Title: Simon Says

Summary: Seven-Shot. College welcome week was never this much fun. AkuRoku

Rating: T+ for offensive language and adult situations

Disclaimer: Not my sandbox. I just play in it.


Friday: Park Bench

Today is slightly dreary. I take some sort of sick satisfaction in this. The weather matches my mood. I want everyone else to be as miserable as I am.

Axel had a point.

I sit cross-legged on my bed, glaring dolefully out the window. Hayner had abandoned me before lunch, hanging out with his non-angsting friends for the afternoon. I don't really blame him. I'm not a very good person to be around when I'm … moody.

Axel hasn't come looking for me yet today. It's starting to really worry me.

It shouldn't worry me. I should be relieved that the overgrown, red-haired… annoyance doesn't seem to have any interest in me any more. But I do worry, and that worries me even more.

I hear a knock on the door, soft. Not like Axel's knocks. I sigh after that momentary sliver of hope and call out morosely,

"Come in. It's open." The door cracks open, and Namine peeks around it.

"Roxas? Are you all right?" Namine's a real sweetheart, in spite of what I said about her on Tuesday. "Hayner said you weren't feeling too good." I smile wanly at her.

"I'm okay."

"Liar," she accuses with a small smile, dancing in and sitting on the edge of my bed. "It's not good for you to be alone when you're sad," she continues. "Do you want to come and hang out with the girls and me? The next season of Top Model is playing another marathon." I roll my eyes, and she notices the expression, giggling. "I don't get why you dislike it so much!"

"Just because I'm gay doesn't mean I like watching all of your girly shows," I say, sticking my tongue out at her. She laughs, swatting at me.

"You didn't seem to mind it when Axel came around looking for volunteers for Sardines!"

"That's different, I was trying to get out of it!"

"Why were you trying to get out of it, anyway?" Namine asks, giving me a disapproving glance. "Axel's not bad looking, and he's totally into you."

"Try 'totally into my pants,' Namine," I say, flinching undetectably to anyone not myself as I realize that this isn't entirely true.

"Who wouldn't be?" Namine replies with a devious smirk. "But I have a feeling about him, Roxas. I think he actually cares about you." I shrug one shoulder, looking at my hands, limp in my lap.

"Probably not any more, after the way I treated him yesterday," I say, a hint of gloom in my voice. "I basically called him a sex-obsessed pervert to his face. True or not, who wants to be around someone with that opinion of you?" Namine clicks her tongue, rolling her eyes.

"It can't be that bad."

"Even if by some miracle it isn't 'that bad,' I'm not looking for a casual relationship right now. I'm just the latest in a string of – of – conquests to him, Nam," I say with a note of finality, looking away from Namine and out the window again.

"That's not what Demyx says." Namine's voice is sing-song, and I turn to her, confused.

"What do you mean?" Namine is wearing a cat-that-ate-the-canary grin. This means trouble.

"We-ell, I happened to overhear – "

"You were eavesdropping – "

"I. Happened. To. Overhear. Demyx telling Marluxia – the Neverland Hall RA, you know? – that he's never seen Axel get so worked up over a fling before. And Demyx and Axel have known each other for years, so you know that's reliable reconaissance, right there."

"Don't be ridiculous," I scoff, turning away again. "There's no reason he should act differently because of me."

"Except that he liiiiiikes yoooou," Namine chants. "Face it Roxy, you're special." She gives me a cheesy grin, patting me on the shoulder and leaving my room before I can protest to her conclusion or the nickname.

Demyx has had today's event planned for a while, now, so there's not much to do. This does means nothing to Demyx, who is bouncing around the dorm common room, looking for something more to set up.

"Demyx," I say, lowering my head to my hand and massaging my temples in an attempt to alleviate my up-and-coming headache. "There's nothing more to do. Sit down before you hurt yourself." He gives me a pout and plops down on the couch next to me.

"I just want it to be perfect… At least I got good prizes!" Demyx is beaming suddenly, bouncing in his seat. If he were a dog, his tail would be wagging. I raise an eyebrow, throwing my hands behind my head and leaning back into my seat to examine my friend.

"What is the prize, anyway?" He blew most of our budget on it, it has to be good. The innocently happy look is gone, replaced by a sly grin.

"You know how SeeD is playing at the amphitheatre next month…?" At the leading question, I freeze. Demyx knows damn well that SeeD is my favorite band, and he knows damn well that I have been trying to get tickets to that concert for ages.

"You didn't…"

"I did," he replies smugly. "Two front-row tickets to SeeD's Balamb Garden tour at Traverse Town Amphitheatre, for one of our lucky little residents. If you're extra nice to the winner, they might bring you with them." My jaw drops. Be nice to one of the Freshmeat? … They are SeeD tickets, though…

"Aw, Demy, can't I play in the game?" Demyx frowns at me.

"The game is for the residents, Axel." I consider this trying to find a way around this horrible, horrible truth.

