I'm bored. There's no reviews on my Jumbled Character fic T-T So I thought I might cheer myself up with a semi-fluffy oneshot with a really odd pairing that I doubt anyone else will understand. This takes place right after Wendell OOPS SPOILER!! Steiner and Ayano have a little chat. Enjoy?
Steiner sighed heavily as he gazed down at his crystal arm. Roland and Rina's voices still echoed in his head, urging him to take off the Runic Engine. Why didn't he listen? It's not like they wanted him to show weakness by taking off the Runic Engine, but he just couldn't seem to convince himself that they were just worried about him. He felt a twang of guilt as he remembered his sister's words when he met the group on Calcus Highway earlier.
"You've… changed…" was all Rina said. "You used to be really nice…"
"Power!" Steiner exclaimed angrily. "Everything takes power! Without it, you can't do anything!"
"Brother… you've lost yourself in your own hunger for power…"
"I don't think any of us want you to help us now."
Not to mention, that silver, know-it-all Witch. What was she talking about anyway? "Lapis Corrosion"? …did that happen to his squad? Is that why they all turned into crystal? …is that why his arm was crystal now? What was that Witch's name again? Aya… Ayame? Something like that. Whoever she was, she knew what was happening… before his arm even turned into crystal.
"Ugh…" Steiner groaned. His Runic Engine burned and his whole body felt light. Not to mention, the aches and pains he had recently acquired from fighting the motley group. Rasche was right, Rina had gotten good. The last arrow she fired into him hurt like hell. The silver Witch walked up to him slowly and scanned his features. She sighed and her facial expression was… sympathetic?
"He's succumbing to the Lapis Corrosion," she said softly. A hint of a smile flickered across her pale, unblemished face. "He must have been strong to resist it for this long." What was with this girl anyway?
Steiner clenched his uninjured fist in rage. If anyone was to blame for what happened to him, it was Roland. If he just hadn't stolen his Runic Engine before… Practically his entire squad and his arm were crystallized. Why wasn't Roland crystallizing?!?! He sighed as the hard truth hit him. Master Matthias. Roland was just the luckiest guy in Carnava. He could efficiently use the Runic Engine without turning into crystal. And Steiner? That weird Witch said he was strong for "resisting" Lapis Corrosion. Yes, he was strong, but why was he turning into crystal in the first place?! Roland was a heartthrob, no doubt. He had two Witches fighting for his affections, for crying out loud! And all Steiner had was one or two fangirls down at the Lapis Factory… Roland had kissed or been kissed by six different women. Steiner had never kissed anyone or been kissed once. I'm over thinking this, Steiner told himself. Why should I be jealous of someone four years younger than me? That's depressing… And why am I paying so much attention to that Witch who probably got her powers by swallowing an Anti-Lapis whole? This was one thing that bugged him constantly. He would always get a tingly feeling in his gut whenever he was around that silver Witch. What the hell was wrong with him?! To make matters worse, the silver Witch sat down next to him and the tingly feeling returned. "Hi," was all she said. "I'm Ayano." So that's her name… She stuck her hand out. Steiner wordlessly stared down at his crystallized arm and she quickly changed hands, blushing. "Listen… we got off to a rough start, and… I was just wondering… hoping, actually… that we could put the past behind us and move on." She smiled. Why was the tingly feeling getting worse?! "It's Steiner, right?" He grabbed her hand and shook it. It was soft… wait… why was he thinking these weird things?!
"Yeah…" Ayano tilted her head to the side and frowned in confusion.
"You ok? You look a little… depressed…" No. There's no way I'm telling her anything.
"It's Roland." Ok, I did not just admit my jealousy to her. He paused, and she motioned for him to continue. Who was she anyway, his therapist? "He's so lucky. He can efficiently use the Runic Engine and not crystallize." He expected her to say something like, "It's your own fault," but she never did. She just smiled sympathetically and nodded. "And he's got two Witches fighting for his affections… and…"
"He's kissed or been kissed by six different women?" Ayano guessed.
"Yeah… How do you—"
"I've been alive for four thousand years. Give me some credit." The fact that she was over four thousand years old was a bit odd and slightly unnerving, but he didn't harp on it. "You're jealous, aren't you?"
"Me? Jealous of Roland? Why would I be—"
"If you deny it, you'll only feel worse." He couldn't argue with that. Damn, this woman was good. "You're Rina's brother, right?" He nodded, and she smiled. "She's a sweet girl. She cares a lot for you. You really shouldn't be so reckless. Why don't you listen to her and take off the Runic Engine?"
"Because, if I do, then—"
"You're afraid Roland will beat you? I've heard Dia's crush—"
"The tall redhead." Steiner couldn't help but smirk. Dia and Rasche? "Anyway, he said he was stronger than Roland and that you were stronger than him… doesn't that technically make you stronger than Roland?"
"I… I guess…"
"As for being kissed by six Witches… well… that's his job. That's how a Master and a Witch are supposed to Unite." Steiner mumbled something incoherent, and they were left in silence for a few brief minutes. Then Ayano's face turned bright red. "Um… Steiner… I do know one Witch Roland never kissed…"
"There's hundreds in training. I doubt they'd put their training on hold to kiss him anyway."
"No… I mean… an Elemental Witch…" She played with her fingers nervously.
"I thought there were only six Elemental Witches."
"There's one more."
"Who?" Ayano leaned in and planted a light kiss on his lips. Ayano's face was flushed crimson as she pulled away.
"I… I have to go!" And she stood up and ran off. Steiner involuntarily brought his hand up to his mouth. Did that really just happen? Then…
"Brother?" Steiner jumped in surprise.
"Rina! What are you doing?! Don't scare me like that!"
"I have to go soon. Take it easy, ok?"
"Yeah… ok…" She frowned in confusion and tilted her head to the side.
"Why is your face all red? Are you ok?" Crap.
"Um… y-yeah… I'm fine… I just… yeah…"
"What's going on?" He never got to answer, for he heard a hoot of laughter. Rasche ran up to the siblings, holding a cognograph.
"Rina!" he yelled in between laughs. "You've got to see this!" He then turned his attention to Steiner. "Steiner, I never knew you had it in you!"
"What are you…" he grabbed the picture from Rasche and his face flushed a deeper shade of crimson. In the cognograph was him and Ayano, their lips locked. Steiner's eyes narrowed into slits. Kicking Roland's ass could wait. First things first…
"Rasche I'm going to kill you!!"
I know Steiner/Ayano is a really weird pairing that not many people can picture. But… I don't really know where I got the inspiration for this… If you had the time to read this, READ THE JUMBLED CHARACTER STORY TOO!! But first things first, PLEASE REVIEW!!