A/N: Here's my Christmas present to all my lovely watchers, reviewers, and supporters on ! I love you all, and I hope you accept this as your Xmas gift from me. Enjoy~
Particular thanks to the following individuals (in no particular order):
Oh that Macy, shinigamitales, LonelyRealm, Deviltrigger Dante, ColinatorGX, heartsforu, IAmNotASardine, Miyo-chan02, Mangaka Shuzen, RammsteirNails, fictiongurl13553, Kinomoto1995, Seras0Victoria, and shadowers-end. I thank each and every one of you from the very bottom of my heart for taking the time to review my DGM stories, I appreciated every one of your reviews so much! :'D I hope you all have a wonderully superb Xmas!
"REPEAT AFTER ME!"
The intimidating glint of Komui's glasses, the glint that suggested, with merely the tiniest manipulations of light, that if anyone were to break the sacred codex of Maintain Lenalee Lee's Chastity the full fury of hell would unquestionably be released upon them,
Allen and Lavi stood side by side, fear cementing them to the ground; Lenalee's purity was no joking matter, and they intended to appear to support that notion as best they could even beneath Komui's gaze of absolute, undisputed murder.
"I SOMLEMNLY SWEAR—"
"I solemnly swear…"
"—THAT I WILL NOT—"
"That I will not…"
"UNDER ANY CICRUMSTANCES WHATSOEVER—"
"Under any circumstances whatsoever…"
A moment of silence so intense, so incredibly, inexorably, implicitly panic-stricken the nerves entered a dissociative state of temporary comatose, filled the room like eerie carbon monoxide fumes, suffocating Allen and Lavi into a fitful state of motionless, ego-murdering terror.
Komui gave them a hard glare before the spit flew out of his mouth once again. "—KISS LENALEE LEE BENEATH THE MISTLETOE THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON!"
"Kiss Lenalee Lee beneath the mistletoe this Christmas season." Allen and Lavi finished with rough simultaneity, beads of spit freckling their faces as they blinked up at Komui with completely innocent, not-at-all-scheming, rebellion-free eyes. The supervisor merely glared back at them with a look that could've made a Noah turn pale.
As Komui's face morphed into an expression of over-exaggerated depression, Allen could almost picture the collage of fanatical, purity-shattering images he was beginning to fabricate of his precious baby sister, most likely ones that involved her canoodling beneath the mistletoe with a male counterpart rather aggressively. He suppressed a shiver.
He in no way planned on receiving a death penalty for Christmas this year. Absolutely positively no way. Allen Walker was going to have a fine Christmas at the Order, one filled with merriment, friendly gift exchanging, and a whole lot of feasting. No spit-swapping. No lip crushing. Just a nice, happy Christmas.
He could already sense the waves of disappointment emanating off of Lavi.
"Do you boys understand?"
"With distinction, Chief!" Lavi fired back his response with far too much enthusiasm, followed by a sharp salute.
The way he had stated his name— no more like hissed it— made Allen feel as if every artery in his body had just been tied up with sparkly red ribbon and shipped off to the bottom of the ocean to rot in crushingly wet isolation.
The thoughts as to why the Order even bothered putting up mistletoe in the first place began to bully the logical portion of Allen's brain; why did they? It wasn't like there was a whole catalogue of girls to choose from at the Order. Wasn't it only natural, manly instinct to secretly, in the very pits of the strictly prohibited portion of the id, even beneath the outer shell of gentlemanly charades and acceptably acceptable lip service… wasn't it only natural to yearn for the soft, lush lips of the nicest looking girl around?
But then it hit him.
Mistletoe was obviously Komui's super sketchy way of revealing just who exactly did have above PG thoughts of Lenalee Lee. And he would no doubt use it as the perfect excuse in vaporizing them from the face of the planet if they were ever caught. There was even rumour that hidden cameras had been stationed near every sprig of the lovey-dovey plant, in order to make absolutely doubly sure that no brushing of the lips ever involved those of the precious, baby Lenalee.
Komui almost seemed scarier than the Earl these days.
"Wonderful to hear boys!" a candy cane had been stuffed unceremoniously into both Lavi and Allen's dumbfounded mouths by a pair of Christmas clad scientists, the minty spear puncturing Allen's tongue with a scraping burst of peppermint. "Now then, off you two young, completely unlecherous and in no way interested in my little sister boys go, go on now, go ravage the halls with your Christmas spirit!"
Komui was now smacking coffee-stained papers against their backs, forcing Allen and Lavi back out into the bustling Order hallways before they could reject otherwise. The sound of the doors closing behind them indicated that the "mistletoe rule" was officially closed for discussion.
Allen wrapped his tongue absently around the candy cane, its smooth, tangy jab of peppermint making his taste buds sweat rather profusely. A rather strange, rather uncomfortable bulge was migrating its way through his stomach, diffusing and spreading its influence to his thoughts and feelings until even they become deliriously confused with their identities. What the hell…?
