Part One - Her Eighteenth Birthday
None of these characters are mine, but it'll take more than that to slow me down...
Rated PG-13, Beast Boy/Jinx pairing, and knowing me, they'll be LOTS of naughty goings on. Robin/Raven action down the road.
Beast Boy was less concerned by his own blindness, as he was the panic in Jinx's voice.
"O-okay. W-we're on the thirtieth floor. I-it looks to... ugh, be... mostly office cubicles. No... nobody seems to be up here." she stammered, her breathing labored and strained.
"Not surprising." he whispered, each breath a new type of agony, "Must be close to midnight."
His eyes destroyed by one of the biovore's acid sprays, his other senses accelerated to pick up some of the slack, but were still having a tough time of it. Even though by his count they'd climbed a dozen flights of stairs, he could sense that the creature was only three floors below them. It was hunting them, possibly slowing for other prey, but on their trail none the less. He took a deep breath, then another. Keep it together. If you're cool, she'll stay cool. If she stays cool, you both get out of this alive.
"How you doing Jinx." he asked, though he already suspected the truth.
"F-fine." she wheezed, "J-just a little winded, I think."
He chuckled, "Girl, this is no time to put on a brave front. You were in rough shape when I found you, so I KNOW you gotta be hurting now."
"Oh, uh well. Yeah, I guess I've felt better." and she gave a nervous chuckle, "I think I got hit with some nerve gas in the basement-"
"Nerve gas?! What the hell?" he gasped.
"Well... I- okay, I'll be honest with you. I don't REALLY know what was going on here. The H.I.V.E. always has a lot of irons in the fire, so nobody knows everything that goes on. I was just told to report to this office tower and speak to the Subaltern. Next thing I know, every alarm in the world is going off and this gigantic flesh blob is killing everything in sight. I guess one of the drones panicked and hit the isolate-kill protocol."
Beast Boy was silent as she spoke, more to conserve his own energy than anything, "Okay, that makes sense. All right, let me tell you what I know. This building has been under surveillance for about seven months by... uh, a law enforcement agency." he smiled, "Your H.I.V.E. buddies built this pile right. None of the windows open in or out and are made of reinforced lead crystal. Looks pretty normal for this office block, but was almost impossible to penetrate by normal means."
"T-they sent you to break in?' she asked unsteadily.
"Yeah. I've been in a few times already. That's why we aren't dead yet...(ow)... I'm not wasting our time on... dead ends... ugh, If we can get to the roof, we're cool." he groaned.
They needed to stop and they both knew it, so Beast Boy said, "Okay, I got a plan. Is there a kitchenette or bathroom close by on this floor?"
"Bathroom over to your left." she said.
"Perfect, get me in there quick." he sighed, "By the way, what's your name?"
"Jinx." she said incredulously, "Oh you mean... Um, Jennifer. Jennifer Catherine Simone."
"Ah, that makes sense. It's... been my experience that... pretty girls have pretty names." he smiled.
"Oh, um thanks." she giggled, "And yours?"
"Gar Logan. How old are you?" he asked, having a much harder time ignoring the pain. Keep her busy, keep her alert he thought.
"I'll be eighteen tomorrow." she said softly.
"No shit?" he grinned, "Okay Jenny, I'll make you a promise. I have a plan to get us out of here, but we have to work together and we both need to give 100 effort. You think you can do that? You do, and I swear to you, I'll take you out to dinner for your birthday. Someplace nice too. But you gotta help me to help us, okay? You give me your best, and it's a four star restaurant tomorrow night."
She laughed, "Ah I see. Before it was saving our skins, but NOW I have something to shoot for."
"Exactly. What do you like to eat?" he said, the pain making it herder to think.
"Oh, um... let's see," she said leading him into the ladies rest room, "I like Italian and Spanish cooking. Oh, and Thai food. I love Thai cooking. Okay, we're in the bathroom."
"Good. Now fill one of the sinks with water- No, never mind, just take me to one of the toilets. That'll be quicker" he wheezed.
