September 11th, 2004
(Opening shot: the exterior of Titans Tower during the day. Zoom in slowly, then cut to Beast Boy walking cheerfully down the hall. He stops short when Starfire floats past, very near the camera. Pull back; he stands near the open door of her room, and she is carrying two large boxes away, one on each shoulder. A question mark pops up by his head and floats away.)
Beast Boy: Huh?
(The three remaining Titans instantly appear next to him. Utterly oblivious to their presence, Starfire slips back into her room and hauls out a huge pile of spare outfits. On top of the lot is the giant moth larva that got loose in the kitchen during "X." She returns, passing o.c. Pan back and forth across the group during the next lines.)
Cyborg: Uh, Starfire?
Starfire: (now o.c.) Hmm?
Beast Boy: Going somewhere?
Starfire: (passing them) I am leaving for Tamaran.
Raven: And you're taking all your stuff because...?
(She stops packing and gives the foursome a tender, wistful smile.)
Starfire: I am not ever coming back. (All eyes pop.)
Robin, Beast Boy, Cyborg and Raven: WHAT?!
Robin: Starfire, what's wrong?
Starfire: Nothing is wrong. I am... (Worried pause, then a big smile.) ...getting married.
Robin, Beast Boy, Cyborg and Raven: WHAT?!
(The shock of this announcement sends Robin sliding to the floor. Snap to black.)
(Opening shot: an area of outer space. Tilt down to the T-Sub in flight, as it traveled during the gang's search for Starfire in "Transformation." By the end of the episode, we will find that it has been reclassified as the T-Ship.)
Robin: (from inside) You're getting married? (Long shot: panels appear, showing his face and Starfire's.)
Starfire: Indeed. (as hearts drift from her) And I cannot wait to see Tamaran. (eyes tear up a bit) I have been having a bit of the sick-home feeling lately and am eager to introduce my home planet to you, my friends.
(As she continues, a new shot slides into view showing a plate of glorg; the gelatinous, worm-embedded dish Terra wolfed down so eagerly when the Titans first met her.)
Starfire: First, you must ingest the fresh-squeezed glorg.
(Another picture slides in: large, quivering, eggplant-like globules.)
Starfire: (voice over) Or perhaps sputflinks.
(New shot slides in: two creatures side by side. One is a fat dinosaur-like thing yellow with red spots, whose head is that of an old motorcycle daredevil. The other is brown, furry, with a squarish head whose sole feature is a large mouth. The chest has two pairs of eyes, small above large, and there are two very short arms. Between the pair is a tiny caricature of Starfire, marked "Me," to indicate the scale of these beasts; an arrow points to this, indicating the scale factor at work.)
Starfire: (voice over) And wait until you see the portkins; they are as big as a flornop!
(Long shot of the T-Ship; now a panel pops up to put Beast Boy in the foreground with Starfire, while Robin has backed off.)
Beast Boy: Um, am I the only one afraid of the big portkins? (He and Starfire disappear; Robin moves up.)
Robin: You're getting married? (Back off; Raven moves up.)
Raven: Yeah, uh, anyone we know?
(Cut to Starfire's cockpit. She taps her fingertips together in a slightly nervous way.)
Starfire: Oh, I have never met him. My betrothed has been chosen for me by the Grand Ruler of Tamaran.
(A shadow falls across her on the end of this. Cut to just behind her; the source is Robin, who has left his seat and made his way over here to plaster himself against the canopy.)
Robin: You're getting married?! (sight gag: his head grows) And to someone you've never met?!
(The gag ends, whereupon he realizes that there is no air in deep space and turns bright blue. Gasping and choking, he half-swims back to his seat.)
Starfire: Of course, Robin. It is the way of my people.
Robin: But, Starfire--
(An explosion nearby shakes the vessel and makes him hold that thought. A squadron of beetle-shaped fighters buzzes past, strafing the area with laser fire.)
Cyborg: I don't suppose this is some kinda crazy Tamaranean welcoming committee. (Starfire shakes her head; Raven sees many blips on the radar.)
Raven: Whoever they are, they've got us outnumbered ten to one.
(More shots flash by. Cut to a five-way split screen: Robin at the center, one Titan near each edge.)
Robin: Not for long. Titans! Separate!
(White light shines between the sections as they slide apart. Overhead view of the T-Ship, which splits into five pieces, each of which carries one member of the crew. In turn, cut to a close-up of each Titan and pull back as the view dissolves to the exterior of his/her section, which reconfigures itself for solo flight. Robin's craft is the last to convert, after which the camera pulls back to frame the disassembled ship. A flare of engines, and the Titans scatter in all directions.)
(As Robin eyes his radar intently, a fusillade of shots comes his way; he does some neat trick flying but is unable to shake a pair of assailants. As he pulls a lever, the view dissolves to a long shot of him zooming straight up between the two ships, which hover tail to tail. Once he has moved in close enough not to miss, he opens fire, blowing one apart. Its partner and another fighter chase him into an asteroid field, shooting all the while. Cyborg zooms through another area of the danger zone. Close-up of him.)
Cyborg: You think you've got me?
(The asteroids: he swerves among them, staying just ahead of his pursuers.)
Cyborg: (from inside) Think again!
(A rock drifts past, flattening one alien vessel. Elsewhere, Starfire has two on her tail; she takes a hit or two.)
Starfire: I begin to suspect that separation was not such a wise idea. (Robin is hit.)
Robin: Starfire's right. Titans! Regroup!
