Sorry about taking so long. I know I said that I would update in a few days, not a few weeks but I got preoccupied. I've recently found an interest in the Bat Clan and have been reading lots of their comics.
Disclaimer: I do not own Teen Titans or any related material in this fanfic.
Starfire soared through the air towards the location her boyfriend had said the disturbance was at. Whilst flying she mulled over recent events. Red X had told them that Beast Boy was behind the attack on the girl. She knew that Red X was merely trying to convince them to attack Beast Boy and treat him like just another criminal and that they should do their own investigating but Beast Boy's past made it hard for her to do so. She was still hurt from his betrayal and she hated the rift that it had caused in the team. No matter what Nightwing said, the team would never be the same without Beast Boy; he was the glue that held the team together. She could have blamed him, vented her anger on him for betraying them but it was justified. They'd mistreated him, vented their emotions on him and expected him to just take it all in stride. It was inevitable that he would snap and take revenge. Anyone would. Still, justifying his actions didn't make it any easier so Starfire focused herself on her task.
There! That black figure running away from the location! Starfire veered towards him and accelerated, planning on tackling the person.
'That couldn't have gone better even if I'd planned it!' Red X thought. The Titans would arrive at the battle scene and find Beast Boy trapped. They would take him in for questioning and then everything would fold out from there. The only loose end was Jinx, and X planned on dealing with her himself.
Unfortunately for the costumed thief, Starfire had taken it upon herself to stop whatever mischief he was causing and so, Red X found himself in the grip of a super powered alien.
Cursing as they rolled across the rooftop, X used his taser on the alien in order to escape. Whilst the shock didn't hurt her, it still surprised her enough to allow Red X to escape her grip and try to make his get-away. Before he could do so however, he was struck in the back by energy blasts and knocked to the ground. He quickly rolled onto his back and blasted at Starfire. One managed to wrap around her and so X quickly scrambled to his feet and sprinted for the roof edge.
Starfire's anger was growing however and she responded by letting loose an energy blast from her body and vaporizing the X that was preventing her arms from moving. She then spotted X about to leap off the building and shot after him. Just as he was about to fall, Starfire grabbed him by his arms. X grimaced beneath his mask and waited till they weren't flying so high before deploying both of his wrist blades. The suddenly sprouting blades caused Starfire to lose her grip on her quarry and drop him. X landed in a roll and sprinted off.
"Not to impose or anything, but I believe you have a friend who you need to talk to," X called out to her, cursing his lack of witty repartee. He then activated his cloaking device and made his escape, he'd just have to hope the Titans made it to the changeling before Jinx did.
Of course it just so happened that a Titan did make it to Beast Boy before Jinx. It's just that they didn't do what X had wanted them to do and instead did what she wanted to do.
"Jinx!" The pink-haired sorceress was alerted to the location of her partner by a sharp call and was surprised to find him trapped in some sort of red gooey substance. She'd ask about it later, right now she needed to get him out of here before the Titans showed up. They were bound to have been alerted considering how much noise Gar and his assailant ad caused. Jinx quickly found her way down into the street and walked up to Gar, trying to figure out how to get him out.
"Could your powers solidify the red stuff?" the trapped changeling asked his ally. Unfortunately, Jinx didn't know the answer to that question and bit her lip, trying to decide whether or not to try it. She figured that if it didn't work, things couldn't possibly get any worse. So she pointed an open palm at Gar and prayed it worked.
"Yes!" Gar let out a whoop as he changed into a gorilla, thereby shattering the now solid encasement. "Come on, we better get going or else the Titans will… What? What are you looking at?"
The changeling followed her gaze to a cloaked figure standing on a rooftop some fifty meters away. The changeling narrowed his eyes as he recognised the figure and immediately tried to mobilise the sorceress beside him.
"Come on Jinx, we better go."
"No buts. She could stop us if she wanted to and she hasn't yet so we better go before the other Titans arrive."
Jinx folded to her partner's argument and the two escaped into the night. The cloaked figure continued to stare at the ground where they had stood long after they left.
"Starfire, this is Nightwing, have you arrived at the location yet?" Nightwing asked over his wrist-mounted communicator as he steered the Wing-Cycle between traffic. A few moments passed and he was about to repeat his message when he received his reply.
"Negative, Nightwing." The costumed vigilante frowned; surely Starfire had arrived by now. "I caught Red X fleeing and pursued him, we fought and he managed to escape." Starfire seemed upset at those final words but at least he had an explanation and at least some clue as to who the two fighters were.
"That's okay, Starfire. Proceed to the location and help Cyborg search for clues, I'll be there soon. Nightwing out." He ended the communication and gunned the engine, trying to arrive at the location as soon as possible.
Cyborg was scanning the some red shards on the ground when Nightwing arrived. Raven was floating in a meditative pose to the side and Starfire was patrolling the surrounding area. His team was a well-oiled machine when it came to crime fighting but a rift had formed between all of them since Beast Boy had betrayed them. They all blamed themselves about it and, to a certain degree, the others. Everybody was wary of everybody else or else afraid to get close in Raven's case.
