Author: freakyanimegal PM
He panted, holding the area over his heart where a gaping hole had just been, stunned, then jolted as the four-armed figure grabbed him by the collar and lifted him off his feet. "It's time to wake" The fiery feeling erupted into an inferno. cover pic by SymphoniafanRated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Lloyd I. - Chapters: 16 - Words: 41,894 - Reviews: 209 - Favs: 82 - Follows: 91 - Updated: 03-09-13 - Published: 03-23-11 - id: 6843808
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Dear Lloydie how I love you, mwahahahah x3
Disclaimer: I own nothing
"I don't want to talk about it!"
His brown eyes were glued stubbornly on the mountain path before them, trying to ignore his pulse pounding in his ears with every heavy step he took, dirt kicking up into the air as he went. They were still trying to talk about it. Why? What was the point in it? It was over, and they had nothing to go on! They told Zelos and Presea about him, about what happened in Sylvarant, and they in turn had told the Sages about Kate, about how she knew something about his…state. Still, there was nothing else to discuss! Even the Professor had said that they were getting nowhere, that they were just talking in circles like they had before.
Then why couldn't Zelos shut the hell up!?
"Look, Bud, it's just-"
"It's weird, strange, freaky, unnatural, scary, anything else you want to add? Hm?" Lloyd snapped, his eyes flashing dangerously as they narrowed on the man.
"Woah woah! Okay, okay! I'll shut up, just chill!"
Lloyd growled, attempting to go back to his task of keeping his eyes fixated on the trail. He didn't even know if his eyes were brown again yet….or if they even would become brown again. He shoved the thought from his mind, along with many other things. It felt like keeping his mind together in itself was a battle, not simply from those thoughts, but from…everything. Feelings kept assaulting him, sensations, like the lapping of water on a beachfront, slowly edging in on him, breaking him down, little by little, easing into his very being-
No. He shook his head. No. No enough thoughts like that, he was going to ignore it, all of it.
…how long could he ignore it, though?
The reached the mountain top. Then it was things got…eventful. Lloyd had barely taken a step onto the grass when he felt his spine seize up, his muscles tensing.
He held out an arm, stopping his friends as his eyes locked on one of the large boulders, narrowing.
"I know you're there," he said. "Come out. Now."
He knew they were there after all, he could feel them, the two of them. The mana, the years….both of them, the years…
"I told you that wouldn't do anything," a voice scoffed as its owner emerged, the blue-haired Renegade glaring at his companion.
"It was I that told you that," the baritone answered. "It doesn't matter now at any rate."
The group froze, staring as the two Seraphim appeared before them. Lloyd's fingers were curled at his sides, doing his best to try to ignore the ….'years'. He felt them, waves of mana, crashing against his mind. Was it just Kratos or-? No, it was Yuan too, they were both….the same. In…in that way, anyway, he couldn't quite make himself think clearly-
"It happened again, didn't it?" Kratos spoke, drawing his attention. "You changed-"
"As a matter of fact, no, only his eyes have," Raine interrupted, her tone defensive. "But if you mean that he pulled some godlike feat, then yes, he did."
'Have', not 'did'? Wait- where his eyes still white? Was that why there were all- why didn't anyone say anything? Why-?
His teeth gritted.
"What are you two doing here? Why are you both here? Aren't you enemies? What's going on!"
He felt it pulse. What 'it' was he couldn't quite explain, mana? Or was it deeper than that? Was it…
"Calm down, Lloyd," Kratos said quickly. "We're not here to fight."
"As if we could win," Yuan muttered darkly, eying the teen warily.
"Huh? What do you-…you know, don't you? You know what's happening to me, just like those researchers in Sybak."
"Sybak researchers?" Yuan frowned. "I doubt that-…half-elven ones? Half-elven researches at Sybak 'know'?"
"It's possible," Kratos said, glancing at him. "I'm certain Raine and Genis have sensed it, but growing up in Sylvarant they wouldn't know enough to make the correct conclusion."
