Fan Fic: Those Lacking Spines
Once upon a time, in The World That Never Was
, at an indeterminate time of day
, Xaldin, Vexen, and Lexaeus encountered a monster that was destroying the Organization by taking their... you know
. Immune thanks to them being "ugly" (a teenage fanbrat
is in control and clearly doesn't realize that Lexaeus is MANLY
), these three nobodies embark on a world-hopping journey to save their comrades, battling the gutless and countless pop culture references,
in an attempt to restore logic, sanity and good humor to the fanfiction universe, all while protecting their groins from assault
by the Semes. Who are kind of like The Heartless
, but instead of hearts, are disembodied, um... you know.
Yes, really.Those Lacking Spines
is a Kingdom Hearts
fanfiction written by Gexegee of Organization VI
. As a Meta Fic
, it parodies just about every aspect of bad fanfiction. Xaldin, Vexen, and Lexaeus race through alternate universes
, and encounter a wide variety of Fanfic Tropes
, including Slash Fics
, High School AUs
, Self Insert Fics
, Song Fics
, Cross Overs
, Crack Fics
, and Canon Defilement
, while keeping the plot of Gutless
changing the remaining members of Organization XIII into shadows of themselves
. Along the way, it viciously lampoons several other franchises, lovingly mocking everything under the sun in a brilliant, hilarious (and sometimes long-winded) romp through fanfiction itself.
A 4th anniversary Dramatic Reading
of the fanfic has been started
by the author.
- Added Alliterative Appeal: The V for Vendetta reference.
- Animate Inanimate Object: Xaldin's sideburns.
- Apathetic Teacher: Ms. Larxene. She spends almost all of her screen time flirting with the class' parents, or explaining to the class why they will never amount to anything.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The heroes have landed on the City of OC, subverted the Mary Sue's intimidation power, easily destroyed Marly-dono's prospective army, and are about to storm his lair. "Agh! And they're throwing their unconscious bodies into my beautiful rosebushes! THOSE WERE RAISED BY HAND, YOU BASTARDS!"
- "Organization XIII was not a nice group of sort-of-kind-of-former people. They toyed with minds, they twisted relationships, they used lives as tools, they manipulated innocents, they spread chaos, they captured hearts, they lengthened the lines at the DMV and they commanded Heartless."
- As Long as It Sounds Foreign: Parodied; a lot of characters have vaguely Japanese-sounding gibberish for last names.
- Attack Pattern Alpha: “Let’s attempt Maneuver 35, shall we?”
- Author/Character Filibuster: Forgivable on the basis of being awesome.
- Author Avatar: Not just Gexegee, but the rest of the writers of Organization VI as well.
- Gexegee does deserve special mention, though. She appeared on the GSS Existentialist completely randomly, shouted from the ship's bedroom for Xaldin to bring in the whipped cream, and then got thrown out into space.
- Badass Boast: Jeffiroth's, though lampshaded by Xaldin and Lexaeus.
- Ballroom Blitz: Aku-chan interrupts Destiny Sanctuary Peak High School Academy Grammar School's Spring Fling Formal Prom Hop to create Gutless out of the student characters. The protagonists interrupt his plan right back.
- Berserk Button: As Vexen clearly enunciates, “Nobodies. Do not. Have. Hearts.”
- Zexy-poo does NOT listen to Savage Garden!
- The first is Hilarious in Hindsight, as according to the later installments in the games, Nobodies do actually have hearts; Xemnas was lying and manipulating them to believe otherwise in order to create Kingdom Hearts.
- Big Bad: The Grand Master Fangirl.
- Big Damn Heroes: Xaldin, Vexen and Lexaeus are rescued from the Mary-Sue Gutless by the revived Larxene.
- Big "NO!": Happens fairly often. Riku does this, not once but three times in the High School A.U. chapter.
- Big Red Button: The button to the BETA.
- Xuxastell also pushes on, thinking it would make her the first Nobody with a heart in Chapter 5. It turns her back into Larxene instead.
