A/N: Due the really low count of RoF fiction, I decided to take a seat in front of my laptop and type out a contribution to it. Although I haven't finished the game, I'm still at Chapter 14, I am loving the Zephyr/Leanne implied actions that's happening around them. They're quite possibly one of my top couples now, regardless of the age-and besides, 4 years is nothing! Anyway, this is my first Resonance of Fate fiction so critique is all welcome.
DISCLAIMER: I DON'T OWN ANYTHING BUT THE COPY OF THE GAME.
She wasn't used to it. The feeling that had been building up inside her after that tiny incident was slowly eating her up. She saw him fight Lagerfled, the Cardinal that had intruded in their peaceful home; she knew how he is. Zephyr does not go down without a fight; and like she had expected of the boy, he fought valiantly. Against his past, against his sins and guilt; a few meters away from where she stood alone, she watched him dance with bullets finally ending his torment. Or so she had prayed.
But the boy fell, shoved to the ground after looking at a piece of parchment. Lagerfled had stuck out the marker in his hand, ready to stab it right through him. Her feet automatically pull her to the bridge, not minding the reminders of the hunter and guardian that took them in. Sure, Zephyr's troubles are his and his to figure out—but he doesn't have to do it alone! Her thoughts began to scream, along with phrases of 'get up!', 'fight him!', and 'don't die, Zephyr!' on the few short seconds before the marker plants to his chest, she pulls the trigger.
Ending the ex-Cardinal's struggle and grief.
"Leanne," the boy in her thoughts smirks at her, "Stop spacing out."
She grips her handguns, focusing back on the small obstacles in their way to another delivery. Odd jobs were the PMF's specialty nowadays, after all. It wouldn't do good if they got beat because of her, she would have to beg for Vashyron to allow her to wield a gun again, and Zephyr... Zephyr wouldn't let her near the object again if he has his way. He was against the idea in the first place, all to protective about her. She leaps up in the air, does long twirls and somersaults to dodge the on-coming bullets, and then raining down on the enemies with one fell swoop, ending the battle quickly.
Back in Sweet Home, Leanne sat at the couch—the one that uses it for sleeping duty is out at the local bar for the meantime—her thoughts began to brew stronger than the sweet chocolate in her cup. She had wanted to ask him so many things, right after the death of Lagerfled… Zephyr… he—there was a noticeable change. She knows it wasn't just her imagination, or her hallucinations; the sulking had gone to a bare minimum of almost none per month and the boy even smiles now. This, however, started to brew light fluttery sensations in her stomach which she decided wasn't a good sign. Little did she realize, he had her changing, too: it began when Zephyr does this weird thing she calls 'smiling' and her breath gets stuck to her throat, her face would heat up and lastly, she'd be mimicking that smile, tongue-tied.
She crumples the folds of her skirt; was she scared? She didn't want to accept that, nor think it—she had said it at the Seminary, she didn't want to hate Zephyr. But here she was trying to avoid him at all cost, fear had struck her core and she can't bear to look at him without feeling twitchy nervous. She had planned to ask Vashyron about it, or consult him on how to face her savoir; yet, even talking about the younger man gets her mumbling her speech.
Was she that afraid of him?
"Well, well, well ain't someone hogging all of the hot chocolate again?"
Her eyes widen, and she swivels to look at the new presence in the room with her. Normally, she would have groaned and ordered him to get the chocolate himself, but one look at his face and she starts to tremble. It was only Zephyr, only him, her best friend; how dare she feel self-conscious about a guy she's been living in with for almost a year now? Self-consciousness might not even be what she's feeling; if it were, it should have kicked in on the first month, not now!
She did a rather awkward thing: thrust her half-filled cup towards him and avoids his gaze. He takes it, a taken aback; usually, Leanne would have nagged at him to get his own cup, if not, she would have made him his while he lounges about at Vashyron's couch. He didn't expect her to turn tail and run to her room.
Leanne drops to the floor, back against the door of her room. Her head and hands were closely touch her knees, her breathing erratic as she groans about not being able to face him. What the hell was wrong with her? She had known about the accident at Crank Seminary, even defended him. Why couldn't she face him now? Vashyron had made it clear—it was all in the past, and Zephyr had no apparent control over his actions then. It was in the purest form an accident. She sighs, and hits her head on to the door.
