Final Fantasy X-2 - Six Months Later
"Are you sure you want to do this?" Tidus' face, usually so merry and careless, was now etched with lines of worry and concern. The expression didn't seem to suit his features, and hung on his face in a way that made Yuna doubt her once determined decision.
"I'll be fine," she said, despite her own growing anxiety.
It had been six months since Tidus' return, in which time things had begun to settle. They had been living together in Besaid, happy newlyweds, with everything they could possibly hope for. Tidus spent a lot of his time with the Aurochs, Yuna with the Gullwings, but they could never stay apart for too long, always returning to what they could finally call their home. Life had been perfect. Yuna couldn't have asked for more.
And then the inevitable had happened.
"Why can't I come with you? I thought I was your guardian?" Tidus said, a small smile returning to his face.
Yuna drew her gaze away from him at this comment, and despite Tidus' intention being only to bring a smile, it pained her somehow. Guilt ate away at her insides. She couldn't keep lying to him forever.
Squeezing the hand that clung to hers, she said "This is something I have to do on my own." Reaching forward, she gave him a small peck on his tanned cheek, then added, "Don't worry; I can take care of myself now."
It must be odd for him, Yuna thought, to have left her as the fragile girl that was always surrounded by guardians, receiving almost constant protection, and then return to find the woman she had grown into. She'd changed so much in just two short years – he had noticed it right from the start. She was a lot less dependant on other people now, and her time with the Gullwings had strengthened her, not just physically. Even after six months, Tidus didn't seem able to fully accept that. Occasionally, Yuna wondered if he missed the old Yuna, the one he had fallen in love with in the first place…
Her musings were drawn to a halt as she felt the familiar jolting motion of the Celsius stopping mid-flight. Used to Brother's reckless driving, Yuna was able to quickly right herself and avoided falling from the bar stool on which she was perched. Tidus wasn't so lucky.
After helping him up, they exited the Cabin and took the lift straight to the Bridge where Brother was waiting expectantly. Upon seeing Tidus, his face turned a little red.
"The Calm Lands," He announced shortly, not meeting Yuna's eyes.
"Thanks, Brother," she said, smiling at him, before grabbing Tidus' hand and leading him towards the ramp that led off the Celsius, down to the Calm Lands Gorge.
After she'd found out about it, Yuna had become terrified. She couldn't tell Tidus. Not yet. At first she had just tried to pretend nothing was wrong, but Tidus knew her too well. She couldn't hide the fact that she was scared, terribly scared, yet neither could she reveal to him what the problem was. If her fears were true…
In the end she told Lulu. Lulu had understood, and was able to reassure her, if only a little. Yuna's fears had subsided a bit after that, but not entirely. There were still things even Lulu couldn't answer. Questions that could only really be answered by one person.
"If all the holes lead to the same place, why not just jump down the one in Besaid?" Tidus asked. They were standing at the edge of the hole, looking down into the blackness below. It was a long way down, and it somehow seemed more daunting than it had done last time she had been in this position. "Because I don't want to cause a big fuss. There are always people going in and out of the temple in Besaid, right into the Chamber of the Fayth. Few people know where these holes really lead to, and if someone saw me jump down one… well, it would take a bit of explaining. Besides, I haven't ridden on the Celsius for ages, and they were passing by here on the way to somewhere or other – off to look for spheres, probably."
In truth, the latter of the two reasons was the more prominent one. She hadn't left Besaid in weeks. After the news, she wasn't really in a position to be leaving on her usual sphere hunting expeditions with the Gullwings. She needed some time to think things over. Officially she was still a member, but after moving in with Tidus six months previously, things had changed considerably. Because she no longer lived on the ship, she wasn't part of a lot of the action that went on. In some ways she missed it - the unpredictability of life on board the Airship, waking up in a different place every morning - and often considered following in the footsteps of Rikku, who had simply got her man to come along. Gippal had left the Machine Faction in the hands of his deputy, and flown off with them - though he frequently returned to make sure things were still going smoothly. Having lost both Shinra and, for the most part, Yuna, the Gullwings were appreciative of the extra pair of hands. However tempting this was though, Yuna somehow knew she and Tidus could never permanently leave Besaid behind; they were both too attached to the place – not to mention a certain toddler who would never allow them to go.
