"Ohhhh! So cold." Roxas could see his breath puffing in the air. Axel laughed and Roxas smiled, looking up into his husband's face as a warm arm slid around him. Jenni laughed and cuddled up to Axel on the other side. He put his other arm around her as they watched the skating match. The Glacial River had frozen solid for the winter and had been turned into a vast playground.
"It's not that bad. It could be windy." Roxas made a face and Axel thought his Queen was more beautiful than ever, his cheeks rosy with the cold and his face framed by glorious fox fur. Jenni looked good too, happy and glowing with her first pregnancy.
It had been almost a half a year since Sora had left and things were going very well. He'd been married to Jenni in a quiet ceremony two months ago and to everyone's surprise, she'd conceived almost immediately. The King was beside himself with pleasure at the thought of a grandchild and Roxas was looking forward to it too. His great sadness at living as a woman had always been the fact that he couldn't have children. He loved them very much and helping to raise Jenni and Axel's babies would be almost as good as having children himself.
"I love you both." Roxas murmured softly and looked up into Axel's warm green eyes. The redhead smiled down at him and Jenni laughed.
"I love you both too." She said fondly, hugging Axel. She and Roxas had gradually become closer although it fortunately hadn't turned into anything beyond friends. Roxas wasn't attracted to women that way and if Jenni had gotten that fond of him, things could have gotten awkward.
"I love you both more." Axel said with a grin and Roxas playfully punched him in the shoulder.
"Axel! It's not a competition – mrph!" Axel silenced Roxas with a kiss, warm and loving. Then he smiled and did the same to Jenni, who giggled in pleasure.
"If showing love were a competition, though, we'd be much better off wouldn't we?" Axel said and Roxas could only agree. The world would be a lovely place if everyone competed in showing love. "Want to try the skates again?" Roxas winced at that.
"Do I have to?" Skating was completely unknown in sunny Reyerton and his first attempt had not been a success. He'd ended up in a snowdrift. Axel shrugged then grinned.
"You don't HAVE to. But it would be fun. Jenni and I will help you." With one of them on either side they'd be able to keep Roxas up. Roxas sighed but nodded. Xion was skating freely across the ice. Although… Roxas paused as he was lacing up his skates on a bench beside the ice.
"Axel? Who is that Xion's skating with?" The huge man seemed very familiar to him. Axel glanced up and smiled.
"That's Lexaeus. Remember? The fellow who helped save us by the spring." Roxas' eyes widened. Now that Axel mentioned it he definitely remembered. How had he forgotten? But then, it had been a traumatic time. "They've been stepping out together on her nights off." That surprised Roxas even more. He knew Xion had found a new beau, but he hadn't known it was someone he'd met.
"Well, I hope they do well together." They were certainly a strange couple. Xion was tiny compared to the massive Lexaeus. But Roxas thought their personalities might complement each other. Axel stood, stamping his skates into place and Roxas hastily finished tying his.
It took a while for him to figure out the skates, but after a great deal of help Roxas managed to move freely. It was great fun although it quickly tired his ankles and they finally retired to a bench to have some hot cider.
"Oh look!" Jenni tugged on Axel's arm and he obediently looked. "They're making caramel lace! Can we get some?" Roxas looked over, curious and saw that boards were being put down and snow piled on top in an irregular mound. Then molten caramel was poured onto the snow and cooled into odd, lacy patterns. Children seemed to love it.
"Of course." Soon they all had a bit of the caramel lace and Roxas giggled as he sucked on his. It was a lot of fun, crunching up and sucking on the delicate lace. They watched another skating competition, this one a game involving sticks, nets and a puck. Roxas was very vague on the rules and it looked more than a little violent. Lexaeus was in it and proved to be a very good player indeed.
They finally went home and Roxas fell asleep beside Axel, utterly content. Jenni was tucked against his other side but Roxas didn't mind. The Royal bed was big enough for three and they were all too tired for anything but sleep. He and Jenni had learned how to share Axel's attentions, and sometimes they even slept with him together. Those were very good nights. It helped Axel too, since he wasn't as strongly attracted to women.
They were all awoken bright and early by a far too chipper Xion. She leapt onto the bed with a fine disregard for rank and propriety and grinned at them as Axel swore and Jenni made a small, sleepy protest. Roxas rubbed her eyes then blinked. Xion was wearing a good shirt but… only tiny, yellow underpants.
"Xion, have you lost your mind?" Axel asked and Xion grinned.
"Not at all." She said, disgustingly cheerful at the early hour. "I just had an idea and had to do it. Check it out!" She turned around and lowered her panties so they could see her bottom. All three of them stared, stunned by the sight of a bright yellow happy face tattoed onto Xion's rear.
"Xion… what IS that?" Roxas found his voice, bewildered. Xion pulled up her panties and turned around with a grin.
"It's a happy ending!" The servants outside were a bit confused by all the laughter from the Prince's bedchambers, but no one questioned it.
It was good to have the Royal Family so happy.
Eventually, Jenni would give birth and to everyone's delight it would be to twins, a boy and a girl. Roxas doted on the children like they were his own. They would grow up to be beautiful and bright and capable heirs to the throne.
Aarin was a thorn in their sides, raiding every spring and Ashara launched counterraids just as frequently. But then the King of Aarin, a canny and vicious old man died, leaving his Kingdom to his son. Fenric the Stupid quickly proved to be the most inept ruler Aarin had ever been saddled with. He spurned his engagement to a Sloodi princess he didn't care for, undoing all his father's careful diplomatic work. The Sloodi were mortally offended by the graceless refusal and made a surreptitious alliance with Ashara. The two pronged attack quickly brought the old, proud nation to its knees and Roxas got to ride to war beside Axel. They were both wounded in battle but survived. Kohla, astonishingly, proved to have a genius for war and led her battalion to victory again and again. Riku, too, proved his ability in combat and also his skills with diplomacy. With Aarin crushed, Axel and Cristopher split the country with Sloodi. The new Southern province was renamed Aarsha and while it would eventually become its own country, that wouldn't happen for many, many generations in the future.
After the war was finished, Sloodi offered Axel a Princess to be his third wife and to solidify the treaties between them. Axel accepted and, ironically, the woman who should have married Fenric became his third wife. She was a tiny and beautifully dark woman with agile hands and a wicked sense of humor. She also tried to become Axel's favorite at first but met with a united opposition in Jenni and Roxas. It took a bit of time but they finally settled into a comfortable relationship and soon there was a third child to join the first two. In all, Axel would have five children by his two wives and the Royal family would not want for heirs for some time.
At the age of sixty, King Cristopher stepped down and Axel was finally crowned king. He would reign until his untimely death at the age of fifty-two in a hunting accident. Roxas would follow him soon thereafter, unable to live without the love of his life. The children would miss them very much but the Kingdom would pass on into capable hands.
And until my next story…