AN: This was written as a sequel to Adelbert's Proposal. I suggest you read that, before this, as this might not make sense without it. Like Adelbert's Proposal, it will be extremely cheesy. But I wrote this at work, when I was suddenly struck by inspiration and had to write it on the back of coupons. I ended up memorizing what I wrote, then ripping it up, so that none of my co-workers would find and read it.

~That useless bit of information brought to you by Moony~

Disclaimer: Although I own a copy of Final Fantasy IX for playstation, and numerous pieces of FFIX merchandise, I don't really OWN it, like Squaresoft does. I don't own Squaresoft, either. Just thought I should let you know.

Beatrix's Answer

By Mippin Moony (read Fellowship of the Intimate Apparel)

Beatrix stared, speechless, as the moon shone down upon them, reflecting off his armor and basking him in a radiant, pure light. She studied her lover for several solid moments, before what he'd said finally sunk in. It happened slowly, as if the details were hung above her head in a cloth, and as the rag was rung out, the events seeped into her head, and she put it together drip by drip before she finally understood what was going on.

Adelbert Steiner, the world's most arrogant, yet loyal captain, had just proposed to her.

As it finally struck her, all the gears in her body seemed to start up at once, where they'd been frozen a moment before. Her chest thumped at full speed, her stomach churned and seemed to want more than anything to propel it's contents upwards, and the wheels in her head spun helplessly around, making it difficult for her to make sense of her surroundings. She struggled to regain her composure, and vaguely noted a slight breeze that went by, ruffling her hair and her clothing. It chilled her to the bone, making her shiver suddenly.

As if by command, her body instantly returned to it's normally composed state, and the breeze, just as instantly, came to a halt. The fresh air resting on her shoulders, she recovered, but continued to stare dumbly at Adelbert while she pondered over the situation.

To say that Adelbert's proposal was unexpected would be the same thing as saying that he would live forever: a complete lie. She'd been betting on it for months, to speak the truth, and had even met him that night expecting to return his fiancé. It was the manner in which he'd gone about it that stunned her into complete silence. He'd been so bold and loving, she had no clue how she should answer him so that it did his action justice.

One of the reasons General Beatrix loved Captain Steiner so much was that he was a bumbler. She loved, too, how she was the calm reason in their relationship. The guiding hand, and comforting embrace. She adored how, while he flustered, she could help him with grace, dignity, and - if called for - a slight flourish. She'd believed that for Adelbert to make a mistake, and for her to love him for it all the same. . . it was as natural as the dawn breaking the night.

It was for those reasons that she was at such a loss, and why she allowed a tortured Adelbert to wait as she thought up a way for her to regain her position as the cool and dazzling Beatrix she knew he saw.

Her eyes nervously scanned his face, looking for any answers that might suddenly appear to her. Her efforts were fruitless, and her gaze traveled downward in search of more aid. It was only when she'd reached his waist that she'd found it, in the form of cold steel.

A sly grin spread across her face as she reached down to the hilt at her own hip, slowly - and confidently - drawing her blade.

"Draw your sword." She commanded, her voice serious, but the glint in her eye giving away her game. "My answer depends on your victory."

She raised an eyebrow, taking a step back, her sword held in the air as bait which she knew Adelbert would take. She waited, calmly, for him to unsheathe his own, and his obvious hesitation when he finally did made it difficult for her to keep a straight face. Finally, he swung his blade upwards in a quick and subtle arc, moving to knock aside her weapon, just as she'd wanted him to.

A smile quirked at the corner of her lips as she lowered her sword. She watched as his body kept moving, carried by the momentum of his small, but powerful, swing. Waiting until he was at the end of his twirl, trying to regain his balance, she whirled around, knocking him down as the dull side of her sword clanked noisily against the armor at the small of his back. He fell, face first, to the ground, and she didn't hesitate before kicking his glaive out of his reach.

He slowly rolled onto his back, grunting as he did so, and looked up at her. She quickly pointed her sword at his throat, a triumphant expression gracing her face. She opened her mouth to speak, but, like his proposal, his defeat had taken a while to sink in. It had finally done so, and the first thing she noticed, now, was the look of utter despair on Adelbert's face. It appeared as if, though she had been careful not to hurt him in their duel, his heart had been broken, and she felt hers threaten to do the same. He had TRULY believed that she would reject him if he lost the duel.

"Beatrix." He croaked. It sounded as if he was trying not to cry.

She pushed aside the thought of his pain when she remembered the joy that would replace it momentarily, and regained her confident expression, hoping he didn't believe she was mocking him.

"The answer, of course. . ." she looked at him disapprovingly, "Is yes."

As she said this, she lowered and sheathed her weapon, and watched him with humor in her eyes. She was reminded of a Lindblum Flounder she'd once tasted, as Adelbert's eyes widened, and his lips moved, mouthing silent words.

"What?" he finally managed.

"I accept. I will be your wife." She reached down to help him up. "Now get up, you great oaf. You look like a fish, like that. Imagine if the Knights of Pluto found you that way."

He slowly reached up to take her hand, and rose to his feet, replacing his sword at his waist when she'd handed it to him.

"But, you said--"

"Oh, honestly." She interrupted, "You thought I'd say no if you lost?"

She looked into his eyes, reaching up to cup his face in her hands.

"Adelbert. . ." Her eyes grew soft as she regarded him, and she smiled softly.

"I love you."

She'd embraced him, then. First lowering his face to her own, before wrapping her arms around his neck, her lips continuing to smile against his as his arms found their way to her waist.

When they'd pulled apart, he spoke.

"But what would you have done if I won?"

She cocked her head to the side, then shook her head.

"You were fighting against ME, Adelbert. Me! How could you have possibly won?"

He opened his mouth to argue, but decided against it. He'd got what he wanted. Beatrix's answer.

And he was quite satisfied with it.


Well, how was that? Cheesy enough? Romantic enough? It was weird to write, but I'm not too disappointed with the results. Please, reviewers, be brutal. After something as mushy as that, I think I deserve it. But I'll be happy if you senseless romantics (Did I say senseless? I meant hopeless.) are satisfied with it.

^_^ Happy Friday.


PS: I was originally going to do a much longer duel, but I decided it would be WAY more realistic if Beatrix just whooped his ass. And God said "All shalt ph33r B347r!x, for she is a mighty bad ass."