Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts or High School Musical, which this is slightly based on.
"Sora. Is gay!"
Kairi spat out her drink, eyes wide. "What?!" she managed to shriek after a few moments of spluttering out orange soda.
Selphie slammed a fist on the lunch table. "I said Sora's gay!"
"Wait," Kairi said, disbelievingly. "You mean Sora, as in the star of College Melody, America's ultimate guy? That Sora?!"
Selphie nodded emphatically. "I know, I could hardly believe it myself. Weird huh?"
Kairi looked heartbroken. "This can't be happening! Sora was supposed to be my true love. We were supposed to meet, fall inexplicably in love, and have lots and lots of kids! How is that gonna happen now?!"
"Calm down Kairi. He was never going to be your 'true love' or whatever anyway." Riku looked skeptically at the two girls freaking out before him. "And I told you months ago that he's was the gayest thing I've ever seen."
Kairi glared at her friend. "You only said that because he can dance and you can't." She turned back to Selphie. "Where did you hear about this?"
Kairi and Selphie delved deeply into a conversation about how Sora had evidently admitted he was gay on Oprah, as Riku rolled his eyes at them, mumbling something about being able to dance just fine.
Sora was, as mentioned before, the star of one of the most popular teeny-bopper movies out there; College Melody. It was about two teens, freshmen in college, who met through singing and fell in love, despite the disdain of their friends, and eventually showed the whole school that it was okay to be an individual.
Riku found the whole thing rather sickening. Though he wouldn't admit it even on pain of death, the movie had been alright in a 'my eyes are burning' kinda way. But that was the first time. When Kairi had insisted it was the best movie ever and rewound and replayed it four times, Riku had finally snapped the remote in half when he had to watch Gabby and Roy (the famed Sora's character) passionately kissing for the twenty seventh time. Kairi had been the one counting, not Riku.
A sequel was coming out soon, so the main cast had been asked to do an interview on Oprah, where the apparent disaster had struck. Selphie was just now relating her horror at Sora's unabashed confession to the world.
"And then Victoria totally flipped, cuz, y'know, he's supposed to be dating her and all, and he just came out like that in front of everybody, it's was amazing!" Kairi glared at Selphie's amusement. "Amazing in a really horrible way, but still amazing."
Roxas was walking toward their table, but slowed when he came within hearing distance of Kairi and Selphie. Riku tipped back in his chair and yanked the blonde into a seat next to himself.
"Don't even think about ditching me," Riku warned him. "I need to have somebody with a properly functioning brain." The girls shot him a resentful look before returning to their gossip. Roxas and Riku glanced at each other, a silent agreement that females were psychotic.
"Oh, and! And! Apparently, Sora's going out with this guy named Axel, who's a model!"
Kairi groaned in despair. "How am I supposed to compete with a professional model?!" She covered her face and slumped down in her chair, still moaning.
Riku made an exasperated noise. "This guy is a super star, totally untouchable by the likes of such lowly scum as us high schoolers. What are you whining about? You're never gonna meet him anyway."
Both Selphie and Kairi glared at him intensely. Roxas sniggered and chose to pay attention to his food rather than the argument he saw coming. Not that lumpy mac-and-cheese was all that interesting, but he didn't want to be hit by flying angst.
"Riku, why do you always have to put us down? You're such a jerk!" Kairi pouted at the silver haired boy. There was no reaction except for a roll of the eyes.
"Kairi, why do you have to delude yourself into thinking we're all somehow special and wonderful in our own way? You're such an optimist!"
There was metaphoric hissing and spitting, pain and tears. By the end of lunch, Kairi and Riku were still fighting, while Roxas and Selphie were wondering at their friends' stupidity. Riku was holding fast to the statements that he had told Kairi ages ago that Sora was gay and that Kairi was wasting her time pining over him, while Kairi was yelling that Riku was just jealous of Sora and being spiteful and pessimistic about the whole topic.
At some point, Kairi seemed to be hit with an epiphany. She gasped and grabbed Selphie. "Sora's not gay! He's just doing one of those publicity stunts that actors are forced to do! That's it!" She turned on Riku with a triumphant smirk. "Hah!" she said, sticking out her tongue at him.
He didn't look like he'd been beaten. "Kairi, you've just gotta accept that, although he's been in there awhile, closets aren't all that comfortable. He was bound to leave it sometime."
Kairi was about to retort, but the bell rang, signally the end of lunch period. Selphie and Roxas pushed Kairi and Riku in opposite directions before the argument could continue. Selphie dragged Kairi off to their Algebra class, mumbling sympathetically about Sora. Roxas didn't have to pull Riku; he was already getting his stuff together and walking toward the door of the lunch room.
Roxas ran a bit to catch up with Riku at the door. "Hey, Riku, what's up with you?" Roxas asked. "You don't normally get this involved in an argument, especially about College Melody. What gives?"
Riku shrugged noncommittally and kicked open the door to the locker rooms. "Dunno. Kairi's optimism is slowly starting to piss me off I guess."
They were starting the dancing unit in PE, which meant the gym was divided up into boys and girls on opposite ends, waiting to be paired with a partner of the opposite sex. The line of girls kept moving back, they were all hoping to get to dance with one of their friends instead of some boy. Anybody dating in the class was standing in the center of the room, having already paired off with their significant other.
Riku was at the end of the line, with only Roxas behind him. They knew full well there were more boys than girls in this class, so they went to the end, knowing they'd be paired up. It wasn't so much that they didn't want to dance with a girl that they didn't want to abandon each other, leaving at least one of them to the mercy of some other disgruntled teenage boy.
The teachers slowly but surely paired off people until only Riku and Roxas remained. One of the teachers scowled at them.
"Dunno how you managed to skip to the back, but it looks like you two have to be partners." He expected there to be complaints, but the boys were used to dealing with this. They'd been in the same PE class with the same people since freshman year.
The teacher harrumphed off, leaving Riku and Roxas to roll their eyes at his back. Waltz music started playing as one of the female teachers tried in vain to be heard over the babble of students. No one could hear the instructions, but they'd all taken the same class for two years, so they knew it already.
Riku was dancing the guy's part, Roxas stuck with the girl's. Riku refused to be anything but the leader. They mostly talked while dancing, interrupted by Roxas' scowls of deepest loathing when he was forced to twirl around as the dance demanded.
"So we're stuck dancing again," Roxas said, stating the obvious. "Remind me again why I took PE this year."
"Because," Riku drawled, "your parents refused to let you escape some sort of physical activity even though you put up a valiant argument against their tyranny. Spin."
Roxas spun, glowering at Riku as though it were his fault. "I hate that. Well, at least one of us could have escaped," he said, glaring at Riku slightly.
"Except one of us decided he enjoyed sleep more than passing a PE class at seven twenty in the morning." Riku had missed almost every class but the first few in favor of sleeping in until second period.
A teacher came to inspect them just then, complimenting Riku on his dance steps and advising Roxas to try stepping less stiffly. Roxas nodded and politely replied before the teacher walked off, when he narrowed his eyes.
"Not like I actually enjoy dancing," he said to the teacher's retreating back. "Unlike some people."
Riku shrugged. "Don't have to enjoy it to be good at it. Spin again. You just have to move past your jealousy and accept that you suck at dancing and I don't."
Roxas glared at him again before tipping his head back to yell at the ceiling. "I am so bored! I hate this unit!"
Riku laughed. "We have two minutes left of class, your salvation is nigh."
"And thank God for that."
