Disclaimer: Me owning Wicked would be real fan fiction.

Notes: Well, it took a month to write, but this is a monster, twenty page chapter, so hopefully your patience will be rewarded! (Especially since a month is fast for me.) By being patient, I also mean waiting for the Fiyeraba action, other than lovers' sprawls and internal laments. It's gonna happen eventually. I'm not guaranteeing it'll last forever (WHAT?), and almost all other pairings are up for grabs, so feel free to comment on who you think would go well together. I'm only mentioning it since this is the party chapter- lots of shipping going on.

Also, I know in a previous chapter, I may have said something about Avaric's backstory that contradicts this chapter, but if I did, I'm sure you've forgotten it after so long, so just stick with what's in this chapter, and I'll edit the earlier chapters later. (Obviously, you've figured out this isn't Bookverse Avaric.)

Warning: Some swearing. Nothing that's censored on TV, though, as proved by Norbert Leo Butz's marvelous "Don't Break the Rules" and Spring Awakening's "Bitch of Living."

xXx

Fiyero Tiggular had just committed murder.

His hands were stained red with blood, as opposed to Elphaba's natural emerald stain. Actually, they looked much like a Lurlinemas tree, seeing as Elphaba's hands were his hands, blood splattering the surface of his skin. He'd almost expected her blood to be dark green like her skin before remembering that that was Vulcans, even if she was smart enough to be one.

He didn't want her getting framed, as she surely would with all of the blood evidence he'd left behind. Still, the murder was her fault. She'd given him the roses to give to Avaric, after all. Surely she knew roses had thorns, sharp enough not only to pierce someone's skin, but someone's heart.

Avaric deserved what he got, he thought as he watched his own blood drip slowly over his victim.

So did Elphaba.

So did you.

Yeah. They deserved each other.

xXx

Two Hours Earlier…

"Skank."

"Whore."

"Hooker."

"Slut."

"Harlot."

"Bitch!"

Fiyero's eyes widened as the word flew out of his mouth. Granted, he'd meant it as the dirty equivalent to "Dear Old Shiz!", but come to think of it, it did describe what he saw in front of him.

Elphabitch. If she acted like it, she might as well dress like it. Unlike the others he'd stolen from Galinda's wardrobe, this dress was just low enough to be not a tease but a jeer; it was shorter than a munchkin and far trashier, but trashy in a way that made it plain to everyone that its wearer was pure gold. (Emerald, to be specific.)

He wasn't trying to make her look hideous; if he'd wanted that, he'd wear the same old drab dresses she always hid herself behind. Instead, he was showing the world the true Elphaba, the one she hated because of the unattainable image it held her up to. Bitchy, yes. But beautiful.

And to top it off…

"A ski cap," he declared, modeling it in the mirror. "The earflaps really do bring out my eyes."

Elphaba had already thought Avaric was colorblind for dating her, but Fiyero now had the proof he needed. When Avaric spotted his date, he promptly rammed his car into one of Shiz's vine-draped walls, effectively stopping the vehicle. Didn't he know that green meant go?

Fiyero slid into the passenger seat next to Avaric. "I thought we weren't crashing the party."

Avaric actually could have used a dictionary in mind now as he stuttered mindless nonsense, his eyes bulging at his examination of her. Only when he reached her head was he able to regain his speech: "Are you expecting it to snow?"

"I dunno. Ask Morrible."

Avaric nodded, backing the car up from the wall, the fender crushed and the motor protesting. "You look… um…"

"Bitchy?"

In response, Avaric rammed into a stop sign. "Maybe you should drive."

Well, he'd drive him insane, alright.

xXx

"OH MY OZ! LEFT, LEFT!"

"Right!"

"No, no, I said left!"

"I know you said left, I said right, you're right!"

"My right? There is a solid wall on my right!"

"Are you crazy? I already said you were left… I mean, right!"

"Say it one more time, and you're the one whose gonna get left!"

"You want me to say that you're wrong?"

"Damn straight!"

"You're wrong?"

"No, I'm not- straight, Avaric, STRAIGHT!"

"You're not straight? Wait- you mean you're a lesbian?"

"At this rate, I'm gonna be road kill- WATCH OUT! FLYING MONKEY!"

CRASH!

"False alarm. It was just funny shaped piece of litter."

"YOU'RE GAY?"

"Well, no, this date isn't making me happy at all. In fact, it's the kind of thing that's gonna make me gay- CHIPMONK!"

