"Angel of Twilight: Grief’s Adept": Grief's Adept ( Chapter 1 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
`Thinking to one's self.'
Major P.O.V./Scene Change: * * * *
A/N: My notes/comments/ramblings
Chapter Start/End: ------
|Special Note|: August 21, 2007. Sorry this took so long to post up. 1st I was w/o internet, then `Persona 3' was eating my brain . . . actually, it still is. . . And the persona games always alter my outlook on life, like `Neon Genesis' kind of reevaluation of life. . . . yep, it's decided, there's going to be `Persona' stuff in the 4th story!
A/N: As I was working on chapter 5 of `AoT;CwBd', I was assaulted by ideas on how Demyx would have reacted to Axel flat out leveling with him about his part in Zexion's `death'. Granted, Nobodies don't have emotions. So, a decent amount of suspension of disbelief is needed to fully enjoy this . . . unless you agree with the majority of the fandom. I'll try to give my reasoning in brief.
Rating: Decidedly NC-17
|Spoilers|: Lots of spoilers for CoM as this is set literally within 12 hours of it ending--Riku's story--as Axel stuck around long enough to wish NaminÃ© well before letting her go off with DiZ (Go look up Organization XIII on Wikipedia. Apparently in the FM+ of 2, Riku tells Axel to take care of NaminÃ©). You will more or less hear about most--if not everything--Axel did through CoM, with alterations according to my AU where appropriate in regards to Riku.
|Description|: Demyx doesn't handle Axel's news of what happened at `Castle O' well, and he certainly doesn't like how the redhead was involved with things. An explanation lemon for `Clockwork Breakdown' of my `Angel of Twilight' AU. CoM spoilers.
|Warning|: There is a fine line between rape, and masochism. Wish me luck in walking it. Also, prepare to be brain-fucked by my philosophies . . . maybe. . . . Also, rampant OOC-ness on the part of Demyx, but this thing also explains why Demyx acts the way he does in 2. Less than rampant OOC-ness for everyone else. Also, minor crack, because that's just how Demyx is. And language, can't forget the roughness and language . . . and Male/Male sexorz . . . tiny bit of blood?
Beated by: `DragonLady'
Criticism: Constructive comments lead to better writing. De-constructive comments lead to better writing, and amending broken parts of fic. Flames and attacks on my character lead to Axel laughing his ass off at people failing miserably to grasp the concept behind the `remove this review' button we authors get for our stories. . . . Or being used to warm up his cocoa, and hot water bottle.
Special thanks: `Love-child of Marluxia' [of MM.Org], because I don't smell or taste in my daydreams, which means I don't smell or taste any of my/the characters.
It was the stereotypical `dark and stormy night' when Axel slogged into the Castle That Never Was from off the deluged streets of the Dark City. Being the fire type that he was, the redhead despised water in large amounts as it had a tendency to functionally shut off his `art'--or as Xemnas called it, elemental power. Thinking of his Superior, he wasn't going to be in for a pleasant night, and that only made him stomp harder as he trudged in the general direction of the man's room.
In short, he was apprehensive about the report on Castle Oblivion he was soon to deliver. The experiment had not ended favorably for the Organization--though they had managed to break even in the grand scheme of things . . .
No, couldn't think about that right now, not while he had to go talk to Mansex. He needed to be as emotionless and cold as possible, make the guy think he was being sincere--as asinine as the idea of a sincere Nobody was. He would talk to Demyx in private later, even if `Mr. Nobody' himself didn't like the idea.
He owed the dirty-blond that much.
Sighing and shaking his head, Axel considered changing out of his sopping wet clothing. It wouldn't hurt to make himself at least a little presentable, right? But did he really want to catch any grief from the man about being prompt with his reports?
“Hey, firefly! What the hell are you doing here?”
Blinking, the chakram thrower turned his eyes to the left. And up.
“Yo Xiggy-pop! I'm doing my impression of a drowned rat. Wha'da ya think?”
Xigbar scanned him with his one golden egale-eye, walking diagonally across the ceiling to the nearest wall as he did so. “I think you need a few more minutes under the faucet to make it believable. Why didn't you just teleport inside?”
`Because I felt dirty.' He brushed the thought aside and shrugged, continuing to watch the other march down to him. “Out of juice pops.”
“Hey,” the gray-striped brunet bopped his younger companion on the forehead. “Vexen's the `moldy-oldie' around here, I'm still in my prime!” And he gave a relaxed bark of laughter, grinning to show his pearly whites. But at the sigh from the fire starter, along with the look in those green eyes, he quickly sobered. He dropped from the wall to land in the standard vertical alignment perpendicular to the floor. “What happened?”
“I gotta see the boss about a `failed experiment'.” Was the only thing Axel said.
Eye wide, Xigbar again question his fellow Nobody. “Castle Oblivion . . . ?”
He shook his head. “It's done pops, as good as ash. I barely made it out with my skin.”
The `Freeshooter' sighed. “I'll look for the Superior's dog, he can scent out his master no matter where he is. You get changed before you get sick--”
“Can we get sick?” The pyro asked sarcastically.
“Do you want to be the one to answer that?” A pause. “Then go get showered and changed. If everything's hit rock-bottom, then it's stable, and can't get worse for the passing of time.”
“Fine, fine.” He waved the elder off beginning to walk in the general direction of his room again. “Just get word out to people that I'm back--not why. Tell everyone but Xem I'm here to deliver a progress report.”
Summoning up a dark portal, Xigbar made the parting comment, “I can't wait to hear what the other returnees have to say about this.” And then he was gone.
Axel didn't have the heart to correct his delusion.
* * * * * *
`Note to self, being chewed out is not fun. Getting that bastard's eye to twitch is.' And he said he didn't feel emotions . . .
Plunking himself down in the kitchen--screw the fancy names for everywhere, there was a stove in here damnit!--the fire starter deeply inhaled the fumes from his piping hot chocolate. Mmmmm, warm beverage of soothing goodness. And sugar, one must never forget the sugar. Or the cream, milk when they didn't have that. Marshmallows were optional.
With the first sip he truly started to feel the bleakness of the evening leave him. Marly was gone, idiot that he was. Larx had preceded him, much to Axel's amusement. He'd had to nip Vex himself, and watched as Lex was . . . that was just wrong. 
And then there was Number VI himself, the `Cloaked Schemer', Zexion.
Demyx was probably going to kill him once he told him the truth. That meant he'd have to finish his last cocoa first, as he'd never see another sunrise. Or hang out with the last tolerable blond left in the Organization. `Wonder if Roxy'll miss me . . .' He shook his head free of false memories, the hollow echo of emotions that had no right to lodge in his empty breast.
This was the sad truth of Nobodies, they had no hearts, thus they felt no emotions. At best, they had the strong memories of emotions, memories from their pre-incarnations, their lives as Somebodies. With these echoes they could sound out how they were supposed to feel in a given situation during their current non-lives. At worse . . . they ended up like Xemnas, completely devoid of even the capability to pretend. And when you couldn't even escape to fantasy, that's when the numbing crush of unfeeling wore you a little too thin, rode you a little too hard, and you found your sanity slipping, if not breaking down.
Needless to say, there was no sanity left among the `elders', even before `Castle O'. Now the newbie-bunnies Roxas and NaminÃ© were something different; they hadn't been in nonexistence long enough to lose any noticeable amount of humanity. Add in that their Somebodies were pubescent, hormonal teens, rife with emotions, and it was easy to confuse them with normal humans.
Which just made them so much fun to be around. Well . . . he preferred Roxas' company just the slightest bit more. He couldn't say if the same held true for anyone else besides Xemnas or the late Marluxia as the former simply didn't care about anything and thus held them in even measure, and the latter . . .
Axel frowned before taking another swig of cocoa. He thought he could almost taste his phantom revulsion about the way pinky had acted around the girl, and it was precisely why he was not going to lose any sleep over his departure from the realm of twilight. Freaky flower fucker. Ooo if Nobodies could have `next lives' after this, he'd have to make a point in finding Marly's reincarnation and curb-stomping all over his frilly pansy-ass for the shit he put Nami through.
