Hello friends I am here!
So I did a thing. Excuse me if I'm a little rusty, it's been a while, but I love me some RobStar so here's this. I'm working on getting my 'sealegs' back or whatever metaphor best works for getting back into writing. I'll keep this brief and say more at the end. Hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: I don't own Titan Titans or any other pop culture references. Obvs.
This was all Beast Boy's fault. If the changeling hadn't convinced the whole team to go out to that new vegan-friendly Chinese restaurant, Robin wouldn't be sitting there with his hand on Starfire's, speechless and blushing. He'd probably be sitting at home, at his desk, in the crime lab and working on reports instead of struggling to form words while Cyborg and Beast Boy grinned wickedly at him.
If Beast Boy just hadn't seen today's mail…
Earlier that day, Cyborg had strolled into the common room with a large wooden crate atop his right shoulder. "Mail call, ya'll!" he announced, striding over to the counter and dumping the box on top of it.
Starfire looked up from where she was playing with Silkie on the couch; gently setting her pet next to Beast Boy, who was intensely focused on his latest video game, she flew over join Cyborg in the kitchen.
"Glorious!" she exclaimed, alighting next to him and beaming. She looked on excitedly while Cyborg pried the top off, revealing a sizeable mass of papers inside.
The two Titans both grabbed a handful of the contents and set themselves to sorting through it, used to this ritual by now. Though the post office was kind enough to send the Titans their mail across the water, the teenagers still had to sort through all the post they received. Most of it was fan mail, letters, and the occasional package from citizens of all ages, which had to be sorted according to which Titan it was addressed, but there was always a bit of spam mail and advertisements that were put into all P.O. boxes.
The pair went through their respective piles of paper in silence for a few moments, Cyborg chuckling at a poem addressed to Raven by a goth boy while Starfire smiled affectionately at a child's crayon drawing of Robin.
"Hey B.B., wanna come help?" Cyborg called to his green friend as he set aside a small pile of letters with his own name on them.
"Muh." Beast Boy made a noncommittal noise, eyes were still glued to the screen.
The mechanical Titan eyed the back of his friends head, then glanced back down at the papers in his hand. "Alright, I guess I'll just open this letter from last year's Miss Jump City myself," he lamented loudly with a shrug.
Almost as soon as he had said it, there was a clatter of plastic on the floor as Beast Boy dropped his remote and launched himself over the back of the couch. "Dibs!" he yelled, hurtling into the kitchen and snatching a piece of paper out of Cyborg's hand.
Skidding to a halt, he eagerly began to read the letter, only to realize it wasn't a letter at all but a takeout menu advertising a new Chinese restaurant. "Aw man," he whined, slapping it down on the counter and slouching into a seat next to Starfire. "That's not funny, Cy," he grumbled, pointed ears drooping, "you know how much I like Miss Jump City."
"Gotcha over here, didn't it?" Cyborg teased, grinning. He pinched Beast Boy's ear and wiggled it, the green boy swatting his hand away away and picking up the menu to glance over it idly.
Beast Boy's ears had just begun to perk up when the doors at the top of the steps swished open as Raven entered, an empty mug in her hand. She floated over to join her teammates in the kitchen, pouring herself a new cup of tea from the kettle on the stove.
"Mail?" she queried, giving a passing glance to the neat piles taking up most of the counter space.
"Indeed!" Starfire replied, putting down a letter she had been reading. "I enjoy very much the kind words people send us," she said, beaming warmly at the mail scattered around.
"Hey Raven, this guy has some kind words for you," Cyborg said, waving a rectangular pant sample (the same shade of blue as her cape) with words written on it in her direction, a mischievous glint in his eye.
Raven cocked an eyebrow but took it. "He couldn't have just used a piece of paper like a normal person?" she asked dryly, beginning to read it as she sipped her tea.
A moment later there was a choking noise and black energy enveloped the letters and blasted them into the air, causing Starfire to shriek in surprise and Beast Boy to topple over onto the ground with a yelp.
Raven coughed wildly and glared at Cyborg as the mail fluttered down around them, the latter looking sheepish.
"You thought that would be funny?" she growled, and he held up his hands defensively.
"The letter, yeah! I didn't think you'd react that way!" he said indignantly, quickly moving a few steps back as Raven's eyes flashed red.
"Cyborg, please: what is the meaning of this phrase?"
Both Raven and Cyborg's heads swiveled to Starfire, who had picked up the discarded fan mail to see what had so upset her friend. Cyborg's eye widened in alarm and it was Raven's turn to grin maliciously. "Uhh…"
The alien squinted at the writing. "Is he saying he wishes t-"
"Oo-kay, that's enough!" the older Titan said quickly, snatching the card from Starfire and crumpling it up.
The Tamaranian's eyebrows furrowed in confusion as she watched Cyborg toss it over his shoulder. Meanwhile, Beast Boy made his way back onto his chair with one hand, the other still holding the takeout menu.
