Part 5: The Grand Finale
Alternate Title – Part 5: When Luxord finally decided to come back.
But yes, this the end of 'Sick Day.' Don't look at me like that; this was never meant to be long. But I'm gonna miss it. –cries- So in honor of it being the last chapter, say hello to the monster final chapter of 'Sick Day.' We're gonna be here a while.
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Kingdom Hearts belongs to Square and Disney. The Grimm fairy tales belong to, well, Grimm.
There was, of course, small delay before anybody even remembered the discarded book. Xemnas and Vexen were too busy bandaging Saïx's ruined face, staple-gun lying at their sides, and Axel, covering the lower half of his face with a doctor's mask, was too busy talking to Xigbar.
"So you painted it red and white," he was saying, and Xigbar nodded, "so it would look like a candy cane."
"Yeah, and then you just have to rub some peppermint on it to make it smell like one too."
"Ah." Axel snuck a glance over at Roxas and grinned wolfishly under his mask. Roxas scowled at him.
"If you think I'm as stupid as Demyx is, then you've got another thing coming," he grumbled, feeling with his toes for a cool spot. Really, it was way too hot under those blankets. "I'll bite your candy cane right off," he added for good measure, and the cool spot he had just found suddenly blazed into a summer heat. Roxas told himself it was the fever.
But in time, the injuries were taken care of, and Zexion shuffled forward to read from the book. Saïx might have continued reading; it hadn't sounded as if he was done, but for right now, he was pretty much incapacitated. Xemnas and Vexen had swathed his entire head in two full rolls of gauze, and the Nobody now looked like some sort of rejected mummy, head entirely white except for the tufts of candy-blue hair sticking out between the layers. How he could still breathe, none of them really knew, but there Saïx was, sitting with his back stiff as a rod, right next to Xemnas. And for some reason, his sightless face was fixed in the direction of Axel. It was something out of one the horror films Lexeaus sometimes brought to The World That Never Was, and already, there was a wide berth between Saïx and the other Nobodies, just in case he decided to stand up and walk toward Axel, arms outstretched, making weird groaning noises.
Zexion flipped his hair back, pulling his long bangs to the side, and then he began to flip through the book, nose detecting myriad smells, some of which were highly suspicious.
"This page smells like Axe," he said, bringing the book up to his face and sniffing.
"Isn't that what Axel wears?" Larxene asked, and both Roxas and Demyx nodded. Axel inched away from the water-wielding Nobody.
"Stalker," he muttered, and Roxas growled again without meaning to. Only he should know what kind of perfume (or was it called cologne?) Axel wore!
Zexion shrugged and continue to rifle through the book, stopping every now and then to either sniff at a page or read a few sentences. Finally, he stopped, flipped back, and began to read.
"Once upon a time, there were two sisters, Snow Vexen and Rose Axel."
"Can we stop with the gender-bending?" Axel interposed, voice muffled from the mask, and at the same time, Vexen huffed, "Can we stop making fun of me?"
"But you're the geezer," Xigbar explained, laughing. "We need to make fun of you." Immediately, ice began to snake up his legs, and within seconds, Xigbar the Freeshooter, became Xigbar the Glacier, completely encased in a rather large and rather cold ice block. Vexen sniffed and tossed his head up into the air. The other Nobodies exchanged nervous glances and mittens, and Zexion continued, breath puffing in the air.
"They lived in the woods with their mother, Widow Larxene, and they were always playing in the fields, chasing squirrels and rabbits and whatever else lives in woods. I get stuck doing hallway cleanup all the time, so I never get to go outside and see what's going on."
"Kindly try to keep your personal feelings separate from the story, Number 6," Xemnas said sternly, without looking at him.
"Yes, Superior," Zexion replied, mouth thinning into a thin line. Everybody else got to go outside on missions. Why couldn't he? He continued with the story. "One night, as the Widow Larxene was yelling Snow Vexen and Rose Axel about playing their music too loud, a bear came bumbling in. Widow Larxene tried to kill it with her electric skillet, but it didn't bother the bear, and the two sisters were too scrawny for it to eat. So it stayed by the fire, and Snow Vexen and Rose Axel amused themselves by poking it with a multitude of sharp objects. The bear went along with it, just in case the opportunity to eat one arose.
"And so, the bear, lazy thing that it was, came every night to the house, and every night, the Widow Larxene cursed at it, and the sisters poked it with whatever they could find. And then one day, the bear told Snow Vexen he had to leave and guard his plants from the evil Xaldin-pixie that was trying to eat his flowers."
