her power fuel. There was a blinding flash of red light, then everything was thrown into darkness.
Raven landed on the ground, panting as her powers faded. She couldn't feel the evil anymore, couldn't feel the shadows.
It was over. It was finally over.
Kirkor bolted up from his seat, every nerve in his body tight. Beside him, Nightwing, Raven's cat, stretched, not noticing a thing.
Dark eyes wondering over the harbor, Kirkor could feel someone drawing nearer to the Titan's tower.
"This can't be good," He muttered. Picking Nightwing up, he muttered, "Come on, let's go warn the kids"
Then, he closed his eyes, and disappeared.
AN: Oh no, what's going to happen? Just as Raven's finally won, will her nightmare come true? Will Robbie be the one to kill her? Will the others ever eat Star's pudding? And what about Eclipse? Heehee, guess what? You're just going to have to read the next (and FINAL!) Chapter! Gasp! It's kind of sad, being only one chapter off, this was my first story and I don't really want to let it go... oh well, I can always write others! =P
Live long and prosper! (I HATE Star Trek... is that where it's from?)