A/N: Oh yes. After ages of devouring RK fanfiction, I've published a fic, and it's a TT one. Wtf. Wtf indeed. Anyways, yes, focused around Kid Flash and Jinx, it is winter, four days after Lightspeed and still in Jump City,riddled with plot holes already, I will solve the more gaping ones (besides the season- winter it is, regardless of all logic) when I have a chance to talk about them. Will do best to keep characters IC, haven't read the comics but will do a bit of research within reason (and listen to suggestions from the knowledgeable) and will address the non-addressed issue of secret identities/school and such (which in the animated series is basically "What secret identities?"), will address the issue of Jinx NOT just automatically going goodie in a heartbeat because OMG dashing Kid Flash and NOT just having no attachment to the rest of the HIVE five, will address Titans Together, am filled with much thanks to Ri-Ri for beta help and making me work. There, I think I've covered everything I want to for now. Onward!
Disclaimer: I don't own Teen Titans or the characters, or really anything I mention off-hand that's already owned here. Of course I could still be sued, but last I checked, swearing, rude gestures and small carved gnomes don't pay off debts. That's all you'll get from me, really not worth the effort.
The air in Jump City would be fine, Jinx reflected, if it wasn't for this damn wind.
And she'd know, considering that she'd been dealing with it nearly nonstop for the last four days. Nonstop nearly her whole life, come to think of it. Cold and biting, it swirled around her in snowy eddies, clawed at the edges of her outfit, froze the ends of her hair, and it was being a general pain in the-
"Oh, I'm sorry," murmured a passing businesswoman who had bumped shoulders with her. It was mechanical and thrown over the woman's shoulder as she hurried away. Jinx didn't blame her and wondered at the fact that she'd apologized at all. People in the city didn't exactly stop to say hello, especially when the sun was quickly disappearing behind the sharp outline of skyscrapers, and the only source of light was swiftly becoming the cold glow of liquor stores that stayed open late and the lifeless, flickering luminescence of the streetlamps that seemed to leech her surroundings of their color.
It was this dreary, dangerous city night mood that forced Jinx to quicken her pace and walk with her shoulders rolled back, her odd slit eyes and the reputation she'd gained warning away any of the low-life muggers that were looking for a nice vulnerable victim with wide eyes and a fat wallet. One of her hands fisted on the strap of the messenger bag, filled with the few basic necessities she cared about enough to keep, swinging at her side. Even though she'd very much like to clutch her rather inadequate attire to her chest and hunch her shoulders to contain what warmth she had left, she couldn't. And besides… She might crush the stupid rose.
Oh well, huddling against the cold was an effort in futility; anyways-She'd already gotten snow in her boots. How had she managed to get snow in her boots? They were quite high, warm boots, normally. Comfy, even. She hadn't tripped over anything as she was prone to doing when she didn't keep her eyes on the bad luck at her fingertips. And yet, there was snow. In her boots. There was not supposed to be snow in her boots because snow was cold and not at all fun to have in one's boots. As Jinx tried to distract herself from this frustrating train of thought, an even bigger one was taunting her from the corner of her eye, red and beautiful and demanding her attention.
Which brought her back to the whole reason she had disappeared, without fanfare, down a dark alley filled with dirty trashcans and the echoing of her footsteps. The reason she'd finally left the HIVE five to fend for themselves. The reason why she was cold and suppressing her shivers while walking down the streets of Jump City with snow in her boots, agh! Cold. Damn cold. Damn boots. Damn snow. Damn Kid Flash and his damn stalker roses.
Of course, it wasn't the roses that were stalking her, but the idiot who was leaving them. When she'd first left she hadn't expected to see another hint of the fiery-headed twit. Which, she had not thought at all or in any way, was a shame, since she knew the rose would probably meet some sort of unfortunate end, if she was carrying it around. But the second it had started to wilt she had found another one on a snowy park bench with a ridiculous smiley face drawn into the snow like the stupid speedster just couldn't resist (Kid Flash, in fact, couldn't. He'd sensed that she needed thinking time, but couldn't help keeping an eye on her and leaving her roses on park benches. And the white snow, it had called to him!). And another one the next day, tied to a tree of all things (He nearly impaled himself on a fire hydrant after he slipped on an icy patch of tree bark). She'd have liked to see him attempt to set that up. Not that she wanted to see him, or anything. At all. Nope. Well, to be honest, maybe a bit, if only to mock him. But, as with many other things she'd like to do, she couldn't.
