A/N: I don't know what this thing is. But because my immune system has gone to Vancouver to watch the Olympics rather than stay here and keep me from getting sick, I wrote this weird thing. Because anyone who has read any significant amount of my work knows that I get prolific went I get sick, and I write my weirdest stuff when under the influence of antihistamines and menthol drops. So I blame that. So this one is sort of mundane and everyday, I think, but then again, not really. Format and such are inspired by Lucy Maud Montgomery, author of Anne of Green Gables, who has a short story told entirely via letters written by Anne to her beau. (I haven't read the books in years, so I don't remember his name.) This short story was found either in Chronicles of Avonlea or Further Chroncles of Avonlea, but I can't remember which, because like I said, I haven't read any of her books in years. Oh, and I love Axel. Remember that. Also, a bit of language in this one, but the emotion of the situation sort of called for it.
Boring title, I know. Sokai, futurefic-ish. Oneshot.
Letters from Home
To My Dearest,
The days here are long and the nights here are longer.
The old insomnia has set in again, as it always does when you are away for long periods of time, and it hurts now more than ever because I have grown accustomed to rolling over in the middle of the night and seeing you lying next to me, rather than the sight of the empty space where you usually lay. Still, your pillow still smells like you, and if I roll over and burrow into your spot and wrap myself tightly enough in the blankets, then I can almost convince myself that you're holding me as I fall asleep.
Right now the insomnia is especially annoying because your mother has taken to calling me every morning demanding to know if I got enough sleep.
Not that I can blame her, she's just worried. After all, I now have good reason to get a good night's sleep. Because, well, that's what we need to talk about. I would have liked to have told you before you left, but I wasn't really sure yet, and I didn't see any reason to get your hopes up, or to get you worried without any sort of confirmation.
But see, the exact reason why I can't tell you in person is the same reason why I chose to stay behind in the first place.
You're confused by now, aren't you, love? I'm sorry.
But basically, well, it wouldn't be safe for me to come with you under the present circumstances, and I couldn't risk going with you and Riku and something happening. And I certainly couldn't have found out for sure if I did come with you.
I know I must have worried you anyway, though. I saw that look in your eyes; you noticed how uncharacteristic it was that I, who adamantly refused to be left behind while you swanned off to save the worlds, should choose to stay behind without a clear explanation as to why.
But dear, well, I had it all planned out how I was going to tell you, and then the test results got delayed, and all of this had to happen and well…
I don't know. Maybe I should just say it. (And by the way, dear, you're right. I suck at writing letters.)
Sora…we're going to have a baby.
I must say, your reaction was not at all what I was expecting. I mean, I expected that you were going to be excited, but to go galloping through downtown Radiant Garden telling anyone that would listen that you were "gonna be a daddy" does seem a bit much. I mean, really, Sora? I wouldn't believe that even you would make such a fool of yourself if Riku hadn't written to tell me about it.
I mean, love, did you really? Well, no need for me to worry about any hesitation on your part.
But, really, an excited rampage through downtown? Sorry I wasn't there to see that.
Actually, no I'm not. Because then I would've had to admit that I'm married to the rampaging lunatic.
You're pouting at the paper, right now, aren't you? Stop it; you know I love you, even if you are a bit crazy. I knew what I was getting into when I said my vows.
Anyway, I'm already feeling like a pregnant wreck. Your mother has been a great help, though. But there is only so much she can do, and the poor wonderful woman has been running herself ragged as it is.
I hate to think you won't be here for most of this. I mean, you've guaranteed me that you'll be back before our baby (our baby!!!) is born, and from yours and Riku's reports on the situation at hand, I have no reason to doubt that. But what about all the little things? The ultrasounds, fixing up the nursery, helping me through all these odd cravings, holding my hair when I'm succumbing to morning sickness…you're missing all of that! For now, it's mostly your mother helping me out, like I said. (Dear, I think we've found our number one baby-sitter.)
Anyway, still no word on the gender. So, what do you think as far as baby names? Is it a bit early to be thinking about baby names? I have a few ideas, but I wanted to know what you thought.
And one last thing; are you stealing Merlin's stationary again?
Write back soon, love.
My dearest Sora,
I was quite relieved to hear you say that you don't really care what we name our baby and that you are quite content to leave the naming up to me.
Because I don't care if he was Roxas's best friend, I am NOT naming my child after Axel.
We've been through this before, Sora; yes, he was your other's best friend, yes, he basically sacrificed his life to save you, and yes, he did in a roundabout way help us all out, but I don't have to like him and we've been through all the reasons why.
The man kidnapped me, Sora; do you really think I want to give his name to my baby?
And, he was a jerk to Naminé.
