thelectureroom: Mog! (Default)
[personal profile] thelectureroom
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: How does this story manage to keep getting worse?

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

23. More Complicated Than Originally Planned

Lexaeus: The Lecture Room summed up in one statement.

Day One:
6:30 AM

Axel: Man, I wish every chapter had started off like this.
Terra: So it was only half an hour that had passed. I still don’t think that would be rush hour.

Sora and Kairi stood next to each other. They had their fingers interlaced, trembling and reluctant to let go of the other. They both wore taunt frowns

Marluxia: That misplaced 'n' in 'taut' is also reluctant to let go.

as Mick handed them each a wad of money and a gun.

"It's important that you do exactly what I tell you to," Mick said solemnly. "It's almost over, I can feel it.

Roxas: Just four more chapters, just four! More! Chapters!

I have already called Riku and told him my plans.

Terra: (as Mick) He's off ignoring them as we speak.
Xion: (as Kairi) Good to know he's feeling like his old self.

Now, you two must complete this mission. I expect you to be safe and alert. Do you understand?"

Larxene: (as Sora) Yessir! So which button is the shooty one, again?

Sora and Kairi nodded in unison, though their grip on each other's hands tightened. Mick frowned deeper.

"Sora, you and Don will be heading to Delaware to find this Lexaeus person." Sora nodded and Don placed a hand on his shoulder.

Terra: Thing is along for the ride.

"I want you two to leave immediately and get there as fast as possible.

Axel: (as Sora) Got it. We'll drag our feet, stall like hell, and arrive there only when it is absolutely too late to solve any problems.
Roxas: (as Mick) That's not—
Axel: (as Sora) SAYONARA!

Once you find him, get whatever information you can force out of him, and then take him into custody if you can. If he shows any of the same hostility Demyx had, kill him.

Marluxia: Just because you failed to hold one measly hostage doesn't mean you're allowed to take it out on other people, Mick. Learn to deal with your anger.

Kairi and Goofy will try to find Demyx."

Sora gulped. There it was again, that feeling of disgust whenever killing for the common good was presented.

Zexion: Killing for the common bad was a lot easier.

But, he understood that the Organization that Lexaeus was a part of was evil. More evil than any conspiracy or mafia. They were real, not some shadow out of a children's book.

Roxas: Maybe because children’s books are actually good.

Demyx had proved that,

Axel: By being captured, beaten, dragged across the country, and blubbering the last time you saw him. Yeah, he's evil with a capital E.

and things were starting to mount on top of each other more, creating this teetering mountain of mayhem.

Xion: By the way, Mog, what does your pile of notes look like now?

And he was one of the few who were holding this mountain up.

All: *cheering for mountain* Crush him! Crush him! Crush him!

But why? He no longer had to stay tethered to Mick's cause. Mick had even stated himself that Sora didn't need to stay. He had found the monsters that had taken his parents, and found that he no longer had them.

Roxas: And I’m really hoping this is just him being gullible and believing anything he’s told some more, because if his mother died with no gravitas that would be the ultimate let-down of all this story’s let-downs.
Zexion: It was only our lead character’s one goal, why would we possibly want that plotline to continue when there are multiple love triangles with terrible people going on.

So why did he stay? To bring those monsters down, Sora thought angrily. To be with Kairi?

Lexaeus: I remember getting an answer to this question just last chapter. Granted, it was an uninteresting answer so that might explain why Sora has already forgotten.

It had to have been much bigger than that. Much bigger. It couldn't just be for personal justice. That wasn't enough. It had to be for the protection of the human race, and even that wasn't enough. Sora just felt this need to stop whatever devastation that wasn't here yet.

Roxas: YOU FAILED! Completely and utterly and didn’t-come-at-all-close-to-even-finding-a-clue-to-where-they-were failed to save your parents. The story may want to ignore what a useless excuse for a hero you are, but I sure won’t!
Axel: Speaking of excuses, gotta love the vague “I’ll just protect humanity instead” one. Because if you can’t save two people, seven billion will be a lot easier, right?
Mog: *from notes* Lovey love Kairi, she’s so pure and perfect!

Riku woke early that day to his phone ringing on the bedside table. Hayner had let him stay the night on the request of Aqua through Isa.

Axel: He just relay-raced couch surfing.

But, the phone call was Mick, and it troubled him.

Zexion: Oh look. Another sentence that manages to say nothing. How I miss the five second gap between them all.

Mick wanted Diz. Riku wasn't troubled with the simple request itself, but more the fact that he had been dreaming about it for the past couple of days. Diz was somewhere hiding in Florida because the lovely Sunshine State was not a part of Aqua's empire. Riku had distinct images of the signs in the area, nothing more. But, nevertheless, he dressed and headed to Mick's private airport to go to Miami. The Magic City.

Lexaeus: Why is this fic so fascinated with telling us a city’s nickname?

He wasn't sure why he had to get there so urgently.

Terra: Good to know I’m not the only confused by this 48 hours business.

Maybe it was because he had the same feeling of dread when he dwelled on Aqua as he did when he couldn't concentrate on anything but the formula that was still floating in his mind.

Xion: So if I’m following this subplot correctly, Riku has had a formula put into his mind from an alien device that everyone is after—
Axel: This isn’t Transformers 2.
Xion: I’m just saying that’s not a good comparison to constantly be accidentally reminding your audience of.

His conscious decision to go to Miami was because Aqua was there, but, maybe, his subconscious was telling him that he needed to prevent something from happening to her.

Roxas: Everyone has precognition in this story. Now Terra isn’t as special.

Mick met him outside a sleek jet in the hangar of his airport. He was standing with two men Riku hadn't seen before, and he instantly became defensive.

"Don't worry, Riku," Mick said, patting his shoulders. "They're with me. Detective Braig and Officer Everett. They're going to help me with a little mission of my own."

Xion: (as Mick) To get you caught up on their roles so far: Braig is trying to fool us into thinking he's one of the heroes, and Everett is the most amazing man that ever lived. Got it, good, let's move on.

Riku eyed them, but lowered his guard and cracked a smile.

"Do you think you know where Diz is hiding?" Mick asked. Braig leaned in a little, interested.

Riku frowned again. "I think I have an idea. But I don't want to talk about it. Not here."

Axel: Good, because none of us want to sit through another long discussion consisting of “We should go to Miami! We need to get to Miami! Let’s keep talking about it instead of heading to Miami.”
Zexion: But not good, because Riku continuously refuses to tell anyone what he knows about Diz.

Mick nodded. "I understand. Just be careful, okay? I think the danger has become much more obvious.

Roxas: (as Mick) Sort of. I’m still not feeling much is at stake in this story.

Don't trust anyone out there. You said you needed to get to Miami, right?"

Marluxia: Five hundred times.

Riku nodded and stepped onto the plane, bowing his head respectively.

Terra: To who?
Roxas: (as Riku) I must show my deeply rooted respect for the absolutely fascinating, layered, complex character of Everett.

He was going to be careful, and take care this itch that was plaguing the back of his mind. Acknowledge and move on.

Marluxia: Ignore problems until they eventually go away. That's some great coping skills there.

And it would be a few more hours until he made it to The Magic City, and to Aqua.

Larxene: Just in case you get bored, the fic has to promise the existence of boobies to keep your attention.

He had escaped.

Axel: From the story entirely?

Through all the harassment, torture, and interrogations, he had escaped, and the first thing he did was go back to Oblivion Labs.

Zexion: Yet another opportunity to expand on the world and explain how people enter and exit this location waved to us as it passed on by.

Marluxia briefly peered out of his room, but slammed the door as soon as he saw his visitor was Demyx. But, Demyx paid him no mind, he had to plan. He was going to kill his captors. All of them.

Roxas: Then sit down and work on that virus that you’ve already said would do it.

He rummaged through his belongings, throwing things across his room. The walls were a deep blue that was only matching by the color of the ocean itself.

Xion: It’s so nice of Xehanort to let his subordinates personalize their bedrooms.

There were no pictures,

Larxene: That would require him to have a family and friends that are willing to be seen with him.

but the drawers, cabinets and closet doors were bright, like the corals of his home beach.

Marluxia: We briefly leave the thoughts of murder and revenge behind for a lovely tour of Demyx’s decor.

The gentle sound of waves crashing on sand echoed off the walls and the distant calls of Seagulls made one feel as if the beach were right outside. However, Demyx's determination didn't match the calm room around him. In fact, describing the way he growled his threats and curses would be similar to describing the beginnings of a hurricane.

Roxas: Soccer balls that had been lost for months suddenly appeared in their owners’ backyards thanks to his vendetta.

Outwardly frustrated, but building into a force that would sweep everything in its path away.

Xion: Anger is the best custodian ever known.
Mog: *from notes* There's a short phone convo where Demyx asks to borrow some of Axel's explosives.

