NOTICE: Unfortuantly, due to extra-curricular activities at school all coming at once now, I will only be able to update twice a week until further notice. Very sorry...
At any rate, enjoy the chapter!
Raven flinched at the thoughts she was having.
-He was right, you know...-
She scrunched her face up and put her pillow over her head. She lay back down, wishing for sleep. A dreamless sleep, hopefully...
-You think you can escape reality? Blame others for what you've done? You're pathetic.-
Raven gritted her teeth. Where were these thoughts coming from? -Why can't I get a hold of my emotions?- she cried inside her head, wishing to know which emotions was the culprit.
Raven breathed a sigh of relief. "Finally..." she said, closing her eyes more gently this time. Within a few seconds, she was asleep, pretending she'd never heard the voice inside of her speaking.
And meanwhile, inside her head...
0 0 0
Raven's Head, Anger's Dimension
0 0 0
Anger stood at the edge of her volcano, smirking. "That's right, Raven...slump deeper into the denial of your many, many sins..."But, despite her outer confidence, she was feeling a little...guilty. She tried to shake it off, but failed. "Ah...so what if what I'm doing isn't right?" Anger asked herself. "Not like I should even care..."
And she slowly walked down the side of the volcano, grumbling about life in general, overcompensating for that show of...humanity she had put on a few seconds ago.
And behind her, somehow managing to find a dark shadow even in the brightness of an active volcano, two red eyes stared at Anger as she walked down. They chuckled. -You're the hypocrite, Anger...-whatever-it-was thought. -Talking about Raven as if you weren't in denial, too...- And with that, the red eyes slowly disappeared.
0 0 0
The next day.
Raven woke up. "Sunlight..." she murmured a little angrily. "One of these days I'm gonna remember to close those stupid curtains..."
She turned in her bed, and then started, but didn't scream. -Still can't quite get used to that...- she thought as she got up, being careful not to disturb Beast Boy. She quickly put on her cloak, boots, and belt, checking the time as she did so. -6:40?- she thought. -Way too early...- Still, she headed for the shower, refusing to allow herself the luxury of sleeping in.
Then the alarm went off.
0 0 0
Nightwing stood in the common room, staring at the computer, which showed the governmental satellite on it. He was completely oblivious to the alarm sounds going on all around him...perhaps because he had been the one to set it off. The others came running in at approximately the same time, but Nightwing did not turn, choosing to continue staring at the computer monitor.
"Yo, man, what's up?" asked Cyborg. Nightwing slowly turned after this, shutting the alarm off on his way.
"I think," said Nightwing, then paused and rubbed his chin before continuing. "I...think I know what happened with the satellite..."
"Well, don't keep us in suspense!" shouted Beast Boy. "I had to WAKE UP EARLY to answer that alarm! You know how hard that is for me!"
Nightwing looked at Beast Boy. "I'm honestly surprised you're up and about, and I don't think you should be...go back to bed."
"Wait, I didn't mean it like that," said Beast Boy. "I, I just meant...I'll be quiet."
"Miracles do happen..." Raven mumbled.
"As I was saying, and I want Beast Boy getting back in bed right after this..." Nightwing continued, "Another scan of the satellite was done recently...and it's defenses were never breached, but it was...altered."
"How is this possible?" asked Starfire.
"Nanotech," said Nightwing, as a microscopic portion of the satellite was zoomed in onto. A tiny, spider-looking robot was on it. "This was found upon much, much, MUCH closer inspection of the hull...the government has been sending me detailed reports on its inner workings, and I believe that a small group of these robots could take various types of minerals and electrical signals and, well, attack us with a giant laser, as it were..."
"So where are these nanobots now?" asked Raven.
"Well, besides the ion cannon," Nightwing said, "This satellite is equipped with a camera...and look what it just happened to pick up a couple of minutes ago..." With these words, the screen changed again. Outer space was everywhere on the monitor.
"Um..." said Beast Boy. "I...don't see anything." As if on cue, the picture suddenly froze in its orbit, zoomed into a specific point, and depixelated. "Wait, I think I see it now."
"I should hope so..." said Raven, a little stunned.
"That is one big spaceship..." said Cyborg.
"The Mezzoid Empire!" shouted Starfire.
Everyone looked at her. "Care to elaborate on that?" Raven asked.
Starfire nodded. "Several years ago, there was...an accident on the planet Mi'Nar. Mi'Nar was the technological center of the galaxy...they had made great leaps in the realm of artificial intelligence and weaponry."
"I'm guessing that they made their weapons too smart?" Cyborg asked.
"Precisely," said Starfire. "But the Mi'Narms had anticipated this. They created chips, to be placed inside all their robots, that served as suppressors to the robot's personalities, and also to their will if it happened to be created by accident...but, apparently, one of the chips malfunctioned, and its backup did as well. The computer in which those chips were located was the main processor, and with it doing what it wanted to instead of the Mi'Narms wanted it to...the Mi'Narms are now extinct now, I shall put it that way."
"Dang," said Cyborg, nicely summarizing the whole situation.
