Teen Titans Fan Fiction ❯ The Real World: Titans Tower ❯ Who I Am ( Chapter 21 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
DISCLAIMER: The New Teen Titans were created by Marv Wolfman and George Perez, and are owned by DC Comics.
“All Star Teen Titans”
“The Real World: Titans Tower”
Chapter 21: Who I Am
Robin—Dick Grayson: Arrogant former circus star, acrobat extraordinaire and hopeful ladies man.
Wonder Girl—Donna Troy: Adopted sister of Wonder Woman, bestowed with the powers of the Amazons.
Speed—Wally West: A bitter, living embodiment of the mythical Speed Force.
Cyborg—Victor Stone: Half flesh, half machine—all human.
Beast Boy—Garfield Logan: Goofy, insecure animal shapeshifter and former member of the Doom Patrol.
Raven: Cynical empath shrouded in mystery.
Starfire—Princess Koriand'r: Honest, caring newcomer to Earth capable of flight and generating energy blasts.
This is the true story of seven teenaged superheroes, picked to live in a house, fight crime together and have their lives taped, to find out what happens when heroes stop being polite, and start being real. The Real World: Titans Tower.
***ON THE AIR—NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK, USA***
Two boys stood atop a tall building, staring through a skylight at a room full of armed goons. The younger one, known only as Robin, the mysterious partner of the Batman, just looked at his friend, waiting for him to make his move. The older boy was also called Robin—he was Dick Grayson, an acrobat, detective in training, and a Teen Titan. In his hand were four explosive disks.
Robin: “Man, before I was a Titan I had the biggest crush on Wonder Girl. Posters all over my trailer and everything! Even after I joined the team it took me a while to get over it—didn't matter that she was a b----, cause she sure was a damn hot b----!
“But ever since I've been datin' Kory, it kinda went away. I got over it. But she's still my teammate, and hell, I guess my friend too, even if she'd never admit it. So yeah, I guess I'm not just doin' this so I can be a kick-ass detective, or for all brownie points I'll get—I'm doin' this cause Donna's my friend.”
Moving stealthily, Dick placed a disk at each corner of the skylight's foundation. Each time he turned back a band around the disk's perimeter—it was a timer, giving them less than a minute before they all ignited. “You ready?”
“Of course,” replied his young namesake as he opened a pocket in his utility belt and let a handful of tiny silver pellets fall into his palm.
Robin: “So anyway, the little guy figured out that Donna didn't know who her real parents were. So I'm not going into the reasons why again, but we're obviously on the case like I'd be on a hot honey. We dug up some info on the building Wonder Woman found baby Donna in, and saw a gang used to run outta it before it burnt down. Well, that gang's down in that room right now, so looks to me like it's time to beat some answers outta `em!”
Sure enough, the disks detonated right on schedule and sent shards of glass and chunks of concrete flying through the air. Before the mobsters could even react the silver pellets hit the floor and unleashed at least a dozen plumes of smoke, filling the room and completely eliminating visibility.
That wasn't a problem for the two Robins, however. With gas masks on, both boys leapt through the shattered hole, their capes flapping behind them.
Robin: “G—damn is this a f---ing rush, always has been, even when I was a kid on the trapeze with mom an' dad. But I dunno…lately it just hasn't been as fun. Yeah, I didn't try hard enough at first, but then I really pumped up my training, and it looked like it'd be enough—until Flamebird. If I'm gonna be a real hero I can't just be some lucky f--- up, I've gotta be serious. And if I've gotta be as dark as Batman to help my team, I'll do it!”
Batarangs and Redbirds soared from the boys' gloved hands with pinpoint accuracy, knocking most of their opponents' weapons right from their grip. The two Robins each landed atop a mobster's head, slamming their faces into the floor. Dick sprang backwards as soon as he touched ground, spinning into a somersault and sending several more disks flying from mid-air.
As the projectiles filled the room with explosions and icy shards, the acrobat landed on his hands and span into a full circle helicopter kick that scattered several goons easily.
His young counterpart, meanwhile, lashed out with a bolo, ensnaring one of the thugs within its tangled ropes. However, in the meantime he was rushed from behind, and quickly found himself caught within the brute's grip. The boy just grinned, however, as he expertly broke free from the submission hold and sent his elbow backwards into the older man's groin. As he howled in pain, Robin grabbed his arms and hurled him over his shoulder, using him to stop another mobster dead in his tracks.
Right beside him, Dick span through the air like he could fly as he delivered a roundhouse kick into his opponent's face. Before he could even land he lashed out with several precision strikes to pressure points that left the thug numb and on the floor, temporarily paralyzed.
And that was that—as the smoke cleared, the two Robins were just left to admire their handiwork. “Nice job,” smiled the younger crime fighter, “I haven't even really gotten the hang of pressure points yet!”
“Eh, not that hard,” shrugged Dick. “After your boss used `em on me I didn't rest till I figured `em out too.”
Robin: “After the way Batman made a fool outta me with `em, I just wanted to return the favor!”
“Anyway,” continued the Titan, “You leave one of these guys conscious to question? Cause I sure didn't!”
Grinning, his friend replied, “Of course,” and pointed towards the thug bound within the bolo.
“Sweet,” smiled Dick, “I think I got just the way to make `im crack…”
While still ensnared within the steel wires of the bolo, the one thug who had been left conscious now found his feet bound as well. This time, however, the wire came from Dick Grayson's grappling launcher, the other end tied tight around a gargoyle on the roof's edge, letting the mobster dangle helplessly.
As the blood rushed to his head he watched the two Robins peer down at him. Dick leaned over the roof's edge, staring down his captive intently. His young friend, however, was more interested in watching the detective-in-training and seeing what he would do next.
Robin: “Sweet, my first interrogation! This is so cool! Course, couldn't let everybody else see how excited I was—nope, I was cool as could be!”
“Alright,” growled Dick, “I have some questions, and you're gonna answer `em!”
His captive raised an eyebrow, then laughed out loud. “Why the hell would I do that, kid? We've all seen your show—we know you can't kill us!”
“Doesn't mean I can't make you hurt.” The Titan calmly pressed a red button on the side of the grappling launcher, and suddenly the thug found himself hurtling towards the ground at full speed.
Robin couldn't believe it. “Dick, what are you—”
“Calm down, little guy,” interrupted the older Robin, “I've got it all under control.”
Robin: “I mean, seriously, I wouldn't actually hurt the guy! I just needed to scare the answers outta him! I don't have some magic lasso or even a lie detector, so what else can I do but be bad cop?”
