Disclaimer: Don't own anything related to the Final Fantasy franchise in general, FF8 in particular and make no profit off of this whatsoever. Not even personal satisfaction....


Keep in mind that the first chapter was posted three years ago, as an attempt to write a Squall/Zell from third persons POV, without a thought of a sequel.
People have been requesting one since, as I should have figured, but it wasn't until recently that I decided to give it a shot.
Now to the warning: I do realize what it was that made the first one such a "success" (and I use that term VERY lightly), but for some reason Seifer and Irvine wouldn't behave that way.
I can't write Irvine IC, and it's even more difficult to make him gay. Seifer on the other hand as always been bi in my opinion, but the sexy and confident attitude that he usually has was GONE when this story came about.

So please, take these things into consideration before you throw me to the sharks. =o)

Seduction 101 - Final Exam

After Seifer had straightened the mismatched decorative pillows on the sofa (a gift from Selphie, who not only lacked a sense of interior design, but was also colour-blind, apparently) for the third time in half an hour, Seifer had to verbally tell himself to stop going completely mental.

"Relax, dammit", he muttered, not at all taking his own advice.

What did he really have to be nervous about?, he tried asking himself.

He'd memorized the notes he made after Zell's very informative demonstration and had everything planned and ready, even added a margin for errors.

And he looked good, he was conceited enough to recognize that. Blond hair run through with just enough gel to make it look artfully tousled, something he should teach Zell some time, as a return favour.

Button-down shirt untucked, cuffs unbuttoned. Jeans loose and lazy without being baggy, in unwashed dark denim and whole, no strategically placed rips and tears.

He'd considered wearing a t-shirt, something colourful or with a cool print, but it felt too casual and Irvine and his smooth talking persona would most likely appreciate an ironed black shirt instead.

And if Irvine, by some chance, wasn't interested, Seifer vowed that there would be no awkward encounters or odd evasive manoeuvres to avoid him in the hallways. Seifer was a man, and also an adult and he could admit defeat and accept reality if necessary.

It would suck, but he would do it. Hyne knows, he'd done it before.


Irvine was fashionably late, as he so sardonically put it, when he sashayed through the door, smelling so good that Seifer might have swooned a little.

It was heady scent, but not heavy, musk most likely, and sandalwood that heated up his blood and sent his mind to a dark and predatory place. Seifer wanted that smell infused in his sheets, on his own skin, lingering in his nostrils like a constant reminder of what he had to look forward to when he returned to his bedroom.

He pulled himself back, just as he was about to grab Irvine's auburn hair and yank him back against him.

"I was starting to think you wouldn't show", Seifer said, pleased to note that his voice didn't sound as husky as he'd feared.

Irvine turned and tilted his head, a teasing half smile on his lips. "And miss your little soiree? Wouldn't dream of it."

Seifer chuckled, motioning Irvine further into the living room and offered him a seat, taking the moment when Irvine's back was turned to appreciate the tight jeans and the burgundy-red tank top the cowboy was dressed in.

"I asked you to come and give me your opinion on Quistis' birthday party", he lied. "I wouldn't exactly call that a 'soiree'."

"Still, it would have been rude to stand you up."

Irvine gave him a look from under lowered lashes as he demonstratively sat down, smack in the middle of the sofa, leaving Seifer just enough room to squeeze down on either side of him. So much for comfortable distance…

"Drink?" If there was a slight pitch in his voice, Seifer chose to ignore it.

"Sure, whatever you're having."

In the kitchen, Seifer hesitated with his hand around two bottles of beer.

Not exactly the most romantic beverage in the world, but anything more extravagant seemed like making too much of an effort and was also currently unavailable.

Seifer would rather gnaw off his left foot than offer bottled water, so beer it would have to be.

He did pour it in glasses, though, for his own sanity's sake.

Irvine on the other hand, looked a little disappointed when he accepted his glass, but Seifer decided not to care about that.

"So, you got any good ideas?"

