Hello, again. Warning, this chapter is a bit dark, sooo...

Ehh, even though this chapter is exiting, it took me a while to complete it. I have some BIG tests coming up, and a lot of books to read, and videos to make. I hope this chapter's excitement makes up for the wait… Even though you'll probably wait this long for each chapter… If the title wasn't hinting it enough, in this chapter our favorite heroes may get a little visit from a friend in Gotham. Not gonna tell you anymore, though!

The two Titans returned to the tower late at night to find their three remaining friends awake, enthusiastically cooking tofu bacon or some Tamaranian dish. As usual, the television switched off as Raven entered the room, the remote held in Cyborg's hand as he laughed nervously. Before he could react the remote whisked out of his grasp and into the grip of the empath, who turned the television back on and sat down to see what rumors the world was sharing about her.

"I told her," Robin explained, giving her an anxious look. Cyborg nodded, turning his attention back to the television and the now fuming demoness. The tin-man wouldn't have been surprised if her head suddenly exploded, seen as her face was red and black magic flamed from her body.

"It's only a matter of time before the Government finds a way to take down the cursed demon," the newscaster growled, his expression unemotional, yet angered all the same. Raven got back to her feet, about to yell an insult when the crime alert sounded, blaring into her ears. She let out a yelp and fell on her rear, wanting nothing more than for the noise to turn off. Robin got to his feet and gestured for the Titans to come, then looked to Raven, who had pulled on her hood and flown next to him.

"You sure you want to go?" He asked, tilting his head to the side. She nodded. "This is one way I can prove I'm not as bad as everyone thinks I am," she said, blinking, and looking at Robin's communicator. "What's the problem?" The Boy Wonder picked it up and stared at it for a long moment, then looked back at her.

"A dead body was found near the cafe earlier," he explained. "We're going to check it out."

The five Titans then left, with Starfire and Raven in the air, Robin on his R-Cycle, and Cyborg and Beast Boy in the T-Car. From up high the city lights outshone even the stars that glimmered in the countryside, reflecting against the blue waters. It was a lovely sight, a different kind of beauty than she saw in Azarath. Despite all the evils within, the Earth was a beautiful place, filled with an overwhelming amount of life of love. That point of view was ignoring the fact that the entire population abhorred her because of her crimes.

Raven found the body easily, for she knew where the cafe was located. The victim was a man about thirty, sprawled in an unhuman position, his arms and legs twisted wrongly. Blood pooled from a wound in his chest at a steady rate. She breathed in, realization hitting her: This man had been stabbed, but the weapon was missing.

Her eyes flickered up to the building, and immediately stopped dead, eyes widening. On the wall were words, written in the victim's blood. Her veins seemed to chill as she read them.

The shadow is coming for you all.

She stepped back and slipped on the blood, falling to the ground covered in dripping redness. Starfire, who had just arrived, helped her get to her feet, looking at the corpse nervously as she did so. The other Titans reached them shortly, first Robin, and then the other two boys.

"Who do you think undertook such cruelty?" Starfire asked after a few minutes of complete silence. Robin opened his his mouth to answer when a scream sounded nearby. Raven looked up to see smoke rising in the distance, probably from the museum nearby. Now that she listened she could hear the cries of the victims clearly.

"Fire," she growled, taking off before her teammates could protest. She had been right when she thought the museum was in flames; half of it burned with red, orange, yellow, and gold. In the unburnt end gunshots sounded; that was where the majority of the screams were coming from. For a moment she was torn between the decision of whether to stop the flames or whoever was shooting, but made her choice quickly when she saw firefighters closing in on the fire. Without any more hesitation she zoomed down to the museum entry, letting the air whisk past her face.

She landed at the museum doorway, one of the doors swung open completely. Hanging from the un open door was a dead body, a man with a horrible, twisted grin on his face. Feeling a twinge of fear she stepped inside, trying to shake off a tense feeling in her bones. "You stop bad guys all the time," she told herself. "There's nothing to be afraid of. Nothing at a-." She was cut off by a scream in the distance, the cry feminine, followed by a maniacal laugh that sent shivers down her spine. She ran down the hall, pressing her ear against a closed door and listening for a voice.

"Please! I won't tell anyone, I promise! Just let me go!" It was the same female voice as before, panicked and sobbing. She was tempted to go inside and help the poor girl, but fear of whoever was in there with her held her back.

"Oh, but what would be the fun in that?"Another person replied in a singsong voice. A gunshot sounded, along with the thump of the victim's body as she fell to the floor. Suddenly, Raven knew she needed backup, and really bad. A door opened inside the other room as the murderer left, and then silence. She waited for a few minutes, before going inside.