Dick pressed another button and the rope pulled taut, stopping the mobster's fall just centimeters from the ground. Slowly it retracted and again pulled him towards the two crime-fighters. “So,” asked the acrobat, “Ready to answer my questions yet?”
“Hell no,” growled the gangster—but both Robins could see that he was shaken, and covered in sweat.
“Fine,” shrugged Dick, “I can do this all night, y'know.” With a press of a button the criminal was again plummeting, and this time his scream echoed through the streets.
As he pulled his hostage up for a second time, Dick pulled out his young partner's computer and, turning it upside-down, showed it to the thug. “This address, know anything about it?”
Shaking, the thug still didn't want to say anything. He knew what his bosses did to squealers, no matter how minor the information.
Sighing slightly, Dick again moved to let him drop, but stopped as Robin suddenly intervened. “We know you guys used to operate out of that building,” said the young boy, not wanting to see even a criminal dropped again. “There's no point in keeping quiet.”
“Yeah!” added the older Robin, letting his true self shine through, if only for a second. “That building was destroyed in a fire thirteen years ago—what happened?!”
The thug's eyes grew big. “The fire? S---, that fire's a legend—everybody knows about it!”
Robin: “Except for us, apparently—figures.”
“Well? What happened?!”
“Hell, nobody knows for sure—I've heard a million different versions of the story. All I know for sure's that it involved a rival family, and that our leader and the other guys' boss both got killed cause of it!”
Frowning, Dick turned to the computer and typed in some information. “Alright, his story checks out—both the leader of this mob and of their biggest rival died that night. Looks like the rival boss had a wife—and I got her address!”
“Wow,” marveled the younger crime-fighter. “Great idea! Now that's how a detective thinks!”
“Hell yeah,” replied the older Robin with a cocky grin. “Now let's get going!”
“Wait!” cried the thug, still hanging precariously upside-down. “I answered your questions—help me!”
Not even pausing for a second, Dick replied, “Hey, I never said I'd let you up.”
Robin: “Now that's badass. Once word gets around `bout this, I shouldn't have any problem next time I gotta get some answers from somebody! Nobody wants to be left hangin' from a building!”
Despite the Titan's dismissal, however, the mobster suddenly found himself being pulled back onto the roof by the younger Robin. “Don't get too excited,” warned the Batman's partner, “The cops are already on their way.”
But the tiny detective wasn't worried about that thug or the cops. Leaving the criminal still bound, he took off after the Dick. That's who had Robin stressed. None of this was like him, and a grim and gritty Dick Grayson…it just wasn't right!
***OFF THE AIR—LOREN JUPITER'S OFFICE. SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, USA***
“What were you thinking?!”
Mr. Loren Jupiter, corrupt manager of the Teen Titans, was not happy—not one bit. His day had started out fine enough, having turned the untimely arrival of Deathstroke to his advantage, but quickly things went sour.
“I didn't ask you to make Wally stay on the team just for you to tell him and let him leave! No matter what Cyborg has in store for him, you need to make sure he stays!”
Across the darkened room floated one of the Titans, the dark empath known as Raven. For reasons unknown, she has been acting as Jupiter's mole within the group, but today her actions let him down.
“Speed had to be told,” insisted Raven. “I could feel that he had truly reached his breaking point this time—had I not revealed my manipulation to him, he would have left of his own accord anyway. This way, your viewers get a show out of it as well.
“If you truly wish for me to manipulate Speed further, however, I will do so. But be prepared—his frustrations will only boil within him even moreso than before. I cannot guarantee I will be able to control or even stop him after that.”
Frustrated, Jupiter countered, “Yes, yes, that doesn't sound good at all…but still, even though you lied about your motives, this could still lead back to me somehow—and that's the last thing I need!”
“Why?” asked Raven. “You told me yourself that it is time for your end stroke—by the time our plans would be uncovered, it would be far too late to do anything about it.”
Sighing, the fashion impaired director had to admit his dark cohort was right. “I suppose you're right—and even if they did find out, it's certainly nothing I'm not prepared for.”
Smiling, he span in his chair towards a computer keyboard and brought a profile to life on the screen. “Just like I've been preparing this whole time, just in case something like this would happen to Speed or any of the other Titans! If he really does leave, well, I've got a plan…”
***ON THE AIR—CYBORG'S LAB, TITANS TOWER***
A large area of Victor Stone's immense research lab had been converted into a Speed Force study center, consisting of a huge computer system attached to several screens and monitors, and, strangely enough, a treadmill.
Cyborg: “When I first met Wally, he reminded me a lot of me right after my accident. I was bitter, angry at everybody. I alienated all my friends and family, and it was a long, hard process to work it all out. I was hoping I could spare Wally all that and help him through losing his humanity, but turns out I was wrong.
“When I saw what Brother Blood put him through, I finally figured out that Wally just couldn't get used to his new body. He just wasn't gonna let himself! So instead, I teamed up with the Flash here, hopin' we could figure out how to get his body back for him.
“And I think we may have just figured it out.”
Cyborg and the Flash led Wally West, the bodiless specter of speed, into the little corner of the lab. As he took in what was going on around him, his head span. It had been a busy day…
Speed: “I can't believe this day—then again, it's no worse than anything else that's happened to me. It's the final straw, though! I'm tired of Raven screwing with my head, and I'm tired of nearly losing everything over and over again because of this stupid team!
“I was gonna run away again, like I always do…just run and run and run, until I wasn't angry anymore. But then, I don't know what I would've done. Run into the Speed Force, just stay there and die? Don't think I haven't thought about it, but before thinking about Aunt Iris would hold me back, or Fran, or Raven…but this time I almost just went for it.
“But this will be even better. If I could get my body back…it would be the best thing that's ever happened to me! Finally, I could be normal again, and I could leave these guys behind and maybe things would finally turn around for me! Of course…this is me we're talking about here. Something's gonna go wrong, so I can't get my hopes up.”
“So all this stuff is supposed to help me get my body back?” he asked incredulously. “How do you know my body's still even around?”
“We don't,” replied Vic Stone as he sat down in a seat attached to a large machine. “Actually, we're gonna find that out right now.”
Wally frowned. “So it's not a sure thing then? Do I even have a chance at all?”