Though if he found out Riku, DiZ, or The King--not too likely from any of them--did or allowed anything like that to happen to her, he'd have to personally hunt them down for the same treatment . . . Maybe with back up for the darkling. Silver got pretty scary near the end, even when Ansem was fucking over his possibility of getting support from the mouse. Hell, the shadow barrier was a given, even Axel would have put up a fire wall to keep the guy physically out. But laying in wait inside an anti-magic field? And the kid didn't pick up on the fact that the Heartless Lord was using items to recover himself, or that his `signature card' was not actually magic based.
Poor kid, if Ansem was anything like Xemnas--which, hello they were the two cursed halves of a fractured whole--he was not in for a happy life with the man. Personally, if Axel had to be possessed by a nut-job like him, he'd settle his affairs, leave his chakrams to Roxas, and ask Demyx to have his water clones help drown him so as to make it as difficult as possible for Ansem to save himself. (One on five with the clones and he was good. One on thirty was a slightly different ball game.)
Wow he'd gotten off track. Curse his tendency towards digression when thinking! This was why he avoided it as much as he could during battle. Or maybe he battled so much because it forced his mind to focus? Six of one, a donut or so of the other. . . Hmm . . . suuuuuuuuuuuggaaaaaaaaar . . . Alright then, time to forage! Or experiment with the stove.
Several minutes of raiding the fridge had him silently damning himself for aiding in the death of the Organization's best cook.
It also brought an aquatic-eyed blond to him, on the heels of a Dusk.
“Hey Ax. You wanted to talk?” Demyx titled his head to the side as he spoke, in an almost bored fashion.
Pulling the glazed donut that he'd retrieved from the bread-box out of his mouth, Number VIII nodded. “Yeah, but not here. Oh,” he turned to the lesser Nobody--more like larval Nobody, in much the same way Shadows were larval Heartless. “You found him?” The Dusk squealed an affirmative. “Good. Let the others know they can stop looking.” Another squeal answered him, before the critter was weaving and warping its way out of the area.
“So we going to your room or mine?” The musician was utterly calm, almost deadpan.
Zexion would have been proud.
Axel violently shoved that thought away with the realization that his friend must have been napping when the Dusk found him. And Demyx was not one to be taken lightly when roused from sleep against his will. He was actually the worst member--Roxas and he made for close seconds--to fight when he was half-asleep . Even the Superior found it simpler to just wait for the young man to awaken naturally then to meddle with him anymore. And the sitarist wasn't a slouch when he was awake either, given the level of control he had over his clones.
“Wherever you'd be more comfortable Dem. Just, make sure we can sit down.” He offered a warm smile, but knew it only made his once friend all the more suspicious of what had happened.
“. . . I don't really want to know, do I?” Demyx took a seat at the table Axel's cocoa still rested on.
“No. But who would? Nevermind. You'll find out soon enough. I just wanna finish getting the chill out`a me.” That, and mull over the phrasing of things. Yeah, he'd have to use tact.
“I'm surprised you're still hungry. You have Zexy's cooking to look forward to each night!” And the blond giggled at what was probably the thought of `his' metallic-blue haired illusionist.
“Nope.” The flame-thrower stalled. “Zex only cooked for the under floors, though that was all my associates' fault. Damn Marly. Couldn't have made fun of them when they weren't around, nooo~ooo. Ugh, I've had to spend the last few weeks living on fast-food from wherever `petal power' ordered from.  I'm sick of cow and chicken.” The lanky Nobody shuddered.
The water artist made a confused face. “But . . . you're eating a donut . . . with cocoa . . .”
“Sugar is an entirely different food group from lard, grease, or fat.” He lightly defended, deciding that he'd get nothing better to eat at this rate. Walking over to his previous seat, he lowered himself into the empty chair.
Now it was Demyx's turn to frown. “Sometimes I think our personalities changed more than we think they did. Ya know, from before, back at our real home and . . . <i>lives</i>.” He patted his slightly taller companion's hair. “Wha'da ya think?”
With a rueful smile, he answered. “Maybe. But don't let Mansex's rhetoric get into your head. The guy is just sad that when he `gets his rocks off' he still doesn't feel jack-shit.” Which when you were desperate to feel something could be problematic. Truth be told, outside of the newbies, the human-type Nobodies all slept around. It was simple logic, sex meant heightened emotions with relatively little danger to one's self, for Somebodies. For Nobodies, any situation like that was worth exploring--and repeating--as it was only during these kinds of stimuli intense moments that they could shake off the ache of incompletion.
“Amen bro.” His hand was up for a high-five, which was answered by the redhead. “Hey, speaking of home, you think Solaris  has popped back into existence?” There was a slight upward tug on either corner of his mouth.
“Nah man. Why do ya ask?” Another sip of cocoa disappeared down his gullet.
“Because,” Demyx bridged his fingers together and rested his chin on them. “Some of the `Devoured' worlds have come back. You know that one world with the weird magic, the Land of Dragons? And then there's that animal place, the Pride Lands. There's even this one other castle said to be lorded over by a real beast-man--and I'm not talking about SaÃ¯x!” The oceanic eyed youth giggle at his own private joke while the redhead just softly chuckled.
“Yeah. Sora . . . Sora's done a lot of good for us . . . shadow side too.” He couldn't quite turn off the sad act, it was too natural. “He weakened Xem's better half, and made him spit out the more recent worlds he chowed down on. But Solaris . . . I think Solaris was eaten too long ago Dem. I don't think we get to go home.” He ended in a sigh.
“Oh.” The Nocturne pouted. “I was hoping I could show Zexy where we grew up, the first time around anyways.” Then he smiled. “Guess we'll just have to wait a little longer for that. Who knows, maybe he'll finally breakdown and show me his old haunts! Right Ax?”
Those damnedable not-blue, not-green eyes were looking at him. And he just wanted to lay it all out here . . . but it wouldn't be fair to either of them. Dem would just run and go cry in his room, and not say anything to anyone, and take it all out on whatever hapless mortals he ran across during his missions.
Demyx's music could soothe any savage beast. And when it was asleep, he used his metal sitar strings like garrote wire.
`Note to self: Do not fall asleep tonight.' Axel shook his head. “I . . . you don't wanna know what I think Dem. Really, ya don't.” Another sigh was answered by a worried look, but before the blond could voice his concerns or questions Axel cut him off. “Look Dem, things didn't go well at `Castle O' tonight. I really need to finish this snack, because it may very well be my last meal. Xemnas almost showed emotion, he actually sort of looked like he kind of maybe remembered what it possibly felt like to be pissed. And trust me when I say, time's going to do jack-shit for anyone. It's as bad as it gets, and only my death can make things worse.” Not that he was going to tell Demyx that he was not intoning his personal opinion, but actually sighting truth. If he died, there would be no survivors to ask questions of later.
Although, he reasoned as he munched quietly on his sugar-dough, that might not extend his life much past this night. The orange-eyed man would probably drum up several `I-can't belive-these-aren't-death-missions' for him to complete by his lonesome.
It was a dreary quarter hour later that Axel was satiated. With a last swig of his liquid treat, the pyro tossed his mug into the sink to be hand washed by one of the lesser Nobodies.
“So, where to?” Glancing down at the slightly shorter blond, the dancing flame leaned against the nearby fridge.
Demyx had not liked one thing about the way his once best-friend was acting all night. And there was the false echo of sinking inside his gut. So after swallowing down the non-lump in his throat, the musician answered, “Mine. Bedroom, not--nevermind. My bedroom.” He added quickly.
A nod from jungle eyes. “Right. Think you can `port us?”
“Sure.” He was already standing up and waving a hand to call up the darkness. “After you.”
With one last resigned sigh, the redhead made peace with the worlds and stepped past his future murderer.
* * * * * *
“So,” they were both on the plain gray bed. “Where do you want me to begin?”
Number IX was flat on his back looking up at the ceiling, as Axel had yet to start talking, like he was trying to find his tongue. “I don't know. Don't stories usually start at the beginning?”