"Guys!" His friends' attention captured, he waved the menu in their faces. "We have to go here!"
"And where exactly is that?" Raven asked, trying to get a good look at the front of the pamphlet while he shook it.
"If it's some weird new vegetarian place- " Cyborg began, but Beast Boy flailed his arms around to cut him off.
"First of all, vegetarian places aren't weird," he informed Cyborg haughtily. "Second, that's why this place is perfect! The menu has a bunch of stuff that I like, but a bunch of stuff you like too!"
Cyborg cocked his eyebrow. "…really?" he asked after a moment, sounding skeptical yet intrigued.
"Yeah dude, check it out!" Beast Boy grinned and thrust the paper at Cyborg, who took it and began to scan the words as Robin entered the room.
"Hey guys, what's up?" he asked, making his way over to the table and coming to a halt between Starfire and Cyborg. "Mail?"
"Nope, lunch!" Beast Boy crowed excitedly.
"Lunch?" Robin repeated, slightly confused. "It's one-thirty."
"Aw, pleeeeease, Robin?" the changeling whined, gripping his hands together in a begging gesture. "I'm hungry, I bet everyone else is too- "
"I'm good," Raven interjected.
"- so let's good get some food, it's Sunday afternoon and all the bad guys are probably taking time off too!" Beast Boy finished, ignoring Raven.
Robin frowned. "Crime doesn't have a calendar, Beast Boy," he told his teammate, turning to the pile of mail on the table and beginning to sift through it. He unfolded a piece of paper with "to the teen titans" scrawled on it to find an admittedly impressive schoolchild's drawing of the team in front of the Tower, smiling and waving. The corner of his mouth twitched upwards.
"Dude, come on!"
Any hint of a smile dropped off Robin's face and his attention was dragged back to Beast Boy.
"Beast Boy, we have things to do today. I have paperwork, we have training scheduled later-"
"Yeah, so that's why we should go right now!" Beast Boy said brightly. "That way we'll be ready for all that stuff later!"
"Actually Rob, this place looks pretty cool," Cyborg interrupted, lifting his head up from reading the menu. "I wouldn't mind going. And BB does have a point; if we eat now, we won't be all full for training later."
Robin's mask sloped downwards, the wind taken out of his sails. He turned to the girls. "Do you guys want to go, too?"
Raven shrugged but Starfire nodded enthusiastically, almost as excited as Beast Boy. "I would be most excited to try the food of China; I have not previously tasted it, and it looks delightful," she said, clasping her hands and looking starry-eyed. Beast Boy and Cyborg grinned to each other, knowing that now that Starfire had said she wanted to go there was no way Robin would say no.
"…fine," Robin grumbled. "But we have to be back by four."
Beast Boy laughed and punched the air. "Sweet! I call shotgun!" he shouted over his shoulder, racing towards the garage. Cyborg's face dropped immediately and he took after the younger Titan.
"Oh no you don't! Not after what happened last week!" the rest of the team could hear him shouting down the hall.
Raven sighed and floated out, followed by Starfire. Robin looked at the mail and sighed as well, then walked after them.
"So, whatta guys think?" Beast Boy asked the other Titans seated around the table, leaning on it confidently as a server placed their meals in front of them.
"Not bad, B," Cyborg admitted. "This place is pretty nice."
"It is wonderful!" Starfire agreed. "The atmosphere is fascinating, although I am not sure I understand the chopping sticks," she said, sliding her disposable chopsticks out of their packaging and examining them. "Do they function as knives of some sort?"
Robin chuckled. "No Star, they're called chopsticks. It's what people in China traditionally use to eat their food; kind of like how we use forks."
She watched her friends pull theirs apart in preparation for eating; carefully, so as not to break the fragile wood with her alien strength, Starfire mimicked the action and smiled when her chopsticks broke apart cleanly. She then proceeded to stab the contents of her plate with the sticks and lift the food to her mouth.
Raven looked up from her soup, staring in surprise at her friend. "Uh… Starfire? I think you're using them the wrong way…"
"Hm?" Starfire paused in her eating. Looking around, Raven appeared to be right; all the other Titans were holding both sticks in one hand and not piercing their food at all. A red tint appeared under her orange skin. "Oh, my apologies…"
Robin smiled affectionately at her. "Here, I'll show you." Shifting slightly to his right where she sat next to him, he brought his hand near hers, holding his chopsticks properly. "This is how it should look."
Starfire studied his hand for a moment, then attempted to rearrange her own to copy it. A frown crinkled her forehead as she tried and failed to hold both in one hand as Robin did.
After watching her struggle with her chopsticks for about fifteen seconds, Robin put his down and intervened. "It's sort of like holding a pencil," he explained, taking Starfire's chopsticks. Holding her right hand in his, he gently maneuvered it into the right position and placed the sticks properly in it. Positioning her fingers around them and closing her thumb over it all, he smiled her. "There."
