Chapter Forty
This is it

I try not to stare directly into it, I mean, I heard that cat shit could cause potential blindness or something along those lines, so I don't want to take any chances but I have to, to figure out where to scoop and to distract myself from my annoying cousin, who hasn't shut up since walking in early this morning. Again I remind myself to look away as I drop the litter into a plastic bag before turning to look at said annoying cousin.

He's been bothering me for about 2 weeks, asking whether or not I had sex with Axel. At school I'm lucky enough to avoid him quite a bit, only running into real problems at lunch when he's in my face for the full 40 minutes. After school, it's more of a gamble. Some nights Sora will actually do homework, or work on a project and others he'll just procrastinate and come bother me. I sigh sadly as I cast a glance at the calendar. It's now spring break and Sora has nothing but free time on his hands. "I don't know why you have to be so tight lipped about this, Roxas," I hear him huff from behind me and I roll my eyes before straightening up and tying the plastic bag. I don't have time for this.

I was going to tell him, I really meant to, but I forgot. I honestly did. What with catching up in school and Axel living at home with me, it really slipped my mind to call him and be like 'Yeah hey, we did it. I lost my virginity'. Besides, not only does that sound really weird and make me feel terribly awkward, I really did forget. Then I got annoyed by him, because he wouldn't drop it and he got even more insistent, so now I'm just not saying anything because he doesn't deserve to know. He made it even worse when he involved Naminé and Olette. Those girls are almost as annoying as Sora and all three of them combined have me contemplating never going back to school again. The way I see it is, it's either that or admit to all of them that the 'virgin' of the group is no more. God knows how they're all going to squeal and giggle and be obnoxious...and the questions...the endless flow of questions.

Personally, I'd rather drop out and never have to listen to them but that's crazy talk. Sora is my cousin, and I'm sure Naminé and Olette would march right over to my house if they caught wind of me avoiding them. Not to mention my parents would flip shit, and drag me back to school as soon as they'd find out. There's really no way of dodging their annoyingness, and part of me wonders why the hell I went and picked such weird friends. Well, in my defense, Naminé and Olette seemed normal at first and Hayner and Pence aren't too bad.

That being said, I guess I'll just have to take it like a man, or at least until I eventually cave in and tell them. "Get out of my way, or I'll beat you with cat shit and fake sand," Sora side steps me when I walk by, the bag swinging side to side as I march through the kitchen, eyes set on the side door.

I hate cleaning out Oblivion's litter box, and according to Axel, he hates it just as much but the house is in desperate need of a spring cleaning, and my parents are coming home tomorrow. Which means the entire family is soon going to be packed into my house. When Sora told me this, I was so pissed. The reunion was supposed to take place at Sora's house, not here. After all, Aunt Betty is the one setting this whole thing up, but apparently, she believes my parents will be more comfortable at home. What the shit? They've been on vacation this entire time, they don't need to relax anymore.

I toss the soiled litter into the garbage behind the house and stay hanging out the door for a few minutes. The snow has finally started to melt away and the weather is really getting nice quickly. I wonder where the smooth transition between seasons went but realize I don't really care. As long as winter is gone, and with it the cold, it could be summer tomorrow and I wouldn't question a thing. Plus, Spring gives me the sensation of a new start or at least the start of something great. My relationship with Axel is coming along nicely, and everything else seems to be going quite smoothly as well, though I haven't officially asked him out per se. Not to mention my hair is growing back marvelously, and for that I can thank my father and his weird hair genes.

I get back inside, and Sora is staring at me, waiting for me to tell him something. He doesn't keep asking, instead he just trails around behind me as I move about the house. I ignore him as best as I can, plopping onto the sofa and turning on the TV, not so much as glancing at him and this goes on for a full 20 minutes. I know I should be cleaning, and it would be a nice help but I also know Axel can do it on his own. Besides, he'll probably clean the house much faster without me trailing behind, destroying what he's cleaned.

I decide to look at Sora from the corner of my eye and watch as he texts someone and I have to wonder just who he's been messaging all morning, before he looks and catches me staring. "I'm going to just march up there and ask him myself," Sora grins and I roll my eyes, not understanding why he needs to know this information so badly.

"Can't you just drop it? Why do you care so much?" I really want to know, so it's my turn to stare very steadily at him. My cousin looks down at his phone quickly, before looking back up and shaking his head, like he's upset that I just don't get it naturally. He points his phone at me before speaking.

"You're my cousin and best friend! Of course I want to know," I decide I'll never understand Sora's logic, so I turn my attention back to the TV as a knock sounds from the door. Immediately, I look towards Sora and see him get up, a little grin on his face as he saunters over to the entrance. I hear the voices of Olette and Naminé as they all squeal in greeting to each other before the girls barge into my living room. I sigh before looking back at them from over the sofa's edge, and I watch my cousin and the two girls stand there watching me. The girls aren't taking off their coats, instead just smiling at me and it makes me wonder what's going on. " You know what, Roxas? It doesn't matter, I have ways of making you talk." Sora's shit eating grin makes me want to wring his neck.

