Our heroine turned to our antihero. "Can we make this fast, Axel? I think I need a bit more healing than just a potion."

"Excuse me," Axel said, a bit nettled. "That's all I had to work with, missy. And, might I remind you, I did save your life. Is this all the thanks I get?"

Shoshanah opened her mouth to make a smart remark, but thought better and closed it again. Unbeknownst to her, a smile began creeping onto her face.

"Don't smirk at me like that. See if I ever save your life again."

"All right!" She laughed. "What do you want?"

Abruptly, Axel was serious. "I want you to wait for me."

"Wait for you?" Shoshanah repeated, still chuckling a little. "For what?"

"Oh, come on, Sparky. If we're planning on any sort of…relationship, one of us can't be missing one of their vital organs. Namely, a heart."

Shoshanah clasped her hands behind her back, and rocked back and forth. "So…you want me to wait like a good little girl while you go off and find your heart? Is that it, Axel?"

Axel crossed his arms. "Yep. That sounds about right."

Shoshanah nodded. She was still smiling, but it was no longer a very pleasant smile. It was more of an evil smirk. "Uh-huh. And how, my fine Nobody, do you think we can have any sort of relationship if you insist on treating me like a little girl?"

"Oh, boy," Axel groaned.

Shoshanah pretended she hadn't heard that. "Listen, buddy," she said, pointing her finger at his chest in a very threatening manner. "Neither of us knows how long it's gonna take you to get a heart again, and I'm not sitting around on my ass until I'm an old lady for us to have any 'relationship.' Got it memorized?"

"Don't use my catchphrase against me," Axel protested.

She breathed in deeply through her mouth. When she had calmed down a bit, she continued. "That's not really the point, you know. The point is I'm not waiting for you. I'm going with you, and that's the end of it."

Axel began to smile. This was starting to get entertaining.

Shoshanah caught the tiny smile, and deepened her glare. "Am I coming with you, or not?" She demanded.

He shrugged. "Sure. Maybe I'll get it faster with two of us looking."

Shoshanah nodded, businesslike. "Good. Then let's go home." She turned on heel, and began to march through the dark corridor Zexion had left opened, but Axel grabbed her wrist. When Shoshanah began to protest, he swept her into an embrace, and kissed her fully on the mouth.

After what seemed like hours, he broke off. Shoshanah wobbled, and probably would've fallen if he hadn't been holding her up. Pulling back, he eyed her in concern. "You okay, Sparky?"

She managed to choke out, "I think my heart just stopped."
He flashed her a crooked grin. "One of the advantages of being a Nobody. Won't be one for long, though, right?" He winked, and leaned forward. In her ear, he whispered, "Thanks, Sparky." And with that, he began to leave.

Suddenly, Shoshanah wanted to tell him something. "Axel!"

He spun on heel, his cloak fanning out around him. "Ye-ah?"

It was probably not a very good time to tell him, but since she had started, Shoshanah was determined to continue. "I just…wanted to tell you…I kinda…I love you…."

Axel shrugged. "I know."

Any warm, fuzzy feelings she had been feeling for the man in front of her instantly flooded out her body. Probably through her open mouth. "Excuse me?"

"I may not have emotions, Sparky, but I can figure out other people's. And you're not particularly good at hiding yours." He raised his hand in a mock salute. "Got it memorized?" And then he warped away.

Shoshanah stood in shock for a few more moments. Her bad leg threatened to give away, and her other leg didn't appear to be faring much better. Her chest ached, but it didn't seem to be from the wound Xemnas had given her.

With a jolt, she remembered the corridor wouldn't stay open for much longer. Hurriedly, she ran in, right before it disappeared.

She found herself in the ruined mansion at Twilight Town, where there appeared to be a party in full swing. Demyx, who probably did the least of anyone, seemed to be enjoying it the most, playing his sitar with much enthusiasm. Naminé, wherever she had come from, watched him as though mesmerized. Sora was literally bouncing off the walls from too much sugar, as Donald zoomed around the room trying to catch him. Zexion ate something he had made, while watching the whole scene with a mildly entertained expression. Goofy sat in a corner, chuckling to himself, as Wally and the cats danced. Riku and Axel seemed to be arguing.

Axel caught Shoshanah's eye, and winked again. Shoshanah grinned and blushed, and went to help herself to a hyper-potion and some food.


And...that's it! Thanks to everyone who stuck by and read all this, and even more thanks to everyone who reviewed!