Training

Raven and Chris sat at the table, eating breakfast. Raven had drawn up a training schedule for Chris. He liked the idea of becoming a Titan, but the extremity of the training was a bit off-putting. She would try to teach him how to move objects like her, but without the darkness and worrying of an evil father's influence.

Beast Boy walked into the room. "Oh Chris, I wanted to ask you something. That monologue you said last night, what was it from?" Chris looked up from the schedule. "It was from Hamlet." Beast Boy made and impressed face. A minuscule twinkle appeared in Raven's eye. "Beast Boy, come here," she called as he walked out. She summoned a knife nonchalantly as he walked back into the room. "What's up?" He walked over to her as a brief pain greeted his arm. He jumped back in shock as he noticed his arm was bleeding.

"Raven, what the hell are you doing?" he cried. "Just conducting a lesson," she replied, calmly. She looked back at Chris. "Have you ever healed anyone else before?" she asked. Chris shook his head. She grabbed his hand and put it next to the wound. "Concentrate on your objective," she said quietly. "Yeah, take your time. It's not like this hurts or anything," added Beast Boy.

Raven shot him a look before concentrating on helping Chris. His eyes were closed as he had his hand a few centimeters over Beast Boy's cut. Concentrate… He looked open one eye and saw the cut beginning to disappear. He was straining now. Beads of sweat were forming on his fore head. His face became red until he couldn't do it anymore. Chris fell back into his chair and was breathing deeply. Raven examined Beast Boy's arm. The wound was gone, but she would be able to help Chris to the point where healing wouldn't make him collapse.

"Can I go now?" asked Beast Boy indignantly. Raven nodded, not looking at him. Beast Boy walked out of the room, mumbling and looking at his arm. She leaned over to Chris. "Are you alright?" she asked. Chris nodded, still breathing heavily. "I've never felt so drained in my life." Raven looked into his eyes. "It will be straining for the first few tries, but it will become easier as you practice. I'm sure if you healed others as often as you healed yourself; I wouldn't have to help you in that aspect."

The next day, the real training began. Raven sat on her bed, flipping through the Book of Azar. Chris took in his surroundings. Very dark, he thought. If the window wasn't open, you wouldn't be able to tell it was morning. "Here it is," Raven said, breaking the silence. Chris looked up in slight surprise. "What?" he asked. She looked up from the book. "Energy conversion." She walked over to Chris and placed two fingers on his forehead. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos," she said quietly. As she spoke, the tips of her fingers started glowing and disappeared a few seconds later.

Chris sat in stunned silence. "I don't feel any different," he said. She shook her head. "You already possess the talent of healing. I simply gave you the ability to convert your gift to actual power. Only you can make it grow until it is as powerful as mine and you can heal people without collapsing. With your daily training, I can make it happen." Chris began examining his hands. "You mean I'll be able to do what you can do?" She nodded. "With practice. But you have to do exactly as I say, or it will take a long time. The more cooperative you are, the faster it will go."

Chris nodded as he thought about this. Telekinetic powers. He never thought it would be possible. He looked over at Raven. She was sitting on the floor in a cross-legged position, motioning Chris to sit next to her. As he sat down, she said, "First, you must meditate for an hour before training. It helps keep your concentration. For this spell to reach its full potential, you must clear head of all thoughts, except one. You must think of one memory that has made you the happiest you've ever felt in your life." Chris nodded as he closed his eyes and did what she said.

One thought… There were so many happy memories in his life. His first kiss. The birth of his brother, Andrew. His first lead role in a play. Finding out he would be a Teen Titan.

That was it.

He found out he would become a Teen Titan. It was then he realized he could make a difference and help people. He thought of this memory and this memory alone as he sat on the floor with Raven meditating.

After an hour or so, Raven got up and brought Chris to his feet. "Now, to get your powers to grow, you'll need to start small." She walked over to her dresser and pulled out some change. She placed the change on the floor a few feet in front of Chris. "I want you to concentrate on the coins on the floor. Make a pose with your arm like you want to grab for the coins and repeat after me. Azarath Metrion Zinthos." Chris nodded, closed his eyes, and opened them, looking down on the floor. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos," he said quietly. "Come on Chris! Mean it!" Raven shouted. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos," he repeated a little louder. "You're not concentrating!" You're not making this any easier on me, he thought. She said it would be tough, man. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos!" he shouted. A few of the pennies on the floor began to rise a few inches off the ground. Raven clapped her hands lightly. "Very good Chris. That is a good job for a first timer. I think tomorrow we'll try pens and pencils."

"She's really hung up on Chris, huh?" asked Cyborg. "I mean she's going as far as to teach him everything she knows." Beast Boy was playing the Game Station with Robin. "I think it's pretty awesome," Beast Boy responded. "With his talent and the power he will soon acquire, it will be wondrous to see how much stronger our team will become," said Starfire as she washed the dishes.

"What kind of stuff could he help us with?" asked Beast Boy. Cyborg shrugged. "Infiltration, I guess. Kind of like I did with the HIVE. But he'll be able to do it more often with his acting talents. Maybe bust a couple of heists."

