A/N: Well. This turned out much longer than originally intended. And it ended up more Ven/Aqua-ish than I originally intended. It's not really essentially V/A, but I guess it's there. It was meant to just sort of be a funny piece featuring the BBS trio. (Well, originally it was featuring Ven and Aqua, but then Terra snuck in and demanded a bigger role. And he also ended up a bit more pervish than I intended.) So there's some sort of (mostly one-sided, I guess) V/A if you want to see it that way, but mostly I like writing the trio as a trio of friends who are close enough to almost be siblings. That's how they seem to me in the game. (Unlike, say, SKR, where there's the obvious SK, and the possible love triangle.) This is basically SPOILER-FREE. With the slight reference to Ven's memory loss--sorry for that tiny spoiler. He's got some memory loss. Not a huge spoiler. This is also basically pre-BBS. I can't remember where this idea originated from. Probably an episode of Desperate Housewives. That show inspires a lot of ideas. Rated for safety. Nothing that bad. I don't own anything. Nope. Nothing. Not even the money to buy BBS when it finally comes out.
Aqua's morning routine never changed. Her alarm would chime at precisely 6:50am, and she would pound the 'snooze' button no more than twice. At 7:20am, she would scurry downstairs in her bathrobe to have her pre-breakfast before anyone else could wake up to see her messy bed-head and make-up-less face. She called it pre-breakfast because proper-breakfast wasn't until 9:00am with Eraqus, Terra, and Ventus. However, Aqua couldn't go for two hours in the morning without anything in her stomach, so she would always sneak downstairs for a simple bowl of fruit before continuing with her morning routine.
At 7:40am, she would take her morning shower. Her shower was the only part of her routine that was allowed to take as long as she liked. Sometimes, the mind (and the aching body) just needed to stand under the hot water for half an hour. And as long as she was out by 8:30, there was still plenty of time for everything else.
After getting out of the shower, she would dry her hair, do her make-up (she didn't need much; the exercise from training every day did wonders for her complexion, but when one has blue eyelashes, mascara is a must), get dressed, and then proceed back downstairs to have proper-breakfast with Eraqus and the boys.
Today had been no different. Today's shower hadn't been that long (alright, 35 minutes; but her shoulder had been hurting), her hair was refusing to frizz as she dried it, and she had eaten just enough at pre-breakfast to keep her from feeling weak, but not so much that she wound't be hungry for proper-breakfast. All in all, the day was looking promising.
She stepped back from the mirror and surveyed her appearance. Hair? Tamed. Teeth? Clean. Eyelashes? Ebony, and not smudging. Good. She let the towel that was currently wrapped around her body fall to the floor so she could begin getting dressed. However, she didn't get very far.
"Where is it? Didn't I grab one?" She carefully dug through the pile of clothes sitting on top of the hamper (where she placed her clean set of clothes everyday), then completely unfolded every item just to make sure. No luck. No bra. Aqua sighed. She'd just have to go back into her room and get one, then.
It wasn't as if she had to travel very far; it was an en-suite bathroom, after all. (There were certain perks that came with being Eraqus's first apprentice; first choice of rooms being one of them. Ven and Terra didn't exactly have to share a bathroom, since there were multiple bathrooms, but they sure did start daily wars over the closest one.) Still, she disliked the thought of stepping out into her open room (which would no doubt feel much colder compared to the warm, steamy bathroom) until she was fully clothed. She didn't quite know why, but for some reason she just felt a bit embarrassed at the prospect of streaking, even if it was just through her own bedroom. Well, half-streaking. She had on her panties, at least. Still. Couldn't be helped. She sighed and opened the bathroom door.
Ventus was not a morning person. He had never been a morning person, (at least, not in the time he could actually remember), and he doubted he ever really would be. He saw no legitimate reason to be awake before the sun, or why any sane human being would want anything less than ten hours of sleep.
But Aqua was a morning person. And even through his sleepy haze, he noticed the look of bemusement that filled her bright eyes as she surveyed his messy hair and half-lidded eyes every morning when he stumbled in ten minutes late for breakfast. And for reasons he doesn't quite understand yet, he doesn't want her to give him that look anymore. So today, he was going to be an early bird, and have her be impressed by him. ("You? Up early? Hah! I'll believe it when I see it!" "Shut up, Terra!")
It was 8:00am, and Ven was sitting on his bed, staring at the clock, trying to figure out why, exactly, he wanted so badly for Aqua to be impressed with him. He didn't care quite so much for Terra to be impressed with him. (Well, he did, but not in the same ways. He wanted Terra to see that he could be just as strong as he was, but Ven wanted Aqua to be proud of him.)
