Hi my little apple demons! Time for the next chapta of doom, yo!

Oh, a few events. First, the one-year anniversary of Book Two! Second, Merry Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice, Ramadan, etc! And New Year!

I really need to pay more attention to this. I'm sorry for the wait, I was caught up in way too many things...and kinda forgot about this temporarily. However, I'm determined not to become The Really Good Writer Who Never Updates. I will see this story to the end, even if to the end of time.


More review response change-don't you just love this? The new system meant for review response was too ackward for me. So, thanks to the new Forum feature, which I love, review response will be there. The link is in my profile...twice, in fact. It'll be old-day responses,just not here.Oh, and in your spare time, drop me a line. It may not seem so, but I'm on often. I'm just a slow typer.

Chapter 17: Internal Grief


Beast Boy's eyes sleepily opened. His vision blurred, he could not see well.He was in a hazy...white...place...that was unfamilliar.

He blinked, and his vision cleared. He gasped.

He was in a room of some sort. The walls were chalk white, and in some places transparent. He was lying on a bench, not falling through for some reason. He saw a door in front of him, bolted shut. There was a small, barred window in the door, through which moans, screams, rather loud sobbing, and the acrid smell of decay, mold, and liverwurst sandwiches came. Other than all this, there was nothing else in the room that he could immediately see but a toilet, sink, and a pair of chains, which, from the looks of it, someone had tried on him and failed.

Twenty seconds later, he realized he was in a jail cell.

Whatever the ghosts had done to him before he was placed here, they had given him some pretty heavy ansenthesia. He still felt sluggish as he attempted to stand up. After about seventeen tries, he gave up. He sank onto the cold, stony ground, wondering why it didn't dissolve beneath his feet. The others said it would...

He became vaguely aware of something on his neck. He used all his strength to open one eye-and saw, barely, a black collar, beeping. He didn't dwell any longer on it. He was tired...very, very tired...

He felt something on his back. Blankey, he thought subconsiously. I thought Elasti-Girl stepped on you!

Something was pressed to his lips...something wet. Yeah...hot chocolate...food for the gods...

It wasn't hot chocolate, unforunately for Beast Boy. It was more like Raven's herbal tea, except that she forgot the sugar and dumped in a bottle of lemon juice instead. His eyes watered involuntarily...

His eyes snapped open. He coughed and sputtered, thrashing wildly on the cold floor. He was in intense pain, but he was awake.

"Good. It worked." Pain left BB blind, but he could hear that tired, hopeless, wornvoice. He felt for whoever it was. "Who...are you?"

He heard a sigh. "That's not all that important now. You're in a jail cell at the Ghost Jail. Walker's goons threw you in here." She paused. "You're the first human I've seen in several years. At least, I think you're human."

Finally, the pain began to recede. Beast Boy could see clearly. He looked straight at the inmate who was addressing him.

What he saw was, undoutebly, the dirtiest person/ghost he had ever seen. He couldn't even tell its gender. Heassumed it was a he.Dirt, grease, and burns covered his face so heavily, that if there was any face underneath, he couldn't see it. Only his eyes, sad and downcast, were visible, and even then just barely. His hair was charred black, and it was even crumbling away. His skin was flaked and grimy, his only clothing was torn rags.

The sight made Beast Boy want to either cry or at least give the poor guy a hug. But, at that point, he really had no idea what to do. "Where...are my friends? Robin...that other wierd kid..."

"They probably suffered your fate. Thrown in cells without question.But, they were probably not as fortunate. Walker's goons thought this cell was empty." He let out a hollow laugh. "How may were there?"

"Ten...less than ten...more than ten."

"Hmm...even if we do get out, Walker will find us by the time we even find them." He turned longingly towards the door.

"Wait...what?" Beast Boy stood up. Even in his short stature, when the inmate was sitting down, he looked rather small.

"You want to get out of here, don't you?"

BB looked around. "Uh...duh..."

"Then? What are you waiting for?" Various layers of hardened filth cracked as he turned his head. He sighed again. "Even when it is barely there, faith is a weapon above all others. Without faith, there would be no God, and no existence. Do...you have faith that this is a terrible place?"

"Who doesn't?"

"Heck, I dunno. Do you have faith that we can escape?"

Sweat formed on BB's face. "Sorta..."

"Do you have faith that we can escape?"

"Yes! Yes!"

"Then we can. C'mon." He got up-losing about one pound of pure yuck on the ground behind him- and half-hobbled, half-flew towards the door. "I know this is a bit sudden, as you just woke up, but we are going to find your friends." He held out a grisled hand and beckoned to Beast Boy.

He moved foward-hesitantly. "But...how do we get out?"

"Easy. See that collar? That you're wearing?"

Beast Boy looked down at the collar. "What about it?"

"New technology. It prevents you from phasing through the walls and the like. Simply take it off and walk through. Don't worry, he didn't tie it that securely."

BB tugged on the collar. It slipped right off. "Well, whaddya know!" He laughed a little. "So, now what...you?"

"Call me Arert," he said. "Now, give me the collar. Phase through the wall. Don't ask me how, just...think it."

"O...kay..." He stumbled towards the cell wall. It was very cold and looming...and very solid. "What about you?"

"I'll follow after you. I'm wearing one of these collars too, just can't see it...there we go." Arert pulled his off, with a bit more difficulty than BB had. "Yes. Ahh, this feels good." He stretched. Plenty of dirt fell from him, but he didn't look any different afterwards. "Go. I will be behind you."

"Okay. Hey, uh...thanks...Arert. Cool name." He gave him a thumbs-up. Arert looked at the ground. "Look, I have a few questions. One...did you happen to meet a ghost...named Terra? She has long blonde hair..."

Arert suddenly turned away. "This is a large prison. She may be here, but no, I have not seen her. I will look for her as we go, though."

"Okay. Second...why are you...so...not cleanish?"

"There's no such thing as showers here. Are we going or not?" He, with slight difficulty, flew up and zipped through the wall.

"Yeah...we're going." He took a deep breath, and ran towards the wall.

I think I'll stop here.