Disclaimer: Wolfman, Perez, and Murakami own them. Go bug them.
Author's Note: Just a belated birthday gift to Mer Girl, who intrigued me with this pairing during one of our conversations. In my usual way, I'm taking the concept several steps further. Check the endnotes for those of the comic canon deprived. Those who actually know the canon, you get a cookie. I hope this intrigues you, dear.
Beta: My beta is busy currently, so patience.
Timeline: halfway though Sisters.
The multicolored lights of the warehouse party glared down on the Titans. After some coaxing by Starfire's older sister, Blackfire, the quintet found themselves dazzled and dazed by the thumping music and the dancing teens.
"Step aside, Earthlings, the queen of the galaxy has arrived!" Blackfire boomed as she made way though the crowd, with all the Titans except Starfire following her. Raven eyed the path and noticed the lagging Tamaranian. The alien Titan hesitantly navigated through the dancers while getting jostled back and forth.
"Oh…excuse me…oh…uh." Starfire's foot was trotted upon by an unknown partygoer. "Ow! You really should apologize after stepping on someone's foot."
The empath simply nodded her head in disapproval before assimilating herself into the crowd. One partygoer in the background particularly noted the two outlandish girls.
"Targets sighted. Proceeding with caution," he murmured to himself, touching his earpiece.
"Careful out there. You won't do us any good if they fry you," a male voice curtly replied.
"I'll be careful." He severed the link and slithered his way towards the Titans; Blackfire and the male Titans already swayed themselves to the rhythm. Both female Titans stared at a distance.
"This party is pointless," the gothic demoness spat out with the same distain she had at the carnival last night.
"I do not know, Friend Raven. It appears to be ritualistic of the human teenager—like the pimples or the Tamaranian ritual of Transformation."
"That's biology—you can't control that, but this you can walk away from. If anyone cares, I went on the rooftop to mediate." She left the bright Titan to her own devices and exited the ominous room.
"I agree with your friend—everything is pointless if you think about it." A lanky male teenager dressed in denim jeans, an onyx colored shirt, with hair to match and a dash of eyeliner approached Starfire from behind.
"That is incorrect; life is replete full of delightful possibilities. Such as the newborn kittens, the light of the sun, the seemingly infinite television programs like the "law enforcement and order", the…"
"You may think that, but life for me is a meaningless ordeal of events and one day, we shall die," the teenager drabbed on in his monotone.
The naïve alien's jaw nearly scrapped the ground. Of course, she heard a variation from Raven, but not as concave. If Raven spoke more, instead of lurking in the background, would this come out of her mouth as well?
"You should not contemplate such ideas. Life can not be meaningless if you select the correct pathway and choices."
He peered at her doe eyes. "You sound like a true believer."
"A true believer? Forgive me as I am novel to this planet and not learned all your customs and wordings yet."
"Novel? You sound it. A true believer is someone that believes in the greater good, despite things to the contrary."
"Then that is who I am," the headstrong alien stated, with a modicum of pride.
"You really aren't like anyone from around here, are you?" His pitch altered to a livelier one.
"No, I am from the stars. I am amazed why more people are not off of put by that."
"People are blasé. They see what they want to see when they want to see it, unless it clashes with their conformist views," he observed.
"Does that occur with you while you dress like the Visigoth?"
He wandered in confusion. "Huh?"
"Your raiment in black and your liner of eyes—the style of the neo Visigoth?"
Now he comprehended her. "Oh. That's just Goth."
"I have a friend that has a predilection in that."
The goth boy arched an eyebrow. "Predilection, eh? Sounds intriguing. Is it that one you were speaking to before?"
"Yes, Friend Raven has a fondness for depressing poetry and cafés."
"I see," he sounded intrigued. "So why are you here?"
Starfire lowered her head in shame. "My sister. It was her idea we arrive here. I do not care for this location myself, yourself?"
"My friend egged me to go with him and my parents didn't care either way, so I went," he shrugged.
"I do not understand how eggs compelled you to go nor understand your parents' lack of concern of your whereabouts. Should you not be concerned of this?" The lighthearted Tamaranian declared astonished.
"Eggs don't have anything to do with me going—it's an expression. I went because I had nothing better to do and my parents didn't care; just as you didn't want to go but you did because of your sister, right? It's just the reverse," the partygoer harshly scolded. "You're an odd one, aren't you? You act like you care or something; you don't even know me."
