"TITANS, TROUBLE!" Nightwing's voice blared over the speaker system. To Gar's enhanced senses, the voice was almost unbearably loud. Needless to say, it brought him out of his comfortable sleep. Gar sat up, rubbing his eyes. He glanced at the clock, and noticed it was three in the morning.
"Duuuuude! Don't bad guys ever sleep?" He shouted to no one in particular. Getting out of bed, he mumbled to himself, "this better be a major emergency. If Jump City Police could handle this but chose not to, then I'm going back to bed." He threw on a clean uniform and ran toward the meeting room.
On his way there, he paused by Raven's room. He stopped and listened for a moment. All he heard was a faint groaning, which he learned was Raven's equivalent of moaning in agony.
"Raven, are you ok? What's going on?" He asked concern evident in his tone.
Raven froze, sweat forming on her forehead. A mysterious pain and intense nausea had woken her an hour before Robin had called the team. She stifled the groans, cursing Beastboy's excellent hearing in her mind; she finally managed to say, in her customary monotone, "It's nothing. Just too early to be prancing around the city in a leotard."
Gar considered her words for a moment. Her tone wavered ever so slightly; those that did not know Raven as Gar did would have never guessed something was wrong. He wasn't sure what to do. He was about to speak when Raven said, "Just go, and tell the others I will be out in a bit." Gar paused just a moment longer, and then left.
When he got to the meeting room, he saw Starfire and Robin were already there, both looking equally… ruffled. Beastboy lifted a questioning eyebrow, frowning at the two of them. Nightwing remained stoic, but Starfire blushed just a tiny bit. If that wasn't a dead giveaway, Beastboy could smell their mingled sweat. He shook his head, giving out a small chuckle. The doors opened and Cyborg entered, rubbing his human eye to clear it of sleep. He looked at Nightwing, saying, "Man, it is too damn early to be out chasin' goofballs." Beastboy quickly piped in, "How did you know something was up anyway? Were you awake this whole time?" Beastboy smirked at the look on Starfire's face. Nightwing only blanched slightly. He was trickier to throw off guard than others.
Nightwing responded, "I have an alert in my room. And where's Raven?" He was staring at Beastboy, an accusatory eyebrow raised.
Beastboy frowned, and said, "She said she'll be here soon." No sooner had he finished then Raven appeared in a shroud of darkness. Nightwing nodded, and said, "Alright team, let's move out." He grabbed Starfire's hand, and they flew out the window, while Raven levitated Cyborg and followed. Beastboy waited a moment after the others, and then jumped out of the open window, turning into a large crow mid fall and soaring off.
On the way, Nightwing briefed the others on what was happening. Apparently, some large animal got loose, and was causing all sorts of havoc. The path of destruction was easy enough to follow. Beastboy was the first to spot the beast. He alerted the others, and then turned into a tiger. He ran towards the creature, preparing to engage it in battle, when it turned, lashing out with its tail. The sharp tip sliced Beastboy's shoulder, and sent him flying back. He got a good look at the monster and froze. It was no animal he had ever seen, and all his instincts were going haywire. What stood before him had a reptilian hide, large, cloven feet, a whip-like tail, scythe-like claws, an elongated snout that had large mandibles on each side of it, gleaming red eyes, and fins running down its back. The gruesome creature hissed at Beastboy, before lunging forward. It slashed with its vicious claws, but Beastboy was quicker, turning into a snake and escaping. He slithered behind it and quickly changed into a gorilla. He grabbed its tail, and began spinning quickly, before finally tossing it into a building. It wasn't even phased for a moment. It rebounded off the wall quickly, lunging for a kill strike. Before it could hit, a beam of white sound smashed into the creature, sending it rolling away. "Yo! What is that thing?" Cyborg shouted at Beastboy. Before he could answer, the monster was back up, glaring at them both with murderous rage in its eyes.
However, before it could attack, the rest of the Titans showed up. Seeing the odds were against it, the creature started backing away. It was glaring at each member, as though trying to analyze their weaknesses. When it finally saw Raven, the beast's eyes widened, and it stood up straighter. In a gravelly voice, it said, "Daughter of Trigon! It is for you that I have come to this despicable world. Come, the time of the Awakening is almost upon you. It is time to return home." The monster began walking away, but turned when she wasn't following. "Why do you not follow, child of the eighth Devil?"
Raven was initially shocked by this creature, but decided to answer it. "What are you talking about? I am not going anywhere." The monster growled, saying, "So, the talk in the Netherworld is true, you are a traitor to your brethren. I had no idea Trigon's daughter was such a brat. If you will not go willingly, I will take you!" It lunged toward Raven, its talons opened wide to grab her. She only stared in horror, unsure of what to do. Just as she was about to repulse the monster with her soul-self, Beastboy jumped up, grabbing the creature by the throat in his wolf form. He bit down hard, and tore at the monster's throat. Blue blood oozed everywhere, and Beastboy suddenly froze. He released the monster, and turned back into a human, screaming in agony. The monster stood, clutching its wounded neck. "Curious," it said. "The green one has demonic blood in him? No, it is something else… But why did he react like that to my blood? What a strange phenomenon…" It shifted its attention back to Raven. "Heed my words Halfling! Your twenty first birthday approaches! At that time, you will experience the Awakening, and all you know will be consumed. You should have followed me, but now you will pay for your defiance!" With a savage roar, the monster unleashed a crimson and black soul-self, which wrapped about the monster, sending him back to his infernal home.