(Long shot of the five; they fly back toward each other, then upward in close formation as a couple of enemy ships give chase. The turn is too sharp for the bogeys to follow, and they end up crashing into one another in a gigantic fireball. The T-Ship pieces itself together.)
Robin: Who were they?
Beast Boy: And where are we?
Starfire: The planet Tamaran.
(Long shot of this world; the pink-splotched orb seen in "Transformation.")
Starfire: (from o.c.) My home.
(Dissolve a patch of violet-clouded sky, through which the T-Ship descends.)
Starfire: (from inside, gasping) Is it not the most beautiful place your eyes have ever observed?
(On the end of this, cut to her, gazing eagerly out from her cockpit in the hovering ship. Pull back to a long shot of the landscape-barren, studded with immense, twisted rock formations, past which the Titans cruise.)
Raven: (from inside) Uh...sure?
(Cut to the base of one of these outcroppings and tilt up as the T-Ship ascends next to it. Structures are built into the contorted rock faces; at the pinnacle sits a very tall castle, its rear portion cantilevered over the precipice back there. Dissolve to a parapet, where the vessel has landed and is still smoking from the damage it sustained, as the Titans proceed along its length toward the castle. They stop, Starfire putting her hands together excitedly, and the sound of a gate opening is heard o.c. Cut to it; the light streaming from within outlines four normal-sized figures, armed with spears, castle guards, and a very broad fifth one who stands at least three times their height.)
(Close-up of the large silhouette, on which the gleam of only one eye can be seen, the left. It stumps forward, filling the screen, and the camera cuts to a patch of walkway at its feet and tilts up as the shadow extends over the Titans. Starfire warms up both hands, ready to toss a shot or two just in case, and rises to face the individual. Now we can see all the details; male, full-grown adult, long auburn hair and beard, dressed in the same color scheme as the prodigal daughter, wrist guards and studded armband, right eye scarred and useless. This is Galfore. He stops just short and glares at her with his good eye.)
Galfore: Nooba gulshtik Koriand'r sol! (He pounds a fist against his chest.)
Starfire: Hesbad rutha Galfore kank!
[Note: In the comics, Koriand'r was Starfire's given name.]
(Close-up of the giant; he snarls and pulls back from her, raising both meaty arms and bringing them down. She screams.)
(He whips out a handful of discs, Cyborg primes his sonic cannon, and Raven gets her powers warmed up Before anyone can move, though, a few eyes go wide in surprise, and the scream gives way to laughter. Galfore has seized Starfire and is chuckling as he tickles her like mad. Sight gag: she appears in "Super Deformed" style.)
Cyborg: (to Robin) Um, unless they tickle people to death here, I think you can chill.
(Robin puts his weapons away, and the gag ends as both Tamaraneans stand up.)
Starfire: Friends, I wish you to meet my k'norfka, Galfore. (Sweat drops on the other four heads.) He raised me from the time I was very small.
Beast Boy: (laughing) You mean this dude's your nanny?
(Robin, Cyborg, and Raven clear out, leaving Beast Boy in the shadow of one very angry big man.)
Galfore: You find that amusing, little one?!
(The laughter dies in an instant and is replaced by a scared, slack-jawed shudder; the other three slide back up.)
Robin: Nice to meet you.
Galfore: (thumping his chest) X'Hal! (Pull back; he eyes their damaged ship.) I see you have met our new enemy. (The starboard engine falls off.)
Robin: Then you know who attacked us?
(Galfore moves to the edge of the balcony and gestures toward the plain far below. Several beetle-shaped fighters are parked here.)
Galfore: The great Drenthax army.
(Pan away from him; many more craft stand rank on rank.)
Galfore: (from o.c.) They threaten to overthrow our planet, our way of life. (Back to him; he turns fiercely from Starfire.) And if I were Grand Ruler, I would...well, I am not. (He turns back to her.) Let us just say that much has changed since you departed.
(She floats over and puts her hands on his shoulders.)
Starfire: I have missed you, Galfore.
Galfore: And I have missed you... (kneels and bows his head) ...Princess Starfire.
(The castle guards follow his lead, putting a mildly surprised look on her face and completely shocked expressions on those of her teammates. "!!?!?" appears above their heads.)
Robin, Beast Boy, Cyborg and Raven: PRINCESS?!? (Close-up of her.)
Starfire: (sheepishly) Oh, yes, I am...second in line for the throne. Perhaps I forgot to mention?
(She laughs a bit, Pull back slightly, then to a considerable distance, where the other Titans have backed up fast enough to send up fumes of burning rubber from their boot soles. Fresh sweat drops have appeared on all four heads, and the wake of their movement nearly sweeps Galfore and the guards off their feet.)
Cyborg: (to Robin) Did you know about this?
Robin: Just go.
(One by one, they head for the castle gate. Dissolve to an overhead view of the entrance hall, through which the entire group is moving. Two large doglike beats stand at each side, collared and chained to the walls. Close-up of one-ridged gray skin, round red eyes, wide mouth filled with huge lower teeth that are almost tusks.)
Beast Boy: Alien animals! Cool!
(It rears up with a vicious roar, prompting him to scream in terror and bail. Raven's hand on the back of his outfit is the only thing that stops him from running out of the place. When she yanks him back, he has pulled his head all the way down into his collar.)
Raven: (thumps his back; his head pops up) You're the alien here.
