It's been a long time since my last fanfic. It's been even longer since I've seen the Nanoha-shows. Yet when I watched one or two episodes again, I couldn't resist thinking up some family fluff for the NanoFate-pairing and their adorable daughter. I already have three or four more ideas for chapters (no ongoing story, just anecdotes), but let's see how you like this first. This will probably be quite sappy. You have been warned.
The first chapter is about the scene in episode 15, when Vivio slips and falls and Nanoha wants her to stand up on her own, while Fate helps her standing up. Cute scene. Did I mention this could get sappy? Fate and Nanoha are just friends in this chapter, but Fate has been wondering for a while if they could be more.
Disclaimer: I don't own MGLN's story or characters - but I own this story and all grammar mistakes in it! Hah!
Bad daughter? Good mother?
The blond Enforcer, who had just been relaxing on the couch in her room in the Mobile Division 6 Headquarters, opened her eyes. A smile immediately brightened her face when the little girl in front of her caught her eye. She couldn't help it, even if she had wanted to – looking at her godchild awakened feelings in her which she had felt for very few people in her life, at least this strongly. Fondness, care, a pretty high amount of protective instinct... probably a frightening amount, if tested. It was amazing. She had known the cute little girl with the mismatched eyes for a very short amount of time, but Fate already felt closer to her than to most other people.
"Yes, Vivio?" she asked.
The little girl reached out her hands to Fate, begging to be lifted up. Fate smiled and met her godchild's wish, seating Vivio on her lap. The little girl hugged her mama's waist and laid her head on Fate's chest, seeking comfort. A sudden wave of tenderness spread through Fate's body and she started stroking Vivio's hair. Was this how Lindy-kaasan felt around her? Suddenly Fate felt a little bad. Because of all the... punishments Precia had inflicted on her, Fate had been a distant girl, always fearing some kind of punishment, even though her head believed that Lindy would never do something like that. Her new mother had fought a long battle until Fate had finally agreed to be adopted and call the admiral "mother", showing that she was finally able to trust the teal-haired woman fully. To think that Fate had deprived this patient, gentle soul of the trust Vivio was showing so openly right now... it made her feel a little guilty. But her thoughts were interrupted, when Vivio suddenly raised her head and looked at her. With a sad expression. Come to think of it, Vivio had been really silent since them eating together after training with Erio, Caro and the others. As if something was bothering her.
"Vivio?" Fate asked worried. "What's wrong?"
"Fate-mama," Vivio murmured. "Is Vivio bad?"
"What?" Fate was dumbfounded. Why would Vivio think that? She stood up, seating the child on the couch and kneeling in front of her, clasping Vivio's small hands. "Vivio, of course you are not bad! Why would you think that?"
Vivio sniffed, looking on her legs. "But... Fate-mama told Vivio not to fall. And Vivio fell and Nanoha-mama did not help Vivio up." Vivio sniffed again and looked up. "Vivio is bad because she fell."
Fate blinked, but then she remembered when Vivio slipped and fell when she visited her mamas after the training session earlier today. She put one of her hands to Vivio's cheek, caressing it.
"No," she said firmly. "No Vivio, you are NOT a bad girl!" Now she understood why Vivio hadn't said something until Nanoha had gone showering. The little girl was crushed because she thought she had disappointed her mother. "And Nanoha isn't angry at you, really not!"
"Really?" Vivio asked. At least she didn't look like she'd burst into tears any second. But being her and Nanoha's little crybaby, Fate knew this could change again very soon. "But..."
"Listen, Vivio," Fate said, sitting next to Vivio on the couch again, never letting go of Vivio's hands. "Nanoha just wants Vivio to become a big, strong girl, like herself. She wants you to stand up on your own, because then you don't need to be afraid of falling anymore."
Vivio leaned against Fate. "But Fate-mama helped Vivio" she argued.
Fate twisted her mouth slightly. Tricky. Now the little girl was thinking, that no matter what she did, she would disappoint one of her mothers. Still Fate felt a little proud because Vivio could already imagine the consequences of her actions, at her young age. That's my girl, she thought pridefully. Then she blinked. Her... girl? She already thought of the little girl as her own child? Nobody had ever found a place in Fate's heart that fast, not even Lindy-kaasan and Chrono-niichan... except... her... this auburn-haired girl that had aggressively forced her way into Fate's heart, showing her that there were other sources of acceptance and human warmth than trying to please her mother.
