-Chapter 2 of my Last Exile Story

-Glad people are reading it! In fact, this story has more hits then my Inuyasha story! Granted, it wasn't until recently did this story get the same number of reviews as my Inuyasha story, and have anyone have it on their favorites list (my Inu story got TWO people on the favorites despite fewer hits, used to be three but I'm not going to dwell on why I lost one…), but again, when you consider that the Inu group is more 'popular', having this story have more hits has to mean something!

-As for this story being M rated later on, you could pretty much bet on that! And it won't be because of the violence like my other M rated story (actually, it moved up due to the um, sexuality, but the violence made that rating a certainty). Hehehe. After all, the last part of the first chapter was just the beginning! In fact, it would mostly likely become MA rating if I dare try! MA of course, not allowed here at FFN. Still, this story will remain here, even if it's the 'censored' M rating here. That means, if you don't like the idea of a lemon, good news, just keep reading this story at FFN. Otherwise, I'll put the uncensored story at Adultfanfiction dot net. In fact, a version is already there (just that, well, it really isn't any different then this one yet given that it still falls in the T, maybe M rating here. I still think it is T, but given the language and the matter, it is definitely borderline). I might even put it at MediaMiner later. But right now, you will find this story here, and at AdultFanFiction.

-Also thanks for those that think this a great story! I normally don't write these kinds of angsty, mostly drama, little 'violent' action, and…possibly…lemony stories (I keep saying that it isn't a certainty, but given that I've gotten this far, what's a little further?). Since this isn't my normal writing style, I was concerned about whether it would be good or not. So, thanks for the support!

-Without further ado, on with the story!

Road Outside Town

Claus was sprinting across the dusty road trying to get home as fast as he can. Why? He wasn't entirely sure. Although he was certain that it had to do with what happened between him and Alister.

He stopped a half a mile away from his home and kneel over in order to catch his breath. 'Why?' He glanced back towards the town behind him. Images of Alister flooded his mind. He started to lightly shake as he remembered what happened in her room. He then touched his lips as he remembered her soft lips. He remembered how nice they felt against his. He then looked at his hand as he remembered the feel of her soft bare skin. 'Was it love? Or, was it something else?'

He then looked up down the road towards his home. "Damn! I'm now more confused about what I feel then before!" In fact, he was dreading going home right now. "Okay Claus, what am I going to say to Lavie? She wants an answer!" His mind kept going back to Alister. "But if I say something now…and it wasn't what I really feel…and what happened between me and Alister didn't mean anything…no…it meant…it…" He closed his eyes and clinched his fist. "I…I need more time!"

Claus leaned against a wooden fence. The cool wind blew through his hair. Behind him, the wheat field made waves as the wind passed through their stock. He again turned back to his home. The longer he thought about it, the more hopeless he felt. "I can't just stay here all night." Claus took a deep breath, and started walking towards his home. 'Maybe, maybe she and Al were still at Mullen's place. They said that they were visiting them…'

Alister and Tatiana's Home

Alister had not moved from her position since Claus left. She didn't even fix her dress as she still held onto it for dear life. She was very conflicted in her heart. On one hand, she felt very warm inside, and chided herself for not 'forcing' Claus to stay with her. On the other hand, she felt extreme guilt for, instead of helping Claus, she basically 'took' advantage of him. 'But, if he didn't feel anything, why did he react?' It wasn't until she heard the front door opening did she break out of her daze.

"Alister, I'm home!" Tatiana slammed the door shut behind her. As she looked back at the door, she realized that the door was not locked. Granted, this was a small safe town and they really had no reason to lock it. Still, given, particularly Alister's fear of their home being breaking into, or something even worse, they had kept the doors locked since they first moved into town.

"Eep!" Alister squeaked as she was startled by the sudden intrusion. Well, intrusion to their home at least since Alister was still in her room. Her shock caused her to take her arm away from dress, causing the top part to fall into her lap. She blushed as she realized what had happened, and the reason why it happened. She quickly grabbed and tied the strap behind her neck.

Tatiana looked at the grocery bag that was left on the table. 'Odd. When Alis comes home with some groceries, she usually puts them away.' "Alis? Are you alright?"

Alister quickly got up and opened the door to her room. "I'm alright!"