Robin: (crossing the floor) Look, Starfire, about this wedding--
(On the end of this, cut to a close-up of his hand as he touches her shoulder. Instantly, Galfore leaps with an enraged yell; Robin flings himself backward out of reach, and just as quickly the guards thrust the points of their weapons into his face.)
Galfore: It is forbidden for out-worlders to touch the Princess!
Starfire: Um...please do not harm my friend.
(Robin sweats buckets for a tense moment before the spears are withdrawn. Starfire and Galfore make for the exit, the guards following, and the other Titans are left to chew this over. Beast Boy gets up, still a bit woozy from his run-in with good old Fido. Robin is noticeably dejected at this particular edict.)
Beast Boy: I'm not touching her.
(The procession continues out. Dissolve to a banquet hall, the camera pointing along a table toward the far end at which Starfire sits. Robin and Raven are among several Tamaraneans, including Galfore; an enormous wine goblet, at least three feet tall and two across, is at each place. Robin sits on one side of the guest of honor, Galfore on the other; the latter stands, lifting his cup for a toast.)
Galfore: To our beautiful Princess and her new husband! (Cut to her and Robin on the end of this; she stands and raises.)
Starfire: And to my good friends.
(Pan along the table, away from her. The natives lift their cups with ease, but none of the other Titans can even budge theirs, even Raven's telekinesis is no good. Cyborg and Beast Boy are at the far end.)
Starfire: (from o.c.) I am jubilant you all could be here to celebrate my wedding.
(Back to her end. She clinks, or rather thumps, her glass with Robin's, and the other guests do likewise.)
Robin: We're...really going to miss you.
(She has no immediate answer. A long, uncomfortable silence follows, only to be broken when the carcass of some weird alien creature is dumped in front of him on a plate. He cries out in surprise at the sight of it.)
Starfire: Please, eat.
(Pull back. The entire table is now loaded with bowls of bizarre food; a servant carries away a huge stack of dishes. We see two close-ups of the freaky fare, then an extreme close-up of one bowl, tilting up to point at Beast Boy and Cyborg. They stare, horrified, as the glowing-eyed silhouettes of a couple of Tamaraneans grin at the smorgasbord. Two new table-level shots, each tilting up to frame more greedy guest outlines, then pull back. Galfore whips out an enormous axe and pulverizes the bonanza to mush with a single blow, then heaves out of his char to plow into it all. Sight gag: long shot of the table against a red background, with a total free-for-all taking place atop it. One after another, the four guest Titans are ejected from the all-you-can-eat fracas as the others gorge themselves.)
(The gag ends; normal view-a dumbstruck SD Robin watches Starfire, now hunched over on the table and stuffing her face.)
Robin: I'm guessing you picked up your table manners on Earth?
Starfire: (with great force; he is blown back) Hurry or you will not get any!
[Animiation goof: Robin is briefly seen without his gloves in these shots.]
(He covers his eyes as bits of food come flying at him. Extreme close-up of the eggplant-like sputflinks she referred to; the pile recedes rapidly to expose Beast Boy.)
Beast Boy: Hel-lo? Vegetarian in the house! (holds one up to Cyborg) Does this look like a veggie to you?
(The big fellow shrugs with a noncommittal grunt and proceeds to chomp the thing right out of his green buddy's hand.)
Beast Boy: I'm not hungry.
(Wipe to a yellow field, against which several sets of gorka pipes, the bagpipe-like instrument Starfire tried to play in "Only Human", are lifted into view to sound a deafening fanfare. Robin and company scream and cover their ears, Raven also shielding herself in a futile attempt to block the noise. Pan to Starfire and Galfore; she holds a giant bone that has been picked clean, while he has gathered an armload of leftovers. The SD Robin gag has ended.)
Starfire: Uh...it is music.
(All the other guests leave their seats and kneel reverently. Cut to an overhead view of the hall; the great doors at one end slide slowly open, revealing a lone figure beyond them. Closer view: now flanked by guards, this individual begins a stately procession, moving far enough in to show the outlines of a long cape and a piece of headgear with two vertical hornlike projections. Now the camera shifts to just behind the advancing individual, facing down at the genuflecting Titans, Galfore, and a few other guests. Finally, the gargantuan Tamaranean lifts his head.)
Galfore: All hail the Grand Ruler of Tamaran!
(Head-on view of the legs, which are clad in a very familiar pair of long black boots and disappear into a skirt of the same color.)
Galfore: (from o.c.) The Empress!
(Tilt up to frame one very smug face; it belongs to none other than Blackfire, Starfire's criminally bent big sister who paid a visit to Earth two seasons ago. The cape is halfway thrown back off one shoulder, and the headgear is a crown that frames her face. Underneath all of this, she still wears the same black outfit and metallic under-armor she used in "Sisters." She casually pushes the cape the rest of the way back.)
Starfire: (from o.c., gasping) Blackfire?
Blackfire: Surprised to see me, little sister?
Starfire: (stands and her eyes flare) I am...surprised to see you out of prison!
Blackfire: (eyes flaring) Oh, that. Well, after you had me thrown in jail, I got bored. So I broke out and took over Tamaran for kicks.
(Close-up of Galfore on the end of this, then back to her. The eyes cool down.)
Blackfire: But enough about me. (moves aside a bit) I'm sure you're eager to see who you'll be spending the rest of your life with.
