Okay, so I've had this idea in my head for a while now. I thought about how there's twelve members in Organization XIII (minus Roxas and Xion) and how there are the twelve days of Christmas. Then this story was born! Anywho, I'll be publishing one chapter every day, starting today, up until Christmas. Twelve chapters for the first twelve members.
But first I have to say that I've twisted around the 358/2 Days timeline just a little for this story, which I really hope you don't mind. Yes, Roxas and Xion are in this story, but this takes place sometime after they're friends with Axel, but before half of the Organization gets destroyed at Castle Oblivion. So I messed with the events... just a little. Got that? I hope you enjoy :)
Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts-that belongs to Square Enix.
Chapter One :: A Partridge in a Pear Tree
"Please, Xemnas? Pretty, pretty please with hearts on top!" he heard Demyx's voice whine.
Xemnas massaged his temples. This was all he had been hearing for the past week. First it was Roxas and Xion. Then they encouraged Axel to chime in. And Demyx. Now all four of them were nagging his ears off.
You see, our beloved Superior had been quite the Scrooge in this season of joy and peace. Every time Christmas came around, nothing would get done. The Organization would either obsess over decorating or baking or anything else Christmassy. At this rate, Kingdom Hearts would never be completed. It was just about enough to make him sneer and say "Bah humbug." He would've been better off if that cursed Christmas Town had never been found.
So, I'm sure you can imagine how Organization XIII reacted to the announcement Xemnas gave during the last meeting in the Round Room.
"What do you mean, 'We're not celebrating Christmas this year'?" Axel demanded.
Xemnas sighed. "You heard me correctly. You all never pay attention to anything that matters during this season. So therefore, we are skipping Christmas all together this year."
"But… I've never spent Christmas here before…" Xion said sadly.
"Yeah! And Axel told us how great they are." Roxas put in.
"Please?" Roxas and Xion gave the puppy dog eyes of death and extended bottom lip.
They could get anyone to do what they wanted with that face—it was irresistible. Almost. Xemnas forced himself to look away and set his jaw. An eerie silence settled over the room of Nobodies. No one was ever able to resist the Bambi Eyes. No one.
There was silence for several minutes until one brave soul spoke out. "But I was always… intrigued by finding the biggest Christmas tree so we could brag."
That brave soul was none other than Saïx. The Superior's second in command. The Lunar Diviner. Mr. No-Nonsense-Do-What-I-Tell-You-Or-Face-My-Wrath. And he liked cutting down and decorating the biggest fir tree in the universe so that even the President of the United States would be jealous.
Xemnas restrained his frustration. "You all shall go about your normal duties as you always do; those are my orders. You are dismissed."
So, for the past week, nothing but irritating whines came from outside his door. Of course, Axel claimed he was there watching the two young keybladers, and Demyx openly admitted that he wanted Christmas now, but Xemnas didn't care. He was fed up. One more nagging voice and he would—
This was it—his final nerve. He shook with unspeakable power and an empty feeling he considered to be "rage" blurred his vision. The room started to glow, and the others could sense it even from outside.
"Scatter!" Axel's voice said, and the footsteps ran frantically away.
"Enough! No Christmas!" Xemnas's voice roared so loud the entire World That Never Was could hear him.
The energy eventually calmed down, and no voices came from outside of his door. There was only silence; calm, sweet silence. But his peace was clouded by an uncanny feeling that had settled in his empty chest. Xemnas walked to the door of his room, preparing himself for something, whatever the weirdness was that he sensed.
The door opened, but nothing was there. Xemnas stuck his head out of the door to look down the halls. Nothing. He sighed a breath of relief that he knew nobody—er, not Nobody, but more like… no one—would hear. And so, with a new relief, the Superior shut the door and turned around, just to almost have a nonexistent heart attack.
There, sitting in the middle of his room, was a small tree with Christmas colored ribbons rapped all around it. How it had gotten there, he had no idea. Surely it wasn't there when he had gotten up…?
The Nobody walked cautiously over to the potted tree. "Marluxia," He sneered, but saw something else. A small bird peered up at him; this couldn't be of XI's doing. He wouldn't put some kind of bird in his own plant, or a… note card? Xemnas picked it up and read it: On the first day Christmas, - gave to you a partridge in a pear tree. There was a line where a name should've been. "What in the name of Kingdom Hearts is this foolery?"
The Superior figured this was some prank by one of the Nobodies, so, picking up the small pear tree while squeezing the bird in his other hand, he headed for the Gray Area.
Saïx and Xigbar were the only ones in the congregational hall when Xemnas arrived, and seeing their leader visit took them by faint surprise.
"My Superior, may I ask what you are doing here?" Saïx asked after a slight bow, looking at the strange objects.
Without any formalities, Xemnas held out his new presents. "I demand the meaning of these."
Xigbar walked over to his superior and examined the stuff, including the note card. "Hmm, looks like the boss man's got a secret admirer of some sort."
"But how could they get into the castle?" Saïx wondered out loud.
Xigbar shrugged it off. "Who knows? Maybe they're in the castle." And without another word, the Freeshooter created a dark corridor and walked away to a mission.
Xemnas didn't quite get what number II was implying, but another thought donned on him. "What if this is from a Heartless which is in the castle right now? I must go find it and rid of its presence." Xemnas left for his room before Saïx could tell him that perhaps Xigbar meant that it was one of the other members, like Xemnas had first thought.
