Sum: (One-Shot) (I know this kind of thing has been done before, but I'd like to try my hand at closed-space entrapment ^^, so be kind) Accidents happen … but what they don't tell you is how to deal with them without completely losing your mind.
A wise girl kisses, but doesn't love, listens, but doesn't believe, and leaves before she is left.
- Marilyn Monroe
"What did you do?!" Robin exclaimed when he saw Raven and Red X wink out of existence.
Larry, his inter-dimensional counterpart, coward behind Starfire's hair and wrapped it around his body as a comforting blanket to shield him from Robin's wrath. Murder, was in the Boy-Wonder's eyes and he was seriously contemplating just what brand of chlorine worked best under black-light, meaning, which one was able to go undetected to the untrained eye. Smoke steamed out of his nose and ears as he marched to Starfire and made a grab for the quivering Larry, Starfire, in turn held up her hands to stop him. Unknowingly preventing a murder that would have taken place, she pleaded with Robin, "Please, no more with the shouting now, yes? Surely, the Larry will be able to fix the problem," she reached around an grabbed Larry by the head, holding him up she glared evil emerald eyes on him that would have made Raven proud, "Yes …"
It was a hiss, it was inhuman … of course, that would make sense wouldn't it?
She technically wasn't human, but now wasn't the time to argue technicalities, he giggled nervously and floated from Starfire's iron grip to hover before the bewildered – and murderous – Titans, "Well … um … sure, I can fix it … I think."
Robin reached up and grabbed a fist full of Larry's vest to bring him down to his eye level, "You think or you know."
He trembled, "Wh-wh-what I meant to say was … um … first I have to figure out … um … where … I … sent … her …"
"You mean you don't know!!"
"Not really … I can sense her somewhere, just … not … where exactly."
"Just please tell me you at least know how to find her!"
Larry smiled hopefully, "That! I do know!" He held up his glowing finger, "The closer we get to her, the brighter it shines and judging by the dull glow, I say she's at least still in the city. Cool huh?"
Even Beast Boy growled, "That is totally, not cool dude, why are you even here?"
Larry wiggled himself free from Robin's grasp and tried to offer up a smile of apology, but Robin wasn't having any of it, neither were any of the other Titans, downcast, he shrugged his shoulders and sighed heavily, "Well … I saw how hard and how close Robin was to catching Red X and I thought with my powers I might be able to help is all … but …"
Cyborg finished for him, "But you goofed and instead transported Raven to another location."
Robin scowled, "If Raven gets hurt because we're not there to provide backup against Red X I'm holding you accountable, Larry."
"Yeah, I know … but think of it this way," he perked up, "at least she's not dead! Mixing my powers with hers would have ended all existence as we know it! Or … maybe it did end all existence as we know, but we just didn't know it, so there was no real way of knowing it ended since we probably brought it back into reality anyway, ya know?"
Beast Boy's brain did back-flips, Cyborg frowned, Starfire sighed heavily, and Robin wasn't amused, "I don't care about reality right now, find Raven or go back wherever you came from."
Larry shrank away from the angry Robin, gulped and nodded vigorously, determination burning his eyes as he weakly gave Robin a stern salute, "I'll do my best Robin I –"
Robin grabbed his vest again and growled, "I don't want you to do your best Larry, I want you to find her."
"O-o-okay … I will, I promise."
"Okay, so tell me again why you can't simply faze us out of your own Tower?"
"Because we're not in Titans Tower, we're in Larry's dimensional imaginings of Titans Tower and mixing my powers with his in anyway could spell the complete and total annihilation of all inter-dimensional existence."
"Oh, well that about makes sense," Raven heard Red X scoff sarcastically as he propped himself against the hard black wall of the dark and gloomy room she knew to be formed in the exact way of 'Robin's' Observation Room. So dubbed, because her obsessive compulsive leader took his job waaay too seriously; he spent most of his hours in the room solving puzzles and decoding messages. An unhealthy habit she was sure was written down somewhere in some unread medical book, but to Robin it was a way of life. It was quite similar to breathing. With nothing but the glow of the computer illuminating the room and none of the light-switches working, Raven sat in front of the desk, lotus form, and began to meditate. Until she sensed Red X's irritation, "Aren't you going to do anything about this?"
She cracked open an eye to gaze in the general direction she heard the thief's voice derive from, he was hiding in shadows, her first thought, cowardice, "I would, but do you want to end all inter-dimensional life as we know it?"
"If it gets me out of this box, yeah."
"That means you too you know."
"Argh!" In a pure outburst of sudden violence he turned around and punched the door that would have been the exit out of the Observation Room, now served only to be a mere decoration and in X's case a punching bag when he put an impressive dent on the steel door. The suit was still functional, so the extra boost from the xinothium helped to numb the pain of what he knew to be severely bruised knuckles. He winced and watched helplessly as the door 'healed' itself and seemed like nothing had ever occurred. He muttered, "God I hate magic."
Raven closed her eyes and returned to meditating, "Acting like a spoiled child isn't going to get us anywhere."
"Like sitting on the ground is going to get us out of here? Newsflash, you're trapped in here too ya know."
She finally opened her eyes and glared daggers at the coarse villain, "What's the matter? Scared of a little jail-cell? The concept is similar, only the room is much smaller where you're headed."
He crossed his arms over his chest and leaned back on his heel, of course Raven couldn't see this fully, but the outline she depicted through the thin lighting pouring out the bottom of the door he stood beside, so it helped her grasped the general appearance. He wasn't scared of her, and through her empathetic powers she could also sense he was more so annoyed with her presence than she was with his. "Jail-cells are child's play, you think a couple of bars and a closet sized room is going to hold me, Sunshine, think again."
