Sorry this is a little late! I know Christmas is over but I found this started on my computer and wanted to finish it without waiting another year. So here you go! Stranger Things Have Happened is being brainstormed and I should start on it reasonably soon. I have like 4 more songfics I want to do also, so whichever inspiration strikes me to do is what I'll do next. Review for me, and I hope everyone had a great Christmas!
I own nothing. All characters belong to their respective copyrights. If you know where the two other characters named come from, gold star for the day!
The six weary travelers stepped off the airship and onto dock 4 of the Luca stadium. They had just flown in from Besaid, which was normally a relatively short flight, but the snow had made landing difficult and Cid didn't want to ding up his airship. That's right, it was snowing in Luca. People were excited since this was the first snow Luca had seen in as long as anyone could remember. Christmas time was drawing close and the season was definitely in the air. Luca was decorated with greens and reds, streamers and lights, and Christmas trees.
Sin had been defeated about a month ago, but it had only taken about a week for Tidus to find his way back to Yuna. He had been allowed to return seeing as he did kind of help save the world. Much to everyone's (especially Rikku's) surprise, he had brought someone with him - Auron, who was looking much younger than when they had last seen him. Auron's life had been restored to just before Yunalesca's fatal strike ended his life; as a result, he was younger, both his eyes were fully functional and he seemed to have regained some of his youthful joy. Not that he was ever as crazy as Rikku. Or that he had exactly been joyous on his last pilgrimage with Braska. Although no one save the two involved knew it, Rikku and Auron had fallen for each other despite the difficult circumstances of the pilgrimage.
"So, what are we gonna do?" Yuna asked as everyone moved from the stadium and into the city.
"Party!" Rikku exclaimed.
"Gracious no!" Auron said forcefully. "Last time you took me to one of your 'parties', I spent 3 hours in a club full of sweaty teens while you danced your brains out. Some drunk kid threw up on my coat!"
"Fine," Rikku said, pouting a little bit. "How about we go shopping then? Or at least window-shopping or something. I haven't gotten your gift yet Auron!" At this Auron, much to everyone's amusement, turned slightly red and began scratching the back of his head. It made him look a little like Tidus during his dumber moments.
"How 'bout we split up for a while, ya? We can get gifts and meet later at the café for dinner. I still need to get Lu's gift anyways." Everyone agreed with Wakka and the friends went their separate ways for the afternoon.
Tidus stood high up above the city, looking down on its beauty. From his vantage point near the Highroad, all of Luca spread out before him, veiled in the slowly falling snow. His present was in the works; he simply had to wait for it. Turning to cast an impatient glance down the highroad, he saw two young kids playing in the snow. They were probably around twelve years old and seemed to be having a good time. The silver haired boy was staring off into the distance, perhaps lost in thought. The girl snuck up behind him, aimed, and threw a snowball at him, hitting her mark perfectly. The boy pitched forward into a snowdrift, making the girl laugh hear head off.
"Presea! What was that for? Ohhh, I'm so gonna get you for that!" The pink haired girl giggled again. "Just you try Genis! You won't catch me!" She took off down the stairs and back into the city, the boy Genis hot on her tail.
"Ahh, young love…" Tidus said to himself, chuckling a bit. I wonder if Yuna and I would have been like that when we were that age… His musings were interrupted though as a young woman on Chocobo rode down the path. Tidus waved a greeting as she dismounted.
"I was beginning to wonder if you were gonna make it Lucil," he said jokingly. "Good thing you were only a half hour late."
"Shut up! Snow makes it hard to ride, you know," she shot back. "Besides, I got what you were looking for. I'm sure Lady Yuna will love it. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to get going. If I don't get my Chocobo back to the stable he'll catch a cold."
"Alright then. Thanks again Lucil!" Tidus yelled as she rode off. "Now to get this present finished off," he said to himself, looking at the small package in his hands. "I just hope she'll like it…"
Yuna walked from shop to shop, looking desperately for something to get her boyfriend. After about on hour of looking, she realized something.
"I've known him since he showed up in Spira but I still have no idea what to get him!" she said out loud. Pulling her coat tighter around herself in an effort to shut out the cold, she decided to try one more store. She smiled to herself as she saw a shop named "Blitzball Nostalgia." At least I know he likes Blitzball, Yuna smiled to herself. Walking over to the window, she looked at the display items before she saw something that really caught her eye. Gasping a little, she rushed into the store to grab the gift before anyone else could.
