I also need a bunch more icons lately. Maybe I will make some today! I need them for FF13 and, you know, other stuff.|
Still playing TWEWY. Still need to smack Joshua. Joshua also needs to SUCK LESS.
Anyway. I'm working on a Fairly Substantial FF13 fic, which is entirely from Fang's perspective. In the meantime some scenes seem to yearn for being shown also from other perspectives, and so, I am writing outtakes for my own fic - so far there are two, and they are both from Snow's perspective, because having a viewpoint character who is dumb as a box of hammers has been to the advantage of how I want to write them.
This is the second one!
Title: Family (And The Idiots Who Love Them)
Fandom: Final Fantasy XIII
Notes: Post-game, contains some implicit slight spoilers. Crossposted to fang_lightning.
Snow is careful not to arrive early. Serah's been at her sister's house for most of the day, and he misses her, but she'd given him dire warnings about coming to the house to see her - today, for some reason, that just wasn't permitted.
So he arrives at the same time as the others do. He can see their taxi coming in to land - Vanille had been visiting the Estheims in Palumpolum, and Sazh and Dajh had collected them at the station.
"Vanille!" Laughing, he half-catches, half-hugs her as she jumps directly at him from the taxi while it's not quite yet on the ground. "How was Palumpolum?"
"It was great!" She smiles radiantly. Behind her, the others are getting out in a more measured fashion.
"We had fun," Hope says, with a grin.
"Hope. Good to see you." Snow punches him lightly in the shoulder. "Hello, Mr. Est- I mean, Bartholemew." He still feels awkward around Hope's father, though he and Sazh get on well.
Dajh is barrelling towards Snow almost before Bartholemew can answer. Snow catches the kid before he hits Snow's knees and tosses him in the air. Dajh screams with laughter.
"Think maybe someone should knock?" Sazh asks drily. "We don't want to hold the whole party out here."
Serah lets them in, and directs them into the living room. Snow is surprised to see the furniture has been rearranged substantially - the couches are against the wall, and in the centre of room there is a small table, covered in a cloth of pure white silk. On the table he can see a folded length of blue cloth, marked with the same symbols that decorate the dress Fang had worn from Gran Pulse, and the knife Serah gave Lightning for her birthday.
Fang is there, wearing a dress he hasn't seen before - in the blue she prefers, but this is a full-length gown with no markings or decorations at all.
Vanille takes two steps into the room and stops, then gives a squeal of apparent delight that sets Snow's ears ringing. She throws herself at Fang and hugs her.
"Tonight?" she exlaims.
"Yeah," Fang says. "I'm sorry we didn't get the chance to tell you, but the lines to Palumpolum..." She grins. "Guess you and me have only ourselves to blame for bits of Cocoon still being broken."
She kisses Vanille's hair and moves forward to greet the others warmly. "Thanks for coming," she says to Snow.
"Of course," he answers, mystified.
The doorbell rings, and Serah goes towards it. She returns, to Snow's surprise, accompanied by Lieutenant Amodar. He wonders what he's doing here - Amodar is a decent guy, and he knows Lightning respects him a lot, but he wouldn't have thought she'd invite him to a family reunion.
He's not a lot less confused when Lightning herself appears from the direction of her bedroom, not least because Lightning, for possibly the first time he can remember, is wearing an actual dress - a sleeveless white gown with a hem that brushes the floor.
She smiles in acknowledgement of all of them, but speaks to Amodar first.
"Thank you for doing this," she says, her voice soft and happy. "It means a lot to me."
Amodar gives her a fatherly smile. "Me too. I wouldn't miss this for the world."
"What's going on?" Snow asks.
Lightning opens her mouth to answer, but at that moment Serah yells from the kitchen. "Fang! Lightning! I need a hand with the cake!"
They both dash off immediately.
"There's cake?" Hope says. "Cool."
Vanille laughs. "Of course there's cake, silly! It's -"
The doorbell rings. "Snow, can you get that?" Serah calls.
Snow goes obediently to the door. There is a small squad of Guardian Corps soldiers there, all in dress uniforms. They enter as soon as he opens the door. The leader gives him a casual nod in passing.
"Wait, what are you -" He trails off as he follows them towards the living room, not even sure how to finish that question. The soldiers go to Amodar, who nods at them and says something Snow can't catch. The soldiers form two lines by the walls on either side of the room, and draw gunblades that have been polished to a mirror shine.
Fang, Lightning and Serah come back into the room as the soldiers strike identical poses of parade rest.
"What's going on?" Hope asks.
"Hold on, I think -" Sazh starts to say, and then is interrupted.
"I think everything's ready!" Serah says brightly.
"Sir?" Lightning says, sounding surprised and pleased as she looks at the soldiers.
"I think someone's forgetting her place, Captain," Amodar answers, grinning widely. "I thought you deserved an honour guard."
Fang chuckles. "I couldn't agree more," she say.
If he didn't know better, Snow would swear he saw a slight blush colour Lightning's cheek. "Anyway, let's get this thing started," she says.
