Not Quite Paradise
Written by xmystorytime.
Full Summary: 7 days. 7 themes. Written for Yullen week.
Warning: PG-13+ stuff.
Disclaimer: If I owned this animé/manga... I'd've had more funny scenes between Cross and Allen. Alas, I don't and therefore won't get my wish. Sadly.
[Seasonal] It's Allen's first Christmas at HQ, but someone's missing the party.
The music pounded so loud he could hardly hear himself think.
There was cheering as the radio belted out the well-known song 'Deck the Halls', adding to the euphoric atmosphere in the room. Smiling brightly, not sure when the last time he'd had so much fun on Christmas day was, he didn't need any encouragement to join in singing along to the music. It was an easy song to memorize, after all.
"Allen! Allen!" From his position in the centre of the room he turned, smile widening as he caught sight of the red-head making his way through the crowds to him. The smile slipped when he saw the mischievous look on his friend's face, but before he could prepare himself for what was about to come he had been assaulted and roughly pulled from his position and through the dense crowds.
"Lavi!" he protested, not really wanting to move from where he'd been standing. He might not have been dancing but he'd been enjoying it there. "What are you doing?!"
"I need someone to sing with me!" he said and Allen paled.
"What?!" he demanded, tugging on Lavi's grip. "No! Find someone else!"
"There isn't anyone else!" Lavi pouted, not letting go as he led them through the crowds to the small platform that had been made especially for the special occasion. Allen watched it grow nearer with dread, his heart sinking lower and lower the closer he got. "Besides, it's Christmas! The time to have fun!"
"This isn't my idea of fun," Allen hissed, trying to break free. They stumbled through a group of people and were nearly at the stage when Allen spotted his only way out of the event. "Lenalee!" he yelled to the head bouncing up and down through the dancing scientists. Lenalee turned to them with a wide smile and for the first time Allen saw what she was wearing. He couldn't help but stare. The green elf costume hugged the girl in all the right places, however...
"Allen-kun! Lavi!" she greeted, wrapping her arms first around Lavi (he was closer, after all), and then around Allen. Around her left wrist was a piece of worn-down tinsel, which scratched Allen's neck, but he didn't really notice.
"Does Komui know what you're wearing?!" Lavi demanded, sufficiently distracted to forget he'd been about to sing. Lenalee cocked her head to the side, frowning slightly. She couldn't hear the words over the music and Allen watched the pair try and communicate. It eventually resorted to Lavi throwing his hands up in the hair and giving up, to the amusement of Lenalee.
The trio, now nearer to the side of the room than the centre, turned and looked around the room. The song finally came to an end, to the disappointment of some, but as a new song started up on the radio (Jingle Bells seemed to be another favourite) there was more cheer. Allen stared at the wide smiles, the slightly-red faces from too much wine, the twinkling costumes of people he knew and loved.
Just seeing the pure enjoyment on everyone's faces, after everything that had happened, was enough to put Allen in a good mood for a year.
A hand slipped into his and arms wrapped itself around his other arm, and he blinked, turning to see Lavi and Lenalee grinning at him. He was about to smile back when Lenalee said something and gestured to the doors. Gathering she wanted to leave, he nodded (who was he to protest about not being forced to sing up on stage?) and the friends made their way out of the canteen to the corridor outside. The hallway itself was populated by several people who weren't so fond of the loud music, but were instead talking to people.
Allen found himself being led down until they were in the neighbouring room, where the music could be heard but at a much more manageable level. Having been refused exit from the canteen until now, Allen's ears had grown used to the music and it all seemed to be much quieter than he remembered.
"Man, this has been some fun night huh?" Lavi exhaled, letting go of Allen and flopping over the side of a chair. Allen grinned, thinking over the various activities of the night. The feast had been enormous, the games had been hilarious, the music had been a constant and the companionship of everyone...
"I don't ever want it to end," Lenalee sighed happily. "This is your first Christmas at the Order, right Allen-kun?"
