Thanks to all who have read this story. I've had a blast writing it. Now that I've probably been sentimental enough, on to shamelessly promoting my next story. Rookie is the title, and it should be hitting fan-fiction tomorrow-ish. This is a different setting than the current story, because I really don't want to have to create all new explanations for where various characters ended up. Cyborg's the main character, because there are so few fan-fiction stories for the guy. All Raven fans, don't worry- she's there, she's involved, and she's a lawyer. Rookie. Now that I have a few author's-note skippers attentions, have a great summer (or winter, if you're in Australia).
Beast Boy stepped from Nevermore into a very bright apartment. Disoriented by the sudden rush of light, he stumbled, tripped over a white chest, and fell onto a thick area rug. He didn't know that he followed the exact path the Boy Wonder had taken earlier until he felt a bird-a-rang poking into his arm. The sudden presence of a feline on his back was not expected.
Raven waited after she closed the portal. The cat always knew. She smiled when the tabby licked the back of his neck in the most ticklish spot possible. The cat approved- Raven was now more than one hundred percent sure of her choice. "Gar, meet Corrie. Corrie is long for Cor. Cor is short for Corvidae, because she's the only family I've ever kept around for a while that hasn't tried to exploit me."
Corrie liked him. When he became a cat, she was the most ecstatic Raven had ever seen the creature. She didn't even try her usual ways of discouraging tom-cats. Instead, she meowed out an entire conversation, asking for a summary of what was going on. Raven was pretty smart, for a human, but she couldn't speak Cat to save her life. After a prompt from Raven, he asked why Corrie disliked Robin so much. The cat had only began to delicately lick a paw, a cat's shrug. After a moment, waiting sure he was truly interested in the answer, she gave a quick response. Her only answer? He's fun to bug.
By the time Raven and Beast Boy were ready to head to the Tower, Starfire, Cyborg, and Robin had already left. They (meaning Cyborg and Robin) had decided that a race was needed, T-Car against R-Cycle. Starfire was, by default, the referee. She was not pleased with the plan, but her presence would (probably) keep the bickering at a minimum. Raven saw them depart, and knew she would have to make it up to Starfire. Someday. For today, Starfire could deal with the boasting fragility of the male ego.
Raven and Beast Boy flew back on their own, just behind the race. Raven struck poses as Superman, and did a surprisingly good imitation of a hapless Supergirl, the only person affiliated with the Superman franchise (Superman, Superboy, etc.) to not wear tights. Raven had no issue with tights. She had no issue with not wearing them. She found something odd in wearing a very short red cheerleading skirt to fly in. Gar wisely refrained from commenting, but pteranydons are not known for their conversational skills.
He was also a green red-tailed hawk, alternating to pteranydon to match wind condition. Hawks were not at all suited to flying straight distances. He was a hawk when Raven waved cheerfully (if not for the vision of the bird, he would have doubted the spectacle and still could barely believe it) to a passing news helicopter, not even caring her return would merit a byline on the front page of the newspaper, if not a headline. People could pay attention to her. She always had been politely ignored before. She wasn't leery of the spotlight any longer.
They arrived at the Tower just as Starfire ended what sounded like a long-winded argument. Cyborg activating a rocket booster using internal programming just as they reached the final part of the race was technically not cheating, and yelling "Booyah!" did not in any way count as harassment.
Raven knew that everyone wanted to ask her something, but there was no time to go through her entire saga. Besides, reunions were supposed to be fun. "Each of you gets one question," she announced as she unwrapped a sleeping Corrie from her cloak. Not even Beast Boy had noticed Raven's passenger.
"Why did you bring the devil-spawn?" Robin asked instantly.
"Corrie is not devil-spawn. The devil isn't nearly as clever. Corrie's not getting left alone in an apartment with a busted door. Thank your problem-solving techniques."
"Why is your magic purple?" Starfire wanted to know.
"I know, but I can't explain exactly why I do, that my father's influence is finally gone. Rage is closer to another emotion than she is to my father, which is why it's good that Rude and Rage get along. Emotions aren't a risk any longer, and I can control telepathy. Before, the emotions I felt were too strong for me to channel."
"Are you two officially together?"
"I just have a simple question, Rae." Gar invoked his permission to use the shortened name, still barely believing that he was dating Raven. This was something he had never thought would happen.
"If we had a kid, what color eyes would it have?"
Raven gave him a skeptical look that would have made Cyborg doubt electronics, Robin doubt Slade's existence, and Starfire doubt the soothing properties of Tamaranean food. As it was, Beast Boy doubted he would be alive much longer. "You're thinking nine months after a certain event. You should be working on getting to that event first." She didn't leave the Common Room, as she would have done just over five years ago. Instead, she watched him blush and laughed. Comfortable for possibly the first time in the Tower, she unlocked the magical blocks on her room.