“This is your only chance, Wally,” said Flash as he put his hand on his nephew's shoulder. “And I think it's going to work. See, as far as any of us have been able to tell, the Speed Force isn't a destructive energy—it's just a power source, a Valhalla beyond the speed of light that provides the momentum all objects need to move, and the super speed people like Impulse and I have. I don't think it destroyed your body at all—I think that when I pushed you, your mind and your body were separated, and your mind bonded with the Force itself. Your body may still be in there!”
However, even as the words left Barry Allen's mouth, he lowered his head and bit his lip. “Wally…I'm so sorry. Max Mercury has always thought that the Speed Force “chose” the people it was going to grant super speed to…and he may be right. It would explain why lightning was going to strike my lab twice, but if it is right…then what happened to you may really be my fault. I'm so sorry Wally…I only wanted to protect you, but I may have ended up costing you everything. But that's why I'm not going to stop now until things are fixed!”
The Titan frowned.
Speed: “Ever since the accident I've hated the Flash, because it was all his fault, and he wasn't doing anything to fix it! He's supposed to be the peoples' super-hero, the one everybody loves so much they make him a freaking museum, but he doesn't help me! Well now he's helping me…but I dunno what to think about it. People like him can't stand people hating them…so this could all just a way to make him feel less guilty or something.
“I wouldn't put it past him, and like I said, I'm not gonna get my hopes up. But, for once, I'd actually be happy if I was wrong here…”
“So let's get to fixin' it!” exclaimed Cyborg as he flicked switches, bringing to life enough lights to illuminate a large city. “Wally, you'll need to run on that treadmill. My machines'll collect the energy you create and hopefully allow us to take a look into the Speed Force itself through our instruments!”
Speed crossed his arms. “That place's enormous, though. How do you expect to find my body floating around in such a big place?”
A grin formed on the half-robot's face. “Already got it covered! We're also gonna be trackin' your thought patterns, and usin' them as our guide, we should be able to hone in on your body easily!”
“Fine,” grunted the speed specter as he stepped onto the treadmill and put on the thought pattern tracking helmet. “I guess you've got all this stupid science stuff down-pat. So, I just run?”
“Yup,” said Vic, “Just run as fast as you can!”
Cyborg: “Damn, even now he's still bitter! I wish I'dve had more time. Flash an' me never got a chance to test all this gear, and now we're bettin' Wally's future on it. If it fails, he's gonna explode on us! Please gear, don't let me down now…”
With nothing left to lose, Wally West ran. It took all his resolve to keep his shell-like body of compressed Speed Force energy together as he grew faster and faster, threatening to merge with the very force that granted him his power.
“It's working!” exclaimed both Cyborg and the Flash as golden power appeared on every screen.
`It really is!' thought Wally, amazed. Finally convinced that this crazy plan might actually succeed, he focused, setting his thoughts solely on his former appearance.
And sure enough, a few moments later, something showed up on the radars. It was a body, floating limply by itself in the endless golden field of speed energy. He was a teenage boy, tall and skinny, wearing jeans and a hockey jersey with red hair just long enough for a few bands to fall over his face.
“My body!” exclaimed Speed. His joy overtaking him, he lost all inhibition as he exploded to his top speed. His power filled the room like lightning striking as he entered the Speed Force—but not everybody was happy about this.
The Flash's eyes grew wide as he suddenly took off. “Wally, WAIT!”
***NEW YORK CITY ROOFTOPS***
The two Robins bounded from rooftop to rooftop, fearless as they transversed the gaps between the buildings without even looking down. While the distance they had to travel was too short to bother firing up the Batwing, it was still quite a lengthy trip by foot.
However, the younger Robin didn't mind at all. He had something on his mind anyway, a point he wanted to make, so he figured this was the perfect time to take action. “So, Dick, why did you become Robin anyway?”
Robin: “Heh, it's kinda funny, I've asked the kid a billion questions about him and he's never answered, but now he's got one for me?”
Dick just chuckled, though, as he answered, “Isn't it obvious, kid? For the girls! For the fame an' attention an' the girls!”
His young friend just frowned, and as they landed on another rooftop he continued, “Yeah, I know you well enough to know that really is part of the reason, but I also know you well enough to realize that there's more to it. C'mon dude, be honest.”
The acrobat just rolled his eyes, but he liked talking about himself enough that he wasn't just going to let the question lay. “Fine, yeah, there is more. It's really fun, too. I'm a circus kid, I love all the thrills of it, but…aw hell, why not? But deep down, kid, the reason why I really joined the Titans and haven't just become the hottest stunt-man ever or something? It's got to do with my parents.
“They died when I was younger than even you. Their trapeze line was cut—I saw them fall as I stood up at the other side of the rope, helpless to do anything but f---ing stare at them as they died. I knew who did it too. I heard this motherf---er of a mobster, some dick named Tony Zucco, pressin' the circus owner for `insurance' money. When he refused to pay, Zucco decided to make an example of my folks.
“I told the cops but the useless clods couldn't do nothin' about it—Zucco was long gone, like he just disappeared. But I wasn't gonna stand for that, not when the f---er killed my parents. I struck out on my own, I tracked Zucco down, and…and…”
“And he beat the s--- outta me,” laughed Dick. “I'dve been dead if not for your boss swoopin' outta nowhere at the last second!”
The younger Robin's eyes nearly bulged out of his head—he'd never heard about this! “Wait, Batman was there?!”
“Yeah,” replied the Titan, “and he scared the hell outta me—but, he saved my life at the same time. He made sure Zucco got what he deserved. After that this rich guy named Bruce Wayne tried to adopt me, but I had other plans. I wanted to travel `round the world with the circus and train, pick up all the skills I could, cause…well…Batman had inspired me.
“I felt as helpless as a g--damn baby against Zucco—but Batman beat him up in, like, two seconds flat. I wanted to be like that, be able to save people and help out and beat the s--- outta guys like Zucco.”
Robin: “'Course, I wanted to do it my own way—to not be as dark and depressing as Batman was. Even after I screwed up fightin' Light I still thought I could do it, but after fightin' with Flamebird, I pretty much realized it wasn't gonna work. But `stead of givin' up, I just decided to do whatever it took, even if it meant bein' like Batman—cause I still wanted to help people!”
The small Robin let himself smirk, if even for just a second. Unlike Dick, he knew that Bruce Wayne and Batman were the same person, and that if Dick had been adopted by him that his life—and quite likely his crime-fighting career—would have been much different.
Still, he hadn't said everything he'd wanted to say yet. “So,” asked the young detective, “Wanna hear why I became Robin?”
“F--- yes!” replied Dick without a second's hesitation.
Robin: “I mean, I think the whole dark and mysterious thing is as cool as the next guy, but it's about time he answered one of my questions!”
