Appeasement
By Wc101

Authors Notes - My first Ani-fic in a while, and as you can probably guess, it's a UC pairing. Namely, Marco/Rachel. With a bit of Jake/Cassie in the background. Also, this is a response to the anirarepair Alphabet challenge, so all of the "must have" words are underlined. Also, let's say that the Animorphs are around... 16 and a half in this fic. Kay? Enjoy!


My name is Marco.
And I was one angry little boy. Being dragged through a crowded mall by my so called "Best Friend" to meet his girlfriend and cousin was not how I envisioned my Saturday. Especially when his cousin happens to be the blond goddess slash amazon warrior known as Rachel. Or as I like to call her, Xena: Warrior Princess.
"Stop being such a baby, Marco." Jake said, continuing to pull me. I couldn't do much to resist, seeing as Jake was about a head taller than I was.
"I still don't see why you had to drag me here." I grumbled.
"Because you're hot for Rachel." Jake said with a grin. "You'll have to ask her out eventually." he said.
"No I don't." I said, and tried to pull away. He grabbed my shoulder.
"Come on, Marco. You'll feel better." He said. I ignored him. He grinned again. "You're pathetic. You know that? Even I had the guts to ask Cassie out." He said. That did it.
"Fine, Jake. I'll do it under one condition. If she says no, you will NEVER bring it up again... and unless she's in a bad mood." Which is always, I added silently. Jake smiled, and patted me on the back.
"Besides, what's the worst that could happen?" Jake asked. It was rhetorical. I decided to answer anyway.
"Well, she could say no, which would crush my heart into a thin paste. Then she could tell her bird-lover about it, and hold me down while Tobias vents his frustration by pecking me to death." I said. Jake wrinkled his nose in a "That'll never happen" way.
"What will happen, most likely, is that she'll either refuse you immediately, or accept reluctantly." Jake said. I rolled my eyes. The boy was a moron. He didn't even know his own cousin. She lived to see me in pain.
"Thanks, Jake. That made me feel much better." I said sarcastically.
"I was just joking. I'm sure she'll say yes." Jake said confidently.
"You just keep thinking that." I said, and ducked into the men's rest room. I pulled my switch-blade comb out of my pocket, and started to slick back my hair. It was finally getting long enough for me to do that.
"You look fine, Marco. Just go get it over with." Jake said. I looked fine? Well sure, that was a given. But what I felt like, was like I was a Volkswagen Beetle that had run out of gas on the railroad tracks. And Rachel was the train. Coming closer... the sound was deafening... "MARCO!" I snapped out of it, and spun around to face him.
"Sorry. Just day dreaming." I said, and shook my head a few times. I spread my arms. "How do I look?" I asked. Jake gave me a thumbs up. I guess the guy wasn't a complete dork all of the time. I walked out of the bathroom with Jake right behind me, and over to the book store where Cassie and Rachel were waiting for us. "Jake?" I asked before they saw us.
"Hm?"
"Can I borrow a few bucks? You know, in case she says yes?" I asked.
"Sure." He said, and slipped me a couple of twenties.
"It's about time!" Rachel said irritably. She stomped over to us, with Cassie following her.
"Nice to see you too, Xena." I grumbled. Jake kissed Cassie lightly on the lips. Somehow, I just know he did it to spite me.
"Now Jake, perhaps you'd like to tell me why you made me come down here on Saturday morning, when I could be at home, sleeping?" Rachel asked, tapping her foot.
"Well actually, I, uh, well, um," I began. Jake jabbed me in the side with his elbow.
"Do it!" He hissed. I sighed.
"Rachel? Do you wanna catch a movie sometime? Or maybe dinner?" I asked, watching her facial expression very carefully. She smirked broadly, and crossed her arms over her chest.
"Are you asking me out?" She asked. Bitch. She knew damn well what I was doing.
"Yes or no?" I asked. She put a hand up to her chin, and looked up, like she was thinking.
"Hmm....Nope. Not interested." She said, almost mockingly. I could literally feel my heart tearing apart. I lowered my head, sighing deeply. Jake and Cassie sighed too. Jake put a hand on my shoulder. I shrugged it off.
"I'm going home." I said, and walked away. Alone.

***


"Are you going to be okay, Marco?" My dad asked, as he pressed one of his hands against my forehead.
"I'll be fine by tomorrow..." I said with a cough. It was the Monday after Rachel had shot me down. I felt like I'd had a close encounter with the quills from a porcupine. Or a cactus. Whichever hurts worse. My head hurt, my stomach hurt, my legs had cramps, I was stuffed up, I was sneezing, and I was coughing. Being sick sucks.
"I'll call the school." Dad said, and picked up the phone. "Hello? Yes, my son Marco _______ will be absent today." A short pause. "An illness of some kind. Probably just a cold. Uh-huh. Thank you very much." He hung up the phone and looked at me. "You're all set Give me a call at work if you need anything, okay?"
"Sure thing, Big guy." I said, giving a slight smile. He smiled back, and left for work. I sighed, and laid in bed for a few minutes, then got up and walked downstairs. I laid on the couch, and flipped through the tv stations. Monday morning television. Blah. I yawned, and drifted back off to sleep.