My eyes widen in fear and my cousin laughs walking towards me and leaning against the backrest of the couch, he plucks the remote from my hands and shuts off the TV without even asking, the little shit. Naminé comes to stand beside him and Olette jumps over the armrest and lands beside me with an even bigger smile. "We think it's only fair that, since you haven't used the give it back to Sora," Olette is grinning so hard, it's almost as if she's seen the empty lube bottle sitting in the waste basket upstairs. I swallow, just a little nervous as I slowly realize I'm stuck.

I don't know where to buy lube, or else I'd tell them all to get out and say I have to find the unused bottle, and to do such, I have to clean out my room and while they're all out of my house waiting for me to find it, I'd drive off to the store and buy a new lube. That plan is almost perfect and it hurts me so much to know I'll never use it, because I don't fucking know where to buy damn lube!

All this reminds me that the bottle is bone dry and I'm going to want more sex and for that to happen, I need more lube but that also means telling them, right here, right now that I'm no longer a virgin. It means giving in to them and their stupid questions. My insides are turning and I feel sweat start collecting on my brow. I don't know what I'm going to do, but it seems that I'm just going to have to admit to using the lube. "Why are you both here?" Instead of answering, and to buy myself a bit more precious time, I question them and completely ignore what they asked. Seriously though, don't they have anything productive to do with their lives? They can't be that desperate to know if I've been deflowered or not, can they?

"We all want to be there when you have to buy yourself new lube," Naminé's eyes are glittering with excitement and I choke, hard. I start sputtering and coughing, trying to breathe while I listen to Sora laugh so hard, he just might wet himself. I look up through teary eyes and he smiles at me, ruffling the short hairs on my head.

"Axel tells Riku all about it, and you know Riku complains to me the whole time," Sora smirks and I sit there opening and closing my mouth, not really knowing what else to do or what to even say. He laughs before turning and moving to the foyer to grab my car keys.

"If you know, why the hell did you all bug me so much?" I glare at them as we get ready to head out, and they all laugh, Sora controlling himself enough to answer as he hands me my jacket from the front closet. I snatch it from his hands, along with my keys and shove my feet violently into my shoes. I'm a little angry at Axel because it seems he and Sora share a familiar trait. The blabber mouth trait, and lord knows how much I hate that.

"At first, I didn't believe it! I mean, you guys wasted that whole tube in no time, so I wanted to hear you admit it, you know, to make sure Axel wasn't just exaggerating...and then you got all weird and didn't want to tell me..."

Olette jumps in, opening the door for me and leading us out. "So, he asked us to help torture you, to get you to spill the beans," I stare at them one by one, each getting their own glare but they all just grin at me. "You could have ended this by admitting it, if you weren't such a weirdo!" I roll my eyes and unlock the car, letting them all climb in and before I have the chance to get in myself, the front door opens and a disgruntled Axel sticks his head out, his red hair standing all staticy around his head like a mane and I smile, all the rage completely forgotten.

"Where yah headin'?" He asks and I pause before answering, realizing that if I'm going to tell him the truth, I'm going to have to shout that I'm going to buy lube all the way from the drive way, for everyone to hear. I blink a few times before laughing and spitting out some horrible lie about going to buy something at the mall for Naminé. I don't even know how far away this place is, so I pray to God he doesn't ask which mall, because he needs to go to one too or something. He nods his head, before asking how long we'll take and I shrug, my hands getting sweaty as I wait anxiously for him to go back inside already! "Bring me back some mayo, like a big tub of it. Your Aunt Betty asked me ta get it, but I gotta clean," I wave it off, promising to bring the biggest tub I find because I know how much Uncle Leon loves potato salad and I'm sure that's what it's for.

When I get in the car and Axel shuts the front door, it's a relief and I realize they're all laughing at me. "What?" I bark, starting up the car and adjusting the mirrors. I don't always do it, though I know I should and since I remembered it this time, I do it. I spot Naminé smiling at me, and Olette is smiling too. "Seriously, what? You guys are scaring me."

"It was just funny how awkward your responses to Axel were," When Olette says this, they all burst out laughing again and I sigh, focusing on the road and trying to tune them out. It's a lot harder than you'd think, especially since Olette and Naminé are the worst back seat drivers, and Sora...he's just talking to hear his own voice. I decide on my own to get the mayo first, Sora can figure out the directions to the sex shop from the grocery store perfectly fine.

We get to the sex shop a lot faster than I thought we would, and it amazes me it's been this close to home and I've never even noticed. Sora smiles as he shuts the passenger side door and he looks over at me, the smile still in place. Apparently, he can get from the grocery store to the sex shop, no problem. "Excited?" he asks, his eyebrows raising on his forehead and I laugh, shaking my head.

"Why would I be excited?" I'm pushed towards the entrance by Olette and Naminé as Sora opens the door casually, letting us all in before coming in last. The door shuts with a little ding and I look around. The first thing I notice is...well...dildos, lots of fucking dildos, and there's a stripper pole in the middle of the store. I walk behind Sora, seeing as he's the one who's been in here before, and he's the one who knows where he's going. Naminé and Olette venture off on their own and I don't look towards where they've gone. I don't really want to see what caught their attention.