"Stop ignoring us!" Lloyd snapped.
"All right, all right!" Yuan said quickly. "We won't ignore you, just calm down, please…."
It was hard to breathe for some reason; his mind kept…it was getting harder to think. It was easy to feel though, quite easy, easy to feel his frustration and indignation toward the two men. They were all tense, he could feel them, he could feel their muscles tightened- all of them, could feel the pulses of their hearts, the dryness of their throats…
"Lloyd, listen to me," Kratos said slowly, approaching him as one would approach a frightened animal. "We are not here to fight, we are not here to take the Chosen. Lloyd, this is very important….yes, we do know what's happening to you, but we can't talk about it here. Lloyd, it's very important that you calm down, if he senses you, everyone will be in danger."
"Everyone as in?" Raine interjected sharply, obviously distrusting of the man.
"Everything that lives," Kratos said flatly.
What was he talking about? Everything that-….no, no he was right. He wasn't sure why he was right but…he could feel it, under him, above him, around him….the entire world was swathed in it- …no, the world wasn't swathed in it, he was swathed in the world. The world itself, everything in it, on it, through it-
He felt another pulse and his eyes closed, releasing a deep breath.
Everything felt better, suddenly, everything felt…fine, felt…perfect, invigorating, peaceful, everything that could be good, all at once-
Then he felt it.
He choked, falling onto his hands and knees, coughing up saliva. His friends had swarmed him quickly, but he couldn't pay attention to them right now. He felt it, he felt what was wrong with the world. It was like…looking at some beautiful animal, some large, strong, awe-inspiring creature, seeing it from its side and marveling at its health, beauty and power; then suddenly seeing the other side, and seeing a gaping, festering wound. The world- the entire world, both worlds, were that animal, and they both bore that horrible wound- the same wound, the scars of separation. The world wasn't…supposed to be like this, no, it was wrong, it- it- he couldn't- no- it was- it- he had to fix it. He had to fix it! He couldn't allow this! Couldn't allow it to continue like this, couldn't-
Every image of suffering he had seen in his life suddenly flashed through his mind. The human ranches, the people dying, tortured, suffering, the starving poor of Sylvarant, the ill, the wounded, the crippled. Not even just the people, the thin wildlife rooting for sustenance, the vegetation writhing from the lack of water, the- the world, not even just Sylvarant, in Tethe'alla too! People starving, scrounging to get by, clinging to life.
"Stop it…stop it…" he choked, feeling his body shake.
It hurt. It twisted inside him, as if some clawed fist had dug into his heart and was twisting it this way and that, as if his stomach was boiling.
"Stop it…" he said again, feeling hot tears stream down his face.
It was wrong. Death, disease, starvation, they were normal, they were simply part of it, it was inevitable, but this- this was…this was wrong. This wasn't natural, this was a forced situation, this was the world being leeched of mana and everything suffering for it, this was people being kicked underfoot, beaten, neglected and starved by other people. This was…
No, no no no, no- NO! NO!
He had shrieked at the top of his lungs, his fingers dug tightly into the dirt, his shoulders quivering dangerously. He hacked and spat, gasping for air as he abruptly found his senses back with his body.
"Stop it…." he whimpered quietly. "Stop…"
Then his body collapsed and his mind went silent along with it.
"Look, you have no idea how important it is that we-"
"Well obviously it's not that important if you can't tell us. We're not handing him over; do you think we're stupid? Leave. Now."
"Look if we wanted to hurt any of you, we could have by now!"
"Then why don't you just take him by force? Hm?"
A moment of silence.
"Because we can't."
"Oh? Why is that then, hm?'
