A side project to go along with H is for HIVE (which will be updated soon, once school is officially out. I have a couple chapters half done.). This one won't go on for very long, but I realized that if I don't hurry up and write about post-Lightspeed HIVE Five now, I probably never will. So here goes. I own nothing of Teen Titans but I have taken many liberties with the characters, and hope no one minds.

Jinx thought the HIVE Five were officially out of her life. Boy, was she wrong.

It Begins

Jinx was happy. No, she really was. Happier than she'd been in months. Years, even. And why shouldn't she be?

She had a condo. With windows. Wally had laughed at her exclamation of joy when she saw that their condo had real, 2 by five foot windows that let light in and out. But it was real joy. The academy and all the secret hideouts she'd ever been to had been underground. That had been her main attraction to the Titan's Tower during her…other days. A sunny ocean view. The condo she shared with Wally now may not have had an ocean view, but it allowed fresh oxygen and, really, that was all she was asking.

Speaking of Wally, she now had a steady, sexy roommate/hero-partner-person/boyfriend. Wally in the morning to flip pancakes and tease her out of her morning grumpiness. Wally during the day to speed and flip and take out bad guys and flirt with her and treat her to sandwiches at La Bou. Wally at Titan's Tower to keep her company and encourage her to speak up and interact with her erstwhile enemies. Wally in the evening to compliment her cooking and watch movies with and snuggle and hug. And then Wally at night…well. Enough said.

And not only Wally, but the other nearby Titans. Not all of them, of course. She didn't really expect Robin to ever give her a kind look, let alone Raven. And Bumble Bee was…well. There were plenty of the other Titans who were pretty nice. Cyborg was still a little awkward, but he was getting over it. They'd played videogames the other day, and he'd let her win a few times. Argent was an excellent shopping partner, and Speedy was fun when he wasn't trying to get free sex. Aqualad was a perfect gentlemen, and the twins were rather cute. And Jericho was a sweety.

And her new work was…interesting. She was definitely giving the Titans more credit than she ever had. During her…other days, she'd been under the impression that all the Titans did was jerk off in their big stupid tower, live it up with their government funding, and maybe kick a little butt when they were in the mood. But being a Titan was a twenty-four hour job. There was always a crisis somewhere.

But Jinx liked the constant work. If there'd been nothing to do but sit around…who knows? She might have even gone back…

Jinx snorted out loud. Like that was ever going to happen.

She hadn't seen any of the former HIVE Five guys in ages, and was glad for it. They'd broken out of their icy prison ages ago (which had caused some problems for her; Robin had pretty much locked her in the Tower for almost three weeks before Wally could convince him that Jinx was…how had he put it? "Sterile" of all HIVE influence? Something like that.), and hadn't been heard from since. It was a relief for Jinx; as long as the HIVE idiots were out of the picture nobody gave her too much trouble. Even Robin couldn't pin anything on her if nothing was happening.

And then, it happened. After a hard day's hero-ing, she came home expecting to find food in the fridge, and a hot shower with her name on it…

…and instead found a Billy Numeri sitting in her living/dining room, casually sipping a Coke and watching the basketball game.

"Hi, Jinx," The Billy called absently over his shoulder.

Jinx blinked. Then rubbed her eyes. Then blinked again. "Excuse me?" She asked.

He gave her the benefit of a glance over his shoulder. "Hell. O. Jinx. Clear 'nough for ya?"

"Ye-, I mean, no. No! What are you doing here?"

He smacked his lips a few times. "Well…I believe I'm sittin'. An' drinkin'. Oh, an' watchin' the game. D'zat cover everythin', ya think?"

An answer like that had Billy Numerous written all over it. Simple, sarcastic, impenetrable, fucking annoying Billy Numerous.

"Billy, this is…! This-you're-you're, like-like…like!"


"You shouldn't be here!"

He rubbed his chin. "Really?"

"Stop acting stupid on purpose! This is a hero's headquarters!"

