Disclaimer: Not mine...make no money off this, blah, blah...
RATING: VERY important to mind the M rating, kiddies! This is more M rating worthy than anything I've written previously and although it's still not bad to say it's beyond an M rating, it's pretty darn close. So, if you're young, stay away.
A/N: Not beta'd except for plot details. This is the Sequel to Instinct which you can find here: (remove the spaces and add the right colons and slashes at the beginning): http / www . fanfiction . net / s / 2410828 / 1 /
Full A/N below.
Instinct 2: Impulse
"If you let your fear of consequence prevent you from following your deepest instinct, then your life will be safe, expedient and thin."
- Katharine Butler Hathaway
"Show me the woman, however loyal, who does not seek to rouse desire."
- Honore de Balzac
According to the lunar calendar, it was exactly one month, nearly to the hour, that The Incident had occurred. (He had, of course, researched Lunar Calendars) It was almost 28 days to the hour that he had encountered Raven in such a strange and disarming state of...being. The whole encounter, which she seemed to have forgotten about, had thrown his whole life for a loop.
Twenty eight days before, she had left him curious and confused, too exhausted and slightly woozy from blood loss to go after her for more questions. And even though the next morning she had knocked on his door and made quick work of healing the wound, as she had promised, she had been back to unemotional normalcy and said not a word about their late night interaction.
It had taken him weeks to figure out whether or not he had ever been close to her during her 'time of the month' as she put it. In the end, he couldn't. Besides the fact that Raven never really acted any differently unless there was some outside force prompting it, she wasn't one to complain or have mood swings or any of the other symptoms usually associated with women in the midst of their cycle. However, he had been able to remember, with a reasonable amount of certainty, that at least twice before, he had wondered at Raven's blatant and illogical desire to be alone and apart from them. The first time he noticed it had been a few months prior to the incident. That night, they had been called to infiltrate an illegal rave in the warehouse district and Raven had begged off. He didn't remember the excuse she gave anymore, but it had seemed strange to him, at the time, as to why she would want to stay behind. It didn't matter that the full Teen Titan force was a bit of overkill for some human drug peddlers, but no matter how minimal the task, Raven was never the kind of person to avoid participating.
That time, he had thought it had to do with her somewhat anti-social tendencies: he had told himself that it was understandable that she wouldn't want to go to a rave filled with people who were drugged, if not drunk and who had absolutely no control over their emotions. But it would make even more sense if she didn't have use of her powers.
He couldn't place another instance of it (after all, Raven was rather anti-social by nature and it was not strange for her to be alone in her room for whole days without emerging) for another few months, until the day, a month before the day of the incident, when the Titans decided to make an evening at home of their unusually slow day. Without warning or explanation, Raven had left the Tower. Just left. No invitations for the others to join her, no 'bye guys, see you later'...nothing.
And when he had confronted her about it, asked her where she was going, what her plans were, before she left, she had shot him a death glare and reminded him in no uncertain terms that he didn't own her off time and that she'd have her communicator if they needed her. He never knew where she went that night, but he did know she didn't come home until way passed 4 in the morning, when he had finally passed out.
But despite all those other strange moments that had occurred and that he had made a mental note about their strangeness, he had never put them together. Never thought to wonder if there was a pattern. He had simply blown both of those instances off at the time as Raven having an 'off' day...in one of her moods, as Beast Boy put it, and when she was back to normal (or whatever normal was for her) the next time he saw her, he had been content to leave it at that.
It hadn't been until she was so completely off during the night the previous month and he had thought about her words that he started to realize there might be a connection:
'Just that time of the month...'
It was such a confusing and mysterious puzzle. He thought he knew so much about her, especially after their bond and the whole Trigon issue had been resolved. He didn't think there was much else about her he didn't know. Without even trying, he knew so much about her everyday habits, her likes and dislikes, the way she was most likely to react to something and this new dark and shadowed facet of her character had him wondering every hour of the day not employed otherwise, in trying to figure out what it was.
It was more than just her period, he knew that.
So of course, it couldn't be helped that he'd need to get some answers. That was who he was, after all. There was no way he could be presented with such a puzzle and not try to figure it out. She probably was expecting him to do something, too. And even though she gave no sign of expectancy, didn't even change the way she dealt with him on a day to day basis or during fight or battle, he knew that she must be waiting for him to make his move.
So, with her surely at such a state of alert, how could he approach the problem to assure the best results?
He looked at the calendar and counted one more time to make certain of his calculations. Of course, they weren't any different this time than they had been the last fourteen times he had counted since the plan had occurred to him two weeks ago.
'The Plan,' he thought, chuckling self depreciatingly. 'That's a joke.'
The Plan, as he so graciously called it consisted of nothing more than waiting for the day he calculated must be the key and then confronting her. That was it. He tapped at the date on the calendar. 'Twenty-eight days exactly…tonight,' he thought.
In retrospect, it was surprisingly easy to arrange. And if she had thought it strange that he would be the one to suggest to the Titans that they take an evening off to party, she hadn't let on. She had, as expected, denied joining them all for their partying, claiming when asked, that she had been planning to spend the night meditating and that it wasn't a good idea to put off the balancing effects of her meditation much longer. The others had insisted, begged, pleaded, but Robin had been the voice of reason, reminding them that they should accept their friend's reasoning so that they agreed to leave her in peace.
She hadn't been around when they were all ready to leave, which was why she didn't notice how he took the R-Cycle instead of riding with the others in the T-Car. And she certainly wasn't around when he pretended to remember a previous engagement which he had 'forgotten' until they were already on the road.
If she had been, she might have been a little suspicious then.
But since she wasn't and since it wasn't particularly strange for him to have appointments that he didn't explain about (they always assumed it was dealing with his secret identity life) no one else was suspicious and he made his way back to the Tower, unheeded.
