That's right, I'm BORED again. So here comes another fanfic. And which of our poor boys has his soul under the hammer this time?
Sorry Ed, it's your turn.
And so without further ado, Ai-chan, the Goddess of Happiness at Knife Point presents:
Ed is nice!(GX version!)
Ed was dozing off on his sofa after finally finishing his business for the day. He'd been to a photo shoot, a signing and two meetings with two of his sponsors. He was tired. He was in no mood whatsoever for what was about to happen next.
There was a subtle change in the atmosphere of the room, as though the air had moved. Ed snapped awake and looked up sharply.
"Ed Phoenix!" a woman's voice shouted. Ed leapt to his feet and looked around, on guard. The owner of the voice then appeared directly in front of him and pointed dramatically directly at his nose, almost touching it. "Ed Phoenix, you are charged with being a smug git, and as such, I demand you make up for it for performing three good deeds, to prove you are nice!"
"Who the heck are you?" Ed replied, enraged "What business is it of yours what I do?"
"I'm a Goddess of Happiness, and I kind of hate you." the woman replied in a more normal tone of voice. She pouted and crossed her arms "But I don't want to hate you, because I know you're really a nice guy. So I want you to do some nice things. So I'll not hate you. And stuff."
"Listen lady, I don't know what you've heard or what you're on, but here's a newsflash for you-"
Ed crossed his arms "I don't care if you hate me. And as for happiness, if you want to make me happy you can go away and mind your own business."
"What's wrong with spreading a little happiness, Ed? Anyway, if you don't do it, I'm going to, I dunno... rip your soul out or something. So there." Ed flopped back down on the couch and lay back, closing his eyes.
"Look, for your information I donate almost all my money to a school to keep it going. Not that I want it spreading about. Now, since I've decided you're a hallucination, kindly go away."
"I'm afraid I can't do that, Ed." the woman said brightly "I'll be checking up on you."
After a little while Ed cautiously opened an eye. There seemed to be no-one there. He dozed off.
Ed woke up the next day when he rolled off the couch and triggered an excruciating cramp in his shoulder. He'd fallen asleep in his clothes. He cursed and rubbed his shoulder. He'd have to be up and ready in just over an hour.
'I'd best have a shower... stupid hallucination... maybe I should book some time off...'
Ed grabbed a towel and furiously rubbed his hair. Nice? He was too busy to be nice. The Pro Duelist world didn't allow for 'nice'. Hell Kaizer was living proof of that, wasn't he? He sure as hell wasn't nice, was he? Why couldn't hallucinations go and bother him?
Still slightly bleary eyed, Ed squeezed out his toothpaste and started to brush his teeth. The warm water had done wonders for his cramped shoulder, but it still twinged. He went to rinse his mouth out and nearly choked, spitting mouth rinse all over his mirror. Underneath the foam dribbling down the mirror, his image was not his own. The woman from last night smiled at him and said brightly;
"Remember Ed, I'm watching you-" and then she was gone. Ed's own shocked and now even paler than usual face stared back at him.
"That's it." he said out loud "I'm booking time off today."
Ed got his breakfast ready with one hand while he spoke to his agent on the phone with the other, his voice occasionally getting muffled when he had no choice but to grab something with his teeth. He hadn't bothered to find a replacement for Manjyoume yet and in any case, it was nice to just have his place to himself in the morning for a change.
"I'm sorry Emerelda. I know it's difficult. But I've had a rough night and I think I've been hallucinating, so I really think I need a day or two off." he paused while he listened to Emerelda be infuriatingly reasonable and understanding. He was hoping she would talk him out of it. He was a pro for goodness sake; he couldn't take time off ust because he'd had a crazy dream that some woman had told him to be nicer or else she'd rip his soul out. On the other hand, he had some very odd friends and people were quite often turning up and threatening to rip their souls out, so maybe it wasn't a hallucination after all.
"Well, I'll cancel all your appointments for today and book you the next three days off, alright Ed?" Emerelda confirmed, dragging him out of his thoughts.
"Cancel all today's appointments?!" he started "You can't! I've got that interview with Duelist Monthly and that other meeting with our big European sponsor! And that's not even the half of it!"
"I'll make you new appointments, Ed." Emerelda replied "You will have one appointment today, though." she finished, happily.
