Disclaimer: I do not own the Teen Titans.
No flaming. This is a one-shot. Please, review if you can.
He should have known it was a mistake to not depart via his dormitory when he had decided to sneak out. He should have known it would land him in a mess of problems. He should have known going there would be a mistake.
He should have known it would hurt.
"You're home late."
Beast Boy didn't bother with acting surprised- he knew he was already discovered and in a heap of trouble. Besides; he'd smelled her from the second he entered the room. There was absolutely no way that he could miss the distinct wafting aroma of lavender and jasmine- the very ingredient she so commonly used in her herbal tea.
To miss that scent would be an insult to her.
"Funny; I didn't know I was being timed."
He could practically hear her rolling her eyes, yet her face remaining a blank slate as she stared into his very soul. He could hear her brain already creating several responses for any path this conversation took. He wasn't too eager to hear any of them aloud, however.
"You weren't." Beast Boy heard her light footsteps among the shagged carpet as she stood up ever so quietly. It wasn't intentionally- it was her natural stealthy style. "At least, not by I."
To anyone, that would have been a very cryptic answer; but to Beast Boy, it was just another reminder that he'd given his team the slip for an unknown occasion. It was also a blatant reminder that he was not going to be greeted warmly by at least two of his fellow teammates once dawn broke the sky.
"Is he mad?" Beast Boy asked quietly. He still hadn't turned to face her- he wasn't sure if he could. He didn't trust his emotions at the moment.
Even without her answer, Beast Boy knew he was. It didn't matter that he could hear her soft, almost inaudible snort, or the gentle shrug of her petite shoulders; he knew who they were talking about and his strict regime.
The green Titan sighed a breath full of the pain and disappointment he'd be subjugated for the day before he turned to make eye-contact with the only Titan who could possibly read his mind. Emerald eyes connected with amethyst as they held a brief silent conversation.
It was Beast Boy who broke the silence.
"What is it, Raven?"
The Titan in question was silent. Just as Beast Boy had predicted she would be.
"You went to see her, didn't you?" Beast Boy almost winced- it hadn't exactly been something he'd projected for anyone to know, let alone find out without even knowing where he'd been. Still; this was Raven he was dealing with. Secrets were almost always exposed within her presence.
Beast Boy didn't answer- not directly. "I went out."
Raven rolled her eyes. "Out to see her."
"It doesn't matter where I went," Beast Boy said firmly. Raven's eyes narrowed at his sharp tone. He had rarely used that tone besides the obvious angry moments exchanged between the two as their interaction increased vastly within the years. As they were both 18, they'd found themselves drawn to one another more and more as the days passed.
Raven didn't speak- she could sense there was more he wished to say.
She was right. "All that matters, is that I'm back now."
"And if you weren't? Then what?" Raven questioned stoically.
"I'm a Titan, Raven. I'm not a helpless baby who needs to be changed," Beast Boy retorted. Raven's eyes grew ever so slightly darker as they two commenced in a stare-down, neither ready to yield. It had been rare for Beast Boy to participate in these showdowns, but when he did, Raven had learned he was far more than capable of possessing a sharp tongue.
"Then why did you run off without telling anyone?"
Beast Boy growled quietly. "I hadn't expected it to be so... long."
Neither party spoke- both had too much to say that would only initiate a severe fight that would inevitably wake up the slumber team that rested just outside the main room.
"I wasn't planning on taking her back." Beast Boy finally said.
"I wasn't worried about that."
"I know... I just felt like I had to say that."
Raven let out a breath ever-so quietly.
"Why did you have to go?"
Beast Boy sighed and looked away. For a brief second, Raven could see the immense pain that shimmered behind his emerald eyes. She could see the horrible truth that he had witnessed that evening. She could feel the anguish that was coursing throughout his heart and throbbing within his wounded mind.
The jade Titan slowly shuffled his feet as he made his way over to the large windows that overlooked the ever-expanding Jump City skyline. The city, rare as it was, remained in-tact and at peace as the gentle caress of the moon touched down upon the buildings and streets. The sounds of the night-time city life were muffled by the Tower's thick walls, but to Beast Boy, he could imagine them vivid as a rainbow after a rainstorm.
"I... I had to see her. One last time."
Raven knew that would be his answer. She wanted to be upset, but she knew that in his shoes, she'd be doing the exact same thing. It was their nature as heroes to overlook the citizens they protected. Sometimes... they formed dangerous and painful bonds with some citizens that were just too difficult to let go of.
"She's happy, Rae. She has a family... friends..." Beast Boy mumbled. Raven could hardly miss the sharp breath he took in as he finished his sentence. "A boyfriend, too."
"You know... you're like that, too," Raven stated quietly. Beast Boy hummed just as quiet, but his thin green lips formed into a faint smile as he recognized the truth behind those words.
"You're right." Beast Boy sat down on the couch, crossing his arms and hunching over to look at his feet. He didn't know why, but something within kept him from being solely happy. "Still hurts though."
Raven almost didn't speak, but the words made their way from his mouth before she could stop herself. "Always does."
"There's nothing to make the pain go away, huh?"
Raven sat down next to Beast Boy. A year ago, she would have made sure to keep plenty of distance between the two so that she wouldn't need to worry about any physical interaction. But now, she was not the same girl she was a year ago. She'd accepted the small, steady stream of changes that worked their way into her life.
