Beast Boy woke to the sun shining in through his open window. A breeze from the sea brought in the scents of fall and the sounds of the tide churning. He knew that eventually it would be too cold to keep his window open at night and he hated that fact. Still, might as well enjoy the fresh air while he could. The changeling checked his alarm clock, 7:16 am, "Good." He said stretching. "Enough time for a quick wake-up flight before breakfast."
Swinging his legs over the side of the top level of his bunk bed, he dropped off and landed on the floor. Walking over to the screen-less window, he shifted into a cat and pounced on the ledge of the window and leapt out. He only fell for a few feet before shifting into a falcon and turned the fall into a dive. Unfurling his wings and pulling out of the dive before he hit the island, he let his mind wander as he flew around the tower.
It had been five years since he and the others had become the Teen Titans. Five very eventful years. He's been beaten, broken, fallen in love twice, betrayed, scared out of his mind, and mutated. But most importantly, he had found a family. The Doom Patrol was sort of family to him, considering he had been adopted by Steve and Rita, but he had never truly felt like he belonged.
Beast Boy shifted into a pterodactyl and started gliding down in a circle landing on the roof of the tower. The green dinosaur shifted into a green teen, who headed for the roof entrance. His time with the Titans had been good, up until two months ago. One night at their weekly karaoke night, he had changed his relationship with one of his fellow Titans forever. They had been together ever since, and now his life was great.
It had been slow, just like he knew it would, but Raven didn't lose control anymore when he kissed her. They hadn't had any make out sessions yet but he was still glad that he was able to be more physical towards her. The alarm went off from his communicator as he walked through the halls. He knew what it meant, but he checked just the same, 7:29am, "Right on time." He said with a smile, taking another flight of stairs three at a time. He emerged from the stairway into the hall leading to the Titan's sleeping chambers and made it to the door labeled 'Raven' right as it opened and the purple haired, pale skinned beauty he had fallen in love with walked into the hall.
"Good morning Gar." She said with a smile as he walked up and kissed her.
"Morning Beautiful. How did you sleep?" He pulled from their embrace and placed his hand in hers as they walked toward the common room.
"Same as usual. Nothing out of the ordinary. You?" She asked glancing at him.
"When I finally got to sleep I slept like a rock."
Raven grew a little concerned at that, "What kept you awake?"
"Missing you." He replied with a grin, bringing a blush to his girlfriend's face.
"You are a shameless flirt Garfield Logan." She said in an exasperated voice.
"Maybe, but I meant it." He gave her hand a squeeze as he said it.
Raven stopped them just short of the door to the common room and turned toward him. "I love you Gar." She said kissing him gently.
"I love you too Rae." He told her.
The pair entered the common room hand in hand and walked to the kitchen where they could hear their friends talking.
"I'm going to get some sleep Star. I will see you in a few hours." They could hear the conversation before they could see who was speaking, though they could identify Robin's voice easily.
"Very well. I will miss you Boyfriend Robin." Came Starfire's voice, "Sleep well."
Raven let go of Beast Boy's hand as they came into view of their friends, she still wasn't comfortable with showing affection around anyone but him. Cyborg was at the stove cooking, and no doubt trying to ignore the couple behind him. Robin had his back to them and was kissing Starfire. Starfire was the first to see them, "Good morning friends!" She said happily floating over to hug them both. "What a beautiful morning this is."
"Good morning Star." They both said, Beast Boy hugging her back.
Robin passed them with a yawn, "Good night all. See you in a few hours." He passed through the door before anyone could return a response.
Cyborg turned from the stove when he heard Starfire greet them. "Yo, BB, Rae, y'all want some waffles?"
"Yes please," Raven responded. "And my name is Raven, not Rae."
"When do I ever refuse waffles?" Beast Boy asked.
"Anyway," Cyborg said changing the subject. "Beast Boy, you should probably finish off that cake in the fridge or throw it away." Beast Boy, the youngest of the Titans West, had turned eighteen three days ago and the remainder of his birthday cake sat in the fridge. "I also took a message for you from a man named John Wolfman, some lawyer from New York."
"What would a lawyer from New York want with me?" Beast Boy asked curiously.
"Don't know." Cyborg responded, "But he did ask for Garfield Logan, not Beast Boy."
Both Starfire and Raven were alert now. "Dude!" Beast Boy yelled. "He called the Tower and asked for me by my civilian name?"
