Author's disclaimers: Guntz and Leorina are part of the Klonoa franchise, which is copyright of Namco and Klonoa Works. I do not own anything save perhaps for a fertile imagination, a decent writing skill and a laptop.
God, I'm nervous about posting this up. I got interested in doing this oneshot when I saw some of the works of other writers here on the site. (I should say at this point that have NOT copied anyone else work (at least, not intentionally, I haven't... look at the end notes to explain my apprehension.) and anyone's work I do emulate is either coincidence or subconscious fault.) Please bear in mind that this my first time at a) Klonoa fanfiction and b) romantic oneshots, so please go easy on me. That said, read and review!
Of Bounty Hunters and Sky Pirates
It had all started so much differently to how they had expected it. For a start, they were both in professions that could lead to potential conflict from the beginning. Sky Pirates raided and stole treasure from others, making them criminals. Bounty hunters were people who, for a substantial fee, captured or killed criminals. This obvious bad chemistry should have led to fighting. If they had been typical members of their chosen jobs then it would have happened like that. Instead, it had not led to any real fights.
She had been anything but the average Sky Pirate, being kinder and helping others, but still maintaining all the wonderful piratical bravado. She had once been corrupted by greed and sorrow, but had seen the error of her ways and was even now making amends. He had been pretty much the average bounty hunter, ruthless, confident, arrogant and ready to take the dirty jobs. He was also full of a desire for vengeance on the man who had stolen his innocence. They may never have even met had it not been for the single and simple fact that they both knew the same person as one another.
They had both been enemies of, and then friends with, the Dream Traveller, Klonoa of the Wind. They had fought him, but he had prevailed over them, and he had accepted them as friends when they had most needed his help. Over the course of a few adventures and travels, they had finally met one another through Klonoa. They had been courteous enough in greeting. They had displayed a casual rivalry in regards to profession. They had maintained a cool head in the face of each other. In their hearts, they both felt a spark of emotion for each other.
They had tried to keep this feeling from each other for a while, but it kept on eating away at them for such a while. They felt the yearning for each other in kindred spirits. They both had to be cold and compassionless for the most part, but even the coldest of people have an emotional core. They had both felt that core become stronger when they had first got to know each other well. Despite all this, they still couldn't bring themselves to reveal this sensation to each other. It was something they weren't used to. Then at last, the bounty hunter plucked up the courage, and did something completely out of his masculine character.
He asked the Sky Pirate out for a picnic.
It was a calm, cool autumn evening, and the blazing sun cast its white rays across the pastel blue sky and the smooth hill with its single magnificent oak tree. Beneath this tree sat Guntz, using it for shade. He was sitting in the way of someone trying to be casual, but is actually nervous as heck. He had his arms behind his head as he leant back on the tree bark, and his right leg crossed over his left. He wore his standard outfit, sans his goggles. He had a toothpick in his mouth, and this was being shoved from one corner of his mouth to the other by a frantic tongue.
He couldn't believe he had actually done it. He had managed to ask Leorina to meet him here for a quiet evening together. He felt somewhat pathetic in this regard. He was a feared bounty hunter, one of the best. Shinigami Guntz, 'The Golden Killer', and here he was scared of being together with a woman, and a Sky Pirate for that matter. He wanted to curse the heavens for implanting such a trivial fear in his heart, but then a part of him felt that this was the right way forward. He did feel a sense of intimate fondness for Leorina. Ever since they had really got to know each other, he had felt this way, no matter how great his desire to suppress it.
Well, now he had managed to ask her out, and he felt suitably sheepish. Hah, a wolf feeling sheepish. Right now he'd laugh at any pun, good or bad. It was embarrassing that he had been so nervous about how he had asked her. She had been taken aback by the request, but she had agreed. She had even had a faint smile on her lips. Maybe she really wanted this to happen as well. The hopes and fears for this outing played endlessly in Guntz's head. He shifted up and leant over to check his picnic hamper. It was a proper, well made wicker basket with a cloth-wrapped carry handle and a large polka napkin overflowing from inside.
The contents of this delightful little goody bag was a salad, some sandwiches, two iced buns, a bottle of fine vintage red wine, and a pair of plates, wine glasses and forks. On his bounty hunter's budget plus savings, the food and drink was a simple yet quality package. He just hoped it would be enough to make Leorina happy. He smiled as he put the lid back and put his hands behind his head again. He casually spat out his toothpick and closed his eyes. He was ready. He had the food, the wine, the setting. He had to get this all right. He didn't know why he cared about this so much, but it had to go right. It would be all right.
He was interrupted from his reverie when his keen ears twitched at the sound of footsteps on the grass. His eyes snapped open and he quickly got up from the tree; too quickly, in fact. He tripped up on a tree root and yelped in surprise before his head connected with the grass beneath him and set his eyes rattling their sockets. He cursed softly and pulled himself to his knees just in time to see Leorina appear from behind the oak tree. She wore her standard outfit, except she wore no helmet now. Her flowing red hair was tied into her near-iconic ponytail. She had a look of concern mixed with surprise. No doubt his outburst had startled her.
