A/N: Jude/Tsunpal is my second favorite ship from this game. Not even joking.
For those confused by who Tsunpal is, (which I'm going to assume is 97% of you) it is a nickname I have given to an NPC that can be found in Leronde. If you take the time to talk with him, it's ridiculously obvious that he is tsun tsun for Jude, so I have decided to write this collection of Jude/Tsunpal one-shots based on all the lines that he has to say in both the first and second game. I do hope that you will enjoy this ridiculousness.
This Chapter Was Inspired By:
"Jude, you're such a dumbass! What were you thinking, sneaking into the fricking mine like that? Next time, you come by and get me first, all right? We'll do it together, you dolt!"
Tsunpal swore under his breath as his stormy parade through Leronde's main street dissuaded anyone from asking where he might be going or what might be wrong. Although if anyone did bother to ask, the most they would likely have gotten out of him was a string of angry muttering with perhaps the mention of Jude somewhere in the jumble of rage.
Jude was being a goddamn idiot again, just like all those times in their shared childhood when he would use his own well-being as a bargaining chip so others would be able to escape whatever happened to be bothering them. This time though, he was putting himself on the line for the vague entity known as Elympios that had just been thrust onto every Rieze Maxian.
Of course, Tsunpal was certain that in Jude's perspective of the situation, that issue was his fault, which meant that it was also his responsibility to correct it. Even though his anger continued to seethe dangerously close to the boiling point, Tsunpal couldn't prevent the slightest smile from sneaking onto his lips - sure, Jude was a bigshot who had run off to the city and gotten entangled in some globe-trotting, two-world-saving adventure (if Leia's account was anything to go by), but underneath it all he was still do-gooder Jude who had a penchant for getting in situations over his head.
A do-gooder who was once again willingly throwing away his own well-being for the sake of others without a second thought.
The signs that Jude was going to pull something like this had been present since the moment the ship bearing him and Leia home had docked in the harbor a week earlier. Even though both his mother and father has advised against it, Jude had taken himself off bed rest only a few days after his homecoming on the grounds that his injuries weren't as bad as they had appeared. Additionally, rumors of Jude's interest in spirit fossils was known to the whole of Leronde within an hour of him posing his first query. With that knowledge in addition to his self-compiled, long running mental list of all the stupid things Jude had done (along with a tally system to ensure that the list didn't run too unmanageably long), it didn't take Tsunpal long to figure out where the suddenly missing Jude was headed.
As he approached the edge of town that lead of the Felgana Mines, his suspicions were immediately confirmed. Barely managing to bite back the desire to tell him off from a distance, he watched Jude give a furtive glance to each side and adjust his grip on the pickaxe in his hands. Mentally, Tsunpal added a tally mark next to the 'running off into the abandoned, monster-infested mine' section of his 'Ways in Which Jude is a Complete Dumbass' list, but he also made sure to note the additional stupidity of 'while still injured from saving the fricking world'.
Still several steps behind the younger man, he watched as Jude's shoulder slackened and an audible sigh of relief escaped his lips. Any rage that Tsunpal had managed to suppress until that moment bubbled immediately to the surface - the punk thought he was actually going to get away with it!
"And just where in the hell do you think you're going?"
The tension immediately came back to Jude's posture accompanied by a full body flinch and a clumsy attempt to hide the pickaxe from sight as he spun around. The look on his face spoke of his guilt so loudly that it was already drowning out any attempts Jude might make to defend himself.
"Uhm... hey?" he finally decided upon after an overly pregnant pause, his tone marking the utterance as a question more than anything.
"It's obvious that you're trying to go to the mine again, so don't even try to hide it."
Tsunpal watched as the look on Jude's face changed from surprise to guilt to determination all in a manner of seconds. The pickaxe was produced from behind his back, but rather than giving it up, Jude held it tighter to his chest. He steadily held Tsunpal's gaze as he began to speak.
"Don't try to dissuade me from going," his voice was level and calm as he continued on, "Spyrite research is critically important and spirit fossils are central to that goal. I need to go see if there are any usable samples left within the mines."
"Except you're still recovering from your injuries you dumbass. You're going to reopen all the wounds on your hands and that's only going to make the recovery process take even longer. Come on Jude, I thought you were going to school to learn this crap!"
At the mention of his injuries, Jude did his best to hide the medical dressings on both his hands. However, the flinch of discomfort that he made as he moved did not escape Tsunpal's notice.
"See? You're already making faces like it hurts like hell and you haven't even used that pickaxe yet."
"I already told you and everyone else that they're not as bad as they seem. Besides, I can hold my own against a few monsters."
"Do you remember the last time you went to the mine? You're not even smart enough to take Leia with you this time!"
"Leia's busy helping at the Lodge. Besides, she's still recovering."
"Oh, so Leia should just stay home and recover like a good patient but Jude the dolt is perfectly fine to run off on his own into the mine?"
"I just plan to do some preliminary scouting today, nothing strenuous enough to open any wounds."
"Gah! You're so fricking frustrating you stubborn asshole! Fine, if you won't listen to reason, there's only one option."
Moving quickly enough to prevent Jude a chance to react, he grabbed the pickaxe from his hands, slung it over his shoulder, and pushed him out of the way. Without breaking stride in the slightest, he began to head down the path that lead to the Felgana Mine. Behind him, Tsunpal heard a few utterances of bafflement from Jude before he hastened himself to make up the few steps that he had lost to his confusion.
"Just what are you doing?" Jude asked as he fell in step with Tsunpal.
"I told you to come and get me next time you went to the mine, didn't I? Well I'm pretty sure this is next time."
"I guess...but do you even have any combat experience? The only fighting I ever remember you getting involved in ended up with you in the clinic for a week."
"Shut up!" Tsunpal replied, his cheeks flaring red, "That was one time! I know enough about fighting to jab the damn monsters in the eye with my convenient pickaxe weapon and to grab you and run like hell when you keep trying to play hero."
"Why do I get this feeling that I'm the one who's going to end up having to save you?" Jude said, another sigh escaping his lips but no further protests being made. Silence settled between the two of them as they wove their way towards the mine, avoiding monsters along the way. It wasn't until they were at the entrance to the mine that Jude spoke up once again.
Tsunpal made no reply, instead heading into the darkness of the cave to hide the dark blush that suddenly colored his cheeks. He also made sure to add the umpteenth tally next to the 'Jude thanking me when he doesn't need to' entry on the ever growing list of dumbass things Jude had done.