"Well, technically, I'm a resident, aren't I? I do reside here, after all." I give him my most winning grin. Demyx opens his mouth, as if to object, but doesn't have anything to say. He closes his mouth, repeats the action, and then looks stumped.

"I… I guess that's true…"

"And it's not like I don't pay my student activity fees, just like everyone else." More hopeful grins, combined with puppy dog eyes. Demyx looks even more lost.

"Uh… ummm… I suppose it would be okay…" Yes! Now I just have to make sure I win.

The game we're going to play is called Park Bench. The first player sits on a "bench" – or a chair, or a sofa, or a coffee table… – and the other players take turns trying to get the first player to get up from the bench, without physically pulling them off of it and within a minute. If someone gets the first player to leave, they take his spot. The person who toughs it out the longest wins.

Now, me, I can withstand anything. I'm not ticklish, nothing really grosses me out, and blackmail doesn't faze me. Getting into the seat is another matter, but I figure I have one surefire way of accomplishing this – if Roxy is on the bench, I can simply order him –

"Oh, but Axel," Demyx pipes up suddenly, interrupting my plotting. I look up, surprised to find his face stern. "No cheating! And that means the Simon Says game is suspended until the end of the game. We can't give you an unfair advantage!"

Well, shit.

I huddle in a corner, arms folded, as I watch the rest of Atlantica Hall milling about the common room, chattering excitedly at one another. Admittedly, they have good reason to be excited – the SeeD tickets are almost a better prize than the 500 munny from the Simon Says game. Almost. But I am still feeling crummy about the way I have treated Axel.

And would you look at him? Smiling and joking with the other residents like nothing is wrong. I guess for him, nothing is wrong. I guess I'm not even a blip on his radar. Nothing worth worrying about, me.

Yes, I am aware that I am self-centered and feeling sorry for myself. Why should I care what the redheaded pevert thinks of me? I should be thankful that he hasn't seen me yet and is out of my hair.

Is he ignoring me? He'd better not be ignoring me. If he's ignoring me, I gonna –

Demyx is standing on one of the couches calling for attention. As he explains the rules of this little ice-breaker game, my eyes stray once again to Axel, who is examining the competition with a predatory expression. I haven't played this game before, but the concept is pretty easy, I guess. Get the other player to move within the specified time limit, and you win.

Axel's eyes meet mine, and I freeze. Where a moment ago there had been that all-too-familiar mischievous gleam, now there is… nothing. It's like he's looking at some stranger, not someone he's been joking around wi – tormenting, these past few days.

My stomach drops, to my annoyance. I don't know when exactly I let Axel get under my skin, but I don't like it. The last person who could make me feel this way with a simple glance was… well. I'm sure you can guess, I've whined about him enough.

I avoid Axel's gaze as Demyx starts the game, but I can still feel his eyes on me. It's a creepy, cold feeling, like someone's dropped ice cubes down the back of my shirt. My stomach is in knots, and it's difficult to concentrate on the game. I'm dimly aware when Namine is chased from the bench by some lame freshman kid who found a dead spider in the corner and dangled it in front of her face.

Pouting, she walks over to me and drapes herself over my shoulder.

"Well, that was disappointing. I wonder how he knew I was afraid of spiders…" she mumbles into my shirt. I don't respond. If I say anything, Axel will notice. I'm sure of it. Namine looks up from my shoulder, scrutinizing. "You don't look so well, Roxas. And you're not paying attention to me." Her voice becomes slightly petulant in the second statement. "What's the matter?"

"Is he watching me still?" I ask, moving my mouth as little as possible. Namine looks confused.

"Who?" I give her a Look.

"Who do you think?" Who else? I can feel his eyes on me still. I know the answer to my own question already, but I want to be absolutely positive. I want Namine to see the look on his face and to tell me that I'm imagining the indifference.

"Oh," she says, cocking her head to the side and glancing over to where Axel is sitting. "No, he's not. He's just watching the game." I stare at her incredulously and follow her gaze. Axel is making some derisive remark about the current Park Bench champion to Demyx, who is trying to maintain his disapproving RA expression and failing as he muffled his laughter.

He's not looking at me. So why do I still feel so awful?

Hayner manages to budge the reigning champion (the boy who scared Namine off) by merely cracking his knuckles and giving him a menacing glare that promises retribution later if he doesn't immediately vacate the bench. Namine snickers, glad that her tormenter was so easily intimidated himself. Normally, I would find this funny. Namine notices my lack of enthusiasm.

"You knooow…" she begins, drawing out the syllables. "I heard that Axel really likes SeeD… They're his favorite band." I stiffen at the mention of his name.

"So?" I ask cageily, giving Namine a blank look as she starts drawing circles on the sleeve of my sweatshirt with her index finger.

"Sooo… I'm sure he'd be ecstatic to go with whoever wins the tickets." I say nothing. Namine's circles become hearts. She giggles as the silence between us grows. "You know, I've always thought that going to a concert is the best kind of date. You get to know a lot about a person by the kind of music they enjoy. Plus, you get to share your interests." My mouth suddenly becomes dry, and I swallow a few times to get rid of that cottony feeling.

