Disclaimer: I do not own the Legend of Sun Knight and make no profit from writing this.
Part 38: Sun
When I walked in through the conference room door only to be greeted with everyone bombarding me with questions and accusations, I'd really thought they'd found us out, like what had happened with Adair. I'd panicked but also felt secretly pleased they knew us so well. I was about to bestow on them the title of the Twelve Holy Tapeworms when they went and pulled that stunt instead!
They didn't even stop there. Judgment and my attempt to logically clear up the misunderstanding only made things worse.
"I wasn't holding my pelvis," I said. And it wasn't even me doing it. It was Lesus because of the stupid trinket! "I was holding my stomach since I'd gotten slashed near there!"
"Stomach, you say?" Earth gasped in fake concern. "Sun, have you gotten pregnant already? Don't you know to use protection?"
"You bastard! I'm a guy!"
"But are you really?"
"Duh! You've seen me without a shirt before!"
"Well, you could just be a really flat girl! It's not like you ever use the public baths, so how would we know if you're a guy or not? Maybe you're hiding something!"
"He probably just has a complex of not having hair down there..." Judgment suddenly murmured. When he realized what he had said, and that he'd said it loudly enough to be heard by everyone, he froze, but all hell had already broken loose.
Amidst everyone's clamor, I stared at Lesus in disbelief. Lesus! This is totally not the right time to bring that up no matter what kind of epiphany you had!
He looked at me apologetically, but that wasn't going to make anyone forget what he'd said!
In the end, I finally shouted, "I get it already, okay? I'm sorry I didn't tell all of you from the start! The truth is, Judgment and I..."
And that was how they forced me to spill everything that had happened in the past few days. Some had on dawning looks of realization as they probably went over all of their interactions with us, trying to determine how much of that had been me and how much of it had been Lesus. Some of the others actually looked a little disappointed, even saying, "What? So that's it? Tsk, how boring... Our theories were so much better."
You try being someone else!
After that, everything returned to normal. Well, normal enough for us. Lesus went back to attending meetings and interrogating criminals. I went back to skipping those meetings and returned to giving people headaches. What wasn't normal was that Judgment could now sometimes be seen using wind magic, and Blaze kept on pestering me for a spar even when I kept on telling him that Lesus was the one who had agreed to it, not me! In the end, I gave in to his earnest looks and took up my sword, gluing it to my hand with holy element. I was proud to say I didn't lose my sword during the fight even though my moves weren't anywhere close to elegant. After the match, Blaze pounded me heartily on the back and shouted, "That was awesome, Sun!"
He'd really made my ears and my back hurt.
Some things actually took getting used to again. Even though we told each other a lot, there were some things that we hadn't told each other. Apparently, Lesus had made friends with the royal knight that had kept following me around after the king's address, whether it was during the short time said friend supported him to the bathroom or whether it was during some other time, I really didn't know. All I knew was that I certainly hadn't warranted the royal knight being so friendly towards me, and now I was stuck with not even knowing the guy's name. All I knew was that his all-purpose handsomeness was still getting on my nerves.
"Good morning, Sun Knight. I hope you are feeling much better now," the man said with a beaming smile. Way too bright! It's practically blinding! "By the way, thank you for the new uniform. You really didn't have to go so far."
New... uniform? Why would I spend money on a man?!
Oh wait... I did buy a present for Lesus... Even if it was his own money that I spent... But this and that are completely different matters! Why would I buy anything for this stranger?
He proudly put his hand on the collar of his red uniform and straightened it for me to see, like he was showing off.
"It looks... flattering..." I said and tried to force a smile on my face. "The God of Light's generosity must be shared with all."
But I still didn't know his name.
"Elijah, good morning," a voice called out.
It was Adair, to the rescue!
My vice-captain approached and "seemed" to notice me, but I was sure he already knew of my presence. "Good morning, Captain."
After saluting me, he turned to Elijah and said, "Elijah, are the clothes to your liking? Captain really wanted me to find you a replacement for the one you lent us. It really helped speed our investigation along. If not for your help, we would have had a much harder time."
As expected of Adair! He was such a smooth talker, and he'd even illuminated the matter for me.
They talked a bit more before Elijah finally seemed to recall that he'd come to fetch me because the prince had summoned me. There was nothing I could do but answer the summons.
