Author's Note: Okay, this isn't exactly a sequel to "Blind Instinct" because a sequel would involve some end that I didn't tie up in the first part. Therefore, this is more like an extension of where that one left off. Does that make any sense? In other words, you need not have read "Blind Instinct" to understand what's going on in this one.
Summary: Continues where the epilogue of "Blind Instinct" left off. Actually, it starts about a month BEFORE the epilogue of BI. So, I'm kinda backtracking a little. Um... as you know if you read BI, Yuffie was pregnant in the epilogue and this kinda takes you through that. However, life isn't always "rainbows and butterflies" to quote Maroon 5.
Timeframe: About a month before the epilogue for "Blind Instinct"
[Disclaimer: The formal, first chapter disclaimer. I do not own Kingdom Hearts. I do not own the characters portrayed in this story. They all belong to their rightful owners of Disney and SquareEnix. So, therefore, please do not sue me for borrowing them.]
Chapter One: Surprise!
"I don't know what's wrong with me, Aerith," Yuffie muttered as she sat down upon the stone bench in the small flower garden the flower girl tended. Both young women wore a heavy coat wrapped tightly around their bodies and the younger of the two briefly wondered how her older friend was going to make these flowers grow in the cold November weather of Hollow Bastion. But, then she remembered that Aerith had told her the flowers she had planted thrived on cold weather.
Aerith looked up from the plot of soil she was aerating to look up at the ninja, worry written across her face. "What do you mean, Yuf?" she asked softly as she rose from the ground and dusted herself off before setting on the bench next to Yuffie.
Sighing, Yuffie turned towards her friend and pulled her feet up onto the bench as well, wrapping her arms around them and resting her head upon her knees. "I don't know. I've just been kinda tired lately... sluggish-like and kinda nauseous, too," she explained, sighing again as she did so. "I think I'm coming down with the flu or something."
The flower girl bit her lip and stared down at the ground while she tried to gather her thoughts. She wanted to get her wording right before she suggested to Yuffie what she was about to suggest to her. "Uh... Yuffie, you and Leon haven't been using any... uh.... protection, have you?" she asked nervously, trying to keep the blush from her cheeks.
Unlike Aerith, Yuffie couldn't fight the blush that crept up her necks and covered her face in a vibrant shade of red. "Is that really any of your business, Aerith? I mean, come on..." she trailed off when she realized what the flower girl was getting at. "OH GAWD!! You don't think... No, I can't be..."
"So, I take it you hadn't thought of that yet?" Aerith replied, quirking a chestnut eyebrow as she stared at her friend. "One last question. You're not late or anything, are you?"
Indigo eyes widening, Yuffie started adding up the days on her fingers. "Uh... what's today's date again?" she asked quietly, hoping that she was wrong about the date, wanting to be wrong about the date.
"November fifteenth," the flower girl answered, looking out across the flower bed and staring at the fields beyond the castle gates.
"Shit!" the ninja exclaimed loudly, dropping her head and beginning to beat it upon her knees. She stopped her self-abuse and dropped her head back down, closing her eyes and beginning to wonder what she was going to tell Squall and, more importantly, how she was going to tell him. He had never mentioned children. For all she knew, he'd be mad at her for this. But she had to tell him. This wasn't something she could keep from him.
Aerith's dulcet voice interrupted Yuffie's thoughts, causing her to look up at the woman with tired eyes. "I take it that you are late, then?" Not waiting for an answer, the flower girl continued on. "We don't know for certain that you're pregnant, Yuf. I mean, this could just be a flu you're coming down with and you could just be late this month. It happens sometimes," Aerith consoled, reaching out and rubbing the ninja's back. "I could do the rabbit test if you want me to."
Nodding, Yuffie dropped her feet back to the ground and slowly rose to her feet, taking a deep breath to steady her nerves as she did so. "Yeah, I'd appreciate that, Aerith," she mumbled as she started walking for the castle doors. "Um... I'm going to go back in for now. I have some that I need to do."
"Yuffie?" Aerith called, running up to her and placing a hand on her shoulder to help comfort her. "Everything will be okay, you know? Things happen for a reason, whether you're pregnant or not. Just don't do anything stupid, okay?" She dropped her hand from the girl's shoulder after giving it a reassuring squeeze. "And when you're ready for the rabbit test, just tell me."
