Alpha Redux

BY : Seven
Category: Final Fantasy X > General
Dragon prints: 769
Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy X, nor any of the characters from it. I do not make any money from the writing of this story.

I’m baaaack! Gosh, I’m really sorry about the delay. Been a crazy last semester with school and soccer and life and junk. FINALS kicked my ass! My muse went AWOL, and I didn’t want to cheapen this story for you loyal readers by hurrying through it with no emotion behind the words.
Thanks a million times over for the encouraging emails/death threats and for keeping the faith in me. I am back in the saddle, folks. Yee-hah!!!

Al Bhed language Alert! But it’s just one sentence. Wanna know what it means? You know where to go. http://ffx.annamation.ca/albhed.php - A lovely site!

Read on and I sincerely hope you enjoy. :)

__________________

“Take my hand…take my whole life too…”
__________________

Tidus sat, hunched over and sucking air. The last time he’d been this nervous was re hre his first pro blitzball game at 13. It had been a while, but the sweaty palms, the thud-thud-thud of his heart, and too-dry mouth was hard to forget.

The past two days would be hard to forget. He remembered how he spent the night before, passing Ronso trials to marriage. The hunting thing sounded cool and all, right up until he discovered he had to spend two days in the freezing-ass woods and caves. He hadn’t minded that much; Yuna’s pilgrimage had prepared him well. But once he’d been informed that he had to kill a deer using only his speed and a spear, things started to suck. For one, who knew a deer was so fast? And who knew they could stand up and punch like kangaroos? He sure hadn’t, and he had the bruises on his neck and chest to show for it. Thank goodness he hadn’t gotten another stupid black eye. But all things aside, he did get a nice-sized deer in the end, much to the praise of Kimahri and his general, Korteth.

It had been rough, but hanging out with those guys for two days straight had been kind of cool, once they loosened up. He even got them to laugh a couple of times. But more than once, he furtively wished he could get out of that all-male sausage party and see Yuna. During the night, he usually found himself furtively wishing he could roll over in his sleep and bump into her soft warmth. He wished that he could wrap his arms around her waist, and simply bury his face in her fragrant hair. But he had to settle for rolling awkwardly into the broad back of a furry Ronso guy on a three-man pallet, in a lean-to, in the cold Gagazet woods. Gross.

Tidus had really had enough of the manly companionship. Really.

His nervous sweat was finally drying, and starting to chill him as he sat in the hut, waiting for the wedding to begin. Gosh, he was nervous. For how bad he’d wanted to see Yuna, he was ten times that in nervousness about the wedding. Kimahri had explained the ceremony to him, and he knew what to do, what to say, but he this uncanny knack for screwing things up. Even though she had never said so in words, Tidus knew this wedding meant everything to Yuna, and he just wanted to make her happy. She deserved the perfect day, so he wasn’t going screw it up.

Pushing himself to his feet, Tidus walked over to the giant shard of glass propped up against the wall that served as a mirror. He began to inspect himself, taking in his warrior wedding ensemble. Large, brown furry boots covered his feet and legs, up to a point just below his knees. They were tight around his calves; held in place by leather strips that crisscrossed at his shins.

As he lifted his eyes to his hips, a deep frown creased his features. Tidus had never questioned his masculinity; but this damn skirt he was wearing made him wonder if other people would wonder about him. It’s not really skirt, he reasoned, tilting his head. Kimahri called it a ree-sa. Typical Ronso males wore more studly-looking loincloths, but this smaller reesa was ceremonial wedding dress for males. It was dyed red, and short; coming only to his mid-thigh, and it was made from the hide of the deer he’d slain the night before. A large, golden rope was looped around his waist and tied in a knot around his hips, to keep his garment from slipping.

Next were the sleeve-like things that covered his forearms. They too, were made from the previous night’s kill, but ceremonial feathers adorned them, their colorful tips tickling the exposed skin just under his biceps and elbows. He didn’t know what the heck they were called, or their purpose, but he liked them. They made him feel kind of studly in spite of the miniskirt he was wearing. Suddenly, he tried to envision what Yuna was wearing. He hoped she had on a short skirt too. Yum. Easy access…

“Ey boy, you ready yet?”