There's a sudden call of Sora's name and we both look back as a tiny girl with black hair bounds towards us, arms spread open and a smile way too big for her tiny face. My cousin spots her, screaming "Yuffie!" Before running towards her, meeting in the middle with a crash. I wince, as they cling tightly to each other and laugh. With an expert roll of my eyes, I turn away from them and see where Sora had been taking me, so I finish the rest of the journey alone, wondering just why my cousin has to be such a twit.

It's like a huge bookshelf, but instead of carrying books it's filled with an array of bottles, pretty, little vials and boxes. Closer inspection tells me this is their lube selection, and to say I'm not impressed would be a lie. I have no idea which I should grab, all I want is lube...nothing too fancy. There is so many to choose from, it makes it even harder to know which I should take, so I stand there, a little dumbstruck as I read the different flavors and sensations. Really? I thought it was more of a 'One Lube Works For All' kind of thing. Obviously, this is not the case.

I feel a hand on my shoulder and I jump, almost dropping the bottle I'd grabbed for a closer look and Sora saves it just in time, slipping it back into my grasp and patting the top of my hand. He smiles before introducing the girl he was hugging. "Roxas, this is my friend and the manager of The Fantasy Shop, Yuffie!" The girl hops over to me, and wraps her arms around me as I stand there, holding the lube tightly in my hand. She pulls away, spotting my selection and smiles.

"It's a pleasure to finally meet you! Sora's told me all about you!" I send my cousin a look and they both laugh, before Yuffie plucks the bottle from my hand and I step out of her way. She reaches over and switches the lube I had grabbed for a different one before she hands it to me. "Here, I recommend this one, 10% off just for you. I'll let you boys enjoy the rest of the shop," She giggles before prancing off and I stand there looking at the bottle. It's pretty, but not too pretty like some of the other ones. I'd never buy any of those elaborate bottles, because knowing my luck, my mom would probably end up thinking it's some cologne or hand cream...and I don't even want to think past that. I decide I'll take it, because who am I to say no to a 10% discount? No one, that's who. I look towards my cousin and he smiles, wrapping his arm around my shoulders.

"I come here quite often, I've got like, costumer appreciation!" My cousin laughs as we reach the register and I spot Naminé and Olette, each with their own little black bags and I wonder who else is in here selling things as I try and ignore the knowledge that Sora's a regular at a sex shop. I eye the two girls and they wink at me as I place my item on the counter. Yuffie pops up out of nowhere, and I almost shit myself. My heart is beating pretty hard when she scans the bottle and places it into my own black bag, taking the money before handing me my change with a smile. I hear Olette and Naminé share a little giggle but don't turn around.

"You take care, and I'll see you again soon!" She waves us off and out of the store before going back to doing whatever she was doing, and my cousin leads us all out. It actually wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, weird store manager aside, it was pretty easy. I unlock the car again, letting them all in before getting in myself. Again, I remember to check the mirrors and when I look back, I also remember Naminé and Olette buying something.

"What did you guys buy?" I ask curiously, but they just grin at me. It's a telling kind of grin, one that tells me I'd rather not know what they bought in there, unless I want to puke out my eye sockets.

"Oh you know, stuff." I decide I won't question it any further, listening to my intuition and pull out of the parking lot. Now all that's left, is to go home and get ready for the onslaught of family coming in tomorrow.

When I get home, the house is spotless. I look around, setting my keys and Slushie on the end table. It's completely silent and I wonder where the redhead went, until I hear movement coming from upstairs. I clutch the black bag in my hand tightly before marching up the stairs and towards Axel's room. As I'm about to finish climbing the steps, Oblivion's tail appears right under my foot and the loud screech makes me erupt in goosebumps.

I feel her paws hit my leg before I can feel her nails going through the fabric and into my skin. When she does get a good grip, I howl in pain, throwing a hand out to grab the railing. I want to shake her off my leg, but I also don't want to send her flying down the stairs. "Axel, help!" I call out, Oblivion still spazzing on my leg, scratching at it like a post. Slowly but surely, Axel comes out and finds me clutching at the railing, Oblivion attached to my leg and hissing at me.

"What's this?" he says with a chuckle, coming over and gently prying the cat off my leg. I stare in angry confusion as she transforms from a flesh eating demon into a soft and cuddly kitten in seconds. Axel rubs her head, making her purr happily and I glare before moving past them cautiously and towards the room, Axel following behind laughing.

"Get her away from me...I swear, she's not even a cat!" I toss the bag onto the bed and rip my jacket off, throwing it onto the floor before dropping my pants. As expected, there's a few bloody spots but no real damage and for that, I can thank good old denim. It stings like hell regardless and I wobble towards the medicine cabinet in the bathroom as Axel sets her down on the floor.

"She just knows yah don't like 'er," I hear Axel grabbing the bag, the unmistakeable sound of crinkling plastic reaching my ears as I grab a cotton ball with some rubbing alcohol for my stab wounds. It stings so bad, I have to fight off tears but I'd rather disinfect them than leave them dirty. I look up to find Axel leaning on the door frame with a wide smirk on his face, the lube in his hand and I blush before tossing away the used cotton ball.

"I love that demon cat, she just gets on my nerves and terrifies me," I say and Axel takes a step into the bathroom, nodding his head like he totally understands what I mean.

