Doppelganger Non Grata
Notes: This is not a lemon or an unsavory fetish fic, but it may seem like one at first. You are forewarned and I am not responsible for any psychological scarring.
Not that anyone cares, but I wrote this chapter listening to the Silent Hill 3 song 'Letter from the Lost Days.'
Part I: Trickster
Chapter 1: Control
Silence was to Raven what cute little puppies were to others. It was something reassuring, something reliable in the universe. A comforting thing that you could always rely on to be there and make your day a little brighter. So, when Starfire's latest bizarre culinary experiment ("Friend Raven, please, what is the difference between powder of baking and soda of baking?" Even Raven didn't exactly know the answer to that one, but she knew it was bad to get them mixed up...) inevitably blew up half the kitchen and tried to eat the other half, she retired to her room with grateful haste, and let the sound of absolutely nothing happening wrap around her as warm and safe as a second cloak. Robin was helping clean up the mess, out of the goodness of his heart, of course. Beast Boy and Cyborg seemed to share Raven's opinion on the matter – if the love-birds wanted to flirt while letting the rest of them miss out on dull cleaning chores, then all the better for everyone.
She flopped on her bed with a sigh, staring up at the ceiling with a feeling of faint relief. Being around the rest of the team was always so stressful. In a good way, of course, but still, it was enervating. She never felt completely herself until she was alone again. She wondered sometimes if the other Titans felt that way too.
There was nothing to do, in a very pleasant sort of way. She could take a nap, if she wanted, or reread one of her favorite books, or listen to one of the cds her friends had given her for Christmas. She always skipped the loud, angry, growling tracks, but luckily the 'goth' music genre her friends had assumed she liked was also full of more ethereal, delicate vocal work that fitted her perfectly. She still owed Beast Boy a smack for the Marilyn Manson one, though. Ugh. Talk about not conducive to meditation. He tried his best, she knew, but he never really seemed to understand. It wasn't his fault they were two completely different people, she reflected with a tiny wry smile. If she were honest with herself she had a hard time understanding him, too. What was so fascinating about video games? And why did he like being the center of attention? And what made him think a giant maggot would make a good housepet?
Ah well, mysteries to solve another day.
Nothing to do, nothing to do... bask in the nothingness...
She was feeling a little, well.
There was always that, of course.
Why not? She'd already meditated today. She was feeling quite at peace with herself. She could handle it.
But first, she looked around the room very, very thoroughly, staring through the shadows into every nook and cranny.
"Beast Boy," she said just in case, "if you're in here as a fly again, you have five seconds to get out before I teleport you to a dimension where the tofu eats you."
Not a flicker of movement anywhere. Not a speck of green.
Whew. Couldn't be too careful, not after that little fly debacle with Malchior.
She closed her eyes, memories and their attendant emotions washing over her, mild but vivid. It wasn't without guilt that she accepted her continued longing for him, her desire to drink in the warmth of his body as she'd imagined it to be, and his silky voice speaking sweet things to her again. He was nothing like that. That had been all a game, a mask. Trickery. But it had been such wonderfully beautiful trickery, and she missed it even though she knew she could never have it back. Seduction worked on physical levels as well as emotional ones, and he had been the only person she had ever truly lusted after, in her quiet, dignified, timid little way. Lusting after a man built of paper, a series of mental images built from words in a book... well, it was pathetic, but it was all she'd ever had.
She imagined a world where things had gone differently, where Malchior had been sincere and become a Titan and professed his eternal love to her... and expressed it in ever so many ways...
It felt a little wrong, it felt just a bit sick and twisted and pathetic, but she didn't care. It was so easy to imagine how it could have gone another way. A better way. Her fingers roamed downwards, almost on auto-pilot as her daydreams carried her along.
After a while, as her imagination got carried away with things, the leotard was becoming more of a barrier than she liked, so she got rid of it. This process brought her out of the rapture enough to have another thought, an abberant flicker, a random shard from nowhere. Her hand paused between her legs as she turned it over in her mind musingly.
Why not use her magic instead?
Magic was ever so much more versatile. It could hit all sorts of nerves, all at once, at just the right pace. Better than a human hand could. She was still feeling very calm... well, okay, maybe kind of excited and a little shaky, with an odd lump in her throat, but she was totally in control. She levitated her leotard in the air and made it do a cartwheel to prove it.
