Okay then, this is another one shot that popped into my head. For reference, it's never mentioned, but Rae and BB have been together for a significant amount of time-- I was thinking that they got together in august and it is now june/july-ish of the next year a.k.a. their first summer together. Raven might seem slightly off for some of you, but eventually, even the great Raven Roth is going to change over time.

P.S. This might be a bit too steamy for younger readers.

Enjoy.

Plain writing 3rd person omni.

Italic thoughts

Italic followed by dots or the like... Flashback sequence

DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT IN ANY WAY SHAPE, OR FORM OWN OR CLAIM TEEN TITANS AS MY OWN WORK. THEY BELONG TO DC COMICS, WARNER BROTHERS, AND CARTOON NETWORK.


Neonate Advancement

Summer was always something that passed swiftly for the young empath. She curled up quietly on the reclining chair in the living room and read a different book everyday-- at least that was how it used to be. Ever since she had begun dating a particular changeling, every day was new adventure. Hustling and bustling everywhere, always on the move and never even pausing for lunch or much else. He had thoroughly worn her out for the first part of summer, but strangely enough, he wasn't bothering her today.

The last thing she remembered was his lips on her forehead and his breath on her cheeks as he told her 'See you later' that morning. She crossed her legs tightly on her comfy grey chair and began reading. After a few minutes however, a quiet and curious sensation filled her up, Where is he? She however shook those idle thoughts away as irritating, and useless. Her mind immersed itself into the novel for the rest of the day and despite the usual commotion that the others caused, it was a pleasant day.

Beast Boy came sauntering in later that day around six o'clock or so. The Titans had finished an early dinner and had dispersed except for Raven who was still sitting at the table reading a book. Smiling he walked over to her, "Hey, you didn't have to wait for me. Eat." he kissed her forehead.

"Already done." she answered, marking her page so that her eyes could turn and view him, "There's something for you in the microwave if you want it."

"Ah, thanks." he punched in thirty seconds, and waited for his food to cook.

Silence.

Ding. After poking it with a fork, he added a minute.

Ding. The microwave finished. In the face of all of his experiences with microwaves, he still insisted on pulling the plate out as soon as it was done. He winced as the heat stung his hands. The plate flopped awkwardly on the table across from his girlfriend. Clenching his hands a couple times to ease the pain before crossing the kitchen to grab a soda from the fridge.

He sat across from her and began eating. An idle distaste crossed through the expression of the dark-haired empath. A few more minutes of silence passed between them before she spoke, "So, um, did you have a good day?" she lolled her tongue after hearing her own words-- it sounded too wife-like.

"The best." he grinned shoveling more food into his mouth.

Sorely, the magically-inclined Titan rose from the table, "Goodnight, then." she folded her book under an arm, and walked upstairs. She hesitated a second to see if he would protest, but he only returned her parting phrase.

It went on like that for a couple weeks. Beast Boy left early in the morning, and would return later at night, unless of course there was an emergency-- in that case-- of course-- he was by their side. It was kind of unsettling for her. Sure she enjoyed her alone time, she was a loner at heart, but after being dragged around for a month and a half by her playful boyfriend, she was beginning to feel just a might lonely.

"Robin," Raven addressed evenly while he sat in front of one of the Titans' computers, "Where's Beast Boy?"

"Do you mean now-- or where he's going to be?" he asked dryly as his fingers punched in whatever data he was compiling.

She sighed, and it almost sounded like a half a growl, "Robin, just give me a straight answer. Where is Beast Boy now-- or wherever he's going to be once he gets there."

"No clue." he replied emptily as though he was completely focused on his work.

Her face faulted at this, Then say so already!

"He hasn't told anyone where he's been heading off these past couple of weeks. He turns his communicator locator signal off, but we can still contact him, so it's not an issue as far as I'm concerned."

"I know that we are by nature, partial to veiling the secrets in our hearts--" her calm voice quickly morphing into what could only be considered Raven's version of 'hysterical', "But this is ridiculous! He wouldn't even tell me!" she huffed, "He just laughed and told me to go back to sleep." she folded her arms.

"Well, at least you're not alone on that front." he provided as meager attempt to cheer her up clicking the mouse a few times.

"He tells you to go to sleep to? With a kiss? My, my I really should be keeping an eye on him." she immaturely replied, rolling her eyes.

His face flushed, "I think he's rubbing off on you. But I'm really busy, so can we have this conversation some other time?"

"Fine." she replied evenly walking away from the disgruntled Boy Wonder, Hmm, I can probably figure out where he is by sense… she pondered, but then a better and more logical idea hit her, I'll just follow him tomorrow morning when he goes out…

--

"Hey," his voice whispered, "I'll see you later today."

Raven rustled under the sheets, and looked up at his curious face, "Alright," she smiled, "See you tonight."

He gave her another warm smile before disappearing out of her room. She sat up and shook her head, It's so strange-- he comes in here every morning just to tell me 'Bye'. He doesn't even stop to eat breakfast with us. She glanced at the clock sitting on her nightstand, Four-thirty? she squinted her eyes at that, Robin doesn't even get up that early…

She shuffled out of the sheets and after shrugging into her uniform, she disappeared out of her room after him. The other night when he'd arrived home again, she'd sneakily taken a hold of his communicator when he wasn't looking, and set the locator signal to 'on' again. She tugged her communicator out of her cloak so that she could follow him at much more leisurely pace besides there was no way she could keep him in her sight, without also being in his line of sight.

Robin warned her about getting mixed up in such a delicate situation-- after all she was the biggest advocate for secrecy-- but Raven couldn't stand it any longer. Not only was it dangerous that they didn't know where he was for an undetermined amounts of time, but also that-- despite her best front-- she was genuinely curious about where he was wondering off to-- not to mention lonely-- but she wasn't about to spill that to anyone.

After about forty-five minutes of flying deep into Steel City, Raven landed on the corner of a city street. She glanced down at her communicator to see that his signal was only a few streets away from where she'd landed-- after all she figured that a blue caped superhero would be pretty obvious if she landed at his exact location. She quickly covered the ground that she needed to walk before her eyes were met with a shock, "Child Development Center?" she spoke to no one in particular, He's the last one that should be influencing a younger generation…

She pushed the glass door open and walked towards the front counter. Immediately, the lady behind the counter shrieked. Raven put her fists up defensively and glanced around for a potential threat, "What? What is it?"

