After everything had calmed down, between the clean-up from the Prinny explosions to the strange fiasco that occurred at dinner between Ayesha and one of the Prinny servants (which in turn lead to even more Prinny explosions), now seemed like the best time for Laharl to call it a night. The Overlord just had to finish up on a few things before he could call it a night, namely seeing Flonne off.
"So, you mean I really hadn't told you ahead of time that I was coming?" the Archangel asked with a puzzled look on her face, much like when they were younger.
"As far as I know, you didn't. But come on, Flonne, even you know you can get ditzy from time to time... to time to time to time..." Laharl's voice trailed off as he silently continued for a bit, a smirk on his face. "But next time, will you please call before you try dropping by to see if I'm home or busy or not?"
Flonne nodded, hugging her old friend. "I promise. Now I have to go before Jen comes hunting me down. And you know how she is." She shook her head in slight annoyance as she spoke. Laharl knew what Jennifer was like and he actually barely tolerated her for Flonne's sake. Were it up to him, she'd have been sent to Hades for all he cared, but that would have sparked a war with Celestia, despite the peace between them and the Netherworld. "Well, I'll talk to you later, Laharl. And good luck with Barbara's training."
"What do you mean...?" he began to ask before she stepped into the portal behind her. What had she meant by that?
"Oh, Laharl." The Overlord turned his head to see Raven walking up to him. "Has Flonne left already?"
"Yeah. Why? Did you have something for her?"
The Saint shook her head, not saying a thing. Laharl knew she meant otherwise, given how her and Flonne seemed to just love to gossip and talk. "Anyways, my lord, everything's been dealt with, as per your orders. Ayesha in particular seems to have calmed down a lot, although you know her, always ready to start a fight."
Rubbing his temples, Laharl nodded. Yeah, their resident Fight Mistress had a thing for brawls and fights, as well as a not so secret obsession with himself, which annoyed Laharl to no end. "What of everyone else?"
Raven took a breath, as though readying for a long talk. "Everyone else is fine, although between you and me, I think Magnus and Kaili might be... celebrating another spar." A slight lewd and mischievous smirk bloomed across her lips as the words left her lips. "Yumi's still in the library with Sicily, reading as usual. Lizzie's somewhere around here, no doubt making more bets and things."
"What of Lilianna and Cyril?"
"Well, last I saw, he was back in the Dojo, training, and she was watching him like a lovestruck teenager too shy to tell her crush she loves him. I may need to meddle in that again." Giggles escaped her as she said that last part. "And as for Keith and Zaeon, in case you were wondering, they're cleaning up from dinner still, although they're another pair to meddle in. I swear, it's like watching a weird love drama thing, with both people being too damn shy and quiet to admit to the other their feelings."
Laharl chuckled at that, shaking his head ever so slightly. "Raven, you do realize you shouldn't really be meddling in their affairs at all, right? Let them go at their own paces."
The Saint looked at him with an all-too-knowing smirk, but didn't say anything, instead giggling softly. Laharl, even after the centuries he had know Raven, still had not a full grasp as to what went on inside her head and mind, other than it involved meddling in romance. When she finally did speak again, there was a spark in her eyes. "And before you ask, Barbara's seemed to have already gone to her room, which in itself is strange. I did check on her to see if she was alright, but she had fallen asleep already."
That was strange. Barbara had never done that before, even when she was sick and supposed to be bedridden. Every time she had been like that, he had all but ordered her to stay in bed and focus on recovering, to the point of tending to her himself. "Well then... maybe she's come down with something?"
"Prehaps, my lord, but it may very well be exhaustion or something." With that, Raven bowwed and went off to do whatever it was she planned on doing, which most likely was meddle with Lilianna and Keith. Laharl couldn't help but laugh to himself at the thought as he walked towards his room. Even after all this time, some things never changed.
Yet by the time he had reached his room, he once again found his thoughts trailing back to a topic that had been of focus to him in the past few years. It was something he never would have admitted to anyone other than himself, but every day, it grew in focus. As he opened his door and walked in, he had begun to push it back aside.
Until he looked up and saw who was standing in the middle of his bedroom.
"B-Barbara?" he asked, surprised by the presence of his most loyal vassal. She was completely out of her armor, wearing instead a plain blue nightgown. Her aqua greenish colored hair, which had grown over the years, fell down her neck, falling onto her shoulders slightly. Even in the dim light that flickered from the candles in his room, he could see her clear as day.
"M-Master Laharl," she said, her voice unnaturally quiet. She had a hand to her chest, clinging to the neck of her gown. "I-I'm sorry for intruding, but I... I have something I wish to admit to you... if you'll listen."
Laharl closed the door behind him, surprised by his Knight's actions. "Of course, Barbara," he responded, smiling slightly at her, even as he felt his heart beat hard against his chest. "What is it?"
