So, its been like almost three years since I last updated….but promise IM ALIVE! And because of this minor detail I am going to updating a lot and hopefully finish this story within a month or two! Yay! Anyways, onwards with the story! By the way, the song for the chapter is I Will Follow You Into the Dark by Death Cab for Cutie. It made me cry the first time I listened to it. I highly suggest listening to it if you have not before.
Disclaimer: I do not own the Teen Titans or Death Cab for Cutie (oh geez how i wish i did)
After the show, Raven came back to the tower in a daze. She could not feel anything: her suit against her skin, the leather of the T-Car's seats, the roughness of the keypad to enter her room, even the steps she was taking were all replaced by a numb, tingling feeling. She had not shed a single tear, but instead grieved for her teammate in the opposite fashion. She was like a ghost moving through the tower, as if she weren't really there. As if it were a dream.
Oh God, how she wished it were a dream.
And if she felt like this, imagine how Starfire must feel. Her heart went out the poor alien, who was faced with the possibility of losing her true love. Raven had been there once, and completely understood her pain. Except Raven's love came back to her, against all odds. Starfire might not be so lucky.
If he wakes up….many brain cells were damaged, we fear for his mental state….
The nurse's speech kept replaying in her head like a broken record.
He may never be able to use that hand again…half the flesh on his face was burnt off….reconstructive surgery….
Raven was scheduled for overtime healing sessions with him. Hopefully it would make at least a dent in the damage his body had suffered. It might not help at all. Her powers were only useful to an extent. The injuries Robin sustained could kill her if she attempted to heal him fully.
Yet, how awful would it be for her to sacrifice herself so he could live? She pondered the thought. Robin was like her brother; closer than a blood relative could ever be. He knew her, inside and out. He knew every ghost she hid in her well-locked closet. Even Beast Boy couldn't claim that kind of knowledge of his gothic beauty.
Raven kicked off her boots, removed her cape, and slid off her leotard. She still couldn't feel a thing. Her skin was like ice. Her hands shook with every tiny movement. Not even the tiniest part of her wanted to cry, but she wished she could make herself do so. At least then she would feel something. She felt nothing. Nothing but emptiness.
She grabbed a white wifebeater form her closet and slid it over her head. The hot nights lately had been causing her to sleep only in her underwear and a thin shirt. Though it was just the beginning of December, the night air coming in from the window was hot and muggy. Thank you, global warming.
Raven walked to the window and shut it with a resounding slam. She didn't even flinch.
"You're so lucky I decided not to use the window tonight. You coulda taken my head off," came Garfield's voice after the small pop that signaled his appearance. Raven didn't turn around to look at him, just stood at the window and hung her head. A sign escaped her chapped lips.
"Rae," he spoke softly. She could barely hear his footsteps across the carpet. In moments he was behind her, close, but not touching her. His breath was against her neck. She almost felt his hand as it moved to her shoulder. Centimeters away it stopped, hesitated. He brought it back to his side.
"Why?" was the one word that escaped her lips. "Why him?"
"And it's all my fault."
At this, Raven turned quickly and looked up into his bright green eyes, glistening with tears that threatened to fault.
"If it hadn't been him, it would've been you. One of you would have been hurt either way. And if he hadn't been there, no one would've been there to save you. You should be counting your blessings and realize how lucky you are. You were there to save him."
"I signed his death warrant, Raven. I wish you would see that!" His voice was getting louder now.
"No you didn't! He's going to be fine! I'll make sure of that," her voice rose as well, but with the last sentence it grew suddenly quiet. "He'll be ok."
Garfield sighed and raked a hand through his hair. It had gotten so haphazardly long since she'd last really seen him in true form. He looked so much older, his face had grown thin and she swore he was at least three inches taller. It was as if he were 20 instead of 17.
"Come here, Rae."
He opened up his arms to her and she gladly fell into them. Her body melted into his as he took her gently, one hand pressing against her head. His lips touched her hair for a brief moment.
"Please tell me you're staying the night."
"I will always be around for as long as you want me. Don't forget that."
He hoisted her up bridal style. She did not argue, only sunk into his arms as he carried her to bed. Gently, he laid her down and pulled back the covers to slide up and over her body. She snuggled in, hoping to feel the cool silk against her flesh. It didn't work, and she still felt nothing.
