Discussion in 'Recent Additions' started by Undine, Jan 6, 2012.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Nice to have a continuation of this one!
Made my day! I absolutely can't wait for Cee to come to and for them to reunite :wubu:
<3 oh thank you so much
*screaming* YESSSS AN UPDATTTEEE~~ cant wait for the next one~!!
In the past couple od days Ive re-read the whole story couple of times and I'm really really realllyyyyyy need more. Cee and Xander are so cute together and so innocent and so lovely and just so perfect I can't ....:doh: please don't let me (and everyone) suffer to long, please :3
Ooooooh! :smitten::smitten: Sooooo happy to see Xander back!
Thank you Undine!
Yaaaay!!! Just in time for my birthday and everything!!
Just read the whole story again. It is so, so good. All the background detail about energy, the colors, smells of characters....
man, I'm sure it has to do with Xander's paranoia, but people are really mean!
And Xander must be broke as a joke from all the food purchases he makes!
There is so much stuff I can't wait to find out about in this story! And it would make a really cute graphic novel!
Oh, you are right about the graphic novel--it would work beautifully!
I have become deeply smitten with this story. I even doodled some characters in my spare time. They are of Cee and Xander. One is Xander telling lies to his mom on the phone. Xander is grouchy that his shirt is too small.
Oh wow Molly -apart from being super talented in the drawing department, your images of Xander are extremely close to those from my inner eye. Lovely work!
Yay, I'm glad to see an update. I love this story.
"I, um...b-breakfast...this morning, before...before everyone was up," he sputtered, again trying to not dry heave.
"Xander..." Ling sighed. "You know I can't let you have any more of that tea."
Tears welled up in his eyes, and he hated himself even more for the desperation he heard in his voice. "B-but it...I didn't...it was working." Kai stared at him curiously.
"Not the way it's supposed to," Ling told him gently. "I told you to let me know if you didn't feel right, remember? You are not doing well right now. And it's been far too long since you've eaten."
He bit his tongue to prevent the hideous flood of self-hate his mind immediately conjured from gushing forth aloud, but that didn't stop the tide from crashing around within him. Well, now you're screwed, you whale. Your one chance to do something without surgery and you blew it with your inability to hide how goddamn pathetic you are. Now they're all going to see what a garbage disposal you are and watch in horror as you blow up like a disgusting lard balloon. Because you know that's what's going to happen. Unless you just put a stop to it all -
"Stop!" Kai exclaimed, grabbing Xander's arm.
Xander flinched away from his warm touch, and Ling turned a questioning gaze from Kai to Xander and back.
So she lied, Xander thought bitterly, waiting for Cee's brother to tell Ling what he'd been thinking. But, to his surprise, he stayed silent and just stared at him.
"Alright, I'm going to have to give you something to counteract it, Xander. And you need to eat something, right now."
Eating is the last thing I need to do, he thought, but all he said aloud was, "I'm not hungry."
"I don't doubt that you're not, but it doesn't matter," she told him sternly. "As you reacted so strongly to the tea, I have no idea how your body will react when I give you this. It's very possible that you will rapidly regain every bit of hunger the herbs have been suppressing for the past few days. To be safe, you should eat."
"But I...I'm fine...really. You don't need to do this...I'll just...I'll stop drinking it."
She gave him a sympathetic look. "Xander, please. You're not fine. I know how much you wanted this to work, but you can't go on like this."
He felt his insides heave again, his humiliation bringing more tears to his eyes. He clenched his fists and said nothing.
"Alright. Kai, would you please make him something while I get this ready? A sandwich should be good for now, nothing too greasy or spicy. The bread is in the corner cabinet, everything else is in the refrigerator."
"Sure," Kai agreed. "What do you like, Xander?"
"Everything," he muttered. "Isn't that obvious?"
He hesitated before responding. "How's turkey and cheese with lettuce?"
"Have a seat. I can tell you're dizzy," Ling told him as she began pulling jars of herbs out of one of the cabinets.
He clenched his jaw. "I can't."
She just sighed, but Kai turned and gave him a curious look. "What do you mean?" he asked.
He refused to answer, and just leaned against the counter, trying to calm his breathing.
"Seriously, Xander, you look like you're going to fall over. Just sit."
"No." He closed his eyes against the sudden brightness in his vision and their concerned expressions.
"Hey, do you want mustard or mayo?" Kai asked, and suddenly he was wheezing, his empty stomach churning and forcing his eyes open as he doubled over, clutching his soft belly. Alternate waves of heat and cold overwhelmed his senses until all that existed was the ocean of his own self-loathing, and he was drowning, gratefully sucking oblivion into his lungs, welcoming the blackness with relief.
