Author's Notes: Just a short drabble I wrote for aoi_no_tenshi as part of my drabble meme thing. Nothing spectactular -- and even though it's supposed to be Bard/Finnian, it's still somehow more about Sebastian and Ciel. LMAO. *too dedicated to her OTP*

Some of you may be reading my multi-chaptered Kuroshitsuji story 'But a Humble Servant'. This oneshot is compliant with the canon for this story; a side-story so to speak.

And yes, I will write the 3rd chapter. ;


Fool's Suspicion

A Kuroshitsuji Oneshot


"Have you noticed?"

"What?"

"You know. The young master and Mr. Sebastian." Finnian bit his lower lip and shifted his weight from one foot to the other. "You know."

Bard just regarded him with a skeptical smirk on his lips. "What are you talking about, Finny?"

Finnian shook his head to himself, then drew his eyes to the floor. Bard saw some of the snowflakes gather in his eyelashes, spilling crystal water across his eyelids.

"Yeah – they're like..." Finnian scratched the back of his head, then let his arm drop in exasperation. "Ah, I don't know. But for a few months now, it seems like there's just something about them that's..." he raised his eyes to meet Bard's, and flinched only slightly as the full weight of the chef's eyes crashed into his. "D-different."

A smirk split Bard's face, and before Finnian got the chance to react, he had already thrown his arm around the smaller boy's shoulders, pulling him against his chest.

"Wha – Bard!" Finnian shrieked and attempted to claw himself free from Bard's grasp, but the cook only laughed and ruffled Finnian's hair.

When Finnian finally managed to rip Bard's hands off of him, he jumped a few steps back, regarding Bard with the first forebodings of a rare scowl settled on his features. "Stop that, Bard. I'm serious."

A loose smile hung on Bard's lips. "Okay, Finny. Humor me." He leaned forward just slightly, making Finnian take another step back with a displeased expression on his face. "Tell me what exactly it is that has made you come to this conclusion then."

Finnian licked his lips, drawing his eyes to the ground. The snow cracked and popped underneath the soles of his boots. "Well, for one, it used to be Sebastian who went outside to greet Lady Elizabeth. And now, obviously," he made a sweeping gesture with his hand, "it's us."

Bard nodded.

"It seems like the young master is trying to, you know." Finnian tilted his head a little. "Keep Mr. Sebastian close at all times or something. And he only started doing that a few months ago."

"Well, they are master and servant. It's not surprising they would have a very close relationship."

"Yeah, sure. You're right, it's just – it's just that sometimes the young master seems to hold a personal... grudge or something against him. And the young master isn't the only one who's changed." Finnian threw his gaze around the area where they were waiting for the arrival of Elizabeth's carriage. His blue eyes returned to Bard's face, voice low and rushed like a school girl's whispering secrets to another. "Mr. Sebastian, too."

By now, the mischievous expression on Bard's face had slipped. Hand at the back of his neck and eyes drawn to the sky, he was contemplating what Finnian was telling him. "I haven't noticed any chances in him, really. I mean, he's... scarily perfect like always."

Finnian nodded. "Yeah, but..." He shrugged. "I dunno. He seems more..." Finnian trailed off, struggling for the right word. "...Vicious, almost."

That made Bard give a snort. "Vicious?"

Finnian shook his head. "I know it's not the best word, but... sometimes, just – just sometimes, I-" He met Bard's eyes and drew them to the ground immediately. Bard saw that a gentle dusting of pink had started to sprinkle itself all over his cheeks and the bridge of his nose.

"What?"

Finnian swallowed. "I-I don't know. It just seems like they have.... tension. Or something like it, at least." Finnian fidgeted on the spot, talking to the ground. "Sometimes Mr. Sebastian throws the young master looks that - that I would probably throw at one of his cakes."

"Cakes?"

Finnian nodded. Then his eyes widened. "You must promise you won't tell anyone about this! Not even Maylene!" A beat. "Wait, especially not her."

"Do I look like a snobby girl?"

Finnian looked him up and down. "Well, no."

Bard smirked. "Your secret's safe with me."

"Good." Finnian took a deep breath, giving Bard a pensive sideways glance. "Because what I've said so far isn't the worst of it."

"What is the worst of it?"

His voice was barely above a whisper. "The young master does it, too. Look at Sebastian that way, I mean."

Bard scratched his ear thoughtfully. "So... so what are you suggesting, precisely?"

When their eyes met, Finnian flinched. Heat pulsed into his cheeks and he averted his eyes."N-nothing. What would I be suggesting?"

"Well, it's only natural, I suppose. They spend a lot of time together. Alone. In, uh. The young master's... locked... office."

"And his bedroom."

"And the bathroom."

"Yeah."

"Yeah." Bard's fingers froze over his ear. "Oh. Oh!"

Finnian bit his lower lip.

"You can't be serious."

"I said I wasn't suggesting anything! What are you talking about?"

Bard let his arm drop to his side. "Right. There's nothing. It's nothing."

A long stretch of silence. The snowflakes continued to fall, gathering as little heaps on the ground that glittered like diamonds where the sunlight glinted them off. They both hugged themselves and kept their eyes stubbornly trained forward. Neither was wearing a watch, but for some reason it still seemed like Finnian could hear the obtrusive 'tick-tack' sound of one reverberating through the chilly winter air.

Bard licked his lips."Do you think they -"

Finnian flinched. "Oh, God. No. Never."

Bard's body visibly relaxed. "Right, no, right? It can't be. Not between -" he sent Finnian a look, "men and- and... coworkers to boot."

Finnian nodded, cheeks coloring. "Unacceptable."

"Right. No way."

"Yeah. No way. How silly of me." Upon meeting Bard's eyes, he drew his face to the side. His voice was almost swallowed by the snow when he said, "Forgot I ever said that."

Bard threw up his hands. "Forgotten."

"Good." Finnian shoved his hands into his pockets and squinted into the snow.

"Good." Bard became very interested in the snow-covered ground.

In Finnian's life, he had experienced many an uncomfortable silence.

But this one had to top them all.