Teen Titans
Air Date
September 4th, 2004
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(Opening shot: a close-up of the locking mechanism on a door.)

Robin: (voice over) It's simple.

(Snap to black, against which two bright red strokes flash to form an X, then fade in to the lock. The tumblers line up, releasing the mechanism.)

Robin: (voice over) There is good...and there is evil.

(The door slides open a bit, showing black beyond. Cut to inside; a caped silhouette slips in.)

Robin: (voice over) There are those who commit crimes...

(The figure runs ahead, and the shaft of light widens to show Cyborg pushing the door open and the rest of the Titans gathered around him. All are in silhouette.)

Robin: (voice over) ...and those who stop them.

(They advance into the room, the light coming up a bit to show them properly; Robin gives a hand signal and all charge. It takes a second for Beast Boy to get his head and body going in same direction as he brings up the rear. Cut to inside an elevator shaft; a grappling hook flies up and o.c., and the caped intruder ascends on the line.)

Robin: (voice over) The two sides are opposite... (Tilt down; all but Beast Boy stand on the car's roof.) ...as different as day and night.

(On the end of this line, Raven exerts her powers on the cable pulley to set the car in motion. After it has risen o.c., Beast Boy enters the shaft through an open door; he drops a few feet before turning into a giant bat and flapping his way up. Cut to a close-up of a laser beam that stretches across an open doorway at ankle height to act as a tripwire. The unauthorized visitor steps into view and kneels down on the next line, without breaking the light path.)

Robin: (voice over) And the line between them is clear.

(A device is set on the floor, and a mirror pops up from its top; this is angled to redirect the beam straight up. Pull back to show that this passage is protected by an entire grid of lasers; all of which have been neutralized with mirrors set on the floor and clamped to the doorframe. The thief sprints ahead, and Robin, Raven, and Starfire keep up the chase. Cyborg is the next one through, but he has to duck in order to clear the top of the frame and a few mirrors are knocked loose. Close-up of Beast Boy, in human form and running flat out; suddenly he becomes very surprised as the camera pulls back. The beams snap into place again, but he becomes a mouse and slips through easily.)

(Close-up of a control panel. A shadowed fist smashes it.)

Robin: (voice over) Or at least... (The figure runs past.) ...it's supposed to be.

(In another area of this place, which could be a warehouse, the Titans hit the brakes one at a time and Starfire lets off one very shocked gasp. Cut to a close-up of the intruder's face and pull back to frame the body. The light has come up sufficiently to reveal this person as Red X: the villainous alter ego Robin assumed to deceive Slade in "Masks." Snap to black.)


Act One

(Opening shot: the same close-up/pull-back shot of Red X.)

Beast Boy: Red X? I thought Robin was Red X!

(Quick pan to the black-clad criminal. His voice is a bit higher and younger-sounding than when he first crossed paths with the Titans.)

Red X: Think again. (He fires X's from both palms.)

Robin: Titans! Go!

(All but Raven scatter as those projectiles stick in the ground like throwing stars; they explode in quick succession, and she puts up a shield just before the line of blasts reaches her. Taking it down, she looks across the room and finds Red X charging at her for a flying kick. Up goes another barrier, but he disappears in midair and winks back in behind her. A low sweeping kick cuts her legs out from under her; he vanishes again, then comes back a moment later once she has hit the ground. He pulls out another X, this one folded up, and flicks it out like a switchblade. Before he can do anything with this weapon, a starbolt blasts it out of his hand; cut to Starfire, on the warpath with both fists blazing.)

(Red X does a long, high somersault across the warehouse, dodging every starbolt that comes his way, and rebounds off the far wall. The return trip carries him over her head; he kicks her in the back and she has to move fast in order to catch up. Off they go, he leaping from one girder to another, she firing from above. Turning in midair to face her, he shoots a red energy beam from each hand; these hit two adjacent vertical girders and ricochet down at an angle to form a large X. Starfire flies right into the center of this, gets blasted with one agonized yell, and drops out.)

(Up comes Beast Boy as a pterodactyl; down he comes as a large, roaring orangutan, but the enemy shoves an X into his mouth, wedging the jaws wide open, and gets away easily. The green primate struggles with the device for a moment, then becomes a hippopotamus and opens wide to let it drop free. One glance toward the floor shows him just how precarious his position really is, a massive animal balanced on a single steel beam, after all, and he slides halfway down to hang from his front legs. The strain is too great; he plummets into a stack of crates, while Red X drops neatly to the floor nearby.)

(Pull back a bit as the masked evildoer looks up in surprise. Now Cyborg rushes in for his turn; in response, an X is fired from one gloved palm. The Titan skids to a halt, but instead of striking him, the projectile stops just short of his face and extends itself like a pair of giant rubber bands. Each of the four ends adheres to a different crate in the stacks; these are then pulled back in at high speed, smashing against him.)

(Close-up of Red X. Behind him, Beast Boy returns to human form and Starfire swoops down from above. Pan a bit as he looks off to his other side and Raven moves in there, then pull back to frame Cyborg; standing up from the pounding he just took. The big man flicks a chip of wood off his shoulder, perhaps taking the old expression too far in showing his readiness to fight, and brings up his sonic cannon. On the next line, all four Titans move in, Beast Boy turning into a Sasquatch, Raven levitating a crate.)

Red X: Come on, kids. (Close-up; he points to the X on his chest.) X marks the spot.

(A cannon blast slices toward him. Pull back; just as it reaches his location, he leaps to avoid it and does a second jump that puts him on the floating crate. Pushing off from this spot, he dives past a few starbolts and comes down in a crouch, and the camera pulls back and tilts up to frame the huge green creature behind him. Beast Boy roars and lifts both fists, but Red X vanishes just in time to avoid their impact. The empty palms get a long, puzzled look as both girls regroup behind their owner; he shrugs and the camera zooms in quickly on a stack of crates behind the trio as Red X appears atop it.)

(Now, at long last, Robin enters the fray with a flying tackle that carries his opposite number off the stack. Their silhouettes tumble across the floor; in full detail, both come up in a crouch and face each other down. Robin whips a birdarang at Red X, who winks out in order not to catch it with his face; as it returns to the thrower, the target materializes behind him and throws a punch at the back of his head. Robin sidesteps just in time, drops to the floor, and brings both legs up for a kick; however, Red X blocks it with one hand and pushes himself into the air from the steel boot soles. Up he goes in a high arc, which brings him back to floor level to face Robin again.)

