1112/Mirror Mirror, Nevermore.

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Mirror Mirror, Nevermore.
Date of Scene: 11 April 2020
Location: Titan's Tower—Lobby
Synopsis: Old wounds heal.  New wounds are opened—and some of those heal too.  People start shipping unbidden, and that's probably going to the the worst part.
Cast of Characters: Caitlin Fairchild, Gar Logan, Dick Grayson, Terry O'Neil, Kian, Naomi McDuffie, Kate Bishop, Donna Troy, Rachel Roth

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Dinner bell.
    There are plenty of alerts and sounds that used to go out to the Titans.  Text alerts, banal notifications and updates.  Plenty of security notes from Nightwing, back when he was Robin and obsessed with all things security related.
    But the dinner bell was its own thing.  Early on, it meant pizza or bulk takeout.  Later, it turned into a notification for folks to come in from their evening patrols, or even just to visit from their homes.  Sometimes it turned into game nights, or chat messages among friends, or phone calls.
    Sometimes it was just a reminder of a little sense of familial routine, even for the folks too far away to participate.
    It's been a long time since anyone rang the dinner bell at the Tower, but that's precisely what's happening when the alert goes out.  And as people arrive, there's a familiar scent coming from the living quarters.  Home-made food.  Authentic homemade, too, not something ordered in or delivered.
    The lights aren't all on.  The Tower isn't all lit up.  It's still a little decrepit on the exterior.  Not from a lack of care per se, but perhaps from a lack of concern.
    But in the habitation level, there are lights on, and people arrive to discover a veritable feast being set out at the big table where they all used to congregate—with Caitlin busily putting the last touches on a truly epic spread of food, and one or two volunteers helping her with place settings and utensils.
    "Okay, bread's done, brisket's ready, pies are—"  She peeks in the oven.  "In process," Caitlin mutters, and wipes her hands on her apron.  "Guess now we just wait and see who shows up."

Gar Logan has posed:
    Dinner bell?  Was that the dinner bell?
    What the hell?
    Gar was taking a nap after a hopeful moment or two with Nightwing's video message and his own response, and it was a sleep filled with good dreams for the most part.  Things might just be on the upswing.
    Then, dinner bell!
    Soon, a golden retriever—scratch that, a green retriever appears in the vicinity of the kitchen, an eager look of anticipation on his face, tail lashing behind as he sits dutifully, if not patiently.  "I heard the bell!  I haven't heard the bell in a long time but I heard the bell!"
    Garvlovian response?  Check.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    When Nightwing reactivated everyone's comms and sent out his message, he wasn't sure what to expect.  Eventually, however, there was a response.  And while Gar's response had him wondering exactly what his next step was—it was when Caitlin sent out the little chime for the dinner bell that the former Titan leader finally remembered to breath.  Figuratively that is.
    He wasn't sure if he was invited in that.  But he knows Caitlin enough to know that she would want him there.  He has patrol in Bludhaven tonight, so when he arrives, it's via one of the Batwings, and he's already in costume, his mask on.  There's still a few people that don't know who he is beneath the mask.  And for the good of the Family, he's not taken it off.
    After arriving at the Tower, he looks around and makes his way up to the habitat level.  He's seen the changes, the cleaning that's gone on since the decomissioned state that he saw the Tower in when he first returned.  He glances out the window to the shoreline.  And while he's not announcing his presence, he's hard to miss in the black and blues of his costume.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    It wasn't a planned stop by the Tower, but something more of spur-of-the-moment.  Terry had been visiting his mother in New York, but decided to get away for the day after some questions started getting a little too… personal.  Parents are normally inquisitive about the private lives of their children—but a private investigator and a mother?  That was dangerous, so dangerous.
    Terry pulls up to the Tower parking lot and heads to the door.  It occurs to him that maybe he should have let Gar know he was coming, but then he decides he'll make it a surprise.  No harm done!
    As he walks through the entrance, though, he is assaulted by a feast to the senses, especially the olfactory one, and he stops.  Someone is cooking, somewhere.  His stomach growls, having skipped out on lunch in order to successfully avoid questions as to what exactly he had been doing in Suicide Slum when he got shot.  He decides to make his way to the kitchen, intent to check out the source of that smell.  Perhaps Gar had ordered take-out.
    "Fee Fie Fo Fum!" he calls out as he heads over to the kitchen, "Gar, did you suddenly become domestic—"
    …and stops dead in his tracks when he sees a Gar (well, a green dog Gar, so a gArf), but then there are also two others there that he has not met.
    "…Uh… did I… should I go?  This looks like a gathering of… I should go, yeah?"

Kian has posed:
    Well, one alert is the same as any other, as far as Kían knows.  He has no idea if it means 'everyone gather' or 'a tornado is coming' or what.
    Well, he's on the roof, so he can see there's no tornado.  He glances towards En, with whom he'd been flying above the tower, hoping she knows what this noise means, and spirals down toward the main entrance.  "Iss… nnh.  I am not haf wor'd.  Shoul' see, yis?"

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Flying with Kian has been educational.  Sure, he doesn't move at Mach five like she can but going slow has helped her better understand how to move in the air.  She has been going about it all wrong with her high speed approach.  Of course, then the… alarm goes off?  She has no idea what it is either so she looks over to Kian and shrugs, "I don't know what it means, Kian," she states and simply lands with him and goes inside.
    "I don't think it sounds dangerous," she states simply as she goes inside and walks with him into the main area, "It is… ummm…."  She pauses and looks to Terry and then to the green dog and then to Caitlin and then to… is that Nightwing?!  She suddenly feels a little uncomfortable and unsure of things despite her ostentatious outfit.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate has taken steps.  Prepatory steps.  In this case she bought an expensive oceanview condo in St. Martin under the shell company she setup to buy all her equipment.  It is honestly remarkably how much a sixteen year old with near limitless wealth and an father who doesn't care and is running his own quasi-legal publishing empire can accomplish.
    She heads over to the tower as soon as she gets a sign that people are gathering because the <cough> surveillance setup is proving to be worth every penny.  Honestly this will be much easier when she gets the official comm.  In the meantime this works.
    She hops on the bike purple helmet as effective as her sunglasses for masking her features.  It is amazing how much one can get away with by people's expectations and simply line breaks of the face.  Why no one thinks a spoiled NY princess could be a superhero.  Glasses are a remarkable disguise really.  Kate wonders if anyone else has figured this out.  Glasses and people's own perceptions.
    Anyhow she speeds over, buzzing the lone paparazzi staking the place out and parking near the door.  She just walks right up and punches in the door code Gar gave her.  When it works… internally there is a yissSSsss from Kate.  Externally the helmet masks any expression that would be used for potential blackmail.  She does take it off though after she is inside setting it on the bar downstairs, sliding her 'sunglasses' on and heading for the elevator bow and gear worn still.  She is pretty sure she can't go to a lot of these floors so instead she hits the communal hab level and wisks on upwards.
    She steps out and looks around "That smells delicious… hey Terry," to his back really since he is at the edge of the kitchen.  "Is Gar a good cook?" not having noticed the green retriever in there past Terry yet.
    She also hasn't noticed Nightwing yet, damn bat-ninjas.

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin picks up a piece of brisket and flicks it in an arcing lob at the Gartrieverdoodle to catch.  "It's absolutely amazing, you didn't hear me cooking for the last hour, and yet you heard the dinner bell," she says.  Caitlin's tone suggests a vastly insincere scolding at odds with the grin on her face.
    More people arrive; friends and strangers both.  Caitlin hesitates a little, clearly in her safe personal space that is the kitchen.  She's spent a lot of time there over the previous years.  It's where she taught herself ot cook.
    The why she learned, is gathering right now.
    "Uh… welcome, everyone," she says, raising her voice to be heard.  "I guess I don't know all the new faces, but if you're friends of the Titans, then you're friends of mine.  I'm Caitlin, if… folks don't know me."  Seems unlikely.
    "No standing on ceremony, everyone grab a plate and file through the buffet line.  Gar goes second to last," she adds, and starts untying her apron to hang it up.  Underneath it, she's dressed in comfortable blue athletic leggings with mesh panels, and a t-shirt that proclaims 'Pro Gamer' in classic Mario bricks.  She takes just a second to pull her ponytail apart and bind it back out of place away from her face, and smiles encouragingly at the unfamiliar faces to step up and serve themselves before heading to the large table in the common room.

Gar Logan has posed:
    "Bells are louder!  Bells mean food!"  Gar may have been dreaming of food when some of the smells reached him, and they do sometimes have a way of spreading throughout the place, but someone else was doing the cooking and that worked out just fine.  He leaps up to snatch the brisket in one gulp, minimal chewing.  "Yum!"
    Then…he pauses.  There's Nightwing.  And Terry.  And a couple of the newer ones they've been talking to.  And suddenly…half a dozen people or more.  He morphs back to normal, dressed casually again, saying, "I know.  No paws on the table."  Caitlin gets a gasp.  "Second to last?  There'll be no food left!"  But if he went earlier in the line, the same might be the case.  "I'm, like, on level 200.  Obviously!"
    Still, he gives the others a muted wave.  "Hey, guys.  Everyone."

Dick Grayson has posed:
    "I was more curious as to what was happening," Nightwing admits from where he stands and watches the others.  "I have patrol tonight.  But I may drop by for leftovers later, if there are any."
    "Thanks, Caitlin."  He remembered their conversation from a few weeks prior, and after a few more moments to make sure no one gets slaughtered by the Garhound of the Apocalypse, he's preparing to head back out.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry says reflexively "Hey Hawky," while still blinking in Cait's general direction.  As people come in and gather, the redhead says "…wow, I go home for the weekend and there's a whole bunch of new people."  He waves at Naomi, and then follows her eyes—and notices the Batninja, whose presence he hadn't noticed before because sneaky people be sneaky.  "That's Nightwing!" he says excitedly to Kate behind him, as low as he can but clearly not low enough, "And that's—"
    And Cait does the official welcoming thing, and Terry can't help but say, "Er, are you sure about that?  If Gar goes at the end, there probably won't be any leftovers," as Nightwing prepares to head out, "You might want to set a doggy bag aside."  Beat.  "No offense, Gar."  He has the impulse to introduce himself to Nightwing—but he's a Batperson.  Batpeople are kind of intimidating, and according to Lois they always seem to give the impression you are holding them up from stopping the Riddler from robbing an old lady in Gotham or something*.  He doesn't want to be one of those annoying get-in-the-way people.
    But on the matters of food, he decides to take the social plunge and heads over to Caitlin first, "Hi, we haven't been introduced but I'm Terry.  I'm a friend of Gar's," he extends a hand to her, "I work at the Planet.  I totally know who you are!"  he doesn't quite manage to hide the excitement on his voice.  "And I don't believe I've met you either!" he says to Naomi.
*footnote: Not Lois' actual words.

Kian has posed:
    Kian looks a little overwhelmed—so many people, including several he has never seen before.  So he hangs back, on the fringes of the group… until the food aromas grab him by the nose and lead him closer.  Nothing is immediately recognizable, but it smells good, and even though his rhy'thar has released him from the obligation to eat, he may choose to, and he's definitely thinking of choosing to.  Even so, he selects only veggies, no dressing, which he picks at slowly, one piece at a time.
    He gravitates towards Gar and Terry, since he knows them better.  A lot of the discussion has already eluded him—his language lessons haven't gotten that far yet—so he quietly asks Gar's permission for contact so the birdman can pick up the translation from his mind directly.
    This is all very odd.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    A blink again at the reactions from everyone and then she looks over to Caitlin and smiles, "Thank you," she states simply enough and then blinks over at Terry and smiles at him, "I go by N for now," she states simply enough and then looks over at Nightwing with a wide blink, "Wow, leaving already.  I haven't even had a chance to, well, introduce myself but I guess you heard that."  She points to herself and Terry before looking around and moving to the food, "Good to meet you all anyway."  She nods her head as she gathers up some food on her plate, getting a bit of it all and moving over to the table and smiling at Kian briefly as she chooses a spot.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate wiggles her purple archery gloved fingers towards Caitlin.  "Hi there, I mean… I know of you for certain.  Hey Gar."  Having already greeted Terry and well she was going to greet Kian and Naomi who she doesn't know but that is about when Nightwing speaks up and she notices him finally, startling just a smidge.
    Thankfully this is before she has a plate full of food in her hands.
    "Oh… hey… another person I know of… she blinks and makes a bigger wave sort of encompassing the room now.  "Hawkeye, or 2.0.  or Hawky… hawkingbird… no one seems to use Hawkeye so as long as it is at least adjacent to my callsign I'll probably manage to realize you are talking to me and go with it."
    Kate peels the gloves off tucking them in a pocket and walks over to look at the spread of food.  "This looks and smells great Caitlin."  And Kate is bound and determined to do her best to just dive into this situation, which means picking up a plate and going first if she has to.
    Play it cool Kate, what would Captain America do.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Three Years Ago

    The scene of Titans gathered around the big table in the meeting room fades from the light of narrative and then grows bright again.  If this were a movie, this would be what is known as a composition match cut, the camera fixed, the location the same, just the details changed to show the passing of time.  The table is there, the food is present, though now it it's a Chinese takeout.  Some of the people are different, but some are the same.  There's no Terry, no Kate, no Kian, no Naomi.  Dick, Gar and Caitlin are there, but their faces are a little younger.  Other faces are seen at the table too.  Raven, who today didn't answer the bell.  Hank, larger than life, who retired from heroing after Doomsday.  Donna, the Titan who had missed Doomsday.
    Don and Kole.  Smiling and laughing with the rest, their fates already carved in stone.
    Donna, who had been unusually quiet through the meal, speaks up.  Her voice, slightly accented with that odd southern European lilt, cuts through the chatter.  "Guys?  I've got an announcement to make."  She keeps her eyes fixed on her noodles, unable to meet anyone's gaze.  "I told you all I would be leaving for Northern Turkey at the end of the year to complete my training with the Knights of Ilium.  I'm sorry, but… plans have changed.  I just heard from the Elders.  I have been ordered back sooner.  I'm sorry.  I have to leave you in the morning."
    The table fell silent, the mood ruined.
    Dick had attempted to brighten things up again, tried to turn the meal into a farewell banquet, but the efforts hadn't quite worked.  They had talked, reminisced long into the evening about the good times and the bad, and eventually said their goodnights.
    The following morning, Donna was gone.  Gar had seen her leave during the night.  She had come to find him and tell him she was going quietly because she couldn't stand goodbyes, but she had sought him out for a few final words.  He was the youngest and the newest of the Titans; also perhaps the one who most needed the Titans as a family.  She had promised him she was coming back.  A year, maybe a little longer, but she would return.  She had also slipped a note beneath Raven's door, but that was the last any of the Titans had heard of her since (apart from Caitlin, but that's another story…)

    The present

    The match cut cuts back.  There are new faces and faces missing, but there's some of that same sense of togetherness returned.  For the first time in three years, it really feels like maybe the Titans are getting back together.
    Then the alarm goes off.
    That's something that has happened during team meals before.  There have been those who have no respect for the Titan's down time and pick the most inconvenient times to attack the tower, though usually it was some false alarm.  This time the alarm indicates an intruder on the roof.  Then entering the building.  Then in the elevator shaft.  It all happens in very quick succession, with little time for anyone to react.  Whoever the intruder is, they are fast.
    A figure comes to land in the open doorway of the empty elevator shaft, the one that used to be used by the team's flyers when they were too impatient to wait for the elevator to arrive.  She straightens, takes a few steps forwards, and stops with a sharp intake of breath.
    She's dressed in black jeans, a leather jacket, and calf-length suede boots.  Dark hair tumbles around her shoulders and dark, blinking eyes look at the gathering, wide at the best of times, and wider now.
    There's no silver-and-black armor.  No silver buckler, no short sword, none of the trademarks of Troia.  There's no doubting who it is though.
    Donna looks around at the gathered faces.  In a voice of smoke and honey, her accent a little stronger than it used to be, she speaks quietly.  "Uh… hi.  Everyone?  I'm… back.  Um.  Where's…?"

