Chapter 1: The Wheel of Fate…
FOREWORD: This story takes place five years after the defeat of the Brotherhood of Evil and the splitting of the Teen Titans. It also takes place after the Justice League Unlimited storyline. Raven and her friends have joined the expanded league, but are forced to embark on a new adventure through space and time in order to stop a villainous plot to destroy the world as they know it. Crossover with JLU, Batman Beyond, and many other DC Animated Universe shows.
This story is a sequel to A New Beginning, which was my original Teen Titans/Justice League Unlimited crossover story. You don't really have to read it to enjoy this story, but there might be some references to thr first one.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own any DC characters of logos.
Raven sat in a cross-legged position on the carpet of her room. It was in the height of the afternoon hours, and the young sorceress was in the middle of her daily meditation, and at times like this, she cherished this opportunity to rest and hone her powers.
While she was young in comparison to the other magically oriented members of the Justice League, Raven was probably one of the most accomplished magicians in the world. Training with Doctor Fate had done her wonders in the past year, and she had gained mastery over many new and beneficial spells in the time that she had studied with the renowned mystic.
It had been a few months since the defeat of Slade and his secret society of the world's most powerful super villains, and needless to say, the Justice League's roster had been significantly less active ever since that time. So far, things had been relatively quiet around the world. Sure there were plenty of problems with thieves and terrorists, but that was a matter that was mostly left for the governmental authorities to handle.
Following the Justice League's defeat of the Legion of Doom, most of the bad guys that had been members of the organization had been taken into federal custody for the time being. Raven had a shrewd suspicion that they would eventually escape, but that wasn't the major issue at the moment. If there was any downside to the current situation, it was the fact that Slade had once again managed to disappear without a trace, leaving the heroes baffled.
Needless to say that she was exhausted after the events of the previous months. Not only was the Justice League forced to prevent the Armageddon from happening, but she had also had a piece of her soul wrenched from her body by the evil sorceress, Morgaine Le Fey. Fortunately, she had found a way to get her soul back, and avert the darkness from engulfing the world.
Trapped in her thoughts, she did not notice the other presence in the room until a hand appeared on her shoulder. While a small gasp escaped her lips, the young sorceress betrayed no other signs that she had been caught off guard.
Doctor Fate stepped out from behind her, an apologetic hidden behind the helmet of Fate, which covered his entire head. She occasionally wondered what he looked like without it, but decided that it really didn't matter. The wizard had taught her so much about magic in the past year, that even she could not believe the extent pf her improvement in the mystic arts. He had helped her reach new heights, and together they had discovered extraordinary things about her that even she never imagined. He was a mysterious mystic, but she was surprisingly comfortable around him.
"Come with me…" he uttered in a solemn tone.
Raven cocked an eyebrow in curiosity. "What is it?"
The wizard stood in silence for a few moments before he answered her, creating a sense of unease in the air. It was unusual to see her mentor like this. He was very knowledgeable about magic of all different types, and he always seemed to be on top of things. This was not a side of him she saw often, and the idea only made her feel worse.
Doctor Fate muttered a simple incantation under his breath, moving his hands in strange motions as something began to happen. With a blinding flash of light, a portal opened in front of them. "Come…" he requested, gesturing forward into the mass of swirling magical energy.
The young sorceress simply nodded in agreement she followed after the wizard. She had long grown used to using magic to travel within his home, after all… many of the secret chambers that she visited had no doors, and were hard to access without the use of magic. She smiled inwardly at the thought, realizing how much stranger her life had become since the defeat of the Brotherhood of Evil five years ago.
She had always used magic in he daily life with the Teen Titans, but back then she had never imagined meeting a man whose very home required the use of magic to navigate. Just when she thought things were going to go back to normal, they just get even more complicated.
Stepping out of the light, Raven observed her new surroundings. She was obviously inside one of Doctor Fate's hidden chambers, but this new room was surprisingly empty. The only thing that she could see aside from the blue and gold banners lining the walls was a large crystal ball sitting atop the pedestal in the center of the floor.
The crystal ball was quite striking at first glance, as the large orb was giving off a fantastic glow. The strange light shifted and swirled as the glow struck the walls of the room, casting a spectrum of different colors like a prism in the sun. The odd part about this was that there was no other source of light to create such an unnatural and otherworldly affect, leading her to conclude that the crystal was something far more dangerous than even she could imagine.
Glancing to the side, she realized that they were not alone. A second doorway opened into the dark chamber, revealing five more figures lurking beyond the light. While she could not yet discern their physical features, she could clearly see five silhouettes. As the light of the portal faded, the five new people came into view.
