And her eyes suddenly opened wide with fear after four hours of sleep.
Raven sat up from her bed. She could not breath, she was shaking and she unconsciously reached out to the other side of the bed. But when her fingers touched the empty space- the fear disappeared for a moment as her heart sank to her stomach, and she whipped her head to the vacant spot.
And she bursts into tears, he was not here.
She had forgotten she was sleeping on his side of the bed to bring her comfort tonight. How many times had she woken up like this and searched for him—only to find an empty spot? She knew it was frequent enough. And as oddly as the thought was comforting- it was much more painful. He was never there when she was in this state.
Raven brings her shaking hands to her face, and wept into her own hands. Whenever Damian was here, she would sleep peacefully. He'd hold her not knowing the meaning of her need of knowing that he was there. But then she recalled the times where he would be gone in the middle of the night too. And when his presence is not close to Raven, she wakes up due to the nightmares—and he, Damian would not be there to comfort her. And she was used to it. She had become so keenly aware of his absence.
Life and relationships were not perfect. There were compromises needed in both, and so she never asked him to stay. How could she- when she knew how important being a hero was to her lover. She also never want to make him chose between her and his hero identity. And even though she knew relationships needed compromises, that was a line she was not willing to cross.
Raven tries to calm herself and lessened her shaking and controlled her fear. She takes her phone to check the time. But as her fingers barely touched her phone, a sudden magical surge came from her hand to her phone, which breaks the gadget.
A purple like fog was wrapped around her hand, and she stares at the phone that was broken for a moment. She lifts the other hand that was on the bed to find that both hands were emitting the same faint dark glow. She found that she was starting to shake and freak out again.
Again. How many times had she broken her phone because of her unchecked magic in moments like this? Raven places her forehead on her knees as she just allowed herself to feel it. Feel everything. She knew she would feel better if she just let herself cry and feel it. And she wept, the magic wrapped around her hands dissipating as she wept.
Raven was so focused on feeling everything, that she did not heard her bedroom door creak. And she felt something nuzzle her leg, she glances to find Titus' snout and then cheek rubbing on her leg. And it comforted her greatly. The sadness and fear had suddenly subsided.
"Hey, Titus." She greets him with a sniff. Titus stares at her intently. She smiles at him and he gets on the bed in which Raven moved more to the center to give him space.
"You're going to sleep with me tonight?" She asked as she pats his head. "Imagine Damian's horror if he finds out I'm sharing my bed with another male." She forced a chuckle as Titus adjusted to find his sleeping position. And when Titus settled down, she placed her head on Damian's pillow and cuddled Titus tightly. Titus snout nuzzling her neck.
When tried to relax herself to force herself to fall asleep, all she could think of was the fear when she awoke. Images flash under her closed eyelids and she stifled a cry. And she silently cried herself as Titus try and comfort her. Despite being in tears, she reminded herself that she had to contact the McCoy's and tell her that her phone had broken.
When she woke up a few hours later it was still dark out. Raven reached out to ger phone and was confused when her fingers felt something morphed. She glances over her phone and her eyes widened.
That was right, she had broken her phone again a few hours ago. With a sigh she goes to the bathroom, feeling her eyes stinging—she had cried herself to sleep after all. She tried to be careful as to not wake Titus.
When she entered the bathroom and looked at the mirror in front of the sink. She couldn't help but shake her head at her puffy eyes. She takes a towel and wets it as she went back to her bed and let it rest against her eyes for a good 20 minutes as she allowed herself to fall into the pits of her thoughts.
Raven had accidentally dozed off and when she woke, she recalled that she had to tell the McCoy's of her broken phone. She goes to Damian's desk and opened a drawer where she stored her laptop. And sits on his chair and placed her laptop on his table. She puts her feet on the chair as she thought of Damian who sat here frequently. She then chats the family in a group chat that Catherine made composing Raven, Arthur and Catherine. Arthur replied instantly.
Raven: Haha, just careless. Arthur you should sleep.
Raven glances at her laptop's clock. And adds that it was still 4:30 in the morning.
Arthur: You should go back to sleep too.
Arthur then goes offline, and Raven couldn't help but shake her head. She wasn't even able to scold him. She sends a chat message to Mr. and Mrs. McCoy's.
She did not want to sleep anymore.
Raven glances at Titus who was sleeping on the bed, a faint smile on her lips. She then unconsciously opened the pictures folder in her laptop and her cursor was on top of a folder named "Teen Titans". Raven could not find herself to open the pictures. Instead she heard a ping. She looks at her notifications and it says that she got a message from Jon.
Jon: Hey, why are you awake?
Raven: I couldn't go back to sleep. The reply was not a lie she thought quietly.