"I don't have to; even if you happen to escape we would have already figured out your identity, there will be no where for you to hide after that."
He snickered condescendingly, "Yeah, sure, I'll leave you to your fantasies of me in hand-cuffs, who am I to deny you the pleasure of such a false victory."
His voice, digitalized anyway, was like listening to fingernails scrapping down chalkboards. The sound of it wasn't as irritating as the tone of voice and the knowledge – or rather lack thereof – of who was saying it. Whoever was under that suit had enough of an attitude to get under her skin, and too much skill to back it up. In the cover of darkness she watched his outline shift from the door to the far corner of the room, further away from her and deeper in shadow. She arched a brow suspiciously, then closed her eyes and sat still in silent meditation.
The best way to handle a person with attitude was not to give them anymore firewood to feed off of, meaning all she had to do was ignore him and he won't be able to get under her skin. Unlike Beast Boy who tries and tries to gain her attention by insisting on yammering away with so many unfunny jokes that were so unfunny they couldn't even get a sympathetic laugh out of anyone bothering to listen to it. He was easy to silence, say something mean and sarcastic and he'd clam up, but Red X, Raven figured, was even easier to get along with. Say nothing, ignore him, and he'll avoid her like the plague, cause she was, after all, a Titan. Anything he says will be self-incrimination, every time he opens his mouth he'd have to carefully filter his words so he didn't give anything away, too complicated to think about, so Raven figured he'd opt for saying nothing at all.
Mutual understanding, common ground reached, silence assured, and her sanity intact.
However, that didn't necessarily stop him from physically bothering her, she heard his clothing shift, felt his presence grow restless after exactly six minute of standing still, and finally sensed his emotions pitching in all sorts of directions. Neither of them settling, she opened her eyes when she felt the cool air brush against her face, she looked up and watched his billowing cape follow its owner behind the desk. Suspicious, she got up and glared at him for barely a fraction of a second before she realized he took his face mask off. Underneath was a black bandana pulled over the top of his head with little eye holes cut open for, well, his eyes of course.
She was immediately reminded of that one movie with the reckless thief who stole from the rich and gave to the poor … the Mexican version of Robin Hood, what was his name again? He looked up at her and his pursed lips grinned showing her a wonderful row of dazzling white teeth. He was handsome alright, that much she'd give him, but with her arms crossed over her chest she sneered when she finally put a finger on the name, "You look the part, but Zorro isn't as selfish as you are."
He chuckled, and without the digital mask it sounded like music to her ears, but she honestly thought he'd be older … his voice richer, instead he sounded like some street-rat looking for his next meal. Or rather, his next target, she knew what files that computer held and so she walked around the desk to try and stop him, but when he pressed one button the computer screen turned into a pair of comical lips and spat at them flashing them a very pink tongue. It laughed hysterically before morphing back into a computer screen, Red X leaned away from it cautiously and with Raven they both glanced at one another before he grumbled and leaned on the desk to glare at the darkness.
"Well, this stinks, this Larry guy may have got the gloom and doom atmosphere down, but he lacks details." With a careless backhand he slapped the screen on its side and knocked it on the floor. It crashed, cracked, and the entire room blacked out. It was, after all, their only source of light.
Raven sighed in exasperation, "Great, and now we're in complete darkness … if I didn't know any better I'd call you a genius, but since I do know better you're an idiot."
She glared in the direction his voice came from when he suddenly stood straight up and retorted, "Hey, I'm not the one with the whacked out friends that unknowingly sent me off into another dimension and fail to bring me back."
She walked away from him, annoyed by his whining, "I never said we were in another dimension –"
"But you said –"
"I know what I said," she snapped suddenly, "but this isn't another dimension, where Larry's from is another dimension, this is a space ripped right out of space-time where reality is bent around it, like a bubble. We could be up in the clouds, or in the middle of the street, but not entirely out of our dimension. Merely hovering between existence and … something else." She massaged the sides of her head and turned away from him, using her memory of the real layout of the Observation Room she walked around the desk to, again, sit on the ground.
At this point, it was the only safe thing she trusted to stay still, and her suspicions were correct when she heard X try to sit on the chair, but it screamed and rolled itself to the far corner of the room where it coward from X's cussing exclamations. Once again, he voiced his opinions on magic, "Ooo, I hate magic, I hate it so much."
Raven figured it'll just give her a headache to explain that this wasn't exactly magic, but more like the bent reality of quantum physics, of course she didn't expect a thief like Red X to understand the complicated educated drabble, so she didn't bother. However, if he was smart enough to decode and reset the Towers encryption-codes so he could wander in search of the Red X suit. Maybe he was educated enough in electronics, maybe he was an engineer of sorts, and maybe the Titans can use that knowledge to their advantage to catch him. She sighed heavily again and propped her chin in her fist, And maybe Robin already thought of it.
He wasn't the leader of the Titans for nothing.
She buried her face in her hands this time when Red X crawled around the table to sit beside her, only he overshot his target and ended up placing his hand heavily on her thigh and hurting her unknowingly with the added weight. She leapt away with a scream of discomfort, "Ahhh!!"
"Oh, sorry –" He pulled away immediately and never knew what hit him when a sloppily aimed kick found its mark and he was knocked to the ground cradling his chest in pain, "Shit! I said I was sorry!"
She scuttled away from him, "Look, why don't you stay over there," she pointed in the darkness, "and I'll stay over here, just so we can establish a clear sense of mine and thine."