"Beastboy!" Raven yelled as she hovered over to her screaming friend. She placed a hand on his head, and sent calming waves of magic through him. He gradually quieted, and then fell over in a slump.
"Beastboy, are you alright?" Nightwing asked as he walked over. Beastboy sat up, shaking his head. He swallowed a few times, trying to keep down his dinner, before finally answering. "Considering the fact that I'm nineteen now, I think I need a new codename. Beastboy worked when I was an adorable kid, but the ladies won't take me seriously if I'm called that now, will they?" He grinned up at his teammates. Cyborg looked down at him and said, "OK, what do we call you then green genes?" Gar thought a moment and finally said, "I haven't thought of that…" Cyborg laughed, Nightwing shook his head, Raven huffed, and Starfire chuckled. They all headed back to the tower. Beastboy stayed behind again, looking at a puddle of the blue demon blood. Raven was watching him. "Coming?" she asked in her usual monotone.
Gar stared a moment longer, considering the strange reaction to the blood. He would never tell his team what happened inside his mind. They would become too suspicious. "Yea, let's go home." He turned into a raven and took off, flying ahead to catch up to Nightwing and Starfire.
Raven watched her friend take off. She didn't like what the creature had told her. Another birthday that would end badly. Just what she needed. She headed back to the tower.
Once they were all back, Robin, Starfire, and Cyborg all went to get some more sleep before waking in a few hours. Raven went and got a book, and then sat down at the couch, reading. She paused when she noticed Beastboy was still in the main room, watching her. "What are you staring at?" she asked him, just the slightest hint of curiosity coloring her neutral tone. Beastboy shrugged, and said, "You don't really have good birthdays, do you?" Raven thought a moment. Since her sixteenth birthday where the prophecy of her destroying the earth came true, she's had fairly good birthdays. Sure, each year something would go wrong, but it was usually something humorous. Now that she thought about it, the humorous moments always involved Beastboy. Last year, he tried to jump out of a vegan cake he had made her, only to get shot by Starfire (he surprised her more than he surprised Raven). The year before that, Beastboy had made her a book of his best jokes (she secretly loved it, but would never tell a soul). Seeing as he literally made the book, he showed up to her party covered in glue, glitter (the herpes of the art world, in Raven's opinion), random paper, and his hair was hot glued. He had to be shaved, and Raven was only too happy to cut his hair off. And the year before that, Beastboy tried decorating by himself. They found him hanging from the ceiling by a purple streamer.
"Actually, with the exception of my sixteenth, I've enjoyed all my other birthdays." Raven informed him. He smiled, and said, "Aren't you tired?" She turned the page, saying, "No, aren't you?"
Beastboy walked over to the couch, setting down a fresh mug of herbal tea for Raven. "Naw, once I'm awake, I can't go back to sleep." He looked at the book she was reading, "Iter Itineris de Dionysus." Not understanding, he asked, "Whatcha reading?" Raven paused for a moment and looked at Beastboy. She saw the mug and said, "Is that for me?" Beastboy nodded and she said, "Thank you, taking the mug with a hint of a smile. She continued, "It's a book about a god. It means, "The journey of Dionysus, and tells the tale of the ancient god Dionysus as he traveled through Europe and Asia. It also serves as a spell book, as the magic of the god is written down in here." Beastboy smiled and said, "Cool! Wasn't Dionysus the god of wine?" Raven frowned and corrected, "Not just wine, but he represented joy and freedom. Escape from inhibitions… He was emotion." Raven left off on a sad note. Beastboy picked up. "And for someone who isn't allowed emotions, reading about them is the next best thing?" Raven gave him a half smile and said, "Almost. I can still sense emotions in others you know." Beastboy stopped smiling and said, "I do know. Hey, can I read with you?" Raven lifted an eyebrow and said, "Do you know Greek and Latin?" Beastboy rubbed the back of his head and said, "Hehe… no…" She closed her book, went to her room, and returned with another book. "This one is in English," She said, sitting back down on the couch and taking another sip of tea. Beastboy looked at the title. "Demons, Witches, and Monsters?" Raven nodded. "Perhaps I will find a clue about this whole 'Awakening' business. Even if I don't, this is an interesting read." Raven sat back, and opened the book. After a moment, she said, "Well? I thought you wanted to read?" Beastboy grinned, turned into the most adorable cat he could think of, and curled up next to Raven, his large eyes darting across the page.
"I'm not slowing down for you, so keep up." Raven said. Beastboy nodded, and resumed reading.
After a time, Beastboy's eyes grew heavy, and he curled up into a ball to sleep. Raven unconsciously began to pet his soft fur, and he let out a low, rhythmic purring. The purring and the warmth finally managed to lull Raven back to sleep as well.
A/N: Well, I have began a new attempt at an actual fanfic. So far, this is the crappiest writing I've ever done. Please, critique the crap out of this to help me improve. It annoys me, but it is necessary.
Review please, and I hope you enjoy this. I will try to update soon.