Le gasp! What is this, another update all ready?
Uhm, yes, actually, it is. I guess I was feeling inspired after finishing Brother, so I managed to knock this one out fairly quickly. Also, if you haven't read Brother, do so now, as the intro to this episode is filled with spoilers for Brother; appropriate, considering this happens the day after Brother. But I digress. Read for yourselves, and don't say I didn't warn you. Because I did.
Disclaimer: You've read Brother, right? Nothing has changed since then.
Robin walked onto the roof of the Tower. Every now and then, he'd come up here to watch the sun rise over Jump City. It was a beautiful sight, but not as beautiful as a certain young woman...
Speak of the devil, thought Robin when he caught sight of someone else on the roof. He walked over to Starfire and slipped his hand through hers. She looked over at him and smiled. Robin immediately noticed that she'd been crying.
"You okay?" he asked softly.
Starfire nodded; paused, realised she wasn't fooling him, and then shook her head.
"I am...upset," she said slowly.
"About yesterday?" Robin asked, and she nodded. Yesterday had been a horrible day. Madame Rouge had been rescued from prison by Blackfire, and the shapeshifter had attempted to infiltrate the Titans as Wildfire, Starfire's missing younger brother. Rouge had been exposed, of course, and had been captured and taken back to France, courtesy of the Doom Patrol. Starfire had duelled Blackfire across Jump City, and would have killed her if Robin hadn't intervened. Even so, Blackfire was now permanently scarred from that battle: Robin had raked one of his bird-a-rangs across her cheek.
"She..." Starfire swallowed, and started again. "She betrayed me," she whispered. "The first two times, I managed to find it in myself to forgive her. But this time...she went too far."
"What do you mean by that?" asked Robin.
"Those first few times, she was only interested in removing me from power," said Starfire. "I was not interested in becoming the Grand Ruler, so I did not feel too upset. But yesterday, she wanted to hurt me."
Tears started to fall down her face as she continued. "She knew how much I loved my little brother. She used that love against me in an attempt to kill me. She knew I would accept him back, thinking my joy would blind me to what was really happening."
Robin nodded. "So you were suspicious of him as well?"
"Yes," said Starfire. "There were enough things wrong with him for me to be suspicious, but there were too many things right about him that I wasn't overly concerned. I wasn't completely certain what was going on until Madame Rouge dragged me up here."
"So you were only faking when Rouge knocked you out?" asked Robin.
Starfire nodded. "It was the first idea that came to mind," she said. "I thought it was the fastest way to find out her plan. I'm sorry if I scared you, Richard."
Robin smiled, and gave her hand a reassuring squeeze. "Its okay, Kori." He sighed, and his smile faded. "What you said at the end of your fight with Blackfire, about her not being your sister anymore; you really meant it, didn't you?"
Starfire nodded. "I officially disowned her," she whispered. "She really is no longer my sister."
"I'm sorry," said Robin. "Are you ever going to try and find out what really happened to your brother?" he asked after a pause.
Starfire shrugged. "I want to find him, but...I don't want to leave Earth. Not yet, anyway."
Robin nodded. "Well, whatever you decide, I'll stay by your side. I promise." (1)
Starfire smiled. "Thank you," she whispered. She leaned in towards him, closing her eyes. Robin leaned forwards, and their lips were just about to meet when something slammed into them, knocking them apart. Robin rolled with the momentum, coming up in a combat stance with an explosive disc in hand. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Starfire get up, eyes glowing green. In front of him, a young man was standing on a floating chunk of rock. The man was standing with his back to the sun, his face obscured by shadow. He raised his hands, which were surrounded by a yellow glow, and two pieces of the rock he was standing on rose up and sharpened themselves into sharp points, aimed at Robin and Starfire.
"Where is my sister?"
When there's trouble, you know who to call. TEEN TITANS!
From their tower they can see it all. TEEN TITANS!
When there's evil on the attack,
You can rest knowing they've got your back,
'Cause when the world needs heroes on patrol,
Teen Titans, GO!
With their superpowers they unite. TEEN TITANS!
Never met a villain that they liked. TEEN TITANS!
They've got the bad guys on the run,
They never stop till the job gets done,
'Cause when the world is losing all control,
Teen Titans, GO!
