A/N. Sorry if the update took quite long. I usually update like, after 10 months or something. Lol just kidding, but really I don't update that often and I don't usually write multi-chaptered ficcies so this is a surprising development. I'll try to update as fast as I can when I have the time. For now I'm studying for entrance exams so I can't publish anything after this update. But I hope you guys continue reading! :3

Rating: Still T! (smut is over there in the distance...!)

Disclaimer: No seriously, if I said I owned, I'd get shot. OH BUT IT WOULD BE WORTH IT TO HAVE MORE SOROKU SCENES IN THE GAMES *nosebleeds* And the picture is not mine~ It's from "illbewaiting", an artist at deviantart ;)


Vivid

Chapter 2

Roxas Strife liked being alone.

He's always despised people who would only talk to him because of his looks, or because he was related to DT University's infamous Art teacher, Cloud Strife. Roxas loved his brother, he really did. If it weren't for Cloud, he probably wouldn't have healed from those horrendous…scars of his. Heck, he even owed his own life to his dear brother for putting up with all that crap that had happened in the past. But whenever he was subjected to bouts of comparison and when people would often push different expectations on him, Roxas would sometimes find himself annoyed at the prospect of being the blonde teacher's younger brother.

And he becomes infuriated with those kinds of presumptuous people.

Who the heck did they think they were?

But other people were worse though. They would find him extremely appealing and would try to speak to him to test the waters, to test if they could become friends with him just so they could brag about having the younger brother of THE Cloud Strife as their friend.

People were so transparent.

There were many different reasons behind people befriending him, often really shallow ones like for popularity (a lot of girls and guys actually find him really good-looking), others just to make fun of him, and some really mad, loony, are-you-out-of-your-fucking-mind crazy ones like getting into his pants and rightfully bedding him (the crazy terms particularly apply to a few of the guys in school).

Those kinds of people were the worst, and were the reasons why he never really liked having a big clique. The blonde was considered by many as a nobody at the university, and ironically, he rather liked it that way. He was distant, and the only people he would let get close to him were his bestfriends Hayner, Pence and Olette. And probably some other guys from a few of his classes like Axel and Demyx. And that girl Xion, he definitely had a soft spot for the dark-haired girl.

They were the only ones whom he's shown his real emotions to, with whom he's laughed or joked with, or sulked and pouted to. He's never allowed any other person to get close to him, refusing to do anything remotely friendly towards other people simply because he doesn't want to get involved with anyone else. He's come off as stoic and indifferent towards others, while they reject really knowing him for all he's worth. They talk about him behind his back, compare in hushed whispers about how he doesn't seem like his older brother and that maybe he's a rotten egg or a spoiled child judging from his distant behavior.

Roxas doesn't really care.

Cloud always tries to push him to join some groups or clubs. He's told him before to join the Struggle team since he was gifted at the sport. He could even beat Hayner in a match if he was motivated enough, and that was saying something considering that the dirty blonde was captain of DTU's Struggle Team (they've consistently participated in the nationals). But some team members were dumb brutes, most especially that Setzer guy who could only attack with the size of his stupid head. Roxas knew that if he was pitted against the blue-haired egoist, the other would only be all bark and no bite. Even if he was an official member of the university team, the proud senior could have easily been overpowered by the blonde sophomore. And Roxas wasn't the type to brag about victories like that.

His older brother would always be concerned over him, and it gets a little wearisome trying to assure Cloud that he was alright and that everything about him was fine. It's just that he really likes to be alone most of the time, and that he's not the best at socializing. Add to the fact that he doesn't really want to interact with other people besides his usual circle of friends, Roxas feels that being alone is essential to him. He feels at peace with his loneliness. He was not emo, and no one should name him that because damn it he just wants his peace. Roxas likes to be alone because he needs time for himself.

So then, who was this random guy staring down at him?

The blonde had himself an intruder.

Roxas blinks at him innocently, his baby blue eyes meeting with widened, bright blue ones. The intruder suddenly pales, and he freezes in his spot as their eyes lock with each other's. Roxas feels a frown slightly tugging at his lips and fights it down. This person hasn't even talked to him and he's automatically assuming that the boy's like all the others, like he was one of those judgmental types that would immediately label him as a misplaced individual. He really has some social issues to deal with.