Doctor Fate's wife stood at the head of the group, and she had brought with her four familiar faces. Beast Boy, Cyborg, Nightwing, and Starfire stepped over the threshold, their expressions surprisingly calm for having just been drawn into an eerie chamber in the heart of the tower.
"I brought them as you requested…" the female spell caster stated, earning a small nod from her husband. Bowing her head slightly, she turned back to the four younger heroes standing behind her and exchanged a brief glance with Nightwing before vanishing in a flash of light.
"What is this place?" Raven asked in a rather curious tone. While her facial expression was calm and composed, she could not shake the odd feeling that had coursed through her being from the moment she had first seen the crystal ball. She turned to her friends for help, but none of them appeared to know what was going on either. Beast Boy raised his hand in greeting, but quickly lowered his arm as the awkward moment passed.
Cyborg was the first to speak. "Yo Doc Fate. Why did you call us here?" he asked, raising an eyebrow in suspicion.
Doctor Fate remained silent for a few moments, but other wise ignored their questions. Stepping towards the pedestal, the wizard slowly approached the orb in the center of the room. He stared into it for a few moments before letting out letting out a strained sigh. His mind raced with thoughts about the situation as he struggled to come up with a way to explain the current situation. There were a lot of things that needed to be said at the moment, but the situation was urgent and time was of the essence.
Raven placed a hand on his shoulder and shook him lightly to get his attention. The gesture had its desired affect, and the wizard turned to face her. They made eye contact for a few moments, but that was all that was necessary for Raven to discern his feelings. From that brief moment, she instantly knew something was deeply disturbing the renowned wizard.
"I have something of the utmost importance to tell you…" he said staring around at the former Teen Titans. Raven exchanged uneasy glances with her old friends, but her gesture had not gone unnoticed by the wizard. "All of you." He added hastily.
The young sorceress felt as if a lump had formed in her throat, but simply nodded in response to his words. Whatever he had to say to her must have been terrible if he had dismissed his own wife. Something inside of her just told her that this situation was going to go from bad to worse.
Nightwing nodded in response to the magician's last words, but his eyes remained fixated on the strange orb sitting in the center of the room. "Explain the situation." He asked, returning his eyes to the magician.
Doctor Fate stepped forward towards the crystal ball, extending his hand as he approached it. After placing his hand atop the shining orb, he turned his view towards the five young heroes, whose gazes had once again become fixated on the magical device. "Before I begin, I must ask if you are all willing to sacrifice anything to help me…"
"What do you require of us?" Starfire asked, having spoken up for the first time since her arrival.
"That will all become clear in due time…" he replied, glancing sideways at the former Titans. "I am not sure of all the details yet, but my magic has detected a grave disturbance in time and space, which has cast the mystical alignment into chaos."
Raven cocked an eyebrow in confusion. "What's going on?" she asked, the tone of her voice a mixture of panic and curiosity.
"Perhaps it will be easier if I show you…" the magician stated. No sooner had he finished speaking, that his eyes started to glow with vindictive light. A bright aura radiated from his body, flaring and dancing like the flames of a great fire. Concentrating his mystical energy, Doctor Fate focused his powers into the crystal ball in his hand, which began shining more brightly than ever. This lasted for a few minutes, but as quickly as the process had started, it stopped.
Having finished the magical transference, Doctor Fate took a few steps away from the crystal ball so that the others could see it. The former Titans stared on as shapes began moving around inside of the or, but Raven's eyes widened in shock as she stared at the surface of the crystal, watching silently as the images within began to solidify. As the scene within the crystal unfolded, the former Titans were not sure what to think.
A five-year-old boy ran through the fields of a farmland, his eyes glistening with happiness as an older man chased after him. Although he was so young, the boy was unusually fast for his age and easily outran his elderly father. His mother watched on as her husband played with the boy, a smile appearing on her face as she watched her son.
Unbeknownst to any of them a shadow figure had been watching. Although none of the Titans could see the face of the man Laser fire sailed through the air, blasting the two adults through their hearts. Coughing up blood, the elderly couple collapsed onto the ground, their eyed blank and emotionless.
"Ma, Pa… the young boy cried in terror. Dashing across the field, the boy knelt down next to his father's corpse and shook him in the hopes that it was all a game. When neither of his parents responded, the boy began to cry out for help, tears streaming down his face.
Looking up from his parents, the boy met the gaze of another man. The man wore a black cloak, concealing his entire body except the lower half of his face, giving him an oddly sinister presence. "I'll help you…" the man replied reaching down towards the boy.