A familiar alarm shrilled, interrupting them. Current conversations were put on hold; as always, they would resume at that exact point when the criminal was dealt with. Instead, they raced to the scene of the crime, downtown Jump City.
Robin looked around at his friends while they hovered or stood around him. "We're all Titans. On three. One. . . two. . ."
"Titans, GO!" they yelled as one. Starfire took to the air, shooting starbolts with much-improved aim. Cyborg's new sonic cannon went to work. Robin used a few gadgets made popular by Nightwing in addition to his usual martial arts and bird-a-rangs. Raven covered everyone's back while shooting offensive blasts of energy, sustaining force fields without a sweat.
Beast Boy took the forward position without a fight. Adonis was a villain he took personally. Cyborg had Atlas, Starfire had Blackfire, Robin had Slade, and Raven had defeated Malchior. Today, he had a good feeling about the battle.
"Adonis. You know, you really have a way with namesakes."
"Says who? Better than 'Beast Boy.'"
"Really? Adonis was a pretty-boy that ending up sleeping in a cave under surveillance for all eternity. That was the original, at least. You'll end up in a jail cell."
Adonis snarled. Beast Boy wasn't impressed. He had been more threatening as a kitten, a very long story for a short incident involving Starfire's short-lived hobby of knitting, Robin trying to impress her, and Beast Boy trying to win Raven over. Needless to say, it didn't go as planned for any party involved. In the garage, Cyborg was granted default amnesty.
"Well, the original Adonis can-" There, the villain made a suggestion that was physically, anatomically, historically, and in all other ways impossible. "I'm through robbing the bank. There's no evidence on me, and none of you saw a thing. The only way I'll be arrested, until you have a warrant, is if I turn myself in or lose to you in a fight. What do you have? An alien chick, the uptight, the metalman, and the Goth are backing up a chunk of mold. There's a real fight."
"The 'alien' belongs more than you ever will. The 'uptight' is still much more fun than you will ever be. The 'metalman' is a better person than you could ever hope to become. And the 'Goth' is my girlfriend." He couldn't describe how good it felt to say that. "But I'll take you by myself."
Robin protested, backed by Cyborg and Starfire. Beast Boy, in their experience, was far from the best fighter. Raven cleared her throat, looking at him intently until he nodded. She pulled back, satisfied that he could handle it. Cyborg, Starfire, and Robin followed.
"What is going on?" Robin asked, echoed by Starfire and Cyborg.
"Don't take your eyes from spinach-skin. He took down Malchior, remember? He'll be fine."
"You can't beat me," Adonis jeered. "Remember that chemical? It spilled again. I'm stronger than last time, you know." Before their eyes, Adonis again transformed to a Beast stronger than a gorilla and quicker than a dinosaur.
Beast Boy only smiled. "So am I. I'll give you one last chance to give up. I'm in a good mood today." There was no response except a growl, as predicted. "Don't say I didn't warn you."
There really was no battle worthy of being recorded. The Beast instantly retreated, leaving a villain muttering wide-eyed about the unlikelihood of a dragon's resistance. The large words were ignored, and attributed to the perpetrator's manic catatonic state, newly invented by a panicked criminal unused to a dragon. The youngest of the Teen Titans had a new battle strategy that worked surprisingly well. The other four were proud, but rolled their eyes when the (huge!) dragon wasn't looking. He'd be bragging about this for years.
A dragon deposited a frozen-with-fear criminal at the police station five doors down. He was trailed by an indifferent Raven and three incredulous Titans, who pounced the instant he was human, wanting details. "Questions later," he promised. "We're late enough for the official reunion as it is, even if this battle was a sort of reunion. Besides, I want to go home, and I think you all feel the same."
Raven took his hand mock-possessively. "I do."
"You may now kiss the girlfriend," Cyborg intoned. "Girlfriends! You may now kiss the girlfriends," he amended after death glares from Starfire and Robin. Cyborg felt left out until Bumblebee arrived a few minutes later, a few days ahead of schedule. Then, he was a part of the Titans' new recreational activity.
The Titans were together again (for a week, at least), for richer or poorer (well, they're all more than rich enough), in good times and in bad (they'd already covered those), in sickness and in health (there had been more than enough heart-sickness going on to make angst-addicts happy), 'til death do them part (but that better not happen for a long while- they're in their twenties, for crying out loud, and unless people really like angsty-punishment fics about drunk drivers, they're going to live for a long time and survive through many more adventures). Death was likely to remain a small smudge on the horizon for quite a while.