"Ugh," she heard him grunt as he pushed himself back in a sitting position, and wheezed in pain. She almost felt guilty, they were both trapped in this hole as equals, but the guilt passed as soon as it came when she heard him say, "in case you haven't noticed, I don't have night-vision where the hell are you talking about?"
She growled in frustration, "Over there, at the door, where you were before. Go over there and leave me alone."
"Jeez, you're so frickin' touchy, no wonder your friends haven't come yet, I wouldn't be excited to save someone as crabby as you either."
That hurt, lucky her it was dark enough to hide the pain on her face as she pulled her knees to her chest and glared at the bleeding light through the crack in the ground. Normally hurtful comments from a villain's mouth wouldn't bother her in the least, Red X really wasn't any different, but lately she's just been feeling cut off from the rest of her friends. Now-a-days it was my boyfriend this, or my girlfriend that and since she wasn't one for relationships there was nothing for her to relate with her friends. One by one she watched them pair off two by two, even Beast Boy managed to get Terra – er, Tara – from that school to go out on a date with him.
How that relationship was going, she didn't really bother to know, but according to the bright smile on his face he sported more often than not she figured it was going splendidly. Everyone had someone, but that's not the point, it didn't matter to her that she was the only Single Titan in the Tower now. Oh no, she was actually proud of that fact since she was now the self-entitled reasonable person with her head on straight enough to see passed the clouded-drama. What got her was the loneliness, she had no one to relate to, and everyone always seemed busy with their significant other that it had been easy enough to forget all about her.
It happened once, at a beach party, everyone had a date and everyone had assumed the other had told Raven about the party, but since no one confirmed her arrival she was left alone. She had brushed it off as an accident and even told her friends not to worry about it, that it was okay and they should have fun anyway. She didn't even like beach parties, but the fact she was left unchecked bothered her … she was becoming insignificant again, going unnoticed.
She shook her head, Stop it! That was ages ago! You still haven't let it go! It was an accident, and who cares, you don't even like parties! It was the principle of the thing, Principle? You're going to cry over principles?! Raven swallowed a gulp of air and slowly exhaled, her inner-self was right; she was pouting and groaning over nothing. Get over it. Red X will not get the better of her.
So she closed her eyes, lolled her head back and again began to find her center.
"So what's with the belt?"
Her concentration was shattered when she heard the thief from across the room – at least he listened to her – ask bluntly. She bowed her head and tried not to blow them to oblivion just because she couldn't control her rage, stiffly, she responded, "What?"
He made a gesture, she couldn't see it, "Your belt … I mean it doesn't seem to do anything, so is it a fashion statement or what? What's with it?"
She arched a suspicious brow, even glanced around the room to be sure she wasn't being set up, for what she wouldn't know, but being trapped in a box with an enemy wasn't helping her imagination anyway, "You're curious to know about my belt?"
"Yeah, it's the most fascinating thing in the world to me – of course I don't give a care about your belt, but since it looks like we're gonna be here a while we might as well play twenty-questions. You ever play that game?"
"… No, and I don't intend to play anything with a thief."
"Fine, but seriously, the belt, I never took you for a trend-setter."
Raven sneered, "Trend-setter? Do you see kids running around with hooded capes?"
"Do you have some kind of personal problem with me, what did I ever do to piss you off?"
"For one thing, I just don't like you," of course that's not what she said a loud, oh-no, if she did that, that'll just be more encouragement for him to go on a tirade that she really didn't need right now. Instead, what she really said was, "Anger is pointless, emotions are useless in these situations."
He scoffed, "So you're not the least bit angry that you can't do anything about getting out of here? You're really just going to sit still like some damsel in distress and wait for help."
She sat up straight, "That's the general idea."
"O-kay, so, Damsel, if that's gonna be the plan, mind if you fill me in on the belt-thingie … what's that all about?"
He's not going to let that go? She was more curious as to why he wanted to know so badly than irritated that he kept asking about it. Actually, curious would be too light of a terminology, what would be the correct term is: suspicious. However, she was naturally a suspicious person, so did that make her paranoid? Raven shook her head, over analyzing a situation could get people into trouble, so instead she took it as merely a bored nobody looking for some form of entertainment. Since she was the only other able-body in the room she was unfortunately unanimously selected for questioning, she stopped her eyebrow from twitching in agitation and answered with a heavy sigh, "It's an heirloom from the royal family of Azarath, presented to me as a gift before I was sent off to Earth."
"Oh, so it has personal value to it, okay, that's all I wanted to know, no harm done."
Somehow, him not inquiring about her possibly being from another dimension made her even more chary of his intentions. She remained vigilant, even when she heard his clothing shuffle, it sounded like he slipped down the wall to lay on the ground. He sighed and she sensed a wave of contentment waft from his being when not too long ago he was agitated and antsy. On that note, she also felt he had finally come to grips with reality: he was trapped in a box with a Titan and nothing to do, oh well. The casual offhanded acceptance of this fact caught her off guard … was he really that adaptable?
He grunted, Raven suspected he was stretching when she heard something pop and crack, before he sighed again in content. With a strange distance in his voice he asked, "So how long do you think it's gonna be till they find us?"
She shrugged, "Depends on if Larry sent us somewhere out of the city, or out of the country …"
"So it doesn't bother you that we might just die here, Damsel?"
She gritted her teeth, "My name is Raven, use it."
He didn't say anything, he didn't have to, Raven already knew he completely disregarded her threat, and a threat it was. She closed her eyes to calm herself down, but furrowed her brows when Red X sans the digital voice-over asked, "If we do bite the dust, got any regrets?"
Regrets? Raven asked herself in her head, before she sneered condescendingly and rolled her eyes, "You're a disappointment."