Startled, Tidus jumped at the gruff tone, and looked up to see Yuna’s Uncle Cid framing the doorway to the hut. He couldn’t help but be embarrassed for thinking about Yuna so sexually when her uncle was there. “Um, yeah! I’m just waiting on my cue from Kimahri,” he gibbered, trying to will the redness from his face.

Cid had taken the wedding idea with gusto; even donning the ceremonial dress of the Ronso, much to Yuna’s surprise. She had explained that the Al Bhed were very proud of their race, and since her uncle was the leader, it was unheard of for him to take the dress of a Ronso. Tidus figured he was just happy to see his niece getting married and happy. But her uncle actually managed to look manly in his reesa and boots; while Tidus felt like a schoolgirl. The Al Bhed symbols tattooed on his chest added to his rugged effect. Tidus found himself suddenly wishing for chest hair. Or battle scars. His bruises were some consolation; at least they offset his own miniskirt.

Cid threw the doorflap to the side, and stomped into the room, shaking the packed snow off his boots. “It’s colder ‘n an old mage’s tit out there!” he exclaimed, walking over to Tidus.

“Yeah it’s pretty cold,” Tidus laughed. Nice analogy. “Didn’t Lulu or Yuna Nulfrost you?”

The older man shook his head brusquely. “Nah, I don’t need no fancy magic.” He waved off the notion with his hand. “So what’s the holdup?”

Tidus shrugged; glad he personally wasn’t too macho for some Lulu-cast magic. “I dunno. But Kimahri and Wakka said they’d be back to tell me when we’re starting.”

“Mmm,” Cid grunted, lowering himself into a wooden chair next to the bed with a thump. “Siddown, boy, I wanna talk to you.”

Swallowing, Tidus obeyed. He’d been expecting this talk for a while; he just wished it didn’t have to happen when he was already so on edge. Forcing himself to breathe evenly, he dug his thumbs into the hem of his reesa and leaned forward to face Cid. The Al Bhed leader leaned forward, clapping a calloused hand on Tidus’ shoulder. “I’m not a man of a whole bunch of sentimental crap,” Cid started, his eyes boring into the groom’s. “but you’re about to marry my niece today, boy. I treat her just like Rikku, and I love her just as much. You better love her more.” The grip on his shoulder tightened, and Cid leaned closer and pointed a calloused finger in his face. “You better make sure she’s happy every second of every day or….E’mm lid ouin pymmc uvv.”

Huh? “Erm…what does that mean?” Tidus asked in a small voice. It sounded deadly.

Smiling a slightly feral smile, Cid stood, and barked a rumbling laugh. “Just make sure you do her right, and hopefully you won’t find out.”

Nodding, Tidus fought the urge to scratch the back of his head. Or run. “Heh heh, okay Cid,” he managed nervously.

Just then, another wave of cold air flowed through the room as Wakka and Kimahri bustled into the hut, wearing matching leather reesas like Cid. Damn, he was so glad he had mages for friends. Otherwise, he would be freezing. “Is it time?” he asked expectantly, looking from one friend to the other. Man, he was nervous.

“You real excited ya?” Wakka grinned, walking over to the bed to punch Tidus affectionately in the arm.

Taking a deep breath, Tidus stood, pulling his reesa back down. It kept riding up and pissing him off. He just hoped it wouldn’t do so in front of everyone. “Yeah man, but I am sooo nervous. Have you seen Yuna yet?”

Tidus frowned in chagrin. The question surprised him; he hadn’t realized he wanted to know so badly how she was doing. Was she nervous? Happy? He hoped so. However, Wakka wasn’t surprised. “Maaan, she look beautiful. Never seen her so happy. Like she glowin or somethin,” he smiled, speaking softly.

