October 23rd, 2004
The Beast Within
(Opening shot: the exterior of Titans Tower under a starry night sky. Something dark cruises toward the island, just barely breaking the water's surface, and climbs ashore as an inky silhouette with strands of seaweed hanging from the arms. It makes its way along the stony path; pull back to show a tripwire laser beam stretching across at ankle level. One foot sweeps through as the black shape moves ahead.)
(Cut to the repair/diagnostic corner of Cyborg's room and pan to him, asleep on his inclined table. Close-up of his somnolent face, zooming in as an alarm and red flasher go off in response to the security breach. He snaps wide awake in an instant; in her room, Starfire sits up in bed with a sharp gasp and takes off from the blankets. Raven is already awake and on her feet, but not wearing her cloak; she summons it to herself and puts it on before walking through the door of her room. In the hall, Robin dashes into view around a corner. The only one not yet on the move is Beast Boy, who hunches down in his bunk to get away from the racket.)
Beast Boy: (sleepily) Five more minutes...
(He is yanked away with a startled yell by Cyborg. In the entrance hall, the Titans gather as a series of loud poundings shakes the camera; cut to a long shot of the double doors and zoom in slowly. The banging is coming from their other side, and finally they are slowly forced apart to reveal the swimming silhouette, which strides into the light to reveal itself as the alarm and flashers are switched off. It is...)
Robin: (as all stare, stunned) Aqualad!
Aqualad: (dryly) Your trash is in my ocean.
(Snap to black.)
(Opening shot: a schematic on the window/screen of the Tower's operations center. It shows a tall, slender structure with hemispherical domes at top and bottom; each of these is oriented with its curved surface facing upward, and support arms extend from its ground level. Aqualad steps in front of the display; as he speaks, pull back to show the Titans gathered at the couch.)
Aqualad: An undersea fortress, fifty miles off the coast-built by the former headmaster of the HIVE Academy, Brother Blood.
(On the end of this, he pulls out the television remote control and clicks, replacing the diagram with a full-screen close-up of the gray-haired leader Cyborg tangled with in "Deception." Cut to a pan across the Titans.)
Aqualad: (from o.c.) I'm pretty sure you guys have already met. Cyborg: Yeah, we go way back. I went undercover as one of his brainwashed students, but after I destroyed his school, we kinda lost touch. Aqualad: Because Blood moved out of your neighborhood and into mine. I tried to take him down on my own, but Blood used his mental powers to jam my telepathy. With no fish to help me... (Quick pan to Beast Boy.) Beast Boy: ...you got schooled. Aqualad: Pretty much. But I was able to contact an agent within the HIVE- (holding up remote) -and find out what the fortress is hiding.
(A click brings up a new view of the fortress, sliced open along its height to show the interior details. Tilt up from the base.)
Aqualad: A massive sonic resonator, capable of creating a tidal wave big enough to wipe out your entire city.
(During this line, the top dome glows and the camera pulls back to show the entire structure underwater, anchored on the sea floor. The aforementioned wave rushes toward icons representing the Tower and Jump City and washes them away. Cut to Robin and Starfire, who both gasp in shock, and pan to Beast Boy.)
Beast Boy: Dude! (Pull back to frame Cyborg.) Cyborg: Yo! That's not just any sonic resonator... (Enraged, he leaps to the front and shows his weapon.) ...that's my sonic cannon! Aqualad: (addressing his back) When you hacked into the HIVE Academy computer, the HIVE hacked into you. (Slow pan away from him.) Blood downloaded everything in your central schematic database. (Cyborg wheels around.) Cyborg: He read my blueprints?!? (eyes bugging out, head circuits going mad) MY PRIVATE BLUEPRINTS?!? Raven: And he's using your technology to attack the city. Cyborg: Then this is my mission. (His circuits go red.) I'm taking Blood down with my own two hands!
(Lightning flashes from both palms on the end of this; behind him, the background changes to show an explosion and his blue lights restore themselves.)
Cyborg: All right, listen up! While I go after him, y'all are gonna- Robin: (from o.c., calmly) Cyborg.
(The Boy Wonder pushes the explosion background out of the way, revealing the operations center again.)
Robin: They're your blueprints, so you're the only one who can shut down the resonator. While you're doing that, we will capture Blood. Cyborg: No, man, come on! This is personal! Just gimme a chance to- Aqualad: There's no time. The resonator will be fully operational by sunset. Robin: Okay, Titans. (Zoom in on Cyborg behind him.) Here's what we need to do.
(Cut to a close-up of the grimly disappointed Titan and zoom in slowly.)
Robin: (from o.c., fading out) Starfire and Raven, I need...
(Dissolve to within the silo used to launch the T-Ship in past episodes. The craft is hoisted into view as the camera pulls back; it is positioned over an opening floor hatch, below which the water of Jump City Bay is flowing-deep-sea duty today. It has been repaired since the Drenthax fleet shot it up in "Betrothed." A close-up shows the two girls in their usual cockpits, Starfire riding port, Raven starboard; the former giggles and waves while the latter looks like she is about to be sick. Robin, at the bow, presses a button on his control panel, and Cyborg waits tensely in his stern seat for a moment before the craft is dropped into the water.)
(Cut to beneath the hatch; the T-Ship gets itself under control and motors off down the launch tunnel. The hatch leading into the bay opens amid waving strands of seaweed, and the submersible zooms past Aqualad and Beast Boy, who has become a bull shark. All six heroes make their way over the floor of Jump City Bay, the T-Ship tracking the two swimmers from above; finally they reach the shelf that marks the transition to open ocean. Here, Aqualad and Beast Boy peel off into a sharp descent, while the quartet continues a more level course and disappears into the navy distance.)