That drew his full attention, "I'm a what?"
"The great Red X who can fool the world asks about regrets in his last moments with a Titan. I suppose you're going to ask if you can be forgiven, and if there is a Heaven, and you're going to expect me to see passed the conniving scum you are to the tormented soul deep within you. Redemption is a myth; you can't redeem who you are, for what you do defines you."
A long silent pregnant pause hovered in the room. The roll-chair had scooted closer to get a better grasp of what was going on, the shattered screen lifted the corner of its head up to listen closely to the thief's response. The air itself paused in its circulation to wait for a reaction. They weren't disappointed that Raven was proven wrong, "Get off your high horse, princess, I may have my moments, but what makes you think imma spill my guts to you, and it was just a frickin' question, I didn't ask for a life lesson." He suddenly huffed and with the shuffling of clothing Raven suspected he sat up, the surrounding pitch was a clue to his placement, "Never mind, look, I'm not trying to get into an argument alright, just trying to pass the time. So excuse me for touching a nerve."
She leaned against the desk and frowned, O-kay … so maybe I was a little fast on the draw there … she stood up and decided to walk around, sitting down was cutting off the circulation to her legs so she casually began to pace the room. The screen that looked up threw itself back on the ground, the roll-chair slid back into its corner and the air became breathable again as she slowly walked around the desk, around the room, letting her fingers graze the newspaper covered walls. She pulled down the hood of her cape and pulled her hair to rest over her right shoulder as she let her powers course through the box in search of a weak spot.
Maybe, if she actually tried, she could get them both out of here for she feared if she stayed in here any longer someone's head was going to explode and she didn't want to get any on her. She had just about come full circle when her senses stopped her in place because of the brick-wall that had suddenly appeared in front of her. It was, of course, Red X, but the silence in which he had traveled caught her off guard, she really didn't hear a thing! Maybe it was the suit that enhanced that ability of his, she didn't really know, whatever it was, she didn't like it, so she backed away from him with one step for distance and space before she asked, "What do you want now? More questions?"
"Just one." She rolled her eyes and crossed her arms again in exasperation, "What if we really never, ever get out of here … doesn't that scare you? A little?"
"Why? Does Death scare you?"
"Answer my question first then I'll answer yours." She didn't have to see the grin to know it was on his face, she could feel its heated stare, the whisper of his voice felt so intimate in the silent room that she enclosed her cape around her body to act as a futile shield against his charm. She didn't have a good streak with charming men, particularly if they're smart, witty, and capable of shutting her up with the right retort. Not an insult, but an intellectual argument she couldn't fault, Red X had yet to prove his intellect and she'd be damned to let his charisma get the better of her.
However, she looked off to the side and then leaned her back on the wall to ponder his question for a moment: scared of Death … was that his question? Was that what he meant? Or did he want to know if she was scared of the aspect of never finding a way out? Of never being able to live in the outside world again? She bowed her head and shrugged, "No, it doesn't …"
She narrowed her eyes, "Oh-no, answer my question first, then I'll answer yours. Remember?"
He chuckled and he too leaned his back against the wall, "I dunno … I'd like to think no, but sometimes it's a definite yes …"
"Ah-ah, your turn."
She huffed and tried not to growl in irritation at this back-and-forth game, "I'm not scared of being trapped in here, because I know my friends will find us … Robin isn't called the Boy-Wonder for nothing, and if all else fails I'll find my own way out."
"I like that answer, I like it a lot actually," he clapped for her, she fought the urge to rip his head off, "the finding your own way out part anyway, everything else is static to me. Anyway, let's see … the only reason why I say I'm not scared of Death is because it's everywhere and it's a fact of life, and …" he chuckled again, "I always seem to be defying it one way or the other … but on the other hand, for the same reason I'm not scared of it, is the same reason why I'm terrified of it. One day I'm going to pull the wrong heist, then its curtains for me." He turned to face her, "That satisfying enough of an answer for you?"
"Sufficient, but you must remember that I could really careless."
"Aww, come on, we're trapped in a room together in total darkness, can't you like imagine for once that I'm not the enemy?"
"I'm not one for imaginings."
He snorted, "I hear you're not one for a lot of things."
She went back to concentrating on finding the weak-spot, but retraced her steps since Red X was blocking her way to the other-side of the room. While walking away she heard a resounding click in the dead of silence and something draped over the desk she suspected was not a couple of feet from her left slightly behind her. Did Red X take off his cape? She didn't bother to ask, didn't bother to care actually, if he felt it necessary to relieve himself of it that was his prerogative.
"Has it ever occurred to you that I'm actually trying to be nice here?" He suddenly announced.
Raven let go of a stubborn sarcastic scoff that begged to be released, "I don't care how nice you are, you're still going to jail."
"Yeah, but that's in the far away future, I'm talking about the here and now."
"Far away? I'm thinking more near and soon."
"You really don't like me, do you."
"It's not about like, or nice, it's a fact."
"What is?" He was coming closer to her, following her around the room as she scanned the bubble with the tips of her fingers.
Multitasking, she responded, "After we've freed ourselves from this hole we won't ever speak again, so why go through the pretense?"
"Come on, even a witch like yourself has gotta be bored with the aspect of sitting around in total darkness and complete silence."
"Actually, I rather enjoy it."
He stopped, "Okay, I should have seen that coming."
