Chapter One

It's the way I'm wired baby

It was a split second decision that would have serious repercussions.

Roxas had stolen his favourite green and black checked shirt off Zexion's floor. It was the one his best friend refused to lend him, preferring to hold it to ransom to get him to be a guinea pig for strange experiments that usually went wrong.

Demyx, his other best friend and Zexion's much more cheerful other half thought it was funny. But, Roxas knew for a fact that he was partial to the pair of skinny leg jeans with ghosted flames up the side that hung in Zexion's closet and that he would never let his boyfriend know this for fear of being used in the same way.

It was the kind of shirt that could make him feel pretty confident, even on a bad everything day. Totally work the risk.

Right now though it looked like it had gone through a hedge backwards. His brothers' fault for making him late, forcing him to have to take the only means of transport available. It was stupid to try to rollerblade when stopping techniques were such a distant memory. The bruise forming on his left temple, painful if temporary evidence of his stupidity.

Back to the shirt, that was covered in dirt and leaves. It was teamed with low slung black jeans and a black t-shirt finished off with beaten up green converse.

The aforementioned hated rollerblades tied to the side of his rucksack, bounced off each other when he moved.

He shuffled through the door into the garage reception area. There was no-one behind the desk which was nothing but a piece of formica counter top on two filing cabinets. Clipboards and pens were scattered on the surface, piles of paper in neat stacks.

Roxas waited, drumming out a rhythm on the counter top that he'd heard on the radio that morning. No-one turned up after 10 minutes, so he wandered around to find Yuffie who had recommended the Lionheart garage to him in the first place for his car's yearly overhaul. He'd known Yuffie since his first year at high school when she had saved him from a rampant senior on his first day. They'd had a thing for a few months, which ended amicably.

He waited in the corner, trying not to get in the way of the mechanics or anyone at all. Burning brake rubber and oil made his throat burn every time he took a breath. Mournful cries of a miss-fuelled motorbike echoed around the room.

He couldn't find her, but found someone else and was instantly glad he'd stolen that shirt.

The guy was shoulder deep in a car engine. A grey oil splattered vest and grease stained blue jeans were combined with a red lumberjack shirt that hung limply on his hips.

He straightened up as he took his head out from under the bonnet. The thing Roxas noticed more that his height was his bright red hair. His heart started beating to the rhythm of his brother's feet after eating too many Skittles

"Work dammit"

The redhead snarled at the inanimate object and wiped the back of his hand across his forehead

He wasn't traditionally handsome. That word implied in his mind the fairytale hero, stocky with a chizzled jaw and hair that looked like it had had a comb run through it more than once a month.

He wasn't pretty either. The word conjured up girly and young and he certainly wasn't any of those.

Striking. That was the right word. He was the kind of guy that if you passed him in the street would make you look twice and by his body language he knew it.

Roxas took a deep breath and slowly breathed it out.

"Leon" the mechanic bellowed "Chuck me that wrench"

He couldn't see this Leon from his place in the shadows. He just felt sorry for the person getting the verbal.

"Not that one. The big one." The redhead snapped

"Snarky" a female voice tutted from behind him "you broke that one trying to fix the boiler the other day"

Finally, someone he recognised.

"What are you doing back Yuff?"

"A race this afternoon. Have to fix my bike"

"Do you want a hand?"

"Not one of yours" She snapped

Roxas heard the sound of metal screeching across the concrete, enough to make the hairs stand up on the back of his neck.

"Just picking up my junk"

Yuffie's voice was muffled and coupled with heavy breathing. The door opened behind him and the cold air blew at the back of his legs.

"Oh, hey Rox."

Someone has finally noticed the 17 year old, who was wishing that his heart would stop beating so fast.

The door slammed behind him.

The redhead turned swiftly and grinned. He had an oil streak across his forehead and the most hypnotic green eyes. Great, now he sounded like a love struck 12 year old girl.

"This yours?" He said indicating to the mass of rust that he'd been working on.

Roxas put on the most indignant face he could. The mechanic grinned even wider.

"It's a piece of shit. Even an Axel special can't fix it"

"A thump from a wrench" shouted the voice from the back room

"Shut it Leon" The redhead shouted back, before looking back at the blonde sheepishly, his hands clasped around the back of his head.

Even his name went with the job. Probably a nickname, not that Roxas really cared what his real name was.

A nice, if irritating distraction.

They stood in silence for a few seconds.

"Mines over there" Roxas said.

He pointed to the red mini in the corner, his favourite colour.

"Rox right?"

He must have been doing the thinking face that Sora always laughed at, Axel was grinning again and that was really beginning to annoy him.

"It's Roxas" He snapped. The grin faded slightly, he hadn't meant to be that aggressive "Only my friends call me that" he said as an afterthought as the redhead looked slightly hurt.

"I could be your friend" He leered, instantly back on form.

Roxas grimaced, and decided at that the guy was a weirdo. Sleaze didn't work on him. Bad boy, yes. Perv, no.

"This is mine" He said, hoping to distract the mechanic by changing the subject.

Roxas walked slowly around his pride and joy, noticing that the rust spot on the driver's side rear bumper had gone

"Yuff sorted that for you." Axel said, noticing his surprise. "Good with bodywork if you know that I mean."

The redhead waggled his eyebrows at him, his stomach lurched in disgust. Roxas ignored him the best he could, walked slowly around the car and opened the rear door, taking the opportunity to throw his bag and blades onto the back seat. They landed in a heap in the footwell behind the driver's seat.

The door no longer creaked and protested when it closed, it even smelt nice. He got into the drivers seat and put his seatbelt on.

He was sure that Sora wouldn't mind him driving him to work anymore. Not that his brother had any right to complain, he'd tried to pass his test no less than seven times. Personally, he thought that Sora failed on purpose so he could spend more time with Riku his driving instructor. He venomously denied this of course. Unfortunately, it was his twinly obligation to transport him everywhere. Sor owed him big time.

Roxas passed a couple of hundred bucks to the smirking man through the open window, turned the key in the ignition and pulled off. The sun reflected off the dashboard and practically blinded him in one eye. He opened the sun visor and a piece of paper floated onto his lap.

After a couple of miles, he pulled over.

The paper was smooth and flimsy. Nothing special. He turned it over and rolled his eyes at the black marker pen scrawl.

Axel 207-58-3942.

"Asshole" He said to the paper, even though the paper itself had done nothing wrong.

He let the paper float down and settle in the passenger foot well, but the note made him smile; no-one had ever done that for him before.