Too soon a hand grabbed his and began to pull him out, back up towards the blinding whiteness. "No..." he slurred as objects began to take shape around him again. Kai's angular face came into focus in front of him and he realized that he was on the floor and the young man was clutching his hand, channeling a steady stream of his mossy green energy up Xander's arm and into his brain.
"He definitely needs to eat," Kai stated, glancing at Ling meaningfully. She switched off the burner on the stove, where the kettle was beginning to whistle, and slapped together the rest of the sandwich Kai had been assembling. Xander felt his skin begin to crawl as she handed the plate to Kai, and he held it up to Xander.
"Please...I don't want to."
"I know," Kai said, "but you need to." His brows scrunched together, and Xander felt a surge of energy pulse through his body and relieve some of the tension locked in his muscles. A full breath filled his lungs for what felt like the first time in months, and his stomach growled. He grabbed the sandwich from the plate and took an eager bite, the flavors almost foreign on his tongue as he chewed and swallowed. Another bite, and another, until the sandwich was gone, and he sighed.
"Here," Ling said, handing him a large white mug, "drink this down all at once. Luckily there's enough ginger in it that it will taste good."
He did as she asked, and the hot liquid joined the sandwich in his belly with a pleasant slosh. Ling blew a strand of hair out of her face and took the mug back from him. "Alright. Kai, would you take him up to the guest room?"
"Of course," the young man responded, rising easily to his feet. "How long should we wait for the second dose?"
She rubbed her hands wearily down her cheeks. "I have no idea. I've never seen anyone react this way before. Have you?"
"I can honestly say I've never made an appetite suppressant for anyone before."
"I personally haven't, either, but I've seen my grandmother give it to several people. Most of them had completely normal reactions. A few odd ones complained that it didn't work well enough or that it gave them headaches and made them dizzy. My grandmother told me that was because they had a sensitivity to the coleus, so she made a new one up for them without it."
Can't she just...
"But I've never seen anyone else with his symptoms. Nothing in the blend I gave him should cause what he's experiencing. So what I mixed up for him now was a variation of my standard tri-level, mixed with something to stimulate his appetite and some additional calming agents."
Stimulate my appetite? he thought in dismay, his vision tilting to the side a bit.
Ling continued, "So I guess just watch him. I certainly imagine he'll need more than one dose, of course."
Kai nodded. "Alright, Xander, let's go chill in your room." He held out a hand, presumably to help Xander up from where he was still slumped against the bottom counters, as Ling exited the kitchen.
"She said we should go up to the guest room, not have me yank you down here on the floor with me," he muttered, ignoring the man's assistance and awkwardly heaving himself to his feet.
"Let's take the back stairs," Kai suggested. "Avoid unnecessary explanations, yeah?"
"There are back stairs?"
"Yeah, through the pantry. They come out in the linen closet in the bathroom." He led him into the cramped pantry and swung the back wall inward to reveal a narrow set of steps leading up into darkness. Kai flicked a switch, and an overhead light illuminated the passageway. He took a few steps up and looked back. "Coming?"
Xander grimaced. "I..."
Kai glanced around the stairwell and then back at Xander, appraising his large form for a few moments. "It'll be tight, but you'll make it. You might have some trouble in a few spots. Maybe try going up sideways."
His jaw clenched as he followed Kai up the stairs, quickly feeling the walls try to compress his softness. He tried lifting his arms to make the passage easier, but that didn't do much, as it seemed to get even narrower after a few steps and he could actually feel the flab on his hips being squeezed by the rough plaster. Blushing furiously, he turned to the side. His gut and ass still slid along the walls, but it was somewhat easier than trying to face forward. He attempted to blank his mind as he worked his way up, but the knowledge that he was having such a hard time fitting in a stairwell was too immediate for him to avoid, and he found himself wheezing when they finally reached the top.
Kai looked back at him in alarm.
"Just...asthma...apparently," he breathed, fumbling in his pocket for the tincture. Kai slid back the door in front of them and reached around the shelves of the linen closet to open the outer door as Xander dripped a bit of the liquid under his tongue and felt his breathing start to calm.
"Hmm, kava for asthma," Kai remarked as he rolled the shelves out into the bathroom. "Interesting. Never thought of that. Alright, here we go. So are they still using the room at the end of the hall for the guest room?"
Xander eagerly stumbled out of the constricting passageway and into the bathroom after him, breathing more easily how that he was in an open space. "Yeah, that's...where I've been staying." He glanced at Cee's door as they exited the bathroom, and he felt his stomach clench with a pang of hunger. He resolutely lowered his eyes and trailed into the guest room after Kai, who shut the door behind him.