(Cut to a very dark area-we are now quite deep indeed, but light comes as the two low riders advance into view. Beast Boy is now an angler fish, and the natural lantern appendage on his head throws an eerie green glow. Behind them, the T-Ship chugs along.)
Raven: Maybe we should pull over and ask directions. Starfire: (looking off) There!
(Cut to an overhead view of a large blue dome filled with circuitry and marked by a honeycomb of bracing members-this can only be Blood's installation, and the orange vessel steers straight toward it. As it moves, the camera advances over a ledge and tilts down to show the entire resonator tower built here, matching the schematic Aqualad brought up.)
(Cut to a close-up of one very focused young Atlantean and pull back to show this image on a large monitor. Shots of the T-Ship, the four seafaring Titans, and the shark-shaped fifth are displayed alongside, and this whole arrangement is in a huge, glass-walled underwater chamber within the tower. A hexagonal platform sits in the vast open space, at the end of a catwalk; there are a few guards and blue-robed personnel, as well as a large chair whose back is turned to the camera. The next voice that speaks tells us right away who is sitting in it.)
Blood: (from chair) Ah, yes.
(Head-on view of him; zoom in slowly. The guards are heavily armed and wearing yellow armor with insect-head helmets.)
Blood: The fish-scented failure returns. (He watches the screens.) And he's brought our old friend Cyborg.
(The big man's face expands to fill the monitor on the end of this.)
Blood: Marvelous. I'll finally have a chance to thank him for the use of his blueprints. (yelling o.c.) Bumblebee!
(Cut to ground level; a pair of slender, black-booted legs steps into view, and the camera tilts up to show them belonging to a young black girl. Gold belt set with a B, gold wrist guards, sleeveless black-and-yellow-striped turtleneck halter top, wings sprouting from the back, hair tied into two large puffs-it is Bumblebee, whom we saw briefly in the HIVE Academy cafeteria during Cyborg's undercover work in "Deception.")
Blood: Release the mind-controlled squid.
(She nods and taps a button on a nearby panel; outside, zoom in slowly on an opening portcullis set in a rock face near the structure. Out comes an enormous squid that has had a few modifications made: bright red eye implants, blue circuitry worked into the tentacles and head. Clearly Blood has been putting his inside knowledge of Cyborg to broad use. It charges, forcing Aqualad and Beast Boy to scatter, and seizes the T-Ship; Cyborg's eyes pop when he gets a good close look at one of the squirming tentacles.)
Cyborg: Hey! That's my tech too! Doesn't that dude have any ideas of his own? Robin: Evasive maneuvers!
(A powerful electric charge crackles over the hull; the bionic kraken releases its hold and the vessel zooms away. Up comes Aqualad with a burst of telepathy-but it fizzles out, ineffective against the electronics implanted in the creature's nervous system. Giving up brainpower for muscle power, he darts at the squid and lands a punch, only to get caught up in its powerful grip. Beast Boy comes to the rescue, biting cleanly through the grasping tentacle and allowing Aqualad to free himself. A thick black cloud of the beast's ink fills the screen to cover its escape; as it clears, the two swimmers survey the area. The shape-shifter has again become an angler fish in order to give a little natural light. A confused look passes between the two pairs of eyes.)
(Cut to elsewhere on the ocean floor. The T-Ship cruises down and around an outcropping, and Robin glances outward before eyeing the sonar display. Zoom in on a fast-approaching blip, then pull back. His eyes widen as a very large shadow extends over his cockpit; looking up with a shocked gasp, he finds the squid dropping toward the T-Ship like a ton of bricks.)
(Impact. It has now caught the ship and is squeezing hard enough to make the power flicker on and off. Starfire gasps as her canopy cracks and the systems short out, and Cyborg can muster no words while the water begins to flood into his fracturing cockpit. Raven, meanwhile, is already submerged to her chin; Aqualad and Beast Boy, again a bull shark, catch sight of the disaster, the former's jet-black eyes popping very wide-and then the T-Ship disintegrates in a mighty explosion that sends fragments flying everywhere. Tilt down from the spot as the four passengers tumble into the deep.)
(Now a whale, Beast Boy swoops low as quickly as his vast bulk will allow and opens wide to scoop up his teammates. Snap to black.)
Raven: (voice over) Please tell me we're not where I think we are.
(Snap to Cyborg and Starfire, the former using his shoulder-mounted flashlight to illuminate the area. They are inside the green leviathan's gullet and covered with drool-Raven's fears have been confirmed. More saliva drips down from above.)
Cyborg: I wish I could.
(Long shot, Robin in foreground; pan to Raven, truly revolted at the circumstances that have befallen the team. Back to Starfire and Cyborg.)
Starfire: Although Beast Boy's quick thinking has saved our lives, I believe I am...grossed out?
(He chooses that very moment to ascend, and all four Titans are flung yelling along his digestive tract as he angles upward. Robin seizes the uvula to keep from going all the way down.)
Robin: Hang on!
(Pull back slightly; Starfire clutches the wall of the throat, and Cyborg and Raven have a grip on the tongue. Outside; Beast Boy plunges through the rock formations, the squid hot on his tail. Aqualad watches him go for a second before rejoining the chase, but the huge cybernetic hulk knocks him aside with its momentum and he tumbles away, badly dazed. Beast Boy cannot lose his pursuer; inside, the four stowaways yell as they get rattled all over the place like ice cubes in the devil's own martini shaker.)
