Alpha Redux

BY : Seven
Category: Final Fantasy X > General
Dragon prints: 821
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.

Alright…y’all talked me into it. ;) Chapter 14! Working up to the wedding…

Special thanks to: Noelle aka mistiza for helping me with my writer’s block and Lucy aka Hiasha for encouraging me soooo much. You ladies rock!

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“I want to thank you. For giving me the best days…of my life.”
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“All done,” Yuna said happily, laying Kimahri’s heavy braid back down his shoulder.

Her lifelong guardian rose from his seated position, and retrieved his ever-present spear from the side of the sofa. “Yuna braid like Ronso.”

This made Yuna smile. When she was a little girl, Kimahri used to grudgingly let her practice braiding his long mane of hair. The little ritual had remained a special bonding between them over the years; he would sit patiently while she braided his hair. She had gotten really good, and Kimahri didn’t fidget anymore. During her pilgri, sh, she often wondered sadly who would braid his hair once she was gone. But now, he would come every few weeks, to get his hair re-braided, even though Ronso women knew fully well how to do it. He would never tell her so in words, but she knew he came because he missed her as much as she missed him.

“Thank you, Kimahri,” she smiled up at him. But she saddened, thinking of how it would probably be weeks until she saw him again. “But I wish you didn’t have to go.”

She stood as well, following him to the door. Now that the night of the party was over, it was back to business for Kimahri, which meant back to Mt. Gagazet. Yuna was always sad to see him go, since she didn’t get to see him everyday anymore. She watched as he pulled the strap of his leather canteen over a massive shoulder. “Kimahri has important duties in Gagazet. Yuna knows.”

She sighed. “I know. I just wish you stayed closer to us.”

No one else would’ve been able to tell, but Yuna saw a slight flicker of softness cross Kimahri’s usually steely gaze. He offered her his bent elbow. “Yuna walk Kimahri to dock.”

Yuna smiled, feeling warmed by his gentleness toward her. As she slipped her hand into the crook of his arm, she hoped that one day, Kimahri would have a nice wife to show his gentle side to, as well as lots of kids for her to play with when he visited. Maybe, she thought wistfully, their children would grow up together.

The two left the house, and began down the beach. It was early, and Yuna could hear the birds chirping in the trees as they walked by. Kyrt, the young fisherman who lived two houses down, was already pushing his boat to sea to get an early start on the day. The sun had yet to rise, and the night chill was still looming on the beach. Ahead, she could see the others already waiting at the dock to see Kimahri off. It was nice; they usually left her and Kimahri alone to bond for a little while when he visited, or when she visited him. She knew their relationship was special, he was the only person she’d ever known with whom she could have a conversation without speaking. She supposed knowing someone who’d protected her since she was seven years old would do that.

Yuna loved Kimahri will all of her heart. She loved Tidus madly, and very deeply, but this bond she shared with Kimahri was like family. He was there for her when she was a lost little girl without her parents, who was forced to move away from her friends and life in the capital and to a new island. He gave up his honor and birth rite in his Ronso clan, to be her guardian for life. He’d held her when she cried, tossed her in the air to make her laugh, and he was even there for her the day she broke the news to the island that she would follow in her father’s legendary footsteps. Chappu, Wakka and Lulu tried to talk her out of it from the beginning, but Kimahri just accepted her decision and treated her as an adult. His strong, silent support had been Yuna’s strength many times in her young life. She wanted to repay him. Or at least show him some kind of deep respect to thank him for all he’d done for her.

“Kimahri, I would like to have a Ronso wedding,” she told him, after they’d walked for while. “Do you think that would be okay?”

He didn’t respond for almost a minute, but he never broke their steady pace. “Yuna have Ronso wedding to match Ronso diamond,” he stated, and Yuna saw a minute hint of a smile.

She beamed, hugging his fuzzy barrel of an arm. “Yes, I will. I want to have it at Mt. Gagazet and everything,” she said excitedly.

They walked onto the wooden planks of the dock, just as the departing horn blared from the boat. Even though they’d played out this scenario many times, Yuna was still a little sad to have to say goodbye again. She watched silently as everyone said their goodbyes and wished him well, but she smiled when Rikku tried to wrap her arms around Kimahri, but he was too big.

