This is Not Titanic
by Nashie-chan (because changing pen-names is fun)
Disclaimer: Insert appropriate disclaimer here.
Five-hundred twenty-five thousand six-hundred minutes. How do you measure a last year on earth?
Okay, so technically it was more like fifty-seven minutes, but it felt like much longer, and Guyx was pretty much determining that it was going to be his last year on earth if any of the cast caught up with him. Explaining the functions of alternate dimensions of CERTAIN DOOM probably wouldn't fly high on anyone's list of things that made them happy (well, the Organization may not have counted, those heartless bastards - and he met that very, very literally).
He was currently walking down Scotland Road, hood up and ignoring the curious looks of the crew that passed him. For those not entirely familiar with shipboard terminology, Scotland Road is (was, perhaps?) a very nifty passage that ran nearly the entire length of the ship, and allowed the crew to play the most awesome game of Marco Polo ever. Of course, this little fact has been covered up by history, and the Narrator makes no claims to disrupt historical accuracy insofar as she knows it.
Guyx had been using Scotland Road to get here and there in the ship, contacting every cameramen and other members of the film crew, making sure that they kept the cast in line. No need to sink the ship ahead of schedule, although he did wish that they would have cast Luxord or Cid as the captain, seeing as none of the Organization members playing the senior officers had any idea how to steer a ship.
Oh, well. What could they possibly run into other than the giant iceberg floating some five days and couple hundred miles away?
So lost in his thoughts about perhaps running into the Loch Ness monster (somewhere far away, a certain teenager turned vampire turned mother bristled at a certain teenager turned werewolf while the Narrator cringed in remembrance of a certain mediocre teenage vampire-story turned teenage Rosemary's Baby) or that monster from Cloverfield, Guyx didn't even realize that his goal to avoid any members of the Organization had quickly dissipated into nothing. For at that very moment, he smacked right into the Whirlwind Lancer.
Now, lets back up a moment. It is safe to assume that Xaldin didn't spend his free time roaming along Scotland Road (or chasing peacocks at the zoo - that was Saïx's territory). No, the truth of the manner was that, after listening to the original Broadway cast recording of Titanic for a few more minutes, Xaldin, despite playing the role of the chief officer, had decided that was enough brain-breakage for the day and went off in search of coffee. Okay, so actually he was searching for a grande, iced, skim quad ristretto, spilt shot vanilla and cherry bone-dry cappuccino with a dab of foam and a sprinkle of cinnamon on top, but he'd settle for a regular coffee in favor of not ruining his OMGEVIL image.
(But we all know that the Organization is addicted to Starbucks - there is no probable way for an organization to be that full of misfits and have no one addicted to the money-sucking coffeeshop that originated in the angst-capital of the good ol' U.S. of A).
Back to the story, though…
Along the way, however, he got a little bit turned around, ended up going down more flights of stairs than he thought were necessary, lost his hat, got turned around in a couple of corridors that looked exactly the same, and finally found himself in the Scotland Yard.
Xaldin still wanted his goddamn coffee.
Guyx started at the collision and immediately reached up to fix his hood. Of course, Xaldin wouldn't recognize him, as they had never really met, but still, he didn't want descriptions of his real appearance to make it back it anyone else. He grinned slightly. "Hey, Xaldin."
Xaldin frowned (he was still moody from his lack of overpriced coffee). "You."
"Yes, me. How are you? Enjoying the weather?"
"You have some explaining to do."
"That didn't quite answer my question…" Guyx attempted to dodge around Xaldin, but found this to be slightly impossible due to the sudden appearance of six lances pinning him to the wall. "Ooookay. I guess I have some explaining to do." He paused. "Where's your officer cap?"
"I lost it." Xaldin frowned. "I'm not sure you're aware but the members of the Organization who you have chosen to wear these hats don't exactly have hairstyles conducive to wearing them. Except Luxord, but Luxord doesn't count. Luxord never counts - he's British."
