This was a Secret Santa fill, and is also my first contribution to the FE:A fandom! This is a gift for signelchan, so I hope you enjoy it!
Chrom was in the bathroom, brushing his hair. His current expression was a frown, indicating that he was in a bad mood. After he finished his hair, he walked out of the bathroom to see his girlfriend sitting on the couch, already finished getting ready and waiting for Chrom.
"Can you tell me again how we got roped into doing this?" Chrom asked her, and she laughed at the expression on his face.
"Oh, come on, Chrom. This is your sister that we're going out to meet up with. I thought you'd be happy that she found herself a boyfriend." Chrom's girlfriend said to him, standing up and putting a hand on his shoulder. "It'll be fun, and you can tell him how to treat Lissa right."
"You're probably right, Robin," Chrom sighed, putting a hand on top of Robin's. "And I am curious to know who caught her eye. It sounds like she's quite smitten with the guy."
"Yes, if the two hour phone call is anything to go by, she must be very excited. I bet that'll be a hefty phone bill she'll have to pay," Robin chuckled, giving Chrom a kiss on the cheek. "Now come on, let's get going. We don't want to keep them waiting."
"Okay, dear. I just hope that Vaike doesn't decide to show up while I'm out and raid the fridge like he sometimes does." Chrom commented, earning a sigh from Robin.
"You really need to get that key back from him. He doesn't live here anymore, so there's no real reason for him to still have it," Robin told Chrom, pulling him toward the door, sensing Chrom's intention of stalling their departure. Feeling Chrom's resistance, Robin turned to it. "Is something the matter? Usually, you're so excited to see Lissa, and it's been a month since we last saw her."
"I just have this horrible feeling," Chrom admitted, and Robin's eyebrow rose, curious. "Vaike moved out when he got a girlfriend so he could move into her place, and around the same time, Lissa's telling us that she found a guy. I guess I'm just expecting Vaike to be there simply because of that coincidence, and I'm not looking forward to it if he is."
"I have to admit, I don't think Vaike would be the best match for Lissa," Robin voiced her thoughts. "However, I think that they'd have a lot of fun together. They're both always so full of energy, maybe they could wear each other out so that when they do decide to settle down, they're both focused on their family?"
"Gods, Robin, you make it sound like they're going to get married," Chrom exclaimed, running a hand down his face. "I don't want to think about this anymore. I'm just going to hope that it's not Vaike that we'll see next to Lissa, and instead another guy that I know will treat her right."
"Maybe it's best to let Lissa make decisions on her own," Robin said, moving toward the front door again, pulling Chrom along, who came more willingly this time. "The last time we tried to set her up with a guy that we approved of, it ended with her coming to our door at 3am crying her heart out."
"I don't think I'll ever look at Stahl the same way ever again…" Chrom mused as they went out the door and to the car. Chrom got into the driver's seat and Robin next to him in the passenger's seat. "Anyway, let's just get this over with." Chrom started the car and the couple were on their way.
Chrom entered the diner, holding the door open for Robin, who thanked him as she walked through. After scanning the booths, Chrom could see that Lissa hadn't arrived yet.
"She sure does like her late entrances… She's so dramatic." Chrom rolled his eyes, yet he had a smile on his face. He was happy at the chance to catch up with Lissa for the first time in a month, but he wasn't going to hide his annoyance of the last-minute decision to meet.
"Let's just sit down, Chrom. She'll spot us easily enough, what with your hair." Robin ruffled Chrom's hair, effectively messing it up and leaving Chrom to fix it while they walked to a booth away from the door. Robin had them sit facing away from the door, to Chrom's protests. "It'll be a true surprise that way. If you get to see the guy walking in, you'll instantly start judging him, and you might just walk away from this."
"You make me sound so judgemental," Chrom complained. "Do you remember what you looked like the first time we met? And I still fell for you."
"Now you're the one being dramatic, Chrom," Robin rolled her eyes playfully. "I didn't even look that bad. It was just really windy, and I'd had the misfortune of falling into some mud… Yeah, you're right. I did look awful."
"Told you so." Chrom smirked, and Robin hit him in the arm playfully. They heard the door open, and when Chrom went to turn around, Robin stopped him.
"Remember what I said? Let them come to us." Robin reminded Chrom, and he sighed, fighting back the curiosity to ignore his girlfriend and turn around. A few seconds later, Lissa was sliding into the booth, sitting across from Robin.
