the spaces between light


She wakes in darkness, which isn't much of a surprise. Raven often finds comfort in the spaces darkness resides. She's used to the feel-it's often colder and quieter in the dark. Peaceful. It's her safe place.

She doesn't feel any form of suspicion until she hears someone stirring beside her. Then it all starts to come back to her.

The blinding brightness of a flash grenade. Deafening sound. A firm hold on her shoulder.

It's too dark to see much-from what she remembers it could be one of her teammates, but it could also very well be a trap. Her father had taught her to always err on the side of caution and thus far that logic hadn't failed her. She tries to focus on the center of her palm, willing her magic energy to surround her hand in case of an attack.

Nothing happens.

Well, she supposes, it could be worse.


The back of his head really hurts. There's a crick in his neck, bruises on his ribs, and maybe a crack or two in a few of his bones. Now, he doesn't want to exaggerate here, but it kind of feels like he might be dying.

Garfield resolves to just lay there and sleep it off, he doesn't have super healing or anything, but he does tend to heal faster than the average Joe.

Unfortunately, the moment after he decides this, someone is karate chopping him in the neck. Whoever else was in the room with him must have been either a ninja or invisible-because he didn't sense their presence at all.

That's when the severe darkness occurs to him. He blinks a few times as if it might dissolve the darkness, but then the mystery ninja is moving again. This time when they make to karate chop him, he catches their wrist.

Garfield is adept at basic hand to hand combat, but he isn't like...a super warrior or anything. The best he can do without turning into an animal is dislocate a few joints and maybe break a limb or two. So when he tries to shift into a gorilla and nothing happens, he's a little stumped. Wracking his brain to recall those training sessions Robin had given him.

His opponent is crafty and tries to pull some crazy spinning kick move on him-at least that's what he thinks but it's extremely difficult to tell without having any light.

"Listen I don't know who you are, but-" He now has a hold of a wrist and an ankle and he really isn't sure what to do from here. "Uh...I'm sure we can work something out!"

He feels the ninja tense.


It just got so much worse. Of all the people she could have been stuck in a dark room with why did it have to be him?

"Beast Boy?" She says, her voice wobbles slightly because she's teetering on one leg.

"Raven!" He says back.

She doesn't expect him to release her wrist and leg at the same time, which leads to a very graceless tumble onto the ground. She squeaks. The sound is both undignified and so unlike her that she's very appreciative of the fact that they're in such thick darkness. As if the sound itself weren't bad enough, he's instantly hovering over her, probably out of concern. She can feel the heat radiating off him. A similar heat rushes to her cheeks, and suddenly she is thankful for the blanket of darkness.

Not missing a beat he says, "You okay?"

"M fine." She mutters, silently willing him to retreat to the furthest corner of the room. He doesn't take the hint.

Blissfully, she feels the heat leave, and she guesses that he's moving to sit beside her instead of hovering over her. His hand finds her shoulder, moving just under her back to help her sit up. The action is kind, but she still wishes he wouldn't touch her so easily. She's been careful around all of them. Not to get too close. She doesn't want to pull any of her friends onto the dark path she walks. Especially not Gar. He's been kind even though he's seen what lies beneath. After journeying into her subconsciousness she thought for certain that they would drift apart. That their friendship would amount to nothing more than allies on the same team. Roommates that sometimes crossed paths.

"How did we get here?" He breaks the silence, and somehow despite the fact that she can't see him, she can sense that he's moved to sit so he can hug his knees. She senses discomfort rolling off him in waves. "How long have we been here?"

"I think the criminals we were fighting is probably a safe bet." She doesn't mean her sarcasm in the moment. Her words feel like acid coming out. It's not going to help the situation and will likely drive Garr into a deeper level of discomfort. Raven really doesn't want to treat him unkindly. "But I don't know how long we've been here."

"Oh." He falls quiet briefly, perhaps stunned by the tone of her voice. "Do you think the other Titans are looking for us?"

They'd departed on the mission as a team so it was highly likely. She doesn't want to squash the hopeful tone in his voice so she says, "Probably."

"What are we gonna do if they don't come? I can't shift. Can you that weird voodoo magic?"

He always finds a way to diminish the terrifying chaos of her powers to nothing more than a bad joke. Or some sort of cheesy pun. It's one of his more childish traits. And it used to make her angry, now it's just a mild annoyance that she finds endearing. Sometimes. She isn't entirely sure why she goes along with it, but instead of correcting him she says, "Unfortunately, the voodoo magic isn't working either."

He goes quiet then. Too quiet to be comfortable. "Beast Boy?"

"I just...I'm...I don't always do well in the dark. Sorry. It brings back bad memories."

