Ta-dah . . . .! The final chapter, yays!
Game Over by Boogermeister
Chapter 28- Beginning, Middle, and End
Two years later . . . .
"Nel . . . . Nel . . . .?" Renji frowned, when he found the director sitting by Ichigo's desk she was pre-occupied by the music she was listening through the headphones. He sighed and shook his head, his crimson hair grew more as his usually spikey ponytail was shaggier. "Yo, what's up with Nel? Is she still mad at me because I purposely touched her hair the other day?" Renji asked Shuuhei, who was standing nearby as he was leaning against the cubicle wall.
"No, she's in her own world that she doesn't know what we're saying to her," the audio maker smirked. "We've been doing it all morning, it's hilarious. Watch . . . . hey Nel, you did a good job shaving off your beard today," he said to Nel, who glanced up at him, as he gestured around his mouth and jawline.
She blinked but mimicked him, assuming that he was talking about a crumb stuck on her face. "Thanks, Shuuhei . . . ." she nodded before looking away. The two idiots chuckled under their breaths before Shuuhei shushed his friend.
"Okay, I got another one . . . . Nel, Nel, how much do you think your boobs weigh?" he asked, gesturing at his wrist.
Nel glanced at him and blinked, again assuming that he was asking about the time as she looked at her watch. "One forty-five," she replied. The guys laughed, and she finally noticed with a light frown. Were they making fun of her again?
"You do it, Renji, come on . . . ." smirked Shuuhei.
"Yeah, okay . . . . Yo, Nel, your breath smells like monkey diapers . . . .!" he boldly said out loud with a laugh.
". . . . I heard that, Renji," Nel frowned with her headphones off, and the programmer blanched in surprise. "What the hell, guys?"
"Sorry, I'm so sorry, Nel . . . .!" stammered Renji, but Nel just shrugged it with a light giggle.
"Anyway, is there something you wanna speak to me, Renji?" she asked.
"Uh, oh right! Guess what I got . . . .!" he smiled, holding out a few magazines that were in his hands. "The latest issue of Game Informer, with whose game on the cover?" he smiled as he held up the first one.
"What? Are you serious, Renji?" smiled Nel as she glanced at the cover. It appeared as an oil painting of a warrior angel, with his outstretched wings darkened to black as he fought hordes of demons in a demolished city. "Oh my goodness, Ichigo's game is on this issue's cover? I can't believe this . . . .!" she smiled in amazement, as she took the magazine.
"I guess Ichigo's the one who made the cover itself," remarked Shuuhei.
"Yeah, you never would've guess that a guy like him could make it," smiled Renji. "You know what this means, whatever's on the cover would have a several-paged article. If that's not a good idea, I don't know what is."
"Wow . . . . we should tell him that he's in Game Informer, that would blow his mind," nodded Nel. She flipped through the pages to find the article. Sure enough, it covered several pages talking about the young designer's game before she found the short interview about Ichigo's sudden stardom in the gaming world. It had a photo of him, though Ichigo appeared shy yet confident when talking about it.
"What else? Don't tell me that those other magazines talked about the game," Shuuhei scoffed in disbelief.
"Yep! Hey, Gigante, Ichigo's being mentioned in the magazines . . . .!" smiled Renji as he called out to Chad. Chad blinked before smiling a little in surprise as he got up from his desk and walked up to him.
"You're serious . . . .?" he muttered.
"Yeah, your bestest friend in the whole world is more famous than Drake in those Uncharted games," he smiled, giving him the new issue of Game Pro. "Ichigo's also mentioned in the Playstation Magazine and Xbox Magazine, even in some business magazine that talked about up-and-coming people under 25 . . . ."
"Hey, what's this . . . .?" Shuuhei pointed out at the last magazine in Renji's hands before blinking in realization. "That's what I think it is . . . .?"
"Oh, yeah! This one features not only Ichigo . . . . but our favorite boy-toy Grimmjow!" smirked Renji, holding it up for the others.
"Wha . . . . that's Advocate, and they had interviewed both of them?" Nel questioned in disbelief. "When the hell did that happen?"
