by Jargonelle

Summary: 'When Guy held him and whispered 'Matthew' in the darkness, he lay still and did not shiver'. Matthew x Leila, some Matthew x Guy.

A/N: Warnings for non-pairing-related-random-flashbacks, melodramatic scenes in italics and my new love of all things Matthew. Oh, and for an ambiguous Lord Uther, an ambiguous past for Matthew and general all-round ambiguity. Maybe that should have been the title. (Oh, and also of course, a warning for slash. If such things are wanted.)

Disclaimer: I do not own Fire Emblem, but depending on how OOC you think everyone is, I just might own this particular slant on things.


When Guy held him and whispered 'Matthew,' in the darkness, he lay still and did not shiver in lust, anger or despair.

Guy did not deserve to be caught up in his deception.


"This, milord, is Matthew. He will be attending the upcoming festival upon my orders."

Lord Uther had barely glanced up from the map he had spread on his desk, but Matthew's recent lessons told him that was more than enough for Lord Uther to commit his face to memory and, if need be, condemn him a traitor in front of all of Ostia. "Looks a little scruffy."

"The work of a spy is not always glamorous, milord."

Lord Uther smiled then, thinly. It was the worn smile of someone who knew and had done too much. Matthew resolved to never smile that way if he could help it. "Indeed. But why is such a lad attending my prestigious banquet?"

"Milord, he is the younger son of..."

"Let the boy answer."

Matthew looked up sharply, and then tried to mask his surprise by holding his head high, adopting an arrogant pose. He knew that this was a test, the test even, of his cover. He probably knew too much to be left alive if he failed.

So he lied. He looked his liege in the eye, the older son of the Marquess, and he lied.

It would not be for the last time.


Guy deserved better. Guy always deserved better. Guy waited for Matthew to take things to the next level, both in their competition and in their relationship. Guy had morality, had decency. They cloaked him, as Matthew used the cover of the night to conceal his transgressions.

Who had ever heard of honour among thieves?


Matthew was used to being scorned.

His most common cover story was that of a thief, one, which did not usually endear him to the richer, nobler members of society. Instead, it was designed to attract the attention of rebels, of foreign spies from outside of Ostia's borders.

It was a holy day, a religious festival, and so the house he was entering was most definitely deserted, as the suspected family were attending the parade. Matthew deftly picked the lock, not wanting to leave any obvious signs of damage to the property and slipped inside.

He was always a spy, but sometimes he was a thief too; so he snatched a few gold pieces as well as the letters Lord Uther had requested.

The gold ended up in the hands of some bandits.

Matthew would do whatever it took to get the information he wanted.


Guy was not Leila.

No matter how close they grew, or how far they went, Guy could never be Leila.

Leila... Leila came with years of secret rendezvous and yearning and they had treasured every moment they shared, because, in the back of their troubled minds, they always knew it could very well be the last.

It did not make her death any easier to bury.

Leila came with plans, of dreams of a glorious life together.

Guy just came.


Matthew had just received his next orders: he was to assassinate the daughter of the Marquess of Santaruz, the Lady Vivian. He had never killed anyone so young before, he had never killed anyone so important.

"Do you really think that noble blood is sacred, is special? Do you see my blood: the blood that is failing my father, the blood that will one day fail my brother?" Lord Uther was angry.


"Security around her will tighten as it nears her coming of age. Make your way to Santaruz; make yourself invaluable to the ruling lord. Then, as close as you can to her wedding day, kill her."

"But milord, Lady Vivian is not even betrothed. It may be years until she marries."

"Correct. It will not be an easy task, but it is one I believe you can accomplish Matthew. Return having done the job and I will ensure that you are stationed here for awhile, maybe you could even shadow Hector."

"Thank you, milord." Matthew still had one question though, and it was not how his mission would help Ostia. "Who would you like blamed for her death?"


Matthew watched Jaffar fight, watched him obsessively and came to the conclusion that Leila must have made a hideous mistake to have been killed by him.

There was nothing Jaffar could do that Matthew could not.

There was nothing Jaffar had done that Matthew had not done too.

Yet Jaffar had been trained ruthlessly since infancy by Nergal not to feel emotion and Matthew had gone ahead and done the job despite his feigned normalcy.

Maybe it was not Leila for whom he should have cried.


It was Guy's clumsy attempts at consolation after Leila's death, which alerted Matthew to the change.

He thought, maybe, initially, that Guy had learnt something and was trying to manipulate the situation to his own ends, but Matthew was simultaneously disappointed and relieved to find that was not the case.

Guy was still Guy. He was still desperate to become the greatest swordsman in all of Sacae, still hurt by the way Matthew would routinely exploit people and would still linger over his tentative gestures of comfort for just a moment longer than necessary. He was becoming selfish though, in the way that only infatuation allows. He was, if anything, more naïve than he had been when he and Matthew had first met.

So Matthew accepted the overtones of something more than friendship, leading without appearing to do anything more than submit.


Guy could make him forget things, could let him pretend that the pickpocketing and backstabbing was just a game, just tricks used to best others in a friendly contest.

Matthew was good at pretending, usually.

So they would find their way to each other's tents at night, under the charade of continuing their 'competition', and would touch each other, normally in silence. Words were for the daytime, for public consumption, for dismissing, because anyone can lie with their words.

It was the actions that were important, like the way Guy would tremble when Matthew kissed him gently on his stomach.


He could not return to his family. Not, at least, for the foreseeable future.

They were leverage that could be used against him, both by the enemy and by the Marquess. Maybe though, one day, he would find someone he trusted enough to take to meet his parents.

He gave up his meagre birthright, gave up the chance to see his sister's children. He tried to lose his accent, tried to change the way he walked. He changed his clothes, he changed his hair; he changed everything.

"Excuse me, are you Matthew?" the sentry asked him, "I was told to expect you."

"I can be," he said with a wink, and then he entered the castle.


When Guy held him and whispered 'Matthew,' in the darkness, he lay still and did not shiver in lust, anger or despair.

Sometimes it just felt as if Guy's 'Matthew' was a different person entirely.

Sometimes it was too hard to respond, when his true loyalties rested elsewhere.


... he just wanted to go home.




A/N: Why does nothing ever turn out the way I plan?