"Yeah." Cyborg responded. "I asked the guy if he knew where he had called and he told me that he did a lot of work with superheroes. I ran the guy through the JLA's system and he seems legit. I even ran the name by Robin. I guess he's worked with both Robin and Batman in the past." Cyborg was leaning back against the counter with his arms folded in front of him looking at Beast Boy. "He didn't say what he was calling about, just that he needed to talk to you. I took his number down so you could call him back." Cyborg gestured to the phone on the wall, below it on a table was a note pad they used for taking messages.
Raven watched Beast Boy carefully as he walked over to the message pad. She could feel dread and fear coming from him, so the empath decided to go talk to him. He stood staring at the phone as she walked over to him. "Are you okay?" she asked softly putting a hand on his shoulder.
"In my experience," he began softly, "lawyers aren't a good thing. I don't know what this guy wants, but it can't be good. I'm gonna go call him." He ripped the note out of the book and headed towards the dorms.
Raven watched him go sadly, it had been such a good morning, and now she couldn't help but feel that it was ruined. She pushed down the squirm in her stomach and went to eat with Cyborg and Starfire.
Beast Boy walked through his door and went over to his seldom used desk. Each of the Titans had phone lines in their room for private calls, but he couldn't remember the last time he had used his. He picked up his phone and dialed the number Cyborg had written down. The dial tone turned into a ring as the call attempted to go through.
A woman picked up the phone on the other end. "Good Morning, you have reached the law offices of Wolfman, Perez, and Winick, how may I help you this morning?"
"Uh, yeah," He said not really sure what to say. "I got a call from a John Wolfman. My name is Garfield Logan."
"Ah yes, Mr. Logan. Let me see if Mr. Wolfman is available, please hold." The soft sound of a piano came from the other end of the phone as the Receptionist put him on hold. When someone picked up the other end next, the a male voice said in a somber tone. "This is John Wolfman."
"Hi, Mr. Wolfman, this is Garfield Logan, you called for me earlier." Beast Boy said into the phone.
"Yes, Mr. Logan. I called because I have some bad news." Mr. Wolfman continued in a low tone. "There was an incident regarding your adoptive parents, Steve Dayton and Rita Farr. The details would best be discussed in person, but… There was an explosion off of the coast of Maine, The Doom Patrol was there. I'm sorry, but only Steve survived. He is in critical condition at Maine General Hospital…"
Beast Boy was struck speechless as the man on the other side continued speaking to deaf ears. The next few minutes were a blur for the green teen. His mind was on autopilot as he listened to the man on the other side give him a few more details, and saying that he would be going to Maine General Hospital to handle some legal paperwork for Steve, and how he hoped to see Beast Boy there.
Beast Boy gave a weak "Yeah" before hanging up the phone, and numbly leaving his room. Beast Boy felt empty, he walked through the tower not really knowing where he was going. A set of doors in front of him opened to reveal Raven looking at him with worry, behind her he could see the common room TV on with a news broadcast playing about the terrorist attack on a cruise liner.
Everything came rushing to him like a ton of bricks and he collapsed to his knees sobbing uncontrollably.
Cyborg dished out the waffles to his teammates and put a bottle of mustard and a bottle of syrup on the table. "Come on guys, eat up." He said with enthusiasm.
Starfire took a big whiff of the pancakes in front of her, "Mmm… Cyborg these smell amazing." She picked up the bottle of mustard and started pouring it over her pancakes.
Raven was still watching the door Beast Boy left from, there was something wrong, she just knew it. Cyborg turned on the TV with the remote, "Come on Raven, they are getting cold." Cyborg turned the channel to the morning news and dug into his waffles. Still worried about Beast Boy, Raven took her seat at the table and picked at her waffles.
A few minutes later Raven felt a spike of horror come from the dormitory, she could tell it was from Beast Boy. Before she could get up to go see him, the news broadcast caught her eye.
"A cruise liner was attacked late last night by the terrorist organization known as The Brotherhood of Evil. The ship was destroyed by a large explosion, but thanks to the quick work of the group known as The Doom Patrol, most of the passengers and crew survived. As of right now, 24 casualties have been discovered among debris. The Doom Patrol has not been seen since the..." Raven tuned out the broadcast and turned to the door. She needed to get to Beast Boy.
She ran to the door and found Beast Boy standing right in front of her. His face was twisted in disbelief and agony. When he saw her he dropped to his knees crying. Raven could hear Starfire and Cyborg behind her gasp and start talking, but she didn't hear what they said. She was too concerned with the green teen in front of her. She got down on her knees and pulled Beast Boy into a hug. He was shaking from the sobs that wracked his body.
