A short piece of pre-game angst featuring Colette. Set some time shortly before the game.

SPOILER WARNING: This fic contains spoilers for what's supposed to happen to Colette on her journey.

Disclaimer: I don't own Tales of Symphonia, I'm just an obsessed fan. Namco own it I believe.

Colette felt patronised and insulted. And then she felt angry for feeling that way. Experiencing a range of strong, mixed emotions on a regular basis was, it seemed, an occupational hazard for a Chosen, not that she could ever express any of them to anyone. Just smile and act like everything's OK, that's what they wanted her to do and what she had to do. Never complain, people didn't like it if you did.

It was difficult though, keeping all those powerful emotions bottled up inside herself. Especially at times like this. Once again she was being given a lecture on how to act, how to behave and how to live her life. It wasn't as though she'd get much of one anyways, destined as she was to die before she reached twenty. Couldn't she just have a little time and space every once in a while just to live how she wanted, if only for half an hour or even a quarter of an hour. Five minutes even? No, that was too much to ask for except on rare occasions and even then she still had to keep up some of the Chosen appearances.

But then, she thought, she shouldn't be so selfish as to even think about asking for time for herself. She was the Chosen, someone who had been given a chance to save the world. Being given an honour such as that meant she shouldn't be greedy and ask for anything more.

But she hadn't asked for that even, it was something that had been decided for her before she'd even been able to say her first word, never mind form a whole sentence and have a proper conversation about the matter.

The way she was treated didn't help. She sometimes wondered why people didn't just wrap her up in cotton wool. There were so many things she wasn't allowed to do, so many places she wasn't allowed to go, so many thoughts and feelings she wasn't allowed to express. Sometimes she envied the birds she saw flying through the sky. They didn't have to worry about saving the world and they had so much freedom, being able to fly across the world as they pleased.

She understood why people were so protective of her though, if she died now she couldn't save the world. All the other people in it would suffer. It would be very selfish of her to do something that could endanger the fate of the world just because she wanted a little freedom, to live a little.

Being lectured as she was now made it difficult to think like that however. Her father and grandmother were once again reminding her of her duty, her role, and how she should act. Sometimes she felt so trapped, so restricted. There were so many fun and beautiful things in the world, she wanted to go out and see them, to not be confined to going to the same places and doing the same things week in week out.

But it was because of those things that she needed to do her best to be a good Chosen. If she was successful on her journey those things would continue to exist and others could continue to enjoy them. People like Lloyd, who were kind and thoughtful, deserved to live in a world filled with nice things.

Going on the journey would mean she'd have to leave Lloyd, something she was dreading. She'd become so close to him she wasn't sure how she'd cope without him. Yet if she didn't go on the journey there might not even be a world for him to live in.

So many emotions, so many thoughts. Being a Chosen was so confusing.