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Chapter 11: I Tried to Say I Love You
Free from the dimension her father was imprisoned within, Raven now sat in the silence the Titan's Tower medical bay provided. Yet, it was rare unwelcome silences that Raven actually despised. Normally, she would use this rare occasion to meditate uninterrupted, but the dark Titan found that it was impossible to concentrate as she waited for the unconscious changeling to wake from his slumber.
There was a small part of her tat eagerly awaited to hear Beast Boy's voice once again. But for the most part, Raven feared what she had set in her mind to do. However, no matter the amount of fear in her heart, Raven knew that she could never back out. Beast Boy had endured too much, and he deserved to know why it had been him. And maybe, just maybe, he could find it in his heart to forgive her for putting him in that much danger and dragging him into the confrontation with her father that could have cost him his very life.
Raven sighed loudly as she shifted uncomfortably in her metal seat, wondering why the chairs in the medical bay could not have been just a little bit comfortable. She looked on enviously as beast Boy still slept peacefully after being brought back to the tower and laid on one of the two beds in the medical bay, and she cursed her mind for thinking that the spot next to her sleeping love looked the most comfortable. Such thoughts had been purposely placed in her mind by a certain lustful emotion that had until recently laid dormant. Yet, as her unvoiced feelings for Beast Boy grew, the power that lust had over her mind did as well. It took consistent meditation to keep Lust's thoughts out of her mind, but Raven could never block every thought all the time. Every once in a while, one slipped through.
Swiftly, Raven jerked her gaze away from Beast Boy's sleeping form and roughly pulled her hood up and over her head, trying desperately to conceal the newly forming blush that erupted across her cheeks after a fairly… specific comment from Lust. The lavender haired teen thoroughly scanned the room for anything that could take her mind off of the changeling and help get rid of the blush she secretly wore. Eventually, Raven's eyes focused on the Reaper and his injured sister.
Raven could only imagine the pain the young, alabaster haired girl must have experienced due to Trigon's constant torturing. The permanent scars on her feet and legs would be an eternal reminder of the evil she had seen and felt for three straight years. The thought of the young girl's sanity passed through Raven's mind. She had suffered much, more than any human should in a lifetime. Everyone could easily see the physical repercussions of the mistake the Reaper made three years ago, but the hidden, mental scars might never be seen, but they would always be there. Raven silently hoped that the girl would recover, but she also acknowledged the possibility that that would be impossible.
Raven glanced up at the Reaper, who sat in a similar position that she sat in, watching intently as his sister remained unconscious. She could see the worry in his eyes and sense the doubt forming in his heart. The love he had for his sister was obvious to anyone who saw his expression, and knowing that alone would make them want to do anything they could to help him. Raven was no different, but there was nothing that she could do at this point. When she had gotten back, she used her powers to heal the Reaper's sister as best as she could, but it was not much. The injuries were too severe for even her powers to mend. The other Titans bandaged the Reaper's sister, and tried to ease the pain her brother was experiencing. Yet, nothing done could help. All anyone could do at this point was wait.
Raven furrowed her brow in irritation as a familiar sensation spread over her leg. With her left hand, Raven reached down and tried to dig underneath her newly acquired cast with her fingers. It amazed her how a part of her body that had never itched before was now screaming to be scratched after being concealed by a cast. Needless to say, the fact that her fingers could not slip beneath the tight cast on her leg was driving her insane. She could feel her frustration rising, and she knew that if she did not do something now, many objects in the medical bay would break.
"I need some herbal tea," Raven shushed the sentence out of her mouth as she levitated herself out of the chair and floated out of the room. After the door slid closed, several loud sounds of glass shattering from out in the hallway could still be heard within the medical bay, and that in itself was enough to force Beast Boy's act to shatter entirely.
A small smile grew across the "sleeping" Beast Boy's face, but it quickly grew uncontrollably wider until he erupted into a fit of laughter. The changeling rolled to his side and curled up to try and stop his laughter before Raven or anyone else heard him and found him out. Unfortunately for beast Boy, he had no idea that the Reaper and his sister were in the same room as well.