The lady clutched a hand to her heart, "Isn't there some danger nearby? Isn't that why you're here?"

Raven waved her hand dismissively, "You've got the wrong idea. I just came to see if someone I know is here."

The lady breathed out hotly, her face flushed a deep red as she began to hyperventilate at the excess excitement of the situation, "Are--you--s-sure?" she wheezed.

Sweet Azar… she muttered, "Yes. Really, really sure."

The lady still wheezed, not consoled by the teenager's simple words, "Breathe in, breathe out." Raven coached the middle-aged lady as she wheezed and coughed. It took the lady a few moments to calm down and stop hyperventilating, "Better now?" the lady nodded gratefully, "Now please, is Beast Boy working here or not?"

"It's just, even though the Titans East are around," she sighed, almost as though she was disregarding the question, "a mother still tends to worry." she breathed out sorely again, as her eyes misted over, a chipper demeanor crashed over this quickly, however, "Yes, he does. He's such an energetic worker!" she cheerfully continued while giving Raven directions to the room that her teammate was working in.

Cautiously, she pulled the door open. Peering into the small slit she'd opened, she noticed that the room was empty. A question mark popped over her head, and just when she was about to question the lady's reasoning, a door in the back of the room opened up, "I'll get it." he was speaking to some one else from beyond the door. He rummaged in one of the high cabinets for a minute, "Huh? Not here. Hmm." he turned away from the cabinet and began walking towards the main door in which Raven was hidden behind.

Raven's mind panicked a bit but she calmly removed herself from the situation in the nick of time. Even though she could've removed herself completely, she elected to hide on a far hallway corner. He stepped out of the door, and seemed to search the hallways with his eyes for a moment-- she realized that his sensitive nose had picked up on something, "Huh, that smells kinda like Rae's perfume." he shrugged his shoulders and continued on his quest for whatever he was looking for.

She breathed relief for a second, before quickly returning to the door and sliding through it so she could make her way to the other side of the opposing doorway. The door led to a playground filled with yelling and cheering children. A small smile grazed the girl's face. The empath floated upward and hid herself behind one of the obstructions resting on top of the building. Luckily no one had noticed her appearance. Her gaze drifted nostalgically over the playground filled with energetic children bouncing about. Her eyes then sensitively picked up on the green-haired boy's re-appearance into the outdoors.

He jogged over to one of the other caretakers that was kneeling beside an injured child, "Sorry, we ran out of band-aids in our room apparently." he sighed, rubbing some Neosporin on the child's scrapped kneecap before placing a colorful band-aid onto the cut.

The dark-haired Titan's heart leapt at this kind-hearted display (even if it was his job), Although it's nice for him to have his own interests… Cautiously, Raven left her perch. She walked casually up to him and conveniently, the child bounced up from the ground and rushed back to the playground laughing as though nothing had happened at all. The other caretaker went to off to watch another part of the playground. He stood up slowly with a content smile on his face.

"A-hem."

"Raven!" he leapt up a few feet before awkwardly landing on his rear, "What are you doing here?" he rubbed the back of his neck nervously.

"I could ask you the same thing." she eyed her fingernails nonchalantly, "Having me worry like that isn't very gentleman-like you know."

"Whoever gave you the impression that I'm a gentleman?" he wiggled his eyebrows.

She tugged his cheeks in opposite directions in response, "That would be you-- remember?"

"Of course." he piteously replied, wincing as he felt even his gums flinching in pain.

She let go of his jowls unceremoniously and as it popped back into his face, he muttered something about a 'sensitive nerve ending' (he most likely was referring to her easily stoked and nasty temper). He pushed himself from the ground and brushed the dirt off of his clothing, "So you tailed me all the way out here huh? That's pretty sweet."

Before Raven could reply a few of the children came wondering over to the pair, no older than four or five, "Lowgee, Lowgee!" they exclaimed, "Come play with us!"

"Lowgee?" the dark-haired girl raised a brow at him.

"They're trying to say 'Logan', smarty pants." he gave her a mischievous smirk, "Even though most of the kids here can say my name, these three never seem to get it right," he paused to lift one of the boys onto his shoulders, the boy tucked his hands into the older boy's hair, "They are only five after all." he narrowed his gaze at her in an accusatory manner.

She blushed in embarrassment at this, "Yeah, I was worried about you." she coolly continued, "It's dangerous to turn your locator signal off." The two children that were standing on the grass, one boy and a girl, looked away from Beast Boy to look at the dark-haired girl. They seemed a bit intimidated by her presence, Okay, maybe I'm the one who shouldn't be around a younger generation…

His eyes lit up at this, "Gasp-- can it be? You missed me Raven!" he hugged her tightly, "Admit it! You missed your bubbly, cuddly boyfriend!!" The three children burst out in a chorus of giggles. The little boy that was sitting on his shoulders decided to join in the hug also by patting her head. Raven's eye twitched a bit at that.

"Lowgee's very silly." the little girl chirped.

"Yeah," the boy next her agreed, "Let's play now!" he raised his hands in the air.

"Just a minute," 'Lowgee' replied, "I'm going to talk to Raven and then we can play whatever you want." he plucked the boy from his shoulders to place him onto the ground again.

The three of them had already lost sight of his promise and ran off to play on the swings. He smiled warmly at the three as they disappeared into the mist of tumbling and playful kindergartners. He tugged her by the hand and started walking back towards the CDC, "I was just going to go-- I know you're working-- I don't need you to show me out."

"How about you stay instead?" he playfully asked, giving her a few kisses on the cheek as they walked, "I'm sure they'd be more than happy for two Titans to be around."

"I don't think so." she politely declined, "You saw how nervously those children were looking at me. They only lightened up because you were right there."

"Nah, they'll warm up to you with a wardrobe change." he winked tugging her hand once more and pulling her into a closet.

Raven fidgeted for the light switch in the dark, "What are you--"

His lips pressed hotly to hers cutting the sentence in half, "I can't help it-- seeing you now made me realized how much I missed you."

She murmured a little against his affectionate lips. He backed her against the wall next to the door. His hands intertwined into hers as they kissed in the dark. She managed to free her hands and wrap them around his waist. Absently, he let his fingers tangle in her hair, Has it really been that long since we've made out? What was I thinking? he transferred his kisses to her neck, and let his hands trail down her sides.