She doesn't want to press him. His voice already sounds too fragile. Raven isn't sure how she knows where he is, but she reaches out and finds his back. When he doesn't move away, she begins tracing patterns in what she hopes is a soothing manner. She remembers the symbols of peace and protection and traces them from memory. She wants to keep him safe. Wants him to feel at ease around her.

"It'll be alright." Her voice is nothing but a whisper. She fears that if she speaks too loudly the moment will be over.

"I'm just...I'm still afraid."

" I making it worse?"

"No." She feels his hand cover hers and she goes still. "No. It's nice. It feels really nice. I think it's helping."

"I can't keep doing it if you hold my hand still."

"Oh." He says, moving his hand from hers. She smiles because he can't see it. "Sorry."

Feeling bold in the face of his acceptance she pulls him to her. He goes with the movement until his head is pressed to her chest and her arms are wrapped around him. When he's snugly against her she begins the motion of tracing the symbols again. She starts on the outside of his arm, moving slowly up, over his shoulder, and onto his back. Even though his face is so close to hers she doesn't feel brave enough to touch his neck or face.

They lapse into silence after that. He begins to relax, even as he clutches onto one of her arms-the one that isn't moving. It anchors her to this moment. Sobering her to the fact that it feels like the last chance she will get to have a moment with him like this.

"I won't let anything happen to you."

Suddenly it feels like their time together was short. It might not be today, but she could feel from the bottom of her heart that the day would come soon that she wouldn't be able to hold him like this.

"Don't worry. If something comes I'll protect you."

She doesn't expect him to move, but he pulls back. He's still in her arms but his head lifts. His voice takes on a fierceness she's never heard before, "And I will protect you right back."

Their faces must be only centimeters apart. She can feel each exhale of breath on her mouth, warming her lips. She thinks it might be good to keep her distance. She mustn't be too greedy. Good things rarely come to her. She shouldn't squander the good he's brought into her life.

She should stay away. But a kiss would be nice. Just one. To remember when she sits alone in the darkness at home. Something to hold onto when the day came when they'd have to part.

When he leans forward she can feel his lips hesitating over hers. She should pull away. Stay as far away from him as she can. To keep him safe. His mouth is softer than she expects. It's a gentle, fleeting touch. It feels like a daydream, both far off and close enough to embrace.

She puts her hand on his shoulder, intending to push him away, but somehow ends up clutching his shirt between her fingers and pulling him closer. His hands find her face, cradling it like it's something precious. They kiss again and again, or maybe it's one continuous flow of kisses melting together. Lips moving in unison.

The first touch of tongue has her cheeks heating, and her heartbeat begins to rush. Her stomach flutters. She feels like a normal girl for the first time in her life. Like a normal girl kissing her crush for the first time.

After long moments, when their kisses become desperate and she's practically pulling him on top of her he draws back.

"Raven I-" He sounds breathless, panting lightly as he urges her to lay back. "I should tell you...I um. Well…"

She feels him crawl to rest above her, their hips slit comfortably together, but between their uniforms she can't get any sense of friction. It feels the same as when she settles into bed with her favorite pillow. Familiar and warm. He stumbles over his words a few more times before she spares him by pressing a finger to his lips.

"I know. Me too."

Garfield sighs, sounding relieved to not have to plow through the whole messy confession.

He's leaning down to kiss her again when there's a thunderous noise just outside one of the walls. It's the first sense of the outside world they've heard since they both woke in this room of darkness.

Raven is dumbfounded at first. Things were just getting...well. Somewhere. Regardless, it's probably for the best for them to separate before things get too complicated to explain to their teammates. Garfield rises first and helps pull her to her feet just as a neon green beam cuts through the far west wall of their prison.

The beam continues slicing through the wall as if it were made of paper, forming the perfect door when the wall collapses inward.

"Friends! I have found you!" Kory chirps. Her silhouette is back lit by the clinically bright lights behind her. She's floating, a sign of true elation.

"Star, you coulda warned us. If we weren't on the other side that would have totally squashed us." Garfield says with a mock irritation.

"Oh no! I'm terribly sorry. Next time I'll be sure to give you plenty of the heads up." Her English as always is a little backwards, but her smile is warm. She gives the two of them a thumbs up. Raven is glad to see her, despite the interruption.

Garfield moves toward the exit, fingers brushing Raven's as he passes. She feels the briefest stroke and realizes the touch was intentional. It starts to feel like maybe she might have been wrong...maybe there was a chance for them to have a moment outside the darkness.

It makes her blush, knowing they have a secret between them. As she follows him out she wonders how long it will take before the others find out.