By Blackheart Syaoran

AUTHOR: Thanks for reviewing and sorry for the wait!

TO Dark Weezing: Do your best (in the name calling, that is).

TO SaturnMax: Chances are, but she won't be treated well, since I don't like her.

TO spandexmonkey: No, you made that bit up.

TO dillpops: The rating stays.

TO GothicShadow: The powers question is a secret.

TO Tsukasa/SIGN: Actually, Raven has no last name. If you read the older comics (the ones dealing with her origin, or DC Who's Who), or check the DC Comics homepage, it says so.

TO Noriaki Kakyoin: Amused you? Well, my job just got so much harder, then. Besides, I support Batman/Hawkgirl pairings. I'll explain why they're married next chapter, okay?

TO Lady SnowStorm: It's my favorite pairing too. I like you name. And isn't your "people-kill" tagline from Batman and Robin, spoken by Uma Thurman's Poison Ivy?



Chapter 2: The Rape, The Rescue, and The Romance











Faintly, Robin heard the buzzing of his alarm clock, but choose to attempt a five-minute extra nap. Besides, six in the morning is much too early to get up at.

As he curled up in the covers of his bed, he thought he heard some soft poundings, followed by a squeaking noise—right before he screamed and leapt out of bed.

"Mom!" he shouted.

"I warned you fair and square at dinner last night, young man," she said unashamedly as he glared at her. "If you weren't up when the alarm went off, you were open game."

Robin frowned, looking at his bed, which, like he, was now soaked with water. Sighing, he moved to a pile of clothes near the window and began sifting through it, looking for something at least partly clean to wear.

"Don't you ever clean up this mess?" Shayera asked.

"Why? I can always find what I'm looking for in it."

Shayera shook her head. "I swear, when you leave for school, I'm going to come in here and clean everything."

Robin froze like a statue upon hearing those words. He turned to his mother, gaping. "You can't!"

"Give me one good reason—and it better not be something involving that Anders girl."

Here, Robin frowned again. "I don't know why you beat up on Kory; she's a nice girl."

"I do not beat up on her!" Shayera said indignantly. "I merely consider her a waste of your time and love."

"Exactly: You beat up on her."

Shayera rolled her eyes and moved to leave, but then stopped, turning back to her son. "I forgot to tell you, Mr. Slade, your principal, called last night. Woke your father up."

Robin grinned, the implications amusing him. "And?"

"Slade said that there's an opening on the basketball team if you want to try out for it."

Robin sighed. The man was never going to go away, was he? "I don't know," he told his mother. "I'm not sure how I'd feel playing on The Hive."

"You'd probably do a lot better than you would on the Titans, that's for sure."

He knew she had a point there: The Titans were a fairly tough football team, which is why the players were almost always guys like Vic and Mammoth.

As he thought this, Shayera said suggestively, "You'd catch the eye of a pretty girl…"

Robin groaned. "The only girls I know of who are pretty and watch The Hive play are Jinx and Blackfire."


"Jinx is Cindy Hex, and Blackfire is Cammy Anders."

"And you call girls names like these because?"

"Because Cindy is into witchcraft and that sort of stuff, and Cammy has black hair and wears dark clothes."

"You'll never get dates with them talking behind their backs that way."

"You're beating up on Kory again, Mom."

Shayera looked unabashed. "I'd rather you date a girl with some brains than Kory Anders."

Robin cocked an eyebrow. "This coming from the woman who struts around in front of her impressionable young son while wearing nothing but a yellow bra, red panties, and green socks?"

"What are you insinuating? I have a perfect sense of style!" Shayera said proudly. She then smirked. "Besides, in case you've forgotten, I used to see you naked when you were little."

Robin's face turned bright red. "Mom! I don't wanna hear that!"

"Hey! You poke fun at your mother, she gets to poke fun at you," the woman retorted as she left the boy alone.

Heaving a relieved sigh, Robin resumed searching the clothes pile and found what he needed. Putting the articles on, he rushed downstairs and into the kitchen, hastily making himself a breakfast consisting of Fruity Pebbles. He so needed something healthier.

"Are you going to try out for the school basketball team?" Bruce asked as he strode into the kitchen, straightening his necktie.

