Wait for Me

A/N: Contains slight spoilers of Xenosaga II. Oh, and I don't own Xenosaga or any of its characters.

There she was, her small body suspended in mid air. A globe of bright blue and white light entrapped her, keeping her out of my reach. The light illuminated her pink hair and was reflected in the golden pools of her eyes.

Those bright, golden eyes...the same ones that would light up whenever she laughed or when she would smile. The golden eyes that I have come to love were now barren. Expressionless. Empty. Even if they were stripped of the warmth and life that she was so characteristic of, I still loved them nonetheless.

They're so alike...MOMO and Sakura. At least, that was what I thought when I had met her on board the Durandal. Aside from the difference in eye and hair color, they had the same physical build and the same face. Of course, there were more differences as well. Sakura was a tomboy, never afraid to speak her mind. MOMO was shy and timid, but someone who was always worrying about others.

When Sakura died, I never thought that I was going to experience the peace that she had given me. MOMO proved me wrong, though. Realian or not, she made me feel at ease, something that I thought I would never feel again. That was why I was so frightened when I found out that Albedo had kidnapped her. That was why I was so full of rage and hatred when that maniac had tormented her in an attempt to get the Y-DATA buried within her. He had scarred her. And the bastard knows it, too.

I think in the end, I was more frustrated and scared than anything else. I made a promise to Sakura. I remember sitting next to her on the swinging chair on the porch of that house. The sun was setting, and its dying light spread across the grassy fields that surrounded us. Even if all that was an image fabricated together by her subconscious, it was Sakura's world. It was real enough to me.

And so was my promise.

She had asked me to take care of her mom and her younger sister for her. I was so happy, and readily agreed to it. That was the first time that I was entrusted with something that didn't involve a rifle in my hand. Instead of taking a life, a person depended on me to protect one. I told her that I would protect her sister as if she were one of my own.

That was when Sakura kissed me on the cheek. Then, she said good night to me and entered the house, leaving me on the porch unable to speak.

I was such an idiotic kid back then.

I look at her, imprisoned in that globe of shining light. Her unsmiling face looked blankly ahead of her. Although she was physically here, I knew that MOMO was far away from this place. It was like she was in a trance.

I couldn't take her by the shoulders and tell her to snap out of it. If I talked to her, she wouldn't hear me. If I held her hand or touched her cheek, she wouldn't feel it. In her eyes, I am nothing more than Gaignun, Jr. of the Kukai Foundation, pilot of the Durandal. Nothing more.

Nothing more.

I clench my hands into fists, cursing under my breath. We were all there and we couldn't prevent this from happening to her. We were all there, by her side, and we couldn't do a damn thing.

The only one who did anything to make a difference was MOMO herself. Even if it meant risking her own life, she was shutting herself down to prevent the Y-DATA from going into the hands of the enemy. She was willing to die. She was willing to kill herself.

And I wasn't there to stop her. I left the room during her maintenance because I was scared. I didn't watch her because I was a coward.

I still am...a coward...

Her mother said that we could save her if we delved into her subconscious. MOMO was still there somewhere, trapped alone and scared.

She's waiting for me to get her and bring her back.

That's exactly what I'm going to do. I won't be alone, either.

The others formed a circle around her. chaos was worried, I can tell. Despite the fact that the guy is an enigma, he never liked to see any of us in trouble. He got along very well with MOMO, too; he treated her like an older brother would treat his little sister.

The old man was staring at MOMO. Out of all of us, he had known her the longest. He seemed heartless at times, but he was always a big softie when it came to MOMO. He was always at her side, watching her like an overprotective father. And like any father would do for his daughter, he was willing to do anything to save her. That's why he was standing here this very moment.

Shion's here, too. Right now, she was having a few words with Allen about the trip. In a lot of ways, she was the mother figure in MOMO's eyes. Always worried and supportive of her, like a mom should be. Then again, I guess I wouldn't know. I sure as hell never knew what my mother was like, let alone who she even was.

We all cared about MOMO. Every one of us. Not because she possesses some data that people across the galaxy would die to get their hands on. Not because she's a one of a kind prototype Realian.

It's because she's MOMO. It's because she's our friend.

I'm not doing this just because of a promise I made fourteen years ago. I'm doing this because I want her to come back home. I want her eyes to be full of life again. I want her to be here to read my books with me, to take walks with, to laugh at my jokes with...

I just want her here...to be with me. I don't care how selfish it sounds. If I could never hear her voice or see her smile again, I don't know what I would do...

It scares me to think what would happen if she couldn't come back. I guess I'm more of a coward than I think I am.

Shion says that everything's ready now. I nod and place the red visor over my eyes. Everything is painted crimson, and I take one last look at her, wanting nothing more than to see her smile right now.

MOMO...hang in there. I'm coming for you. We all are. Be brave for a little longer.

I'm coming for you. I'm going to bring you back. Please, wait for me.

Wait for me.