Tatiana was grateful to hear her voice. Still, she was starting to worry. "Alister, I was…" She stared and was completely stunned by Alister's appearance. Alister's hair appeared unkept, tangled and messy, and her dress was wrinkled. "Alister! What happened to you?"

Alister blushed as she tried to think up an excuse for her appearance. "Um…well…" She brought her hands together. "I was…"

Tatiana grabbed Alister's arms. "Please don't tell me someone came here and…raped you Alis! If so, I'll kill HIM!"

"NO!" Alister yelled. "That's not it at all! Since it was me that…but…it didn't… I mean, I was just…just…taking a nap! That's all!" Alister meekly responded.

Tatiana frowned. "Alister…" Suddenly, something clicked in her head. "Alis…you didn't…" A grin appeared on her face. "Alis, you didn't happen to have brought home a boy now did you?"

Alister blushed as she stuttered her answer. "N..N…NO! It was just me! In my room…" Alister watched as Tatiana's face changed to that of amusement. "NAPPING! I WAS NAPPING!"

Unfortunately, Alister's stuttering and weak answer did not convince Tatiana otherwise. "Are you telling me the shy, mostly quiet, and reserved Alister 'relieved' some stress in her room while I'm away?" Tatiana's grin widened considerably as she got the expected result from Alister, with a complete shock and a deep blush appearing on her face. "So whom were you thinking about? Was it the market owner's son, Drake Warrenton? Or was it one of our students? Brian Sails? Or Allen Bishop?"

"NO!" Alister looked away from Tatiana as her flustered face turned a deeper shade of red. "It was Cl... I mean, NO! It wasn't…umm…it was just me! Wait! No! I was just…I…" Alister made sure that she didn't say anything that would incriminate her, although she admitted that she was doing a very poor job of it. She was also thankful that she didn't spill out her little secret, and hoped Tatiana didn't catch it. And Tatiana's teasing wasn't making it easy for her to come up with a better answer or get off of the subject. She needed to get away from this conversation immediately. "Stop teasing me!"

Tatiana crossed her arms. "Fine! But you don't need to worry Alister! Since it's only natural to be attracted to someone!"

Alister continued to look away from Tatiana. 'Even if it's Claus, Tatiana?' Alister thought sadly. 'Especially since you want him…'

As the silence between the two grew, Tatiana sighed, as she knew that she wasn't going to get anything else from her. "Well, I guess I should start dinner…"

"Tatiana…" Alister spoke up, stopping Tatiana from entering the kitchen.

"Yes Alister?" Tatiana turned to her friend.

Although she didn't want to, probe deeper into this subject, her curiosity was getting the better of her. This was especially true if things began to deteriorate between the two if something came between them, like a certain boy. "We've been living together since we decided to leave the others." Alister said as she looked away from Tatiana's face, avoiding eye contact. "What if…I or you…were to…find someone…"

Tatiana smiled slightly. "Well, we don't plan to live together forever right Alis?" Tatiana watched Alis nod before she continued. "Although I can guess you want a place of your own then…"

"I'm not implying that…" Alister started but was cut off by Tatiana.

"I know. I was just saying. I don't see why we won't be friends when that happened. After all, we've been friends since our days in the academy! What could possibly come between us?" 'Unless you're trying to take MY certain someone.' Tatiana thought, and in a less certain feeling, she connected that 'certain someone' with 'Claus'. As she looked up at Alister, she didn't see anything threatening about her. 'Knowing Alister, I know she wouldn't do that to me!'

Alister looked down, avoiding Tatiana's 'threatening' gaze.

Tatiana crossed her arms, with one of her hands touching her chin. "We could always find a place for you…or me if the time comes. Tatiana looked out the window and into the streets of the small town. "Housing in this town isn't that expensive. And if you or I want, we could always build a new one with our special someone!" 'Then me and Claus could…' Tatiana brushed that random thought out since she still needed to know what Claus thought about her. Although she could always hope! Suddenly, a devious grin appeared on Tatiana's face. "But in the meantime Alis, if you decide to invite someone while I'm away…I wouldn't mind!" Tatiana winked at Alister. "And if I am here…" Her grin widened. "Just make sure you keep it down!" She said in a semi-serious tone.