"I don't think so," Robin replied. "Having Slade watching me would be really creepy."

"I could do you good. Teach you how to stay on task."

Robin frowned on hearing that last part. He didn't like people rubbing his mistakes in.

"I should be getting to school," he told his father before he left the kitchen, grabbing his backpack from where he had left it in the foyer, and briskly strode out the door.

Inside the house, Bruce shrugged almost coldly at his son's behavior and slipped on his business jacket. Shayera came down the stairs, having heard the door slam, and he told her, "I'll be home late tonight."

"Any particular reason?"

"Selina Kyle and Dr. Minerva want to engage my in one of their 'corporate dinners.' "

Shayera frowned. "You need to get a restraining order on those women. You're married to me, for God's sake."

"I know."

"No, you don't. If you knew, you'd let Robin know the truth."

"You mean that Selina has convinced herself she's Robin's mother and that Dr. Minerva wants to replace you as my wife?"

"Yes, that truth."

"He doesn't need to know."

"Dick and Barbara know!"

He shrugged at the names of their two older children. "They're older than Robin. Dick's managing that Nightwing band of his, and Barbara's in her sophomore year of college. Robin's just a boy."

Shayera scowled and stalked off.


He had only been hurrying down the sidewalk for a moment before his name was called.

"Robin! Hey, wait up man!" Vic yelled, hurrying after his friend. "What's the deal? You look pissed."

"Bad talk with my parents."


"Kory and Slade."

Vic nodded understandingly. "Your mom still wants you to get a 'real girl,' and your dad wants you to be more responsible?"

"Exactly. It's like they don't get that I've got enough to worry about."

Vic hesitated before asking, "Did you tell Kory about Raven Trigon?"

Robin blinked. "No. Why?"

"She called me and Gar last night, demanding to know why her boyfriend was having lunch with a psychotic cultist."

Robin felt his blood chill. Crap!


"Stop it!" Raven screamed. "Stop it stop it stop it!"

She banged her head against the nightstand again, barely registering the pain. Still, the voices persisted, echoing in her skull. Clutching her head tighter, she curled even further into the fetal position she was already in and started weeping.

Why can't I be normal? she asked herself. Why do I have to be the little freak? Why do I have to hear things?

Abruptly, she stood up and, before she knew what she was doing, slammed her forehead down onto the nightstand. Just as the pain started to set in, she smacked her head into the wall. Her knees gave out then, and she collapsed onto her back, crying.

"Just leave me alone!" she yelled, her voice cracking.

As if on cue, the door opened, and Raven's mother, Arella, poked her head inside.

"You should get ready for school," Arella said in her timid voice. "You don't want to keep them waiting." She then left, as simply as she had appeared.

Raven knew she meant both Thaddeus and Sebastian. During the rather subdued dinner last night, Thaddeus had made it quite clear that Raven was "to go nowhere without" her deranged "brother." Knowing that protestations would only lead to more trouble, Raven had acquiesced to her father's decree.

Gotta get ready for school, she thought. Gotta help them

She shook her head sharply, wondering where that last thought had come from. She'd been thinking strange things lately, and while she indeed yearned for true friends, the ones she sometimes thought she knew didn't make any sense. At times, she knew why she attempted to talk to Robin Bird, but at other times was mystified. Was she supposed to recruit him into the Church? If not, then what, and why?

Later, she told herself, and grabbed the necessary black clothes. After dressing, she grabbed her backpack and descended the stairs, where her father waited at the front door.

"Do not disappoint me today, daughter," he warned darkly.

"I won't, Father," she replied, and hurriedly left the man's presence.

But only to meet another.

"Hello, Raven," Sebastian Blood greeted. "It's good to see you."


"Hey!" the blond girl yelled.

Unfortunately, the boy she was chasing didn't stop, and so she pumped her legs harder. Steadily, she began to gain on him, and when she was a couple feet away, she leapt, tackling him to the hallway floor. Around the pair, students watched, seemingly mesmerized by the event.

"Hey, get off!" the boy said. "I didn't do anything!"

Tara Markov, though, ignored his protests and forced him onto his stomach, cuffing him—with real handcuffs, to boot. She hauled him to his feet, and began marching him straight to the office, barging into one chamber in particular and disregarding everyone's stares.

