Namine looked up from her sketch pad and watched Roxas hang his keys on the little hook beside the door. He poured out a mug of coffee before sitting across from her. They sat in silence for a while, Roxas sitting motionless so the girl could draw him like always.
"Namie?" he asked, after a few moments, and she blinked.
"Hm?" she responded, drawing the shadow of his coffee mug against the grain of the wooden table. She picked up her own mug and took a long sip.
"What does the word 'akuroku' mean?" Namine choked on her coffee, and the boy stood up, slapping her on the back. "Namie, are you OK?"
"Um, fine," the blonde girl said, flashing a smile. "Just breathed while I was drinking. What did you say?"
"Some girls saw me and Axel walking out of the theatre-" -Roxas stopped to glare, because his girlfrend had point-blank refused to go with him and he'd had to settle for Mr. Pyromaniac- "-and then this group of girls saw us and started that stupid fangirly squeal, you know, the one that Kairi does when she sees Demyx and Zexion? And then a couple of them shouted 'akuroku'. Do you know what it means?"
"Probably a fangirl thing. Ask Kai," Namine added.
"Kairi?" The redhead looked at Roxas, smiling brightly.
"Hey, Roxie," she said hyperly, and the thought going through Roxas' head was: Please God tell me she's not been hanging with Selphie and Yuffie again...
"I came to ask you something," he said carefully, and she tilted her head slightly.
"Really? What?" she asked.
"Well, do you know what the word 'akuroku' means?" the blonde asked her, and she promptly burst out laughing and was unable to speak for breathlessness for about half an hour, so Roxas left to find one of his other fangirl friends.
He knocked on the door to Selphie and Yuffie's apartment and it was answered it straight away by the young and perpetually hyper ninja.
"Hi, Roxie," she said cheerfully, waving, and Selphie appeared behind her.
"Who is it?" she asked, trying to see over Yuffie's head.
"Roxas," she stated. "What is it?" she added, turning back to the boy.
"Can you tell me what the word 'akuroku' means? Because Namine and Kairi don't know," he said, frowning, and Yuffie looked at the girl behind her before they started sniggering. It broke out into real fangirl giggles.
"Actually, I'm not sure. You should probably ask Olette," Selphie said frimly, before slamming the door in Roxas' face.
"Roxas? Is something wrong?" the brunette asked immediately, welcoming him into the house and sitting him on a couch before going to prepare some tea.
"Actually, I'm not staying long, I just need to ask something," he called, and she came back into the living room to sit across from him.
"What?" she asked, giving him a puzzled look.
"OK, for some reason the other girls laughed at this, so brace yourself. What does 'akuroku' mean?" Olette smiled, then started giggling silently. "What's so funny?"
"It's kind of a private joke between us girls. Are you sure you've asked everyone?" Olette said, regaining her composure, and the blonde nodded. "OK. Try Riku. He's a fanboy. If he can't tell you, go to Demyx. Then Sora. Don't ask Axel."
"Why does Riku being a fanboy make a difference..?" Roxas asked, and the green-eyed girl just shook her head, ushering him to the door.
"Whatever you do, just don't ask Axel."
Roxas hesitated before knocking on the door to Riku's apartment. Sora's car was out in the parking lot, and it was common knowledge...
"Hey bro," Sora said, beaming, his hair more messy than usual and a sulky Riku standing behind him, arms wrapped round the smaller boy's waist. Roxas sniggered.
"Not interrupting anything?" he asked, and Sora blushed, turning to bury his face in Riku's chest. The older boy just looked at him flatly.
"What do you want?" he asked darkly, and Roxas decided not to push it.
"Olette told me to come ask you what 'akuroku' means," he said, getting right to the point, and Riku smirked. The two noticed Sora half-giggling.
"Seriously? Have you asked all the other girls?" he said, and Roxas nodded, exhasperated. "So Olette sent you to a fanboy. Pitiful. Ask Demyx. We're busy." The door slammed and Roxas decided to tease Sora later, to get back at them. Riku had told him before, brooding Sora was no fun. So he went to find Demyx.
In the square, somebody was sitting under the fountain and playing a sitar. The tune seemed to go with the water, or maybe it was the other way around.
"If Olette's sending you round the fanboys, why not Riku?" Demyx asked distractedly as he tuned the sitar slightly. Roxas sighed, running a hand through his hair.
"I already did," he said. "Just tell me, what does 'akuroku' mean?" Demyx looked up sharply, a smile ghosting his lips.
"'Akuroku'?" he repeated, the edges of his lips threatening to curve up at any moment. "Why don't you just ask Axel?"
"Olette told me not to," Roxas said, puzzled, and Demyx smiled finally, looking back at his sitar.
"Hm. Ask Zexion. He's at our apartment."
"Uh... Zexion?" Roxas asked tentatively, knocking on the door lightly. He really didn't want to confront the man, to tell the truth. He was a little bit scary... The door opened and Zexion glared at Roxas.
"'Aku' is the shortened version of Axel's Japanese name, just as 'Roku' is yours. In most fandoms, placing two names one after the other without a space or with a slash sign suggests a romantic pairing." The door closed and Roxas stood for a few minutes, trying to understand what Zexion meant. He finally gave up and went to find his last hope.
"Huh? I thought Zexion told you..?" the redhead said, looking reluctant. "Demyx phoned Zexion and told him to tell you and then Demyx phoned me to tell me that he'd told Zex to tell you and that now you should know," he said, and Roxas shook his head wildly.
"What does that even mean?" he muttered, and Axel sighed.
"Roxas, those girls thought we were gay. And together."
"Namie?" The blonde looked up from hr drawing again and smiled at her boyfriend. "You know what?"
"Hm?" she said, raising an eyebrow.
"Next time, just get Axel to tell me," Roxas said tiredly, and he collapsed onto the couch.