I thought it would be interesting to write a story about Mia training Soren to use a sword, so here it is. Unfortunately, as I progressed with the story it didn't really focus much on the training, more on how Soren is rather intolerant of Mia but ends up having a change of heart. So although this was planned as a pairing story, it's a bit more focused on the friendship, at least during the time period of this story. Later...well, considering this is my favourite Fire Emblem pairing I'm sure you can guess. I wouldn't be able to stand not pairing those two together.

And just to let you know, friendlily and unsociability are both words, not spelling errors or made up words. Just letting you know now, so you don't misunderstand. I am a spelling freak, so I take my spelling VERY seriously. ;P

Disclaimer: I do not own Fire Emblem.

Training Lessons

The sun was just peeking over the horizon, the skies were filled with every colour from blue to pink, and a soft breeze blew. It was a peaceful morning...

"Hey, Soren! Good morning!"

...And the tranquility was gone. Soren sighed, irritated. There was only one person whose voice was as loud and cheerful as that, and she was the only person who could possibly ruin such a peaceful time for him without even realizing it.

He forced himself to remain neutral on the outside as Mia approached him, her blue hair ruffled slightly by the wind. She stopped in front of him, hands on her hips and a wide grin on her face. "How are you this morning?"

"What do you want, Mia?" Soren asked curtly, cutting straight to the chase. Mia never made such a display of greeting him just to ask how he was. She wanted something, probably for him to train with her.

"Well, this morning I got thinking," she began, unfazed by Soren's discourteous tone. "Most of the Greil Mercenaries know how to use a physical weapon. Actually everyone, except for you."

"And I'm the only one who uses magic," Soren interrupted, "and I'd prefer to leave it that way. I don't need a material weapon to prove my strength. Now, if you'll excuse me..." Soren began to walk off, but Mia got in his way.

"But what if you end up without your tome? You'd be defenceless!" Mia insisted. "If you'd only try, I could-"

"I told you I don't need another weapon!" Soren snapped. He stalked off towards his room, hoping to be able to read his tomes in peace there.

"Ike insisted," the swordswoman stated, stopping Soren dead in his tracks. His body was suddenly filled with cold dread. He didn't...

"He did," she said, as if reading his thoughts. "And he wants me to train you."

Oh, Great Ashera, no...

"We start at noon. Better be prepared, 'cause I ain't gonna go easy on you!" Mia flashed him another one of her wide grins and skipped off, leaving Soren to wallow in pity and fear, hoping this day would be over quickly.

As usual, fate wanted to make him suffer for its enjoyment.

Soren had passed the time studying one of his tomes. He had become so enthralled with it that he had actually forgotten about meeting Mia at noon. Until she came to remind him...

"You forgot about our training session!" the blue-haired swordswoman accused as she came up behind the wind sage. She slammed his book shut and dragged him onto the training fields by his cloak, ignoring his protests.

"Alright, let's begin," Mia said, tossing a sword at Soren's feet. He simply stared at it, hoping that maybe if he didn't cooperate she'd just leave him alone. Fat chance.

"Well? Aren't you going to pick it up?"

Soren shifted his gaze from the sword to her. "Must I do this?"

Mia shrugged in sympathy. "Those were the Boss's orders."

The wind sage sighed, bending down to pick up the steel weapon. Might as well get this over with...

"Okay, first you've gotta learn how to grip your sword," she began. Seriously? I have to learn how to hold a sword? What a waste of time! I can't believe Ike forced me to do this...

She seemed to be following his train of thought. "It's not as easy as you think. You have to grasp it tight enough that it won't be flung out of your hands when you attack and defend with it, but it also has to be loose enough so that you can strike accurately. Think of it like an extension of your arm. If it's straight and stiff, it's hard to guide it anywhere, but if it's loose and unsteady your blows will have little effect. You have to hold it just right for your attacks to deal the most damage." She took out her own sword to demonstrate the 'perfect grip', as she called it.

Since he clearly wasn't going to get out of this anytime soon, Soren decided to play along and pretend he was interested in learning. He grabbed his sword and shifted his hands slightly to mirror Mia's pose. She nodded in approval.

"Looking good. Now try some experimental swings to make sure that your sword flows." She demonstrated for him. Reflected sunlight gleamed off of the silver steel as her sword slashed the air with grace and beauty, something Soren would have never believed a weapon was possible of doing. But maybe it was the sword wielder that gave the weapon its unmatched elegance.

