Disclaimer: Characters belong to their respectful owners
Fandom: Fate/Grand Order
Pairing(s): Siegfried x Karna
Genres: fanfiction, fluff, humor, genderbent
Characters: Siegfried, Karna, Arjuna, Jing Ke, original characters
“Key words: ‘you think’, Archer. Nausea isn’t equivalence of morning sickness.”
Perhaps it was the unique way the Chaldean summoning system worked, perhaps it was the leylines on which Chaldea was built, no one really knew but the longer the membership of a Servant at Chaldea extended, the more sensitive to the presences of other Chaldean inhabitants they became. Karna had been summoned for more than a year, and so, his senses had been honed to the point he could accurately tell if the coming individual was a fellow Servant, a staff member, an ally Master or his own. If he had to put it into words, he’d say each individual emitted a distinct ‘aura’ that was invisible to the naked eyes but vivid to the third eye – the spiritual ‘eye’, and Servants, brought to this world and given physical form by magical energy, was keen on that by nature.
For example, the aura manifesting behind his back was an aquamarine flame that was warm and comforting rather than scorching. Like the fire burning low in the fireplace to keep the place from the wintry chill.
A gauntleted hand caressed his cheek and despite the hard and cold exterior, Karna found himself leaning in the touch.
“It has completely dried, hasn’t it?” Siegfried said.
“Ah,” Karna agreed, “in this kind of weather, water vaporizes quickly.”
Even though it was only for a short while, Karna relished in the feeling of being in his true skin again. Being turned into a female might not hamper his battling capability or restraint his movement in any way, but that didn’t mean he was comfortable in that form, and he didn’t think any individual in his shoe could be. It was just unnatural, and he had learned from a young age that going against the natural way of things tended to not have a pleasant outcome. Still, there was nothing he could do to fix this problem aside from waiting patiently for the dawn to come and they could set off on their journey to find a fixed solution. The hot water was merely temporary and he couldn’t, even if he wanted to, have a kettle of water by his side 24/7 ready to empty over his head.
“It’s amusing to think that I’ve gotten wet thrice in the day, one by accident, one by purpose and one by self-inflict.”
Siegfried sniggered. “None of us has seen it coming. The little lady sure has astonishing stealth, perhaps rivals Assassin’s Presence Concealment.”
“What a peculiar situation we’ve found ourselves in.”
Siegfried had sat down beside Karna on the wooden steps leading to the small porch. Though the possibility of getting attacked by monsters was relatively low, they still thought it’d be better to keep watch. Naturally, the two Servants, who needed not sleep, had taken on the guarding task.
“Has Master gone to sleep?” asked Karna.
“Yes, he should be sound asleep by now. He was pretty tired though he said nothing of it.”
With a silent nudge, Siegfried urged Karna to lean on his shoulder. The Indian Heroic Spirit received the message and wordlessly obliged, resting his head on Siegfried’s shoulder, where the armor had been dispersed in order to provide comfort. The winds, which supplied temporary respite from the heat, blew Karna’s spiky yet soft hair. The moon looked as sharp as a well-whetted sickle on the velvety sky. The atmosphere was engulfed in comfortable silence save occasional cries of cicadas. Siegfried smiles contently, stroking a turf of Karna’s hair that was rebelling against the rest. When they were together it was mostly like this: few words were exchanged, just a serene quietness to compensate for a long, arduous day of traveling through time and space battling monsters and whatnots to save an incinerated world that was somehow save-able.
When Siegfried started to think his partner had fallen asleep – Karna had a fondness for sleep, the Lancer suddenly broke the silence. “I was pondering,” Karna said, “what if whatever lies at the mountain top we find tomorrow still cannot revert my condition back to normal.”
During dinner, Mr. Shou had told the group of Master and Servants about the mountain in the far north, where he had been suspected to be the origin of those slimy monsters. However, he had lack the necessary manpower to face whatever made their home in the mountain to investigate. That was where Rhys’s group came in. With the powers of two legendary heroes (though Mr. Shou knew not of this), brawling should not be a matter.
