Axel smirked, hearing Roxas's cry of pain from below; portalling, he was soon behind Larxene and Marluxia. Larxene turned and feigned a startled expression; Marluxia turned and frowned inquisitively. "See that going on down there?" Axel inquired, voice sprinkled with interested surprise as he pointed past the window. "Honestly, that's pretty low if you ask me."

Larxene glanced behind her and sighed loudly. "Indeed," she agreed. "I was just telling Marluxia how much of a shame it was..."

At that last part, the Graceful Assassin bristled angrily. "How ugly," he growled. "A child like that being challenged by someone like Saix of all people...!"

The Savage Nymph nodded slowly in agreement, eyes half-closed. "You're right... This only proves my point that we have no real order here..."

Looking indignant, Marluxia straightened himself suddenly. Before Axel or Larxene could blink, the pink-haired male jumped only the window-sill and flew outward.

Smirking triumphantly, Larxene turned to Axel. "It's all falling so smoothly into place." Folding her arms across her chest, the woman's fine lips parted slightly at Axel. "You and I shall take this Organization by storm."

"They won't know what hit them," Axel countered mirthfully.

"And that is why they won't even see the terrible storm coming at them," she replied quietly, eyes twinkling like fallen stars.


Marluxia shoved the boy aside and out of harm's way, facing the Luna Diviner himself with his scythe. With unspoken decision, the two males engaged in brutal combat now, blood and fabric flying everywhere. Saix batted and slammed on the eleventh member, while the Assassin retaliated with swings and slices at his enemy. The Diviner hit the man across the side with his heavy weapon, sending the pink-haired man sliding across the floor a ways, red substance in his wake. However, the stubborn man nearly leaped back onto his feet and charged at the blue-haired man once more, delivering a slash down Saix's stomach.

The battle carried on in wrathful vigor, and the boy could only sit where he had been shoved, against the wall. Seeing the two men nearly ripping each other apart, Roxas wondered what he had gotten himself into. His weapon -Oathkeeper this time- still lay in his hand as he watched. Noticing that he was beginning to tremble, the Key Of Destiny tried calming himself by drawing long breaths.

As if sensing his nerve-wracked body, a gentle hand found its way across his shoulder. Not bothering to determine who the hand might belong to, the boy near-instantly grabbed the appendage and held it gratefully. His blue eyes, however, were still fixated on the fighting spectacle before him: Marluxia had unleashed a whirlwind of flashing thorned vines, while Saix snarled and swung his claymore like a madman. Roxas noted how much blood had spilled in the space of a few minutes; he squeezed the hand once more, and it snaked its way across his chest, and he was slowly pulled closer until a body was pressed into his back.

Steadily, Roxas felt himself being propped onto his feet, and another hand held him steady now as well. "Shh...," a soft voice crooned, however dark the tone innately was.

"There's so much," he murmured.

"I understand."

"Am I expected to do that, too...?"

"When you're in a broken order, you'll be expected to do anything."

"Broken... order...?" Roxas repeated oddly. "Am I supposed to fight like that...? Am I supposed to kill, too...?" the boy suddenly asked, eyes wide and wavering.

"Hush, child." Roxas felt a hand cup his chin now. "This is too soon for you. Come with me."

"We're just gonna leave them?" Roxas replied quickly.

"They're men. They're followers. They're hierarchy victims. They'll figure it out."

After this comment, Larxene led Roxas through a softly conjured portal to her room.


"You okay, kid?" Axel asked quietly when Larxene seated the boy on the foot of her bed. "Man, you're lucky Marluxia was around, huh? Saix would've slaughtered you." Roxas's eyes went slightly wide, and Axel scratched the back of his head sheepishly. "Right. You don't wanna hear that, huh? Sorry about that part." His eyes flicked upward, toward Larxene, and he noticed the woman leaning against the wall, arms crossed. He knew that posture; she was brooding again, that was for sure. "Here, little guy," he soothed to Roxas, ruffling the blond hair. "Just relax now. You're fine now."

The boy looked up, eyes swirling with an intensity that pricked Axel in his chest; the sensation was rather cold and unsettling, it made his muscles nearby quiver for a split second. "If you say so...," the boy mumbled softly, returning his gaze to the ground.

Biting his bottom lip slightly, Axel went toward Larxene, whose eyes were also trained on the floor. Very lightly, Axel tapped her arm; when her blue orbs looked to him, he motioned with his head behind him, at Roxas. Calmly, Larxene mouthed the words 'Take him to his room for sleep.'

Nodding, the Flurry Of Dancing Flames slipped a supportive arm around the boy's shoulder. "Come on, kiddo," he soothed quietly, "let's get ya to bed."

When Roxas complied and rose, the two walked through a portal and reemerged into the boy's simple room. Axel guided the boy to the soft grey bed, helping the boy out of his Organization coat. The boy took off his boots and shirt on his own, and crawled under his sheets. However, the young boy continued looking at Axel with an expression of forlorn and anguish.

Again, Axel was startled at the boy's intensity. Before he knew it, the pyro was sitting on the edge of the bed, staring with a look of concern on his features. "What's up, little guy?" he asked quietly.

"Will I have to fight senselessly, too...?" the boy asked, bluntly but fearfully.

Axel looked just a tad startled, but nevertheless he regained his composure. "Well, kiddo...," he began uncertainly, "I don't wanna beat around the bush with you; you look like you're already starting to see things..."

"Larxene told me that I'll be expected to do anything...," Roxas murmured.

"Well...," he answered steadily. "When you're with us, you're expected to work for your heart, because you're devoid of true emotions. You're expected to keep that in mind, and therefore not care what you do in order to reach your goal..." Axel looked to the boy now, once again feeling that strange process of friendly, protective affection developing in his chest. The feeling was worming its way further in, and Axel was grateful that Larxene was firm in her decision to --although indeed include Roxas in their plan as a pawn-- never bring harm to this child.

Finally Roxas uttered the statement that began the workings of Axel and Larxene's plan... "It doesn't feel right here... I don't belong here..."

"I know...," was all Axel answered before rising to a portal. "Goodnight, kiddo."


"You two did quite a number on each other," she said darkly. "Does Xemnas know?"

Marluxia's blue eyes glittered with fading rage. "No," he answered lividly. "This was just awful. What is this Organization coming to? Taking on much younger members when they have no chance of surviving here? It's horrid, I tell you."

"Why don't you tell that to Xemnas himself?" Larxene challenged, a hiss to her tone as she began pulling the strings.

Marluxia stiffened, irritated. "Oh, I'll tell him alright," the Graceful Assassin growled. "But I'll need your help with it."

Raising a blond eyebrow, the woman replied, "Oh? How shall we do it?"

"First," Marluxia said quietly, as if sensing ears on the walls, "we shall meet the girl Xemnas has been holding in the castle."

"I'd heard of her," Larxene replied, feigning mystification. "Before Roxas was brought in, Xemnas brought her in slightly before; she's said to have some sort of connection with that Keyblade master..."

"Exactly," her pawn replied. "And we shall pay her a little visit. Objections?" he asked as he turned with a flourish toward a newly opened portal.

"None at all," Larxene said flippantly, mottled blue eyes shimmering with bursting triumph.