"Dunno," Renji mumbled. Nel smiled and took the magazine to stare at the front cover. In bold letters on the side it said, Gay and Gaming in Retrospective: A Rare Breed in Next Level, and front and center were Ichigo and Grimmjow. Both men were sitting on the couch for the shoot, with the younger designer playfully smacking away the smirking blunet's hand from his lap as they were playing on their video games. Nel just had to smile, two years ago she hadn't expected her cousin and her boyfriend to be known like this and with good remarks from the public.
"Wow . . . . I guess even if Ichigo's game coming coming out in a couple of weeks, him letting everybody in the world that he's gay won't hinder the fact that reporters have good marks for it," she muttered.
"Yeah, so speaking of which, you think Ichigo knows about these articles on him?" asked Shuuhei as he skimmed through one of the magazines. "We should sent him a text about it just in case, you know? After all, he's stuck in Los Angeles for a few days with that bastard he called his boyfriend."
"I know, he's just gotten there yesterday," nodded Nel. "Renji, sent him a message, please . . . .?"
"If you can smack my butt, I'd do it," smirked the red-head.
"I'd smack you," she huffed, it was always the same request every day. She opened the Advocate magazine and flipped through the pages to stop where the article had started on. There was another shoot on them, with Ichigo was sitting on Grimmjow's lap while playing on the Nintendo 3DS as the latter smirked and winked at the camera. "Oh, Grimmjow . . . ." she smiled as she began reading:
". . . . Being a homosexual and being a video gamer are often two extremely different thing, yet very few people are entitled of being both in the LGBT community. 24-year-old Ichigo Kurosaki is one of those few, as a junior designer as well as level designer, before revealing his sexuality to his co-workers at the video game company called Los Lobos. In an ironic sense, he had met his future boyfriend who happens to be his supervisor, 30-year-old Grimmjow Jaegerjaques who is happened to be bisexual.
"'It's funny, neither of us knew of our sexualities until we got suspicious and soon we totally found out,' Kurosaki had shrugged, while the older man simply chuckled.
"'You'd think by being gay, one would know another gay guy nearby,' joked Jeagerjaques.
"Still, when the co-workers had found out about their once-secretive relationship, they were surprisingly supportive. Mostly due to the fact that Kurosaki believes they like to do 'gay stuff' to each other. Jokingly, he said, 'I think it had to do with a lack of girls in the workplace. Maybe deep down, they just wanna poke a banana at another dude's butt because they gets off from it.' Still, when said co-workers would do certain pranks with each other, some would often goes to them to ask if it's offensive to them. 'It's nice to know that they come to me or Grimmjow if that banana in the butt prank is okay, and I'm okay with it.'"
"'That's because you get hard from the pranks,' Jaegerjaques joked, and Ichigo was trying to scold at him for that comment for a moment. All of that aside, the reason for them to talk about their sexualities was it had to do with Kurosaki's upcoming game, and he wanted to make it clear that he doesn't want to be just known as a 'gay man who makes games'.
"'I'm not ashamed of being openly gay, but I don't want my preference to affect my game that's coming out soon,' he said. 'I'm just me. I created my game as if that's my kid, and I'd be downright sad if nobody would give it a chance.' Luckily for him, there are a surprisingly great amount of gamers within the LGBT communities supporting him and his first-ever title, pre-ordering the game the moment it had the release date. That made him very happy, stating that the pre-orders had 'sold' over 150,000 units on the first day. 'And I promised to give my Mom the very first game,' he stated with a smile. 'Grimmjow promised his friend, but I wouldn't have it . . . .'"
Nel sighed with a light smile as she continued reading, wondering if Ichigo had known about this by now.
Ichigo sneezed suddenly and rubbed at his nose. Maybe it had to do with the smog hovering over the city, he wondered. "You think the heat makes the smog thicker around here, Grimmjow?" he asked his boyfriend, luckily for them they were in an air-conditioned studio as he and Grimmjow wandered about.
"Could be . . . ." smirked Grimmjow. He glanced to the side at Ichigo and chuckled under his breath. "Can't believe you actually wearing that," he smirked, taking in the sight of his outfit of blue-plaid shirt and skinny black jeans with a grey fedora and his commonly red glasses. "Ew, you look like a lame hipster, Ichigo," he joked, earning a scolding frown from Ichigo.
"Fine, I'll take off the stupid hat," he huffed and took it off, revealing his orange hair that was getting shaggier with the bangs covering over his eyes. "Is that better?"
