Words left unspoken
I guess my comments last time were confusing, cause I always planned to write this chapter. Technically the ending was the last one, but due to my paranoia over odd numbers, and the fact I wanted to work on sequel this chapter was created.
This is the final chapter though. –sniff- and I'll miss writing this story! It's been over a year of work, and I really like writing about these two. So naturally I have other story plans. But first I'm focusing on my ff9 one, and also my own novel which is nearly completed. After that I'll probably write the short story Non-colour first (I've already written some of it) before working on either this sequel or three years of surviving you (which two chapters have been written). I'll start showing the process of these in my bio for you guys.
Seen as this is the end (for now) I thought I'd add a list of questions left unanswered which will be explained in the sequel (set a year later), lol, just to be evil:
Will Gippal and Rikku make it together?
Will Paine and Baralai get married?
What was Gippal's wedding gift for Yuna and Tidus?
What was the third item Lidea left with Gippal when she died?
Will Lance ever accept that his lover died and didn't leave him?
Why is Gippal's sleeping potion not as effective anymore?
Why was the coma thing so important? What was Cameo's 'secret' plan?
If I missed any, just let me know, cause I'm planning it out soon!
Anyway, all Gippal's thoughts this chapter...I'll shut up now. –sniff- I just can't believe its over! I love writing this! And I love you all! Thank you SO much for your support! Now after 160 pages in font 10 its ended. A total of 110, 548 words (yes, I made it even on purpose). On with the final chapter!
Shakai: lol, probably not with my sequel! Poor guy. The wedding…damn, I wish I hadn't written the chapter already before your review, cause it finishes just before their wedding. But I might add a flashback in the sequel for you! Thank you so much for reading and sticking with me! And here's the end!
FairyIce: Yeah, I'm so mean to him. But I thought it would be unrealistic he kill his father and be fine about it. and I'm glad you liked her speech! I tried really hard for it to sound like someone she'd say. Lol, what are friends for if not to give you a boot up the behind when you need it? Rikku is still so confused and unsure that she needed the advice. I hope this chapter shows that too. Thank you for your support throughout this! I hope you enjoy the final chapter!
Jezzi: Here's the last chapter! And thank you so much for reading! I hope the ending is okay.
kairiyuna14: See, I kept the promise this time! But it was so hard to update, because I didn't want it to end –sniff- but I did. Don't worry! No matter how long it takes I will always read your updates! I love your story! And I hope you like the ending! Thank you so much for your support!
atcw1210: Here you go. Thank you so much for reading!
babiixwolf: this is the last chapter now! I hope you like it! thanks for reading! And don't worry, lol, I can't stop myself writing about these two!
Kotono116: thanks! He's so cool! Their will be other stories, I just can't stop! Hope you like the ending! And thanks for reading!
nightwish635: this is the ending now, but a sequel will happen, not sure when, but I have it in my head. Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoy! (by the way, does your username mean you're a nightwish fan? Cause I love them!)
Three months. Twelve long weeks since the day I killed my father. But it doesn't feel like it.
I hear the dragon's screams every night. I pierce through Cameo's heart every time I blink.
Time is moving slow to heal.
…But I'm trying, I really am. I almost laughed yesterday at one of Lance's dumb jokes. I haven't laughed in so long, I thought I'd forgotten how.
Working helps, with machina you can always forget your problems and concentrate on solutions. Machina are so much simpler to understand, much simpler than my own emotions.
Now isn't that scary.
I can remember on my fourth birthday, just after the beating that almost killed me, how I longed to be a machina. They are programmed their purpose, given no room for emotions. They don't feel pain, and they don't have hearts to be broken.
Its not the usual present a four year old wishes for, as far as I can tell anyway. But that's what I wanted, and now part of me is wishing for that again.
And the other part? That's wishing for her. It longs for her so much…
But I haven't seen her since we buried Cameo. I've been here, watching over his grave. Making sure he stays in it.
