A/N: Just so you won't have to Google it:
Nyctophilia - preference or love for the night over the day.
How Blake Belladonna loved the night.
She loved how the shadows enveloped her, accepting her in their dark embrace. They welcomed her like a long lost daughter, returning home after departing for so bitterly long. Whenever she felt lonely, scared, or unsure, she could be rest assured that the moon and the stars would be there for her, night after night, through cloud or fog, rain or snow. Tonight, they shone vividly in the velvety night sky, gazing down only for her, to listen to the woes that silently spilled forth from her heart for them, and them alone.
Her unbound ears basked in the freedom that only the night could gift her, stretching themselves with the heavens above as her only judge. There was no one here to mock her now, no one to gaze heatedly with hatred for who she was, for what she was. The only sound she could hear was her own breathing in the still and windless night.
Her left Faunus ear twitched as she listened to the nightly escapades of other creatures hidden in the darkness, inaudible to human ears. A noise from the shadows made itself known from behind. Probably a bird.
Blake inhaled, taking in the refreshing scent of the midnight air, bringing with it the smell of fresh earth and newly bloomed spring flowers. She allowed herself to smile, grin reaching from ear to ear to as she walked through Beacon's darkened courtyard, admiring the intimidating silhouettes of the shadowed buildings. The school statue rose high and mighty above her as she passed, the stone hunter and huntress forever immortalized on the pedestal acting as silent sentinels watching over the school, protecting them from what went bump in the night.
Covered in a blanket woven from darkness, she felt no fear in strolling through the sleeping grounds, making her way toward the division of the school and the entrance. Anticipation buzzing through her veins as she traveled to a location known only to her, looking forward to what she had planned.
The moon was full tonight, it's broken pieces visible and shining brightly, all the way down to the last vestiges of splintered dust from fragments long rotted away. Her feral yellow eyes soaked in the wane beams from the celestial body greedily, reflecting the silver light. A mirrored reflection of the light from the sun itself.
Blake meandered down the long stone path of Beacon's entrance, heading toward the docks where the airships would come and go. The docks passed by in a blur as she made her way toward the cliff side, sweeping her glowing gaze over the inked trees. What was a beautiful bluff in the day became a black chasm in the hours of early morning, the rocky outcropping obscuring the ground below in shadow.
The lone girl backed away from the edge of the cliff before lowering herself into a crouch, the muscles in her legs coiling. Dashing forward, she sprung away from the ground, launching herself over the edge and into the abyss.
When one has full confidence in their landing strategy, falling becomes the most enjoyable part of the process. Arms spread wide, she felt as the pleasurable sensation of free falling engulfed her, the wind cooling her heated skin and billowing her hair out like wings as she rapidly descended. A minuscule grin on her face as the earth rose closer and closer. She faced it unflinchingly, counting the moments down in her mind as she waited for the right time. When the ground was upon her, she vanished.
Blake looked back to the spot of dirt where she would have become a bloodstained smudge from the safety of the branch she alighted on, watching as the last remnants of her after-image faded. Climbing down cliffs were for the inexperienced.
A dislodged rock fell from the rocky bluff, the clatter echoing throughout the forest and reaching her sensitive ears.
Ignoring it, and acting as though she didn't jump and survive a hundred foot drop, Blake casually continued her travels. She deftly hopped from tree branch to tree branch, never once touching down on the forest floor. While the shadows were her allies, that did not mean they would not hide her enemies.
Twenty minutes later, she came to a halt, gaze flickering back and forth as she scanned the sequestered woodland terrain she had arrived at for potential threats, the windless night disturbing nary a thing. Satisfied, she concluded that there was no nothing to fear.
She leaped down from her perch, landing perfectly in a crouch. Amber eyes glinted with playfulness as she stood up fully and took in the sight of her small, secret, getaway.
