A/N: Hey everyone! 3
I do feel better…finally
Okay, humble pie time ;D
Thanks to: 3R15UK0UM31, 411-Get-A-Life, Candycraver, MuffinaCa, xxCassiexx, Invader Blunt, XxVampirethatdoesnotsparklexX, Zomby, Shade's Crusnik, ParalyticDreamx, Jordan, Kata8849and Maura. Your reviews were really great and just the pick me up I needed. XD
Special thanks to: Psychic City, Molly, Beatlemaniac1, cherry-magpie-x, Rin Koorbloh, Alexis, The Hazel-Eyed Angel, Nicky-Rockit, your wrost nightmareandIan St. George. For your kind words and support during my personal crisis, it was really wonderful to read your reviews. My god! I sound like a Disney character…
Oh, Wordwryhta, Can I just carry you around in my pocket please, you always cheer me up when I need it, fank yew!
SLOWBOAT TO HADES: A GORILLAZ CHALLENGE! Wordwryhta has posted the rules and regulations so check it out! If you want in on the action PM her or me and we'll post a list of all those involved. (Don't worry you will be credited for your contribution :D)
So, chapter 9…I give you…a happy chapter! Yays! Well, not completely, but this is the most fluff worthy chapter I have written yet :D I've been focusing a lot on 2D's mental recovery in recent chapters and thought that maybe we should have some 2DxNoodle progress…here you go…
Disclaimer: Damon and Jamie own Gorillaz, however I own a tribute band called Gibbonz.
9. The Therapy Of Amity
She blinked. There wasn't much else she could do at that moment. Her jaw dropped slightly. The words passing through her mind as she attempted to comprehend the meaning behind them. Her mind working like the cogs of a clock, deciphering what the appropriate reaction should be. Yet after all of her figuring out, she just blinked.
Eventually Noodle was able to force an audible response to rise within her throat, though what intended to be words came out as a low pitched grunt. She held a hand up to her head and attempted to piece together a more appropriate response to the singer's confession.
"What do you mean?" The painfully obvious question came to the front of her mind immediately. She felt useless, but, in order to actually help him, she needed to understand him. But her question was met by silence as the blue haired man continued to stare at the empty space ahead of him. The concentration he held to the vacant area of carpet was immense, she wasn't even sure if he heard her. Noodle swallowed the lump in her throat and brushed a few strands of purple hair behind her ear before talking again.
"Does she talk to you?" The guitarist took a step forward and gently took a hold of the singer's hand. She attempted to reassure him by giving it a slight squeeze and rubbed her thumb over the top of his palm. Noodle moved closer to him, he still had his backed turned on her. In any other situation she would have become frustrated at his unwillingness to cooperate, but now she was beginning to understand. He had opened the door to her and was inviting her inside…he was getting better.
2D continued to stare blankly ahead, he couldn't understand how his hallucination had just vanished. As soon as he spoke the words to Noodle, she had evaporated into thin air. The pressure in his head that also seemed to grow whenever the cyborg was present, had also dulled. He had never had any control over his migraines or his hallucinations before, but now it was as if he had power over them. The tall singer continued to stare and even found himself in a slight daze which he was quickly brought out of once he felt the soft touch of Noodle's palm under his own. It was then that he remembered that the guitarist was actually still present, maybe she helped him fight off his demons.
Eventually he turned to face her, his features displaying a mixed expression of unease and relief. He was uncertain of how the young guitarist would handle his revelation. A constant nagging in the back of his mind told him that she would turn her back on him and walk away just as everyone else he cared about had. Another voice stated that it would be best if she did, he could only hurt her after all.
2D took a deep breath and offered her a small goofy grin, a mask of his former self; his smiles had not been genuine in a long time. Noodle saw through his façade and continued to press on with her interrogation. She shook her head slightly and continued in a small voice.
"How long?" She slightly arched one eyebrow and asked the question again to ensure that it was fully comprehended. "How long have you been hallucinating?"
"Erm" the vocalist stalled to buy himself time. He was reluctant to share any further details with her, afraid she would become more distressed than she already was. Eventually the honesty within him won over. He sighed, raising his hand to the back of his head and attempted to make light of the situation.
