A/N: For those who wished for a Valentine's day oneshot for UlrikaxRoze, here it is! Although, it may not be what you expect, it still does have UlrikaxRoze. Anyways, it's late because I only just came up with it after Valentine's day rolled on by. The story doesn't have anything too excessive, so it's safe to read for all...I think.
"Ah, alright. I'll be there in a bit. Bye Chloe."
"Until then. See you, Ulrika."
Hanging up the phone, a girl with long blonde hair, Ulrika, turned away and paused before stretching her arms and flailing them excitedly.
"Ooohhhh I can't wait! It's finally here!" she squealed ecstatically. As she slipped on a pair of flats, the blonde made her way to the door grabbing an umbrella as she exited her home.
Glancing up, she frowned as she opened the umbrella. She didn't hate the rain, but sometimes it was just a hassle to deal with especially since she didn't own a car and walked the distances.
As Ulrika made her way down the streets in the city, she occasionally turned to look at the sides. Cafes, bakeries, restaurants, you name it. All of them were busy, for a certain special occasion. That special occasion was a certain holiday that remotely revolved around couples and their mutual loving company. To say this day meant anything to her was far from correct, rather, she had no one special to celebrate with. In her twenty years of being alive, she never once fell in love. Saying that she didn't wish for a partner was also far from the truth.
She wasn't jealous but perhaps minutely envious of the lingering stares and warm touches only given to that one person alone. The girl in no way was lonely, but a special someone to light up her life would be nice to have.
Ulrika smiled at the happy couples who seemed too engrossed with their lovers to even notice her bustling presence and nearly trailed the windows with her fingers. Brushing off her thoughts, she shrugged her shoulders and shook her head tearing away from her lingering stare. She withdrew her fingers to her side, where it should be, and continued on to her task. This day meant nothing to her. At least it shouldn't.
Around forty minutes later, the girl made her way to the other side of town. It was more desolate than the bustling city and wreaked with dark and depressing features. With the sky clouded gray and rain falling down, the scene only emphasized its gloominess. Not to mention the houses were practically ancient giving off a haunted vibe and a graveyard was located a block away, which to her dismay, she must pass by.
"Figures," she muttered. "Fits Chloe's taste perfectly." It always was a wonder how those two became friends. They were like day and night, her being day and Chloe being night. The scary part was that it wasn't just figurative thinking, but a very realistic description of the pair.
One more block away. The blonde gulped, mentally preparing herself to hurry and almost cursed herself when she nearly tripped over her own feet. Almost, but cursing was Chloe's deal. Not just your typical curses either. When Chloe did them, they get down to being just plain freaky. You'd mistake her for some religious creep or an occult fan, but Ulrika knew better. As her best friend, Ulrika knew Chloe better than anyone else in the world. But really, did she really have to live near a graveyard? The blonde girl shivered, shook her head and straightened up, muttering to herself again.
"Get a grip, Ulrika. Its midday. Ghosts only come out during the bewitching hour. Chloe said so." Although she tried to comfort herself, the fact that it came from Chloe meant it was nothing short of scary.
And yet, it didn't stop her from glancing into the graveyard beyond the tall black unlocked gate.
It was empty just like she predicted, which she wasn't quite sure if that made it worse. The fact that nothing was there as far as she could see or that she may be completely alone in a dark and haunting setting, with wide open gates welcoming her into the land of the dead.
Turning her attention ahead, Ulrika picked up her pace and left the vicinity as quickly as possible. Any minute longer and she might just burst into tears at the thought that a ghost would burst in front of her first.
It didn't take long before the scared girl finally reached her destination. Upon arriving at Chloe's doorstep, she fiercely banged on the door for her friend to open up. Chloe did, however, with a scowl plastered on her face, while muttering words such as 'loud' and 'incantations'. But seeing Ulrika's panicked face seemed to soften her mood. The brunette swung open the door and welcomed in the sputtering blonde.
