One Fish - Sephiroth/Zack Title: One Fish Authors:icedark_elf and skeren Characters: Zack Fair and Sephiroth Fandom: Final Fantasy Seven Theme Set: HW1 Theme: Surprised 44 Warnings and Notes: Fish. Humor. You have to read the rest.
Sephiroth: ::he knew he hadn't been out of his office -that- long, and yet things seemed to have changed in his absence. Frowning slightly, he leaned to eye the thing on his desk. there was a... jar.. of fish on his desk. Living, uncooked fish. He poked the bowl a little, it moved, the water sloshed. It didn't even look like an edible fish, so what exactly was it doing on his desk?::
Zack: Don't end up poking it off your desk. I'll be sad you killed my present to you.
Sephiroth: Why did you decide to present me with a fish? ::still eyeing it, resisting the vague urge to put his finger in the bowl and agitate the ornamental creature::
Zack: Cause it was pretty? *shakes his head* I thought you might do well with a pet of some sort. *moves into Seph's office, and looks at the fish* And fish, this kind anyway, are pretty easy to take care of, without a lot of mess. *grins at Seph* And since I have to go deal with the failures of our latest group in the field, I got one so you'll be reminded of me. *teasing voice* See, it's black and purple.
Sephiroth: ::quirks an eyebrow and looks from the fish to Zack, voice very dry:: Yes, I do see the resemblance. However, I didn't need aquatic life to help me remember you.
Zack: *snorts at him* Besides, it'll give you something to watch when someone is in here droning on and on and on.
Sephiroth: ::quirks his eyebrow:: because the fish is clearly so much more entertaining.
Zack: It's something prettier than half the people who come and harass you. And I know a lot of people who use fish for meditation. *shrugs* If you really don't want it, I'll take it for myself, but at least give it a chance.
Sephiroth: ::He sighed, tapping on the edge of the tank, which had the amusing side effect of making the fish flit around inside. hmmmm. Does it more:: I suppose.
Zack: *sighs* Don't kill it before I get home, please? *grimaces* Though I'll be gone for a month. Whee?
Sephiroth: I thought the assignment was only to be two weeks ::small frown, then shakes his head:: I will not kill the animal before you return.
Zack: It was. Till yesterday. *makes a face* I'm surprised you hadn't heard yet.
Sephiroth: As am I ::frowns, looking to Zack:: I really must check to be sure the chain of command is working properly still.
Zack: Word is it came from high up. I don't know, though. *leans against Seph's desk* All I do know is that I'm stuck with our lovely group of psych rejects.
Sephiroth: ::gives the wall to his left a rather sour look, then sighs out a soft breath before looking back:: I see. Is there anything you need before you leave then?
Zack: A reason not to go? *shakes his head* Not that I'm aware of. Might I toss them overboard if they start doing the dumb shit that got them sidelined from the program?
Sephiroth: Hm. I'm afraid you must say 'sir' to make that an official request Fair.
Zack: *quirks a brow at him, then flicks him with fish water* Yes, Sir.
Sephiroth: ::hums, twisting a bit to avoid the liquid, mostly, though has to collect a napkin to wipe at a few spots anyway:: Was that to officiate the question then?
Zack: Sure. *another flick of water* So, now that you know I'm going to be gone longer, gonna miss me?
Sephiroth: ::frowns down at the water spots and dabs them again:: I suppose I should. ::glances back to the man::
Zack: *dry tone* Thank you, Seph. I guess that's my cue to leave, as I have to get the last of the gear situated, as well as go over the latest recon. We're leaving later today. *snags his hair and gives it the lightest of tugs* Don't let any socialite latch onto you while I'm gone, okay? *heads for the door.*
Sephiroth: ::starts slightly:: I had no intention of doing any such thing. I expect you back in timely fashion.
Zack: *grins back over his shoulder* I'll try not to get myself shot, Seph. So I should be back right on time.
Sephiroth: ::frowns after him:: I'll expect you at the appropriate hour then.
