A/N: Woah! I actually wrote a fanfic! But this one actually has an interesting story behind it. It originally was meant to be a simple Support conversation between two characters, but after the announcement of the Valentine's Day FE fanfic contest on DeviantArt, I decided to finish this idea, and before I know it, it had become a full-fledged one-shot. I'm very happy with how it turned out, and I hope we get more Aran/Laura fics in the future. I love those two, but it sucks there's so little to read about them.
Happy early Valentine's Day and all that.
It was a very intense battle. They had just taken out a whole army of Red and White Dragons, including the very King of Dragons himself. After such a difficult fight, the group had agreed to take a couple of hours to rest. They needed to be in full shape for whatever came out afterwards, after all.
On one corner of the vast room inside the Tower of Guidance, a brave, strong soldier known as Aran and a small, beautiful, and very kind priestess named Laura stood facing each other. Laura was looking around Aran's arms to see if she had missed any injuries on his body. She had already healed everything that had left a bruise or an open wound, but doing a double check shouldn't hurt.
"Laura, I'm telling you. I'm fine." Aran repeated for like the fifth time now. "Trust me, you've healed everything by now."
"Aran, you know I must do this." Laura replied calmly. "This is probably the most important battle we'll ever have to face. I mean, in a matter of hours we'll be going against the Goddess herself… we can't afford to make any mistakes."
"You know, Laura… I was meaning to ask you this for a while now." Aran drifted the conversation a bit. "How do you feel about fighting the Goddess?"
Laura's hands froze as she held Aran's left arm. She looked at the floor for several seconds, without answering.
"I have faith."
"You… you do?" Aran sounded slightly skeptical.
"On one hand, I'm very sad for all the innocent people that were turned to stone. I want to save those people. That's the main reason why I'm here." Laura still was holding to Aran's arm. "But on the other hand, the Goddess created this world for us to live in, and we created all these wars and chaos… I can understand she would want to give us a punishment. But I can't say I agree her punishment is fair, as she is punishing a whole world filled with good only for a few evil ones."
"I see." Aran responded.
"So… I guess that I don't see this as a fight, but more of a… peace talk. I have faith we can convince Goddess Ashera without anyone else having to suffer. Do you understand what I mean?"
"Trust me, Laura. I completely understand what you're saying." Aran smiled. "In fact, I hope it gets solved like that as well. I've always agreed that if something can be solved through words rather than force, it should be."
"Thanks, Aran." Laura finally looked at Aran in the eyes and smiled. "It's great having such a good friend by my side. I feel so safe and confident near you."
"Yeah, about that…" Aran's voice suddenly turned very serious.
"About what?" Laura sounded perplexed.
"About our friendship."
"Our friendship?" Laura was even more confused. "Aran, you and I are best friends, we'll always be best friends. Nothing in the world could change that."
"I know. I don't want to lose that either, but…"
"Can't it be more than that?" Aran asked, sounding sort of impatient.
"More? You mean…?" Laura was suddenly hit with the truth as she let go Aran's arm. "Aran, what are you saying, exactly?"
"I'm saying… dammit, I just can't hold this any longer." Aran shook his head, then looked at Laura. "Laura, I haven't said anything because of respect towards your beliefs. I know you've vowed yourself faithful to the Goddess, I know you made your vow of chastity and promised never to love anyone but the Goddess…"
"Aran…" Laura said with a mildly scared tone. "Aran, please don't…"
"But I can't keep this inside myself anymore! I… I love you, Laura!"
Laura gasped and covered her mouth with her hand. She didn't say anything else.
"I love everything about you, Laura! Your kindness, your generosity, your friendly company… your eyes, your face, your voice, your hair… everything!" Aran couldn't stop now, he was letting it all out. "Every time in the battlefield, when you're healing me… I just can't stop looking at you. When you call me out for help, it's like nothing else matters and I just rush to protect you. The way we support each other is so… perfect. I… I just can't hide my feelings any longer. I love you, Laura."
"Aran…" Laura lowered her face, it seemed she was about to cry. "Don't do this to me, Aran, please…"
"But it's the truth. Nothing but the truth." Aran was calmer, but still serious. "Who knows if we'll come out of this battle. It may be our last day together, so I just had to tell you this."
"Laura, please… you know I'd never do anything to hurt you, but-"
"ARAN, I SAID STOP!"
Laura's last scream echoed all through the room, causing everyone else to turn their faces to them, but neither Laura nor Aran seemed to notice that. Aran looked directly at Laura, she seemed to be angry and sad at the same time, and Aran had never seen her like this before.
