Felix was not a drinker.
Partly due to his small size and partly due to a lack of experience with the activity, it took very little for him to become drunk, a state of mind that he actively tried to avoid. He often did unseemly things when he was under the influence, the worse of which has been when he accidently kissed Diana on the cheek, despite the fact that she had been seeing Larry at the time. After months of being unable to meet either Nicelander’s gaze, he had always made sure that it never went that far again. When the Nicelanders had a party, he was careful to stick to water or the occasional pop, keeping a watchful eye out for those who had visited Gene at the bar instead of partaking himself. On the days he left his game to visit friends, he would often lend a helpful hand to the characters heading home after a bout at Tapper’s, making sure that they arrived safe and sound despite their drinking-induced lack of inhibitions. Having seen what root beer could do to some of the larger, more tolerant characters in the arcade, Felix had, years ago, decided that it was not for him.
Yes, Felix was in fact very much so not a drinker.
However, his girlfriend and his best friend were, so ever since Ralph had gone game jumping, more often than he liked, their nights were spent at Tapper’s.
Normally he was good, nursing a single root beer throughout the entire time that the four of them were in the bar game so that, when it finally became time to head on home, his head was still clear as day. Along with Vanellope, who was barred from drinking due to her age, the two of them managed to keep Ralph and Tamora in line, making sure that anything that was destroyed was fixed and no one was accidently shot. Normally, he was he voice of reason, the responsible one, and so was careful with what he did.
However, after a thirty-six hour marathon of player after player playing, and losing, his game on its hardest setting for a chance to win a year-long pass of free gaming at Litwak’s without a single break, even he needed a little something to help take the edge off of his frustration and aching feet. So, while Vanellope pressed ice against Ralph’s healed but still sore knuckles, Felix drank whatever it was that Tamora put in front of him without a second thought, allowing the warmth of the drink to relax him.
For a brief moment, as his smirking girlfriend, who he knew had tried to get him drunk before so that she could see what he was like, put a fourth drink into his hands, a small part of his brain whispered that he should probably stop. Considering the fact that he had already drunk more in two hours than he had in almost thirty years, even more than he had when the ‘Diana Incident’ had happened, another part of his mind agreed with the first and told him that it was time for them all to go home.
The rest of him told those two parts to shut up and chug.
“Are you sure this is okay,” Vanellope asked as she watched the handyman finish another drink, his face flushed as he gently swayed in his chair, eyes glazed as he stared at something over her shoulder. “He’s going to be sick in the morning.”
“Ah, he’ll be fine,” Ralph said as he waved one of his bandaged hands, a laugh partly interrupting his words as his friend looked into the bottle, surprised that it was already empty. Signaling to Tapper, it was only moments later that a new drink was brought, the barkeep fighting to keep a smile off of his face as Felix eagerly accepted it. “The arcade’s closed for the next few days while Litwak decides who won the contest, so he’ll have more than enough time to sleep it off. Besides, that hammer of his can work miracles; I should know.” Shrugging sheepishly at the look the princess gave him for that statement, it was just in time to keep Felix from falling from his stool that the wrecker turned, his large hand steadying the man before he could hit the ground.
“Eighty’s game logic,” Tamora snorted as she finished her final drink for the night, holding up her hand in refusal as Tapper offered her another. With the one adult member of their party that normally stayed sober giggling as the bubbles of his root beer tickled his nose, she had figured that it would be in all of their better interests if she restrained herself, though watching her boyfriend’s antics, she could not say that it was an imposition. He was cute when he drank, she decided, and although she normally respected his wishes when it came to things like this, it had been too good of an opportunity to pass up. “Relax Princess, I’ll make sure Short Stack’s fine,” she said with a shrug, smiling as Felix twisted in his seat to face her, “though I have to say I’m impressed that he’s still upright. Didn’t know he had it in him.”
“I’ve got a lot more in me than you think, Ma’am,” Felix said as he leaned against the table, his words surprisingly coherent considering the amount he had drunk. “I’m…I’m Fix-It Felix, the hero of Fix-It Felix Jr., and you know what?”
“What,” Tamora asked with a smirk as she leaned closer to him, wondering what it would be that her boyfriend told her this time. He had already confessed his greatest secrets to her, from the fact that he had never really like cherry pie- the most common kind in his game- to his belief that he had loved her from the moment she had first tried to shoot him. With more than enough blackmail to make things extremely interesting between them for quite a while, she was curious as to what else the handyman had left to say. “Tell me.”
Leaning forward, his love-struck smile widening as the honey glows in his cheeks deepened into a dark, brilliant red, Felix, in a voice loud enough for half the bar to hear, complied with her request.
