Letters: Leaisa (KH)

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There were at least a dozen now. Now and again, this feeling seized him to write a letter he knew he’d never deliver. Or maybe he would someday. Nothing with Lea was ever predictable and no one knew that better than Ïsa.

He smiled at the thought.

You’ll always be immortal to me, Lea. Obnoxious, yes, but I could never let myself forget you.

“Ïsaaaa!” The subject of his letter whined from the street, too restless to wait in the house. “You told me we gotta go, and now I’m waiting for you? Geez.”

“Be patient,” he advised from the open window.

You are as much a part of my day as the rising sun and phases of the moon. I love you, Lea.

Ïsa slid the pen into the cup on his desk, standing as he folded the paper in thirds. He could hear Lea half-singing, half-humming while he sealed the letter in an envelope. Placing it in a drawer with the others, Ïsa called down. “I’ll be down soon.”

“About time!” He waited for Ïsa with his trademark grin ready the moment he set foot outside. “Thought I was going to celebrate my birthday out here.”

Ïsa chuckled. “I can still go back inside.”

“Oh no you don’t,” Lea teased, throwing his arm around Ïsa’s shoulders and leading him down the street.

No Matter What: FFVII

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She had no idea how long the three men had kept her and Tseng there. An hour, maybe. They had only just delivered Jenova’s head to a secure location, and already they were captured and tortured to find it.

She stopped for a moment, breathless and exhausted but — she couldn’t stop now. Elena slammed her foot against the rusted hinge of her cell door for the millionth time, getting a shout that wasn’t Tseng’s for a change.

“Would you just shut her up!” It must have been the other skinny one with longer hair, not the one in charge. Yazoo, based on reports.

Taking a few shaky breaths, she yelled back. “Come in here and make me!” She’d broken the chair in there hours ago trying to make a weapon, and it worked.

They wouldn’t expect her to have a sharp chair leg when they came in. Hopefully it was Loz, the big quiet one. A surprise attack was her best bet in taking him down.

Loz hovered by the barred window in the doorway, grunting in acknowledgement. Elena hid the makeshift weapon behind her, unwilling to put it down. She’d need every second.

“What’s the matter?” Her muscles screamed, pain signalling everywhere from her first round of torture. She wasn’t foolish enough to think it was the last. “Scared of an opponent who isn’t restrained?”

Just open the door. A few seconds passed and he stepped back, walking away. “Coward! Get back here!” With each word, she beat against the door again, looking for any weak point.

They would get out of here. She rested her forehead against the cool metal of the door, just catching her breath. Only for a second. Tseng needed her.

They would get out of here. No matter what it took.

Interviewing Templar Angelo

1.) What motivated you to become a Templar Knight?

Have you seen this uniform? Rather, you must see specifically me in it.

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And besides, once I was no longer a child in the care of the abbey, where was I to go? It’s my home and so I defend it. Almost reliably.

If you wish to know more… Well, perhaps you ought to meet me for dinner to discuss it. :rose:

2.) Have you ever been in love?

Haven’t you? Love holds many forms. Fiery women, family, an easy mark… The Goddess gives us much to love in life, heh.

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3.) Did being left-handed ever cause a problem for you at the abbey?

Among the excessive gambling and shirking my responsibilities, why, they must’ve overlooked that. One should count one’s blessings, although I do lose count on occasion.

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4.) Do you think you’ll ever slow down?

You know… I hadn’t considered that! Someday, I suppose I will. Doesn’t it seem far more likely that my poor habits will catch up to me first? We shall have to wait and see.


This was originally posted as a response to prompt on Square Enix Amino.

School Starts Challenge: New Beginnings

This was made for the School Starts challenge on the O.C. Amino, and I hope you enjoy it! The OC is Balder Holt.

To see more content like this regularly, please support me on Patreon.

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“Welcome to the Eastern Institute of Technology, Balder,” the assistant said, her smile warming in the afternoon sun filtering through arched windows. The central hallway of his dorm building, he assumed.

Rich, redwood doorframes set in regal patterned wallpaper, a stately grandfather clock, and ample seating at regular intervals. Large French doors at either end of the hallway and four rooms leading off the hallway as well. Try as he might to form an opinion on the place, he could only think of how many exits there were, and how accessible they would be.

“I understand this must all feel very new to you, but I’m always here if you have any questions.” He turned to face her instead of the doors at the other end of the hall. Her graying amber-blonde braid hung over her shoulder as she tilted her head to meet his gaze behind the sunglasses.

“A map of the building,” he said, intending to ask for one.

“Oh, it’s…” She pointed to the folder in his arms, a deep green like the school flag hanging outside. “Left pocket, first page, I believe.”

“I see.” So he would make note of the ideal escape routes and combat tactics later. Better to be prepared than caught off guard. Balder adjusted his tie for the third time that hour but felt no less stifled by it. But it was the uniform, and those were the rules of the Lead– Headmistress. Headmistress. “Let’s continue.”