"Please… don't say anything. I don't want to hear it… please…"
"It doesn't matter what our feelings are." Laura was now crying real tears, and she wasn't looking at Aran. "It doesn't matter, because nothing can happen between you and me, or between me and anyone… please, Aran, don't go on with this… please…"
"Just… don't talk to me! Stay away from me!" Laura turned around and ran to the opposite side of the immense room until she disappeared behind a wall.
"Laura, wait!" But Aran's scream was in vain. He lowered his face and slapped himself, as if he had done something really stupid.
"What was that all about?"
Aran looked up. It was Sothe who just spoke, and next to him were Micaiah and Ike.
"Oh… that…" It took a while for Aran to find the right words. "I think… I think I said something I shouldn't have…"
"Well, it would be a good idea to try to fix this situation." Ike said. "A very important battle is coming up, and we'll need the help of both of you."
"I know, it's just… she doesn't want to talk to me…" Aran responded. "And I know her too well, it's hard for Laura to focus when she's worried."
"Well, that's no good." Ike said. "She's very valuable on the field, and I definitely don't want her to sit this one out."
There were a few seconds of silence, until Micaiah finally spoke. "Aran, would you let me go talk to her?"
"Emm… really? You would do that?" Aran said.
"Of course. Laura is a very good friend of mine, and I think I can help her out. She just needs to hear something from a superior." Micaiah said, very confident of her words. "Now if you'll excuse me."
Micaiah turned around and walked until she disappeared behind the same wall Laura went through a couple of minutes earlier.
"Mmm… I wonder what Micaiah is going to tell her." Sothe said as he watched Micaiah go.
"Sothe, I don't think that she meant herself when she said 'Superior'" Ike said.
"Oh! You mean, she…?"
"Yeah. Laura is a very strong believer, right? So I'm sure that talking to an actual Goddess might help her."
"Well, for Laura's sake, and everyone else's, I hope she knows what she's doing." Aran said, letting a sigh as he finished talking.
In a lonely room in the Tower of Guidance, Laura was clutching to her staff and crying her eyes out. Aran's words were still ringing in her mind, not being able to forget them. She was pained by the idea of not being able to return those feelings, regardless of what she thought. But it was the path she chose, and she knew there would be sacrifices, this being one of the most painful ones.
Laura turned around and saw Micaiah. She quickly wiped her tears out of her eyes and tried to sound calmer. "Oh… hello, Micaiah. Is there something I can do for you? You want us to practice with a Light spell?"
"Laura, please." Micaiah said with a compassionate tone. "Don't try to hide from me. I know something is making you suffer."
Laura turned her face around and looked down. She knew she couldn't lie to Micaiah, not to her, of all people.
"So why don't we have a talk? All three of us?" Micaiah said as she closed her eyes.
"Huh? All three?" Laura asked, confused. "I don't see anyone else here?"
Micaiah opened her eyes once again. This time, however, instead of the Micaiah's golden yellow, they were colored a very strong red.
"Well, all three of us are here now." It was Yune, the Goddess of Chaos, the one who spoke.
"Wait, you're… Ah!" Laura gasped, and was in a shocked silence for a few seconds. "Goddess Yune!"
Laura immediately kneeled as a sign of respect, but Yune held her by the shoulders and motioned her to stand.
"Please, don't do that for me." Yune said, with a voice a bit more playful than Micaiah's. "I don't like when people stand on ceremony for me. It's really not necessary."
"But- but you're a Goddess! Someone of your authority deserves all the respect she can get!" Laura insisted on kneeling, but Yune kept getting her to stand.
"Hey, I just want to have a friendly talk with you. Is that too much of a problem?" Yune said, as Laura finally simmered down. "Okay, Micaiah tells me something is troubling you. What is it?"
"Well…" Laura felt somehow embarrassed. "It's such a small problem for a Goddess like you… I don't want to bother you with it."
"Not at all!" Yune said, smiling. "If it's something I can help you with, I'd love to listen to it! It's a Goddess' duty to help those in need!"
"Well… it's…" Laura still felt embarrassed. "It has something to do with my best friend. I mean Aran."
"Oh, I remember him. Micaiah told me all about her friends." Yune said. "What happened, you two got in a fight?"
"Y- Yeah, we did."
"And why was that?"
"Well, he told me he was… in love with me." It took Laura some time to mutter the last four words.
"Really? That's so sweet!" Yune seemed quite happy at first, but then she turned more serious. "Wait, could this be that you don't love him back? Is that why you fought?"
