I'm back! Good God, I nearly forgot that I wrote fan fiction. Well more than three years and an English degree later have more than prepared me to continue. I hope I can at least finish this story, but I've been out of the game for a while and have a job writing now so we'll see how consistent it will be. Thanks to everyone who reads this, especially those of you who were reading three years ago. Hope you guys like it, cus I loved writing it. Don't forget to review at the end! Enjoy!
P.S. Special treat at the end for the long wait, courtesy of storytellersdaughter! (I might have mentioned it in a previous chapter, but who remembers?)
Disclaimer: Teen Titans characters and trademarked objects are not my property, but the original characters are mine and should not be used without my permission. Dem's da breaks!
Ch 8: Goodnights, but no Goodbyes
Robin, Starfire, Beast Boy, Raven, and J.D. all stared silently at Emily and Cyborg. Emily, having just finished her story, looked emotionally drained. Cyborg on the other hand, looked both sad and furious.
"You want me to drop this act then?" he yelled said as he stood up. "You want to see what I really am?! FINE!!!" he slammed his fists together, once again producing a near blinding blue light. When the flash faded, there stood Cyborg, metal limbs, blue circuitry, and glowing red eye all exposed. A pile of shredded black clothing lay next to him. "WHAT DO YOU THINK NOW THAT YOU"VE SEEN THE REAL ME?! HUH?!" he shouted at Emily who remained silent as she took it all in.
"…..AWESOME!" she yelled ecstatically. "You look even cooler in person! How do you project a hologram that can bend to your form and still take reflectivity and alteration into account?! What frequency range is your eye able to detect?! What's the power ratio of your cybernetic motors?! Oh, oh, can I see the sound cannon?!?!"
"Wait…what!?!" Cyborg exclaimed in utter bewilderment.
"Oh please. You think I'm that dense?" she asked with a grin, pulling a newspaper clipping featuring a picture of f the Titans out of her pocket and showing it to him. "Do you think anyone in the city doesn't know the Teen Titans? What are the odds that four of them would go somewhere and bring along a normal fifth person who looks almost exactly like the missing member?" Cyborg was dumbfounded. "I mean you're CYBORG! You're my favorite Titan!"
"You…you knew the whole time?"
"Yeah, pretty much." she said smiling. "I figured you must have had a good reason. I just wanted to find out what that reason was." Cyborg clenched his jaw and tightened his fists.
"So you we just screwing with me?!" he yelled at her. "This was just some kind of game to make me admit who I really am?!"
"Well, yea." she replied frankly. Cyborg's jaw tightened even more. Everyone could see that he was at his limit. But she just grinned. "But let's not forget who started the game with their holo-emitters, career in security, and avid love of amplified sonic techno." Cyborg, still shaking with rage, opened his mouth wide, obviously intent on taking it out on her. But no sound came out. He just stood there, mouth agape, staring daggers at Emily. Slowly his mouth closed and his gaze softened.
"I know." he said raising a hand to his eyes. "I know. I've never really gotten close to anyone besides my friends. There just doesn't seem like there's room in my life for anything else. The closest things I've ever had to a relationship since the accident involved a deep cover mission or a time portal." Emily glanced quizzically over at Raven. Raven slowly shook her head and mouthed "Don't ask."
"It seems like that damn accident stole everyone who cared about me. It took my mother right off the bat. I couldn't even look at dad anymore, not until it was too late anyway. And my girlfriend even left the minute she saw me like this. So what am I supposed to think? That if I'm just myself everything would work out?"
"Well being someone else really seems to be working out." she said, chuckling. "Doesn't sound like you think you have anything to lose. Am I right?"
"What do I have?" he asked sadly. Emily gave him a solid punch in the shoulder.
"Dumbass." she said through her grin. "Look around you." And he did, looking at all the reassuring faces around him. "You've got great friends, cool powers, you're a super hero for cripes sake! Not to mention, I hear tell there's a girl who's kinda into you." Cyborg cracked a small smile. "Rumor has it she's not bad looking either."
"I'd have to agree." he said in gentle tone she hadn't thought he was capable of. It surprised her, everyone in fact. Cyborg looked around the room again. The before supportive expressions had quickly changed. Beast Boy's mouth simply hung agape, as though he had heard his metallic companion speak for the first time. Robin was taken aback only slightly, but it was horribly offset by Starfire's enormous sparkling eyes and smile that all but radiated construction paper hearts. J.D. grinned wryly at this show of emotion, taking it as something emasculating. Raven smiled warmly. And Mark…well, Mark seemed ok with it. "What?" he defensively asked the staring faces. "I have feelings too. I'm not made of stone." Everyone in the room immediately thought of at least three things to say to that statement, but thankfully remained quiet. That is until, under duress of restraining himself, Beast Boy burst out laughing. Cyborg just grinned."Yeah, yeah, I get it."