“Alright then,” she chimed, straightening her posture and walking up the stairs with familiar ease. Her hand slid over the railing, fair skin over dark wood and a modest gold band on her left ring finger. He wondered what her home life was like, imagining a calm, loving family. Having picnics. Planning movie nights.

And with a short, sharp breath, he re-centered on the present.

“This is your dorm building, all boys of course, and you’ll be off to the left here,” she chirped, turning on a heel toward the left hallway. “Room 214 A. Now I know you requested first floor, but this was all quite sudden, and I’m afraid this was the best we could do.” She took out the key, bronze with a circular handle and hanging from a thin metal ring, and opened the door.

“But see, it’s right next to the stairs! This is the next best thing, and we do appreciate you being so understanding.” If anything, this was better. Not so close to the door that he could be surprised by an intruder, but close enough that he could access most main areas of the building with ease.

He stood beside her and the doorway, looking into the small room. A single twin bed, another accommodation made for him. The bed was bare save for his luggage, pre-delivered as arranged with the school, and the desk sat empty. Dark blue curtains hung over the window, parted as the sun set on the campus. A piece of broad green expanse in the midst of a bustling city on the ocean.

“And you simply must love this view, don’t you? Quite lucky! Oh, here,” she offered, holding out the key. He took it gingerly, turning it over in his hand. So small, even for a key. He’d never had a locking room before.

“Now,” she began, tapping the key in his hand, “Campus Security does have a spare for emergencies, but they’ll never use it otherwise. And if you lose your key, they’ll make you a copy for $20. You can charge that to your school account, of course.”

“Confirmed,” he replied. Her eyes widened for a moment. She was afraid? …No, surprised. Her expression softened to compassion, the wrinkles at the corners of her eyes smoothing out as her smile fell. He put the key into his pocket, trying to avoid her eyes. Balder cleared his throat. “Understood, ma’am.”

“Oh, just Ellen, please.” She shook her head, her smile returning. “I’ll be your case manager, so you can call me if you need anything. You do have my number, don’t you?” He nodded once, sharply, and she let out a contented breath. “Ah, there is just one more thing I need from you, Balder.”

He drew himself up, taken aback. One more thing? He wore their uniform, held their documentation in hand, and it was his understanding that assignments would be distributed after the first day of train– classes. What could he have missed?

She held out her hand, the compassion returning to her large, hazel eyes. “Your sunglasses, please.”

“My–” His breath caught, brows furrowing. He took a step back and set the folder down on the desk. “Is this an order?”

“No, Balder.” Firm, but a tenderness to her words that stuck to him like barbs. Why did her concern hurt? “But those… They are from your time as a child soldier, are they not?” His heartbeat picked up in his chest, resonating through his limbs. “Do you think it wise to keep them, knowing what they represent to you?”

He was being asked his opinion. This was his choice. Sweat lined his palms already, but a cool stillness lodged in his chest. What was this feeling? Balder reached up for the arm of the glasses, leaving his eyes closed as he slipped the sunglasses off his face.

When he did open his eyes, he stared at the glasses in his hand. “I was not designed for this, Ellen.”

She rested her hands beneath his, cupping his fingers gently. Her skin was soft, more practiced with books than with brutality. Not like his. “No one was truly designed for anything, Balder. Every step in life is a choice, a new beginning. Should you be ready to take it.”

He felt his eyes turning to her, resting on her face for what seemed like the first time. The golden sunlight catching the silvery streaks in her hair, bronzing the brown flecks in her eyes, and adding a radiance to her. The chill left his body, and the stillness remained in its place. Perhaps this was comfort.

“And there is no shame in not being ready. Take your time,” she advised, closing his hand around the glasses. “And know you always have someone to turn to, Balder.” She moved towards the hallway, pausing before she closed the door. “Your first class is in the Franklin building at 9:00 am tomorrow, don’t forget!” She gave a light, graceful wave as she left, the door clicking shut behind her.

Several minutes passed after her short heels thumped down the stairs, and Balder remained as he was when she left. “A choice,” he breathed to himself. “I have a choice.”

He opened the shallow middle drawer of the desk, leaving the sunglasses inside. He was Balder Holt, freshman at the Eastern Institute of Technology. This was his new beginning.

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Thank you for reading!

To see more content like this regularly, please support me on Patreon.

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© Jam Blute, 2017

Flash Friday

Time was a figment in a lab. Talia stood between an office chair and the stainless steel table, files stacked in neat piles and samples in vertical racks. The clock on the wall read 23:09, but the lights above held a steady morning glow.
She ran a hand through her cropped hair and set back to work. Dr. Folante had done thorough research in expansive studies. Years passed with subjects entering, sometimes fading, all before Talia could catch up.

