((Meowzy: Ne, gomen gomen! I'm so sorry that it took so long! It was just... writersblock to the extreme with this chapter! Sorryyyy! So thanks to everyone who kept insisting that this story be continued!))
My Age's Dawn.
"This is not good. He's losing too much blood!"
"Stop panicking, Zelos! Make yourself useful and hand me the scissors."
"Raine, he's losing consciousness."
"Dammit. Come on, Yuan! Stay with us!"
Yuan's eyes slowly slid closed, voices echoing in the back of his head. Somehow, he wasn't quite sure what they were saying anymore. The entire world was becoming one big blur. He was tired, he was hurting and he couldn't even remember why he was there in the first place. It was something important, but…
It didn't matter anymore. Breathing deeply, he allowed himself to be absorbed by darkness.
Yuan couldn't see… He couldn't hear… Yet… Somehow he had the feeling that he wasn't really gone. He was somewhere dark, that was true. He could feel his limbs growing more and more tired, but… He couldn't help but feel that he wasn't quite dead.
What kind of situation had he gotten himself into now? Perhaps this was a realm of dreams. Or maybe he'd gone to hell. There could also be the possibility that this place was somewhere on the brink of life and death. A void, separating the two.
Just when he was about to give up and let the shadows swallow him, he saw it. A bright light appeared in front of him, growing larger and larger, chasing away the darkness. Slowly, it took the shape of a human being.
Yuan's gasp went completely unheard.
The one before him was none other than Martel. Yet instantly knew it was not the Martel he'd loved so long ago. This was the guardian, the spirit of the great Kharlan tree. A representation of all the souls that had fallen to the Great Seed. The embodiment of mana itself. Martel…
"Yuan Aurion…" she spoke, her voice soft and gentle.
Yuan was completely dumbstruck and unable to respond. He could only watch the one before him.
"You are very fortunate... It seems the world itself begs that your life be spared, that you are given a second chance." The spirit spoke, a serene expression on her face. "Though you have already lived an extended life, it is still too soon for you to be granted your eternal rest."
The world itself wanted his life to be spared? It was too soon for him to die? But… Why?
"I sense your confusion, Yuan Aurion. It is understandable in your situation." Martel commented. "However, you must keep in mind that nothing happens without a reason. The birth of your child was no accident."
Slowly it dawned on Yuan. What had happened, and what he'd promised. He wouldn't die. He couldn't die. He was supposed to live, to be with Kratos and his child… His son.
He set his face in what he was sure was a determined expression. He couldn't give up. Not now.
Martel raised her staff high above her head. It started to shine with great power. "Live, Yuan Aurion. Live…"
"Lord Aurion… You can't go in there!" a trembling maid was trying everything in her power to block the bedroom door.
"Out of my way!" Kratos roared, still holding his wailing child. "I don't care what's going on in there! Yuan needs me!"
"My lord, please calm down." The maid turned even paler, flinching nervously.
"Move!" Kratos growled through gritted teeth.
Normally, he would have simply pushed the girl aside. Now, however, he had to support the newborn cradled in his arms and had no hand to spare. Still, he refused to put the child down and leave him in the care of a maid.
"Move, now." Kratos tried one last time, sending the girl in front of him the darkest look he could muster.
Whimpering under her breath, the maid quickly sidled away from the door. Shifting the weight of the child towards his chest just a little, Kratos managed to grasp the doorknob with his fingers. Within seconds, he had barged into the room.
Raine, Zelos and Kate had all backed away from the bed slightly, staring at Yuan with shocked eyes. Yuan himself was sitting up, his hands held up in front of his face as he gazed at them in wonder. He looked up when he noticed his husband enter the room.
"Kratos…" he whispered.
"Yuan… What's happened?" Kratos asked, noticing that the half-elf seemed to be just fine.
"It was a miracle…" Kate murmured.
"It was amazing." Zelos called loudly. "One second he was dying and the next second he was surrounded by an eerie green light! His wounds were completely healed. Look, there's no scar or anything!"
Raine gave a nimble nod. "It truly was a remarkable sight."
"It was Martel." Yuan smiled lightly.
"Mithos' sister?" Zelos questioned, raising an eyebrow.
"No… The guardian of the tree. She said that it was too soon for me to die. That I was being given a second chance…"
"Yuan…" Kratos stepped forward, sitting down on the bed beside his lover. Yuan glanced down at the crying bundle in his arms.
"Our son." Kratos confirmed with a smile.
"Can I hold him?" Yuan asked.
Kratos nodded, carefully moving the newborn into Yuan's arms. Almost immediately, the child ceased its cries. Both parents smiled at it lovingly and Kratos wrapped his arms around Yuan's shoulders, holding him close.
"Awww… How cute." Zelos cooed.
"What, you're still here?" Yuan stared at him.
Raine chuckled under her breath. "We're going to have to keep the baby under close observation for at least a week. It was born a bit too soon, after all…"
Yuan sighed deeply. He'd been hoping for some peace and quiet.
"Considering the situation, however, it might be best to give both mother and child some rest for now." Raine added.
"Very true." Kate agreed.
They grabbed a reluctant Zelos by the arm and made their way to the door. As they left, Raine said; "Don't let him tire himself out, Kratos."
The door snapped shut, leaving the parents alone with their son. A blissful silence followed.
"I suppose we should visit the tree and thank Martel some time soon." Kratos murmured.
"I suppose so."
Kratos glanced to his side to notice that tears were rolling down Yuan's face. "Why are you crying?" he asked softly.
"Damn moodswings." Yuan replied in a short manner.
Kratos chuckled again and moved his hand to wipe Yuan's cheeks. Then he resorted to gazing at his newborn son once more. The child had apparently fallen asleep.
"He's beautiful." Yuan sighed.
"I know. He looks just like you." Kratos managed a playful smirk.
Yuan chose to ignore that comment completely. "What's his eyecolor?"
"It seems destiny likes to play tricks on us. He's got both our eyecolors." The human responded.
"Two different eyecolors?" Yuan frowned. "Wow… That's different alright. And it leaves us with a dilemma."
Kratos 'hm'-ed absentmindedly. Truthfully, he wouldn't have minded either one of the names they'd decided on.
"Should we come up with something new?" Yuan glanced up at him with a questioning expression.
"No. I already know which name I like best." Kratos spoke.
Yes, even though the child had both eyecolors, it didn't matter. He wanted to go with the name they'd chosen for the occasion of Yuan's emerald green eyes.