"I do not believe I have yet conformed to the planet's standards, no. And I am a protector of the city now—of course I have to elicit concern for its denizens, whoever they are," she placed her hand over her heart in her vow.
"You're definitely strange. You want to get away from the party and talk or something?" He gestured to a dank and desolate corner in the background.
He leered at her posterior as she sauntered in front of him—he was a human male after all, with the appropriate raging hormones.
"So…do you like show tunes?" he blurted out as they arrived to their destination.
"Show tunes?" She blinked in bewilderment as she faced him.
"You know like the songs in Sweeney Todd? 'Swing your razor wide, Sweeney!' Or for something older, Oklahoma? 'Oh What a Beautiful Mornin'?" His face reddened in embarassment as she sustained her confusion.
"I am sorry. I still have more to learn of Earth culture. However, I may have an equivalent with a Tamaranian folk song, but I need my gorka pipes as they best accentuate the melody."
The teenager froze at hearing the phrase "gorka pipes". "That's okay. I'll be fine with the Earth version."
"As you wish but you would be mislaid out," she slyly avowed.
"So where are you from?"
Her eyes widen in her newfound ebullience. "I lived on a planet called Tamaran, in a far off galaxy. It is approximately twenty-six light years from your world and is in the Vegan System. That way." She pointed to a certain position above them.
"Wow. Why did you come here?"
Starfire deliberated how much truth could she solicit. "I crash-landed on your world by accident and I was pursued by the Gordonians. I was saved by my friends and for that, I vowed to be at their side. That is how I became a Teen Titan."
"I heard about you. Kinda messy, aren't you? I read about your work at the chemical plant."
"It was a necessary hazard as we had to enclose Plasmus." The alien's recollections stirred up the recent memories of vomiting Plasmus' patented protoplasm.
"I guess, but you keep that up, one of these days, it might be one of those Pyrrhic victory things."
"That's when you win but you really lose."
Her eyes lit with cogitation. "Ah, yes, I had researched that in some of your tomes, but the wording of Pyrrhic was difficult to form in the eye of my cerebral cortex."
"The mind's eye?"
"You seem rather well read compared to most Earthlings your epoch." Her emerald eyes scanned him.
"Oh, you mean age? Well, when you deal with misery that is existence, you need to read up on what makes it the wretched quagmire it is," the goth boy affirmed histrionically.
"Tell me—why is life so despondent for you? Unlike yourself, I find life gouged with so…"
"That's ok; I'm not in the mood for a 'life is good' speech."
"Then answer my query," the alien Titan commanded.
"What's the thing? You wake up and you find life to be a lie, your parents replaced by zombies, and you realize that…special girl dumped you for something called a Camano?" She gawked back in mystification.
"It's a car. Earth vehicle, what have you?"
"Ahh. I comprehend now."
"Yes, so I dedicated myself to see the darkness that lies within the human heart and expose it for the good of the world, with my poems and stories." He would not cease his melodramatic delivery. He brushed aside his obsidian hair, Starfire found that pleasurable for some reason.
"And what will you do once that occurs?"
He subtly panicked. "Well, I haven't gotten that far yet."
"Indeed, but once you accomplish that task, you will require more from your life, yes?"
He maintained his panic. "Uh…I don't know."
"I was once a slave, to live out a mechanical existence for the Citadel, but now the Titans have freed me and I have purpose now. What you need a fangled-new purpose."
He chuckled mirthlessly at her last line. "New-fangled and I don't know what I need right now."
"Then interrogate yourself and inquire if this life pleasing to you?"
He was silent for a moment. "No, it isn't."
"Can you not find another female who would not deposit you for a…Camano?"
"Dump me you mean? Well, no…are you always this…caring?" The word eluded his grasp.
"When I think the cause is just, yes. I confess that you are rather intriguing. I have never associated with one such as you," she responded in her empathic manner.
"Well, I got to admit you're quite a babe out of the woods, but I never met anyone like you either." The partygoer's face shifted to a crimson hue.
"I could require the uses of a tour guide of Earth culture and human performance, my friends may be occupied with our various deeds." She shuffled her feet and nearly blushed herself—this boy is captivating her, yet she does not know why. In some ways, the teenager resembles Robin but the Teen Wonder is too distracted with his being the Titan leader and currently her sister, perhaps this Earthling would make a decent proxy.
