Little Black Book

Chapter One

By Alexis Logain

He got to the wedding right after it started. Everyone was too busy sobbing, or looking at the bride, or the groom, or their dicks, or whatever to notice him as he slipped into a back seat in a shaded part of the courtyard. Squall's attention slid as he slipped into an internal monologue, debating on what to say. Before he knew it, the ceremony was over and most of the people had vacated to give their congratulations to the newly wedded couple before heading to the reception. One of the last in line to blubber over Quistis and Zell, Squall felt a prickling sensation wash over his skin.

"Told you he wouldn't make it," Zell whispered to Quistis, not noticing Squall standing in the shadows.

"Zell, Squall hasn't been part of out lives for how long now?" The couple turned now, smiling at Matron - who had that look on her face - Squall hated that look - and Cid, who was frowning.

"Almost six years," he supplied for the man who was once his best friend. "Congrats you two. Quisty, you look great. A beautiful, blushing bride."

"Well Hyne on a stick!" Zell turned and glomped onto Squall, who tolerated the contact with a well hidden grimace. "You did make it."

"Got here just after Quistis made it up the aisle," Squall told them. "Listen, can't really stay long - I have a ton of - "

"Are you two lovebirds coming or what?" a voice that was startlingly familiar to Squall - it ought to be, it haunted his dreams every night - called out. Squall slid his sunglasses back on and raised an eyebrow, more shocked than he had thought he would be. "Squall."

"Seifer." And it was, dressed in all of his tuxedoed glory, Seifer who was standing in the doorway to the inside of Balamb-G with pure surprise on his face. "Didn't expect to see you here."

Even though he had known to expect Seifer to be there, the tall, well-muscled man with short spiky blonde hair still managed to jostle Squall's system. Even though, he knew Seifer was back at Balamb-G and a SeeD, Squall still hadn't prepared himself well enough to see his former rival again. Even though he expected Seifer to be there, he lied anyway. "Same goes." Seifer resisted the urge to shiver, feeling as if the temperature had dropped by about fifty degrees.

"As I was saying," Squall began, removing his attention from Seifer and back onto the happy couple. "I can't stay long. But I wanted to say congratulations and, well, good luck."

"You aren't staying?" Quistis asked, her pristine skirt clutched in her hands, her knuckles matching the fabric.

"I don't believe it would be wise for anyone if I stayed." His tone was short and blunt - exactly that of someone used to giving orders and having them followed.

"Why not?" Matron asked. Squall's eyes narrowed behind his sunglasses and he turned to stare at her. "You told me that you're on hiatus from all Estharian involvement and Balamb-G hasn't sent you on a mission in ages."

"Yeah, stay." Seifer's tone was light and teasing. "Unless you don't think you can handle me anymore. Still afraid of me, Squall?" The brunette in question walked past Matron and Cid, around Quisty's gown, and up to Seifer, the sun sparkling off of the hoops in his ear.

"I was never afraid of you and I always could - and always will - be able to 'handle' you. However, I have other things I must attend to." He began to brush past Seifer when the man rested a hand on his shoulder. "Don't touch me." The glare on his rough, tanned hand was enough for Seifer to snatch it away, almost as if Squall had lit it on fire. Or frozen it into a block of ice…

"Fine. Hyne, give Shiva a run for her money why don't you?" Seifer grumbled.

"Squall! Wait!" Quistis ran up and stood in front of the silent brunette. "Please? Just for a week? Stay?" She reached out, daring to touch him this one time. He didn't flinch or move or glare at her, so she went a step further and gripped his hand. "Please? For me?"

Squall sighed heavily. He didn't want to be there. If he stayed, then the memories would come back and the dreams would be worse. If he was there, Laguna would be able to find him and beg him to forgive him - and there was nothing more disturbing than a 40-something President begging and sobbing on his knees. Okay, so maybe the idea of said President having sex with a woman more than half his age was slightly more disturbing but whatever Ellone did with her body was her business, not Squall's. But when he looked into Quistis' cool blue eyes that were pleading with him, Squall just couldn't say 'no.'


"Oh, I'm so happy!" She flung her arms around him and, for the first time in six years, Squall Leonhart was hugged.

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