A Day In the Life of ... 'Braven'?
The first one-shot sequel to 'Beast Outta the Bag' that has been generated by my brain. We all knew it would happen sooner or later... though this seems pretty frickin' soon! Should be pretty fluffy, like a good little plot-bunny :)
Disclaimer: I don't own S#]T!
Picture the scene: a quiet, fairly typical day in the T-Tower, about two o'clock in the afternoon. It has been approximately four weeks since the now infamous email was sent by Beast Boy to Slade, containing a picture of himself and Raven. The reason for its infamy will soon be evident. Nightwing sat on the couch, closely examining a crossword and tapping a pencil against his chin. He was already bored with the puzzle but couldn't be bothered to find anything else to do. He realised it was vaguely pathetic but he was really just waiting for Starfire to return from her shower before he could decide what to do with himself. For a second, the notion of joining his girlfriend in the shower popped into his head. The room's other occupants glanced at him curiously when he, for no obvious reason, snapped a perfectly good pencil in half. Speaking of those occupants...
"Oh god...'BRAVEN?!' That's horrible!" Beast Boy sat near the end of the couch farthest from Nightwing, surrounded by a mess of newspapers and magazines. Many, if not most... okay, all of them featured an article on the image of Beast and Raven which, thanks to a petulant Slade, had found its way to every journalist in the western hemisphere. The idea hadn't really bothered the couple. They had never set out to hide their relationship but, at the same time, hadn't sought publicity either. Beast Boy elected to see what was being written about them, even joked about making a scrapbook. Right now, though, the situation seemed a little more gloomy. A few feet to his left, Raven sat reading a publication of her own, though it was a periodical on archaeology and mercifully had nothing about them in its pages.
"Braven?" Raven asked, still reading.
"That's our new collective nickname. I think I hate it" Beast Boy replied.
"Mm-hmm... why's that, Garfield?" she pressed, totally at ease.
"I dunno, I always thought it was stupid when they combined celebrity couples' names. Now it's us, it seems a billion times worse!" he yelled. Raven quirked her lip at that but never looked away from her magazine.
"A billion, huh?" Beast Boy turned to face her. In the first week or so after they finally got together, Raven had been the most upbeat he'd ever seen her. She cracked jokes, teased and flirted... he loved it. Now Raven had begun to acclimate to her new feelings and situation and started to act a little more like herself. She still cracked jokes, teased and flirted, of course, but in a way that was uniquely Raven: subtle, dry and with a thin veil of sarcasm. Somehow, he loved that even more. Rather than respond to her teasing this time, he smirked and shook his head, picking up the next magazine. His smirk disappeared almost the moment he opened the right page and Raven immediately noticed the change.
"Garfield...?" she inquired, gently. He didn't answer. He was perfectly still... not relaxed but completely unmoving, the tension in his shoulders obvious. His hands gripped the pages in front of him hard enough to tear them and his face... it was full of despair. And fear. Before she could speak again, he spoke, just above a whisper.
"Raven...I never thanked you, did I?" Her confusion was obvious.
"Thanked me? For what?" He closed his eyes and moved his hand in a circle around his face, his brow creased in a frustrated frown.
"For seeing past all of this. For seeing me for who I am," he answered. She was more puzzled than ever. Moving to his side, she looked at the article he had read. It was written by the journalist he had scared off after their last fight with Doctor Light, when the man had tried to aggravate her. That experience, it seemed, had soured him against Beast Boy as well, judging by his writing. The article had no real information but discussed the potential dangers of letting a half-demon and animal shape-shifter conceive. The hack had somehow filled the whole, double-page splash with the same nonsense. Then Raven saw it: every time Beast Boy was mentioned, it was rarely by name. There were several creative insults but most were aimed at Beast Boy's appearance: 'green monstrosity', 'scientific oddity' and 'the Titans' pet experiment' were only a few. Raven hadn't realised he was so insecure about his looks... maybe she should have. Apparently, he thought she was above such things and that thought was both humbling and heartbreaking.
"Garfield." He ignored her. Raven grabbed his face in both hands and forced him to look at her. Her own brow was furrowed and she looked at him in a way he hadn't seen in a while: like he was an idiot and she was about to explain why.
"Rae? W-" she shushed him with a finger on his lips, then spoke again.
"Garfield... you're beautiful!" His eyes widened and his eyebrows almost moved past his hairline. Without another word, Raven got up and marched for the door, indicating with a gesture he should remain where he was. He glanced over to Nightwing, who sported a similarly incredulous expression with a hint of discomfort, wondering if this was something he should really be witness to. Before he could move, Raven returned clutching a brace of brightly-coloured magazines. Gossip magazines. Beast Boy had missed them when he went shopping, only picking up newspapers and magazines aimed at a male audience. She roughly opened them, one at a time, and laid them in front of Beast Boy. She didn't seem the type for gossip...
"Where-" he began.
"They're Starfire's." she clarified. She began pointing out pertinent paragraphs and columns, each and every one praising Beast Boy's looks. Most were pretty shallow, one or two downright creepy, but they got the point across. His voice cracked as he spoke, a smile slowly making its way back to his face.
"They really think that about me?" he said. Raven finally wore a smile of her own.
"They're not the only ones, Garfield," she said, one eyebrow raised. He laughed then, blushing as well. She could still do that to him.
"Thanks, Rae... I guess I thought you didn't care about all that."
"It's true that I value what's on the inside... but that doesn't mean I don't notice what's on the outside," Raven said, putting a little heat in her voice at the end and blushing herself. Beast Boy laughed even louder.
"I, on the other hand am totally only after you for your body. The brains and awesomeness within are just a bonus," he joked, waggling his eyebrows at her. She only smirked.
"I bet you say that to every half-demon you meet." she teased. Suddenly, Beast Boy looked deadly serious. He leaned in close, his forehead against hers and spoke in a low, trembling voice.
"Thank you, Raven. I want you to know... I need you to know... You know the things I've seen, Rae... other worlds, other realities, outer space and the ocean floor. I've seen so many beautiful things but you... you are, by far, the most exquisitely, magnificently stunning sight I have ever laid eyes on."
"Wow..." Raven said, a blush now covering most of her face. Beast Boy chuckled at her... less than articulate reply. She cleared her throat and recovered herself, glancing down in slight embarrassment. Then she looked back at him, slowly closed her eyes and moved to plant a lingering kiss on the changeling's lips. He eagerly accepted, a tiny voice in his head wondering if he had forgotten something...which he readily ignored.
Nightwing sat with his paper right in front of him, covering his whole face while his friends got more and more... friendly. He really should have left when he had the chance.
Well, there we go. There's tons of stuff out there about BB helping Rae with her self-esteem so I thought, 'why not flip it around a bit?' So I did. I started out all light and silly and got all gooey again! I do quite like Raven's attitude: "You're hot, stupid!" Whatta gal!
P.S. If you want to continue reading this story, read the next one-shot, 'A Friend In Need'.