Lol, I know, I know, I have so many fics going that have been on hiatus for SO long, and here I am throwing another one at ya'll.
Hear me out, though! So, I got Tales of Vesperia for my birthday and I finished playing through it the first time just about a week ago. I love it, it's probably the best Tales game I've played since my first one 5 years ago. I especially love the main couple, YurixEstelle, which is what this fic is about (I hope that's why you're reading it ^_^ ).
Anyway, this fic is a YurixEstelle fic based on one of my most favorite moments between them and a little fact that I noticed after watching the scene on Youtube and reading that particular vid's comments. No one has made a fic regarding this, as far as I can tell, and this was popping up in my head so much last night I couldn't stop grinning! So, here is a oneshot (yes, oneshot, OMG it's been years…) of my interpretation of what happened.
Romance will overflow like the Lower Quarter's fountain at the start of the game, XD.
Disclaimer: MAJOR, MAJOR, MAJOR SPOILERS up until and a little after Zaude. Read at own risk. I don't own any of the characters nor the main events of the game. They belong to Namco. I do, however, own this interpretation. Wish Yuri could be MY dark swordsman…
He'd died. Or at least, that's what they all had at first thought. When she saw his eyes go blank for a brief moment and his near-limp body falling from the tall, ancient structure she'd compulsively tried to run forward, to make it all stop. Time, as far as she knew at that moment, was in slow-motion. She didn't make it, though, as she saw the last few wisps of midnight hair fall out of sight and the orange-haired girl who had done it stepping back from the edge, as if in a shock.
Was it a dream? Was it all a horrible, horrible dream? She remembered collapsing to her knees, her elegant traveling dress splaying out as it usually did. She could hear Rita's voice next to her, trying to get her attention, but she was somewhere else entirely, and though she knew not why she felt like this, there was no mistaking the horrible tug in her chest as if her very heart had been ripped out.
Her vision became blurry as she stared almost mindlessly at the place he'd fallen from. Hot tears rolled freely down her smooth, pale cheeks as she distantly heard Judith's gentle voice joining Rita's in her concern.
But she did not heed those voices, for her mind was still somewhere else, somewhere in the past, back when she was still confined to the castle that was both her home and her prison.
As she continued to cry at a slowly increasing rate, one word, nay, one name continued to race across her almost blank mind until finally escaping her lips in a breathless whisper,
She wasn't very sure why she was back here, in this town. Sure, she'd been born and raised here, but there must've been some other reason that compelled her to come back to the capital.
She was in the Lower Quarter, looking for something, but she wasn't sure what. Why was she doing this to herself? She'd insisted on coming here alone, so Judith had somewhat reluctantly dropped her off at the civilian's entrance. She wasn't without company though, as the strange canine that accompanied them had decided to come with her. On any other day, this would've excited her since the dog was finally warming up to her, but right now, she was still distant, her nearly blank eyes scanning the somewhat downtrodden buildings of the LQ for any sign of a long mane of black hair or gentle, brown eyes.
But he wasn't there either, and as the sun began to set and darkness engulfed the sky and land, she decided she'd stay at the little, but comfortable Inn, even though any other noble would've turned their nose up at it.
As she passed the fountain, Repede's sudden stop caught her attention. She looked at the dog, wondering what caught the intelligent canine's interest. Repede's ears twitched a bit and his one eye was scanning the area in front of him.
"Woof!" and he began to sniff at the ground in front of him and follow a trail only he and other animals could detect.
"What is it?" she asked, not expecting a voiced answer but she followed the strange dog on his quest to detect whatever it was he was smelling.
She suddenly found herself at the top of the stairs that led down to the Inn & Tavern, Repede having since stopped next to her with his tail wagging ever so slightly. But that no longer held her attention. No, what now held her attention was the familiar figure that she'd almost jumped off the same structure for just a few days ago.
"Y-Yuri?" She called out in a loud whisper. There was no one else on the streets, and no other nightly noise, so her voice did not go unheard.
When the figure reacted to the name a big smile spread across her face and Repede's tail increased its metronome.
"Estelle?" came the reply and she felt herself almost cry out in happiness. She never thought she'd hear that name coming from him again. "Repede?!" the dog lifted his head a bit more at his name.
"YURI!" She couldn't contain herself anymore and ran down the stairs two at a time, despite her dress, barely hiding her evident happiness as Repede barked and ran after her.
