It is the last chapter!! I can't believe it. I almost feel sad that is done… (Sigh) Sorry it took so long to update, I had a lot of stuff happening and all…
Well I hope you will enjoy it!!
Disclaimer: Namco owns Tales of Symphonia.
They watched horrified as the Tower shook violently. Large chunks of stone and debris seemed to drop from the heavens, burning as gravity consumed it and dragged it relentlessly from the sky and pulled it down.
A piercing screech filled the air as the massive building spilt up from the base, a jagged line coursing up the side of the once symbolical sign of hope and salvation. The heavy stone rubbed and slid against itself as it groaned from the tremendous strain and weight.
Then suddenly everything seemed to give way. It seemed as if the stars themselves were falling from the sky, growing larger and brighter as they sped towards the ground. The tower crumbled away from the top, gradually working its way down as it collapsed.
They hadn't realized it before. It hadn't been until Colette had asked for Lloyd. He wasn't there.
Their eyes weren't trained on the falling, burning stones. They were fixed on the black doorway from which they had come.
Even Yuan and Genis were silent as they watched the door. Then a shadow formed against the dust. Everyone nearly rushed forward as the person staggered from the doorway, but Yuan reached there first. "Raine!"
The Half-elf Professor stumbled just as Yuan caught her. The platform shuddered and he quickly unfurled his wings and flew from the swaying platform and flickering stairs.
"Raine, are you alright? I—"
For nearly an entire second the sound of a hand striking flesh silenced out the roar of the destruction happening around them. Maybe two seconds…
Everyone backed away slightly from the two, including Genis as Raine's glare flared to a dangerous level while Yuan stood unbelievably frozen, a noticeable handprint forming on his pale cheek.
"YOU ASS! YOU SHOVED ME OFF THE FRICKING PLATFORM!!" Yuan swallowed and opened his mouth to speak when Raine wrapped her arms around his head and pulled him into a kiss, which Genis was sure, lasted much longer than needed. He grimaced and gagged while everyone else smiled after getting over their shock.
Raine finally pull away breathless. "Thanks for saving me again."
"W...wow…" was all Yuan said as he stared at her.
It was Colette who broke the silence, "Where are Kratos and Lloyd?"
Raine looked back, "He was right behind me. He put me down and told me to run for the exit." Everyone looked up at the trembling tower clouds of dust and debris plummeted surrounded it.
Lloyd coughed as he breathed in the heavy air filled with dust. It was getting more and more difficult to breathe. The constant shaking made it difficult to focus on anything within the haze, but he finally managed to see the form of Kratos bent over. "D…cough…Dad." Lloyd called out, crawling toward him.
He saw Kratos lift his head, pushing himself up. "Lloyd…"
Lloyd made it to his side, "Come on, we need to get out of here." Lloyd slid an arm around his father, hoisting him up. The tremors increased and they practically fell. That is when noticed the warp pad. "Oh, hell no!"
The large pillars that had toppled before now lay across the pad, blocking it. "Can we lift them?"
Kratos shook his head, "You are going to have to warp out of here."
Lloyd glanced over to his father, "What do you mean me? What about you?" then Lloyd saw his face ashen and pale. Dirt mixed with sweat streaked down his cheeks. His breathing was labored and ragged. "No way in hell! I won't do it!"
Kratos grabbed his son's shoulder forcefully, his eyes glaring, "I don't have enough mana left to warp out. You need to get out of here before this room collapses completely."
"You can't expect me to leave you here! I won't do it!" Lloyd shouted. He staggered as another tremor shook the building. "I can warp us both out!"
"Lloyd, you won't have enough mana for bother of us. Now get—" Kratos started, "Look out!"
Lloyd looked up as unearthly groan sounded around them and saw the last of the wall falling forward. He lunged forward grabbing Kratos' arm. "I AM NOT LEAVING YOU!" Lloyd focused his mana, oblivious to the rapidly growing shadow descending on them.
Something was different this time. His mana spread out around them as usual, yet, this time as it did Lloyd felt himself growing weaker, more tired. He struggled to maintain his hold on Kratos arm as his strength slowly began to ebb away.
"Lloyd, no!" He felt Kratos try to pull away from him, but he dug his fingers deeper into his arm. He felt a burst of wind as the wall loomed just inches above them. 'No! I am not going to let us die!' his mind screamed and then he blacked out.
