Changeless Scars

AN: Ok, so here we go with another round. I'm glad I got done with the last chapter, because to me the whole plot revolves around "Act two." All the stuff I wanted to write is in this section and the next. So, yeah, I'm excited. Anyways…… Sorry this took so long, I had an uber mind blank again.

Disclaimer: I don't own the Titans. I also don't own any other DC comics character mentioned. I don't own Alexander Pope or Lord of the Flies, which are briefly mentioned. DUDE! I love Lord of the Flies! That's like, one of my favorite books! It's great! I also don't own Johnny Cash, another amazing person. Or Poe.


Beast Boy's room is dirty.

It is spawning sentient creatures.

Raven runs for her life.

Ok, so not much else to say. On with the show. Most people know who Kori is, but if you don't oh well. I guess you'll find out. The name "Rodan Katsuma" is my own invention, but he is someone that is NOT and OC.

By the way.

Smoking kills.

Sorry about my lack of knowledge concerning movie sets. I've never been to one, only seen it on television.

IMPORTANT: For those of you who despise Beast Boy/ Starfire, don't worry. It ain't really there. There mostly just close friends here. Nothing more. Star only gets the strong silent types in this story AKA Robin and someone else who will become obvious eventually.

Act Two: Nobody's Home

The lines were drawn. On one side, seven heroes stood at the ready. On the other side stood the four thieves.

Nightwing stood in front of his team, double staffs at the ready. He gazed upon the enemy, apprehension tightening his muscles. At the head of the other team stood Red X, his twin pistols in his hands. Behind him stood the Wolfman and Hawke. And above them, floating in mid air, was the girl. Her violet eyes blazed with hatred, twin katana blades spinning around her in a deadly pattern. She sneered directly at him.

The battle was about to begin.

Scene One: Behind Blue Eyes

Three years after Act One…

"Hey, baby! So I was walking this morning, and guess whose beautiful face I saw? Only the hottest model and actress of the year! You were all over the magazine stand, baby!"

If one thing, Jonathan Sanders was definitely half-witted. Kori Anders knew this from the first moment she saw him. But, on the other hand, he was rich, handsome, and famous. And that was good for her image.

A small smile lit her face as she flipped a strand of blonde hair over her shoulder. Kori adjusted her sunglasses, looking up at the tall and rugged John. "Of course, honey. What do you think I get paid for?"

The Los Angeles sun beat down on her swimming pool, but she didn't mind. Her tanned skin could use some fine-tuning. John sat beside her, waving the butler over. "Bring me a margarita, will you, Jimmy?"

James, the butler, stiffened slightly at the nickname, and then turned to leave. "Of course, sir."

"So, I was thinking, baby, since you have the day off, we should hit the beach or something." John grinned, stretching himself over the chair.

You, thinking? That's rare. Kori frowned, sipping her drink. "I'm on hold, which is not free."

"C'mon, baby! Forget about work for a day!" John exclaimed, turning on his side.

Kori stared at him, astounded. "Forget about work? Might as well just throw away my life! You know that people like us can't just throw away our work! It would be a social disaster, idiot!"

John stood up, angered. "I know that. It's just…we don't have any time for us anymore."

"Our jobs come first, John. Our relationship is just leisure." Kori hissed and turned away as her cell phone rang. John scowled and turned on his side, grabbing the margarita from James as soon as he returned.

Kori rolled her eyes, as her agent began chatting excitedly.

"Kori! I know I told you we had a photo shoot scheduled for today, but I had it moved to tomorrow. Instead, I want to get you a new fitness trainer. There's been a rumor that a new action flick is in the makings, and they want you. I figured it was a perfect opportunity to get rid of that idiot you have training you now. Be ready in an hour. I'll send a limo over."

Kori sighed. Her agent didn't believe in asking her opinion. Such was the life of a model and actress. "Right, Ben, I'll be ready."