Alister face was now completely red as she caught what Tatiana meant. "Tatiana! Stop it!" 'You wouldn't be saying this if you knew who I was thinking about.'

Claus, Lavie, and Al's Home

Claus slowly walked up the road towards his home. He sees Al playing in the field in the front yard, indicating that they were both home. 'Great.' Claus took a deep breath, as he knew what this meant.

"Claus!" Al waved back at him before running into the house to get Lavie. "Lavie! Claus is home!"

Lavie was cutting up meat when she heard Al call Claus's name. "Claus?" She immediately stopped her cutting and ran to the doorway. "CLAUS!"

Claus meekly waved his hand in the air. "Hi Lavie!"

Lavie smile faded slightly. "Claus? Are you okay?"

"Yeah!" Claus sighed. "I'm just, a little tired! That's all!" Claus walked up to Lavie. "So, um, how was your trip to Mullen's?"

Lavie smiled again. "It went well! Al and Lacus made up! Isn't that right Al?"

Alvis pouted, but she relented when Lavie glared at her. "Yes. We made up." Alvis said, though not entirely convincingly.

Claus chuckled for a bit. "Don't worry! I'm sure in the end, you two will be great friends!"

"Hmph!" Alvis definitely sounded.

"Well, I guess I should take a bath and change…" Claus noted as he looked at himself. He gently pushed Lavie out of the way as he headed towards the bathroom.

"Claus…" Lavie said, stopping Claus in his tracks. "About this morning…"

Claus's arm started shaking a bit. "I…um…"

Lavie saddened at Claus's hesitation. "You still don't know…"

"I'm sorry. I now that you don't like me like this, unsure of myself and all…but, I just, don't know right now Lavie." Claus said without turning back to her. He contemplated whether or not he should tell her about Tatiana. But he decided against it for now. He was certain that he should NEVER talk about what happened between him and Alister. Although if something happened between them, he knew he shouldn't keep it secret or else, something bad might happen. When he finally turned and look at her, he could see tears starting to from in Lavie's eyes. Guilt welled up inside of him as he saw this. 'I don't want her like this!' "Hey! Maybe I…we should take this, one-day at a time? Um…" Claus looked away in order not to see Lavie's expression.

Lavie began to smile again. "Sure Claus! And maybe we can move into the same room…"

"Uh!" Claus backed up a bit. "Lavie, um, I think that…um…"

Lavie giggled. "I was only kidding Claus!" She approached him. "But when you finally decide…" She kissed him on the cheek, leaving Claus red faced. Lavie's eyes suddenly lit up. "Well, I should finish dinner now! Oh, and you REALLY do need that bath!" She pinched her nose to prove a point.

"Okay, okay!" Claus backed up and headed towards the bathroom. 'Why does my life have to be so contemplated?'

Claus, Lavie, and Al's Home - Bathroom

'You're a very kind person Claus.' Alister's voice resonated inside his head. 'It's why Lavie and Tatiana care for you so much.'

'I can't help it.' Claus took off his shirt. 'It's just who I am!'

"Claus?" A soft voice sounded behind him.

"Eh!" Claus was shocked stiff for a moment. He later relaxed as he turned around to see Alvis standing at the doorway. "Oh hey Al! Um…you know I'm about to…"

"Claus…" Al looked at him with a worried expression. "Do you love Lavie?"

"Eh?" Claus was stunned again by Alvis question. "Um, why do you ask Al?"

"Because, you and Lavie are not together!" Alvis said in a worried voice.

Claus gulped. "What do you mean Al? We're still together!" Claus gave a big smile. 'Maybe not together, together but…'

Alvis shook her head. "Then why are you in different rooms then Mullen and Donya?"

"Eh?" Claus blushed and looked away from Alvis. "Al, um…it's complicated…"

"Why is it complicated?" Alvis walked up to him and tugged at his pants. "You and Lavie have been living together for a long time!" Al looked up at Claus's face. Which, given that she grew a few inches since their time in the other world, was a lot closer to his level as well. "And Lavie cares a lot about you! Don't you care about Lavie?"