"You still look dorky," Grimmjow pointed out.
"Shut up," Ichigo frowned. "It's not like your outfit's any better," he added, glancing at the biker-like look on his boyfriend.
"Hey, man, I gotta look sexy for my man," he smirked playfully as he wrapped an arm around his waist. Ichigo just smiled. It had been over two years, yet he still couldn't believe it that he had accomplished his dream of making a video game. Everyone was happy for him, from his friends and co-workers to family, even to his ex-boyfriend who simply wished him the best of luck.
"Unless, of course, you blow on it since that can happen to anyone," Uryuu had added. Sometimes his realism bummed people out. Speaking of exes, it took almost a year since their 'coming out' that Ulquiorra admitted to being gay to the company. Ironically enough, the co-workers didn't seem to believe it, dumbly thinking that 'he was trying to get attention now'. However, the producer had never bothered to reveal that he and Grimmjow were in a relationship because of their opinions.
"It doesn't matter anymore . . . . you and Ichigo are already well-liked here, so my opinion is not important," Ulquiorra had said to the blunet over a year back, while Ichigo's game was getting made. "Maybe if we had said something back then, those imbeciles wouldn't have believe it for second now that I think about it. I think that you and him were just plain lucky."
"So you regret breaking up with me then?" Grimmjow asked.
"Actually, even if we had revealed our relationship early on, I still think there would be problems regardless," he sighed. "Maybe it's just fate that you and Ichigo were meant for one another."
"Aw, you really do got a heart like Nel had said," he smirked, though the smile was sincere.
"Tch, hardly . . . ."
It wasn't long until the testing session came, and Ichigo mentioned his sexuality to the testers. Surprisingly, no one seemed to care about the news since Yukio was too engrossed with the game, Toushirou just shrugged at it, and Tensa merely replied that one's lifestyle shouldn't get in the way of challenges and destinies. Whatever does that means . . . .
And now, just a few weeks away until the release, Ichigo couldn't help but feel excitement about it. "My gosh, you're like a fat kid at a candy convention," remarked Grimmjow when he took in his boyfriend's eager expression.
"I know, right . . . .? First I was mentioned here during the E3 convention a couple of months back, and now I'm right at the studio!" smiled Ichigo with a grin. "Shit, I feel like I could fly right now . . . .!"
"I know that feeling," he replied.
"Nah, I really know that feeling, I once jumped off the roof of my folks' garage after chugging five 'special' brownies," he chuckled. Ichigo held back his own laughter and shook his head. Just a couple more hours until they were ready, when Ichigo felt a buzz in his front pocket. "What is it?" Grimmjow asked, when the younger man took out his phone and looked at the new message.
"Oh . . . . Oh, wow!" smiled Ichigo. "Grimm, Nel texted me that my game had made the cover of Game Informer . . . .! That's so awesome . . . .!"
"Really? That's great!" he smirked.
"And . . . . oh, yeah, we did that interview on that gay magazine, plus I'm being noticed in other gaming magazine," he realized as he read more of the message. "Seems that everyone in the gaming world and the gay community are rooting for us, huh?"
"That's right, rookie!" Grimmjow smiled, before planting a kiss on his forehead.
"Ew, don't do that here!" the younger man tried to frown.
"Why? You know the female host loves guy-on-guy action," he smirked again.
". . . . Wow," breathed Ichigo after the show was done, collapsing into a nearby chair. Anxiety was heavy in the air the moment he stood in front of the camera for a million and a half gamers to see, as he spoke to one of the co-hosts of the show AOTS!. But he kept calm during the whole interview, mostly because the host kept joking that his game might have a gay enemy boss.
In fact, two of the hosts were supportive about his preference, when in the beginning the girl one playfully mentioned that her friend's making out with his own reflection was gay enough. They didn't care, since Ichigo's game was overwhelmingly amazing judging by the graphic and the game play on the demo, as they had seen it back at E3. But the humor came back when the male host playfully suggested to Grimmjow if he found him attractive during the times they talked before.
"Nah, you seem too needy for me," Grimmjow joked back, and everybody laughed. But now it was over, at least until his game is released and the show does a review of it. He glanced up when Grimmjow sat next to him and smiled, handing a bottle of water. "You okay?"
"Yeah . . . ." he sighed deeply. "It felt surreal, Grimmjow. Was it like this when you first got noticed in the gaming world?"
