Unfortunately, all desire to continue my other fanfic has evaporated. Sorry, but I'm afraid that if I continue, the quality will curl into a ball, shriver up, and die.
And when quality dies, it smells really, really bad. You don't want quality to smell bad, do you?
Didn't think so.
Eventually, this is how most of my fanfics turn out, so I guess I'll probably just settle for either little ficlets, like this one, or very very short fanfictions that are only a few chapters long.
Disclaimer: I don't own Teen Titans, if I said I did the network and comic people would probably tear open my stomach and rip--
You get the idea.
Few people were awake in Titans Tower this early in the morning, and Beast Boy was one of them.
The sun had barely awoken before the changeling had, and it still crept slowly into its proper place in the pale blue, mildly violet-frosted sky, spewing a bright light into the operations room of the Tower. It was to this light that Beast Boy found himself in the kitchen, whistling a rather peppy tune that he had heard on the radio the other day. Bobbing his head slightly to his own music, the shapeshifter shoved his spatula beneath a still-moist, soy-drenched pancake, flipping it with the quick hand of someone who had done so many times before.
The only other guest in the room was Raven. She had woken up at least half an hour before her green companion, when the sun had just barely begun to peek over the mountains along the horizon. Her pallid features were hidden behind the ancient pages of one of her many books, her dark eyes quickly scanning her current page before her thin fingers painstakingly turned the page at the corner, so as not to rip the delicate paper.
From his position in the kitchen, Beast Boy looked over at his friend, the grin on his face surprisingly bright for someone who had woken up so early. Even if Raven didn't like to talk to him very much, and when she did it was usually a sarcastic retort or a taunt, he still enjoyed her company for a reason he really could not figure out. There was just something about her presence that made the air around him calming; he didn't get all wired and energetic around her like he did with the other Titans, bouncing around and acting like an idiot for a bit of attention.
Turning his attention back to breakfast, Beast Boy flipped a few more pancakes, then stepped back to let them cook, looking back at his friend.
"Hey, breakfast's almost done. Do you want some?"
He almost winced at the way his voice shattered the silence that had existed moments before, after his humming had ceased. Even if he wasn't much for quiet, it was still... nice, he supposed.
Raven, however, did not make any move to respond for several moments, drinking in the last few sentences of her book before she answered him.
Beast Boy frowned as he set his spatula down, folding his surprisingly muscular arms across his chest. He hated it when she did this. How could one word from her completely ruin his good mood? That, he supposed, was just another one of her weird abilities that he had to deal with.
"'Oh, thanks, Beast Boy, that's really nice of you to offer, but I'm good.'"
Despite mentally slapping himself, the changeling couldn't help but spout off with the high-pitched joke of what Raven's response could have been. He winced slightly as the dark-haired girl turned, her deep azure eyes narrowed.
Sometimes, she could make those eyes scarier than the four crimson ones that always appeared when she lost control of her temper.
"'Sure, Raven. I'll go launch myself out of the nearest window and stop bothering you.'"
Her dry monotone, for some reason, made him grin as he looked back at the griddle, reaching for his spatula and expertly flipping the meal onto a plate he had previously placed near the appliance.
"Are you sure you don't want any? I put extra soy."
Beast Boy waggled his eyebrows, as though his words made the pancakes sound absolutely irresistable. Hey, it was good stuff, no matter how much Cyborg complained about it. Raven rolled her eyes as she returned her gaze back to her tome, her eyes darting around the page in an attempt to find where she had left off.
"Extra soy? Gosh, Beast Boy, you should have mentioned that sooner; I love soy."
The pointy-eared Titan frowned as he seperated some of the pancakes onto another plate, drenching them in soy margarine and maple syrup.
"You could have just said 'no thanks,' you know."
"No you didn't, you just said 'no'!"
"That's the same thing."
Letting out a low growl of frustration, Beast Boy turned off the griddle, unplugging it from the outlet in the wall. What was her problem? Would it kill her to be polite? Once again, like many times before, he could feel resentment towards his female friend bubble up inside him, just like when she refused to laugh at his jokes or rolled her eyes at his many attempts to get her to smile.
