Shorter than usual but it gets a lot of emotion. Next chap is gonna be longer.
Blackmoondragon1415: Yeah, it's gonna be really awful! And this will explain a lot of his actions in the third movie.
Chapter 3: Tension Unleashed
Over the next several days, Alaric spent more and more time with Alana and soon it became a routine. She came bright and early and left every night before Alaric went to bed and to the friends of Alaric, it seemed that they never got to see him at all. Iago was feeling particularly left out, but he hid the hurt behind a cynical mask of indifference which Alaric wasn't sure why the parrot was acting strange. Iago of course knew better than to tell Alaric what was really on his mind, Genie had practically forbid it. But to the disgruntled parrot, it seemed as if he was the only one who cared about Alaric. And to further instigate it, he brought it up at the dinner table.
Alana had gone home early, saying she had something that she needed to do and for once that evening it was just him and the rest of the palace inhabitants. Iago frowned drumming his wingtips against the tabletop angrily and the rest just ignored him. Alaric however was curious as to what had the parrot so upset and so it was he that made the first conversation of the evening.
"What's going on, Iago?" He asked directing his voice towards parrot, who only frowned further. The others at the table all jumped at the sudden call out. "Why are you angry?" Aladdin knew instantly by the way to Iago puffed his chest out and groaned internally.
"He's just cranky." Genie said before Iago could answer, and he threw the parrot a warning glance. He, himself, had had enough of Iago's constant complaints against Alana.
"Oh." Alaric wasn't sure what to think of that answer, but he let it go with a shrug. "So, um, did you get your work done?" He asked the Sultan, desperate to keep some type of conversation going.
"Oh, yes, though I must say that it wasn't that fun at all." Alaric grinned at him as the Sultan gave a small chuckle.
"Carpet beat me in another game." Genie scowled and Alaric patted the rug floating next to him.
"Way to go, Carpet." he said playfully, grinning at Genie when he scowled deeper. Carpet waved his tassels in triumph and Jasmine giggled at him. Aladdin shook his head, but he watching Iago who was glaring at a spot on the wall not meeting anyone's gaze. Again, Alaric noticed, but he decided that perhaps he should wait until they were alone to talk. Jasmine could see the tension that Iago was thrusting, so she cleared her throat.
"So, what did you and your mother talk about today?"
"Oh, not much really. She just wanted me to tell her some of the adventures we had."
"Really?" Aladdin asked, keeping up the conversation.
"Yeah, but she didn't like hearing about Mechanicles. She said he was too weird sounding." Aladdin gave a laugh along with everyone else, but not a one at the table was sure what to make of that. Alana had been asking Alaric quite a few questions lately and all but staying away from questions aimed at herself. To Aladdin it was a little more than suspicious. Finally Iago had enough.
"Are you all nuts?" he said finally and Alaric looked at him.
"Are you seriously just 'okay' with her askin' about you, but you can't ask about her?" Alaric was puzzled by his behavior and stuttered to answer him.
"No! Tell me!"
"Well, it's just that she doesn't really want to talk about that. She says that it's better to just forget it."
"No it's not!"
"Iago, knock it off." Aladdin hissed.
"Fine! You wanna be on her side, be my guest!" Disgruntled and extremely annoyed he took off flying out of the room. Alaric poked at his plate a moment before sighing heavily.
"Sorry about Iago." Aladdin said and the boy looked up at him. "He's just tired I guess."
"No, it's my fault. I've been really busy lately. He's feeling lonely." Genie sighed with relief quietly at Alaric's assumptions. Though, they were on the right track, that wasn't all that was bothering the bird.
"Maybe, I should go talk with him." Alaric offered and he got up from the table. "It's getting kind of late anyway." Aladdin nodded.
"Go ahead." Alaric walked out of the room and once he was gone. Genie blew air noisily out of his mouth.
"That was a close one."
"Don't you think that Iago may be right just a little?" Jasmine asked and all the males at the table looked in her direction. "It is suspicious."
"Aww, c'mon Jaz." Genie said with a shake of his head. "Don't tell me that you think something is wrong?"
"Well, I think she's right." Aladdin agreed. "She's been here for what? A week? How long is she going to drag this out? And what do you think will happen when she leaves?"
"Alaric, will be devastated." Jasmine murmured and the Sultan nodded.
"Yes, he will. And I do hate to put this out there, but…" The Sultan seemed hesitant still on saying anything and Jasmine put a hand over his.