"Thanks for the tea." Ulrika shivered as she reached for the cup in front of her. At some point during her run, Ulrika had forgotten to hold up her umbrella and broke into a sprint leaving her wet and dripping by the time of her arrival. A small sneeze came out just as she was about to drink it. Chloe sighed.
"Dry up or you'll get a cold," ordered Chloe softly as she handed Ulrika a towel. "The next time you show up like this on my doorstep, I'll have an incantation ready to expel you."
By incantations, she meant curses. To Ulrika, they were one and the like.
"I couldn't help it. I rushed over as quick as I could. This place scares the heeby jeebies out of me."
Ulrika sipped the tea and looked at it surprisingly. "Wow, this is good!"
Chloe shook her head and took a seat next to Ulrika.
Oh Ulrika...always the forgetful one. One moment she's scared for her life and the next she'd probably run to her doom if no one kept track of her.
"Thanks. I added a special ingredient this time," said Chloe.
"Really? What is it?" Asked Ulrika curiously before sheepishly adding, "W-wait, nevermind. I don't want to know."
Chloe frowned and closed her eyes taking a sip out of her own cup.
"It's safe. I didn't add anything weird this time. I mixed it with a bit of the chocolate you wanted."
Looking down at her cup, Ulrika's eyes lit up with surprise.
"If you ask me, that's still plenty weird. But I can make an exception for this. So my order came in?" She asked excitedly.
"Yeah. It's in the cupboard. I'll get it for you."
Ulrika could barely contain herself as she watched Chloe leave her seat and move into the kitchen. As Chloe reached out to the cupboard, she pulled it open to reveal two boxes of finely wrapped chocolate. The color and shine of the sheet covering the boxes screamed elaborate and refined, completely hooking Ulrika's attention.
"Chloe, I love you so much right now!" Ulrika squealed as Chloe came back with the chocolates in hand.
"That's not enough. If you really want to thank me then next time I have a request, you'll have no complaints and must obediently comply."
"Way to burst my bubble," mumbled Ulrika, but her eyes lit up again as Chloe waved the chocolates before her. Chloe smiled. Ulrika was too simple. It was too easy to manipulate her.
"Okay, okay. You win! Just hand it over already." With that, Chloe dropped them into the blonde's open arms. This is exactly why she loved Valentine's day.
"Thanks a lot! I can't wait to eat them. Alright, I'll be going back now."
"You're not going to stay for a while?" asked the brunette. The blond shook her head.
"Can't. If I don't leave soon, it will be too dark to see. Especially in your side of the city," grimaced Ulrika.
"You can stay over for tonight. I can prepare a room for you." Offered the brunette, but Ulrika shook her head once more.
"I have to get into the store early tomorrow. We're getting new shipments and I have to get them loaded before opening up. The others are caught up with other things so they can't do it."
"I see. Then I'll see you out."
With her umbrella in hand and her bag of chocolates in the other, Ulrika made haste and scurried off back home. As she pelted through the wet scenery, she once again made way to the cemetery.
Ulrika stared hard beyond the gate. It sent shivers down her spine just being near it. Using one leg at a time, she trudged across the street slowly and stiffly, pacing herself as if any unnecessary movement would awaken unwanted spirits. As she made her way, the wind blew harder and the rain splattered against the ground ominously, and suddenly a flash of light raced across the sky causing her to yelp and loose grip on her umbrella. The roaring wind picked up her umbrella and shot it over the gates of the cemetery. Her mouth dropped open.
Ulrika found herself staring face to gate once again. She could hardly believe her luck. As she stared wide eyed at the gate, it creaked and opened wider, signaling her to advance.
She wanted to cry.
There was no way she could possibly go inside during a stormy day, darkness hovering close, with black gates welcoming her to the afterlife. But a booming roar seemed to have scattered her senses and next thing she knew she was half way across a field of tombstones.