She'd never used magic carnally before, not for that.
It could be fun.
Experimentation as a teenager was perfectly natural, she told herself, and this was a safer form of it than most of the things girls her age were doing.
She stretched out on her bed again, arms deliberately held up over her head and far away from her nether regions, closed her eyes, and muttered with a smirk the words that made all the magic happen.
"Azarath, metrion, zinthos."
She'd told Cyborg once that to manipulate something with her magic, she briefly became it, and it was true. She shared in the object's overall sensations, got a basic feeling of the object's nature and mood. This made using magic on herself a slightly exhilirating, if bizarre experience, like setting two mirrors facing each other. Through the magic she felt what she felt through the magic she felt what she felt through the magic...
Her first attempt at sensual self-manipulation via telekinesis was so delicate due to her uncertainty that she barely felt it, like the faintest brush of a hummingbird's feather. Then she decided it was safe to put a bit more effort in, just a bit, and felt the blackness caress her smoothly, like water with pressure to it, but pressure in all the nicest places. She repressed a grin and repeated the act, a bit firmer still, as rhythmically as any ocean tide, and squirmed with self-satisfied happiness at the sensations. This was going very well so far.
And then another thought struck her. She'd never been able to really penetrate because of the maidenhead, but magic could go right through that and straight to the relevant areas without hurting anything. It would be a bit trickier, a more involved procedure, but worth it, she was sure. One of her less respectable books had mentioned the differences between clitoral and vaginal orgasms and she'd always been intensely curious to find out how that applied to her. Energy expenditure would go up, but by now she was excited enough to not care, and to even embrace the idea of exhausting herself through the exercise.
She was completely relaxed, but somehow at the same time also completely tense, as she spoke the words again, more for ritual's sake than because she needed to. Rituals were important psychological tools.
"Azarath... metrion... zinthos..."
It was much more complicated, delving into her own body and manipulating something unseen. A tiny part of her brain, her inner Robin perhaps, wondered if she could learn anything from this that would be applicable to her healing abilities. But the vast majority of her was caught up in the simple 'physical' act and how it made her feel. It was good. She imagined it was Malchior instead, and that threw her passion into overdrive. It was hurting a little now, the strength and pace of it, but that was somehow good, too.
The orgasm snuck up on her and pounced like a hunting leopard, and for a brief few moments there was nothing to do but feel. Then it was over and she was panting a little, her brain momentarily overwhelmed and unable to command the magic to go for a second one right away.
And yet... the magic was going on.
Confusion was her first reaction, and then self-admonishment. Not being fully aware of her every command over her magic, even the subconscious ones, was shameful. The monks would have berated her sternly for such foolishness. Sins of the flesh, indeed. Her pride and sense of self-discipline both irked, she wrapped mental hands around the magic and urged it to a halt with iron strength.
That it inexplicably did not obey. In fact, it was doing the very opposite of what she commanded. The force and pressure were such now that the initially pleasurable pain was rapidly becoming distinctly uncomfortable.
Quelling a flash of anger at this shameful display, she focused with all her might on cooling her emotions down and fading the magic into nonexistence. Her control was iron, her control was steel. The magic was but an extension of herself, and her control over her self was absolute. She did not doubt this.
It got worse.
Her teeth gritted as she muffled a pained groan, eyes snapping open and body flailing in a manner that would probably have been ridiculous and funny in a different situation. What was going on here?! It wouldn't stop!
There was more pressure now, too, growing on her stomach and chest like weights of iron, and she was having trouble breathing. A tiny whimper escaped her throat as the pain grew sharper still, rapidly closing on to knife-like. And yet even through it, she had enough desperate pride for the foremost thought in her mind to be 'Oh God, please don't let one of the others come in and see me like this...'
That was, until she saw glowing red eyes hovering in the air above her, and a flicker of gleaming, smirking fangs just below them.
"No..." she whispered, a futile attempt to deny reality, to destroy a truth too suddenly horrible to accept, like lightning striking down a best friend on a clear day.