She paused near the door while the Red X leaned on the desk; she glanced in his general direction, didn't see anything in this forsaken darkness, and continued on running her fingers and her mental ability along the wall with a disappointed frown. I can't even feel any other life-forms other than X … are we still in our dimension? Her worry grew as soon as she stopped in the exact place where Red X's conversation has started and she couldn't feel any sign of an opening. Larry had really done them in … or rather done Red X in, he was the one he was aiming for; she had just gotten in the way in the middle of the battlefield. Or did she get in the way? Larry made no announcement of his arrival, she didn't know he was there, so was this fiasco really her fault?
She rubbed he forehead to quell the approaching headache that was threatening to spill over into pain where she had no aspirin to stop it in its tracks. Just her luck, Red X decided he wasn't done asking her questions either, "So, watcha doin' now."
"Trying not to sever your head from its torso and fill your cranium with liquid-acid before I dump the rest of your body in Jump City Bay," of course, if she said that aloud it would stir up another discussion of why she hated him so much, when really she didn't hate him as a person, she just hated that she had to be trapped in this room with him for NO APPARENT REASON!! With a quick intake of air she huffed and said, "Finishing up a fruitless search for a way out … looks like we really do have no choice, but to sit and wait for help."
"Or Death, whichever comes first."
"Grrhyah!" Out of stubborn rage that needed an outlet before she blew them all into oblivion she gritted her teeth, spun around and kicked the cemented wall with glowing white eyes. It took a moment, but afterwards she crumbled to the floor in pain when she realized that was a concrete wall she had just tried to Jackie Chan. She hissed and massaged her aching muscles and bones berating herself for her stupidity, "Not the smartest idea you've gotten Raven … ahh."
"You know," now he was right above her, she braced for him to overstep and accidently kick her, but instead she sensed his being crouching down to her level, his voice just inches from her face when he said, "I hear talking to yourself is the first sign of insanity."
She gulped and ignored his close proximity to continue massaging her leg, "Only when you start to answer back."
"Let me see it."
She groaned when she tried to rotate her ankle, but found the origin of her misery, she had sprained it, "See what? It's so dark I can't even count my fingers to make sure they're all intact."
"Just shut up and let me see where it hurts."
"I can take care of myself."
"Would you just stop being you for one damn second and let me help!" The forceful way he said it didn't startle her, but rather the insistence of him wanting to help made her suspicious.
For the moment, she forewent her pain and agony to ask, "Why are you trying to be nice to me?"
He signed heavily in exasperation, "I thought we went over this, we're stuck in a box and personally I'd like to make the most of it by not being completely alienated from one another. The way I see it, there might come a point in time where we might actually need one another's help, so I'd rather not wait till then to argue about it. Now gimme your damn leg and stop glaring at me."
Raven's eyes narrowed even thinner, "I'm not glaring at you."
"Your eyes are glowing, you're glaring at me."
She blinked and immediately powered down, once again grateful the darkness was there to hide her embarrassed flush as she tentatively shifted her body around to face him. She heard him alter his position as well and cringed when she felt his probing fingers touch the side of her boot in search of the throbbing limb she offered to him. Once he found her boot he slowed his ascent till he felt her flesh and she stifled a gasp by biting down on her lower lip when she felt his had was absent of the rough gray gloves she thought he was wearing. She closed her eyes and let him take off her boot and socks to closely examine the injury, using his palm he pushed against the foot and she winced a little too loud for her taste when pain shot up her leg and through her body.
He immediately released the pressure, "Well I don't think it's sprained, if you can stand on it, then by my diagnosis you'll live."
The longer he held onto her bare flesh with his bare hands the hotter her face was becoming, and it only got redder when she began to feel him massage the aching limb. It felt nice, very nice really, it really was helping her take her mind off the injury, but it was almost making her uncomfortable. She gulped and was afraid it was a little too audible for a moment before she closed her eyes and released a reluctant sigh of relief the longer she let him knead and rub her leg. She was pretty sure her ears had turned red when she heard him ask, almost in a whisper, "Feeling better?"
She leveled off the tone of her voice and licked her lips, Okay, enough is enough, remember who we're dealing with here, she cleared her throat and said, "That's great Doctor, think I can have my leg back now?"
"Sure …" he let her go, she was never more grateful to have severed a physical connection with anyone else in her entire life, but at the same time she was reluctant to have let that feeling pass. She had never been given a massage before, it really felt good. However, she still leaned forward to probe around for her boot and found it; with a quick snatch she jerked it on, but regretted the sudden motion and winced in pain.
Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow, she was pretty sure a tiny tear escaped her eye so she wiped her face to be rid of it as she tried to stand up with the help of the nearby wall, but as if Red X had read her mind he wrapped his arm around her waist and effortlessly pulled her to her feet. He was gentle about it, but as if his touch set her literally on fire she wiggled away from him and again used the wall as a crutch when she discovered the pain in her ankle needed a little more getting use to. With genuine concern, he asked, "You okay?"
She waved him off, "I'll be fine … I just … feel like an idiot."
"Tell me about it." She shot him a dark look he didn't have to see to sense, "No, I mean it, tell me about it, why do you feel like an idiot?"
"Why do you care?" She snapped in annoyance, "Getting along doesn't imply needing to care about my well being, so why does my physical state matter to you?"
"Hey, I get that you're getting frustrated, but don't go biting my head off because you pulled a stupid."
"I am not frustrated! Emotions are pointless –" the room shuddered, Raven tightly shut her eyes, sucked in several deep breaths and suppressed her inner rage, as soon as the room stopped shaking she sank to the floor with her head against it and moaned in embarrassment. Why did she have to lose control in front of him, it was shameful!
After a moment passed Red X dared to say, "Okay, this snap and go routine is not working you need to calm down or at least tell me what your problem is."
