I Don't Like Lollipops
Rated: Teen for romance (Arty/Holly)
Summary: It was the one moment that he knew he would never live down: the only time that his mind failed him. But it seems that some good is finally coming out of it. Sequel to The Gift of Tongues
Disclaimer: Artemis Fowl is owned by Eoin Colfer, not me. If it were owned by me, the final book would end with Artemis and Holly getting together.
LES: This story is the unplanned for sequel to "The Gift of Tongues". It takes place after "The Time Paradox" and before "The Atlantis Complex". This piece was heavily inspired by a picture of Artemis and Holly that I was allowed to color. It showed Artemis and Holly sitting on a couch together, both of them with lollipops. As I colored it, I wondered under what possible circumstance Holly could get Artemis to have a lollipop after he made his opinion on them quite clear in the first book. LOL. So, after some thought, and because I'm such a Coin Shipper, I came up with this… Enjoy!
If Artemis Fowl were a two-bit villain in a B-rated movie, he would have steepled his fingers together, leaned back in his chair, and said "We meet again," in that tone that just told you that the second meeting was to go just as badly as the first.
But Artemis Fowl was not a villain… at least, not anymore. So he merely contented himself with glaring across the room at this arch-nemesis.
Both of his twin brothers… with over-sized cherry lollipops in their mouths.
Well, the cherry part was not the part that bothered him. It was the lollipops. Not only did he have a supreme distaste for anything that was considered 'childish', but it also reminded him of one of the lowest moments of his life.
His first encounter with the People was now a memory full of regrets in hindsight. At the time, though, he didn't have very many regrets about the venture that had earned him half a ton of gold. But, even back then, his one regret had everything to do with the cursed treat.
Artemis was in complete and total shock. He had never, in his entire life, had the distinct dishonor of being punched. And, yet, that was exactly the situation that he found himself in. His hostage had punched him with much more force than could be expected from such a slight woman.
"Yes! That felt good!" Captain Holly Short said with a rather demented smile on her face, as if it were her life's ambition to punch a twelve year old human. She began to head out, but called over her shoulder before she left. "Let the grown-ups take things over from here. If you're good, I'll bring you a lollipop when I get back." And she was gone.
Artemis opened his mouth to let lose a scathing reply that his brain always seemed to have on hand. What actually came out wasn't what he expected. "I don't like lollipops."
He was instantly horrified with himself.
Artemis nearly groaned aloud as the memory surfaced. All in all, it was far from his most brilliant moment. It was very rare (very, very rare) for his mind to fail him in such a way, and the incident haunted him for months.
His eyes were once again drawn to his twin brothers. He let out a brief sigh of annoyance and began to drum his finger on his knee.
Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap.
Thankfully, the young boy's silent fuming was interrupted when he spotted a slight heat distortion hanging in the corner of the room. Since Artemis knew that it was impossible for there to be any sort of evaporation going on inside his house on a cool spring day, which only left one option. The mysterious haze was actually a shielded fairy, and he was pretty sure that he knew which one it was.
He made sure that the twins were utterly occupied with their over-sized lollipops before standing up without a single word and calmly began to walk up to his room. As he expected, the haze slowly followed his progress through the manor.
After easily disabling the lock on his room, he stepped inside, but held the door open for slightly longer than usual. The haze took his invitation and hovered into the room. Once he had shut the door and locked it to stop anyone except for Butler coming into the room, he turned and smiled at the seemingly empty room. "Good afternoon, Holly."
At once the haze cleared, leaving only an oddly-proportioned person in its wake. It was a female no taller than a child, but with the obvious body of an adult woman. She was dressed in a futuristic law enforcement uniform, complete with a helmet and mechanical wings on her back. The wings deactivated, folding themselves within the hidden confines of her suit, and she reached up to remove her helmet, revealing her familiar short hair and heterochromic eyes that were a mirror image of Artemis' own.
"Good afternoon to you as well, Mud Boy." Holly said, taking a brief moment to massage the tips of her ears. It was a small habit that Artemis had taken note of long ago, but had yet to get up the courage to ask Holly why she did it. "So, how are things going with your brothers? If I didn't know any better, I'd say from the way you were glaring at them that you were contemplating fratricide."
"Then it's a good thing that you do know me better than that." Artemis said. "Even at my lowest points, I would have never considered murdering my own brothers… although they are rather annoying from time to time."
"Not everyone can spend their childhood memorizing a dictionary, Fowl." Holly said with a short laugh.
Artemis put on a great show like Holly had deathly insulted him, clutching his heart like she had stabbed him there. "I'm insulted, Holly. I certainly did not spend my childhood memorizing a dictionary. No, I had all ready done that by the time I was a toddler."
"Oh, yes, I forgot. Let's all bow to the Mud Boy and his genius!" Holly mockingly bowed to him from her waist.
