Rubbing salt in open wounds

Ice-Puppet

Authors note: This came to me while listening to Darren Hayes. Gasp! It's not a Matt x Demyx! Rejoice. AkuDemy is my KH OTP, I love it so. Of course, I can pair Dem Dem with just about anyone and be happy- but I doubt you want to hear all that. On with the fic! This is a one-shot.

Disclaimer: Kingdom Hearts and all its characters belong to Squeenix and Disney.

The drummer was a scary looking girl with short blonde hair and these crazy eyes. She twitched during the slow songs, obviously preferring the faster-based tempos. She wore a cat-like grin on her face and paid little attention to what the rest of the band or the crowd was doing, basking in the spot light very little. As far as he could remember, her name was Larxene. Probably a stage name.

The base guitarist had silver hair and aquamarine eyes. He liked to throw his head around in time to the music, wearing a huge, carefree grin and sending winks to the closest girls (and boys), as well as the lead singer. He had a pretty face, just like the rest of his band mates. His name was Riku and he wasn't as nice as he looked.

The lead guitarist stood as far away from the spot like as possible while still being on the stage. He was a short little thing, with this sort of silver-blue hair and blue eyes. He was the youngest in the group and probably the shyest, if the fact that he kept his face turned away from the crowd, his hair covering most of it, had anything to show. He couldn't really remember the kid's name, but knew it started with a Z. Someone in the crowd nearby shouted out, "Zexion!" Oh, so that was it.

The last of the group was soaking in the spot light and the energy from the insane large crowd. He had a voice like an angel and a body like a male Aphrodite, which he knew how to use. His girlish hips swayed in time to his own band as he sang into the mic, twisting every part of himself around angelically. Every so often he would lean over the edge of the stage and run his fingers across the face of a lucky audience member with a teasing smile- one that he knew oh too well. This boy belonged in the spot light, belonged to the music.

This boy was also his, Axel's, ex boyfriend.

It hadn't been his choice to come to The Nobody's concert. He blamed his best friend, Roxas. The younger boy had called in to a local radio station at least twelve times in order to be the 100th caller and, apparently, his luck was astounding. The prize was four front row tickets, back stage passes, and the ability to spend the rest of the night with the band.

Joyous, win of all wins, he had invited Axel to come along.

Because apparently Roxas only had three friends.

The other two along for this night of insanity were Roxas' other two companions. Sora, his bubbly brunette twin brother, who fangirl-ed over Riku like no one else, and Sora's best friend and co-fangirl, Kairi, a redhead who jumped around to the music happily, something Axel had never expected to see. She was usually the sensible one.

None of them knew of his past with the singer, which was perfectly acceptable to him. However it was bound to come up now that the show was over and Roxas was cheerfully leading him out the doors and around to the back. They flashed their blue back stage passes toward the man standing there, who snorted in distain and motioned for them to follow him. He was a tall man with blue hair and a rather frightening scar across the front of his face.

"Wait here," the scary blue haired man told them as he disappeared down a hallway. A few moments later he returned with the laughing members of the band, who had their arms thrown around each other as they walked along, chatting amongst themselves. "The winners of the local contest," the security guard informed, motioning to Axel and his group.

"Ah, so you're the ones we're going to hang with," the singer greeted, before his eyes fell on Axel and the smile that was etched across his face grew, if possible, bigger. Axel felt himself grow stiff and he forced himself to smile in return, though he was pretty sure the singer could tell it was fake. He always could. "Oh. Axel. Fancy seeing you here."

"Demyx," was all he could force himself to say. His mind wanted to snap something along the lines of, 'I was forced to come' or 'Yeah, fancy that, seeing as I'd rather be anywhere else', but the words wouldn't fall from his lips. Tongue tied, the way the singer had always left him. The bastard.

"You two know each other?" Roxas asked in a voice that told Axel he was really going to get it later for not mentioning this before.

"It's a funny story," Riku informed, laughter in his voice. Axel still hated him, even after all these years. The bastard. Sora and Kairi both swooned as he spoke. "You know our song, 'Heart Attack'?" Roxas nodded and Axel felt the urge to roll his eyes. His blonde haired friend was constantly playing that song. "Well, that's written about Axel."

