a.n. HIYA! God I can't believe how quickly I wrote this one! I'm not sure if I'm gonna keep it as a oneshot, it has potential to be longer I think, let me know in your reviews!
Disclaimer: They own it, I do not, how very very sad.
Beast boy had always thought Raven was tough. Nothing bothered her, no one got close to her. She couldn't be hurt. But seeing her now he knew it was a lie.
The incident with Malchior had been a few weeks ago, and while she claimed she was fine now he knew different. The empath went about her usual tasks, but it was with robotic motions and an air of weariness about her. Even now, as he saw her watch the sun crawl towards the horizon, it seemed as though she were only doing it out of a sense of routine.
She hadn't cried. It took a lot to make Raven cry, and even if she did she certainly wouldn't let the others see it. But this zombie state, this shadow of her was even worse. At least when you cried it was the beginnings of letting yourself heal, letting out your grief. Beast boy knew from experience that bottling it up didn't help one bit. The others hadn't noticed which frankly amazed Beast boy; it was so obvious to him.
The changeling had tried to talk to her, but was met with his usual reception. The only exception was when he changed into the Beast. She talked to him then, but that had been two days ago and she'd barely looked him in the eye since. He wasn't sure if she was locking him out because she didn't want to talk to him or whether it was because she was embarrassed about hugging him. He smiled a little at the memory. She smelt of incense and tea and old parchment. An intoxicating mixture.
Beast boy loved Raven. He really did, but it had taken him a while to realize. At first he had assumed it was nervousness at meeting someone so new and different, but as time went on and he became more used to her that excuse started to run thin. For a little while he tried to convince himself that he hated her, but after a horribly graphic dream in which Raven died and he woke screaming blue murder, he left that excuse too. There was only one more explanation for how he felt, and it seemed… right.
And he had noticed something. Raven put up walls all around her to keep people getting close to her. He had thought that was what made her so strong. But people didn't put walls up around something that didn't need protecting. You didn't guard something indestructible. Things that were fragile and breakable, they were what needed shielding. And Raven had realized her own delicacy and done all she could to hide it from the world. But no matter how strong you build your walls someone will get in one day.
Beast boy was just sad it hadn't been him. And anyway, if it had been him he wouldn't have smashed her heart into a million tiny pieces. He wouldn't have set fire to her vulnerability and toasted marshmallows over it like that stupid dragon. Ooh, what he wouldn't give for five minutes alone with that book…
He knew Raven hadn't destroyed it. This caused him great unease; did it mean she was going to bring him back? That she still cared about him? Most importantly, could he still talk? She had been avoiding her room which given her state, was decidedly odd. She usually spent as much time in there as she could, but now she was avoiding the others but only going into her room to sleep. Seeing her so upset, he decided to check for himself.
Beast boy's unease grew as he approached the empath's room. The last time he had entered through this door he had been sucked through a mirror into Raven's mind. That wasn't so bad though, Happy Raven liked my jokes. He thought. And Timid Raven was kinda cute.
He shunted the thoughts from his mind as he entered as a flea under a microscopic crack in the door. There was a noise. A dull 'THUMP' followed by incomprehensible mumbling. He transformed back into human form and looked around. There was a chest in the corner, shaking as if there were a small animal inside struggling to get out. Then the voice started again.
"Oh, Raven I am sorry; I should have told you the dragon was trapped inside here as well. If you free me I will be human again and we can defeat the monster together. Please…"
Beast boy felt a wave of anger hit him. Not only did Raven have to deal with betrayal, now the creature that had betrayed her was yammering on day and night with lies even he could see through. No wonder she was avoiding her room.
The anger was starting to grow into something more. He recognized it, and it was bad. No no no, you can't help, I had an antidote, STAY DOWN! But his protestations were lost, and in a few seconds the Beast stood fully transformed in Raven's room.
Malchior continued trying to implore someone that may or may not have been there, oblivious to the giant animal that could rip his book to shreds. And at the moment the giant animal thought that was a pretty good idea.
The Beast backed up for a large pounce, the rage and anticipation for the kill building up inside it. Beast boy was trying to get control back but it was almost half-hearted. He wanted Malchior to pay as well.
The Beast leapt through the air to destroy the tome, the thing that had caused Raven such pain, but when he leapt there was a quiet gasp and he was restrained by a large black claw in midair.
"Beast boy stop." Raven.
The Beast growled and thrashed in the restraint but could not escape. Raven made her command telepathic, Beast boy stop now!
The reply shocked her. Beast boy not here, it growled in a deep mental voice nothing like that of the boy she knew, only me now.
Raven stood thunderstruck for a moment before she realized the Beast had stopped struggling. She released it and it stood before her with a deep rumble in its chest, though whether it was a purr or a growl was difficult to discern. He was looking at her with an almost puzzled look on his face. Dragon hurt Raven. He finally said, still telepathically. She guessed that he couldn't speak in this form.
"Yes." The by now familiar ache in her chest struck again.
