EDIT 9/6/2014: Working on preparations to shorten this fic. I'm not going to be able to keep up with it as I originally planned, but I don't want to leave an unfinished story lying around. In the coming weeks, I'll finish this fic finally, so never fear lurkers. It will also serve as my over do goodbye to the forums. I cannot overstate how important this fan fiction board was to me when I was younger, and it's time for me to stop dipping into the old nostalgia tank. So--as of the time of this editing--I hope to see you guys next week to kick off the end. Much love. Original: Wow. I'm back. I couldn't be happier to be at the old forum again. I've been reading a bit of "Punisher Max" lately, and to say the least it's been addictive. If you know anything about that, then you'll realize that it's a series that has a very harsh tone. Plus, "Max" is just an awesome monicker to tack onto a title. So--in 2010 I said that I was going to stop writing Titans Fan Fiction, but that just doesn't seem to be the case because I still love them after all these years. I'm back again with an on going series. It consists of a couple of story arcs that tie into the overall story . Each arc will be a different plot line, but it ties together in a way that is pretty much exactly like you would find in a comic book. This is not tied into my former Fan Fictions in any way, though I doubt that anybody even remembers them at this point. For a frame of reference, this takes place after the events of Season Five of the Teen Titans. Anyway--without further hubbub, lets kick off the premiere. WARNING: Rated JOKER for Strong Language, Extreme Violence, Gore, and Some Sexual Content. TITANS: MAX Don't Say a Word PART ONE “W-What?” It seemed as though the wind was picking up energy with almost static electricity in the air promising a deadly storm ahead. Beast Boy forced himself to stay standing in the same spot. He didn’t dare to move, not a single a muscle. Those few steps forward wouldn’t do anything at all. It was a pointless endeavor. The trees waved around him, looming over him in the dim light of the night. Rather than a pitch black, the sky was somewhat blue, the clouds eating up any hope of a new dawn. Then—he felt it in his chest. From his core to his eyes, he felt the pain waling up inside. The sobs came out so violently, so quickly, that he wretched over collapsing onto the ground. There—right in his focus—lay a plaque that seemed ironic at that moment. “A Teen Titan, a True Friend.” **** A few weeks before. The bar was dingy, filled with smoke and forgotten dreams. Up at the counter, a man was slumped over next to his stack of empty bottles, a cigarette burning to ash in his unconscious hand. His clothes were dingy, stained from every type of food imaginable. The thick hair atop his head seemed to be caked in grease from lacking proper washing for the past year or so. He reeked of cheap booze and stale smoke. “Ya’ look down on yer’ luck, friend.” His booze hazed sleep ended abruptly as he looked up to a man in a well tailored suit that probably cost more than the rent of a cheap apartment. “So the next drink’ll be on me, aye? Ya’ look like ya’ need it.” The broken man put the remains of his cigarette in an ash tray ahead of him, glancing up at his current savior; anyone was a savior if they offered to buy the next drink. He smirked, “You have—You have no idea.” The man in the suit sat next to him, taking his cap off and setting it on the bar, “Oh—I’ve been in yer position before.” He motioned two fingers at the bar tender, “After some heavy nights o’ drinkin’, I finally got me act togetter.” “I think I’m a little past that. . .” The beers slid back on, the bar tender eyeing the sullen man. He stretched a bit, and in a surprisingly felt swoop nursed his beer a little, “You sound like your getting ready to give me a business pitch, friend.” The suited man simply giggled, not even touching his drink, “Maybe I am? Would ya’ be willin’ to listen?” “Look, if you haven’t noticed, this is the type of place where people like me can be forgotten.” With a big gulp this time, the ragged man sat his drink back on the bar, rubbing his hand through his untamed beard. “I don’t—I’m not stupid. I’m drunk, not stupid, and chances are a big shot like you coming down here to talk to me in some pi** ant little bar in the slums of Jump City can only mean that you knew who I was before all,” he motioned to his appearance, “this.” “Oh aye. You were funded by some big backers in the day, with yer research bein’ what it was.” He smirked, brushing some crumbs off his tailored pants, “I wasn’t takin’ ya’ fer an idiot, not someone a’ your