Warmth spread through Tidus’ chest, and blossomed into a smile. Man, he couldn’t wait to see her. To marry her. Suddenly for all the nervousness, he was overcome with a sense of urgency just as strong. “Well, let’s do this!” he exclaimed, reaching up and quickly pulling his fist down in his automatic blitzball celebration.

Cid and Wakka laughed at his exuberance, while Kimahri merely lifted a corner of his mouth. “Tidus have one more thing,” he said turning around and reaching into a leather sack to get something.

“I don’t have to fight anyone to the death or anything, do I?” he joked.

A shake of Kimahri’s white mane told him it was not another trial, and after rummaging for a minute, he finally swiveled his hulking body back around, to reveal a very elaborate headband. It was thick leather; light brown in color, with four blue feathers evenly spaced around its circumference. Three small, red jewels adorned the front, and as Kimahri placed the obviously sacred headdress in his hands, Tidus noted that the hide was extremely soft to the touch.

Before he could ask him, Kimahri began to explain. “Ronso make headdress for first-born. Headdress for blessing. Kimahri make Tidus headdress.”

Tidus slowly raised his gaze from the sacred item to Kimahri’s steely orbs. He couldn’t believe Kimahri thought so much of him. Suddenly, he was reminded of the Ronso’s words during Yuna’s pilgrimage. ‘Kimahri have no family. But Kimahri not alone.’ Tidus had no living family either, but as he looked around the room at just one half of his friends, he finally understood that statement. Grinning widely, he reached up and gently slid the last piece of his wedding outfit down onto his head. Strangely, he felt complete, and totally ready. “How do I look?” he asked, holding his hands out to the sides.

Kimahri nodded once at him, and Wakka gave him a thumbs-up. “You look like a man,” Cid commented, a quiet note in his usual gruff voice.

Averting what could be his undoing in the sentimental department, Tidus smirked and puffed out his chest. “You’re just now noticing?”

The older man guffawed, loudly clapping Tidus on barebare back. “I always did like you, kid.”
*****

“Are you ready for this, Sir Tidus?”

Father Zuke, a long time friend of Lulu, rested a robe-covered hand on the nervous groom’s bare shoulder. Tidus turned from his spot next to Wakka, Cid and Kimahri to offer the bald, clean-cut priest a small smile. “Yep,” he breathed shakily, meeting the father’s comforting gaze.

Zuke chuckled good-naturedly. “Congratulations, son. You are truly blessed.”

“Thanks,” Tidus replied honestly, turning back around to face the cro

It was snowing on Mt. Gagazet as always, but Lulu and Yuna had made it out at some point to cast Nulfrost on all of the guests and wedding party, save Cid, Kimahri and the other Ronso in attendance. The islanders were obvious among the crowd; they wore heavy cloaks and jackets in spite of the spell. Tidus grinned the sight. But in spite of the temperature, everyone was comfortable.

The entire multitude of them.

He figured it was going to be a small affair, with just their friends. But he had underestimated just how many friends they had made, and lives they had apparently touched. Once people heard word of the marriage, gifts and letters had flooded Vilucha’s ferry.

Tidus’ rapidly beating heart brought him out of his reverie. Was it possible for someone’s heart to beat out of their chest? Like really?

He wondered if he would be the first person for that to happen to. At least there would be witnesses. Maybe he would be in the historical schoolbooks. It would all be all Yuna’s fault. Besides, she was the one who wanted to get married in the freezing damn mountains anyway. Maybe he wouldn’t be so nervous if they weren’t standing on ice for pete’s sake.

Suddenly, a sharp pain manifested itself in his ribs. Wakka had nudged him with his elbow. “Ow Wakka!” Tidus grumbled, frowning at his groomsman.

Wakka was smirking, and folded his arms across his chest. “You were thinkin dem weird thoughts again, ya?” he supplied knowingly.

Man, how did he do that? Tidus relaxed, smiling a little. “I’m just nervous again,” he murmured sheepishly.

