Disclaimer: I don’t own Artemis Fowl.
AN: This story was earlier known under the name “The price of a life (draft)”. I wanted to rewrite it, but inspiration wouldn’t come. But then I got an idea, because the main reason to rewrite it was because it didn’t fit the title, so I just changed the title. It may not be the title I wanted, but it fits.
So, I hope you enjoy and review!
Artemis stepped out the bus and walked down the street. He just came from Argon’s clinic, and was now on his way to visit Holly. He did that a lot these days; he would come from a session with Argon and then drink some tea with Holly.
Artemis sighed as he thought about the sessions. They were making progress, but it went slow. Artemis was no longer obsessed by numbers or paranoid, but there was this little problem…
‘Hey, watch your step, Artemis! I would like to arrive by the princess in one piece.’
Exactly, Orion was still there. Argon had said, that in order to make his alter ego disappear, he would have to work along. But Orion wasn’t too fond of disappearing. Right now the sessions were just hours of discussion with Orion, trying to convince Orion and make an agreement.
But the best idea at the moment was that Artemis would spend more time to poem writing and reading.
He shook his head, not now. Tomorrow they would work on it again, now was tea-time. He knocked on the door.
‘No one ever sees me as a person. I’m a creation of the mind, a sickness or a problem. Not someone with feelings. But I am, and I do live.’
“But please, sit down,” Holly said.
He accepted the invite and sat down. Holly walked into the kitchen to get some tea.
‘It is not that I have such a problem with dying, and I understand that people see me as a problem. It’s not my life I care so much about, but the things and persons I’ll leave behind. I can’t just leave my fair lady alone, or Artemis, who still has a lot to learn about life, like how to treat others.
So, as in every proper fairytale, he’ll have to make an offer. But what to ask, what to ask? What’s the price he has to pay?’
Artemis leaned back and closed his eyes, rubbing his temples. He was still thinking about the Orion-matter, when his alter ego himself popped up in his mind.
‘I finally know what I want.’
‘The day I fell in love with Miss Holly? Oh, I remember it so well. I’ve always been charmed by her, that’s a fact. But being in the underground of Artemis’ head, there never really were sparks. And then came that day.. Artemis was only half-conscious, so I was paying a bit more attention. My fair lady was so brave, saving Artemis from a gorilla, though of course it should’ve been the other way around. She took him in her arms, healed him, and then a soft, tender kiss. Artemis was weakened, and has forgotten that feeling, but to me it always stayed in my mind.’
Holly entered the room again, carrying a tray. She saw Artemis and frowned.
“Artemis, please,” the elf sighed, “it’s rude to go off and talk to people I can’t hear.”
Artemis opened his eyes and looked at her.
“I know that it bothers you, Holly. But wait just a little bit. I think we found a solution.”
Holly looked surprised, but didn’t say anything and sat down on the other couch, so she was facing Artemis, who closed his eyes again.
‘I can’t leave just leave them, but if I ask something that’ll teach Artemis, and protect the princess, I can go with a resting heart. ‘
‘What is it that you want?’
‘Sigh.. Don’t tell me you want to kiss Holly.’
‘No. I want you to kiss her.’
‘Artemis never really had that kiss. If he would have, he would know why I want to protect her. If he’ll kiss her, he will know, and the lady will be protected.’
‘You don’t need to tell you kissed her. Just don’t say I did it either, because you’re not supposed to lie to her.’
Artemis got up with a sigh, and sat down next to Holly. She turned to him, and he looked in her eyes.
“We’ve come to agreement,” he said formal. Holly rolled her eyes.
“If you say it like that, I somehow know that it involves me, and that I won’t like it.”
“I’m afraid you know me too well.” And he leaned in, and kissed her. Holly froze, not kissing back, not pulling away, knowing that it was necessary, and thinking she was kissing Orion.
‘I must go now. Goodbye, my love.’
Artemis slowly parted.
“He’s gone,” he said, partly to Holly, partly to convince himself.
Holly nodded, “Good.”
The rest of the time they didn’t speak about it, just some light chit-chat.
‘Thank you, Orion, for making me understand. And don’t worry, I’ll protect our lady.’
And somewhere, deep inside Artemis’ mind, someone smiled, and then faded away.
He wasn’t needed anymore.
His fairytale had ended.