"Hm-mm," she shrugged away from his attention, realizing the repercussions instantly, "I don't think--" she fumbled for the light switch. She struggled to turn around far enough so that she could reach the switch, but in her efforts she'd managed to turn completely around. His hands rubbed her arms with a rigid intent, "I really, really miss you," his voice dropped, "if you know what I mean." he breathed the last part into her ear while hugging her from behind. He kissed her behind the ears, and rubbed her rear heatedly.

An intense blush stained her cheeks, "Stop it." her mind buzzed, his assiduousness was hard to ignore, Almost got it--

Of course every time she seemed closer to the light, he tugged her closer into his demonstrative body. She let him pull her back one last time. She sighed as the heat passed between them, before trying to turn around and face him. He didn't seem to keen on that either however; they had made out front to front before, but not back to front and it seemed to have quite the effect on him.

He attempted to snake his hands around her front again, "Stop it." she batted his friendly hands away, "We're in a closet at a Child Development Center--" her flush was full strength now once she realized how hotly agitated he actually was in that moment alone.

"It'd give us a chance to 'develop' a child of our own--" he remarked teasingly, some of his tension melting away, as he pulled her bum tightly against his hips.

After her bright blush had passed, an eye roll followed, "Look the light switch," she clicked it on with sarcasm still dripping in the air, "Lowgee's a deviant-- who would've guessed? With a name like engine lubricant--"

"Alright, alright," he laughed, fighting the embarrassment from his voice, as he released the intense grip he'd just been giving her, "I get it. Later." he took a brief moment to nip her ear before pulling completely away, "Just a minute."

She rubbed the spot a moment while she waited for him to return. And it was there in those shallow moments that she realized she could've used telepathy on the light switch (not that lighting had anything to do with making out-- even if she preferred the shadowed moonlight, it didn't matter to him-- but she had the suspicion that he knew that much about her-- she'd never voiced it).

She decided that the urgency of the situation distracted her from her more than human powers, that or she was worried about stinging the boy with a haywire discharge…Nope, I definitely thought about shocking him for his abrasiveness…

And after a few more stale minutes passed, he returned with a uniform in hand, "We keep the extra stuff in the back. It's pretty big closet, people would probably have a hard time finding us--" he suggested hinting at what he'd previously mentioned.

"No." she flatly replied ushering him out the door so she could change in peace. A few minutes later, she emerged with a white polo, and khaki. A blue colored apron with deep rooted pockets hung over her hips, and her hair was tugged back in an delicate sweep.

He smiled, "Beautiful, as usual." he dropped some band-aids, and other medical related supplies into her apron pockets.

The pair returned to the outside. A question poked the girl, "Why aren't you wearing an apron? Let me guess, you wanted to make me like a 'little doll'."

"Vest." he provided, tugging a flat open so that she could see a similar layout within it, "Does that make me an action figure?" he replied with an edge of wryness in his voice.

She hadn't noticed it before. Another wash of embarrassment hit her, but before she could scold herself for being so obtuse, he corrected her, "Don't be so hard on yourself Raven. Relax, you've taken care of children before."

"Yeah, well they were superheroes. I couldn't hurt them if I tried."

A couple of the children came bounding over to the pair. The three boys nearly tackled Beast Boy's legs, and a little girl wrapped her arms around Raven legs, "Affectionate aren't they?" she futilely tried to pry the girl from her legs. The girl seemed super-glued in place, however, and she was crying which Raven hadn't noticed before, "There, there." she tried to gently tug the girl away but it was no use-- she was born with suction cups for hands.

Beast Boy's laughter distracted her for a minute, she glanced over her shoulder to see the three boys chasing after him in the wide expanse of grass. He bounded to and fro agilely dodging the five and six year olds. And then he purposely slowed down which caused all of the boys to land roughly on top of the older boy. The changeling let out an exaggerated cry of defeat as the three stood up on his broad chest and stomach.

"You're our prisoner!" one of the boys declared.

"Oof," the Titan playfully remarked, and in an instant he disappeared. The three boys looked puzzled, but Beast Boy reappeared as a Labrador retriever and quickly weaved in and out of the energetic boys. They followed him eagerly as he dashed away into the thicker mass of children.

Raven sighed, He's a natural...she warranted the young girl a sympathetic look, a deep sigh rose from her lungs, "Come here." she offered her hands to the girl, and she quickly leapt into the older girl's arms. Raven felt confusion wash over her, This girl has never seen me before, why in the world is she so--

The younger girl wrapped her arms around the teenager's neck, "I knew you would protect me." she sighed as the tears on her face faded.

The Titan gave her a confused look, "You know me?"

"Yeah, you're Raven. You're a Teen Titan." the child gave the older girl a soft smile.

"Hm, so I am." she smiled, "What do mean protect you? Are you being bullied?"

"There's something scary in the bushes over there." she pointed towards a large clump of shrubs.

"I'm sure it's nothing." she replied, but kept her gaze warily on the clump of fronds, What if it really is something? What if some of the other children get near it? A ball of fur tumbled into her foot. A frisky looking puppy stared up at her with glowingly bright eyes, "Beast Boy-- I--"

She didn't get to finish her sentence because as soon as she looked up a bundle of five children came tumbling into the three of them knocking everyone to ground in a disheveled heap. They all groaned in unison. Raven lifted the girl up out of the dog pile, and slowly assisted the other children to stand again. Beast Boy giggled to himself as he sat up. She rolled her eyes at his childish behavior, but they were taking care of children after all.

"Hey," she tugged him by the arm before he could go racing off again, "Can you hold her a second?"

"C'mon Rae, don't push your followers onto me." he stuck his tongue out at her, and ironically he was so close that the curious child cradled in her arms reached forward and gently tugged his unusually pointed ears.

A look of wonderment adorned the young girl's face, "Logan, do you like having pointed ears?"

"Of course, all the better to hear you with." he gave her a cat-like grin as he twitched his ears. The girl recoiled her hands at the ticklish sensation that it brought and began giggling uncontrollably.

Raven sighed again, she couldn't shake the potential threat away, "Garfield, please."

His light-hearted demeanor dropped like an autumn rain, "Don't ever call me that."

She rolled her eyes, and the children giggled still tugging on his khakis in hopes of reclaiming his attention, "Lowgee," she correctly dryly, "She said that she saw something scary in the bushes over there." she diverted her gaze towards the bushes, and his eyes followed hers, "And I want to check, it could be something that is actually dangerous."

