Title: Chibi Things.
Genre: Romance. Humour. Fluff.
Characters: Roll, Rock, Blues, the Chibis, Hikari Netto, Ijiuin Enzan.
Rating: PG-13/Soft R.
Disclaimer: , its characters, places and themes belong to Capcom, Shogakukan, ShoPro, TV Tokio, etc. No copyright infringement is intended.
Warnings: Unbeated. Shounen-ai. Banter.
A/N: Started as a vignette, then got a life of it own. 'nuff said.
Unrelated to my other fics; it's the usual, get-together one shot were Rock and Blues are just "colleagues" at the beginning of the fic, and more than that later on. *grins*
Summary: Enzan and Netto screwed up, big time. And now it's Roll who has to take care of things. Chibi things.
Chibi: Japanese for "small", "mini".
* * * * *
If asked, Roll would've assured that she loved children.
Actually, she had been asked, and she'd answered as above, which meant she could blame her current predicament on no one but herself. Then again, when Netto had asked her in a sly, chirpy voice if she liked kids, she had no idea it would lead to… this.
And while babysitting wasn't a bad occupation per se (she did love children, as claimed above), her current charges were… of the less than ordinary kind.
Or so she reflected, grimly, as she tried to fish the blue-clad child from where he'd gone huddling underneath a bulking piece of machinery (of all things!).
"I mean it! Come out from under there! NOW!" She wasn't usually this snappish, but the child had been leading her on chase for an hour straight, and it was starting to grate on her nerves. "Come! Out!"
"Nooo~oooohhhh!" came the whine mixed shriek mixed awful-lament-of-the-kicked-puppy from the dark alcove.
If she squinted, Roll could make out a pair of green eyes, huge and glistening, shining in the darkness (which was kinda unsettling, considering that nothing else could be seen of the child apart from those glowing lanterns). She made a swipe for the eyes, issuing a frustrated sound when she missed.
"Of all the…" she muttered something through her teeth, then tried counting up to ten in her head. When it did nothing for her, she reached twenty and then thirty.
"Listen," she said at length. "I know this is a big computer and has a Battle Arena, but you can't use it. There's no Operator to supervise you… and you're just a child!"
"I wanna seeeeeeeeeeeeeeee it!"
"We saw it already! From a distance! Now come out and we'll… we'll… have a snack!" the proverbial bulb appeared above her head. "Aren't you hungry? Thirsty?"
"I wanna seeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee it!"
"Cookies. What about cookies?"
"I wanna seeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee it!"
"Then chocolate? Don't you like chocolate? Children love chocolate!"
"I wanna seeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee---"
Groaning, Roll sat back on her haunches, allowing herself a moment to bemoan her bad luck before going to her feet.
There was pause as her blue-clad charge took a breath. In the blissful silence, a sombre, if childlike voice hearkened to her.
Roll glanced down. At about the level of her knees, her other charge stood with his head tilted backwards and his shoulders squared.
She smiled despite herself. Such a miniature knight, he was. Instead than looking odd, the prideful stance and the straight face he wore conjured to make his chubby little self adorable beyond belief.
"Yes, Blues?" she asked, regaining all of her usual sweetness. She wasn't clear on what had happened to Blues and Rock to turn them into kids, but one thing she knew: they were cute as buttons!
"Miss Woll, if we pwomise not to play fight, can we go see the Battle Awena?" Chibi-Blues coaxed, straight-faced like a poker player.
Roll chewed on her bottom lip.
"I… I'm not sure, Blues. Battles are adults stuff. Even if you don't fight, you could get hurt."
"I will make suwe that Wock doesn't touch a thing. Pwease, Miss Woll? He weally wants to go see it."
He might not remember anything about his real self, but he still put Rock's needs above everything else, didn't he?
Roll tittered in delight, and bent over to pat Chibi-Blues's helmet.
"Always the shining knight, even at this tender age, mh?" She shook her head. "You're going to break so many hearts, young man," she chided playfully.