Raven had no idea what to do. She had never been in this kind of a situation before. Of course she had comforted others, but this was different. She had never before held someone while they cried, let alone the man she loved. Beast Boys emotions were peaking and washing over her at dangerous levels as he cried into her shoulder, she wasn't sure how much longer she could keep her powers in check. She just hoped that whatever got broken could be fixed.
Cyborg watched the two, horribly shaken as he watched his best friend in the world completely lose it. Starfire looked over to the metal man, "I do not understand, does this have to do with the phone call?" she asked softly.
"I don't know Star," He replied in a hushed voice, "I just hope the call and the report aren't related." Starfire looked over at the TV again still showing the wreckage from the attack when she understood what Cyborg had meant.
"Yes," she whispered, "let us hope so."
The ceiling above Raven cracked with black magic, light bulbs bursting from her power. Before any glass could rain down on them she wrapped Beast Boy and herself in her power and took them out of the common room.
"I shall go awaken Robin; he will want to know what happened." Starfire said getting up and heading towards the door on foot, she wasn't sure she could fly right now.
Cyborg stood up too. "Star wait, what is happening? And what can Robin do about it?" He asked, "Let's just let him sleep until we know more." Cyborg walked over to the broom closet to get the vacuum cleaner to clean up the glass.
"Very well, I suppose there is nothing to be done for now." She said, walking to the large front window instead. "They are out at the shore. Raven's powers are still, I believe the term is 'going crazy'."
Cyborg nodded, "I had a feeling that was where she took them." Cyborg started up the vacuum as he spoke. Starfire just kept her eyes on her friends her arms hugged tight to her body. She never liked when her team mates were in pain, but she hated it more when there was nothing she could do.
Raven moved Beast Boy and herself out of the Tower as soon as she felt her powers slip. The only place that she could think of was out on the rocky coast, where they had shared their first kiss. The crying man in her arms didn't seem to be fazed by the transition, she wasn't even sure that he knew she had moved them. Little by little his crying died down, his emotions receded from her, and her powers fell under her control again. Even as he stopped shaking, he still didn't move from his perch leaning against her shoulder.
Raven was the first to speak. "Beast Boy?" she asked softly. After she got no answer she continued. "Will you tell me what happened?"
She could feel him shake his head 'No'. "Do you want me to just holding you?" She asked receiving a nod. "Would you like to go somewhere more comfortable?" He nodded again and she brought her powers over them and took them to her room, ending up on her floor. There was little light in her room due to the heavy purple curtains blocking her window. A black disc formed under them as she moved them to her bed, placing her back against the headboard and cradling his head against her chest. Had her mind not been otherwise occupied she would probably have had trouble with how intimate their position was, but now, there were more important things to worry about.
They laid there like that for the better part of an hour before Beast Boy finally spoke. "She's dead. My mother is dead, again." He said slowly.
She waited for him to continue, when he didn't she asked, "What happened?"
He tensed up a bit at the question, but he answered. "I don't know. All that lawyer told me was that there was an explosion, and the only survivor was Steve. He's in a coma in Maine. He is in a coma, Rae, and he may never wake up." He sobbed again and she felt a sharp spike of his sorrow pierce her.
Raven knew about his past, about his real parents. "I'm so sorry Gar. I'm so sorry." He sobbed a few more times before pushing himself up and away from her. He sat up on the edge of her bed, wiping the tears from his eyes.
"I'm sorry for losing it like that." He said weakly without looking at her. "I'm sorry I made you lose control." She could feel grief and regret running off of him.
Not really sure what to do, Raven moved herself over to sit next to him, folding her hands in her lap. "It's not your fault. I lose control sometimes, it can't be helped. I am here for you Gar; I want to help you get through this."
His hands clenched into fists, anger flooding off of him, pure bestial rage ran off of him in torrents. Raven hadn't felt anyone this angry in a long time. Not since the last time Robin was fighting Slade. "I am going to find them, Rae." His voice was little more than a growl now. "I am going to make them pay. Whoever did this, I will make them pay.
"Beast Boy," she started softly, "The news, well they seem to think the Brotherhood of Evil was behind the attack, but I don't know how," She was cut off by the angry boy.
"The Brotherhood? The fucking Brotherhood again. How the hell did they get out?" He was standing now, fists clenched at his side. He started walking toward the door, his hatred now matching his rage. A black shield stopped him from leaving, "Raven, let me out." He snarled turning back to her.