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Everything was fine and dandy.  Everyone was happy, and they were allowed to be happy, and the idea that everything was about to become very, very terrible, very, very swiftly might even be the last thing on everyone's minds.
    Then there's Donna, wandering in and ruining it for everybody.  She barely gets more than a few steps in, before the walls of the tower are practically oozing darkness, seeping a starless sky that almost seems just as fluid as the metaphor would indicate.  All of the heat leaves the room—what lights are present flicker a few times and are then consumed—not merely snuffed out, but consumed utterly, fading into the liquid black as it spills into the bulbs, like running paint.
    The voice echoes through the meeting room, so loud in its apparent fury and hurt that the windows—beyond which there is now only seeming desolation, consisting of ashen soil and dead trees—rattle in their frames.
    "How DARE you?!" It cries, sounding less and less human with every half-syllable.  "How dare you return here, 'TROIA.'" The way it calls her codename—it seems almost mocking.  "You should have stayed on your island."  Four red eyes split open a portion of the darkness, around where the ceiling would be, if it still existed.  Waves of dread spill into the room, seeking their way into the hearts and minds present.  Fear so strong it can utterly paralyze, rooting a person in place.  Empathy, weaponized.
    The shadow grows talons, long, great and sharp, and the face—Raven's face, twisted and warped, takes its place between them.  The lunge of this… Raven-faced monster… Is like lightning—were it to have actually reached Donna… There's no telling what it might have done.
    However, just as swiftly as it all happens, it begins to stop—unlike before, the shadow doesn't quite retreat.  As soon as it lunges for Donna, the taloned monstrosity begins to struggle against the very shadows that make up its very being: As if it's being sucked up by a vacuum.  It howls and screams, clearly struggling to close those last few centimeters and take its best shot at tearing Donna apart, but it doesn't get the chance.  Eventually, the gap widens, as the room regains its brightness and the shadow begins funneling up the walls, into the cracks, and up through the roof towards the upper floors.
    What is left is Raven.
    She seems—different, perhaps?  The hooded sweater she's wearing is colored oddly, as if the blues and purples seeped out in the wash and faded away into this deep gray.  Her face is marked by running makeup, long streaks of black mascara having been swept aside by fresh tears.
    "Please.  It's been loose for too long.  We can't."
    And then, she is a small cloud of fog, that is swept up and away with the rest.

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan allows whatever Kian needs, since it will help him and it's something they're used to.  He gives Terry a wave, flashing a grin, and it's one that lingers with all the faces around, some old, some new.  This… this is good.  It gives him hope that there's something more to all of this that could actually work.
    The first sign of something out of the ordinary is the activity from the roof.  He begins to move as if he's going to go investigate, then whatever it is is inside, then coming closer, then it's revealed.  "Donna?  Holy crap!  It's you!  Where have you—"
    And then, it all changes.
    The darkness.  The cold.  The four eyes in the ceiling, or what had been the ceiling.  Those feelings that spread, that chill to the bone, and the shadows that twist and morph into something menacing, but then it's fading, and he stares at what's left behind.
    "Raven!  What's going on?"  She looks… different, and it feels like something is wrong.  Just as he forgets all about filling his plate, which takes a lot to do, and moves toward her instead, she's… gone?
    "Uh, guys?  I think something is seriously wrong here," he says.  Captain Obvious is on the scene.

Kian has posed:
    For one split second, before Kían breaks contact and drops to one knee with a pained cry, Gar will be able to sense some of what the birdman did—the psychic wave of fury and fear that blasted through his mind at the appearance of Raven.  His palms are pressed tight agains his temples as if trying to physically block out the mental noise.  When he finally gets back to his feet, he is pale and shaking, breathing hard.  "Ash tyr'tái?" he asks hoarsely, then focuses enough to get it out in his broken English: "Hw-hwat iss?"

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    There is a moment where Terry simply can't even breathe.  Or maybe he just simply can't even, actually.  The darkness floods everything, and then there is that voice out of the shadows.  He doesn't even get to say hi to Troia, but stands there absolutely still.
    And then it is all over (or at least, this stage of it is) and the brightness returns.  The fear that had paralyzed his heart is still there, and there is an ashen taste in his mouth.
    Everything was in danger of being swallowed by darkness.
    "Bad news" he says to Kian's question.  Eloquently, even.  His hand slips into his jeans and clasps tightly around the small, portable mirror he has taken to carry with him.  His other hand reaches for Gar's shoulder.  Not because he needs steadying.  Nope.

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin brightens when she spots Donna and moves to intercept her friend with a beaming smile and an offered hug.  But the greeting to Donna is interrupted by the screeching rage literally pouring off the walls and ceiling.  Caitlin instinctively puts her back to Donna's shoulders and tenses herself in a fighting position.  The horrifying spectre makes Caitlin's eyes go wide as dinner plates; this isn't a foe she can punch into submission.  She clutches the pendant under her shirt, suspended on a thin golden chain, and merely stands there with wild-eyed horror until Raven's eldritch wrath evaporates along with the tear-streaked visage.
    "Is anyone hurt?" Caitlin asks, a little more practically, and turns to look at Donna before doing a quick head count of the others present.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate was settling to sit with a plate full of food, when the alarm goes off.  She tenses up.  It is obvious what an alarm is after all and that she should be… well alarmed.  She does set the plate down and as she straightens she draws the bow slung across her back and plucks an arrow out of the quiver.
    The whole taking it off before sitting was about to happen anyways and she can be all sheepish if this isn't an emergency situation later and just set it down casual and put the arrow back right.  Her eyes flick about following the changing alarms and shifting to face the doorway that Donna comes through in the end.  But.  That isn't an intruder right.  She glances to the others to confirm.
    Kate starts to relax the tension, just beginning to unnock the arrow when stuff literally goes to hell.  She looks around alarmed as things go all horror movie and the darkness consumes the light and the heat, rendering her glasses only able to see the people's signatures around her as they try to compensate.
    Which is when the dread spills in making her freeze where she stands, a little noise hissing between her lips.  A rattly noise of panic… and when the sheer weight of that weaponized dread is lifted and the lights return… Kate just collapses back against the table, bracing herself there so she doesn't fall down, though that arrow does clatter to the floor at her feet.
    Kate is really having a moment of not remembering what Captain America would do.  She has no powers just plucky determination and that was the most absolutely scary thing she has ever experienced.  "What… was that…" she whispers glancing at Terry since he answered Kian.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    The question, is anyone hurt is likely getting an answer.  The moment the fear flows in, Naomi loses that constant concentration she has grown used to doing.  She has a strong will, not a weak person but nothing like this has ever happened to her before.  Not even facing her parent's killer was the same as this.  She pushes back from the table first, gritting her teeth and letting out a wince even as her eyes glow brightly.  Her chest bursts almost seemingly literaly as light flares up from her like a fire.  She falls out of the chair, screaming in a pain as she lays there on the floor.  Metal near her whips up into the air and floats around briefly as flares and flashes of light go up around her.
    Only after the darkness goes away does Naomi start groaning and grunting with concentration.  Light flickering and flashing around her.  There's black on the floor around her from what amount to scorch marks as the flaring, burning light stops erupting from her slowly and she curls up into a ball on the floor, letting out small pained cries as she shudders in place.  She's lost control before, but always quickly regained it.  Now, she had to endure it and it is difficult.

Donna Troy has posed:
    If there's one Titan who you'd want to be facing a lightning-fast lunge of talons, it would be Donna.  Donna who's reactions are also lightning, who has been known to dodge bullets.
    Yet Donna does not attempt to dodge the talons.  She tenses, but she doesn't move.  Whether it's the sudden overwhelming aura of dread or some other emotion that roots her to the spot, she faces the talons—and is spared.
    When the shadows peel back, Donna does move.  She takes a step closer, and holds her hand out towards Raven.  "Rae, I?"  Her eyes fall on Raven's faded appearance, and seek out Raven's eyes beneath the hood.  She draws a ragged breath.
    As Raven fades to mist, Donna's fingers close on nothing.  She looks down at her fist, clutching uselessly, then raises her head to the ceiling.  "RAE!  Let me explain?  please?  Please Rae, come back?"
    Donna takes a step back again, bumping into Caitlin.  She turns to glance at her old friend, her face a mask of misery, then clutches her arms around herself and shivers, as if only now suddenly feeling that sudden sense of terrible cold that had gripped the room some moments earlier.

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin reaches up to stabilize Donna.  Not so much that the Amazon needs it physically (although it's hard to find someone sturdier than Caitlin), but to offer emotional support to her friend's jangling nerves.  She makes eye contact with Donna and nods once, clearly afraid and on edge but rallying with a show of strength.
    "Uh… everyone, that was Raven," Caitlin says, trying to keep her voice calm.  "One of the original Titans.  She's, um… She sometimes has a little bit of a temper."  Caitlin, the diplomat.  "None of you are at risk or in harm's way here in the Tower, any more than you would be in the city."
    It's not a lie; if Raven really blew her lid in a big way, there's a high probability no one on the Eastern Seaboard would be safe.  So… as good here as anywhere, right?

Gar Logan has posed:
    "I don't know about that," Gar says, mainly to Caitlin as he looks around at all of them.  "I've seen this before, but I haven't seen it like this before.  I'm worried about her.  All that time she was the only one here, she was probably getting worse and worse.  I barely got through to her the last time, but I still haven't seen a lot of her since then."
    He's not certain what caused the immediate reaction to Donna, or rather, Troia's return, and she's getting a good, long look that's a mixture of eagerness at her being here mixed with stronger apprehension, and he bites his lip as he's one of the closer ones to where Raven had been, with Terry and Kian near as well.  "I'm not sure this is done yet," he says, voice lower as he stares in Naomi's direction.  "Are you… gonna be okay?"

Kian has posed:
    Kían takes a step backwards, wings spreading wide.  He does not bolt from the room.
    Also, that faint blue glow he sometimes has when agitated?  It's bright, and slowly growing brighter.  How else does one hold the darkness at bay?

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate is remembering what her therapist told her after her mom's death.  Centering herself as best she can.  Breathing nice and slow.  There are Titans here.  She can see them.  Count them.  One is green.  Little things as she crouches down and picks up the arrow she dropped.
    Dropping it back into the quiver she straightens fully back to her feet and looks at Donna and then to the others.  "Not over.  That is swell."  She pauses; yes even in times of danger, she has some sarcasm in her blood.  Her attention goes to Caitlin the diplomat.  "What do we do then… she seems… very upset."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry takes a few breaths to stabilize his heartbeat.  His hand suddenly grips Gar's shoulder tighter, almost as if to keep the Titan from running over to the elevator to see if another hug will do it.
    You never knew, with Gar.
    "What we do is… talk to her."  He pauses, and then says, a little stronger, "Someone needs to talk to her.  But not us," he looks at Kate, "She doesn't know us from Adam."
    He looks over at Troia, frowning a little.
    "You said you had something to explain to her…."

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Gasping a little as she finally has her control back, Naomi shivers a little and pushes herself up slowly to a sitting position.  She looks over at Kian and then around quickly, blinking as she looks around.  That is when she realizes Gar was talking to her and she looks to him, "Oh…." She shifts some and slowly pushes up, "I'll be fine… probably."  She shudders a little and winces internally as she stands up, "Just, not used to that," she states softly and nods her head, "I am fine."  She nods again before looking over toward Donna and Caitlin and then around again.
    "So… is Raven a ghost?" she asks of no one in particular as she looks over to Terry and then back to Donna and Caitlin, "I mean, I didn't believe in ghosts but… that seemed like some serious Poltergeist stuff…."

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    "I think for now, everyone should sit and eat," Caitlin advises the newcomers.  "Before the food gets cold.  Huh?  Okay," she says, and breaks from Donna with a quick squeeze of reassurance for her friend's shoulder.
    "Talking to Raven when she's in a mood, it's, um… not something for the new kids," she suggests, and puts on a very positive-energy smile.  "Honestly, this isn't even the first time she's lost her temper liked that.  Gar went through a phase where he was moulting and shedding," she says, conspiratorially.  "Everyone had hay fever and allergies at the same time, it was terrible," she says, with a mournful glance skywards.  "Not enough air filters in the world."