"So, Mr. Katsuma is actually a friend of mine. I've recommended him to many a client. He instructs every kind of kung fu ninja crap you can think of. Most importantly, he keeps people in good shape. Of course, you'll have private lessons." Ben Henson rattled on the entire trip in the limousine. Kori nodded at appropriate times, fiddling with a strand of her golden hair. Her mind was on John, who was currently mad at her. She didn't care though. He was replaceable.

Finally, the limo arrived at a big building. It was a plain building, with nothing particularly extravagant about it. Kori followed Ben, placing her large pink sunglasses back on her face. The walls were all a simple white. At the front there was a counter. Beyond that, there was a huge, matted expanse. It was the size of a gymnasium. One long wall was completely covered in a large mirror. Along the other walls were racks of various weapons. Punching bags and other such practice items were also set up. At the back, there were three enclosed rooms for private lessons.

As Ben went to the front desk to speak with the person behind it, Kori watched the class that was currently occurring. About twenty-five adults stood perfectly space from one another. They all wore white uniforms, and held bo staffs. At the very front, facing the group, was a tall man. He was also dressed in a white uniform, but his black belt, with several stripes to signify his importance, stood out from the others, for they all wore brown. Apparently, they were not yet at his level. The man had a stiff face, and by his features, he looked Japanese. Kori assumed that it was Master Katsuma.

Beside Katsuma, though, was a tall young man. He did not look exactly Japanese. His hair was black and, for the most part, straight. It was slightly longish, but cut so that it set at a curl at the nape of his neck. His facial features, though, set him apart. He had cold brown eyes. His jaw was strong, and he looked as if he was scowling. He was following Katsuma's motions expertly, helping teach the class. Kori decided he would have been incredibly handsome, were it not for the scowl.

"Kori, hon. You are all scheduled up. This class will end in about ten minutes, and then we're going to meet Katsuma." Ben ushered Kori to one of the ten seats that faced the matted expanse. Kori did not protest. She didn't mind acting like a jerk to John, but Ben controlled her life. A life she didn't care about.

Soon enough, the brown belts left after a lecture from Katsuma. Most of them looked at Kori in awe. The model simply rolled her eyes. Even living in Los Angeles where stars were often seen, some of the "normal" people still acted like idiots. After the room was vacated, Ben strode towards the Master, with Kori trailing behind him.

"Master Katsuma! Good to see you! I'm sure you know Miss Anders…" Ben excitedly shook the Master's hand. Katsuma nodded solemnly to Ben and then moved to Kori.

"It is good to meet you, Miss Anders." Kori politely shook Katsuma's hand, but did not speak.

"I've signed Kori up for private lessons. Her current fitness program is not efficient enough for the modeling business today, so I wanted her to try something knew. We have her signed up to start tomorrow."

"Ah, I see. I don't suppose, Ben, I could have a word with you?" Katsuma eyed Kori and then strode a distance away with Ben.

Kori stood by herself, save for the stony glance of the young man. He stood a mere ten feet from her. She glanced at him, and their gazes locked. Icy brown met bright blue in an odd glance of apprehension. The man eyed her over, and then sneered.

"What's your problem?" Kori rudely asked. She didn't care though. She was Kori Anders. She was famous. No one would treat her that way.

The young man scowled his constant scowl and moved within conversation distance.

"I don't like famous people. They're all a bunch of stuck up jerks." The young man hissed, so that neither Katsuma nor Ben would hear.

Kori was aghast. "How dare you! You don't even know me, idiot." She muttered back. He smirked in a way that made her skin crawl with hatred.

"I don't have to, princess."

She stopped and stared at him. Something about the way the nickname rolled off his tongue struck a note of familiarity. Kori cocked her head, a frown encasing her lovely features. His voice sounded similar to one of the past, someone she never wanted to think about again…

"Hey, Kori! I was talking to the Master. He has recently been instructing his son on how to give private lessons, and he wondered if you'd be interested in being the guinea pig. I told him, of course! So, you'll be training with his son. Don't worry, he's fully trained and certified." Ben strode over, unaware of the odd moment between Kori and the young man.

