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Back to Balamb
Chapter 8 - Seifer thinks and Squall drinks
I was feeding Juil some greens and water when I heard a knock. I looked at the clock. It was only ten. "Been a long day, hasn't it, Juil?" She let out a "Wark" and I tickled her behind her ears. Well, where her ears would be…. Can't really see birds' ears.
"Who is it?" I called.
"It's me… Kevin," came the voice behind the door.
"Hang on, Kev!" I got up and ran to open the door. "C'mon in. What's up?" I asked, looking at his thoughtful expression.
"I just wanted to ask you who Rian is."
"Oh. Rian was Squall's latest boyfriend. Why?"
He shrugged. "I ran into Squall and at first he thought I was Rian. He looked kinda scared." Seifer stopped. "Huh? Squall's latest boyfriend?!"
"Mm-hmm." Hmm. Could Seifer actually like Squall?! I studied him. "Yeah, you do kinda look like him. And he would be scared of Rian." I walked back over to the bed where Juil was contentedly finishing off the greens.
"Hmm? Why what?" I asked, confused.
"Why is Squall scared of Rian?" He said patiently.
How much should I leave up to Squall to tell him? Best not to say too much. "Um, Rian kinda abused Squall before they broke up." I noticed a flash of anger in Seifer's eyes, and something else. Ooohh! Seifer does like Squall!! I should totally set them up! They would be such a cute couple! I silently squealed at the picture that made.
"Abused him how?" was all Seifer asked.
I shouldn't say any more. Plus, maybe Seifer will go ask Squall himself! I mentally let out another excited squeal. "He should be the one to tell you about that," was all I said out loud.
"Alright." Seifer walked toward me. "Night, Selph." He hugged me and gave me a peck on my forehead. "Night," I replied, hugging him back. He opened the door and left. I yawned. "Time for bed."
Hmm… so Squall is gay. I closed Selphie's door and began walking down the hall to my room. And he's apparently had more than one boyfriend. I felt a sudden ache. I've had such a crush on him for… a very long time, anyway. Though I only admitted it to myself after time comp. Could, would, Squall ever like me? No way. I've done so much bad shit to him. Bullied him, teased him, tried to kill him while under Ultimecia's command. I've never had a chance and never will. I unlocked my door, walking in and closing it behind me. I stood in my room and hit my head on the door a few times.
People have always thought that I'm confident, arrogant, conceited even to the point of narcissism. Truth: Hell, no, I'm not. It's a complete act; so ingrained in my actions that it's almost like a second personality. I'll be the first to admit that it's a defense mechanism. I've read the psychology columns; I know being abandoned is the root of all my problems. Well, maybe not all my problems, I admitted, picturing Squall.
A hand on my shoulder woke me up. "Wha-" I gasped, and shot up quickly.
"Shh, it's just me." Squall.
I looked at the clock, digital letters glowing red in the dark. Eleven-thirty. "What's wrong, Squall?"
"I don't want to talk about it now. Maybe in the morning. Could I sleep here tonight?" His breath smelled faintly of vodka. He had been drinking maybe an hour ago.
"Yeah, sure," I said sleepily as I moved over to make room for him in my bed. I felt him settle in next to me. "Thanks, Quis." Then he was out like a light. I rolled over and went back to sleep. No sense worrying now.
Squall was still asleep when I woke up. I gently got out of bed and took a shower. I put on a robe and was drying off my hair with a towel when I went back into the bedroom to pull open the shades. He rolled over. "Morning." I said. He groaned and put a pillow over his head. I've always been a morning person. I went into my kitchenette and made some instant coffee. A few minutes later I was pulling the steaming mugs from the microwave and walking back into my bedroom.
"Sit up," I commanded. Reluctantly he sat and took the offered mug. I sat next to him and took a few sips of my own.
"I don't know how you can like this liquid crap," he bitched. Meaning the instant coffee.
I just shrugged. "What happened last night?"
He sipped his "liquid crap" for a couple more minutes. I waited. He'd answer my question eventually. "I was sitting in the rest area of the training center, thinking about Rian. Seifer came in. I thought he was Rian for a moment. I mean, he was holding a spear! Y'know, pole weaps are Rian's area of expertise." I nodded. "Anyway," he continued, "Seifer saw me crying and saw my scars. He felt sorry for me, Quistis!"
Men and their big egos. "So then what happened?"
"I ran away. Went to a bar in Balamb, got crocked out of my gourd, walked back, and woke you up." I sighed. Why do guys always think drinking will help them with their problems?
"You ran away because of more reasons than Seifer feeling sorry for you. Why?" I gently prodded.
He stood up and stretched, being careful not to spill his coffee. Blinking, he stared out the window. "Y'know I don't like him seeing how weak I am." I silently looked up at him, not buying that that was the only other reason. He sighed. "He's gay, Quistis."
"Well, duh." I replied, borrowing a term the cadets used often. "So? You're hardly in the position to be homophobic. You like him, don't you?"
He winced, verbally refusing to respond. "You've always liked him. Loved him, even. It's so obvious." I rolled my eyes. Men, I thought again, So afraid to admit they care about someone else. They would all try to make you believe that all they care about is themselves.
"How obvious?" He turned toward me, afraid.
I shrugged. "I knew. Selphie probably does. Matron knows you both love each other; maybe not in a romantic way, since we were all so young when we left. Maybe Zell." I watched as his eyes widened a bit. Enough teasing him. "Don't worry. Only people who've known you two most of your lives can tell. Yet," I finished slyly, winking at him. His ears colored. Okay, now that's enough teasing him. "We won't tell anyone," I rose from the bed and hugged him.
"I must get ready now, okay?" I pulled away as he nodded, and opened my dresser. "Out!" I shooed. Squall grinned, wagging his eyebrows salaciously. I lightly smacked him, and he went out into the living room.
I heard the dorm door open from my bedroom. "Squall?" I ran out. The brunette was slinging his dark leather jacket over the back of the couch. "Man, where've you been? I was all worried and shit." I bounced from foot to foot, punching the air a little bit.
He shrugged. "I was in Quistis' dorm."
"What?!" I punched his arm, "No way, man! You expect me to believe that you were with Quistis all night?!"
"Not all night. I went to a bar, got pretty smashed, walked back to Garden, and crashed in her room."
"In her room? She's the headmistress; isn't that illegal or somethin'?"
He smirked. "Nida does it."
"Okay, fine. So nothing happened." I said, believing him.
"Besides, I'm gay anyway."
"I know that. Go change your clothes. They're all wrinkled."
"What, so you're the Balamb Garden fashion advisor, now?" He snorted, looking at my usual denim shorts and Hawaii-print shirt open over a wifebeater. Of course, I was wearing my favorite red kicks with the laces untied.
"Damn straight." He went into the bathroom and closed the door. I heard the shower being turned on. "We're meeting the gang for breakfast in half an hour!" I shouted over the water. I heard a muffled reply.
"See ya!" I walked out into the hallway.
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