A/N: This is just a short piece originally written as chapter 2 of my collection of oneshots ('The Thread Of Moments), but I decided that it worked better as the first of a separate two-parter. The events in it take place during Chapitres 130 to 132. The second part (which will be up in the next few days) take place mostly in Infinity (and is about a thousand words longer than this one).
Anyway, please enjoy!
Fai had avoided moving since he had lost his eye. Instead, he had become a deadweight; he had heard that Kurogane had carried him around while they were in the reservoir, and even once he had woken and popped back up with a quiet "Good morning, Kurogane" he had only been told to stay still and not move.
When, finally, Fai did stand up, driven by the emotions he felt when he heard Sakura had been sent into the wilderness alone – anger, confusion, and most of all guilt, guilt that he had been so useless – he had to pause for a few moments, squinting up ahead, as he realised that his vision had changed. It was only subtle, images now appearing almost two dimensional, something that only now became obvious. Mokona watched nervously as he shook his head and opened his eye again, running his fingers over the soft fabric of his eyepatch. In the distance, outside, he could see the real Syaoran having a discussion with Kurogane; Syaoran was no longer wearing the eyepatch he had appeared with, which explained where his had come from. Fai paused for a few more moments, appreciating the actions of the boy he had never met but thought he knew well.
"Fai, are you okay?" Mokona asked, clearly concerned, and Fai sighed.
"No, Mokona, I don't think I am, or will be for a while. But that's fine; I'm more concerned about Sakura's welfare right now." He reached one hand out to pick Mokona up, then pulled it back sharply, deciding to talk to Syaoran and Kurogane alone.
It wasn't anything like a long walk, less than ten metres from the stone slab he had been laid to rest on to where the other two were talking, looking out across the wasted landscape. But he had to move slowly, and carefully, because of the fragments of rock strewn across the floor. He couldn't properly judge where they were, or how far away they were, and he stumbled across stones several times as he made his way across. He had never had the best eyesight in the first place; this was going to make life difficult, obviously. Fai started to wonder - would he still be able to fight? Perhaps, he allowed himself to wonder, he could now fight like the vampires in the reservoir, with long, vicious nails. But pondering his new physiology could come later.
They hadn't seen him approaching, or perhaps they had granted him the grace of ignoring his new-found clumsiness.
"Why did you send Sakura alone to pay the price?"
There was surprise on Syaoran's face, but not on Kurogane's. Of course not on Kurogane's.
When Sakura appeared, staggering over the ruins, the pain and confusion vanished. He forgot about his eye, his vision, everything, and ran. He didn't notice, but for a few moments the awkwardness vanished as he clutched her, listened to her whispers, and wept.