Porcelain Doll/Mirror Image, Suikoden III (Sasarai/Sarah)
Title: Porcelain Doll/Mirror Image Author/Artist: catdevigri Rating: G Warnings: None. Prompt: Sasarai/Sarah - fancy dress-up ball - "Care for a dance?" Word count: 1,311 Summary: Sasarai meets a mystery girl at a party. A/N: This was really fun. I should write more Sasarai/Sarah in the future! There was something familiar about that pale girl standing alone by the wall. Sasarai couldn't quite put his finger on it, but he was sure that he had met her before. She had a sort of noble bearing... but she was neither of the Lovelle nor the Orsini nor any other aristocratic family he knew.
Lucas Orsini drew his attention away from the pretty young woman with a quick double tap to the shoulder. "Nice googly eyes, Sasarai," he chuckled. Lucas, as was to be expected, was having a fine time at the celebration. It was a relatively small and quiet affair for the combined commemoration of St. Arthur's Day and the appointment of a new and perilously enigmatic bishop.
"Yes, yes," the brown-haired bishop brushed off this good-natured joking. Then it occurred to him that there might be some type of advantage to Lucas' attentions when it came to tracking down the information he sought. "Lucas, do you know that young lady?" he gestured to the other side of the room.. She had now taken a seat, but still appeared as withdrawn and quiet as before. She seemed rather like a porcelain doll placed in a dollhouse full of marionettes. While the other partygoers moved about in a lively manner, dancing, chatting, and laughing, she was stiff and still. But they, for all their flashy colors and painted faces, could not match the tranquil beauty of her white face and long-lashed eyes.
"Nope," the bishop's self-proclaimed friend answered flatly. "Never even seen her before."
"Oh, of all the people for you not to know..." Sasarai thought in frustration. Just when he was beginning to think that Lucas knew every person of note who had ever stepped through the gates of the capital he was proved wrong.
"But that does tell me one thing about her," Lucas added, perking up again. He hated to let Sasarai down. If he was ever going to get that Counsel seat, he needed to stay on the good side of as many Counsel members as possible (and hopefully have them indebted to him as well).
"What?" However immediately obvious the answer might be to Lucas, Sasarai really didn't know where he was going with this.
"Then she must be with the masked bishop. We don't know anything about him, so it stands to reason that we don't know his friends and associates." Lucas folded his arms and smiled proudly over this small bit of reasoning.
Sasarai appeared emboldened by this knowledge. "Then I suppose it's my duty as bishop to give her a warm Crystal Valley welcome." With a sparkle of determination in his eyes, he pressed through the scattered party guests, keeping his gaze securely on his goal. "Better not tell my sister about this," the priest chuckled to himself as Sasarai left. Regardless of what his youngest sister might desire, Lucas secretly wished his friend the best of luck with his mystery girl.
"Hello, Miss," Sasarai smiled, approaching her with his best and brightest expression. Over the years, many people had been won by this same face. Though Sasarai had few close friends, he was well-liked by most who knew him. Staring at this face, so familiar and yet so foreign, Sarah was not unaffected by his charm. "I hope you don't find it impolite for me to ask, but the question has been nagging me since I first laid eyes on you today- Have we met?" he inquired. "Something about you seems unmistakably familiar."
Sarah looked down at her hands, folded carefully in her lap. "Perhaps," she answered softly. She had suddenly felt embarrassed to be looking at him for so long. ...Or maybe it hadn't been long at all, but his gently focused gaze was hard for her to take. He clearly wasn't embarrassed.
"I know." Oh, if only he knew how well she knew. Master Luc talked about him and the True Earth Rune at times as the details of his plot came into focus. He was the mirror image of Luc, just as she supposed Hikusaak would also be were she ever to lay eyes on him.
"Have you danced at all tonight? It would be a shame for you to attend such a fancy affair and not enjoy it at all. It'd be a help to me too, so I don't just stand around in my dress uniform looking like a pompous fool," Sasarai spoke in a coaxing manner, mixing his urgings with self-deprecation in a humorous way. "Besides," he held out his hand, "I love this music."
Was this what it would be like if Luc could lighten up and enjoy himself? Sarah impulsively took the bishop's hand and rose to her feet. He looked just like Luc, but his tone and energy were entirely different. His smile was...beautiful. ...If only Luc would look at her like that... "I'm Sarah. And I'd be honored to dance with you." He name alone wouldn't be enough to reveal the past history she had with the Temple. It was a common enough name.
Sasarai bowed gallantly and led her to the dance floor. Luc, deep in conversation with Albert and General di Sihlo, did his best to look uninterested in Sasarai's bold move. "Why Sasarai?" he wondered, but was forced to keep his feelings to himself for the sake of appearances.
Other eyes fell on the fine couple as well. Sasarai moved well enough, but rather mechanically, with one hand on Sarah's slim waist, while she kept her hands on his shoulders, looking deeply into his eyes for a few moments before shyly looking away once again. "Sasarai is dancing?" Dios almost laughed. The bishop looked a little awkward, but he seemed to be enjoying himself well enough.
"Ooh, I love that dress," Nika squeaked, looking at Sarah's lilac gown. The dress had a very stylish cut and with her hair pinned neatly up with gold-colored pins, Sarah's stately back and neck were displayed to the other partygoers.
"Your dress is nice too," Dios assured her. "And I, for one, would love to dance with you tonight."
"While I find the offer flattering, I suggest you run that by your wife first," Nika shot back. Dios grimaced and turned away, choosing to keep his eyes on his bishop instead.
"You're a friend of the masked bishop?" Sasarai asked Sarah.
"Yes," was her terse response. Though she had little to say to him, she was happy that he kept talking. It broke the awkward tension that settled on them while she wondered if this was how Luc would look if he could open up and love her. At least it was good to have a chance to dance. It wasn't one she had often.
The air of mystery that continued to cling to Sarah had only piqued Sasarai's curiosity. He did his best to scrape together as much information about her as he could without prying impolitely. She was polite and dainty, but shy and stiff as well, holding back even as they danced. ...She smelled like violets. "Have you had any of the St. Arthur's Day cake? It's cinnamon with almonds. I wouldn't miss it if I were you."
It was funny the way he could speak so casually to a stranger about such trivial things. Sarah almost felt a laugh escape her lips, but at the last moment she stopped it.
Sasarai noticed the cracks in her facade, but instead of embarrassing his dance partner he pretended not to notice. It was not long before his cautiousness was rewarded. "I like that cake. It reminds me of when I was very young and lived near the ocean," she answered his query. Closing her pale eyes, Sarah leaned in close and placed her head on Sasarai's shoulder as they moved slower and slower with to the quiet music.