Red X: Just looking out for number one.
Note: There will be fondling… so those who don't really like that, just skip over the paragraphs with the kissing and stroking. … Eh, actually, most of it is fondling. Nothing serious, though, so don't worry too much about your innocence.
Raven Roth smoothed down the front of her satin dress self-consciously. Though she wore a polite smile, in her head she was stabbing Robin again and again. It was his fault she was standing along the wall of a vast ballroom in a stranger's mansion, wearing pumps and being completely bored. Sure, the Titans must maintain a good public image so people would not hate them, but did she have to come to these moronic parties?
The majority of those attending were the rich and famous. Ladies paraded around in bright, bejeweled dresses with so many diamonds hanging from their necks, it was a wonder they didn't walk around with their chins touching their chests all the time. Old men were the primary male occupants of the room—ten middle-aged men had come to hit on her in one night, only to go away thankful what made them male was still present—a harassed Raven was a force to be reckoned with.
After the last gray-haired millionaire had pressed his lips on her hand—Starfire was right to recommend gloves—Raven threw him across the room and earned a glower from Robin (PR!) and suppressed titters from the ladies, who were now looking over at her every once in a while and bursting into more fits of laughter.
Cyborg received dance invitations after every dance finished—the women were all interested in a man with muscles, cybernetic or no. Beast Boy amused himself with two young girls in the corner, practicing corny lines on them. Not surprisingly, they were both blonde. Starfire and Robin spun around the room, oblivious to everyone (including the people whose toes they stomped on) but each other.
Raven, unfortunate, lonely, bored-to-death Raven, was left to herself.
A group of men walked by and nodded to her. She gave another tiny smile, one of those cold hellos-and-goodbyes-at-the-same-time smiles.
She couldn't believe she was actually in a gown. It was a dark maroon shade, with white trim at the bottom of the skirt and a low, sloping back. The spaghetti-straps were little burgundy braids intertwined with white thread. She wore a single ring with a small red stone on her left pointer finger and kept her chakra on her forehead, donning high-heeled maroon shoes, shoes that not only pinched her toes but also limited her ability to run. Robin had assured her that there would be no need for crime fighting in the middle of a gorgeous party like this (gorgeous? What kind of straight guy said gorgeous?), but Raven was not reassured.
And it seemed she was right. A hint of black among the pastel skirts of a group of chattering women caught her attention. Then, a little further away, a scrap of tattered cloth, a kind of cloth she knew well.
Her eyes widened. You've got to be kidding.
But, alas, the gods above were not, for a gloved hand, observed only by Raven, unclasped a necklace from the neck of an inebriated woman and slipped away.
Raven started moving immediately, her instincts kicking in. She needed to get across the room to catch him, but first she had to make her way past dozens of dancing couples and some disaffected gentlemen to where Red X disappeared. She found herself looking down a corridor, the light fading from the brightness of the ballroom to pitch black. The hint of a moving shoe in a patch of light alerted her, and she started off again, taking flight so her footsteps would not mask Red X's. Besides, how fast would she go, running in those dratted pumps of hers?
After a couple of minutes, the footsteps stopped. Raven panicked, speeding up to see where he could have gone—not that she could see anything in the dark, anyway. It was this way that she collided head on with a hard body. Arms went around her shoulders, pressing her against him as they fell onto the ground from her momentum.
"Hello, beautiful," he purred into her ear.
She was torn between laughing and growling. In the end, she settled on an annoyed, "huh."
"Did you miss me?"
"As much as I miss sour milk."
"Ouch. And I thought I was more of a rotten apple kinda guy."
Despite herself, Raven grinned. "Don't think that one kiss changed anything between us," she said, though she was trembling at being held so close to him. He had taken off his mask, and now his chin was pressed against her forehead.
"Then how about another?" One of his hands lifted her chin and he kissed her soundly, trailing his tongue along her bottom lip before he pulled away.
"That doesn't change anything, either," she said in a squeak. She had a hold on her emotions, however precarious a hold it was, so nothing shattered or imploded. She did not need her teammates coming to look for her while she was in this… embrace with an enemy.
His hand moved from her chin to her back, his fingers stroking it gently. "I like this new change of costume," he whispered. "You look good in red."
Raven pulled herself from his arms and pressed a hand at his throat. "Do you think I'll wear this everyday, just for you, my one and only love?" she said, dipping each of her words in liquid sarcasm. "Now, hand over that necklace you stole, and everything else you pilfered."
"But you do admit you love me," he teased.
"Necklace," she said again, blushing fiercely.
"That's alright. I'm interested in you for now, too."
"For now?" Raven asked incredulously, fighting the urge to give him a good whack about the head.