"Er, well, it's just that…" he sighed then and decided there was no way to avoid it. "If she desires to take the boy with her, I'm afraid that lawfully she…could." A heavy silence fell across the table then and Aladdin was the first to say something, while Genie was still in shock.
"Yes, technically he ishers, Aladdin. You may have taken him in, but if this were to go to a council court, I'm afraid the odds would be forever in her favor." Aladdin felt a bad feeling enter his gut then.
I walked to my room wondering what to say to make amends with my best friend. It was true that I hadn't been around a lot lately and he was probably feeling very low. As I pondered what to say, I just decided to wing it and go with whatever would make the parrot talk, though I knew that this was a semi-difficult task.
"Iago?" I called already knowing he was in my room and there I found him sitting on the balcony railing his back to me. I closed the door, watching him to see if he would acknowledge I called, but he didn't. Instead, the only way I knew that he had heard me was the tightening of his back when he folded his wings tightly across his chest.
"Please, don't be mad." I stepped out of my room in the cool night air and came up behind him. "Mind if I join you?" He shuffled a bit and I took it as a 'yes', as I sat up on the railing beside him, my back facing out. I was turned so that I could see his expression and just looking at him I could tell that he was more hurt than angry.
"Iago, please talk to me. I know you're upset, but I didn't mean to ignore you." Iago huffed and I tried to touch him, but he moved away from my fingers. "Really, I am sorry." Iago's eyes shifted towards me once, briefly taking in my gaze before turning back to glare at the sky. "Iago."
"Shut up." he snapped quietly and I frowned this time.
"I'm trying to apologize! You could at least listen!" Something I said had him whirling around to look me in the face and I was startled by the intense glare I was getting from him.
"OH, YOU WANT ME TO LISTEN, IS THAT IT?" He snarled loudly and I looked at him in both puzzlement and incomprehension. "WELL HOW ABOUT YA LISTEN TO ME FOR ONCE!" I frowned at him.
"You think she cares for you?"
"Shut up!" He hollered at me and I was so startled that I slid off the railing and now sat on the ground, looking up at his raging self. "NO! She doesn't care! And when she hurts ya don't come cryin' to me! I tried to warn ya!"
"You're one to talk!" I snapped back. "How many times have you trusted someone that wasn't trust worthy?" "Oh, so you wanna put the blame on me, huh? FINE! I don't care! Wallow in your stupidity!" With that he took off, leaving me staring at the spot he had been moments ago, before standing up angrily. I leaned against the rail and shouted:
"You're just being paranoid!" I shouted loudly back at him, knowing he was still within earshot somewhere in the trees below. "It's fine by me if you want to act stupid, you stupid parrot!" Getting frustrated, I shoved away from the railing and stalked back inside my room.
I was glaring at the wall, my back to the balcony, when I heard him fly in later on and as he shuffled around his bed that hung down from the ceiling. For a moment there was silence and then he cleared his throat.
"Kid?" he asked tentatively. I refused to look. "Look, I'm-I'm sorry…for what I said to ya."
"Yeah, right. Did Al tell you to say that?" I asked sitting up and looking at him.
"No!" He snapped. "I was tryin' to apologize!"
"Well that was what I was trying to do earlier and you wouldn't let me! So why should I listen?" He growled at me and I glared back.
"You are so freakin' stubborn ya know that?"
"Oh? And you're not?" I retorted and then Iago growled at me.
"You are a really annoyin' kid!"
"Well, you're an annoying parrot!" Genie came into the room then, blowing a whistle and wearing a black and white striped shirt.
"Time out, boys!" He wrapped an arm around me and pulled me far from the side of the bed, keeping me on one side and with his other hand he kept Iago from flying out of his nest. "Fowl play!"
"Genie, let go!" I said trying to get out of his grip. Genie instead picked me up and letting go of Iago, opened the door to my room.
"Alaric, why don't you go and sleep in Al's room. I'll talk to Birdman, okay?" Before I could protest, Genie thrust me out the door and I shut it in my face. Glaring at the door, I slammed on it with my fist.
"You could at least give me my pillow!" The door opened and my pillow was thrown in my face. Grumbling, I went down towards Al's room carrying my pillow. I knocked on his door once I got out there and sighed irritably. Al opened it a few minutes later, a sleepy expression on my face. He saw me with my pillow and cocked an eyebrow at me.
"Genie sent me out so he could talk to that parrot."I said slightly irritable and Al nodded a little.