What she needed was time to wander and think, and then to organize her thoughts and re-organize them, and re-file them and skim through them again and alphabetize them, and hope that she got something out of the mess. She'd never had to do much soul-searching before this, so she didn't blame herself much for having a bit of trouble. After all, her life had always been straightforward, if not always enjoyable. Earn respect, get to the top, push a few people down and climb over them if necessary. But then that speedster had just raced in and prodded at her motives and questioned her position and alternatively put her at ease and made her stand on edge with his jokes and his words and his roses, and now nothing was certain anymore (save the fact that Jump City was cold at night- that much she'd figured out). So she walked and pondered.
Heroism. If she became a hero, what would that make her? A villain turned hero, stupid, muttered a resentful little voice in the back of her head. It was the same voice of reason that told her not to over-think things, but she couldn't help it. This was the reason why she had trouble with true/false answers, darn it! The world was not just true or false, even if everyone else (or at least her old teachers back at the HIVE academy) thought it was. Kid Flash certainly seemed to. She wouldn't be surprised if he saw everything in black and white, like a dog. She snorted softly to herself. He certainly looked like one, with those big, blue eyes and that beseeching stare- Okay, Jinx, we're trying to NOT think about him, 'kay now? But she was in a gray area right now, and in a second she was going to end up in some absurd color, like purple. She was asking for it, anyways, seeing as she was going to his place of dwelling now.
She didn't really care at the moment, though. It was cold and Kid Flash was out helping the city- She knew, she'd heard it on a radio in a storefront. It irked her how easily his name caught her attention, but right now she was more irked by the wind. A warm place to stay was always welcome (it was better than sleeping in drafty semi-abandoned warehouses), and he'd left her the address with that last rose, hadn't he? So she'd just break in and savor his surprise when he walked in to discover her lounging on his couch or raiding his fridge. For once she'd be able to sit back and be the blasé one while he stuttered and wondered at the fact that she'd suddenly showed up at his apartment.
Even though most of her thoughts were about how important it was to get away from him, she figured he'd be out most of the time doing his do-gooder thing. The rare glimpse of him wouldn't affect her, right? She hoped so. He had set off her bout of walking and thinking, but she didn't want him to be the reason she became a hero, if she even tried. After all, if all it took to make her convert sides was the odd good-looking (not that Jinx thought Kid Flash was good-looking. At all. Of course not, that's absurd…) male to saunter up and offer a few words, how dedicated was she, really? Although she was a villain, she'd always prided herself on being extremely loyal if she found anyone worthy of her loyalty, (which, obviously, she hadn't… trusting people wasn't so easy with her lifestyle and just look at the kind of disappointment Madam Rouge turned out to be…) and being a girl of action who was dedicated to her cause, and who wouldn't be swayed by petty things. Hypothetically, if she were to dedicate herself to the do-gooder cause… how pure would her motives be? Could she really dedicate herself to such a thing? (Argh, that was such a do-gooder concern, darn it!) If she tried the whole hero gig because of shallow reasons, wouldn't she be just as easily swayed back to her life of petty robberies and dreams of making it big?
Well, hopefully she wouldn't have to worry about that. Kid Flash had certainly been the reason she'd turned around and started wandering in the opposite direction, but she was pretty sure that there had always been something there that wasn't all that enamored with villainy. Respect, yes. Action, yes. But not villainy in particular. Not lately, at least… The rush she felt was fading, had been fading from the lack of skill it took to commit the average petty crime. Stress, the desire to attempt something bigger and get her teammates to comply had wound her up tightly, made her retreat even further from what she enjoyed until even the dense HIVE five was making remarks regarding how she never had any fun anymore. These remarks usually escalated fights in which she'd get more and more frustrated: THEY were the ones who ONLY cared about mucking about and were content with those pathetic things that could barely be called crimes. It wasn't about just freedom anymore, about knowing and reaching for what she wanted. She was aiming for the biggest goal she had, now- all the little wants had to be ignored or she'd never get anywhere. No, what started out as a rush became a means to an end. Her art was reduced to a crude way to live.
