OK, this fic idea goes against everything I've ever headcannoned. drawn, or observed about SuzaEuphy. That's probably why I'm writing it? I really wanted to write this Euphemia. Let's see how it goes.

Suzaku has found himself in the graveyard once again. When he can't sleep (which is often), he wanders here. Always in Zero garb. He can't leave his room without donning the troublesome and weighty get-up.

He places both of his gloved hands on an unmarked grave; another dead soldier.
This new collection of bodies was built solely to house those who lost their lives in the building of the Zero Requiem. Suzaku is here to gaze at his own grave with sad eyes. Most of the time, he will sit in front of the simple stone and meditate. Sometimes, if he can focus, if he can dream or imagine hard enough, he can almost envision that he is finally INSIDE that hollow casket meant for him. He dreams about it often. They are not nightmares. Being awake, being alive, is this nightmare for Suzaku.

This is just another one of those nights. A hot and sweaty June darkness. The man has become very aware of the thin layer of perspiration coating his neck, his temples, his thighs. Another night to mourn his losses and wish – wish so hard – to see Euphemia, Lelouch, Shirley… ANYONE again. After all this time, after all those who willed him to change his mind, his pull to death hadn't changed its course. They were the fortunate ones. Perhaps it's selfish, he thinks.

The renegade with emerald eyes is almost to his grave, but then there is the soft muttering of a voice. It is lonely, but it is sweet, and why is it familiar?
Suzaku deftly hunches behind a fairly sizable crypt.

Impossible, it could never be.
The soldier is sure that he has mistaken this woman for another. It is simply a trick of the layers of shadow. Still, being that it is his grave, he is compelled, obligated, to look again. Who could possibly be mourning the Knight of Zero, the traitor, the…

Through the purple of his visor, somehow Suzaku can see her clearly.

Those same curves. The very same pale skin he once dared to caress under the pad of his thumb. Slender arms. Long neck.

Her impossible tresses have been cut off completely. Gentle pink waves frame her soft features and curl at the nape of her precious neck. Pants? A blouse? No flowing dress, no flowery disposition to grace this doomed princess. Euphemia.

It's quite literally impossible. Suzaku breathes short and heavy, his forehead beads multiply and drip onto his nose.

He SAW her die. He say with that cold, still beautiful body for hours after her soul had left them. There was no chance, and yet there was no mistaking it.
Silent tears roll down Suzaku's hidden face and intermix with his perspiring. He wants nothing more than to sob loudly and run to Euphemia and be held forever and ever and still somehow he manages to fight his impulse.

"Suzaku," to the grave. "I truly miss you. How sad it is… you died when I told you not to! Though I know you thought I had died… it's not fair for me to blame you for changing. For dying the way you did. I understand, somehow."

It was all a gentle whisper. The hidden man strained to hear.
She thought he was dead. But then, he thought she had been…
Yet –

Could the Euphemia from SAZ been a body-double? The emperor had plenty of those for public appearances. That concept isn't impossible… was that the same reason she had never said a final "I love you"? Suzaku's mind is absolutely reeling.

She keeps talking at the gravestone, fluttering gestures. Wide emeralds never move from her. They drink in every single fiber of her being, her movement, that existing soul. Unable to accept that she is really here, this is real. What you have dreamt about since you captured Lelouch that day six years ago.

"Lelouch was so brave. I certainly don't agree with everything that happened. You messed up too," the slightest of laughs and it is so, so sad, "I was surprised."

Some serious topics, some trivial things. Time passes.

"I live in France now, but I needed to visit to see what… I needed to see everything that happened here. In the Japan I love so dearly."

Her smile is as kind as ever, but Suzaku sees that lilt of loneliness. He can't bear to miss any changes in her face, her expressions.

How badly he wants to hold her like he did all those years ago. Run his calloused, imperfect palms through her hair and braid it. Cling her waist with his arm, protecting her… the memories rush through his brain. He can't believe she is here.

"I'm keeping a low profile."

The massacre.
"Yes, that… HORRIFIC thing that happened. I still can't piece it all together. I don't even know if I can forgive Lelouch for that just yet. Though he did fulfill his goal."

Why couldn't I know, Euphy. WHY?
"No one could know I was alive. I would likely have been assassinated anyway."
I would have protected you!
"I know you would have tried to protect me, but I just couldn't continue. I was ruined. …I'm very lonely Suzaku."
As am I! I know, Euphy, I know. We've always understood each other perfectly, Euphemia… Let me- just let me—
"And oddly enough, I still don't feel like you've left this world."

Suzaku freezes. She is keen as always.
A sad smile. Rosy cheeks and curls in the wind.

He can never approach her. She can't know. She would discover his identity as soon as he revealed his hiding place. Because that's Euphy. She won't miss it. Neither of them would be able to part after that. Their lives, their plans would be in absolute ruin. Suzaku sobs quietly, into the palms of his sweaty hands, tight gloves.

Both fated, cursed, bound to live in this hell – he and Euphemia would part again. They would meet so much later in the afterlife; in perfect and final bliss, Suzaku decided. No complexity.

She speaks for a minute more. She lay three daisies on his grave. Why daisies? Suzaku can't be sure if she's crying, but her voice is so heavy.

He can only be glad that she is safe. He can only cry himself to sleep more often (perhaps sometimes out of happiness?).

Euphemia rises like a shadow. Finality in her grace.

"Good-bye, Suzaku."
He hears it and he watches so intently, so focused, through water, through looking-glass eyes. She's a ghost, she must be. Any second, she will disappear.

Curls, pale pink in the moonlight. Suzaku wants to run to her, but

Strolling, there she goes. Away, just away. To France, or maybe she'll have to keep moving. Maybe it's India next, or Australia, but never here and never the homeland.
Suzaku is here, Suzaku is Zero.

No, take me with you. Let's run and hide and always be together!

But he doesn't run, he doesn't say it.

The soft click of her walk fades all too quickly and Suzaku feels as though he is waking.

Come back. Oh God, let me see her.

Suzaku waits until morning, but she never returns.

The sun is higher in the sky when he decides he must go. Must return to his duties. Wipe the grime and salt from his body and regain what dignity there is.
With one more silent wish, he stands, shoulders squared.