Well, here it is. The final chapter. It's quite a relief, actually. To finally be done with it after almost three years. Or four years. I can't remember. Anyway, thanks for all the reviews. See ya!
Epilogue: Such Great Heights
"Guys?" Raven said as she walked into the main room. The other four Titans turned and looked at her. The team had changed a lot in the five years since Em had left. They were all in their early twenties, and they were no longer the Teen Titans. They were just the Titans.
Robin had gotten much taller. He wore a uniform of black with a blue bird emblazoned across the chest. His hair was growing out, hanging near his shoulders, but he kept it in a ponytail. He was formally called Nightwing, but the team still called him Robin.
Starfire had barely changed. She had grown up quite a bit physically, but she was still light-hearted and joyous, and still wore plenty of purple. Perfect as she was, as Em put it. She and Robin had been married for just over a year. The couple had been quite sad that Em hadn't come to their wedding, but not surprised since they had no idea where she was and therefore no idea where to send an invitation. Raven had sensed a familiar aura somewhere in the area for a minute or two, but it was drowned out by Starfire's insane happiness and Robin's excitement. And Cyborg could have sworn he saw a strange young woman at the back of the sanctuary for just a moment.
Beast Boy had grown. He had some actual muscle and was nearly as tall as Robin. But he was still green and still mischievous. He had moved on from his purple attire, leaving the Doom Patrol behind him and adopting a new red and white uniform. Though he was known publicly as Changeling, the team still called him BB.
Cyborg, if possible, had gotten even more imposing. His human half had kept growing from his teenage years, and he modified his robot half to match. He had mellowed a lot, but he still couldn't resist an eating contest or a bout of video games.
Raven had matured and grown as well, though she looked the most unchanged of all of them. Her hair was long, and she wore a white cloak over her black uniform. She remained quiet and understated, but anyone who knew her could tell that she was happy.
"What is it, Raven?" Robin asked.
"I'm not sure," she replied slowly. "Something... I think we should head to the city."
The Titans didn't argue. They all piled into the T-Car and sped off into the heart of Jump City. Raven gazed pensively out the window.
"We're close, park here," she said when they neared the shopping district. The sidewalks were crowded with people out for lunch or a day of walking and window-shopping. Raven began moving slowly down the sidewalk with the Titans close behind her. Her dark eyes slid over the crowd, trying to find what had been calling to her mind.
Then, she felt it. She stopped in her tracks and turned, gazing across the street. There was a young woman that stood out of the crowd on the opposite sidewalk. She was strolling along at a leisurely pace, bouncing a little as though she were dancing to some music in her head. Raven tilted her head a little in bewilderment.
The girl was slim and about the same height as her, not an inch over 5' 6". Long brown hair cascaded down to her lower back, shining in the midday sun. A dark blue bucket hat was clamped down over her head, casting the upper half of her face into shadow. She would occasionally pull the brim down over her dark sunglasses. All she was wearing was a white wife beater and some old jeans that looked a little too long for her, nearly covering her completely bare feet. An unassuming black messenger bag was slung across her shoulder. Her forearms clinked and jangled with bracelets, five on each arm, each one a different color. Red, blue, yellow, light blue, grey, brown, white, black, purple, and green. A simple black choker could be seen around her neck from under the long thin scarf she wore that hung down to her knees and fluttered behind her as she walked. Slinking along behind her like a shadow was a thin black cat.
Raven's eyes widened. The Titans all turned and looked at the girl. She stopped in her tracks, looked around for a moment, then turned and looked straight at them. She reached up and hooked a finger over her sunglasses, pulling them down the bridge of her nose to get a better look at the Titans. Raven gasped as her gaze met a very familiar pair of ghost white eyes. The girl smiled and walked across the street, stopping in front of them.
"Hey guys," she said easily. After a moment, she raised an eyebrow, hands on her hips. "Um, all this staring can stop anytime now."
Raven finally spoke.
"Em," she said slowly.
"Raven," she replied. "How've you been?"
"Not so good, actually," she said. "A good friend of mine has been missing for five years. Any idea where I can find her?"
Em smiled. "She might be closer than you think."
Raven stared at her for a moment. Then, she grabbed Em in a ferocious hug. Em laughed.
"Missed you," she said, hugging the empath tightly.
