We as people live in little tiny moments. I like little tiny moments. I also don't own any of these characters.
Beast Boy was transfixed by the objects on the counter.
She'd rinsed them out and set them to rest there, just after they had been drained of their contents. Before that, her slim fingers had wrapped themselves delicately around each handle, grazing the place of Beast Boy's own fingers moments ago.
"Awwww YEAH, Beast Boy! Who's the 'borg? I'm the 'borg!"
Not even the blaring, triumphant sounds of the Gamestation could drown out the chants of the one and only champion of Super Band Instrument Warrior: 80's Edition. Cyborg hooted, hollered, held up his axe, and shook everything he had, mechanical or otherwise, directly in the faces of his beleaguered bandmates. Robin set down his drumsticks rather forcefully. "There aren't even winners in this game. We all passed the song, didn't we?"
"Yeah, but Cybooger here got the highest score, so I guess he thinks that makes him Ultimate Guitar Wielder Pro or something," answered Beast Boy, looking sullen, mere milliseconds before Cyborg shouted about his guitar-playing prowess directly into his pointed right ear. He let out an involuntary, embarrassingly high-pitched yelp. "OW, Cyborg? Dude! Super sensitive hearing, hellooooooo?"
This just made Cyborg's grin widen at the seams. "Too bad that super sensitive hearing didn't help you win the game!" Bursting with happiness, but apparently no longer feeling the need to scream it into Beast Boy's now ringing ear, Cyborg took up his "guitar" once more. "One more round?"
Beast Boy nodded, his bass at the ready. Sighing loudly, as if he didn't really really really want to play one more round before bed, Robin held his drumsticks over the colored, flat drumset before him. Cyborg wordlessly selected a song, and soon the living room floor was shaking again with the melodious tones of 80's hair metal...at least, until the game paused unexpectedly. "What?" cried the boys simultaneously, turning to each other to figure out who had paused the game, and coming up empty. Beast Boy now set his eyes on the Gamestation, and at the same moment in which he spotted a familiar black aura, a raspy voice called, "I'm reading here, you know."
In their excitement, the boys had forgotten about their silent companion, whose nose had just emerged from the musty pages of a heavy-looking book. Her normally amethyst eyes, which now glowed a dangerous ivory, were stuck on the source of the noise. The boys were aware that, much like a traffic light, red was the color to worry about, but when the ivory flashed, red wasn't far off.
Still, her request was odd. The Gamestation and the boys playing it were far too loud for reading. Beast Boy knew she wasn't, not really,because if Raven had truly wanted to read in peace, her bedroom was only one magic spell away. Nevertheless, he absentmindedly grasped the remote and clicked the volume button until he saw Raven's forehead dip forward toward the pages again. With the shadow gone, the boys finished out their round, ending with a much quieter (but just as boisterous) rendition of Cyborg's victory cheer. Robin packed away the various controllers and cords, an unmistakable pout on his face. "Okay, that was our one last round, I'm going to bed now."
"Why are you in such a rush, Robbie? Starfire waitin' for you?" To punctuate his jeer, Cyborg let out a low whistle.
"No," Robin replied, suddenly very interested in the condition of his cape.
"He wishes she was, though," cackled Beast Boy, and the two jokesters erupted into a fit of giggles. Robin rolled his eyes (or, at least, Beast Boy thought he probably would have if that domino mask hadn't been in the way) and stormed out of the living room, Beast Boy's delicate ears picking up a muttered, "So what?"
Cyborg wiped a tear from his eye. "Aw, man. It never gets old." He gave a long, theatrical yawn. "Well, I'm beat. You going to bed, grass stain?"
Beast Boy's eyes flickered toward Raven. He hoped that Cyborg's robotic eye hadn't registered the movement. "Pretty soon. I'm not super tired just yet."
"All right, then. Goodnight, Beast Dude." He turned to the cloaked girl in the corner as he walked out the door. "Goodnight, Rae."
"Goodnight, Cyborg," she replied, a small smile gracing her lips. Beast Boy gave Cyborg's retreating form a dirty look. How come Raven's smiles came so easily for Cyborg?
Perhaps now was a good time. He was eager to show her what he'd gotten at the grocery story the other day, that for which he'd endured an entire evening of raised eyebrows, sniggers, and off-color jokes. Opening his cupboard, Beast Boy pushed aside canned vegetables and juices to find a small box of tea and a lone teacup. He set both on the counter and reached for Raven's tea-kettle, preparing to fill it up with water before he paused. Heating it that way would take too much time. Impatient as usual, Beast Boy filled his cup with lukewarm water and popped it in the microwave. Not the most sophisticated way to make tea, but thirty seconds later, he held a piping hot cup of water, and was perfectly content.
The boy returned to the counter and pulled out a teabag. Am I supposed to pour this over it? I already put the water in the right cup. Beast Boy opted to just drop in the teabag without much fanfare. Raven probably would have lost it at this tea-drinking transgression, but Beast Boy didn't see how it could make a difference. Slowly and deliberately, trying not to spill his tea, Beast Boy walked over to Raven's seat at the opposite table and set himself on a stool, perched precariously on the edge. Knowing that Raven, like a cat, had to come to him, he took small sips of his surprisingly delicious tea and waited. It really was a lot better than he thought, he decided, his lips lingering on the edge of the teacup to drink more.
