Author's Notes: Please enjoy this little piece of Final Fantasy VIII fiction! Gee, this piece is so different from my other works, but it was insane fun to write..…. basically this little story just examines the simple idea: what if Zell.. really wasn't all that innocent?

Disclaimer: They aren't mine. Some of the porn titles mentioned in this fic were made up by me, some, however, are the names of actual porno videos! Educational, isn't this story just?

Timeline: During the Balamb Town Mission. Y'know, before you fight Fu-jin and Rai-jin and Squall and Rinoa have to stay at Zell's house? Yeah, then. I always thought I had to write a fic or two about that night. My muse kind of likes it. Sheela does, as well.

Warnings: Funny porn titles. Excessive vocabulary. Lots of evaaaal things. (laughs like Bowser)

Feedback: I'd LOVE a review! Puh-lease?

Length: One-shot. Completed! Yay.

Exquisite Taste

by Nea Vanille

"You know, Zell, I never thought of you as the alcoholic type," Rinoa said sheepishly, immediately spotting a scarlet bottle stuffed suspiciously underneath the martial artist's bed. They'd just entered Zell's sacred chamber, commonly referred to quite blandly as 'Zell's room' by commoners such as her and Squall, and it was one of the first things that immediately aroused her eyes' attention, causing her to raise an eyebrow in faint amusement.

Zell apparently didn't think it was all that amusing, since when he swirled around, he had a look of complete and surprise on his boyish, youthful features. Zell's hectic eyes darted from Rinoa to Squall and back to Rinoa and he uttered the ever-intelligent "Wha?"

They had managed to sneak into Balamb Town and were in the middle of a tricky mission, trying to track down valuable information and Zell he had only grudgingly invited them into their house. The fact that Rinoa and Squall had done little other than fighting ever since they'd met had probably influenced the blonde's apparent dislike to share his room.

Rinoa guessed they could be somewhat grateful, seeing as how he at least hadn't just dumped them downstairs, expecting them to squeeze into one bed with his rather voluminous mother or, even worse, had just plain left them at the doorstep.

Zell's room was very clean, almost sterile, something that surprised Rinoa a great deal since she had always expected the blonde guy to be somewhat… chaotic. The almost eerie orderliness the room was composed with proved her quite utterly wrong and she silently chided myself for having given in to the temptation that was stereotyping.

"Hey it's all right," she smiled at him, since he still looked quite surprised at Rinoa having discovered the bottle. "But, does your mother suffer from selective blindness or something?" she went on with a wink. "That bottle draws your eyes to it like they would be to someone getting naked in front of you."

Zell looked embarrassed and turned away. Smiling, Rinoa looked over at Squall, wanting to include him in the conversation, but her smile soon faltered as she took in their leader's sullen, statuesque state. Squall had followed them into Zell's room without any comment whatsoever, was only indifferently scanning Zell's room, looking at it with a detached look that suggested he would much rather be reading through last year's weather reports than use the chance to learn more about his friend. Rinoa was instantly annoyed at the brunette's behaviour, something she had been a lot lately.

Pursing her lips, deciding there was no use in being angry at Squall for being a dick when 'dick' was about the essence of Squallosity, she turned back to Zell, noticing that he was still uneasy about her having spotted the bottle, something that just raised her interest even more. Coming up with a plan, the raven-haired girl smiled at Zell innocently.

"I see you have a punching bag," she said languidly. "Do you use it often?"

It was a topic that she knew would interest Zell and indeed, he swallowed it eagerly, his eyes lighting up at the prospect of being able to tell them about his training routines. "Yeah, I do," he explained, a proud smile on his face, but before he had to chance to delve into his exact training and diet routines, Rinoa had gone for a run to his bed, a huge grin across her pretty face, and Zell barely had time to register what was happening. He helplessly had to watch as Rinoa triumphantly pulled a bottle of Smirnoff from out of under his bed, doing a silly victory pose as she held it in the air. Zell's heart skipped a heart as her smile slowly started to waver when another item that had been hidden underneath the bottle fell into her lap. Confused, she looked down at it, noticing that it was a magazine of some sort, and just when she heard Zell's agonized moan, she realised with a pang that there were numerous pictures of women rubbing their nude breasts against each other plastered all across the front page.

Staring at the magazine out of wide eyes, Rinoa felt the beginnings of what would be a massive giggle attack inside her, but before she could open her mouth to unleash the laughter, Zell snatched the magazine away almost angrily, his face now as red as a tomato, and that's when Rinoa lost it. Putting her hands on her belly, she threw her head back and laughed, and Zell, so red even his ears had started to have that rosy taint to them, bit down on his lips in embarrassment.

"Stop laughing, Rinoa!" Zell screamed, his eyes so huge with embarrassment that they only caused Rinoa to laugh harder.

