What Never Could
That bastard better hope that he never shows his face again. 'Cause if he did, you'd better believe that Ike would have his revenge. He sought his bittersweet vengeance against the one who ruined his life.
And outside the single-bed room in which he paced, the nature reflected his mood. It was a dreary evening, with harsh winds and blanketing clouds. The stinging rain demanded justice, creating liberty with its cold fist. It was the kind of rain that felt like daggers on soft, exposed flesh.
That was fine, though. Ike had no reason to trek into the outdoors. Bound and broken, he had been reduced to tears after what had happened, just this morning. He had locked himself in his room all day, so why stop now?
And to think, it had only been five days since the fall of Ashnard. The ultimate terror, man of injustice, and inducer of mayhem. He was gone, so peace could prosper. Elincia had retaken the throne, Daein was on the road to recovery, everyone was returning to their countries of origin, so all would return to normal again, right?
Five days later, though, terror struck again, this time in the form of a cold, heartless murder.
Two days after defeating Ashnard, Ike and his company were back home. Among them were Mia, who was joining them, and Ranulf, Lethe, and Mordecai, who were going to stay for a week before heading back to Gallia. And for a good two days, all was returning to normal. The company was beginning to get new job offers, old friendships stayed true, and the whole setting had an air of peace and serenity.
The morning of the fourth day was just like any other, except for the fact that Lethe still hadn't left her room by noon. Although that wasn't completely uncommon, Lethe, as a cat, had been known to be a heavy sleeper.
By evening though, at dinnertime, she still wasn't down, and that was something that had never happened before. Soren went to check it out, and he came back with a blemished, blood-stained kitchen knife, saying that it had been plunged into her cold, unbeating heart.
Ike had not said a word upon hearing that. He had been in his room for the entirety of the time since the dreadful act of dishonor. Indeed, he hadn't even confirmed what Soren had said. He couldn't buck up the courage to walk into the single room in which Lethe slept in her eternal slumber. He never got to tell her…
He never told her anything. Not a single word about how he felt. Never had he revealed how much he cared for her. Never did he speak of the rush he had inside whenever he just heard her name. The passion he felt for her was so great, yet never did he admit it out loud. It was just a secret, always hidden in his depths, and now, that is where it will stay, forever.
"Ike! Open up!"
They had been trying that all day. His friends relentlessly tried to get him to open his door, claiming they were trying to help him. Ike had ignored every one of these pitiful attempts to console the beast within.
And at first, this one was no different. But the voice soon added, "We found something, Ike! We need you to take a look at it!"
Reluctantly, Ike finally opened up the door, revealing Titania, clad in light leather armor and looking disheveled. Distressed, she walked into his room and closed the door behind her.
The first this she said was, "Oh goddesses, Ike, you look horrible. How are you feeling?"
Ike was dismayed. "I should have known that this was just a ploy." He sighed. "I'm sorry, Titania, I really don't feel like talking right now."
"Well, I not leaving." Titania said sternly. "Not until you tell me what's up."
Ike sighed. "Do you really want to know?"
Titania folded her arms across her chest and gave him a soul-piecing stare.
"I loved her, Titania!" Ike hollered hysterically, eyes glazing over. "I loved her and I never told her!"
"That's what I figured…" Titania murmured softly. "Look, Ike, you can't lock yourself away from your friends. That's what we're here for; to help you through these times."
"I can't do it, Titania!" Ike sobbed. "I can't take the regret! I never told her, and now I can't because she's been murdered!"
Titania paused for a moment. "Ike, she wasn't murdered."
"At least, I do not believe so."
"You mean she-she's still alive?"
"No, Ike, I'm sorry. She still lays dead in her room. But we found something in her hand. It is some kind of note."
"Have you read it yet?" Ike asked.
"What, are you crazy, where is it? Why not?"
Titania revealed a small, folded piece of paper in her hand. "Because it's addressed to you." She gave him the letter, patted him on the shoulder and left the room.
Slowly and expectantly, Ike unfolded the crinkled parchment. The handwriting was hasty and there were quite a few cross-outs, but the fact of the matter remained that it was Lethe's handwriting. And it definitely was not neat in anyway. Numerous dried-up puddles of tears lay on the note, making it hard to read. And at the very bottom was what seemed to be a pair of red lips, plastered to the paper…
My Dearest Ike,
It saddens me to think that, by the time you read this, I will have already passed on. There was so much I wanted from you, and so much I wanted to do with you, but in the end, all I will leave with you are my confessions.
You only get one life, Ike, so make what you can of it. I screwed up mine. I made all the wrong decisions and all the wrong choices. I did all the wrong things, and I can think of no better way to cleanse my shame than to end it.
Normally, such a choice may have been easy for me. But you, Ike, made it very difficult. The very thought of you makes my head soar, and I cannot think of a life without you.
You are beautiful in appearance as well as in essence. Never before have I seen a Beorc willing to suffer for the Laguz. For I have never met a man like you before, one who makes me feel so important yet so confused, so happy and so much less significant.
The day I laid eyes upon you until the day that I have died, I have never met a man quite like you. I cannot think of how long it would take to find another one like you, nor do I want to, for I cannot live without you by my side.
As much as my pride is trying to deny it, I cannot live by myself. Darkness creates light, hatred creates love, and you created the spark of passion that flows within me, never to be removed.
As much as I want to, as hard as I try, I could not bring myself to confess my feelings to you in life. We, clearly, were never meant to be. I wanted you desperately, as I desperately want you now, but I could not do it. In life I could not have you, and in death I could not tell you.
Ike, you cannot possibly fathom what I have gone, and am going, through. During the day, I spent the majority watching you as closely as I can, in secrecy. And at night, I cry myself to sleep, thinking of your undying beauty, engrained and implanted within my skull. And it pains me to think that I will never have it.
You gave me hope. You gave me inspiration. You are my inspiration. The only thing that kept me going was you. But now, with the war ending and all going back to normal, I would never have gotten to see you again.
I don't know if you share my feelings. I very much doubt it, but if by some miracle you did, than I am very sorry, Ike, but we never could…