(The movement exposes a male standing at a distance behind her, his back to the camera. In close-up, he turns to face us: young, bare-chested, very well built, a mane of hair blowing in the wind, towel draped over one arm. Starfire is positively thunderstruck at the sight of him; hearts drift up from her as a truly indignant Robin tries to protest and cannot find any words. Instead, a huge vein throbs somewhere in his hair and his jaw steadily works its way to the floor, even dropping off the bottom of the screen and coming back in the top to clock him in the head.)
(Back to the strapping fellow, who exits stage right to make way for something that drops in from above. It is very large, contained in a metal bowl that floats just above the floor, and made entirely of writhing green appendages that look something like slimy elephant trunks. It roars or sneezes or belches, it is impossible to say which, and expels huge globs of slime that splatter against the camera lens. In an instant, the man has returned and wiped away all the mess; behind the towel's edge, the view changes. Now this horrid creature is in the background, laying an arm/tentacle on Starfire, whose jaw drops as a little tear hangs from each eye; sight gag; her hands are gone. Her sister stands in the fore, loving every second of this. A white ground is behind them.)
Blackfire: Starfire, meet your groom... (disgustedly) ...Glgrdsklechhh!
(The end of this name is punctuated by a guttural hiss. Beaming again, she backs o.c. and the camera zooms in on the not-so-happy couple, weaving blearily back and forth as it does so. Dissolve to a shot of the five comically distorted Titans. Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven goggle at the fact that this revolting thing is Starfire's husband-to-be. Nothing of Robin can be seen except his glowering face; the rest of him is consumed by a pillar of flame. The announcement literally has him burning up.)
Raven: Um...he's cute.
(Fade to black.)
(Opening shot: the exterior of the castle. Zoom in slowly, then dissolve to the top of the doorway through which Blackfire entered. Tilt down to frame her, Glgrdsklechhh, and her guards facing the banquet guests. The four human, or mostly human, Titans continue to goggle at the news; pan from them to Starfire.)
Starfire: My...groom? But he is-- I cannot--
Blackfire: You can, and you will. You see, sister dear, this darling creature is the Exalted Schlurch of the Swamp Moons of Drenthax IV. And since his invasion army is parked outside our castle, I arranged your marriage to save our beloved Tamaran from annihilation. If your groom can't kiss his bride, (Cut to Starfire and Galfore; she continues o.c.) we can all kiss Tamaran goodbye.
(She looks uneasily at her childhood caregiver, then drops her head in resignation. The repulsive green Romeo floats quickly over to her.)
Starfire: (weakly) I am sure we will be... (touches Glgrdsklechhh gingerly) ...very happy together.
(Withdrawing her hand, Starfire finds it covered with green slime , but she cannot quite pull it free. She is suddenly yanked back to the gelatinous body. A belch goes off in her face, shaking her loose and leaving her hair badly disheveled for a moment.)
Blackfire: He says he can't wait to take you to his swamp planet, far, far away. (raises her voice) We celebrate my sister's wedding at moonset, tonight!
(Wild cheering from the locals. Cut to a slow pan, from the soon-to-be-married couple to the four totally bewildered Titans amid the jubilant crowd.)
Robin: Tonight? Starfire, are you sure?
Starfire: (not turning to Robin) Yes.
Blackfire: Take the Princess to her quarters so she may prepare.
(Cut to Robin and company; said Princess is escorted out by a couple of guards.)
Blackfire: (from o.c.) And keep an eye on her friends.
(Back to her. She tosses a self-satisfied glance their way before exiting with the rest of the armed personnel. Cut to a close-up of Robin and zoom in as he lowers his eyebrows: the machinery under that spiky hair is working very fast indeed. Dissolve to the exterior of the castle and zoom in on one of the lower portions.)
Beast Boy: (from inside) HEEELLLPPP!!
(Inside, something large and oyster-like is trying to chew on him. Cyborg pries up the top half, allowing him to slide free.)
Beast Boy: I can't tell what's a bed, what's a chair, and what's alive! (stretches his face down a bit) How am I supposed to take my beauty nap?
(Pull back. This room is fairly dark, with assorted exotic furniture in evidence. Raven is at a distance behind the two boys; Robin paces in front of them.)
Robin: How can you even think about sleep? We can't let Starfire go through with this!
Cyborg: Come on, man. You sure you're not just, you know...jealous? (Beast Boy nods.)
Robin: Of that ugly, smelly whatever-it-is? You saw her face, Cyborg. She doesn't even like him!
Raven: (crosses to them) True. But maybe she doesn't need to. Things are different here. Who are we to question her culture?
Robin: Blackfire arranged the whole thing. How do we even know if any of this is real? Cyborg and Beast Boy, check out the Drenthax fleet. Raven, see what you can learn about this...thing she's marrying.
Cyborg: And you?
Robin: I need to see Starfire.
(He walks off. Dissolve to a couple of Drenthax ships on the plain outside the castle and pan across the ranks. The camera passes into a shadowy niche beneath the legs of one of them; a circular panel is cut out and falls away, exposing the mountainous horizon, and Beast Boy and Cyborg peer in. The bionic teen has just cut his way through the hull with his onboard acetylene torch. Cut to inside; he has his shoulder flashlight out to point the way for both of them. Beast Boy gets his foot caught in a tangle of electrical cable on the floor and pitches forward with a yell.)
Cyborg: (softly) What are you trying to do, wake up the whole...
(He trails off, surprised, upon realizing that the place is still dead silent; no one coming to investigate, no sound of crewmen at their duty, nothing.)
Cyborg: Where's the crew? (Beast Boy gets up.)
Beast Boy: Out to lunch?