So the boy began his story. “Like every other kid in Gotham, I idolized Batman—though probably not for the same reasons as the rest of them. All my friends at school just wanted to see him whale on people, but I liked that he was a master detective!
“See, I've always been fascinated with detectives and mysteries—I've read everything about them I could get my hands on, from kids stuff like Nate the Great and Encyclopedia Brown to the classics, like Agatha Christie's books and Sherlock Holmes. But, here was a real, live master detective roaming the city every night, solving case after case, and I thought it was the coolest thing ever!
“So I made a game of it, tracking his cases and following all the clues, and eventually I did it: I figured out who Batman really was!”
Raising an eyebrow, Dick interjected, “So, are you gonna tell me how, or who he is?!”
The smaller Robin just snickered. “Yeah, I'm just gonna tell you that while you're on camera. I'm not a moron!”
Robin: “Aw. Well, it was worth a shot…”
Batman's partner took on a more somber tone as he continued with his story. “I wasn't going to do anything with the information at first—I mean, it was just cool enough to figure out who he was! But I was still tracking Batman's cases, and what I started to see kinda scared me. He was getting more brutal with his victims, and apparently more reckless too, since more and more reports of his injuries came in. I was afraid he would snap or something—and I can't imagine losing anybody that dangerous to the Dark Side!
“That was around the time I first saw your show, and you. You really surprised me, Dick—you had as much potential as Batman, maybe even more, yet you hadn't lost yourself to sorrow! You could do what he did, but still be fun and approachable! You could do it without being a danger to yourself or anybody else!”
Robin: “Or at least, I used to be like that, back when I still thought it'd work. Hell, I think I know where the kid's goin' with this…”
“I decided that what Batman needed in his life, to save his morality, was someone like you: a Robin to counter his darkness, to be his tether to humanity!”
Smiling proudly, the young Robin bragged, “So I tracked him down, and with enough persistence, that's exactly what I became!”
Robin: “S---, I was right. This whole thing, all these stories, he's tryin' to make a point about me with `em! Don't think he counted on me catchin' on so quick though—but why wouldn't I? I'm almost as good've a detective as him now!”
“That's a pretty cool thing to pull off,” replied Dick as they both fired grappling lines and soared onto a higher rooftop, “But I get what you're drivin' at, and this stuff's not as simple as you make it sound!”
“How so?” asked his namesake, almost sounding like he was issuing a challenge.
Frustrated, the older Robin replied, “'Cause it just is! I'm a fun lovin' guy, but I just can't be that guy while we're in battle! I'm not gonna drag this team down like Flamebird did hers! I'm already behind the others `cause I don't have any powers, so now I've gotta work twice as f---ing hard as they do just to be useful!”
“But it's not just about your powers!” insisted the young detective. “You're important to the Titans for a lot of reasons! You keep them honest, tell them everything like it is, plus now you've got detective skills too!”
“Bein' honest ain't gonna do jacks--- against someone like Brother Blood or Deathstroke! And yeah, I'm a much better detective now, but that's because I've been spending so much time training with you!”
The smaller Robin sighed. “But you don't need to shut everybody out to do it! Why not have Kory train with us too? I liked it when she sat in on my acrobat lessons!”
Robin: “I did too, but as much as I like Kory, sometimes her bein' that hot was just distracting! I dunno…I've just wanted to focus on putting everything I have into my training and not letting myself get distracted. Maybe I am hurting some feelings `cause of it, but me being the best is too important to let that stop me!”
“Why are you even getting on me about this?” snarled Dick. “You say you're inspired by me, but you're pretty damn dark and mysterious yourself, and last time I saw him, Batman was still a f---ing dick!”
“Batman has more issues than you can imagine, but despite what you may think he's really softened up since I've met him—I think I'm helping, even if it's taking a while! Besides, say what you will about him, but he hasn't dropped any criminals from a building lately!”
Dick winced and turned away from his young friend, but the boy wasn't done yet, whether Dick wanted to hear it or not.
“And as for me, I'm trying my best, but I'm not the same as you! I think I do a good job of not going over the edge, but I'm just not as outgoing and friendly as you are! It's hard for me, but I do it anyway—but it comes naturally to you, yet you're ignoring it and trying to be a jerk instead!”
Grumbling, the Titan's lip quivered slightly as he insisted, “I'm not trying to be a jerk! I just want to do everything I can, to give my all to being a hero—and if that means I act like a jerk sometimes, well, then I'll f---ing do it!”
The younger Robin frowned, and was ready to offer a rebuttal, but that was when the computer he had given his older counterpart started buzzing in the acrobat's hand. “We're here,” he said with the slight hint of a smile as he peered over the building's edge.
Robin: “S---, with everything goin' on I'd almost forgot about findin' Donna's parents!”
“So that's it?” Dick's namesake wasn't satisfied with the sudden change in topic. “We're just going to stop talking about it?”
“Yes,” growled Dick as he sized up the house below. The mobster's widow's home was grand, and had guards on each side—apparently she received lifetime protection.
“It's a long trip home, you know,” remarked Robin as he crossed his arms. His older partner, however, was simply busy formulating a plan—which didn't amount to more than his usual “knock the threat the hell out” strategy.
Leaping from the rooftop, he just commanded, “Take the guard out back!”
Robin: “I didn't mean to piss the kid off, but I was just done talkin'. I said everything I wanted to say, and now, it was mystery solvin' time!”
He leapt into the air, tossing a disk in mid-somersault. It struck the ground immediately in front of the unsuspecting guard, who was temporarily blinded by the flash of white light that burst from within the projectile. Only a moment later Robin was on top of him, landing five consecutive strikes before even hitting the ground. By the time he landed his hands had gripped onto the guards shoulders, and he sent the goon flying over his head and into the nearby hedges.
Next the Titan threw an explosives packed disk into the front door, blowing the doorknob and lock from the rest of the structure. Leaping through the now open entrance, he was immediately met by both barrels of a double-barrel shotgun.
Robin: “S---, this is the first time this's happened that it wasn't some mad dad holdin' a gun to me for takin' out his daughter!”
Considering his nearly super-human reflexes and his experience with the situation, it was no surprise that Dick Grayson easily dodged the shotgun's blast, ducking beneath the bullet spray and leaving only the very end of his cape to be shredded as he opened his utility belt and lashed out with a Redbird boomerang that sent the gun flying across the room.
