All the World's a Banquet

An FFIX fanfic.

Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy IX. It belongs to Square-Enix. I claim no ownership other than the fic and the idea itself. I make no profit from this whatsoever. It's just a hobby of mine.

Author's note: Alas, I have decided to try my hand at an FFIX fanfic, and this idea hit me while my mom and I were grocery shopping. Odd, no? And well, there aren't that many Quina fics out there, so I decided to write something humorous revolving around him/her. Hey, the idea of writing about something that looks like a genetic cross between the Pillsbury Doughboy, (either on crack or gone horribly, HORRIBLY wrong, take your pick) and the Michelin Man, with hideously applied clown makeup, possible cross-dressing tendencies, somewhat primitive vocabulary skills, and a tongue that would put Gene Simmons to shame amused me. And for the record, I hope you know who Gene Simmons is. If you don't then either you're very young, live under a rock, or have never listened to/heard of KISS. They're a bit before my time, mind you. I'm not THAT old.

"Zidane, I hungry." Said Quina as they trekked across the plains on their way to the next town or in Quina's case, waddled.

The monkey-tailed thief rolled his eyes in exasperation. "You're ALWAYS hungry Quina, what else is new?." He waved his hand dismissively at the odd white thing that tagged along with his party merrily in search of new things to eat. He could have sworn that Quina had eaten less than five minutes ago, but that was a Qu for you. They probably had stomach acids that could eat through steel.

"I hungry again."

Vivi, Eiko and the rest tagged along behind them, their weapons at the ready should a monster attack them. Zidane kept a close eye on the two smallest members of their party, should Quina get ideas into turning them into appetizers. He remembered the time Eiko had let Mog out of her dress by mistake, thinking Quina was nowhere in sight, and the rest of the party had been alerted to her very distressed cries when she screamed bloody murder and they had run outside of their tent only to find Quina with Mog's pom-pom sticking out if its enormous mouth, making for a rather comical, if not disturbing sight. Zidane guessed the poor moogle was quite traumatized by that event. Eiko had been near to shrieking hysterics and had resorted to using words that Zidane didn't think should have been in a six-year olds' vocabulary. He thought she had most likely picked them up during their trip to Treno.

Zidane looked back in annoyance. "Go find something to eat, then."

"But there nothing here. Is only grass. And trees. And flowers."

"Eat the damn flowers then." Suggested Amarant.

They were all cranky and short-tempered as of late. They now had to venture into a town for more supplies because their resident glutton had eaten just about everything in their medicinal inventory. Potions, tents, ethers, remedies, antidotes-all gone. It was only by some miracle that Quina had yet to eat any of their weapons and valuable accessories. Those, thankfully, had been spared. Mostly. The only casualty had been one of Vivi's mage staffs, which Quina had been happily using as a toothpick. It had been his favorite, and he had been quite upset about it.

Quina seemed to fail to comprehend the disgusted and outraged looks written on the rest of the party's faces and didn't seem to grasp the concept that it would drain their funds considerably to replace all that he/she had devoured.

The world according to a Qu was one giant banquet. They would pretty much eat anything and everything that was fit for consumption. And even things that weren't. Or at least, try to. Zidane had seen Quina eat things that would have turned anyone else's stomach. His included. Perhaps a more accurate analogy would be to say that the world according to Quina was that the world was it's oyster, and the Qu would gleefully pry it open with it's giant fork and eat the pearl inside. And maybe the whole oyster.

And he could never take the thing anywhere in public. They either got curious or horrified stares from when Quina would sniff random people or poke them experimentally with its giant fork. It was always "Quina, don't eat that! Quina, spit that out! Quina, stop scaring people! Quina, stop chasing Vivi! No Quina, that's NOT food! No Quina, you can't eat that! Quina, stop chasing those squirrels. No Quina, the moon's not made of cheese."

And so on. And so forth. That's what you got for traveling with a walking sideshow attraction. Of course, it wasn't like anyone else was exactly what one would call "normal"-they themselves were quite a motley bunch. However, the pale, fat Gourmand stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb.

One alarming incident in particular had been when they had been traipsing through a swamp and Quina had come across some mushrooms with some…hallucinogenic properties, much to their dismay.

It had taken Dagger's sleep spell to knock Quina out until the effects wore off.

Afterwards they effectively banned Quina from any and all mushrooms. And anything else that looked even remotely suspicious.

They were exhausted. They were footsore. They were battered, beaten, and running low on magic. They really couldn't take many more battles and all sincerely hoped they reached a town soon.

"Where we going?" Asked the Qu in its usual cheerful manner.

Freya turned and looked at it coldly and spoke in a highly irritated manner. "We're TRYING to find a town to replenish our supplies because YOU devoured them all! That's where were going! Or is that infantile, gluttonous brain of yours capable of retaining memory for more than five seconds!"

"Oh, yeah. Me forget. But still, potions tasty! Me like them very much!" It flopped its massive tongue in a wide, slobbery circle over its face at the memory like a Bandersnatch in it's characteristic clockwise lick when it thought of something delectable. Or at least, delectable from its perspective. With Quina, you never knew. One thing was for sure, it certainly wasn't a picky eater.

"Yeah. We kinda figured that." Replied Amarant in a deadpan tone.

At long last, a few battles later, the exhausted heroes came across a town, much to their infinite relief. They happily ran to it and entered, in search of the item shop. Quina followed with its usual dopey grin plastered on it's face and it's tongue lolling out. All went well as the bizarre Qu creature happily sniffed the offerings from the various street vendors dotting the street, poking merchandise with it's fork and gobbling "free" samples.

That is, until one vendor shouted one particular word shouted one particular word that made the Qu's ears perk up. (Figuratively speaking, since Quina had no visible ears to speak of.)

"Frog legs, get your delicious frog legs for sale! Only thirty gil!"

Needless to say, Quina responded quite enthusiastically to that.

"FROG LEGS! I SO HUNGRY!"

Zidane sighed as he shook his head and his shoulders drooped. How were they going to pay for the damages of Quina's rampage?

One thing was for sure, he was going to have to fight a lot of monsters to cover this.

It was going to be one hell of a long- and expensive trip.

Fin

Sooo….what did you think of my little one-shot? I know it's not that great, but I hope you found it at least mildly amusing. This is my first attempt at an FFIX fanfic and I don't think it was that bad. I like to think my writing is at least improving. Please, R&R and tell me what you think! Constructive criticism is always welcomed! I also have a Zidane and Dagger in the works as well. Hope you liked it! Keep in mind, this is the first thing I've written in a while, and I might be a little out of practice. Time, unfortunately, doesn't allow me as much time to write as I would like, but I like to get it in when I can and when inspiration hits! Hopefully the characters were remotely IC...if they weren't, please tell me.