(Cut to their perspective. The flash homes in on a helm control panel and viewscreen, both of which stand deserted. Back to them, moving cautiously ahead.)
Beast Boy and Cyborg: (in unison) Huh?
(Pan ahead slightly to the seat in front of the panel, on which a piece of machinery has been placed and wired up to the ship's systems. Cyborg leans forward; cut to his perspective of the chair as he swivels it for a good look.)
Cyborg: Remote control. (It disconnects; back to the pair.) They've got a whole fleet of ships--
Beast Boy: --But no army.
(Out goes the light; the distinct whisper of steel is heard, and as the boys turn toward it, pull back to frame several castle guards holding them at spear-point.)
Cyborg: And Blackfire doesn't want anyone to know.
(The lead man advances, slowly and menacingly. Dissolve to a room in the castle, this one done out in various shades of green, and zoom in on the far wall. Raven rises from the floor and starts to look around. The first thing she picks up, which might be a sort of hot-water bottle, is covered with slime; these are Glgrdsklechhh's quarters.)
(She drops the object. Close-up of a small box on a dresser. She reaches into view to open the lid; cut to an extreme close-up of her eyes as it is heard opening. Light pours up over her face and fully illuminates her hooded eyes, which go very wide, and the camera shifts to behind her. Whatever is inside that container, we cannot see it clearly due to the brilliance, and she hastily shuts the lid at the sound of Blackfire's voice. On the start of the next line, cut to the doorway; she and the gooey Drenthax ruler enter, side by side.)
Blackfire: (from outside) Yes, my plan was brilliant, wasn't it, Glgrdsklechhh?
(He grunts a bit in reply. After they have passed, tilt up to the ceiling, where Raven pokes her head in: she is hiding on the floor above. Zoom in on her, then cut to her perspective of the pair. He picks up the box.)
Blackfire: I give you my pesky little sister... (Close-up.) ...and you give me...
(He opens the lid. Close-up of the box; now the shining thing can be fully seen, a large, diamond-shaped red gem in a gold setting.)
Blackfire: (from o.c.) ...the Jewel of Charta. (She picks it up; her hair is blown back.) With its powers enhancing my own...
(It glows red, as do her eyes, and power crackles all around her. Pull back.)
Blackfire: ...I can rule Tamaran with an iron fist! (eyes blazing) No one will dare challenge me!
(Glgrdsklechhh makes a noise of surprise, pointing upward with his mouth appendage. Cut to a long shot of Raven's head and zoom in; she has been spotted. He shoots a blob of slime, scoring a direct hit that dumps her to the floor, and both he and Blackfire move in. Close-up of her, wiping away some of the residue.)
Raven: Ew. (Their shadows cover her.)
Blackfire: (from o.c.) Well done, Glgrdsklechhh. (Cut to the pair, glaring at Raven.) You've discovered a spy.
(She raises one red-flaring hand. Extreme close-up of the cloaked Titan's unnerved face, which is again fully lit under its hood by the shine. Cut to an overhead view of a closed door, with a guard standing at attention to either side. Zoom in as it opens slightly, then cut to an extreme close-up of Starfire's face through the crack. She peers out; her quarters are on the other side, and gets a disapproving look from one guard. Realizing that she has as much chance of talking her way past them as she does of getting a Beefeater to laugh, she closes the door.)
(Cut to a patch of rock face outside. Robin makes his way up, using two birdarangs like pickaxes to give himself a handhold. As the trailing edge of his cape passes by, the view changes to a close-up of the waving hem of a white garment. Pulled back from the camera by Starfire, it is a long, sleeveless white dress with a chevron-shaped belt and a neck piece that matches the one she wears; her wedding gown. She stands before a full-length mirror and looks it up and down, then holds it in front of herself to see how she will look in it. The expression in her large green eyes says it all about just how crushed she is at having to give up her life with the Titans.)
(She looks off to one side; close-up of her communicator on a nearby countertop, then back to her as she turns away from the mirror. Outside, Robin continues his climb, and the camera tilts up to a wide balcony on which Starfire is stepping out. She leans over the railing; close-up of her deeply troubled face, then pan away a bit. Robin hoists himself up to the edge; both keep their voices throughout the next nine lines.)
Robin: Starfire! (His perspective of her.) Starfire! (She turns and gasps.)
Starfire: Robin! Thank X'Hal you...uh...that is...I trust you are enjoying your stay?
(Back to him; he has climbed all the way onto the railing, and he holds out one hand.)
Robin: Come on. We're getting out of here.
Starfire: Oh, Robin...I am sorry. I cannot. (She turns away; he swings onto the balcony.)
Robin: Starfire, you don't want to marry him.
Starfire: Marrying him will bring peace to my planet. It is good for everyone.
Robin: It's not good for you.
Starfire: Robin...if you cannot be happy for me...then perhaps you should not attend my wedding. (Close-up of him.)
(A hand reaches into view, clamps firmly over his mouth, and yanks him o.c. Close-up of Starfire, who looks his way in surprise at the sudden cutoff; pull back to show her alone on the balcony now. She dips her head dejectedly, and the camera shifts to a long overhead shot of her and pulls back slowly as she returns to her quarters. Dissolve to a long, ground-level shot of the peak on which the castle sits and tilt down through the layers of earth, the view steadily darkening until all we can see is black.)
(This resolves into the black outer surface of Robin's cape as he is dragged away by two guards. This is a wide, bare room marked by vertical shafts of light. Many creatures stand within them: force-field holding cells, and one holds Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven. Robin is thrown in to join them and snarls a bit from the spot of floor he has landed on.)