"Thank goodness." Ed replied, relieved "Is it the appointment with that big TV company about the pro league rights? Because that's really important, you know."
"Oh no, it's far more important." Emerelda reassured him "I had one of the staff make you a doctors appointment as soon as you mentioned hallucinations."
"But-" Ed was cut off.
"We can't have people thinking we work our duelists to the point of madness, Ed." Emerelda said firmly "Take a few days off and relax. You're in the doctor's at 10am. Don't be late, or they might not see you. Take care." Ed glared at the phone briefly, sighed and hung up. Emerelda worked fast. It would do no good to try and get his appointments back, she would already have at least half of them cancelled and re-scheduled and messing them about even more wouldn't do him any favours.
Ed sat at the table and sipped his tea reflectively, his mood worsening. He was annoyed at missing four whole days of work. What was he supposed to do with four days off? And he hoped Emerelda hadn't mentioned the hallucinations to anyone but the doctor. Pro duelists had to deal with stress all the time. It was tough gig. He couldn't go around getting days off for being stressed. He'd be the laughing stock of the whole league.
After fretting and fiddling around his apartment all morning, he left early to go and see the doctor. He hoped he was just lacking some vitamins or something, maybe he was a little anaemic. However, the doctor found nothing. He told Ed to get some rest and relax for a few days.
Ed had had quite enough rest already as it was. He wasn't used to having free time. When he wasn't jetting off to a new location or attending interviews or meetings, he was training. He'd been at a loose end just trying to think of things to do to burn time between getting up at half six and going to the doctor's at ten.
'Maybe I'll go visit the school.' Ed thought as he walked along the street 'It'll be nice to see how all the kids are doing.'
Ed wandered aimlessly around the school. Classes were still going and he didn't want to interrupt.
He wondered if there was any point in checking in at the reception. It was standard procedure, but everyone knew who he was anyway.
'What the heck.' he thought and headed for the office 'It'll give me something to do while I wait for class to finish. And I can see how things look financially...' he brightened up as he neared the office 'Today won't be a total waste of time after all.' He knocked on the office door and went in.
"Hello? Why, if it isn't Ed Phoenix!"called the lady at the desk "Is something the matter?" she asked, her tone changing from bright to worried "We aren't scheduled to meet for weeks."
"Don't worry, it's nothing." Ed reassured her "I have a few days off and I thought I'd come and see how the school was doing. Is everything alright? Do you have enough teachers now?"
"We're doing fine, Mr. Phoenix." the woman nodded "We were able to hire those extra teachers we needed, thanks to you." she smiled. Ed smiled back.
"Good. If there's ever a problem, let me know and I'll see what I can do." The bell rang. "I'm going to go and see what the kids are up to."
"Thank you, they'll like that." the woman gave him a respectful nod as he left "Thank you for dropping by, Mr. Phoenix. Let us know if you need anything." Ed nodded back.
"I will, thanks."
Once outside, he was soon spotted by the children. The playground was right in front of the main office, so as soon as he set foot outside he was mobbed by several children.
"Hey, it's Ed!"
"Mr. Ed is here!"
"Did you come to play with us?"
"I wanna duel! I wanna duel!" Ed knelt down so he was face to face with the children.
"You don't have to shout, I'm not deaf." he told them, smiling "And what are you all up to today?"
"We was playin' house, but Timmy said it was stupid, and he kicked over the oven and it set on fire and everyone died!" shouted a small brown haired girl to Ed's left.
"Ha ha, Timmy you were playing house!" a black haired boy mocked the boy next to him, giving him a shove. The other boy shoved back.
"I was not!" he protested, turning crimson "I was just going to get my stuff and they all said suddenly I was playing and I said 'no way' but they were all being stupid!"
"Hey, Ed!" another little girl tugged on Ed's sleeve "Ed, I drew you some new cards! They're really cool, wanna see?"
"Ed doesn't wanna see your dumb cards!" Timmy snorted "They're probably all dumb girly cards and anyway, girls can't duel!"
"They can too!" the little girl shouted back, welling up "And Ed does too wanna see my cards!"
"I'd love to see your cards, Millie." Ed replied, smiling "It's not nice to diss people's card designs, Timmy." he told the boy firmly.
"Yay!" Millie clapped and then grabbed Ed's hand, pulling him toward the classroom. She stuck her tongue out at Timmy halfway across the playground.
