Zell Dincht sat on his bed. The utter silence of the room seemed to echo in his ears, drawing him into a black whirlpool of... Of what? He didn't know. He shifted his weight and looked down at his hands. Normal hands. Nothing special or distinguishing, except for the myriad of little jagged white scars, covering his wrists. Marks of failure. Marks that belonged on his hands. Clumsy hands. The hands that killed Trabia Garden.

He stopped and took a deep breath. No, no. Not down that road again. Yet, inexorably, his thoughts were drawn again and again to that dark, dark day. The more he thought about it, the worse things looked, until he was so mired in despair he just wanted to end it all. God, he wanted to die. Didn't he?

He wasn't sure of anything right now. Nothing seemed to matter, yet at the same time he thought of his friends. Would they be okay without him there? He smiled bitterly. They would be better without him there to fuck it up again.

Ponderously, he got to his feet and walked over to his closet. Reaching behind his clothes, he pulled out a black, leather case. He sat back down on his bed, and opened the squeaking lid. Inside lay a .44 Magnum. Six-round chamber, six shots. Cleaned, maintained. Shiny, it looked almost new. How could this piece of metal hurt someone?

He knew that simple words could hurt someone.

He picked it up, looking at it. The single lamp on his dresser reflected Then he lifted it and placed it to his head. Will it hurt? No, this was the end of pain. Or was it? It didn't matter now. Pain was not temporal. This relief would be eternal. His finger tightened on the trigger, a sudden doubt struck him.

A single shot rang out.

Then the silence returned.

Squall looked at the broken body before him. The stench of blood filled the room with its coppery tang. It might have been the bottom of the ocean for how dark it was. Squall didn't want to see the hole. He could stand the legs, chest, arms. But not the wound itself.

He started to laugh. He started to cry. The pain became overwhelming, and he crashed to the ground. He gritted his teeth against the almost physical pain. The irony stuck him with a solid blow, destroying the last of his composure. Ultimecia couldn't kill us. But we can kill ourselves.

How could he tell the others? It was his fault. All his. The times he turned Zell away, his silence, his abuse of the friendship Zell had so selflessly offered. He had failed as a commander.

He had failed as a friend.

He would live though, for Rinoa. For the others. And most of all for Zell.

Author's Notes (Added 1\29\07): This rather abominable 'work' remains on this website due entirely to two reasons- the odd number of reviews it has received, and its status as the first true piece of fanfiction I ever wrote. The writing is laughable, the length is unforgivable, and the entire concept is shamelessly pirated from Sergeant Phoenix's 'One Day At A Time'. I must have been thirteen when I typed it out in what must have been twenty seconds back in the winter of 2000. What's even more saddening is the fact that originally Squall's part wasn't even in the first version of this 'story'. That would have put it at what, a whopping one hundred words? Somebody call a publisher!

I like how I tacked that line onto the end of Squall's section there, just to make sure nobody thought he was going to kill himself too. I'm so glad he's decided to live- for Rinoa, of course. Oh, and some others. But most of all, for Zell, even though Zell is dead. That's damn big of him, isn't it?

I'd like to go back in time and beat the shit outta my little thirteen year old punk self for posting this crap.

What's depressing is the realization that in ten years, I'll be thinking the same thing about what I'm writing now.

-Caleb Nova