"It's not the same thing," Beast Boy snapped, surprising himself. "It wouldn't kill you to try to be polite, you know. I'm trying to be nice, the least you could do is try to do the same."
Raven scowled from behind the sheild of her book, which she set down on the coffee table in front of her, turning slightly so that she could see her friend.
"I'll make you a deal. I'll try to be nice if you stop bothering me."
Beast Boy glared at her as he stabbed one of his pancakes with his fork, perhaps a bit too forcefully than he really needed to. Him? Bother her? I didn't do anything! he mentally growled. She's the one who got all bitchified just because I asked her if she wanted some food. Trying not to giggle at his new variation of the four-letter word, Beast Boy jammed the piece of his breakfast into his mouth, chewing and swallowing as he removed his fork and pointed it at her.
"How am I bothering you? I've been pretty quiet all morning, and when I offer you breakfast, you snap at me!"
"A, 'pretty quiet' for you is actually pretty loud for most people. B, I didn't snap. I just said no. Did you honestly expect me to jump up and say 'Sure, Beast Boy, I would love some of your weird soycakes!'?"
Raven arched an eyebrow as she watched her friend mutilate his breakfast with the fork he currently held in his gloved hand, his frown deepening. Go figure, Beast Boy thought. She tries to make me look bad. I didn't do anything wrong!
"You always do this. I always try to be nice to you, and you always twist it around and make it look like I'm being some sort of rude, braindead idiot. I dunno why I even bother."
Shoving another bite of pancake into his mouth, the green-haired boy shook his head.
"I dunno why I put up with you."
At this, Raven rolled her eyes, picking up her book before she floated towards the door. Beast Boy glanced over at her, blinking with surprise at the expression that flashed across her ashen face milliseconds before her royal blue hood was pulled up over her violet-capped head. It was a mix of... well, in all honesty, he couldn't really think of what it was a mix of. Perhaps, defeat? Embarassment? Shame, even?
A little bit of self-loathing.
And even... pain?
She said something, but so quietly that Beast Boy couldn't even hear it; the only way he knew she had even spoken was by the minute movement of her lips that formed only three words.
"Neither do I."
"Can you believe her?"
Beast Boy was still attempting to rid himself of the distasteful feeling that had grown inside of him since earlier that morning, just before Raven had left the room. He didn't completely understand what her last words had meant; he barely even partially understood. 'Neither do I'? Neither did she what? Not know why he put up with her? It was stupid, and it confused Beast Boy to the point of ridding him of what little sanity he had left.
So, he complained. He had the tendency to do that when things bothered him.
Cyborg glanced over at him, tearing his gaze away from the gigantic television in front of them.
"I guess so. The news is supposed to be factual, right?"
Beast Boy blinked once, glancing over at the female news anchor who was reporting about a fire. Groaning, he tilted his head back, resting it against the sofa.
"No, not her, I meant Raven."
Cyborg arched an eyebrow before reaching forward to remove the television remote from the coffee table.
"What am I supposed to be believing or not believing about Raven?"
The changeling flung his arms out, his emerald eyes narrowed.
"Her rudeness, her sarcasm, her insults, her attitude, everything! She got mad at me and said I was bothering her for asking if she wanted some stupid pancakes for breakfast! I was trying to be nice!"
He drew in a deep breath, then let out a frustrated sigh. Cyborg sighed as well, shaking his head.
"Man, you two are crazy. I don't get why you both are always at each other; both of you get along fine with everyone else, but it's almost as if as soon as you two are in the same room you guys go on attack mode."
Beast Boy grabbed a throw pillow, wrapping his arms around it, his eyes glued to the television in a pathetic attempt to distract himself. In the few moments of silence that followed Cyborg's words, the shapeshifter glanced over at his friend, realizing that the metal man was smirking.
Cyborg snickered as he turned back to the television, shaking his head again.
Beast Boy set the pillow down, frowning slightly. Cyborg grinned and shrugged a little.