A few days had passed. Chris was able to lift small things. Pencils and coins, mostly. Raven was starting to become slightly irritated. He should be able to lift things larger than this, she thought. When she saw him struggling to lift a book, she decided she had to speak up. "Chris, I don't think you're trying hard enough. It's been three days and you can only move pencils and pens." Chris stopped what he was doing and looked at her, sweat forming on his brow. "I'm trying as hard as I can," he said, a bit more loudly than he would have liked. "I can't give you any more than my best!"

Raven shot him a look. "We'll have to start over." She sat down on the floor and Chris reluctantly joined her. "Clear your head of all but that one memory." Chris sat and tried to do so. What a bitch, he thought. I'm not applying myself. She sounds like my English teacher. She's just trying to help you. She doesn't have to be so snippy. She said that this would be difficult and that she would require your cooperation. Well, she did say that. And she cares deeply for you. Yeah, I care deeply for her as well. Maybe even…

Eyes still closed, the thoughts and argument ran through Chris's head. I do love her, he thought. Wait a minute. Raven. That's the thought. Meeting Raven was the happiest I've ever felt in my life. Not becoming a Titan. Even if I became a Titan, it would mean nothing without having met Raven before. He cleared his head and focused just on this one thought.

"Survey says…"

"D'oh!"

"Tres… catorce…"

"You eediot!"

"…completely different."

Beast Boy flipped through the channels, bored out of his mind. Suddenly, the TV turned off. "What the hell…" he started, before he abruptly stopped. The TV started floating in the air. Eyes wide, he called for the nearest person. "Star?" he called. She came over. "Whatever is the matter, friend Beast Boy?" He pointed a shaking finger at the television. She looked over at it in confusion. "I am afraid I do not understand. Are you afraid of the purple dinosaur on the screen?"

"Yes… I mean no! What? The TV… it was floating! I swear!" Starfire felt his forehead. "Are you alright? Are you sure you are not suffering a disease?" "I'm fine! The television was floating!"

Starfire gave him a worried look as she floated off to the other room. "No… don't leave me here alone with this thing!" He turned around as the TV was floating again. He backed away slowly from the TV. The TV suddenly made a great lunge in his direction. Beast Boy screamed as he ducked. The television missed him and flew into the wall, shattering into tiny pieces.

Robin, Starfire, and Cyborg came into the room. "What the hell's all that noise?" asked Cyborg. Beast Boy pointed wildly at the smoking pile of electronic remains on the floor at the other side of the room. "It tried to attack me!" he said, shakily. Robin had a thoughtful expression. "I'll be right back," he said.

He knocked on Raven's door. "I'm busy," was the reply from inside the room. "Raven the TV out here shattered as it flew into a wall. I thought you might know something about it." There was a brief pause as Raven walked to her door leaving Chris on the floor, still meditating. She opened the door and tried to understand what Robin was talking about. "Okay, repeat that," she said. "Beast Boy said the TV flew of the table towards him. He ducked as it flew past him and hit a wall." Raven looked like this was hard to take in. "I've been meditating all afternoon. And when I wasn't, I was helping Chris learn to better his powers." Robin put two and two together. "Well if it wasn't you…" Raven cut him off. "No, not Chris. He can't even lift The Lord of the Rings let alone a television." "Are you sure?" asked Robin. Raven opened her mouth to speak, but no words came out. She was not sure. Robin walked away and Raven shut her door.

She stood in front of her door for a few moments before heading over to join Chris on the floor. "Chris, stop for a moment. I need to talk to you." Oh great, he thought. Another lecture on how I'm not applying myself. "Beast Boy was attacked by the television. It flew off the table and shattered into a wall." As she was talking, Chris's eyes widened and his cheeks reddened. "May I ask you something?" Chris looked up. "Sure, Raven. Anything." She looked into his eyes. "What was the memory you picked?"

Chris's right arm started quivering and a twitch developed near his eye. "Well, it was originally when I found out I was going to be a Titan. I'd be making a difference and helping people. But then I realized that even if that did happen, it would mean nothing to me if something else didn't happen." Raven looked confused. "I don't understand Chris. What are you talking about?" Chris reached for her hands and held them in his. "My thought was… it was… you." She was taken aback by his words. "You mean the happiest you've ever felt in your whole life was when you met me?" He nodded.

Chris felt he couldn't look at her. If he was, he'd notice tears welling up in her eyes. She reached for his face to turn it towards her. He looked at her face. Her eyes. Those beautiful, indigo eyes. She leaned forward as he did and their lips met. The first time since the accident in his car. This kiss may not have been as passionate, but it was more significant. Items from Raven's room started flying around them in circles as they enjoyed each other.

Chris had to go home to work for the next few days. He didn't stop his practicing. He was able to lift tables and desks now. All he had to do was concentrate on his goal and think about Raven. The next time he had a few days off from work, he'd drive down to Jump City to be with Raven and the rest of the Titans.

His powers growing, one thing remained for Chris: a name and costume. He drew up ideas and found one that worked.

He knocked on the Titans door. They opened up and were met with a great surprise. There, at the door, stood a teenager with a very short buzz cut, and a jazz unitard on. "Going for the drama military geek look, huh Chris?" asked Beast Boy. "Nope. I'm not Chris anymore. My name is Pretender."

A/N: This is the end of this story. If I get enough positive feedback, I might write a story with Chris helping the Titans.