Sora didn't particularly enjoy acting, but there was very little he disliked, so he supposed it was alright for a temporary career. But the seventeen year old icon didn't plan on staying in acting for the rest of his life. He wanted to drop out of the media eye as soon as filming for College Melody II was finished, which should be about two weeks from now.
He sighed as he slipped below the surface of his bubble bath, eyes just peering over the tops of the translucent pink fizz. He did enjoy the pampering he received as a high-paid movie star, but he hated the price of it all. Since he'd been picked out by an agency scout two and a half years ago, Sora had felt totally cut off from reality.
The world of the high class was always content and sparkling, while the worst parts of it were ignored. Sora had been forced to lose weight, dye his hair, and change his overall attitude for his career and he didn't like it at all. He really wanted to go back to high school and the rest of his normal life. But he wasn't really sure how.
Then he'd met Axel. Sora smiled under the surface of the water. Axel was different from the rest of pop culture as Sora knew it. He was a model, had been for nearly four years, and one year older than Sora.
Axel didn't listen to anyone, including his own conscience. He did whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted, with whomever he wanted. Which was how he and Sora had met.
Unbeknownst to either one, Axel had been Sora's upstairs neighbor for months. He had the apartment directly above Sora's and had for as long as Sora had lived there. It was about a month ago when Axel had jumped through Sora's window.
Sometime in the middle of the day, Sora had ditched from the shooting of College Melody to go home for a nap. He'd just settled into his massive pile of blankets when something came crashing through his window, causing him to shoot up in alarm.
By the time he got into the living room, Sora found a mass of skinny limbs and fiery hair untangling itself on his floor. Axel had looked up at him without any trace of surprise or remorse at crashing through a stranger's window. He'd simply walked up to Sora, one hand extended.
"I'm Axel. Got it memorized?"
Sora had been taken aback by the abrupt introduction. After a bit of confusion, Axel and Sora had made their proper introductions, then Axel had explained exactly why he'd come soaring through Sora's front window. Apparently, he'd broken up with his (now ex)girlfriend Larxene, a renowned pop singer. She'd reacted…badly, to say the least. She'd told Axel he wasn't going to leave her, when that hadn't worked well, she'd pulled out an array of throwing knives from God-knows-where and began hurling them at Axel. He'd escaped out the window and swung himself into Sora's apartment.
So they'd become quick friends. After a while, Axel started hitting on Sora, who responded shyly at first, then with more enthusiasm. He'd officially broken up with Victoria, his co-star on College Melody, last week. He and Axel had been going out ever since.
And now the public knew about it. Sora's agent had warned him about keeping his relationship with Axel under wraps, but there seemed to be something about Oprah that made people want to express their secrets on national television. That and Axel had been pretty pissed when Sora was told to keep his private life a secret.
Axel had preached for almost an hour about how his fans should be able to accept him however he was, and no one should be forced to hide themselves, especially in the acting business. It had taken Sora tackling the red head around the waist to shut him up.
Sora sunk completely below the water and watched as his hair floated around him, all the hair products of earlier today washed out. He hated that they'd forced him to dye it blonde. He was a natural brunette, so his hair had to be bleached every week or so to make sure his roots wouldn't show for his part in College Melody II.
Coming up from the water, Sora smiled to himself again. In just two weeks, he and Axel would be leaving LA for a small town in northern California near San Francisco. They would be attending high school together, Sora a junior, Axel a senior. They'd finally get back to normal life. At least, Sora hoped they would.
Victoria brushed her hair in front of a full-length mirror, scowling at her reflection. She was supposed to be asleep by now to get plenty of rest for shooting starting at six tomorrow morning, but she couldn't sleep.
It had been only yesterday that the Oprah fiasco had happened. When Sora had announced the fact that he was gay, Victoria had been surprised. Not because she didn't know he was gay, but because he'd said it on national television. She'd freaked out, as any proper girlfriend would (though they'd broken up days ago).Running her fingers through flawless chocolate curls, she recalled how Sora had been so sweet when he'd told her about Axel. He'd been the perfect gentleman about everything, taking full responsibility for his actions and saying he hoped they could still be friends though he knew the entire thing was his fault.
It had gotten her to confess what she'd done as well. For the past few weeks before Sora broke up with her, Victoria had been seeing Zac, a friend from her previous acting school, behind Sora's back. She'd told Sora, and, surprisingly, they'd both been able to have a laugh about the whole thing, saying neither was angry and they could still be on good terms.
Victoria continued to scowl at her mirror, deep in thought. She didn't like Axel. He seemed wrong for Sora, like someday Sora would be hurt by him. Victoria knew it wasn't her place to tell Sora she didn't approve of his boyfriend, but she still worried about him. They were good friends, had been for the past two years, and she felt the need to be protective of him.
Putting down her brush, Victoria stood to get in bed. She honestly wished the best for Sora. She had the feeling Axel wasn't 'the one' for Sora, but she truly hoped the boy would find him one day.
"Cut! And print!"
With the order, chaos erupted on set. Cameras were moved, scenery adjusted, film produced.
"Great job, Sora. You've got Roy's character down to an art! Victoria, you were beautiful, great passion!" The director, Demyx, walked forward to congratulate the actors on a job well-done. "Oh, Victoria, you've got an interview waiting by the way. They've been here for an hour."
Victoria gave him a disbelieving look and ran off, shouting, "Why didn't you tell me earlier?!"
Demyx shrugged as the girl ran off, then turned back to Sora. "You know, I hate that this is our last shoot together."
"What are you talking about?" Sora asked, confused. They still had two more days of filming left.
"I'm leaving tonight," Demyx explained. "My parents are putting me back in high school. They feel I should finish getting my high school diploma before I turn twenty." Demyx had begged his parents into letting him go into directing before he'd finished his senior year of high school. Apparently they wanted to remedy the fact that Demyx had yet to graduate high school.
Sora's face fell. "Demyx! Why didn't you tell me? I won't see you in like…forever!"
Demyx laughed. "Don't worry, I'll use my high school graduate skills to track you down eventually. I'm just sorry I can't be here for your going away party."
Sora looked confused. "I'm not having a party."
"Oh, yeah," Demyx said slowly. "I wasn't supposed to tell you about that. Um, just, when they yell surprise, act surprised okay? Sorry."
Sora laughed before hugging Demyx around the middle. "I'm gonna miss you, Demyx."
The taller blonde smiled down at Sora. "Yeah, I'll miss you too, kid." He pushed Sora away after a moment. "So give me call or something so I know Axel hasn't raped you and left you for dead."
Sora blushed. "Demyx!"
"What?" he asked, shrugging nonchalantly. "I knew Axel before you did. I wouldn't put it past him."
Sora glared at Demyx and punched him lightly on the arm. Demyx winced in mock pain. "Alright! Fine, I'll keep my comments on your boyfriend to a minimum."
"Good," Sora said, nodding for emphasis.
"So," Demyx said after a moment, "You wanna get Chinese?"
Sora glanced around at the people as he left the San Francisco airport. It was almost like LA, except a not as warm. There were all sorts of people, including a man covered in silver paint doing the robot.
The closest Sora had been to San Francisco was when he'd gone to visit his family a few hours north of LA when he was twelve. It was a totally new experience. There seemed to be just as many weirdoes, but the atmosphere was more costal in a fisherman's wharf way than a surfer's paradise way like LA had been.