The child cried out in fear, holding onto his mother's body as the man's muscular arm grabbed a hold of him. Yanking back, the shadowy figure tore the child from his mother's body.
"It'll all be over in a second…" the man mused, apparently entertained by the child's screams. Reaching into his belt, the man puller out a jagged knife. While the weapon appeared normal at first glance, it gave off a distinct greenish glow reminiscent of a certain radioactive rock.
Gripping the Kryptonite Dagger in his hand, the man thrust the blade downwards towards the boy. A terrible scream echoed throughout the area…
Doctor Fate tossed a sheet of cloth over the crystal ball, staring at the floor as he turned back towards the former Titans. "Now do you understand?" he asked.
"That was…" Nightwing shouted, his hands clenched into fists. "But how… and why?" he stammered in confusion.
Raven's eyes widened in terror as the stunning realization dawned on her. From the expressions on her friends' faces, she could tell that they weren't quite sure what to think about the strange scene within the crystal ball, but she had a shrewd suspicion that she knew what was going on. The problem was… she wished that it wasn't true.
As if on cue, Doctor Fate raised a hand into the air to draw their attention back towards him. While they seemed to be rattled slightly by the terrible scene, he was beginning to wonder whether of not he should continue. Shaking these thoughts out of his head, the magician realized that he had no other choice but to finish the explanation.
"I'm sure that you're all wondering what that was…" he said, earning a collective yet uneasy nod from the former Titans.
"Damn right!" Cyborg shouted, his face still stricken with terror.
"Messed up…" Beast Boy added. Although the green changeling was normally very loud and straightforward with his speech, the tone that he had just spoken in was much more hoarse and quiet.
Raven simply nodded in retaliation, her eye focusing on the wizard.
Doctor Fate returned her nod as he spoke up, figuring that it would be better for him to clarify the facts right away. Taking a deep breath, the wizard decided to explain things slowly so that there would be less confusion.
"Allow me to explain what you saw just now… The images that the crystal shows are those of past present and future, and what you saw just moments ago was a terror from the past."
Nightwing shook his head in annoyance, his expression hardening. "That murderer used a green blade carved out of Kryptonite to attack that kid. If you are saying that Superman was murdered as a child, then I can't believe you. He's still alive today so it's not possible."
"That… is the problem." The wizard replied. "That scene shows us Superman as a young boy… before his Kryptonian powers had fully manifested themselves. You are correct to assume that something is wrong, because there is."
Raven opened her mouth to speak, but her mentor simply raised his hand in objection. The gesture had its desired effect and effectively silenced her for the moment.
"I was getting to that." He interjected, lowering his hand in a hasty manner that did not usually suit him. "As you can probably conclude from this glimpse into the past, someone is trying to interfere with history as we know it."
Beast Boy shook his head in an impatient manner, having finally recovered from the shock of the entire situation. "Why kill Superman?" he asked.
Nightwing gave a small groan, his eyes shifting back to the green changeling. "I think I get it now. Superman and the other founding members of the Justice League have all played an important role in keeping this world safe, so if Superman had never come to be, the world as we know it may not exist…"
"Precisely… Had it not been for Superman's existence, Darksied would have easily brought this planet to its knees." Doctor Fate added, nodding his head in emphasis. He was pleased that the younger heroes had grasped the seriousness of the situation in such a brief amount of time. "This idea also leads me to conclude that someone is trying to kill off the founding members of the Justice League in an attempt to change the future."
Raven simply "What proof do you have of this?" she asked, turning her attention back to Doctor Fate.
The wise magician said nothing in response to her question, and simply pulled the cloth from the surface of the crystal ball. "Behold… 1000 year into the future." He stated, gesturing towards the shining orb.
The former Titans stared into the depths of the orb, but what the image that they saw within the depths of the sphere kept flipping between two scenes like a broken video. While both images seemed to be of the same location, there was a remarkable difference between them. One was a bright and beautiful utopian city. The buildings shot up towards the sky like something out of a Sci-Fi movie, and a towering statue of Superman looked down over the city. The other image was not so pleasant. It portrayed a malevolent and twisted wasteland where the sun was no longer visible, and all the people were marched like slaves through the streets, their arms and legs shackled as groups of overseers forced them to work.
The wizard covered the crystal one again in an attempt to get back to the current situation. "As you can see, the timeline is severely polluted, and the future is uncertain at this point in our time. If the founding members of the League are removed from history, than the world as we know it will no longer exist…"
"We have to do something!" Nightwing exclaimed, stepping forward as he spoke. "We have to tell the League immediately."
Doctor Fate simply shook his head in response. "That will do us little good."