"So," the Reaper spoke without looking up from his unconscious sister, "how long have you been awake, mate?" The British teens voice showed some interest, but beast Boy could tell that his main focus was still on his sister.
Beast Boy's eyes widened as the Reaper's voice reached his ears. Quickly, the changeling rolled over to face his once enemy directly. "I-I… er… have sort of been awake for the last few hours. I've just been lying completely still since then, and believe me, that is almost impossible for me to do."
"Why, though?" The Reaper asked somewhat annoyed at the green Titan. "You can't possibly have a good reason to make Raven worry needlessly like that? Mate, you're an idiot."
Beast Boy lowered his head. "Yeah," he said with shame. "I get that a lot. The thing is that I just couldn't face Raven yet. I-I'm afraid."
"What could you possibly be afraid of, mate? The way I see it, you are more than blessed."
For a while, there was only silence in the room. Beast Boy was deep in thought, a rarity for him. He knew what he wanted to do, but he was still afraid of the outcome. "I heard Trigon say that Raven loved me," Beast Boy spoke quickly in a barely audible whisper.
For the first time since the Reaper had teleported them from Trigon's hell dimension to the Titan's Tower medical bay, the Reaper removed his gaze from his sister and looked up at Beast Boy. "So, you are afraid to face Raven because you do not love her back?"
Beast Boy's eyes widened in confusion. "What? NO! That's not it at all."
"Then what is it, then?" The Reaper asked having a hard time repressing his annoyance toward the green changeling. "Because if you do love her, then what could possibly make you afraid of telling her that when you know she loves you back?"
"Dude, that information came from the mouth of Trigon, who last time I checked was evil. Saying anything he could to get under Raven's skin probably is not beneath him. He probably just said that because he knows that isn't how Raven feels about me, and it would make her mad to hear anyone even suggest that." Beast Boy's expression saddened and his gaze fell to the floor. "Listen, the truth is that I truly love Raven. I always have. That's why all of my jokes are to try to get her to smile. I couldn't care less if everyone thinks that they're funny or not. I just want to make her happy."
The Reaper stared at Beast Boy blankly. He could not believe that these idiots that called themselves Titans ever got anything done when they second guessed themselves so much. He knew how Raven had always held her feeling for the changeling standing before him at bay out of fear that he would never feel the same thing for a half demon as she did about him. Now, it turns out that the very object of her affections has gone through the same thing longer than she had.
'Idiots,' the Reaper scoffed in his head. 'It's like living in a freaking soap opera. Thank God I am leaving as soon as Julia wakes up.' Deciding to ignore Beast Boy stupidity for the time being, and he once again returned his gaze to his sleeping sister. 'Get well soon, Julia. It's been too long since I've heard your voice, or your laugh. I miss you so much. I promise that I will never make the same mistake ever again. I'm done with my powers. All I want to do is make sure we live a good life from now on demon free. I promise.'
Beast Boy had long ago noticed that the Reaper had stopped paying attention to him and had returned to worrying about his sister's safety, or he was at least thinking something about his sister. However, Beast Boy's mind did not stay on the Reaper for long. Like it usually did, it wandered back to Raven. He thought about her a lot, and he constantly joked around with himself that the only reason Cyborg ever beat him at video games was that he was thinking about Raven and not the game. It may sound like an excuse, but it was true.
Beast Boy rolled over and onto his back, still deep in thought. Even though everything was over, there was still much that troubled him, although he would never allow his fears to be known by his friends. He preferred to keep them to himself other than the brief comical expressions of fear he throws into his act every now and then. Those were not usually real, but what he was feeling now bothered him. He had a lot of questions, and he mentally hoped that he could find his nerves in time to talk to Raven.
Without warning, the door to the tower's medical bay swished open to reveal a silent, yet still quite annoyed Raven floating in the doorway. Her eyes glowed white as she concentrated on a small fork she was controlling to try and dig beneath her cast. Unfortunately for her, fate seemed to feed on her frustration and laugh at her despair. Annoyed immensely, Raven gave up and used her powers to throw the useless fork back into the hall and diverted her attention into the medical bay where she was met with a surprise.
