MUST READ AUTHORS NOTE: This is actually a one shot. The next chapter to this story that I will update this coming weekend is also a one-shot. You can either read this one, or wait for the next update, or if you want, you can read them both. This one-shot is based during Aftershock Part One, the rest of the series I am not responsible for.
Inspired by Aftershock part 1, thank you Regrem Eurtaerc for your help with a title. .
Raven cupped her hands to collect the water, and splashed her face. There was a lot of water this deep in the earth, and it was what she had to use to wipe away the crusted mud. She cupped her hands again, and this time, she noticed her reflection. The dirt was gone, but her face reflected anger. Anger, and hate. Her hands snapping into fists, the water splashed out of her grasp, and she brought her fists down on a rock, destroying it on impact, for the simple reasons that she wasn't completely relaxed. She had actually let Terra bring out her anger. What kind of fool was she? She couldn't let her emotions get involved in anything she did.
Tucking a strand of hair behind her face, and taking a deep breath, Raven said, "Okay, just regain control. Try to maintain composure." Briefly taking up position, Raven meditated for a minute, and planted her feet on the ground again. She looked up, and noticed a crack in the Earth above her. If she wished to, she could leave at any time. But her brows furrowed when she remembered her friends. Terra probably tried to annihilate them in a similar fashion. And she clearly couldn't face Terra again on her own, no matter how much she wanted to.
Raven looked at the space around her. The light from above was fairly small, and it didn't go very far into the cavern. She touched the wall where she found the dripping water, and followed that. She was about ten feet out of the light when the darkness finally started to settle in. The entire area around her was moist, dark, and completely silent, except for the occasional drip of leaking water. She was used to this, except for the moisture, but that wasn't hard to get used to.
The smell of the area actually was pleasant, since the scent was of earth's warm soil and fresh water. Biting her lips, Raven stopped for a moment. Closing her eyes, she tried to sense out for energy nearby. She gasped when she felt the massive amount of anger in this person's aura. Luckily, whoever it was happened to be close by.
Keeping her mind on that particular aura, Raven traveled through the darkness, using her link like a maze, following the energy, feeling herself get closer and closer. The walls were like a maze on their own, all the twisting and turning. And some of them continued only a little bit before she found she had to turn back. Just when she felt herself getting dizzy, Raven touched a wall, and it almost sizzled with the power of the energy behind it. And she didn't want to waste her time following more walls when the area she was trying to get to was probably blocked off.
She backed up, and held up her hands. "Azarath Metrion Zinthos!"
The rocks crumbled, making a hole in the stone wall. Raven looked inside, and flinched at the bright light after being in the dark for so long. She looked up, noticing another crack at the surface high above their heads. Her previous estimate had been about fifty feet.
Raven's gaze came back down, and she noticed the shadowed, shaking figure, sitting right in the middle of the light.
"Hello?" Raven asked, trying to find out who it was.
"Go away!" She barely recognized Beast Boy's voice, as there was an unfamiliar crack in it; like he was ready to cry.
"Beast Boy, come on. We've got to go find the others." Raven turned around, ready to leave, but she didn't hear Beast Boy following. She looked back, seeing he hadn't budged. "Beast Boy, let's go!"
He flinched. "I'm not going anywhere."
Raven ducked low to slide into the little alcove Beast Boy had hidden in. "I'm sure staying here the rest of your life would be a good lifestyle."
In a flash, he rose to his feet, flipped around, and swiped his hand in the air. "Shut up Raven!" Raven blinked in surprise. He never told anyone to shut up. "I'm staying down here whether you like it or not. So just go already would ya?"
He sat back down, hugging his knees. She was slightly angered now, and showed it as she stormed up to him. "You weren't the only one she betrayed Beast Boy."
He looked up at her, his eyes pained and furious. It was beyond rare to see Beast Boy mad. How could one person affect him so? A pang of emotion rose within her that she didn't recognize, but she chose to ignore it. "None of you were as close to her as I was! And you didn't even trust her to begin with!"
"And I was right from the start!" Raven said smugly, crossing her arms triumphantly.
He rose to his feet again, and he strangely seemed taller than usual. "And maybe if you weren't so mistrusting then she wouldn't have betrayed us."
Raven's jaw dropped in disbelief. "I can't believe you're naïve enough to believe that! She had those intentions from the start, and we fell for it."
Beast Boy jabbed a finger at her, unexpectedly painfully. "You don't know that Raven! You didn't even know her! Just because you can't like and trust someone, doesn't mean someone else can't!"