Axel hung up before Demyx could answer. He was sitting in the lobby of the very hotel Marluxia was going to die in. He was pouring over the blueprints for the building, and sipping a coffee.

Terra: Then the coffee poured all over the place and he ended up sipping the blueprints.

He had fastened himself a neat little lie and an inspector's uniform. When he displayed his fake ID badge, the hotel manager was more than happy—and a little terrified—to show Axel around the building. He pointed out every secret nook and hidden cranny that the hotel had, and gave him inside tips on how to escape quickly without being seen.

Roxas: (as Axel) Thanks man. Those cockroaches have it out for me.

And, now, Axel was sitting in the lobby, marking every place he was going to plant a block of C-4. All he could think about was murdering that pink motherfucker. He couldn't even entirely focus.

Lexaeus: You and the plot itself. As much as the story tries to make this new plot point sound engaging, it has nothing to do with aliens, global domination, or Sora's parents.

Xigbar had promised him a shitload of explosives, but he wasn't going to get the chance to leave New York City until he had all his plans in place. So, for now, he was stuck.

He had told Roxas that he couldn't stay in the Labs while Marluxia was there. So, Axel could relax a little bit about that.

Xion: Though he had to wonder how that idea had never occurred to Roxas.

Roxas wasn't at the Labs, he wasn't at the Labs, so there was no need to worry about bloodshed. At least not yet.

Marluxia: Much like breasts, the fic reminds you there will still be gore later. Those are the only two things it knows how to write.

"Is there anything else I can do for you, inspector?"

Axel looked up. The hotel manager was smiling falsely at him.

Zexion: Insincere amiability. Clearly he is the villain in this scenario.

"Yeah, I noticed that you had quite a bit of damage to your upper level ceilings. I saw mold in your ventilation system, and your gas lines are exposed in the kitchens."

The hotel manager's eyes widened. "This is not possible."

Axel nodded arrogantly. "Oh, yes it is. So, you'll have to shut down."


"No buts," Axel interrupted. "I want this place shut down in three days time, and I want the entire place lined in plastic."


Roxas: (as manager) Where am I going to get that much Glad wrap?

"Unless you'd prefer to line the whole place in Styrofoam."

The hotel manager frowned and tears welled in the corners of his eyes. "Of course."

Larxene: (as manager) *sniff* The kids will have to go without presents this Christmas, but they'll understand that it's for the good of the hotel. I'll tell them the man with the stupid hair said so.

Axel frowned slightly, feigning concern. "It'll only be for one day, I promise. Then, you'll never have to worry about this place again.

Roxas: (as manager) ...What was that?
Xion: (as Axel) What was what?
Roxas: (as manager) That snicker. That was a snicker, wasn't it?
Xion: (as Axel) Uhnononono it was, uh, mold. In my throat. From your cruddy hotel. …Cough cough.
Mog: *from notes* Axel goes outside.

The computer store had been vandalized, and Axel wanted to know what had been taken.

After all, Xehanort had been instructing him to watch this store for years.

Marluxia: Instead of walking in and taking the thing they wanted that was clearly marked for anyone to find.
Xion: Which brings up what I think is a very important question. If people aren’t supposed to know about the Keyblade’s existence, then who found it, labeled it, and put it in their store? Is the story like how Saika came to be in Anri’s possession, or is it just an unanswered question? I’d like to know.

Axel had studied the place for so long, he memorized its schedule, right down to the days maintenance would come and the days it would get deliveries. Though, one thing Axel noticed after a very short period of time, was that it was never open.

Zexion: (as Axel) I could have looked inside for myself, but that would have been sensible.

Axel ducked under the yellow CAUTION tape and stepped into the ruins of the destroyed store. He had pretended to be a cop so many times in his career that he had picked up a few skills along the way.

Terra: Like explaining to others why there was a police officer with spiky, bright-red hair. Heck, he was so good, even other officers believed he had been a part of their force for years.

But, even the most idiotic forensic scientist could tell that there had been a fight. Axel searched the floor and walls.

It looked like someone had come first, and spent quite a bit of time alone until two more people came in. It looked like two men fought, or at least two older teens fought, and a third person stood by, only to interrupt at the last minute.

Xion: Who are you, Francis York Morgan? How do you know that much from one quick glance around the room?
Larxene: *scowl* Why does the story feel the need to tell us that Axel knows what happened despite the fact we read what happened so we know what happened, so why should we care that Axel knows what happened?!

Then, the loser was taken out by a fourth person and the store hadn't been touched again until the police came to investigate.

Roxas: Maybe the police left sticky notes that Axel could read all this info off of.
Terra: Fic, please tell me why you forced us to read the same fight scene twice, and why you decided to make the second time even more dull and un-invested than the first.

Not a bad guess. Zexion would have been proud of his deductions.

Xion: Or suspected you of stealing ARI from Norman Jayden.

If only he didn't have his head up his ass all the time, Axel thought bitterly.

Zexion: He agrees with our hate. I’m not sure if I like that.
Mog: *from notes* He turns a computer on.

He frowned as black numbers drifted lazily on the screen and an otherworldly, high-pitched screech came from the front of the store.

Axel: Ah, the nostalgic hellish shriek that was dial-up.

Axel looked into the storefront and found blue lights displaying the same number as on the computer screen. He reached his hand into his pocket and pulled out his cell phone. He turned to an old TV and kicked it absently. It flickered on and a news broadcast greeted him with that morning's traffic report.

Roxas: (as TV) Hello and welcome to Convenience News. We will blather in the background until you need some drama to give the illusion this fic has a plotline.


"Ah, Axel!" Xehanort answered happily. "How are you this fine morning? Keeping busy, I hope."

Marluxia: Good lord, I somehow always manage to forget just how bad his dialogue is.

"'Fraid so, sir," Axel replied, laughing. "Listen, you know that computer store that's across the street from Marluxia's initiation? The one you had me watch?"


Xion: (as Xehanort) It was a splendid exercise in wasting your time, wasn't it?
Axel: (as self) What! You had me stare at this place for years for absolutely nothing?!
Xion: (as Xehanort) Honestly, you should have figured something was wrong after a few weeks. Really, a store that is never open and you didn't figure out I was wasting your life away? For shame, Axel.

"And you remember when you showed me your notes from the eighties research project?" Axel asked. "The ones you nearly had a heart attack over?"


Marluxia: (as Xehanort) My goodness, some of those hairstyles still make my heart shudder.
Larxene: (as Xehanort) The bangs. The bangs!

Axel stared at the numbers. "I think I found it. Or at least part of it."

Xehanort didn't speak for a long time. Axel was waiting for the burst of joy—as Superior was expected to display—but it never came. There was only silence.

Axel: Thank god. I downright hate his character voice by now.

"Well, I'll take the thing to Vexen," Axel whispered. "If you're still there."

Axel hung up the phone and turned back to the TV after gathering the strange star-like devices from the corners of the room.

Xion: (as Xehanort) Oh, sorry. I had to finish my pancakes, and chocolate-chip-blueberry is sooo hard to get right. What was that you were saying Axel? Axel? Axel?

The woman on the news was smiling as if she was relieved, and the old speakers exuded this hopeful music.

Ryan Hall was rushed to the hospital after getting hit by a speeding driver earlier this morning.

Axel: (as newswoman) Celebrations will be this afternoon! His funeral will be held inside a circus tent! A new holiday has already been declared! Happy Ryan Hall is fatally wounded day! Come commemorate the death of the most annoying character has ever known!
Marluxia: Several other people died horrible deaths, but they're not main characters so why bother talking about them.

He has been escorted to Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan and is currently in critical condition. Ryan's parents were found dead…

Roxas: *krchKCH* Plot breaking up—can't—logic—no *KCHH*
Lexaeus: By the by, critical condition or not, he’s still a minor and his parents obviously aren’t around to release his name, which begs the question on not only who said they could release this information but how they got this information at all.
Zexion: Maybe he had a name tag on him. That mentioned his somehow deceased parents.
Mog: *from notes* So Axel rushes off to save his buddy from the evils of the hospital. Now we’re hanging out with Isa and Aqua, as she’s still getting over that drug attack from last chapter.

Isa sat back down next to her and pulled her into his arms. He nuzzled her head and sniffed her hair. It smelled like coconuts and chocolate, and he laughed as quietly as he could.

Aqua chuckled. "What's so funny?"

Isa couldn't beat away that feeling of nostalgia that began to rise in his chest. That nostalgia of the their days in New York before Aqua became such a hardened gangster.

Zexion: Those blissful days when she was selling her body and clearly didn't like it. Such bounty we let slip through our fingers.

"You smell like an Almond Joy."

Aqua looked at him, confused. "That's not funny."