Kratos' eyes opened slowly. It felt like sandpaper was scraping against them and he grimaced. The first thing he saw was grass. Small thin blades of grass brushing against he face and though he couldn't feel it, he could imagine the irritating itch. He brushed a hand across his face, moving the grass then stopped. Lloyd!
Kratos immediately pushed himself up and looked around. He was laying in the field near the Tower, though quite a ways from it. He searched for Lloyd, but he couldn't see him. He looked and saw the Tower was nothing more than a pile of rubble. It was gone.
"Lloyd!" Kratos winced as he moved and tenderly touched the back of his head. He drew back his hand and saw blood coating his hand. He ignored it and started forward again, his eyes constantly searching for his son. "Lloyd!"
"Kratos!" the seraph turned to see Yuan rushing towards him. "Kratos you are alive!"
"Where is Lloyd?" Kratos asked, but Yuan didn't seem to hear him.
"My God, you're a mess!" Yuan said as he stopped in front of his friend eyeing his tattered clothes and dirt streak face.
"Yuan!" Kratos nearly shouted, startling the half-elf. "Where is Lloyd?"
Yuan's face dropped, "Raine and the others have him. I heard you calling so I came to find you." He frowned, "He isn't doing to good."
Kratos didn't wait, shoving past Yuan he hurried in the direction where the half-elf had come from. He entered a small bluff bordering the edge of the field, his angelical hearing catching small phrases and words, though he couldn't understand what they were saying.
He pushed his way through the branches, aware that Yuan was following him and soon found himself within a small clearing. A small fire was lit in the center and the others were off to one side while Raine, Zelos and Colette were crouched around someone.
At the sound of the trees rustling everyone looked up and stared at Kratos, but he didn't see any of them. When Colette had turned around Kratos saw who the person was. Lloyd laid next to the fire, a thin blanket laying over him.
Kratos didn't move for a moment, his eyes frozen on the stillness of his son's body then a shiver coursed through the boy's body.
Kratos was instantly at his side. Zelos and Colette moved wordlessly, though Raine stayed. Kratos nearly choked as he saw his son's face.
Lloyd's face was drenched in sweat; his chocolate brown hair was dark, and plastered to his head. A grey and white pallor replaced the tanned apricot skin, making it appear clammy and cold. His mouth was a thin line between drawn, pale lips; his eyes were constantly shifting back and forth beneath his eyelids. His chest barely rose, trembling as if the small movement was an agonizing effort. He looked like he was dying.
Kratos couldn't stop the tears that creased down his cheeks, further smearing the dust on them. He placed a hand on Lloyd's forehead, gently sliding it back through his hair, lifting the wet strands. A tear dripped from his chin, landing on his son's face, as his hand continued to caress his hair. "Lloyd…" his voice quivered.
"I have tried to heal him, but…" Raine spoke quietly. Kratos didn't take his eyes from his son, but nodded his head, not trusting himself to speak. Raine slowly rose, leaving Kratos.
"Why did you do it? Why didn't you just leave me their and get out?" Kratos voice was barely a whisper. His eyes strayed from his son's face to his chest, watching the blanket lift ever so gently before settling down again.
Kratos used his free hand gently took Lloyd's. He could imagine the cold, damp feel of his skin. It would match the color. Kratos closed his eyes. "Don't die Lloyd."
Kratos felt a slight pressure on his hand and his eyes snapped open, to find him staring into Lloyd's red-brown ones. "You sure are demanding." Lloyd grinned weakly. His face was still ashen and white, but his eyes were bright. "Hey, dad."
Time moves slowly. Like wind blowing across the desert sands, rolling dunes moving so gradually, so little. Each small grain lifting and settling with the wind, shaping the sandy waves making it appear as a golden ocean frozen in time.
It is a sad thing. To some it is a burden, an obstacle that doesn't move fast enough. An invisible wall holding you back and restraining your goals and aspirations. To others it flies, passing you by as it were the wind, lifting you and carrying you along as it speeds through life so swiftly, forcing you to miss all the cherishing details and opportunities.
Lloyd felt both. His life was moving so slowly, now. It seemed as if he could study the entire world and still only a single second would pass. He missed nothing of what happens around him. His eyes, calculating and wary, afraid he would miss a single detail.