Laid out before her was a circular field of wildflowers bathed in moonlight, the small stalks bobbing in delight in an almost non-existent breeze. The freely growing strands looked as though they were tentatively brushing against the underbelly of the sky and waving to the stars as Blake looked out over her private haven. What would be a magnificent display in the day transformed into a beautifully eerie sight in the night, and her favorite part had yet to begin. This was the place she came to in order to get away from the real world, if only for a short while.
Stepping forward, Blake ventured out into the field, once more relishing the feel of the crisp night air upon her skin as she walked and admiring the new, budding flowers that had grown since she last visited. Slowly, she came to a stop, choosing not to stray too far from the the tree line separating the field from the woods. After all, she had a visitor. It would be rude not to greet them.
Feline ears perked atop her head at the sound of approaching footsteps trying to blend in with the low sound of crickets chirping in the distance, their timing off as their feet were brought down on the offbeats. The intruder that had been following her since her initial departure was lacking in the art of stealth.
She chanced a glance over her shoulder, spotting something that did not hide itself adequately enough in the darkness. They might as well have been trying to hide from her in broad daylight.
With a ghost of a grin, Blake returned her gaze forward, focusing her attention on the sky. She called out, loud enough for her voice to carry to the one behind her. "I know you are there, Yang."
Someone coughed in surprise, their breath catching in their throat and choking them at the sound of their name. This was followed by a string of curses as the person came forth from the concealing shadows, revealing none other than Yang Xiao Long.
With a sigh, Yang approached the stargazing girl, halting less than half a meter from her. Head lowered and hand grasping her elbow in front of her, she looked as though she were a child that had been caught doing something naughty and was being scolded by a disapproving parent. "How did you know it was me?"
Without batting an eye, Blake replied, "I recognized your footsteps." She briefly shifted her gaze from the sky to look at the wide-eyed blonde standing behind her before returning it to the moon. "You also have no sense of stealth, unlike most everyone else. If that wasn't you bumbling around in the dark, I would have assumed a Grimm had made it's way on campus and followed me out here."
Yang held a hand over her heart, pouting. Eyes gleaming in childish play as she voiced her hurt. "Ouch, that stings, Blake."
"You'll live." She answered with a laugh, a carefree laugh. One only used when someone was letting down their defenses. One only used in the presence of someone they were comfortable with. Yang never heard Blake laugh like that.
A hand waved itself over Yang's face, causing her to blink as she anchored herself back into the present. "Huh? What?"
"You were staring at me."
"Oh, heh. Yeah." Yang rubbed the back of her neck, embarrassed at being caught again.
Bringing her hand down, Blake looked up at Yang. Her left ear flicking slightly in annoyance by the fact that, even in heels, Yang was still a few inches taller than her. "Why did you follow me out here?"
Yang glanced around as she fumbled for an excuse. "Uh, I was… out for a stroll and just happened to notice you?"
She smirked as she rolled her eyes. "At one in the morning? Likely story."
"Well, what about you? What are you doing out so late?"
Turning away from her, Blake once again looked up to the stars, speaking as though she were addressing them instead of another person. "I like to come out here sometimes. Go on a little late night venture into the woods and sight see, travel, stargaze."
Yang tilted her head, eyes trained on the dark girl's silhouetted back. "At night though? Isn't that a little dangerous?"
"Any more dangerous than letting you cook in the kitchen?" Blake shot Yang another look over her shoulder, eyes shining with mirth. At Yang's sheepish shrug and smile, she shook her head. "I suppose it can be dangerous if you do not know where you are going, but I have come out here on numerous occasions. Nothing has happened to date, so you do not need to worry about me. I can take care of myself."
Blake listened as the long grass rustled at Yang's approach, the other girl stopping beside her and joining her in peering at the heavens. She felt as an arm found its way around her shoulders, making itself at home. "Now that is something I know all too well!" Yang laughed as she squeezed her partner in a one armed hug. "You do this pretty often then?"
"Often enough." Blake smiled fondly at the moon. "Watching the night from here has become a hobby of mine since initiation. Once I discovered this place, I knew I had to come back and view the stars. I have yet to be disappointed."