Zack: *gives him a smile, vaguely pleased at the look on Seph's face. Ah, made a man feel like he was cared for.* Later, Seph. *heads out to go deal with the last of the issues before leaving.*
Sephiroth: ::decides the fish was at fault for his being behind the man in the conversation today. Glares at it, then settles to pick through his papers. Hmph.::
Zack: *was tired, irritated, and really, really wanted a bath that involved -hot- water. Still, has to go report in to Seph.*
Sephiroth: ::was there, finishing up a few things, and glances over when he hears the door open, feeling something in his spine relax a bit:: Zack. I see you're whole.
Zack: *sighs* Not for lack of trying. *looks at his desk* Hey, you changed fish bowls. *goes to look at the new one.*
Sephiroth: ::studying Zack closely for any possible injury:: The other was inefficient.
Zack: *glances up at him, then notices something else* And... you got more fish? *goes to look at those as well, pleased. Discovered a hobby Seph might like?*
Sephiroth: So it would appear, yes. ::shifts his gaze from his body to his face, gauging the extent of his reaction::
Zack: *is smiling* That's good. I guess you decided they weren't so bad after all? *looks back at him with a grin, then straightens, back popping* Ow.... Anyway, managed to not pitch anyone overboard. Barely.
Sephiroth: ::small frown:: Shame.
Zack: So, gain any leeches while I was gone? *moves to snag the free chair in the room*
Sephiroth: No more than the typical number ::quirks an eyebrow and shakes his head:: You need to rest.
Zack: I will. *runs a hand through his hair* Food and a bath, first. *stomach makes a noise in agreement* Definitely food.
Sephiroth: ::studies him, then lets out a soft breath:: Do you have a paper report or a verbal one?
Zack: *waves the folder at him* See, I win for once. Here. *gives it to Seph* Now I don't have to type it up later.
Sephiroth: ::stares at him:: what did they -do- to you while you were gone?
Zack: What? *blinks at him in confusion*
Sephiroth: ::sets the report to the side and leans partially over his desk:: you must be completely exhausted.
Zack: *snorts at him* Love you too, Seph.
Seph: ::just hums and quirks an eyebrow at him:: You must, it's the only explanation.
Zack: Is that your subtle way of telling me to go?
Sephiroth: No. That's my subtle way of asking if you've slept since I last saw you.
Sephiroth: ::quirks an eyebrow:: and if you've eaten.
Zack: *grins. Ha! Turn Seph's own Sephness against him* Yes.
Sephiroth: And if you had to use a healing materia on yourself while you were gone due to your troops.
Zack: *quirks a smile at him* Yes.
Sephiroth: Did you reprimand the cause?
Zack: Yes. *grins at him*
Sephiroth: Are you having fun Zack?
Zack: A bit. You answer questions like this all the time, so I thought I'd see what the appeal is.
Sephiroth: And have you?
Zack: Yep. It's fun.
Sephiroth: Shame you realized, I suppose now I will have to do something drastic to ruin the memory.
Zack: *chuckles* Now, what would you do to achieve that?
Sephiroth: ::ponders this a moment, then stands and leans over his desk to run his fingertips down along the side of the man's face:: You recall nothing.
Zack: *long pause, then just cracks up.*
Sephiroth: ::nods, then simply resettles himself in his chair as though he did nothing out of the ordinary::
Zack: *chuckles more* On that note, I'm going to get food. So to my apartment I go. Want to come with?
Sephiroth: ::considers for a moment, then nods again:: I believe that would be perfectly acceptable, yes.
Zack: *grins at him, then makes a face* It's going to be fun. I don't think I have much left here. Have to go shopping tomorrow.
Sephiroth: After you rest. ::finishes writing something down, then rises to his feet:: shall we?
Zack: *nods* Hope you don't mind dried soup.
Sephiroth: ::shakes his head slightly:: That's fine. If I want something else, I have a better variety in my rooms.
Zack: *shrugs* I had to get rid of everything before I left that might have gone bad. *he gave Seph an amused look* And aren't you the lucky one?
Sephiroth: ::quirks an eyebrow:: Were you not wanting the soup?
Zack: *shrugs* I'm hungry. It'll do. Least till I get some real food.
Sephiroth: ::hums and nods:: As you like then. I could have fed you, if you wanted something else.
Zack: *eyes him* Is that an offer?
Zack: *just gives Seph a look. Either it was or it wasn't.*
Sephiroth: ::hums softly and rises to his feet:: Shall we?
