Another Day, More Embarrassment

A/N: The things I come up with at eleven at night... Welp! Here it is! I am in fact still alive just I can never come up with ideas, so... :) Oh! And I wrote an action sequence! Any comments? Also! Don't judge me for what's at the end! I feel more awkward than you! Thank you to the awesome iTii/Kii-toes/Lin-Tii-Chan/Titoes or whatever she calls herself on this website. Check out her APH fics, really! :)

Title: Another Day, More Embarrassment

Characters: Serah Farron, Noel Kreiss, Mentions of Lightning

Word Count:

Rating: T for awkward moments. Oh, and you shouldn't be playing if you're not a teenager. :D

Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters, concepts, areas or the videogame mentioned. They belong to the respective areas of Square Enix that thought them up. :) By lord though I wish I did. Why do I have to wait until February until I can get my hands on a copy?

Pairing(s): Implied Serah/Noel, don't like, don't read. Simple as!

Summary: Noel got chucked into a wall by a giant. That's gotta hurt, right? What happens when Serah notices...

Beta'd: Yep!

Warning: The game actually hasn't been released yet, so this is going on the trailers. So no spoilers (unless this turns out canon *doubtful*) but the characters might be OOC if the game is released by the time anyone reads this. Based off of a scene from the PAX trailer.

Also, most likely rather weird. My head works that way.

"Wow, so this is what Cocoon looks like from the inside!"

"Oh, I forgot, this is your first time here."

A man with unruly brown hair nodded at a slender young woman with pink hair in a long, curly side-ponytail. They both appeared from seemingly nowhere, but those two knew better than that. They were travelling across time, solving paradoxes intending to save the ruined future and to look for the girl's sister.

They both walked further down the corridor, and ended up in a sandstone area teeming with soldiers, known as the Bresha Ruins. This section was arranged in a square, yellow brick buildings lining the outskirts, all with supporting scaffolding. A real ghost town. There was a gaping hole in the middle of this area, but neither of the two could see what was in it.
"Look, there's Pulse above us." The pinkette pointed up, to the natural wonder beneath the spherical world they stood in.
"Oh, yeah!" The brunet smirked.

Soldiers were patrolling the area. Everything was quiet. In fact, even the two new arrivals were left unnoticed. Then the ground quaked. A huge hand, buried in the gaping hole in the middle of the surveillance area, bound with rope, was stirring. It rose, swiping one of the scaffolding areas, injuring several soldiers. The rest opened gunfire. An ominous shape rose, supported by that hand, and mere bullets couldn't stop it. Obviously, it didn't belong.

"An arm?" The girl, Serah, asked with a worried face. The Moogle that had followed them, Mog, answered with a simple "Kupo?".

The young man had a much better answer, albeit sarcastic. "Yeah, and not looking to shake hands, I'm guessing." He already had his swords out, angrily staring upon the invisible shape he could somewhat make out.

The hand moved back, made a fist, and punched the blue-clad male in the stomach, sending him flying and hitting the wall. It winded him, and he fell motionless to the floor, dropping both swords. His body slumped onto the ground.

"Noel!" Serah ran forwards, Mog disappearing in a poof of smoke, then reappeared as a bow and arrow. Serah jumped, grabbed it. Kneeling down, aim transfixed on the offending arm ready to release the tension on the bow, until Noel got up and grabbed his blades.

Now, they engaged in battle.

Starting off in a 'Slash and Burn' setup, Serah fired Fire spells continually at the arm as often as her stamina would allow it while Noel attacked in combos of three Ruin spells, dealing further damage. The fire spells didn't affect the Paradox Alpha as much in pain, but continually weakened him. As the floating arm readied another punch, Noel switched to a more defensive role, and took most of that damage without breaking a sweat.

Serah decided to keep on healing even after Noel started attacking again, because quite frankly she got worried very easily. Eventually the fist slammed into the ground, making a shock-wave damaging both Serah and Noel severely.

"You ok?" Noel looked at the archer. He was answered with a nod. After checking his friend was OK, he ran up onto the fingers of the outstretched hand, not yet lifted after the attack. The hand was raised and Noel fought for balance. The giant, noticing the intruder, started to clench the fist. The boy however was too fast. Feeling like stepping out into the unknown, ran up the arm, jumped and slammed both swords into the face of the invisible menace.