Kimahri turned to face Yuna, hulking over her as usual. He told her, “Kimahri make arrangements.”

“Thank you,” she said, her statement layered with meanings. Yuna smiled into his burly chest and inhaled deeply as she hugged him goodbye She felt his large palm pat her hair affectionately. Slowly, he gently released her, and stepped onto the deck of the boat. They shared one of their looks; his eyes told her he was going to miss her too. He stood proudly, firmly tappine ene end of his spear on the deck in a very Kimahri-goodbye. “See you soon,” she smiled, waving as the S.S. Liki pulled away from the dock, rocking slightly with the waves.

Yuna stood there with Rikku, Lulu, Wakka and Paine, and they all watched as the boat sailed away into the distance. Her friends all knew of the relationship she had with Kimahri, and she thought it was very nice of them to wake up so early to see him off and walk her home. At times, it seemed a little silly of them to pay her so much attention, but she figured that they just didn’t want her to be sad. She was so blessed to have friends like them.

“Let’s go everyone,” she said, urging them back home.

“Are you gonna cook breakfast Lulu?” Rikku asked excitedly, jumping on Wakka’s back as they started walking.

“Ey!” Wakka laughed in surprise, but began to pack her anyway. “You don need no food, you weigh too much already, ya?”

“Hey!” Rikku objected. She reached around and pinched Wakka’s tummy, eliciting a yelp out of him. “No I don’t! I’m sooo underfed! Maybe if Lulu fed me more often…” she trailed off, giving Lulu puppy dog eyes.

Yuna chuckled at her cousin’s exuberance. It was no secret that Rikku would do anything to get Lulu in the kitchen to cook for her. She was a really good cook; she’d been cooking for her, Wakka, and Chappu since they were very young. Even picky Kimahri ate her food. “I suppose I could,” Lulu replied. “But someone will need to go to the market.”

“I’ll help you, Lulu,” Yuna offered. Lulu looked sleepy, no use having her cook by herself.

“Maybe Mister Yuna will do the dishes.”

Yuna looked over at Paine, who was smirking next to her. “Maybe Mister Paine will come over and do your dishes,” she retorted under her breath, starting a full sprint to the house before she finished the sentence.

The laughter was bubbling out her, as Paine playfully chased her to the house. Yuna was just in front of the porch, when Paine’s footsteps finally caught up and she tackled her into the sand. She sat on her stomach, locking her legs around Yuna’s sides. She tried to fight back, but they were both laughing so hard and Paine was so strong that she couldn’t. Instead, she squealed as Paine threatened to put sand in her mouth. “Say it, Yuna,” Paine ordered, grinning a slightly evil smile.

“Never!” Yuna laughed, tossing her head from side to side and trying to squirm from under her. Her aggressor wanted her to say that Paine was the most beautiful woman in Spira. She always made her or Rikku say it, instead of something simple, like uncle.

Suddenly a flash of blonde appeared over Paine’s shoulder. “Leave her alone you meanie!” Paine’s grip on her hands loosened, as she and Rikku toppled to the sand in a laughing heap.

Taking advantage of the moment, Yuna stood quickly, scampering up the steps to the door and brushing the sand off her bottom. Thank goodness she hadn’t gotten too dirty. She really didn’t want to have to shower all over again before breakfast. Rikku wasn’t as lucky; Yuna watched as Paine pushed Rikku’s head down and stuffed sand in the back of her shorts. She was screaming and trying to pull the studded flap of Paine’s top of her head. It was too funny.

“You two don hurt each other now, ya?” Wakka was chuckling as he came upon the scrapping girls.

Yuna watched as he separated the two, then put them in a headlock. Lulu came to stand beside Yuna at the front door. “Kids,” she smiled, taking in the scene.

“Wakka or Paine and Rikku?”

“All of them,” Lulu smiled, turning to face her. “Why don’t you go wake Tidus? He and Wakka have practice with the Junior Aurochs in a couple of hours.”

“Okay, I’ll try and roll him out of the bed,” Yuna joked.

“Hmph,” Lulu chuckled in response. “Besides, we’ll never hear the end o if if he doesn’t get any breakfast.”