He doesn't stop until he's standing right in front of me, and I look up at him, realizing he's still holding the lube. "Kinda like me, huh?" I smile, nodding my head before grabbing the lube from him.

"10% off," I say a little awkwardly, because I really don't know what else to say. I can't come up with anything clever or sexy, so...well, whatever!

"Roxas, yah know how discounts turn me on," The grin on Axel's face makes butterflies suddenly start fluttering viciously in my stomach and I have trouble keeping my legs stiff enough to hold me up.

"It's why I mentioned it," I let out a sorry excuse for a laugh, before Axel stops any more useless words by kissing me. I wrap my arms around him, and it seems to be a mutual agreement to try out bathroom sex.

Sunlight is my sworn enemy. Every time my face grows hot and my eyelids turn bright red, I curse the big fire ball in the sky. I will one day get my revenge for all the countless dreams ruined, and all the perfectly comfortable sleeps disrupted, just not today. This particular morning, it isn't sunshine that wakes me up though, but the feeling of being watched. I shiver, squeezing my eyes tight, afraid to open them and see my attacker from the bar. Yeah, I still occasionally freak out about that, but I'm getting better with Axel's help. My hand worms around under the covers until it finds Axel's, and I lace our fingers together. He's still asleep, I can tell by the total lack of response when I squeeze his hand.

I decide that at the count of three, I'll open my eyes but it takes a few tries until I gather the courage. I scream when I spot two big blue eyes staring right into my face at such a close proximity. Axel jolts up in the bed, his eyes wide as he looks around the room for what made me scream. He starts to laugh when he spots Xion kneeling at my bedside. I push her face away from mine, my heart pounding viciously in my chest and she just giggles, like giving someone a heart attack is freaking hilarious. "You're awake Roxas!" She screams, and I don't know how to respond. I'm obviously awake now.

When she gets that look on her face, the There's-A-Perfectly-Good-Bed-To-Jump-On look, I panic, remembering that underneath the thin covers, I am completely naked and covered in my own baby batter. Axel notices the change in my expression and in Xion's, slowly remembering our conversation the previous night. The grin that spreads across his face makes me want to slap him.

"Are yah sure yah ain't gonna shower Roxas?"


"Yah stink and are all sticky."


"Alright, alright."

Looking back, I should have showered but I was so, so, so tired. He could have easily carried me to the bathtub, but I guess he was pretty tired too. Well, it's too late for regrets now. I'm filthy, and Xion still has that look on her face, and I can tell at any moment, she's gonna bounce. Before either of us can stop her, she's flying through the air, over me completely and lands right between Axel and me. I grab the sheets quickly, clutching them to my chest as she gets comfortable. I shoot Axel a look over her head, but he's too busy trying not to piss himself laughing. "What's so funny Axel?" Xion asks, tilting her head in his direction, and I wonder the probability of me successfully slipping out of bed and finding clothes before my cousin sees me naked.

Axel, of course is always ready with an answer and doesn't miss a beat. "I just remembered this real funny show on TV, wanna come with to check if it's on?" Xion, never wanting to miss a moment of comedy, quickly scurries off the bed and runs towards the door, rushing Axel in fear of missing the show that probably doesn't even exist. "Get a head start, I'll be down when I find a shirt!" My cousin obediently leaves the room and I watch her in disbelief. Why does everything work out so well for him, but is always so complicated for me? He rolls over to catch me glaring at him. "What?"

"It's not fair...Oblivion loves you and Xion listens to you...what the hell, man?" I huff and cross my arms over my chest, this causes Axel to laugh loudly before he grabs my arms and wraps them around himself, tugging me against him. I nuzzle into his neck, inhaling the clean scent of his skin before mentally cursing the fact that my entire family is probably downstairs. Axel seems to remember this too because he pulls away, leaving me with a chaste kiss.

"Go shower, I meant it when I said yah stunk," He laughs, rolling out of bed and finding both a t-shirt and pants without really looking around. I don't tell him the shirt he's wearing is mine, and let him waltz out of the room. He's a brave, brave man, I'll give him that.

I feel much better after my shower, and it seems that since I'm awake, the party was thrown into full swing. I can hear the loud laughter and chatter coming from downstairs and I brace myself. I remember the last family reunion, and it was nothing short of dramatic. I'm sure nothing like that will happen again, but what worries me, is what will happen this time. My entire family hasn't seen what I did to my hair, so they're all going to flip shit when they see how short it is, compared to how it used to be. Hopefully, that's the most drama that'll go down tonight. I throw on a pair of old shorts and a t-shirt. It's just family downstairs, I don't have to dress up for anybody.

I was right about the party going full throttle. When I get downstairs, the whole family is sitting in the living room, watching Sora and it looks like he's trying to be...a sea lion? I can't tell, so I stay quiet as I slip into the living room, trying to find my parents. I spot Demyx sitting beside his boyfriend Zexion, and I wave from my side of the room. "Roxas!" Everyone seems to spot me at the same time, and it's a collective call of my name, all of them waving happily. Then comes the moment they all realize I cut my hair, and the different questions all come flying at the same time. I spot both my parents sitting in between Aunt Betty and Uncle Leon and use them as an excuse to ignore everyone. You'd think I was the one who left on vacation for weeks, instead of them, with the way they're all waving and shit.