Alerted by Raven's rather noisy entry, Beast Boy had forgotten about his rouse and sat straight up to meet Raven face to face. As soon as his eyes met Raven's however, the familiar feeling of fear swept throughout his body once again, and he instantly regretted not faking sleep like he had before. In his heart, he knew that he had to tell Raven how he felt eventually, and he pleaded for some sign that Trigon had not been lying after all. He could only hope.
A small smile crept over Raven's lips as her eyes met Beast Boy's emerald ones. It was not a very big smile like Beast Boy's normal toothy grin, but for Raven it was extravagant. It seemed like she had waited forever for any sign that his constant transformations into the Beast had not taken a permanent toll on the changeling, and now that sign had come, and in the best way possible too.
With that same smile still seemingly glued to her lips, Raven floated back to her chair next to the medical bed Beast Boy had slept on. With Beast Boy on her mind, the itch that plagued her foot seemingly disappeared completely. Slowly, Raven lowed herself into the unimaginably uncomfortably, metal chair next to Beast Boy, never letting her eyes leave his.
It seemed that Beast Boy's eyes were permanently locked on Raven's. Her beautiful eyes had trapped him now, and there was no escape, not that he as trying very hard to break free. As much as he thought Raven did not like him and that she would probably kill him for thinking of her the way he did, he had to admit that it would all completely worth it just to keep his eyes on Raven's just for a little longer. Just a few more seconds of silence and he would turn away… maybe.
Curious about the sudden silence, the Reaper looked up from his sister and at the two entranced Titans. A feeling of pure disgust filled his entire being as he marveled at how obvious the two teens were, yet they still both managed to hold some doubt of the other's feelings toward them. He could hardly believe that everything was happening in front of him, and that they still had not realized the love the other held for them. It was sickening to say the least.
The Reaper coughed loudly to try and get a rise out of the two love struck teens, but neither Beast Boy nor Raven awoke from their trance. The British teen's brow furrowed, and his disgust grew immensely. Giving up, the Reaper sighed rather loudly and stood up. "Yeah, I'm sure you two have a lot to talk about, so I'm just going to go… somewhere else." There was still no reaction from Beast Boy or Raven, so the Reaper leaned his sickle against the wall and turned to walk out of the room. Stopping at the doorway, the reaper turned to take one last look at the love birds. "You two are disgusting." With that, he exited the room and the door silently slid closed.
The Reaper's presence was long since forgotten to the two Titans left in the medical bay, and none of his words reached them in any way. They were too entranced by the other before them to care about anything happening around them. Eventually, however, Raven came to her senses and realized just how long they had been looking at each other in silence. The pale goddess's cheeks dawned a shade of crimson, and she mentally thanked whatever higher power that existed that she had pulled her hood over her face earlier.
"Hey," Raven whispered, deciding to fight through her blush and try to get through what she knew she had to do.
The sound of Raven's voice instantly knocked Beast Boy's mind back to reality, and he quickly looked away from raven hoping that she would not notice the blush forming on his face. Yet, slowly his body drew his gaze back to Raven, and Beast Boy had no choice but to give in to what he had no power to stop. His eyes locked with Raven's again, and a small smile spread across his lips. "Hey," Beast Boy answered softly.
Raven raised an eyebrow from underneath her hood as she noticed the very distinct blush across the changeling's emerald face, and her mind began to race at what the possibilities of its meaning were. True to her name, Lust had some very lewd explanations. Love, however, was calm and hopeful as she suggested what she thought that it meant. In her heart, Raven hoped that Love was right. "Beast Boy," Raven said as calm as she could manage, "why are you blushing like that?"
The emerald changeling's eyes shot wide open as the realization hit him that he had been found out, and he once again looked away while laughing nervously. "Oh," beast Boy said while rubbing the back of his neck, "I-I was blushing. I must have… er… Raven, can I ask you some questions?"