"Well, you know what people say. When two people fight a lot, it means they reeeeaaaally love each other."
The partially mechanical Titan burst out laughing as his green companion's face did a rather rapid color change from olive to crimson. Beast Boy gulped, one hand curling into a fist and the other jabbing a finger at Cyborg.
"I do not-- I mean, we're not-- I, we, she-- I don't love her! I don't even like her! She's rude and mean and every time I try to do something nice for her, she just gets mad at me! We the hell do we even put up with her? All she's ever done is make us miserable and caused more trouble, what with that whole Trigon... thing..."
Beast Boy had no idea where the words came from, he didn't even really mean them, but they stopped suddenly, trailing off as he realized Cyborg was staring at the door. He didn't even have to look to know who was standing there; he certainly didn't want to. For some reason, though, he did anyway.
For the second time that morning, he wasn't sure how to label Raven's expression. It was just a mix of anger and hurt and confusion, he supposed.
Call it cliche, but Beast Boy really felt like he had kicked a puppy. And coming from an animal lover like him, that was really saying something.
"Um... how long have you been standing there?"
His quiet, raspy voice broke the silence as he shrunk down, hunching his shoulders and wishing he could disappear, just crawl under the sofa and hide from Raven's gaze.
Was that a slight shake to her voice that Beast Boy detected? He dropped his gaze for a moment, glancing back up at his fellow Titan as she turned, her cloak whirling out behind her, and quickly exited the room, pulling her hood up over her head as she did so. Beast Boy sighed, reaching up to scratch behind his ear, feeling Cyborg's glare burning into him.
"Dude, you should probably apologize."
For once, Beast Boy didn't even try to argue with him and get out of it.
The olive-skinned Titan stood outside the door, staring up at the label that clearly displayed who had recently locked herself behind said door. He sighed, staring at the floor.
"Raven, I know you're in there. Can you just open the door? Please?"
When no response came, Beast Boy sighed again, leaning his back against the wall next to the door.
"Okay, fine. I know you can hear me, so at least listen."
Slinking down, Beast Boy sat on the floor, tucking his knees up to his chest and resting his forearms across them, tilting his had back against the wall. He blew out a breath of air through his lips, making a noise similar to the one a horse might make.
"Look... I'm sorry. I didn't mean any of that, I swear. I really do like you. You're my friend, even if we happen to rip each other's hands off every now and then. Er, figuratively, I mean. But you already knew that... ugh."
He shook his head, reaching up with one hand to massage his forehead, trying to collect the many thoughts buzzing around in his head.
"I know that whole Trigon ordeal wasn't your fault. You've never made us miserable; if anything, you've kept us going when things got really tough. Whenever things are bad, you're the only one who every thinks clearly. I mean, without you, the Titans just wouldn't be the Titans. Man, we would suck."
Beast Boy grinned a little, shaking his head and dropping his arm back down across his knees as he tried to imagine what the Teen Titans would be like with the absence of cool, calm, collected Raven, always there to straighten them out, to gently but bluntly (if there was such a thing) keep them in line. She didn't sugarcoat things; she told them exactly as they were, how they were, why they were. Somehow, even with her pessimistic attitude, she kept them all going. He had never realized it, but Raven was practically everybody's best friend, without even trying to be.
He loved her. He really did. Not in a romantic sense, but she meant a lot to him. Without Raven... the world just wouldn't seem as bright.
It was amazing how someone so dark could light everything up.
"I'm... I'm really sorry I said that stuff. I promise, I didn't mean any of it."
He jumped slightly with surprise as the door slid open with a soft hiss, looking up to see Raven's pale face, framed by her orchid hair. She watched him silently for a moment, her features barren of any form of emotion whatsoever, before a barely visible smile tugged at the corner of her mouth.
"Hey, Beast Boy?"
Beast Boy stood up, reaching up to scratch the back of his head, ruffling his spiked emerald hair. Don't kill me... don't kill me... don't get mad at me... don't get mad at me...
"Are there any pancakes left?"