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Title: Beyond a Curse
Summary: He may be Lagoon the Cursed to everyone else, but she thinks there's something more there. L'Arc/Shelly
Author: mistlove
Copyrights: Plot is mine. Everything else belongs to Marvelous Entertainment and Ignition.
Warnings: Up to mid-game spoilers. Some OOC.
Notes: It's not that I don't like L'Arc/Ryfia. It's just not a dynamically interesting pairing.
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Takes place after the party's meeting with Shelly about the Carbunculus peace talks.

"Ah, L'Arc?"

L'Arc looked back, surprised. "Yeah?"

"I want to have a word with just you. Just you," she emphasized with a glance at Ryfia.

"Oh, lucky L'Arc." Serge grinned as he waved the others to the door. "I always knew you'd be a lady-killer."

"Excuse me," Shelly coughed politely into her hand. "I'm not quite as amorous as you think, Serge."

Serge blinked before smirking. "My apologies, my apologies. Don't take too long, L'Arc-y boy."

The door shut behind the group.

"Did you... um, need anything?" the mercenary asked awkwardly.

Shelly smiled, leaning against the desk. "I wanted it straight from you; what really happened back in Antrax?"

L'Arc scratched his head. "That doesn't really matter anymore, does it? It happened and well, it's not like talking about it will undo what happened."

"You're such an honest boy," Shelly laughed. "You're right. The suffering and pain the Olquinians went through will never be undone. But your reputation bothers me. I want to know if you're truly Lagoon the Cursed or..." Interest flickered in her eyes.

"Or...?"

"Well, what happened?"

L'Arc hesitated. "Sir Weiss... sent me on a mission to Antrax to destroy the Skywalk."

Shelly frowned. "Why? For ray? I thought that the Meridian Empire had enough ray."

"Well... we did. Simmah provided the Empire with the ray we needed... but I bonded with Simmah when I became the Child of Eesa."

"Oh, I see."

"So I was sent to destroy the Skywalk to we could have access to ray again." L'Arc paused. "And as soon the Empire had ray again, Sir Weiss sent the army in and spread news that I was leading them. Shit happened and Alf split off on his own during all the chaos."

It was silent for a long moment.

"You know," Shelly folded her arms across her chest. "I see no reason to believe you."

L'Arc gave her a bitter smile. "You don't have to." He turned. "I'll talk to Sir Weiss for you."

"Just because I don't have a reason to believe you doesn't mean I don't believe you." Shelly gripped his shoulder lightly, turning him to face her. She covered her eye with her one hand. "I didn't see beyond the actions. I only took in what I saw." She shifted her hand to her ear. "I would believe anything I heard. I didn't listen to you when you claimed innocence." She shifted her hand to cover her mouth. "And when I finally began to suspect you weren't as bad as you seemed, I didn't speak up for you."

L'Arc propped a hand on his hip as he shook his head. "It's okay. None of that matters anymore. Having a notorious identity is pretty nice anyway. Helps you get into places easier."

Shelly chuckled. "Well, despite what you might say, I'm going to help you clear up this misunderstanding." She took his hand and squeezed it. "This is just between us." She flushed slightly. "I'm a woman of power. I can't show any weakness."

"... I know."

Shelly closed her eyes. "I wanted to cry at my father's funeral. But I didn't. I wanted to kill the bastards that assassinated my father. But I couldn't. I didn't have evidence. And now that I do, I can't afford to split the Republic up during the war." She opened her eyes. "Please. If not for me, for the people that are suffering and have died; stop Weiss."

He squeezed her hands back. "I'll do everything I can."

"Thank you," she whispered with a vibrant smile. She leaned up and pecked a kiss on his forehead. "My thanks," she explained as she pulled away. "It's customary in the Republic."

L'Arc flushed, putting a hand to his forehead as he nodded. "Oh... um, okay." He bowed his head respectfully. "You're welcome."

"Don't disappoint me." She smiled before reaching up to cover her mouth. "I've kept you too long. Go on, L'Arc."

"Alright. I'll see you at the peace talks, Director."

"Oh, looking a little flushed there, L'Arc-y!" Leslie teased as soon as he closed the door behind himself. "Did something happen?"

"L'Arc, you bad boy!" Cecille pouted as she clutched to Ryfia's arm.

"You heard Minimal Lady. You player," Serge accused with a grin. "At least you're taking after me."

"Shut up," L'Arc snapped as he strolled past them. "Nothing happened; we were just talking about what happened in Olquina. We're going to talk to Sir Weiss now."

The party walked in silence for awhile as they made their way out of the Senate.

"I didn't know it was customary to give forehead kisses...," L'Arc mumbled to himself.

Leslie and Serge exchanged a glance before grinning.

"She got him," they announced in unison.

"Who got... who?" Ryfia asked, tilting her head to the side in confusion.

"Oh, nothing. Don't worry about it, Ryfia."
_ _ _ _ _ _ _

End Notes: WHAT IS THIS CRAP PLZ. Sorry.

NO PERVERTED COMMENTS AND OR REQUESTS IN REVIEWS. RUDE REVIEWS WILL RESULT IN THE STORY BEING TAKEN DOWN. THANK YOU FOR RESPECTING THE AUTHOR.