(Outside. The gargantuan changeling dives again, and he and the squid skim the ocean floor and head for Blood's resonator tower. Elsewhere, Aqualad settles to the floor and sits up, rubbing his head; he finds the mad dash heading straight for him now. Smiling coldly, he swims up a bit and shatters a rock formation with one mighty kick. Beast Boy squints ahead, his mind working at full throttle, and hustles under the collapsing stone chunks just before they crash down. The squid is not so fast on the draw, however, and ends up on the far side of the barrier Aqualad has just created. He and his three-hundred-thousand-pound partner smile smugly at their work.)
(Dissolve to a chamber within the tower. Circular hatches line the wall, similar to those used on torpedo tubes in submarines, and a deep-sea vehicle sits on a pad overlooking a water-filled bay for taking off. Pan slowly across the place, then cut to a close-up of the surface; a few bubbles pop up, followed by Aqualad's head. After a moment to scope out the place, he swims to the edge and climbs out. A hand signal brings up Beast Boy with a great splash and commotion. The four Titans in his gut are summarily vomited onto the floor; Raven has lost one of her boots.)
Raven: Two words...breath mints.
(Beast Boy resumes human form and sheepishly coughs up her other boot.)
Robin: (wiping himself off) Okay. Everybody knows their assignments. (Beast Boy gets out of the water.) Aqualad: Beast Boy and I need to take out the force field that protects the sonic resonator. (Raven puts on her boot.) Starfire: Raven, Robin, and I will attempt to capture the Brother Blood... (Pan slightly to Cyborg.) Robin: ...providing a diversion so that Cyborg can get to the resonator core and shut it down.
(Close-up of the last Titan on the end of this, then pan to a door behind him. It opens to admit a contingent of guards who immediately open fire.)
Cyborg: (bringing out cannon) Looks like we just had a change of plans!
(As he says this, Raven put up a shield to protect everyone. Cut to a pan across the group.)
Robin: You have your assignment! (Close-up of Cyborg; he continues o.c.) Move!
(With a last hostile glare, the bionic Titan sets off.)
Robin: Titans! Go!
(Raven opens a hole in her shield to let Beast Boy and Aqualad through. The shape-shifter becomes a fish as he and his partner hit the bay. Starfire pulls Robin aloft, and Raven takes down the barrier and glides away over the water. Cut to a close-up of Cyborg, his face sill distorted by frustration, then pull back; he opens a tube hatch and crawls in. Cut to its other side, a long and winding service duct that is just barely big enough for him to crawl through.)
Cyborg: Spiky-head little know it all. It's my blueprints, my bad guy, and my... (A hatch opens to one side.) Hm?
(Pull back. An identical hatch has just opened on the opposite wall, and the spot Cyborg has stopped at rotates 180 degrees to orient the apertures vertically. Gravity does its thing, and he drops out of sight with a yell; cut to the ceiling of a chamber and tilt down as the falls in through it. A large screen is set in one wall, and a ledge runs around the perimeter at its level, a few feet above the floor. Two intersecting walkways cross this space, stopping at a door set into each low wall. Cyborg crashes down near the center; as soon as he is on his feet, the screen winks on behind him to show Blood.)
Blood: Cyborg. So nice of you to drop in.
(Cut to behind Cyborg. Bumblebee steps partially into view near the camera.)
Blood: (on speaker) Say, you remember Bumblebee, don't you?
(During this line, she pulls a device from her belt. It looks to be made from thick wire bent into the shape of a stylized B. Pull back to frame her, Cyborg, and the screen; she has one of these items in each hand. Slow pan as she raises them; they glow while she walks toward him.)
Blood: You were my two top students at HIVE Academy. (Close-up.) But of course... (Pull back to frame Bumblebee.) ...Bumblebee wasn't a spy!
(She points the weapons at the camera with a savage yell and releases a double blast of energy that washes out the screen. Snap to black.)
(Opening shot: Cyborg, staring pie-eyed straight ahead. He backs up and darts away as Bumblebee's shots lance through the room, then goes into a high leap that carries him across the floor. Now they hold each other at gunpoint.)
Cyborg: (coldly) Hey there, Bee. Haven't seen you since- Bumblebee: Since you betrayed Headmaster and ruined our school? Cyborg: I was gonna say "the Sadie Hawkins dance," but yeah. That too.
[Note: A Sadie Hawkins dance is one in which girls ask boys to attend.]
(Close-up of the girl's needled expression.)
Bumblebee: You're gonna pay for that! Blood: (on speaker) Bumblebee! (Cut to him.) Less talking, more stinging.
(She lets her stingers speak; Cyborg counters with a cannon burst, and she does a little high jumping for her next shot. He is forced on the defensive, backing steadily up through the barrage until he is almost to the wall, and she drives her legs into his chest to push him the rest of the way. A new beam almost takes his head off; he goes on the run again, pushes up from a loose crate, and grabs a hanging overhead cable to swing away. Before he can get his Tarzan impression rolling, though, she slices the wire with one clean shot. Down he goes, bouncing across the floor and again barely missing a very close shave when he stands up again.)
(Cyborg's next move is to extend his right hand on a long cable and yank away both weapons at once. They are flung away to clatter behind him, after which he reels in his hand and turns it into the trusty cannon. Without missing a beat, Bumblebee kicks a crate up from the floor and knocks it toward her former classmate; he blows it apart easily, then looks up in surprise.)