Meanwhile, Sora couldn't find his voice. He compares himself to a fish out of water, trying to find its way back into the sea or into its bowl in order to survive, because shit he can't locate his voice and it's a necessity. He really needs to find it, or else he'd never be able to let out the things he wanted to say to the blonde in front of him. Sora had found him, the perfect model for the photo book he was planning on making. He just knows that the blonde could complement many of the themes he was gonna be shooting pictures of, and all Sora needs to do is ask.

The brunette tries to find his voice. He tries and tries and desperately tries. But still, in the end, no sound comes out of his mouth. His nerves were getting to him, making him frantic, trying to shut down his mind. But he had already decided that he couldn't let himself become anxious with just asking. The attractive blonde was right there in front of him, right there! And all he needed to do was politely ask him to be his model.

Now where was his voice when he fucking needed it?

He was about to open his mouth when he was abruptly stopped by the rustling of clothes and movement. Sora stares at the blonde boy in surprise, finding him trying to sit up and languidly stretching, like a cat. The brunette's eyes widen a little more at the sliver of skin peeking timidly underneath the hem of the blonde's black shirt. It looked so smooth and so fair, crystal clear images of unblemished porcelain flesh began to bombard his mind, and he suddenly wondered what it would be like if he could sensually slip his nimble fingers inside the blonde's shirt and—

A sharp inhale finds its way in his breathing, and he mentally tries to calm himself down.

Seriously, who was this painstakingly attractive person?

Sora needed to know, and fast.

"Excuse me."

He finally finds his voice, gathering enough courage in himself to let out the needed words. Sora manages to catch the attention of the anonymous blonde as he swiftly slings his bag strap on his shoulder, placing his camera inside the bag. The nervousness he has felt before quickly melts away as he maintains eye contact with the blonde, and he has a smile lying in wait for him. Finally, he could properly talk to the boy!

Roxas stops his stretching, big doe eyes gazing up at the brunette as he was startled by the words. The blonde intently stares at the intruder, gaze narrowing as he begins scrutinizing him. The intruder was tanned, skin sun-kissed and appearing firm. He was lean and, while his gray polo was quite loose, he defiantly had a toned body beneath the guise. His brown, gravity-defying locks looked soft to touch, despite its spiky appearance. Roxas had the slightest urge to playfully run his fingers through the brown spikes, wanting to know if he could elicit some sort of reaction from the brunette. If the pads of his pale fingers softly massaged the brunette's scalp, what kind of noises would he make? Roxas shudders and pushes the images away. This was an intruder treading on restricted territory.

Although, this intruder was sort of hot.

The blonde erases the thought and blindly throws it out of his head. He didn't even know this person and he was already checking him out! Get a grip, Roxas, his mind reprimands him. He straightens a little and sits up with his legs crossed, pondering on what to do with his situation.

Should he ask the intruder to leave? That would probably be the most sensible thing to do, but he was reluctant to just let the gorgeous brunette walk out. When he became conscious of what he just thought of, Roxas' eyes widen as his golden brows knit together.

What the hell, Roxas? Gorgeous? No!, the small voice in his head shouts at him in anger.

Before he could even start waging a mental war with his conscience, a tanned hand comes to wave in front of his face. Roxas looks up again to gaze at eyes so amazingly identical to his own. He catches himself staring at the other's striking eyes, even though his were mysteriously the same shade and color. Realizing what he was doing, he turns away with a blush painting his cheeks pink. Roxas surreptitiously steals a glance at the brunette, and when he catches the intruder's eyes, the other had a small grin plastered on his lips.

"Mind if I sit with you?" the brunette asks sheepishly, hand resting on the back of his neck. Roxas blinks at him.

Sora watches the blonde boy with rapt attention, seeing him scooting a little to give him some space. His nerves start coming back as he calmly settled down beside the blonde, his legs out in front of him. He puts some distance between them, finding their situation a little awkward, but knew he could do nothing about it. At first the silence was comforting, as it let them gather their thoughts while practiced words were at the back of their minds. But once the quiet started becoming a little overbearing, the need for words became prominent. Sora decides that he needs to be the one to speak up first.

"Hey, I—"

"Um, I—"

Two pairs of deep blue eyes flicker towards each other, both in surprise and confusion. They had spoken at the exact same time, and while it was kind of creepy, it was, at the same time, funny and entertaining. The staring had gone on for a few moments or so, but then the suffocating silence came upon them again. It was awkward, and neither of them truly liked awkward. Two mouths spontaneously opened again to speak up.

