Chapter 11: Impossible Odds
"Titans Go!" Robin yelled. Their situation was grave. They were drastically outnumbered, but there wasn't anything they could do except try.
Raven did not hesitate to attack. She sent daggers of energy flying toward offenders at top speeds, and bolts of power left her hands and ripped through her enemies before she barely had time to process what was happening. But no matter how many villains she took down, more and more just kept coming.
Although it was not the first time the Teen Titans had been in this type of situation, deep down inside, Raven's intuition told her that this fight was unlike any of the others. Something bad was going to happen.
A sudden cracking noise resonated through the building. The damage to the walls and several support beams caused the aging structure to become unstable. Directly above where Raven was standing, the ceiling began to cave.
A great shadow fell upon her as the ceiling collapsed. In this split second of warning, Raven's mind went blank as she was caught off guard by the sudden peril. She was not aware that she had closed her eyes until seconds after she heard the enormous crash. She stayed still, her mind in darkness as she waited for the pain to hit her. When it did not, she slowly opened her eyes.
Raven was surprised to see that she was no longer standing in the spot she had been just seconds earlier. Now she was sitting, leaned up against a wall in the very corner of the room. She had been pulled there by someone who now knelt protectively over her.
Staring face to face with Beast Boy, Raven was at a loss.
"Are you ok?" he asked immediately. His green eyes looked at her anxiously and Raven became aware of how close they were at that moment. He was kneeling beside her, his body leaning over her slightly so that she would be protected. One of his arms was considerately positioned behind her head, while his other hand held her around the waist.
Raven nodded, searching for words. "What are you doing here?" She finally managed.
Beast Boy smiled. "I couldn't just let you guys fight this alone," he said.
Carefully, he helped Raven up, and for a second the two of them stood in the corner. Raven looked at the large pieces of cement, metal ceiling tile and the iron beams that they had so narrowly avoided. Looking beside her, she noticed that Beast Boy's shoulders and back were covered in dust and there were bits of sheet rock in his hair. His arm was still around her.
"You ready?" He asked Raven and she nodded. Moving out of the corner Beast Boy and Raven rejoined the fight.
Beast Boy was tired. Even the adrenaline pumping through his veins was not enough to sustain him for much longer.
It had been five minutes since he had gotten to the scene. He was fighting with all of his strength and he knew that soon he was going to be in trouble. He didn't remember how long it had been since he had slept or eaten.
A rhinoceros plowed through a group of robots. An oversized grizzly wrestled with one and then clawed another two to destruction. A T-rex bent down to avoid the ceiling and chomped a mouthful of its opponents in half. But no matter how many robots fell, more just moved into place.
Beast Boy recalled how he had rushed to get here, the peregrine falcon cutting through the sky at top speed. He hadn't even bothered to try and contact Robin's communicator, maybe he should have, but at the moment all he was thinking was that they would be needing his help, and fast.
And it was a good thing he had arrived when he did. As a tiger, bursting into the building, he had already taken down several robots before any of his friends had even noticed he was there. Luckily he recognized the danger that Raven was in before the ceiling collapsed. If he hadn't looked over exactly when he did…
He was just glad she was ok.
Now in his peripheral vision, Beast Boy could see his friends beginning to grow tired too. He had noticed the broken pieces of Robin's Bo staff lying inopportunely on the floor. He also felt certain that Robin had used up every weapon on his belt and was now limited to just hand to hand combat. From above he could hear Starfire's frustrated shouts, and to his right he saw Cyborg get punched from behind, lose his balance and then start firing his sonic cannon from the floor.
At this rate, the titans were not bound to have a very strong victory. But what else could they do to gain the upper hand?
As Beast Boy fought, a sudden memory came to mind. It had happened earlier that day, but it felt like years ago now.
He had been fighting these same robots earlier that day. When the Titans had arrived on the city streets to answer the emergency alarm, they had been shocked to find Slade's robots terrorizing the city. Slade, after all, was dead. Beast Boy's mind had still been holding onto those traces of memory from just moments before that. The traces were of Raven and how she got hurt during combat practice. How she fell out of the sky and into his arms.
Fast forwarding just a few minutes. It had happened just before he heard Terra's scream. Of course, it hadn't been Terra but a different young girl that had fallen victim to a new and deranged villain…But something had happened just before that, and he had been so distracted at the time that he hadn't given it much thought. What was it?
He had been fighting the robots when a blast of energy had just narrowly missed him. It had hit the transformer of a telephone pole behind him and after the transformer exploded in an array of sparks, he dove out of the way to avoid the falling telephone pole… and when he got up, he was alone.
