“Oh come now." "Lighten up a little.”
Surely he wasn’t actually upset.
A muted huff.
❝Go away first.❞
She leaned over quietly and reached down to poke his cheek lightly. "Cloud, are you asleep yet?" He looked cute like this and Rinoa couldn’t help but smile. Boys were always the most adorable when tired — the walls they held up during the day were usually lowered at this time.
and the instant motion of a hand waving the offending finger away.
He’d been quite happy sat sprawled against the wooden frame of a pew, bench lined upon the innards of the church where he’d hoped a certain flower girl would return to— but.
And maybe he’d been awfully tempted to just nod off for a bit, but; it appeared as though a rather rude individual desired to disrupt that.
❝I was tryin’.❞
“Probably a smart idea. Who knows what kinds of things I may be tempted to draw on that pretty little face of yours.”
Cloud didn’t appreciate being mocked.
❝Don’t call me that.❞
"Doesn’t that mean you’ll be sleeping?"
❝Not around you.❞
“M’not good company right now.”
It was a fact—not a suggestion nor a hint.
At this point, it was entirely obvious that the other wasn’t aware. And he could only surmise that the one surrounded by her bed of flora hadn’t told him. After all, why would she? In the aftermath of horrifying realization and venom spat from her supposed friend—
—It was a kindness to leave him out of the loop.
“Bad day." Not for him—for her. Thus, he was not allowed to enjoy the company of others nor even the slightest bit of bliss. The transgression for his harsh aid was to be met with bitter isolation and that was that. So the youth dared not to look at the other, unable to connect amber with eyes that shifted between green and cerulean.
For he might break under the weight of a hero’s gaze.
That was his cue to leave, right? The kid might as well have said ‘piss off’, and the overall result would’ve been just about the same, but…
Was it strange that a flicker of concern flared to life?
The expression drawn across the others face was so familiar that Cloud knew damn well that it’d been donned on his own visage for more than the odd occasion. Yet, when Cloud wanted to be left alone and folks struggled against his will in order to do otherwise, he understood well the frustration that came with such an act.
It wasn’t pity that stilled his legs but understanding.
❝—I can see that.❞
This - whatever Ed was dealing with - wasn’t going to be something a mere drink could fix. And Cloud could only assume that he, as nothing more than a stranger with a name, was not going to be the catalyst he needed to aid recovery.
Besides— how could he aid someone else
when he couldn’t even help himself?
❝You’d rather I bugger off, yeah? S’okay.❞
Neither his voice nor his face showed any trace of bitterness.
Instead, traces of a certain kind of clarity regarding the others state of mind remained.
❝…Lemme know if you change your mind about that drink, though.❞
Was that sweat upon the nape of his neck?
Or the slimy crawl of Ｄｒｅａｄ gaining way into shaken nerves. It wasn all familiar sensation, one he felt when confronting a foe that could easily snap him in two—
Or a soul who carried the rights to his life.
And he wondered if the other knew of his recent deeds, whether they were of sin or virtuous light was to be decided.
“…I don’t drink. Too bitter for me.”
Well— that was fair, he supposed. Cloud himself wasn’t overly fond of the taste of alcohol either, but was far more interested in the result of gluttonous consumption of liquor. The forced relaxation. The way in which it muddled with overactive senses and calmed turbulent thoughts.
But, perhaps he’d been foolish in asking for the companionship of someone who was still a minor. Or at least, he assumed.
All in all, what did he know?
He barely knew a thing about the other blond.
( But did that matter when all he wanted was something—
to scratch at the itch of loneliness he was currently suffering from? )
A sigh, and Cloud’s arms shifted in order to fold themselves about his chest.
❝—It’s not all bad.❞