He hoped she had stayed in the Tower.
From everything he had gathered, she preferred to stay in the Tower on these nights rather than go out and only went out if the others were around. (Which in itself was another question he needed answers to: why did she need to be alone in the Tower? Wasn't it enough to be locked away in her room?)
Once he reached Titans Tower, it was a small thing to enter without setting off any of the proximity detectors they had set up by clicking the button on his bike that deactivated them.
She was also surprisingly easy to locate.
Even if he wouldn't have had access to the Tower's computers which could pinpoint humanoid movement anywhere within the Tower and in a twenty feet perimeter to all sides, it would not have taken a genius to know where Raven would likely be on such a bright, clear, moon-kissed night.
The roof was an obvious choice. What had been a bit of a surprise, however, had been exactly where on the roof she had been.
Her lithe body cut through the blue green water as if the water itself were helping pull her through. She cut across the length of the rooftop pool with strong, sure, nearly flawless strokes. And when she reached the wall at the deep end, she flipped gracefully under water, pushing off the wall with strong legs and shooting toward the other end.
Robin watched her repeat this ritual in silence, wondering why she hadn't yet noticed his presence and tucking the realization that she hadn't away in his cache of facts about her strange behavior in the hopes that he could make some sense out of it.
That was the reason he had stalked this date and searched her out on it. It was why he had prepared so much and checked and verified his calculations to make certain he had the right date.
Purely academic, of course, his reasons to see Raven again on this day…exactly 28 days from the day last month when she had been so blatantly unlike herself.
It had nothing to do with the way he had to remind himself to breathe as he saw what she was wearing…or, he should say, what she wasn't wearing.
The nearly imperceptible strips of black cloth stood out against her skin and hence brought more attention to the parts of her body they were meant to conceal than might perhaps otherwise have been drawn to them under other circumstances.
He didn't even know Raven owned a bikini, let alone a little black string one. For some reason, the dark scraps of cloth on her opalescent skin glistening with water droplets like shining diamonds in the moonlight looked more erotic than a dozen much more explicit sights he had been witness to.
It wasn't until he found himself wondering about the way her skin looked so white, like marble or fine pearls in the moonlight that he realized she had stopped swimming laps and was floating lazily on the surface of the water, her face up toward the sky and her eyes closed.
So many questions flitted through his mind, begging for attention while other parts of him were wanting to be acknowledged as well. It was a game of tug-o-rope that threatened to give him a headache before he could figure anything out if he didn't decide on one thing to focus on above the others.
Ever the gentlemen, he clutched at the scholastic aspect of the enterprise.
What about this time of the month made Raven act this way? Why did she have the need to swim in a rooftop pool in the middle of the night when she refused to swim with them when they used the pool on summer days? Beast Boy had joked one time that she must have some sort of deformity that would be visible if she wore a swimsuit or bikini, but that theory was shot all to hell as Robin let his eyes take her in. (For the purely scholastic reason of checking her for deformities or scars she might not want visible in the light of day to her friends, of course.) And along that thought pattern, why did she have a bikini anyway if she had never wanted to swim? That she even knew how to swim at all was another surprise since she had never given reasons for not wishing to join them in their nautical fun and another theory (now, obviously debunked) was that she didn't know how to swim and was embarrassed about admitting it.
Robin watched her keep herself afloat with gentle, lazy movements of her wrists and he knew with the comfort and familiarity with which she moved that she knew and had known how to swim for quite some time.
It seemed like forever that she floated there, bathed in the evanescent glow of the moonlight reflecting off the water. So long, in fact, that he started to wonder if maybe he was dreaming. He tore his eyes away from her long enough to look around himself:
He felt the gentle breeze off the ocean caressing his cheek and softly pull at his clothes. It was a warm night, but with the breeze it wasn't too hot for a May night so close to summer. They would be making their own use of the pool soon, he knew. Nearby, on the harbor, a tugboat announced itself. Below them, the ocean pushed at the rocks and in the pool before him, the soft lulling cadence of the ripples hitting the tiles of the pool were in perfect sync with the soft lazy splashes of Raven's hands moving near the surface of the water.
And above him…
He raised his face to the sky and blinked for a few moments at the glowing, otherworldly brightness of the full moon riding high in the very center of the sky. She looked close enough to touch. If this wasn't a dream, Robin decided, he wouldn't know it. But then again, last month, he had also had the feeling that he was not altogether in reality once he came across her. Perhaps, he reasoned, it was something about her time of the month that affected the people around her as well?
Suddenly, he realized that there was something off…as if a switch had been pulled that changed the feel of the night somehow, and just like that, he couldn't hear Raven anymore.
He turned immediately to the pool but she was gone. He couldn't even find her shadow moving under the surface of the water. He thought she might have teleported back to her room or somewhere else, but he remembered that she said she couldn't use her powers during her time of the month, so…where was she?
Forgetting his stealth, he approached the edge of the pool and searched its depths. When he could find her nowhere, he grew worried and leaned even closer to the water to peer at the depths immediately below him.
As if suddenly materializing, Raven broke the surface of the water just inches from his face and it scared him halfway to Metropolis. Avoiding a collision with her, he instinctively, immediately, pulled back. The suddenness of the act stole his balance and he fell backwards hitting the concrete of the roof with his rear. He recovered quickly, standing and dusting himself off and managing to set aside his surprise and shock long enough to glare meaningfully at where she peeked over the edge of the pool, resting her chin on her arms and her arms on the concrete quite casually watching him.
"Boo?" she spoke on a question, her eyebrow quirked.
He took one look at her smug expression and knew instantly that she had been aware of him for quite some time, maybe even since he stepped onto the roof. "You surprised me," he offered.
She raised her eyebrows and shifted in the water, obviously floating, "That's obvious," she agreed.
