Author's Note: Merry Christmas y'all! Sorry this is a day late, but there were circumstances with the family. ANYWAY!
This here is a Christmas commission for the lovely, patient, and ever-so-accommodating BatPhace (on dA) who is so kind that she allows me to share her commission with all of you as your Christmas fic! I hope you love it like nothing else, Batty! And I hope all the rest of you enjoy as well, and are having a lovely Christmas!
Oh and have a safe and happy New Year while you're at it! Love y'all! 8D
With a loud creak, the old wooden door to the workshop opened. The toymaker shuffled into the dusty room, withdrawing the wrought-iron key from the lock and pocketing it in his greatcoat. The small, high windows provided the only illumination in the dim workshop. Dust danced in the pale beams of morning light, which gently warmed the rough wooden worktable, the craftsman's tools, the paints and varnishes and brushes all in a row. Unfinished toys lay on shelves, paint drying, wax hardening, tin cooling. The workshop waited, hushed, for the master's hand to return and his skillful touch to resume bringing them all to life.
Axel Drosselmeyer quietly shut the heavy door behind himself as he entered. In the front room, Tifa was bustling about, opening the store for the day. She was a capable clerk and would not disturb him without good reason. In the quieter workshop, Axel lit a fire in the hearth and then carried a taper to the lamps around the room, giving himself ample light to work by.
As the room warmed, the toymaker finally took off his coat and hung it on a peg for that purpose. Then, before beginning his work, he stepped over to a large cabinet, as tall as himself and several times as wide. Withdrawing another key from his inner jacket – one far smaller and more delicate than the first – Axel unlocked the cabinet and opened the doors, allowing the light from the workshop to fall on five life-sized dolls.
The first doll looked like a young girl with short, dark hair. Her blue glass eyes stared vacantly forward. Her strict, trim dress was crossed with a sash in the front, and a toy rapier hung at her side. Axel brushed a stray hair back into place carefully and turned to the doll beside her – a young boy with silver hair, attired in a soldier's uniform. He smiled and straightened the boy's cap. "Xion, Riku…you two are a noble pair," he murmured softly. "Sora will love you both. I foresee hours of mock battles for you three. He is quite the little hero already. I hope you will make my nephew smile more brightly on Christmas Day than he has ever smiled – as difficult a task as that may be."
Then, the toymaker turned his attention to another pair – a lovely little pale-haired girl in a dress of motley lace and flowers, standing beside a tall, dark harlequin. "Naminé, you must be a sister to little Kairi. She will delight to braid flowers into your hair. Be her friend…she's a bit shy of strangers, yet." He turned to the tall, skinny man. "Clopin, make her smile. She has the sweetest smile, and a laugh like little bells. Her mother and father would love to hear it more often." He tugged a bell on the man's clothing, making it tinkle cheerfully. For Naminé, he whipped out a silk handkerchief and polished her shining rosy cheeks for the thousandth time. Then, at last, he turned to the fifth doll.
"Roxas…" he breathed, his soft, deep voice filling with awe. The flaxen-haired boy with gloriously blue eyes stood clad in a beautiful suit, one befitting a young prince. His face was serene and beautiful, and the toymaker gazed at his creation, hands hovering as if wishing to touch, yet slightly afraid to. It was as though his beauty and perfection could be too easily spoiled, even by the masterful hands which had created him. In a daze, the toymaker sat back upon his stool, pulling it a bit closer. Unable to speak, he simply admired the doll for several minutes, as if unable to believe in the perfection standing before his eyes. Truly, Roxas was a thousand times finer than any other doll Axel had ever crafted. He could almost fool the eye into seeing a rise and fall to that chest, an occasional blink of his eyes – he was so lifelike, even standing there in the doll cabinet.
With each day that passed, the toymaker grew less and less resolved to give his treasure away on Christmas Eve.
At length, he managed to tear his eyes away from the dolls in the cabinet and rise, gathering his other projects to his worktable. He left the cabinet open, however, and as he carved and painted and stitched all morning long, often his eyes would lift from his task for a moment and fix again on the cabinet and its contents – or rather, on the Doll Prince, Roxas.
The long morning wore away, and at midday Axel rose. He put away his paints and scrubbed his hands at the washbasin, then went back to the cabinet. With another long, lingering stare, he finally shut and locked the door before heading to the store out front. He greeted Tifa politely and asked after the business of the morning. He greeted the customers in his shop even more politely and wished each one a Merry Christmas. Then he wrapped himself warmly in his greatcoat and crossed the street to the little café where he ordered a dinner of wurst and bread and beer. He ate leisurely, gazing out through the windows at the windswept streets. The skies were heavy and gray and had been promising more snow – for now, the cobbled streets had churned the last snowfall into muck and slush, and the lingering veil of white over the rooftops of Berlin had taken on a grayish hue from all the coal and wood smoke warming the great city.
The bells of Immanuelkirche, the newly-finished church, rang out the hour of one, and Axel rose and paid his bill. He waited for the owner's daughter to bundle up a second dinner, then took the bundle back across the street for Tifa. For the next half hour, he tended to the store himself, while she rested and ate her meal. Though his shop was a tiny one, Drosselmeyer's toys were famous, and at this time of year, so soon before Christmas, there was a steady flow of customers. The half hour passed quickly, and Tifa soon returned to take over the front counter. Axel returned to his workshop gladly. When the door was shut behind him, the first thing he did was reopen his doll cabinet. He sighed as his eyes again lingered over Roxas, admiring every feature of the doll. He was every day growing to hate the hours when he must lock Roxas away from his sight. Axel wished in his heart that he could spend every moment gazing upon the prince…yet the demands of life prevented him. And, of course, there was Christmas fast approaching…
The toymaker turned his attention back to his creations, checking how far the last coats of paint and varnish had dried. A little more time was needed, so he lifted a wooden rocking-horse that he was still carving and began to work on that. Every day was busy for him, now. Well-off parents often liked to specially order personalized toys for their children. At this time of year, Axel had long since finished filling his store with the regular toys – he needed all his available hours for the special orders. Even the five dolls had been finished for over a month – he could not risk running out of time before Christmas and failing to give them to his nephew and niece. He had been working on them all year – planning them for even longer. Although, in his plans, there had been four dolls, not five. The harlequin's patterned costume had been much smaller, at first – designed to fit Roxas, until Axel had tried it on him and realized it wasn't right at all.