Terra: Aside from the obligatory mention of "Nothing is ever funny", let's discuss something: these two are the best couple so far. The characters themselves are both irreversible annoying brats, yes, but together they make an interesting relationship. They're not perfect, they're not sugary sweet, they argue. But they also have a history that they both miss, they talk to one another, they look out for one another, and actually relate to each other. Compare that to Lily and Ryan, who we know nothing about. Or Namine and Cloud, who are portrayed as too perfect. Or Kairi and Sora, who we've gone on at length keep confusing lust for love. Or Jesse and Max, who had so little screen time I'm sure most people only remember them as "that gay couple." Aqua and Isa have an intentionally flawed relationship, therefore they have the most complex relationship. I admit the fic barely does a competent job at showing the different sides of these two, but you nitpick a story for so long you eventually have to point out when it does something almost right.
Mog: *from notes* They have a romantic moment.

Kairi and Goofy had spent most of their time moving from subway to subway, hoping to run into Demyx somewhere in the belly of the city.

Roxas: Oh my gosh, it's a scene where Kairi is away from Sora! Maybe she'll finally be allowed to do verbs again!
Xion: Run, girl! Run into the glorious sunlight of freedom!

They figured that he would try to lay low for a little while, and the underground was the best place to hide from kidnappers.

Terra: Instead of the Org.'s headquarters that you could be searching for instead, because you still don't know where it is.

Goofy stayed close to Kairi, making sure to not let her out of his sight for a moment. He had promised Sora that he would stay extra close to her.

Larxene: (as Sora) Please, Goof, keep the love of my life safe. And shove her off the page as soon as you see her trying to interact with the story. It's for her own good, I swear.
Marluxia: (as Goofy) Anything for you, kid who has accomplished nothing.

"How are we going to take him quietly?" Kairi asked. "There are so many people, and he is not going to go without putting up a fight."

Xion: Is that the reason why he wrecked up the room before escaping?
Axel: (as Demyx) Even I know I can’t go without putting up a fight, time to wrestle the furniture!

Goofy frowned. "I'm not sure, but we'll get to that when we actually find him. If push comes to shove, I'll restrain him, and get arrested for firing a gun in a public place."

Kairi nodded solemnly. "I hope it doesn't come to that."

"Me. Too."

Roxas: (as Goof) Sorry, but I swallowed a period halfway through that sentence. *gag* Ugh, it tastes nasty.

They sat on the subway, listening on any conversation they could catch over the roar of the train's horns echoing in the tunnels.

Larxene: People-watching! Just what I love to read about! Maybe next they'll go trainspotting or collect stamps!

So far, the only thing they could find was what Mick had put out there. "Demyx" had been released from the hospital in perfect health. And not much more than that.

Axel: *claps hands together* Alright everyone, there’s a lot of stupid to cover, where shall we start?
Lexaeus: The fact that the public conveniently never questions or looks into what happened, or even complains about refunding their concert tickets.
Roxas: Or point out what a stupid idea it was for Mick to let the double go. Demyx will still be missing, so soon there will be questions over where he is and this might put Mick's entire operation under suspicion.
Terra: It would be simpler and smarter to continue the hospital lie.
Xion: Also, something we should have questioned before now… Why is a senator in charge of a singer’s press?

As Goofy and Kairi stepped off their last train for the morning, Kairi bumped into a man who seemed to be a rush. He had dyed red hair, and he looked panicked and scared.

"Sorry," he mumbled.

Kairi turned on her heels as the door closed and the departure bell rang. He looked vaguely familiar.

"Lea!" She cried.


Axel frowned. The train pulled away, and he cursed under his breath. He had recognized her as well, but he tried to pass of her exclamation with a look of confusion. He wasn't sure how well it worked, but he really didn't care about it too much. He was much more concerned with Roxas.

Zexion: The POV slammed itself into Axel's head for a moment so we could be told how he's feeling instead of thinking for ourselves.

"Who's Lea?" Goofy asked after the roar of the train died down.

Marluxia: An idiot.

Kairi shook her head. "Nobody.

Xion: I see what you did there.

I thought I recognized someone I knew. I guess it wasn't him."

Roxas: (as Kairi) So I’m really glad we had such an important moment.
Mog: *from notes* Enough of that scene, time for someone else!

Vexen was staring at The Womb as Dusk moved about inside.

Xion: (as Vexen) Who's a widdle baby? Are you a widdle baby? Yesh you are! Yesh you are my widdle bay-bay cutey-patooty—
Axel: (as Marluxia walking in) ...What are you doing?
Xion: (as Vexen) SCIENCE! This is terminology your feeble mind cannot understand!
Axel: (as Marluxia) Was all that spit on the tank from you kissing it?
Xion: (as Vexen) NO! Now go away and leave me to my science!

It was growing at an exponential rate again, and it had started communicating.

Marluxia: It was quite the snarky little abomination of nature so far, constantly mocking its caretakers’ lousy plans.

At first, it had only made minute hand gestures,

Xion: It had worked its way up to hour hand gestures by now.

but it had started to make sounds. Mostly clicks and hisses, but it would react to things Vexen asked.

And Vexen had been halfway through a psychology textbook when Demyx burst into his lab, huffing angrily.

"For the love of God," Vexen cried, snapping his book shut. "What is it?"

Terra: (as Vexen) I was just teaching my baby about psychology! *looks at tank with paternal pride* I’ve named her Hanna, do you think she’ll like the name?

Dusk shuddered in The Womb and clicked in protest. Vexen placed his hand on the glass, and Dusk moved closer to the small patch of warmth, though he was still restrained in movement. Demyx stared at Dusk, completely disgusted by the creature floating in the fluid.

Axel: (as Dusk) Hey, you're no looker yourself, bub.

But, he ignored that feeling and spoke to Vexen heatedly.

"I need to kill someone," Demyx said.

Vexen looked up, his anger evaporating.

Xion: (as Vexen) Petty vengeance? You should have said so sooner, my friend. Now I'll happily help you!

"I thought Xehanort wanted people to live now. The Virus is almost ready."

Demyx crossed his arms. "But, he only wants people to who aren't a danger to the Organization. These people must die."

Larxene: (as Demyx) I don’t want to kill for my job, I only murder for personal spite.

Vexen thought for a moment before he spoke. He seemed to be searching his mind.

Lexaeus: Both of those sentences mean the same thing. I don't have to be told twice that he's thinking.
Zexion: Does anyone remember how, in Part Two, I said the writing reads like the authors couldn't decide which description to go with so they wrote all of them? Can I just loop that line for several hours and leave the room?

"You know I only specialize in certain kinds of weapons, Demyx. If you want them to just die, why not ask Axel to blow them to Hell? He'd be more than happy to."

Roxas: Have we all forgotten we have a trained sniper in our ranks? His job on the Senator failed, give Xigbar something to do.
Mog: *from notes* They go into a side room.

"I was one of the six founding members, you know," Vexen explained proudly. "For a long time, Xehanort had me create weapons that would blow the minds of today's top scientists."

Larxene: (as top scientists) Wow. I thought I'd seen stupid before now, but you just blew my mind on how stupid someone can truly be.

Demyx nodded in false interest. He wasn't really interested in Vexen's stories.

Lexaeus: Hence the false interest.
Zexion: I'm honestly considering that audio loop idea.

He just wanted a weapon that could kill in the most painful way imaginable.

Marluxia: This fic has an excruciating way of killing brain cells.
Mog: *from notes* Vexen has a gift for Demyx! It's a guitar that fits Demyx's original water theme by getting rid of water!
Zexion: It is so hard to tell if you're sarcastic when you say these things.
Terra: Mog is not sarcastic. Mog is Mog.

"I've named it Arpeggio," Vexen said after the water in the glass evaporated with an audible hiss. "For the sole reason that I've found that it works best when mimicking the sounds produced by arpeggios."

Roxas: (as Demyx) ...
Xion: (as Vexen) Oh no.
Roxas: (as Demyx) *breathes in*
Xion: (as Vexen) Don't you dare—!

"That's amazing, Vexen," Demyx breathed.

"Yes, well, you should really pay more attention to what it is I do, Demyx," Vexen said, chuckling under his breath.

Axel: (as Demyx) *thinks* Jack shit?
Terra: (as Vexen) *whispers to Dusk* Don't listen to the mean man, Hanna, Daddy's a genius.

"Then you wouldn't be so amazed all the time. This is pretty standard for me."

Zexion: (as Vexen) I've made quite the hobby of creating tenuous strings to canon. It is quite fun.

Demyx picked up the strings and weighed them. Vexen handed him a pair of black and silver gloves.

"What are these?"

Xion: (as Vexen) Fashionable!

Vexen smiled. "These will protect your fingers. Arpeggio is fine to use for short periods of time, but prolonged use can damage the nerves in the fingers. These gloves protect your nerves and deflect the sound waves away from your body."

Roxas: *throws hands up in defeat* Cuz... science, I guess!