Axel had bought a red corvette, insisting that they would need a car anyway, so they may as well get a good one. He was now zooming northward through the streets of the city. Sora had his head stuck out the window, staring at different things, marveling at how the streets were built directly onto the rising and falling hills.
After a while, Axel pulled Sora back into the car and rolled up the window. "Come on, Sora. We've got a while to sight-see. Let's just get to the right city first."
Sora pouted. "But it's so pretty here."
Axel laughed and reached out to ruffle his hair. He made a face. "It's gonna take a while for me to get used to your hair. I've always known you as a blonde."
Sora had managed to find a hair dresser at the last minute who was able to dye his hair the exact shade of his natural hair color. In a few months, his hair would be back to its natural state, but for now it was dyed to look like it.
He pushed away Axel's hand lightly. "Hey, leave it alone. I've finally got my real hair back. Almost."
"Well," Axel started, "you know I think you look sexy either way." He leaned over to kiss Sora's neck, making the boy squirm and flush.
"Axel! Pay attention!" They narrowly avoided a large pickup truck, whose owner honked at them. Axel calmly flipped him the bird and returned to the middle of the lane. "Ah, relax, I know what I'm doing."
Kairi had been obsessed with Sora since she'd first seen College Melody. When the beautiful blonde boy had appeared on-screen, Kairi had felt her heart stop for a moment. He was perfect. Sora was gorgeous, funny, kind, a good actor, all she could ever want.
So the Sora-mania had begun. Kairi knew everything there was to know about the boy. She knew his favorite color, his shoe size, his birthday, his middle name, what flavor toothpaste he preferred, and his mother's maiden name. So she was quite surprised when he showed up in her first period class, when she hadn't known he was anywhere near her town.
She did the proper thing, hyperventilating quickly, before realizing why she was the only one doing so. Sora had dyed his hair back to its original chocolate brown color and was wearing the baggiest clothes possible so as not to be recognized.
Kairi was quite disappointed in her fellow classmates, the girls anyway. She knew full well that over three fourths of the female population loved Sora as Roy from College Melody, yet it only took some hair dye and a wardrobe change to fool them. But at least that gave Kairi the opportunity to be the only one to volunteer the seat next to her for the new student in English class.
Sora smiled at her and Kairi felt like she would melt. How could they possibly think Sora was just some ordinary kid with a smile like that? It was preposterous!
As Sora took a seat next to Kairi, she decided to forgo English today in favor of badgering Sora.
"I know who you are," she said quietly.
Sora looked up in surprise. "What?"
"I know who you are," Kairi repeated. "You're Sora, the Sora. From College Melody. Aren't you?"
Sora's expression became strained. "Don't tell anyone please! I just want to be a normal guy, you know?" he pleaded. "Promise you won't tell!" He grabbed Kairi's hands, making her swoon inside.
"Alright," she said, slightly light-headed. "But can I tell my friends? I promise they won't rat you out! But you do need some people to show around right?"
Sora nodded hesitantly and let go of her hands. "I guess that's fine. I just don't want to make a big scene or anything."
"Got it. I'm Kairi, by the way," she said, putting out a hand to shake. Sora took her hand and shook.
"You already know who I am, so nice to meet you Kairi." He smiled. Maybe this being-normal thing wouldn't be as hazardous as he'd thought.
Selphie freaked out when Kairi told her about Sora during their shared Algebra class. When Selphie squealed, the teacher looked sternly at the girls at the back of her class, but continued her explanation of frequency distribution.
"Are you serious?" Selphie whispered excitedly. "Sora's really at our school?!"
Kairi nodded vigorously. "He sits next to me in English class."
Selphie's eyes widened. "You are the luckiest girl I know. Now maybe you can figure out if he's gay or not."
Kairi rolled her eyes. "I thought we already agreed that was a publicity stunt," she reminded Selphie.
"Well, you never know," Selphie said, shrugging. "The cute ones always seem to turn out to be homos."
Kairi glared at her and whacked her lightly on the arm. "Appearance means nothing. I mean, come on, Riku has long flowing silver hair and he's straight."
Selphie smirked. "Are you implying that Riku is cute?" she asked mischievously.
Kairi glared at her. "Ew, no. I'm just saying that just because a guy is really cute, though some would disagree on those opinions, it doesn't mean they are gay necessarily."
Selphie laughed softly. "You're still saying Riku's cute," she pointed out.
Kairi made an exasperated noise. "I'm not gonna lie and say he's ugly, but I, for one, don't like him."
Selphie smiled widely. "Good, cuz I think he's totally hot!"
"Ew, Selphie! How could you?" Kairi asked, exasperated. "Almost the entire female population of the school thinks he's a god on earth, and now you too?!"
Selphie made a face. "I didn't say that. I just think he's hot is all. No harm in enjoying God's gifts."
"Whatever," Kairi said, rolling her eyes. "Just promise me you won't turn to the dark side. Oh! Speaking of promises, you can't tell any else about Sora. He made me swear."
"You seriously think I'd tell other people?" Selphie asked in mock disbelief. "No way am I sharing our discovery with those other girls. They'd dig their little claws into him faster than a kitten on catnip."
"Good," Kairi said, smiling. "It'll be our little secret, along with Riku and Roxas."
"You told them?!" Selphie asked.
"Well, yeah," Kairi said shrugging. "They have the same PE class, so I thought they could show him around. And besides, I couldn't resist rubbing Riku's smug nose in it."
At that moment, Sora was, in fact, just meeting Riku. He'd been instructed by Kairi that Riku would help him out in PE. She'd also said Riku was a big fan of Sora and the College Melody movies.
Sora soon learned that was a lie. Riku had glared at him before doing anything else. When he'd put out a hand to shake, it seemed more threatening than welcoming. Sora was half afraid Riku would crush his fingers if they shook hands, but Riku had enough self control not to do that.
"Um, hi," Sora said weakly. Riku still looked very unhappy. "I'm Sora. You must be Riku."
"Yeah," he said shortly. He stood for a moment, then turned abruptly to walk towards the locker room. Sora took a moment to catch up to him, jogging a bit to do so.
"Hey!" Sora said, pouting at the taller boy. "Don't just walk away."
"In case you weren't aware," Riku started coldly, "we normal kids have to be in class on time. Though I'm sure you'd be fine even if you didn't show up. Speaking of which, why don't you go with that plan and leave me the hell alone?"
Sora looked taken aback and more than a little offended. He was about to say something when he was interrupted by shouting. Both he and Riku turned to look behind them for the source of the yelling.
A few feet behind them a scene was developing. On the ground was a very surprised Axel, with an offended Roxas standing above him. Roxas was flushed crimson and rubbing the right side of his neck as if he waned to scrape off the skin itself. He was glaring forcefully at Axel with his free hand still balled into a fist.
"What the hell is your problem?!" Axel shouted at the blonde above him.
Roxas looked even angrier, if possible. "My problem?" he asked , voice full of barely contained rage. "You want to know my problem? My problem is that I was just sexually assaulted from out of nowhere!"
"Oh, you liked it," Axel said easily, causing Roxas to turn a deeper shade of red. "Besides, I wasn't going for you. I thought you were someone else." Axel finally stood up, brushing himself off. "Nice punch though," he said to Roxas, who made indignant noises in response.
Sora chose now to run up between the two. "Axel!" he shouted. The red head looked up, pleasantly surprised. "What happened?"
"He attacked me!" Roxas shouted, pointing an accusing finger at Axel..
