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TEN.

Rinoa had never been superstitious. Para-magic had always been a sort of garbled science to her, something which a faraway professor had concocted, and something which those estranged Balamb SeeDs used proficiently. It had escaped her mind-frame, a sort of intangible something which didn't need to be explained.

But now she found herself counting the candles in her room and wondering briefly if Edea had any spellbooks or if sorceresses could have such powers as transmutation, telekineses or telepathy. She briefly wondered, more often than not, if she could shift time and space and warp the dimension.

Magic was not just a science to her anymore. It was an unexplained mythological entity that presented its darkness in her, further distancing her from others in her age bracket; it was why she felt so terribly alone, even when surrounded by other SeeDs.

Because Para-magic is, when reviewed, scientific. Her magic is not.

She has a hard time, later on, explaining to Squall that she does not want to use her magic or become an honorary SeeD member. At first, he seems hurt, but when she points out that he is her Knight and has to understand it a little, he shuts up. The next day he wakes her with a soft kiss and a comment that they should have a holiday.

NINE.

Squall had always despised the colour orange. It did not meld well with his physique and whenever Rinoa pressed an orange item of clothing on his person, it usually found its surreptitious way into a trashcan.

Rinoa one day had had enough of the constant aversion Squall had to orange, and so asked "What's so bad about it anyway?"

Squall had no answer. But when he confided in Ellone a few weeks after this event had transpired, she told him it had been his favourite colour when he was a kid and he never parted with his infamous shirt. She had rifled through her room and eventually found the worn-out, threadbare shirt he'd worn as a five-year-old.

He never threw this into the trashcan, even if it was more deserving. No, the last remainder of the past he'd tried to forget remained under lock and key, and Ellone always did wonder why he'd asked her.

Rinoa loved to bring up the subject of the shirt at dinner parties, but he was beyond caring. He had everything now.

EIGHT.

Quistis Trepe was renowned for her whip.

The teenaged male population of Garden joked that her whip was not the tool of a dominatrix (although some of the hardcore Trepies remained fixated on this theory) but rather a weapon of mass destruction. Quistis did not refute this (but gave detention to the Trepies).

Quistis never parted with her whip, not even for a second. It had its respective slot on her belt, and if she was entering a weapon-free zone, it always managed to be smuggled in. Squall had a hard time explaining to the Customs Officers at FH that she was not a serial killer, and that it was 'standard SeeD procedure'. He never asked, because he was not one to pry. She thanked him. Quistis herself could not fathom an answer that explained her unnatural devotion to her weapon.

Seifer had put it into context for her when she'd made the mistake of visiting him in prison. It's just like you, trying to protect the imaginary when you couldn't protect the real stuff, huh?

Somehow, he was right, and somehow, she always felt second-rate when compared to Rinoa. And somehow, that maternal feeling really was the imaginary.

SEVEN.

Irvine once mentioned to Selphie that 'being a sharpshooter isn't like anything else; you're only alone because you're afraid that if you get close to someone you might have to kill them one day'. Selphie hadn't understood, and he'd come to the sinking realisation that not many would.

He had been the only one to remember their childhood, but had not said anything until the opportune moment because he wasn't sure whether he wanted to let them in on it, or if he wanted to hold unto something that was just … his. The thing that broke him was when he glimpsed Selphie in the graveyard, crying to herself over lost friends, and he knew that she needed consolation that she wasn't alone.

It was strange, he concluded. He had always thought that being alone was his Fate, and he would objectify women as a comfort source. He had no shame in admitting it. But now––he had something solid, a sort of foundation, and he was a little scared.

Selphie had become his beacon and now he could see everything with amazing clarity.

He could now get close to people, but more importantly, her.

Commitment had never been the issue. It had always been the fear of it.

SIX.

Zell Dincht had decided, with outmost conviction, that he would become a martial artist when he had gotten a punching bag for his twelfth birthday. It had originally been intended to be used so he would spend the copious amounts of energy he had, but had morphed to something else entirely.

After he'd found out that his Ma wasn't his real Ma but was more of a foster Ma, he hadn't cared. Because he always liked to simplify things, and he knew that as long as he loved her and had devoted his time to becoming a martial artist to protect her, actual biological relation wouldn't matter.

His real parents were somewhere else, and having never met them, he couldn't say he missed them.

Zell's world was a simple one, in which the puzzle pieces always fitted and Quistis thought with some reflection that perhaps his way of living was the best one. When Zell was faced with a challenge (such as him being a loud-mouth) and it had in turn caused missiles to be sent to Trabia and Balamb, he had only felt responsible until Selphie forgave him.

Because, really, moving on is the most important thing.

Quistis admires him for his strength.

FIVE.

Selphie had always been a dreamer.

She loved FH because of this. The sun panels lining the city were her haven. She would sneak down there during a prolonged mission and watch the clouds go past, captured in her own reveries and fantasies, a stranger to reality. It was perhaps because of this inconsistency that people found in her an attracting force.