There was nothing left to do now but jump. Tidus was still holding onto her hand and trying to dissuade her, but she had made her decision. Slipping her hand out of his, she took a few steps back. She hesitated for a moment, doubting herself, but Lulu's comforting words drifted through her mind: "It'll be ok. It's only been a few weeks, after all." Gathering what small supply of confidence she had left, she took a deep breath, then jumped. For a split second the world stood still – the dark chamber where she had both attained and fought Yojimbo, the worried face of her husband, the looming blackness below – then she began to fall. Though it took only a few seconds, it seemed far longer. For what felt like an eternity, the air was rushing past her face, her eyes were tight shut, she was grasping her stomach - then it was over. She landed fairly softly on the springy ground, and slowly, carefully picked herself up.
There was darkness all around her, save for the pinpricks of light that faintly illuminated the vast blackness somewhere in the distance. As her eyes began to adjust, familiar shapes came into focus; the winding paths that led, she knew, to the Heart of the Farplane, the strange platforms on which she had fought her beloved Aeons for the second time, a few stray pyreflies that drifted around slowly and aimlessly. The quiet, peaceful atmosphere of the Farplane did not extend this far, despite how physically close this place was to it. Instead, there was a strange, eerie feel here; the air around her carried a thick, musty scent, and strange, haunting sounds could be heard in the distance, like a constant wailing of the fiends, the souls that could not find peace. Yuna shivered, and clutched her guns tightly. The cool, metallic feel of the triggers beneath her fingers comforted her, yet it felt odd to be down here without Rikku or Paine by her side. Their absence made the place seem all the more daunting. Taking a deep breath, she began to descend.
This wasn't the first time Yuna had journeyed to the Farplane since Tidus' return. They had gone down together, just a few weeks after his reappearance. Yuna had wanted to see the Fayth who had brought Tidus back, they both had. After thanking him repeatedly, Yuna had asked the crucial question: "When will you stop dreaming?"
She reached the third platform. Again, images sprung to her mind of the Aeon she had fought here – Anima, this time. She felt a familiar pang of guilt in her stomach, but dismissed it quickly. She had to stay alert; this place was crawling with fiends. One wrong move could have drastic consequences - there would be no-one to throw a Phoenix Down her way. Breathing deeply, she set off again.
The Fayth didn't speak for a long time. Tidus reached out and held Yuna's hand – he could see she was shaking. The Fayth seemed to notice this action, and smiled slightly. "We will continue dreaming" he said, slowly "Until the one that we dream for has passed on to the Farplane. Your dream will die only when you do, Lady Yuna."
"Thank you." She whispered. A tear slid down her cheek as she said this, overcome with gratitude for the boy that stood before her.
The change of atmosphere was immediately apparent as Yuna entered the Farplane. The delicate purple flowers rustled beneath her feet and the sound of the endless waterfalls soothed her. She smiled as the feeling of relief rose in her, and she found herself having to resist the urge to just lie down and sleep away all her troubles. The Farplane always had this effect on her – the tranquillity was so complete that life in the outside world seemed irrelevant, like some kind of strange and twisted dream. Fighting this strange emotion, she returned to the matter at hand.
However, now she was here, she had no idea how to begin. When she'd come here with Tidus, the Fayth had just appeared, drawn by their presence. Now however, she was at a loss. The Fayth she so longed to talk to was nowhere to be seen. Yuna had been concentrating so much on just getting down here that she hadn't thought of what to do if a situation like this arose. After a few minutes contemplation, she decided to start with the obvious.
"Fayth!? Fayth, are you there? It's me, Yuna, I need to ask you something." Calling the boy 'Fayth' sounded strange, yet she had no idea what other name to call him by. He had always been the one addressing her; she had never had to use his name before.
"Yes, I am here," came the reply. Yuna jumped. The voice had come from behind her. Spinning round, she saw the familiar face of the boy. He was short, and his appearance was that of a small child, no older than about twelve. He wore purple clothing, with a hood that covered his head, and some of the tanned skin of his face. Brightly coloured strips of material hung from his waist, upon each of which a strange, golden symbol was strung, covering a pair of dull grey shorts that reached his tiny knees. Two pyreflies slowly meandered their way around him, unable to be held in by such a feeble body. His outlandish appearance, however, was familiar to Yuna, and she knew that if he were to turn around, she would see the strange circular pattern that also formed the back of an Aeon she had once known so well: Bahamut. Yet there was something different about him. He seemed changed from the last time she had seen him. Although she knew that his body could not physically change – it had been fixed as the small boy for over a thousand years – there was something in the way he stood that exposed his weariness. Yuna felt a rush of pity for him, mixed with guilt at disturbing his sleep. When he spoke again, she recognised the exhaustion in his voice.
"Why are you here?"
"I'm sorry," she began "But I needed to ask you something."
"Go ahead." He said.