"Yes, I did," Fate agreed, putting her arm around Vivio and squeezing the girl's shoulder gently. "But Fate-mama also wants Vivio to become a big and strong girl. I just think that that Vivio still has much time to learn how to be big and strong." She kissed Vivio's hair and smiled. "And Fate-mama greatly enjoys helping Vivio, so Vivio can stay a child for a little longer. Okay?"
Vivio looked at her godmother, not looking sad anymore. "So Nanoha-mama and Fate-mama are not angry at Vivio?" she made sure.
"No," Fate assured her. "Even if Nanoha-mama is a little strict sometimes, your mamas always want you to be happy, Vivio. You will be big and strong soon enough, and your mamas will be very proud of you. But right now Nanoha-mama and Fate-mama are very happy, that you are our little girl who still needs us."
Vivio showed Fate a beaming smile, all traces of sadness vanished from her face. Then Fate heard something.
"I think Nanoha-mama is finished," she told her daughter. She put her finger to her lips, still smiling enrouragingly. "Don't tell her about this, okay Vivio? It would just make her sad. This can be our little secret, what do you think?"
Vivio nodded. "Un," she agreed.
"What are you two doing?" they heard Nanohas voice. When they looked up, the auburn-haired girl was standing there in her pyjamas, pouting at her friend and her daughter. "Are you spoiling Vivio again, Fate?"
"Yes, that's exactly what I'm doing," Fate confirmed, pulling her godchild closer and kissing her on the cheek. "Tell Nanoha-mama that you like cuddling with Fate-mama, Vivio."
Vivio giggled. "Un," she agreed nodding.
Nanoha's pout became more pronounced for a moment and she crossed her arms, faking anger, but as soon as she looked into the beaming face of her daughter, her features grew soft. She smiled at the little girl and stretched out her hand. "Vivio," she said with her gentlest voice. "Come here. We still have to brush your teeth and then we will go to bed. It was a long day."
"Un." Vivio nodded again, slipped out of Fate's grasp, earning a disappointed groan from the blonde girl, and ran to her mother, taking Nanoha's hand. While the two entered the bath again, Fate leaned back and stared at the now closed door, deep in thought. Now that she had calmed down Vivio, there was still one more thing she had to do...
"Nanoha. Nanoha, wake up."
Nanoha groaned. It had taken a while until Vivio had fallen asleep. Unlike Fate and her the little girl hadn't had a taxing training day and she had been excited to be with both of her mamas again. But Nanoha had been quite tired and she did not appreciate that hand that was shaking her shoulder. Or the persisting whispers. Not at all.
"Mmh, go 'way..."
"Nanoha, we need to talk," Fate whispered again, not louder, but with determination in her voice. "Now!"
Frustratedly Nanoha opened her eyes and frowned at her friend. "Aren't you tired?" she asked the blonde woman quietly.
"I am, but I need to talk to you," Fate whispered sternly. "It's about Vivio."
Nanoha immediately looked down on the sleeping form of her and Fate's daughter and reflexively raised her hand, as if to protect the little girl.
"Come," Fate continued and stood up, tiptoeing through the room until she reached the bathroom. Nanoha contemplated simply going back to sleep, but Fate would only wake her again. She sighed, caressed Vivio's hair for a moment and stood up, following Fate.
"I hope for you that this is urgent, Fate-chan," she threatened her friend after the door had been closed behind her. "It's your fault if I fall asleep during training tomorrow!"
Fate remained unimpressed and crossed her arms. "Vivio and I had a little talk today," she said, ignoring Nanohas complaint.
"I know," Nanoha replied and shrugged. "You were spoiling her again." She pouted. "Without me!"
"This is serious, Nanoha!" Fate chided her best friend. "Vivio and I talked about her slipping and falling today. She asked me if you were mad at her because you didn't help her and wanted her to stand up on her own."
Nanoha was thunderstruck. Just when she wanted to shout "What!" Fate put her hand over the other girl's mouth.
"Be quiet!" Fate hissed. "Vivio could still hear us!"
"Why would she think that?" Nanoha asked clearly horrified.
"Nanoha, think!" Fate sighed. "Vivio just lost her mother and has been wandering around in an unfamiliar place for god knows how long. Then you came along and were the first one who showed her kindness, and she grew fond of you. And then after you told her that you would be her mother, you suddenly say that she is on her own again and you will not help her. I know you didn't mean that, but that's what she heard."