She tried, she really tried to keep the peace in the best way she thought possible, but he just wouldn't shut-up and something in here just couldn't keep it in anymore. Raven growled, "My problem is feeling so damn helpless and so damn useless! I'm not the Damsel in Distress, I don't want to sit here and wait for something to happen, if I try anything we're all doomed, but if I don't try anything we're dead anyway. It's so … pointless …"
He slid down the wall beside her, "Well, at least we finally found some common ground. Any ideas?"
"None," she sighed tiredly and slid further down the wall so she was laying down on her side glaring at the black ground, she closed her eyes, "we really are stuck here aren't we?"
"Yeah …" he said softly.
She unclipped her cape and threw it off to the side, where it landed, what the chair did with it she didn't care, it didn't matter, as far as she knew her friends weren't coming. It was all so damn pointless to care anymore about concentration, being a Titan, or being a Thief. All that mattered in pitch-black darkness and humming silences was the fact that she wasn't alone; with her eyes closed she listened to her heart beat in tune with Red X's breathing. Slow and steady, real and sure, she couldn't help to chuckle softly to herself about the absurdity of it all. Here she was trapped with the infamous Red X, trying so hard to keep a clear sense of professionalism between them and instead she ends up finding comfort in his breathing.
Truly unbelievable, and with how thick the silence was it was easy for X to hear it, "What's so funny?"
She shook her head and quickly wiped the smile from her face, suddenly afraid that he'd see the humorous glitter in her eyes despite the blackness, "It's nothing."
He slid down so he was laying with her, facing her, grinning, "Oh-no, I heard a little giggle … I wanna know what the great Raven thinks is funny."
She sneered, "Your face."
"Nice try, but I know you can't see in the dark."
"Let it go."
"… You need a reason?"
She turned her back on him, "Just leave me alone …" she kept her eyes tightly shut and sucked in a deep breath, held it in for about a few seconds before she released it all in one huff then comfortably shifted her body so she can retain some form of warmth while she drifted off in silence. Silence … Red X gave up on questioning her, how uncharacteristically nice of him to give her some space and room to breathe. She took advantage of the moment and slowly drifted into sleep; as long as she was asleep nothing bad would happen. Her powers wouldn't go haywire, and neither would she be able to sound stupid in front of Red X and his questions.
Drifting further away from reality – or some form of reality in the bubble – she murmured, "Wake me up when we die …" it was suppose to sound sarcastic, but instead it came off as far more foreboding than she'd like.
The back of her neck tingled when she felt his breath tickle it, she tensed and curled into an even tighter ball when she was sure he as hovering just inches over her person. Why? Why would he risk coming so close to her? Why would she let him? Human contact maybe? To be sure that she wasn't alone? All thoughts fluttered out the window when she felt rather than heard him whisper into her ear, "We're not gonna die, your friends will find us, you'll see."
She turned her head to berate him and playfully poke at his sudden hopefulness when instead she felt something brush against her lips and her heart dropped into her stomach when she realized it was his lips he barely touched with hers. He was directly over her, what he was doing hovering that close to her face in the beginning she would never know and what he had been trying to do prior to their current position she didn't even want to know, but he was just as surprised as she was. Locked in place, bewildered and stupefied at what had almost occurred they both stared into nothing.
Into a total blackout … the only thing keeping them apart was literally their conscience.
It wasn't right … it was wrong on many levels, but did it matter now?
She gulped, "Are we dead yet?"
"… Let me check …" Static shock shot through her body when she heard him shift and felt his free arm drop down silently on her vacant side where he effectively trapped her in place. From here, darkness and silence didn't matter for sight wasn't important; all there was, as feeling. She wasn't given time to snap herself out of her stupor and though her mental senses were telling her to move, her physical senses couldn't detect any real danger, but it was there. It was there and like taking a mallet to her gut smashed her control panel into smithereens when his lips pressed against hers and every nerve in her body erupted in flames.
Immediately her hands flew up to his shoulders and she grabbed a fist full of his suit to shove him off, but he took it the wrong way and pressed down on her suddenly. The added pressure and his increased aggression sent her mind exploding into a new world of pleasure she'd never explored before. The shock of which emitted a tiny gasp of help from her throat that sounded too much like a whimper of pleasure and so opened a new world of foreign excitement when expertly with his mouth massaged her lips open and darted his tongue into her. She shuddered and somehow shifted her body so her back was flat against the ground and her fists still holding onto his suit gripped him tighter as he probed every inch of her with zero hesitation.
In the process she tasted him, and he tasted the way fresh grinded coffee beans smelled if it were sweet and tangy. He smelled … different than the other males on her team, she couldn't describe it, like a cross between burnt metal and fresh rain, neither either or, but it was familiar somehow, like she expected it in a way that she'd never expect it to come from him. Her brain near fried itself to destruction at the lack of sense to this sheer madness.
The strength to push him off was there, she found it, but before she could shift her legs so to kick him off he suddenly pulled away and left her body tense and gasping for air, they both were actually. Seconds passed in heavy breathing, and then minutes with her eyes still a bit glazed over and her head fuzzed out and numb from a world of new experiences. She didn't know what to do, how to act, or even why it happened, not even X did when he suddenly cussed above her and then removed himself completely muttering mostly to himself, "Shit, that shouldn't have happened."
She blinked when she was left cold and alone on the floor staring up into dark space still a little puzzled, bewildered at the reason why her gut just wouldn't stop twisting. Her mind, still trying to piece itself back together, quietly asked, or at least tried to, "… Why … did you …"
He growled, he was sitting up now, still beside her, but he never felt so far away before, "I don't know … I guess it felt like a good idea at the time; just forget it ever happened … heat of the moment thing ya know."
