Fortunately, the heat wave hadn't last that long, otherwise it would've been unbearably hot, Aqua thought, quite relieved, while she stared at Ven and Master Eraqus from the huge window of the library, who were in the middle of a training session. Even at such a great distance she could clearly see the very concentrated look at Ven's face. That frown on his young face seemed to be so out of place, completely out of character. It just wasn't like the real Ven, at all. She didn't know this serious Ven that well. She did know the Ven who always laughed and was cheerful and in a good mood, though, and she was really happy about that. He was one of the good things in this castle.

Behind her, she heard footsteps, but she didn't bother to look and see who it was. That wasn't necessary. In the window she could already see who it was; Terra's reflection became bigger and bigger, as said brunet approached her quietly.

He walked slowly towards her and stood still next to her, watching the scene outside, too.

Eventually, he was the first one who broke the comfortable silence that had set between the two childhood friends. Clearing his throat, he called out, "Aqua?"


She turned toward him and looked at him inquiringly, cocking her head slightly.

He took a deep breath to steady himself before he continued, "I've been thinking, and uh...well..."

"Don't hurt yourself," she quickly joked, which earned him a roll of his cobalt blue eyes.

He didn't say anything anymore, though. Apparently, he didn't know how he should continue, since he stopped talking abruptly. He had made her curious, however.

"Yes, go on, I'm listening," she said, encouraging him.

Fortunately, it worked.

"Well, I think it's better if we call a truce and start acting normal to each other again. I mean, that might just be the best for all of us, don't you think?"

She raised her eyebrows incredulously. Terra, who wanted to give up the pranks he had in his mind? It wasn't that strange that she didn't believe him. She wondered how and even if he could explain that, because this was even more out of character than Ven's serious look. Could this be one of his new tricks? She didn't know, but with Terra, one had to be extra cautious.

"May I ask why you come up with that now?" she asked him, a neutral look appearing on her face.

He was up to something, that was sure. The question was, what could it be this time?

"Because I just realized that we've almost reached the point to where we can lose our friendship for something insignificant and I uh... don't want that," he replied gravely.

How funny. Hadn't Ven said something like that to her, too, not too long ago? Or had Terra come to this conclusion just because he was afraid for her next step and didn't want any further revenge? Maybe she had to give Terra a chance, though, although it could be another trick of him. Nobody should trust that boy, he had proved that in the last few weeks. She had to take that chance, if she really wanted some peace, though. Especially because she was running out of ideas to get back to him. Oh, and of course because she believed in Karma. Didn't they say that 'What goes around, comes around?' If that really was true - and she didn't doubt that for a second - then maybe it was better to give him the benefit of the doubt.

"Okay then. I'm sure I'll regret it some day, if not today, but I agree with you. I will behave, but only if you do, too," she promised solemnly. "Promise?"

He nodded and extended his right hand toward her. "You have my word. So, do we have a deal now?" he asked with a small smile.

That smile, which lit up his whole face, was all it took from her to make her say yes. It made her wonder if he was aware of that fact.

"Deal," she replied, smiling back at him.

She took his hand to shake it, just like she was supposed to, but she immediately received a huge shock that coursed through body. It was so intense and surprising that she just couldn't think normally anymore and even wobbled on her feet for some time, until the sudden and unexplained pain slowly faded. The brunet boy - Aqua refused to call him a man, even though physically this was contradicted - laughed and showed her the ring on his finger, the source of the shock.

Aqua immediately scowled. Of course. She should've known. That she had bought that, one of the oldest pranks of the book that existed. She almost wanted to slap herself on her head to her stupid action.

"Quite uh... shocking, huh? I can't believe that you didn't see that coming," he admitted, grinning. "Oh well. Guess you can't be smart all the time. Not that I'm complaining, haha."

He turned around and wanted to walk away again, still snickering at the prank that he'd pulled, but Aqua had other thoughts. She quickly grabbed him by his upper arm before he could escape without being punished. It was then that she noticed that his upper arm felt as muscular as it looked like.

Wait... what? No, can't be thinking like that. Focus, Aqua!

"Hey Terra, do you really want to see something shocking?" she whispered in his ear.

Little did she know that thanks to her sudden change of move, the male teen's heart rate went up immediately and the small hairs at the back of his neck were standing straight up. His legs started to shake too. They felt pretty much like spaghetti strings right now.

"Then watch this," she said softly.

She let go of him, but he could still feel the imprint of her hand on his arm, although there was nothing striking to see. She raised her arms and loudly proclaimed, "Vivatis Libra, vivatis!"

That had to be something in Latin. The brunet wondered what that meant. Something with books and life. Suddenly, dozens of books were flying off the shelves, directly to a shocked Terra's direction. That pretty much answered his questions...unfortunately.

Then, he realized what was going to happen. "Uh-oh," he muttered, before he started to run.

But it was too late. The books didn't spare him and beat him on his head. He held his arms protectively around his head as he was driven out of the library by them. That would earn his some more bruises by the end of the day. Then, all the books flew back to their own shelf, because their mission had been a great success.

"Never underestimate the power of a good book," Aqua spoke, smiling a little.

She turned around again and stared out of the big window at the scene that was happening below, just like she had done a few minutes ago. It almost looked like nothing had happened in the meantime, but the opposite was true. For Aqua, there hadn't really happened anything, anyway. Still thinking of the shoes, she vowed to ensure that she would make each of Terra's prank backfire, until she thought that they were even. No, she wouldn't stop earlier. That was a promise to herself that she would keep.

Flying books were only the beginning. Terra had no idea what she truly was capable of, but he would find out soon enough.

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