The Quistis Files Ch. 1

When Cid told the new SeeD's that a ball was being held in their honor, Squall sighed loudly.

GreatÖ he thought, his mood souring further. He didnít expect anyone to look up to him as everyone seemed to have been doing during his time at the Academy, and he didnít enjoy the extra attention. He saluted the headmaster as he leaned closer and whispered to him.

"Finally, a gunblade specialist."

It's nothing special. Just my weapon of choice. Seifer is just as good as me, despite hisÖ attitude. Squall watched as the other students filed out of the office and chose to stay behind, if only to get out of riding the overcrowded elevator with the over-enthusiastic students. He approached the headmaster and coughed to get his attention as he conversed with the ever-present garden officials. Cid looked up and smiled, grinning broadly through his wrinkled face.

"Ah, Squall. I have something for you," he dug into the pockets of his pants and brought out a small black object that resembled a small computer, "Its called a Battle Meter. Itís a very useful source of information related to battles and different problems you may encounter on your journey."

He handed it to Squall, who accepted it and bowed slightly, without comment. The elevator rung behind him, and he gratefully accepted the excuse to leave.

He caught up with the others at the hallway entrance to the classrooms and was surprised to see the disciplinary committee along with some of the other students who failed to pass the test waiting for them. Siefer started applauding, and soon everyone had joined in.

Squall scratched his head, and headed towards his class, leaving a bashful Zell and an excited Selphie behind, along with the other shy student he couldnít remember the name of. Instructor Quistis looked up as he walked in, a smile beaming through her face.

"Congratulations Squall. I knew you would become a SeeD."

She motioned for him to come in from the doorway, and Squall complied hesitantly. He walked up and slipped the battle meter into his pocket unceremoniously before she could ask about it.

"UmÖ Headmaster Cid didnít mention what time the Ball startsÖ"

He started, carefully keeping a bland look on his face. Quistis smiled and pushed a small yellow piece of paper to him, that had the time and days of several events listed on it.

"1900 hours, sharp. Donít be late. You might miss some of the ladies."

She smiled as he shifted uncomfortably on his feet, looking down at his boots and not commenting. She nudged him towards the door, smiling playfully.

"Get going. You need to change into your uniform before the ball."

Squall nodded and left quickly, walking past Siefer and his gang before they could say anything and pushed the button for the elevator to the first floor.

Squall walked up the hall towards his room, his thoughts on the dreadful upcoming ball and was soured even more to see Selphie waiting for him in his room.

"Hey Squall? How do I look?"

She twirled around in her new tailored SeeD outfit, prancing like the over-enthusiastic kid she was, grinning the whole time.

Squall entered his room without comment and quickly changed into his clothes, returning to where Selphie waited.

"Ooh, you look pretty dashing in that outfit. Now come on, lets paaaartay!"

Squall leaned against the wall and accepted a glass of champagne from a passing waitress, and watched the dancers twirling by him. After a short time of peaceful quiet, Selphie ran over, smiling excitedly.

"Hey, Squall! Could you do me a big favor and join the Garden Festival Committee? I mean, I know we're going to be doing big SeeD stuff, but we could work on it in between."

He looked at her closely, and saw that she was very serious about putting on the party, so he nodded his head.

"Yes. I see that you are very serious about the festival."

She jump up and twirled around excitedly, beaming.

"Thanks Squall! Got's to go!"

No sooner had she bounced off did Zell walk over, pausing frequently to punch at the air.

"Hey Squall, put it there."

Squall looked at his outstretched hand and made no movement, then took a sip out of his glass.
Zell got the idea and withdrew his hand, scratching the side of his head.

"Great party, huh."

He said, trying to get a reaction out of Squall. Squall continued to ignore the enthusiastic blonde, and stared ahead at the dancers.

"Well, I have to go. They brought out the hotdogs!"

He ran off, periodically flipping or punching. Squall shook his head, then looked at the sky as a sparkle caught his eye. A shooting star passed, and he saw a young lady point at it as she watched it with him. Her long dark brown hair shook slightly as she walked towards him, smiling.

"Hey, you're the best looking guy here. Iím Rinoa."

She said, smiling. Squall blushed a little, and was immediately annoyed with himself. She didnít give up though, and continued standing in front of him. She was pretty, but he had a reputation to keep up.

"Would you like to dance?"

She asked, motioning to the dance floor, where the dancers had stopped momentarily to wait for the orchestra to start their next song.

"Oh, I get it. You'll only dance with someone you like. Ok, you're going to like me, you're going to like me..."

She made circling motions with her hands in front of his face as if casting a spell, smiling to him the whole time. Squall felt himself blushing further and shook his head.

"I canít dance."

He said bluntly, hoping she wouldnít leave him right there and then. She laughed, a soft sound like the whispering wind, and was soon bent over, clutching her stomach.

"Come on. Just do what I do. I'll lead."

She grabbed his hand and pulled them out onto the dance floor, where the orchestra started playing "Waltz of the Moon." She put her hand in his and his other hand around her waist, then began the waltz, sidestepping, and Squall tried to mimic her, and managed only to step on her velvet shoes instead. Still, she just smiled and motioned for him to continue. Clumsily, he tried to remember the last time Quistis had convinced him to dance with her, and managed only to bring himself and Rinoa to go crashing into another couple, and received dirty looks from the pair.

"Donít worry... you can do it."

She whispered as the music swung into a full waltz. Finally, they began to dance, Squall mastering the steps correctly, keeping his attention on Rinoa's beautiful face. Just as the music concluded, fireworks went off above them, and they stopped near each other to look up at the display. Suddenly Rinoa saw something over his shoulder, and reluctantly walked away from him towards the headmaster, motioning for him to stay there. Squall looked after her, trying not to let his emotions reach his expression as disappointment welled up from inside him.

He walked to the balcony, away from the party, and heard the click of boot heels behind him.


He heard instructor Quistis sigh, and walk closer.

"So, my best student is also an excellent dancer."

Squall said nothing, and continued staring at the gardens below the balcony.

"So you'll dance with a perfect stranger and you wont dance with me?"

She asked, a hint of.. some emotion he couldnít identify behind it. He turned around and looked at her, dressed up in a silken blue dress. She looked, he realized, beautiful when she wasnít wearing her uniform.

"I've danced with you before, instructor. Besides, its not proper to dance with one's teacher."

He said, keeping all emotions from his face. Quistis frowned, sadness suddenly replacing the wry smile she had.

"Iím not your teacher anymore. Now come on, lets dance."

She grabbed his arm and pulled him back onto the dance floor. He futilely tried to excuse himself, saying that the first dance had worn him out, but she insisted. Soon they were in full swing, matching the rhythm of the other dancers perfectly. Squall looked around for Rinoa as they danced, and realized that it didnít matter. He looked back at Quistis, in her blonde splendor, her hair let loose to fly down her shoulders and back.

Soon the dance came to a close, and Squall excused himself before Quistis could notice how much he had enjoyed dancing with her or the red tone of his face.

It doesnít matter if I like her or not. She's still my teacher. Besides, Iím a SeeD now, I canít worry about that right now....

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