Straightening, she glanced over her shoulder at Chibi-Rock, who had emerged from underneath the machine and sat with his knees up, pouting and glowering and pretending to cry, all at once, being unable to decide what would appeal to Roll the most.
"All right you rascal," she conceded, beckoning him closer with her hand, which he scrambled to take. "We'll go into the Battle Arena. But you can't touch anything!"
She had to holler the last part, because Chibi-Rock had already skipped off.
"And don't come any close to the Internet Link! It's dangerous! I mean it!" She watched Chibi-Rock skid to a sudden halt and make a dive for said link, as though her words had summoned the irresistible urge to do the exact opposite of what she'd said.
"No! Not that way! Rock!" she sprinted forth, barely aware of the streak of red that was Chibi-Blues rushing under her stretched arm and past her. "Stop! Stop! Oh, Netto's gonna delete me… there… there are monsters on the other side, Rock!" she said as a last resort. "There are ghosts!"
Chibi-Rock yelped. Arms flailing, he pressed his heels on the floor, eyes squeezed shut as he tried to stop his momentum. He slid forward for another few inches, then tripped on his own two feet and fell head-first, rolling until he was an hairsbreadth's away from the link.
Roll gasped and hurried close, but when she arrived, Chibi-Blues was already helping the other child to his feet, checking him over for damage with gentle, careful touches. Chibi-Rock made himself small against Chibi-Blues's chest, and turned towards Roll with eyes that were huge and fearful.
Roll opened her mouth, paused, then got a wicked gleam in her eyes.
"That's right Rock," she uttered sweetly. "Navi-eating ghosts, to be precise. Why, do you want to meet them?" She made as though to reach for the link, watching in amusement as Chibi-Rock gasped, and dove behind Chibi-Blues for cover.
Chibi-Blues glanced over his shoulder at the quivering bundle clinging to his hair. He looked as cold and stoic as ever, but for all his poise he made nothing to disengage Chibi-Rock, even when Roll started to gently coax him out of his hiding place.
A whole lot of squirming, mumbling, trembling and pouting later, Chibi-Rock shyly peeked from behind Chibi-Blues's back.
"Ghosts aw scawy!"
"Yes, Rock: they're scawy-err… scary. That's why I want you children to stay away from that link. Do you understand now?"
Chibi-Rock nodded meekly, small fists curling tighter around the strands of Chibi-Blues's hair, and glanced worriedly at the link.
"But what if the scawy ghosts get in heew and twy to eat Wock?"
Roll had to bite down hard on her lip to keep from laughing. Definitely the cutest things ever, these two.
After regaining a measure of composure, she opened her mouth to reassure the child that no evil would befell him, but just then Chibi-Blues managed to turn inside Chibi-Rock's hold, and put his hands on his shoulders.
"Don't wowwy, Wockman. I will pwotect you," he vowed, causing Chibi-Rock to blush prettily.
"Thank you, Bwues." Giggling, Chibi-Rock snuggled against Chibi-Blues, rubbing his head under the other child's chin like a kitten. Roll was pushed one step closer to melting point.
"Awww! If only your Operators could see you now!" she gushed, transfixed.
Chibi-Rock stopped making purring noises and turned towards her, cheek firmly pressed against Chibi-Blues's own. Their diminutive size alone justified a comparison with toys. But if toys they were, then Chibi-Blues was one of those resin figurines, stoic and still as he was; while Chibi-Rock was one of those cuddly, long-limbed plushies that had somehow got entwined with the figurine inside the toys box and refused to budge, no matter how strong you tugged.
"What's an Opwewatow?"
"Operator, Rock. It's…" Roll took a moment to consider. "Well, do you remember those boys you saw on that huuuuuuge screen above when you first woke up?"
Chibi-Rock's head bobbed up and down, and the motion caused his cheek to slide against an immovable Blues's.