"Ah, yeah. Yeah," Allen said, a little startled to realize it was true. He'd grown used to being so close to his friends that it hadn't really registered.
"Are you enjoying it?" she asked again and this time Allen smiled sincerely.
"Yes," he said, turning to her. "It's been one of the best days of my life." He hadn't received any presents but he hadn't expected any either. The best present he could've got this year he'd already received, and that was the memories of his time with the Order. Christmas Day had always been special to him, had always held a little space in his heart - ever since Mana had rescued him - and now it held even more special memories.
Some fond, some not so fond.
He thought sheepishly of when Reever had tried to strip earlier, inhibitions lost to drunkenness, and had had to be escorted from the room before he got further than his top.
"Oh!" he said suddenly, surprising his two friends. "There's only one person I haven't seen." he couldn't believe he hadn't realized it before. He must have been so focused on everyone else that it just slipped his mind...
"Hm?" Lenalee prompted when he didn't continue. Allen rest a hand behind his head, laughing softly.
"I'm not surprised, thinking about it. Does Kanda usually participate in Christmas Day?" he asked, turning to Lenalee. Lenalee blinked and turned to Lavi.
"No one's got him yet?" she asked, puzzled. Lavi blinked back.
"Reever was supposed to." he said with a frown, and then it hit everyone that Reever had probably got too drunk too quickly to remember he had a job to do. Lavi sighed, dropping his head into his hands. "Damn it." he sighed. Allen was only a tad lost. Lenalee, seeing Allen's bemused look, explained for the white-haired boy.
"Kanda never comes down until someone goes up to fetch him. We all know he wants to, at least we think he does, but his pride won't let him come down on his own. We have to all act like he was forced." Lenalee nodded, like she was a sage, and Allen blinked before scowling at nothing in particular.
"That... is one of the stupidest things I've heard," he said darkly, once more surprising his friends. "On Christmas day, things like pride and embarrassment go out the window... not that I'd expect him to understand anything like that. Stupid Kanda."
"A-Allen-kun..." Lenalee said warily, inching away from him. "Aren't you over-reacting a little?" But Allen had always had strong views, and his views of Christmas day were some of his strongest ones of all.
"It's not Christmas without all of the family." he murmured, missing Lavi and Lenalee's shared glance. "Don't worry, I'll go get him." As quickly as it had come his dark mood vanished and he was smiling again. With a look at his wary friends he turned and left the room, dodging around the various people and making his way up to the significantly darker floors.
They were only darker due to the fact that no one had turned on the lights, but Allen's imagination had him thinking the sour puss Kanda was the reason for such dimness and deliberately turned on each of the lights as he made his way through. The tinsel sparkled when he did so and he gazed at the painted drawings on the wall.
Some of them were so bad it was impossible to tell what they were, and some were actually very good. Each drawing gave Allen a different feeling of pleasure and cheerfully he made his way to where he knew Kanda's room was. His good mood would no doubt fade when he got into an argument with the other, like usual, so he made sure to make it last.
Eventually, however, he reached Kanda's room. He didn't hesitate as he pushed open the door, making a squeaking noise as he narrowly managed to avoid his head being cut off. From his knelt position he tilted his head back, seeing the emotionless face of Kanda sheathe the sword, and he scowled at him.
"You'd try and attack someone on Christmas day?!" he said, pushing himself to his feet.
"I have good reflexes," Kanda replied, seemingly not caring he'd nearly killed Allen. Allen supposed he shouldn't be surprised; Kanda hated him. He probably wouldn't care if Allen kicked the bucket (hell, he probably wanted to be the one to do it). Grimacing and remembering he was here on a mission, he reached out and grabbed Kanda's arm.
"Come on, it's time to come downstairs," he said, tugging. Kanda refused to move.
"I'm not going," he said, pulling out of Allen's grip. Allen rolled his eyes.
