Always Been You
Chapter 7: Nothings Going to Stop Us Now
Disclaimer: same as the last chapters.
June came much too fast for everyone. Graduation was in less than 2 weeks. The senior class had mixed feelings: excitement and sadness. Most would have the summer together before everyone separated for college.
Since their senior trip two weeks ago, Raven had been borderline depressed. She'd receive phone calls from Tim nightly and they'd talk for hours. But the next day, he'd walk by with Star on his arm. She was sick of it. She didn't want to be the other girl anymore. She wanted to be the only.
So after classes one day, a week and a half before school would end, Raven text messaged Tim's cell phone. 'Meet me in the AV room ASAP.' She received one back almost instantly: 'Be there 5 mins.'
So she waited. Jen had been urging her to do this for months now. Raven didn't want it to be this way. She wanted Tim to make this decision on his own without her prompting him to. It was simple: the ultimatum, her or Star.
Tim showed up exactly five minutes after she had read her message. His look was that of concern. "Raven, are you ok?"
Raven struggled to keep her emotions under control. And at the moment, she didn't dare say anything for fear of breaking down. So she shook her head.
"Looking in your eyes I see a paradise
this world that I've found
is too good to be true"
Tim closed the gap between the two of them, hugging her tightly, gently kissing her head through her hair. Moments later she pushed him away.
"I can't do this anymore, Robin. I can't be your friend and watch you be with her. So you need to decide: stay with Kori or be with me. I'm sorry but I can't just be friends with you. I want to be with you too bad." She said quietly, tears welling up in her eyes.
Tim stared at her in slight surprise. So much of this wasn't Raven. He was waiting for the dream to end. Raven didn't cry. She didn't apologize for what she knew wasn't her fault. When his dream never ended, Tim knew what he had to do. He turned and walked out.
"Like I've been telling you all along," Raven said sadly into the phone. "He chose to stay with Kori."
"I just don't believe it. I don't understand." Came Jen's bewildered voice. "All year long he's been stringing you along. You broke it down just like we all expected needed to be done and he still chose her!?"
"Standing here beside you
Want so much to give you
this love in my heart that I'm feeling for you"
Hearing someone else confirm it brought fresh tears to her eyes. "Yes. I was right Jen. You were wrong. Everyone was wrong."
"No, no. Rae, I'm coming over."
The line went dead in Raven's hand. This just couldn't be happening to her. Tim should be with her. They all knew it. They always knew they'd be together no matter what happened. They would always work it out. Ever since their first fight, they were just meant to be together.
"Why would you even do that?"
"What? You think I was wrong?" Robin asked.
"Yes. Yes, I do." Raven said with arms crossed.
"Why? I had every right to be mad. He destroyed my room!"
"That doesn't give you the right to be hurtful. He was upset."
"Se he can destroy his own room. Rae, some on. Gimme a break." Robin reached out to take her hand.
Raven pulled back with fierce eyes. "No. Don't touch me. He's our friend and instead of trying to comfort him when he's upset you make him feel worse. You're a jerk." She turned to storm off.
"Aaahhh…" Robin moaned leaning his head back before taking off after her. "Raven." He whined. "I'm sorry."
"Don't apologize to me. You didn't hurt me."
"What do you want me to do? I'll say sorry to him. Ok?! Now what about you? How can I make it up to you?"
"Be a better friend. Then I'll forgive you."
"I will. I promise. But I need you now too."
Raven shook her head and continued her escape across the school playground. It was a warm Saturday afternoon and many of the neighborhood kids were all gathered around the only decent place to play. Raven could see her group of friends waiting for her by the jungle gym. And close by was Robin's group was close by, as always. They were at the age where boys had cooties but the groups had so much fun together that they couldn't keep completely away.
Raven stormed away as Robin begged and pleaded with her for forgiveness. Raven was by far his favorite person, even at this age, he absolutely adored her. And he was willing to try anything to make her forgive him.
"I'll get down on my knees and beg you right here in front of everyone if you won't forgive me."
Raven still kept up her retreat.
"I mean it. I'll do it."