One, two, three, four, GO! Teen Titans!
The sharp piece of rock flew at Robin, and Robin threw his explosive disc at the rock, shattering it. Starfire blasted the rock headed towards her with a starbolt, then fired a second one at the intruder. The starbolt struck him in the chest, causing him to lose concentration. He fell of the rock he was standing on, and the rock itself started to plummet. Thinking quickly, Robin pulled out his grappling gun and fired it at the attacker. The line wrapped itself around him, bringing him to a sudden stop. The jerk as the line went taut almost pulled the gun out of Robin's hand. He staggered forward, and Starfire caught him.
"You realize this will not hold him forever, don't you?" asked Starfire.
"I know," said Robin. "This is just a temporary measure."
Together, they pulled up their captive. To Robin's experienced eye, he looked to be about nineteen to twenty years old. He had blue eyes and copper coloured hair. He was wearing khaki cargo pants, held up by a dark yellow belt, a pair of combat boots, brown gloves, an orange-yellow shirt with the letters 'GF' emblazoned on it and a brown mask. He started to struggle once he was pulled up to the roof, but stopped when Starfire formed a starbolt around her hand and held it close to his face.
"Who are you?" asked Robin, arms crossed in front of him.
"The name's Geo-Force," said their captive aggressively. "What about it?"
"What are you doing here?"
"I told you, I'm looking for my sister," said Geo-Force. "And you Titans were the last people to see her."
"And who is your sister?" Robin asked, fairly certain he already knew the answer.
"Terra," he said. Robin felt his guts twist at that name, and Starfire gasped in shock.
"I had a feeling you'd say that," said the Teen Wonder quietly. He reached into his belt and pulled out one of his bird-a-rangs, and used it to slice open the line holding Geo-Force hostage.
"You know, if you wanted to talk to us, you could have just knocked on the door," said Robin.
Geo-Force shrugged. "All I know is that you guys were the last people who saw her. I didn't want to take any chances. Sorry."
Robin nodded. "I understand."
"So, what happened to her?" asked Geo-Force.
"You'd better come inside," Robin said eventually. "We've got a lot to talk about."
Beast Boy collapsed onto the couch with a groan. He felt absolutely wasted. He'd been watching over Madame Rouge until the Doom Patrol arrived, and he helped his old team take her back to France. He'd only just got back and was now recovering from the scourge of international travellers everywhere: jet-lag.
"You're back," said a voice from the kitchen. Beast Boy managed to sit upright and glanced over the back of the couch.
"Oh," he said tiredly. "Hey, Rae." He relaxed and slumped backwards onto the couch.
"Beds are for sleeping, not couches," said Raven, making a cup of herbal tea.
"Don't care right now," moaned Beast Boy. "Too tired." His ear twitched, and he opened his eyes and sat up again.
"Did you hear that?" he asked.
"Hear what?" asked Raven.
Beast Boy looked around. "Thought I heard a thud or something," he elaborated.
"Well, I sure didn't hear anything," said Cyborg as he walked in.
Beast Boy shrugged. "Must've been my imagination."
Cyborg headed over to the kitchen, and Robin and Starfire came in behind them. After them came another young man, and Beast Boy immediately felt suspicious, his sleepiness vanishing as adrenalin pumped through him.
"So who's our guest?" asked Cyborg. His hand, hidden by the counter, had transformed into a sonic cannon.
"I'm Geo-Force," replied the stranger. "I'm here looking for my sister."
Raven was staring at him intently, trying to work out why he looked somewhat familiar. "You mean...Terra?" she said.
Geo-Force nodded. "I heard you were the last people who saw her alive," he said warily. "I thought you might know something about her disappearance."
The Titans looked at each other, the same pain reflected in each of their eyes.
Geo-Force spotted the looks passing between them. "I should probably sit down, huh?"
Robin nodded. "That'd probably be a good idea."
"Wait," said Raven. "How can we be sure you are actually Terra's brother?"
"You can go into peoples' minds, can't you?" Geo-Force asked her.
"Only if you let me in," she replied. "And I'd rather not do that."
"Why not?" asked Geo-Force.
"I don't like invading on someone's privacy," she said.