"I can go look." he happily volunteered.

"They follow you like ducks." the children chirped, or quacked rather, at this remark, "You'd lead them straight into trouble."

He blushed in embarrassment, "Right." he nodded, and took the young girl into his arms.

She cautiously approached the bushes never minding the trees that lay beyond it; she figured that it was as harmless as a dead animal, or even something as minor as a spider, but she needed to assure herself of this fact. With a darkened hand, she brushed back the fronds of the bush. A small white bunny sat there frozen in shock at the intruder's sudden appearance. Before relief could wash over the sorceress, she noticed some unusual heart markings on its side. Her eyes widened, Is that--? The rabbit's eyes lit up in a glowing red color as they focused on its target, "Get back! Get them away." Raven called over her shoulder to him. But the children nearest Raven had already started running away from the woods towards the building at her command.

With serious streak overtaking his form, he rushed to tell the other caretakers to get the children inside while ushering in every child he could along the way. He'd almost gotten all of the children inside when a red blast flickered out of the corner of his eye, but he was sure that no one was hurt by it because it was instantaneously countered by a black aura.

Raven was thumped backward a few feet from the force of the blast. She turned around to see that the all of the children had been safely escorted inside, and the few that hadn't were walking in the door at that very second. Beast Boy was already rushing to her side, he tore off his clothes in a heap with his obvious uniform blazingly underneath it. He gave her hand up, "What is it?"

"You're not going to believe it--" a bunny leapt through the trees and exploded in front of them cutting off her words. She had already formed a shield around them however.

"Mumbo!" they exclaimed together as the black energy fell in a cascade.

However the infamous imitation magician was nowhere to be seen. A swarm of the deadly rabbits came bouncing through the trees. The pair backed up a few steps, "Should we call the others?" he asked her as he prepped himself to take each and every one of the demonic bunnies out.

"I think we'll be fine on our own." her eyes glowed white as she summoned her inborn ability to manipulate.

A lumbering robot-like machine came crashing through the forest-y area with Mumbo perched atop it cackling about something or other. The robot stepped over the two without a blink, but the magician noticed them at once, "What do we have here? If it isn't my two favorite assistants!" he sounded confident, but glanced warily around wondering if the other three were also present.

Beast Boy growled under his breath and Raven didn't have to be an empath to feel the heat and aggression behind the actions that followed. It took him half a blink but he'd already leapt at the stupid, oddly colored contraption and knocked its owner off. The tiger growled threateningly at the magician. The animal bounded towards the fumbling magician as the human vainly tried to conjure some sort of trick. The robot remained stationary as though it only followed commands with a master perched atop it.

Raven was about to throw in her two cents but a tug at her leg focused her attention downward, "Raven, a bunny!" it was the little girl she'd comforted before holding one of Mumbo's demonic bunnies.

Raven batted it away quickly and formed a shield around the two of them. It exploded and the aftershock knocked Beast Boy's leap off balance sending him tumbling into the swing set. He fell so harshly into the swing that it spun him around the pole until he was tied to it. His eyes glazed over in dizziness and his tongue lolled out.

Stupid rabbits… Raven mentally cursed, blowing up the rest of the rabbits in the vicinity with a simple mind shock, "You need to go inside."

"Raven will protect me."

A pressure point formed on the older girl's head as more of the bunnies hopped around the pair, That's not the point!

The girl was suddenly grabbed from right in front of the empath. The girl's terrified scream filled the area as she was lifted into the air. Shocked, she tried to react but her teammate was much quicker. He'd managed to wiggle free of the swing set and pounced onto one of the robot's rainbow colored arm as a wolf. He raised his furry paws in an attempt to snap the appendage in half. Raven summoned some of her magic, but once again, Beast Boy had beat her to the punch-- managing to slash into the midsection of the robot with a bear claw. It stuttered awkwardly while Mumbo tried to regain control of the machine.

Beast Boy used the brute strength of bear paws to pry the long, wide pronged fingers of the robot's hand open, "Raven, catch!"

In a flash of black she flew under the girl and caught her mid-air before vanishing beneath the earth. She re-appeared in the CDC where the others were anxiously waiting, "Stay here." she commanded, disappearing in another wash of black.

Raven re-appeared outside to see Beast Boy struggling against the robot's unforgiving hand as it clenched against his body tighter and tighter, "Raven, l-little he-e-lp!" he pushed against the metal force but it was useless.

Mumbo cackled, "It seems to be the final act for this one."

The empath glared, "We'll see about that." she conjured some dark platform with her magic, and threw them at the robot's arms. With a sickening slice the arms fell onto the grass, taking the swing set and slide with it into the ground. Beast Boy groaned as the clenched fists unclenched. Sorely, a breath he didn't even know he was holding fell from his lips and he fell into a state of unconsciousness.

Raven was about to strike again, but Mumbo's words cut her short, "Uh-uh, not so fast little girl," he lifted up his sleeve, and a flock of pigeons came flying out, "There's still one last act to be had." He leapt onto his robot again and ushered it to go once more.

After the pigeon's flew swiftly by the empath, she flew to her teammate's side, she looked him over a second before hastening her pace after the villain. As soon as she turned around, a sound like Robin's birdarangs spilt the sky as it clanged against metal, "Robin?" her eyes alight with hope.

The robot fell onto it's back with a sizzling sound of defeat at it's victor's shoes, "Not even close," Bumblebee's form shined golden in the sunlight as she raised her trademark metal B's in the air, "this is our town, after all."

Raven lolled her tongue at this, Took you awhile...She re-joined her teammate's side, and pried the machine arms completely off of him. She lifted him into her arms, and turned to see the tail end of the battle. Mumbo was already clearing the back fence when Raven looked up again, but then of course Mas y Menos cut him off and knocked him down with the sheer recoil of their impressive speed. Speedy made quick use of his arrows and pinned the mad magician to the ground.

Bumblebee hooted in victory, "I told you that he wouldn't get too far!"

"Far enough." Raven interjected, "These children could've been seriously hurt. Why didn't you come quicker?"

"We had him cornered," Aqualad began, when he saw that, for once, Bumblebee was speechless, "a few streets over. And Mas and Menos knocked his wand away, but he said some magic words at the last second."

"He was on the other side of town a few minutes ago," Speedy coolly continued, as he nonchalantly flopped onto the back of the magician (who groaned at this), "How were we supposed to know where he went?" he rested his chin on an open palm. Mas and Menos seemed to agree with him by mocking his shrug, and chattering in Spanish (which she only halfway understood).

