Author's Note: The characters belong to squaresoft but everything else is mine. The characters may be a little off from their game-selves, but there is no way I can rip them out and put them in our world without severely changing their backgrounds, and if you change backgrounds, well, you change personalities. This story is inspired and influenced by works of Sodoshiin, Race Ulfson, Emily, and several others. Oh, and a lot of the pictures I had described are heavily inspired by works of the wonderful Japanese artist Maxim. Again, feedbacks are welcomed, both good and bad ones. (and flames still are laughed at) Thanks for all the people who liked Barbed Wire and provided feedback for me.


Chapter Two

By Jamaica

The figure stepped inside the dusk-bathed kitchen and immediately scanned the room. Jade-green eyes sparkled with diligent passion and never-ending mischief under the short hair of ripened corn. He was quite tall, with broad shoulders and the dense muscle of a football player. He wore a simple black t-shirt and faded blue jeans.

As soon as his eyes landed on Quistis, the boy's face broke into a huge grin. He sauntered forward and wrapped her in a hug. "So how's my favorite lady doing?"

She snorted. "Right, I'm the only lady who'll talk to you and who's paying half the bills for where you live." Nevertheless she accepted the light kiss on her cheek from the other boy. "Hey, meet Squall." She turned back to him. "This is Squall Leonhart, and this, is Seifer Almasy."

"Whoa, what 1930's vamp movie did they rip you out of?" Seifer tilted his head.

Squall scoffed in annoyance. Typical judge-by-the-cover dumb jocks. "Bite me." He retorted.

The blonde raised both of his eyebrows suggestively as a response. "Not literally, Seifer," Quistis rolled her eyes. "Give the guy a break."

"Aw, the type that can't take a joke?" He attempted to slide his hands further under Quistis' shirt, but was forced to give up when she slapped his arms, hard.

"Back off, geez," she scowled. "Or I'm going to let my boyfriend beat you up."

"Ha," Seifer laughed out loud. "Make sure you don't. Because if he ever tried then I'll have to tie him up and have my way with him *very personally*." He immediately let go of her as she swiped at his head, dodging just in time.

"If you *ever* do *anything* to him I will *kill* you. I do have ropes around the house and your neck is quite sufficient for hanging, you know." She pointed her finger to his face.

The grin that swamped Seifer's face was more than a little irritating in Squall's eyes. He decided that he didn't like the guy. "Grow up." He told the duo, statement clearly meant for the male to hear.

"Oh, and I suppose you are an expert in that field." Seifer said in the cocky voice of his. "What kind of name is 'Squall' anyway?"

"What kind of name is 'cypher'?" Squall furrowed his eyebrows together. He liked his name. It was much better than his last name. With all due respect to his mother and her kin, but Leonhart was probably the most ridiculous name he had ever heard of in his life. It may sound acceptable if he lived in a fantasy world with elves and pixies, but in the middle of concrete and cars and real people, it seemed outlandish. At least the name 'Squall' contained a flare of uniqueness that separated him from the mass with good connotations.

"So my ancestor's Russian. Haven't you heard of diversity?" Seifer gave him a look. "Where you from, the backwoods of Mississippi?"

"New York,"

Take that, he thought as the wave of surprise launched from his opponent's face. "Is your boyfriend the third person living here?" He changed target deliberately.

"Yep," Quistis replied, obviously relieved that they're no longer arguing to scar. "He's out with his team. First meeting of the year. And he should be back -"

Keys turned in the front door's lock.

"- right about now." Quistis finished. The door opened and a lanky boy in a soaked shirt and dirty shoes trudged in. He stopped before he went any further onto the tiles and kicked off the pair of Nikes. He was quite attractive, as Squall casually observed, with auburn hair pulled back in a ponytail down his back and friendly indigo eyes. And obviously not available considering Quistis just told him whom the boy was supposed to be. "What happened? I thought your meeting is just a get-together at the cafe?" Quistis asked.

The boy shrugged. "Alex brought a ball and we just took off. Hey, nice to meet you." He offered his hand to Squall, who was taken aback for a second by the spontaneous greeting. "Squall, right?"

"Yeah," he shook the hand. "Nice to meet you too."

"Irvine Kinneas. Cool, make yourself at home." Irvine said as he leaned over and kissed Quistis on the lips. "Ah, don't hug me, I'm sweaty. Is the hot water running?"

"Yep. Got it fixed this morning." Quistis replied. "And, oh." She seemed to notice that Squall's suitcases were still sitting conspicuously by the stairs. "Seifer, help Squall with his stuff. I got to go cook." "Right," Seifer snickered. "You just want me to stay as far from your boyfriend as possible."

Quistis flicked Seifer off as she followed Irvine back toward the kitchen. Squall smiled inwardly. Horny bastard, he thought as he proceeded with the task of picking up his trunks. I really don't want this guy touching my stuff, he frowned as soon as the idea entered his head.

"Just to clarify," Before Squall could reach the second suitcase, though, Seifer's hands had already gripped the handle and began to climb the stairs, "yes, I like men. Hope I didn't disgust you or freak you out with what I said before."

Squall nearly rolled his eyes. "Well, he *is* cute." He stated as he followed up after Seifer. The latter, however, stopped dead on his tracks. Squall kept on, past Seifer and turned into the room on the left. He could feel the other's eyes digging into his back.

"WHAT did you just say?"

"You heard me."

"Uh, wait a minute. Wait *just* a minute," Seifer dropped the suitcase in the middle of the second floor hallway, "Quistis!" He yelled downstairs.

"What?" came the muffled reply originated from the kitchen.

"I need to have a word with you! *Now!*" Lightening thudding footsteps informed Squall that the blonde had descended back to the ground. He sighed, then dragged the suitcases onto his bed. Unpacking was first priority.

He didn't like this house. It wasn't something he could actually pinpoint: call it intuition of an artist. But he seriously didn't like his current situation. And there was no way for him to back out of it.

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