Rolling upon contact with the ground, Noel grinned at Serah then looked back at the Paradox. "An invisible giant!"

Alpha was on its last legs here. With a few more Fire spells, Serah resorted to firing arrows at it to attempt to finish it off. And at last, the giant fell.

"That, was tiring... Phew..." Noel put his hands on his knees and bent over, panting.

"At least it's over now." Serah wiped her forehead, and caught Mog after it transformed.

"Good point there, Serah."

A few hours later, after resolving a few anomalies and killing some monsters, they ended up back on the Archlyte Steppe, the green expanse filling most of Gran Pulse. The skies were still bright, even though sunset was approaching. Serah caught sight of a few Chocobos, so the two decided to ride one to find some shelter. Noel, having never seen a real life Chocobo, only hearing stories was amazed at how big they were. Serah said they were really small when they were little though, thinking about Sazh's son Dajh as she said, smiling to herself.

Then her thoughts strayed to Noel, as cocky and carefree as he was, he did give her the chills sometimes. How did he find her? Especially just when she needed a saviour. Some people might have called it 'fate' or something equally soppy. Serah knew better. Her dear sister, and her companions, one her missing fiancé, had defied fate before, and that was a good enough excuse for her that a fate, be it called a Focus or anything else, did not truly exist. How could Noel act so happy one minute, and deathly serious the next? He said it himself before, "Humans aren't strong, they die easy." so how can he laugh off death's gaze so well?

In fact, even though he hid things well, he didn't know Serah noticed him limping slightly when he thought she wasn't looking, and took longer than usual to get his breath back, or even that he wasn't dodging as fast as usual. Serah worries a lot, and worries badly. When she was in crystal statis, she worried. When Lightning disappeared, she was worried. So now Noel was hurt, she worried more. She knew when they set down for the night she had to help; she was the only one with access to 'Cure' spells in their little party, so she took it upon herself to ensure her reckless friend was OK.

Their journey with their feathered companions ended soon. They ended up at the greener area of the Steppe, where the air really was bright green, and found a dry cavern that wasn't inhabited by Flandagora, or wolves. The slime from the Flan let out a putrid over, and had managed to poison Serah on more than one occasion. Noel stood up almost as soon as they had sat down to get some firewood, but Serah pushed him back down into a sitting position, causing him to wince.

"And what was that for?"

"You're staying. I'll go get firewood." Her reply was short, stiff. She knew he needed to rest, and saying too much would just make him more stressed. The dim cave would be pitch-black in a matter of a few hours. Night on Pulse never lasted for more than five hours, an absurd thought to those on Cocoon who came down here. Nightstalking beasts were more ferocious than daywalking ones, but shied away from light sources. The sun was setting, leaving pink, amber and yellow trails across the clear blue sky.

"But I want to go get it. There's loads of monsters you don't even know about out there!" Noel moaned. He was very stubborn about the trivial things. But he really just didn't like the idea of Serah going out just before dark.

"You're staying here. No argument, Noel. Women know what's best, and my intuition is saying I'm going to get firewood, okay?" Serah smiled and walked into the wilds.

Noel stayed in the cave, crossed his arms and sulked.

She came back just as the sky was about to dim completely, and arranged the sticks in a mud circle Noel must have made while she was gone. She moved the stones she had gathered around it, and a weak Fire spell got it working.

"Still sulking? Come on, it wasn't that bad, waiting, was it?" Serah queried, smiling in an attempt to lighten the mood. No such luck.

Noel was silent, pouting.

A normal overlooker would see this as Noel simply ignoring Serah. He wasn't though. He was trying not to groan from the injuries he had sustained. One had probably got infected, he assumed, as nothing could throb that much in his side. Unfortunately for him, Serah's all-seeing eyes could read this bluff.

She folded her arms, dragged him into a standing position with her and looked him over. She clicked her fingers and a blue hue enveloped them. Noel looked bemused.

"What do you need that for? I told you them monsters were tough. Go on and heal yourself if you need to." Noel closed his eyes and grinned.