I have nightmares now, even in a drugged sleep. I see him burying out, slicing her throat. Taking my Rikku away.
And when I wake up my hand is shaking, and it won't stop until I check the grave, make sure it's untouched, undisturbed.
He may be dead, but he's still alive in my mind. I can't get rid of him. I never will.
How can I see her when I'm like this? When I'm just a shadow of the Gippal she once loved.
This is so hard.
I got an invitation for Yuna's wedding. Apparently they decided to marry quickly before people found out and crashed their small wedding idea. I can see why they'd want to…But it's so soon to see everyone again.
But I did promise to come when I missed their engagement party. And to bring a brilliant gift.
And the one I had in mind back then isn't possible now. I can't build it in three days and get to Besaid in time. I couldn't build it in three weeks. I'll figure something out, because I have to go. I owe it to them.
And I have to see her.
My hands shaking again. I have to go check.
…How am I going to get through this?
The reflected warmth of the rays upon the water was enough to make Rikku smile. Today people would be arriving, ready for Yuna and Tidus' wedding tomorrow.
And she was here, waiting on the beach.
Waiting for him.
She'd had no contact with Gippal since they left him in Djose, none at all. Occasionally Lance would call on the commsphere to ease her mind, but he never contacted her directly.
Gippal had contacted Nooj, Baralai, Paine, even Yuna to confirm his coming, but not once had he asked to talk to her.
And she wasn't entirely sure what that meant, was he avoiding her on purpose? Didn't he want to see her?
Three months of no fighting had been peaceful, but her worry for Gippal had ruined her mood. He was alive, but was he happy? Would he ever find peace like she was trying to?
The noise of the approaching airship made her jump to her feet, her gaze leaving the water and instead searching the clear blue sky. It was easy to spot Bnehlacc, now fully restored to its former glory.
Her heart quickened its pace, and a sick feeling entered her stomach. She longed to see him, but she also dreaded it. What if he was still the same shell she'd seen three months ago? What…what if she'd lost the part of him she loved forever?
Cursing herself for what she was about to do, she turned and ran down the beach, past her approaching cousin without a word of explanation.
"Let her go." She heard Paine's cool voice insist. But she didn't care what they thought, she couldn't face him. Not yet. Not if he was…
I'm such a coward.
I shouldn't be fighting this. I should see him.
But despite her mind saying this, her body wouldn't slow. She ran up the rocks, pausing long enough to punch in the code to open the secret passageway where they'd first found the White Mage dressphere.
She needed to hide right now.
And she could only hope he'd understand.
Gippal had never visited the island before the threat, not even with Cameo. He and his mother had always remained in Luca when he visited here. But Gippal was soon considering it his favourite sight in all of Spira, after Bikenel of course.
He stepped out of the water, the sand beneath his feet making him feel peaceful and belonging. He hadn't felt like that in a long time.
"Hurry up." Nooj grumbled, shuffling off across the beach. Apparently he was still unforgiving about Gippal's water landing. "Brat."
It almost made him smile, almost. But Gippal found it harder to smile than to laugh now. A weird discovery.
"It's not going anywhere." Gippal countered, watching Baralai laugh at their banter.
And neither am I. I'm still Gippal.
"It's about time you got here." Came Paine's impatient voice, giving Baralai a dignified embrace. Gippal was still looking at the sand, gazing around in silent wonder.
"E vunkud ruf payidevim drec bmyla fyc." (I forgot how beautiful this place was.) He murmured. Paine was quiet for a moment before gazing around herself.
"Famm, edc desa oui cdynd nasaspanehk." (Well, its time you start remembering.) She ordered, grabbing his sleeve and pulling him across the beach. Gippal winced at the contact but didn't say anything. Paine was trying to help him, he couldn't deny her that.
"How are you all feeling?" Yuna asked when they reached her, her gaze obviously fixed on Gippal. He shrugged, attempted a flickering smile which didn't work.