Raven pulled back and held her at arm's length. She smiled. "Welcome home, Emily Sanders."
Em grinned and hugged her again. She looked over Raven's shoulder at the rest of the Titans, smiling at her. She finally let go of Raven and faced all of them.
"So, who are you people and what have you done with the Teen Titans?" she asked, smirking.
Starfire let out a shriek of laughter and launched herself forward, grabbing Em in a hug that was noticeably less bone-crushing than she remembered. Em pulled back from her, confused. Starfire just smiled, waiting for her to notice. When she did, Em's eyes went wide. She looked between Robin and Starfire quickly, an enormous smile spreading on her face.
"Oh my god!" she finally shrieked, pulling Starfire into another hug. "Oh my god! Star, look at you! How far along are you?"
"Seven months," Starfire laughed, overjoyed by Em's reaction.
Robin beamed. "Yep, a little girl," he said quietly.
Em pulled back and looked at him. "A girl? Coming from you two, she's going to be beautiful! And Star, wow, you look amazing. I can only tell from the side..."
"We are going to name her Annie," Starfire said with a smile.
Em stopped, staring at them. Her eyes went wide and she didn't seem to know what to say. "Oh... you don't have to..."
"We were going to name her Emily, but we figured it would be confusing if you came back," Robin added.
Em was speechless. She just smiled and gave Robin a hug, needing to stand on her toes to do so.
"The wedding was beautiful, by the way," Em added mysteriously as she pulled away from the two of them. They looked at each other in surprise before breaking into nearly identical smiles.
Em was in the process of sizing up Cyborg. "So what... you're like twelve feet tall now?" she joked, punching him in the elbow because it was closer than his shoulder.
"Seven feet and proud of it," Cyborg replied, placing a hand on her head and crouching down. "Looks like you haven't grown an inch."
Em drew herself up to her full height. "I happen to have grown three inches, thank you," she sniffed, unable to restrain her grin. He bent down and wrapped her in a big metal bear hug.
"Great to have you back," he said quietly.
"Great to be back."
Finally, she turned to Beast Boy. He was smiling mischievously at her.
"Changeling, is it?" she asked sarcastically, smirking.
"For you, it's still Beast Boy," he replied smoothly, wiggling his eyebrows.
Em laughed. "You haven't changed much, have you? I mean, apart from the growth spurt," she muttered. "I actually have to look up to you now."
Beast Boy just kept grinning. "I have a surprise for you too," he blurted out. Em tilted her head a little, raising an eyebrow. "It's on Raven's finger."
Em whirled around to face Raven, who smiled shyly and held out her left hand. Em grabbed it, stared for a few seconds, and let out a scream that made passers-by stare. She was once again hugging Raven.
"Oh my god you're getting married!" she shrieked. Raven was rather alarmed and didn't know what to say, so she just smiled. Em whirled around again and lunged at Beast Boy, hugging him too. "You're engaged! Oh my god!"
Em stood facing the Titans again, unable to stop smiling. She looked at all of them. Robin with his arm around the waist of Starfire, his pregnant wife. Cyborg, an already proud uncle with a hand on Starfire's shoulder. Raven with her hand in Beast Boy's. And she just kept smiling.
"Here," Robin said suddenly, holding something out to her. Em looked at it for a moment before taking it into her hands, smiling as though recalling a fond memory. It was her old communicator. "That belongs to you."
Em looked up at them again. "Well," she said after a while. "Looks like you have a Second Sixth Titan again."
The Titans smiled. Em scooped Cat up from the ground and turned toward the bay. Shining in the evening sun was her home, Titans Tower. Someone tugged on her shoulder and she turned. Raven smiled at her.
"Come on," Robin called, waving her toward the T-car where the rest of the Titans were already headed.
"Let's go home," Raven said quietly.
Em smiled. "Yeah... let's go home," she agreed, following the Titans to the car.
As soon as she was buckled in, the Titans began pelting her with questions. Where had she been? What was she doing? How was she? Anything big happen?
So Em began to tell her story.
But in the back of her mind, she wasn't thinking about the past five years.
She was thinking about the place she would be sleeping that night. Her bed in her room in her Tower surrounded by her family.
Emily Sanders smiled contentedly.
Em, the Second Sixth Titan, was finally home.