Chapter Fifteen – All Along
It was the funny thing about dreams, or honestly not amusing but more like cruel, that they reminded you of your worst fears and guilts when you finally thought life was turning around on you. When you finally held in your hand happiness, gripping it so tightly that you knew, just knew, you would never let go ever again. If you even had it in the first place.
Dreams were vicious, phantasmal creations slyly slipping into your mind with all the stealth of a master thief. They teased you at first, with happy thoughts and reminders of all the good things that you had mercifully been granted. And then the pain came, the death of a loved one, the splash of blood against the scion blue of a cloudless sky, the end of a world, the loss of your heart. A thousand tiny memories that you thought you had forgotten, rising to the surface in your moment of weakness.
Axel, for the record, hated his dreams. He clung to them while in Gaia’s Grotto since they were all the memory he had, but since his escape, he had learned to despise them. Nothing but his failures, his selfishness, things that he could never grasp again. Roxas was in his dreams, but they were visions of the past, a not-so-subtle reminder that he had done nothing to make the blond stay.
Even now, with Roxas in his arms and sharing his bed, Axel hated his dreams. His calm and peace, the easing of his fears, were shattered by those dreams. He saw Reno and Quistis and Vexen and Zexion. He saw everyone he had wronged and he smelled the blood in his nostrils. He felt the heat of the orange flames dancing on the tips of his fingers.
It brought the guilt crashing down on him, like the waves of some vast ocean, until it felt like he couldn’t breathe from their sinking depths. Like hands were wrapped around his neck, squeezing with invisible frozen fingers. Like a heaviness had settled on his chest, the weight of a thousand iron presses. It woke him from his restful sleep, jerking him into wakefulness and very nearly disturbing Roxas.
Axel blinked sleepily, eyes catching the gleam of an alarm clock that informed him he had been asleep for little more than two hours. His usually cold body was actually warm, a blanket by the name of Roxas pressed close to his side. The younger boy sprawled as he slept, arms and legs akimbo but head remaining doggedly against Axel’s chest. Moonlight gleamed silver through the window, illuminating the room in a pale glow and outlining the stacks of books everywhere.
The fire starter shifted, heart pounding a rhythm he didn’t understand in his chest and filling his legs with restlessness. He knew he wouldn’t be able to remain in the bed. Axel eased gently away from the slumbering blond, who mumbled something grumpily but released his hold on Axel anyways.
Rolling over briefly, Axel pressed a kiss to Roxas’ forehead before sliding out of the bed. His bare feet landed on the cold wood and he shivered briefly. Casting a tired emerald gaze over the floor, Axel snagged the pants he was wearing earlier and pulled them up over slim hips, not bothering with any sort of underwear. Dressed enough for public viewing, he crept from the room, his agitation keeping him from remaining within without unnecessarily awakening Roxas.
The door managed to shut without making a sound behind him and Axel paused in the hallway, taking a deep breath. It didn’t ease the clenching in his chest. It still felt as if voices were screaming in his head, and there was a coiling of something faint, something tainted in his gut. Craning his ears, Axel listened intently, but heard no other sounds in the house. It seemed absolutely still and considering that it was near two in the morning, most everyone was probably asleep.
Rather than wandering around the dark streets of Radiant Garden and frightening the residents, Axel opted to borrow Vincent’s favorite brooding spot. Creeping silently down the halls, he headed for the stairs that connected to the roof.
Minutes later, he emerged onto the slated roof, a wash of cool air brushing over his bare skin. He shivered briefly, more surprised by the chill than actually cold. Leaving the trapdoor open, Axel plopped down onto the roof and lay on his back, crossing his arms behind his head. His eyes lifted to the night sky, stars twinkling brightly above him.
He vaguely remembered a time when he had watched them blink out, one by one. Of course, it wasn’t his memory but Lae’s, the man he was before he became Axel. Axel tried not to think of that time, because he wasn’t that man anymore. The heartless side of him when they separated, that was Lae. Axel was just plain Axel. It hurt his head to make it any more complicated.
Besides, he had enough pain just thinking about his own mistakes, much less Lae’s.
He didn’t want to keep running through the same ills in his mind however. He had thought enough about Reno and the Nobodies he had wronged. His head spun with all of the fragile, twisting emotions and frankly, it wasn’t helping the pain in his chest to keep going over the same arguments and thoughts.
It was an awful truth that Axel had made a lot of mistakes. And it was a pure miracle that he had been granted the gift of Roxas’ return. He wasn’t sure what to do about that. It seemed incredibly unfair.
He thought of Gaia’s Grotto then, and what he had suffered there. Though the pain wasn’t as physical as torture, the mental anguish was enough to make him shudder. Yet, he had escaped, which only served to remind him of those he had left behind. Demyx, for one, his only true friend outside of Roxas when they had all been part of the Organization. Quistis, whom he had only known briRateefly but was considered a comrade for the memories she hadn’t been able to save.
Axel now knew that those who had inspired flashes of memory within him were also members of the Organization. Marluxia, Zexion, Xemnas, they were still there as well. And even if he didn’t know any of the other residents, the fact remained that none of them should have to stay under the council’s rule. Axel wasn’t a hero by any definition of the word, but the guilt wouldn’t fade either.
In his mind, he could still see Reno’s grinning face, hopeful to the last second that he would return to the man he loved.
Axel sighed. Things were so much simpler when he was apathetic and selfish.
“That’s certainly not the sound of someone who should be the happiest man in Radiant Garden.”
He tilted his head to the side, surprised by the voice especially since he hadn’t felt or heard anyone approaching. It was Vincent, his head barely cresting over the top of the ladder as he emerged onto the roof. There was a strange and piercing expression in his glowing, crimson eyes.
Emerald eyes returned to the night sky. “I thought everyone was gone or asleep,” he commented lightly. Why Vincent was creeping around Merlin’s house when he should be home boinking Cid was beyond Axel’s comprehension.
Oblivious to Axel’s inner thoughts, Vincent sat down beside him, wings rustling as he settled into place. “They are,” he responded. “I just happened to be awake.”
Short claws tapped against the slates of the roof. “I take it things did not go well with Roxas?” Vincent asked once a moment of silence had passed.
Axel shook his head, a genuine smile taking over his face as his eyes sparkled. “No, things are fine… better than fine, actually.”
He could see the smirk on Vincent’s face even from the corner of his gaze. “So I see,” the winged man responded, reaching out with one hand and pressing a finger to the bite marks ringing Axel’s collarbone.
The fire starter lazily swatted him away. “You’re just jealous because I am the happiest man in Radiant Garden,” he countered, words slightly hollow. “Or at least, I should be. Guilt has a nasty habit of tainting everything.”
