To my readers,
I've seen this challenge, a 50 one shot compilations based off of a series of words/prompts. So far I've seen one for Jade/Anise, and one for Jade/Luke. Being a hopeless Asch/Natalia fan I am working on my own "50" challenge using the same prompts as those before me. As my time is limited I will be putting them up a few at a time, eventually getting up to the promised fifty.
As always, Enjoy,
50 displaced fragments: Elegance and blood
He never stirred ,meaninglessly. Neither fidgeting or fussing. His stance, while holding a bit to military norm wasn't quite at attention. And when that lack of motion broke it was always shattered with an absent grace. It was that contrast between motion and lack of that Natalia found her first question. That first flaw in the "Bloody's" façade.
While Zao quietly submerged in dust, one grain at a time, she looked across the battle field and stared at him, the question sliding past her lips all unknowing.
"Are… were… you a noble?"
His snort said neither yes or no, only hinted at the violate temper that had earned him such a dark nominative. But it told her one thing, he'd heard.
Lips pressed into a thin line, Asch set the potion to her lips. Flushed, shaken and shaking as the poison ran through her veins, Natalia tossed her head from side to side. A mute, delusion-born, protest as the horrors crowded about her head.
Setting a hand against her brow, a chill touch that felt too much like claws in her tortured mind, Natalia cried out.
Still, an opening was an opening. Taking advantage of that moment Asch set the bottle to her lips and made her drink, though she shivered and whimpered the whole time. So cold, so very cold she quaked and sobbed.
And he held her close, doing what little he could to help.
The words "when we were young" never failed to evoke his ire. But there was that moment, just one second before each explosion that something wistful and soft would filter through his eyes.
Back to her, quickly retreating, utterly indignant, Natalia bit her lip and wondered as to why she had to open her mouth and agitate his wounds so. But, then recalling the softness a second ago, she had her answer. Or part of it anyways. Biting her lip so hard she thought she tasted blood Natalia waited even as Asch stormed away.
"It's tactics Natal. In any siege, any battle, the archers are always in the back of the party. It gives you time to pick your targets, time to aim, and shoot."
And time to get away, if things get really bad. Though unsaid it hung between them, perfectly articulated when there eyes met.
Purple wafted from the bowls of soup, like curdles of violet miasma straight from the bowls of Auldrant. The image was just so… wrong… especially when considering that the… substance was supposed to be chicken soup.
Looking first left, than right, Asch found a sizable bush and when no one was looking poured the contents of his bowl about it's base. Another glance about confirmed no one had seen the act, and he sighed in relief, setting the now empty container aside.
Hearing the sigh, Natalia turned to him, and happy to see that someone had eaten, she smiled.
"Do you want some more?"
Only the discipline garnered in years of service as an Oracle knight kept him from screaming at that thought. Instead, wearing a rather worn smile, the God-General shook his head.
"No, I'm fine… thanks though."
"Are you sure?" She pleaded, still rather stung by the fact that no one else had been willing to even take a bite.
"Absolutely positive." Asch grinned.