Demyx took the gloves and put them on. Sharp needles buried themselves in his finger tips and water trickled in his veins.

Lexaeus: Millions upon millions of red blood cells burst from the hypotonic solution.

"What the fuck is this?" Demyx cried.

"Well, if you paid attention to what I said after I explained how the thing works, you would have known this was going to happen."

Terra: (as Demyx) You just said it would protect my fingertips, not plunge needles into them!

Demyx yelped and tried to peel the gloves from his hands, but Vexen forced his hands down savagely.

"Are you bloody mad, nine?" Vexen smoothed the material back onto Demyx's hands. "Please, do not handicap yourself in panic. It's quite alright."

Axel: (as Vexen) It's science I pulled right out of my butt, you'll be fine.

Demyx breathed sporadically. "It feels like's it's crawling in my skin!"

Xion: You could say his wound won't heal, fear's how he falls, and he confuses what's real.

"You'll be fine," Vexen said. "It's magnificent isn't it?"

Demyx frowned as the material permanently attached to his skin.

Zexion: Can we ban this fic from using the word 'frowned'? By this point it's both an overused and underwhelming word.

It began to itch and burn as his flesh turned black and silver and his fingernails hardened to steel. He flexed his fingers excitedly.

Lexaeus: By the way, why hasn't Vexen pointed out that black alien paint that was supposed to have "permanently" melded into Demyx's skin?
Xion: Silly you, that was in a different chapter so it doesn't matter anymore.

"It's the same technology I used for this." He held up his icy blue gauntlet. "I call it Frozen Pride.

Larxene: (as Demyx) Is that why you had to make a fake baby for yourself?
Axel: (as Vexen) I can still rip those gloves off your hands!
Larxene: (as Demyx) It's not my fault your plumbing doesn't work.

Arpeggio is only slightly more primitive in design and simple in construct. But, don't let it get to your head."

Demyx looked up.

Roxas: (as Vexen) For the fifteenth time, you cannot see your own head.
Axel: (as Demyx) One of these days, man! One of these days!

"You may begin to feel a strange new confidence rise within you, nine." Vexen guided Demyx back into his lab and stood in front of The Womb. "It'll be a small price to pay for the freedom from the limitations of the flesh."

Demyx bowed his head. "Thank you, superior."

"There is no need to be so formal, Demyx," Vexen replied.

Terra: (as Vexen) Call me "senpai".

He tapped the glass and Dusk moved around.

Roxas: (as Dusk) AAAAHH! Don't do that! Have you never watched Finding Nemo!

"This is what it means to be super human."

Axel: (as Dusk) Super human, my ass. Let's see how much you like it when I'm banging a hammer against your eardrums!

Demyx paused and left the room without a word. Vexen sat back in his chair, pulled out the book he had been reading earlier, and smiled as he read.

"The human mind is the third most powerful force in the universe, the second being gravity, and the first being the sun…"

Xion: Aww, Mommy Zexion gave baby his favourite book to read.
Marluxia: She’ll be a pretentious brat before the year is up.

8:00 AM

Lenox Hill Hospital was located between 23rd and 24th Street in Manhattan. About thirty blocks from Times Square, and about fifteen blocks from the computer store.

Axel: Thanks, Google Maps.

It wasn't that far a distance, but for Axel, that was far too long a distance to travel. He was sitting in the waiting room for a long time, trying to figure out how he was going to get Roxas out without arising suspicion. He could have simply blown it out, but Xehanort had been clear to leave the innocent alone.

Zexion: And yet you’ve been bothering the innocent this entire story. Why care now?
Larxene: I like that blowing up a hospital is “not raising suspicion”. As if even the whole city of New York is as bored with this fic’s predictable patterns as we are.

Axel frowned.

Zexion: That one verb is really starting to aggravate me.


Axel stood up and leaned over the front desk. The woman behind it looked over red horn-rimmed glasses and arched an eyebrow.

"What's wrong, sweetheart?"

Roxas: Oh, lots of things. Ambulance rides across town can cost as much as plane tickets, you can spend a 'cheap' 11k a year for your insurance and have doctors refuse it because they don't accept your provider, and so many people get into life-crippling debt because of medical bills. It's like we're punishing people for daring to get sick. And don't even get me started on gender bias in the medical community because—
Axel: Shut up with your real world concerns, they're not glamorous enough to talk about here.
Roxas: Right, I was almost realistic for a sec. Should've known better.

Axel clutched his side. "I have a stitch in my chest." That was partially true; he had been running a lot. "It's been there for weeks." That was a lie.

Marluxia: Once again, the story hates its audience so much that it tells them what they already know.

The woman coughed and immediately scrubbed her hands with sanitizer.

Axel: (as woman) I swallowed the Purell pack a few weeks ago, but I've found a way to work around it!

"Okay, fill this out and have a seat. I'll get to you shortly, hon."

Axel took the paper and sat back down. He didn't have time to wait for a bed, even though he was lying to get one. He had to get to Roxas before something bad happened. Axel looked around and found a cleaning cart parked outside of a bathroom.

Xion: (as Axel) Perfect! I'll sneak into the laundry and then climb up the chute into Roxas' room!

"It must be my lucky day," Axel muttered to himself as he put on a bloodstained lab coat

Lexaeus: The perfect item to leave lying around a hospital.

and pushed the cart into an elevator.

Roxas: (as a person in elevator) AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!
Axel: (as self) Hi, can I dress up as a serial killer and wander around the hospital? I promise to not scare too many patients half to death.
Mog: *from notes* Axel insults a nurse because why not?

The sign said "ICU", and it was quiet despite the pandemonium downstairs.

Zexion: Yes, all that pandemonium we heard about, like sitting in chairs and filling in insurance forms. What zaniness!

Axel shed the bloodstained lab coat in exchange for clean nurse scrubs.

Marluxia: Which he easily could have done before, but the fic goes into panic attacks whenever it can't mention bodily fluids.
Mog: *from notes* So Axel sees the dreariest room in the hall and knows its Roxie’s. Mick and Braig walk out saying they’ll arrest the boy later.

He skirted into Roxas's room and sat at the foot of the bed. He overcome with a sadness he had never felt before. It crushed what little metaphorical heart he had left and squeezed his lungs. It was a minute before Axel realized that he was crying.

Lexaeus: While I applaud the fic for attempting emotion, we have no idea what Roxas looks like. Now would be a perfectly good time to describe the extent of his injuries so we could know what is even going on.
Larxene: For all we know, Axel is crying over a zit on Roxas' nose.

He wiped his tears away and carefully unhooked Roxas from his heart monitor.

Xion: (as machinery) BEEEEEEEEEEEP!
Zexion: Nurses come running in to reconnect the wires and Axel realizes how dumb he is.

He hoisted Roxas onto his back and made his way to the emergency stairs.

Roxas: (as his spine) Kch-krch-crack!-snap!-break!
Axel: Yeah, move him around a lot. He probably doesn’t have many broken bones.

He didn't want anyone to see him kidnapping a patient who was wanted by a Senator and he figured it would be faster to go the back way anyway.

Terra: So is there just no security in this hospital at all? Not even a few nurses to stop and question him?
Zexion: Well, someone let him into ICU even though he was wearing a blood-stained jacket, which I’m sure could be considered a biohazard, so I’m going to assume this hospital is terrible.
Marluxia: They must be thankful for all the crazy terrorism going on, it stops them from being shut-down from investigations.

But, on the ground floor, just on the outside of the stairwell, sat a tiny church.

Larxene: (as Axel) I haven't bashed religion in ages! You stay here, Roxas, I'm off to make a shallow point!
Mog: *from notes* So Axel tells a priest about his backstory. He had a big family that he made go boom. He found himself, that boom.

Axel heard sounds of cell phone keys. He pulled out a gun and shot the Father through the small mesh screen.

Terra: (as Father) I was just ordering a pizza!
Roxas: (as Axel) Oops. Urr, forgive me for I have sinned?
Terra: (as Father) You're paying for that pizza, you know.
Lexaeus: At least he’s in a hospital.

The other patrons of the church screamed, and Axel picked Roxas up and headed back to Oblivion Labs.

Xion: (as Axel) POINTLESSNESS AWAAAY! *ka-pwing!*
Zexion: Once again… Didn’t want to raise suspicion. Shot a priest. If the characters are going to do something ludicrous can they at the very least not point it out beforehand?

As he left the hospital, he crossed his heart.

"For the Father, the Son, and The Holy Spirit..."

Marluxia: (as Father) We don't want any.
Larxene: (as Son) Get a haircut, hippie.
Axel: (as Holy Spirit) Y'all need Jesus!

Roxas cracked an eye open and groaned softly.

Terra: (as Roxas) Ugh, not the religious thing again. Ienzo failed the first time, what makes you think a second time would be any different?

The early morning usually brought with it a pleasant breeze and merry sunshine,

Terra: good stories.

but, for Diz, this morning was eerily calm.