“Yeah, unless the writer's fucking with you. Then it can start anywhere, even the end.” He remembered that much from school.
“Okay then, `mister writer', start at the end if the beginning is giving you so much grief.” And he rolled up onto his knees with a one-hundred watt grin.
`Oh Dem . . .' He shook his head clear of echoes. “O.k. Well, the end's pretty lame--Mansex doesn't want me to tell anyone what really went down at `Castle O'. He might tell Xig, `n' Xall--and we all know seven's gonna suck it out of him. If he doesn't say anything to them, then they'll have to wait with the rest of you to get a censored upshot.”
“You're right, that ending is pretty lame.” And the aquamancer gave his shoulder a shove. “Okay, forget what I said. Either start at the start, or start with the shit the Superior jerk doesn't want us to know.”
“Damn it Demy!” He scrubbed at his hair. “Don't you have any idea . . .” Oh right, he didn't. “O.k., let's start with how everything went wrong.” He motioned for his friend to get comfy and took the deepest breath he could.
“Marly went traitor, Larx with him, just like Sex said and Zexy thought they would. The experiment would have worked--was working--but about half-a-dozen different things screwed us all royally. One, Marluxia was a fucking moron and pissed Zexy, Lexy and Vexie off, so our two teams stopped playing nice with each other when we got into crunch time. Two, I was ordered by Sex to off pinky and `the bane' if they got stupid--which I almost did in Mar's case. But remember what I said about the experiment working? You need a subject to make it work, and you remember who the subjects were supposed to be, right?”
Demyx blinked. “Anyone stupid enough to wander in? And anyone with a Keyblade, like Sora, right?”
“Yeah,” the redhead nodded, “Roxas' heart. Sora showed up way earlier today, he had Mickey's two best `people' with him. But that wasn't the crazy part, a darkling showed up in his wake. And not just any darkling, it was Riku--”
“AWH! That's the kid who was carrying Xemnas' other half--his Heartless, Ansem! Holy-shit, you guys were dealing with all of them? At the same time?!” How did they make it out alive?
“Oh, it gets better, The King was with the silver kid. So while Sora's crew was annoying the crap out of us, Zexy and co had to deal with the freakishly powerful duo. Don't know why, but Riku just sort of `Appeared' in the basement. Zexion thought it had something to do with Sora's and his fate being all scrambled together.” Okay, easing into the truth and other details. Didn't need to tell him right now that he found out from the Riku Replica that Vexen had said as much to Zexion--being that the Replica took the memories to go with the dark power.
“Oh my god,” the sitarist buried his head in his hands with a chuckle. “That sounds like one of my worse nightmares on crack! And not the really good crack that keeps you from dreaming, I mean the shit that makes everything even worse!”  Shivering he asked the one question that Axel had been dreading for the entire night.
“How did you all make it out alive?!”
Axel's smile became pained, even rueful. “We didn't.”
Demyx stopped, obviously floored. “Wha . . . What?” His oceanic eyes were shining with fear.
“We didn't all make it out alive.” And he sighed. “Everyone was going insane by the end of it--like `we all had our hearts' crazy. I guess Sora and Riku's hearts are just that . . . influential.” He paused so the tidbit could sink in, to give Dem a chance to ask questions. But when the shorter Nobody remained quiet, Axel had no choice but to continue.
“NaminÃ©--under orders of Marly--was screwing Sora's memories over and superimposed herself over Kairi. She didn't touch Riku's mind, but then he was busy dealing with a rezed Ansem shadow attempting to grab control of him again. She's fine. Sora played hero and saved her, but now he's in deep sleep in one of the `rosebuds' so Nami can fix what she did. I don't know where she is now, just that she's in the care of Riku, Mickey and an Unknown by the name of DiZ. The kid and King I know can be trusted, and if DiZ is stupid enough to try anything, they'll make him regret it.” He swiped a gloved hand over his forehead again, giving him time to catch his breath.
Demyx was hanging on his every word.
Thank the gods Zex died last.
“That's about the only good thing that came out of this night--day, what-the-fuck-ever it was. Well, technically Mansex made out like a bandit too. He gets info on the experiment and on his Heartless. What's more, Ansem lived this time `round and has made himself comfortable inside the darkling's heart. Can't take control of him, but at least Sex has a little time to go find him. But yeah, from the top, it went down something like this . . .”
The redhead stood to pace, retracing the footfalls of his memories. “Sora showed up, and Riku came in a few floors later. At first we had both of them just fucking around with figments, but Marluxia was a traitor from the get-go and never planned on handing brownie over to Xemnas. My understanding is that Zexy knew what he was planing before we even set anything in motion, so when he realized that it was Riku thumping around the castle, him Lexy and Vexie decided to catch little boy silver to protect against us overthrowing the Organization. And when I say us, I was under orders from Mansex to keep an eye on Marly and Larly so I had to convince them that I had gone traitor too.” Here he stopped in his rushed talking to look Demyx in the eyes.
“I killed Vexen to that end. Through and through with my chakram, right in front of Sora's eyes.” Without missing a beat he was pacing again. Neither of the young Nobodies thought they felt loss over the `Chilly Academic'.
“From there, things got stupider, and Lexaeus went after the darkling about the same time Larxene decided to bitch-slap Sora. They wanted Riku something bad because it looked like we were winning. What ended up happening was L and L getting off-ed within minutes of each other. Larly got cocky-stupid and Lex . . .” The pyro shook his head. “That's a nightmare for another day, it was like . . . completely fucked up, just . . . it was almost as bad as what happened to the Riku Replica Vexie made--”
“Axel?” At last the sitarist was speaking again. “You lost me. When did this Replica thing come into play?”
He'd stopped moving at the sound of the other's voice. Thinking back on things, the best answer he could give was, “Not too long after sweet silver--Riku--himself stepped into `Castle O'. Vexie waited a floor or three and then fought with him to grab his data, and then a little while later he had a ready made Riku clone. The thing didn't even have memories, it was like,” he shuddered, “an artificial Nobody. But it sort of . . . wasn't. And it was nuts what they did to him--it. Marly, Larly and Vexie agreed that Nami should wipe his mind and then replace his memories to make him think he was the real Riku. Biggest mistake they could have made in my opinion, the replica handled his darkness differently than the kid. Riku was piss scared that Ansem was going to eat his brains, or something, so he was constantly reigning in his darkness. The replica was throwing shadows around like they were candy, and if he'd--clone--just gotten to him--Riku--one more time before the kid--Riku again--finally came to terms with both light and dark but after he--copy cat `he'--was strong enough to fight, he--replica--might have won.”
He was shaking from the energy it took to keep from digressing further and further away from the point. But even pacing he was having trouble focusing, because focusing meant a short story, which meant they got to Zexy's fate sooner, and he really, really didn't want it to get to that part just yet. Once he was sure Demyx completely understood what the situation had been, fine, but not before.
Speaking of the water boy, he was curled into a ball on his bed, back against the headboard. “So . . . Vexen made a replica, and they fucked with it's mind? Why didn't they just make a bunch of them and have them all dogpile on the kids? Even if they were weaker, they would have had numbers--like with my water clones. Hell, they could have at least sent a Riku Replica here to bring back reinforcements so that we could all help drag Sora and company down.”
Emerald eyes cast downward, he offered the only answer to the dirty blond he could. “From the outside looking in, you can see everything, including the answers. But when you're in the belly of the beast, when you're trapped in the moment, you go with your gut. And if your gut's wrong,” he trailed off, unable to continue defending himself. “We got stupid. Some of us got arrogant, or pride-full,” his mind flashed on the reported last words of Zexion, “or scared. I . . . I almost killed Marluxia, but he used NaminÃ© as a shield, made me hesitate just long enough for Sora to show up. We fought, I threw the fight because I'm not a traitor and I didn't feel like being turned into a Dusk for my troubles. Marluxia wasn't so lucky. He bought it at Sora's hands.”
Expelling his excess breath he took up his seat on the bed again. “From there, Nami got him to go to sleep, put his memories right and all that. Xemy may have wanted him at his beck and call, but he can work with him as a freelancer, taking out Heartless on his own time. Same with Riku, good if we could get him, no skin off our nose if we couldn't.”
