Summary: The bullying that has haunted Roxas for years just became worse. After enduring a very tough break-up with Hayner, the whole school *mysteriously* finds out that he's gay. Will Axel be able to stop Roxas from harming himself when things just get too much to take? Akuroku. Warning: Involves physical/sexual abuse.

Disclaimer: I own nothing but the storyline!

I had expected a brief rush of air, a sudden intense pain in my entire body, and then... nothing. What I hadn't expected was an extremely short fall, a sudden, searing pain in my shoulder, and then...

"I love you too, now get your ass back up here."

I looked up to see a dirty, teary-eyed Axel leaning over the ledge and clutching my arm in a death grip. I was so shocked, confused, and absolutely ecstatic about his presence that I was unable to react.

"Roxas..." Axel said with a slight strain in his voice. "Roxas, give me your other hand."

I obeyed without question, helping him drag me back onto the ledge. The moment I was safely up, he pulled me into a crushing embrace. Everything went black around us for a split second as he opened a portal to take us to the ground. Then he started to cry, almost as fiercely as me when I broke down not long ago.

My mind was lost and I couldn't comprehend anything that was going on at the moment, so I asked, "Am I dead?"

Axel pulled back to look me in the eyes and said, "No you're not dead."

"Then..." I said, still puzzled, "Then you're a ghost?"

"Roxas, I'm not dead either," he said with a bit of bleak amusement in his voice.

"But..." I said, not wanting to believe that Axel was really here and get my hopes up again. "You were shot."

He pulled the neck of his t-shirt down, showing me the ghastly wound on his shoulder, and said, "I'm lucky Xigbar likes me enough to miss."

"The ceiling fell on you, though." My hopes were now beginning to rise against my better judgment, just asking to be crushed again.

"It almost did," he replied, his eyes going wide for a moment. "One of the smaller bits hit me in the head. Knocked me clean out and left me with one hell of a bump."

My heart was racing at this point. It was too good to be true. "But..." I said, trying to dispel the cruel delusion once and for all, "...the fire."

"Roxas..." Axel breathed, shaking his head. He looked me straight in the eyes and asked, "Do you really believe that I can die in a fire?"

I scanned his face, letting all the truth and emotion I saw there wash over me and bring me to one, sharp realization. I could barely control my movements then. I literally tackled him, burying my face in his neck. "You're alive," I said through my heaving sobs. "Axel... You're really alive."

"Of course I am," he said, pulling me closer. "You can't get rid of me that easily."

"I don't want to," I replied with a sniffle. "I thought I'd lost you."

Axel paused for a moment, then said, "Please don't scare me like that again." He ran his fingers through my hair and continued, "When I caught up with Demyx and he said... he had left you alone..." I felt his breathing become unsteady and I could clearly hear the pain in his voice. "I saw that he was surprised to see me and when he explained... I could only imagine what you must have been thinking... what you were feeling. Then you weren't there when I came looking for you and I..." He took a shaky breath and I felt his tears fall onto my face. "I didn't know if I'd ever see you alive again.

"When I saw you up there, I was so relieved. But then I realized what you were about to do and... when you jumped, I didn't know if I could reach you in time. I thought I was too late." His voice diminished to a whisper as he stopped speaking.

I took a deep breath and said, "I'm sorry, Axel. I'm so sorry."

"It's not your fault," he said, smiling at me. "You're alive. Everything else doesn't matter right now."

Then came the last voice I wanted to hear, "Oh, I beg to differ."

Axel sighed and asked, "Didn't I kill you?"

"Hm," Xemnas said with that disturbing smirk of his. "Pathetic attempt."

"Whatever," Axel said, waving off his words. "Go away."

"'Go away'," Xemnas repeated. "You single-handedly slaughtered more than half of the Organization, destroyed our home and our livelihood, attempted to murder me, kidnapped a prisoner, among other grievous misdeeds, and you think you can tell me to just... 'go away'?"

"Uh huh," he replied halfheartedly. "You're disturbing our moment, here. Shoo, scram, skedaddle, get lost, fuck off, make tracks, go to hell, and otherwise go away."

Xemnas looked more than ready to explode at that moment and I was getting slightly nervous, so I said, "Uh... Axel... maybe you should..."

