Authors Note: Thanks for the reviews everyone! :D
"Tyki dear, would you pass the mashed potatoes?"
"Yes, Uncle," Tyki placed the requested dish in his Uncle's pudgy hands.
"It's so nice," Uncle Earl began happily, ladling the mushy goodness onto his plate, "that we can have such a lovely family dinner together. It's so nice, when families can do that. Don't you think?"
Tyki raised an eyebrow. He knew his Uncle was a little nearsighted, but was he seriously going blind? And legally deaf, too, because if Rhode's cheering got any louder—
– a utensil (Tyki couldn't tell what it was exactly, it flew by too fast) clanged into the back wall, and Tyki sighed.
"Lovely family dinner, sure," he grumbled as Jazz fell into his lap, brandishing a spoon.
"Oi, Tyki," Jazz screeched, "don't interfere if you don't wanna die, yeah?"
"You idiot, I didn't even touch you," Tyki growled, pinching the bridge of his nose with one hand as he shoved Jazz out of his personal bubble with the other.
"Jazz, duck!" David screamed from the other side of the table, and Tyki (having good sense) ducked as well, just as another projectile- this one something squishy sounding, whizzed past them to splatter against the wall.
"Oh it's no fun if you duck, Tyki," Rhode whined. Her eyes brightened almost immediately afterwards with another thought: "…unless you're going to punch stupid David for flinging that baked apple at you?" she asked hopefully.
To his left, Uncle Earl was cooing something about the importance of family bonds (still piling on those potatoes, mind you). To his right, Jazz was ramming their chairs together, and from his peripheral vision he could see David trying to aim another apple. Rhode was now leaning over the table, reaching out to tug his sleeve with every chant of you gonna punch him, Tyki? Huh, Tyki?
Why was he here again?
"So he forgot."
Kanda grunted in the affirmative.
"…just like that."
A curt nod.
"Damn, Yuu," Lavi let out a low whistle, "that sucks some major ass. Who knew the kid had alcohol induced amnesia issues? And what a way to find out, huh…"
"Yeah, I got that much, now where's that amazing advice of yours, stupid rabbit?" Kanda snapped.
"Right, right! Gimme a minute to think, would ya?"
"…that is, if the bean has amnesia issues," Kanda muttered after a moment of silence.
Lavi blinked and turned fully in his seat to look at his friend. "Yuu, what do you mean?"
"I mean, what if he's just ignoring it because he doesn't really feel that way and just did that shit because he was drunk?" Kanda spat out, clenching the steering wheel.
"…Yuu…" Lavi sighed, "…so that's why you're so hurt about this." He made to touch Kanda's shoulder sympathetically but was roughly swatted away.
"I'm not hurt about this, freaking rabbit. Just pissed, you got that?"
Lavi waved him off. "But I don't think you need to worry," he smiled. "Allen really likes you, even if he doesn't remember confessing."
"Tch. So now what?"
"Well, I've told you what I know," Lavi said, putting his hands behind his head. "The rest is up to you."
"What the hell, that's your piece-of-shit advice?"
"Hey, it's not like I'm leaving you completely hanging, you know. I've got a plan, a fucking amazing one at that. Now are you gonna let me finish talking?"
"Tch! Just get on with it."
"So I'm thinking that we're suddenly short on funds," Lavi began eagerly, "and so you and Allen-chan are gonna have to share a room in the fancy ass hotel where the competition's taking place. Which means, ple-enty of alone time, yeah?" He grinned. "Now, you've got two options. You can either confront the kid verbally, you know, sit down all pillow-talk like or, my personal favorite, you just shove him up against a wall and kiss him like you did last time. Should work beautifully, I think."
"You're no help," he groaned, "you're fucking insane."
"It'll work, I swear!" Lavi insisted. "Oh, and make sure you take video, yeah? Ow! Ow, not my head! Hey-- Yuu, watch the road!"
Kanda's mood remained pissed upon reaching home- though scaring the pants off Lavi by swerving on the highway was damn good fun and did manage to bring a tiny smile to his face. Komui's heartbroken, enraged shriek of you left my sister WHERE nearly made his ears bleed, and only after squashing his older cousin's foot hard enough to shut him up could Kanda get a word in edgewise.
