"C'mere, you goofy boy!" He growled playfully the toddler around the waist from behind, tossing him in the air and catching him, attacking him with nipping kisses, still pretending to growl. Bo squealed and laughed and when the Titan put him down, he ran to another, hugging her legs. She picked him up and rolled her eyes, fixing the collar of his shirt. He rested his head on her chest and sucked his thumb.
Raven thought of this, and many more memories as she sat on the floor of the bathroom, her cloak over her head and wrapped around her drawn-up knees. She would not come out. She couldn't. She rested her head on her knees and closed her eyes, trying to stop trembling. For the first time in her life, aside from the ordeal with Trigon, Raven was truly afraid. She felt small and helpless. Even though she was wearing shorts and a tank-top, and her cape, she felt completely naked. It was every feeling of despair in existence, existing in her.
"You are crazy," She chuckled as she lay on her bed, the baby beside her. He pretended to hide under her blanket, but would frequently pop out and say, "Boo!". She tickled him with her index finger and kissed him. "Go to sleep, You."
"Raven." A single knock sounded at the door. "I am a patient man, but not that patient." It was Slade's oozing voice. "Whether you decide to hold up your end of the bargain or not, you cannot hide in there forever." There was silence. "What's your choice, my dear? Should I do away with the child? Is he really that distracting?"
Raven didn't answer, didn't move. Maybe he would just go away. It was unlikely, but not impossible. She jumped slightly as she heard him give the door a good kick, and she backed up further against the wall, though there wasn't much room to begin with. She had just stood up, considering escape, when the door was successfully kicked in and Slade stood menacingly in the small doorway. Raven flew up, and Slade grabbed her by the arm.
"I won't do it!" The girl said, pulling away. "I won't!"
"You already agreed," Slade tugged her down effortlessly. "I'm not one for changes of heart."
"Let me go!" Raven fought against him, but he was so much stronger. She kicked and used her powers, but nothing was working. "I won't!"
Slade slammed her against the wall with one hand, and used the other to rip her cloak clean off her neck. Raven screamed, and he covered her mouth. "If you cooperate, little girl, I might make this easier on you." His free hand slid under her shirt, grazing her ribcage. Raven, who was still trying to kick, lost her footing awkwardly around his large boots and fell on her bottom. She elbowed his thick leg, squeezing past him, and took flight out of the small bathroom.
"Raven!" She flew right into Starfire, who had also been flying. The Tamaranian girl rubbed her head slightly where they had collided and said, "We have been looking for you."
The other girl didn't answer, but instead took her hand and kept flying until they met the others down below. Raven normally had a fair complexion anyway, but now she just looked ghostly pale. Relief and fear filled her at once and she felt tears slide down her cheeks.
"Raven?" Beastboy stepped forward and Raven threw her arms around him, beginning to sob. Beastboy realized she was shaking, hard. He held her tighter and over her shoulder, exchanged equally confused glances with the other Titans.
"Where's Slade?" Robin asked, placing a hand on the girl's shoulder.
"Right here, Robin." Slade stepped forward, holding Raven's cloak, which was ripped at the top. "My, my, Raven. Aren't you a lucky girl?"
"Shut up!" Beastboy snarled, his hold on Raven tightening. "What did you do to her?!"
Raven looked up abruptly, hearing the familiar little voice, and saw Bo peeking up from Cyborg's back where he held him in a baby-saddle. The toddler's eyes glittered and he flashed his trademark toothy smile. The girl removed herself from Beastboy and used her powers to bring Bo down into her arms. He hugged her, and she hugged back, feeling all the fear leave her at once. She kissed the baby over and over and her tears made his face and hair soggy.
"How touching," Slade remarked in his eerie droll. "Too bad it won't last for long." He snapped his fingers, and Raven closed her eyes.
"Nice try, Slade." Robin smirked. "Your control over him is over."
Starfire nodded. "You are the loser yet again."
"But…." Raven looked at the baby. "How?" She then turned to each of the Titans.