"Got another one, Boss Man," she reported to the figure at the desk.

"Aw crap," Roy "Speedy" Harper groaned, staring at Mr. Slade's hard visage. "The Terminator. I'm screwed."

"Yes, Mr. Harper, you are in trouble," Slade confirmed. "Now, run along, Tara. The halls need their Hall Monitor, and I can't have your unparalleled skills dulled."

Beaming at the compliment, the girl left.

"Take a seat, Mr. Harper," Slade said, pulling a file from one of the multiple file cabinets behind his desk. "You are in for a long day."

"Another detention is fine with me."

Slade eyed the young man. "I'm afraid a mere detention isn't going to suit you now."

Speedy's eyes widened. "You're giving me a Saturday?"

Slade leaned forward, lacing his fingers and putting his elbows on the desktop. "No. I have something very different in mind for you, my dear boy."

"And that would be?"

"Helping me."

"You're joking."

"No, what I'm doing is asking you to take an interest in a friend of yours, Robin Bird."

Speedy snorted. "You want me to spy on Robin for you? Now I know you're joking."

"Again, this is no joke. I want you to talk to your friend about where he intends to take himself in life. He doesn't seem to pay attention to me, and thus ignores my attempts to secure him a position in the future world of employment."

"You mean that whole 'apprentice' thing? He told me about that."

Slade smirked slightly. "Yes, I imagine he did. The point is that while I am attempting to help him, he is pushing me away. I would appreciate it if you spoke to him for me."

Speedy hesitated before asking, "Let me get this straight: You want me to ask him to basically sell you his soul?"

"Nothing that harsh. I'm only trying to help the poor lad. I have repeatedly made it clear to him that he possesses phenomenal skills, and would do well playing on the school basketball team, The Hive."

Speedy paused again. "You know, considering you're kinda the scariest person at school, I don't know if I should run out of here screaming or run out of here screaming bloody murder."

"It really is an easy decision to make. All you have to do is talk to Robin and encourage him to join both the basketball team and the dojo. After all, I hate to see such potential go to waste."

"I don't know—"

"NOBODY CAN CATCH LIGHTNING!" a boy's voice proclaimed loudly.


"BROTHER!" a deeper boy's voice shouted. "I AM COMING!"

"YOU STAY OUT OF THIS!" Tara snapped.

As the sounds of the chase outside died away, Slade asked, "So, do we have a deal?"


"Another transfer?" Mr. Light said, sounding incredulous.

Robin Bird glanced over at the physics teacher, who was standing just inside the doorway. Personally, Robin didn't give a flying whatever about the teacher's problems.

Sighing, Light waved the person in. "You might as well be accepted. It is not as if I can refuse the principal."

The student entered and, as they stood at the front of the classroom, Robin looked up, and found himself staring into the pale face of Jinx. Inwardly groaning, he maintained his outward composure as Mr. Light said, "Class, since it is not in my power to say no to Principal Slade, Miss Hex will be joining us from here on out." He paused to eye the clipboard and seating chart on his desk. "Take a seat to Mr. Bird's left, Miss Hex."

Robin felt his breath catch in his throat. Quickly, he glanced to his left, and saw to his horror that the seat was indeed empty. Curses, he thought as Jinx sat down, slumping slightly and looking rather at-ease in her Goth attire. Great. As if having her affect my relationship with Kory wasn't bad enough.

As Light turned around to draw something on the blackboard, Jinx whispered, "Hey."

"What?" Robin whispered back.

"What're doing tonight?"

"What do you care?"

She smirked enough so that he could see it. "Wanna have some fun?"

His eyes narrowed. "What are you talking about?"

The smirk remained. "There's a party Blackfire's hosting tomorrow night, at this warehouse or someplace. Wanna be my date?"

Robin looked at the girl with an expression of disgust. "You have to be kidding me."

"Come on. It'll be fun." She produced a black tape recorder from her pocket and tossed it into his lap. "Listen to it."

Blinking, he stared at the device. It was just like the recorders that people used to record their voices and "notes to self." He wondered what Jinx could possibly have recorded.