"I see," said Geo-Force, in a tone that suggested he didn't. "I guess I'll just have to give a demonstration." A yellow glow surrounded his hand, and as he raised it, one of the rocks at the base of the Tower was lifted up until it was level with the main window. He clenched his fist, and the rock exploded with a yellow flash into fine dust, covering the window.
"That enough proof for you?" he asked.
"It's a start," said Robin.
"What else do you want me to do?" asked Geo-Force, sitting down on the couch. "Tell you my life story?" Judging from the looks the Titans were giving him, it seemed like that was probably a good idea. "Why are you guys so suspicious?" he asked, irritated.
"Well, after what happened yesterday—" began Beast Boy.
"Yeah, okay, I get it," interrupted Geo-Force. "I might as well tell you anyway."
"I was born in a country called Markovia," he said as the other Titans sat down. "It's a small country in Europe. Anyway, I'm actually the Prince of Markovia." This statement didn't get a major reaction from the Titans; he guessed they'd already seen that sort of thing before.
"Terra was my little sister. About three years ago, we were kidnapped by this crazy scientist; that's how we got our powers."
He shuddered at the memory. "Anyway, we escaped and made it back home. I managed to learn how to control my powers. Terra...well, she's always been somewhat...insecure, I guess. She was never sure about who she was and who she was supposed to be. I think that insecurity led to her powers going out of control. She couldn't handle the pressure, so one night she ran away."
Robin glanced at Raven. She nodded. As far as she could tell, his story was the truth.
"I haven't seen her since then," continued Geo-Force. "I've heard rumours, but that was about it. Then I heard that she had disappeared when she was in Jump City, so I managed to get over here to investigate." He looked at Robin. "I've told you everything you need to know; now it's your turn to tell me."
"Well, we first met Terra about a year and a half ago," said Robin. "She was being chased by this giant scorpion thing, and when we went to save her, she took it down herself. We offered her a place to stay for the night, and we were even thinking about adding her to the team. Then Slade attacked."
"Slade?" asked Geo-Force.
"A criminal mastermind," said Robin. "He was attacking a mine outside of town, and it looked like he was trying to steal some diamonds. During the fight, she used her powers to attack Slade, but she lost control. Beast Boy managed to calm her down, and she got back in control. When we got back, I offered her a place on the team, and said that we could help her learn how to control her powers."
Geo-Force hissed. "I'm guessing that didn't go well."
Beast Boy shook his head. "She got angry at me; she had told me that she couldn't control her powers earlier, and she thought I'd told Robin."
"I'd actually worked it out for myself," said Robin. "But she stormed off, so we didn't get to tell her that. Then Slade found her, and..." Robin trailed off.
"Slade took Terra in, and taught her how to use her powers," said Raven. "And he turned her against us. When we met her again, she gained our trust, but she was really finding out all she could about us, and giving that information to Slade. She betrayed us, and she used that information to try and kill us..."
I reached out with my powers, ripping pipes out of the wall and pointing them at Overload. The water caused the electric monster to shrink. I ripped out more pipes and sent the water crashing into Overload, bringing it down, until all that was left was the central chip.
"What is your mission?" I asked it. "Why are you—oof!" Too late, I noticed that the water in the pipes had been replaced by mud, and one of the streams crashed into me, knocking me back.
"Hello?" said Terra, clearing patches around her feet as she walked towards me. "Does the word decoy mean anything to you?" The weapon chip for Overload sparked beside her as it got out of there. "We had to find some way to coax you cowards out of hiding."
"Terra," I growled, black energy forming around my hands.
"Witch!" Terra's eyes glowed yellow and she launched herself at me, surfing on a giant wave of mud. I jumped at her, fighting with her in mid-air until I kicked her in the face, knocking her down into the mud. She resurfaced, and lifted herself up on a column of mud, tackling me and bringing us both down. Terra stood up, and lifted me out of the mud by my hood, but I smashed her across the legs, bringing her down. She sat up, and I leapt at her, holding her under the mud to drown her. The mud beneath me expanded, forming a huge bubble, which sent me flying when it burst. I hit the ground, but I levitated myself up quickly. Terra cleared the ground around her, forming a huge circle. She lifted up chunks of mud, and hardened them and threw them at me. I ripped a plate off the wall, and used it to block the chunks of rock, and then I hurled it at her. She formed a shield out of dried mud, which shattered when the plate hit it. Terra formed the broken shield into a giant fist, and hurled it at me. I sliced it in half, and used my powers to rip down the massive pylon hanging from the roof. It slammed into the ground with a huge explosion, and I couldn't see what happened to Terra. I looked around for her, and something slammed into me from above, knocking me into the ground. I resurfaced, and found Terra standing before me.