"Yes, well…" Guyx tilted his head to the side and pretended to consider this. "Sorry. But pinning me to the wall isn't going to do anything except turn on the kink alarms of certain yaoi fangirls." Xaldin thought about this statement, and considering the fact that he really didn't want to be in any yaoi fanfics, quickly summoned the lances back to himself, although they still floated threateningly next to him. "Thank you."
Xaldin crossed his arms. "Something strange has happened."
"Well, that sort of narrows it down, doesn't it?" Guyx pretended to be nonchalant, but he was thinking quite fast. Yen Sid's spell hadn't been that obvious to the cast, had it? If so, he was going to have a lot of explaining to do, and he was wondering if he would even have enough time to explain before everyone would be like "LOL NO! DIE!!"
Xaldin looked down the length of the corridor and looked automatically cool and mysterious (a secondary power to all members of the Organization, although Demyx was admittedly still working on that). "A couple of hours ago. Right before the ship left port. There seemed to be a…strange disturbance in the space-time continuum."
"There's always a strange disturbance in the space-time continuum…" Guyx noted. The third member of the Organization glared. Guyx sighed. "Well, you got me. Something did happen."
"Mind telling me?"
"Actually, yeah. I do-okay! Okay!" Guyx winced as he found two of the lances aimed right at his throat. Determining that decapitation was not in his best interests, Guyx took a deep breath and glanced down the halls. No other Organization member was to be seen. Good. "Okay. The thing is…we're sort of in an alternate dimension."
"What sort of alternate dimension?" Xaldin's tone was flat - Guyx took that as a bad sign.
"Well…here, the extras actually think you guys are the real crew of the Titanic. They don't see the film crew at all, I don't think, and…they actually think this is the real Titanic."
The pressure from the lances lessened somewhat. "That doesn't seem too bad."
Guyx coughed. "The reason they think that is because, at least in this dimension, it is 1912. This is the Titanic. And it is going to sink."
There was a long, dramatic silence (during which the Cheetah Girls took over India). Xaldin put on his even more dramatic DO NOT WANT face. Guyx sighed, and scratched the back of his neck. "Yeah. So we're kind of in a bind."
"Okay, understatement. But what's the worse that could happen?"
"Let him who is without sin cast the first stone. No flying machine will ever fly from New York to Paris. This is the start of a beautiful friendship. I should never have switched from Scotch to Martinis."
"Famous last words, director. Famous last words."
Meanwhile, in steerage, an absolutely riveting game of "I Spy" was taking place.
And by riveting, the Narrator means that the four cast members in steerage were bored out of their godforsaken minds. There is, after all, only so much one can do in a time period that has yet to invent Nintendo DS. Or table hockey. Or the Easy Bake Oven (please let it be known that there is an Easy Bake Oven lying around the World That Never Was, but for the sake of the reader's sanity and to prevent brain-breakage, the Narrator will cease in telling exactly whose room it is in).
"I spy with mine eye something…brown?"
"That, dear keyblade master, narrows it down to…oh, wait - half the room!" Axel grumbled, glaring at the ceiling. "This is boring! Can't we hurry up and crash into the iceberg yet?"
That comment got him curious looks from the other passengers, but Axel, being Axel, ignored them. After all, he had more important things to think about (and no, it did not involve a certain blond Nobody, a pair of handcuffs, and melting sea-salt ice cream, thank you very much.) The crew, that is, the camera crew who were being studiously ignored by the rest of the third-class passengers, all shared bored looks, and continued playing their game of Chutes and Ladders (undoubtedly, the finest game ever invented by Western civilization next to Pretty Pretty Princess).
"Well, I'm not sure there is much we can do, since all of Wednesday evening and a good-half of Thursday is just skipped over in the film," Naminé mused, her hands nestled on her lap. The costume and make-up crew had wanted to pull her hair into the braided plaits of her film counterpart, Helga Dahl, but Naminé had only smiled and refused. And when Naminé smiles and refuses, it would be tempting fate to make her do anything she didn't want - after all, she could draw a person doing the can-can on top of an elephant in the middle of Bora Bora, and no one would be the wiser.
Roxas frowned. "Still bored."
"What time is it?"