Wakka sat in a small coffee shop sipping his drink and smiling to himself. It was nice to have some down time, he thought to himself. He had the perfect gift for Lulu. It wasn't something that would make her melt, but nothing would do that anyways, he thought with a wry smile. However, it was something she would truly appreciate. Wakka only hoped she'd be able to accept it…
Lulu was at a loss for what to get Wakka. She wanted something nice, but personal. Something original and meaningful, not a stereotypical gift. But she had no clue what that would be. Stopping and thinking for a moment, Lulu realized something deep wouldn't be necessary. Wakka, as much as she loved him, wasn't usually a deep person. She knew something that would make him happy. "That's what's important after all. Something that he'll like, even if it isn't all that deep," she said quietly to herself. Turning, she made her way towards the stadium.
Rikku rushed around the city, looking in every store. She loved Luca; there was so much life and action! Rikku smiled at the cute stuffed animals in one store, but realized Auron would be uncomfortable receiving one of those. She thought about getting him a weapon or something practical, but cancelled that thought fast. Auron had more swords than any ten people put together, and even without them he was a walking weapon unarmed. Another sword would hardly be practical. Passing one of her favorite stores in the city, her eyes lit up as she remembered an amazing secret conversation she'd had with Auron during the night in Macalania. Grinning at her genius, she charged inside.
Auron sighed to himself. He was no good with girls. He had never been that close to anyone before. He didn't know what to get Rikku. He felt like hitting something, but remembered his own advice – "Guard your emotions, then guard your Summoner." Summoner or no, he still needed to think things through and keep his emotions in check if he wanted to get Rikku something nice.
"Let's think. What kind of person is Rikku? Fun, charming, happy, energetic…" Auron's eyes lit up. "I couldn't," he continued saying to himself. "I don't have the money. Hmmm, think think think… If I were to… yes, and then I could… okay. But would she like it? No… She'll love it!" A genuine (and large) smile graced Auron's face, once of the few over the past ten years. He walked out of the store he was in and headed off to take care of things.
Dinner at the café was a happy event. Everyone had stuff to say about their day, and taunts to the people who would soon be receiving their gifts. After desert (which only Rikku partook in) everyone headed back to the hotel they had decided to stay at for the night. Two rooms had been purchased, but due to the couples' desires to be alone for their gift exchanges an extra room was bought. Even though it wasn't very late, everyone adjourned to their rooms for some quality time.
Tidus had gotten his gift finished just before dinner and was anxious. Yuna was smiling a very cute smile at him.
"What?" he asked.
"You look so funny when you're nervous. Afraid I won't like your gift or something?" she said giggling. She flopped down on the bed in her pajamas. Tidus had changed into gym shorts and a white shirt that he usually wore before bed.
"Can I open mine first?" Tidus asked. "I want to see what you got me!"
"Can't I open mine first?"
"Hey!" Yuna said as she whacked Tidus with a pillow. Several minutes later both fighters fell down on the bed exhausted from their pillow match.
"I won," Tidus said between gasps for air, "so I open first!"
"Fine, but its only because I'm soooo nice," Yuna replied as she handed Tidus his box. Tidus tore the paper to find a box from Blitzball Nostalgia. Looking quizzically at Yuna, he slid the box open to find… a Blitzball.
"Well, you sure know me, Yuna…" he said with a little disappointment.
"No you goof, look on the other side!" she said laughing. Turning it over, Tidus couldn't help but shed a few tears at what he saw.
"Reach for the stars, kid.
"I knew you'd appreciate it." Yuna said quietly.
"I love it Yuna. I love it." he replied, throwing his arms around her. After pulling back, he told her about his gift.
"You have to close your eyes for mine!"
"Well… okay!" Yuna shut her eyes and waited.
"Okay, you can look now." Opening her eyes, she sawTidus kneeling down on the floor, a ring held out to her. A beautiful crystal from Macalania Woods was set in its center.
It was Yuna's turn to cry.