Starfire blinked at her hand and then looked at her food. She tentatively prodded at her meal with the tips of her chopsticks. "This does not seem to be very effective," she noted.
"No, you have to open them," Robin explained, demonstrating with his own, "and pick up the food with them, like this."
Starfire watched intently and nodded, causing a smile to tug at the corners of his mouth. Looking at her hand again, she hesitantly shifted her fingers, uttering a noise of surprise when the top chopstick rolled between her fingers and dropped to the table. She muttered something in Tamaranian under her breath and put it back in her hand, determined to get it right, only to fumble both this time.
She turned to Robin, a distressed crinkle appearing between her small eyebrows. "I do not understand how to operate this utensil," Starfire said plainly, a hint of frustration in her voice.
"Let me help," Robin offered, and she picked up the chopsticks a final time, pleased to at least get the position correct on her own. Hand prepared, she extended it towards Robin.
"You just have to keep pressure on the bottom one with your thumb but keep a lighter grip on the top…"
He wrapped his hand around hers, ignoring the sudden increase in his heartbeat. Leaning in closer to her, he gently applied pressure with his thumb onto hers and curled his fingers around her own curled ones to keep the bottom chopstick in place. Finally, he rested his pointer finger lightly on top of hers.
"There," he murmured, eyes flicking up to study Starfire's face for a moment. She was watching their hands, lips pursed, eyebrows furrowed slightly, obviously engrossed in what she was doing. He always liked seeing her focused like this; one of his favorite things about Starfire was her curiosity and the joy she got from learning, be it about Raven's meditations or the plot of Beast Boy's favorite cartoon.
"…hello? Yo, lover boy!"
Cyborg's voice cutting through his musings, Robin blinked and looked away from his best friend.
"What?" he snapped irately at the older Titan, whose smug grin matched Beast Boy's next to him.
"Hey," said Cyborg innocently, holding up his hands in defense, "I just thought I'd let you know that Starfire's food is getting cold, so you might wanna finish up your lesson."
And so there Robin was, frozen in place but becoming hotter as an embarrassed flush crawled up his back upon remembering he was in public. He opened his mouth to retort, realizing a second too late that he had thought of nothing to say, so all that came out was, "…uhhh…"
"Huh?" He snapped his head back to Starfire, who was looking at him with those big green eyes, her confusion evident in them; whether it was about the sudden halt in instruction or what Cyborg had just said, he wasn't sure. "Oh. Yea- yeah," he mumbled hastily, quickly removing his hand from hers. Starfire's eyes widened and she slumped slightly, wondering if she had done something wrong.
Robin cleared his throat and tried to sound causal. "You've got most of it; just move your pointer finger down and it should work."
Starfire didn't look very confident but did as he said, holding her chopsticks over a piece of chicken and pinching it in them. She squeezed her hand and lifted; a moment later she let out a delighted giggle as it successfully traveled through the air to her mouth.
Chewing and swallowing, she smiled. "Glorious!"
Cyborg waggled his eyebrow at Robin. "Looks like you're a good teacher," he said, unfazed by the heated glare Robin was sending him.
"Agreed, Cyborg; Robin was most helpful," Starfire chimed in between mouthfuls of food, not catching the teasing tone in her friend's voice.
"He's pretty good at hands-on help," Beast Boy continued, nudging Cyborg and grinning. The two snickered to each other while Raven rolled her eyes.
"You guys know we still have training later, right?" she reminded them.
The two stopped laughing abruptly and looked at Robin, who was now smiling in a way that worried them.
So there's that. Basically what this is going to be is exactly what the title says, just a collection of drabbles inspired by stuff from that imagineyourotp tumblr. Some of them will be like this one, more in the current timeframe of the show, some might take place in the future, some might even be AU-ish, who knows what'll happen! It'll always be Robin and Starfire though. So yeah, taking a moment to credit the imagineyourotp tumblr, since that's exclusively where I'm getting the inspiration for each drabble (I might tweak or twist the prompt a little but that's generally what I'm looking at). Just wanted to make sure to give credit where it's due, don't wanna offend anyone or make something think they're getting ripped off. (Would that even happen? I dunno. Whatever.)
I'm on summer break right now, so I'm planning on doing more of these. Don't worry about this being abandoned (at least until August ahaha just kidding (sort of)). I don't know if I'll be finishing my other two stories I started a long time ago, since I kind of forgot where I was going with them, but if I ever do remember enough I'll write it down somewhere and see about finishing it.
But! I did get a new idea for a new story, the first two chapters of which I have actually written! I'm not going to post it yet, mostly because I want to have a good amount down before I start publishing it, that way it won't end up unfinished or abandoned/forgotten. I do have it though. So yeah, that's all for now. I hope that was a pleasant reading experience for you!
May the force be with you (I'm going to Star Wars Weekend with my best friends Saturday and I am totes stoked)