A/N: I am truly sorry for the long wait! Time ran against me and our psychology teacher gave us loads of tasks to do, plus, getting grounded for failing math was a huge hit on my ego that I became the vindictive author of this story. Anyway, shippers of Fire Flower and Alexius would actually love this story. I focused more on romance here, so *imitates Scar from the Lion King Series* Be prepare~d!
Zero: You know that the people would obviously get bored because of the long intro, right?
Me: Just get on with it, you mutt!
Zero: Excuse me? Don't group me with those furry dogs that turn into humans –
Me: *opens VK fanbook* According to your bio, you love animals, so, I guess you're pretending to hate it, ri~ght?
Me: Fine. I disclaim any shit I've made except for some characters that are OC. Speaking of Alexius and Fire Flower, now get me something to eat like tacos!
Chapter 04: Winter and Summer Combined
Alexius Fulgoris Chase Tallyn
Dizziness... that was the first thing I felt when I took that damn potion, and then a slight pain in the head that turned into a feeling of a jackhammer smashing my skull to pieces. It was not a very good feeling.
Slowly, I began to awaken into a world I never even have been into. The surroundings were all swirls of clouds with the mingled darkness.
"Where am I?" I muttered more to myself.
I slowly trudged up a path and saw three doors appearing. One was crystal-like with very fascinating motifs, the other one was made purely of wood with the same motifs, only in a more different style while the one between the two was a mixture of both. As I loomed closer, I heard a very strange yet familiar voice. Ash's voice.
"Choose," he said, "whether to become the prince of winter," and then mom's voice, "or the prince of summer. You have to choose either and never choose both, for choosing both will lead you to your destruction."
"Humph," I said, choosing the straight path and said strongly, "I choose my own path whether you like it or not. You don't control me and my destiny."
My breathing began to hitch. What is beyond this door?
I slowly turned the knob, and what awaited me were two entities: one was a beautiful maiden covered in ice, her face devoid of emotion. Glittering light passed through her pale skin and her eyes were ice-cold blue.
The other one was a man in all of his eminence. He was dark-skinned with golden hair and his eyes were full of life.
"So, I have to fight the two of you?" I asked, getting pissed.
The woman nodded, "Naturally."
I'm not bragging or anything, but I was pretty good at fencing. It was a style that mom forcefully made me learn. As time flew, I began to love and crave for more lessons, and I learned how to parry and to evade attacks. This could be sweet in a chilling and hot way, no pun intended, Faery people.
A table appeared in the center. Walking towards it, I examined the weapons and myself enamoured by the glistening rapier, my choice of a weapon.
I turned to the two and said, "Let the Hunger Games begin."
Damn, how I love that line.
The woman made a very seductive stance and flew icicles my way, which I dodge and rolled at the side. The man started to uproot plants from below to encompass me, but I was too quick to evade.
Power... I said to myself, I need power, and ice and summer would suffice.
I drew my breath, and slowly I formed a barricade of ice around me. The moment the woman starts throwing icicles, trying to uproot me with more icicles, the shield protected me from any abuse I could attain.
... except that I forgot about the man, who tied me up with a very thick vine that made it hard for me to escape.
I struggled as the vines began to wrap around me, closing slowly with surprise. How was he able to penetrate my barrier? Are summer fey really this powerful?
"Surrender," the man smirked joyfully.
"I..." I began stammering, "am not... gonna lose! I promised myself... to mom... to uncle..."
I closed my eyes and tried thinking of a way out of my suffocation, but only one thing appeared in my head: Fire Flower. Her eyes of anger, her smile, her smugness and her blushing face; what I would give to actually tell her about my feelings if I were able to see her for the last time.
Resolve burst as flames from within me began to churn. My hand started making symbols and the plants that entangled me slowly descended and loosened. Arrogant as I am, I brushed my sleeves off and said, "That went well, don't you think?" I aimed the smirk towards the two entities that didn't look happy at my taunting at all.
I took a stance with my rapier and said, "Now that I passed the magic test, shall we begin, mademoiselle and miseur?"
"I'll go first," the woman said coldly, forming a crystal weapon with her hand, and within that moment, I regret taunting her. She made a brandishing gesture and it made me regret even more, for her form was more graceful than mine.
"Oh, crap," I said.
We started slashing against with each other. I parried the broad sword and guarded myself with another parry.
