SO: So it's been a while. Between laptop defects and college finals, I present an extended chapter. Well, it probably just looks longer in Word...
The buzz of excitement left over from their actions of the night reached through the roof of the building that was their affectionately termed, " Home base ". Rebelle could hear the retelling of their adventure over and over again; little details taken out here and added in there. It made her smile that they were so happy. And that they had been successful. If any one time they failed, she knew it would mean trouble.
Failure leads to doubt. And doubt is a poison that she could not afford to cure. Time was running out. Her voice had been heard. Her face had been seen. The Titans knew of her powers, or at least, if they didn't, they would soon. They'd be looking for her and RJ before long. Everyone would.
They had one more job to do. Then came the hard part: waiting. Would he answer? Would he ignore her? Would she have to go at this alone? Would their last attempt at gaining the super villain's attention even get off the ground? Honestly, it didn't need to succeed, they weren't even going to take anything. But because it was different, there were many more things that could go wrong. Too many questions and no answers. Thinking too much about one thing made her head hurt.
Thinking too much on an empty stomach especially wasn't a good thing. And what a full stomach she had. Smirking to herself at the show she had put on earlier, the very reason she had confined herself to the roof, Rebelle turned her head to observe the pile of fast food and ramen containers left in her wake.
She couldn't explain it. But after all that, she had been so very hungry. And she was never a big eater to begin with. Bags on top of bags, on top of ramen containers, on top of plastic containers, on top of soda cups, on top of plates and bowls. And she was still picking at a fruit salad. She just couldn't help herself; so was said when she snapped at those who go too close to her pile of food. Who knew powers drained you that much?
Ticking her lips, her right hand was brought up above her face, as she was lying flat on her back against the roof. Turning it over in front of the stars, her head moved to the side a little for observation. It looked like a normal enough hand. She knew, she'd had it all her life. So what was that blue glow all about earlier?
Brown eyes squinted in concentration as she tried to make it appear again. She knew she didn't just imagine it; there was the matter of that warmth that covered the expanse of her limb when she destroyed things. Teeth were grit as she attempted to force the light. But her hand stayed the same it always had been.
" Hey, rebel girl! "
Abruptly, she turned her head at the voice. RJ, and that little girl that had designed the Sparkle Bombs. Somewhere in her mind, Rebelle was sure that she should be in bed somewhere. Her parents must be worried. The thought was so far away however, that she didn't give it much consideration. Her eyebrows raised was the indication for the other to go on with what he came to say. While Alice, skipped over to where she was and threw her arms around her neck in a hug.
" Alice here had a great idea. "
Placing her hand on the little girl's back and stroking gently, Rebelle looked between the two. Her facial expression changed to that of slight confusion and interest. Alice giggled and nuzzled her face into the front of her shirt.
" I'm going to speak for you. "
Her mouth opened to say something, but she quickly caught herself. She didn't want to hurt the girl's feelings, but no one spoke for her. She had a mouth, she knew how to talk. She just couldn't control what happened when she did talk. Besides, there were things she knew that Alice didn't know. And didn't need to know. Narrowed eyes zeroed in on RJ standing near the door that led to the stairs.
He maintained his boyish grin and stuffed his hands in his pockets. " Don't look at me like that. She's just going to read your lips. "
A brow rose at that and she looked down at Alice. Who smiled up at her and nodded. " I'm very good with lip-reading! It's how I know when my mother plans to send me to bed early so her and daddy can play. "
A large bead of sweat formed on the backs of Rebelle's and RJ's heads. She just patted the girl on the head and pushed herself to stand up. It was time to let the other's know what the next move was, selections to be made, and a few other surprises she was considering.
" Dude! What happened out there! "
Robin prided himself on being the best at what he did. He knew he had the proper training to do whatever he wanted to do. His stubborn streak was a mile wide and several in both directions. If he put his mind to it, he was a force to be reckoned with. A one-teen army with the skills to back up his will should his weapon well run dry.
He'd fought them all, from a spoiled brat to an interdimensional demon. And while he may not have won every fight himself, he was still standing. While they were not. That accounted for something in his book.
So how was it, that he and his team were forced off the trail of a few kids out for a joyride!