"Since yew killed 'er." He said in a light-hearted manor and offered her another false smile. He tried to ignore her sharp intake of breath and the expression of horror which plagued her features. She had lifted a petite hand to her mouth and froze in that expression, the brims of her eyes filling with bitter tears. After her silence, the singer continued to fill the air between them which was already growing cold. "So erm, about free weeks." His sentence trailed off into a whisper and silence consumed them once again.
2D let out a deep sigh at the uncomfortable atmosphere developing around them. He shifted his gaze to look over the young woman's shoulder and stare blankly at the ocean view which his large bedroom windows offered. He unconsciously placed his hands in his jean pockets and gave Noodle the opportunity to leave. He waited in his position for a few moments before swiftly looking back at her, wondering why she hadn't taken to opportunity to flee. But then again, this was Noodle, she would never run out on this sort of situation, she was far too stubborn.
The vocalist opened his mouth to prompt a reaction from the guitarist but was caught off guard when she quickly threw her slender arms around his middle and pushed her face into his chest. A damp spot soon began to grow on his white t-shirt as she continued to cry into him. Unknown to the singer, it was the young woman's guilt that was fuelling her sobs. How could she possibly not have picked up on the singer's behaviour? She should have known he was going through something so traumatic. So much for Zen bond, she wasn't even able to detect a slightest sign of his inner turmoil.
"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry that you had to go through this on your own!" She mumbled her strained apology into the cotton covering his torso. Her sentences were disjoined and interrupted by her choked cries. She managed to compose herself long enough to lift her face up to gain his eye contact once again before whimpering her condolences.
"Never again. Y-you'll never go through this on your own again." She vowed before returning to the sobbing mess she was. Noodle felt useless, like she had reverted back to a cowering child who needed to be consoled. She hated this feeling, hated the way it made her vulnerable, but at the same time loved the fact that only a certain Stuart Pot was able to bring it out of her. A wave of nostalgia flushed over her as the familiar feeling of being calmed down after a nightmare by 2D returned from her childhood. But now, it was his nightmare that she needed to rid him of. His imaginary monsters haunting his subconscious.
After she had clung to him for what seemed like hours, the young woman had calmed down enough to let go of the strained vocalist. She took a firm grip on his hand and used her free hand to wipe the mist from her eyes and her damp cheeks. She then took a deep breath and pulled the older man along behind her as she made her way over to sit on the end of his bed. 2D obediently followed her lead but remained silent. He couldn't quiet figure out Noodle's reaction, he wasn't sure whether he had caused her distress or not.
A mutual understanding arose within each of them at that particular moment. It suddenly became very clear to 2D what it was that he had to do. Talk. He had to talk to Noodle. It was so painfully obvious yet he had chosen to stay oblivious to it. The therapy of amity was the turning point in his progress. He almost told her everything, almost. There was still a barrier inside his head which prevented him from revealing his horrific vision of her death. He couldn't face bringing the image of Noodle's lifeless, blood soaked body back to the front of his thoughts, he knew that if he did, the image would burn right through his mind and haunt him for days, staining his every thought.
2D talked, Noodle listened.
She continued to listen, taking it all in. She would occasionally nod her head or give his hand a slight squeeze whenever his expression showed any sign of anguish. She was there for him, silently helping him come to terms with the misery he had endured, she was were she should have been from the very beginning. The vocalist talked about his past, the issues that had previously been repressed into the corners of his mind. It hurt him, deeply, to relive his most traumatic experiences; Paula, the drastic changes in his appearance, Murdoc's abuse, El Manana, everything.
A few hours had passed after the singer's initial confession. Since then Noodle had never left his side. A lighter feeling had taken over from the previously dark weight of dread which had constantly plagued 2D's psyche over the passed couple of weeks. He knew that he was still a great distance from being declared sane, but, he had hope now. A new optimism which seemed to occupy his head. It felt…good, an alien feeling that he had recently forgotten.
2D took a moment to bask in the brilliance of Noodle, she had been his release. She had stayed with him and tolerated his insanity and she didn't even seem phased by anything. He admired at how mature she was about everything, and how she seemed so grounded, so in sync with everything and everyone around her. He was sent into a slight daze and didn't seem to notice her rising from her seating position and make her way over to his bedroom door.