Looking at the redhead with disbelieving eyes, Roxas, Kairi, and Sora all had looks on their faces like they expected him to say something. Thankfully, he was saved when a blonde haired man with a goatee approached, ending a conversation he was having on a cell phone as he walked up to Demyx.

"So, where would you guys like to take us on our hang-out?" Demyx asked, still all smiles. It pissed Axel off, a bit, that seeing his ex-boyfriend had done nothing to miff the cheerful blonde.

Sora and Roxas shared what Axel liked to call one of their 'twin' looks. It was a look that was unreadable to the naked eye, meaning that they were in each other's minds. Then they turned back to Demyx and Sora spoke, "We were thinking the local arcade."

Demyx's eyes lit up and Axel remembered that the boy loved video games, especially the kind that you could only get in arcades. He turned toward the blonde haired man, eyes rounding and his bottom lip sticking out in his 'Dem-Dem pout'. Riku had named it. "Please, Luxord?" He asked as he saw the man sigh and put a hand against his forehead. "Please~?"

"If you take Saix and Lexaeus," the blonde haired man informed.

While the other members of the band grinned at the fact that they had won over this man, Demyx's shoulders slouched. "Way to kill the fun, Luxy!" He pouted, crossing his arms over his chest.

"Oh get over it, Dem," Larxene addressed, smacking him on the back as she approached the group of prizewinners. "At least he's letting us go."

Saix was apparently the scary blue-haired man from before, who sat beside Demyx in the limo as they piled in, keeping him away from the rest of the group. Lexaeus was a tall man with carrot top hair who was friendly enough, although he didn't say much.

Axel felt extremely left out, but he hadn't expected to feel any less. Sora chatted wildly to Riku, who listened patiently, while Kairi sat to the side and blushed every time the silver haired guitarist glanced her way. Larxene was admiring the fancy nail work that Roxas had painted on as he told her about the girl who had done it- Namine, Kairi's sister, who was out of town and not all that interested in the band's music, anyway. Zexion was reading what looked like a mystery novel and paying little attention to the rest of the group. Demyx was surprisingly quiet, head leaning against the window as he smiled to himself. Every so often he would glance at Axel when he thought the redhead wasn't looking.

They arrived at the large arcade which doubled as a pizza parlor and parked around back to avoid more fans then necessary. Lexaeus cleared his throat but otherwise made no other comments as Riku held out his hand for Sora, helping the cheerful brunette from the car, Kairi following. Roxas piled out with Larxene, Zexion in tow. Axel felt for a moment like staying in the limo, but one glare from Saix told him that if he didn't pile out now he would suffer horrible pain. Demyx was the last to come out, bouncing around excitedly as if he were entering a candy store.

"Dibs on DDR!" The singer chirped, rushing around to the front of the building, out of sight. Saix huffed and calmly followed, the group trailing after the two of them, Axel dragging his feet in the back.

"So Axel," Roxas addressed him, making the redhead cringe. He had hoped Roxas was going to wait until at least they got home before he asked. "An Ex-boyfriend, huh?"

"At least you see what I saw in him," Axel huffed, knowing the blonde was practically in love with the singer.

He expected some sort of snide remark, but instead he got a calming, "If you had told me I wouldn't have forced you to listen to their songs, you know."

Sending him a half-glare, not really in the mood to put up with a guilt trip sugar coded with friendly words (because he knew Roxas well enough to know exactly when his friend was guilt tripping him), Axel then rolled his apple green eyes. "Yeah. And if I had told you I would have been plagued with, 'What's his favorite color? What's his favorite food? Is he good in bed?' Because that's so much better."

"Is he?" Roxas inquired.

"Shut up, Roxas," was the response.

The group entered the arcade and spotted Demyx bouncing at the counter, impatiently tapping his fingers around. The girl behind the counter was staring at him, wide-eyed, and only gave a quick nod as Lexaeus paid for them to get in and for a good amount of tokens. As expected, Demyx immediately rushed over to the DDR station.

"You should go up against him, Axel!" Sora suggested and Axel wanted nothing more then to take one of those zombie hunter game's plastic guns and shove it down Sora's throat. "You're the best DDR master that I know!"

"I bet you can take on Demyx," Kairi encouraged.

