Disclaimer: I do not own the Dragon Quest Series in any way, shape, or form!

Days of Hope

Reoh walked down the streets of Stornway, just returning from another long expedition into yet another grotto. Exploring grottos with his small group had become normal ever since he defeated Corvus and saved the world. Having eaten the final fygg and he could now see through Celestian eyes once again, he had been able to travel to places he couldn't travel before and spot grottos a lot easier as well. He was planning to rest up at Quester's Rest Inn before heading out again. He thought it'd be good to see Erinn again.

Behind him were his three companions.

The first was a big, burly man by the name of Frederick. He had a big red beard, black eyes, a vikings cap, heavy armor, and a Maxi Axe. He was a gladiator and he had the highest stamina level of the entire group with powerful attacks to match.

The second was a young, thin, and tough young lady by the name of Tanya, Tani for short. She was a martial artist with a long redish kung fu outfit, black hair, green eyes, and no weapon. Yep, she was a fisticuffs fighter who was the team's hardest and fastest hitter and she knew it all too well.

The third was a young girl with blonde hair and blue eyes. She wore a white and blue robe, a circlet, and held in her hands a Shining Staff. She was Alya, the team's master priest. While not the strongest or fastest of the group, she was very necessary to the survival of the team as a whole. Reoh knew that without her healing abilities there would've been no surviving the battle with Corvus.

Reoh was wearing his Celestrian outfit, currently in possession of the most powerful weapon in the world, the Hypernova Sword. He had gotten out of many scraps with that thing. He was currently acting as a ministrel but had mastered the abilities of a warrior and a thief before hand. He had thought about mastering some Mage abilities but decided against it.

They continued walking through the streets away from the Church when some ran up beside him. It was Alya.

"So where we going Reoh?" she asked, cheerful as always.

"Quester's Rest so we can, er... rest."

"Really? So we're not going there just so you can see Erinn?" she asked. The question surprised Reoh and caught him heavily off-guard.

"What? Well, I was going to say 'hi' to her but-"

"Say no more, laddy!" that was Frederick, stepping up to the other side of Reoh. "We know you don't just want to say 'hi' to her."

"Eh? What do you-"

"He's right you know," said Tani as she, too, joined in the conversation. "We know you like her."

"Well, yeah, she's my friend. The first mortal friend I've ever had."

His companions rolled their eyes. They knew what he was trying to do but he wasn't getting off that easily. Alya chuckled, "Not that type of like. We mean like her- you know?- as in you want to date her."

Reoh suddenly turned bright red and his companions knew they had him right where they wanted him. Reoh tried to deny it, "Wh-what...b-but I...I don't...don't...k-know wh-what...y-you're...t-talking...a-about..."

...and faild miserably.

They laughed and he bowed his head to hide his embarrassment. Suddenly, he felt an arm around his head as Tani pushed her way in between himself and Alya, "Don't worry, Reoh, we're going to help you get together with her."

Reoh turned bright red as he attempted to jump back in surprise, but attempting to jump from the grasp of the strongest person in the party was a pretty bold but stupid move. Reoh stuttered, "W-wh-what?"

"We're going to get you and Erinn together," Tani repeated as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.

"Yeah, I think you two would make a cute couple!" Alya practically shouted which drew some unwanted attention which in turn embarrassed Reoh even more.

"I-I don't know i-if I-I can d-do it..." he said pathetically which was returned by a disbelieving stare at him by his companions.

"You've crossed the entire world in a golden, flying train, fought unimaginable monsters, been to the Realm of the Almighty, saved the world and you don't think you can confess your love to a young girl that's probably your age and shares your feelings?" Tani asked. But it was three words that rang in Reoh's head.

Confess your love...

"L-l-love..." he mumbled quietly, but Tani heard him.

"Yes, you do love her don't you?"

He lowered his head so that his hair covered his eyes. He was redder than a tomato.

"I'll take that as a 'yes'," Tanya smirked.

"Come on, let's go to the Quester's Rest!" Alya shouted as she pushed the startled hero forward towards the inn. The other two members of the party laughed before catching up.

Erinn sat on a stoll in front of the check-in table at the Quester's Rest. She sighed dreamily as her head went off into the clouds. She was thinking about Reoh. She liked...no, loved him very much. Patty would often tease her about it, but she didn't care.

She was snapped out of her dream land when Patty came over and spoke to her.

"Hey Erinn," Patty said.

"What is it? I was thinking!" Erinn didn't like being driven out of her dreams of her with Reoh and Patty knew that. But that never stopped her.

"Thinking about who? Reoh?" Patty smirked.

"Yeah, so?"

"Just wondering," Patty said. As Erinn turned her attention back to her book however... "Speaking of Reoh, I just saw him, Fred, Tani, and Alya walking over this way."

Erinn's head suddenly shot up. Her eyes were big and her face was red. While she had no problem admitting she was in love with Reoh to other people, telling Reoh directly was an entirely different matter. Erinn tried to smile, "Is he now?"

The tone was soft, almost unnoticable if you weren't listening. Patty frowned, "Come on, girl, you can confess to him! It can't possibly be that hard!"