Snapping back to reality came easily to the singer, he had gotten so far into his own thoughts lately that it became routine for him to drift off and float back at the most opportune moments. He quickly rose from his bed, ignoring the slight stinging in his chest as he realised that he had moved too suddenly. He swiftly caught up with the guitarist and walked her to his door in a lame attempt at decency and unnecessary formality.
Noodle strolled through the open doorway but quickly turned and leaned against the doorframe. She looked up at the singer and offered him a small smile before speaking.
"Just promise me that you'll tell Russel about this." She spoke in a soft, calming tone. "He can help you." Her smile widened as she fell silent and the singer nodded in agreement. She took a few moments to study his features before speaking again. "Thank you." She grinned.
"For wot?" 2D shrugged his shoulder's, confused by the young woman's humble behaviour.
"For letting me in." A distinct fluttering arose in her chest as he continued to stare intently at her. For a second she could have sworn that the familiarly between them had returned. His presence caused a warmth which she thought had been lost along with her childhood. However the innocence and strength of their bond had faded, there was something else there now, pulling her back to reality. It wasn't a negative feeling though; it was just unknown, unexplored.
The intensity of black, glossy eyes caused her to advert her glance downward as a mild blushed flushed her pale skin. 2D took the momentary lapse as an opportunity to express his gratitude by leaning down to place a light kiss on her forehead. A miscalculation of unfortunate timing caused Noodle to lift her head to address the vocalist again. A mild yet harsh collision occurred as their lips met for a fraction of a second as 2D's innocent gesture of affection soon turned back on itself. Before the accident could even be fully registered by either of them he quickly jolted his head back to create a safe distance between them.
The genuine apology came on impulse, he was used to apologising for his inappropriate behaviour recently and it had developed into something of a habit.
"-Don't apologise." She quickly cut him off. Her voice was unusually low and gruff; a strange weakness within her was talking over, controlling her actions. Her main prerogative was to cure 2D from his illness, guide him out of the darkness. However there was this underline reasoning for her willingness to be so close to him. Every encounter fuelled her desire to explore their relationship. To test the boundaries and limits. Long ago he had made a promise to love her forever, but this was something else, a different kind of love. Maybe she was just falling into lust; after all she never had anything to compare it to.
So Noodle made the bold move to remain in the singer's doorway motionless peering up at him through jade orbs. However, her eye contact with him was no longer reminiscent of the innocent, smitten glances that they used to share. Instead her eyes carried the essence of seduction. She curled her lips into a small smile leaning her petite form further into the doorframe.
It took longer than necessary for the confused singer to piece the situation together and fully understand the guitarist's intentions. He had witness such behaviour from Noodle before. Once when he walked in on her in the bathroom; and again during their infamous encounter in the recording studio. However, her seduction attempts had previously stirred the darkness within him and caused his behaviour to become out of control and unpredictable. It frustrated him to a great degree that the young woman seemed to act as both his antidote and his poison.
Yet this time as the troubled vocalist peered down at the guitarist, the darkness within him remained contained. There were no voices, no hallucinations and no pain building within his head. There was just a willingness controlling him now, accompanied by a curiosity and a deep routed desire. He had to admit that he was undeniably drawn to Noodle. Since her return, his fixation with her had grown immensely, yet previously he had ignored the longing for her which had caused his heart to ache. He had been frightened that he would loose control and end up causing her serious harm. But there was no barrier now, no reason to walk away.
Large hands gripped tightly to small shoulders as the young woman was suddenly pulled from her position in the doorway and pushed back into the adjacent wall. A small gasp of surprise escaped the guitarist's lips as green eyes once again met with black. Noodle initially felt threatened, she had witnessed before how 2D's behaviour could change in an instant and she had been at his mercy on occasions before and been lucky enough to get out unharmed. She knew too well that his overpowering frame would prove too much for her, even if she was designed to kill.
But the cold, intimidating stare, which seemed to consume the singer whenever he fell victim to a violent episode, was no longer occupying his dark eyes. Instead there was the familiar sadness within them which caused his whole expression to soften. Noodle knew that he was himself. He knew what he was doing, he was in control. The lanky vocalist continued to push forward so that the space between the two was almost non existent. Noodle's back came in full contact with the cold wall behind her. She could feel the contrast of the cool, hard structure on her back and the warm pressure of 2D pressed against her chest. She was sure that he was close enough to be able to feel her rapid heartbeat through the thin material of both of their clothing.