(She is airborne, coming down for a kick; instead of driving the sole of her boot into his face, though, she plants it on his back and pushes off. The move puts her in easy reach of the swiped stingers, which she grabs up as Blood laughs heartily. Up comes the cannon; cut to his perspective, tracking her descent, then back to him. When the muzzle has come all the way down to horizontal, he fires at the camera. Blood stares intently ahead, then smiles broadly as Cyborg's face goes slack. His round has punched a smoking, glowing hole in the far wall-but the camera tilts up to show Bumblebee hovering among the cables, her wings beating like mad.)
Cyborg: You can fly? Bumblebee: We never had a class together. (firing) You don't know what I can do!
(He runs for it, dives across the floor, and returns fire; she dodges his shots and comes right down at him. One boot heel smashes a hole in the floor, a near miss, as he works his way up.)
Bumblebee: (hovering, shrinking) For example... (Zoom in.) ...why do you think they call me Bumblebee?
(The tiny villain charges straight at Cyborg, one fist extended for a punch that plows him back to the wall. Next she brings out the stingers, scoring hit after hit as tiny flashes of energy.)
Cyborg: Hey! Yo! Ow! Cut it...Come here, you little...
(He tries to snatch her out of the air, but she sidesteps the fingers and zaps the wrist; yelling in pain, he shakes his hand back and forth and blows on it. Suddenly his eyes go wide; cut to an extreme close-up of his face as she rises to hover just in front of his nose, then pull back. During this entire sequence, his eye implant briefly shows a pupil-a short sight gag. He gets zapped back and forth relentlessly, yelling in pain all the while; after several seconds, he winds up alone near the middle of the floor. Close-up behind him: he turns to the camera, and we see that Bumblebee has plastered herself across the bridge of his nose to stay out of sight. He glances here and there, not noticing her, but finally figures it out when she warms up her weapons.)
(Twitching his nose will not shake her off, so he goes to whipping his whole head back and forth. This shifts her enough to let him blow her off with a strong snort; she flies away and prepares another charge, but he claps his palms together squarely on her. When he takes his hands away, her wings are bent out of shape and she is badly disoriented from the hit. She drops to the floor with a weary groan, losing her weapons, and finds herself in Cyborg's immense shadow. It is cast by his descending foot, intent on crushing her, but she gets it in gear and takes off running.)
(After he has taken a few stomping strides, she clears the floor and doubles back to pick up the stingers. Cut to her perspective, zipping all around as he swipes futilely at her. Finally she homes in on his face, right between the eyes, and as she fires one off, the view shifts to the screen. Blood watches Cyborg tumble backward and laughs to himself; Bumblebee twirls her weapons as if they were a pair of six-shooters before tucking them back into her belt. She takes a moment to crack her knuckles, then closes in on the half-sitting Titan in the corner. He looks up just in time to take a flurry of fierce punches; despite her super-small size, the blows rock his head back and forth like a punching bag. Now she brings her legs into play as well for a short time before delivering a flying uppercut that propels him all the way across the floor.)
(Bumblebee grows back to normal size, draws a stinger, and lets Cyborg have it as soon as he touches down. He stumbles backward and finds both muzzles trained on him.)
Blood: Yes! (Cut to her; zoom in; he continues on speaker.) Perfect! (Screen again.) Sting him!
(She fires, just barely missing Cyborg's head and blowing out the screen; Blood's image gives way to static.)
Bumblebee: Okay. We're-
(She gets no further, as Cyborg is hurling himself at her with a yell and an extended fist. She counters his flying tackle by tumbling onto her back and flipping him away; he slams to the floor on his face, and she straightens up with an angry glare.)
Bumblebee: Show's over, Sparky. Blood can't see us. Drop the act. (He gets up.) Cyborg: Say what? Bumblebee: Aqualad told you there was a double agent inside the HIVE, right? (smirking) Well, you're looking at her. Cyborg: Say what?!? Bumblebee: Did you think you were the only spy at HIVE Academy? I've been working Brother Blood for months. Cyborg: And Blood couldn't brainwash you because... Bumblebee: There's not a man alive who can tell me what to do. Cyborg: Sorry, Bee, not buying it.
(He roars and charges across the floor, but she darts away easily and lands a kick to his back that dumps him flat on his face. Rolling over with a furious snarl, he gets her muzzles pointed squarely at his face and one of those booted feet planted on his chest.)
Bumblebee: Think about it, Sparky. If I wasn't on your side... (cooling down/holstering weapons) ...you'd be spare parts by now. If you're done wasting time... (offering hand) ...why don't we save your city?
(He gives the fingers a critical look for a long moment, then ignores them and straightens partway up under his own power.)
Cyborg: Don't call me Sparky.
(He stands and walks away. Dissolve to the screenful of static and pull back to show it on a small monitor on the arm of Blood's chair; he taps it a bit.)
Blood: (singsong) Bumblebee...oh, Bumblebee... (Suddenly frustrated, he smashes it.) Well, Cyborg, it seems you've destroyed my little friend. So I'll just have to destroy all of yours.
(He swivels in his chair, the camera panning slightly to frame the large wall monitor as he turns to it. The resonator tower schematic is at the center, while three corners show other views whose locations are marked. Top left: Raven and Starfire, blasting away in the chamber where the Titans entered. Bottom right: Aqualad and Beast Boy, now a hammerhead shark, swimming through a tunnel. Top right: the static from the knocked-out connection where Cyborg and Bumblebee slugged it out.)
