Confessions and disclaimers: I have written this fanfiction without permission of SquareSoft, who owns the characters. It is not for profit. This is my first uploaded fanfic and I apologize for the lack of spell check... and sudden verb tense switching. it seemed to go with the "voice". Also, it's been a while since I played the game and I probably have the names of the spells all wrong. Please just grit your teeth and get through it. I'll do better next time. I'm not crazy about the title, either, titles are the bane of my writing... ::Forces self to shut up and quit fussing::


Chapter One

By Race Ulfson

I never denied who I am.

People ask my name, I say, "Seifer Almasy", no hesitation and I don't mumble it either.

Turns out no one knows my name, really.


I also don't deny that I was the Scorceress' Knight. Couple times right after, people would recognize me, call me names.

Beat me up.

I took it a time or two, I let them do it. Felt I owed them, felt I deservered it.

Then I didn't feel like taking it any more.

See, there's a natural order of things, a pecking order, a food chain. No where in the equation was Seifer Almasy lets little pieces of shit gang up on him and beat him to snot.

So I put an end to that.

Okay, a little compromise here. Reality check. The scar faded to almost invisible - I'm a good healer - hair grew out, hair cut changed. I don't wear the trenchcoat anymore. But if anyone asks, Yeah, I was the Scoreress' Knight, whatcha gonna do about it?

No one's asked in a couple of years, though.

Balam Garden is still there. Well, here and there, because it travels. They're rebuilding Trabia and (Hyne help us) Galbadia is up and running with even a few Gardian Forces under glass for emergencies.

I live in Deling City. I like the crowds, the noise, the weather. And it gives me a certain kick to pass the Presidential Palace and look up at my old room.

Yeah, the guy standing next to you in line at the grocery store used to command the whole Galbadian Army back when we were half a tick from taking over the world. Remember, back 3, 4 years ago? Why did we not take over the world again?

Oh, yeah, there was this High School kid from Balam, the one with all the belts. No chest hair, no experience, no IDEA what he was getting into and no hope of him ever, ever giving up.

Sorry, Squall...

Don't miss the Garden. Glad I'm not a SeeD. Only hung around because I thought there was no where else to go. Too much of a coward to admit I hated EVERYTHING about the place, too much of a chicken wuss to run away and see if there was something out here I might like better.

Still have my gun blade, so I guess I didn't hate EVERYTHING. Don't carry it around much anymore. Like the trenchcoat, it was part of a romantic phase I out grew.

Recognizable, too. Why borrow trouble?

But old habits die hard. You hunt for guardians, for draw points as you travel. Memorize where they are. Keep yourself stocked up.

Slip off on week ends, days off, taking the gunblade into the wilds. Kill a few monsters for a little beer money, but mostly to keep the hand in, the edge on. And to draw off them, of course.

Sneak into Galbadia Garden in the dead hours, drain the draw points of curages, restores, esunas, shield spells. Whisper to the GF's, trapped away. Take 'em out for a spin if they're willing. The GFs eat your memories but Hells, I don't have many I need to keep.

I'm an EMT now. A paramedic. I love it. The physical requirements were a joke, the classes fascinating. All you gotta do is keep calm under pressure, not gross out easily, and stay professionally detached.

As if I ever gave a shit.

That's what the spells are for, although, really, I don't use them all that much. I mean, if a guy has smeared himself and his car all along the wall, a pheonix down isn't gonna help a lot. And if you respond quickly and properly and get the client to the hospital in one peice, then you don't really need the cures, either.

Every once in a while, when a kid might be left an orphan, or maybe it's the kid himself, I whisper a little curaga when nobody's looking.

Help even up the score a little...

... Hey, I have Fuujin and Rajin again. Not the same ones, of course. They got out while there was still time, thank Hyne, and are happily everaftering somewhere near a good fishing spot. I'll always have a soft spot for my original posse - after all, I lost my virginity to both of them... But they were made for each other although at first only ol' Seifer the Matchmaker could see it. Okay, maybe the real reason I have a soft spot for those two is that they are one of my few proven sucesses. I have a picture of Alma in my wallet. Two years old and already a heartbreaker. I sent the entire contents of my savings account for them to set up an educatinal fund for my little goddaughter. I told Fuu, Law School, Beautician School, anything please Hyne except a Garden. I threatened to teach Alma to turn tricks first. Fortunately Fuu agreed with me. And fortunately for my health, Raj understands my sense of humor, y'know.

My new posse... Fuu is 5'10"easy and about 140 pounds of solid muscle. She moves like a panther. Quiet, kinda like Squall - when she's not talking shop she doesn't talk at all, except the occasional witty/sarcastic remark that can sting enough to leave the scent of ozone behind.

I think Fuu knows who I am, or at least suspects. She asked about the scar once. Well, her exact words were, "Cut yourself shaving?".

"Had a little trouble plucking my eyebrows," I said.

"Try hot wax."

I caught her looking at me after that, with the 'I know you' look. I waited for her to say or do something about it, but it's been over a year so I guess she isn't gonna. I told you, once your nine days and 15 minutes are over, no one cares.

And they say WE have memory problems...

Rajin is a good kid, from somewhere in the sticks. Four inches taller than I am and more if he's stand up straight, dammit. He's as thin as a grayhound, all legs and arms and big sad eyes and when he talks, which is always, his deep bass voice rumbles almost incomprehensibly. He's a Professional Grade worrier and can drive you completely insane if you listen to him, which I don't.

We got a call about a messy car wreck and moved out. Raj drives, not well but very fast. Fu is usually shotgun. I'm the one with the extra initials and the license, so I sit in back and check stock.

When we got there it didn't take a rocket scientist to see that whomever was in the red sports car was pretty much a goner. Not a lot of room left in that baby for healthy body parts.

Do gooders and ghouls hovered. Someone had spread flares, the pinkish light giving the wreck a festive look. Raj and Fe grabbed the kit and ran to the brown truck, where the Everhelpfulls had at least enough wit to leave the victem alone until we got there.

Me, I checked the sports car, just in case the driver was a midget and somehow survived.

And fuck me if it wasn't Squall Leonhart, deader than hell.

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