She'd accepted who she was; and a vast majority of that was due to the jade teenager next to her.
"Would you necessarily want it to go away?"
Beast Boy's ghostly smile vanished, but that's not to say his smile left his eyes. Raven noted that even though he wasn't overjoyed, his eyes were still a bit brighter than they had been when he first arrived- and that was a plus in her book.
"No... no, I guess not," Beast Boy answered after a second of thinking. "I do wish I could dull it down something, though. It gets a little much to bear some days."
Raven almost snorted, but she ended up containing herself at the last second. "I am well aware."
Beast Boy glanced at her with a mirthless smile. "I know."
Raven looked at him before they both looked away, turning their attention back out the window as the summer-time stars began to congregate in the sky. It was hard to see via the couch, but the faint glimmer of the interstellar stars made their existence known to the two nocturnal Titans as they remained wrapped in a cocoon of their silence.
"Don't you ever wonder anything about Malchior?" Beast Boy asked. Raven wanted to lock her jaw and tell him to never speak of such a name again, but something inside her brain told her it was alright. Nothing needed to be concealed- not on this night.
She thought a moment before speaking. "I do. I wonder why he felt the need to deceive me; I also wondered what it was that provoked him to become... antagonistic."
Beast Boy looked at her thoughtfully. "I'm not sure, honestly."
"Nor am I," Raven said quietly. She looked at Beast Boy a second before turning her attention away again. "Why do you ask?"
Beast Boy hummed. "I always compared the two of them- Terra and Malchior. I always thought they were one of the same; they both pretended to love us, then they betrayed us. They broke our hearts." Raven couldn't deny the logic behind Beast Boy's comparison and she found herself drawing those same summaries very often.
"But?" Raven asked, as if sensing more.
Beast Boy smiled for a second before returning neutral. "But I don't think that it's necessarily true. I mean, Malchior was a bad dude, yeah. But... when you think deeply about it, he and Terra are nothing alike. He was bent on self-preservation... he wanted to be free. Terra just wanted control and let her anger do the thinking."
Raven nodded. Beast Boy took her silence as a queue to continue. "Terra did love me... at least, a little. That's what made that so painful. We had genuine feelings. Malchior just took your loneliness and amplified it. He cut you off from us. That's what makes that different. They seem similar, until you look at what they were to us."
"That's all very true... and well thought-out..." Raven said. Beast Boy looked slightly proud and Raven couldn't help her small smile. "But that didn't answer my question."
"I asked because I think about Terra a lot. Well... I did. Now, not so much. But before, I thought about her a lot and there were a lot of times I wanted to just, leave and go see her. Maybe plead again. Try and win her back."
Raven nodded, understanding the rationale Beast Boy had. She, at one point, had it herself. She believed there was possibility for her to change Malchior's goal of freedom and deceit to try and understand her again and be on the side of good- her side. She tried so hard, but she knew that deep down, it was futile.
The realization of what Beast Boy said, however, struck Raven at that moment.
"That's why you went to see her?"
Beast Boy shifted uncomfortably. "Like I said... it wasn't to win her back. But... I do still care about her. I think I always will. Not as much as you, but still... I wanted to... t-to..."
Raven placed her tiny hand on Beast Boy's shoulder soothingly. "You can tell me."
He nodded and took a breath in.
"I wasn't sure if she'd have family there," he said slowly. "So when she got her diploma, I was going to cheer for her... just in case."
Beast Boy almost threw up as he remembered the pains he had when he saw Terra lightly kiss another guy- completely and blissfully unaware of Beast Boy's presence. She had her life now, he remembered. He was no longer a part of it.
"I... I'm happy for her. Ecstatic, honestly. It just... hurts to know I was once a part of that life. And now..."
"Now she doesn't even want to remember us. I know."
Beast Boy nodded numbly, slightly recalling the time he told her of their conversation.
"That girl... she no longer exists Beast Boy. Things change."
"Things change..." Beast Boy muttered numbly. Raven wrapped her arm around Beast Boy's torso boldly and pulled herself into his chest. Surprised by the action, Beast Boy wrapped his arm around her back and held her against him, relishing her warmth.
"That isn't always bad, Gar. Look at us... we changed. Not all change is bad."
Beast Boy, for the first time that night, smiled widely and looked Raven directly in the eyes.
"No, it's not."
Before she could stop herself, Raven felt a yawn work its way up her throat and escape her mouth. Beast Boy took immediate notice and smiled coyly. Raven felt the tinge of heat on her face, but managed to suppress all feelings of embarrassment as she stood up, taking Beast Boy's hand.
"You've got a lot to make up for Robin. I'm going to bed, care to join me?"
Beast Boy grinned wider. "Absolutely."
"Good," Raven said with her famous ghost of a smile. "Are you okay now?"
"Yeah," Beast Boy said as he gave one last glance to the stars. He knew it was dumb, but he swore for one second he could see a star that was almost smiling down upon him. He shook his head and yawned toothily.
"Yeah; I'm okay."
I don't want to see any flames... there wasn't really a reason for writing this, but I had a bit of fun. It was just on my mind. So... hope you enjoyed it. There was Beast Boy/Raven romance within. That's all. Maybe I'll write more in the future.