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna places her hand over Caitlin's and gives it a quick squeeze.  She smiles a grateful smile towards her then looks around at the people gathered.  She seems to be having some difficulty gathering her thoughts.
    "She's not a ghost," she says eventually, replying to Naomi.  "She's… hurting.  She has been hurting for a long time."  She gives Naomi a blank look.  Her eyes seek out the purple-clad archer and the glowing bird too, the other two she doesn't recognize.  Her eyes settle on Terry.  "I have things to explain to everyone," she acknowledges.
    Donna's attention goes to the ones she knows.  Caitlin, Gar, Dick.  She looks from one to the other wordlessly, then shakes her head.  Finally she turns to face the staircase that leads up to the dormitory corridor.  "Maybe it's best if you got the new guys out of here.  I'll go and speak to her."  She takes a deep breath and steps forwards, walking slowly but with determination up the staircase.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate looks skeptical, though those 'sunglasses' hide a lot of the expression, it isn't impossible to read.  Also part of her definitely takes offense at being called a kid.  Though to be fair to Caitlin she does look about sixteen if one had to really weigh it.
    There is a bit of determination a she picks up a roll from her plate and takes a bite and chews slowly before swallowing it.  Right.  Settle in and eat.  Mhm.
    Then her attention shifts to Donna when she talks about getting the new guys out of here and starts to walk off.  "I mean.  Not saying you are going to need backup.  As Terry says she doesnn't know us… but that… yeah.  It might be good if people hang out here while you… do what you need to do."  Which is pretty brave of Kate after the ordeal and all.  The TERROR of the encounter so far.  Maybe she is just being spurred on by being called a kid by Caitlin.  Offering backup against an existential terror.  Sort of.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    When Raven lashes out at Donna, Nightwing had sort of… expected it.  It's how she's been every time someone's been here.  But at Donna's request that they usher out the new ones, he shakes his head.  "You want them to be Titans, they want to be Titans.  They need to know the whole story, Donna," he responds, a not unkind smile to the Amazon as Caitlin handles comforting her.
    And when Donna volunteers to go alone, there's a sharp rebuke from Nightwing.  "No.  I left Gar alone here last time I stepped in this place because Rachel had a temper.  I'm not walking away from her this time," he comments, jaw setting, but he does pause at the table.  He takes off his utility belt, and sets it there.  He won't go in there armed.  He glances aside to Donna and gives her a firm nod of his head.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    A look over at Caitlin and Naomi looks over at the place she was sitting at, looks at the chair, and looks at the floor, "I'm gonna… need a new plate and a new chair."  She then frowns, "And for that I apologize but… sometimes my powers get the better of me."  She then blinks over at Kian and notes his silence and glowing, "Hey…."
    Naomi slowly walks over toward Kian and smiles at him, "You all right, Kian?" she asks and then looks at the others and then to Donna.  Then Nightwing steps in and she clears her throat, "Honestly… I want to be a Titan but there's something up here.  It needs to be brought out, not allowed to fester."  She nods her head, "I know a lot about letting things fester.  Trust me."

Kian has posed:
    "Do not know," Kían says quietly, still glowing, and rubbing his temple as if to clear the remaining shadows from his mind.  "I am haf not fel't that ever… iss in my min'd… iss har'd to keep out."  He stumbles his way through his statement, and not because of his unfamiliarity with the language.
    He does not move to leave.  He doesn't approach, but he doesn't try to leave.  He knows if he lets himself run, he may never stop.

Donna Troy has posed:
    "You don't know the whole story either, D… Nightwing."  Donna shakes her head as she mounts the stairs.  "I haven't really been honest with any of you.  But this isn't some enemy for the new guys to face.  It's Rae.  She's our friend, and she's hurting.  "
    Donna stops at the top of the stairs, looking down at everyone.  "I don't know if it's better if we go together or go alone.  I only know that I have to go, and being with me when I go might not be a good idea for you.  "
    It's not exactly a rally-the-troops speech.  It's not even particularly informative, but it's all she stops to say before turning back and marching up the corridor to knock on Rae's door.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    "Abandonments and broken hearts?" Nightwing asks, a lift of a lens on his mask.  He looks up at Donna, as if he needs to be told that he's right on what most likely this is as he moves to grab his belt.  "Then we all make the trip."  He says it, offering no question on the matter as he snaps the belt back in place, the escrima sticks set beneath his forearms for an easy draw.
    Once he's settled, he's moving to follow Donna up the stairs.  "You only have to explain the personal part if you have to, Donna."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry reaches over and pats Kian's shoulder gently.  «It's this dream, not you, that's bound to go away,» is what comes through the tactile telepathy.  But as Donna begins to mount the stairs, the redhead peels away, hand clasped tightly around the mirror in his pocket as if it were a talisman of sorts.
    "It's a little too late to let bad ideas stop me," Terry says, trying to mask the tremolo in his voice for a humorous lilt.  It's somewhat sucessful.  "Besides, I thought the motto was Titans Together, not Titans Hang In The Kitchen While I Go Deal With This."
    The redhead heads for the stairs after Troia and Nightwing.
    He's just supposed to be a reporter, right?

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin dithers.  "Listen, you go talk to Rae," she offers to Donna and Nightwing.  "I'll stay down here with Gar, and anyone else who wants to stay behind."  A reassuring smile is flashed around.  "Besides, there's pie gonna be ready soon for folks who want it," she offers.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Two things cross Kate's mind.
    One did Terry just refer to himself as a Titan, thought he was the cub reporter sidekick here.
    Two did he just call out everyone else who isn't going to take Caitlin up on pie and safety.
    What the hell Terry.
    She takes a deep breath, another bite of her roll, then picks up her bow to sling it over her back and shaking her head follows after Terry.  "Someone needs to make sure he doesn't die…" is all she mutters to herself.  "OR ask for an interview…."

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    "I don't know much about that, Kian, but I do know that someone needs people right now," she states simply and then Naomi looks at the floor briefly before shrugging, "And I'm not gonna let a little pain and suffering stop me from trying to halt the pain and suffering of another."  She looks to Kian and offers a smile before turning to walk toward the stairs as well, "And I'm going… if only because I'm not gonna let my first night hanging out with the Titans be ruined by me playing chicken."  She nods her head, "I'll help where I can.  I can make a great light if need be."

Kian has posed:
    {Dreams still leave marks behind sometimes,} Kían replies before Terry breaks contact—it 'sounds' like the birdman's normal speaking voice in his mind, but not stumbling or hesitant or uncertain of a word.
    Well, okay, and there's a wrapper of 'what in the name of all the Gods do I think I'm doing?' tangled up around that as well.  Alas, the vagaries of telepathy.
    With that, Kían… follows along, still glowing, no idea what he's supposed to do, driven forward mainly by the fact that he simply cannot conceive of one person ending another person's life, so this can't be that dangerous, regardless of the tendrils of black fear he still hasn't fully dislodged from his mind.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna looks back at Dick and gives him a sheepish grimace.  "Something like that.  But… it's more complicated.  I'll explain things properly when… things are calmer.  I mean for a start, I'm not actually Donna."
    On that cliffhanger, she turns to the others who have joined her at the top of the stairs.  "Last chance to run," she says, the faintest of smiles appearing on her face for the first time since she entered the tower.  She raises her fist, and knocks.
    "Rae?  It's Donna.  And the others.  Please can we talk?  I'm… sorry.  For not being here.  And for other things.  Please Rae?"

Rachel Roth has posed:
    The journey up to Raven's room is just a little haunted.
    The voice echoes in the hallways, mostly for the sake of Troia.  It's still that sad tone—the lilting, on-the-verge-of-sobbing, depressed Raven that showed up mere moments ago.
    "Have you ever had someone whisper to you in your sleep?  Nobody ever thinks you'll remember, but it always lingers there, in your subconscious.  Lingering there, these sweet little nothings.  Someone felt something at Raven in her sleep.  They were close enough that it mattered.  They felt they wanted to run."  There's a pause, there, as Donna's hand raises to knock.  That voice pipes up one more time.
    "It's that feeling that let it out.  Three years now."  Apparently she's really good at doling out the guilt.
    The knock elicits a response, not from the person inside, but from the door.  It slides open somewhat languidly—a little slower than it ought to.  As if it hasn't in a while and needs to kick the dust out.  You know, the dust that isn't anywhere in the tower?
    What lies beyond—well, they'd all braced themselves, right?
    It won't be the first thing anyone notices, but the thick layer of dust over every surface and in every fabric is… Telling.  For the keen eyed, it's clearly two years' worth.
    The first thing people will notice, though, is what's on the floor.
    It's Raven.
    Eyes open, but glassy.  She's not breathing, but she was clearly crawling when she stopped, judging by the position of her arms and legs.  No variation in the thickness of the dust, as well, Detective Grayson.  She's been on the floor like this for two years.
    Wrapped in her clenched fist are the sheets of her bed, which she'd been pulling at, for some reason—but on the floor just shy of the edge of the bed, fallen in amongst the sheets she'd been pulling, is a mirror.  Ornate in silver, its surface shattered in place—not simply cracked, but distorted and very, very clearly broken.
    The fall didn't break it.  One must wonder what, or whom did?

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry's hands go up to cover his mouth when the door opens.  His eyes go wide at the sight of Raven on the floor, a spectral sort of terror seizes his chest and causes him to break out in a cold sweat.
    He's going to lose it.  He's absolutely going to lose it, to turn around and bolt out of the tower and out of this story forever.
    The hand in his jeans' pocket grips the small mirror, dangerously close to breaking it, and takes a very deep breath.
    ~Goddamnit Terry O'Neil you are not going to play the coward, not when Hugh O'Neill told the King of England he could polish his Cloch na Blarnans and drop dead during the Nine Years' War*, goddamnit.~
    He doesn't step into the room, not yet—or at least he will do so after Donna, because there is a gravitas to this whole thing, and the newbie being the first one in the room would feel… disrespectful to the history.  And right now he gets the impression that disrespect is something nobody can afford to dish out, right now.  He does, however, take out his handheld mirror and flips it open.  A precaution.

*Footnote: Terry's mother swears this is factual.

Kian has posed:
    Kían catches his breath audibly, and his still-glowing hand comes down on Terry's shoulder without warning, because he needs to know: {Gods… is she dead?  And who was that downstairs, then?}

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna has faced many things in her life.  Not least the vision, just moments ago, of talons slashing towards her face, and four glowing red eyes.  There has been plenty more though.  She fought beside the other Titans and faced whatever the world threw at her without flinching.  She has stood on the threshold of Tarterus itself and dared the Things that live in that realm to try to pass her.
    The involuntary sound that issues from Donna's mouth when the sight of what is behind the door reaches her eyes might just be a whimper.
    Donna steps quickly into the room, boots kicking up small clouds of dust as she walks, and crouches beside Raven's body.  She checks for signs of life, but finds no breath.  She runs the tip of one finger gently down Raven's cheek.
    Donna looks up.  "She's not dead."  There's steel in her voice.  "We just saw her.  She is here… in the Tower.  She has made it her mausoleum.  There is magic here.  Was she trying to reach the mirror?"

Dick Grayson has posed:
    Once upon a time, a dead body in a room, the dead body of a teammate he respected would have brought Nightwing to the rooftops to stand and scream.  But there's two facts here.  That may be Raven on the floor—but Rachel's not dead.  There may be a ghost in the Tower, a haunting in the machine, but when it comes down to it, Nightwing knows enough about Rachel to know that she has come back from worse than this.
    With Donna handling the check for the signs of life, his eyes lift to look at the mirror, but not directly into it, the detective staying to the flank of it so that his reflection is not present.  "Tell me about the mirror, Raven."  She wants to talk about guilt, she can talk about facts.  Everywhere else in the Tower has been tended to.  This is the only room with dust this thick still in it.  Which means Rachel made sure it wouldn't be touched.  "She could be astral at the moment."

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Okay right.  People are freaking out a bit up ahead and not Terry is quoting some play or author or something.  Which she has discovered isn't totally unsual.  Wait did he say something about… is he talking about his ancestors.
    Kate carefully steps forward to get a look around Terry as Donna steps in and talks about not dead.  What she sees isn't at all comforting and while her first instinct is to go back down for Pie she wrestles it into submisssion and reaches up grabbing Terry by the shoulder and pulling him back from being directly in the doorway.  She is trying to position herself between the intrepid cub reporter and danger.
    It is touching.  She will probably be mad eventually when she knows the truth.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Floating up almost instinctively at the sight of so much dust, Naomi is now a foot off the ground and glowing just a hint.  She stares at the room, looking around slowly at what she can see from her vantage point and then down at Raven before she shifts slightly, "If she were dead… she'd probably not look, well, like that."  She looks to Donna and then looks to Dick as he speaks before she looks to that mirror.  She stares at it briefly before shifting in her spot in the air ever so slightly, hand clenching a little.
    She looks back to the others and then she looks to the room again before saying, "What happened?"  She looks more directly at Donna who seems to know more than the others, "Not what was in the papers…."