Even when he'd still been crafting Roxas, the doll had begun to take on another life. He wasn't – simply couldn't be – a dancing, laughing harlequin. He might dance and laugh – in Axel's imagination he always did – but with a regal dignity and grace. Like a prince.
So Axel made a suit fit for a prince, and a gypsy called Clopin for Naminé. And every day he told himself that Roxas was still for Sora and Kairi…but every day his conviction grew weaker.
Five pairs of glass eyes watched the toymaker from within the cabinet – two dreamed of "Sora," and two dreamed of "Kairi"…and one didn't know whom to dream of, so he just watched the toymaker work. Whenever green eyes lifted from their task, glass-blue ones were waiting, gazing back at every longing stare, wondering what it meant.
Toys, after all, once had a life of their own – a small, frail sort of soul. A part of their maker. When dolls were made one at a time, by one pair of hands, lovingly crafted for one special child, they would gain a spark of life through those long hours of toil. A toymaker would always unwittingly impart a ray of his own spirit – and thus, all toymakers who truly cared would eventually become thin, withered old men, seeming frail enough to be blown away in a strong wind. They would give themselves away a piece at a time until there was almost nothing left within them – but they lived on in every toy who had received its own tiny soul from its maker.
A doll's soul didn't inspire them to think grand thoughts or imagine distant adventures, but it gave them enough simple wisdom to know their purpose. Whenever pretty wrapping paper was torn away and glass eyes beheld the living smile of their young master for the first time, they always knew. This was their purpose. For this one, this smile, they existed. By their nature, dolls knew true happiness when they made their master happy. Naminé and Clopin waited in the cabinet, breathless for the moment when they could begin to make Kairi smile. And Riku and Xion would have felt their hearts pounding – if they had them – in anticipation of the moment when they would meet Sora and begin their adventures with him, fighting brave battles and conquering evil foes in the vast land of imagination.
For Roxas, the waiting was more like that of a doll in the toy shop window – glass eyes taking in the world, wondering who the master would be. Except, instead of the passers-by, he had Axel Drosselmeyer, his creator, before his eyes every day. And every day, as those green eyes grew warmer and warmer toward him, Roxas stared back with silent curiosity, wondering what it all meant.
Night fell early on these winter days, and it had been dark for several hours when Axel rose from his workbench, finally putting all his handiwork and tools away. Several new toys were left for their final coat of varnish to dry, and a few were already moved over to the shelf of finished toys waiting to be wrapped and delivered. He would hand these to Tifa in the morning, and she would send them to their waiting homes with the delivery boy. For now, however, she was already long gone – the store had closed in the early evening and Tifa had gone home, leaving Axel alone in his workshop for the last few hours, his workbench lit by the glow from an extra candle or two.
After long, lingering minutes before the doll cabinet, Axel finally managed to close the door on his creations and lock up. He doused the lights – the fire was already banked – and locked up on his way out, leaving a large portion of his heart behind in the workshop as he stepped out into the cold December night.
Snow had begun to fall over Berlin. The street lamps cast their faint golden glow into the dark, making a halo where falling white flakes became shining stars for a moment before drifting down to settle on the streets and sidewalks, creating a thin blanket over the world. The toymaker's steps were muted crunches as he made his way home.
It was another day closer to Christmas.
Morning dawned, but dimly. The gray sky still hung low over Berlin. Snow had fallen off and on through the night, yet the clouds seemed to promise much more. The spires of the greatest buildings in Berlin scraped at their gray undersides as if they would puncture the skies. The Palais am Festungsgraben, the Pfaueninsel, Zum Guten Hirten Kirche and the Lutherkirche, and the grandest of all, the Berliner Dom – all seemed intent on reaching into the clouds and bringing down another heavy blanket of snow.
Axel entered his shop a good hour before Tifa arrived. He wanted to get an early start, he wanted to make sure the latest deliveries would arrive today…and he wanted to unlock that cabinet in his workshop with the delicate little key in his innermost pocket and gaze rapturously at his Doll Prince, Roxas.
First, he gave a fond moment to the other four – but they were perfect, and ready, and needed little from him now. In a few days, they would go to his niece and nephew. Quickly, then, he turned his eyes to his greatest creation, and again his hands hovered as if yearning to touch. Yet he still hesitated – he had not dared any unnecessary touches since finishing Roxas. It was as if he feared something…some corner of his heart, perhaps. As though he knew, though he could not admit it, that if he let himself touch Roxas now, he would never be able to let him go.
So his hands drew back, and only Axel's eyes clung to the doll, silent adoration shining in them. Oh, if he had known he would come to love his own creation this much, perhaps he never would have made him. Certainly, he would have been more careful – he would not have made those eyes quite so beautiful or so blue, had he thought in advance of the dangers such loveliness presented to his own heart. He would not have made that golden hair so soft, or that face so refined and delicate, had he suspected his own hands would have ached to caress it. And he would not have called him Roxas and dressed him as a prince, but would have set himself with determination to create only the harlequin for Kairi, the silly source of amusement and laughter that he had originally planned. Oh, if he had only known.
Even now, Axel told himself all was well. Only, his mind could not settle on which child he should give Roxas to – whether Kairi or Sora, he wasn't sure. Perhaps both of them? They could share one doll between them, surely… He debated over this thought, not daring to consider the alternative – that each child would already have two dolls, and neither one need know about the fifth.
Thus he worked away another day, much like the one before. Another set of toys was completed by the time he locked up, late that evening, and another set of packages would burden their delivery boy on the morrow. Tifa cheerfully handled the store and beautifully wrapped up gifts for the customers, and the master craftsman busily devoted himself to perfecting every toy. Hours slipped by like the trickle of sand in a glass, and Christmas raced toward them faster each day.
Snow fell, then stopped falling. Night fell, then day dawned again. Carolers sang in the streets, and people smiled warmly at one another.
Before Axel knew it, Christmas Eve arrived.
Tifa closed up the store early. Axel had already finished the last toys, and they had been wrapped up and sent off around noon. He spent the afternoon in the front, greeting last-minute customers. At last, when all were gone and the toy store silent, he went to his cabinet. He gently lifted out Xion, Naminé, Riku, and Clopin, setting them in his workshop. His niece and nephew were going to pay him a visit here tonight. It was all arranged – they had been begging to see Uncle Drosselmeyer's workshop for ages, and the dolls were to be a special surprise. They stood before the workbench, all arranged perfectly, waiting for the children to come.
