I thought this up while re-reading an amazing story that portrays a relationship dynamic I really like; a male and female who are best friends, and know each other inside out. The guy likes the girl, but she doesn't notice (though she kinda likes him too.) I love it, such fun potential. And it's a great scenario for Axel and Larxene. So, yeah, very AU.
Btw, all the italicized dialogue represents a voice over the phone. And, like another one of my drabbles, this features Nintendo's Brawl; so if for whatever reason to don't like that game, uh, don't read I guess?
"Look, Demyx, if you're gonna be an asshole about this, I can just drop the three way calling thing and talk to Roxas alone." Axel glared into his phone as he wandered restlessly around his apartment.
"Whoa now, buddy, I'm just sayin'," Demyx replied, and Axel figured he probably had his hands up in defense. "I think you need some time away from her. Bros before… well, you know what I mean, right?"
"Demyx, I've known Larxene for ten years. She's my best friend, and a good one of your's, I might add. I think she qualifies, as you put it, as a'bro'"
"Hm, well, I dunno about that. I mean, I love Larxene and all that, but I think she's more like a…. Uh, hasn't she had, like, a lot of boyfriends?"
"I'm really not liking the implications of this conversation."
Roxas chose that point to chime in, "You've known Larxene for ten years, Axe?"
"Yeah, Rox, where've you been?"
"Wait so you're 22... and she's 20... So you've known each other since… What, middle school?"
"Eighth and sixth grade respectively."
"What Roxy, did you whip out a calculator to do the math?" Demyx joked, glad the pressure was off him for now.
"No, I had one here already; I'm doing homework. Do you guys know how to do factorials?"
"Why the hell are you doing homework?"
"Because unlike you two, I'm still in school."
"But it's 8:00 at night! On a Saturday!"
"Hey, you're both straying off the subject! I called you guys to have a heartfelt conversation about my feelings, which is something most men would never admit, so I think this should be considered serious!" Axel stopped his walking around, and flopped down on his sofa. Out of the corner of his eye, he could see his Igneous, his Shiba Inu, looking at him oddly.
"Given that I'm only 17 and unwise to the ways of your adult shenanigans, I forgot what the point of this talk was."
"Axel's got his panties in a bunch because Larxene's not talking to him, and now he's all bitchy."
"I'm still about this close from hanging up on you, Dem. Especially since you just said bitchy, while Roxas just said shenanigans."
"Well, excuuuuse me, princess."
"Demyx, stop being mean and listen to him." Roxas muttered distractedly.
"Am I the only one who doesn't care about being single? Suddenly Axel's gone women crazy, right around the time Roxas starts whining about this Naminé."
"Th-that has nothing to do with this! That's just high school drama!"
"Ha, yeah sure."
"Don't tease Roxas, Dem, as funny as it is."
"Ok, fine, serious business time, alright?"
"You like Larxene. I know you like Larxene, I've known since I met you Junior year. I totally get that and I think you two would be good together. Have we established this?"
"Yes, thank you buddy. Continue?"
"I think you're making too big of a deal with this. So she hasn't talked to you in two weeks. So what? C'mon, be a man, dude. Give her her space, you guys'll be fine. I have faith that she'll come back to you again. I'm not gonna tell you to get over her, since I've been trying and failing for five years, but I think it'd be good for you to get over this damn separation anxiety once and for all."
Axel let what his friend said sink in, and since he didn't reply as he thought it over, Roxas jumped in. "I sorta agree with you Demyx, but I think Axel needs a little more sympathy then that. I mean, when was the last time he needed a 'heartfelt conversation'?"
"I think it was when he got drunk off his ass when he found out Larxy wasn't a virgin."
"I didn't need to know that."
"Damn it, Demyx, I told you never to mention that!"
"Nevermind, I'm over it. Look, Axe, I can only speak from my high school experiences, which I'll admit is nowhere near the maturity level of this situation. But I've known you for a while, and I know that you really care about her. You should take the advice you give me and just talk to her."
"I've tried." Axel sighed, rubbing his forehead tiredly. "She won't answer. That boyfriend of hers doesn't want her talking to me."
"Asshole." Demyx stated. "The way I see it, you've got two options. One: you realize you don't own her, move on, get over her, find someone else, and be happy for her."
"No." Axel replied firmly. "Sorry if that makes me look like the asshole, but I've known her since the Eighth grade, and I've liked her for about that long too. Ten years. And she's been dating other guys for about… seven of those years. Don't you think that if I was able to move on and let her be, I would have? And don't even start with that 'just be happy for her' bullshit. That's all my mother told me in school, and right now, I'm not talking to my mother!I was the one there for her to pick up the pieces whenever something bad happened, always! Ten years of being her friend, seven years' worth of being her rock. I think I'm a little entitled to feel possessive, right?"