Abruptly, the bell sounded, much to the chagrin of Mr. Light. The students, like a swarm of ants, gathered their belongings and flowed out of the door, all too eager to leave the haughty man's domain.

Robin made his way towards his next period, but chose to duck into a bathroom and hide in a corner. He knew hiding in a stall wouldn't do any good, since someone could come in and spy on him. Taking a deep breath, he rewound and played the recording.

"Hello? Is this Mrs. Bird?" a woman's voice asked.

"This is she," replied Robin's mother.

"Glad to reach you. This is Alicia, Cindy Hex's mother. Your son should know her, if only by the name Jinx."

Robin wasn't surprised to hear that; it only confirmed his suspicions that children's nicknames were known by the parents.

"I know about her," Shayera said. "What about?"

"Well, my daughter was telling me how she and your son had made plans—"

"Hold it," Shayera said. "What do you mean, made plans? My son's currently involved with something—and I mean that in the romantic sense."

Alicia Hex laughed weakly. "Uh, yes, I'm sorry. I should've clarified. What I meant is that Cindy and Robin agreed to go to Jump City Nights, tomorrow. I was hoping to tell you about the agreement so you wouldn't be worried."

"I'm pretty sure my son would have told me."

"Yes, well, I guess I got impatient."

"Obviously. Is there anything else you wanted?"

"No, that was it. Sorry to bother—"

There was a click as Shayera hung up, and Robin smirked. The tape ended, and he pocketed it, feeling rather puzzled. Why would Jinx want to go out with him, and why would her mother lie to his like that?

Figure it out later, he told himself, leaving the bathroom and moving quickly down the hall, intent on getting to Gym. There, he'd be able to talk to his friend, Speedy. If he hasn't been caught running in the halls again.

As Robin passed a classroom, though, he stopped upon hearing odd noises emanating from beyond the closed door. Frowning, he moved up against the door, and as he listened, his heart began pounding as he realized what he was hearing.


Raven wanted to scream, but the rubber ball gag Sebastian had strapped to her head was preventing any sound from escaping lips. She could, in fact, do nothing but silently protest Sebastian's treatment of her as he continued to rape her.

True, he hadn't violated any area other than her ass, but Raven was quite furious. She wanted to break the handcuffs he'd clapped on her and show the nasty little boy just who he was messing with—but while she remained "in chains," there was nothing she could do.

Nothing but lay on her stomach on the table, feeling his icky hands grope her cheeks as he brought himself closer and closer to a climax.

"You know, sister, I can't imagine a reason why our parents haven't led us wed just yet," Sebastian commented, still raping her. "It's prophecy that we'll be married. We should have been enjoying ourselves some time ago."

Bastard, she thought viciously as he ran his fingers through her hair.

"Such lovely locks," he complimented. "I told you that I really liked you, remember? This is part of the reason I do---UUGGGH!"

As Sebastian grunted, there was a sharp crack, and she felt him pull out. A thud sounded behind her, and she guessed he had collapsed onto the floor. Before she could cry out for help, she was pulled off the table, the handcuffs and ball gag being removed.

"Robin?" she asked, staring at her rescuer.

"Yeah," he said, eyeing Sebastian's body. "What'd he do to you?"

"What do you think?" she asked sarcastically. "He raped me."

"I meant where did he rape you? In the V-section?"

Raven cocked an eyebrow. "The 'V-section'? Do you have some kind of problem saying 'vagina' or something?"

Robin blushed slightly. "This happens when I do."

"So you blush; so what? It happens to everybody."

He eyed her for a second. "You should go to the nurse while I report this piece of trash."

She shook her head. "You don't understand. That'll only make things worse."


"My father is a very powerful man."

Robin cocked an eyebrow. "You're saying the police work for him?"

"Maybe. He's got a lot of influence."

Robin frowned, not liking what he was hearing. "You should at least get yourself cleaned up. He butt-raped you, y'know."

"Yeah, I know. I was the victim, Einstein."

"There's no need to be rude."

"I know. I was—" She sighed. "Look, can I just come over to your house after school?"


"Call it escapism. I just need to stay away from my home for a while."

After a moment of consideration, he shrugged. "Sure, I guess."

She nodded. "See you then."