He narrowed his eyes at her, but couldn't think of anything to say in his defense, so instead, he thought that putting her on the defensive would be his best bet, "You're swimming," he accused, pointing in her general direction.
She cocked her head to the side and looked almost cute. "No, I'm floating."
He just barely resisted a long suffering sigh, "You were swimming, then."
She didn't look at all apologetic, "You were watching."
He was shocked into showing his surprise, "You knew," he replied, not a question, but a statement of fact.
She grinned and the sight of it was brilliant and shocking and casual and graceful and utterly feminine and it blew him completely away. As if that weren't enough, she leaned her cheek on her arms and looked at him through lashes and stray wet hair. "Why didn't you go with the others?"
He obviously couldn't tell her the truth. Still, he couldn't get his brain to work around a credible lie. "I preferred to be here," he finally settled on a half-truth.
She shifted and something she did, although outwardly minuscule, had drastic consequences. She did nothing more than leverage herself up slightly, just enough to rest her arms on the edge of the pool, theoretically to better look at him. It was an innocent act, logical and understandable. There didn't appear to be anything purposefully provocative in the way she rested her chin on her crossed arms while she balanced herself. Nothing outwardly at least. But physically? The result was devastating on his state of mind. He lost his train of thought and could think of nothing but wondering if Raven's breasts had always been that...prominent. Before he could investigate too far, however, her voice cut through him again.
The simple question caught him completely off guard and he blinked a few times, "Why what?" he had well and truly forgotten what they were talking about.
She grinned that brilliant grin again and pressed against the tile as if to get a better grip, "Why did you prefer to be here?" she clarified.
Robin tried admirably to keep his thoughts in order and away from the way the porcelain like mounds of flesh at her chest seemed to strain against the lycra, the pearlescent beads of water glistening on the flesh visible around the thin black fabric. He wasn't too close to her, but he had good enough vision to see notice the goosebumps form on her skin. He shook his head, more in an attempt to clear it than to denote an answer to her, and wondered when he had become such a breast man? The truth was, even if he wasn't distracted by her ample bosom, he didn't know what to answer. Frankly, Robin didn't exactly know who he was talking to. This wet and supple and beautiful girl not two feet away from him was not Raven…at least, not the Raven he knew. It was as if someone else were speaking, not Raven who was usually cynical, sometimes sarcastic but always reserved. This girl was sexy and not only knew it, but flaunted it. And yet, still managed to look and act innocent.
She must have been cold by then because she shivered a little and even that reaction made parts of his body respond. He watched as she released the edge of the pool and with a slight splash, had sunk back into the water. She allowed herself to dunk under the surface for a few moments and when she reemerged, she was glistening with water once again, her lovely lavender hair nearly black in the half light and dripping down her back and over her face. She approached the edge again and looked up at him, "Well?" she asked.
"Well?" he echoed, watching in something not unlike a trance as she was casually, almost absently, cupping water and pouring it on different, exposed parts of her to keep herself warm.
She chuckled, and the sound was dark and rich, like thick chocolate, "You're sweating Robin."
Her voice, cool and smooth, like ice melting in a tall glass brought his attention away from the parts of her body she was offering attention to and he realized she was right. His eyes trailed the path of the water she was pouring rhythmically over her shoulders and he was once again entranced as he followed it's downward descent into the cleavage of her bikini. She stopped and he realized he had been staring. He licked his lips unconsciously and wiped at his brow, "It's warm out here," he offered, almost automatically.
She offered him a subdued version of the brilliant smile. "Then why don't you come into the pool?" she raised the hand and let the water trickle across her almost bare shoulder, "It's nice and cool in here…"
"I…I…" he realized he was stammering, not because he didn't know what he wanted to say or how to say it, but because he kept being distracted before he could speak it all. He swallowed and looked at her eyes, but even there he could find distraction in the warm, welcoming smile he saw in them.
She chuckled and pushed away from the concrete edge, keeping herself aloft by moving her arms slowly. "Heat got your tongue?" she asked innocently.
In these circumstances, he realized, the best course of action was to retreat.
"I'm bothering you," he started, mentally telling his legs to move. They wouldn't listen.
"You're not," she assured him softly.
"I should go…" he finally got one leg to move and he had almost convinced himself that it was the right thing to do when he heard the sound of water splashing and before he knew it, he had turned back to look at what had happened.
Which really had been the mistake from which there was absolutely no return. Robin was a gentleman, and he was respectful and loyal and he was rather good at controlling most of his baser instincts (anger and temper aside). However, he was also a young man of just barely 19, much too young to have the vision before him and not feel some stirring in his blood. And considering that Raven stood before him, in nothing more but some measley scraps of black lycra clinging to her moist, glistening skin in some vague, (albeit obviously pointless) attempt to salvage her modesty, he really did behave himself quite admirably. After all, his jaw nearly hitting the floor and all conscious and logical thought draining (along with the blood) to pool somewhere in the vicinity of his lower regions was quite a normal reaction to such a vision of sensual temptations made flesh.
As it was, he was lucky he had enough self control to keep from falling on his knees before her or reaching out to touch her with something other than his eyes.
She meanwhile, seemed to be waiting. The only sound seeming to come from his abnormally heavy breathing, the echo of his heart in his own ears, and the faint, almost inaudible sound of the water off her body dripping on the pavement. His eyes found the water pooling at her bare feet and he wondered absently how long he had been staring.
She moved, shifting the weight of her feet and rather than knocking him back to his senses, the movement did nothing more but to draw his attention back to her oh-so-shapely legs as she began walking. His eyes followed her, slowly rising from legs to buttocks, to waist, to back and finally, when she turned around with a white towel in her hands, to stomach and chest and graceful neck and chin and lips and brow and hair...
He couldn't help but follow the towel as she gracefully dried off certain parts of her body. When she reached her face, she stopped, the towel held against her cheek and he found himself staring at her amazing eyes which were staring right at him.