"You know, Raven," she said. "I never liked you."
"I never even wanted to know you!" I retorted. "You may have fooled the others, but I always knew you were a liar!"
"Oh, really?" she said with a smirk as she cleaned the mud off of herself with her powers, forming it into a ball. "Is that why you let me live in your house and steal all your secrets and—"
"Shut up!" I yelled, hurling a giant wave of mud at Terra. She calmly raised her hand and the wave separated around her. Three of the pipes were still streaming more mud into the building, and she aimed those streams at me. I created a shield, but the streams passed right through, knocking me back. I was lying on the ground, panting, when Terra, standing on a chunk of hardened mud, floated over to me.
"Not getting mad, are you, Rae?" taunted Terra. "Oh, better be careful: Beast Boy told me all about your temper tantrums." The ball of mud orbiting her morphed into her face, albeit one with an exaggerated expression of rage.
"Anger is pointless," I ground out. "My emotions are under control."
"Nyah, nyah, nyah, anger is pointless," whined Terra sarcastically. "And you're calling me a liar?"
I charged at her and leapt up, but a hand reached up out of the dirt and grabbed my foot. I splashed into the mud, and the earth started to harden around me, holding me in place.
"C'mon, Raven," said Terra as she walked up to me. "What stings the most? That I tricked you? That I nearly wiped out your team?" She crouched down in front of me. "That everyone liked me better than you?"
"Stop it," I growled, desperately trying to keep my anger under control.
"Or was it that, deep down, you really believed that I was your friend?"
I glared at her as anger surged through me, and my vision went red. I screamed in anger and barrelled down on her, causing massive explosions and hurling anything I could at her.
"I TRUSTED YOU! WE TRUSTED YOU! WE GAVE YOU EVERYTHING, YOU TREATED US LIKE DIRT!"
Terra backed up as fast as she could, slamming into the far wall. In desperation, she created giant hands to hold me back. More hands reached out of the mud to pull me down. I struggled against them, but they were too strong. Terra glared at me as the hands started to pull me under.
"Who's in control now?" she asked smugly. The words cleared the angry fog that clouded my brain, and I realised my mistake. I had lost control. I gasped, taking one last breath before the hands pulled me under. Instead of struggling and wasting oxygen, I relaxed, letting the hands pull me down, repeating my mantra over and over in my head to calm down.
Azarath, Metrion, Zinthos...Azarath, Metrion, Zinthos...Azarath, Metrion Zinthos...
When I felt my foot touch the bottom, I created a dome around me and pushed it outwards, forcing the mud back. I gasped for air, collapsing onto my hands and knees. I couldn't sense Terra above me, and I had no idea where she had gone. The only clue I had was what she had said earlier.
If Overload was a decoy, then this was just a trap, which meant Plasmus and Cinderblock...
"Azarath...Metrion...Zinthos!" I yelled, and a giant black bird formed around me, teleporting me out of the mud.
I grabbed Robin's hand, and swung him around. He lashed out with his foot, striking Cinderblock in the face. The giant rock-like creature was knocked backwards, and when it hit the ground it was unconscious.
"Victory at last!" I said in relief as I landed next to Robin.
"Now we can concentrate on saving Terra," said Robin, slamming his fist into his open palm. I wasn't listening. I spotted something in the distance, and gasped when I realized it was a giant boulder headed straight for him. I grabbed his shoulders and tossed him aside, grunting in pain as the boulder hit me. As the world went dark, I was dimly aware of a falling sensation, and I heard a blood-chilling scream.
Plasmus was on its knees, gasping. I had morphed a tiger, and Cyborg levelled his sonic cannon at the sludge monster. The ground shook, and a fissure opened up beneath us. I managed to grab the side, and Cyborg fired his hand off like a grappling hook. He caught the ground, but it split underneath his hands, and he screamed as he dropped out of sight. I demorphed as I watched Cyborg fall, then looked up and gasped.