(The camera zooms in on the two swimmers, and the view refines itself-we have gone from the screen to the actual location. A side hatch opens after they have passed it; the noise brings them up short, and they turn around to find a mass of bubbles ejected from the other side of the portal. These clear to reveal a school of giant piranha, each of which has artificial eyes-more of Blood's experimentation. Beast Boy and Aqualad bug out, the hybrid fish keeping pace easily.)
(Cut to the main chamber. A guard is flung backward to crash against a door; here comes Robin, his assailant, fighting staff and communicator in hand.)
Robin: I've got a fix on Blood's location, but we need to move fast. (Cut to Raven and Starfire.) Starfire: (as they move out) Yes. I am hopeful we will not encounter more HIVE soldiers.
(They have already done a number on the ones who attacked the team earlier on, judging from the groaning forms sprawled everywhere and the wrecked assault vehicles. Pan across the battleground, then cut to the far side of a closed door. It opens, revealing the three Titans.)
Robin: Huh? (Starfire gasps.) Raven: You had to say something.
(As she says this, cut to just behind Robin and pan slowly across this new area. A full battalion of guards is present and accounted for. The three trade a look and charge headlong at the massed forces. Cut to a junction of several corridors, the camera rotating from one to the next.)
Bumblebee: (from around corner) Why can't you just admit that you lost? (Zoom in on the end of one corridor.) Cyborg: (from around corner) Because I didn't lose!
(Their shadows move into view; cut to a close-up of the two shapes as he continues. She strides ahead; he stops and waves a finger in the air to make his point.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) If that fight was for real, you'd be beeswax! Bumblebee: (moving into view) But you thought it was for real. Cyborg: (surprised, leaning after her) You don't know what I thought!
(Sight gag: steam whistles from both nostrils as he moves along. Cut to a closed door, which opens to reveal Bumblebee on its other side; Cyborg catches up, and both stare upward in great puzzlement. Overhead shot of the pair, pulling back slowly-they have reached a new, three-way junction, and the place is dead silent except for the low distant hum of machinery. Back to them; Cyborg checks his forearm panel, while Bumblebee traces their path in the air with her finger. Both are trying to figure out which way to turn next, and both get an idea at the same time.)
Cyborg, Bumblebee: Follow me!
(They run into each other, having decided on opposite directions.)
Cyborg: The resonator core is this way. (pointing at forearm; it shows an arrow marked "THIS WAY") I'm the one with the high-tech sensors, remember? Bumblebee: And I helped build this place. Cyborg: (smirking) You must be so proud. Bumblebee: (floating up in his face) Hey! I was tracking Blood before you even knew who he was! So I call the shots, got it? Cyborg: (leaning into hers) No! 'Cause it's my tech, my mission, and without me, you'd have no clue how to shut this thing down! (He stalks away.) Bumblebee: (casually) Actually, I'd just boost the wavelength in the transmission matrix, triggering a meltdown in the amplification system. (Cyborg stops short.) Cyborg: I never told anyone about that glitch. How'd you- Bumblebee: (approaching, holding up a CD-ROM) I lifted your blueprints from the HIVE mainframe, so Blood can't ever use 'em again. Cyborg: (grabbing at it) Gimme that! (She backs up.) Bumblebee: Uh-uh. If you go down, I might need this to complete the mission. Cyborg: Please. They're not just plans. They're me-everything I am. My body, my brain, my feelings- Bumblebee: (passing him) Relax. I only read the sonic cannon stuff... (She stops and smiles a bit.) ...and a few memory files about the big crush you had on Jinx.
(Away she goes. He turns on his heel and starts into a flustered yell, but the sound of an incoming communication cuts him off. Robin's face appears on the panel.)
(Cut to him, Raven, and Starfire, fleeing down a tunnel before a barrage of laser fire from the guards. He has his unit out.)
Robin: We're approaching Blood's control room! (Pan behind them to the troops; one is knocked down by a starbolt.) Have you reached the resonator core?
(He and Starfire race along, while Raven stops briefly and throws up a barricade to cut off the guards' charge. Back to Cyborg and Bumblebee; the leader's face is still on the panel.)
Cyborg: Uh, almost. Robin: Well, get moving! We don't have much time!
(The big man lowers his forearm and trudges off past his unlikely partner; she follows after a moment, smiling smugly.)
Bumblebee: So if this is your mission, how come he's in charge?
(Both stop; his neck creaks loudly as he glares back at her. Without a word, he raises one fist and punches out a wall switch, bringing a bulkhead down to cut her off.)
(Off he goes. Her pounding on the barrier is heard, and the camera cuts to a long shot of it and pulls back slowly.)
Bumblebee: (from other side) Hey! Get back here! Open this door!
(Dissolve to the underwater tunnel. Beast Boy and Aqualad are now in full retreat from the school of cyber-piranha; reaching a vertical bend, they rocket around it and start straight upward. Panic is written all over the black-eyed face and the green predator's visage. Cut to just behind them, approaching a light at the upper end-but one set of deadly sharp teeth latches onto Beast Boy's tail, making his wide-set eyes bug out in pain. Cut to a large chamber with unremarkable walls and a large pool of water in its center. Aqualad leaps out and onto the floor, followed by the screaming Titan in human form. We have reached the top end of this shaft. Beast Boy runs all over the place, yelling and waving his arms; the fish is still clamped onto his rear.)
Beast Boy: Get it off, get it off, get it off, get it off! Aqualad: Hold still!
