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Dissidia: Second String, Round 1

Title: Dissidia: Second String

Rating: PG, mostly for violence.

Summary: What if the heroes of Dissidia and Duodecim were replaced with their supporting cast instead?

Author’s Note:  I’m blaming this one entirely on tenshinoakuma.  How this hijacked my dwindling fanfic time, I don’t know.  This isn't what I was supposed to be writing at all.

The rules I set for myself were thus:  Dissidia, how it might have gone if it only used parts of the cast not present in Duodecim.  I broke this rule only for ExDeath, because, um, yeah, FF5 doesn’t actually really have a cast of villains?  It’s ExDeath and Gilgamesh and that’s it.  I could have wiki’d some of the sub-bosses, but that would no longer be fulfilling the whole ‘connections between those summoned’ requirement of canon.  Also, FF5’s sub-bosses were lame.  The fact I had to wiki them despite playing the game not all that long ago is testament to that.

Also, I left out FF11 altogether.  Not like Shanttoto or Prishe were in the main storyline anyway.

Anyhow, I digress!  This was written sort of as a series of what were originally intended to be stand-alone snippets, so I'd be more inclined to label these as a series of related drabbles more than a multi-chapter fic.  The story beats are largely the same as Dissidia itself, naturally, so that should hopefully cut down on disorientation.  I’m marking each section with its respective FF, so you can only check out the FFs you’re interested in if you want.

I don’t have a specific update schedule for this, because my schedule is still in a bit of flux at the moment and I’ve got a fair bit on my plate.  Probably an update once a week, likely Saturdays.



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Dissidia: Second String

Part 1


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4, 10, 13

Auron thought it odd, sometimes, that he could be pulled through the dimensions to another world, and still wind up looking after a summoner and a young blond idiot with more energy than sense.

“I don’t really know what the deal is with it,” Snow was explaining, showing off the unusual tattoo on his forearm.  “But I get the feeling it’s important.  And that it’s been frozen or something.  But whenever I use any sort of magic, it feels kind of weird, like the magic is coming from it.  Gives me the creeps, actually.”

“I didn’t know you could use magic,” Rydia commented, studying the mark with renewed interest.

Snow reminded him a lot of another young headstrong charge who liked to talk a lot. Rydia, on the other hand, might have sported the long sleeves that identified so many summoners, but her personality could not have been more different.  She was quiet, but in a sullen, angry sort of way.

“Sure I can!”  Snow held out one gloved hand.  A sputtering of frost lashed a small shrub a short distance away.  The brand on his arm glowed faintly for the briefest of moments.

Rydia eyed his efforts with visible disappointment.  Snow rubbed the back of his thick neck sheepishly.  “I’m not great at it, I admit.  I prefer to stick to using my fists.”

Rydia muttered something about hot air, and Auron stepped in.  “We have to keep moving,” he reminded them.  “Cosmos is waiting.”

“Right,” Snow said, thumping his fists together.  “To Sanctuary!” 

They were allies of circumstance, but allies were important in this world.  Even Auron did not travel alone without good reason.

“Stay close,” he counselled, hefting his sword to sit more comfortably on his shoulder.  “There are manikins about.”






3, 5, 8

Arc had been picking bits of quartz – the remains of a shattered manikin – out of the cuffs of his green coat when he came across the two warriors.  Or rather, the two warriors came across him.

“Hey!” The girl dressed in a long light-blue cardigan waved him down.  Surprised – Arc hadn’t come across many of the other warriors of Cosmos yet – he waited as they caught up.

The girl looked kind – her hair was long, a dark-chocolate colour, and she smiled readily at him.  Older than him, of course, but so was everybody else.  He wasn’t quite sure what to make of the other one – a somewhat aristocratic-looking young man with long platinum-blond hair, a serious expression and dressed in a full-length black sleeveless coat and what looked like a pirate captain’s regalia.  In short, he looked quite scary.