Yang shifted her lilac eyes to the girl beside her. Stunned to see the girl whom was normally so closed off and distant during the day seem so open and radiant in the moonlight. The Faunus had yet to even detach herself from Yang's touch, her arm still lazily draped around Blake's shoulder and keeping them together, hips slightly bumping in their close proximity.
"You don't mind me being here? 'Cause if this is a private thing for you, I can always go." Yang spoke slowly, exercising the utmost caution.
Black hair loosely swayed as Blake shook her head. "I do not mind. If anything," Amber eyes turned to meet a lilac stare, a gentle grin still adorning her lips. "I am happy you're here."
Yang gave a soft smile in return. "Why's that?"
She laid her head down on a warm shoulder, enjoying the abundant heat radiating off the taller girl. "It is nice to have someone to share this with. Do you know that giddy feeling you have when you know something no one else does and you wish to share it?"
Blake could feel Yang laugh as the shoulder she rested against began to shake. "Yeah. I know it."
"It is a lot like that."
"Cool, cool." Yang nodded, accepting Blake's reasoning at face value.
They both looked out over the scene in silence. Everything still and picturesque, as though it were painted upon a canvas. Although, to Yang, the most interesting view was the girl with her in that moment. The enigma that was Blake Belladonna, the mysterious huntress-in-training.
"Oh!" Blake lifted her head up, abruptly leaving Yang's side. The blonde did her best to hide her disappointment as Blake stepped away. "Since you are here, I should tell you that the best part of the night has yet to begin."
"The best part?" Yang raised an eyebrow, watching as Blake began to saunter toward the center of the flowered field. Her eyes glued to the sinful sight of Blake's sassy, sashaying hips.
"Yes! It is a wondrous sight. You have to see it at least once." Looking back at the motionless blonde, face scrunched in puzzlement, Blake beckoned to her with a wave. "What are you waiting for? An invitation? Come on!"
Violet eyes had a hard time tearing themselves away from the captivating picture before her. Besides the artful way she walked, the Faunus looked as though she were treading upon a platform made specially for her, a stage constructed from the heavens above. The moonlight shone down on her just right, creating a backdrop of midnight blue mixed with royal purple and a scattered sea of stars that made Blake shine with a light all her own. To rephrase Blake's words, it truly was a sight she felt she had to enjoy at least once.
"I'm coming, I'm coming." Yang called to her companion, calmly running after her.
At the center of the field, Blake sat down on the wild grass, the tall, leafy blades more than six inches high. The dark girl atop them laid herself down against the natural terrain, flattening the long tendrils and using the springy green surface as a cushion while she looked up into the sky.
Patting the space beside her with a grin, Blake motioned for Yang to join her. "Over here. The grass is quite comfy."
"Don't mind if I do." Yang replied, settling down mere centimeters from her partner. Yang leaned back beside her partner, peering up into the black dome of outer space from her supine position.
As she soaked in the night, she had to admit that it was an amazing view. From their little woodland field, miles from the city and several kilometers from the school, there were no artificial or phosphorescent glares to outshine the lights twinkling above them. A tapestry stitched from galaxies framed a beautiful portrait above them, the radiance of each and every incandescent star visible and glimmering down from on high, as though they had their own personal audience. The two of them unknowingly the main attraction.
"Is this the best part of the night yet?" Yang inquired.
Blake giggled as she responded. "No, not yet. There is still ample time before that happens. Until it does, I thought we could get comfortable."
"What is the best part?" Yang shifted her head to the side, looking over to Blake, who was looking right back.
"You will know it when you see it." Blake responded.
Without warning, Blake shifted over so that she and Yang were entirely side by side, the Faunus hooking the brawler's arm in her's. Yang raised no complaints at this, enjoying the sensation of her bare arm warmly rubbing against Blake's cooler one. Silently, she laced their fingers together, giving her approval of Blake's actions.