Garfield slipped in wordlessly next to her, pulling her into his body. She just barely felt the warmth of his body. He kissed her forehead tenderly, before laying his own head down. There had been enough commotion for one night. He was ready for sleep.
They were both fast asleep in minutes. The day had drained them both.
Raven awoke the next morning to see Garfield's shirtless back walking towards her bathroom. Her eyes immediately latched upon the bright red, blistering scorch mark spanning from his left shoulder to his right hip. She gasped.
He about-faced and noticeably winced. His right leg buckled only slightly, but it was enough for her to notice.
"Garfield, how come you didn't tell me?" She thought for a moment how strange it was she was now more comfortable calling him Garfield rather than Beast Boy. Then again, he was no longer Beast Boy. Beast Boy was dead.
"I didn't want to worry you. It didn't bother me at all last night, but this morning it was blistering and…I has to wash it out. I used your shower, I hope that's ok."
"You should have told me."
His look was sheepish and apologetic all rolled into one. "I'm sorry. I didn't want to worry you. You had enough on your mind already."
He walked with the slightest limp over to her bed. She couldn't help but notice haw large he had gotten. His muscles, though nothing in comparison to Cyborg's, were well-defined. His abdomen still had the scar from the fight with Overload (which she deduced had caused it, instead of that machinery bullcrap). In fact, he had tiny scars everywhere. Fighting took a toll on him, apparently.
"What happened to your leg?"
"It's a long story. I think I fucked up my knee. Stupid Plasmus," was all he gave.
He took a seat on the edge of her bed, pulling his right leg up so it extended out. She crawled out of the covers to take a better look at his back. It was blistering pretty badly. It was a deep scorch mark, but nothing crippling. He had survived much, much worse.
"God, that must hurt."
"Just a scratch," he murmured, wincing as she touched the unharmed skin just below his left shoulder. "It's only a flesh wound."
There was a knock at the door. Garfield jumped only slightly, stood, and looked wordlessly at Raven.
"Raven?" It was Cyborg. "It's time to go to the hospital and start your healing sessions with Robin."
Raven looked back at Garfield. "I'll meet you guys there, Cy."
"I'm not going just yet. Starfire's already there. I'll meet up with you two in a bit."
She heard his footsteps clunking away. She was surprised she hadn't heard them coming in the first place, but then again, she had been caught up in her worry for Garfield.
"I'll see you soon?" she asked, rather than stated.
"Soon, I promise."
He leaned over the bed and gently pressed his lips to hers. She savored the small sign of affection, and in moments he had disappeared with a pop.
Time to start the very, very long healing process.
When Raven arrived, Starfire was already in the room. The door was cracked only slightly, and though she had qualms about it, Raven couldn't help but stand silently outside as Starfire spoke in a calm whisper to Robin's comatose body. Starfire knew he wouldn't hear a thing, but it comforted her to speak to him, anything and everything that was on her mind.
"I am sorry for our fight. I am sorry for what I said. I did not mean a word, Robin. Oh, only if you could hear me and I could truly take it all back," her sugar-sweet voice sounded broken, as if she were crying. She probably was. "I miss you, Robin. I miss your touch, your kiss. I need you here. I need you."
Starfire sighed, and Raven was about to push the door open, before she spoke once more.
"But having you in such a state has made me realize something very crucial to whatever story we may weave together, Robin. Something I cannot bear to think but it is oh so true."
Another pause, but Raven dare not disturb this one. She couldn't approve of eavesdropping, but she was just so intrigued now.
"Love of mine, some day you will die, but I will be close behind. I will follow you into the dark. I could simply not bear to live without you, Robin. You are my one true love. Planet Earth is no home for me without you on it. You cannot leave me. You simply cannot."
At this, Raven barged in. She couldn't bear to think about the implications of Starfire's statements. She didn't mean what Raven assumed she meant. Did she?
"Raven, I did not know you were there! Oh, I am so sorry, begin your healing, please. We need him well as soon as possible!" Without another word, she stood and rushed from the room. Raven couldn't get a word in edgewise before she left in a flurry of fire engine red hair.