With the threat past, Robin could now see that the wielder of the shotgun was an older woman, maybe in her mid-forties, though it looked like the stress of her lifestyle and the loss of her husband had taken its toll. Still, she also looked tough—definitely the widow of a gangster.
“What do you want?!” barked the woman, her anger at this intrusion outweighing her fear for the moment.
“Answers,” growled back Dick as he pulled out his handheld computer. “This fire, I'm told you have connections to it. I need to know everything you know about it!”
The woman's face finally let a trace of shock through at the mention of the fire, even if just for a second. “If you think you can just burst in here and start bossing me around, you got another thing coming!”
Robin: “Great! How'm I supposed to make her talk?! Even I feel bad `bout beatin' up an old lady!”
“Please, ma'am.” Suddenly the smaller Robin appeared from the other side of the room, never making a sound until the petition left his mouth. “Please, we're not here to cause you any trouble. I already know you're Emily Montoni, wife of the late mob boss Salvador Montoni, and that his death thirteen years ago was somehow related to the fire my partner was asking about.”
Mrs. Montoni frowned, not happy with these painful memories being dredged up, but the tiny detective continued anyway. “I'm sorry to have to be asking you about this under these circumstances,” he acknowledged, “But a friend of ours thinks she's a survivor of the fire, and we're just trying to help her find her roots. Please, help us.”
Robin: “Okay, so either Batman was expectin' me to teach the kid how to grill people too, or this just might actually work…”
Emily Montoni gasped like the breath was knocked out of her, and across her eyes flashed a small spark of hope. “Of—of course. I'll help you any way I can…”
Dick nearly gasped himself—he definitely hadn't expected her to talk!
“That building was a hidden drug storehouse for the Silvestro family,” she began, “And at the time they were feuding over territory with my husband and his men. After a particularly heated confrontation, Silvestro's men retaliated by breaking into our home and kidnapping my daughter! They held her in that building as a bargaining chip, trying to get Sal to hand over his turf—but my Sal always was stubborn as a mule. He refused, and since the building was slated for demolition anyway, Silvestro's men torched it! My daughter was burnt alive!”
Both Robins were speechless, yet the mafia widow's story wasn't yet done. “My husband never thought they'd actually go through with it,” continued Emily between sobs, “So when they did, he wanted revenge! He took on the Silvestro family himself, and in the end their boss and my Sal ended up killing each other! I lost my husband and my daughter on the same day!”
Robin: “S--- that's a rough story, but I still can't get over her daughter bein' there…hm, I wonder…”
Dick's namesake was on the same page. “Your daughter…what was her name?”
Mrs. Montoni pulled a heart shaped locket from the inside of her shirt and opened it, revealing a photo of a bright eyed little girl with black hair pulled back into a ponytail. “Donna,” sobbed the woman, “Her name was Donna!”
Robin: “And that seals it! I'd recognize Donna anywhere, any age, but even more than that is something I read in Donna's diary when the little guy showed it to me—the Amazons called her Donna cause the name was sewed in all her clothes! Donna was always her real name, and there's no way this lady's any other Donna's mom but Donna Troy's!”
As the revelation sank into the Robin's heads, though, Emily sank further into grief. “I didn't know about Sal's…career when I married him, but once I found out I couldn't object, not after the life it'd bought me. My selfishness cost me my husband and my daughter!” Her make-up smeared down her face, carried away with her tears, as she looked up and made eye contact with the two crime fighters. “Your friend, is it…is she my Donna? Please, tell me she is!”
Dick could see his partner getting ready to answer her, and quickly beat him to the punch. “We're not sure,” he said as he abruptly turned for the door. “We'll let you know if we find out anything.”
Stunned, the young Robin added, “I promise we'll get back to you as soon as we can—and I'll make sure you're paid back for all the damage we've caused.” As he walked through the door, he looked back and honestly said, “I'm sorry.”
By the time he caught up to Dick the acrobat was already back on the rooftop next door—Robin greeted him by tackling him to the ground.
“What the hell's wrong with you?!” exclaimed the young detective. “That woman's been in pain for thirteen years and you can't tell her that her daughter's really alive?!”
Dick pushed the boy off him and climbed to his feet. “I have a good reason.”
“What? What could this good reason possibly be?!”
“I didn't tell Mrs. Montoni we found her daughter,” replied Dick, “Because I don't think I'm gonna tell Donna we found her mother.”
***TITANS TOWER—CYBORG'S LAB***
Screaming at the top of his lungs, the Flash zoomed onto the treadmill where his nephew had stood only a micro-second before. The device never even slowed down as Barry Allen took up where Wally had left off, running with all his might.
Cyborg: “At first I didn't get the problem, but then it hit me! If Wally somehow merged back with his body, he might still be stuck in the Speed Force! Damn that kid never thinkin' before he acts…but at that point I couldn't blame him, not as excited as he must've been. I just hoped the Flash could save him,' cause I sure knew I couldn't!”
As Flash ran he began to vibrate his molecules at different speeds, hoping to match the unique frequency Wally ran at—and as he finally met his goal he ran even faster, threatening to blow the treadmill to shreds as light started to stretch and distort around him. He had latched onto the path Speed had created, and was following him straight into the Speed Force!
Barry Allen had been there once before, outrunning a menace that had threatened to destroy his whole world. He almost didn't make it back—and he didn't know if he could do it again. But for his nephew, he'd take that risk.
With a boom he entered the Speed Force, a nearly indescribable world of pure momentum and blinding energy. He was only a few steps behind Speed—though what he was running on he would never know, as there was no ground anywhere in sight.
“Yes!” cried Wally as the mass of energy his mind had merged to struck his body, sending it flailing like it had been hit by lightning. As the energy dispersed, however, he showed signs of life. His green eyes opened, and the boy marveled as he moved his hands and feet. Never before had something so simple seemed so amazing, especially to him.
Not even a second later he had been swept into the arms of the Flash, who was still running as fast as he could.
Speed: “I couldn't believe it was real, that I was back in my body, but it was definitely all real! But, there was still one problem…I was so eager to get back to being myself I never even thought about how I was gonna get out of the Speed Force!
“Fortunately, the Flash was there. The Flash saved me—and got me my body back! I guess…I guess I misjudged him. Hell, I bet I misjudged a lot of people. Without my body I felt like another person entirely, and now, well, now I just hope I can think a little clearer.
“But now, looks like I've got the rest of my life to figure it out!”
As Barry Allen ran, he focused his thoughts. Last time he had escaped the Speed Force he did it by thinking about the love of his life, his Iris. He discovered the Force couldn't take someone if they still had regrets and still had a full life to live. Iris was his tether—and today, so was the life of the boy in his arms.