And without another word, she redressed herself and left. Robin turned back to Sebastian's unconscious corpus, dark ideas swimming in his head…


"Yo, Robin!" Speedy called, running over to his friend.

"Huh?" Robin said, turning.

"Where ya headed?"

Robin jerked a thumb towards the cafeteria. "Lunch."

"Mind if I join you?"

"I guess."

Speedy grinned. "Good. I was hoping to talk to you about something," he said as they entered the cafeteria.

Robin opened his mouth to ask what, but at that moment, Raven came over, carelessly pushing Speedy aside. She took Robin's arm and began steering him towards an empty table, which had only her lunch tray and food on it.

"We need to talk," she said.

"What?" he asked, but she ignored him and forced him into a seat before taking her own.

"We might be in trouble."

"What, for beating up Blood?"

"No, for being friends," Raven said, keeping her head down but glancing around with her eyes. "Slade's going to try and do something. He'll probably try to distract you."

Robin cocked an eyebrow. "Distract me? How?"

"Oh, Robbie-poo!"

Robin froze solid, as though the Ice Age had returned and specifically targeted him. He didn't have to look to know that Kitten Walker, perhaps the most insidious girlfriend in the world, was approaching; he could feel the air around him go stale.

Stopping once she reached the table, Kitten looked from Robin to Raven, a pronounced frown on her face.

"Who are you?" she asked.

"Somebody who doesn't like to be bothered," Raven replied.

Kitten glowered at her. "Then shove off to a new table. Robbie-poo and me are using this one."

When Raven didn't reply, Robin thought she might have given in to Kitten, perhaps already aware of the blonde's psychotic temperament.

And then, without warning, Kitten's face-vaulted into the table, and then slid off, ending up a heap of pink on the cafeteria floor.

"Told you that Slade would try something," Raven said. "We need to talk somewhere private."

Robin stared at Kitten's inert body and asked, "Did you do something to her?"

"Maybe, maybe not."

As Raven stood up and walked away, Robin knew he had little choice but to follow her, leaving Speedy to rot in the cafeteria.

He'd be easy prey once Kitten awoke.


"Nice house," Raven commented dryly as she stepped into the foyer.

"I guess," Robin replied. After several attempts to call his mother, he found a note she had left on the kitchen counter, telling him that she was venting anger at the gym with her friend, Diana Prince—again. Robin sighed wearily as Raven quickly read the note.

"Your mother actually tells you she vents anger at the gym with some other woman?"

He nodded.

"What do they do? Ladies' wrestling?"

Robin snorted. "I wish. My mother practically destroys the gym whenever she goes there."


He sighed again. "Because she only goes there when she's angry and needs counseling from Diana, but the counseling is always countered by her anger, which causes her to get into fights."

"With other women?"

"With everyone. She got in a fight with a guy named Grodd the last time she went there."

"What happened?"

Robin smirked. "She knocked the crap out of him. Her friend, Diana Prince, said my mom slammed a weight into his face."

Raven cocked an eyebrow but said nothing. After a moment, she looked back to the foyer and said, "Come on. We need to get to work."


Diana could feel her jaw drop as she watched Shayera bench-press an even 200 pounds.

"Great Hera," the black-haired woman gaped. Though many thought her a pagan, Diana Prince was merely a reverent archeologist with a degree in anthropology. She was a bit of a history nut when it came to the ancient Greeks and Romans (always siding with the Greeks), and had earned herself a bit of fame by publishing a highly successful fiction series about a tribe of Amazon women living on an enchanted island.

"Same here," Shayera grunted as she set the weight down onto the catch and sat up. "I guess I can take a break now."

"I'll say." Diana handed her friend a towel. "Any reason why you decided to drop to only two hundred today?"

Shayera's expression was a cross between a grin and a grimace. "Several, actually."

"May I have the good reasons first?"

"Sure. Robin says there's a certain someone at school—who isn't the Anders girl."

That remark caused a small smile to play across Diana's face. From Shayera, she knew all about the so-called girl troubles of young Robin Bird.

"Any other good reasons?"

Shayera shook her head. "Just bad from here on out."

"Well, we'd best get it over with."

"Bruce is having an alleged company dinner with those two alley cats, Minerva and Kyle."

