Right, my first FFXIII fic. Written because I was in a car, and this oneshot had been planned for ages. It's completely Lightning's POV.

I hope you like.

Oh, and I don't own FFXIII. Otherwise, this scene would be in it.

When I returned, Hope was already asleep.

He was careless, anything, or anyone, could have found him and attacked him. He wouldn't even have realised what had happened by the time he was dead.

I sat down opposite him, dropping to the hard ground of the Vile Peaks.

I watched the boy sleep, saw him dream. Then he spoke, just the one word. "Mon?" He was quiet, still asleep, I hardly heard him. His expression had become pained.

"Not even close." I muttered, looking away. My eyes closed for a second, before I opened them and stood, quietly padding towards him, kneeling next to him. "It's all right..." I whispered in his ear. "You're safe." Part of me hated the lie.

Then I bent down and kissed him in the forehead, like I used to do when Serah had nightmares, years ago. Like she did for me. Hope's expression softened slightly. His eyes cracked open, just a little.


"Go back to sleep." I half-ordered. He slowly fell back to sleep, and I almost smiled. It reminded me of when I was young, when me and Serah were growing up, without our parents. Hope had become almost a brother to me, a little brother who I could help learn. I cared for him like I'd only ever cared for Serah before. That's what Odin made me realise.

I prepared to spend the rest of the night awake, watching out for threats, keeping Hope safe, asleep. He needed rest. We would reach the Grappa Whitewood tomorrow, hopefully slowing pursuit.

And Hope truly needed his sleep.

Does this seem like Lightning is in love with Hope, or just really cares for him? I'm curious as to your opinion.