"Yes Al! It's just that…" Claus sighed. 'How am I going to say this? I love Lavie but…' Suddenly an image of Alister popped into his mind causing his heart to beat a bit faster. 'NO! Now's not the time!' He looked down at Alvis. "Al! I know. And I do care about Lavie! Just that…just that…I'm not sure we're ready for that kind of relationship yet!" Claus wasn't sure if that was the right thing to say to Alvis, but if it got her to stop this difficult conversation, he was willing to take it.

Alvis was still worried about her defacto parents. Parents that she loved with all her heart. She was especially concerned about Claus who, for the last few days, had seemed to be drifting away, especially from Lavie. But she nodded anyways. "Okay! But you better be ready soon!" Alvis left the bathroom as she went off to help Lavie out.

Claus was now consumed by guilt. 'Oh Alvis, I know you care about us. But what if…what if…' Another image of Alister appeared in his mind, and, as much as he tried to control it, he could feel his arousal rising. He quickly closed the door so that he wouldn't be interrupted again, and turned on the warm water. As the tub filled with water, he quickly entered it and hoped that the warm water would wash away the emotional turmoil of the day. Unfortunately, the only thing it did was making his mind go back to Alister and how she felt so right in his hands. How her soft skin just felt so good to him. "Alister…" He said under his breath. "Why? Why do I feel this way to you?"

Claus, Lavie, and Al's Home – Kitchen

Lavie took out a loaf of bread, sliced it into pieces, and placed the pieces in a bowl. "The soup is almost done Al! Get the table ready!"

"Okay!" Alvis got three plates out and placed them on the table. "Lavie?"

Lavie turned back to Alvis as she checked the chicken in the oven to see how it was doing. "Yes Al?"

"I want you and Claus to be together!" Alvis stated as if it was the most natural thing in the world.

Lavie smiled at the young girl. "So do I Al." She sighed. 'I just, I just can't imagine a life without him…'


Dinner went by with a breeze. Claus tried to act like it was any other day. He struck up a conversation, careful not to bring up his feelings and instead, focus on local town stories. They even talked about what Mullen and Donya. As well as what Lavie and Al did there. He even slightly touched on Tatiana and Alister and their school. Though Claus stopped that conversation pretty fast when he saw Lavie wince at the mention of Tatiana. After dinner was finished, he taught Alvis how to control a vanship, and later, Lavie taught her how to navigate. 'She was going to make a fine pilot or navigator to someone.' Claus thought. 'Which one, well, that's all up to her!'

Claus, Lavie, and Al's Home – Claus's Room

After that, Claus, Lavie, and Alvis all retired into their rooms for the night. To Claus, all of today's trouble came back to him.

Claus tossed and turned in his bed most of the night. He hated not knowing what to do. 'Funny,' Claus sadly thought, 'Right now, I'm probably more scared then I have ever been on the Silvana. And on the Silvana, my life was at stake when I took a vanship into battle.' As he tried to think about what he truly felt for the women in his life, his thoughts kept going back to Alister. "Alis." He spoke her name. He clinched his fist, taking a bit of his blanket with him. 'Do I love her? Is what we did today love? Or was it something else? Something that was more…primal?'

He was afraid of what the next day might bring.


Alister and Tatiana's Home

Dinner for Tatiana and Alister went a little different for the two. Normally, their dinner conversation consisted of what their students were like, and what their next day schedule will be. Another topic they might be discussing was their new teachers that they hired. Recently, three of their former students, Randy Skies, Michael Kinney, and Casey Adams, all wanted to teach at their school, and, with a little reluctance, they both accepted them all. It was the first time they had allowed anyone else to teach in their school that they both had set up by themselves. But after a few weeks, both had discovered that, with the extra help, they could both, accept more students, AND have more off time. This off-time being used to visit all of their old friends, from Godwin, the mechanics, and the rest of their old crew that were still on the Silvana, Empress Sophia, Mullen and Donya, and of course, Claus, Lavie, and Alvis. It was also used to just to fly around. Tatiana had to admit; they were starting to forget the reason why they set up the school in the first place, to spread the simple joy of flying through the blue sky that they hadn't done in a long while.