And, pretty much everything he did, even what he did to help us, was to his own end.
So my final answer is no. And Naminé is backing me up on this.
However, you make a point in that he did have his good moments, and therefore he probably was a decent human being at one point in time, so I will consider Lea. I'm not making any promises, but I will consider it.
As to your other suggestions, I have to say I like the name Ventus, and it seems like a nice sentiment, but dear, we don't even know that much about him. If we are going to give this child a name that means something, I'd lean closer to Lea. But I'll think about it, I suppose.
But that's a definite 'NO' to Axel.
What's next? Suggesting we name her 'Larxene' if it's a girl?
Speaking of which, you want a boy, and there's no point in hiding it. You do. Yes, I know what you said. "I'll love it no matter what it is, so what's the point? I'm not hoping for either outcome, honest." And then you proceed to list several boys' names for a potential son? With, what, two possible names for a girl tacked onto the end?
There's no shame in it, love. I want a daughter. It's fairly natural. You want someone to teach how to spar and play blitzball, and I want a little girl whose hair I can play with.
But enough about that. You've given me executive rights to the name of my baby, seeing as I'm the one carrying the thing, and I intend to exercise that right.
New subject. Where on earth are you getting the stationary from? It's a never-ending fountain of amusement for me, so I'm not complaining, but my goodness. I've got a collection forming of eccentric stationary just from your letters.
I think the stuff from Atlantica is my favorite. Although, I'm not quite sure what it is. Coral? Can you make paper out of coral? Coral parchment? I don't know. But it was cool, whatever it was. And what did you write it with? It almost looks like blood. (It's not, is it? Oh my God, it's fish blood, isn't it?)
I really want you to come home and visit, love. Otherwise I'm going to have to have an affair. Which probably won't be very good, because what man wants to do a woman who's knocked up? I mean, I'm not showing very much yet, (I just look like I've gained weight, which frankly just sucks) but I don't look very alluring at the moment. I don't know what practical biological purpose it serves, considering that I'm already pregnant, but my body wants sex, and I've sort of got no one I can have it with, seeing as you are light years away, and I'm sort of bound by the whole 'forsaking all others' part of our vows.
Also, I need to kill you.
Because as much as I want this kid, morning sickness sucks.
Your dearest, forlorn, horny, pregnant wife who for some reason loves you anyway,
My dearest numbskull,
It was a joke, love. I have Naminé's memories. I know that Larxene was a cold-hearted bitch.
Oh yes, go ahead and raise your eyebrows. But I make exceptions when my vocabulary otherwise fails me, and you and I both know that woman can't be described any other way.
And excuse me, but there is no reason to get testy! I'm supposed to be the hormonal one, after all. But I'm not naming my child after Axel. And, well, it doesn't matter, because, well, dear. I found out for certain the sex of our baby.
…Excited? On the edge of your seat? (You better be. I mean, what kind of insensitive jerk doesn't want to know if his baby is going to be a boy or a girl?) Don't you want to know if we'll be painting the walls of the nursery pink or blue? (Metaphorically, actually, because I'm thinking a pale yellow might look wonderful in that room. What do you think?)
Yes, I'm teasing you. But I'm feeling playful today, love. It's just because I'm excited.
Anyway, love, you are going to be the proud daddy of a beautiful baby girl!
Yes! A girl! And I am predictably excited because I will admit, I wanted a girl.
And now I have an excuse not to name my offspring after the man who kidnapped me. So issue solved.
As to what we are going to name our daughter (oh love, doesn't it excite you just to think about that word?) I have a few ideas in mind, one in particular that I think you'll like, but dear, I think I shall keep it to myself for now. I'll tell you when I see you next. It will be more special that way, I think.
Anyway, I have to tell you, my dearest idiot, that your last letter had me laughing solidly for at least ten minutes. It wasn't the contents of the letter that were funny, oh no, just the ordering. I mean, you spent the first half of the letter presenting your arguments as to why we should name our child after Axel, and then the second half was the steamiest love letter you've ever written.
Honestly, you had me blushing after I stopped laughing enough to take it seriously. From arguing to attempting to seduce me via the mail? Dear, you're going to have to re-read that letter when you get home, and I'm sure you'll see that the abrupt switch in tone was nothing short of hilarious.
However, ignoring how inappropriately it was placed in regards to the other contents of your letter, it was a…how to put this…very nicely written love letter, and it deserves an adequate reply……
(Remaining contents omitted)
To my Dearest,
You're a moron. And so is Riku. Please tell him this for me.
That was fourteen years ago. It's time you two stopped arguing about it.
So what if his card was bigger than yours? Might I remind you that you are the one I chose? You are the one who I dated, who I went to prom with. You are the one I married. And for the love of all things Holy, Sora, it's your baby growing in my stomach at the moment.