The fire starter steeled himself for what he'd have to say next, only Zexy's fate was left. With a last deep breath he opened his mouth.
“I don't get it, you said Zexy and his two were fighting with you and your two.” Those blue-aqua eyes were on him again. “How do you know what was happening all over the castle?”
Axel's jaw hung wide as he had been on the verge of answering that very question. Looking over his buddy, he could tell the other suspected the worst, but was in denial. He could see the ghost of apprehension on his face and the fake glimmer of tears gathering at the edges of his eyes.
With a final prayer he closed his eyes, and accepted what the fates had in store for him.
“The replica told me,” he began slowly. “It told me after I lead it to Zexion . . . after I overheard Zexion say that both Sora and Riku needed to be destroyed.”
Axel opened his eyes again, but kept them trained on the bed sheets below him. “He had gotten scared, had forgotten what Xemnas wanted. Zex was convinced that one or the other of them could destroy the entire Organization, that they couldn't even be brought under our heel, so they both had to go. Even . . . even if I tried talking sense into him, it was too late, Xem would have turned us both into Dusks or worse--Zex for thinking it, and me for trying to hide what he wanted. There was . . . there was no other way out so I had to . . . I had to . . .”
He bowed his head. In a soft voice he sentenced himself with the following, “I led the Replica to him, after Nami had broke his `heart', shattered all his false memories so that he knew he was a fake again. I was telling him how he could be his own person--there was no way in hell he'd work with the Organization, so I had to do something with him. I led him to Zexy and said maybe if he took power from someone other than Riku he could become whole. It was a gamble, but it was one last experiment, to see if crushing two Nobodies  together could make a whole person.”
“No,” Demyx was shaking his head, “No. No, Zexion's a strong fighter. He may not be good with physical stuff, but if he caught him in an illusion--”
“He'd just tried and failed at doing that with the real Riku. He was tired, and jumped about five feet in the air when I came waltzing in with the clone.” He shook his head again. “Testament to how strong their hearts are; the clone shouldn't have been able to recover, but he did, and helped out Sora with Marly a little. And Sora . . . if Marly had gotten him the Organization would have been in shambles, and a lot more of us would have died tonight.” A deep sigh. “Even on his A-game, I don't think Zexion could have taken any of them--real things or replica.”
A whimper sounded from across the bed. “But, his book! Zexy . . . Zexy--”
“He didn't have his book on him.” Why . . . why did he have to think he felt emotions now?
“Zexion Always Has A Book On Him!” The dirty blond was up and glaring now. “Always! He knows better then to go around unarmed!”
“He didn't Dem. He was a sitting duck. The replica absorbed him, darkness and all. He was nice enough to let me ask questions later because I never voiced consent to mind hacking him, and I came and got him after Marluxia attacked him and NaminÃ©. So I got all the missing info for Xemnas. The castle is locked up tight waiting for him to go look over the data that's left.”
“You son of a bitch!” Gloved fists clenched at his sides. “Why did you do that?!”
“Because,” Axel shot up, drawing to his full height. “If I didn't, six would have killed Sora in his sleep. And you know what would have happened then? Dusked. He'd have been killed or Dusked. Would you have wanted that Dem? To have him made into a nearly mindless shell of himself? Prancing around here as a personal slave to Mansex for screwing us all over so royally?!” He scrubbed at his face. “Damnit! You think I wanted it to go down like that?! I had to do that to kill off two loose cannons! If the replica could get around he'd be on his way here to fuck all of us for just associating with Vex, Mar and Lar. And if I had left the other end loose, then Xemy's plan would have been out the fucking door and we'd have all been screwed! No Key-wielders means no Heartless bashing, means no purified Hearts, because there's only so much we can all do on our missions!”
“Would that have been so bad?! Would That Have Been So Fucking Bad?!” The sharp retort came without hesitation from the red-faced youth. “We've been saying Xemnas was full of himself and shit for longer than I can remember! We're proof, damn it all, me and Zex were fucking proof that we didn't need his plan!” He was just barely holding back the water works aching to spring from his hands and body.
Axel jabbed a finger into the shorter one's ribs. “Get your head clear Dem, think it through! Once he decided to go against the big-dogs he was done. If he'd tried to come home Zexi--”
The sucker punch stopped him. Blinking back his shock, the redhead touched his fingers to his jaw.
“You don't have the right to say his name.” The words were cold, almost unfeeling. “He was my heart, you asshole, he was My Heart!”
The music-man lunged, his knee catching the other in his stomach. Thus winded he began to pound on the pyro with a furious barrage of fist blows. He was screaming wordlessly as he sobbed out his resentment and hurt. But he didn't know what it was that hurt, just what he knew from before would hurt, and should hurt. And that made him think he should be angrier, so he punched harder.
Axel let him beat on him for a little bit thinking that Demyx had decided to just use him as a punching bag rather than really wanting to kill him. He figured he'd wait as long as he could stand it, then try to calm the aquamancer down. After however long it was, he began to defend himself, even catching one of the Nocturne's hands in his own.
“Dem, Dem? Dem, calm down.” He caught the other hand. “Think, the Superior wouldn't like it if--”
Number IX head-butted him.
`Ok. All bets are off.' With narrowed eyes he let his art flare from his hands and body. But being that he'd suffered through the rain earlier, and that Demyx knew his tactics by `heart', the water user just let his power flow freely. All Axel was able to accomplish was singeing the other before throwing him across his room. His smallish room he thankfully noted, which would prevent him from summoning too many water clones. True that prevented him from using his weapons, but you couldn't have it both ways in life.
“Dem, I am not looking for this fight. And if you kill me, Xemnas is probably gonna want you dead.” He brought his hands up defensively as he spoke. `Porting out of here would be useless, Demyx could just grab him before he made it through, and if he didn't this tension between them wasn't just going to fade out. So the matter needed to be settled one way or another, here and now.
“You should have thought of that first!” With wild eyes the normally cool headed Nobody lashed out with his water power in a way Axel had never seen him do before--as a tentacle. He jumped backwards, missing the brunt of it. His robe wasn't as lucky, and he felt a draft from the spot. A bladed tentacle?! He summoned out his chakrams just in time to catch the sitar aimed at his head and gut--the body at the former, and a cruel side-spike to the latter.
Number VIII forced the smaller one back across the room with a shove. With a quick pluck of his instrument Demyx had brought up a small handful of clones to distract the firebug. Said firebug made short work of them with a few well placed flame jets before he took aim at the ringleader--just enough to slow down, force him to give up. The blond sent a stream of water at him, and he found his flame guttering. He was slammed back first against the door, the wind almost knocked out of him again. Being the temperamental man that he was, Axel called on all of the firepower he had at his disposal and let it flare forward. The spout of water soon became a spout of steam and the redhead was able to throw himself to the side.
Before the sitar wielder could re-aim the other had thrown a hefty sized fireball at him. Water extinguished it before it even touched him, but that left him open to an elbow in the gut and having his own weapon slammed into his chin. Before he could recover there was the sound of ripping cloth and a burning sensation to his side as a chakram bit into him. Demyx screamed, clones rippling out from the multiple puddles of water dotting his floor to attack the other.
Now it was his turn to yell. Did he mention how much he hated water's ability to shut off his art? Things were really not going his way and Axel doubted how much more he could take. If this had been any other night and he had more in his system other than sugar and more sugar he would have had this over with already. But he'd spent too much energy at Oblivion and even more in walking back through the rain, and eating so little wasn't the best way he could have prepared for this. The clones weren't doing too much more than making a mess of what he was wearing, thankfully, so he still had a shot of pulling through this.
Saving his flames for Demyx, the redhead popped the bubbly clones with his chakrams. Once free of them he had to dodge another sitar to the face. He heard the other growl out a swear, and on turning saw that the spike near the top had been firmly implanted into the wooden door. Smirking he realized the other was at a disadvantage, there was no fast way of getting the instrument unstuck. Before he could be ganged up on again, Axel made to strike at the blond. He brought down his arms in a bear-hug around Demyx and pinned the musician's limbs to his sides, yanking him away from where he stood. He let his fire flare again, not too hot, but now he'd scorched Demy's robe something fierce.