"Yes ma'am." Amodar grins, then raises his voice slightly. "If everyone could be quiet, please?" He takes a small ball from his pocket and tosses it in the air. A light comes on and it stops at the peak of its arc, hovers, and then rises and floats to a position near the wall. A panel retracts to show a lens, and Snow realises it's a camera.
"Recording." Amodar clears his throat. "I am Lieutenant Amodar of the Bodhum Guardian Corps, duly authorised to serve as witness in accordance with the law and regulations of Cocoon, on behalf of the government and people," he says, in a formal tone.
Snow opens his mouth to speak, looks at the camera, and shuts it again. He's seen this process, he's been a part of this process...
"I am Lightning Farron of Bodhum, also of the Bodhum Guardian Corps, ranked Captain," Lightning says.
Snow looks at Serah. Her expression is radiant with joy as she gazes at her sister. Clearly, she knew about this.
"I confirm the name of Lightning Farron," Amodar says.
"I am Oerba Yun Fang, of Oerba, Gran Pulse," Fang says. Lightning takes her hand.
They're getting married.
"I confirm the name of Oerba Yun Fang," Amodar says. "In the presence of me and these witnesses, I ask of you both: Do you consent to marry?"
"I do," Lightning answers.
"So do I," Fang adds.
"Do you confirm and aver that you pledge your lives to one another from this day forwards, without exception?"
"I do," Lightning says again.
"Absolutely." Fang glances at Lightning, and Snow feels his throat tighten - Fang's expression, for once unguarded, radiates a love and tenderness he would not have expected from the warrior he had fought beside.
"Then on this day I, Lieutenant Amodar of Bodhum Guardian Corps, bear witness to and certify the marriage of Lightning Farron and Oerba Yun Fang. End recording." The camera beeps, the lights dim, and it floats down to his hand. Amodar smiles. "Go on, Light, kiss her already. That's an order," he adds.
"Now who's forgetting my place?" Lightning asks, but she turns to Fang obediently.
Snow expects them to be brief and formal - neither of them is ever demonstrative in public, after all. But even as they're all watching, as Hope and Sazh start to lead the others in cheering and applause, Fang raises a hand and brushes Lightning's cheek tenderly. Snow sees her lips move, but can't hear her over the cheering - his own included - and then they close, for a lingering, tender kiss.
"All right, quiet down," Amodar calls out as they part. "We're not done with this wedding yet."
"But they're married," Snow blurts, without thinking.
"They're married on Cocoon," Vanille says. "They're not married yet on Gran Pulse."
"That's right." A smile is playing at Fang's lips even as she speaks with her customary firmness. "Everybody please join us by the table."
She and Lightning go to the table with the cloth and knife and stand together on one side. Vanille stands opposite as the guests form a loose circle around them, and picks up the knife with a solemn air unusual in the exuberant girl.
The room falls silent.
"I stand here for the elders who cannot be with us, sure of the blessing of their spirits," Vanille says, her voice soft and serious. "I stand for Fang, daughter of the Yun clan."
Serah moves to stand next to her and picks up the folded cloth. "I stand here for the elders who cannot be with us, sure of the blessing of their spirits," she recites. "I stand for Lightning, daughter of the Farron family."
"Oerba Yun Fang, what are your intentions?" Vanille asks.
"To marry Lightning Farron," Fang answers.
"Will you give your heart to this woman?"
"I already have." Fang says simply. Vanille smiles widely, but continues.
"Will you welcome this woman into your clan, and place her always at the centre of your allegiance?"
"Good." Vanille turns to Lightning. "Lightning Farron, do you match her in this pledge?"
"Yes, I do," Lightning's voice is clear and firm.
"Will you join with her forever, and with the Yun as your family and clan?"
"Oerba Yun Fang, give me your hand if you stand by your pledge," Vanille says. Fang extends her right hand over the table, palm up. Vanille takes a deep breath, visibly firms her resolve, and then lifts the knife and makes a small cut in her palm.
Someone, Snow isn't sure who, gasps slightly, but Vanille is continuing.
"Lightning Farron, give me your hand if you stand by your pledge," she says. Lightning extends her left hand, and Vanille, after an almost imperceptible moment of hesitation, makes a small nick in her palm, too, then places the knife on the table. "As you join hands now, you join your blood and your lives forever."
Lightning and Fang clasp hands, still over the table, and Serah speaks. "You are bound together with ties that cannot be broken." She takes one end of the blue cloth and starts wrapping it around their hands and wrists, tying their hands together, and they wait silently until she finishes. "May your love sustain you in the darkness, and bring you joy in the light."
Fang and Lightning both incline their heads in acknowledgement, and then Vanille turns to their waiting friends. "Now they're married," she says, and grins.
"Hey!" Snow exclaims. He takes advantage of his own bulk and muscle to arrive at the front of the queue as everyone closes in to congratulate them. "You know what this means, right?" he asks, grinning.
Lightning's eyes narrow suspiciously. "What?"
He claps a hand to Fang's shoulder. "Welcome to the family, sis," he tells her.
And then he dodges, just in case.