Smoke filled the air as the T-car drew closer to the venue. The driver did not hesitate, and sped on towards the factory. The car's other occupants gasped as they discovered that the entire complex had burst into flames. The dancing sparks emitted from the burning building reflected in their horrified eyes.
But Cyborg wasn't one to show fear when in the face of danger. Unbuckling his seatbelt with a grim look, he slid out of the driver's seat and planted his metal feet on the ash-covered ground.
"Stay here! I'll sort this one out!"
"But… Robin!" Starfire protested, looking tearful. But not even the glistening of the tears in her eyes could convince Cyborg to bring her along.
"No can do, Star. Don't worry, Robin's fine."
He began walking away from what was left of the distraught team, their voices somewhat muffled, although Cyborg's enhanced hearing caught Beastboy's "Dude! This is like the fourth time this has happened!" and Raven's monotonous "Seventh, actually. And whining about it isn't helping.". The last thing the half-robot half-man heard from his teammates was the comment (courtesy of Beastboy) "we should put him on a leash…" before the crackling of the flames drowned them out completely.
For once, Cyborg was happy that he was, well… A Cyborg, for he no longer had any blood to fill up his face. The thought of their leader on a leash wasn't exactly a 'g-rated' image. Coughing loudly, he looked warily around for signs of movement.
Soon, a figure emerged from the thick smoke, practically appearing in front of Cyborg.
In his arms was the Titans leader – Robin – bloody, bruised and unconscious. He didn't make a sound or movement, something that did not go unnoticed. Cyborg grit his teeth angrily.
"You promised you wouldn't hurt him!" The villain merely shrugged.
"I couldn't help myself." Cyborg felt his circuits heat up as he glared hatefully at the masked madman. Opening his mouth, he prepared to launch into the speech he had been practicing for weeks.
"Look, I think we should just call the whole thing off. The entire team's getting suspicious, and apparently, you can't even keep your promise!" He accentuated this by gesturing wildly at Robin's limp body.
"What's the matter, Cyborg? Are you suddely feeling guilty?"
"No! I mean… Yes! I mean…" Cyborg brought a metal hand to his head, frowning. "I just… don't want to do this anymore, okay? It's wrong!"
"But that didn't stop you from agreeing to the terms the first time." Anyone could tell that Slade was smirking behind his mask. "I have to say, when you said 'yes', I was very surprised. Very surprised indeed.
"I had always thought of you as the "shield" of the team. I assumed that you would never willingly put a teammate in danger, but as it turns out, I was wrong."
Cyborg could not think of any retort, so he continued to grind his teeth and clench his fists at his sides. Slade looked at him, his single eye sparkling menacingly.
"…And all this? Just so you could spend one night every month alone with your precious leader? Are you really so desperate to have a piece of my little bird…" He gazed down at the boy in his arms to emphasize his point.
"…That you have to resort to making deals with the enemy?" Cyborg was beginning to shake, rage, guilt and desperation washing over him all at once. But he said nothing.
"We made a deal, Cyborg. If I remember correctly, you give me Robin once every month, and I give him back to you confused, helpless and innocent. It is up to you to do whatever you want with him while he is in that state, for he doesn't remember a thing the next morning."
As Slade spoke, Cyborg fought to suppress the memories that were flooding his mind. Memories involving Robin.
"Cy…borg?" The renowned leader of the Titans groaned as he struggled weakly to get up from his bed. His masked eyes wide, he peered up at the man who towered over him and cast his entire body into shadow.
"It… I dunno what's going on… But it hurts, everything hurts…" Cyborg quickly placed his hand on the boy's hair, ruffling it fondly.
"Everything's gonna be okay in the morning, Rob."
"Help me… Help me get rid of the pain… I don't know how… to…" Before he knew it, Robin had fallen forward into his arms, breathing heavily.
"It's okay, Rob.
It's okay…" He quickly wrapped his arms around the smaller
Titan, embracing him. Mentally, he apologized for his actions and
cursed himself for doing such horrible things. Robin let out a contented sigh as he dozed off in Cyborg's arms.
"That's not true," The robotic teen suddenly exclaimed. Slade raised an eyebrow. "He's starting to remember. A few days ago, I put an arm on his shoulder, and he gave me this look… It's like he's starting to wonder why there are blank spaces in his memory. I can feel it… Soon, he's gonna figure it out…"
Looking sadly at the black-haired boy, he shook his head.
"I can't let Robin find out. I just can't." There was silence between the two until Slade proceeded to hand over "his little bird" to the eldest Titan. Nodding, Cyborg took Robin into his own arms, cradling him protectively.
"Deal's over, Slade," he whispered. Slade didn't seem unaffected by this statement.
"We'll see each other again in a month, Cyborg, you and I both know that." Ignoring him, Cyborg began walking back to the T-car, but deep down, he knew what Slade said was true.
He could already picture the events in his mind: That night, he would bring Robin to the hospital wing, and he would stay by his side until he woke up, seeking comfort, and Cyborg would give it to him. In a few weeks, Slade would send him the coordinates of his whereabouts, and Robin would as usual, recklessly go after him, not knowing of the living nightmares he would face. Those nightmares would never be remembered.
"I'm so sorry, Rob," Cyborg thought, squeezing his leader tightly. He saw the relieved faces of the other Titans, and forced out a smile. But a single thought crossed his mind all throughout.
"I'm so sorry."
I hope you enjoyed it, if not, I apologize. I'm pretty new at this. This fic was inspired by RobinRocks' story "Winner Take All". If you like Cy/Rob, you should definitely read it. Cy-fic revolution! Woohoo!