"These are very nice, Millie." Ed patted the girl on the head.
"This one's my favourite!" she said, pointing at one "Oh, but this one is the best one, look, I coloured all in the lines and everything!" The bell rang. "Ed, are you gonna stay for some lessons? We're doing cooking next! We're gonna make a cake!" Millie asked exitedly as the children came pouring into the classroom.
"I don't think I'm allowed, Millie. And I don't want to bother your teacher." Ed replied.
"Aww!" Millie cried, hanging onto his hand "C'mon, Ed!"
"I'm sorry, but I don't make the rules." Ed apologised.
"Miss, Miss!" shouted Millie, flying over to the teacher as soon as she saw her "Ed can stay and do cooking with us can't he? He can, can't he?"
"Oh, Mr. Phoenix!" the teacher started, after recovering from brief confusion "What brings you here? I hope the children haven't been bothering you."
"Not at all." Ed replied shaking his head.
"Miss, Ed can stay, right?" Millie asked again, determined.
"If he wants to." the teacher told the little girl "Mr. Phoenix, would you like to join us for the next lesson?" she asked Ed "We're going to be making cake. You're welcome to join in."
"I'd love to." Ed replied. There was a cheer from several children, who then immediately began to argue.
"Mr. Ed, Mr. Ed, join our group!"
"No way! He's going to be in our group!"
"You guys don't even play duel monsters! There's no way he'd want to be in your group!"
"Children!" snapped the teacher "Be quiet, put on your aprons and get out your cooking things or he won't be in anyone's group!" The children fell silent and rushed to get ready.
Later, assembled in the kitchen classroom, the teacher divided the children into groups and stuck Ed with the best behaved children, so as not to cause him any trouble. He'd been stripped of his jacket and was sporting the spare apron. It was quite small because it was child-sized. It had flowers on it and a mouse wearing a dress.
"Okay, children! We're all going to make a Victoria Sponge cake today! So I'm going to hand out the recipe to each group leader and you have to follow the instructions." the teacher shouted, making her way round the class handing out sheets of paper. She handed one to Ed.
"If you have any trouble, just tell me right away." she told him firmly.
"Okay, what do we have to do first?" Ed asked the kids, laying the recipe out on the table so they could all see.
"Oh, Oh, I know!" Millie's hand shot up in the air. By sheer fluke she'd ended up in Ed's group and was silently gloating about it to the various Ed fans in the other groups, who were giving her jealous looks from their own tables. "We have to put in the flour! And then, and then, we have to put in the eggs!"
"Okay, who wants to do that?" he asked. There was a general chorus of 'me me me!' "Okay, Sarah, you put in the flour, and you three can put in one egg each." Ed told them. There were a few 'aww's from the few left out children. "It's okay, you can do the next thing, Mark. Then you, Max. Okay, what next?"
"We mix it up!" said Mark enthusiastically, grabbing a whisk.
"Okay then, let's-"
"Goodness, Ed that's not right.." the teacher looked over his shoulder to see how they were getting on. "You're supposed to sift the flour before you put it in. And it's supposed to be put in last. You need to cream together the butter and sugar first-"
"Oh." Ed looked at the recipe "Oh, so I was. Sorry. I guess there's nothing I can do about it now."
"Well, do it in another bowl first and then add it. It should be alright..." the teacher replied and moved on to the next group.
After sorting the other ingredients, Ed and his group looked at their mixture.
"It looks lumpy."
"Yeah. I don't think it's 'posed to be lumpy, Mr. Ed. What are we gonna do?"
"Don't worry, we'll fix it..." Ed reassured them "Where are the whisks and things?" The children pointed. Ed rummages around in one of the drawers until he found an electric whisk. The teacher gave him a quizzical look. "Is it okay if I use this?" he asked her, pointing at it.
"Yes, but don't let the children use it by themselves." she warned him. Ed nodded. He returned to the table with the whisk and plugged it in.
"Okay, it should be fine if we mix it with this." Ed said, switching it on. When the mixture looked about right, he pulled it out. There were a few shrieks from the children, causing the teacher to come hurrying over.
"Honestly, Mr. Phoenix." sighed the teacher "When I said the children shouldn't use it unsupervised, I didn't know I should have included you."
Ed and several of the children had cake mixture splattered across their aprons and faces. Ed had forgotten to switch the mixer off before he pulled it out and it had gone everywhere.
