Final Fantasy 8 Remixed Chapter 2
By Balin Drax
On the black sand beaches on the coast near the city of Trafalgar, the waves crashed again and again upon the beach, as if trying to wipe it away. It wasnt what was above the waves that was important, however; it was what was under them. In the dark water swam a lone figure. He seemed accustomed to the pull and tug of the surf, and moved with ease through the water. As he neared closer to shore, however, his stroke began to lose the power it had before.
When he was within only twenty feet of the shore, the swimmer abruptly stopped and just floated. Why do I need to go to shore? he thought Its not like I have any reason to go up there. Maybe I should just stay under here where I dont have any problems. Then he shook his head, No thats the cowards way. Its just not for me.
With that, he made his way to shore.
Trudging up onto the beach, he began to throw his swimming gear onto the nearby cement bench. Once he had rid himself of the flippers and goggles, he picked up the towel that he had placed there before his dive down under. When he had finished wiping of his faced, he looked up and saw her standing a few feet away. He had no clue where she had come from, but she was there now. She was wearing the student dress uniform of the Sandhurst Military Academy, the same academy that he attended. The bottom of the pants had been soaked through by the tide. Her brown hair was in a single, long braid that fell down her back. And he could also tell that she had been crying, as her eyes were swollen and red.
It was long moments before they spoke, and she was the first to break the silence, So Alex, I thought that I could find you here. This is the place you always come to when you want to escape from whatever problems you have. So it that what I am to you now, a mere problem to be handled by a little diving?
He accusing tone cut him deeply, but he resolved not to show it. Taking a deep breath, he ran a hand through his coal black hair, Alright, Im sorry I wasnt there for the graduation ceremony. There was a lot of paperwork that had to be done before I could transfer over to my new posting, and I had to take care of it. By the time I finished, the ceremony was over. I figured youd want to be with the other members of you new unit at the party, so I decided to come here for a while. My swimming doesnt bother you, does it?
Cut the crap Alex. Youve never let anything get in the way of what you wanted to do before. So you why would you want to start now?
Sighing, he sat down on the bench, I thought it would be for the best if we just stopped now. If we drag this out any more, its just going to prolong the pain. Lets just go our separate way now and get it over with.
Alex, I just want to know why, she said as she sat down next to him. Taking his hand in hers, she began again, You know that its always been the family tradition to marry some one from the Republican Guards. Its been done for generations. Why would you leave the unit? What could I have done to drive you so far away from me? Averting his gaze from her, he slowly pried his hand from hers. Taking a deep breath, he said, Sandra, it wouldnt have mattered if I had kept my spot with the Guards of not. We still wouldnt have been together.
Last week I was playing Drax in the officers quarters. Near the end of the game I got up to stretch my legs. When in was walking around the room is saw that the list that had all the unit the graduates were going into. I had gotten my spot just like I asked for, but you had only got on the first replacement list. So, in order for you to be in the Guard, I gave up my spot.
You did have to do that, she said, her voice quivering, I wanted to make it in myself. You didnt have to hand me your spot.
Alex shook his head, No, you see it was my success on the La Manche trial that threw off the class curve. We both know that your test scores are better than half of the Guard anyway; unit openings just fluctuate from year to year. If it hadnt been for my success, you would have been in anyway. My stepping down was just a way to fix a mistake that should have never happened.
And as for the new posting, it was the only slot I could get on short notice. But Legion Noire is a good unit, and Ill have good career, he hated to lie in the first place, and hated it even more now.
It took her a moment to gather her wits, but when she did, she managed a weak smile, It doesnt matter. We can start our own tradition now. Just come with me. Please
Alex shook his head, You might not get it now, but your family is more important than me. I know you dont feel that way now, but you will understand in time. Take my word for it. Leave now before we both get too attached.
With one last sigh, she turned and walked off down the beach. Alex sat on the bench for a long time, staring at the footprints she had left in the sand. Then he suddenly sprang to his feet and took off after her. However, he only made it ten feet or so before he tripped and fell on his face. Spitting sand out of his mouth, he looked behind him to see what had tripped him. A piece of driftwood, now broken in two pieces, lay at his feet. Slowly he rose, looking down the beach. So much for going after the girl. Picking up the two pieces, he went to sit down in the surf that was starting to roll in.
He sat back, looking up at the sky. Dont you realize Sandra that I would have messed this up sooner or later? Only by leaving now can I save you pain later. This is for the best. In a bit of fancy, he tried to put the two pieces together again. But the two pieces had been soaked by the sea water, and had swollen and become unable to fit together. In a rage, he slammed them together. All he caused was a ragged splinter to go into his hand. Cursing, he threw the two halves back into the sea, and started to suck on his wound. For you see, now we are like those two pieces of driftwood. We can never be whole ever again.