Panting, and with his chakrams poking his once best friend in the neck Axel decided it was high time to attempt talking again. “You . . . gonna . . . calm down?”
“Nuh.” Demyx found out that nodding wasn't the best idea in the world. “Yeah . . .”
“No more . . . no more water? . . . No more clones?”
He hoped he could believe the blond, because if he was wrong, he probably wasn't going to live to tomorrow. Still, Axel let go of the teen, and flopped tiredly onto the bed, tattered robe pooling around him. His legs didn't quite make it onto the furniture, but the hell if he cared right then. Demyx didn't look much better.
Wait, Dem was standing over him . . .
Before he could even sit up he found his wrists grabbed by water-hands and his weapons forced out of them. Demyx himself was choking him with water coated hands, probably incase Axel tried anything with his fire, which he was using more on the clones so he could get free.
“He made me feel. He made me feel and you helped to take him away.” Again, deadpan. But his eyes, gods his eyes . . . his eyes were as watery as his hands. Then something odd happened, Demyx smirked, but it was cold, cruel. It was like Xemnas when he thought up a new experiment. “I've felt alot tonight because of you,” he pressed down with his hands. “Make me feel. Make me feel like he made me feel.”
The fire starter couldn't quite comprehend the words, but the actions that followed were pretty clear. The clones ripped away every scrap of clothing he had left on him, leaving him exposed to the night air, and the chill from all the moisture gathering on his skin. His own internal fires picked up, and he found that heat was radiating off him in waves. Suddenly Demyx's hands were off his throat and he could breath again, but the clones still held on to him. Not a big deal, he just needed to burn them off, and soon there was another cloud of steam around him. Thing was, even as he burned them off, Dem had more waiting to take hold of him.
Like he said before, him on five was one thing; him on thirty was another.
It didn't take too much longer for Axel to run out of juice, and when he did he found Demyx looming over him again. A naked Demyx . . . there was something wrong with this scenario.
“Make me feel,” he suspected number IX had finally gone off the deep end. However Axel wasn't able to muse long on that as his thighs were grabbed and suddenly pulled upwards.
“Nuah! Dem, what the hell--”
The redhead screamed, long and loud as something hard and wet was shoved inside him. It stung and half burned as it entered him--gods help him, as Dem entered him--and it wasn't any less painful when he pulled out of him. He continued to scream as Demyx fucked him into his mattress, body thrumming with energy as he was relentlessly abused. The strokes were hard and fast, no quarter was given or taken, the steady repetitive pace lanced through his body again and again.
Dear gods but this was turning him on faster than a wildfire burned through a wheat farm! If he was bleeding--about as likely as not--Axel wasn't close enough in his right mind to care. He arched, wanting to get the clones off him so he could reach up and pull the blond closer to him. He didn't have to--thankfully--as Demyx soon called off his copies to help him get the taller one's legs over his slender shoulders.
The mohawked/mulleted Nobody momentarily sagged under the added weight--as said before he didn't have much physical prowess. Once he regained his balance he found burning hot hands threading through his hair. Grunting, and exerting no small amount of effort even with his liquid help, Demyx was able to get more of the other onto his bed, even to the point where he could kneel and get his bent legs under his once friend, sliding the fire-wielder in closer to his body, aiding him in penetrating further the one below him.
Axel clenched tight around the other as a large bundle of nerves was slammed against inside him. With a double scream he found his hands ripped out of blond locks. Smoldering blond locks. Hey, he couldn't help it that his fire came from false passion, tied to dead echoes that had once been real. He found his offending appendages wrapped in water that wasn't lasting long enough to do anything, and the fact made him laugh. With a swear from above his head and something along the lines of `stupid jerk' being shouted at him, number VIII found his fingers laced with the other's as more water poured out around his trapped digits.
But as the aquamancer continued to move inside him, they found that all of Axel's body was heating up. Demyx just groaned, sluicing more water over the `anorexic' Nobody to the point where steam was clouding up the room like a makeshift sauna, with the redhead as the coals. In all the commotion, even the clones had to be fed to the heat.
Now with their breathing ragged, bodies hard and wanting, hips rocking harshly back and forth they were coming to the end of this escapade. There had been no tenderness in this, no gentle touches or sweet caresses, no words of comfort offered, but they found themselves craving for that final peak, that last rush before the world tilted and gave way before the blinding gray of `anti-pain', `anti-numb', `the ultimate distraction from nonexistence'.
For Nobodies did not feel . . .
With Axel's heat blaring agony between them, he howled out as he was hit that final time. And when he tightened hard around Demyx, the blond couldn't keep himself in check and spilled forth with a resounding wail of his own.
Many a long silent minute passed before either said or did anything, and when they did it was only because number VIII felt the slender body draped over him shaking from the force of repressed sobs.
“Dem?” He lifted a shaky hand up to lift the flaxen head.
“He was my heart, Ax. Why'd ya haf ta do it? He was my heart . . .” And he started to ball outright.
He tried shushing him, pulling his face closer. “Demy, come on man. Listen to me. I didn't want to, you know that I knew he meant something to you. And why would I wanna make things bad for you?” Okay, they had to change positions soon because he was starting to hurt. “Remember Xemy? He wanted all the traitors gone. He was willing to kill off everyone in that castle. He's fucking paranoid, and all he gives half a shit about is his goddamned research and theories and experiments and all the other useless crap he plays around with!”
The sitarist sniffled. “Like SaÃ¯x?” The joke was followed by a tiny giggle. And it was answered with a smoky chuckle.
“Yeah, like dog-boy.” The pryomancer nuzzled his nose into spun amber, and inhaled the scent of warm honey carried on an ocean breeze. “Tell you the truth? I was working on getting him out with me and the replica. No lie. I had the copy, and was heading to Zexy to tell him we needed to run, let everything sort itself out. I was gonna stay behind `cause I was fairing better then him. But then he said what he said and . . . I had planned on telling the fake Riku that Organization Thirteen wasn't completely filled with idiots, and that maybe we could have helped him--”
“Wait,” the sea-eyed male furrowed his brows, “but the Superior doesn't want Roxas to know about Sora's life. He doesn't want him to get any memories of him, and wouldn't a copy of his best friend . . . make him remember shit?”
Red fluttered left and right. “I said I wouldn't lie to you, not the clone. He was pretty much a walking test subject at that point. Maybe Xemnas would have taken him under wing, maybe he would have dissected him. Don't know, and don't care. Though with the way things went down for the real thing, you can bet we'll all be getting extra missions.”
“How you figure?” Heaven graced him with the wonderful insight that his captive wasn't all that comfy. With a shrug he slid lean legs to either side of him to the sound of an appreciative groan. So what if he hadn't pulled out? Axel was all warm.
“Mansex's Heartless is still inside the kid, remember?” Maybe lack of blood to his brain brought out the blond characteristics in Demyx. He did teeter on the edge of light brunet at times.
“Yeah, but, he still needs to put his own heart through the whole process thingy hearts go through and join up with Kingdom Hearts, right? And that can't happen if the kid is holding his Heartless.” He cuddled a little closer to the familiar heat, and breathed in the sweet scent of cinnamon--the mint kind that burned one's mouth when chewed as a gum--along with the heady fragrance of smoke.
“Oi, what the hell Dem?”
“You're warm, and I'm not. And you took my Zexy away, so I'm claiming you as my bitch for the week. At least.”
“Horn-dog.” He pushed at the other's forehead. “How often did you two screw?”
He beamed. “Every spare waking minute!” His eyes had that insane glint to them again.
A roll of emeralds. “My poor ass, I hardly knew you! Ugh, fine I guess I own you that much. Can we at least see the damage done to me?”
A soft pout from the musician. “But then I'd have to move . . .”