"Listen, you sister-complex," he growled, "Lenalee told us to leave, so we did. Or are you saying your perfect little sister can't handle something like a fucking mall?"
Komui sniffled, but sulked back to his office with a muttered, "How dare you! Stupid Kanda, stupid Lavi."
They found Fou in Lenalee's room playing some sort of violent game on her video game system.
"Yo!" she grinned, pausing the game. "How was the mall, girls?"
"Shut the fuck up."
"He means it was okay, thanks for asking. Hey, you totally missed out, Fou," Lavi said, pulling a beanbag over to sit next to her. "Lenalee got Allen in a dress."
"Woah, you freakin' serious? Damn!" Her eyes slid over to Kanda. "And what about this Asian beauty? Get him in a kimono or somethin'?"
"If you weren't a girl, I'd punch you. Oh, wait, you're not. Get up so I can kick your ass, fucker," Kanda hissed, leaning against the doorframe.
"Sorry, Yuu," Fou drawled sweetly, "but you know my morals. I don't fight kids or little girls."
"Enough with the gender cracks, people," Lavi sighed. "Seriously Fou, we've all had our masculinity questioned with this mall venture, ya know. 'Cept maybe me, but you know it's impossible to question this," he motioned to himself smugly.
"That's right, can't question what you'll never know," Kanda agreed with a smirk. "No point in something like that, huh, stupid rabbit?"
Fou laughed heartily. "I knew there was a reason we kept you around, girly man!" At Kanda's growl she coughed and waved a hand. "Alright, alright. So, where are Lee and the little cross-dresser anyway?"
Fou winced. "Ouch." She made the symbol of the cross. "And may his soul rest in peace."
Lavi and Kanda looked solemnly at the floor.
Just as Tyki was actually going to listen to Road and sucker punch the twins while they argued noisily, the room fell silent. A slim, shadowy figure stood in the doorway.
"Oh, Lulubell dear," Uncle Earl clapped his hands joyfully. "And you're just in time for desert!"
Lulubell pocketed her glasses and bowed at the waist. Tyki rolled his eyes. Always so formal, their oldest cousin was.
"It is good to be home, honored Uncle." When she straightened she reached behind her, back through the door, and tugged something forward. The 'something' turned out to be a hefty, dark-skinned man with dark brown hair gelled up into spikes. "I located Skinn, as you asked."
Skinn waved half-heartedly.
"Skinn, you fat ass, no wonder Lulu was late," David said, grinning, "what, were you pigging out in the school cafeteria again, Mr. Boric?"
"Please refrain from addressing me thusly," Lulubell said through pursed lips, narrowing her eyes at David.
"Ha-ha, Mr. Boric! You sound so important, Skinn," Jazz trilled.
"Now, now, Jasdevi," Uncle Earl said in his 'chastising voice', "you two scoot down so Lulubell and Skinn can sit near me."
"Ehh? But then we can't talk to Tyki!" David complained.
"Yeah, yeah!" Jazz agreed, nodding energetically.
"Because we were having such the intelligent conversation," Tyki said sarcastically.
Uncle Earl fixed the twins with a steely smile and they squeaked, shuffling down two seats. Lulubell sat beside Tyki and Skinn took David's seat.
The butler (probably a distant relative twice removed, judging by the resemblance he bore to Jazz and David- something that greatly amused Tyki) placed porcelain bowls of sorbet on the table. Skinn dug into his immediately, slurping down the icy desert with apparently no symptom of brain freeze. Lulubell took a dignified spoonful before folding her napkin and declaring herself full. Rhode finished hers neatly but speedily, and when she began eyeing Tyki's untouched bowl, he slid the desert to her and won a brilliant smile.
"Not in the mood for desert, Tyki dear?" Uncle Earl asked, tilting his head.
"No, I'm too excited to eat," Tyki replied, smiling, "you know, about the cake competition."