"Ooh, you wouldn't understand it, kid," he smiled lightly. "It felt so long ago, though . . . . I was twenty when I was mentioned in Playstation Magazine, when I finally made it up to one of the level designers. It was a small article and I was trying to act all smug and cool, but I felt nervous like shit. I remembered being asked about the new generation of gaming, because it was just before the PS3 coming out in Japan, and the only thing I said was, 'I think it'll be cool with all the new graphics and features and stuff.' and that's it."
"Really? That was your answer, Grimmjow?" asked Ichigo.
"It was the most simple thing I thought of, and I thought I blew it," he muttered, chuckling a little as he slouched his head back. "But Starrk came to me after the article had been published, and he said my answer was the answer of our consumers because they would've said the same thing. Meaning that I was right all along . . . . and now, all of that changed since then. I'm damn near thirty, I've been noticed by smelly fanboys and hot fangirls everywhere I go, and I'm the boss of my own team of designers. And best of all . . . . you're here for me and I'm here for you." Ichigo stared at him and smiled softly as he leaned closed to him.
"Well, isn't that- pbbbt!" Ichigo smirked with a playful rasberry. Grimmjow chuckled at him and sat up.
"What? I can't act serious for once, Ichigo?" he smirked.
"I knew you were serious, Grimmjow," he said, but smiled as he reached out to grasp at his hand. "That's what I love about you. I don't think I can see myself with another guy other than you."
"What about Shinji?"
"Please, he's too finicky," he scoffed playfully.
"Yeah . . . . that would be a weird pairing," he chuckled. Ichigo frowned at him but his smile returned, as his boyfriend smiled at him. "So what's the next chapter of your game, rookie?" he asked.
"You should know, idiot, if you've seen the ending of the game," he winked before standing up.
"But I'm still in the dark about it," the blunet playfully pouted. "So what happens next? Starrk told me that you were already making a sequel just before the testing, so what's going happen?" Ichigo laughed lightly as he took his hand and pulled him to stand up.
"Tell you what . . . . if you give me a Durarara! fantasy back at the hotel, then I'll tell you everything, okay?" he suggested seductively, his fingers reaching out to play at the hem of his leather jacket. Grimmjow grinned back, his pearly white teeth always feral, when he wrapped his arms around Ichigo firmly and stared at his smoldering brown eyes.
"Whatever you say, Ichigo-"
"Ah, ah . . . . it's Izaya Orihara now," the younger man muttered smugly. "Now let's go . . . . Shizuo, and don't toss a vending machine again just because it ate your dollar the last time." Grimmjow laughed, as they left the studio.
Tonight was going to be a fun night indeed.
"I'm gonna get drunk . . . .!"
"Best day ever, baby . . . .!"
Ichigo just wanted to frown in embarrassment, as the guys were acting idiotic as always. But he was happy, happy at the fact that today was his big day. His game was getting release by midnight tonight, and for that the entire company was celebrating with a party. Much to persistence, Ichigo had invited his parents as did Grimmjow with his own. The twin weren't invited for their safety (it was already rowdy enough with the hot moms), so everybody was on their best behavior for now.
"Sweetie . . . ." Ichigo looked to the side to glanced at his mother, who was sitting down with a canned soda in her hand. "Are you having fun? You seemed a little nervous," she said, luckily the noise of music wasn't deafening.
"Yeah, a little, Mom," he smiled sheepishly. "But you understand, this is a really big thing for me. I'm just overly excited about this."
"But not as excited as your father," smiled Masaki. At that Ichigo groaned a little. He had forgotten that his father was up on the roof, setting off fireworks with the idiot programmers. He would think that he would learn his lesson from the Sweet Sixteen disaster. "Don't worry about it, Ichigo, he promised not to set off so much at the same time," she said.
"I know, just wish that he would just sit in the corner with a beer like Grimm's Dad," he pointed out, glancing at the pot-bellied man dozing with his hand clamped tightly around his bottle. "Anyway . . . . is this the proudest thing you ever felt for me, Mom?"
"I've always been proud of you, Sweetie," Masaki replied. "This is the biggest accomplishment for you, but I don't think that this will be your only success. I'll always believe in you, Ichigo."
"Ah, thanks a lot, Mom," smiled Ichigo as he leaned down to kiss her cheek.
