Axel carefully cracked the door open and slid in sideways. "So, how's it going?" he asked quietly. Lunch could wait a few minutes while he went to check up on his sick neighbor. Besides, he thought like he kind of owed Demyx something. His life, for instance.
Demyx blinked and shifted a little. "I gotta say, I've been better. But I've been worse too." He gritted his teeth as he suddenly started to shiver violently. He'd picked up a nasty cough during the time he'd been trapped in New Orleans, and he hadn't been back for four days before it turned into the mysterious fever that had knocked Axel flat earlier. He wasn't running such a high fever, and he was still more-or-less fully conscious and usually in his right mind, but he was constantly lethargic and too weak to get out of bed except to use the bathroom. And those shivering fits only drained more of his energy. "I could get tired of that," he choked when the fit was over, as he was burrowing deeper under the covers.
"Yeah. Not fun, is it," Axel murmured. Demyx shook his head weakly. "Anything I can get you from the kitchen while I'm at lunch?"
Demyx shook his head again. "No thanks. I'm not hungry...look, don't bother coming back...just go home and stay there...if you come back in this mess, you're just gonna get in even worse trouble...I'll be fine, I swear..."
Axel sighed. So this was going to be one of those times. "Demyx...there's no need to worry about that anymore. You're home now. You're safe. Unfortunately, you're also really sick."
Demyx blinked up at him uncomprehendingly, then looked around as if seeing his room for the first time. Then he chuckled weakly. "Oh...yeah...you're right...duh. How could I not recognize my own room?"
Axel half-smiled. "Heh. When I had what you've got now, I couldn't even recognize Roxas. Now that was pretty bad. And at least you're not spitting water at random."
"I said, at least you're not spitting water all over. When I was sick, they kicked me out of the castle for starting fires."
Demyx smiled a little, even though he'd heard it before. "That must have been a ton of fun..." He started shivering again, and Axel wondered briefly how he could stand being alone and sick in his room most of the time. He must have spent a lot of it sleeping.
Axel put one hand on the blankets. "All right, I'm going down to lunch; see you later. Don't forget to take your medicine, or Vexen'll get all pissy." Suddenly, a very warm, trembling hand emerged from under the blankets to cover his. "Hey, what are you..." But Demyx's eyes were closed, and he was still shivering weakly, even though there now was a faint smile on his lips. Axel sighed. "Okay, sicko, let go of me..." He moved his hand out from under Demyx's and left, trying to ignore the faint whimper from the bed. After all, someone without a heart could only pretend to feel lonely. Or guilty.
AN: Ta da. The beginning of a new...series, I guess. A series of connected oneshots, at least 500 words of actual story each, based on deviantArt's 100 Themes Challenge (which I can't do with art because it's hard to illustrate abstract concepts with abstract fractals), about Demyx slowly losing his hearing. This is number 35, Hold My Hand. The next and subsequent chapters will have more to do with Demyx's hearing loss, I swear.
New Orleans? What are they talking about? "Whoever Katrina Is", that's what. This is set mostly between Chapter 10 of "Katrina" and "The Day the Music Died".
Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts, got it memorized?