"That explains his lack of magic." Raven nodded to herself, cradling Beast Boy closer to her side.

"But it doesn't explain why you two are here." Bumblebee's voice suddenly returned.

"It's a free country." Raven replied dryly, much to the surprise of the Titans East.

The boys giggled while Bumblebee continued to look annoyed-- pressure point evident. The dark-haired yellow-clad girl cleared her throat, "We won't let it happen again. C'mon, let's take'em to jail already." she marched away with irritation awash her form.

The boys shrugged amongst themselves and Speedy tugged the crazy kook from his arrow bondage. Surprisingly Mumbo had nothing left to exclaim, demand, or promise, he merely remained silent as they dragged him off. A few seconds later, Mas and Menos rushed back and quickly dissembled the robot so that the rest of them could take the rubbish away. Raven sighed, with her hand a wash of black, "Azarath, Metrion Zinthos," her magic calmly compacted the metal into light and easy to carry pieces, there were significantly more, but with Mas and Menos's speed it'd be a simple job, "Well, be in touch." she waved them off.

With a sore heart, she stared at the severe damage that the playground incurred. It had been a surprisingly quick fight, but the playground was half ruined. She turned her gaze towards the CDC. The sad faces of children pressed against the clear panes of glass. She glowered at the ground, and then stared up at the clear sky. But before she could even curse it for being so blue, a downpour flooded over them. Beast Boy groaned at her side. She sighed despite the sunshine that glowed overhead, the steady stream of rain couldn't be denied.

She trudged through the grass, half-levitating Beast Boy so that she wouldn't have to stomach the weight herself. She was almost to the door when she heard him wheeze, "Raven," she glanced down at him with a bemused expression, "Look, a rainbow." he coughed again.

She looked behind her once more, and sure enough, there was a glimmering rainbow shimmering over the demolished playground, "So it is." she pushed the door open. As soon as she entered the room, twenty-something children and a caretaker walked over to him all painted with the same bewildered and anxious look as she laid him onto a blue mat

"Is he gonna be okay?" one of the younger ones asked.

"He's going to be super." she replied with a gentle smile. A wave of blue crystallized energy crashed over the green-skinned boy and a healing force coursed through him. He coughed a couple times, "Rae--" She placed a tender hand on his sternum, "Shush, you need rest. That was quite a squeeze he gave you."

He focused his half-lidded gaze on her, "I'll be alright."

"You should probably go home for today." his fellow caretaker piped in, a sympathetic look glued to her face.

"Carrie, it'll be--" he coughed harshly again.

"Logan!" one of the girl's squeaked, unable to keep herself back any longer, she gently flopped halfway onto his chest in what would've been a hug. He patted her back calmly, before persuading her to re-join the other children.

Raven had never sensed such a harsh internal injury before. She hadn't a clue what the repercussions would be if she didn't heal it completely. It wasn't hard for her to heal herself. It happened quickly, seamlessly, and in an effective manner, but healing others was a completely different scenario. Sometimes it was a full recovery, sometimes not.

"Let's give them some space." Carrie shushed the frightened children away from their beloved caretaker and into the reading corner.

Raven moved Beast Boy to the furthest corner in the room away from the children. With a warm fondness, she brushed her hand on his cheek and into his stray locks, "What were you thinking leaping at that robot like that? So recklessly?" she let her hand trail upon his chest a moment as a glazed expression filled her amethyst eyes, "You could've been seriously hurt. You probably are."

"You worry too much," he wheezed painfully wincing, "It's better me than that little girl anyway. They don't deserve that Raven."

She sharply inhaled, her heart felt like it was writhing in a vat of needles, "You really shouldn't speak." like a half-sliced, half-alive fish flopping helplessly on a hibachi grill, burned and tender, "I don't know how much damage he did to your chest cavity. I can't tell if your rib bones are crushed together--" She pushed two fingertips strategically into the end of the sternum, he sharply inhaled, "Raven! Don't--"

"Shush," she trailed them up a little ways, and pushed again, he wheezed harder, "It's easier for me to sense the damage this way. The rib cage is a tangled thing already, and when mixed with your other vital organs, it's hard to tell otherwise." she heard his breathing stall slightly. She pressed an ear to his heart, a hot blush filled her cheeks when she felt his arms wrap around her form, "Your heart's still beating so fast."

"It only gets like that," he coughed, "when I'm around you." he tried to wear a wry grin, but it came out pained.

"Cute," her expression empty, "But really, is your heart in any pain?" she blinked at him nervously.

"Only when you," he coughed again, "inflict it upon me," and then wheezed, "by sitting so far away."

She scooted closer, "If it'll get you to shut up." but there wasn't a trace of harshness in her words as she sat beside him as close as humanly possible. She rubbed her hands soothingly over his chest, "You're going to need some breathing therapy for this."

She waved her skilled hands over his body again, carefully straightening the awkwardly bent rib bones and soothing the bruises he'd incurred in his lungs. After a few more trails of energy, she'd healed all of his major injuries.

She was about to pull away, but he caught her wrist, "Thanks Raven."

"Of course." she pressed a kiss to his cheek, "They can't do without you." he gave her a curious look, "And that includes me too." he grinned at this. She brushed back a few of his sweaty strands of hair before returning to the children.

She crossed the room easily, glad to see them entranced in a story, of course it was brusquely interrupted by her mere presence, "He's fine." she held her hands up defensively hoping that their teary faces would smile again, "He's going to have to take it easy for a bit, that's all."

Some of the five year olds looked at her curiously, and then at each other with perplexity awash their faces, "I mean, his lungs are going to hurt for a bit." They seemed to understand it when she put it this way. She sighed, turning her attention to Carrie, "We're going to have to go home though. It's better if he gets some rest. He probably won't be coming back for a week or more."

"Oh, that bad huh?" she nervously addressed.

"I think one of his ribs might have poked a small hole into one of his lungs. I have to do a closer examination to tell--" she blushed a little at the thought of having to remove his shirt to do so.

"Oh," Carrie didn't seem to completely understand, but wished them well anyway.

--

Beast Boy coughed harshly as he lay in the cold med cot sheets. Raven sighed, as Cyborg hooked him up to some machines nearby, "A robot crushed his lungs together?" he repeated in disbelief for the millionth time, "He's lucky to be alive."