stature. I know all a’ tha details on “The Little Bird” project, how it fell through and whatnot Mr. Elliot.” “Then you must realize that I don’t want to be anywhere near it anymore—or in bed with the people I was in bed with.” Elliot reached in his tattered jacket for his pack of cigarettes, making the sullen discovery that they were gone. “Who are you? Are the big and bad afraid I’m going to speak to the wrong people? If that’s the case, s**t, save the build up and kill me now. It’s not like I have anywhere I have to be anymore.” “Mr. Elliot, I am not here to kill ya’. If that were the case, youda’ just went to sleep fer the night, and that would be that.” The man in the suit produced a new pack of cigarettes, sliding them over to Elliot. “In this case, I’m a business man doin’ businessey things. What if I were to offer ya’ all the fundin’ you’d ever need?” Rejecting the cigarettes, Elliot shook his head, “I’d say that you were full of crap. The investors all pulled out at the first sign of trouble when that stupid kid stole the most important—” “That ain’t the case now.” The man leaned forward, the smiling wiping across his face even bigger, “Ya’ see, I’m not wit’ tha former employers ya’ worked fer, so I could give a s**t less what any investors think a’ yer work. Mr. Elliot—I’m in the business a’ revenge.” He leaned back again, relaxing his demeanor, “Obviously, ya’ know the Titans.” “Obviously.” Grabbing the pack of cigarettes and swiftly shoving one in his mouth, Elliot searched for his lighter without success, “What do you have in mind?” The man produced the lighter, the tip of the cigarette just starting to burn a brilliant orange, “How about tha’ beginnin’ of a beautiful friendship?” **** “Hey…” “Ermmm….” “Hey—Hey Raven…” “Uggghhh….” “Hey—Hey Raven!” “WHAT!? What are you doing in my room!?” “Are you awake?” The sun beamed through the now open curtains like the hellish light a person experiences in the throws of a horrid hangover. Raven darted straight up in her bed, her seething eyes finding a little green person with a huge smile holding back the curtains to her large windows. Beast Boy bellowed triumphantly, “So are you ready to experience the BEST-DAY-EVER!?” “My thoughts on that as of right now would have to be no—I-am-trying—to sleep!” In an indigo blur Raven burrowed underneath her sheets, shielding her body from the deadly rays of the sun. Not even slightly taking the hint, Beast Boy stupidly hopped up onto the bed, shaking her violently, “But come on! It’s not every day that the two of us get to go to only the best theme park in the city—The Magical Forrest Adventure!” Even muffled, her anger struck a harsh chord, “Beast Boy—if you do not get off my bed now, you’re about to have a magical adventure through my window.” Beast Boy pulled the sheets back, revealing the demon that lay below, “Pleeeeaasse? It’s noon already! Half the day is gone!” He smiled, giving her a kiss on the forehead, “Besides—it’s not every day that you get the Beast Boy date experience!” She tried to conceal the smirk that was bubbling up from the kiss on the forehead, but it still somehow managed to find its way out when she stared into his green, pleading eyes. “Okay, I’ll get up. However, if you ever shake me out of bed again, I will end you.” BB giggled, “Deal.” He quickly made his exit from the room with a hop in his step, closing the door behind him. Raven sat in the bed a moment, rubbing her eyes in a bit of exhaustion. It didn’t take her long to get ready. It was the same thing every day, after all; make up, black leotard, a bit of finessing with her hair, and one of her many cloaks. Ready to take on the day, she made the long journey from her room down to the living room. Sat in the chairs in front of her were Robin and Cyborg, playing a video game pretty intently while yelling at each other at levels that should have been shattering every window in Titans’ Tower, with Starfire on the far end of the couch trying to take up knitting as a hobby. Everything that Starefire wound up making would be odd, malformed clothes that nobody in their right mind would dare to look at, much less to wear. Beast Boy was in the kitchen, tossing a pan into the air violently to make a show. He was cooking his “world famous” tofu eggs, something that the rest of the group cringed at the very mention of. “Raven—I’m just finishing up your breakfast!” With his chef hat on, it was obvious to see that he was taking the utmost pride in his current work. “Uhm—Thanks Beast Boy.” Please let me get through without throwing up. She walked over to the couch, peeking over the virtual combating Titans. “OH—you are so goin’ down now, Robin!” A huge explosion on the screen seemed to signify the end of the battle. “Booyeah,” Cyborg cried out in victory. Robin replied by throwing the controller down on the ground, “Pfft—I wasn’t really trying.” “Competitive much, little man?” The smug smile on Cyborg’s face seemed to burn right into the very fiber of Robin’s being. The boy wonder simply gritted his teeth, trying not to say anything else. “Ya’ know Robin—it’s okay to cry, especially when you just got your butt whipped as hard as ya’ did.” “Cyborg…” You could almost see the fumes coming off of Robin’s head, a sullen expression of anger and defeat taking over his entire face. Starfire glanced up at the two, “Friends, there is no need for such harsh words. How about you take these nice scarves that I have knitted for you as a peace token between you?” Dumbfounded silence was what Starfire got in return for her offering. They immediately got back into bickering, “Come on! Just admit it, Robin, Cyborg is better at this than you! I can help you get the words out, just move your mouth like--” “Children!” The two turned back around to Raven with puppy dog expressions of guilt, “Am I going to have to take your toy away?” The video game system began to lift in a pool of black energy. “Uh—No, no, we’ll stop.” Cyborg turned around from Raven in fear that the video game console was about to take a flying leap across the room. “Yeah—we were just—playing.” Robin forced an awkward smile that seemed like something a sociopath would do to fake emotion. “Voila! Hey Raven, heads up!” Beast Boy’s food was apparently ready, but Raven wasn’t ready for the heap of food to come flying across the room on a plate. She turned just in time to get covered in an explosion of tofu eggs. From beneath the mess, her eyes pierced through. “Oh—uh—Sorry. Heh. . .yeah.” **** “Ya’ look like a million dollers, sir.” In some mechanized rhythm, the metal door in front of them almost disassembled as they passed through. Obviously, the security there was going to be a lot better than what Elliot had experience before. Elliot now clean shaven, hair styled, and suited up from one of the finest tailors in the city smiled in victory, “I definitely feel like it.” “Ya’ should.” The man that had come to him in the expensive suit, with promises of riches and vengeance, had given Elliot everything except for. . . “You still haven’t told me your name.” Elliot stepped through the doorway, into the darkness of what was obviously a large room from the echo. The man simply smiled at Elliot. “Names are fer’ people that exist. I don’t, in a matter a’ speakin’. If yer’ needin’ to call me somethin’, just refer to me as,” the lights in the room illuminated, “Mr. Calypso.” The room held everything that Elliot could have ever wanted to continue his experiments. Every wall was lined with displays, there were large tubes over to the side, an atom displacement vacuum sealed chamber, and even what looked like a store of electronics in the next room large enough to build anything he needed to build. “Is this to yer fancy, Mr. Elliot?” Elliot smirked at the surroundings in disbelief. “To pay for this--who are you working for—God?” “He would prefer ta’ remain anonymous, but he refers ta’ himself as such on accasion’.” Calypso smirked, putting on his cap. “Ya’ have work ta’ do, Mr. Elliot. I’ll leave ya’ to it.” The door they had entered closed rapidly, leaving Elliot to his play room. The Teen Titans were about to get a dose of vengeance, long over due. **** Crowded. Hot. Hot and crowded. Beast Boy better be glad that I like him as much as I do. I hate theme parks. Raven’s thoughts were cut short as she was dragged along deeper into the park, brushing past tons of children being dragged by parents in the same fashion. He had a tight grip on her hand, trying to get her to the back of the park in a “fail proof” strategy to get to the best rides in the back of the park where people wouldn’t be at yet. The humidity was thick enough that this running toward the back of the park made her feel soaked from the back of her head to the lower part of her back. “Scuse’ me, comin’ through!” Beast Boy had no qualms about running anyone over that just so happened to be in his way. “Beast Boy, can we—can we slow down a little?” “Come on Raven! We need to get back there before everybody else makes their way there!” The fake rain forest theme the park had going on annoyed Raven. Around every corner was some sort of animatronics bird, tiger, or whatever animal that one would find in every place but a forest. It was a mash up of creatures that were there just to look cool. Every single ride in the park