Annoyance ticked at his features as his hands came around behind his head to meet there and press down on the back of his neck. He'd been up the rest of the night in deep thought about the whole situation. That girl, he would assume the leader from the way she gave out the orders, had some powers.
He hadn't gotten a clear chance to examine her on account of spending most of the chase trying to keep from going over the side or under rubber wheels and over rough pavement. But somehow, her attacks were connected to her hands, the music and her voice.
" Force fields...? "
Maybe she had some device on her hands that could cause her to throw force fields at them instead of surrounding herself as per the logical use. Turn a defensive into an offensive. It wasn't an unheard of idea. Certainly not anything new. But he would need more data, more information on the subject at hand.
Speaking of which...
He had seen her face. She looked normal, if you didn't mind the colors of her hair. Which, he couldn't be accurate on the true color of her hair. But given her race, he made a guess and went with black. Cyborg and Raven had gotten close enough to get a good description of her face. With that and the little data he had, he entered it into the main computer.
" Avalon, Rebella H. Teenager. Student at Jump High. Daughter to public servant Jonathan Avalon and Mary-Ella Avalon. Sibling, 1. Deceased. Andrew G. Avalon. Public servant. Killed in the line of duty, March 28th. "
The other members of his team gathered around him while he read off the data; each of them memorizing the female's face. That which held a look of anger, the position she was in suggesting she was being held that way for the picture to be taken. The slight tilt of her head even more of a clue, her hair going in a direction to the side of the frame.
" Kinda...normal looking to be such a hell raiser, don't you think? " Cyborg came to stand on his left side with his arms folded over his chest.
" Does her strange coloring indicate her to be different from her pack? Perhaps she is the alpha female and wishes to make it known? " Starfire hovered by his right side, albeit closer than Cyborg.
Raven stood next to her, bracing her hands on the front of the massive keyboard. " Cries for attention. But the other stuff is probably right, she was the only one giving orders last night. "
Robin nodded his confirmation, while Beast Boy climbed up on Cyborg's shoulder to see too. " I remember her! She was on TV yesterday! "
Cyborg tilted his head to the side in thought, then he too nodded and pointed. " He's right. I remember coming in on her picture. She went missing a few days ago. They think she was kidnaped. "
Robin reached over and pressed a few buttons to bring up the items stolen so far. " Clearly she hasn't been. She didn't seem to be in distress last night. What I still don't get, is why these things? If she has powers, and clearly she does, why not go after the big stuff like everyone else? "
Beast Boy leaped at the controls and started pressing buttons like crazy. When he was finished, there was an absurd, and childike drawing on the screen. A robot of some sort, with the stolen heaters for feet, the lake equipment for legs, the lights from the arena for head and chest, and the cars taken last night for arms. Turning back around to face his teammates, he presented his achievement.
" She intends to lead this! " He pointed for emphasis, " Against the city and take all the hair dye for herself so no one else has one! Dude! Think of all the bad hair days she would leave in her wake! Roots as far as the eye can see! No one will come out of their homes, the city would be her's for the taking! "
Three pairs of eyes rolled at his idea, the fourth pair actually considered it, but quickly came to the conclusion, given her teammates reaction that this was not the reasoning behind the thefts.
" As...likely as that is..." Robin started gently, turning back to the screen, " Look at her hair and her name. Like Raven said, it's a cry for attention. That maybe what these jobs are. She could be rebelling against the many restrictions put on teenagers in the city. Only, she's doing it the wrong way. "
Beast Boy puffed up. " Like there's a right way! You've seen the police! They don't care! They hear ' teenager ' they immediately think ' trouble '. They've been getting worse and worse with the bogus rules! It was only a matter of time before something like this happened! "
Starfire brought the profile back up once again. " She has no criminal record. Nothing that would suggest she means ill against the city. Perhaps she is just...misunderstood. She has not hurt anyone yet. "
Raven shook her head and brought up a few smaller screens. The owner of the docks, the attendant at the lake, the owner of the arena and the manager of the car dealership. " What about these people? They have to make up the cost somehow for the stolen property? "
" Oh c'mon! Aside from the cars, no one's gonna miss that stuff that much. It's not like what she took was expensive, and what was, it was from people who could afford it. "
The half demonic sorceress looked at him in surprise. " Are you suggesting we excuse her from breaking the law because she stole little things so far? Cyborg, she trashed your car. "
That was all that needed to be said. For the memory of his baby sitting up on supports in the garage, in serious need of repairs, was enough to banish his compassion. His human eye twitched and teeth gritted. " Off with her head. "
Sweat collect on the backs of all their heads at the mechanical man's words. Starfire and Beast Boy tugged him away from the console with promises to help rebuild the T-car better than ever.
