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­Title: The Nobody Virus
Author: hajikurazaki19 and DeadShut
Rating: One for the terrible-and-we-mean-Terrible writing, one for the horribly boring characters, one for the sexism (OMIGAWD THE SEXISM), one for the needless and graphic violence, and one just to let you know that this entire fic is devoid of any entertainment value whatsoever. You have been warned.
Full Name (including any titles): Ryan “Roxas” Hall, Sora O’Reily. (There's a million more, but they're not worth remembering.)
Full Species(es): Scum of the earth.
Hair Color (include adjectives): The quick summary for this part is to say that sometimes hair is same as canon, sometimes it’s something entirely different. There is never any good reason for either.
Eye Color (include adjectives): The most memorable colour is green. Why is it memorable? You’ll see.
Unusual Markings/Colorations/Physical Features: *shrugs*
Special Possessions (if any): Sora has a fancy stick masquerading as the Keyblade in one pocket and seemingly an Idiot Ball in the other, because incompetence like his has to be in tangible form. The story itself also has a weird love/hate relationship with Italy.

Origin: Frank Miller’s Guide to Fanfiction (with a foreword by Alan Moore)
Connections To Canon Characters: Stole their names. And then killed them to hide the evidence.
Special Abilities: Hallucinating others into believing anyone's had character development or changed in any way whatsoever.
Other Annoying Traits: Let’s save you some time and compress the answer down to “Everything not mentioned above.”

I Say/Notes: Well, that took a while. On the bright side, this is personally one of our favourite sections of the whole spork.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five
Part Six
Part Seven
Part Eight
Part Nine
Part Ten


Mog: Now things are getting fun, cuz we have one chapter that’s split into two parts!
Axel: So it’s just two chapters that try to look cooler by being smashed together so we can enjoy even more pretentious bullhonkey.
Mog: If you want to look at it the not new and exciting way, sure Mr. Partypooper.
Terra: I'm awake again, by the way.

20: Luxord

Part I: Aroma of Roses

"Mike," whispered Joe eagerly.

Xion: He’s not too different from you or me.

"Are you free yet?"

"No, not yet."

Roxas: (as Mike) But I’ll get off the Satellite of Love eventually, just you wait.
Mog: *from notes* Being held captive for several days isn't good for your health.

And once he got out of here, he was going to kill that freaky asshole.

Terra: With what? He has a scythe and has been getting nourishment and exercise. Nice determination, but I think he can still take you.

Brandon lay on the floor in front of them, lifeless, his asshole torn to sickening proportions by the Pink-Hair's scythe. What a dumbass he had been, at least in Mike's eyes.

Roxas: (as Mike) What a dumb moron, getting killed! LOSER!

He had gotten free…so he was going to stop and fuck his captor, a dangerous murderer, without any thought whatsoever as to freeing his friends? That dick deserved what he got.

Axel: Why do you people even have names? You might as well be ‘A-Hole who died already’, ‘Dick friend who will most likely die in a few minutes’ and ‘Other dude I don’t care about cause he’ll die eventually’.

"Come…on!" Mike growled, and with another hard yank, his hand was released from the rope it had been bound to and he was falling backwards onto his rear. As he got up, muttering, Joe cheered.

Terra: (as Joe) Go, Mike, you can do it! Rah rah, siskoombah! Mike! Mike! He’s our man! If he can’t do it, no one can!
Zexion: (as Mike) I really wish you’d shut up before you spoke, Joe.

Joe hadn't been looking so good, Mike noticed.

Xion: He needed a haircut and a shave. And possibly some dental floss.

Ever since the pink-haired demon fed him those apple seeds (which were fucking poisonous…who knew?),

Roxas: At least it makes sense, unlike the human flowerpots idea that got abandoned immediately after it was introduced.
Xion: Come on, if you’re going to have a story with aliens and cyborgs, at least keep the wackiness consistent.

Mike's friend had gotten very pale. Dark circles clouded his eyes,

Larxene: Hey, remember that opening when you went on and on about pale, dark-eyed people? You gonna care about that ever again or was it really just inane rambling?

and his body was glazed in sweat. He was a wreck.

Roxas: And later that night when his lights went out of sight, came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Mike searched the freak's dresser,

Terra: (as Mike) Geez, where are the blue jumpsuits when you need them?

until he found a very long knife that only a freak like Pink-Hair would own.

Zexion: Or a professional chef or butcher.

He cut Joe's bonds, and the man fell onto the floor, sobbing in relief. Mike helped him up.

"We're not out of this yet, asshole. C'mon."

To Mike's surprise, Joe pushed him. Pushed him!

Xion: That big meanyhead!
Roxas: If you don’t want to be shoved around, stop insulting people. It’s a pretty easy rule to remember.

And pretty hard, too; Mike stumbled backwards into the freak's dresser.

"What the fuck?" asked Mike furiously.

"You sonofabitch!" yelled Joe. "Why didn't you just apologize? He would have let us go!"

Xion: (as Joe) I know all the scenes he’s appeared in serve the one and only purpose of saying he’s super-duper scary, but have some manners!

"Stop yelling," hissed Mike menacingly. "And I didn't apologize because I ain't no pussy. I could take him."

Axel: Save the dick measuring contests for after you’re free!

"He gave me poison," said Joe. There was a murderous shine in his eyes that Mike had never seen before.

Lexaeus: The cyanide is inverting in his system.

"He gave nothing to you. He tortured me an' Brandon to get to you.

Zexion: It’s like the plot to Whisked Away but even more boring and plodding.
Marluxia: And somehow with even dumber characters.

And you just watched us take it."

Terra: (as Mike) Oh, SORRY that I had my arms tied. CLEARLY this is all MY fault.

Mike stared at his friend, lips pursed. How could Joe blame him? What was he…a little girl?

Xion: Cuz sexism.

So he had to eat apple seeds and he got a little sick, big whoop.

Marluxia: This is basically like someone in the story heard that apple seeds were poisonous and went "That'd make a neat scene" and then didn't bother researching that the apple seeds contain cyanogenic acids, or anything about how cyanide poisoning works, or the fact that cassava root would be more efficient to poison someone with than the few dozen apples you'd have to eat to even have the right amount of poison, but maybe that was all too much effort.

"Wow," said Mike, disdain lining his voice. "I had no idea you could be such a faggot, Joe."

Zexion: Am I really supposed to care about a bar-room brawl between two bigoted jerks? Why was this scene ever conceived?

For five seconds, Joe stared at him. Five seconds.

Roxas: Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Tick—

Then he pounced.

Roxas: —Smack.

Literally, the man flew across the room

Xion: Joe’s pouncing made him sprout wings!
Mog: *from notes* So they basically do a Three Stooges skit but without the third stooge.

He backed away and looked down to see the black hilt of the freak's knife sticking from his stomach.

Axel: See what I mean? Why bother having a name. You are and will forever remain an extra.

Sticky blood stained his shirt and drenched him. He felt blood rise from his throat and swish around in his mouth as he gaped at Joe.

Terra: This makes the blood sound like a morbid Listerine.

Eyes bloodshot, skin white, teeth bared, Joe didn't look like a human being anymore, but an animal. He moved forward and wrenched the knife out of his friend's stomach.

Xion: (as Joe) Remember when I said I'd take you on as an overnight cook? I lied.

The pain was unbearable, and the last thing Mike thought of before falling forward and passing away was how he had never seen it coming…never…

Axel: I did. Do I get a prize?

Joe, the sole survivor,

Marluxia: In case you forgot the events of all one millisecond ago, reader, here’s a friendly reminder.

pocketed the knife, stepped over his fallen friends, and left the room. He walked out into what seemed to be a hotel's hallway, for rooms lined both walls.

Zexion: Why does everyone always assume the Organization’s HQ is a hotel? They could be in an apartment complex, in an office, in any building that's designed to hold multiple people. Hotels don’t hold some copyright power over halls with doors.

Up ahead was an elevator, and he rushed towards it silently, making sure to keep the knife ready at his side. He opened the elevator with the push of a button, and inside he found the floor "Lounge".

Must mean Lobby, he figured,

Lexaeus: Or it might mean ‘Lounge’.
Mog: *from notes* Down we go!

The elevator opened with a ding! and he stepped out to find himself in a room of entirely white.

Zexion: I thought it said ‘Lounge’, not ‘Purgatory’.

A small den was in the center, and on a black couch in front of a large TV set was a teenaged boy of around eighteen wearing black and white clothes sitting and playing videogames.

Marluxia: So any eighteen-year-old out there right now.
Terra: It makes a strange amount of sense that this awful fic based on a video game can’t even spell “video games” correctly.

His blonde hair was gelled into a messy hairdo, and his blue eyes turned from the screen to Joe, and widened.

Xion: (as Roxas) *ecstatic* Another person! Here, take the second controller, you can help me survive Land of the Livid Dead. I’ve been on this fire section for HOURS!

"Who the fuck are you?" the kid demanded, standing up.

Roxas: (as self) And when the heck did I change into my Twilight Town clothes?

Joe spoke, his voice raspy from sickness, "Who the fuck am I?

Axel: (as Joe) I’m just another face in a red jumpsuit!

Who the fuck are you?

Roxas: Not Roxas, I can say that much.

Where is this? I'll kill all of you motherfuckers!

Zexion: (as Roxas) There’s thirteen of us and one of you.
Terra: (as Joe) Crud.

That pink-haired shithead won't get me! Nuh-uh! No!" He brandished the knife and charged forward.

Roxas: (as Joe) Rum and vinegar!

His mind went into a haze just then, at the worst time it possibly could, and Joe stumbled forward. He felt himself fall upon the blade already warm with Mike's blood, felt it sink into him and pierce his innards. He lay on the floor, blood pooling on top of the white.

Xion: Bwu-bwu-bwu-bwu byuuu!
Zexion: I don’t think that was supposed to be comedic, but it has that sort of pratfall sense that makes it so.

The boy was on top of him a moment later.

Larxene: (as Roxas) *boing boing boing* This is the best free trampoline I’ve ever had!

"Why are you here?" he demanded.

Terra: (as Joe) I honestly have no idea! I serve no purpose sequentially or thematically!

Joe spoke loudly, trying to sound intimidating: "To kill you all!" His vision was starting to darken.

Panic emphasized the boy's voice, "Who sent you? Who sent you?"

That pink-haired bastard is gonna die for this, was what Joe wanted to say next, quickly, before he was gone for good, but he only managed to get the first four words out before Death embraced him.

Lexaeus: (as Death) Good to see you again, old friend. Let’s return to our game of chess. Hopefully the tide hasn’t washed it away.

"That pink-haired bastard…" said the stranger who had clumsily ended his own life.

Roxas: So after all that... no death by poisonous seeds.
Axel: What kind of cheap-ass cyanide you using, Mother Nature? The one thing it's good at is killing quickly and it managed to fail at that one job.
Marluxia: This entire scene is a failure.

Roxas felt his blood run cold as he stepped away from the body. He desperately needed to tell someone this news. Marluxia?

Xion: (as Roxas) Hey, Marly, who was that weird guy?
Axel: (as Marluxia) No one, don’t worry about it.
Xion: (as Roxas) Okay. *goes back to playing games*

Marluxia, the serial killer who seemed so loyal to the Superior,

Terra: Isn’t everyone loyal to your superior, though? Why is that the particular thing you single out?

Marluxia, who acted like a murderous puppy dog

Terra: You know, if Ryan’s seen some messed up dogs in his past, that would explain so much about him.

…a traitor? He had sent this man to the Labs to, as the stranger had said, "kill them all"?

Zexion: This is basically following the same beat as a Third Act Misunderstanding and will no doubt lead to even more scenes we’ll say are pointless, but at least it sort of makes sense for Ryan to come to this conclusion.
Marluxia: Better than anything Sora’s jumped to thus far.

"Jesus," whispered Roxas. "Jesus Christ…"

Roxas: …was born on Christmas day.

He wished someone was here.

Larxene: Like that girlfriend you apparently love. But why would we want to see you two interact? None of the other couples have so far.

Everyone else had things to do today,

Axel: For once.

and he was left all alone, here, by himself.

Terra: He was alone, in this room, in a very alone kind of way, lonely-ish.

Even Saix had business to attend to, and encouraged Roxas to take a day off from his chaotic uprising.

Roxas: (as Saix) Congratulations on doing one task successfully, Roxas. Take the rest of the week off!
Larxene: Who knew terrorism had the world’s best vacation pay?

Axel was gone, too, wouldn't be back for a couple days, so there was no one.

No one.

Marluxia: How... I don’t know, just [bleep]. How is no one nearby? Or how about he calls someone on those two cell phones he has?
Zexion: I'll count my blessings they aren’t using “nobody” to describe themselves anymore.

Marluxia would be coming back tomorrow morning. Roxas would have to confront him. But first…

Terra: He could realize he could ask other people to investigate this for him, or not confront Marluxia, or maybe ask other people to team up with him to check this out? Or not go alone and die like an idiot?

Roxas took the elevator up, leaving the body behind.

Marluxia: The maid will get that for him.

He went up to the Organization's hallway of rooms, and entered Marluxia's. Inside he found a bloodbath. Two bodies, one huge pool of blood. One guy's entire lower half had been torn into. The other man had been stabbed.

This was odd.

Roxas: I’ll say. They took forever to become relevant and now I’m supposed to care.
Xion: Odd stands for ‘Only Died for Drama’.

Both looked like wounds frequently made with Marluxia's scythe…but that guy downstairs had his knife covered in blood. The bigger man's stabbing could have been done using such a weapon. Which would be strange.

Zexion: Why do you care exactly how they died when it’s clear Marluxia is still responsible in some way?
Axel: I thought Roxas was supposed to be the Org’s virologist, why is he so gung-ho about crime investigation?

Why would Marluxia bring these three in here?

Marluxia: To waste our time.
Roxas: Rather abstractly too. Geez, how long have they been around, eighteen chapters or something? I’m amazed they didn’t just pass away off screen.

Maybe they were just victims. After all, what assassin calls their employer "bastard" like the stranger had?

Lexaeus: There’s so much cursing in this world of yours maybe he took it to be an ironic endearment.