Oh her poor soul. All she wanted was to eat her chocolates within the comforts of her home, but no, she was in a graveyard filled with lots of creepy, old, decaying stuff.
A sudden shift caught the edge of her sight as she spun around. It was her umbrella.
Her perched umbrella suddenly began to rise and hover higher and higher. Soon it was above her. Before her now was a pale blue haired man completely drenched, holding her umbrella.
"Is this yours?" asked the man. Before she could reply, Ulrika instantly relaxed, relieved.
She'd seen this man before. He came by her shop on a few occasions to pick up ingredients or premade concoctions, therefore the man was alive. She'd seen his name a few times on the order forms. Roze...Rozeluxe, perhaps?
"Y-yeah...thanks." Her voice came out soft due to her lost composure, but now that she knew he wasn't a ghost, she could happily reply.
"The wind blew it over the gate. I didn't plan to come in, but I guess things just don't always go as planned right?"
"Right," he answered. He then handed over her umbrella and proceeded to walk away.
Ulrika was about to turn away, but suddenly, she found herself stumbling words out of her mouth.
"Wait!" she called. Damn, she shouldn't have spoken. Now that she called out to him, it meant she had to converse and by conversing, she had to stay her even longer.
"You...you don't have an umbrella..." she stated, unsure why she was even bothering with him. Well, to be honest, she did feel slightly worried. Who wouldn't?
"I'm fine." The man replied before walking away once more. He didn't go very far. A few feet away were two tombstones beneath a withering tree. She didn't notice before, but an umbrella had been placed under the tree with small makeshift wedges to keep it stationed. Underneath the umbrella were a few bowls of fruits and incense as well as bouquets of flowers.
Maybe it was his doing? Ulrika glanced back at the man who stood alone beneath the dark shadows of the tree. What a depressing scene.
"What is it?" asked the man. Ulrika flinched. Her presence seemed to be a bother despite his lack of malice.
"I was...umm..." Ulrika hesitated. She didn't want to say she was worried about a stranger albeit it very true, "It's just that...Why are you here on a day like this?"
The words just seemed to sputter from her mouth. She realized just how insensitive her words were, but even if they were, the man showed nothing of it. He remained silent and out of reach.
Ulrika didn't know what pushed her to do it, but she took tiny steps forward, closing their remaining distance. When she stood right beside him, she glanced downwards at the tombstones before them. Something caught her eye.
'Airlyxe and Rosalia Meitzen' as well as 'February 14, XXXX'. She shot a surprised look and let out a small gasp.
"My parents died today fifteen years ago. I come here every year to mourn for them." He didn't look at her when he said it. He just continued to stare off distantly at the stones.
"That's nice..." Ulrika whispered. The man swiveled his head.
"I-I mean, I-I'm sorry..." she stuttered. "It's just that...in the end...they- they're still with each other...that's kinda...sweet."
Oh man, could she possibly make things any worse. She just called someone's death sweet! Ulrika always knew she wasn't good at smooth talk, but damn, she never though she'd be this bad.
"Look, I'm sorry. I didn't mean it in a bad way."
The man gently shook his head, facing the tombstones once again. His gaze seemed to have dropped lower than before.
"It's fine. I guess you are right about that."
Huh? Ulrika looked puzzled.
"As ironic as it is to say, my parents loved each other to death. In the end, there's really no one else they'd rather be with."
Ulrika watched the azure haired man gently lift his gaze. He seemed a bit less tense prior to their meeting. Good! So she wasn't a complete screw up! But it still bothered her. The man's lonely figure brought grief to her stomach.
"I can think of one other person..." she hummed. The man looked at her questioningly.
Ulrika crouched down, laying down her umbrella. With her freed hand she motioned for the dumbfounded bluenette to follow her. Awkwardly the man crouched beside her as she plucked out a box of chocolate and shoved it into his arms, causing his eyes to flash alertly. Guiding his hands with her own, they placed it underneath the wedged umbrella.