"Alright." Emily declared. "Enough of the mushy stuff. I don't know about the rest of you guy, but this girl's ready to dance."
"Wondrous!" Starfire exclaimed.
"'Bout time." Beast Boy chimed in, getting up and heading for the door.
"Booyah!" Cyborg shouted, beginning to follow. Emily tried to maintain her composure, but couldn't completely hide the mild disgust on her face.
"He doesn't say that often, does he?" she pleadingly whispered to Raven. Raven just smiled to herself.
"First time I've ever heard him say it actually." Emily looked quite relieved.
"Good, I can't tell you how fast that would get old." she said, running to catch up.
"This is going to be interesting." Raven thought to herself. She could sense Beast Boy inwardly grinning. "You're overjoyed at how much you're rubbing off on me, aren't you?" She felt his internal smile widen.
After Emily reapplied her skin epoxy and Cyborg had thrown on the extra clothes he kept in the trunk of the T-Car, they Raven and Beast Boy got in the back seat, Emily in the passenger seat, and Cyborg the driver's seat, of course. Robin and Starfire again were on the motorcycle being followed by Mark and J.D. in Ed's stylish hearse. Emily gave concise directions to a place she claimed would be "perfect" for this group. After a short drive, they pulled up in front of, what could only be described as, a castle. There were turrets, crenulated walls, even a drawbridge and mote. What set this castle apart, though, were the spotlights shooting up from the towers and from either side of the drawbridge portcullis, the throbbing beat of techno emanating from within, and the stone-carved sign over the archway that read "Otranto".
"Okay." Cyborg began, sounding frustrated as he got out of the car and once again armed the security. "Are we really supposed to believe that there's a castle night club right here in the middle of Jump, and we never knew about it? Does this weird anyone else out?"
"Aside from everything else that's happened tonight, you were in a dungeon café like ten minutes ago." Raven said matter-of-factly. "Is this really that weird?" Cyborg still held some suspicion, but had no retort.
"I love it when my lady lays down the hard truth." Beast Boy said through a smile, throwing his arm around Raven. "Especially, when it's not me for once." Raven rolled her eyes, but still smiled warmly. Emily gently took Cyborg's hand. But as he looked down to her, he was already being pulled towards the drawbridge.
"What do you say we get this party started?" she yelled to the group. They all shouted their agreement, that is except for Mark. He just…was Mark. "Teen Titans and Cast of Amontillado are in the house!" She yelled to entrance of the club, the rest of the group following close behind. "Let's show'em how it's done!"
- - MONTAGE TIME! - - -
Starfire pulling robin onto the dance floor. He teasingly leaned away, but wore a boyish smile that said he would do anything, if she but asked.
Raven and Beast Boy doing a mock-tango, rose in Raven's teeth and all, trying their best to keep straight faces.
Cyborg performing an overly exaggerated hat-off bow to Emily who likewise curtsied to her dance partner.
J.D. dancing with four petite girls at once, his massive arms reaching around all of them.
Mark doing the robot with an enraged Cyborg pointing and yelling at him.
Robin upside-down, mid side-flip, and an elated Starfire who clapped in praise and delight.
Beast Boy and Raven mid dance to a heavy beat techno song, both their eyes closed, their bodies lost in the rhythm.
A grinning Emily and an expressionless Mark swing dancing together.
Robin and Starfire slow dancing, cheek to cheek, their arms around each other. Starfire's eyes were closed and she wore and small content smile. Robin, however, was blushing horribly, looking more uncomfortable than ever. Raven and Beast Boy danced together in the background, smiling at the couple's first slow dance.
Emily and Cyborg arm wrestling, both looking as if they were putting a lot of effort into it as everyone around them cheered them on.
Cyborg on the floor, with the broken table underneath him. Everyone else looked a bit shocked, that is except for Emily and Beast Boy who both laughed wildly, holding their sides.
Beast Boy and Raven passionately kissing in a corner of the club.
The group of eight all on the dance floor, happily dancing with one another.
