~"A groan of tedium escapes me, startling the fearful. Is this a test? It has to be. Otherwise I can't go on."~

Eternity. That word was so elusive, so many meanings behind it. So many romantic poets from all the different worlds tried to capture the feeling in their words. The first world's attempts were lost in the abyss of time, save for the prophecy of the Princess of the Annai and the world's mortality. That hung like an execution sentence. That became the background to define some desperate need to define eternal.

Asu, the beautiful world, defined it best as memory. That dead soulless world with one haunted survivor left. Eternity was fleeting, transient, gorgeous from what it left behind.

Asuraitsu had no such philosophy. They worshipped the sun, simply put. Such fanatical devotion placed in the hands of a celestial body that would die in only a few billion years was no basis to contemplate eternity. They believed in a lie.

Idou knew this, believed it, breathed it in every day since he turned his back on his zealous brethren. Every day he woke up to the sun he would stare at it and realize that it was not godly at all. So he turned his back on them and sought to ally himself with the being they called the Dusk- bringer. Lord Kura.

He didn't do it to spite them. He did it to save them. Save them all, not just Asuraitsu. You can't change the fate of the world by yourself. Idou knew that he had to find someone else with more resources, more power, if he was going to be able to change things before their moment of living ended.

Idou didn't believe in eternity. He believed that all life was precious. And because there's no such thing as eternity one must do everything in one's power to savor that short time.

The irony of this is that Idou was one of the immortal wielders of the legendary living weapons. They weren't really immortal, they just lived far longer than anyone else. Idou was over a millennium old, but that was long enough to know that his beloved Zenith Crystal was only prolonging the inevitable. They weren't immune from the ending that was destined to befall the world. They could only hope to avoid it for as long as they could.

He had killed two wielders to prove his point. The first was the Dusk- bringer in an act of betrayal, back when he still had hope that perhaps if the Girl of the Choosing could prove him wrong. He and the wielder of the Geo-Pyro rebelled to follow the Princess, despite Kura's violent opposition. They followed for different reasons of course, but somewhere Idou felt grateful that he was not alone in his choice.

Because he never felt more alone when he turned back to Kura and thrust his halberd into the Geo ruler's chest. The battle was almost pitifully short since Kura had spent all his time in luxury and partitioning his Nox Light's power amongst the loyal. Idou was a soldier for centuries and his skill was unquestionably superior. So Kura faltered in his pursuit, Idou executed him, and then mourned his passing.

It wasn't that they were friends. Idou was only a useful servant to Kura and Idou found personal distaste in his ally's dictates. Yet they spent three hundred years in each other's company when everyone else became fleeting memories. It was long enough for Idou to almost forget that things were transient.

And then Kura was dead.

Kaguya, despite her best efforts, failed of course. Apparently the first world was right in their prediction. Only one world could be saved, there was no such thing as eternity because everything was fated to die. Just because Kaguya's coming was enough to change events from their destined paths didn't mean she could change the inescapable. One person can't change the fate of the world. Even if others desperately want to help, they were not fated to help her change things. One person can't create what isn't there. And everything is destined to die.

Kaguya fulfilled her destiny.

~"If there were no rewards to reap, No loving embrace to see me through this tedious path I've chosen here, I certainly would've walked away by now. And I still may. And I still may. And I still may."~

It was four hundred years since her death. Idou was still here, waiting on the solitary decaying world for the inevitable. He still tried his best to accommodate the remaining survivors as best he could, but his heart was not in it as it used to be. For some reason the beauty of life's fleeting nature had lost his interest. He had become so tired of living, so exhausted of ensuring that others lived, that he only remained on this fragile globe because he could not find the effort to die.

"Old man."

"You don't need to call me that," Idou murmured somberly. "In the long run my three century head-start hardly matters anymore in comparison to our mutual years."

Bambi stood beside him from nowhere. The only other immortal left in this world. They rebelled together, they fought for the same side. They both mourned Kaguya's passing. But they were never close. They simply remained.

The Geo-Pyrogate flared once before vanishing into her possession. "To me, you are still an old man."

"Hah, very well. But you are no longer the young girl you used to be."

"To me, this time is inconsequential no matter how long it is," Bambi said without emotion. It was only out of their longstanding habit did she breech Idou's space, but the gesture wasn't intimate. "I'm simply waiting until..."

Idou's eyes closed tight, blocking out the image of longing flickering on Bambi's cold features. It was the sole indicator that she was talking about Kaguya, and Idou did not want to think about her anymore. "Don't you think we could make a difference now though? What's important is the present. People are starving because the land is giving out. If we pooled our efforts into it now perhaps we could revive-"

"That is of no consequence."

"You have to eat as well," Idou retorted through gritted teeth. He didn't want to fight her on this, he had little enough strength to push himself as it was.

"I can suffice. It is of no consequence to me that others do as they please."

"Starving isn't a matter of choice. Neither is dying of exposure, or sickness. These people...they're so afraid because they know that they're going to see the end of the world. Or their children. Or if they're very lucky, the children of their children's children will suffer that fate."

"So what does it matter if I do anything at all? The world is going to die anyway."

Bambi understood there was no such thing as eternity. Just like Idou. The difference was that she saw meaning in actions, not in mortality. She thought transience was really an obstacle to be overcome in the course of doing something important. The main rift occurred in their values of what was important.

"We have the chance to do something. What's the point of living all this time just to wait!" Idou shouted, his rage and helplessness spilling out. His darkened skin turned pale with his growing anxiety. "What matters is the moment! There has to be something for us to do now, or else..." his eyes locked onto hers, his hands grasped hers and engulfed them in his callused eon held palms. "We can't just live our lives waiting. You fought with me once, you cared what happened. That doesn't just stop because you decide to quit."

"You're so afraid of waiting," Bambi replied calmly. Her words were calculating, painful. "You can't bear to hesitate because it means you're wasting precious time."

He didn't hesitate to kill Seeu. That much was true. Seeu attacked Bambi and Idou attacked Seeu. It was instinctive. Instantaneous. The centuries- old alliance both shared in bygone days didn't afford a flicker of a second before Idou charged in with his Zenith Crystal.

The moment was more important.

Idou let go of her hands. "I had waited far longer than you for Kaguya's coming, before you were not yet created. I had fought and lost many allies preparing for her. I waited, and when she came I made my move. But it wasn't enough. We still failed. Kaguya still failed."

"You're wrong old man," Bambi seethed in genuine hurt.

"Am I? She gave you a reason to fight and all you do is wait for her."

"She gave you a reason to wait and all you do is fight against it."

"Saving people may very well be the only course left for us. Perhaps it all we can ask for to ensure that a family survives the end of the world. Maybe we can save more than Kaguya's and Kagami's. Perhaps that will tip the scales."

It was then that Idou knew he had coerced her support. No matter how futile their efforts might be he knew the prospect of ensuring another chance to help Kaguya would convince Bambi to strive alongside him.

"The only reason I continue to live is so I can once again be reunited with Kaguya," Bambi whispered softly.

"I know." Idou didn't have the heart to tell her that they would die in the final cataclysm. They could live as long as the sun but that didn't mean that they would live forever. Certainly not past the end of the world to where a single child would be born in the aftermath of everything. No matter how long they lived she was beyond their reach. They would die before her birth.

There was no such thing as eternity after all.

~"I'm gonna wait it out Be patient. I must keep reminding myself of this..."~

A/N: Lyrics from Tool's "The Patient"