Axel rolled his eyes in response. "I thought he was you," he said, grabbing Sora and pulling the smaller boy toward him. "I told you it would take me a while to get used to that hair. He looks like you from behind." He kissed Sora lightly on the mouth, causing the boy to blush and return it slightly.
"No public displays of affection on school grounds!" One of the PE teachers had come running when someone had told her about a fight outside the locker rooms. She now glared at the two boys, one blushing at his feet, the other giving her a look that clear said, 'fuck off'. "Now all of you get to class before you all get tardies!"
The crowd of teenagers dispersed to their proper locker rooms to get ready for PE, until only Riku, Roxas, Sora, and Axel remained. Riku was the first to leave, giving the other three a look of disdain before stalking off to the locker room.
"What's stuck up his ass?" Axel asked in an undertone.
Roxas glared at him. "Shut up," he said in defense of his friend. He then followed Riku, Sora and Axel trailing after him.
"Hold on!" Sora said after a moment. Roxas turned to look at him "What's his problem with me? I barely said two words to him, but it seems like he already hates me."
Roxas paused before answering. "Well, for one, Riku hates your movies, and there's also the fact that Kairi thinks you're the best thing since sliced bread, and then there's the whole gay thing."
Sora looked slightly offended. "So, what? He hates feel-good movies, is jealous, and a homophobe?"
Roxas laughed slightly. "Not completely right. Riku does hate feel-good movies, but he's not jealous of you. He and Kairi never really get along all the way, and she's gloating about the fact that you're here when Riku has told her a thousand times she'd never get the chance to even be in the same room as you. And he's not a homophobe. Him and Kairi had a debate awhile back about whether you were actually gay or just pulling a publicity stunt."
"So he thinks I'm a poser?" Sora asked, confused. "But I really am dating Axel."
"No, no, no," Roxas said, shaking his head. "Riku's been saying you were gay since he first saw College Melody. Kairi's the one who came up with the publicity stunt idea. Riku's just pissed that Kairi still won't admit he was right."
Sora nodded in understanding. At least Riku was mad at mostly Kairi, not him. Sora hated it when people were mad at him.
They were on the last week of the dance unit in PE, reviewing dances before the test next week. The test consisted of each pair being asked to demonstrate a dance for thirty seconds, then receiving either pass or fail. Everyone passed.
Sora and Axel acted as Riku and Roxas' shadows in the line-forming process, standing behind them at the end of the line. When all the girls had been paired with a boy, Riku and Roxas automatically paired up. But the teacher had other ideas.
"Oh no," he said, splitting up the boys. "You two have been partners all week, it's time to mix it up."
Riku glared at the teacher, knowing what he had in mind. "I am not dancing with either one of them," he said flatly, pointing at Sora and Axel, who looked slightly taken aback.
"Oh yes, you are," the teacher said, glaring right back at Riku. "You're dancing with one of them, or you can repeat this class next year."
"You can't do that!" Riku shouted.
"I can, and I will. Now chose a partner." The teacher crossed his arms and waited.
Riku and Roxas turned to Sora and Axel.
"Alright, here's the deal," Riku said, business-like. "I'm always lead, so whoever's my partner, deal with it."
Axel glared at him. "No way I'm being chick."
"Fine!" the teacher said. "Then you two are partners," he said, pushing Roxas towards Axel. "And same goes for you." He pointed at Sora and Riku. "Now get dancing." He stalked off.
After a few moments of awkward silence, Axel said, "So. You always dance the girl's part?" Roxas whacked him in the arm and dragged him into dancing position.
"Just shut up and let me teach you. You probably suck at this."
As Axel and Roxas fought for control, though Axel was technically supposed to be leading, Sora gave Riku a shy smile, which Riku rolled his eyes at. This was going to be a long class.
Riku stepped forward as Sora seemed too shy to do so. Sora apparently knew the correct position, as he looked comfortable in the stance. Riku mentally groaned. Sora was just going to be good at everything wasn't he? That used to be Riku's job, but Sora seemed to be taking it over.
Riku soon realized he was wrong, Sora had no idea what he was doing past positioning. Riku had to teach him the steps, but he seemed used to dancing the lead part, so he was clumsy for a while.
"Aren't you supposed to be a good dancer or something?" Riku asked sarcastically.
Sora glared at him, before returning to watch his footing. "I'll get it. You just wait."
Riku rolled his eyes. "Yeah, yeah, whatever Superstar." Sora glared at him briefly again.
It took a few minutes, but Sora did get it after a while. Soon he was keeping up with Riku every step of the dance. After a while, Riku started throwing in more complicated steps, trying to throw Sora off. But the brunette seemed able to keep up with pretty much anything now that he had the basic steps down.
A few people actually stopped dancing to stare after a while. Sora and Riku were glaring at each other, doing as many difficult moves as Riku could think of. Sora seemed to be enjoying it immensely, his glare quickly becoming more of a triumphant smirk. Riku, on the other hand, was becoming infuriated by Sora's ability to keep up with him.
In phys ed, students were supposed to learn basic dancing. Nothing complex, just enough so that they might have some idea of what they were doing if they ever needed to go to a formal dance. Riku and Sora were going beyond that into the realm of the contest-worthy. By the time the song was coming to an end, the two boys were the only ones dancing.
The song ended with a flourish, Riku sending Sora into a spin-out before pulling him forcefully back in, then tipping the smaller boy back steeply. Sora was smiling brilliantly by now. When the song ended, he shot Riku a radiant smile, chest heaving from the dance.
Riku was breathing deeply as well, though not as much as Sora. How had Sora been able to keep up with him? He'd only learned the basic steps at the beginning of class.
The bell rang. Riku seemed to snap out of it, pulling Sora abruptly upright. He walked quickly to the locker rooms, leaving Sora frowning slightly behind him. Axel and Roxas ran up to him, exclaiming about Sora and Riku's dancing. Sora didn't really hear them.
He ran off after Riku without warning, leaving Axel and Roxas behind. Both boys stared after him a moment, turned to each other, and shrugged.
By the time Sora got into the locker room, Riku was angrily removing his PE shirt on the way to his locker. Sora paused a moment to admire the way Riku's back looked, wondering if the front was even nicer, before shaking his head and resuming his annoyed expression.
"Why are you mad at me?" Sora shouted at Riku. "What did I do?"
Riku bent down to open his locker, not saying anything. He hadn't bothered with locking it, so he just opened it and threw his shirt inside.
Sora made an exasperated noise and grabbed at his hair in frustration. "Why do hate me so much?"
Riku paused and sighed, leaning his forehead against the top of his locker. He looked up at Sora with less anger and more weariness. "I'm not mad at you. I'm just mad."
"Well. What are you mad about?" Sora asked. "Maybe I can help."
"It's not nothing, you're mad about something," Sora pointed out.
"Look, I just met you today," Riku said, resuming getting dressed. "If I don't want to confide my problems to you right this minute, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise."
Sora looked concerned. It had been only today that he and Riku had met, but it felt like longer to Sora. Ever since he'd started filming the College Melody movies, a lot of Sora's experience and communication with people had been through dance. From his own experience, Sora knew people talked through their dancing, whether they were aware of it or not. He also knew that two people could not dance the way he and Riku had without something behind it.
Be it anger, love, grief, or some other emotion, there was always something behind that sort of dancing. And Sora was going to find out what this dance had been about. Riku was going to be his friend, whether he liked it or not.