"Oops. I think that was a real monk. I wonder why he looks so pissed off."

"It's probably my skin."

SCREECH!

"Avaric! You almost hit him!"

"Damn, I missed?"

"It's okay, just open the window. HEY, YOU! MONKY! HERE HAVE SOME MONEY! IT MAKES THINGS BETTER!"

"Huh. It appears you were right about flying monkys."

When they finally arrived at the Ozdust ballroom six trees, two bicycles, and a piece of trash that Fiyero initially mistook for the escaped lion cub later, Avaric chivalrously helped his date out of the car and reached in the pocket of his surprisingly formal tuxedo. "Elphaba, I wanted to make this the perfect date, so I read some of the old classics to see how they did it."

"Classics?"

"You know, Titanic, Romeo and Juliet, Wicked."

"I see. Is that why you were trying to kill us with your driving?"

Instead, he pulled out a rose.

Fiyero's eyes widened. "OH MY OZ! YOU KILLED MY UNCLE!"

"Your uncle?" Avaric gaped at the rose, horrified.

"There's a reason my father named my sister NessaROSE, you know!"

"Oh, god, and I crushed the ant that was crawling in its petals too!"

Fiyero patted Avaric's back mockingly. "Well, what do you have to say for yourself?"

"Er… is this why you wear black all the time? Because people are constantly spraying pesticide on your relatives?"

"Which is probably the only reason I'd want to marry you," Fiyero growled. "Perhaps you could grace us with a eulogy for my poor Uncle Rose? Wait… Rose is a girl's name. Better make it Bob, my uncle Bob."

Avaric cleared his throat, staring guilelessly into Fiyero's eyes. "Quite frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."

In response, Fiyero slapped him. "I knew it!"

"No, no, no, it's a pick up line!" Avaric protested. "You know, Gone with the Wind?"

"Oh, you will be!"

xXx

As she swirled the cherry around her drink, Nessa sighed, staring longingly at her boyfriend, who was staring longingly at the other end of the room. She knew she should have requested a table there; the lighting was so much better. After all, Galinda did seem to glow. "Hey, Boq. What's in the punch?"

"Uh…" Boq squinted, not taking his eyes off the table across the room. "Vodka, I think." His eyes widened as a couple entered the room. Nessa was ready to scold him when she saw it too. "Unnamed God, I thought Galinda was helping her with her fashion sense!"

"Unnamed God, I let her help me with mine!" Boq squeaked. "Er…" His eyes darted between Nessa, the table across the room, and Elphaba. "I'll be Boq- er, back, I'll be back." Before she could question him, he sprinted away to Elphaba's side.

Nessa sighed. Great. My boyfriend prefers the company of my anti-social, devil-skinned sister to me. Maybe I haven't been putting out enough? I mean, Romeo and Juliet prayed with their lips, right? Right?

That's how the rest of the evening would go. Everyone playing musical chairs, from Elphaba to Galinda to Avaric to Fiyero to Elphaba again to a random waitress serving punch who got in the way. But never back to her. Everyone else could leave their chairs when the music started back up, but not her. The only difference was, in musical chairs, everyone wanted to be in a chair. In life, no one wanted to be stuck in one. They were all busy dancing through.

Even with shoddy lighting, one thing was perfectly clear.

It must be the supposedly low fat fries that was adding weight on her shoulders.

xXx

Maybe Elphaba was right about one thing: people really were always staring at her. Fiyero shot Elphaba's famous glare at all the onlookers: She's my girl. Get your own. Yeah, that means you, Shenshen… wait, what?

He studied Avaric suspiciously. "Didn't you promise to go to the party with whomever won the catfight?" he asked, pointing to Shenshen and Pfannee, who were sending him competing death glares that only made them look like they were experiencing cardiac arrest.

"Nah, I was just saving Fiyero's hide," Avaric chuckled. "Then I pointed them in the direction of that Biq kid, but I guess they decided to just take each other. I wonder what's wrong with their eyes."

"Why would you bother helping Fiyero?" He shot a glare across the room, where Galinda and Elphaba were sitting down to eat.

Avaric noticeably relaxed. "He's a rich, brainless jerk, but you could say the same about me, minus the rich part. Both of us crafted bad reputations for ourselves, but we don't always follow through."

"What do you mean?"

