YAAAYYYY! Final chapter! Yah! I'm really excited to start writing More Than Heroes which I've actually already started typing. The drabbles I promised will have to wait! Please review and such! :)
ALSO .Waffleshas given me a wonderful idea for a one-shot which I will add to my Popular series. It will take place before the Teen Titans actually formed, starting after the episode Go! I will probably add that story in after More Than Heroes. However it obviously will take place before the story Popular so I'll place it before that story add on my profile soon! I'll mention it more at the end of this chapter!
I am not entirely sure what that kiss meant. I am also not sure if Robin and I are "the couple." He has not mentioned it again, and this worries me deeply. He did tell me specifically why he kissed me after all. Perhaps it was just another Christmas tradition? He also promised that when we returned to the tower we would celebrate a real Christmas with our friends. This made my worries fly away for the time being.
Batman thanked me for my service in person. He introduced me to Batgirl who was known to me as "the Babs." She seemed much kinder in person than in Robin's memories, although she still did the messing with him. She told me that she must have seen me somewhere before because I seemed awfully familiar. I gave a sheepish smile in response and told her that perhaps we did, one could not be entirely sure.
However, out of all the people I would miss I believe the person I would miss most of all would be Alfred. He had been most kind during my entire stay, and I wish I could have returned the favor. He bid me farewell with that same kind smile he had upon his face the first day we met. He squeezed my hand in good-bye and returned the wave I gave him as we drove off.
On our ride home Robin explained to me that I should not call him by his real name, or mention that I had had the pleasure of seeing his eyes once we had returned to the tower. Of course I expected this, and I gave him my word.
We contacted the others on Robin's R-Cycle's monitor. They informed us that Kole and Gnarrk had returned to the north, but they had wished us the happy holidays. Robin told them nothing of our mission, except that Slade had returned. They knew not to question him further. We all knew how Robin got when it came to Slade.
The ride home was silent, as I had expected it to be. It seemed as if I had gotten better with expecting things. It was almost as if this experience was worth it….I am kidding. Perhaps I have turned like Batman in a way. Sarcastic, distant, mysterious….
But in the end, it really was worth it. Even if Slade had escaped the money he had stolen was returned safely. I seemed more joyous about it then Robin did. He was just happy that I unharmed. I guess in a way I could not blame him. If it had been me, I would prefer him safe than for all the Earth money in the world.
For some reason, I felt melancholy. And I believe it is for another reason other than being attacked. I felt as if this journey to Gotham had changed me, and I am not entirely sure if it is for the better or not.
I do not wish to change, not one bit. But perhaps everyone changes, people grow, they develop new feelings, they think differently than they once did. My fingers kneaded into Robin's back softly. I was truly frightened to what it would be like, returning to normal. It had only been a week ago since I had had my first "silence" nightmare, which had in fact, come true. Maybe I did have the ability to see such things. I had Raven to thank for that.
"Are you okay, Star?" Robin asked after several hours of silence.
"Mm-hmm," I answered, my fingers tracing circles on his back. I suppressed a smirk as he visibly shuddered.
"Okay…" he said sounding quite distracted. "You just…seemed quiet is all."
I sighed. "Yes, I suppose…I just do not like change."
"You can say that again."
I opened my mouth to repeat what I had said when I realized what he meant. He chuckled, noticing my pause, and I slapped his back lightly. See, we could still be normal. Everything did not have to change…not yet.
Then why did everything feel so different?
Robin cleared his throat. "Um…Starfire?"
"Yes, Robin?" I asked, my curiosity peaked.
"I…uh…just wanted to say…thanks…for the flowers."
I beamed. "Oh, I hoped you had seen them. They are called Winter Jasmine, and they bloom in the winter. That is why they had survived." I paused, suppressing a sigh. "I am truly sorry…for…well,"
"I know," he sighed. "It's not your fault. I just need my space sometimes, but…in a way, I'm glad you did what you did. It's good to be close to someone…to have someone understand what you've been through…so you know you're not alone. Does that make any sense?"