Xion: Then again, he was sitting in a vacuum.

He had expected to wake up to a nice long report about how Aqua's empire was being deconstructed by his employees, but instead, he received letters of resignation and reports of death.

Roxas: (as Diz) Andy, you handed me your own death report in person.
Axel: (as Andy) What? You never know! Boy scouts taught me to always be prepared so I'm prepared to GTFO.

Apparently Aqua had sent out a KOS. His disciples were dropping like flies.

Terra: Why? You blew up the Washington Monument. You basically threw up your middle finger to the entire country, but now the fic's telling us you're losing. Why is this happening?
Marluxia: I think the real question is, "Why should anyone care?"

And he was hiding in a suburb in Florida.

Zexion: To be a serious for a moment— sorry, but the comedy is running dry by this point— it is considered weak writing to use the verb "was" constantly. A much stronger verb would suffice, and maybe even a sentence that didn't begin with a conjunction. For example: "All this happened as he hid in a Floridian suburb." Lovely, isn't it?

Diz stared at his email messages for a long time before he roared so loudly it alarmed the neighbors outside. He was going to have to do something, and do it fast.

Xion: Like get a lozenge for his poor throat.

He couldn't allow Aqua to win. Not after everything he had given up in order to go into hiding the way he did. He sacrificed his freedom to hide from the imminent chaos that would ensue from declaring all out war on a crime lord of Aqua's status.

Axel: (as Diz) I ran like a coward and now people are taking advantage of it, what the hell!

He flipped his old television set on and stared at that morning's news broadcast. The woman on the screen was smiling and laughing as the meteorologist gave his forecast for the next few days. Cold and windy.

Roxas: (as newswoman) Now you’ll all be as miserable as I am! Mwahaha!

But, the segment that caught his eye was the report about all the Heartless that had been killed.

Terra: Then turn them into robots. You already did that once and even said it was “easily done”, what’s stopping you from having a never-ending supply of cyborg minions?

The woman showed no remorse, and rushed through the segment, purposely leaving out details, and making snide comments about the Heartless.

Marluxia: How dare people poke fun at criminals.
Larxene: Yeah, they should really consider the murderers’ feelings.

And Diz fumed as he realized his gang's former glory was being diminished by public figures.

Axel: At least the plot didn’t throw up on you again. When did all these deaths happen?

Diz grew murderous almost instantly, and rushed about his house gathering supplies. He was going to have to go to Miami and kill Aqua.

Roxas: I… I just can’t with this story anymore. It has rendered me unable to “can”. All this story is is “People we don’t know die, someone we sort of know wants to kill someone else we barely know, rinse and repeat.” The only reason it isn’t mind-numbingly boring is because it’s frustrating just how boring it actually is!

There was no other way he was going to be able to secure his hold over the United States' cyberspace until that bitch was gone. He had remembered Moloch telling him that Miami was the last place where he saw her.

He packed up a camera,

Lexaeus: It was a belated birthday gift to Moloch.
Xion: Ironically, he died “off-camera”. Seriously, Xigbar just shot him over the phone, that was all that character was good for, you didn’t miss much.

a few wires, his personal laptop, and hopped in his car. He was going to kill Aqua if it was the last thing he would ever do. But, first, he had to get guns. Powerful guns, and set up a little stage for him to display Aqua to the world.

It was about time America knew who "Someone" was.

9:30 AM

Isa sat away from the bed, staring out the small window. Miami was busy already.

Axel: Because some people have this magic thing called WORK that they do. Give it a try sometime.

The trees were rustling in a strong breeze. Isa frowned. It was too beautiful for words, and he desperately wanted to crawl back into bed with Aqua. He didn't want to go back to New York.

His phone rang. It was sitting on the bedside table, and it moved across the faux wood as it vibrated.

Roxas: What is with this fic describing wood?! Are we supposed to knock on it for good luck?

He picked up the phone and glanced at the caller ID. It was Hayner, and he dropped the phone on the floor. He didn't feel like answering it. To answer the phone meant to answer the call of his criminal lifestyle.

Xion: (as Aqua) Isa, why is your phone smashed onto the floor?
Terra: (as Isa) To answer the phone is to answer the criminal lifestyle!
Xion: (as Aqua) ...Or answering the phone means answering the phone.
Terra: (as Isa) *sulk* This is why I don't invite you to my poetry beats.
Mog: *from notes* Aqua and Isa get ready to leave.

"We could stay here if you like," Isa said. "Just you and me. We could stay here, and forget about New York."

"You know that's an impossibility," Aqua muttered. She moved past him.

"Maybe not so impossible?" Isa replied.

Roxas: (as Isa) Nothing’s impossible! Things are only impassable!

"I could make a few calls. Then we could live here. Or go to California. Or somewhere far away. What do you say?"

Aqua shook her head. "Let's just get to the airport. I want to go home."

Isa handed her the poorly brewed coffee, and walked behind her.

Terra: I’m standing by my ‘only good couple’ statement until the fic adds in something else remotely happy.

They hailed a taxi, and when the cab pulled up, Aqua stopped Isa.

"You're not coming with me."

Xion: I'm sorry, Terra, but you talked about how you liked part of this story so now you can never have it again.
Terra: I brought the disappointment on myself, really.

Isa took a step back, instantly becoming abrasive. "What the fuck are you talking about? You can't go alone."

"You have overstepped that line," Aqua said simply, without emotion.

Roxas: I knew it! She's been an automaton this entire time!

"We can't work together now. I fucked up. And I will not allow you get in my way."

"You don't have to be like that!" Isa blurted as inconspicuously as he could. "You act like you didn't let Riku do the exact same thing."

"I suppose we could pretend this never happened. But I don't need you anymore." Aqua frowned.

Zexion: Are these two even in the same conversation? Aqua’s replies don’t make any sense.

"You can't just leave," Isa said. "Xaldin will come after you. I can't leave you."

Larxene: Geez, Isa, take a hint. You’re like the dog that won’t leave until the little crying boy starts throwing sticks to make you go.

"Well, then, allow me to clear things up for you." Aqua looked around the bouncy city.

Axel: Little known fact, Miami is actually a giant inflatable bounce-castle.

She didn't want to leave Miami, but Miami was not her place. She had to stay in New York.

Roxas: Because Miami dared to have positive adjectives used. Back to super realistic NYC we go!

"The Heartless Lover has been taken care of—"

Lexaeus: We honestly don’t know who that character is so we can't make a joke.
Mog: *from notes* The two have a break-up and then we follow Isa around the airport for a short time.

As he passed one of the boarding gates, he noticed the televisions mounted on the walls were starting to flicker more often. He ignored it at first, but the strange images were starting to draw his attention more obviously. Some of the people in the airport began pointing at the screens, whispering to each other.

Xion: (as people) Someone needs to fiddle with the rabbit ears.
Axel: (as people) Thump the top of the TV!

The Heartless insignia: The black and read heart.

Zexion: Just in case readers forgot what that looked like, since any connection to canon died a painful death a long time ago.
Lexaeus: It died right alongside Ven.

Isa froze. Was this going to be another attack?

"Good morning, citizens of America."

Isa recognized the voice. It was the same one that had warned America of its disrespect to the Heartless, but the sound of his voice now held very different intentions. It sounded murderous and sly.

Roxas: (as Diz) Yes, bow before me, puny mortals because— because... *voice breaks* Because I'm secretly very lonely. Pwease pay attention to me?

"I think it might be time to learn the truth about the world."


The screen flickered and grew snowy. Sounds of things shuffling around echoed in the otherwise quiet terminal. The people had fallen completely silent. The image flickered again, and Diz was smiling at the screen.

Terra: (as Diz) *huge smile* Whatever you just saw was totally intentional and obviously not technical difficulties. I mean, obviously.

He looked hellish, eyes red from drug use, teeth yellowed from age. He was crazy.

Roxas: I see a man in the back, as a matter of fact his eyes are as red as the sun.
Axel: Next thing you know he'll tell everyone to attack and we'll have a ballroom blitz on our hands.

"You have commonly heard on the news that 'Someone' has been behind many criminal rings.

Marluxia: (as person) *raises hand* I haven't. Does that mean I can change the channel?

Drugs, prostitution, weapons. All because of 'Someone'. Well, I think it's time you know who this 'Someone' is. It's time you have seen their face, familiarized yourself with their appearance."

Larxene: (as everyone in terminal) Boo! You’re boring! Tell a joke! Get off the screen!

Isa growled under his breath. Aqua was in danger, and somewhere in this airport, she was being toyed with.

Zexion: You can’t be serious…

He ran through the halls, pushing people out of the way. An airport worker tried to stop him, but Isa pulled out his gun and shoved it in his mouth.

"You tell me where they are!" Isa screamed.