"Ew, don't kiss your Mom," laughed Grimmjow, catching his boyfriend by surprise when he passed by. "You should leave those kisses for me . . . .!"
"Ew, you go away," Ichigo scoffed but smiled when pulled into a playful headlock. "Go bother someone else, Grimm! I was talking to my Mom!"
"I was talking to my Mom, too, but I'm not all up in her face right now," he smirked.
"Hah, coming from a mama's boy . . . ." Ichigo smirked back.
"You're a mama's boy, also," he chuckled. "Anyway . . . . just fifteen minutes left until the midnight release, rookie. Got anything you wanna say about the moment?"
"Yeah . . . . it's been over two years, Grimmjow, why do you keep calling me rookie?" asked Ichigo. Grimmjow stared at him for a moment before shrugging a little.
"I honestly don't know," he smiled lightly. "It's just stuck with me ever since you came here. It shouldn't be like that, this is your second game being made and your first in which it's made by you. You're practically a veteran now."
"Heh, a veteran sounds a little too old school for me," smiled Ichigo. "Doesn't matter, I'm already used to being called rookie. It doesn't change anything about me."
"Of course not . . . . rookie," Grimmjow remarked with a light noogie against the orange hair.
"Hey . . . .! What's up with you, man? You're smoking . . . .!" The two men stopped to see what the fuss was about, as some of the co-workers clamored around someone. "Geez, Renji, you just to blow up a big one, huh?" one guy chuckled in disbelief.
"Renji . . . .?" Ichigo frowned before he moved to the crowd. They were right, the red-head was covered in soot as he tried to dust the smoke off his hair. "Oh shit, Renji, did you set off those rocket launchers I told you not to?" he scoffed.
". . . . No," Renji frowned awkwardly.
"Oh fuck . . . . where's my Dad, for crying out out?" he questioned.
"Well, certainly not dousing his hair out after firing those rocket launchers," he answered, much to Ichigo's embarrassment.
"He always does this . . . ." he huffed, shaking his head.
"Well, as long as he's alive, that's all right with everybody," Grimmjow sighed with a shrug. "Don't think our company's insurance covers people blowing themselves up, though." Ichigo just frowned, with every celebration his father always brought out fireworks. He was lucky enough to graduate from high school without a Roman candle going off.
"Something tells me that someone's in trouble," Grimmjow's mother smirked lightly as she noticed the commotion. "Certainly not my little Kitty," she added, petting at her son's hair.
"Nope, but my Dad is," sighed Ichigo. "He's gonna be okay, though."
"If you say so . . . . anyway, congrats on your work, Ichigo," Isabelle smiled. "Just hope that one of these days, you guys tie the knot."
"Uh, wait, what . . . .?" Ichigo frowned in confusion but the woman already left to wake up her husband. "Did . . . . she say what I think she said, Grimmjow?"
"Yep, but I'm not complaining," Grimmjow smirked a little. "Besides . . . . I think I'd rather wait for another few months until I marry you, anyway." Ichigo blinked at him before he glanced away with a blush across his face. "What? I said something wrong?"
"No . . . . I just never thought as far as marriage during our relationship," he smiled lightly. "But, I believe you for that, with the marriage idea. We could wait, at least until the number of sales of my game."
"Tch, if you say so," smirked Grimmjow, just as Ichigo's father rushed back into the break room.
"Hey, hey! Did I miss it?" grinned Isshin, as if he didn't smell like generic soapwater and brunt toast with his hair an shirt soaked yet singed.
"Oh, honey . . . . you really had to do it, huh?" Masaki sighed when her husband sat next to her.
"Hey, I just wanted to have fun, Masaki!" he grinned.
"Ugh . . . . when we get married, I hope we don't end up like that . . . ." frowned Ichigo, staring at his mismatched parents.
"Doubt that we'll be like them," Grimmjow agreed as he glanced at his own.
"Ah! Grimmjow, Ichigo, it's almost time!" Nel exclaimed as she caught their attention, looking at her watch. "Come on, guys! Just a minute left!"
