Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry that it's been so ridiculously long. And the problem is, I found this chapter randomly written out on some paper and I wrote it a long time, so I don't have anything else after this until I come up with something. This story is so dying...it's sad, and I'm mad that I can't keep it updated. Well, here's this chapter, anyway, and I think it's a bit longer than some of the other ones. I know it doesn't make up for my total lack of writing, but anyway. Here it is...
Holly woke the next morning to the smell of coffee. She sat up and glanced towards the kitchen to see Artemis pouring himself a mug of coffee. He looked into the living room, noticing Holly.
"Good morning," he said. "I hope you don't mind that I helped myself." He motioned towards the coffee.
Holly shook her head blankly. "Nope." She was held in place by his eyes, the pull she had felt years ago still as strong as ever.
Artemis nodded, seemingly unaffected by her. "Good. Do you want some?"
"Sure," Holly muttered, disappointed by his lack of interest in her.
Artemis poured her a mug and brought it over. He sidestepped Butler whow as still asleep on the floor and handed her the mug, sitting down on the end of the couch and taking a sip of his own.
Holly pulled her legs to herself and crossed them. "Thanks." She felt the heat from the mug warm her hands and she sighed. "Did you sleep alright? I know the bed was small."
Artemis shrugged. "It was fine." He was looking ahead, eyes unfocused. "What about you? The couch couldn't be that comfortable."
"It wasn't too bad." Holly could still feel the tension in the room, remaining from the previous day's fight about Minerva. She glanced at Artemis out of the corner of her eye. Even though he still looked sick, she was enthralled by him. His hair, his eyes, his voice, everything about him made her breath catch. But every breath she took hurt now because she knew he didn't feel the same way about her.
Artemis then took a deep breath and turned him whole body to face her. "Look, Holly, I should probably get this out now before it causes any more fights."
Holly turned to look at him warily.
"I don't feel the same way about you as you do about me." Artemis said the words in a somewhat rushed voice. "Holly, I loved you, I really did, but after you left...I was wondering last night if that love would ever come back, but it isn't."
Holly felt herself stop breathing, felt like the room was closing in on her. But she wouldn't cry in front of Artemis Fowl. She wouldn't.
She inhaled deeply, composing herself. "You know what, Artemis? That's okay. I mean, it's been years, right?"
Artemis nodded slowly. It was his turn to look wary. Out of all the responses from Holly that he had expected, this was not one of them.
Holly nodded resolutely. "Besides, I've been seeing someone else lately." So it was a lie, but if it helped her keep herself composed, it was good.
"Alright," was Artemis' response.
Holly finished off her coffee, which she had been drinking throughout their conversation, and sat it on the coffee table. "Now I'm going to go have a shower."
Artemis watched her go, then went back to the kitchen to attempt to prepare some breakfast with his still limited cooking knowledge.
Holly stood in the shower, letting the warm water wash over her and carry away the tears that streamed down her face. She hated to cry, but she couldn't help it. She'd known it was coming, but that didn't stop the pain that threatened to pull her under.
Artemis was attempting to fry an egg when the doorbell rang. Butler was immediately awake and on his feet, hand hovering over his gun.
Artemis left the kitchen, walking towards the door, motioning for Butler to relax. The manservant shook his head and stayed behind Artemis.
Artemis opened the door and blinked in surprise at who stood there.
The blonde stood in the doorway, a smile on her face. "Artemis! I haven't seen you for so long!" She stepped forward and embraced him.
Artemis returned the gesture and kissed her on the cheek. Then he paused, his mind providing him with a question. "How did you get down here?"
Minerva shrugged. "I've made some friends since you were gone."
Artemis nodded. "I didn't think I'd be seeing you so soon. Come in." He stepped back, holding the door for her. Minerva entered the apartment, wincing from a sudden scent of burnt food.
"Is something burning, Artemis?"
Artemis blinked, running over to the stove to turn it off. He examined the frying pan and sighed when he saw that it contained only a blackened lump.
Minerva came up behind him, took one look at the frying pan and laughed. "Can I help you?"
Artemis shrugged. "Well, it's apparent I didn't take any cooking lessons in that cursed hospital."
Minerva nodded. "I'll help you," she concluded.
Butler watched as Artemis and Minerva moved about the kitchen, putting breakfast together. He sincerely hoped that Holly wouldn't show up at that moment; it would break her heart to see the two together, the occasional glances and brushes. He was surprised, to say the least; they hadn't seen each other for a while. Minerva had visited Artemis in the hospital, but he had either been drugged or asleep.
However, much to Butler's chagrin, Holly chose that moment to enter the main room. When she saw Minerva, she stopped dead and watched as Artemis kissed her. Minerva wrapped her arms around his neck.
Boa constrictor, Holly thought, aside from her initial horror and hurt. She felt as if a knife had stabbed through her heart, causing her to double over in pain. What is she doing here? her mind screamed.
It was then that Butler cleared his throat. Artemis and Minerva broke apart, glancing at him curiously. Then Artemis noticed Holly. He immediately backed away from Minerva, struck by the depth of pain in Holly's eyes as the elf turned and stumbled back to her room.
Butler actually glared at his charge before motioning to Holly's room. Artemis winced and shook his head. Butler nodded and Artemis exhaled before walking up to the door of Holly's room and knocking twice. He received no answer, but entered regardless.
Holly sat on her bed, staring blankly at the wall before her. When Artemis closed the door, she got off the bed, walked over him and punched him as hard as she could in the arm. Artemis winced but didn't make a sound.
Holly walked back over to the bed and sat down. "If you weren't in mortal danger from Koboi, and if there wasn't a Mud Man Mountain out there," she motioned with her head to the main room, "I'd kick you out. This is my apartment."
Artemis shook his head. "Holly, I'm sorry, but we don't have time to do this. Trouble will be here soon and we'll have to go catch Koboi."
"Oh, so we have time for you to be making out in my apartment, but not enough time for me to yell at you for it?"
Artemis, amazingly, was at a loss for words.
"Just get out of here, Mud Man." She glanced at the clock. "We leave soon. Get ready."
Artemis just nodded, leaving the room. Butler and Minerva both glanced at him.
"Get ready, we're leaving soon," Artemis said, sitting in a chair and staring at the wall. Butler sighed and Minerva frowned in confusion.
"Where are we going?" she asked.
Butler shook his head. "You aren't going anywhere. I think it would be best if you left now."
Minerva shrugged. "Fine. I'll see you later, Artemis." She waved once, then left.
Butler sighed. "Well, we'd better get ready."
Sorry if you hate Minerva...I just wanted to do something different from my usually Artemis/Holly. Cause I'll admit, I totally ship them. Anyway, review please, but don't expect anything for a while. I hate saying that and I'm so sorry, but...you know. Writer's block. Hope you liked it, even if you hate Minerva.