"Why?" Raven asked. Although she had always worked to create an emotionless façade, her imminent panic was becoming more evident by the moment. "We have to do something before time itself becomes too fluid for us to fix."
"That is why I called you here." The wizard replied. "You and your friends must go back in time and stop these things from happening."
Starfire was the next one to speak. "Why can not we allow the League to solve this terrible problem? Surely there are people who are much more qualified foe this mission."
The magician shook his head in a solemn manner, his eyes portraying a hint of sorrow. "Unfortunately, that is not possible."
Cyborg who had remained relatively silent up until this point decided to voice his question. "Why not?" he asked, sounding slightly worried and conflicted at the same time. "I know that we're tough, but doesn't a problem like this usually fall under the jurisdiction of the top league members?"
"Under normal circumstances you would be correct, but the situation is different this time."
"In what way?" Raven asked.
Doctor Fate turned away from them for a moment before resuming the conversation. Taking another deep breath, the wizard decided to explain. "The laws of temporal displacement in space and time do not allow an individual to interfere with your own past… which means that you would not be allowed to return to a time when you were younger in order to reverse the effect of an event in your life…"
A stunning realization dawned on Raven's face as she listened to his words. "I get it now… We are younger than most of the other League members, so we are free to return to an era before our births to prevent this from happening."
"I am glad that you were able to realize this so easily." the magician said, giving his student a nod of approval. "But enough praise for now… time is of the essence, and we must work fast if you are to save the future."
"And what if we fail…" Beast Boy said, glancing down at the floor. All the while he was imagining what would happen if they could not change the future. "Terrible things could happen, and we could even be the cause if we're not careful."
"Then we won't fail!" Nightwing interjected, his eyes blazing with determination. "We're the best hope that the world has left at this point… we have to try. Who's with me?" he asked, looking back at his old teammates in an expectant fashion.
"I AM WITH YOU!" Starfire shouted, raising her fist into the air.
Cyborg pounded his fist against his hand, cracking his knuckles in a threatening manner. "Count me in too, guys."
"Let's do it?" Beast Boy cried, shaking off the gloomy attitude that he had previously shown. Stepping forward in an energetic manner, the green changeling joined his friends. Raven simply nodded in a silent manner, as she stood beside Beast Boy.
"Very well…" Doctor Fate replied. "But be prepared… you have everything to lose… and everything to gain on this mission."
Placing his hand onto the crystal, the wizard began muttering some incredibly complex incantations that even Raven had never even heard of. The words were so strange, that they did not even sound human. After a few minutes of chanting, a large portal opened in front of the crystal ball.
Raven was the first to step towards the open void. Peering into the spacial mass of swirling energy, the young sorceress was certainly surprised. Her chaos magic was able to create portals, but this strange new vortex was invariably different then her own. The magical energies were indescribably beautiful, and the way that they swirled and spun was reminiscent of the portals that Warp had used to skip through time and space.
"This portal leads to Smallville, many years in the past. You must remember that it is a one way trip… and that you will require the use of magic to return to this period in time."
"My skills cannot produce such an effect." Raven said.
Doctor Fate gave her an understanding gesture, tearing open a rift leading to a pocket dimension where he stored a variety of items. Reaching into the small void, he soon withdrew a tiny crystal ball with a series of numbers inscribed on the surface. "It took me a while to create, but I have made you this as a means of returning to the here and now."
Raven took the crystal from his outstretched hand, stowing it away in the folds of her robes. The crystal disappeared into the blue material and seemed to vanish into nothingness. "How do I use it?"
"All you need do is focus you magical aura into the orb to activate it. The crystal will produce a vortex for you and your friends to return… but remember to use it wisely, for you may not be able to return without its magic." The wizard warned.
"I will…" she replied, inclining her head in a respectful bow.
Doctor Fate bowed back before gesturing his hand towards the open vortex. "Now go… I have faith in you all. Remember, the fate of the world rests with you all."
With that said, the former Titans stepped one by one through the swirling energies, disappearing into the void. Raven was the last to enter the portal, sparing one last glance at her teacher before her departure. The wizard gave her one last nod as she too was spirited away by the power of the portal.
NOTE TO READERS: I hope some of you guys will be willing to review my story, even though it's not fully developed yet. If you don't like it, that's fine, but it's fanfiction so don't give me any of that canon crap. I know that the Teen Titans and Justice League are supposedly part of seperate continuity, but the two shows make several references that suggest that they could be linked somewhere. (EX: Speedy appearing with Green Arrow in Justice League Unlimited with the same character design and voice actor as he had in Teen Titans or Kid Flash and the Flash having the same voice actor for both shows)