But, then again, why would he say he was in the Labs to kill all of the Organization? No…Roxas needed to tell Saix about this, or confront Marluxia.

Axel: ...Or tell Saix about this. It’s the idea less filled with stupid.

Unfortunately, the latter would come first; Saix wasn't due to be back until tomorrow afternoon. Marluxia: tomorrow morning.

Terra: So busy yourself somewhere else for the hours until Saix comes back, call it “work”, and then talk to him. There, problem solved.
Axel: Oh ho, you and your pesky common sense!

He sighed and sat down on the couch, feeling sick.

Axel: (as Roxas) Poor Dude Who Will Die Eventually. He meant so much to me.
Xion: (as Roxas, hammy crying) He did a good job cleaning up the place. His bosses didn’t like him, but they didn’t even get the chance to shoot him into space.

The stress of these risks were taking a toll on him.

Roxas: Yeah, this gets to you, but the killing of innocent people— including DEFENSELESS CHILDREN, need I remind you!— gets no reaction whatsoever.
Lexaeus: No matter how many times we express it, no one will ever understand how much we despise this character.

The large van drove down the highway speedily, passing the New Jersey town of Saddle Brooke with haste.

Xion: Now I’m in the mood to reread the Saddle Club books.

It pulled into a Burger King,

Axel: And another spot I’ll never visit again thanks to this fic.

and Don, dressed as an everyday average guy, went inside to get the rest of the group some food. Goofy walked outside as well, to smoke a cigarette real quick.

Roxas: Now you’re just being a terrible influence to Max.

Kairi had to use the bathroom, so she went inside with Don.

Zexion: And Instance #326 where the story shoves Kairi aside because why should we have any interest about her?
Xion: If you’re going to constantly write her out of the story, why bother writing her in to begin with?

Riku was still out cold.

Terra: Maybe when he wakes up, he’ll be a good friend.

And so Sora was alone with Demyx.

Larxene: (as Sora) Uhhh... you see the game last night?
Marluxia: (as Demyx) No. You kidnapped me and left me in a warehouse to rot.
Larxene: (as Sora) Look, if you’re not going to make polite small talk, I won’t even bother. *sulks*

He went to him, taking off the mask.

Xion: Zoinks, let’s see who this guy really is!
Roxas: Jinkies!

Demyx's eyes were red from either the lack of light or from the pain he was in or from crying. None of these options stirred Sora's sympathies.

Larxene: You’re not a developed enough character for sympathies, kid.

"What do you want, kid?" croaked Demyx. "I told you where Luxord is. What more could you possibly do to kill me?"

"Kill you?" repeated Sora. "Kill you? Because of you, my parents are dead."

Axel: Damn, already used the Batman joke.
Roxas: It would be much more awesome if Lily grew up to be Batman. Sora can be that bystander that’s somewhere in a side panel.

Demyx said nothing.

Terra: He did, however, shrug as if to say “Yeah, can’t deny that.”

Sora continued, "You know, I was always a fan of your music. The dedication to nature, the emotion you put into it…

Roxas: (as Sora) No one else liked the track “I’m Going to Kill Everyone For Shallow Reasons” off your album “Biological Warfare” but I did. I just never saw this coming!

I always found you to be very talented. Hell, you even inspired me.

Marluxia: To do what? To sing? To perform? To have any hobby whatsoever? We still know nothing about you. It’s hard to relate to you on a human level when the story treats you as nothing more than a blank slate.

And you killed my parents."

Axel: (as Demyx) Kid, all I’ve done in this entire story is strum guitar! If you want to complain to someone that matters, leave a message in our complaints box and we might get back to you.

"Hey, c'mon," said Demyx. "I didn't kill your parents. I just handed them over to the guys who did."

"You're a part of them. Don't try and get out of this."

"Cut me some slack, man."

"Why? So you can hang me with it?"

Zexion: (as Demyx) No, so I can have some pants. Did I inspire you to become a tailor, by chance?

"I did what I had to," the musician said stubbornly.

Axel: (as Demyx) I complained how people liked me, killed a man, then continued in my music career where people liked me except now I’m upset that they don’t like me enough. I did what I had to do.

"You think you can just resign from Organization XIII? Bull fucking shit, bro. They can be friendly, yeah,

Nobodies: HA!

but you do what they say or they'll kill you with no hesitation."

Roxas: (as Demyx) Killing people for my own gain is fine if I can still sing. But them tearing my vocal chords out through my ears is just unfair!

"Consider yourself lucky we've brought you out of the city, then."

Demyx barked laughter.

Terra: Fun fact: Did you know Chris Sanders did the voice of Stitch and Little Brother from Mulan?
Lexaeus: That’s not related to that sentence at all.
Terra: I saw “barked” and wanted to say it.

"You think they're some little gang grounded in New York, afraid of the authorities like the Heartless are and whatnot?

Xion: ...Actually, the Heartless don’t seem afraid of the authorities at all. They’ve made themselves known several times throughout the story and recently televised their bombing of a national landmark. So, yeah, Demyx doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
Roxas: He’s still just jealous they’ve done more than he has.

I told you, they're the worst motherfuckers in the world, and you pissed them off with your little Keyblade-fights."

Marluxia: They saw it and kept thinking you could have made it even mildly entertaining.
Zexion: Or that you could have actively fought Roxas, like to face your guilt of the club incident and use the Keyblade for good instead. That would have made you more like a hero and not just a dumb teen who stumbles around and occasionally falls onto the plot.

"Ah," said Sora, not daring to show emotion.

Lexaeus: He’s been doing a perfect job of that the past week.

"So that guy in the mask was a part of you guys, too, huh?"

Zexion: Miracle of miracles, “a part” is finally spelled correctly. If I had a heart, it would have exploded out of pure shock.

"Maybe. Maybe not."

"You've just admitted it either way, so whatever.

Roxas: Sora’s finally showing a sliver of competence.
Axel: (as Sora) *valleygirl* Whateverrrrr.

What happened to my parents?"

Marluxia: We’re not entirely sure since they only had that one scene.
Roxas: That Mog skipped over most of, anyway. A guy explodes and we skip that for being boring. That’s what this fic does!

"I told you they were killed."

"I know. But how?"

Larxene: (as Sora) I want all the gory details! Describe the buckets of viscera for me!

"Experiments," said Demyx. "Were performed on them. They passed away during this process."

"For the virus?"

"Fuck you."

Terra: Times infinity plus nine.

"Want me to get Goofy back in here?"

Xion: (as Sora) We’ll get him to sing “On the Open Road” again! Don’t think we won’t!

Demyx sighed, "Yes, for the virus."

Sora looked outside the van. "Goofy's coming back."

Terra: (as Goofy) Ahyuck! Miss me? I’ve been gone for a while! Where’s that other guy that was around before?

He put the mask back over the musician's face as Goofy got into the van, hanging up his cell phone.

"I told Mick everything," he said. "He's arranged a flight for Las Vegas. There's more, but hang on." He walked back to Demyx and crowned him on the head with the butt of his gun. Demyx fell face-first, unconscious, and Sora cried in outrage.

Roxas: (as Sora) Goofy would never do that! Why have you stolen his name?!

"Relax. It's just so he can't hear this next part. Mick wants us to find this Luxord-guy, and capture him, too.

Zexion: I’m sure Demyx assumed you’d do that anyway, so why couldn’t he hear it?

Then we're bringing both of them back to Mick's penthouse

Xion: Why couldn’t Sora and friends go to Mick’s house instead of hanging out with Jerkbutt?

in New York to learn anything we can while Mick's staying there for some business meeting. He will also personally interrogate both of them.

Roxas: (as Mick) *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you?*poke* Does this bug you? *poke* Does this bug you?
Xion: (as Demyx) Okay, I’ll talk! Stop mildly annoying me!

This all must be done within forty-eight hours."

Terra: ...Uh, why?
Larxene: So the fic can shut up and END! I don’t care why!

"Jeez…But do we still have a warrant out for our arrest?" asked Sora. "We kidnapped Demyx, for Chrissake."

Xion: Why hasn’t Amber tried to get you arrested? I mean, think about it. All she has to do is say you threatened her in order to steal important documents— and, because of the burns from the Keyblade, she has injuries to support this lie— leave out the “sex with a minor” thing, and there seems to be a solid case against you.
Lexaeus: That scene has no relevance to the plot, stop trying to add conflict and rising action.

"Mick's covered it up as a drive-by, and a replacement-Demyx is 'injured' in the hospital."

Zexion: Or he could have tripped over the equipment or gotten mild food poisoning or developed a throat infection. There’s a thousand different, non-violent ways he could have ended up in the hospital. Ways that wouldn't fall apart during the slightest investigation.
Terra: Not to mention, he was already in the building. He was about to go on stage when they captured him. So now every person that was working at the concert hall that night is wondering when they missed the Blues Brothers moment of a car racing down the halls.

"Okay…But what about this 'Luxord'? Anything on him?"

Roxas: Well, people keep mentioning him despite the fact he’s done absolutely nothing so far. That help?

"Demyx said his real name was Jackson Picard.

Zexion: And good luck trying not to read “Jean-Luc Picard” as you’re skimming down to our comments and see that.

Mick searched him. Born in Ireland, immigrated to Mexico when he was fifteen with Chris

Axel: Another one!
Roxas: Seriously! I know it’s a common name, but throw in a Matthew or a Bob or a something every once in a while.

and Margaret Picard. Both of his parents were stabbed to death seven years after, and Jackson was a suspect.

Marluxia: Why? Did he have mental problems, a relationship horrible enough that seemed like a motive, tried to make it look like an accident to collect insurance, what?

Eventually he was proven innocent,

Lexaeus: Because of a complete lack of evidence and motivation.

although there are no records providing the evidence.

Terra: He was let go by twelve angry men.

A year later, he moved to America, and has lived here for eight years. That's all on him."

Axel: And another boring person joins the Organization with no problems whatsoever but wants to screw the world over anyway. The blandest of all villain groups keeps marching forward.

"Hm. Are you noticing a pattern here, Goof'?"

Roxas: (as Goofy) Yeah, like how people don’t like adding another syllable onto my nickname anymore for some reason.
Zexion: I haven't played Grammar Police in some time so... Improper use of an apostrophe. That'll be a $500 fine, Goof.

"You bet your ass.

Xion: You bet your asteroids!

Demyx, Marluxia, Luxord…all nicknames, all with 'X''s in them.

Axel: (as Don) I honestly feel like an idiot for not connecting the neon bright dots until now.

A history of killing people, and each with a deep passion for certain things. Demyx: music and water, it seems.

Terra: But... but lots of people are passionate about things, and water and music are common favourites. Why’s it important that he cares about them?

Marluxia: killing and gardening. Luxord seems to be in charge of this group's finance, and he's gambling in Vegas, so I can assume he likes money."

"Or just gambling," added Sora.

Xion: What about clocks? Or Tarot card reading? Luxord being interested in Tarot card reading makes a lot of sense, it reflects both the cards and his element of time. I’m honestly just rambling on this so I won’t have to read any more.

Goofy nodded.

The other two came back, and they all ate in silence as they drove.

Marluxia: Because why bother having them learn about each other, and letting the audience in on that.
Xion: Kairi successfully went through another whole scene without speaking or doing anything of worth. Good job, girl!
Mog: *from notes* Newark is pretty but full of rapscallions.

"Huh?" mumbled Riku as he sat up in the van, looking bewildered. Sora looked into his friend's eyes and saw that dazed feeling.

Lexaeus: It is impossible to see a physical sensation. That’s like saying Sora can see itches.

"Where are we? Sora? Kairi?"

Axel: (as Riku) Don? Goofy? Demyx? Mom? Great uncle Danny? Chief? McCloud?

"Oh, thank God," said Kairi, embracing him.

Terra: (as Kairi) I know the last time you saw me you were attacking my boyfriend and I had to dent your head BUT WHY CARE ABOUT THAT NOW! THE MEN ARE HERE!

Sora smiled and punched his friend's shoulder.

Roxas: (as Sora) That’s for abandoning us in a night club run by a gang lord and no I’m never letting that go.

"What the flying fuck happened to me?" Riku asked. "I can't remember a thing…"

Larxene: I could make an acrostic poem with the word ASSHAT if that would help jog your memory.

Sora and Kairi quickly explained all that had happened, and Riku sat there dumbfounded.

Xion: (as Riku) Seriously guys, what’s the real story?
Roxas: (as Sora) We’re telling you the truth, the plot really is just that out of control.
Axel: (as Kairi) I like hair clips.

Don said, "It's great you're back and all, Riku, but we have a mission.

Marluxia: (as Don) So we’ll just ignore how you’re losing your mind and could possibly endanger us and yourself. Deal with that on your own time.

We're going to Vegas to get Demyx's partner-in-crime. Demyx is right next to you, by the way.

Roxas: (as Don) Just thought you’d like to know that. Didn’t want it to be awkward or anything, being next to a tied and tortured musician who I’m still not sure is famous or not.

Looks like he's just waking up, too. C'mon, all, get your asses in gear!

Terra: (as Don) Get those donkeys saddled up now! Move it, move it!

We have forty-eight hours to do this, so let's do it quickly!"

Riku bit his lip, "N-no. I can't, you guys."

Sora and Kairi looked at each other, then at their friend.

Lexaeus: They keep using the word ‘friend.’ I’m not sure these two are aware of what that means.

Riku stammered, "I c-can't risk going haywire again and hurting you.

Roxas: Intelligence! It DOES still exist!

Plus, I…" he sighed. "I have to talk to someone. I…don't know where she is, but I left her when she needed me most and now I have to go back.

Terra: I doubt this story is going there, but talking to Aqua may not be such a bad idea. She seems to have way too much information on the Keyblades despite believing they don’t exist, so maybe she could figure out what’s causing these hallucinations.
Zexion: And if the audience knows what's going on, they might have the ability to follow any of this.

I'm sorry. This is something I have to do, before I go nuts again."

Sora nodded; this time, he understood what his friend meant.

Marluxia: As opposed to the last time he pleaded to meet with someone and you looked at him with a stupefied expression on your face. Because I'm sure we all remember that little moment that never happened.