Somewhere, some little part of her felt hurt about that comment, but it was the truth; it was a heat of the moment thing … wasn't it? Why else would he do it? She closed her eyes and suddenly found her mouth working on their own accord, "That was my first kiss …"
Her brain finally caught up with the rest of reality and she sighed heavily as she licked her lips and then slowly ran her tongue through her mouth and remembered the way he tasted and the way her entire body responded to him. It was … embarrassing, she pushed herself up into a sitting position than stood up and limped across the room in search of her cape. She found it in the mouth of the computer screen and with little remorse she yanked it away and quickly clipped it back on her person. The comfort she found in its draping length and her customized hood reassured her not everything was falling apart.
After all … the universe was still intact.
There was a sudden thud in the general direction she had left Red X sitting at, she sat on the desk to relieve the stress off her hurting ankle and glared in his direction when he scoffed, "Oh, come on, you're not mad at me now are you?"
She scowled, "About a kiss? I don't think so."
"Yeah, but it was your first …" he was on the opposite side of the desk, "Most normal people take those things kinda seriously."
"What I take seriously are the facts and the fact is I am a Ti-tan, which means any involvement with vill-ains like you are strictly prohibited …" she thought about it for a moment, then shook her head and shrugged, "You're right … heat of the moment … just forget about it."
"Oh no, you're not going to give me that crap, admit it, you're pissed off because I stole your first kiss."
"No, right now I'm irritated that you won't let it go," and it was the truth, she was over the whole kiss thing. Though her body may still be tingling from the rush of sensation, but her rational mind had retaken control … somewhat, "Besides, it's not like it was all that, it was just a kiss."
An emotion flashed so fast across her mind along with an image that she didn't have the time to catch it and examine it, but she knew it was dangerous, and the danger only grew far more dire when she sensed Red X feeling his way around the desk to her side. Somehow, it felt like she was drowning trapped in this cursed box, but she wasn't just drowning, she was drowning in a sea of sharks and her only options were die of seawater, or go out like the first course meal. With Red X now standing next to her, she sympathized with every first course meal in the world; she turned away from him when he inquired, "Now how can you say that, when it was just your first … can you compare it to someone else?"
The way he said someone else struck her somehow, but she didn't know how.
Although, she knew a danger sign when she saw one and this one was flashing bright red, "We're not going down this road."
"Too late." Somehow, his hand found their way under her cape and he grabbed her wrist, it wasn't forceful, it didn't hurt, it was only a way to make sure he had her full attention and he did. She had to fight down the desire to blast him away with dark magic, the bubble they were in, was continuously keeping her powers in check, a wrong move could blow them all to Hell. But in her case, she might already be there when she tried to jerk her wrist from him and failed. He had an impressive grip and a charming voice, "If you think you can do better, lay one on me."
She glared in the vicinity of his face, "I don't think so, once was an accident, a mistake, I won't dig my grave any deeper by playing your stupid games."
"Being trapped in this box was an accident, a mistake as well, you trying to say this is a coincidence?"
"It happens, now let me go."
"…" He released her.
She rubbed her wrist in irritation, "We're going to forget it ever happened, because you're right, it shouldn't have happened … forgetting makes life easier."
"Or harder …" he leaned on the desk beside her and in the darkness she heard him grab his cape and gloves to slip them all back on his person, "… I hate to tell ya this Damsel, but sometimes it's not the prince that saves the princess … it's the dragon."
Raven sneered, "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
A spike of frustration hit her, but he maintained his cool composure, "It means you're getting caught up in the stereotype, when the answer to your depression could be staring you in the face and you don't even know it because your too busy staring into the dark."
"I am not depressed."
"I wasn't being literal …"
She looked at him and only saw the darkness.
Darkness … the irony of it all astounded her to silence … for he had shut her up.
She couldn't find anything to say to that, it was clever, she commended him for it, but at the same time hated that he opened her eyes to a revelations she had been scared of reaching. She gulped and sighed heavily once more in preparation for a long wait … or maybe not, a tingling sensation crawled down her spine and it felt so familiar that her face beamed with a bright hopeful smile, "Robin …"
Beside her Red X arched a brow, "Huh?"
"He's nearby …"
"How do you know that?"
"I can feel him …"
"Great …" he wasn't happy about it; she could sense it and she was suddenly reminded of their previous conversation. She frowned and furrowed her brows when a moral dilemma slapped her across the face when not too long ago she had been content in the sureness of turning him in. Raven growled under her breath, This isn't fair …
"You mean she's been here the whole time?!" beast Boy huffed and puffed in absolute anger that his date had been ruined for the night because Larry's stupid finger didn't sense that his own dimensional pocket, bubble, thingie had been located in Titans Tower all along! In Raven's room no-less, the quantum physics and other scientific drabble lost to his comprehension when he had asked how a dimension could fit entirely in Raven's room.
The disproportionate funhouse-mirror image of Robin coward behind the real Robin's cape, which wasn't exactly a good idea of itself when the fearless Titan leader glared at him with a glower that could make Batman proud, so he hovered away from all the Titans with a nervous chuckle, "I'm sorry … I-I don't know what happened! When I swept through the Tower there was nothing, but then … I don't know, it was like a massive spike of energy blacked-out my senses for a split second and then the bubble relocated."
Robin frowned and pondered to himself in concern, "Must have been Raven …" he stepped up to Larry who quickly scrambled away from his intimidating appearance and his authority laced voice, "Is Red X in there with her?"
He nodded vigorously.
"Good, get them out."