Zack: *studies him a moment more and does the same, just shaking his head a bit* Soup is easy enough, I suppose. Then I guess I can sleep after that. *moves for the door*
Sephiroth: ::just shakes his head and comes around the desk to move towards the door:: Honestly. Come along Zack, I'll feed you something more substantial than that.
Zack: So it was an offer. *grin at him*
Sephiroth: That was the intention. ::quirks an eyebrow::
Zack: See, now you are just being evil.
Sephiroth: Ah, good, that means things are returning to normal.
Zack: *reaches over and pats the top of Seph's head* Too tired for evil now, Seph. If you plan on continuing this trend for the next several hours, I'll hide with the soup and what very little is left of my sanity.
Sephiroth: I doubt I would be so unkind Zack. Surely you would not think me capable of such cruelty? ::tiny eyebrow quirk and ushers him along down the hall.::
Zack: I know you are, Seph. *small smile*
Sephiroth: True. Is there any food in particular you were hoping for?
Zack: Something not burnt? Or raw? *wistful tone*
Sephiroth: No vegetables then. ::shoos him into the elevator and follows him::
Zack: Cute, Seph. Cute. *goes where shooed*
Sephiroth: ::keys in for his floor:: You said nothing raw, I can avoid that easily enough.
Zack: *just shakes his head with a smile* You are in a good mood.
Sephiroth: ::pauses for a moment:: I have cause to be.
Zack: Oh? *watches him*
Sephiroth: ::merely looks sideways at him:: We need to get you fed.
Zack: *blinks at him. Well, -that- wasn't an answer.* All right.
Sephiroth: ::quirks his lips:: Now, I know you're tired.
Zack: *makes a confused sound at him* What?
Sephiroth: ::just shakes his head and reaches over to brush his arm with his fingertips as the elevator reaches his floor:: Come along.
Zack: That's totally not an answer. *follows anyway*
Sephiroth: I know. That's why I know you're tired.
Zack: Remind me to kick you in the shin later.
Sephiroth: After I feed you?
Zack: At some point in the next few days. *dry tone*
Sephiroth: I suppose that will have to do ::heads off down the hall to open his door:: In you go.
Zack: *yawns as he follows, then pauses when he actually steps through the door* That's.... *was a -lot- of fish. What the hell?*
Sephiroth: Yes? ::locks the door behind the man::
Zack: *is still just staring*
Sephiroth: ::looks over at the fishtanks against one wall, then back to Zack:: Zack?
Zack: *slow look around* I guess you really liked the fish?
Sephiroth: It was interesting, yes. ::decides to go get food prepared::
Zack: *drifts over to look at the tanks. There had to be a half dozen with fish, and even more empty* I'm glad you liked it....
Sephiroth: It was a good idea. ::picks something relatively simple and filling::
Zack: I have those from time to time. *tears himself from the fish and moves after Seph*
Sephiroth: I did notice that at some point, yes ::hands him a glass of juice the moment he passed the doorway::
Zack: *blinks, then takes it and snags a seat* Thank you.
Sephiroth: ::waves it off, checking on the two pans he'd set up and moving them a bit so the contents didn't try to stick::
Sephiroth: You like cubed meat don't you? ::gives the pan another check, then moves to get plates, turning them off::
Zack: *chuckles* Meat is tasty, yes. Meat you can still tell is meat is even better.
Sephiroth: Why would you eat it if you couldn't identify what it had been? ::dishes up plates::
Zack: *quirks a brow* You vaguely recall that there was a war, yes? I was happy we -got- food half the time.
Sephiroth: True, though typically if I couldn't identify it, I gave it to someone else, usually you towards the end.
Zack: That's right. I'm your personal "I don't want it, give to you" person. *dry, dry tone*
Sephiroth: You were hungry at the time, I thought it worked well.
Zack: *vaguely amused sound, and gives Seph a grin* I suppose it did.
Sephiroth: I know it did. ::hands him a plate, keeping the other for himself.::
Zack: *takes it, picking some food off it right away. Foooood.*
Sephiroth: ::just watches him for a moment, then extends a fork at him::
Zack: *takes it and then really goes to work eating food. Yummy, yummy food*
Sephiroth: ::just shakes his head and puts another glass of juice in the man's reach before picking through his food, studying the way that Zack was sitting::
Zack: *continues to inhale the food, though pauses when he notices the way Seph was looking at him. Doesn't -stop-, but does tilt his head in question.*
Sephiroth: Merely observing.