He could tell it irritated Avaric to speak kindly about a potential competitor, but if he didn't answer, he couldn't compliment himself either. "Well, you've heard the rumors about all the girls he's slept with, but don't you think Galinda would dump him if he was that unfaithful? Besides, sex in the headmistress's office with rope, syrup, and a spare car tire?"

"I never did that!"

"Well, of course not, you've been waiting for me to come along," Avaric smiled seductively, grabbing Fiyero's hand.

He let out a small shriek. "Not the skin!"

Terrified of offending her, Avaric let go. "Skin?"

"You know I'm sensitive about the skin, and you go ahead and touch it? I'll have you know, green skin is super… uh, environmentally friendly."

"Huh?"

"Spark Notes Version: no holding hands. No holding anything. In fact, no touching anything at all. We must be separated by ten feet at all times, and…"

"Thank god we use the metric system," Avaric smirked before cutting him off with his lips. Fiyero's eyes widened in horror as Avaric proceeded to give him a full tour of his mouth, which was absolutely traumatizing even if it was tainted with the usual scent of whisky. Even embarrassing Elphaba wasn't worth this, since he was embarrassing himself more than anything.

On the bright side, he thought as he shoved Avaric away, now I know I'm definitely not gay.

For some reason, Avaric looked disappointed. Fiyero's eyes narrowed. "What? Am I that bad of a kisser?"

"Not enough data."

"Not enough data? I'll have you know, I've kissed people in places that didn't even know existed! People would sell their gold, and their souls, and their favorite shampoo just to kiss me once! And, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named-That-Is-Not-Voldemort, once is enough," he groaned, backing away from Avaric, who had regained his smirk.

"Well, then, thanks for giving me a discount," Avaric clucked.

"Uh…" Fiyero scanned the room for a fire alarm he could pull or a pitcher of water he could suicidally dump over his head, or preferably, Avaric's. "I'll be- BOQ!"

Avaric stared after him as he ran for his life, or Elphaba's virginity at least. "Why wouldn't I think you were coming back?"

Fiyero nearly collided with the overwhelmed munchkin, grabbing his shoulder and shaking him as they asked simultaneously, "What do I do?"

"You're being attacked by Avaric's mouth too?" Fiyero gaped.

"What? Do you think Galinda would be impressed if I saved her from it?" Boq asked.

"Um…" Fiyero cast a glance over the munchkin's shoulder at the table across the room where Galinda didn't look very impressed at all. "Tell you what, how about you go have stimulating conversation with Fiyero while I prep Galinda."

"You're doing WHAT with Galinda?" Boq squeaked.

Fiyero ignored the munchkin's outburst. "Do you think I could convince her that Avaric's cheating on me? Hey, maybe she could turn him into a frog!"

"And then you'd be compatible!" Boq shrank back at Fiyero's glare, mumbling something about anatomic impossibilities and the impossibility of him telling a good joke.

"Just follow me, mini-man," Fiyero ordered, dragging the munchkin with him as his stilettos clicked across the dance floor, his eyes targeted on a bubbly blonde and an athletic yet luminous prince.

xXx

"The hors-d'oeuvres look delicious," Galinda commented, her menu laid out in front of her on the table.

Elphaba responded with a disinterested shrug.

The blonde leaned closer. "Don't I look delicious too?"

"I wouldn't know," Elphaba replied nonchalantly, lowering her menu. "I'm not a cannibal."

Galinda squealed, throwing herself at Elphaba, who quickly raised her menu to block the blonde's puckered lips. "Uh… hors d'oeuvres… look at the calories!"

Hastily, Galinda scanned her menu, her eyes widening. "Oz, you're right!"

Elphaba attempted a smile without wincing before ducking behind her menu once more. She'd thought impersonating Fiyero would be easy as impersonating a scarecrow; all she'd have to do was stand there and look dumb. Then, of course, he'd ruined everything by showing her he had character after all. That although he didn't always think, that he was thoughtful. And kind. And charming.

Charming? Charmed, maybe. What wasn't charming was Galinda constantly hanging on her, touching her everywhere except in her heart. The hard part was, there was nothing not to love about Galinda. Like Fiyero, she was smarter than she acted in addition to being charismatic. She'd be more than popular in her future.

But damn it, I love someone else!

wait, who?

One person who loved her came to mind, but she shook the adulterous thought away. Galinda and Fiyero deserved each other, and she deserved neither of them.