Returning to the cabinet one last time, Axel hesitated. Roxas stood there, somehow even more beautiful now than he had been every day before. Axel reached for the Doll Prince…then hesitated and pulled back. His hands trembled…and then he shut the cabinet and put the tiny key in the lock. "A final surprise," he muttered to himself. "I'll surprise them all at the end. Save the best for last, of course."
He spent the remaining time fussing over the other dolls, trying not to think of the moment he'd open the cabinet again. Trying to pretend it wasn't less than an hour away.
A carriage clattered to a stop outside the front of the store, and Axel's ears perked up. With a deep breath, he straightened and smiled, then left the workshop and went to open his front door to the children and their parents.
"Uncle Drosselmeyer! Uncle, Merry Christmas!" Sora cried, bounding from the carriage into his arms for a giant hug. Kairi followed quietly, stepping down daintily like a tiny little lady, but her eyes still sparkled with excitement.
"Merry Christmas, Sora! Merry Christmas Kairi!"
"Mewy Chwistmas, Uncle," Kairi all but whispered.
"Children, have you been very, very good this year?" He beamed, ushering them all into the shop.
Sora piped up at once. "Oh yes, Uncle! We've been perfectly splendid, that's what Father said!" Axel smiled up at Squall and his wife, Rinoa. "I haven't pulled Kairi's hair this year, not once!" Sora beamed proudly.
"Not once?" Axel gasped.
Kairi nodded, smiling, confirming the truth as Sora grinned. "Not once! So we are allowed to come to the party this year with Mother and Father."
"The party?" Axel feigned ignorance.
"Yes! We're going to a party tonight! But Father said because we have been so splendid, that you were to let us see the workshop first. Are we really to see the workshop, Uncle Drosselmeyer?" Sora was all sparkles of excitement and nearly bouncing as he asked it.
"You are, you are indeed!" Axel exclaimed with a grin, including Kairi in the excitement. "Come, children, right this way!" Sora dashed to follow, and even Kairi's steps quickened as Axel led them to the door to his workshop. There, he paused, bending down and whispering, "Now, children, you must be very careful in here. There are magical wonders within, which are my greatest secrets. And you must swear not to tell a soul of the things you see beyond this door.
Blue eyes wide, Sora nodded, crossing his heart. "We promise, Uncle Drosselmeyer."
Kairi nodded too, whispering, "Pomise."
"Very well," Axel intoned solemnly. Then, with a flourish, he opened the door.
Both children stepped into the room slowly, in pure awe, but stopped and stared immediately at the life-sized dolls standing before them. "Uncle!" Sora gasped. "Did you make these?"
Smiling, he took the two children by the hand and led them forward. "Sora…this is Xion, and this is Riku. They…are for you." The boy's eyes bugged, and Axel turned Kairi toward the other two. "This is Naminé, Kairi. And this is Clopin. They're yours." The little girl was speechless and breathless with wonder as she reached out a tentative hand, brushing reverent fingers over the lovely dress Naminé wore.
"They're soldiers!" Sora burst out excitedly. "Look, the sword! And this one has a rifle! Look at his uniform, oh, look here too! He has a bugle!" Sora was taking in everything at once, bouncing with excitement. Kairi was just staring in wonder. Axel smiled.
"There's more, children," he announced, then stepped behind Naminé, first. A key handle protruded from her back, and Axel winked at Kairi before turning it once, twice, three times…and then three times again. The quiet sound of gears turning accompanied each crank, and then the doll…moved.
Kairi gasped and jumped back as Naminé jerkily curtsied, then raised her arms and turned a ballerina's spin. While Sora prattled and Kairi stared, Axel turned the key on Clopin, and the harlequin sprang to life, smiling at Kairi and performing a trick, seeming to pull a little flower from his ear, which he offered to her. The little girl positively sparkled with contained delight as she took it.
"Uncle, Uncle, they move? Do mine move too?" Sora was demanding breathlessly.
"Watch and see, Sora," Axel smiled, then went to the key behind Xion and turned it. The girl sprang to life, drew her sword, and pointed it forward as if in a challenge, then sheathed it again. Riku, as soon as the turn of the crank gave him life, too, stood up at attention and saluted his new master. Sora positively squealed with delight, quickly peppering Axel with questions about what they could do and how it worked and show him how to turn the key.
"Sora, Kairi, what do you say to your uncle?" Rinoa reminded them.
"Thank you so very much, Uncle Drosselmeyer!" Sora exclaimed, hugging him around the waist. Kairi whispered a lisping echo of this, hugging Axel's hand, unable to reach his waist, even if Sora hadn't been in the way. Beaming, he told them both that they were most welcome, then backed away as both children returned to their awed admiration of the dolls.
He reached the cabinet, unnoticed, and his hand slipped into his pocket for the tiny little key. He drew it out, touching the rough wooden surface for a moment as he prepared to unlock the door…and everything seemed to slow down and slip away into silence. Axel's hand, gripping the key until his knuckles were white, trembled as he tried to put the little bit of metal into the lock. His breathing was suddenly difficult – strangled, even. He felt weak all over, as though he might faint. But this…this was for the children…
Dizziness washed over him, and in that moment, Axel's resolve vanished. The key disappeared back into his pocket, and he turned away from the cabinet. The sounds of voices and the sight of the children and dolls came back in a rush, and he smiled again. They were thanking him over and over, preparing to leave for the party. Their father was letting them bring their gifts, though the dolls would be sent home to wait for the children there, rather than taken in to the party. Axel helped them pack up and saw them off cheerfully, waving farewell to his two little relatives and four wonderful dolls, all of whom looked to be in their own stages of perfect bliss, content beyond words with their new situation.
When they were gone, all the energy went with them, and Axel returned to his workshop with weak, staggering steps. It wasn't the children or the wonderful fun of Christmas Eve that left him feeling depleted – it was that momentary battle against his own selfishness. A battle he had fought and lost in an instant…and now there was nothing more to be done but regret his own failure.
Only Axel didn't regret it. The moment he opened the cabinet again and gazed upon his beautiful Prince Roxas, any lingering shame evaporated. Roxas was still here, Roxas was his, and Axel felt such a surge of relief that he could not begin to regret his selfishness.
"Roxas…" he gasped, reaching forward…and this time, he touched his treasure. His hands trembled but did not hold back – there was no more reason to, now. The beautiful doll was his own – he could hardly give it away now, as an afterthought. Fingertips brushing the perfect, smooth face and daring, at last, to run through those soft strands of gold, Axel sighed blissfully. "Roxas, Roxas…my own Roxas, my precious one…" Shuddering with adoration, he lifted the doll into his arms and took him from the cabinet. He set his feet on the floor and finally dared to do what he had yearned to do so desperately for so long. He turned the key.
