Tip Ten—When a team member's family wishes to visit them, get as far away from the tower as humanly possible.
"I'm sorry… what did you say?" Robin asked, griping his bo-staff tensely. Cyborg shrugged guiltily, offering a weak smile to his leader.
"Uh—my family thought it'd be nice to stop by for a few days," He repeated, "So I, uh, told 'em it was okay."
"Without asking the rest of us?" He demanded.
"Hey," Cyborg countered, "Do you know my granny? Try saying no to that woman, I dare you!"
"I've spoken to her once," Raven joined the conversation, her voice even and without emotion, "She frightens me."
"She frightens you?" Robin repeated, forehead creasing into a frown. He considered this new information before speaking again. "I guess if she even scares Raven, there really is no refusing her."
"So they can come?" Cyborg asked hopefully.
"Yes, they can come. For a few days." Robin finished threateningly, giving Cyborg a warning look. "I'll go tell the others."
"The idiot," Raven smirked once the doors had closed, and turned to Cyborg; "Like I've ever met your granny."
For the next few days, the Titans cleaned the tower frantically. Raven and Beast Boy complained that they ought to hire someone to do it for them ("it's the least any of them can do for us"), Starfire tried to maintain a cheery attitude (she quit when she found the couch cushions glued together with peanut butter and fluff), Robin supervised (this translated to not doing a thing), while Cyborg started giving the others tips on how to behave around his family.
"My younger sister—Katherine, but you can call her Kat—is a really nice kid. You'll have no problems with her—Star, I think you two will get along great," Cyborg said excitedly. "And my mom and dad are great, too. You guys are gonna love havin' 'em here."
"It'll be great to get a home-baked mom-meal," Beast Boy mused, begrudgingly pushing the vacuum around the room.
"Huh? Oh, man, BB, no," Cyborg laughed. "My mom doesn't do the 'home baked meal' stuff. She and my dad both worked jobs all day! She didn't have time to cook us dinner. We mainly got take out or stuff you put in the microwave for a minute. I'm the best chef in the family."
"But all you know how to make is meat!"
The day his family was set to arrive, Cyborg performed 'inspections' on every single Titan. When they protested, he argued with; "IfI don't, granny will." After he was satisfied with all of them, he sat them in a line on the couch, giving them last minute advice.
"I forgot to mention, my grandparents can get a little testy," He explained. "Uh—basically, with them, as long as you stay outta their way, do whatever they ask you, and avoid eye-contact you'll be fine. Rae—"
"Don't worry. I'll avoid them at all costs." Cyborg grinned, looking relieved.
"You're the best, Rae!"
"Yes, I know." She joked dryly. The doorbell echoed throughout the tower, causing Cyborg to leap out of his seat in surprise.
"Okay. Come with me. Er—no, wait here. Okay, yeah. Wait here." He ran off towards the door, leaving the others in his wake. They fell into an awkward silence, unsure of what to do or say. Finally, they heard footsteps and voices, signaling Cyborg's return.
"Alright everybody—meet the Titans! That's Robin, Starfire, Raven, and Beast Boy," He went through the line dutifully, introducing everyone. "And Titans, meet my family! My mother, Deidre; my father, Derek; my grampy, Richard; my granny, Meredith; and my sister, Kat."
"Don't call me Kat," Katherine ordered, frowning at the Titans. A small smile graced Raven's lips.
"I think I'm going to like this girl."
"Don't get your hopes up," Katherine snarled.
"Katherine," Deidre chastised, before turning to the Titans and smiling brightly. "It's a pleasure to meet you."
"Nice to meet you too," Robin reached out to shake her hand, then Derek's. Beast Boy followed suite.
"Strong grip." Derek commended Beast Boy, who grinned proudly. "Must be all the meat they've been feedin' ya!"
"Huh? Oh, no way dude, I'm a vegetarian," Beast Boy explained. Derek's grin turned stoic.
"Vegetarian, eh?" He asked. Beast Boy nodded. Derek turned back to Cyborg, placing a hand on his shoulder. "Don't worry, son. We'll convert him yet."
"Cyborg!" Meredith slapped Cyborg's arm with her purse. "Are you just going to stand there and make your poor, old granny carry her bags up to her room?"
"Of course not—sorry, granny." He reached for her bags, only to have her slap away his hand again.
"Not you, Cyborg! Have one of them do it." She gestured carelessly to the other Titans. "I came here to visit my grandson, not turn him into a slave."
"I'll take them," Raven offered, looking for a reason to get away. Black energy encased the bags, and Cyborg's granny started shrieking right away.
"Devil child! Demon girl! Don't touch my bags with your devil magic! Witch! Witch!" She shrieked, leaping from foot to foot, pointing furiously at Raven. Stunned, Raven dropped the bags, and backed away slowly.
"Granny! Granny, calm down, she's not a witch! It's her powers, she can levitated objects with her mind. Calm down, granny."
"Don't you tell your granny to calm down, young man!" Richard ordered.