"Hope you're not expecting a good-bye kiss," said Terra.
"Terra, you can't..." I whispered.
"Watch me," she replied, her eyes flashing yellow.
"Terra!" I screamed as the fissure closed above me. The rock I was holding onto broke, and I fell down the fissure, banging off the sides, landing on something hard and metallic.
"Ow," moaned Cyborg. I climbed off of him.
"Heh, sorry," I replied.
"Don't sweat it," he said, taking stock of our surroundings. I looked around as well, but we needn't have bothered. The little cavern we were in was completely sealed. There was no way we could escape.
Cyborg slumped down on the ground, and I joined him.
After some time, Cyborg spoke. "I'm sorry," he said.
"Why?" I asked. "You didn't do anything."
"I'm sorry she broke your heart like that," he said. "Nobody should have to have that happen to them. Least of all you."
I smiled slightly. "Thanks." I lost that smile quickly, though.
"Wonder how much air we've got left," I said.
"Not much," said Cyborg, not even bothering to look at his sensors. "Probably only a few hours."
I remembered what Mento had told me about situations like this. After a while, the lack of oxygen and the build-up of carbon dioxide made you dizzy, and you'd eventually pass out. That was bad, because you might never wake up.
I don't know how long we sat there for, but eventually, our communicators started beeping. Cyborg and I looked at each other, and Cyborg tapped his arm, activating the inbuilt communicator.
"Robin?" asked a voice forlornly. "Starfire? Anyone, please, come in!"
My eyes went wide.
"Raven?" Cyborg asked in shock. "Is that you?"
"Cyborg! Are you okay?"
Cyborg nodded. "I'm fine, and so is Beast Boy."
"Where are you two?" Raven asked.
"We're trapped underground," said Cyborg. "Terra ambushed us and dropped us down here."
"Okay," she said. "I'll be there in a few minutes. Just hang on."
I spotted Terra leaving the chemical plant. I gunned the engine of my motorcycle, racing towards her. I got up in the air, and when I was above her, I jumped off, yanked off my helmet and tackled her. She struggled against me, but I managed to keep her trapped.
"Do. Not. Move," I growled.
"What's the matter, Robin?" asked Terra. "Feeling lonely since I exterminated all your friends?"
"They were your friends, too," I replied.
"I don't need any friends," she spat.
"What did we ever do to make you hate us so much?" I asked.
Terra narrowed her eyes. "You were born."
The ground beneath us flashed yellow and exploded, hurling us apart. I managed to come to a stop on my feet, and I watched as Terra landed across the barren field from me.
"I promised Beast Boy I'd give you one last chance," I said, "and this is it."
I charged at her, launching into a flurry of blows. She blocked the attacks, and tried to punch me. I sidestepped and grabbed her around the waist, throwing her. She flipped through the air and landed on her feet. She used her powers to throw herself forward, launching into a kick. The blow caused me to stagger backwards. She struck at me, and I blocked the blows, then grabbed her wrist and slammed her into the fence.
"Look at yourself, Terra!" I yelled as she stared at her reflection in a broken window. "Is this really what you want to be?"
She managed to break my grip and slammed me into the fence, reversing our positions.
"I'm just never going to be good enough for you, am I?" she shouted. I ran up the fence and pushed off, getting behind her as she raised herself up on a giant pillar of rock. She sent the rock pillar charging at me and I fled. I jumped and spun through the air, throwing an explosive disc at Terra as I did so. The disc struck the pillar below Terra's feet, knocking her down to the ground. The pillar collapsed, and started to fall on her, but she stopped the falling chunks above her and stood up, rubbing her sore arm.
"You don't belong with Slade," I said, trying to make her see sense.
"You don't know anything about me," Terra said as she hurled the floating debris at me. I whipped out my bo staff and smashed the chunks flying at me into gravel. I jumped and pushed off the flying chunks, and leapt at Terra, striking her with my staff. She fell to the ground, and I held my staff to her neck.
"It doesn't have to be this way, Terra!" I implored. "I was Slade's apprentice once. I got out: so can you!"
"I don't need you to save me," she said angrily.
"You can only save yourself," I said sadly as I realized that she wasn't coming back.