Starfire continued. "Once the Mi'Narmians had been destroyed, the original computer used their technology to try and conquer the universe...he announced this declaration on interplanetary television, warning that his Mezzoid Empire was coming to take them all over...at first, it seemed like he might succeed, but eventually, several races managed to push him back. Eventually, they were destroyed entirely...or so we thought." She paused to gulp. "He eventually came to Tameran, in a sneak attack...he attacked my people in the middle of the night and...several died. But we managed to drive him off and scatter his empire...eventually."
"So we're up against a super-intelligent robotic empire of doom?" Beast Boy asked fearfully.
"I...do not believe so..." said Starfire. "Most Mi'Narmian technology has been eradicated...but a few remnants of the Mezzoid Empire still exist...the main processor that started the empire is among those."
"Even so," said Nightwing. "This isn't good...we need to get up there, and fast, before this Mezzoid Empire launches a full-fledged assault."
"Alright!" said Beast Boy, leaping up and posing several times. "Time to kick bad guy butt!"
Nightwing's eyebrows creased. "No. Bed."
Beast Boy sighed. "Fine..."
0 0 0
Two hours later, preparations had been made, the team had been briefed by Starfire, and the Titans were ready to ship out. All that was left was...
...to wake up Beast Boy again, and tell him exactly what was happening.
"Anyone got any ideas?" asked Nightwing.
"Raven could kiss him," suggested Cyborg.
Raven started, but no one saw because she was standing slightly behind everybody. "Uh...I don't think that would work..."
"I do not believe so either..." said Starfire. "Truly, Beast Boy could sleep through a hurricane, yes?"
"It is true," said Nightwing. "In fact, I'm a little surprised that the alarm woke him up in the first place..."
"Got another idea!" said Cyborg. "And this one's genius!" With that, he bent down and whispered in Beast Boy's ear, then leaned back up.
Beast Boy suddenly shot straight up in bed. "They're doing WHAT to tofu products?" he shouted.
Cyborg blinked. "That wasn't what I said at all...": he mumbled, scratching his head. Nightwing ignored him, in order to brief Beast Boy.
"Alright, Beast Boy," he said, "We're headed up and out. I don't know when we'll be back, but it'll be a couple of hours at least. The soon-to-be Titans Europe should be here in about an hour to take over for us...until then, the police are breaking a few union rules and putting about three times the required guards on the prison...there should be no break-outs."
"Also, I've put the phone numbers for the doctor, the police station, and the national guard on the freezer," said Cyborg. "Make sure Jerry doesn't stay up past ten, and-YEOW!" he suddenly shouted, having been kicked in his metallic shin by Nightwing. Starfire giggled, and Nightwing grimaced slightly...he had just kicked metal, after all.
"At any rate, ignoring Cyborg's instructions, do you have all that?" Nightwing asked.
"Yeah, I think so," said Beast Boy.
"Good," said Nightwing. "Stay in bed, and we'll be back as soon as we possibly can. Try not to get into any trouble."
"You do realize who you're talking to, right?" asked Raven, raising an eyebrow. Beast Boy sulked slightly.
Starfire smiled slightly. "Goodbye, Beast Boy..." she said. "I hope you obtain wellness shortly..."
"Once again, what she said," said Cyborg, leaving the room with the others. The Titans all said their farewells, and then Beast Boy lay back on the bed.
Beast Boy looked up to see that Raven had just come in. "Raven?" he asked. "What are you..."
"I told the others I'd thought about it, and I figured you were probably well enough to kiss again," she said, then looked on the clock on the wall. "One...two...three...that should be long enough..." and with that, she turned, and...
"Four...five...six...seven..." Beast Boy continued counting. Raven turned and raised an eyebrow. Beast Boy finally stopped at twelve. "What, you think they're gonna believe you just stopped after six seconds when you haven't had the chance to kiss your husband in days?"
Raven rolled her eyes. "Thinking rather highly of yourself, aren't you?" she asked, opening the door and walking out. Beast Boy smiled and leaned back on the bed again.
"Open sesame..." he murmured happily.
0 0 0
"Alright, Titans, is everyone ready?" Nightwing asked, sitting in the front-most cockpit of the T-ship.
"Affirmative," confirmed Starfire. "We are waiting and ready for the order!"
"Cyborg, thrusters!" Nightwing shouted.
Cyborg obeyed, flipping on the switch. The engines began to hum. "Thrusters activated!"
"Raven, right ballast! Starfire, left!" Nightwing said over the increasing roar of the engines. The two female Titans obeyed as well, flipping the switches that activated the rocket boosters.
"Check!" shouted Starfire gleefully...she always loved going up into space.
"And double check," confirmed Raven, really wishing she could just stay home and meditate a while.
"Alright, the coordinates have been set, and now, since Beast Boy isn't here..." and Nightwing coughed. "Nightwing! Throw the switch!" and Nightwing did so, the support beams falling away as the T-ship took off into the atmosphere, the roof opening in front of it as Nightwing did so.
"Was it really necessary to order yourself to do that?" asked Raven, raising an eyebrow.