The ninja nodded her assent and left the flower girl alone in her flower garden, just wanting to be alone for a moment to collect her thoughts. "What a way to celebrate my birthday," she muttered as she shut the door behind her and leaned against it, remembering that her seventeenth birthday was just in five days. "Gawh... sixteen years old and I'm pregnant?!"
Realizing that she had said that last part a bit loudly, she cowered and looked around the large room to see if anybody else was there. Luck was with her, though, as the room was completely empty. She assumed that Squall and Cloud were either repairing some of the upper rooms or exterminating the pests that had made their home within the Bastion walls. Yuffie also remembered that Cid had mentioned that he and Shera would be working on the electricity within the castle as it had begun to shut itself off occasionally, causing the occupants to nearly freeze during the night. Of course, all of them did have the comfort of sharing body heat with their respective lover.
"Argh! Focus, Yuffie! Focus!" the ninja yelled when she realized that she was letting her thoughts wander away from what she really needed to think about. But every time she did think about the fact that she was pregnant, her mind just felt so clouded... like there was a fog blocking out her thoughts to protect herself.
Slowly, she walked towards the large staircase and started up it, deciding that she would go lay down on hers and Squall's bed for awhile to try and think about it. Step by painstakingly slow step, she climbed the staircase, but stopped halfway up and let out a frustrated half-growl, half-scream. "I don't want to be pregnant, goddammit! I didn't ask for this! I'm only sixteen!"
A choked sob escaped her throat and she dropped onto the step she was standing on, not caring that she was crying in the middle of the staircase where anyone could find her. But no one did. And after all her tears had escaped and her eyes were dry, she got back up to her feet and finished climbing the staircase.
In the bedroom, she was relieved to find it empty like she thought it would be and slowly took her coat off, throwing it across the chair in the room. She lay down upon the bed and drew the covers around herself, curling up into a protective ball. She spent the next few hours simply lying there and staring off into space, still wondering how she was going to tell Squall.
Squall slowly turned the doorknob to the bedroom he shared with Yuffie, wondering if perhaps she was in there. He hadn't seen her since early that morning and when he had asked Aerith if she knew where his lover was, the flower girl had simply told him that Yuffie was feeling a little ill today. So, he had decided that he would check the bedroom to see if she had returned to bed.
And luck was with him, for upon entering the room, his gaze fell upon the small lump underneath the covers. He crept over to the bed and sat down gently, not wanting to make the bed shift too much when he did so. "Aerith said you're feeling sick today," he whispered, pulling the covers away from her face and brushing the ebony hair off her forehead.
Sighing, Yuffie slowly sat up, keeping her eyes downcast and staring at the jacquard pattern upon the burgundy bedspread. "Squall... I'm late," she muttered, finally lifting her eyes to stare into his.
"Late for what?" he asked confusedly, his brows furrowing as he tried to think of anything that she might possibly be late for. As far as he knew, she had had no engagements with any of the other residents of Hollow Bastion, but, then again, Aerith might have been expecting her for dinner or something.
"No, Squall... I'm late," she said again, dragging out the word 'late' and adding extra emphasis to it. She looked at him expectantly, waiting for him to respond.
"What are you talking about, Yuffie?"
Yuffie threw her head back and stared at the ceiling for a minute, trying to keep herself calm. "You know that monthly visitor I get... it's a week late," she finally said in exasperation, hoping he would get it this time.
Apparently he did as his stormy blue eyes became huge and rapidly blinked a few times. "Are you sure?" he questioned when he found his voice again, taking one of her hands in his and giving it a gentle squeeze.
"Well, I'm sure that I'm late if that's what you mean," she muttered sarcastically, looking down at their hands and intertwining her fingers with his. "Aerith said she would do the rabbit test for me whenever I wanted her to... to find out if I am pregnant or not." She kept her eyes downcast and refused to meet his gaze, afraid of what she would see if she did look into his eyes.
Seeing her nervousness, Squall reached out and gently cupped Yuffie's chin, forcing her to lift her head and look at him. "Yuffie, you know that I love you. And pregnant or not, I will always love you," he whispered, leaning over to place a soft kiss upon her forehead.
"You aren't mad at me?" she rasped, her eyes filling with tears as she stared at him. The look in his eyes told her that he wasn't mad, but she need reassurance... just something to tell her that his eyes weren't lying.
"Mad?" Squall asked in slight confusion, giving her one of his not-so-rare anymore smiles. "Why would I be mad at you? You didn't do this alone, you know." He let out a soft chuckle and moved his hand from her chin to her cheek, gently brushing away a tear that had fallen.
