Hey guys. I really should be studying right now, but this plot bunny attacked me out of nowhere and I just had to write this story. Anyway, as the summary says, this story is about what happened to Blackfire at the end of Brother. If you haven't read Brother, do so now, as there are spoilers for that. I hope you guys enjoy this.
Disclaimer: I don't think anyone on this site owns any of the franchises here.
Komand'r struggled uselessly. The two Gordanian soldiers had tight grips on her arms. Her hands were trapped in metal restraints that covered most of her forearms and surrounded her hands, and a transparent metal band had been placed in front of her eyes. With the restraints in place, if Komand'r tried to use her starbolts or eyebeams, she would only injure herself. The two guards dragged her deep into the Citadel, the space station that served as a home for the Gordanians. Their destination was the prison levels. Once in the prison, the guards opened a cell door and tossed Komand'r inside. She hit the ground, and the breath was forced out of her lungs. She had just managed to make it to her feet when someone slammed her against the wall. She looked at her attacker, registering the paleness of his skin, the knotted mess of his curly red hair, his youthful face, and his glowing white eyes.
"Where. Is. My. Sister?!" he growled angrily.
Komand'r gasped when she finally recognized him. "Ryand'r?"
Her younger brother grabbed the front of her shirt and pulled her back quickly before slamming her into the wall again.
"Where is Koriand'r?!" he yelled.
"Let me go," gasped Komand'r, "and I'll tell you."
Ryand'r released her, and she slid to the floor.
"Koriand'r is safe," Komand'r said. "For the moment."
"Why should I trust you?" asked Ryand'r, forming a white starbolt around his hand. "You were the one who gave the Gordanians the information that led to the death of our parents and my capture."
"I never expected Mom and Dad to be killed!" snapped Blackfire.
"We were at war!" replied Ryand'r. "What else were you expecting?"
"I-I... I..." stammered Komand'r. She swallowed the lump in her throat. "I th-thought that they'd just be captured..." Komand'r's voice trailed off. She hadn't wanted her parents to die; she'd just wanted the war to stop.
"What you thought doesn't matter now," said Ryand'r harshly. "They're dead, and it's your fault. Why did you do it?"
"I just... I wanted the war to stop!" said Komand'r. Tamaran was now a desert wasteland due to the constant Gordanian attacks, and Komand'r had made a deal with them. She had given the Gordanians information about the defences of the capital city of Tamaran, and the royal palace. In exchange, her family would be taken as hostages and she would become the new Grand Ruler of Tamaran, and the Gordanians would cease their attacks on Tamaran. Using that information, the Gordanians had launched a final assault, and Komand'r's younger siblings, Koriand'r and Ryand'r, had been captured, and her parents were killed.
"So you betrayed us? To stop the war?" asked Ryand'r.
"Yes! It was the only way I could get the Gordanians to consider a cease fire! I didn't want any more of our people to die!" said Komand'r.
"Yes, and in exchange, you got to be the Grand Ruler while I rotted in jail!" he snapped. "You didn't want to stop the war; you just wanted to become the Grand Ruler as soon as you could. That's all you really cared about, isn't it?"
"No, I-I... I didn't... I wanted... I w-was... I..." Komand'r stuttered, trying to form a coherent answer as her brother's words cut deep into her heart. His angry rebuttal of her justifications cut her deep... and as she struggled to find an answer to his question, she realised that he was right. She hadn't really cared about her people at all: she had just been a selfish, cold-hearted monster. All she wanted was the throne, and she didn't want any threats to her position. Hot tears of frustration and self-loathing poured out of her eyes as she realised just how wrong she had been, how long she had managed to fool herself, and how much she had managed to believe her own lie.
"I was wrong," she whispered, lowering her head as she sobbed. "I just wanted power. I... I lied to everyone... I lied to myself..."