"Good gravy!" My grandmother Anita calls, her big blue eyes bugging out of her head, "Sarah, what happened to the boy's lovely hair?" My grandmothers both look so sad that all my bouncy hair is gone, Uncle Zack just seems to find it hilarious. Upon closer inspection, I see that my entire family isn't in the living room. There are two people missing...the only two people you wouldn't want to be missing. Aunt Alice and Uncle John. I stand behind the couch their sitting on, not wanting to be too far from people with those psychos on the loose but not wanting to get sucked into whatever the hell is happening in here.

"What did I walk in on?" I raise an eyebrow, sending Sora a look as he lays on his stomach on the floor.

"Charades. Wanna join?" Belle's eyes sparkle at the mere thought of me playing a game with the family, but as usual, I shake my head and tell them I'm going to grab something to eat. I turn but pause at the archway, looking in both directions before bolting towards the kitchen.

When I'm about to walk into the dinning room, I bounce right back, landing harshly on my ass with a loud thud. I'm so confused, I can't even explain it to you, but with a closer look, I see the sheen of plastic wrap, placed expertly in the doorway. Aunt Alice and Uncle John both appear at the same time, their eyes tearing, their faces turning red as they both laugh themselves silly. I get up slowly, not impressed at all, and tear down the damn wrap. "Oh Roxas, you should have seen your face!" Aunt Alice howls as I walk past her, Uncle John agreeing that it was simply the funniest thing he's ever seen, but according to him, everything that makes him laugh is the funniest thing he's ever seen.

I look back at them, just to check that they're both there before pushing open the kitchen doors and I deem it safe when I walk in because there's no one around. Aunt Alice and Uncle John are still chuckling, but I can hear them leaving, heading back towards the living room...or at least I hope they are. I don't want to walk into another trap.

I open the fridge, just as someone pushes their way into the kitchen, my body tensing, preparing itself for whoever just walked in. "They got yah with the plastic wrap huh?" Axel can't hide the laughter from his voice as he comes towards me and pulls me away from the fridge. I ignore him, trying to worm my way back because I am starving. There is so much food and sweets in the fridge, my stomach is growling angrily, demanding to be fed. "I don't get why yah look into the fridge, yah ain't ever cook anything," The redhead says this with a smug look on his face and I shut the fridge, turning slowly to look at him. He waits, almost like he knows I can't think of anything to say. My brain struggles to find a good come back, but all I can think about is the cake I spotted in the fridge.

"Why should I cook? I've got you doing it for me," I smile, the best, sweetest smile I can conjure and it works like a charm. Axel grins, reaching out and pulling me in for a hug. I thought I was far enough that he wouldn't reach me, but the bastard's got some long ass arms. I feel a little nervous hugging in the kitchen, my whole family is really unpredictable, so any of them, if not all of them, can come barging in at any given second and I have no idea if any of them know exactly just what went on after the last reunion. I peal myself away with a great deal of effort and before Axel can start my breakfast, my mom walks in.

"Pumpkin!" My mom races over to me, clinging like she hasn't seen me in years and I pat her back, feeling like all my bones are being crushed into fine powder. With a wheeze, I squirm my way out of her clutches. "I missed you so much! Aw, look at your hair, it's gotten longer!" She ruffles the hairs on my head, and I swat her hand away.

"Mom, it hasn't been that long," Why are mothers all so embarrassing? I swear, they forget how to be normal people once they give birth. After that, everything that's socially acceptable to say or do, seems to vanish and in it's place, the knowledge of how to make your kid feel the most uncomfortable.

"For me, it's been ages," She pouts before turning to look at Axel, smiling all the while. "And look at you! You get manlier every day!" I fight against face palming myself, and instead grab my mom's arm while Axel laughs, thanking her in this soft voice and I wonder if maybe, she's embarrassing him too. I stop, an evil idea forming in my head and I send Axel a devilish grin.

"He most certainly does, doesn't he?" I chirp from beside my mom and she nods her head enthusiastically.

"And I bet it pleases you, right honey?" My plan backfires right away, and what makes it worse, is that everyone walks into the kitchen now, each with their own look of questioning.

"I don't want to know," My father says, quickly walking towards me and patting my shoulder. "Nice to see you again, stranger," It's all he says before my Uncle Zack comes sprinting towards him, throwing himself onto my father's back. This seems to set off a chain reaction, everyone in the kitchen starts running around like headless chickens and in seconds, it's a chaotic mess. Uncle Maurice running after the kids pretending to be a monster.

I somehow end up half way across the fucking kitchen, staring longingly at the fridge, and all the deliciousness I know is within its depths. I'm safe here for the most part, no one's spotted me and they are all still being weirdos but I'm so far from the food. I have to find a way to get all these crazies outside, and I spot the key to my success. The side door. I slowly ease my way towards it, careful not to make a sound and I open the door. The first one to see outside is Belle, and with a high pitched war cry, she's running out into the yard. Xion follows after her, and just as I had planned, everyone else decides outside is a better place to horse around.