"Getting there." He admitted, and she nodded. "I heard Nooj is about to crumble to Leblanc's demands though."
"That's a lie." Nooj glared, leaving no room for argument. Gippal still managed a snort though, just to get his opinion across. It wasn't as large as his usual teasing would be, but it was enough to make him feel like the person he once was.
"Marriage, and so young too." Gippal said to Yuna. "Is this your way of retiring?"
"Maybe." She grinned, in a way which reminded him of her cousin. "I think we're all finished with adventures now, especially…" She stopped, but Gippal knew.
He flinched. Rikku was settling down, he knew she wanted to. But he couldn't anymore, not like the way he'd thought.
I guess we're over then.
"She's hiding." Paine said eventually, making him wince again. "You should go find her."
But Gippal didn't enter the door she indicated to; he just followed them to the village.
If she didn't want him, then he wasn't running after her. Not anymore.
Paine has this annoying habit of making you feel both guilty and stupid. I'm not sure how she does it. But with one look after I passed the door that's how I felt.
Or maybe Paine didn't do it at all.
I long to run in there, find my Rikku and hold her in my arm, never let her go. But she ran from me, and it's unfair to pursue her. I have nothing good to offer, just a shadow of my former self. I can't chase her with only that.
It wouldn't be fair.
I know, I know. Life isn't fair. But Rikku has been through enough. I can't force that on her, she has to want it.
She has to want me, no matter what shape my mind is in.
Please Rikku, please come for me. I'm not strong anymore; I need you to rescue me.
…But you don't want adventure anymore. I'd just be a burden.
…I guess…I guess this is goodbye then.
Rikku sat in the shelter of the cave, gazing unseeingly at the wall.
She'd run, after everything that had happened she'd run from him.
I'm such a…a…
She sighed, drawing her legs to her chest and closing her eyes. She pictured how her life would have been if she were brave; if she had stayed on the beach and faced him. If she'd continue fighting for him.
But I'm so tired of fighting.
She couldn't be the support Gippal would need; she couldn't be a reliable strength anymore. She was through with that, and it tore her heart to pieces.
She hated herself for that.
Why couldn't she fight for him? Why, after all they'd been through, couldn't she accept the responsibility of healing his mind?
Because if she did; and he remained the same, she would be failing him.
And she couldn't bare that thought. Not after everything he'd done for her. He'd lost his eye to save her, given her up in hope she could be happy. And then he'd fought to get her back during their journey, he'd told her about his past even though he wanted to just forget it. He'd done so much, and even though he sometimes failed, it didn't matter.
But if she failed him on this, it would. It would matter so much.
She couldn't fight a losing battle, she couldn't watch as she slowly lost her best friend, her one true romance.
A sob escaped her, a desperate plea she wouldn't say with words.
She needed him to be okay again. She needed to be with him.
Fayth Gippal please!
Another sob escaped her, hidden amongst the cave's darkness.
She needed him, but she couldn't risk losing him. She'd rather stay away from him for good.
I'm sorry Gippal. I'm sorry.
It was strange to enter the village at first. Had it really been a little over three months since he was last here? He felt as though a lifetime had gone by since he'd flown here, desperate to help Rikku against the machina attack. He was a completely different person now.
"Here you are!" Came a loud voice he instantly recognised. "Been a while ya?"
"Hey Wakka." Gippal muttered, feeling instantly more at ease with his surroundings. "Sorry about that."
"No problem, as long as you're doing better." Wakka smiled, giving him a gentle pat on the shoulder. Gippal resisted the urge to move away. He just didn't like being touched still.
Gippal nodded as his answer, still not managing a smile. But Wakka seemed to understand he was pleased to be there, despite his lack of facial expression.
"Look, I know you probably don't want to bring it up again but…You did the right thing, no matter what alright? I would do the same thing for the ones I love."
Gippal blinked at this, and to his horror found he was blushing. He hadn't expected this from Wakka, a former Al Bhed hater, a father.
