March 2004

Doko kara ka yasashiku hibiku

            I hear a gentle voice from somewhere

Itsu datte kikoeteta you na

            Which might have always heard

Sugu soba ni atta nukumori

            The warmth found just near to me


She smiled and pressed a finger to his lips.

"Don't worry," she said, slipping her hand into his; he was currently blindfolded and hating it.

"I don't like not being able to see you," he had informed her; they had been sitting in their small, charming little house just outside Besaid village. She'd just offered the thick black cloth.

"I'm not going to go anywhere," she had reassured, holding out the fabric. "Trust me."

Of course he would do anything for her; Tidus allowed her to tie the material around his blonde head.

"I'm not worried," he said now, squeezing her hand a little. "But, um, where are we going?"

She had led him to an airship; whether or not it was the Celsius Tidus could not confirm. He settled instead for pestering Yuna about their destination every five seconds or so. He hoped she'd give it up.

She hadn't.

Man, had things changed since her pilgrimage.

He let out a defeated sigh and, being deliberately sulky, began to walk a little slower.

Yuna glanced back at him and giggled. He was pouting, or at least pretending to. She stopped walking and stretched up to kiss his cheek.

"We're almost there," she whispered to his ear, feeling a ripple of nervous excitement shoot through her.

"Where's 'there'?" Tidus retorted quickly; one golden eyebrow rose above the blindfold.

"Somewhere," she answered vaguely, turning to walk again. Tidus groaned.

"Yuna," he whined, frowning. She couldn't help laughing a little; she wondered what he had been like as a child.

The cool night air blew gently, crisply, cutting into the stillness. The water danced and sparkled invitingly only feet away.

"Here." She stopped and pushed him to the water's edge.

"Where's 'here'?" he demanded, resisting her pushing. She stuck her tongue out at him, although he could not see her and rolled her eyes.

"No more questions." She kissed his neck before removing the blindfold.

In front of her, Tidus gave a surprised gasp.

"Yuna …" His voice was a breathless murmur; he looked back at her with wide blue eyes; she peered up at him in hopeful expectancy.

"You wanted to see the Moonflow at night, remember?" she reminded quietly.

He nodded, looking at her in faint disbelief and took her hand.

Yurusu koto de yurusareteta

            I was forgiven by forgiving many things

Haruka mou tooi kako mo

            Including my childhood so long ago

Iyasu tsumori ga iyasareteta

            I was healed, though I intended to heal

Ki ga tsukeba sonna fuu ni

            I've just noticed, in the way

Ai wo toozakeyou to shita boku             That I was saved by love Wa ni sukuwarete ita

            Though I tried to keep love away

"You brought me all this way … just so I could see this?" he asked.

"I wanted you to see it. With me," she said shyly, resting her head against him. He wrapped his arms around her, holding her tightly.

They stood, embracing one another in the soft moonlight; she closed her eyes, delighting in the simple moment.

The pyreflies danced on the water, as though stars had come unstuck from the sky and were now free to skip around the water. Tidus increased his hold on Yuna; there was a square lump in his pocket; it rested lightly against his thigh. The thought of it and what it meant made him nervous. More than nervous. It made him panic and jump for joy and scared shitless; the thought of it made him want to melt into a yellow Tidus puddle at her feet.

And then there was the thought of her answer.

He bit his lip; he didn't even want to go there. He knew what he wanted most in the world; the problem was seizing it, taking the steps necessary to get it. Getting his hands on the square lump had been first.

He'd always hated being faced with the prospect of rejection; his heart beat rapidly in his chest; he thought it just might burst out. He wondered if that had ever happened before.

"I love you," he said suddenly, surprising himself. Yuna blinked and turned her heart-shaped face up to him; her mismatched eyes glowed with pleasure and pride. He was hers; and that caused a fierce possessiveness and pride to burn within her. She knew he loved her; the emotion was everyday implied, but rarely declared. That made the moment, the very word, all the more important. So he said and so she firmly believed.

"Tidus," she whispered, closing her eyes as his lips settled over hers, capturing her in an undemanding, sweet kiss.

Doko kara kimi wa mai ori

            You come down quietly from somewhere

Itsu datte tsutaeta kureru

            And always tell me

Sugu soba ni aru shiawase wo

            Of the happiness just near to me

A baby breeze chased a leaf above them; the wind blew through Yuna's wispy hair, through Tidus's unruly locks; the smell of fresh water and blooming flowers followed, hurrying after its breeze as rapidly as it could. The moon was tender in her light, shining a pale spotlight on two young loves on the banks of a tragic river.

He had saved her. He loved her, knowing she would die, knowing it would only end in misery; both had tried to repress their feelings. By all rights, he should be back in a dream, back in a Zanarkand that never existed. And she should be dead. Dead for something pointless.

And he had changed it all. Tidus came to Spira and here she was, alive and breathing, being thoroughly kissed by the man she loved so much it hurt, a man she could not express her feelings for in words.

Sasenagara sasaerarete

            Supporting you and being supported

Sukoshi zutsu yorisotte

                        I draw close to you little by little

Mamori nagara mamorarete wa

            Protecting and being protected

Kakushin he kawatteku

            I get convinced

Ai woo toozakeyou to shita boku

            That I was saved by love

Wa ai ni sukuwareta n da

            Though I tried to keep love away

"Yuna," he murmured, pulling away.

"I love you," she whispered drowsily, brushing her little nose against his. Tidus thought again of the square lump and his heart skipped a beat. So much meaning for something so small …

"Yuna," he said again; his voice shook just slightly. Man, why was this so hard?

She looked at him, smiling curiously. He drew in a deep breath.

Norikoerare sou ni nai itami naraba

                        If you have a pain to get over

Tomo ni wakeai aruite ikou ka?

                        Shall we share it and walk on?

"Yuna, will you marry me?" he asked, almost before he knew he was going to.

She blinked, staring at him.

Kakekirenu hodo ni yorokobi wo mochiyori

                        Gathering pleasure too big for each of us

Tomo ni wakaei aruite ikou ka?

            Shall we share it and walk on?

"Oh, Tidus."

Oh, God. She was crying. He stared, not sure what to do.

Was that a good sign? He thought about taking the question back.

"Of course I will."

Ima wa kimi dake no tame ni utaou

            I sing this song only to you now


She managed a laugh.

"Yes, really."

Ima wa kimi dake no tame ni utaou

            I sing this song only to you now

He took the lump from his pocket; inside the box—Tidus decided the box frightened him more than the object inside, for whatever reason—lay a beautiful ring; three pale stones set into a pale band of intricate design. He slipped it onto her slender finger. She gazed at it for a long moment, still crying a bit, and unable to say anything.  She kissed him instead, softly, engagingly.

Taisetsu na boku no takaramono yo

            You are my special treasure

He held her; she pressed her face to his chest, clutching at him. He hugged her tightly, drawing the strength from her just to remain on his feet. Overwhelming relief poured through him.

But he grinned in boyish pleasure. She had agreed to marry him. They were getting married. And that was enough, for now, forever.

Taisetsu na boku no takaramono yo

            You are my special treasure