Broken Hearts Can Always Mend

Set a year after the events of Phantasy Star IV, this is a fic based off of two things I always wondered about: First off, did Chaz and Rika stay together? And what the heck happened to Rune?

This combines the two. Not too much else to say about this one. . .might go for more chapters if people like it though. And if you like sap, you'll probably like this. Read on and enjoy! ~_^ (Disclaimer: PSIV and its characters are not mine.)

CHAPTER 1: The End of Pain, The Beginning of Happiness



"Where's. . .Rika?" Chaz asked.

"She has already gone to the Landale," Wren told him. "Parting must be difficult for her."

As Wren, Demi, Raja, and Kyra boarded the ship bound first for Dezolis, then for Zelan, the tall, dark-haired android turned and gave his tiny, inscrutable smile to Chaz. "Goodbye, Chaz. I have a feeling we will see each other again."

The rest of the intrepid bunch walked away after the Landale started to take off: Hahn back to Krup and his girlfriend Saya; Gryz back to Tonoe and his sister, Pana; and Rune to wherever it was he felt like going. Chaz was left alone, somewhat despondent.

But then he heard the Landale doors opening above him.

He looked up. "Rika!"

She shouted back down at him. "Chaz!" Then, with one last teary look at Wren and the others, she jumped from the exit.

"What?! Rika!" The blond swordsman ran to catch the girl as she fell.

She landed in his arms.

Chaz was both laughing and crying. "Rika! You. . ."

"Chaz!" And for the first time, there on the open plains outside of Kadary, they shared an embrace and a kiss. . .

*

*What happened to those days?*

Rika sat alone in their house, waiting for Chaz to come home from work. She glanced at the clock. *4:50. . .just a little while longer.*

All of a sudden, there was a knock on the door.

"Just a second!" The girl jumped up and hurried to the door--and to her surprise, when she opened it, there stood Kyra.

"Huh?! Kyra! What are you doing here?" Rika hugged her friend.

"I just got in from Dezolis," she said. "I'm getting a bit of training from Mito, so I figured I'd come by and see you guys. Where's Chaz?"

"Not home yet."

"Are you guys married yet?"

Rika looked down, a little sadly, and shook her head. "And I'm beginning to wonder if we ever will."

"It's been a year! I figured you guys would've tied the knot by now!" Then Kyra realized what the Numan girl had said. "What do you mean, 'if we ever will?'"

"He's working a lot, and I don't see him much. When I try to do something special for him, he just shrugs and says 'Thanks.' It hurts me."

The Esper gave Rika another hug. "I'm sorry things aren't going well. I wish there was something I could do to help. . .is there?"

"No," she sighed. "There's nothing anyone can do. But thanks. Do you want to stay for dinner? I've got a roast in the oven."

"That's nice of you to ask. . .Mito hasn't been home for a while. I was hoping she would cook something. But I guess that I don't have to worry anymore about it. Thanks."

"Of course. You want a cup of tea?"

"If it isn't too much trouble." Kyra sat down at the table in the kitchen, and Rika joined her when she'd set the pot on the stove.

They didn't say much for a while, but eventually Kyra looked up at the clock. "Shouldn't he be home by now?"

Rika looked up--5:10. "Yeah. . .he only works down the street. Oh well, maybe he got held up. He'll call." She got up and poured the boiling water into a pair of mugs, dropping a teabag in each.

At 5:30, the phone still hadn't made a sound.

Kyra raised an eyebrow. "I hate to ask this, but. . .is it possible that he's not at work?"

"What do you mean?"

"Well. . .uh. . ."

Rika was irritated. ""I highly doubt he'd be spending time at the bar instead of coming home. He's more disciplined than that."

Kyra peered into her tea. *That's not what I meant,* she thought, but instead she said "I guess you're right. Sorry."

They continued to talk--Rika asked about Raja and his friend Gyuna, who ran a bar in Ryuon on Dezolis, and Kyra asked about Hahn and Saya, who'd just gotten married a few weeks before. The time passed as the two old friends chatted, and at 6:15 Rika became worried, began praying that Chaz would call.