"I! Don't! Need! Saving!" she yelled. She brought her legs up, snapping my staff and kicked me in the chest, sending me flying.
"I'm not some sad little girl who's waiting to be rescued," she continued, walking towards me. The ground shook and fissures opened, blasting air out at me.
"I wanted to be this way. I wanted to go with Slade," said Terra as I struggled against the wind, realizing how tired I was after the fight with Cinderblock.
"I wanted to annihilate you and your pathetic friends!" she yelled, hurling a rock at me, knocking me onto my hands and knees. I was trying to get my breath back when Terra struck me again, knocking me onto my back. I groaned in pain as I watched Terra advance toward me.
"And now," she said, raising her yellow-glowing hands. "I never want to see your face again."
A massive boulder dropped down, crushing me beneath it. The weight of the rock crushed my ribs and squashed me into the ground. When she lifted it off me, I gasped.
"T-Ter-ra," I stuttered, my vision hazy.
She knelt beside me. "Looks like you failed, Boy Blunder," she said. "You failed to stop me, you failed to stop Slade, you failed your city, and you failed your friends!" She smiled evilly. "You failed Starfire," she whispered. "And now she's dead."
Tears started to collect in the corners of my mouth, and I tried to talk. All I could manage was a cough, and I felt something wet splash against my face. I realized I was coughing blood, a bad sign. Terra reached over and ripped my insignia off of my shirt.
"I hope you don't mind if I borrow this," she said, walking away. The world faded away, and as it did, so did the pain...
I grunted as Raven dropped us inside the chemical plant were Beast Boy and I had fought Plasmus.
"Yo, Raven, what was that for?" I asked, wondering why she'd stopped teleporting.
Raven opened her mouth to answer, but whatever she was going to say was lost under a shriek.
Beast Boy, Raven and I ran outside. That shriek had been Starfire's, I knew it. We spotted Starfire, kneeling beside somebody and weeping. I almost didn't recognize Robin at first; there were cuts and bruises all over his body and he looked as if someone had tried to crush him.
"Oh my god!" I muttered, trying to work out exactly how bad his injuries were. "What happened to him?"
"Terra," said Raven coldly, kneeling down next to Robin. A blue glow surrounded her hands, and she started to heal the worst of his wounds. Beast Boy and I kept watch, just in case Terra came back to make sure we were dead.
After a few minutes, Robin groaned. Starfire gasped. "Robin?" she whispered.
"Star?" he moaned, trying to sit up. Raven gently pushed him back down.
"Don't get up," she said. "You're still pretty badly hurt."
Raven continued her healing, passing her hands across his chest, down his ribcage, along his arms and over his face. The blue glow faded from her hands, and she stood up, swayed, and immediately collapsed. Beast Boy caught her.
"'m okay," Raven mumbled. "Healing...takes it out of me...'s hard work."
Starfire picked up Robin, holding him gently.
"We have to find somewhere to hide," she said.
"What about the catacombs under the Tower?" I suggested. "Slade thinks we're dead; he won't be looking for us."
Robin nodded. Raven had recovered enough to surround us with a black dome of energy and teleport us to the catacombs, but when we got there, she collapsed again. I caught her this time, and sat her down gently. Starfire had also put Robin down, and had a starbolt around her hand to light the cavern. Our gazes met, and we all came to the same conclusion.
"No more chances," I growled.
"No more trust," said Starfire sadly.
"And no more mercy," spat Raven
"She's just another criminal," Beast Boy said bitterly.
"And we're going to stop her," Robin finished. "No matter what it takes." (2)
Geo-Force had his head in his hands, and he managed to keep himself from crying. How could his sweet little sister Tara do such things...?
"What happened then?" he asked, his voice unsteady.
"Once Robin was healed, we attacked," said Beast Boy. "Slade sent in his army to fight us when we started to get the upper hand, and I left to find Terra while the others fought Slade's robots. When I found her, she was sobbing. She..." Beast Boy swallowed the lump that had risen in his throat. "She begged me to kill her."
Robin took over. "It turned out that the suit Slade had given her had integrated itself with her nervous system, and it gave him complete control of her actions."
"Terra and I fought, and I tried to convince her to stop," continued Beast Boy. "The fight ended when I was trapped, and Slade had Terra form a spear above me to drop on me."