"Summertime, it's our vacation!" chirped some high-schoolers in another universe. Having just escaped the clutches of said universe, the quartet ignored the singing and decided, hey, well if nothing's going to happen, let's go check out Cherbourg (no, not Chernabog, because the Narrator is scared senseless of that thing, and had to turn the volume down when she defeated the boss in KH1...so, yeah. No appearance but big black evil demon creature here).
The group of four headed up towards the poop deck, where a handful of other steerage passengers were already clustered, watching as dusk settled over the ship and the city. The black ocean reflected the Titanic's golden lights, and the setting sun illuminated the silhouette of the vessel beautifully.
It was also, like, two degrees outside and Roxas let out an explosive sneeze.
The keybearer's Nobody looked much displeased by the plummeting temperatures and tucked his hands inside of his pockets. His nose and cheeks were already red, and he grumbled darkly about stupid North Atlantic temperatures and the month of April and thermostats. Sora wasn't faring much better, having been raised in the Kingdom Hearts equivalent of the Bahamas (insert obligatory Beach Boy song here), and grumbled darkly. Naminé too tucked her shawl closer to her and scooted closer to Roxas.
Axel, on the other hand, was warm and toasty. Being the end-all-be-all master over fire had its perks. "Ah, fresh air!"
The three teenagers standing near him shared looks.
"I've never really…"
"Do you think that we might be able to…?"
And Axel suddenly found himself squished in a group hug. He didn't really have time to say anything, only scowl as he looked down at the three teenagers who had sidled up to him for warmth. He made an annoyed face, but like the good Nobody he was, let them stay there. And the image was so cute and adorable and fluffy, that ten versions of it sprung up on a certain art website because Axel makes such an awesome space heater.
Axel raised an eyebrow. "You realize if any fangirls see this, they're going to have years worth of smut to write about."
Roxas snorted, rolling his eyes. "Anything I say right now about you being the only hot object around can be taken as subtext so I'll just say Cherbourg looks nice at night." He glared suspiciously at Axel's smirk. "And don't you dare let that go to your head." He then winced - dammit, subtext. He was beginning to think that there was some sort of twisted rule in the universe that turned all of his conversations with Axel into double entendres.
Sora grinned and stuck out his tongue, and Naminé giggled, wrapping Axel's arm around her. "Don't worry, Roxas. We don't tell anyone."
Roxas only grumbled.
The group stood there for around a half-hour more, watching as the tenders let off more passengers, including, presumably Tifa, who was portraying Molly Brown. Belatedly, Sora realized that they still hadn't found Guyx to demand answers about that really weird feeling that had had earlier that day. He frowned - okay, so he hadn't really been looking for Guyx because the ship was too big, and hey then there was lunch (and telling a teenage boy about free food was the equivalent of telling high school students about free Starbucks WTFOMGLOLCAFFEINE!!), and then Axel wanted to look around too…
"Guys, do you think we should find Guyx soon?"
Axel frowned. "What, to ask him about that weird…thing that happened earlier?"
"Maybe we're all just being paranoid," grumbled Roxas.
"All of us?"
"Maybe there's something in the water?"
"Of course there'd be something in the water…there's always something in the water…"
"We could go look for him," suggested Naminé, tugging on Axel's hand. "It's only a ship after all. There are only so many places Guyx can be - someone must have seen him."
"Unless he's hiding."
Axel smirked as they headed towards the aft well deck. "Well, he wouldn't be any worse than our old director in that aspect."
As they headed towards the entrance to the third-class cabins (and hopefully find Guyx, wherever he decided to poof off to), something caught Sora's eye a few decks above. It looked as if Kairi and Riku had also come outside to watch the tenders allow some of the Titanic's passengers to disembark. Kairi was leaning far over the railing to look down at the smaller boats, and Riku was laughing at something she said. Yuffie was standing slightly off to the side, looking quite green. Looks like the swaying motion of the ship did not agree with her. Grinning, Sora cupped his hands over his mouth and shouted, "OI!! RIKU!! KAIRI!!"