Throughout the whole visit, blue glass eyes watched the children and the other dolls through a tiny knothole in the wooden door of the cabinet. Roxas saw the other four given to the children, and he saw the smiles, and he saw the keys turned and the dolls given life. He saw the pure happiness this gave the children, and in his thin little doll-soul, he knew this was his own destiny as well, and his truest happiness. But when the cabinet door remained shut and the toymaker did not give him to the children, Roxas was puzzled. He did not feel sad to see the others go – there was nothing for him to grieve, for the children had not yet become his masters. But he was curious again, and filled with uncertainty. His little spirit trembled with hope as he wished for a master, but he did not know whom to dream of.
When the door finally opened and the toymaker touched him, Roxas realized that he was not to be given away. Warm arms wrapped around him and lifted him, and Roxas understood, finally, that the toymaker himself – Roxas' own creator – was to be his master, forever. The realization filled him with hope that he could now make his master happy, and thus share in that bliss.
So, when Axel turned his key and Roxas felt his clockwork begin to move, giving him the freedom of motion, the first thing he did was turn to his new master. Then, Roxas paused, uncertain what to do to make Axel happy. The others had all been taught how best to move, but Roxas had very little to draw upon. Head tilted to one side as he regarded Axel, his dollish memory provided only one idea.
Roxas raised his hands to his master's face and touched him. The wooden fingertips brushed over warm skin, stiffly moving into long red hair as Roxas silently regarded his master. Waiting.
Green eyes filled with mist as a rapturous smile broke out over the toymaker's face. Axel choked on his name, "R-Roxas…" and reached for him, closing the doll in a wonderful, warm hug. Roxas felt bliss well up in his tiny little soul, and he hugged back awkwardly. Had he been able to speak or shed tears, he would have wept with joy. All those long hours and days of green eyes gazing upon him now seemed fulfilled in this moment, and Roxas knew he would never ask for anything other than this.
Axel could not bear to part from Roxas again.
That night, he took the doll back to his home with him. He covered Roxas in a large cloak and led him through the quiet, snowy streets that Christmas Eve. When they reached his home, he took obsessive care of his doll, making sure Roxas was perfectly dry and not at all damaged by the walk. Then, when he went to bed, he carried Roxas in his arms again and lay him down on the sheets, curling up beside him and covering them both with his quilt. Roxas gazed at him sweetly, head resting on the other half of Axel's feather-down pillow, and Axel just stared at him in wonder for a long time before he drifted off to sleep.
Christmas morning dawned bright and sparkly, the thick coating of fresh snow glittering like a million diamonds had been scattered over Berlin during the night. Axel opened his eyes to see morning sunlight warming golden hair, his Prince Roxas looking perfectly radiant…and Axel enjoyed one long, perfect moment of bliss before he realized that Roxas wasn't moving.
His heart sank as he saw that the doll had wound down – the lovely, lifelike movements of the night before would not greet him this morning until he turned Roxas' key again and gave him the power to move.
Because Roxas was not real. No matter how alive he looked, he was a doll, made of wood, and he ran on wheels and gears, not a beating heart and living breath.
Dejected, Axel rose from bed and turned Roxas over, cranking the key in his back until the doll moved again. Then his smile returned, for the first thing Roxas did was reach for him and wrap him in another hug. "Oh Roxas," he murmured, cradling the doll, "my darling, beautiful Roxas…" How I wish you could be truly alive.
Axel spent a leisurely day together with Roxas – it was Christmas, and his store was closed. He remained at home, showing different objects to Roxas and talking to him, explaining everything from fireplaces to snow outside the window. Roxas didn't answer – he could not – but he always seemed to be listening attentively. He even learned to point at something and look at Axel, as if to ask, "What is that?" Axel would smile and explain, and then Roxas would hug him in thanks. Though the doll could not speak, Axel felt that, somehow, they understood each other.
"How I wish I knew what you are thinking in that head of yours," he murmured longingly, gazing at his doll playing with the wick of an oil lamp, turning it up and down over and over. Roxas just looked at him, listening, and cocked his head to the side. Axel smiled, adoring the gesture already, and hugged him.
That night, before bed, he remembered to wind Roxas up again so that the doll would still be working in the morning. He tried not to think of Roxas as another pocket watch, like the one he already had – needing to be wound up morning and night. He tried not to think of the act at all, or what it meant. Just sleep – he would think of sleeping, here beside his beautiful prince.
In the morning – after winding Roxas again, happy to see that he was still working fine – Axel left for the toy shop very early. He wrapped Roxas in a cloak again, making extra sure to protect him from the elements, and they reached the shop well before Tifa did – even before many people were about.
Axel kept Roxas in his workshop during the day. When he had to go out, such as during his lunch time, he locked Roxas in the cabinet, apologetically explaining that Roxas needed to stay here, and he would be back soon. Roxas didn't seem bothered, although when Axel finally came back and let him out again, he seemed happier, to Axel's mind.
He took pains to keep Roxas a secret. The dolls had all been gifts, and he was not proud of the fact that he had kept Roxas back. But more than that, Axel had grown fearful – paranoid of thieves. His treasure was such a wonderful doll – so far superior to any other creation – and Axel feared that letting word of him spread would cause greedy hearts to seek to gain him by any means necessary. And, if not that…even to have other people gazing upon Roxas soon felt intolerable. He wanted to keep his precious prince all to himself and let no one else touch him or exclaim over him. It was not a noble feeling, but Axel could not help it.
At night, after a secretive journey home – and after he wound Roxas up again – Axel would sleep beside his perfect doll and dream. He dreamt Roxas was alive, dreamt of hearing his voice, of feeling his touch and finding it warm and soft – a living, breathing Prince. Unknowingly, he would murmur in his sleep as he dreamt of taking Roxas in his arms and laughing and talking with him – devoting himself to loving the beautiful boy forever.
But it was only a dream, and day after day, Axel Drosselmeyer awoke to find that his doll needed to be wound up again.
Night after night, Roxas watched Axel sleep. He heard the words Axel mumbled in his dreams, and though he didn't always understand exactly what they meant, his small doll's soul could feel the longing in them, and he knew something wasn't right. Axel should not still suffer from longings – if he was Roxas' master, then Roxas' purpose was his happiness. If Axel was not perfectly happy and content, then Roxas could not rest. He wished his master would give him tasks or make his desires known so that Roxas could do his best to take away whatever was making Axel unhappy. But the toymaker only went about his business, keeping Roxas at his side almost constantly, and Roxas could not understand what was missing.
