Greetings and salutations
Greetings and salutations!! It's good to be back. I've just been inspired to write so much Fatal Frame lately haha. I think that this will be the last chapter of this fic. Thanks to those who have supported my work. Oh be sure to check out my Fatal Frame 100 series if you like the Kei/Rei pairing, I'll be sure post plenty of those lol. Enjoy the last chapter everyone.
Snow, it was the first snowfall of the winter. She sat on the steps of her front porch, tightening the blue scarf around her neck to retain some form of warmth. Rei watched the small flakes fall to the ground, covering the earth in a blanket of pure white.
"I hate the snow," she mumbled, watching her breath escape into the cold night.
She held her hand out in front of her, the cold sensation running all through out her body as a flake collided with her warm skin. She watched it melt in the palm of her hand, the water sliding onto the fabric of her jacket.
'It's been a long time,' she thought as she rested her head on her knees, her eyes fixated on the flakes that continued to fall from the sky. All was silent; the only sound that could be heard was her breathing.
It was hard to believe that it had been six months since the horrific events of The Manor of Sleep. Her hatred for the snow had stemmed from that experience; it was always snowing outside of the mansion, a strange illusion of peace that covered up the chaos of the tragedy happening within its walls. A single tear slid down her cheek, how could something as pure as snow remind her of the great pain she had to endure.
She still thought of him very often, though the pain had slowly begun to subside, she knew it was going to take a long time to recover…but a part of her couldn't bring herself to let him go. This was another reason she had begun to despise the snow…because it reminded her of Yuu.
"I'm trying," she spoke to the sky, as if sensing her fiancée's disappointment in her, "I'm trying hard to be happy its just…," she buried her head into her knees, not paying attention to the bitter winds biting at her cheeks, "It's hard you know?"
She didn't receive answer, nor did she really expect one either, she just wanted him to know that she was trying not to suffer over him anymore…it was difficult to get over someone you loved, who was your life, the very reason you woke up in the morning. Tears welled up in her eyes as these thoughts crept in her mind.
"I'm sorry," she said as they fell to the snowy ground, "I'm sorry I'm so weak."
The blistering wind began to pick up, causing her teeth to chatter. The night was growing colder by the minute, she was sure that the ice would cover the dirt roads around her house, she wondered if the ice already covered the lake.
'I think its time to get inside,' she thought to herself as she stood up from her spot of the steps, besides it was rude to be out here when she had company inside. Kei and his niece had decided to stop by earlier in the evening and she only said she would be out here for a minute. She wondered how long she was actually out there.
Rei began to turn around to enter the house, until something caught the corner of her eye. Slowly she looked over her shoulder to look at the front gate, her eyes widening at the figure that was standing there.
'No way…is this a dream?'
Yuu stood at the end of the yard, his eyes watching hers intently. She blinked a few times, wondering if his form would disappear, that this was some kind of apparition…but he didn't vanish. She turned her body so that she was facing him, her mouth agape with shock. Her legs unconsciously took a step towards him, the wounds that had begun to heal over the past few months reopening at the sight of him.
"Yuu…" her voice was quiet, almost in sync with the wind, but somehow she could sense that he had heard her.
She watched him nod slightly, the snow slowly beginning to fall heavier with each passing moment. A gasp escaped her throat as he turned away from her and began walking out of eyesight. She stood frozen for a moment, watching as his silhouette became smaller in the heavy storm.
Tears had begun to fall from her face, "N-No!" she exclaimed and took off in the direction he went in.
"Wait! Don't go!" she thought as she struggled through the snow covered ground to catch up to him.
She was only faintly aware that the door to her house opened and that someone was calling out to her, but she didn't care. She thought that she would never see Yuu again after he crossed over to the other world. The wind was biting at her wet cheeks, numbing her face as she dashed through the trees to where she saw Yuu walk off in. She stopped in the clearing to catch her breath, her eyes moving around rapidly for any trace of her fiancée.
"Where are you?!" she called out to him as she walked into the middle of the snowy field.
Silence was her only answer, she struggled to hear anything else, there were no footprints in the snow for her to follow, but she had sensed that he had been here. A sob escaped her lips, when she realized that it was probably a figment of her imagination. Why did her mind insist on playing such horrible tricks on her? Hadn't she suffered enough already?