Sora and Axel were starting to get used to the whole high school thing within a few days. They'd both gone to public schools before, so it was still sort of familiar. By the third day, they could both navigate pretty well around the school. Axel was using Roxas as a crutch in the three classes they shared, and Sora had Kairi instructing him most of the time, but they could manage on their own.
At one point, Sora decided to use lunch to explore the parts of the school he hadn't seen yet. Kairi and Selphie graciously offered to show him around, and Axel looked up, checking to see if Sora wanted him to come along, but Sora wanted to go exploring on his own.
There were two main parts of campus. The lower campus included the front office, history building, science building, and English building. The upper half of campus had the gym, library, student center, and math building. Even farther past this were the portables and art rooms. Sora had never been past the student center.
Sora started with the first art room. Looking through the window, he saw the walls were plastered with sketches and paintings from students. A few girls were sitting at the tables in the middle of the room. There were two brunettes and one blonde girl, all of them bent over sketch books.
Knocking lightly, Sora let himself in. The girls looked up in mild surprise, but went back to what they were doing almost immediately.
"I'm just checking out the art rooms," Sora explained. The girls nodded, ignoring him for the most part. Sora went about inspecting the drawings on the walls. He stopped at one picture, a long, winding staircase drawn from above. "Nice," he said softly. "Cool perspective."
"That's mine." Sora looked over to see it was the blonde girl who had spoken. She had left her chair and was smoothing her white skirt. She walked towards him. "I did this last year," she said. "I'm Naminé, by the way."
"Sora," he said. Naminé answered with a nod. They stood in silence, looking at the walls of art for a while before Naminé's friends called her back over. "Well, it's nice to meet you," Naminé said, walking back to her chair.
Sora left after that. He moved on to the music room, the largest room in the school. He looked in the window first, but didn't see anyone, so walked in. He heard music, a string instrument it sounded like, when he walked in. Sora stopped, trying to figure out where the sound was coming from, then walking in the direction of the music to a door to a side room.
When Sora looked in through a crack in the door, he jumped and shoved the door open all the way. The musician stopped playing.
"Demyx?!" Sora ran to the tall blonde, hugging him forcefully enough to send him back into his chair. "What are you doing here? Not that I'm not happy to see you, but, why are you here of all places?"
Demyx looked down at Sora, smiling widely. "Didn't you know? I grew up around here."
Sora pouted at him. "Of course I didn't know. It's not like you gave huge monologues on your childhood when I was around."
"Actually, I did," Demyx pointed out. "I talked about this place all the time."
"Oh," Sora said, turning a very slight shade of pink. "Well then, you can't expect me to pay attention. But, anyway, it's great to see you!" He squeezed Demyx's waist harder, causing the blonde to wheeze.
"Okay, Sora, I need to breathe," Demyx said, prying Sora off of him. "But look at you! Your hair's back to normal. And why are you here? At least I have a good reason."
Sora laughed. "Yeah. Well, me and Axel just chose a random high school out of a list, and that was it." He shrugged. "Weird coincidence, huh? Oh, wait! We should tell Axel you're here! Come on!"
Sora grabbed at Demyx, but he insisted on putting away his sitar, taking a while to loving place it back in its case, before letting Sora lead him away. He was dragged to a table with six people seated around it. There seemed to be an argument between two of them.
"What do you need money for?" Riku asked of someone Sora hadn't met. He was about an inch shorter than Riku, with silvery lavender hair and an apathetic, but slightly irritated expression.
"Because," he explained, "I'm hungry and I don't have money. Now give me ten dollars, so I can leave."
Riku rolled his eyes at him in a gesture Sora thought looked very brotherly. "Why should I give you my hard-earned cash?" he said, stalling.
The other boy glared slightly, then adopted a deceitfully sweet grin. "Oh, I guess you don't have to give me any money. But then again I guess I don't have to keep these," (Here he waved a picture in front of Riku's nose) "to myself either, now do I?"
Sora hadn't been able to see what the picture was, but whatever it was made Riku blanch. "You wouldn't."
"Well, if I don't eat properly, I might not be as focused. I might accidentally slip a picture onto a photocopier and accidentally press a button, producing enough copies to fill the entire school." He smirked at Riku. "But then, you know, if I weren't so spaced from lack of food, I might pay attention better."
Sora was convinced the two were brothers, Riku probably the younger. The presumed older brother put out a hand for the money he knew was coming to him. A moment later, Riku grumblingly placed two five dollar bills in the proffered hand.
"Thanks, little bro," the other boy said teasingly.
Riku glared. "Any time, Zexion," he said through gritted teeth.
Zexion smirked before turning to leave. He stopped when he noticed there was a body in his way. Demyx had, for some reason or another, sidestepped directly into the shorter boy's path. He was now looking very nervous, like he wanted to move, but simply couldn't.
The slate haired boy gave him a patronizing look, followed very quickly by a more appraising one. Demyx's face turned a very subtle pink as a pair of cobalt eyes looked him up and down.
"Hi, I'm Demyx!" he practically shouted in the space of an awkward silence. He put out a hand to shake.
"Zexion," the other boy replied. He barely touched Demyx's hand, as if afraid the taller blonde might do something drastic. He was semi right. Demyx grabbed onto his hand firmly and shook.
"Nice to meet you," he said beaming.
Zexion gave a nervous half-laugh. "Uh, you gonna let go of me?" he asked, pulling slightly on the hand still held in Demyx's. Demyx immediately dropped it, turning that interesting shade of pink once again.
Zexion gave first Demyx, then the entire table a weird look before walking away. Demyx stared after him, having to be pulled into a seat by Sora.
"Who is he?" Demyx asked, slightly urgent.
Everyone but Axel looked at Sora questioningly. Who was this weirdo he'd dragged into their midst? "Um, everybody, this is Demyx. He's the director I worked with."
Everyone waved slightly, still not sure what to make of the blonde.
"Yeah, hi," Demyx said quickly. "But seriously, who was that guy?" He glanced at Sora, who shrugged.
"I dunno, that's the first I've seen of him."
"He my brother," Riku said, sounding slightly bitter. "My older, conniving, I-am-holier-than-thou brother." He glared at the space in front of him. "My stupid older brother who likes to steal my money because he can't make any himself."
"Ah," Demyx said, sounding a little sage-like. "I see. So, how old is this brother of yours?" he asked, more calmly this time.
"Just turned eighteen last month," Riku answered.
"So he's legal then?" Demyx said. Sora and Riku so didn't like that look in his eye. Axel found it amusing.
"Um, should we be fearing for Zexion, right now?" Kairi asked uncertainly.
"No, no, no!" Demyx said, waving her off. "I'm just curious is all. Speaking of which, I think I'd like to go talk to Zexy." Demyx abruptly left the table and walked quickly in the direction Zexion had left.
All the occupants of the table stared after him.
"Did he just call your brother Zexy?" Roxas asked in disbelief.
Sora answered first with, "Demyx is…a character. But don't worry, he's harmless."
Riku shrugged. "Well, if he's giving Zexion hell, then he's fine by me."
Kairi glared at Riku and chucked a tater tot at his head, which he dodged. "You shouldn't be so mean to your brother," she scolded him.
"Yeah, because he's so kind to me," Riku said, rolling his eyes.
As the two got deeper into a battle about Riku's manners, or lack thereof, Sora leaned towards Roxas to whisper, "Does this happen a lot?"
Roxas nodded, nonplussed by the actions of his two best friends. "It's sort of a hobby," he stated calmly, ducking to avoid a paper airplane thrown by a bored Selphie. "You get used to it. There's no way of stopping them. We've tried everything."
