Love at First Glance

Fandom: Odin Sphere

Pairing: Oswald x Gwendolyn

Rating: G

Genre: Romance

Summary: What was it about Gwendolyn that made him fall in love with her? What thoughts ran through his head as Oswald bent over Gwendolyn to wake her?

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Of all the people in the world… why her? Why had his heart chosen to give itself to a person whom should have been his enemy? Not that it really mattered at this point, because he had definitely fallen long and fallen hard, but still… why her?

He probably could have had anybody, had he been willing enough to bother, and yet his heart chose this woman who was barely older than he was. Was it even right to be calling her a woman? Because, without her armor on, she looked more like a young girl than an actual woman.

The first time he had seen her, she had been wearing the exact same dress as she did now. Her mother's dress… Only then, she had only worn it to surprise her father. Instead, without her actually knowing it, it had been Oswald who had been surprised. He had to be a blind fool to not realize how beautiful she looked, and it caused his breath to hitch.

But that hadn't been what caused these feelings. Despite the fact that she looked absolutely breathtaking, there was just something about her. That dress merely brought to attention what any many could already tell, that she was beautiful.

It hadn't just been the dress, or the way her hair had fallen down her back in waves. It had been that small, almost fragile smile that had played on her face at the thought of surprising her father. Upon seeing it shatter when her father had come in and didn't even seem to realize just what she was wearing, Oswald had had the sudden urge to leap down from his hiding place to comfort her. Back then, he would have denied that, but now, he felt he could actually admit to himself that he didn't want her to feel so sad.

Maybe he had unconsciously realized how much alike they were. Both of them wanted nothing more than to love and be loved in return. For him, it didn't really matter whom it was, but she asked for nothing more except that her father would love her like a real father should.

A wish like that shouldn't even need to exist, but for them, it meant everything.

At that time, he knew he couldn't afford to be distracted by her, yet he had still taken the feather that had fallen from her hair-ornament. And he still had it, actually. Why he hadn't thrown it away after he had picked it up, he wasn't too sure himself. He would've liked to believe he kept forgetting, but the truth was that he had never wanted to throw it away.

It gave him a little bit of courage to dream about how his life could have been. What if Melvin had never found him? What if he could have lived with his parents? What if? What if?

There were far too many possibilities in the world. But he did know one thing for sure; if Melvin had not taken him away from his parents, he would have never met Gwendolyn. Would have never found the courage to hope… hope that, maybe someday, she might just love him back.

Or was that hoping for too much?

As much as he wanted her love, he couldn't force it on her. To her, he was her enemy, still. He had nearly killed her, out on the battlefield when it came to the Cauldron. Would she ever be able to see past that?

Maybe this wasn't such a good idea, after all…

But then he remembered Onyx, and how he could only see Gwendolyn as an object, and he shook those thoughts away. He couldn't imagine her enjoying the idea any more than he had, and because of that simple fact, he felt that he was possibly the only one who would understand such feelings. Humans were not objects and should never be treated as such. Least of all by their family…

Taking a deep breath, he gazed at her longingly.

"What will you think when you see me as you awaken?" he asked silently, even if she couldn't hear, or answer him. Walking closer to the bed, he placed one armored hand on the bedpost, looking down on her as she continued to sleep and dream. He wondered what was she dreaming of…

Looking down for a moment, he continued to speak, voice almost shaking as badly as he was at that point.

"Will you hate me…?" he asked, before glancing up to her face again. "Will you run away, forever?"

After a moment, he shook his head softly. This wasn't getting him anywhere.

"Such musings are pointless," he admitted softly to himself. Bringing up a hand over his madly beating heart, hoping to still it a little, he said, more to himself than to her: "I can't go back to the man I used to be."

Walking a little closer, he looked down upon her face. She looked so content, as she wasn't even aware of what had been going on while she slumbered. He wondered what dream she was having, and couldn't help but wish he could be a part of that dream.

He just wished he didn't have to wake her from that dream.

"No matter how you react… and even if it only brings me pain…" he whispered, as he sat down next to her, never breaking his gaze away from her face. "I want to see…" he started, before he had to pause to calm his nerves a bit. Why was his heart pounding so hard in his chest now? "I want to see my reflection in your eyes…"

Taking another deep breath, he continued in a mere whisper: "I want to hear… I want to hear those soft lips speak my name…" Placing his hand over his heart, he listened to his heart beating erratically for a moment, closing his eyes softly. "And if, for a moment, a smile lights your face…" he said, slowly looking up at her sleeping face. "I will be able to live."

Lowering his hand to rest it on hers, he smiled softly. "No one controls me now." Leaning forward, he looked down at her, feeling his heart begin to pulse in his throat now. "From now on, I act on my own…" he whispered, focusing on her face as he tried in vain to calm himself down. "For you…"

After a moment longer, he placed his hands besides her body, taking hold of her right hand softly, before moving his face to hers, closing his eyes slowly, before tenderly placing his lips over hers.