A nameless fear drove him to this. The fear of his past, nothing but an empty shell, filled with chaos and confusion that he couldn't understand, nothing, but a whirlwind of thoughts and dreams of who he was and who he was supposed to be. They seemed to carry him along as the wind of time would. Pushing him relentlessly forward as the wind pushes a sail of a boat as it glides through the water, like the wind pushes the trees as they bend and groan in protest while their leaves rustle.
No, Lloyd had been caught in the wind too and he had missed everything. He sighed, little more than a soft whisper of air. His red-brown eyes searched the sky, watching the thin wisps of clouds float and glide across the dimming sky. Twilight cast its mysterious glow on the landscape as its shadows replaced vibrant colors. It made him feel sad. Though in its own way, the shadowy golden light was beautiful, it hid all the brightness and gaiety of the colors.
The world was changing, he could feel it in the mana as it flowed and shifted around him. The world was one again; he had used the Eternal Sword and asked Origin to reunite Tethealla and Sylverant. It had worked, but it hadn't stopped the problem, Lloyd could tell almost instantly that the world was dying. The seed had to be sprouted and allowed to grow. Lloyd once again used the Eternal Sword to guide the mana from Derris Kharlan into the seed. Almost instantly it sped to earth where it absorbed into Tabatha. Lloyd knew it was Martel's spirit that inhabited the robotic girl.
Lloyd sighed again and shifted his weight from the on foot to the other. Lloyd wasn't sure anymore what he was doing now. After he had sworn to protect the young seedling that sprouted through the ruin rubble of the Tower of Salvation, Kratos approached him.
He wanted to be sent to Derris Kharlan.
Lloyd frowned; he hadn't been expecting his father's request. Why should he have been? It confused him even more as to why his father wanted to be stranded for eternity on the lifeless comet. Lloyd angrily confronted him, telling he wouldn't do it, but something in his father's eyes made him stop. His father was guilty about something, Lloyd knew that, yet why he felt guilty, he didn't know.
He left Kratos, saying he needed to think about it. He didn't want him to go, he was his only family left, other than Yuan, but even he wasn't real family. Lloyd didn't understand why he would want to leave him behind like this. "Are you leaving because of me?" he asked, speaking up into the sky.
Lloyd turned around to see Kratos step out of the shadows. The strange glow of twilight danced mystically across his enigmatic face. Lloyd wasn't surprised by the reply, though a question played on the tip of his tongue. But Kratos answered it before he asked. "I do not wish to cause you further pain. I am the reason why you are so confused and why you cannot remember. My choices have caused you nothing but grief and I won't allow myself to do it again." His eyes stared sadly at his son.
Lloyd raised an eyebrow and shook his head grinning, "Dad, you are really crappy at making promises you know that."
Kratos raised his head questioningly, Lloyd smirked "You said you didn't want to cause me anymore grief. Do you think I will be overjoyed to send my father to a dead comet? Do you think I will never think back and wish I hadn't done it? Do you think I would want to live on a world where everyone is a stranger to my past, including myself and send the only person who I can trust away? You have some twisted way of defining grief."
Kratos looked sadly at his son, "I only want you to be happy."
"Then stay! That is what would make me happy. I want my father by my side. Hell, if I could I would go with you to Derris-Kharlan, but I can't, I have to watch over the seedling. Can't you understand that I don't want you to go?!" Lloyd was now shouting.
Kratos looked away and Lloyd sighed, "Look, you asked me to think about it and I did. If you really want to go I…I will send you. I will send you, if that is what you really want."
Lloyd turned away and looked out across the rapidly darkening land. Yes, time could be a cruel thing. Cruel and sad. Lloyd knew that, depending on his father's choice, time would be painfully slow for him. If his father left, he would be alone. The others were too distant from him, he wasn't sure if he could go back even though they were more than willing to have him. No he wouldn't be able to go back.
"I will stay."
Lloyd didn't turn around immediately. No, his eyes stayed fixed upon something only he could see. The sun finally sunk beneath the horizon, the shades of twilight dimming to the sinister and foreboding blacks. Lloyd turned, his eyes flashing as the last ray from the sun struck them. Lloyd wrapped his arms around his father, head buried against his chest, eyes closed. "Dad?" his voice muffled.
"You know there is no going back, right? You can't change your mind."
Kratos grinned and pushed his son back gently, "I don't want to go back."
Lloyd smiled, "Good, because neither do I."
All done, (sniff) It is over. Review Please!