Vincent was quiet for a moment, watching Axel as if trying to probe beneath the surface. “You mean… about Reno, correct?” he asked, after careful consideration.
He nodded. “He was there longer than me,” Axel responded bitterly, shivering slightly as the cold slats of the roof bit into the bare flesh of his back. “He deserved to return to Rude far more than I deserve any of this but…” he paused, trailing off.
“You’ve been thinking about this for some time.”
Axel jerked into an upright position, through with watching the gleam of the stars. Instead, his eyes fell on the bright yellow lights of Radiant Garden below. “I can’t help it; I have nightmares every night,” he commented quietly, finding it much easier to spill his guts to Vincent than try and explain to anyone else. If there was someone who would understand his guilt, he knew it would be Vincent.
“Reno was such an idiot. He shouldn’t have done that.”
Wings shifted and creaked. “But he did.”
“Yeah, and now I’m happy but he’s dead. Where’s the fairness in that?” Axel sighed in aggravation, raking his hand angrily through his hair and nearly yanking out patches of it. “I keep seeing it, you know, seeing him. And it’s not like he’s blaming me or anything but…”
“No, I don’t suppose he would. Not when you’re doing a pretty good job of it yourself.”
Emerald eyes rolled as Axel shot his friend a firm glare. “Thanks, Vincent,” he sniped sarcastically, one foot idly kicking at a shingle and nearly knocking it loose. “You’re such great support. I’m glad to know that I can come to you in my hour of need.”
Vincent sniffed imperiously. “Don’t be dramatic, Axel. If you wanted comfort, you should talk to Roxas. I’m only going to tell you the truth.”
“Oh, yeah? And what’s that?” he demanded, hating how it came out somewhat immature. For the briefest of seconds, he remarked that he sounded faintly like Riku, which was irksome. The last thing he wanted was to be compared to the silver-haired keyblader.
Crimson eyes shot him a look. “Reno did what he did because he’s Reno. Not even I understand that man. But I will say this… he is free.” When Axel gave him a blank look, Vincent continued. “He might not have made his way to Rude, but he is still free. He’s no longer trapped on Gaia’s Grotto.”
Axel went quiet for a moment as he absorbed Vincent’s words. A wind stirred, causing his red spikes to wave and his skin to goosepimple. “Freedom’s all well and good but that doesn’t make Rude any less alone,” he responded quietly, the guilt clenching his heart into a throbbing mass.
“Well, then you know what you need to do.”
He blinked. “No, I don’t,” Axel replied, somewhat through clenched teeth. “Thus the reason I am up here staring moodily into the stars and mimicking you.”
The annoyed sigh emerging from Vincent’s mouth was worth it. “Keep your promise,” Vincent replied simply, ignoring Axel’s short temper. “Find Rude and give him back those glasses. Explain what happened if you must. It won’t make everything all right, but at least it will assure you that a piece of Reno managed to return.”
Axel huffed and drew his legs up to his chest, resting his arms on his knees as if he planned to go to sleep, right there on the roof. “You’re right,” he responded before adding with a somewhat bitter tone. “You’re always right.”
Vincent hummed thoughtfully. “It only appears that way.” He rose to his feet, wings stretching out behind him as if they planned on taking flight. A clawed hand reached down, playfully ruffling crimson spikes in an uncharacteristic show of affection. “You’ll be just fine, Axel. You should go back inside. Don’t make Roxas sleep alone.”
The fire starter shook his head free from Vincent’s hand and reached up to resituate his hair, watching as the winged male headed to the ladder. He didn’t even make a sound as he walked across the roof and it was only then that Axel belatedly noticed Vincent was actually dressed down and in his sleeping clothes which meant he was sans shirt. His pale skin reminded Axel of Roxas’.
“By the way,” Vincent remarked with an amused curl of his lips, dragging Axel from his wayward, perverted thoughts. “Cid says you owe him a gummi ship. But since he’s such a nice guy, he’ll let you pay it off in hard labor.”
Axel scowled. “Slave driver,” he muttered to himself before raising his voice above the slight noise of the wind. “Tell his cheap ass ‘over my dead body’.”
“I’ve got it memorized,” Vincent replied dryly, giving Axel a half-salute with his hand. “Good night, Axel.”
Vincent disappeared down the trap door, leaving Axel alone on the roof. Scowling to himself for another moment more, the fire starter slowly uncoiled his long limbs and rose to his feet, brushing roof grit from his pants. His eyes gave one last rake over the buildings and their bright lights below before he turned and headed back inside, a slight shiver wracking his body. It was far too cold for him to be wandering around in just a pair of cotton sleep pants.
Within minutes, he was creeping silently down the hallway and slowly cracking open the door to Roxas’ room. The blond hadn’t shifted position in his absence, still sprawled against the covers though it did appear as if he had edged closer to where Axel had once lain, possibly seeking out the warmth of body heat.
Smiling, Axel closed the door behind him and strode purposefully towards the bed, gingerly climbing back into it so as not to wake Roxas. Sleep-mussed blond hair was positively adorable on him. Axel was unsuccessful however, and ocean blue eyes fluttered briefly open, recognizing him in a moment.
“Axel,” Roxas murmured sleepily, reaching out with one hand and grasping onto the fire starter’s arm. He quickly dragged Axel down and before emerald eyes could blink, Roxas was kissing him, dipping his tongue between Axel’s lips and slowly exploring his mouth.
Axel hummed low in his throat, throwing one knee up so that he could have better leverage. His free hand lifted and rubbed along Roxas’ bare abdomen, revealed by the shifting of covers. His skin was warm beneath Axel’s touch, smooth and silky. Roxas shivered, breaking off the kiss.
“Cold,” he mumbled, licking his lips as he lifted bleary eyes to the fire starter.
Axel chuckled, unable to keep from watching his pale hand slide over Roxas’ tan skin. His body began to awaken then, warmth skirting along his flesh. “My turn?” he asked, the words falling from his lips before he realized he actually did mean them.
A moment of silence passed as blue eyes watched him before Roxas purred in his chest, stretching languidly beneath Axel’s touch. “If you think you can,” he countered challengingly, one of his hands rising to tug on the waistband of Axel’s sleep pants.
In response, Axel promptly rolled over on top of Roxas and kissed him senseless, locking his lips over the other male’s and jabbing his tongue inside. One knee edged upwards, though still clothed, finding the slowly thickening length of his younger lover. He nudged forward, smirking when Roxas moaned and arched beneath him, hands rising to cling to Axel’s upper arms.
