A/N: I'm a terrible person, I know. So long between updates. And on Wednesday you guys got Author Alerts and got all excited only to say "WTF? If? Not Breakroom? Boo!" …Then again, I may be giving myself too much credit.

Buzzword? This time, well, how about Umbrella? Or popcorn? I smell a double-points loophole!

Notes to reviewers, as always, at the end.


Somewhere, Goku is coated to the elbows in egg dye, Hakkai is mixing chocolate without a spoon, and Gojyo sports bunny ears, a fluffy tail, and very little else.

Sanzo stumbles backward, slams the door, and tries the next one.

Somewhere, Nii is giggling like a little girl.

On a more removed side of things, Gojyo is being reprimanded for wiggling his ass.

"The fuckin' tail is gone, cockroach," Sanzo snarls, twitching bodily as his hand gropes for gun or harisen, whichever comes first.

Gojyo frowns, but stops. He casts periodic glances over his shoulder, though, muttering and obviously disquieted. Goku swipes at the air behind Gojyo's back and the redhead jumps at the movement in his peripheral vision. When the culprit registers, Gojyo growls menacingly, tensing to tackle.

Hakkai unlocks the apartment door, lets Sanzo in, and freezes the other two with a chuckle and "Shall I leave you two outside until you've reconciled your differences?"

"No difference here!" Goku cries, and Gojyo readily agrees.

"Yeah. Practically twins, us," Gojyo adds, and the two barrel through the door with such force that only Hakkai's instincts and experience save him from being flattened against the wall.

Goku grins a bit, laughing to himself while he rummages through the pantry's contents.

"Uh oh," Gojyo intones, nudging Sanzo and Hakkai with his elbows. "Saru's lost it."

"Did not!" Goku responds, flourishing a baguette that had not been there that morning. "I've got it right here." He gives them all a cheesy smile and tears into the bag with his teeth. "Was just thinkin' we'd be screwed if we did a bongo run."

The other three stare at Goku for a long moment, until Sanzo breaks it by huffing, lighting a cigarette, and moving to plop down on the couch. Gojyo throws his hand over his head, saying, "Whoosh."

"Nono," Goku declares, pressing the matter, "You know this. Like when you're trying to run and your legs spin and you hover in the air for a few seconds? That's a bongo run."

Gojyo looks down, tests his knees, and resumes staring at Goku as if the boy had a zit the size of Maine on his forehead. And was wondering if it was really a zit or if chakras are contagious. (Which actually poses a bit of a question, seeing as once the chakra becomes contagious, it's also quite lethal to the original host. Knowing this, Gojyo would be one of the first in line to receive the vaccine.)

Goku turns to Hakkai. "You know what I'm talking about, don't you?"

Hakkai shrugs. "I'm sorry, Goku, but I don't think I've ever had the experience. I would think I'd remember it if I had," he adds, smiling a bit helplessly.

In a final, vaguely desperate ploy, Goku hops over the back of the couch and lands next to Sanzo. "You. Were a bird. And I was a bunny. And Homura, he was…was a wolf or something. You remember, we all did bongo runs. There were even sound effects!"

Sanzo, quite thoroughly irked, shoves Goku away from his side of the couch. "Yeah. Yes. So? What were you trying to prove?"

Goku deflates. If one listens hard enough, one can hear the air rushing away. "Only that it exists. An' that's why I was laughing." Goku realizes belatedly that he never let go of the bread. He takes a big bite of crust and rips it from the rest with a bit of vigorous tugging.

Gojyo takes a seat on the other couch and looks pointedly at Sanzo. "Bum a light?"

Sanzo frowns, but Gojyo's eyes speak of thousands of bummed lights and lit bums. There is no reason to argue here, so he pitches the lighter at Gojyo and turns away. Gojyo smiles, baring all of his teeth, and lights up. "No 'ffense, Goku," he murmurs, "but what a hell of a waste of time. Why'd you ever wanna run like that?"

Goku frowns into his bread, chewing thoughtfully. He takes another bite. And another. Hakkai comes to sit next to Gojyo, and Goku takes another bite of bread. When the baguette is finished off, Goku shakes his shirt to dislodge the crumbs and answers, "Dunno. Author made me?"

Gojyo laughs, and Hakkai does as well. "You have to admit, it's an odd contrivance," says Hakkai. "Does the pause serve any purpose?"

"Like those monologues in SailorMoon?" interjects Gojyo. "Gratuitous panty shot, right?"

Goku makes a face. "No. You're such a freakin' pervert. I…I guess it's comedic or somethin'."

"Animator laziness, if it's canon," mutters Sanzo, tipping ash into the ashtray. "Art mirrors life, and fans are rip-off artists."

"Beautiful sentiment, I'm sure," Hakkai responds, grinning a little. "But how does that explain, well, the monologues in SailorMoon? I'm sure it's just as much work to animate all of those little sparkles, perhaps even more."

