requiems: (hope)
rems ([personal profile] requiems) wrote in [community profile] thisisyourstory2014-03-24 01:47 pm

Desert Nights

Title: Desert Nights
Author: [personal profile] requiems
Series: Final Fantasy XIII and Fire Emblem: Awakening, Dragon Haven verse.
Pairing: Hope/Lucina.
Characters: Hope Estheim, Lucina.
Rating: PG.
Type: Drabble.
Summary: Prompt: Hope/Lucina: one borrowing the other's clothes.

He wasn't certain when it had become a routine – and his mind so often connected the pieces, the dots, that it was strange how it hadn't done that – until right this moment, when it was alerted with a startling sureness that there was no one next to him.

He rolled over into the empty space that should have been occupied with a note of panic and surprise, and his eyes snapped open; why was she gone? She had most certainly been there hours before-

But Hope relaxed, letting out a soft sigh. Lucina was still there. Just awake, sat in his desk chair. Her hair was askew – she obviously hadn't bothered to adjust it after rising from the (no, his) bed – but her eyes were focused, from what he could make out of her face, lit by the waning moon filtering in from outside, and the pale illumination from the rune's surface. One hand was against that same surface, the other resting against her thigh, where Falchion's hilt would usually be. One leg, he noticed, was tucked behind the other, and though she looked relaxed and concentrated, she also looked poised. There was almost a regal air to it.

But, most of all, ready to go at any moment.

He briefly wondered if this was how she looked on many other nights when she went over stratagems and battle plans and maps and reports when she wasn't asleep, when she was supposed to be asleep. It seemed very far away from here, from the four walls of this room. But it was a part of her, always would be.

The sigh alerted her, and she turned to look at him with a fond, yet tired, smile. "I'm sorry. Did I wake you?"

"Yes and no." He didn't finish that sentence, didn't really need to give a why for the yes; it was a momentary worry in the lapse between sleep and awake. Nothing to concern himself or her with right now – right now they were together. That was the important part. Hope propped his elbow against the pillow, one hand against his head. "It's more companionable for more than one person to be awake."

"Maybe so," she said, rearranging herself to face him properly. "It's less frequent now, but... some nights are harder than others." She paused, giving a soft sigh of her own. "That there is no threat that could strike at any moment. It's easy in theory."

Lucina had spoken of this before; how neither she nor her comrades were the best at sleeping. A perpetual battlefield makes that difficult. He could understand that. Those nights on the Steppe, especially; even though they were nowhere near a lifetime's worth. And the more quiet ones, where he would work and mull through and toss ideas.

This was a quiet night for both of them, in comparison.

"You can always wake me, Lucina. I don't mind."

"Reading takes my mind off it," she admitted. "I wasn't planning on being long."

"Aren't you cold?"

Now that he put thought into it, she was wearing just a simple, light blue tank top with matching shorts, courtesy of Serah's instruction to the moogles. She had handed them over one day without so much as a word to the receiving party save you're staying over a lot, you should have these, you can't sleep in that all the time. Just another example of how everyone in the house knew what was going on. At first, Lucina had been a little embarrassed by it – as had he – but some things, you get over, especially when it meant falling asleep in each other's arms was a mite bit easier.

Still, he frowned. Nights in the desert were notorious for being far colder than their counterparts.

She shook her head, but she punctuated this with a sneeze, and that made him get up.

"No, Hope, it's alright, go back to-" but whatever she was about to say was lost when she noted something round her shoulders. Hope had deposited his jacket on them.

"At least wear this."

She didn't respond, other than pushing her arms into the sleeves – they were too long for her, so she rolled them up – and it buried her enough that she only did up the top button. "Thank you."

Hope was already back under the blankets (because, as he assumed, it was cold and he had just sacrificed his jacket for a higher purpose), but he smiled softly, reaching across the empty space for her hand. She took it. "Until you're finished. I might need it back tomorrow."

"I wouldn't dream of it." Even if it smelt of him, which it did, and that was comforting enough to chase away the reminders of worse nights so dark where there was no light at all. But she did have the real thing, only a metre or so away. "May I borrow it in the future, though?"

"If you have to," he mused, still watching her.

"Very well, then," she said, turning her attention back to the rune. "Goodnight, Hope."

"Goodnight, Lucina."

Sometime later, he felt the grip on his hand slacken, but he did not wake.

Later still – he wasn't sure how long – he was distantly aware of the cover moving as someone clambered in, and not just any someone, and soon enough, she was sleeping softly against his shoulder. Easy, quiet, peaceful sleep, as was his.

Far better than a jacket, Lucina thought.