Suddenly, his hands came up to wrap around her arm and he flung her back down the corridor. Raven soared, but caught herself before crashing down—she didn't want to rumple the dress. As she set herself back onto solid ground, arms came around her waist and she was hoisted onto a shoulder. "Of course for now. Do you think I'm the kind of guy who settles down? Now… to accomplish what I should have a long time ago."
A door opened and closed, after which Raven was thrown onto a bed.
"We do need to consummate our love, don't you think?"
Raven could not deny that the idea appealed to her slightly, but eighty percent of the other part of her being was screaming, NO! Not like this! Raven stood up, and made for the direction where she was thrown. Again, she bumped into Red X, who pinned her arms at her side and moved her to the bed again. "Naughty, naughty," his said, and kneeled down with his legs on either side of hers. "Don't try to run. This may be the last time a man gets Raven Roth in bed. After this, I'll be torn limb from limb, I just know it."
"Don't joke about your death," Raven shot back.
There was a momentary pause, and then he moved off of her. The mattress sunk beside her, and she could see a faint outline of a body next to her. "You really can't take a joke, can you?" he asked, one hand coming up to rub at his temples.
"What girl wants to be raped, by the guy she likes or not?" Raven asked. She made no move to get up, though, because she liked the sensation of Red X lying besides her.
"Raped?" he said, then laughed.
Raven scowled, but then changed her expression when his fingers wound with hers tenderly. She knew he wasn't going to say he was sorry, that he had gone too far. It just wasn't his style. She didn't really mind, though, because that was how he was. She could feel his apology in the way his thumb rubbed hers.
They laid there in comfortable silence for a long time, enjoying the feel of each other by their side.
Then, Raven leaned over and kissed him. It was hard kissing someone in the dark, and she missed him the first time and got his nose, but then found his lips at last. His hand found their way on her hip, and his fingers progressed the curve of her posterior. When he found it, something exploded outside the room, resulting in the screams of many.
"Oh, for Azar's sake," she muttered, pulling away from under Red X. "Give me the necklace and go. My friends will come looking for me now."
Red X placed a finger on her lips. "Shush. Not yet." He pulled her into a closet in the room and set her on his lap, planting a kiss on her neck. Starfire broke in a moment later, called 'Raven,' looked around, and then left.
Outside, they could hear calls of "Raven! Raven!" and "Yo! Rae!"
Raven pressed her face between X's shoulder and neck, taking in a deep breath of his scent. Something heavy clinked around her neck, but she didn't really pay attention to it.
After planting a couple of kisses on her neck and down her shoulder, Red X pulled her out of the closet and whispered something in her ear.
He was celebrating the six-month anniversary of their first kiss.
Raven was surprised, but knew she shouldn't be. It was just like her to forget something like that over the annoyance of the night. As he backed away, Raven touched her neck and found a chain now hanging there. It was the pendant he had stolen before. Heh. Who would have known that Red X had a romantic side?
His belt clicked once, and the faint outline of Red X's body faded into the dark of the rest of the room. Raven shook her head as she exited, still rather unconvinced what just happened, just happened.
She encountered her friends, gathered around a group of reporters, and held out the pendant Red X had given her. "There was a thief here," she announced, knowing her rumpled appearance would give the illusion of a battle. "He had almost stolen this necklace. I was able to stop him and obtain the goods but he, unfortunately, got away."
Declining any questions, and returning the necklace to its startled, half-awake mistress, she exited the party and stood by the T-Car. Cyborg eventually came out, a quizzical expression painted on his face.
"Don't ask," she said, shaking her head.
"'Kay. Wanna get back to the Tower?"
"No. I'll stay here. You go dance."
Cyborg shrugged. "It's not like there's anyone I really want to dance with. You ok?"
"...Red X was here, wasn't he?"
Raven stared up at Cyborg, color rising to her cheeks. "What would make you think that?"
"The fact that he came up to me a couple minutes ago and told me to give you this..." said Cyborg, frowning. "I don't approve of whatever's happening between you and him, and don't tell me nothing's happening. But I won't tell. I didn't read it. Go ahead."
He handed her a note, folded twice, on a small notecard. X's writing was a thin script, edging on a messy scrawl. Raven read his message three times in succession, ignoring the pain flowering in her chest, and at last ripped the note to shreds.
Cyborg took her hand and led her to a small bench, where she sat down and stared at the flowers.
"The note. It's over."
Cyborg took a seat next to her and placed his hand on her back in a comforting gesture.
"I'm fine. I knew it wouldn't work out, anyway."
Cyborg struggled for words, and at last settled for nodding with a sympathetic expression.
Raven smiled sardonically. She really should have expected it.
I have a girlfriend.
We can't go on.
And there. The epilogue. Finally. After months of not updating (sorry...), I have finished Hunt. Done. Forever. Yeah. Thanks for all the reviews!
Disclaimer: Teen Titans, not mine, no copyright infringement intended, etc.