After a long silence, Raven finally said, "Were, Beast Boy."
Beast Boy turned his head sharply, stifling a cry of pain from twisting his neck too quickly. "Huh?"
"He wishes she were waiting for him. It's the subjunctive." She took another sip of her tea, still not having noticed his own cup. "If you're going to pick on Robin, at least do it properly."
Boy, she was pretty when she read her books. Her eyes got all big and sparkly and...wait...subjuncty-what? "Uhhhhh..."
Raven sighed. "Never mind."
It was not fair that she could look so pretty when he should be annoyed with her. Mentally, Beast Boy cursed. He'd made himself look like a total fool again. And she hadn't even noticed—
"I see you've joined the dark side?"
Oh. She had. Beast Boy couldn't help letting a proud smirk pass over his lips before responding. "I thought I'd try it. I mean, you're always chugging this stuff like there's no tomorrow, so, I figured it had to be at least not totally horrible."
"You don't chug tea. You drink it," said Raven, as if that ended the matter. With her, it normally did. "Did you at least get yourself a decent kind?"
"Wild berry." Raven looked as though he'd just crawled out of one of Starfire's Tamaranean garden plants, and Beast Boy instantly knew he'd given the wrong answer. Before he could stop the words from leaving his lips, he blurted out, "Want to try it?"and offered out the cup.
He knew it was dumb, told himself it was childish repeatedly in his mind, but Raven was now looking at him with more curiosity than horror. She blinked, then did the unthinkable. "Okay."
Beast Boy was floored. Okay? Who was this girl who thought things were "okay" and what had she done with "I'd rather be disemboweled with a wooden sword" Raven?
He hardly processed her fingers curling around the handle of his teacup and the sensation of it leaving his own hands. Poised and ready for her undoubtedly negative reaction, Beast Boy watched her closely as she raised the cup and put her lips on its edge, tipped it back slightly, and brought it back down again.
Raven's lips puckered as if her tongue had been doused in lemon juice, and she resembled a small child preparing for her first schoolyard kiss. Beast Boy tried not to think about it. "It's, uh...very sweet."
Heat rose in his cheeks. "Uh, is it? I just thought it sounded good."
Surprisingly, Raven backpedaled. "It's not bad," she clarified, holding his cup out in his direction. "It just doesn't really taste how tea should taste."
"Oh." Beast Boy felt his ears droop and took back his tea, bringing it to his lips again but noting that the flavor wasn't as pleasant as before. He'd planned this moment for days, and inevitably, had mucked it up. "What should tea taste like?"
Raven hesitated, and looked around, as if she wanted guidance, but surprised him for the third time by offering out her own cup to him. "Here. Try this."
He was sure he was shaking, and prayed that she would overlook the sound of his pounding heart, because there was no way that she couldn't hear it. It was positively filling his ears. Beast Boy set his hands around the sides of the cup—he couldn't help noticing that her cup was cooler, she'd been drinking it longer—and put the cup to his lips, tasting the liquid within and feeling Raven's eyes on him. Yuck. It was planty and dirty and everything that Beast Boy was definitely not interested in. He couldn't help wrenching the cup from his lips and felt his face scrunch up.
"Ugh," Beast Boy murmured, and Raven raised an eyebrow. "I mean, it's..." He slammed his palm against his forehead, in awe of his own bumbling stupidity. Win her over by insulting her tea. Brilliant. You may as well keep going. "It's kinda bitter." Shyly, he set down her cup and watched her fingers curl around the handle, sadly, but fingers couldn't be sad—is she disappointed?
He wasn't sure why, but just after she took a sip of her own tea again, after her lips left her cup, Raven tilted her head to an angle, catlike and inquisitive, and looked down at it. Beast Boy narrowed his eyes, trying to see her clearer. What was she thinking about? "Hmm. I don't think so. I guess we just have different tastes."
No snarky comment? Weird. When Beast Boy shrugged and finished his own cup, Raven was watching, and when he glanced at her, she looked slightly above his left shoulder, eyes focused on something no one else in the room could see. She smelled really confusing, all awkwardness and shyness and nerves. "Uh, Raven, are you okay?"
"Huh?" Her glazed eyes cleared up in a snap, and all of those scents became muted. "Yes, Beast Boy, I'm fine. I'm just tired." Tired didn't explain her blush, but Beast Boy let it go. The whole thing had been a disaster, really, and he was thankful for her excuse. "Goodnight, Beast Boy."
"Goodnight, Rae." She took her cup and his own and floated over to the sink. Beast Boy didn't turn around as he heard the faint sounds of water running, the tear of a paper towel, and the whoosh of the sliding door. After stweing in his own misery for a spell, Beast Boy made his way to the counter and looked down at the two lonely teacups, remembering the feeling of the bitterness and sweetness on his lips and the pursed lips Raven had sported just after she'd tasted his...wait.
He realized. The problem wasn't the bitterness, or the sweetness, or the fact that he'd interrupted her favorite page to pretend to read in the living room. It was where his lips had been. Where her lips had been. Where both of their lips had been.
Beast Boy was immensely transfixed by the objects on the counter.
Another distracting oneshot successfully removed from my system! Hope you enjoyed it!