Robin, who's eyes had been closed in consideration while everyone spoke and contributed, opened his eyes and began gathering all the information they had into one folder. " What do you think Raven? "
The dark Titan folded her arms over her chest while she watched him work with a bored look on her face. " She broke the law. Whether she's justified or not, is for the courts to decide. Our job is to stop her. Unfortunately, said courts are a running a little low on fair trials. "
" There's still the matter of her powers..."
She nodded. " She did attack us. She's not innocent. But she wasn't interested in fighting us, or the usual things. All she wanted to do last night was get away from us. And she did destroy the bridge. If she could do that, she could have crushed the T-car with us in it. Maybe we shouldn't be so quick to dismiss the whole kidnap thing. It would explain the erraticness of her choices in targets. "
" And her blatant lack of skill. There's still the fact that she was giving out the orders that bothers me about that plan. She didn't know what she was doing when she went up against us, but she ordered the others clearly. When she told them to scatter, they broke off. Later on they came back and formed single file with her car in front of us. She deliberately kept herself and her driver between us and the other cars. "
Both of them stood in silent deliberation for a few seconds, before the same conclusion came to them. " We're going to need more information. "
" This is it ladies and gentlemen! Our final act is written and here are your scripts! "
Alice was having the time of her life. Working so close with the leader of their revolution, someone older than her, but treating her in such a way that the other high school kids had never done. She couldn't ask for anything better. And her plans...so simplistic in their manner, but the wide scheme was ingenious.
" We're going to give them one more show before our curtain call! And what a show it's going to be! No more sneaking, no more snatching in the night! No more excuses! We're going to show this town that the teenagers will not sit still and be stepped on like so many before them! "
Rebelle stood confidently in the raised area where announcements were made; her mouth moving with words unspoken until she herself, gave them a voice. Alice was even starting to become good at matching her tone to the gestures that Rebelle made.
" We're mad as hell! And we're not going to take it anymore! "
Cheers roared around her as she started to get everyone worked up. It was like a really big pep rally, except everyone was on the team.
" Rally's Electronic Roadhouse is our target. My little ones, this is your last ride. When someone tells you to go, you go straight home! No sense in getting arrested when we've already got away with so much. "
This made everyone laugh. Well, almost everyone. There was this one girl, Alice and several others were beginning to notice that seemed to be displeased with things Rebelle did. She sat in the back of the room and whispered to those around her, a small band of her friends and those who actually listened to her, while everyone else listened eagerly to what their leader had to say.
" Ten-Ten " Marie Williams was a juvenile delinquent. She was just as angry with the way things were in Jump City, so much so that she had devoted her life to being a pain in the ass to all sources of authority. It had gotten her kicked out of school and behind the bars of juve hall for very good reasons. She didn't care for the way Rebelle did things. She wanted to be in charge; claiming that the only way to get them to back off was for them to learn who they needed to fear and who they didn't.
If I ran this gig, Jump City wouldn't be coming down so hard on anyone because they're afraid of everyone. They'd be coming down on no one because they would all be afraid of ME! We should be blowing buildings apart and taking over the police department. This is our city, dammit! We should take it back by force! Not wait for her little " plan " to do it for us!
She leaned over to the guy next to her, " She's so dramatic. Why doesn't she just tells us what we're going to snatch next and leave? Honestly. Oops. She can't. Can't speak. Can't control her powers. "
Many suspected she was just jealous of the attention and loyalty that Rebelle had. Not to mention her powers. She was ready to moan to whoever would listen about how she was way more deserving of powers than Rebelle. She could lead them a lot better. For when Ten-Ten was in juvenile hall, she was the leader of her own group. In school, she was the leader of her own group. And in the streets, she was the leader in her own group. This girl who had done nothing to deserve her respect and her loyalty.