The other two were silent, so he continued, "I have dated other girls, but none of them could make me forget." He paused again as he gathered his thoughts, ah screw it flashing across his mind. "…I love her, OK? I… really, really love her. I don't want anyone else. She's… she's my soul mate, and it kills me to think she doesn't feel the same way."
There was a mildly stunned silence as, though they all knew it and it never really had to be said, this was the first time he'd actually used the word "love."
Demyx then broke the silence cheerfully. "And that's exactly what I was hoping you'd say, lover boy. Option Number Two: you call her, go over to her house, or whatever, and tell her all that."
"But… I don't think she'll listen."
"Make her listen." Roxas said.
Axel sighed heavily, letting his head fall back against the cushions. None of them said anything, until Demyx interjected the stillness with, "Should we leave you to your thoughts then?"
"Yeah, that'd be nice. Thanks, you guys."
"Any time, pal."
"Ok, seriously guys, factorials?"
Axel hung up, and leaned back against the couch. He felt like that little kid crushing on his best friend all those years ago. Middle school, high school, college; it was all the same, a never ending cycle of… unneeded stress. It got worse when he'd finished college, and she'd continued; he wasn't there to keep that "wild college life" in check. Really, he should just up and tell her how he felt, assuming she hadn't been able to figure it out by now. It wasn't like he didn't have a chance: they fit well together, they knew each other better than anyone else, they'd both openly admitted that the other was very attractive, and they'd mentioned to each other that they'd make great boyfriend/girlfriend material.
But it was the old best friend cliché: he didn't want to risk messing up their friendship. So he'd settled (unhappily, but willingly) into the role of the there-for-you-when-he's-gone-best friend. Demyx was right, in that Larxene had had a lot of boyfriends, so his role was rather solid. She'd meet some guy, they'd go out for a certain amount of time (it was different every time, but much too long for Axel.) Then they'd break up, for a variety of reasons, and he'd get his friend back. He'd gotten used to this cycle, but never the part in-between that involved her distancing from him, for whatever reason. That was what hurt him, and it got worse with each new guy.
He didn't know how long he sat there brooding for, but he was contemplating going to bed, when his phone rang. He grunted and picked it up quickly. "No, Roxas, I don't know how to do factorials." He said dryly.
"No surprise there, seeing as you never did." A smooth voice answered.
"L-Larxene!" He jerked in shock so violently that he fell off his sofa. Holy hell, was she psychic?
He took a few moments to reply, as his shock was so great, he had trouble getting off the floor. Then he couldn't think of anything to say, failing multiple times to get out a syllable.
"Is this a bad time?" Larxene asked carefully. "Should I call back later?"
"N-no, don't hang up! I'm ok, I just, didn't expect it to be you…." He coughed awkwardly. "So, uh, you need something? Something wrong? You need me to come over? No, wait, that might be a bad idea, never mind that then… I'll just… stay on the phone instead, I guess."
She didn't say anything, but he heard her make a distressed, rather guilty noise. He coughed again, "Sorry, still flustered. I meant to say, to what do I owe this pleasant surprise?"
There was a nervous silence, and then the tone she was using before dropped, replaced with one that was quiet and rather timid (which was an immediate red flag for him.) "Can… Can I come over?"
"… Really? You want to?"
"Do you mind?"
"No, of course not. Have I ever?"
"No…" He was relieved to hear a grateful smile in her voice. "I just thought I should ask…."
"There's never been a need, and there never will be. Now I expect to see you here in twenty minutes, hon. Oh, and bring Blitz, Iggy misses her."
"… Thanks Axe."
"Of course, dear."
They hung up, and Axel found himself flopping against his sofa cushions again in a rather stressed mood. His heart was pounding, and his spirits were soaring, yes, but there was a bitter undertone when he realized that the cycle was coming full circle yet again. Finally, she was his again, but this was the part that involved trying to sever that last connection with the other guy.
He figured he'd probably have to take Demyx up on his option Number Two; maybe this was a sign to end this damn cycle.
He'd expected to hear a doorbell or a knock; instead, there was a loud meow, and a cream colored cat slipped through the dog door he'd forgotten to close, jumping on him purring before moving on to greet Iggy. Figured his dog would have better luck with a cat than he did with his best friend.
"Sorry my cat's weird." Larxene's voice called from the other side of the door as he stood. "She got too excited."
"I can't blame her. I'd get excited too if I was going to visit someone like me." Axel replied, opening the door. And before he could greet her properly, she'd thrown her arms around him in a forceful hug. He met her tackle with surprising stability, which made him wonder if he was about to do the same thing to her without realizing it. He hugged her back just as tightly.