Axel narrowed his eyes. “Fine, be that way. Not my fault if we get gelled together.” Except--shit. Coagulated blood was not a pleasant thing to experience or peel off one's self. And he'd have to break open anything that had started to heal. “On second thought, forget it. Out of me, now.”
After a minor shoving match, and some more pouting and name calling, Demyx backed off and Axel got to see the inky water that still clung to the other. “Yep, I see a bit of blood welling down there.” The blond seemed to be pondering something as he spoke.
“Fuck.” He dropped his crimson head back onto the mattress.
“Okie.” And the water child started to shift back into place.
“I didn't mean it like that!” Demyx stilled. “I think I need a potion,” Axel considered his current company, “or fifty.”
“Lightweight.” He scoffed.
“Hey!” Heated fingers swatted at the other. “Unlike some, I don't like to bottom if I can get around it.” Not that Demyx needed to know about his minor `sadistic-dominatrix' fetish.
The aquamancer just continued laughing as he stood and strode over to the bookcase across the room from them. Taking in the minor destruction he stated, “Damn. Good thing the important stuff is waterproof.”
“What about fire?” He wasn't going to risk sitting up too much, but settled for leaning up on his elbows.
“Ah,” the blond had to stop at that. “Find out later?” He accented the question with a shrug. Anything he was insanely afraid of burning was not out in the open for the worlds to see.
One of them was no longer in the worlds.
He would cry again later . . . after he'd tricked Axel into some kind of binding agreement that made the other permanently his bitch/shoulder to cry on/any sort of position that would prevent the redhead from forgetting or living down what he'd done to him and his Zexy.
“So how's that potion coming along?” He'd noticed that number IX had paused in his venturing, most likely in thought.
“Hmm?” Aquatic eyes glanced over to him again.
“Oi,” Axel flopped onto his back again. “I've been fucked, and I can't get up!” He smirked at the other's laughter. “Yeah, yeah, rape's a goddamned picnic. I seriously can't get the hell up Dem.”
The sitarist continued to rifle through his bookcase, and other adjoining shelves for more things to fit into his cradling arm. “Okie, I admit I was out of it, but what just happened here was a case of `Surprise Sex', not rape. Hell, I'm even shocked at myself.” Besides, didn't the victim have to unwilling? And didn't unwillingness spring from--UUuuuu, Starburst! 
“Surprise Sex? . . . Are you being real?! My ass is bleeding!” Axel folded his arms over his chest as he pouted. “First I get walked all over by the idiot barraged for the sake of Xem's newest pet project, and then I get abused by you! Oh yeah, I feel really loved tonight.”
“Ax, do you want lemon or pink?”
He could feel his brain splintering. “What?”
“I think I got some red and orange ones too.” The sound of plastic crinkling drew in the curious green gaze of the fire starter.
“Hey Dem? One, where'd they come from? And two, how long have you had them?” Because he couldn't have been listening to him complain. . . .
Demyx sweat-dropped as he thought about his answers. “Um . . . I don't know, and, I don't know? At least they're still chewy!” He turned to walk back to the bed, arms almost overflowing with bottled glowing stars and the occasional moons. The blond carefully unloaded his arms onto the night-stand by his bed.
“Hell yeah, pass me a Hi-potion?” Number VIII piped up hopefully. The other simply chuckled and he repositioned himself on the bed between lean legs.
“No can do. Drinking will take care of the ache, but it'll do jack-shit for the rips, tears, and all around bleeding. So,” he grabbed up one of the lager jar/bottles and a smaller one, “I'll need to apply it directly.” And with a smirk he handed the smaller potion to Axel for consuming orally.
“Ah, thanks m--” Insight bitch-slapped him and his hand stopped just shy of his mouth. “But, I'm bleeding internally.”
“Yep!” The musician happily hummed, having already poured some of the liquid into his palm. “But look on the bright side, I know firsthand that it makes for some of the best lube!” 
Axel nearly face-faulted. “You're going to fuck me again? Wait, you guys used potions?!”
“Uh-huh.” Working the not-so-thin substance onto his dexterous fingers, he answered matter of fact-ly. “It lubes, it heals, and it makes things just generally feel better then normal. Besides,” he had started rubbing in slow methodical circles around the sorely abused opening, to the appreciative groans of the taller. “You said I owned your ass for the week.”
“I fully agreed to that.” His red covered head lolled back onto the bed. “There was just a silent `now' to that question.” A strong shudder passed through him.
“Oh. Okie then; now. Hopefully into the mattress.” It was chirped out as cheerfully as one greeted a friend. Axel shook his grinning head in disbelief, until Demyx slowly started to push his fingers into him. The fire starter leaned up again, and quaffed the potion in his hand before he lost the ability to think. Setting the empty bottle by the other full ones, he took up two large handfuls of the sheets as he willed his lower body to relax.
The blond was meticulous in his ministrations, using two delicate fingers to smooth the Hi-potion into the battered walls of his captive. He was searching out every rip, tear, and likewise bleeding wound. Besides, he owned him for now, and it wouldn't do for him to break yet, at least like this. There were other more satisfying things he could do to the firebug. He pulled out slightly to dribble more of the celestial concoction onto his fingers before edging them back in. Turning his wrist slightly he ventured further into rapidly heating territory slicking every inch with the magical drink. Soon he was able to scissor his fingers, stretching the other wide.
Speaking of the other, he was hissing.
“Oi! Gently!” Oh yeah, Nobodies couldn't feel emotions, but they could feel physical pain just fine. Actually, they could feel everything that dealt with physical, or biological, sensations and stimuli with uncanny clarity. Like heightened even. It was the only reason any of them (namely Mansex) could get off. Axel dropped down onto the bed, his back having arched from the pain. Yes, he was really feeling all the `love' of tonight.
“Heh, sorry.” Demyx resumed his actions, albeit with a softer touch. This was going to be an interesting round two, to say the least. “Just a little more, and then I can stick `me' in there to get to the hard to reach places and aches.”
“Yeah, yeah, likely story.” The firebug rolled his eyes.
“No, really! If I tried to get all the way up there with my hand, I'd just be ripping you open again.” Demyx puffed out his chest proudly. “It takes a ton of dedicated training and bottoming to be able to take a fist without breaking.”
Axel's eyebrow arched. “Too much info Dem. Waaaaaaaay too much info.”
Demyx just widened his grin. “Dude, size matters. The bigger the object is, the more intense the sensations are.” His bedfellow had to bite back whatever retort he was about to give, as the blond chose that moment to scissor his fingers one last time. “I think that'll do it for prep.”
“Oh goody.” The redhead chuckled humorlessly. It may not hurt (as much) this time, but he still didn't want to bottom again. He watched as the other pulled back to slather the remainder of the Hi-potion over his hardened form, the length in question seeming to firm up and plump out slightly after the application. The firebug groaned, he was seriously going to have to try potions on his next solo flight--or when he topped Demy.
“Okie.” The blond put the empty jar/bottle aside and shifted on his knees. Axel grabbed all the pillows he could to support his back while the sitarist called back a few water clones to help him with the redhead's legs again. “Just remember, deep breaths man. Deep breaths.” And once the taller Nobody had taken a gulp of air into his lungs, Demyx began to push himself in.
The pyro sighed in contentment, feeling that the potion was indeed getting to all those hard to reach places. His fire called to him, and the heat that welled where his heart should have been commenced to creep through his veins. As the water child started to move within him again, the jungle eyed youth fisted the sheets below him. His hands were taken up by the clones at the first few curls of smoke that escaped from the cloth, and placed in the musician's capable grasp.
“Dude! Quit it!” He had to sleep in this bed.
“I burn shit when I climax, O.k.? Ya know, body heat skyrockets during sex and all that? Doesn't take a genius to connect the dots.” Besides, the bed had to have been sopping wet from everything, so how was he supposed to know that the covers could have caught on fire?
“Oi, I'm stealing you Asbestos gloves next chance I get.” Unless he could burn things with any part of his body . . . Yep, there went Axel's chance at topping him. No way in Helheim he was going to risk internal scalding from Number VIII.
“Wuss.” And he moved his hips in experimentation. Ah, much better than last time.
