Just a one shot with Naussicca and Asbel, a sort of contemplative look at their future together, set after the movie. Again, watched the movie and didn't read the book, I know. For shame, right? Anyways, point is, if any of this contradicts that story line, I apologize. I hope you like the story anyways, and it doesn't throw you off too badly. Anyways, please, enjoy.

"Hey! Naussicca!" The princess smiled at the sight of her friend calling her from the hill. These days it was difficult to hold onto good friends, friends who just listened without telling her what to do and how to do it, so she held close to the few she had, including Asbel.

"Asbel! What are you doing out here?" she asked, knowing usually he was down near the bottom edge of the valley, looking after the newly planted trees.

"Waiting for you," he answered truthfully with a wide smile, "Knew you'd do you're best to skip that all important meeting today." Naussiccaa laughed.

"You saw through that, did you?"

"That's what you always say when you're taking the day off," he commented without hesitation, then grabbed her hand and began pulling her along. "Come on, we need to talk."

Naussicca followed the prince with a laugh. Asbel always knew how to cheer her up it seemed. Make faces from across the audience chamber, show her the beautiful new trees, leave her notes in her room... still couldn't figure out how he pulled that one off, but one of these days...

Again, they were in the newly planted forest. They always came here to speak it seemed, mostly because it was the most private, and the most beautiful.

"So," she said as he stopped long enough for them to breathe, "What's going on?"

"It's my people," he said openly. Naussicca became puzzled. Asbel hardly called them that anymore, even though he techniquly still was thier prince, and beside wich, his people seemed perfectly happy, so what could be the problem?

"What's wrong?" she asked in concern, causing Asbel to wave his hands frantically.

"Oh its nothing too important!" he assured her. "They love it here, and they especially love you, but the thing is..." he scratched his head nervously, while Naussicca patiently waited. His people were her responsibility now, and any problems they had would be her problems too. She'd make sure of that.

"It's just," he said sighing, "No matter how many times I remind them that Pajite is gone, or that we belong here now, in your kingdom, they keep looking to me to rule them. They don't even look to Mother anymore. Just me. They keep insisting on calling me Prince, and holding meetings, and asking my permission to do stuff, and..." Naussicca gave a hearty laugh. Asbel turned to her in confusion.

"That's what you're worried about?" she asked, laughing so hard she could barely stand up straight. "Asbel..."


"You are a prince. You just need to learn to accept that."

"Correction," he said, finger in the air, "I was a prince. Now, I'm a farmer," he said, guestureing to the forest around him. Naussicca put her hands on her hips.

"Are you upset because you don't think you are a prince, or because you don't want to be a prince?" she asked him in a scolding manner.

"What I want," he said in all seriousness, "Is what's best for them. Naussicca," he grasped one of her hands in both of his own, "My people are trying to make two rulers for this Valley, and all it's going to cause is trouble. You're a much better ruler then I could ever be, and it's time they accepted that."

Naussicca sighed. "Asbel, how long have your people looked to you as a ruler?" she asked.

"Since Father died."

"And they're going to continue, even if it's just an honorary title," she informed him. "You give them hope Asbel. Besides," she added, "Your title isn't honorary. According to the treaty, your people are still their own sovereign nation."

"Don't remind me," Asbel groaned. "Every time I try to bring this up with them, out comes the treaty, out comes the long winded mumbo jumbo, out comes the explanations and the scolding... it's not like they haven't melded right in anyways, why do we need to be a sovereign nation?" he complained.

"Because you have a proud people," she said, hoping to cheer him up, but haveing the oppisite effect.

"Again, don't remind me," he grumbled. Naussicca sighed.

"Well, if it's going to be that much of a problem," she said in a practical manner, "Maybe I should listen to my advisers and let them poison you." Asbel's eyes bugged out of his head in shock at this statement, and all Naussicca could do was laugh.

"I'm kidding!" she reassured him, chuckling all the way, "I wanted to throw them all out the palace windows when they suggested that."

"So..." he said trying to catch up, "They actually suggested poisoning me?"

"Oh they weren't serious about it," she told him, "but as father said, when faced with a problem you must look at all the options, even the ones you'll never take, just to know they're there. There was a very long meeting when we discussed how best to help your people settle in." Asbel looked both stunned and relieved, and Naussicca remembered something else. She smiled mischievously.

"You know what else they suggested?"

"What?" he asked, a bit hesitantly.

"Well there wouldn't be a problem if their ruler and our ruler ruled together, would there?"


"Oh," she said offhandedly, "they wanted us to get married, that's all." Asbel's eyes widened a bit.

"Seriously?" he asked in a slightly hushed voice. Naussicca didn't seem to notice.

"Of course I told them I'd never marry for that." Asbel almost visibly flinched, then quickly attempted to look perfectly calm about the matter.

"Oh?" he squeaked, cleared his voice, and tried again. "Oh? Why- why is that?"

"If I'm going to marry, it's going to be because I want to get married," she said matter of factly, "Can you actually see me getting married because someone else wants me to?" she said, laughter in her eyes. Asbel smiled and shook his head.

"No, I can't."

"Exactly." Asbel look thoughtful for a moment, then spoke again.

"So," he said, trying to make sure the matter was cleared up, "We're not getting married anytime soon then."

"I didn't say that." Naussicca climbed up on a low stone wall, paying little attention to Asbel as he stammered and stuttered.

"But you said..."

"I said I'd get married if I wanted to get married to someone," she clarified. "You could always try to convince me," she added ambialy as she started walking away across the top of the wall, "I wouldn't mind."

Asbel stood there, blinking, as Naussica walked away, her arms out for balance, humming to herself. His brain scrambled as he tried to figure out what she'd just said. Did she just suggest...? He shook his head to clear it of clouded and confused thoughts, and allowed a large smile to cover his face.

"Hey Naussicca!" he called "Wait up!" As he sprinted to catch up, she laughed at him.

"Done being all thoughtful and confused over there?" she asked.

"Oh so that's what today is," he said grinning, "Pick on poor Prince Asbel day."

"Prince Asbel?" she asked, "I thought you said you were a farmer." He shrugged.

"I guess I can be both for a while," he said, "Won't hurt me none." He frowned.

"You know," he added, "If I start actually acting like a Prince, my people are bound to find more things for me to do," he told her, "I might not get to see you as much."

"Just be sure to schedule your all important meetings at the same time as mine," she advised, winking, "I'm sure it will turn out alright."

Asbel smiled as he watched Naussicca turn in a circle up on her wall, her face glowing, turned up towards the sky. I'm sure it will.

Aaaawwwww.... so sweet! I mean, it's not just me, that is totally sweet, am I right? I hope I haven't lost my ability to sense sweetness... anyways... Like I said, just a peek into what their future could be, take it as romance or don't, up to you. Personally, I kinda like the idea of those two getting together. Of course I adore Asbel, but I think that mostly has to do with his english voice (Shia Lebeuf rocks!) but whatever.

Please, tell me what you thought if you can spare the time. I do hope you liked it, and as always, please excuse any spelling mistakes you should find. I triple check these things, but seriously, I got an award from my graduating class for being the worst spelling smart person they know. No joke.