Diana's face darkened. She was all-too aware of the two women and their attempts to get the renowned Bruce Bird all to themselves. Though it was unproven, many speculated that Minerva and Kyle were related. Personally, Diana only cared about them if Shayera ended up killing the two. After all, she'd have to help cover up the deaths, being Shayera's friend and all.

"You know Bruce well enough to expect him not to betray you," she told Shayera.

The other shrugged. "I still don't trust anything involving those two sluts."

Diana sighed. "You probably never will." She then perked up. "At least you trust your family."

"Got that right."

Diana smiled, glad to see her friend back in a pleasant mood. "Ready to bench some more, tiger?"

"Hawk," Shayera corrected.

"Both of them are terribly awful, if you ask me," said a snobbish woman's voice with a British accent.

Shayera whipped around to find a woman very much like Diana standing nearby. For working out, she sported a black leotard, magenta sneakers, magenta wristbands, and a magenta headband.

"Nobody asked you," Shayera said coldly. "And I suggest you back off before I make you."

The woman frowned. "You're not a very nice person, are you? If I had to guess, I'd say you were either a construction worker, an alcoholic, or just plain abusive to whatever people associate with you." She paused. "And judging by your clothing, you're desperate to get laid," she said, nodding at Shayera's yellow sports bra, red bikini bottom, green socks and red sneakers. Fortunately, she didn't pick on Diana, who was clad in a red sports bra, a star-spangled blue bikini bottom, and red sneakers.

For a long moment, nothing happened. Diana glanced back and forth between Shayera and the new woman, inwardly hoping her friend would try her best not to start an actual body count. Still, Shayera was predatory by nature…

And then that fact was proven.

Giving a battle cry worthy of an Amazon warrior, Shayera leapt onto the woman, tackling her to the floor. The redhead's fists were smashing into their target before either woman had even hit the gym's floor.


Raven stared at the poster, almost entranced by her own incredulity.

"You actually like 311? I thought you were into rap."

Robin shrugged. "I do. But I also like good music in general."

"Can't argue with that."

"I notice you like your Goth music."

"Don't go there. It'll hurt."

Wisely, the boy did as he was told. Setting his backpack on his bed, he asked, "What did you want to get to work on?"

"Getting out of here."

"What are you talking about?"

Raven waved her arms around in an encompassing gesture. "Everything—this town, the people in it—everything is not supposed to be." She paused, and looked down to her feet. "At least, I think it is."

Robin frowned. "It either is or it isn't, right?"

Raven shook her head. "It's not that simple. Something keeps trying to tell me the truth—or at least what might be the truth—but I keep shutting it out."

"You're kinda confusing me."

Raven sighed. "It's like this: I hear voices, and they keep telling me to get help and escape." She shook her head. "The thing is, I don't know who to help, or where to escape to or from. I'm in the dark about everything."

Robin's brow furrowed. "But if you don't know anything, then how can you try to help or escape?"

"I said I was in the dark. That doesn't mean I don't know anything."

"So what do you know?"

Raven looked away from him as she said, "I think we're supposed to be superheroes."

Robin stared at her for a long moment…and then burst into laughter. As he regained his composure, he asked, "Superheroes? Are you serious?"


"Then what are my superpowers?"

"You don't have any."

Robin grinned. "I'm a superhero with no powers? That's kinda dumb."

"You're smart. You use your skills to beat people."

"Like who?"

She looked him in the eye. "Like Slade."

Robin gaped at her, barely able to believe what he was hearing. "I beat up Slade? No way!"

Raven managed to keep a serious attitude. "This isn't funny. Slade is extremely dangerous—"

"I'll say. He wants me to play basketball for the school."

Raven frowned. "I'm not kidding. Slade is your biggest enemy. He keeps trying to kill us all and make you his apprentice."

"He's trying to do that here too. Wants me to work at his dojo." Robin paused, frowning at Raven. "Wait a second—you said you didn't know anything. You're starting to act suspiciously, you know."

Raven matched his frown. "Look, I already told you that I'm in the dark. I don't know everything, but I know some. What I've been telling you is all I can remember."

Robin nodded. "Had any strange dreams lately?"

Raven eyed his suspiciously. "How do you know?"

"It's what happens in the movies."