Once they were closer, the girl stuck out her hand.  “I’m Rinoa,” she introduced.  “This is Faris.”  Faris inclined his head in greeting.  Arc nodded back, trying not to flinch under that stern, assessing gaze.  “You’re with Cosmos too, right?”

“Yes.  I’m Arc,” he mumbled, a sudden attack of shyness coming on.  He’d mostly travelled alone thus far, making his slow and steady way to Sanctuary.

“What do you do, Arc?” Faris suddenly asked.  Arc nearly jumped at the harsh tone of voice, though it wasn’t quite as deep or intimidating as he’d feared it would be.

He fidgeted.  “Um, magic I guess.  I have a lot of specialities, but magic is my strongest one.”

Faris nodded, as though coming to a decision.  “Good.  I’ve no particular talent for magic.  We could use your skills.  You can travel with us to Sanctuary.”

“Hey!” Rinoa protested, sounding offended, though her expression implied otherwise.  “What about me?”

“Your magic is wild and uncontrollable and is as likely to damage us as it is the enemy,” Faris stated bluntly.  “I’d prefer to have someone a little more predictable around.”

“You want someone easier to boss around, you mean,” Rinoa remarked.

“Um…” Arc hedged.

Faris scoffed.  “Do you want to leave him behind for the manikins to devour alive, while we muddle through on our own?  It’s as much for his sake as it is for ours.  Obviously it’s smarter for Cosmos’s allies to stick together.”

“Um, you know, I can probably manage…” Arc mumbled.

Rinoa tilted her head, a smile creeping up on the edges of her mouth.  “Oh, I see what this is about.  He is a little cutie, isn’t he?  You do have a motherly side.  I knew it.”

Wait… Faris was a girl?

Faris’s cheeks were rapidly reddening.  She huffed and turned away.  “I’m being practical.”

“Sure, sure,” Rinoa agreed amiably.  She grinned at Arc, as though sharing a secret joke with him.  “Practical.” 

Arc just ducked his head, hiding his eyes beneath his auburn-brown hair, too busy being embarrassed about getting her gender wrong to pay much attention to what the rest of it meant. 

“Are you coming or not, kid?” Faris barked.

Arc jumped, then meekly went along.  Faris and Rinoa were scary.  He’d rather they stayed angry at each other than him.






1, 9, 12

Balthier preferred to think of himself as the leading man.  It made things more interesting that way.

He found it difficult, though, to embrace the philosophy as they approached a goddess waiting in the tranquil clearing of a shallow lake and white sands, in the company of a fearsome mage with amnesia worse than even his, and a princess who summoned eidolons – what he would call espers – with the same ease he fired his rifle.

And arriving to fill out the rest of the clearing were characters no less capable.  The boy – little more than a child - gave him pause, and he also decided to keep an eye on the rather scruffily-dressed young man who bore all the hallmarks of a thieving scamp. 

His gaze, unfortunately, couldn’t help but keep drifting towards the green-haired young damsel with the enormous sleeves. 

Balthier was human, after all.  The rest of the women had the good grace to at least cover their thighs.  Why wear ridiculously long sleeves but no pants?

“You are staring,” Garnet informed him imperiously.  Her words were clipped and refined – as politely caustic as even the wealthiest Archadians.  With her long dark brown hair and dark eyes, all she needed was some overly complicated dresses and she would have fit right in with them.

It made the verbal fencing far too easy, and easier yet to placate her sensibilities.  “My apologies.  The different styles of dress across the worlds are quite fascinating.  I would never be deliberately improper to a lady.”

Unlike the Archadians, Garnet – self-named Dagger – had at her core kindness and a general lack of worldliness that let her accept his excuses in good graces.  She eyed the green-haired woman dubiously.  “Yes, I suppose I could see the difficulty in that.  Your clothes, too, caught me off-guard.  Even my mother does not have any embroidery so exquisite.”