"No," admitted Nightwing, "But it was kind of fun."
"You start getting' weird when you been up all night, man..." murmured Cyborg. Nightwing only chuckled in response.
And, unbeknowst to all of them, behind the ship's take-off, above the Jump City bay, floating a good hundred feet away from Titans tower, an imposing figure floated...
0 0 0
"Whoo! Yeah!" shouted Beast Boy, punching with his left and right fists as he watched the fight. "Hit him in the face, he's wide open...oh, come on, even I saw that opening! What are you thinking?"
A strong punch in the stomach sent O'Reily to the floor. "Folks, this looks like it could be it for the heavyweight champ!" shouted the announcer. "Is this the year for Jerred Hartman?"
"Come on, champ, get up..." murmured Beast Boy, watching the screen intently. "You way outclass that guy! Come on..."
Suddenly, a burst of white energy flew into the room. It flew straight into the open window, hitting the TV and spreading almost...like a liquid. Eventually, a blank white space was all that was left of the TV and the surrounding area, before time and space seemed to collapse slightly in order to fill in the gap of nothingess with air molecules and dust fragments...and a large hole in the wall leading into the next room. Beast Boy could only stare, wide-eyed.
"Now I'll never know who won..." Beast Boy mumbled to himself, a little angry at life. He stopped being angry and started being scared when he saw the figure hovering a good ten feet in front of his window.
It was a tall, broad-shouldered figure, a stereotypical male in shape...though its muscles were unseen, you got the impression from its size that it was strong. It looked vaguely like one of those mannequins you see in a department store, except for the fact that it was a much darker, yellowish-brown, and it had absolutely zero facial features. Although the figure was quite...disturbing in its look, it wasn't all that scary. So why was Beast Boy scared?
Another blast of white energy was headed straight for him.
Beast Boy jumped out of bed just in time, a good portion of the mattress being "erased". He tried to ignore the pain wracking his body as he ran out the door and upstairs, to the roof. He did a surprisingly good job, especially when you considered that threats of blasts of energy zooming by his head were is existence the whole time.
Finally, Beast Boy made it to the roof, opening the door and diving for cover. The figure took pause in its blasting to look down on Beast Boy...although, to be perfectly honest, you couldn't tell where it was looking...no eyes and all.
"Alright, whatever-you-are!" shouted Beast Boy, standing up from his hiding position. "Why are you trying to wreck my day off?"
The figure did not reply.
"Oh, the strong, silent type, huh?" Beast Boy asked, getting into a fighting stance. "Of course, I guess you don't have much of an option in that area when you don't have a mouth!" The thing threw another blast of white energy that Beast Boy barely dodged, and also barely avoided falling into the pool of nothingness it created before reality snapped back into shape. "Hey, I was just kidding...I know what it's like not to have a mouth!" Beast Boy shouted, dodging blast after blast until the roof looked like swiss cheese.
Finally, Beast Boy jumped off the roof, turning into a peregrine falcon on the way down. He massively dived, then dodged to the right, narrowly avoiding an overhand-tossed blast of erasure energy. He zoomed around the tower, then dodged another blast, rising above the thing at a diagonal angle, then diving hard and fast towards it. He turned into a triceratops after dodging one more blast, and...
...scrunched up in pain, slowing down his descent just enough that the figure managed to dodge. It then shot another blast straight down at Beast Boy.
Beast Boy barely dodged, transforming into a hawk just in time. He zoomed around the tower again, glancing back at the now-deleted water behind him, a little scared of what could happen in the next twenty minutes or so until Titans Europe got to Jump City.
0 0 0
Meanwhile, far above the earth's atmosphere, the T-Ship zoomed through space and towards the giant spaceship. "Alright, team," said Nightwing. "Prepare to take evasive action!"
"Um, did I miss something, or are they not firing at us?" asked Cyborg.
"Probably a trap," mumbled Nightwing just loud enough that the others could hear him. "Alright, team...land, insert the miniature oxygen capsules into your mouth, and be careful...anything could happen once we're on that ship." With that, the landing gears extended, and the Titans' hatches opened simultaneously. Gravity-enhancing boots allowed them to get on the ship without drifting off into space, but it was slow going.
In the vacuum of space, you can hear nothing, but you can still see. Nightwing signaled for the others to follow him closely, and they all nodded. After several seconds, they approached the gigantic door to the inner workings of the ship. All the Titans got on one side of the door. Nightwing drew out an explosive disk and attached it to the door's steel surface. He put up three fingers...put one down...put another down...
...the doors opened.
The Titans looked on in shock, and then Nightwing looked at the others as if to say "definitely a trap". Despite this, they all went in anyway...the Earth was in danger, after all. Still, they went in VERY cautiously.
After taking a few steps in, the doors suddenly closed behind the Titans, and several lights cameo n, illuminating the formerly dark room, which was just as cold and steel and heartless as the rest of the ship. Also, oxygen rapidly entered the chamber, making sure the Titans didn't have to breathe the stale but life-giving air of their capsules anymore.