It was pure instinct for Axel, his experience limited when it came to something like this. But he had a natural feeling that it didn’t really matter what he did. So he plunged his tongue within Roxas’ mouth, tasting deeply of the sweet taste of his new boyfriend while he pushed their bodies together, loving the warmth of Roxas beneath him.
His lips left Roxas’ mouth, trailing desperate kisses along Roxas’ jaw and allowing the blond room to breathe. Roxas’ hands managed to release their clenching hold on his arms, one hand deftly sliding across Axel’s chest and tweaking a nipple as the other flopped out to the side, digging into the rumpled covers. A muttered curse escaped Roxas’ mouth before he could stop it, only it quickly degenerated into a low moan of pleasure as Axel dipped his tongue into the blond’s ear, licking gently on the delicate shell.
A broken moan escaped the blond’s lips, his body arching closer to Axel. His hand slid between their bodies, tugging urgently on Axel’s unnecessary pants. The firestarter chuckled and drew back long enough to discard the garment before returning his lips to that delicious skin.
He dragged his mouth downwards, setting out to explore every inch of Roxas since he hadn’t taken the time to explore. His teeth and tongue scraped across pink nipples, nibbled on a flat belly and left streaks of saliva in his wake. His tongue dipped into Roxas’ bellybutton, ignoring Roxas’ sounds of protests. His hands couldn’t stop touching the blond, skirting along his sides, thumb rubbing gently over the hollow of Roxas’ hip.
“Axel,” Roxas whimpered, drawing out the syllables of the fire-starter’s name. He enjoyed it thoroughly, a trill of desire whispering down on his back as he took his explorations lower.
His tongue swirled over the bone jutting from Roxas’ hip, latching his lips on a small, dark freckle he found there. It was almost like a treasure hunt, finding all the little spots on Roxas’ body that he hadn’t known were there before. He dragged his teeth over tanned skin, sucking and biting, leaving little red marks in his wake. One hand brushed across Roxas’ chest, rolling pink nipples between his fingers. The other slid lower, sliding along the outside of his thigh. His lover shivered, arching even more into the touch.
It was slow this time, sensual and causing the air in the room to crackle with arousing energies. Axel pressed his lips to the inside of a bronzed thigh, not missing the sharp intake of breath as he kissed his way towards the weeping arousal.
His tongue slid out, brushing across the tip and tasting the precum beading at the tip. He considered the taste, grimacing slightly. Okay, so it wasn’t sweet candy but he could live with it. Besides, when it made Roxas make sounds like that breathless whimper, Axel figured it wasn’t that big of a sacrifice. His eyes flickered to Roxas’ face, taking in the flushed cheeks before setting his mind to the task in front of him.
He licked a long line from base to tip, smirking when Roxas arched and purred beneath him, fingers clenching around the bed covers once more. “Do it again,” the blond panted.
Axel couldn’t help but chuckle lightly. Ignoring the glare of doom that Roxas was attempting to send him, despite the need imprinted into his face, Axel dipped his head and closed his lips around the head of Roxas’ length. His tongue darted out, teasing the slit as he moved his lips down, taking in as much as he could. Experienced though he was, there was only so far that he could go. Not that it mattered judging from the needy whimpers locked in Roxas’ throat.
The blond arched up into his mouth and Axel quickly placed a hand on his hip, holding him down. Roxas wriggled beneath his touch, the urge to thrust likely overriding his senses. Axel remembered the feeling well. Closing his eyes, he tried to concentrate on the feel of another man’s penis in his mouth. Hot and velvety, hard against his tongue, with more of that familiar bitter taste. He gradually set his tongue to explore, mapping the contours with his lips.
A hand settled on his shoulder, fingers squeezing in need. Axel tipped his head back, flickering his gaze to Roxas’ face and lips that were just begging to be kissed again. Sweat was beginning to dot the keyblader’s brow as that attractive blush deepened. Blond hair was tousled and wild, sticking up in all directions yet Axel had never seen him look more beautiful.
Something clenched in his chest and with a parting lick to Roxas’ arousal, Axel slid his body back along his lover’s until they were face to face, grabbing the bottle of oil along the way and tucking it in an easy to reach spot. He nudged one knee between Roxas’ legs, one hand reaching up and curling around Roxas’ jaw as he turned the blond’s head towards him.
“Beautiful,” Axel teased on a whisper, though he meant every word of it.
Roxas arched beneath him, hand grabbing for Axel as he pulled their bodies together and ground his need against Axel’s hip. “Sap,” the blond countered somewhat breathlessly.
Emerald eyes rolled and dipped his head, capturing those stubborn lips between his own. He groped for the oil, drizzling it onto the blond’s belly. Roxas hissed as the cool liquid struck his heated skin but didn’t protest, kissing Axel as hungrily as he had before. Lips and teeth and tongue practically devouring the firestarter. Axel groaned deep in his throat, need tingling along his spine and making his body shudder.
He quickly swirled his fingers in the oil and headed south, dipping between Roxas’ legs. The blond seemed to part them instinctively, nearly purring as two fingers circled the puckered entrance. Nearly holding his breath, Axel slowly slipped two within. He swallowed Roxas’ gasp with his mouth, curling his fingers and searching for whatever it was that Roxas had touched last night. He knew he had found it when Roxas’ fingers clenched down on his arm and the blond growled lustfully in his throat. His hips shifted downwards, eager for more.
Feeling mischievous, Axel broke away from the possessing kiss and slid back downwards, wrapping his lips around Roxas’ arousal as he kept a constant pressure on that spot. There were no words to describe the reaction as Roxas writhed to his touch, body arching as he let out a sharp cry.
The firestarter smirked. “Too much for you, Roxy,” he teased playfully. His head dipped again, closing his mouth around the leaking head. He began a slow rhythm, counter pointing the thrust of his fingers to each suck.
Panting, face flushed, Roxas still managed a glare. “Annoying bastard,” he hissed before it degenerated into a lustful moan. His eyes fluttered shut, hands dropping down to tangle in bright strands of red hair.
Axel continued to drive his lover crazy, flitting touches of his tongue to Roxas’ straining shaft. He brushed his fingers over that spot, making Roxas cry out in pleasure before darting away again. He was only driving the blond to the brink, but watching him writhe below him was the single most arousing action he had ever witnessed.
Fingers clenched in his hair, tightening a few times as Roxas’ hips shifted, not knowing whether to thrust up into Axel’s mouth, or down against the invading fingers. He was poised on an edge of indecision, body dangling on a precipice of pleasure. Still, Axel grimaced when his hair was suddenly gripped tightly and his head pulled upwards.