Axel: I wish text could get across the Batman reference we’d like to put here.

The man shuddered. Isa turned his head to the side and jabbed his thumb at the small red and black Heartless brand mark. The man cried out, but the cold taste of metal was blocking his voice.

"Where are they?"

The man pointed to a door.

Zexion: No, no, I refuse to believe the story is going this way.

As soon as Isa pulled the gun from the man's mouth, he man broke down in hysterical tears.

Xion: You made the master of the universe cry, you jerk.

Isa crashed into the door, and barreled down the hallway. Diz's voice came through the PA system, his tone manic. He was obviously trying to expose Aqua to the world, but Isa just could not let that happen. Otherwise, his whole reason for existence would have been a failure.

Lexaeus: Aqua’s life is in danger, but let us not forget that if she died Isa would feel sad. We should care more about him in this predicament.

He came to a private hangar where plane parts and tools were strewn across the floor. Isa stopped in the doorway. He could see Diz across from him, speaking to a camera that was hooked up to his laptop.

Zexion: He’s in the airport doing this? No wonder he was found so quickly, this is a horrible plan with a dozen holes in it.

Aqua was tied to a metal chair behind him.

Terra: (as Aqua) Of all the times to practice my magic tricks...

A large screen was separating her from the camera's view. Even from such a far distance, Isa could see she was fighting Diz.

Roxas: (as Diz) Don't. Move. Maybe he doesn't see us.

Isa thought for a moment before cocking his gun and stepping out, but a hand grabbed him from behind. In a panic, he fired, and the bullet ricocheted around the hangar, alerting Diz to their presence.

All: *sarcastic applause*

Isa roared and spun around, fully intending on shooting the fucker in the face. But, Riku pushed his hand up.


Axel: (as Riku) Sup. I enjoyed my vacation from the story.

Riku pulled Isa out into the open, where Diz shot at them. Isa punched Riku in the face.

All: *sincere applause*

"You motherfucker!" He cried. "I can't believe you would have the nerve to show your fucking face to me!"

Roxas: (as Riku) Weird, I thought using you as a meat shield would be your bigger concern.

"Quiet!" Diz yelled.

Axel: (as Diz) Friggin-flangin' kids! Stop with all your cussing and let me play on my computer!

He shot at them again, and it caught Isa in the leg. Isa fell to his knees, howling in pain.

"You motherfucker!"

"I said shut the fuck up!"

Zexion: (as Isa) Then don't shoot me in the leg, you idiot! What did you expect to happen, the bullet would travel up my femoral artery and lodge itself into my vocal chords?

Isa and Riku looked at Diz. Diz came closer to them, panting heavily. He motioned to Riku.

"Step back, boy."

Riku obeyed and took a step back.

Roxas: Take it back now, y'all! One hop this time!

Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Aqua trying to untie herself. She was gagged, and didn't make much noise besides an occasional angry groan.

Xion: (as Aqua) Crud, Houdini made it look so easy. Okay, the bunny goes around the tree...

Riku looked back at Diz.

"What do you want?" he asked.

"I want this little cunt to be exposed!" Diz spat. "If the whole world knows who she is, then I can still keep my empire."

Marluxia: (as Diz) That's failing for some unfathomable reason, but we'll talk about that later.

Riku mumbled something under his breath. Diz pointed his gun at Riku, then at Isa.

"I'm sick of waiting for everything, Riku." Diz giggled.

Roxas: Diz was secretly on OUR side the entire time!

"You see, I've spent my whole life trying to claim the world. And I almost did it, too!

Axel: (as Diz) If it wasn't for those pesky meddling kids!

Then the Internet came along

Terra: (as Diz) —and I've been distracted by LOLcats ever since.

and I built myself a nice little army."

Xion: (as Diz) I have so many tumblr followers, you wouldn't believe it.
Mog: *from notes* Gimme the Keyblade!

Diz's eyes moved from Riku to Isa. He couldn't seem to decide what he was going to do. Was he going to shoot Riku? Kill Isa?

Axel: What do you think he should do, boys and girls?

He shivered with anticipation, when Aqua fell over in her chair behind him.

Roxas: (as Aqua) AHSNICKERS! *thunk* Definitely don't remember that from the book. Now I have to start all over again. So the string makes the bunny's ears...

He turned around, and rushed to her, firing a bullet into the ceiling angrily.


"Where do you think you're going, sweetheart?" Diz said as he struggled to lift Aqua upright.

Xion: (as Aqua) What did you think you were doing, crazyhead? Now you're one bullet short and you just shot Ruben the busboy in the foot!

"You didn't think you were going to escape, did you?"

Terra: (as Aqua) Hey, do you want to be in the chair? It's harder than it looks!

Aqua made a muffled sound, but Diz cocked his gun and pressed the nozzle to her forehead. Aqua gasped softly and held her breath.

Roxas: (as Aqua) Buy me candy or else I'll hold my breath til I turn blue!

Diz smiled viciously and turned back to the camera, which had been rolling the entire time.

Zexion: The crowds are rolling on the floors with laughter.

"Citizens of America, I reveal to you…'Someone'!"

As Diz moved out of the way, kicked the large screen down, and forced Aqua's face to the camera, three things happened at once.

Lexaeus: Yes. Diz moved, kicked the screen, shoved Aqua in front of the camera. There's your three things.
Xion: Of three things, I was absolutely certain...

The first thing to happen was a sudden dimming of the lights.

Zexion: Oh good, the movie’s about to start.
Larxene: Shhh!
Marluxia: *whisper* Who ate my popcorn?
Mog: *from notes* Power outage.

At the same time, Isa felt this rush of fabric as the lower half of his body went numb, and his hair was snatched from behind. He cried out in agony, moved as best as he could, and felt his hair being cut with a knife.

Axel: (as person cutting hair) You and your dumb faux-hawk!

He could recognize the sound. It was the same one as when he had cut that bitch's hair at Master Eraqus's house.

Roxas: Ohhh, so that’s what Mog meant when he said Larxene got split-ends.
Xion: He is a bit hard to understand sometimes.

He threw himself back, but only managed to hurt his back as needles buried into his flesh.

Terra: The flu vaccinations seem a lot crueler this year.

Riku, who had thrown up every defense he had, backed into a wall, and tried to get his eyes to adjust to the darkness. His eyes adjusted rather quickly, but he paled inside

Lexaeus: That’s… an interesting ability, to say the least.

as numbers began to float in his mind's eye again. He frowned, and silently begged the numbers to go away.

Zexion: As per usual, we’re going to stop for some pedantics. The story so far is that the Keyblade injected something into Riku that made him more aggressive and caused hallucinations until his friends beat him up to the point he collapsed, spitting out some weird marble, and he awoke later back to normal. So… was that marble some congealed whatever the Keyblade gave him and getting it out made him return to normal? If so, why is he still having hallucinations? If not, why even have the marble to begin with if you’re not going to explain what it is or even acknowledge its existence?
Xion: Either way you could say he's losing his marbles! HEY-YO! C'mon, high five. Who's going to give me a high five?

He fell to his knees, and rubbed his head, moaning softly.

"Not now, please."

Roxas: (as Riku) I don’t want to be Sam Witwicky, please! Not now, not ever!

Diz managed to flip his camera into night vision mode just as Xaldin came up behind him and shot him dead.

All: *deadpan* Yaaay.
Axel: There. He's gone. Was that huge wait worth it, folks? No? Too bad, because that's what happened.

Xaldin frowned as he crushed the camera in his hands and closed the laptop lid.

Lexaeus: And then screamed in agony at the thousands of shards he just embedded in his palm.

He turned on his heels as Larxene stopped at his side.

"Hmm, it seems things have gotten a little more complicated than we had originally planned," Larxene hummed. "Where's Marluxia when you need him?"

Marluxia: Are you people physically unable to do anything without me? For an entire group of crazed killers, you love to push the entire workload on me.
Roxas: Kinda makes me wonder where you’ll find the time to kill off Ryan.
Mog: *from notes* So the bad guys bully the good guys for a bit.

Xaldin was standing in front of Aqua, who kicked out harshly.

Terra: (as Aqua) Don't untie me! I wanna do this by myself!

He did not strike her, and Riku cursed himself for not going to save her. Isa laughed.

Larxene: (as Aqua) Almond Joy still isn't funny!

He was terrified, and he had no real plan of action. He hadn't told his men to come with him

Roxas: (as Isa) I’ve been concerned that we have a hit out on us, but you can all go home, men! Backup isn’t needed in these situations.

and he was sure that they had already gone back to Philadelphia, but he still laughed.

Axel: Because why the hell not! All these gangs are just clawing at a chance to kill one another, you don't need backup! Laugh, Isa, laugh at your own stupidity!
Mog: *from notes* Xaldin and Isa start arguing.

Xaldin dropped Isa in a crumpled heap and grabbed the first thing he saw from the floor. A long broken pipe.