"The toilet? What are you up to?" she asked.
"I'm... I'm gonna change into something with no eyes. Hopefully when I change back, my genetic memory will reconstruct me in one piece. Hopefully. Toilets not my first choice, but we're short for time. Now, I need you to run out into office and find me something to eat, ANYTHING will do. I just need something. I burned a lot of energy off fighting the big booger the first time, so I need some quick carbs. Raid all the desks for candy."
"Are you-" she began.
"It'll be fine. Just give me a minute and I'll be right out." he smiled weakly, "Remember, Birthday dinner."
Reluctantly, she backed out of the stall and headed for the door. The exhaustion of this day was beginning to catch up to her, but Beast Boy's confidence was almost infectious. Out in the office, she craned her head about to take in any sound at all, and finally satisfied herself that she was alone. Moving quickly, she found a canvas handbag and began going from desk to desk looking for comestibles, the forth one yielding a candy dish full of Snickers minis. Despite working for the H.I.V.E., it was somewhat against her nature to poke into other peoples things, even in an emergency, and looking through the desks of all the office personnel had an odd thrill to it.
Like most H.I.V.E. front operations, almost all who worked in this building were neither H.I.V.E. operatives, nor even knew of the H.I.V.E.'s activities here. As such, these desks contained the circumstantial evidence of the everyday lives of everyday people. Photos and momentos, she saw a dozen or so families at their family best, in picnics, parks and campgrounds. She saw boastful smiles of proud fathers and eager expressions of hopeful youth. That is what hit her the most. These teens lived out lives that she'd never got the chance to enjoy. Five years now with the H.I.V.E., and nothing to show for it but a criminal record and several embarrassing scars.
Putting aside the woulda, coulda, shoulda beens, she continued her snack safari, even considering the sugar cubes by the coffee maker. Oh what she wouldn't give for a cup right then, but fastidious office onions had not only poured out the old pot, but cleaned and neatly sorted it's pieces as well. The bag half full, she was ready to find Beast Boy. Wasn't he done in the bathroom yet? Just as she was congratulating herself on her foraging, she looked up just in time to see the biovore flop into the room out of one of the ceiling vents with a load, wet plop.
It was bigger now to be sure, but now it was more... structured. Where before it seemed like an unlikely assortment of meats stitched together into a rough working model of a life form, now it showed forethought and cunning in it's design. A tiny part of her opined that it had learned a thing or two from all the people it had so recently eaten. She stood petrified as it unsteadily got to it's feet (numbers seven and eight seeming somewhat uncooperative), and took in it's new surroundings. The cubicle walls would provide absolutely no protection what so ever and the desks and furniture would no doubt be a greater obstacle to her that her pursuer.
Jinx began to cry softly as she'd finally reached that point where all hope had just about been exhausted, and she sagged a little as she closed her eyes. Please, just let it be quick, she thought. She listened to her heartbeat and tried not to imagine it getting closer. Suddenly, a mighty roar from across the room brought her back to the real world, and she opened her eyes just in time to see a huge green mountain gorilla charge up to the biovore and douse it with a large bucket of liquid. The creature shuddered and seized up as the liquid pain sunk into every opening, which sent it flailing about in all directions, evidently in a great deal of pain from a source it couldn't understand.
Changing back into his true form, Beast Boy raced over, grabbed her hand and bolted for the stairwell, "C'mon!"
"You're-" she began.
"Why didn't you tell me there was a cleaning cart sitting there in the bathroom? Not a lot walking the planet can take a face full of bleach." he laughed, as he looked over at her, "Oh yeah, like the new eyes?"
"They're gorgeous!" she grinned.
Ducking into the stairs, he grabbed from her forage bag as they ran upwards and furious ate through her findings.
"I-I hope these are enough. There didn't seem to be a lot of sweet tooths at this place." she smiled hopefully.