“Jerk-off.” He answered the movement by threading their fingers together once more as he pulled out slightly.
This time there wasn't much talking, save for the occasional name calling and endearing egging each other on. It was also a little slower, a tad smoother, less harsh, and with more facial interaction at least. Mostly that was from Axel shoving his tongue down Demyx's throat with the occasional biting switching between them. As before, when the firebug became too hot for the aquamancer to handle, he started to dump water over the searing flesh. Steam billowed off of the lanky Nobody in droves, creating a fog bank in the confined room.
Somewhere in his addled mind, the redhead noticed that the act was prolonged for some reason that he'd have to ask the blond about when he could think properly again. But the potion was making all the difference. It made his innards feel tingly and more sensitive, as well as possibly making him giddy. And--though he would never admit it--he did detect the difference in the size and feel of Dem's presence within him, which--since he wasn't admitting things--did feel sooooo much better because of the potion. Yes, this was not the best fuck of his life, but it was one of the top fucks of his non-life.
And when that burning coil at last snapped inside him, and he constricted hard around the other, he could hear the oceanic eyed boy call out with him (in a pained voice, seeing as Axel was almost crushing his hands from clenching his fists around them). Once sated, the pair collapsed back onto the poor and abused bed, pulling close and snuggling against each other.
Things were quiet, with Demyx breathing evenly as he thought of his late love and ways to torture his new bedfellow. For his part, Axel was just blankly staring at the random band posters that littered the all too white walls and ceiling of the room. He remembered the time when they had gone off world together to steal some black paint to rectify the gleaming surfaces, only to be thwarted by the innate nature of the castle to repel all pigments. For their troubles he and IX had ended up as black as their robes for about two weeks. That was almost as crazy as the time just after Roxas had arrived--and more than slightly before shortstuff had started to be anything but neutral or annoyed with him--and illustrated how easy it was to open up all the freaky random treasure chests that appeared out of fucking nowhere around the nonexistent world. 
“Heh . . .”
Demyx raised a curious brow. “Hmm?”
“Just reminiscing. Remember when Rox first keyed a treasure box? And then for like the next month everyone was running around bashing them open?” He grinned at the insanity.
“Yeah,” a brilliant grin broke onto the musician's face. “All because the opened boxes vanished by the next day. That was so wrong, even Xem got into it because he wanted to `cut down on the clutter around the world'. And then, remember his face when we found out that even after we finally polished them all off, more just started to show up? Aw, that was so crazy--Oh! That's where I got the candy from!”
Axel did a double-take. “Who with the what now?”
“My first box! I hit it too hard, and it smashed in half. So I think I fucked up whatever should have been inside and got the candy instead.” Demyx continued to beam at the other.
“You mean . . . you smashed open a `Bulky Vendor'?” Xemnas did still like to create new Heartless, as did his other half. And he wouldn't put it past numbers II through VI to have engaged in the same activities.
“No,” Demyx deadpanned, “I smushed a box; a treasure box.” He leaned up from the redhead. “I'm blond, but I'm not blond enough to mistake a box for a Heartless. `Sides, Heartless wiggle and run around when we try to squish `em, and I can never catch any of the Vendors.”
“Couldda been a prototype from Sex.” Axel leaned up himself and scooted out from under the other to sit beside his watery companion. “And that reminds me, my clothes are fireproof.” He chuffed the other upside his head. “So it's your own damn fault for being burned.”
“Alright, I got it, I got it.” He rubbed at the abused side of his head. “Next time, you keep your gloves on. Shit you're pissy tonight.” Maybe he wouldn't share his Starburst with him.
“For good reason!” The green eyed boy huffed. “Castle O was almost a complete failure, and I'm gonna catch shit about it for the next month from Xemmy. I swear if he puts me on detail for hunting Riku, I'll let you drown me.”
“Deal. What?! Don't give me that look, you said I could. And I'll keep that promise. Now why was it an `almost' instead of a `complete' failure? Sounded like everything went horrible.” The Nocturne sat back on his haunches, leaning against his bed's footboard.
“Not counting Ansem's survival? Vexie pulled off something crazy. He turned some of Roxas' memories into a card. Modeled an entire floor off of Twilight Town.”
“And? What's the big deal about him turning some copied data into a car--”
“He pulled the memories out of Sora's heart.” Axel was grinning, and his grin only widened into a smiling laugh as he watched Demyx do his impression of a mystified fish. “I know, it's crazy, isn't it? It shows that Nobodies have tentative connections to the hearts that spawned them. Meaning we have a connection to our hearts too, wherever they are. Isn't that great Demyx? It means that it's only a matter of time before we find our hea--”
“He was right.” The blond had a vacant look in his watering eyes. “He was really right. I believed him and he was right.”
“Dem?” Axel feigned worry. 
“Zexion was right, he was really right about our hearts. He had said--he had theorized the whole thing, and this goes to show that he was right, he was so totally right. By Odin, he really is  a seer! Zexion told me the same thing, that we all have a connection to our hearts and Heartless. It's all complicated, because a pureblooded Heartless comes from a heart that's essentially overrun and destroyed by darkness, and `emblems' are all artificial, so those hearts are just trapped in darkness.”
“Whoa, Dem, breathe.” The dancing flame motioned with his hands for the other to calm down. “Breathe, and start over.”
There was silence again as the blond steadied his nerves and ordered his thoughts. After a time he found that he was able to speak clearly again.
“Once . . . Once I asked Zexy why he thought Xemnas always had a stick up his ass when the rest of us could at least fake our feelings. It was just random pillow talk, nothing serious, but . . . Zex told me he thought it had to do with Xem's Heartless being all sentient and running free around the worlds. Like, you, me, and some of the others, Zexion was pretty sure that our heartless had been destroyed or purified or whatever happens to release our hearts, and that it happened either right as or right after we were created. So, with us, we got turned into Heartless, and then after the leftovers got shipped to Twilight Town, but before we woke up, our Heartless were squished.”
“And that has to do with our ability to fake it how?”
“Look, living things, when you brake their parts down into categories, what are the four terms everyone uses? Mind, body, heart and soul. A Heartless is the heart corrupted, and that leaves the rest for the Nobodies. We're the leftover mind, body, and soul. And when a body dies, the soul is released, to get reincarnated, right? The mind goes, the heart goes, the memories stay--albeit buried--and the soul ends up reborn. But the heart only dies with normal humans, not with `emblem' Heartless--and the rules are probably different for normal Heartless too. So think about it: If the mind has a strong tie to the soul--if the heart has a strong tie to the mind and soul--then if the heart is released, which would it prefer? Going off to a new life? Or going off to it's old one, it's old body?”
Demyx looked at Axel, and the redhead could only stare at the other. It did make a kind of sense, sort of. “But you said it yourself, the heart has to go through Kingdom Hearts in order for us to claim it as our own.”
“Ah,” the musician held up his index finger, “as our own. Mansex isn't having us search out our own hearts, he's having us collect bunches of them. We're playing a game of odds. Grab enough hearts, and one of them's bound to bond to you.”
“Zex tell you that too?” The fiery male asked incredulously. No way Dem could have thought that all up on his own.
“Yeah.” That dreamy look was in his eyes again. “He was so sure, so sure that if our hearts were released, they would eventually come back to our bodies. Sure, if a long time had passed between the initial separation, when the Heartless and Nobody were made, and when the Heartless is/was destroyed, then the heart would probably go to Kingdom Hearts first--`cause it would be all disoriented. But if only a little time had passed, then the heart would go to the Nobody. Except . . . because the connection had been interrupted, it would take some time for them to get all of their feelings back.”
Number VIII was still skeptical. “So Mansex is such a hardass because his Heartless is still trapped in a human. But Roxas and NaminÃ© are so human like because . . . ?”
“Their hearts are still human. And Vexen proved that Sora has a connection to Roxas, which means that Roxas must have a connection to him. I mean, if it's possible to unite a Nobody with a heart, a Heartless with a human, what about a human with their Nobody? What do you think would happen if Sora and Roxas ever met?”