Sora frowned. "I'll find a way." He ditched his previous seat between Axel and Roxas for a chair between Riku and Kairi. The brunette plopped down in a chair and smiled up at both teens. Kairi smiled softly back at him, while Riku chose to glare.
"I think," Sora stated. "That since Zexion takes Riku's money, he doesn't deserve ultimate respect like Kairi says. But Riku, you have to keep in mind that one day, you may need your brother's help and he'll be more likely to help you out if you treat him a little nicer." Sora beamed at the two. "Can that work?"
Kairi giggled and hugged Sora who blushed and squirmed away. Riku gave Sora a thoughtful look, but by no means appreciative. "Huh," he said after a moment. "I didn't think you had an intelligent bone in your body."
Sora smirked triumphantly. "In the words of Demyx; You shouldn't judge anyone by appearance."
Roxas and Selphie gaped. Openly. It was the first time a fight between Riku and Kairi had been stopped before lunch ended. How the hell had Sora managed to make them see sense?!
Roxas was so shocked, he didn't even notice Axel stealing his curly fries.
If there was one thing Riku knew with absolute certainty, it was that he was straight. Very straight. Which is why he was very slightly annoyed with himself at the moment.
Because, in any circumstances, normal, straight, teenage boys did not start having feelings for less normal, and considerably less straight teenage actors. It simply didn't happen. But unfortunately for Riku, it did.
For the past few days, Riku had been exposed to a lot of Sora. And by a lot, he meant enough to fill almost every moment of class for every day of the week. At first, it had irritated him greatly. He didn't like the boy at all. He didn't want to get to know him, he didn't even want to look at him.
But in the space of a few days, Riku had found himself wanting just those things. Which was not good at all. Personally, Riku blamed it on his stupid PE teacher. Ever since that first day where he and Sora had been forced to be partners, everything had slowly started crumbling around Riku's ears. God, he hated dancing.
But really, it shouldn't be that much of a problem. Riku still had girls flirting with him every day, and he responded, if not enthusiastically, then adequately. He didn't start acting weird around the brunette. He didn't even think it was anything that would last more than a few days at most. Besides, Riku was a teenage boy, as previously mentioned, and as such, he would probably go through all sorts of hormonal imbalances that would make him do crazy, stupid things. This was most likely just one of those things.
Because honestly, Riku was very straight. Straight as a pole, straight as an arrow. But the unfortunate thing about that was that poles were prone to being bent up by reckless teen drivers, and arrows had the tendency to turn at times.
And if all else happened to fail, it wouldn't be all that bad being bi, right?
Axel was a person given to reacting before thinking and acting on any instinct that hit him. This probably wasn't a good thing, as it had gotten him into trouble on multiple occasions. But then, there were a few good things that had happened because of it, so it wasn't all bad.
This particular thing happened to be bad, though. Very bad.
Axel really hadn't meant to do it, honest he hadn't. He was very fond of Sora and didn't want to cause the boy unnecessary grief. In fact, one could say it was all that stupid blonde's fault. But that would be stretching the truth almost to the point of breaking. So it was good that Axel was gifted with a strong imagination to go along with that irrationality of his.
It had been in geometry, in which Roxas was the teacher's assistant. Axel had just about failed the algebra placement test he'd taken upon transferring to the school, so they'd thrown him into Geometry with a bunch of ninth and tenth graders. He was not pleased.
There had been a gigantic free review session for an upcoming test that day, so the room was noisy as students took over the white board and ignored their teacher's encouragement to use their free time wisely. Axel was failing this class. Well, not quite failing, just barely passing with a D-.
And Roxas, being the responsible type, had tried to get his new semi-friend to study at least a little bit. He knew Axel was doing badly, had graded most of his tests, so he graciously offered to teach the red head some of what he was supposed to already have learned.
Axel wasn't too happy with the idea of studying, but he knew Roxas wasn't going to let up without a fight, and besides, he kind of liked the kid. He may as well try to be friendly or whatever.
So he attempted to pay attention, he really did. But then again, Axel probably had every attention disorder known to man, so it was a bit futile anyway. Anyway, regardless, there had been a big problem that day. A very big, bad problem.
As Roxas was explaining how to prove a rhombus was, in fact, a rhombus, he'd leaned forward to point out the crossing parallel lines used in the proof. In the process, a mass of dirty blonde hair had been shoved into Axel's face. Without thinking, Axel had leaned forward slightly and inhaled. Apples? Now why would someone smell like green apples? And since when had fruit smelled that good?
"Um…are you sniffing me?" Axel pulled back when a frosty voice came from beneath the blonde hair. He laughed easily.
"What? I was, uh, trying to see what you were doing," he covered. "Your spikes got in the way."
Roxas eyed him narrowly. "Uh-huh," he answered slowly. He glared at the red head one last time before returning to the proof. "Now, if these lines are…."
Axel had stopped listening. He was watching those lips move. Soft and pink. They kept moving and Axel was positive he was supposed to be paying attention to what they were saying, but a tongue came out to run across those lips. Axel shook his head to clear it, knowing something Bad was going to happen soon. And chances were, he was going to enjoy it.
Roxas was oblivious to Axel's staring as he tried to teach the red head. Which is why he was justifiably surprised when his lesson was abruptly stopped. And Axel didn't taste nearly as disgusting as he would have thought. Roxas still shoved him onto his ass, though.
"What the hell was that?!" he whispered vehemently. Axel was silent for a moment, then
"Oh, the pain!" All heads turned toward Axel as he faked an injury he and Roxas both knew wasn't there. "Ow!"
The teacher rushed to the back of the room. "Are you alright?" she asked worriedly. "What happened?"
"It was an accident," Axel said, rubbing his back with a pained expression. "Roxas didn't mean to." The teacher turned to glare questioningly at Roxas, Axel smirking behind her back.
"Well," she said finally. "You two may go to the office. Axel, you look like you should lie down." She wrote out a pass for the both of them and handed it to Roxas.
"But I- he," Roxas started to protest, but the teacher cut him off.
"The least you could do is walk him to the office," she said, sounding disappointed. "Really, Roxas, I thought better of you."
The blonde sighed and helped the still-complaining Axel to his feet and out the door. It took maybe three and a half seconds before Axel had Roxas shoved against a wall.
"Hey! What the hell are you-!"
Axel grabbed the pass from Roxas' hand, and tore it into pieces. "Now, where were we?" A predatory gleam entered his eyes that had Roxas balking.
"Back off!" he warned, panicky. "What are you doing?! What about Sora?!"
Axel brought one hand up to pin Roxas' wrists above his head and leaned forward to whisper in his ear. "What about him?"
Roxas shivered with…something. "You're…you're dating."
"Kid's obsessed with Riku," Axel answered, planting soft kisses on Roxas' neck. "You can see that as well as I can."
"S-still..." Roxas made a feeble attempt to wriggle his way out of Axel's grasp.
The red head laughed softly. "Exactly, hold still." He finally brought their mouths together, earning a half contained groan from the blonde. Axel smirked and pressed his tongue against the smaller boy's lips, shoving a hand under his shirt at the same time. The resulting gasp gave Axel entrance, as he'd planned.
Roxas, meanwhile, was trying his best not to make any noise or movements. This was becoming increasingly difficult. He finally gave in, thinking it might not be such a bad idea, if it was just trying to push Axel's tongue out of his mouth. So he pushed back. The hand that had gone up his shirt was now wandering towards his lower back, pushing him closer to the red head.