Siegfried opened his mouth, words of reassurance ready to pass from his lips and yet, he swallowed them back, thinking about how shallow they would sound to both of their ears. Despite them being his words, he had not the confidence to imbue them with, thus making them superficial, and Karna was never one to favor substanceless words; he’d see right through them, and be upset by them. Still, Siegfried just knew not what should be said if not words of reassurance. He stayed silent, feeling his skin crawling with anxiety.
Thankfully, Karna, perhaps seeing through his inner turmoil, said, “If it is inevitable, I guess I have no other choice but to accept it. It would take a while, but I think eventually I would learn to live with it, and everyone else would accept it. Eventually.”
When he said “everyone”, his cool eyes focused entirely on Siegfried’s, and the Dragon Slayer suddenly felt the intense heat of the sun beneath the skin of his cheeks.
He didn’t need to think because who needed to think when they spoke the truth, and what he was about to say was nothing sort of the truth, which had always lied in his heart since the very instance he became aware of his affection towards a certain Heroic Spirit.
“I’ve already said it before but I want to say it again,” Siegfried began, intentively studying Karna’s expression as he did. “The first time we crossed weapons, I already knew you were a most worthy opponent. Then, as we’ve been fighting alongside each other, I know you are a loyal ally to whom I can always entrust my back. I’ve come to love you, not as an ally, not as a friend nor mere lovers. I’ve come to love you as much as a soul could love and bond with another…”
Karna’s eyes were as cool as ever, yet in them shone a brilliant light rivaling the northern star. Siegfried could hear the pounding of his heart in his ribcages and the rushing of blood in his veins. This flesh of his was constructed with magic and yet its imitations of a real, living body were impeccable. It was in moments like these that he felt he was living instead of just existing.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman, my feelings will not change.”
Unable to stand the intensity of Karna’s gaze any longer, Siegfried acted swiftly, not allowing Karna a chance to properly react. Putting a hand behind Karna’s neck, he leaned in and captured his lips in the only way he knew to prevent Karna from talking, because any words from those soft, pale lips could be the last straw from bursting the dam holding his raging emotions. It felt different from kissing a male Karna and it was only natural, but as the same time it was indescribably familiar. They kissed every night, light, tickling kisses to convey each other’s feelings and wish each other a sound, nightmare-free sleep; but to kiss like to pour their souls into it was quite rare. Siegfried’s mind went back in time to the moment Karna confessed to him as he was trapped between the Lancer’s body and the concrete wall, and the searing kiss they shared afterwards.
Under the moonlight, Karna’s eyes had lost its cool edge and became iridescent while his cheeks flushed and his lips, glistening and plump, parted for short pants. The sharp cleavage below his crimson jewel, made all the more visible due to the rapid rising and falling of his chest, caught Siegfried’s gaze as well as causing the blood to rush to his face. He could imagine all the flowery words spewing from Davinci’s lips if she was able to see Karna now, and was thankful she wasn’t. His chest swelt with a sense of privilege to be the only one to feast his eyes upon such a sight.
Karna peppered the corner of his mouth with butterfly kisses, and Siegfried felt his smiles. This was another privilege he enjoyed, to be able to see Karna smile so frequently and even be the cause in some occasions. To the Heroic Spirit who had spent most of his life granting people’s wishes and making them happy, he was most content to put a smile to face of the person he loved.
“I wonder what chaos is reigning back in Chaldea at the moment,” Siegfried said.
“Probably nothing,” Karna replied, resuming his position of resting his head on Siegfried’s shoulder.
“But it seems Foxy Lady has learnt of the news and once she knows something, so does everyone in Chaldea.”
Karna chuckled. “Not Arjuna. Was he your earlier concern?” he asked.
“Well, your brother does have a penchant for being a tad too dramatic.”
When it comes to his brother, Siegfried mentally added.
“That’s true. However, Tamamo is quite cautious when Arjuna is involved. That I can assure.”
For some reason, the term ‘brother’ complex, which he had learned from Kiyohime a few months ago, sprang to Siegfried’s mind even though he didn’t quite grasp its meaning.
Together with Kiyohime, Karna was one of the two Servants who were rather close with the Caster, so it was reasonable that he understood her while she was a paradox to many others, Siegfried included.
“Even if he knows,” Karna said, “it’ll be just another day at Chaldea.”
“Right, just another day at Chaldea,” Siegfried echoed, smiling down at the Lancer.
To be continued