Written for the prompt "This is why we can't have nice things." from dragonofeternal. also an important question: why does no one else seem to be writing Alibaba & Judal gen shit? their friendship dynamic is pretty much fantastic, plz people join me in appreciating it :D

Judal cackles as Alibaba's ball plops perfectly into the floating cup. The guy running the game scratches his head, probably confused by how it actually happened. Fucking jacked up carnival games keeping people from winning the good shit are no match for him, though! They're not protected from reality altering magic.

"Oh, I want that one," Alibaba says, point at a large stuffed animal. It looks like some sort of rainbow mix of a couple random animals, but whatever. He never said Alibaba had good taste.

They walk off triumphantly, Alibaba hugging it the whole way to the car. "You know, I always thought I was just bad at these, but apparently they were rigged the whole time!"

"You still suck," Judal informs him. "I'm the one making it actually happen."

"Yeah, but I'm still throwing things."

"You have shitty aim! Maybe you should try harder not to suck at everything," Judal says, laughing as he unlocks the car. For some dumb reason, Alibaba trusted him with the car keys. What a moron.

Alibaba shoves his newest bounty in the trunk with the rest of their winnings. It's a pretty sweet gig so far, and as long as they don't make itoo/i much noise about it, they shouldn't get caught. If they can keep it up, Judal plans on using Alibaba for winning better shit than just stuffed animals, but for now, it'll do. He needs the practice.

He frowns. "I don't suck! I've been doing well," Alibaba says defensively, but Judal laughs at him.

"You're giving yourself too much credit," he says, shrugging. "Come on, let's go back and win some more crappy toys."

Alibaba keeps his mouth shut the rest of the way back into the carnival, but he doesn't look happy about it. Whatever, not his problem! Some glittery jewelry catches Judal's eye, and he drags Alibaba over to check it out. "This is new! We should get some of it."

"I dunno, you don't seem to think I can do it."

"Don't be a chicken! I want something besides stupid stuffed animals," Judal snaps.

Alibaba rolls his eyes dramatically. "It's not like you're gonna be keeping anything. They're mine!"

What the fuck is he talking about? Judal whirls on him angrily, ready to remind him why they're here. "I made all of this happen! You're only getting the dumb ones that I don't like!"

"Nuh uh! I won them fair and square!"

Judal laughs. "It's not fair and square if you're cheating. 'Look at me, I'm Alibaba and I have no idea what words mean!'"

Alibaba shoves him in the shoulder and Judal goes sprawling into the booth behind them, knocking things over as he tries to regain his balance. "Hey, fuck you! I don't need your stupid face to win shit! I can do it on my own," Judal yells, only to find a heavy hand on his shoulder. "Hey-"

"Did I hear you boys say you were cheating?" asks a very stern looking employee. Judal swallows thickly; this guy could definitely snap his bones just from looking at him.

"Uh. No?" he answers dumbly.

"It's just a magic trick!" Alibaba supplies helpfully, and Judal resists the urge to punch him in the face - mainly because he's still being held in place.

The employee looks between the two of them suspiciously while Judal tries to make himself look as innocent as possible. He's never been very good at getting himself out of bad situations once he's in them. It's better to just avoid them in the first place, but here he is. Alibaba is on his fucking own for making it worse, though.

He looks them up and down once more before his expression turns sour. Fuck. "Cheating of any kind is not tolerated here. I don't care if you're calling it a 'trick.' That doesn't change what it is."

Alibaba's face falls. "Uh hahaha, yeah, but it's not ireally/i cheating-"

"Both you are banned from the festival for the immediate future," he says firmly. "Come with me. I will escort you out."

"This is bullshit!" Judal snaps, but the angry glare he gets makes him think better of complaining anymore. He wants to make it out of here without getting beaten up by some carnival thug, thank you very much.

Alibaba kicks the ground as they make their way back to the car. "This is why we can't have nice things," he whines, and Judal smacks him upside the head.

"We were doing fine until you had to complain!" Judal shoots back.

"No way! You're the one who started calling it cheating!" he points out, and Judal's mouth snaps shut before he can think of a retort. Damn it. How dare Alibaba actually be sort of right? He's not gonna admit to that.

At least he still has the car keys. "You pushed me into something! Otherwise no one would have noticed us," he decides on.

Alibaba groans. "Whatever, I guess we can never go to the carnival again…"

"So what? It's dumb anyway!" Judal says, trying to hide his own disappointment. It's not like he ireally/i wanted to go back or anything.

He fishes around in his pockets, looking for keys that he won't be able to find, while Judal leans against the car casually. He'll just let Alibaba feel stupid for awhile, and then maybe give them back if he begs.

"Hey Judal, have you seen my keys? I hope I didn't drop them somewhere in there," Alibaba ponders, concerned.

Judal twirls them around a finger. "These keys? You told me to carry them hours ago," he says, smirking. "Why, did you need them or something?"

Alibaba reaches out for them only to have Judal snatch them away. "Hey! Give those back!"

He cackles. "You've been so ungrateful. Maybe I'll keep them for myself."

"You don't even have a driver's license," he whines, still unsuccessfully trying to steal the keys back from Judal.

"I still know how to drive," he says defensively, hopping out of Alibaba's reach. "Beg for them! Beg for my mercy!"

"I'll give you whatever stuffed animal you want! Please don't crash my car!" Alibaba pleads, and Judal laughs at him. "I mean it!"

"Gonna admit this was all your fault?"

Alibaba looks thoughtful before shaking his head. "I think we're both to blame for this."

Judal groans loudly. "Leave it to you to try to make this fair," he gripes, tossing the keys at Alibaba. At least his reflexes still suck and he nearly drops them instead of catching them gracefully. "Take us home, Alibooba."

"I really don't like that nickname."

"I really don't care," Judal says, grinning. Today may have been a bust, but at least now he knows something: find someone new to team up with to scam the carnies. Maybe Hakuryuu or Kouha would be up to it...