"Yesssss..." it whispered back at her, not with its mouth, but directly into her mind, as much a violation as anything else it was doing to her. The feel of it was like having her brain caressed with excrement-soaked razors, repulsive and agonizing.
No, no, no, NO!
She was Raven, of the Teen Titans. RAVEN! She'd defeated Malchior! Slade! Motherfucking Trigon! She wasn't going to let some pissant wraith of a demon manipulate her own freaking powers into-
Oh God, it hurt!
It was fire inside her now, and she rolled to the floor, writhing and clutching herself futilely.
The pain was everything, her whole world now. It allowed her no distraction, no mental foothold to grasp at meditative practices or anything else. She could no more use her own magic than she could have convinced Cyborg to become a vegetarian. Hurting, hating, afraid and ashamed, she let the thing do to her what it would, and waited an eternity for it to end.
And eternity did end, eventually, though not before she bled down her thighs.
Her powers (or could she truly call them hers, after they had been used so grossly by another being?) faded, and the demonic apparition with them, and she was left huddled on the hard floor, curled up against part of her blanket that she'd down with her. She remained like that for a long time, getting her breath back but not being able to stop the shaking, the steady throb in her groin washing over her like a heartbeat of acid.
For one truly mind-blowingly surreal moment, she wondered if this had been how it had happened to her mother. She wondered if her mother had felt the same.
It shouldn't have been possible. Demonic power or not, it shouldn't have been able to happen. She hadn't been repressing anything, her meditation had been perfect, she'd been in total control. And then... total lack of control, for no reason.
Demonic powers, weren't they?
She felt sick, and disgusted, and afraid of herself.
Somehow she had done something wrong, something horribly wrong, and literally fucked herself over.
She couldn't let the others know, of course. She had to work harder, meditate more, train her powers more. They couldn't know. There was no reason to tell them, it would only make them worry, and she couldn't bear to divulge such an awful thing. 'So, making another three-feet-long sandwich, Cyborg? That's pretty phallic, not that I'm saying you're making up for anything you might have lost during your, err, cyborgization, because that would be silly. Yeah, speaking of phallic things, I kinda accidentally raped myself with my own magic. Yeah. Demonic manifestation and all that. So I think I need to work on my mental exercises a whole lot more, and maybe get some therapy, and perhaps visit a gynecologist to make sure nothing's too damaged down there.' Yeah, she could have a conversation like that. Sure. Ugh.
The very thought of even trying to discuss it with Robin, who she knew would completely flip over it, and maybe even make her stop going on missions for 'psychological rehabilitation' or something equally inane, made her skin crawl.
No, they wouldn't know. They didn't have to and nothing good would come of sharing any of it with them. This shame was hers to bear alone.
Sometimes, just sometimes, people really were alone.
She stumbled to her feet and rummaged around for a box of tissues to clean the blood up with. It had gotten on the blanket and her cloak, and would stain horribly unless she used magic to clean it.
Great fear clenched at her chest and squeezed with fingers of ice as she wiped her thighs and crotch gingerly, wincing when the tissue cam in contact with the latter's aching flesh.
She'd clean them later. Later, she didn't have to use the magic right away. She'd just... wait a while, and recover, and rest up.
Meditation would be good.
Except... she didn't feel so very safe in her room anymore. The silence and shade that had once comforted her were now oppressive. So instead of meditating, she threw on a fresh uniform, clutched a random book at her chest without even looking at the title, took a deep breath, and walked out of her room. She held the book open in front of her as she walked, as she often did, but this time her eyes didn't see the words written inside. It was a mask. It was trickery. But it was something she needed to keep herself kind of, sort of, just a tiny little bit calm.
She made her way to the main room. The mess was almost completely cleaned up by now, with just a few suspicious gurgling spots on the floor that Silkie was happy to tend to, and Starfire and Robin were engaged in watching a historical movie of some sort from the couch while Cyborg and Beast Boy leaned on the couch's back and kept up a running commentary on the quality of the acting and special effects. Every few moments, Starfire had a new question for Robin about human culture as presented on television.
It was amicably loud, and everything was well-lit, and oh so very normal. It was everything she'd gotten away from, and she quietly slipped in and sat in a chair nearby, still pretending to read, allowing the meaningless noise of life to rush through her brain and whisk away the horrible thoughts inside.