"It's not that, exactly. It's because… you know… I'm a priestess."
"Okay, so you're a Priestess." Yune was the one confused now. "What does that mean?"
"You know… we Priestesses sworn ourselves faithful to only love the Goddess, and that we can't love anyone else…"
"Okay, okay, wait." Yune held her arms high motioning Laura to stop. She sounded real serious now. Almost angry. "Where did you get that idea?"
"Well, we were taught the teachings of the Goddess, and they said that all those who want to be part of Ashera's most faithful, you had to make some sacrifices, such as a vow of chastity…"
"Wait, wait, wait, wait… a bow of CHASTITY?" Yune sounded like she almost couldn't believe it. "Oh my… what has this world come to?"
"What?" Laura sounded almost scared.
"First I hear an entire nation gets destroyed and its race almost entirely wiped out. Then I hear those who are born of Laguz and Beorc are abominations meant to be hated. And now I hear that those who are supposed to love the Goddess the most can't love anyone else!" Yune was moving her arms around as she screamed to the ceiling. "Are you people seriously trying to make Ashera angry?"
"But- but I…" Laura simply couldn't form any words.
"Let me tell you something. Neither me nor Ashera would ever, EVER, want you to give up on love just so you can call yourself part of her family." Yune pointed directly at Laura's face. "In fact, for all this you're doing, Ashera probably hates you."
Laura felt as if a whole flock of arrows pierced through her heart. Everything, every little thing she has been taught had been wrong. Instead of proving herself worthwhile to Ashera, all she has done these years was to distant herself from the Goddess she loves so much. Laura dropped to her knees, both hands clasping her face.
"This… this can't be… everything I've believed for all these years… it's all meaningless… I've done nothing but… but…" Laura's tears were dropping to the floor almost making a puddle. The shocking bit of news was something she couldn't handle, and she couldn't even justify her actions, after all, it was an actual Goddess who told her she was wrong. Laura couldn't even look at Yune in the face, all she could was cry while facing the floor.
"Hey… hey, calm down." Yune kneeled next to Laura and holding her by the arms, she managed to get her to stand. "I suppose this wasn't really your fault. After all, it's what you were taught, and you thought it was the right thing all along…"
However, Laura still wasn't looking at Yune. She couldn't bring herself to stop crying.
"Hey, I want you to look at me." Yune grabbed Laura's face by the chin and gently motioned it so they could look in the eyes. "Listen to me very carefully. If you want to dedicate your life to serve the Goddess, that's good. We really appreciate that. But we never, EVER, want you to do that at the expense of you being with the person you love. Above everything else, you are a woman. You can love a man. You can get married. You can have children. All of those are beautiful things. Things no person in the world should be deprived of. You understand what I'm saying?"
Laura nodded slowly, and the response came out in a whisper. "Y-yes."
"Now." Yune certainly sounded calmer by now. "It would make me and Ashera very happy if you're happy too. So I want you to promise me, that you won't let your love for the Goddess interfere with your life as a woman. There's absolutely nothing wrong with having both. You don't have to sacrifice anything. You got that?"
Laura cleaned her tears. "Yes." She sounded more confident and calmer now.
"Good. So it's a promise." Yune reached out and hugged Laura, and Laura hugged her back. "It was nice talking to you."
"Th-thank you." Was all Laura could say.
"No problem. Call me anytime you need help."
By the time the hug broke, Yune's eyes had changed once again. They had reverted to Micaiah's golden yellow.
"So, how do you feel?" Micaiah asked.
"Still a little shocked." Laura answered.
"I can understand that." Micaiah said. "One never expects to find out these things, I guess."
There were a few seconds of silence before Micaiah talked again.
"So, what are you going to do?"
"I'm… still a little confused. I know I promised Yune that I would be happy, but…"
"Laura, there's only one question here you need to ask yourself." Micaiah put her hand on Laura's shoulder. "How do you feel about Aran?"
"I… I…" It took quite a while for Laura to say the right words, but in the end she finally managed to get them out. "I love Aran. I love him so much…"
Laura dropped her face on Micaiah's shoulder, crying tears of joy as Micaiah hugged her back.
"I love him with all my heart… I want to be with him, I want to marry him, I want to have children with him…" Laura's words kept coming out naturally, along with her tears. "I want us to live together, to grow old together, to spend the rest of our lives together…"
After a while, Micaiah broke the hug and looked directly at Laura. "And tell me, is there any reason why the two of you shouldn't be together?"
"I guess… no, no there isn't." Laura said as she wiped out her last tears.