"I'm… I'm pregnant." Yuna said, as calmly as she could manage, though her voice still shook slightly. Silence greeted her words. She had expected some kind of reaction from the boy. Speaking these few simple words to anyone else would have resulted in an immediate response; whether it be in shock, happiness, or some other equally strong emotion, probably followed by words of congratulation. She had not expected this from a Fayth, but she had expected something a little more than indifference. It shocked her to see that no change had come to his face; she might as well have commented on the weather.
"Continue." he said when the silence had gone on for too long. Yuna, a little taken back, stammered on awkwardly.
"The father is Tidus – one of your dreams, you know…" her voice trailed off. At this comment the Fayth had shown the first sign of interest. He also seemed to notice her shock at his unresponsiveness.
"I'm sorry, Yuna. The lives of those of your world are so meaninglessly short that we do not generally concern ourselves with the trivial matters of a birth or a death, though it affects you greatly, I see." It was strange to hear these words come from the lips of a boy who looked so young. Though, Yuna realised, he must be one of the oldest beings in existence. A little reassured by his words, Yuna continued.
"Yes, I just wanted to ask you something… What will happen to the child? Would he be part of Tidus' world, or of mine? Would he be a dream? If you have to dream to keep Tidus alive, will it be the same for him? - or her?" She said all this in a rush, eager to finally get the answers she had longed for. She had been terrified that the child would fade away when they stopped dreaming, or maybe even before. So scared at the potential fate of the child, Yuna had barely recognised her pregnancy as a blessing. Now even more absurd worries were working their way through her mind - what about the Fayth? What if this meant the Fayth had to keep dreaming even after she and Tidus had gone? What if they refused? What if they refused to continue even now, for Tidus…? She could barely keep these questions from bursting out of her as she waited for the Fayth to reply. When he finally did, she was shocked.
"I… do not know." was his answer. Yuna was stunned into silence for a moment. All her hopes had been pinned on him knowing, and she had been certain that he would be able to tell her everything. She just stood there, unable to say anything. In the end, it was the boy who broke the silence.
"Understand, Yuna, that this has never occurred before. Not in a thousand years has a dream become one with someone from your world. I can only guess at the consequences."
"Then please, guess!" Yuna cried desperately. "This is my child we're talking about! I need to know whether he's going to fade when you stop dreaming too, or if he's going to be… different, somehow. I don't know what to do anymore! Please, just tell me something, anything that you know. For the child's sake, if not for mine." Even Yuna herself was shocked at the worry in her voice, the fears of the last few weeks finally unravelling into a final, desperate cry for help. The Fayth remained impassively silent for a few moments, then replied,
"I do not believe that your child will fade. If born in this world, he will belong to it, and therefore remain when we Fayth finally rest. However, as I have said, this has never happened before. I may be wrong." The silence that followed these words hung thick in the air. Even the wind seemed to have stopped to listen, and the waterfalls became a distant echo. Yuna couldn't quite accept what she was hearing. So… was it going to be ok? He seemed to think so. Yes, her child would be ok, she told herself. Immense relief suddenly began to surge through her, and she found herself smiling more brightly than she had in weeks. It's going to be ok. It's going to be ok. Yuna fell to the ground and lay silently in the flowers, savouring the feeling of utmost relief. The weight that had burdened her shoulders and the fear that had haunted her dreams for what seemed like a lifetime vanished. For the first time in weeks, she was utterly content. Unconsciously, her hands moved to her abdomen, and she began massaging her belly calmly.
"Thank you," she said aloud, looking up to where the Fayth had stood, but he was gone. She sat up and looked around, but there was no sign of him. He'd vanished. Yuna was alone again. Well, not quite. She looked down at her belly, and smiled.
"Tidus, I have something to tell you."
Author's notes (please read!):
I haven't fully completed Final Fantasy X-2 and got the Perfect Ending yet, so if any of the questions addressed in the story are answered in the Perfect Ending, whether differently or not, I apologise. And, btw, the answers in this thing are just theoretical – for all I know the reality could be completely different. The paragraphs in italics represent things that happened in the past, the paragraphs in normal type are the present situation, but I'm guessing you already figured that out. Also, I've often referred to the child as 'he'. That's simply because I thought it a little mean to call a baby 'it'. Yuna doesn't actually know whether her child is a girl or a boy (though I think it probably would have been a boy – I can't really imagine them having a girl, at least not as their first child). And, as you might have been able to tell, I'm quite the Rikku/Gippal fan, and couldn't resist slipping them in somewhere. Oh, and btw, this is my first ever Fanfic, so don't judge it too harshly! Thank you for reading – reviews would be much appreciated!
Disclaimer: Despite how much I'd like to, I don't own Final Fantasy X or X-2. Stares enviously at the Square Enix people