One night, as he was gazing with glass eyes at Axel murmuring in his sleep, Roxas finally rose from the bed and crossed the room. He lifted a hand to brush aside the linen curtains and looked out the window – out over the snow-covered city. The moonlight made the white-cloaked buildings glow, and the stars in the midnight blackness above twinkled back, sharp and small with the clarity given to them by the clear, cold winter air. Unblinking blue eyes watched the stillness for a long, long time.
After an hour or two, a tiny streak of silver cut through the sky unexpectedly – a single falling star. Roxas saw it, but he thought nothing about it. He knew nothing about falling stars or their fairies or making wishes, and indeed, he did not have the capacity to formulate a direct wish of his own. But in his tiny doll heart there was an unspeakable longing, and the fairy in the falling star heard him.
A brilliantly bright, winged little creature appeared outside the window, capturing Roxas' attention. He tilted his head at the hovering creature, then pointed and turned to look at Axel…only to see and remember that his master was asleep, and never responded at such a time. With a sinking expression, Roxas turned back to the fairy, simply watching it and wondering.
From nowhere and everywhere, he heard a sound inside him that was like bells and sunshine laughing. It didn't make words the way Axel and other humans made words, but it made meaning, and Roxas heard what it said. "What is your wish?"
Shaking his head, Roxas shrugged slightly. He had learned that the gesture often made Axel explain things to him better. The sound came again. "A human?" Somehow, Roxas felt that the human referred to was Axel, whom he'd just thought of. "That human there?" Roxas turned his eyes back to the bed and Axel, not sure what the little light was asking about him. He nodded anyway. There was, after all, no other human he could think about.
The fairy seemed to comment, "Humans are strange creatures, aren't they?"
Roxas thought he understood that, so he nodded, then looked back at the fairy and nodded again.
"You would like to know something?"
Roxas tilted his head. After a pause, he nodded. He would like to know how to make Axel happy…yes, that was right.
"You will never understand as a doll. Would you like to be a human?"
Pausing, Roxas let this thought enter his mind as much as possible. He was not sure what being a human would mean…but if only a human could understand how to make Axel happy, then he must become one, mustn't he? But then again, Roxas remembered that Axel had made him a doll, and he wasn't sure that becoming something else would please Axel. If he were upset, it would be devastating.
"I see," the fairy offered. "Then to grant your wish, I will make you able to become human. The degree you reach will be determined by your will. You may become more or less, but make sure you soon discover how you wish to keep yourself hereafter, for one year from tonight you will no longer be able to change." Light burst from the fairy and surrounded Roxas, who felt a deep tingling start at his surface and work down into him, all the way to his deepest clockwork. When he looked up again, the fairy was gone.
Roxas tilted his head…and blinked. He didn't feel different… Then he gasped. He'd blinked! He could blink now! He did it again and again, realizing that blinking was what he'd always meant to do when he tilted his head, but he hadn't been able. Then he gasped again, because he just realized that he had gasped a moment ago. He could breathe! He drew in a careful breath and let it out…then stopped. Breathing was a strange sensation, but he thought he could grow to like it. Not breathing was easier, and he supposed he would forget to breathe if he didn't do it intentionally, but it was pleasant to know he had the option.
What next? Roxas wondered. He began to search his memory, and immediately recalled how Axel always seemed a little bit unhappy when he wound Roxas up. Reaching behind himself, Roxas felt his key. He wasn't sure what to do about it…but the fairy has said his will would control his humanity, so Roxas brought his thoughts together and concentrated.
I do not have a key. I do no need to be wound up. I will run forever and I will never run down. I am alive with my own life!
He began to feel that tingle again, but it seemed weak. Roxas repeated the mantra in his mind, over and over, and the tingle grew stronger, almost to the point of a burn. Just when it was becoming uncomfortable – and Roxas was beginning to learn the meaning of "discomfort" – it stopped. Roxas also stopped concentrating and examined himself.
His key had vanished.
Breathing in deeply, he felt himself running with a new power, as if supplied with unlimited energy. His face broke into a wide smile at the feeling and the knowledge that he had succeeded…then he smiled even wider at the lovely feeling of smiling. His face felt pliant now, movable and able to reflect countless expressions.
Newly hopeful, Roxas returned to bed and lay down, eager for morning to wake Axel so that he might see if the toymaker was pleased with the changes. The remaining hours of the night had never seemed to pass so slowly, but he enjoyed them just the same, curled up within the circle of Axel's arms.
When Axel opened his eyes, the loveliest face in the world was there, smiling at him, and a sweet tenor voice spoke its first words to him.
Axel nearly jumped out of bed. He nearly yelled in surprise. He nearly panicked…but he didn't. Eyes as wide as possible, he just inhaled deeply. His doll – his Prince Roxas – looked stunning. His face looked soft, his eyes alive, and…was he breathing? Axel sat up rapidly and Roxas did the same. "Roxas…you…"
"I'm alive, Master. Are you happy?" The beautiful voice almost broke his heart.
"Happy?" Axel gasped, lightheaded. "I'm…yes, I'm happy. Roxas I'm…how did…you are…" His eyes raced over the boy, everywhere at once. Unable to finish any of his thoughts, he finally whispered, "Beautiful…"
The most radiant smile he had ever seen broke across the doll's face, and Roxas extended his arms for a hug. Axel fell into them, tumbling back into bed and pulling Roxas close.
That was when he felt the difference.
What had once been a wooden doll now felt warm. His polished surface was now skin, but…underneath the skin, there was no softness of yielding muscle and tissue. From right below the skin, Roxas was still solid. He was still all wood and gears inside. Still a doll. He was alive, in a way, but as a living doll. He was not quite a human boy.
Still, Axel's spirits were lifted again almost at once. It was too much to hope for, he reminded himself, that Roxas would become human. This – this was already a blessing from Heaven. And Roxas could speak and smile – who knew, yet, what else he could do? He might already be everything Axel dreamed of.
"I'm happy you are happy, Master," Roxas said, smiling within the circle of his arms.
Axel melted. Placing a sweet kiss on his prince's forehead, he beamed. "And when did I become 'Master'? Have you always thought of me that way?" The former doll nodded, smiling. Axel shook his head, amused. "I will never be a fit master for a prince like you. You should call me Axel, Roxas."