- Bishōnen: As a type of Gutless.
- Bizarrchitecture: The floating second darkest tower in Vacillating Heights has a basement... despite the lack of earth to house such a basement.
- Bland-Name Product: Mostly averted by giving the actual names of products, but one chapter has a computer with a 'Macrohard Exceed' program.
- Bold Inflation: Doubled, with Jeffiroth (JEFFIROTH). "He was so Badass his font was bolded."
- Bowdlerise: Parodied with the Gutless' name. Vexen "was going to call them the Nutless, but Disney put their foot down. Some nonsense about not scaring the children and lawsuits, something about a VHS cover or something."
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: "The Saïx we recruited is stoic, collected, and mildly psychopathic with a sadistic twist."
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Too many times to count.
- Brick Joke: The time of day in The World That Never Was, Jeffiroth's choir, pages of blank verse.
- Brown Note: "I can't see. I cannot see. My retinas have committed suicide."
- Camp Gay: Marly-dono and almost all of the Ukes.
- Cerebus Syndrome: The first ten chapters poked fun at all of the clichés and themes in the Kingdom Hearts fandom while having what is little more than an Excuse Plot; the next two ramp up the seriousness of the plot (if there was any to start with) while keeping numerous pieces of snark.
- Chekhov's Gag: The time of day in The World That Never Was.
- Chekhov's Gun:
- Paris Hilton's new single
- Fishy crackers
- Xaldin's sideburns
- "A betta." (Beta)
- Cliché Storm: A good portion of the worlds in Fandom Hearts the protagonists visit invokes the extremes of fanfiction genres for humor.
- Cliff Hanger: The end of chapter eight has one, and various events in the following chapter lampshade the pointlessness of these expectedly dramatic buildups.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Demy-kins, who fittingly rules over the Crack Fic half of Vacillating Heights.
- Confusing Multiple Negatives: Prominent from the author trying to explain a Nobody's lack of existence/non-existence.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: Vexen is tortured by listening to the LazyTown cake song. Originally they tried It's a Small World After All, but one of the Required Secondary Powers of a "Part-Disney" character includes an immunity to Disney songs.
- It may also qualify as a Mind Rape for Vexen.
- Couldn't Find a Pen: The inscription of the second-darkest tower and the extremities of the Pyramid Head expy in Vacillating Heights is actually written not in red nail polish, but in magic marker.
- Crack Fic: Vacillation Heights changes between this during the day and Dark Fic at night.
- Creator Cameo: All of Organization VI appear in some fashion, but Gexegee (the actual writer) deserves special mention. She wrote herself in as calling for Xaldin from the bedroom, asking him to bring more whipped cream, and then being thrown out into space.
- Curse Cut Short: “Oh shi-”, despite the prevalence of non-cut curses.
- A Date with Rosie Palms: To a video of a bee pollinating a flower. It's Marly-dono, people.
- Deadpan Snarker: Lexaeus takes this role, despite the fact that Vexen is one in canon. Then again, this fic isn't known for its adherence to canon...
- Death Is Dramatic: Zexy-poo asks for a dramatic death. He doesn't get to complete his speech before he is turned into a purple blob of you-know.
- Deconstruction Fic: It's hard to wonder what this fic doesn't deconstruct.
- A Degree in Useless: Ms. Larxene has a doctorate in philosophy, but learned too late that all it qualified her for was teaching language arts at Destiny Sanctuary Peak High School Academy Grammar School.
- Department of Redundancy Department- Coupled with Purple Prose, descriptions of Copycat Sues describe colors as cornsilk yellow platinum amber blonde and sapphire cobalt aquamarine cornflower silk lily midnight blue.
- Designated Villain: In Inept Crossings, Lexaeus meets Inuyasha, who is baffled as to why Lexaeus doesn't want to antagonize him, and in fact, orders him to do under the fear of Inept Crossing's ruling Semes.
- Deus ex Machina: The DEM engines.
- The Dragon: Mansex.
- Dramatic Wind: Lampshaded in the text, describing it as improbably slow-falling and dramatic.