(The skull-faced figure stands his ground as Robin aims a punch, then dodges it with lightning speed at the last split-second. He catches the next one and goes airborne off the extended arm; as he drops, he extends one leg straight down for a kick, and we see that his boot sole is marked with a skull and an X. Laid out flat for the moment, Robin catches the foot and slings Red X bodily across the room to crash into the wall. Before he can move or react, the Boy Wonder rushes over and plants a hand on the masked face.)

Robin: Who are you?

Red X: If I wanted you to know that, would I be wearing a mask?

(He seizes that wrist, sending a powerful jolt of electricity up Robin's arm to incapacitate him, and lands a left jab to the face. The Titans' leader is driven against a stack of crates; his impact smashes them to kindling and reveals Cyborg, Raven, and Starfire on the other side. The first two charge in as Red X gets both palms ready to go.)

Raven: Azarath Metrion--

(Before she can finish the incantation, an X sails into view between her and Cyborg; it zaps both and causes each one's shot to blast the other. Cut to Red X, who just stands in the glare.)

Red X: Looks like you got your wires crossed.

(He immediately has to do some gymnastics to stay ahead of the starbolts that come from the flying Starfire. Holding both arms straight out, palms facing front and touching, he fires a large X ahead of himself. Starfire stops in midair and promptly gets plowed away by the device, which sticks itself to the wall to bind her there. Close-up of her as she struggles.)

Red X: (from o.c.) You know, cutie... (fingers Starfire's chin; pull back to frame him) ...the only crime here is that you and I haven't gone out on a--

(He never finishes the sentence, as a mighty eye blast cuts him off and sends him thudding into a crate stack. When he looks up, he finds Beast Boy charging in; the green Titan is back in human form, but turns into a polar bear in a twinkling. The black-clad enemy slams one palm flat onto the floor, sending glowing red lines out in all four directions to form a large X. Snap to black, which is cleaved by one of the streaks and then opens to show the warehouse from below floor level; we have just shifted to the basement. Beast Boy, in mid-leap, drops toward the camera like a rock as Red X steps to the edge of the fissure he has just opened.)

Red X: Watch your step.

(He leaps across the opening. Cut to Robin, still badly dazed and lying among the remains of the crates he hit; a black boot comes down on his chest and nudges him aside. The movement reveals an object half-buried in the smashed planks, and Red X clears away the debris to expose it fully. It is a device that looks something like an old-style "pepperbox" revolver: several barrels bored through a cylindrical block that runs the full length from trigger to muzzle. In addition, a larger barrel is cut through the center of the entire assembly. The thief picks up this item and bounds away before Robin can even stand up. Once the spiky-haired hero is back on his feet, though, he gets moving in a hurry. Close-up, tilting down to his feet.)

Robin: I won't let you get away with--

(An X flashes into view and wraps up his ankles, leaving him to pitch forward onto his face. Red X stops and faces him.)

Red X: (twirling/holstering the device) Better luck next time, kid. And thanks for the suit.

(He presses a button on the belt, starts to disappear, and is stunned when he winks right back into place. Extreme close-up of that button, which lights up with a red X as he hits it again.)

Red X: (from o.c.) Come on, come on!

(Still no luck. Robin gets himself upright, breaks free of the ankle bindings, and charges again.)

Red X: Great.

(He wheels into a run, with Robin close behind. Cut to the roof of the warehouse, one of whose skylights is open; the momentarily foiled felon leaps out through it, as does Robin, and off they go. It is nighttime. Close-up of Red X's face, tilting down to his belt; he hammers the vanish button again, getting nothing but a few sparks, and the camera pulls back as Robin throws himself ahead. Red X leaps high and far.)

Red X: Catch you later.

(He finally makes the escape he has been trying to pull off. As Robin stands, Starfire flies up to the roof and lands nearby with an incredulous, saucer-eyed stare. After a moment, she jabs a finger repeatedly against his shoulder, eliciting grunts of pain as the other three run over. Beast Boy is back in human form.)

Robin: Hey! Star! Ow! (He grabs her wrist.) That hurts!

Starfire: Then you are not a hologram?

Robin: No. (He lets go.)

(She gives him a suspicious look, recalling the decoy he used to mislead the others in "Masks." Sight gag: she floats next to him in "Super Deformed" style and pokes some more as the other three goggle. During the following line, many more SD copies of herself appear and prod him from every angle.)

Starfire: The last time we faced the Red X, he was you in disguise, and you were not really there. (He throws them all off; flames fill the background.)


(Normal background resumes, and all the SD Starfires pile up and reassemble into the original.)

Starfire: (beaming) He is not a hologram. (Cut to Beast Boy and Cyborg.)

Beast Boy: He could still be a robot. (to Cyborg) Check him for batteries.

(The resident expert on that subject pulls a rubber glove onto one hand and extends the index finger. Pan slightly from the upraised index finger to put Robin in view; he completely freaks out once he realizes where that finger is supposed to go.)

Robin: Wait! Please! (faces the others' silhouettes) It wasn't me! (puts his right hand to his heart and his left hand in the air) I promise!

(Head-on view of the four disbelieving Titans.)

Robin: (from o.c.) It wasn't me.

(They trade an assortment of glances. Pull back; he turns around and walks across the roof.)

Robin: Red X was a mistake, a mistake I won't ever make again.

(Dissolve to just inside a closed steel door, which opens to show him on the other side.)

Robin: (voice over) I'm supposed to be one of the good guys. (Pull back. a computer sits on a desk.) To always do the right thing.

(Cut to elsewhere in this room; computer equipment is arrayed along the walls, and he advances along the way.)

Robin: (voice over) The line is supposed to be clear.

(He reaches the desk. Close-up of the dark monitor; his face appears reflected, and the camera zooms in a bit.)

Robin: (voice over) But for me, back then, it wasn't.