"I'm sorry—"

"Sorry I—"

Their eyes widen, the both of them shocked this time at talking together for a second time. They try to stare each other down, eyes slinking as if irked by the thought that they were actually speaking together, and because no one could properly get a word in without the other talking at the same time. Though, they were also highly amused, so it wasn't all that bad. But someone had to break the loop.

"You go first." Sora offers, with a big smile on his face. Roxas lightly frowns, trying his best to cover up the threatening blush forming on his cheeks. That smile almost shined with the radiance of the sun. Almost.

"No, you." The blonde answers, his lips quirking up a little despite his reddening face.

"I insist."

"No, really! You first."

The brunette tightly furrows his brows, his eyes holding steady Roxas' gaze. Roxas slightly cowers inside at the intense look the guy was giving him, as well as become a little irritated with how they were exchanging words. Maybe he should've asked the intruder to leave when the first opportunity presented itself. It wasn't as if they were going to be conversing familiarly anyway, so why should he bother with politeness or courtesy? Roxas inwardly groans at his slow thinking and scolds himself for having been temporarily mesmerized by the stranger. He felt so much like an idiot sometimes. The blonde was about to tell the intruder to just leave when his train of thought was interrupted by the brown-haired boy.

"I seriously insist you go first. A gentleman lets others speak first, especially women." Sora randomly blurts out, mildly stumped at the other's stubbornness. The implication of his words did not dawn on him until later on. Roxas suppresses the laugh that wanted to pass through his lips, when the words the brunette said to him suddenly made sense. He stares at the other in mortification, mouth hung open, one perfectly arched brow raised. Did he just imply what Roxas thought he implied?

"Are you trying to say I'm a girl?" he asks, taken aback and horrified. Roxas seethed at him.

He was not a damn girl!

Sora stiffens and bewilderment crosses his features. What the hell, he wasn't implying that the blonde was a woman! He just said that out of courtesy! A heated glare finds its way on the blonde's face, aimed at him, and Sora felt like he was being accused for a committing a heinous crime. But then again, it was sick and disturbing to label a guy as a girl. It was kind of offensive, even. But the words slipped out of his mouth before he could even think about them, and now he had to pay for his mistake.

"I'm not saying you're a girl!"

"Then what?" Roxas says in distress.

"I said that to be polite!"

"I'm pretty sure it isn't polite to tell a guy that he's a girl!"

"…I just blurted the first thing on my mind. Sorry…" Sora crosses his arms, his eyes avoiding the blonde's terrifying glare. Roxas was unimpressed.

"But it was still rude. And see? You're not even looking at me!"

"I said I was sorry!" The brunette throws his arms up, aggravated.

They hold each other's stormy gaze, electricity crackling in the space between them. There was so much tension in the air, it was almost tangible. But after minute of slow breathing and of simply staring, Sora looks away and crosses his arms again, a pout now etched on his face. The blonde sees this and tries—really tries—to stop the small twitching of his mouth, but he only fails. That pout made him want to cuddle the brunette. He suddenly had this ridiculous desire to fluff the guy's hair and to softly pet his head and coo him. Roxas tries to hide the small smile just waiting to split his face, wanting to maintain his glare, but the twitching of his lips did not go unnoticed by Sora.

Sora was sure there was something more to the small pursing of the blonde's pink lips. And the boy's glare, oh god. It was the prettiest glare he's ever seen in all his nineteen years of existence. Did that twitching of the blonde's mouth mean that he found their situation amusing? Because if it did, then that meant he wasn't alone in this and that the other boy (whom he's subconsciously named 'attractive blond', and he'll probably call him that if ever he doesn't get to know his name) was at least a little comfortable with him. The thought relaxes him, and he feels a snicker bubbling in the back of his throat. He sees the blonde slightly puffing his cheeks and Sora couldn't stop himself anymore.

Their faces break into grins and the sweet sound of laughter erupts.

They laugh for few good moments before they resigned to catching their breaths and breathing normally again. They feel so much more comfortable than before, and they think that maybe they can finally work out this conversation. Roxas thinks it's been long enough anyways, and he extends his hand to the brunette.

"I'm Roxas. Roxas Strife." He introduces himself, eyes smiling and mirroring his lips. Sora shakes his hand excitedly.

"I'm Sora, Sora Leonha—wait what?! Did you just say Strife?" the brunette almost falls back. 'Strife' was an unusual last name, and he only knows one other person with a last name like that. He was blonde, blue-eyed and extremely good-looking. And his first name starts with a 'C'. Roxas answers him with a nod.