She had never seen that much rage, or pain in his eyes before, and never pointed at her. "No." he growled at her, she just stared him down. "Beast Boy, right now you are being irrational, you need to focus. I know you are in pain,"
He cut her off again. "What the hell do you know," he snarled again, "Last I checked your Father was a demon. How could you possibly know what this,"
This time she cut him off, raising her voice above his, "My father may have been a demon, but my mother was human, remember. I know what it feels like to lose a mother. I know what it feels like to feel helpless as death surrounds you. And I know what it feels like to be responsible for it all. I know what you are going through, even if our situations are different." Her voice died down to a whisper as his rage was subsiding. She could feel him calming down. "My mother is dead, along with all of the people of Azaroth. When Trigon escaped, that was his first target."
His rage was gone now and his eyes widened in horror. "Oh my god. Rae I'm so sorry, I don't know what came over me." Beast Boy fell to his knees again. "I completely lost control." The black force field vanished.
"That's just another one of the perks of dating me; I understand losing control. If you think I would ever hold that against you, you are crazier than Mad Mod." Her voice had returned to its normal monotone, but she still spoke softly kneeling in front of him. She placed her hand on his cheek, lifting his face to look at her, "I love you. That hasn't changed."
She could tell he still felt guilty, but he was relaxing again. "I love you too. Thanks for talking me down."
"You're welcome. Now, let's go talk to the others. They are probably worried about you."
Beast Boy's face fell again. "Yeah. And I need to talk to Robin about going to Maine for a little while."
"Yes, we, do. I won't let you do this alone." She said still looking him in the eye.
He gave her a weak smile, and she could feel his relief and love for her rise, "Thanks Rae."
Robin walked out of his room only an hour after going to lie down. Apparently sleep was not for him today. He knew he would be okay though, he had plenty of experience not sleeping. The hall was quiet as he walked back to the common room. It wasn't until he saw the damage to the ceiling by the door that he started to worry.
He walked into the common room to find Cyborg working quickly at the computer and heard someone bustling about in the kitchen. "Cyborg, what happened?" He asked, growing more concerned by his friend's stern face. He had no sooner finished his question, when he was practically tackled by Starfire flying out of the kitchen.
"Robin, something happened. I don't have all the details yet, but I think it has something to do with the Brotherhood of Evil." Cyborg said looking up at him.
"Oh Robin, it is terrible. Beast Boy was so sad, and there was nothing we could do," Starfire was talking a mile a minute and Robin was only catching a few words.
"Whoa, Starfire slow down. Start from the beginning." Starfire slowed down, and together she and Cyborg told him what had happened and what they had heard. By the end of it Robin was wearing a heavy scowl. "And the broadcast said that the Brotherhood of Evil was behind the attack?" He asked to clarify what he had heard.
"That is correct," Starfire said, "They also said that the Doom Patrol haven't been heard from since. Our friends Beast Boy and Raven have not returned from where they went. I do hope they are okay." Starfire said with worry.
"It'll be okay," Robin said gently, "So long as Raven is with him Beast Boy will be fine. Right now I am more worried about the rumor about the Brotherhood. They are supposed to be on ice still." Robin let go of Starfire and walked over to the computer. "Cyborg, can I use the computer? I need to make a call."
"Sure Rob. You need us to leave?" He asked while standing up.
"No, this is Titan business. If he can't handle that he can stick his head in an oven." Robin said with a low growl. Sitting down he brought up the communicator program and dialed in a number. A moment later, a face appeared on the screen, half covered by a black cowl with two pointed ears running straight up on either side of his head. This was Batman, Robin's mentor.
"What?" Batman asked gruffly.
"Have you seen the news? Rumor has it that the Brotherhood escaped. Have you heard anything?" Robin had expected this kind of a reception and he was prepared to deal with it. Starfire and Cyborg, who had both gathered behind the computer chair hoping to join in on the conversation, began to shift awkwardly under Batman's gaze.
"Don't worry about them. They are above your pay grade." Batman said shortly.
Cyborg kept quiet, even if he did want to rip Batman a new one, if he started yelling, it could ruin their only lead. Starfire was also angered by the Dark Knight's cutting remark, but kept silent.
The same could not be said for Robin. "Above my pay grade?" He growled out. "Are you forgetting the year we spent fighting them? Did you forget who captured them to begin with? You know something, I thought you might, but you just confirmed it. What is going on?" Robin's voice was raised and he had stood up, leaning over the desk and pushing back the wheeled chair.