(Beast Boy stops, and Aqualad pulls the fish loose-taking a decent chunk of flesh with it. Close-up of the wound as the pained Titan leans over to inspect it.)
Beast Boy: Oh, my booty! I promise I'll never sit on you again.
(He kisses it. Pull back to frame the Atlantean, who is intently eyeing a crackling piece of gear that is just o.c.)
Aqualad: Come on.
(Beast Boy moves up; cut to just behind them and pan slowly to frame what is in front of them-a pair of large vertical electrodes at the far end of a short adjoining passage. One is set in the floor, the other in the ceiling, and high-voltage arcs snap and pulsate between them.)
Aqualad: We have to disable the force field so Cyborg can-
(He cuts himself off when a steel door slams shut, blocking their access to this generator. Both gasp just before an identical door falls to behind them.)
Beast Boy: Uh-oh.
(At the field generator end, two sets of large metal crushing plates slam together-one horizontal, the second horizontal-and a new set of doors slams shut to black out the screen. This immediately resolves into a different corridor as another door opens, and Robin, Raven, and Starfire charge toward the camera.)
Robin: Party's over-huh?
(Cut to a long shot of the doorway and pull back. They have arrived in Blood's control room, the large chamber in which he surveyed the Titans' movements, but not a living soul is in the place. He and his staff have given Robin the slip. Cut to the empty chair, panning back to the doorway; Robin's communicator beeps, and when he pulls it out, Aqualad's face appears on its screen.)
(Cut to him and Beast Boy, now in with the two pairs of press plates, and pull back. The latter is now a buffalo straining to keep the verticals from coming together to crush the pair. The horizontals pound relentlessly, ready to smash them flat. Aqualad has his communicator out.)
Aqualad: Robin! It's Aqualad! We need your help! We've walked into a trap!
(Back to the control room. The door that these three entered through seals itself behind them.)
Starfire: (pointing ahead) So have we!
(Cut to behind the group and zoom in on the glass wall that had shown the earlier monitor images. A small piece of glowing, beeping machinery is attached to the exterior surface. Cut to an overhead view of this wall-it is part of the tower's lower dome-as the thing detonates with great force. Inside, the three Titans are flung backward by the concussion and are immediately swamped by the water that has begun to stream in through the shattered glass. Extreme close-up of Starfire's eyes; she gasps, and we then see the gushers pouring in too many gallons per minute for anyone's comfort. Water floods across the screen.)
(Cut to the dark, open top end of a vertical cylindrical structure whose walls glow with circuitry-the details reveal that it can only be the core of Blood's resonator. The camera tilts slightly to give an overhead view of the floor; this weapon stands many stories tall and is mounted in the center of a large circular space. The central area is cut off by a chasm that is crossed by a catwalk.)
(Floor level. Now a timer can be seen on the resonator core, counting down from 35 seconds. The door is smashed off its hinges, and Cyborg steps in.)
Cyborg: It's charging to fire. (Tilt up a bit.) Gotta work fast.
(He races along the catwalk; just short of the inner end, though, an invisible force field-the one Beast Boy and Aqualad were supposed to knock out-crackles up and throws him backward. Once he is on his feet, he touches the barrier briefly, then punches it with all his force. No luck. Now he brings up his communicator.)
Cyborg: Yo, Robin! Beast Boy and Aqualad blew it! The force field's still up! (tapping panel) Robin? Blood: (from o.c.) I hate to be the one to tell you this, but... (Cut to him, walking in.) ...your friends have failed. Your mission has failed. And your sonic technology is about to become my greatest success.
(By now, the timer is down to 00: 06. Cyborg whips out his cannon.)
Cyborg: Not on my watch.
(Extreme close-up of the display, counting down from 2 to 1.)
Blood: Surf's up.
(On this line, he forms one hand into a shaka-the Hawaiian gesture adopted by surfers as the universal "hang loose" symbol. This consists of the thumb and pinky finger extended from a closed fist like a make-believe telephone, with the entire hand waggled slightly back and forth.)
(Behind Cyborg, the resonator core lights up with a new power surge. What comes next is a skull-shattering sound wave that drives him to his knees, hands to ears. A gigantic beam, identical to the one from his cannon, shoots straight up and soon widens greatly. A scream of unbearable pain is forced from his lips; pan quickly to Blood, who idly picks something out of his ear and shows no ill effects from the blast at all. He flicks away whatever he has dug up, and the camera cuts to a long overhead shot of the floor and tilts to put the resonator's top end in view. The blue-white energy nearly washes out the screen.)
(Cut to the surface of the ocean; it is now early evening of the following day. Just as Aqualad described in
Act One, a massive tidal wave slowly forms, exposing the upper end of the tower, and hurtles outward in all directions across the water. Long shot of the mammoth crests, then tilt down to point at a patch of flat water, rotate 180 degrees, and tilt up. Jump City and the Tower are directly in the path of the oncoming natural disaster, and the camera zooms in slightly as the view fades to black.)
(Opening shot: the exterior of the Tower, with the tsunami rushing up behind it. Inside the crushing chamber, at ceiling level; the walls are closing in fast, and the camera tilts down to frame Beast Boy and Aqualad straining against them. The former has now become a gorilla.)
Aqualad: Can't...stop it!
(Inside the flooded control room. Robin and Starfire bolt for the ceiling, Raven not far behind, and gasp for breath once their heads have broken through to air. Close-up of him.)
