Chapter One

If only it were all that simple. It began to all just blur for me as I took the plunge into this shield of dust that seemed to be my way back. I came soon to realise that I had left my home, my new surroundings, just to return back to the dump that my father destroyed. Maybe that was a stupid thing for me to do, but I was fading away. There wasn't really a choice for me at that time. I'm just floating here, without anything, back where I started. I've passed these ruins so many times just by drifting, it's amazing that I'm even alive. These waters, that once raged at the sign of Sin's appearance, now stand calm, keeping me afloat as I lay on these waves. I've left everything behind and now I can't get back. I'm not even sure if I'm in the same time as I used to. Maybe I jumped another thousand years, or maybe I'm back in my time. But this is Spira. This isn't the Zanarkand I remember. Maybe it never existed anyway. I jumped into the sky for no reason. I couldn't even say goodbye correctly.

Worst of all, I only can hold onto these memories. I can't make new ones. Besaid, Kilika, Luca, Guadosalam, Macalania... they're all only memories to me. The woods are dying and I promised that I would do anything to save them. Ha, if that weren't only a joke. Those beautiful beasts, the aeons, they're all gone now. They're dust. And I jumped into it as I began to fade. Maybe I should have just stayed there and took the gift, but no, I was selfish. I wanted to go home.

Rikku's face always made me smile. Her eyes made her look as if she always had something crazy running through her mind. And though he hated the Al Bhed, he still liked Rikku and Yuna. He seriously didn't know that Rikku was an Al Bhed, and when he found out that Yuna and Rikku were cousins, his mind swayed, only because Yuna, who he had sworn to protect as everyone else, was simply a gem. He was the first person I met when I came to after being hit by Sin for the second time. What my luck. First he sends me to a different time, then he sends me to some paradise island. He owed me that one. Ha. I still call him Sin. Why, Jecht, old man, you did all of this just so I can make myself feel like a hero. Well, dad, you see where I am now, right? I'm just drifting and all of this is because of you. I'm just glad that I'm not that little cry baby you once knew. You changed me. I don't regret jumping into that dust. I only regret not saying bye to him. It's just like that day where I met him, floating in the waters out of Besaid. If only I could go back.

Blinded, Tidus wandered in these clear waters, grinning slightly. It was the calm after the storm. He woke up from his slumber from a Blitzball, which seemed to attack him directly in the forehead.

"Hey, man. Can you toss that back here, ya?" A tanned islander waved his arm with his bright smile, aiming his eyesight toward Tidus, who seemed to still be in shock.

"Sure thing!" Tidus swam back, eying the ball. As he dove underwater, he began to push himself down, as far as possible. Completely without any signs of warning, he spiraled out from the water, the ball being knocked into the sky. Tidus floated in midair for just a moment as he spun, knocking the ball far past Wakka's reach. The entire group of Islanders fell to the ground in attempt to catch the ball, but all failed. Wakka's blank, surprised expression changed into a wicked grin.

"Man, we could sure use a Blitzer like you." He forced his arms together as he leaned backward, casually.

Tidus swam toward the shore, getting a hand from Wakka to stand. Leaning onto Wakka for support, Tidus looked at everyone, noticing something strange.

"Ya," Wakka questioned, "you haven't ever been a Blitzer before, have you?"

"Are you kidding me?" Tidus seemed to sound annoyed, but the smile on his face showed otherwise, "I was the leader of the Zanarkand Abes!"

Not a single person showed any emotion other than confusion. "Zanarkand, ya? You must be pulling a trick on us!" Wakka nudged Tidus as the other islanders laughed. Though Tidus seemed a little confused himself.

"No, really. The Zanarkand Abes. Well, at least..." Tidus paused. Wakka tilted his head and looked him dead in the eye.

"Listen, bro, Zanarkand's only a field of ruins. It's been so for like almost a thousand years, right guys?" The team all nodded in agreement. "You're a pretty good joker. So, what do you say? You're kick is powerful. We need someone like you on our team to win. What's with you, kid? Are you alright?"

Tidus still didn't believe it. He refused to. His mouth once again opened. "I was just attacked by Sin and the next thing I know is..."

The group of people seemed to be in shock. They quickly raised their arms to their sides and moved them in such a way that it seemed like a prayer. Everyone grew silent once more.

"You've gotten too close to Sin's toxin. Maybe that's why you think Zanarkand still exists. It's a miracle that you're still with us. Praise be to Yevon. Maybe we should get you into town."

I couldn't believe it. My Zanarkand was gone. Ha, I sounded like a fool to everyone. That excuse stuck with me forever after that. Sin's toxin. Like it existed. If my Zanarkand didn't exist, then how would I have been there. It wasn't all an illusion, I can say that much. That prayer they did existed in my time, too. It meant good luck. They seemed to have no confidence in themselves either. I guess I sound like a rambling jerk. All I'm doing is pointing out everything I didn't like about them. That's all you can do when you float alone. You can only think about what went on and reflect upon it, distorting it with your imagination, usually to make yourself look better. I can't remember every detail as the truth, but who's to say. As Auron used to always tell me, it's my story.

I wanted him to take me to town. I wanted him to stay. What came over me at this time. I couldn't stop feeling urged to stay close to him. I remember his bare chest rubbing against me as my chin laid firmly on his shoulder, toned and tanned. I couldn't hold in the smile anymore. My eyes closed and nuzzled him, as if he were a lover. He didn't quite notice. Then again, I could just be imagining all of this. Maybe he was pissed, maybe he liked it. Who knows.

Wakka continued to carry Tidus as he walked from the beach to a forested area, covered in ancient, broken down machina. Tidus recognized them immediately. They appeared to be just like the ones in Zanarkand. He got to his feet and sat down on top of one that was partially submerged in the ground beneath it.

"Hey, I thought you couldn't walk." Wakka crossed his arms and faked a frown toward Tidus.

"Well, you insisted on carrying me. You kinda just grabbed onto me." Tidus spoke, with a fa├žade of innocence.

"Aha, I kinda did now, didn't I? So, you say you come from Zanarkand?" Wakka waited for Tidus to nod. "Ya, it's the toxin."

Wakka picked Tidus back up, carrying him a bit further, knowing that Tidus could perfectly walk on his own. Tidus once again moved from Wakka's arm and began to walk at his side. They looked down into a vast break in the earth filled with water. Wakka smirked.

"C'mon boy. Get in there." He slapped Tidus on the back, forcing him to lose his balance. Falling off of the cliff, he landed with his back against the water.

I caught my eye on something in that new world that I liked. I wanted to stick with him for as long as I could. I only pretended to be weak that day and go with the whole toxin idea just so that man could hold me and help me get back to his town. I thought he was going to leave me once we got there, but I was about to be proved wrong. It was that moment that I realised that I wanted him. It was still way too much to even think about.