Fury boiled up in Raven, and she felt the demon rising inside her. She took deep breaths, and chanted mentally. She angrily looked up at Beast Boy. "I just regained control of my anger. You don't want to be the one to resurface it."
His eyes shined, no sign of intimidation apparent. "I'm not scared of you Raven! You can go ahead and change into your creepy whatever-it-is! I could take on anybody right now!" Her fists clenched, and Raven tried to restrain herself. "I doubt you could take on my anger Beast Boy. And I'm not going to test it, no matter how tempting the idea may be."
"Go ahead! You'd need it to beat me anyway," He dared.
Her eyes widened. He was serious; he really wanted to fight her. It was probably to release all the rage he was feeling. But she was nobody's punching bag. "I refuse to fight a friend, even when he's behaving like a whiny child."
Beast Boy looked more than mad. He was literally shaking, his jaw was clenched as were his fists, and there was absolutely no hint of humor in the usually friendly eyes. "I'll behave however I damn well please! Nobody's asking you to stay here! But I will, and you're not getting me out!"
Tempted to just use her telekinesis to bring him out, Raven brought her hood down. Her tone ringing with superiority, she said, "I could make you leave if I wanted. And it's pointless for you to stay in here. It won't change what she did, and it certainly won't make the situation any better."
"Yeah, but at least I'll be alone. People like you won't be around to remind me how useless and un-funny I am." At that, Beast Boy looked down in despair.
Raven crossed her arms. "You're not useless."
He looked up, and Raven finished, "You're just not funny."
His mouth opening, he bared pointed, jagged teeth. Furious, he turned, and clawed at the wall behind him. "Just shut up Raven! Shut UP! You don't know what it's like to lose someone like her! She was sweet and funny, and she understood me better than anybody."
That emotion came back, and this time, it arose with a vengeance. A red glow began to generate around her eyes. "She just destroyed you and you're defending her!"
Beast Boy turned back to her. "At least she cared."
That was it.
Growling, Raven leapt forward, and tackled Beast Boy. He was flat on his back, trying to be gentle with the angered half-demon. Her eyes were red, but luckily there was still two of them. Her teeth bared, Raven tried to get her hands free, but Beast Boy was holding her wrists in a vise-like grip. "She never cared anything about you! She didn't care about any of us! All she wanted the whole time was to get in, get information, and destroy us. We let her in, We gave her information, and as you can plainly see, WE ARE DESTROYED!"
Beast Boy grunted, and rolled until he was on top of her, while she fought and struggled to regain control. His anger had apparently given him to energy to fight back. "You don't know that's what she wanted! YOU DON'T KNOW ANYTHING! You act like you're all deep and everything! I'm so sick of it!"
Tears rose in Raven's violet eyes, and Beast Boys momentary shock gave her the opportunity to push him to the point where she was on top again.
"You think it's easy being who I am? You know how dangerous I become when my emotions are unleashed! You can just sit here and whine and yell all you want! I know I can't, at least one of use should be able to get upset about the world around them!"
Beast Boy stopped fighting with her, as her tears were starting to fall to the ground beside him. She sniffled a little, but neither of them were aware of the tumbling Earth around them. "You weren't the only one she betrayed Beast Boy."
As she finally broke down, the ground began to rumble. Beast Boy ignored it, and pulled Raven to his level, her hair tickling his long ears. He could feel the dampness from her ears at the back of his head. Who knew that Raven could let go like that? But indeed, there she was, crying without inhibition, collapsing onto him, and her fists were clenching the top shoulders of his uniform. She was shuddering, and he awkwardly stroked her hair as he held her, trying to sooth her. "Ssh…Raven come on…she betrayed everybody." Finally noticing the hellish shake of the Earth around them, Beast Boy tightened his hold. "And I was dumb enough to fall for it."
Raven let out a sob, her voice muffled by her hair. "You aren't dumb."
Reflecting, Beast Boy looked up at the growing light above his head. "I'm just not funny."
Raven lifted her head, and her honest, slightly bloodshot eyes glittered. "No…you are funny Beast Boy."
Struck by disbelief, he gazed up at her. A tiny smile of irony grew on her face. "I just can't laugh."
Touched, he brought her back down to him, and held her tight. He chuckled, a voice filled with not a little irony as well. "It's kinda weird how one person can change so many things about your life."
Raven hugged Beast Boy back for a moment, and in that same moment, the violent tremble of the floor died away. "Yes…it is."
The rumbling began again, and the two were still oblivious. This time not caught up in self-pity or a petty argument. This time, caught up in each other.
