Chapter 5: Brother's Keeper

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         The team had been waiting a few hours as the other three heroes worked on their two new guests. Miss.Marian was stress baking cookies, helped by Beast Boy. Blue Beetle and Superboy were still confused about the necklace. Artemis and Kid Flash looked like they didn't even care. 

        That slightly pissed off Beetle. Anyone would have broken down if they saw how those two were treated. Even Batman seemed ready to murder the ones that did this to them. Those that don't care are just heartless. He sympathized with them as his best friend had an abusive step-father.

          Nightwing and Aqualad walked into the room. They all saw them and went over, concerned for the two.

         ''Are they okay,'' Ma'gann asked.

         ''They're going to be fine,'' Aqualad told them. ''But there is a lot more to them. Third degree burns, broken ribs, concussions, large gashes on their bodies, cuts, bruises, and some nerve damage.''

         ''Whoever did this is about as heartless as you can get,'' Conner growled.

         ''They're kids, no one should have to go through that,'' Ma'gann said.

         They were about to say more, but a giant scream shook the entire mountain. Nightwing and Aqualad both locked eyes, knowing it wasn't good. They both raced back to the infirmary, seeing Batman trying to help the kid they just saved. They waved the other team member away so they didn't scare him more.

        Siren had woken up, and panicked when he saw the white room. He was backing away from the three heroes, completely terrified of them. 

         ''G..go away,'' he freaked. ''L...leave alone, p...please.''

        ''Everything's okay, now,'' Kaldur told him. ''We're not going to hurt you.''

        '''re lying,'' Siren stuttered. ''S...someone's g...going to c...come in to t...torture us again.''

         ''You're safe here,'' Nightwing tries. ''We are heroes, we're going to protect you from those people.''

         ''P...please,'' Siren pleaded. ''Just g...go a...away. I d...didn't do a...anything.''

        He started to hyperventilate as he slid down the wall, crying his eyes out. He held his head as his fear took over.

          ''L...let me o...out of,'' he yelled. ''S...stop, p...please.''

         ''Calm down, breath, just breath,'' Batman instructed, but it didn't help very much.

           ''I...i'm not g...going b...back,'' Siren continued to yell. ''I d...didn't anything. L...leave me a...alone. G...go a...away.''

          ''He's having a panic attack,'' Batman said.

          ''Monster. Freak. Scum. Weirdo. Not worth love. Just die.''

         The words, the insults, repeated in his head. Everything he had always been told that he was while with them. He didn't trust that he was finally free.

         ''Dear gods,'' a voice said, making them jump.

          Phantom had finally woken up. He saw his brother panicking in the corner. He jumped off the bed and pushed past the heroes. He bent down, next to him.

         ''Little brother, it's me, please calm down,'' he comforted him. ''We're together again, and you're safe now. We're no longer in that place.''

          Siren looked up at his brother, the tears streaming down their faces. He fell into his arms, crying his eyes out. Phantom ran his hand through his hair, continuously telling him that they were safe now.

          ''M...make it st...stop, p...please,'' Siren sobbed.

          ''You're safe now,'' Phantom assured. ''I'm here for you. We will never be separated again, I promise. We will always be together, I swear.''

          Siren and Phantom looked at the heroes. Phantom's grip on his brother got tighter, wanting to protect him.

         ''W...who are th...they,'' Siren asked.

         ''I am Nightwing,'' the former Boy Wonder introduced. ''This is my friend, Aqualad, and my mentor, Batman. We're all heroes, so you two are safe here.''

        ''Who did this to you,'' Kaldur asked. ''Where were your parents?''

        ''W...with the GIW s...scientists,'' Siren stuttered. ''Th...they t...tortured us. They k...killed our s...sister and f...friends to get us.''

         ''Why were you taken prisoner,'' Batman questioned.

         ''They believe that we're threats because we aren't human,'' Phantom explained, wiping the tears from his eyes. ''We got our powers from a lab experiment that fused our DNA with magical energy. It made me a halfa, half human and half ghost. My brother's a siren, having powers over sound.''

        ''How long were you there,'' Kaldur asked.

        ''Four years,'' Phantom admitted.

          ''Can you tell us your name's,'' Nightwing requested.

         ''I c...called m...myself Gold Siren,'' Siren stuttered. '' likes P...Phantom.''

         ''We were our town's local heroes,'' Phantom said. ''But after the Disasteroid, everything fell apart.''

         ''That was you two,'' Kaldur gasped, and they nodded.

        ''Even a...after s...saving the, they st...still s...saw us as th...threats,'' Siren sobbed. ''J...just b...because we a...aren't h...human d...doesn't mean w...we d...don't feel.''

       ''We were captured and treated like lab rats,'' Phantom says, crying. ''My form was not fit for their equipment, so they used electrical torture. They didn't use pain killers because they thought that we couldn't feel pain. We did. Every cut, every stab, every zap, every punch, kick, strangle, and break. We. Felt. It. ALL.''

         The three were shocked and heartbroken. The two teens in front of them were just so broken. 

         ''The only hope we had were each other,'' Phantom says.

         ''Th...they put us in c...cells next each o...other to m...make t...the torture w...worse,'' Siren said. ''B...but as l...long as w...we had e...each o...other, they c...couldn't b...break us.''

          ''You two really care for each other, don't you,'' Nightwing asks.

         ''I wasn't kidding when I said that we were all we had,'' Phantom said. ''With everything we've gone through, we've always stuck by each other. Our adoption, being ignored, bullies, the accident, and especially now.''

        ''Adopted,'' Batman asked, beginning to wonder about something.

         Siren nodded. ''B...but th...they never e...even cared f...for us. O...our sister w...would the love us. A...all th...they did w...was use us c...clean up th...their lab.''

          ''They were always so busy with their 'work' that they never noticed us,'' Phantom said. ''Always forgotten on our birthday. Having to spend Christmas listening to them argue about Santa. It was never our home.''

          ''We'll leave you two to get some rest,'' Batman says.

         With that the three left the infirmary. Phantom helped Siren back onto his feet. They both sat on a bed, just looking at each other.

         '' it r...really over, Danny,'' Siren asked.

         ''It is, White,'' Phantom responded. ''It finally is.''


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