- Duck!: Inverted, as The Llama Song reference ends one verse with the animal, though when applied to the giant, shapeshifting llama-thing the protagonists encounter, Vexen exclaims "duck" to warn of the giant blade that is just about to swing over their heads.
- E = MC Hammer: Vexen scribbles on a chalkboard in this manner to explain his two theories of how Xaldin and Roxas remained safe after the Reset Button.
- Emo Teen: Zexy-poo.
- Fake Brit: Brought up in-universe in a discussion on Xaldin's English and Vexen's Japanese voice actors. The main trio go off figuring that arguing about their voice actors is silly.
- Failed Attempt at Drama: Xaldin and Lexaeus both attempt to provide dramatic exposition once. The other two members of the trio are not impressed.
- Fan-Art: Yes, Fan-Art of Fan Fic. There are fan comics, a fan book cover, and a fan cosplay Shout-Out to Those Lacking Spines.
- Fauxlosophic Narration
- Gratuitous Japanese: Pence's lines, which deviates into Gratuitous Spanish.
- Great Big Book of Everything
- Groin Attack: The weakness of a Seme.
- Hand Wave: Many events that would seem otherwise illogical or unbuilt are subjected to this, or ignored for the purpose of plot.
- Well, it is a fanfic, snarking about the sheer stupidity of other fanfics. Just go with it.
- Heartbreak and Ice Cream: Zexy-poo comforts himself by eating Ben & Jerry's ice cream after an exaggeratedly melodramatic fit toward Demy-kins.
- Heel-Face Turn: The Semes, at the end.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Xaldin performs this (instead of previously severing the Gutless-infected part of his body) as a result of activating the BETA.
- High School A.U.: Parodied, along with everything else.
- Hilarity Ensues: Frequently (mostly to Vexen's chagrin).
- Hypocrisy Nod
- Hypocritical Humor
- I Broke a Nail: Marly-dono, when he slams his fingers on a keyboard, exclaims this.
- I Need a Freaking Drink: By the end of the fic, Xaldin asks for “Vodka. Top-shelf. Straight. On the rocks.”
- If I Had a Nickel: Lexaeus laments over the idea that fanfic writers get the idea that he can’t talk in first person, muttering about a dime for each instance.
- Impact Silhouette: Mansex escapes the blast of the combusting Yaoi Cannon through one of these.
- Impossibly Cool Weapon: Jeffiroth gets a seven-foot-long katana. As per usual, this is lampshaded.
Unfortunately, a seven-foot katana, while cool-looking and certainly intimidating, is just not all that practical for a battle. Jeffiroth was able to attack with it, mostly by spinning around in a circle with his arms stretched out and hoping it would nick Xaldin, Vexen or Lexaeus enough to make them give up their unceasing barrage of wind, ice, earth and stabbity-type attacks.
- It's even impractical for self-use.
Unfortunately, a seven-foot long katana, while badass and certainly intimidating, is just not all that practical for seppuku. What followed was a ten minute display of Jeffiroth trying in vain to impale himself on a sword that was taller than he was, in full view of his choir and Nobuo Uematsu.
- Incessant Chorus: Speaking of Jeffiroth, his chorus sings "Jeffiroth!" every time someone says his name. It even continues many chapters later.
- In Medias Res: Chapter 10 starts this way, goes back, and ends the chapter at the same time where it originally started.
- Insistent Terminology: Xaldin has braids, not dreadlocks. Do you know what you have to do to your hair to get dreadlocks?
- It Was a Dark and Stormy Night at Castle Midnight Moonraven McGee. Then again, it usually was.
- Japanese Honorifics: Most of the semes get one.
- The Joy of X: Final Bossing For Fun and Profit
- Also, "Toadying For the Final Boss For Fun and Profit"
- Interactive/Lemony Narrator
- Little Professor Dialog: Lampshaded by Lexaeus on the Grand Master Fangirl’s speech.
- Large Ham: Zexy-poo has quite a few moments out of the Semes, who overall act like this during the twelfth chapter.