If you hadn't been there, I'd be dead. Isn't that enough?
He never spoke after that, a part of her had told her to say it; the things she had been thinking, silently thankful for saving her. It was her turn to save him, that time; her turn to change the way he thought. It was selfish of her, to ask him to live his life for her—to continue living riddled in guilt just for her. She never heard him answer, much like Zephyr would be. Vashyron had better luck making him talk about his past and things connected to it. Was it enough, would it have been enough—was she enough to be his reason to live?
Amidst the heaviness of his burden, would she have been enough?
"Leanne, I have your hot chocolate. Let me in."
She slams a fist to the door; here he is, holding a new cup of sweet liquid coercing her to open her door. Here was the boy that had been eating her for the past few days: Zephyr stood outside her door, head resting over the cold surface and on his hand a cup of her chocolate. He felt something was off, something had always been up with Leanne and him—she didn't like him sulking, or brooding for that matter, but after she had learned of his past she never complained. She understood, what more is she gave him his answer. Why am I even alive?
Coming from Leanne, from the girl that had him running along the streets of Chandelier, pushing the crowds and freefalling through Basel; somehow he couldn't help himself, it was as if what she said was true. That he should live, he is needed; which is why he had said he only wanted her happy, because at that brief moment of shock and overwhelming struggle between his conscience, he felt happy.
She needed him then, she still needs him.
"Hey, stop acting like a brat and open the door, I'm coming in whether you like—"
"—Zephyr." He presses his ears to the door, "I'm sorry. I have been… acting strange, sorry…"
"Hey would you just open the door? Stop saying 'sorry', you didn't do anything wrong, stupid."
The door didn't budge.
She sighs, "Just… go away."
Zephyr shrugs, and downs her supposed drink; she had wanted time alone, and he's the best person to understand how that feels. All she needs right now is space, and who was he to deny her of that? He didn't know how to be of help when she wouldn't even face him. Although, honestly, he missed having her buzzing about and telling him off with more than a few smacks to the head; he missed having her around him, and actually talking. He could see it in her eyes, the slight gleam that etched worry and fear—the last thing he wanted was to make her feel scared.
"Alright. Fine. I'll leave, just answer me this."
"Since when did you start sulking, it doesn't suit you, y'know? Where's my Leanne?"
"Your Leanne?" the door opens too, along with her outraged expression. The door hits him on the face, sending him a few steps back, a hand pressed to the ache on his face. Her angered eyes soften to worry, as she rushes up to him, inspecting the bruise she inflicted. Her lithe hands tapping away his calloused ones, and ran her fingers across the spot.
"You could have warned me you're opening the door!" he hisses.
She pressed on the spot hard, earning a groan from him: "Why were you even standing that near! It was your fault; it's my room and my door. I can open and close it any time I want to. Ugh, Zephyr, really!"
He laughs. In the brink of her worry, he laughs at her. She quickly sends another smack to his head; she bites her lip in frustration. She had been contemplating about serious matters in her head, had her running in circles all because of her selfish request for him. She didn't want to ask him to do any more; he smiles down at her threatening eyes, finding amusement in her fury.
"Finally!" he breathes out, "there's the flat-boarded woman I know."
She had winded her arm for another slap; he catches it by her wrist. His icy blue eyes stare down at her contact covered ones; he had missed Leanne's scolding, but what he did enjoy quite recently, is her flustered state whenever he's near. He didn't know how that happened, but he liked seeing her all red and nervous around him—Vashyron was right, Leanne did look cuter now.
She pulls her wrists away and slams the door shut, "Go away!"
"What's eating you?"
She swivels her head to see Vashyron settling down next to her, "Nothing… I was just thinking." She sighs, and was about to take her leave. It's been 2 weeks and she was still avoiding Zephyr like the new age plague of human society. Of course, the veteran hunter noticed—he was just waiting for the right time to sneak up on her and get her talking. She does love to keep to herself nowadays instead of egging around the brooder; she obviously started to feel something more for.
"Nah, none of that now, tell dear Daddy Vashyron what's wrong," Leanne smiles at him helpless; if she had to talk about this, she'd rather tell it to him than Zephyr himself. "Something about Zephyr, am I right?"