“Why you nervous? You know how many guys are throwin demselves into volcanoes ‘cause you marryin Lady Yuna?” The large islander chuckled, carefully ruffling the the unruly hair peeking over the groom’s headdress. “Plus, all dem blitzball groupie girls whose dreams you crushin by getting married…”

Tidus grinned at the mental image, turning to completely face Wakka. “Shut up, Wakka.” He punched his friend in the arm in reprimand.

“Whoaaa…” Wakka’s shocked face focused on something over Tidus’ shoulder. Before he could ask what he was talking about, the larger islander merely pointed past the groom, and Tidus turned around, only to feel his own jaw slacken.

Yuna.

The ceremonial drums began to beat loudly, and the entire wedding party and guests stood in respect and appreciation of the approaching bride.

His first thought was an expletive. His second was that Wakka was sooo right; she looked ….amazing.

The bride was slowly making her way down the aisle toward him, with a radiant smile to light her path. She wore a long ceremonial dress, with long sleeves extending over her hands, which were holding her bridal bouquet. The Ronso gown was red in color, and looked to be made of simple animal hide, much like his reesa. However, hers was gorgeous in its simplicity, with linear patterns of dyed gold and white lines adorning the bodice and sleeves. She too, wore fur boots, but hers were the brilliant red of her dress. His appreciative gaze traveled back up to her beaming face; where he noticed her usually free hair was woven back into two simple braids. She wore a headband like him, but hers was a little smaller, with a medium-sized Gagazet diamond adorning her forehead. Tidus felt like his face was going to split in half from the width of his grin. Had it really only been a couple of days they’d spent apart?

The groom stood back a little, taking in the full effect. Beautiful.

Trailing behind Yuna were her three bridesmaids, all dressed in Lupine-blue fur coats. Except they weren’t really fur coats, per se. The long garments were styled in that of a heavy cloak, but were open down the middle to their exposed navels. Lulu was the only exception; he figured Lulu’s pregnancy had something to do with her coat being sewn closed. Although, Tidus wondered if Lulu would have gone for such clothing had she not been pregnant. Blue fur boots, styled like his, adorned their feet, and each woman’s hair was braided in Ronso style like Yuna’s. threthree wore brilliant matching smiles.

Tidus looked down into Yuna’s smiling eyes as they kneeled down onto the wooden ceremonial dais. “You look amazing.”

“So do you; I forget what nice legs you have,” she giggled quietly.

“Hey, don’t make fun or I won’t show you what’s under my skirt later,” he teased.

Yuna dramatically clamped her mouth shut, bringing her fingers across her lips in a “zip-up” motion. Tidus laughed.

“My fellow Spirans.” Father Zuke raised his robed hands to the crowd, grabbing everyone’s attention – even the giddy bride and groom. “We are joined here today to celebrate the union of two hearts and the intertwining of two souls.”

Speaking of hearts, Tidus could barely hear the priest over the thudding of his. “Lady Yuna. Sir Tidus.” Zuke’s charming smile was aimed down at him and Yuna as he spoke. “In Ronso heritage, one Ronso must request to join with the heart of another. Upon acceptance, the couple must state their individual vows and request of its people and ancestors to bless their joining. Is this your wish today?”

Out of the corner of his eye, Tidus saw Yuna nod happily and followed suit. “Yes.” Even their voices came out as one. Freaky.

Zuke looked directly at Yuna, lifting a robed arm to rest his palm on Yuna’s cheek, stroking his thumb slowly across the smoothness of her face. Tidus scowled. Was that necessary? “Lady Yuna,” the Father continued, ignorant to the groom’s irrational internal jealousy, “do you willingly accept the request of Sir Tidus for your heart?”

He gulped, suddenly feeling an equally irrational fear that she would say no. But as always, Yuna eased his fears by casting a loving smile his way. Tidus grinned back at her, beside himself with pride that this beautiful woman loved him, and was about to give herself to him in front of all these people. “Yes, I did,” the bride stated proudly.