"Fiyero?" Elphaba peered above her menu to find Boq standing beside Galinda. "Biq wants to speak with you."

"Who?"

"Biq."

"I don't know any Biq's. Could you by any chance be referring to Boq?"

"Boq?" Galinda sounded.

"Yes?" the munchkin squeaked.

"Wait, your name is BOQ?" Galinda screeched. "Sweet Lurline, why in Oz didn't you correct me earlier? Everyone must think I'm really stupid!"

"Not really stupid," Elphaba supplied.

"Actually, because you're so popular, everyone calls me Biq now," Boq replied sheepishly. "They're convinced I don't know my own name."

"How mortifying!" Galinda cried. "I absolutely have to do something about this. Something scandalacious. Something radical."

Boq perked up. "You're going to dance with me?"

"No," Galinda scoffed. "I'm going to change my name!"

"Ch-change your name?" Boq squeaked. "B-but, you're already perfect just as you are."

"Then I'll be more perfect! Besides, maybe this way my hand won't cramp up as much when I'm signing all my fan mail." She cleared her throat, addressing anyone who hadn't already gone deaf from the DJ's songs. "From now on, my name is Glinda," Galinda- or rather, Glinda, declared. "The 'Ga' is silent." She giggled at herself. "What do you think, Fifi?"

"I think that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard of," Elphaba declared.

Glinda frowned. "That means you like the name, right?"

"Actually, I was referring to your nickname for me."

"That's all very nice, but weren't you going to ask Fiyero to dance or something, Boq?" Elphaba groaned as she realized Boq was accompanied by Fiyero, although even knowing they'd switched bodies, she scarcely recognized him beneath the layers of glitter and frilly mesh. He raised his eyebrow at her in greeting, waiting for a reaction to his apparel.

"Wow, you really are trying to dress like a sweet transvestite," Elphaba declared. "And I think that was in last eon's Fashionozsta, you really need to read more."

Judging from everyone's pained stares, this was not the anticipated reaction.

"Then again, I do wear gay white tights," she continued.

"They're tight, not tights!" Fiyero protested. "Besides, even those aren't as faux pas as this outfit! Right? Right?"

Is he proud of his fashion incompetence? She answered that quickly with a, Of course he's proud of his incompetence. Life's more painless for the brainless. Aloud, she said, "Yes, Elphaba, your outfit is a good substitution for Avaricide."

"They sell that?" Fiyero's eyes widened. "I mean- I need to talk to Galinda!"

"Who?" the blonde asked.

"Damn it, you don't know your own name either?"

"Don't you?" Glinda snapped.

"Of course," Fiyero scoffed. "It's AVARIC!"

"Elphie, you're supposed to be smart!" Glinda whined as Fiyero dove under the table. Really, Elphaba should have been insulted that Glinda hadn't noticed her lapse in intelligence until now. Instead, she merely pointed to the man standing behind Glinda, garbed in a formal tux.

Glinda gasped. "No one told me Avaric had a twin brother!"

"Twin?" Avaric scoffed. "I'm one of a kind, baby. Speaking of one of a kind, Galinda, have you seen Elphaba?"

"Nope," the blonde sniffed. "GA-linda hasn't seen Elphaba."

"Damn." Avaric snapped his fingers. "This would be a lot easier if they weren't shining green strobe lights everywhere."

"Check the girl's restroom," Elphaba suggested dryly.

Avaric's eyes lit up. "Hey, that's a good idea!"

Elphaba buried her head in her hands as he dashed off. "Men are so stupid."

"Fiyero, what's up with you always calling yourself stupid?" Boq asked.

Fiyero crawled out from underneath the table, accidently pushing Boq into Elphaba in the process. "Hey, why don't you two talk about esteem issues while I have stimulating conversation with Galinda?"

"It's GLINDA!"

"You're Glinda!" Fiyero shot back.

"Yes!"

"You're yes… oh. Sweet Oz, have I been pronouncing your name wrong this whole time? Am I a moron or what?"

"You're a Mormon?" Glinda asked, confused.

"We are not Mormons!" Nessa's voice shouted from a few tables down. "Boq, what is taking so long with that punch?"

"Trust me, more than one person's been waiting to punch you for a while," Elphaba muttered under her breath.

"One minute!" Boq called to Nessa as he shot Elphaba a quizzical look, then pulled her aside. "So, Fiyero, I just wanted to talk to you about… um… um. Yes, um."