"Well, those were your Operators: Netto-kun and Enzan-san," explained Roll. "They're the ones who take care of you, make sure no virus can hurt you, and keep away the bugs from your systems."
And failing miserably, if their current forms were any indication.
"Oh." Pause. "They're our mommy and daddy?" And you could almost see the waggling tail that accompanied the question.
Roll burst out laughing.
"Wha--? No! Netto-kun and Enzan-san are just… well, Netto-kun and Enzan-san!" She doubted the two would take kindly to being considered a married couple. Besides, they'd never be able to decide on who was the mommy.
"Your Operators," she repeated softly.
Chibi-Rock pursed his lips in thought; then he gave a nod, as if to say that he approved of having an Operator.
"When does Wock and Bwues get to meet theiw Opwewatows?"
Roll patted the child gently on the head.
"Operators, Rock." She sighed. "They promised they'd be back with the cure by tonight, and as cute as you two look like this, I can't wait to see you restored to normal."
Blank faces greeted her words – well, Chibi-Blues's face was blank, which was no news. Chibi-Rock's face was actually scrunched up in an adorable frown.
"Long story," Roll assured, reaching out to poke Chibi-Rock's nose. "But hopefully, your Operators will be here in a few hours, and then we can all go back to our PETs."
Chibi-Rock giggled and cocked his head to one side, rubbing his nose.
"PETs? What's PETs?"
Roll smiled at his confusion.
"A PET is where you live, Rock. A small, portable device that your Operator carries with him whenever he goes. It's your home."
He glanced up at Chibi-Blues, then back at her, brightly.
"Blues has his own PET, of course. It belongs to Enzan-sun, while yours belongs to Netto-kun."
Chibi-Rock's eyes grew huge, in a face that looked like a deer's cornered in the headlights.
"Bwues doesn't weev in the same PET as Wock?"
That made Roll giggle.
"Of course not! He lives in his own, which is red like his suit, while yours is…"
She was interrupted by a shriek. Startled out of her mirth, it took Roll a second or two to identify the source of the heartbreaking noise; and when she did, the heartbreak factor rose exponentially.
Chibi-Rock had his mouth wide around a tearful wail; his little fists were pressed to his eyes, and hot, fat tears gushed from underneath, rolling down his flushed cheeks.
"Oh, my! Rock, please!" Roll tried to pull the distraught child to herself, but he wouldn't let her, worming away and deeper into Chibi-Blues's embrace, wailing and shaking like a wind-wracked leaf.
Chibi-Blues scowled briefly at Roll (he might have been a child, and he wore a visor to boot, but she recognized a scowl, when she was subjected to one), then put his arms gently around the other child. He began to issue hushing noises, rubbing circles on Chibi-Rock's heaving back.
After a while of this Chibi-Rock sniffled, going still, and looked up at Chibi-Blues. His cheeks were flushed and sticky with tears, his nose was scrunched up and his eyebrows knitted in pain.
"Wock doesn't want an Opwewatow to take him 'way from Bwues," he explained, projecting his bottom lip out in a pout.
Chibi-Blues patted him on the crown of his helmet, looking the part of the wise (if diminutive) man.
"Even if we weev in different PETs, we can still pway togethew, Wock."
Chibi-Rock sniffled, wiping his cheeks.
Chibi-Rock's arms immediately went around Chibi-Blues, snuggling.
"I nevew-evew want you to leev me, Bwues."
Roll was totally enthralled by the cute by now. So much so, that she was literally mourning the promise she'd made to Enzan not to take pictures of his Navi in his current state.
"Aww, children. That's so sweet of you. I wish that could happen for real." She smiled a little ruefully, well aware of the ongoing rivalry that bonded the adult Rock and Blues as much as it divided them. They'd probably resume their routine of keeping each other at an arm's length as soon as they were restored to normal, acting ashamed of the accident, but completely professional.
"…damn", was the exact thought of Roll's resident inner fangirl.
Chibi-Rock stepped out of Chibi-Blues's arms.