He sized her up as well—she was attractive, beautiful, and someone who didn't roll her eyes at his woe. "I don't really talk to people who act like Strawberry Shortcake or Rainbow Brite but I have nothing to lose. I never got around to knowing the Titans' name, so what's yours?"
"In your language, it would be called 'Starfire'. And yours?" Her honeyed words hummed.
He was ready to speak when a trio of the alien probes shattered through the windows above and encircled her in. The goth scurried off in his fright. Starfire caught his receding outline and powered her hands up in frustration.
"No. Fine, then we shall do battle."
As she and the other Titans charged off against the probes, he holed himself up in a shaded corner.
"What's the rush? You were going so well with her." The voice cut in.
"You may want to risk your life, but I don't. And yeah, I know. She is certainly not what I expected. Maybe I should have gotten to Raven after all," he said in wonder.
"No, you have a rapport. Keep reinforcing it and stop being just a coward."
"Don't make me go after your family," the voice raged in his most petrifying tone.
He relented. "Alright. I'll try to get her and give her my information."
"Good boy. Meet me after you're done." He heard a metallic squink as the voice disengaged.
He sighed as he promenaded back to their spot. In the aftermath, Starfire searched literally high and low for him.
"Oh, there you are. I was…concerned for your safety." She floated down to him. The proud Titan prayed the lights were low enough to shroud her appearing flush.
"Yeah, and my name is Franklin." He suddenly felt a tingling to his senses.
"Franklin. A pleasing sobriquet." She envisioned the name rolling off her tongue rather effortlessly.
"Yeah, I need a piece of paper to get your phone number or something."
"I do not possess a telephone, give me your information of contact—I'll find you," she purred in her aggressive spirit.
Franklin was taken aback by her aggressiveness. "Alright." He located a flyer positioned below his shoe.
"There we go." He yanked it off and held it up. "But I have no pen."
"Just tell me your information." He informed her of his phone number and she stimulated her index finger into a dull charge, and burned the information into the paper with stunning precision.
"There. I shall enjoy our next encounter." She evoked a warm smile as she handed him the slightly smoldering paper.
"Me, too," the goth boy stuttered out.
"Starfire!" Robin called out. She turned to eye him and an alien feeling besieged her while she glimpsed Franklin in her peripheral vision. She could not identity this sensation.
"Excuse me, please." She hiked off, leaving Franklin by his lonesome. He meandered his way out of the club, lost in his thoughts.
Franklin's new destination ended up him in another abandoned warehouse.
"I'm here," he rasped.
"Good. I have informed the Headmistress of your success. She is most pleased," the voice rang out and stepped out of the shadows. He was dressed in a deep heliotrope robe—the uniform of the H.I.V.E. Academy of Extraordinary Young People.
"Good for her," he stated sardonically.
"It will be, in time. Once your infiltration is successful, we shall then learn of their secrets and you will become a full ranked H.I.V.E. student," the agent resounded.
"At least our plan of planting moles and waiting for the Teen Titans to interact with the public is finally working. The Headmistress will be amused that you plied your charms on the bubbly alien instead of the gothic demon like we suggested."
"Life is funny like that," he rambled.
"Yes, and your over-the-top gothic drama was most enthralling—she'll be on your doorstep in no time."
Franklin made no response.
"At any rate, the Headmistress will want to speak to you personally after she returns from a trip to recruit the industrial saboteur, Slade Wilson to our clientele. I'll call you."
"Congratulations, Mr. Crandall. You have made a most wise decision and you'll have a glorious future with the H.A.E.Y.P."
The agent slinked back into the shadows and Franklin felt the moonlight dance on his features.
"Yeah, glorious future alright," he muttered to himself in the ensuing silence.
For those unfamiliar with comic canon, I'll sum up Franklin Crandall.
In New Teen Titans #16 (1982), Starfire began a whirlwind romance with Franklin Crandall, unaware that he was actually a hireling of the H.I.V.E., sent to learn the Titans' secrets. Franklin began to doubt his mission and confronted an H.I.V.E. agent concerning his loyalties. When Starfire brought the Titans to meet her new beau, they discovered he was murdered by the H.I.V.E.
Wonder Girl prevented Starfire from taking revenge on the H.I.V.E. agent who killed him, who in turn was eliminated by his own associates for disobeying orders. Robin and Wonder Girl later discovered that Crandall was working with the H.I.V.E., but mercifully decided to keep this information from the grieving Starfire. That's all you need to know and enjoy my 50th piece.
Leave a review if you wish and see you in the funny papers.