The kitchen is emptied, and when everyone is out, it's just me, Axel, my mother and father. "When are we eating?" I say out loud, seriously wondering when it'll be time for lunch. I don't think my stomach can hold off any longer, and it'll soon resort to eating away at itself.

"I'm going to start the grill now," My father slips out back, and the noise is cut off when he shuts the door. It's still not completely silent, I can hear everyone laughing and shouting but it's muffled, so I can live with that...and to think, they haven't even started drinking yet. Or at least, I don't think they have. Knowing my family, they'll all be plastered by the time they have to come back inside.

"Axel, why don't you invite your brother for lunch? We'll have the whole family here," My mom turns away from us and starts grabbing plates, setting them on the counter and I look towards Axel. His eyes are wide, and he keeps blinking, like she just spoke to him in another language. The silence is obviously not what my mother was expecting, so she turns around to see what's holding Axel's tongue. I don't know why he's being so quiet either, and I really would like to know what did this to him. He clears his throat, quickly shaking his head.

"Sorry...s'just...y'all consider us family?" I know Axel is in for quite the tongue lashing when my mother furrows her brow and stops what she's doing. She'll usually just keep talking while she works, but when she has to's probably going to be this long ass, intense speech. I'd like to know the answer to this question too, so I settle myself onto a bar stool and watch as my mother walks over to Axel, placing a hand on his shoulder.

"Darling, of course. You're Roxas'..." My mom pauses for a second, before looking towards me and I wonder what she's thinking. "Are you two even dating?" She twists her mouth up in thought and I shrug, looking towards Axel. Now that she mentions it, I'm not even sure if we are. All I know is that I love him and he loves me back. We haven't even discussed our relationship, so I have no idea what's going to happen once he has to go back home with Reno...I get a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach and I look quickly towards Axel at the same time my mother does.

"I thought we, if Roxas told yah different..." Axel raises both his short, stubby eyebrows, along with his shoulders in a shrug, as the attention is taken off him and brought back onto me onto me.

"Roxas never tells me anything," My mother sighs and Axel laughs, looking like he knows exactly what she's talking about. "Well, regardless if you two are dating, you've been welcomed into the family and if you can forgive my actions in the past, I hope you still want to be a part of it." I watch her hands nervously twist together and Axel stays quiet for a few seconds. The longer he goes without saying anything, the more terrified I become.

"Would yah mind if I use the house phone?" Axel smiles brightly, and I can see my mother release the breath she'd been holding before rushing to grab the cordless phone.

"Of course not!" She hands it over to him, and the redhead dials, moving away to talk to his brother. The smile is on his face the whole time, which makes a smile slowly break out across mine. My mother obviously sees this, seeing as she was staring right at me, the creep. "I guess we'll officially announce you two being an item at lunch then," I turn to look at her, eyes wide and almost falling out of my skull but I see she isn't joking...she looks very serious.

And what the hell does she mean by officially?

Time seems to be ticking by slowly, and lunch was supposed to be ready in "15 minutes, tops" but it's been half an hour since then and there's no sign of food. My mother, after her weird statement, didn't answer my question and just shooed me from the kitchen, telling me to go hang out with my cousins. Apparently she's noticed I don't really socialize with people besides Axel, and I wonder if she forgets I go to school and this is Spring break, my week off having to socialize. She also hasn't even been here, how would she know what I've been doing?

That was what feels like hours ago, but it's only been an hour. My stomach, I'm sure is half way through devouring itself and the cramps are nothing short. I told Axel this and he says I'm exaggerating, but he doesn't know. He thinks the dinner from the previous night could hold me off this long. I'm a growing boy damn it.

I groan, and Sora looks at me from over his cards. I'm not fooled by their card game, I know it's not serious and I'm not interrupting no battle of the brains. After all it's between Sora and Demyx and both of them combined know as much about cards as a new born gorilla. "You hungry too?" Sora asks with a frown, then looks at the time and back down at his cards. I can tell he's desperate to jump into the fridge but is using this little game to distract himself. After all, he loves food more than anyone I know, even more than I do.

"Yeah, I didn't get to eat breakfast," This is usually how a family reunion goes, the adults outside doing their thing, taking forever to make lunch, while we sit inside. It's not even that nice out, but they don't seem to care. Riku and Axel are both out there too, and Reno got here a long time ago...or at least it feels that way. It was probably like 20 minutes ago.

I didn't have to see him, because he went to the backyard through the side of the house. I know he's here though, because I can hear him nice and clear. Axel, Riku and Reno are the only ones with those weird accents, and then I can tell all their voices apart, so Reno doesn't need to come in. Thank god. It took me quite a while to get used to Axel, and Reno is like...10 times worse. My mom however, seems to think he's hilarious. Every now and then I'll hear him say something, and shortly after I'll hear my mother's laugh, the laugh that usually comes out at Christmas parties after she's had a bit of wine. The thing is, she isn't drunk because she hasn't been drinking since her accident. I can only assume, Reno is a comical genius.

