Tales from Waverly Place

A Wizards of Waverly Place Fanfiction

Chapter: The Balance of Things
Author: funvince
Genre: Family/Friendship
Summary: Alex wins the Wizard Competition. Again.
Spoilers: Post-Series
Note 1: There are many stories where Alex and Justin both forfeit the Wizard Competition because they don't want to keep their powers at the expense of the other. Those are sweet, but I think a more interesting outcome should be explored.
Note 2: None of these oneshots will be Jalex. While I occasionally like to read a well-written Jalex fanfic, I feel there is a need for more stories where Alex and Justin have a close relationship but don't feel the need to make out with each other.

Max swore he would hate them forever if they let him win.

Justin and Alex shared an amused look. Like they were just going to let their chance for a rematch disappear. They had made a promise on a Puerto Rican beach a long time ago to see who the better wizard was, and they were going to keep it.

Professor Crumbs had once told them that they brought out the best in each other. Justin had told Alex that constantly having to get her out of trouble made him a better wizard. It was hard to imagine that after today that only one of them would get to keep his or her powers.

He couldn't imagine Alex without her magic even though it used to irritate him how naturally talented she was at using it. She hardly paid any attention in their wizarding lessons and she couldn't care less about magical theory, but when it came to practical application she was a genius. It was just too bad that she had no sense concerning when using magic might be a horrible and awful idea. Those were often the times that he would have to step in.

Because if she was the master of creating mischief, he was the expert in unraveling it. It was an aggravating, frustrating, and often thankless job. And he would never, ever admit it to her but it was also a lot of fun. That was why he often allowed Alex to run off with her crazy ideas even when he knew no good could come from them. He had to see what would happen.

Curiosity had always been a great weakness of his.

Like the scientist he prided himself on being, he studied magic. She lived it. He rarely used his powers without a lot of forethought and preparation. She used hers on a whim. Maybe that was why the results of her magic tended to be both amazing and headache-inducing. Trial and error was an inherently messy process, and Alex was great at making messes.

He wanted his magic to be structured and orderly, but she didn't care about any of that. She was chaotic, unruly, and unpredictable.

Just like magic.

Sometimes, he wished they could all keep their powers, but he didn't make the rules.

Everyone thought of him as the perfect son and the perfect student, and it was something of a burden having to meet those high expectations. Alex, on the other hand, did whatever she pleased and didn't care what anyone thought. She could be shockingly callous but she could also be amazingly kind. She was a free spirit not bound by anyone's rules but her own.

Justin had always envied that about his sister.

They had very different philosophies on life, the two of them. And in a way, they had been competing against each other their entire lives over the question of which was superior: order or chaos.

They certainly weren't competing as to who was the better student!

When Professor Crumbs had been about to take Alex's powers away for turning her parents into guinea pigs, Justin had acted impulsively for one of the few times in his life and turned the older wizard into a guinea pig. Things had turned out okay in the end, but it had still been a stupid move. One he would do again in a heartbeat.

Because he was her rival and her older brother and there was no way Alex was going to lose her powers to anyone but him.

Alex had beaten him the first time they had the Wizard Competition and not by cheating. She had known far fewer spells than him but she won fair and square. She had won the title of family wizard and all the powers that came with it. She had the ability to reverse the effects of her disastrous wish and keep her newfound powers. She could have had her cake and ate it too.

Instead, she turned back time and put everything back the way it was, which included her powers as a full wizard. When Justin asked her why she would do something like that, she said it had been her fault that they had been forced to hold the battle years ahead of schedule in the first place, and it wasn't fair to Max who had been unable to attend as he had been wiped out of existence at the time. They would have a do-over in the future the right way.

Justin didn't think he could have been that selfless and he was ashamed of that. But he couldn't have been prouder of her.

So knowing what she sacrificed, he would fight it out today with everything he had. Because to do otherwise would be an insult to her. And he had to know if she could pull it off again.

She did.

It was finally over. His years of effort and study had all been for this day, and this was the result. It had been a hard-fought battle and it was one he would always remember. Max actually managed to put in a good showing. He felt bad that he was surprised by that, and he silently promised to make it up to his brother later, but right now he was staring at Alex who was laughing in sheer delight and literally glowing with a golden light.

When she won again he thought it would hurt. And it did a little but not as much as he thought it would. Was it because, unlike the first time, he was prepared for the possibility of losing? Was it because he had realized a long time ago that while magic was fun to have it wasn't the most important thing in his life? He didn't know. What he did know was that he had given everything he had in this fight and he was satisfied with that.

He suddenly noticed Alex looking at him. She wasn't smiling. The glow around her had faded. She walked toward him until she was only a few feet away and then she stopped. The question in her eyes was clear.

Are we okay?

He smiled and gave a slight nod.

Her face broke out into a smile even brighter and wider than the one she wore just a few moments before, and before he knew it she had tackled both him and Max to the ground with a hug.

He supposed that she didn't need him to look out for her anymore.

He was wrong.

It was two weeks after the competition. Alex insisted it wasn't her fault. She always did. He would take the time to prove out that this was her fault (with graphs and flowcharts, if necessary) after he figured out a way to transport them out of Ancient Rome (and away from the pursuing gladiators) and back to their own time.

It was funny that even though he did not have his powers any longer he still spent a great deal of time researching arcane spells and obscure wizarding facts to help his sister with her problems.

Justin rapidly flipped through all the transportation and time travel spells he knew. He may not have been as good as Alex in making up spells or 'winging it', but he had a near-encyclopedic knowledge of the five thousand basic wizarding spells. Between the two of them, they should be fine. They had always made a good team.

Alex may have been the family wizard and had all the power that went with it but when it came to getting her out of a jam he was still a wizard - one of the wise. She would always need him to give her restraint, and he would always need her to help him take risks.

That was the balance they had. He had worried that things would change after the competition, but it looked like, at least for the moment, he was still the Order to her Chaos.

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