Jon: I see.
Raven: Yep. Why are you awake?
Jon: I couldn't go to sleep too.
There was no reply between the two for five minutes and Raven just kept staring at Jon's name.
Jon: Is it alright if we keep each other company then?
Raven stared at his chat for a while before deciding to reply.
Raven: I'd like that.
And they talked about their everyday lives. Jon not mentioning even once about missions but talked about how other members were doing. She tells Jon that she thinks Damian might be gone for a while and how she hopes he is safe. He responds by apologizing and not being able to reassure her of his safety since even he did not know what Damian was up to.
Jon mentions that he would be in Metropolis for a few days and that he will leave for Metropolis later that afternoon. If Raven ever wants to hang out, he was always available as his visit to Metropolis is mostly for leisure. She thanks him for his offer and tells him that she would get back on him on that. She had broken her phone and she could use company buying a new one. But she was not entirely sure if she was available in the coming days so first, she had to check her schedule.
Jon: No pressure.
Raven couldn't help but blink at the simple reply. Jon had told Raven that so many times thorough out the years. And for some odd reason, it has come to a point wherein it was comforting. Such a simple word had become something that she ended up looking forward to—that she looked forward to hearing from Jon, whenever she was upset.
And she felt the guilt wash over her. As simple as his gesture was—she felt guilty.
Raven: Well, I will leave a message if I can confirm or not. I have to go, thank you Jon.
Raven waits for his simple reply, which consisted of a thank you and a you're welcome and left her laptop.
Raven absentmindedly walked out to the open space outside her room, and stopped in her tracks to see that the sun was already out and about. She glances at the wall clock to see that it was almost 7am; she was surprised to know that she had talked to Jon for so long. And in that duration, she did not even receive a single message from Damian.
Azar- exactly what was Batman making him do.
Raven was walking barefoot to the kitchen area and when she got there and looked for cereal, she realized how cold the floor was against her feet. And it was oddly comforting—it was oddly distracting.
She prepares her cereal and goes to check on Titus' food and water bowls, and decided she had to refill them after her meal. And as she ate, she looked out at Gotham.
How can a beautiful city, under this heartwarming light be filled with so much sinister villains? And the extinguisher of that fire—hold its own kind of trauma. Raven stir her cereal as she thought of Damian and sighed.
She hears a low growl which pulls her back into reality, she stares at Titus with a faint smile.
"Titus, I'm sorry to have worried you." She approaches him as he approaches her, she pats his head. "I will refill your bowls then." And she goes to the cabinet under her sink to get his dog food and got a bottled water to put on Titus' water bowl.
"There you go, let's have breakfast together." She hums as she sat on a single couch with her legs up on it, as she stares at Titus. The pair finished their meals and Titus approach Raven and hopped on top of her legs, and she laughs.
"Well, I was getting cold, I suppose." She strokes Titus head that was on the couch's arm. And then her thoughts were consumed of the possibility of Titus not being there the night prior. Of all the things that could have ended differently, of the promise that Damian broke yet again, of Titus being brought here, of him sleeping with her on the bed in the beginning and if he had not come in her bedroom when she awoke. And so much more.
It was odd, she couldn't help but marvel, of how Titus had seen her in that state when Damian was not even aware of her struggles at night when he was not there. It should be very upsetting to her, and it was at some point. At least last night it was very upsetting, but right now—the thought felt rather empty.
It wasn't like she didn't care about it anymore—but right now as she thought of the dissatisfaction she had for his absences—Raven felt nothing. She felt so hollow after her nightmares.
"Titus, I have to shower," She pats Titus' leg and he jumps out of her lap and onto the floor.
When she walks into the bedroom, she checks her laptop for messages. Anastasia had sent Raven a message saying that Catherine had a ballet class and she would like Raven to accompany Catherine there. Catherine's class was on 10 that very morning, and Raven glances at the time, it was still 7am so there was still time.
Raven also got a message from Catherine saying the same thing as Anastasia, that Catherine would like for Raven to be there with her in her class. And had suggested that they buy Raven a phone.
She replied to the pair that she would be there at the ballet studio as per usual by 10am. It wasn't the first time she had to observe Catherine in her lessons and they normally just met at the venue. And she added to Catherine that she had already made plans to buy for a new phone, Raven hoped that her boyfriend would accompany her.
Catherine replied instantly and told her that she understood that Raven would want to buy with her boyfriend, and that they would see each other later that day. Raven turns around to leave her laptop again, she was supposed to shower now. But her eyes landed on the unmade bed, and she recalled her restless evening. She absentmindedly approached the bed, sat on the floor by Damian's side of the bed, and laid her head. She could faintly smell him on the sheets.