Raven sighed and slumped into the seat. She calmed herself before quietly whispering her age-old mantra. Her hands glowed intensely as she waved them over Robin's body. The most important part to heal as of now was his brain. Bringing him out of the coma, and possibly restoring some damaged cells were crucial to his survival.
And possibly Starfire's.
Raven had taken a short break, during which she dozed off in one of the painfully stiff armchairs in the hospital room. She awoke a few hours later to Cyborg and Starfire both at Robin's bedside, talking quietly as Starfire held his undamaged hand.
"Morning, sleeping beauty," Cyborg greeted as he watched her eyes flicker to life. "Have a nice nap?"
"No," she grunted. "Do you know how uncomfortable these chairs are?"
"No, I don't, actually," he retorted. "Being comfortable isn't really a big deal when most of your body parts are made of metal."
"Yeah, well, you're lucky. I wish my ass was metal so at least it didn't feel like a pin cushion right now."
Raven sighed and pushed herself up, looking over Robin's body. There was no change. At least, if there was, she couldn't readily see it.
"I don't suppose anything's changed?" Raven asked.
They both shook their heads wordlessly. The age old mantra slipped through her lips, before her hands began to glow bright white. She focused the energy over his head, still the most crucial part to heal. She could feel only a slight portion of the pain Robin would feel; half her face was tingling as if burnt and she felt the onset of a massive migraine. That's how she knew what to focus on. Whenever healing someone, she would feel a bit of their pain.
"How is it proceeding?" Starfire asked calmly.
"I haven't noticed a change yet, but hopefully within a few days we'll see some progress," Raven replied monotonously. "Optimistically by tomorrow night I'll have some of the damage in his head almost completely healed."
"That is great news," Starfire replied, without much feeling to her sentiments. It was almost as if she were giving up hope. If Starfire was giving up hope, something must be wrong with the world.
Suddenly, the colors of the world around her melted away into blackness. Raven couldn't move, couldn't talk, couldn't scream for help. Nothing like this had ever happened to her before. All around her was blackness, but she could still feel Robin's pain and still hear Starfire and Cyborg talking quietly around her.
"Raven? Raven? What's wrong? You look like you've seen a ghost!"
"Cyborg…." Starfire's voice wavered. "She looks….she looks so scared. Cyborg!"
"Raven…Raven! Raven…." Slowly Cyborg's voice died out and was replaced by a much more familiar one.
"Robin! ROBIN! GET OUT OF THERE!"
In a flash of bright white, flames started licking around her body. She tried to scream, but nothing came out. They lapped at her skin, but instead of burning hot it felt ice cold. She fell to the ground. All she saw was red. Her eyes began to close of their own accord. She willed them to open, but to no avail.
They snapped to alertness. Beast Boy was standing above her, his face pale green but his eyes shining with tears. He was in his Red X suit.
"Robin, Robin, please! Stay awake. Can you hear me? You'll be ok, I promise. Oh God, why did I send you here? Why did I do this to you? Robin, please, stay awake!"
Raven finally understood. In Robin's comatose state, his mind was working, but just barely. He was reliving that night that Beast Boy pulled him from the flames of Plasmus's fire.
As quick as it had come, it was gone. Raven snapped back to the bright white of the hospital room. She barely had time to register what had just happened before Starfire eagerly questioned, "Raven, what happened?"
"I…I don't know," she answered unsurely. "I think I saw into Robin's mind. I think he's replaying memories."
"Of what?" Cyborg asked. "The fight?"
"No," she lied. "They're…um…they're of Starfire."
The alien turned bright red in the cheeks, before reaching for his hand once more. "Oh, dear Robin!"
Raven inwardly sighed. She had saved herself there. It was better to outright lie then try and weave her way around the fact that Robin saw Beast Boy, in the Red X suit, pull him from the fire. Then, it finally hit her; Robin knew Beast Boy was Red X. She saw what he saw, and he saw everything.
Whether he would live to tell the tale or not was a different story entirely.
How was it? Awful? I haven't done this writing thing in quite a while, but I hate to keep this story on such a long hiatus as it's been. Please review and I'll keep up the work!