Hope: Disquiet

When she gets over her initial shock at seeing the Grand Plaza, Ginger comes alive with the light of discovery. Every new experience thrills her and she's asking questions left and right, of which I answer each one, grinning at her limitless enthusiasm. I'm only too pleased to satisfy her curiosity. That very fact warms my heart and lifts my spirits.

We're taking a slow walk towards the Crystarium Park when the comm device holstered at my side starts to chime. I look at Ginger apologetically. In her eyes glistens the memory of the meadow, how this very sound had sundered the chance of our first kiss. With a squeeze of my hand Ginger smiles at me in understanding and goes over to stand by her brother, the two of them looking out over the city side by side.

I answer the call with mild intrigue and a touch of concern. The only person able to contact me right now is my secretary and she wouldn't do that outside of a last resort. People don't argue with Genevieve LaFevre when she says the director is busy.

"Good morning Mr. Estheim. I'm sorry to disturb you, but I have General Ochain on the line."

"Morning Vive. What's the matter?" I ask.

"General Ochain says it's urgent. He said to mention 'Meteor Javelin' to you."

A shard of ice buries itself in my chest at the mention of those words. I instantly know the severity of the situation and my throat goes dry. Ginger looks so peaceful now, one hand resting on her chocobo's wing. No sooner have I decided to make our happiness paramount than something arrives to threaten that. Perhaps this won't be as serious I'm expecting. "Okay. Put him through."

"Good morning, sir. Apologies for disturbing you but I contact you in the utmost urgency." I hold my breath as the general pauses, likely composing himself for what he's about to say. "They made a move at 6:15am this morning and ground crew alpha are reporting twenty five casualties already. Should I put in place the counter-measures we discussed, sir?"

They say you never see evil coming. It's a slow, creeping darkness that takes you by surprise. Sometimes, I wish "they" wouldn't say anything at all.