She threw all the formality she'd been raised with out the window, she was too happy to care how unprincess-like it was for her to do what she was about to do. Ecstatically she threw herself off the last step and almost tackled the young man while tightly holding on to him, as if afraid he'd disappear. He caught her and swung her to the side a bit so she wouldn't stumble, but he didn't let go.
"Oh Yuri, it's really you, isn't it?! You're not a ghost, right?!" She glanced at the ground beneath them that was just barely lit by the moon and stars. "Oh good, you have a shadow." She stated, closing her eyes in relief, never once letting go of the taller man.
"Yeah, I'm living!" he said with a laugh. "And that hurt, Estelle!"
She winced a bit at his exclamation of pain, but the overwhelming sense of happiness she felt did not detract one bit.
"I'm so happy…" she whispered slightly, her head resting against the fabric of his shirt, listening to the gentle, but steady, heartbeat she was glad to be hearing at the moment.
Repede sat silently slightly away from them, his tail never ceasing its happy metronome, as he observed his master's twitching hand and faint smile.
They were sitting on the steps now, side by side. She had since calmed down some, but the sense of happiness never left her heart, even as she held her hand out, using her healing artes to fix the remainder of the wound Duke had fixed up.
When she was done, she sat back at his side and clasped her hands together, suddenly nervous as to what to say or do now.
"Thanks…" he said, smiling softly at her through his messy bangs of ebony hair.
She nodded her head as a response, still unsure what she should say now, so many feelings were swarming around in her, some familiar and some foreign.
"I'm so happy…" she repeated for the third time since she found him. "When you fell…we weren't sure what had happened…we didn't know whether you were alive or not. Rita and Judith thought you were, but Karol and Raven…they weren't sure…Karol…he cried a lot…"
"Hm…" was all he managed to show that he was listening.
"We actually had a hard time getting down, but the Knights and Flynn came to help us. Flynn was very worried, he even sent out ships to look for you so many times…" She closed her eyes, feeling fresh tears forming just at the corner of her eyes.
"What about you?" he asked, somewhat softly. He knew it was probably not a good question, but he couldn't help but notice she didn't mention herself and curiosity had a bad habit with him.
"I…" She wasn't sure what to say. "I…was really worried. I wasn't sure what had happened, it was too fast…but, I still…" She was starting to cry now and her voice was getting somewhat hard to control, so she took to falling silent while covering her face with her spread out hand.
"I'm sorry…" he whispered, a stab of guilt piercing his tainted, but still kind heart. "I'm so sorry…" his gaze fell to the ground between his feet.
Silence fell between them as she tried to control the soft sobs that had come up unbidden. He wasn't sure how he could comfort her, though it hurt him to see her crying like she was, but he decided that his presence was enough since her crying was dying down.
"That wound…" she observed after she had finished crying. "Is that from…when you fell from Zaude?"
"Huh? Oh, yeah…I guess so…"
"Does it…still hurt…?" she asked, a bit meekly.
He smiled, appreciating how worried she was about him. No one had ever been this worried about him before.
"Only a little, it'll probably be bruised for a while." He stated before giving a soft, appreciative smile to her. "But, thanks to you, I'm better than I probably would've been otherwise."
Some warmth entered her cheeks at his thanks, but any redness was hidden by the mask of night. Another bout of silence fell between them. It was both awkward and yet strangely comfortable, both basking in the other's presence. Repede sat quietly in front of the two, letting them have their moment.
"Where are the others? What are they doing now?" he asked, slightly amazed he hadn't thought to ask earlier.
"Rita went back to Zaude with Judith to study it some more. I think they're back in Aspio now. Karol and Raven went to Dahngrest to try and keep the guilds under control, since relations with the Empire have worsened again. Flynn's just being Flynn, going off anywhere the world needs him."
He smirked at the last part. "Sounds like everyone's had a hard time…" The smirk died down as another curious thought entered his mind. "So, why did you come here alone with Repede?"
She fell very silent, unsure how to answer the handsome ex-knight. Why had she come here? Rita and Judith had offered to let her go back to Zaude with them, but she'd refused in favor of coming here with Repede. Why had that been? Did she not want to go back to the place he had supposedly died?
As if sensing her distress, Repede moved forward a bit and rested his head in his master's lap, receiving a head rub from said master. He whined a bit and gave a quick lick to the hand that had acknowledged him, fierce loyalty and love reflecting in his one eye.