But now, well, with today's discovery, Tatiana kept teasing Alister throughout dinner. After all, she couldn't believe that her best friend could be so 'dirty'. This caused Alister to be extremely uncomfortable. Of course, if Tatiana knew what effect it was having on Alister, she might've stopped her teasing at this instant. Because of her teasing, Alister couldn't stop thinking about Claus. Alister was hoping that Tatiana wouldn't keep probing her about 'whom she was thinking about' or 'whom she wanted to screw more'! Though she would bring up names like the three teachers, the market boy, and a number of 'eligible students', the only boy that stayed in Alister's mind was Claus. She also hoped that she would stop giving small suggestive words causing Alister to blush. Now, no matter what she did, she couldn't stop thinking about him, doing certain activities, what was under his clothes and what a certain part of him was like. Of course, to Tatiana, Alister was simply being her reserved quiet self. She could never imagine the potential disaster this night could bring to all of them.

As dinner ended, Tatiana decided to let Alister off the hook for the rest of the night, as she worked on the next day's schedule. Included on that schedule was a lunch with Claus. She was hoping that this would be the start of something more. MUCH more.

For Alister, normally she would help come up with the next day's schedule with Tatiana. However, she told Tatiana that she was tired and decided to retire early given that she had a lot on her mind. When she saw Tatiana grinning at her, she quickly turned away and headed straight towards her room before Tatiana had the chance to change her mind and start teasing her again.

Alister entered her room, changed into her pajamas, and plopped herself onto her bed. Though she intended to get some sleep in, her inner turmoil prevented that from happening. She continued to toss and turn as she struggled to understand these new feelings. She hugged her pillow close to her as a strong desire for a certain light auburn haired boy filled her mind. A single tear of frustration falls from her eyes. "I have to stop thinking about him! But I can't! Claus…" She quietly spoke as sweat was pouring down her face. "Why? Why can't I get you out of my mind? I want, no…I NEED you Claus!"

-The Next Morning…

Claus, Lavie, and Al's Home

Claus quickly finished up his breakfast. He was wearing a brown buttoned up shirt and brown pants. Claus put up a face that he was alert and ready, even though he had a very difficult time getting to sleep. Though he managing to wake up before Alvis got him, it was probably due to his inability to sleep. After an uneventful breakfast, he was readying himself to leave. The reason for being in such a rush, which he hated to admit, was so that he could get out of the house and work in solitude for a while.

'And maybe see her again and…'

Claus tried to get that thought out of his mind. 'No! Even if I see her again…we shouldn't…shouldn't…I need to get out of here!' "Another great breakfast Lavie! Well, I got to go!" Claus quickly got out of the chair and headed towards the door.

"CLAUS!" Lavie yelled at him with venom dripping out of her voice. She wore pretty much the same outfit she wore the previous day. Well, the same style at least.

"Eh!" Claus stopped dead in his tracks. He slowly turned around to see a pissed off Lavie glaring back at him with deadly eyes. "Y..yes Lavie?"

Lavie continued to glare at him with her hands firm on her hips. Then, like someone turning on a switch, Lavie's face instantly softened. "Sleepyhead, you forgot your lunch!" Lavie took a wrapped box and a water pouch and handed it to Claus.

"Oh right!" Claus responded a little embarrassed.

"Don't forget Claus." Lavie leaned in close to him. "I put all my love into them."

Claus eyes widened. "I…I won't forget."

After taking a few steps back, Lavie waved at him. "Have fun at work! And please, try to come home early today!"

"I will!" Claus held the box and water pouch and started running off to work. Well, he had to stop at the porch when he tripped and dropped the lunch box.

Lavie's eyes widened and an instant frown of disapproval appeared. "CLAUS YOU KNUCKLEHEAD!"

"I'm sorry!" Claus quickly picked up the lunch box. "I'll be on my way!"

Lavie gritted her teeth until Claus was well out of eye range. She then took a deep sigh. "Claus, what am I going to do with you?" She said under her breath. 'Far away with…' Suddenly, an image of Tatiana appeared, wearing Claus's pants. 'HER! Claus! Please don't tell me that she was the one you run to!'

"Lavie?" Alvis asked from the dining table, interrupting Lavie's thoughts.

Lavie turned to her. "What is it Al?"

"When do you think Claus would be ready?" Al innocently asked.

Lavie raised an eyebrow. "Ready? Ready for what?"

"To be with you." Alvis said without any hesitation.

"Eh?" Lavie blushed at Al's unusual statement. "Well uh…what do you mean by that Al?"

"When you and Claus sleep in the same room." Alvis replied. "Like Mullen and Donya."