He didn't realize it right away, but she had been giving him quite a show. When he did realize it, he blinked and remembered in some part of his mind that he had been about to leave. He shifted his own weight and tried to remember which way was out, but her voice drew him back to her eyes.
"Afraid?" she challenged.
His pride reacted before the rest of him could and he scoffed, "No, of course not…of what?"
"Of this…" she motioned around them and took one graceful step toward him, her pale, bare foot making an almost inaudible sound as she touched the concrete. "Of that…" she motioned up at the moon and he glanced up as if to make certain it was still there. "…and what it's doing to me…" When he looked at her again, she was a mere few inches away from him. He held himself back from giving ground. "Of me…" she leaned in to him and he felt drops that had been trailing off her skin fall on his chest. "…and what I might do…" she whispered so that her breath just barely grazed his cheek. To his credit, he didn't pull back. He did close his eyes however, and clenched his hands into fists to keep from touching her. "Of us…" she pulled back and the cool, silky smooth fingers of her right hand were touching his cheek, turning him to face her, while her left hand was trailing over his right arm, caressing his skin as she lowered it past his wrist to finally come to rest over his hand, laying her fingers around his fist, "Of what you came here to find out."
She was right and he knew it. He had come searching for this, and now he found it. He met her gaze which had uncannily found his even though he still wore the mask and allowed his fingers to uncurl from the tight fist.
He was so close to her now that he could feel the humidity still on her skin, the water dripping off her hair catching on his sleeve.
He opened his mouth, hoping that something smart or at the very least logical might come out of it, but instead, he gaped not unlike a fish.
She smiled and it reminded him of a child that has just discovered something sweet. He wanted to investigate that smile more, try to read the look in her eyes, but his attention was drawn away, scattered amongst too many sensory experiences and he couldn't focus on just one long enough to figure anything out. Her fingers ran along his temple and before he could even wonder what he felt about it, they were gone and she had stepped away from him just enough so that he could exhale without touching her, but when he tried, it was only to realize he couldn't find any air…he felt as if he were stuck in a crowded room with too many people and not enough air so that he was sweating and didn't know how to get out…wasn't sure he wanted to get out.
"Why…" her voice came, sweet and soft, barely intrusive except for the way it wrought a reaction out of him, "…you're sweating even more now."
He knew she was expecting a response, but he couldn't think of one that would get him out of this mess. "I'm…" he tried, having to clear his throat before he could continue, "…hot."
She rose a brow and for a second, there was just a glimpse of the sardonic smile that went for glib on the face of the Raven he knew and was familiar with, but in a heartbeat, it was gone, leaving only an achingly childlike, trusting, and altogether saccharine twist to her lips and an innocent mischievous shine to her eyes that left him blinking and wondering just what he was on that might make him dream of such things.
"Well, that's easy to solve," she said easily. She stood just a little bit further away from him and he realized he was leaning toward her as she did. He forcefully planted his feet on the ground and straightened himself to look at her as she motioned the pool. "Just take a swim with me," she said. "The water's cool and it'll feel great if you're hot."
"I…" his first instinct was to agree, but he knew that if it was his first instinct, he should not give in to it…he couldn't trust his instincts at the moment, and he somehow knew that. "…can't."
She cocked her head to the side, "Why not?"
He hadn't expected her to ask. The Raven he was familiar with wouldn't have. So, what made her so different? He was so shocked at seeing her this way, he had forgotten to wonder at why she was acting this way at all. Raven had somehow turned the tables so that the hunter had become the prey. And what was more, he knew he shouldn't, but for the life of him, he couldn't think of one single reason why he couldn't. Why couldn't he?
Despite his best efforts, his eyes trailed over her body, still moist even though no longer dripping, and still reflecting the light of the moon off her skin like some inner light glowed within her. An inner light he found impossible to keep his eyes off.
She smirked and it drew his eyes, against his wishes, to the fullness of her mouth, "You like my bathing suit?" she asked, and if it were anyone else but Raven, he might say that the tone was teasing, but it was Raven, so…
Robin nodded and couldn't help but take another once over; the suit, or what there was of it, was simple, nothing but black lycra held up by a series of straps and cords and so it wasn't exactly what one might call pretty…but it was certainly…effective. He had to physically bite his own cheek to stop from answering, 'What suit?' to her question. Which was about all the restraint he could muster on the matter as he found himself nodded despite himself, "Some suit," he admitted a bit gruffly.
"So are you going for a swim or not?" she prodded.
"No," he answered forcefully, "Can't…" and he glanced quickly away from her pout (Raven, pouting?) to busy himself instead with thoughts of excuses he could give. 'A suit!' he thought, nearly leaping in joy at the thought. "I don't have a bathing suit."
She smiled and it was pure honey and invitation, as if he could almost smell the scent and knew that what she promised would taste like heaven.
"I don't mind."
As her words filtered through his mind and the meaning behind them sunk into his consciousness, he flushed straight through to his toes…not at the invitation itself, but at his complete and all consuming desire to accept. He knew the best way to deal with this would be to joke it off, pretend that it didn't affect him, but for the life of him, he couldn't figure out how to.
He never felt so trapped by his own desires before in his life. A part of his mind was wondering considering the suggestion as not such a bad idea while another part of his mind was flashing red lights and screaming out, 'DANGER! DANGER!' and he didn't know which one to pay attention to.
"Come, Robin," she spoke, "Isn't this what you came for?"
And her words snapped his attention away from every sensory overload he might have been experiencing and right at the fact that she knew. And then it occurred to him what she might think he came for and although he flushed again, there was offense there and a bit of anger and he held onto those, "You think I purposefully wanted to find you in this state of...of..." he faltered.