He winced at the sharp pain stabbing his scalp. “Ow,” the fire starter whined, the sound falling silent when he saw the ardent need in ocean blue eyes.
“Stop teasing!” Roxas growled, leaving no room for argument.
“Fine,” Axel agreed with another wince. “Just let go of my hair.” He might have sounded like he was whining, but damn, that hurt.
Inordinately pleased with himself, Roxas released his hair. Axel rubbed his head as he shifted positions, perched between Roxas’ legs and hovering just over the smaller male. “Stubborn, impatient brat,” he murmured, leaning down to look directly into bright blue eyes with a definite curl of his lips.
“Manipulating, irritating asshole,” Roxas countered without missing a beat.
The former Nobody chuckled and bent his head, kissing Roxas. He wondered why he even thought for one moment that sex between them would be anything less than a battle of some form. He reached down, swirling his fingers through the drizzled oil and quickly slid them across his own aching arousal. Sufficiently lubricated, he guided himself to Roxas’ entrance.
The blunt head of his member pressed against the puckered muscle as his free hand groped for Roxas, intertwining their fingers together. He slowly began to press forward, inch by painstaking inch. Roxas hissed and threw his head back, breaking off the contact of their lips as Axel’s mouth moved to Roxas’ throat. At his sharp cry, Axel paused however, concern overriding his need.
Until a hand slapped down on his back, fingernails digging into pale skin. “Don’t you dare stop,” Roxas demanded throatily, Axel clearly feeling the vibrations on his lips.
“Whatever Roxas wants,” Axel murmured, shifting his hips forward and pressing slickly into clenching heat. He panted, a moan escaping from his lips as he pressed his forehead to Roxas’ collarbone. Any control he might have thought he had went spiraling out the window. There was simply too much to take in at once.
Roxas clenching around him, writhing beneath him. Their sweaty, warm skin pressed together. His fingers entwined firmly with Axel’s. There was a silence that seemed to envelop them, broken only by their voices and their aroused, quick breathing. And with his real and true emotions, those brought about by that beating organ in his chest, it seemed to break over him at once.
That feeling of being lost, of constantly searching, of roaming endlessly through darkened halls, forever seeking that missing piece that he had thought was his heart, it was right here, in front of him. That last puzzle corner, the one that finished the whole picture, had finally been snapped into place. It was there, in his arms, at that very moment. It sounded terribly cliché at best, like the awful romance stories that Axel had caught Yuffie reading, but he actually understood it now. That feeling that they waxed poetic on and on about. It was nearly tangible, palpable in the sex-scented air of the room.
Roxas shifted restlessly beneath him. “Axel… move,” he said in a strained voice.
The firestarter blinked out of his sudden realization. His free hand slid upwards, cupping the side of Roxas’ face and turning it towards him. He kissed the blond languidly, sliding his tongue within the others mouth as if he were something to be tasted and savored. Roxas’ nails dug into his back, a silent communication as his fingers squeezed tighter on Axel’s hold.
Axel began to move, slow and lazy thrusts. It felt so damn good that he wanted to prolong the pleasure as long as possible. Roxas panted, his body rising to meet each thrust, as he trembled, already on the edge of pleasure. It was the only drawback to Axel’s languid teasing and exploration.
“Rox,” Axel murmured, rubbing their cheeks together. “Roxas…” Nothing coherent formed from his lips. Their bodies moved together in the dim light of the room, the sounds of their heavy breathing permeating the smooth quiet. Axel shifted his angle just slightly and was rewarded for the motion when Roxas arched his back, his arousal striking something deep within the other male.
A fire, blistering and all consuming, coiled in Axel’s belly, setting his heated skin already ablaze with need. He felt the pleasure twisting inside of him, taking away all sense of composure. He finally released Roxas’ face and reached between their bodies, wrapping his fingers around the other’s erection. He stroked in tandem to his thrusts, Roxas’ fingers digging into his back tight enough to draw blood.
Yet, Axel didn’t mind in the slightest. He watched as Roxas threw his head back and moaned, losing himself to the pleasure. His face was dotted with sweat, a crimson flush spread across his cheeks and nose. Ocean blue eyes were dimmed with desire, lips glistening and swollen.
“Axel,” Roxas breathed, eyelids fluttering over his eyes, shuttering out the brilliant, almost liquid color. “Kiss me, you dolt.”
It was a request Axel could not refuse, not that he could see himself ever refusing anything Roxas asked of him. He dipped his head, groaning as Roxas claimed his mouth the moment their lips brushed. Axel’s thumb brushed over the head of Roxas’ arousal and suddenly, the blond was shuddering in his hold, spilling himself between their bodies with a muffled shout.
He jabbed his tongue into Axel’s mouth, trying to swallow the fire starter. Axel kept moving, his body surging towards climax. Roxas’ thighs clamped around him, holding him closer and riding out Axel’s speeding thrusts. It was spiking through him in a blazing heat, a trembling coil of need and Axel broke his lips away from Roxas.
His dirtied hand threw itself out against the bed, fingers clenching into the covers for leverage as he buried his face in Roxas’ neck. Axel’s fingers tightened around Roxas’, probably tight enough to cause the blond to lose circulation as his hips surged forward with one last thrust.
He stilled, moaning long and low as he came, Roxas’ name a whisper on the edge of his lips. He spilled himself deep inside of the blond, a small part of him feeling as if he were marking Roxas forever. Axel’s body shuddered and he collapsed in a sweaty, tired mass on top of his lover, madly kissing Roxas’ neck. His chest heaved as he struggled to draw in a breath, his heart beating a quick rhythm. He could feel it pulsing through his veins, the thrum of satisfaction on the edge of his conscious.
Axel didn’t want to leave the comforting warmth of Roxas’ embrace, nose pressed deep into the blond’s throat and inhaling that familiar scent. The moment was simply too good for it too end.
Unfortunately, Roxas wasn’t quite as patient.
“Heavy,” he groaned a few minutes later, though it lacked any real attempt at aggravation.
Axel sighed and gently retracted his softening organ from Roxas’ body, sliding off to the side. “Only you would let the first word from your mouth be ‘heavy’,” he teased softly.
Blue eyes rolled. “And what would you rather I say? Praises to the almighty sex god that is Axel?”
“I love you would be nice,” the former Flurry of Dancing Flames responded before his mind could register what his mouth was so abruptly blurting out. His eyes widened in surprise at himself and he quickly shifted his gaze away.
“I mean…” he faltered and sighed, realizing that he might as well admit it since it was true. “I do . I love you.” He fell silent, waiting in a growing awkward silence for some response, feeling his cheeks burn with embarrassment. “I think… that maybe–”
He finally lifted his eyes, meeting Roxas’ carefully guarded expression. It always was too easy for the blond to hide things from him. “What?”