He looked at Kairi, and saw she did, too.

Xion: (as Kairi) Riku going off on his own always leads to worse things happening, why bother stopping him now?

The three of them got out of the van, and parted ways once again. Riku called a bus station as he walked away, and Kairi watched him go through tears. Sora put and awkward, yet comforting arm around her.

Roxas: Sure, Sora's girlfriend could have expressed thoughts but we have to see how demure and dainty she is. Just like all desirable women, of course!

They changed into everyday clothes

Marluxia: Where, in the middle of the street?
Zexion: There’s this mystical technique in writing that we like to call “establishing”. Give it a try sometimes.

before walking into the airport, with Demyx in the lead. His face was bloodied and bruised, but he walked with an arrogant pride that seemed to piss off Don and Goofy. Thankfully nobody recognized him.

Roxas: However, security immediately accosted them for dragging an obviously injured and unhappy person through the airport. They missed their flight to Vegas and the story limped off with them.

He was an underrated musician, but that did not mean he wasn't known by anybody…but even his fans would not notice him with his face swelled in such proportions.

Xion: Have you seen his hair? It’s hard not to notice and think, “Man, only Demyx would have an outdated style like that.”

For twenty minutes or so, they sat around drinking coffees,

Terra: Trying to pretend they didn’t know that guy screaming about 48 hours.
Xion: (as airport security) Sir, you still have to wait for the planes to arrive.
Roxas: (as Goofy) I’m telling you we only have forty-eight hours! I don’t know why but it’s my last desperate attempt to add some tension!

when the intercom of the airport announced the departure to Vegas. They all stood to leave, but while the others walked forward, Kairi pushed Sora back down and kissed him full on the mouth.

Xion: Meanwhile, this scene is going on behind them.
Roxas: (as security) Passports, please.
Axel: (as Goofy) Uh... sure. *hands over all three passports*
Roxas: (as security) Good, good, go— Wait, Demyx? Aren’t you supposed to be in the hospital right now? And did any of you bother to get tickets or boarding passes?
Axel: (as Don) I can’t believe we didn’t plan this far.

Shocked, Sora asked, "What was that for?"

Terra: (as Kairi) To actually do something in this relationship other than be ogled by you. I have feelings too, you know.

"You looked like you needed it." She smiled at him.

He smiled back, because he did need it.

They walked to the plane, together, holding hands.

Zexion: The incredible sweeping romance almost makes me forget about the gore and rape the story would rather focus on.

Greg Coy

Roxas: Oh, for... Stop adding characters! It’s asking way too much from your audience to remember this much in one story! They have lives, okay? There are other things taking priority in their brain outside of every single character and their alias.

had a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken that he gobbled on ceaselessly as he walked upstairs to his apartment.

Terra: Is this name-dropping of things— Two and a Half Men, Dunkin’ Donuts, KFC, Burger King, Jersey Shore— supposed to be some sort of statement? Because I don’t get it, and quite frankly it doesn’t relate to the main “message” of the world being cruel.

Some stuck-up bitch walked past him on the stairwell and grimaced.

Xion: (as woman) *groan* Oh great, this incredibly sexist story is going to try to use me to make a statement about sexism without realizing its own numerous flaws. It’s like Heavy Rain all over again!

"'ey, fuck you, whore," he remarked through a mouthful of food. "I'll turn ya' into a prostitute, y'know? I know people. Get da' fuck outta here." He spanked her and she flew down the stairs, sobbing. He grinned in satisfaction. Damn, he loved being a Heartless!

Larxene: Damn, he loved being a ridiculous exaggeration of how actual sexual and street harassment worked!

He was king, no doubt about it!

Marluxia: Uh huh. So you're about to die, right? That's what this scene's only purpose is? You were slightly petty so that justifies a violent end.

He reached his floor and walked down the hall. It was quieter than usual today…how odd.

Zexion: Oh, why don’t you just have him say “It’s quiet.... Too quiet.”

Coy reached his apartment, stuck the key in the lock, and opened the door. All the lights were out inside. He had left them on. Frowning, he flicked the lightswitch. Nothing.

"Damn electric company," he swore as he waddled over to his favorite chair next to the window that looked out into Central Park.

Axel: Oh yeah, and he’s fat. Because all evil people are greedy, fat bastards.
Lexaeus: Subtle.

He looked towards the window, expecting to see a nice view of his city, but all he saw was a tall figure wearing dark clothing.

Roxas: (as Coy) Batman?!
Axel: (as figure) I am Lily Ion, defender of the night!

And he had pink hair

Xion: That apparently took up the entire window?
Roxas: (as Marluxia) Yeess, I will cut his power and then stand in front of the room's remaining light source and hope he won't immediately notice and flee. A genius plan if I ever heard one!

"Ohoho, shit," cried Coy, and his voice didn't just crack, it squeaked. Terror hammered in his chest as the figure pressed the blade of its scythe to his neck. This was the monster who killed everyone at Club Heartless.

Marluxia: I almost wish that scene had been pointless and forgotten, because now I know we’ll have yet another convoluted element to this already overly-dense plot.

"Sshhh," Marluxia crooned.

Terra: Sadly, he’ll never be as famous as crooners like Frank Sinatra.

"Shhhh." He pulled out his cell phone and said, "I've got him, sir."

"Wonderful," said Xehanort over the phone. "Now, you're Greg Coy, correct?"

Axel: (as Coy) …Nnnooo. I’m… *squeaky* Mary. Sweet li’l Mary.
Xion: (as Xehanort) Oh fiddlysticks! Sorry for the interruption, dear. Back to work you go, Marluxia. Apologize to Mary before you leave.

"Y-Yes…"

"You are a Heartless."

"Yes." No sense in lying.

"Where is Diz?"

Terra: In that sort of in-between land making a speech to Aqua.

Coy spoke immediately, "I don't know. I mean it. He sent some of his guys to Miami, but I don't know where he is exactly. I swear on m'mother's grave!"

Marluxia: (as Xehanort) But your mother’s not dead.
Larxene: (as Coy) ...Can I still swear on it?

Xehanort said, "Very well. Who did he send?"

"Um…ummm…"

Roxas: (as Xehanort) Um Ummm? My, what a strange name.

"Do you want to live or die, Coy?"

Axel: (as Coy) True! False! All of the above! Blue whale! 42!

"Moloch!" Coy screamed. "He sent Moloch, didn't he? And two others guys!"

"Thank you, Coy."

"Go fuck yourself," Coy sobbed. "I hate you bastards so much. I'm telling Diz if I ever see'm,

Roxas: (in whiny child voice) I’m telling!

and you guys will regret fuckin' with the Heartless!"

Roxas: (in whiny child voice) Mommy, the other kids won’t play nice with me!

Xehanort said coldly, "Well, you might have lived if you didn't just disgust me with that open threat.

Larxene: (as Xehanort) I might have let you live, but then you insulted me and proved you were an idiot. You die now.

Marluxia, do your thing."

Zexion: (as Marluxia) Overly wrought violence with lots of petty swearing?
Xion: (as Xehanort) As always, honey!

"Yes, sir," said Marluxia, grinning as he hung up. He looked down at Coy, who was clutching onto his bucket of chicken like a young child clutches onto a teddy bear, eyes wide with terror.

Terra: (as Coy) You can kill me, but you can never take my secret blend of eleven herbs and spices away from me!

"I took out most of your power," said the pink-haired fiend in his lofty voice. "Because I had something prepared for you." He walked elsewhere in the apartment,

Marluxia: Not in any specific direction or to another room, just elsewhere.

and Coy considered running but decided that he wasn't fast enough. Marluxia came back with a pair of jumper cables.

"What are you going to do with those?" asked Coy fearfully.

Axel: (as Marluxia) Restart your car so you don’t have an excuse not to go to work tomorrow! Mwhahahaha!
Roxas: (as Coy) You evil jerk!
Mog: *from notes* So he's bz-zapped.

Although being electrocuted something awful, Greg Coy still managed to scream.

Marluxia snickered.

"Oh, c'mon. Don't be so coy…"

Xion: Wow, and I thought I came up with some painfully obvious puns. That one honestly hurt to read.
Zexion: Because it's not even a pun. There's nothing "coy" about being electrocuted to death. This one joke fails on so many levels that I don't even know what to call it.
Xion: Well, I'd call it a revolting joke, but that's just me.

The bucket of chicken rolled onto the ground, spilling the poultry everywhere.

Lexaeus: Still not understanding what importance it bore to the story.
Roxas: (as chicken) Buck-kluck! We’re free, men, free! Let’s go find that Colonel and enact our revenge! BwAWK!

Xehanort hung up his cell phone and went back into Zexion's hotel room. The intellect has his nose in a book like always,

Terra: Deciding not to question what Xehanort does when he’s away.

and Xaldin was leaning against the window, watching the waves of the Pacific Ocean crash down onto the beautiful shores of Hawaii.

Xion: And Xaldin thought to himself, “It must be nice to live on an island with no large cities.”

They both looked up as their superior walked into the room.

"What news on the Heartless?" asked Zexion, shutting his book on poisonous substances. He had stolen it from the desk of the nearby doctor, where he had gone to get many other supplies.

Terra: Why not just ask to borrow it? Not everything you do has to be an illegal activity.
Zexion: Everything we do is evil, even petty theft.

"It seems Diz's whereabouts are unknown, even by his most trusted. One of his more respectable minions, however, is in Miami with two nameless others."

"His name?"

"Moloch."

Axel: (as Xehanort) Just Moloch, no first or middle name. Good luck with the search, boys, I’m off to play beach volleyball.

"I know of that one. He was good with cameras and the art of cinematography. What the hell is he doing all the way in Miami?"

Zexion: Taking pictures perhaps? Is there a law against that in Miami?

"Hopefully looking for that other crime lord," said Xehanort, going to the mini-fridge the room came with and taking out an orange-and-cream soda. "The Someone. The girl."

Zexion rested his chin in his hand and pondered. Xehanort loved the way Zexion's eyes would gloss over when he was deep in thought. An individual who chose to live in his mind…how dangerous.

Marluxia: An individual who chose to live in his shallow, ignorant mind… how pretentious.

And, thankfully, he was on their side. But Xehanort was no fool. He may have treated lesser members such as Demyx or Larxene as employees,

Larxene: *death glare*

but he always made sure to give Zexion his utmost respect. The boy was sharp, perhaps even sharper than Xehanort himself, and although Saix outranked him, Zexion was to be treated with equality from all members of Organization XIII.

Xion: Has anyone else noticed that the instant Zexion got on a plane to Hawaii, his character has radically degressed into a creator's pet?
Roxas: I'm more distracted by how he seems determined to bring you crashing and burning down with him simply because you sort of look like his not-really-ex-girlfriend.
Axel: (as Zexion) If I can't be a well-rounded character *shakes fist* then no one else can!

His thirst for knowledge could not be quenched until he had stepped out of this universe and into Kingdom Hearts.

Zexion: Where hopefully it will drown him and we can stop hearing his incredibly close-minded philosophy.

How Xehanort wished to have met this Zeke Fender sooner, when he was still in his glory days, instead of that disposable Vanitas.

Terra: Maybe then there’d be one less plot element to drag everything down.

"Perhaps we should find this Moloch…" muttered Zexion.

Axel: That’s what you were so deep in thought about all this time? “Hey, we just said we should go find that guy. Maybe we should go find that guy.”
Xion: (as Xehanort) You’re so smart, Zexi! Here, have a cookie.

"I'm sending Marluxia."

Marluxia: I’m going to start demanding overtime. I’m the only one that ever does any work around here.

"With all due respect, sir, I don't think it would be wise to merely kill Moloch. I think what we need to do is reserve for a moment and have some spying done."

Roxas: You know he’s going to be killed anyway, why delay the inevitable? The Senator Coolidge plot went nowhere, this will too.

"What do you have in mind?" asked Xehanort, truly interested. He took a swig of the orange soda and a smile flickered on his face; it was pretty delicious.

Lexaeus: Why have we suddenly stepped into a commercial for orange-and-cream soda?
Axel: A really crappy commercial too. Who’d want the slogan (as announcer) Try our soda! People everywhere say it’s pretty delicious! Drink Average Oranges TM today!

Zexion explained, "Send Larxene with Marluxia.

Larxene: Finally! Finally we team up!

Have her tail the Heartless, because after Coy's death today, Marluxia is going to be known by all of them.

Terra: How? Did he leave any evidence behind?
Axel: (as Heartless) Hey, did anyone else get this weird text message from Coy? All it says is “argalargalarg” and then there’s another one ten seconds later that says “btw, clean up ch1ckn”.

None of the Heartless know who Larxene is, so she'll observe Moloch and his group.

Roxas: (as Moloch) Uh, miss? Could you please stop staring at us?
Larxene: (as self, right in Moloch’s face) I’m following orders. Just remember you don’t know me.
Mog: *from notes* Some speculating on gang wars.

"Actually," spoke Xaldin, surprisingly.

Zexion: No, Lexaeus speaking in a story is surprising.

"If you two don't mind, I would very much like to accompany those two. You see, there's this man in Aqua's empire that I have a grudge against. A very outspoken sonofabitch who I vowed I would kill."

"Oh?" asked Xehanort, sitting up. "Who?"

"People call him 'Isa'. I met him in a bar in Manhattan. Let's just say he's got a big mouth and offended me.

Roxas: (as Xaldin) If you want to know the whole story, he said—
Xion: (as Xehanort) Oh, that's okay, smoochums. We don't need details.
Roxas: (as Xaldin) But... I'm ready to murder this man and you're not even a little curious over the reason why?
Xion: (as Xehanort) Never needed a reason before, why break tradition and start having them now, am I right? Let's go surfing!

If he's there, and something goes down, I want to be there to kill him."

Axel: Good. We won’t miss him.

"Sir, if I may," interrupted Zexion. "But I recall you saying that Aqua was off our hit list. With the KOS

Terra: -MOS?

on all Heartless, exactly what could Moloch do to anyone before being killed by the police himself?"

Roxas: Now I have a question for you, Zexion. How did Aqua fit into that question?

Xehanort said, "The Heartless' criminal enterprise is crumbling.