Scientific tests have been done, and no one is quite sure if a sonic boom is louder than Sora's yelling. (Four out of five dentists agree though - chewing Tridant after meals helps reduced cavities. One out of five dentists is obviously an idiot, and deserves to get kicked in the shin). But, the scientists are still split about the sonic boom debate.
Riku and Kairi both looked startled, but turned to wave at their brown-haired friend. Yuffie managed a half-hearted wave before a strange look appeared on her face, and she ran back inside. Sora grinned, and started to make his way up the stairs towards the upper decks…and was at once stopped by some nameless member of the crew, who frowned at him.
"I'm sorry, sir, but you can't go up there. First class only."
Sora made a face at him. "I'm just gonna go talk to Riku and Kairi to ask them if they've seen Guyx. It's no big deal." He waved his arm. "See, we're not even filming now."
"I don't know what you're talking about, sir, but third class is restricted to this portion of the ship."
"Aren't you taking the method acting a little too seriously?"
The crewmember only gave him a big frown that not even Sora's most cheerful expression could alleviate. The keyblade master sighed, and headed back down the stairs, where Roxas, Axel, and Naminé were waiting for him. "He won't let me through. Looks like we're going to do this the hard way."
"You mean the sneaky way?" Axel asked with a laugh. Roxas smirked.
"The fun way." Naminé looked a little put out, and opened her mouth to say something, but the three boys were already dragging her into the warm interior of the ship, arguing over plans on how to make it past 1912 shipboard security.
Lets just say most of the ways involved a crowbar, some pixie sticks, and that one voice guy from Mortal Kombat (FINISH HIM!!).
This was madness.
Wait, wait, correction. This. Was. Sparta!
(Sorry, the Narrator simply couldn't resist).
The bridge was usually the one place on the ship that was filled with accord and aplomb (well, except for those handful of seconds on the night of April 14th, but who's counting?). The master of the ship - in this case, Xemnas - and his officers oversaw the ship there, and steered her safely west towards the grand ol' city of New York (again, except for those handful of hours the morning of April 15th, but again, who's counting?).
At the moment, everything was calm and collected and peaceful.
Guyx thought of it as the calm before the storm.
The bridge had been cleared of all non-essential members of the crew - meaning that the only people (non-people…whatever) on the bridge were all members of the Organization…and Cloud. Xemnas was frowning thoughtfully, his hands tucked behind his back as he peered regally out at the fo'c'sle (yes, that is a very strange spelling for the word "forecastle", but alas, the Narrator knows too many nautical terms to leave them by the wayside) deck.
Xigbar was currently at the wheel, whistling the tune to Gilligan's Island brightly , his officer cap skewered just to the side, enough for Guyx to frown in curiosity. Vexen was standing closer to the starboard side of the ship, his nose buried in a book and he was studiously shooting visual daggers at Guyx from over its edge. He pretended not to noticed. Marluxia was preening near him, looking quite uncomfortable with his bowler hat, and if Guyx hadn't warned everyone earlier about the cost of their costumes, looked quite ready to chuck it overboard.
Saïx, Zexion, and Cloud, as officers Lightoller, Lowe, and Boxhall respectively, were also scattered about the bridge. Guyx personally thought if any fangirl managed to get a picture of it, there would be no living it down for any of the members of the Organization. The officer uniforms were just too damn snazzy.
"So…" Guyx drawled. "I suspect Xaldin told you all of our predicament."
"Yes," replied Xemnas. He gave Guyx the ultimate frown of doom. "And you knew of this before?"
That obviously was the wrong thing to say. No less than a second later, Guyx found himself on the receiving end of Xigbar's guns, Saïx's claymore, and Marluxia's scythe. Xemnas looked unperturbed, Xaldin simply sighed, and Cloud and Zexion did nothing (although Cloud still looked altogether annoyed that he had to be at this meeting - well, as annoyed as Mr. Emopants can get). Guyx held up his hands with a laugh. "Woah, woah, guys. Chill. It's not like I planned for us to get stuck in an alternate dimension. I'm just the director."