I look at the time, hoping it's gone by, at least a little bit. I see with relief that it has, and sure enough my father calls from the kitchen for everyone to take a seat. Sora and Demyx put their cards down and I realize Zexion's been here the whole freaking time! He shifts from the armchair and follows my cousin towards the dinning room. Sora stands and dusts off the bottom of his pants before looking at me, asking if I'm ready to go. Stupid question, of course I'm freaking ready.

When I walk in to the dinning room, I spot Axel and Reno, sitting close to my mom. Reno is sitting across from Axel leaving an open space for me beside the redhead. Everyone else is already seated and I curse myself for letting that happen. I should have just been sitting here from earlier, to avoid being the center of attention. I look around and notice no one is actually looking at me, they're all engulfed in their own little conversations waiting for Uncle Leon and my dad to come out with the barbeque. Even the kids are busy talking to each other.

Everything on the table looks delicious but I realize I'm only thinking all this to avoid the fact that soon, when everyone is present and accounted mother is going to formally introduce Reno and tell everyone about Axel and me. My heart is pounding in my chest and I feel like hiding under the table, but my damn stomach keeps me seated here, waiting to be fed.

I spot Axel watching me from the corner of his eye and I look towards him, catching sight of Reno speaking to my Aunt Aerith. I wonder briefly what the hell they could be talking about before paying attention to Axel.

"Yah nervous?" He asks and I shrug, not wanting to openly admit that I'm about to hyperventilate. I spot Sora from across the table and he waves, Riku sitting beside him and it surprises me when he sends me a little finger wave. I don't wave back because they are stupid for even doing it, we aren't sitting that far away from each other, really. They're just a few seats down. "Yah look nervous," Axel whispers and I jump at the breathy voice. He pulls away with a smile and I glare at him. It worries me that we still haven't talked about when he's going to leave and what happens then.

"Maybe just a little," Right after I finish that sentence my father comes in with Uncle Leon in tow. I realize Uncle Zack was in the kitchen with them when he comes out and sits on my Aunt's other side, rubbing his hands together and licking his lips while looking at the food. I can imagine Sora doing the exact same thing and it makes me want to laugh. I don't even know why I'm nervous, my family is pretty cool. Crazy, but cool.

My dad takes his seat at the same time as Uncle Leon and then, my mom looks right at me, standing up and calling everyone's attention to her. My stomach still flips nervously when I hear my entire family shift in their seats to listen to what my mother has to say. Axel holds out his hand under the table and I grab it, deciding...what the hell, what's the worst that could happen?

"Everyone, I'd like to welcome Reno, Axel's brother into the family." It's the usual claps and Reno sends out a wave like the Queen of England, earning himself a good laugh. My mother smiles at Reno before continuing, like I knew she would. "Along with this great addition, there's something else that should be said," I don't know if she pauses for dramatic effect or if it's to breathe, and then I realize it's because she's looking at me and so is everyone else.

I swallow hard, and I try to find my voice but come up short each time. "Uh...We're dating," I stammer and my Aunt Betty's eyes widen but I don't know why. The entire table is silent, and I look around not really knowing what's going on. I ignore the fact that Sora and Riku seem to snickering at some funny untold joke.

"You're dating Axel's brother?"

"No! I'm dating Axel," I cry out, remembering that not everyone can see us holding hands under the table. I hold up our hands and everyone starts to laugh, Axel and Reno probably laughing the hardest.

When it dies down a little, my Uncle Leon looks at me, smiling. I know, it scares me too.

"Roxas, we all know that, she's just teasing," It's a relief but I still feel stupid. The blush burns my cheeks, I can feel the heat almost coming off them and I look down into my plate. Soon enough everyone with shut up and start eating.

"Well, with that being said...everyone, dig in," My mom takes her seat again and everyone jumps into action, passing food bowls every which way. My stomach growls fiercely and I almost drool all over everything when I finally get my hands on some chicken.

The rest of the day pretty much passes the same way as before lunch for me, and the night time rolls around quickly. I'm sitting outside on the back porch with Sora, Riku, Axel, Demyx and his boyfriend. I don't know where Lewis is, but I'm willing to bet he's inside on his laptop. Again, lucky bastard, everything seems to easy peasy for him. No hassles, I'm telling you. Though, I'm not complaining about where I am, curled against Axel's side, comfy and warm. The kids have fallen asleep, giving the parents the real go ahead to start partying. The adults are all in the basement, and even if they say they are down there to make less noise, I can still hear them from outside. Luckily, all those kids seem to be sleeping right through it. Sora sighs, looking down at the face of Riku in his lap, before looking up at me and finally, looking around at everyone else. "This would be more comfortable if Roxas and Riku got along, who agrees?"

"Mmm, I agree," Axel hums, fluffing the short hairs on the top of my head before I look up at him, sending him a dirty look. I don't like Riku for my own reasons, and he still has his own issues to deal with but I guess we haven't really been too discreet about our hatred. I can imagine how it makes Axel and my cousin feel, seeing as they both have no problems with either of us. It must be because I'm in a good mood that I decide to actually start trying with Riku again. I know we said we'd do it for Sora's sake, all the way back in the bar but we never really followed through. Now that I'm sober, and he's only a little tipsy, I think would be the perfect time to renew that promise. The booze will soften him up for me, I hope.