"Yes, he is. He's lucky I went snooping." she cast a pointed glare at Robin who was sitting on the far side of the med bay with Starfire anxiously awaiting the verdict.

"Raven, I've said it before, and I'll say it again," he sighed sorely, "He knows what the repercussions are of working alone. I warned him about it, but he didn't listen, as usual."

"I'm right," Beast Boy's coughing interrupted him again, "here you know."

"It's strange though," her calm, reflective gaze filled with amazement, "if he did have such a hole, he wouldn't even be able to breathe at all." she glanced at Cyborg, "What does it say?"

"You're right." Cyborg punched in a few more command functions, "Diagnosis says he's clear. He's probably still so shook up about it that his body's over-reacting and making it harder for him to breathe." Raven nodded, she had drawn the same conclusion earlier, but she wanted to make sure by getting a second opinion, "The best thing for him now is rest. Alright, let's give him some space."

The dark-haired empath waited until the others filed out. She tugged the medical curtain around the pair. She crawled into the cot next to him, "How are you feeling?"

"Rae? What are you doing?" he asked lazily.

"Well, there's a chance that machine didn't pick up on my other suspicions," she trailed a hand over his chest, he shivered, "And I really want to make sure that there isn't even the slightest damage to your lungs left over." nervously she fingered the edges of his shirt (they decided it would be better for his body to relax if he wasn't wearing his uniform), "And there's only one way for me to do that." she hoped that by that point he'd caught her drift.

He wheezed in what sounded like laughter, "Raven, you don't," he coughed, "have to make up excuses to see me shirtless."

She blushed pink at this, "I-I'm not!" she exclaimed indignantly.

He sat up a little and tugged his shirt off by himself, before flopping onto the cotton-y sheets. She closed her eyes a second before looking at him through her peripheral vision, "Feel away, Nurse Raven." he wiggled his eyebrows suggestively.

She twitched at his remark, Well it was a nice day… she inhaled deeply before refocusing her gaze on his bare chest. A sudden wave of attraction hit her, Damn, I can't focus like this…I'm not even sure I can do this right… her eyes wandered over his well-developed muscles without any restraint.

"What'samatter Rae-Rae?" he let a half chuckle stained with wheezing pass his lips, "You've seen me shirtless before."

"Yes, but that was at the beach." she hissed, "This is different."

He rolled his eyes at her, "Whatever Raven."

She blushed even harder when she gazed upon the laughter in his eyes. Letting go of a breath she didn't know she was holding, she re-focused on her task. A delicate hand curiously swept across his chest, and she saw him nervously studying her movements out of the corner of her eye. They had been together longer than just the summertime-- now that she thought about it. She placed her palm against his right pectoral muscle.

"Raven, aren't my lungs lower than that?" a facsimile of a tease in his voice.

"I'm curious-- is that okay with you?" she bit back, "After all, your nature has been rubbing off on me lately."

"I'm sure that it won't be the only thing of mine--"

She covered a hand over his mouth, "Don't even finish that sentence," she grumbled, "You're such a deviant."

"Lots of people--" she pressed her palm to his mouth again.

"Anyway--" she gave him a pointed look. He just chuckled in a wheezing manner.

She rubbed her hands in a circular motion against the aforementioned muscle area. He sighed contently-- it felt almost as good as a massage. A tender blush grew on her features as she satiated her curiosity for him. Two of her fingers wafted down his sternum barely gracing the edges of his skin. In a unexpected sweep, he took her hands, and placed them over his abdomen, "How do you like them? Recently fine-tuned."

Her face couldn't get any redder as he mildly pushed her hands into his abs, "This will only take a second." she tried to retain a modicum of businesslike manner, but that was long lost already.

"Really? Only a second? Aw…" he cheekily remarked; he seemed to be getting his voice back in full swing.

"Actually, this might take a bit." she continued in a serious fashion, "But don't distract me, I couldn't focus before, and your shirt was in the way so there's a chance--"

"Shush," he let a fingertip graze over her lips in a silencing manner, "I'll behave." a goofy grin playing on his face.

"For once." she smiled before placing a knee on each side of his body to get a better angle.

Before she could proceed, he interrupted again, "You can sit on my waist Raven, it's not like you haven't already."

She stuck her tongue out in apathy at the idea, "I'm pretty sure that would only distract you even more." she smoothed a hand through his tussled hair, "I--"

He gave her an off-balancing tap, she flopped unceremoniously onto his 'recently fine-tuned' abdomen, and he placed a hand on each of her hips, "Fine." she grumbled.

Her eyes were focused on her task but she could feel him staring at her curiously. She sucked in a deep breath and let her hands graze over the tops of where his lungs would be. Her lips parted oh so slightly as she leveled her gaze with his, smoothing her fingertips over his chest in a slow and calculating manner. Flickers of transparent blue danced about her fingers as she analyzed his situation.

A fragment of a relieved smile played on her lips; in a calm, tiredly slow motion, she pulled her hands from him. She let her magic fall from her fingertips, gently gliding her hands into his hair, "Any pain, discomfort?" she lowered her body to so that she could hug him, "You're fine as far as I'm concerned."

"Especially now." he laughed, wrapping his arms around her, "You know what else?"

"Hm?"

"If you're still curious, you could always--"

She sat up to give him a pointed look, "This sentence better not end in 'rubbing' anything."

He snickered, "I was going to say that you could use your lips to search for any more possible damage." he wiggled his eyebrows, a laugh in his eyes as she turned a deep shade of pink, "After all," he pushed himself off of the cot, his body only a few breaths away from hers, "the lips are pretty sensitive things." he left a kiss on her cheek.

A contemplative look graced her face for a fraction of time, before she pushed him back into the cot, "You shouldn't be moving with so many injuries Beast Boy." she replied flatly, but there was a fire that burned behind her gaze he couldn't read. Her calculating gaze became very unnerving to him as she seemed to be debating with herself over something. But as soon as he felt her lips brush his neck, he realized instantly what that fire was-- he'd seen it plenty of times before, but each time seemed much different from the last-- burning brighter and more fluidly than the time before it.

"Raven…" he weakly wheezed.

But she didn't seem to be listening to him anymore, she was completely focused on rubbing her hands against his lower chest and stomach. Her lips pressed against his collarbone briefly before her attention was drawn down his sternum. A low moan fell from his lips as her mouth worked against the tender muscles of his chest. One of her hands trailed his side, her cheek brushed his chest hair for a fraction of a second before she pulled away from him in a distracted manner.