Father Zuke’s hand lifted from Yuna’s head, to outstretch its length toward the crowd. “Please, Lady Yuna, state your intentions,” he requested.

Tidus turned back to Yuna, who had risen from the platform to stand before him and the crowd. “Everyone,” Yuna said loudly, opening her arms to them. “I wish to thank you for coming today. There’s…there’s so much I have to be grateful to you all for, and I am more grateful than anything that you all have come to witness the happiest day of my life. And my friends,” she turned completely around to bow once at her entire wedding party. “I know that I would not be here if it weren’t for you all. No one has better friends than I do, and I will be in debt to each of you until the end of time. When I needed you, you were all there. I could not have imagined a better family. Or a better love.” The last was aimed at Tidus; the blue-and-green of Yuna’s eyes boring into his own.

Her hands reached out to capture his, and he let her bring him to his feet. His heart was thudding still, but he felt it begin to even out as he fell into that warm comfort of her eyes. Yuna raised their joined hands to her chest, where she laid his palms over her heart, resting her hands on top of his. He noticed she wore her ring; the sun’s rays were dancing through the facets of the jewels, in turn illuminating their hands. Freaky. But insanely beautiful. Tidus grinned wider.

“Tidus,” she began, stroking the backs of his hands with her thumbs. “we have been through so very much together, haven’t we?” He said nothing, only able to stare and manage a nod. She was so beautiful. “Every day, I think about how lucky I am to be with you and how happy you make me in every single way. When we first met, I loved you. My mind didn’t quite recognize it yet, but my heart knew all along…”

Yuna became blurry in Tidus’ vision through the tears he was busy blinking back. Her words were touching him so deeply…he just wanted to hold her. He leaned in, trapping their hands between their bodies, planting a loving kiss on her warm, receptive mouth. The crowd made a collective “Awww” sigh, and he would have felt stupid if it weren’t for Yuna beaming up at him as she pulled back from his mouth. “Hey, I’m not finished,” she protested with an indulgent chuckle. Tidus merely grinned loopily, drunk with how she made him feel.

“Tidus of Zanarkand,” she continued, every syllable was a warm puff of air against his lips. “I promise to do whatever it tato mto make you happy. I promise to give you whatever you need. I promise to try and be the air you breathe and the answers you seek.” Yuna leaned forward and kissed him sweetly on his lips. “I promise to love you always,” she breathed as she pulled away, nodding up at Father Zuke.

Tidus released a slow shuddering breath, trying to pull himself together. This was absolutely overwhelming. He knew she loved him; she showed him every day, but there was just something awe-inspiring about hearing someone speak in such a way…and having the words directed to you.

“She has accepted, Sir Tidus,” Father Zuke’s gentle voice filtered to the groom’s ears. Oh boy. His turn. But if he planned on trying to cup his cheek, the Father had another thing coming. “Now, please state your intentions.”

Opening his eyes, Tidus swallowed the lump in his throat, and turned to face the expectant crowd. He didn’t see one face of disapproval; instead it was quite the contrary. Everyone was either shedding joyous tears or wearing warm smiles. “I uh, I wrote down all this stuff I was gonna say. Now, we’re up here in front of everyone and all that stuff just flew out of my head.” He reached up and scratched said head, as everyone chuckled. “But, I guess I should say thanks to all of you guys,” he continued, glad for the lighter mood. “I mean, you’ve all been so good Yuna and me, and our friends,” he gestured toward the grooms and bridesmaids, “and that means more than anything. To all of us. I’m also really glad you all are here to celebrate with us. I just can’t believe I’m this lucky. I mean, I’ve got this beautiful woman to love and the best friends in the world.”

“I love you too...” Rikku moaned behind him, bursting into tears. Tidus looked over his shoulder just in time to see Paine hiss something at her, jabbing her with a furry blue elbow. The whole wedding party laughed, and even a few of crowcrowd who knew them all well.