Xion: The department of badfic must have hired someone to scatter broken pipes around the country in the off-chance they were needed.

He stood to his full height and swung down with all his strength. Isa managed to build enough energy to roll out of the way, but the pipe still hit his wounded leg. He cried out, and heard the distinct sound of bone breaking.

Riku jumped to his feet and ran to Aqua.


Larxene was standing next to her, pushing needles into her arms and pulling them out forcefully. Riku snatched a wrench off a tool table and wielded it clumsily. It was such a short weapon, and he really didn't have a full plan formulated.

Terra: Oh, that's easy. You choose your gene tonics right and soon the wrench will be the best weapon you have.

Larxene danced out of the way and grinned at him.

"My, we sure are feisty, huh?" She wagged a finger at him. "That's no way to treat a lady."

Roxas: (as Riku) You’re no lady! You ain't nothin' but a sister!

Aqua yelled at him, though she was still gagged, and he stopped his attempt at attacking Larxene. "Help Isa!"

Marluxia: That was unrealistically coherent.

Riku nodded and backed away. But, he already knew that he had engaged Larxene in battle, so he couldn't just turn around and run.

Xion: (as Riku) Darn you, RPG rules!
Mog: *from notes* Then the most boring fight scene ever happens. (With a weird amount of misspellings and grammar errors, too.)

"Oh, you have a choice now, Riku," Larxene huffed. She was bleeding over her eye, and her blond hair was stained with her blood. She was holding a knife to Aqua's throat. "Him, or her."

Axel: (as Riku) All of the above!

Riku looked from Aqua to Isa and back again.

Terra: (as Riku) Um. Eeeny meeny miny mo—

Aqua eyes pleaded with him, and he knew what he really wanted to do. He really wanted Aqua. He knew that saving her would mean a happy ending to their budding relationship.

Xion: Because Aqua is just something for Riku to have. That's the problem with this fic: women are just objects. Their only purpose is to be used, abused, owned by, or saved by men. To put it bluntly, it's icky and I don't like it.

And he didn't like Isa too much. Riku frowned and closed his eyes. The formula in his mind burned his eyelids, and he turned abruptly to the side and pulled the trigger without thinking.

Isa fell to the floor. He gasped for breath and clutched his throat. Larxene screamed angrily, and ran as fast as she could as Riku shot at her. He had missed, but the hangar was once again plunged in darkness, and Riku heard Xaldin's heavy body fall to the concrete floor with a loud swoosh of leather fabric.

Terra: (as Xaldin) *looks around* Where am I?
Zexion: (as Diz) In the anticlimactic death lobby. There's a huge lineup for this place. For heavens's sake, half the cast of Shakespeare's works are still in here.

Riku moved his hands along the floor, and found Isa's body. Isa breathed heavily, and hit Riku's hand away as soon as he felt it. Riku frowned, though Isa couldn't see him.

"I just saved you, asshole," Riku growled.

"Fuck you," Isa growled back.

Lexaeus: Simple gratitude is not allowed in this world.

Riku retreated. He knew Isa was in incredible pain. He could hear it in the way Isa spoke and the soft grunts. Riku put his hand in Isa's blood and panicked.

Marluxia: Then that's your own fault, you idiot.
Larxene: Meanwhile Isa's yelling "The fuck are you doing, I want to keep my blood in my body, not on yours! Make yourself useful and bandage me up, the hell is wrong with you!"

There was a heavy knocking sound on the walls, and the sound of high-pitched cursing. Larxene was still in the hangar.

Lexaeus: She's trying to echolocate her way out, with little success.

Riku prepared himself for whatever attack she had in mind, but it never came.

And it never came for a while.

Roxas: Or never came at all because she's gone now.
Zexion: We'd make an anticlimax joke, but that's the entire scene in a nutshell.

The only thing that echoed in the hangar after a few more minutes was the loud whimpers of pain from Isa. Riku sighed heavily, and stumbled through the darkness to a light switch.

Marluxia: He could have done this earlier, but that would have made all of those fascinating fights we skipped too easy.

As soon as light flooded the hangar again, Riku rushed to Aqua and untied her. She ripped the gag from her mouth and turned away from Riku. She looked saddened, like she didn't want to live anymore.

Mog: *from notes* And then Aqua does the whole “You don't wanna love me because I'll only hurt you” speech. Doesn't make a lotta sense, but we'll give her a pat on the back for effort. And then it's Zexion's turn for a scene, where he gets news that babies are happening.

"Why, good morning, Zexion," Xehanort said rather calmly.

"Sir, the Dusks," Zexion blurted. "They're coming!

Terra: Paul Revere, Laura Secord, and Zexion. One of these is not like the other.

I just got the call."

"Well, the timing could not be better," Xehanort hummed. "I expect you back in New York as soon as they are delivered.

Roxas: What's he supposed to do, deliver the babies while on the plane to New York?

I have a few matters to attend to myself,

Axel: (as Xehanort) Like shoe shopping.

but I shall be there in a few days time."

"Yes, sir."

"And, Zexion?"


"Be sure to take notes. They will be important later."

Zexion: My notebook highly disagrees with that statement.

"Yes, sir."

Zexion hung up the phone as the helicopter landed right in the village square. He hopped out, and yelled at the locals to gather supplies for him. They ran off to get towels, blankets, and water. Zexion ran to where the women were kept.

Xion: In their place?
Lexaeus: This story certainly thinks so.

To his surprise, he found all three of his surviving test subjects there.

Marluxia: ...surprised why? If you know they're alive than there should be no surprise that they're here. Or are you surprised a plan you made is working for a change?

They were sweating and moaning in pain. Their stomachs were stretched out, and they looked as though they would fall apart at any moment.

"What happened?" Zexion asked.

Roxas: Well, you see Zexion, when a mommy and a daddy love each other very much...
Mog: *from notes* Hey, you all know that iconic chestburster scene from Alien? Go watch that instead. Anyhoo, the Dusks attack some people.

The locals didn't say anything.

Marluxia: This was just another Tuesday, really.

Zexion grabbed his belongings and hurried off, flipping his phone open and calling Xehanort.

Terra: (as Zexion) Good news: our plans may finally be going somewhere. Bad news: we may no longer be allowed in the state of Hawaii for some time.

"They're here," Zexion said. "And they can move at incredible speeds. They can understand human speech and they listened to exactly what I told them. I'm on my way back, but send something to kill the locals. They can not tell anyone what happened here. We're not ready."

Zexion: Let's take a look at all the Organization has done so far. You killed a group of people at a beach, you blew up a bowling alley, you sent two people to just kill anyone in the streets, you blew up another building, plain murder individuals because you’re bored, and guess what? None of these events have ever led anywhere. No one cares what the Organization does. Why bother killing these locals when letting them live would result in the same outcome? This is not storytelling.
Terra: But it is kind of racist.

"I'm sure Xaldin would not mind doing that for you," Xehanort answered. "I'll call him shortly.

Roxas: He's in for a rude surprise later on.

I am in the middle of something right now.

Larxene: (as Xehanort) Kickin' some noobs butt in COD.

Call me when you get to New York."

"Yes, sir."

"And, Zexion, do not be afraid to test the Dusks on your way back. I want a full report on my desk as soon as you arrive."

Xion: (as Zexion) *to Dusks* You heard Bossman, babies. Get your book reports done on the plane. And no copying each other's work this time! Believe it or not, I can tell all three reports are exactly the same.

Xehanort grunted in pain. "I'll alert Vexen so he may design some kind of housing for them."

Larxene: Great. That means next time we see Vexen he'll be complaining over doing actual work.

Zexion muttered a goodbye and closed his phone. He loaded the Dusks onto the helicopter and turned to the pilot. "If you do not fly this thing to the nearest airport, I will have you eaten alive and fly the God damn thing myself, understand?"

Roxas: (as pilot) ...Okay. *bails* That sure was an easy question.
Axel: (as Zexion) *looking over controls* My bluff may have come back to bite me in the ass.
Mog: *from notes* Cut to Xion and Xehanort on a beach.

"Now, we must practice, Xion," Xehanort said slowly. "The time is almost here."

Larxene: The time is almost finally fucking here. Took long enough.

Xion smiled softly. "Okay, sir. But, what is it exactly we are doing here?"

"Xion, you are not privy to the ordeals of the Organization," Xehanort replied. "Surely, I have said this to you before.

Terra: (as Xion) About five hundred times on the flight over, sir. I'm tempted to batarang you in the face soon.

You may, however, watch. I will be demonstrating a most unique weapon designed by a very good friend of mine who has passed on."

"I'm sorry," Xion said.

Marluxia: (as Xion) Not for you, mind. I'm sorry I'm still stuck here.

"There is no need to apologize, sweetheart. Simply observe. I would appreciate it if you took notes."