Terra: How? No, really, how? This story is so clunky I’ve honestly forgotten how their empire is crumbling.
Xion: Don’t you remember that huge paragraph where we found out the Heartless’ empire was built on graham wafer stilts? You all have to learn to pay more attention.

Diz sealed his own fate when he

Lexaeus: Experimented on people's hearts, thus creating Emblem Heartless and leading to his apprentices banishing him to a limbo dimension.

attacked the Monument,

Lexaeus: That too.

although he thinks otherwise.

Roxas: No, he really seems to be at the top of his game right now. He still hasn’t been caught, publicly destroyed a national landmark, and made a cyborg! Why aren’t we following him? He seems way more productive than you.

Him and his gang of chronic masturbators

Xion: Other fun facts: Masturbation can relieve stress, has cardiovascular benefits, can help your immune system because ejaculation increases cortisol at a healthy level and can apparently prolong your life if done frequently. So being a chronic masturbator isn’t as much as an insult as you think it is.
Zexion: Also, it makes Xehanort sound like a middle schooler.

are the only ones who don't know of the danger that they're in…that anyone can kill them for a profit from the good ol' government.

Roxas: I’d think they’d like that. It’d certainly make a more interesting story than your side of things where nothing is standing in your way.

Once they inevitably collapse, who will they turn to? The only other head in the crime world: Aqua.

Larxene: (as Aqua) Ah crap, my head fell off my neck again.

That does not concern me so much, however. Aqua is not as reckless as Diz,

Roxas: (as Xaldin) Or you, sir.
Xion: (as Xehanort) You promised you weren’t going to start that argument again.
Roxas: (as Xaldin) I’m just saying, you could learn a thing or two from her.
Xion: (as Xehanort) Shh!

and isn't known for killing thousands of people at a time just to feel like she's made a point…like Diz does.

Terra: I guess technically that relates to canon? Ansem did create more Heartless problems, after all. But Aqua’s a crime lord, so you’re still losing points.

For now, she is not a threat to us.

Axel: (as Xehanort) She’s only a woman, they’re not much trouble.

But just because she might not be an adversary doesn't mean I don't want to keep track of her.

"As for Moloch and the others, I'm not sure. Apparently they've been sent to Miami by Diz,

Larxene: Yeah, we know! Tighten up your dialogue and get to the point!

so the only logical explanation I can come up with is that they're off to assassinate Aqua.

Roxas: Let’s hope it goes better than our plans to assassinate Senator Coolidge.
Marluxia: Just because the story’s forgotten about it doesn’t mean we have.

They can do so for all I care, Zexion; Aqua is not a threat to me,

Zexion: (as self) Yes, sir, I know. You just said that a few sentences ago.
Lexaeus: (as Xehanort) I just like to know we’re on the same page.

so I'm very apathetic about her fate. All I care about now is having Moloch tailed in order to find where Diz is. And then I shall crush him."

"I thought the Heartless were to fall anyways?"

"Yes, and bring how many with them? Diz is stubborn, so I want him dead as quickly as possible. I wouldn't put it past him to issue a hundred massacres across the U.S., killing thousands of future drones we all need in the Organization.

Xion: (as Xehanort) He'd be killing people before we got the chance to kill people. What a rude meanyhead.

We had once thought the Virus could work on the dead, and it turns out we were wrong."

Axel: (as Xehanort) While Zexion was stealing his poison book, I nicked a high school biology textbook. Do you know that viruses can only replicate inside living cells? Guess this throws our one and only plan in the crapper. How many false starts is this for us, now? An even dozen? I say we screw up one more time just to make it thirteen. It's fancy, I like it, let's do it!
Marluxia: (as Xaldin) *leers at Zexion* If you'd bothered to do well in high school, you would have saved us all so much trouble and wasted time.

Zexion thought of the Guidos

Roxas: WHY DO YOU KEEP USING THAT WORD?!

Larxene had slaughtered at Seaside Heights and nodded.

Terra: Did this fic decide what plot points would be important by drawing them from a hat? It drops and revives plot elements at random.

"Sir," said Xaldin apologetically. "I'm sorry, but I'd really appreciate it if I could go to Miami as well.

Zexion: (as Xaldin) It was called “America’s Cleanest City” in 2008, and I’d like to see for myself if that’s still true, sir.

If Isa is with the girl…I want to be the one to kill him."

Xion: (as Zexion) Now you’re repeating yourself too.
Roxas: (as Xaldin) I also like to know we’re on the same page!

"Very well, my good friend," said Xehanort, beaming. "We'll get going right now. Zexion, Xaldin and I will be out of your hair-"

Larxene: Your dumb looking hair.
Zexion: Stop nitpicking my hairstyle, I didn't character design myself.

"Ah, wait sir," said Zexion. Xehanort turned to face him, because something was wrong with the youth's voice.

Lexaeus: Maybe it’s that British accent he never uses.

"What's wrong?" asked Xehanort. Xaldin stopped at the doorway and turned around, his natural grimace still poisoning his face.

Xion: That’s no way to refer to your boyfriend, Xe! You’ll make him feel bad.

"Er…I was wondering if…if you could possibly take Xion back with you?"

"Why in the world would I do that?

Roxas: Because she’d like to be near her boyfriend so they could comfort each other as their lives are turned upside down?
Terra: So maybe they could interact and actually give us a relationship to care about?
Zexion: Or, from a purely business standpoint, he won’t have to worry about her. She can’t help him with the Virus and I’m sure she never expressed any choice in wanting to come here in the first place.

Do you not like her? I thought you two would appreciate one another, Zexion…"

Xion: (as Xehanort) Do you not like her existing only to think about how hard your life must be and not having a personality or identity of her own? I thought you’d rather enjoy it.
Mog: *from notes* The bosses leave.

Zexion collapsed into his folded arms and cried.

Zexion: *deadpan* No.

He cried until his eyes were blood-red and then, for good measure, cried some more.

Zexion: No. A hundred times no, I’m not taking this insult. *thump* Back to the desk I go.

How could he fee like such shit? How could he possibly let this get to him to the point where it interfered with his life's work? A girl from fucking high school. From high school.

Larxene: You can join all the other fictional characters who act as if the most important point in life is prom, you’re not alone.

And here he was, bawling his eyes out over her. And she had no idea…never would have an idea…how much she meant to him. It was irrational. It made no sense. How could he possibly…?

Marluxia: ...be this damn boring of a character?

He got a hold of himself and, through uncontrollable sobs, he began to read again. Soon, however, the words on the pages of his book turned into a spring's day on the football field of his old high school.

Terra: (as Zexion) I was in the hotel room when the drugs began to take hold.

Shift…

Roxas: Wait a cotton-picking minute, that 'shift' thing was only meant to be for Keyblade-induced visions.
Axel: The fic is now saying otherwise. You can either read the character's Wikipedia articles or read START FLASHBACK. Take the lesser of two evils and go with it.

It was warm out, the birds were chirping, and everything had just come to life from the dreary winter.

Larxene: Oh goody, ironic cheeriness. This flashback’ll be good, I can tell.
Mog: *from notes* Fake grass in gym class!

A group of younger girls in short-shorts ran past him, their ponytails flipping around as they jogged. Naturally, Zexion looked at their rear-ends,

Roxas: Or how about he respected their bodies and continued looking at the scenery he was interested in before?
Xion: I know this may come as a shock, but there are men out there who aren’t controlled completely by their penises.

but stopped once he saw the shining red hair for the first time.

Terra: *singing* Dreeeeeeeaaaaaaamweeeaaaver!

The girl who had such a beautiful hue pouring from her head was wearing a white shirt and pink shorts.

Lexaeus: Her hue was soaking them.

Her skin was cream-colored, and as she ran past Zexion her head turned. He saw her face and immediately his heart sank into his stomach…little did he know, that's where it would stay to rot for eternity.

Xion: You should go see a doctor, Zexion. Your stomach acids should have taken care of that much sooner.

The girl slowed down.

"Hi," she said, smiling.

Larxene: (as Kairi) Hi, you look like you want an excuse to complain unceasingly about anything for years on end. Can I help?

Her teeth weren't perfect, but the smile was the most beautiful thing Zexion had ever seen. Her eyes were green and deep with kindness.



Axel: Man, look at those green eyes! That’s sure a deep shade of green! That’s the greenest green I’ve ever seen!

As she slowed down to run with him, he could vaguely smell the aroma of roses. This made a hot blush creep up into his face.
What the hell is happening to me? he thought giddily.

"H-hi," he stammered. He could barely look her in the eyes.

Roxas: Her GREEN eyes.

"What's your name?" the girl asked politely.

Larxene: (as Zeke) Iloveyou.

"Zeke. Yours?"

"Kairi. It's a nice day out, huh?"

"Oh…yes." And hot, too, oh God, how hot it seemed! "It's very beautiful out."

Marluxia: Small talk about the weather. We are actually reading small talk about weather. Next we’ll be treated to an essay on grass growing and a thesis on paint drying.

"It's a nice day to play some games, dontcha think? Do you play any sports?"

Axel: (as Zeke) Is obsessing over you a sport? I’ll make it one to impress you!

Zexion was dimly aware that he and Kairi had slowed down and were walking side-by-side, like a couple taking a stroll through the park. This analogy colored Zexion's face again.

Lexaeus: Just then the teacher yelled at them for stopping in the midst of the exercise.

"Oh, no. Not too into sports," he said, and realized that he probably made a mistake. Most girls liked the jock-types, not the know-it-all underachievers.

Mog: The admins would like to point out that a majority of their classmates - both guys and girls- were involved in band, various sports, clubs, and most the class graduated with honours.
Roxas: That’s the amazing thing about people. They tend not to be one strict stereotype.

But Kairi said, "No, I didn't think so. You don't act like one of those Neanderthals."

Axel: He does, however, act like an arrogant asshole.
Roxas: Also, way to be rude, Kairi.

Zexion laughed nervously.

Kairi smiled. "Well it was nice meeting you, Zeke. Maybe we'll hang out sometime?"

Larxene: (as Zeke) Dur purty gurl.
Mog: *more notes* Conversations ends.

Shift…

Roxas: This isn’t a screenplay. You don’t need to put in “CUT TO: INT. CAFETERIA - LUNCHTIME”. You put in a few paragraph breaks and we can literally fill in the blank for ourselves.

Zexion sat at the lunch table he shared with his acquaintances (he rarely considered them friends),

Xion: Their names were Mike, Jessica, Ben, and Angela.

staring at Kairi from across the school's cafeteria, laughing as her new boyfriend made a couple of jokes.

Axel: (as Zeke) Grrrr. That bastard. He’ll never have what Kairi and I have. He’ll never have chit-chat about weather!

All the while, Zexion kept thinking why, why couldn't he be funny and charming like that…

Zexion: Because you don’t even try.

Shift…

Graduation day.

Terra: That Vitamin C song is still playing.

His asshole parents didn't bother to show up.

Axel: Oh great, another deadbeat parents plot line.
Terra: (as parents) 'Ello, son. We would join you but the story is unable to have supportive parent characters, because that is so much work nowadays, so we’re going to stay home. Ta-ta, good chap!

His "friends" were all happy he had made it through high school with barely-passing grades.

Larxene: You know you’re a douchebag when even your imaginary friends don’t like you.
Marluxia: Why does this story keep bringing up his under-achieving? It won’t make me feel sorry for him, it’s his own fault, and he himself clearly doesn’t care.

The night air was warm,

Terra: Didn’t you just say it was day?

yet Zexion felt cold inside. He always did, now.

Xion: His daily diet of ice cubes helped.
Roxas: So many songs to reference, so little time to fit them in.

A big ruffian who had also graduated tonight bumped into him.

Axel: (as ruffian) Oops, sorry.
Roxas: (as Zeke) YOU SLUG! I WILL CRUSH YOU AND EVERYONE YOU KNOW WITH MY SUPER-SMARTNESS AND THEN I WILL BE THE ONE BUMPING INTO YOU! AS A CORPSE! BECAUSE YOU WILL BE DEAD! FOREVERRRRRR!
Axel: (as ruffian) …You should have saved the drinking for grad party, dude.

"Watch yourself, fucking insect," sneered Zexion.

Larxene: (as ruffian) Uhh, do I look like an arthropod to you? And I don't even have an exoskeleton! No wonder you got such crap grades, bro.

He didn't have a purpose for calling this person such a name, but what could he do? Act friendly, even apologize?

All: Yes.

Why the fuck should he?

Zexion: Because then you’d stop acting like the world revolves around you.

Who ever apologized to him, when the love of his life was in the hands of…

…the person he had just insulted.

Kairi's gorilla-like boyfriend pushed Zexion, hard, in response to the name-calling.

Terra: And the fact that he seems to think one brief encounter means Kairi should belong to him and not go out and get a boyfriend of her own choosing.
Roxas: This is beyond annoying, he’s flat-out entitled. He thinks he owns Kairi! And we’re supposed to feel sorry for him!!!

After many months of holding it in, Zexion roared and attacked the kid, overwhelming him and beating him senseless. He felt the hands of many people trying to pull him off, until one soft, long-fingered hand smacked his across the face, hard. It stung where he had been hit, and he pressed his own hands against the numbing pain.

Zexion looked up to see Kairi, breathing heavily, eyes wide with shock.

"Let go of him you…asshole!" she shrieked at him.

Xion: *cheers* Go Kairi!
Roxas: You tell him, girl!

All the fight left his body. He couldn't remember what happened next, but he woke up the next morning in his bedroom, pillow stained with his tears.

And he knew he had fucked up permanently.

Zexion: *head on desk* I have the acute sensation that something stupid happened.
Larxene: ...That’s it?! That’s what we’ve been building up to this entire time? A girl you talked to once rightfully calls you an asshole for beating up her boyfriend in a fight you started because you thought you owned her. That’s “the turning point in which she humiliated me”?! SHE HAD JACK SQUAT TO DO WITH THAT! All that flashback has shown us is you’re an immature brat who refuses to take responsibility for his own actions. EEFFFF YOOOUUUU!!
Marluxia: She couldn’t even curse properly, that’s how mad she is.