Axel finally backed up a bit when air became absolutely necessary. Both were breathing hard, Axel with a smile on his face, Roxas glaring death.
"You…should not…have done that!" Roxas panted.
Axel smirked at him. "Honestly don't care." He brought one hand up to play with Roxas' hair. "You can't say you didn't enjoy it," he accused.
Roxas spluttered and turned a color somewhere between red and purple. "You! You- argh!" He launched himself at the red head, tackling him to the ground. Axel landed on his back with Roxas straddling his waist.
"Oh, and this isn't suggestive at all," he drawled, smirking at the blonde once again.
"Shut up," Roxas hissed before crashing his mouth into Axel's.
"So, almost midterms already," Sora noted, trying to start a conversation.
Riku made a noise of agreement and continued to search his Chemistry book. Sora groaned and leaned back in his chair. He'd been waiting for Riku to finish studying for half an hour now.
"Are we done yet?" he asked in a whine.
Riku looked up from his book. "Look, Sora. I didn't ask you to come wait for me here." He looked uncomfortable for a moment. "If you wanna leave, then just…go." He hurriedly returned to taking notes on ionic compounds.
Sora sighed. "No, I'll wait, it's just…how can studying take this long!"
Riku laughed slightly at Sora's tone. "Then go find something to entertain yourself. I've got a few more pages left, so maybe ten minutes and we can leave, okay?" He didn't look up, but heard Sora's affirmative, and smiled softly to himself. "Stupid kid," he mumbled under his breath.
Sora walked through the library, looking briefly down different aisles. He came to the teen section and wandered down to the fiction books. He was examining a book titled The Wee Free Men, when he paused at hearing a noise. It sounded like…was that a moan?
Sora flushed and followed the noises, intent on warning their owners to keep it down. He came to the adult mystery section, where he could definitely tell what was going on to be causing those noises.
"Hnn…ah!" Sora blushed harder than before and tried to block out any details. He shuffled his feet to try to drown out anything.
"Um, hello?" he called uncertainly, turning the corner.
"What?!" Sora was met with Zexion, Riku's older brother, glaring at him. Demyx was slumped against the opposite wall, a happy smile on his face. Sora quickly took in their disheveled appearances, and how swollen Demyx's lips looked and began stuttering.
"I w-was gonna t-tell you to k-keep it down," he said uncertainly. "But I-I'll j-just go…" Sora turned and dashed back in the direction he'd come.
Zexion sighed. "Demyx, I told you this was a bad idea. You just can't keep your voice down."
Demyx laughed quietly. "Like you care," he noted.
Sora barreled back to where Riku was, just putting his things away. "Let's go!" he said urgently, tugging on Riku's sleeve. Riku pulled his hand away and continued to pack up.
"What's the hurry? You stealing a book or something?" he asked sarcastically.
"No," Sora answered quickly. "Worse. We need to leave, now!"
"Okay, okay, calm down," Riku said, shouldering his bag. "We can leave now, ya happy?"
"Yes, just go," Sora answered, pulling Riku out the door with him.
A few feet away, Riku stopped and gave Sora a weird look. "Alright, tell me what happened," he demanded bluntly.
Sora made a pained face. "Your brother…and my…Demyx. They were…making out…loudly…."
Riku looked appalled. "And you dragged me out of there?! I could have hit blackmail gold!" He made a frustrated noise, before realizing Sora looked traumatized. "Uh, you okay?" he asked uncertainly.
Sora nodded silently. "They were making…noises…"
Riku looked perplexed and amused. "And why does that scare you so bad?" he asked. "You are gay, so it can't be that."
Sora shrugged. "I guess I was just shocked…I thought Demyx was straight."
Riku laughed out loud. Sora gave him a look that said he didn't appreciate being laughed at.
"How is it that my gaydar works better than yours?" Riku asked, still laughing slightly.
Sora pouted. "Maybe it's because you fear those who are unlike you. And it's your attempt at self defense."
Riku sighed slightly and shrugged. "Nah. I've got a gay friend, and now a gay brother, I may as well get used to it. Nothing to be afraid of."
Sora smiled brightly. "We're friends?"
"Yeah," Riku said. "I guess, why?"
"Well…" Sora fidgeted with his hands. "When I first came, you kinda…hated me."
Riku shrugged. "Well that was before I found out how fun it is to mess with you."
Sora glared playfully at him. "So you only keep me around to make fun of me? That's mean, Riku!"
Riku laughed and slung an arm over the brunette's shoulder. "Ah, Sora, it's what I live for."
They walked in a comfortable silence for a while before Sora piped up. "Where are we going?"
"You're the one who dragged me away from the library," Riku answered. "You decide."
Sora thought for a moment, then, "Can we get ice cream?"
"Do you have money?" Riku asked.
"No…" Sora answered slowly. He pouted, silently pleading with Riku.
Riku sighed. "Fine, I'll buy you ice cream, but don't blame me when you get fat."
"Thanks, Riku!" Sora shouted, hugging him around the waist. "You're the best!"
It was a while before Sora realized the rest of what Riku had said.
"Hey! Are implying something?!"
If there was one thing Riku knew with absolute certainty, it was that he was in love with Sora. To be perfectly honest, Riku couldn't say when it had happened. There was no one moment when Riku thought, I'm falling in love with that idiot. It just sort of…happened.
But of course, there was nothing Riku could do about it. Sora was still dating that red headed bastard. Riku felt justified in using the title of bastard because he knew for certain that Axel was cheating on Sora. It had been sorta hard to miss the make out session between Axel and a certain blonde Riku used to call best friend. Because honestly, who uses the boy's bathroom as a make out location? Weren't there plenty of empty classrooms to keep Riku from being subjected to permanent mental scarring?
Riku asked himself just about every day why, for the love of God, he hadn't told Sora. But then, just when Riku planned on telling him, Sora would give him a goofy smile as if there was nothing wrong in the world. And Riku melted. He couldn't traumatize the poor boy like that. And then what if Sora thought he was lying? What if he hated Riku?
Nope. Sora would just have to find out on his own. And Riku would go on silently loving him until he figured it all out.
Something was not right. Riku couldn't put his finger on it, but there was just something wrong. He glanced over at Sora, sitting next to him in Chemistry. The brunette gave him the usual bright smile, but Riku could tell it wasn't reaching his eyes.
He turned back to face the front of the classroom, and went back to doodling on his notes. Maybe drawing Axel's head on a pike was a bit on the violent and unhealthy side, but really, they were his doodles and nobody was going to see them anyway. Riku started sketching a second pike for Roxas's head, but the bell rang just as he was starting on the blonde spikes.
"You…you knew, didn't you?"
Riku glanced up from putting away his book. Sora's voice sounded dull, hollow even. Not a good sign. He looked up to see Sora holding the notes he'd been drawing on, staring at the space Riku knew Axel and Roxas had been drawn in.
Sora looked up from the paper. He gave Riku an accusing look and shoved the notes at him. "You knew and you didn't tell me?!" Blue eyes glared at him, demanding an explanation. When Riku offered none, Sora turned, shouldering his bag, and walked out. The door slammed behind him. Riku was surprised to find Selphie giving him a disapproving look from the back of the room. A few others were looking just plain confused.
Riku shoved the rest of his stuff into his bag helter-skelter and took off after Sora. He found the brunette crouched behind a tree at the far edge of campus. He heard the bell ring for fifth period to start, but ignored it in favor of the smaller boy.