(Dissolve to a pan across a section of Jump City, where Slade's commando robots are braced for battle. The lighting has gone red and will remain so until further notice. On the next line, the camera reaches the secondary robots seen in Part Two of "Aftershock," then a close-up of the masked mastermind's face.)

Robin: (voice over) A madman was threatening the city, and I had to stop him.

(The camera has now passed into blackness on the other side of Slade's head. Tilt up through it to a view of Robin, suiting up as Red X.)

Robin: (voice over) So I became Red X. (Stop on a close-up of the mask.) A ruthless thief who could get closer to the madman than Robin ever could.

(During this line, pull back and pan to show him eyeing one of the microchips he stole in that past mission, then tilt down from the red expanse to show him leaping above Cyborg's cannon blast during that rooftop battle. Beast Boy lies glued to the surface. More blackness now; pan to a shot of his room, in which Starfire has discovered the holographic trick.)

Robin: (voice over) But I didn't tell my teammates, and my plan didn't work.

(Black again. Tilt up to Slade's robot double, landing a punch to Robin in the climactic final showdown.)

Robin: (voice over) I almost lost my life, and my friends.

(On these last three words, the other four Titans' images appear and start to float around him in a circle, their backs turned and their faces set in cold anger.)

Robin: (voice over) It was the closest I've ever come to crossing the line.

(The rotation stops, leaving him to face Starfire's back. Snap to black, which resolves into the Red X suit as it is lifted into view on a board.)

Robin: (voice over) And I thought it was in the past.

(On the end of this line, a heavy vault door swings shut in front of the view; it is decorated with the skull and X. Pull back across the room to put Robin in view, watching as the tumblers spin to lock it up.)

Robin: (voice over) But now...

(The red lighting ends as the shot dissolves to the same room in the present. Robin stares at the vault, whose door has been ripped off the hinges, and the now-empty backing board.)

Robin: (voice over) ...someone else has crossed that line. (Extreme close-up of his face, zooming in slowly.) And it's my job to stop him.

(Cut to an extreme close-up of Cyborg's face.)

Cyborg: But who is he?

(Pull back. He, Raven, and Starfire are in the operations center of Titans Tower. On the window/screen are several pictures of Red X.)

Cyborg: I mean, if Robin's the ex-Red X, who's the new guy?

(Pushed by Beast Boy, a dry-erase board slides into view and knocks him away. Quick spin, followed by a close-up of the lower left corner that has Robin's name written on it in lower case. During the next line, the camera moves over the rest of the surface, which is covered with figures and notes; at the center is a large picture of the skull-masked face. Notes: "time-traveling" (Nightwing, from "How Long is Forever?", and an alarm clock); "inter-dimensional imp" (Larry, from "Fractured"); "part of a clone army," (Robin dressed as a Star Wars stormtrooper); "evil twin" (Robin, an angelic baby, and Nibor, his devilish double); "long lost brother" (a bald, goateed, older version of Robin, carrying a bundle on a stick); "Jason Todd" (a different, slightly fatter fellow in the Boy Wonder getup); "bionic monkey" (robot and monkey heads, DNA strand marked with Robin's face, a half-robotic primate version of Robin).)

[Note: In the comics, Jason Todd became Robin after Dick Grayson gave up the role. Also, the "long lost brother" is a caricature of Scott Menville, who does the voices of Robin and Red X.]

Beast Boy: Okay. If he's not Robin's evil twin, then he's obviously a bionic monkey infused with Robin's DNA.

(Raven and Starfire give this theory the same credence they would allow if he had just said that hot dogs were raining from the sky, and when Cyborg pops up behind them, he has the same reaction. Raven reaches out with one black-glowing hand; behind Beast Boy, her powers hit the board and set it spinning. He is caught up and flung into the kitchen with a yell, and the impact throws several food items into the air, followed by a creature that lands on the counter; one of the large moth larvae seen at the end of "Date with Destiny." Starfire claps both hands to her mouth in shock as it wriggles along, but Raven does not notice. Evidently, somebody decided to keep that thing as a pet after all.)

Raven: Face it. Red X could be anyone. Anyone smart enough to find the suit and dumb enough to take it for a joyride. (Beast Boy puts his head up woozily.)

Starfire: And when Robin returns, he will help us to discover who. (Robin enters and crosses to the window/screen.)

Robin: It doesn't matter. I created Red X. Every system, every weapon. (Close-up; pull back slowly.) Whoever's inside that suit, he's my responsibility.

Cyborg: Well, if we're gonna catch him, we at least need to figure out what he's after.

Robin: I already know.

(He taps a computer key; the pictures on the window/screen are replaced by the X-shaped structure of a molecule.)

Robin: Xenothium. The fuel that powers the suit. (Starfire gasps.)

Raven: No!

Beast Boy: (storms out) Aw, man, I never understand anything! (Close-up of Cyborg, on a black field.)

Cyborg: Xenothium?!? You powered that suit with Xenothium?!? Are you crazy, man? That stuff is dangerous, and unstable! Tell me you were not stupid enough to go messing with it!

(Sight gag: his head flaps like the Canadian characters on South Park. During the previous line, pull back to show him within an O that has been put in the center square of a tic-tac-toe board. The camera continues moving about. First move: he yells at SD Robin, in center left, as red X pops up over him. Second move: an O in bottom left, Cyborg moves down here, and a second Robin appears at top right and is X'ed. Third move: O in bottom center, Cyborg moves to it, a third Robin getting X'ed at top center. Fourth move: O in bottom right, Cyborg moves here, and a red line is drawn through his three-in-a-row.)

(In front of the screen, Robin pops up in normal style, his cape wrapped tightly and his teeth gritted. Blowing out a visible snort, he unfurls himself.)

Robin: Like I said, it was a mistake.

(Shift: camera points at the five through the window/screen, and a schematic of the purloined revolver-like device pops up on it. Cut to him as he speaks.)

Robin: The scanner Red X stole will locate any Xenothium within a ten-mile radius.

Starfire: So we must locate it first. (Pan to Cyborg at a console.)

Cyborg: X isn't the only one with a scanner. (He reels a cable from his chest panel and plugs it in.) I'm downloading the molecular signature and transmitting to your communicators.

Robin: (from o.c.) Thanks. (Pan to him, walking to the door.) But I won't need it.

