DISCLAIMER: I dun own them and I make no money from this fic. The song lyrics belong to Tool (the greatest band known to man-kind) and the song is "Sober" (one of the greatest songs from the greatest band known to man-kind)...I'm going to the Tool concert in less than two weeks - can you tell I'm excited??? [bounces]
[stuff in brackets are lyrics]
By Alexis Logain
"Squall?" The deep baritone voice startled the brunette, who was leaning against the railing of the balcony that sat near the classroom where Quistis still taught classes. He scowled out into the sunlight; he had wanted to be alone for a little while.
"What do you want, Seifer?" he demanded. He wanted to wince at his harsh tone, but just couldn’t.
"I…I was looking for you."
"Why." It wasn’t even a question, but Squall was so tired of asking why.
"I wanted to say happy birthday." Seifer’s voice was quiet and somewhat reserved. It seemed that, over the past year or so, he and Seifer had totally switched roles. He was the angry man whom the entire student body tried to avoid and Seifer tried to blend into the scenery. He didn’t mean to change so much, but he was so tired of pretending to be what he wasn’t, what everyone wanted to be. He wanted the hell out of there, but was stuck because of his fucking duty.
"Thanks." He didn’t turn to look at Seifer but he knew how the blonde would look anyway. Seifer would be huddled over slightly, his jade eyes wide and he’d be fidgeting with something. His hands were always moving – a nervous tick. That lock of rebellious hair would be floating in the wind and his eyes would be either on Squall or on the ground. Squall wondered briefly how long it had been since he had seen Seifer smile.
"You’re welcome. And, uh…I wanted to give this to you." Squall turned then, the sunlight shining against his uniform and his hair ruffled in the wind. With a raised eyebrow, he watched as Seifer held out a small package. "It’s…it’s not much but I thought…I thought you might…" Seifer frowned and he ducked his head, taking in and letting out a deep breath. "I saw it and thought of you." Squall took it and glanced at the thin case that was wrapped in black and silver paper. It was, from the shape and feel of it, a CD. Squall studied it and the white card taped to it that had his name printed on it in plain, block script.
"Thank you, Seifer." A half-smile graced his features and the blonde nodded.
"No problem. I should really get going to class…I’m going to be late."
"I could write you a pass," Squall offered. Seifer shook his head and ducked through the door. Squall shrugged and pulled the card off the package before ripping open the paper. He smiled when he saw the CD – he had been meaning to pick it up for weeks but never found the time. It was one of his favorite bands. Pulling the envelope apart – he had always hated those damned things…envelopes were such a waste of time – and pulled out the card.
The front flap of the card was a black and white photograph that had been taken of the Centra Ruins by some hoity-toity photographer and was absolutely beautiful. Smiling idly at it, Squall opened the card and read the shockingly long note Seifer had scribbled out on the inside.
I bought a copy of this CD a while back and really like it. We always had the same taste in music and I thought you’d get a kick out of it.
It’s been a while since we’ve actually talked. I keep remembering your birthday from before…everything. Do you remember? We went out and got smashed in Deling City… Anyway…there’s a lot I need to say to you but I don’t quite have the words. I kinda liberated some lyrics and used them…they seem to fit.
[There's a shadow just behind me,
shrouding every breath I take,
making every promise empty,
pointing every finger at me.
Waiting like a stalking butler
who upon the finger rests.
Murder now the path called "must we"
just before the son has come.
Jesus, won't you fucking whistle
something but the past and done?
Why can't we not be sober?
I just want to start this over.
Why can't we drink forever.
I just want to start things over.
I am just a worthless liar.
I am just an imbecile.
I will only complicate you.
Trust in me and fall as well.
I will find a center in you.
I will chew it up and leave,
I will work to elevate you
just enough to bring you down.
Mother Mary won't you whisper
something but what's past and done.
I want what I want.]
I always went for what I wanted and I never meant to complicate your life. I never meant to hurt you so badly and to change you so much. I’m so sorry for everything I have ever done to you and I can only hope you can forgive me, even if I don’t deserve it.
I never told you before, but I guess that if I’m gonna pour out my heart, I may as well pour out everything. She promised me everything. Fortune, fame, power…I always was arrogant enough to think that I would get those on my own. But she offered me the one thing I could never refuse. You.
Anyway…happy birthday. Enjoy the CD.
Squall stared at the card. The words scribbled inside of it and carried over to the back. Seifer wanted him. Frowning, Squall wasn’t quite sure how to react. But the new information sure did explain a lot. Interesting…
Making a split decision, Squall went back into the school and down to the classroom where Seifer had been headed to. He just hoped Quistis wouldn’t kill him for the intrusion.
"Commander Leonhart," she greeted. Her students looked up and sat at attention. Squall nodded at her and scanned the room, seeing Seifer frozen and blushing.
"Instructor Trepe – I would like a moment with Cadet Almasy if I may." She nodded and Seifer stood, trudging to the front of the room. Squall left the room, allowing Seifer to follow him. "I read your card."
"So I gathered…" Seifer replied quietly. Squall stared at the package and then up at the blonde, who was busy looking everywhere but at him.
"It would have made things so much easier for the both of us if you had just said something," he said bluntly. Seifer nodded. "I suppose I could have said something too…"
"What?" Seifer’s head snapped up and his eyes bored into Squall’s. The brunette smiled and leaned forward, almost going on his toes to plant a chaste kiss against Seifer’s lips.
"That’s what. Go back to class, we’ll discuss this later." Seifer blinked and nodded, a grin creeping over his features. "And Seifer?"
"Thanks for the CD. I love it already. Almost as much as the person who gave it to me."
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