She quickened her pace. So Robin waited till she got in plain sight of as many of the peers as possible and run to the front of her where he collapsed to his knees and said as load as he could, "I'm sorry I was stupid. I didn't mean to be so careless to our friends. I'm sorry I made you mad. I never want you mad at me. Please, please forgive me Raven Roth!" His hands were clasped in front of her.
"Let 'em say we're crazy, I don't care about that
Put your hand in my hand baby
Don't ever look back
Let the world around us just fall apart
Baby we can make it if we're heart to heart"
Raven's eyes were wide with horror. "Robin!" She said in a stern whisper. "Get up! You're embarrassing me."
"I wont till you promise to forgive me. I will do better. I swear. Just give me another chance. Please."
Raven sighed, her anger fading as she shook her head. "Oh, Robin. You really are a jerk." She took his hands and pulled him to his feet. "I'll forgive. Just this once. Don't hurt anymore of our friends! I'll hurt you!"
Robin grinned. "Promise!" And he crossed his heard with his right pointer finger. "Because I don't ever want to lose you."
Raven gave a still slightly embarrassed smile as she shook her head and started to walk by him. Robin trotted up next to her and wrapped his arm around her shoulder. "Cause we're friends. You're mine! Forever we'll be together. You'll see."
Except they weren't. At eleven he had claimed possession but he had chosen Kori over Raven. And she'd never forget it.
It was a rough day. A rough weekend. Raven had made him choose. And he chose. Tim knew he made the right choice. Now he was in search of her.
She seemed to be missing. Or hiding. Tim frowned. He hadn't been able to keep Raven from his mind since he had met her. Even when they were little and he had a run in with her father, he had demanded he give him a chance because Tim wasn't going anywhere. She would always be a part of Raven's life. Always.
The small child with purple hair pulled back with a headband answered the door with a humph. It was her birthday and Robin and his group were there with her group and some more friends from their third grade class.
Raven should have been happy. This was her birthday party. But she wasn't. She was very upset. She sat off to the side with a few of her friends while everyone else enjoyed the games.
Tim stood off to the side watching her. This was his Raven. And her party. She wasn't even attempting to enjoy herself. So Tim made it his mission to find out why and rectify the problem.
"I'm so glad I found you
I'm not gonna lose you
whatever it takes I will stay here with you"
It took him a better part of an hour to figure it out. Turns out her father didn't like most of her friends. To be precise, Raven's father didn't like any of the boys. This really irked him and he knew it would the rest of the boys there too. But in an effort to save her party he kept the new found information to himself and decided to address this issue at the source.
Tim went looking for Trigon Roth. He was found sitting in the dining room staring irritably at the newspaper while his wife supervised the party. Tim watched him for a moment before stepping into the room and making his presence known.
Trigon looked to him. "The party is outside only." He said before looking back to his paper.
"Yes, it is. And you made it so Raven is not having fun."
Trigon glanced to the small boy with a brow raised. "Oh? Any how did I manage to do that?"
"Because you don't like her guy friends."
"That's my right as a parent."
"Yes, well you better get used to me. Because I'm not going anywhere. One day I will be part of your family. So maybe its time you start to like me."
The look on his face still made Tim laugh. He was completely perturbed. But Tim had stood his ground and when he left he went in search for the birthday girl. He spent the rest of the day trying to make Raven laugh. By the end he had succeeded at least a little.
"Take it to the good times
See it through the bad times
Whatever it takes is what I'm gonna do"
"Kids will say whatever comes to their minds." Tim mused as he went outside still looking for his girl.
There were other memories that made him laugh. Their first date. They had managed to convince their parents when they were just turning 14 to let them go to the movies by themselves. Raven's mom would bring them and Tim's dad would pick them up. They were going to the nine o'clock showing of Romeo and Juliet.
It was so funny because even though they had done many things together before, they had labeled this one a 'date' and so now they were very nervous. Every innocent touch, when their hands were brush together, or reach into the popcorn bucket at the same time or get caught looking at each other, they'd turn away in a hurry with reddened cheeks.
