Beast Boy was dead, but his death was not in vain. Because of his self-sacrifice Raven was still alive.
The alert resounded at Titans Tower. Ternion – the fusion of Plasmus, Overload, and Cinderblock – was rampaging through the streets of Jump City. Robin, Starfire, Cyborg, Raven, and Beast Boy all responded to the situation.
At the scene the battle carried on for some time. Facing a creature consisting of stone, ooze, and high voltage proved difficult. At one point Ternion caught Raven and briefly incapacitated her. Oblivious and unaffected by the individual assaults of the conscious titans, the monster targeted Raven for a fatal attack. It now stood towering over the reticent girl in the blue cape. Ternion raised his right fist, charged with electrified ooze.
Of the others, Beast Boy was closest to the monster. He charged as a cheetah to quickly get between Raven and Ternion. Ternion only hesitated for a moment before Beast Boy morphed into his primal form.
Raven began coming to, but was still in a daze.
Robin shouted to Cyborg, "Cy, the sonic boom – now!"
Robin prepared an explosive disk and Cyborg readied his sonic cannon. Both charged toward Ternion, but were stopped in their attempt as they witnessed a horrific blow by Ternion.
Raising the two stone-hard fists of Cinderblock, he brought them downward like hammers. The 'Beast' caught and held them up, but this proved to be a mistake. Ooze crawled from Ternion's self and ensnared the titan. A massive amount of electricity fatally jolted Beast Boy's savage form.
The remaining titans all cried out, "Beast Boy, NO!" before Ternion threw their ally aside.
"Now, Cyborg! Hit him!" ordered Robin. He swiftly tossed his exploding disk in the direction of the behemoth while Cyborg blasted the disk once it was in range of the duo's target.
The sonic boom was successful, separating Plasmus, Cinderblock, and Overload from each other. Starfire fought with Plasmus while Robin took on Cinderblock and Cyborg battled Overload.
Raven crawled over to Beast Boy whose human form was restored because he was not conscious. She checked his vitals and neither heard nor felt a pulse. She looked up, seeing that Cyborg's fight with Overload was closest to her. Raven spotted a fire hydrant nearby. She opened a cover and turned the valve with her power. As water burst forth she directed the stream toward Overload and put him out of commission. Then, between her healing powers and CPR, she attempted to revive Beast Boy
Cyborg called out to Starfire. "Star, take out Cinderblock!" Then he quickly turned to Robin. "Yo Robin, another sonic boom!"
Starfire directed her battle to Cinderblock and Robin prepared a second assault on Plasmus with Cyborg. The alien princess incapacitated her opponent, and Robin and Cyborg decommissioned Plasmus, reducing him to his unconscious human form.
Then each could hear Raven urging Beast Boy to wake up. They hurried over to her location. Raven was still trying to save him, but Beast Boy didn't respond.
"Uh, Cyborg?" Robin inquired.
Cyborg went into medical mode and checked Beast Boy's vitals. His electronic eye and ear both responded with a flat line. "Sorry Robin. He's gone."
Robin went over to Raven and knelt down. "Raven?"
Raven refused to listen. "No, let me be! I'll bring him back!"
"Raven," he tried again, placing a sympathetic hand on her shoulder. "Let him go."
"Noo! Beast Boy, wake up! Wake up!" she cried continuing her attempt to revive him.
After several minutes passed Raven gave up, beating the pavement in defeat. She began to cry. Objects in the area felt the effects of her sadness as windows shattered, lampposts twisted, power lines snapped, and cars overturned or exploded. Even the ground began to rumble.
"Friend Raven, please regain control!" Starfire begged while shedding her own tears.
Raven's mourning slowly subsided and the city was quiet. She remained motionless, her hands still on the pavement. Then she raised her head and looked back at Beast Boy. "Beast Boy," she said to him unsteadily. "This… this is long overdue." She pulled back her hood, cupped her hands around his green cheeks and kissed him. After nearly thirty seconds she tearfully pulled away. "Thank you."
Robin snapped out of the unexpected moment that had just occurred between Raven and the late Beast Boy. He stood up. "Cyborg, take Beast Boy and let's all go back to the tower."
Cyborg approached Beast Boy's body, knelt and picked him up. Cyborg started back toward the T-car as Raven finally stood up. An idea came to her.
"Wait," said Raven. "Can we take him to the hospital?"
"Raven there's nothing that can be done for Beast Boy," said Robin. "Plus I don't want an autopsy done on him. Let's just take Beast Boy back to the tower where we'll honor him."
Raven scowled and gritted her teeth. Her two violet eyes were replaced by four red eyes. "I am in no mood to be arguing," she hissed.
"Raven, please don't get hostile," Cyborg pleaded with Beast Boy still in his arms.
"Then take us to the hospital!" she demanded.
Robin sighed. "Alright, we'll take him."
Relieved by the agreement Raven's violet eyes were restored. "Thank you," she said and went to the T-car with the titans.
