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Winter Scarf

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"Ai what is this?" asked Flame, looking down at the box that Ai had all but shoved into his arms. It was a plain looking box adorned only with a bow, and not particularly heavy, leading Flame to wonder if he's just been handed an empty box. Which, considering Ai, wasn't out of the question.


"It's a gift silly," said Ai.


"For what occasion?" asked Flame. "As I recall, humans only give gifts on special occasions."


Ai was quiet and thoughtful for a few moments, tapping his chin. "Pick an occasion!" he said finally. "The holidays, your birthday, celebrating 6 months in your SOLtis body..."


Flame frowned, the holidays were at least a month off and he had no idea when his birthday even was, or *if* he even had one (Ai insisted they did, everyone had birthdays he'd said). But, it was approaching 6 months since he'd gotten a SOLtis body and he was finally getting used to the change in his center of gravity now that he was closer to 6 feet tall rather than 6 inches.


"Besides, do I need a reason to give my friend a gift?" asked Ai.


Flame sighed, he supposed Ai had a point, thought it still seemed very out of the blue. Then again, it was Ai so he doubted it would be anything bad. And with Ai was watching him eagerly, shifting from foot to foot in anticipation he decided it was best to get it over with. Carefully, he lifted the lid, revealing was seemed to be a bolt of red and gold fabric pooled inside.

Curiously, he reached for it, pulling it out as he discarded the box. No, it wasn't just a length of fabric, but a long red scarf with fire patterns on the ends. It was soft to the touch and no doubt warm.


"So...what do you think?" asked Ai, rocking on his feet as Flame examined it. "I saw it the other day and thought of you. Well, I thought of Soulburner first but we all know who helped come up with his design. And since the snow arrived I thought you might need something."


Flame stared at the scarf, trying to come up with the right thing to say. Being an android he didn't actually get cold (outside of being powered down for long periods of time). So really, he could have wandered outside naked as a newborn and wouldn't have felt a thing, so clothing like this was of no use to him. But, at the same time, Ai had gone out of his way for him and to turn it down like that would be rude. What finally came out was 'How do I wear it?'


Ai's face lit up and he clapped his hands together excitedly. "Here let me show you,” he said, deftly slipping it out of Flame’s hands. 


The next thing Flame knew, Ai was right in his face, the scarf looped around the back of his neck and pulling them almost nose to nose as Ai wrapped it around him. Flame was quite glad that, at least in the real world, his SOLtis lacked the capacity to blush and that Ai was to focused on the scarf to notice the whirring of his internal fans. God Ai was so close to him, he could almost see and count each individual eyelash. His gold eyes were focused on the scarf, so he didn’t seem to notice how Flame was just sort of, staring at him. He’d never really taken the time to admire Ai’s SOLtis form before, the smooth porcelain skin, the thick, wavy black hair. He was, Flame supposed, pleasing to the eye.


“There,” said Ai after a moment, taking a step back. “Perfect.”


Flame blinked and looked down, the scarf was wrapped snugly around him and the ends hung down the front. It was warm and comfortable and he could easily pull the folds up and over his mouth. 


Ai smiled again, that same dopey, cheerful smile and Flame wanted nothing more than to hide his face in the folds of the scarf and pray Ai didn’t notice his reaction as he muttered a soft thank you. 

It was silly, he thought, to react like this to Ai of all people. This was Ai, the laziest and silliest of their brethren. Why on earth was he getting all flustered over him??

But it wasn’t like Ai was all bad. He was kind, always trying to put a smile on everyone’s faces, even if it did require him to slack off on a few things, and if the scarf was any indication he was thoughtful too.


“I know, why don’t we go show off your new accessory!” exclaimed Ai, clapping his hands together gleefully. “I bet Takeru would love it! Why don’t we go find him and show him?”


Flame opened his mouth to respond, he really didn’t want to disturb Takeru with something as inane as showing off a new scarf. But Ai it seemed had other ideas, grabbing his hand before he had a chance to reply and pulling Flame after him. Flame felt his fans start to spin again as heat built up inside him. He wondered, if he had a heart how fast it would be beating, if he would be blushing. 

Wordlessly he followed after Ai, the Dark Ignis’ keeping a firm grip on his hand as they ran.


He touched the flame patterned scarf around his neck lightly, a tiny smile touching his lips. It really was a nice scarf.