"Sorry." he apologised. The children giggled.
"Aww, Ed's in trouble!" they chorused.
"Quickly, everybody, you need to get your cakes in the oven or you won't have time to make the jam and cream!" the teacher called, eyeing Ed meaningfully.
They managed to get the cake into the oven without any further mishaps. This time, Ed bothered to read the recipe before asking the kids.
"So what do we need to do now?" he asked.
"Oh, me! Pick me!" Mark's hand shot up in the air, beating even Millie "We have to make the cream!"
"And how do we do that, Mark?" asked Ed.
"Er..." Mark slowly put his hand down.
"Um, um, we have to mix sugar and butter!" Millie piped up.
"What kind of sugar, Millie?" Ed asked. Millie took a deep breath.
"Icing sugar!!" she shouted, as if the answer would be forgotten if she didn't yell it right away.
"Right, right." Ed replied, putting his finger to his lips "So who wants to do that? Why don't you do it, Sammy?" he gave the spatula and bowl to the last child in the group, who'd been quiet and hadn't managed to do anything yet. Sammy nodded and set about measuring the sugar and butter.
"Now we have to make the jam!" Millie shouted "Mr. Ed, can I make the jam? Can I?"
"We'll all make the jam while Sammy makes the butter cream." Ed replied diplomatically "Millie, you get a bowl and Max, you get the sugar. Mark, you need to get another measuring pot."
As the kids were measuring the fruit and sugar for the jam, there was a gentle tug at Ed's sleeve.
"Um, Mr. Phoenix..." came a quiet voice. It was Sammy. "I think I used too much butter, Mr. Phoenix. Am I in trouble?" he asked in a worried voice.
"No, no." Ed reassured him "You just need to add more icing sugar. Just keep adding it until it looks right."
"Okay..." Sammy nodded and went back to his bench to add more sugar.
The kids had finished measuring the fruit and sugar and were somehow managing to cause a catastrophe merely by pouring them into the pan. Ed asked them to clean up and sent Sammy to get the water. Sammy had made a good job of the butter cream, but the problem was there was now much too much of it. The teacher picked that moment to move back to Ed's group to check the damage. She took one look at the bowl, sighed, and walked off to the next group.
A few minutes later she came running back as a plume of black smoke rose up from the simmering pan.
"You need to stir that, or it'll burn!" she shouted, grabbing it off the stove and running to the window to stop the classroom getting smoked out.
Eventually, the cake was finished. Despite the disasters of the last hour, it didn't look half bad. Ed had solved the problem of having too much butter cream by using it as icing as well as filling. He'd even managed to cover up the fact that it had been cut wonky and the slightly darker than normal jam.
At the end of the lesson, Ed apologised to the teacher. The teacher, merely relieved that the cooking lesson was over and that no major disasters had occurred, thanked him for his time and continued support and said goodbye.
Ed walked back to his apartment in a good mood. He'd made rather a mess of the cake, but it had turned out alright and he liked spending time with the kids. As he rounded the corner and walked along the office blocks towards his block, something made him look round. His reflection was wrong. He nearly choked.
"Leave me alone, dammit!" he shouted, causing several people to turn round and stare. Ed pretended to be talking on his mobile. The watchers shrugged and continued on their way.
"One down, two to go, Ed." whispered the woman reflected in the glass "Keep up the good work."
Then she was gone.
In a foul mood again, Ed stomped back up to his apartment. Thankfully, the only reflection he saw in the bathroom was his own. Women appearing in his bathroom... it was like that business with the fangirls all over again. Thank goodness for restraining orders. He wondered if he could get a restraining order on a godde- on a hallucination. Probably not.
Ed dozed off...
Author: Well, what tripe that was, eh? I won Nanowrimo last year. What am I doing writing this stuff? ¬¬ I'm gonna go write some real books... Hurray for fanfiction writing making me want to do something constructive with my time!
However, if anyone feels like that wasn't time they'll never get back, feel free to review. Flame it all you want. I don't get writers who say 'no flames plz!!' How can you take a thumbs up seriously if you won't take a thumbs down at all? Although that's kinda what being a writer is all about, I guess. Hmm. If anyone has any suggestions for what else we should force Ed to do, feel free to suggest away! (He must suffer. See how I make him suffer. Can't you just see it?)