To See Another Day Chapter 25
Kiss Me Gently
By Kain Servant
It was odd in a good, warm and fuzzy way, that there was a woman standing naked in front of him. It was sort of like the dreams he had from time to time.she was there with long hair flowing down her shoulders, her tongue out on the edge of her lip, one hand on her hip and the other beckoning at him seductively...one leg bent outwards. She was a woman and a half, and she was staring straight at him.
"Blank." She called, "Is there anything you want, more than this?"
"Umm..." Blank took a step forward, but she backed away quickly, "Well...probably, but I can't think of anything at the moment."
"Hmm..." She smiled, "Well let me throw you an invitation. You've been striving to find love all your life, haven't you? Unsure about its true definition, you've stayed away. Cautious. A lover with no love. Am I right?"
Blank struggled with her gaze for a moment and looked around. Where had his friends gone? And the battlefield? Everything was just kind of...hazy.
"Answer me, Blank..." She strode over to him, taking his chin in her fingers, and directing his eyes into hers. "Am I right?"
"Yes. I want true love...no substitute."
Slowly she took his hand, "And did you find your...true love?"
Blank paused, "I...I love Eiko."
She took his hand and gently slid it on to her slender hip, "Yes... so why did you back away?"
Blank's eyes turned down to follow her hand, but her other hand reached up and pushed them back into the depths of her orbs, "I...back away?"
Her hand pushed his downward, "Mmm...yes love is supposed to be passionate and fierce. You were afraid of hurting her. But you loved her and she loved you. So why not?"
Blank tried to pull away from her, but she pulled him in, "It would have hurt her. It wasn't the right time."
"It would have hurt her?" She pushed up against him and slid her arms around his waist, "What else, then? What is your definition of love?"
The haze around him thickened, and he tried not to enjoy her touch against his skin.but the temptation was too great. He sighed and she began to pull his shirt off. He had to fight her...for Eiko. "Love...love is an emotion stronger than any other, something that you feel for someone that is stronger than life or death, because it will cause you to live or die for them. It isn't physical...it's...in the mind, so strong no word or action can fully describe it."
"Very well..." She tugged visciously at the shirt until it came over his head, tearing at the arm, "And so your love is unbreakable? Even though you're here and she's in Lindblum?"
"How do you know...all this?" Blank queried, stalling for time. Why was he so afraid of this? He wanted to love Eiko...but she would never know of this, and he had been waiting so long... "Who are you?"
"My name is Alz. Call me...your goddess of love." She pulled his hand to her breast, "I'm real...and I know all of you, Blank. I know your pain, and how you've kept yourself waiting...and I will free you, Blank."
Blank stared lazily into her eyes, a wave of sleep pushing at him, "Free me?"
"If your love to Eiko is so true..." Alz's face grew closer, "Than you can kiss me, and it will not alter your love." Her hand swept across his cheek, "Just one kiss."
A kiss. "I..." He had kissed Eiko before. A demonstration of their love, but it did not contain their love. So kissing her wouldn't put anything between true love. But something was wrong.
Her lips grew closer. And the scent of her breath was like sweet perfume... the sleep, for some reason she was trying to put him to sleep. Probably to kill him. Why else would any woman come at him so violently? So she was going to put him to sleep and kill him, and then he was over...
Of course usually that would create a response of desperate action against death. But Blank was far too sleepy to take any sort of desperate action. Besides, he had a beautiful woman pushing him down, her naked breasts lying against his chest...why not kiss her, even if it killed him. What better way to die than kissing a beautiful woman?
'All this because I fell in love with Eiko. Well she'd better be alive and in love with me when I see her again.' Blank closed his eyes and fought against the breaking waves of slumber, feeling the woman's lips push against his, an appealing noise like purring sounded in the back of her throat. A tiger waiting to strike.
Blank shrugged and opened his eyes. "For love." He kissed her deeply.
Freya tossed another clod of dirt into the air with her spear, watching it tumble through the air to fall in a pile of dozens more like it. It had been...too long. The dragon and the whore had come, danced around, said a few things, and then they disappeared, Blank and Steiner with them.