"Sorry grampy…" Cyborg mumbled.
"You should be, talking to family like that…" He grumbled. He glanced around at the other Titans, his eyes falling on Starfire. "Christ Almighty, she's half naked, Cyborg!"
"It's her uniform, Grampy," Cyborg tried to explain, earning another smack from his Granny's purse.
"I have displeased you in some way?" Starfire asked, distressed. "I apologize profusely—I shall change immediately!" Starfire flew off to her room in a panic, horrified that she'd already offended the guests. Meanwhile, Raven was ready to flee, too. She would have, if it weren't for Robin's grip on her cape.
"Raven's powers can be intimidating at first, I know, but she meant well," Robin assured Cyborg's grandmother, "It's nothing to be afraid of."
"Don't you talk back to me! Cyborg, is your friend talking back to me? Tell him not to!"
Cyborg sighed, hoisting his Granny's bags onto his shoulders while trying to separate her from Robin.
"It's gonna be a long two days…"
The next morning, Cyborg awoke to his mother making pancakes in the kitchen. The other Titans were up and sitting around the table, along with the rest of his family.
"Mom? Are you cookin' breakfast?" He asked.
"I sure am, honey," She replied. She smiled at him, but she sounded anxious. "Beast Boy here mentioned how long it had been since they'd had a home made meal cooked by a mother, so I felt obligated to make some for everyone."
"But mom, you're a terrible cook," Cyborg reminded her. Deidre waved him off.
"Don't be silly, darling!" The tension was evident in her voice, despite her flippant attitude. "Anyone can make pancakes! Isn't that right, Raven?"
"I can't." She replied.
"Oh! Well, um—" She was unable to finish her sentence, due to a painfully bad smelling black smoke rising from the pancakes. Starfire (who was now wearing a heavy sweater and snow pants to avoid further offending anyone) yelped, and ran to the sink to try and put out the flames that were now rising from the pancakes as well. Deidre sighed, letting herself fall into her seat sheepishly. "I guess you're not the only one, Raven."
"I'll make us breakfast," Cyborg offered, clearing away the burned remnants.
"Way to go, mom," Katherine rolled her eyes.
"Now Kat," Derek chastised, earning a glare from his daughter.
"Don't call me that!" She snapped.
"Your sister is my kind of girl," Raven said to Cyborg in approval. Katherine balked, looking horrified.
"Ew, Cy, is she hitting on me?" She asked, recoiling. Raven rolled her eyes, and pulled her hood up over her head.
"If I was a lesbian I wouldn't waste my time with you." She informed her shortly, before swiftly leaving the room. Just as she left, Cyborg's grandparents entered, looking disgruntled.
"Cyborg!" His grampy snapped, holding up a gift basket, "What is the meaning of this?" Inside the gift basket was large amounts of tofu and soy, as well as products containing them. Veggie burgers, tofu hot dogs, and soy milk were wrapped up in pretty green ribbons. Cyborg turned and glared at Beast Boy.
"I hope you're pleased with yourself, this is all we're going to hear about for the next twelve hours."
"When I was a kid, we didn't have this sissy vegetarian junk, you know! We ate real meat, and we liked it!" He was off, pacing the room as he ranted, while Meredith sorted through the gift basket and tossed items away in disgust. "Being a vegetarian wasn't an option! I grew up in the depression, you hear me? We didn't have the money to be picky! We ate what we were given, and we didn't complain one minute about it!"
Cyborg and the others had all but shoved Cyborg's family back into their car, they were so pleased. The vegetarian gift basket stunt caused a massive argument, and prompted Cyborg's family to leave a day sooner. (If they hadn't, Raven admitted, she would've thrown them into the bay.)
"Next time," Robin said through a forced smile as he waved at the departing guests, "You can visit them."
authors notes! school is completely wiping me out, i'm exhausted, and i'm so busy with school work that my updates will be a little less frequent. i won't disappear forever this time, though, i promise. NOW, ONTO THE REVIEW REPLIES.
cheekylildevil--AHHH! That's a really, really good point. And now I feel terribly stupid, because I went through and thought that I gave a reason as to why they had no way out of the closet. I guess I overlooked the most important one--Raven's powers! Well, um, all I can ask is that you use willing suspension of disbelief and pretend there is a reason as to why she doesn't use them.
lorendiac--While I appreciate your criticism, I knew all of that already. Keep in mind that I started posting for this story nearly two years ago, and my writing has improved since then. But also, as to what you were saying about sentences in "quotations" and the comma at the end instead of a period--sometimes, I knowingly ignore that rule. When one of the characters says something in a final or definite way (for example, Raven saying "get out of my room"), I put a period instead of a comma. Otherwise, I feel like it loses some of it's harshness. Oh--and as reference to Beast Boy and the tootsie roll, I really didn't think anyone would read that much into it. I was just looking for a goofy way to end it.
general havoc--your reviews make me laugh and smile! thank you for taking the time to review each chapter!