A Minor Incident
anobscureflaw

Chapter 3
So I gave my heart completely

You know, I've never really cared much about the way I look. I figured that I got what I got (as far as looks go) and I couldn't change anything, so there was no point fretting over it. I figured that I had a pretty girlfriend, so I was okay. And I never got teased or anything in school, so obviously there wasn't anything too freakish about the way I looked.

So it's funny to me that when I got home from Tommy's, I looked in the mirror for a good long time. Probably the first time I've really looked at myself in a while- usually it's just a quick glance, a quick reassurance that there aren't any stains on my shirt or my hair isn't too dirty.

There really wasn't anything too stunning to look at. My blond hair kinda sticks up on one side and I've got blue eyes. I'm kind of on the shorter side. Nothing too unusual there.

The only thing that I really like about my appearance- the only thing worth noting- is the small scar above my left eyebrow. I've had it since I was a kid- I don't even remember the story all that much, just what I've been told. Apparently I was swinging on the swings at the park and my cousin (real devil of a child!) flipped me. I fell smack on my face and a woodchip dug right into the skin above my eyebrow. The scar is actually pretty faint, as I never even needed stitches. Not only that, but my hair covers it most of the time. In fact, you can barely even see it when the hair's not there- usually people think it's a trick of the light. I guess I'm lucky in that sense; it's not a huge disfiguration or anything. Just a unique little story to tell people, if not a bit boring.

I was still staring in the mirror in my dorm room when my phone rang.

Rrrringggg. Rrrringgg. Rrrriiiinggggg. Rrrrrrinnnggg.

It kept ringing and I followed the sounds, not quite sure where I had left it last. I found myself listening to ringing bedsheets before realizing that my phone was probably under the comforter. Sure enough, it was there, and I picked it up before it went to voicemail.

"Hello?"

"Hi Roxas."

"Hey Namine, what's up?"

"I was just wondering what you were up to… you didn't answer my calls from earlier."

I felt slightly awkward at that comment and rubbed the back of neck with my hand even though she couldn't see. "Yeah, sorry about that, I completely forgot…"

"No problem, really. I just wanted to make sure everything was alright because you've never done that before." She paused before speaking again. "So… Is everything good?"

"Yeah, it's fine. I actually haven't done much today besides go to lunch…"

"Kairi told me you showed up." She didn't sound accusatory at all, like anybody else would have. She was too nice for that, too trusting. Not that I was doing anything wrong at all. "So anyways, I was just calling to ask if you wanted to come over or something, maybe watch a movie."

"Well, actually… I've got plans."

"…Oh. Alright. I'm tired anyways, I may just head to bed early…" She sounded disappointed, and I decided to quickly remedy it.

"But listen, how about breakfast tomorrow? Both of us don't have morning classes…"

"Sounds good! Just call me or come over around ten… I want to sleep in a bit tomorrow."

I could tell that she was relieved I wasn't completely avoiding her, as I was making an effort to see her.

"Got it. Sleep tight, I'll see you tomorrow."

"Goodnight."

Click.

I glanced at my phone while the screen was still lit up to see that it read 8:52. I decided to head down to the lobby area since Axel probably had no clue which room was mine.

Sure enough, when I got downstairs I saw Axel talking to a dorm assistant.

"Sorry, sir, but I can't give information like that. You can leave a message, but I can't give you anybody's exact room number."

He opened up his mouth to respond but I placed my hand on his shoulder from behind. He turned around and smiled. "Never mind, then. Thanks anyways." He said to the assistant as we began to walk away.

"Ready to go?" He asked me.

"Yeah." I nodded. Still in the same jeans and black t-shirt as earlier, he nodded back. But this time he didn't have the glasses on. "So where are we going?"

"Uh… Honestly I didn't really think about it. Is there anywhere in particular you want to go?" He held open the door of the lobby for me as I walked out.

"Nah…" It was dark outside, and I followed him to the parking lot located behind the dorm.

"Alright then. Have you ever been to 7th Heaven?"

"Uh… no." I said hesitantly, trying to figure out what type of place it could be. I managed to narrow it down to either a strip club or a regular club. Both of which were similar in the fact that girls wore skimpy clothing; the only difference between the clubs were that at a strip club, girls get paid for being skanky.

He laughed slightly. "You look… disturbed."

I rubbed the back of my neck again, which I tended to do when I was nervous. "Well… I don't really like clubbing to be honest."

"Don't worry, it's not a club. It's a bar- really relaxed, actually. My friend owns it so we can get drinks cheap. I figure we can just hang there for a bit and then if we want to do something else, we can."

I visibly relaxed. "That sounds fine." We were still weaving through cars, but I had no idea which car we were looking for.