She closes her eyes and she started crying. She felt like she was in such a predicament. She wanted him here but she couldn't let him stay. She knew she loved him but she had become unhappy. She loves him and wants to stay because of that love—but she wondered if it is no longer enough. She chewed on her lower lip and got up as she wiped her tears. She was about to grab her bed covers but it was mostly on the other side of the bed. She thought of using her magic to make the bed, after all she had to see if she could control it now.
And to her surprise it was working now, she chuckles at herself. Of course, her magic would be fine now, she knew it would be like this. Maybe she always expected a different outcome after her small magical outbursts. She kind of hoped that when her dad died, he cursed her, it was what Raven thought she deserved.
With the bed made she walks into her bathroom to shower. Her thoughts still of her father as she stripped herself and placed her clothes on the hamper.
Her father. Everything began there—she should be thankful for him despite the troubles he caused. Afterall, she would not have met Damian without him. She turns the knob of her shower and water starts falling. And she stood there consumed by her thoughts again.
Trigon. An inter-dimensional demon—her father who was finally defeated a year and a half ago. And when he was finally defeated—a few days after to be exact—she decided she did not want to be a part of the Teen Titans anymore. She also knew she did not want to become a part of the Justice league.
At that moment, she finally understood why other heroes choose to retire. Some would die as a hero and perhaps that was what Damian wanted for himself, but it wasn't something she wanted. A younger her probably would have, but she was no longer the child trying to protect the world from her father.
She was different now. That little girl who had summoned her father curious of her origins, who had killed an entire planet and her mother because of her selfishness—was gone. The girl who was then taken by her father after wiping an entire planet, who had seen the atrocities her father had done and followed his wishes was gone too. And when that girl decided to do better for herself and to try to redeem what she had done—who had eventually become the prison of her horrid father—well even she disappeared too.
And when he was finally gone, she felt like she could breathe now. She did not have to look over her shoulder every step of the way. She wanted to reclaim her name 'Raven' for herself. She wanted her birthname to no longer be associated to the hero 'Raven', whom she was since she came to earth.
She wanted to become her own self. One that did not worry about her father and the world or even protecting people. And she must have appeared selfish when she told Damian that. But she recalled the relief she had when she had asked if he thought her selfish, and he simply shook his head no. That simple head shake felt so reassuring at that moment. And Raven began crying in the shower, her tears mixed in with the water.
She did not notice that she had covered her mouth with her fingers. And she did not realize how her silent tears became muffled cries. And when Raven realized that she was sobbing, she knew how unhappy she really was.
She had known, that everything had changed since then—since her father's disappearance in her life. And everyday she found herself changing too- with it. And right now—she finally felt the real intensity of the change in herself.
She forces herself to stop crying and finish her shower. Today was going to be a good day she tried to convince herself, and she repeats that as she does the motions to finish up showering. Damian would come any time soon and give her a big hug and apologize for leaving and they will be happy—she will be happy. Damian would shower her with butterfly kisses and—Raven froze as she stepped out of the shower with the thought of his kisses.
Guilt. That was what his kisses meant—another gesture of his guilt for leaving her. She furrows her brows, very certain that, that was not the case. But when had she associated those butterfly kisses; he gives her when he returns after a mission as—his guilt?
Raven places a hand on her forehead. She could remember his thumb caressing her check. The gesture with his calloused hands brought a smile on her lips—and then she frowned. The memory tainted in her mind as another gesture Damian gave her out of guilt for leaving her behind yet again.
She wraps a towel tightly around her as she felt her surroundings shrink. She tried to even out her breathing. She approaches her bathroom counter and stopped in front of the sink and looked at her reflection.
She looked at a pale woman with purple hair way pass her shoulders. She was hyperventilating with tears that refused to fall on her eyes. She felt disgusted at her own reflection, she closes her eyes tightly and the tears fall, as she inhales and exhale. When she opened her eyes again, the first thing she saw was her amethyst colored earring studs. And she froze.
She had completely forgotten about them.
Finally, she was able to control herself as her eyes focused on the earrings. She took a moment as her muscles relaxed and her breathing actually got better. She always wore them, and because she always did wear them, she forgets about their existence. Sometimes her hair covers the earrings so she doesn't notice them too. She had never taken them off since Damian gave it to her when she arrived at Gotham.
They were a rather small pair of earrings; they were from Damian and his anxiousness over her safety in Gotham. It was small but it had state-of-the-art batman tech inside—it was simply a tracker. Damian promised her that he would never use the tracker unless it was absolutely necessary, to which she had just nodded as her response. And after he proceeded to explain how it works.