"No," he said, more to Xemnas than me. He stood up and faced our former overlord, never once letting go of me in the process. "I'm sick of this. I'm so sick of having to bow to his every command like some kind of circus freak. I'm sick of of having to wake up every day knowing that someone else controls my life. My very existence seems to have been under his control since it's beginning. Well, no more. I'm not taking any more orders from you!" At this point, I could feel fire in his fingertips as he continued, now talking directly to Xemnas, "I'm sick of you thinking you can control our lives, I'm sick of seeing your goddamn face every day but most of all, I'm sick of you hurting the only person I really love in this world just so you can have a fucking laugh!"

Axel stepped in front of me, his Eternal Flames appearing in his hands. I suddenly noticed Zexion, Demyx and, surprisingly, Marluxia, each with their respective weapons, backing us up.

"If you value your lives, you'd better stand down," Xemnas said, clutching his Ethereal Blades.

"Oh yeah?" Demyx asked. "You can't take all of us, and you don't have anyone else to run to!"

"I don't have to run," Xemnas said with a chuckle. "True, the five of you could eventually defeat me, but who would pay the price for that victory? You know that, even if all of you teemed up against me, at least one of you would die. Would you risk it?"

"Enough talk!" I shouted, summoning my keyblades, Oathkeeper and Oblivion. It felt good to finally use them in battle again. I ran forward, blades ready for bloodshed. I tensed, ready to block as Xemnas raised his hands.

"No!" I heard Axel yell as a blade zipped by my head, missing me by inches.

I was about to tell Xemnas he needed to work on his aim until I heard Demyx scream. I turned, wide-eyed, to see him crouched over, holding a bleeding Zexion.

"No, please..." he sobbed, his words barely discernible. "No... you can't... no... Zexion!"

"De..." Zexion tried to say, choking on the word, an ever-expanding pool of blood forming beneath him. "Demyx... I..." More blood soaked his lips as he coughed.

"Shh..." Demyx said, stroking the side of Zexion's face. "You shouldn't talk."

"No... I..." Zexion winced, but continued, "I have to... t-tell you..."

"Stop trying to talk!" Demyx said, his voice breaking. Dark tendrils were beginning to form on Zexion, burning him away piece by piece. "No..." Demyx said, a tear sliding down his cheek. "No, Zexion, no," he said as he touched his forehead to Zexion's.

"I love you," Zexion said as he looked into Demyx's eyes, smiled, and was no more.

Demyx fell forward onto his hands, his tears falling onto the ground, mixing with Zexion's blood. I saw him clench his fist around the blade that had pierced Zexion's heart. What happened after that wasn't so clear. All I know is that Demyx leaped up and, almost in the blink of an eye, was toe-to-toe with Xemnas. It took me a moment to realize that the blade that had previously been on the ground was now lodged in Xemnas' abdomen.

A moment later, Demyx was stumbling backward, clutching his chest. He looked... almost at peace. Xemnas, on the other hand, looked infuriated. He was staggering toward Demyx, a look of death on his face. I dropped my keyblades, to shocked to hold onto them any longer, and scurried to Demyx's side. Axel followed.

"Demyx!" I said, kneeling beside him. His wound didn't look as bad as Zexion's had, or even as bad as Xemnas' (who was now almost collapsed). He might have been able to pull through.

"At least..." he whispered, tears still filling his eyes, "I'm going too." He looked up at Axel and said, "Finish me."

"What?" Axel asked, taken aback when Demyx lifted his hand, chakram and all, and put it to his chest.

"Please," Demyx begged. "Axel... I want to be with him. Please, kill me."

Axel's eyes searched Demyx's for a moment, then he closed them and nodded.

"Thank you," Demyx whispered, closing his eyes as well.

"Axel?" I asked, looking from him to Demyx.

"Turn away, Roxas," he whispered, never taking his eyes off of Demyx.

"Wait," I said, reaching out to him.

"I don't want you to see this," he said.

"Roxas..." Demyx said, looking me straight in the eye. "It's what I want... what I need. You understand?"

I nodded, blinking tears away. I did understand, probably more than anyone else. There just... wasn't any reason for him to go on. After all, he was already dead inside. "Goodbye, Demyx," I said, turning and walking away from them. I heard Axel say something to Demyx, and then the sickening sound of metal slicing flesh. I waited until I heard Demyx ultimately fade before turning around, too shocked for tears.

"Axel?" I asked, reaching out for him. He was standing now.

"Guys," Marluxia said, drawing my attention. I had almost forgotten he was there. He gestured to Xemnas with his scythe. "He's not dead. What do we do with him?"

I went over, joining Marluxia next to Xemnas' now unconscious form. Axel stayed as he was. I looked down at the man I held so much hate for. It would have been so easy to summon my keyblade and deal the final blow, but I didn't want to see another death tonight.