- The Long List: In Inept Crossings... note
- Lower Deck Episode: The point of having Xaldin, Vexen, and Lexaeus be the protagonists is because they are obscure enough by fanfiction writers to be ignored by the Gutless.
- The Man Behind the Man: Rather, the fangirl behind the seme.
- Morph Weapon: Out of all things, Demykins’s razor-sharp ukulele.
- Most Common Card Game: In the first chapter, Demyx finds himself losing to Luxord at Go Fish.
- Never Say "Die": Xaldin actually states himself that "the Organization never says die!"
- Which makes it even more hilarious when Larxene appears and (literally) does say "die" just seconds later.
- Nominal Importance: Francesca, who out of all the Moo Gutless, survived.
- Not in the Face!: Marly-Dono asks this of Larxene and the main trio after they corner him. She reassures him that it won't be in the face.
- The Nothing After Death: Present as a White Void Room, unlike the Cessation of Existence as the Nobodies think.
- Oh Crap! There Are Fanfics of Us...: Let's say it's the motif.
- Ominous Floating Castle
- Ominous Latin Chanting: Jeffiroth's 100-piece orchestra includes this in its music, followed by an echoed “JEFFIROTH!”
- One-Winged Angel: Jeffiroth, in his second form, turns into a seven-winged one (though he's easily beaten).
- Only Sane Man: Xaldin, Vexen and Lexaeus all qualify.
- Ordinary High-School Student: Gexegee points out this trope as being all too prevalent in fanfiction.
- Original Character
- Otaku: As a type of Gutless.
- Overly Long Fighting Animation: As part of Jeffiroth's second form transformation.
- Overly Long Name: x-x-Marley-dono CrImSoNfLoWeR-x-x''. (sic)
- Parody Sue: Sakura-Rose Sunblossom Orange Juice Annie-Marie McFate
- Also Xuxastell, who was created by putting Larxene in a machine that sueifies everyone and everything.
- The Password Is Always Swordfish: The password in the factory isn't simple, but it is stupid (as described in-universe), being a list of all of the Semes.
- Perverse Sexual Lust: Gexegee for Xaldin, in her brief appearance in one chapter.
- Pimp Duds: Homie X Luxory wears them.
- Playing the Heart Strings: Coupled with Left the Background Music On.
- Plot Hole: The story seems to span the length of a day (or at least, some short period of time), yet one of the Semes says that he and the Grand Master Fangirl had been conspiring for months to spread the Gutless to the canon world.
- Power Gives You Wings: The remaining energies of the Yaoi Cannon, when the Big Bad unlocks them for Mansex, gives him wings among... other garish outfit changes.
- And Jeffiroth. While it is true that he went through a machine that turns him into a Mary Sue and that made him look like Sephiroth, he still got a one wing resembling Sephiroth's when he first came out. When he ascends to his second form, he gets six more one wings. Don't ask us how this is possible.
- Power Makes Your Hair Grow: Inverted with Jeffiroth: Hair Makes Your Power Grow. And when one attacks said hair...
- Precision F-Strike: Vexen executes one in chapter 12.
- Prepare to Die: Against Xuxastell:
“Nevertheless,” Lexaeus still had his fierce gaze locked on the imposter Nobody as he pulled his tomahawk up out of the ground. “Larxene is our comrade-in-arms and we will not stand for what you have done to her. In the name of the real Organization XIII—prepare to die.”
- Pungeon Master: Demykins, with highlights such as 'give peas a chance', 'liver let die', and bringing up a betta (beta).
- Reference Overdosed: It is impossible to list all of them.
- Relax-o-Vision: Double-subverted. Right when the protagonists are about to test their theories on Xiggy-kun, the narrator announces to switch to a description of kittens, but since she has no kittens, she switches the plot to the second line in-waiting.
- Riddle Me This
- Rule of Funny
- Running Gag:
- Vexen's phobia of cake.
- “Did you just go there?”/“I rather think I did.”