"I never asked you to worship me, or my intelligence." Artemis said, one of his vampire smiles forming on his lips. "But feel free to do it again, anytime you desire."
Holly smiled back, and gave him a friendly, light punch in his side, more of a tap then a punch.
A few moments of silence passed between them, during which Holly moved over to a couch that had been set up in his room. It was a lovely antique piece, covered in soft maroon fabric, and most certainly not a fake. She flopped down on it, sighing in comfort. Artemis cleared his throat. "So… how is life treating you? And how is Jay-Jay doing in the Lower Elements?" Jay-Jay was a lemur that Artemis and Holly had recently rescued from the past. He was the last lemur of his kind, and he was currently living in Haven so that Foaly could synthesize his brain fluid in case of another Spellotropy outbreak.
"Well, Jay-Jay… he's living like a king." Holly said. "Everyone at Police Plaza loves him, and he's getting quite chubby because everyone keeps feeding him. He's become the mascot of the LEP, and I think Trouble's going to make him an unofficial Lieutenant any day now."
"That's good." Artemis said honestly. He'd be damned if he hadn't bonded with the little creature while trying to save him. Jay-Jay certainly deserved to be pampered after what he'd been through. Artemis flinched slightly as he remembered that it was his fault… well… 10 year old his fault that Jay-Jay had nearly been sold to the Extinctionists. Guilty gnawed away at his insides at what he had nearly been responsible for.
"And how are you, Holly?" Artemis asked. She hadn't answered his first question.
Holly sighed, her chin dropping to the open palm of her hand. "Would you blame me if I said 'bored as all heck'?"
Artemis smiled. "I understand what you mean. We've had nothing but excitement and adventure for the past few years, so now these moments of peace seem almost unbearable." Artemis sat down on the couch, a respectable distance from Holly.
"So, Artemis Fowl is getting a taste for adventure, is he?" Holly asked teasingly.
"It's more like I enjoy the mental stimulation, but to put it bluntly… yes, I do believe I'm getting the hang of this 'adventure' thing." The young boy said.
Holly laughed quietly. "Only Artemis Fowl…" And then she pulled something out of one of her suit pockets that caused Artemis' eyes to widen in shock and horror.
"Where in the world did you manage to get those?" The genius demanded, pointing accusingly at the lollipop that Holly held in her hand.
"It's amazing the things you can get away with stealing when you are nearly invisible to the human eye." Holly said, unwrapping the lollipop and sticking it in her mouth. "Why? Do you want one? I've got another…" She pulled out a second lollipop.
"I don't…" Artemis began, and then he forcefully swallowed the words before they came out. "I mean… indulging in a childish habit like eating sweets has never held any appeal for me. There are many things that I would rather spend my time on rather than giving myself a purely psychological sugar rush…"
Artemis was suddenly interrupted mid-lecture when Holly shoved the lollipop into his mouth.
"Just shut up, Mud Boy." Holly said. "Frond, that has to be the longest possible way to say that you don't like lollipops."
Disgruntled, Artemis knocked her hand aside and pulled the offensive candy out of his mouth. "Holly! How dare you…" He once again trailed off, staring at her. "You remember that particular incident?"
"Sure I do." Holly said, shrugging. "That was the first time I punched you.
Artemis groaned. He had always hoped that Holly had been too focused on going to fight the troll that she hadn't paid any attention to what her captor was saying as she left him. Obviously, she had heard his little comment. "I can't believe you heard that comment. How utterly embarrassing."
"Not you're most brilliant comment, huh?" Holly said slowly. "Almost as bad as 'you gave my mother Spellotropy, Holly'."
An uncomfortable silence hung between the two. Finally, Artemis spoke in a quiet voice. "I thought you had forgiven me, Holly?"
Holly sighed. "It's not as easy as that, Artemis." She said. "I have forgiven you for lying to me. Trusting you again is the hard part."
Artemis sighed, knowing that what she was saying was right. It was an old cliché: trust is hard to build, but easy to lose. Now Artemis was faced with that situation. It had taken him years for him to gain Holly's trust all the way up to the point where it seemed like she returned his affections for her. But… that lie… it had put him straight back at square one. Now it would take more years for him to gain that trust back… if he was able to get it back at all.
"Holly?" Artemis began nervously. "I'm wondering will I ever gain back your trust."
Holly sighed. "We'll see, Mud Boy. We'll see."
Another uncomfortable silence fell, and a few minutes had passed when Artemis' mind was elsewhere before he realize that he had taken nearly half-a-dozen licks of the lollipop, which was still in his hand. "Why am I eating this?" He cried, sitting up.
It seemed that this was enough to defuse the tension in the room. Holly suddenly burst out laughing at Artemis' reaction. "Just let go and enjoy it, Artemis." She said, sticking her own lollipop in her mouth.