Ryand'r watched in shock. His eldest sister had transformed from a confident woman into a sobbing wreck in less than five minutes. He had no idea that his words would have done this to her. Silently, he pulled the metallic band off her head, allowing the tears that had formed to flow freely. He reached behind her, and managed to rip the handcuffs off.
"I hate myself!" moaned Komand'r as her sobbing intensified. With her arms free, she grabbed her brother in a hug, crying on his shoulder.
"I'm so... I'm so sorry," she gasped out between sobs. Ryand'r closed his eyes and held his sister. Slowly, her sobbing eased, and her tears turned to sniffles. Ryand'r grasped Komand'r's shoulders and gazed into her bloodshot eyes.
"Where is Koriand'r?" he asked one more time. "I need to know."
Komand'r nodded and wiped her nose on the back of her hand. "All right," she said; her voice was rough from crying. "I'll tell you."
Komand'r explained everything that had happened to their sister since his capture. Koriand'r had managed to escape from the Gordanians, and the task force that had been transporting her to the Citadel had been defeated. The only survivor had been the task force's leader, Trogaar. He had made it back to the Citadel, and told the Gordanian Grand Vizier that Koriand'r had ended up on a planet called Earth, and was living with its inhabitants. The Grand Vizier had demoted Trogaar on the spot, and made a new deal with Komand'r; he would guarantee a cease fire if she could get them Koriand'r. Komand'r had tried three times to get Koriand'r captured. Her first scheme had involved framing Koriand'r for the theft of the Emerald of Centauri. The second had involved taking the throne of Tamaran by force, and arranging Koriand'r's marriage to the slime creature Glgrdsklechhh from the Swamp Moons of Drenthax IV. Her third and most recent plan had been to rescue a human shapeshifter named Madame Rouge, and have Rouge impersonate Ryand'r so she would be in an ideal position to capture her. All three plans had been foiled, mostly thanks to Koriand'r's human friends, the Teen Titans. After Koriand'r had defeated Komand'r's second scheme, Komand'r had been banished from Tamaran, and just hours ago, Koriand'r had disowned Komand'r.
"I was lucky to get away with my life. Anyway, after I escaped, I met up with a Gordanian ship and I was taken to the Citadel to meet with the Grand Vizier," she finished. "He was fed up with my failures, so he took me prisoner and threw me in here." Komand'r looked around the dark cell. "What can you tell me about this place?" she asked.
Ryand'r sighed. "There's not much to say. The lights are filtered to reduce the amount of ultraviolet rays we receive: there is enough to sustain us indefinitely, but not enough for us to be able to use our powers for very long. I'm not really sure of how often food and water is brought here; I've lost track of time in here."
Komand'r nodded. Thousands of years ago, a now-extinct race called the Psions had kidnapped and experimented on a male and female Tamaranean. The genetic modifications done had gifted the two Tamaraneans the ability to absorb ultraviolet rays through their skin, which could sustain them indefinitely, but it was nowhere near as effective as real food and water. The excess energy absorbed could be used to fly, or fired of as starbolts or eyebeams. From those two Tamaraneans, the Tamaranean royal family had been born. All royals had the abilities their distant ancestors had received.
"I've tried to escape several times," continued Ryand'r, "but there are too many guards. I have always been overwhelmed."
"Do you think we could ever escape?" Komand'r asked.
Ryand'r hung his head. "I doubt it," he said. "We'd need a miracle."
This story was surprisingly easy to write. Sometimes, I struggle with characterisation and nutting out someone's motivations. This time, it flowed really easily. I guess I thought about this one a lot before I wrote it.
There will be more stories explaining what happened to Blackfire in the near future (Oh, and for the confused, Komand'r is Blackfire, Koriand'r is Starfire, and Ryand'r is Wildfire). There will be at least one story involving what happened to Blackfire between Chapter Two and Chapter Ten of Titans Reunited, and maybe one or two about what happens when Starfire and Blackfire meet up again. I'll see you again when I write those.