"Axel…" Roxas tilted his head to the side and blinked. His name on those lips made Axel's heart race. "…What is a prince?"
Laughing, Axel began to answer the first of a million questions.
Through the winter months, Roxas continued to learn by Axel's side. The toymaker stopped hiding him quite so carefully – to all appearances, Roxas seemed human now, and only a closer inspection would reveal something amiss. Axel, needless to say, was wary of letting anyone too near. However, he made Roxas his official apprentice at the toy shop, allowing him to keep Roxas with him night and day without concealment.
At first, Roxas was very little use as an apprentice. He had a child's lack of natural understanding – he did not understand "fragile" or "hot" or "sharp" until he learned the hard way. Axel, however, was never annoyed by little mishaps. On the contrary, they made Roxas seem even more charming and adorable to him.
Roxas also continued to "grow." He made a habit of breathing, and it eventually became unconscious. He did not need to eat, at first, until he concentrated hard one night and made himself hungry. He likewise did not need sleep, until Axel began to worry about him and he concentrated again – and for his efforts, he was rewarded with a frighteningly sudden wave of exhaustion. Having never slept before, Roxas was quite sleepy.
Many of his new experiences, in fact, brought Roxas some discomfort or trouble. Being alive was hardly a pain-free existence…yet for each unpleasantness there always seemed to be an even greater reward. Food was delicious, sleep was heavenly and made mornings seem even more beautiful, and each reward was colored with Axel's bright smile. It seemed that every effort Roxas made to seem more human was a delight to the toymaker, and therefore it was more than worth the struggle for Roxas.
Winter had not yet broken her frozen hold over Berlin, but the calendar promised that spring was growing nearer – and at last, Roxas had occasion to ask, "Axel, what is love?"
The toymaker inhaled sharply, looking up from his workbench. "Why do you ask, Roxas?"
"I heard a child in the store tell his mother he loved her. What is it?" The familiar tilt of his head made Axel smile.
"Love is a feeling, Roxas."
"What is a feeling?" A blink.
"A feeling is…hmm. A kind of mood…or something you sense in your heart. Like…happiness. You know happiness, yes?"
A smile and a nod. "Yes, I know happiness. Happiness is when Axel is happy."
Axel flushed slightly. "That is one feeling. Have you never felt any others?"
Frowning, Roxas pondered this for a long moment. "What is the opposite of happiness?"
"Sadness, I think," Axel answered.
"I think I have felt sadness sometimes…when I am trying to get the happiness back. But it doesn't stay long." He smiled. "Axel is happy again, so I'm happy."
"Well," Axel cleared his throat, "there are many more feelings apart from those two. Some are nice, like happiness, and some are not nice, like sadness. Love is one of the feelings."
Another thoughtful pause. "Is love more like happiness or sadness?"
Gazing across the bench at Roxas, Axel's eyes became suddenly lonely. He still smiled, but there was a touch of sorrow in his smile. "Love is even better than happiness. Love is the greatest happiness in the whole world. Sometimes it makes you sad, but love is wonderful even at those times. Love is the most beautiful feeling." Then he rose to put away a toy and, in passing Roxas, hesitated. His hand came up to rest in the boy's golden hair, which he stroked gently before cupping his precious face. He bent and placed a kiss on Roxas' nose, then returned to work without a word.
Blinking, Roxas took all this in. He did not understand the sudden gesture, but he knew that Axel's tender kisses on his nose, forehead, and cheeks often meant he was happy…yet something in his eyes seemed unhappy in that moment. It puzzled and troubled Roxas. He did not know what to make of Axel's mood, and thus he did not know how to feel himself. Unfortunately for Roxas, confusion was its own sadness – anything other than the assurance of Axel's complete happiness was not enough for the former doll.
He continued to ponder the question in his heart, and that night, he lay beside Axel and watched him sleep, still wondering at the complex mystery of human feelings. It seemed clear to him that, even after all this time, there were many things about humans that he did not understand. This too, seemed like something important – it affected Axel's happiness, and therefore Roxas'. Even more, Axel could not clearly explain it for him. So…he would have to learn it for himself.
Concentrating hard, Roxas began another change. Over and over he thought, "I am a human, and I have human feelings. I am a living human in every way, with a human heart. I am a human, not a doll, I am purely, completely human."
This time, the tingling of change was not a tingle at all. It was like a bolt of both "hot" and "sharp" at the same time – those very unpleasant lessons he had learned some time ago, now combined and piercing deep into his chest all at once. Roxas squeezed his eyes shut and clenched his hands over his chest. His body felt like it was breaking, tearing, and twisting inside. For several minutes, he bore the pain – for pain it was – in silence, and then it finally began to fade. Roxas exhaled and opened his eyes.
The moment his eyes rested on Axel – who slept with his arm draped around Roxas' waist – Roxas knew what love was, and he knew why Axel had acted so strangely that day in the workshop. The memories of so many other, similar moments all flooded into his mind, and he knew, knew for certain – Axel loved him.
Realizing the truth of Axel's love overwhelmed him, and a warm, powerful rush of emotion swelled within him immediately. Yet this time, it was not a feeling he gained from Axel's happiness or sadness – it was Roxas' own feeling, created within his own heart. It was his own…love. He felt it and recognized it at once – he loved Axel. For who he was, his kindness and his care – Roxas loved him. It wasn't an automatic response to Axel's heart – that had been all his doll's heart was once capable of, but not so anymore. Roxas knew that now. He felt the difference and understood.
No one in the world mattered the way Axel did. No one could ever replace him or become as precious to Roxas as Axel was. Roxas loved him desperately, completely, and although Axel's happiness still mattered to him more than anything else, there was a new surge of something within Roxas, too. A demanding feeling that wanted more – not for Axel, but for himself. Roxas wasn't sure what he wanted, precisely, but he knew that he wanted Axel, and only Axel would satisfy the craving in his heart.
Lying beside Axel, Roxas gazed at the man's cherished, familiar face and struggled to make sense of his desire. He stared at Axel's closed eyes, and he wished they would open and smile at him. Then his eyes lingered over the sleeping man's lips, and Roxas remembered so many soft kisses Axel had given him…yet that memory, though sweet, left him feeling unsatisfied. With his new awareness, each kiss somehow seemed different to him – not a simple expression of Axel's happiness, but…something else. And Roxas yearned to know what that something was.
Snuggling closer, he let his fingers touch and trace Axel's face – including his lips. Wondering, wishing…and then his breath caught in his chest as Axel's eyelids fluttered, he moaned softly, and he blinked at Roxas sleepily.