The room was filled with countless priceless artifacts, all encased in bulletproof glass, and covered in droplets of blood. The now dead woman laid in the corner, her eyes blank with lifelessness. She pulled of her hood and knelt down to examine the corpse. The victim had been shot in the forehead, the bulletwound deep and bloody. Using her powers so not to touch the blood, she pulled out the bullet and dropped it into her hand. It was long and ridged on the edge for cutting deeper into flesh. She turned it over, and in seeing what was on the other side, yelped and dropped it to the floor

Raven starred at the fallen object with a gaping mouth, her eyes widened and her face paled. Recovering from her shock, she picked the bullet back up and stared at it once again. Written in green letters that seemed to drip across the bullet, were words that seemed impossible in the circumstance.

Hello Raven.

A horrible, insane laugh broke her out of her thoughts. Raven whirled around, just to have a hand grab her throat, choking her. She cried out in pain as the face in front of her came into view. The person gave her a wicked, unhinged grin.

"Oh, it's birdie girl!" The Joker exclaimed. "Nice to finally meet birdie boy's little demon friend!"


Robin tumbled through the flames, not only trying to find any survivors but also Raven, who had disappeared just a few minutes prior. He was not worried that she would be burned by the flames, for she was too powerful, but that someone would see her and do something horrible while he was away. He knew what the civilians did to people who even supported his friend, What cruelties would they carry out on her if she fell into their grasp? He shuddered right after dodging a few falling walls. Maybe Raven could easily avoid the flames, but it was much harder for him, who was merely human. He grimaced as an ember hit his skin, burning the exposed part of his arm. It hurt, but he had experienced much worse.

Nearby, Starfire picked up a little boy and pulled him through the flames. Her being Tamaranian was very helpful in this circumstance, for she could withstand extreme heat. The boys were the ones with the problems. All three were struggling to avoid the flames, and saving the people within.

A sudden noise made Robin turn, a noise he knew much too well. Shivers were sent down his spine as the same cackle sounded again, followed by a gunshot. Immediately he knew who had started the fire, and where Raven was at the present moment. A cry of pain cut through the air, one he recognised very, very well. His friend was in danger!


Raven grappled at the famous villain's hand, trying desperately to release her throat from from his grasp. Her lungs burned from the lack of oxygen; all she wanted was another breath. Her pale face was going the color of her hair, all she could do was kick at her captor and hope she could be released. The Joker gave her an unhinged grin as she struggled, but failed to escape. "Poor little birdie," he said, stroking her hair with his free hand. "I almost feel bad for you… Just kidding!" He threw her to the ground, her teeth clacking together as her side hit the floor. Her hands instantly flew up to her neck as she pulled in several precious breaths which she had lacked just moments ago. She grimaced at the pain in her lungs; they felt like they were in flames.

Why is the Joker here? She could not help but wonder. He's supposed to be in Gotham, not Jump! Deep within she had an eerie feeling that his arrival had something to do with her, that and the murder near the cafe. Could he be the killer? It was likely, seen as both happened at a similar time. But it just didn't feel right. If the Joker had some well engineered plan to destroy the Titans, he would yell it out to the world, not hide his crimes underneath another name. It just wasn't in his nature to be secretive. He had no knowledge beforehand of her demon ancestry, so he couldn't reveal any information. Nor had he met her prior; Robin was the only Titans he knew. None of it fit together like it had Slade.

"Aw," the person in question hissed. He was standing right above her with a knife in one hand and a gun in the other. "I'm not done with you yet, sweety." Sliding his gun in his belt, he grabbed the hood of her cloak before she could escape, and pulled her back to her feet. In moments the knife was pressed to her throat, drawing a little blood at her jawline. The liquid trickled down her neck slowly, cold against her skin. The Joker put his finger against some and licked it.

"Am I gonna do it?" He asked,pushing the knife farther into her skin. Raven, her eyes widening as she stared at the dangerous weapon that was inches from killing her. She was terrified of the idea of death, that her fate was in the hands of a psychopath. If he wanted her dead all he'd have to do was press, and she'd never see her friends again. She shut her eyes, not wanting the last thing she would see to be her hideous murderer.

"Don't worry, dearest!" The Joker cried, throwing her to the ground and landing on top of her back. "I would kill you now, but I've been told to keep you alive so someone else can deal with you. That doesn't mean I can't have fun though!" Raven screamed as the villain's dagger was thrust into her arm, it's sharp edge ripping through her pale dripped down her limb and onto the already bloody floor. She squirmed underneath the deranged man, trying to ignore the terrible pain of the malfeasance. She kicked at the Joker wildly, but failed to hit her target, and in turn failed to escape. Smiling, the villain slid his dagger across her already wounded arm, drawing more red blood. Her shrieks grew more constant as she was continuously slashed across her back, her blood splattering over the corrupt man's face.

Raven let out a pained gasp as the Joker pressed the side of her face against the bloody floor, holding a hand to her cheek. Her stomach rose and fell as she pulled in several deep breaths, trying to ignore the pressure against her face. His fingernails dug into her cheek, digging into the fragile skin. "Stop," she pleaded, barely able to open her mouth with the pressure against her visage. "P-please stop."