“Shut up.” Roxas reached up and dragged him down for a kiss, pressing their bodies together and ignoring the stickiness between them. Their lips moved languidly together, something slow and gentle, different than the hungry need of before. “Love you, too, dumbass,” Roxas muttered against his lips.
Axel’s lips drew into a smile. “Such sweet words,” he countered. “Seriously, I’m turning to mush here.”
Blue eyes rolled once more. “Drama queen,” Roxas teased, nudging Axel with his shoulder. The fire starter took the hint and shifted to the side, collapsing against the bed before turning and dragging Roxas into his arms.
Predictably, the blond squirmed. “I’m a mess, Axel,” Roxas protested, but it was a mild objection at best.
“Shhh,” Axel responded, pretty much ignoring him as he buried his face in blueberry-scented hair which was making him eerily hungry. “Merlin owns a shower you know.”
“Obviously,” Roxas muttered petulantly, but settled against the taller male anyways, thereby proving Axel’s inner argument. That his lover had been protesting simply for the sake of protesting.
A moment of serene silence filtered into the room before Roxas stirred. “Where did you go?”
“To see the other secret boyfriend of mine I pulled out of the abyss,” Axel murmured sarcastically. He was surprised that the blond had noticed his absence at all. As far as he could tell, Roxas had been firmly entrenched in sleep.
Roxas promptly pinched him. “I was being serious.”
The firestarter chuckled. “I know you were.” He paused and considered, remembering what had driven him from the bed in the first place. “To the roof. I had to think about something.” He laughed lightly again. “Then Vincent basically told me to get my sorry ass back here.”
“Vincent?” Roxas repeated, a trove of unasked questions in that one, simple name.
Axel nodded sleepily, staring over a mane of blond hair at the far wall. “Remind me to tell you about Gaia’s Grotto.”
Roxas made a noncommittal sound in the back of his throat. “What did you need to think about?” he asked, almost tentatively as his fingers traced over Axel’s hand, perhaps astounded by the long, pale fingers.
He sighed. “Someone I knew died protecting me. It was stupid of him.” He paused, inching closer to Roxas as if trying to mold their bodies together. “I owe him a huge debt.”
“How are you going to repay it?”
The firestarter shrugged. “The only way I can, I guess. I want to tell his lover what happened. I don’t know where he is but I’ll find him.”
“And I suppose you want me to come gallivanting around the worlds with you.”
Axel squeezed the slim body in his hold, ignoring Roxas’ squirming and protests. “Aw, Roxy. You know you would miss me if you didn’t.”
“Like I’d miss a toothache.”
Yet, Axel knew that the blond was smiling, if only slightly. “Fine. But I want to go to Twilight Town… even if they don’t really know who I am.”
Like Axel would say no. “As long as I get to fly the gummi ship.” He had been dying to pilot one ever since Vincent had said he couldn’t. His fingers itched to dive into the steering ruts and dance over the many, shiny buttons.
“Not a chance.”
The fire wielder pouted, his hopes deflating. “What is it with you guys?” he complained. “Want to blow a thing or two up and suddenly, you can’t fly a ship? It’s not fair.”
“Axel. Go to sleep.” The voice was tired and sleepy, already slipping into slumber. Axel knew it had to be part of a result of being ‘reborn’, so to speak. He had slept on and off for three days after he had appeared in Gaia’s Grotto.
“Bossy brat,” he grumbled to himself, though he knew Roxas would be able to hear it as well. He grinned and nipped the back of Roxas’ neck with his teeth, deftly avoiding the lazy swat that came his direction.
It finally felt like home.
– – – – –
Axel was the first to awaken in the morning, mostly because it was his eyes the sun was relentlessly shining directly into. He groaned and flinched away from the oppressive brightness, but the shaft of sunlight refused to go away. Roxas’ lucky ass had his face buried in Axel’s chest, safely away from the brightness. He considered turning over and burying his own head under the covers, but his fatigue had long gone, leaving him with energy to start the day.
With a muttered curse, the fire starter eased his way out of Roxas’ strangle hold and slipped out of the bed. The blond made a murmured protest before curling his fingers into a pillow and proceeding to squeeze the life out of it. Which was kind of cute, Axel decided. Even Roxas’ forehead got that usual pinch between his brows. The one that typically meant he was perturbed, or getting there at least.
Before he got too sentimental, Axel decided it was time to leave the room. The last thing he needed to do was get all sappy. Swiping a pair of pants from the ground, Axel slipped them on. He ran a hand through his hair which was probably sticking up in all directions and crept quietly out of the room, pulling the door shut behind him. He yawned and stretched just outside, hearing bones in his back crack and pop with a satisfying, audible noise.
Around him, the house was silent, a whole lot less noisy than Leon’s would have been. Not that Axel minded the noise. It was quite different than the uneasy silence he had grown accustomed to in the World That Never Was. There, even his footsteps were far too loud, echoing long distances down the halls and automatically announcing his location. He despised it, which was why, more often than not, he was causing trouble of some kind.
The former Nobody cracked his neck then headed downstairs, the wood creaking slightly beneath his feet. A quick search informed him that Merlin was the sole occupant of the house. The magician was in his study, relaxed in a large chair with feet propped up on a stool. He was puffing on a pipe with one hand, while the other held a copy of the Radiant Reader, a small weekly publication.
“Sleep well?” Merlin asked as Axel paused in the entrance way to the study. He seemed to notice the other male’s presence without even looking up from his newspaper. Then again, Axel wouldn’t be surprised if the wizard did have eyes in the back of his head.
The fire starter nodded, unable to suppress his broad grin. “Something like that,” he remarked with amusement. “Where is everyone?”
Merlin’s newspaper lowered just slightly as he raised his eyes to the grandfather clock, happily ticking away in the corner of the room. He removed the pipe before he spoke. “Being as it is nearly noon, hard at work, I’d say. Riku and Sora are out training, if you’re looking for them.” He popped the pipe back into his mouth, letting loose a puff of blue-grey smoke that immediately formed a trio of animals, happily chasing each other in circles.
The former Nobody saluted him one-handed. “Thanks, old man,” he responded before turning back towards the stairway. Merlin’s eyes twinkled at his departure, returning to the interesting bits of news in the Radiant Reader.
Axel’s new plans generally consisted of bathing, waking up Roxas, eating, putting on some clothes, though not necessarily in that order. After talking to his boyfriend – what a great word that was – last night, he knew what their plans would be for the day. All that remained would be to talk to everyone and beg the piss out of Cid to give them a gummi ship. Which probably meant Axel would have to persuade Vincent first.
