Author's Notes: So this is me avoiding my other two writing projects. I meant to do something silly and cute but instead... well it's this.
The airport was swarming with people and Erza stood on her toes to see over the heads around her. She didn't want Jellal to think her late or that she'd forgotten – not that he'd assume she'd forget about his flight.
A steady stream of travelers began to file from the plane and the crowd slowly thinned. Erza watched as families and lovers were reunited, sometimes tearfully, and her heart clenched in her chest. Where was Jellal? She waited impatiently with steadily rising anxiety as the last passenger strode from the jetway. Attendants sealed off the area and Erza was left standing alone in the now emptied terminal. Fighting off tears, she clumsily pulled her phone from her bag and checked the email once more – she knew she hadn't been mistaken as she'd checked the itinerary at least ten times since leaving home.
Flight 1176 Arriving at Gate 16B 4:25pm
Her eyes slowly dragged over the gate number printed on the nearest wall placard to confirm she was indeed standing in front of Gate 16B. Still refusing to succumb to frustrated tears Erza approached the customer service desk.
"Excuse me, but I'm waiting for someone who was supposed to be on Flight 1176 and he never... is the plane really empty?"
"I'm sorry but yes. I can check the name for you, though, if you want," the attendant offered helpfully.
"It looks like Mister Fernandes never boarded the plane. I'm sorry for the mix-up."
Erza's heart dropped down past her stomach. "No, it's fine. Thank you for checking," she choked out. She debated with herself before sending Jellal a text message. Surely if something had held him up he'd have let her know! It wasn't like him to be inconsiderate. Something must've happened. Something bad.
Her thoughts spiraled into a million worst case scenarios before she finally sank into a chair. Erza was surrounded by empty chairs and the sight of row upon row of them finally cracked her shell. Fat, hot tears fell down her cheeks. She swiped angrily at them but eventually they overwhelmed her. The uncontrollable nature of them aggravated her further. Sobbing in public wasn't something Erza did often but damn it she'd been looking forward to Jellal's return for an entire month!
With a shaky grip she attempted to unlock her phone again. She needed to send him a text message and find out if he was okay or if there'd been a delay. His commanding officer sometimes had little concern for the personal life of his subordinates – even when it came to previously approved leave. Erza hated the man.
Droplets of tears fell onto the face of her phone and prevented her from properly entering the password. Erza huffed and tossed the phone to the chair next to her and hid her face in her hands. Everything was ruined and she couldn't even get herself together enough to send a text message. Pathetic.
"I believe this is yours," a soft voice said from directly in front of her. Erza sniffled and looked at the hand holding out her discarded phone. She gasped and launched herself from the seat and into the waiting arms of the man who'd spoken.
"Jellal," she whispered into his collar. Her tears began to fall again and dampen the fabric of his uniform. Erza clung to him tightly and tried to calm herself.
"I'm so sorry," Jellal murmured drawing his fingers through her hair soothingly. "I got on the wrong flight. I'm so, so sorry."
"I thought you'd forgotten or something had happened or –" her voice shook and she couldn't even bring herself to be embarrassed. That line had already been crossed.
"Erza, I would never not come home to you. My phone died on the way to the airport and I'm just so sorry. I'm sorry." She tightened her arms around him indulgently one more time before finally pulling away. Jellal cradled her face and wiped her tears with his thumbs. "Are you upset with me?" he asked.
"No," Erza replied with a sigh. "I'm just glad you're home. It's been a hell of a month."
"We have plenty of time to talk about it. I'm all yours for the next three months, at least." Jellal smiled at her and Erza couldn't help but smile back. She leaned up before he could protest and kissed him. All of the anxiety that had taken up residence in her chest melted away. "Come on, I'll take you to dinner. I'm starving."
She took his offered arm and leaned her head on his shoulder as they made their way through the terminal. Her heart soared with the knowledge that she wouldn't be sleeping alone, but in the back of her mind she knew three months wouldn't last forever.