Disclaimer: Squaresoft owns final Fantasy VIII. "Nobody Wants To Be Lonely" is by Ricky Martin and Christina Aguilera. And a sarcastic basset hound owns me.

Feedback: Anything's welcomed except for spam, flames, and whining about how you don't like the couple.

Notes: I'm not a bubblegum pop fan! I have a weird range of tastes. But I actually like this song. This is my first FF8 fic and no I haven't finished the game. So don't kill me if I smeg some of the details up.

To Be Lonely

By Dianyx

Why had he agreed to this? Zell Dincht gritted his teeth and tried not to look uncomfortable. His friends had invited him for a night out. At first he declined. Playing third wheel was not his idea of a fun way to spend a Friday night. Squall had Rinoa (poor Squall), Irvine and Quistis were a couple, and Selphie was seeing another member of SeeD whose name Zell could never remember. Where did he fit in all this?

His eyes drifted around the table. All of his friends were busy chatting with their significant others. Except Irvine and Quistis who were on stage doing a really bad version of "I've Got You Babe". His gaze stopped at the other lone figure. Seifer appeared to be focused on the stage. But he taller man's eyes had that usual sad lost look in them.

Zell's insides twisted at that. In a strange way, he had always admired Seifer. Even with the bullying, Seifer had been so strong and proud. But after the defeat of Ultimecia, Seifer had changed. He had become quiet and withdrawn. He had rejoined SeeD and passed the exam with flying colors. There had been some unrest about the former Sorceress' Knight. But that faded away due to the complete change of Seifer's personality.

Zell hated every minute of it. He missed the old Seifer: the ego, the bullying, everything. Instead in his place was a man who survived each day instead of living it.

"Your turn!" Irvine's words broke Zell out of his thoughts.

"Wha?" Zell yelled and jumped up.

"Me and Quisty signed you up for a song. And you're going to sing it!" Irvine grabbed Zell and dragged him toward the stage. Zell grabbed for the table but missed. He then tried to drag his feet to stop the cowboy. But Irvine was way too determined.

"I'm not going up there all alone and making a fool out of myself!" the small blond yelled not caring who heard him.

"That's good. Because you're singing a duet," Irvine said too cheerfully. The cowboy ignored the blond's attempts to stop him from dragging him to the stage.

"With who…" Zell trailed off when he saw who Quistis was dragging onstage.

"You want me to sing with the Chic…fine, let's just get this over with." Seifer yanked his arm away from Quistis. He did his best not to look anyone in the eye.

"I'll do it!" Zell said, bouncing on the balls of his feet like an excited toddler.

"That's a quick change of heart." Irvine said with a hint of sarcasm.

"For a chance to see Seifer make a fool out of himself, I'll risk looking like an idiot." Zell regretted the cruel words. Quistis took the cowboy's hand and lead him back to their table, leaving the two blonds alone.

"Since when don't you?" Seifer muttered

"Come on! It will be fun," Zell said. He grabbed the larger man's arm and tugged him toward the stage. Zell might have been smaller but all the fighting made him strong. Seifer managed to trot along after the fighter.

When they reached the stage, an overenthusiastic DJ stopped them. "Okay!" his voice was perkier than Selphie's, "Who wants to be Ricky Martin? How about you, big guy?"

Seifer shot him a cold look. "There is no way I'm going to sing that Latin idiot's part!" He crossed his arms over his chest. Zell had to hide a smile when Seifer's patented glare flickered onto his face.

"I'll sing it then," the fighter reassured the nervous DJ. The DJ handed him a microphone.

"I guess that just means that you get to be Christina Aguilera," the DJ held out the microphone.

"WHAT!?!" Seifer yelled. He bit his lip and snatched the microphone. They stepped up on stage. Seifer wouldn't meet Zell's eyes.

The music started to play and Zell started to sing.