Cyborg: How are you gonna find the Xenothium without a scanner? (Head-on view of Robin.)

Robin: The same way I found it the first time.

(By this point, he has passed out of the operations center. The door closes behind him to black out the screen. Snap immediately to a long shot of the Tower, seen from within Jump City, and pan/tilt up to an observatory that sits on a mountain peak nearby. Instead of a telescope, the dome sports a large, protruding object covered with tarps. Close-up of this; Robin climbs expertly up the dome next to it and leaps onto the thing. A misty exhaled breath, it is a very cold night, and he heads inside.)

(Cut to the interior of the facility; we see more of the concealed object, along with various crates and barrels. Pan to the base as Robin walks along the length down to it. Jumping to a nearby balcony, he lands in a crouch, stands for a look around, and is greeted with a laser shot from o.c that nearly takes his foot off. More fire forces him to take cover behind a cluster of barrels; one bolt almost burns his hair to the roots. He gets moving after a second, avoiding shots that blow holes in the various cargo, and the shooter can be seen down the way, a biohazard-suited figure at the far side of the observatory. Robin jumps onto a pile of crates and hurls himself down on the attacker. The weapon, something like a long electric cattle prod, skids away across the floor, and the Boy Wonder shoves its user up against the wall. It is an elderly, snaggle-toothed fellow, wearing emergency breathing apparatus plugged into one nostril and goggles that hide his eyes entirely. He is...)

Robin: Professor Chang. Remember me?

Professor Chang: Ah. The good little boy who likes dangerous toys. (He giggles.) How could I forget?

Robin: Xenothium. Where do you get it?

Chang: Nowhere. Suppliers skipped town months ago. That stuff, there's no way to get any. Unless... (Angered, Robin shoves him harder.)

Robin: Talk!

Chang: There's a tech company on the south end. Legend has it that they keep a generous supply of Xenothium ore in their vault. But it's not for sale, and it's locked up tight. You'd have to steal it.

Robin: Not interested. (He throws Chang down, leaps away, and continues o.c.) But I know someone who is.

(The old fellow gets to his knees and looks around confusedly as the camera zooms in a bit. Dissolve to a patch of quiet water and tilt up to show it by the docks. All is calm among the deserted warehouses as Cyborg sweeps his built-in flashlight across the area. Close-up of the moving spot of light; his feet step into view, and the camera tilts up to frame him. He addresses his forearm communicator.)

Cyborg: West side's clean. You guys find anything yet? (The panel winks on, showing Starfire in a library.)

Starfire: Thus far, my search has been unsuccessful. (New view slides up, bottom two-thirds: Beast Boy in a zoo.)

Beast Boy: What she said. (New view, bottom third: Raven in a cemetery.)

Raven: Ditto.

(The picture gives way to static, which in turn resolves into Robin's face. He is somewhere else in Jump City.)

Robin: Titans! I know where Red X is going to strike. Sending coordinates. (Cyborg lowers his forearm and packs in the flash.)

Cyborg: On my way. (looks elsewhere) Huh?

(He is hit with a blast of energy that makes him scream and drops him to the pavement like a ton of bricks. The camera focuses on his unconscious face as he falls, and the view fades to black.)

Act Two

(Opening shot: a section of the Jump City skyline. After a couple of seconds with no action except for the car horns echoing from ground level, cut to a long shot of a building's observation deck and zoom in. A caped silhouette stands at the edge; in close-up, it is revealed to be Robin, who has once again wrapped his cape closely around his shoulders. This, then, is the tech company Chang referred to. Behind him, a green owl flits in and turns into Beast Boy.)

Beast Boy: (tossing a feather away; it vanishes) So, you're pretty much kicking yourself for not getting rid of that Red X suit when you had the chance, huh?

(Robin's only answer is his motionless back. After a long, tense silence, the green joker chuckles nervously.)

Beast Boy: Uh, forget I said anything.

Robin: I couldn't destroy it. The Xenothium power core is too dangerous to dispose of. (Long overhead view of the deck, pulling back; he is heard from it.) It was supposed to stay locked away.

(Back to them. Having said his piece for the moment, he stands quietly as Raven emerges from the deck.)

Raven: No sign of Red X. (Starfire touches down.)

Starfire: Nor of Cyborg. (Robin fires up his communicator.)

Robin: Cyborg! Report! (Back to the two girls; he continues o.c.) Cyborg!

(Pull back to put him partly in frame; he lowers the unit to his side.)

Robin: (walks past them) X must have attacked him. If Cyborg's hurt, it's my fault.

Starfire: Robin... (Profile close-up of him.)

Robin: I'm responsible, Starfire, for everything that's happened. (Pull back; she approaches.)

Starfire: No, Robin. The error you made, it is in the past. You are no longer the one inside that suit.

Red X: (from o.c.) And personally... (Tilt up; he is on the roof.) ...I think it looks much cooler on me. (He throws a handful of X's.)

Robin: Move!

(The Titans do so as the throwing-star weapons punch into the deck. X leaps from his perch and catches sight of Beast Boy and Raven moving in fast; the former becomes a rhinoceros while the latter gets a spell ready. Without missing a beat, the marked villain whips out a large X and scales it at the pair. This one extends its arms to tie up Beast Boy, sending him off balance to crash into Raven, and the bound pair tumble across the deck like a three-ton bowling ball. Starfire, in their path, strains to slow them down; close-up of her boots as they slide to the edge and finally stop. However, the momentum bends her backward and she finds herself looking at a very long drop to the street. Pull back as she gives one last desperate heave and finally gets herself upright, hoisting the two Titans overhead. Sight gag: flames roar up behind her briefly and a fight bell rings before she sets them down.)

(Elsewhere on the deck, Robin charges at Red X and prepares to throw a punch, but the enemy creates an X in one palm to block it. The Boy Wonder rushes again for another strike; the enemy forms a second shield and uses it to push him away, down to the concrete. As soon as Robin stands up, a gray glove plucks the bridge of his mask, stretches it like a rubber band, eliciting a pained yell, and lets go. The snap leaves Robin flailing his arms, trying not to drop backward; he finally regains his balance and claps hands to eyes. Red X takes advantage of the distraction to bail out by leaping off the deck into free fall, heading for a domed roof set many stories down.)