"Of course it does," I responded, leaning my head against him. "Someday, when we have the time, I shall tell you about my past."
"That would be...nice."
I did not answer, but in a way I did, by smiling into his back. Our dream bond was broken. I was sure of it. Do not ask me how. I am sure I will never understand. But then again, there are things in this world that will never be understood. That is the beauty of Earth.
I paused at the door to the tower. We were in the garage. Our friends did not know we had arrived. I had the squiggles and the squirms in my stomachs. I was completely, and utterly nervous.
"I am scared," I admitted.
He placed a hand on my shoulder, comforting me. It did somehow, to some extent. "Me too."
I smiled, just a little. Taking a deep breath I opened the door. We walked to the ops room in silence, staring at the ground. Robin pressed the button to the sliding doors and we entered.
Raven was pouring herself a mug of her favorite herbal tea when she saw us enter. A small smile crossed her face, and then faded when she saw the bruise under my eye. Beast Boy and Cyborg were preforming the arts of gaming when Raven used her powers to snap their controllers.
"Hey, Raven, whatcha do that fo-" Beast Boy started and then gaped at us. "You guys are back!" he shouted, sprinting over and giving us a group hug. I winced, but I giggled, patting him on the head.
"It is good to see you friend," I said, smiling down at him.
"Wow, Star," Cyborg spoke, coming over to greet us. "Looks like you did some heavy duty fighting!"
I felt Robin stiffen beside me, but I replied easily, a grin plastered on my face. "Indeed, there were times where I wished for your assistance. The computers and technology I faced were most confusing!"
"Oh, oh, can you tell us where you went now? PLEASE? Okay…maybe I was wrong about the honeymoon, cuz how'd you get those bruises then?!" Beast Boy reasoned, still thinking about us eloping.
"Well, I can think of a few ways," Cyborg snickered, waggling his eyebrow. Robin turned a bright red, and I almost felt the heat radiating off of him.
"Ewww!" Beast Boy complained. Raven walked over and smacked him, looking at me sympathetically.
"So…is everything okay?" she asked cautiously.
I nodded, although I am sure she was not entirely convinced. "Yes, everything is wonderful. I am just feeling the down since we have missed the celebration of Christmas."
"We should probably start celebrating then," Robin interjected. I glanced at him smiling, and he returned the gesture. His tone was not false, but I could tell he was desperately trying to lighten the mood.
"WELL ALL RIGHT!" Cyborg cheered, bringing out already made mugs of the hot cocoa. He handed them around and the celebration commenced.
It was extremely joyful. Even Raven and Robin seemed to enjoy themselves. We rehung the ornaments upon the Christmas tree, laughing when Beast Boy almost knocked the whole thing over. We watched Christmas films involving the strange puppets, and I clapped my hands as the magical snowman came on screen once more. We talked about the snow we had seen in our "secret place" and how it had felt on our skin. It was a shame there was no snow to frolic in here, but that did not seem to put a damper on our festivities.
I found it extremely amusing when Cyborg dressed up as the old Saint Nick and delivered presents to us all. I happily gave the presents I had bought in Gotham to my friends, which they enjoyed immensely.
Of course, Beast Boy had to comment on the ring Robin had given me. That did not help the whole eloping idea. Robin lamely protested that it was a ring of friendship, but I was beginning to wonder how serious he was about the whole topic. He did not seem to be bothered by the teasing as much as he usually did because he did not protest as much. This pleased me greatly in a way that I could not describe.
Personally, my favorite part of the day was when Beast Boy dragged Raven under the mistletoe and kissed her on the cheek. She slapped him, of course, but she could not hide her blush.
