Set at an unspecified point in the game before any…unpleasantness happens. You know what I mean ;) XD No spoilers. Rating will increase in later chapters.
My first Final Fantasy fic :3 Oh, and for the record, Noctis is my sleep hero. Naps for the win! XD
Love this game. Love this fandom. Love Promptis. Let's see how this goes! XP
Noctis probed his fingertip into the corner of his right eye as subtly as he could. Between his wayward dark fringe and the setting sun's piercing hot rays, his eyes were watering, blurring his keen vision.
He managed to knuckle away the dampness and squint out across the bay of Galdin Quay, where a swollen sun was sinking into calm waves, the sky a mess of burnt oranges and pinks. Adjusting himself where he perched atop the Regalia's hood, he breathed deep of the briny evening air and picked idly at the newly-applied decal on the bonnet. He thought the flames looked cool. Ignis had scowled and declared them 'unforgivably tasteless.' Still, he had been outvoted, and the bright, fiery motif had been applied liberally to Noct's pride and joy.
The Prince stifled a yawn, and rested his chin upon his palm, gazing out at the hypnotising swell of the sea. They had completed a couple of arduous but well-paying hunts today. Whilst he was pretty psyched that they had some spending money, for the moment he felt like the perfect culmination to the evening would just be to sleep.
He managed all of about three minutes of shut-eye when he was rudely nudged in the bicep, the force nearly overbalancing him onto the sun-warmed tarmac of the car park.
Staggering to stop himself falling, he winced at Prompto, who had given him a fond punch to get his attention and was now fidgeting energetically on the hood beside him, a dazzling grin on his face.
"Noct! You're such an old man. C'mon, we have to go sight-see, no naps for you."
"Ugh," Noctis responded eloquently, taking a deep breath of cool, salty air and rubbing his eyes, managing to force himself onto his feet and something approaching wakefulness. He peered through his long hair at Ignis and Gladio, who appeared to be interrogating the arms seller nearby about his wares, their arms crossed and expressions intense as they pointed and nodded variously at the weapons in the back of the truck.
"We're finally here! C'mon, let's go explore," Prompto was urging him excitably, pulling on his arm. "Guys! We're gonna check out the beach!" He yelled at the older members of the team.
Ignis looked round, adjusting his glasses with one gloved hand. "Don't stray too far."
Gladio turned too, grinning fiendishly. "Behave, you two."
"Yeah, yeah," Noct waved noncommittally, whilst Prompto bounced ahead, pointing to the tiny pier on the beach.
"Wanna fish? It's been…at least an hour since you last caught something," the blond teased, cackling.
Noctis let it slide, though he did eye the spot for later consideration. "Hm…actually, I'm kinda hungry."
"Well, if you're not sleeping or fishing, you're eating. I had a one in three chance," Prompto grinned, scuffing his way along the beach and pulling out his camera, adjusting dials and buttons to accommodate the lowering light.
"Hey, what is this, 'Bully the Prince Day?' You're a terrible friend," Noct smiled, closing his eyes in pleasure as a rogue breeze gusted in his face, bringing a few tingling specks of sand with it. He was halted by a sudden insistent call from Prompto, who beckoned him into position near the main pier and then darted about to try and get a good angle.
"Do a pose. Like, try and look hot."
"I always look hot," Noctis shrugged coolly, running a hand through his hair, indulging his best friend.
"Ah, yeah, hold it! That's awesome. Hang on, just one more…"
Thirty-one photos and a slight detour later, the pair of them finally entered the stunning building at the end of the pier, the sun had finally set in a bruise-purple sky, and the temperature had agreeably dropped, cool enough to birth goosebumps and little shivers every now and then. They had passed Ignis and Gladio perusing the ingredients and medicines at the quaint little stall on the pier, and naturally, the other two men had been roped into posing for a couple of snapshots.
"It's so pretty," Prompto cooed, looking about himself in awe.
Noct nodded and hummed in agreement, taking in the sumptuous atmosphere, the tinkling of glassware and crockery, the cosy ambient lightning, the modern and clean décor. Mumbles of collective speech and laughter from the patrons was a soothing soundtrack, as was the eternal swish and groan of the ocean beneath them.
"And they have real beds in real rooms. Score!" Prompto chuckled, holding up his camera again for a few rapid shots.
"And we can actually afford it," Noctis mused laconically.
"Yup, we're loaded! Let's order the most expensive thing on the menu."
"…You know it won't be fries, right?" the Prince teased.
"Oh please, Mr. Veggie-phobic. You're in no position to make fun."
"…Point taken," Noct rubbed at the throb in the base of his neck that had been quietly pestering him since the hunt, attempting to squeeze out the stiffness in his spine, to no avail. The sea breezes weren't helping much. "After you, civilian."
Prompto giggled and gave him an affectionate shove, proceeding to lead the way.
Not long later, they were tucking into seafood risotto, Prompto nodding enthusiastically and making the most obscene noises of satisfaction around mouthfuls of rice and clams.
"S'amazing. Ignis is gonna flip when he tastes this. Hope he can copy it."
"He can copy anything," Noctis pointed out with a grin. "Well…nearly," he added, thinking wistfully of those unattainable cream cakes from his youth.
The blond cheerfully gazed around the restaurant, which bordered the rooms for rent. The entire scene was beyond luxurious to him.
"Like what you see?" Noctis asked him, surprised he hadn't already fished his camera back out for more opportunistic photo-taking.
"Definitely," Prompto nodded hard, starting to point at the far end of the building. "Let's go check out that side afterwards. I bet there's a fantastic view!"
Noctis grinned warmly, his friend's eagerness as endearing and contagious as always.
The Prince and Prompto were making their way to the back of the restaurant, full and happy, when Noctis paused, gesturing.
"…They have beds outside. That's weird. Why would you want to sleep in front of everyone?"
Prompto narrowed his eyes in the right direction, and then chuckled helplessly. "Noct, seriously? That's for massage. Look," he offered, drawing the other man's attention to a posh-looking poster on a nearby wall.
"Yeah. You must have had one before? After all your training sessions, didn't you have armies of pretty palace ladies to rub you down afterwards?" Prompto laughed.
Noct shrugged. "Dr. Neros would give me the once-over if I was actually injured. But he was most definitely not a pretty lady," he grinned, blushing faintly.
"Oh man, you have to go try it. Go on, it'll be fun."
"Me? Why not you?" Noctis spluttered.
"I'm the photographer. It's my job to record it for posterity," Prompto assured him solemnly, but with a sparkle in his eyes.
"Yeah, you'll do it. I'll be your moral support!" Prompto beamed, giving his cheesiest grin.
"Fantastic. I'll tell him to prepare the royal bed." The blond laughed, trotting off towards the well-appointed row of sleek massage beds, low-lit and admittedly looking very comfortable. Prompto was already turning his camera back on. Noctis didn't know why he ever bothered turning it off.
Gnawing briefly on the knuckle of his thumb, Noctis grudgingly followed his friend, murmuring to himself.