Tim chuckled. The embarrassment now was replaced with butterflies. The nervousness was only there when the date was special. As his thoughts turned in this direction he found his quarry.
"Should have known." Tim said to himself as he quickened his pace. She was with her group as they put some finishing touches on graduation banners that would be spread around town. Large groups of students were gathered around the football field painting and having a good time. Raven was among then, walking through the ranks with her notebook to her chest.
Tim made a direct route right to her. When the student body had seen him, most of the noise was hushed before it became completely silent. Raven looked around them somewhat questioning. Then her eyes looked up to meet his.
He gave her a soft smile. She gave him none.
"I've been looking for you." He said as he approached her.
"I'm always with my committee if not in class." She said and turned back to walking the row.
"What's wrong?" He asked.
Raven gave a bitter chuckle and shook her head. "It was your decision Tim. I don't begrudge you that. But I told you my terms."
Tim shook his head, and grabbed her arm to turn her. "Yes, and I made the right one."
"Do you just want to rub it in my face?"
"Raven, I chose you!"
"Let 'em say we're crazy, what do they know
Put your arms around me baby
Don't ever let go
Let the world around us just fall apart
Baby we can make it if we're heart to heart"
The look of surprise brought a smile to his face. "You really didn't think I wouldn't, did you?"
"You left. You walked out. What was I supposed to think?"
"I left to break up with Kori. It's always been you, Rae."
Raven gave a soft smile. "Really?"
Tim shook his head as he pulled her into his arms and kissed her. Everyone outside, who had been watching and waiting anxiously, broke into cheers. The two broke apart laughing, tears in Raven's eyes.
Tim whipped them away gently. "Really. It shouldn't have taken me this long to realize it. But we're together and nothings going to stop us now."
Raven leaned back into him and laughed as the tears rolled down her cheeks.
"Ooh, all that I need is you
All that I ever need
And all that I want to do
Is hold you forever, ever and ever, hey"
Graduation came and went before they knew what was happening. The summer flew by even faster. Now the group sat huddled at a couple booths they had pushed together: Jen, Karen, Kara, Kendra Donna, Libby, Raven, Tim, Gar, Vic, Wally, Roy, Garth and Baran.
They sat laughing and talking, reminiscing about old time and planning for the future. A future in which they hoped to be just as close. The group planned to split into a few different colleges, all relatively close.
As Tim walked Raven home that night, hand in hand, they planned for an even bigger future. Not just for the next few years, with a promise to be friends till the end. A future in which they would forever more be together as husband and wife.
"I know this is old school, like giving you my letterman's jacket and all but I want you to have it anyways. My promise to you."
Raven turned to face him as he handed her a silver chain with his class ring on it, blue eyes shinning as Raven grinned. Tim fastened it around her neck and kissed her cheek. She smiled sweetly.
"I still can't believe it's ended. High school seemed so short."
"You did miss two years of it." Tim pointed out.
"Yea but I came back. And this was the shortest year I've had."
"They'll only get shorter, I'm told, as you get older. But it doesn't matter. We will have a blast each step of the way. You, me and the rest of our friends."
"Our friends. Strange twist of events our friends have been through. Even while Jen was with Gar, I always thought she'd be back with Vic when all is said and done. And who'd of thought Donna would be the one to keep Roy to one girl for more than a week. And Vic with an anti-jock girl I'm sure I never knew. And you, completely blind when I thought you were the most observant out of anyone I knew."
Tim huffed a little with a small smile. "I know, I know."
Raven gently bumped arms with him. "How'd she take it?"
Tim shrugged. "I think she knew it was coming. She only nodded and walked away. It took me forever to find you though. I swear you were avoiding me all weekend."
"I was. I couldn't bear the sight of you after I thought you had chosen to be with Kori."
"I was stupid all year long and have missed the biggest events that I should have spent with you. It'll never happen again. There is no other. Never has been. It's always been you, Rae. And it always will be."
"And we can build this dream together, standing strong forever. Nothing's gonna stop us now. And if this world runs out of lovers we'll still have each other. Nothing's gonna stop us, nothing's gonna stop us now." –Starship