We had been married two years. Two long, surprising years. The Titans had been disbanded for five, or, at least mostly. When we, Robin, Starfire, Cyborg, Beast Boy, and myself had decided that it was time to pursue other endeavors, a new league of teens showed up to carry on the torch. The team had left on remarkably well terms. I had always been pessimistic with the notion that a large argument would result in its end, much like the argument Starfire had feared would cause an alarming future.
For once, I was glad to be proven wrong. Despite going our separate ways, we had for all purposes, remained in close touch. Starfire frequently traveled to and from Tamaran to stay on Earth, and, as the three of us had presumed, to keep an eye on an oblivious Robin. Their relationship, for lack of a better term, had been somewhat of an inside joke between Cyborg, Beast Boy, and myself. Although, I never openly added to the discussions the boys had shared. This was never much a surprise, I didn't like to talk about relationships, and more importantly, it wasn't any of my business.
Still, it had come much to the shock of everyone that I, daughter of darkness, spawn of evil, 'I don't do hugs;' Raven; managed to marry before Starfire. Considering Starfire almost married herself, it was assumed to have been no small feat. And for clarification, I'd like to disprove of this myth, that is wasn't hard to marry at all. Though, it wasn't a race, either. But I can see why there was such doubt behind the event of my marriage. I've always dressed myself in an air of mysteriousness and have stayed at an untouchably height. I still am at that level, at that height; I've never left them, even after my father's death.
Beast Boy and I had never officially become a couple. We had never officially gone ondates. We went out, but they weren't dates. At least, I had never considered them as such. Beast Boy…Garfield had believed otherwise. The nervousness that radiated off of him when he somehow worked the courage up to ask me was like the force of ragging rapids. The very fact he fainted when I agreed was an indication at how surprised he was at my response.
The fact of the matter was, I couldn't refuse him. Not because of how pitiful he would've looked if I declined, but because of another matter entirely. All my life in Azarath I had been kept in seclusion, away from the eyes of people, away from their nearness for both of our safety. After joining the titans, there was one thing that had changed in my life that I knew I could not live without again. That nearness of human warmth; of not being alone.
Beast Boy was safe territory. I had lived with him during our teenage years, had survived his annoying antics, his tendencies to be an irritation, but have honestly enjoyed his company, his advice, and his attempts to get me to smile. Do I love him? No. Perhaps not in the way he loves me, but I do care deeply and strongly for him. The fact he had asked if I could spend the rest of my life with him, how could I not agree? I would never have to be alone ever again. For that, I am content. And for that, he is happy.
However, lately, I cannot help but feel a burden to him. It has been recently that in the middle of the night when I am lying awake in silence, he curls around in our bed to face me, that cat like smirk to his lips, a sleepy daze in his eyes, that he drops hints of wanting children. I tell him a number of different versus laced with scorn and my signature irritation and he usually goesback to sleep without incident. Once he had cornered me in daylight and pointedly asked why I had been dancing around the subject. I had told him I didn't want children…But I can't tell him the truth.
That for all intents and purposes…
I am incapable of bearing children.
I have never been infertile; being a demon and knowing that we are so few, my genetic makeup forbids me the option of being infertile. However, my human blood had allowed for alternatives…
Azarath, having been advanced in many areas of spirituality, was behind in aspects of science and medical care. A colony of pacifists that believed in going down peacefully when ones time was up. There was no desire to develop any advance medical cures, any procedures that involved anesthetic of some sort. They did what seemed the most logical, and hopefully the least painful, and prayed for a well out come.
Imagine if you will, the fear in the temple I was held in when it was discovered my curiosity in the opposite sex. I was merely curious, as most pre-teens became, it was harmless for anyone but myself. I wasn't allowed to show curiosity. Curiosity became desire, and desire became attachment. Attachments grew into emotions. And emotions meant demonic evasions. But this had been far worse. There couldn't be the risk that I could bear any other demonic entities into the world. Something had to be done while I had still been naive and innocent.
And something was done.
I had, after becoming more adept to Earth's history, researched the Holocaust. What had been done to me was not much unlike what some women endured in concentration camps. My suffering, however, was due to lack of medical knowledge; there's was from the twisted nature of their torturers. I can't imagine the feeling of knowing the one administering my procedure was doing it because they took pleasure from it, but I know given the knowledge, Beast Boy would still assume the worst.
That's why I can't tell him I can't carry children because of the way I had been strapped down, fighting, to a table. Why I can't tell him how while one man held a wad of cloth to protect my tongue from clenching teeth, another was removing my robes and many undergarments. I can't tell him how they pried my premature opening wide and poured in the kettle of boiling water. He can't know the pain I felt, the weakness I showed, the regret and pity emitted from both medicine men as they performed their job.
He'll never know that the water scarred the lining of my uterus, whose walls will never be able to soften or stretch to accommodate a babe. And he'll never know that, because of this fact, I'd all ready lost two of his children because they could not grow in an environment that could sustain them.
He'll never, ever know. But he suspects. He knows my answer against children is a lie, to which I know and secretly thank he has come to realize without interrogating me. However, he still sees the sorrow in my eyes, feels it through his animal sense that every time the subject is brought up that I am depressed, that I am afraid.
I am afraid that, because of the one thing I cannot give Garfield, he may leave me. And that very thought terrifies me. It is often what keeps me awake at night when he does roll over to ask me that question.
Thus here I am now, sitting, staring fearfully forward just as he is finally falling back to sleep. And my mind is caged with the thought that the very thing provided for me to ensure I didn't suffer the pain of bearing demonic children may be the one thing that may force me to stay alone the rest of my life, forever distant from Beast Boy and his desires.
It causes me to quake with trepidation.
And I hate myself for it.