I closed my eyes and felt myself through the attacks and I found it amazing that I could see through them in the dark. I brought down my weapon on the exact moment the woman came to me. The entity of the girl yelled in pain and I felt a chilling sweetness entering me. I opened my eyes and saw the girl no more.
I turned my blade towards the man seriously and repressed a smirk.
"Your turn, hot stuff," I said.
The man was even harder to deal with. His style was unpredictable and he could block my attacks, and my adrenaline started to wane.
Maybe he wasn't just standing there, I thought. Maybe he was watching my every move, calculating my combos, and reading my skills. Maybe I could switch tactics from offence to defence.
I began to block. The summer dude made a slash on my side, but I evaded it with a side-step, and then came with another stab, and it narrowly missed my shoulder.
I continued to dodge numbly, but repeating the move twice was to my disadvantage. The summer fey had keen eyes and could calculate my every move. This made me smirk, because I haven't used my trump card yet. Forming a stance, I let go of my anxiety and my want to win. I only thought of this scene as my life, hanging on the scale towards death.
I jumped as high as my fey legs could and brought down the weapon. The fey was taken aback and I brandished my weapon downwards and heat caressed through my body.
Slowly, I began to drift back to wherever I was drifting to.
Alexius... Alexius... Lex, sweetie?
I opened my eyes. I was on a very uncomfortably soft bed with pillows surrounding me. Mom was wiping away the traces of beady sweat that traced down my skin. On my other side were my uncle, Ash and Fire Flower. She was sleeping and – what's this? She's holding my hand? How queer... somehow, this made me happy, despite the pain I've been feeling around my body.
"Whazzapened?" I yawned.
Fire Flower instantly shoot up and she yelled instantly, "You reckless, show-off, and arrogant, narcissistic, anti-climatic, sarcastic, good-looking son of a half-witted kelpie!" She kept on pounding when Ash grimaced, "Apparently, I wonder where he inherited that?" while uncle snickered in one corner.
"He's not that stupid," mom said with sparkles in her eyes. "He's just...unconscious of his recklessness."
"Yeah, take a chill pill, fire girl," uncle grinned, "'cuz your little romantic feelings for Lex would be unnoticed."
Fire Flower instantly reddened.
"O...okay," I said, unsure of what to say.
Mom shook her head, "The prince of both Seelie and Unseelie court, having a romantic moment with the Seelie court's guardian. This sort of reminds me of the time before you were even born, Lex."
"Nurgle," I said randomly just to cue in mom of how desperate I am to keep her stories to herself.
"Get some rest," Ash said, placing a chilly hand on my head.
Everyone walked out of the room, and I was left there, staring at the ceiling with its sparkling chandelier.
A few hours later, drowsiness still hasn't claimed me, I wrapped a comforter around me and I wandered out of my room and saw Grim the Cat, purring softly near one of the fireplace with Fire Flower, who was on the floor, her legs supporting her arms and her head. Gently, I took off my comforter and wrapped it around her body.
I gazed at her and noticed something I haven't noticed before. Her hair was shiny amidst the dim light, and her small pink lips were slightly open to release warm, summer breath.
My heart began to thud. Something felt strange. It was as if my heart wanted to bounce out of my chest at that instant, sending shivers down my spine. It was a feeling that made me want to touch her and caress her.
But I wouldn't.
I walked up back the flight of stairs and resumed my thoughtful sleep and found myself in deep slumber.
By the time I woke up, bright sunlight filtered through the window of the bedroom and warm tea with deliciously scented food was placed on a tray beside my bed. Realizing it too late, my stomach rumbled in hunger and I began to chew on my food hungrily. It was chewy and semi-crispy, the type you want to munch on forever.
I ended my feast and got up from my place. I searched from mom and found her having a chat with Ash.
"He still has to choose, Meghan," Ash's voice swept around the place icily in a warm manner. "He can't be a prince of both worlds without being a threat to Mab. He'll be hunted down. I don't want that to happen."
"He's just a boy," mom said in a dangerous voice.
Ash countered her with a chilling tone, "Yes, but you were only a girl when you chose to kill Machina to save the fey. His only difference is a year of a gap, but, as I see it, he has experience when it comes to fights."
I heard the shuffling of cloths. Getting sick of the eavesdropping, I knocked on the door and cleared my throat. "Mom, have you seen my iPod? I think I kind of misplaced it again."