There had been hints of romance between them. They had certainly grown closer since he'd been in her mind, and from then things had only gotten progressively better. Terra was only an interruption. Not an object of his affections…not a friend…simply an interruption and a distraction. Beast Boy felt his own tears coming on, and closed his eyes to contain them. About a minute later, he opened his eyes again, and for the first time, really looked at Raven.
Her eyes gleamed, the striking hue putting shame to it's namesake flower of modesty. Her pallid skin glowed, and as he put a hand to it so he could wipe away her tears, he realized that it was smooth and. His hand traveled her face, savoring what he could before she had the chance to stop him. Finally, he worked his fingers through her hair, amazingly lacking in tangles, and was in fact smooth as silk. Never before had he felt so strange.
All of his senses were coming to life. He could hear the crumbling around him, of the slightest rock as it hit; he could see all the lashes over Raven's eyes; he could smell the fresh mint on her breath. And as their mouths met, he could taste it as well. Even after the fineness of her skin, he hadn't known softness until now. Her lips felt like two of the fluffiest pillows. Giddy on the feel, he craned his neck up to kiss her deeper.
Raven didn't know why she was doing what she was doing. She did know that she liked it. She had never done this before, and she was sure it showed. But Beast Boy was being incredibly gentle, sweeping his lips over hers before delving into her mouth. The invasion was new to her, as was this whole situation, but she found that she didn't entirely mind it. In fact, she couldn't remember the last time she had felt this good. Her heart was soaring, and her mind was a jumbled mass.
Even though she was resting on top of Beast Boy, Raven felt as light as a feather. It wasn't ecstasy, but more like…delightful content. His arms were sliding up and down her back, making her shudder, and attempt to snuggle deeper into his arms. Trying to be as confident as he appeared to be, Raven's tongue gently stroked into Beast Boy's mouth, as if to return the favor.
Something of a peace settled over Raven. She could no longer hear the tumbling of the rocks and couldn't feel the tremors of the Earth. The only thing she felt was the entanglement of their bodies. There wasn't Terra, there weren't the other Titans. It was just her and Beast Boy.
All too soon, he pulled away and Raven opened her eyes. His eyes were glazed over and low-lidded. He blinked, and looked around. "The earthquake stopped," Beast Boy noted.
Raven blushed a little. "I guess you calmed me down."
Grinning, Beast Boy let go of Raven, and stacked his hands behind his head, and she could feel his feet cross underneath her legs. "I've been known to have that affect." Raven dropped her fist on his chest, and he laughed. She smiled a little as he playfully kissed her fingers. "Wow, I really am funny?"
Raven lay her head on his chest, listening to the sound of his heart. "I said you were."
His hand found its way into her hair again. "Thanks Raven."
Looking up at him again, her smile widened. "Thank you."
Beast Boy smiled back before raising his eyes to the light again. "I guess we should find the others huh?"
Raven sighed in disappointment. "Probably."
With a strength she didn't expect, he tenderly lifted her up. Once she reached her feet, her hand extended to help him up. Taking a deep breath, they embraced again, though this time it was short-lived. After a quick kiss, Raven looked down again. Beast Boy tilted his head in an attempt to see her eyes. "What's wrong?"
Licking her lips, Raven rose her face to his. "Terra."
His expression unwavering, he shrugged. "What about Terra?"
Confused at his passive answer, Raven said, "What about what happened?" Never before had it really sunk in how badly the whole thing must have affected Beast Boy. They were indeed very close. That blasted emotion rose again, and this time, she thought she identified it: Jealousy. Pure jealousy over a relationship that clearly meant nothing to him. Then why did she feel the way she did?
His expression hardened only slightly. "Nothing. She betrayed us. We gave her all the chances she deserved, and she wasted them. She doesn't care about us, so we won't care about her."
Raven blinked. He sounded just like her when they had first learned of Terra's treachery. Uncaring and all business. "Are you sure you can get over it just like that?"
"No," he deadpanned. "But I know I'll feel better if I can give her a piece of my mind."
Raven nodded in agreement. She had a few things to say to Terra as well. If they fought Terra, then they could show Terra that she wasn't needed. They had each other.
Beast Boy backed up, and through wordless understanding, took her hand, and together they left, ready to find their friends.
And for once and for all, eliminate a certain distraction.
Kissing Contest will be uploaded this coming weekend. Beast Boy enters a kissing contest to win a moped. Through a twist of fate, Raven finds herself helping him practice.