(After this entire incident was over, Guyx was considering adding "darn good actor" to his résumés).
"Last time, our director was in cahoots with the Higher-Ups," Xigbar noted with a wry grin. "Got any reason to give us why we shouldn't believe the same with you?"
"Because…I'm not? Honestly, I have nothing to do with the Higher-Ups." At least, not the Higher-Ups you're thinking of, Guyx thought with a inward laugh, but refrained from saying so aloud because hey, he liked his brains inside his head, thank you very much. "Besides, I'm sure we'll get out of here just fine as long as everything goes according to schedule."
"How convenient," Saïx noted dryly. Guyx grinned.
"I know, right?"
Vexen snapped his book shut with an audible thud. "I don't see how you can be so…cheerful at a time like this. This…ship is going to sink in five days time…" He paused, and then frowned at Xemnas. "I don't suppose we can redirect the ship even further south so that it won't."
Xemnas shook his head. "I have no control over that. I am not at the wheel when the ship is supposed to strike the iceberg."
"That's all me," Xigbar proclaimed with a grin. "Lets just find some binoculars for Demyx, and we should be set."
Guyx opened his mouth to protest this change of plans - dammit, the ship needed to hit the iceberg in order for them to get out of this alternate dimension - but Cloud interrupted him. A pair of intense blue eyes settled on him. "Guyx…how real is this dimension?"
The director crossed his arms and looked thoughtful…well, at least his posture was thoughtful since his face was still obscured in the uber-mysterious shadows of his hood. "Pretty real, I think. Why?"
"Because you have to realize - if this is the Titanic and it does really sink, then that means that fifteen hundred people are going to go down with her." He paused. "Fifteen hundred people are supposed to die."
Well…Guyx never actually thought of it that way. Now that did present a problem. Because even if the Organization members couldn't succumb to hypothermia and the other Nobodies making up the extras couldn't as far as he knew, Sora most definitely could. Cloud, Riku and Kairi's characters were scotch-free, but the keybearer was the only non-Nobody in the cast who could and would. And a universe without a keybearer was not a good universe at all.
"So…I guess that's what they call a catch-22..." Guyx thought. The members of the Organization gave him skeptical looks. "Well, all, I have a few errands to make, I'll talk to you all later!" And without waiting for anyone to say anything, he had vanished from the bridge, leaving only a confused group of Nobodies behind.
"Forget this," Marluxia murmured, taking off his bowler hat and marching out the door. "I'm going back to my cabin."
Cloud watched as slowly, the members of Organization XIII disappeared from either the starboard or port entrance to the bridge, leaving only him, Zexion, and Xemnas. Cloud sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. How was it that despite his best efforts he always ended up neck-deep in epic? He believe somewhere out in the universe, a certain group of Refugees were cheering at the prospect.
Shameless plugging for online role-playing games? Never!
If there was one bad thing about being not-dead, it was that your appearance in any subsequent stories was usually met with fevered hysteria and complaints about retcon. Aerith sort of wished that this bout of insanity would plague Yen Sid so that it would be easier to talk to him, or at least be easier to get him to open up about some things.
She had managed to slip out of sight when Cid and Luxord were arguing over something called BBC, and Belinda was attempting to find a way to reach Guyx (she felt a little bit guilty about that). She had been about to search for Leon to come with her until she realized that whatever Yen Sid was going to tell her was for her ears only, and despite the fact that Leon wouldn't have told another soul, she didn't feel comfortable bringing him along.
Besides, she hadn't seen Leon since Chapter One.
So there she sat, in the magical room, watching as Yen Sid contemplated the spell in front of him with a studious look on his face.
"Is there nothing else you can tell me, Yen Sid?"
"There are plenty of things that can still be learned."
"That…doesn't really answer my question." Aerith looked away. "Obviously, Guyx trusted me enough for you to trust me. Please tell what I can do to help."
"Being yourself is help in itself - you are the medium by which the director can communicate with us."
"You mean Guyx."
"That is the name the others have chosen for him, yes. His true name…I have left it to him when he will reveal it to you."