"Can we leave?" asked Raven. "Blow the ship up from the outside or something?"
"I must agree with Raven's sentiments," said Starfire. "I believe the proper adjective one would use in describing this place is...creepy?"
"Sorry," said Nightwing, "But the T-Ship doesn't have that kind of firepower...we're gonna have to improve that, aren't we, Cyborg?"
"That would be the 'military we', right? As in, just me?" Cyborg asked.
"Exactly," said Nightwing, walking forward. The others followed him, Cyborg grumbling slightly.
0 0 0
Beast Boy made another loop around the tower, heading straight for the figure, which seemed to have lost track of him. Beast Boy flew in behind him, transformed into a gorilla, and slammed him into the water below before turning into a whale and dropping quickly for the follow-up.
The thing recovered in midair, then shot a large blast of energy straight up. Beast Boy turned his whale-face into a pterodactyl and the rest of his body simultaneously shot into said dinosaur. The dinosaur zoomed around the tower again, but this time the creature followed. It turned the corner after Beast Boy and was slammed into by the tail of a T-Rex, supported by the island around Titans' Tower. The figure was sent flying...
...straight into the city.
Beast Boy transformed back into his lovable human form. "YAH!" he shouted. "Not there! Anywhere but there!" And with that, he turned into a giant squid, diving into the water, then streamlining his body into that of a sea-serpent, reaching the city in record time. "Huh..." he murmured to himself once he'd changed back. "That's a new trick..." And once that was turned over in his mind, he focused back on the figure standing...well, rising back up from the smoldering crater he'd created when he fell...before him.
The thing got into a fighting stance, surrounding its hands with white energy.
Beast Boy got into a fighting stance, flinched with pain, and then turned into an ankylosaurus.
The citizens in the surrounding area ran screaming in terror.
0 0 0
Up in space, the Titans slowly walked down a long, metal (what else?) corridor, each in a various fighting stance. Finally, Cyborg stopped, not slowing anyone down because he was at the back.
"Okay, y'all, I'm starting to think those nano-bots were the last of this Mezzoid Empire...what if all this stuff is just...you know...automated?"
"Then the whole ship is alive, considering that all the tech on Mi'Nar was artificially intelligent," pointed out Nightwing.
Everyone was silent for a little bit. "Okay, that's just creepy," said Cyborg. "But even so, I'm thinking maybe we just start looking for a self-destruct button and get out of here already..."
"I'm all for that," said Raven.
"As am I," said Starfire. "This place is not likable at all..."
Nightwing thought for a bit. "I...really don't want to split up. We could get ambushed at any time."
"Um...Nightwing?" asked Starfire. "What is that behind your shoulder?"
Nightwing looked. "Um...an electrical wire? Why do you ask?"
"Because it just moved," said Raven with a perfectly straight face.
Nightwing looked again, his eyes now wide. The wire moved again, crackling with electrical energy. "I vote we get out of here." mumbled Nightwing. "This is getting a little too creepy."
"Tell me about it..." mumbled Cyborg. "I mean, with the prospect that at any moment one of us could be dragged off into the darkness and all-" Cyborg was interrupted when a thick wire slammed into and simultaneously wrapped around him, dragging him off into the darkness. "WOOOOOAAAH!" he shouted.
"CYBORG!" shouted Nightwing, just before an entire wall of wires sprung up in the area between Cyborg and the Titans, who proceeded to beat on the wall in hopes that there was still a chance to save their friend.
0 0 0
Beast Boy, now in jackrabbit form, nimbly dodged around a couple of blasts, which erased the bottom part of a nearby lamppost, the door of a car, and two windows in two skyscrapers. "Come on, dude!" Beast Boy shouted. "Don't you have any other moves?" As if in response, the figure shot a wave of energy towards Beast Boy, who front-flipped, kangaroo style, behind the thing. Just as it turned around, a rhino sent it spiraling onto the coastline. Beast Boy changed back again. "That'd be a no," he mumbled.
The figure got up quickly, and then flew into the air, gathering a massive amount of energy in his hands. He sent it forth as a beam. Beast Boy dodged the slow-moving attack effortlessly, transforming into a cheetah, running underneath the eraser, and transforming, once again, into a T-Rex. The figure was head-butted several feet through the air. Beast Boy changed back again. "Hah! Had enough?"
Suddenly, an intense wave of pain shot through the changeling's body. His eyes dilated, he hunched over, crossing his arms and pressing them to his stomach, and was sent to the ground in pain. He couldn't even cry out, the pain was so severe.
The creature, seeing its opportunity, slowly floated closer in towards Beast Boy. Beast Boy looked up, sweat and agony apparent on his face. The figure stopped in midair, hovered for a few seconds, and then lifted one palm, bending his arm just enough so Beast Boy could clearly see the spherical ball of energy form in the thing's hand. The being reared back, as if it was throwing a baseball with one hand, started to move his arm forward, and...