"Ex… exqui… exquisite taste!" Rinoa managed to squeeze out between laughter, something that caused Zell to bury his face in his hands, not wanting to look at the laughing black-haired girl anymore. The blonde was so overwhelmed by nervous embarrassment that he just threw the smut magazine away, not wanting to hold it anymore, like getting rid of the evidence meant that Rinoa would instantly forget everything about said ominous magazine, but all his thoughts were quickly diminished as he heard an angry, growling sound from behind him and Zell turned around, ready to face a T-Rexaur, which only turned out to be Squall who had just gotten D-cup tits flung into his face.

"What the fuck, Zell!" Squall exclaimed, "I don't want this!"

He threw the magazine back into the direction of Rinoa, who yelped in a high-pitched voice and made an awkward jump forward in an attempt to dodge the flying magazine. Zell, who had quickly noticed what this would all end up in, started to scream just as Rinoa banged head-first into his closed closet doors, falling onto the floor with a soft umph. Slowly, the closet door which Rinoa had fallen against opened and Rinoa screamed as she was suddenly showered by glossy magazines that were pouring out of the now open closet like a waterfall.

Zell wanted to die.

Rinoa sat up, rubbing her head in discomfort, which soon vanished from her face to make space for a radiant grin as she took in the magazines. Her grin grew even wider and soon took possession of her whole face as she discovered several DVD cases underneath the magazines. Before either Zell or Squall could stop her, Rinoa eagerly grabbed one DVD box and studied the title.

"Big Boobs Unlimited! " Rinoa asked rhetorically. "Tsk, Zell. Aren't mine just as nice?"

"Big… what?" Squall gasped from somewhere behind. "What the f –"

"Rinoa!" Zell exclaimed, interrupting Squall's equally agonized voice. "Don't –"

"…Muffy the Vampire Layer?"

"Pu.. what –" Squall exclaimed once more, his pale skin having flushed a slight rosy-red. "Rinoa! This is hardly appropriate –"

"Give those back!" Zell interrupted Squall yet again, quickly approaching Rinoa, who was giggling uncontrollably, yanking 'Muffy The Vampire Layer' out of her hands. His whole head reminded Rinoa of a tomato, which only caused her to giggle even harder.

"Was this why…" she had to pause, trying to get a grip onto her fit of laughter. "Hyne, is this why you didn't want to share your room? Naughty Zelly."

"Rinoa!" Zell and Squall shrieked in unison (Zell's voice resembling a scared chicken while Squall's sounded like a PMSing Headmaster Cid) and Zell started to stuff all of his smut magazines back into the closet while Squall awkwardly approached the couple on the floor.

Squall couldn't resist wrinkling his nose as his eyes took in the cover of an especially delicate title.

"Stop… my.. Ass… is on Fire..?" Squall stuttered.

"It.. it.. it was cheap! Okay?" Zell defended himself. "I.. didn't even watch it!"

"That's a good one!" Rinoa said cheerfully. "But I think I still prefer Sex Trek: The Next Penetration. Great taste, Zell. At least the girls on that cover have petite boobs like me."

"Guys! Guys! What are you doing?" Zell screamed. "This is…. private!"

"Oh come on, Zell!" Rinoa, who was finally starting to collect herself (trying to, anyway), pressed out between yet another small fit of giggles. "It's okay. It's normal. Guys your age like that."

"Really?" Zell asked, raising his eyebrows cutely. He temporarily stopped stuffing his magazines and DVDs back into his closet (which was so full that titles kept sliding to the floor even as he was bravely fighting against them) and turned his upper body to Rinoa. "All guys?"

"Sure!" Rinoa exclaimed, smiling broadly at Zell. "This is a normal thing to like. All teenagers do.. well, um," Rinoa trailed off. She frowned.

Simultaneously, both Rinoa and Zell turned their heads to look at Squall.

Squall blinked.

"Wh.. what?" he said dumbly.

"You can admit it, Squall. It's no big deal," Rinoa said, trying to sound maternal, but failing ruefully as she started to laugh yet again. "It's… it's a normal thing to like The Journey to Vaginaville… I mean… entertainment like this," she corrected herself as Zell gasped in agony and hissed a sharp: "don't mention the titles!"

Squall, meanwhile, frowned even deeper. "Don't be ridiculous. I don't –"

"You know, Rinoa, I'm sure he doesn't," Zell said.

"Don't interrupt me all the time," Squall snapped.

Zell made a face like a beaten dog. "Sorry, Boss."

"Squall, come on! Don't be so serious!" Rinoa said, grimacing in an attempt to mock Squall's ever-present frown at the mention of the word 'serious'. "This is a normal thing to like."

"Is it..?" Squall echoed hollowly, raising an interested eyebrow as an idea seemed to come to him. "For girls, too…?"