After all, he'd let Wally down when the accident happened in the first place. There was no way he could do it again. And with tethers as strong as those, there was no way he wasn't going to make it back.
The treadmill exploded as lightning-like energy filled the room and Flash collapsed to his knees.
Cyborg, however, couldn't see any of it through the smoke. “Flash, Wally, that you? You guys okay?”
As he drew closer to the two, he nearly panicked—until both looked at him and smiled. “I'm a little tired,” admitted Barry, “But I'm fine, don't worry about me.”
“And I'm…great!” exclaimed Wally as he rose to his feet, staring at his hands. “Finally, everything's amazing!”
Speed: “I could feel the floor and the fabric of my jersey, and I could smell the oil from all of Vic's machines. God, I'd missed that. It's like I'd regained a whole world of simple stuff that made all the difference!”
A few minutes later the door to Victor Stone's lab opened. Waiting eagerly outside were the Titans Starfire and Beast Boy, as well as their guests, Sarah Simms, Matt Logan, and Wally's aunt—and Barry's wife, though none of the Titans knew of his secret identity—Iris Allen.
Their hearts fluttered with anticipation as through the doors walked three figures—Cyborg, the Flash, and one they didn't recognize at first, a teenaged boy with red hair and the biggest smile they'd ever seen.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” announced Vic, his smile nearly rivaling the boy's, “I present to you, for the first time, the real Wally West!”
“Wally, it is you!” In the blink of an eye Starfire had shot across the room and latched herself to his body. “I am so happy for you! Congratulations!”
“Thanks Kory, really,” said Wally, truly meaning it despite his wincing, “But do you think you could stop now? I actually have bones you can break now!”
Blushing, Koriand'r let him go. “Oh, of course.”
“Dude, congrats,” laughed Gar Logan as he gave his teammate a high five. “What about your powers, though? Still got em?”
As a demonstration, Wally waved his arm—it didn't blur or anything. “Nope, I think they were just a part of the `no body' package—but who cares, right? I'd trade those powers for my body any day!”
Beast Boy: “Hey, not having a body is one thing, but super speed's pretty awesome! It's too bad he couldn't hang onto `em…”
Sarah, meanwhile, pulled her boyfriend down for a kiss. “Great job, Vic. I'm proud of you.” The metal man blushed.
Cyborg: “Hey, I just felt good that I finally really helped somebody out. The smile on Wally's face…damn, that almost makes it worth taking all of his griping all this time.”
“Okay guys,” interjected Matt Logan—loudly, as usual, “I don't think I understand everything that's goin' on here, but I sure as hell know that this is a once-in-a-lifetime paaaar-tay moment! C'mon, who's with me?!”
“I sure am!” exclaimed Wally, much to everybody's surprise.
Speed: “Hey, I don't think I've ever had a party in my honor before anyway—and I've never had a reason to celebrate like this either! No way was I turning it down!”
But as the others went upstairs to begin the party and the crowd thinned, soon only Wally, Flash, and Iris were left in the lab. “Flash,” Wally began, starting to choke up, “I—I'm sorry, for all the s---ty things I said about you. You really came through in the end. Thanks.”
“No problem, Wally,” replied the scarlet speedster with a wink. “Think nothing of it, really.”
“And Aunt Iris…” Words could barely express what either of them were feeling—Wally simply fell into her arms and hugged her as tight as he could. “Thank you for never giving up on me.”
“I could never do that,” sobbed Iris. “I'm just so glad you're happy!”
Speed: “Me too, me too…this, I think this all makes the whole Teen Titans thing worthwhile—and considering what I've gone through here, that's pretty amazing!”
***A LITTLE WHLE LATER—OUTSIDE TITANS TOWER***
The tranquil water that surrounded Titans Island was suddenly disturbed, rippling in circles around one point, the spot where the Batwing was slowly descending, in preparation to land. The jet stopped, hovering only a foot or two above the water's surface—normally Robin would have had it in stealth mode by this point, but today the young detective wasn't planning on staying long anyway.
The cockpit slid back and out crawled Dick Grayson, leaping from the vehicle's wing to the small island's sandy shore. Still in the Batwing, his namesake leaned out and asked, “So, you're really not going to tell Donna?”
Robin: “We didn't talk much on the way back from New York—I guess the kid was finally tired of bugging me—but I sure as hell told him why I wasn't tellin' Donna! Either he's got a memory problem…or he still just don't agree.”
“C'mon kid,” sighed Dick, “You know what she's like! Donna's little miss self-righteous superhero! If she found out her parents were criminals she'd freak! It'd bust her little world like a balloon! I can't do that to her!”
“Maybe…but she'll find out anyway,” retorted Robin. “And she'll be twice as pissed when she finds out you kept it from her!” Dick's only `reply' was a blank stare, so the young vigilante just sighed, “Whatever,” and moved to close the cockpit.
“Wait!” cried the acrobat, taking his partner by surprise. “When'll ya be swingin' by again?”
Gripping the steering wheel tight and staring straight ahead—avoiding all eye contact with Dick—he swallowed a lump in his throat as he replied, “I won't be. You passed your detectives lessons today, so there's no reason for me to come back anymore.”
Dick recoiled like he had been sucker punched in the stomach. “C'mon little guy, you…you can't be serious! I considered you, like, like the little brother I never had or somethin'! You can't just never come back—I know you and me had fun!”
“We did,” replied the Batman's partner solemnly. “I considered you like the big brother I never had too. But, you're not that guy anymore—and you're certainly not the Robin I modeled myself after anymore either! If that guy ever comes back give me a call…but until then, I'm outta here.”
Then the Batwing's cockpit slid shut and the jet ascended high into the sky. Dick Grayson just watched, looking up sadly with his cape billowing behind him as a friend flew out of his life.
Robin: “S---, I knew we fought half the day, but I didn't think the kid was that upset! Really surprised me he'd just take off like that…as much as I know it's helpin' me fight crime, all this dark and mysterious stuff really sucks for the rest of my life!”
As much as Dick was surprised by his friend's sudden departure, though, he was even more shocked by what he saw as the Tower's elevator doors opened and he caught sight of the living room: a party! His teammates, their friends, even the Flash was there, and even the Disco Ball Dick had installed was running!
Robin: “Hell, and I woulda bet money that Vic took that thing down as soon as he found out about it!”