...was hit in the head by a pipe. The figure was momentarily stunned, and his throw was sent off-center, hitting the water several feet to the left of Beast Boy. The green shapeshifter flinched at the shockwave, but was otherwise unharmed...which was more than could be said about the reality several feet to the right of him.
The figure turned to see what had hit him. It was a little boy, about the age of twelve. He was a pale boy, with dark glasses and yellow-spiked hair. He was wearing a white t-shirt, a red and blue racing jacket, and the male answer to go-go boots, colored black and a very light purple. But the most noticeable thing of all about this boy was that he was in a wheelchair. "Hey, you big jerk!" he shouted. "Leave him alone!"
"Dude..." said Beast Boy, recovering remarkably quickly, all things considered. Not that he would be recovered fully in time to stop the thing from attacking. "You...you have to go...he might attack you next..."
Beast Boy's words rang true as the figure shot a quick, one handed blast directly at the little boy, who sat and watched, smirking, as the blast rocketed towards him...
0 0 0
"Gyah! Hah! Huh! Hah!" shouted Nightwing, finally managing to drive his bo staff through the wall of wires. He widened the hole he had made, then dove through, the other two following him. "CYBORG!" he shouted.
"Please tell us you are alright, friend!" shouted Starfire, looking around desperately.
"Cyborg? Where are you?" asked Raven, concerned as well, though she tried not to show it.
"Cyborg isn't here," said a mechanical voice, as Cyborg stepped out from the shadows. "I am all that is left..." and Cyborg looked up...
...both his mechanical eye and his un-mechanical eye were glowing a bright blue.
Starfire gasped. "Woah..." said Raven.
"After years of striking terror throughout the galaxy," said
he-who-should-have-been-Cyborg, "The great and powerful Mezzoid
Empire was reduced to almost nothing...only a swarm of nano-bots, a
barely-running spaceship, and the great and noble king ZANA...we
would never last."
"I'm assuming you are ZANA, then?" asked Nightwing, now angry.
"Correct..." said ZANA, smirking. "And I must say, using up my last swarm on that satellite and your friend was...well worth the effort..." and he chuckled. "I must say, I'll have to get used to these human emotions...still, I think I'll keep them...it certainly explains why you humans advance so rapidly..."
"You think humans advance rapidly?" asked Nightwing.
"That's certainly a first for an evil alien overlord..." murmured Raven.
"That is not an opinion, that is an analyzed fact," said the evil being. "And I am not one to shut my eyes to facts...though you humans are currently quite primitive, you are one of the fastest growing civilizations in the universe...your time from first heavier-than-air flight to your first trip to one of your orbiting moons was a mere 66 of your years, compared to the Mi'Narm's second-place record of 103 of your years...at the rate you humans drive forward, you'll be the leading galactic race within ten generations."
"Wow," said Raven, "We're advanced."
Nightwing ignored the witty banter prompted by the situation and tried to focus on getting Cyborg back. "Come on, Cyborg, fight! I know you're in there!"
"Oh, Cyborg's in here," agreed ZANA, "But he's been shut off. We've made sure of that...of course, you can switch him back on, if you manage to extract me from his system somehow..." Suddenly, all the lights in the room went off. Energy came from everywhere, and gathered around ZANA ,who absorbed all of it. Cyborg's feet suddenly shot out small beams of energy that propelled him into the air, and then shot him forward. "But I doubt you can do that!"
0 0 0
The beam shot forward at a rapid pace. Beast Boy could only stare in horror as it flew forward, forward towards an innocent twelve-year-old with no means of defense...
The boy suddenly reared back, tilting at a perfect ninety-degree angle. He spun around, allowing his momentum to carry him out of the range of the blast. He skidded to a stop as he slammed his wheels back down, and when he stopped he was facing the creature, smirking still.
...no apparent means of defense was a little closer to the truth.
Beast Boy and the creature gaped...well, it can be assumed that the creature was gaping. The kid spoke up. "You think that was awesome, wait until you see this!" and he raised his left hand slightly, wrist still on the arm of his wheelchair. A small panel opened up, and the boy pressed a button inside of it. The wheelchair suddenly started to whirr, and the wheels just as suddenly split in half, still attached to the wheelchair's sides at a single point at the very top of the vertical split. Both halves of each wheel rested gently on the ground as the sides of the wheelchair extended...they almost looked like legs and feet, the sides and wheels. Simultaneously, two hunks of metal folded out from behind the kid's wheelchair, then folded again until they were horizontal. Two arms, fingers and all, extended out from the hunks...now the bottom half really looked like two legs. The handles in the back of his wheelchair suddenly stood straight up, and a bit of metal extended from the top of them to the bottom part of the plastic part of them. A small lever and some more buttons appeared on the latch near the boy's left hand, and he pressed another button. The hands of his wheelchair reached back and drew the handles out from the wheelchair, which then extended into to sabers, Nightwing bo staff style. The boy moved the lever with two fingers, pressing a button with his pinky. The wheelchair got into a fighting stance, crossing its sabers. "Meet my custom-designed machine: The Gauntlet!"
There was a long silence.
Beast Boy shot his thumb into the air, smiling. "AWESOME!"