Rachel Roth has posed:
    The room is covered in dust—and to some degree, so is Raven.  There is neither a pulse nor a breath coming from her—she is clearly catatonic… And for those present, this is very different from the norm.
    Normally, when Raven is astral, her body is still showing biological signs: It breathes, its heart beats, and so on.  Sometimes, it even continues moving and acting as if its pilot is still present.  Astral projection is weird.  This is very much like she's very, very dead, but also… Not.
    Having led them here, the voice and specter of Raven is simply gone.  Whatever it was has retreated to wherever it came from.  Whether or not it was really Raven is now up for debate—Or whether it was all of her or not.
    Either way, even if she were Astral… She's been that way for two-years.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "Wha—no, Hawk… Hawk, It's okay—" Terry finds himself suddenly being protected.  Bless her arrow-toting heart, he appreciates it.  "We've got to see what's what.  Look…" he says quietly, "…there's no time to explain.  We're all mad here."
    That last part was said to his handheld mirror, which he brought up to eye level.
    What followed was a display of multicolor light that contrasts absurdly with the lugubrious atmosphere.  It's like a rainbow suddenly crashed into a funeral home while taking a wrong turn at Albuquerque en route to a rave.  As the iridescent light ebbs away, Terry O'Neill is gone and in his place—
    Well.  Kate may have gotten a glimpse of him, back when they were fighting the mechanical spiders.  The Cheshire cat pats Kate's shoulder, probably taking advantage of the temporary WTFery he just visited upon her to step into the room.
    He hadn't been ready to reveal anything just yet, but circumstances forced his hand.  As he steps into the room, the magical feline tries very hard to extend his senses, physical and otherwise, while keeping his eyes on that mirror.  Magic is afoot and, right now, they might benefit from someone who might be able to sense something.  Anything.  After all… mysterious mirrors were a thing, back where he comes from.
    He takes several cautious steps towards the mirror.  Unlike Nightwing, he faces it head on, knowing how potentially dangerous that could be.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Raven is of course… was of course the Titan's go to person when it comes to questions of magic.  Donna has some experience of it too, though.  She has lived with enchantments her whole life, though she's no spellcaster.  This, though?  Making sense of what is here?  It's obvious to her that….
    "I don't know," Donna answers Naomi, without looking up.  "I wasn't here."  She didn't need to see what is in front of her to know that not being there was a mistake.  She's been suffering the guilt of that mistake for three years.  Perhaps it is her fault that Don and Kole lost their lives… Would she have made a difference?  Donna took a significant part of the Titan's strength with her when she left.  Maybe it would have made just enough of a difference to have kept them alive.  Maybe she could have saved them.  She could at least have tried.  Perhaps then the Titans would have never broken up.  And surely, Rae would not be in whatever place it is she is now.
    WWDD?  That's the question.  What Would Diana Do?  A question Donna asks herself often.  In this case, she doesn't know the answer.  It's a big shadow to live under.  When she has no clear answer to that question, Donna is sometimes a little reckless.  Better to act than to hesitate.
    Behind her, the cat-man steps cautiously to the mirror, but Donna throws caution to the winds.  There is too much at stake.
    Donna reaches out to gently lift the mirror from where it lies fallen.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate definitely got a look at the cat in the mechaspider incident but the world is full of ridiculous heroes and she wasn't going to assume Terry was the Catguy from that day.  First off why would he even hide it.
    When Terry says that we are all mad here and then goes through a surreal not quite magical girl transformation into… cat guy.
    She does let go off his shoulder though… and looks at her hand.  That tingled.  "Wut," is all she manages pretty much lacking any sort of tact and looks after him and into the room at Naomi with a did you see that sort of look.
    Rallying Kate shakes her head and looks into the room just… watching.  Feeling a bit helpless really she has no idea what this stuff is about really.  She has lots of skill and bravery but no magical acumen.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Detecting magic in Raven's bedroom is kind of a terrible idea.  Not because it doesn't give you much information and is useless, but because it gives you more information than your body has room for.
    For one, there are various enchantments throughout.  Most of her books have a magical aura to them.  Her sweater actually has a pretty powerful, if benign one.  The small gem on Raven's forehead doesn't have an aura.  For reasons Terry doesn't understand, that's very bad.
    Then there's the mirror.  The mirror is the magical aura equivalent to one's spiritual eye as getting struck in the face with the pointed, curved side of a cricket bat is to one's nose.  It would not be uncommon to be momentarily blinded both literally and metaphysically, in addition to things, somehow, not smelling right for a week.
    What a state to be in when Donna picks up the mirror.
    The moment her hand touches it, the second it lifts off of the blanket it had fallen on, it goes off.  Like a trap.  Like a flashbang without the bang.  It would normally catch only a few of the people directly in front of it, but with the cracks running through it, the light bends and warps around people and things in a way that almost seems maliciously homing.  It also travels, well, at the speed of light.  By the time those present find themselves capable of reaction, it's altogether likely that it'll already be over.
    The place that they find themselves is an impossible world.  Rocks as large as the moon and as small as pebbles float about in a great nebulous nothing peppered with stars that may or may not exist.  All around them is the oppressive feeling of Raven without all of that Being Physically Present that was so courteous of her, before.
    Not that any of them know what it means, but near where they unceremoniously arrive—some falling, some not—on this rocky plateau, floating in some infinite abyss… Is a mound of dirt.  Near one end of it, a jagged rock has been lodged forcibly, and hung on the rock is this deeply pink tinted version of Raven's beloved sweater.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    When Donna approaches the mirror, for a moment, it may seem like the Titans of old are back together.  Nightwing's hand goes to the belt and he pulls his grapple gun.  "Donna."  Or whoever she is this week, "Hang on, don't touch it until…."
    And just like Ethel in the Streak, it was too late.
    And as realty drops literally from beneath them and sends them to Ravenworld, Nightwing's hand swings out, firing the grapple gun to latch to a rock and swings to catch Kate, snapping out quickly, "…Kian, right?  Grab Terry!  Someone get Naomi!"

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    A blink as that flash happens and she covers her eyes.  She was floating before the flash and is floating after it.  She blinks several times and then closes her eyes hard for a moment.  Sucking in a hard breath and focusing on keeping her concentration… that and clearing her mind of whatever madness she just saw.  She then opens her eyes again and she's still in the madness.  Then Dick is calling out and she looks over toward him and then looks around quickly for anyone else who has fallen.
    "I'm fine.  I fly, Nightwing."  She then will assist in grabbing Terry if no one else has done it, not to mention making sure Kate is okay.

Kian has posed:
    Kían had taken a step back, in preparation to clear his mind and see if maybe someone (something?) was reachable by telepathy, since who/whatever it was had gotten into his mind downstairs.
    It's probably a good thing that he hadn't quite opened his mind yet when reality shifted right out from under him.  "c'Rhys'yw!!"
    Instinctively, the birdman takes to the air, repeating, "Khe, khe, rov'khe, táo c'Rhys'yw rov'khe…"—but Nightwing's orders manage to cut through his growing panic, and he rapidly arcs around to gather up Terry-the-Cat.  {I have you.  What happened and where are we?}  There's an undercurrent of panic only barely kept under control for now.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    The Cheshire cat is falling.  It is dark.  "This is unsettlingly familiar!" he says.
    For a moment, he reaches into his soul, and—nothing.  There are no Rabbit Holes here.  This feels like a place that is not a place, a world without.  "See to the archer, I'm getting a bird taxi," he calls to Naomi as Kian scoops him up.
    «Calm down.  This is a different place than what you are used to.  Let us land.»
    Terry remembers the feelings in Raven's room.  How utterly strange, and unsettling.  And that gem without an aura.  He maintains his contact with Kian so he understands his words, but he speaks out loud to the rest of the team to put what he feels into words.  "It's almost like we're somewhere in a place called Raven."  Vague statement, but it's the only way he can put that weird feeling into language.  He squints.
    "Pink," he calls out, pointing to the only splash of color, and therefore something potentially significant.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    To be fair to Nightwing when the magic hit them and light and reality bended and warped all around them sending them to… where ever this is….  Kate did make a very inarticulate noise of alarm that sounded a bit like a squeek of terror.
    That said though… Kate was going to save herself.  She was already pulling out a grapple arrow, clicking a guide line to her beltwinch when Dick comes swinging in to snag her out of the air first.
    She doesn't bother complaining though, this is saving her a grapple arrow which is less reusablee than that interesting gun that Nightwing has.  Hmm.
    Once they are on the ground she looks around and tucks the arrow back into the quiver.  "Thanks" to Nightwing. 

Donna Troy has posed:
    Nightwing's calculus misses one vital part of the formula as far as Donna is concerned.  The 'someone' presumably means her, as she can fly.  Unfortunately she hasn't got the faintest idea which one is Naomi.  Events never did quite progress to introductions.  Fortunately by the time she has figured out which one is left over, said left over is flying under her own steam.  Somewhat relieved, she drops to the ground by the jagged rock, where a splash of color catches her eye.
    Donna unzips her jacket and pulls out a coil of slender rope.  It doesn't have a grapple gun attached to it, but perhaps she is preparing in case of future incidents of falling.  Then she steps over to the pink sweater, and looks down at it, staring for a long moment.
    Then she picks it up.
    Because this is apparently what Donna does, now.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    "Donna would you please STOP TOUCHING THINGS!" Nightwing calls out as soon as he touches down with Kate.  "…sorry for yelling in your ear.  You're not hard of hearing like the other Hawkeye, right?"

Kian has posed:
    Kían heads for the ground.  {Are we… are we going to be stuck here?  Like I was stuck on Earth?}  That seems to be the thing he's most frightened of—not this place as such, but that he's been blown into a strange new world again.
    Touching down lightly, he releases Terry, and opens his mind carefully, 'listening' for any other active mind(s) that might be there.  Hopefully, this isn't a mistake.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Floating there, she moves over closer to Nightwing when she sees what Donna is doing before she looks over at Nightwing and then sucks in a sharp breath, "Are we going to yet another strange world again?" she asks as she watches Donna pick things up and wonders if once more they will be disappearing into another universe.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Nobody's allowed to get their bearings for long.  Nobody is allowed to settle.  To process.  This is the chaos of being in Raven right now, that things just keep happening.
    They touch down and all around them the rocks seem to not just be floating, but seem to… be arranging themselves?  They also all seem to have flat tops, too.  That's weird.
    The sweater that Donna lifts is not just an exact copy of Raven's sweater, but in pink… But it also seems to have been cleaved from shoulder to sternum.  There is… Blood, dried into where it was cut there.  Can parts of Raven be hurt?  Can they die?  That's weird too.
    What's also weird is the very familiar voice that comes from nowhere.  "YOU!" it calls—and it seems… Deeper, more assertive—not in a… Demonic way, but in a way that just sounds a whole lot tougher.
    It's a Raven.  This one is taller, somewhat—or at least seems taller—and it's wearing a deep green sweater, and the most intensely actionable scowl—more than a frown.  It's running directly at Donna, apparently, and doesn't seem interested in stopping.  "You're the reason we're all split apart!  You're why it got out!"
    And then, it's getting ready to deliver a pretty startlingly capable—in technique—right cross.  Of course, everyone present is a hero in their own right.  It seems like it'd be child's play to stop her—and what harm could a punch from Raven do?
    Except this is Raven's Bravery, and it's apparently very angry.  In her soul self, her Bravery is also very strong.  Stopping her would be like trying to stop Wonder Woman—and getting hit would feel much the same.  It's a shame that isn't at all obvious.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate nods to Nightwing and is maybe about so say something when he yells and she rubs the side of her head.  "No damage… yet… wait he has bad hearing?"  It isn't like he telegraphs it to her when he is mentoring.  At least not yet.
    Then there is Brave Sir Raven, coming in running at Donna and yelling a challenge.
    Kate watches for the moment because she is pretty out of her depth still as to what is going on, and magic, and Raven isn't her friend yet… she isn't about to shoot her with an arrow to save Donna from a punch.
    Maybe Donna deserves a punch.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    «Stuck here?  Only if we don't play our cards right.»  As Kian disengages, the Cheshire cat takes a few steps towards Donna's general direction, stopping by Nightwing and Kate.
    "Nightwing, I am out of my depth here.  Gar hasn't told me that much about Raven outside of telling me she scares—"
    And then there is Green Raven zooming towards Donna.  His jaw drops, but he is not going to intervene… because this is Troia, she can take a punch, right?  And besides, it's time to make like Velma and uncover the jinkies.  "—what is it with the color themes, is that significant for her?" he says, glancing quickly at Nightwing.  Almost as if he doesn't want to see the impact.  Troia will be totally fine.  Right?

Kian has posed:
    Kían meanwhile returns to the air.  It makes him feel safer, and maybe he can learn something that one of the others can explain—perhaps high enough to see what's on one of those strange flat-topped rocks, or anything else that seems to be of interest.
    There's no risk of him getting out of sight; he's still glowing.  It will be a while before he's calm enough to stop doing that.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    A blink as she looks over in time to see what appears to be Raven again, rushing at Donna to try to strike her.  She then looks on in confusion before looking at the others and then flies in a bit closer but knows she won't really get there in time and she frankly isn't sure that Raven will hit all that hard… or will she?  She just can't figure out even what is properly up down or left right.  So, this is all unclear.

Dick Grayson has posed:
    "We're in something intensely personal to Rachel…."  Not Raven.  This is more personal, and Nightwing knows it.  "This is like being in her psyche."  And then there's the scream from Raven and the green verson of her that comes rushing out at Donna.  He doesn't flinch away, however—nor does he move to save Donna.  He wants to see.  See if this Raven is going to follow through.
    "Her intimate space.  And her first response is the same.  Donna's the lynchpin."  He's looking around quickly, but…
    "No one interfere, this is Donna's fight!" he finally decides.  Because it's going to have to be Donna that stands up to her.
Or she may never heal.

Donna Troy has posed:
    "I didn't know!" is Donna's anguished reply to the challenge of the green Raven.  It's not exactly a denial.  "How could I have known?"  She slings the blooded and torn dark pink sweater over her shoulder and raises her arms, in something approximating a boxer's stance.  "Raerae, please…."
    In days gone by, Troia would likely have met a punch with her shield.  She was always really good with a shield.  She doesn't have a shield with her today, but it's quickly apparent that she hasn't raised her fists to punch, but to use her forearms to block instead of a shield.  This is more effective than it might at first seem, because under her jacket she is wearing a pair of bracers that are forged of an alloy containing a tiny amount of the metal of the shield Aegis.  The shield once borne by Zeus and Athena, all-protecting.
    There are limits.  Here, in the realm of Raven's mind, her punch is greater than those limits.  There are few in the world better equipped to deal with a punch like Wonder Woman's than Donna—and they have sparred together many times—but there are different degrees of 'dealing with', and there is a significant element of surprise here too.  This is Raven, not Diana.  Donna had barely braced.
    The impact hurls Donna back into the heap of rocks hard enough that rock shatters, sending a cloud of dust and pebbles into the air and skittering across the landscape and a crunch echoing through the void.
    The rain of dust and rubble subsides, and Donna drags herself to her feet painfully, grey with the dust coating her.  She gasps sharply through gritted teeth, reaching to her back.  Her hand comes away wet with blood.  She staggers a little, then rights herself and looks back at green Raven.  She takes a deep breath and reaches down into the rubble, pulling out the now even more battered sweater, and throws it over her shoulder again.
    Donna rises up painfully into the air, breathing heavily.  She's being much more cautious now.  "Rae.  Please.  Talk to me.  Let me… let me explain.  I didn't want this to happen.  You know I didn't want this to happen."

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Bravery keeps going.  If there's one thing this portion of Raven is good at, it's hitting things.  All of the technique she's absorbed by osmosis watching combatants like Nightwing, Hawk, Dove, the other Robins for that matter, and of course Troia herself, is expressed here.  Easier to do it in the mind than physically, and with the cleverness of Raven behind it, it can mix-and-match as need be to be… Plenty more dangerous than Raven would ever be with these powers.
    For example, it understands how tough Troia is, and isn't about to assume that just hitting her once is going to keep her down.  Instead, this shard of Raven is slinging itself across the field at a speed Raven doesn't normally fly, before it bodily tackles the other woman to the ground.  One hand is wrapped up in the collar of Donna's shirt as they skid along the ground.  The other draws back, and for a moment it looks like she's just going to start punching.
    "I oughta beat the shit out of you!" It cries, its voice distorting for not much more than a word.  "No, I should KILL you!"  Half of its face distorts, turning from Raven's usual pale to something blood red sporting two eyes vertically… Then, there are a few moments of it just breathing, teeth bared, wild-eyed, down at Donna.  "I… I can't let it—You shouldn't have come here."  It pushes against Donna somewhat weakly now, and begins backing away, almost stumbling.
    All of a sudden, there are so many voices.
    "We know, Troia," they say—Bravery not among them.  The Raven in Grey is there, looking around at those present.  "But it still hurts.  And it still did.  Even if you didn't mean it.  She heard how you felt.  Heard your fear.  We aren't supposed to be apart from the whole.  We're not as strong that way."
    From seemingly nowhere, in a purple sweater that seems to be unzipped just a little further than even Bravery would probably be comfortable with, "We can't keep It locked away.  It infected us.  It killed Happiness, and without all of us…."
    One wearing glasses, clutching a nebulously large tome and wearing a rather ornate golden sweater, finishes the thought.  "We can't keep him out.  Not for much longer.  Each little stab opens the door even further."
    "HONESTLY," Bravery shouts, "You'd've done everyone a favor if you would've just snapped her neck on the way in."  Sadness, in grey, sobs a bit, curling upon herself.  "It's not supposed to get this bad.  We're not supposed to be alive if it gets this bad."