"Don't spoil--me or anything." he half-coughed in what would've been a sarcastic tone if he hadn't been wheezing so much.

She pushed off of the cot, "Someone's coming, okay?" she smiled softly, leaving a kiss on his cheek, "Maybe later." a smirk playing on her lips.

--

"Not so fast! You'll hurt yourself." Raven indignantly cried after a few of the six year olds as they tumbled gracelessly through the grass and into the sandbox. She groaned again floating over to where the three had fallen, a happy feeling of relief flooded over her as she saw their smiling and giggling faces. They weren't hurt in the least.

"You should know better than that, children never listen."

She glanced behind her at the sound of her boyfriend's voice. Beast Boy was nestled under a tree with a few of the quieter and calmer children sitting nearby. They were playing some version of 'Duck, Duck, Goose' from what the empath could tell. With a relaxed smile she floated over by the group, "Speaking of children," she gave him a sharp look as two of the children seemed to be taking turns being hoisted up and down on a familiar green kangaroo tail, "I thought I told you not to overexert yourself."

"Technically, you're my replacement, and relax," he gave his tail a gentle flick, "this is easy enough."

A relaxed smile reclaimed her features, "Alright then, I--"

"Don't you have children to be watching Raven?" he cheekily interjected as the children around him giggled and covered their mouths as though they had been caught with a hand in the cookie jar.

Raven rolled her eyes at this and floated away from the group, but on the inside she was smiling. He'd made quite recovery, and despite the fact that he wasn't one-hundred percent yet, he had ardently insisted on coming to work anyway. He claimed, "It's like you said, they need me. They'd miss me too much."

--

Raven stacked the last of the colorful blocks into a bin with the others. All of the children had been picked up about an hour ago, but there was still cleaning and straightening up to do. She walked towards the cabinet for some cleaning supplies. Carrie had finished her half of the work which left the Titan on her own. She sprayed some Windex on the glass windows. Absently, she wiped a paper towel over the wet spot.

A pair of strong arms wrapped around her waist, "Pretty lady," he teased, whispering against her ear, "I've lost my shoe."

She blushed, "He was five, give him a break."

"Who's teasing? He's got great taste." his smile brushed against her neck.

Briefly she paused to pat his hand affectionately, "Thanks, but really," she wiped more of the glass, "Are you so incapacitated that you can't clean windows?"

"You told me not overexert myself, and I think chores fall into that distinct category."

She rolled her eyes, "And taking care of twenty-something children isn't?"

"No, but taking care of you sometimes qualifies."

"Then don't touch me anymore." she quipped, flashing him a smile, "Since I'm so hard to handle."

"And miss out on all the exercise?"

She nearly slapped him for that comment, but a dry laugh passed her lips, "You're impossible!"

"So are you. We match." he grinned turning her around. A dreamy look in his eyes, "Raven, I should've said it earlier, but I'm--" he offered her another guilty look, "I'm sorry. If I hadn't been going off alone all the time--"

"Shush," she placed a delicate fingertip to his lips.

He recoiled at this however, "Windex!" he spat, lolling his tongue out indignantly.

"Sorry," she laughed, "Consider us even from earlier then."

He held his mouth under the facet of the sink and rushed the water over his lips in an effort to free it from the putrid taste, "What'd I do earlier?"

"Telling those kids that I'd like to have a Play-Doh castle for a hat." she couldn't help but smile at it though, as she rubbed the smears out of the window.

"Haha, that was pretty funny though." he reclaimed his spot behind her, and rested his chin on her shoulder.

The pair relaxed in the silence as she finished cleaning the windows. Once she'd finished, and put everything away, she pierced him with her purple gaze, "What were you saying earlier? Before the Windex messed you up."

"Oh, that? It's not important." he shrugged as she followed him out the door.

"I was just going to say," she glanced at him again, "I don't mind that you wanted to have a job, or anything like that. I just wish you wouldn't have been so secretive about it."

"We're all prone to our own secrets Raven." he nudged her playfully as they walked down the street, "I just didn't want Robin telling me I couldn't-- that's all."

"Well, I have to admit," a small tinge of pink on her cheeks, "It is the best way to spend the summer."

"My point exactly," he winced a bit at that point, he sensed waves of hurt coming off of his companion, "I'll try and ask for some time off-- it's not fair to you that I'm never around."

"You don't--"

"Raven, what's the point of being 'together', if we never actually are together?" he tucked his hand into her hers as a reassurance, "I just got caught up-- they're all so cute."

She smiled warmly at him, "I know."

"But I can think of few million ways to make it up to you, I was being selfish and neglectful even on the weekends. But I mean you like your space after all--" he seemed to be arguing with himself and explaining himself to her at the same time.

She quirked a brow, "I like space, not solitary confinement."

"You always have Robin to keep you company."

Raven actually snorted at that comment, "Yeah right. You wouldn't believe how grumpy he's been since you started this job thing. He probably just misses you," she added wistfully, while he nodded, "He told me you give him good night kisses-- so I can see why he'd miss you." she deviously added, smirking at the way his face faulted.

"He told you WHAT?!"

"I'm kidding, relax," she smirked before flying off in a blue streak.

He paled considerably for a second, "I know where you live missy!" he took off after her in a flash of feathers. And so that was how the summer went, spending time together on the weekends while he continued to work during the week. However their teammates were none the wiser about their interesting predicament.

--

"Raven, I never got to thank you for filling in for me at work." Beast Boy told her as he leaned on her doorframe.

She had her back turned as she folded clothes into her dresser, "Oh, it was nothing. It was nice getting away from the Tower for awhile."

Suddenly, his arms were wrapped around her, much akin to the fashion of her first visit to the CDC. She'd sensed him walking into her room, but she hadn't noticed him steadily approaching her. She straightened herself out slowly, "Beast Boy--"

"It meant a lot to me." he interjected, capturing one of her hands into his own and pressing his chest to her back, "And I want to repay you for all those long working hours."

"Really," her face involuntarily flushing crimson, "it was nothing."

He pressed his cheek against hers, "C'mon, you deserve this-- after all of my painful neglect." he seemed to mock his own choice of words, his free hand rubbing her side heatedly. In a swift motion, he turned her to face him, a lusty look in his eyes.

