This is set in the alternate future in the Teen Titans episode "How Long Is Forever". It's basically how everything had got to that point where each Titan crumbled beneath themselves.
Disclaimer: Just try to sue me, I dare you. (Does not own Teen Titans)
Tomorrow Never Ends
It's been a year since Starfire disappeared into Warp's time machine, but every day there was a reminder that dug into the team, of who they were missing. Starfire had symbolized the innocence and naivety that the Titans tried time and time again to save every day. Now that they were without her, they lost sight of the important thing. Yes, they still went out to fight crime, but they did so half-heartedly, and yet it all blurred with every sad day spent on the half-moon sofa.
After two years of fighting each other, useless arguments, and senseless rages, the first to leave was Raven, who was closely followed by Beast Boy. Robin and Cyborg continued to work hopelessly on the attempt of recreating Warp's time machine, but after many failed attempts even he faded into the city, underneath the vigilante name of Nightwing.
Cyborg couldn't take care of the Tower by himself, and he deteriorated with it. At one point, he tried to create mechanical cleaners that'll roam the Tower and vacuum up the dirt, wash the counters even, but eventually that didn't matter anymore as time made the ceiling sag and the couch molded.
He lived in that wretched ruin of a memory till he was thirty-nine and his mechanical half fell into disrepair. Over the years, Nightwing and Beast Boy would visit, but those days have become rare, and Raven never came. He didn't remember where she had gone, but fifteen years ago he would receive mail from her and contrary to popular belief, her handwriting was scrawly, but it was elegant in its own reserved way.
Imagine her surprise when Starfire walked into the room, still looking like her sixteen year old self.
When Beast Boy left, a part of him was hoping that maybe he could create a team with Raven. It was more than obvious that he had feelings for the mysterious Empath, but when he asked her about the idea, she glared at him and left to walk her own way. Once in a while he would see her, in the first year after leaving the Titans even she tried the solo hero gig, but she quickly disappeared.
Four years later, he eventually quit the super hero role, after the big criminal, such as Mumbo Jumbo and the H.I.V.E Five, made him look a fool. Beast Boy tried college, but could never truly fit in despite his likeable personality, and he quickly dropped out. He jumped around odd jobs that were here and there, but they were always temporary.
After a year, he decided on an easy way to make money; become a circus act. Beast Boy had bought a tarnished circus cage with what money he saved from his jobs. He left a little metal bowl inside the cage, near the bars, to hold any money he may gain from passersby. Before he moved his act to the park, he decided to meet with Cyborg and tell him where he was, and to inquire about Raven.
Cyborg had kept her letters and gave the address of her apartment to Beast Boy. He never forgot the numbers, even after the letters aged and the words faded from the paper as the years ticked past. It's been five years since he last saw her, but now he can come visit her and maybe… Just maybe get to love her as she deserves.
But when he knocked, no one answered and when he looked through the windows outside the complex, her windows were tinted black. Despite this, when he visited for the third time that week, he put his ear to the door. Quiet mutterings, too softly spoken to tell what's being said, was the only sound he heard. The words he could pick out, however, were heart breaking.
"Don't look…" and, "Just another illusion…" Were the words he heard.
Robin became Nightwing when he left the Titans. True to his promise, he never stopped looking, but couldn't help Cyborg build that time machine anymore; every failure felt personal and the pain it brought became too much. Now he simply held onto a hope that Warp would come, and if he can get that disc off his chest, then he could find Star and fix this whole, sad mess.
If there was one thing Nightwing took from the Tower; it was the old photograph of the entire team, and everyone had smiled, even Raven. The color had faded from the now aged photograph and the edges were frayed from constant handling.
Of all the Titans, Nightwing missed Starfire the most. He never felt a second where he didn't regret not telling her how he felt. Back when he was Robin, he was so scared to tell her, intimidated by her openness to express thought and feeling. Sometimes he wished there was a book that would tell him how to handle this, but life trudged on, heavy from all the reluctant occupants.
Nightwing ran his thumb over Starfire's face one more time.
Raven tried her best to be a hero, but when Starfire left, it all fell apart. She missed the pointless girl talks and the contagious, fluid happiness that always encased the Tamaranian like a unique aura. It had kept her sane.
It was after the year in which she tried soloing, even after Beast Boy's offer of being a duo, when malicious whispers entered her mind. The dark influence of Trigon had come to corrupt her. She ignored the whispers, but as time went on, the whispers became voices and voices changed into screams. Running from the black prophecy, she had stopped writing letters to Cyborg and had begun her decline a paranoia and an unhealthy solitude.
As the years faded in a blur of white walls and tinted windows, when Trigon's haunting became unbearable. Visions of ruined buildings, magma oceans, and her friends dying before her eyes came into her mind in a continuous cycle. Starfire's voice talked to her many times, a disembodied torture that came from the shadows.
When this started, Raven found herself turning towards the voices, her voice bubbling up to her lips, and became caught in a vision that showed some torturous thing being done to the true owners of the voices. It became so powerful that she even heard footfalls, knocks on her door, and tappings on her tinted windows.
One day, she heard Beast Boy softly profess his love for her through the door. The words she thought would never be said to her, the words she had hoped to be said to her, and by the very person she wanted to hear them from… All an illusion, but she wished it were true. He had haunted her for three days in a row, a constant voice on the other side of the door, trying to converse with her, but he gave up and had left his confession hanging in the air as he disappeared. Raven missed his disembodied voice, but it was so tempting to turn around, to almost hope for his face, but also knowing that she'd just see him screaming and writhing in agony as fire consumed him.
Raven heard Starfire begging for her help. But she knew better than to look, to hope… Knowing it was some cruel illusion her father had devised to break her.
But when crimson light colored the ivory walls and flashed into her eyes, that it all came to an end and hope began to wriggle its fingers into her scarred soul.
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