"Arousal?" she provided casually. When it took him a moment to realize that she had so simply stated something of that nature, she laughed. "Of course I think it's why you're here," she answered simply. "All of us wondered how long it might take you to figure something out...we all knew you wouldn't just come and ask me about it."
"Us?" he blinked in confusion, who had she shared this with?
She chuckled and walked to the table where a glass of something dark and red waited. She tapped her head, "Us..." she took the glass and brought it to her lips, "The other Ravens, as Beast Boy and Cyborg have named them, that live in Nevermore."
He knew about the time Cyborg and Beast Boy entered Raven's mirror and he knew about the havoc they had caused. He also knew that all three of them had undoubtedly become closer since then. For some reason, the reminder of it, brought a frown to his lips. "What's going on, Raven?" he asked, his voice not quite as steady as he would have liked it.
She sighed and his attention was unavoidably drawn to the way her chest rose and fell with breath, "And we knew that if you did, you would be like this."
He wasn't sure he hadn't just been insulted. His frown deepened, "Like what?"
She shook her head and took another sip from the glass, as if she were biding her time to think. Finally, she looked at him and she looked almost sad...almost disappointed. "It doesn't matter." She lowered the glass and smiled kindly at him, "You're right," she told him, "Perhaps it is best if you go." She turned around and padded back toward the pool.
"What?" he was getting dizzy from all the mood swings.
"You're asking too many questions," she announced as she walked around the edge of the water, clearly heading for the deep end on the other side of where they had been standing, "And if you're not going to help, you might as well just go and let me deal with this on my own."
"I'm confused," he admitted.
She turned her upper body to look at him and sighed, "And I'm sorry," she said sincerely, shrugging. "But tonight is not the night to ask questions..." she stepped up to the edge, "Ask me tomorrow," she said and executed a perfect dive into the deep end of the pool, cutting fluidly across, under the water's surface from one end to the other of the pool before having to surface for air.
He was at the edge, waiting for her and when she surfaced, she pushed back her hair and, blinking water out of her eyes, looked at him. "Help how?" he asked.
She smiled that predatory smile again and he felt a tug deep inside him in response, a milder version of the fight or flee response. "Are you certain you want to ask that?" she asked, floating to the edge, still looking up at him. "I won't give you the chance to go again," she warned.
He thought about it for all of two seconds, then nodded. "Help how?" he repeated.
She smiled, "Well, first..." she said, and reached out a hand out of the water for him to take and when he did, she let him pull her halfway out of the pool before bracing her feet on the edge and pulling back down into the water, making him lose his balance and fall head first into the water.
He came up sputtering for air and trying to see around the hair that had plastered before his eyes. He pushed the hair out of his eyes and turned around looking for her, only to find that she was right behind him. Before he could utter two words to her, however, she put her hands on his shoulders and pushed him backwards through the water. He was so surprised, he didn't think about resisting until his back hit the concrete of the edge.
"What are you doing?" he demanded, surprised.
Her hands had found the clasp of his cape and she unclipped it, throwing it unconcernedly over the edge of the pool so that it landed with an undignified plop somewhere on the concrete.
Her hands were everywhere, and they turned in the water with the momentum of her touch, her exploration of him. Somehow, she managed to remove first one glove, then the other, and they too were tossed with uncaring force to land outside the pool. Before he could comment or even think of what was happening, her mouth decided to taste the newly exposed flesh of his fingers. His knees buckled as her warm, hot mouth took in his index finger and her tongue seemed to lap at it as if licking at an ice cream cone. Her eyes rolled up to look at him and she smiled predatorily.
She knew exactly what she was doing to him.
She slowly drew her mouth back away from his finger and placed a soft, tender kiss on the tip. Her eyes still on him, she pushed against him to gain enough leverage to pull herself up and pressed her lips against his chin, working her way up until she had captured his lips again.
A part of him thought he should try to get her to stop, but he didn't know how. He didn't know which side was up, didn't even think of how to stop her until her hands found the edge of his uniform's top and he felt her cool hands on the flesh of his stomach under the water.
"Raven!" he exclaimed, reaching for her hands and holding them in place. "For gods' sakes, stop."
She stopped and looked at him, "I'm only getting you out of your wet clothes, Boy Wonder," she said dryly, "I'm not going to take advantage of you."
"Why?" he managed.
Her expression turned teasing, "You want me to take advantage of you?" she asked innocently, starting to try to move her hands out of his grasp.
"No," he held onto her hands, "Why are you doing this?"
She relaxed in his hold and allowed the water to push her against him, "Why is a question and I told you tomorrow was for questions," she reminded him, her hands slipping from his and although letting go of the edge of his uniform, they turned instead to the flat skin of his stomach her questing hands had revealed.
He inhaled sharply as her hands seemed to want to investigate every bump and plane of his skin. Somehow, he managed to take hold of her hands again, and although he didn't push them away, he did still them enough for him to look at her, "Tomorrow might also be for regrets," he said.
She smiled and it was the innocent smile again, "No regrets," she said sincerely. "Not with you."
"Are you...?" he trailed off, trying to find answers in her eyes for questions she wouldn't let him ask.