"Oh-ho-ho, yes, I almost forgot!" Earl chortled. Tyki laughed uneasily with him. "Everyone, I want to announce something."
Jazz and David stopped stealing sorbet from each other's bowls, Skinn stopped licking his clean, and Rhode and Lulubell sat up straighter in their seats.
"Now, you should know that Tyki," he reached over to pinch Tyki's cheek, "is competing in the National Cake Competition. And naturally since we want our dear Tyki to have the edge, I made sure to get the inside information, such a kind and loving uncle am I! And I also got everyone here front row tickets!"
Tyki almost did a head-desk. His entire family showing up for the competition? Well, the deadline to pull out is next week…
"And I think all of you will enjoy hearing the theme as well. The theme is…"
Tyki leaned forward in his seat, all thoughts of resignation gone. Hell, for ten thousand dollars he'd even babysit Jazz and David. Handling his family in a crowded public place would be easy in comparison.
Three weeks since receiving the news of the National Cake Competition, the day for Kanda and Allen to leave for California arrived.
It was a Monday morning, at a chilly 5 o'clock. The entire cake gang gathered at the shop for a final drink and bon voyage party for the two participants.
"Fou, you are the only person I know who could drink so much so early in the morning," Allen said, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. Fou finished off her third bottle of beer and grinned.
"Well, I've gotta drink your share too, right? Don't want this stuff to go to waste and what not."
"Okay, everyone," Lavi called, bringing the group together in a circle. "Now, it's about time for Yuu and Allen to set off on their big journey," he said with the air of a commander sending his troops off to battle. "And we want you two to know that we're all with you, all the way. Win or lose, but you'll definitely win, we're with you. Now, go forth and kick some ass!" He raised his bottle up and everyone clanged theirs with his in a loud cheer.
"Tch, it's just a stupid competition," Kanda grumbled, but it was obvious he had to force it.
"I think it'll be fun," Allen said brightly. "I look forward to working with you, jerk," he added teasingly.
"Just don't mess it up, bean," Kanda replied with a tiny smirk.
Lavi, Lenalee and Fou, who were watching the scene with a certain fondness shook their heads. Silly boys, this trip would do them more good than they could imagine.
"Right, Kanda, Allen, we should get going," Lenalee said, leading the two to the door with a hand on their shoulders. "See you later, Lavi, Fou."
"Bye guys! Tell Miranda, too, when she comes." Allen said happily, waving as he left.
"Bye Allen! Yuu! Aren't you going to say goodbye? Won't you miss me?" Lavi called.
"Tch, like hell I'd miss your annoying voice, stupid rabbit!"
"Ciao, femme face!" Fou sang. "Maybe if you come back after kicking some ass I'll acknowledge that you're a real boy!"
"Get ready to eat every fucking girl comment you ever made, bitch," Kanda replied, but when he followed Allen and Lenalee out the door, he raised his hand in something of a wave.
- - -
The drive to the airport was uneventful (except for Allen falling asleep on Kanda's shoulder, and, Lenalee noticed with glee, Kanda declining to shove the other boy off, opting instead to pointedly look out the window with softer eyes than usual. But Lenalee pretended she didn't see anything when Kanda's eyes snapped back to the rearview mirror to check). Lenalee offered to stay until they checked in, but there was quite a bit of traffic at JFK, and Kanda's gruff 'leave, it's not like you could help' was actually good advice.
"Alright, have fun!" she gave each of them a hug. "Be safe, don't hurt each other and be sure to teach the other guys a lesson on how to bake, okay?"
"Naturally," Allen replied, grinning. "Bye, Lenalee. Thanks for driving us!"
"Not at all. Bye!"
They watched and waved (well, Allen did) until she drove off into the mass of cars.
"Let's go, beansprout."
A/N: Yay, a last update before school! :D
This one was fun to write, and yay, actually has PLOT! I think the Noah family dinner is the best part, if you ask me.
Oh, for those who care: in a very much belated attempt at posting something for Yullen week, I've written a drabble on the theme comfort that's up. :3
Review if you laughed or smiled or cried (lol wut?).