“I think…I think I wanna…I think I wanna marry you.”
“And that’s where we cut you off,” Ralph said with an awkward laugh as he glanced around the suddenly silent bar, the look in his eyes slowly prompting the onlookers who had heard Felix’s proclamation to restart their own conversations, though their topics had changed to the drama that was happening in the corner behind them. Accepting that that was the most privacy that they were going to get, Ralph reached over to take the bottle of root beer from his friend, his eyes flickering between the swaying handyman and the stunned sergeant as he did so. “I’ll just take that and we can all go ho-“
“No, Ralph,” Felix said sharply as he slapped the larger man’s hand away, his first frown of the night crossing his face. Draining the root beer, it was with a glare that he dropped it back onto the table, allowing it to roll away as he addressed his co-worker. “I’m…I’m serious here.” Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out a little black box and placed it on the table, his next words directed at Tamora once more. “I really think that I want to marry you.”
“I have for a while, you know,” Felix cut in, smiling up at her, adoration clear within his eyes as he rambled on, arms waving around as he continued to speak. “Since our third, no, second date I’ve thought that I wanted to marry you.” Dropping his hands into his lap, completely unaware of the spectacle he was making and the look on Tamora’s face, Felix finally asked the question that he had been heavily hinting towards.
“So what do you say, Tammy? Will yah marry me?”
After a few minutes of silence, it no longer mattered what Tamora was going to say because, stunned as they all were, none of them were able to move fast enough to catch him as Felix finally lost his balance, fell to the floor, and passed out.
“Mod,” Tamora quietly swore as she scooped her boyfriend up off of the floor and left, Ralph throwing a handful of coins onto the table and retrieving the still closed little black box as he and Vanellope followed the woman from the bar. Boarding the train that would take them into the Game Central Station, for a long while the three said nothing, the quiet broken only by the soft sound of Felix snoring as he cuddled against Tamora, completely unaware of the situation he had left his friends in. Glancing at the item he still had in his hand, Ralph, after a moment of contemplation, sheepishly handed the box over to the irate space marine, figuring that the damage had already been done. In fact, the only one still conscious that seemed undisturbed by their circumstances was Vanellope, a small smile on her lips as she stared at the Sergeant.
“You never answered him, you know,” she finally said as the end of the track came into view, glitching from her spot on Ralph’s shoulder so that she was standing before the older woman. “You really should.”
“I am not going to accept the proposal of a drunk handyman,” Tamora snapped, shifting Felix’s weight in her arms so that she could stuff the box that her fingers had been playing with for the last few minutes into her pocket, miffed that the evening had turned out the way it had. It was her own fault for getting him drunk, she accepted that without a fight, but the fact that he proposed while that drunk had caught her off guard, and Tamora had never been one for surprises. “Besides,” she huffed, stepping out of the cart as it pulled to a halt, “I don’t have an answer.”
“I think you’re lying,” Vanellope sang slyly as she glitched back onto her normal spot, a smirk on her lips as a flush colored Tamora’s cheeks.
“Shut it, Princess,” Tamora muttered as she turned towards Fix-It Felix, Jr., her back stiff as she ignored the younger girl’s giggling. Then, before either of her friends could say another word she left, cursing just loudly enough that Ralph was forced to cover Vanellope’s ears, his own glare at the retreating woman tempered by a laugh at her antics.
He had to admit that it had been an interesting night, that was for sure.
The next morning, when he awoke to a pounding headache, swollen tongue, and a set of fuzzy memories that he prayed to the Moderator were just a dream, Felix was reminded all over again why, exactly, he tried to avoid drinking.
When Tamora walked in carrying a glass of water, his hammer, and wearing the ring he had bought almost six months ago but had been too afraid to give to her, Felix realized, much to his horror, that the events of the night before had not been a dream, but he had really and truly done everything he remembered.
“Tammy,” Felix croaked out, swallowing thickly as he forced himself to meet her gaze, “I am so, so sor-“
“Felix,” Tamora cut in, a smirk on her lips as she forced the glass into his hands and leaned down to kiss him, stopping his apology before it could even really begin, “just shut up and drink.” Twirling his hammer between her fingers as he complied with her demand, it was only after he had finished the water that she tapped him on the head, erasing the pain as well as if it had never been there to begin with. Raising her hand to cut off the words he had been about to say, it was with a shake of her head that she pulled a list from her pocket and dropped it on his lap, throwing an explanation over her shoulder as she left to go prepare herself for the day.
“You can make up for your lousy proposal by figuring out that guest list. I don’t even know half those characters, so you’ll be the one writing, and hand delivering, their invitations.”
Felix had never been a drinker, but for the one night he actually was, he could not say that the consequences had been that bad.