Disclaimer TEEN TITANS and all other related characters and material are the property of DC comics and Cartoon Network, I claim no ownership.

Chapter 34: Dances part 3

By: Ansa

"Hey you, have you seen the spread they got over there? Not bad concidering they have no money." Jynx plopped herself down next to Cyborg on the small reception table on the edge of the dance floor, talking with half a cocktail shrimp in her mouth and a second on deck in hand. Cyborg had been sitting there watching for quite some time now, running the events of the day over and over through his head while guests continued to step up to dance with the bride and groom for $1, as per tradition. Occasionally he would laugh to himself at Raven's awkwardness towards such a thing. Although she was perfectly comfortable dancing with her new husband, other people were another story. "Hey, are you listening? They have shrimp and those little cocktail weenies, no tofu or anything…at least I hope these aren't tofu. Do they even make tofu shrimp?"

"Hmmm? Tofu shrimp?"

"What's wrong with you? You've been out of it for a while now." Jynx swallowed the last bit of seafood in her mouth and cautiously set down the one in her hand next to her, still not sure about the existence of tofu shrimp. However, given their current situation with his teammates, more pressing matters were at hand, especially if someone had happened to figure things out. A cold chill ran down her spine at just the thought of it. Despite her forward and strong personality, she really wasn't sure what she would do if they were found out. On the one hand she wasn't the kind of person to just stand around if something like that were to happen. She was a criminal, and with no more leverage within the Titans, chances are she would be going away for some time now. Then again, this time it wasn't just her life on the line it was his as well, and despite everything she was taught by the hands of her former teacher Brother Blood, she found herself having the weaknesses of the pure of heart. If things have turned sour, she could not just leave him to take the heat on his own. As much as her gut told her to ditch and run as far as possible…she knew that she would never be able to.

Cyborg looked at her, his mind heavy with worry. Looking into her eyes he could see the rare sight of genuine concern, just subtle enough that anyone other than he could easily overlook it. Amongst the many things going through his mind right now the most pressing was those three words yet to be said to her, three short, sweet words that took very little to say, but meant so much. It took him this long to tell her, he owed it to her to tell her, but during such a rocky moment in their lives with both their fates yet to be decided. He wanted to tell her…every part of him was urging him on, if only to put ease on her own mind, but he knew…if he was to tell her, it was because it was the right moment. Not for any other reason other than that he wanted to. No other reason other than to let her know just how much she meant to him, just how much they chaos she has brought into his life has also made it make more sense then ever before. That having known her, having loved her…he could now consider himself a man.

"…Nah, I'm fine. Just can't believe they're really hitched you know?" In such a critical moment, sometimes hiding the truth can be the only thing one can do to protect the ones they love from worry, and at this moment, his deception lifted her spirit and made her smile return to him. For now, he would keep her in the dark. Nothing was certain so far, and so there was no reason to have her worry over a possibility.

"Well, I don't really know them that well but I think she could have done so much better." Jynx smiled wickedly, knowing quite well that Beast Boy had been dancing in the general vicinity, speaking just loud enough for him to hear and sticking her tongue out at him playfully when he glared at her. "Now come on, you haven't asked me to dance all night." Standing up Jynx tugged hard on Cyborgs arm purely to suade him, knowing full well her strength alone could not pull him up out of his chair. In her mind she probably knew that he was deceiving her, but if she did she really didn't care. If they did only have tonight before the shit hit the fan, she was at least going to enjoy it.

"Ok, ok."

"What are you afraid to ask me or something?" Jynx smiled to herself as she dragged him out to the dance floor, the sound of guitars filled the room as the new song started to spin from the DJ. Although it soon became clear said song was not something usually played at a wedding, most likely a request from one of the guests, a modern rock, pop…something song that she was quite sure she had heard on the radio, she was not about to give up her dance.

"No…not afraid."

"Oh, ashamed of me then?" She did enjoy teasing him, even if he did know that she wasn't serious, she loved to see him all flustered. To her, it was the most adorable part about him and if something was bothering him, at least this would get his mind of things, if only for a minute or two.

"Oh come on now, you know that's not it."

"Uh-huh…I know the truth."

"Looks like I'm next," Raven turned her head from Aqualad, her last dance partner, to see Dick with a warm smile on his face and a crisp twenty dollar bill standing up straight within his fingers. "I know tradition is usually only one dollar but I know you're worth it." She smiled at him, not because of his generosity, not even because he continued to be the closest thing to a real father she would ever have, but because the smile on his face. That smile, the warm genuine smile she had not seen in years now, not since the days where he and Starfire fought side by side together wish she, her new husband and Cyborg. Not since the days when everything was as sweet and happy as a children's storybook. That is, if a children's book had monsters, demons, and bank-robbers.