Master Katsuma followed. "Yes, Miss Anders. I would like you to meet my son, Rodan Katsuma." He gestured to the young man next to Kori.

Kori smiled gracefully. "It's good to meet you, Master Rodan." She spat out the "master" with contempt.

"Same to you too, Miss Anders." He equally emphasized the "miss" with hatred. The two held each other's stony gaze. Ben smiled, ignorant to the loathing right in front of him. And instant loathing it was.

Scene Two: Voices of the Past

"You're late, princess."

Kori threw here gym bag to the floor of the private training room. She glared at Rodan, who was casually smoking a cigarette.

"That's disgusting. Your lungs are going to resemble asphalt before you're even twenty-five."

"Pity, princess. Seeing as I'm twenty-three, I guess death will have come early." Rodan stepped on the offending cigarette, and then trashed it.

Kori scowled in disgust. "Don't call me princess."

"Let's get started on the first lesson, princess." Rodan removed his jacket, so that he was left in a black wife beater and similarly black sweat pants.

Kori stripped out of her jacket, and faced her instructor. She herself wore black sweat pants, though she had a green tank top. Rodan looked her over in an odd way that made her feel uncomfortable. He cleared his throat. "Well, at least you don't wear all pink fluff like the other airhead actresses we teach."

"You really don't like my business, do you?"

"I thought the answer would be obvious. Now, let's start off and see what level you should begin with. I'm curious to know if you can hold yourself in a fight, or if you're simply an idiot girl with muscles."

Kori frowned. Of course she knew how to fight. Despite the fact that she had rarely needed to use what she knew, her old friends had still stressed she learn a basic knowledge of fighting hand-to-hand. Not that she wanted to think about them. But it was necessary to recall what she secretly knew.

Rodan lunged at her, going for an easy flip. However, she evaded just as easily, letting her body slide so that she could snap a low kick at him. Rodan, having the better training, leapt over her foot. He turned to face her.

"I see you're not stupid, princess." Rodan scowled his customary facial expression, and then threw a few punches. She could tell he was not trying to hurt her as she blocked them all. She let her eyes close as she continued twisting and moving in defensive positions.

It felt good to feel the bend in her muscles and adrenaline from a good fight. She let herself remember how it felt to spar with him, how they would dance a dangerous and powerful fight. How they would lightly touch one another. How, though it had been a fight, she would shiver when she felt his warm breath. This almost felt like that, except then she had used her flying ability too. But she hadn't flown in years. Kori didn't even think she could anymore. There was no joy in her heart.

She flinched as one of Rodan's punches finally flew home to her side. It didn't hurt exactly, it just left a slight sting.

Rodan stopped, a slight sweat on his brow. He met her tired blue gaze. "I believe, princess, I took you for granted. Mind you, you're barely aggressive at all. Nevertheless, where the heck did you learn to do all that?"

Kori smirked. "That's my business, Katsuma." Rodan raised an eyebrow.

"Never call me that. Ever. Clear, princess?" He hissed.

She was surprised by his sudden outburst. "Crystal."

Three months later…

Kori sipped her water laxly. She didn't mind the fact that the training session had been particularly grueling that day. Her movie deal with the action flick was sealed, and she was in perfect shape for it. Rodan had worked her hard, and she now knew more than just basic moves. She was well schooled in several forms of fighting.

It had come to her like an art. Her people felt that war was just another art. She had known the fighting style of her people, and now she knew many earthen styles as well. A small smile lit her lips. Kori wondered if she could beat him now.

Kori's eyes drifted across the private training room. Rodan Katsuma stood across the room, putting away the protective fighting gear in a storage closet. In the months they had been training together, they had formed an odd relationship. Playful insults were still thrown. Part of her still loathed his angry and cynical manner. However, she had learned of his other side. He was passionate when he fought. To him, it was the only escape and ventilation for his tumultuous feelings. Rodan was also incredibly intelligent. He appreciated many forms of good literature.

