Damn, it's been a while, oops. However, this is the end, well there is one last chapter you know the "_ amount of time later" epilogue. Although that is half typed so I should have that up soon, even though I'd said that before ^^;

Anyway this was a hard chapter to write, it brought up a lot of emotions and memories for me that I thought I could handle, but apparently not. Since I was going to add a lot more detail and such, but I couldn't bring myself to do so.

Well, enjoy the final chapter of tHE ARTist


Chapter 9

"Damn it! Fanboy give me back that photo album right this instant!" A laugh escaped Fanboy as he was chased down the steps by his very irritated boyfriend in to the shop area.

"Why do you have something to hide?" The younger man teased stopping in the middle of the floor to wave the book in the redhead's face.

"No!"

"You protest too much, now let's see here…"

"Fan!" the book fell to the floor several feet away from where the couple now lay sprawled. A bubbling laughter filled the room soon after realizing what had just happened.

"Really? You're an all-powerful necromancer and yet you thought to tackle me to the floor first?" A sly grin suddenly found it was on to Fanboy's face just as his hands found their way to the back of Kyle's thighs and began to creep up. "Although I do love this position, I didn't know you liked to be so forward."

"Oh do shut up."

"I think you'll have to make me."

"Ugh, I don't have time for this." Kyle rolled his eyes moving from his current position to stand only to find himself flipped over with Fanboy now straddling him. "Don't you have work to be doing?"

"I just want to see what the big deal is about that album then I'll get back to work."

"Some things are better left unknown, Fan."

"The more you say that the more I want to know." Fanboy reached over Kyle and grabbed one of the loose photos instantly bursting out in laughter.

"Oh shove off!" the redhead snapped pushing the laughing artist to the floor before moving to leave in yet another fit of anger.

"No wait, stay! I'm sorry but…" another fit of laughter tore through Fanboy as he looked at the picture yet again.

"You're such an ass!" However, it was only half-meant, laughter starting to escape the necromancer as well. "Look I might have been a bit of a partier in college, but it's not something to laugh about."

"Do you not see all the purple you're wearing? And that cap? You might as well have 'SWAG' written across your face and did you seriously smoke?"

"It was a long time ago, Fan and it was a nasty habit that I'm more than happy I kicked." Kyle sighed leaning against his boyfriend as they caught their breath.

"I wish I could have known you then."

"All that matters is that you get to know me now."

"It shouldn't have taken 10 years for me to be able to; I don't know if I'll be able to forgive myself even if you did." Fanboy frowned setting the picture down before continuing, "I mean Sigmund died because of me, you died because of me. There is blood on my hands that I can't wash away."

"It wasn't you, there is no blood on your hands, all of that blood is on mine and there will only be more. We've talked about this before."

"I'm sorry, I just…" Fanboy was quickly silenced by a kiss, the words dying on his tongue and his brain short-circuiting as Kyle pulled away. They hadn't shared a kiss like that in quite some time; in fact, Fanboy wasn't sure he could remember the last time Kyle had done anything like that.

"Enough excuses, one day you're going to realize that there was nothing you could do to prevent any of this and then you'll see what Death showed you were the only outcome possible."

"But you didn't see what he showed me."

"Thought does not stop after death, the soul continues on. I saw more than you could imagine during my time in the Veil and the spirits tell me more even now." A sly grin spread across Kyle's face, "And right now they're telling me that we have a lot of work to get done."

"Are you sure they're not relaying another message? A more pleasurable message perhaps?"

"I'm not that easy, at least not anymore." Fanboy chuckled watching the redhead sway his hips as he left the room before a second thought occurred.

"Wait! What do you mean not anymore?"

"You disgust me…all of you; do you really think that life is a game?" Fanboy stirred upon hearing the thundering voice, he sat up only to find himself surrounded by darkness horrified to see that it was only a dream that Kyle and him were together again.

"Kyle?"

"Ah so you're finally awake." Light flooded the area breaking through the shadows to reveal that he was not alone; Sigmund sat a mere 10 feet away stunned silent by the looming figure standing between them. The figure was now the only shadow remaining as endless light stretched out the horizon, but there was no sign of the necromancer.

"Where's Kyle?" Fanboy stood the redhead the only thing on his mind, he had lost him once and wasn't about to again.

"Demanding aren't you? Your lover is waiting at the Veil safe and sound, bound in the shadows that created him." The figure spoke softly turning its full attention on the artist as if judging him and the thought only made Fanboy stand straighter with a look of pure defiance on his face.

"I want to see him."

"You will, in time, I just wanted to know what is so special about you that made him give his life for yours 10 years ago. I mean neither of you knew what it meant to be in love, even beyond that you certainly didn't love him at the time."

"I asked him not to because of that reason."

"It was so much more than that, I know, because you ached for my touch. Nevertheless, he loved you enough so that it wouldn't matter that you wanted to die. Which leaves us with a little problem, he died for you once and since I needed him alive I allowed you to have his life and he is on borrowed time. However, for that to work he must have a reason to live, you are that reason, but he sacrificed himself for you once again even though he has no life to give me."

"So you want to make another deal then, you still need him." Sigmund spoke up after finally snapping out of his shock.

"Exactly, I can let two live for the price of one, only there's another problem, which of you is worthy, for love is just as strong as hate."

"Then let Sigmund live." Fanboy said after an unsettling moment of silence, looking up at Death as if challenging him to take any other action.

"What? I'm all for staying alive, but you should be the one to live." The two males stared at each other in disbelief. "You're the only one who can make him happy; I think the only reason he stayed for me was because he was really hoping for you."

"But you never hurt him like I did."

"I was the reason you forgot him, I'm the reason he had to suffer for 10 years and I watched him fall apart for those 10 years, always thinking for some stupid reason that his hatred of me would be just as good as my love for him."

"I hurt him long before you cast your spell and I regret that he saved me, hell I even regret that he fell in love with me to begin with. Because he didn't know who I was and it didn't help that I didn't know who was at the time."

"You weren't alone on that, he didn't know who he was at the time because you changed him and for the better I might add. He never forgot it either, who he was when he was with you."

"Look Sigmund-" Fanboy was quickly cut off the platinum blonde had moved forward and was quick to chin check him, violet eyes sharp as he spoke.

"No, you listen, Kyle has never stopped being in love with you, he was and is willing to forget every single asinine thing you have ever done or will do. That is more than he has ever done for anyone else, because the Kyle I know never believed in forgiveness or mercy and you changed that." Sigmund paused watching as his words began to sink in. "The only thing you didn't change was how he has always been able to see the beauty in broken things and the light in the shadows. There is a reason he fell in love with you. Understand?"

"I do." Death spoke before Fanboy even had a chance to muster a thought, "Do you realize the sacrifice you're about to make, Sigmund?"

"Yes and I accept it wholeheartedly."

"Wait, why are you doing this?" Cold shock washed over Fanboy, he was trying to believe that Sigmund was in fact taking his place, dying so that he and Kyle could live.

"It's time I paid my dues." The blonde replied simply turning away from Fanboy and walking towards the black shadows that had risen from the floor.

"Congratulations, you've won the happy ending you deserve." Death moved to block Fanboy's view of the sorcerer. Blackness swam across his vision, blending into Death and wiping out any trace of white, his mind too began to fade. The last words he heard before falling unconscious were, "Just remember that the next time you die, there is no going back."