The Beast snarled hatefully. Dragon must pay.
"No!" She cried moving between him and the chest.
He snarled again. Why? You want him here?
Raven shook her head, "No."
The empath sighed. "You won't understand. Can you bring Beast boy back? He would."
Boy is weak. I am strong.
She snorted derisively, "Beast boy is ten times stronger than you."
The Beast roared in outrage. Boy is puny and weak! Beast is superior!
"Never. Beast boy can keep you suppressed ninety nine percent of the time. You only get out because of those chemicals. He can fight for his life and win without you."
Boy hurt you.
Raven winced as she remembered him calling her creepy, "And he can make me feel better."
The Beast whimpered and bowed his head. Raven wants boy?
Without a word the Beast began to morph until Beast boy stood in his place and sank to his knees, puffing as though he'd run a race. "T-thanks." He managed to get out before devoting his energy to regaining his breath.
Raven waited until he had caught his breath before asking, "Beast boy why did you come in here?"
"Uuh," He was stuck for a second. "How do you know it wasn't the Beast?"
Raven raised her eyebrows and turned, looking between him and the door. "The Beast can't get into my room without wrecking the door."
"Oh. Right." He fiddled with his hands, looking anywhere but the girl sitting next to him. "I just want you to be okay." He mumbled almost shamefacedly.
"Don't even try Raven."
She sighed, "Okay, I'm not. But there's nothing you can do about it." She glanced at the wooden crate which had fallen silent.
A deep growl emanated from him and he held back the Beast again, but before he had completely suppressed it, it telepathically broadcasted, 'Wanna bet?'
The girl almost smiled. "Yeah. Destroying the book wouldn't help one bit."
"Why not?" He so wanted to.
"The book isn't Malchior, the book's his prison. If you destroyed the book he'd be free because I'm not quite as good at spellcasting as Rorek."
After a half second of contemplation he gave her a quick hug. "You're the best magician I know."
Raven rolled her eyes and smiled a little, "I'm the only magician you know."
Beast boy brightened noticing she was cheering up. For Raven anyway. "Nu uh! I know Mumbo!"
She gave him a disapproving stare.
"Hey, he turned you into a rabbit!"
The stare turned into a glare. "He turned you into a lamp."
Beast boy grinned, "Yeah, but there's nothing adorable about a lamp."
They were interrupted by a petulant 'thump!' from the chest followed by Malchior's voice. "You stupid girl, you think he'll ever understand you?"
Beast boy felt the fury rising inside him again but Raven's hand on his arm calmed him down. "Let's go."
"No." He eyed the trunk with an evil glint in his eye, "I have a better idea."
The empath flew over the sea following a green pterodactyl carrying a trunk in its talons. "Could you at least tell me where we're going?" She called over the roar of the wind.
Beast boy heard her and screeched to demonstrate. Raven rolled her eyes but took his point.
Within about five minutes Beast boy landed on a small island, though 'island' might have been a bit of an exaggeration. It was more of a sand bank which was only five meters square. And it was low tide. He put down the crate and Raven landed lightly beside him, looking at him questioningly.
Beast boy grinned and changed into a dog, beginning to dig the deepest hole he could. Raven realized what he had in mind and used her powers to lift the sand until they struck water. Beast boy transformed back and frowned at the quite shallow hole. "Now what?" It wasn't anywhere near deep enough for their purposes.
Raven sat cross-legged in midair, "I can get something… Azarath Metrion Zinthos." On the third word a large rock flew out of the water surrounded with black aura. It soared gently towards them and Raven drew a small ball of string from inside her cloak, tying one end to Malchior's trunk and the other to the rock.
Beast boy nodded and turned into a dog again, digging quickly and when the water became too deep he changed to a seal, using his flippers to clear sand amazingly effectively. After a relatively short amount of time the two teens were close to breaching the Earth's crust and Raven said, "I think that's deep enough."
Beast boy changed back and together they heaved the chest into the chasm they had created. Beast boy kicked the stone after it and after a satisfying silence there was an almost imperceptible thump as it hit the bottom of the hole.
Raven smiled and the two shared a rare moment of friendship, of complete understanding.
"You think he'll ever get out of there?" Asked Beast boy.
Raven peered down the hole, "Maybe. But we haven't filled it in yet."
Beast boy grinned. She was almost back to normal. "And even if he does get out he's gotta find someone as awesome as you to get out of the book anyway."
The girl blushed slightly at the compliment, "Thanks."
They yawned simultaneously and grinned at their accidental synchronicity. "Home?" Asked Beast boy.
Raven thought for a second and waved her arms, causing a half tone of sand to fill the fissure which held the dragon. "Home." She paused a second. "And Beast boy?"
She quickly kissed him on the cheek. "Thanks."
She flew off in the direction of the tower. With any luck he wouldn't see how much she was blushing.
Beast boy stared dopily after her. "Dude."
a.n. Hope you liked it! Again, let me know in your reviews (hint hint)