"Oh!" Lavie smiled at Alvis as she realized that she misinterpreted what Alvis said. At least she thinks she misinterpreted it. "I don't know Al! I hope it is soon!"

"That's what I told Claus." Alvis looked down a little worried.

Lavie patted Alvis on the head. "We just have to wait for him!"

Alvis nodded. She looked back up to Lavie and smiled. "And then you can start making babies like Mullen and Donya!"

"EH?" Lavie's eyes nearly bulged out of their sockets when she heard that.

Claus's Vanship Maintenance Shop

"I really should think about hiring someone." Claus started to doze off as he began to repair another vanship. His head hits a pipe on the ship, instantly waking him up. "Ow!" Claus rubbed his head as he looked at the clock. "Almost lunchtime. Maybe I should see Tatiana…" He turned his head towards the door. 'But what happens if I see her again? If? What happens WHEN I see her again?'

Claus dropped his wrench on the ground. He also dropped his head as he thought about what he was going to do next. He turned to his lunch box and thought about Lavie and Tatiana. 'But if I don't go, how would I know what my true feelings are?' And while he tried not to think about her, Claus couldn't stop it. 'And Alister…Alis…' He gulped. "Well, no reason to delay this any further!" His stomach growled as if to emphasize the point. "Okay okay, I'm going!"

Vanship Flying School

Tatiana peered into the cockpit of the training vanship. She was wearing a black sweater with her fighter wings symbol near her neckline. It was a carryover from her days as a fighter pilot aboard the Silvana. She was also wearing brown pants and black boots. Inside was a young boy, around twelve maybe, at the cockpit of the vanship. Tatiana was giving an assessment on his technique and skill before he can actually take one into the sky. Actually, he was too young to be flying. Still, no reason why he shouldn't at least get a feel of what the real thing is right? Especially if this only makes his passion to fly the real thing grow. "Nice technique Daniel. Try not to grip it so hard. In ideal conditions, you shouldn't have a lot of problem steering."

"Okay Professor!" Daniel smiled at Tatiana. "I can't wait to take one into the sky!"

Tatiana patted the young child. "Continue practicing and I'm sure you will!"

Alister wrote up a few more assessments. She was wearing a more modest black naval shirt and long black pants. She was also wearing black shoes along with it. She passed by a few kids who were chasing each other around a vanship. 'Seems like this new bunch isn't practicing. All their scores have gone down.' Absentmindedly, Alister bumped into Randy Skies. "Oh! I'm sorry Mr. Skies! I didn't see you there."

Randy Skies, the blond haired teacher grinned. "It's okay! You can make it up to me over lunch. Oh, and you can call me Randy!" He winked at her.

Alister was stunned silent for a moment. She shyly held her hands together at her midsection. "Um, eh…" She looked away from the grinning Randy and saw someone she had both hoped, and dreaded to see walk into the school. "Claus!" She waved back at him from where she stood.

Claus, who was carrying a bag that contained his lunch, felt like an arrow shot threw his heart when he heard Alister's voice. He slowly turned to see her smiling face, as well as her hand waving back at him with some guy frowning next to her. He seemed to remember him as one of the new teachers at this school. Still, he was the least of his concerns as he contemplated whether or not he should respond to her. 'Of course I should respond! It's only Alis…the girl, no, woman I can't get out of my mind. Why shouldn't I?' He slowly raised his arm ready to wave back at her. Though someone else blocked his path at that moment.

When Tatiana heard Claus's name, she instantly turned to the entrance. When she saw him there, she instantly went up and stepped in front of him. "Claus! You're here!"

Claus was stunned to see Tatiana's face in front of him. He peered past her shoulder to see Alister's smile fade, and her face look away from his. A ping of disappointment washed over him, though he tried not to show it with Tatiana standing in front of him. As he turned to the serious looking woman in front of him, he gave a faint smile. "So, am I too early?"

Tatiana lightly shook her head. "No. You're just in time." She turned to the room full of students. "Everyone take a break for lunch!" She yelled to the group. "Now, shall we?" Tatiana led Claus to her office.

"Sure!" Claus said unsure of himself. As he was led to Tatiana's office, he took one look at Alister.