"They just wanna draw tee-an'-ay," Gojyo declares, putting his foot up on the coffee table. "And it translates over. Or like, there's all that stuff they gotta get into the story so you set up a hugeantic, ginormic monologue to get it all in."

"And nobody but no-one interrupts," Hakkai continues.

"Even if they're gettin' cramps from standin' there with their weapons or tied to a tree or somethin' for twenty minutes straight!" Goku finishes. "An' then, just to screw 'em over, the good guy shows up and the villain who's been yammering on tries to bongo run and can't get away in time."

Gojyo snorts, drawing a pleased little circle in the air with his cigarette. He takes a drag, rubs it out in Sanzo's ashtray, and stares with mild wonder at the surviving stick said monk has been nursing for longer.

"Nah, man," Goku continues, on a roll, "what really gets me is that whenever somebody says something important, you gotta repeat it. And then sit there for five minutes while main-character-bigshot talks to himself about it. I mean the major angst in the middle of what could be a real good fight. I've sat for the majority of my life while one of you guys has a kitten over some epiphany brick droppin' from the sky."

"Did you come up with that one all by yourself?" asks Gojyo, leering enough to insinuate a noogie without actually wasting energy.

Goku ignores the bait. "Catch as Newton can." He grins at the collective wince as the gravity pun sets in. "But yeah. I mean, sometimes that's worse than breaking character, you know? Because someone's going on and on and on over a hangnail or some Sue being their long-lost sister or worse, having little sex-memories."

"Ah," Hakkai agrees, "there are many things that could be better than bouncing from battlefield to bedroom every paragraph."

"What, like remaining in the bedroom?" Sanzo quips, finally killing his own cigarette.

The leer rises again before Hakkai's watchful heel to Gojyo's instep can stop it. "Aw, it all depends on who you're with, San-chan," Gojyo teases, yelping when Hakkai's heel lands a second too late and harder than it had been meant.

"More like who's writing," Goku cuts in, rolling his eyes. "I'd rather be written into a three-foot box by someone good than have the best sex of my life thanks to Madam Third-Grade-Grammar and Sir Spells-Like-Shit."

"You had better take that one back, or they'll hear," says Gojyo conspiratorially, glancing with mock paranoia at the corners of the room. "'Cause if someone real good puts you in a box, it's gonna be hell and you're gonna feel every last bit of it." He pauses, then giggles. "Although I'd really like to see Sir Spells-Like-Shit's coat of arms."

"Thwarting spell-checks across the land," Goku obliges wryly. "Does he tilt at dictionaries?"

"Dunno, you made him up," Gojyo responds, leaning against the armrest and crossing his legs. "And you've gotta stop whatever you just did because that was more Hakkai than that guy." He jerks his thumb at the man sitting next to him and Hakkai grabs it, twisting just enough to pinch.

"Indeed," he agrees, and Goku grins at him. "Because we all know you would never be able to survive were there two of me."


Scary prospect, isn't it?

Snowyheart: Eeh, also a scary prospect. But I'm glad this has gone as long as it has. I have fun.

D-chan: Hooray indeed! I'm glad I induced sparkles. Hee.

Nightengale13: Yes, an opportunity missed (3x10) but one I'd rather not exploit. That's some scary stuff. Kenren got mad at Goku-chan for playing the flush game. Goku-chan glued him to the couch. That was prettymuch the extent of it. Sanzo's birthday is...in late November. 19th or something like that.

Blades of Ice: Points! OMG what a mental image.

Hakkai'sHerFavorite: Points! Lol! Nice buzzword yourself. Rather frightening, but there you go.

Joonie: Oh, Doku's just secretive because Sanzo wouldn't be happy about it - he's got an innate, characterised distrust of the man, especially after knowing about all of the slashfic involving Goku and Homura. Well, sanzo -will- have his protective tendencies.

Rune: Points, and I nearly bit through my tongue. Oh, wow. XD

Narrizan: Hee, I got your e-mail about posting a fic on EftW. I swear I'll get around to reading it...someday. XP

Asian-Orange: Yes, I thought I'd give you the Goku-as-Marilyn image to sit on. XD And no, Kenren was glued to a -couch-. Funny enough, there's a big difference. Meep meep!

Onezumie: Points! Oh dear! Doom!

LadyQueensCove: o.O; BAD. Points. Bad points. Ooh. Bad.

Jadesword: Points. Scary. XD Can't stop laughing.

Akisawana: Nice to meet you - and creative use of buzzword! Points! Steal the bunny. Steal the bunny! And if you do anything TELL ME!

Madame Maya: Nice to meet you too! Yes, Goku-chan did the glomping. Goku-chan does all the glomping. As to your fiction, please be patient. I've got a full plate, but I'll try to get to it soon. Don't take my characterisation as the iron rule, though. XP I make it up as I go.

Sparrow319: Points. XD I did like bringing back threads of the Valentine's chapter. This one was kind of shorter and more like...well...a throwback to the very first chapter. And for that I do like it. Eeh.