Raven sat in the back seat with Beast Boy's body. Starfire sat up front while Cyborg drove. Robin was riding his R-cycle.
Cyborg looked at Raven in the rear view mirror. She never took her eyes from Beast Boy. "Raven?" asked Cyborg.
Raven wasn't listening. She was off in a memory.
It was a quiet afternoon in Jump City. Although the sky was cloudy there was no rain. Raven was sitting on a sofa in the tower lounge reading another book. Everyone else was off doing whatever, leaving her in peace.
Beast Boy entered the room. "Hey Raven," he greeted on approach to the sofa. "Whatcha doing?"
"I'm reading," she replied without looking away. "-and ignoring you."
"I see. Well, I think you need a break."
"Yeah. I think I've finally come up with a way to get you to laugh."
"Is that so? You know it's dangerous to make me laugh."
Beast Boy was not deterred. "Believe me Raven, if you do laugh, the damage will be worth it... even if it hurts me."
"I'm not in the mood for another lame joke," she stated with irritation, still focused on her reading.
Beast Boy placed his left hand over his heart and raised his right hand as if to swear an oath. "I promise, no lame jokes and no pranks," he said with a straight face.
Raven set her book down, but marked the page with her right thumb. "Then how will you ever manage?"
Dismissing her sarcasm, Beast Boy sat down on the sofa. He brought his legs up on the sofa cushion and crossed them as he shifted to face her. He slouched, placing his elbows on his thighs. For a minute he just sat there and looked at her.
Raven looked at him too, but she never said a word. She was mystified by his gaze. 'He has nice eyes,' she thought followed by a quick mental reprimand to stop thinking such things.
What he did could not have been simpler. He furrowed his brow and widened his eyes. Then slowly, simultaneously, Beast Boy closed his irises in toward the bridge of his nose, crossing his eyes. Then he pursed his lips as if to kiss her and slowly leaned toward Raven while keeping his eyes crossed. He held this look for a few more seconds when…
Raven cracked. The smile was small at first, but she couldn't resist as it grew into a broad grin. Then she huffed out a small snort, a chuckle, and finally broke into complete and uncontrollable laughter. The lounge paid a heavy price for this.
From every which way came Cyborg, Robin, and Starfire. "What's going on?" demanded Robin as the newcomers surveyed the continuing damage.
Beast Boy was now standing up with a grand smile. His right arm was raised over his head with his index and middle fingers forming a V. "Success!" was all he said and he marched towards the hallway. Beast Boy turned around. With a smile the last thing he said was, "Raven, you have nice eyes, too," and he left for his room.
Raven's laughter ended when his last comment sunk in. How did he know she was thinking about his eyes? She pulled her hood up, stood and, taking her book, departed the lounge without a word. The others were just stumped.
"Raven," repeated Cyborg.
Raven snapped out of her thoughts. While it was a good memory, reflecting on it and seeing Beast Boy dead beside her, it only caused her sorrow – something she struggled with but was able to suppress. Raven looked at Cyborg's eyes in the rear view mirror.
"I hope you don't mind if I ask why we're taking him to the hospital," wondered Cyborg.
"There's something I want to do for him," she began. "I'm just now realizing that there's so much he's done for me. He's taken hits for me several times in the past, finally made me laugh, and he's saved my life. I owe him for that, and the hospital is where I'll repay my debt to him."
The T-car and R-cycle parked in the hospital lot. Robin dismounted the cycle while the other titans got out of the car. Cyborg took Beast Boy's body out and everyone followed Raven's lead into the facility where they gathered behind her at the reception desk.
"How can I help you?" asked the reception nurse. She noticed Beast Boy. "What's wrong with your friend?"
"He's dead," replied Raven without expression.
"Then you must take him to the city coroner."
"No, I'm here for something else." What she said next completely stunned her teammates. "Direct me to the fertility ward."
"Raven, what are you doing?" asked Robin in disbelief.
"Honoring Beast Boy just like you said. This is what I decided on."
"But how can you when Beast Boy is deceased?" wondered Starfire.
"It's part of a procedure for Posthumous Reproduction, Starfire," Cyborg answered. "An extraction can be performed if the body hasn't been dead for long."
"Please, explain this procedure," she said confused by the term.
"Later Starfire," said Robin. "Not right now."
"Is that what you want?" asked the receptionist. "Miss, I'm afraid that can't be done as you are a minor."
Raven's temper flared and her four red eyes returned. "Don't you sit there and tell me that!" she roared. "I will have this procedure!"
The receptionist cowered behind her desk. Hospital staff and patients screamed and scattered in terror. The hospital began to rumble.
"Raven calm yourself!" ordered Robin. Then he turned his attention to the receptionist. "Please miss, don't enrage her. If this is what she wants, then please do as she says."