The Joker laughed hideously, showing her his bloodstained teeth. He raised his dagger, preparing for another blow against her back when-


The Joker was pulled off her back by another force, pulling the villain to the ground with a rage filled cry. The other person was fast and lithe, with a somewhat graceful leap and amazing dexterity. The villain let out a cat-like hiss as they tussled on the floor, failing to stab each other with their weapons. Raven could hardly see what was going on; the figures moved so swiftly, all she saw were flashes of colors and the shine of the villain's knife.

After a few minutes a high pitched scream cut through the air, burning her ears with increasing intensity. The Joker had been stabbed in the leg, deep enough to leave him unconscious but shallow enough to keep him alive. Sirens wailed in the distance as the firefighters, police, and ambulance approached to deal with the fire, the Joker, and the casualties.

Raven tried to get to her feet, but her legs throbbed with so much pain that immediately she collapsed back to the floor. Her savior approached and held out a gloved hand, his masked eyes creased with worry. She grabbed his hand and he pulled her to her feet, letting her lean against his shoulder. It was clear now that the person in question was Robin, here to save her from his mentor's arch-nemesis. He led her out of the destroyed museum and into the T-Car, where he wrapped her in blankets and let her lie on the back seat. It was technically illegal to ride a car without a seatbelt, but the half-demon heroine was in too much pain to worry about that at the present moment. The drive home was quiet, the only sound being her raspy, pained breaths. Her blood trickled onto the seat, sure to leave a stain and enrage Cyborg. She shut her eyes in an attempt to fall asleep, but failed. The pain was too intense.

Robin parked the T-Car in the garage and got out swiftly, his movements quick and panicked. He opened the side door and pulled out a weakened Raven, who was nearly unconscious due to blood-loss. She continuously let out moans and pained gasps as the two Titans walked through the Tower. Her eyes were barely open, shutting every few seconds before opening again. The Boy Wonder lead his pained comrad to the infirmary, where he laid her down on the bed and covered her in a blanket. He grabbed a few cloths from the cupboard and wrapped them around her wounded back and her wounds were beginning to stitch back together due to her magic, but Robin knew they would still hurt for a few days afterwards.

He cursed himself for not getting there sooner, for letting his mentor's enemy get close to his friend. Poor Raven had been caught in the worst situation with no backup. If he had gotten to her just a few seconds later she might have been dead, a twisted knife dug into her back. Robin shuddered, for the thought was so horrid he could hardly bear to think it.

With a glance at the wounded girl he pulled out his communicator and flicked it open, revealing Cyborg's metallic face. "What's up, Robin?" The tin-man asked, his face filled with worry. "Raven needs medical attention," he responded, moving the communicator so his teammate could see the now unconscious demoness. "She can heal herself, but I want you to watch her because of your knowledge on health. Have Starfire fly you over; I'm going to come back and continue to help Beast Boy with the fire." Cyborg nodded, before the screen went black. The Boy Wonder knew his friend would be here in mere moments, so he took the R-Cycle and rode over to the city.

Later That Night

Robin paced through the city, walking briskly toward the crime scene to investigate the mysterious murder. An hour prior the fire had been put out, and now smoke rose from the museum as firefighters searched for still smoldering pieces of ruin. Beast Boy had been sent back to the Tower so he could go to bed, though despite how late it was the Boy Wonder he had done that instead of checking on Raven or playing video games with Cyborg. It was clear all of the Titans would be very tired tomorrow. He didn't care; he had more important things to do.

He approached the body, twitching his nose as he tried to ignore the repellant stench of blood. The man was lying in the same twisted position, his eyes still blank and lifeless. He was shocked that anyone could act such cruelty upon another. That was why he was here: To find out who the culprit was.

Robin let his gloved hand touch the blood on the man's chest, holding it up to his face so he could study it. It was normal, unlike Raven's mysteriously dark-red, almost black blood and Starfire's, which was nearly orange. The victim was human.

He looked up and immediately something caught his eye, a shine so bright it nearly blinded him. He walked over to a fallen dumpster next to the cafe and dug past a few pieces of garbage until he found it. Cleverly hidden where no one would look, and covered in crimson blood, was a twisted knife.

Pulling some equipment out of his utility belt, he ran a DNA scan on the handle, where there was clearly a fingerprint. The scanner took a few moments, before it beeped with a red light. It had found its match. He took a quick look, but immediately dropped it to the floor, shock covering his face.

"B-but that's impossible!" He stammered. "She was with me the entire day!" She's lied to you before, hasn't she? The dark part of his mind hissed. Carefully, he picked the scanner back up and looked at it again. It was there, clear as the sunshine. Written in white letters was a name he recognised very well. One he knew by heart, to the depths of his soul. He breathed in a sharp breath. The word couldn't lie.


CLIFFHANGERS! As always, I left you with even more questions than before. Why is the Joker in Jump? Is Raven really the murderer, or is someone else behind this? Am I personally being too obvious with the Shadow, or not obvious enough?

Poor Raven just always gets in the thick of things, doesn't she?