"Bliss" time-line one-shot, set some time between chapters one and two. Lloyd and Colette fluff set at Zelos and Sheena's place on Mizuho New Years Eve. I was in a good mood and wanted to share the warm fuzzies so I wrote a stupidly soppy fluffy bunch of fluffy-fluff. You have been warned :)
Dedication: to my 'Lloyd', for being wonderful to me and being such an amazing person. Supportive, loving and a fantastic companion. I love you :)
Thank you also to the great people, creatures and chibis in my life who have kept me in a good mood and brought many smiles to my face.
Disclaimer: I don't own Tales of Symphonia. I'm obsessed with it, I think it's absolutely fantastic and am glad to have been given the chance to play it which lead to me being able to write fanfics about it, something I enjoy very much. However they're FANfics, I'm a fan, I don't own it. Namco own it I believe.
Lloyd smiled as he spotted the back of a familiar person in the opening doorway. He caught Colette's voice as she asked if Sheena wanted anything then greeted the angel warmly as she walked into the kitchen.
She grinned and playfully tickled his nose with the feather on the end of a noise-maker she'd acquired at some point during the party.
"Wondered where you'd got to," she spoke softly in a warm voice, stowing the noise-maker in the sash wrapped around the Mizuho style garment she was wearing. A present from Sheena, it was soft purple with the outline of a rabbit picked out in gold thread leaping over a silver thread moon on the back.
"Having a nice time?" he asked, receiving a happy, positive noise and a nod in reply.
He'd spent most of the Mizuho new years party chatting to Zelos and a couple of teenagers from the village who were too old to sit with the kiddie crowd but not quite yet welcome in the adult circle either. As he himself and Zelos were still outsiders to a certain extent they'd somehow formed a group of their own.
He didn't feel unwelcome, it was just that he and Colette had visited the village enough times that they'd stopped becoming a novelty and he didn't seem to fit into conversations about village life.
Colette had been a little more active that evening. She'd somehow been adopted into the group of children where she'd sat playing games, telling stories and listening to the radio, persuading Sheena to join in with some karaoke at one point. Then, when the younger party-goers had been put into the guestroom to nap the blonde had spent more time with the summoner who was hosting the party, occasionally disappearing to sneak drinks and snacks to the children who she knew wouldn't be able to sleep on such an exciting night.
"I was going to come and find you, it's getting close to midnight. You want a drink?" he offered.
"Mmm, please, whatever you're having," she replied.
"So, something disgustingly alcoholic that'll knock you straight out it's so strong?" he said, his tone of voice deadpan, before chuckling and pouring out two glasses of something fizzy, full of sugar and non-alcoholic while she giggled.
"I love you," she smiled at him, wrapping her arms around him in a warm embrace.
"Love you too," he smiled back at her, kissing the top of her head lightly.
"Thank you," she sighed softly, nuzzling her cheek against his.
"What for?" he asked quietly, beginning to play with her long, soft, golden mane of hair.
"Just, well, I'm happy, and I love you, and you make me happy. Thank you," she whispered softly.
"Thank you for all you've done for me," he murmured into her hair, his chin resting on the top of her head.
"Me? What have I done?" she asked quietly.
"Lots," he smiled, tweaking her nose. "You've been so wonderful, given me support, a reason to keep going, keep trying, to never give up. You've given me your heart, which is so precious to me. And you make me feel, well, I can't describe it really. I'm, happy, although the word doesn't seem strong enough for what I'm trying to say."
He chuckled at his lack of vocabulary and eloquence, scratching the back of his head with one hand in an embarrassed gesture as she smiled at him. Smiled with her whole body. Mouth, eyes, body language. All of her being spoke of the way she felt.
Grinning he held onto her tightly and spun her around in his arms, making her giggle with delight.
"I'm so lucky you know," she purred when he stopped twirling her to hold her close to him once more. He prompted her to elaborate with a short, soft, curious noise.
"Well, I've got you," she smiled, pointing at his chest. "I've got wonderful friends, a safe, warm place to live and I feel like the world's an OK place to be in. I'm happy."