(Robin lowers his hands, exposing eyes and mask that throb scarlet with the pain; this soon subsides and he adjusts the disguise as if it were a pair of eyeglasses. At a distance are his three teammates. Raven blows Beast Boy's rhinoceros tail out of her face, which is comically distorted for a moment by her disgust at the position she is in.)

Raven: And now, I smell like rhino butt.

(Starfire tries to pull her loose, without success; the snap-back sends her flying o.c. and Beast Boy resumes human form.)

Beast Boy: (angrily) Dude! You think you gave this guy enough gadgets?

(Dissolve to the interior of a large round chamber, near the convex glass ceiling Red X jumped toward. Robin drops in through an opening at the center; tilt down quickly as he plunges to the floor. The movement reveals that this place is several stories tall, almost entirely underground, with a transparent vertical shaft near one wall running the full height. Behind him, Raven and Starfire descend and are joined by Beast Boy as an owl. Now separated from Raven, he resumes human form.)

Robin: Split up, and be careful. I don't want anyone else getting hurt.

(All four do so, Beast Boy turning into a bloodhound as he moves out. Robin checks a doorway, finds nothing, and runs off down a hall. Wipe to another empty stretch; Raven quickly makes her way along, and as she passes on open doorway, a broad silhouette ducks out of sight. She gives it a wary eye before entering, and the camera cuts to the other side. Now she is in a room, alone only for a moment; a figure, eyes visible only as red spots, steps around the frame and energizes a weapon. Cut to a patch of the far wall; her yell is heard from o.c., and a moment later, she is driven flat against it by a gush of viscous red liquid that solidifies on contact. The mess piles on, thicker and thicker, and is slowly directed upward to cover her entire head.)

(Wipe upward to a bit of bare floor. Beast Boy's canine snout advances into view, sniffing for any and all clues that might have been left behind. He stops after a moment, fixing the camera with a puzzled stare, and turns to look over his shoulder as a silhouette matching the one that took down Raven draws a bead on him. In a moment, he has been snared with a laser collar attached to the end of a long pole; the sort of device used by animal control workers to catch unruly dogs, and given a strong electric shock that makes him yelp in pain.)

(Wipe to yet another hall. Starfire advances into view, her back to us, and finds no one immediately present. However, the camera follows her, and she whirls to face it after a long moment.)

Starfire: (warming up her starbolts) Who...are you?

(A torrent of liquid and hissing vapor floods toward her, filling the screen. Dissolve to yet another empty hall; Robin's shadow advances into view from around a bend, as does he several yards later. Overhead view of the unoccupied expanse, which is very large indeed and stops at a pair of enormous steel doors whose lock sits at least one story up from ground level. He stops here; close-up of his worried, puzzled face, "what would I do if I were back in Red X's shoes?" Before he can answer that one, though, a shrill scream from the o.c. Starfire grabs his attention.)

Robin: Starfire?

(He sets off after her, and as he does so, we see that Red X has entered the area and is standing right behind him at the door. The Boy Wonder heads back toward where he came in, followed by his stealthy opposite number, and the camera cuts to a close-up of the Titan's back.)

Red X: (from o.c.) What's the matter, kid? (Robin turns; shift to frame both.) Don't you want to play? After all, they're your toys.

(He pulls out a handful of X's and lets fly; Robin hits the floor, and they blow out a computer console behind him. Behind the thief, the massive lock begins to turn, finally clicking open and retracing upward as the doors slide away to left and right. Just inside is a tangle of security laser beams, dense enough to trip up anyone who is not a chimpanzee. Pull back slightly to put Robin's palm in frame on the floor as Red X leaps easily into the thicket, then cut to the Boy Wonder, who gets up and charges.)

(Letterbox view of this corridor; the two caped silhouettes dart this way and that among the lasers, not breaking a single one as the camera pans to follow them. Fullscreen: the chase bounces off a wall, then takes them clear of the beams and down a long, broad vertical shaft. Tilt down to show the pair plummeting toward a light source at the far bottom. As they dive farther, the camera zooms in to reveal the shimmering in more detail; it is a force field.)

(Red X fires a device from his extended palm; this sticks on the field and splits it into four quarters that retract to allow him through. Not far below is the bottom of the shaft, where he lands as the barrier seals itself again. The camera shifts to point straight up through it at the descending Robin, whose eyes pop just before he crashes into it; his face gets squashed like a kid at the window of a candy store. Any satisfaction Red X gets from maneuver is hidden behind his expressionless mask as he runs off down a hall.)

(Dissolve to this entrance, the camera pointing back toward the bottom of the shaft. Robin drops into view, having found a way past the force field, and runs after his nemesis. After a few dozen yards, though, he stops for a look around. The glare of an o.c. light being switched on draws his gaze; cut to the other side of a newly illuminated doorway in which he is standing and tilt down to a recessed stretch of black floor tiles. Robin looks down, finding it to stretch the full width of the room, then at the only other door at the far end, and behind him, Red X materializes.)

Red X: After you.

(Robin gets an elbow in the back that pushes him onto the tiles. Close-up of his grimacing, glaring face as light flares from down o.c., then pull back. A large, red X of tiles lights up, with its center at his feet, and a ceiling-mounted laser swings into position directly overhead and fires. He hurls himself away, the beam sweeping after him a bit, and ends up sprawled on a black stretch of tiles. The X reappears, centering on him again; pull back to put the laser in view as it zeroes in on him. Now Robin is off like a shot, racing for the far door while that giant set of crosshairs keeps tracking him and the shots rain down.)

(Red X jumps after Robin as if running an interference play in football-the player with the ball following one of his teammates to the end zone and letting that guy absorb the defense's pounding. Robin dashes on; cut to his perspective, approaching the now, open far door, as his foe drops into view at it. Pull back to frame both; Robin makes one last lunge.)

Red X: Thanks for the hand, kid.

(He closes the door, putting himself on the other side and leaving Robin to face that oncoming laser beam. Cut to a close-up of the Titan's panicked, terror-stricken face and fade to white as the glare washes over him.)