Ah, decisions, decisions.
He crested the top of the stairs, the sound of running water audible in the still quiet of the house. His brow arched as he grinned, nearly rubbing his hands together in glee. There was only one person that could have been.
Chuckling under his breath, Axel slipped into the bathroom. Steam immediately greeted him, nearly obscuring his vision of the shower curtain and tub on the other side. He crept across the floor, only to wince when it suddenly creaked and announced his presence.
The curtain slid back with a faint snap, a wet blond head poking out of the small gap. “Oh,” Roxas said, rolling his eyes. “It’s you.”
Axel snorted, and then nearly coughed on the thick steam. Damn, was he trying to boil himself in there? “Don’t look so happy to see me,” he pointed with an attempt at a pout. He began to methodically pull off his clothes, not that he had that much on to begin with.
His boyfriend disappeared behind the curtain. “You’re not joining me,” Roxas called out, water splashing and nearly drowning out his words. “Put your clothes back on.”
“What if I promise to keep my hands to myself?”
“Yeah, right.” Axel was pretty sure that Roxas was rolling his eyes again. Not that it made much of a difference.
He stepped towards the tub, still naked, and peered around the edge of the shower curtain. Soapy, wet and nude Roxas immediately filled his vision. Like Axel was going to simply turn around and walk out after seeing that. The blond had his eyes closed as he rinsed shampoo out of his hair and emerald eyes watched the suds as they slid down his body.
Ignoring Roxas’ order, Axel stepped into the relatively small shower anyways. The moment Roxas turned to rinse off the front of his body, Axel smirked and slid up behind him and wrapped his arms around him. An unmanly yelp of surprise escaped Roxas’ mouth the moment Axel’s teeth nipped at the back of his neck.
He whirled around in Axel’s hold, trying his best to look indignant while naked and sopping wet. “Axel,” he muttered in a scolding tone, narrowing blue eyes.
The fire starter shook his head. “Guess I don’t follow orders too well,” he commented with a smirk before reaching over the shorter male for the soap.
Roxas, predictably, scowled and stretched for the shampoo. “Here,” he mumbled, “wash your hair, too.” He rose up on his toes, squirting a large amount of the clear liquid in Axel’s hair.
“Hey!” Emerald eyes widened and Axel slapped a hand on the top of his head, trying to prevent the goo from sliding uncomfortably into his eyes. As a result, he loosened his hold on the soap and it tumbled to the floor.
His boyfriend promptly bent over to reclaim it and Axel couldn’t resist such an easy target. He reached out, pinching Roxas on the ass as he tilted his head back.
Roxas yelped again, flushing angrily. Axel chuckled. “Only we would fight in the shower,” he mused, one hand scrubbing at his hair and spreading around the shampoo. The thick smell of blueberries filled the shower.
The blond shrugged, using his reclaimed soap to finish washing down his body. It was nice, how wonderfully relaxed it was between them. As if they had always been lovers. There was no awkwardness or uncertainty.
Taken over by the urge, Axel leaned over and captured Roxas’ slack lips in a kiss. The blond scowled but parted his lips anyways, relenting to the affection. Axel slid his tongue into the smaller male’s mouth, tasting the minty freshness of toothpaste. Roxas’ own slid out to meet him, not shy in the slightest.
The fire starter reluctantly drew back when a stray splash of water caught him in the eye. He licked his lips, eyes gleaming down at his lover. “Now hurry up. We’ve got to go badger Aeris for breakfast.”
“Lunch,” Roxas mumbled just to be contrary.
They finished their shower quickly, dressing in record time in clothes that had mysteriously shown up for them. They didn’t even question why the bed had been made and their dirty clothing had vanished. In Merlin’s house, it was probably better not to ask. The former Nobodies threw goodbyes and thanks to Merlin over their shoulders as they escaped the old wizard’s home, his amused chuckles following them out the door.
In short, they were heading over to Leon’s where they knew Aeris preferred to do her cooking. She claimed that Leon had a bigger kitchen, which was just going to waste anyways since the man had the cooking abilities of a rock. Axel, however, knew better. Aeris liked nothing more than mothering them and he also thought that she might have been just a bit in love with Leon at one time. Or maybe it was Cloud who held her affections and she was simply waiting for him to return.
Axel really wanted to meet this guy since he seemed to hold so much sway over the people that had slowly become his friends. He had seen a picture of Cloud once, albeit by accident. The guy didn’t seem like anything special. Spiky-haired, blond, kinda like his Roxas in a way. And a frown, firmly furrowing his brow, with an overly large sword strapped to his back. The picture looked like it had been taken without his permission, likely so since Yuffie had shown it to him.
They showed up at Leon’s a few minutes later, Axel striding into the house as if it were his own and not, in fact, Leon’s. “Honey, I’m home!” he declared without so much as a knock, Roxas glaring at his back as he trailed behind him.
“In here!” Aeris’ voice filtered in from the kitchen.
Axel grinned and slinked into the kitchen, surprised to find that Vincent was there as well, the both of them seemingly conferring over a recipe.
Crimson eyes briefly looked up from the cookbook before returning his eyes to the recipe. “Someone is in better spirits,” he remarked with a hint of teasing to his voice. “Good morning, Roxas.”
The blond blinked. “It’s afternoon.” He slid into an empty seat at the table.
Aeris laughed. “Not for you guys,” she said with a waggle of her finger, a suggestive tone in her voice. “I guess you came here for some food?”
Axel shot her his best puppy eyes as he rubbed his belly. “You read my mind. How about…” he trailed off, putting a finger to his lips as he considered. “Blueberry muffins!” Seriously, he had a crazy addiction for those things.
She chuckled again. “That’s Vincent’s forte, Axel. You’ll have to beg him.”
“No.” The negative was muttered before the fire starter could even begin to voice the words.
Axel was not put off in the slightest. “Aw, come on, Vince. Can’t you lighten up now that you’re getting some?”
An eyebrow twitched, eyes narrowing into a glare. “No, Axel.”
The former Nobody was quickly on his way to a pout before he received a sudden burst of inspiration. He moved to Roxas, ignoring the blond’s wary look, and placed his hands on other male’s shoulders. He promptly rubbed cheeks with Roxas, ignoring his attempts to swat Axel away.
“But Roxas hasn’t had any yet,” he cajoled. “How can you say no to him?”
The winged male looked up at the vaguely irritated younger blond and sighed. “Fine,” he acquiesced with a grunt, rising to his feet. “But don’t tell Cid or he’ll just say that I’m spoiling you.”