There you are, in a darkened room
And you're all alone, looking out the window
Your heart is cold and lost the will to love
Like a broken arrow
Here I stand in the shadows

In the shadows

Come to come, come to me

Can't you see that
Nobody wants to be lonely
Nobody wants to cry
My body's longing to hold you
So bad it hurts inside
Time is precious and it's slipping away
And I've been waiting for you all of my life
Nobody wants to be lonely
So why, why don't you let me love you

Can you hear my voice, do you hear my song
It's a serenade, so your heart can find me
And suddenly you're flying down the stairs
Into my arms, baby

Before I start going crazy

Going crazy

Run to me

Run to me

Cause I'm dying...
Nobody wants to be lonely
Nobody wants to cry (don't wanna cry)
My body's longing to hold you (I'm longing to hold you)
So bad it hurts inside
Time is precious and it's slipping away
And I've been waiting for you all of my life (ohh)
Nobody wants to be lonely
So why

Why, why don't you let me love you

I wanna feel you need me

Feel you need me

Just like the air you're breathing

Breathing, I need you here in my life

Don't walk away, don't walk away
Don't walk away, don't walk away
No, no, no, no...
Nobody wants to be lonely
Nobody wants to cry...yeah yeah

Nobody wants to be lonely (yeah ohh ooh)
Nobody wants to cry (nobody wants to cry)
My body's longing to hold you (is longing to hold you)
So bad it hurts inside (hurts inside)
Time is precious and it's slipping away
And I've been waiting for you all of my life (ohh)
Nobody wants to be lonely
So why (why), why don't you let me love you
Let me love you...

Nobody wants to be lonely
Nobody wants to cry (nobody wants to cry...)
My body's longing to hold you (I'm longing to hold you)
So bad it hurts inside (so hurt inside)
Time is precious and it's slipping away
And I've been waiting for you all of my life
Nobody wants to be lonely
So why (why), why don't you let me love you

As he sang, Zell couldn't believe how well the lyrics fit Seifer. If there was only something he could do to make the sadness leave the other man's eyes. And some of that sadness seeped into Seifer's deep singing voice. Who knew that Seifer could sing like that?

The song got harder and harder as they continued. Zell had been about ready to kill Irvine and Quistis. A thousand what ifs ran through his head? What if these feelings were more than just pity? What if he loved Seifer? But which Seifer did he love? The bully or the walking shadow? And was this what Seifer felt? No. Why would the other man feel anything about him? Before, he probably thought that Zell was a pathetic Chicken Wuss. And now the scarred blond probably hated him because Zell had helped defeat him.

They started to sing the last verse. That's when Zell dared to look over at Seifer. For a few moments the taller man was staring out at the audience. But then the Seifer looked at him. His eyes…Zell had never seen Seifer's eyes look like that. They were burning with some unknown emotion. So much so that their jade green was almost glowing emerald.

Zell reached out with his free hand and touched Seifer's face. And on the last line, Seifer pulled him close. "Why won't you let me love you?" Zell whispered, repeating the last line.

Seifer caught the smaller man in a kiss. Zell completely forgot where he was. He wrapped his arms around the scarred blond. The fighter let himself get lost in the kiss and in the warm happy feeling that was running through his body.

Outside that content sphere of existence, a corner of Zell's mind was aware that something was going on. It almost sounded like applause? Yeah, the crowd was cheering.

Suddenly Zell went flying and fell to the ground. Seifer pushed him? The small blond sat up on the stage. A flash of light gray exited the club. Zell paused but quickly jumped up.

He ran out of the club, not thinking about anything. Outside, he looked up and down the road until he saw Seifer. Zell ran after him. "Dammit Seifer! Stop!"

The taller blond stumbled to a stop. Seifer remained standing but hung his head. Zell caught up and stood behind him. He touched the taller man's shoulder but Seifer shrugged off the touch. "Seifer? Please…it's okay"

"No! It's not okay. You just tell them that I forced you into it. That and the whole thing repulsed you. Then I can get kicked out of SeeD instead of just quitting. Not that it matters."

"Wait! What? Why don't you think I liked that? And what's this about quitting?" Zell stepped so he was in front of Seifer.

"Who am I fucking kidding?" Seifer said darkly, "I don't fit in there. I'll always be the one who betrayed you all. I can't…I just can't…"

Zell grabbed Seifer and pulled him into a fierce hug. There, he listened to Seifer's ragged breaths as the taller man tried to hold back the tears.

"Zell," Seifer whispered, "It hurts. This mask is too heavy and it hurts."

As he rubbed the scarred man's back, Zell said, "You don't have to wear it. All this time I've tried to figure out who I've loved. You being a jerk or you depressed? And I think I figured it out. I love you. The guy that's underneath the mask. That's why it took me so long to figure it out. You don't let him out very often."