"Valentine's day isn't complete until you have flowers AND chocolates. Now they can spend it with the people they love most." Ulrika flashed him a bright smile.
She had said 'people' not 'person'. Who could she be referring to, thought the man.
Ulrika frowned, the guy didn't get it. It made her temper boil.
"Geez, don't sell yourself short! You're parents may have been truly in love, but you're a part of it right? If what you say is true, then you're proof of that! Don't leave yourself out. Your parents probably wanted to spend this day with you too...so...so," Ulrika stammered, finally realizing what she had said, "...uhh...g-give yourself some credit.!" She turned away embarrassed. "If...y-you don't, they won't rest peacefully."
The young man stared at her stunned as she stood up straightening her form. Seconds later, he followed suit, straightening his back. He found her words and actions somewhat incomprehensible, yet strangely he felt lighter. They stood in silence for some time just staring at each other awkwardly, at least, for Ulrika it was.
"W...what?" she asked, still feeling embarrassed. He bent down and picked up her umbrella, holding it out before her.
"...Thank you." The man gently spoke. A light smile laced between his lips and sent a jolt through Ulrika's body. She blushed, being taken aback by his sudden gratitude.
"...It's nothing." Ulrika shied away, but glimpsed at him once more. Using her free hand, she pushed the umbrella away and thrust her bag of chocolate into his free hand.
"Chocolates can do more than just satisfy a sweet tooth. Take it. The umbrella too."
With that, Ulrika turned away and proceeded to exit the cemetery. The bluenette, with his hands full, could not reach out and stop her. Instead, he called out to her.
"Hey! Wait! I can't take this!"
"Huh? And why not?" barked the girl in the distance. Somehow, he felt like she was glaring at him. "Geez, for the love of your parents, take care of yourself first before you worry about anyone else! Give them some peace of mind, won't you!" She huffed. "...And me too."
The man stared at her quizzically, unsure what to do. He swore he heard her mutter a few soft words, but the pounding rain drowned out her last words. He watched as she raced passed the gates and out of his view. He wanted to yell it was dangerous to run in the rain, but she was too far and with the ongoing storm, she probably wouldn't have heard him. He did the only thing he could do. Stare dumbfounded at his occupied hands.
"If you keep moving around, you'll ruin my carpet." Said a less than enthusiastic Chloe. Just minutes ago, a drenched and hectic blonde came pounding on her doorstep. Again. She sighed at the shivering blonde huddled near her fireplace.
"What were you doing running around in the rain? What happened to your umbrella?" questioned the dark girl.
"It flew into the cemetery," the blonde muttered.
"You left it there?"
"I'll bring you something to change to. Go shower first. I'll get a room ready too. "
It was about an hour later that they'd finally settled down and sat comfortably on the couch. Ulrika had briefed Chloe about her small encounter on her way home. She sighed at the moping girl, hunched, cradling herself in her own arms. Chloe knew the girl to be bright and optimistic, but as much as she enjoyed seeing a distressed Ulrika, the sight of her now irked her.
"If you're going to cry about it, you shouldn't have given it away in the first place," Chloe muttered darkly.
"B-but those chocolates! Hey, do you have any left?" The darker girl shook her head.
"I gave them to my parents. I saved a few pieces, but I added them to the tea. I can offer you tea instead."
"That would be nice," muttered the downed blonde.
As Chloe left the kitchen to prepare more tea, Ulrika continued to twirl her fingers against the maple wood counter, whispering words of comfort to her sulking mindset.
As she recalled the luscious, sweet yet bitter taste, Ulrika dropped further into her gloom.
It didn't help that she knew she thoughtlessly handed them to a stranger. Yet, when she recalled the way he sullenly stood in silence, or the way he stared off so distantly, she couldn't fight the urge to find a way to make him smile.
His smile, she thought. The way he stood silently staring at her for what felt like decades until she finally spoke up. And then there was they way he replied.