The guy next to her snickered. " I don't know what makes her so special anyway. She's not even out of high school. And she thinks she can lead all of us? "
Ten-Ten narrowed her eyes as Rebelle went on with her latest plan. " This is just ridiculous. Why don't you just say you've been doing all this for cheap thrills? "
Alice's voice stopped, and heads turned. Ten-Ten didn't back down. She knew, Rebelle knew who she was. They were a large group in a small building. News traveled rather fast. Everything was still and quiet for a long time. The tension in the air was so thick a knife wouldn't cut through it, a bayonet would be more useful. Finally, Rebelle tipped her head to the side to crack her neck; a show of keeping her temper. " Do you uh...have a problem, Marie? "
Ten-Ten stood up so fast she knocked her chair over. " It's Ten-Ten and you're damn right I do! "
" Then I suggest you see a doctor. We're trying to plan." Rebelle stepped down from the band area and gestured to those around her who were paying attention.
" No, you're trying to plan! You don't fool me, I know what you're up to! "
" Oh? And what am I up to? "
" Doing all these little things because you're scared to take the whole establishment on! If I had those damn powers I'd be bustin' shit up! "
" And that's exactly why we're in the position we're in! Idiot! If you went around destroying things, with people in them, do you think the city would be so quick to release its death grip on the adolescent population! That's what the fuck everyone does now! "
Things were getting heated. People had started to back up, leaving Rebelle and Ten-Ten in a circle together. Alice was standing firm behind Rebelle, looking as fierce as the older girl was.
" You don't see them restricted by these fuckin' rules do you! "
" That's because they're fucking criminals, you bull-headed moron! They didn't follow the rules when they were fair, why the hell would they start when they're unfair! They're the goddamn reason why the people are afraid of us now! "
" Then I say we give them something to be afraid of! " Ten-Ten was so incensed with her words that she pounded on the table with her fists.
Rebelle closed her eyes, and seemed to calm down considerably with that action. Alice adjusted her tone accordingly. " I think you've had enough excitement tonight Ten-Ten. You should go home. "
" Oh? Because I had enough excitement or because you want me to be silent about the truth? " The grin on her face was positively vicious.
" Ten-Ten... "
" You're afraid to take them all our! You're not fit to lead any of us! "
" URUSEE! "
All eyes turned to the bar. Alice had climbed a chair was standing upon it with just the most livid look on her face. Blue eyes flashed with so much anger, Rebelle feared she was in danger of spontaneous combustion.
Accusingly, she pointed a finger at Ten-Ten. " Dare ni iken shitenda temee! "
Ten-Ten snorted at her. " I don't know what you just said, but I don't like the way you said it! "
Rebelle interrupted this time, narrowing her eyes at the other girl while her hand gripped her shoulder. Alice regained her composure and hopped down to sit in a chair. " Leave her alone. "
Ten-Ten threw her arm off and took a stance like she was about to attack Rebelle. Who just backed up and brought her hands up to her chest. Ten-Ten smirked. " You couldn't lead us. If you didn't have those powers, I'd kick your ass right now..."
Rebelle brought her foot up to shove a table out of the way between the two of them. A few people jumped, others got up on top of things to get a better view. RJ came to stand behind her, but she put her hand up to stop him. Then her hand came forward, and the other one coming up to join it.
Eyes were on Ten-Ten now. She looked over Rebelle. She was bigger than she was, she had been to juve hall, she definitely knew how to fight. She could really take her apart if she wanted to. But she still had those powers. She could send her through a wall if she got mad enough. She snorted and went to grab her coat. " This isn't a fair fight. I'm outta here..."
" Then get the hell on! "
At this, RJ and Rebelle looked down at Alice. Who was quite pleased with herself and swinging her legs off the edge of a chair. RJ looked back to Ten-Ten and narrowed his eyes. " You heard what she said. "
Ten-Ten nodded to a few of her friends and moved towards the exit. " See you at Rally's. "
You product of the machine's defense. I will not let you get in the way. You shall not protect your master. Come against me again, and I will not be held responsible for your future...
Or lack thereof...