I couldn't help but do a little side adventure for my favorite FF game

This is set after the events of the game.

I don't own anything~

Vaan tried to keep a calm look. The sweat and heavy breathing was not from the blazing sun above the Rabanastre market, in fact, this was the result of Vaan's attempt to run from a certain someone. Clutching the bag in his hand even tighter he pushed through the crowd, not noticing a pair of all too familiar white ears turning toward him.

"Still running like a child in a maze." Balthier smiled low. From afar he watched the blond make his way through the crowd, his bright red sash around his waist made him stand out from the rest of the crowd. The Sky pirate spotted his partner not so far away, she looked at him with dark ruby eyes, her nose twitching at his scent.

She raised a delicate white eyebrow.

Her partner nodded, grinning and bound into the crowd. The viera kept the younger boy's scent on track, weaving through the sweated, reeking bodies. She let out a sneeze as the rush of smells, cursing in her native language at the stench of hume.

"Penelo!" Vaan hissed, searching for his own partner. He didn't see the pig tailed blond anywhere. Giving a short sigh he paused to look behind him, seeing no familiar faces he went down an alleyway. Vaan almost flinched as he went past the entrance of the alleyway, the instinctive movement in hearing invisible Arcadian guards yelling at him and threatening to stick a blade in his side.

"Vaan!" A familiar voice whispered.

The pale eyed boy looked up to see his pig tailed friend leaning against a railing, the balcony of an abandoned home hung sadly in the middle of the alleyway. The metal was rusty and ready to bend at any weight, Penelo's light stature was dangerous enough. But will it hold a nearly grown boy?

"Did you see them?" He asked, disregarding the present danger and jumping up. His fingers wrapped around the railings, his hand-crafted metal gloves kept his fingers from getting dirty.

"I saw Fran just a few meters back." Penelo answered. He pulled himself up easily onto the balcony, pushing her over and into the abandoned room as the balcony collapsed. Vaan grit his teeth at the sound, anyone within a few miles of here would've heard that.

"I do hope the ship's ready." Vaan breathed, helping Penelo up onto her feet.

Not so far away Fran and her hume companion heard the sound of crashing metal. She looked toward him, his pink lips were pulled back into a slight mocking grin, perfect teeth shone through and completed the look. The viera was jealous of his perfect grin, always trying to set her own but failing to do so with the lack of a hard set jaw and chin.

"'Tis only a boy," She shook her head, "and he makes the noise of the marching band. You hume are loud creatures."

"He's louder than most of us, Fran," The Sky pirate chided softly, "I'm sure you remember."

"He is welcome into the forest no more." The viera nodded.

"Neither my ship. Yet he is insistent to appear on board." Balthier shook his dirty blonde head.

Both gave another smile before running toward the source of the sound. The railing to a balcony was a pile of metal poles in the alleyway. Fran picked up her nose and scented the young boy and his female companion.

"The boy has learned teamwork." Balthier nodded carefully.

"Will only delay the inevitable." Fran shook her head, her angel white hair picking up in the sudden desert breeze.

"We must make due with time." The younger man had an idea. Smiling once again he bolted down the alleyway, making quick work of the maze that enclosed the center of Rabanastre.

Vaan and Penelo wandered through the maze, knowing every curve, every turn and rock that dared set foot in here.

"I think we lost them." Penelo breathed, "What'd you take this time?"

"Nothing really." Vaan pushed away her question.

"Vaan..." She warned. The tone of voice always making Vaan feel uneasy, after this there was no lying to Penelo, she could tell.

"Alright, alright!" He stopped, holding the bag in front of her, "I just stole some stuff from the palace, the keys to the ship, some food and-"

"The keys to the ship?" Penelo grabbed for the pouch but Vaan quickly put it behind his back, "And the palace?! Vaan you're stealing from Ashe!"

"Ashe has enough jewelry to wear! And anyways Balthier told me I couldn't so I decided to prove him wrong." Vaan looked uneasily around the nearest turns. If the Sky pirates came now he'd be done for. Both of them would be.

"She's our friend! You can't steal from friends, Vaan!" Penelo scolded.

"Well, so is Migelo."

A silence came over them. Migelo was sick and couldn't find the money for a doctor. Ashe has yet to respond to their calls and the Sky Pirates are in no rush to help Vaan's old friend. Before Penelo could comfort the boy they heard footsteps coming toward them. Without another word the pair ran toward the back part of town, making good distance between them and their pursuers.

Vaan and Penelo reached their destination. An old abandoned warehouse that held the Strahl. Slipping through the back entrance the two started to unlock the ship, once the bridge was down they started to climb up.

As soon as Vaan's head poked through the entrance his forehead was met with the barrel of a gun.

"Dearest Vaan, when will you ever learn?" Balthier chided, "A man's home is his castle and a man defend's his castle well."

"Well maybe the king of the castle would like to help us," Vaan looked up defiantly at the older man.

"The king is taking no calls at this hour. Not when he is this tired with chasing brats through a desert city." The barrel was gone, "But you are welcome to come in a prisoners."

"Balthier this is serious! Migelo needs our help. Vaan is just doing what he thoug-" Penelo was stopped by the viera.

"Such words for sympathy do not move an angered king," She turned, gesturing with a long finger for them to follow, "Come now. The queen isn't much for patience either."

Hoped you liked it! Comments and reviews are greatly appreciated!