Hoping to heaven he hadn't already screwed up, Guntz got to his feet and he brushed himself off. He managed to say hurriedly "Leorina, it... it's good to see you again." She smiled and Guntz felt a warm feeling surge through him. No, he hadn't messed up, he was still going well. "It's good to see you too, Guntz" Leorina replied almost brightly. Guntz, trying to be something of the gentleman he had never before been, indicated the hamper and said "Why don't we sit down and have a drink. I brought wine, I... I hope you like it." Stop stuttering and get on with it, you fool, his mind hissed urgently at him.
Leorina's smile broadened and she nodded. They both sat down together in the oak tree's shade. Guntz reached over and planted the hamper on his lap. He pulled out the two glasses and handed one to Leorina. He then got out the bottle and uncorked it. He poured a generous helping into Leorina's glass first, and then he filled his own up. He put down the bottle, picked up his glass, and turned back to her. As he met her eyes, he was momentarily stunned by their immediate beauty. They seemed to shine and sparkle like priceless gems. Then he recovered himself and they toasted.
Leorina took a sip of the wine, and Guntz mentally crossed his fingers. Please let her like it. Oh, please let her like it. Don't let me have messed up now. Immediately, her eyes widened with pleasant surprise. They twinkled even more, and Guntz found himself lost again. Her deep, flowing voice brought him back. "It's wonderful, Guntz. I just love it. What vintage is it?" Guntz couldn't have answered that question for a cash prize, and he admitted it so. "I don't know. I'm not really an expert with vintages." In his mind he screamed don't be offended! I'm just not used to this. Give me a chance! I...
His mind was stopped when she said "Oh. Oh well, it doesn't matter, it's still a really good wine. Thank you, Guntz." He smiled happily, and he felt relief so strong it might has well have been steaming off of him. The next part of the evening has passed with a blur. They had tucked in to the rest of the picnic hamper's contents, and Leorina had still been thrilled by the trouble he had gone to in order to get this all ready for her. She had been complimentary and courteous, and he had found his head enough to be charming back. After they had finished off the iced buns, they had shifted around to the other side of the oak tree to watch the sunset together.
Guntz soon felt Leorina lean her head against his shoulder affectionately. He felt the intimate warmth flow through him with renewed vigour. They were in contact! Tentatively, he lifted his left arm and wrapped it around her shoulder. She looked at him with a loving smile, and it was a loving smile, there was no mistaking it. "This is such a beautiful view. I just wish I could stare at it forever." Guntz suddenly lost control of his mouth. The corny one-liner erupted from his mouth without any precaution. "I can think of something more beautiful." In his mind, he howled and cringed with agonising awkwardness. How was she going to react to that one?
Leorina looked at him with surprise, but then he chuckled and said "That's so sweet of you to say. You do know how to flatter." Guntz felt shocked that she reacted positively to the line. Darn it, he was being too pessimistic about all this. He needed to step forward and take an initiative. "Well, it is true" he replied to her "I think you surpass the view by a mile. I... I..." The reason for his sudden loss of vocal control was due to his bounty hunter mind waking up treacherously at this point and kicking in. He became aware that he was being romantic and close with Leorina! He suddenly wanted to spill his guts, as though his sharp mind had decided he needed to get it all out in the open.
"Leorina, I-" She cut him off by putting a solitary gloved finger to his lips. "Please, just call me Leo" she told him. Leo... It was her real name, Guntz was vaguely aware. The only other person he knew in the whole of the dream realms who she allowed to call her Leo was Tat. If she was going to let him use it, she must really, really care for him. He went on "L... Leo, you know... all of this is... is just a show. I mean... well... I wanted this to be a good evening together. I... I wanted you to be happy, I just... I... What I'm trying to say is... is that I... I l-"
"You love me" Leorina finished the sentence for him. Guntz paused, and then nodded as he stared into her dazzling eyes. She pulled her self up and put her arms around him. She smiled yet again and leaned in closer to him. She raised her mouth up to his ear and whispered "I love you too." As she leant back down, Guntz felt himself melt with happiness. Suddenly, his cold and tough-as-nails exterior was gone, leaving a much softer and happier side to him. He just wanted to be with her now. She was something which took him back to happier times. She made him regain some of his lost innocence.
Without any further hesitation, Guntz moved over, put his left hand behind Leorina's head, and kissed her. They both closed their eyes and just pressed their lips together. He felt his heart flutter with excitement. Her lips were soft, and they seemed to caress his soothing and otherwise bitter mouth. His mind was engulfed by his feelings and this single, wonderful sensation. All of his nerves and concerns about this whole thing dissolved in that kiss. He wanted it to last for as long as it could. Eventually, though, they both had to pull away. As Guntz opened his eyes again, his first sight was that of Leorina smiling and blushing at him.