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate watches Donna get socked hard like that and goes flying into the rocks demolishing them.
    That looked like it hurt.
    Then it starts to escalate to threats of murder and Kate turns her head towards Nightwing "Are you… sure?"
    Then there is a flock of ravens, is that a murder or was that crows.  Is this an unkindness of Ravens.  That is for something later though.  Right now Kate just blinks looking around at the Ravens, so colorful.
Okay the purple Raven is cute.
    Damnit Kate, also something for not right now.
    "Maybe we can help though," she finally speaks up.  Yeah Dick said it wasn't there fight but they are here now.  She spreads her hands glancing towards the one with the golden sweater.  "Maybe we can do something to help," she repeats, not a question more a statement.

Kian has posed:
    If anyone happens to be watching the bird, he staggers in mid-air, dropping a few meters before catching himself.  It's the aerial equivalent of tripping over a rock.  This was the moment that Kían got a sense of what is happening here.  Instinctively, he does what he would do for a mourning friend, or frightened child—simply radiate a sense of support, of just being there because being alone in crisis is never a good thing.  He doubts it will help, but what else can he do?
    Other than spiral back down to the ground.  He needs to give someone what he knows, so they can explain it to the others.  He knows he won't have the words.
    He drops lightly alongside Terry, hand going to the cat-man's shoulder.  {I won't be able to explain what I saw—tell them for me.  There's something else here besides Raven, something worse, something filling all these part-Ravens with anger… Gods, so much anger.  It's bad, it's really bad, whatever it is.}

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry frowns.  His hand touches Kian's, «Something else that is not Raven, filling them with anger….»
    "Guys, our eye in the sky says there's something bad, something worse that is pumping these Ravenlings full of anger like a steroid shot out of hell.  A sort of metaphysical entity."  He looks at Nightwing, keeping touch with Kian so the bird can understand him.
    «How… strong is it?» he asks him, «Do you see any way the flow of anger could be interrupted… or temporarily redirected?»
Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    A look over at Kate and Naomi nods before she blinks over at Kian and Terry.  She hmms and then clenches her fists, "I'm really not sure what this is all about but…."  She flies straight up and starts looking around as she raises up into the… the sky?  This place is insane but Naomi isn't gonna get scared a second time.  She's still kinda embarrassed from the last time, "…you say metaphysical but isn't everything here?"  She starts looking around from higher up, trying to get vision on something, anything that is… umm… out of the ordinary?  Everything here seems to be but she feels like this would be a known it when see it thing.
    "I mean, you can't tell me there's actually a punchy, saddy, neck plungy, and bookworm version of your friend?"  She starts slowly spinning around as she floats up, occasionally looking down toward those below her, trying not to get too far away.  Who knows how big this place is.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna hadn't prepared for this speed either.  She's fast.  Really fast.  Back in the day she'd be blocking on mook's shot at one end of the alley and then hitting another mook at the other end of the alley so quickly she was a blur between.  If she'd been expecting green Raven to be that fast she might have been able to dodge the attack, but she wasn't expecting it any more than she'd expected the strength.
    The pair drive a rut through the dirt in the shape of Donna's back.  There's blood left in their passing, and Donna doesn't know what to do.  Even when Raven's features shift and that second pair of eyes appear, she doesn't attempt to strike back.
    She doesn't seem to want to fight.
    "I had to come back here!" Donna says to Raven, her voice cracking.  "I promised."
    When green Raven backs away, Donna struggles to sit up, then struggles to her feet.  She stands unsteadily, legs buckling, and drops down to her knees.  Once more she reaches out a hand, picking up the torn pink rags that once looked like a sweater, and draping them over her shoulder.  As she hears the voices of the other Ravens chorusing, she looks up, and looks from face to face.
    She looks almost broken.  Whether the determination and planning of the others, and the guidance Kian gives of that other presence infecting Raven's mind can find a solution, or whether Nightwing is right and this is her fight alone, there doesn't seem much fight left in her.
    "I know it hurts," Donna whispers to Gray.  "It hurts me too.  I'm sorry.  I'm so sorry.  I couldn't… I couldn't cope.  I was… Marv.  I was stupid.  You all told me.  You were all right.  But it was you who showed me, Rae.  And I couldn't…."
    She turns to purple.  "Please Rae.  We can all be happy again.  I know we can.  Don died.  Kole died.  We can't fix that.  But we're still alive."
    To gold, her voice getting quieter each time she responds: "You can.  You're strong Rae.  Stronger than you know.  And you have us to lean on, to lend you strength.  That's why I came back."
    Green gets a look, but no words.  Donna doesn't trust herself not to agree.
    Finally, again to Gray, barely audible.  "You are.  You are supposed to be alive.  Not… like this.  Properly alive."
    "Please, Raerae."

Kian has posed:
    "Not know," Kían says in his simple English.  Terry can feel the mental contact fade as the birdman concentrates on the presences, seeing if there's anything else he can learn, and then break entirely as he releases Terry's shoulder and takes a step away so he can really concentrate.
    The first thing he notices is that he was wrong.  There is a presence here, not Raven—but it's not what's infused the part-Ravens with rage.  The anger feels like Raven too, like there is a missing part-Raven that's been shared out between the rest of them.
    Well, then, what is that other presence, the worse-than-Raven?
    He is not going to try to probe at it to find out.  It's too big, too awful.  Block it, interfere with it?  Gods, that's not going to happen, it might notice him.
    He reaches over to Terry to give him what he's learned—and then breaks contact again, casting his mind outward.  {Raven?}  It is the bird's experience that all problems can be settled peacefully.
    The poor, sheltered, innocent little thing.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    The bird does some reconnaissance, and while his conclusions aren't entirely correct in regards to the infection, they do reveal… The presence of something malicious.  It doesn't belong here—a psyche entirely unlike Raven's, and much like those present, it is a physical being… Or, some of it.  The whole of Trigon's existence could be contained within Raven's soul-self, but not in this fashion.
    Above, an orange-clad Raven arrives, floating in slumped over, somewhat.  Idly, she seems somewhere between consciousness and sleep, as if exhaustion set in some time ago, or she was freshly awoken.  "Shouldn't fly too far from any of the rocks.  You'll get lost, and die out there.  Better land," it says, before it lets out this aggressive yawn the likes of which only early-morning workers that aren't early-morning people are capable of.
    They all seem to speak up in unison after that.  "He's so close.  None of you understand."  The sky itself, which had been nothingness—suddenly half-transitions into a hellscape.  The stereotypical kind.
    Grander in scale than any building, sitting on a throne of bones pulled from creatures that cannot be properly described, gazing upon which is like seeing impossible non-euclidean geometry, painful to the eyes and the mind altogether—set into cooled magma.  Its eyes are glowing this pale horrid yellow, and there are four of them.  The man's skin is red, and his herculean physique would be imposing if he were one story tall.  At some hundred plus, the strength he could bring to bear would be unstoppable—and this is just a fractional representation brought on by a shard of his presence within Raven's soul-self.
    "Tell me how we're supposed to be Happy when it is dead?  When he is already here and we can't even bring ourself" Singular, "to stop him?  To send him out of even the realm in which we are All?"  This is spoken by every part of Raven that isn't knowledge.  Knowledge, in her gold, looks bothered, for a moment.
    "We can't.  But She can.  Maybe.  Possibly.  Maybe the door isn't open all the way yet."  Her attention seems to focus on Trigon.  Knowledge adjusts her glasses.
    "He can't see you.  She is his Pride, and she has blinded him.  It was all she could do."  From behind, Sadness is sobbing again.  "Before we all split apart.  Before she was in the crystal."
    "But," Knowledge again.  "If he can't see you, he won't act.  Maybe you'll be able to get her out before the demons overwhelm you."  Is she being… Metaphysical, or literal?  Is this supposed to be before 'Raven's demons' or before 'real, literal, from hell monsters demons'?  She doesn't say.
    Poor Kian, of course, receives only a shrill, anguished cry when he dares reach out for the Core.  Raven has been torn apart for years.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    "Look…."  Naomi floats back down at the insitence of… orange Raven?  She doesn't know.  She floats closer, "…I barely know any of you.  I know some of you from teh news.  That's it."  She looks from one to the next, "I know one thing though.  Someone here is in pain.  They are hurting and I'm a hero, dammit."  She nods her haed, "So, point me in the direction of what I hit to make that better and I'll hit it."  She looks up toward the red monster and winces as she looks and then looks back to the others, "Is it that guy?  Cause I'll hit him.  I hit the man who killed my family and destroyed my world on the first night I had powers.  I'll hit the weird red guy, too."  She nods and clears her thoat.
    "I just need to know where to go, what to hit, hug, or smash to get things done.  Ok."

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate can't see up high, though it does sound more metaphysical than… or maybe not.
    There is a slow turn around as the scenary shifts to a hellscape.
    Finally she looks between all the Ravens again.  "So… uuh… that… huge… guy is holding a prisoner but can't see us.  So if we go rescue our Princess from the castle… I mean crystal… you all get to pull yourselves together."
    "Then you can boot him out, we get to live, and we can all go have pie?"
    Kate is trying to distill it all down.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry should be terrified beyond sanity.  Prehaps it is thanks to his non-human side that he is only horrified, and fortunately he's closer to the side of Unsanity right now.  The red demon is a sobering image.
    "Okay.  So now we know.  And knowing is half the battle," he muses, and says a little louder for Naomi's benefit, "You can't punch a person into happiness, no matter what expressions like 'slap happy' might indicate."
    He narrows his eyes at what Kate says.  "Or can you?"  He remembers the crystal on Rachel's forehead, and how wrong it felt.
He starts walking toward Donna, looking at the gathered Ravens.  "So what you're saying is that she might have a chance by storming the figurative castle?"

Kian has posed:
    The mental cry is echoed in Kían's own sharp keening; hands to his temples, he almost drops to his knees again, but catches himself.  He's starting to see the wisdom of Earth not being telepathically active.
    He shakes his head clear, and takes a moment to regain his bearings, and then kicks into the air again.
    Now, he has had his eyes closed in concentration, and his attention diverted from his physical surroundings, and nineteen out of every twenty words he's heard, he just doesn't know yet.
    So he really wasn't prepared for the monumental crimson Presence when he finally does look up.
    He drops back to the ground, just behind Terry, grabbing his shoulder.  {What the qokh is that?!}  The word doesn't translate, but it has the intensity of a swear word.

Donna Troy has posed:
    It all comes down to family.  Above them towers the terrible demonic form of Raven's father Trigon, hungry but patient, waiting his opportunity, waiting for the gate to open.  Only Raven's efforts, barely understood by the Titans present if at all, stops him
    Far away, somewhere in the vastness, there is other family.  Donna's family, the one that she knows nothing about.  Ancient powers who once strode the halls of Olympus become aware in some esoteric fashion that their daughter Troia, perhaps their only surviving offspring since they were cast out of those halls millennia ago, is in mortal danger.  Could they act?  Perhaps, but to do so would break ancient treaties and restart a war in amongst the gods.  For a moment of indecision, the fate of worlds hang in the balance before caution prevails.
    Perhaps too Diana rests uneasily in the Embassy in New York.  She always seemed to have an almost supernatural empathy for Donna's feelings.
    Donna remains on her knees, unable to find the strength to even stand.  She listens in silence to the voices around her, first those of the manifold Ravens, then those of her team-mates.
    Dick.  Stalwart Dick.  He founded the Titans.  He has always been there.  But then the rest?  Who even are they?
    Naomi.  Poor, confused Naomi, who can't possibly have imagined her introduction to the team would be like this.  She's new, she barely knows anyone there, but she speaks without hesitation of her willingness to put everything on the line.
    Kate.  Donna has heard that she goes by the name 'Hawkeye' and knows she's an archer.  She fought with Gar against the spiders.  She's not backing down, not looking for an easy way out, she's looking for answers.
    Terry.  The junior reporter who was worrying about losing his exclusive, and terrified people will find out that he might be becoming part of the story.  Overcoming that fear to stand beside them in the form he was trying to let nobody see, demanding answers, demanding to know how to help.
    The bird-man, Kian.  So lost, so far from home.  Reaching out to touch the heart of darkness, risking his sanity itself to help those in this new world who have adopted him.
    Donna gets to her feet.  It's all about family.
    Donna takes hold of those pink rags, and wraps them around her forearm, tying them in place.  "She's not dead," She whispers.  She looks back at the five with her, at Kian, Naomi, Dick, Terry and Kate.  She rises slowly up into the air.  It's all about family.
    Donna takes that slender rope she'd brought from her jacket and stretches a length of it out in her hands.  She turns to face Knowledge.
    "Tell us what to do," she whispers.  Her voice rises up.  "Whatever it is, we will face it.  Together."  Louder.  "We are here for you, Rae.  Let us help you."
    The rope between her hands bursts into a brilliant golden light, a line of light in the darkness, the very image of Wonder Woman's lasso.  Battered and bruised but no longer broken, Donna speaks out loud and confident "We will not give up on you.  We are your family.  We are Titans."

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Trigon's presence is… To say intense might be the limits of the language, but it's something more.  Certainly, he looks like a stereotype, but the way reality seems to sort of… Quiver in anticipation for him in an unpleasant way tends to communicate what exactly he'd do to the universe if given the chance.
    Still, he remains… Seated, there.  He is physical.  He does exist even if there's only a fraction of him on this plane.  He's just not doing anything about them.
    "If you were to punch him, you would be instantly obliterated in a moment that lasted for an eternity to you, consisting of only the worst pain you could ever feel," Knowledge explains to Naomi, succinctly, while adjusting her glasses again.  "It is the most lenient of his punishments."
    Knowledge turns, and looks off of the plateau in one direction, off of which forms this ramshackle bridge made of floating, flat-topped rocks.  There are wide gaps that one would have to fly over, some gaps that can be jumped, but they lead on to the end, on which there is an arch that seems to lead to nowhere.  "Go."
    "We can't follow.  He can see us," Sadness chimes in, heading off any hopeful talk of the Ravens accompanying.  "If he saw us trying to go back across the bridge, he'd attack.  Barely got out the last time."
    Passion, who sounds just a little breathier than the others—"We sent Bravery and Happiness because we thought they had the best chance of waking her."  She looks down a moment.  "I've been pretty weak for a long time.  We didn't realize what losing Don and Kole did to Happy, or what it did to—" Sadness erupts, then, "Don't say it!  It comes out of us if you say it.  It likes hearing its name."
    Furrowing her brows, Knowledge gestures to the bridge of islands.  "Just… Try.  Once you're through—it's going to be dangerous, and I have no idea how you're going to do it, but if anything you've said is true—if all of what you're feeling is as real as it seems… You're the only ones that can."