"Lex," she said, startled. She rushed towards me and encompassed me in her warmth. "It's so good that you've recovered. How are you?" She started placing a hand on my neck, on my head, on my cheeks, or wherever she could reach.
I pulled away, "Mom, I'm fine." I looked around there room and spotted him. I just nodded and he gave me the same, curt nod I gave him.
"How long are we staying here?" I asked.
"Until Lea gets the information we bargained for," mom said stiffly. Damn, she must have really loved that necklace to want to keep it forever.
I turned and glared at Ash, "And him?"
"The animosity is neutral," Ash stated, and I ignored him.
"Will you two stop it already?" mom sighed, exasperated. "Ash, he's your son, and take note of that, please. Lex, he's your father –"
"Biologically, not in a literal sense," I mumbled.
"Fine, I'll address him as 'dad'," I threw up my arms, "but that doesn't mean that I acknowledge his presence."
I stormed out of the room, feeling moody and sat by the fireplace where Grimalkin was licking his fur. He nodded nonchalantly, "I see a very dark future in your family. Don't you like the ice prince?"
"As much as I love toads," I said simply.
Grim disappeared to be followed by the appearance of Fire Flower.
"What happened to you?" she asked.
I shook my head and leaned against the wall limply. My body slid down and I was soon on the floor, feeling helpless.
"Hey," Fire Flower said cautiously, "Are you alright?"
She approached me with caution and placed a gentle hand on my shoulder. She slowly lifted up my head and pressed it against her chest saying softly, "I might hate you from time to time because of that high and mighty attitude of yours, but that doesn't mean I'm not here for you to talk to."
I began to let out a string of sniffs that turned to cries. I clutched Fire Flower's chest and I felt her tighten her hug around me.
We sat there for hours on end, and I consciously took her hand into mine. She didn't flinch so I took it as a good sign. I raised it to trace my lips and she hitched a breath. Slowly, I nipped her finger and she gasped. I changed tack and pressed her against the wall and to anticipate her, I stared into her crimson eyes.
And then my lips were on hers.
"There's a room for a make-out session, you know."
"Shit," I cussed, pulling myself away from Fire Flower, who blushed the same color I did.
Uncle was smirking and he jumped up and down, chanting, "Lex and Fire sitting on the floor, making out –"
"Uncle Robbie!" I glared while Fire Flower said in unison, "Puck, shut up!"
"What's with all the commotion?" mom's voice suddenly chimed in. Fire and I instantly looked around and saw mom and her prince walking down the flight of stairs and she eyed our tomato-red faces.
"The two were making out," uncle instantly replied and I shot him a glare.
"What?" mom blinked.
"It wasn't like that," I pleaded, but Fire Flower silenced me and stepped forward. She bowed to mom and 'dad' and said, "It was my fault, your excellencies. I took advantage of him at the wrong time. We were talking about something trivial and then I told him things."
Mom just stood there. After a while, she said reluctantly, "This...make out session..."
Oh, boy. Here comes the grand finale.
"... was it just a kiss or did you two touch each other in places –"
"MOM! There's a limit to how much you could say out loud," I flinched and Ash chuckled.
"Yeah, it was just a kiss," uncle replied for me, "but they were close to one another."
I saw this look on mom that says, "Uh-oh. Time for a premarital sex pep talk."
But, come to think of it, she wasn't even married when she had me, so, isn't it a win-win scenario?
Apparently, that was not something mom would just scoff off.
"Premarital tutelage, incoming," uncle chimed, bouncing around happily.
Fire Flower instantly took my hand into hers, and she was blushing scarlet while looking at me sheepishly.
Somehow, getting punished for something you did but earning something else in return seemed to end my day well. Despite my fear of mom's scolding, Fire Flower's warm hand reassured me that, no matter what, she will stand by me, despite Ash's glaring efforts at trying to warn the summer fey away from me.
Now, all we have to do was wait for Lea. We need something from her, and she has to compensate for our prolonged staying in her Den of Exile.
A/N: See you guys soon in Ice and Summer Would Suffice Sequel~! Thank you to my readers, supporters, flamers (not really~) and to Julie Kagawa-sama~! Just add me to your author alert and the I will somehow update from time to time, if I could. No promises, but~... ^_^