That wasn't a typical thing. Steiner wouldn't just leave the group without warning, and Blank probably wouldn't either. Which meant they were taken forcefully...but where - they had disappeared into the damn air! She growled and tossed another clod.
"What are you doing?" Fratley groaned at her, rolling over to look at her curiously, his hands behind his head as he lay on the ground.
"Digging a few graves. Atleast its something to do while our friends roam the skies."
"Oh come on. They're two tough guys, I'm sure they can handle a few monsters by themselves. They'll be back in no time. Come over here and sit by me. And put your spear down."
Freya looked around at the rest of the crew. They were busy examining the entrance to the Ice Cavern, and Amarant stood a few yards away, inspecting one of the mage corpses for clues of its orgin. With a sigh, she rolled over next to Fratley, resting her head down on his chest. He wrapped his arm around her shoulder lovingly. She sighed,
"I guess I just get worked up...I don't want to lose anyone...but lives are too fragile."
"Sometimes you can't save everything...you just have to save yourself and hope." Fratley touched her face comfortingly, but she pulled away for a second to look into his eyes, her face filled with thought.
"You've said that before...many years ago, when my mother died..." He simply looked at her blankly. She pressed on, a plea wavering active in her voice, "Do you remember?" His brow furrowed slightly, and she saw pain flash across his eyes. He didn't remember.he couldn't. They both tried to avoid it, but it hurt them both. Especially him. Quickly she pushed back into his arms, a tear in her eye. "You know...Fratley... I wish you'd remember the days before Kuja. They were the good times...when life didn't spin by so fast and we had a chance to really sit back and be in love."
Fratley was silent. Even his breathing was quieter. Freya knew it was a tough subject to bring up with him, but it was on her mind, and she didn't want to let it sit and build. His grip on her shoulder tightened, and finally he spoke, "Well...we've had our share of good times...but I know. Hell, I know...I'm missing half of my life somewhere...when I was someone I don't know. Sometimes I feel like I'm on the verge of remembering, like the outer skin is finally going to break...but it never does." He was shaking slightly, and she reached up to take his arm.
"No...stop. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to bring it up."
Fratley shook his head, "No, it's alright. Freya, I never want there to be tension between us. I know for you its like you've loved two different men - but you're all I have...someday, if we wait long enough, I'll finally know."
"I love only you." She pecked him on the cheek. Then smiled and looked around, "Where's Blank? He just missed our big romantic moment."
He kissed her back and shrugged, "He wasn't needed..." They kissed again, more intimately, and Freya closed her eyes - pulling in the warmth of Fratley's embrace. Maybe she really didn't care if he ever regained his memory - he loved her this way, and they were alive. What more could she ask for?
"Wake up. Or extract...or whatever you need to do..." Amarant's monotone grunt roused the two lovers, sending them scurrying to their feet. The big man towered above them, one clawed hand posed cautiously at his side, the other gripping a black mage hat. He smirked as the two blushed like children, "Don't get too excited, not like I care. Look...see this hat? It looks to be identical, except for the color, to the ones the black mages wore. Which might mean the same maker..."
"So Kuja is making mages again?" Freya questioned. It did not really surprise her that Amarant nodded his head. She sighed, "Well...that'll only slow us down a little bit. But what I'm worried about is Blank...and Steiner. What were those things, who sent them?"
Amarant shrugged, "They'll be fine. Blank'll probably have his fun with the chick, then he'll be back. Steiner...well..." Amarant only fought for optimistic words for a moment, then he was saved by a bright flash, and Blank appearing at his feet. Blank was on his knees, his shirt gone, and his arms wrapped around another figure as he...kissed her. Amarant raised his eyebrows and pointed. "Look. See? There's Blank."
Freya's worry quickly turned into a motherly sort of mortification. Hands on hips, she glared down at the unmoving figures, "Blank! What do you think you're doing?"
Slowly Blank reacted, lowering the green-haired figure to the ground. Only when he released her from his grip did Freya realize that the girl was dead. Which was quite a bit more surprising than the fact that Blank was kissing her... As soon as the nude green-haired girl hit the ground, Blank turned to look up at her with a tired smile, wiping moisture from his lips, "I was killing her...why else would I have my hand over her nose?"