She smiled softly and her hands relaxed under his and she pulled them away, lifting her right hand to his cheek, "Every full moon my powers wane," she said seriously, "So that I may find a mate..." she finished, realizing that she must explain at least something before he would accept what she was offering. "I am still me, only without powers and feeling an incredible urge to copulate," she turned away from him, "I do not become mindless, willing to fuck the first guy that comes around," she said bluntly, "But it does become harder for me to hide my emotions the way I normally would because I don't have any of my other abilities to aid me." She looked up at the moon, still high in the sky. "I didn't think anyone would be here so I let the emotions run free," she explained. "I can sate lust with other types of physical sensations sometimes," she sighed, "And sometimes that's enough, so I do things that please me in a sensory way..." she let her hands trail in the water, "This is quite pleasurable," she admitted. "So is the breeze on the moist skin...all these things...all these tricks..." she trailed off and sighed and turned back to him, "But when a man is attracted to me, it becomes harder to control myself," she continued, "It is as if his lust feeds mine..." she met his eyes and made sure he could see the seriousness there, "It is why I avoid the rest of you once a month," she answered his unasked question, "It is why last month, I could have very easily taken you on the med lab bed," she admitted and there was absolutely no embarrassment in her tone, just plain fact and lust in her eyes. "And you..." she approached him slowly, letting him see the emotion in her eyes and leaving no doubt as to its nature, "You sought me out this night," she approached even close, and stopped just shy of touching him, "I will not have regrets, because even despite the urge, I can always stop if I wish it," she smiled. She approached him a little, not touching him, but watching him very closely, "But...I don't want to stop, Robin..." she spoke, her voice low, seductive in its intimacy. "Do you?" She exhaled and looked into his eyes, "Would you have regrets tomorrow?"
There were many things that he knew he should be considering. Many other things that he knew he'd have to face in the morning, but if she truly wanted this, then he couldn't think of a single one that was enough to make him want to stop.
"No," he answered, moments before closing the distance between them and crushing her mouth against his.
Movement in the water was easy and before either of them really knew it, he had turned them around and was pushing her against the wall of the pool, lifting her just that much above the water so that he could get closer to her, feel more of her. Her arms reached around his neck and crossed there, her hands delving into his wet hair, and her legs crossed at his back, so that only his arms, the buoyancy of the water and the wall behind them kept her from falling beneath the surface. And all the while, he sought out ways to get closer to her, to take in more of her, to feel more.
He was no stranger to kissing, but he had never hungered for another's mouth as much as he did then. Every taste he got left only more desire in its wake. He could taste the wine she had been drinking lingering on her tongue and he could smell the chlorine of the pool on her skin, but underneath it all was the taste that he somehow knew would only ever be Raven and the smell he knew only as Raven's. And when finally, he had to release her to breathe, he didn't let her think but took in the necessary air and bent his face to hers once again, sidestepping the sweet fruit of her mouth to better complete the tasting of her. He nibbled at her neck, and sucked in the rapid beat of her pulse in his mouth before continuing his exploration further south.
His hands had found her hips and it was all too easy to lift her up higher in the water, exposing more of her skin to his lips. She was so deliciously wet already, the goosebumps raising as he exposed her skin to the cool air above the water. She tried to bring him close to her again, but he resisted, giving in to a wicked thought.
He watched as her nipple hardened under the black lycra of the bikini when he blew on it and he thrilled at the ability to make her react by such a simple act. She gasped as he repeated the process on her other breast and gave in to the temptation to caress it with his thumb. As he let his thumb graze both her nipples, her gasp turned into a soft moan and her heels dug into his ass, urging him closer.
When he didn't seem in any particular rush, Raven's hands in his hair tightened and she took a fist full of his hair, pulling back enough so that he raised his face to her with a grimace, "Don't get them all excited if all you're going to do is watch," she warned, her voice full of need before she bent her head down to capture his lips, invading his mouth and fighting his own tongue for dominance of the kiss.
The demand of her mouth caused him to lose his balance and she managed to push him back away from the wall and submerging them both into the water. And all the while, the kiss continued.
When Robin managed to find his feet on the concrete ground, and lifted them up, breaking the kiss for air, Raven had once again found the seam of his uniform top and was pulling it up out of the water. "It's no fair if you're the only one with access," she purred lifting his arms up over his head and pulling the wet top with it. Once again, she tossed it over her shoulder and it landed somewhere near the cape, although he was too busy to really notice where.
Her hands were back on his skin before he could gather his thoughts and with a wicked grin of her own, Raven stopped as her fingers grazed his own nipples. She caressed them exploratorily and leaned in close to him, "Ah...this is more like it," she said seductively in his ear when he reacted.
Robin gasped at the sensations that ran through his whole body as, while she pinched them thought it might be a good idea to take his earlobe into her mouth. The combination nearly undid him and although his knees buckled just a bit, and his arms wrapped tight around her to hold on, they didn't dunk under the water again.
And her hands...her hands continued their soft, pleasurable torture as they traced up his arms and to the sides of his face. For just a moment, her fingers playing with the edge of the black microfiber protecting his eyes, she paused and pulled back. Her fingers splayed on the fabric and he closed his eyes, waiting for her to remove it.
He felt her lean against him, "I want to see your eyes," she whispered breathlessly, her breath tickling the inside of his ear. "Will you show them to me?"
Her hands were still on the mask, but they were feeling the material of it, and not pulling at it at all, not messing with it and not anywhere near to removing it. He was surprised by the emotion her request raised. Not at what he would answer, but at the fact that she would ask, even in their current situation. He had made no move to stop her, she could have easily removed it before he would have noticed and with the state of his body there was no way he would have minded. But she asked.
He opened his eyes and stared at her, bringing his hands up slowly to press against hers, still over the fabric of the mask. The emotion in her eyes shifted, but she waited.
He took her fingers, leading them to press at the hem of the mask, and when he had placed it there, he used her own hands to pull the wet, clingy fabric off his face. Her hands remained on the now bare skin surrounding his eyes and her eyes were so transfixed on his that he couldn't help but smile as he threw off the mask, uncaring where it landed.
She smiled at him and it was that smile that warmed every part of him, from the inside out. She looked into his eyes and saw the emotion in them, the desire and the need and the way he felt about her smile and before he knew it, he was smiling too. Her hands were still at the sides of his face and she used them as leverage to lean into him. When he thought she would kiss him again, she surprised him by placing a gentle kiss on his eyelids.
