AN: It's been a while! I've been writing mostly original fic of late, but I recently replayed Ico and it captured my heart all over again. Soooo I'm doing themes again. The livejournal 24hour themes challenge to be precise. Each drabble must contain both the theme and a reference to the time for each hour. I'll post them mostly in groups of three, so...onward!

Character/Pairing: Ico & Yorda
Category: Friendship
Rating: G
Warnings: None
Disclaimer: Ico belongs to SCEI and Fumito Ueda

oOo

06:00 - Tenacity and perseverance, especially with something you have been putting off

Yorda paces back and forth, staring down at the waves far below, then up to the outstretched hand and smiling, tense face. It seems a long way to jump and such a long way to fall.

And Ico doesn't think she can make it either. Not entirely.

She paces back around again, away from the hole, feeling every rock and blade of grass between her toes. This is the only way forward and she knows she has to do it. She'll jump and she'll make it or he'll catch her. He has before. She looks down at the schism of rock again.

I'll go when there is room for a running jump, she thinks.

She bites her lip and saunters backwards. A breath and she pushes forward, reaching for the sky. The wind tries to push her back. Back and down and down. Her arms stretch out and her hands clutch hard. The hardest thing for survival. Ico grits his teeth in a smile. He crouches, tanned hands pulling pale white. She waves in the breeze like a white flag but Ico continues to pull until Yorda is lying on the wooden bridge.

She gasps for air; she had held her breath.
"Thank you," she says. Ico smiles and looks off to the nearest wall, filled with cracks and ledges. He holds out his hand and says something in his strange, foreign tongue. It's very early; probably about 6 in the morning, and Yorda hopes the day will get a little better.

She takes his hand.

oOo

02:00 - Ridding partnerships or relationships of negativity

Ico wriggles up the chain and swings like trailing vine in the breeze to the higher platform. Yorda bites her lip, dreading. Ico beckons, waving her up the chain. She circles the chain and looks up at him. At the chain, and back at him. She knows she's just not brave enough to manage that. Yorda shakes her head violently, staring at the floor. She's letting him down. Perhaps he'll leave her? Then she'd be worse off than she was in the cage.

Ico lets out a deep breath. Trying to find ways for Yorda to follow him is tiring and he wishes she'd just try. But he knows that is a mean thought – she not only looks frail, she is. Perhaps she's never left the castle before. She's newer to this than even he is. Ico gives her a hopefully reassuring smile and runs to find a box.

She clambers up, hand in hand with her first, only, best friend and knows it's okay.

oOo

01:00 - Focus is on wholeness of self and the banishing of any shadows

It's about an hour past midnight and he wishes he could do more than doze. Yorda breathes softly into his hair like a warm breeze. She glows unnaturally in the gloom and Ico feels he is moth, drawn irresistibly to her light, despite the danger she poses.

Ico flicks his eyes out into the encroaching darkness. Encroaching in more deadly ways than one. There are shadows that fly and shadows that creep up the wall. There are shadows that snatch and swipe. They are real and yet incorporeal as he brandishes his pitiful weapon at them. Ico is just glad that he can hit them at all.

Something moves in the corner of his eye. He sits upright, stick clutched in his hand. The splinters dig into his palm. All he can hear are Yorda's breathing, her dress flapping lightly in the wind and the muffled rattling of a chain across the courtyard. They ring in his ears.

Perhaps it was nothing, after all.

When the day had been darkening and the shadows grew longer and more twisted, a thought had flitted across his mind. Perhaps he was as incorporeal as the shadows, perhaps he had died in that sarcophagus. But the light that was Yorda pushed back the dark and brought sense to the vague mutterings and outlines.

She kept him safely grounded by flying herself.

oOo

I know they seem to be in no logical order, but don't worry. You don't actually need to read them in order. They aren't all part of the same day, though they can be if you like. So many options!

Geez, I hate trying to format things on FFNet. Looking back on this, there seems to be a lot about holding hands. But then, it's a major part of the gameplay, huh? I'm not entirely happy with these, though I'm not sure why. Probably trying to hard is it. I just can't do the game justice. Well, there's another 21 themes to go, so hopefully I'll get better.