***


TAP! TAP! TAP!
My eyes snapped open. I looked at the clock mounted over the kitchen sink immediately. Three o'clock. Damn. I slept for eight full hours. I looked over to find the source of the tapping. Over here, Marco. > It was bird-boy.
"What do you want?!" I replied grumpily. Damn bird had woken me up. I was having a good dream about Rachel.
Jake sent me. Where were you yesterday? We had a meeting. > Tobias said. Shit. We did have a meeting yesterday. I shrugged. It wasn't my fault I got sick.
"I'm sick." I said simply. It was the truth.
And you didn't think of morphing to get rid of the virus? > Tobias asked. Whoops. Eh, it doesn't matter. Hurry up and morph. The others are waiting. > Tobias said.
"Tell the others that I'll be there in a few minutes. I need to grab a shower." I said.
Jake won't like that. > Tobias said.
"And?" I asked.
You don't need a shower. > He said. I swear, I had to restrain myself from walking over to the window, and slamming his little bird head in the shutter. I just walked upstairs. I guess he flew off, because that's the last that I heard from him. I decided to skip the shower, and grabbed the soap from the soap dish. I turned on the water. I worked the soap in my hands until I had formed a rich lather, and proceeded to wash my face. After I was done, I dried off and left a note for Dad, in case he came home early. I morphed to Osprey, and flew out.

***


"Please?" I asked for the hundredth time. I don't know. Ever since the meeting, I just couldn't stop pestering Rachel. Maybe for some kind of revenge. I had just been following her around town, wherever she went, asking her out repeatedly.
"For the last time NO!" She screamed.
"Pleeeeeease? Just one date!" I pleaded. She spun around, and grabbed my shoulders.
"You're driving me insane." She said.
"I'm Marco. Driving women crazy is my profession. Now, just one date. Please?" I asked again. I was not expecting what happened next. Especially not after the meeting earlier in the afternoon, which had been a giant dud. No Yeerk activity. Yay. It was basically just a get-together. A get together with Rachel and Jake getting on my case about getting sick.
"If I say yes, will you leave me alone?" She asked. I stood still.
"Mmhmm." I said.
"Fine. Where do you want to go?" She asked. Was this some kind of joke?
"Wait, so this means you're going out with me? As in, a date?" I asked.
"Yes and yes. Now hurry up and let's get this over with." She said. I smiled, and took her hand in mine. We walked for a while, before coming to a movie theater. I grinned, and bought us tickets. "What are we going to see?" She asked, seemingly in a better mood.
"You'll love it. Trust me." I said, and walked her into the theater. The only occupied seats were taken by a couple sitting in the back, and to the far right. I gripped Rachel's hand, and led her down the isle.
"Hey hey hey! Why are you acting so.... so... zealous?" Rachel asked.
"Zealous? I'm surprised you even know what that word means." I said. She shrugged, and sat down in a seat.
"I get bored in english. Sometimes I just look through the dictionary for the entire period. Did you know that the state of New York has two million more people than the entire population on Canada?" She asked.
"Uh...no. I didn't." I said, sitting next to her. Just then, the rating for the movie came up on the screen. Rachel stared at it, then looked back at me.
"For your sake, that had better stand for xylophone." She said.
"Ahaha.... you're a funny girl..." I said. She grabbed my index finger, and bent it back painfully.
"I'm so not kidding." She said, glaring at me. I gulped.
"Excuse me," A male voice said. I looked to my side, where a very large security officer was looking down at us. "Can I see some ID?" He asked, holding out his hand. I reached into my wallet, and pulled out my ID card. I handed it to him. He looked at it for a second. "Kid, how stupid are you? You know this movie is for adults only." The guard said.
"Rachel? When I count to three, run for it." I whispered.
"You're gonna have to come with me, so we can call your parents." The guard continued.
"One...."
"Hello? Are you deaf?" He prodded.
"Two..." The guard was getting mad now. He grabbed my by the wrist, which just ticked me off. "Three!" I yelled, and pulled my arm away. Rachel giggled slightly, and started jumping over the theater seats. The guard mumbled something into his radio, and proceeded to chase us. "Split up!" I yelled. Rachel nodded, and headed toward the east exit. I headed toward the west. The guard decided to chase me.
"Come back here, kid!" The guard yelled.
"Bite me!" I yelled as I ran. I saw Rachel escape out the door to the theater. Good. Now all I had to do was....
"Where do you think you're going?" A feminine voice countered. I ran straight into her, and backed up. I was trapped! The guy behind me, the woman in front of me. The woman thrusted her arms out, grasping me by the shoulders. This is going to be fun to explain to dad, I thought. Then, I was free! The woman collapsed, to reveal Rachel standing behind her. With a crowbar in her hands. I didn't say anything. I just grabbed her, and ran out with her. I didn't speak until we were a few blocks down from the theater.
"Wow... psycho female..." I said, glancing at the crowbar. She smirked.
"Hey, no one messes up my date." Rachel said with a smile.
"Wait.... you're not mad?" I asked, confused.
"Mad? Of course not! That was a rush! I'd go out with you a million times if all the dates were that exciting!" She said.
"So... will you?" I asked. She smirked again.
"I think it's a definite possibility." She said, and kissed me. This was it. The moment I had been waiting for since I figured out that Rachel didn't have cooties. And what did I do? I handled myself well. I placed my hands on her hips, and kissed her back. I could have stayed that way forever, but she broke it after a few seconds. "See you later." She called.
"Bye....Rachel..." I said, as she walked down the evening road.