Sobering, the groom looked down at Yuna’s smiling upturned face, and lowered himself to one knee before her. Now came the hard part. He brought their hands to his heart, and he could feel his heart thumping against her palm. Man, he was nervous. “Yuna, you know I’m not the best at this, sooo I’m just gonna tell you what my heart says, okay?”

Biting her lip, his bride nodded.

“So, um, here goes.” Tidus took a deep breath, struggling to keep his voice steady. “I promise to be the best husband in Spira. I might not be the best at first, but I’m gonna work so hard to make you happy every day, Yuna. I promise to protect you and to make sure you are always happy. I will do anything you ask me to. I’ll even do stuff you don’t ask me to. You know, like throwing you in the ocean and…and starting fights with you and stuff.” He grinned, delighting in her tickled laughter. “Seriously though, I promise to never let anyone hurt you. Not even me. I promise to make you laugh when you’re sad, and hold you when you need me to. I will treat you like the maestress of my heart. ‘Cause you are, you know.” Tidus bit the inside of his cheek, struggling against the effect Yuna’s shedding tears. romiromise I’ll love you always, too.”

Lifting up a hand to brush away an errant tear from Yuna’s cheek, he stood and nodded up Father Zuke to continue. The priest turned to his left, bowing. “Elder Kimahri.”

Kimahri stepped forward from his place between Cid and Wakka to present a small, hinged, wooden box with what Tidus recognized as ancient Ronso hieroglyphics carved on the top, framing large carvings of a sun and a crescent moon. As the Ronso lowered his muscular form to kneel before the couple, he slowly flipped the box open and offered it to Father Zuke, who accepted it and straightened. Inside was a small knife with an elaborate wooden handle and a very shiny, sharp-looking blade. The obviously ceremonial dagger was resting on a red cushion. Tidus’ brows lifted. He expected this, but that thing looked sharp.

Kimahri rose to his full height, standing between Yuna and Tidus, but in front of Father Zuke, who remained on the dais. Tidus felt his eyes widen, and his pulse quicken a bit. He stole a glance across Kimahri’s middle at Yuna, whose eyes were calm, but glued on the dagger being handed to the Ronso from the priest.

Kimahri gripped the dagger in one large fist, where only the blade was visible. Then, he reached out with one hand and grabbed the groom’s then the bride’s hands and brought them palm-to-palm. “Lock fingers,” he commanded.

They did, and Tidus watched with more than just a little apprehension as Kimahri brought their joined hands up to steeple in front of him. He looked over at Yuna. “Repeat after Kimahri. Yuna talk to Tidus.” Yuna nodded, and he continued. “Yuna is sun.”

“Yuna is sun,” she repeated.

“Yuna shine brightly – light Tidus path to Tidus destiny. Darkness falls, but Yuna there to bring morning every time.”

Tidus’ bride lowered her eyes from Kimahri to focus on her almost-husband. “Yuna shine brightly,” she smiled, doing just that, “light Tidus path to Tidus destiny. Darkness falls, but Yuna there to bring morning every time.”

He felt her fingers squeeze his a little, and he returned the gesture. How was it possible to love someone this much? He looked up at Kimahri, who in turn was looking down at him. “Repeat after Kimahri. Tidus is moon.”

He obliged. “Tidus is moon.”

“Tidus shine brightly when sun sleeps. Tidus light path to Yuna destiny. Light will fade, but Tidus there to guide Yuna back to brightness of morning.”

Ocean blue met eyes of sea green and the blue of the sky. “Tidus shine brightly while sun sleeps. Tidus light path to Yuna destiny. Ligill ill fade, but Tidus there to guide Yuna back to brightness of morning.” He took a deep breath to calm himself. Event though he felt a little off speaking Ronso dialect, he still meant every word.

The Elder spoke up. “It is Ronso tradition,” he boomed to the crowd. “Consorts join by spirit. Consorts now join by body.” Oh boy. He goes nothing.