The sniper slowly took a sip from his glass, eyes locked with Seifer's as he swallowed and then leaned against the backrest, one arm splayed casually along it, fingers just behind Seifer's shoulder.

"I've got plenty."

Seifer choked but pretended to laugh. "Anything party-related? And preferably suitable for Quistis."

His response was a low, husky snicker and a shrug.

"I don't know man, she's working that whip and stuff, I think she might be into more than we think. Why are you doing this again? I thought she was riding your ass on a daily basis?"

"She is, but she's got good reason, can't really hold it against her. But seriously? Selphie's turning this into a carnival that will set Gardens' budget back with…. A lot, while making it look like it's a party for a five-year-old."

Irvine grinned and nodded, all while sipping leisurely from his beer.

"I can't very well ask Squall, and Chickie's suggestions would undoubtedly be too weird or too crazy. Sure hell can't ask Quistis herself, she'll either take full control or scrap it completely. Which I really shouldn't care about, but she is turning 25 and I-"

"Alright! I'm convinced. And flattered."

"You should be. So, ideas?"

After pulling off every single trick in the notebook, at least twice, under the pretence of planning Quistis' party (he would hand all notes over to Selphie later, anyway) Seifer was ready to throw in the towel.

All Irvine had done at his advances was leer and offer a conspiratorial wink and Seifer was certain the cowboy had him all figured out and was just tugging him along, mentally laughing at his feeble attempts at seduction.

He'd even put a hand his Irvine's thigh, for Hyne's sake, and he was no further into the brunet's pants than he'd been two hours ago.

When Irvine didn't respond satisfactorily at the 'casual touch' technique this time around either, Seifer tossed the notepad with the party plans onto the coffee-table and surrendered with a sigh.

"You're enjoying this, aren't you?" he asked, leaning forward to rest his elbows on his knees, removing Irvine from his line of vision.

"I can read the signs, Seif. I could have written than book."

"Yeah, I figured."

He stood and collected their empty glasses, packing up and dropping the act, but when he turned to leave, Irvine shifted on the sofa and managed to put a foot against the table, trapping it neatly between Seifer's thighs.

"Hang on there a second, Blondie. Never said it wasn't working."

Seifer frowned down at the sharpshooter, looking for any signs of mockery. He could spot those a mile away.

"Yeah? Well, I doubt it's supposed to be that obvious."

Irvine shrugged and slouched down further into the sofa cushions, displaying himself sinfully and Seifer's fingers itched as he held on tightly to the glasses.

The foot trapped between Seifer's legs, tapped gently against denim, in a rhythm that almost matched his pulse.

"Like I said, I know what to look for. However, it's nice to be on he receiving end for once."

Suddenly, Irvine broke eye contact as his eyes darted around for a few moments, before settling somewhere on Seifer's torso. "Besides, thought stuff like that wouldn't work on you."

Irvine was clearly flustered now, and Seifer pounced on it immediately. Practise makes perfect, after all.

"How come?"

Seifer felt his shoulders drop, his chin lift up, his whole posture changing, growing more confident as Irvine's flirting façade crumbled.

The sniper shrugged, tensing up, something Seifer sensed by the increased pressure on his thigh.

A smile pulled his lips into a comfortable half-smirk, eyebrow quizzically arched.

"You seem too cool for flirting and stuff. Always figured that if you wanted something, you'd come get it."

"Hmm. So, how long have you been waiting?"

If Seifer had been able to look at himself from the outside, he would have been surprised at how seamlessly he fitted into the teasing, somewhat mocking demeanour. Like he was putting on his coat, or unsheathing Hyperion. A second skin, or a second nature, without a second thought.

Irvine snorted a quiet laugh, obviously not as relaxed as he'd been just a few minutes ago, like Seifer's sudden plunge back into normalcy made him uncomfortable.

"A while."

"A while? Well, time is relative around here, so…what? How long is a while, for you?"

Irvine shook his head and his foot started drawing interesting patterns on Seifer's leg.

"Long enough to stop trying to make you notice, but not long enough to give up on the idea."