"You killed her by kissing her?" Fratley spoke incredulously. Blank nodded,
"Well actually, it was her that wanted to kiss me...it's not very chivalrous to kill a woman with my sword, is it?"
Freya's mind was filled with questions, and many of them she spoke aloud, trying to shove them all out into the air at once, "Why did she take you? Who was she - where did you go? Did you see Steiner?"
"No...I didn't see Steiner. She used some sort of teleportation...magic or something, it wasn't any spell I'd ever seen before though, no words, no hand gestures.we were here one minute, and the next we were in a foggy, dark chamber...she was trying to lure me into sleep and kill me...I'm almost sure of it. But I got the last laugh it seems." Through his smile he still looked wistful, taking a few glances back at the naked woman lying prostrate on the ground, "A shame...she's so damn pretty..."
Amarant seemed nonplussed, "Do you think she was with those gray mages we fought earlier?"
Blank rummaged around in his pocket for a moment, then searched his belt until he found a small green potion, which he downed quickly before shaking his head, "Not likely. If they were on the same team they probably would have all come at the same time. She was different from a normal henchman...she knew my weaknesses, like she had studied my life before coming to fight." Blank's searched the ground, confused, like he was searching for something he couldn't find. Freya's heart went out to him...it looked like he was scared. "She knew about Eiko." He continued hoarsely, "About our love...and she knew I wouldn't use a weapon against a woman...she knew me to the core. It was frightening..."
"I can only imagine..." Fratley murmured, pulling his lance from the ground and shouldering it, "I hope Steiner fared as well as you did...we need to move along as quick as we can - before some more ill befalls us."
"Well if Steiner was taken away like Blank...then there's no way we can find him. We'll just have to wait for him to pop back out...kill the dragon or whatever." Amarant sighed and dropped the mage hat, "Maybe while he's out he can grab an airship to bring back. That would make things a lot easier than walking to Alexandria."
Blank looked at him, "Hmm? What happened to Steiner?"
"Who knows." Freya cast a worried look up at the darkening sky, "And don't make such light of it, Amarant. He could be in real trouble."
"Hey, it's not my fault if he gets his ass hurt. I just want to get out of this situation safely, and live a nice long life. By myself, for once."
"That's not very ni-" Freya started to say, when suddenly another flash came, and Steiner appeared a few feet away, his back to her. She yelped, "Steiner!"
With a slow thud he fell to the ground, a deep sob rumbling from his chest. The four companions looked on in dismay as the big knight continued to beat the ground with huge, mailed fists, and bawl like a baby.
Tenason watched from high above, his presence shrouded by the darkness. It was a waste to use all his strength on the first try. It was the way of them to first give the prey a chance to destroy themselves. And very often it worked...the knight Steiner was now a worthless, sniveling human, no stronger than a child...he would most likely kill himself within a day. If he did not, then Tenason would finish the job. That was the way.
Blank had obviously been stronger than Steiner. Either that or Alz was weaker than she had once been. He saw her corpse decorating the ground along with the bodies of the pathetic mages...fitting he supposed. She was much stronger than the little mages, but they were all dead, so what did he matter now? He had no love for her, but this only meant that someone else would have to finish the job for her. Perhaps he would take up the task after his own target was taken care of...it might supply him with more of a pull in Necron's court.
Alz's snide remarks about how he was being used still galled Tenason. Necron was a strong man, he didn't care what she said.he had almost destroyed the world, all ten dragons combined could not hope to do the same...it had taken only one man to take out one of the dragons - an army could easily dispose of all of them. His acquisition of power would continue to rely on the old man.until he saw a better opening. 'One of the easiest things to do,' Tenason thought, 'when you are a villian, is to change sides.'
N stood out in the garden for a few moments, gripping the iron rail tightly, his breath coming in gasps. Everything around him was foggy, he could never get a good grasp on it. He never could before...could he? Yes he could...dammit, he knew what was going on, it was all a dream - there was no N, he was the editor of nothing...
But even so, even though this endless dream bit him harshly, nothing could ever prepare him for waking up again. He did not want to - he wanted to sleep and sleep forever, or die and be gone forever. Darkness was better than the hell that awaited him if he opened his eyes.