Let Riku revel in once having given me a bigger Valentine's Day card than you.
Yours had more glitter on it, anyway.
Speaking of decoration, your father and Daddy came by this weekend and painted the nursery. It looks amazing! I went with the loveliest shade of warm, pale yellow for the top half of the walls, and then the bottom, below the molding, is thick stripes of that yellow and this lovely shade of purple. It's so happy and soothing! Oh, I can't wait to show you! And the furniture is supposed to be delivered tomorrow, so if it gets here they are going to come by to put it all together and get everything set up.
Oh, and the decorations! I found the most beautiful wooden letters in purple to match the wall in a lovely font that will hang above the crib, spelling out our daughter's name! (I'm still not telling you yet. If you want to know you'll have to come visit and see for yourself.)
It's all so beautiful; I could stare at that room for hours. As for me, well, I'm not much to stare at anymore. Everyone keeps saying that I don't look like I've gained any weight other than my baby belly, but I still feel like a whale. (In reality I've only gained about six pounds. Oh, shut up!)
I don't think I look like anything other than a beach ball. I'm sending pictures of my belly along with the latest ultrasounds, so your next letter better include some flattery telling me that I make pregnancy sexy, or something. I mean, it'll all be bull, and I know it, but I still want to hear it.
I'm sort of starting to dislike doctor visits. I mean, I love getting to see our baby, but you know love, since you aren't here I mostly have to go by myself, so I get these looks from people. There was one woman who I overheard muttering to her husband about 'teen moms'. Well, it's sort of flattering that she thinks I still look like a teenager, but I've had to get creative making sure my wedding band stays visible and catching the light. I wish I had a sign I could hold up that says, "This kid is LEGIT! I'm married and twenty-two!" (Oh shut up, if I can pass for a teenager, I can pass for 22.)
I mean, come on, if I can get away with it, might as well start lying about my age now. It'll only make it easier to get away with when I get old enough to actually need to lie about my age.
Now, as to your latest love letter…dear, we really must work on your abilities to segue in and out of romantic talk. As it is the switch from normal conversation to romantic conversation is more than a bit jarring.
I don't claim to be an expert at that which is why instead of attempting to finish this letter off with something that will make you want to fly straight back to me, I will just end this letter as is and write you an entirely new letter consisting of nothing but my descriptions of what I would do to you were you currently home with me.
And oh, look at that, I just wrote what would be a perfect transition into love-letter writing.
p.s. See the other piece of paper included in this envelope. The one sealed with a kiss.
Come home. Come home now. I can't do this. I just can't do this. I can't deal with this by myself, okay, I just can't, and it would be cruel of you to think I could. Oh, God, I hope you get this soon. I'm sending it magically rather than by post because for heaven's sake, Sora, I need you.
I really need you. Because I can't deal with this by myself. Your parents and my parents and Selphie and everyone have been wonderfully kind to me but damn it, Sora, I need you.
This just isn't fair. It isn't right, and it isn't fair, and it's just so wrong, and Sora, I can hardly write because I don't want to think about this anymore. I just want you here. Because I can't stop thinking about this.
Haven't we had enough trouble? Hasn't our destiny given us enough obstacles without doing this to us too?
And this isn't how you should find out about this. Not by letter. You should have been here. You should have been here to see it with me because it's too late now and there's no going back and I'm losing my mind here, Sora, so hurry back. Please.
And oh, you should have seen her, Sora. She was so beautiful, and so wonderful, and so small, and so perfect!
Too perfect! Far too perfect.
And maybe that was why…she was just too perfect for this world.
Some force in the universe got jealous, maybe.
She was too perfect. And too early, and too new, and she wasn't ready for this world yet.
One hundred and fourteen minutes. And the irony in that! One hundred and fourteen damn minutes! My little girl, my beautiful little girl. And you should have been there! She was beautiful, Sora. She had your eyes. A bit paler in color, but she was new, and they would have gotten darker. But they were shaped just like yours. And even though she was only seven months along, she had the slightest hint of brown fuzz. She'd have looked so much like you!
They told me something went wrong. Something tore, or something…I don't know. It was all a blur. What does it matter what went wrong? All that matters is that something did, and there was nothing they could do. She was just too weak. And too small and too new and too damn perfect.
I knew you would miss it. They told me she wouldn't make it through the night. I had them take pictures for you. And video. Lots of video. We got lots of close ups of her, and of those beautiful eyes. But God, Sora, you should have been there. You should have met her, and it isn't your fault that you weren't, and I don't blame you one bit, but I need you. And I need you. And I need you. And God, what's wrong with me? I've written that three times already! But, my God, Sora. She was beautiful. And I can't deal with this without you.