It was all he could do to keep still and when it seemed she would go somewhere other than his lips again, he reached up and pulled her close enough so that he could claim her kiss again.
When they broke the kiss for air, it was to find that they were somehow in the middle of the pool. Thankfully, he was tall enough to be able to stand on the cement bottom, and could stand still enough to allow himself some exploration. It was his turn, after all.
His fingers found and tangled in the lycra strings he knew held her bottom together, and although he teased at the knots and found the flesh underneath, he didn't pull. Instead, he distracted her from rushing him by tasting her lips, nipping at her lobe, licking her neck...
He groaned in response when she pressed herself against him and he could feel her breasts straining against his bare chest, when her hands tangled in his hair and pressed his lips onto hers again, but he wouldn't hasten his pace. He would take this slowly, he would savor every moment of the experience the way he savored the taste of her skin. He could feel her need and her desire and it made him swell with need, made him press just a little against her in response, tug a little harder at the ties of her bikini, and shake a little with repressed want but he wouldn't let her rush him. He wasn't in a hurry...
After all, they had all night.
By the time the morning light finally woke him from sleep, it had crawled far enough passed his drapes to lighten up his entire room. He woke up drowsy and exhausted, warm and perfectly willing to ignore the light and continue dozing right where he was. So, figuring he had at least an hour or two before the others woke up, he snuggled back down under the covers, digging his face against the warmth of the cozy, soft pillow that smelled amazingly like Raven.
Contrary to popular belief, Robin wasn't necessarily a morning person and so it took him a bit of time (despite the fact that his hands had found an incredibly comfortable rest against a sleep warmed patch of skin) to realize that he was not alone in his bed.
But, he wasn't stupid, and he wasn't about to move. He did, however, open his eyes. Everywhere in his vision was sun kissed purple. He inhaled deeply and moved his head just a little, verifying that was he was seeing was in fact, Raven's hair splayed over his left arm and under his cheek. His eyes followed strands of hair to pale nape of neck to half-exposed shoulder as the white shirt she was wearing had gaped open and was pinned under his arm as it lay around her waist.
Everything that had happened the night before flooded his consciousness and suddenly, the comfortable, contented lethargy made perfect sense. His instinct was to press her tighter against him and go back to sleep, they deserved it after the night they had, but he stopped himself. What if she would feel regret? Should he try to get her out of his room? Would she pretend none of it happened? Would she want to? Would he let her?
She moved, shifting under his arm and before he could decide if to let her go or not, she decided for him by pressing closer against him, her back arching against his chest, her butt pressing against him as if seeking his warmth and her face facing the pillow as if trying to hide from the sun as her hands sought out his hand which lay flat against the plane of her stomach and brought it between her hands up to cuddle it under her chin.
He couldn't help but smile at the warmth of 'rightness' that flooded him. She looked so cute...almost like a baby cat.
He wondered how long it would take her to realize where she was and what she was doing. He wondered, against his will, whether he should wake her up? At least that way she wouldn't be able to claim that he had tried to take advantage of the situation afterward. But if he wanted to wake her up, how should he?
"Shh..." she mumbled, under her breath, snuggling her face closer against his arm. She exhaled and her breath ticked the inside of his arm where her cheek was pressed, "You think too much too early in the morning," she said her voice thick with sleep.
He was floored. Was she awake? "Raven?" he asked, raising with a little bit of trouble onto his arm to try to look at her. "Are you awake?"
"I am now," she answered, her eyes still closed. She let go of his hand and he brought it up to gently pull the hair that had fallen across her face. She blinked up at him and stretched, turning onto her back as her whole body elongated, giving him ample time to view how her pale skin shone in the sun in the areas where the white shirt...gaped at her cleavage and his sheets fell around her waist.
"You were reading my thoughts?" he asked when she finished her luxurious stretch and settled back against the pillow, staring calmly at him.
"Couldn't exactly help it," she said, her voice still slightly hoarse from sleep, "You were projecting too hard and my guard was down because I was asleep," she explained.
He picked up on her reference to her abilities. He knew she hadn't had them the night before. "Your powers are back?" he asked.
She nodded, extending an arm so that the ray of light she had been hiding from could wash across it. She seemed to contemplate the light and the warmth for a few moments before nodding, "They are."
"Oh," he replied. "Then I'm sorry I woke you up."
She looked back at him and cocked her head to the side, as if to better inspect him while keeping her head on the pillow. "Why is that?" she asked.
She looked, he realized, almost comfortable in his bed, as if she belonged there and had been there every day all of her life. As if it were her bed. To be specific, she didn't look surprised to be in his bed. She didn't appear to be mad or embarrassed and most importantly, not in the least remorseful. When realization of at least that fact filtering through his sleepy and sluggish brain, he grinned at her. He rested his elbow on his pillow and leaned on his side to watch her, "I wouldn't have minded watching you sleep for a little while longer."
She smiled languidly and turned toward him, lifting the covers over her shoulder and resting her face on the pillow, "I can accommodate that," she said softly closing her eyes.
He raised his hand to gently push her hair away from her face and she smiled sleepily. "I thought as soon as the sun came out, everything would go back to normal," he said softly, letting his hand run through her hair rhythmically.
"Depends on your definition of normal," she said, eyes still closed, her voice completely relaxed.
"Well, I thought normal meant I wouldn't be able to do this," he said, trailing his hand gently through her hair, over her cheek and back again.
"No," she said, her voice a little breathy, "That's good," she said, eyes still closed, face still serene, "You can keep doing that all you like."
He chuckled that deep, knowing way that meant he knew exactly what it was doing to her, "So, what does normal mean then?" he prompted, letting his gentle caress find new areas of exposed skin to explore, first forehead and eyelids, then nose and lips, chin and neck, then shoulder and back to the beginning, all the while Raven's eyes remained closed.