"Why do you do this to me?" she asked to the howling wind.
Was she really such a bad person? A small cracking sound broke her from her grief, causing her to look around the forested area for the source.
'What was that?' she asked herself.
She scanned the trees for anything that could have caused the sound; it wasn't the sound of footsteps, that was for sure. Another sound echoed throughout the clearing, causing Rei's eyes to widen, finally realizing where the noise was coming from.
"The gr-" her sentence was stopped abruptly as her body fell into a pool of icy water.
She was so caught up with catching up to Yuu, that she hadn't even realized that she was standing on top of the frozen lake. A burst of oxygen escaped her lips as she tried to move her frozen limbs. The water seemed to freeze every part of her body, numbing it to the point where she could no longer feel anything.
'I…have to…get out of here. Before I drown,' she thought as she sunk deeper into the icy depths.
Rei let another burst of air escape her lungs, her eyelids growing heavier the further she sank. Was this really the end for her? After everything she had endured in the past year, was it really her fate to drown in a frozen lake. Her thoughts slowly drifted to her companions who were waiting at the house for her.
'I wonder if they noticed I was gone yet…it'll probably be too late when they realize…' It was getting harder to think as her body began to shut down.
'Miku…Kei…I'm so sorry. I'm such a fool.'
It was true, she was still chasing after something that had been dead for months now, and she just realized how important Miku and Kei were to her. Miku was her best friend, her housemate, someone who knew what it was like to lose someone important. And Kei…well she wasn't sure what Kei was to her, she knew he was an important friend to her, he had taken care of her for the past few months…but she didn't quite understand how she felt about him, after that night when she seeked his comfort from the thunder, she felt like he could be something more. She closed her eyes; feeling tired all of a sudden.
'I'm sorry Kei…sorry that I let you down.'
That was Rei's final thought before her body completely shut down. Her ears picked up the sound of someone calling her name from the surface, but her brain had lost too much oxygen to think of who it was. She was only vaguely aware that somebody had a grip on her wrist, stopping her from sinking further. Everything went black after that.
'It's…so dark. Why can't I-'
Her mind was so exhausted at the moment; she couldn't comprehend anything that had happened to put her in this state.
"Kei…she's starting to come around."
Rei slowly began to open her eyes, her blurry vision making out three silhouettes standing at her bedside. She was in her bedroom, covered in several layers of quilts and sheets; she could also feel a heating pad radiating it's warmth onto her back.
'But I…I thought I was dead.'
Her eyes slowly regained their focus and she could finally see the concerned faces of Miku, Kei, and Mio standing over top of her.
"Oh Rei," Miku cried as she gently hugged her friend, a look of relief evident in her tearstained face, "Thank goodness you're okay."
Rei didn't say anything; her mind was trying to piece everything together. She winced as she tried to get to a sitting position. She felt a warm hand against her shoulder stop her efforts; her dark eyes looked up to Kei's worried face.
"You shouldn't be moving after what you had endured Rei," his voice was soft, but she knew him well enough to know that he meant well.
"What…happened?" she managed to ask in a scratchy voice.
"Uncle Kei saved you from drowning Rei," Mio explained, her eyes lighting up with excitement to see that the older woman was finally awake.
Her eyes looked to Kei, noticing that he was scratching the back of his head, almost as if he were flustered by his niece's comment.
"Miku, Mio, could you excuse us for a moment?" Kei asked, his voice still soft, but there was a slight plead in his voice.
Mio looked from Rei to her uncle and smiled, "Of course, uncle. Hey Miku lets go play outside in the snow!" she exclaimed excitedly, dragging the older girl out the door with her, closing it silently behind them.
There was a tense silence in the room as Kei took a seat on the stool by Rei's bedside, a huge sigh escaping from his lips.
"You know…for a second there I…" she noticed a pained expression on his face, "I thought we had lost you Rei."
Rei looked away from his face unable to take the emotions that were swirling through his dark eyes; it only made her feel guiltier.
"I'm sorry," she said after a long pause, her voice much clearer, "I don't know what came over me."