She herself had turned to schooling herself well in the past three years. After many years of being naïve to the earth, she had taken to teaching all the ways of man and had consequentially become quite a lover of books. She read anything she could, anything she could comprehend. Many a time after her lessons, she and Rodan had discussed the finer points of Alexander Pope or the meaning behind Lord of the Flies.

Kori felt a small bit of happiness inside. It was refreshing to be able to relate to someone on a deep level. Often in the acting and modeling business, there was shallowness to the perpetrators. Not so with her fitness trainer.

Rodan finished putting away the equipment. He almost left the closet, but stopped. He paused momentarily at a rack of wooden swords. Finally, he drew four swords, putting them under an arm.

"You up for some overtime, princess?" Rodan raised an eyebrow, his icy dark eyes filled with pent up frustration.

Kori eyed him warily. She was tired, but he intrigued her. "I don't have anything on schedule for the rest of the day. Why not?"

Rodan nodded, throwing two of the katana practice swords to her. She caught them both, curiosity in her expression. "What are we going to do?"

Rodan began twirling his wooden blades casually. "Sparring. I know we've practiced with one sword before, but I'm curious as to how you do with two."

"Well, sounds interesting enough. Let's go." Kori stood up from her position against the wall, bearing the two swords outward at her sides.

Rodan fixed her with his powerful gaze. It was one she was used to, one that caused her spine to tingle. His eyes were looking her over like she was going to be prey to his lack of fulfillment. Like he was hunting her.

She had been a quick learner to his ways, easily mastering everything he threw at her. Her people were natural warriors. Fighting was like second nature to her. Well, first, now that her "caring" personality had dissipated.

Kori easily imitated his stalking footwork, matching his with her own light-footed pace. She held the practice swords wide away to each side.

Each was waiting for the other to make the first move. Kori decided easily how to approach her opponent. She lunged at him, and he instead readied himself to parry and strike. He was about to make a quickened hit to her unguarded side, but she changed course at the last minute. Instead, she twisted behind him, moving to hit him with both swords. However, he just as swiftly moved the swords in cross motion behind his back. He caught both her wooden blades, and flipped up into the air.

Rodan landed to her side, but she moved to attack him. They moved fluidly in perilous dance that was battle. They twisted and leapt around one another, parrying, blocking, and striking. Each blade met its counterpart, never touching flesh. Rodan was a master of long taught lessons. Kori was a natural born fighter. They engaged around one another in vicious pirouettes and threatening capers. It was an intriguing twisting of two bodies with only the sweet notes of their heavy breaths and pounding feet as their music.

Finally, Rodan was able to hit her wrist, knocking a sword out of her hand. She blocked his onslaught to the best of her ability, but eventually lost her other sword. He pushed her against the wall, a sword at her neck and waist.

The two stared at each other intensely, both reflecting on the battle instead of the impingement between them. Their breaths slowed in unison, bringing the dance to a close with the final touches of deep gulps for air.

Kori mentally located in her memory what he had done to overcome her, how she could stop it in the future. Rodan closed his cold brown eyes, taking his exhaustion into account. In battle, he hardly noticed the toll the frightening speed took upon him. Now, once they were done, he could feel numbness biting at him. He invited it.

Rodan dropped the swords, and moved over to where he kept his water. Kori followed suit, finding her own. Once they had re-hydrated, Rodan looked at her.

"You did well, Princess. Better than with one sword. You could have easily overtaken almost anyone that had not mastered the art, despite what they were armed with."

Kori was surprised by the complement, but took it with a nod of her head. After sipping her water some more, she looked back at him.

"You know I'm leaving in a week to film in Steel City."

"Yes, I know."

"I've been meaning to ask you something. I want to stay in the best possible shape during filming, as I am playing an assassin. I wanted to know if you wanted to come with me." Kori finished tentatively. They had started off as enemies, but he was now the closest thing she had to a friend. It was a reasonable incentive for him to come, but it was untrue. She really could not bear to go several months without their playful banter or deep discussions. She had been alone for too long.