[Animation goof: The back of his cape briefly turns yellow during this sequence.]
Beast Boy: So, I guess we're gonna miss the wedding?
Robin: I couldn't talk her out of it. She has to marry him, for her people.
Raven: No, she doesn't.
Cyborg: It's all a lie. The army, the war, everything. Blackfire set her up. (Robin stands.)
Robin: Then we have to tell Starfire the truth... (Extreme close-up: his narrowing eyes.) ...before it's too late.
(Cut to a long overhead shot of Starfire's balcony and zoom in as she stands at her mirror, which is near the doorway. She has changed into the wedding gown. Close-up of the hem, reflected in the glass, and tilt up to her face; all she wears of her everyday outfit is her armband and wrist guards. Robin's interrupted visit is still weighing heavy on her mind. Pull back as Galfore steps up; she turns around to find him holding a small crown similar to Blackfire's, but which does not reach as low on the cheeks. He holds it up, then lowers it toward her face as he speaks.)
Galfore: I have never seen a more beautiful bride. (He sets it in place on her head.) Something troubles you, my little bumgorf?
Starfire: (trying to smile) Nothing troubles me.
Galfore: Do not attempt to fool an old k'norfka. I raised you.
(Close-up of her. He places a hand on her shoulder, bringing a small but genuine smile to her face. As he continues, pull back to frame both.)
Galfore: I have always expected great things from you, my Princess, and tonight is no exception. (Close-up of her.)
Starfire: Yes. (She dips her head.) I will do what is right for Tamaran.
Galfore: (from o.c., raising her chin) You must do what is right... (leans down into view) ...in your heart.
(The sound of an opening door draws all three working eyes. Blackfire stands at the threshold, a guard to either side.)
Blackfire: Ready, sister dear?
(Said sister and her faithful guardian give each other a long, searching look, after which she floats up to give him a big hug. She flies toward the door; close-up of his pensive face and zoom in toward the eyes. In terms of showing his worry and unease, the good one takes up the slack for its ruined partner. Cut to the underground holding cells, where many guards have been put on duty. An explosion from the far end shakes them off their feet; when the dust clears, the four heroes stand free of their confinement. Evidently, no one bothered to relieve them of their weapons.)
(Robin is first to move, kicking two sentries away as if they were no more than the plywood targets he has practiced on in the past, and makes a break for it. Several others get his three partners pinned down in a ring of spear points and pay no mind to Cyborg's cannon. In an instant, though, Beast Boy transforms into a copy of the large creature he taunted while entering the castle. Letterbox view, top half of the screen: against a red background, he roars at the guards, who fling their spears away and run off, screaming in abject terror. Fullscreen: he reverts to human form.)
Cyborg: How did you know you could do that?
Beast Boy: Lucky guess.
(The exterior of the castle's uppermost ramparts. Pull back slowly, then dissolve to an immense hall inside. Many sets of gorka pipes are lifted to blow a fanfare that makes the entire structure shake, and Glgrdsklechhh and Blackfire stand impatiently at the end of this area. The Jewel of Charta has been set in the young usurper's neck piece, replacing the black stone she normally wears there. Many Tamaraneans have gathered to mark the event and are standing to show respect; they look toward the opposite end as the doors open and Starfire is led in by Galfore. Close-up of her gown's hem, tilting up to her face; if she was feeling low in "Sisters," the prospect of what is about to happen has put her about a mile down from that. Finally, she raises her head and takes in the throng of spectators.)
(Cut to a close-up of Robin's face and pull back. He is somewhere else in the castle, with his fighting staff in hand, and a guard's spear is lowered into view toward him. Cut to two of these men as they approach the camera, then back to the wedding hall; Starfire and her k'norfka proceed along the aisle. Robin dodges a swing, then blocks another with his staff. Starfire is led closer to Glgrdsklechhh. Robin is knocked down and must roll away to avoid a guard's spear swing. Starfire's perspective, zooming in on the vile green beast. A guard is flung against the wall and collapses; Robin immediately leaps away from his partner's swing and hurls a handful of grenades. Starfire reaches the end of the aisle, whereupon Galfore snarls at Glgrdsklechhh and makes him recoil in fear a bit. The oozing groom floats over to Starfire's side; she looks to and fro nervously.)
Starfire: Where are my friends?
Blackfire: Guess they had better things to do. Now smile pretty for your new hubby.
(Starfire can barely get any teeth to show. The Empress raises her voice to address the crowd.)
Blackfire: My humble servants, we meet at moonset to bind my sister to this handsome, young Schlurch in joyous betrothal.
(Cut to Robin; the camera moves in a circular track to show him ringed by a detachment of vary angry guards.)
Blackfire: (voice over) Can any among us offer reason why these two lovebirds should not be together... (A knot of onlookers; she continues o.c.) ...forever?
(Silence. Back to Blackfire.)
Blackfire: Didn't think so. Then...do you, Glgrdsklechhh, take Starfire to be your wife, as decreed by the Grand Ruler of Tamaran?
(He says something that perhaps resembles the sound a bull might make after ramming the Hoover Dam head-on. Blackfire takes it as a yes.)
Blackfire: And do you, Starfire, take Glgrdsklechhh to be your husband?
(Cut to the unwilling bride during this line. She looks up at him and appears ready to vomit.)
Blackfire: Yes, sister dear?
