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Do Not Disturb

Fandom: Final Fantasy XII
Title: Do Not Disturb
Author/Artist: iceprincessd
Theme(s): #15 take a hint; scram
Pairing/Characters: Balthier/Ashe
Rating: PG
Disclaimer/claimer: Balthier and Ashe do not belong to me. Property of Square Enix.
Summary: “I am going back inside and you are staying out here.”

Vaan whistled to himself as he walked the streets of Balfonheim. The pirates there were gathered in droves to celebrate Reddas’ life. Vaan thought that the raucous manner everyone was acting in was a far cry from the subdued mourning that he would have expected. Being glad that you had the chance to know someone is a lot better than being sad that they’re gone, I guess.

He stumbled but righted himself. He wasn’t drunk – okay, maybe a little - but at least Penelo hadn’t given him any disapproving looks while they tried their first “real drinks,” as one of the Whitecap patrons had informed them as they plunked glasses of something dark and mysterious in front of both of them. The best part was that they had been free. Whatever it had been, it had turned the tip of Vaan’s tongue numb and had burned all the way down his throat to rest uncomfortably in his stomach. Penelo had taken one sip, made a face, and pushed her tankard aside. Vaan had finished his and started in on what she had left over.

He never could pass up free things.

Somehow, he had found his way back to the inn above the Whitecap. He swayed on his feet as he tried to remember what room he was supposed to be in. He did remember that he was sharing a room with Balthier though. As much as he liked the man, Balthier was a horrible roommate. He rarely talked, which made awkward silences that Vaan felt the need to fill and he slept too quietly. Vaan was used to Penelo softly sighing in her sleep and shifting around from time to time – though she had a bad habit of kicking him in the back every so often. Balthier just lay there on his bed. Vaan often felt like he had to get up and check on him just to see if he was still breathing once and a while during the night.

He wondered if Balthier did the same thing when they camped, but never really could find out since they took different watches and Balthier’s bedroll was the farthest away from the campfire. But since Fran hadn’t seemed concerned, Vaan just chalked it up to a personality quirk.

Huh. The door was locked. He grabbed the handle again and twisted, but it wouldn’t budge. He patted his pockets to see if he had a spare room key, but came up empty handed.

“Balthier, the door’s locked.” He hoped that he had the right room; Basch was scary when he didn’t get enough sleep. Vaan had woken him up early once and the older man had muttered something under his breath about testing the edge of his axe on certain annoying street urchins. He had also given Vaan the worst sort of glare before rolling over and going back to sleep.

Vaan really didn’t want to see if he had been serious about that threat or not.

“Balthier?” He rattled the knob again. “Are you in there?” He knew he had gotten the right room when he heard a growl from inside, followed by a muted thud and then the sound of Balthier cursing while hopping on one foot, by the sound of it.

Moments later, the door opened up a crack and Balthier stuck his head out. Vaan noticed blearily that his hair was messed up as if he had run his fingers through it and his shirt was missing. “The door was locked,” he explained. “And someone’s stolen your shirt.”

Balthier nodded, stepping carefully outside into the hallway, closing the door behind him. “Yes. There was a reason too.” He looked at Vaan critically. “You are drunk, my friend.”

Vaan held his index finger a little ways away from his thumb. “Only a little.” It would have been more convincing if he hadn’t slurred. “So why’s the door locked?”

“I have a guest.”

“Oh. Well, the more the merrier!”

Balthier rubbed the bridge of his nose with his fingers. “Actually, not in this case. I have a lady guest.”

Normally, Vaan wouldn’t be so slow on the uptake, but his brain had been dulled by the drinks earlier. Dawning realization hit and he opened his mouth only to close it again. “Oh. Right, gotcha.”

Balthier sighed. “Good. I’d appreciate it if you didn’t tell anyone.”

“Especially Ashe?”

Balthier looked like he was either going to be sick or he was trying not to laugh. “Especially not her.”


They looked at each other for a while before Balthier fidgeted on his feet. “Well. I’m going back in there then.”

“Okay.” Vaan made a move to follow.

“And you’re not.”

“Oh. That’s right.” He leaned over and winked. “lady guests.


“So, um, Balthier?”

Balthier inhaled sharply and turned back to face Vaan. “Yes?”

“Where am I supposed to sleep then?”

“I’m certain you’ll find somewhere.” He opened the door and slipped inside. “Good night.”

Vaan leaned back on his heels before he got the door slammed in his face. There was the unmistakable sound of the lock sliding into place. Vaan turned around. He wasn’t tired yet; maybe someone would offer to give him more free drinks downstairs. He turned towards the door again when he heard a shriek of laughter that sounded like it could have belonged to Ashe.

“Nah. Balthier’s not her type at all.” With that, he wove his way back downstairs.

In the harsh light of morning, his head pounding and mouth unpleasantly dry, Vaan couldn’t recall anything from the night before except for downing mug after mug of the dark any mysterious stuff much to the amusement of the people around him. He certainly couldn’t remember falling head first into the chocobo stables.

At least he was fully clothed. That was something to be grateful for, especially since Penelo was currently standing over him and shaking her head.

“Really,” she said, crossing her arms in front of her. “I can’t leave you on your own for a second, can I?”

A nearby chocobo gave a soft “Kweh” and licked the side of Vaan’s face. At least there was someone that understood him.

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