"Um?" Elphaba repeated dubiously.

"Yeah, it's a conjunction."

"It is not!"

"Uh- is too!"

"It is not, um is an interjection representing a hesitation in speech for people who are too unschooled to use words actually in the dictionary…" Elphaba trailed off as the munchkin prodded her on. "No. Um is a distraction. What is Elphaba talking to Glinda about?"

"Er… er!"

"What?"

"No, not what, er!"

"Oh, you're erring alright…"

"I'm not trying to steal your girlfriend!"

"Of course not, since Galinda is in love with me for some reason. I mean, I can't imagine why. It's not like I'm charming, or funny, or, god forbid handsome! Not even my contagious smile. Or my dreamy blue eyes that look like they've captured the sea. And, AND I HAVE STUPID HAIR!" she shouted in Fiyero's direction. Boq was staring at her incredulously, as the entire ballroom would have been had the DJ not been blasting "Follow the Yellow Brick Road" so loudly. "Well?" she demanded. "What do you have to say about that?"

"Er… and how do you feel about that?"

"Feel? I thought I'd grown out of feeling until a certain stupid- Damn it, you're distracting me again!"

"No, I'm not!"

"Yes, you are!"

"No, I'm not!"

"Yes, you- Boq!"

"What?" the munchkin asked innocently. "I'm not distracting y- ooh, look, shiny thing!"

"Where? No, you know where I'm going? Back to my date!" She stormed off to her table in time to see a frantic Fiyero being dragged away by Avaric. From her booth, Glinda waved at her seductively, patting the spot next to her. She groaned. Maybe Frex was right, and there is a such thing as hell.

xXx

Fiyero forced a wide grin as he watched Boq escort Elphaba out of earshot. "Hey, Glinda, you know I'm smart, right?"

"Of course," Glinda said with a wink. "And Avaric knows it."

"Right, well, because I'm so smart, I have this brilliant idea!" Fiyero declared. "How about I dump Avaric, and you dump Fiyero?" He grinned as widely as he could, giving her two thumbs up. "It'll be fun."

Glinda giggled. "Your popularity training is going really well, Elphie! I actually understood that joke."

No, Fiyero thought, you really didn't. Aloud, he said, "You know, there are better solutions to problems than changing one's name." Since you seem pretty eager to change your last name too.

"I know, but it's so pretty, isn't it?" Glinda said.

"Solutions aren't always pretty," he replied. "Or sometimes they're too pretty, and that's why there's a problem in the first place."

Glinda squinted. "We're talking about your fashion faux pas, right?"

Fiyero sighed. "In a way."

"Well, if Avaric dared take you out in that, it means he must really love you," Glinda said. "Just go for it, Elphie!"

"Okay," he sounded. "Now, were those hors-d'oeuvres I saw being served?"

In response, Glinda pointed behind him. Fiyero glanced over his shoulder to find a tray of hors-d'oeuvres being extended towards him. He sniffed them suspiciously. "Yeah, these'll make my breath smell." In one swift motion, he grabbed an entire pile and showed fistfuls into his mouth. As he reached for another stack, the hors-d'oeuvres toppled down to reveal…

"AVARIC!"

Avaric grinned. "At your service."

"Er… I didn't know you worked here," Fiyero said. "But I completely understand if you have to cancel. I mean, I'm sure drunken college kids tip okay, and it's not like Fiyero leaves you that much money in your Lurlinemas stocking…"

"WHAT?" Avaric nearly dropped the tray. Fiyero winced at his slip, dually dangerous since he'd never revealed himself as the mysterious money-man that left generous tips every Lurlinemas since he'd hired Avaric as his taxi driver. After all, he'd known the boy would never earn enough money to pay tuition otherwise, and he didn't want to imagine what kind of trouble Avaric would get into on the streets. Hell, he might have even outshined Fiyero's reputation! So he'd let the boy shadow him from school to school, but they'd never become friends. He was a prince, after all, and Avaric's employer. And yet, now they were dating.

"It's not what you think," Fiyero said slowly to the shocked boy. "I mean, just because it's Fiyero's money with his face printed on the dollar bills doesn't mean Fiyero put it there…"

"You mean Fiyero's Santa Claus?" Avaric sounded. "No wonder I always got coal! Damn cheapskate!"

"Hey! That's my boyfriend!" Glinda shouted.

"Sorry," Avaric said.