"Wow, I never imagined it would be quite like that" she gasped blissfully. Guntz felt himself begin to go red in the cheeks, and he smiled with awkwardness. "You were wonderful. I... I don't really know what to say, Leo." They both slid down until they were lying on the ground together. He and Leorina held hands and leant sideways to look at each other from their newfound positions on the grass. The sun beyond was dipping ever further below the horizon. With his other hand, Guntz shook off his glove and gently stroked his love's head. He could feel the softness of her hair through his fur, and he fell even more for her.
She smiled and said "hmmm, this little picnic really went well, didn't it." Guntz huffed back. "Yeah, it did. I'm just glad I was able to please you tonight, and I'm also glad that I was able to get my feelings out in the open." Leorina brought her free left hand over and caressed Guntz's cheek. The fondness she was displaying, the warmth of her hand, all of it made his heart's flame grow brighter still. He did the same with his hand, but he had to shift himself to free it from under his left shoulder. She closed her eyes and her blush resurged. Guntz leant over and whispered "Leo..."
She opened her eyes again and he moved his whole body against hers. He suddenly hugged her tight and rolled on top of her. She cried out in shock, and Guntz smiled at his own unexpected audacity. He chuckled and firmly began to kiss her again. He wanted to feel her lips again. He wanted that buzz he got before. He craved it. They both sighed inside their mouths as they kissed. Then, while he was off-guard, Leorina used his own body weight against him and flipped him onto his back, and he yelped for the second time that evening. Now she had the upper hand. She kept one hand pressed to the grass to steady her, and one was attached to the back of his head and played with Guntz's own ponytail.
He chuckled even though their lips were still connected, and he began to show a similar playful affection to her ponytail. Every now and then they would open their mouths for breath, but soon they fell to it again. They both laughed and sighed and play-fought and teased and kissed for a lost amount of time. They just enjoyed the love and care they both showed in kind. It was romantic and heart-warming for the pair of them. It might have well been the most glorious event of their lives so far, and they would never forget a moment of it.
When they finally stopped, laughing and breathing heavily and glowing inside, they smiled as they got up from the ground. Guntz quickly retrieved his hamper, and returned to the woman he loved. As he got close to her she said "Thank you for tonight, Guntz. You've no idea how happy this had made me feel." Guntz smiled and replied "The feeling's mutual, Leo. It's wonderful to escape from being a cold bounty hunter for a while." Leorina grinned and sighed. After a pause she said "Well, good night, Guntz." Before she walked off completely, Guntz called out to her.
"Hey, Leo, wait!" She turned to look at him from halfway down the hill. Guntz carried on once he had her attention "would you like to come here again sometime soon?" He saw Leorina consider the idea quickly, but she nodded happily and called back "yes, of course! Tomorrow lunchtime would be good!" Guntz smiled to himself, and told her "Absolutely! It's a date, then!" Leorina huffed, and Guntz's still sharp ears picked this up easily. They both said their good nights and Guntz stayed on the hill just long enough for Leorina to have gone.
He put his hamper down carefully in the slowly disappearing sun, then did a little hop and punched the air simultaneously. Tonight had been perfect. The heavens had answered his prayers and ignored his curses and delivered unto him the most wonderful woman he could ever have hoped to fall in love with. Now she was his, they both loved each other immensely, they had shared a successful first date and now they had plans for a second. Guntz's soul shone like a sunbeam. Everything in the world was already looking that little bit brighter. He thought about what to bring for lunch tomorrow. He knew, and even if it didn't all get eaten, it would still be a show of his thoughtfulness.
He reacquired his hamper and set off down the now shadowed hill, anticipating what the future held for him and his newfound love. It had, beyond a shadow of a doubt, been a perfect evening.
Author's notes: GOD DAMN IT! I've just read Solitary Shadow's 'Surprise Treat' drabble fic, and the similarity is painful! I mean,its autumn, it's from Guntz's perspective, they even plan to head for a hill! Where mine is set! Oh, my subconscious has betrayed me! Oh well, it was at least intended to be original... Well, Solitary Shadow, you said you wanted more Guntz x Leorina, and here I have done what I can. I hope you all enjoyed this quick oneshot. It took me just one night to finish, and it was done on a whim. I know that the characters are a little OOC for this piece, but then a lot of romantic oneshots are. I am not a fanboy, and neither am I in particular favour of this pairing, I just thought it would be an interesting experiment. Bear in mind that am at a loss when writing about Guntz. Despite having seen wiki articles about him, video montages, people's descriptions and, yes, fanfiction interpretations of him, I have never played Klonoa Heroes, Dream Championship or Beach Volleyball, so I know next to nothing about him in-game. I have played Klonoa 2, and so a fair bit about Leorina, but that doesn't matter. Klonoa has always been a favourite game series of mine, and the level of fanfiction gold to be had from this topic is astounding. Chibikawa's epic 'Legend of Rebirth' still remains my favourite fanfiction on this site to date, and is what inspired me to begin posting my Sonic fic up so soon. Enough of my real world ramblings now. Again, I hope that this is enough to entertain you, dear reader. Who knows, I may do some more Klonoa based work...