Slightly festive one-shot piece of fluff set after the first game featuring most of the characters but mainly focusing on Lloyd, Genis and Colette. Hints of Colloyd.
(I've assumed that the characters wouldn't celebrate Christmas but that it seemed reasonable that there would be a winter festival of some sort).
Dedication: for Manna/Kitten Kisses. I really hope that you enjoy this and that it makes you smile. Thank you for giving me such a fun prompt!
Disclaimer: I don't own Tales of Symphonia.
Lloyd had to admit that Colette's idea to spend the first winter festival after the world reunification journey together as a reunion had been a good one. The group of heroes had managed to find a quiet inn in a small town which, as there weren't any other guests staying there, they had pretty much taken over. The innkeeper had seemed thrilled to find out that he was going to get such a large booking at a time when that town didn't normally get that many visitors, especially when they'd told him that they'd cook for themselves.
Lloyd couldn't help but wonder if the poor man would still be quite as pleased if he saw the current state of the kitchen, however. While he'd not actually looked in on Regal and Raine for a while the sounds of small explosions and the distinct burnt smell that was coming from the kitchen told him that Regal's attempts to teach Raine to cook something edible weren't going very well.
Zelos' attempts to beat Presea at a card game were equally as unsuccessful if his whining and Sheena's gleeful giggling were an indication of how the game was going. Zelos was complaining that Sheena, being good with cards, must have taught Presea to cheat. Sheena was chuckling and suggesting that maybe it was beginner's luck. Presea just sat at the table and continued to win.
The space by the fireplace where Lloyd was currently sat was a bit quieter. He was, along with Genis and Colette, settled against Noishe's back. He was carving a little ornament while Colette contentedly braided brightly coloured threads together to make bracelets, the sort Lloyd remembered her making when they were younger, and Genis was reading a book.
As well as reading Lloyd was quite convinced that Genis was plotting something. He wasn't sure quite what it was that his friend was plotting but he was certain that he was up to something. He had been wearing an expression that Lloyd recognised from their schooldays that morning, one that meant that Genis was planning to play a trick or a joke on them. The mage had also snuck off with a lot of the biscuits that Colette had made earlier.
"OK Genis, what is it? What are you up to?" Lloyd asked.
"I'm not up to anything, I'm just reading my book, enjoying some quiet time," Genis said, pulling his 'who? Me? But I'm so innocent' face.
"Coleeeeeette," Lloyd whined, resorting to a tactic he'd used back when they were still in school.
The young woman turned to look at Genis, tipping her head to one side as a serious but still gentle expression formed on her face.
"Are you plotting something Genis?" she asked, her tone similar to that of a mother talking to a child who might have done something naughty.
"No, I'm not plotting anything nasty at all," he shook his head.
"There you go Lloyd. Maybe he's planning a secret surprise present or something and doesn't want to spoil the surprise," Colette said as she smiled, turning her attention back to her bracelets.
Although Colette seemed to think that nothing was amiss Lloyd remained unconvinced. He continued to watch Genis and, having been unable to spot any clues, he decided to talk to his friend again once they were settled back by the fire after dinner.
"OK Genis, if you're not plotting anything why did you need so many biscuits?" he asked.
"Oh, that, I was just teaching Noishe a new trick, you know how he likes biscuits as treats if he gets a trick right," Genis smiled. It was a smile that Lloyd didn't entirely trust.
"You taught the mutt a new trick?" Zelos asked.
"Yeap, you want to see it?" Genis asked, the smile that Lloyd found so suspicious still on his face.
Lloyd was about to say that perhaps Genis would like to tell them what the trick was before he got Noishe to do it but Sheena spoke first, telling Genis that of course they'd like to see the trick.
"OK Noishe, plant time," Genis said, the smile on his face getting wider as he tried to smother a giggle.
"Plant time?" Lloyd asked, his confusion evident in his voice.
Noishe moved to delicately pick up something he'd been hiding under his front paw between his teeth then he sat up, placing himself between Lloyd and Colette, his tail wagging happily.
"Is that…?" Lloyd started to ask as he got a closer look at what Noishe was holding.
"Mistletoe, that's right," Genis said, his tone of voice indicating that he found the situation very amusing.
"Do you guys have that custom where two people who are beneath a piece of mistletoe…" Zelos started.
"Have to kiss, yes," Genis finished, somehow just managing not to giggle.
Both Lloyd and Colette were blushing.
"Well, go on, it is tradition after all," Zelos, who was clearly as amused as Genis was, encouraged them.
Slowly, shyly, they moved forward until their lips met for a brief moment. Then they moved apart again, both of them blushing even brighter than before.
"Whoa, bud, on the lips!" Zelos cheered, whistling at them.
"Shut up Zelos!" Lloyd mumbled, more embarrassed than cross.
As everyone settled back down to what they had been doing before Lloyd found himself thinking that, in a way, Colette had been right. While he would have very much preferred for it to not have happened in front of absolutely everyone getting a kiss from Colette was a nice surprise present. One he had enjoyed very much in fact, even if it had only lasted for a short moment. He smiled and decided that, when they had some more privacy, he'd have to get Noishe to do that trick again some time.