Title: One Moment
Final Fantasy X
Word Count: 1370
Prompt: "Auron/Lulu, Sunlight on cold skin"
A/N This ficlet is inspired by and picks up where Lynnxlady's wonderful story Grieve left off. Except I don't write them half as well as she did.
There should have been more hours between midnight and dawn.
More warmth, too, although Lulu characteristically refused to yield to the elements. The hull of the airship's deck was cooling now, but it had nearly scalded them for a few hours while they...
... Auron's back was stiff. Regrets were pointless, but he wondered why he felt none.
He looked down at her cheek, stark white under the red edge of his coat. He suspected that cheating death at Yunalesca's hands had only whetted Lulu's appetite for defying fate: she would fight his death, too, just as she would battle the night sky's creeping chill with firaga applied to the ship's metal skin. Even asleep, there was a prideful arch to her eyebrow.
Defiance. He had died for it. She still lived by it. Perhaps that was why he had awakened to find the mage curled against him, warm curves pressed against cool, scarred hide, reminding him of what he was not. Her hair flowed over his hip. Her scent was on his face. Her breath, slow and steady, was hot against his neck.
Bemused, he watched the rise and fall of his coat across her shoulders, wondering how soon before Kimahri or one of the others came looking for them and tripped over the rest of their clothes tossed into the airlock. It would be prudent to wake her. But their current situation had little to do with prudence. His arm fit as comfortably around her waist as the weight of a sword against his back, but it was a lie. This conjunction was as temporary as hastega's heady rush. They should be returning to familiar orbits, propriety, duty. Yet he found himself reluctant to disturb the beautiful creature snuggled against him. He supposed he was still a man, and she was very much a woman... as he now knew all too well.
They could afford to wait until sunrise, surely.
Her breaths grew shallower. At last, a lavender-shaded lid flicked open. She looked up a him with a moment's unguarded wonder before her dazzling smile tucked in its corners and retreated to a prim line. She exhaled and stretched out, unselfconsciously rubbing against him.
Auron regarded her drily. "Good morning."
"No platitudes," she said at once.
"I wasn't aware that—"
He had forgotten how quickly she could move to dodge a fiend's lunge. Her mouth crashed over his. Auron responded with gusto, cynically amused at his body's lifelike responses. She was... difficult to refuse.
Her fingertips were trickling down his sides, stroking knitted muscle. They were also freezing. Auron was barely warmer than the thin air, but he wrapped his hands around her ribcage and rolled her beneath him. They wrestled in the growing light of dawn, legs twining. His knees clanked against the hull. Heat lashed his back in parallel lines: she was playing with fire again.
Lulu's free hand slapped the deck-plates. Warmth spread out underneath them like desert heat on Sanubia's sands.
"Don't waste your strength," he chided, propped above her on his elbows. Her breasts felt too soft against his scarred, stubbly chest.
She laughed: a low, purring chuckle that melted coherent thought as effectively as a Confuse spell. "Don't guard me, Sir Auron. I'm no summoner."
"Are you sure?" He brushed the fringe of black hair away from her face.
She arched an eyebrow at him. "Hm?"
"Drawing life from a statue is a summoner's gift."
"Hush." She traced a fingernail against his cheek, a caress paralleling his scar. "No flattery, either. You'll spoil your reputation as a curmudgeon."
"Your reputation is also in jeopardy."
"Our secret, then," she said, drawing him down for another exchange of friendly fire. Tongues feinted and danced, the same give-and-take as when swordsman lashed out with a break attack, then sidestepped to let her magic finish the job. His spine arched as she sent a splash of snow across the small of his back.
"Stop that," he said.
"Is this better?" A shower of sparks prickled his shoulderblades.
He cupped a hand over her neck, feeling the pulse leap beneath his thumb. "Superfluous," he said. "You don't need magic."
"No, I just need—" she broke off with a faint moan as he began to nibble a line down from her throat to her stomach. "—that."
There was a different sort of magic in the way she squirmed beneath him, belly trembling under his mouth as he sampled her white skin. Her heels scrabbled against his back as he prowled her body with lips and teeth, seeking spots that made her gasp. Barely understanding what drew him (a powerful scent, not of the Farplane, but its polar opposite), he slid down between her legs. He nipped and kissed her soft inner thighs until her hands were twisting in his hair, mutely begging.
Benediction. Sometimes in the heat of battle, when sinew and sword and enemy's spine met in perfect, deadly communion, he rediscovered the rapture he had felt as a novice monk listening to hymns soaring in the bell-like dome of St. Bevelle. But that was destruction, or, worse, lies. This was a different sort of euphoria. Lulu's heat, taste, scent and husky sighs were intoxicating. He barely minded the sharp nails digging into his shoulders as she clutched at him, writhing shamelessly for her own pleasure.
Pleasure. It was alien to them both, but they seemed to have found a way to it. She was close to its peak, to judge by her shuddering breaths. Auron was finding it increasingly difficult to remain on his stomach. He sat up with a grunt, reaching for her hands and lifting her towards him.
Her whimper of protest softened to a purr as he pulled her in for another passionate kiss. He skimmed a hand down her back, drawing her onto his lap. She knelt over him and laced her arms loosely around his shoulders, breaths quickening in anticipation. Holding her lust-filled gaze, he reached down, massaging his thumb against her as he guided himself in. Her welcoming moan was delicious.
They rocked together, Lulu rolling over him sensuously. Her unraveling braids swung against the small of her back, tickling his thighs. He palmed her breasts, squeezing and caressing them. Conscious thought crumbled away. When Lulu finally stiffened over him, hanging for a trembling second before her hips slammed down like thundaga, he was lost. Auron groaned and ground into her with shuddering jerks, forgetting for a few precious seconds the irrevocable gulf that separated them.
Embracing, they sank into slow, sensual kisses. A few final twinges of pleasure caused minor upheavals as they came down from the heights. Finally Lulu slumped against him, panting and spent. He slipped out but not away, holding her loosely.
Auron traced her collarbones with his thumb, noting how the early morning sunlight and shadows accentuated the lines of her shoulders. Her skin was cooling, damp with perspiration. "Will you be all right?"
Lulu's lips brushed his cheek. "Will you?"
"Hmph." He started to answer, then realized she meant something more than exhaustion over a night's ill-advised liaison. "I don't know. I've been avoiding...leaving... for a long time."
"Have Yuna send you." The words were fierce and quick.
He stiffened, but perplexity trumped irritation – or maybe it was just the smell of her warm, vital body turning everything upside down. "You want me sent?"
"Absolutely not, but—" She exhaled, lifted her head, and had the courage to smile. "I don't relish the thought of fighting you like Lady Ginnem. When the time comes, go. Don't look back."
"Of course." It was no longer of course, exactly, but he understood: Lulu was releasing him lest she shackle him. He pressed one final kiss against her brow. "Come. Yuna needs her guardians."
Efficient as always, they gathered their belongings and re-girded themselves, settling into proper personas. They said not a word on the lift-ride down, exchanging only a nod when they parted.
One moment. There would not be time for another, before the pilgrimage's close.
Well, maybe one more, Auron thought with a hidden smile, watching the swing of the mage's hips as she glided off.