Shift…

*Mog does some editing voo-doo*

CUT TO:
UNSPECIFIED LOCATION - PRESUMABLY DAY - ONE YEAR LATER


No college.

Marluxia: Your own fault for not even trying.

No hope. No happiness.

Zexion: Why should I care?

Zexion was a Heartless, respected by his fellows for his knowledge in computers. And oh was he heartless.

Roxas: Yeah, we’ve picked up on that by now.
Axel: Have you not been paying attention to our hate?

His weak insides had built him a stronger, untrusting exterior, and a despising of…well, almost everyone.

Larxene: Because of one girl? Dude, there are some people who get rejected dozens of times, shut up and move on!

How could he offer joy to a world in which he had received none?

Terra: Can’t you just go pet a puppy in the street or something?

People had died because of him, him, one year after high school and living in the shittiest apartment in the city. He had altered many lives permanently, but still found no joy.

Zexion: Why not volunteer at an animal shelter? A soup kitchen? How about you do something for another person? Would that be so hard? For you, presumably yes.

He didn't care about people knowing he was tough enough to best them…

Roxas: Yes you do! All you ever do is talk about how awesome you are and how you’re better than everyone else! You never stop caring about what people think of you.

he wanted to do something.

Lexaeus: Work at a charity or donate to one then.
Xion: PSHAW!

Many nights he spent bent in front of his computer, tears pouring down his face,

Axel: Oh my god. Most fics just joke about Zexion looking like an emo kid, but this story actually made him one.
Xion: *browsing through her list of song references* Okay, I think I might have found a good theme song for Zeke. Everyone, go check out Hollywood Undead's “Black Dahlia”, it's the most emotastic song I know.

destroying the home systems of thousands of families across the globe, just because he could. But what was he accomplishing?

Larxene: Fucking over innocent people because—GASP—a girl dared to have a life of her own?

Seemed like nothing, almost…

Lexaeus: Again I point to our “volunteer or donate” option. That would help people and give you a sense of purpose.

Shift…

CUT TO:
INT. ZEKE’S HOUSE(?)/ZEKE’S CUBICLE IN HEARTLESS HEADQUARTERS(?)/A GARBAGE BIN BEHIND A WENDY’S(?) - DAY/NIGHT/MAGIC HOUR/WHO CARES


The telephone rang. Surprisingly.

Axel: (as Zexion) That thing I’ve been using to hold bananas is making sounds, what the hell?

He never had any calls. He rushed to the phone…

Roxas: (as Zexion) OMIGAWD KAIRI IS IT YOU? I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS DAY I NEVER STOPPED THINKING ABOUT YOU AND SOMETIMES I EVEN IMAGINE YOU’RE RIGHT BESIDE ME AND WE HAVE ENTIRE CONVERSATIONS ABOUT HOW MUCH YOU LOVE ME AND I’M SO GLAD WE’RE GETTING BACK TOGETHER!
Xion: (as phone caller) ...Uh. Sorry, wrong number. Ur, good luck with that whole girl thing, though. *click*

"You are an intellect with much potential. With you, I can change your life forever. With you, I can make you a god," said Christopher Xehanort softly.

The voice reassured young Zexion.

"Okay."

"Shall you join my Organization? You'll be number six…"

"I will."

He did…

Marluxia: Succinct phone conversation, at least.
Terra: He joined up so quickly that I believe he'd join anyone that called him up right then. Want to drive an ice cream truck? Sure! Want to do deep-sea welding, one of the most dangerous occupations in the world? Sure! As long as I'm allowed to talk for weeks about myself, I'm up for anything!

Shift…

CUT TO:

INT. ZEXION’S HOTEL ROOM - PRESENT DAY

Zexion: I’d like to point out that not once in any of those flashbacks did it mention Zeke’s British origins, which proves how entirely pointless that facet is.

When he was done reminiscing, Zexion closed his book again and decided to take a shower. It was that time of day to at least attempt to wash these bad memories away.

Roxas: …But where was the joke?
Terra: What joke?
Roxas: There was supposed to be a joke! Remember, he was on a football field, girl of his dreams, “with fronds like these”, blah blah blah. He never told a joke. He barely even interacted with people except to be a jerk to them.
Zexion: *scribbles in the book without even looking at it* There, your complaint has been logged.

He scrubbed to no avail.

Larxene: Tip your fedora harder, why doncha!

Although close to midnight back on the East Coast, here in Nevada the sun was setting into the sandy horizon of the deserts surrounding this beautiful city of lights and luck.

Marluxia: That sentence was a nice writing exercise, I'm glad it was forcibly shoved in here.

Sora had been to Times Square,

Lexaeus: Roughly an eon ago he said his parents weren’t letting him see the sights.
Roxas: Did we ever get an explanation behind why they weren’t doing vacationy things with their son?
Axel: It’s Sora O’Reily. Would you extend the amount of time you spent around him?

but he had never seen such beauty in human architecture before looking at the streets of Las Vegas. He suddenly felt like a big-shot.

Roxas: (as Sora) Wow, I’m in Vegas and it’s cool! I know I was just going on about how distraught I was over my parents’ murders, but I guess I’m over that now!

Hell, he thought with some amusement. I'm even here with Demyx!

Terra: (as Sora) An unconscious, beaten black-and-blue Demyx who will probably die soon thanks to me. Life don’t get much better than this!

I am a big-shot!

Goofy saw Sora's awe and said firmly,

Marluxia: (as Goofy) Why are you so dumb all the time?

"Don't get too wowed, okay? We have a mission to do. In and out." He turned to Demyx, who was looking at the city with a look of reproach and pushed him roughly on the shoulder. "Don't fuck this up, pretty-boy. You lead us to him. Remember: until we catch your little friend Picard, here, we're your bodyguards."

"My bodyguards consist of a little teenaged asshole and his fire-crotch girlfriend?" sneered Demyx.

Roxas: That insult just keeps sounding stupider each time it comes up.
Zexion: Although, I’m loathe to admit, he is right in pointing out how fallible this plan is.

Goofy growled,

Xion: Which I think is the closest he’s come to being in character, since dogs do that.

"Hysterical.

Marluxia: Sarcastically pointing out how annoying these characters are doesn’t make it less frustrating to read over and over again.

Kairi will be your traveling agent, Sora your equipment caretaker."

Roxas: (as Demyx) You mean a roadie?
Axel: (as Goofy) See, Sora? I told you the name wouldn’t work.

"And when everyone in the casino Luxord is in sees you're all carrying weapons"

Roxas: Then they’ll immediately forget.
Xion: (as crowd) Ooh, a castle! Ooh, a castle! *gasp* Omigawd, a castle!

"They won't," assured Goofy.

Terra: I won't bother questioning this leap in logic. Just like I won't question how they got said weapons onto a plane.

"Now let's get a move on, shall we?"

Roxas: (as Goofy) Need I remind you we have only 48 hours? Move move move!

The group of five hailed a taxi, only to find it being used by a family of three.

Xion: (as family) Hi, we’re Peggy, Andy, and Sue Dayruiner! Nice to meet you!

Only two seats remained.

Zexion: Musical chairs: Life and death edition.

"Fuck," swore Don.

Lexaeus: No need to be specific, everyone swears in this story.

"Alright, Sora. You and the rock star will go in this one. We'll get another one

Roxas: Why not just send this one away, call a different taxi and stick together?
Terra: (as Peggy Dayruiner) You have a rock star with you? Can we get his autograph?
Xion: (as Kairi) Great job immediately blowing our covers, guys. This is why I stay quiet.

and meet you at the casino, which is called the Golden Lion.

Marluxia: It’s owned by MGM.

It won't look like much, but whatever. You'll recognize it.

Lexaeus: You’ve never seen it before, but you’ll recognize it.

We'll be right behind you, alright?"

"Alright," said Sora, hopping into the cab with Demyx.

Roxas: (as Sora) Man, I love being the main character! You get so many perks! I mean, I’m the most inexperienced member of our little group but I’m the one that gets to hang out with the kidnappee! Let’s talk about life and death and stuff!
Mog:*from notes* The Dayruiners leave shortly.

"Why," asked Sora incredulously. "Would you get into this kind of shit if you knew you'd be screwed over if you decided it wasn't for you?"

Axel: (as Demyx) Because I wanted to be a failing musician! How was I supposed to know that putting my name out there would inevitably get me recognized and get me in trouble?

"It's for me," defended Demyx. "Who are you to say it's not?"

Marluxia: (as Sora) The fact that I’m technically holding you hostage right now.

"I like to think I'm a good person.

Axel: (as Sora) But I’m dead wrong!

I like to think we're all good people.

Terra: Uh, what does this have to do with his question?
Zexion: Oh, don’t worry, it’s just Sora spouting out non-sequiters so we can get to a point without flowing naturally. Why else do you think he consistently jumps to stupid conclusions? He’s pretty much “Getting to Point B: The Character”.

But I also think you just got caught up in something you might not have fully wanted to."

Terra: Okaaaay, what does that have to do with his question and what you were saying about good people?
Roxas: Just a few scenes ago you were going on about how you hated him and would never sympathize with him and now you’re offering him empathy? How can one person be so fickle?

"If you think all people are good, kid, you have a lot to learn about the world."

Marluxia: (as Demyx) Be ignorant in a way that makes you more cynical. Realizing good things happen isn’t considered mature anymore.

Sora said nothing.

Demyx continued, "The pink-haired motherfucker who helped me take your parents…"

"Marla Shift."

"That's right. You know what his job is right now?

Terra: To go around and do gory things that don’t actually add to the story?

To kill or mutilate any enemies of our Organization.

Roxas: And even though we just said his scenes don’t add much, it’s still better than scenes of other Org members killing innocent beach-goers and bowlers that weren’t opposing them in any way.

Do you think he winces when he does it? Do you think he even gives a damn? Of course not. He's a monstrosity."

"And yet you work with him still."

Zexion: Would you leave the place that would most likely kill you upon resignation?

"Whatever, I don't mind, per se.

Marluxia: (as Demyx) If “per se” means “yes, I mind a great deal and that’s why I’m calling him a monstrosity and other negative words.”

It's all working towards the greater good. Our greater good."

"Organization XIII," said Sora.

"Yeah."

Sora leaned forward in his seat. "You said you were trying to make it to 'Kingdom Hearts'. What is that?"

Zexion: Light. It’s a rather positive force in life, but this fic seems to want to squash all hope and joy from you through a conceited story that has far outworn its welcome.

"I won't talk about that." The rock star shifted in his seat. "Not that."

"Fair enough," said Sora, sighing.

Roxas: Why be fair? He kidnapped your parents and led them to their deaths. You don’t seem to have a strict moral code, so why bother with justice now?

"You have another member with one of these, don't you?" He wielded the Keyblade and waved it near Demyx's face. Demyx said nothing.

Xion: (as driver) What the heck are these two talking about? Eh, doesn’t matter, I know enough English to understand one of ‘em’s an assassin. I’m going to call the police on them once they're out of earshot.

"I was attacked by someone with two." Demyx still said nothing.

Marluxia: Because he’s bored.

"I think it was someone from your group. But he was masked, so I haven't a clue who he is or what he looks like. That means so far, I know your leader…Xehanort. I know Marla Shift, or Marluxia, as you call him. You and Luxord. Whoever that masked guy with the Keyblades was…and Ryan Hall."

Demyx looked at Sora, shocked.

Sora smiled. "Surprised? So am I…

Roxas: (as Sora) The name just popped into my head just now and I decided to say it. That happens a lot, these random ideas in my head, but it always keeps conversations going, so I’ve never bothered to filter it out.

who is he?"

"Who is who?"

"Ryan Hall."

"I don't…"

"We'll eventually get you to talk anyway, so you might as well tell me before the information is fucking beaten out of you."

Roxas: (as Sora) Do you want Goofy to sing “After Today”? Do you?
Xion: (as Demyx) No! I only just got that song out of my head after ten years! Please don’t remind me of it again!
Terra: (as Cab-driver) Hey! I liked that song!

Demyx scowled and said, "He's the newest member, and the youngest. Maybe just a bit older than you. You remind me of him, just through your mannerisms.

Axel: (as Demyx) You’re both so naive I have to wonder how you’ve survived for 17 years, and he hates everyone and everything- You’re like brain twins!

Hell, you two even look alike.

Roxas: Oh sure, now you bring that up.

You related to him?"

"No, of course not."

Zexion: (as Sora) I memorized our entire family tree to the most distant of relations, so I know for certain.

The cab turned at a less-lit street.

Axel: (as cab driver) Alright, I found the most depressing street I could. Moody enough for your little tale?

Many of the buildings appeared rather ramshackle, and there were some shady-looking people walking the sidewalks here.

Roxas: (as Sora) It’s perfect! Here, have a big tip.
Xion: (as cab driver) Yay! I’m going to buy my lovely wife some roses.

They approached a square, brick building with a small black sign that read "The Golden Lion" in very fancy lettering. Exquisitely-dressed men were standing at the front door, and there was a line to get in.

Sora and Demyx got out of the taxi, and Sora stopped the rock star short when he tried to walk in.

"What the fuck?" demanded Demyx.

"We wait for the others, first."

Axel: (as Demyx) *points behind Sora* Look, a huge distracting thing!
Roxas: (as Sora) *turns around* Where?!
Lexaeus: And then Demyx ran away and proved Sora to be the worst person to have this job.
Mog: Congrats, you're halfway through this chapter!

Part II: Pick a Card, Any Card

Senator Mick followed Everett

Everyone: *turns to everyone else* Who?
Terra: Do you know who Everett is?
Roxas: No. Are we supposed to?
Zexion: Have our brains begun to shut down and repress our memories of this awful story?
Mog: No no no, it’s okay. This guy just showed up now. You kupos aren’t supposed to know who he is.
Larxene: When the giant cast has us doubting our own selves, something is seriously wrong somewhere and it’s not with us.

through the police department, a cigarette dangling out of his mouth like a lollipop.

Xion: *singing* Lollipop, lollipop, oh lolli lolli lolli, lollipop!
Mog: *from notes* Everyone swoons as Mick walks by.