Rodan chewed on his tongue, eyes barely warming as he pondered. He finally turned, putting away the swords. When he emerged from the closet, he answered, "I mean, I guess my father will have to do lessons on his own. I'd have to cancel my other private lessons. You are our best payer, though, and…"

He stopped as she broke out into a grin. It was the happiest he had ever seen her. "Thanks, Katsuma, you're my hero."

Rodan watched her go, scratching the back of his neck.

"If only you knew…"

"Kori, hon, I don't know about this movie thing. We already signed and stuff, but seriously. Gar Logan isn't exactly the most successful actor. He's the king of summer horror flicks, but nothing big, like you've done."

"Look, Ben, I don't care. I'm trying to sleep."

"But Kor, hon, seriously…"

"Are you bothering her?" A deep voice came over the back of Ben's plane seat. Ben shivered, turning around slowly. He met Rodan's dark brown eyes with a shiver.

"I…uh…of course not!" Ben grinned sheepishly over his first class seat. Rodan smirked coldly, returning to his seat behind Kori.

Ben breathed hard, and then leaned into the actress. Kori had her eyes closed and her head on a pillow.

"Why did you have to bring him?" Ben hissed. Kori smiled, even though her eyes were still closed.

"I like him."

"Why would you ever be friends with some jerk like that?"

"He scares the crap out of you."

Scene Three: A Touch of Remembrance

A knock resounded on the dressing room door. They were to begin in exactly an hour, and Kori wanted to take every second of the time she had left to listen to music and run over the script for that day's scenes. The building was stocked with costumes and equipment. There were several rooms that were used for makeup application and dressing. Kori sat in one such adjacent room. There was a door to the building, and a door to the outside. Apparently, someone from the outside was here to bother her. She groaned at the knock.

Kori had forced herself to rise an hour early, merely so that she could have some peace before a day of hectic shooting. Despite the fact that it was four forty-five in the morning, she was wide awake. And apparently so were others.

"Come in." She groaned, tucking a strand of her mussed blonde hair behind her ear. The door to her dressing room opened quickly and Ben entered.

"Kori, why are you here already? They don't start work for another half an hour! You need rest, baby!" Ben was hyperactively awake, his usual manner. Kori sighed, turning down her music slightly and putting down the script.

"Ben, I'm fine."

"Now, Kori, you know…"

He cut off when a strong hand was put on his arm. "She said she was fine, Mr. Henson." Behind him, silhouetted by the wakening world, Rodan Katsuma glared darkly at the shorter man. His dusky features were cast over into an even deeper darkness by the brilliance that begin to take hold of the world. In short, his tanned face was frightening to behold.

"I…I…I'll be leaving now." Ben bolted from the room with utmost enthusiasm, leaving Rodan and Kori alone. The blonde actress smiled up at him. She found him utterly endearing at times.

"I couldn't sleep. My hotel room is boring." Rodan droned stiffly. Because he had no actual part in the movie besides sparring with her when time allowed, he stayed in a hotel not far from the set. Steel City was large and mechanical, but there were indeed the occasional hotels. The virile young man closed the door behind himself, taking a seat on an unoccupied chair. Kori turned to face him, idly holding her book.

Her blue eyes coasted over his expression, wondering at the visit. He too eyed her, wandering of the face he now knew as his only friend. It soon became uncomfortable to stare at one another, and Rodan instead glanced at her book.

"Poe? I didn't know you liked him."

She smirked halfheartedly. "I like a few of his poems and stories."

"I like the stories. Poetry is too thick with laments or joys about love. It's all very repetitive." Rodan explained, leaning over. He was clothed simply in a black T-shirt and black leather pants. Kori noted that she couldn't really see him in any other color.