"Unlikely," Zexion commented, the first word Axel could remember him speaking since he had met the shrimp.

"I'll be over here," Axel informed, shoving the bag of tokens he had been given into Roxas' hands and stalking over to an emptier part of the arcade.

He could still hear the group, however, considering the place was practically empty and the only other sounds were the techno music. Demyx leaned over to Roxas and grinned, saying, "Don't worry, he's always been a sour puss."

Roxas shook his head and sent a disappointed look toward his best friend, before joining Demyx on the DDR platform, only to have the bouncy singer wipe the floor with him.

As the night progressed the group eventually moved away from the arcade and over to the diner, where Roxas ordered the biggest pizza on the band's tab. Demyx began begging Saix to let him have a slice of pizza, but the blue-haired man only snorted in response.

"Please~?" Demyx asked for about the fifth time, tilting his head as his bottom lip quivered. Larxene, who had been interested in the scene at first, soon became bored. Axel knew that the blonde haired singer could keep such begging up for hours, until he either got what he wanted or found something more interesting to occupy his time.

"Demyx." It was Lexaeus that cut in, placing a gentle had on Demyx's shoulder and turning the boy toward him. Bending over so that they were eye level, he spoke as if he were talking to a child. "You know Luxord has you on a diet."

"Yeah, Demyx," Larxene addressed, flipping a lock of hair out of her eyes. "You need to watch your figure. You're getting fat."

For some strange reason, the words pissed Axel off. It was either the way Demyx's eyes died down and he muttered something about ordering a salad before dragging his feet away, or because of the fact that a tooth pick could have looked fat against the blonde's godly body. Either way, he brushed it off and told himself he didn't care, that such things were not his business and after that night, he wouldn't have to worry about what his ex-boyfriend ate.

"So have you two known each other a long time?" Riku was asking Kairi and Sora a bit later at the table as they wolfed down the large pizza.

"Since we were kids," Sora informed, grinning at Kairi, who politely smiled back. "You and Demyx have been friends forever, right? That's what Wikipedia says."

The silver haired boy laughed nervously, eyeing Demyx, who was sitting off to the side, staring off into space. "Well, forever is a long time. We've been friends since high school, really. Demyx, Axel, and I." He looked expectantly toward Axel, who glared in return. Sora and Kairi followed Riku's eyes and it was obvious that they wanted him to say something more on the matter.

"Yep," he confirmed.

"That's so cool," Sora daydreamed. "Axel, how come you never told us you were friends with Riku and Demyx? I wish I had famous friends!"

"I'm not friends with Riku and Demyx," Axel corrected, rolling his eyes. "I used to be their friend. In high school. I'm not in high school anymore, got it memorized?"

"Oh." Sora pouted, but he had nothing on Demyx. He then looked to Riku. "How come?"

"We… grew apart," Riku lied.

Axel snorted gently to himself. Yeah, more like he and Demyx grew apart and Riku decided to follow after the one he actually enjoyed the company of.

The inevitable eventually came. Axel knew it would, he knew from the moment Roxas had told him, 'You're coming with me to a Nobody's concert, I have back stage passes.' Somehow, the rest of the group had wandered off leaving Axel sitting there alone with Demyx. (Well, Saix was still there, but his presence was almost like that of a utensil that sat on the table- Axel barely noticed he was there.) Now, this wouldn't have been bad- in fact, it could have been completely painless- but Demyx just had to rub sat into open wounds. Turning to him, the blonde asked, "So, is he the one?"

Feigning innocence in the hope to avoid said conversation all together, Axel asked, "The one?"

Demyx, of course, was not buying it. His blue eyes were narrowed dangerously in anger and frustration. It was a look Axel had only seen once before and, up until Roxas had won those tickets, he had assumed he would never see again. "The one you left me for."

Having known that question was coming, Axel was already prepared for it. He answered truthfully, "No. Roxas and I are just friends."

It was obvious that Demyx did not believe him, although the blonde seemed to be lost in thought for a few moments as he put two and two together, eventually realizing the timelines didn't add up. He crossed his arms over his chest and looked away. "Yeah, like I'm sure you and 'that guy' were 'just friends'."

It was Axel whose eyes were narrowed, now. "That guy had a name, you know."