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[Copyrighted © February 5, 2016, Jam Blute]

Flash Friday

It’s kind of a sad story, but there’s a pet bird in it. Silver lining.
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This stretch of city, tight and dark, was home to people like Runt. He blended in with a worn sack over one shoulder and a carrier’s “uniform”. None of them were ever truly the same, but there were enough common elements to make it close enough. Dirt stains spotted his clothing, which was padded in places for a fight-or-flight situation, and Runt never went without a hidden knife or two.

Or three.

He traversed knotted alleyways with native familiarity, winding up in the peddler’s stretch. Some good wares, some hot, and it was a task to tell the difference. Mess up, and you’d disappear with the real thief.

But he knew a guy, as Runt always did, and he wove through the crowd to a covered cluster of tables and barrels. Suo had done well for herself, scraping by to finally settle in peddler’s stretch. The fog of incense floated around her stand, and Runt crossed through it on his way in.

“Suo,” he greeted as he reached the back, and a gaunt man locked his sunken eyes on him immediately. He was tall, lankly, and his shirt hung loose from his scratched up neck. He sat where Suo normally perched on her table, chittering to her bird.

“What you on about? Shop or leave.” The man’s watery eyes fixed on Runt, waiting. To his right, Suo’s bird squawked inside a cage, pecking at the bars. People came and went in this city, here more than ever. Happened dozens of times to friends and strangers alike.

He wondered what this man framed her for, or what bribe he accepted. Might be just this shop she fought so hard for, a gathering of tables and everything Suo made herself. Not anymore, obviously.

Runt nodded to the bird. “How much?”
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[Copyrighted © January 29, 2016, Jam Blute]

Surprise Saturday

Yikes, it’s been forever.
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“Mr. Barnett,” she spoke, breaking the padded silence of the waiting room.

He continued filling in the sudoku puzzle book he got years ago and only just now started. Pace had a lot on his plate at any given moment, but some of them were sweet. And these easy puzzles reminded him that he was a genius. How could that be anything but sweet?

“Mr. Barnett,” the woman patiently repeated. “The doctor will see you now.”

“Hm,” he answered, looking up. It finally clicked – that was him. No one used his legal name, and Mr. Barnett was his father anyway. “Right, I’m coming.”

He grabbed the pen and book, standing to meet the nurse for his psychiatrist’s office. ‘His’ used loosely – he saw a new one often enough, cycling through just in case. But Dr. Gertler was a staple. She knew what he wanted, what he needed, and he trusted her.

That made him want to throw up a little, but trust was trust.
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[Copyrighted © January 16, 2016, Jam Blute]

Surprise Saturday

These are getting less surprising as we go.
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Her mother always said to be careful in parking garages. Alex whistled as she passed 2B, 2C, and 3A to her van wedged in section 3B. Luckily this client paid well for deliveries or she wouldn’t deal with this mess.
The van’s lights flashed when she unlocked it, and that’s when she heard him. On the opposite side of the van, he almost fell over getting up, but Alex was already there. A hospital band on his left wrist, his hood pulled over white hair, and a hunch like he could make himself smaller. Alex shook her head.
“You lost, kid?” It was a mall parking garage at 5:00 a.m., and this kid looked fresh from rehab. She’d made worse mistakes and gotten out fine.
“No,” he rasped, breathing shakily. “I’m where I need to be.”
“That right?” She stepped forward and he tensed, but not in fear. She finally his eyes, red irises looking out at her. No drug did that, or at least none she knew.
“You need a place to go, kid, I know ’em all. Name what you need and I’ll take you there.” She nodded to the van. “First ride’s free.”
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[Copyrighted © November 7, 2015, Jam Blute]

Slug Sunday

This week’s belated post is brought to you by my over-excitement during my first Halloween handing out candy.
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Commuters boarded and left as she sat there, reading and doing puzzles in last week’s paper. An earthquake across the sea kills two hundred people. Four businesspeople sit and talk into cell phones, never once seeing where they are before they’re off again. The economy is improving, studies say. A college couple makes out on the other end of the car, finally stumbling out on the stop for the orange line. The sun goes down and neon signs turn on. Another row filled in Sudoku, and twelve down is ‘era’. These were Dana’s connections to the world. By choice.
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[Copyrighted © November 1, 2015, Jam Blute]

Slug Sunday

You’ve seen Flash Friday, you’ve heard of Surprise Saturday. Now you have #SlugSunday. You’re welcome. ❤
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The world betrayed him. It had been as simple as it had been efficient. In the course of a few months, he lost everything to exile in the swamps. Even that exile was stolen, a precious gift he had to take or else die. Rahim, deposed King of Sand, sleeping in a humid swamp hut and dreaming, dreaming sweet nightmares.
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[Copyrighted © October 25, 2015, Jam Blute]