Notes: For the lj comm shipswap. Told in a stream of conciousness style.
White flower petals falling look like snowflakes glistening in the sun. This doesn't make sense. Snowflakes don't look like flowers and flower petals don't look like snowflakes. Crowe doesn't know. Crowe doesn't care. He doesn't even know where he is, but the sun looks beautiful between the leaves.
"You're getting married," Crowe hears someone say. A woman with large ears. She's pretty, but Crowe doesn't know her. He doesn't want to marry her. She's not- "I didn't say anything about me." He doesn't understand what she means. He can only think of one person to marry if he ever had to and even then, he isn't sure. The breeze is wonderful and cool. The animals avoid him, but are still curious, and Crowe could swear that some of the traveling humanoids had tails. Tails and ears like human cats. He manages to stay hidden among the foliage, the lovely colorful foliage that look like autumn and spring.
Crowe feels like he's floating in the wind like those flowers, those leaves, those wild birds and other creatures that he can't identify. He doesn't even know if he's alive, but his heart is beating, and he is breathing. He has to be alive unless this is heaven. This can't be heaven. There is no such place anywhere in the universe.
"You'll be married someday. Someone among the million stars, but I didn't say you'd be my husband."
"Then who..." Crowe whispers. He closes his eyes. He's not sure if he cares, but something like that can't be discarded. He senses that her words weren't just fortunes for entertainment only.
He barely remembers how he got here. He remembers a sacrifice. Others died for him and he died for others. His ship is gone. No, he's alive. Crowe doesn't know, but he remembers his friends. Where are they now? Where is he? Somewhere peaceful. Somewhere nice where the sun sets and reveals the galaxy. Somewhere on a planet that is in a solar system that is surrounded by a million stars. The night is full of spectacular diamonds and pearls. Crowe has seen them up close and they look best from afar. There is life on this planet, obviously. Crowe sees plenty of it. He is alive, but what of his friends? Those on his ship are dead. Crowe knows that much, but what about the others? Uncertainty makes his stomach hurt.
"I can see into your future," the woman says in his memories. "You'll be married someday."
"You? I don't even know you. Who are you?"
"I didn't say you'd marry me. Your partner is somewhere out there. Your partner is surrounded by a million stars."
A million stars. There is far more than a million stars in the vast reaches of space. Many more in the entire universe. Someone is out there. Someone Crowe will be marrying. He doesn't know exactly, but he can take a few guesses. That's not good enough. Crowe likes many people, but enough to marry one of them? There can only be one.
The grass is cool and the flowers still look like snowflakes. The stars are beyond counting and they replaced the sun hours ago. There is no moon. Maybe this planet doesn't have one or it's hidden. Maybe it fell into a black hole just like he did. Did his friends fall into one? Not knowing is a slow way of dying.
"Don't be so dramatic. You're not marrying me. Look to the stars, the million stars."
Crowe looks and sees something, but doesn't know what it is, except the stars surround it. He's too tired to care. He wants his red hair to spread among the grass. He closes his eyes.
He dreams of the stars his ship once sailed past. He recalls the planets, his crew, his friends, and even his enemies. He thinks the seer woman is named Eleyna. She keeps talking about marriage and stars. He can't seem to erase that part. He recalls the one who used his weapon like a death sentence. Even his name represented a being of death. Is he the one? Let him be the one. Please. Crowe can't imagine anyone else. If there are any gods, please don't let him be dead.
He opens his eyes and sees someone in purple, a color real men wore. He sees large ears, but they are different from the woman's. He sees white hair. "Arumat?" Is he the one? Is he the one who is surrounded by stars. Please, let it be yes. Crowe can't imagine anyone else and he wouldn't even if he could.
"Yes! I finally found you! I thought you died!" Arumat folds his arms. "I went through hell to find you."
Crowe stands up. He wants to hug Arumat, but can't bring himself to. "No. I don't think so. Is this a dream? Is this heaven?"
Arumat smiles. "No. There's no such thing as heaven. This planet comes close, but it's not heaven."
"Then, what is this place?"
"Roak." Arumat looks around. "You were with someone, a woman, but you ran away from her and I found you here."
"She told me I'd be getting married."
Arumat frowned. "To her?"
Crowe shakes his head while the wind caresses his red hair. "No. She said something about a million stars. Look to the stars. I didn't mean to cut and run, but I didn't even know who she was and she seemed smug to me. She acted like she knew everything. I had to leave as soon as I was able. I wish I could apologize to her; I meant her no disrespect. I just can't get the million stars thing out of my mind. I kept wanting to look to the stars."
Arumat looks at the sky. "I just came from there."
"All I know is that I'm apparently getting married some day."
"Let's leave this place. I think it's driving you nuts."
"You're right. Let's go."
And they leave. Away from the snowflake flowers, away from the woman, away from the planet known as Roak, and away from the one million stars.