My short stint as Judgment had some other repercussions too. From time to time, I would accidentally slip. What I meant was, sometimes, a scowl would come across my face, and if Adair or Lesus were around, they'd immediately say, "You're slipping!"
Like now, Adair alarmingly said, "Captain! Don't forget your elegance!"
Elegance was truly something that had to be equipped. I'd become an expert at it over the years, but the short vacation I'd taken had set me back. I steeled myself and plastered a wide smile back on my face.
It was with such resolve that I met with the prince, who frowned severely upon seeing me and told me to drop the act. He was definitely going to be a tough king to deal with once his coronation happened, but I had hoped that once the fat pig king stepped down, Roland would finally be able to rest in peace.
How wrong I was to think so!
Roland was indeed still around. Our very public play was just that, a play. While it had successfully cleared my name and upped Judgment's intimidation factor even more, it had not satisfied Roland's lingering obsession.
In fact, Roland's lingering obsession had absolutely nothing to do with the king. When I snuck out of the Holy Temple to get on Pink's case about the stupid trinket looking like a heart of all things, I learned that Roland's obsession was that he wanted to be the Sun Knight!
Does this mean everything would have been solved if I'd switched with Roland instead of Lesus?
But thankfully that hadn't happened. I did not want to become a corpse, and who knew what would have happened to us once Roland's lingering obsession was taken care of with the two of us switched?
As I made my way back from the palace, I remembered to equip my smile and elegance once more.
Time to emulate a tortoise, Grisia! I told myself, making sure I was walking at a pace that would not disturb a single fold of my clothes.
It took me an agonizingly long time to reach the bathroom in the Judge's Complex with how slowly I had to walk, and I couldn't even directly appreciate all the beauty around me to occupy my time. I was back to recording from the edges of my vision!
Thankfully, my muscles weren't as sore anymore, so there wasn't anything the other Twelve Holy Knights could mock me for anymore either. Right after the disaster of a meeting, I'd sent Adair to round up all of the paperwork he could find and shove it into Storm's room. Yes, including the paperwork Adair usually helped Storm with!
When I entered the bathroom, Lesus was already inside, back facing the door. I beheld his appearance from behind, from his dark robes to his dark hair to his dark, well, pretty much everything. Black was truly Lesus's color, and I was glad to return it to him. He turned, caught my gaze, and smiled.
You've gotten a lot better at that, Lesus.
His smiles had always been a bit awkward, since he never really allowed himself to smile, so even when he did smile, his smiles looked more terrifying than anything. But this smile was... really warm. It softened his face a lot and made him look much less world-weary. I was pleased to see that the facial masks were already making Lesus's skin look much more fitting for his age.
Then, Lesus moved out of the way of the table he'd been blocking. My eyes lit up. Dessert! Oh how I missed the desserts Judgment always brings after his interrogations!
I handed him the basin and immediately pushed past him to take in the glorious sight.
Usually, Judgment brought me cookies, cupcakes, or other small things, but this time was different. There was blueberry pie sitting right in the center of the table. A whole, entire, fresh, blueberry pie from my favorite store, and I hadn't even had to wheedle Lesus into buying it for me!
I looked up at Lesus. He caught my gaze once more and gestured at the pie. I guess he must've felt somewhat bad that he had been no help at all with clearing up the stupid misunderstanding. Fine, for the sake of the pie, I'll forgive him!
"It's been awhile since you've had pie right? Go on," he urged.
You don't even have to tell me! You don't know how much I'd had to endure, watching you wolf that pie down when I couldn't eat it myself!
I quickly snatched a slice of pie. Although Lesus was back to his incomprehensible self that no longer appreciated the deliciousness of blueberry pie, that didn't mean he wouldn't steal the pie from under my nose and dispose of it or something.
I took a large bite, the sweet, blueberry flavor melting on my tongue. I closed my eyes, savoring the taste. Yes, yes, this was it! Oh, how I missed this!
Lesus was still smiling when I cracked open my eyes. He said, "They really do have amazing pie."
"I always told you so!' I replied.
"Yes, yes, and you were right." Lesus chuckled, his deep voice soothing to my ears.
Wordlessly, I watched Lesus splash water against his face as I ate more pie.
Everything was back to normal.
Even though there had been some snags along the way, bittersweet things I'd rather forget, I was glad that Lesus had been with me every step of the way. And, it had been kind of fun actually, seeing Lesus endure the trials of facial masks and praising the God of Light, not to mention succumbing to the deadly temptation that was blueberry pie. I couldn't imagine facing Roland without Lesus's support. Besides, I'd also gotten to experience what Lesus always had to undergo. It truly wasn't easy, always being thought of as the bad guy. I thought I'd known Lesus, but now I knew him even better.