"Just decide what you want to eat tomorrow night, birthday girl." he said with a wink as he grabbed another Milky Way bar from the bag. Four more flights up, he stopped her on the landing.
"Okay, I'm feeling much better now. Time to get the hell out of here. You okay?" he asked as he took her hands in his.
Nodding weakly, she grinned as she began to truly believe that they'd survive the night. "It's traveling through the air ducts. That's how it got in down there."
"Yeah, I know. Ultra Police Riot squads have got the entire lower section of the building secured, so it's stuck in here too. The trick is though, we're way smarter than it is. It's figured out that we were headed for the roof, so it's probably already there waiting. But we're going out through here." he said, opening the fire door into another office floor. Listening carefully, he took her hand and quietly led her over to face the massive pane of the bay window.
"Okay birthday girl, I need you to jinx the supports holding the pane of glass in place. That's all. I can handle it from there. Just weaken it enough for me to push it out, and we're home free. Can you do that?" he asked in a whisper, massaging her shoulders in time with his words.
Severely weakened by the effects of the nerve gas, she nodded and concentrated on the task, his gentle ministrations marking time. Her magic was science, as holding her hands aloft, she cast her mind out into the room. Slowly, all matter within this space began to sing to her, each movement of each atom another voice to the chorus. She became aware of everything in the room as a series of probabilities, their strengths and weakness' revealed.
Looking at the supports for the lead crystal panes of glass, she sensed that they had a less than 2 chance of spontaneous critical failure. She raised it to 92. With a groan, the pane seemed to shift a bit in the frame. "Nice!" he whispered, giving her shoulders a little squeeze.
Stepping forward, he gingerly pressed a hand against the pane and applied a light pressure, and felt it rock in it's frame.
Smiling, he said, "Okay then, I'm going to hope that they've cordoned off the street below." and she returned his smile as she fidgeted from foot to foot.
Before little else could happen, the fire doors to the stairwell burst open, the biovore spilling angrily into the room. Apparently blind itself now, it snarled and lashed out in every direction. Grabbing her arms, Beast Boy swung Jinx onto his back with the plea, "Hold on tight!"
Shifting into a massive Indian elephant, he charged forward, butting the glass pane with his large, flat head sending it flying out into the night, and without breaking pace, Jinx and elephant tumbled out right after it. With a bestial roar, their pursuer dashed out after them, evidently unaware of where exactly it was they'd escaped to. Quickly shifting into Pterodactyl form, Beast Boy caught an updraft and proceeded to glide smoothly out from between glass and monster. Soaring majestically up into the night skies of Jump City, they heard the dull, distant crash of monster and glass onto the empty pavement of 17th Avenue.
One more loop de loop (just in case the press was there), and they glid to a smooth stop atop the Wayne Industries building over on Parker and West Ave. Laughing and barely able to contain herself, Jinx hugged and danced with Beast Boy on the roof, giggling all the while. She'd truly believed that she'd never live to see her eighteenth birthday, but Beast Boy had been as good as his word. She pulled back from yet another jubilant hug to face his and look again into his brand new eyes, just as the clock tower over by city hall began to chime the midnight hour.
His eyes were green, tending down towards gold, and clear. She could see herself in these bright eyes, and maybe something else. Leaning forward, he pressed his lips softly to her and whispered, "Happy Birthday, Jenny." as he hugged her close, but this time more deliberately. Returning his embrace, she whispered, "Thank you for saving me." which earned her another kiss.
"Hey, that was a team effort. You pulled my butt out of the fire too." he smiled, serving her another heaping helping of those eyes. "You wanna meet at the tower, or should I swing by H.I.V.E. headquarters to pick you up?"
Laughing, she quieted and kissed him again, "Let's meet at the restaurant. I think Thai is the dinner of choice. Okay?"
"Sounds good to me." he smiled, kissing her again, each hoping that dinner was just the beginning of the evening.
Fade to black...
To Be Continued...
This one is going to go in some odd directions, but stick with it, I think you'll enjoy it.
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