Alister eyed Claus for a brief moment, before turning away. 'Claus…'

Randy smirked when Tatiana took Claus to her office. He returned his attention to Alister. "So, Alister…can I call you Alister?" Receiving no answer, he assumed the answer was a yes. "So, how about that lunch?"

Alister eyed Randy before she turned away again. "Not today Mr. Skies." She left through her personal office door.

"But…" Randy raised his arm towards Alister when she disappears through the doors. After a short moment, he grunted. "Same old story…"

Tatiana's Office

"Um, we're not eating with the others?" Claus asked as he noted his location. Tatiana was sitting at her desk, with him was sitting across from her. The desk was amazingly clean given the mess that was all around them. Stakes of papers cluttering nearby sideboards, cabinets overflowing with papers, and the walls were covered in pictures. It was like she cleaned up her table just for this occasion, which was probably true.

Tatiana glared at him. "Is that a problem Claus?"

"Huh?" Claus turned to Tatiana and sees her seemingly cold eyes. "Uh, no. Just…um…"

Tatiana's face softened and then gave a smile to Claus. "I didn't want anyone to bother us."

Claus still felt uncomfortable, especially since he knew there was a certain someone being relatively close by here, although Tatiana's seemingly change in behavior did calm him down a bit. "Yeah. I see."

Tatiana took out a bag. "So, have you had contact with Godwin and the others? Did you even tell them your line or work? I'm sure they would get a kick out of it!"

"Not yet." Claus looked out the window and wondered what they were doing right now. "They probably will all have a big laugh when they find out! Given how well I'm with the wrench, they probably going to think I lost my mind or something!"

Tatiana giggled. "Well, I don't think you're that bad! If you were, you never would get any customers! Even though you're the only mechanic here!" Tatiana took out a sandwich and took a bite from it.

Claus smiled. "I guess that's true!" Suddenly, he realized something. "You're…a lot different Tatiana."

"Huh?" Tatiana looked up, a tinge of red appeared on her cheeks. "What…what do you mean?"

"Well, when we're on the Silvana, you're always so strict and serious. Now, you're just…different." Claus looked down at his hands.

Tatiana's smile faded, and her face-hardened. "Are you saying that you like me like this?" Tatiana voiced in a harsh tone.

"Eh!" Claus looked up and leaned back a bit. "No! No! I'm not saying that at all! I…um, actually, I like you like…" Claus blushed after he realized what he said.

Tatiana's heart fluttered after hearing that. Her face instantly softens and a faint smile returned. She leaned in a bit, resting her chin on her hand. "Life is a lot different here then when I was on the Silvana. Graduating a military academy, and then being assigned to the Silvana, I saw the skies as conflict and a battlefield then. Here, with war being a distant memory, I can finally experience what it truly meant to be in the skies." Tatiana closed her eyes as she thought about the wind sailing through her hair with the fear of being shot down by anyone.

Claus smiled. "Yeah! This is the world we all had hoped for!" After saying this, his stomach complained again. "Oh! I forgot! Hehehe…"

Tatiana giggled. "Glad some things never change!"

Claus bent down and picked up the water pouch and lunch box out of his bag. He opened it, revealing a fairly big bagel sandwich with ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and a slice of onion. 'She expects me to eat all this?' Claus thought. He looked up to Tatiana. "Hey! Want to try some? Lavie made it so it's probably pretty good and…uh…" Claus's eyes widened as he saw Tatiana's expression.

Tatiana narrowed her eyes in disgust when she heard Lavie's name being mentioned.

"Eh…" Claus took a bite out of the sandwich Lavie made. He turned away from Tatiana in order to avoid eye contact.

"I can make a sandwich." Tatiana said under her breath.

"What?" Claus looked up to Tatiana.

"Nothing." Tatiana said as she ate her lunch in silence.

The both of them ate in an uncomfortable silence. Every so often, they would eye each other before quickly looking away.

When the clock struck the next hour, Claus placed his unfinished sandwich in the box, his half full water pouch, and placed them in his bag. "I…I guess I should go back to work!" He stood up and prepared to leave. "I'll see ya later Tatiana!" He turned around and headed towards the exit. His eyes completely widened when Tatiana did something that he never thought she would do.

Tatiana hugged him from the back. "I hope to see you again Claus!" She then leaned in closer to his ear. "And this time, I'll make lunch for you."