It was nearly four in the morning when they finally left the club, which had stayed open an extra hour because the Titans were there. J.D. Had left from the club to return Ed's hearse to the Amontillado as his apartment wasn't far from there. Starfire had actually fallen asleep mid-slow dance in Robin's arms, so he was taking her back to Titan Tower on his bike. This left the rest of the group, who were going to drop Emily and Mark off at their shared apartment in the T-Car before heading back home. They were now parked in from of the twins' rather plain-looking apartment building. Cyborg had learned enough lessons about deceiving appearances to question the seeming normality of this place. Raven and Beast Boy said their goodbyes to Mark and Emily in the car before they got out and Cyborg walked them to the front door. Mark unlocked the door and stepped inside, leaving Cyborg and Emily gazing at one another on the stoop. Their glances varied wildly, everything from mischievous grins, to wanting stares, to looks of profound understanding. They gazed for what seemed like hours, before realizing that Mark was still standing in the doorway, wearing a stare of his own. Cyborg was embarrassed, frustrated, and above all things, confused by this.
"Is…is he ok?" he asked her.
"Oh, he's fine." she said smiling. "He's just a little protective." She gave him a momentary glance. He paused for a moment, but began slowly closing the door, never breaking eye contact with Cyborg. The moment before the door closed, Cyborg could swear he saw a flash cross Mark's right eye, before it completely closed with a quiet click. A cold shiver went up his metal spine.
"I don't have anything to worry about, do I?" he asked with a hint of concern. She only grinned and put her arms on his shoulders.
"I don't know." she said coyly before pulling herself clear off the ground by Cyborg's shoulders. "Do you?" she whispered before playfully planted her lips on his. Though taken by surprise, he was smart enough to put his arms around her waist to support her. She slowly pulled her lips away and stared into his eyes. "Believe it or not, under all that hardware and emotional baggage, I can still see that little boy I loved so much." Cyborg didn't know what to say. He could only stare back, returning her small, warm smile. She leaned in and gave him a soft peck on the cheek before raising a foot to his chest and pushing off, simultaneously breaking his hold on her and doing a graceful backflip to the ground. "Let's hope I'm right." she said grinning, blowing him a kiss with two fingers, and running in after her brother. Shocked, Cyborg could only stand there, trying to comprehend what had just happened. Fuming, he stomped by to the T-car, got in, and drove off.
"What is wrong with that girl?" he asked angrily. "Is she warped or just grade-A crazy?" There was a short pause before he calmly asked, "So, Raven, you know when Emily has a day off?" Receiving no answer, he tilted the rear view mirror down, seeing that the two had fallen asleep on one another. He just grinned and kept driving. "What a crazy night." he said to himself. "I hope we get more like'em."
Having returned to the tower, Robin got off the bike and looked at the still sleeping Starfire still laid over the front of the bike. He just smiled to himself, incapable of thinking how adorable she was. He gently took her helmet off, picked her up, and carried her to the elevator. On the ride up, she curled up even tighter, nuzzling her head into his chest. He felt himself blush and his heart beat faster. Then he wondered why he was so nervous, remembering Raven's words. He did like her and she liked him and nobody was judging them for it. In fact, they were happy for them. He felt his heart slow down and the excess blood drain from his face. He just enjoyed the feel of her against him; her frail weight against his arms, her slow, rhythmic breathing against his stomach, and her head gently rubbing against his chest.
They reached the living quarters level and he carried her out across the living room and slowly veered left towards their rooms. He opened the door to her room and entered. He made his way over to her bed and laid her down. He took her boots off for her and then pulled the covers up over her. As he did so, she quickly, but tenderly put her arms around his neck and pulled him close. Now Robin felt he had reason to freak out a little. He tried to pull out of her grip, but her Tamaranian strength, even while asleep, was too much. Her eyes slowly opened. He had thought that she would be embarrassed at the situation, but she only smiled. He didn't see even the faintest hint of shame, fear, or doubt. She reached a hand around to the back of his head and pulled him into a deep kiss. In this kiss, Robin could feel all of her confidence, and was finally able to share it. He returned the kiss and all of the feelings that he had harbored for so long. They broke their kiss only when they both realized they needed air. The both gasped and lightly laughed.
"Thank you for tonight Robin." she said sweetly, putting her arms back around his neck.
"I should be the one thanking you Star. You've been so patient with me all this time. I'm just sorry that it-." she cut him off by putting a finer to his lips and smiling.
"We will have many other opportunities to talk about such things. But right now, I think we need to get some sleep." He smiled back at her.