(Fade in to an overhead view of the area on the other side of this door. It is a large cylindrical vault with small storage bays set in the walls, and Red X is securing the entrance. A platform and computer console stand at the center of the floor, while a beam of light shines down on the setup to envelop a small object. Ground level, panning slightly to the center as the thief turns to the computer; we can now see that the object is a glass tube of reddish material floating in a suspension field.)

[Animation goof: The vault door is of a different design from the one that led out of the laser room.]

Red X: Xenothium ore.

(He enters a command, and in response a clamp extends upward from the floor and grips the tube. It is then retracted and placed in his hand.)

Red X: Enough to power the suit for a good, long time.

(Dissolve to him kneeling over a large canister. He slides one end open, revealing it to be loaded with several other tubes of this material.)

Red X: I love it when the good guy wins.

(Close-up of the tubes as he prepares to insert the one he just swiped into the last open slot, then pull back. A loud rumbling from outside distracts him; it is followed by a laser beam penetrating the vault wall around the door. As he stares in disbelief, the thick steel is incised as if it were bologna under a surgical scalpel. When the cut is complete, the entire door falls in amid a cloud of dust; this clears to show Robin holding his knife of choice, the ceiling laser, wrenched away from its guide tracks.)

Robin: You're not going to win.

(He drops the weapon and, with a roar of fury, launches a flying kick that sends Red X and his storage container bouncing off the far wall.)

Red X: Kid, you are taking life way too seriously.

(He charges on the end of this, Robin does likewise, and they go to it in earnest. Robin throws a handful of grenades; Red X bounds away just before they explode and hurls a cluster of throwing-star X's. These send Robin into a frantic dodge as they embed themselves in the wall around his head. Pulling out his fighting staff to block the last few, he braces for action and faces his enemy at the other side of the floor.)

(Red X raises the back of one fist toward him and extends the mark on it to make a four-bladed knife, then rushes at the young hero with an identical weapon in his other glove. Dodging or blocking the slashes, Robin shoves his foe back across the floor and goes up for a flying roundhouse swing that whistles just over Red X's head. They swing at each other some more until the staff finds its mark and bowls his foe over.)

(When Red X gets up, he sets one of his cross-blade weapons spinning and darts in again. This time, Robin ducks almost too late and the device throws sparks from its contact with the steel wall. More razor-sharp punches put him on the defensive for a moment; soon, though, he brandishes his staff and strikes back against the blades that now whir on both fists. After another exchange of attacks, Robin slams the sole of one boot into the marked chest and drives Red X back a considerable distance. Staff and knives lock together, and the fighters lean into each other's faces.)

Robin: Why did you steal the suit? What are you planning to do?

Red X: Whatever I want. (He flips Robin backward.) Not everybody likes to play the big villain, kid. I'm a thief. (retracts his blades) I'm not threatening your precious city, just looking out for number one. (Robin brandishes his staff.)

Robin: So you're not psychotic. You're just selfish.

Red X: (laughing derisively) Lighten up, Chuckles. (raises his hands and palms out) I'm not such a bad guy, once you get to know me.

(He fires X's from both palms; Robin deflects one, but the other cuts his legs out and he crashes onto his chin, dropping the staff. When he looks up, he sees the thief bearing down on him with a boot extended; he rolls away to dodge the stomp, then kicks Red X in the back and knocks him to the wall. As the latter hits the floor, pull back to frame his Xenothium carrier in the foreground, a short distance away. In a flash, he is on his feet and grabbing it.)

Red X: Playtime's over, kid.

(Robin pulls out a birdarang. Close-up of Red X.)

Red X: Back off, or I trip the power core.

(Tilt down slightly to waist level as he says this; he poises a finger over the main button on his belt, and it glows with a red X.)

Red X: And the core triggers the rocks. (Robin lowers his weapon.) I don't think you want that on your conscience.

Robin: (raises his birdarang again) And I don't think you want to be disintegrated.

(The explosive-toting burglar thinks this over for a long moment and does not notice the broad, shadowy figures coming through the laser room toward him. Their eyes ignite as red pinpoints; finally, he turns to look as Robin stares bug-eyed, and they are revealed in full detail. These individuals wear full-body protective suits, similar to Chang's, but with hoods that enclose the entire head. The red-eye effect is due to built-in goggles, and the tubes of breathing apparatus run from the mouth area.)

(The individual at the front of this group lifts a weapon that is of the same design as the one Chang used against Robin in the observatory. These are his men, and they were the ones who put Beast Boy, Raven, and Starfire out of commission. Red X takes a shot to the chest that lays him out, and then, as Robin tries to keep his eyes from popping out of his head, he, too, is blasted down, dropping the birdarang that has never left his hand. The suited figures move into the vault and open one storage bay after another; each holds a canister like the one Red X was filling. These are removed and handed back, from one pair of hands to another, and the bays are closed again.)

(Cut to a close-up of the semiconscious Robin and pull back slightly across the floor as he comes around. A pair of booted feet comes into view in front of him; the camera shifts to point up at the owner of said feet. As Robin stares in horror, this person holds up a lunchbox-like piece of equipment and sets it on the floor in front of him. This item has a screen on the side facing him. After the item is in place, the crew promptly moves out.)

Robin: (groaning) The Xenothium!

(Head-on view of him. Light flickers over his face as the screen, on the side of the box we cannot see right now, comes to life.)

Chang: (on the box speaker) Yes. And I do so appreciate it.

Robin: Chang!

(Head-on view of the screen, which shows Chang's face; he is in the observatory. Zoom in slightly.)

Chang: Since you two were doing the break-in, I decided to cash in. I'm sick of selling to bad boys. I'm ready to be one. And now that I finally have enough Xenothium to power my disintegrator cannon, I can be very, very bad.

(He points o.c., and the screen view pans in that direction to the tarp-covered object seen earlier. A couple of his men pull the cloths away, exposing the cannon: a long emitter angled skyward.)

Robin: I won't let you get away with this!

Chang: Oh, I think you will, because, my good little boy, I didn't just steal the ore.

(Screen pans away from him to four cylindrical glass tanks, each of which holds one of the other Titans. Cyborg's presence gives the lie to Robin's previous idea that Red X knocked him out. Beast Boy is still a bloodhound, as when he was captured, and all four are motionless.)