Noodle's breathing became heavy and laboured. She could hardly regain control of her limbs after 2D's actions. He had acted purely on impulse and now appeared to have no idea what his motives were. He slowly removed his hands from the guitarist's upper arms and placed them back at his sides. He took a delayed breath and began to shift away from her, preparing to apologise yet again for his breach of her personal space. He was stupid to even think for one second that he could let his libido take over. For God's sake, this was Noodle! He didn't deserve such a privilege as to lay his hands on her and mark her as his own. He was destined to fuck up everything in his life. He couldn't let Noodle be a part of that. The vocalist turned his head away from the young woman.
Small, delicate hands took him by surprise. The guitarist decided to take matters into her own hands as she registered the doubt laced in the singer's expression. She instantly knew that he was trapped in yet another train of thought, dishing out his daily dose of self loathing. When would he finally realise that Noodle made this decision on her own? When would he finally realise that she wanted this, she wanted him. If she would have ever doubted her decision, she would have walked away a long time ago.
When his lanky frame was finally turned back to her, he refused to gain her eye contact again. Instead his focus unintentionally skimmed over her body. He couldn't help but be baffled at how beautiful she had become, yet be so disgusted with himself for even thinking such things. His eye line slowly travelled up to her face. Her hands still lingered on his shoulders; her grip on him was soft yet persistent, just like Noodle.
The overwhelmed singer raised his eyebrows slightly at the young woman's drastic use of initiative. She granted him a minuscule nod of her head as a form of conformation before tightening her grip and pulling him down to her, closing the unwelcome distance between them.
Noodle used more force than was necessary and as a result, the first contact of their lips was rougher that expected. The young woman's eyes fluttered shut as she began to lose herself fulfilling a dormant urge which she hadn't known existed. It took only a few moments for the singer to respond, his experience soon took over. Skilful hands occupied themselves by trailing down her body before eventually resting at her hips. If this were any other girl, they would probably be exploring the bare skin beneath the cotton of her top, but this wasn't anybody.
The guitarist, aggravated by the distance their height caused, took it on herself to use the wall behind her and 2D's torso as leverage as she pushed her body up only to fall deeper into the kiss. She felt a low, surprised grunt escape the singer and vibrate along her lips. He responded by lifting her petite frame a few inches from the floor carrying half of her weight and letting the sturdy structure behind her support the rest. Noodle occupied her own hands by reaching up and gliding her fingers through blue hair. Still not satisfied with their closeness, the young woman aimed to close whatever little gap of vacant space rested between them.
But in one measly second, it was gone.
The warmth and alluring comfort which 2D's body had offered her was suddenly replaced by an unusually cold sting of air. Her feet had been hastily dropped back to the ground as she stumbled a little whilst getting used to supporting her own weight again. She felt light headed and slightly woozy, maybe from the rush of blood through her body. Her eyes remained closed; she was too frightened to open them. Maybe she had been dreaming, it seemed the most plausible explanation to come to her in her fragile state of mind. However, there was not the silence which she expected to be greeted by.
There was a distinct, heavy sound of…wheezing?
Green eyes shot open to quickly capture the form of 2D a few feet ahead of her. He was bent over, desperately clutching at his chest; his usually docile expression was now twisted in a haunting display of agony. He continued to wheeze and splutter whilst his breathing remained laboured and weak. The vocalist managed to lift his head up in Noodle's direction long enough to attempt to throw a reassuring grin in her direction to relieve the panicked expression on her face.
"No…strenuous…movements" He gasped, quoting Russel's advice.
"Oh" A quick flush of red rushed to Noodle's cheeks as she let out a small, embarrassed giggle whist moving away from the wall and offering her help to the struggling singer. She reached out with delicate hands and helped to steady him into a stable standing position. The simple sensation of touching him again caused her to become flustered. Noodle smiled sweetly up at him.
The hum and ping of the lift arriving on the floor was enough to cause the air to grown cold. As on impulse, the guitarist swiftly backed away from the singer and smoothed down her appearance in a panicked hurry and 2D followed suit. She instantly felt child-like again, as if she had been caught with her hand in the cookie jar.
