December 8th, 2004

Heaven's not enough…

If when I'm there I don't remember you

Finding the others had been relatively easy. They'd all managed to gravitate towards each other, slipping back into their roles as if nothing had been amiss. If they had sensed anything out of the ordinary, none of them showed any signs of it.

He, however, had.

She wasn't there.

He couldn't understand it at first, couldn't fathom how he had gone so long without noticing the absence of her presence. After all, she had been there with him, right by his side when they finally embraced the end…

Why wasn't she with him now? Where could she have gone?

It had been Tsume who had suggested that perhaps she wasn't there at all; that because she wasn't truly a wolf Paradise had barred her from its gates. He'd denied his words vehemently of course, but the seeds of doubt had already been planted.

Then Toboe, young and naïve though he was striving always to be the voice of reason, brought to him new hope. So she hadn't been a true wolf? So what? They had all agreed to go to Paradise together, hadn't they? That made her a part of their pack. Pack members looked out for each other.

After all, hadn't they all agreed to meet again in Paradise?

So he resolved then to find her. Search throughout Paradise far and wide until he found her…

Or die trying.

He'd searched and searched. Traveling across the vast expanse of Paradise, through the maze-like cities until reaching the seemingly endless roads and fields that seemed to span as far as the eye can see. He'd searched, and searched, and searched.

She wasn't here.

Despite all his searching, throughout the seas of faces, none of them were hers. Perhaps Tsume had been right all along; they had all promised to reunite, but maybe she had not included herself in that agreement. Maybe she hadn't been able to. Maybe she hadn't wanted to.

Prepared to throw in the towel, his sights came upon an old farmhouse that had seemingly popped up at the end of the road. An odd feeling rose up in his chest and he felt himself being drawn towards it. Something, someone was here; they were calling to him. Before long he was sprinting towards it as fast as his legs could carry him.

Upon first sight, there was nothing that impressive about the property. An old barn overlooked a large field, and in the foreground a small brown house sat in the shade of a large oak tree. It was old, but well kept; the house itself was enclosed within a low fence, white flowers intermingling through the wooden planks.

He found his gaze going beyond the flowers, though deep down he felt a stirring sense of familiarity about them, across the small yard to the small porch attached to the house. Next to the door sat an old rocking chair and cloth-covered table on which sat a small vase with another of the white flowers.

Letting out a sharp breath, a pair of eyes opened to meet his.

The color was the same as before, sharp and alert, deep like waters of the ocean. However, shiny black fur had been dulled by age, lacking its luster. The sleek curves and strong muscles had also withered with time, leaving her form small and hunched.

She was old… very old.

He smiled. She was old, but she was here… and she'd waited for him. To him that was all that mattered. He took a step forward and her ears twitched with the action. She moved to push herself up, letting out a small whimper at the movement.

"No, no, wait… it's okay…" He quickly closed the distance between them, sitting down on the step beneath her as he eased her back into a more comfortable position. "You're in a lot of pain, huh?" She licked his hand gently, nuzzling his arm with her nose. He let out a shaky laugh, stroking her fur with his fingers. He remembered she'd commented on how nice it felt before she…

He let out a shaky breath, willing his eyes not to tear up. "You've been waiting here all this time, haven't you? For me…?" She lay her head down on the step tiredly, her blue eyes never leaving his face. However, a few moments passed and she let out another soft whimper and closed her eyes. "I didn't know that you'd… I didn't think you were here…" He clenched his eyes shut, resting his head against her fur. "I'm sorry… I didn't mean to make you wait so long!"

"It's okay… I forgive you."

His eyes snapped open. Sitting up, he turned his head to the voice coming from behind. Once again, blue eyes met his.

A woman dressed in denim coveralls stood at the fence gate, smirking up at him. Wild black hair framed her tanned face, contrasted by the fuchsia scarf she wore around her neck.

"Blue…?"

She grinned. "You're… Before he had time to think she was rushing towards him, a joyous expression on her face.

"Hige!"

Déjà vu. He met her halfway, barely believing the arms wrapping themselves around his neck in a tight hug. "You're… but I…" He glanced back the dog, which had risen from her spot on the porch to retreat back into the house where there was more shade.

"Dummy…" She was crying, nuzzling her face into his shirt. "How could you mistake me for the dog?"

He laughed. "She did bare a striking resemblance… you gotta admit."

She punched him in the ribs playfully. "First of all, she is a he," At that he made a face. "And second of all, I asked him to keep a lookout for you."

"You knew I was coming?"

She looked up at him. "We promised to stick together, didn't we?" At his solemn nod she smirked. "Although… you were taking so long I thought I was gonna have to come and hunt you down."

Hige laughed. "Not that I'd mind…" He smirked at her. "Usually I'm the one doin' the chasin'…"

Blue gave him a playful grin. "I'm sure we can fix that." At that, she pounced on him.

If I could cry

If I could live these truths I did then take me there…

Heaven goodbye…

End