"That's when we arrived," said Cyborg. "We had her surrounded; if she did kill Beast Boy, she wasn't going to live long enough to regret it. But, somehow, she managed to break Slade's control and attack him. She beat him, but her powers triggered a volcano powerful enough to destroy the city."
"Terra stayed behind to stop the volcano," finished Starfire. "But she was turned into stone when she did so."
A tear leaked out of the corner of his eye, and he brushed it away. "I want to see her," he said.
"You can't," said Beast Boy.
Geo-Force snapped. "I should be allowed to pay my respects to my sister—"
"You can't see her because the statue's gone!" yelled Beast Boy.
"What?" asked Geo-Force, stunned. His expression would have been funny in a less serious situation.
"When we got back from fighting the Brotherhood of Evil, Terra's statue was gone," said Beast Boy. "And I saw a school-girl who looked exactly like Terra, but she told me that she wasn't Terra."
Geo-Force was stunned. "So...who was the girl?"
Beast Boy shrugged. "I don't know," he said. "She never told me her name."
"I see," said Geo-Force. "Can I see her?"
Beast Boy nodded. "I'll take you there."
Murakami High School was one of three senior schools located in Jump City, and the only private high school in the city. That, of course, explained the uniform all the students were wearing. Even so, Geo-Force managed to spot her.
"You see her?" asked Beast Boy. He had borrowed one of Cyborg's holographic disguise rings, and the ring had radically changed his appearance. His skin was light, he had blonde hair, blue eyes, and his ears looked a lot less pointed, and he looked like he was wearing civvies. The only thing the ring hadn't changed was the small fang that tended to poke out when his mouth was shut.
Geo-Force, not wearing his gloves or mask, nodded. "Yeah," he said. "I can see her." She was off to the side, sitting in the shade with a few other girls.
"Well?" asked Beast Boy expectantly.
Geo-Force sighed. "That's my sister, all right," he said. "I'm sure of it."
"So...what are you gonna do?"
"That's the million dollar question, isn't it?" said Geo-Force. Eventually, he said, "I want to talk to her, but...she's happy here; happier than I've seen her in a long time. I don't want to ruin that for her."
"So, she is Terra?" asked Beast Boy. "You're sure?"
Geo-Force nodded. "Very."
The two were silent for a while. "You were right," said Beast Boy eventually.
"She is happy here," said Beast Boy. "And, I hate to say it, but she'd never really be welcomed back. There'd always be that lingering mistrust of her after what she did."
Geo-Force nodded. "Well, I need to leave; I could only get away from Markovia for a few days."
"Right," said Beast Boy. The teen reached into his belt and handed something to Geo-Force.
"What's this?" he asked, holding up the yellow disc.
"Titans Communicator," said Beast Boy. "If you ever need our help, give us a call."
Geo-Force smiled. "I'll keep that in mind." He held out his free hand, and Beast Boy shook it.
"So long, kiddo," said Geo-Force.
Beast Boy smiled. "See ya!" The young teen turned around and walked down the street, disappearing around a corner. A few seconds later, a green bird soared up over the skyscrapers towards Titans Tower. Geo-Force checked the communicator for a few seconds, making sure it was off. He trusted the Titans, but he didn't want them spying on him; after all, what they didn't know wouldn't hurt them...
After a little bit of creative reconnaissance, Geo-Force had found out that Te
rra was living in an apartment on Wolfram Street (3).He waited around until she arrived with a few bags of groceries. She was trying to fish the key out of her pocket, a task made difficult by the bags she was carrying.
"Need a hand there, Tara?" I asked, walking up to her.
She gasped and turned around to face me. "Brion?" she asked, stunned.
"Hey, sis," I said with a smile. "Miss me?"
She laughed and flung herself at me, grabbing me in a big hug. Brion hugged her back, his back slightly sore from the groceries hitting him. He stepped back and held Tara by the shoulders.
"God, you've grown so much," he said. "It's been what, about two years?"
"Yeah, something like that," said Tara. She whipped her head around, seeing if anyone else was around. "What are you doing here?" she hissed. "You'll ruin everything!"
Brion hushed her. "Just get us inside and lock the door," he said. "Turn the TV on so no-one can hear us talk, if you want."