"Of couwse it will happen!" he claimed enthusiastically. "Bwues is my bestest fwiend in the wholest wowd, and we'll be togethew fowevew, won't we Bwues?"
Chibi-Blues turned to regard the she-Navi in all seriousness.
"I'm going to mawwy Wockman once he's old enough," he confirmed, with the air of someone who knew what he was talking about.
Inner yaoi fangirl going into hysterics, Roll was an inch away from catching both children in the mother of all bear hugs, when Chibi-Rock proved to possess some sort of fangirlish instinct himself.
Before she knew it, the little Blue Bomber had propelled himself into Chibi-Blues's arms with his customary cry of "Oh, Bwues!!", sending the both of them barrelling to the floor.
The cute factor of the scene (which was pretty high on its own already) skyrocketed when, in his quest to plant wet, sloppy kisses all over his playmate's face like an overjoyed puppy, Rock managed to press their lips together, making both blush like cherries.
Of course, a kiss among children is not much of anything, least of all something to get embarrassed over. But as Murphy's Law would have it, Netto and Enzan chose that exact moment to inject the cure into their Navis and eradicate the bug, thus restoring them to their original appearance.
One atop the other.
On the floor.
It's time for an awkward moment or two, I guess.
Gingerly, Rockman pulled himself away, and looked down with wide, wondering eyes at the Navi whose hips he was currently straddling. For his part, Blues looked like he wanted nothing more than dash away from the physical contact… but to dash to safety he'd have to unseat Rockman first, and unseating Rockman would, well, allow even more physical contact between them, which was a total no-no at the moment.
And so he stayed frozen, and Rockman stayed frozen, and the silence seemed to swell and engulf them like a physical thing.
In the shocked stillness that followed, Rockman thought he heard Roll squeal in fangirlish delight, followed by something that sounded suspiciously like a camera snapping a picture. After that Netto's confused voice was heard (Ehy! Ehy! I heard the squee noise! What happened?!). He asked if the cure had worked, and if so, why weren't Rockman and Blues on the screen? Were they all right? Had something gone wrong?
Rockman answered distractedly that all was a-ok, so that Netto wouldn't worry. But he didn't dare glance away from Blues for even a second. What was visible of the red Navi's face was pale, and drawn with a degree of shock. Rockman could guess that Blues's eyes were wide under his visor, the same as his own. And his breathing was a bit irregular, not speedy, but deep and uneven like after a particularly proving battle. Whereas his mouth…
Watching Blues's mouth sent a wave of self-conscious thrills down Rockman's spine. Reaching up, he put the pad of two fingers to his lips, not once losing that wide-eyed, wondering look on his face.
Applying pressure to the same place where Blues's own mouth had been a moment before seemed to reawaken the sensation, and Rockman sucked in a breath, tensing, eyes going huge, looking for all the world as if he was realizing just then what had transpired before.
Underneath him, Blues seemed to visibly steel himself, drawing a long breath and holding it in, like he expected Rockman to either attack or hurt him, but did not want to defend himself.
They were at a turning point.
The kiss had lasted a split moment after their change, their lips pressing together in a way that had nothing of the childish. And now, Rockman's reaction to the intimate contact would decide the course of their relationship.
Would he be angry?
Would he take it with humour?
Or rather ignore the whole accident as though it'd never happened?
Blues had no idea, but whatever Rockman did, either they would remain friends, or they wouldn't.
It was all in Rock's hands.
Somewhere around them, Netto kept talking, then Enzan did, and then Roll said something that might or might have not assuaged the boys, but suddenly all noise ceased, and they were alone.
A small eternity passed before Rockman blinked himself out of his stupor. Something in his face told Blues that something really… really… Rockman (this is to say, foolish and impulsive and rather damaging to his dignity) was about to happen.
He was proven right not a second later.
Not abandoning his perch, Rockman tightened his thighs around Blues's hips, effectively trapping him. Slowly, he leaned down until he could put his elbows on Blues's chest, balancing his chin onto his own curled hands.