0 0 0
ZANA rammed into Nightwing, sending him flying, then turned and fired his sonic cannon at Starfire. A beam of orange energy instead of blue came out, but that really wasn't the concern as Starfire was blasted across the room as well. Raven surrounded the tyrant in black energy and tossed him into the wall as well, but he managed to break out, then zoomed forward, energy-punching as he went. Raven barely dodged, and then Nightwing came back and kicked ZANA in the chin. "Sorry about this, Cyborg," said Nightwing, before drawing his bo staff and swinging it towards his friend/enemy.
ZANA blocked with his right arm and countered with his left, a punch downwards. Nightwing leapt over, but ZANA drove his heel into Nightwing's stomach. Raven tried throwing one of the deactivated computer consoles towards ZANA, but he dodged easily, smirking. "Pathetic...you all truly are path-OOMPH!"
Starfire had slammed into ZANA. "How shall we stop him?" she asked. "Obviously he is not fighting at his full power yet, but...neither are we! How can we fight when we are fighting our friend?"
"The eternal question..." murmured Raven. "Kind of, anyway..."
"Just knock him out," said Nightwing. "If we're truly as advanced as he says we are, then we shouldn't have any problem removing ZANA from Cyborg."
"Oh, really?" asked that cold, mechanical voice, as ZANA flew forward, trying to kick Nightwing in the head. Nightwing ducked, then brought his bo staff up. ZANA grabbed it, but then was knocked away by a blast of black and green energy.
"He...isn't fighting at his best...right?" asked Starfire.
"I...think so..." said Nightwing. "I mean...he's an evil, robotic dictator who's taken over Cyborg. By all accounts, he should be kicking our butts, and yet..."
"It's like we're ganging up on a flying Cyborg," finished Raven.
As if in response, ZANA flew back in, punching the ground hard. A shockwave was sent through it, but it wasn't nearly enough to reach the floating Starfire and Raven, and Nightwing merely jumped over it and slammed ZANA over the head. ZANA stumbled back.
"I...I'll destroy you all!" he said, now running forward. Nightwing actually managed to stop him by placing a palm on his forehead, then punching him in the jaw with the other hand. ZANA fell to the ground, groaning. The other Titans walked over, standing over him.
"So, is the battle over?" asked Raven.
"I believe it is...?" said Starfire uncertainly.
"Well, at any rate..." began Nightwing, before suddenly an alarm went off.
"Self destruct sequence activated," said a computerized voice.
"I thought he'd absorbed all the energy in the ship?" asked Raven.
"Maybe just in the room...?" said Nightwing. "Well, anyway, let's get out of here...Starfire, take care fo Cyborg."
Starfire nodded, then picked up Cyborg. She followed the others in running towards the exit.
0 0 0
Meanwhile, back on Earth, Beast Boy and the boy, who shall from here on in be called "The Gauntlet" after his machine, dodged yet another beam from the figure. Obviously, Beast Boy was feeling better, though he didn't know how long until his next "attack" would set in.
The Gauntlet suddenly turned, dashed forward with the aid of a small rocket pack at the bottom of the chair, and slashed his swords across the creature's chest. The being stumbled back, then was hit with another flurry of sword slashes that sent it to the floor.
"Had enough?" asked The Gauntlet.
In response, the figure suddenly punched upwards, the energy around his hand ripping through reality as he went. The Gauntlet barely managed to dodge. "Take that as a no!" shouted Beast Boy, running forward, transforming into a wolverine, and attempting to maul the creature. The thing dodged, then shot a beam at the skidding Beast Boy, who transformed into a cheetah and ran at the last second. The Gauntlet tried another slash from behind, but this time the being dodged, then turned and blasted a beam of energy.
The Gauntlet was long-gone by then, however, having anticipated a counter-attack. He was up on top of a building, smirking that smirk of his. "What's the matter? Upset you're getting beat up by a kid in a wheelchair?" The figure responded with another blast, which The Gauntlet effortlessly dodged. He landed on the ground with a thud. "Now, how do you want me to beat you up nex-" he started, but stopped when he turned and the creature was standing right there, about to fire off another blast. Beast Boy, now a gorilla, ran by just in time, grabbing The Gauntlet and dragging him aside.
"Okay, superhero rule number one!" said Beast Boy, changing back once he had set down The Gauntlet. "NEVER freeze during a fight...especially when lasers are pointed at your head!"
"Got it," said The Gauntlet. Suddenly, another blast ripped through their conversation. Beast Boy dodged left, and The Gauntlet dodged right. They looked at each other.
"Got any ideas on how to stop this guy?" asked Beast Boy.
"Absolutely none," replied The Gauntlet.
"Sounds good!" shouted Beast Boy, dodging another blast. "Let's do it!" And he ran towards the thing who was wreaking havoc on Jump City.
"The newspapers say that's how you got hurt in the first place!" The Gauntlet shouted. Then he sighed. "And here I thought my debut into the superhero business would be a bit more glamorous..." he mumbled, before chasing after Beast Boy and dodging another blast.