Zack: *give a small grin, then focuses on his food again*
Sephiroth: ::hums, finishing his own, which was less, before getting up to set things in the sink::
Zack: *finishes off his food, and the juice, then carried them over to Seph* Thank you.
Sephiroth: No need to thank ::takes the items and puts them in the sink with the rest:: Are you feeling more yourself?
Zack: Just tired is all. *muffles a yawn when he said it* So, how many fish do you have?
Sephiroth: One hundred and fourteen, at present. Counting the food fish in the feeder tank. ::shoos him out of the kitchen with a brisk motion of his hand towards the doorway of it:: Go sit.
Zack: *gave a low whistle, and let himself be shooed*
Sephiroth: ::makes sure he's actually sitting before dealing with the dishes and coming out to the main room:: They surprise you that much?
Zack: Seph, when I left? You had -one-, and you didn't seem very thrilled with that one.
Sephiroth: I simply had to give it thought ::small shrug, then moves over to feed his fish. He'd been gone all day after all.::
Zack: *small laugh, settling comfortably into the corner of the couch*
Sephiroth: ::quirks an eyebrow, looking back over his shoulder:: Something funny? ::turns to go get something out of the fridge::
Zack: It's just that, *yawns in the middle of it, watching Seph with half-closed eyes* that you seemed so dismissive of it I was trying to figure out where I was going to put the fish in my apartment. Glad you decided to keep it. Even if you don't think it looks like me.
Seph: ::pads back over with a cup in hand, then crouches to dump it in one of the bigger tanks at the bottom. Whatever it was happened to be bloody.:: If you recall Zack, I was rather dismissive of you at first as well. That's hardly method to gauge my acceptance of something.
Zack: Wasn't aware you had been in a life-threatening situation with the fish, Seph.
Sephiroth: Three hours with Heidegger and a choice of fish or him to look at is quite close enough, thank you.
Zack: All right. I can buy that one. *is slooooowly sinking further into the corner of the couch*
Sephiroth: ::soft chuckle:: I'm certain. ::gets back to the kitchen to wash the cup out after resecuring the tank lid::
Zack: *shuts his eyes. Was just going to rest them for a minute*
Sephiroth: ::comes back out to the living room after a few minutes, making sure everything was put away, and then quirks an eyebrow at Zack::
Zack: *is snoozing on the corner of the couch*
Sephiroth: ::pads over and nudges Zack's feet::
Zack: *mumbles something, but doesn't fully wake up*
Sephiroth: ::arches an eyebrow, and prods him more pointedly. Lets see if he could flatten him out.::
Zack: *mutters more and cracks open an eye*
Sephiroth: Lay down Zack.
Zack: *shuts his eyes and sleepily obeys, not really paying attention anymore*
Sephiroth: ::nudges him a little until the man is situated in a way where he shouldn't wake up with any limbs gone numb, then pads to get the blanket he'd used a few weeks before, draping it over the man, though he did pause to eye the shoes. Hrm. Reconsiders the blanket for the moment to deal with those::
Zack: *more sleepy sounds, curling in on himself*
Sephiroth: ::ignores the grumbles, though is careful about getting the boots off, ignoring the rest of the attire, for the most part, before reaching to unclasp his bracer carefully, setting it on the table above his boots. Good enough. A quick check to make sure he didn't have any weapons poking out of anywhere commenced, then he draped the blanket over him. Hopefully, he hadn't roused him fully.::
Zack: *pretty much ignores the poking until his bracer went away. Makes a startled sound at that, eyes opening. What?*
Sephiroth: Safe Zack ::a murmur, and presses the covers against him more securely.::
Zack: *blinks at him for a long moment, then, slowly, settles. It was Seph, and that meant it was okay. Sleepy*
Sephiroth: ::watches him, then brushes the blanket down over his shoulders, and his hair back in the same motion:: Sleep.
Zack: *mumbles again, dozing back off*
Sephiroth: ::makes sure he isn't going to wake again, then moves off to tend to other things, making sure that his doors were well secured when he had to leave to his office again after a while::