"What?" Glinda sounded. "No, over there, that's my boyfriend coming!" She pointed to an approaching Elphaba, who paused midstride, looking rather green despite her princely complexion. "Now let me finish my date!"

"Do unto others as you'd like them to do unto you," Avaric grinned, grabbing Fiyero's hand and pulling him up. "I found a seat by the window."

"Good," Fiyero sounded. "Because I might need some AIRRRRRRR!" He screeched as Avaric pulled him along, weaving him through the dancers and escorting him to a romantically lit table, garnished with fake flowers that were clearly of no relation to Elphaba.

"A rose by any other name…" Avaric began to recite.

In response, Fiyero reached into the canister of condiments and stuck straws up his nose.

He expected Avaric to scream and run for his life. Instead, Avaric laughed. "I did that when I was a kid. I pretended to be the Elephant Princess of the Scrow." He plucked two straws out of the canister and mimicked Fiyero. To his surprise, Fiyero didn't scream or run. He snorted in laughter instead, the straws falling out of his nose. After all, Avaric did look pretty ridiculous. "Yeah, Fiyero didn't like it much, though. He said that the Vinkus was ruled by him, not some Animal."

"I suppose they're indistinguishable sometimes," Fiyero admitted. Wait… I'm supposed to be disgusting Avaric, not discussing him! Hell, I am not doing anything involving my lips with him.

Okay, fine, you're doing it so by the time Elphaba gets her body back, he'll reject her when she comes running to him and handing him roses. Same rose by any other name.

Try two. Fiyero screamed. "I'M BLEEDING!"

"B-But fake roses don't have thorns!" Avaric stammered. "Oz, was it the straws? Did they give you nose bleed?"

"No, no, no, I just have my period," Fiyero said. "Makes me wanna kill babies."

"Then you'd better stay away from Fiyero," Avaric advised.

Fiyero slammed his fist against the table. "Seriously, that's the third time you've mentioned him! Are you in love with him or something?"

"Me?" Avaric scoffed. "Quite the opposite. It's just… well, I kinda thought you might be." He smiled at her sheepishly. "It's just, every girl I've ever chased after takes one look at him and ends up making interesting noises with him in the backseat while I drive the taxi."

"You've never heard of armpit fart contests?" Fiyero protested.

"You know what I mean." Avaric rolled his eyes. "I mean, sure, maybe I have my fun, but at least I don't do it playing games."

"I've always liked Pretty Pretty Princess," Fiyero commented.

"So did Fiyero. He always stole the crown from me."

"Well, he was a prince," Fiyero replied, wincing at the past tense. "But if you played that together, you can't be only enemies."

"No, we're worse. We're rivals."

"Well, whenever you feel that way, pretend you're just playing Pretty Pretty Princess with him like you did all those years ago."

"Can't," Avaric replied regrettably. "We played it when we were seventeen."

Damn, Fiyero thought, jewelry and the white tights? Maybe we switched bodies because of some weird gay urge I'm repressing. What if I am gay? No, wait. I can't be gay. I'm not happy.

"I'm sorry," Avaric said after an awkward silence. "I didn't mean to bring him up."

"Neither did I," Fiyero admitted. "I was just thinking how I wished you could have been friends."

Avaric didn't seem to know what to say to that. Granted, Fiyero didn't even know what to think about that. It was still his mission to absolutely horrify Avaric for going after his girl, after all. And it wasn't like Avaric was completely clean either. He'd gotten drunk at Fiyero's parties, which had meant Fiyero had to be the designated driver to his own taxi driver while Avaric lay in the backseat making interesting noises. And not all of them were vomiting. Hell, he'd ever stolen the purple earrings from the Pretty Pretty Princess board! Suddenly, Fiyero wasn't feeling so sympathetic towards his date. Who was Avaric to judge Fiyero in front of Elphaba (even if it wasn't really Elphaba) like that when he was really describing himself?

Avaric finally broke the silence. "We could dance."

"No, there was a reason you were cut out of the musical."

"Come on, I know all the lyrics," Avaric smirked. Clearing his throat, he began to sing in that flawless voice that everyone around Shiz seemed to have, "Dancing in tights, minding the hair, let's take off your fair dress, snuggle all night…"

"Hey! That's my song!"

"I know. I dedicated it to you." He opened his mouth to continue massacring Fiyero's musical mastepiece.