Kimahri brought the bride and groom’s still-joined hands in front of him with his own hand, and before Tidus could even think it, the Elder swiftly brought the knife up between them and down in one smooth motion, using the same hand he held them with to then press Tidus and Yuna’s palms together. Oddly enough, Tidus felt no pain. He fixed his eyes on Yuna, who was taking in their hands with the same awe he felt, written all over her expressive face. It was crazy. He could feel the unusual warmth of their sticky palms together. It was like her life essence was flowing through him; he was a part of her now and she was a part of him. How freaking cool was that?

“Tidus and Yuna share body essence. Now share essence of Sacred Mt. Gagazet.”

Lulu stepped forward then, and with a reverent bow, she handed a wooden bowl of freezing-cold-looking water to Kimahri before resuming her previous place. “Merge essence of body with essence of mountain.”

Following Yuna’s lead, Tidus brought his hand to the bowl and submerged it into the water next to hers. Despite the effects of Yuna’s Nulfrost spell, the water was absolutely freezing. “Shit,” he mumbled quietly. Yuna released a startled hiss of her own.

And with that, Kimahri lowered the bowl and handed it up to Father Zuke. “Joining has blessing of those past. Joining is done.”

A huge grin split Tidus face, and he gripped Yuna’s wet hand in his. The crowd cheered, and the drums began to beat loudly, signifying the beginning of the reception and his and Yuna’s lives together. Dimly, he noted that the water had mystical powers; he and Yuna’s hands were not bleeding. While he was thinking, his wife rushed him, releasing his hand and using both of hers to pull his head down to meet hers in soulful kiss that lasted more than a few moments. When Yuna finally pulled away, he merely said, “Wow.”

“Essence of lips,” she joked, her radiant smile lighting up her eyes.

Just then, the entire wedding party rushed them, and while Yuna was nearly dogpiled by women in blue fur coats, he wanhaanhandled up onto Wakka and Cid’s shoulders toward the origin of the beating drums and the reception overlooking the cliffs of ancient Zanarkand. Laughing, he twisted around to see Yuna pop up on Kimahri’s shoulders a few paces behind him in the crowd. “I love you!” he shouted, overjoyed.

She threw her head back and laughed as well. “I love me too!”

Tidus guffawed, in spite of the fact that he wished he could throw her in the ocean for that one. But he was the luckiest man in Spira, so he decided she was allowed to rib him as much as she wanted.

Once the crowd made it to the tables and began to disperse a little, Tidus hopped down from his human perch and walked over to help Yuna down from hers. He stared down into her eyes and kissed her again. Why not? She was officially his now. Suddenly, she focused over his shoulder. “Tidus look,” she said, leading him over the to the edge overlooking his ghost city.

He followed, coming to stand beside her and gaze upon the place that logically should have been the scene of their final night together. That seemed like such a lifetime ago. “It’s unreal, isn’t it?” she murmured softly, echoing his own thoughts.

Tidus nodded. “Pretty much. But who says our story has to be believable? I mean, there’s time travel, magic, sword fights, death...”

“Aeons, corrupt leaders, true love, fake marriages,” she looked up at him. “Real ones.”

He kissed her then. “Yup, it’s real. But you know, it’s too bad you don’t have to save the world again. I kinda liked the adventure.”

His wife chuckled. “Me too. But just being with you is an adventure. Especially when you have had too much to drink.”

Laughing, he pressed a kiss to the part in her braided hair. “Speaking of adventures, let’s go dance. Maybe I can keep up with you this time, ya think?”

She smirked saucily, leading him away from the edge and back to the reception.

He shook his head at her retingting back. Man, he never, ever thought he would get married. Bachelor blitzball stud forever, right? Wrong. But being wrong was turning out to be the best thing that ever happened to him. He thought life was perfect a few nights ago, but even that magical moment in time paled in comparison to this one. Tidus of Zanarkand had his wife and family by his side, his past behind him and the future ahead.

But the chance to begin again…now that was perfection.

The End.


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