"Hi!" Lissa exclaimed, reaching across the table to hug Robin, and then Chrom, both times being very awkward and Lissa almost falling onto the table trying to reach her brother. "It's so good to see you!"
"Nice to see you too, Lissa." Robin smiled at the girl.
"Yeah, it's really great. Now, where is he?" Chrom asked, gesturing to the empty space where Lissa should have a boyfriend sitting.
"That's all the greeting I get, Chrom? You're such a jerk sometimes," Lissa pouted, but when Chrom didn't offer anything else, Lissa sighed. "He's freshening up in the bathroom. He's nervous about meeting you two and getting your approval."
"Well, if he's nervous, then that's a good sign that it might work out this time." Chrom smiled at his sister, whose face brightened up.
"I'm glad to hear that, Chrom. I think you'll like this one." Lissa told him, and when she suddenly started waving and calling out, Chrom knew that the guy was coming over. For some strange reason, Chrom started to feel nervous himself. And then the guy was scooting into the seat next to Lissa, making himself comfortable by putting an arm around Lissa and grinning at the couple across from him. Chrom felt his heart sink, and taking a quick glance at Robin, he saw that she seemed just as surprised.
"I bet ya didn't expect to see me here, did ya? This little miss caught my attention, and who would the Vaike be if he said no to a pretty girl?" Vaike gave Lissa a squeeze, causing the girl to squeal and giggle.
"Vaike, you're making me blush!" Lissa exclaimed, and true to her words, her cheeks were turning a deep red. Chrom and Robin could only stare at the spectacle going on in front of them. Chrom almost left the diner right then and there. Just as he'd made his mind up to get out of his seat and walk out of there, Robin put a hand on his knee, and he looked at her. She was staring at the couple, a smile on her face.
"It's so great that you two are so happy together!" Robin told them, and just by her tone, Chrom could tell that Robin was putting it on so that they wouldn't be hurt. Chrom forced himself to look at Vaike, who gave him a little wave. Chrom felt like punching him in the face.
"You never told me that you were close with Lissa, Vaike. When did this all happen?" Chrom asked as politely as he could, which resulting in his voice being very strained because of his current mood. Robin squeezed his knee.
"Oh, ya know, sometimes when you were out, Lissa came over to visit ya, and Vaike was the only one home, so we got to chattin' and hit it off right away." Vaike explained, and Chrom felt his eye twitch.
"You… were alone with Lissa? In my house?" Chrom asked, his voice getting louder after every pause. Robin and Lissa winced, but Vaike only seemed a little put off.
"Well, Vaike didn't wanna just drive her away, so I was nice to her. Thought ya'd want someone lookin' out for her while you were out," Vaike replied and, seeming to sense Chrom's anger, paused. "Are ya mad at me? The Vaike didn't mean any trouble by it."
"You didn't, did you?" Chrom exclaimed, standing up.
"Chrom…" Robin warned, tugging on Chrom's sleeve, but Chrom wasn't going to listen to reason.
"You're telling me that you didn't want any trouble? Well, now you've got it!" Chrom yelled, causing a few heads to turn their way and Vaike's smile to finally drop off his face, to Chrom's great satisfaction.
"Is somethin' the matter?" Vaike asked, his usual upbeat tone replaced by something more serious.
"Yes, something is the matter! You being here is the problem!" Chrom slammed the table with his hands, causing the three other occupants to jump in surprise. Lissa looked like she was on the brink of tears.
"Chrom…" Lissa said, and Chrom turned to face her briefly, and his heart almost softened enough to stop when he saw how distraught she was, but then he turned back to Vaike before it worked.
"I can't believe that you and my sister can just walk in here and be all lovey-dovey, and then tell me that you two got friendly in my house!" Chrom yelled at Vaike, who looked like a small boy being told off. "You want to know what I think of you two being together? I think that you're going to be an incapable boyfriend, and you're going to break my sister's heart!" Chrom, chest heaving and face red, looked like he was going to add more, but Robin grabbed his arm, and he snatched it away with such force that he almost hit himself in the face. Looking at the three distraught faces around him, Chrom's anger turned into shame, and when he felt tears prickling in the corner of his eyes, he ran out of the diner, ignoring the three voices calling his name.
Chrom ran to the car and got in, locking the doors. He hit his head on the steering wheel, accidentally triggering the horn and startling himself. That's when the tears started, and Chrom put his head in his hands and attempted to stop them.