Everett said, "I promise you, Senator, this guy's the best around. Responsible for arresting over forty Heartless members, and the killer of twelve Heartless who came at him shooting." They walked towards an office, and Everett opened the door. "Sir…meet Detective Judas Braig."

Terra: ...’Kay.
Roxas: Judas? What parent would name their child that? That’s practically asking them to be shoved into this story, and that’s child abuse right there.

In this private office there was a man sitting at his desk, tossing a ball up and down as he casually leaned back on his chair.

Zexion: Like everyone else, he spends his time accomplishing nothing of worth.
Axel: He’s fitting in already.

His skin was tan, his face beardless. His eyes glowed with a dark merriment. Underneath his dress clothes was a tough, muscular body.

Marluxia: This description brought to you by an online character generator.

The guy couldn't have been any older than thirty-five. As Mick entered, Everett left the room and shut the door behind him.

Roxas: (as Everett) Now that I’ve had my not-introduction, I’ll be by the vending machine if anyone needs me. See ya later!

Mick took a seat in front of the Heartless-killer's desk.

"So," said Mick. "You're the famous Braig."

Terra: So famous we never knew he existed until five seconds ago.

Braig said nothing, but he grinned, showing perfect teeth.

This guy's not just a hero, he's a damn supermodel, thought Mick, somewhat impressed.

Xion: Maybe the family’s a front so Mick can be in denial about his sexuality.
Terra: So are we just forgetting about the one eye, the scars, the abnormally pointy ears?
Axel: This is another character not related to their Nobody, isn’t it?

Braig then spoke, his voice calm and reassuring, "Famous? That's a bit of a stretch, Senator. But, hell, I'll take it. What is it that you want from me today?"

"I want to ask you about some things."

"Alright, Senator. Shoot."

Larxene: (as Mick) Bang!
Axel: (as Braig) Ow! Not that kind of shoot!
Larxene: (as Mick) *sadface* But it’s how I solve all my problems.

"Now, as I take it, you've had many incidents regarding the Heartless. So many that you've been promoted to the head of their case. You're the guy in charge of finding them, the highest-ranking Heartless hunter in Manhattan."

Roxas: After the Heartless hunter at the Smithsonian, of course.
Mog: *from notes* Talk about Coy’s death.

"Jesus," said Mick, feeling sick. "Who could have done this? And with what?"

Marluxia: (as Braig) A writer with a pen.

"A blade, maybe. That's what most here seem to think. As for the who, we don't know. Coy was a fucking loyal Heartless, so it makes no sense for him to be killed off by his own teammates."

Zexion: Did no one in this story take high school English? Not a single person ever elaborates on their points.

"One of the people hunting for the reward?"

"That makes no sense;

Terra: (as Braig) Don’t bother speaking, Mr. Senator, I’m obviously the brains of this operation. Now, what I hypothesize happened was that the killer was after his secret magical golden orange. We didn’t find it at the scene which means they stole it, which means I’m right. THAT’s the stuff that makes sense!

if they wanted the reward, they would have turned him in, dead or alive. What's really strange is that we found this at the scene of the crime…" Braig opened up his desk drawer and pulled out a small plastic bag.

Axel: OMIGAWD A PLASTIC BAG WHAT DOES IT MEAN HIDE YOUR CHILDREN FROM THIS SORCERY!

Inside was a small, pink, pretty flower.

Roxas: Do you know what else has a pretty pink flower? The game Flower. Do you know what is a gorgeous and relaxing game? Flower. Do you know what game has a beautiful and emotional conclusion? Flower. Do you know what we could be playing right now?
Xion: Journey?

Mick's body went numb as he whispered, "Oh, shit."

"Sir?"

Terra: (as Mick) I have horrible pollen allergies! Don’t let that near me!

"Braig, what I'm about to ask you and tell you next is not to be repeated by you anytime soon.

Roxas: (as Everett) I’m eavesdropping outside the door. Can I repeat it?

As high-ranking as you are, I'm in the lead of the entire Heartless-case. If you repeat any of this, I can have your life ruined, and you'll be behind bars getting ass-raped by some motherfucking thug named Bubba

Larxene: Shrimp? What?

as soon as I can get you there.

Lexaeus: Why does this man constantly go to “you’ll be sexually assaulted” when trying to make people listen to him? It’s incredibly juvenile.
Zexion: I said this before and I’ll say it again: If this is how Mick argues, Senate hearings must be interesting to say the least.

And, believe me, I will know if you've talked."

Xion: (as Mick) Do you see my ears? They’re like satellite dishes, they pick up everything!

Braig's eyes clouded with fear.

Larxene: As if.

"Hey, okay. I get it. I won't say anything. You can trust me, Senator. I want the Heartless gone for good."

Roxas: Because this is Braig, I’m thinking he’s a corrupt cop working for the Heartless, the people he’s arrested and killed before were members that were offed to protect his double-agent job, and this compliance is all just an act, giving Braig an opportunity to get in Mick’s good graces and betray him and everyone that works for him.
Xion: Neat plotbunny. Too bad you cursed it by saying it out loud. Braig’s a good guy now.

Mick nodded and downed his Scotch. When he was done, Braig loyally filled the glass back up, close to the rim.

Lexaeus: Perhaps this is why we introduced that Everett character. He’s Mick’s sober driver.

"Detective, I have recently been given the information about a couple cases of homicide and kidnapping. Apparently, there are a group of scientists and madmen striving to breed a disease that could possibly wipe out the majority, if not all, of the population.

Zexion: (as Mick) It’s the very title of this fic and yet there are numerous subplots that do not relate to it at all.
Larxene: Focus, fic, just focus for one minute!

My agents managed to find one of them, who is the musician Demyx."

"Never heard of him."

Zexion: We’ve gone so back and forth on whether Demyx is famous or not, I honestly have no idea if it counts as a contradiction anymore.

"Doesn't matter. They are off, right now, to find another member of this group, named Jackson Picard, alias being 'Luxord'. Another is Marla Shift, the serial killer, who I believe killed this man Coy amongst others. As for the leader…well, I need some information on him.

Terra: Like what he was doing between talking to Ryan in the Met and then killing McLean? As the leader of your ragtag band, I would like to think he wasn’t off twiddling his thumbs waiting for a dramatic entrance.

You must have heard something about him."

Larxene: (as Braig) Well... I’ve heard rumours he may be dating Xaldin, though I’m still not sure on that, and the only word to describe his personality is “flamboyant”.

"Okay…who is he?"

"Christopher Xehanort."

Roxas: Why couldn’t he have called himself Ansem or Xemnas? He was a well-known scientist in the 40’s, keeping his identity intact is going to bite him in the butt sooner or later.

Braig shook his head slowly. "No, the name doesn't ring a bell, I'm afraid.

Xion: You’d think he’d have a given name more foreign sounding than “Christopher” to fit to the unusual surname. Anisim is Russian (I’m assuming he’s Russian here), is similar to Ansem, and is connected to the Greek name Onesimos which means “beneficial, profitable” thus fitting to how Xehanort views himself.
Terra: Holy tangential research, Batman.
Xion: It’s just plain more interesting.

But this group interests me. Marla Shift, you say? That fucker's out of prison?

Axel: (as Braig) He’s gotten out so many times you’d think he was a recurring comic villain or something.
Mog: *from notes* Mick finally figures out the Heartless and the Organization are not in the same club.

"That's why I want your help, Braig. My agents are bringing Demyx and Picard back here to Manhattan in a little less than a day. I want you to help us interrogate them."

"Why me?"

Zexion: Why not? Our character list has already reached forty-some named characters, so what’s another thing for our audience to try and remember?

"Because you seem like a genuinely good guy to me."

Xion: (as Mick) You have this sort of space-pirate vibe to you. I like that!

"Aw, shucks, Senator…"

Axel: I hope that “aw shucks” was supposed to be taunting, because that is not the Braig I know and love to hate.

"I mean it, man," Mick laughed.

Larxene: This story just continues to show it doesn’t give a damn about canon characterization.

"You and I have had a common enemy for a while. But now there's someone else, someone new, and I think they might have a lot more in store for the world than a broken monument."

Braig nodded.

"Meet me at my penthouse when I call you.

Roxas: (as Mick) And since I haven’t given you an address, good luck finding it. Consider it a test. You make it there, I won’t continue to destroy the icon of your childhood right in front of you anymore.

And, in case anyone might've heard this conversation…" He looked Braig right in the eyes. "Stay off the streets at night, Detective."

"Okay."

Terra: (as Braig) I would have expected something a little more sinister to carry your threat home, Senator, but okay.

The Senator closed the door behind him, leaving Braig giddy with excitement at the thought of a new enemy for him to vanquish.

Xion: Now that’s more like Braig.

The Golden Lion was a place for serious gamblers to come and stray away from the tourists who walked around the heavenly buildings of light; they practiced their art in this three-star pub. While grand casinos had huge theaters, the Lion had a pianist playing cheery tunes.

Roxas: Her tunes sound like this!

While the grand casinos had clubs, the Lion had a bar with one bartender.

Terra: The recession had hit the seedy bars worst of all.

But one thing that the Golden Lion did have that the big-time casinos did not was Las Vegas' best gambler.

Sora knew Luxord right when he saw him.

Zexion: So at least we wouldn’t have to read about him wandering around looking for the man, thank heavens for that.

He was not sure what gave it away: it was either the flashy white tuxedo he was wearing, the mouth full of gold teeth,

Marluxia: An entire mouthful?
Xion: It’s either show-offy or a way of drawing attention away from his terrible dental hygiene that required fake teeth.
Mog: *from notes* Some more descriptions of Luxord. Then this happens.

Luxord turned when he saw the five of them enter the pub, and cried out happily, "Dem! Good to see ya' mate! Hunka' down! T'ose pussies ain't gonna gamble with the Luscious Lux!"

All: ...the hell?
Roxas: What was that?
Xion: A British-born, Australian-raised, Boston-residing troll as translated by Mr. Saturn?
Axel: It sure as hell wasn't Luxord, I can say that much.

Sora could see that Demyx was worried sick, but still the rock star managed to smile.

"You? Luscious? My ass, dude. When was the last time you got any pussy?"

Roxas: (as Luxord) I’m still grieving the loss of my cat of twelve years, don’t mock me.

"When was the last time you actually got a hit single?"

Terra: I don’t know. I’m not even sure if he did have a hit.

"Touché, mon colleague," said Demyx.

Luxord stared at Sora, Kairi, Donald, and Goofy up and down one at a time before asking his apparent partner,

Lexaeus: Why say “apparent”? They’ve already been confirmed to be colleagues.

"Who're these clowns?"

Demyx laughed and said, "The big guys are my bodyguards. The girl's my travel agent,

Xion: (as Demyx) She’s got her head in the clouds, that’s why she rarely speaks.

and this fuggin' kid here takes care of my shit. Little fucker sucks at his job, though, lemme tell ya'."

Roxas: Have we ever talked about how weird Demyx’s dialogue is? Sometimes he curses, sometimes he doesn’t. It’s not really bad but it is distracting.

"That so?" asked Luxord. He was not smiling. He looked at Sora, and Sora had never felt so intimidated before.

Marluxia: Seeing your parents being kidnapped?
Axel: Some random kid trying to murder you in the street?
Xion: Your own friend going nuts and almost killing you?
Roxas: Not near as scary as a guy that— whoa!— DIDN'T SMILE! Clearly Sora knows all the horrors the world has to offer.

The gaze was harsh, feverish. "You a gambling man, kiddo?"

"N-no," stuttered Sora.

"Even if you're not, maybe you an' I could play some roulette, ol' Russian-style. And, with luck on m'side, you'd have a bullet in your head by the end o'the night.

Larxene: Why don’t you skip the formalities and do it right here and now?

That is, if you keep fuggin' around when you're supposed to be doin' yer job for m'friend. Ya' dig?"

Terra: (as Sora) Um, no? I don't even know what you just said.

"Y-yes."

"Good. Glad we understand each other.

Marluxia: Barely. Your accent is so thick you sound nothing like yourself.
Xion: I remember him speaking quite clearly and eloquently, where did this dialect come from?

Now, if you'll excuse us, Dem and I have some things to talk about…"

"Actually," said Demyx loudly, looking worriedly at Goofy, whose teeth were bared.

Terra: (as a dog) Grrrr!

"I don't feel like talking business, my dude.

Axel: He’s going into full blown surfer-dude mode.

Let's say we go out to a club? We'll talk about all that useless shit tomorrow.

Zexion: All the build-up to this Golden Lion has been fun, so let's abandon it instantly and run off to a nameless nightclub.

Now's the time for partying. I didn't fly to fucking Nevada to talk about financial shit that I don't even understand."

"You sure?" asked Luxord. "The Big Guy won't be pissed?"

"Believe me; the Big Guy won't know a thing."

Luxord's face lit up. "Alright!

Axel: (as Luxord) I enjoy hearing that our leader is incompetent!

There's this small club down the street, 'as a shit-ton of women! Maybe even you will get some tonight, Dem!" He cackled.

Larxene: (as Witch Hazel) Nyee-hee-hee!

Demyx forced a grin. "Can my employees come?"

"Sure, if d'ey pay!"

Demyx looked at Goofy, who nodded grimly.

The rock star turned to the gambler and whispered, "Lead the way."

Xion: Y’know, out of the numerous fics we’ve sporked with the word “way” I’m amazed we never found one with that title.

Xion sat on one of the cushiony seats of Lindworm,

Roxas: She’s on a dragon? Awesome!
Lexaeus: No, sadly. Lindworm is the name of Xaldin’s spear, so it’s most likely the name of his plane to reference that.
Zexion: But Kairi’s eyes will remain green for the rest of the story.

thinking about Zexion.

Marluxia: Always and only Zexion. She has nothing else of importance in her life.

When she had been assigned to accompany him, she had been excited, thinking she was about to make a new friend.

Terra: Which is why the first time they were together she kept thinking he was rude and she felt uncomfortable around him.
Zexion: *noted*

But Zexion wasn't like that. He didn't have friends, perhaps didn't want any.

Zexion: No, Zeke had no friends because they didn’t want anything to do with him, not the other way around.

But for some reason, he gave off a vibe that was almost like a desperate call for help. Why would that be?

