Disclaimer: I don't own the Teen Titans.

Author's Note: Y'know, it's amazing what a fondue will do to jumpstart one's creative juices. I'm reviving my old Apocalypse series, but to a slightly different tune this time. Think of something like The Sacred and Profane's Opposites Attract (a bunch of oneshots in the same AU) except less fluffy (mostly), and less frequently updated (entirely).

A warning: the relationship between Raven and Garfield will be abusive. She isn't herself anymore, and I'm playing with that. Bad things will happen to Garfield at Raven's hands. If you can't handle that, then this is probably not a story I'm interested in you reading. That said, this series is not in any way, shape, or form an endorsement of physically, verbally, or emotionally abusive relationships. Just so everyone is clear on that. If anyone jumps down my throat, I just might lose my mind.

The fiery trials through which we pass will light us down in honor or dishonor to the latest generation.
-Abraham Lincoln


Trials

"Do you love her?"

The green man jumped in surprise, startled as much by the question as he was by the presence of the questioner. Turning from his current task (alphabetizing the Queen's extensive literary collection), he directed his attention to girl ('woman,' he corrected himself) who had posed the query.

He took a moment to study her as he pondered the question. His interrogator stood barely an inch taller than he, although given his rather… diminutive… stature, that was no great accomplishment. She wore the same plain floor-length gray robes she had worn since her final pubescent growth spurt, leaving her entire figure obscured beneath the loose-fitting cloth. Even her hands were obscured, tucked into the opposing sleeve of her garb. Her heavy hood made sure that even her face was hidden from the world, when it was up.

At the moment, however, the hood was down, as it always was when (and only when!) she spoke with the man she was currently addressing. Her face betrayed her genealogy, for even if her naturally purple locks were highly unusual among the human population, only one source could possibly provide their child with four eyes.

But even if she had her mother's eyes in number, Ava's eyes were exactly the same green as her father's. And as her only physical resemblance to the man, she considered them to be her best feature.

"If you're asking about your mother," Garfield finally said, setting down the armload of books on the floor, "then the answer is most emphatically yes."

The answer did not please his daughter, and she did not even attempt to disguise her distaste. "I don't see how you can," she sneered, "not with the way she treats everyone, you most of all."

Her father snorted. She had a point of sorts; the Queen certainly wasn't what most people would call 'kind.' 'Cruel' would be more likely.

"I love her because I love her," he replied. "It's simply how it is. I fell for her before her Changing, and she's essentially the same person now, even if it's hard to see through the layers of her…" he chose his words carefully, "… her heritage."

"She demeans you, humiliates you in public and in private, punishes you for things completely outside of your control…"

Garfield snorted again, thinking back to the days of the Titans, when she had done all of the things his daughter was mentioning… albeit, to a much lesser degree than she did nowadays.

"… she goes out of her way to sexually frustrate you…"

He choked, his eyes bulging out of his head. "Ava!" he half shouted, scandalized that his daughter, of all people, was talking to him about… that.

The girl rolled her eyes at her father's reaction. "Oh, please, don't tell me you thought she's been wearing that strappy leather thing all these years because it was comfortable! And that business she does with her tail on your leg-"

"I am not having this conversation with my daughter!" Garfield said, trying to force down the flush in his face. She grinned evilly, and pressed onward.

"Daddy," she drawled, "I'm one hundred and seventeen years old. Surely you don't think I'm…" Whatever she wasn't by virtue of experience, however, was lost on her father as he clapped his hands over his pointed ears and started singing off key. After a few moments, the green man realized that his progeny was no longer threatening to regale him with tales of her… exploits… and exposed his ears to the world once more.

As the coast seemed clear, he decided to go on the offensive. "Besides," he countered, "how do you know that your mother and I don't go at it every night like bunnies?" This time, it was Ava's turn to shudder in horror, although she quickly regained her composure.

"When was the last time you and… Mom… actually had sex, then?" she asked, taking the direct approach.

Garfield balked. He wasn't going to lie to his daughter, even though he knew he could get away with it. Even though she was capable—being the Queen's daughter and all—she wouldn't go through another person's thoughts without their explicit consent. Suddenly unable to meet Ava's eyes, he muttered inaudibly.

"I'm sorry, what was that?"

"Your conception," he said loudly. "Not before, and not since."

Ava blinked in surprise. She'd been prepared for an answer of months, not one of over a century. Her usual anger at her mother flared into a fury, and the air around the two began to crackle with power as she teetered toward losing all self-control.

Her father, taken aback at his daughter's reaction, moved quickly into damage-control mode. Snatching her into a hug, he startled her and broke her concentration on her rage. After a few moments he put a small amount of space between them and smoothed back her bangs with one hand, smiling sadly as he did. He wished his daughter and his Queen would get along, and it hurt that he was the primary point of conflict between the two.

Ava struggled with herself, trying her hardest not to upset her father… but he had to know. "Dad, you don't understand… her kind, you know that they have… appetites." She paused, uncertain how to deliver the conclusions her father had refused to arrive at himself. She decided to go with the direct approach. "If she's not sleeping with you, then-"

She found herself cut off by gentle laughter, and her father's green face shaking back and forth. "Ava, if she's trying to hurt me like that, then don't you think she would have told me about it? Thrown it in my face? No, she hasn't, because she isn't. As hard as you may find it to believe, I am thoroughly convinced that your mother loves me… she just doesn't know how to express it very well."

"But-"

"No 'buts,' dear heart." Sitting down and leaning against the bookshelf, he patted the floor next to him in invitation, which she accepted. Throwing an arm over her shoulder and pulling her close, he looked up towards the ceiling. "Did I ever tell you the story of the Great Canadian Uprising?"

And as he had since she had been a little girl in purple pigtails, her father regaled her with stories until she fell asleep in his arms.


Her Royal Majesty—more informally known as 'Raven' to those with a sincere deathwish—smiled as she looked down at her lover. The green boy ('man,' she corrected herself) lay beside her, immobile, insensate, and unconscious from exhaustion. She had been far gentler with him tonight than she had been most every night previous, but still took care to heal the numerous cuts, bruises, and welts she had inflicted upon him during their lovemaking.

And lovemaking it had been, for even as she couldn't show him what he meant to her after the suppression of her humanity, she still genuinely felt it all the same. As she lovingly ran a glowing hand over his battered body, ensuring that he felt none of the aftereffects of the night's activities in the morning, she gently—as she only was with him—reached into his mind and erased any memory of what they had done together that night. It was her double-edged gift to him; that he should spend each day feeling as though he was in a desert of affection, so that he could better appreciate the oasis he stumbled into each night.

And as she left his chambers, setting in place the spells that would keep him safe for the night from any that would do him harm, she resolved to finally address the issue of her rebellious offspring.

If there would be a contest for his affection, it would be Raven who would come out on top. Garfield Logan was hers, and Her Royal Majesty was jealous of her possessions.


Author's Note: So between crazy-ass Raven, Daddy's Little Princess, cowed Beast Boy, oddly extended lifespans, and revolutionary Canadians, I think I'm going to have fun with this.