The Titans came home after a typical fight with a couple of armed robbers. Nobody had really gotten hurt, except for minor cuts and bruises, although B was in the infirmary with one particularly deep cut. As the official healer of the group, as she said, (not wanting to reveal she actually did care), Raven was going to patch him up.
"Come on BB just let the girl help you!" Cyborg shouted, frustrated.
"Really, I'm fine. See?" he said, thumping his chest. The cut was on his back, which was a problem for him.
"Beastboy, if you don't lie down on the table now I will make you." Raven's eyes glowed white maliciously. 'Why won't he let me?' Raven wondered to herself.
"Can you heal me with my shirt on?"
"For the LAST TIME, NO!" Raven curled black tendrils of energy around Beast Boy, holding him still. He struggled against them, but the energy forced him onto the table and ripped the remains of his shirt off. Raven quickly said her chant and healed him. As the tendrils melted away, both she and Cyborg saw something they hadn't expected.
"I gotta go," Beast Boy said quietly before morphing into a cheetah and speeding off. Raven heard his door slide shut rather quickly. Starfire and Robin walked in looking completely confused after seeing the green feline sprint down the hall.
"Please, what is wrong with friend Beast Boy?" Starfire asked, clinging onto Robin.
Cyborg and Raven stood rooted in their spots, mouths slightly agape. After gaining back his speech, Cyborg said simply, "Man, B is marked up."
Beast Boy rushed to his room, his door closing behind him. The tears were falling fast now; he was glad he had made it to his room before he started crying. He threw himself onto the top bunk of his bed and curled up in a ball. His sensitive hearing picked up footsteps coming down the hall. He tried to wipe the tears away, but anyone could tell he had been crying.
"Beast Boy, it's us," Robin said, not knowing exactly what to say.
"Go away," he choked out, trying to avoid the inevitable conversation about the scars across the length of his back.
"Beast Boy, we need to talk about this."
"NO!" Beast Boy said, uncharacteristically angry. Raven wasn't sure, but she thought she heard him growl just a little.
'Beast Boy is never upset; we should leave him alone for a while.' Raven thought. She motioned to the others to follow her back to the Commons Room.
"Where and when did he get those?" Robin said, stating the obvious questions on everyone's minds.
"Oh friends, I am greatly confused. Has Beast Boy been keeping the secrets?" Star asked, worried about her friend's well-being.
"Star, everyone on the team has a history. This is just one of the first times Beast Boy's has come up." Cyborg said, shuddering slightly, remembering his own past.
"This needs to be dealt with now," Robin said, his leader qualities coming into play. His eyes narrowed beneath his mask.
"Raven, you're awfully quiet," said Cyborg.
Her mind made up, Raven got up and floated out of the room saying, "I'm going to go talk to him."
There was soft knocking at Beast Boy's door. "Beast Boy, it's just me."
He knew exactly who it was without asking. "I don't feel like talking, Rae," B said in a sad, pleading tone. He didn't want anyone to see him like this, especially Raven.
"Fine then. I'm coming in whether you like it or not," and with that Raven phased through the door. Upon entering, she saw the usual mess in Beast Boy's room, with him sitting up on the top bunk of his bed. He hadn't put a fresh shirt on yet, and she noticed that he had some old, bent photos in his hand. He quickly thrust them under the covers, hoping she hadn't seen them. She flew onto the bunk and sat beside him, putting her arm around him and pulling his head to her shoulder.
He immediately started to sob into Raven. She petted his hair, calming him down a little. He tried to breathe normally again, but his shuddering made that difficult.
"Beast Boy, do you want to talk about this?" Raven asked him quietly.
"I didn't do this to myself," Beast Boy said. Raven could only barely understand him through his sobs.
Raven breathed a silent sigh of relief; she was afraid that he had. But realization hit her soon after. If he didn't do it, then who had hurt him? She had previously thought he had had a happy past based on the way he acted.
"Then who did, Beast Boy?" Raven asked, still stroking his hair. Questions were soon swirling around in her mind. 'Are Mento and Rita his parents? If they aren't, then who are? Are they still alive? Was he born with his powers?'
"It was a long time ago," he said, avoiding the question. He toyed with the covers on his bed, not looking Raven in the eyes.
"You aren't going to feel any better until you tell me about it. I'm worried about you. Please talk to me," Raven pleaded, hugging Beast Boy.
Beast Boy contemplated this for a long time. "Okay, Raven. But don't tell the others. Especially not Starfire…"
Raven looked quizzically at him for a second before she understood. Starfire was so sweet and innocent. Beast Boy obviously didn't want her to know about the awful things he was about to tell her. She nodded to show she agreed.
"Do you want me to tell you everything?" Beast Boy begged, reluctant to reveal anything at all.
"I really would like to know so I can help you."
Beast Boy took a deep breath and began his story.