Determined that there was an intruder in the fortress, Xemnas called for the Dusks to put up the defense system of the Castle That Never Was. After the whirring noises of the high security sounded, he headed back down the white halls to his room. Sensing something wrong, or maybe it was that he was a tad bit paranoid (which he would never admit openly), the Superior summoned his Ethereal Blades and slid open the door to his living quarters, acting quite fearless—if he could even feel any fear, that is.
And now, what stood in his way was more treacherous than any Heartless that had dared to cross his path. In the mere five or so minutes he had been gone, the once bleak and expressionless room was now glittering with red and green lights, presents that said "Don't open till Christmas!" written on them, and—to his nonexistent horror—air fresheners were plugged into the outlets, giving off smells of nutmeg and pine.
"Perhaps some wretched Christmas Town Heartless…?" he wondered aloud. He began ripping the fresheners out of their sockets, remembering Christmas from when he still had a heart. He had hated it back then too. It was just a lousy excuse for gift-giving and decorating and… pointless good cheer. The very thought of those words left a bitter taste in his mouth. Most of Ansem's other apprentices enjoyed the holiday to its fullest, and obviously nothing had changed, even after losing their hearts. Xemnas snarled at the thought. They were Nobodies, they weren't supposed to look for something to make them reminisce the good ol' days.
Even after leaving the aromatic cartridges on the floor as a pile of ash, the Christmas smell was still there. His nose wrinkled at it, and the little partridge's big eyes weren't helping. It tipped its head curiously at him, as if to say "I liked those."
"What do you want from me?" He demanded from the bird. It just tipped its head the other way in response.
As Xemnas continued his stare-down with the bird, the lights had been neglected to be taken down and the door hadn't been closed. And so, lost in his self-righteousness against the partridge, the Superior sensed the other Nobodies' presences too late.
Roxas and Xion stared wide-eyed into the festive room. And as fast as they had appeared, they were gone, leaving Xemnas no time to seal their lips himself. The door was closed in an instant, and with one more glare at the inferior being, he began ripping the lights off the walls and shoving the presents into any available hiding spots. No sooner than the majority of the presence of Christmas had been stripped away from the naked eye had a knock come at the door.
Xemnas didn't respond as he tripped over a loose cord. Picking himself up, he listened with annoyance to Axel's hesitant voice.
"Uh, Superior? You in there?" Without waiting for a response, the pyro continued. "I heard from the kids that you've decided to decorate for the holidays. Does that mean you've changed your mind, or what?"
Xemnas sighed and walked over to the door, and opened it a crack. "No, VIII, I have not. Now heed my word and leave."
Axel sniffed the air. "Is that the slightest hint of… pine, that I smell?" He smirked enough for his superior to see.
"No, your nose is playing tricks on you."
A new set of footsteps was heard. "I believe you are correct, Axel. And perhaps there's some nutmeg mixed in with it?" Zexion's voice came smoothly, and he kept walking on.
Xemnas bit his tongue. Curse VI and his sensible nose…
"That's what I thought—"
"VIII," Xemnas cut off Axel sharply. "If you have no business here, be gone already."
"Oh yeah, about that, I wanted to talk about our, uh, raises. We've been working extra hard ever since you cancelled Christmas." he said it with obvious distaste. "And I've been short on munny to buy ice cream with—"
He sighed. "No raises,"
"Oh, and our moogle's come down with a terrible case of the mumps, and—"
"Just get onto what you really want to say," Xemnas growled.
"That is what I wanted to tell you! Oh, and do you mind if I come in? There's some private things I need to discuss with you—"
He rubbed his forehead. "VIII, if you only wish to come in so that you may see the 'decorations' and 'Christmas cheer' I've supposedly surrounded myself with, you may come in and see for yourself that XIII and XIV were mistaken." Without looking back, Xemnas opened the door, believing the room was clean enough.
Axel smiled and walked into the room, his eyes immediately falling onto George. Er, the partridge that was resting in its pear tree. It's not like the Superior had named it George or anything, because that would be dumb. Totally lame.
"What's that?" He pointed at the mysterious gift.
Xemnas silently cursed himself for leaving George—er, the bird—out in the open, but quickly regained his emotionless composure. "I was hoping that perhaps you could answer that question." he covered up his mistake.
Axel walked over to the tree and turned the note card over in his hand. He scratched the back of his head in confusion. "Hmm… not sure." he took a few more suspicious looks around, and appeared to be satisfied with the plain old white room.
Xemnas sighed with relief inwardly, but, of course, nothing wanted to cooperate that day. Axel's boot caught on the same wire that the Superior's had, and he bent down to examine it. After pulling the entire tangled mess of Christmas lights out from under the bed, he smiled.
"And I suppose that this is—"
"Just get out." he growled. "And… before you tell everyone about this little… misconception, let them know we shall be having a meeting in the Round Room tomorrow."
Axel mock saluted, dropped the colorful wire, and marched out of the room.
Xemnas sighed. His Organization was a group of all-powerful Nobodies, who weren't afraid to break the rules—to manipulate people to get what they wanted, to hurt the innocent, to send the Heartless out to do what they wanted. They used whatever means necessary to achieve their goals, and didn't feel a drop of remorse for their actions. Xemnas rarely doubted their skills to get the job done.
Now they all wanted to celebrate Christmas against his will. Where, oh where, had he gone so wrong?
After the door was sealed shut, Xemnas noticed George staring intently at him, amused light seeming to dance in its eyes.
He glared at the bird again. "Just shut up already."
A/N: Okay, the next chapter will be posted tomorrow! Reviews are always appreciated :D