Where was he? Who was talking? Raine and….Yuan, he thought, yeah…and that one time…Kratos? Yes, what were they doing here? Where were they? It sounded like Raine and the others had things under control but…
He felt his eyelids flicker and he let out a soft groan, pushing himself up into a sitting position. His head throbbed and for a moment he was certain that he would be sick. Raine instructed him to take deep breathes, which he did, finally opening his eyes to scan the people around him. Raine was frowning at his side and he noticed some of the others to the other side of his bed. He wasn't sure he recognized the place at first, then after a quick look realized he must be in Zelos' mansion, judging by the size of the room.
Kratos and Yuan were on the other side of Raine.
"What- what are you doing here?" he asked instantly, feeling a quick jerk down his spine.
"Before you ask, no, we're not here for the Chosen, she's right over there." Yuan pointed to the side, where the soulless girl stood. "She's not our priority right now."
Lloyd frowned, scanning the two Seraphim and then back at Colette. While he tried to gather his thoughts Kratos approached, Raine standing between them, cutting him off.
"Let me speak with him," Kratos said, his voice calm though his fingers curled anxiously around the hilt of his sword.
"I told you both to get out."
"Professor, let me talk to them."
The half-elf blinked, surprised, and honestly Lloyd was a bit surprised by his own decision as well. Still, she stepped to the side, allowing Kratos to approach him with Yuan right behind.
For a moment, Lloyd could only look at them, feeling the waves of years radiating from them. He …wasn't quite sure what it meant, really… Years, that was all he knew, they 'had years'…many of them. They were- dammit he couldn't get his mind wrapped around it. Kratos frowned, seeming to consider a moment before he spoke.
"Lloyd, do you…do you have any idea what's happening?"
Lloyd just looked at him. He searched his mind for a response but found it oddly blank, emptied, tired.
"I sense things," he said flatly. "I feel things and I make things happen sometimes, and I…change. That's all I know, that and that you guys and those people in Sybak know more about it than I do…"
He looked down, his fingers curling into the covers. That really was it, wasn't it? That was it, everything except-
"Cenon," he said. "I keep getting called Cenon. What is it? What's Cenon?"
Kratos frowned, looking back at Yuan, who didn't seem to be very happy. The Renegade shook his head and Kratos turned back to Lloyd.
"Is that really all you know, Lloyd? Is that really everything?"
Lloyd frowned, feeling frustration beginning to build up.
"Yes. Of course that's all I know, if I knew anything else then I wouldn't be in this situation now would I?" he snapped, glaring up at the man. "That's it. That, and that you know what it is, and whatever it is you're too afraid of it to try to hurt us."
Kratos frowned, seemingly at a loss for words. It didn't matter, as Yuan took up the silence for a chance to speak.
"We don't know what's going on much more than you do," he said, crossing his arms over his chest. "What we do know is that you're inhibiting a staggering amount of mana, and that if Yggdrasill finds out he'll stop at nothing to get at you. For the Chosen, he's willing to wait to try to obtain her discretely; he won't do the same if he finds out about you. The short version is if your new 'developments' are discovered you all will have no choice at all of ever saving the Chosen or any of your other friends, much less the world."
Lloyd went to speak but the man continued.
"I'll get straight to the point. It's not safe for you to be gallivanting around and none of us will learn anything. It's in all our best interests if you come to one of the Renegade bases so my researchers can-"
"No," Kratos cut in sharply, his eyes narrowing on Yuan. "You are not taking him-"
"Oh and you are? Not a chance in hell, regardless of your motivations, Cruxis will have their hands all over him in a minute if you so much as-"
"He's not going with anyone but us!" Genis shouted, rushing up to Raine's side. "If you're really so scared of him or about him or whatever, then just stay out of our way and leave us all alone!"
"Look, I'm not leaving here without him," Yuan snapped, stepping forward. "You want to restore the Chosen's soul? I can do that-"
"We have no way of knowing you're telling the truth," Raine retaliated.
Yuan's eyes narrowed dangerously.
"If I need to get a certain dwarf that lives near Iselia involved in this, I will," he hissed. "I can have my men on his doorstep in a matters of minutes-"
"Yuan!" Kratos snapped, his eyes widening slightly.