"Uhuh. Why?"

"Can I ask you something?"

"Mhmm. Depends." Roxas lazily shrugs, bringing his knees up to his chin.

"Are you related to Cloud Strife?" the silence after the question was deafening. Roxas looked a little torn, as Sora eyes him in worry.

"…that's none of your business." The blonde replies coldly, startling Sora at the weak but curt tone of voice. The brunette shifts his gaze and directs his stare to his lap, feeling ashamed all of a sudden. Maybe he stepped on a landmine?

"Sorry…I guess it was a sensitive question."

At hearing the quiet apology tinged with sadness, Roxas instantly felt guilty. He feels his gut wrenching and twisting in regret. He shouldn't have answered the other so harshly. Sora didn't do anything wrong and even asked him if it was okay to give him a question, and he allowed it somewhat.

The whiff of the flowers around him gets caught in his nose, as he gently fingers one of the pink carnations in the space between him and Sora. Roxas breathes out a small sigh and his blue eyes meet Sora's own. A forced smile puts itself on his lips.

"No, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that. I-I'm Cloud's younger brother." He confesses, warily fingering the carnation. Sora's eyes turn wide.

"I knew it! You remind me so much of him!"

The bright twinkle in Sora's blues and the huge grin on his face make Roxas forget the stinging pain of comparison. He always resented the comparisons between Cloud and him. But for once, at seeing how ecstatic and lively the brunette became, being compared had some unique benefits. Sora reminded the blonde of an enthusiastic kid who got the right answer to a question. Finding the image laughable, Roxas lets out a small giggle but then quickly covers his mouth to stop himself from emitting similar embarrassing sounds. But Sora heard it anyway, and he grins as he thinks that it was outrageously adorable.

"Yeah, so I'm Sora Leonhart. I'm studying Fine Arts at DTU, and your beloved older brother is my professor slash mentor." Sora winks at him in cheeky manner.

Roxas flushes red in return, and quirks a brow. "You seem enthralled to have him as your professor."

"Well yeah, he's an amazing art professor! I admire him enough for teaching me so many essential things in art."

"He's really passionate about his job." Roxas happily sighs.

"Hell yes! And Mr. Strife's so, ugh, handsome. He's so blinding sometimes." The brunette says in annoyance, blaming his teacher for being such a big distraction at times. Then Sora wants to facepalm when he sees the look of absolute shock on Roxas' face. He probably thinks I'm weird now!, Sora's inner voice says.

Roxas' cherry lips slightly open up to respond to him, but Sora's attention was drawn to the blonde's lips. His eyes bulged a little when a pink tongue lightly ran across the two red appendages, and he couldn't do anything more than audibly gulp at watching the action. Sora took in deep breaths to regulate his breathing and mentally slapped himself upside the head.

Look away, look away.

"Cloud's not available. He doesn't swing that way!" Roxas retorts, cheeks puffing out. This time, Sora's the one who blinks.

"I know. I just idolize him in secret."

The laugh accompanying the brunette's words make Roxas breathe out in relief. But the little compliment aimed at his brother made him curious about the boy sitting next to him. He thinks there's something else behind that comment.

"Are you….you know?" The blonde gestures, expectantly looking at Sora. The other scrunches his face in confusion before actually understanding.

Sora smirks at Roxas, "What if I am?" and the blonde's breath hitches.

"N-Nothing! I was just curious!"

Sora bursts into a fit of laughs and doubles over at Roxas' reaction. Seriously, the guy was freaking cute! Roxas puffs out his cheeks again and Sora's still laughing. He's never met anyone like him and the fresh new character of Roxas made him want to capture the blonde in film even more. Speaking of films and pictures…

"Uh, Roxas?" Sora starts, nervous. Roxas stops pouting and tilts his head in acknowledgment.

"Hmm?"

"I, uh, have something to ask you."

"Again? Pffft, well go ahead and shoot." Roxas jokes, smile pulling at his lips. Sora takes a deep breath.

"Okay erm, listen. Mr. Strife asked me to participate in a photography competition and said I need a model for the project. I've thought of people to model for me, but none of them fit the aura of the scenery I really want to capture...