It was coming to him. That feeling, it felt kind of like…
…kind of like a foreign version of…
"Oh yoohoo, Allen-kun!"
"Whu?" Allen whipped his head to face Lavi, who was giving him an unimpressed shake of the head.
"So you respond to me when I sound like Lenalee, eh? Interesting…"
"That's not true!" Allen could already feel his cheeks tingling awkwardly. "I was simply shocked at hearing you sound so feminine!"
"Oho, that's what they all say Moyashi-chan!" the unnecessary wink accompanying his comment resulted in Allen chomping off the base of his candy cane with an overly vicious crack.
Lavi gave a mocking suck on his candy cane, apparently unaffected by Allen's searing glare.
"Well I got some news that'll make you happy," Lavi commented casually, his hands finding a nice resting place behind his head as he began to walk away. "The kitchen's coined today as 'Christmas Baking Day', so, if we get there early enough…" he turned to face Allen, a look of immature Bookman knowledge twisting his mouth into a cocky grin, "… we get to sample all the reject goodies!"
A firework seemed to go off in Allen's stomach, frying all former feelings of confusion into sizzling crisps of hopelessly forgotten discomforts. He liked homemade sweets. He liked them a lot.
"Yo, so are you coming or not?"
The perfectly timed growling of his stomach answered Lavi's question quite effectively.
The tangy, buttery aroma of spices and powders all fluffily merrymaking in the heat of an oven, the golden scent that made one's taste buds cry of impatience… was not what Allen or Lavi smelt as they entered the dining hall. Instead, they were hit with a rather blunt gush of charred air, one that reeked with the putrid, nose-scratching scent of overcooked pastry quite splendidly.
"The hell…" Lavi flipped his candy cane to the opposite crook of his mouth. "It smells like someone died in here."
Allen's stomach entered a state of mourning for all the delicious sweets that had not made it out of the fiery depths of the oven in one flaky, golden piece. His momentary grief, however, was put on hold as an utterly defeated looking Miranda came trudging towards them.
"Lavi… Allen-kun…." words flopped from her mouth incohesively. "The oven… the oven hates me! It hates me!"
Allen gave a chuckle oozing with fake cheer. "I'm sure it doesn't hate you, Miranda!"
"Yeah, ovens don't even have feelings!" Lavi chipped in, candy cane bobbing up and down in his mouth agreeably.
The look she shot them seemed to blatantly think otherwise.
Pity began to sprinkle its effects on Allen's feelings. "Here Miranda, why don't Lavi and I come and have a look at the, uhm, oven for you?"
He heard Lavi give an unappreciative crunch of his candy cane. "Yeah, we'd love to help."
"Oh, but I couldn't…" Miranda's eyes were lassoed in tears, her frail-looking body shaking in repulsion at the offer.
"No, no, we insist!" Allen offered his hand to the defeated woman at his feet, trying not to cringe when its snot-laced, tear covered exterior accepted it clingingly.
"Thank you, Allen-kun. I-I really don't deserve this…"
"Oh, nonsense!" Allen continued to slowly mend Miranda's negligible self-confidence with his cookie-cutter words of gentlemanly stature, all the while trying to dodge the burnt corpses of cookies and assortment of lifeless, rusty baking sheets littering the floor. The entire dining hall seemed to be fogged over in a grieving veil of smoke, mourning over the heavy casualties of cooking ingredients and usable baking tools lost to the war of Christmas baking.
Eventually Miranda managed to direct Allen towards her cooking station, which was covered in so much batter and baking materials it seemed as if it had contracted some sort of heinous, highly-contagious disease. Every where he looked, batter was present; it was as if the damn shit was mating, reproducing globs of offspring with the speediness expected from a bizarre period of asexual reproduction. His conscience began complimenting him on his stupid gullibility, however, when he felt an egg fracture hideously beneath his foot.
"Here it is."
Trying exceptionally hard not to curse, Allen turned to look at the oven, which he had failed to distinguish amongst the ruins of food that had failed to stay in Miranda's cooking bowls. He could've sworn he heard a faint sizzling sound bubbling from somewhere on top of it…
He hadn't the faintest clue what to do. When it came to cooking, Allen was horrifically talentless. But that was only cooking. Baking, on the other hand… the world, one might say, was in severe danger of being blown up whenever Allen Walker decided it'd be a bloody brilliant idea to try and do some baking.
Nonetheless, Allen gave one hefty glance at what he believed was a cookie recipe (homeless batter had made it quite hard to discern), scooped a few handfuls of the crap smothering every inch of the cooking station into what looked like passable cookie shapes, and flung it into the oven with a nifty flip of a dial.
"There you are Miranda, cookies that are good as new!" Allen laughed as whole-heartedly as he possibly could at that moment, a greasy hand applying batter to his hair as it rubbed the back of his head bashfully.
"I… was making a cake, Allen-kun."
The laughter instantly stopped.