"I heard there were some incidents in your dorm, right? Hey, you're hungry. That's good. I'll text Ling."
"Wait, what? How did you..."
But Kai was already settling himself in the chair beneath the window, his gingery hair glinting in the sunlight streaming in through the glass and his fingers tapping away at his phone screen. "She'll bring something up in a few minutes. I see auras, and I can see from yours that you're feeling hungry."
"You see what?"
Ken leaned back in the chair, stretching his long legs out in front of him and propping his feet up on the bed frame. "Auras. A person's personal energy field. It's part of how I heal. Whereas Ling works mostly with touch, I'm more attuned to color. And right now there's a blotch of a greenish-yellow right over your stomach that means you're hungry. That's a very good sign. There's still a nasty cloud around your head and your heart, though. Unfortunately I think it'll take a few more doses to alleviate those. Why don't you put some sweats on and get in bed? The stuff Ling gave you is probably going to make you pretty tired."
Xander just gaped at him for a moment before grabbing his sweatpants from where he'd draped them across the bed and trudging back to the bathroom. A few minutes later he stood next to the bed again, glancing between Kai, who appeared to be playing a game on his phone, and the mattress, whose springs screamed every time he settled himself on it.
"Why don't you get comfy? You should rest," Kai said without looking up from his screen.
"You're gonna pull an Edward Cullen and sit there and watch me sleep?" Xander scoffed, yanking alternately on the hem of his t-shirt and the waistband of his sweats to make sure they were still touching. They somehow felt even tighter than they had earlier that day.
Kai snorted. "I don't think I could achieve that level of creepy if I tried. But seriously, we have no idea what's going to happen. I just want to make sure you're okay and you don't start foaming at the mouth or anything. So just relax and I'll try not to be too stalkerish, okay?"
He grimaced, but inched his bulk towards the yielding surface of the bed, coaxing a series of loud protests from its innards as he attempted to shift into a comfortable sitting position.
Kai kept his eyes on his phone until Xander was reasonably settled and the bed had stopped creaking, and then, after stretching his muscled arms over his head with a satisfied sigh, looked at Xander. "So, how are you doing?"
"What?" He averted his gaze from the easy way Kai sprawled in the chair - a chair he knew he wouldn't even fit in - and stared down at the way the comforter bulged over his now-grumbling belly.
"How are you? How was your semester? What's going on in your life outside of here?"
"Um, my semester was...okay, I guess. And...nothing. I'm pretty boring."
Kai nodded. "College, right? If you want to get decent grades, you have no life. What's your major again?"
What is he doing? "English."
"Really? Why did I think it was psych or something like that?"
"I...I don't know. You're pre-med, right?"
Kai nodded again, sending glints of sunbeams reflecting off his hair dancing across the room. "Last year of undergrad. Finally. So what do you want to do with English?"
"I'd really like to -" He felt his cheeks warm and cut himself off. "I don't know."
"What?" He sat up straighter, giving Xander a curious look.
"No, really, what were you going to say?"
Feeling constricted, he tried to fluff the comforter out around him. "It's stupid."
"I highly doubt that."
Xander rolled his eyes.
"Seriously. You're not stupid, so I'm sure your dream job isn't stupid."
His face scrunched up as he retorted, "You've known me for all of an hour and I've done some pretty stupid things in that time. So upon what exactly are you basing this assumption?"
Kai started laughing. "My sister wouldn't be -" He stopped. "She would have told me if you were."
A delicate knock sounded from the door just as Xander's insides lurched. Ling stepped into the room with a steaming tray of edibles, and the lurch quickly turned to hunger. What have you done? part of him wailed. Why couldn't you have kept it together? Why did you let them make you stop the tea? Everything is over now, you're done, you're never going to be able to stop again. But the only thing most of his mind could focus on was the scent of the food as she set the tray on the nightstand next to him.
"How are you feeling?" Ling asked. "Kai said you were hungry?"
"Yeah," he replied, trying not to sigh.
"Good. How about the dizziness? The pain? Any improvement?"
He realized that physically, he felt almost back to normal. "I...I guess that does feel a lot better."
"Any other symptoms, coming or going?"
He shook his head, but Kai spoke up. "His thoughts and his feelings are still a disaster. He's going to need at least two, maybe three more doses."
"Let me feel," Ling said, holding out her palm to Xander's head.