Zell blinked in surprise.

Rinoa's smile dropped for the first time and she shifted uncomfortably. "What..? Are you implying..! I don't –"

"Same reaction as Squall!" Zell whispered, so lost in his awe he totally forgot about his challenging task of stuffing the smut back into his closet. "… wow!"

"What! No, I…" Rinoa, shifting her eyes to Zell and Squall and back to Zell again, finally let out a defeated sigh. "…Sometimes…"

"Sometimes..?" Zell echoed.

"Sometimes I look at them too, okay?" Rinoa exclaimed, blushing furiously as she did so but quickly collecting herself again. With a winning smile, she added: "See? Normal. So, Squall…."

"Wait, wait, wait," Zell said, a confused look written on his face. "You mean you like to watch porn sometimes!"

Squall flinched at the word. "Stop it, Zell!"

"What! Valid question!" Zell said eagerly. "So, Rinoa, do you! You like… porn!"

"What's with the p-word!" Squall exclaimed, all colour draining from his face. He looked like he needed someone to steady him.

Rinoa, meanwhile, looked at Zell out of questioning eyes. "I already said so, didn't I!" she said huffily. "I'll say no more on that issue." She paused. "So, Squall..?"

"Huh.. me?" Squall muttered as though just realising what the whole discussion was about. His eyebrows were laced together in one of the most venomous frowns recorded in history. "… whatever."

"Whatever? But, this isn't a title for a video!" Zell frowned.

"No," Rinoa said, nodding busily. "Big Trouble in Little Vagina is, for example."

"I said, don't read the titles!" Zell screamed in plain agony, now remembering to continue stuffing the titles back into his closet, fighting against the never-ending array of DVDs and magazines.

"But they're funny," Rinoa protested. "Where do you find that stuff anyway?"

"What do you mean, where did I find that stuff?" Zell asked incredulously. "You don't have that kind of shops in Timber…? Wait a minute. Where did you get it from then?"

Rinoa flushed. "Well… I… sort of…"

"Made your own?" Squall offered.

"Eeeeh!" Zell exclaimed, while Rinoa almost fell over with shock.

"Don't be such an asshole, Squall! I did not!" she yelled. So much for ending things with Squall peacefully and without either of our heads shoved into the TV, she thought sourly. Then, she remembered that both men were still waiting for an answer. She sighed in semi-defeat. "I meant I sort of… got them… from my dad?"

"Got… them?" Zell repeated, as though having to come to terms with the meaning of the word. Again, he momentarily forgot about shoving the DVDs back into the closet, flexing his clear blue eyes upon the petite girl.

"Stole them, if you prefer," Rinoa said flatly. "There. Happy?"

Zell's face lit up. "Just keeping them in one's room is better than stealing them. Right? Damn. I'm good!"

"Still.." Rinoa said sulkily, her eyes trailing to the many DVDs still scattered around the floor. "At least I never watched -"

"No! Don't read the titles!" Zell exclaimed, his eyes widening. He actually jumped forward in what was most likely a helpless attempt to stop Rinoa from voicing another title. In doing so, he unintentionally caused the whole avalanche of smut to rain down on both his and Rinoa's bodies. Half-buried underneath the magazines, both of them wailed in surprise.

"Ewwww!" Rinoa hollered, crawling out from underneath the load of DVDs. "Damn, was that necessary, Zell!"

"I'm… I'm sorry…" Zell answered, looking like a beaten dog, actually sinking his head in defeat. "So sorry."

Rinoa sighed as though having a massive headache and that was precisely the moment in which the three of them heard the voice of the one person they wanted to see the least right that moment reach their ears: Zell's mum.

"Zell, my dear?" she called, the stair creaking as she heaved her massive weight up the stairs, followed by the swift noises of her footsteps outside the door. "Is everything okay up there? I heard some screaming and I was worried..."

All three jaws simultaneously dropped, sending each other panicked looks (well, mostly Zell and Rinoa – Squall stood there with an oddly delirious look on his face) and started to brush off every remaining bit of pornography off their limbs as they scurried to their feet.

Squall looked at them, calmly. Way too calm. Suspicion of what exactly Squall was planning started to creep up within Rinoa, but before she was able to inquire about it, Squall opened his mouth. "I think we have a situation in here, Miss Dincht!" he called, causing both Zell's and Rinoa's facial expression to be reduced to little other than plain shock.

"Let me see!" came the answer from Miss Dincht, and Zell and Rinoa took it as their sign to sprint to the door as fast as their legs could carry them, which actually resulted in Rinoa tripping over her own feet and crushing against Squall in mid-run. Squall gasped in surprise as Rinoa's head connected painfully with his lower abdomen and his eyes widened in shock as her weight pulled him down to the floor. They both connected heavily with the carpet and Rinoa's face was pressed against Squall's crotch right the same moment in which Miss Dincht opened the door and her face poked through, reducing the time to when she'd realise the full dilemma of the 'situation' to mere milliseconds. Heat exploded inside Rinoa's body and she hastily withdrew her face from Squall's nether regions, seeing how Ma Dincht's eyes started to widen until – her son blocked her view, a goofy grin plastered across his face.