Chang: (from o.c.) I stole your friends. (Robin grimaces; Chang pulls the camera back to himself.) Stay out of this... (leans close) ...or I'll test my cannon on them!

(He grins broadly, leans back, and reaches up o.c. toward the camera controls. The image wavers and gives way to static before the view fades to black.)

Act Three

(Opening shot: just inside the collapsed vault door. Red X's hand stretches into view on the floor; pan to him as he stands up, groaning and rubbing his head.)

Red X: Okay. Who were the moon men?

(Light shines down from high overhead, while steel bars shoot up from the floor to closely encircle him.)

Red X: Huh?

(Pull back. He is standing on the spot where that floating tube of Xenothium ore had been, and the bars around him reach to the ceiling. The word "LOCK" is on the computer's screen. Robin steps partly into view near the camera.)

Robin: (from o.c.) Criminals. (He moves to the holding cell.) Just like you.

Red X: Come on, kid. You don't really think this little playpen can hold me.

(Robin presses a button; instantly the prisoner gets a jolt of electricity from the bars he grips. Slow pan across the pair.)

Robin: You don't even care, do you? A lowlife maniac just got his hands on enough Xenothium to disintegrate the entire city, and it's your fault!

Red X: Don't you mean our fault?

Robin: At least I'm going to do something about it. And if you cared about anything other than yourself, you'd be helping!

Red X: Sorry, kid. Some guys don't like to play the hero.

Robin: I'll be back to take you to jail.

(He strides out. Close-up of the skull-masked face, eyes narrowing in thought, then pull back. He is concentrating on that computer console, whose screen still reads "LOCK" in big red letters. Cut to an extreme close-up of the eyes and fade to black.)

(Fade in to a set of closed steel doors. They slide open, revealing the night sky beyond, and the camera tilts down to frame Jump City Bay and the Tower: we are in the observatory. Chang's cannon extends into view away from the camera.)

Chang: (from o.c.) Buildings, neighborhoods, lives.

(Cut to a side view of the weapon's barrel and tilt down to its base on the next line. Several crewmen are making final touch-ups under his watch; he stands before the tanks that hold the other four Titans.)

Chang: Countless targets just waiting to be disintegrated.

(Cut to just behind Starfire and Beast Boy. This shot reveals icicles hanging off her chin and arms; the liquid she was hit with froze her solid, and the same has been done to the others. Chang chuckles and crosses the floor to her.)

Chang: (sweetly) Tell me, pretty girl, have you ever seen something ripped apart, molecule by molecule? (slides away) It's breathtaking.

(Head-on view of her. The eyes flare to life, producing a blast that instantly thaws her head.)

Starfire: You are a bad man!

(She trains the twin beams against the tank wall, but cannot breach it. He just cups a hand to his ear, as if innocently trying to hear someone better, and steps back to her on the next line.)

Chang: Oh, if you think I'm bad now, you're going to be really impressed once I finish with your city, and move on to you. (He strokes the glass; sight gag; her head grows.)

Starfire: Your plans shall fail! Robin will-- (Gag ends.)

Chang: --Not be joining us. (turns away) Not with your lives on the line. Far too risky for a good boy like him.

Starfire: (icily) You will be surprised at the risks Robin will take.

(Loaded with Xenothium canisters, the breech of the cannon slides shut. Cut to the muzzle, on which a row of red lights winks on to indicate power, and tilt down toward the floor. Chang climbs a ladder built into the side of the weapon and sits before a control panel; as he moves a pair of levers, the entire rig pivots on its base. He takes a long sniff of the frigid air.)

Chang: Mmmm. (He locks the cannon in place.) Got a nice smell, doesn't it?

(Tilt down a bit from him, then cut to floor level; the cannon is being raised on a platform as the barrel tilts forward. Outside, we see the red-glowing muzzle's aim being fine-tuned. Pull back across the city.)

Chang: (from inside) I've spent years hiding from this cursed city. (Close-up of the muzzle, locking in place and warming up, then back to him.) Now let them hide from me. Prepare to fire!

(Robin swings into view, lifting both legs for a kick that plows the madman half off his perch, but before he falls, one foot catches a lever. The cannon shifts position and fires; pan to follow the beam, which flashes over the city and bay toward the Tower. A large chunk of the top floor vaporizes on contact, but this is not enough to absorb all the power of the shot and it continues unabated. When it does finally cease, the Tower's exposed ironwork glows with yellow heat. Chang stares incredulously, then spins toward the balcony where Robin is standing.)

Robin: You've just made a big mistake.

(The breech opens and rotates to bring a fresh fuel canister into firing position, much like the cylinder of a revolver.)

Chang: Attack!

(A laser beam and a jet of red sludge, the same stuff used on Raven, issue from somewhere below Robin. He catches sight of the two shooters, who are on a lower platform that sits directly above the frozen Titans, and drops over the edge to get at them. The jump places him directly between the pair; he immediately ducks away as the sludge man fires, and the laser man gets caught up in the mess. A flying kick knocks out the latter attacker, and with a grab at the shoulders Robin slams the former one flat.)

(He grabs the glue hose, perches on the railing, and levels it at several other henchmen who have come up across the floor. Instead of shooting directly at them, though, he directs the flow downward past them at an angle. It congeals into a ramp, which he slides down to get at them more easily. Two are knocked away, a third is relieved of his weapon, and two others feel its full brunt; Robin disarms one of them as well. Reinforcements charge.)

Starfire: Robin!

(He spins to face them and dashes in, dropping both weapons as he goes. Streams of red muck whip past him on both sides, but he continues his advance and drops the first two enemies with an uppercut and a kick. The next one backs away from the punch coming at his head, only to have the air hose from his breathing apparatus torn out. Down he goes. Next up is a glue shooter; the berserk Titan yanks out the hose that connects the nozzle to the supply on his back. In no time flat, the aggressor has been engulfed in a red morass of hardening adhesive.)

(Robin drops the free hose end, then looks up surprised. The cannon's base is rotating; Chang is back in his seat and working the controls impatiently.)

Chang: Quickly, quickly...ha!