She nods quietly.
"What got you so bundled up you can't even tell him straight, that's not the Leanne I know." He chuckles, "You and Zephyr used to be inseparable; now you're asking for separate missions and jobs, you got him worried, I mean it, kid, you got him shitting his pants always wanting to check on you and trail you in your jobs. Even I'm getting the urge to super-glue him to you." His voice radiates irritation, and all she did was to laugh. Seeing the man's annoyed look and (most of all) knowing that the younger blonde had been worried about her got her smiling brightly.
"You are going to do something about it," he says grumpy, "talk this out, whatever it is. I can't have the dynamic of my group messed up just because you have something against him. Fix it."
"What? Why! I think this is just fine! I've gotten a hang of things already, I can handle it!"
He chuckles, lightly ruffling her blonde dyed locks; he had a look of knowing plastered across his grin and hinted his brow upward to where Zephyr was still sleeping. "He's stubborn kid. You both are, but Zephyr's… well, Zephyr. If you're not happy about something, tell him."
Vashyron gets up, headed towards the exit of Sweet Home; another solo mission commissioned by one of the Cardinals, an escort mission from Cardinal Theresa. Her eyes followed his tall figure until he stops at the door frame, "He only wants you to be happy—"she stands up, feet stomping off to the staircase"—I did what I can."
"Zephyr! Zephyr! Hey! Are you sleeping? It's noon! Wake up!" she bangs on his door.
This time, she was going to tell him. Tell him what, is what currently starts to haywire her brain as she just focused on putting out the courage to face him. This is not going to end well, she concludes when he opens the door with a half-glazed look with his loose night shirt and training pants. He could barely make out her figure, but there's only one girl living with him that would wake him up. Only one girl in Sweet Home, in fact.
"What?" He leans on the door frame.
Nothing but silence. She nearly turned tail and ran, but the natural blonde and icy blue eyes that the boy before her displayed was more than enough eye-candy to keep her glued to the floor. She had her mouth gaping holes, what the hell was she going to say? The problem she had pushed thinking that Zephyr wouldn't open the door began to circle around her—to make it worse, she had to titter there under his gaze, which only made her fidget more.
He feels her forehead, and then softly cups her reddening face; the silence still drowning out their noise. He leans his face closer to hers. "You don't look sick and your temp's alright. What's wrong?" he crosses his arms over his chest and leaned on the open door.
"Nothing… er… well… something, but… it's not something I can—" Leanne, breathe. "—can I talk to you?"
He laughs, "This isn't talking?"
"After Lagerfled died, I said some things… and—"
The air around became tight and stifling, the jocular atmosphere face of the boy began to go sullen and dark. This topic had been the only sole cause of his sulking, and then after, Leanne would always be the one making him smile again. What Zephyr didn't understand is why bring it up now, why open the healing wound now? Maybe Leanne wanted to say something, maybe she wanted to say that a murderer like him could not possibly make her happy—that he had no right to. He lost his smile within the thoughts; she instantly felt guilty.
With his eyes covered with his bangs, he sighs, "Are you happy, Leanne?"
Her head jolts upwards, eyes wide as saucers; Zephyr had a small kind small on his face, he looked nothing like the boy she had grown accustomed to hitting for the perverted remarks. He was different, the air around him was light, and the more she stares at him—the more she didn't want to say anything about their current situation.
"Er… The heck with that question! Of course I'm happy!" She throws her arms around his neck, and hugged him with no apparent plans to let go. "But… you, you have to be happy, too. Okay?"
A small chuckle escapes him, how was he going to say that he already is happy? That just being with her, and seeing her glow like the sun already made it enough? His reason to live and reason to smile… they were slowly merging together and not even in his own mind did he want to part with it. If anything, he had thought Leanne deserved someone better.
He flicked her forehead, "You're such an idiot." She pulls back; he smirks at her, "I'll be happy when you finally grow that rack of yours."
All of the dramatic build up was for nothing. She winding back and slapped him across the face; he mutters a 'worth it, worth it!' under his voice and kept smiling at her flustered face. He might have ruined the moment, but he alwaysliked seeing her this cute. She groans and pushes him away with a huff.