“Woah,” exclaimed the acrobat, “What's goin' on here?! You're having a party without me?!”
“Toldja we shoulda waited for him,” grunted Matt Logan—by the time he'd spoken the words Koriand'r was halfway across the room, nearly smothering her boyfriend in a bear-hug.
“Dick!” exclaimed the Tamaranian, “I am overjoyed that you are safe!”
“But where were you?!” asked Cyborg, casting Robin stern looks over his crossed arms. “We tried calling you but you never picked up!”
Sheepishly, Robin replied, “Sorry `bout that. I was in NYC with the little Robin, takin' my final detective test, and I didn't want any interruptions!” Grinning, he added, “Of course, I passed with flyin' colors.”
Met only with the dubious stares of his teammates, and remembering the disco ball spinning above him, Robin finally asked, “What the hell happened here today anyway? We must be celebratin' for some reason!”
Beast Boy: “What happened here?! Man, if he only knew what a loaded question that was!”
“We're celebrating because a certain somebody got his body back!” Suddenly Dick was smacked on the back by a red-headed kid in a hockey jersey—he certainly didn't know who this guy was! “Guess who?!”
The acrobat just looked confused. “Body back? Wha…no way! Wally, that's you?! Holy s--- man, congrats!”
Speed: “Wow, even Dick seems genuinely happy for me! Definitely wasn't expecting that. Hell, everybody's being great to me…heh, it's about time.”
“So Wally, have you thought about what you're going to do now?” Suddenly the Flash was the one asking questions. “I mean, without your powers, you can't exactly be a Titan…”
“Of course he can!” interjected Starfire angrily. “He is our friend, and he belongs here as much as any of us!”
Wally West raised an eyebrow. “Wait, seriously? You want me to stay?”
“Yeah man.” This time it was Cyborg who spoke up. “You've earned the right to stay here as much as any of us have.”
Cyborg: “Plus, I think it would be good for him to have a chance to see us with this new perspective he's got!”
The former speedster just wasn't sure, though. “I dunno,” he mused as he scratched his chin. “It could be pretty cool, but…”
Speed: “I was kinda looking forward to living the rest of that normal life I've always wanted. Some people just aren't cut out for this super hero business, and I don't think I was one of those people even when I had powers.”
Suddenly a chill swept through the room as Raven appeared, the dark empath emerging from the black folds of her cloak. All were silent as she quickly scanned the room and its party-like state. “I thought I sensed an unusual amount of excitement here,” she said—then she caught sight of Wally.
“Speed, I am…pleased to see that you have regained your body. Congratulations.”
Raven: “Despite what any of you think of me, I was being truthful—I was pleased to see him recovered and happy. After all, that was the point of my manipulation all along.”
“Like hell you are!” growled Wally, his teeth gritting and his eyebrows arching almost into a `V'. “Leave me alone!” Turning away from his teammates, the boy walked towards the elevator door. “I'm sorry guys, but there's no way I can stay here, not with her around!”
Speed: “Kory's offer was pretty cool, if only because I couldn't believe all of them really wanted me to stay here—but I can't, not with Raven here! I was just beginning to forget her, to let her be replaced with my new happiness, then poof, she pops back in to make my life miserable! Well, that's it! I'm never gonna let it happen again!”
Robin: “Wait, what's the druggie's beef with Raven? When did this happen?!”
The alien princess's heart dropped. “But…where will you go?”
Starfire: “I will not allow my friend to live on the streets!”
“With me, hopefully.” Every head in the room turned to Iris West-Allen, Wally's devoted aunt. Sharing a quick, knowing glance with her husband, she continued, “Listen kiddo, I know you have problems with your parents. So, your uncle and I would love to have you for as long as you'd like to stay.”
Wally's eyes lit up. “Really?!”
Suddenly he was in her arms, hugging her nearly as tight as Starfire had him. “Aunt Iris, you're the best!”
Starfire: “I am sad that Wally will not give us another chance, but if he is this happy then I will be happy for him too!”
“Well, I guess you two are going to need a ride home.” Suddenly the Flash was between the two. “I don't think Keystone's too far out of my way,” added the super-hero with a laugh. “Anybody else want a ride on the Flash express?”
“Actually, I do,” said Sarah Simms, standing on her toes as she kissed her boyfriend goodbye before dashing to the scarlet speedster. “It's a school night, after all.”
“And yeah, I better get back `fore my roomies finish all those kegs I bought!” exclaimed Matt. “Peace out, guys!”
As the group walked into the elevator, Barry Allen laughed. “I have to bring all of you home? Wow, good thing I'm the fastest man alive!”
Speed: “It's kinda sad, leaving them all behind—but I'm ready to move on. It's time for my new life to begin! Now I can really be Wally West again!”
“Amazing,” said Raven. “After all his bluffing I never thought Speed would truly leave the team.”
“How can you be surprised?!” snarled Kory. “It is all your fault!”
Starfire: “While I may consider Raven my friend, she still did a horrible thing to Wally! As soon as I get a chance, I am going to really find out why!”
“Woah, ladies, ladies!” Suddenly Robin stepped between the two Titans, holding both of their tempers at bay. “Not that I don't appreciate a good catfight as much as the next guy, but can we at least hold it off `til somebody tells me what the hell is going on?!”
Gar snickered. “You want to know what happened today? Dude, I hope you're ready for a long story.” Collapsing into a chair, he sighed, “The stuff with Wally and Raven's only, like, fifteen percent of it!”
With that, the four Titans proceeded to fill in Dick Grayson on the day's many morbid events, from Deathstroke and his family and their plots of revenge to the untimely demise of Terry Long and the subsequent shattering of Donna Troy's life up to Raven's manipulation of Wally's mind.
By the time the tale was told, Dick had only one thing to say: “Holy f---ing s---!”
Robin: “That's…that's just f---ing awful! G—damn, I can't believe I wasn't there to help them! Great, I thought I was doin' a good deed today, and now I just feel like s---!”
“I have to go see her!” exclaimed Dick as he stormed towards the elevator.
“Dude, worst idea ever!” cried Beast Boy. “Trust me, when she said she wanted to be left alone, she meant it!”
But Robin paid the boy no attention.
Robin: “There's no way I can tell Donna `bout her parents, not now…but I still wasn't there to help! I have to say something!”
***OUTSIDE WONDER GIRL'S ROOM***
Robin stood nervously outside Wonder Girl's door, pondering over just what to say before finally just thinking, `To hell with it,' and knocking on the door anyway.
“I thought I told all of you I wanted to be left alone?!” roared Donna's voice from the other side.
