Disclaimer: I don't own Trinity Blood. Gah.
Truth or Dare
"… You have to be kidding me."
Father Abel laughed, rubbing the back of his head and closing his eyes sheepishly. "Well… not really," he murmured. "That's what we usually do in our spare time." He gestured weakly at Leon and the Professor, both of whom were currently lounging against the fountain in the garden of Her Majesty, Queen Esther of Albion.
"You play games," Ion said weakly.
"Well, yes. But it's fun! Isn't it, Leon?"
"Do… I have to answer that honestly?" The dark-haired Father smirked.
"LEON! I am trying to encourage my pupil here!!"
Leon laughed while William smirked, turning his head away to gaze into the water; not to be discouraged, Abel turned to Ion. "Come now, Ion, it really is fun," he pleaded. "Just one game?"
"… Just one?"
"Yes. I'll… I'll even let you pick the game!"
Oh, Lord, the puppy dog eyes. Ion had to stop that before it even started! "Okay, okay! Um…" What game was likely to cause the least amount of damage? "How… how about truth or dare?"
"Excellent!" Abel grinned before turning to their two other companions. "Leon, Professor? Do you want to play as well?"
Leon grinned, pushing off the fountain so he stood to his full height. "Truth or dare? Eh, why not. It's been awhile since I had a round." William just shrugged and puffed on his pipe, which Abel took as a silent yes, nodding his head. "Okay, I'll go first. Hmm… Leon, truth or dare?"
"I'm in a brave mood today." Leon tilted his head to the side. "What the hell. Truth."
"Well… is it true that at one time you had to dress up as a woman for a mission?"
Ion's eyes widened and his face flushed; William choked slightly on his pipe, coughing. Leon scowled and crossed his arms over his chest. "It… it was just once, okay?! Just…"
"You DID?" Ion now had the image of a feminine Leon burned into his mind's eye.
"Just once! And I sure as hell didn't enjoy it!!"
With a huff, Leon flopped back down onto the fountain's edge, scowling. Not to far away, Esther was currently walking through the garden, gazing at the flowers; he watched her for a moment, revenge taking shape. "Hey, Abel? It's my turn, right?"
"Well then… Ion?"
"Truth or dare?"
Ion swallowed hard. It was just a silly Terran game; why did he suddenly feel so nervous? "Um… d-dare."
"Are you sure?" Leon's smirk slowly returned.
"Okay… Ion, I dare you… to kiss Esther."
A moment of dead silence; then…
Ion's shout was loud enough to have even Esther look over in surprise and concern, her eyes curious. The young Count's cheeks had flushed red enough to rival her hair as he looked down. Leon grinned. "Oh, but it's a dare. If you don't do it, you'll be considered chicken…"
"Father ABEL! Save me!!"
"I'm sorry, Ion." Trying hard not to laugh, Abel pushed his glasses back up his nose. "Leon does make a very good point… you chose dare, so now you have to do the dare…"
"Can't I… just kiss the ground or something?"
"Hell no." Leon's grin widened, if that was even possible. "The dare was to kiss Esther. You like her, don't you?"
A muffled squeak escaped Ion, but he was hopelessly cornered with no way out; and what really sucked was that he knew it, too. He turned away, scowled, and began to walk purposely in Esther's direction, muttering a few choice words in Imperial under his breath. Leon laughed. "Ten bucks the kid chickens out," he bet.
Abel chuckled. "Twenty bucks and dinner that he goes through with it," he murmured, ever trusting in his young pupil's abilities.
"You're on, Father."
Meanwhile, Ion was busy trying to figure out he could possibly get back into Esther's good graces after this. Maybe groveling would work…
"Ion." She smiled at him as he approached. "Are you alright? I heard your shout…"
"Oh, um… I'm fine. Just something Leon said." Ion shrugged, trying desperately to remain casual about the whole thing, but his eyes were drawn to her mouth almost immediately. He wondered what kissing her would be like…
… And he'd better stop that train of thought right. This. Instant.
Oh Lord, and she looked so innocent too. So trusting.
Just do it quickly, he ordered. Do it, retreat, and come back later to beg for forgiveness. Blaming Leon would probably help a little, too.
Well, now or nothing.
"Forgive me," he murmured; and, before he had any time to ponder this or feel regret or just back out, he kissed her—quickly, just a light brush of his lips against hers, before he darted away as fast as possible, blushing even darker.
Esther's eyes widened, and her jaw dropped just slightly, gaping. Her cheeks flushed a light pink.
At the fountain, Abel let out a whoop of triumph.
"I WIN!! Father Leon, you have to buy me dinner!"
"OH COME ON!!"
For the rest of the day, Ion made it a point to avoid Esther in any way he knew how, even if it meant diving into shrubs and water and God knew what else to stay out of her line of sight. As darkness fell over the gardens and the moon soared into the sky Ion walked down the path, scuffing his foot against the stone.
"Oh, Ion! There you are."
Ion's head shot up and his eyes widened to match a deer caught in the headlights of an airship; but his feet chose this moment to fail him, and all he could do was stand frozen as Esther darted to him; belatedly he remembered hearing someone hum before she'd called. It had probably been her. "Esther," he squeaked.
"I was wondering where you'd gotten to." Her eyes sparkled cheerfully as she met his gaze. "You just ran off, so I never had a chance to…"
"Chance to what?" His voice cracked. Oh, Lord. She was going to just want to remain friends, wasn't she? She was probably going to say it was okay, but she didn't feel the same, but they could still be friends… damn Leon and his dare…!
… And suddenly he registered the fact that her lips were against his in a gentle kiss; before he could start thinking again she pulled away and smiled up at him briefly.
"Just thought I'd return the gesture," she murmured, and walked away calmly, a small smile still gracing her lips. It only took Ion a few moments to realize she was humming again.
"Hey, wait!" He raced after her, not wanting to be left by himself; not after that, not when he felt all warm and tingly inside. She smiled and stopped to wait for him.
Ion decided truth or dare wasn't that bad of a game, after all.
I must have worked on this for hours to get it just right, and even now I feel like the ending's kind of... cheap. Ah well. I just felt like writing something humerous after With Me when I Die.
Read and review, please!