Aerith sighed. This was like talking to a brick wall. A brick wall with a pointy hat and bushy eyebrows. "Sir, with all due respect, how am I suppose to act as a medium? All he has told me so far is that things will be explained shortly. The only thing you've told me is that the others are all trapped in an alternate dimension."
Yen Sid folded his hands sagely. "Yes. Unfortunately, there seems to be a small…rift in that dimension."
Aerith blinked. "A rift?"
"Indeed. Even in my great power, I cannot create an alternate universe out of nothing. All great sorcerers must work from something - even the lady Rowling knew this."
"Wait. You mean…?"
Yen Sid shook his head. "Do not discuss it. If the fans knew the true aspect of her nature, we would never hear the end of it. The World Wide Web would be infiltrated with conspiracy nonsense and worlds created by young fans that believe in the impregnation of males. For the sake of the universe's continuity, this conversation must never leave this room."
The elderly sorcerer rose to his feet and walked to one of the windows, his hands folded into the small of his back. "But, yes. The dimension they reside in is a pocket dimension, one where another universe sometimes resides when it is not in use."
Alarms went off in Aerith's head, loud and annoying. Somewhere, someone realized this was a plot point, and somewhere else, oatmeal cookies were made. "When it's not in use?" She gave the wizard a wary look from where she was sitting. "What universe is this?"
Yen Sid took a deep breath, but his eyes never left the window. "It is a spectacular universe. A universe that holds the ancient spirits of a talented people - a people who need people and who are often considered the more fortunate people in the world."
Now, Aerith didn't exactly consider herself a cultural junkie. In fact, whenever she, Tifa, Leon, Cloud, and Yuffie played Trivial Pursuit (Yuffie refused to let Cid play because he was "old"), Aerith always laughingly told her team that she never knew any of the answers. After all, she had only given the rest of the group blank looks when they asked her about "Tubthumping". And everyone knows that "Tubthumping" is!
Aerith could only gape when Yen Sid spoke. Because even she knew that reference. "But…why? Why that universe?"
"Considering other universes they could have been placed in, this one is relatively harmless." Yen Sid turned back to her, looking mysterious and cool in the light of the universe that sparkled like a LiteBrite. "However, there is no possibility I would have placed them in any discomfort if the universe was not in grave danger." He paused. "And the King himself is in peril."
"King…Mickey?" A concerned look passed over Aerith's face. "What happened? Where is he?"
Yen Sid gave the not-dead Ancient a world-weary look. "He is lost to the fabrics of time and space. It is up to us to free him. That is why the ship must sail. That is why the ship must sink."
Aerith personally thought that made no sense, but refused to say so.
After all, how often was the universe in peril because the Titanic may or may not sink?
Speaking of King Mickey, how was the Disney icon fairing?
Actually, not that bad.
The unfortunate royal mouse was still in the clutches of his kidnapper although to say he was being tortured and teased and maimed would be an overstatement. In fact, King Mickey really just had to listen to his kidnapper ramble on about Laguna Beach and American Idol.
Wait - that was some form of torture, wasn't it?
"Are you still plottin'?" King Mickey called from behind his cage. "Y'know, this isn't gonna turn out okay."
His kidnapped swerved his head to look at him, and a smirk appeared on his face. "No hard feelings, Your Highness. I get my directions from a higher source."
King Mickey's ears pricked up curiously. "The Higher-Ups?"
"What? No, of course not. They have absolutely nothing to do with this." The kidnapped grinned. "My orders come from the Boss-lady."
"Yes. The Boss."
"Well, that's kinda cryptic."
"Don't worry about it, Your Highness. Everything will be revealed in time. And it'll all end in one big shindig."
"No. It shall be revealed now."
King Mickey swiveled. He knew that voice. He spun around in his cage, and saw a dark portal appear in the middle of the room. Out stepped a dark-clad, thin woman with a scarily green-hued face. Her eyes narrowed and a smile slipped onto her face. "Why, hello, Your Majesty."
King Mickey frowned, and reached for a keyblade that would not come to his aid. "Maleficient."