"Shit, really? Damn . . . .!" Grimmjow grasped at his hand and pulled Ichigo into the center of the room. "Yo, dumbasses! It's about to happen . . . .!" he called out, and the co-workers gathered around. Nel had to pull Starrk out of his sleep so the boss can be awake. Through all of the excitement, Ulquiorra was standing silently on the sideline with the most slightest smirk on his face. He wouldn't openly admit it, but he was glad for the two men.
"Oh my . . . . I dunno what to say about this, guys!" smiled Ichigo, when the guys cheered 'speech, speech, speech . . . .!' at him. "No, I really don't know but . . . . all I can say is that even though it was my game to begin with, I couldn't have done this without you guys!"
"Yeah! Yay . . . .!" cheered the co-workers, as less than ten seconds to midnight counted down. ". . . . Five, four, three, two, one . . . .! WHOO!" Everyone cheered and hollered at the clock striking twelve, all of them hitting Ichigo with loving pats and smacks on his shoulders and back.
"Congrats, Ichigo! You made it . . . .!" smiled Renji.
"You've really done it, man . . . .!" Ikkaku cheered.
"Ichigo, Ichigo . . . .! I think this is for you, all right?" Shuuhei smiled as he moved through the crowd, handing him the first copy of the Xbox 360 version of the game. "Congrats, dude!"
"Wow . . . ." Ichigo took in the cover of his game; his main character crouch for an attack against the enemies while in the background all three worlds seemed to clash with one another. "Yes, I did it . . . .!" he smiled, glancing at Grimmjow who happened to smirk in similar gratitude.
"Yeah, you did it, rookie," he smirked, pecking him on the forehead.
"Yeah . . . ." he smilred as he stared at his newly title game.
Three young children hudled together in the partially dilapitated building, hiding away from the demons who were terrorizing and killing people in their town. They weren't sure if their parents had survived the attack, as the youngest was sobbing silently in her oldest brother's arms. They weren't found out by the monsters but it was only the matter of time, since the roof had collasped for anyone to see inside.
"I-I . . . . I'm scared . . . ." the youngest one sobbed.
"Don't worry, someone'll save us," muttered the boy, no more than eleven or twelve years old. The middle child, who was petrified by the horror, was completely silent but hung on to her other siblings for dear life.
"I want Mommy . . . ." she whispered tearfully.
"Me too-" But all of them shrieked when fragments of the roof fell, along with several demons leaping into the building. They were far scarier than the ones in folktale, as their mangled teeth snarled and their blood-colored eyes glared at them with hunger. The first one growled lowly until taking a leap at them.
"EEEK!" the children screamed . . . . but the blow had never came. The youngest girl peeked up and her eyes widened in shock. It . . . . looked like an angel, but his wings were mostly black and had markings around his bare torso and arms. The angel looked back at them with golden eyes but just slightly, before raising his black blade and suddenly moved forward. Within a few seconds, but felt like hours, the angel slashed and beheaded the other monsters who foolishly tried to attack them. The last one gurgled out blood from the wound in the chest as it leaped at him, only to have its head flying off of its body.
The angel just stared, the bodies twitched before it finally disintegrated into black dust. Then he turned to the children, in which the oldest instinctively held his siblings tighter from him. ". . . . You're safe, I've already killed the last of the demons," he muttered, turning to leave.
"A-are . . . . are you an angel . . . .?" the youngest girl muttered meekly, and the angel paused in his steps to glanced at her.
"I suppose you can say that . . . ." he sighed as his blackened wings shivered.
"You have a name . . . .?" she asked before her brother hushed her.
". . . . I'm known as Cael, the Cursed One," he answered. "Get away from here, there's a group of survivors not far from here in the western part of town." He stretched out his wings and before any of the children could question any further, he suddenly flew up. The living realm was still in chaos, despite of the defeat of the last enemy the last remaining demons were roaming around. It wasn't like the Prince would do anything about, as he still found any form of destruction amusing.
Under the setting sun filtered by haze and smoke, Cael peered around the sky until he felt a disturbance far in the distance. "This world . . . . I'll save it, no matter what . . . .!" he said in determination, as he flew to his next destination . . . .
To be continue . . . .?
Huzzah! Huzzah! It's finished, finally!
Now that this is over, I've been thinking about making a Durarara! fanfic! Specifically about a 'Shizaya' variety but I'm stumped about it until I can I think about an idea! Anyway, I'll get back to my other fics, until then . . . .!
Read and review.
I'll update a new story ASAP!