Balthier adjusted the cuffs of his long white sleeves.  “It’s quite common in my world.”  At least, the parts of it he could remember.  “And you, Black Mage?”

Their largely silent travelling companion turned his gaze towards them – even now, the glowing eyes staring out from the shadowed face made him flinch, expecting him to have turned mad from the Mist.  He wore a pointed, wide-brimmed yellow hat, the heavy fabric causing the tip to sag, along with a long, thick blue robe, sewn of a material that looked primitive to the sky pirate’s eyes.  “I cannot recall, Balthier.  I’ve yet to reclaim any memories at all.”

A rather depressing state of affairs, that.  And yet, all of those present suffered at least some degree of the malady.  Curious.

Then the Goddess of Harmony rose from her seat, her glowing, pale form wreathed in white and gold, cutting off all further discussion.  The surviving warriors had finally gathered, and Cosmos was ready to address them.






2, 6, 7


Maria twirled the blossom in her fingers absently, deep in thought.  The white sands and gentle waters of Sanctuary were at their backs now, and they faced only the drab grasses and endlessly grey skies of Cornelia Plains.  The other warriors, no doubt, had gone their own ways – there was nothing but gateways and manikins out here.  And somewhere among them, they were to find their crystals, a last ditch attempt at winning what looked like an unwinnable war.

She tucked a stray strand of dark purple hair out of her eyes.  ‘Find the crystals’, Cosmos had said… yet she had not the slightest clue where to look.

A flash of pink fabric caught the corner of her eyes.  “What’s that you have there?”

Maria flinched in surprise, relaxing and smiling when she realised who it was.  It was only Aeris.  “Oh, this thing?”  She felt embarrassed at being caught day-dreaming, but eventually offered up the crimson flower.  “Just something I found on the road to Sanctuary.”

Aeris made a small sound of delight, carefully taking the bloom from the archer’s fingers.  “It’s beautiful,” she breathed.  “A wild rose!”

Maria fidgeted until Aeris handed the flower back.  “Thanks.”

“It’s important to you?” she asked, settling down on the grass next to her – Locke was haggling with one of the moogles nearby, trying to get the best deal out of the meagre materials they’d found on their journey so far. 

“I can’t explain it, but it feels like a clue,” she said, uncomfortable at the display of sentimentality.  She didn’t consider herself the sentimental sort, except that she actually sort of was, and it was simply something circumstances had forced her to abandon.

Aeris nodded, her green eyes bright.  “Even clues are precious in this world.”

“What about you?” she asked.  “Have you remembered anything new?”

“A little,” she said, smoothing out her pink dress, and didn’t offer anything more.

“Nothing important, then?” Maria guessed.  That had happened with her.  Snatches of childhood, odd, inconsequential moments with family, things like making breakfast or mending the fence or going to the shops.

“Everything is important,” was Aeris’s cryptic reply.  “We simply take it for granted until it’s gone.”





Next round

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
swyrel
Mar. 17th, 2012 03:48 pm (UTC)
Loved them, even if I only knew who one person out of each is~ But you're writing is so good that it doesn't matter if I don't know who everyone is~ But yay Snow and Balthier! Two of my favorite men~ XD <3
sinnatious
Mar. 18th, 2012 05:30 am (UTC)
Thanks! Hmm, so who are the four then? Snow, Balthier, definitely Aeris... Rinoa?
swyrel
Mar. 19th, 2012 03:40 am (UTC)
Yep, got them all right! Oh, wait, I know who Auron is. Forgot about him. T_T I've only played like 5 FF games so I guess I need to try the other ones too. lol
piekage
May. 11th, 2012 10:20 pm (UTC)
Yay!
I come hear to reread The Fifth Act and see Dissidia fanfiction, AND a happyend for Dear Kunsel? Good times.
sinnatious
May. 12th, 2012 05:02 am (UTC)
Re: Yay!
Heh. Hope you enjoy them~
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )