A/N: This is a collection of remastered sentences from the five billion Seth/Eirika one shots I wrote after I beat Sacred Stones for the first time in seventh grade (and this is barely an exaggeration). The stories themselves weren't all that good individually (given that I was only eleven when I wrote them), but every once in awhile I would come across a sentence or idea I thought was on the right the right track. Thus I edited and compiled them, and this is the result. Although they come from many different sources, I did try to make them as cohesive as possible, so I hope I was able to do that in this.
Disclaimer: I don't the own the FE characters/story lines.
Even before he swears his oath of fealty to the royal family, the moment Seth lays eyes on the young princess of Renais, he knows that he has found a treasure worth sacrificing everything to protect.
Eirika flushes with guilt when Ephraim asks her what she thinks of the new batch of royal knights, because out of the hundreds of men who entered into her family's service, she only noticed one.
He doesn't understand why a delicate princess like her would ever ask him to teach her how to fight, but the fire dancing in Eirika's eyes as she looks at him tells him that there is more strength and conviction in her than her soft and fragile beauty betrays.
Eirika is amazed by the grace and finesse of Seth's battle prowess, even though she knows he is holding his true strength back to keep her safe.
Everything about her from her soft and gentle hands to her flower scented perfume is a tempting distraction, but he resists her interference with all the will power he possesses so that he can better focus on protecting her like a true and loyal knight should.
She knows she should be studying history with Ephraim, but Eirika finds herself once again gazing out the window overlooking the training fields as if she needs the sight of Seth in order to find the strength to go through the mundane motions of her life.
Seth prides himself on having a fair degree of control over his thoughts and emotions, but even he cannot deny that Eirika has something to her, a strange and unsettling ability be inordinately captivating by simply smiling or saying his name.
She cannot always explain what draws her to Seth, but she knows she needs something stable and true in her life for her to return to time and time again while everything else shifts and scrambles into confusion and obscurity; if only just a small piece, she needs the clarity he brings to keep herself grounded.
When he steps in front of her, her reaction makes him catch his breath; the way her dimples unfold against her cheeks as her lips spread into a wide and becoming smile fills him with the knowledge that it was their eyes meeting and his presence before her that changed her so noticeably.
As excited as Eirika is to at last be meeting the prince of Grado, she can't help but dwell entirely on the fact that she will spend the journey to Serafew with Seth on his horse, her back pressed warmly against his broad and muscular chest.
Seth is glad that Eirika and Ephraim have found a companion their own age to spend time with, but whenever Lyon's arm brushes against Eirika's, he silently wishes to himself that their new friend didn't have to be a kind and eager prince so perfectly suited to his beloved princess.
Lyon speaks to Eirika as if he is about to offer her something, but slowly his eyes fall on Ephraim and Seth talking in the distance, and he mutters quietly to himself that he can't stand up to the other men in her life the way he is now.
Serafew fades behind them as they ride back to the castle, their home, but Seth is haunted by the knowledge that one day he will return Eirika there, not as the princess of Renais, but as the future queen of Grado.
Eirika had felt welcomed to Grado thanks to Lyon and all his efforts on her behalf, but now she doesn't understand why she is fleeing his people's lances and swords with Seth when he solemnly swore she would always have a home in his nation.
Valter's lance rakes mercilessly across his shoulder, but Seth feels no pain other than the unbearable knowledge that if he falls here, Eirika will have to stand up against this bloodthirsty man alone and unprotected.
Even with the might of the Grado Empire at their backs and fear racing rampantly through her heart, enclosed tightly in Seth's fiercely protective arms, Eirika feels more in love than she ever has before.
To Seth's shame and embarrassment, as he presses Eirika against him and flies her away to the Frelian border, his mind orders him to abandon every vow he's ever made to Renais in order to take his beloved away and build a life with her untouched by this world of fear.
She feels sick to her stomach the first time her sword pierces the skin of her enemy, but Seth is there behind her as she collapses in nausea, a constant and comforting presence to dispel her guilt and terror at the sight of the death wrought by her hands.
Seth hadn't expected her to show such strength in the face of a seemingly hopeless situation, but when she orders King Hayden to allow them to travel to Grado to find her missing brother, he knows he would follow her to the valley of death itself if she asked him to.
Eirika knows that it is Seth's duty to make sure she does not over exert herself on the field or suffer greatly from exhaustion, but she wonders sometimes if he is only doing it because he has to or if truly feels the tenderness his concerned touches hesitatingly reveal.
Her fingers gently brush against the scar Valter's lance left on his shoulder, and he knows he should ask her to stop indulging in this forbidden intimacy between them even though the last thing he wants is to lose the sensation of Eirika's soft and perfumed hands against his bare and secret skin.
She knows that Seth is doing his best to hide from her the extent of his pain, but whenever he lifts his lance arm to strike an enemy, his face winces at the onslaught of pain and her hearts sinks in fear that he will continue to suffer on her behalf without ever allowing her to sacrifice for him in return.
The more Eirika insists on being at his side, whether to spar or share a meal or discuss her fears for the safety of the world, the more Seth begins to realize that he may not be the only one near to crossing the line that should be maintained between them.
