Well, this will be my 1000th entry. You know, I always thought I'd run out of inspiration long before I got to see this point but apparently not, since here I am. It's been real and I hope it continues to be real. I own nothing.
None of them can be said to ostracize her; at least that much credit can be given. They've all known Raven for long enough that a revelation like this one isn't enough to make them turn their backs or feel betrayed. It's obvious that she was afraid of how they would react and none of them are going to oust her just because of her heritage.
However, they're all teenagers—Well, Starfire might be; Tamaranean biology is so bizarre in comparison to human biology that none of Starfire's friends are exactly sure just how old she is by human standards, but they're guessing she's close to adulthood if that time Blackfire tried to marry her off is any indication. Anyway, the point is that they're all teenagers, and teenagers talk about things like finding out their friend is the half-human daughter of an interdimensional demon.
Raven's gone up to bed and the other four members of the Teen Titans remain in the kitchen, talking it over. Well, Robin, Starfire and Beast Boy are; Cyborg is just sitting in his chair, drinking soda in contemplative silence.
No one could ever persuade Cyborg to switch to diet cola; he will drink regular Coke in all of its sugary glory for the rest of his life. Robin drinks Diet Coke because he doesn't like the buzz and Starfire and Beast Boy don't drink Coke at all. Starfire likes coffee—black, of course—and Beast Boy prefers soy milk and orange and grape soda. Raven just drinks her tea and the occasional water.
From the moment they first spoke Cyborg could tell he'd found something of a kindred spirit. He knew nothing about Raven except the way she acted and everything about her screamed "bullied as a child". More than that, her demeanor showed a lack of experience with people, isolation, a tendency to believe that everyone around her would automatically assume the worst of her. She was both painfully shy and acutely defensive. She wore the hood of her cloak the same way Cyborg wore the hood of his sweatshirt—to hide their faces.
It hadn't been hard to form a bond with her. Even when Raven was snarky, sarcastic and downright unfriendly, even when Cyborg had wanted to pick her up and shake her, they'd still had that at first tenuous bond. All the basis for this was that she, out of all of them had been the only one who hadn't done a double-take upon first seeing Cyborg's face, but it had been enough.
They'd been able to sit in silence and not say anything, and still have a conversation. Neither of them had a relationship quite like this one with any of their teammates. It wasn't like friendship, wasn't like family, wasn't like romance. Cyborg didn't really know how to describe it, except that it existed. It was just there.
She'd accepted the metal prosthetics, the explanations of "I'm part-human, part-machine" right away.
Well, now Cyborg has a pretty good idea of why Raven had accepted all this so quickly, and with the least fuss and questions of any of them.
It's painful to be half-and-half. It's painful to have feet in two worlds but to be a child of neither. All those stares, all those whispers following behind. All the parents telling their children not to point.
Cyborg knows the story. And so apparently does Raven.
There were clues to this demonic heritage. That red figure in Raven's mind, the way all Hell breaks loose whenever she's appropriately enraged, all of it were clues to the existence of something very, very nasty hiding deep down inside of her, but what was Cyborg supposed to think? He'd just assumed she was an alien like Starfire. After all, skin so pale it's practically white isn't the most normal of human traits, and though Raven didn't let it show nearly as much as the Tamaranean castaway she knew very little about Earth when the team first formed.
I just thought she was an alien like Starfire. I mean, who was to say they didn't have herbal tea and ravens on Azarath or that she'd just picked up a liking for tea here and changed her name?
But this makes more sense. Now, Cyborg understands so much more, why even despite a couple of years on Earth Raven made no effort to make friendships among the population of Jump City. He understands why she stays in the high tower, why she prefers meditation to socialization and knows that it has nothing to do with her need for emotional control.
It's like his life after the prosthetics playing out all over again.
One minute Cyborg is the sports star of his high school, the popular boy, even top of the class and teacher's pet (Because a football player doesn't have to be stupid). He has the life everyone else wants.
Then comes the car wreck.
The next minute Cyborg is without a mother and half his body is gone, to be replaced by mechanical parts. Now, his classmates shy away rather than look at him. Now, the football coach tells him he can't be on the team anymore because he has an advantage over the other players—fair, but it still stings. Now, whenever Cyborg aces a test or passes an exam with flying colors it's chalked up to his mechanical parts rather than to his own prowess.
And they stare. How they stare.
They stare and point and whisper behind their hands. Some gape, some scream, some cry "Freak" and Cyborg does the only thing he can do. He burns out, ditches and dons a sweatshirt and sweatpants. Raven must have done something similar, except it's always been this way for her.
So he doesn't join in when Robin and Starfire and Beast Boy are having their discussion, wondering how they could have missed this, wondering how she could have possibly thought they would treat her any differently with the information that she's just given them.
There's nothing to say.
He knows what it's like to have the human side of the mind warring with the inhuman side and always be terrified that it's the latter that's winning. He knows what it's like to have someone smile at you one day and not look at you the next.
He knows what it's like to be halfway.
Cyborg's opinion of Raven changes not one bit. His views on her shift not an inch.
As far as Cyborg's concerned, she is no different today than she was yesterday.
And that's enough.