Cyborg seemed to be the most obviously affected. Beast Boy had been his best friend; they had done almost everything together and had been practically joined at the hip. Cyborg believed that he could have done a lot more to keep the emerald changeling from crossing the line but he also put a lot of the blame on Nightwing's shoulders. The two had been at odds for years after the betrayal and had only recently begun to tolerate the other's presence.
If Cyborg had been the most obviously affected, then Raven was the most deeply affected. Nobody had been real sure of the Beast Boy and Raven's relationship. Sometimes the two would be at each other's throats, other times they would appear to be the perfect couple. Nightwing had never really understood it himself, but simply knew there had been more going on than at first glance. Raven had closed herself off from her teammates as a result of Beast Boy's betrayal, refusing to get hurt by anyone else claiming to be her friend.
Starfire had become far less bubbly and had put a lot of effort into understanding more things about Earth and its customs. She believed that it was her naiveté that had caused Beast Boy to snap and was determined to never let it happen again. At first, Nightwing had been happy that she was trying so hard to understand more about Earth, but then he realised that not only was she doing it for the wrong reasons but it also took away a lot of Starfire's charm, not that she was any less beautiful or entertaining, it's just that she was just less… Star.
Nightwing himself had felt the effects of the betrayal and not just that it damaged the team. It caused him to notice a lot of flaws about himself, things that he had overlooked. He had been focusing on Beast Boy's crime fighting abilities so much that he stopped reading between the lines and focus on Beast Boy himself. He knew that he was the main cause of Beast Boy's betrayal and he'd done everything in his power to correct those flaws, even if it meant some his other skills received less focus. Unfortunately, with his team in its current state it was too little, too late.
"Well, there's no doubt about it. Red X was definitely here. This stuff here is the exact same stuff that that suit uses as weapons. No idea about who he was fighting though. Coulda been the Joker for all we know." Cyborg's deep voice broke Nightwing away from his thoughts but before he could voice his suspicions, Starfire piped up.
"Red X mentioned that I had a 'friend that I need to talk to'. Perhaps he was talking about Beast Boy and the other person was Beast Boy," Cyborg's one human eye narrowed and Raven broke out of her meditation. Nightwing realised that everybody's focus was on him and what he would do. He took a deep breath and spoke.
"The possibility's high but we can't trust X, he has little proven motivation for his actions and is most likely trying to set Beast Boy up. On the other hand, until we know exactly what Beast Boy's playing at we can't make any judgements about him. If either is spotted they are to be incapacitated, X can be given to police but we want Beast Boy for questioning. Does anyone have anything to say?" Nightwing's question was a bit of a surprise but Raven recovered quickly.
"The hospital reported that one of their patients was assaulted shortly before the disturbance was reported. It appears that Miss Flinders had a midnight visitor." Raven's report added more to the mystery that was further clarified by Cyborg.
"Yeah, I asked about that. Seems that something caused her bed to collapse, clean breaks on all the legs. It couldn't have been Beast Boy as there's no animal that could cut through four metal bars simultaneously. Flinders isn't talking, seems a tad suspicious if you ask me." Nightwing knew what Cyborg was getting at. Beast Boy had been pursuing Red X, who had been Selinda Flinder's midnight visitor. It could possibly fit but for a few problems.
"I see what you're getting at Cyborg, but I don't think that's the case. For instance, how did Beast Boy know that X was after Miss Flinders? Why would X go after her in the first place? It's too easy, we'll give the matter some more investigation before we come to conclusions."
There, he hadn't completely shot it down, merely said that they needed more proof. Everybody seemed to be happy about it, though Raven seemed troubled. Hmm, I wonder how much I can trust with this. Normally I'd trust completely but with Beast Boy. I'd better keep an eye on her.
"So, you've got your own place to stay I take it?" Beast Boy asked the other occupant of the flat.
"Yeah, I guess I better head over there. Anything else you wanted first?" Jinx answered, walking towards the door.
"Nah, but come over here about four o'clock, a friend of mine oughta be here by then."
"Okay, see ya then."
"Bye." Alone again. Most of his life recently had been spent alone; he'd kept away from cities as a general rule but had occasionally ventured towards one. New York had been a prime example of this; he'd gotten in a boatload of trouble and caused treble that. He'd also made a good friend, despite his circumstances. He hoped his friend got here soon because it meant that he could move onto the next step of his plan.
OK, next chapter might be out in the next few weeks. School's started in Australia again so I might not have much time to write (didn't spend much time writing in the holidays either though). I'm sure most of you know who Beast Boy's friend is and yes I know that I've went back to calling him Beast Boy outside of speech. There's a reason for that. I just haven't exactly thought of it yet. It's probably something along the lines of 'he's becoming a hero again so he's needs a name and NO I'm not calling him Changeling'.
Review. You know you want to (even if you don't, please do so anyway). Also tell me what you think of Nightwing's behaviour, I don't want him to a complete hard-ass.