|Maella Abbey (maella_abbey) wrote,|
@ 2008-02-13 23:05:00
|Current music:||Scott Andrew - You Are Loved|
[Fic] Where I Want to Be, Angelo/Jessica
Title: Where I Want to Be
Fandom: Dragon Quest VIII
Written For: fictunes (Prompt:The Magnetic Fields - "With Whom To Dance?")
Summary: He steadfastly refused to consider the idea that Baccarat was altogether too far from Alexandria.</p>
For nearly as long as he could remember, or at least, since he'd first sweettalked his way into the Simpleton pub, Angelo had had three passions: beautiful women, fine drink, and gambling. The first he'd sworn off after his disastrous stay in Alexandria had ended scarcely two months before; the second was available almost anywhere, if one had the coin for it.
The third was also available almost anywhere, but Angelo had tired of swindling pathetically easy marks, and Pickham's dilapidated little casino was nearer than Baccarat. He hadn't even considered the monster arena until he'd practically been on the doorstep.
He thought Morrie had been remarkably kind in letting him use Eight's monster team in the arena - "thought" because Mirrie and Murrie had been sorely testing his fortnight-old resolution to avoid women at all costs, and he'd been mostly drunk during the conversation - and in the weeks since he'd managed a fairly impressive string of victories in the lower ranks.
Unfortunately, monster battles tended to be the sport of the very wealthy, and unlike them, he couldn't afford to hire monster scouts to continually bring in stronger monsters. Which meant contenting himself with minor victories, or going out and scouting the creatures on his own. </p> Of course, he could always pack up his winnings and go to Baccarat after all, but that would require going back to Peregrin Quay, which was altogether too close to Alexandria.
He steadfastly refused to consider the idea that Baccarat was altogether too far from Alexandria.
Angelo was at the bar, licking his wounds from his team's latest defeat and studying monster reports as a way to fend off Murrie's attentions - his self-control was already down to the dregs, and damn, wasn't it annoying to learn Marcello had been right about him - when a voice at his shoulder said, "You know, I really expected you to make straight for Baccarat."
"Then I'm surprised you aren't trying to capture me there."
"As if I'd go to that trouble." Jessica settled on the barstool next to him. "Morrie sent word to Eight about you using his monster team, and Eight sent word to me."
Angelo swiveled around, making a point to turn his back to her as he did so, and surveyed the crowded room. "And yet, you came alone. Shall I expect you to bully the local priest into marrying us, or expect to be knocked unconscious and returned to Alexandria against my will?"
"You do flatter yourself, don't you? I never wanted to marry you, that was Mother's idea. I did throw away a four year betrothal, after all." She shrugged. "I think she's a bit desperate to have me married off."
Angelo wasn't sure if he should be relieved or insulted; he settled on suspicious. "If you don't want to marry me, why are you here?"
Jessica rested a hand on his shoulder, turning him to face her, and either he'd forgotten just how lovely she was or she'd gone out of her way to prepare for this meeting; either way, his nearly spent self-control was fading fast. "I don't want to marry you. That doesn't mean I don't want to be with you."
"I'm not going back to Alexandria."
"No, I doubt either of us would be safe there right now. Mother was on an absolute rampage when I left; she probably would drag us into the church and have us wed." She smiled up at him. "Or I've been disowned again. I'm not quite sure where we stood when I left."
"You don't seem terribly upset by that."
"Why should I?" She laid a hand on his arm, and he made no effort to pull away. "I'm exactly where I want to be."