"Hey!" Yang exclaimed, eyes back to the sky. "There went a shooting star!"
Blake's own yellow orbs twinkled with an excited gleam as she watched the streak flash across the purple hued horizon. She responded back with an uncharacteristic, childlike, exuberance. "I saw it!" Another flash. "There went another one! Over there!"
Yang watched with a slightly open mouth as the last remnants of the falling space debris began to fizzle out. As she watched, a random inquiry ran through her mind and found itself on the tip of her tongue. "I wonder what it would be like to be a star."
Blake raised an eyebrow. "A star? Why would you want to be a star?"
"Because then I'd be so hot, I'd be out of this world." Yang replied with a wink, unable to help herself.
Blake groaned in exasperation. "No." Breaking away from the other girl, she began to slowly drag herself somewhere that Yang was not. "I am not staying here if you are going to make lame jokes."
Laughing, Yang rolled onto her side and grasped Blake's arm before she squirmed out of reach. "W-wait a second. Heh, I'm sorry! I couldn't resist that!"
"You're terrible." Blake pouted as Yang followed after her and pressed her front into Blake's side, her arms encircling her in a tight hug. The blonde settled her cheek atop her bow-less head as she brought Blake close to her, the Faunus able to hear the comforting, steady beat of Yang's heart within her chest.
"Honestly though, I was thinking about how cool it would be to hang around in outer space. To travel around the known universe and stuff, float around and look at all the other life that might be out there. I'm telling you, it'd be one heck of a trip." Yang explained, not giving Blake a chance to escape her embrace for fear of her trying to leave again. Not that she was struggling anymore, the Faunus had given up after capture, not planning on going anywhere.
"The notion does sound rather entertaining." Blake grudgingly agreed, allowing Yang to hold her close.
Yang did not miss the significance of Blake's consent. She was behaving like an entirely different person tonight, but Yang decided she liked this new side of Blake. It meant that there was more to learn about the usually secretive huntress.
"Was there supposed to be a meteor shower tonight?"
"Not that I can recall, no."
Yang's jaw slackened in disbelief. "So that still wasn't the 'best part of the night'?!" She began to shake the smaller girl by the shoulders, Blake's world warbling as she was jarred back and forth. "What the heck is the best part of the night?!"
"Shh." Blake lightly slapped her left hand over Yang's face in an attempt to silence her, cutting off her vision but not putting an end to the other girl's insistent shakes.
"Don't shush me!" Yang took away Blake's palm with her right hand, refusing to cooperate.
"No, Yang." Blake spoke in a hushed whisper, eyes trained on the sky above them. "It's happening."
Halting her senseless shaking, Yang looked up from Blake, blinking in surprise as a glowing light hovered in front of her nose. Where had that come from? Was it a star as well? When did a star get in front of her face?
Blowing it away, Yang watched with childlike wonder as the little blinking light flew away from her and into the air. "What the…?"
Blake sat up, looking around the field with a gleeful grin. "Oh, wow! There seem to be more than usual out tonight."
Getting up as well, Yang was surprised to see, in all directions, a glowing sea of lofty lanterns brightening the area around them in a soft, buttery yellow light. More of the tiny creatures began to come out from inside the forest and flit around the field, floating in the air as they bumped into each other, the flowers, and, occasionally, the spectating pair. Late comers joined the gathering crowd with every passing second.
"Fireflies?" Yang asked in awe at the sight, mouth agape at all the little insects gathering around them.
"You mean lightning bugs." Blake corrected automatically, barely registering her own words.
"No, fireflies." Yang responded, looking over to Blake. Lilac eyes meeting amber in a determined stare.
"Lightning bugs." Blake shot back.
"Fireflies." Yang insisted.
"Lightniiiinnnng -" Blake drew out the word, closing the distance between her and the other girl challengingly. Daring her to contradict her again.