"Xaldin-pixie?" Xemnas repeated incredulously, trapped somewhere between amusement and weary bafflement. "What in Kingdom Hearts is that?"
"Yeah, a Xaldin-pixie," Zexion told him. "With little tiny wings and a tiny body. Sort of like that thing Axel tried to eat in Neverland."
"You guys are never gonna let me live that down, are you?" Axel asked dejectedly, remembering that time before Roxas joined the Organization, when he and Demyx and Zexion had gone on vacation to Neverland. Maybe that's where Demyx had developed his little thing for Axel; Axel couldn't remember anything much past stealing Captain Hook's secret ale cache. He would have to ask Zexion what happened during that night. He could vaguely recall jumping around after something shiny…
"Anyway, so the bear left, and Snow Vexen and Rose Axel went on with their lives. A few weeks later though, Widow Larxene told them they had to go buy her new stuff, and she sent them to the marketplace. One their way back, they stumbled upon something small and jittery fluttering around in the air, trying to drag a large bush covered in giant pink flowers to a tree.
"It was the Xaldin-pixie, and he cursed at the sisters for just standing there watching him, throwing his tiny lances at them, and they laughed and swatted him around until his wings were bent and his head ached. After cursing at them one last time, he disappeared into a cloud of darkness.
"A few weeks went by again, and this time, the Widow Larxene wanted chocolate cake, and she sent her kids out to find some for her. One their way back, they met the Xaldin-pixie again, though this time he was trying to take a potted plant with him. Rose Axel was afraid of the plant and wanted to hurry on, but Snow Vexen wanted to abuse the pixie some more, and the two began a game of catch with the poor creature.
"As they were playing, the bear came into view, and Snow Vexen became so happy that he ("Or is it she?" Zexion wondered) threw the Xaldin-pixie right over Rose Axel's head and into the plant. The plant then ate the Xaldin-pixie."
"Nice," Xemnas muttered, shaking his head. Saïx patted his hand clumsily.
"The bear transformed just as the plant spit out the Xaldin-pixie's crumpled wings, changing from a smelly animal to a young man with pink hair and an unnatural love for flowers. He whisked Snow Vexen away, leaving Rose Axel to be eaten by the plant. The end."
"No," Axel interjected," that is not the end." He snatched the book away from Zexion, who let go reluctantly. "You see, they thought the plant are Rose Axel, who is getting a name change real soon, but instead, the plant let him go."
"That's 'cause you taste bad," Xigbar said. The glacier had melted just enough to uncover his head. "Your nasty aftertaste killed the plant."
"How would he know?" Roxas asked, voice dangerously sweet, and Demyx started blubbering, staring at Axel with huge, watery eyes. Axel began to sweat profusely.
"I-I have no idea what he's talking about," he stammered, trying to act smooth and failing miserably at it.
"That's the same thing you said to me when I asked you about that blinking red light I saw in my room."
"You still remember that, Roxas?"
"Is there something to remember, Axel? You told me it was nothing. Now I think it was something."
"I have no idea what you're talking about."
"See, there you go again."
"Stop acting like an old, married couple," Larxene snapped. "The rest of us have enough problems as it is without having that on our minds."
Axel tried to glare at her, but her antennae were sparking, and he decided it was safer to just keep reading. "So Rose Axel walked and walked until he reached a town where he could find some place to get a name change. But as he was walking, the stupid silver-haired king of the town kidnapped him and brought him to the castle, holding him prisoner. The king told him that he would have to turn all the vases in the room into Moogle Points or he would die in the morning."
"So you were the one who broke all the vases!" Marluxia suddenly yelled, diving for Axel, who managed to move out of the way at the last possible second. Instead of landing on Axel, Marluxia landed on Roxas, faces pressed together.
There was a silence in which time slowed and everything panned away from the bed. Axel had gone completely white, not just in face, but in clothes too, his hands in that classic anime position, first finger and pinky extended, the rest of his fingers curled into his palm. Wavy blue lines appeared by the side of his face, wriggling like worms, and his mouth was a perfect square, open in horrified shock. One of the squiggles that served as eyes twitched slowly. The other Nobodies stood in a line some distance behind him, faces blank, each one wearing a sweat-drop on the side of his (and her) head. Unlike Axel, they were still in color.
As for Roxas, he was forcibly reminded of that time when he had woken up to pressing weight on his chest and red hair in his mouth. Axel, either stone drunk or pushing his luck with the gods of fate, had passed out in his bed, lying sideways on top of him. Roxas hadn't been happy then – Axel still probably had some marks left from the justified and sound thrashing he had received, but on the whole, Roxas preferred Axel to Marluxia. When Axel stalked him, it was sweet in a creepy way. With Marluxia, it was just creepy.