"Excuse me!" a woman said as she pushed past them. And they remembered that they were in a public place.

"You're quite the exhibitionist, Chicken Wuss," Seifer said after the woman was out of sight.

"You kissed me first! And don't call me that!" Zell said half-seriously.

"Thank you…for being here for me. And all this time I thought I was alone." A moment passed as Zell watched conflicting emotions cross Seifer's face. Finally an almost peaceful happy look appeared on Seifer's face.

"Come on," the taller blond said, "I know a place that's a lot more private than this." Seifer took Zell's hand and they walked back to the karaoke bar. In the parking lot, Seifer led them over to an old car.

"Taking me off to have your way with me, I hope?" Zell waited as Seifer unlocked the doors. But he was surprised when Seifer held the passenger door open for him. "Geesh! I'm not a girl. You don't gotta treat me like one."

Seifer closed the door behind Zell and got into the car. While he was waiting for the car to wait up, the taller man started to talk, "Just because you're not a girl, doesn't mean I can't act like a gentleman." He paused to reach over and tousle Zell's spiky hair. Seifer let his hand drift down to Zell's shoulder. "I may have not said this but I love you, Zell Dincht. And I want to show you that in everything I do."

Zell reached up and put his hand on top of Seifer's. "That's sweet, Seif. So where are we going?"

"It's a surprise. And don't nag me."

"I wouldn't do that," Zell said, trying his best to look innocent.

"Yeah right," Seifer smiled, "I know you. You're way too impatient."

They chatted as Seifer drove. Zell found that he liked this Seifer. The Sorceress' Knight still had a sad quality to him. But this wasn't the shadow of a man who had been lurking about.

Finally Seifer stopped at the edge of a forest. He got out of the car and once again opened the door for Zell. The smaller blond just blushed. The feeling of someone caring for him like is was too good to object.

"This the place?"

"Just a little bit of walking," Seifer said as he led Zell through the woods. Finally they arrived at a clearing. The view was of a large pond. A slight breeze blew making the reflection of the moon ripple in the water.

"Wow," Zell said in a hushed voice, "It's beautiful." He looked at Seifer with wide awed eyes.

"Thanks," Seifer took off his jacket. After finding an even grassy spot, he carefully spread it on the ground and sat down. Zell sat down next to him.

"At least you didn't give me that lame story about the car breaking down," Zell said as he snuggled up to Seifer.

"Nah, then we'd have to do it in the car. And you don't want to know how uncomfortable that is!" Seifer laughed and started to baby kiss Zell's face.

"Mmm, that's nice," Zell sighed and ran his fingers through the other man's short hair, "Seif? Can I ask you a question?"

"Mmmmmkay," Seifer said but continued by kissing Zell's neck.

"Why are you like that? I mean why did you become so quiet and stuff?"

Seifer stopped. "After what happened, I figured it was just best to become a good little soldier and just follow orders. The fewer waves I made, the fewer people would hate me. I mean more than they already do."

"I don't hate you. And the others don't hate you"

"I wish I could believe that," Seifer scowled, "I'm sorry. This is wrong and…"

Zell grabbed him before he had the chance to try and leave. "It's right. Don't you dare leave and to go to beat up on yourself. Come on! We'll do something fun!"

"Zell?" Seifer looked confused.

"I don't know," Zell scrunched up his face as he explained, "You need to have fun. You need to get distracted from this 24/7 bummer you're in. Maybe then you can get it through that thick skull of yours that you're worth having someone as wonderful as me loving you!"

"Mr. Wonderful needs to trim down the ego," the scarred blond said sarcastically, "But I know a way we can have fun." Seifer got a mischievous look on his face as he pulled Zell closer.

"And I've got one too," Zell said teasingly. He let Seifer bring him close for a kiss. Zell then quickly pecked Seifer's lips, pushed the other man away, and went running.

"What the hell?" Seifer yelled as he got up. He walked toward the pond, picking up articles of clothing. But there at the pond there was nothing there but a disturbance in the water. "Zell?" Seifer called out over the pond.

"AAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!" Zell yelled as he surfaced. He splashed water at Seifer who quickly jumped back.

"Come on in!" Zell urged, "The water's freezing!"

Zell's hair was plastered on his head. His eyes were bright. And his lips were turning blue. He swam a few feet closer until he could stand. The water coved everything up to his bellybutton.