"Fiiiiireeeee -" Yang mimicked Blake, drawing closer and sounding out her word in the same condescending manner as her opponent. She never backed down from a challenge.
"Bugs!" "Flies!" They both exclaimed at the same time. The two girls laughing as they closed their eyes and tapped their heads together, bonding over their shared silliness.
Blake smiled as she opened her eyes, mirth filled violet orbs looking back at her. "How about we call them what we please and agree that both are adequate names." Blake compromised as she inhaled, the smell of lavender in the air overriding her senses with everything Yang.
"I can get behind that." Yang answered, enjoying how close Blake was. From this distance, it was easier to take in Blake's jasmine scent, reassuring the brawler that the girl she was with was, indeed, there, and was not a figment of her imagination.
Wordlessly watching the girl opposite her, Yang's expression became more pensive. She had always known that Blake was secretly a dork like the rest of them, as she often caught glimpses of the girl hiding underneath. Whether she was cheering on her teammates, participating in one of their ridiculous schemes, or giving in to the guilty pleasure of procrastination to play games and goof around, Blake was a girl who wanted to have fun. It was in moments like these that she came to appreciate the fact that Blake was like that, like her, like any of them. Even if that girl she was became lost in her attempts to cover herself up, her true personality buried along with her identity from everyone out of fear of what they thought. Tonight, Blake was an entirely new person, but that did not mean she had suddenly undergone a drastic change. It meant that she was finally being herself, taking off her self-imposed shackles in her freedom, it was wonderful.
Staring into eyes mere inches from her own, Yang's gaze eventually lowered south, down toward the tempting view that was beautifully pink, full, lips. She missed the sight of Blake's eyelids lowering slightly, the Faunus waiting for when the blonde would make her move. The dark huntress wondered if Yang actually needed a written invitation.
Lazily bringing her gaze back up, Yang took in a shuddering breath, unsure. Soon, her gaze was darting between gorgeous amber pools and a tantalizing mouth.
Sighing, Blake put an end to her internal debate. "Are you going to stare all night or are you going to kiss me?"
Yang did not need to be told twice after getting the go-ahead. She crashed their lips together with reckless abandon, surprising Blake with the intensity. The ferociousness with which Yang attacked Blake knocked her flat on her back, the blonde's hand on her cheek and grip on her waist keeping them locked together as they went down.
Blake rolled her eyes before she closed them, relaxing and kissing back, welcoming Yang into her mouth. The hungry kiss bruised their lips as they clashed, mouths opening to allow entrance to the other. Yang took the lead, exploring the other girl's mouth by tracing all the along the inside. Across her lips, across her teeth, along the roof of her mouth, beneath her writhing muscle, she made sure she left no corner untouched. Circling the other girl's tongue with her own, she began to suck on it greedily, desperately getting as much as she could out of this kiss. She had been waiting since their team formed to be able to do this, and if this was possibly the only one she got, she was not going to waste it.
Continuing the dance of their tongues for a few minutes more, they finally broke apart, a string of saliva wearing thin and disappearing as Yang pulled away. She smiled in satisfaction at the breathless girl below her, feeling Blake's chest heave. "I was expecting your tongue to be rougher."
Blake scrunched her face in confusion at the comment, speaking only after she had regained her breath. "Rougher?"
"You know, sandpaper kisses? Like a cat?"
"I'm a Faunus, not a cat." Blake glared up at the grinning girl.
"Hmm…" Yang slowly reached up, gingerly scratching at the base of one of the cat ears with a blunt fingernail. "Are you sure?"
The dark girl stiffened beneath her, eyes going wide at the unexpected sensation before rolling back into her head as she closed them in pleasure. She moaned at the feeling as her body naturally became limp, hands uselessly splayed at her sides in a vulnerable position. "Nyuuh… No, p-please stop…"
Upon hearing the plea, Yang immediately stopped what she was doing. She quickly sat up and held her hands up in a show of surrender, stray fireflies landing on her fingers as she stayed stock still. "It was all in the name of science and I didn't mean anything by it, I swear!"