"We said we'd get along...Remember Riku?" He makes a sound in agreement, but I don't see his face. Sora looks at me, almost like he's trying to assure me that Riku does remember. I shrug, before trying to find the words to convey the proper message. I still don't like him, but I don't want to all out hate him forever. "Well, how about we promise to actually follow through? For Axel and Sora's sake this time," It bothers me that I can't see his face because then I'd at least be able to see his reaction. All I have is Sora's face to go off of. If Riku says no, or anything rude, I'll go on being a dick to him. Axel and Sora could work something out but I won't do this again.

"Alright...but only 'cause you finally seem to be gettin' it," I don't know what the hell that's supposed to mean, but Sora laughs, looking at me and smiling, so I guess it's a good thing.

"Well, I'll be able to sleep in peace tonight," I say, settling against Axel and Demyx laughs, stretching his neck out to look at me.

"Pffft, with all the sex you've been having, I'm sure you pass out with your ass out at night, right Axel?"

"Like a rock," Axel says with a smirk and I can't believe this is happening. I look at Sora right away and he just shrugs, laughing a little before speaking.

"It just amazed me a little, that's all!" I'm going to die one day because of him. I'm serious, that Sora Leonhart is going to be the fucking death of me.

The time for everyone to head home quickly approaches, and they all gather in my dad's car, and Uncle Zack's car, my mother and Aunt Aerith at the wheels, driving all the other adults home. I guess they'll all come for their cars tomorrow. I notice Reno's bike is still parked in our driveway when the vehicles pull away and the house goes quiet. Sora and his family are gone, and so are all the kids. The only one's home are Axel, Reno (apparently) my dad and me. I head back into the house and search for Axel right away, wondering if he's heading home tonight and if he wants me to drive him there with his brother. I'm hoping he'll be staying the night, Reno can always sleep in the guest room, so I don't want to ask right away. I gotta see what he's doing first.

I stop when I get to the stairs, spotting my dad in the living room sitting on the sofa with Reno, the TV on in the background. I hear a loud snore before realizing they're both passed out, so maybe Axel isn't leaving tonight. I climb up the stairs quickly, finding the room door slightly open and I fight against the urge to smile. I walk in calmly, completely collected but nervous to see Axel packing. He could always just wake Reno up and shove him into the back seat of my car. To my relief, Axel is laying on the bed. The bad news, Oblivion is curled up happily on his chest. I don't trust her at all, so I'm not even sure I want to lay down. I could be perfectly still and she'll decide my stomach looks like a lovely nail sharpener.

"Hey," Axel says softly, looking towards me before plucking the cat from his chest and setting her down. She quickly leaves the room and I finally feel comfortable. Don't get me wrong, I love my cat but she scares me something fierce, as I'm sure I've mentioned. I move and crawl into the bed, pealing off my shorts under the covers then tossing them away. Every time I do this, Axel always laughs and tonight is no exception. When I'm settled, and he's somehow managed to get under the blankets, I decide is the time to talk about important stuff. I wriggle my way over to him, and right away, he slides his arm under my head and pulls me towards him. I sigh contently, completely understanding Oblivion's love for being cuddled by Axel.

"What's going to happen when you leave?" I ask quietly, and he pulls me away from his neck, looking confused.

"Nothin', I'm gonna go live with my brother the next city over...but it ain't too far a drive Roxas. Besides, we've got phones and computers, we'll manage," Axel kisses me on the lips and for some reason, I believe every word he says. I nod my head, looking at him and I feel so damn sappy for thinking it but I do. This is the happiest I've been in my entire life.

"Yeah, we'll manage," I say before hiding my face against him again, feeling completely drained of energy. It might be because I'm so tired, but I'm not worried about Axel leaving. It's completely different than when he left the first time. This time, he doesn't hate my guts.

It hits me then, right as I'm about to fall asleep, just how much has happened in the last few months and I hold on to Axel tighter. The way this whole thing ended up, is pretty crazy. I mean, I never would have expected to be here, all the way back when I first saw Axel in my foyer, all mangey and intrusive, in my mind he was nothing but a criminal. I'm sure as hell my mother never thought it would be this way either. It's been a really crazy time, but I'm glad it all came out this way. I love Axel Black to death, and yeah, it might not be brotherly love (like my mother had been hoping) but it's something like it, I guess.

The End.

A/N: Oh my god, I can't believe this story is finally done. It seems like it's been forever, and I went through such a crazy slew of emotions over the course of this fic.
In the end, I'm pretty happy with the final chapter and the way everything came to a close. I figured since the whole fic revolved around family somewhat, I might as well end it with Roxas and his family.

Wow...I still can't believe it. I'm so grateful to have each and every reader, every single review helped me and in it's own way shaped this story.
I love each and every one of you, and as always, I'll see you in another story!

-jumps into the sea-

Some Brotherly Love Fun Facts:

- Riku originally had no place in the story
- Oblivion was made to seem like a heartless from the game (duh), what with the black body and yellow eyes. Explains why she was so vicious to Roxas too xD
- Instead of the Tandem Bicycle scene, Axel and Roxas had originally played Monopoly. Axel was awesome at that too, if you're wondering.

Much crazy, lusty love, Sharmander.