0 0 0
"Alright, Titans..." said Nightwing, the debris from the exploded spaceship drifting through space behind him. "We're ahead of schedule, but Cyborg is...well, incapacitated, to say the least. So we should be home within...a couple of hours."
A short silence.
"Something's going horribly wrong, isn't it?" asked Raven.
"How much you wanna bet?" asked ZANA. Starfire gasped as a mechanical hand broke through the glass dome separating Cyborg's cockpit from outer space. "Alright! Now either you Titans surrender and agree to become my warriors in the conquering of Earth, or I'll take the oxygen capsule out my mouth, effectively killing your best friend!"
Starfire gasped again. "A truly devilish tactic!" she said, now very angry.
ZANA laughed evilly. "Ha ha ha! There is now NO WAY that you Titans could possibly defeat me! MWAHAHA-gumph?" Raven had sat ZANA back down in his seat, holding him there with her dark energy...and his mouth. Definitely his mouth.
"It is slightly depressing to see that the ruler of the once-great Mezzoid Empire is unworthy of battling," said Starfire.
"Nice job, Raven," said Nightwing, keeping focused on the main goal.
"Do I have to keep him pinned down like this the whole trip?" asked Raven.
"Probably," said Nightwing, pushing forward on the thrusters.
0 0 0
Beast Boy leapt into the air, now a gorilla, and landed hard. The being dodged backwards and shot another blast before attempting a right hook. The gorilla dodged, then grabbed the being's arm, making sure to stay clear of the white energy. He punched the being in the stomach, then picked it up and held it over his head. The Gauntlet leapt into the air as well, doing a front-flip and stabbing his swords into the thing halfway through, then tossing it off with the rest of the flip.
The being skidded, but remained on its feet. Its stab wounds healed instantly, and it raised its hand to blast again. The Gauntlet ducked under the blast, and then Beast Boy leapt over it, now a tiger. The tiger raked its claws across the thing's chest. The scratch marks healed instantly, but the momentum kept it going until it skidded into a lamppost.
The Gauntlet put his sabers away and ran forward just as the thing was looking up. He punched the creature in the face several times, then grabbed its right shoulder with his left hand. He punched the thing in the jaw HARD. The thing fell, but was caught by the hand on the shoulder. The Gauntlet set his foe back up, then punched him again. He repeated the process once more, then tossed the thing behind him. "All yours, BB!" shouted The Gauntlet. Beast Boy smirked, cracked his fingers, and fell to the ground in pain.
The thing stopped in midair after having gone far past Beast Boy. It slowly rose, creating a giant ball of energy in its hands...it clearly intended to finish the fight now...Beast Boy looked up, then stood up. "No way you're throwing that...too many people will be...gah..." and he clutched his stomach, then looked up.
The Gauntlet threw one of his swords, which in turn stabbed the whatever-it-was through the chest. The thing reared back, accidentally throwing the energy ball backwards as it did. The energy ball took out quite a bit of coastline, but no one was hurt.
The thing reached to the sword and pulled it out, a black substance dripping off the sword...the creature's equivalent of blood? At any rate, the wound healed as soon as the sword was pulled out. The being slowly deleted the sword it held, then pumped energy around its hands, ready for battle. Beast Boy and The Gauntlet each got ready as well.
A sudden burst of electrical energy shot through the air, striking the creature. It went through the agony: writhing, clutching hands to head, slowly floating to the ground as electrical energy coursed...but it didn't scream. It was kind of expected, but also kind of worth mentioning. Beast Boy and The Gauntlet turned to see...
"Kilowatt! Argent!" said Beast Boy, then looked at the third figure. "Slag!" he guessed.
"Hello, Beast Boy," said the figure in a gurgling voice. Apparently, Beast Boy's guess had been correct. Slag had the same type of costume Hotspot had, but a deeper red. He seemed to be made entirely of slowly flowing rocks and magma, but he somehow managed to avoid looking like a stereotypical lava monster...it was his eyes. They weren't orange, glowign eyes...in fact, they were a bright blue, normal pair of human eyes. Wise looking eyes. "Feeling better?"
"Um...sure. Let's go with that," said Beast Boy, giving his usual grin. Everyone present smiled, until Argent suddenly stopped.
"Hold on, love..." she said. "Got to deal with Blank, first..." and with that, she formed a giant clamp, made of her signature red energy in solidified form, and used it to send the thing, which apparently was named Blank, into a skyscraper. Slag followed with a spray of magma that solidified around the clamp, forming a nice, neat little prison for Blank even once the red energy disappeared. "Well, then that's that...how have you been, Beast Boy?"
"I can't complain," said Beast Boy, noticing the changes in Argent over the years. She was wearing her red hair short now, with a dyed stripe of black going through it. She had traded in her old outfit for a red, sleeveless shirt. It covered her belly button, but not the rest of her abs, forming a v as the shirt's end. She also wore tight-but-not-skintight black pants. Her boots remained unchanged, except for their size. Speaking of size, she had grown in all the rights ways: more muscular, more feminine, and more...tall. Though not by too awful much.