Kate Bishop has posed:
    "Right.  Okay."  That part about being obliterated in a moment that would feel like it would last eternity and be the worst pain imaginable is… daunting.
    "You know this is probably one of the worst possible scenarios ever, so if we look on the bright side… later when we are having pie well… nothing else will seem so bad in the future."
    That may not be the world's best pep talk.
    "Castle that way… May need a lift some of those gaps look ridiculously wide for parkour but lets do this thing Titans."

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Flying down next to Kate, she gestures to her back, "Hop on and… promise not to give any more pep talks, k?" she asks and then she looks over to Knowledge Raven before looking ahead, "And I can't believe we need to get this girl's happiness back given how much of a bundle of joy that one is."  She then gestures forward.  "I see no point at all in putting this off."  She looks to the others.  "I'm good if you are."  She then looks to Kate, waiting for her to, well, hitch a ride.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry nods at Knowledge, and looks to Donna, then the others.  "Agreed.  Let's not delay.  Rachel's been in this hell for three years, it's time it ended."
    He gives Donna a thumbs-up and then walks over to Kian, putting his hand on his shoulder and catching him up with the gist of things, capping it off with «…so I'm going to need a ride.  I hope you don't mind, but we need to go and rescue her, and we're going to do it in style.»
    Out loud he says, "You know how the cry goes, Troia,"—yes, his eyes says, say it.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna drops to the ground close to where the newbies have gathered.  "You all good?" she asks.  "Be prepared for anything.  Have each other's backs.  Fight hard, fight fast.  Keep your eyes open at all times and do not drop your guards.  Don't hesitate for a second, if you kill anything you're only killing bad dreams."  How true is that?  Unclear, but it's a good story—and if she's wrong, it's only demons.
    "We're going to do this.  We're going to win.  We're going to rescue Raven, and we're going to get out of here.  I'm going to owe you all dinner for a month.  "
    "One other thing.  Whatever happens in the future, you are all Titans today."
    Donna wraps her lasso around her arm, and scoops Nightwing up somewhat unceremoniously, and a quick glance is taken to make sure everyone has a ride for the journey over the broken bridge.
    And she's away.

Kian has posed:
    As it slowly sinks in that they're going up to where the monster is, Kían's eyes progressively widen, and he just stares disbelievingly at Terry.  {They're not serious.  You're not serious!  This… but… he….}
    He tilts his head back, eyes closed, and mutters something in his own language that has the cadence of a prayer.  {This is madness.  This is absolute madness,} he 'sends, shaking his head… and then getting a good carrying grip on the cat.  {All right.  If we're going to do this, let's do this.  Gods and Goddesses, keep watch on all of us….}

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate is hoping mind arrows are effective against Demons.  She is also not trying to think too hard about the whole situation and have self doubt about the arrows working.  Mind arrows.  Maybe.  Who knows.  She doesn't know how this works.
    Donna didn't do the thing and Kate wnders how disappointed Terry is about this.
    "Titans Together!" she says and grins at Terry and then well she steps in closer to Naomi and loops her arms around her.  She has had practice with this thanks to the web slinging with Gwen.
    "No dropping me and I'll work on the pep talks.  So how long you been doing this?"

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Lifting up Kate and taking off, she smiles over at Kate and then looks ahead, "Hmm, today is the 11th right?  So… almost three weeks."  She nods her head and then grins, "Getting pretty good at flying so, no worries."

Rachel Roth has posed:
    The journey to the arch is uneventful as long as nobody looks at Trigon.  Not that the giant demon does anything, but that while he might not stop them, there is a moment in that brief travel during which Trigon's attention, great and terrible, is on the bridge.
    It actually… Hurts for him to look at them.  Regardless of how tough or how stern their stuff, just the gaze of the demon alone is enough to render normal men and women to atoms.  Still, though, he doesn't act, and though his attention is on the bridge for those scant few moments, it looks away just as quickly.
    It might end up being a pile of uncoordinated, pained Titans that makes it through, but that's… More accurate to the Titans than the opposite, to be fair.  While the gaze didn't last long enough to knock them out of the sky, it was probably going to ache for a while.
    On the other side of the arch, there had been nothing.  When they fly through, they're definitely somewhere, a different island adrift in the ocean of the mindscape.  Though they can still see Trigon, they cannot see where they left Raven's emoticlones behind.  There is no arch on this island through which retreat would be possible.
    So, essentially, it's do or die.  Luckily, they're not alone.  At the center of the island, wrapped in crystalline structures that, on not-so-close inspection bear the same markings as Raven's sweater, stretched out and coiling like snakes around every one of her limbs, encasing her legs, but leaving her upper body hanging loosely from its grasp.  The pose she's in is as unflattering as it is flattering.
    Additionally, unluckily, they're not alone.  Loud, blood-curdling shrieks echo from the sky surrounding.  Shapes that had not been there before.  great winged monstrosities with red skin and six-inch long talons on both hands and feet, encroach upon them by the dozen.
    It will be mere seconds before they arrive.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "You know, I wasn't supposed to have my first fighting lesson with Harley until Monday," Terry comments, a withered smile trying to ignore the pain he is in from what happened to them while passing the bridge.  It hurt, all the way down to his chaotic little soul.  "I was hoping I'd at lest have a codename before anything like this happened."
    When they arrive and the hectoring shrieks of the demons resound, he draws his claws and sighs, "I guess it's just fighting on instinct."  He squints at the incoming winged monstrosities and he says aloud, and also while keeping contact with Kian: "If you think you can aim for one of their backs, I could land there and try to claw at their wings and back to cause a distraction.  You and Naomi could lead the other demons on an aerial goose chase, whatever is needed to help the others get to Rae?"
    He's never done this before, but it's a potentially okay maybe terrible idea.  There's a first time for everything.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    "You'll do great Terry," she calls from her death grip on Naomi.
    A death grip because well Naomi just told her she has been a superhero for almost a whole three weeks.  That doesn't insprie a lot of confidence even with the whole commentary that she is getting pretty good at flying.
    Not that she is likely to tell Naomi her worry because that might hurt her confidence.
    The grip tightens though when the gaze of the multi-dimensional conquering demon lord looks down upon them by accident.  "Oh sweet zombie jesus… this… is bad" she closes her eyes until they are through it all hoping to not die right there and then.
    Honestly after that the horrible demons with long talons and… yeah they are honestly a relief.  I mean their boss isn't looking at them so this is… well deadly and horrible but all things are relative.  Her pep talk worked for her at least.  Honest relativity.
    As soon as she is set down she draws an arrow and squints, looking between the demons and the Raven encased partially over yonder then back.  May as well go with this first arrow to see how invulvnerable they are, firing an aror piercing bodkin styled high tech arrow right at a demon.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Flying in, Naomi actually seems to flounder in air a little under Trigon's gaze.  She flares and Kate can feel a bit of heat when that happens but she seems ot focus really hard before finally she puts Kate down and lets out a slow breath.  She puts a hand to her knee and closes her eyes, "We have… been at this a while."  She nods her head, "I really hadn't planned to be like this for this long."  She then shakes her ehad and looks up at all the demons before she looks to Raven, "The goal is her, right?"  She points at Rachel and then looks to the others, "Just get her, I'll keep them busy."  She then floats up and away from Kate, watching her fire an arrow before she puts both hands out to the side and then with a wince she creates two beams of energy in an arc and pulls her hands together in front of her, launching out a wide arc of energy at the demons and then shuddering a little when she releases.
    "Just hurry!"  Naomi then looks back at them with a bit of a weary look and then looks back up at the demons.

Kian has posed:
    Kían is already gauging the demons' flying ability even before Terry outlines his terrible plan.  {And then where do you go when it starts to fall?} he asks, quite sensibly.
    What Terry senses, the emotional content that's inherent in the mental contact, is that yes, Kían is afraid—but he's also indignant, almost angry at this invasion of his space by these abominations.  The Akiár were charged by their Gods to be guardians of the skies, and even if this isn't his world, he still believes that.
    He unleashes a blinding flash of light in the face of the nearest demon heading his way.  {Better idea.  Be the eyes in the back of my head and I can get us both through this in one piece,} he suggests.  There are fleeting glimpses of a game the birdman played back home, an insane cloud of flying bodies that looks as dangerous as… well as dangerous as it actually is.  And the awareness that Kían was very good at this game.

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    In a land of shadows, a single candle burns brightest.
    The Titans get not a lone flame, but an outpouring of radiant gold and white light that flies at them from the middle distance like a comet.  It's moving fast, burning away shadows ahead of it and leaving a trail of… clarity?  Purity?  Something that seems less polluted by misery and sorrow, less contaminated by evil, in its wake.
    The blob of light crashes through one of the downswooping demons and slams it hard into the ground.  A humanoid shape can be seen inside that light.  It's blurrily incadescent; a hand rises and falls and thrusts a static bolt of golden light into one of the demons, pinning it to the ground like a pin tacking an insect to cardboard.
    Caitlin's form manifests inside that radiant aura and she faces her friends.  It's not just a blob of light; several 'Caitlins' all occupying the same place, all just a little out of sync with each other, indistinct and phasing in and out of turn.  The complex potential resolves into a more familiar face wearing comfortable clothing and a little baker's smudge on her cheekbone.
    But that aura of resolute hope, of determination, remains around her, pushing back the shadows in a steady wall around the beleagured band of Titans.  Those ghosting images trail around her every motion as if surrounded by dozen of temporal potentials permitted only in a construct like Raven's mindscape.
    "I got worried and I went upstairs and you guys were taking forever and you were all gone except for Raven and I got worried and I wasn't gonna do anything but then I touched the mirror because OBVIOUSLY you guys touched the spoopy cursed object and where the HECK are we?" she demands, the words babbling in a rapid torrent.
    "Pardon my French!" she adds a beat later.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Dick is deposited in front of the mass of crystals to take up a defensive position and order the battle on the ground while Donna comes in to land right in front of Raven.  "RAE!  Rae, can you hear me?  Are you awake?  How do we get you out of here?"
    Raven's trapped form breathes painfully, but doesn't respond.  "Raerae… please wake up!  We need to know how to get you out of here," Donna pleads, on the verge of tears.  She slaps Rae's cheeks, sharply but not hard, and there's still little by way of reaction.  Donna slides the ragged remains of Raven's pink sweater down her forearm, wraps it around her fist and punches the crystal.
    There is a mighty crack, and rocks tremble—but the crystal is uncracked.  Donna shakes her fist rapidly, and says something loud and foreign that is probably a swear word.
    Then time is up.
    Two winged monstrosities skim low over the landscape towards Donna.  One is intercepted by Dick, tumbling to escape the slashing claws and escrima sticks swirling.  The other continues it's flight towards her.
    She leaps skywards, and starts to swing her lasso.  As the Demon closes in she swings the rope down, and pulls hard, trapping the demon in the unbreakable bonds of the rope.  She continues to swing.
    Letting the rope out a little further, Donna winds her arm back, yanking the demon into the air above her.  She pulls down again, bringing it back round in a loop.  Up again, building speed, playing out the rope, faster and faster.  Then with a tug she redirects the circle of whirling, angry demon, smashing it into the one that Dick was holding off.  As he goes to seek another target, so does she…
    Donna loops up, leveling out the whirling demon flail until it's on the horizontal, and charges.  "CAIT!  Heads up!" she yells as she sends one with a flying kick to the ground at Caitlin's feet.
    "If anyone has any ideas how to wake Raven, now would be a GREAT time to suggest it!" Donna calls out at the top of her voice.  A moment later she's in the thickest part of the demon storm, her living flail smashing demons out of the sky.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    "I've got no idea!" Terry cries out, making sure he's got a good hold on Kian as they prepare to play Red Baron, "How do you wake up sleeping beauty?"
    «All right, I'll be your co-pilot.»
    Making sure that he maintains contact with Kian at all times, he tries to make sure he covers the bird-man's back.  As they fly through, though, several talons manage to cut him—shoulder, once across the back—fortunately just the very tip, otherwise he would be dead—and he does his best to slash back.  His claws are much shorter, however, so he has to try and goad the demons into slashing higher and then claw at them after ducking, his claws trying to catch the underside of their arms.  It's a risky game, however, as every swipe at Vorpal has a chance of hitting Kian, too.  «Keep flying and keep weaving, Kian!»