"Yes. I am so glad we are finally able to speak face-to-face. Unfortunately, I do not have the time to explain everything to you as of yet." She smiled wickedly. "However, please be aware - soon, everyone will realize that I shall not be ignored." The crow that sat on the end of her staff cawed loudly, and flapped to sit on the top of the cage.
His kidnapper finally lifted his hood, and King Mickey stared into the very familiar blue face of the god of the Underworld, despite the fact that he knew all along who he had been.
"How is that this fella managed not to set his hood on fire?"
King Mickey sighed and sat back in his cell.
It was just another one of those days.
It was about midnight.
Okay, kids. So for those of you who paid attention in science class, you may or may not have learned that as it gets later in the night, the temperatures drop. So the temperature at dusk when the ship arrived at Cherbourg had obviously dropped about five billion degrees. At that point in time, Sora, Naminé, and Roxas all used Axel as a space heater and presented the most adorable image ever in the Kingdom Hearts universe (right after Sora chilling with Winnie the Pooh and gang for the lulz).
Now, subtract Sora and Namine from this picture, and suddenly AkuRoku fans all over the world are grinning like nutcakes.
Roxas, having absolutely no defense from the cold except a thin wool coat, was tucked under his best friend's arm, grumbling over the necessity of it. Of course, there was no rule saying that the they had to be outside at the moment, but Roxas, being the stubborn blond pygmy that he was, wanted to see the stars. Obviously, that part of Sora's personality had fallen over into his Nobody. Axel had obliged to accompany him to mainly keep him warm because hey, who wants to have a frozen keybearer as one's best friend?
They hadn't found Guyx earlier so Sora and Namine had retired to bed (Sora's idea of being sneaky was tiptoeing past a member of the crew and then tripping over something that resulted in having to start from the very beginning - it's a wonder this kid was able to save the multiverses).
"It's cold," Roxas noted after a few minutes, snuggling closer into his coat.
"I'm just fine," Axel said with a bright smile.
Roxas jabbed him in the ribs.
They would have stayed out longer (and possibly talked about more things that would have the fangirls screaming "subtext!! No way are they just bffs!") but Axel caught sight of a familiar hooded figure walking forwards on the aft well deck. "Hey, Roxas. Hang on here a second. I forgot something."
"You forgot what? We're supposed to be poor."
But Axel was already gone, leaving Roxas by himself to protect himself from the chilly April night. His teeth immediately began chattering. Grumbling darkly about heat-supplying redheads and pointless ships and stupid icebergs, he headed towards the very end of the stern. Technically the crew wasn't supposed to be here until tomorrow night when Sora and Kairi first "meet" (love at first suicide attempt?), but Roxas wanted to see the trail the ship was leaving behind.
The Nobody glanced over at the other steerage passengers scattered about the poop deck - notably only two since the other passengers were relatively smarter and didn't go star-gazing at night when temperatures were as chilly as Riku's cold shoulder. So…uh, pretty chilly, yeah.
He was just beginning to not feel his fingers when a noise surprised him.
Roxas looked around the poop deck, but saw nothing. Frowning - maybe it was coming from the common room below - he turned back to look at the foam trail being left by the giant ship. Dammit, he wanted this entire thing to be over and done with. It was too cold and it was pointless and why the hell hadn't Xemnas hired a lawyer for the Organization yet?
Again, with the singing?
This time, Roxas, annoyed, spun around to go find Axel…and found himself face to face with a glowing…thing. Sadly, there was no way else to describe it. Perhaps the Ghostbusters had lost track of some of their ghosts? Or maybe Mulder and Scully were beginning to slip? Maybe it was due to fact that the glowing thing was upset that a certain fourth book about a certain love triangle between humans, vampires, and shapeshifters had the most delectably crappy battle climax ever? Well, whatever the circumstances, it was a glowing light of awesomeness and it was…singing? It was some song Roxas had never heard of before, but last time he checked, they had signed on for a historical romantic drama, not a sci-fi musical thriller.