As if she'd willed it, the telephone rang. Rika jumped up, spilling her sixth cup of tea in her haste, and ran to answer it.

"Hello?" Her voice was full of anxiety.

The voice on the other end of the line didn't sound like Chaz--it seemed softer and a little deeper. "Rika? Are you okay?"

She sighed. "I'm sorry. I must sound like a wreck."

"Do you know who this is?"

She thought for a second. The voice was soft enough to be Hahn's, but much too deep--and not deep enough to be Gryz's.

Her train of thought was cut off abruptly as the man spoke again: "It's Rune."

"Rune?!"

Kyra stood up. "It's not really, is it?"

"How are you, Rika?" Rune asked.

"I'm okay, but I'm a little worried. I don't know where Chaz is. He should have been home an hour ago."

"Did you guys ever. . .walk down the aisle?" Her unhappy sigh told him everything he needed to know. "Are you still living in Aiedo?"

"Yeah. . ."

"I'll be right there. I'm in Nalya right now."

"Nalya? I didn't think they had phones there anymore."

"They do. . .Anyhow, hang up. I'm coming over. Alright?"

"Okay."

"See you soon."

"Goodbye." Rika hung up the phone and gave Kyra a weak smile. "He's coming here."

"You're kidding!" Kyra jumped up, forgetting she was sitting in a chair and hitting her knees on the table. Despite the pain, she continued.

"Whoa," Rika laughed. "You're awfully happy about something."

"Rune's coming! Rune's coming!" Kyra had started a chant.

Rika shook her head and smiled--but her happy look vanished when the phone rang again.

She nervously picked it up. "Hello?" she squeaked.

"Rika, it's me," Chaz said.

"Oh, thank God! I've been waiting for you to call. Are you alright?"

"I'm fine, yeah. Uh. . .I'm going to be late tonight. I'm stuck here."

The veil of relief on her face disappeared and was replaced with chagrin. "What? How late?"

"Um. . .I'm thinking it won't be before ten that I get home."

"But I've got dinner in the oven! Kyra's here, and Rune's coming!"

There was silence on the other end, followed by a heavy sigh. "Rika. . .I'm sorry. I'll try to make it home as soon as I can."

"Okay," she said forlornly.

"Goodbye."

"I love you." But the line was already dead.

She slowly put the receiver down and turned to Kyra. "He's not going to be home until late. He says he's stuck."

Kyra sighed. "I'm sorry. Do you want me to go?"

"No!. . .Sorry, didn't mean to yell. I'm just a little mad. No, I'd actually appreciate it if you would stay and eat with me and Rune."

"I'd love to. Thank you."

"Anytime." Rika nodded and started to clean up the spilled tea, but just as she'd twisted all the water out of a dishtowel, there was a knock on the door.

"That must be. . ." Rika didn't finish before she heard the door opening and Kyra's happy screams.

"Rune! Rune! Welcome back!"

Rune looked down at the pretty Esper, another of his own race, and smiled. "Thanks, Kyra. But I didn't think this was your house?"

Then he fell back against the door as Rika tackled him in a hug.

"I'm so happy to see you!" She was on the verge of tears.

The tall sorcerer very cautiously stood himself back up again, careful not to step on any feet. "I'm happy to see you too, Rika."

"This day has been so awful," she said. "I didn't hear from Chaz until just a little while ago, and he said he'd be late, too late to see you guys. But now you're here, so everything's alright!"

"Whoa, wait a second." Rune held up his hands. "How late did he say he would be exactly?"

"Not before ten. . ." Rika looked down.

Rune raised one ice-blue eyebrow and looked at Kyra, who shook her head.

He gently raised Rika's chin with one finger. "No one's saying that it can't be fun without him. Besides, we have a lot to catch up on."

She gave him something that resembled a smile. "Yeah, I guess so."



"So the first time that Pana showed Gryz that she had learned to cast Flaeli, I thought the bottom half of his beak was going to crack on the floor!"