I guess it did make sense. He knew what it felt like to be so protective over someone, so protective that he'd make them safe no matter what.
But it was embarrassing that even Wakka knew how much she meant to him. He did have a certain image to uphold… well, sort of.
"What, ya think we couldn't tell she means the world to you?" Wakka laughed, making Gippal wrinkle his nose at him. "Nothing that happens can change that."
And that's when it happened, after three months Gippal smiled. Because he knew it was true, no matter what happened he would still feel the same for her.
"Yes! See that Lu? I told ya I'd get him beaming." Wakka laughed as his wife exited their tent house. Gippal was shaking his head, but the smile wouldn't disappear. It felt so good to smile! And it was because of thoughts of her.
I love you, nothing can change that. You must know that, right?
Will it be enough? Will it be enough for you to fight with me? Fight for what we had? What we could have again?
"Paine, can I talk to you a minute?" Gippal suddenly burst, surprising everyone. He didn't mean to sound rude, but he needed to do this. Now.
"…I guess." She said uncertainly.
"We're going to the beach then, sorting out the plans for tomorrow." Lulu said, handing baby Vidina over to Gippal before he could protest.
"We don't want him getting cranky by taking him too, ya?" Wakka chuckled, following behind his wife and friends. "Just keep an eye on him."
Silence reigned over the two left, Gippal staring uncertainly at the baby in his arms, lost in thought.
"…So, what do you want to talk about?" Paine asked. Gippal looked up, seeing from the look in her eyes she was fully aware of what he was doing.
"I think you know Dr.P, its time we had that talk."
Damn Wakka, he's clever. Make me see how much I love her, dump a baby in my arms while I'm trying to have one of my best friends open up so they won't make the mistake I did.
Weird tactic I must admit, but I am a genius, I can still see what he's up to.
Just because I was reminded of how much I love her doesn't mean I know what to do. So he throws a baby at me to remind me.
…Okay, that sounded bad. I didn't mean it like that.
Its not like he's saying 'go forth and have sex with Rikku to have psychotic kids', he's saying that she's my family, and sometimes it isn't easy, but it's always worth it.
After what happened with my parents I lost sight of that. I had it with Rikku, but I never realised it. And now I have to make her see it. That even though it's hard it's always worth it, even if you fail. You just have to make it through.
My childhood was the hard part; Rikku was the after part, the part which made it worth it all. But I haven't got her yet, I have to prove her what we have.
And I have to be the one fighting now, Rikku shouldn't have to. I have to be strong; I have to be the person I was, the person she loves. And I have to be the one to chase her, whether she wants me or not. Whether it's fair she will be with me or not. Because we need each other, we always have.
Those two years apart after Home was awful, I felt part of me was missing. And I never even realised how bad it was until I was with her again.
I can't lose her again. No matter what.
I'm selfish. I needed to kill Cameo. But I need her too. I can't just have one.
And I won't lose my family just because I've changed. My friends are my family, I won't let Paine be afraid to face her past. I won't leave her to get in the state I'm in. She's family, and even though she might hate me for it, I won't take no for an answer.
From either of them.
"I don't want to talk about this right now." Paine muttered.
Gippal just stared at her, refusing to be intimidated. It was hard work though.
"Paine, look at me." He demanded, almost shivering as her glare turned to him. "Really look at me. Do you want to turn out like this? Do you want to be a mess because you're scared of what happened?"
"…I'm not scared." Paine said through gritted teeth.
"It's alright Dr. P." They were quiet for a long time; obviously she wasn't going to say anything willingly. "Let me take a guess from what I know of you then." He got no reply, so he continued. "You're guarded, sometimes incredibly cold; you admire those who live despite…setbacks, like Nooj. And I almost lost your trust because I couldn't cope. Don't become what you hate Paine."
She turned away from him, and Gippal continued to stare at her back while Vidina squirmed in his arms.