"Oh no, it's not for me, Noel. I'm quite fine." She still stood there, thinking.

"Then for who? Mog-"

"It's for you!" Serah interuppted him, grabbed his forearm and yanked it foreward. Noel grunted in complaint, his shoulder twinging from pain. She put her hand over his shoulder, and the magic sunk in, knitting the torn muscle together. She smiled, happy with her work and let his arm go.

Flexing his arm, amazed at the sudden repair, Noel asked, "How did you know?"

"Call it what you will, it was written all over your face."

"Really? Man, I was hoping you wouldn't see..." Noel bent over a bit in exaggeratted depression, but stopped when he clutched his side in agony. "Ggghh... Forgot... About that one..." He straightened first his back, then his face. "Thanks. I'll be off to sleep now, we've got a long day ahead of us."

Serah wasn't having any of it. She got hold of the back of his very messy hair, tugging it backwards slightly. He stopped walking with a yelp. "What is it now, Serah?"



"Your shirt."

"I need to see the wound, Noel. It could be infected."
"Your side? You've hurt it, I know you have. Now get it off like I said, before I have to cast Stop on you and take it off myself."

Noel went bright red at the thought and started fumbling around with his shirt, still not doing anything until his eyes caught sight of the light blue fabric that functioned as a belt and started fiddling with it, not looking Serah in the eye.

"Noel." She put her hands on her hips. Noel looked back, scratched the back of his head then shook his head.

"No really, you don't need to worry."

"How do you take it off? Buttons? Don't tell me you don't know how to undo buttons?"
"I- I do! Of course, what do you take me for Serah?" He blushed more, if that was even possible, then added, "It's er... a zipper... at the front." He gestured to the yellow trim that ran down the middle of his shirt.

"Fair enough. Do I have to, or will you humour me?"
"Turn around first."

Noel never really was good with people, probably due to the fact he could never get particularly close to people, for fear they would disappear, like his friends did in his time.

He carefully removed his shirt, folding it surprisingly neatly, then putting it back on the floor.

"You can turn around now?" His voice cracked a bit at the end, making the statement a question. Serah spun round, then she raised a hand to her mouth, eyebrows going up.
"Noel... That's a lot of scars..."

"I thought you said you wouldn't look!"
"It's hard not to!" Serah, sadly couldn't keep her eyes off of him. She could feel her eyes taking in that torso, and as bad as she felt like she was cheating on Snow a bit, she honestly couldn't help it.

She eventually regained her composure and looked at his left side where the nasty looking multicoloured bruise had formed, along with the dried blood which was crusting up a horrible slash mark. This would need some Esuna too. She told him to lie down on his back if he could, then she knelt down next to him and made the magic flowing from her fingertips soothe the horrible wound. It took a long time, the injury was deep, and infected, as she had feared. Noel looked to the ceiling the entire time, unsure of what exactly to do.

It was morning before Serah had finished. The sun had risen quickly, and she heard wyvern's calling. She peeked out of the side of the cavern to check where the Long Gui were, and to check the perimeter while Noel got his shirt on. He waltzed up behind her, taking her by surprise when he gave her a little kiss on the top of her head. He walked away, into the morning air, shrugged then turned around and said, "I heard that's what you do when you want to thank someone."

Before Serah could say anything in response, he ran off, both swords in hand, into the direction of Taejin's Tower.

"Did you just... kiss me?"

A/N: Oh Etro the awkwardness of writing this you have no idea... But it is, however, the longest thing I've written. So far. :) Sweet mother of Shiva, 5 pages? Surprised I haven't turned Cie'th...

Why Serah and Noel? Well, call it what you will, after seeing them trailers, and looking for fanart, and fanfiction, and listening to AMVs, it grew on me. Snow's just too much like a huge teddy bear in comparison to skinny little Serah, at least Noel's normal sized (even if he is the last guy on Earth, I mean Gran Pulse). I've probably written them out of character, but who cares! The game isn't out yet! I don't even know how awkward Noel will be around people, all I know is that he is 'cocky' but very 'serious' when he needs to be.

Any feedback? Much appreciated. This is a one shot, by the way.

PS: Sorry about the PE/T3B oneshot guys! No writing muse for it!