Rika and Kyra giggled as Rune told them the story of how he had taught Gryz's little sister how to use Esper magic.

"But I don't understand," Kyra began. "How could a Motavian learn to use our spells?"

"Remember who's teaching her," Rune answered with a wink.

"True," Kyra nodded. Then she laughed as she realized he had been joking.

"Do you guys think that maybe you could teach me to use that kind of magic?" Rika asked. "All I ever learned was stuff to heal and protect people."

The two Espers looked at each other. "We'll sure try," Rune said.

"Thanks!" Rika smiled, happy for the first time that night. Her dinner had been a success, and the three were in the living room drinking coffee and enjoying some down time that had been far too elusive when they had last been together. She had almost lost track of how quickly the night was slipping away, but then Kyra looked up.

"It's almost nine. I had better get going back to Mito's house." The girl stood and smiled. "Thanks for dinner. I hope Chaz gets home soon."

"Thank you for staying." Rika hugged Kyra and handed her the purse she'd dropped on the sofa.

After she left, Rune looked at Rika and shrugged. "I had better go too. I don't want Chaz to be jealous."

Rika giggled. "No, that's not a good sight. Thank you--you've helped me feel a lot better."

"No problem. . .anytime." Rune walked to the door and looked back. "We should really do this more."

"Yeah. . .See you tomorrow?" she asked

"Sure. Later." The door closed, but opened shortly thereafter.

Rika looked up, surprised to see Chaz stumble in. "Honey, you're home!" She hugged him tightly. "I was worried sick about you. . ." She stopped when she felt him struggling a little to get out of her embrace.

"Are you okay?. . .You. . .you've been. . ." She could smell the tequila on his breath.

He didn't say anything.

Then she smelled something else on him--something even more sweet and biting.

*Perfume?*

"Were you. . .?" Rika couldn't even finish the question.

Chaz shook his head. "I don't know what you mean." His words were slurred, and he couldn't look Rika in the eyes.

"Look at me, Chaz." She took his face in her hands and forced him to meet her gaze. "Were you doing something besides drinking?"

His brown eyes dropped.

The tears came swiftly to Rika. "How could you be so cold?" she cried. "I love you with all my heart and soul. . .and that isn't enough for you?"

He looked ashamed, but still remained silent.

She didn't realize what she was doing until her hand had already passed his face.

Chaz cried out in pain and rubbed his cheek, and Rika, seeing she had hurt him, started crying harder.

Neither of them said much for a while, but then she choked out "I think we should see other people."

"What?" he asked incredulously.

She didn't answer. Instead she turned around and ran into their bedroom, hurriedly packing a bag. She briefly stopped in the hall when he began to speak:

"Rika, don't do this. . .I love you. . ."

"Yeah, well it's too little too late." With tears running down her face, she slammed the door behind her.



Rika walked to the park in Aiedo, sitting down hard on one of the benches. She felt that all her tears had been cried, but maybe she could wait here until she felt like talking to someone. Then Kyra and Mito would be happy to hear her out.

But then she felt a strong presence behind her. She craned her head around-- and sighed when she saw Rune.

"Hey, how come you're out so late?" he asked, sitting next to her.

"I had a fight with Chaz," she told him. "He came home, and he'd been fooling around with someone else. So now we're split up for I don't know how long." She didn't want to cry in front of him, but it was too late.

Rune could see the tears pooling in Rika's eyes. He moved a little closer to her on the park bench and took her hand. "It's okay," he whispered. "Everything will be just fine."

"How could you be so sure of that?" she wept.

He gently touched her face with his other hand, wiping a tear away. "I won't let you be sad," he whispered.

Rune took her into his arms and held her, letting her head rest against his shoulder. He softly tilted his head downward and kissed a tear rolling off her cheek, stopping it in its tracks. "I love you, Rika," he whispered.

"I love you too, Rune." Then she looked up at him, looked into his eyes-- and smiled.



So what did you guys think? Wanna see more? R&R please! ^o.o^