Kian has posed:
    Even with the extra weight of Terry, Kían is almost unbelievably nimble in the air.  {What about that purple punch thing you did to that spider, can you do that?}
    Another blinding flash at an approaching creature… and then a wince and a startled yelp when Terry gets hit—thanks to the mental link, Kían can feel it too.
    Kían whips around and unleashes a snarling, crackling fan of lightning, determined to clear his airspace.
    Welcome to Angry Birds: Titans Edition.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Luckily, the demons are essentially glass cannons.  They're not meant to be durable, not meant to do much other than swarm like locusts and tear things apart.  Trigon doesn't care if he loses one, or a hundred, or a thousand.  He does not have mere legions—he does not have millions or billions or trillions, Trigon has enough at his beck and call that it is the nebulous concept of an idea of a number.
    Truth be told, the best way to think of it is that Trigon has enough minions.  No more, no less.
    An arrow strikes true, and pulverizes the important internal bits of one demon, a successful experiment by the younger Hawk.  That shows that they can fight.  The only question is, what is she going to do about the two that shriek in behind her, diving from the sky with talons extended?
    The cloud that Kian approaches is monumental.  He may be good at the game, and this is perhaps his chance to soar: But much like insects, the beasts in the sky fold in upon themselves in that great cloud of angry, taloned flesh, seeking to consume Kian and his rider one peck at a time.  The lightning, he'll find effective—splitting open their flesh and reducing them to a carcass rather swiftly, arcing between demons to some extent—slowing their aggression, but not halting it… And he'd better be ready to call a lot of lightning.
    Thundering through the mindscape in a most heroic fashion, when Cait arrives it's almost triumphant—and quite the bolstering presence indeed.  Not only does she land on a demon, but she crushes it well enough.  The only lingering doubt might be how little it burns in her presence—how her merely being there isn't Anathema to these demons, clearly not the Judeo-Christian sort.  Would even faith save someone in the face of not a cloud, but an oncoming typhoon of these creatures?  As Cait dives into the fray, she'll have to put that into the test, as they come at her relentlessly, flying in by the pair, then by threes and fours.
    Donna splits their attention—but only so much, as Cait is a literally glowing beacon for them to snuff out.  They come at her in pairs again and again, breaking off from Cait.
    Naomi finds herself at the center of another hotspot—her powers as intensely luminous as Cait's, but not quite limited to one demon at a time.  The beam consumes them utterly, but they flock to her like bugs to a zapper—attempting to crowd around her and then consume the space around her utterly.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    The armor she wears cracks when one slashes by.  Another catches her side and Naomi screams out, launching a blast in that direction before sending an punch at another and crushing it.  Once more she is hit and she nearly goes to a knee.  She winces and lets out another cry, looking around herself as the demons surround her.  She isn't even sure she can see the area around her anymore.  Isn't sure if anyone is still alive as they crowd in.
    She can feel the exhaustion beginning to pour in.  Her very body is a combustion engine of light and power.  The more she pours out the more fuel it burns.  And burn it does.  She could hear Donna call out.  She knew that the others were there but she was getting slowly cut to shreds.  Then she clenches her fists and shakes her head.
    "No…."  She then suddenly flares with light and drops down for a moment before launching both hands upward and herself at the same time, sending up a beam of pure light and flying straight up for just a few seconds at mach 5.  The sound is likely defeaning.  She then whips in the air and spins around to look for where Rachel is and she flies straight toward the crystals holding her and as she does she launches a beam pure energized light right at the base of that cyrstalline structure before slamming a fist right into it herself, "Wake up!"
    She then will try another and another, "I did not come all this way to not save you!  Wake up!"  And she punches again, "People who love you are here!  People who care!  Heroes who will save you!"  And nothing but pure adrenaline drives her even as demons likely swarm toward her back and even as her hands begin to bloody.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate's six sense for danger, which is not like Spiderman or Captain Marvel, just she is pretty situationally aware and it helps that the two are shrieking as they dive for her is good warning.
    She tumbles forward and twists moving quickly from where she was to a new position where she draws two arrows, adjusts with her grip a bit, and does a Robin hood at the two demons who were after her.
"So… how hard do you hit?" she yells towards Donna.  Because that looked hard.  Kate draws a funky looking arrow and twists firing it for the crystal encasing Raven's legs.  It hits and lets off a sonic bang like a flash bang but no flash… probably good against alien symbiotes not that Kate has got to try it.
    The crystal is unscathed though.  "Frack."
    "Troia… do what Terry said… sleeping beauty… like… apologize her… hug her… fucking kiss her but brute strength ain't got this!" is her follow-up shout.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    «I don't know how to do that!  I just got these powers, I haven't even had a chance to train with them….»
    Terry looks around, frowning at the cloud of demons that swarm them.
    He narrows his eyes, seeing how much these demons criss-cross paths, swooping here and there… «Kian, I'm jumping.  You keep blasting.  I'm going to be the flea on their backs instead of the weight on yours!»
    Before Kian has a chance to object, Terry judges his jump, and leaps into the air the moment he feels an instinctive pull to do so.
    He sails through the air and, fortunately for him, lands on the back of one of the demons below him.
    Don't think.  Do.  Just go with the flow.  Don't think about anything else.
    Terry rakes his claws across the back of the demon, aiming to at least tear at a wing.  Is he successful?  he doesn't stay to look, because he's leaping across the air towards another demon, this time almost narrowly missing it, but managing to clamber up onto its back from an almost near-dangle before those talons come near him.  This body is fast.  He is nimble and acrobatic.  As long as he keeps moving… as long as he keeps finding something to jump on, he should be fine.  Rake, jump, land, claw, rake, rinse and repeat…
    He hasn't asked himself what will happen to him when there isn't a demon to jump onto.  He hasn't thought that far ahead yet.

Kian has posed:
    {Wait, don—} and the mental connection is cut off as soon as Terry leaps away—huh, he did land on the back of one.  Kían really didn't think he could make that jump.
    And of course, Terry is right—without the extra weight, Kían is faster, more agile, a genuine aerial acrobat.
    And now that he has a lot less to concentrate on… yes, in fact, he can bring a lot more lightning, directing it all upwards to avoid his friends, his…

Donna Troy has posed:
    Several things are becoming quickly clear from this battle.
    First is that these newcomers really do have a lot of promise.  Kate's accuracy is a thing to behold—arrows whistle through the air, finding their mark time after time.  Kian's acrobatic skills are too much for the demons to keep up with, and his energy blasts are certainly highly charged.  Terry's agility is astonishing—his catlike twists and turns make the attacking demons dizzy.  Naomi's strength in both fist and energy blast is more than these demons can handle.  There's little question the original Titans are going to be impressed.
    The second is that the original Titans are all they were cracked up to be.  It's one thing hearing about them in the news, it's another seeing them in action.  Nightwing's movement and awareness is phenomenal—he just never seems to be in the place any demons claws are.  Caitlin and Donna are powerhouses, destroying anything that gets close enough.
    The third thing that becomes clear is that the Titans, new and old, are doomed.  However many of the Demons they take out of the fight, more just keep coming.
    Shortly after the crack of Naomi's sonic boom, the air is rent by a second as Donna comes hurling out of a crowd of demons to plough into the ones approaching Naomi from behind.  "That's not going to work!" she calls out.  "Defend yourself!"
    Donna has lost her flail—presumably it had limited durability, but her lasso continues to lash out, pulling down demons and yanking them into each other.  To Kate, she calls out "This isn't a fairy tale!  C'mon people, think fast!"
    But in a way, it is.
    "It's a story…" Donna says.  "Her story.  The story she told herself to protect herself… no, to protect all of us… from her trauma."  Donna blocks swiping claws on her forearm, then lashes out a smashing blow to the demon's face.  She shoulder-charges another out of the air.  "You… uh… you two!" she calls down to Kate and Naomi.  Yeah, in all the rush she actually hasn't caught their names yet, but they are the two closest now.  "Hold them off!"
    Donna lands in front of Raven, and almost topples.  She hadn't realized quite how badly that leg was injured.  She rights herself and steps forwards.  One hand is red with blood, and a lot of it is her own, and the arm is too numb to make that hand into a fist any more.  More blood trickles down her face from a nasty looking cut on her forehead.  She stares at Raven for a moment.  It feels stupid.  Feels cliched.  But it's also, clearly, a desperate situation.  And Rae is kinda hot.
    Donna cups her good hand behind Rae's head, and looks into her unseeing eyes.  "Raerae?  This feels… god.  So awkward.  But we need you to wake up.  Please Rae?  I'll die for you if I have to, but I'd rather not."
    Donna leans forwards, and presses her lips to Rae's.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Everything is good for a moment.  There's so much teamwork.  So much clarity.  So much purpose.  So much potential.  It closes a gap that even Raven hadn't admitted had been there.  The presence not just of loosely associated heroes, but Titans.  All of them.  Some of them Teen.  The rest just Titans.
    Sadly, the enemy they're facing is one that Raven's been warning them of for years.  They're doing so well, but the amount of time they've spent amidst the legions of Trigon is too much.  The tactics they're using had been keeping his demons off-kilter.  That doesn't last forever.
    It happens to Kian first—without the cat on his back, he hasn't all-round vision.  The demons are vicious, and have conquered dozens of realities.  One flyer, no matter how good, is not enough to keep them off of themselves forever.  Every vulnerability, every lapse in Kian's perception is a window through which a demon assaults.
    Vorpal is next.  He's so worried about what'll happen when he doesn't have a demon to leap to that he doesn't understand that they're more clever than that.  He never won't—there are too many.  But what happens when he leaps to a demon that the rest don't like?  They aggress, bombing that one instantly.  With a relentless fervor that cannot be described.
    Without Donna to help, Cait is swarmed.  She's the toughest among the ones still in the sea of demons, but the waves are crashing down.  They don't care about her faith—as much as it bolsters her allies, it does not strike fear into the demons.  They want nothing but blood, and they're going to get it.
    Donna also drags mines—Kate and Naomi, on the ground with Dick—Donna's presence at Raven attracts… So much attention.  The swarm around Cait is small in comparison, because they fear the woman whose demense this is.  It is a testament to Dick's experience and skill that they're not immediately slain—because if nothing else, it is his guidance that allows them to hold the line.  Once again, Naomi is pivotal—even if the lot of them are going to be injured.
    The kiss.  It definitely completes a story—but this isn't a story of stories.  This is about emotions.  This is about feelings.  The emoticlones.  The core of Raven's abilities.  The kiss is almost just ceremony… And it causes not a stir in Raven.

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna watches Raven's face to see if the kiss works, but of course it does not.  Stories are sometimes not so forgiving.  Or maybe the problem was trying too hard to steer the story.
    She had felt beaten before, when she was facing Raven's Bravery and it had nothing for her but hatred.  The bravery of those who had come along for this ride brought her out of it, but she's beaten again.  The demons swarm.
    Everyone's going to die.
    Donna does not rejoin the desperate battle.  She leans forwards, resting her forehead on Rae's.  "I'm sorry," she whispers.  "I failed you.  I failed you again, like I did three years ago.  I was selfish and stupid and wrong and you all paid the price for it, and now I'm failing you again and these new Titans will pay the price."
    Her eyes go blurry, and she tries to blink away the tears that she suddenly can hold back no longer.  "Raerae.  I love you.  I…."  Her voice breaks in wracking, heartfelt sob.  "I love you all, you're my family.  My heart.  And I failed you.  I know now what I should have done then, but I don't know what to do now.  I don't know how to fix this.  I'm sorry.  I'm so sorry."
    Tears roll down her cheeks.  The fall on Raven's face, onto the folds of crystal encasing her, and dot the dry ground like the first drops of rain after a thousand-year drought.

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin puts herself out in front of the others.  Her face is set in a stern fury; fists swinging, periodically lashing out with a burst of light that seems gripped in her hands like some notional weapon.  Blood appears even on her redoubtable flesh as claws rend and tear.  She winces and cries out in pain, but it doesn't slow her in the slightest.  Caitlin's violence intensifies and she abandons any pretense at a defensive posture.  Anyone who looks like they're getting overwhelmed, Caitlin plunges to their aid.  Her back and arms are ribboned by talons.
    The fire in her doesn't dim.  Caitlin's a fighter, deep down, and she'll fight to the last.  But at the end of the day she's flesh and blood, and can be made to bleed like anyone else.
    But she'll fight on until her last breath.  Because that's what heroes do.

Kian has posed:
    Fundamentally, Kían is a fatalist—the universe is what it is, he should deal with it, and every now and then the Gods might cut him a little slack.  It's kind of the only thing that's kept him going since arriving on Earth, the need to not give up.  It isn't a competitive thing, or a selfish thing—to give up would disappoint his Gods, and he wouldn't want to do that.
    That's a lot easier to do when you've never realistically faced death before.
    More desperately than strategically, he surrounds himself with blinding, blazing light, a tiny star desperate to keep the darkness away….

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate is very fragile, in the just human and mortal like Dick sense not in the untrained bystander sense.
    She rolls out of the way and pulls out some bigger arrows, launching a very precious explosive arrow now at the various ones that were dragged towards her by Donna.  Trying to buy time and desperately leaning into all her training to not be clawed because those talons are sword sharp and large.  "Damnit I really thought the storybook thing would work…!"
    Be the tiger don't be the prey Kate… twist turn… yelp as she does get slashed.  Thankfully her suit is pretty high-tech armor weave but she is bleeding from her side now.  "Fuck… that hurts…."
    The scrum is a bit too close now for her bow so she slings it back with one hand and draws her sword on the back swing catching a demon in the face as they really start to crowd her.
    This Hawk has talons not just arrows.  "Don't give up hope… we can figure this out!"  She sounds a bit strained with the wound in her side bleeding through the claw gouges in her armor but she means it, twirling her sword to parry a swipe and stab a demon even as she loses more and more ground with each swing backing towards Donna and Rachel-Statue.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Well, at least he can say he tried.  Terry seems to have landed on the demon version of Intern Gary at the Planet, and everybody is about to dog pile him.
    When it's demons, is it cerberus-piling?
    The way he sees it, he can give them the satisfaction of tearing him to pieces, or he can go out on his own terms.  Raking his claws across the face of Demon Intern Gary to hopefully get him to fly into some of the others, he leaps off him…
    And down towards the void.
    It was like Wonderland all over again, except the end of this fall probably wouldn't have such a good ending.
    "…well, at least Gar wasn't here to see this," he says as he starts wooshing down.  So much for fairy tales.
    Once upon a time, there was a Cheshire cat….
    "Sorry, Gar.  It would've been great."
    He extends his arms to his sides and closes his eyes.  For all purposes, it was just a dive, nothing else.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    "I can't…."  Naomi winces as she feels the power ebbing.  She looks over at the others and blood drips from her lips.  She looks back to see what Donna is doing only to have her shoulder plate ripped clean off and she screams and turns back to clench her firsts, "No… I must!"  She winces and light begins to shine brightly from her.  "I have to!"  And she steps up to the front as well, her power flaring brightly as she takes the last embers of her power and enhances her muscles and her body to the point where she feels like she could fight anyone and anything.
    Beams of light arc from her hand followed by punch after punch even as the swarm of fury comes at her.  She never planned to die like this.  Not here.  She had more to do but life is like that sometimes.  So, fight she does.  Every punch flares brighter and brighter but there's a problem.
    The well… it is dry.
    Even as she fies off another blast of pure power, there's a look on her face of anguish and her eyes begin to look like those of a boxer who has taken too many hits.  The punches start to go wide and the blasts wild even as she drops slowly toward a knee.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    The sincerity.  The truth.  The love.  Kept bottled up inside Donna's mind and body, it wouldn't have mattered.  All the love in the universe wouldn't have changed anything.
    But the fool went ahead and made something physical.  They drip, falling from her face and landing on the crimson crystal binding Raven.  The reaction is instantaneous.  The crystal screams, an echoing, haunting voice that is familiar to those present.  Every time Raven has shifted, every moment she had more than two eyes, every word she uttered filled with hate and rage, it was this voice.  And now it's screaming in pain.  The crystalline structure grows more organic, and begins to writhe, fleeing the tears.
    Raven's eyes open.  At once, the visage of rage is pulled into her, forced to merge with the Real Raven, to be put back in its mental cell.  Where it belongs.
    "That was just melodramatic enough."
    Before Troia can rejoice, the weakness leaves Raven's voice, and two years of righteousness spill forth.  Her eyes go not black, but white, spilling forth a light not unlike Caitlin's.
    "Get out."
    The light takes them to pieces, spreading through the dimension of Raven's soul self in the breadth of some minuscule portion of a second.  The demons, the monsters that serve Trigon are gone.  Banished, dead, it doesn't matter.  What does matter is that Trigon sees her now, and languidly the great Conqueror is pulling himself to a stand.
    From the four corners of the nothing, the multi-colored Ravens fling themselves through the sky.  The first to arrive is orange, flopping around through the air as if she's unconscious, because she is.  Laziness collides unceremoniously with Kate—whom will notice swiftly that the orange one is incorporeal, and that she takes wounds with her when she parts.  A swift-eyed Donna will see them appear, momentarily, on Raven—whose return to herself is just enough to keep her body healing and keeping up.
    The next to arrive is Sadness, who is right now outright bawling.  After all, she is also Raven's pessimism, and even she realizes how high they are right now to fall from, should something like the events that kicked this off happen again.  Sadness sobs somewhat aggressively in midair, and strikes perhaps the most direly in need of it—flying through Naomi and taking her wounds to Raven as they merge.
    Kian is gifted with Bravery.  By gifted, perhaps, the better term might be flying-tackled-by, as the green-hoodied Raven armbars him, dragging him bodily through the air and away from where his desperation might lead him to fall.  Instead, when she finally goes incorporeal and passes through him, she pauses a moment to celebrate in the style that might get you kicked out of an American Football game, before lurching into the air and happily reuniting with Raven.
    A yellow light comes from under Terry, who thuds into the Smart Raven's arms She adjusts her glasses as she takes him up to the platform—phasing through him six feet above Kian.  If his injuries hadn't gone with her, he might land on the bird.  But, hey, at least he's not falling forever into the void of Raven's soul self, the only bottomless pit that would come to hate him!
    A pink streak, zooms in from nowhere, pausing only to outright tackle-hug Caitlin's glowing, resolute form with such fervor that not even the six-four redhead can avoid being bowled over.  This one never really goes incorporeal, and apparently the healing power of hugs is what helps Caitlin, because Happiness is all laughs and smiles.  She visits everyone, despite the siren's call of reunion, giving hugs and thumbs up and congratulations to the new Titans most of all.
    Next to Troia, the Raven in purple simply appears from the aether.  "You had to mean it.  That's the thing.  Maybe when we wake up, yeah?  Because we mean it."  And then, Love is rejoined—despite that she never touched Donna, her wounds have disappeared as well.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Honestly Kate doesn't have a proud moment, she flails at the orange Raven when it insubstantials around the demons then through her like that.  Okay.  That was… very…
It was an experience.  She yawns a little and looks around confused at everything then turns to catch the one in purple and watches the exchange with Troia and then back into Raven.  "Ah yiss…" she mutters then winces and holds her side.  Wound may be gone but the claw marks in her armor are still there scratching her pink skin underneath.  "Fucksticks"