The young swordsman decided to drop the subject, since he could see how nervous the girl had become.
"Thanks for coming, though. I…missed you…both of you." He said, fumbling over his words a bit as if embarrassed.
A small smile graced her lips, the feeling of complete happiness never leaving her heart, but upon closer inspection, she noticed something else was mixed in with that happiness, a feeling she didn't exactly know, but a good feeling nonetheless.
She stood up, deciding it was getting very late.
"I think you should still rest today." She said, turning to face the black-haired man. "Rita and everyone can wait a little longer to see you."
He closed his eyes, smiling slightly at how much she was caring and worrying about him. It made him feel strangely happy.
"As you wish." He said, standing up as well.
Yuri's room was very small. At a previous time before Alexei's betrayal, they had all paid a visit to the small inn, the girls staying in the second, unused guest room while the boys and Repede stayed in Yuri's room. According to Karol, it had been very cramped with the four of them.
Now, though, the room wasn't overly small. Repede and Yuri still had their own beds in the room, but the room had been made for only one person, not two and a dog. Yuri had offered his bed in exchange for the floor, considering how she was a princess, but the pink-haired girl had refused, insisting it would be bad for his condition.
The Innkeeper had brought up some extra blankets and a pillow for the girl, but there were no spare mattresses or beds for the girl to make a makeshift bed.
"Estelle, you need to get rest too. I'm all right, really. You don't need to sit up the rest of the night."
She had decided to sit in a chair next to the bed, fearing something might happen to his wound and feeling the need to be awake in case she needed to use her healing artes again.
"But you're still wounded! What if something happens while we're asleep and your wound opens again?"
He'd already been laying on his bed when she voiced her concern. He turned his head to the side to face her.
"I don't…I don't want you to die…so I have to make sure you're safe." Some more tears were starting to form at the corners of her green eyes once again for that day.
Another stab of guilt pierced his heart as he noticed the sparkling drops of water that threatened to come out.
"Hey." He said, reaching out and resting the palm of his hand on top of her head—for she was close enough to use the side of the bed for a pillow if she wanted to—before gently and briefly stroking the spot. "Look at me, Estelle." He saw her eyes move in his direction. "I'm fine. I'm alive and there's no way I'm gonna die and leave that giant eyesore in the sky."
She sniffled, but remained silent as if considering his words.
"I just…I don't want to lose you again…" this time a tear did escape, rolling along its journey down her cheek.
He noticed this and moved his hand from the top of her head to cup her cheek, using his thumb to brush the stray tear away. Somehow they had found eye contact in the minimal light the room offered at this time of night.
"You won't, I promise. Get some sleep; you've had a longer day than I have." He noticed some recognition to what he'd said, but also some reluctance as well. "Don't worry, I'll still be here in the morning. I'm not going anywhere, and I'm definitely not gonna die for a long time. Please, Estelle?"
She was silent but finally nodded, his hand still cupping her smooth cheek.
"Alright…" She brought one of her own hands up and placed it over his slightly larger hand.
He let his hand stay under hers for a moment longer before removing it and placing it back at his side. She followed his action by folding her arms on the side of the bed in front of her and resting the left side of her head on top of them.
"Your back's gonna be really sore in the morning if you sleep like that." He stated, examining her current position.
He considered a new offer that formed in his head for a moment before deciding to extend it. Slowly he pushed himself up with his elbows, causing a brief flash of pain from his abdomen, but he was otherwise fine. He scooted over until he almost felt his back against the wall. Now there was some space big enough for a slightly smaller body than his was.
"Here." He motioned toward the spot he made when he noticed she'd been watching him.
She felt nervous again and felt her cheeks warming again.
"B-but, won't there not be enough space for either you or me?"
"Well…" he felt himself blush a little, "We'd have to be pretty close for both of us to be comfortable, but it's ok. I won't do anything to you, I promise. I may be male, but I do have some morals, you know."
She considered it a moment. It would be more comfortable than the chair…
"Ok. I trust you, Yuri."
With that, she joined him in the bed that was just big enough for the two of them if they laid close enough together. They had to lie so close that Yuri was holding her, but neither of them seemed to mind. Yuri rested his chin on top of her head, smiling softly at how comfortable their current position was with her head near the spot it had been a few hours ago. He sighed softly as he closed his eyes, feeling content for the first time in his life.
"Is this how you felt…?"