"Of course not. Now come on!" he snapped, glaring at the other. "Everyone's having fun downstairs, you should too."
"I said I'm not going, beansprout," he grinned maliciously and Allen twitched.
"My name's Allen, pretty boy," he retorted, making Kanda twitch.
"I'm not a pretty boy," Kanda scowled and Allen scowled back.
"You could've fooled me," he said, glancing back out of the door. He had a sudden longing to be back in the party, laughing with everyone, as he heard the faint music and Kanda must've seen his look.
"Che. Go back and leave me here," he said, turning away and settling back down on the bed. Allen blinked and then pulled a face to the male's back.
"Yeah, right. I said I'd bring you down didn't I? So I'm going to do that." he said, a little defiantly. "So come on Kanda, be nice in the spirit of Christmas and all that." he paused and then grinned wickedly. "Or do I have to call on the three ghosts, Mr. Scrooge?"
"... I'm not going." Kanda said, after a pause. "Especially not with the likes of you." Frustrated, Allen threw his hands up in the air.
"Fine! Right! Whatever! You can just stay up here and mope miserably while we're all having fun." he said, storming out the room. He was half way down the corridor before he remembered what it was Lenalee had told him. What a pain, he's probably just doing what he usually does, like a test... damn him, he scowled darkly at the floor.
Turning on his heel, he stalked back up the way he'd just stormed down and re-entered Kanda's room, slamming the door behind him. The light in the room shone and showed all but the barest corners of the room and for an instance, Allen was surprised there was nothing in the room.
His room was the same, however, so he didn't think any more and instead crossed his arms over his chest. His left hand tapped his arm impatiently.
"Why don't you want to come down?" he demanded. "Is it because of pride? Stupidity? Are you some sort of masochist?" he threw out more suggestions, watching Kanda get increasingly annoyed the more he continued.
"Why do you want me to come down?" Kanda replied, scowling from his sitting position on the bed. "Why is it so important to you that I'm there or not?" Allen had the horrible urge to stomp his foot at Kanda's stubbornness, like a child would when he didn't get his own way. He'd never done it himself, however...
"It's my first Christmas here. I don't want to spend it without everyone, even our own pet Scrooge, there." he said, but it was only partially the truth. Kanda seemed to sense that too because he raised an eyebrow.
"You're lying." he said. "Why did you come and get me?" Allen, not liking the way this was going, took a step back.
"I offered." he said, which was also partially true. "Reever was too drunk to remember to get you." Kanda snorted, slowly standing and taking a step closer to Allen.
"That's still not the reason, is it?" he asked, making Allen blanch. "The entire weeks leading up to Christmas you've been like a kid in a sweet shop." he took another step closer. "Nothing's been able to get you down. You've been working almost non-stop to help out with Christmas, to make sure that everyone enjoyed it." Another step. Allen kept backing up and when he hit the door he wished he hadn't shut it.
"Why is Christmas so important to you?" Kanda demanded, pausing in the middle of the room. Allen scowled.
"Is it so wrong to want everyone to have a happy Christmas?" he demanded, annoyed. "Is it so wrong to want everyone to feel the way I did on my first Christmas?" he took a step forwards, memories of Mana running through his mind. "It was on Christmas day that I finally became a person, the day that I had an identity, and it was the happiest day of my life," he stared at Kanda's widened eyes.
"If there was a way I can make anybody feel the same way I did that day, I'd do it in a heartbeat!" he paused, shouting the last part, and then realized what he'd just said. He fought back the embarrassment at it being Kanda he'd said it to, instead keeping his head high to show he wasn't ashamed. "That's why I want you down – because I don't want you to be miserable. I don't want anyone to be miserable but -" especially not you.
This time he bit back on his words, eyes wide and wondering where that had come from. His words echoed around the room, sinking into silence, and Allen was surprised when Kanda tilted his head to the side and gave a slight grin. It was a wicked grin, a small evil grin, and somehow it was creepier than his smirks.