Back in the Commons Room, the remaining three Titans were talking about the whole situation. "Please someone explain to me what is happening." Starfire asked for the third time, the boys not being able to hear her over their own argument/conversation.
"PLEASE SOMEONE SPEAK TO ME!" Star yelled, tired of being ignored.
"Geez, Star! Okay! Now what is it that you were asking?" Cyborg asked, trying to calm down the Tamaranian princess.
"I simply wish to know what is going on with friend Beast Boy and friend Raven. Why can we not go and see if they are the alright?"
"Star, Beast Boy is too upset about this to talk to all of us right now. I'm sure he's already kicked Raven out by now." Robin said, putting his hand over hers comfortingly.
"I grew up in Africa. My parents, Mark and Marie Logan, were biologists. They were studying the DNA of different animals down there, especially monkeys. One day, as I was wondering around the jungle at the edge of the village, I saw a green monkey. I had always been good with animals, and my parents were studying them, so I wasn't afraid. I reached out to touch it, and it bit me really hard on the arm." He turned his arm so that Raven could see two small scars, fang marks.
"It gave me the disease that it had, Sakutia. It's fatal to humans. My parents had been working on a cure to eliminate sickness in animals. It basically contained animal genes; they figured that if certain animals were immune to some diseases, then a mix of all the animal kingdoms could make each animal immune to everything. They hadn't tested it yet, but there was no time. They gave me the injection and saved my life. Unfortunately, the disease left me, well, green. I think the injection is what gave me powers, but I'm not sure." Beast Boy paused, wanting to take a break from his story.
"Wow, Beast Boy. So if your parents' cure was effective, why isn't it being used?"
"It really wasn't safe yet, so they had to improve the cure. There was no one that could continue their research," he said sounding even more depressed then he had been. Tears had once again begun to slide down his face. Raven could feel sadness, anger, and, guilt? radiating off of him.
"Friend Raven has been gone for a long period of time. Perhaps Beast Boy has done the opening up to her?" Starfire said.
"I don't know Star, he was pretty upset. Maybe we should go find them." Robin started to get up off the couch, but a metal hand grabbed his cape.
"Whoa, whoa, whoa, Bird Boy. Just give Rae a chance."
"What do you mean?" Raven asked softly, wrapping the covers around her and the now whimpering Beast Boy.
He tried to tell her, but the words stuck in his throat. He thrust his hand under the covers and pulled the photos out. He shakily put them into Raven's lap. She picked them up and studied the first one. There was a little boy in the arms of two adults. 'This must be Beast Boy and his parents while he was still normal.' The only way you could tell it was Beast Boy was by his eyes. They were the same deep, rich emerald. Raven looked at the crying boy beside her. He wasn't his normal jungle green, but a pale, sickly green.
"Beast Boy, it's okay. I'm…um…we're here for you."
Sucking air in, Beast Boy calmed down enough to continue his story. "Thanks Rae, it means a lot. Um…anyway…a few months, or maybe a year, after I got my powers, my parents and I were in a boat, crossing the river to find a gorilla colony. Well, in Africa, the weather can change in an instant. Suddenly, there we were in the middle of a thunderstorm. My parents kinda just looked at each other, and my dad told me to change and fly away. I didn't want to leave, but he just told me to go and not to worry about them. I just remember being on the shore watching the boat go down and…"
Raven was shocked. Beast Boy was whimpering and had put his head in her lap. "I could've saved them Rae. I could've saved them…" He squeezed his eyes shut and started trembling.
"Beast Boy! Don't you ever think that it's your fault! You were so young; you couldn't have changed into anything that could have saved them. Don't blame yourself."
"I can't help it Rae," he said, sitting up. "I could have! They would be alive if I had just turned into something mmmpphh hmmpphh….." Beast Boy crossed his eyes to see Raven's hand clamped firmly across his mouth. 'Has he been living with this guilt his whole life? He hasn't even told me about the scars yet. How much worse is it going to get?'
"I said stop blaming yourself! Your parents would want you to move on. It's okay to miss them, but you shouldn't feel guilty." In response, Beast Boy just clung onto Raven's cloak and sniffled.
"Boyfriend Robin, it is getting rather late. Should not Raven have already returned?"
"Don't worry, Star. BB is probably just telling Raven about his, er, problems." Robin said, not wanting to upset Starfire. He hoped she wouldn't ask him any more questions. Cyborg had gone to bed a while ago, leaving only him and Starfire in the Commons Room.
"Problems?" Star asked innocently.
"Well, all of us have had problems in our past, like you and the Gordians." Robin said, trying to put things into perspective for her.
"Oh, I did not realize all of us have been through difficult things! Have you had such trials?" Starfire asked, curious.
"Um…yeah Star. I really don't want to talk about it." Robin said, squirming a little.
"Oh Robin, I truly did not mean to make you the upset! Let me cook you a traditional Tamaranian dish of apology!" Starfire started to fly towards the kitchen when Robin grabbed her by the hand.