"I missed you, Sparky." he said quietly.
"I'm sorry." she mumbled back. "I'm so sorry."
He let her go and closed the door, then lead her to the sofa. "If you'll allow me to be blunt, you really need to stop doing this to me."
"I know, I don't mean to." She sighed, sitting down next to him. "It just kinda… happens."
He sat and thought for a minute, before getting back up. "Oh wait, sorry, you want a drink or something?"
"Aspirin would be nice." she muttered. "My head hurts."
"Oh, shit. Were you crying? Tell me you weren't." he said, heading to the kitchen. "I hate to think of you getting that upset…. Again."
"You know me too well." She didn't normally get headaches, but it was common for her to get bad ones under stress or after a break down.
"So I'm assuming you're here because of your guy, right?"
"Y-yeah…. I'm sorry… I don't want you to think I only see you as my 'go-to-after-break-ups guy.' You know I love you, right?"
"Of course I do, don't apologize." He said, returning with the medicine she'd requested and a glass of water. He decide to ignore the twinge of disappointment at her use of the word 'love.' There was a momentary silence, and he switched between looking at her and the pets - where his hyper dog was trying to get blitz to play with him. "So you really liked him?"
"Yes, but probably not as much as I think you're trying to imply." There was another silence as he looked at her expectantly. Seeing as how he hadn't spoken with her in quite a while, he didn't know anything about her relationship, so she had to do the talking, and he'd do his part later. She caught on to his thoughts and let out a whimper. "What's wrong with me, Axel?"
He was caught off guard. "No-nothing, honey! Nothing at all."
"Then why can't I keep anyone for more than a couple of weeks? The longest was three months, three months. Ok, sure, yeah, I break off some of them, but it's them most of the time. How long have I been in the dating game?"
"Seven years." He replied automatically.
"Again, you know me too well." she smiled, and went on, "Seven years and I still can't find someone. There has to be something wrong with me."
"Not necessarily. You're just thinking too much into it."
She turned to him suddenly, "You've been with other girls."
"Yes I have, dear. Your point being?"
"Well, you're still single; what went wrong? … Oh, um, if you don't mind me asking…."
"No, I don't mind. Nothing really went wrong, per se…. They just weren't…." He considered answering truthfully, but figured that should wait. So he went with a 'kinda but not fully the truth' truth. "They weren't what I was looking for."
"…What are you looking for?" She asked curiously. "We don't talk about that much."
He felt his face heat up and he hoped she didn't notice. "Gah, this isn't about me, Sparky. Uh… Did he say anything… when he broke up with you?"
She grunted. "No, just the whole "it's not you, it's me" deal. Shit I've heard too many times."
He sat and thought for a bit. "Hm… Well, I can't think of what could be wrong with you…. Though I'm not a good person to ask that, you know I think you're awesome. I really don't know why any male wouldn't stay with a pretty lady like you…. Holy shit, you're not pregnant are you?"
She choked on the sip of water she'd just taken. "What?"
"Hey, I'm just asking. It's a rather… um, explainable reason for a guy to leave his girl…. You're not are you? Please say you aren't."
"No, I'm not."
"Oh, good, that's a relief. I'm not ready to be a father."
"…Axel, it wouldn't be yours." She said, an amused tone to her voice.
"I'm insulted that you'd think I'd let my best friend in the world go through something like that alone. Baby, you cut me deep, real deep…. What's that look for?"
"Nothing," she sighed, resting her head on his shoulder. "It's just… sometimes I think you're the problem."
"I… I'm sorry, I guess?"
"Oh, no, I didn't mean it like that. It's not a bad thing, not to me anyway. I just think, maybe, they've all felt intimidated by you, that they can't compete with this thing we've got."
"So they try to keep you away from me in hopes of winning?" he said, rather bitterly.
"I… I guess. I never really noticed until recently. I'm sorry if I hurt you, I didn't mean to."
"Things can't be helped. But, like I said, this isn't about me, it's about you." He ran a hand over her hair and looked into her eyes. "You don't seem as upset over this break up as you were over others, but as you've been saying, I know you too well. You're hurting, and it's my job to make you better, isn't that right? And I dunno about you," he added, standing and heading over to his television, "but I've got a bone to pick with this asshole who kept you away from me." He turned the TV and his gaming system on, and tossed her a controller. "Here, Third Player, cause I know you like the yellow."
"What?" she laughed, "Brawl? Why do you want to play video games at a time like this?"
"See, I've realized that playing fighting games is a great way to blow off steam, cause you can just pretend your opponent is whoever or whatever you're mad at. It's quite fun, actually. So, who's your least favorite character? Red Team's gonna handle 'em."