"Oh well. Someone would have to figure out how to get Hayner off the bench, and everyone who's known him for more than two minutes knows he the most stubborn person in the world. By the way, Roxas… Isn't SeeD your favorite band, too? Maybe Hayner will give you his extra ticket." Namine's tone is casual and innocent, but her words are leading. She smiles at me and lifts her head off my shoulder. "Well, I'll talk to you later, Roxas. I'm going to go see what Kairi and Selphie are talking about."

She prances off and I stare after her, confounded. As I turn my attention back to the game, I catch Axel's eye once more. He smirks, as if he's suddenly figured something out. It makes me nervous.

"You're up Roxy!" Demyx suddenly pops into my line of sight. "You're one of the last few! Think you can make Hayner move?"

Hayner smirks at me from the sofa that is serving as our "bench", crossing his arms challengingly. I think for a moment, tilting my head to the side, before a plan forms in my mind. I return Hayner's smirk and nonchalantly stroll up to him, leaning down to whisper in his ear.

"You've got quite a reputation here, Hayner. I wonder what would happen to that reputation if they found out about Mr. Kupo…" Mr. Kupo, Hayner's stuffed moogle, sits proudly on top of Hayner's pillows, safe and out-of-sight in our room. Hayner can't sleep without him.

My roommate pales and stands up, abruptly stalking to the other side othe room and fixing me with a fearful glare as I cheerfully take his seat amongst the applause.

"Jeez, Roxy, what'd you say to him?" Demyx asks in awe. I just smile cheerfully at him. You never know when blackmail like that could come in handy. The game continues – there are still a dozen or so left of about fifty residents. I am immovable, and with each failure, I become more and more confident.

And then I realize that Axel, instead of fascilitating the game, is actually playing.

"All right, Axy!" Demyx cries as Axel moves to stand in front of the bench. "Let's see if you can make our undefeated champion budge!"

The split second before Axel acts seems to take forever. He's giving me a superior smirk, his eyes glinting. The distant, impassive glaze from earlier is gone. I grip the fabric of the sofa tightly, steeling myself.

He walks up to me. I wonder, as he gets close enough to whisper, if he is going to use the Simon Says game to make me move. I realize though, that Demyx – being as fair-minded as he is – would probably have forbidden this. So why is he getting so clo – too close!

I stop breathing for a moment as Axel's lips move to cover mine. They're soft, but demanding, challenging me to respond. Axel's hands touch my shoulders, pushing me back into the sofa. I gasp as he nips at my bottom lip, allowing him to press his tongue into my mouth. Some part of me, detached from everything else, notes that he has a barbell through his tongue, and that same detached train of thought tells me that I like this. The rest of me is chanting a mantra of ohmygodohmygodohmygod, as I allow my eyes to close and I begin to enjoy the feeling of Axel's mouth on mine.

And suddenly, I realize that we are in a room full of fifty people, all watching us and suddenly silent, and that this is Axel who's kissing me – Axel, who I've been trying to avoid like the plague all week, Axel who wants in my pants, Axel who's name I haven't even spoken out loud yet to his face even though he has been calling me by a pet name from day one, AxelAxel Axel –

I pull away, staring at him in shock. He draws back as well, his usual cat-that-ate-the-canary smirk growing as he stares back with half-lidded eyes. The silence is deafening. Distantly, I note that Hayner is slack-jawed, and Namine looks like Christmas has come early.

I have to get out of here. I push past Axel and run out of the common room, and don't stop until I somehow find myself on the rooftop where I hid playing Sardines.

If Demyx hadn't arrived, would he have kissed me then, too? But no – Axel doesn't mind an audience, as he just demonstrated.

I press my fingers to my mouth, recalling the feel of his lips. I should feel violated. Disgusted. Humiliated.

But all I can think is that I want him to kiss me again.

Axel won the SeeD tickets, as everyone else was in too much shock to imagine a way to get him to leave the bench. Roxas, on the other hand, fell asleep on the roof, woke from a nightmare around three in the morning, and dragged himself back to bed. Hayner didn't stir, his arms clamped tightly around Mr. Kupo.

Roxas found himself wishing he had someone to hug in his sleep too.


::hides:: Sorry I was away for so long. Life happened. Friend drama is over, we're buds again, back working at Borders because one of the other cashiers got fired, more essays, volunteered myself as a study-break commissioner for my college programming club (basically, I plan events like Demy and Ax and the other RAs do. D), F.I.N.A.L.S, Sims 3 came out, went to England and France with the family, and more work. It's almost Welcome Week again at my college, so it looks like I failed this time around to complete it before school starts.

Um, so that was the first kissing scene I have ever wrote in the history of ever. How'd I do? X|

See you next time in Saturday: Seven Minutes in Heaven.

(PS – Reviews make me uber happy. :D )