"Paine, I know it's hard. But look at me, I faced my past, and yeah I was screwed for a while…but look now. I have a little kid in my arms, the arms I used to kill my father. You can have a life beyond your past, but if you don't face it soon, it could destroy you. I don't want to see you lose what you have."
"…I'm not like you Gippal…my past is different."
"I know, from what I can guess…I'd say yours was a different type of…abuse." Her shoulders stiffened at this, and Gippal knew he was right. "But you've got past the physical damage of it, you've still been able to love someone, have them close to you. Now you just have to be open with Baralai, or your friends. Don't let it haunt you Paine. Tell him. He'll understand. He'll still love you."
And that's when he knew. He'd known Paine for years, but he'd never seen her as vulnerable as that moment. She opened up to him, let him see her past. No matter how hard it was, she told him about it. And it saved both of them.
Because it made Gippal certain of what he had to do.
When the others returned from the beach they found Paine sat near the centre fire; bouncing baby Vidina on her knee, smiling. The sight made Baralai smile, something was different about her; she seemed more relaxed, as though a great burden was gone.
"Hey." She said casually as they approached. "I think he'd ready for a feeding."
Lulu took him from her with a smile and headed for her tent while the others stared at Paine. She was still smiling.
"Where's Gippal?" Yuna asked.
"He went to talk some sense into Rikku. It might take them a while, don't worry." Paine yawned. She glanced at Baralai, giving him a smile. And he understood. He knew she was ready to talk.
He always understood her. And she knew he'd understand what she had to say.
She just hoped Rikku and Gippal could be the same.
It took him a while to find her; somehow he'd managed to go down the wrong tunnel. But finally he saw her. Leaning against the cold wall, dry tears on her face; asleep.
Did I make her cry?
He sat opposite her, just gazing at her beautiful face. His heart was aching at the sight. But if he woke her, he might not be allowed to see it again.
"Whosthat?" Rikku muttered sleepily, her swirling eyes fixing on him.
"Hi." He said awkwardly. "I came looking for you."
"Oh." Not much of a response, but he understood. She didn't expect this, she'd just come to avoid him.
"Yeah." He agreed. They remained silent, Gippal taking quick glances at her when she didn't notice. The last three months apart had made her appear even more beautiful. It was almost scary.
"The others are all doing wedding plans at the beach, I got bored." He babbled. "Had a long chat with Dr. P though, I think it helped both of us…"
"Why are you here Gippal?" Rikku interrupted, sounding tired. Gippal's hand was shaking now, and she noticed it with a sigh.
He ignored it and looked at Rikku, waiting until she was gazing his way before answering.
"I came for you silly. Even though you might not want me to."
"Look," He interrupted, sitting on his hand to stop it shaking. "I know it's not fair of me to ask you, but I love you Rikku. You're my family, you're the reason my past doesn't seem so bad; it led me to you.
"…I know you don't want to fight anymore, but I'm asking you to anyway." He noticed a tear run down her cheek, but continued. "It's asking a lot, especially when I'm like this now. I can't guarantee we'll make it Rikku, but I want to try. I…I need you. And I know you don't want to hear that, but it's true. Please…"
He didn't get any further, because that's when she burst into tears. And despite that, he smiled, he smiled and cupped her face in his hands.
"I love you."
He didn't know how long they stayed there, but soon he was hugging her tightly, crying with her. Being with her.
…I don't know if we'll make it. I don't know what will happen from here. But I know this. No matter what, I love you, no matter how bad I may seem; or how awful what I did might feel. Part of me did it for you Rikku.
Those are my words left unspoken, the words you don't understand, but they're still real. It's still the truth.
…And you never know, maybe in time you'll know that. You'll see how much I care; you'll know that I am the same man I used to be.
No matter what, no matter how bad it gets, remember this Rikku.
Remember what you mean to me, and what we promised.
Together we'll make it. I know it.
I promise you that. I promise.
We just have to try; we have to fight a little longer. And I'll fight for you, no matter what.
No matter what.