It was only down to Murdoc Niccals who bombarded the atmosphere of the moment as he stampeded into the master bedroom with all the finesse of a gazelle on fire. His movements were unstable and disjoined. He also carried the strong essence of stale liquor along with him. Thankfully he had managed to partly dress himself since his midday siesta on the coastline. Though, in true Murdoc fashion, he had conveniently forgotten to put on a shirt. The Satanist was preparing to launch as slurring attack of profanity onto the singer before his mismatched eyes fell upon Noodle. He blinked at her, his mouth already open, yet nothing audible escaping from it.
"Alright love? Why yer so red on yer…face?" He drunkenly slurred in the young woman's direction before belching out a disgusting odour reminiscent of vomit.
"Pardon my rudeness." He continued in an aristocratic impersonation. The bassist then turned his attention to 2D and spoke again in his mock voice. "Lady Blue, one was wondering if one would tell one the whereabouts of one's rum."
"Erm…"The baffled singer blinked at him, unsure of an appropriate response.
"Where's me stash yer git? I left it in 'ere!" Murdoc's mock formality instantly disappeared to reveal the angered older man drunkenly slurring and pointing a green finger in the vocalist's direction.
"Muds! I told ya not ta come up here!" Russel's deep voice echoed from just outside the bedroom door as his large frame became visible to the rest of the band. He continued to scold the bassist whilst catching his breath. "'D needs ta rest, yo shouldn't be-" He abruptly stopped as his white eyes caught sight of the young Japanese guitarist. "Baby-girl?"
Noodle offered a timid smile whilst silently hoping that the blush on her cheeks had subsided. She nonchalantly tilted her head to one side and continued to smile at the drummer. "Russel-sama?" She questioned in the same tone which he had addressed her.
"What chew doin here Noodle-girl?" Russel questioned with both curiosity and suspicion.
"What are you doing here Russel-sama?" Noodle innocently asked, hoping her playful mannerisms would advert Russel's focus and suspicion elsewhere. She slowly turned her head back in 2D's direction. He was staring blankly ahead, his facial expression had once again returned to the docile, vacant norm as he silently began to piece together the surreal events of the day in his head.
Russel cleared his throat to gain Noodle's attention before addressing her. "Actually, I came here to see 'D." The vocalist appeared to return to reality and gave the drummer a questioning glance. "I need ta talk to him." The drummer recited in an unintentionally intimidating fashion.
"Good Russ, cause I need ta 'ave a word wiv yew." 2D offered the percussionist a toothless, carefree grin. He remembered his promise to Noodle earlier, to reveal to Russel the true extent of his illness and tell him about the hallucinations. The young woman smiled to herself.
Noodle then turned to glance at Murdoc, who was glaring back and forth between the guitarist and singer adopting a sleuth-like mindset. She finally caught the bassist's mismatched glare and nodded her head in the direction of the doorway. Russel's statement was clearly an invitation for the both of them to leave. The Satanist shrugged as he made an unstable route to the doorway, staggering due to the intolerable level of alcohol currently running through his system.
"I'll be back for me booze." He slurred before disappearing through the doorway. Noodle focused her attention on the floor as she hastily scampered towards the hallway. As she reached the doorframe she halted and skimmed her eyes up to catch 2D's line of vision. A strange epiphany-like feeling washed over her as she turned to him.
She had been wrong in her actions that day. 2D, her best friend, was not well and she had taken advantage of him and his vulnerable state. Noodle was supposed to act as his strength, his support, yet she had succumbed to her own selfish weakness and acted out of order. She could never slip up like that again, never. All she seemed to be doing lately was exacerbating his problems, causing him more strain where it wasn't needed. Noodle had to be strong, she had to stop herself.
As she offered him one last smile before she left, her lips curled into the appropriate action, yet her eyes remained hollow. She held her contained sadness in them as she gazed longingly at someone she could never have.
"I saw that." Murdoc mumbled in a pessimistic yet all-knowing manor as he brushed passed her shoulder and continued to stride towards the secure metal doors of the lift.
A/N: Why can't I ever end a chapter on a positive note? Gah!
Anyways, i gave you some 2DxNoodle as promised...so...
Can i have some more lovely reviews please? :D