"…marry me, uh?" he quoted, wiggling his eyebrows.
Any lesser Navi would've succumbed to the madcap delight sported onto Rockman's face and made a dash for cover; but Blues managed to hold his wits about himself just fine. Besides, the run away option was kinda off limits to him, given his current status as Rockman's seat. Mattress. Rocking horse? Heck, whatever.
"…I can't be held responsible for what I said under the effects of a bug," said Blues.
At last, it was clear by now what his fate would be: torment. But damned if he wouldn't go down with a fight!
Rockman shook his head down at Blues, and the mirth shining onto his face was enough to make Blues twitch.
Again, we might add.
"Uh-uh. You're not getting out of this relationship that easily, mister."
That did throw Blues off guard, however briefly.
"What relationship?" he deadpanned.
With one finger, Rockman began to trace lazy patterns across Blues's chest, fiddling with his Navi crest, going up until he could brush the line of his collarbone, and then gliding back to the starting point.
"You kissed me," Rockman explained, delighted in the way Blues twitched under his ministrations.
"You did," Blues shot back, in a mixture of defensive and accusing that came out of his mouth whenever Rockman was a bit too Rockman for his tastes.
Rockman grinned, poked Blues on the chest.
"And you proposed to me, too!"
"That hardly counts as a relationship."
"Exactly," Rockman agreed, in a tone of voice that implied he was glad that Blues was seeing things his way. "A kiss and a promise are a way off from what one would call a 'relationship'." Beat. Grin. Flutter of lashes. "That's why you owe me the damnest most romantic courtship you can think of before we tie the knot, Blues-love."
Taking advantage of the millisecond it took Blues to recover from his initial reaction to the nickname (a severe case of undignified spluttering), Rockman leaned all the way down, tangled his legs with Blues's own, circled his neck with his arms and began to play with the luxurious silvery locks that – he could admit it now – he'd obsessed over ever since meeting Blues the first time.
They were laying flush against each other now; and it was… nice, Blues reflected. Not the sort of development he'd been expecting, but very nice indeed. It got even better when Rockman guided Blues's arms around his waist, checking that they were pulled as tight as they could go before going back to combing the silvery hair in a sort of drunken delight.
Blues gave the small waist he held a tentative squeeze, and was rewarded with some nuzzling and a purr.
"…courtship?" he asked carefully, as if he thought he was walking into a trap, and something might blow in his face at any moment.
"Courtship," Rockman assured. "You know, that thing that usually comes before engagement? Considering that we are engaged, we really ought to take a step back and do things properly."
"As in 'to marry', Blues." Rockman found the baffled routine extremely endearing; but not enough to stop teasing Blues. "Or did you forget?" He wiggled his fingers before Blues's face, as though to show off an inexistent ring. He then took a careful look at said fingers, pouted, and proceeded to ask Blues to remedy to the ring-less state of his hand.
"You want me to… woo you?"
"To… take you out on a date?" Said like it was a vile thing.
"It's 'dates', Blues. Dates. Plural. You aren't getting off with a single night out."
"Night… out?" More and more bafflement on Blues's part.
Rock tilted his head to side, eyes widening into an innocent (but extremely teasing) look.
"Isn't that was couples do? Spend time together?"
"…we're a couple?"
"Now we're on the same wave-length," Rockman patted Blues's chest, grinning like a Cheshire cat.
"You mean…" Blues began, sounding unsure of his own voice. Rockman had the feeling he'd better spell it out, if he wanted to be taken seriously.
"That I accept your proposal, of course. You silly man. Why else would I've kissed you?"
"And don't get cheeky and say that's because you're handsome; not that you aren't, but that's not the reason I'm willing to spend the rest of my life with you."
Rock felt Blues relax marginally, and mentally filed that reaction away as The Most Rewarding Feat He'd Ever Accomplished. He also took advantage of it to snuggle closer.