"I just... I just can't believe... I mean, you always used to say that the last thing this world needed was more of you," she sighed, remembering how he had always said he would hate to see anyone as hardhearted as him as she fell backwards onto the bed and staring at the ceiling.
Squall soon followed suit, laying beside her and drawing her to him with his arm placed gently across her stomach. "But, Yuffie," he whispered in her ear, brushing her hair out of the way, "more of you would be a good thing." Kissing the spot right below her ear, he saw a small smile come across her face.
Yuffie snuggled up against him, relief washing over her as she realized that he wasn't mad at her, that he actually seemed to want this baby even if she wasn't sure about it yet. She reached a hand back and rested it on the nape of his neck, playing with his mahogany locks. "You're so sweet," she murmured, turning her head to kiss his chin. "But what if he or she is like you?"
"Doesn't matter," he soothed, moving his hand beneath her shirt so he could trace light circles on her skin. "I'd still love both you and he or she. Besides, we can always hope my genes are recessive."
"Considering my tendencies, they probably are," Yuffie giggled, surprising herself that she could find something funny after being depressed for so long today. Sighing, she pulled away from Squall's arm and sat up, drawing her knees up to her chin and wrapping her arms around them. "Anyways, you wanna go downstairs with me and get some dinner? I haven't eaten since this morning."
Squall looked out the window and saw the endless night sky of the Hollow Bastion world, letting out a big sigh as he did so. "That was hours ago, Yuffie," he muttered, standing up and grabbing her hands to hoist her to her feet. "And I know your stomach. How did you manage to go that long without food?"
The ninja wrinkled her nose and quirked her mouth to the side, biting her cheek as she did so. "I wasn't exactly feeling too well. I mean, I was already nauseous and then I found out that I'm probably pregnant... that kinda ruined my appetite," she explained as she tiredly leaned against his arm, yawning as she did so.
Wrapping his arm around her shoulders, the swordsman led her out of the room and down the stairs towards the kitchen. "Well, I think Aerith was cooking some soup earlier," he told her as they descended the stairs. "If we're lucky, Cid and Cloud didn't finish it off."
"In other words, we're going to have to scrounge around in there for scraps?" she muttered sarcastically, knowing that both the blonde swordsman and the gummi pilot had horrendous appetites. Sure enough, when they arrived in the kitchen, the only thing edible they found were a few slices of bread and some cheese in the refrigerator, which Squall quickly made into grilled cheese sandwiches after he insisted she sit at the table while he did so.
After two days of anxious waiting for the rabbit test to be completed, Yuffie and Squall sat in the dining hall while Aerith did the last part of the test... kill the bunny and examine its ovaries, which had been injected with a small amount of the ninja's urine. Sitting sideways in her chair, Yuffie leaned back until she had her head lying in Squall's lap and he began to slowly run his fingers through her hair.
Hearing the door open, Yuffie jumped back up, nearly hitting her head on the underside of the table as she did so. "So... did you kill the rabbit?" she asked, wondering how on earth the gentle flower girl would manage to do so.
"No... I had Shera do it for me," Aerith answered, grimacing as she thought about the pitiful squeal the creature had made as it died, and then all the blood afterwards. "So, do you still wanna know the test results?"
"No, Aerith... I've decided that I really don't care if I'm gonna grow to the size of a whale or not," the ninja muttered sarcastically as she rolled her eyes and stared at her friend. "Of course I want to know." She felt Squall pull her out of her chair and onto his lap, resting his head upon her shoulder. The feel of his breath brushing against her ear made her squirm slightly, finally stopping when she settled down a little lower and his breath no longer went across the sensitive spot.
"Well, Aerith?" Squall asked quietly, just as nervous as Yuffie even if he didn't show it as much as his lover did.
The flower girl folded her hands in front of her and took a deep breath to steady her own nerves. "The results came back positive, Yuffie. You're pregnant."
Before Yuffie could say anything, Squall had jumped up with her still in his arms, turning her around in the process, and began to spin her around the room. He stopped before either of them became too dizzy, setting his lover down upon her feet and kissing her hard, his hands going down to her waist and pulling her tightly to him. Neither of them noticed when Aerith left the room.
Author's Note: Okay, chapter one of Lullaby... the quasi-sequel to Blind Instinct. Anyways, I hope you guys liked it and weren't too confused with the fact that I went back to before the epilogue of Blind Instinct...
Okay, so review for me. And for the readers of Honor Amongst Thieves, I am currently working on the next chapter of that.