And so, Roxas did what Xigbar had taught him to do when he had first joined the Organization. He screamed. Loudly.
And then he summoned his Keyblades and smashed the hell out of Marluxia. Dust and glitter flew everywhere, followed by little pieces of pink hair and black leather. It was worse carnage then Saïx's face. When Roxas was done, all that was left of Marluxia was a twitching heap of pink and black, with little darker pink flowers interspersed at odd angles. Roxas stood panting, and then he fell heavily back into the bed, tuckered out. Axel was still white and frozen.
But in the end, it turned out all right. Just when things were about to get as awkward as awkward come, who should step in but Luxord, back from a poker match in Port Royal.
"Look who I found spying through the keyhole," he said in that familiar British accent, leading Naminé in by the crook of her arm. In her other hand, she clutched her drawing pad and pencils, sheepish grin on her face. "And from what she's drawn, I'm figuring I've missed quite a lot." It was only then that he noticed the awkwardness. "Have I come at a bad time?"
"Number 13 is sick," Xemnas told him, breaking the silence. Luxord looked confused.
"We can get sick?" he asked.
"It's a nonexistent virus."
"And um, does this nonexistent virus have anything to do with why Xaldin is passed out on the landing?" Luxord ventured to ask. Xemnas merely shrugged. Saïx tried to say something, but he could barely move his lips, and the staples and bandages garbled his voice. Luxord took one look at him and blinked, pointing to Saïx while mouthing, "What the hell?" to Xigbar,
"Axel did it," Xigbar mouthed back. Luxord shook his head as if to say, "Why am I not surprised?" Naminé quietly settled herself into a corner, prodding the unmoving Marluxia with the tip of one of her pencils. One of the plants seized the pencil and tugged it out of her grasp, slipping back among the folds of Marluxia's coat, where it ate the pencil with loud crunching sounds. Naminé watched, fascinated.
"And you've been passing the time…how?" Luxord asked, bending down to pick up the cursed book. Zexion watched the book with hungry eyes. He wanted that book for some reason. It had become a sort of obsession.
"We've been reading," Demyx said softly.
"Reading bloody fairy tales," Luxord added, laughing. "You're such a darling, love." He ruffled Demyx's hair and was rewarded with a shy, intensely cute smile. Xigbar felt his conquest ebbing away from him.
"Perhaps you'd like to read, Number 10," Xemnas suggested. "We appear to be losing members at an alarming rate, and you haven't been subjected to any abuse yet."
"Well of course, Superior. I'd be glad to." In actuality, Luxord would have really liked to go to bed; his head was pounding from the copious amounts of rum he had drank – damn that Sparrow man – and he would have loved nothing more than to just sleep well into the morning, maybe with nice warm body sharing his bed. Oh yes, he had his warm body picked out. Now to go about seducing said body.
Ignoring the fact that they weren't done butchering the poor story of Rumpelstiltskin, Luxord began to read, voice like liquid eloquence.
"Once upon a time, there were twelve princesses who lived in large white castle, and every day, they would need new shoes because in the morning, their shoes would have holes in them. Their father, the king, couldn't figure out why their shoes would always have holes in them, and so one day, he decreed that the first suitor to figure out this mystery could marry any princess he choose. If he couldn't, however, figure it out after three days, he was sentenced to death.
"Dozens of suitors tried. The first was a young boy with spiky brown hair and stupid shoes. He was given a room adjacent to the princess', but after three nights, he had not figured out the mystery, and he was promptly beheaded."
There were a few snickers at that, and Xigbar hollered and tried to pump his arm, but it was still stuck in the glacier.
"Others tried, but all were met with the same fate. The king's fences ran red with their blood. But then one day, a dashing and debonair suitor came to the castle, intent on solving this mystery."
"And let me guess. That suitor is you," Axel said, rolling his eyes towards the ceiling."
"How'd you know?"
"But wait!" Demyx interrupted. "If you're the suitor, and there's twelve princesses, then we don't have enough people!"
That caused a small debate.
"He's right! There'd only be only eleven princesses."
"Maybe we should borrow some of the Princesses of the Heart." That came from Xemnas.
"Bloody hell, let me finish!" Luxord yelled over the discussion, waving the book. Zexion watched it like a hawk, head moving in tandem with the fluttering pages. "There's an easy solution! Naminé will simply have to be one of the princesses!"
Another battle ensued.
"But she's not part of the Organization!"
