Darkness, Our Old Friend
***DISCLAIMER: The characters depicted in this story do not belong to me. I do not make any money from this.
She was a Titan now. It was where she’d wanted to be ever since her first stint on Roy’s team. This time, she even had friends, even if none of them were girls. She also had people willing to train with her, to make her better. And Victor was always willing to tell her about past Titans and the weird things they’d gone up against.
Rose had just never realized exactly how weird some of the stuff was. It was one thing to hear about portals from other dimension opening up and spitting people out, but to actually have it happen to her was an entirely different thing.
Good thing she didn’t really have a secret identity, because she was in civvies when the girl fell on top of her. Not really a girl; the dark-haired woman in black leather and denim looked about her age.
“Oof!” the brunette said as she landed. Rose couldn’t help a gasp herself; the woman was all muscle, sort of like Cassie.
Hopefully she was nothing else like the Wonder Bitch or Rose’s day would be completely ruined. And after all the trouble she went through to sneak out to a rave on the bad side of town, too.
“Sorry,” the brunette said, and flipped to her feet and off Rose. She was halfway through offering Rose a hand up when Rose pulled the same move.
Rose just looked at the other woman, waiting. The brunette winced away from the scrutiny and looked up to stare at the portal, which chose that moment to shrink and disappear. “Damnit,” she said.
“Hate it when that happens?” Rose couldn’t help but snark.
The brunette shrugged. Rose had the feeling she would cheerfully – or stonily – stay silent if given half the chance. But that would get them nowhere.
The brunette gave her a calculating look and then seemed to figure ‘Why the hell not?’ “I’m Faith,” she said, almost sounding bored.
Rose gave a sharp nod. “So, was that a teleportation portal or a dimensional portal?”
Faith shrugged again. “I’m thinkin’ dimensional, but won’t know for sure until I get my hands on a newspaper or somethin’.”
Seeing that Faith was treating the idea of trans-dimensional travel as an ordinary thing, Rose decided to do the same. “You got any idea how you ended up here?”
“There was a fight, some witch threw a blue ball of flame at me, and…” Faith gestured up to where the portal wasn’t. “Didn’t think the bitch had that much power in her.”
“You got people who’ll be looking for you to bring you back?” Rose asked. Faith was a fighter, that was obvious. She was used to fending for herself; that was also obvious. But the other little tells were adding up into a picture Rose was finding very familiar.
Another shrug of her shoulders and Faith said, “Only to make sure I don’t cause trouble.” She seemed more resigned to the idea than depressed by it, so the glum look on her face had to stem from something else.
Rose had a feeling she knew what. “I know some people who could help you get back,” she told Faith.
Faith shrugged – again; it was almost as if she had a world’s weight of guilt on her shoulders that she couldn’t get rid of – and said brazenly, “And what if I don’t wanna go back?”
The brazenness couldn’t hide the lost, soul-deep hurt lurking in her eyes behind the challenge, however. Rose knew it for what it was; she saw it in the mirror every morning, if not in stereo.
Rose reached out, placing one hand carefully on the other young woman’s shoulder. One wrong move and she’d bolt, Rose could tell from how skittish Faith was under the bravado. “Then those same people can help you settle in here.” Oooh, she was going to catch Hell for that from the other Titans, but it wasn’t like she didn’t for practically everything else she did.
Faith relaxed under her hand, if only minutely. “What about you?” she asked with a lick of her lips. “You just going to leave me all alone with them? Not afraid I might be dangerous…”
Rose smirked. She knew this, too, and while some people might say she’d be taking advantage of someone who was vulnerable…Faith would no more let anyone take advantage of her than Rose would. “Oh, I know you’re dangerous, honey. That’s what I like about you.”
Faith smirked back, the dark, heated glint in her eyes telling Rose all she needed to know. Things weren’t so bad for Faith that a little time alone with someone who understood couldn’t make them better. “We don’t have to talk to those people right away…” the brunette suggested.
“So?” Rose asked, cocking one hip to the side as she gestured to her motorcycle. Her oversized leather jacket fell off her shoulder to reveal a long expanse of skin left bared by her ice-blue halter top.
“Sounds five-by-five to me, Rosie-girl,” Faith with a wicked grin, even as she eyed the expanse of skin left bare by Rose’s silver halter top and black jacket.
“I prefer two-by-two, myself,” Rose returned, wit as sharp as her swords. “Climb on; the sooner we go, the sooner we…come.”
Faith’s laughter rung out into the heat of the San Francisco night as they sped uptown towards the Tower’s dock. Rose grinned and gunned the engine, going even faster. Whatever might happen in the next little while, it would surely be interesting.