Maybe Roxas will know, she thought gloomily,

Lexaeus: Thinking about her supposed boyfriend for the first time, if memory serves me.

but doubted it. Zexion and Roxas were certainly not on good terms.

What was wrong with Zexion? Why was he so mean?

Larxene: Cuz he’s a pile of dicks wrapped up in a douche sandwich. That answer your question?

She swallowed back tears. Naturally an emotional girl, she wasn't fond of apathy or nonchalance…attributes that defined Zexion.

Xion: Eww, it's like I'm his fangirl. But the worst kind of fangirl, the one that goes "No, he's not bad, he's just misunderstood!"

The Superior noticed this as he happily walked around the plane,

Terra: He paced back and forth for hours, humming cartoon theme songs to himself.

and sat next to her, concerned.

"What's wrong, pixie?" he asked.

Zexion: Your character.

She felt his strong arm go around her.

Xion: (as self) Xehanort, what have we said about the personal space bubble?
Axel: (as Xehanort) ...we don't pop it...?
Xion: (as self) That's right. Now back up two feet.

"It's just…it's Zexion, sir.

Roxas: (as Xion) He cast an illusion around me that makes me unable to think about anyone but him. Please help me!

Why doesn't he want me to help?"

"Ah," said Xehanort, pursing his lips. "That, sweetheart, is something I cannot be sure of.

Axel: Who the hell plays any of the games that feature this guy and thinks, “Yeah, he’d totally call someone sweetheart to cheer them up.”
Terra: Xehanort doesn’t care about people’s well-beings. He’s only nice so he can later use them for his own gains.

Zexion is a complex individual, and by far more different than the rest of us.

Marluxia: He has far shallower reasons for joining the Organization than other members.

He seems to be in some sort of internal struggle, but that's what fuels his fire, Xion.

Larxene: We hope it burns him from the inside out.

Whatever is going on up in his ol' noggin

Everyone: *just plain gigglesnort over the idea of Xe saying “noggin”*

is what causes him to strive to know how things work, and how to manipulate them to benefit himself…and us. We don't all have to get along…we just have to tolerate one another as we get the job done."

Terra: So, really, your entire group fails at its only two requisites.

"But why would someone hide their feelings like that?" asked Xion, now puzzled.

Roxas: Why are we not talking about you? You have a good reason to hate the world, yet you still seem pretty upbeat about everything. It’s actually quite endearing. But instead we’re talking about some loser who thought a girl was his property. I'm much more interested in your story and where it's going, why do we never focus on that?

"Perhaps he's not intentionally hiding them," suggest Xehanort. "He could just be stuck on how to ask for help."

Larxene: Yeah, of course. Zexion is just scared and needs someone to help him. That's exactly what I took from that flashback sequence! My nonexistent heart just effing bleeds for his lonely soul!
Mog: *from notes* Final consensus is that Zexion’s weird.

Xion looked at him, saw his smile, and returned it. She suddenly felt a lot better.

Axel: Xion narrowly escaped being an actual human character. Thank god we side-stepped that land mine!

She wondered if the same could be said for Zexion…

Roxas: Wow. Wow. We’ve only been joking about it so far, but that scene honestly consisted of Xion having no thoughts outside of a guy she barely knows.
Zexion: This story should be re-titled "Sexism Snowball" because it is always getting worse the longer it goes.
Lexaeus: And it's always rolling downhill.

Dear Felix,

Xion: The wonderful, wonderful cat!

We're sorry to inform you of your grandfather's passing away. We found his body in his home, with all of his devices still in place with the exception of two.

Terra: (as letter) The bag of tricks he left for you in his will was one.

By the looks of it, he was shot to death. His meeting with the doctor Christopher Xehanort possibly has a connection. We're not sure.

Zexion: But the audience already knows it is, so let’s put the truth out there.

Hopefully, this does not interfere with our business. You are, by far, the best smuggler in America,

Axel: (as letter) You probably already know this, but this story’s getting crowded with even more characters, we gotta establish things quicker and quicker now.

and your family has been in our service for over forty years. We value your contributions, and we value you, Felix, very much.

Roxas: (as letter) We need you to fix-it!

If you wish to find your grandfather's belongings, we are afraid that you must come to Italy…for now, all we could send is a container of fluid that we were not sure what to do with.

Marluxia: (as letter) The last time a man touched it, he started turning into an alien and was a fugitive in Johannesburg, be careful around it.

Your grandfather was working tirelessly on it, however, before his untimely death.

Axel: (as letter) Still establishing quickly, don’t mind our unnatural sounding letter to you.

He called it "Void", and since he always proclaimed it was one of his finest creations, we deemed it appropriate to pass it onto you.

Zexion: (as letter) Have I been pointedly obvious in my exposition yet? Several times? Good, that's one task I can scratch off the to-do list for today.

May your grandfather, Victor Vanitas, rest in peace,
The Scapelli Family


Terra: I can't think of a good way to reference this so I'm just going to say it: that name was also in the Super Mario Bros. movie. Really think about that for a minute. That movie is a better adaption of a video game than whatever this is trying to do.
Xion: At least the Mario Bros. movie had someone to cheer for. That movie had Bob-bomb. There's no Bob-bomb here.

Felix Vanitas stared at the letter, a frown playing on his mouth.

Axel: (as Vanitas) Dammit, why do I gotta be dragged into this fic now too?
Terra: What can he even do? The story's almost over.

He had found this in his mailbox,

Roxas: As opposed to in his cereal box.

in front of his home at Seaside Heights,

Marluxia: Why does this place keep coming back into the story? It's really not that enthralling of a setting, I have to say.

along with a package wrapped in brown paper.

Terra: With a note attached saying "Would you kindly not open this package until these coordinates?"

When he saw it was from his family's long-time employers, the Scapelli crime-empire (which was placed in Italy)

Roxas: Thanks, I would never have figured that out from the Italian surname and them saying they found Vanitas Senior in Italy and Vanitas Junior would have to come to Italy to get his stuff.
Zexion: I swear that this story believes its audience is truly stupid.

he immediately opened up the letter, right on his front lawn.

Xion: Right as the sprinkler system kicked in.
Mog: *from notes* Family matters.

Perhaps it was time to move on from smuggling for that shitheap Scapelli and continue the legacy that was his family.

Terra: Which would be what exactly? Victor barely did anything within his minimal screen time.

He opened the package, and sure enough, resting on a pillow within the box,

Zexion: This story has a serious fetish for the name Chris and MacGuffins resting on pillows.

was a glass container full of a black slime with swirls of red inside.

Roxas: (as Vanitas) It's the blend of red and black licorice Grandpa was trying to perfect his whole life. I'll have to carry on his delicious dream now.

Frowning, Vanitas brought it into his home; he didn't want his neighbors, Cloud and Namine, to see.

Zexion: They’re his only neighbours. It’s just two houses and dozens of miles of nothing surrounding them.

The six of them sat in a row at the bar: Sora, then Kairi, Don, Goofy, Demyx, then Luxord.

Marluxia: I didn’t particularly care the exact order they sat in.
Axel: Of course you do! Needless detail will distract us from all the glaring plot holes and inaccuracies!

This club's interior was almost entirely covered in neon.

Zexion: Not in any tubing, mind you, just the gas choking the air around them.

Many girls were dancing exotically to loud, pounding rave music that blared from the speakers of the DJ, who was jumping up in the air with the beat.

Larxene: Is this a lesbian club? Why are there no men dancing too?

It was a very fast-paced place, incredibly different from the atmosphere of the Golden Lion.

Roxas: Remember the Golden Lion? Remember how useless it was? We do.

Sora and Kairi had gotten in using the fake ID's Mick had whipped up for them,

Axel: Meet Sora O’Retcon and Kairi Afterthought.

and since they had both matured so very much through this adventure of theirs, it was no surprise that they could pass as young adults.

Marluxia: The only truth in that statement is that nothing comes as a surprise anymore.

Both of their faces were young, yes, but hardened from war and loss.

Zexion: Which they’ve never talked about with each other, leaving me the reader unable to connect with their emotional state and therefore decide for myself how much they’ve developed. The fic will not like to know the answer.

Unfortunately, to avoid suspicion, they had to drink.

Roxas: Or you could have just come here to dance. No one’s going to care that much.

Sora didn't really like beer,

Larxene: So try a cooler instead.
Lexaeus: Every character is an addictive complainer.

so he made a couple of faces as it swished around in his mouth, but Kairi was an experienced drinker, and she did just fine on her own.

Roxas: (as Sora) Geez, Kairi, how can you stand this stuff?
Xion: (as Kairi) Oh, it's quite easy after an entire lifetime of doing things the plot says despite common sense and survival instincts saying otherwise. You'll get used to it eventually.

With the taste of beer on his breath, Sora turned to her and said,

Lexaeus: (as Sora) Shouldn’t that sentence be “scent of beer on his breath”?
Zexion: (as Sora) Or “taste of beer on his tongue”? I’m not picky.

"I'm worried about Riku."

Terra: (as Sora) I’m beginning to realize he’s done more to affect the plot than me. What if he steals my main character status?

"Me, too. But it's his nature, Sora. He's a street rat, a hood.

Roxas: I bet all Riku’s doing right now is standing in an abandoned loft singing “If only they’d look closer they’d see...”

He has debts to pay, so he can be free and fight the Heartless."

Xion: (as Sora) ...What?
Axel: (as Kairi) I already explained that backstory to myself. Be quiet and drink your cruddy beer.

"Or the Organization," Sora mumbled.

"Or just both."

Roxas: Hey look, Kairi finally called Sora out for saying something useless.

"Yeah…"

She smiled at him. He smiled back. Then, suddenly, he laughed; inspiration had just struck him.

"What?" she asked, grinning. "What is it?"

He looked at the dance floor and indicated it. "Wanna dance?"

Lexaeus: That’s your “inspiration”?
Zexion: Sora's braincells are overheating from the unprecedented information.

Kairi looked completely taken aback as she said in a hushed voice, "We're on a mission, Sora!"

Roxas: (as Sora) Who cares what you think? I want to dance!

"It's just for one song." He grabbed her hand and pulled her over. "C'mon."

Terra: (as Sora) C'mon, Kai, let me drag you into an action you clearly voiced you didn't want to do. It'll show how equal our relationship is!
Xion: (as Kairi) ...You're a messed up kid.

The four men, both on opposite sides of a war

Larxene: Stop using that word! There’s been no war yet! There hasn't been any battles, there hasn't even been a skirmish yet!

yet sitting with each other and having a couple drinks, watched the young couple go.

Luxord asked, rather obnoxiously, "Oi, so he's boinkin' 'er, then?

Marluxia: No, they don’t even have that going for them. He stares at her and she stands there. This is the most non-committal relationship I've ever seen.

Damn shame, I reckon…I wanted a go at that pink stink.

Zexion: I... I have no words. I honestly have no words to describe how I feel about this character voice.

Redheads always blow t'best." He hiccupped. He was beyond drunk.

Goofy growled to Don under his breath, "When are we gonna do this? I'm getting anxious, now."

"Anxious about what?"

Roxas: (as Goofy) About us getting more screen time! I want to get back to the days at Disney Castle, not be stuck here!

"About Picard here saying something so fucking stupid that I'll punch him in the nose, being unable to contain myself."

Axel: Have you paid attention to his dialogue? Every word out of his mouth is stupider than the last.

"Have more alcohol then, my friend.

Marluxia: (as Don) Lower your inhibitions, that’ll make you care less when you do punch him.

We'll detain Luxord as soon as we leave the pub."

"Tell me, barkeep," called Luxord, rolling a quarter across his knuckles. "You a gambling man?"

Axel: (as barkeep) No, I'm a you-paying-me-to-get-you-drinks man. And once in a while I'd like to be a you-giving-me-my-tips-you-cheapskate man.

The bartender smiled and said, "Sure. What's the bet?"

"Heads, me. Tails, you."

Terra: (as Luxord) By which I mean, heads I win, tails you lose.
Mog: *from notes* Coin tricks.

"Holy shit!" cried the bartender, again opening his wallet.

Luxord smiled easily. "Luck's on meside, mate.

Axel: (as Luxord) Today I may finally get back me Lucky Charms!

Just as' Dem, here."

Demyx smiled weakly.

Zexion: (as Demyx) If anyone asks, I don’t know you.

"Have a couple'a more goes at the liquor, Dem. You look like the wratha God, ya' hear?"

"I hear you, brotha" said Demyx.

Roxas: (as Demyx) Though I barely understand ya.
Mog: *from notes* Nervous time!

His stress was slightly relieved when he saw a group of very pretty girls walk up to him.

Marluxia: (as Demyx) My heterosexuality has made me forget my current predicament.

"Hi," said one, looking slyly at him. "Aren't you, um, that singer-guy? Demyx?"

"Yep," he said, smiling.

"Oh my gawd! Nikki! Text Amy! Sorry, my friend just loves you and your music. Could you sign something for us, please?"

"Sure," said Demyx, grinning. Why oh why couldn't these bimbos see the fear in his eyes?

Lexaeus: If Demyx wants to be more popular, he should really stop insulting his few fans upon sight.

He picked up a napkin…

…and suddenly he had an idea. A brilliant idea.

Xion: (as Demyx) I’ll fashion the napkin into an airplane and fly to my own desert island! Away, trusted napkin!

He looked at the two cock-holstering agents, and saw they were talking to one another in whispers.

Terra: (as Goof) Okay, which spy novel tactic do you think he's going to use?
Roxas: (as Don) Writes an impossibly quick message on the napkin?
Terra: (as Goof) Pfft, he couldn't be daft enough to think we wouldn't notice.
Roxas: (as Don) Ten bucks says otherwise.
Terra: (as Goof) I raise you twenty.

No doubt plotting to take Luxord.

Terra: (as Goof) Wanna get in on the bet, Lux?
Axel: (as Luxord) Sure thing! I’m on Don’s side, I’m raising the pool to forty bucks.

Demyx grabbed another napkin and, Luxord watching him, he wrote down on one of the napkins.

Zexion: With his trusted invisible pen.

"Wait, no," he said, troubled. "That's not right. See?" He showed Luxord, who looked at it before Demyx crumpled it up and threw it into the trashcan behind the counter.

