The Beast Inside

The Titans have united with old allies to defeat the great threat that is Slade once again but it is not a simple task, for the masked mastermind has assembled an army of fearsome villains to help his cause. Robin's plan was simple: find a way to breach the walls of the citadel and then unite their strength to defeat their nemesis. It was going quite smoothly until Raven got taken away before Beast Boy's eyes. Then it went from bad to worse when Robin got captured as Starfire was supposed to watch his back. Both the green teen and the tamarean princess are deeply affected by this. Cyborg, who is barely able to fight after being injured, can only hope to calm them down and get the team back on tracks. The Teen Titans' power does not reside only in their powers, and the half machine man knows that all too well, but will he be able to convey this to them? He can't help but wonder, however, what Slade's plan is and why some of the Titans are behaving strangely...


12. Chapter 12 - The Beast Boy

Best Boy's mouth hung open as he pointed a finger at the creature who had just stepped into the light.

"No…" He repeated, his voice barely audible and his eyes wide.

"Yes." His voice echoed once more into the darkness surrounding both of them as the creature spoke. "Now you understand..." It added.

Beast Boy couldn't believe his eyes, his mind worked at a thousand miles per hour, trying to process what he was seeing, what his mind was telling him was true but his heart didn't want to believe. He stood in front of an exact replica of himself, same height, same green skin and same messy hair. The creature now looked like a clone of himself. No, he thought, not a clone. It's me… Despite him thinking that, he couldn't accept what he was seeing, what it meant.

"No, that's not possible!" He shouted at the creature. "You- You can't be! Stop that, it's not funny!"

He lunged at his exact replica but, as if it was reading his mind, the copy evaded his punched with incredible speed by simply stepping sideways. As he got back up he saw his doppelganger laugh.

"You know it's true, deep down inside you, you always knew Beast Boy. But we don't have time for that!", as Beast Boy launched himself once more towards the creature it caught his fist and turned the teen over, slamming him on the ground in his back.

The creature leaned over Beast Boy and laughed again, morphing his arm into the werewolf's again and pressing his large claws against the neck of the young Titan.

"I was always there. When you were made into what you are now, I was waiting in the shadows of your mind. Even when you were just a child, barely a newborn, I was there. I have always been there, whispering in your ear to follow your instincts, to trust and rely on your senses. Oh you did listen to me Beast Boy, you learned well, you became strong and dangerous. But you still do not grasp the extent of your true power…"

The green teen looked at his double, swallowing with difficulty as he tried not to press his throat against the sharp claws. The Beast continued.

"I am you. I am a part of you, a dark part that you have always pushed back, the ferocious bestiality inside your heart. The Beast, that werewolf monster, was a part of you all along. I only managed to bring it to the outside faster with the help of that strange fluid…"

"But- Adonis… How?" Tried to ask Beast Boy, not managing to form the sentence in his mouth.

"Ha!" Exclaimed the Beast. "You don't listen kid, I told you, I am in each and everyone of you. Every human has a monster sleeping inside of him, but most manage to go through their whole life without waking it…Adonis was just able to wake the primal side inside him..."

It stood back up, leaving some room to breathe to the young changeling.

"You are different, and you know it… You have a dangerous monster inside you and you try to keep it at bay. You can't. You have to let it out…"

"No!" Exclaimed Beast Boy, shooting back up to his feet, anger darkening his features. "I won't! I know what I did, what you did when I lost control last time, I can't let it happen again. especially not now!"

"Yes you do!" Roared back his doppelganger. "You won't succeed without letting me out!"

"Yes I will! I have to!"

"You still don't understand…" Sighed the Beast. "You-"

But Beast Boy cut it off before it could continue, punching his double in the face and sending it flying through the air out of the light.

"Yes I do! I understand perfectly what you want! That's why I tried to keep you at bay all these years, rage cannot be controlled, I know this better than anyone else!" He yelled as he walked towards the Beast, leaving the spot of light and letting himself be engulfed by the dark, sensing it as it slowly got back up. "You almost destroyed my friend and myself when you got out!"

Then, quicker than he could react, the Beast flew straight at him again, pinning him to the floor.

"No!" It roared. "YOU almost destroyed yourself and your friends! I AM YOU BEAST BOY!"

Beast Boy recoiled in fear once again, seeing his own reflected traits deformed by rage scared him out of his mind.

"No…no… no…" He repeated as he backed into the light, away from his double.