"That's okay Star, really! Let's just watch a movie together," Robin said, not wanting to repeat his last encounter with Starfire's cooking.
"Glorious! I shall pick a movie for us to watch!"
"Is that when the Doom Patrol found you?" Raven asked Beast Boy after he had calmed down.
"No. I was six or seven after…that…happened. As I was sitting on the river bank, stranded, I got kidnapped. They made me use my powers to commit crimes. If I didn't, well, worse than these would have happened. They locked me in a cage, and kept me in terrible condition so if I changed, the physical stress would've killed me. They only fed me right before they had me do the dirty work… I eventually escaped, after two years of that. It was determined that Nicholas Galtry, a family 'friend' had custody over me. After he realized that when I turned eighteen I would inherit all my parents' money, he decided to murder me so he could get it all. Thankfully, I found out and ran away before he could kill me." Beast Boy tried not to cry; he took deep breaths and ended up only burying his face in his hands.
"Oh Beast Boy…I'm so sorry. I didn't realize all that had happened to you." She pulled him into a tight hug and stroked his hair.
"It's okay, Rae. After I…left…the Patrol, I finally found the perfect family."
Starfire had fallen asleep only about halfway through the movie. Robin glanced over at her. 'She's so beautiful, and she looks peaceful. I should take her up to her room so she can sleep better.' He scooped her up in her arms, and started walking towards her room. She unconsciously snuggled close to his chest. He opened her door and placed her softly on the bed. He kissed her on the forehead before he left her room.
Raven looked at Beast Boy, who had finally stopped crying. She had calmed him down by petting his head slowly. 'How is he so optimistic all the time with all this weighing on him? How could he have gone this long without telling anybody? He looks so calm. The ears really do make him look cute… Where did that come from?" She was interrupted from her thoughts by a low rumbling sound. She looked down at the boy in her lap. Was he...purring? Yes, she was sure of it. It was kind of…sweet.
He seemed to wake himself up purring. 'Guess he's a light sleeper, like a cat.' He seemed to realize he was in her lap because he got up with a start.
"I am so sorry Raven, I didn't mean to fall asleep on you!" he said, scrambling up.
"It's okay, Beast Boy, really. I was actually…kind of enjoying it. I'm glad I could help you feel better."
For the first time that night, he smiled. "Thanks Rae. I know you didn't have to listen to all that, but it means a lot to me that you did."
"Beast Boy, the most important thing to me is you…your well being. I'm just glad you talked to me."
Beast Boy hugged Raven, and, for the first time, she didn't throw him off of her. 'She looks so beautiful in the moonlight. When am I going to tell her that I like her? Her eyes are so pretty…'
"Raven, there's something I want to tell you," Beast Boy said as he took a deep breath, "RaeIknowthisiscomingfromnowherebutIreallyreallyli keyouandpleasedon'tkillme!"
Raven could barely comprehend what he was saying, but she caught enough to know he was saying he liked her. He looked at her nervously, and tensed up, afraid that she would throw him out the window.
"You really like me?" Raven asked, afraid she had heard wrong.
Beast Boy said nothing. He took her head in his hands and kissed her. He was afraid at first, but he soon forgot all about it as he felt Raven start to kiss back. It wasn't a very deep kiss, but it was very sincere. He respected her enough not to ask for more. He pulled away slowly, looking her in the eyes.
"I like you too, Gar." He started to protest at the use of his real name, but decided not to ruin the moment. They had talked all night; the sun was already rising.
"So, do you want some breakfast? Tofu, maybe?" Beast Boy said, wiggling his eyebrows.
Raven rolled her eyes. "Idiot," she muttered. When Beast Boy looked back at her, she had a teasing look in her eyes.
"Let's go!" he said, grabbing her by the hand and leading her into the kitchen. He started making tofu waffles while Raven made a cup of herbal tea.
"We could really freak them out, you know," Beast Boy said, jerking his thumb in the direction of the other Titans, watching TV on the couch.
Raven and Beast Boy walked into the Common Room. They were casually holding hands, and they sat down on the couch together. Beast Boy deeply kissed Raven, and she kissed him back without saying a word. The other Titans sat there, wide eyed and open-mouthed. Cyborg's distinct blue faded, while his system repeated, "System overload." Robin sat there, too shocked to say anything. Starfire sat there, blushing, not sure what was happening.
"Dudes, you should see the looks on your faces! You all look so ridiculous!" BB dropped to the floor, laughing. Raven had a slightly amused look on her face, which she quickly hid with her tea mug. The hum of Cyborg's electronics coming back to life seemed to jerk Robin and Starfire out of their trance.
"Yo, what was THAT!?" Cyborg said after coming back online.
"Oh yeah, me and Rae got together," Beast Boy said nonchalantly.
"I did not see that coming," Robin said, clearly still shocked.
"Neither did I," Raven said dryly and kissed Beast Boy again. He fist pumped in the air while he was kissing her.