He knew Aqua awoke a good two hours before the rest of them, but as he sat, bleary-eyed on his bed and stared at the clock, he couldn't help but wonder why. What did she fill those two hours up with? There was no training to be done in the early hours of the day. Why not fill those hours with that most wonderful, delightful pastime of sleep?
Ventus was starting to think that impressing Aqua wasn't worth the boredom.
Maybe she spent her early mornings meditating? To help with her magic? Maybe he could join her. Or maybe he could just hang out with her. Or…something. Maybe he could just pop in, say good morning, let her see he could do the whole early-bird thing, then go back to sleep until breakfast.
Oh yes. Door number three sounded heavenly. Everybody wins.
He tip-toed through the hallways towards Aqua's room. He had no idea what time Master Eraqus woke up, but he didn't fancy dealing with the Master's wrath should he accidentally wake him from his much-needed sleep. (Or at least he assumed it was much-needed, considering how many training days ended with Master Eraqus pinching the bridge of his nose as he told Ven, "No, it's fine. You'll get it. We'll just…try again…" sigh, "tomorrow.")
He paused outside of her door. Oh, no, what was he going to say? Just 'good morning'? Would it seem weird to her that he just randomly decided to pop in? He should have some kind of excuse ready, just in case.
Magic. She could do magic. And he was having trouble with his Gravira spell. Okay.
Ventus rapped on her door. No response. She was in there, wasn't she? He rapped again. Still no response. Maybe she wasn't in there. Couldn't hurt to check, could it? He tried her doorknob to find that it was unlocked. Perfect.
He turned the knob all the way and pushed on the wooden door, stepping into Aqua's neat room just as she stepped through her bathroom door.
Ven froze, his eyes growing to the size of saucers as they hit Aqua's half-naked body. Aqua screamed, her arms leaping up to cover her exposed breasts. "VEN!" she shrieked, staring at him. He just stood there, completely immobilized with shock for a moment before the part of Ven's brain where his manners were located finally got through the shocked barrier around the central processor and shouted at him to stop looking, you idiot! Ven's body jolted into gear with the realization and he spun around to look back out her door, his eyes still wide.
"I'm sorry!" He choked out, the image of Aqua's bare body burned into his brain. "I-I-I d-didn't mean t-t-t-to y-you-you know, uh-uh-um, I j-j-uh-ust—I'm s-s-sorry!"
"WHAT WERE YOU DOING IN HERE TO BEGIN WITH?!" Ven gulped. He'd never heard Aqua sound that mad, or startled, or her voice so high-pitched. He couldn't blame her. If someone walked in on him naked, he'd be pretty ticked off too.
"I-I-I was, I was, I was just, just uh-um, g-g-gonna say g-g-g-good morning!" He heard a dresser drawer open behind him, and his brain automatically generated an image of her putting on a bra. Ven's faced turned an even deeper scarlet than it already was. Why was his brain showing him these images?! "I d-d-di-didn't know you-you-you'd b-be n-n-na--"
"NAKED?!" Aqua shrieked from behind him.
"I'm sorry!" Ven shouted again, blushing deeper as his voice jumped four octaves. He couldn't get the image of Aqua's bare chest out of his brain.
"Ven?" Aqua's voice grated out from behind him, emanating a forced patience. "WHAT are you still doing in here?"
Ven gulped again. "I-I-I don't know."
"Ven," she sounded angrier, "GET OUT!"
"What?" Ven didn't have the chance to try and move his legs. He heard the chime of Aqua's keyblade materializing and the next thing he knew a mini-tornado was sweeping him out of Aqua's room and smashing him into the wall of the hallway her room was located on. When his head stopped spinning he looked back to see that Aqua's door had been slammed shut after the Aeroga spell had deposited him outside.
And still, he couldn't get that image out of his mind!
That was it, Ven decided. Nothing good ever came from getting up before the sun.
Aqua sank slowly down onto her bed, eyes still wide, mouth still gaping, and cheeks still glowing scarlet. She hadn't really meant to blow up at Ventus like that; after all, it had been an accident, but she had simply panicked. (Now there was a wonder. She couldn't remember the last time she'd panicked about anything. She was so cool and collected even in battle.)
She'd have to apologize to him later. If she could even look him in the eye, that is. And perhaps the aeroga spell was a bit much; but on the other hand he'd just been standing there, with her door wide open for all the world to walk by and see in. What if Terra had walked by? Or Master Eraqus? (Aqua shivered. She didn't even want to think about how awkward that would have made things.)