Before the telephone pole fell, he was still fighting with a couple of robots. After it fell, he was alone; all of them had been defeated. It had not been Beast Boy that had defeated them of course, but the blast to the transformer. It was the termination of electricity that must have done it.
Beast Boy knew that he was on to something. Slade was gone, so the only way the robots could still be in operation would be if they were programmed to keep fighting.
Based on what he remembered from earlier, it was clear now that Slade's remote control over the robots depended on the use of some sort of external electricity source. Even after his death, Slade wasn't prepared to give up. He had planned one last trap for the Teen Titans. But Beast Boy wasn't going to let him win.
Now, as he continued to take down his opponents, Beast Boy scanned his surroundings. On the far side of the room a large green box sat in the corner, fastened to the wall. On the outside it read, 'Caution: High Voltage' and it illustrated this with a bright yellow triangle and a lightning bolt. Beast Boy considered the warning. It was a risky move, but he knew it was worth a shot.
The electrical box couldn't have been located in a worse place. In order to get to it Beast Boy would have to pass through the open target range of at least two dozen hostile robots.
Sending one powerful punch into a robot that stood in his way, Beast Boy jumped into action. Deciding to take down as many enemies as he could in the process, Beast Boy transformed into a triceratops and began bounding towards his target, plowing through robots and sending them sprawling in all directions.
He was well on his way to reaching his target when he heard a rumbling noise that he hadn't expected. It seemed as though, seconds earlier, a robot must have become wary of his plan because several bolts of energy had hit the precarious ceiling above. The majority of the roof's structure remained intact, but was still unstable. The blasts managed to hit one of the iron beams, which quickly fell to the ground along with several sheets of tin and cement that crumbled down with it.
Beast Boy quickly transformed into an agile cheetah and narrowly avoided the crash of debris that landed directly in front of him. He hopped right over the iron beam, cleared the wreckage and continued on his way. While this was happening, he became slightly aware that he was attracting the attention of the other Titans who seemed to witness another ceiling collapse, and were now curious why Beast Boy was putting himself in such a vulnerable position.
"Beast Boy! Get out of there!" He heard Robin shout, and Beast Boy was surprised to hear concern in the leader's voice, instead of just authority.
He had almost run the full diagonal length of the room. Beast Boy was just meters away when it happened.
The sequence of events that followed played out as if in slow motion. A robot stepped in front of him. Beast Boy had been moving so fast that wasn't even sure which direction the enemy had come from, and now with the momentum he had built up, stopping was next to impossible. And before he could react, the robot shot from a dangerously close range.
Beast Boy could feel the pain in his chest almost instantly. He had practically run into the blast and he felt it rip through the soft layer of fur and burn his insides.
However, his momentum did not slow. Changing into a great horned ram, Beast Boy jumped right over his attacker, landed once and then charged head-on into the electrical box. The outer metal covering of the box buckled and crushed the inside circuits. Sparks flew. Beast Boy could feel a small surge of electricity course through his body, but it was not as bad as he had expected.
Now in his human form, Beast Boy stood in front of the sparking transformer. He watched the room that was still filled with animated robots and waited for a second to see if his idea had worked. And for that one second, he wasn't sure if it was going to or not.
And then, in sheer disbelief, he realized it wasn't. His plan had failed.
Weak and despondent, Beast Boy remained still. He barely even noticed the two robots that moved towards him. They aimed their weapons, intent on finishing him off.
It was the Raven's voice resounding in his direction and it shook him out of his daze. Dark black energy enveloped the two robots and reduced them to sheer dust. But one of them had already fired.
Beast Boy got his mind together just in time to duck down and narrowly avoid a particularly powerful blast of energy. Missing its intended target, the blast hit the mangled electrical transformer behind Beast Boy, properly destroying it in a small explosion that was accompanied by yet another shower of sparks.
Suddenly, the remote control system designed by Slade was disrupted by the termination of its surrounding energy source. One by one robots lost control and fell to the ground as inanimate objects. Overhead, the few dim light fixtures that remained intact shut off, as did the outside floodlights that had lit the courtyard. The only light that now entered the room was moonlight that flooded in through the large holes in the ceiling.
From where they had been fighting in the room, Robin, Cyborg and Starfire were caught off guard by the sudden victory. Beast Boy was only vaguely aware of their joyful, although somewhat bewildered shouts echoing through the room.
Beast Boy remained where he was. Raven was not far, and she was making her way over to him quickly. She looked upset. Or worried. He wondered what was wrong. Then he felt the pain in his chest. His vision was beginning to go blurry. He dropped to his knees.
The sound of Raven's voice still echoed through his head.
And that was the last thing Beast Boy remembered before he lost consciousness.