But… what if she wasn't that enamored with heroism, either? She certainly wasn't enamored with that speedy moron. He was just a pain who happened to have an apartment she was going to stay at. Who just happened to show her another path to contrast with the one she'd always known. So. The paths were there. Now all she had to do was stop walking around in circles in the snow and choose one.
…Or maybe she'd just think about it more over some hot cocoa in a nice, warm apartment. Or, you know, not do the whole making-hard-decisions thing. Maybe she'd watch TV. Yes, that sounded nice. After all, she had already reached his apartment complex, and the snow in her boots was melting.
Due to her purposeful stride, one that she'd perfected and used to get into many places where she wasn't supposed to be, she simply walked right in, thanking the nice-looking young gentleman who held the door open for her. Immediately she broke into a fit of furious silent swears. She wasn't supposed to thank people while she was in a gray area, darn it…! Or was she? Ahh, she needed cocoa and mind-numbing TV.
She'd already memorized his apartment number, and chose the stairs over the elevator. She was exhausted, but not enough to risk being kicked out by riding in an elevator with someone who wouldn't recognize her, except maybe as a villainess, which would be disastrous. When Jinx finally reached his door, she shot a small burst of pink energy at the lock.
"Oops… Faulty lock, Kid Flash, what bad luck. Tsk tsk…" she said to herself, chuckling. Walking in and locking the door behind her, she surveyed the place… Not bad. It was moderately spacious with a nice living room (complete with a nice TV, her mind added), a small kitchen that connected to the living room with a little dining-room-ish area in between, a bathroom (complete with tub, her mind added, growing happier by the second), and what she assumed was Kid Flash's bedroom. The place wasn't immaculate- after all, a guy lived here- but it was her kind of messy, not a HIVE five bathroom disgusting kind of messy. It was… Inviting? Lived-in. Homey. Oh, yes, this would certainly do- just for a temporary stay, of course, she thought contentedly. Now, for that hot cocoa…
And now a word from our sponsor- I mean editor. Read it. Read it, or I will cut you. (Just joking, of course, valued reader. –hugs, while placing a tracer-) ;) Also, read and review her stories (search for Under the Influence under Rurouni Kenshin). RK goodness. She will flip out and I get to hear a HappyOMGGotAReview!Ri-Ri for a while instead of a SurlyDangerousLethal!Ri-Ri. ;D
E/N - Whoo! My turn to corrupt Re-Ane's fics. (shiftyeyes) Shhhh… This is Re-Ane's first fic. Y'hear me? FIRST. And even though I hardly got any reviews on my first fic (shameless plug), I expect at least 3 here, got it? Though Re-Ane didn't use my suggestion for the name of the hedgehog (Mildred) (A/N: Just relax readers, you'll know soon enough), I will still be a loyal friend and bug all of you, the readers, to do your civic duty and review. Reviewing it preferable to jury duty, right? It's quick, painless, and can be submitted anonymously so nobody knows who you are. If all you're doing it writing two little words and in return you get a chapter update, in the end, aren't you getting the better end of the deal?
End A/N (Yes I get another one for I am the author bwa ha ha ha): Alright, I'm going to try to keep this on a weekly update schedule. Any sooner and I wouldn't meet the deadline, become discouraged and go into hiding as a monk in Tibet. Next chapter includes children's television, various girly bath products, and angry pajamas, not necessarily in that order. Beware.
Also, regarding reviews. It's okay. I'm not going to try to get you to review. We all know it's "just two buttons." I'm lazy and don't review sometimes (especially when anonymous reviews are disabled- I'm too lazy to log in), too. Oh, I am a sinner. But I shall not be a hypocrite. I do not expect reviews- if you decide to leave a review I commend you for your valiant effort. Really, obviously Ri-Ri cares about this more than I do- Review hers. And, until next time, Ciao readers!