(The proverbial cat has Starfire's tongue. Cut to the other side of a balcony window that gives onto this hall; Robin slams up against it and gets his first good look at the nuptials.)
(A guard closes in, and she looks up in his direction with a sharp gasp. More aggressors are coming up fast from both ends of the passage. He dives under a spear thrust; now the spectators turn to watch, murmuring amongst themselves at the disturbance, and guards move up to protect Blackfire and the couple.)
Blackfire: Silence! SILENCE! (A hush falls; she addresses Starfire viciously.) Do you wish to do what is right and take this thing to be your husband?
Starfire: I do... (Long pause; she finally finds her nerve.) ...not!
(Close-up of the big sister, whose eyes blaze red as she snarls in fury. Pull back; her body is wreathed in that same color power, and the Jewel burns white at her throat. One souped-up hand is raised high and pointed straight ahead.)
(Fade to black.)
(Opening shot: an extreme close-up of the Jewel and its blinding energy. Pull back slightly and tilt up as its wearer lifts her hand, then pull back again. Starfire takes a blast in the solar plexus that propels her most of the way to the far door. Her sister takes a few steps toward her.)
Blackfire: I thought we agreed you would do what is best for Tamaran, little sister! You will marry the Schlurch!
(As Starfire begins to get up, the rest of the Titans burst into the hall.)
Robin: Starfire! It's a trick! All of it! Blackfire's been lying to everyone!
(A confused murmur from the crowd; the camera pans slightly to follow her glare down the aisle. Standing up, she pulls off her crown.)
Starfire: You are not best for Tamaran!
Blackfire: You dare to challenge the Grand Ruler?
(Green flames surround Starfire's body briefly as the camera pulls back from her. When they dissipate, her wedding gown has been burned away, revealing her usual outfit beneath.)
Starfire: (evenly) I challenge my sister... (Extreme close-up.) ...for the crown!
(The feuding siblings lift off and charge at each other in midair, zooming sharply toward the rafters as they go. Blackfire gets the first strike, uncorking a red starbolt that plows through her sister's block and plasters her against a column. More shots come her way as she pulls loose to return to the fray. Robin watches all this for a moment before starting into a run.)
Robin: Starfire! (Galfore's hand reaches into view, stopping him.)
Galfore: (from o.c.) Hold! (Cut to him.) If anyone interferes, the challenge is void. The Princess will lose. (Back to Robin.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) 'Sides... (Pan to him, walking up.) ...our girl can handle herself.
(That girl dodges a couple of starbolts and a lunge, going up to the ceiling and coming down where Blackfire had been. A strafe of Jewel-enhanced eye beams puts her on the run; she retaliates with a couple of high-intensity knuckle balls, but Blackfire puts up a shield to stop them. Taking down the barrier, the Empress looks up with a gasp, just in time to get hit with an impressive overhand right and crash into the wall. Swooping down as she regains her balance, she has to leap away again as Starfire takes a few shots.)
(The chase ranges all over the hall-Starfire blasting away, Blackfire taking her own sweet time to counterattack. This red starbolt knocks its target back; cut to an adjoining chamber, through whose wall she is driven. Once she has skidded to a stop and risen into the air, she unloads a killer barrage at Blackfire, who has moved to the new hole. Shot after shot streaks toward the upstart Grand Ruler, throwing up so much smoke that the entire end of the room is soon hidden in gray clouds and green detonations.)
(Close-up of Starfire as she lets one last starbolt go. Her face then goes slack with shock-and the smoke clears to show Blackfire, standing in exactly the same spot and with not so much as a scratch on her armor. Cut to a close-up of the Jewel and pull back as she taps it.)
Blackfire: The Jewel of Charta. (It flares white; her eyes go red.) I'm invincible.
(The sisters charge at each other; now Blackfire puts her hands together and unleashes an energy wave. A coat of arms on the back wall disintegrates into splinters under the force of Starfire ramming into it, and she crashes down among the furniture. Not giving her a chance to rest, Blackfire seizes a couch and flies toward her as the other Titans, Galfore, and Glgrdsklechhh gather at the hole in the wall to watch.)
(Little sister dodges the flying divan, gets a table thrown at her next, and rushes into the air. Blackfire meets her with a column in hand, promptly scoring a broken-bat single across the auburn head; the hit packs enough of a wallop to send her plowing through two couches.)
Robin, Beast Boy, Cyborg, Raven and Galfore: (wincing) Ooooh!
(Blackfire lands to gloat over the collapsed Titan.)
Blackfire: Besides, you'll always be my little sister.
Starfire: (absolutely fed up) I am not so little anymore!
(She lets go with a monster eye blast and does not miss; big sister ends up flat on her back, then looks up only to find those violet boots angling toward her for a Mach-5 kick. Starfire's momentum caves in that patch of floor, and she grapples with Blackfire as both plunge into an arboretum on the level below, the camera tilting down to follow them to floor level. Little sister gets big one pinned, but is quickly blasted away with a red-eye special. Righting herself in midair, she counters with a fistful of starbolts to send Blackfire running/flying for cover.)
(Now the six spectators have gathered at the ceiling hole and are cheering wildly; the noise continues as the camera cuts to the gnarled trunk of a very large tree and tilts up. Starfire chases Blackfire among the thick limbs, eats a faceful of splinters when one is blown away just in front of her, and gets bulldozed to the far wall. Here, Blackfire has one hand on her sibling's wrist and the other on the opposite shoulder, pinning her back to the stonework; the Jewel flares over both of them.)