She listened to Kei shift around in his chair for a more comfortable position, "I'm just glad that I got to you in time."
Her eyes widened slightly, was that who was calling her while she was sinking? She turned around to look at him, her dark bangs falling slightly into her face.
"You…You were the one who pulled me out?"
Kei nodded to her question, "You said you were only going out for a minute, when didn't come back inside after a while…I went to check on you," his eyes lowered to the ground, "When I reached the front door I heard you scream and quickly opened it to find you running out the front gate…you didn't answer back when I called after you."
Rei let out a deep breath after listening to his story, his eyes fixated on the ceiling above. She didn't know what to say, it's not like she could say she was chasing after the form of her former fiancée, after all he disappeared along with the Manor six months ago.
"You don't…You don't know how scared I was…that I had lost you."
Her breath caught in her throat at his words, causing her to turn to look at him once again. Kei's face was focused to the ground as if he were trying to hide his pain from her. She forced herself to sit up despite its constant pleas to stop.
"Kei I..." her voice trailed off, what could she say to him? She tried conjuring the words in her head, but for some reason she couldn't voice them.
A lump had formed in her throat and she could feel her heart breaking at his words. It was her fault that Kei was upset…just like the accident was her fault.
"I didn't mean to make you worry, it's my fault that you are suffering," she finally spoke, her eyes looking down to the blue covers, noticing small drops falling onto the fabric. She touched her eyes and realized that she was crying.
Her body tensed as two strong arms wrapped around her shoulders, Kei's head resting in the crook of her neck. Somehow despite the awkwardness…something about the embrace felt right to her, their bodies fit perfectly against each other. She moved her arm to touch to his hand, her fingers entwining with his.
"Don't blame yourself…you always say that. Bearing the world's problems on your shoulders," she felt his head moved to a different position on her shoulder, she could feel his breath on her neck. Good thing he couldn't see how flustered she was at that moment, despite the seriousness of the atmosphere.
"I hate seeing you suffer so much Rei. I want to lighten your burden…share you pain. I want to prove to you that you aren't alone in this world..." Rei was silent, slowly taking his words in, a strange warmth spread throughout her heart.
"I guess thats what you do when you love someone," he stated.
Rei slowly stiffened, did she just hear that correctly, "What was that?"
Kei lowered his eyes to the ground again; afraid that she would distance herself from him…well might as well go all the way.
"Yeah, for some time now," he continued, finally gaining enough courage to look her in the eyes, "I know I'm not Yuu, I never want to replace him in your eyes…I just want to take care of you and make you happy, fulfill the promise I made to him."
Rei sat there in shock, completely flabbergasted at the sudden confession. Kei looked up to the ceiling, a strange emotion sparkling in his eyes.
"I guess near death experiences make people say crazy things," he said, allowing a chuckle to escape his throat.
Rei didn't know what had gotten into her in that instant, but she wrapped her arms around his neck, her head resting against his chest. She could tell that she had caught him off guard as well.
"I have this feeling…" she said after a moment, "That Yuu had something to do with this."
She felt Kei nod against her head, "I think he did," she could hear the smile in his voice.
An image of Yuu appeared in her mind, 'You want me to move on don't you? That's why Kei was brought into my life.'
A smile found its way across her lips, "I think he made the right choice with you Kei. I don't think it could have been anyone else."
She listened to his chest rumble as he let out a chuckle, "You don't have to worry about being alone anymore Rei, I'll take care of you from now on."
Rei closed her eyes, 'I can sense you are happy now Yuu…until we meet again.'
She tightened her embrace around his neck, "I know…thank you for always being there. I promise to share your pain as well Kei."
They stayed in each others hold for what seemed like an eternity, neither willing to let go of each other as the snow silently continued to fall. Maybe Rei didn't hate the snow as much as she thought, after all a new love had slowy begun to burn in her heart because of it. She never had to worry about loneliness any longer.
Well that's all. Hope you enjoyed it and hope it wasn't too dramatic. Anyway this is the last chapter of this fic. Though I am currently writing more Kei/Rei fics among others. Thank you to all who supported me and I hope this wasn't a complete disappointment.