"Good. Then you know what to do."
"Yes I do." Laura held Micaiah's hands. "And Micaiah… thank you. Thank you so much."
Micaiah simply smiled. "That's what friends are for."
"They've been there for quite a while already, don't you think?" Sothe said, looking at the wall Micaiah went around a few minutes back.
"I suppose these things can take a while." Ike said. "But I believe Micaiah knows what she's doing."
"Yeah, I believe so too, I'm just curious what could they be talking about." Sothe continued.
"Damn…" this time it was Aran who spoke, with a clear tone of frustration. "I probably shouldn't have said anything. As if things weren't bad enough, I just had to make matters worse."
"Well, I guess it's something that couldn't be helped." Ike approached Aran. "Since this could be the last battle of our lives, I presume you wanted to tell her how you feel, right?"
"Yeah, that's pretty much it." Aran answered.
"Well, I can't say that I know much about those things, and I can't say I know you or Laura enough to understand how you fell for each other, but I can tell you this." Ike continued. "I've seen the two of you on the battlefield and I have to say it's very good to have you on our army. You're a great soldier and you do a perfect job on the frontlines, and Laura has helped us incredibly as a healer. If it hadn't been for the two of you, we probably wouldn't have won these battles, or at least we would have had several casualties."
"Wow, Commander… I…" Aran felt quite surprised by Ike's words. "Thank you, I really appreciate that."
"It's the truth." Ike answered simply. "I just hope both of you stay like that for the final battle."
"Yes… that's what I hope as well."
"Hey, here they come!" Sothe interrupted, causing the other two to look in Sothe's direction.
Indeed, Micaiah and Laura were walking back. Aran walked towards Laura, hoping to talk to her.
But before Aran could continue, Laura looked at Ike. "Commander…"
"Yes, Laura. What is it?" Ike responded.
"Is there still time before we go to our next battle?"
"Yes. Everybody still needs to rest. Probably about an hour."
"Aran and I need to talk about something important. In private." Laura seemed very serious of her words. "Is it a problem if I spend this remaining time doing so?"
"Not at all." Ike said. "Everyone's been healed so your work is done for now. Just make sure both of you are ready for battle."
"Thank you. And we will." Laura then looked at Aran. "Aran. Shall we?"
"Oh. Sure." Aran said.
Laura turned to leave to the same spot her and Micaiah came from earlier. Aran took a glance at Micaiah, who smiled and gestured him to follow her. Aran did so.
"Looks like things went well back there." Sothe said.
"I feel…" Micaiah said. "The two of them are going to be very happy together."
Aran and Laura were completely alone, in the same place Laura talked to Micaiah and Yune earlier. Aran was looking at Laura, but she had her back turned to him.
"Laura… are you all right?"
"I'm sorry… I'm so sorry…" Laura turned and looked at Aran. She was crying. "Please forgive me… I…"
"Hey… hey, no." Aran took a couple of steps forward and hugged Laura. "Don't apologize, I shouldn't have said those things. I should be apologizing."
"No, Aran. It was me who was wrong. I've been wrong my entire life. I've devoted my life to make the Goddess happy but… I was wrong."
"What- What do you mean?"
"I've just learned that… what the Goddess loves the most is seeing her people happy. And if a person is happy by spending her life with the one she loves the most, then the Goddess is happy too."
"You… are you saying…"
"Yes, Aran." Laura broke the hug and looked at Aran in the eyes. "I love you, Aran. I want us to spend our lives together. You're my soul mate. My best friend. The one I care for the most. The one I want to have a family with."
Aran couldn't respond right away. He seemed in shock at Laura's words.
For a while, they both just looked at each other, until finally, Aran embraced her, in the most passionate embrace Laura ever felt. After a while, they broke the hug, and Aran gently held Laura's face with both his hands. He brought Laura's face close to his, until they finally kissed. They stood there for several seconds, in complete silence, with no one disturbing them. When they separated again, they looked at each other.
"How did that feel?" Aran asked her as he smiled.
"Beautiful." Was Laura's simple, yet perfect answer.
They embraced once again, and left it like that for several minutes. Neither of them wanted to think of the upcoming battle, or anything else that didn't involve the two of them. At that moment, all that mattered was each other, and they both hoped, with all their hearts, that they could still be like that once the day was over.
A/N: Well, if you made it to this point, thanks a lot for reading. I appreciate all forms of constructive criticism so tell me what you think on the reviews.
Fire Emblem and all of their characters are Copyrighted © Nintendo/Intelligent Systems