"N?" The secretary touched him gently on the shoulder, and he pulled away quickly, letting all his thoughts out at her in one harsh string,
"There will be no more writing, since there never was. So stop bothering me. Stop it! This isn't real...I don't want to know any more about Zidane, I know enough about him already. He's hateful and hated and stupid and dead...dead. I'm never going to wake up again."
"So you are thinking again...good." She did not seem surprised. He was.surprised that tears had suddenly sprung to his eyes.
"And...you. Who...no, I won't ask, I don't want to know, because I know. It's too hard...you were ruined because of me, everything I did went to further destroy you...you, or her, I know you are her. I don't want to accept that because I can't possibly be talking to her. I saw her life ripped from her before my very eyes...all because I was angry and stupid. Stupid stupid stupid!" He let out a long sob, then kicked the rail with all his might, "Stupid. That's all I'll ever be...so I don't know why you put me through this torture...just let me die. Please...please, I just want to die." His voice was thin, between sobbing and wailing, and it cracked as he spoke one more desperate word. "Please..."
"Oh...Z-n..." She stepped closer and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him into her intimate embrace, her lips finding his and filling them...not a word was spoken for a moment, not a sound...a simple love was exchanged, a love and a sorrow...he still could not make out her face...but he knew her. Tears poured from his eyes as he fiercely returned her kiss, feeling her own tears mingling with his against their skin.
Eiko rolled her eyes up to the ceiling of the airship and tried to ignore the incessant chatter rolling to her from across the row. Orion had found someone as garallous and he. It wasn't possible for there to be anything more annoying than that.
"Gee, I haven't fished for years. I'm probably a little rusty by now, but I swear I was the best fisherman in my village for years. I always brought home five pounds at least."
"Five pounds? Why if I only brought in five pounds I was ashamed of myself. They called me 'the pelican' because I gobbled so many fish up from that lake."
"Oh yeah.? Haha, yeah come to think of it, five pounds does sound like a small number to me as well. I must have been drunk and asleep when I only caught that much."
"Hoho, if I went down to the lake without my pole I could probably catch more than five pounds."
"You fished with your bare hands? So did I! I was also the best in town at-"
"Shutup!" Eiko snapped, looking down to focus a glare on Orion, who looked meekly back at her from mid-brag. "Can you two possibly talk somewhere else?"
The grizzled little fisherman peered up from his squinting eyes at her, then he stood and grinned to Orion, "I guess I'll leave you with your little missy. Nice talking to you."
"It was my pleasure." Orion smiled gallantly up and waved until the man disappeared, then he looked back to Eiko and whined, "I was having fun!"
"Go marry him then. I'm trying to get a little sleep before we get to Treno...it's just a bragging match anyway, you weren't gonna win."
"It was not..." He opened his mouth wide, then paused...and offered mildly, "I would too...what is it so important that you're going to do in Treno, anyway?"
"Oh...I have to find an old friend of mine and ask him some advice...I want to find out from him what exactly happened when the two planets collided."
Orion yawned and leaned back in his seat, "Don't worry about those little things, I'm going to save the world, so all these disturbances really don't mean much."
Orion cocked an offended eyebrow, "Aren't you even the least bit swayed by my good looks?" She simply glared cooly at him. He tried again, "Maybe...just one date?"
His puppy dog actions were driving her insane. Of course, his foolishness had been amusing at first, but after two hours, it grew tedious. And even if he was funny, she would never actually like him. He was a coward and a liar. "No...hey why don't you tell me something. Why is it that you think you're the savior of the world, anyway?"
"Oh...you know, the gods proclaimed it at my birth, the signs all pointed my direction, the elders of the holy temple were led to me by the great light... It's fairly simple."
"But it's all a big hoax. You don't have any special powers or anything...you're just a fool in white armor."
Orion studied her for a moment, then shrugged, "Yeah, I haven't really figured that part out either. But we'll build that bridge when we cross it. Er...or get there, or whatever...hey look! It's Treno!"
Eiko looked down into the night to see the City of Lights glimmering far below them. A relieved smile crept to her face...perhaps now she would finally get some real answers.
Final Fantasy 9 Fanfic