"At least let me finish putting the laundry away." her voice dry as she tried to recompose her desire. She seemed about to speak again, but she bit her lip in anticipation instead-- the expression she wore was one he couldn't read. She stared at him deeply, her purple eyes seeming to stare through him. He flinched and felt his heartstrings pull-- he felt weak when she looked at him that way-- even a mere glance was enough for him to melt into.

He backed her gently against the wall, "It's always the wall isn't it?" he laughed, pressing his lips against hers. He wrapped her into his arms flawlessly and lovingly, breathing in her soft scent. Tangling his fingers into her hair, she returned the gesture and twined her delicate fingers into his locks. She felt his grip tighten, and she sighed, relishing the feeling of being against his chest-- warm and protected.

She drew her fingertips across his face as he lowered his mouth to her neck. She sighed contentedly; this was the way it was supposed to be, in her room, late at night, and in the moonlight. She rubbed his back in a vain attempt to soothe his desire into a slower one, but he'd already fallen down that slippery slope awhile ago. He broke away for a minute, "I want to make you feel beautiful, Raven." he huskily breathed into her ear, his teeth grazing the edge of it.

"Then quit talking, and show me." she murmured against his sensitive ear with an intensity of her own.

Abashedly, a flare of passion struck his heart, "Since when do you, talk like that?" but he was already ravishing her with an affectionate kiss and was quickly tugging her towards the bed before she could even breathe let alone speak-- it was probably a rhetorical question anyway. She let him tug her a few more steps before taking the initiative to push him onto the bed breaking their kiss completely. He looked bemused for a minute; a rare Cheshire cat-like grin on her face, she crawled over him, "I thought you were better at this sort of thing--" she lowered her lips to his neck in a blink, feeling him writhe nervously under her, "I guess I can be wrong about something every once in awhile…"

Another shiver flitted down his spine as she stroked his sides in unison; her tongue still hot against his neck. His hand trailed down her back until her could get a nice grip onto her hips. A pair of his fingers pressed down in a sloping motion, before he got an upper hand, and switched their positions yet again, "Oof," disgruntled, she glared up at him, "Does it really matter that much to you?" she was referring to their compromising position and his favoritism to being the 'dominating' one.

"Yes," he shallowly breathed, resting his lower half onto hers, pressing them tightly together. A small sigh fell from her lips. He lightly kept his chest against hers. With her fingertips tangled into his hair, and her eyes glazed with a facsimile of what could be considered affectionate, "You're a jerk."

He ran his fingers gently through her hair while meeting her gaze with an equally attentive one. Keeping a longing stare locked, "That's what you always say," he nuzzled his cheek against hers so that his lips could graze the edge of her ear, "But you never mean it." Shivers ran down her spine at his raw intensity. The distance between them disappeared in shallow heartbeats as though he'd never kissed her before in his life; calculating, brief, detached. She pushed her hands into his side as though to scold him for being so stingy with his affection.

A smiled played on his lips with a trembling nervousness that wrapped so tightly around his heart, he thought he'd burst in the sheer entertainment of making her squirm. She pushed her hand against his chest with a much stronger and deliberate force. A tangled emotion caught between lust and true affection parted his lips as they delicately brushed hers again. He moved against her easily, confidently, as though he'd never been nervous a day of his life. He continued to kiss her as she wrapped her arms around his neck-- finally satisfied with his more passion-glazed kisses.

Elation consumed him once her lips began to work against his. A tantalizingly slow temptation for him to follow her winding ways. Her tongue tip flicked against his lips antagonizing him to deepen the kiss. He complied with little argument letting his tongue dance with hers in swift, and curving strokes. Murmurs rose from the couple as their kissing grew stronger. Her fingertips slid up his neck to draw them against his cheekbones. Smoothly, the tips drew and rubbed against his ears. An undercurrent of heat hit her subconscious. He exhaled forcefully, "I don't think that's such a good idea."

She laughed softly, "No wonder you brag about your ears so much." she drew one hand down his chest, but when he felt her intentions lower, her batted her hand away, "Hey now--"

She sighed, and resigned her hands to his shoulders instead. He seemed a bit winded, as he lowered himself beside her. Another devious idea crossed her subconscious, "Are you sure your over that lung injury? It was almost a month ago," she trailed her hand teasingly over his chest, "I could always search for any remaining damage with my lips." before he could protest however, she kissed the taut fabric that covered his chest.

"I'm fine, really." he yawned, "Just strangely tired."

She pretended to glance down at her 'watch', "But you haven't beaten your last record yet." she dryly replied, sitting up and resting her chin on her palm.

He rolled his eyes at this, another yawn permeating his words, "Gimme a min."

It was almost humorous-- he was worn out before she was-- completely unheard of-- she didn't have long to ponder that humorous irregularity before his lips crashed against hers, and he tugged at her uniform. Her hands clawed down his sides in sudden confusion. Chest pressed to chest, his fingers unzipping the upper half of her uniform. She tugged on his clothing at this, hotly pulling him down to her. His knees buckled, and his waist collided into hers, a moan fell from each of their lips as their uniforms were quickly shoved halfway down, he attempted to tug hers down further, "No-- it's too late for all of that." she interjected.

"Aw," he booed, kissing her lips, and smoothing his hands over her chest with no restraint, the girl moaned into his mouth, as their bodies rocked against each other. She sounded faint as he unclasped her bra. Her fingers tangled into his hair, and it was his turn to massage his mouth against her chest. The tiny whimpers that flitted from her mouth were enough for him, he broke apart for a moment. Smiling, he rested his forehead against hers, "And to believe you were more worried about putting your laundry away." he nuzzled her nose sweetly.

"I know, the very idea." she smirked, still huffing, her face flush red as she tried to reclaim her breath.

He flopped down next to her, a huff in his voice, "Maybe we'll get to 'beautiful' some other time. I didn't realize how tired I am." there was a frown on his face as he reluctantly claimed the spot next to her.

"Oh no, I think you've done quite enough." she smirked snuggling into his chest, a calm reprieve flowing over her as the pair snuggled under the covers and drifted off to sleep.


Okay then, if you liked it, kindly tell me what ya think. :)

And on a side note, this story actually turned out differently than intended. Originally, I was going to give it more of a moral base, but oh well, I liked how it turned out. And in case any of you were wondering, 'Neonate Advancement' is just a fancy way of saying 'Child Development'. 'Neonate' techinically means 'infant' however.

Wysti