"Mom!" he exclaimed cordially, putting one hand on her shoulder to usher her out at which his mother only gave him an incredulous look. "It's nice you came, but -"

"Zell," she said, frowning, "I just heard those noises, and.." her gaze slipped past her son and flexed upon Rinoa and Squall, who were still sitting on the floor, their limbs quite entangled. Her eyebrows laced together into a fine frown.

"Nothing happened!" Zell exclaimed, trying to keep his mother's attention away from Squall and Rinoa (for they were closer to the pile of smut magazines than he was). "Why don't you.. go downstairs and.. prepare dinner or something!"

"Wait a second, darling. What are Squall and Rinoa doing on the floor?" Zell's mother asked slowly, her eyes trailing from the two back to her son, her mouth set into a tight sort of smile.

"Eh?" Zell answered dumbly. "What they're doing on the floor? Oh, right. About that! Well, they…err…"

"Squall and I!" Rinoa exclaimed, "….are making out!"

Both Zell and Squall drew in one collective breath. "What!" Squall asked, looking at the raven-haired girl as though she'd gone bonkers. "We so aren't."

Rinoa giggled nervously. "No need to be shy, Squall!"

Ma Dincht was distracted enough that Zell was able to use the opportunity. He quickly stepped out of the room and closed the door behind him and his mother, giving her an apologetic smile. His mother continued to frown.

"You have.. some weird friends, sonny," she eventually said.

"Err.. they do have their moments," Zell replied weakly, forcing himself to not let his smile slip. If his mother ever found out about that little porn collection, he'd be so dead. "Well, um, we haven't really cooked together in a long time, um, have we? How about we leave the love-birds alone for a while?" He laughed nervously, grabbing his mother by the shoulder yet again to gently guide her down the stairs, but his mother, to Zell's utter, utter dismay, was reluctant to move.

Then, it all happened so quickly that Zell was yet again rendered unable to move before the disastrous deed had been completed. His mother quickly went to the door, opened it and peered into the floor, followed by the collective gasps of Rinoa and Zell.

"No.. Ma…! Wait!" Zell exclaimed, sprinting after his mother into the room only to find her rooted to a spot in the middle of the room, gazing at the pile of dirty magazines with a surprised look on her face.

Zell instinctively ducked away, shielding his face with his arms. He was expecting the world to collapse all around him and he wished for nothing more but the earth to swallow him up.

Rinoa put on the expression of a wounded, rueful dog.

Squall just looked smug.

All were expecting something very drastic to happen. Ma Dincht, however, eventually, seemed to be quite unimpressed by the general mood as she just shrugged, walked over to Zell's bed, gave one last scrutinizing look to the huge pile – and took one of the pillows on Zell's bed without another word.

"I told you not to take all the pillows, Zell. Watching TV without them isn't all that comfy."

With that, she turned around once more, being greeted by three teenagers which were literally gawking at her as she slowly, quietly started to walk towards the door. Three pairs of impossibly widened eyes followed her every move, their owners unable to make a sound.

When Ma Dincht reached the door, she turned around once more, studying all three teenagers out of calm eyes. "I'm not gonna say anything about that … mess over there. It's a normal thing to like as a teenager, after all…" she trailed off, then flexed her eyes upon Zell, a devilish little smile around her lips. "Though, I would have expected my only son to have better taste than titles such as Looking for the Golden Vagina."

Zell's jaw dropped. "Mother!"

"See? See?" Rinoa said excitedly. "I was right! It was just the titles!"

"Well, sorry! They don't have anything else in that store, okay?" Zell said defensively.

"Maybe you should switch shops, then," Zell's mother replied good-naturedly, causing both Zell and Rinoa to return their attention to the woman. They both looked at her with deep awe on their faces.

"Wow…" Rinoa muttered. "Mrs. Dincht. You are such a cool ma!"

Ma Dincht made a dismissive hand motion at that, but couldn't hide completely that she was flattered. Eventually, she just started giggling and it didn't take long for the raven-haired girl and the martial artist to join in. Soon after, all three of them were laughing out loud, Zell relieved that his mother was that cool, Rinoa relieved that Zell hadn't gotten into trouble and finding the whole situation to be hilarious in general. The only one who didn't laugh was Squall, who was sitting by himself on the floor, watching the trio with a frown the size of Balamb etched into his forehead.

"I'm surrounded by idiots," he muttered to himself. Then, he shook his head.

The End.

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