"You think I'm miserable up here?" Kanda said, suddenly creeping forwards. "That's what I hate about you, bean sprout – you're always sprouting things that are based off of assumptions." he got closer to Allen, getting into his personal space, and before Allen knew what had happened his arms were being pinned up above his head by Kanda's hands.
"My name's Allen." he protested, body tingling from the close combat. Kanda seemed to ignore him.
"You see things from your way of the world, but you never view it from anyone else's. Ever wondered why one man's saviour is another man's villain?" Kanda leaned in close, never breaking eye contact. "I'm not miserable... bean sprout." Allen could almost taste Kanda's breath and as he opened his mouth to protest to the name, Kanda swooped down and gave him an open-mouthed kiss.
Allen's eyes widened when he felt Kanda close the distance between their bodies, bringing them closer than ever before. As first kisses went it wasn't something to talk about; Kanda pressing too hard and Allen too shocked to do much more than stand and look pretty. When Kanda pulled back, letting go of Allen's arms with a hint of doubt in his eyes, instead of pushing him away Allen wrapped said arms around his neck and stopped the other from going any further.
He tried to think of something to say, something that would accurately describe what he wanted to say, but he couldn't made sense of any of the emotions running through him. He just gazed into Kanda's eyes and, hesitantly, for he hadn't had much practice, he brought his lips back to Kanda's, shutting his eyes as he did so. He felt Kanda give another wicked grin against his mouth.
"Took you long enough." the male breathed, and then Allen lost track of everything save for the hard and heavy body pressed tightly against him, the hands that roamed and the lips locked tightly on his.
"Lavi..." she began doubtfully and Lavi held up a hand, stopping her from going any further. He had a feeling he knew what she was going to say.
"They haven't killed each other." he reassured her, but he wasn't sure if it was the truth or not. Allen had been gone for an awfully long time and despite looking everywhere, no one had seen them at the party yet. It meant they were still up in Kanda's room.
"They've been gone too long." Lenalee bit her lip. "Maybe it was a mistake letting Allen go."
"We couldn't have stopped him even if we wanted to." Lavi patted her hand gently. "You know how Allen is." Lenalee's back was to the hallway so she didn't see, but Lavi did and he grinned as he recognized the white-haired male walking down the hall. "Ah! There they are now!"
"What?" Lenalee spun around and it was amazing how much her mood lifted when she realized they hadn't killed each other. They watched as Kanda broke off from Allen, scowling darkly as he went on his way, and Allen pulled a face at his back, obviously irritated. Lavi snickered.
"Allen!" he called, waving. Allen made his way over to them and Lavi blinked. "Allen..." he trailed off when Allen approached, glancing the male up and down. "What happened?" Allen blinked back.
"What?" he said, naïve of his appearance. His clothes seemed a bit displaced, his hair was all over the place and his eyes had a slight unfocused look that was slowly fading. Lenalee broke out of Lavi's group and put her hands on her hips, frowning.
"You fought with Kanda again, didn't you?" she scolded and, to their surprise, a pink blush started to creep up on Allen's face.
"Ah, yes, fought, that's it," he said, nodding frantically and then glanced around. "Uh, I think I see Miranda, excuse me." Like a rabbit running from a fox he was off and Lavi watched him go, thinking deeply.
"You don't think...?" Lenalee started, eyes wide.
"No, no, it's not possible. They hate each other!" Lavi firmly denied once he realized what she meant. Then he paused. "They were gone for awhile..."
"They wouldn't." Lenalee was the one denying it now. "You said it yourself, they hate each other. We just saw them bickering!"
Neither of them mentioned the swollen lips Allen now sported.
A/N: I'm joining in on this because I'm testing myself. I'm not a fan of Yullen therefore if I can write it without letting my feelings get in the way of the writing, I'll be pleased. :P There isn't a lot of focus on action between Kanda/Allen. There's not much fluff either because I don't see their relationship fluffy. Enjoy!