was themed after one of the animals. The Janglin’ Jack Rabbit! The Great White Cracklin’ Cruise! Bumper Bear Cars! Of course, being the new girlfriend, Raven was still in a stage of the relationship where she tried to support the things that Beast Boy was interested in. She had even picked up a comic book or two, which had actually turned out to be something that she was interested in. The success of reading the comic books was the only thing that had sold her on even trying out the idea of coming to the theme park in the first place. Finally, after trudging through the cheerful wasteland, the two had reached their destination. It was a roller coaster that was simply named, “The Beast”. The idea that this was BB’s favorite ride no longer seemed to be in question as to why. “The—Beast?” Beast Boy was taken back by her as they both got into line, “Uh—Yeah! It’s only the best ride ever of all time, Raven!” They stepped into line, which was not clear of people like Beast Boy had planned. The line waiting time was estimated at an hour and a half. Raven stared at the sign that explained her fate for the next hour. It’s only an hour—just stay calm and don’t hurt anyone. After twenty minutes or so, waiting in line was very similar to be locked in prison for Raven. Trying the best of her ability to stay there, she couldn’t take it anymore. She tapped Beast Boy on the shoulder, hard. There was no response. He was focused on something in the distance outside the line. Beast Boy was hard focused on something that made him tremble slightly. “Beast Boy, what. . .” He had reason to stop, reason to tremble. A chill went up her spine as she found what he was staring at. The name fell out of Beast Boy’s mouth like a sharp pain, “Terra.” **** With access to his former research, however Calypso and his benefactor had procured it all, it took only half a week for him to get back to where his project status had been before. After that, it only took another week for “The Little Bird” project to be finished. At the moment of completion, on cue Calypso made his appearance back in the lab. He made a swagger over to Elliot, a big smile drenched across his face. “Mr. Elliot, I am—ta’ say the least, I’m impressed.” He clapped his hands together, “Ya’ managed all this in just over a’ week! I knew ya’ were the man ta’ get the job done right an’ quick.” “I just can’t believe that it’s finally finished—it feels like I’ve been working on this for years.” As big as the accomplishment was, the fruit of his labor was only about the size of a gulf ball. He held it up in between his fingers, staring at it like it was a grand treasure. “Great!” Calypso gave him a friendly pat on the shoulder, “Are ya’ ready ta’ give it a whirl?” “Oh—Oh no. I still need time to test it—and to find a test subject who would be qualified to use it.” Calypso’s demure quickly shifted to that of a silent rage. “Mr. Elliot, we don’t have time ta’ test it. Me benefactor wanted it out on the field as soon as it was completed. It was tha’ terms a’ our deal.” Elliot felt the subtle shift in the air, “Well—I—Give me a few days to find someone suitable to-” “So we can spend anotter week trainin’ him? Think a’ it this way—yer the one that made it, ya’ know how it works, why not take things into yer own hands?” Calypso was trying the hard sell, now. Suave, charming, but Elliot wasn’t buying it. “I couldn’t. I mean—it’s dangerous-” “Revenge always is, Mr. Elliot.” Panic began to creep up the edges of Elliot’s being, “I—I mean—the surgery alone would require me to. . .” Calypso took off his cap, setting it on the console in front of them, getting dangerously close to Elliot. “Don’t ya’ worry about that, I’ll take care of it.” A sharp pain sifted into the back of Elliot’s neck. The world around him began to shift around in liquid shapes, his limbs starting to go limp beneath him. Calypso snagged the device out of his hands before Elliot finally tumbled to the ground. All the lights from the ceiling began to have blurred traces in his vision. Calypso set the device on the console, rolling up his sleeves as he looked down at the fading man before him, “My employer wants someone with belief on tha job.” With a smile, Calypso leaned over, “Ya’ got belief. Ya’ got hate in yer eyes. This was meant ta happen, Mr. Elliot.” As the world began to fade away in a black pool, Calypso raised an eyebrow, “Tha Titans aren’t gonna’ go out inna’ explosive battle, but inna’ dead silence from tha inside out.” The world was now the size of a peek hole to Elliot. “Thomas, yer gonna’ be that silence. An’ when it’s over, a hush is gonna’ fall over the entire world…” To Be Continued. . .