Wakka and Lulu sat watching TV for a while, wrapped up in each other's arms. A triple-A league Blitzball game was on and Wakka was really enjoying it. Lulu was moderately interested as well. Something she'd never tell anyone aside from Wakka – she actually enjoyed Blitzball a lot. While the game was on as a distraction she pulled out a certificate and placed it in Wakka's hands. He looked at it, did a double take, then cried out loud.
"A lifetime subscription to "Pro Blitzball Monthly"! Lu, how did you get this?!"
"It didn't take much. I had to pull some strings, but they knew who you were. They wouldn't refuse a Guardian such a wonderful gift."
Wakka hugged her in thanks, then turned very serious.
"Here's your gift. It's not something you'll 'like', but I hope you'll get the point of it, ya?" It was a sphere, containing an image of someone very close to both of them.
Hey Lu, how you doin'? I'm gonna be on duty soon so I gotta make this fast. Lu, war is hell. I didn't know it goin' in, but there's no turnin' back now, ya know? Lulu, if something happens to me, please find the strength to move on. I'll always love you no matter what. You know what else I love though? Your smile. Don't lose that smile, okay? If I don't come home, I just want you to know I'll still be looking after you. Yevon be with you Lu.
Lulu was crying openly by the end. Wakka was kicking himself too.
"Damn, I'm sorry Lu. I didn't want to make you cry…" He stood up to leave, but Lulu grabbed him and spun him around and into a hug.
"Thank you so much Wakka. Thank you so much."
Rikku cut straight to the chase upon entering their room. "Auron, remember that one part of our conversation in Macalania?"
"I remember the whole thing. How could I forget?"
"Well…" she said, dragging the word out, "part of our talk made me think of something…"
"Auron, what do you miss most about life before becoming a Guardian?"
"Nothing. Temple life was no fun. Being a monk was challenging."
"Okay, then what about before you were a monk?"
"I remember little before then. I was given into the care of the temple at a very young age."
"Think! Come on, I want to know more about you!"
"… My dog."
"You had a dog?"
"As a little boy, yes. He was a good companion. I was very sad when I had to leave him behind."
Before Auron could ask his question, a small squeal could be heard from the big box Rikku had wrapped. Speechless, he walked over to the box. Tearing open the wrapping, he pulled a tiny golden retriever puppy out. It whined just a little and started thrashing in his arms in an attempt to lick his face. Auron still hadn't found his voice.
"So, what do you think?"
"… I love him! Rikku, thank you!"
Rikku laughed, partly out of relief. She was a little afraid he wouldn't want a puppy. "What are you gonna call him?"
Auron thought for a minute. "I'll name him Roger. It was the name of my old dog."
"Yay! Roger it is then!"
Auron set Roger down on the bed. Turning to Rikku, he pulled her into a hug. "Rikku, I love you so much." Rikku froze. It was the first time he had said that to her. "I love you too," she said, surprised at how natural it sounded. And happy at how true it was.
"Here's my present," Auron said, pulling away and handing her a package. Tearing it open, Rikku found… a coat. She looked at him confusedly.
"Well, Luca can get cold in the winter," he said cryptically.
"Auron, we go back to Besaid in a few days. It's always warm there."
"Look in the pocket, goof." After digging through nearly every pocket, Rikku found a brochure showing a huge high-rise building. After leafing through it, she stiffened, then slowly brought her wide-eyed gaze up to meet Auron's.
"I know how much you love Luca. I had to sell some things, and pull some funds out of Bevelle from my old temple account, but that's where we'll be able to live when it's finished. Together. Provided you want to, of course…"
Rikku tackled Auron, sobbing uncontrollably. Auron held her while she babbled about how happy she was and how much she loved him, smiling to himself the whole time. It had taken some work (and some money), but it had been worth it. Rikku suddenly pulled back and look at him.
"But what about the others? We won't be with them anymore, will we?" Auron smiled at her.
"I managed to get some other rooms held. We'll talk to the others tomorrow. Maybe they'll be willing to be our neighbors?" Rikku broke down again, and Auron just kept smiling, happy that he'd been given a second chance at life.
And so ended a wonderful, fulfilling, and incredibly happy Christmas for the saviors of Spira. Merry (late!) Christmas to everyone!
Total pointlessness, but I don't care. It was fun to write. Hope you guys liked it. Review! (Copy and paste x100) Hope the holiday season was great for everyone. Now let's get some warmer weather! See ya'll later!