Robin: Everyone all right? (Pan to Raven.) Raven: Super, until we run out of air.
(Cut to the body of the resonator core and tilt down to floor level. Blood stands tranquilly before the huddled, twitching Cyborg; after a moment, the latter gets himself erect and lets his mouth and his cannon roar at the same time. Blood easily sidesteps, then pulls off his white robe with one fluid motion. Beneath it, he wears a red/black/gray outfit in the style of Japanese samurai. More cannon shots miss their mark due to his fancy footwork, and he tries a lunging strike that Cyborg barely parries in time. A gloved fist stops just short of the armored chest; the two hold their positions for a moment, and Blood flicks his wrist to knock Cyborg down with a powerful backhand. The big man is thrown against the force field and down to the catwalk. Blood charges in and lands a kick that sends him over the edge; a lower platform stops his fall.)
Cyborg: You're gonna wish you hadn't-
(He trails off into a yell as Blood comes down for another kick; this one flattens him out on his face. Now Cyborg gets up for a fresh flurry of punches, which the former headmaster blocks or evades effortlessly; he backs up steadily across the floor, then leaps out of range. His fist cocked back for a punch to take the gray head off its neck, Cyborg charges in one last time. The index and middle finger of one hand, held together, lash out toward his chest; snap to black, which is perforated by a flash of light as those two digits pierce it-this shot is inside Cyborg's paneling. Cut to a close-up of the hand and pull back; the Titan has fallen silent and frozen like a statue. He gasps softly, then staggers backward with a yell when Blood pulls his hand away.)
Cyborg: (winded) How did you do that? Blood: (tapping head) I read your blueprints, remember?
(The punctured fighter grits his teeth and charges with a new roar; what he gets is a palm thrust to the chest that sends him all the way back. Blood rushes in even before Cyborg has hit the wall and lands a kick that drives him into it hard. Both bionic shoulders slide open, revealing two sets of missile launchers; Cyborg fires off a long salvo, but Blood knocks away every shot but the last. This one explodes in his face, forcing Cyborg to shield his eyes from the glare. Cut to the floating patch of smoke as he approaches, then tilt up to show Blood a short distance above. He is completely unharmed, sneering for all he is worth, and he plunges through the clearing fumes for one last crushing kick.)
(Wipe to a close-up of Robin, who has now reached the control room's ceiling and is trying to keep his face above the rising water. Taking one more huge breath and holding it, he starts swimming. A floor panel is pulled loose under Raven's control and set over the hole in the glass wall, plugging it, and Starfire traces around the perimeter with starbolts to weld it in place. Robin slaps a disc onto the control room door and swims away while the thing flashes; back to the two girls. He reaches them as Starfire finishes sealing the breach.)
(Cut to a close-up of the disc, zooming in slowly, then to the corridor on the other side of the door. The device explodes with terrific force, ripping the steel open and allowing the water to flood out of the place. Robin, Raven, and Starfire are carried out on the tides and deposited, coughing and gasping, on the floor.)
Starfire: We are saved!
(She whoops and flips backward into the water; Robin celebrates by getting to his feet and running to a wall-mounted computer console. Cut to a close-up of his fingers flying on the keys and tilt up to his face.)
Robin: (shaking hair back in place) Let's hope we can still save the others.
(Pan slightly to the screen, which shows a schematic of the tower. A small window pops up; in close-up, we see that it is marked "Force Field Defense System" and has a red "Smash" button and a green "Cancel" one. The mouse pointer clicks the first of these, then the second, and the camera cuts to the machinery in the crushing chamber and pans to Beast Boy and Aqualad. The former is back in human form, and the walls have nearly squashed the two to jelly. With no warning, though, the vertical surfaces retract fully, leaving them to tumble free-Robin's hacking has paid off with interest. They stand up.)
Beast Boy: Do I look thinner to you?
(On this line, he turns to Aqualad, giving the camera a profile view of himself. He has been momentarily compacted front to back, so that his belt is far too big for him now and falls to the floor. As the door behind him opens, exposing the generator, he picks it up from around his ankles. Now Aqualad charges past him, and he sticks a thumb in his mouth and blows on it as if trying to inflate himself in the classic cartoon tradition. His head briefly swells like a balloon, and his body resumes its normal proportions.)
Aqualad: (running in) Quick! We have to short out the force field!
(Beast Boy stumbles after him, still trying to get his belt adjusted the way he likes it.)
Beast Boy: Stand back!
(He catches up with Aqualad, becomes an electric eel, and glides into the millions of amperes that course between the generator's two electrodes. Blinding flashes play across both them and the equipment, explosions roar out from the overloading systems, and finally a wall of smoke rushes across the screen. From here, cut to a close-up of Cyborg as Blood shoves his head against the force field protecting the resonator core. The contact causes him to groan in agony for the longest moment-and then the shield collapses, its generator having finally given up the ghost. Cyborg and Blood go tumbling through the space where it had stood.)
(Tilt up along the weapon's height as the protection recedes, then cut to Blood as he stands up.)
Blood: Impossible! (Cyborg rises to face him.) Cyborg: Looks like my mission still has a shot at success. Blood: (eyes crackling red) Now how can your mission still have a shot- (His hands glow as well.) -when you don't stand a chance?
(All that energy is directed at Cyborg, along with a vicious roar, and the Titan screams as he takes it all in the wounded chest. Slowly, inexorably, he collapses to his knees; Blood only moves closer and steps up the intensity until he is firing point-blank into Cyborg's head. His entire focus is on incinerating every last bit of wiring in the teen's body-so he does not notice the tiny figure of Bumblebee flying across the chamber.)