The Titans were together again, and nothing as pitiful as Death would tear them apart (really, if needed, Raven could give the Death Angel a run for his money, but that's a story I doubt I'll ever write, because she's not dead). And so, with much dragging on by the author (who hates to write the last words and hopes her side notes have been somewhat humorous), December comes to an end, bringing an entirely new dilemma to Titans' Tower. Exactly what do you get for an alien, workaholic, half-robot, vegan, or ex-Goth for Christmas? No one ever said being a Titan was easy. They just said it was worth it.
The official (and only) up-to-date (sort of) poll results- Five for green, four for violet eyes, one for bi-color eyes (one violet, one green, with a blue chakra), one for a sort of a mix (teal/turquoise), four for violet-rimmed emerald, and one for other (hazel) on a potential child. The question, for those who missed it, was: If BB and Rae had a kid, what color eyes would s/he have?
To All Readers: This will clear up a few major questions. Yes, there will be a sequel. Eventually. Don't hold your breath or you'll miss it, because you'll either be dead or beating the world record currently in Guinness. The next story will be about Teen Titans, will have Cyborg, Rae & BB, and Star & Rob. Rookie. There you go- almost all queries answered right here in a form letter. I answered them anyway- overexposure isn't a bad thing, right?
Jim Starluck- I know two in one thousand people will catch that. About two in one hundred can equate There and Back Again with The Hobbit. If I mentioned, specifically, that Smaug was the dragon Bilbo took the mithril coat from that saved Frodo's life, one in ten might get it. Still, I put out references for the few special enough to read and comprehend Tolkien. It amuses me.
Kit Darkwood- I'm glad you think so. Clichéd lines are very annoying- to me, at least. There are about four lines that people use over. . . and over. . . and- you get the idea. Besides, they aren't the typical couple, so I don't want to give them the typical lines.
XPhoenixX- Have you ever read about Amazons? She sent him to a fate much better than death- for men, at least. Weak women were not liked, but tolerated. Weak (or strong, for that matter) men were slaves. To warrior women not at all likely to be tricked. Besides, she isn't the murdering type, and this gives a very good encouragement to guys around her to play nice. Amazons rock.
They-Call-Me-Orange- The writing for the last chapter was a bit. . . off, but I was having huge writer's block and it was the best that I could get. There is a chance of a sequel. Eventually. But, before then, I have about four stories I need to type up, let alone write.
BeastWithin- Keep keeping the faith. Everybody should. BB and Rae are meant for each other. Rob-Rae fans are just delusional. They must be Republicans. (Well, there goes half the American audience. Whatever- I'm an Independent.)
Falling- Yes, the story's almost over. There might be a sequel. Maybe. But, to tide you over until then, read about Cyborg. I like the guy, and he needs a fanfic for him (with BB and Rae, of course).
The Last- The hardest exams are over, and summer is here. This means, around the many required reading books, books I want to read, family trips, camping, and having a social life, I'll have plenty of time to write. Hopefully. I never liked Rorek, anyway. He was a bit too convenient.
Celsie- Vote noted. I thought that she'd need some oddity in her emotions. Loving someone is a little like giving part of yourself away and getting something in return, and how can you go wrong with rainbow skin? This story's finished, but I'm still writing.
pureangel86- It's happy. I'm starting a new one with plenty of BB-Rae in the background, just because the two of them are adorable. Besides, the best friend (and the good-friend/best-friend's-girlfriend) have to be in there.
teenRAVENtitan- The last chapter's delay was more writer's block than anything else. I like this chapter more. Besides, the cat finally is named, and I love that animal. Sometimes, it's disappointing to not meet a few characters from a story.
Nya the koneko- I'll take any ideas, but I think I have the needed details for a sequel (later, not in the immediate future) down. For now, people can just wait for background BB-Rae.
Bob42- I can say I've never been compared to a real author like Rowling before. I really admire her work- thanks for the comparison. There's more where this came from- again, see the selfless promotion at the top.
FirefliesWish- Enough people voted to make green the winner- so far. Other people might vote after this chapter. There will be a sequel- eventually.
D- You are indeed one of the elite Reviewing Faithful. Show up next story, too. I like that one. Besides, I've always wanted to write about cops. I have enough information to make it somewhat convincing.
KTHunter- Thanks. It means a lot to me, that people review this.
Yume Takato- I know what you meant. I'm just saying- I could, but it wouldn't be nearly as much fun I'll look into the song. Music is good.
To all readers/reviewers/people to listen to me rant/people ignored while I scribbled in my notebook (trust me- my handwriting is that bad)/my poor darling brotherwho can't play video games while I write/my father for pretending he had some clue what I was saying/and to my poodle for pretending that I'm sane- Thanks. I couldn't have done it without you.