"A mere witch one of the princesses? I think not." Again, that was from Xemnas.
"Let's ask Naminé!" Naminé looked up from her doodle and shrugged. She was used to these occasional bouts of insanity.
"All right, all right! It's been settled! Now let me continue!" Luxord cleared his throat. "So as I was saying, this handsome suitor realized that the princesses must be drugging the food they offered the suitors so that no one would know where they were going. He formed an amazing plan, and when night fell and the princesses brought him food and wine, he only pretended to eat. Then, he lay in his bed and waited for them to leave.
"It took awhile, because the princesses began to bicker amongst themselves, and then Princess Axel stole Princess Xemnas' parasol, and that caused a huge nasty fight, but in the end, the princesses finally opened the secret passage that led way below the castle grounds. The suitor couldn't follow them directly without being noticed, so he opened a portal of darkness and followed in the shadows.
"Damn, this is a long story. Anyway, blah blah blah, the suitor finds out where the princesses have been going, and he brings back proof to set before the king, and then the king told him that he could have any princess of his choosing. So, he chose the oldest one, for the suitor wasn't that young himself."
"Why the hell would you choose Vexen willingly?" Xigbar asked, curling his nose in disgust.
"I'll freeze you again," Vexen warned.
"The suitor didn't choose Vexen, you dolt," Luxord snapped. "He chose Demyx." He smiled warmly at the aforementioned Nobody, and Demyx blushed pink. Xigbar wailed mentally.
Yet again, a debate quickly formed.
"What? Demyx isn't the oldest!"
"Yeah, Demyx is like, the youngest!"
"I am not!"
"You're younger than I am!"
"Axel, you're old. That's why Roxas doesn't want to get with you."
"You're calling me old, Xigbar? You have gray in your hair!"
"Chicks dig the gray. Makes me look sophisticated."
"Roxas is the youngest, right?"
"I thought it was Naminé."
"Why are we even having this discussion!" Xemnas yelled, temper snapping. "Ages don't apply to us! So stop it!"
"Aw, you just don't want everybody to know you're the second oldest."
"I'll have you demoted, Number 2. And you're older than me!"
"I'm still young," Zexion added, holding up his arm.
"Shut up!" everybody yelled at the same time, and poor Zexion bowed his head and crept out of the room, but not before taking the book. Weapons deadline was fast approaching, and he finally had found his weapon of choice. Yes, he would be invincible with the power of fairy tales at his side!
And then something amazing happened. Roxas, who had been silent since Luxord arrived, started choking quietly. At least, that's what it sounded like to Axel, and he rushed over to the bed and flung the covers off. There Roxas lay, curled up on his side, hands folded over his stomach, face a bright, screaming red, making those weird choking noises. Axel thought he might be dying, and tried to flip him over onto his stomach, but Roxas was shaking too much, and just when Axel was about to yell for help (he thought it was seizure or epilepsy or something), he realized that Roxas, stoic Roxas who barely ever smiled, was laughing his ass off.
It was a beautiful moment, broken only by the fact that a certain brown-haired Keyblade-wielder was on his way to find them. But for now, the Organization was still one big dysfunctional family, and that's all that mattered.THE END
Holy crap, I can't believe this is the end. I've never finished a fanfiction before, and, omg, ignore the sappy ending, but yeah, this is it! I'm gonna miss you all! Thank you to everyone who's reviewed this silly little thing! I love you all, everybody's who's favorited this, or read this, or whatever! You guys are all awesome! Digital kisses abound!
Special shout-out to animegeek22 from MediaMiner, who's been around for the year it took to finish this thing and who reviews multiple times for no reason! You're the awesome.
Oh, and more shout-outs to all of the rest of you who have been here for the year! I'm marrying all of you, just so you know. Polygamy? I laugh in the face of monogamy! Bwahahaha!
And um…oh wow, I'm excited…so here's a rundown of what to expect in the future:
Scarab Oasis – The title's still pending, and it won't be crack, but hopefully I'll see some of you there when it comes up? It's Kingdom Hearts AU in 1920s Egypt. Look for it on a Fanfiction page near you!
A sequel to 'Canon Add-In' is due, and I've got this great idea for it. I'll probably start this one first, so be on the lookout for a Keyblade-wielding Mary-Sue who has lots of relations in the Organization! (animegeek22 helped cook this idea up.)
And finally, we have an Axel/Roxas lemon due too, but wait? What's this? A crack lemon? With plants? And Marluxia!? Better bring the bleach.
Anyway, so long! It's been a great year with you guys! -blows kisses-