Ventus had seen her topless. Ven, little Ven had seen her topless! Well, he'd seemed fairly repulsed by the situation, and he was only fifteen, so…Aqua's head fell into her hands. What was she saying, 'only' fifteen? She'd accidentally given a teenage boy a full view of her assets. Heaven only knew what was going to come of that.
She groaned into her hands. Well, it couldn't be helped. Ventus had seen her naked. She couldn't let their friendship fall apart over this one little incident. And the boy was rather oblivious when it came to matters of the opposite sex, never having had any contact (that he could remember, at least) when anyone other than the inhabitants of their small world. Aqua wasn't even sure if he knew about the birds and the bees. He never did more than blink stupidly whenever Terra made some sort of inappropriate joke. (Didn't stop Aqua from reprimanding Terra for his crude humor in front of the younger apprentice, though.)
Aqua allowed herself a smile of amusement at the flustered reaction of her young friend. The poor boy. Well, she decided. For the sake of her friendship she was going to be the adult about it. There was no getting the elephant out of the room until one of them chose to stop ignoring it, and Ven wasn't mature enough to handle that yet.
Still. Breakfast was going to be interesting.
Breakfast, indeed, was a most interesting affair.
As soon as she walked in the room, Ven, who had been walking towards his seat, dropped his plate and it shattered all over the kitchen floor. No one chose to comment on this incident coinciding with Aqua's arrival, thankfully. However, both Eraqus and Terra wore strange looks as they noticed how Ven, whose face had decided to imitate a tomato, kept his eyes focused on his plate all through the meal; and also how Aqua's voice warbled just the tiniest bit as she asked Ven to pass the pepper.
And no one missed how relieved Ven looked that he and Aqua would not be training anywhere near each other today.
Terra raised his eyebrow as he surveyed the boy who had become like a younger brother to him. Ven's ten minute break from training had stretched into a twenty minute break, and now into a thirty minute break, and the only reason he'd gotten away with this was because Master Eraqus was in the castle library with Aqua instructing her on the theory behind a new spell.
The youngest apprentice was sitting on the ledge of a small cliff, staring absently out at the sky. Now, this was by no means abnormal behavior for the usually-spacey apprentice, but something about the way his eyes remained wide troubled Terra.
He approached his friend and sat down next to him, noting how Ven didn't even seem to notice his arrival. "Ven?"
"What?" The boy jumped, his wide eyes turning to Terra.
Terra raised an eyebrow. "Are you okay?"
"Yeah, sure, I'm great, wonderful, everything's fine." He nodded vigorously.
Terra's eyes narrowed.
Ven gulped. His head spun around, looking to the left, then the right, then to the left again, then back to Terra. "You can't tell anyone this, got it?" Terra was a bit taken aback by Ven's fidgeting, but nodded nonetheless, his curiosity having got the best of him. Ven sighed, his cheeks tinting pink, "I sort of, accidentally—mind you—well, um, this morning, saw, um, Aqua…" he gulped again, "well, basically, sort of…naked."
Terra's eyebrows threatened to disappear into his hair and he couldn't keep the laughter out of his voice as he replied, "What?"
Ven's face was full-on bright red now, and his words started to speed up. "Well, she wasn't completely naked, I mean, she had on you know, underwear, but not a, you know," his finger swung back and forth horizontally in front of his chest as he struggled to get the right word out.
"She didn't have a bra on?" Terra asked, an amused smile pulling at the corners of his mouth.
Ven nodded, his face getting even redder.
To Ven's surprise, Terra threw his head back and let forth a deep, rumbling laugh, which echoed off the mountains and resounded in Ven's scarlet ears. "It was an accident! I didn't mean to walk in on her when she was—you know!"
Terra's laughter finally died down enough for him to talk. "You mean to tell me that you got an unobstucted view of that chest?" He whistled. "Bet that was a sight to see!" Ven merely stared, amazed at his friend's crass response. Terra shrugged. "I mean, I don't mean to sound like a pervert, but," he flicked his eyebrows upward, "you gotta admit, Aqua's pretty well-endowed."
Ven stared some more. "Why are you laughing?" He finally choked out. "I saw our best friend without clothes on! It was totally awkward! And now I can't get the image out of my head!"
Terra couldn't suppress a chuckle. "Why would you want to?"
"Terra!" Ven exclaimed, amazed at the older boy's treatment of the subject. "She was humiliated, and I felt like I was violating her with my eyes!"
Terra chuckled again and placed a comforting hand on Ven's shoulder. "Alright, alright, so it's a bit of an awkward situation considering that it's Aqua, but dude, the thing is, you've seen a girl topless—a really, really, hot girl, at that! Most guys would give up a few limbs to be in your place!"