Claus felt his face reddened a bit due to Tatiana's closeness. "O..okay!" Claus meekly replied. Claus waited for Tatiana to let go before he continued to leave her office. But before he left, he turned to one of the pictures in her office. The picture had Tatiana with the crew of the Silvana. Though his focus was not on Tatiana, but on her partner. 'Alis…'


Claus's Vanship Maintenance Shop

"That should do it!" Claus patted the vanship as it was taken away.

"That's great!" The man said as he started the vanship up. "Hey! Sounds as good as new!"

"Now we can finish that three star mission!" His navigator spoke up. He then turned to Claus. "We'll keep you in our thoughts Mr. Valca!"

Claus waved at them as they flew off. "Thanks!" As the vanship few into the air, Claus turned to the clock that was on the wall. "Four p.m." He stared down the street towards a certain house. He started to shake as uncertain feelings came back to him. "Should I? Is it right?" Claus sat down as he contemplated his situation. "But if I go, what will happen? Is it something I want to happen?" Claus took a deep shuddering breath as he tried to calm his nerves.

That's when he came to a decision.

Alister and Tatiana's House

Alister sat in a chair next to the front door. She was both full of anticipating and fear. She took out a pocket watch and noted the time. Four thirty-one. When she came home, she couldn't think of anything except this moment. She took a deep breath as the minutes passed by, with no sign of anyone coming.

Doubt began to enter Alister's mind as the minutes started to tick away. "Maybe he's not coming." Alister said to no one. "Maybe that's the way it should be. Maybe, these feelings weren't real. Maybe they weren't love but something else." She looked at a picture of herself and Tatiana. "Whoever he chooses, I'll be happy knowing that…that he's happy."

Suddenly, she heard a knock at the door.

Alister froze when the sound hit her ears. Her heart started to beat faster. Though she still held a lot of doubt. 'That's not Claus! Maybe it's Mr. Sk…Randy. Yeah. It's not…'

"Alis?" A voice that was certainly not Randy sounded behind the door.

Alister's heart started to beat faster. 'He's…he's here! What should I do? Should I ignore him?'

"Alis?" Claus repeated.

'Maybe I should let him think I'm not home!' Alister's breath was becoming shallower. 'If I don't let him in, then there won't be any more trouble! There won't be any misunderstanding! We wouldn't be making the biggest mistake of our lives!'

After a moment of quietness, Claus spoke up again. "I…guess you're not home! Well, I'll be going home…"

Alister quickly ran up and swung the door open.

"Al…" Claus, who was slightly turned away from the door, found himself dragged into the house.

Alister slammed the door shut behind him. She went up to the door and carefully locked it.

Claus looked at himself first, and then to Alister who was still standing at the doorway. He noted that she didn't change out of her clothes since he saw her at the school. He gulped. "Alis?"

"This…is a mistake." Alister said under her breath without turning to look at Claus.

Claus lightly nodded. "I guess you're ri…"

At that moment, Alister spun around and nearly lunged at Claus. She took his face in her hands and planted a deep hungry kiss on his lips.

-------End of Chapter 2

Man, did this chapter take a BUTT load of time to write! And the reason for taking this long? Like I said, I normally don't write this 'high angst ridden' stuff! I personally prefer more action drama, and maybe a little comedy compared to this kind of story. So, this is sort of new for me. Also new would be me making a lemon. This is why you will also find this story at AdultFanfiction dot com. Now, before you get too 'excited' (cough, bad pun, cough), while the story is there, it isn't a lemon yet since said scene will be in the next chapter.

And again, if the idea of a lemon scares you, keep reading it here! FFN will get the censored M version that, at most, might be lime flavored.

Also, I'm aware that Tatiana is probably OOC in this story. Though I feel that given the changes she was experiencing towards the end of the series, and her different lifestyle, I thought that this Tatiana isn't all that far off to what she would've turned out.

After this is put up, this completes my recent updates for my two LEAST read stories. Though for the few who read this story and the other one, thank you!

-Next Chapter…Now that Claus and Alister had an afternoon to remember, what's next for the couple? Do they still have doubts about their feelings? Do they still keep it a secret from the others? And what about Tatiana and Lavie? Until then…later!