Batman's eyes narrowed. "No, I have not forgotten that you bit off more than you could chew. The Justice League is still cleaning up the mess you kids have made." Robin was gritting his teeth and both Cyborg and Starfire were holding barely restrained anger. "You froze almost a hundred people you claimed were villains and terrorists and then handed them over to the U.N. to deal with. We have spent the last nine months in the courts trying to keep these people off the streets." Batman was speaking plainly and bluntly, but no emotion showed in his eyes or voice. "In the end, half of the people you froze were found not guilty and released, and the other half were unthawed and handed to other authorities."
"Say what?" Cyborg screamed.
"When did this happen?" Robin yelled at his mentor.
"They were sent free?" Starfire exclaimed outraged.
Batman glared at the three through the screen. "The U.N. made the decision a month ago."
"Why didn't you tell us?" Robin was so mad right now he was practically seeing red. "They came after us last time, what made you think that not knowing about all of this would be a good idea?"
"The Brotherhood was among those that were not released." Batman stated cooly. "They were moved to a U.N. metahuman prison to be held for a proper trial. They escaped a week ago. You were not told, because it was decided that the Doom Patrol would handle them. The League felt telling you would only cause you to go picking a fight you could not win." Batman's voice was hard as he delivered the League's decision.
"That wasn't your choice to make." Robin screamed. "We have members all over the world that could be sitting ducks right now because the Brotherhood has the element of surprise. Did it ever occur to you to tell me, despite what the League thought?"
"I stand by the League's decision. The Brotherhood made a big show of their attack, the League is putting every resource available to find and capture them." The Dark Knight's voice never wavered as he spoke to his old side kick.
"Well it's a good thing only thirty people had to die in order for you to feel obligated to help." Robin shot back, his voice filled with venom. "I'm not just your fucking sidekick anymore. You can't keep controlling me like this." He reached up and pulled off his mask. "As of right now, I am not Robin anymore. I don't need you looking over my shoulder." Robin threw the mask at the screen. "You'd better just hope your plans don't get any of MY Titans killed, or you are going to have hell to pay." He slammed his fist down on the disconnect button, leaving the screen black.
The others, who had kept quiet while their leader was arguing with Batman, were now staring at him shocked. Starfire was the first to speak. "Robin?" She asked carefully.
"Don't call me that." He barked. "Sorry, just, call me Dick for now." He turned to Starfire as he apologized. "I was serious; I refuse to go by Robin anymore. I have lived in that asshole's shadow for too long."
"Yo, man, I know that you are upset, but are you sure about that?" Cyborg asked cautiously.
"You heard him Cyborg. He knew. He has known for weeks, and he did nothing to let us, to let me, know. The League doesn't take us seriously. It's time for us to make them notice us. We are going after The Brotherhood again. I don't care what those arrogant pricks have to say, I'm not just going to sit here are wait for them to 'save the day'. We aren't helpless kids, we know what we are doing and we have proven it before, we will just prove it again."
"I agree Boyfriend Ro- Dick. When a warrior is wronged, the only thing they can do is to fight back." Starfire said her hands and eyes glowing with a green light.
Cyborg held his hand up in front of him, "I get that, I really do, but this is the League you are talking about. They don't want us going after the Brotherhood, Batman made that clear. Picking this fight could mean getting shut down."
"They can never shut us down." Dick said firmly. "Not as long as we don't let them. I won't make you do this Cyborg," he said calmly, "I won't try to force anyone to go against the Justice League. This is a fight every Titan has to decide to take on their own."
"Screw that." Cyborg said, "I'm in. I just needed to know you were serious about this. Couldn't have you ditching out at the last second." The metal man gave his friends a smile.
"Count us in too." Came a monotone voice from the common room doors. Raven and Beast Boy were standing in the doorway. Robin had never seen Beast Boy look so; the only word he could use to describe what he saw in him was focused. His hands were tightened into fists and his face seemed to be set in stone. Raven's hood was up so they couldn't see her face, but judging by her posture she was ready for a fight.
"How long have you been standing there?" He asked carefully.
"Long enough, Dick." Beast Boy said firmly. "I want these sons of bitches. I want them bad."
Starfire's face softened when she saw her friend, "Beast Boy, what had you so upset earlier?" She asked.
"The Doom Patrol is dead. All but Mento." The rest of the Titans stiffened, they all knew of his relationship with the legendary team of heroes. "And before you start," he said firmly," I don't want apologies or pity. If you want to help me, help me catch the Brotherhood."
"You know we will BB." Cyborg said walking up to his friend. Starfire and Dick joined them.
The five of them stood looking between each other, every one of them with firm determination written on their faces. "Titans," Dick said holding his hand out in front of him. One by one each of his team mates put their hand on top of his as their five voices rang as one, "Together."