"Why can't I protect the people I love?" Chrom sobbed, embarrassed that he made such a scene. "I'm such a failure… I can't even keep my promise to her." Chrom was startled when there was a knock on the window, and Chrom looked up to see Lissa standing there, looking concerned and, as he watched on, horrified at seeing her brother in tears. She tried to open the door, but it wouldn't budge.
"Let me in, Chrom!" Lissa yelled, banging on the glass again, and not wanting her to hurt herself, Chrom unlocked the doors. Lissa yanked the car door open and, to Chrom's surprise, grabbed him in a very tight hug. Chrom returned the hug after a second to process it, and when Lissa let go, she was in tears herself. "Why are you so upset by Vaike being my boyfriend, Chrom? Please tell me so I can understand why you're like this." Chrom took a deep, shuddering breath. "I know it's more than just because it's Vaike."
"You know me too well, sis," Chrom told her, and she giggled a little, though it turned into a sob. "I'm just concerned for you. I've known Vaike for a lot longer than you have, so I know what he's like. I don't want you to get hurt when you find out the other sides to him, just like with Stahl."
"But Vaike's been nothing but kind to me, Chrom. He treats me like I'm a princess, and he's my prince charming. He's never been mad at me, and I just don't get why you're so upset by him being here." Lissa replied, desperation seeping into her voice. Chrom sighed and held his sister's hands in his own.
"Listen to me," Chrom started. "Seeing how hurt you were after Stahl broke up with you really scared me, Lissa. You acted in a similar way with him like you did with Vaike just now, and it made me think that even though Vaike's a good guy, he's not incapable of hurting you, either. I trusted Stahl to treat you well, and he went and got with another girl under your nose."
"I think I understand where you're coming from now," Lissa said, reaching up to wipe a tear from Chrom's cheek. "You think I'm too trusting of other people. I think that fear of letting me go comes from the same place that I get my trusting nature from."
"You do?" Chrom asked, sniffling.
"Yeah," Lissa smiled at her brother. "Emm. You took her death so hard, Chrom, and you treated me like I would break if someone else touched me, so that's why you wanted to set me up with someone you thought would love me and treat me well. While you got this fear of not wanting to see me get hurt, I wanted to keep Emm with me always, so I wanted to learn to be more open and trusting, just like she was. You feel like it was your fault that she died, and I get that you just want to protect me, but I can handle myself, too."
Chrom took it all in while staring at Lissa's smiling face. Chrom got out of the car and embraced his sister, holding her close to him, and when he felt her arms snaking around his waist, he smiled. After a minute of just holding each other, the hug broke off.
"Sometimes I forget that you can handle yourself. I hope you can forgive me for what I've done." Chrom said, and Lissa shook her head as if disappointed.
"Don't be silly, Chrom! I'll always forgive you," Lissa told him. "I think that Vaike is the one that needs to forgive you here. You really gave him an earful."
"You're right. Let's go back inside." Chrom said, and when Lissa nodded, the two siblings walked back into the diner, where they saw Robin comforting an upset Vaike. Chrom and Lissa reached them, and Robin moved so that everyone could be seated the way they were, except Vaike was sitting across from Robin instead, avoiding eye contact with Chrom. Chrom cleared his throat and swallowed his pride.
"Hey, Vaike, I'm really sorry for yelling at you in front of everyone. It was an awful thing for me to do," Chrom apologised, and Vaike managed to look at him to see if he was being sincere. "I'm just worried about Lissa, but I can see that you two are really happy, and that I was being immature about it all."
"It's my fault, too. Vaike shouldn't have been seein' Lissa behind ya back, 'specially in ya own home." Vaike replied. "Truce?"
"Truce." Chrom replied, smiling and reaching his hand out, which Vaike took and the two shook hands. Robin squeezed Chrom's knee and smiled at him, and Lissa rubbed Vaike's shoulder. "Now, how about we set things right and have a nice meal together?"
"Sounds good ta me! The Vaike's real hungry after all the drama." Vaike admitted, beaming, and Lissa laughed, Chrom and Robin joining in. After the laughing had died down, Robin leaned over to Chrom.
"I'm proud of you for apologising like that." Robin whispered.
"Thank you." Chrom whispered back, giving Robin a kiss on the cheek. He turned to Lissa and Vaike, who seemed to be having their own conversation, smiling at each other. Chrom smiled at them, and knew that Lissa was in good hands, despite his earlier doubts.
Merry Christmas, signelchan! I hope it lived up to expectations!