Yuna grinned. Her friend righright. Tidus was always thinking about his stomach, and he was always hungry. It was kind of funny. “You’re right, I’ll get him,” she replied, walking into the house and kicking off her sandals by the door.

Behind her, she could hear Lulu admonishing the tussling trio, as well as Paine’s threats to Wakka. They were all so silly; now Lulu was definitely going to send all three to the market, to do something constructive. Sometimes, it was like Lulu was their mother, since none of them had one. A sigh escaped her as she slowly made her way up the stairs to their bedroom. Being betrothed was wonderful, and she never thought she would be able to say that happily. Especially after the Seymour wedding incident. But she couldn’t help but wish her parents were there to see it.

Her father was a legend, and her mother was an Al Bhed woman who was shunned because of her lineage by Spira, and generally unacknowledged. But to Yuna, they were plainly the loving parents whom she missed. Her memories of them were in bits and pieces, but all were surrounded by love. Yuna often wished for a chance to speak to them again, to know if they were proud of her. Part of the personal reasons for her choice to journey on her pilgrimage had been to show them that their deaths were not in vain. That notion pushed her all through her studies, and the hard times it took for her to finally become a summoner like her father. She had always dreamed of falling in love, and raising her children just like they had raised her, with nothing but love and understanding. And she would, with Tidus.

It was still pretty unreal to her that they were getting married… Excitement rolled through her at the thought. His proposal was nothing short of amazing, brave, and perfect. The playful, happy atmosphere they’d shared had been lovely as well. Upon hearing the news, the party had erupted into cheers, and the excitement had livened up the gathering more so.

Which brought her to sleepyhead, who was currently passed out from partying so hard all night. Brother and Rikku had given him some drinks, and he was almost comatose by the end of the night. His crazy-to-sedate-to-talkative behavior had alarmed her at first, but her friends assured her that it was just from the volume of alcohol he’d consumed through the night. But even though he was very drunk, and had to literally lean on her all the way home and into bed, he still managed to be a sweetheart to her. She’d sat him on the bed and was busy pulling off his sandals and peeling off his wet clothes while he was rattling off about how he was going to be the best husband ever, and how much he loved her. It was oddly…cute.

She had looked down at her finger many times through the night, and silently acknowledged the vow she would take. She would promise her trust, love and life to him in front of everyone. Hopefully, it would be in a private ceremony in the Gagazet mountains. Such a secluded, sacred place insured no reporters or unwanted attention. Tidus had told her she could make all the decisions for the wedding, including the locale. But she knew how much he hated the cold, and hopefully he would understand her reasons for wanting to be married there.

Yuna stepped onto the top step and padded barefoot down the hall. It was still dark upstairs, but the birds outside were getting louder. Morning was coming quickly. Maybe she would get Tidus up in time to watch the sunrise with him. She quickened her pace at the thought, and made her way to the end of the hall, where she gently pushed the bedroom door open and peeked inside.

Something contracted in her chest at the sight of him lying there, prone and unaware. She padded closer to him, and slowly, quietly lowered herself to sit beside his slumbering form. She chuckled inwardly. He was knocked out. Poor baby. Maybe he should’ve taken her advice and not took taken those drinks from her evil cousins.

Her husband-to-be was on his stomach, with his arms folded under the pillow that his face was smooshed into. His long, muscular legs were wrapped up in the sheets, but she could see the toes of one foot peeking from the bottom. She reached out, slowly running her fingertips up the valley of his spine, over his neck, and into his unruly hair. He stirred, opening his eyes slowly. “Mmmm, hey,” he mum, af, after a beat.

Yuna smiled at the sight of his almost too-blue eyes, peeking from the slits of his half-closed eyelids. “Good morning, sleepyhead. How are you feeling?”

His eyes slipped shut once she began gently scratching his scalp. “Headache, but not too bad,” he replied, his voice gravelly with sleep. “Keep doin that and I’ll be even better.” A loopy smile appeared on his face as she intensified her ministrations.

“Better than last night? When you and Rikku were dancing on the tables?”

“Heh heh,” he chuckled, with that sleepy lopsided smile. “Is anyone else hungover?”

She assumed he meant suffering from the night before. “No, just you.”