"Love isn't a terrible thing to read about. It controls so much about us…" Kori frowned, distancing herself mentally. Rodan noticed the drift in her mood, and decided not to inquire of such.

"It's simply verbose."

"You can't understand it unless you've been in love. Listen.

'But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-
Of many far wiser than we-
And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee…'"

Kori finished reading from the book. "Even after death, he still loved her with his whole heart. Not that all loves are that way…" She distanced herself again, moving away to long forgotten territory.

That was the funny thing about Rodan. For some unknown reason, he brought her to memories and musings she had long wished to completely forget. His presence forced her into the introspection of her past life. It threw her off. And he knew he did it to her.

But he never asked. Why did he never ask? He could see it every time she left, every time her mind had the inclination to revisit long untrodden places. She turned to him, watching Rodan gaze at her. It made her mad. If he forced her to such places, why did he never query towards the truth?

And why did he make her remember? What was it about him?

He had never once acted upon the pained look he often saw on her face. Until that day.

Kori suddenly felt a presence that was real, one that was there right then, instead of a past entity. It was true and warm, feeling. It was a strange sensation, being held by Rodan Katsuma.

He had lifted her from her chair and into his impregnable grasp, against his stiff chest. She frowned, not meeting his eyes. Her hands met his chest, and she scowled at them in confusion at the sudden pull from her world of haunting memories of betrayal. Slowly, though, she lowered her forehead to the crook of his neck, taking in the scent she had often longed to dwell on. His tanned skin smelled oddly like the world right after a rain fall, when all is fresh and anew. Rodan, in turn, rested his chin in her dandelion hair, closing his eyes. She had been lost in her memories for too long.

They stayed like that for a long time, unmoving and silent. It was a fragile moment, one that could be flawed and shattered with a single word. And so they said nothing.

But then, there was a knock.

Kori groaned tiredly, slowly pulling from the warm grasp that she had found herself glad to be lost in. Rodan also sluggishly moved away, drugged by the heaviness he had caused between them. Kori moved to the door, opening it.

Outside the door, now clothed in the morning light, was a young man. He was slightly taller than her, with a vaguely muscular build, raven brown hair, and a huge grin. He looked at her sheepishly, and she immediately recognized him as her costar.

"Gar? What are you doing here?" Kori asked, a completely neutral look on her face. The young actor shuffled his feet and looked down in shame when he saw that she already had company.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt anything." He apologized quickly. Rodan moved next to Kori, motioning for Gar to move as well.

"I was just leaving." Rodan muttered, and darkly stalked away. Kori frowned after him, coldness overtaking her.

"I'm sorry, I'll leave." Gar turned to go, but Kori stopped him.

"No, it's okay. What did you want to say? I already know we're starting in half an hour." Kori asked.

"I don't know, I just wanted to talk. Y'know, I kind of wanted to get to know you a little bit. It's easier to act like you love someone when you at least know them." Gar looked embarrassed as he mentioned the story of the movie. It was your regular "shoot-em-up" movie, but there was the romantic subplot as well.

Kori smiled. He was a bit nerdy in his mannerisms, but she generally found him pleasant. "Come in, Gar."

As he passed, the sun glinted on a metal ring on his finger. For some reason, she could have sworn she had seen the dark band before.

Scene Four: Invitation to Disaster

In the end, she decided simply that she had seen too many bad things in the world to cry. Kori sat, staring idly at the cell phone on top the tabloid. She had been given an entire day where she was not required to film anything, and it ended up a disaster.

There, on the cover of the tabloid, was a large picture of Jonathan Sanders making out with a brunette model. Kori smirked. At least she looked like a walking advertisement for plastic surgery. The cell phone call to John simply confirmed the truth. He had moved on. The reason? Because Kori was decent enough not to sleep with him outside of wedlock. It was a completely stupid reason to break up with her, and it proved to her that John was nothing more than another chauvinistic jerk. Kori sighed, moving her azure eyes to the window. On the bright side, she herself knew she didn't love him. She had never loved him.