He narrowed his eyes a bit in confusion. "What do you mean?"
He felt her small, thin fingers playing with the fabric of his shirt, slightly amusing him with how cute the action was.
"I mean…is this what you felt when…when Alexei was controlling me and…I was asking…to die…"
He sighed a bit, hating to think of that time but he was curious about her question. "What do you feel, exactly? I can't really compare unless you give me something to go on."
She was silent for a moment and rather still, the only movement being her fingers that were still playing with a piece of the black cloth until,
"Scared." Came the soft reply. "And relieved…and happy…and something else that feels kind of like happiness, except warmer and…I don't know…happier?" She was still confused by the foreign feeling that had been present in her heart since she'd found him hours earlier, yet it seemed to her now as if it had been there longer.
"Hmm…" he thought for a moment on what his reply should be. "I guess I was a little scared." He admitted, staring straight at the wall on the other side of the room. "When I saw what he was doing to you, making you do, it really angered me. You were…You…You didn't deserve to be treated like a tool, it just wasn't right, but when I saw how scared you were and how that bastard wasn't caring at all, it really made me want to give him a piece of my mind and return you safely to us." He subconsciously tightened his hold on her as he said that, but she made no objection. "Then, when we finally saved you, I was relieved and…happy, because I knew you were finally safe and that he or anyone else could never use you like that again."
She remained silent through his confession, contemplating them before asking,
"What about when…when I attacked you…?"
A lump formed in his throat before he forced a somewhat painful swallow. She just had to go and ask that question, didn't she?
"You didn't attack me. You had no control; Alexei was the one attacking me through you."
"But it was still me, even if he was making me do those things. It was still my sword and my body that was attacking you…"
"You weren't doing it of your own will, because you would never raise your sword against anyone unless it was a monster. And besides," he turned his head down a bit to slightly nuzzle the head of hair beneath his chin. "I didn't want to fight you. I told you that you weren't going to die, under any circumstances, and I meant that."
She smiled slightly.
"You circumvented the question, Yuri."
He chuckled, amazed at how quick she'd adapted to the world outside the castle in the months since they first met.
"Did I, now?"
He laughed a little more when she moved slightly to look at him with an annoyed face. When his laughter subsided a bit he went back to being serious.
"What's with all the questions all of a sudden? Didn't you want me to rest?" he looked up slightly from his position to see the status of the night outside the window. "And it's most likely well past midnight by now."
She blushed a little. "I'm sorry…"
He smirked a bit at her sudden shyness.
"Good night, Yuri."
He felt her go slightly limp in his arms and heard her breathing even out. He figured she must've been pretty tired. Gently so as not to wake her, he pulled her closer into a slightly more protective—and needy—embrace. She was warm, and he was somewhat surprised to find that he liked the amount of warmth there was between them.
Keeping one hand on the small of her back—he was somewhat scared of where it would go if he let it—he brought his other hand up to rest behind her head, bringing her a bit closer to him. Absentmindedly, he began to stroke his fingers through the short mass of carnation hair, silently observing how soft it was to the touch.
He hadn't forgotten her question and it was tugging at the edges of his mind even now. He'd wanted to answer her, but the truth was that he wasn't exactly sure of an answer. She shifted slightly in her sleep, curling a little closer to him.
He smiled, feeling relaxed and thankful to be alive. Tiredly, he decided that he'd answer her question another day once he formulated a complete and honest answer. So with a content sigh he closed his eyes and shortly joined his companion in the world of sleep.
Long X_X. This was my first Tales fic EVER, so please be nice. I've only been through 1 play-through of Vesperia, but I tried to keep them both as in-character as I could, so I apologize for any time they may've seemed OOC.
I DID warn you that romance was going to overflow like the LQ's fountain, didn't I? XD. I'm sorry, I really tried to keep angst out of it but it always managed to come back at some point, which is why Estelle may sometimes seem OOC for the scene. I don't know why, but I just really love angsty romance...does that make me a bad person?
Hope everyone enjoyed this, it was a fic I felt needed to be written. Besides, there needs to be more Yustelle on the internet! I'm talking fanfics, fanart, and AMVs, guys!
By the way, if you couldn't exactly tell, this was an interpretation of what happened between the glomp moment and the next morning. Because Estelle did suggest that he rest, and then after two notices it just goes to the next morning and a skit. They should've shown what happened between then, I would've loved to have seen it…