Something sharp was now poking repetitively into his back.
"Psst, Allen! Lookie over here!"
Pivoting around, Allen instantly relocated Lavi's whereabouts; but before he could rip his head off and shove it in an oven for not helping him with Miranda, a most breathtaking, most unbelievably beautiful sight graced his eyes. For a moment, Allen seriously considered if he was hallucinating.
"Allen-kun, I think they're burning!"
Screw it, he wasn't hallucinating.
There, tucked safely behind Lavi's grinning figure was a plate filled with cookies. Fluffy, sugar-kissed cookies. Cookies that looked as if angels had mixed their elegant bliss into every mix and swirl required to make them. Cookies that…. that…. brought tears of hope, tears of happiness that words alone could not possibly describe into Allen Walker's disbelieving eyes. There still was something edible to eat in the dining hall after all! He could almost hear the chants of Hallelujah soundtracking the moment!
"Lavi… is this… is this…"
"Edible?" the apprentice Bookman clinked his candy cane between his teeth, taking the words right out of Allen's now numb mouth. "Damn straight it is!
Eyes fully illuminated, Allen went on a full-blown eating spree, mounds of the light, perfectly baked, perfectly crafted cookies flying into his mouth at a speed nearly too fast for human vision to optically define. He had… he had discovered the meaning to life, oh yes! Perfectly baked cookies were the definition of life, at its finest. Oh sweet mother of millennium, he could eat these all day—
That voice. Had… had angels really come to congratulate him on his new found understanding about life?
"What do you think you are doing to my Christmas baking?"
Yes, oh yes. That perfectly feminine voice, accented with sweetness that could make even a cookie swoon, so pretty and blissful it felt like butterfly kisses attacking the body with their gentle, ticklish caresses… he had to be in heaven. Had to be.
"Lavi, guess what—"
A raging hand slapped him on the cheek, sending five cookies flying out of his mouth and another nearly all the way down his throat.
"Allen Walker do you have any self-control in that immature body of yours?" Lenalee was yelling at him, her eyes like molten violets passionately assaulting people with their bold beauty.
"I think so."
His response was obviously not a very good one, seeing as it earned him yet another slap plus an unnecessary fit of laughter (courtesy of Lavi).
"I worked all morning making those, and now they're…. they're…"
Oh fuck. The tears were coming. The iris barriers of her eyes were shivering, her cheeks tightening into a blushing frenzy of useless self-restraint, her mouth tucking into a tight-lipped line that looked as if the uttering of one mere word would send her into a fit of inconsolable tears… damn, Lenalee had that look down pretty good.
He had one chance to bandage things up. Lavi was giving him a look that suggested he better not mess up or else he'd most certainly be killed. Lenalee was glaring at him with a look that had adopted every ounce of guilt in the world and was now freely dumping it onto Allen. And Miranda…. well, Miranda looked like she was watching someone be murdered. Most likely her cookies.
Dear god, what had Cross always done in these kinda situations?
"God dammit don't make it a question Allen-kun!" Lenalee's eyes were frothing with tears.
"Okay, Lenalee, I'm really really really sorry, honest to God I am!"
For a moment the tears almost looked like they might subside, might not dribble down her flawless white complexion and scar it with their heavy liquid emotion after all…
"It's just they looked really good."
His vocal cords had officially been divorced from his brain; Allen had no idea why he had just said that.
"Oh, you don't say?" Lenalee's voice, despite her face back to normal functioning, was shaking, was giving off the impression of being unstable, of being swept away by sounds much bigger than itself.
He heard an awfully rude snicker come from Lavi's direction.
Caught completely off guard, Allen watched as Lavi's candy cane catapulted out of his mouth and turned into a slobbery mess of splintered peppermint stripes at his feet. "Uh, yes, Lenalee?"
"Go help Miranda."
No one dared say a word.
"As you command, Miss. Lena!"
Allen wished at that moment he could grab hold of Lavi and be dragged along with him. Anything to break the poisonous gaze Lenalee was now stabbing him unrelentingly with. Her gaze was so volatile, so hotly illuminated with contempt, Allen actually wondered for a fleeting second if violets were deadly, man-eating plants that he had untruthfully been told were harmless until that very moment of his soon-to-be-finished life.
Consciously, or perhaps maybe unconsciously, he braced himself for the storm known as female emotions.
"You can help me with the wrapping."
A/N: Well, hope you all enjoyed the first part, minna! I decided for Xmas I'd write something more light and humorous, ya know, something a little more on the sarcastic side (since I rarely do that these days), so hopefully you still liked it And sorry if it's a little OOC (I don't really care to know if it is or not though), I just decided to have fun with this and not be too concerned with perfecting every little aspect, also something that's very rare for me.
OMG 10 DAYS TILL XMAS OMG!
All reviews, faves, and watches are GREATLY appreciated! I will love you forever~
**All characters are property of Katsura Hoshino-sensei**