He could hear her inhaling suddenly, then exhaling slower. "W-well... I-I've taken notice to y-your taking me on training sessions lately... And it has me wondering..." She fell quiet after speaking, looking down and gripping her gown more.
"Wondering what?" he inquired, walking closer to her.
"I-I was wondering... why. Why do you take on to train when I do not require any further training?" The words seemed to have flooded out of her, as though a part of a flash flood born of a dam bursting. "And not just that. You seem to push aside your duties, all for me. But why?" Her voice began to rise in volume and depth as she spoke, becoming bolder and more solid, more confident.
Laharl was taken aback by her sudden... bluntness in asking. "Well..."
"Ever since you walked in on me," she continued, interrupting him, "you've seemed to do everything to be near me. And it's made me realize something, something I refused to accept for years now." She looked up at him, eyes locked with his, her hand moving away from her chest and falling to her side. What was she...?
Before he could react, she shifted her shoulders, causing her gown to slip and fall off of her, revealing nothing but her flesh beneath. Laharl felt his face heat up at the sight of her exposed body. "I realize now that I've wanted you to see me like this, to be by your side not as a vassal, but as more." She paused, looking at him. "Mas- no, Laharl, I love you. I think I always have, deep down. And I want to be yours."
Silence filled the room as her words finished their echos. Neither one of them dared move, as though any action would break what had be molded. Barbara stared at him, almost as though waiting for him to reply, before looking as though she had fallen. "M-Master, I-"
She was interrupted by her lips suddenly having his pressed against them, sparking a sharp gasp from her lips before her body fell limp in his arms as he held her close. When she was given time for air, he smiled. "About damn time you asked," the Overlord whispered, leaning in and kissing her neck. "I wasn't sure if you felt the same."
Soft moans escaped her lips, sliding into his ears. "Laharl..."
"I've wanted you for a while now, Barbara," he admitted, picking her up in his arms and walking her over to his bed, laying her down gently as he began to remove his clothes. "But I was waiting to see if you felt the same. Now I know." Fully exposed, he crawled on top of her, looking down upon her lithe form, a stark contrast to her job. "So, will you be mine, Barbara, my Queen?"
Tears fell from the Knight's eyes. "Yes... my King."
And with that, they became one.
Raven smiled softly as she removed her ear from the door. So they had finally admitted their feelings to one another. About damn time. The Saint quietly moved away from the door and hurried herself to the rec room, a sly smile on her lips as she walked in.
"So, what's the verdict?" Lizzie asked, eagerly looking upon the arriving Saint. "Tell me!"
Raven sat down, smirking. "Zaeon won the bet. We have a new Queen."
"Seriously!?" Flonne gasped, clapping her hands together happily. The Archangel had managed to sneak back into the Castle after Laharl left, not wanting to miss out on the outcome. "I'm so happy!"
"Sheesh, Flonne, calm down," Etna muttered, shaking her head. "You're going Love Freak again."
"Well, I agree with Flonne," Sicily said, smiling. "I'm glad Barbara and Big Brother finally expressed their love for one another."
"Oh, they're doing more than that," Raven informed them, smirking lewdly, causing both Flonne and Sicily to become shocked and slightly grossed out.
"Well, now we'll have to wait for the announcement," Zaeon said quietly, smiling serenely, yet at the same time showing faint traces of joy over winning the little bet Lizze had created. "Oh, I'm so excited for them."
"We all saw this coming," Nathaniel said, looking up from his book. The angel too had been in on the bet, but more as a spectator. "I'm just glad it finally happened. Now maybe our Lord will focus back on his duties as well as Barbara."
Raven nodded in agreement, glancing at Zaeon. "Now on to the next little bet~"
"Which is...?" Lizzie asked, confused for once due to the mention of a bet. She'd made so many that she lost track of half of them.
"Zaeon, have you made any progress with Keith?" Raven asked slyly, smirking as she spoke.
The Archer's face went blood red. "W-w-what!? I-I... um... oh, dear, look, um... I remembered, I need to... um... do something. Bye!" Without a single word after, she ran off, leaving Raven giggling.
Flonne sighed, shaking her head. "Raven... you need to stop meddling in people's love lives. It's not right."
Raven smiled at the Archangel's words, glancing out the window and at the rising moon. "Perhaps, Lady Flonne, but sometimes all it takes is a little nudge." With that, she stood up and walked off, leaving everyone to their things.
And as she did, two hearts became one.
Well, there you have it, folks. Our story has come to an end, yet this is only the beginning. My next Disgaea fic will follow where we left off here ;)
And thanks again to KappeZ for letting me use Zaeon. I hope she's not TOO OOC
Deviljho's Hatred for inspiring me to make this and for all the help :P
And to all my many (I hope many lol) fan readers for reading this ^_^