Desmond yelped and scowled at Shaun.
"Why do I love you?"
"I don't honestly know, you bleeding tart."
He stuck out his tongue and explained the buttons to the two oldest assassins. Altair took the controller unsteadily as the game began. It wasn't long before he realized he was just as bad as Ezio was.
Ezio was surprisingly quiet as they played through the beginning and to the first memory. When Altair first appeared on the screen, he did a double take: it looked exactly like him. Even Malik looked impressed.
"Can they not get anything right?" Ezio screeched. "How can people be so ignorant!"
The five of them turned to look at the doorway, where Leonardo was yawning and rubbing his eyes.
"Ezio, what is the matter? I could hear you screeching on the other side of the building."
Ezio held out his arms like a child who wanted his favorite stuffed animal. Leonardo obliged and walked over, letting him be pulled into Ezio's lap. The assassin kissed his cheek and rested his chin on Leonardo's shoulder, squeezing him tightly. Altair was glad he spoke Italian to the artist as he concentrated on the screen.
"I don't like this man speaking. Who is he?"
"Dr. Warren Vidic," Desmond spat.
"His voice is too soothing to be trusted. And he is cruel."
Malik shook his head, speaking in Arabic. "His very voice gives away his evil intentions."
Altair nodded. "This game… You dealt with this man?"
Desmond nodded. "Yeah."
"Is he dead?"
Before Desmond could respond, Altair shushed him as he cautiously made his way through the tutorial. He narrowed his eyes in concentration as he followed the walkthrough.
"Who is the stupid woman who keeps talking to you?"
Shaun laughed. "That, my dear friend, is Lucy!"
He growled. "She must learn to be quiet if you are to concentrate."
Desmond and Shaun laughed. They watched as he fumbled his way through the beginning. When they saw Kadar for the first time, Altair couldn't help but laugh.
"Malik, they made your brother look like a man."
Malik was petrified, then, with a horrified whisper, "Dear Allah, what have they done to your memory, Kadar?" His hand reached out and lightly touched the screen. Altair watched him closely. After several quiet moments, Malik leaned back. "They have ruined you."
"I told you," Ezio began, "these people cannot get anything right!"
Altair growled. "That old man did not die like that. It was much cleaner. Much less blood. And Kadar did not look quite so manly. His face was much more slender. He was—what was the word?"
"Cuter?" Desmond supplied.
Altair smirked and nodded.
"I know. I wouldn't have minded tapping that if he was alive."
Silence fell over the group, the tension and malice almost thick enough to cut with a dulled butter knife. Malik turned slowly and glared at Desmond. Desmond shivered. "Sorry, Mali—"
Shaun let out a loud, "Oomph! You blinkin' git!" as he fell face-first into the popcorn bowl as he was dropped from Desmond's lap. The poor boy dropped him like a hotcake to run as Malik chased after him. Altair chuckled.
"Even in after death, Malik is still protective. This game is ludicrous."
Ezio growled. "I know! Just look at the way you were made! Your body build is disgusting! They made you look fat—and your clothing! It looks just as uncomfortable as mine! It looks like burlap!"
"Mio amore," Leonardo murmured, nuzzling against Ezio's neck, "not s'loud. 'M sleepy."
Ezio hummed quietly and tightened his grip slightly like a child hugging a beloved teddy bear. "Mi dispiace."
There was a loud yelp and a high-pitched screech, and several moments later, Malik came stomping through, fist clenched as he sat stiffly beside Altair, who wrapped an arm around his shoulders. He was exiting the temple. He managed to run to Al Mualim. His movements were clumsy, and several times, he ran into people or injured himself by pressing the wrong button.
Malik scoffed every time it happened. "I bet I could do better at that than you. You cannot even walk right, novice."
He scowled at the Arab and watched the cutscene. When Malik returned in the game, his arm dangling uselessly by his side and bleeding, Altair paused it, set the controller down, and kicked it away.
His voice was strained. "I do not wish to play. What's passed has passed."
He rose to leave, his face blank and his eyes a bit more pained than they normally were.
Shaun finished picking the last of the popcorn up. "Perhaps you could go find Desmond. Hopefully, I can trust you to bring whatever's left of him back?"
Altair nodded and walked stiffly away. "That sounds good."
There was silence as he walked off. He heard Malik call out for him. He paused.
"Is there something else that we can see? Can we fast forward?"
"I'll play for you," he heard Ezio say, perhaps a bit too eagerly. "Go take your time helping Desmond. Bandage him; coddle him, and fix him up, and by the time you get back, I will be passed it."
A few seconds later, he felt Malik by his side and a hand slip into his. "The past is best left undisturbed sometimes."
Altair said nothing as he squeezed Malik's hand lightly and dipped his head. They walked in silence until they saw Desmond limping toward them. Desmond's eyes grew wide when he saw Malik, and his hands flew to protect his crotch as he staggered to stay on his own two legs.
"'M sorry; I'm sorry; I'm sorry—"
"Do not worry, Desmond: Malik will not hurt you again as long as I'm around."
Desmond looked terrified, and Altair couldn't help but chuckle slightly. "Do not be alarmed: it happened to me when we were still novices."
Desmond winced. "And you still managed to have kids?"
Altair nodded, wearing an amused smile. "I did."
The youngest assassin nodded and limped beside them slowly, on the opposite side of Altair. It was silent for a few minutes.
"At least he still kicks like I remember. Too bad we didn't get to see bad-ass motherfucker Malik in the game," Desmond said.
"Or sarcastic Kadar. The boy had a wit as sharp as Malik's."
"They severely fucked up Kadar."
"They are lucky they started with his death," Malik growled. "Or I would have joined Ezio in his killing spree."
Desmond winced. "More like torture time. I don't think they would've gotten off that easily."
Malik said nothing, but stepped a bit closer to Altair, wrapping their arms together. Altair looked at him and leaned over, kissing his cheek softly.
As they walked back into the room with the Animoose—Animus, Desmond so helpfully corrected—they saw Ezio grinning like a fool as he continued playing.
"Oh yeah! That damn Templar never saw it coming!" He laughed victoriously. His arms were tight around Leonardo, his chin on his shoulder, and Leonardo looked a little upset. "How can he, with the grand master assassin Altair after his ass! Oh-ho! Take that!" He laughed as the screen zoomed in for a counter kill. "Bitch~es, you can stand up to Altair Ibn-La'Ahad! Kiss the fucking ground he walk, assholes!"
Leonardo yawned as the three walked over. Desmond sat down next to Shaun, who placed a hand on his thigh, looking concerned. Altair looked at the screen as they sat down.
"And this from the man who could not play his own character?"
Ezio spared them a glance. "Damnit, you want it back now?"
Altair raised an eyebrow. "No, go ahead, you are playing better than I ever could have."
Ezio had his tongue poking out in concentration as he killed the rest of the Templars.
"I don't see how you got that much better by just switching games," Malik said.
Ezio waved a hand dismissively, looking a little irritated. "It was the game. His clothes and appearance messed up how the game worked."
Shaun tapped his chin. "Perhaps, since this game is so touchy for you, we put in Brotherhood and let you all play in multiplayer mode?"
Ezio: "Will I still get to play as Altair?"
"Then you'll have to pry it from my cold, dead hands."
And thus concludes another short story from me. Is it just me, or does Ezio seem like the kind who'd curse while playing video games? XD
Any suggestions for another story? 'Cause if not, I'll just keep plugging away at filling the kinkmeme... Probably the more humorous ones, as I am so apt to do.