- Xaldin was wrong.
- The little known facts about Demyx the pizza boy.
- Xaldin's sideburns.
- The time of day in The World That Never Was at the beginning of the fic. It becomes a Brick Joke by the end, though.
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness
[Vexen said], “Don’t be so worried, gentlemen. We can utilize a Gelatinous Confectionary Transportation Vehicle.”
“You mean a gummi ship,” Lexaeus nudged him in the elbow.
- Seven Minute Lull: In Destiny Sanctuary Peak High School Academy Grammar School, Riku accidentally flubs and reveals his bet with Sora after a song finishes in a party. Melodrama ensues.
- Shaggy Dog Story
- Direct references:
- Vexen is described as resembling Galadriel from Lord of the Rings.
- Characters are described as having clothing from Hot Topic, wearing Axe body spray, and the like.
- The author figures that the song at the end of the High School AU world's Spring Fling Formal Prom Hop is "Graduation (Friends Forever)" by Vitamin C.
- The narrator suggests that Sakura-Rose has a great deal of knowledge on Orlando Bloom's acting career.
- Humphrey Bogart certainly pales to Jeffx in romance.
- LazyTown, Stargate SG-1, Laguna Beach, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Heroes, InuYasha, Dragon Ball Z, Naruto, Sailor Moon, MacGyver are all mentioned in passing.
- The choices of movies mentioned in The World That Never Was are The Little Mermaid, Moulin Rouge!, and Evil Dead 2.
- Music(ians) referenced are Queen, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, Janis Joplin, Within Temptation's "Angels", Gerard Way, and Savage Garden.
- Demykins's new outfit is described as Labyrinth-era David Bowie-like.
- Indirect references:
- In the first chapter, Zexion Waxes Lyrical from My Chemical Romance's "Helena".
- In the High School A.U. world, Finding Nemo, of all things, gets a shout out: Sora's ridiculous last name in Chapter 2 is "Wanahakaruugi".
- Later in Destiny Sanctuary Peak High School Academy Grammar School, Silent Hill 4 is referenced with Xiggy-kun's apartment room being right next to Henry Townshend's.
- Pence blabbers Styx's "Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto" among other musical references.
- Even later in the High School AU world is a reference to the Black Eyed Peas's song "My Humps".
- In the suburbs of the City of OC, Xaldin, Vexen and Lexaeus meet in a Sanford & Son's Hardware and Biology Supplies Ltd store.
- Jeffiroth references Darkwing Duck and Breakin' Two (Electric Boogaloo), as well as being one big parallel to Sephiroth.
- The dramatic reading sticks an aptly dramatic sample of Young Frankenstein's music in for Jeffiroth's orchestra, better known from the meme "dramatic prairie dog."
- Inept Crossings is chock-full of these, as it is a world of crossovers. Inuyasha, numerous references to Final Fantasy, a Disney canon (The Emperor's New Groove, DuckTales, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), Western Animation/Bonkers, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Harry Potter, etc.
- Demykins makes offhand mentions to Katamari Damacy and I Love Lucy among the randomness he mentions.
- Vexen's torture sequence is one very long Shout-Out to this YTMND.
- The unseen world of "Voreland" is most likely a reference to this MST a Sora/Riku vore fanfic.
- Vacillating Heights's description mentions the Infinite Monkey Theorem, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, Pyramid Head, Cheese, The Llama Song, Céline Dion (and Titanic).
- Some of the chapter names are shout outs to Avril Lavigne, Nirvana, Bob Dylan, The Beatles, Linkin Park, Queen, and Elvis Presley.
- Festivus was mentioned in chapter 12 as the event Zexion cooked dinner for.
- Zexy-poo parodies LEAVE BRITNEY ALONE once.
- The final 'movie' at the end of the story is dubbed "Axel and Larxene’s Funniest Home Videos".
- The numerous 'sequel lists' reference Breakin' Bad, Star Trek, Star Wars, and Marvel Zombies.
- Demykin exclaims, "Man, I Feel Like a Woman " (original phrase from Shania Twain) after being regenerated.