“You are,” Aeris commented with a grin. She reached over and tugged on Vincent’s hair gently, turning her attention to Roxas. “How are you feeling?”
He shrugged. “Fine.”
“That’s good. Don’t be ashamed to rest if you need to.”
Annoyance flickered briefly across Roxas’ face. “I’m fine,” he reiterated.
“Aeris, don’t badger the kid.” A voice filtered in from the hallway, gruff yet good-natured, as Cid came strolling into the room. “He has to deal with Axel from now on and that’s enough trouble.”
“Hey!” Axel protested as he slid to Vincent’s side and dipped his fingers in the muffin batter the moment the winged man’s back was turned. “I’m not that bad.” He grunted then, an elbow jabbing him in the side.
Crimson eyes glared. “Keep your nasty fingers out of that. Other people have to eat it, too.”
Axel grinned, sticking the batter-covered finger in his mouth and sucking on it. “Roxy doesn’t mind,” he countered with a wink.
At the table, Roxas’ response was quick and brief. “Don’t call me that.” A faint red flush stained the blond’s features, hidden beneath an annoyed scowl.
“I think I’m going to move,” Leon announced, striding into the room and rubbing a towel over his head. “Too many people think that they can just waltz into my house uninvited.”
“Must be lunch time,” Aeris remarked to herself, figuring that the others would begin to trickle in soon as well. “Morning, Leon.”
“It’s afternoon,” he replied dryly, causing the others in the room to laugh in response, though for Vincent it was more of a light chuckle. Leon gave them looks that clearly displayed just how crazy he thought they were before continuing, “Besides, you saw me earlier, when I first left.”
At the window, chewing on a toothpick, Cid grunted. “Another shower?”
Leon shrugged and plopped down in a chair, tipping a greeting to Roxas as he did so. “I was covered in oil and monster blood, neither of which are comfortable.” He eyed Aeris. “What’s for lunch?”
She shot him a look before shaking her head. “Sandwiches,” she responded, pointing to the fridge. “Make your own.”
Cid snorted. “So much for a home-cooked meal,” he commented, nearly biting through his toothpick before he snuck up to Vincent’s side, watching the winged male work. “Whatcha bakin’?”
Before Vincent could even open his mouth, Axel wriggled his way between them, using his hips to shove Cid out of the way. “My muffins,” he informed the older blond, sticking out his tongue when Cid spluttered.
At the table, Roxas sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. “Moron,” he muttered under his breath. Leon seemed to share the same sentiment.
The sound of a door slamming open interrupted the little festivities. Laughter echoed down the hall, followed by the noise of feet running across the floor. Axel quirked a brow, glancing towards the doorway. Seconds later, Riku and Sora appeared, wrestling each other playfully. Ocean blue eyes lit up when he smelled what was in the oven and Sora neatly elbowed Riku out of the way.
“Muffins!” the brunet exclaimed with glee, moving to investigate.
Behind him, Axel and Riku exchanged glares of hostility across the room, lightning flashing between them.
Aeris rolled her eyes. “Honestly, you two. Can’t you at least try being friends?”
The fire starter grinned widely, displaying not-quite innocent fangs. Riku scowled, though it was promptly wiped from his face when Sora bounced in his direction, holding a much-coveted muffin. One hand held yet another which he graciously gave to Roxas.
“You should try this,” Sora urged around a mouthful of muffin, bits of it already crumbling around his lips. “Vin’s are the best!”
Axel’s mouth dropped open as he whirled on his best friend in shock. “Oy! Why didn’t I–” His words were cut off as Vincent promptly shoved one in his mouth, wings twitching in obvious annoyance.
“Here,” Vincent muttered, ignoring the look Axel was tossing his direction.
Cid laughed. “More than one way ta shut him up it seems.”
“Hey, wanna spar later?” Sora asked, plopping down in a seat next to his former other half and ignoring the chaos around them. Axel heard the query from across the room, instantly reminded of the decision they had made the night before.
Emerald eyes met Roxas’ in a silent message and the blond nodded once in understanding. “I… can’t,” he replied, sounding a little disappointed.
Sora shrugged. “You’re still tired, huh? That’s okay. We can spar tomorrow. I don’t’ have to leave for a couple of days.” He grinned, taking another bite of the muffin. “We’re on vacation.”
A silence descended on the room as Roxas took a breath. “Sora, I can’t because I’m not going to be here,” he said, clarifying his earlier statement.
Sora blinked and Leon’s head swiveled in their direction. “Where are you going?” he asked in the same moment as Cid, their voices echoing in near stereo.
The two former Nobodies again exchanged glances and Axel popped the last of his pastry into his mouth. “Got a promise to keep,” he answered, gathering everyone’s attention away from Roxas. “I have to find someone.”
“And how are you going to do that?” Leon demanded.
Axel grinned and turned to look hopefully at Cid. The gummi ship builder’s eyes immediately widened. “Ah, no! Hell, no!” he swore, shaking his head and jabbing a finger in the redhead’s general direction. “You already left one of my gummies behind. I ain’t givin’ ya another.”
“But Cid,” Axel started to say, attempting his best pleading expression. He was fully prepared to beg, Axel-style of course. Meaning, he would wheedle until Cid finally gave in… or punched him. “It’s not like we can just teleport there or something.”
The older blond remained unmoved, narrowing his eyes and crossing his arms firmly over his chest. He was trying his best to stand his ground. The atmosphere within the room grew a little uncomfortable. Roxas fidgeted in his chair, not knowing that this type of behavior between the two men was quite typical.
“Man!” Yuffie’s cheerful voice pierced the silence as she promptly crawled in through an open window and propelled herself into the room. “I’m hungry!”
“Yuffie!” Leon protested loudly. “That’s my window!”
Brown eyes flickered briefly to him before she completely dismissed his statement and plopped down into an empty seat. “What’s for lunch?” she asked, seemingly oblivious to the strange silence that had permeated the room.
Leon sighed, rubbing a finger over his brow. “Definitely moving,” he muttered under his breath before answering her in a much louder voice. “Sandwiches.”
The young ninja visibly pouted. “Ah, Aeris…. you can’t do that!” she protested. “We have to throw a party for Roxas’ return. We can’t eat sandwiches at a party.”
“Except, ya know, for the fact that they’re leaving,” Riku mumbled quietly, though he meant it to be more sarcastic than it sounded. Axel shot him a glare which was firmly ignored. Someday, he promised himself, he would beat the shit out of that little brat and feel greatly relieved to do so.