"Yes!" The Beast followed him, step by step, slowly catching up to him and entering the light again. "You still don't understand kid, I am not an enemy taking control of your body, I am you! And you need to let me out to win this fight and save her!"

This word seemed to shake Beast Boy out of his confusion and he focused his eyes back on the other version of himself.

"No… I-" He began but he stopped as the Beast morphed back to its werewolf form.

"Then, if you won't, I will!" It roared before jumping at him.

Beast Boy quickly transformed into a hummingbird, evading its large opponent and taking some altitude. But the Beast left him no time to breath as it morphed into a hawk and flew straight at him, catching him as he was trying to get away. The green teen became an elephant to force the hawk to let go and then a great ape and caught it before sending it to the ground. His opponent became a jaguar and landed on the floor softly before pouncing at him once more, becoming a huge tiger and biting him in the arm.

Beats Boy morphed into a sasquatch and grabbed the tiger by the leg, throwing him away and before he touched the ground he was a tyrannosaurus rex and was running with all his might at the Beast. The tiger touched down twenty meters away from the green Titan and glared at the huge dinosaur coming its way before morphing again. This time its body covered in scales, it became twice as large as the tyrannosaurus and grew wings, its neck becoming longer and its paws growing huge claws. Beast Boy hesitated a second before attacking the now fully formed dragon before roaring ferociously and forging ahead. Unfortunately during that moment of hesitation the dragon had prepared itself and swatted the king of the dinosaurs with a simple flick of its tail. Beast Boy dropped on the ground, almost losing consciousness and morphing back to his normal form. He looked at the dragon as it lowered its head level with him and opened its mouth wide. The green Titan's eyes grew large in fear as he realized what was about to happen.

"No!" He yelled at the top of his lungs, covering his eyes in a desperate attempt to protect himself from the blazing inferno. But it was too late and fire raged from the giant beast's mouth.

Once the flames vanished and Beast Boy opened his eyes again he saw the mirror version of himself once again, standing before him and offering him a hand.

"How…?" He simply articulated.

"You didn't want to listen kid…" Said the other in his voice, which was barely deeper than his but enough to give away the Beast. "I had to show you…I had to make you understand what your power really means…" As a definite lack of understanding was displayed on the Titan's face the Beast continued. "You can be anything Beast Boy… Your power is much greater than you think, than anybody thinks… But to access your full potential you need me, you can't push me away. Rage fogs the mind and make you do mistakes. But I am not that kid, the rage that took over you when you became the Beast is yours and yours only. That fluid only made it stronger for a while. I represent so much more than that…"

As Beast Boy took his doppelganger's hand and stood back up he listened intently, curious about what it had to say for once. The Beast touched his forehead as it continued to speak, making memories flash through his eyes as it talked. Beast Boy remembered a recurring dream he had when he was younger, long before he had been altered, about a voice talking to him in his sleep. He saw the first time he had morphed, remembering he had seen himself do that in a dream. He remembered the time he had trained at the Doom Patrol, when he was forced to go beyond his limits and he had only managed it by improvising on the spot. He saw the first time he transformed into the Beast, thinking he had attacked Raven when he in fact had saved her. Every time she needed him, he transformed and somehow managed to save her.

"I am not only the rage that fuels your body, Garfield. I am much more, I am all, the gut feeling that tugs at your mind when something seems wrong, the feeling of imminent danger and of self preservation. I am what pushes you to protect her against all odds."

The voice paused, taking its hand off the Titan's forehead the Beast looked the green teenager in the eyes.

"I think you understand now, what I have been trying to tell you all along…"

"Yes…" Whispered Beast Boy. "I… I was wrong…" He said, taken aback by the realization that had imposed itself to him.

"You understand your powers now… You know what to do…" Said the voice as the doppelganger walked back into the shadows and melted away into the darkness, not waiting for the teenager to reply.

Beast Boy looked at the spot where his reflection had been standing a moment earlier, watching the last bit of the creature's arm disappear, for what seemed to be hours. When finally he looked away, he knew what he had to do as if it had always been clear as day. He sat down in the light and closed his eyes. Raven had once tried to teach him how to meditate to help him control the Beast but he had never succeeded during her lessons as he kept getting distracted by his thoughts. He just couldn't get his mind off the dark girl as she was so close to him, but that of course he would never have told her. And seeing as he hadn't made any progress, nor shown any motivation, she had abandoned the idea of trying to teach him, only telling him to keep trying and that he would succeed one day. Unbeknownst to her, Beast Boy had indeed continued to try and once she had not been around to distract him with her alluring perfume or the light sound of her breathing, or her simple presence that drowned everything else around, he had found it a lot easier. It had taken him a few weeks but with some effort he had managed to become master of himself and had learned to control his emotions better, he had found that meditation had a lot of virtues. He had never told that to the dark girl either, preferring to keep it to himself as a treasured moment, and preferring not to say he found it terribly easy when he focused and when the object of his focus was her. He knew that if he tried to show her he wouldn't succeed anyways.

