I do not own Final Fantasy X in any shape or form.
I totally blame snappleducated for this. She lent me this game sometime in March, and I finally got around to playing it about a week ago. Now, a week later, I am totally in love with this game and addicted to this pairing. Whoops?
Unfortunately, I love happy endings, and this pairing doesn't really lend themselves to it. So, this is my attempt at giving them one. This pretty much follows the canon, except for one little detail that I added. So yeah, Auron's still an Unsent. First time writing for these characters or this fandom, so here's to hoping that I didn't screw it up.
She cries and cries and cries like she hasn't since she was a little girl watching her mama die. The tears run hot down her cheeks and mingle with the sand and grit beneath, hot and heavy and raw.
Yunie, she thinks, irrationally, the thought rising unbidden above the heat and pain and tears. I need to save Yunie.
I have to.
When she finally comes home, Cid scowls and lectures, but she can see his relief in the glint of his eyes and the tilt of his frown. With Brother it's less obvious, but she can tell by the way he doesn't look at her, eyes averted and hands twisted the same way they were when he accidently struck her down with thunder.
Still, she's Home and that's all that matters, Home and saving Yunie, and so she leaves almost as soon as she arrives despite Cid's protests. Home is safe and Yunie is not, and she remembers the promise she made, laying there in the sand, and won't, can't let herself forget.
She'll save Yunie, no matter what the cost.
When kidnapping her doesn't work (and if she's honest with herself, she never really thought it would, because Yunie's half Al Bhed and Al Bhed never give up) she moves on to her next plan, the one that she never told Cid and Brother because she knows that they wouldn't understand.
"I want to be your guardian."
She's tested right away— not by battle or fiends, but by the one-eyed gaze of the strongest, the most skilled of all Yunie's guardians. And when she looks up at him she somehow wants to trust him, wants to believe in him, in this Legendary Guardian even as she reminds herself that he's just pushing them towards Yunie's doom.
Somehow, facing her first fiend as Yunie's guardian doesn't seem as difficult.
She hates hates hates every second they spend in Guadosalam. She hates Seymour, with his silk-covered claws and bittersweet promises. She hates the way his eyes darken when he looks at Yunie and how his fingers curl possessively around her wrist and most of all, she hates how he offers Yunie a chance to save herself.
She won't let Yunie die. She refuses to let her die. And is marrying Seymour will save Yunie, it's a good thing, right? She can't help but hate him anyways, because she knows deep down that marrying him will just be another kind of death for Yunie and she cannot allow that.
She hates the Farplane too, though maybe not as much as she hates Seymour. She always has. She hates its false promises, how it tricks you with warmth and light and a million other things she desperately wants but knows she cannot have.
So she lets Yunie go on ahead, her other guardians following her one by one and its alright, because they'll protect her when she can't, until it's just her and him, the Legendary Guardian. Auron. She polishes her claw as she waits, sharpens and readies it as she watches, an eye always on him as she silently wonders what keeps him from entering.
He meets her gaze steadily, and neither look away until Yunie returns.
The thunder booms and the lightning crackles down the sky and she's shaking shaking shaking, crying out in her fear.
She sees scales swimming towards her when she closes her eyes, and her body tingles with the phantom of remembered pain, and she wants nothing more then to run run run far away from here.
But he looks at her, all red and dark, seeing through her lies. And with a single sentence he cuts through them and she remembers her resolve, anger and determination quickening through her veins. She stands up tall, even when the crash of thunder sends her quavering in her boots.
But each strike of lightning, each crash of thunder weakens that resolve, watering down her blood with an acrid fear, and she can swear that she feels the sand against her cheeks, mingling with burning tears.
But he pushes her, cajoles her until her anger and blood runs hot and quick, until she's stomping after him, a scowl on her face and a reminder burned into her heart, burned with each strike. Save Yunie. Nothing else matters.
Still, she thinks she feels something else burning through her with each beat of her heart when she sees him look at her with something like approval in his eyes.
She never knew that snow could burn, that the ice can leave her as scorched as the sands of her desert home. There are many things she doesn't know, and she thinks on them instead of how Yunie looked holding the dying Maester in her arms or how Wakka had yelled and glared at her so hatefully or how Yunie's eyes looked so hopeless and defeated when Seymour stepped forward or how her heart went thump-thump when Auron's arms held on to her waist as they raced through the snow.
Later, maybe, she'll think on some of these things and what they mean, carefully tucking away the rest in the pockets of her mind where no one will see. But for now, she'll sit and watch and feel the burn of the snow against her legs.