"Yo-you got it boss," Larry looked around the room, the stared at Raven's bed and gulped, "Okay … here we go …" he pointed his finger, it glowed yellow and without much of a lightshow as when he made her disappear she reappeared out of thin air and fell unceremoniously on her bed with a puff of air.
She groaned and sat up, her hood having fallen off her head as she rubbed her forehead in exasperation and glared at Larry when her eyes fell on the disfigured Robin-blob, "About time, what took you so long?"
Larry chuckled, "Long story?"
She arched a suspicious brow, then looked up at Robin and the others all in her room staring at her inquisitively, she frowned, "What?"
Cyborg was kind enough to answer with a question of his own, "Where's Red X?"
Raven blinked quizzically, "Red X? I don't know, I was trapped in that hole by myself the entire five hours you left me in the dark."
Robin narrowed his gaze, "Well its night fall now, so time must have gone by slower where ever you were," he turned his gaze on Larry, "Where's Red X, Larry?"
The second-Robin frowned worriedly as he stared at his finger suspiciously, "I really don't know … I felt two people pop out of that hole … in fact, I know two people came out of there …" he looked at the stoic, but still irritated Raven as she slid off her bed and pulled her hood back over her head so she could glare at Larry without causing a heart attack. He didn't have to see her eyes to know Death had been looking him in his face; he felt someone walking over his grave and shivered.
Raven scoffed, "For all we know your power might have helped him escape, he does have the ability of teleportation, he probably must have activated it at the same time you sent me into another dimension."
Larry shook his head, "No, I don't –" he immediately shut up when he felt another person walk over his grave and decided not to push his luck so he backed away from Raven and fell in line with the other Titans in the room, "You know what, I think I've done enough superhero work for the day … uh … see ya guys!"
With that he winked out of existence and left the Titans standing still in bewildered confusion.
It was Starfire who broke the thick silence with a giggle of relief as she floated to Raven and hugged her tightly, "Oh it is so good to have you back with us friend! We shall celebrate with the Pudding of Safe Return! I shall fetch the horseradish."
For a brief moment, everyone in the room turned greener than Beast Boy and braced their stomachs for battle as Starfire floated out of the room in glee. Robin, despite his horror couldn't help to smile at the adorable obliviousness the alien princess had for human food, it was cute, in a disgusting sort of way. Beside him Beast Boy looked at the clock and squealed in delight, "Ooo! If I hurry I might just be able to keep my date with Tara! See ya guys later! Good to have you back Raven! Hold on Tara! I'm coming!"
With that he raced out of the room leaving green smoke in his wake, Cyborg only shook his head and left the room, quite aware of the fact Raven still didn't like anyone in her room, so he respected her wishes. Which left a suspicious Robin who couldn't help to remain rooted in place staring in the distance in deep thought, Raven had to physically snap her fingers in his face to wake him up, he looked up at her with a frown, "Sorry … just thinking …"
"Well do it somewhere else, I'd like to have a moment with myself, I've had a long day."
"Haven't you had five hours to yourself?"
"Sorry, that was uncalled for."
"You're forgiven, now leave," she instructed callously and Robin huffed in slight amusement.
"Glad to see you're still you," he chuckled handsomely and with a swish of his cape left the room, Raven stared at her door for a long moment of maybe a minute before she jerked her hand up over her bed and dropped Red X's concealment spell and mental levitation. Like a cat he flexed his body and landed on his hands and knees on her bed, quite gracefully actually.
She glared at his handsome smirk, "Don't ever say I never did anything for you."
He crawled off her bed and straightened out his cape, "You know this means I owe ya one …"
"Means nothing to me …" she from a clip on her belt she pulled out the hard cover of his mask and held it up for him to take. He plucked it from her fingers and she crossed her arms over her chest as she redirected her eyes away from him to the floor, "You really should get out of here before Cyborg finds out there's more than one body in the building."
She happened to glance up and notice him slip the mask on, the digitalized voice-over activated and she was comfortable again, he was finally Red X the thief and not Red X the man she spent five hours with in the dark. "It's been fun … Raven … we should do it again …"
She narrowed her eyes, "I don't think so."
He chuckled, "We'll see about that …" with that he phased out of her life and she closed her eyes content for once to believe in coincidences.
It was only an accident after all … mistakes happen, and she can be forgiven for minor evil deeds right?
No … she reminded herself as she threw herself on her bed and turned her head so she could stare at the full, bright, beautiful moon hovering over the ocean abyss and bustling city. Redemption is a myth … she remember herself saying to him, You can't redeem who you are, for what you do defines you.
So if she helped a thief escape what does that make her?
And since he kissed her, where does that leave him?
She closed her eyes and sighed heavily for the umpteenth time this day, A kiss is a kiss and nothing more.
Disclaimer: I don't own the Teen Titans, so leave me alone about it, bug DC, they own them.
A/N: Okay the point of this story is … well … it's hard to explain, I more wanted to write this in a way that showed how both characters might react to one another when trapped in a single room together. I didn't necessarily want to focus it all on a romantic point of view, but rather on a realistic level (of course I threw in the romance for fun anyway, can't help myself ^^) and what I mean by realistic is I kept them in character as much as possible. I spoke to the anti-Rae/X side of me and asked it what exactly is it that makes them so incompatible and decided what the hell I'll just make them both a real Bitch and a real Asshole to each other, but in a civilized manner.
I have NO idea if I pulled it off … to me, I feel like I'm lacking somewhere, so your reviews would be nice to read if you have a comment on it.
And as a reminder this is a ONE-SHOT meaning I won't be continuing it, sorry, but I just don't feel like it should go on, like I'll ruin it if I try to stretch it out. So, there you have it ladies and gents!!
Thanks for reading!!