"Alright Star, I'll head to bed. Good night." He gave her a soft kiss on the forehead and began to leave. But he was stopped when she grabbed hold of his wrist. He looked back at her, confused.
"I believe I said that we need to get some sleep." Robin blushed again.
"You…and me…in the same bed." he stammered.
"If you do not wish to…" she said, slightly crestfallen. Robin mentally slapped himself. He was not going to let anymore good things get away from him because of his cautious trepidation.
"No, it's not that." he said warmly. "I just need to change." He could see the sheer elation in her eyes. "I'll be right back." He left for his own room and quickly changed into a white tank and red pajama bottoms. As he exited his room and walked down the hall towards her room, Raven and Beast Boy turned down the hallway. He froze. They continued towards him and stopped a few feet away, looking a little confused.
"Are you alright?" Raven asked. He could only muster a nervous nod. Beast boy noticed his attire and the direction he was headed in. He nudged Raven and nodded in the direction of Starfire's room. An impish grin crossed both their faces.
"Going somewhere?" Beast Boy asked teasingly. Robin looked flustered.
"It's not what you think!" he spat out quickly. "We're just sleeping together! Wait, no!" Raven and Beast Boy both laughed.
"It's cool bro." Beast Boy said as he and Raven began walking past him towards their shared room. "Even if we were the judgmental type, we're not exactly in a good place to talk."
"Just enjoy yourself for once, and make sure to treat her how she deserves to be treated." Raven said as Beast Boy opened the door. "Goodnight Robin."
"Night dude." Beast Boy said.
"Night guys." Robin said sheepishly as they went in and closed the door. "And thanks." he whispered after them. He got back to her room and opened the door. The lamp on her nightstand was now on. She had changed into a pink T-shirt and shorts and sat on the edge of the bed. They smiled at one another. Robin slowly made his way back to her bed. It hadn't felt nearly this far when he had first carried her in. He slowly got on the bed. She crawled over and got under the covers. He got under them with her, still feeling a little anxious. After he had gotten comfortable, she cuddled up next to him, laying her head on his chest. She reached over and turned off the lamp before returning to her nuzzling.
"I have one more thing to ask." He chuckled.
"Sure, anything." She paused for a moment.
"Could…could you take off your mask?" She felt him tighten up slightly after uttering the last word. A thousand thoughts rushed through his mind about how long he had struggled to earn this mask, to keep it on, and what was at stake if it should come off. But he quickly realized that there was really only one thought in his mind, and it made his concerns about his mask seem infantile. She felt him relax after a moment of silence. He reached up, slid the mask off, and placed it on the night stand. He then leaned down and gently kissed her on the top of her head. He felt a single tear trickle down her face and on to his hand. He smiled and held her just a little tighter.
"I think today went pretty well." Beast Boy said as he laid in bed while Raven changed for bed in the bathroom.
"Considering everything that could have happened?" she shouted from behind the cracked door. "I'd say we're lucky it went as well as it did."
"No reward without a little risk." he said grinning. She emerged from the bathroom in a blue tank top and baggy pajama bottoms.
"That's not a terribly enlightened view." she said plopping down next to him and giving him a long kiss. "But I can't help but think that you being enlightened could mean horrifying things for this plane of reality."
"And all my knock-knock jokes would be in haiku. Who wants that?"
"You're such a dork." she said laughing and giving him a gentle smack on the head. He laughed and pulled her in for another kiss.
"Love you Rae." he said softly thought a wide smile.
"Love you too, dork." she said grinning. She laid her head on his shoulder, kissed it gently and cuddled up against him. He reached over and turned off their lamp, kissed her on the head, and let the thought of many more days like this one carry him off to sleep.
Hope you guys liked it. I had a lot of fun revisiting this project and finally getting it finished. I'm actually really happy with the ending. Might even get on that prequel I talked about, but no promises. Anyway, big thankyou's all around to everyone who read and extra props to those who read it when I first put it up three years ago (man that seems like forever ago). As a special treat (again, if you don't already know) I actually got some fanart done on the first story "Love Makes Fools of Us All" by the delightful (and I hear tell beautiful) storytellersdaughter. Here are the links:
Leave her some good reviews if you get the chance. And, as always, I love your reviews, opinions, or anything else you might want to say to me. You guys are the reason I came back to this and why I'll keep writing so please let me hear what you have to say. Here's hoping we meet again. Peace and Love :P