Raven calmed herself when the receptionist recovered and complied. "Dr. Shannon," the staff member directed at the transceiver, "I have a young lady here insisting on a TSE." (A/N: To know what this stands for look up procedures for Posthumous Reproduction.) There is a pause. "Raven of the Teen Titans." Another pause. "Very well, I'll direct her." She hung up the phone. "You may go to the fourth floor. Dr. Shannon is in Room 413."
The titans went to the fourth floor as directed to find Dr. Shannon waiting outside the room. "Welcome titans." The specialist sees Beast Boy in Cyborg's arms. "I'm sorry about the loss of your teammate."
Dr. Shannon turns to Raven. "Are you one hundred percent certain about this, Miss Raven?"
"Yes, and we can begin immediately as well. My ovulation is already in progress."
The other titans squirmed hearing her say this.
"Very well, then. Bring him inside."
Cyborg carried Beast Boy into the room as Robin and Starfire followed. Cyborg placed Beast Boy on a nearby hospital bed.
"Miss Raven can stay, but I'll have to ask the rest of you to wait outside."
"Alright then," Robin complied. "Is this really what you want, Raven?"
"Yes," she confirmed. Her friends left her with Beast Boy and the doctor.
Hours later the titans walked out of the hospital with Raven. Nothing was said while they walked to their vehicles. Beast Boy was back in the hands of Cyborg.
As they neared the T-car, Raven stopped. "Wait," she said. The titans stopped and looked at her. After removing her hood, Raven peered down and placed her hands just below her belly area. A bizarre white energy glowed between her palms. Momentarily the energy faded. Raven pulled her hood back up and resumed her walk to the T-car.
"Raven, may I ask what you just did?" asked Starfire.
"I just made Beast Boy a guarantee," Raven replied as she got inside the car.
"Ask me again when this is over."
After Beast Boy was placed back in the car, the titans began their journey back to the tower. Robin's voice broke in on the brief silence through the communicator installed in his helmet. The dialogue was heard by all in the car.
"Raven, I hope you don't mind if I ask why you did this. I mean did you love Beast Boy?"
Even though she knew Robin couldn't see her doing it, Raven shook her head. "No. Certainly not as a boyfriend, anyway," she answered. "People who do what we do, many of their abilities are quite common – flight, super strength, accuracy with projectiles, and energy-generated powers. I believe Beast Boy's powers are one of a kind, and slim-to-none that they can be duplicated.
"I'm hoping I'll bear him an offspring that will inherit his morphing abilities. And just maybe… maybe being a mother will ensure I preserve my humanity."
Nine months had passed and Raven was now in a recovery room. Right next to her bed were four newborns – three boys and one girl, laying in a hospital crib. The girl and one boy were asleep while the other two boys were awake and gurgling. The skin tone was evenly matched between the four, all pale green, though there was the chance that would change as they aged. The boys' hair was too new to yet determine the permanent colors. But the daughter's hair color showed evidence that hers would become fiery red one day. Of the two boys who where awake, one pair of eyes was aquamarine, the other's eyes were blue.
As for any powers… the titans did not doubt Raven's speculation that at least one of them would inherit shape-shifting abilities. They did ponder the idea of how many of the four would inherit their mother's powers. Though she would not tell her friends, Raven knew which of Beast Boy's children have his powers, with a mix of her own.
Raven was relaxed, eyes closed but she was not asleep. Robin, Cyborg, and Starfire quietly entered. Raven opened her eyes and looked over at them.
"Hey Raven," Robin greeted quietly. They all approached her bedside.
"Hi," she returned mildly exhausted.
Starfire was immediately drawn to the crib. "Oh, how adorable," she said softly, gazing at the infants with eyes full of glitter.
Robin, Cyborg, and Raven each smiled at the Tameranean's jovial behavior towards the newborns. They knew she really wanted to hold one, but restrained herself so as not to disturb the quadruplets.
"Unbelievable," Cyborg puffed. "Four babies."
"You have our word that we'll help you raise them," Robin assured her. Cyborg and Starfire agreed.
Starfire remembered something Raven once said. She turned to her friend. "Raven, you told us on the day of their conception that you made Beast Boy a guarantee. Please share with us what it was."
"You're looking at them," answered Raven turning to her children.
"You guaranteed BB that you would have four babies?" Cyborg asked.
"Not exactly. With the spell I used I guaranteed Beast Boy that I would bear him more than one, ensuring I would give him at least one son. The others were left to nature's doing."
"Oh," Robin realized. "All this time I thought it was only about what you said that day; to pass on Beast Boy's shape-changing abilities."
"Friend Raven that is such a wonderful gesture," commended Starfire. She was just too awed by the infants. "Oh, I so do want to have one someday." Starfire finally drew her attention away from them and turned to face the boy wonder.
"Uh Star, why are you looking at me like that?" Robin asked nervously, noticing her expression.
Sometimes a girl just knows. Starfire eyed him a little longer then smiled. "Someday Robin... someday," she said then turned back to the infants.
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