And here we were, back in this bathroom, back in this place where we needed no masks. It didn't really matter what I looked like, or what Lesus looked like. I was Grisia, and he was Lesus.
We were in this, together, and that's really all that mattered.
Lesus glanced over at me. I took another bite of the pie and felt a warm feeling come over me, a feeling that was super, duper sweet.
Just how I liked it.
A/N: And that's a wrap!
Thank you so much for reading this fic. I really enjoyed writing this fic, both because I got to explore my favorite LSK characters and because I got to chat with many LSK fans along the way. It was great fun getting to interact with so many of you! Bittersweet Sweetness is the 2nd LSK fic I started (the first is Entries in a Holy Knight's Journal...which is still not complete yet, haha). There were barely any (English) LSK fic around back then in 2011. I'm really happy to see that there's more LSK fic being written now, and more readers around too. Yay for LSK fanfics, writers, and readers! You all rock. :D
A PDF of this fic is available for download at my LJ! If interested, feel free to drop by. The PDF includes revisions to the fic for better grammar and more consistency, and a large version of the cover by Kiyutsuna is also included. The overall plot has not been changed. An explanation of the title and the inspiration behind the fic can be found in the same post!
lucathia-rykatu . livejournal (slash) 304983 . html
(Take out the spaces and replace slash with an actual slash /. The link is also available on my profile page.)
In addition to the PDF, a printed version of this fic will be available as an anthology with all of my completed LSK fics posted before July 2014. A book! Yes, a book! It is mostly for myself (because hey, three years of my life!) and is not for profit. If anyone wants to see what the book looks like, I will have pictures in my livejournal. :D It is around 400 pages long. I will probably be able to order more if anyone wants a copy (not sure why you would want one though haha) and will only charge the manufacturing and shipping costs for it. This is not for profit. Anyway, keep an eye out on my LJ if interested.
Last of all, I mentioned the possibility of a sequel and a spin-off, but now I'm considering not writing them anymore, as I'm afraid I would probably have to commit another three years to them, and people are probably already tired of this verse! (I feel like I'm beating a dead horse sometimes. It really shouldn't take 38 chapters to tell this story! :'D;;;)
Dishonest Honesty: This is the story of Storm and Earth swapping places. Storm tries to investigate the trinket only to accidentally activate it himself. The whole continent knows that the Earth Knight is honest and terribly bad with women while the Storm Knight is just the opposite; however, that perception couldn't be further from the truth. When Earth and Storm end up accidentally switching bodies, it should have solved all of their problems. It really doesn't.
My original idea before writing Bittersweet Sweetness was that I wanted to see Storm and Earth swapped, so this fic has always been on my mind. I wrote a bit of Dishonest Honesty before I even finished writing Bittersweet Sweetness... Because of that, some of what happens near the end of this fic already invalidates the beginning of Dishonest Honesty... haha... Anyway, do I really want to write another longfic about people swapping places? Probably not unless I can make it feel super different.
Untitled BL Spin-off: I am saddened that Sun and Judgment didn't get to drink as each other. So, this spin-off would've remedied that. And it would've included some drunk confessions too. Bittersweet Sweetness is platonic (yes, it's platonic... just with lots of "hints"). I kind of wanted to see what would happen if the fic didn't stay platonic... so, I've been considering exploring that in a spin-off/alternate version of events.
So, what did you think of the ending? Of the fic in general? Anything else you wanted to see, but it didn't make it into the fic? Comment away~. I might write some extras even if not the sequel/spin-off. (Who knows, maybe I'll change my mind, haha... But right now, I just want to bask in the feeling of being ~done~)
It goes without saying that I'm still writing LSK, haha (in fact, I've been updating and working on other fics more than this one recently). I hope you'll stick around!
(I would also like to take this time to disclaim any influence A Slice of Wedding Cake had on this fic. The ending of this fic was planned way before the wedding fic came into existence. =P (However, you can blame Kiyutsuna for the slashy hints getting even more obvious, hahahaha). Now, as for Bittersweet Sweetness coming chronologically before A Slice of Wedding Cake and being part of the "long and twisted chain of events"...I can get behind that, haha)