Bit of romance fluff with a tiny bit of angst in it :) Lloyd and Colette pairing, unsurprisingly :)
For those who have never experienced true love, but who know how wonderful it would be.
Disclaimer: No, I don't own Tales of Symphonia, I love it, but I don't own it.
He hated seeing her unhappy, sitting staring into the fire, obviously hurting inside. Well, obviously to him, the others didn't seem to pick up on the fact that the little blonde wasn't happy. Perhaps because she was a good actress, able to convince people that things were just fine with her when, he knew, they weren't.
He frowned, he wasn't happy because she wasn't happy. He didn't know what was wrong, but he had the overwhelming urge to make her feel better. He stood up and walked over to her, a blanket in his arms, and sat down beside her, wrapping the blanket around them both. He hoped she wouldn't mind him doing that, that she wouldn't shrug it off, cross that he would make a friendly gesture in view of everyone else. She didn't, and actually pulled the warm fabric tighter around her. He smiled. He knew really that she wouldn't be cross, she always seemed to appreciate his friendly gestures before, but since he'd begun to look at her in a different way he was always afraid of her rejecting him. It was a nasty fear, he didn't know what he'd do if she rejected him and his friendship. Perhaps, he thought, that was why he hadn't said anything to her about his developing feelings for her, about how he was noticing how beautiful she was, not just her body, but her soul, her whole being, and how special she was to him. How he wanted to hold her close, and always be with her.
He shook his head very gently, clearing it. He hasn't moved to sit beside her to have a conversation with himself, he'd come over to sit and talk to her.
"Alright?" he asked quietly."Mmm," she said non-committedly.
"Stars are pretty tonight, aren't they?" he decided to talk about something insignificant, see if he could get her to open up that way.
"Like always," she said, smiling and gazing up at the bright dots of light that seemed to hang magically in the sky.
"Comforting, to see them all up there, isn't it?" he smiled, his gaze turning to the sky as well.
"Yeah," she sighed, and he knew he was right, something was wrong. But he also knew she wouldn't want the others to know.
"Want to go for a little walk?" he offered quietly. She sat contemplating the offer for a moment then nodded and stood up, her share of the blanket slipping off her and onto the ground beside him. He stood and wrapped all of the blanket around her before slowly walking away from the campfire, staying beside her protectively.
Once they'd gotten out of earshot of their companions he sat down on a comfey looking patch of grass and patted the spot next to him, asking her to sit beside him. She did so, slumping down and sighing.
"So, what's wrong?" he said quietly in a caring tone, his eyes on her. She was staring at the ground, twiddling a blade of grass in her hand.
"I just, I just, I, I, I can't explain it," she said quietly, but in a tone that indicated she was clearly frustrated. "I just feel kinda, well, meh."
He nodded, understanding.
"You're tired right?" he asked.
"I, yeah, I mean I know I should be happy, we're working towards a great goal, something that could make everyone's lives better, and we've gotten the chance to do so many things we'd never have the chance to do if we hadn't gone on this journey, but, I just long for a warm bed to call my own and to not be threatened by a million and one different things that would like us to be dead every day," she sighed, then shook her head. "That's selfish, I'm sorry, I shouldn't say things like that."
"No, Colette, it's not selfish at all. You're human, not some super magical being. Battling monsters is tiring, and there's definitely something nice about knowing where you'll sleep each night instead of not even knowing if you'll be sleeping under the roof of some inn or the stars. We've been through an awful lot, so many challenges, you more than the rest of us, it's hard," he said.
"But I'm the Chosen, I should be able to put up with the difficult challenges presented to me, I should get on with helping the world be a better place, not complain about these things," she said, still staring at the ground.
"No, you're Colette, a wonderful, lovely person who shouldn't be asked to go through hell. Yes, our quest has an important goal, what we'll do if we succeed, and believe me, I do intend to succeed, we've done too much to lose now, is an amazing thing. But at the end of the day we're still just a bunch of humans and half-elves who have feelings, who get tired, who need comfort and security, just like everyone else," he blushed, wondering if he'd said too much, that he'd offend or scare her.
"Lloyd, I," she looked up, her eyes staring into his. They were still sad, and had a glint in them that told him she was on the verge of tears, but were not as sad as they had been. She began to sob quietly and he moved to wrap his arms around her. He felt he needed to hold her when she cried, that he wanted to protect her, comfort her, let her know he was there and wanted for everything to be alright.
As soon as he had his arms around her he began to fret again. What if she didn't want him to hug her, what if he made her mood worse rather than better because of the gesture?
It was a huge relief when she snuggled closer to him and didn't try to push him away, instead quietly sobbing on his shoulder. He wrapped his arms tighter around her, relaxing now he knew it was OK for him to do so.
He blushed happily, despite the fact that he was sad that Colette was unhappy and crying he felt amazingly happy that she was letting him hold her. It felt so right to do so, like she was made to fit in his arms. He began to rub her back gently and made soft, soothing noises. He felt so good, holding her and comforting her. He was cross that he couldn't solve the problem, that he couldn't just take her away from all this to somewhere she felt safe and wasn't plagued by all the difficulties, challenges and hardships that had become routine, everyday occurrences. But he knew that she felt the same way as he did about their quest, that it wasn't just about them, or their little group, but about the whole two worlds. She wanted to finish what they'd started, just like he did.
But still, he wanted for her to be alright, to never feel sad and hoped that she would let him do his best to always make sure that she was happy, which would in turn make him happy.
Her sobs slowed, and she began nuzzling him. He felt all warm and fuzzy inside at the feeling of her cheek rubbing against his shoulder and chest, it was a new, wonderful feeling. Tentatively he began to nuzzle the top of her head, and he smiled when she didn't complain or move away from his touch.
Eventually she stopped, and moved her head so she could look up at him, her eyes filled with so many emotions he found it difficult to read them all, but what he saw and recognised pleased him.
"A bit better now?" he asked quietly and she nodded. He took the corner of the blanket and gently brushed it against her cheeks, wiping away the traces of her tears. She moved into the touch of the soft fabric against her skin, closing her eyes happily. He moved to hug her again, and she hugged him back, content in his arms. He smiled, not wanting to let her go, it felt so perfect to be like this with her, to hold her close to him.
All too soon, however, the thought struck him that the others might get worried about them if they didn't return to the camp soon. He expressed this thought to the little angel and she nodded, reluctantly moving out of his arms and standing up with him. They walked back to camp together side-by-side, her hand finding his and grasping it tightly. He smiled and blushed, and decided that no matter what challenge presented itself to them, no matter how many monsters tried to attack them, he wouldn't let anything beat them. He'd let nothing ruin the feeling of absolute perfect, utter happiness he felt being with her right now and that, he hoped and, somehow, knew he would always feel.