Last Chapter! Whoot! Please don't be too disappointed, I know you'll miss it, but just keep an eyes out for the sequel! It will be very very cool. Anyway, onto the chapter, enjoy!
Junon had loomed close all morning, and as they drew ever close Vincent felt inexplicably disappointed, he had known it wasn't possible for them to somehow become shipwrecked on some small uncharted island, but that didn't stop him from thinking about it in a rather irrational moment. He was standing next to Karen, deliberately facing away from the approaching city, as if that alone could prolong the time. Karen held Cid as he sat on the topmost railing, pointing at Junon and asking questions a mile a minute. He wanted to know what it was like, who lived there, what his Aunt was like, if she was married, were their other children to talk to and play with, would he like it there, where there birds, and would he get to learn how to swim?
Vincent was unwillingingly drawn back into the memory of his mothers flight from his father. It had not been a long journey, but she had bundled him up, handed him a bag of possessions that weren't his, and he had left all his vestiages of childhood behind him as they made their way silently through the darkened streets of Midgar to the house of a friend of his mothers. He had asked no questions, had done as he was told when he was told, and he did it silently.
He wondered if his mother had perhaps been more like Karen would he have turned out differently? Had she been able to give her emotions freely, leave her past behind her, would he perhaps have been able to say something right now. Ask them to perhaps come with him to Midgar, or ask to maybe stay with them here. Just for a while, a week at most, until he was due back at work. Would he be able to do anything but leave them in Junon and continue on alone?
He stood quietly, listening to Cid's questions, Karen's answers, and he wished he could bring himself to speak.
They had docked and disembarked, and Vincent continue to walk with them, claiming (though he was never asked) that he would see them to Karen's sister before leaving. He never said it aloud, but it was his excuse, anything else was heading into uncharted territory and he didn't think he could ever bring himself to do what he had to do and leave.
He hated to think that when he left them he would never see them again, though it was very likely that was what would happen.
They reached the sisters faster than he had hoped.
There was a welcome unlike any Vincent had seen before between the sisters, filled with hugging and sarcastic comments, the likes of which Vincent found quite funny. Cid was swept up into it also, and seemed to be a little flustered with all the attention his aunt was bestowing on him. Then Karen's sister's eyes turned to him, and narrowed.
"Whose this?" she asked.
Karen rolled her eyes. "This is Vincent Valentine, May, he was nice enough to escort us here."
"Off the boat, awful nice of him indeed." she looked at him suspiciously, and Vincent was a little unsure over what to do, May was hardly hsi enemy, so killing her for looking at him like that wouldn't perhaps be the best option he could take.
"No May, from there." she emphasised, and May's eyes widened a little.
"Well, that's entirely different. Do you want so dinner?" she asked him.
Vincent blinked, bewildered by the sudden change in attitude, and looked to Karen for some sort of explanation. she shrugged helplessly. "Sorry, she's a little over-protective. She never did like the idea of me marrying Cidney, and I guess she was right." her lips twitched into a self deprecating smile. "She'll never let me live this down you know."
May leveled a glare then at her sister. "I'm standing right here Karen. You, do you want to stay or not?" she raised an eyebrow, pulling a pack of cigarettes from a pocket in her skirt and lighting it. She held Vincents gaze squarely and he wanted to nod. He wanted to stay here, spend some more time with Karen and Cid. But he shook his head slowly.
"I'd best be getting back to Midgar." he told them.
He saw that Cid's face immediately fall, and his lips formed a pout. "But Mr. Vincent--" he began, but Karen cut him off, smiling at Vincent, almost as if she could see through him and knew he wasn't really saying what he meant. But she never called him on it.
"Now Cid, I'm sure Vincent is a very busy man, but I'm sure if you asked nicely he might just write you some letters, and maybe, when he's not working, he might be able to visit." She looked at him, daring him to say he wouldn't. Not because she wanted him to do something he didn't want to do, but because she knew this was exactly what he needed, a good enough excuse that didn't rely on him searching his feelings. He could act the way his instinct told him (which was to indeed write and visit as often as he could manage) with worrying about why he was doing it.
Hell, that didn't even make sense to himself, but he was going to grasp at whatever straw was offered to him.
"Will you write, and come visit Mr. Vincent?" Cid asked.
May snorted and Karen glared at her, but Vincent didn't even begin to try to interpret, knowing it was best left alone. "I'll try my best Cid." he promised.
Cid's face scrunched up, and he looked as if he were about to burst into tears, but he just studied Vincents face as he had down when they had been formally introduced, before nodding. "'K." the little boy sniffed.
Karen smiled. "Thank you." she said, and Vincent knew she meant for everything, but he couldn't bring himself to tell her to keep her thanks, it had been re-payed over and over so many times from they had met.
"Your welcome." he said stiffly.
Everyone stood, at something of a stalemate. Because Vincent didn't want to go, and Karen and Cid didn't want to say goodbye. So they stood in something of a quandary, until May had obviously had enough, and crushing her now spent cigarette on the ground she said loudly. "Enough standing, dinner, inside, now." she startled them all and they all looked at her. "That includes you Vincent Valentine. In." she pointed inside the House and Vincent surprised himself by complying.
Dinner passed pleasantly, Karen and May bounced off each other in such a brash was that Vincent could seem to help finding amusing, though his eyes stayed mostly on Karen. While the sisters traded life stories, he and Cid had started a food stealing mini war against each other, which Vincent deliberately let the child win, only to end up blushing when he found Karen struggling to hide a laugh and realised how childish he must seem.
He left afterwards, a little lighter of heart, followed by waves and calls of "You have to remember to write!" from Karen, and "Visit! With presents!" from Cid. As he turned towards Midgar, leaving Junon behind, he was sad, because though he would try and write as often as he could, and would try to visit (after all, Cid was expecting a present now and Vincent wanted to deliver), he knew that it would be far too long, and he would miss them.
He hadn't felt sad of Lucretia, not really. Betrayed most definately. Which was better? He didn't know, but he was glad to have the memories of Karen and Cid and their journey here. As he reached the road his mind turned to composing his first letter to them. He would write it when he reached Midgar, and he would not question the instinct that made him chose to do it. He would see them again, soon.
Personally speaking, I did not like this chapter, but I tried, and I tried, and I wrote and I rewrote, but this was the best I could do. I'm feeling a little out of sorts because I keep going temporarily deaf and it's making me a little crazy, so I shall blame my ears and leave it at that. On another note. Cid's Aunt rocks! I didn't even realise until I re-read for the third time that she is a lot like Cid becomes, which explains why he is the way he is. lol. Please review, I'd truly appreciate it.