Categories > Games > Final Fantasy 8 > Everybody Else's Girl


by Kadrin 0 reviews

Xu and Quistis, across the years.

Category: Final Fantasy 8 - Rating: PG - Genres: Romance - Characters: Quistis - Warnings: [!!!] - Published: 2005-05-06 - Updated: 2005-05-06 - 1032 words

A SeeD, Xu reminded herself, is calm and unruffled in any circumstances. She is near-impossible to faze. Everything she sees, she sees with an objectivity that approaches disdain. She certainly does not grow so used to her Faculty Assistant's quarters that she feels cramped and uncomfortable in the standard SeeD dorm...

"I'm sorry about this," Quistis said, shifting a chair in the gap between her tiny bed and the wall. There was really nothing else she could shift - her dorm was meticulously clean, even sparse. Xu had never even seen a book lying around, though she knew Quistis read voraciously and had borrowed over half of the Garden library over the course of her study. (She was always very punctual with late fees.) "I wish I could offer you tea, but the communal kitchen's being used and I don't think the kettle's been washed..."

"It isn't a problem," Xu said, smiling. "Besides, you'll be moving into a bigger place when you get your Instructor's licence, right?"

Quistis stopped moving for a moment, looking at the floor. "I'd rather not get my hopes up," she said.

How very Quistis of you. I don't know if that makes me happy because of how you it is or if it makes me worry because you're selling yourself short...

Quistis decided to neglect the chair she'd so carefully moved, and sat down on the side of her bed. Xu, not quite knowing what to say (/of course you've passed the test, of course you'll get that room, of course you'll get your licence, you're Quistis Trepe/),sat beside Quistis, and Quistis surprised her by leaning over and resting her head on Xu's shoulder.

"I can't stand not knowing," Quistis murmured, sounding almost too tired to say anything else. "Every minute I think about another question I probably missed. I wish they'd just come around and tell me I've failed."

"They won't," Xu said. As a trained SeeD negotiator, she could have lied instantly, brilliantly, utterly believably. And yet, she couldn't imagine lying then. It would have been... inexcusable.

And somehow, she found her arm around Quistis' shoulders, and Quistis resting her entire side against Xu. Even silent, it was strangely comfortable. Xu took a moment to wonder why she hadn't held Quistis before this... and then, almost selfishly, to wonder how long she could keep the moment going, how long she could keep Quistis all to herself, how long she could remain warm and comfortable in a cramped SeeD dormitory.

She didn't count the minutes, but when a knock came at the door, she thought that there hadn't been enough of them. Quistis extricated herself from Xu's arm, and walked to answer her door.

The visitor was a SeeD, somewhere between Quistis' and Xu's age, in full uniform and carrying an envelope. "SeeD Rank 12 Quistis Trepe?" he asked.

"I am," Quistis said, nodding.

The SeeD was well-trained - he only allowed his eyes to flick to the girl sitting on Quistis' bed once before presenting the envelope. "This is from the Faculty." He stepped back, and saluted. "Congratulations."

"Thank you," Quistis said, looking up. As the SeeD walked away, she closed the door behind him.

"Congratulations?" she asked, turning to Xu, and trying not to let any excitement show on her face.

Xu, unsurprised, stood to stand beside Quistis as she opened the envelope, pulling out the three sheets of thick paper within.

The writing on the first was short and to-the-point, as all Garden communications were: SeeD Rank 12 Quistis Trepe - This letter is sent to inform you that you have passed the Instructor Qualification Test with a score of 96%. Enclosed is your licence and replacement ID card. You must destroy your old ID card at your earliest convenience. With congratulations - Garden Faculty.

As promised, there was a card affixed to the paper, with the unsmiling photo of Quistis that she publically hated and Xu privately thought was beautiful, and printed besides it: /Quistis Trepe, Rank 12, Instructor/.

"Which are the other two papers?" Xu asked, and Quistis flipped the paper over with almost a hint of giddiness in her manner. From the very respectable SeeD Rank 12 Trepe - Instructor Trepe - giddiness was something entirely strange.

"One's from Headmaster Cid," she said, looking over it. "A personal letter of congratulations. It says I came highly recommended, that I'll be the youngest Instructor in the recent past, and that he's looking forward to seeing how the job suits me." She looked to Xu, smiling as if she should be laughing. "Is he complimenting me or saying he'll be testing me?"

"Cid is complimenting you," Xu said, with an answering smile. This was Quistis' victory, of course it was, but Xu felt as proud as if it were hers. "NORG is testing you. And you've already shown that you're more than up to the task."

Quistis did laugh at that, and then turned to the last piece of paper - gorgeously embossed, with calligraphic writing over it. "My licence," she said, looking at it almost reverently.

"You should have it framed," Xu said. Have it framed and put it on the wall above your bed, where anyone who enters this room can see it, and recognise that this is Quistis Trepe's room. You deserve to be able to show off for this.

"I will," Quistis said, nodding. She walked, very proper, over to the bed, and set down her precious papers, before turning back and asking, "Xu?"


"Would you mind if... may I..." She paused, trying to think of a way to better word what she was trying to say, and then visibly made a decision. She walked, still as careful and decorous as ever, across the tiny room, coming very close to Xu - Xu would almost have called it uncomfortably close, if it wasn't for the fact that it was quite comfortable indeed. And hesitantly, Quistis raised her arms, and put them gently around Xu.

The hug started polite and formal, the sort of hug exchanged on the street between acquaintances... and then, as if on a preordained signal, Quistis' arms pulled tighter, and she leaned against Xu with a sigh, and comfortably close was the perfect word for it.
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