There were multiple ways of using the earrings. The earrings would be constantly tracking her, but she would not pop up on the GPS map that Damian had access to unless he specifically was looking for her because he would have to input some things to have her unhidden in the system. To ensure Raven, and to make her aware that he had unhidden her from the system, the earrings would turn red.
If a pair of the earrings would be separated from the other for a certain distance for a certain amount of time, the system would automatically unhide Raven and notify Damian of the change. If Raven breaks one of the earrings, it will alert Damian of where the earring was broken and the location would be flagged. The other earring will still show her location if it was not damaged. Raven breaking an earring is equivalent to an emergency—but in reality, to Damian it would mean an imminent life threat on Raven.
Raven touches the earrings longingly. Damian had given it to her for her safety, a memory that used to bring her happiness due to his endearing concern over her—felt bland in her mind. She glares at herself in the mirror—thinking long and hard.
When had these memories of happiness and love—become so gloomy and lonely? And her stare on her reflection wavers. She knew when. She had just avoided everything altogether- in the hopes that if she chooses to forget about them, one day she will wake up feeling her old self. But perhaps it was time to transition through that—or at least go into it—and then transition out of it.
She smiles at herself, today will be a good day. She convinces herself again.
She steps out of her bathroom to see Titus on the bed, his eyes at her. She smiles and greets him.
"I have work today, and don't know when I will be back. Should I leave you at a dog park or something?" Raven talks to Titus as she changes clothes. She puts on some lacy undergarments, at the back of her mind hoping Damian would arrive today. "I don't think Damian would love it if I leave you somewhere with the commoners," she playfully teases as she looks for some jeans. Titus of course doesn't say anything, he was a rather quiet and well-behaved Great Dane. Finding a black ripped mom jean that she felt like wearing, she sighed.
Next was a top. As she focused on looking for a top she stopped talking to Titus. Her hand brushes off on some jackets, and she turned to look at this black jacket calling out to her. She takes it off from the hanger and she realized it was Damian's black bomber jacket.
Oh yes, she felt like wearing this, but she still needed a top. And she recalled that she had gotten a black form fitting crop top with Damian's robin logo on the center. She searches for the top and puts it on and Damian's jacket. It was big on her, but it was his.
She walks to the vanity and reached out for his cologne. She stopped, her fingers an inch away from touching the cologne. This time, she actually noticed that she was about to grab his cologne. A small smile forms on her lips as she takes it and sprays some on herself. She sits down to comb her hair. And put on her make up.
"Titus, I think I will drop you off to the manor." She says as she stops from placing on mascara to look at him. She raises a brow. Titus looked as though he was glaring at her.
"Well, you accompanied me yesterday, that is more than enough." She tells him, thinking that Titus did not want to leave her because Damian asked him to look after his girlfriend. Titus looked about ready to pout, but walks to her. "I should contact Alfred and tell him that I will portal into the Wayne Manor to save some time," and she continues to put her mascara. "I can play with you for a while." And Titus barks in disagreement.
Raven smiles, "Alright, I will leave you here then." and finishes up her make-up.
Raven goes back to the closet and put on her favorite black heeled boots. She put in some accessories, like a couple of silver rings on her fingers, a black strapped watch, a simple two-toned chained bracelet and a silver choker necklace.
She glances at her wrist watch and noticed that it was a little over nine now.
"Let me prepare all of your things then Titus, hopefully I can come home early." Raven says as she leaves her bathroom door open and placed a stopper and as she walked out the bedroom, did the same thing. She glances at Titus bowls from her doorsill and decided to refill them. Afterwards she checked his dog litter that was another corner and cleaned it and placed it back.
"I think that should be everything." She says as she glances at Titus who was now on the couch looking at her. Raven walks to the counter where she felt her bag and keys last night, and went over her things inside. Seeing everything she needs is inside—minus a phone she went back into her room to tell Anastasia and Catherine that she was on her way to Catherine's dance studio and apologized for the inconvenience again. She receives a reply from Anastasia who apologized for the last-minute request for Raven to join Catherine and for the next two days Raven should be free from their calling. And Raven tells her that it was something Anastasia shouldn't worry about, she enjoyed accompanying her children.
With that all said and done, she turned her laptop off, and was ready to leave. She still had 45 minutes before ten. And Catherin's dance studio wasn't really that far—if she went by taxi, which she had to do if she wanted to arrive on time.
Before leaving the apartment she says her goodbyes to Titus and locked her door after.
Firstly, I have classes again so, I can't update the way I planned (weekly),
It's why this took so long.
And I have already set scenes and how this story goes on,
So you have to stay tuned!
Hope you all enjoy!