"But then I saw you and thought, 'god, who is this absolutely attractive guy?' and believed you were perfect model material. So I…"

Sora leaves his sentence hanging, glancing at Roxas to gauge his reaction. Roxas' lips were set in a straight line, his golden brows were furrowed and baby blues appeared as if contemplating. His blue eyes abruptly dim, and as he looks away, a forlorn sigh escapes his lips. Sora's heart broke a little.

"I can't."

The answer makes him want to drown in depression, but Sora knows he can persuade the blonde. No one else could manage to exude the same aura that Roxas had, and the blonde could exploit that aura to magnetically pull people into looking at his pictures. Roxas was plenty attractive enough after all.

"Roxas." Sora calls him, tone gentle. A shudder tears in Roxas' spine at the sound and he peeks at the brunette.

"You can."

Roxas stares at him in protest, blonde head shaking quickly and bangs falling over dimmed eyes. He doesn't want to do it, he doesn't want his pictures to be taken by a guy he just met. Other people will look at his photos and ask him about it and he'll be compared even more to Cloud who's perfect and everything, and he'll be embarrassed when his friends see him and talk to him about it, maybe they'd even laugh at him and he doesn't want that ever. And he'll probably be afraid of the camera flashes because it's white and shit he's scared of being enveloped in white, he doesn't want to remember those traumatic memories of his and white will only remind him of his father and fuck his eyes are starting to burn because he's suddenly remembering and…and—

"Roxas! Snap out of it!"

Roxas feels himself being shaken violently by tanned hands, and stares up at Sora who's suddenly towering over him. He doesn't recognize the wet droplets falling from his eyes and the vicious, shaky sobs racking through his body. Even more tears spill out of his eyes at realizing that he had a memory lapse, and that he shouldn't have been haunted by those memories. A tanned hand holding him comes up to gently place itself on his cheek, thumb brushing away fallen tears.

Sora looks down at him, worried eyes meeting Roxas'. "You okay?"

Roxas doesn't answer, instead bringing Sora closer and wrapping his trembling arms around his waist, even though his body was screaming for him not to. He buries his face into Sora's warm chest, wanting sudden comfort from the brown-haired boy. A broken sob escapes him, as Sora curls an arm around his shaking shoulders, the other hand resting on his head and lightly petting his golden locks in an act of comfort.

Roxas doesn't understand why he could allow himself to freely break down in front of the brunette. It felt unusual to give in, but it was Sora who was holding him, and even though he doesn't understand, he feels that it's okay. The brunette had this calming presence around him, and Roxas knows it's comfort enough. His heavy breathing slows down, his sobs gradually quieting until they were reduced to small sniffs.

"I-I'm okay n-now." Roxas meekly whispers, arms disentangling themselves from Sora's waist. He immediately wipes away the offending tears from his eyes.

"That's good." Sora says with a pleased grin, unfamiliar with the disappointment he felt when Roxas let go of him. He ignores it anyway. The ruffling that he was doing on Roxas' hair made the blonde smile. Roxas was about to open his mouth to form words of gratification, for the comfort, when they both hear the gates of the inner garden opening.

Someone was coming in.

Sora and Roxas quickly back away from each other, putting a good two feet between them. They both stare at the person who entered the garden, intent on explaining themselves if it was Aerith, but it wasn't her. Sora looks at the other intruder in confusion, taking in his appearance. He's seen enough blondes with blue eyes for one day, and this one didn't even look as attractive as the ones he's seen before him.

Huh.

Roxas pales at seeing the intruder and had the color draining from his face as he recognized him.

No! Why was he here?! He shouldn't be here! Radiant Garden was a few hundred miles away from his hometown, and if this man was here, then he must have been sent by Roxas'—

Oh no.

No, no, no…no!

Roxas staggers back, eyes wide with fear. He clumsily stumbles, landing on his butt, but his eyes were glaring daggers at the man who entered Aerith's sanctuary. The man only grins, his smile malicious, horrifying, close to evil. The other blonde was the right-hand man of Roxas' very own living nightmare. He had a purpose, and that was to take Roxas back. Roxas growls at him. But the guy only continues grinning.

"I've found you, little Roxas."

And Roxas pales even more.


A/N. Mohehehe, hello cliffie! XD I don't know when I'll be posting again, but please be patient~ OH DOES ANYONE WANT TO GUESS WHO THE EVIL GUY IS because I'm willing to give that person a cyber chocolate chip cookie. Just PM me. OHOHOHOHO. *evil laugh*

Read and review, SoRoku pervs! (oh shit that applies to me too!) XD