"Well," she said softly, "We can't let things get weird for the others," she said, moving just a little to allow him access to more of her neck. His hand trailed over the spot that was just slightly bruised, the mark of where he had become enthralled with feeling her pulse inside his mouth, as if he could swallow her and he knew she'd have hell trying to cover that up. And the surprising thing was he was glad.
"Agreed," he said steadily, "But does that mean we won't tell them about what happened?"
"That's up for discussion when we're not so..." she swallowed, "...sleep deprived, I think."
He chuckled again and let his fingers play with the edge of the t-shirt just above her breasts, just barely letting the pads of his fingers graze the flesh there. "Okay," he conceded. "And?"
"And..." she trailed off, holding her breath as his hand decided where else to go. Exhaling when he followed the line of her collarbone back to her chin, she continued, "Otherwise, we deal with this maturely," she said, her breath hitching just a little as his fingers grazed her lips. When they moved on to her cheeks, "and we don't let it interfere with our responsibilities to Jump," she finished on an exhale.
"Does that mean we can't..." his hand was back by the cleavage of the t-shirt, "...reprise last night except once every full moon?" he finished, smiling at the reaction of her skin as she anticipated where he was going to go next.
She smiled, "Not everything we did last night, no," she answered. His hand stopped as she shifted and he felt her warm hand trail in much the same way as his had up the front of his stomach, traveling up from his stomach to his abs and before they could reach the sensitive spot she had found the night before, he stopped her. Her eyes opened as he took her hand and pulled it away. He was looking at her with a playful kind of warning in his expression, "Ah, ah..." he leaned forward and used her hand as leverage to push her onto her back on the mattress, pressing both her hands onto the mattress on either side of her face, "So," he said, conversationally, shifting until he was leaning across her to look down at her. "Not everything from last night?" he asked.
"Not if we don't want to bring the Tower down around us, no," she answered, humor and something else in her eyes.
"But some of the other stuff is okay on a regular basis?" he asked, his thumbs tracing circles around her inner wrists, his fingers entwining with hers, his eyes taking in every inch of her form as the white t-shirt pressed taught against the mounds of her chest, offering him the barest hint of secrets under him.
She chuckled, "Regular basis, huh?" she asked. "Well..."
He leaned down until his lips were inches from hers and when she caught her breath in expectation, he swooped down and lightly teased them before pulling away, "Yes or no?" he asked, his voice no longer casual but husky and deep.
The look in her eyes shifted, "Yes," she said, "I do have some restraint on my powers on a regular basis."
He smiled and, keeping her hands pressed into the mattress at her sides, he sat up, and swung one leg so that his knees were on either side of her. He leaned down to kiss the the corner of her mouth, "So, what can we do, then?" he asked, his words interspersed by small, butterfly kisses along her chin, her cheek, her eyelids, her forehead, everywhere but her mouth.
"I don't know," she breathed.
"I guess we'll have to do a little experimenting, then, won't we?" he asked, once again bypassing her lips and kissing her neck close to her earlobe.
She frowned and he grinned.
She waited until he bent down to kiss another part of her and lifted just enough off the mattress to catch his neck in her mouth, letting her teeth nip at him. He started and looked at her in surprise. She took the chance that his weight eased up off her hands to flip them over so that she was straddling his hips, pressing her body against him and keeping his hands down on the mattress.
Her look was steady and serious, but her eyes gleamed in expectancy and mischief, "If you're going to tease...I'm going to bite."
He grinned and his blue eyes twinkled in the sun light, "Well, that's certainly a place to start."
Later, much later, Robin had to restrain himself from laughing when Cyborg walked into the common room with a pair of soggy steel tipped boots, "Robin?" he asked, holding them by the laces, "What were your boots doing in the pool?"
And only Robin's quick reflexes managed to save Raven's mug from crashing on the floor.
A/N: All of you have MsLessa to thank that this got posted, just so you know. She was soooo good about serving as plot beta since Puck abandoned my happy ass about halfway through. Or maybe it was because I got to feeling so self conscious about the smut factor of this that Puck just got tired of trying to inspire me? I think that was it, because once MsLessa started talking with me about it and assured me it wasn't as cliched sounding as I feared, I was back and running with inspiration as to how to finish it. So, everyone thank MsLessa if you enjoyed it.
She also pointed out something VERY important in this fic that I missed completely. If you can find what it is, you'll get a cookie! (And if you ask nicely, you might get a preview of what's coming) Anyway, what she pointed out thrust this continuation which was just going to be a one-shot continuation of the first one into a a multi-chaptered fic. So YES, this is now going to continue. I know where I want to take it, don't know where it's going to end but I have a feeling...a nice, warm, fuzzy feeling which means I like the idea very much and it'll probably end up that way. I did a WHOLE bunch of plot work with MsLessa on this and like i said, if it wouldn't have been for her, I probably wouldn't even have noticed that possible aspect of what I mentioend that could extend this to a much longer fic! So, YAY MsLessa!
I will warn you though, I don't have the next part of how I'm going to continue it written, so it'll probably be a little bit before it gets posted. There's other stuff I want to work on, so I probably won't sit down and prod Puck to give me the next installment of this for a little bit. But, who knows? Puck's flighty and might just decide to latch onto this idea and finish it within the week...eheh...
So...should I tell you what the next part is going to be about? Well, you know, I don't think I will...
I think what I'll do is post it in my emsscraps journal in a few days. (evil grin)
But if you can guess correctly what part of what happens in this fic leaves the story open to continuation, I'll share with you a preview of what's coming, if you want it that is.
Thanks: I'm actually not going to go back to the reviews for Part 1 of Instinct just cause there's too many of them for me to reply to right now. But I do want to thank everyone who reviewed and especially to those who didn't lose faith that I'd continue it and placed it on your watch and alert lists. Of course, a special HUGE thanks to MsLessa.