He flinched back a bit. Why does everyone get to know every goddamn thing that's happening to me but I'm clueless all the time? Realizing the childishness of his statement, he leaned forward to allow Ling's cool fingers to brush his forehead. Her lily aroma was thin and edged with rain again, and he thought for the first time that maybe his strange "gift" was useful, after all. She was tired, run-down, and he could tell. He concentrated on her scent and followed it through his nose and up into his head, behind his right eye, where he saw a swirl of pale blue with tinges of pale rose. The energy was moving clockwise in a somewhat sluggish but still elegant dance, and he realized that he truly was seeing energy now, somehow.
"Well, you're certainly improving, and not too quickly that it would be jarring," she commented, pulling her hand away. "But Kai is right. Let's give it about two hours, and then I'll brew up another dose for you and we'll see where that leaves us." She turned to Kai and squinted as the late afternoon sunlight fell across her pale face. "Do you mind staying with him? He'll probably be alright for a little while if you want to come down to talk with everyone, but I don't want to leave him alone for too long."
Kai rolled his eyes. "Please. I relish the chance for any break from my brothers I can manage. Besides, I should get to know Xander, don't you think?"
Ling pursed her lips, and Xander got the impression she was trying to hide the facial expression she'd wanted to make. "Of course. Well, then, you two get to know each other, and I'll be back up later." She made her way towards the door to leave, but then stopped and turned back to face him. "Oh, Xander, I brought you a cheese and spinach omelet, toast with butter, some hash browns, and cranberry juice. Cee mentioned that you like cheese and breakfast foods, so I hope that's alright."
"I, uh...y-yeah, that's...that's great," he sputtered, feeling hot blood rush to his face. "Thank you, Ling. For everything. I'm...I'm sorry...for all this."
He saw some of the tension in her face ease as she gave him a gentle smile. "You have nothing to apologize for, Xander. You're welcome."
"Why did you apologize?" Kai asked him as Ling pulled the door shut behind her.
Xander held the backs of his cool fingers against his cheeks. "Why shouldn't I?"
"Because Ling was right. You don't have anything to apologize for."
He let out a short bark of a laugh. "Sure. Look, you haven't been here that long. It's pretty obvious to all of them that they'd be a million times better off if they'd never met me."
"Hey." Kai's long fingers suddenly dug into both of Xander's shoulders and roughly turned his upper body to face the man, who peered into his eyes with an intense green gaze, brows furrowed. "That is the worst lie I've heard in a long time. My sister would be dead if you hadn't been here. You did that. You saved her from that...that thing." He swallowed hard, not releasing his grip.
Xander tried to look away. "I don't even...I don't even know if that was me. I have no idea how it happened. It couldn't have been me. And it was my fault -"
"Your fault? What was your fault? The only thing that was 'your fault' was the oh-so-tragic death of a piece of crap demon."
He gave up and just closed his eyes.
"Why do you do that?"
"Do what?" He fiddled with the comforter around him, checking again to be sure that all his bulging fat was hidden from view.
Kai finally let go of his shoulders and sat back down. "Refuse to see anything good about yourself."
Xander rolled his eyes but said nothing.
"Geez. Cee was right. You are stubborn."
His breath caught in his throat at the sound of her name, and he stared down to find his fingers clenched in the white fabric of the blanket.
"You know she's going to be okay, right?" Kai's tone softened.
Xander glanced at him, not moving his head.
"Physically, she's fine, just tired. The demon's energy absorbed most of the beating you gave her, and Ling and I took care of the rest. Right now she's just shaken up. She doesn't remember much, though, thankfully."
Then why hasn't she asked to see me? He felt his jaw clench and almost squeezed his eyes shut with the force of his frustration. You know why, you obese idiot. He lifted the tray of food from the nightstand and settled it on his lap and, with a slight, resigned shrug of his shoulders, began to eat.
He was so involved in scarfing everything down that it took him a moment to respond when Kai said, "Ling's a great cook, isn't she?" Even so, his mouth was full, so all he could do was nod as he chewed. This feels so good, he thought, why did you want to stop this? and before he knew it, the plates were empty and he was taking the last gulp of juice. A sudden weariness overtook him as he returned the empty tray to the night stand, and he stifled a yawn.
"I was wondering how long that would take," Kai commented. "Everything's catching up with you now; you're gonna be pretty wiped out for a while. You should try to sleep."
"So you can pretend to be a vampire stalker?" Xander quipped, but he felt his eyelids begin to droop.
"Exactly my goal. Try to get some rest, okay?" But Xander was already leaning back into the pillows, turning away from Kai and curling into the smallest ball his gut would allow, sighing as the world and his thoughts dimmed around him.
Yay! Xander's back!
I love you Undine...you just made my weekend!! :wubu::wubu:
All I can do is second the 3 Posters before me ..... thank you Undine!
Yay! Woo! Kai is awesome but he isn't as awesome as Undine for writing this! =3
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