(She socks him with an uppercut that sends him hurtling gracelessly into a column at the base of the resonator core. Back to normal size, she lands by the smoking Cyborg and offers a hand; this time, he smiles and allows her to help him up.)
Cyborg, Bumblebee: You/I'll take Blood! I'll/You disable the core!
(The upshot is that they have agreed on who should do what. Behind them, Blood gets up as Cyborg runs off.)
Blood: Another spy? Tell me, was anyone at my school ACTUALLY THERE TO LEARN?!? (Sight gag: his head briefly grows on the end of this.) Bumblebee: (striking fighting pose) I learned plenty.
(Blood leaps straight up and she follows with a shout. They brawl in midair, the fight ranging all over the chamber, and Cyborg latches his left-hand grappling hook onto the catwalk and drags himself up to it. Approaching the core, he finds a small access port beneath the timer and thrusts his right hand inside; close-up of that arm.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) All right. (He reconfigures to canon mode.) Now just locate the transmission matrix... (Close-up of him.) ...pump up the wavelength, and...
(All his systems glow brightly; pan along the length of his arm, the energy spreading to every circuit. Pull back an instant before the whole thing blows out in his face, throwing him clear to the catwalk's far end and almost over the edge. When he looks up, he finds the entire resonator core burning out before his eyes; tilt up as Bumblebee and Blood fight their way across the screen. The beam issuing from the upper muzzle gives way to a colossal pulse that shakes the chamber and washes over both brawlers, making them break off and cover their ears.)
(His attention is distracted by the destruction in progress, so that Bumblebee has an opening to kick him out of the way. She smiles grimly up at the system that will soon be out of commission. Long, surface-level overhead view of the tower, which disappears in a vertical shaft of light that blasts up to heaven. The released energy creates a second wave that thunders outward as the wreckage is buried under a rapidly calming expanse of ocean water. It races along, colliding with the trailing edge of the first one. Cut to the exterior of the Tower; it is about to be swept into oblivion, but the tsunami starts to wind down just short of the island's shore. The second wave has set up enough destructive interference to knock it out. Pull back to frame Jump City as the cataclysm dissipates into gentle breakers that wash toward the shore.)
(Inside the chamber, the core's base blows out as Cyborg watches. Blood rushes to the doorway; cut to him.)
Blood: That's two headquarters you owe me. (He runs out.) Cyborg, Bumblebee: (from o.c.) Get him!
(They give chase, their feet and Blood's splashing the water that is flooding in due to the tower's breakup. Reaching a junction, they find Blood nowhere in sight; from around another corner, the other four Titans and Aqualad rush in for a rendezvous. Beast Boy is back in human form.)
Robin: We need to get out of here. Bumblebee: How? Cyborg: The T-Ship's toast! Beast Boy: (sticking out tongue) Hel-lo? (Everybody runs out, except for him and Raven.) Raven: I'd really rather just stay here and drown.
(He just shrugs and runs o.c.; Raven floats in place, apparently intent on keeping out of his gargantuan gut even if it means she has to go down with the ship. Finally Starfire yanks her away just before the whole ceiling caves in. Overhead view of the tower, which is lost in the thundering roar of one last explosion; Beast Boy swims away as a whale, carrying within him all but Aqualad, who is alongside. Fade to white.)
(Fade in to a couple of waves breaking on the island's shores and tilt up to the Tower. Zoom in on the upper stories, then dissolve to the operations center. All seven are here, Beast Boy in human form; Robin is at a computer console, checking a map projected on the window/screen. Zoom in slowly; he swivels in his chair, and the camera cuts to a close-up as he speaks.)
Robin: Our last tracking info shows our target heading east. We'll fan out and-
(A spot flashes; he turns back to the keys. Cyborg moves up closer, showing that the chest panel torn open by Blood has been fixed.)
Cyborg: You found Brother Blood!
(Robin shakes his head. On the next line, the map gives way to a shot of Dr. Light-the villain who got his at the start of "Nevermore"-helping himself to cash and gold bullion in a vault. Brilliant blasts lance here and there.)
Robin: Dr. Light found a bank vault.
(One shot whites out the screen, frying the camera that was providing this feed; it disintegrates into static, then winks out altogether to leave nothing but Jump City visible through the glass.)
Aqualad: Looks like your city needs you. (Close-up.) I'll go after Blood. If I run into any trouble- (holding up communicator) -I know who to call. (Pull back to frame Bumblebee.) Bumblebee: Actually, if he runs into trouble, I'll be there to bail him out.
(Robin springs from his chair and runs for the side door; all Titans save Cyborg head out after him, Beast Boy turning into a leopard. Aqualad goes for the main entrance, leaving the two former HIVE students alone in the operations center.)
Bumblebee: You want to come with? After all- (Close-up of Cyborg; she continues o.c.) -it's your mission too. (He thinks this over carefully.) Cyborg: My mission's here.
(She starts out after Aqualad, but stops before even taking one step and smiles.)
Bumblebee: By the way... (holding up his blueprint CD) ...I think this belongs to you...Sparky.
(She tosses it back to him and takes off for the exit. Robin's foot lands in view at the side door.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Cyborg! (Cut to him.) Time to go! (He runs out again.) Cyborg: (softly, to himself) Yeah. It just might be.
(His failure to avenge Blood's intellectual-property theft still weighing heavy on his mind, he races after the other four Titans. Fade to black.)