Blackfire: Earth has changed you, Starfire.
(She swings Starfire back and forth, hard against the wall, and drags her toward the ceiling. Cut to the wedding hall, where only a few guests remain; the floor buckles upward and soon fractures as the two girls crash through it. Starfire is flung down to bounce across the carpet, and Galfore and the other Titans run in. As his former ward and their teammate huddles on the floor, the megalomaniac brunette floats unhurriedly toward her.)
Blackfire: That's right. Bow down before your Grand Ruler.
Starfire: (lifting herself partway up) You may be the ruler of this planet, but you are not the ruler of me!
(This time, Blackfire is the one who has had all she can stand. Gathering the Jewel's energy, she fires a supercharged starbolt across the floor, but Starfire dives away and the blast wipes out the base of a column. The feuding teens charge at each other in midair; close-up of the crackling Jewel as Starfire gets a set of fingers wrapped around it, then pull back. White-hot intensity surges throughout the hall and gives way to an expanding red sphere of energy that swallows both of them. Galfore and the other Titans have to shield their eyes from the unbearable glare.)
(When it clears, cut to just behind Blackfire, whose furious little sister is facing her down, and pan a bit before cutting to a close-up of her face. The Jewel has been wrenched out of her neck piece, and she gasps in fright once she realizes this fact. Close-up of Starfire's raised fist, which she opens to reveal nothing but a few fragments of red stone and gold setting; she has single-handedly destroyed the gem that fulfilled Blackfire's mad dream of unlimited power.)
(She turns her hand over, letting the pieces fall, and charges with all the horsepower she can muster from an overwhelming sense of righteous fury. A wide beam from both eyes strikes Blackfire dead in the chest, hurling her into the wall, and a fresh bombardment of starbolts comes her way. Think of the primal rage Robin worked himself into while fighting Slade's robots in Part One of "Apprentice," triple it, and you have the idea. When the smoke finally clears, she lands to face Blackfire, who, despite the ferocity of this full frontal assault, is still on her feet. Not for long, though; she collapses with a weary groan, and her crown falls loose and tumbles to Starfire's feet. The victor picks it up and puts it on.)
Starfire: The challenge is complete. Tamaran has a new Grand Ruler.
(Wild cheering from the remaining wedding guests, the other Titans, and Galfore. Glgrdsklechhh floats to her.)
Starfire: I am sorry, Gilder...Glurgle...you, but there shall be no wedding. (He sighs heavily, then snorts.) And henceforth, my sister Blackfire shall be banished from Tamaran. (Blackfire stands up.)
Blackfire: Banished?! Are you joking? Where am I supposed to live?
(The booger-in-a-bowl makes a suggestion, doubtless his home on Drenthax. Close-up of Blackfire.)
Blackfire: You wish.
(Pull back; two guards lay hold of her arms and lead her toward the door.)
Blackfire: I won't forget this, sister dear!
(Starfire and Robin watch as she is led out of the hall.)
Robin: So now that you rule the planet, I guess you'll be staying here?
Starfire: I must do what is right for Tamaran.
(She walks o.c. as Robin drops his head, realizing that he is about to lose one of his best friends. Dissolve to a ground-level shot of the castle's rocky foundation, where a cheering multitude has gathered under a shower of confetti. A jubilant fanfare plays as the camera tilts up and cuts to Starfire and Galfore on a balcony, zooming in.)
Galfore: All hail Empress Starfire!
(Cut to behind the pair. The other Titans watch from distance as the cheering intensifies. Head-on view of the new ruler; the tumult dies out once she begins to speak.)
Starfire: Someone very wise once told me to listen to my heart. And so I overthrew my sister because she was not best for Tamaran.
(She glances ruefully over her shoulder; cut to Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven and pan to Robin. All four look as if every pet they have ever had just died. After gazing at them for another moment, she faces front again.)
Starfire: And now, my heart is telling me...that I am also not best for Tamaran. (Shocked murmurs from the crowd; she smiles.) My life and my heart is on Earth. That is where I belong.
(Pan to the other Titans, who have also begun to smile, on the end of this, then cut back to her.)
Starfire: (removes her crown) But I leave you in good hands. (places it on Galfore's head) The hands that cared for me as a child. All hail Emperor Galfore!
Crowd: All hail Galfore!
(Starfire turns to her four friends, the crowd's repetitions of this chant drifting up to them.)
Starfire: Let us now return to Earth, please. I am feeling the sick for my home... (her face flushes) ...my real home.
(Beast Boy sweats profusely and clutches himself, suddenly seized by the call of nature as in "Transformation.")
Beast Boy: Then let's hurry! I couldn't figure out how to use the bathrooms here!
Cyborg: We are not having any accidents in the T-Ship! You get me?
(He and Raven stride off, leaving the green Titan with the overfull bladder to bring up the rear.)
Robin: (to Starfire) I'm glad you'll be staying with the Titans for a long time and...not getting married. (He heads for the ship; pull back as Galfore comes up.)
Starfire: Yes. The next time, I shall choose my own husband. Who is to know? Perhaps there is a groom for me on Earth.
(She floats up, gives the new Emperor a warm parting hug, then flies over to join her departing teammates. Cut to a close-up of the broad bearded face, which breaks into a gentle ear-to-ear smile as he reflects on the day's events. Although Starfire has abdicated the throne, she has taken his lesson to heart and come away with something of even greater value. Fade to black.)