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Or maybe he won't die a horrible death in the everlasting abyss of Raven.  The Cheshire cat oofs and opens his eyes, only to look up at Brainy Raven's face.
    "…the timing was a bit close…" he says, but then he finds himself falling—a short distance, at least, as his Raven phases out.
    "Ooof—sorry Kian…."  Who knew?  Bird people make for soft landings.
    He rolls off and tries to get up to his feet, but only manages to sit up because his knees have decided to shake.
    "Are we all alive?" he asks, incredulously.

Kian has posed:
    As if Kían could make any sense out of what was happening to begin with… he rights himself in midair before anything has really registered.  No more demons?  No more claw marks?  But… no, trying to make sense of this is only going to make his brain hurt.
    He alights next to Terry.  Hand to shoulder.  {Why are we still alive?}  It's not an existential philosophical query, it's a genuine question.  They were about to die.  They didn't.
    {I'm confused,} he adds, a little plaintively.

Rachel Roth has posed:
    Rejoined to the Core, Raven's attention turns to her father—the piece of him that's here in not just her mind—but her soul.  There will always be some fraction—some tiny, infinitesimal portion that is Raven's Rage.
    This intrusion, however.  This unconscionable aggression into her very being is so far beyond unacceptable that, now that it is part of her, even Raven's Anger is part of the coalition to remove her father.
    "You have no Power here.  And as long as I draw breath, you Never WILL!"
    The strength in those last words—there is a finality to them.  What she utters next are the focusing words.  She casts without them more often than not—especially as she's gotten older… But this time is different.  This time she's expelling her father from her soul, and that requires some level of focus.
    "Azarath.  Metrion.  Zinthos!"
    Her eyes are gone, replaced again by those bursting pillars of bright light.  Her hands encased in a bubble-corona of darkness that is surrounded by a spinning circle of runic symbols.  She moves her hands away from one another and a portal opens up behind Trigon, ripping open the hellscape as if it were naught but wallpaper to uncover what lie beneath: Seemingly the impossible darkness of a black hole, pulled apart and opened just for the removal of her father.
    He fights—aggressively, clawing at the two-dimensional rim of the rift and howling in furious agony, betrayal, and desperation.  Were he to be here, screaming like that, the Titans might have shaken apart like glass.  Yet, in combination with Cait, each of the emoticlones and Raven herself have imparted a seemingly immunity to Trigon's presence in her soul-self.  The fight lasts longer than it has any right to—a fraction of a fraction of Trigon is near enough a match for the black hole concept summoned to get rid of it, Raven's might on the incipisphere brought to bear only inasmuch as she thought she needed right then.  Ready is she to redouble her efforts when the demons fingers slip, and the portal sutures itself shut, the hellscape fading away into the pitch blackness of some nebulous space.
    At that, the floating form of Raven—the real, full, actualized Titan, turns to face the others present.  "Yes, you're all alive."  Two, slow, claps.  Happiness had congratulated them enough.  Raven was here to smear on the sarcasm.  When the second clap is finished, they start disappearing—not necessarily slowly, but not all at once.
    Nobody is dropped unceremoniously—everyone is returned to where they stood in her bedroom the moment Donna—and Cait, to be fair—touched the mirror.  The armor damage remains—and they'll all be sore in the places they were carved up, but the wounds don't really remain.  Not the physical ones, at least.
    Despite that it's lacking in dignity, Raven is slowly pulling herself to a stand with muscles and bones that haven't been used in two years.  So much less impressive than moments ago, when she had full faculties, in her own soul.

Donna Troy has posed:
    The physical wounds are healed, but Donna's used to physical wounds.  The emotional wounds will leave scars for some time.
    They may allow other emotional wounds to start healing, though.
    Donna watches Raven slowly rebuilding herself, emotion by emption, with an expression on her face that is mostly sheer exhuastion.  When the resynthesis is complete, she nods her head weakly to Raven.  "I understand.  The words though.  I meant the words."
    "All of them.  Then and now."
    Donna stands, barely, exhaustion both physical and mental pulling at her.  She watches, unable to properly form an emotional response as Raven heals her own mental landscape and actualizes herself.  And then, they are back, standing around in the dust of Raven's room.  She turns slowly, counting heads, making sure that everyone is still standing.  When she decides they are, she takes a deep breath, and starts speaking.  "My name is Troia.  Donna Troy is my assumed identity, my code name.  Not the other way around.  There is no such thing as the Knights of Ilios.  I made that up because I was forbidden to reveal the existence of my home at the time.  Now I can.  I'm Themysciran."
    She becomes suddenly, awkwardly aware of the lasso glowing in her hands, which might have clued the observant into that fact already.  The light fades, and she loops it back up again.  "I'm not proud of that lie, but it was not my decision.  Three years ago Queen Hippolyta sent word that I should return to finish my training.  That was true.  That I was ordered back sooner was not.  I just felt…."  She shakes her head.  "I was running away from things.  I should have been there for Doomsday, for the Titans… and I was not.  When I heard the Titans had gone their separate ways I thought it was too late to do anything and did not return, when I should have returned faster.  I am sorry."
    "All of you are wonderful.  Old Titans and new.  None of you deserved the consequences of my actions.  I cannot undo them, I can only say sorry."
    She turns back to look at Raven, eyes wider than ever.  She doesn't know what happens next, but she steps forwards to offer Raven the strength of her own arms.

Naomi McDuffie has posed:
    Slowly, Naomi blinks.  She saw all that.  She looked on as everything took place.  She watched the passing sadness Raven go by.  She watched Trigon fight to win and lose.  She reappeared in Raven's room, she looked down as Raven slowly pulled herself up.  She looked over at Donna as she spoke.
    And the whole time her mouth hang partially open and her eyes looked glossy.
    "Hey, that's great and I have no idea what just happened but I am so glad we were all victorious and can I stay the night."
    And with that, her eyes roll back in her head, her powers literaly just turn off.  Her armor fades and flickers out, bursting into what appears to be specs of light even as she falls into the dust on the floor, a girl now dressed in more normal clothing with a pair of glasses that slump off to the side of her face as she hits, passing out completely… and likely unable to be woke up for quite a while.

Kate Bishop has posed:
    Kate pops her neck and then settles listening to Donna's admission and speech.  "Nice to meet you Troia… I'm Kate."  She glances around the gathered.  The rest will come later name wise, but it is like she made a decision there after that encounter in Raven's soul.  She told Col, Gar, Kian, and Terry she probably should tell the others if people are really going to be doing this.  It isn't that hard a decision for Kate.
    She glances down at her gear and hisses "Damn… that was not just in our heads."  Gingerly touching the claw marks.  "I… vote for pie and no more near death experiences tonight."
    She glances to Caitlin "What kind of pie is it?"
    There is a pause as she looks down at Naomi "Also… we should dump her in a bed… are there empty bed rooms in here?"

Terry O'Neil has posed:
    Terry sinks to his knees and exhales, almost at the same time that Naomi crashes.  He reaches into his shorts and extracts the mirror.
"W-we're all m-mad here," he says, and there is a similar display of lights, but more muted, than when he first transformed.  The red-headed teen is left in the place of the cheshire cat, and he looks exhausted.  His green eyes lift and look at Donna.
    "You're… you're an Amazon?"  He stares.  So many questions.  Many of which he can't formulate right now.
    "…nice to meet you.  I'm… Terry O'Neil.  And I'm also apparently the Cheshire cat, and before you ask it's a long story.  Can I… can you guys just not tell Gar?  I'll… I'll tell him his forehead.  "in a few days.  I'd just rather he find out from me personally.  And right now I just want to crash on the couch and sleep until noon his forehead.  "in a few days."  He rubs his forehead.  "The couch downstairs.  Not… Rae's."  He thinks he has enough energy to get down there, at least.
    "…hey.  We're alive…."

Caitlin Fairchild has posed:
    Caitlin staggers and blinks a little owlishly as they're returned to reality.  It's not the smoothest transition, but at least she's not bleeding anymore.  The mirrored, transient afterimages around her vanish away as they're returned to a more objective reality.
    Ever the pragmatist, the first thing Caitlin does is check herself for bleeding wounds; then, the newer Titans, starting with the visibly depleted Naomi as the girl collapses.  A finger finds a pulse and she cocks an ear to catch the wispy sound of breathing.  Once she's sure Naomi's not dying, she picks her up with little visible effort and puts her into an empty chair.  "I think she's just exhausted," Caitlin reassures the others—and then moves to check Kate, Terry, and Kian with a careful once-over, just in case anyone else is on the verge of fainting or there are some wounds that were missed.
    "Blueberry and apple," Caitlin tells Kate, with an approving smile.  The archer clearly has her priorities in order.  "You did great.  All of you did," she assures the newer additions to the team.  The redhead glances down at her shredded shirt and grumbles under her breath, then pulls it away from her torso and tosses it aside.  Beneath it is a midriff baring sports top that's part of her costumed attire.  Scratched and stretched, yes, but clearly made of some much sturdier material that resists tearing or cutting.
    The conversation between Donna and Raven gets her attention.  She nods slow confirmation at Terry's rhetorical question; Caitlin was one of the few privy to that fact.
    "Donna, it wasn't your fault," Caitlin tells Troia gently.  "It wasn't anyone's fault."  She glances at the older Titans.  Not intending to cut the new ones out of the conversation… but it's something that needs to be said to the old crew.
    "You couldn't have known what was going to happen next.  None of us could.  None of us were able to stop it," she says.  Caitlin takes a deep breath.  "I know Nightwing's been beating himself up for not coming up with some perfect tactics.  I've been beating myself up for not being there to hold everyone together after.  Donna for not being there.  Raven—" she finally addresses her friend directly.  Caitlin swallows once.  Talking to Raven directly is not something Caitlin does often.  "You're beating yourself up for not doing the impossible."
    "Doomsday curb stomped the entire Justice League and every ally they had.  I—I know for me, I was scared of it happening again.  But look," she says, gesturing at the new additions.  "Don and Kole gave their lives for the cause.  I used to think that… that I wasn't good enough to live up to that sacrifice.  These new guys, they were willing to go to the wall for a total stranger," she says, gesturing at Raven.  "That's the spirit of the Titans.  That's what we need to focus on."
    "Being a family again."

Kian has posed:
    Kían looks shaken; his wings are spread a little, and the feathers standing out, and it's only with an effort that he folds them again, and finally damps down that blue glow of his.  "I… do no… un'er's'tan," he says in shaky, sibilant English.  "Iss… alife?  Ash tyr'tái?"
    He slumps back against a wall, still pale.  "Iss… this hwat hyu do?" he asks, more than a little incredulously.  "c'Rhys'yw…."

Donna Troy has posed:
    Donna wraps a strong arm around Raven, giving her the support to stand her weakened muscles struggle with.  Having said her speech, she listens intently to the others as they too have their says.
    She has talked these things over with Caitlin in the past.  Caitlin is the one person in the Titans who already knew what she had just revealed, and knew how deeply Donna had shared the guilt of the Titans who had been around for Doomsday.  She wasn't convinced in the past, and she's not entirely convinced now, but that is a conversation she'll have with her old friend another time.  More importantly is Caitlin's last comment.  Donna nods her agreement, and turns to the newcomers.  "You were all magnificent.  Without your strength?"  She doesn't finish the thought.  She doesn't need to.  "I still don't know all your names.  But I consider you brothers and sisters.  Whenever you need me, I will be there for you."
    Terry's pronouncement elicits a look of mild confusion.  "Cheshire cat?  Like from Alice in Wonderland?  That's… oh, well I guess it makes sense.  You fought fiercely, with the claws that go snicker-snack.  No, wait.  The claws that slash.  What was it that went snicker-snack then?"  She gives a puzzled frown.  More mysteries for another time.
    "There are many rooms in the tower.  Anyone who needs a place to rest can have one."  She turns and looks at Raven, and with a swift motion lifts her up in both arms.  "Rae, your bedroom is a terrible mess," she says as she makes for the door.  "But the neighbors will complain if we start vacuuming so late.  Come, let's find you somewhere cleaner to rest."