"I've seen weirder things," the teenager murmured (namely, Naminé drawing yaoi fanart and Lexaeus singing Pussycat Dolls karaoke) and moved to go past the glowing cloud of doom, but stopped when the thing brushed his hand. And then…his hand felt suddenly felt slightly warmer. He glanced down at his hand and saw it glow faintly, and spun around in a defensive stance to face the cloud, keyblades at the ready.
But the cloud was gone.
And the warm feeling that had been only on his hand spread through the rest of his body, and then quickly disappeared, leaving him cold again.
Roxas blinked, and the Oblivion and Oathkeeper keyblades vanished.
"That was…weird and pointless," he murmured.
He turned and saw Naminé, looking much too pale in the starlight, her teeth chattering (obviously, all of these kids want to die of hypothermia before the ship even comes within a hundred miles of the iceberg). "Naminé? What are you doing out here? It's freezing?"
"I-I could ask the s-same of you," Naminé managed with a small smile. She then frowned, leaning forward and touching his arm. "Are you okay? You look a little d-dazed."
Roxas shook his head. "It's nothing. Lets go find Axel."
Naminé linked her arm through his and the two set off for the aft well deck…being followed by a slight rock tune that neither of them could hear.
Axel wasn't really surprised at the news.
"So…we're in an alternate universe."
"Where the Titanic is real."
"And it has to sink."
"Three out of three. Pretty damn good. Have you played this game before?"
"Well…that's just perfect."
Guyx nodded, and crossed his arms. "Yeah, I'm working on the perfect part of perfect."
"You do that," Axel frowned at him. "Until then, what are we supposed to do? Just twiddle our thumbs and wait for certain icy doom?"
"Um…yeah. Fate of the universe depends on it."
"Oh, well, in that case…" Axel paused, and then looked around, a frown on his face. "Do you hear that?"
Guyx blinked and then glanced towards the stern. "Is that…rock music? Who in the world could be playing rock music?"
At that moment, Naminé and Roxas appeared at the top of the stairs leading up to the poop deck. Both of them looked slightly surprised at seeing Axel and Guyx together, but having found their heater, quickly snuffed the emotion (oh…wait…) and bolted towards him. The rock music got louder, but neither Naminé nor Roxas seemed to hear it.
"You guys don't hear that?" Axel asked bemusedly. Roxas frowned.
Naminé and Roxas shared looks. "Nooo…why?"
Guyx sighed and scratched the back of his head wearily. "This is just one of those days."
Roxas waved his hand. "Another chance, another day." He scowled at Axel. "Can we please go inside where it's warm now?" Axel rolled his eyes and allowed himself to be pulled towards the third-class cabins by both blond Nobodies, leaving Guyx out in the cold. Not that the director minded. He pulled out his phone and glanced down at the text message he had received earlier from Aerith.
"Nice universe you have us stuck in, Yen Sid." He sighed. "Man, they are going to kill me."
Yup, Guyx. They most certainly will.
After all, being stuck in the universe of Broadway musicals is no fun. No fun at all.
Author's Note (1 Sept 08): I fail. I know. But summer turned out to be much busier than I expected. Plus I got involved with the most awesome of RPGs, and my muse also had been playing…on my laptop, nonetheless. So…yes, I'm sorry very much. However, after this, This is Not Titanic should be going to weekly updates, Please Excuse My French to bi-weekly updates, and Somebody, Somewhere, Someday…well, that only has one chapter and an epilogue left…
But, I feel like I owe you guys something for promising updates. So, my next story. Winter Olympics. The usual gang of suspects. A lovely little Italian café. And Zexion as a hockey player. It's still in the works, but I hope to see you all there.
By the way, Cyberflix is the company that made Titanic: Adventure Out of Time, which is such a great game. Aaand, Guyx may have jumped to conclusions about the weather's adverse affects on the cast. Uh-oh.
Next chapter - we finally find out where Leon's been, Kairi decides to swan dive off the back of the unsinkable ship, and the ghosts of Broadway past, present, and future decide to make their presence known. Run, Axel.
Again, sorry for the long hiatus. I'm back for good.