"This isn't a movie, this is—"

"HONEY, I'M HOME!" bellowed an almost drunkenly cheerful woman's voice.

Robin's eyes went wide. "Oh crap! My mom!"

"What's so bad about your mother?"

"She's kind of free spirited."


"She might take you being here as something of a family omen."

"Could you be any more vague?"

"In other words, she might think I've broken up with Kory Anders and have started dating you."

"What's so bad about that?"

"Knowing my mother, she'd call Kory up and tell her the good news personally."

Raven frowned. "You may not know this, but you can stop acting like everything depends on your mother. I need your help."

"But I can't—"

The door abruptly swung open.


Five minutes ago:

The front door opened and, supported under one arm by her friend Diana, Shayera Bird ambled into her house.

"We showed them!" Shayera crowed.

"We sure did," Diana agreed as she directed her friend to the kitchen. In truth, Diana had only helped a little, while it was Shayera who had taken out the woman and then several interlopers. Setting her friend onto a stool at the kitchen counter, she said, "You need to rest for a while."

"Who needs rest when I've got grandchildren in the making!"

"What?" Diana asked, taken aback by the other woman's words.

Shayera pointed, and Diana saw that there were two sets of wet footprints near the front door, heading towards the stairs, and quite possibly up them.

"But Robin could be with that Logan boy or that Victor Stone," Diana suggested.

Shayera shook her head. "Guys don't wear that size or style. I'll bet my wedding ring Robin's got someone all to himself up there."

And without another word, she stood and strolled into the foyer and up the stairs, heading straight for Robin's room. Judging from the slight increase in light under his door, he indeed was in there. Shayera grinned devilishly and gripped the doorknob, images of her devious little boy dancing through her head.

Without preamble, she flung the door open, crying out cheerily, "Who wants cookies?"

When she got no response, she opened her eyes to find Robin and a rather dreary-looking girl lying on the boy's bed, the latter atop the former. As the woman continued to watch, stunned silent by the two, the couple kept up their make-out session, with Robin reaffirming his grip on the girl's hips.

Blushing profusely, Shayera swiftly stepped out of the room, closing the door behind her. She returned to the kitchen and resumed her seat, watched by Diana's curious eyes.

"Well?" Diana asked. "Is he up there?" At Shayera's nod, she then asked, "And?"

Shayera's stunned-silent expression turned to a more pleased one. "He's got himself a spicy little number."

Diana's eyebrows rose. "Really? I thought he was dating the Anders girl?"

Cackling, Shayera shoot off the stool and snatched up the phone from the counter, punching in numbers. "Not anymore, he isn't!"


The moment the door was closed, Raven pushed herself off Robin, staring at him.

"What was that for?" she half-demanded.

"It was all I could think of," he answered.

"Pulling me on top of you and making out with me was all you could think of?"

Robin shrugged. "It worked, didn't it?"

At that, Raven scowled fiercely and grabbed her backpack, marching out of the room.

"Raven, wait!" Robin called, hurrying after her. By the time he caught up, she was halfway down the path from his front door.

He grabbed her arm, but she jerked it free, snapping, "Leave me alone! You obviously don't want my help!"

"Maybe if you made sense I'd be willing to listen!" Robin retorted. "In case you've forgotten, you're the one who hears things!"

To his surprise, Raven executed a perfect kick to his midsection, which sent him flying back to his front steps.

"Just leave me alone," Raven said before hurrying off.

Groaning and rubbing the sore spot on his body, the boy slowly got up. As he did so, the front door opened and his mother stepped out, beaming.

"I've got Kory on the phone. She's very eager to talk to you."

Puzzled, Robin took the phone, put it to his ear—and recoiled as Kory Anders' voice roared at him.


"Kory, calm down!" Robin said. "It isn't what you think! My mother—!"

"I will have none of your excuses, Robin Bird!" Kory barked, less loudly but still very angry. "As far as I am concerned, we do not know each other!"

There was a click, and he realized she had hung up.

Great, he thought despondently. Raven wants to help me but won't, Kory hates me, my mom's probably convinced herself and her friends that I'm dating someone she approves of, and Slade is still on my case! He sighed. This is not my day to shine.



AUTHOR: Good? Bad? Better, perhaps? Let me know!