Raven smirked underneath her hood at the very obvious attempt to get out of his explanation, and a warm feeling of hope filled her senses. "Sure, but don't think you are free from my question, though. You still owe me an explanation."
"Yeah," Beast Boy laughed even more nervously as his eyes now locked on the floor, "I know. Anyway, um… could you kind of explain to me what all just happened? I'm so confused. I mean first, that Reaper dude is trying to kill us, then I think I die or something, then I wake up and it looks like I am trying to kill you which made no sense, and then we're fighting your father and the Reaper is on our side. That's a lot to take in when I assume I missed a lot in between. I thought that Trigon wanted you, but he was in my body. Why?"
Raven sighed. She knew what she had to do, and no amount of hope could calm the fear in her heart. Yet, she forced herself past the fear, and she began her explanation. "Well, first off, you never died. You came as close as you can without dieing, but you never crossed that line. The Reaper merely ripped your soul out of your body in an attempt to fore me to loose control completely. When we fought the Reaper, I told you that it was because you were my friend. That… that wasn't entirely true. The thing is that out of everyone in the tower, I… I care about you the most."
There. It was done. She said it without saying it. T was the closest that she could bring herself to revealing everything she felt for the changeling, and she hoped that Beast Boy would be able to put the rest together himself. However, when she looked up at beast Boy with hopeful eyes, all she got in return was a blank stare, not any caring words or a warm grin, just nothing. Either beast Boy did not get it, or he was freaked out that a demon like her could like him. A tear formed in raven's eye as she thought of the latter, and she fought desperately to repress her feelings s that she would not look like any more of a fool in Beast Boy's eyes.
"Anyway," Raven continued while trying to hide her grief, "your soul was taken, but I wouldn't let myself lo-"
"Wait," Beast Boy interrupted with a shaky voice. "Just please wait." Raven did as Beast Boy asked, but she did so fearing the rejection that she was now convinced that would come. Beast Boy's mind, however, was running in circles trying to comprehend the meaning in raven's words. 'I care about you the most,' ran in his head over and over unstopping, but with every new time came one more ounce of hope for what he once thought only a dream could bring.
"Raven," beast Boy said still with a shaky voice, "I just have one more question. I don't really care what happened after that anymore, but this is really important. What you said has got my mind spinning, and as I usually do, I have probably have blown that last sentence way out of proportions. I don't know exactly how you meant it, but I-I can only hope that for once, my mind is right."
Raven slowly lifted her eyes off the floor and once again looked at the changeling lying on the bed in front of her. Hope had surfaced in her heart once again.
"You see raven," Beast Boy continued hesitantly, "I kind of… sort of… like you... a lot." Beast Boy swore that he noticed Raven's expression change underneath her hood, but he could not tell if it was good or bad. Ultimately, he knew that he had come too far to stop now. He had to finish, even if it… Raven killed him for it. He no longer cared. "I-It's become more than that, though. I-I mean that I really… really… er…That is to say that I truly and sincerely l-lo-" Beast Boy felt a hand on his halting his confession, and he immediately looked up to see Raven with her hood now down and with eyes shimmering with what Beast Boy could only describe as sheer joy.
"Come on," Raven as she pulled beast Boy off of the medical bed and floated the both off of the ground. "We're going out."
"W-Wait!" Beast Boy said confused. "Don't you want to hear the rest of what I had to say?"
"Well, you looked like you were having trouble, and I can guess where you were headed, so I'll just act like you said it until you can."
Beast Boy raised an eyebrow and smiled. "Does this mean you feel the same way?"
"Maybe. I'll let you know when you can finally finish what you were saying." With that, the dark teen opened a portal leading to the city and drug Beast Boy through.
Deep in the recesses of the hell dimension in which Trigon was once imprisoned, all was calm for the first time. Every trace of Trigon or his many minions that he created were gone, or so one would think. In the middle of the sea of magma, the large, red arm of demon broke through the surface of the liquid fire.
Hey. After many setbacks, I am finally done. Woo. And, I get to promise you a sequel to this... eventually.