Tara just raised her eyebrows. "You sure that'll work?"
Brion shrugged. "Works in the movies."
Tara just rolled her eyes and shoved the groceries at him. "Hold these," she said. He took the bags, and she unlocked the door and ushered him through. Brion dumped the supplies on the kitchen counter, and then followed her down to the sofa. He sat down on it as Tara turned on the TV.
"I see you remember me," he said, raising an eyebrow.
Tara winced. "You've talked to the Titans, haven't you?" she asked sadly.
Brion nodded. "I know you worked for Slade," he said. "I know you betrayed them, redeemed yourself, got turned to stone, then got freed somehow and turned up claiming you didn't remember being Terra."
She sat down heavily next to him, looking like she was on the verge of tears. "I guess you want to know why, huh?"
Brion nodded. "I know why you said you weren't Terra," he said. Tara looked up, confused, as Brion continued. "They'd never fully trust you again," he said. "You'd always have to live with constant reminders of what you'd done, and you wouldn't be able to handle the pressure of living up to their expectations."
Tara nodded. "You know me too well," she said, a sad smile on her face.
"What I really want to know is why you were working for Slade in the first place. Didn't you know what you were doing was wrong?"
Tara faltered. "He—he was like a father for me," she said. "He took me in, he cared for me, taught me—I owed him for that, at the very least."
Brion nodded—he understood that feeling very well.
"I did what he said, but I never expected things to go the way they did." She looked away. "I should've though; I mean, how else would they have reacted if they knew I was a spy?"
Tara sighed. "After I had betrayed the Titans, I didn't have any friends, so I fell back to the one man who was my ally."
Brion could see where this was going. "Slade?"
Tara nodded. "Things weren't so bad at first, when things were working for us, but when things started to go bad, and I started failing my missions, Slade, he...he started to beat me." That was when her tears started to fall as she remembered what he'd said in his cold calm voice.
That was nothing compared to what I'm going to do to you...
"That was when I realized he didn't care about me; I was just some pawn to him. He'd betrayed me; just like I'd betrayed the Titans. That was when I decided I'd had enough. I tried to leave but, but—"
"He used the suit he'd given to control you," finished Brion. "Robin told me that," he said when she looked at him in confusion.
She nodded. "After that, well, I guess you know what happened."
"Yeah," said Brion quietly.
"So what are you going to do now?" asked Tara.
"I'm going home," he said. "You can come with me, or you can stay here if you like."
Her eyes lit up. "Really?"
Brion nodded. "You're happy here right?" She nodded in confirmation, and he smiled. "Then that's good enough for me. Just remember to write or something, okay?"
"I will," she promised . "Oh, thanks so much, Brion," she said, hugging him again.
"You're welcome," he replied. Once she let him go, he pulled out his mask and slipped it on, and stood up. "Bye, Tara," he said.
Tara smiled. "Bye, Brion."
Geo-Force stepped out onto the streets of Jump City. He walked down to the bay, and stood on the rocks acting as a breakwater. His hands started to glow yellow, and the rock lifted up, carrying him over the city and back to Markovia.
1. Here end the spoilers for Brother. But seriously, you should have already have read that by now.
2. Those five flashbacks are all, obviously, scenes from Aftershock Part I. I added those in so I could have a chance to explain how the Titans escaped, because that was never explained, but some of them are scarily easy to justify. (For example, Starfire (the only one I didn't write because that would interrupt the flow) fell a long way into the ocean, right. She's been shown to survive in space, which means she doesn't need to breath, and she's taken hard beatings on the show. She survived the fall and washed up on the shore, where she eventually regained consciousness and went looking for the others.) Anyway, I hope I did those scenes justice!
3. Amy Wolfram was one of the writers of the show. She was the writer for Aftershock Part I and II, but those are the only episodes I'm sure she wrote.
I hope this episode explains everything Terra for you. If you're wondering how she got free in the first place, I mentioned it in Chapter One of Titans Reunited.
Anywho, next episode is Wrong Place, Wrong Time, another TTG based ep. Killowat is a Titan from another dimension, and he wants to go back home. Needless to say, things go very wrong...but if you want to find out what, you'll have to wait until the next episode. See you then.