"You know what, let's dance," Fiyero said quickly, dashing onto the dance floor, which earned him several disbelieving glances. "Wow, these strobe lights make me look really green, don't they?"

Seeming to accept this excuse, they turned away and resumed their dancing through life. Fiyero joined in with a few of his signature moves. (Unfortunately, the Michael Jackson appeared to be under-appreciated.)

As he danced his way into losing Avaric in the crowd, a woman in rubber eyed him appreciatively. He shot her a thankful smile, and with a seductive grin, she stepped closer, nearly grinding her body against his…

"Elphaba!" Avaric shouted, grabbing his hand. The woman glowered and stuck out her tongue at him. Fiyero backed away from both of their angry glares. "What in Ozma's name are you doing?"

"She liked my dancing!" he shouted over the blaring music- what was this stuff, Wizomania?

"What?"

"She's a lesbian!"

"I can't hear you! The music's too loud!"

"THERE WILL ALWAYS BE WOMEN IN RUBBER FLIRTING WITH ME!" Fiyero screamed, running away once more.

Avaric stared at the blank spot where he'd disappeared, having no clue what his date had said. "Okay!" He figured she was getting more punch. 'Cause who'd want to leave Cyberland anyway?

xXx

Somebody save me, Elphaba prayed as Glinda squeezed her hand and rambled on about Fashionozta's latest survey on kissing techniques.

And somebody did. "Dance!" Fiyero blurted, pulling her away from Glinda. Elphaba didn't run with him, but she didn't pull away either. She desperately wanted to keep their cover and make Glinda's dream come true, but she also wanted to feel what it was to dance with Fiyero, to know whether she'd dreamed about it or not. Noticing her hesitation, Fiyero paused, addressing Glinda. "Since I've been tutoring him in school, the least he can do is tutor me in a dance."

Glinda nodded and waved them on, intent on picking the dirt from her nails, if only so no one could see the sadness in her eyes.

"What are you doing?" Elphaba hissed as the blaring music changed to a waltz.

"Is that a trick question?" Fiyero countered.

"I'd tell you to man up, but that does seem to be our problem, doesn't it?" Elphaba grit.

Fiyero grinned charmingly. "Admit it. You like the feel of my hand in yours."

"Except for the fact where it's my hand!" Elphaba protested.

"Oh, yeah?" Fiyero countered. "I don't suppose you've realized where your hand's wandered…"

Her eyes flashed wide open, suddenly alert. In one fluid motion, she reached forward, curled her fingers in a fist, and punched him.

Fruit-punched him, that is, having grabbed the pitcher of punch and dumped it over his head.

Everyone was staring at them now, or more appropriately at a soaked Fiyero, fruit punch seeping down his face. Maybe some of those drips were even tears.

"I guess the rumors are true about you and water," he grit, licking the punch from his lips. "I'm going to go melt now." Melt down, that is, she thought as he ran off. Avaric grabbed him, but he squirmed out of Avaric's grip and shoved him away, scrambling for the door. Furious, Avaric focused his fiery glare on her, grabbing her by the collar and pointing outside, where they could hear themselves above the music even if they themselves would be heard by the busybodies who eavesdropped.

It doesn't matter, she thought as she followed Avaric. She'd gotten the answer to her question.

And a whole lot more questions. Ones that would be asked to her.

xXx

Fiyero Tiggular had just committed murder.

His victim: Elphaba's roses.

Or, at least, that had been the intention. Instead, the rose's thorns had ripped across his palms as he strangled the stems, and he'd ended up cursing in pain, the roses merely looking redder with his blood. No wonder Boq was terrified of breaking up with Nessa, if this was what roses did to a person.

Well, there were certain things a person could do to a rose too. Sighing, he plucked the petals off the rose, starting gently before surrendering to a criminal sense of urgency.

She loves me, she loves me not, she loves me, she loves me not, she…

Damn. He hated true or false tests until now.

Because the final petal, the one that would have represented her love, had been cleaved in two, more of a scrap than a real petal. Maybe it was soft, but it was fragile too. And broken.

Served him right for trying to find his heart.


Sorry everyone, it appears that Elphaba beat the livelihood out of Fiyero again. (Appears?) More is explained next chapter. I wish we could have seen a little more of Nessa, but her being the invisible girl is kinda the point, plus this is a Fiyero T. and Elphaba T. story. Although I appreciate reviews about any character at all. Especially since I'll be on vacation, and then school starts, so this will probably be the last chapter for a while.