He sat there and took in a deep breath, calming his racing heart and summoning an image from the dark-haired girl meditating at night on the roof of the tower, a souvenir he kept well hidden from the others. As the calm face with ashen skin took the place of every other thought in his head he felt calm spread through his body and directed his thoughts to the deepest part of his mind, where he kept the Beast at bay. He finally understood why he had to let it free because he understood what it was exactly. He had thought for a long time that it was an equivalent from the vengeful emotion Rage in Raven's head but now he knew better. What he had been afraid of for so long wasn't anger or a monster, it was himself. He thought that if he relied on what made him what he was now he would lose control, but he had been wrong all along. Or at least he hoped so…

As he felt something pop open in his mind, his body surged with power and when he opened his eyes they were almost glowing with power. He first felt the pain. Adonis had grabbed him by the throat and was punching and chocking him at the same time. He also noticed that he had reverted in his normal form. Then he felt the fear. Fear of pain, fear of dying and fear of being left alone once more. But the image of a ghost of a smile on purple lips shook him out of it, and that was when he felt it. Assurance. He knew what he had to do, he knew what was going to happen and he knew that there was no reason to be paralyzed by fear. He knew why he was doing all that and it gave him renewed courage. He coughed, blood dripped from his mouth, but he looked straight at the villain in the powered suit. He let his anger spark the fire inside him and focused on all his senses.

"Good…" Echoed a deep voice somewhere in his head that he registered without even paying attention.

All this time he had run away from who he really was, all this time he had tried to shut what his body yelled to him, what his mind said was logical and tried to learn to fight with his a cool head like Robin. But despite all his good will he had never been able to do it. Now he knew why. He was not cool headed, he was a wild beast, a hunter, a hot blooded killer. He was supposed to let his supersenses become his sharpest blade, to let his primal instincts loose when he fought, not try to contain them. And he had to accept that to finally unlock his true potential. The green teenager stopped thinking about what he should do and let his body react for him. He kicked the villain in the face with both legs, forcing him to let go. He landed on the ground on all four and let the surge of power take over, his whole body started to convulse as soon as he did.

"I am the primal instincts in every men, the thing that pushes them to fight for their lives, to give everything to protect themselves and what they love no matter the odds. I am the primal drive that once woken up will not stop as long as it can fight. I am the Beast that sleeps in every heart and that gives the will to fight for life to every living creature, I am your survival instincts, I am life!" Roared the voice inside his head as his body shook violently as it morphed.

As Starfire arrived near the gates she couldn't believe her eyes. Two dozen robots were lying on the ground in pieces, almost as much clones of Billy numerous were sprawled all over and Kyd Wykkyd was lying unconscious under two of them. What surprised her more was the fact that both wooden doors guarding the entry of the fortress had been taken down and completely destroyed. Adonis was lying on the ground behind them, blood dripping from his mouth and bruises all over his face. His power suit was in pieces besides him. Dr. Light was lying near the wall on the right as if he had been thrown against it with such violence it had created a dent in his shape in the stone. Next to where he had landed was a huge claw mark that had cut deep in the stone. But what surprised the alien princess the most was the strange creature standing in front of Adonis and his destroyed power suite. It was breathing loudly and seemed to have just finished taking them down. It looked like the Beast, with green fur, but a bit smaller, its arms a slimmer but still buffed with muscles. It had wolfish features from the waist down but the upper body looked more human-like. A long furry tail was slowly moving in waves behind it and two large scaly wings were protruding from its back. Starfire took a hesitant step towards it, unsure of its intentions. The creature turned around and Starfire was taken aback, if that wasn't the case before, and took a step back in shock. It was Beast Boy. The Tamarean princess opened her eyes and mouth in shock as a huge smile spread on his face.

"Hey Star! Good to see you are well!" He exclaimed in a voice slightly deeper than usual and radiating confidence.

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