Larxene: Meanwhile, the girls are standing there wondering how this guy got so famous if he can’t even sign his own name without screwing it up.

He then worked on the other one, this time writing his signature. The girls thanked him and left, and Luxord stared at him through widening eyes. Demyx nodded and took another sip of his drink.
The first napkin had read, "They are not my agents. I am a hostage. Help."

Axel: (as Luxord) Gimme all yo cash, Goof!

"Wow," commented Sora as they entered the suite an hour later.

Larxene: (as Sora) That was one long-ass song, wasn’t it Kairi?
Xion: (as Kairi) My feet need to soak for days.

"Thanks so much for letting us stay here overnight, Mr. Luxord."

"Any time, mate, any time," said Luxord, beaming.

Marluxia: Thinking of how he’ll murder them in their sleep.
Terra: Why are they staying here? Yeah, both parties sort of have reasons for going through with this arrangement, but it doesn’t actually make much sense.

The room he had gotten for all of them was in one of the finest hotels in Las Vegas, with a splendid view over the entire city. Sora had been very impressed,

Lexaeus: But then again, we’ve been following Sora long enough to know he’s impressed by clothes flapping in the breeze.
Roxas: He’s still better than Ryan and his amazement at automatic doors.

even when he was outside in front of the place, where there had stood a great water fountain. They could even see it from this room's large windows.

Xion: *twitch*
Axel: What was that about?
Xion: I don’t know. I think it was another foreshadowing premonition. It’s happened before, but now I get the feeling we’ll find something funny about that fountain.

Don said to Luxord, "If you don't mind, sir, we want to stay in the room with Demyx. You never know what drunken maniac is going to come in."

Zexion: Vegas' finest hotels never had that magical invention of locked doors.

"Paranoid type, eh? That's a'ight," said Luxord, dismissing it with a wave of his hand. "I always knew Demyx liked to sleep with men."

Terra: Y’know, for a story that has few gay characters, it sure does like using homosexuality as the butt of terrible jokes.

"Fuck you, Lux," said Demyx, laughing. "And goodnight. We'll talk business in the morning. I think then we'll have the time."

"Hell yeah we'ill,"

Axel: Oh come on! He can’t even say the second W? Please, lecture room audience! Please tell me what accent this is supposed to be! It just sounds like the bastardization of all languages in general!

remarked Luxord. When the rock star and his two "bodyguards" had left to one of the rooms, he turned to Sora and Kairi and said, "You two look starved t'death. Want a bite t'eat 'fore bed?"

"Sure. Thank you," said Sora, a bit too enthusiastically.Kairi shot him a dark look,

Terra: (as Kairi) Grr, how dare you want sustenance!
Marluxia: I see they found the “Kairi’s Only Emotion” sticker. I was sure Amber had stolen it.

and he shrugged, uncomfortable.

Lexaeus: Wondering why his girlfriend was mad at him for wanting nourishment.

Luxord went to the fridge of the hotel room while his guests took a seat by the window, which was high above-ground.

Zexion: As previously established with the great view looking over the city. You don't tend to get those on the ground floor.

The sight was so beautiful to Sora, and he turned to look at Kairi staring down at it, how the lights reflected in her green eyes.


Roxas: You know the names of Xaldin’s spears, but you can’t get this basic fact right? I know it must be hard since only two other major characters share her face.

He reached his arm out and held her hand. She gave him a soft smile.

Even if they weren't officially dating and doing this in secret, it felt a lot like love.

Axel: He doesn’t even know her last name! Zexion had to come in and tell us that one!
Roxas: Heck, does he know anything about her? She never told him about her life in the Bronx, she just reminisced over those happy memories to herself. She’s never even told him what movies she likes, or anything that shows they’ve made an emotional connection.
Zexion: Perhaps "love" stands for "ludicrously obsessed vapid existence."

"What is it about you that I like so much?" asked Kairi, half-kidding.

Xion: I was just about to ask the same question. We at least can see that Sora is physically attracted to Kairi, and to be fair she is one of the only consistently nice people to him, but what does she get out of this relationship?
Roxas: *thinks* Well, you did miss this scene early on where she said he smelled nice.
Xion: ...I am suddenly so glad I missed several chapters.

"My good looks?" suggested Sora, smiling slyly. "My charm?"

Zexion: (as Sora) The way my presence doesn’t affect the plot as much as the story thinks it does?
Marluxia: (as Sora) The way my personality seems to switch to what is necessary for only that particular scene?
Larxene: (as Sora) The way I only fight for the forces of good because it's easier for me?

Suddenly serious, Kairi replied, "No…I think it's your courage.

Terra: When has he ever shown courage around you? This isn't meant to be a rhetorical question, I honestly want to know the answer.

That's something worth admiring."

Roxas: (as Kairi) You can fight me standing on one foot and with a paw behind your back. That’s impressive.

Sora blushed.

"I love you."

"I love you, too."

"Awww, how sweet.

Marluxia: And bland.

Too bad ye' won't be alive long enough to enjoy this moment," said Luxord.

Roxas: (as Sora) Aw, thank you Lux— wait.

Sora and Kairi turned to see Luxord holding a heavy pistol in his hand, pointing it right at Sora's head.

Larxene: HOLY CRAP, THE GUY THAT'S PART OF AN EVIL AND MURDEROUS CRIME GROUP TURNS OUT TO BE EVIL AND MURDEROUS! WHAT A SURPRISE!

His golden leer was hellish, would make even the Devil recoil in shock and fear.

Axel: (as Devil) Oh god, his mouth is so tacky!

Someone so happy-and-go-lucky should never have such an expression…and that's precisely why Luxord had it on.

Zexion: And the gold medal for most hollow and confusing description goes to...
Roxas: "The hotel flew into a frenzy"?
Zexion: *sigh* Fine, silver medal goes to the above sentence.

Trying to keep his cover,

Lexaeus: Cover of what?

Sora said, "What the-? What're you doing, man? Put that thing away!"

Marluxia: Sora exhibits his truly brilliant problem solving once again.

"Cut the shit, kiddo, it's done an' ova' with," said the gambler darkly. "You ain't Dem's agents, you work for someone else, and befo' I kill ye', I wanna know…who?"

Xion: (as Sora) I'm not telling!
Axel: (as Luxord) You know, there might be a chance I work for him too.
Xion: (as Sora) Why would Senator Mouse hire you?
Axel: (as Luxord) HA!

Sora stared into Luxord's eyes, those two oceans that chilled a clearly feverish mind.

Roxas: Bronze medal for worst description?

He pursed his lips, and said nothing. If this man was in alliance with Marla Shift, then giving away Mick's name would put the Senator in immediate danger.

If you don't tell him, he'll kill you! Sora's mind panicked, but he dismissed it. Kairi admired his courage…if he was to die, he would do it with honor and bravery, not snivel and cry to keep himself alive while his friends were killed by these evil men.

Terra: Sora squared his shoulders. He had made a decision. He would be brave for the princess. Even if (reader, could it be true?) there was no such thing as happily ever after.

"I will not tell you," said Sora.

Axel: (as Sora) I will, however, tell you that one of your teammates has already been given this information because I am Grade A Stupid.
Mog: *from notes* Goofy rushes in and there's a short scuffle before Kairi is grabbed.

Luxord stood, holding Kairi near the broken window, his lips pulled back into a snarl.

"You fuckas talk!" he demanded.

Axel: ENGLISH, MOTHERFUCKER, DO YOU SPEAK IT!

"Or I'll throw this ginger whore right out the fuckin' window! Who sent you?" Spittle flew from his mouth.

Xion: Hey, writers of the world! Do you need a quick bad guy for one scene? Then try the new… INSTA-VILLAIN! Why spend time creating a unique baddy when a sprinkle of our fine product can do the work for you? Have no fear because all flavours of the Insta-Villain are here! Do you need sexism? racism? homophobia? perhaps the classic school bully? We have exactly what you need for every writing occasion! So try INSTA-VILLAIN today! INSTA-VILLAIN! We work hard, so you don't have to! Warning: Does not guarantee a good scene. Side effects include rambling and/or pointless dialogue, unintentional laughter, possible amnesia of the event, and ooc if subject is currently in a fanfic. Overdose will result in immediate death or at least an indefinite hospital stay that removes subject from remainder of story.

Sora and Goofy, both bloodied and bruised, looked at each other. Both were men of war, and both saw the look of desperation in each other's eyes. Goofy wanted this man, and Sora wanted Kairi.

Marluxia: He doesn't want to save her, he just wants his property back.

It was a horrible situation,

Terra: I’d rather let Kairi be the judge of that right now.

and Sora realized that this man and his Organization would be the death of them all.

Axel: The blood-splattered walls of the hotel he thought were just the paper cut of them all.

They were the fools who tried first to tackle these powerful men, and now they were going to pay the ultimate price…

Wait. Luxord was doing something now…stumbling, perhaps? He looked dizzy, confused.

Xion: How C-O-N-V-E-N-I-E-N-T.
Mog: Oooh, you're tricky.

He burped and then gave a small retch.

Larxene: Are you kidding? He’s going to be done in by being drunk?

Kairi's foot hit the edge of the window frame. She looked down at the marvelous height and squealed.

Xion: (as Kairi) I can see Caeser’s Palace from here!

To reassure himself he still had a hostage, Luxord pulled her away a bit, enough to get her back onto the floor. He looked pale, sickly.

Marluxia: So when this writer sat down and planned out all the exciting ways they could have continued their grand tale, they decided a chapter full of anticlimactic events was what everyone wanted.
Larxene: One guy falls on his own knife, another guy is about to fall ass-over-tea-kettle out a window. Boy howdy, if the writers had to commit to anything their jobs might get challenging! Better publish nothing but easy solutions!
Axel: We're only the readers, why should we have any fun?

The gambler bent over instinctively and gave another retch. Immediately, Sora made a move forward, and Luxord saw it. Panicking, the gambler took a step back and fired, but the shot missed by a yard.

Roxas: If Sora got hurt, I might actually care about him. Just a thought.

Sora moved closer, and the horribly-drunk Luxord took another step back only to find that there was no floor there. The cruel gambler fell backwards, almost bringing Kairi with him if Sora hadn't been there to pull her away from the madman.

Axel: Wow, the Irishman died from being drunk. I don’t know if that’s stereotypically offensive or just embarrassing.

Holding each other, Kairi and Sora watched in horror as Luxord plummeted from his hotel room

Roxas: (as Luxord) TIIIIMBEEEERRR!
Marluxia: (as Luxord) I REGRET NOTHIIIINNNNGGG!
Xion: (as Luxord) OOPSYYYYYY!
Larxene: (as Luxord) REMEMBER WHEN I SAID I'D KILL YOU LAST I LIIIIEEED!
Terra: (as Luxord) CANNONBAAAAAALL!
Zexion: (as Luxord) I STILL DON'T KNOW WHAT MY ACCENT WAAASSS!
Axel: (as Luxord) THIS IS A REALLY STUPID DEAAAATH!
Lexaeus: And my personal favourite of all time: man falling off a cliff. (as Luxord) NOOOOOoooooooooo...

and down to his death within the very fountain Sora had admired as they entered this place.

Lexaeus: (as Luxord) Spleesh.

The man's overconfidence with a mixture of alcohol had caused his demise and that fatal step.

One could say he was very unlucky at that moment.

Marluxia: One could say all this buildup for a character to appear in only half a chapter was a complete let-down.
Zexion: Literally, he's been dropped from the story.

Don ran into the kitchen, his nose pouring blood, a cut above his left eyebrow.

"Where the hell were you?" cried Sora. "We could've used your help!"

"Demyx," said Don grimly. "Goofy and I saw Luxord pull the gun out on you guys, and Demyx grabbed me and started pummeling me. Looks like they planned to kill us somehow.

Axel: (as Don) And somehow we’re really surprised our sworn enemies tried to get the better of us. What terrible hosts they were, I'm glad one of them's dead.

I got the better of him, though, and he's tied up in the bedroom.

Larxene: Kinky.

Where is Luxord?"

"Dead," said Sora without a single shred of pity.

Zexion: You won’t understand what I mean when I say this but… audience, make a note.

Don frowned with confusion, then looked at the broken window and his mouth fell into a gape of horror.

"He…he fell?"

Roxas: (as Don) Aw dude, that’s not how you make a wish.

Sora nodded and said, "And we better get the Christly fuck out of here before the authorities show up.

Axel: Then you can just tell them you did fuck-all this entire story and leave.
Terra: They didn't even nudge Luxord to cause his death, that all happened with no input from our cast whatsoever.

We need to get back to Manhattan, before Demyx leads us into even more danger. We need to have someone to interrogate…Fuck, this sucks. We really needed as much info as we could get…"

Roxas: (as Sora) Ugh, my new life filled with death is mildly irritating.
Xion: I really want to see a version of this story with all the cursing replaced by silly words. We can substitute all the f-words with 'puppy'.

Goofy went to the kitchen table and tipped it over in a fury.

"SHIT!" he screamed, his face red.

Marluxia: He has the same understated reactions that Vexen does.
Mog: (as Goofy) (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

Kairi burst into tears. Sora held onto her.

Roxas: (as Sora) There there, it'll all be okay.
Xion: (as Kairi) BWAHAHAHA! *wiping away tears* Oh gosh, that was the funniest thing I've ever seen. He just fell! What a ridiculous death scene! And the best part is that I'm supposed to care! AH HA HA HA!

He was suddenly very afraid. Below this building, inside a water fountain, was Jackson Picard, member of Organization XIII, a bloody mess.

Larxene: (as little girl walking by) Look, mommy, a badfic character in the fountain.
Terra: (as mother) That's nice, dear. Don't point.
Larxene: (as little girl) But he's so silly!
Terra: (as mother) That's nice, dear. Keep walking.

And that would certainly anger the other twelve.

The lights of the city didn't seem so beautiful anymore. Nothing did.

Axel: (as Kairi) Thanks, a-hole.
Mog: *from notes* And with Luxord’s ends comes the end of the chapter called ‘Luxord’.
Lexaeus: Fitting.
[to be continued…]
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