Soren blinked in shock as he realized what he had just said. He had indirectly called Mia beautiful.

"Hey, you alright, Soren?" Mia called from across the training field, snapping him out of his thoughts. He nodded in response. "That's good; now, try swinging your sword."

Soren did as instructed, knowing that the sooner he cooperated the sooner his stupid lessons would be finished and he would be free to return to his tomes. He saw Mia studying him from the corner of his eye as he watched his sword to make sure he was doing it right. The lessons would be over faster if he got it right the first time.

"Not bad, but your arms are a little stiff. They need to flow more." Great, now she's going to give me a speech about being 'one with the sword'. Why on Tellius did it have to be me subjected to this torture?

Expecting a lecture, Soren started when he felt Mia's hands on his. "You need to loosen your arms a bit. Let them flow gently like water."

She moved his hands gently in a slashing motion, demonstrating how to do it. But Soren wasn't paying any attention to that. The only thing that his mind was focused on was the fact that Mia was holding his hands. No one, other than Ike, had ever physically touched him so friendlily like that before. It was only ever a congratulatory pat on the back or an arm being gripped to restrain him. Never had anyone touched him in such a gentle and friendly way, mainly because they had no reason, not that they desired to anyway, but also because he had never wanted them to. He had never been comfortable with physical touch because of his hatred of others and his Branded blood. But this was nice; he felt himself almost enjoying it...

"Soren?" Mia's voice brought him back to the present. She was standing in front of him and no longer holding his hands, hers instead placed at her hips and a confused look on her face. He could have sworn he saw a bit of worry and even more well-hidden disappointment, though he had no idea why. "Are you alright? You kind of drifted off, there..."

The wind sage quickly recovered his composure. "Yes, I'm fine."

Mia looked unconvinced, but didn't question him further. "Alright, so as I was saying, your arms need to be looser..."

The rest of the lesson went by quicker than Soren had expected it to. Once he had gotten down how to hold his sword properly, Mia had shown him a few basic techniques for both offense and defence. He had actually thought it rather interesting, and near the end of the tutorial he found, much to his surprise, that he was actually enjoying himself a little. Soren liked the feeling of swinging his sword. He was getting the hang of it, though he was nowhere near Mia's grace and expertise with the deadly blades.

Mia sighed contentedly, sticking her blade into the ground and resting her hand on it. "Okay, we're done. Good job, Soren! You got the hang of it faster than I expected. Now if you'll excuse me I've got some training to do. Can't let Boss get ahead of me!"

Soren blinked. "Wait...that's it?"

Mia looked a bit confused. "...Yup."

"No complicated attacks, no tricky manoeuvres, no full-on practice fights?"

"Nope. You've completed all the basics," Mia explained, sheathing her sword as she prepared to leave. "That's all the Commander asked me to do."

Soren felt a sense of loneliness as Mia walked off, pausing only to smile and wave to him. He had begun to enjoy their training together, and now that it was over they wouldn't have any reason to interact other than missions. Soren had never really given her a chance before, but now that he had been forced to work with her for a day he saw that she wasn't all that bad to hang out with. Maybe they could have even been...friends.

"Wait!" Soren called out before he could stop himself.

Mia turned to face him, her face half lit by the orange glow of the setting sun. "Yeah?"

The wind sage cursed himself silently. He had called out to her before he knew what he would say. "Um...Would you...Would you mind continuing to train me?"

Confusion was etched on her face. "You want to keep learning how to use a sword? But I thought you hated the idea."

"I...had a change of heart." It was the truth; he had had a change of heart. But not about being taught how to use a sword.

She appeared to think it over for a moment, although Soren could tell she had already made up her mind by the joyous sparkle in her eyes. "Sure, why not? I'll meet you here at noon tomorrow. And don't forget, or I'll drag your sorry butt out here and drill you into the ground with training!"


Soren didn't think Mia was being serious with her threat, but he couldn't be sure...He'd just make sure he was right on time, so she didn't think he was afraid but he didn't risk her threat being true.

"See you tomorrow Soren!" She skipped off, giving him a wave which he returned, albeit a bit awkwardly. As he watched her disappear from the training grounds he began to wonder if they really could be friends, despite his unsociability.

Well, if she was willing to try then he would, too.