Looking over at her husband she noticed Starfire was next in line, also with more then just a dollar to offer for the dance. It wasn't a twenty of course, she wasn't rich like Dick was, nor was she better off then herself and Beast Boy. Working weekdays at the college library, giving what she could for rent and food compensation only allowed her to offer $8. As much as she wanted to toss in an extra two to make an even $10, this was all that she had to give…and it was much appreciated.

Raven smiled back once again into the man Dick had become, the man that gave her way in place of her father at her wedding not too long ago this day. If it weren't for tradition she would have easily refused the money, but that is not to say that Dick would let her either. Taking the bill from his fingers she stuffed it into her left glove with the others, altogether making a decent amount to bring as spending cash on their honeymoon, not including the money her husband had within his pockets. This of course was not what was occupying her mind right now, to her it was just another slip of paper to add to dozens of others within her glove. Right now, money was nothing to her, only the man who presented it. Had she seen him less of a father she might have loved him, but then again, would he have been willing to teach her how to love just as her husband had?

Smiling once again she shook the thought from her mind, no. She could never have seen him as anything but a father, a true father. Everything that she never had, everything she needed from a strong man who's only wishes was to see her become the woman she deserved to be, the kind of woman that enriches the world with her existence, the kind of woman...to love and marry. In this case there were two men as such in her life, one a father, the other a lover.

Within moments the music started once again and already a giddy Starfire began to share a dance with the groom despite the solemn tone of the guitar and vocals of this particular song. Taking Dick's hand the two took the more formal position, his arm on her hip, hers on his. Dick was a much more experienced dancer than he had anticipated, especially after seeing the stiff, child-like dance he shared with Star. Still, she couldn't help but be amused at just how carefully his hand hovered upon her hip, softly, almost afraid to touch her. This she greatly appreciated, having become quite uncomfortable with the number of people being so close to her. Things were shifting to a more comfortable feeling now. As much as she enjoyed having so many friends wish to dance with her, it was nice to be with someone she was comfortable with.

"So when are we going to hook up?"

"Excuse me?" Susan turned her head flashing the most surprised and shocked expression upon her face that Derek had ever seen on her in quite some time. He did his best to force back a smile pushed forward by uncontrollable laughter at his own prank. It was hard, but he managed.

"Well, Gar and Soma are getting hitched, Dick and...Starfire, yeah, Dick and Starfire seem to be getting along well, and um…those two over there, I forgot their names. So, why not us?"

"Ha, you're kidding me right?"

"Why not?"

"Well…" Susan paused for a moment, struggling to make her argument. However, truth be told she never really thought about it before. She had known Derek for quite some time now, even back when he was dating Kristen. As for her, she never really had a steady boyfriend, all of the guys she seemed to make attempts with never wanted to go the distance…the distance being past the morning after. It's not like she didn't like him, in fact, now that she thought about it he was rather cute, if not immature at times, but of course when it came to that she didn't have much reason to talk herself.

"I guess you're right…"

"Huh?"

"You're right; there is no reason why we couldn't give it a try."

Derek froze in place, staring forward with eyes wide and as white as an Alaskan blizzard. What would he do when his prank backfired in such a way as this? He honestly didn't think she would ever go for it. He was expecting the classic blushed stutter, instead, he was faced with a friend he had known for what seemed like forever wanting to give dating a try, which in itself could backfire horribly, and leave their friendship in ruins.

"Wow, um. I guess we could, but…"

"I know, the whole friendship thing right?"

"Yeah."

"We'll just take things slow, and if you end up breaking my heart, I'll just kill you. That way friendship won't be an issue."

"Ha ha."

Ok, an tiny update for you. I usually try to make chapters at least 8 pages long on word but I've been having the hardest time with this lately. Hopefully with part two winding down things will get easier with time. A few things…1. Suggested listening: 36crazyfists "Bitterness the Star" 2. I've FINALLY started working on my first original piece of writing. This being a rather large project, a three book (so far) series known only as the project name, XENON. As of right now I have about 4 chapters and roughly 70-80 pages ( major editing required will most likely shorten this.) Thanks to those who kept pushing me to do so, I finally got my fat ass to work on it. I am thinking about doing a preview, as for how exactly I do that I'm not sure. If you want more info my AIM is wannabeaninja185 thank you Later Days!

ANSA