Roxas: Oh sure. Don't let her join the Org., but make her your secretary. That's fair.
Xion: That glass ceiling sure looks nice from down here.

Xehanort pulled out the two plastic tubes he had stolen from his deceased colleague.

Larxene: A guaranteed way to take away the coolness factor of Xehanort’s weapons is to refer to them like they're cheap toy lightsabers.
Axel: (as Xehanort) Heheh, I stole these from his cubicle and no one even noticed. I also snatched the hula girl from his car dash.

"They will be important for later reference."

Terra: I'm sure the fic's notes had that line mentioned a few times, but it was lost in-between all the gore and sexism.

Xion nodded and took the small memo pad Xehanort gave her. She uncapped a pen and watched intently, wishing to impress Xehanort so she could eventually have time with Roxas. Alone time with Roxas.

Larxene: He was gonna get such a yelling.
Axel: (as Xion) What the hell, Ryan, you never called! Even a text with a poop emoji would have been appreciated!

Xehanort took a step forward and pointed the Ethereal Blades at a nearby couple.

Xion: Mr and Mrs Thomas Threlfall, of 9, The Elms, Paignton. They always maintained that one of the nice things about going on holiday was not having to read the newspapers or listen to the news, just getting away from it all really. And due to a tummy bug contracted by Mr Threlfall, and Mrs Threlfall rather overdoing it in the sun their first day, this was their first time out of their hotel room for a week and a half.

He pushed the buttons on the sides and swung them expertly. They made tiny whistling noises and glowed red, alerting the beach goers to his existence. Nobody moved for a long time as they were unsure how to react. They had seen plenty of people pretend to be Star Wars Jedis before; this wasn't a concern.

But, when Xehanort approached the couple and sliced them in half without any resistance, the people on the beach panicked and fled as quickly as their legs would carry them through the sand.

Roxas: One poor man dropped his ice cream cone for the second time that week.

Xion frowned

Larxene: I swear, that word will die by the end of this fic either from exhaustion or me stabbing it out of annoyance.

and screamed as two men grabbed her from behind and dragged her away.

"Dr. Xehanort!" she screamed.

Roxas: (as Xion) People trying to save me is clearly the worst thing happening and not the fact I just saw two innocents die in front of my eyes! Help, my priorities are already screwed up and I haven't joined your stupid group yet!

Xehanort turned around, and growled under his breath as Mick and Everett dragged Xion through the sand. Her robes were getting dirty as she kicked in protest.

Marluxia: Good god, that means she'll have to do laundry later, those fiends!

Xehanort followed, turning the Ethereal Blades off and tucking them into his belt.

Axel: (as Xehanort) Oop, subplots intersecting. Can't kill now.

He climbed a small sand dune, and when he reached the top

Terra: He yelled “I'm king of the world!”

he stopped as the barrel of a pistol found a new home by his temple.

Roxas: (as barrel) It’s so roomy here! Not the best neighborhood, but I think I’ll like it here.

"Don't you fucking move."

Xehanort snorted softly as Braig clicked his teeth mockingly.

Xion: (as Braig) –clickclickclickclickclick-
Roxas: (as Xehanort) Alright, I surrender! Stop making that noise!

"Oh, it seems we've come to a little bit of a crossroad," Xehanort said sadly. "We'll be out of your hair shortly, I'm sure."

"You're not going anywhere," Braig growled. "I'm Detective Judas Braig, and you are under-fucking-arrest.

Axel: This guy is un-fucking-believable.

Put your hands on your head and don't move. You have the right to remain silent—"

"Don't speak so soon," Xehanort warned.

Marluxia: Or else the writers will have to look up the full Miranda warning instead of just copying what they see on TV.

"You'll pay for it dearly."

"Christopher Xehanort?"

Xehanort turned to Mick and smiled widely.

Xion: Even he finds his silly name hilarious.

"Senator Mouse. How nice to see you. I was under the impression that you were negotiating collective bargaining right now. Looks like my tax dollars aren't being used properly. Tut tut.

"Shut the fuck up." Mick punched Xehanort in the face, but caught him before he fell.

Roxas: Having Mick’s reply being a simple punch to the face would have been more powerful than the swearing. It’s still out-of-character, but the silence would mean more.

"I've been looking for you."

Xion: You should have been looking for yourself. The fic certainly stopped trying to find your character.

Xehanort wiped a small trickle of blood from his mouth and grinned. "You must be mistaking me for somebody else. I have no idea what you're talking about.

Larxene: Great alibi, master of a terrorist group.
Marluxia: (as Xehanort) You must have gotten me confused with my twin brother, Notme.

Now, I will be going as soon as you release my associate."

Mick shook his head. "You've been busy. Creating a virus, I hear."

"You've been misinformed, I'm afraid."

Axel: Holy crap, Xehanort said something I agree with.
Zexion: (as Xehanort) I haven’t been busy at all. I just sort of flit around and kill people who aren’t bothering me in any way.

Braig pushed the barrel of the gun harder into Xehanort's temple.

Terra: (as barrel) You’ve messed up my home now!

"Your little rock star told us everything."

Lexaeus: (as Braig) Before he somehow escaped right in front of our eyes, but I'll ignore that part.

Xehanort smiled, and it turned into a giggle that escalated into a gale of laughter that raised the hair on the back of Braig's neck.

Zexion: This entire ridiculous premise has finally sunk in.
Larxene: Aliens! Freaking aliens!

"Detective, you are a brave man. You make accusations that are far beyond your intelligence. You have no idea what you're talking about. Please, I do not want to use excessive force,

Xion: (as Xehanort) On named characters, then it’s just un-sportsman like.
Mog: *from notes* Actually, he finally does have the smarts to use those weapons he has on Braig, although it's just a scratch.

"You have no concept of what it is I can do." Xehanort turned to Mick. "Release the girl,

Lexaeus: Who for some reason has remained silent during these proceedings.

or your other lackey will suffer the same fate."

Larxene: No, not Everett! For the love of god, don't hurt the beautifully in-depth character of Everett!

Mick tensed.

"You wouldn't dare shoot me, Senator," Xehanort said.

Axel: (as Mick) I take that dare. *bang* Your turn now, Everett. Truth or dare?

"I'm a big catch.

Roxas: (as Xehanort) I’m the biggest trophy fish of them all.

Someone you wouldn't accomplish a thing without me.

Marluxia: Xehanort changed his sentence halfway through and only succeeded in sounding like an idiot.

If you kill me, you have nothing.

Zexion: We might have an ending. That'd be something.

And, quite frankly, you don't have time.

Axel: (as Mick) Bang!
Xion: (as Xehanort) *falls out of chair to mime dying*
Axel: (as Mick) Look at that, I do have time.
Zexion: These characters shoot people all the time, there’s no good reason for hesitating now except the writers just don’t want to bother.

Detective Braig will die in a matter of minutes if you don't do anything about his injuries. This I promise you."

Mick made a small gesture, and Everett let Xion go without an argument. Xion rushed to Xehanort's side and hid behind him as he bent to Braig's level.

Roxas: (as Xion) Protect me, crazy mass murderer!

"You might want to request chemotherapy," he whispered. "You'll need it in the long run, I assure you."

Mick, as wealthy and influential as he was, could not do a thing as Xehanort departed.

Marluxia: Except shoot or make a mental note of where he was heading or do anything at all.

He watched, dying inside as he helped Braig up.

Roxas: (as Mick) I say, Braig, I feel like I'm dying inside right now.
Axel: (as Braig) Literally?
Roxas: (as Mick) No.
Axel: (as Braig) Then shut the hell up and get me to a doctor.

Braig grunted in pain, but put up a tough exterior, even going as far to act pissed off.

Larxene: Braig would do well in sporking sessions.

"Why are you still here?" Braig groaned. "You should go after him."

Marluxia: He even does a good job pointing out the plot holes.

Mick frowned. "No. We need you to help us." He hoisted Braig onto his back as best as he could, carrying him to his car. "We need to get you to the hospital as soon as possible. You're hurt, and I will not have any of my employees die on my watch. I'm not going to let him win."

Lexaeus: Then have Everett take him to the hospital. He doesn't have anything else to do right now, so you could focus on capturing the man you've been trying to capture this entire story. That would qualify as 'not letting him get away'.
Zexion: Nope, waist-high fence on the beach, can't do it. Stars, can't do it, not today.

Braig protested the whole way, but as soon as he was rushed into an operating room, he was no longer resistant.

Roxas: Mick wanted to punch people in the face some more, and now seemed a perfect opportunity.

It was at this exact moment that Mick decided to resign from his Senate seat. He had to stop Xehanort by any means necessary.

Zexion: By quitting that position that allots him the power to find as much information as he has. A genius course of action, if I do say so myself.

It was personal now.

Axel: I already did that joke twice. Get your own clichés to make fun of.
[to be continued…]
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