When the festivities died down, I made a point to yawn frequently, explaining I had had a tiring couple of days. Not that that was not true, it is just I needed the alone time. Cyborg and Beast Boy "bought" it immediately, too caught up in the Christmas spirit to notice my quiet demeanor. Raven gave me a strange look, but she did not question my attitude. I was sure she knew what I had been feeling. After all, she out of anyone appreciates the time alone. Robin stared at me, even as I exited the room. For a brief moment I was afraid that he would follow me, but he did not.
I flew away from Titans' Tower, towards the stretch of pine trees, away from the city. When I needed to be alone, I had a special place to visit, a place the rest of my friends knew nothing about. I had not been to this place, or even thought of it for quite some time. I did not have a name for it, but it continues to be the most beautiful place I have ever seen.
I dove into the familiar spot where the trees cleared slightly, and a river flowed. A rather large waterfall poured from a cluster of rocks above, casting beautiful colors, especially in the rays of the sunset. A magnificent cliff of rock lay behind the topplings waters, forming an overhang.
I had found this place because of my allergy to metallic chromium which had been a key component in a mineral below the ground. It had taken form in a rare earth mineral known as Fluorite, which was an extravagant pink-red color. Truth be told it was not that rare, except it normally does not contain metallic chromium. I believed the sample I had found had been tampered with a long time ago, perhaps by the Psions who loved to experiment, or even Tamaranians themselves. Whatever the cause, these gems contained the same components as the one Blackfire had used as the Jewel of Charta. Very powerful, that is why I had not told anyone.
However there was an error in my thinking. Why had I not been allergic to the Jewel of Charta if it had truly been tampered with? There must have been another component I was missing. Had I conquered my allergy from when I had undergone Transformation? Then why had I been able to locate this fluorite in the first place? I will admit that this form of metallic chromium did not cause me to sneeze as frequently. Mostly it just made my nose tingle, which was still irritating enough to seize my attention.
When I had first come upon this magnificent cluster of gems I was merely swimming in the rivers' warm waters. That was another thing that was odd about this place. It had something to do with the Fluorite most likely, but for some reason, the water here was always warm. I suppose this made sense. Jewels of Charta had many different uses.
What had been a surprise was Slade's amulet when I came upon it. I could not be sure, but I was fairly certain it had been made of Fluorite. It certainly would have given him the power to escape from Robin and the Batman. But how could he possibly obtain such a mineral? He would have needed assistance, but Blackfire was still in prison, and I would have known if another Tamaranian had come to Earth. The only other species that could have aided Slade in locating these gems are the Psions, or perhaps the Gordanians. I dismissed these thoughts. He surely did not have any, it was impossible.
I contemplated going for a quick dip, just to see the magnificent shades of the precious gem I had grown accustomed to over these past few weeks, but I decided against it. It was far below the surface of the water, and I did not believe I had the energy for such actions at the moment.
So instead of swimming I sat by the water's edge, a calming smile etched on my face, when a sudden thought came to mind. I flew to the waterfall, right next to the place where rock could visibly be seen. With my starbolts, I burned in the names John and Mary Grayson.
Oh, what did people refer to this as? A memorial, that is right. I had made a memorial to remember Robin's parents. Friends did that for one another right? I am not really sure what Robin and I are anymore, but I suppose at the moment it did not matter.
I had never considered bringing anyone to this place before. It was my special sanctuary, a place that I only knew about, that truly belonged to me. After all, who else on Earth could locate it by a mere itching of the nose?
Yes, I suppose I would have to show this place to Robin. Maybe that is when I could tell him of my past. Truthfully, I am dreading that day because I do not wish to remember such tragic memories. However what has happened has happened, and there is nothing I can do to change that. Yes, I would have to remember, and I would have to share, but that is the next step if I truly am to heal. I had to let him into my mind, because he failed to let me into his willingly. In a way I could make up for that.
End of Part II
Keep an eye out for More Than Heroes, my drabbles, and my one-shot inspired by .Waffles which is called: To Kill a Robin. Please Review!