Two of Us
by Clara

They were standing near each other, but not close enough for anyone to guess that they were together and not apart. It was drizzling, but that seemed to be enough to annoy the larger of the two (because although they stood in identical positions with their feet spread apart at shoulder width and their hands in their pockets and stoic expressions, the blonde had a slight twitch in his eye).

"Couldn't the taxi get here faster?" asked Seifer, squinting down the street. It was bad enough that he had to wait, but in the rain? He always hated the rain. Too cold for his tastes.

Squall shrugged.

"I know what you mean."

Squall looked at Seifer, eyebrows raised.

"What, you think after years of being your rival I wouldn't pick up on your language? I know what you're thinking."

Squall coughed, and Seifer mock-gasped, bringing his hand to his chest.

"Really, Squall, I thought better of you."

The brunette looked like he wanted to smile, but didn't want to give Seifer the satisfaction. Seifer did it for him, keeping his eyes forward. They didn't want to look at each other—it might give the impression that they were together, and they certainly weren't.

"I guess you really can read my mind," said Squall quietly, in the smooth, rich voice Seifer thrived on (but he would never tell anybody this). Seifer's smile widened into something of a grin.

"Not so much your mind," said he. "Just your expression."

"I wasn't aware I had one."

Seifer chuckled, but he periodically looked worriedly up at the sky. The clouds were getting thicker, and the rain was starting to fall at a steadier pace.

"You do," said he, turning around and starting to head in the direction of their home. It would be faster if they walked. He desperately wished he had an umbrella. Squall watched him for a moment, immobile, before sighing and following after.

(He kept a couple feet between them; it wouldn't do good to look like they were together.)

"Tell me about these expressions," said Squall, quickening the pace. The rain was coming down harder, now, threatening to drown them, soon. The brunette couldn't help but to sneak a glance at the blonde, liking the way his pale hair stuck to his forehead and the back of his neck, liking how natural he looked but not daring to say anything (it may be interpreted as intimate).

"Sometimes you almost smile," said Seifer, swiping the back of his hand across his eyes. He had to raise his voice, because the sound of the rain falling on the cement was getting louder. "Sometimes you pucker your eyebrows. Most the time you frown, but sometimes I can tell by the way you look at me just what you're thinking. You wear a lot of masks."

He stopped there—he had to because thunder crashed and startled them both, but neither would admit to something like that because it was embarrassing. They were running now, because the rain was coming down so hard that it was hard to see two feet in front of them and the thunder was crashing and lightning booming.

It was hard to say who started it (but Squall would maintain that it was Seifer, and Seifer would scoff and say he hated the rain), but one of them splashed the other with a puddle and since the other was also a soldier he had to retaliate. Running to their dry home became running after each other, splashing and laughing and wondering why they were doing both; the rain was coming down heavily and they were acting so immature for a couple of grown men who had fought over the world, but it didn't seem to matter. The raincoats were so pointless now—they did nothing to protect them from the sharp droplets of water that came from both the sky and the ground.

One of them grabbed the other, perhaps hoping to tackle him, but the other just caught him and held tight.

"You and me," said Seifer breathlessly, and his voice was musical with laughter.

Seifer kissed Squall for a long time, until the sun came out again, and then they pulled apart and stood at the street, standing next to each other but not close enough to look as if they were together.