"Roxas? Why are you awake? Is something wrong?"
Struggling to express the new, intense feelings inside him, Roxas blurted out, "I want a kiss."
Axel blinked again in surprise, then smiled and yawned. "Oh, a kiss? Certainly, my prince." And he leaned forward to place a little peck on the tip of Roxas' nose.
Even as he felt it, Roxas knew it wasn't right. "No…" he muttered, and before Axel could draw back, he lifted his face, moving so that Axel's kiss no longer touched his nose. Their lips met, and Roxas pressed eagerly into the contact. A muffled noise of surprise came from Axel as the man tried to draw back, but Roxas followed, insistent. Now that he felt the warmth of Axel's lips against his own and the rushing pleasure that touch brought, he didn't want it to ever end.
Finally, however, Axel pulled himself free. He looked a bit shocked by Roxas' behavior. "Roxas, what are you…?"
"I love you." He spoke the words right over Axel's question, and the moment he said them, he knew how right they were. "I love you, Axel," Roxas repeated, softer. "I understand love, now, and I know that all my love is for you."
"Roxas…" Axel breathed, in awe.
"Will you give your love to me as well?" The former doll asked, a little worry entering his voice. A moment ago, he'd been so certain that he already had it, but now, speaking his feelings, Roxas realized that he needed Axel to confess his love in return, or he would never feel secure.
Eyes wide, Axel stared at his Prince Roxas. Everything was so sudden…yet the direct question demanded an answer. Axel thought back over his time with Roxas, remembering his first sight of the doll once he was finished. Yes, that…I was captivated, then. Then he looked up at the breathing, speaking, thinking, feeling boy who shared his life now, and thought of the tilt of Roxas' head when he was curious, or the dedicated way he tried to learn toymaking, oblivious to the irony of a former doll being taught the trade. Axel smiled. "You already have my love, Roxas. My feelings for you have grown deeper every day. If you will accept my heart, it is yours forever."
Warm, salt tears – real tears – welled up in Roxas' eyes and trickled down his cheeks at Axel's words. He couldn't speak…and Axel's eyes widened, his hands reaching up to touch Roxas' face.
"Roxas…you're crying." Roxas sniffled as Axel cupped his cheeks. "You feel…" His hands moved again, touching him, gently but firmly exploring his body. "You feel…real." The amazement in Axel's eyes made Roxas laugh through his tears.
"I think…I am real, Axel." He lay a hand over Axel's, pressed against his chest. "I've changed. I'm human…can you feel it?"
Heart racing, Axel let his hands explore a little further. The body he touched was no longer solid underneath the skin – Roxas' heartbeat resonated from within a chest which rose and fell with each breath. Muscles yielded beneath his touch, and when Axel wrapped Roxas in his arms and hugged him tight, he felt his own tears welling up as the truth struck him fully. Roxas was real. His beautiful prince was alive, and Axel was in love with him.
Roxas' lips were warm and responsive when Axel kissed him, and his flavor was wonderfully sweet. Unable to resist, Axel pressed closer, tasting his lovely prince. Arms around his neck encouraged him, and Axel pushed Roxas down on the bed and kissed him breathless.
It took a great effort of his will to break away from the intoxicating pleasure of kissing Roxas, but Axel, fearful of pushing too far, managed to draw back at last and look down on his prince. The fair face was flushed…and Roxas had never looked so beautiful. His arms pulled down on Axel's neck as he panted, "More…more…don't stop…!"
"Roxas," he gasped in return, "you don't know…what you're asking for. I can't control…"
"More!" Roxas insisted, his lips reaching for Axel's, tempting him, weakening his resolve with each clinging caress. "Don't…mmmh…withdraw from me. Please give me your love, Axel…all your love." Axel trembled, still trying to regain his calm – even as Roxas shredded his restraint with each heated whisper. "I love you, Axel, I love you…please show me your love. I want to feel it so much…more than anything."
Overcome, Axel moaned as Roxas arched against him. His hands betrayed him, caressing the breathing torso beneath him, and all Axel could do now was beg, "Oh my prince…please, please stop me if I do anything you do not like. Do not hesitate to speak if you are unhappy," he murmured, sliding his hands under Roxas' nightclothes and lifting them away. "I fear hurting you more than anything, and I am not brave enough to touch you until I know you will not bear anything in silence, Roxas."
But the half-undressed boy only embraced him, whispering his vow in Axel's ear, "I swear it, Axel. You will not hurt me. I love you."
Unable to bear the childlike sweetness of his lover's words, his gestures, everything, Axel finally broke. His control abandoned him as he clasped Roxas in his arms and kissed him passionately, his hands exploring the perfect living body beneath him and revealing more and more of it. Flooded with desire, he kissed Roxas' face, his neck, his shoulders and clavicles, his lovely chest, his tempting nipples, his smooth stomach, the arch of his hips – and in the process, Axel shed his own clothing and…removed the last articles which Roxas wore. They were both left bare, nude before the other's gaze, and Axel could have wept at the sight of the young man his doll had become. Even in his most delirious fantasies, he had never imagined that Roxas' human form would look like this.
With breathless reverence, he touched Roxas intimately, wondering at the heat of him, the shape in his hand…and the aroused response to his touch. "I did not make this for you," he whispered, brushing his fingers over the form of the former doll's new member.
A gasp. "No…" Roxas panted, "you did not…" He writhed slightly as the light touches become firmer, increasing his body's arousal. "I had not even noticed it there until…a few moments ago." Hazy blue eyes smiled at him. "I'm not sure why…but when you touch me there, it feels wonderful. Better than anything else."
With this encouragement, Axel dared to grasp Roxas fully and stroke his erect member slowly – delighting to see Roxas embracing wave after wave of pleasure. He did not seem frightened by the new feelings, though they must be very fast and sudden for him, and anyone else might easily draw back in confusion. But Roxas did not even hesitate – he openly expressed his welcome of each sensation with delicious sounds and sweet encouragement, and Axel loved him even more for his trusting nature.
Realizing something, Axel groaned with regret as he drew back, murmuring, "Wait one moment, Roxas. I must get something." Then he dragged himself off the bed and crossed the room quickly, shivering as he searched the top of his bureau for the little bottle of rose oil. It was generally used in small amounts for dry skin, but Axel needed it for something more important tonight. He returned to the bed with it in hand, but stopped short, gazing in amazement at the boy lying there, waiting for him.