"Sora, I'm sorry," Riku started, kneeling to Sora's level.
Sora's eyes had gone from dull to electric blue when he glared up at Riku. "Why wouldn't you tell me?" he asked accusingly. "Were you trying to help keep it a secret? I thought we were friends. Why wouldn't you tell me if you knew?"
Riku sighed. "So I guess you found out about Axel and Roxas, huh?"
Sora neglected to answer and instead intensified his glare.
"I wasn't trying to help them," Riku said, explaining as best he could. "I didn't even know until a few days ago, and that was an accident." Sora said nothing. "How'd you find out?"
"What do you care?" Sora answered, playing with a leaf on the ground.
Riku tried not to growl in response. "Sora, I'm trying to be nice, and you're not making it easy."
That hot blue gaze turned back on him full force. "Well, maybe I don't want to make it easy for you. Maybe I want to be a bitter little teenager and maybe I want you to hurt as much as I do. Maybe I want you to actually give a damn and maybe I want…argh!" He collapsed on himself, burying his head between his knees. "Go away," he said weakly after a few moments.
Riku was still a bit shell shocked from the previous outburst. "Sora, I do give a damn, as you so nicely put it. You think I want to see you like this? You're my friend, I care." More than you know.
Sora sniffed and kept his head down. "Why…why didn't you tell me then?"
Riku resisted groaning, just barely. "Because I….because you're….because I didn't want you to get hurt," he answered weakly.
"Didn't want me hurt?" Sora asked, disbelieving. "What do you think this is, happiness? What are you talking about?"
"Well, I…I didn't know if you would believe me," Riku answered lamely. "And I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I didn't want you to hate me or something. That, and you're so…happy. All the time. I didn't want to do anything to ruin it."
Sora looked up from his knees with a watery smile. "That actually…makes me feel a little better," he said haltingly. "Keep going, maybe I'll forget I'm depressed."
Riku laughed, if a bit bitterly. "Yeah, sure. I'll keep spilling my sappy guts, but only cause you're my best friend."
Sora's smile gained a little strength. "Well, then I guess I should tell you why this is the worst I've ever felt in my life."
Riku looked concerned. "What else happened?"
"Nothing happened, per say," Sora answered evasively. "More like something is."
"I don't follow," Riku said bluntly.
"It's more of a something I didn't know was happening until it was already done." Sora paused as if searching for the right words. "First I should say, the way I found out about Axel and Roxas is they told me. Well, Axel told me really, but Roxas was there. They were both really guilty, and they wanted to tell me what was happening before things really got out of hand." He paused again, thinking to himself. "I guess I appreciate the honesty."
"You're more forgiving than I am," Riku added. "I'm planning on kicking some major ass when you're feeling better."
Sora laughed. "Thanks, but don't. See, the reason I feel so bad is…I don't."
Riku waited for him to continue the sentence, but he didn't. "Wait, what?"
"I don't feel bad about me and Axel being over. I feel….better. And I'm happy for them, really."
Riku gave him a weird look. Sora was the most forgiving person on the face of the planet, too much so in his opinion. Who's happy when their boyfriend breaks up with them? Honestly.
"And," Sora continued, "I don't feel bad because…I like somebody else."
"Oh." Riku felt something in his chest deflate. "That's…great." Shut up, he forcefully told the small, emo voice in his head saying life was now meaningless. "Um, best of luck winning him over. I'm sure you can."
"There's one problem though," Sora said, voice edging into depressed again. "He's terminally straight."
Riku's inner emo put down its razor blade in hope. "Oh, uh, sorry about that. I guess it's his loss though."
Sora brightened. "You really mean that?" he asked hopefully.
"Sure," Riku answered encouragingly. "You're a great guy and somebody'd be lucky to date you." Riku decided the bad after taste in his mouth was from his mom's cooking and had nothing to with pushing Sora toward someone else.
"You really mean that?" Sora asked a bit more urgently.
"Yeah," Riku answered slowly. Was he saying too much? Had he blown his cover? "Why?"
"Because…close your eyes."
Riku was taken aback. "What? Sora, what does that have to do with…?"
"Just do it," Sora said pleadingly. "Please?"
"Fine," Riku grumbled, closing his eyes. "But I'll kick your ass if this is some kinda-"
He was cut off when he felt a pair of lips covering his own. It was a tentative kiss, and Sora pulled back quickly, but Riku didn't react for a moment. Sora fidgeted nervously with a string on his pants, looking anywhere but at Riku.
"You…you like me?" Riku asked after a few seconds of awkward silence. Sora's gaze jerked up to his face, embarrassment quickly being covered with anger.
"Of course I like you. You think I kiss every hot guy I me-"
This time it was Sora whose words were stopped dead. His eyes widened as Riku leaned forward to kiss him back. He started to pull away, to ask what Riku was thinking, but Riku brought one hand to the back of his neck, pulling him closer.
After a second more, Riku backed off. Sora sat stunned for a moment. Riku laughed softly and reached up to touch his lips.
"Your lips are chapped," he said, completely off-topic. Sora made an indignant noise and punched him in the shoulder.
Riku slid into a seat across from Axel at a lunch table. The red head looked up from his lunch, unconcerned, but then saw who it was and started talking.
"I can see from the way you're trying to telepathically set me on fire that Sora told you what's been going on. Let me first say, in the immortal words, love works in mysterious ways."
"That's God, you moron."
Axel winced at the poison in Riku's voice. "Ah, my bad. But what I'm trying to say is, sometimes we can't control how things work out and we just have to follow-"
Riku cut him off. "Stop explaining. I'd kick your ass from here to New Hampshire, and gladly, except Sora doesn't want me to. Therefore, you are safe. You've also got the back up plan of the fact that I'm probably radiating happiness right now," Axel felt it wise not to correct him on that. "because Sora and I are now going out. So, you're safe."
"Really? That's great news. About you and Sora I mean. Everybody knew you two were gonna-"
Riku took the liberty of cutting him off again. "You're safe where Sora can see. But, just a warning, sleep with one eye open." With that, he grabbed Axel's Mountain Dew and walked away.
Axel stared after him, then shook his head exasperatedly. "Kid's got anger management issues," he said sorrowfully. He reached for his soda, but realized it had been stolen. "Asshole," he mumbled dejectedly.
A few months later
"And the Academy Award for Best Actor goes to…Sora Foster! In College Melody II!"
A round of enthusiastic applause went up. Sora didn't move for a moment, then felt Riku shoving his shoulder and jumped out of his seat. Making his way down the aisle, he could feel his smile growing.
On stage, the announcer handed him the coveted gold statue and stepped aside for him to speak into the mic.
"Um, wow." Sora heard his own voice echoing in the auditorium. "I'd obviously like to thank the academy, as they decided I get to win. And I want to thank every one who worked with me on the College Melody movies. It's really a team effort. And Demyx, our director." He saw Demyx stand up and wave from the crowd before Zexion pulled him back down. "And I think I'll dedicate this, or whatever it is I do, to Riku, cause he's really the best thing that ever happened to me, including winning this. And, uh, I'll miss acting, but at least I got a big award first. Thanks!"
There was another round of applause as Sora left the stage.
A/N: Please review! I'm not so sure about this one... But, as I need to brag about this, I am happy that I finally figured out I can use that grey line. Yeah, I'm pretty close to computer illiterate... Also, I may or may not add an epilogue type thing, so let me know if you think that would be a good idea or not.