"What are you thinking of, Eirika?" her brother asks her as they set up camp, and for the first time she says nothing to him, keeping her confusing feelings locked somewhere deep inside her, hidden and safe.
With Eirika's preference for him becoming increasingly clear, Seth knows that he is duty bound to convince her to redirect her affections in spite of his unwitting feelings of relief and honor that she would choose him over all the other men she knows.
As Seth lectures her about how she has been forgetting her duties by favoring him so greatly over the other knights, Eirika's cheeks burn in shame, not because of the truth of his statements, but because she has angered him with feelings he clearly does not return.
When Eirika admits the affections she felt as they fled from the Grado army at the start of the war, it is all Seth can do to stop himself from abandoning his rejection of this beautiful, loving woman whose heart so greatly mirrors his own.
It hurts Eirika to hear that her title is the obstacle that must keep her from loving freely when she knows that she is merely a structure of bones, muscle, sinew, and blood like everyone else, with only a name and a crown to make her anything special.
Even as Seth walks away from Eirika after telling her that they can never be together, he can't help but desire the slightest taste of what he is running away from, all the soft and untouched beauty that is not and will never be his.
In spite of Seth's confession that she has occupied much of his thoughts for some time now, Eirika feels more alone and unloved than she ever has before as she listens to his endless song of silence.
Seth knows that they are both better off this way, but no effort on his part- the distance, the caution, the practiced indifference he displays for her benefit- can eradicate what he feels for her.
No matter what Eirika does or how many times she tries to change her heart as Seth instructed her to, he lingers on within her thoughts, an impossible hope she just can't bring herself to forsake.
Seth defiantly accepts Eirika's cool gaze when she notices Innes and Vanessa embracing on the outskirts of their camp, even though he secretly wonders just as well as she does why the princess of Renais can't have her freedoms if the prince of Frelia can.
As their company sits around the fire discussing the last battle they fought, Eirika can only think of how Seth is there beside her, only inches away, even though she knows there are still miles and miles for her to overcome before she can ever reach him again.
Seth's eyes flicker when he tells Eirika that he does not want her to spend time with him anymore, discretely betraying how much he does not mean a word he is saying, even though he can clearly see by her heartbroken expression that she believes he is telling the truth.
When Eirika sees Seth talking intently with Natasha, she feels drowned in emptiness rather than jealousy because Seth's life, unlike hers, has been able to continue on in a normal and comfortable fashion as if she had never been there to alter his course at all.
He remembers how her beautiful blue eyes used to shine vibrantly whenever she saw him, but now, thanks to his dismissal of her, all that remains is a dark veil, a shadow of her former self.
Eirika puts on a happy face for Ephraim's sake, especially since he's now so comfortably settled with Tana, but being only human, she finds herself burning in jealousy that so many people around her are peacefully falling in love while she has been injured and left bitterly on her own.
Seth has nothing to say to Ephraim when he suspiciously questions, "Is something going on between you and Eirika?" because he sees no point in insisting that there is still something between them when he knows in his heart he has lost her forever.
Eirika feels sick for the rest of the night after witnessing the Demon King preying upon Lyon's soul, but her broken heart is somewhat healed by Seth's presence beside her as she cries herself to sleep, a sign that he is her tender protector once again, if only for one night.
It is hard at first for him to speak to Eirika in the way he once did before they made their declarations to one another, but little by little he finds himself letting her back in, slowly renewing the bond they'd shared that had been impossible for him to live without.
She can still sense that there is a wall between them, but this time she is determined to break it before his duties once again convince him to turn his back on her barely healing heart.
Kyle and Forde share a knowing smile when they ask him how Princess Eirika is feeling, and Seth realizes in surprise that he may be the only one to see anything wrong with the blossoming relationship between the princess and himself.
She and Ephraim had once vowed to oversee Renais together, but now she thinks of wearing a crown on her head with such revulsion that she knows she must give her country entirely over to her brother so that she can be happy, and, most importantly, free.
He wants to apologize to her for everything and explain that nothing in his heart has changed, but has only grown stronger and more certain with time, but she places a finger against his lips to silence him, informing him gently with her eyes that she already knows everything, and that he doesn't need to justify anything to her anymore.
Eirika is afraid she is only imagining it when he places a finger under her chin and draws her face forward towards his, but never before has she dreamed up something as lifelike as the fierce devotion in his eyes and the warm breath brushing enticingly against her lower lip.
Seth had guilty wondered once before what this would feel like, this intimate and searching first kiss, but never in his wildest dreams did he ever think that she would actually be here like this with him, sharing in his love in a moment that was not only perfect, but achingly and undeniably real.
Once again Eirika asks Seth to let her see his wound, this time because she at last appreciates how close she came to losing everything she has been blessed with now.
"You'd better take good care of her," Ephraim warns Seth with a brotherly smile, knowing that Seth is the last person who needs to be reminded of how precious and deserving of happiness Eirika truly is.
She sits in front of him on his horse, smiling to herself as the sun sets over Renais and he pulls her closer against his chest to place a kiss on the back of neck, feeling for the first time in her life that she is fully and completely at home.