If you don't mind, can we go on the angst train? Maybe a situation when the chocobro's s/o misunderstands something and thinks they're not wanted in the group anymore and Ardyn uses that time to influence them to join him or something. Keep up the great work!
Ooh. It’s been a while since I’ve written angst, so hopefully this turned out alright. I’m gonna use a scenario with Noctis so I can try writing for him again.
It had been a long, exhausting day. Your bones ached with every step you took, and you nearly collapsed inside the Regalia once you’d made it back to the car. You were squished in the back seat as usual between Gladio and Noctis. Normally, Noctis would wrap an arm around your shoulders and pull you in to lean against him, but today he sat with one arm propped up to hold his chin in his hand, and the other limply in his lap. His head was turned out to watch the sun set, away from you.
He was in a mood. You knew it, so instead of trying to bother him, you made yourself as small as possible in the middle rear seat.
“It’s getting dark,” Prompto noted from the front passenger’s seat. “Can we stay in a hotel this time?”
“That’s up to Noct,” Ignis replied, eyeing the young prince in the rearview mirror. Noctis just shrugged.
Ignis gave a terse nod and made quick work of finding a motel at an outpost not far from where you were. It was getting dark, and you could see daemons sprouting from the ground along the sides of the road.
When you eventually got to the outpost, Noctis mumbled something about going to check the store with Ignis for curatives. Prompto and Gladio went to find some food for all of you, so you decided to quickly take a shower at the motel before anything else.
The hot water felt good against your weary muscles, your joints cracking in protest as you stretched out under the faucet. After a long while, you begrudgingly got out of the shower and dried off. You re-dressed and went out to look for the rest of the guys.
You found them, huddled together behind the adjacent store, muttering in small voices. They hadn’t noticed you, and for some reason, you felt the need to not let your presence known.
“…shouldn’t be coming,” you heard Noctis say, from where you hid in the shadows.
“You can’t mean that,” Prompto countered, sounding extremely flustered. “You’re just gonna leave them behind, when they left everything to come with us?”
You could feel your pulse in your ears.
“Don’t you think I know that?” Noctis snapped, sighing wearily. “I can’t have any distractions. We have to take down Titan, and if they’re around—”
That’s all you needed to hear. Is that all you were to him, a distraction? You thought back to the first time Noctis had kissed you, so gentle and so shy, and in that moment you felt like your heart was going to burst. That feeling returned again this time, except for all the wrong reasons.
You turned and went back to the room to quietly gather your things, tears stinging your eyes. If Noctis didn’t want you there, then you would leave. Plain and simple. And you’d do it now, so that he wouldn’t have the satisfaction of telling you to your face that he didn’t want you anymore.
You got your bag and slung it over your shoulder. The guys still hadn’t returned, so you walked out of the motel and tried to figure out where you were going to go.
“Excuse me,” a lilting voice called to you from your side. You recognized that voice.
“Ardyn,” you replied in greeting, your lips forming a thin line as he approached.
“Well, well, my dear,” he circled you slowly, like a predator circling prey. “What seems to be the issue? You’re all alone, your bags are packed…why, I daresay it appears that you’ve decided to go solo.”
You crossed your arms over your chest, glaring into the night. “Not by choice.”
Ardyn tutted. “Such a shame,” he noted, gently placing his hands on your shoulders, standing behind you. You could feel the warmth of his body on your back. “You know, they’re afraid of your strength,” he whispered, close to your ear. “They don’t know what you’re capable of. But I do. If you come with me, I can help you channel that strength. No harm will come to you when you’re with me. You’ll be safe. You’ll be wanted.” He pulled back from you, and you turned to face him. “Would you like that?”
You gulped, and instinctively turned to where the guys were still hidden behind the store. Ardyn placed a finger on your chin and turned your face towards his.
“No harm will befall the prince or your friends,” he promised. “I merely offer you the opportunity to see where this new path leads.”
He extended his hand, a questioning look in his gaze.
After a moment, you shoved all the voices in your head to the side, and ignored the ringing in your ears. You look his hand, and said, “Alright.”