A/N: Okay, I realize that if any of my RotH or SAMS fans are reading this, or noticing I posted a story, they're mentally stabbing me for not updating. And to them, I say this: I am working on the next two chapters for both stories, but with Band camp coming on Sunday, I am pressed for time, and time is crucial when trying to "compete", if you will, with that creative muscle. So, I opt for exercising and training it with a one shot my mind has been toying with for a while.


Disclaimer: I have dreams, and they include owning the Tales series; however, that will never happen. In other words, this is purely for entertainment purposes and not used for the gain of money through characters that I do not own.

That said, let the games begin!

Kratos was certain he was prepared for nearly anything, after all, the Seraphim was around four thousand forty-seven years old (he did have to admit it was a very crude estimation, since he had long since lost count of the years that droned on), and had lived through losing the woman he loved and his son in the same moment. Not only that, but it was his sword that had struck down the woman of his life, it was her blood on his hands. And now, he was working side by side with the men who had initiated the events that ultimately killed the woman he loved. Yes, Kratos was pretty damn certain he was prepared for anything.

However, that certainty was completely struck down the moment he met—no, found him: Lloyd, his beloved son. Kratos' flesh and blood, the manifestation of the love he and Anna had for each other. The moment that Lloyd reentered his life, everything was turned upside down. Kratos wanted nothing more than to once again defy the orders of Mithos, and hold the son he thought he had lost years ago. However, duty and priority ruled Kratos' life, the last time he had defied Mithos, he lost the ones he loved.

At first, Kratos' intentions were to keep Lloyd as far away from the Chosen as possible, keep him safe from the gruesome truth that would most likely destroy him on the inside. He should've known better. It was obvious to him when Lloyd was a child that he had Anna's fighting spirit, and with that spirit came her downright stubbornness. Kratos should've known that Lloyd would've never listened to him just because he said no, Kratos was nothing to the boy. Lloyd was raised by a dwarf, not knowing who his real father was. And even if Lloyd had grown up under Kratos' care, he wouldn't have listened, just as Anna hadn't listened when Kratos had demanded that she stopped following him around. So now, just as Anna had followed him around, burrowing herself into his heart, Lloyd was behind him, step by step, ignoring every warning he gave.

He tried to stop himself, but he couldn't help it, he was slowly getting closer and closer to Lloyd, getting to know the son who had grown up without him. Kratos knew that he was only making it harder, and since Lloyd became apart of his life again, every moment became an internal battle. He was trying to keep Lloyd safe, he couldn't bear to loose his son again, but how could he stand to betray him? Kratos never wanted to see a look of betrayal on the teen's face, especially directed at him.

Kratos parried yet another attack by the dragon rider, holding back as much as he could so as not to attract any attention to his inexplicable power. Out of the corner of his eye, he watched as his son wildly lashed out at the rider's dragon. Lloyd had a fighting style very similar to Anna's, lash out nonstop, think about repercussions later. The sight both warmed his heart in the memory, and weighed upon his shoulders in worry. Though, Kratos was hardly the one to show any emotion besides apathy.

The rider growled in anger at Kratos' obvious lack of concentration on their fight, and the fact that the man was still beating him. In a last ditch effort to gain the upper hand, he threw his entire body into his next thrust, successfully regaining the so called mercenary's full attention.

"Kratos! Watch out!" a brown haired teen shouted as he was hurtled towards the older man's back.

Kratos dodged out of instinctive reflex and watched as Lloyd collided with the man he had been fighting with merely seconds ago. There was a hideous ripping sound as the unsuspecting rider's sword was unintentionally thrust into Lloyd's side, creating a large cut just above his right hip. It was all Kratos could do to prevent himself from discarding the pathetic man's life at that very moment; however, the wound hardly stopped Lloyd as he struggled to get up and rushed back at the dragon.

It was almost a fantastic site, Lloyd fighting that dragon; Kratos almost lost himself in the affray and nearly missed the retreat of the rider. He choose to ignore it, it was better for both of them that Kratos didn't go after him. He could hear Raine chanting an incantation to heal Lloyd and he prepared a healing technique for that purpose, himself.

"Raising Falcon!" Lloyd jumped in the air, his sword poised and ready to attack the wyrm. Kratos watched in masked awe as blood spurted from his son's side and fell to the earth in a crimson rain as he descended with great force upon his foe. Kratos couldn't help but feel a little pride as Lloyd struck the dragon dead on, defeating it. However, Kratos' pride was replaced with another, painfully familiar feeling when he realized that the dragon wasn't the only one that was defeated. Lloyd collapsed on the ground right next to the over sized lizard, blood spilling from his wound. Kratos approached him, hoping to witness the boy jump back on his feet.

"I'm sorry…" Lloyd murmured, causing Kratos to stop in surprise, "Dad."

Kratos stared at the boy in disbelief as he watched his own eyes—no, Lloyd's eyes—close. Had Lloyd remembered him? If he had, why hadn't he said anything? Was this his way of telling him? Or was it a subconscious remembrance? When the elven professor bent down next to Lloyd, his comment not affecting her at all, Kratos realized the horrible truth. Lloyd hadn't been talking about him at all; he was referring to the dwarf, Dirk, who had raised him.

That was when Kratos realized, no extent of time, no heart breaking, life ruining moment, and no amount of supernatural powers could ever prepare him to hear his son call another man 'Dad'. Kratos was certain that he was prepared for anything. Now, he knew better.

A/N: Alright, tell me what you think. And to clarify, Lloyd didn't die, he was knocked out. It's just, ever since I found out Kratos was Lloyd's dad, I wanted to delve into Kratos' feelings when he heard Lloyd say "I'm sorry, Dad", when he was KO'd. So, this is the result. Like it?