The actress watched the dreary, starless night hazily. Her room she was staying in was dark, save the vague illumination caused by the muted television. Kori wished momentarily that she had chosen a different path. That she had stayed with her family, and kept her heritage and title. But nevertheless, that had never sat with her. Her sad eyes flicked away from the window, over the television, and to the wall. She glanced back at the television, as something interesting had caught her eye.

She frowned, turning the sound back on. The news report went as such:

"Earlier today, the Steel City Bank was broken into and robbed of thousands of dollars. Police are still on the scene, investigating what they call an ingenious heist. Not only did they break through numerous safe guards, but they knocked out everyone with gas within five seconds of their entry. The only thing they have that indicates the identities of the multiple thieves involved is a very brief tape…"

The tape played. It was a regular scene from the main room of the bank, until three unusual people entered the door. There was a very brief glance of the three, before one pressed a button connected to their belt and shorted out the device. The tape went blank.

Kori tuned out the rest of the report, playing the tape over in her mind. She had always had an excellent photographic memory. The first one in had been masked. He had been carrying a long weapon, probably a staff or a bow. The second had looked fairly normal, but something about his scruffy light hair struck a note of remembrance with her. The third man had been clad in leather. He had worn a helmet that from the camera angle looked to have been some sort of mask.

Kori frowned. Three villains…

Her eyes went wide. It couldn't be…She glanced back at the television, which was replaying the tape. Kori watched closely. The third man, in the end of the tape, inclined his head slightly to the camera. From the angle, she saw the tell-tale white of a skull, and the red x that marred it.

Memories threatened to attack her all at once. The scruffy young man must have been him. The one she let away. The one that caused the riff. The one that inevitably caused her departure.

Visions of screaming, fighting with him. Him.

And suddenly, a knock on her door disturbed her thought process. She rose, breathing deeply before she opened the door. She decided vaguely at the sight of him, that Rodan Katsuma blended with everything night. The moonlight lay across his broad shoulders like the grand mantle of a king.


Rodan looked tired. His normally alert features were drowsy with exhaust and fatigue. "As I've said before, my hotel room is boring, princess."

"Come in." Kori sighed, moving to let him enter the dark room. He stood oddly off balance as he watched her shut the door. She turned to him, cerulean eyes meeting cold chestnut. An awkward silence sat over them. Kori noted to herself that this had happened several times in the past few months. "Do you want to watch TV?"

Rodan nodded, "Looks like you already were." They both moved to the small couch. Rodan seemed very fond of his leather pants, Kori thought as she watched him sit next to her. He sat close to her, and she knew she wished he hadn't. The volume of the TV was still on, so she fixated her eyes on the glowing screen. Rodan sank into the material of the couch, almost as if he was in pain. Kori ignored him, paying attention to the report. There had been a commercial break, but now a reporter was interviewing the chief of the Steel City police force.

"Officer, obviously, none of the criminals were caught. However, I have been hearing reports that one of them was slightly wounded in the heist. Is there any truth to this assumption?" The reporter asked.

"The police force had been alarmed immediately, but could not enter the building, due to the strong concentration of knock-out gas still present in the air. However, apparently, before the thieves made their escape through the roof door, one of the bank employees awoke. He had been only briefly exposed to the gas, as he worked in the back of the building. The employee saw the thieves, and attempted to assault them in an effort to escape the bank himself. He succeeded in hitting one in the back with a metal bar, but then was knocked out by what he describes as a 'demon wolf.'" The chief explained to the reporter.

Kori closed her eyes. So it was them. The 'demon wolf' comment proved it. Her first instinct was to rush to the scene of the crime, and investigate. However, she was no longer a crime fighter. She was Kori Anders, actress and model. There was no purpose in fighting them. The flood of memories their presence brought back was highly unwelcome, however.