Swallowing the ever-increasing lump in his throat, Dick replied, “Donna? It's me, Dick! I just wanted to—”
He never even got a chance to finish his sentence as the door suddenly slid open and Donna, dressed only in a nightgown, grabbed his neck and tossed him across her room.
Wonder Girl: “Just when I was starting to get some peace, he comes knocking on my door, bringing all that anger just rushing right back! But I might as well argue with him too, it's not like there's anything left to salvage of this day anyway…”
Pulling himself out of the wall, Robin could only stare, shocked, at his teammate. Dried tears stained her face as she tried to gain her composure enough to actually speak. “Donna, I heard what happened,” he said, hoping to calm the raging beast inside of her. “I'm sorry. Terry seemed like a cool guy when I met him, an' he didn't deserve this.”
“No,” said Donna, “He didn't.”
Her sadness was practically infectious, and Dick nearly sobbed himself as he continued, “I wish I could have been there…”
“Then why weren't you?!” The Amazon's pained scream echoed throughout the room.
Wonder Girl: “The others tried their best to save Terry, and even Raven at least had an excuse, even if she was terribly rude about it, but Dick doesn't even answer our calls and just disappears all day and then comes back here acting all sorry?! He has to answer for not helping!”
“Answer me!” raged the ferocious girl, again driving her teammate into the wall, holding her fist only inches away from his face. “I just want a straight answer! Why didn't you come?! Where were you?!”
“I was out finding your f---ing parents, okay?!”
Dick fell from Donna's grip as her body went limp, her mouth hanging open, completely and utterly shocked by the news.
Wonder Girl: “My parents?! But…I've been looking for them forever!”
Robin: “S---! Maybe the little guy was right, maybe I was gonna have to tell her sometime, but this was definitely not a good time, not when she was already this pissed!”
The adopted Amazon's mind could barely comprehend the news at first. “What…what do you mean, you found my parents?”
“The little Robin found out you didn't know who your parents were,” explained Robin, still catching his breath, “And decided to make finding them my final detective test…I passed.”
Tears spilling from her eyes like they'd sprung a leak, Donna actually looked happy, overjoyed even. “Then…then tell me! Who are they? I have to know!”
Wonder Girl: “I had a great childhood on Themyscara, but I wasn't born there, and as long as I didn't know my past its always felt like a part of me was missing! Finally, a chance to discover who I really am!”
Robin: “Hell, why not tell her now, right? No way I was gonna get outta of it after I'd spilled this much already…”
“Your parents were Salvador and Emily Montoni,” Dick explained with a sigh. “Salvador was a mob boss. You were kidnapped by one of his rivals, and left to die in that burning building—your father died trying to avenge you. Only your mother's left alive now…”
“Get out.” Donna cut Dick off before he could say anymore, pointing towards the door. “Get out now.” Her teammate didn't hesitate to listen to her for even a second, and as soon as the door slid shut behind him, she collapsed to the floor, her arms wrapped around her knees as she sobbed and sobbed.
Wonder Girl: “To me, being a good person, being a superhero has been everything. But my parents…were criminals?! Hera, I thought finding them would help me discover more about myself…but I never even thought it would be something I didn't like! What am I going to do now? How can I ever show my face again? How can I even keep on living?! Everything I ever had that made my life great…I've lost today…
“Great Zues…what do I do now?”
As Robin walked back into the hallway, meanwhile, he was met by his girlfriend, who was standing right outside Donna's door.
Starfire: “Dick and Donna were quite loud, and I had no problem overhearing what they were saying. It…it is all too much. I am tired of all of this…”
“You heard?” asked Dick.
Kory nodded. “Yes, all of it. Why did you not tell us about Terry? You said you met him.”
“Once,” admitted her boyfriend, “But only for a few seconds. Donna made me promise to keep it a secret!”
Starfire: “Secrets…Dick has had far too many of them lately.”
“What about your trip today?” continued the Tamaranian. “Why did you keep it a secret? Even if I could not come, you could have told me your mission! Or you could have included me, but you never do anymore! You are pushing me out of your life, Dick!”
He barely even knew what to say. “Kory…I'm not trying to…”
“But you are,” insisted Princess Koriand'r, “And I am tired of it. I fell in love with you because of your enthusiasm and your honesty and your zeal for life, but I see none of that in you anymore!”
Tears started to leak from her bright green eyes as she walked to her door, leaving her love in disbelief. “And it hurts me too much to be with you when you are like this, Dick. I am sorry…but we are over.”
The door slid shut behind her, leaving Dick Grayson all alone—in more ways than one.
Robin: “I told the little guy I could handle this, that bein' the best and bein' worthwhile to this team was worth bein' a jerk, worth losing some stuff in my life…but I'm not so sure anymore. This…this just hurts way too f---ing much…an' if this is what I'm gonna have to do to be a good hero…than I'm not sure I can be a hero anymore!”
Beast Boy sat at a computer console, footage from the Tower's security cameras running on the screens. The changeling's attention was focused on one monitor in particular, where Robin stood alone in the upstairs hallway.
“It's not cool to spy on people like that, Gar,” remarked Cyborg as he walked past, hauling debris from the shattered remains of his Speed Force equipment.
“Yeah, I know,” admitted the green boy, “But I just had to see what happened next! I mean, this is too much!” Slumping back into his chair, he continued, “Wally's gone, Raven's apparently a bigger jerk than we ever knew, Donna's pretty much broken, and now Dick and Kory just broke up!
“It feels like this whole team's just fallin' apart!”
Cyborg: “I understand how he feels. It's gonna take a miracle to make this all feel the same as it used to…”
Suddenly a different image shot to life on every screen in the tower, startling Beast Boy and most of the other Titans.
“Hello, my Titans!” exclaimed Mr. Jupiter on the screens, far too cheerfully for any of the Titans to handle. “I'm sorry to bother you after such a stressful day, but I just wanted to bring you some good news! With Wally having moved on, we had an open slot on the team—and I filled it!”
From behind the fashion-impaired director stepped a small, skinny girl with long blonde hair and goggles on her head. She was wearing khakis and a black t-shirt. “Titans, meet your new teammate!”
Gar's eyes nearly shot out of his head. “Terra?!”
Next time: Inspirations
OOC: Whew, this was a hard chapter to write! Hope you enjoyed it! We're up to the last story arc now, so if you think things got intense against Deathstroke just wait until you see where the story goes next!
Thanks for reading, and let me know what you think! Peace!