Everyone else had a constant, something that was the same about them. Squall was the solid wall of a person, Rinoa was the free-spirited one, Zell was the thick one, Irvine the flirtatious sharpshooter and Quistis the bookworm. But Selphie could feel herself changing, shifting, remembering bits and pieces of a whole but not quite.

She never really knew what to say about herself, when things should be said, and she felt out-of-place in the Garden because of this. She could be whoever she wanted, whenever she wanted, with the tagline of being happy-go-lucky while going about it. The others were conditioned.

But she was free.

Selphie liked to dream, to fantasise, to fly––on broken wings, in a world where a lot of things were broken but she would try and fix them someday.

FOUR.

Seifer was an imprisoned man.

When he thought on it, he realised he didn't mean literally, even if he was jailed for crimes that he'd committed (and it had been the painstaking human nature, the desire for power and fame, which had caused all this anyway) but spiritually.

He was like a caged bird, and feeling guilty about things he wasn't sorry for didn't work. He had killed, under the orders of a sorceress who had eventually tried the age-old trick of world obliteration, destruction, domination and he hadn't paid attention toward the end (her incessant speed impediment proved annoying).

He was imprisoned because he had nowhere to go even if he hadn't been destined for life imprisonment. He'd never lived life because he wanted to, but rather because he had to, and jumping at the chance of having something to be happy about was a fool's decision.

It was why he'd pursued Rinoa, why he wouldn't let the thought of her beauty and exuberance completely fade from his mind, even when she was in the arms of his enemy; the one who he'd never quite measured up to (but at the same time had). Squall, he considered, was just the him that could've been, if he hadn't been pushed to his limits.

Squall was him, as he had been before he'd walked the final mile. Maybe if he was sorry for what he'd done then he would be set free. Like Squall.

THREE.

Edea had, sometime after the defeat of Ultimecia, gone to see Cid. Their relationship had been rocky, from the first of those hallucinations tempting her with material things, to when things had gone totally and utterly wrong. She had been almost afraid of confronting her once-husband.

But he had merely choked on his drink and embraced her clumsily, letting his lips brush hers and asking her to forgive him for being a failed Knight, to let him try again, to never leave, and to most importantly let him love her. Edea had been bedazzled by his devotion, more so than ever.

And it was then that she remembered why she married him.

Edea had never been good at interacting with others. It usually ended in embarrassment and a pointed look which suggested she would be better off rotting away in a deserted house in Centra, and so that's what she did. Cid followed her there, though, and offered to help and then she told him she loved him.

Edea had finally let someone past the barriers of her mind and when she told him she was a sorceress, he'd given her a bemused smile and said so I can be your Knight too?

And even in old age, he was handsome.

TWO.

Laguna Loire was an unconfident, blundering man.

Julia had seen this and accepted it, and regarded it as one of his quirks. He'd felt almost shy, like a schoolboy, under her observations that night. When he reflected on his limited time with Julia, he was happy.

But it didn't compare.

Raine encompassed all that made him perfect and then some. With her, he felt like he had the chance to be a man; the chance to show that he wasn't just some common idiot. And he had loved her, and lost her, and remained firm in his determination that he would impress her, as she was most definitely watching from above.

He'd become the President, just for her. Just for Squall.

When he told Squall that he was his father, and Squall's eyes widened in that way that Rinoa called cute, he knew that Raine had given him this last chance at happiness. When Squall eventually called him 'dad' publicly, he felt like crying.

Raine always sacrificed everything for him, and now he was going to show her that he could sacrifice, too. He had to.

ONE.

Ellone used to think her powers were a kind of gift, something that a higher power had given her so that she could change the world.

It was that kind of naïve imagining which had led her to be so unsure of her potential and so convinced that her powers, effectively, could not change a thing but one's own opinion. The fundamental rule of not being able to change the past, but perhaps seeing something different, still stuck in her mind.

Then she watched as Squall trekked across the world to heal Rinoa, as he came to space to find her, begged her to help and she did––and, somehow, Rinoa woke and Squall was happy. It was then that she began thinking that maybe, just maybe, her powers did have the potential she originally imagined.

The feeling of elation remained as she aided them in fighting Ultimecia during Time Compression, and helping to right reality again (not that she would admit it to Squall) was her part in the tale.

When she went to visit Raine's tombstone with Laguna, she felt her almost-mother's pride through the soil. It was then that Ellone thought of herself as strong.

Since then, she's had many reassurances, the main one of them being Squall's love for his sister and how they all can come together sometimes and bask in the wonderment of being family.

ZERO.


I have no idea what the point of this is. I guess it's just following the theme of each character; what's most obvious in their mannerisms, or qualities, or thoughts. Something like that.
They kind of got longer toward the end. I think Seifer wins for length. Oh, and it's simple format; two people most important to Squall at the beginning and end, Laguna in the same place as Squall and everyone else in between. I don't own Final Fantasy.