So after a solid two hours of Captain Falcon, Zelda, and Sheik beating the shit out of Jigglypuff (and coming up with rather impressive team strategies that they needed to use the next time they were playing with their friends), Axel began to notice that his partner was starting to have Recovery problems, and figured they should call it a night. Larxene complained a bit, but he said she was more than welcome to spend the night; so she got up and headed to his room, announcing that she was going to steal some of his clothes and warned him not to walk in on her. "Again."
And he watched her in grateful satisfaction when he realized that no boyfriend would ever be able to stop her from acting like she owned his place.
When she declared that she was finished, he went to his room and found her flopped down on his bed. He changed quickly (not bothering to do so in his bathroom, since he really didn't care as much as she did if she watched him change or not) and joined her.
"The lights are still on." she mumbled into a pillow.
"Oh, right. You should get them."
"You get them, it's your room." She tilted her head to glare at him with one eye.
"But I'm tired."
He looked over at her with gentle concern, getting up again to turn the lights off. "Been a rough night for you, huh, Sparky?"
She exhaled in a way that was like a cross between a scoff and a simple expression of exhaustion.
"Don't worry, honey, it'll get better. It always does." He switched the lights off, then headed back to her. "Cause you've got me." he continued, purposefully lying down on top of her, causing her to squeal loudly.
"Get off me, you fatass." she laughed, and he made an overly offended noise.
"Oh. Well I never."
"You're such a prima donna." she said, pushing him off.
"You love me." He pulled her closer to him.
Silence fell over them, and Axel felt that twinge again. Demyx's suggestion came to him once more, and it seemed like a rather plausible option; given how easily they'd fallen back into their usual routine, his fear that she wouldn't listen to him was thrown out the window. Though, now he was thinking that it'd be rather inconsiderate to ask her out so soon after a break up. But, he also didn't really care. Maybe, in the morning.
"You promise you'll come over again soon?" Axel urged as Larxene got ready to leave. She was ready at the open door, and he was just stalling for time.
"Yes, Axel, stop asking me, you baby." she replied, rolling her eyes. "The dogs seem to have disappeared somewhere; mind if Strike just stays here for a bit?"
"Yeah, sure, I don't mind. Then Rhyo won't be so lonely when I leave."
They stood there awkwardly for a bit, before Larxene spoke up, "Hey, thank you, again… for being my rock."
"That's what I'm here for, isn't it?"
She shook her head, "No, but it's a perk."
Another rather awkward silence, which Larxene broke again, "I should go, then. I need to… I dunno, call my mother or something."
"That's always fun."
She huffed, "You know, she insists I should just date you, cause you're a 'nice boy who would never hurt me.' Which is true, but I wouldn't really call you a nice boy…." She eyed him carefully, "What's that look for?"
"I've been… thinking."
"About…?" she urged, an eyebrow raising.
"Uh… I… I…" he inhaled deeply. "Screw it."
He wrapped his arms around her, pulled her closer and kissed her full on the lips. She gave a surprised squeak, though she didn't move away. But, it was enough for him to pull back quicker then he wanted to, leaving her dazed. "Shit, I'm sorry, I shouldn't have done that." he said in a rush, "That was… really tactless, you're still on the rebound-"
She cut him off by placing one hand on his cheek, the other behind his head to pull him back down to meet her lips again. It was his turn to be surprised, but he kissed her back quickly. It certainly hadn't been what he was expecting, both his boldness and her reaction, but damn, he'd accept it. It continued for quite a while until lack of air broke them apart; he rested his forehead against hers.
"That wasn't from rebound," she said softly, "but give me a little time, OK?"
"Is that a yes?" he asked hopefully.
"That's a I'll call you when I get home." she replied with a light smirk. She almost pulled away from him, but changed her mind and kissed him again. This one lasted about as long as the previous, only broken because of a wolf-whistle from one of the neighbors.
"I should go now, finally." she said, hugging him tightly.
"Alright, get going." He replied, nudging her away. "Call me when you get home, we'll plan a date. Uh, I mean… you know what I mean."
She smiled at him before turning and beginning to head to her car. "Oh, and by the way," she said, facing him again. "Yes, you have my permission to gossip this with your boys. Since you probably will, anyway."
"You know me too well."
I noticed a few things while writing this:
- I really like writing them as normal humans. I might play around with this "world" you could call it, cause it's cute.
- I seem to have made Roxas more mature then Demyx. Hm.
- I'm a nerd.
I left Larxene's ex up for interpretation; though in my head it was probably Marluxia, I prefer to think of him as another friend of hers, like Demyx and Roxas are to Axel.