Home and saving Yunie is all that matters, she once told herself, and now Yunie is all that she has left. She doesn't cry, though she thinks she might— all her tears are gone now, all used up on the day she laid there in the sand, heat and pain and tears pouring down.
I have to save Yunie, she thinks, almost desperately as she sits in a corner, sharpening her claw. I've got to save her, she thinks, and she pretends that she doesn't notice him watching her or the heaviness of her heart.
It's a day for lovers, she thinks as she doesn't watch Tidus and Yunie, dancing in the lake. She wonders and hopes and dreams, dreams for a world where Yunie is safe and summoners don't have to die for nothing. She hopes for the day where Yunie will turn to her and say, "I give up." She dreams of a world without Sin.
She meets his eyes, then, this Legendary Guardian— no, just Auron, she softly corrects herself— who is pushing Yunie even closer to her death, pushing her farther and farther from her dream of a world where everyone can be safe and no one dies for nothing and she wonders why she can't bring herself to hate him.
The Calm Lands are a lie. The wind rustles through the grass and the sun shines softly over them and there's the sweet scent of flowers in the air, all trying to lull them into thinking that they're safe, that the world is at peace and it's alright. It whispers promises as false as those of the Farplane, except it's somehow worse because this land is nurtured and raised by the blood of a thousand years worth of summoners and she cannot forgive it that.
She hates and loves it, hates what it stands for and loves the way Yunie smiles when she looks at Tidus and, how, just for a little while, she forgets her worries and what's ahead. She hates the scars of battle carved into the stone and soil, and loves watching Yunie and Tidus race each other on the backs of chocobos, their eyes and lips filled with promises as the wind blows through their hair. She hates the blood-soaked grass and loves the nights around the campfire, when everything is soft and gentle and at peace.
And she hatesloves the way Auron glances at her through the flames, just a split second blink and you'll miss it kind of glance, and she hatesloves the way her cheeks flush and her heart thumps and how, just for a moment, she forgets all about saving Yunie.
Most of all, she hatesloves the way she doesn't want these days to ever end.
Things collide on Mount Gagazet, under the brightness of the stars and the burn of the snow. All are asleep when she approaches him, all are asleep when she entwines her fingers in his hair, and he knows and she knows that this is stupid and that it will only hurt in the end whether it's him or her. But she's tired of being strong, tired of worrying and watching and for just a moment, she wants to just give in, just wants to burnburnburn until there's nothing left, only her, burning in the snow.
And during the daylight hours she's the perfect guardian, always watching, always planning and thinking and trying to save Yunie. Her eyes are all for Yunie and they never stray, and she vows fiercely to herself that she'll think of something, anything to save her and oh she's just so very tired but she will save Yunie, no matter what it takes
So she kisses him and he kisses her and she buries her face in his neck, hoping that she won't regret this.
Zanarkand is dead and desolate and terrible but she can't help but love it, because it is there her hope burns the brightest, it is there she feels so alive that it hurts. It is there Yunie turns her back on a thousand years of death, it is there where they save all the summoners yet to come. And it is there she finally understands why he was always pushing pushing pushing Yunie, not to death, but to life. And even if Sin is still alive, she laughs and twirls and knows that finally, finally, she can save Yunie. Finally, she can keep her promise.
And she laughs and twirls and burns with joy.
She's fixing her speeder when the fiend comes. There's no urgent reason for her to be out there in the sands of the desert, she just wants to feel the heat of the sun and the wind racing by and so she goes. It comes from behind, and she doesn't see it until right before it strikes, and blood is pouring down as she attacks and fights and claws it. She fights and fights and fights, fights until it dissolves into a mass of pyreflies that flutter into the air. no. I can't. I have to save Yunie.
And blood is pouring pouring pouring as she falls into the sand, and she cries cries cries from the pain, blood and tears mixing with the sand and heat. And she thinks,
I can't die.
The night before they fight Sin, they camp out in the Calm Lands like they did in those few short weeks of peace. She crawls into Auron's coat that night, holding on to him like he's the one who will disappear. And she doesn't let him see the tears streaking down her face, and she thought she was all out of tears but she was wrong and she's so so sorry and she wishes that she was strong enough to stay away but she isn't and she should have but she didn't.
Her kisses are desperate, and she knows that he thinks that she's just scared of the coming battle, knows that he thinks that one day this thing they have will end because he thinks she'll finds someone new, and she can't bring herself to tell him the truth because she loves him so much that it burns, and she's so so sorry, sorry that all she can do is stay with him until morning comes, sorry that he doesn't know that tomorrow she will have to say goodbye.