- Shut Up, Hannibal!: Several times.
[Sakura-Rose:]“You’ll never defeat me, you hideous beast, because I represent all that is pure and good and light in the world, and YOU are an evil creature with no heart and I have a heart and it holds nothing but love for ALL LIVING THINGS! And you’ll never be able to scare me, either! My will is as strong as stone!”
“Really?” Lexaeus asked lamely, and with the slightest movement of his hand, Sakura-Rose was crushed to death beneath two tons of irony
and a gigantic summoned slab of rock.
- Also twice with Jeffiroth: the first time with a 'get on with it' and the second by snapping his Badass Locks off.
- Significant Anagram: Xuxastell, which, as Xaldin quickly figures out, unscrambles to "Axel Slut," or "Axel Lust," if you insist.
- Slept Through the Apocalypse: Roxas, though not out of pure chance.
- Solve the Soup Cans
- Spell My Name with an "S": Invoked to get a horde of Otaku Gutless to tear each other apart over whether to use Aeris or Aerith (or Vincent/Binsento).
- Sssssnaketalk: Sssssecks ssssspeakssss thissss way.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: The Riku from Destiny Sanctuary Peak High School Academy Grammar School totally isn't gay or anything.
- Take That
- Tempting Fate: Quite often on behalf of the protagonists, and lampshaded all the time.
- That Came Out Wrong: Quite a few of Mansex’s lines give this effect to the protagonists.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: After suffering through the cake running gag for the majority of the fic, Vexen gets to kick back and relax in a comfortable lounge in Chapter 10 instead of having to fight hordes of Bishonen Gutless like Xaldin and Lexaeus.
- Third-Person Person: Jeffiroth.
- Time Bomb
- Title Drop: “Nine Organization members, whole and lacking spines, shouted in unison.”
- Also (kinda) in chapter 10:
It was unfortunate for the Grand Master Fangirl that this sickly little idea was not any ordinary idea—it was a being that lacked a brain, a heart, a spine and most importantly, it lacked… you know.
- To Make a Long Story Short: Twelve chapters too late.
- Averted slightly in Chapter 1. Gexegee, when describing where they found Vexen, uses the phrase, "To make a long story shorter" instead.
- To The Bat Noun: Marly-Dono exclaims "TO THE EXPERIMENTAL CHAMBER!" to Xuxastell.
- Trade Snark: Overly Detailed Purple Description Mode™
- Transparent Closet: Riku.
- Traveling at the Speed of Plot
- Troll Fic: Originally intended to be one, but completely subverted after.
- Unusual Euphemism: "...you know" isn't very unusual, but its absolute pervasiveness throughout the fic makes it stand out.
- The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: They have a checklist of tropes that fall under this category:
"Let's go through the checklist," Xaldin suggested, one eyebrow raised high over the other as he examined their surroundings quizzically. "Dark skies?"
"Check," Lexaeus nodded.
"Foreboding, overly complicated architecture and/or some kind of ruins?"
"Indeed," Vexen confirmed.
"Epic-sounding technopop and/or metal music in the background?"
"Cryptic clues and references to the end of things, and/or excessively pretentious area names?"
"We have stepped into the Haven of Wasted Epiphanies," Vexen announced, reading from a convenient nearby sign. "Up ahead is the Village of Twisted Thoughts and the Subdivision of Broken Endings. Triple check."
"Yes. I thought so," Xaldin sighed. "This is a Final World if ever I saw one."
- Videogame Settings: As the exposition describes, the barricade Lexaeus and Vexen form in front of the darkest tower makes the building resemble an Ice Palace.
- Viewer-Friendly Interface
- Wackyland: The day half of Vacillating Heights is described this by name.
- Wall of Blather: Jeffiroth's poetry rants in this comic.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Vexen is terrified of cake after being tortured with the LazyTown cake song.
- Word Salad Humor: DemykinsOMGWTFBBQVCR's dialogue, when he's not spouting Shout Outs.