Billy glanced left. Then he glanced right. Then he turned back to the TV. "Looks like a condo ta me."

Jinx almost screamed in frustration.

"By the way," He continued, "I'm sorely disappointed with yer drink selection. Where do ya keep the beer?"

Jinx narrowed her eyes. "I don't drink. And neither does Wally."

"Wally! That's h'intimate."

"He'll be here any second. And he'll probably kill you on sight."

"Why? I ain't doin' nothin'."

"You're trespassing!"

"You haven' tol' me ta leave."


"Tha' reminds me," He turned around and propped his chin on his arm, grinning slightly. "How are ya?"

"What the hell does that have to do with anything?"

"I wanna know. An' some others wanna know too. So how are ya?"

This was her chance. This was her chance to make a final statement, and she needed to take it. Jinx jutted her chin out proudly. "I'm perfect. I've never been better."

"Perfect? Well, tha's a relief."

Not mad? Not even sarcastic? "Don't you care?" She snapped.

"Tha' would be why I asked. Listen, darlin', d'ya need a screwdriver or somethin'? Yer practic'ly leakin' lose nuts and bolts out yer ears." He frowned. "Ya got a hangover?"

"No! I don't drink!"

"Then tighten things up in th' attic. Yer bein' awful slow, ya know?" He took a last slurp from the Coke, emptying it, and flattened the can against his forehead. "Well, it's good tha' yer good. See-More was freakin'."

"But…" Jinx protested stupidly. "But I…"

"Left. Yeah." He switched off the TV and stood.

"So you…"

"Nothin' personal was what you said, right darlin'? Well, you know us. We're lit'ral-types." He grinned at her. "Work is work, but play is play. So we c'n still visit. Righ'?"

Work is work, but play is play. She could have killed him. She could have hexed him to death right then and there. In fact, why hadn't she yet?

"It is not! I left! Like, for good! As in, I don't want to see you guys anymore!"

"Well, shucks, darlin'," Billy chuckled, heading back to the fridge. "Tha's too bad."

"Too bad? Too bad for you! Get out of here! And get away from our fridge!"

"Our?" He frowned at her. "Oh, you an' Wally. Sorry, fergot."

"Will you cut that out? Just-just…" Act mad. Get annoyed me with me. Act like you care. Be penetrable for once. React!

He closed the refrigerator door. "Well, if yer doin' good, than my work here is done." He turned and patted her lightly on the head. "See ya in a few weeks, darlin'."

Jinx ground her teeth before carefully asking, "A. Few. Weeks?"

"The nex' time it's my turn. Th' others are gonna wanna see ya too."

That was the last straw.


Billy blinked.

Then grinned.

"Say hi to the speed-devil for me, 'kay? Thanks, darlin'."

He patted her head again, and strolled to the door. When he was gone, Jinx threw a hex at the door, jamming the lock in place.

Why him? Why now? Robin would blow a gasket, and Bumble Bee would give her that look. Like, "I know where you stand in all this. Don't play the princess, bitch." Would Cyborg stop warming up to her? And Wally…oh god. What would Wally say? What could she tell him?

Billy had said there would be a "next time". What the hell did that mean?


"So what?"

"How's she doing?"

Billy thought for a second.

"All right. But not the greatest."

See-More sucked air through his teeth. "What do you mean?"

Billy shrugged. "She didn' hex me or nothin'. I went in there fully h'expectin' to come out in a body bag, but she didn' touch me. She yelled plenty, though." He smirked. "Who knows? She mighta been happy to see a familiar face. I dunno."

"That decides it. I want to go next."

"Hold yer horses, lover boy. Give it a couple days. She needs adjustin' time." He turned back to the TV. "I dunno. I dunno what to tell you guys. It's weird. I expected her ta be diff'ren', but…somethin' wasn't right. I think…"

See-More turned. "Yeah? What do you think?"

Billy shifted deeper into the sofa cushion. "I think I'm thirsty. Get me a beer, huh?"