Recovering from the turn on, Blake looked up at her with a soft gaze, eyes crinkled in amusement. "I know you didn't Yang, but for future reference, do not touch the ears. Not unless you want me to assault you after."
Leaning back down, Yang smirked deviously. "If we're talking about the sexual kind, I wouldn't mi-"
She was interrupted by another palm to the face. "No."
"Too soon?" Yang mumbled from around the other girl's palm.
Blake laughed at the vibrating sensation of Yang speaking into her hand. "A little."
Removing face from palm, Yang laid back down, close to the unusually cheery girl. As the two huntresses went through their night, the fireflies continued their dance around them, unaware of what the pair was doing and not able to care less.
"So…" Yang began, positioning herself on her back and intertwining Blake's fingers in her own once again. "What does this mean?"
"What does what mean?" Blake shifted her head to the side, curious amber eyes aimed at the blonde brawler.
She refused to meet her gaze, focusing instead on the stars as she spoke. "What does this mean." With her free hand, Yang gestured to the air. "This night, this conversation, that kiss, this!" She held up their wrapped hands, limbs warmly tangled together. "What does this mean to you, Blake?" Yang finally twisted her neck to look Blake in the eye, the Faunus surprised at the worried violet pools beamed at her.
"I think…" Blake rolled onto her side and pressed her front into Yang, reversing their positions from earlier. "It means I like you." She slowly pressed her mouth to Yang's, giving her a much shorter, more chaste kiss than their first. "I want to be with you. Do you want to be with me?" Her voice lowered during her last words. Now that they were out in the open, she could not take them back. She felt her heart hammer erratically in her chest as she waited for Yang's response, the tables having turned as it was her turn to wait nervously. With bated breath, she hoped to hear what she longed to hear about what the blonde truly wanted from this, from her.
Falling onto her side and bringing them face to face, Yang reached out and gently ran her fingers through smooth ebony locks, admiring the girl beside her as she looked into glowing golden orbs illuminated by the moon and the lantern light of the fireflies around them. Her voice level in her seriousness, assuaging Blake's fears. "I do. I would like to be with you very much."
Adjusting the wandering hand to grip the back of Blake's neck, Yang brought them back together. Slightly chapped lips moving as one in a kiss that was less rushed, less hungry, more passionate. Blake knew she could get used to this.
Eyes closed, they brought their foreheads together as they breathed, listening to the other's breath and enjoying the other's presence, the other's scent, the other's touch.
Without warning, Blake yawned, open mouth displaying sharp canines to Yang's observing eyes. It did nothing to unnerve her as she laughed at the sleepy girl, hugging her and bringing them up to a sitting position. "I think we've done enough stargazing for one night. How's about we head back to Beacon and get some shut eye?"
Blake nodded, head and eyes drooping with drowsiness as she leaned into her new girlfriend. She did not remember feeling this tired earlier. "Sounds good…" She mumbled, slipping into dreamland as she put all her weight against the stronger girl beside her.
"Hey, don't fall asleep on me now. We still have to head back!" Yang peered down at Blake, propping her up with her side. "Blake? Blaaake." Yang sang her name as she nudged the unconscious girl's head with her shoulder. "You have got to be kidding me."
Sighing, Yang brought an arm below the underside of Blake's knees and settled the other against Blake's back, hoisting the smaller girl up in a bridal carry with little effort.
"You so owe me for this." Yang muttered under her breath as she trudged back into the woods in the direction from whence they came, Blake nestled securely in her arms. Blake subconsciously nuzzled Yang under her chin, bringing an arm around her neck to keep herself better situated in the brawler's hold. A warm, fuzzy, feeling quickly overtook the irritation in Yang's chest, the word 'cute' echoing within her mind.
She hummed as she thought of an idea, purring lowly as she spoke to herself and nuzzled Blake back, "You're sleeping in my bed tonight." She knew, come morning, Blake would not mind.