Yuffie’s big eyes turned towards the former Nobodies. “What? You’re leaving?” She pouted. “Where are you going?”
“Twilight Town,” Roxas answered softly. “And then–”
Axel chuckled and rubbed the back of his head, disturbing still shower-dampened spikes. “We don’t really know,” he finished. “We’re not exactly sure where we’re supposed to look.” He scowled then, shooting a pointed glance in a certain accessory shop owner’s direction. “And someone’s being stingy with his gummi ships.”
Cid threw his hands up into the air in a gesture of defeat. “Ya fuckin’ left one behind!”
“I said I’d pay for it!”
“When did ya say that, brat?”
“I thought it was implied!”
“Ya still ain’t paid for that damned statue ya broke!”
“That was an accident!”
A sharp whistle broke through their argument, making Cid cut off mid-yell. All eyes turned towards a beaming Aeris, a strained look of peace in her eyes. “I think that’s quite enough, don’t you?” she said, smiling as sweetly as she could. The pink-clad woman set a tray full of muffins down in the middle of the table. “Surely we can talk about this in a civilized manner. Cid? Axel?”
The two men, immediately chastened, grumbled under their breaths, crossing their arms over their chests and churlishly disregarding one another.
Sora laughed at their response. “You’re acting like kids,” he giggled, a wide grin stretching his face as he reached for another one of the blueberry creations. They were addictive. “I thought that was our job.”
Instantly, as if his words were a river of calm, tension dissolved. Even Leon managed a grin. Riku reached over and ruffled Sora’s affectionately. His other hand finally deigned to try one of the muffins, ignoring Axel’s glare of possession as he did so. In fact, he stuck his tongue out at the other before promptly taking a big, overly dramatic bite.
“If it’s any consolation,” Roxas offered. “I’ll be the one to pilot it.” Axel sniffed but didn’t say anything since they had already had that conversation before. Honestly, did they think he would purposely steer into a meteor or something?
Sky blue eyes regarded him searchingly. “Do ya even know how?”
Roxas shrugged. “Can’t be that hard. Sora does it.”
The brunet was indignant. “Hey!”
Riku laughed. “He’s got a point, Sora.”
On the other side of the Dawn key blader, Yuffie sat back in her chair with a disappointed look on her face. “No party?” she grumbled. “This sucks.” Her foot struck out, kicking at the legs of Riku’s chair.
Axel grinned and clamped his hand down on her head, purposefully messing up her hair. “When we get back, okay?” he suggested. She scowled in return, however, and swiped at him, but he nimbly danced out of the way. He was well-skilled in the art of strike-dodging.
“Yeah!” Sora agreed enthusiastically. “I can bring Kairi then, too. It’ll be like a keyblade reunion or something.” Blue eyes sparkled earnestly.
“So you are returning then?” Leon asked.
Axel nodded and shot the man a leering grin, a chance for teasing the stormy-eyed brunet arising. “Don’t worry, Squeon. If we find Cloud, we’ll be sure to tell him to come home since his wife is worried about him. Gotta think of the kiddies after all.” He winked, remembering how he had called the man worse than a pregnant woman. Yuffie burst out into laughter at the reminder of that conversation.
Leon, predictably, glared, all the while looking as if he were trying to fight back a blush, which made the glare look more like an annoyed pout.
Roxas rolled his eyes. “Sometimes I wonder why I’m friends with you,” he pointed out.
“That’s cause you love me!” Axel declared, promptly throwing his arms around his lover and nearly squeezing him to death. Deft movements avoided the annoyed swatting of Roxas’ hands.
“Gah,” Roxas grunted, elbowing the fire starter in the side. “Get off me, fire freak.” There was affection in his voice, however, belying his demand.
“Such love,” Riku remarked dryly, smirking.
Pinching the bridge of his nose, Leon’s sigh permeated the chaos. “I need an aspirin,” he muttered, in that moment wishing he weren’t the only one with any sense in the whole bunch. He raised his eyes to Cid. “Please give them a gummi ship. Think of the peace and quiet, Cid.”
The blond chewed on his lip, trying his best to ignore the look that Vincent was sending his direction. Axel heard Leon’s request and stopped molesting Roxas long enough to look up pleadingly.
“Come on, Cid. I promise to pay you back sometime.”
The blond ignored him and looked at Roxas. “Ya sure ya want to be stuck in a small space with that brat?” he asked, jerking a thumb towards the fire starter. Axel tried to look indignant as Roxas sighed.
“I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’m stuck with him,” he responded with a half-grin.
The offense wiped away as Axel grinned, looking down at the blond that he had fallen in love somewhere along the way, despite not having a heart.
“That’s right,” he said with a grin, ignoring the looks of everyone around them. “You’re not getting rid of me anytime soon.” He grasped Roxas’ chin with his fingers, rubbing a thumb over the other male’s cheek.
Cid opened his mouth to say something obnoxious but a firm elbow in his side stopped that.
Roxas sighed. “Can’t you take a hint?” he asked softly, eyes gleaming. “Kiss me, damn it.”
“So bossy,” Axel murmured before leaning down and locking lips with the younger male. Their mouths moved slowly. It was nothing special, not even any tongue, but Axel wouldn’t have had it any other way.
He broke away from it, sharing a small smile with his boyfriend. Roxas’ cheeks were tinted pink but even he seemed pleased. Axel was overcome by the urge to kiss him all over again, something alluring about the simple, chaste affection.
Until Yuffie suddenly popped up next to them. “Geeze, you guys forget we were here?” she asked, grinning like a fool.
Roxas flushed deeper while Axel growled playfully. “Why you little!”
He raised his hands as if to strangle her, seriously tempted to do so. Imagine, ruining a moment like that! She laughed and darted out of his range. His face twisting into a mock-scowl, Axel chased after her.
“Come here and let me strangle you!”
“Nyah!” she responded, sticking out her tongue at him. He growled, tripping over a chair, before promptly vaulting over it and continuing the pursuit.
Leon watched them and picked up a muffin, tossing it in his hand before biting into it and tossing Roxas another. “Welcome to the family,” he muttered, looking vaguely pained.
Roxas caught it and smirked. “I think I fit right in.”
“You do!” Sora declared, throwing an arm over Roxas’ shoulder, giving him a big thumbs up.
In the background there was a crash as Axel tripped over a foot that Vincent not so secretly stuck out and stumbled into Yuffie, the both of them crashing into a cabinet of dishes. Ceramic and porcelain fell to the floor, shattering on impact as the wood cracked and creaked. Roxas groaned and covered his face with one hand, a part of him wishing that his boyfriend were just a tad more graceful.
“Don’t worry, I’ll pay for that!”