"The wound is fatal," I said, gesturing to where Demyx had stabbed him. "Just leave him."

He nodded and said, "Then... I guess I'll leave you two alone. I wanted to track down Xigbar and Luxord anyway."

"Okay," I whispered.

"See ya," he said, opening a portal and stepping through it.

I exhaled slowly and turned to Axel. He was still staring down at the small blood stain where Demyx had fallen. I had no idea as to the thoughts that were currently swirling around in his head. I was sad and upset that our friends had died, but Axel... having been the one to strike the final blow... It would definitely leave him scarred.

"What can I do?" I asked.

He shook his head, looked up at me, and said, "I don't know." He exhaled and said, "You know... the last thing I said to him before... this..." He sighed, running his fingers through his hair. "I just wish I could take it back... tell him how grateful I am for getting you out of the castle."

"I'm sure he knew that," I said, trying to force a smile.

"I know but..." he said, looking back at me. His eyes went wide, then hostile. "Roxas!" he said, his chakrams appearing in a fiery burst.

Before I even had time to ask what was wrong, a strong hand was holding my hands behind me and a knife was to my throat.

"Never turn your back on an enemy that isn't dead," Xemnas hissed into my ear.

"I'll have to remember that next time," I spat, trying to struggle loose, which only caused the knife at my throat to bite into my flesh, causing a thin line of blood to appear.

"You let him go, Xemnas," Axel warned, his chakrams raised.

"Why?" he asked. "So you can finish me off? I don't think so."

"Okay," Axel said, his weapons vanishing. He raised his hands and said, "I'm unarmed. Now, let him go. I promise, if you do, you'll get out of here alive."

"I don't trust you," Xemnas said, wincing a bit, but never faltering. "I'm weakened just enough for both of you to be a lethal threat. Right now, he's the only thing standing between me and my potential demise."

"We're talking about Roxas," Axel said, a frantic edge to his voice. "You know what I'll do when it comes to him."

"Very much," he said with a smile. "Nevertheless, leaving with him is the only way I can guarantee I'll also leave with my life." He paused, then added, "And maybe... I just want the satisfaction of knowing that you know he's with me, that I have him restrained, and that, once my wound heals, I could be doing absolutely anything to him." He lifted the knife from my neck and caressed my cheek with the blunt edge. "And every day he's with me is another day you'll be asking yourself if he's dead or alive."

Axel glared at Xemnas, his entire form shaking, and asked, "Can I say goodbye to him?"

"Be my guest," he said, returning the knife to my throat and tightening his grip on my hands.

Axel walked cautiously towards us, making sure Xemnas saw everything he was doing, until he stood only inches away from me.

"I'm sorry, Roxas," he said, wrapping his arms around me, ignoring Xemnas altogether. I felt him slip something into my back pocket just before he pressed his lips to mine. Hopefully, Xemnas didn't notice. That was basically the last rational thought I had before I lost myself in Axel's kiss. Though it was frantic, and rushed, it was one of the best. It was filled with so much emotion, so much that words could never say. Neither of us knew if it would be our last, but both of us were determined for it not to be.

Axel broke the kiss, but didn't step away. "I'll find you," he said. "I promise. And when I do... whatever he's done to you, I'll make him suffer a thousand times over." Xemnas scoffed, but neither of us payed him any attention.

"Promise?" I asked.

He nodded and said, "Even if he drags you to the end of the world, I'll always be there to bring you back."

"I love you," I said to him, watching his image fade as darkness closed around me.

A/N: First of all, I'm sorry for the delay. I would have had this up last week, but the screen on my laptop decided it would be fun to crack down the middle, so I had to get it replaced. Second, I know you were probably expected a "happy ending." Believe me, so was I. After Axel's rant, I was so tempted to write, "Epic battle ensues, Xemnas dies, and everyone goes home happy. The end." However, one of my friends who proofread the original monstrosity said, "Well you could end it such and such a way." I liked it how I had it originally, though, and would have submitted it that way had my laptop not failed me. Then, over the week it was being fixed, I got to thinking about what my friend had said, and I kind of ran her ending and my ending together and came up with THAT ^^ ! There may or may not be a sequel. I'll leave it up to you. (So review... or you won't get one! jk i luv uuus!) I'm still planning on writing this in Axel's POV, but that might be put on hold for potential sequel. Thanks for being so supportive. I love you and thank you all. Thanks for reading. Please review! :)

P.S. I cried so hard writing this chapter.