Seifer frowned a little, deciding to turn serious and sat down on the coffee table, putting Irvine's foot over his knee.

"Stop making me notice? But you've never tried anything with me."

At that, Irvine burst out laughing. "You really have no idea, do you?"

Pulling his foot back, so he could stand up, Irvine took the glasses from Seifer hand and went into the kitchen, shaking his head disbelievingly with each step.

Seifer followed, unsure of what to expect next. He was determined not to give Irvine back any advantage though, not until this was settled.

"You need to elaborate", he demanded as Irvine put the dishes away.

The cowboy turned and leaned his hip against the counter, folding his arms over his chest, again fixing his gaze on Seifer's chest.

"Fine. I've had a crush on you for…for a year, at least. I came to B-Garden with this stupid idea in my head that you and I would be…that you'd at least notice me. But you had you mind set on Squall then, so I hung back and when Zell happened, I thought…But you never did a damn thing, didn't seem to care, so I figured you weren't interested."

Seifer chuckled, incredulous.

"You never wondered why I was such spaz around you?"

Irvine smiled. "I was probably too busy being a spaz around you to notice."

Seifer grinned, all confidence back now, like stepping into well worn shoes, pleased to see how Irvine straightened at his approach, lilac eyes widening as he stepped in close, only to glaze over, long lashes fanning over flushed cheekbones and-

Seifer mentally slapped himself for the ridiculous commentary and took a final step, bringing him close enough to feel Irvine's rapid breaths against his neck.

He gave himself another point when he noticed the snipers normally so steady hands twitch, like they were barely restraining themselves from reaching up and grabbing a hold.

Seifer apparently needed to coax a little.

He leaned in, mouth close to Irvine's ear. "Come on, Irvine", he whispered, bracketing the brunet between his arms, hands on the counter behind. "What's supposed to happen now, in that book of yours?"

"I don't know. I was kinda hoping you'd kiss me, but-"

Seifer leaned in fast, like he was really going for a kiss and Irvine fell silent, face turned up expectantly, but he stopped just short of touching and shook his head.

"I was under the impression that when you reach this stage, you're supposed to make him work for it. I'm pretty sure…"

Seifer let his lower lip brush gently against Irvine's just shy enough of tickling and then leaned away, retrieving the now worn notebook from his back pocket, taking great delight in the whimper that Irvine unwillingly released.

He pointedly flipped a few pages and hummed in confirmation. "Yeah, like I thought, Zell said-"

"Oh, fuck Zell!"

Irvine lunged forward, fused his lips to Seifer's and rather unceremoniously shoved his tongue inside his mouth. The blond had time to think that Irvine's patience needed to be tested more often, before the sniper stepped in close enough to grind against him and Seifer's breath went out of him.
But he didn't pull back, couldn't fathom the thought, and just breathed deep through his nose and let his arms rest possessively at the small of Irvine's back.

The kiss was intense, all pent up frustration and desire, and Seifer brain kept screaming 'FINALLY!' as their tongues duelled.

Time stopped and sped up as they kissed and Seifer didn't care to keep track, only knowing that the kiss was hotter than hell and twice as dirty,

When they eventually parted, Irvine was panting like a racehorse after a derby and Seifer had to support their weight and locking his knees to keep from falling over."Gotta hand it to Chickie", he said, getting his hands under Irvine's tank top, shuddering as the brunet ran a practised hand over his crotch and began to undo his belt.

"What's Zell got to do with this?" Irvine asked hoarsely, flipping a button open on Seifer's jeans.

"Well, nothing, except that the little bastard was right…for once."

THE END, for good this time!

Holy crap, I had totally forgotten how much the HTML-format SUCKS to upload! I'll go through this one more time though, soon, to give it one last check up, but right now it's too late, I'm too tired and in too much pain to care. And it just started raining....

EDIT: Ok, so I uploaded it again. There could still be some mistakes in there since my stories are perpetually unbeated, but try and ignore them, yes? For me?

I really hope I didn't disappoint you too much with this, but this was my way of giving you some closure concerning this story. Please review!

Hugs, Z