Every inch of Roxas' pale, soft skin shone in the moonlight, while blue eyes looked back at him and ran over his body, shining. "Axel…come closer? Let me see you…" The sweet request made him swallow, but Axel obeyed, climbing onto the bed and kneeling beside Roxas. The adoring eyes explored slowly, but lingered the most over his member. "This part of you has grown very large," Roxas whispered, a little shyly. Still, he did not withdraw – in fact, he seemed fascinated by Axel's arousal, and reached out toward him, carefully touching him. Axel gasped as those hands brushed over his heated skin, fingers wrapping around him as Roxas leaned closer.
"Your manhood is…so warm…" His prince murmured, moments before his lovely lips pressed the head in a sweet, innocent kiss. Axel groaned, but more kisses followed, and he could not tell Roxas to stop. Instead, he reached for his lover's arousal again. His hands slid between Roxas' legs and rubbed gently several times before he grasped him and began to stroke. Roxas' hips jerked into the touch and he fell back with a gasp. He tried, at first, to return the pleasure – his smaller hand wrapped more fully around Axel's arousal, mimicking Axel's movements as he stroked him in return. For several moments, they gave each other pleasure this way…but Roxas, who had no experience with lovemaking at all, was sooner rendered helpless by the mounting sensations. Axel was relieved when Roxas released his member, gasping and writhing on the bed before him – he had been close to losing control, and he did not desire his climax to come before he could be joined to his love.
Settling himself between Roxas' legs, Axel opened the bottle and poured a little oil over his lover's member, letting it trickle down between his legs. He spread it with his fingers, massaging over the unbreached ring of Roxas' entrance. Adding more oil, he began to work a single finger inside, caressing within Roxas and moaning helplessly at the exquisite heat which gripped his finger so tightly. Before he could stop himself, he had taken Roxas' manhood between his lips and filled his mouth with the intimate taste of him. Fluid leaked from the tip in anticipation, and Axel greedily gathered it with his tongue as he worked his oiled fingers deeper inside Roxas.
Sweet cries filled his ears as he prepared Roxas' body, and every sound made Axel more desperate than before. Roxas was clearly nearing his peak, and seeing him feeling such intense pleasure was enough to badly strain Axel's control. He yearned to be joined to Roxas – it was the unspoken desire he had tried to resist all this time, because it was a dark and dirty thing to imagine when Roxas was still a toy, unable to desire such a thing for himself. But now that he was human and begging Axel for more, urging him on with every breath, Axel's desires no longer felt shameful – his love made his need for Roxas beautiful, and he knew their joining would fill him with unbearable happiness.
At last, he could no longer wait. Roxas had relaxed, and his body yielded to Axel's touch, now. Removing his fingers, he positioned himself over Roxas, murmuring softly, "My love…I belong to you. All of me."
Gasping and reaching for him, Roxas could only manage, "Yes…Axel, yes…"
Gently, Axel answered Roxas' welcome, pressing forward into his lover's heated body. Oil-soaked softness closed around his arousal slowly. The tight clasp of Roxas' body made him gasp with delight, yet there was no resistance. Trembling with desire, Roxas relaxed, opening to his penetration. When he was fully within Roxas, Axel paused, bending over his prince and kissing him, worshiping his lips, holding his lovely face in both of his shaking hands.
"Axel, ahh! You…" Roxas' spoke against his lips, panting. "Inside…inside me. I can, ohhhh I can feel you, Axel, oh please…!" His arms wound around Axel's shoulders, pulling him closer with a strength that almost surprised him. "Please, more! I love…nnnnh love you, Axel, m-more!"
Moaning deeply, Axel could hardly speak. The only answer he could form was Roxas' name – whispered over and over in blissful adoration as he obeyed Roxas' urging and began to make love to him. He thrust within Roxas, then thrust again, taking great care not to hurt him, gradually building his force and speed. All his long-buried passion for Roxas burned within him, destroying his resolve to be tender. He could not withhold himself from Roxas anymore – not when the painfully lovely young man cried out in ecstasy, his body arching to meet Axel's every thrust and take him deeper. He could not do anything other than give himself up to Roxas completely, making love to him with everything he had and everything he was, and caring for nothing else in the world – because only his Roxas mattered.
The climax of their lovemaking tore through them both at last, leaving Axel a shuddering mess as he spilled his release within his lover's body. Roxas, for his part, seemed surprised – his blue eyes went wide as he gasped, the sensations of climax taking him by storm. Even after Axel had pulled himself together enough to part from Roxas' body, the former doll still seemed somewhat stunned by the whole experience.
"I had…no idea…" he breathed, still panting. Axel tenderly wiped Roxas' body clean before lying down beside him, pulling the smaller man close and kissing him.
"You aren't…hurt, are you?" He murmured into damp golden hair. "Your body…"
Smiling weakly at him, Roxas silenced that worry. "My body feels wonderful. I am in a heaven I never knew existed before tonight. I love you so very much, Axel."
Giving himself away in another deep, lingering kiss, Axel answered Roxas' love with all of his own. And he knew from that moment that he would continue loving Roxas more every day of his life, and every time he found more love in his heart, he would lavish it upon Roxas again. Forever.
The weeks and months passed swiftly, after that. Spring came, bringing beauty Roxas had never known, and joy for Axel who shared it with him for the first time of many. The toymaker and his apprentice lived quietly together, very much in love, and no one troubled them about it. Axel supposed that no one really noticed, except perhaps Tifa, who proved herself an even better clerk than he could have hoped for…by holding her peace on the subject.
Summer followed Spring, and Autumn after that, and each season brought new joys for them both. Their first Christmas together as lovers was a quiet, private celebration – and a cherished time for both of them.
Roxas remained fully human, without ever relinquishing even one fraction of his human heart – not even when the emotions it gave him were painful. They were a part of life, and he accepted the good with the bad – because Axel's love was a thousand times worth it. The anniversary of his miraculous meeting with the fairy passed, and Roxas did not even remember it until several weeks later. When he realized the time had gone and he was human permanently…he shrugged, smiled, and forgot about it again. It hardly mattered now. He would never go back, never give up Axel.
It had been obvious from the beginning.
Note to readers! Hey guys! If you read this because you're into Axel and Roxas and that's pretty much it, well...thanks! I hope you liked it! :D But if you also wonder if this Kurosora1984 lady has anything else to entertain you, and if you are even a little interested in other guys getting their sexy romance on, check out my current original story on FP! Links in my profile! Thank you, dears! :D