Summary: The war won with minimal deaths, Cobra and Jellal both face the impending chances of being executed. But they both knew that their last night could only be spent with their respective other halves.
Thanking the white-haired barmaid (Mirajane, was it?), Cobra quietly exited the tent, letting the flapping ends close behind him as he gingerly touched his freshly-wrapped wounds. Avoiding all the gazes of the nearby mages, he strolled down the middle of the campsite and towards the forest’s fringe. His now coat hung around his form, the white stark against his tanned skin.
Reaching his destination, he was scarcely surprised to find the ultramarine, Jellal Fernandes, leaning against a tree and staring up at the rising sun, his own body shrouded in bandages. Of course, he knew that the man was there for the same reason as he was: silent solace.
"Can’t be bothered hanging around them?" The dragon-slayer asked with a slight chuckle, coming to lean against the neighboring tree. Jellal half-smirked, glancing at the new arrival before turning his attention to the camp.
"Not so much that, but I’m not necessarily wanted there by many people," a soft smile followed his words. "The council get to you too?"
"Yeah," closing his eyes and rubbing his temples, Cobra remembered the words of the councilmen: ‘we will decide your fate tomorrow’. “Guess we have one night to do whatever the hell we need to do, huh?”
A certain redhead’s face flashed through Jellal’s mind, but said man shook his head and looked down at the ground. Cobra glanced over at his company, an eyebrow raising.
"You and Scarlet have a fling going on or something? Make sure to use protection, buddy."
"We do not," Jellal denied it firmly, but anybody could hear the sadness and regret in his tone.
"Y’know," the burgundy-haired man started, shifting his weight onto his other foot. "Our lives are too short to regret anything, right?"
Jellal tore his gaze away from the emerald-green blades of grass to stare at the poison-using man. “Are you implying something, Cobra?”
He didn’t respond for a moment, his own friend’s face flashing through his mind. Maybe he should pay her a visit. “Yeah. Don’t…leave her wondering what could’ve been, y’know? It’s either yes or no.”
"But it’s not that easy for us, huh?" Jellal argued, crossing his arms and leaning his arm against the old tree’s trunk. He could tell that the man also had someone dear to him, held in the same regard that he held Erza. The least he could do was try and help, right?
Cobra laughed hollowly, bitterly, nodding in acceptance. “Guess it’s depends on how much trust we have in our other half. Well, if you’d excuse me, I have someone I need to go…talk to.”
Jellal nodded, and both of them pushed off the trunks. “Same.”
Cobra walked through the camp, desperately in search of his friend. He had checked every tent up to this point and now he was in the more deserted part of the camp. With a sigh of utter disappoint, he threw open the flaps to the last tent in the final row and looked inside.
And let his heart stop.
There, sitting on the inflatable mattress with her dress ripped to the point where it could be called a tank-top was his childhood friend in her human form.
Upon hearing the tent’s flaps move, Kinana glanced up and inhaled sharply when she saw who had entered. Before she could say anything, though, Cobra settled down beside her, his hand coming up to stroke her face softly. Letting the whisper of his name die on her lips, she leaned into his touch and closed her eyes, scooting closer to his burning body.
Cobra took in her bruised arms with a look of concern, a fierce protection rolling through him when he realized she had barely nothing covering her form.
A certain possessiveness shot through his core, and he couldn’t help but stiffen at the realization that others had seen her like this. Other eyes other than his had probably trailed down his friend’s body and had taken in her bountiful assets. Decidedly, he took off his cloak and wrapped around her form, watching it engulf her petite figure.
"Cobra…you were here?" She whispered, gazing up at him. He smiled softly, pulling her close and holding her against his bare chest. Her responding touches were timid, shy even, as the girl wrapped her arms around his neck as she pressed herself even further into his grasp. The coat now covered both of them, but all he could concentrate on was how perfectly she fit into his arm.
"Yes, I’m sorry I didn’t find you earlier," he responded. Lifting his head up to stare down at her fondly. She smiled up at him, her hands moving on their own to come up and hold his face.
"I…missed you Cobra," she whispered softly. He bent forward, their foreheads touching, before he locked eyes with her and dipped down, closing his lips over her mouth.
It was like nothing either of them had experienced before. Sparks flying, he gently pressed her up against the sturdy wall of the tent, letting out a soft hiss once he felt her legs come up to wrap themselves around him.
It was their last night, but it would be perfect.
Jellal found Erza alone in one of the tents far-off from the central area where everyone else was, her own body wrapped in nothing but bandages. He couldn’t help but breathe in sharply at how beautiful she looked.
"Jellal?" Erza looked up and found the man standing at the front of the tent, watching her. Smiling in an uncertain fashion, she gestured for him to come and join him on the mattress.
Moving in, he sat down and observed his childhood lover, taking in the tiredness in her eyes. Oh, how he wished he could take it away.
Suddenly overtaken by the brewing emotions within his chest and the confidence Cobra had given him, Jellal shifted closer and brought his hands up to clasp onto her upper arms and gently tug her into his grasp. Complying, Erza blinked a few times before pressing her face against his chest, closing her eyes in a moment of comfort.
"Erza…" he breathed. "I…I most definitely don’t deserve someone like you who walks-no, is one with the light, but even if it is for just one night, can you find it within your heart to give me a chance to hold you near?"
She laughed, a choked sound. “You…idiot. I don’t care of none of that stuff, you are the only one I could, and will, ever love. I’m your’s forever, Jellal.”
His self-restraint gone, he leaned in and crashed his lips against her, pulling the redhead into his lap.
They had one night, but one night was all they needed to become one.