Sea blue eyes rolled around as the blonde huffed, his face still turned away. "As if I cared to learn it." He glanced back at Axel then, his face taunting, daring. "I doubt YOU even cared to learn it."

That stung. Axel dramatically threw a hand over his heart. "You wound me, Demyx! You think so little of me?"

Growling deep in his throat, Demyx turned back toward him and leaned across the table. "Yes, I do!"

Before Axel could retaliate, Saix let out a sand that an angry cat might make. Axel rounded a glare at him, but held his tongue, not wanting to die so young. He opted instead to stand and walk outside, choosing to spend the rest of this horrifying night awaiting the time when the group had to leave.

"I'm curious," Roxas admitted as he approached only a few moments later, supporting a stamp on his hand that would allow him to enter the arcade if he so chose. "Why you never mentioned him. You usually tell me everything."

"Some things are better left unsaid," Axel bitterly replied.

"You cheated on him." It wasn't a question. So Roxas had heard the conversation. The redhead flinched in preparation for what he knew Roxas would ask next. "Why?"

Apple green eyes found themselves staring out at traffic, avoiding the blue ones of his best friend. "He's not perfect, you know," was the response he gave. "Behind that voice, that glamour, that stardom, he's only human."

Roxas was smiling in amusement. "You didn't answer my question."

Shooting him a desperate look that begged, 'I'll do your laundry for a month if you don't make me tell you', Axel sighed at the stern one he received in retaliation. Roxas, of course, would not back down. Damn morality right teenager. "I was too happy," he finally admitted.

"Too… happy?" Roxas repeated.

"I was so happy, I was unhappy," the redhead explained, eyes distant. "Because I knew it wouldn't last. Something was bound to go wrong, eventually. Hearts would be broken. So I forced my hand and made sure the heart that was broken wasn't mine."

Roxas looked somewhat horrified, although mostly angered. "That's cruel of you," he stated. "Selfish, and cruel."

Shaking his head, Axel turned his eyes back to the traffic that went on around them, taking no note of the two boys standing outside the loud arcade. "I'm a selfish bastard," he reminded. "I regret doing it, but I can't take it back, now."

A hand was placed on his shoulder as Roxas asked, "Did you apologize?"

In return to his question he received an 'Are you kidding me?' look. "Apologies don't fix everything, Roxas. Have you heard his songs? He hates me."

"Yes, I have heard his songs," Roxas said in his 'are you dumb?' voice. "ALL of them. Including the ones about a person he loves but never sees."

Snorting bitterly, Axel turned away. "Come off it. Some boyfriend, probably."

"Doesn't have one."

Green eyes rolled once more. "Wikipedia doesn't know everything, Roxas."

The group filtered out of the arcade, then, Sora approaching with a large stuffed monkey clenched tightly in his arms. "Look at what Riku gave me!" He told his twin, blue eyes dancing as if he were on cloud nine.

"Where's mine?" Roxas whined in response, forgetting his previously serious state.

"I got you this." It was Demyx who spoke, weaving his way from the back of the group to hand over a small stuffed bear, similar to one that Kairi held in her own hands. He blushed. "I didn't have that many tickets, sorry. But look! I signed the tag."

Glancing toward the paper that was tagged to the bear, Roxas grinned. "Oh, sweet!"

Saix, who had been chatting quietly on his phone, addressed the group as he hung it up. "It is time to head back."

"Aw, okay," Demyx said.

The ride back was spent much like the ride there, with an added layer of sadness. Demyx did not move from his spot against the window and he did not spare any more glances in Axel's direction. His smile was long gone.

They arrived at the arena and slowly began to bid each other farewell. Riku went as far as to kiss Sora's hand gently- always the charmer. Eventually Lexaeus and Saix lead the band away and the four contest winners wandered out to the large parking lot, piling into Sora's car.

"Hold this for me while I buckle up?" Roxas didn't await an answer as he shoved the stuffed bear into Axel's hands.

Wondering why Roxas couldn't have just set it aside, Axel gave the bear a once over before he read the words scribbled onto the tag in black marker. His breath caught in his throat.

Roxas-

Do your favorite singer a favor and tell your best friend I forgave him a long time ago?

XOXO – Dem