A starless sky surrounding the looming towers of an unfamiliar city were the first things Raven took in as she cautiously opened her eyes. She couldn’t recall how she got there. All she remembered was quiet and darkness and then suddenly...she was in this strange place.
Which was also very quiet and very dark. But eerily so. The streets were empty and there was a slow wind that sent shivers down her spine. As she walked forward, she noticed there wasn’t just a lack of human beings - there were no animals, either. No stray cats wandering the alleys or street rats to scare her more than she’d admit.
Raven took a hesitant left turn and was both confused and excited to see something familiar. A familiar silhouette, at the very least.
The figure turned around and she quickly flew to him, landing softly on the ground a few feet away.
“Raven? What are you doing here?”
She took a few steps closer and lowered her hood. “I’m not sure. Where is...here?”
Robin sighed and looked wistfully behind her; Raven turned around and took in the sight in front of her eyes.
The Bat Signal.
“How did I get to Gotham?” Raven turned back around and stared down at her hands. “Why are you in Gotham?”
He stared at her for a few moments and Raven was tempted to imitate herself from a few weeks earlier and just pop into his head and find out what was going on. “I...I usually come here when I need to think.”
“...think about what?”
Robin looked away from her for a second before reaching over and grabbing her hands with his own. “...you.”
Raven blushed fiercely and used her telekinesis to raise her hood back over her head, not wanting to break contact with his hands or let him see how embarrassed she felt. “I...why?”
He squeezed her hands gently. “I needed to sort through some feelings.”
She couldn’t stop staring at their entwined hands and refused to look up at his face. “Did you?”
“No.” Robin let go of one of her hands and tugged her hood back down while his other hand pulled her closer to him. “But you being here clears everything up.”
This time she had to look at his face, and even through the mask she could feel his sincerity and she had absolutely no idea what was going on. Her heart was pounding and this whole scenario felt like a dream. But not like a dream she’d ever had before.
His hand moved from her hood to rest against her cheek and he smiled. “Of course it was you.”
Raven leaned into his hand on reflex before suddenly pulling away from him as if he was burning, shrinking in on herself in a bout of guilt. “Wait, but...you and Starfire-”
“Starfire?” Robin gave her an incredulous look. “That’s...that’s not the same. It’s not like that.”
She pushed some of her hair behind one ear and felt like she was doing something very wrong. “What do you mean?”
“I mean...I’m not in love with her,” Robin said quietly as he closed the space between them again - though this time he kept his hands to himself. “I’m in love with-”
Raven woke up so fast that she shot forward into an upright position, squeezing her blanket against herself. What had just happened? What kind of dream was that?
It was unlike any she’d had before. Even when she did have romantic thoughts about Robin, they weren’t like that . Definitely not like that. That was more intimate than anything she’d ever dreamt before.
She breathed out a heavy sigh and laid her blanket back down, considering going back to sleep. But she wondered if she would end up in Gotham again. In Gotham with that very touchy version of Robin that couldn’t be further from the man she actually knew...right?
After seeing that it was only two in the morning, Raven decided to get up after all. She could go back to bed after making herself some tea without any interruption.
At least, normally there’d be no interruption.
Raven turned on the low lights as soon as she reached the kitchen, and was greeted by an unexpected sight: Robin gulping down an entire bottle of water in one go.
“ Robin? ”
The Boy Wonder must’ve had his eyes closed, because as soon as she spoke, he practically jumped and snorted water out his mouth and nose in surprise. He covered the lower half of his face with one ungloved hand and looked over at her.
She tried to shake off her dream from earlier and floated towards the pantry. “Why are you up so early? Or haven’t you slept?”
Robin wasn’t looking at her, instead choosing to stare at the crumpled water bottle in his hand. “...weird dream.”
Raven froze. “...o-oh, is that so?”
“I was confused and lost and back in Gotham,” he started to recall, squeezing the water bottle a little tighter with each word.
She felt her heart start to pound again. There was no way. She didn’t...she couldn’t have. Or could she have? After she’d entered his head to help fight off the ghost of their enemy, she’d inadvertently explored several corners of his mind. There was bound to be some sort of lasting effect. But... this?
“And then, well…” Robin looked, to Raven’s surprise, a bit sheepish as he ran one of his hands through his hair. “...then you showed up. Out of nowhere.”
Raven’s cheeks tinged pink. It could still just be a coincidence.
Robin tossed the destroyed bottle into the recycling bin and walked closer to his teammate. “It felt good to see a friendly face. Even if you were just as confused as me.”
“Did we...um, talk about anything?” She tried to focus on her task at hand - filling up the tea kettle with water - but he was making it difficult.
After a moment of silence, Raven turned around to see him stroking the lower half of his face in thought. In this light, she couldn’t tell if he was blushing or not, but if he remembered their conversation, she’d be shocked if he wasn’t.
“We did,” Robin finally answered.
Her heart sped up.
“...but I don’t remember what we talked about.”
And it stopped.
Robin chuckled. “All I remember is feeling really, really calm and happy. Like I’d just figured out the answer to one of the Riddler’s toughest tricks.”
Raven nodded. “...I’m glad I could help. Even if it was just a dream.”
“Yeah.” He walked closer to her and smiled. “Maybe next time I’ll appear to help in one of your bad dreams.”
“...that’d be nice,” Raven said quietly, not really sure why he was standing so close to her. Ridiculously close. Like....almost like he was going to kiss her. She hoped he couldn’t see how red her face was.
He waited a moment before grabbing on to her shoulder so he could comfortably lean forward and press his lips against her temple oh-so-gently.
It was the briefest of kisses. If she hadn’t been so aware of everything that was happening at that moment, she would’ve sworn it never occurred at all. But it did.
Robin backed away and shoved his hands into the pockets of his sweatpants. “I’m gonna head back to bed. See you in the morning!”
She kept staring at the door where she’d watched him walk away, maybe for only a few seconds or maybe it was a few minutes, but then the kettle started to boil and she quickly turned off the burner before the noise could wake anyone up.
Raven poured her water over the tea bag and stared into the mug, unable to stop thinking about his lips against her skin. What did a kiss on the head mean? Did it mean he did remember? Did it mean he... loved her? That’s what he was going to say in his dream, wasn’t it?
She rubbed her hands against the warm ceramic and sighed. She knew there’d be some consequences to entering Robin’s head, but she didn’t anticipate anything like this. It was time for some very intense magical studying.