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FFIV Ficbit: "Skyclad" (mild Rosa/Cecil)

Ugh. My creative writing muse is in a deep, dark sleep, and it seems unwilling to give me much. But FFIV gave me this, so, for what it's worth:


Title: Skyclad
Rating: G
Wordcount: 488
Characters: Rosa, Rydia, Cecil
Spoilers: Final Fantasy IV, ascent of Mt. Hobs (road to Fabul)
Notes: I'm playing Final Fantasy IV for the first time, and I'm puzzling over Ms. Fanservice vs. Mr. Armor-Plated Batman. I like the characters, I like the ship, but their costuming is throwing me. Also, I like Rosa's interactions with Rydia.


Rosa gazes across across the fire, sharing a silence that is almost comfortable despite the desperate fears tomorrow may hold. Her cloak is wrapped around the Mist child, who has finally fallen asleep with her head pillowed on the woman's lap. Rosa's eyes hold a crinkle of mirth and rueful frustration. She is too tactful to voice her thwarted wish in the presence of the desolate bard who paces the camp's perimeter, fingertips brushing laments from his strings.

Cecil notices her scrutiny and nods back. The corners of his lips tick up in a faint smile, although she cannot be sure of it in his helm's shadow.

"You've found us a treasure," Rosa murmurs, fingers fretting the wild green hair spilling over her knees.

"I'm sorry," Cecil says, a hardened reflex at this point.

"I see it will take more than Esuna to excise that word from your lips." Rosa shrugs in fond exasperation; she knows that this argument can only be won from within. "Beloved, would I not wish for our own to be such as she? I will almost regret when Rydia outgrows our aid."

His eyes widen. Rosa has not spoken so directly of the future in a long time, and his thoughts of the future have all been too dark.

"She will leave us soon, I think. In the meantime, I am honored to teach her what I may."

He exhales. "In your hands, at least, her mother's spirit may rest easier."

"Cecil." Rosa tips up her hand, a glimmer of moonlight on the palm mimicking the soft glow of Cura. "Let it be. Your every deed has been honorable since this child crossed your path. Hold onto her light."

His shoulders hunch. It makes her ache to remember his straight, erect carriage in the prow of the Red Wings' flagship, in happier days when they were sent on embassy together. Knight's armor is a wall she cannot penetrate. She will strip herself down to bare skin as if to compensate, and still he will not see her, eyes focused within.

He probably sees less in that direction than she does.

"Cecil?" She tries once again, because she will never stop trying.

There is a lurch, then, a creak of leather and rivets. Rydia does not stir at his clanking steps -- brave girl, resolutely trusting, although Rosa will soothe away her nightmares before dawn -- nor does she awaken when he kneels ponderously, almost placing his hand over the healer's.

He does not touch. He rises again and moves behind them. Rosa hears the catch of his elbow joints as he folds his arms, facing out, staring off into the clear cold sky where the mountainside falls away.

Wings clipped, she thinks, and wonders how long it will take for him to cast away the carapace with them.

In Fabul, she recalls, the men fight all but skyclad.

There, maybe, he will learn himself anew.

This entry was originally posted at http://auronlu.dreamwidth.org/230438.html, where it has comment count unavailablecomments.
 

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
melchar
Apr. 9th, 2013 06:43 am (UTC)
Nice! Some people look very nice in armor, but I wouldn't mind seeing a bit more skin [especially in the case of some guys].
auronlu
Apr. 9th, 2013 06:59 am (UTC)
I really don't care what he looks like, but when the two main characters are a guy encased in armor like a judge magister, complete with mask, and a gal who's wearing a bikini with a few gauzy drapes and a cloak, I start going WTF.

It hits my eye as a sexist stereotype. I find it distracting.

So I was groping to reinterpret the bizarre contrast into something that makes sense psychologically: Cecil walling himself off in his despair.

Not only that, but Cecil has implied a few times in the game that the Dark Knight armor is tainting his very soul. If white mage Rosa's able to detect Rydia as a summoner just by looking at her, I imagine that she can also sense the curse in the dark armor, and it must be distressing her, watching the armor spiritually eat him alive.

"Skyclad is an old sacred word referring to the pagan tradition of worshiping unclothed. It's not necessarily sexual, although it can be, since sex is considered sacred as an expression of life, but more importantly, it's dropping shields and masks and defenses and expressing onself openly and vulnerably.

Rosa, white mage, is durned near skyclad in this game. I know it's just fanservice, but I prefer to give her a little internal agency.

Oops. There I go babbling again. Sorry. :D
melchar
Apr. 9th, 2013 09:45 pm (UTC)
I can think of nothing else I'd rather do than read your 'babble'. [I did know what 'skyclad' meant tho. Given Cecil's armor color, the idea of him nigh unto naked and covered in a blue, mildly hallucinogenic dye IS an appealing mental image. O woad is him.]
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