"Come on, then." Al moved out of the way and I came in tossing myself across the bed. "What happened?"
"He's being unfair!" I shouted my voice muffled by the bed. "He acts like I'm purposely trying to ignore what he's saying! And he won't let me explain anything!" Al patted my head and I looked up at him.
"Look, Rick, he's just concerned. In fact, well, so am I." I was floored. What?
"So…you think I'm being stupid too?" Shock went across Al's face.
"No, of course not!" He said hastily and I frowned and sat up. "Alaric, we're just concerned that she might be playing with your emotions." I pulled away from him and started to get up.
"Did you ever think that she might be here for me! That maybe she wanted to apologize for what she did?"
"Well fine! You and Iago can just...Leave me alone!" I snatched my pillow and stomped away from Al. Ignoring him as he called my name; I slipped into the hall and went to find someplace else to sleep.
Genie frowned disapprovingly at Iago and the parrot glared back.
"Iago, you know that Alaric isn't ignoring you on purpose. So why are you making this so hard on him?"
"Cuz, it's stupid of all of us to let that devil lady come sweeping in here and trying to snatch the kid! You know she'll try!" Realization dawned on Genie and he sat with a small sad smile.
"You think she'll take him?"
"I don't think…I know. I mean look at the evidence! She's been here a week and that is not good for her to be pullin' his time away from us like that!"
"Don't be silly. She's just…well I don't know exactly why she's been here so long, but Alaric isn't bothered by it any longer."
"Exactly! And if you don't do something you're going to lose him!" Genie looked at Iago who suddenly realized what his outburst implied. "Er…I meant 'we' are going to…"
"What exactly are you saying?"
"Don't-don't ask me that. You know what I'm sayin'."
"Don't pretend you haven't thought about it." The parrot snapped. "Even I've seen it. Ever since you've known that kid, you and he have been close. That-that day I came back to Agrabah, I saw how much he looked up to you and still does. And you, you looked at him like a-a well you know." Genie sighed and ran a hand across his face.
"Has it really been that obvious?" he whispered and Iago caught the note of worry in his voice.
"Whaddya worrying about? Just tell him."
"Iago, I can't."
"Why can't you?"
"He can't know how I really feel about him. It-it just wouldn't work out. Besides, he has his mother. He doesn't need me."
"Of course he does!"
"No, you don't understand. I can't be that. I just can't." Genie left the room then, a great depressed cloud hanging over his head. Iago watched him go slightly annoyed and slightly remorseful. With a groan he fell back against his pillow. Why did life have to turn so difficult? Why do genies have to be so difficult?
Aladdin walked down the hall wondering where his little brother had disappeared to. He saw Genie floating down the hall a look of mixed emotions etched into his face.
"Genie?" The blue jinni jumped at the sound of Aladdin calling his name and turned his head in Aladdin's direction.
"Oh. Hi, Al."
"Have you seen Alaric?" Puzzlement replaced the mixture of emotions and Aladdin soon forgot he had seen it.
"Not since I sent him to your room." Aladdin sighed and Genie grew more puzzled.
"I was afraid of that."
"Why? What happened?" Genie asked wondering what could have made Alaric run off.
"Well, I made a mistake Genie. I know that I'm supposed to be nice about this whole thing and not give Alaric a hard time, but I can't help but feel the same way as Iago does."
"Oh." Genie said rather softly and then he recovered. "Well, let's go find him." Aladdin nodded and the two of them went down the hall.
They found him in the lounge room, his head on his pillow in Jasmine's lap. She was petting his head and he was stretched out across the other large cushions. He was breathing softly letting Aladdin and Genie see that he was deep asleep. Abu was lying curled under Alaric's arm, snoring softly. Alaric had a slight frown on his face and both Genie and Aladdin winced. Jasmine saw them and looked up.
"He was very tired." She whispered and gave them a small smile and then frowned. "He was upset too. What did you say to him?"
"I'll explain later." Aladdin murmured and Genie came forward.
"I'll take him back to his room." He murmured and Jasmine let Genie pick the boy up off her lap. Aladdin too hold of Abu as Genie grabbed Alaric. Alaric didn't wake up, he just moved closer to Genie.
"Goodnight, Alaric." Aladdin said softly, rubbing Alaric's head. The boy frowned in his sleep and deep down Aladdin knew that he'd wake up angry tomorrow. Genie sensed this and smiled bitterly before taking Alaric out of the room.
So again this is short, but needed for the storyline. think things are rocky now? Just wait til next time. Review!