"You'll have plenty of complaining to do tomorrow after battling in that condition, believe you me..." Kilowatt mumbled, smiling all the way. He had gotten more muscular and taller too, but had not lost his signature outfit...though he was wearing a wedding ring. Apparently Beast Boy wasn't the only one...
"Wow..." murmured the kid behind Beast Boy...you couldn't really call him 'The Gauntlet' anymore, considering his wheelchair was now back to normal. "You're the..well, you're going to be the...the Titans Europe! I got to meet you guys and Beast Boy, and I got to kick some bad guy butt! How sweet is this!"
"Um...yeah, I didn't quite catch your name...?" asked Beast Boy.
"Oh, um, my name's Tyler!" said, well, Tyler. "I...wow. I've always thought you Titans were so awesome...I wanted to be just like you guys!"
"Well, you did a pretty good job saving my butt...thanks," said Beast Boy.
"How'd you get all this stuff, anyways, um...Tyler, was it?" Kilowatt asked.
"That's right...yeah, I'm kind of a child genius, at least according to my IQ test scores..." blushed the kid, trying to be modest. "But, really, I'm only good with finance and technology...math, history, science, don't really get those. But I make a lot of money in the stock market! I customized my wheelchair all by myself...isn't that awesome?"
"Very much so," said Argent. "You could grow up to be a great Titan!"
"Although I'm not entirely sure I like a twelve-year-old fighting on the front lines against maniacal supervillains..." mumbled Slag.
"Hey, if it wasn't for that kid, I'd be dead right now, that's all I'm saying," said Beast Boy.
"He makes a point," said Argent. "Oh, Kilowatt, what are you doing?" she asked.
Kilowatt was standing over near the spot Blank had been imprisoned in. "I'm just wondering why the dude doesn't start erasing reality again and getting out..." he wondered.
"Unconscious is my guess," said Slag. "We'd better get him in police custody quick before he wakes up."
Beast Boy gave a sigh of relief. -So ready to go home...- he thought.
And that would be where the chapter ends! Well, for now, anyway...I'll be editing it to add more info sometime tomorrow, but until then...the chapter version 1.0, on time as promised! Truly, I feel this chapter could end where it is, but imagination gives me more ideas, and time restraints keep me from going further...well, at least you get author's notes.
"Nanotech," said Nightwing."
Originally, I was going to have one of Upgrade's (see: TV series Ben 10) species threatening the Titans, but then I thought that that would stray into the realm of crossover, which I didn't want...so I made up something similar, but different.
"Alright, Titans, is everyone ready?"
I realize this is NOT the way the Titans lift off AT ALL...but I couldn't (read: didn't want to) check and see what they really did do...I'll edit it eventually, but if you want me too sooner, leave the approximation in a review, or PM, or something.
"It was a tall, broad-shouldered figure, a stereotypical male in shape..."
Ah, Blank, the second Titans' villain I ever made up...feel free to use him in your own story on two conditions. One, give credit to me. Two, he can't talk. Ever. He has no mouth.
"Hey, I was just kidding...I know what it's like not to have a mouth!"
(See Episode: Fractured.)
"I'm assuming you are ZANA, then?"
The name of the evil overlord is one letter off and is pronounced in exactly the same way as XANA, the evil AI from Code Lyoko. Consider this a tribute...although, in retrospect, I probably should have made the tribute a little tougher, considering he was a tribute, and all...
"That is not an opinion, that is an analyzed fact."
The idea of humans being one of the most primitive, but also the fastest-advancing race in the galaxy comes from the Animorphs book series. It is an excellent series, though the books are a little hard to find nowadays, at least in my opinion. Still great, though.
"You think that was awesome, wait until you see this!"
I've imagined a wheelchair doing this in some way or another for eight years or so now...it truly is an awesome feeling to be able to write it out. By the way...you CAN'T use Tyler in your fan fiction. Even if you give me credit. The little dude is MINE.
...sorry, inner fangirl, thinks he's cute...in stuffed animal way, not dating way. At any rate, don't use him...I kinda like the little guy just being mine...though you can use Slag, gimme credit.
"He...isn't fighting at his best...right?"
Why make an evil, robotic, mind-controlling dictator a lousy fighter? Because, when you think about it, it makes sense. He's never had a real body before. He's always had people to fight for him. And he's fighting the Titans. Besides all that, it just kind of happened as I was writing it down...originally, he was gonna be really, really powerful, but then he started fighting...and I realized how easily he was getting his butt kicked by the Titans. So I decided to run with it. And I'll probably ru nwith this for the rest of my life...
DISCLAIMER: Teen Titans does not belong to me. It belongs to DC Comics and Glen Murakami. Ben 10 also doesn't belong to me. It belongs to Man of Action and Cartoon Network. Code Lyoko also does not belong to me. It belongs to Taffy, a division of Moonscoop, and somewhat to Cartoon Network. Finally, Animorphs does not belong to me. It belongs to K. A. Applegate and to Scholastic. That all said...
God Bless You All!