"So you know how I said you'd know the car was mine?" Axel asked, an amused look growing on his face.

"Yeah…"

"Well… let's see if you can guess." He pointed to 3 parked cars. "One of those is mine. If you pick right, you get a ride tonight. If you're wrong, I leave your sorry ass behind."

I could feel the bewildered expression on my face, but nevertheless this was a pretty unique idea. Fun and spontaneous. I liked it.

The first car was a brand new Lexus. I instantly ruled it out, as… Axel was a cab driver. Not much else to say there. "The Lexus is out."

He grinned and folded his arms. The streetlight shone above us, almost like this were a gameshow of sorts.

The last 2 cars were… completely different. The first was an old navy blue Volkswagen beetle, complete with broken bumper in the front. The second was a grey soccer-mom minivan.

I was tempted to say the beetle, just because it was so… Axel. But then I saw the bumper stickers. 'Meat is Murder' 'Fight for Freedom' and '97.9 the wave.' I knew Axel had to fit certain standards to be taken seriously with his art, but still… this was a bit overboard. If it was his car, he was seriously a hypocrite.

"The minivan." I said decisively.

"Is that your final answer?" He cocked an eyebrow and tilted his head slightly.

"Mmmhmm."

"You, my friend…" He pulled his keys out of his pocket and threw them to me. I barely caught them and fumbled around the various keychains for the car key. I separated it from the others, and…

"You're right!" He said, right as I saw that the key was to a minivan. I tossed the keys back and we started to walk towards the grey van. "As soon as I saw that car I thought of you. And I knew I had to park next to it."

"I gotta say, I wouldn't expect you to have a minivan."

"Aw, why not? It's a great soccer mom car!"

"…And you're a soccer mom?" We separated as he walked towards the driver's seat and I headed towards the passenger side. As soon as we both were in the car again and Axel started the engine, we resumed the conversation.

"I could be." He said randomly, and turned his head to back out, careful not to hit someone or something. "So why'd you not think it was the beetle?"

"I remembered what you said about fitting this 'indie' image… I didn't think you'd conform that much just to be taken seriously. I mean, that was hands down a hipster car. So I figured it was a trick, I guess."

He tapped his temple with his index finger. "Smart kid, you."

"So… why a minivan?"

"Eh, it was my friend's mom's. She didn't want to go through the trouble of selling it back to a dealer, and CarMax is a bitch. So she gave it to me for cheap, and I figured, why the hell not? It was a good deal."

"Makes sense." We started driving through town, both quiet after that. Occasionally someone would say something, but I guess neither of us were the kind of people who talked just to fill silence. Instead we just listened to the music. It was the same CD of Axel playing the piano, and he had it on track 13 again.

A few times I glanced over at him. He was wearing his glasses, since he was driving, but… somehow, his eyes still stood out. That deep green, I had never seen a color like it before.

Ten minutes later, we were downtown. I didn't know where exactly, but the taller buildings and vivid nightlife were a dead giveaway that we were somewhere in the heart of the city.

There were people of all ages walking around. Teenagers in line outside a club, an old couple waiting to be seated at an outdoor restaurant. That was the beauty of city life. Anything goes, really.

Before I knew it, Axel had pulled into a parking spot. A small brick building stood in front of us, but not dingy. The sign read '7th Heaven' and there was an 'OPEN' sign in the window.

Again, Axel opened the door for me. I wasn't sure how to feel about that, but it could have been something he did for everybody- out of habit or something.

It was a typical bar, or at least what I'd imagine one to look like (since I hadn't really ever been in one before.) There were round tables scattered throughout, various decorations on the walls. Dart boards in one corner, a couple of pool tables in another. Then there was the long bar that ran the length of the building. TV sets playing various sports games were also hanging on the walls.

"Welcome to- Hey, Axel!" A woman called from behind the bar to the right. I glanced over, not sure what to expect and saw a pretty, 20-something brown-haired woman.

"Hey, Tifa." Axel motioned for me to follow him and took a seat at the bar, a couple of empty seats standing between him and another guy further down the bar. He patted the seat next to him and I took a seat.

"And who's this?"

"This is-"

"Roxas." I said with a grin. "Nice to meet you."

"And you as well." She smiled back at me and bent over to grab something from under the counter. She came up with a rag and wiped down the counter where we sat.

"Sorry- some really messy guys were just here, didn't get a chance to clean before you sat down…."

"Don't worry about it." Said Axel with a wave.

"So, what do you want?"

"Uh…Give us a sec, okay?" Axel responded, glancing at me.

"Sure! Just call me over when you're ready."

"I forgot you're underage, I just realized that now… I hope you don't feel too awkward. Do you drink?"

