Guilt, an Artemis Fowl Fanfic

Summary: What if Artemis wasn't rid of the Atlantis Complex completely? Holly goes to visit her favorite Mud Boy one day and finds out what is really going on inside the genius' mind… ArtemisxHolly

A/N: Hey, it's been quite a while since my last story. I have a few more planned for AF as well as an I Pod drabble challenge I've always wanted to do. This was written about a month ago but I had lost the notebook it was written in. Yay for finding it! Also, I wrote this in a real hurry just to get it out of my head, so it should be a bit horrible. Maybe I'll delete it later.

Unbeta-ed once again. I actually am looking for a beta so if anyone's interested message me please!

Disclaimer: I don't own Artemis Fowl. But that's ok, nobody can do it like Colfer anyway.

Artemis Fowl was cured. In theory. At least that's what everyone thought. Only the boy himself could know just how screwed up his mind was. So there was nothing that could have prepared Holly for the sight her eyes met at her surprise visit to the Fowl Manor.

After getting sick and tired of doing paperwork all week Captain Holly Short had decided to take a day off and a refreshing trip to the surface. She hadn't talked to Artemis for a while anyway, so it was a good way to check up on him. She only hoped it was worth the five hour wait she had been forced to endure at the port to Tara. Apparently her badge didn't make much difference when she was off duty.

The manor was unusually quiet when she entered, shield still on, seeing as anyone could be here. She hadn't exactly informed them about her visit, a decision she was seriously beginning to regret. As she went deeper into the dimly lit house, the grim family portraits combined with the silence sending chills down her spin, a noise was starting to become audible. For a while she couldn't place it. Soon enough though, she realized it was the sound of things breaking and smashing, glass being the most common and characteristic one of all.

Then there was the voice. It was distantly familiar but with a tone of both rage and agony that the elf had never associated with the person it belonged to before. "Artemis?" she murmured, too quietly for him to have a chance of hearing her. Especially with the noise he was making. The sounds indeed led to his study. The door was left slightly open.

Holly knew it was wrong to spy on her friend, but what she could hear coming from that room worried her to no end. So ignoring the immorality of her actions, she sneaked a peek from the open door. She had to bite back a gasp at the sight.

The great Artemis Fowl II, who was always so composed and serious was wearing an expression of sheer emotional pain and regret, his pale cheeks gleaming with what seemed suspiciously like half dried tear tracks. He looked utterly horrible, his hair disheveled, his clothes a mess. The coin Holly had given him so long ago was tied with a string around his neck so tightly it had to be choking him.

The smashing sound she had heard were the dozens of books and other items he had thrown around in a desperate fit of anger. As if on cue, the moment she realized that, Artemis pushed whatever had remained on his desk down, while the tears slowly began to flow again. Why would he care anyway? There wasn't supposed to be anyone in the house.

"Liar, LIAR!" he yelled as he relieved his desk of his stuff, his voice catching slightly from the string tightened around his neck. The boy was panting, trying to get enough oxygen between his shouts. "Liar, you thief! Unworthy… so unworthy…" his voice trailed off to a sad murmur while he fought to calm himself down.

Holly didn't even realize her hands had flown to her mouth until she tried to speak and her words ended up muffled. "Artemis?" she tried again whilst unshielding, hesitant yet surprisingly calm considering the situation. "Artemis, what's wrong?"

He froze mid-breath. Artemis hadn't realized he had an unexpected visitor. "H-Holly?" he asked shakily.

"Last time I checked," she let out an awkward chuckle. The elf was a bit out of her depth. She had never seen Artemis act this way. Even so she cautiously took a step closer to him.

"What are you doing here?"

It was her turn to stammer. Her excuse would be good for a happy scenario, but not so much for walking in on a private moment of this kind. Especially one of a person who tended not to show weakness in front of others. "I-I had a day off… Thought I'd drop by… I'm sorry, I… I didn't…" She briefly wondered where Butler was, when his charge obviously needed him so much.

Artemis audibly gulped. "How long have you been standing there?"

"Long enough." She said, unsure of how to answer in a way that wouldn't aggravate him further. The boy simply nodded in cold acceptance. "Artemis, look at me. Look at me."

With some hesitation, he turned around and the one pair of mismatched eyes found the other. Only neither had ever been so pained and… guilty. It hit Holly then. What had brought up this whole thing.

"You were never cured, were you? Of the Atlantis Complex, I mean."

"I got rid of some of the compulsions and Orion, I believe. However, the guilt. It's still there," he admitted.

She gently placed her hands on his shoulders before she spoke, never breaking eye contact. "Artemis, why didn't you say anything?"

His bitter chuckle made her flinch. "What could you have done?"

"We could have continued the therapy sessions, help you…"

"IT WOULDN'T HAVE WORKED!" The human snapped.

Holly backed off a bit, trying in vain to hide her shock. She couldn't understand. How could she? Artemis had seemed fine, just fine. Yet now here he was, close to breaking down in front of her.

"Holly…" he sighed, shoulders slumped in defeat. "The guilt I'm carrying… Nobody can cure it." He was biting hard on his lower lip, hard enough to draw blood from it. He paid no mind to it though as his eyes were cast down in shame.

"Artemis, Arty…" Holly began and her own voice came out a bit shaky. "You have nothing to be guilty about. Nothing. Everyone makes mistakes."

"How can you say that? I lied to everyone. Everyone, Holly, everyone! I lied to Butler, I lied to my family and I lied to you, Holly. I lied to you. I kidnapped you."

"I've already forgiven you for that!" She yelled in exasperation. The boy looked so much like the sixteen-year-old he really was and a vulnerable one at that. It was tearing her heart apart.

"How? How could you forgive me?"

"I care about you! Besides, if you hadn't kidnapped me, I wouldn't have met you. And I am glad I met you, Artemis."

"I can't believe that…" he sighed and turned away from her.

And Artemis look so fragile and Holly had to find a way to convince him. So she did something she had wanted to do ever since their time travel.

She leaned in and kissed him.

For a second he was shocked at hesitated, but he managed to recover quickly and return the kiss with movements so gentle that surprised Holly. When they broke apart, the boy had a trademark smug expression on his face. Holly tried to suppress a grin of success.

"I thought you said my elf kissing days were over?" Artemis questioned, pointedly raising an eyebrow.

"See? You're not the only one who lies."

OK, this was bad. I hope my next one is better. I realize the kiss was a bit rushed, but I had the last line in my head so clearly that I had to put it there. Sorry. Still, please be a good reader and post a review so I know you were here! Thanks