"You have one Hell of a lot to make up for, though," he said, still into teasing mood. "Really. Proposing right out of the blue like that! Without romancing me one bit beforehand! Tsk."
"Well, you always did call me impulsive."
Blues was bantering back, at last. Which Rockman took as a most delightful sign.
"That you are. Oh, and I want the complete set, just so that you know!" Rockman extended one finger, enunciating. "Movies, dinners, picnics, shopping, candlelight, gifts, letters, late-night phone calls… you can skip the roses, but some battle chips would be appreciated. Oh! And chocolate. Lots of chocolate. I'm rather fond of sweets."
"Don't I know." Squeezing Rockman tighter, closer.
"Right. So you'd better remember to shower me in sweets." Beat. "Or you could bathe me in chocolate, and then clean me up. But that's for after the wedding."
"Now who's getting cheeky, I wonder."
Rockman grinned, the dictionary definition of cheeky.
The arms around his waist tightened a little more, and yet the embrace became somehow truer, less stiff, and a lot more tender.
"And what if after the courtship we decide not to get married?" queried Blues.
Rock slapped him on the shoulder.
"As if anyone could say no to a chocolate-covered me."
"But…" Blues paused. Licked his lips. "But you could say no to me."
Rock took a moment to study Blues's face. Despite the visor, the doubt etched onto his face was as clear as it was piercing. Rockman went soft and pliant in his arms, and his grin mellowed into a loving, gentle smile. He cupped Blues's cheek, barely restrained from leaning over and kissing his lips.
"I could never say no to you," he said softly, but with conviction.
Blues regained some colour about the cheeks. His mouth relaxed.
"That's dangerous words, you speak."
Rock shrugged, twirled a lock of silvery hair around his finger.
"I like danger."
"Don't I know." A little exasperated now, but still playful.
Rockman smacked him again, and took the opening to snuggle even closer, defying several laws of physics in the process.
Blues squeezed the purring thing curled against his chest, getting addicted to the feel of him already. If he could capture this moment, he thought, he definitely would.
Rockman's thoughts mirrored Blues's own with eerie perfection. Whatever happened from then on, he wanted to lock that moment in time in a jar and keep it by his pillow, to gaze at it in the years to come, and remember, always remember, the first time Blues had held him. Oh, if only he had…
…a camcorder chip. Then he'd…
A camcorder chip?
"Roll-chan?!" Rockman cried out.
Roll emerged from behind her camera, bubbly with excitement. She had that starry look in her eyes that usually meant the logic part of her personality had been overridden by the fangirl.
"Awmygawdthatwasthemostromanticthingever!" she gushed, clutching her camera.
"…you were here the whole time?!"
"You expected me to miss out on this? Do you know how long I've been cheering you two on?" Her camera went click again. "You were long overdue." Click. "Both of you." Click. Click.
Rock immediately went pink, and endeavoured to hide himself inside Blues's armour, failing rather miserably, but looking way too adorable for his efforts to be criticized. Blues obligingly petted him in a comforting fashion, and his hands coursing up and down Rock's back felt so good, but oh! so! good that Rock can be excused for arching into the touch like a cat, purring something fierce.
Roll snapped another picture or twelve.
"Awww. That's so sweet!" Click. "I wish I had some chocolate handy to give you two." She paused. Grinned. Fluttered her lashes the same way Rock had done before, and somehow managed to look even naughtier that he had. "That would make for one wonderful shot…"
And bing! Rock turned even pinkier, which is not even a word, but fits the situation perfectly; and Blues, well, he might deny it fiercely in the weeks to come, but he also turned a shade or two darker about the cheeks…
This… did so not go the way it was planned. XD;; Ever since I started the vignette with the adorable chibies I knew I wanted it to end with them confessing and getting together as adults. And yet, I honestly have to idea why Rock had to be such a cheeky thing. *flicks his forehead* And I assure you, he was WAY cheekier before I edited this thing. Poor Blues got teased within one inch of his life. *giggles*