"Not really. I mean I have a few times, but…" I said, though I was lying. A sip of beer in high school doesn't really qualify, I didn't think.

"If you don't want to, then you don't have to." Axel said with a slightly worried expression on his face.

"I mean, I kind of want to. Why not, right? I'm not going to get totally wasted or anything."

He grinned. "Alright then. I'll have to order for you, since Tifa feels guilty serving minors- I'll just tell her I want two beers. That alright?"

I nodded.

Two beers landed on the counter in front of us, and I took a gulp and grimaced. Axel eyed me over the top of his drink. "You haven't drinken before."

I wiped my mouth. "Well, not really, to be honest."

He laughed. "Kid," he took a sip of his drink. "You're in for a surprise."

It had to have been a few hours later, I didn't really know. The time flew by, and a couple of drinks later we somehow ended up in front of Axel's apartment. I was buzzed, though I only had a few drinks—obviously I was a lightweight. Axel only drank the first hour we were there, since he had to sober up to drive home.

The bar was actually fun- Tifa was a laugh, telling us stories about the various guys who came around regularly to ask her out. We played pool, and I was completely terrible and missed the ball a few times due to my drunken stupor. The rest of the time we just talked about school, and life, and sports, and plenty of things inbetween. I guessed it was around midnight when Axel suggested we go somewhere else. Neither of us had any ideas. I was still a little drunk, but somewhere along the line we decided to just go back to his apartment and hang out.

By the time we reached his apartment I had sobered up a bit. Enough to talk normally and remember what happened in the morning.

Honestly, Axel was right when he talked about his apartment- it really was a piece of shit. Not completely uninhabitable, but it was old and dingy. The bricks were dark with dirt and the windows were dirty all the way up. Not that they hadn't been cleaned, they were just… that old. And that was just the outside, I had yet to even see the inside.

We walked straight to the elevator—I'm surprised it actually worked—and he pushed the number eight.

The elevator opened with a Ding! and we walked down the hallway, a musty smell filling my nose. He stopped in front of a door and pulled his set of keys from his back pocket.

"My roommate might be home…" He said, twisting the key in the lock. "Sorry if he is, I'll try to get him to leave."

"Uh, is he that bad?"

"Well… let's just say he's earned the name 'Forecast Frank' from a couple of my friends. He's… on the insane side." The door was unlocked, but we stayed outside in case he was home.

"And… how'd he earn that nickname?"

"You don't want to know."

"Aw, don't say that. You've got me all curious now."

"Alright, but when I'm done, remember you asked me." He leaned against the door, his tattoos more visible than ever in the dim light. I was still curious as to how he got them.

"About a month ago my friend and I worked together as waiters at a restaurant. Anyways we got fired that day- that's another story, for another time- so we came home around noon. I guess he wasn't expecting us, and uh." He took a deep breath as if preparing himself for something epic. "Well when we walked in he was jerking off on the couch. Not that strange, right? I mean he's fresh out of college. That's what guys do. But well, here's the strange thing… When we walked in he didn't even look at us or pull up his pants, he kept staring at the TV. I figured he was watching some really heavy porn or something. But then when we walked over to see what it was… it was the weather channel, dude." He stared at me wide-eyed, as if in disbelief at his own story. "The fucking weather channel."

It took me a second before the sheer absurdity of the story hit me, and I started laughing and couldn't stop.

Axel continued over my laughing, this time smiling a bit himself. "And it wasn't even something good, like storm chasers. I mean that I could have understood a little better, like maybe he had a lightning fetish or something. But no, it was the week's forecast. Like, all that 'Sunny with a low of 74, and a wind gust of 10!' shit. I kid you not."

This time, Axel exploded in laughter as well and we laughed a good couple of minutes before composing ourselves. Finally we stood up, wiping tears out of our eyes.

"Needless to say I avoid him whenever possible. It was Demyx who came up with the name, though. He refuses to come to my apartment without calling ahead of time to see if Frank is here."

"Demyx?"

"My friend. He's pretty cool, I think you'd like him."

"Cool." I nodded my head.

"Anyways… are you ready to go in?"

I pretended to brace myself. "I… suppose so." I said dramatically.

He put on a serious face. "Well…Here goes nothing."

Well, obviously I can't make deadlines. Again, I apologize- but I suppose this means to completely ignore the once every 2 weeks rule, as that clearly isn't happening.

So far, it's been moving kind of slow. I think it's better for them to start out as friends, though, which is what I'm trying to do. I don't know if it's working, but... I hope it is? It's either next chapter or the following one that things get moving, so stay tuned!

Sorry for the wait, though. If you find yourself waiting for an update, why not check out my Riku/Sora story Soft Revolution? (/shameless plug)

Again, reviews are much appreciated!

Until next time...
anobscureflaw