Ven blinked at him. "Why?"
Terra sighed. He'd long attributed Ven's lack of general acknowledgement of their female friend's notable curves and general oblivion when it came to matters of the opposite sex to Ven's youth and general obliviousness when it came to pretty much everything. But, really, Terra would have thought somewhere in that clueless little boy there would be the built-in desire to see a naked woman just like there was in every other teenage boy. So either Ven hadn't figured out why he should like women yet, or perhaps…he just didn't like women.
Terra raised an eyebrow at his friend as he asked, "Ven, you do know where babies come from, right?"
Ven's eyes expanded and his face tinted pink again. "Yes!" he choked out indignantly.
"And I don't mean from the stork." Now Terra was just mocking.
Ven's face turned redder. "I know that!"
"Then you do know that when a mommy and a daddy love each very much--"
"I know how it works!" Ven's expression was a rather amusing combination of completely embarrassed and very grumpy. Terra couldn't help but chuckle.
"Okay, look," he began, feeling that, as Ven's surrogate big brother, he had the responsibility of teaching the boy about these kind of things. "First of all, you gotta get over how awkward things are gonna be between you and Aqua, because I can guarantee you that she won't stay mad about it. She's a very mature girl, so she'll treat you basically as if it never happened, all the while keeping in mind that it did. But as long as you act like you don't care, neither will she."
Ven's eyebrows drew together. "How can I avoid thinking about the whole thing, though? I mean, I can't get the image out of my mind, and it keeps coming back into my mind every time I look at her!" He let out a humorless laugh. "And how am I going to talk to her?! I mean, she's taller than me, so I mean…those are right in my line of vision!"
Terra shook his head. "That's the other thing. Ven, you saw a girl topless, and it sounds to me like you have yet to give this fact due appreciation."
"Ven, think about it. Let that image you keep repressing fill your mind for a moment."
"Just trust me for a second. Ignore, for a moment, that it was Aqua. Now, can you honestly tell me that the image of a girl without any clothes on isn't at least a little nice to look at?" Ven blinked at him for a minute before turning his gaze back to the horizon. Judging by the red that inflamed the boy's cheeks, Terra guessed that Ven was finally acknowledging the undeniable—naked women were nice to look at.
"Well," Ven finally admitted quietly, "It's not like it's...repulsive imagery, or anything." Terra smirked. "But, um, how is this supposed to help?"
Terra patted his shoulder. "Acceptance is the first step. Accept that moment, look at it, grow accustomed to it, don't repress it, and it shouldn't come popping up at inopportune times—namely, when you're trying to talk to Aqua."
Ven still wasn't sure, but he nodded anyway, deciding he should probably just trust his friend.
"You've see a girl topless, Ven. Not many fifteen year old boys can say that. You have bragging rights for the rest of life. Enjoy it; it might be years before you ever get to see another girl naked." He patted his friend on the shoulder again and left to go back to his training. As he walked away, he looked back over his shoulder to see Ven still staring out at the horizon, but he didn't miss the small smile perking at one corner of Ven's mouth.
Even trying to follow Terra's advice, it was a full four days before Ven could look Aqua in the eye, and when he did, he was surprised to see that she was treating him as if nothing had happened. It wasn't much longer after that that things between them returned to normal. And yet, things weren't completely the same. Ven would find himself staring at Aqua every now and then, noticing how gracefully her body curved even as she fought, or simply admiring the convexes and concaves of her body as she stood and watched the stars. And every so often she'd catch him staring, and right before Ven blushed and looked away, he would notice Aqua give him the smallest, slightest smile, and occasionally, he could swear, a quick wink.
A/N: So the original premise of Ven seeing Aqua topless was a case of plagarizing myself. I was toying with developing a futurefic multichap with Sora, Kairi, and Riku training keyblade apprentices of their own, and the youngest boy was still beyond oblivious to the world of girls--until he accidentally sees Kairi (who in this story would've been mid-late twenties) naked. But I have since abandoned that whole project, but decided that the premise could still work for Ven. And goodness knows Nomura gave Aqua a body worth envying. (I'd love to cosplay her one day, but sadly, I've nowhere near the assets to pull it off. Maybe if I bought a really, really good push-up bra...and stuffed it). The very ending was sort of inspired by the Sandlot, with the kid who makes out with the lifeguard girl, who would smile at him every so often after that. Sorry for the long A/N's on this. Review, please. Let me know if I missed anything in my editing. ALSO: my email has been messing with me. So it may be a few days before I get to reply to reviews and stuff.