Yuan then realized he'd made a very dire mistake.
The hanging lamps surged, the excess electricity surging from the wires and channeling themselves right at the Renegade. Yuan barely put up a mana field in time to stop himself from becoming fried. The Sages quickly backed away just as Lloyd swung his legs over and set his feet on the floor. Lloyd stepped forward, sparks flicking on his fingertips.
"Don't you dare threaten my Dad," he said, his voice dropping an octave.
It felt like fire was surging in his arms, that same euphoric inferno that he had felt that first time- when it had all happened, surging in his heart. He saw Yuan's wide emerald eyes and heard someone shout, but he couldn't pay them any mind, couldn't bring himself to. His bare hand launched through Yuan's shield, shattering the barrier and quickly wrapping around Yuan's throat. He could feel his pulse racing, could feel it circulating through his body, the veins, the muscles, the nerves, every little cell working tirelessly, frantically trying to continue to supply oxygen to the brain. It would be so easy to shut it all down-
It was like a flash of light, like a smothered candle had suddenly flared back up into flame, light, warmth, life-
His head whipped around, spotting her blue eyes wide in horror, racing for him. He quickly drew his hand and his senses away from his target, turning to the blonde girl instead. Before he could say her name she had wrapped her arms around him, burying her face in his chest.
"Don't! Lloyd- don't! Stop it! Please- please go back to normal! Please- stop!"
She seemed taller suddenly- or…had he gotten shorter? He wrapped his arms around her, feeling his fury and his sensing dim.
"Co…lette? You're…" he whispered, stunned.
She looked up at him, relief visibly flooding her expression.
"Lloyd! Lloyd you're-" she hugged him tightly again. "Oh thank goodness…you're back to normal…."
Normal? Had he not been normal-...had- had he changed again? He was sure he hadn't- had he? It seemed very confusing, very vague now, all that he had really …all he really remembered was getting angry and then attacking Yuan. He blinked, turning back toward the Seraph in question. The half-elf was panting on the ground a few feet away, Kratos releasing a steady stream of healing mana to his companion. Kratos was whispering something to him but he couldn't make out the words. The swordsman lifted his eyes and met Lloyd's, a strange mix of emotions flashing through the russet eyes before they broke contact and the man stood, supporting Yuan albeit with obvious disapproval toward the half-elf.
"We'll leave," Kratos said flatly. "…Though the crest may have restored the Chosen's soul, I'd advise against keeping it on. It will doubtlessly endanger her."
"Are you guys leaving or not?" Sheena snapped, stepping forward and drawing out one of her paper seals.
Kratos frowned but said nothing more, quite suddenly disappearing with Yuan in a surge of mana.
"Hey- wait- what just…?" Lloyd shook his head, looking around at his companions.
"Well his eyes aren't freaky anymore and he did scare the shit out of that angel there, so I guess this is a win, yeah? Especially with cute little Colette here getting her soul back. Not a bad afternoon," Zelos commented.
His eyes? So had they really not changed back sense the bridge? He quickly looked around the room, spotting a mirror and dashing over to it. He nearly sighed in relief when he saw his own brown eyes looking back at him, his own, normal, reflection.
"We should head for Sybak as soon as possible," Raine spoke up. "We need to figure out what Kate knows about Lloyd's condition, and we also need to free Presea from her experiment."
Lloyd frowned at that, still staring into his own eyes in the mirror. His reflection..a reflection was what had started this whole mess, wasn't it? That reflection in the water that replaced his own…
He turned, Colette smiling up at him.
"Don't worry Lloyd, you'll be okay, we're going to help you."
Lloyd stared at her a moment feeling extremely sheepish and selfish all of a sudden.
"N- Colette, don't worry about me." He shook his head, turning to face her. "I- I'm just glad you're all right! I thought for sure that the crest had failed, I'm so glad you're back to normal."
She smiled at him and for a moment, he really believed that he would in fact be all right.
…Chicken? *eating chicken* My chicken .