A/N: Short fic, written on a burst of inspiration. :)


Determination

Elie narrowed her eyes as she glared at her best friend, who was currently engulfed in a silly game they had picked up from the last town they had stopped at for supplies. Haru continued to ignore her, fiddling with the puzzle pieces, trying to force them to click into place. It was a losing battle.

Don't misunderstand; Elie wasn't upset about Haru ignoring her. On the contrary, she relished in the silence that accompanied solitude. What annoyed the blonde, however, was the fact that every time Haru tried and failed at the puzzle, he grew more and more frustrated, to the point that his knuckles turned white and his fingertips red and raw. One would think that after a few tries, he would simply give up and go do something productive with his time. Not Haru, though.

Determination shone on his face as his intelligent grey eyes swept over the puzzle. Elie's scowl deepened. Determination. It was that stupid emotion's fault that Haru had wasted a better half of the day sitting on the deck of the airship, fiddling with a freakin toy. It was because of determination that Haru hadn't given up already; the reason why he tried over and over, energy renewed with more ferocity every time he failed.

He made a wrong move, and the puzzle restored itself to the original form, taunting him with that same failure. He growled and set at it again. Elie felt like growling herself. Why did he care about this stupid toy so much?!

"Haru," she stated as calmly as she could. The boy didn't so much as flinch, still completely focused on the task at hand. She lost all patience then. "Haru! Look at me, dammit!"

He started, averting his eyes from the horrid puzzle to stare at her in confusion, "Huh? What? What's wrong?"

She folded her arms, "Do you know what time it is?"

"Um…" he glanced at the setting sun. "Dinner-time? Oh, man, did they send you out to get me because I'm late to dinner?" he panicked.

Elie rolled her eyes, "Oh my god, Haru. I've been out here for about an hour now waiting for you to finish that stupid thing. Did you not even notice me?"

"O-of course I did!" Haru mustered, trying to look convincing. "I just though you… left for a while."

"I did," Elie deadpanned. "I left, came back, left, came back, left, and came back again! And you're still focused on that idiotic toy!"

He blinked, "I'm close to finishing it; I can't stop now."

"Why not?" she demanded. "It's obvious that you can't beat it. Save yourself the time and give up."

Haru stared at her as if she were an alien from another planet. When he spoke, it was slowly, as if he was considering every word before saying it, "What if you got kidnapped?"

Elie scoffed at the idea, "We're on the airship; I'm not going to get kidnapped."

"But what if you did?" Haru persisted, grey eyes shining at the point he was trying to get across. "What if someone flew in and grabbed you right now, holding you in a prison cell deep underground with no way out? Would you want me to rescue you?"

"Uh… I guess…" Truth be told, Elie would be lost if ever in that situation. Her only light that would pierce the darkness would be the thought that Haru would save her.

"But what if I wasn't strong enough to get through the guards standing watch? You wouldn't want me to merely give up because I didn't make it the first time."

Elie was beginning to see where this was going.

Haru continued, "Or what if our friends told me that it was hopeless; that you couldn't be saved and that we should just leave you behind? There's no way in hell I would even consider doing that, because you mean too much to me. So I would keep trying and trying until I finally broke you out."

"Haru…"

"But if I didn't have my determination, I wouldn't have broken through the enemy's defenses. I wouldn't have been able to make it to the cell…to you." at this he stopped talking, smiling slightly as he let that sink in. "So you see, Elie, I can't give up on this puzzle. It may just be a toy, but I wouldn't give up on you, or any of my friends."

Elie finally found her voice, "But there's a difference between one of us and a toy."

Haru shrugged, "True, but if I stop trying on the toy, how do you know that I wouldn't stop trying for you?"

She thought about this for a moment, and Haru let her contemplate what he told her, glancing to the left to see Musica strolling towards them.

"Oi, you two. Dinner's been ready for about ten minutes; let's eat already," he folded his arms, fully expecting them to spring into action.

Instead, Haru glanced at Elie and grinned, and she—finally having understood the Rave Master's reasons for persisting—smirked in return, "Sorry, Musica. Go on and eat without us."

"What? You must be hungry; neither of you have eaten since breakfast."

Elie turned to smile at him while Haru went back to his puzzle, "Haru's got something to prove, and I want to be with him when he triumphs." And with that, she turned her back on the silver-claimer to lean into whatever Haru had in his hands. Musica huffed and turned around, going back into the airship, leaving the two friends sitting on the deck as the sun set in front of them.


A/N: Ahh, the symbolism.Anyway, reviews are much appreciated. Hope you enjoyed :D