He smiled at her use of the word he'd chosen earlier and was about to speak when a roar of noise erupted from the other room. Something in the Mizuho language, words he recognised as numbers. It was the countdown of the final seconds to midnight. Instead of speaking he simply held her tighter, cheering out the numbers, one of the few Mizuho language things he'd learnt, with her. Then he followed the last number with a soft, gentle murmur.
"Happy new year my Colette," he whispered in her ear. Then he kissed her. A loving, passionate kiss but tender and gentle. One that conveyed deep feelings and emotions, that lasted for a long time.
Slowly their lips parted and their eyes opened, gazing into each others and saying so much without having to let even a single word float on a breath.
She sighed softly.
"I supposed we'd better get back to the party, they'll be wondering where we are," she said quietly, reluctantly moving away from him to the kitchen door, holding it open for him as he followed with their drinks.
"Now, where's Sheena got to?" she grinned playfully, scanning the room for her intended new years glomp target. It didn't take her long to find the summoner and pounce on her in an enthusiastic hug.
After a while the party died down and people slowly drifted off, parents with sleepy children in tow, until it was just Sheena, Zelos, Lloyd and Colette left.
"Tonight was fun," the blonde beamed, playfully attacking the dark haired woman with the noise-maker.
"Come here, you look silly with that hat on," Sheena laughed as she removed the party hat that had been placed on the angel's head while she'd been wandering around wishing everyone a happy new year.
"You're just jealous 'coz you want one. Here," Colette laughed as she took the hat from Sheena and placed it on the older woman's head. "What do you think Zelos?"
"Very nice, very sexy," the red head laughed as the summoner playfully threw the hat at him.
"Well, we'd better get going to the shrine. Can't have the future chief of Mizuho not turn up there in the first hours of the new year now can we?" Sheena yawned and stretched.
"You guys want to come with us now or are you going to stay here and go when we visit again tomorrow?" Zelos turned to Lloyd and Colette.
"Actually, I fancy a walk if you don't mind," the blonde turned to her husband who smiled, indicating that it sounded fine to him.
Shoes and coats were grabbed then the couples went their separate ways.
On her way back home Sheena spotted something that made her pause and smile. She gestured to Zelos, indicating for him to be quiet before pointing to a spot beside the lake.
"They didn't walk very far then," he smiled as he spotted Colette and Lloyd sitting by the lake, snuggled together, gently illuminated by the bright moon and stars, the light from them strong in the clear night sky.
"Shall we go and see if they want to walk home with us?" he asked his wife.
"No, they look so peaceful. They'll come back when they're ready," Sheena smiled softly as she resumed walking tiredly but contentedly back home.
By the lake Lloyd had taken Colette's hand in his own, tracing a finger over it gently as he admired the delicateness of it compared to the roughness of his own. Lazily he traced letters to form a message on her palm.
"I love you always too," she giggled softly before moving to gently, tenderly and lovingly kiss him.
When they broke the kiss she nuzzled him before sighing quietly and asking, as it was now very late, did he think they ought to go back now.
He did, and moved to get to his feet but paused when he caught her thoughtful expression.
"Everything OK?" he asked softly.
"Mmm, just pondering. You looked like you were going to say something earlier, just before the countdown started. I was wondering what it was," she answered, smiling warmly.
"Just that I'm glad you're happy and that I love you very much. I always want to be with you, for you to always be happy and I'd do anything for you," he murmured, blushing slightly. She grinned and wrapped her arms tightly around him.
"I love you so much!" she whispered loudly in his ear, adding more quietly "and I'd do anything for you too."
He sat, smiling, enjoying the hug, the feeling of the woman he loved safely wrapped in his arms and the peace and quiet of the night. Then quietly, shyly, he spoke again, blushing more deeply than before.
"Maybe one day, some day, I can do something really special for you, give you something very precious," he murmured into her ear, his face warm as his cheeks blushed brightly at the thought of that possibility.
"Lloyd, I, I'd like that, to give you that. It'd be an honour, when the time's right, to…" her voice trailed off. She didn't need to speak any more. He knew what she was offering just as she'd understood what he'd meant.
She sighed contentedly, thinking of the possibilities the future might hold, what new roles she might have in it. Then she placed a feather-light, tender kiss on his cheek and, her hand wrapped tightly in his, got up with him to walk back to the safety and warmth of their friends' house.