He was silent, obviously remembering his behavior the night before judging by that smile. He and Rikku were going crazy at one point, jumping from table to table and laughing madly. He had tried to get her to dance with them, but she had laughingly refused, choosing to watch them instead. Somehow, he’d even convinced Lulu that it was a good idea to dance with him. On the dance floor, anyway.

“You’ve got practice today,” remireminded him, as he turned his face into the pillow.

“Mmm hmmm.” He was obviously enjoying her attention; she decided to tell him about her decision.

“I talked with Kimahri this morning about some things before he left.”

He turned his face toward her. “He left already?”

She nodded. “Not too long ago. We just got back from seeing him off.”

A furrow appeared between his eyebrows. “Aw man... How come you guys didn’t get me up?”

“I tried,” Yuna smiled. “But you wouldn’t budge.”

“Oh.” His eyes closed again. “Okay, less talking more rubbing.”

Yuna chuckled, obliging him. She had learned that Tidus was very attention starved. While he got so much social attention from the media and his fans, heed led like a baby chocobo when it came to physical attention. “Just for a little while. You have to get up soon for breakfast.”

“You’re cookin?”

“Yes, and Lulu.”

“Mmmm,” he hummed, wrapping a heavy arm around her waist. “I guess I can get up for that.”

The smile was still on her face. He was in his usual jovial mood, so she figured he would be fine with her decision. Or at least take it well. “I’ve decided where I want to have the wedding,” she began, slig heg her fingers from his forehead to the crown of his hair.

“Oh cool. Where?”

“Mt. Gagazet.”

He was suddenly wide awake, staring fully up at her. “For real?”

“Yes, silly. For real,” she chuckled. He sounded like Rikku sometimes.

He rolled onto his back, grabbing her hand and flattening it on his bare chest. “But isn’t it kinda cold up there? I mean, no a w a wuss or anything.” He squinted up at her.

Tidus really hated the cold. Yuna knew, and that was part of the reason she liked the idea of being married there so much. It would be entertaining, just to watch him. “Yes, it’s cold. But I am a white mage, remember? I can cast Nulfrost so no one will freeze.”

His mouth formed an ‘O’ shape, and he rubbed his chest with her hand, looking down at her other ringed hand. “Okay, I trust ya.” He looked up at her, a question forming. “But why on Mt. Gagazet? So Kimahri can come?”

How could she explain that she wanted to pay Kimahrck fck for her life? “Well, I want to have a Ronso wedding. It will be a great honor to him, and, and I want our wedding to be like no one else’s.” She could hear the excitement in her own voice. “I know it would be special anyway, because I am with you, but this would make it extra special for me, for many reasons.”

He listened intently, and continued to glide her hand along the smooth planes of his chest. “Okay. Whatever you want babe,” he said sincerely. Then his face brightened. “That ring looks really pretty on you.”

Yuna looked down at her shimmering finger resting on the bed beside her. “I love it,” she smiled, then looked back up at him. “I love you.”

He snorted. “Huh-uh,” he retorted, closing his eyes. “If you loved me, you wouldn’t make me marry you in frostbite country.” He was wearing a mock pout.

She leaned in and lightly kissed that pout, and noticed how it magically dissolved. “Come see the sunrise with me,” she entreated, looking down and matching her fingertips with his in her lap.

“I thought you were cooking breakfast...” he whined, twisting his legs in the blanket.

She smiled at his silly behavior. “Hush silly. Breakfast after the sunrise,” adm admonished jokingly.

His bright smile nearly melted her. “Roger,” he agreed simply, rolling off the bed to get dressed.

That night in Macalania, Tidus had described the Zanarkand sunrise with such passion; she couldn’t help but want to see it. With him. But at the time, she had forcerselrself to accept that she never would…unless it was from the Farplane. According to her supposed destiny, this wasn’t supposed to be happening. His return, her being alive, their meeting, none of it. Now, there he was, real as life, pulling on his shorts to watch the sunrise with her. And there she was, real as life, watching him with an engagement ring on her finger. But she supposed there was a first time for everything, even a first time for Fate to deviate from it’s course.

Their first sunrise together. Hopefully the first of a lifetime of sunrises and sunsets. Together.

To be continued….


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