Erinn's face went from embarrassed to enraged in an instant, but she managed to keep her tone under control, "You've never been in love before."

"Eh, point taken," Patty shrugged. "But you still got to tell him, and soon."

"Eh? Why?"

"Because you know how many people that kid's probably helped? Tons! And a few of them are probably girls your age. Not to mention he's got companions the same age or a little older than he is. You've got to beat them to the punch or they'll steal him right from under you."

The thought of Reoh with another girl scared Erinn very much. She didn't like the idea, not one bit. Suddenly, there was a rustled at the door and Reoh himself entered with his three companions. If you paid attention enough, you could see the priest pushing him towards the counter with Reoh, silently now, trying to beg her to stop. Before he knew it, he was standing in front of Erinn, who was sitting behind the counter. When Reoh and Erinn's eyes met, they both immediately blushed hard due to the conversations they had just had with their respective companions. Erinn spoke first. It took effort on her part but she got it out without sounding nervous, "Hi, Reoh! What can I do for you?"

Reoh was just as successful on his speech, "I'm fine. I'd like a few rooms please."

"You brought all three of your friends so that'll be 12 gold coins."

Reoh handed her the money and Erinn deposited it. They smiled at each other and Erinn walked out from behind the counter, "I'll show you to your rooms now."

Patty and Reoh's companions shared knowing glances before they followed Erinn and Reoh. Patty watched the counter while her boss was away. It didn't take them long before they reached their rooms. Erinn handed them the keys and smiled, "Enjoy your stay."

Before she got a chance to leave, however, Tani stepped forward, "Hey Reoh, we were thinking about going downstairs to have some food and drink. Wanna come?"

Reoh shook his head, "Nah, I think I'll just relax in my room."

Tani shrugged, "Suit yourself."

As the trio walked off, Erinn took this as her chance. She turned to Reoh, "Mind if I join you for a bit?"

They both blushed at the words but Reoh answered, "Sure."

Unknown to both of them, Reoh's companions hide around the corner and smirked as Reoh and Erinn both entered the room.

Erinn sat next to Reoh on the bed. Both of them were bright red and silent. The awkward silence was killing them. Erinn was the first to speak, "So, how are your adventures so far?"

Reoh tried to smile, "Good, we've been fighting tougher and tougher monsters in the grottos recently. I think if we went back to our first couple of grottos we'd probably annihilate them."

Erinn giggled, "I don't doubt that."

Another awkward silence fell upon them again.

"You've changed so much since I found you after you fell off the waterfall. I hardly recognize you as the same person I met all that time ago."

"Have I really changed that much?" Reoh asked looking at her.

"Yeah, kind of."

"You don't think I'm the same person anymore... do you?"

Erinn looked at him, "Of course your the same person! No matter how much you changed you'll always be Reoh to me!"

"Thanks, you're a true friend."

"You're much more than a friend to me!"

"I am?"

Erinn suddenly turned bright red. She hadn't realized she had said that out loud. Reoh looked at her, "Erinn...what am I to you?"

Erinn's heart was pounding. Never had she more nervous of the outcome of something. She was even more nervous than she was when she first met the staff of the Quester's Rest. She slowly turned to face to look directly at him. His face was very handsome and she blushed just looking at him. He quietly spoke to her, "Erinn?"

Erinn shut her eyes tight as she began to slowly drip tears from her eyes.

"Come on, you can do this! You can do this!" She thought to herself. She tried to speak but no words came out. She was losing her chance.

"Erinn? Are you-" he never got to finish. As soon as he spoke, she launched herself forward putting her hands on his face so that he was forced looked straight at her eyes... as she quickly touched her lips against his.

Reoh's eyes widened. He couldn't moved. He was surprised and shocked. Soon, however, she slowly started to look away, but before she could Reoh threw his arms around her neck and pulled her close to him. They were kissing, very passionately. Now it was Erinn's turn to widened her eyes, but soon, they closed as she pressed her lips further against his. Everything was perfect...

Well, everything was perfect until the door suddenly flew open revealing four people standing there, smiling a smile that reached to either end of their faces. The two love birds suddenly lurched up, surprised and extremely embarassed. When they finally could see who was at the door, their embarassment sky-rocketed. Standing in outside the doorway was Tanya, Patty, Alya, and Frederick. The duo's heads sunk beneath their shoulders. And the following comments didn't make matters any better.

"Aw!" Alya said as her eyes began to sparkle anime-style. "You too look so cute together!"

"Looks like you two got together all by yourselves!" Frederick chuckled.

"It's about time, Erinn!" Patty called.

"See, Reoh! Was that so hard?" Tanya smiled as she proved she was right...again.

All four of them began to laugh out right. Reoh and Erinn looked at eachother, smiled, and then joined in the laughing as their fingers intertwined with eachother.

Yep, life was definately good.

Well, done and done! I hope you all like this fanfiction. I've recently played Dragonquest IX and I thought it was pretty fun. I hope you all enjoyed the story.

By the way, who noticed that Reoh's name is an anagram of 'hero'? I wonder who did right off the bat? Anyway, please review!