DEDICATION: To everyone who asked for more SeiferxSquall. ^______^

WARNINGS: Angst...A hint of shonen ai (okay, it's more like a kick in the head)... blatant AU-ness (kinda...?)

DISCLAIMER: I own the plot, and all of the shit I made up for Seifer. Seifer, Squall, and FF8 belongs to Square, and they won't share with me no matter how cute I am.

AUTHOR'S NOTES: I wrote this during Math/Spanish/Global today. Ah, the joys of exciting high school classes. >.<
Anyways, I started this after I found out that this artist at school, Fei, was killed in a car accident on Saturday. I'd never talked to her, but I'd seen her art and it was really nice. And it just sucks.

Birthday Joys

By Angie

I hate my birthday. And I never knew why. I always just knew that I did, that the day couldn't end fast enough.

It was easy enough to write it off as a feeling of self-loathing: that another year had passed and I still hadn't changed, that there was still no directon in my life.

I finally know why. I hit me as I was checking the calender, one hand on my ever present choker.

My family died on my birthday.

I was hiding in my parents' closet at the time. I'd fallen asleep while looking for my presents. The think surrounding of clothes and the heavy walls had drowned out their cries.

When I awoke, they were dead. I walked down the stairs, a little boy of 4, and found them crucified on matching cross swords.

That was my birthday present.

I stayed there in that room, crying, calling to them to stop it, that it was my birthday.

That was all I could think about. How it was my birthday and they were ruining it.

The authorities came about a week later. THey had Matron with them, who cared for me.

She took me upstairs, cleaned and dressed me, and then led me to my parents' room.

There, she told me to gather some things to remember my family by. I couldn't get anything; I didn't know what to do.

Smiling, she said to leave it to her. Into her parents' closet she went, shifting through clothes before grabbing my father's coat, a long grey duster.

From my mother's jewelry box came a silver choker and another necklace, a long, broad chain with an emblem on the end, a cross sword with Griever super-imposed ontop.

With these items in her hand, she took my own hand in her other, and bade me to lead her to my sister's room. I blindly took her there, not knowing what I was doing.

Hearing the men downstairs yelling for her to hurry up, that it smelled awful here, how could I have dealt with that for so long, something must be wrong with me. She quickly picked up the stuffed yellow chocobo doll on my sister's bed.

She again took my hand, and brought me downstairs, to where the group of men were standing. The bowed deeply to her, then looked blankly at me, and led us outside.

There were 2 cars waiting there, a smaller, more modern blue one, and the larger, more expensive black one. The men got in the black one, but Matron led me to the blue one.

We drove a long while, she did not force me to talk, I was allowed to slip into the silence I had grown used to.

When we arrived at the stone orphanage, she brought me inside. She asked if I wanted to meet everyone now, of if I wanted to do something else.

I nodded uncommitedly to either, I remember just wanting my mother to come and get me and tell me it was okay.

Matron just smiled at me and led me to her room, it was like she knew what I was thinking. She sat me down in a chair in the corner, and left the room. When she came back a few minutes later, with her was a girl about my age with long strawberry blonde hair, about a shade darker than my own.

"This is Quistis," Matron said. "She's been here for almost 7 months, and said that she'd help you with anything you need." She turned to Quistis after she said this. "Quisty, this is Seifer. Maybe you'd like to introduce him to everyone?"

Quistis smiled, showing glowing white teeth. "C'mon Seifer, I'll introduce you to Irvy, and Sefie, and Zelly, and even Squall!"

Seifer just nodded again.

How long ago that'd happened... So much had changed.

Everyone had grown up, and changed. We drifted, and then came back together, only to drift again.

Not everyone had left. There was still someone there, someone who would care for me, be with me, when others wouldn't.

He still wears the necklace I gave him, when we were little. It bound us as friends, as enemies, and as something more...

He was my other half, and everyone knew it.

Warm arms snuggled around my waist, pulling my out of my thoughts.

"Seifer, what's wrong?" he looked at the calender.


Squall nuzzled at Seifer's ear. "Happy birthday, koi..."

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