A/N: Sorry for the lack of updates! I hope everyone had a great Christmas!


Heat Stroke

She didn't come back until hours later. And during that time, he sat there, just thinking. Of course, to only kill time. It was rather boring to just sit in a room without doing anything. At Bevelle, he would always have to attend meetings, or do some paperwork. He felt like he didn't have responsibilities anymore, sitting in that room...and it bothered him. So, he went on to pondering. He thought back to the conversation he last had with her. She seemed angry, and he didn't know why. For some reason, it just made him feel...well...worried. And still...he didn't know why. He barely knew the girl, and now he was worried about her? He shook his head. What's going on with me? He looked out the window again. She said we were going to Bikanel Desert...where the Al Bheds were. So...why was he going to be taken there? What did the Al Bheds actually want with him? So many questions, and no one to answer them. At the moment...that's how things were for him. He felt lost, alone, confused. No one fully explained why he was here in the first place. That girl...the girl who brought him here...didn't even explain it to him. At least she told me something...After a while, he began to feel drowsy.

He heard a knock on the door and he sat up. It was her. "We're here." She smiled and left. He blinked and looked outside the window. He couldn't see anything. He gulped and walked out of the room.

Baralai now stood outside in front of what seemed to be a base, according to the girl. He looked around to see if he could find the girl, but she was nowhere in sight. Um...what now? He felt like an idiot, just standing there, but really now, what could he do?

Finally after what felt like an eternity, he felt someone tap him. He turned around and saw the girl.

"Follow me." Without waiting for a response, she walked off. And so, he followed. He felt eyes on him, which made him nervous. He knew he wasn't really welcomed here, and put his head down.

After a few minutes, the girl had led him to his room. "This..." she pointed. "is where you will be staying. I suggest that you don't go outside, seeing as your praetor, you're probably not used to the conditions." She slightly chuckled at his state. His attire was layered with sand, his hair was no longer white, His eyes were squinted. "You should rest." And she left him with that.

He walked into the tent in which he was lead to, plopped on the floor and closed his eyes.

An Hour Later

He slowly woke up, at a strange sight. Oh...yeah...I'm not at Bevelle anymore.

He sat up, then stood and reached out to the tent's cover. Baralai blinked a couple of times. I..I can't see anything..not even my own hand.

He walked out of the tent. So much for sight-seeing. Once again, the Al Bhed gave him glares, and he felt bad, but at the same time...amazed. How were the Al Bhed able to live in such conditions?

He'd much rather go back to Bevelle, where calm winds and a clear sky was. Maybe that's why the Al Bhed fly. He squinted as he saw someone approached him. It was the girl. "Hey, what are you doing out without goggles?" He didn't say anything. "Silly you." She giggled. "Here, you can borrow mine." She took off her goggles and handed it to him. He hesitated for a second before she grabbed his hand and put the goggles in them. "Don't worry, I've got a spare." That's..not what I'm worried about. She smiled at him. How can she be so cheerful? If anyone got lost in here...I doubt anyone would be able to find them...

She noticed that he was quiet and frowned. "...I know you miss Bevelle, and I'm sorry that I had to bring you here, but...you see..." After that, Baralai seemed light-headed. He couldn't hear what she was saying. His throat felt like it was on fire. He collapsed. "Praetor!" It was the last thing he heard before everything went black.

Three hours later

Rikku was standing outside a tent, pacing. "Okay...what should I say?" She stopped. "Wait, why am I worried about that?!" She shook her head, and began pacing again. The praetor seems to always be unconscious now. She frowned. That isn't good for his health, now is it? She began to pace faster. "What if he dies? Or gets amnesia from fainting too much a-and...and...hitting his head too much? What if he's in no condition to actually stay out here?" And then, the questions began. Weird ones, indeed. "What if...he gets blown away into the desert by some monster!?" Her eyes widened. "That's actually probable! His clothing can give him the lift that's needed!" She began to pace faster, and more barbaric questions came to mind.

...This is...the second time. He slowly sat up, he growned as his headache got worse. He blinked slowly, and registered where he was, the tent...again. This time however, he was hearing some weird things going on outside. A girl, yelling some weird things, and pacing, loud enough to actually be heard over the sandstorm. "What if...he falls into quick sand!? I'll never be able to lift him up, he's too heavy...hm..." His eyebrows arched, he was confused. He slowly opened the cover to his tent, and slightly smiled. It was her...she was the one pacing, saying weird things. Well, barbaric and out of this world things, really. She didn't notice he was there, but stopped pacing, and was now mumbling to herself.

He continued to watch her, not wanting to disturb her...thinking time, or something. He noticed her hair, the way it was put, so unique. He noticed how...cute she looked when she was thinking and smiled. He looked at her swirly green eyes as they looked at him in slight confusion. Wait, what!? His eyes widened and he fell from his tent. By the time he got up, she reached him, hand on hip.

He nervously smiled, as she glared into his eyes. He never saw her look so...pissed off. And then, she suddenly smiled. "Looks like you're doing well." And walked off. He looked at her retreating figure with confusion, but smiled anyway.


A/N: ah...not that well. I hope it was at least okay. I'll try to update more! Review? (:

Chapter 3: Good To See You, Cid's Girl

Her eyes widened, as she looked past Baralai and smiled. Baralai looked at her in confusion, and turned around, to see someone walking towards them. He walked with confidence, a smirk and Rikku ran toward him. "I can't believe you're here!" "Same here, Cid's Girl, same here." The newly arrived man looked at Baralai, with almost a cold expression, and Baralai couldn't imagine why.