Let go and enjoy it. The words echoed in his mind. Holly might as well have been using the Mesmer on him due to the effect that those words had on him. It was a message that she had told him before, but it was also the hardest piece of advice that she had ever given him. It was not Artemis' nature to just go for it. The boy genius did not make a move less it was sure that it would contribute to his success. But if he did what he wanted to do, there was a very low possibility that things would turn out as he desired.
But, still, he could barely control himself. He watched intently as Holly stuck the lollipop back in her mouth, sucking on the sweet delicately. There was nothing that he wanted more in that moment then to feel Holly's lips against once again.
Apparently fairies, just like humans, had that mysterious sixth sense where they could tell when someone was staring at them. That sense was currently buzzing, and she glanced up to see that Artemis was staring at her or, more accurately, her lips.
"Arty…" She said, but he didn't appear to hear her. "Artemis." She repeated, louder this time and finally got his attention. His eyes met hers guiltily. "My eyes are up here, Artemis." She said shortly.
"I am well aware of where your eyes are, Holly." Artemis said stiffly. "I just don't particularly care."
For a while, Holly could only stare at the human in front of her. Had that just been a come-on from Artemis Fowl? It had seemed like ages since he almost kissed her on the grounds of Fowl Manor, and only a while since she had actually kissed him while in the past together. Apparently the Mud Boy was still highly infatuated with her.
"Artemis…" Holly placed her hands on his shoulders, holding him back like her hands were a shield. "I told you… your elf-kissing days are over."
"And I told you as well that I'm not one to let these things go." Artemis said.
"I told you that this was not a challenge." Holly said heatedly.
"But you also said that there is no fun if there is no challenge, correct?" Artemis said. "I am going to kiss you now, Holly Short. If you really do not want me to, then you have more than enough strength to force me not to, right?" He pressed his body lightly against her hands, and they gave slightly under his force. "Judging by the fact that you are not pushing me away, you secretly want this."
"Artemis…" Holly gasped as he slipped past her defenses and, for the second time in recent times, felt his lips come in contact with hers. Of course, last time, she had been the one kissing him and he, due to the fact that he was recovering from a near-fatal injury, did little more than accept her kiss. Now their situations were reversed. Artemis had most definitely taken charge this time. Despite him saying that she could stop him any time she wanted, and her mind screamed at her that she had to stop him, she found that her body lost the will to do anything more then press closer to him and match his mouth motion for motion.
After several moments, Artemis hesitantly pulled away from her, searching her eyes once again as he had done all those months ago. This time, he didn't back off from what he saw in her eyes and dived back in, claiming her lips in another kiss.
Holly's hands, which had previously been braced against his shoulders, now slid up around his neck and she hoisted herself against his larger frame. Artemis, in response to her movement, wrapped his arms around her waist, holding her in place as he continued his assault upon her mouth.
They parted briefly for air before reconnecting once again, the kiss much deeper than the two previously. Holly moaned as their tongues met. For just a second, Holly couldn't stop herself from thinking about the fact that Artemis' tongue… his tongue was bigger than the average male elf's…
Shocked at the thought, Holly jerked away from the young human, leaving him confused. She stared into his eyes, and clearly saw his love and lust in his eyes. "This is a mistake." Holly said shortly.
"I know." Artemis said. "And, normally, I would be the first one to advice against making mistakes. But this is a mistake that I think worth making."
"Even if it works, it will lead to pain." Holly said. "The only thing that my magic can't give you is my longevity. Artemis…" She sighed, running her hand down his face. "You can spend your whole life with me, but I can't spend mine with you."
"I know it's a difficult thing to ask…" Artemis began.
"Dammit, Artemis…" Holly whispered, pulling him into another kiss, just as passionate as the last one. Artemis gladly gave into her, returning all of her passion. When she pulled away she met his eyes. "I think it's a mistake worth making too."
They kissed again.
LES: Some final notes:
"The Atlantis Complex": This story takes place almost immediately before TAC, so I put in lots of hints of Artemis all ready having Atlantis Complex. He dwells on his guilt, he taps his finger five times, they kiss five times, and a lot of his dialogue is in multiples of five. Not every single line, but when he's feeling especially guilty or nervous, fives pop up a lot more. Man, that was difficult. It's like being handed a character to write for and being told: "Oh, by the way, he can only speak in haiku." Ugh. I don't know how other authors write TAC-era fanfiction without driving themselves crazy. Kudos to you!
"You can spend your whole life with me, but I can't spend mine with you.": God, yes, I'm a Doctor Who fan. He tells this to Rose Tyler, who loves him, after she finds out about his former 'lovers'.
Where did those effing lollipops go?: On my proof-read, I realized that the lollipops mysteriously disappeared once Arty started coming onto Holly. Well... here is what happened to them. Let's just say that Artemis' antique couch is ruined now.
The third and final part of this little trilogy is coming soon...