"But...," Nanoha whispered and balled her fists. "I just wanted her to realize what she is capable of, to raise her self-confidence! Why is that wrong?" She looked at Fate indignantly. "Why am I suddenly a bad parent?"
"Stop this!" Fate interrupted her, grabbed Nanohas wrists and looked directly into her friend's flashing eyes. Fate hated this kind of expression on Nanohas face, because she knew that behind the anger the other girl was doubting herself. Nanoha was the one mainly responsible for Fate now being happy in her life after all her mother had put her through. That's why Fate had always hated seeing Nanoha unhappy. "You aren't a bad mother, Nanoha, don't you dare saying that! You want Vivio to become strong so that she can look after herself, o.k., there's nothing wrong with that. It's just a little too soon for that, that's all."
For another moment Nanoha kept glaring at her, but suddenly all the anger vanished. "But what I wanted wasn't what she needed," she muttered. "You helped her standing up, Fate-chan. You told me that she was still too young." She took a deep breath. "You were right. I'm sorry."
"Nanoha..." Fate embraced her friend. "I may know a little better what Vivio wants, because she is very much like I was," she told the other girl while rubbing her back. Despite all the training the other girl's body was very soft... she forced herself to continue: "You always had a loving family. Maybe they didn't always understand you, but you just don't know the feeling of losing the most important person in your life, of being alone. After Precia had disappeared with Alicia, the only reason I didn't simply collapse was because you had promised me that we would stay friends and that we would meet again. Yes, there was Lindy, who really cared about me, but I don't know if I would be here today, if I hadn't had your friendship."
"I should have listened to you, Fate-chan," Nanoha said and embraced Fate, pulling her best friend closer. "I really thought I was doing the right thing, but..."
"Nanoha!" Fate interrupted her and pushed the other girl at arms length. "Would you just stop running yourself down," she ordered her friend, yet she smiled at Nanoha. "You were right, you know? I probably won't be able to be strict with Vivio, she's just too cute. I'll probably spoil her rotten if you don't keep her in check. It's just, right now Vivio is getting close to us. She has just had this great loss in her life and needs all the love and care she can get." Fate put her hand on Nanohas cheek and stroked it gently. This felt so... nice. "There's nothing wrong with being a little stern now and then. You just need to convince Vivio, that you being strict doesn't mean you are gonna leave her, then everything should be alright."
Nanoha looked at her with this intense expression. "Fate-chan, do you think we can do this?" she asked and placed her hand upon Fate's heart. "Do you think we can be Vivio's mothers?"
Fate's heartbeat accelerated. The slightly vulnerable glance in her eyes, the soft voice, the gentle touch... why was it that Nanoha, her very best friend since childhood, always managed to awaken these... feelings in her, when she thought that they had vanished? And at such an unfitting time on top of that. She swallowed.
"Yes, I do. You are such a caring and kind person, Nanoha. If you show that to Vivio more often, she won't doubt that you just want the best for her. Don't doubt yourself."
"Thank you, Fate-chan."
These whispered words sent shudders through Fate's body. She pushed Nanoha's hand away from her chest immediately before the auburn-haired girl could feel her heartbeat getting even faster. Whatever.. feelings she had for the other girl, this definitely wasn't the time and place to think about, let alone act on them. Yet when Nanoha suddenly moved her head closer and gave her a light kiss on the cheek, she couldn't help but gasp.
"You are the best friend I can imagine, Fate-chan," Nanoha said in this tender voice that made it hard for Fate not to moan. "And the best godmother Vivio could wish for. I'll do what you say. But now we should go to sleep again. Your heart was pounding so hard, you must be pretty exhausted if it has to work so hard to keep you awake. Good night, Fate-chan."
"Hai," Fate breathed while she watched Nanoha leave the bathroom. "Good night, Nanoha." She was relieved about Nanoha's misinterpretation of her heartbeat. Fate had always known that her feelings for her best friend were strong, really strong... but maybe... it was time to think about how strong they really were. Maybe Vivio's entrance in their lives would change Fate's life even further than it already had...
Fate shook her head and took a deep breath. Maybe, maybe not. Right now there were more pressing matters at hand, Vivio, training, Relics... and besides, she mused, when she went to bed again and looked at Nanoha cradling Vivio – their daughter! – life wasn't so bad right now either.
In the first version of this chapter Nanoha was quite whiny - I think it's better this way, though I didn't change that much.