"My, what clever young scholars you are." Slade approached Robin, placing a firm grip on his shoulder. "You can do anything, can't you?" The boy pulled away, and Slade calmly walked over to Raven, who took a step backwards. The villain eyed Bo, and the toddler. He started to touch him with his finger, and Raven backed away even further. "NO."
"I can't believe Slade just left like that," Beastboy said as he closed the door to his bedroom. He made his way back to his bed-the bottom bunk this time, where Raven was already sitting, Bo asleep in her lap.
"He's not gone," she replied. "He always comes back. Bo will always be one of his targets." She stroked his cheek and looked back up at the other Titan.
"Well," Beastboy shrugged. "We'll just have to protect him forever then." He fell onto his back and sighed. "Forever used to seem like a long time, huh?" He eyed Raven.
"What do you mean?" Raven asked, cocking an eyebrow. "It still seems like a long time, doesn't it?"
"Well," Beastboy explained. "We only got Bo a few months ago, and sometimes it seems like he's always been here, but then it sometimes feels like it's only been a few days." He sat up. "Don't you think so?" Before Raven could answer, he took the sleeping baby from her and carefully laid him down beside the pair.
"I guess so," Raven shrugged. She caught Beastboy in the corner of her eye moving closer, and she swallowed hard. Her cheeks flushed and suddenly she felt just as she had before Slade abducted Bo. She had been so curious. What was it like? Would it ruin their friendship? Would it forever change their lives? Would it-her thoughts were suddenly interrupted when Beastboy's lips brushed against hers, and for the first time in her life, her mind was silent. The doubts ceased. The worries disappeared. The fear and unhappiness melted into reassurance and warmth. She closed her eyes and leaned closer, her lips evenly slipping against his. Beastboy's hands wrapped around the girl's neck, and in the sudden bliss, Raven pulled him closer. Their mouths separated an instant later, and Beastboy smiled sheepishly. "I'm sorry." He shrugged. "I was curious."
Bo stirred slightly, making a little grunting sound, and the two Titans laughed. Normally, if it were a pair like Robin and Starfire, they would have spent the next hour or so cuddling or kissing even more, but this was Raven and Beastboy, and a kiss itself was a gigantic step into something more than friendship. So Raven picked up the baby, and left the room. She put Bo in his crib, and though it was not impossible for Slade to go after the child again, it was unlikely. At least tonight. She crawled into her own bed and sighed heavily.
"A baby?" She sighed heavily as she stared at the toddler, unsure of what to do with him. Why couldn't one of the others have stayed behind to watch him? Whose kid was this anyway? Should she just wake up Beastboy and have him handle it? Beastboy…taking care of a child? She sat on the floor across from him and waved a few of her fingers. The baby smiled at her and waved back. Raven smiled slightly. She had never known a baby to smile at her. She sat on the floor with him a while longer, and pretty soon she felt herself relaxed and enjoying everything about the cute, little creature. She kissed him for the hundredth time that first hour, and stopped when she spotted Beastboy eyeing her from the back of the sofa.
Maybe Bo had been just what they all needed, what she needed. As soon as Raven fell asleep, Beastboy crept into her room, first kneeling beside the crib in the wall, raising the bars quietly. He leaned over the sleeping child and kissed him gently. He rumpled his hair. "Sleep tight, Bojangles. Daddy loves you." He then walked over to Raven's bed, where she was sleeping soundly too. He leaned down and kissed her too. "I promise that I love you too, Raven. And I never break a promise. I'm serious."
Raven stirred slightly, but not much. Beastboy smoothed out part of her blanket and quietly left the room.
"You are perfect," His mommy said as she showered him with kisses.
"C'mere, you goofy boy!" His daddy growled playfully as he attacked him with kisses.
Bo smiled as he sucked his thumb, dreaming.
Author's note: I know that ended a bit abruptly, but I see a sequel on the horizon. I mean, I just don't think I could have done anything more at this point, but there most likely will be a sequel. It'll probably take place a few years after this fic. I'm not sure. Be looking for it, though! And thanks to everyone who kept up and reviewed! I really appreciate it!