(He takes dead aim at the Boy Wonder and energizes the weapon. The intended target fires a grappling hook straight up and lifts himself away. Laughing dementedly, Chang pulls a lever to set the muzzle tilting upward at Robin, whose eyes pop at the prospect of what is about to happen. Long overhead shot of the observatory; a beam blasts out through the dome and hurtles skyward. Inside, after it has stopped, there is a smoking hole in the structure, and the camera pulls back a bit to frame Robin, hanging just next to it on his line and still in the land of the living.)

(He swings back and forth a bit to work up some momentum, then lets go and hits a balcony running. A barrage of disintegrator fire prompts him into one of the best acrobatic displays he has ever given, but it is almost not enough to keep him ahead. The last shot throws him off balance, forcing him to grab the broken end of a railing to keep from dropping to the floor. Pull back as that huge glowing muzzle aims itself directly at him.)

Chang: Okay, good boy. Who should I destroy first? You...or your pretty friend? (The cannon is raised and angled downward.)

Robin: Starfire!

(Close-up of her, still struggling to break free of the icy crust that covers all but her head. Pull back to a long shot of the row of tanks and pan along the length of Chang's weapon, which now has her at point-blank range. His finger is poised on the firing button, but before he can end the young Tamaranean's life, something flashes across the screen and slices through the lever to which that button is attached.)

Chang: Huh?

(More objects, red throwing-star X's, pierce his control panel, sending up crackles of high-voltage electricity. A gasp from Starfire, then a close-up of Robin's hand on the broken railing. His fingers finally lose their grip and he drops screaming toward the remains of Chang's panel, but before he can hit it, something black streaks across the screen and carries him toward the far balcony. It resolves into Red X, free of the confines Robin imposed, and he tosses the hero safely onto the walkway. The unknown thief has turned against Chang and wrecked the cannon's controls, and he hangs off the protective barricade for a moment.)

Robin: I thought you didn't like to play the hero.

Red X: Doesn't mean I don't know how.

(He leaps onto the balcony, whereupon the two are beset by a storm of laser fire. Several of Chang's henchmen have gained this level and are advancing quickly. Side by side, Robin and Red X go up for flying kicks as a dove wings over the battlefield, and one after another the thugs are swiftly dispatched. In the final shot of this sequence, the reluctant allies end up back to back and then deliver a pair of roundhouse kicks that drop the last man standing against the railing.)

(Cut to a long shot of the group and tilt down past the Swiss-cheese dome to Chang, who has still not left the control seat.)

Chang: (pounds the panel) No! No! No!

(The last hit reforms a broken electrical connection, bringing part of the panel to life and re-energizing the cannon.)

Starfire: Eek!

(She pulls her head down just in time to keep from having it blown off. The burst melts a wide hole through the tank holding her, then swings off to cut a wide swath through the observatory structure. As the mechanism spins out of control, the beam angles upward through the balconies, straight toward Robin and Red X. The former runs for it, pulling the latter along.)

Robin: Look out!

(Off they go, just barely staying ahead of the destruction. Cut to a long shot of the exterior; the beam slices out a large circle, even cutting through the top of the mountain on which the facility is built. When it finally stops, the entire front half slides down, having been neatly cut away. Inside, the cannon's breech slides open and a very panicky Chang surveys the devastation, but not for long, as Robin jumps down onto the control panel. Close-up of the worried old face, then cut to the weapon's base as a punch is heard landing and he tumbles down. Red X is first to reach the platform; he is not wearing his belt.)

Red X: Time to get what I came for.

(Robin puts himself between the burglar and the Xenothium; he is soon joined by four thawed-out teammates on the next line. Beast Boy is back in human form, and Cyborg has his own cannon locked and loaded.)

Raven: Time's up.

Robin: Thanks for the help, X. (pulls out a disc) But don't think that means you can help yourself.

Red X: (holding up a palm) No problem, kid. (holds up one Xenothium tube in the other hand) This should keep me going for quite a while.

Robin: (puts the disc away) That won't do you much good without this.

(On the end of this line, he holds up Red X's missing belt, dropped or stolen, and the criminal's eyes pop as he realizes he has lost it.)

Robin: Better luck next time.

(Red X backs cautiously up from the other masked fighter. Close-up of his retreating boots, approaching the edge of the platform that hangs into space. Tilt up as he starts to lose his balance; he soon gets himself under control, however. Profile close-up.)

Red X: Not bad, kid. (Pan to the tube in his hand.) Not bad.

(Pull back. He throws the tube down at his feet, creating a small explosion. Long shot of the platform; he is thrown backward over its edge and soon disappears into the low clouds. The Titans stare after him. Fade to black.)

(Fade in to the interior of the vault. A Xenothium tube is lifted into view on the floor-mounted clamp.)

Robin: (voice over) There is good, and there is evil.

(On the second half of this, pull back to frame Raven working the controls, activating the suspension field that had originally protected the material as the clamp retracts. A new door has been installed.)

Robin: (voice over) But the line between them can be almost impossible to find.

(During this line, pan quickly away and stop at a prison corridor. Chang and his men are escorted in, under the eye of several guards and Cyborg. Cut to a pan across Jump City, stopping at the mountain slopes. Starfire slides down and is quickly joined by Beast Boy as a falcon. Resuming human form, he looks around and then back at Starfire, who shakes her head sadly: they are searching for clues as to Red X's whereabouts and coming up dry. Beast Boy scratches his chin in puzzlement. Snap to black, then tilt down to a sewer tunnel as the beltless fugitive drops into view and begins to run.)

Robin: (voice over) Does one good deed make him a hero? Am I to blame for all of it because of a single mistake?

(On the second sentence, snap to black, which resolves into the interior of a small storage locker as Robin opens it and puts the belt inside: this is in the Tower. The view blacks out when he closes the door.)

Robin: (voice over) In the end...

(Fade in to a shot of the Tower's damaged upper portion. It is now sunrise of the following morning, and a crane has been positioned on the roof for use in the repair work. Zoom in slowly.)

Robin: (voice over) ...all I really know is that the answers don't come easy.

(Cut to a close-up of him up here, lost in thought with one foot perched on a ledge, and pan slowly.)

Robin: It's supposed to be simple... (Pull back; he is at the edge of the damage.) ...but it's not.

(Fade to black.)

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