"You okay, princess?" She turned her head to Rodan. His features were illuminated in the flashing colors of the television, making him look even darker. Concern lit his chestnut eyes. However, some other unidentifiable emotion burned mercilessly behind it. It was not the first time Kori had seen the fire burning within him, but it was at that moment that she had become aware of what it was burning for. The internal flame of emotion was burning for her. She suddenly found she didn't want to breathe in the wave of suffocating attraction she felt. Their eyes locked.

"What do you want from me, Rodan?" Kori whispered, her blue eyes clouding with confusion. Rodan leaned closer, the concern in his eyes completely taken over by the burning sensation. He grinned oddly.

"Glad you asked…" Rodan trailed off. Kori felt, more than saw him leaning in further. Her breath hitched in her throat, and she closed her eyes.

And then, the phone rang. Kori groaned angrily, springing back from her amorous trainer in sudden realization of what she had been about to do. Kiss her teacher? The thought seemed tempting, but she pushed it away as she walked into the kitchen. Grabbing the phone and composing herself, she answered the call.


"Hey, Kori." A recognizable voice greeted her.

"Hi, Gar. What's up?" Kori leaned against the counter, ignoring the fact that she had left Rodan alone in the dark living room.

"Um, well…you know how we don't have any scenes to shoot on Christmas Eve? Well I was wondering if you were busy during our break…"

"Uh, no, I don't think so…" Kori trailed off, a small smile coming to her face. During the past month, she had easily gained Garfield Logan as a friend. He was an excellent actor, as well as a generally amicable person. Spending time with him would be enjoyable.

"Great!" Gar sounded a bit too excited. "I have some friends who live by the city, and they invited me for a Christmas party. It'll be sort of a reunion type thing, and they said I could bring a date. I mean, it doesn't have to be a real date, if you don't want it to be. It could be like a friend date, but just not really a date, because, you know, I figured you might not be comfortab—"

"Gar, I would love to go with you." Kori smirked at his ranting.

"And you know, friends can—wait, you said yes?" Gar paused.

"Yes, Gar, I'll go on a date with you." Kori rolled her eyes.

"Awesome! I'll pick you up around six on Christmas Eve!" Kori imagined she could practically see Gar grinning like a mad man as he spoke.

"Sounds good. I'll talk to you late, Gar." Kori felt a small smile tug at her lips at his foolery.

"Great! Seeya then!" Gar excitedly finished, hanging up the phone.

Kori sighed, putting the phone back on the console. Suddenly, she felt a sudden rush of warmth behind her.

"Going on a date with Garfield?" Rodan hissed in her ear. Her back tensed, but she refused to be frightened by him.

Kori turned around, and crossed her arms across her chest. "Why yes I am." She eyed him, challenging. "What's it matter to you?"

Rodan grunted angrily, before crashing his lips onto hers. Kori gasped, but not in surprise. A part of her had been hoping he'd do that. It wasn't until that very moment that she realized how much she had wanted to kiss Rodan Katsuma.

He lightly nudged her against the counter, his arms encircling her waist with fervor. Kori kissed him back vigorously, her arms roaming his back. Rodan pulled back for air for a moment, but then met her lips again in another violent kiss.

She encircled his neck with one arm, and let her other hand trail down his spine. Kori found herself lost in the heat of the moment. Suddenly, she became aware that her hand had met some sort of marring on his back. Even through his thin shirt she could feel some sort of bruised and swelled wound on his back. Rodan grunted in slight pain, ripping himself from her grasp.

Kori eyed him, thrown off by his reaction. Someone had hit him there, hard. "What happened?"

He looked straight at her, as if pondering whether to kiss her again or not. His brow furrowed, right before he stormed out the door.

AN: Ha. So after like fifty years, I finally finished another chapter. Never thought it was gonna happen? Well it did.

Preview for next time, if I ever write it: A Christmas party sets Kori face to face with her past. But as Red X and his team scour the city, Kori must choose between returning to her past, or joining a dark future with Rodan Katsuma. (If you all don't know who he is by now, than you need to read the chapter again…)