The way his lips twisted softly on his face and how gently his eyes prodded on her. The memory sent another jolt through her body causing her to cringe. An unexplainable coil seemed to have knotted in her stomach.
When she recalled his gentle form, she could not regret.
"...I guess...it wasn't a total waste..."
"You're back pretty late, Roze."
Roze shut the door and turned to the presence of a flaming red haired man.
"I got caught up. Were you waiting for me, Yun?"
The man scoffed, "No, nothing of that sort. However, your roadway was blocked up again this year. Guess that's nothing new considering how popular you are." Roze snorted with disdain.
"Anyway, I brought in the chocolates for you. They're in your room." The red eyed man observed his friend curiously, noting a few things of interest. "What's that bag for? And you bought a new umbrella?"
"This? It's chocolate and no...they were given to me..." Yun's ears pricked up, catching the small hint of gentleness laced in his voice. He stared at the azure man, stunned.
"And you accepted?"
Roze put away the umbrella and set the chocolate down.
"I couldn't turn her down."
"Is that so? You seem quite pleased about it, though," teased the red haired friend.
Roze's eyes widened in surprise. "Do I?" He questioned.
"Yeah. You were smiling when I asked about the chocolate."
"I think you're mistaken." Roze crossed his arms with disbelief, detecting the taunt in his voice.
"Right, right. Whatever you say. So what happened to make you accept chocolates on Valentines day?"
"They're not Valentine's chocolate." He said, earning another surprised glance.
"Then what are they?" Yun continued to question.
Yun frowned and then sighed. So it wasn't what he was thinking. Too bad. He had hoped something interesting may have sparked the cold man.
Yun reached for the chocolate and pulled it out, tossing it to Roze.
"Open it up. I want to see just how fine these 'obligatory' chocolates are." Roze quirked a brow, but followed the man's command. As he tore off the brilliant wrapping, he stared at the boxed chocolate, amazed.
Yun couldn't believe what he saw.
"Do you know what kind of chocolate that is?" He asked. Roze shook his head and continued to stare at the beautiful box. He carefully pulled off the cover to reveal finely made chocolates.
"You can't get those around here," piped up Yun. "I had some before in a village to the far north. They're handmade with the finest quality ingredients from their prefecture."
Yun stared in awe as Roze picked up a piece and popped it into his mouth. Upon, Roze's surprise, the chocolates were simply divine.
"They're good...!" he spoke, utterly shocked at its heavenly taste.
"I can't believe a girl went so far as to give these to you..." added Yun. "So...what are you going to do?"
Roze then turned his attention away from the chocolate and back at Yun.
"What do you mean?"
"Since you accepted them as 'obligatory', shouldn't you be obligated to give her something back?"
Roze thought back to his encounter with her. They were strangers yet she went as far as to give chocolates to both him and his deceased parents. She had guided him and said unsettling words, yet they seemed to relieve him of a kind of heaviness. Her flashing smile still seemed to linger like the words of 'love' she imprinted on him.
"Geez, for the love of your parents, take care of yourself first before you worry about anyone else! Give them some peace of mind, won't you!"
It made him wonder, if perhaps, she may have been worried too. He'd never known a girl so full of surprises.
"...I guess I should..." He whispered, the words passing through his thin curved lips. Glancing down, he noticed tiny scripts imprinted on the wrapper.
'Ulrika Myberg'. Was that her name?
If he saw her again, he'd definitely find a way to owe it back to her.
Roze picked up another piece and inserted it in his mouth, relishing the taste. Perhaps, this is why girls liked them so much. It would definitely explain Lily's case.
"Good," answered Yun as he watched Roze bite into another piece of chocolate. "Those chocolates are worth $$$$$ a box."
And so he learned the epitome of guilty pleasure.
A/N: Okay, so what do you think? I don't know if it was boring or if it needs more work. If its lacking, then feel free to criticize and help me improve. Reviews are always gladly accepted.
And just so you all know...I completely made up Roze's parents's names.