"It's freezing cold! I'm not going in there," Seifer looked at the water, then to Zell, then to the water, and then back at the water again.

"I told you that it was cold," Zell crossed his arms over his chest and glared in his best Seifer imitation, "Now get in before I drag you in!"

"You wouldn't dare," Seifer said but not really believing what he just said.

"I dragged you onstage. Well after Quistis got you most of the way there. But still I did it! And I'll do it again."

Zell watched Seifer strip out of his clothing. Inch by inch, the perfect body was revealed. As he watched, desire shot through him. It made Zell imagine what it would be like to be intimate with Seifer. To have those large hands touch him. The feeling of Seifer's lips on his and then wandering down to explore the rest of his body. The sensation of wet skin…whoa! Zell realized that he was getting aroused and ducked back into deeper water.

Seifer slowly stepped into the water. "It's fucking freezing!" he said at knee high.

"I told you it was freezing." Zell was doing his best to stop staring at Seifer's crotch. 'He's that big!?!' was the only thing repeating over and over in his head.

"This isn't regular freezing, Chicken Wuss," Seifer grumbled as he eased himself in, "This is *fucking* freezing! There's a huge difference."

"Definitely huge," the small blond muttered and blushed.

Seifer started to laugh as he figured out what Zell was referring to. He ducked underwater to get used to the cold. After a moment to get used to the shock, he swam over to Zell.

Zell jumped when Seifer surfaced right next to him. The tall blond pulled him so close that not only were they facing each other, they were pressed up against each other. Seifer kissed him, letting his tongue explore Zell's willing mouth. Then he surprised the tattooed blond by grinding his hips against Zell's. Unconsciously Zell thrust back and moaned into Seifer's mouth. Seifer stopped the kiss and whispered into Zell's ear, "Feel's like you don't have anything to worry about either, Zell love."

Zell broke away and swam a few feet away.

"Shit," the taller man swore, "I'm sorry. I didn't want to make you uncomfortable."

"It's okay," Zell admitted but stayed where he was, "It was just going a little fast. And I never…with a guy…well with anyone…and I didn't know what to expect."

Seifer then smiled at him. Not one of those smirks but a genuine smile that made Zell smile back.

"We don't have to do anything" Seifer reassured his new love, "I wanna be with you for as long as I can. So there's no rush on anything." A new expression crossed Seifer's face, "Besides, I owe you something."

"What's th…" Zell was interrupted by a large splash of water. "Seifer, you asshole!" he sputtered, "I got water up my nose!"

Seifer merely laughed. He was laughing so hard that he barely spat out, "I didn't know that Chickens could be so cute when they're wet!"

"You're going to pay for that!" That started a huge water fight between the two blonds. They stopped the splashing and tried wrestling the other underwater. But then Zell slipped. Down he went, dragging Seifer with him.

When they surfaced, Zell leaned up against Seifer. "You're cold, Zell," Seifer said and started to lead the smaller man out of the water, "You'll get sick if we stay in here." Seifer grabbed his shirt and started to towel Zell off.

"I'm okay but thanks," Zell murmured. He relaxed to Seifer's gentle touches. "Seif?" he asked, "Are you doing anything during your weekend off?"

"Before tonight, I figured I'd go to the club to play nice and then spend the rest of the weekend reading. Why?" The taller man got into his clothing and handed Zell his things at the same time.

"I was planning to surprise my Ma and visit with her," the tattooed boy's voice was soft as he explained, "Then I got the surprise. She went to go visit a friend. So I'm alone this weekend."

They walked hand and hand toward the car. "So what do you want to ask?" Seifer said hopefully as he opened the car door.

"Do you want to stay with me? I don't know what will happen if anything does…but…," Zell shyly looked at the ground.

"I'd love to," Seifer said. As he bent to give the boy a kiss, he noticed that Zell was half asleep. "Come on," he said as he helped Zell into the car.

Seifer got in and started to drive back into town. A thousand thoughts ran through his head. "What happens when your friend's find out you're in a relationship with the enemy?"

"They give me any shit and I'll tell then that I'm in love, I'm happy and to go fuck themselves if they don't like it." Zell responded.

Now it was Seifer's turn to blush. He didn't realize that not only did he say that out loud but also Zell was awake enough to respond. "Thanks Zell," he said to the now sleeping blond, "I love you too."

The End

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