And she went so peacefully. She hardly cried. She just looked up at me, and then she fell asleep, and she looked so peaceful and so beautiful and then she just didn't wake up and they told me she wasn't going to and that I needed to let her go and...
I need you here, because that was our baby, Sora. And she was beautiful, and she was perfect, and in two days we're having the funeral, and a ceremony with one hundred and fourteen balloons that we're going to release. One for each precious minute I got to have with her. And if you ever want to see her with your own eyes, Sora, you'll have to be there for that. It'll be our last chance to see her, to hold her, even if she isn't really there…
…And she'll look just precious. Your grandma, bless her, worked all morning making the most beautiful little cotton gown for her to wear, and the softest, loveliest little pillow and blanket to line the coffin and oh, God, what am I writing? I shouldn't be writing these things! My little girl, oh my precious baby girl…
Sora, get back here. Because I can't do this by myself.
And the irony! The damn irony of it all!
I never told you her name, did I? I wanted it to be a surprise, for you, and for Roxas. Naminé and I thought you'd like it. I wanted to tell you in person. But the irony of it all! God, the irony… And I can't help but wonder if maybe if I hadn't…but that's ridiculous. And what does it matter now? It's too late and she's gone and my poor little girl…
And I can't stop thinking about the damn irony.
Because Sora, oh Sora…
…I named her after Xion.
(writing become illegible)
I thought having had you home for a while would help me endure these last few months without you, but it's only made it harder. I miss you, and this house just feels too big and too quiet.
I've locked up the nursery. I can't bear to be in there anymore. I know; that probably surprises you, since all I've done the last few weeks is sit in the rocking chair and stare at that name on the wall. But I can't do it anymore, and I'm not sure if it was helping me cope or not, so I've decided to try and move on.
So, confession time, I suppose. I got into a fight with a woman at work. I walked into the employee lounge in the middle of her complaining to some other people about how it wasn't fair that I had been let off work for the last few weeks after losing our little girl. She thought it was one thing that I'd been given maternity leave, but that woman didn't think I should have been let off to deal with my grief! According to her it was ridiculous to think that anyone could need to mourn a person they'd only known for less than two hours.
Dearest, I couldn't let her say things like that! I don't understand how anyone, especially someone who is a mother herself could fail to understand the love you feel for your child even before they are born! I loved that little girl from the second I knew she was coming, and I had those precious moments to hold her…how could I not be devastated by losing her?
I really should have been fired. I sort of…punched her, after all. It's a good thing my boss likes me, and understands. Turns out his wife has had two miscarriages. I never knew. Maybe I ought to talk to her about all this. I don't know.
I want to move. I want to leave this house. Just pack up and walk out and leave that perfect little nursery the way it is. Let someone else take everything down and paint over it. I just don't want to see that room as anything other than the way it is now. I want to remember it as it is, just as I want to remember my baby girl as she was, looking up at me through those big blue eyes…
Am I being silly? I don't know. But I don't want to be here anymore. I just can't take it anymore.
Come home soon, Sora, dear. I know the universe needs you, but so do I. And well, I'm worried about us. The statistics are scary. Do you know the percentage of couples whose marriages fall apart after losing a child?
I was watching a talk show the other day, and it was all about couples who ended up getting divorced after losing a baby, or losing a child to cancer, and things like that, and it was scary, Sora, because they all talked about how in love they were before they lost their child.
And Sora, I don't want that to happen to us.
I've spent enough time in my life without you, and I've spent enough nights in a bed by myself to know that I don't want the rest of my life to be like that.
Whatever happens, wherever this road takes us, we'll go together. Promise me that. Because I can't deal with this grief without you, and I don't want it to be the thing that tears us apart. All those times in my life that I spent wondering about the future…when I was a kid and didn't know what I wanted to be when I grew up, when we were in high school, and I didn't know what I was going to do about college, and then when I didn't know what I wanted to major in…all those times, the one thing I knew I wanted in my future was you.
Come home soon, because I want you home, love. And I don't ever want to spend a night without you where I didn't have the hope of knowing that you'd be back eventually.
And write me back, dearest, because if I am going to be without you, I never want to be without at least your letters. Because that 'for better or for worse' part in our vows…
Yeah. I meant that.
Always and forever yours,
A/N: So, whatcha think? Swimming in fluff, drowning in angst? Too much? Not enough? Drop me a review and lemme know. Anyone think I should do a sequel in Sora's letters? I think it sort of makes the story work that it's told only in Kairi's letters, but if enough people want it from Sora's side I might do it. Maybe no one wants that. I don't know. Sounds like the sort of thing that people would end up asking me for.