The firebug shrugged. “No idea. Maybe they'd hit it off. But if what Zexy told you is true, then if they met, the longer Roxas hangs out with him, the more like him he'd become.” Then he suddenly remembered the replica that he'd left behind. “Shit, or he'd become his own person, capable of feeling things independent of Sora. But that's all a slim shot compared to . . .” No, no that was too horrible to think, that Roxas and NaminÃ© would just be assimilated into the humans they'd come from. No, that would be too cruel a fate, to live behind someone else's eyes for the rest of your life when your friends would probably never meet you in the next one.
Even if he was a cast off soul, if he wasn't supposed to exist, why would the Gods allow him to have another life?
“Compared to what?”
“Huh? Oh! Oh, nothing, I outsmarted myself. My train of thought derailed and everything. So yeah.” The redhead rubbed his hands over his arms. “I think I need to get dressed before I start torching the sheets to keep warm.”
Demyx pouted as he waved him off. “Fine. Go.”
The anorexic pyro stood with a wince. “Damn,” he placed his hand to the small of his back, “that's gonna be a bitch. So . . . we good again?”
Aquatic eyes glanced up from absorbing all the misplaced water from his bed and room. “You still my bitch for now?”
Fire frowned. “Yeah.”
Water smirked. “Then we're good.”
With that Axel left via a dark portal, some of his energy having apparently returned to him. Demyx continued to turn that last little piece of information over in his head.
So, they really weren't delusional. Those last few times, when he and his schemer found themselves buried in the heat of passion, it was real. Their hearts, their hearts had been coming back to them--had come back to them. With tears streaming down his face, Demyx realized the horrible truth, they really had been able to feel, and now his heart had been destroyed again. He had finally gotten it back, after being caught in the void of unfeeling for so long, after floating in twilight, turned away by both light and dark, he and Zexion had beaten the odds and their hearts were coming back to them rather than being reincarnated on some distant worlds, where they would never see each other again in the next life.
Now Zexion was truly dead and gone, and who knew how long the gods waited until they put someone's soul back into the big ether to be scooped out later for rebirth? Who knew how long they stayed in the ether after being placed in there, the very nature of the place swallowing the memories of one's past life, tucking them deep inside the soul only to ever be revealed again when the heart attuned to it was similar to the heart that originally made the forgotten memories?
Demyx could only cry harder with truth glaring bright before him. His one hold on sanity was gone, all gone and he was left here to fade away on his own. And he was positive he would, positive his mind would corrode to nothing, and then he'd be a completely different person, just like the other Nobodies had changed from their past selves. It had already been happening to him, he could feel it. There were times when it was so hard to hold on to the carefree, smiling nature he once had, and so easy, seductively easy, to let the bleakness in, to just let go of the last remnants of his emotions and embrace the raging numbness that eventually won out over all Nobodies.
But what hurt the most was knowing that Zexion was right. Zexion had walked into that deathtrap of his own free will. He had gone in to test what Axel had said Vexen had confirmed. The heart's connection to it's body--bodies--and soul was stronger than what he and the others had originally thought. And that knowledge couldn't soothe the pain in his dying--dead--heart, the pain of knowing that whatever life Zexion was reborn into, the odds were against him of being a part of it.
All he could do now was wait for his death, and pray for their reunion. For Zexion was a seer, he had made predictions in the past, and they had all come to pass. And the one prediction that stuck in his mind was the one prediction he was never meant to hear--how the Organization would come to an end.
Their Ragnarok. Their “Destruction of the Powers”.
Xemnas had attempted to circumvent the prognostication by refusing membership to NaminÃ©, as it would be `one of light' that brought down the Organization. To hedge his bets, he also forbade any of the other Nobodies to tell Roxas of Sora's past. But given what Axel had said, Demyx feared he would not face his demise from within, but from without.
As he figured things, if Roxas didn't kill them all for keeping secrets, Sora would, just to stop them from creating more Heartless. And Axel had helped to kill the one person who would have been able to destroy Sora, or at least find him across the worlds. He had helped to end the life of the one person in the Organization that could have saved them, could have trapped the Keybearers in their own minds and left them as sitting ducks for Xemnas to experiment on as he saw fit.
He--they--would all die because Axel was so shortsighted and lived only in the moment.
That was the last thought he had before he cried himself out. When all was said and done, Axel would be the death of them all; because as any child could tell you:
Fire produced light.
 Lexaeus' death differs between KH: CoM game, manga, and CoM FM+. In the first, he uses the last of his life-force to throw all the darkness he can at Riku to force out `Ansem' to take control of the kid. In the remix, he knocks Riku out, and then `Ansem' takes over to kill Lex. I think in the Manga Riku just out and out battles him to death. Because of the differences, I chose to leave it vague, seeing as what Axel's fate turned out to be . . . .
 If you have read or watched `Fruits Basket' (FuRuBa), think Yuki. But only when half-asleep.
 In the Manga, they were eating something along the lines of `KFC'. Really! They even make fun of it in one of the omake [gag strips] at the end!
 Random name for the home world of Axel & Demyx's Somebodies; because Midgard (which comes from Norse Mythology & means `middle-earth') was already taken by a Square-soft game. Will reedit this if/when that information is revealed in the manga/games. No, they aren't from FF7 world, they were in fact Vikings. . . . Axel follows Loki, and I'm working on Demyx, who so far looks to be following Aegir [sea] and Bragi [poetry] and maybe Njord [sea] (and they both respect Odin and the Aesir, maybe the Vanir) . . . . Go read chapter 5! I figured it all out while I was writing chapter 5.
 No, Demyx is not the Nobody of a stereotypical rock artist that did drugs. His Somebody just happened to know some.
 If you can find a copy of the game script--like I have--read it real carefully. They keep insinuating that the Riku Replica is more or less Riku's Nobody. One omake even had him telling the real Riku that he'd continue on as his `shadow'. (Actually . . . fuck I have to edit this. There were a lot of differences between the game and the manga. Okay, as of now this and the larger fiction are officially an AU fusion of the games and manga rather than just a `what if?' fic solely based off the games.)
 Not mine! Me No own!
 Thank you `WolfGrrl' [of AdultFanFiction.Net] for the idea of how to use potions. ^.^
 Thank you `Yami396' [of MediaMiner.Org] for your crack-licious Org. XIII fic . . . and your shameless PWP . . . and for explaining where all the random objects and treasure chests included in fanfiction about `The World That Never Was' come from.
 Since he can't actually `feel' worry . . . but it amounts to the same thing.
 Freudian slip. Demyx is referring to Zexion as it's still hard for him to admit/grasp that he's dead.
A/N: While this is a one-shot, I will attempt to answer any reviews I get for this. If your e-mail is hidden, then look for replies in chapter 6(+) of `AoT: CwBd'. Other than that . . . give me a way to contact you if you want a reply. Who knows, I might repost this later as the first part in a series/anthology of `explanation sides' . . . but that's in fate's hands.
Oh, there's someone out there who stated exactly what I believe about the Nobodies in a succinct fashion that I could never hope to copy. The writer is `Love-child of Marluxia', the story is “Aromatherapy”, and it's posted at [Mediaminer.org].
Rawr. I feel unloved because I lost several paragraphs and some corrections to numbered notes of this while I was writing. Basically, I changed shit, and then my laptop happened to turn off on my way home, without saving . . . so I had to think up/remember how I wanted things to go. Grrr . . . just grrr.
Oh, and as for Zexion being a seer . . . there is no canon evidence for it. However . . . I get that vibe from him, seeing as his powers are all mentally based that he could theoretically get random visions. That, and I needed a good solid reason for Xemnas to order everyone to keep information about Sora away from Roxas other than, “It's canon, deal with it.” Bah . . . to this day it confuses me why they never told him anything about Sora, and--different note--why/what the hell Riku was lying to himself about to the point that he needed to blindfold himself rather than look himself in the mirror. I swear in the Japanese version, it's probably something like a focus to help him attune to the darkness, like forcing his powers/blind sight to activate . . . .
Ack, sorry. Shutting up now. Reviews?