All the Time in the World
By Deona Lindholm
Note: One of the characters in this story, Eirea, I am trying to get into any sequel to Suikoden 2...if they'll listen and if they will make a sequel. If they do, I'm introducing her. If not, oh well. She is my creation. Oh, I named the hero of Suikoden 2 Rian.
Luc sighed sadly as he was returning to his chambers in Leknaat's Shrine, tired from another day of training...but that was the only thing he'd admit to his mentor about being tired from.
It had been six months since Rian had scored the final victory against Highland, freeing its people from the hold the Beast Rune had on them. Although most of the members in the Liberta Army has resumed their lives as if they had not been interrupted...there were some notable exceptions.
Rian had lost his long-time friend, Jowy, as well as his sister, Nanami. The last he had heard, the young leader had disappeared for parts unknown with the promise to return one day.
Klaus had also lost his father, Kiba, in the same invasion of Rockaxe that Nanami had died in.
And Luc himself...
He shook his head, trying to keep his own loss out of his mind, but to no avail.
Memories of a young girl that he had grown fond of who was in the Liberta Army sprang into being.
"I guess it wasn't just McDohl's Soul Eater that causes personal sadness," he whispered, "But Rian's, Jowy's and mine as well...All the 27 True Runes are cursed. A True Rune on my hand, and I couldn't do the right thing to save her..."
Rian, Nanami, Futch, Sasuke, Luc and Mazus were standing near the stairs that would lead them to the Matilda flag that they were supposed to burn down. The group had to stop a moment to rest, even Luc was out of breath.
"We're almost there," Mazus said to them as soon as he could breathe a little easier.
Right behind them, they could all heard a group of mixed Highland and Matilda soldiers coming after them.
Someone had said something about the Highland soldiers coming after them.
"We'll stop them here," Futch said, "Lord Rian, Lady Nanami, go after that flag!"
Nanami nodded and said, "Okay. Be careful, everyone!"
A strong chill went through Luc as she said that and he suddenly had the feeling that something horrible was going to happen.
"Be careful now..." came out in a softer tone than even he expected.
If we all live through this attack on Rockaxe, he thought, I'll tell Nanami the truth...tell her that I...
He quickly shook his head and focused his attention on the coming enemy troops ahead.
Luc was startled by a knock on his door. He looked out the window and saw that the sun had just finished setting.
"She's not usually late," he muttered and heard a more insistant knock, nearly barking, "Come in."
The door opened to admit a young girl about his age and height with black hair in a braided crown. He never thought of such things, but Luc admitted to himself and to Leknaat that the young girl was rather beautiful. She was normally cheerful, which was a comfort to him, but this time, she was very pale and shaking.
Worried, he asked, "Eirea, what's wrong? You look sick."
"Mind if I sit down?" she asked.
"O-of course. Go ahead," he replied and led her to a chair, "What happened to you?"
Eirea looked at him with eyes of terror and death before saying, "That Rune...the one they were all looking for since the end of the Scarlet Moon Empire...my aunt finally found it. Right after my chores and training for the day was done, some men came for me to tell me and to perform the ceremony..."
His eyes widened as he exclaimed, "Not the missing half of the Gate Rune!"
She nodded and said, "Yes, that Rune. I tried to reject the ceremony, but they kept talking about it being the duty of my aunt's family to accept it and did all but pin me down while they attached it."
Luc winced, not wanting to picture it even in his mind, and said, "It's crazy...they all know what you think about that Rune and what could happen to you. But they did it anyway...not even your aunt, Leknaat, knows if the half that was Windy's was tainted by evil or not. If she does, she isn't telling."
"That's why I'm late, sorry," she said, her voice shaking a bit now.
Both got up and he held her tightly, saying, "It's okay, really. We don't have to go anywhere tonight if you don't want to. I quite understand, Eirea."
She smiled a little and said, "You're really sweet when you want to be, Luc...but no, I want to get as far away from here as I can."
He nodded and simply stood there for a few moments, then she said, "Now I know what it must have been like when the people in Harmonia stuck the True Wind Rune on you."
Eirea was the only person that Luc trusted enough, other than Leknaat, to tell about his past...his true past, including about High Priest Sasarai.
She could feel him making a face at that and added, "Sorry...I know you don't like being reminded of it."
"I've been reminded about it a lot lately...Eirea, Sasarai was in the war, fighting alongside Luca Blight."
She turned pale and said, "Luc, let's get out of here...please."
He nodded, asking, "How about you pick where this time?"
She simply smiled a little, though sadly, and whispered the destination.
On a now deserted island, two young people suddenly appeared within a glowing, blue orb. To possibly the animals, the sight of humans after many years of being alone would seem very unusual.
"This is a beautiful place," the young woman said, "You used to live here, Luc?"
"Yes...that is, until the Gate Rune War, as it's called nowadays," he replied, then added softly, "And yes, it is beautiful...as are you."
She laughed a little and said, looking at the True Rune on her hand, "That's funny...because I sure feel ugly inside."
Luc sighed sadly, thinking, This irritates me a bit, but hurts more...why can't Eirea see that I love her?
"Are you okay? You look like you're going to cry," he heard her ask.
"Just...too many reminders of the past lately," he replied, "And I'm worried about the Beast Rune. After the Highland Capital collapsed, no sign was found of it. Eirea...I have something for you."
"Oh? What is it?" she asked, curious.
"I was waiting until your birthday...but I think it'd be better if I give you these now," he said and took something out of a pocket and opened his hand.
In his hand were a pair of white gloves.
Eirea looked at them carefully, then smiled.
"So that's why you asked for hand measurements. That's really sweet of you, Luc...for a lot of reasons."
He smiled at her and handed the gloves to her.
As she put them on, she asked, "Are you feeling better? I mean about Nanami."
"A little, I guess," he replied, "But not much. It still hurts that she died because I didn't follow a gut instinct I had..."
Eirea looked surprisingly irritated and said, "There's something you should know, Luc...Aunt Leknaat didn't want me to tell you, but I will anyway."
"What didn't she want me to know?"
She paused for a moment then said, "Nanami's alive."
He looked at her in shock.
"Doctor Huan lied when he said that she had perished...she merely wanted to step out of the picture for the rest of that war, so that Rian could focus on invading Highland without worrying about her," she explained.
"Then where did she go?"
"She, Jowy and Rian left to explore the world...just like McDohl."
For a moment, she was afraid that he would be angry at her until he said, "I...I'm glad you told me. I understand why Leknaat wanted that to stay a secret...but I'm not going to chase after her. And don't worry, I won't tell that you told."
She looked relieved at that and looked up at the sky after sitting down on the sand.
"I'm not worried about that. After all, you of all people can certainly keep a secret," she replied, "And so can I."
He sat beside her and smiled, saying, "I'm glad I can trust you."
She chuckled and asked, "After all, what are friends for, eh?"
Outwardly, he chuckled with her, but inside it hurt a bit at the same time.
"I wish I could stay out here forever..." she said with a sigh after a long while.
"I agree," he answered softly but sadly, "But we do have to go back. But...we can always come back here, you know? We literally do have all the time in the world."
At least the gloves will also help keep her mind off of the Rune, he thought and helped her up after a few minutes more.
When he did, she still looked rather sad about the whole mess and she said, "I..I don't know what I'd do if I wound up like Aunt Windy...even worse if I attacked you..."
Luc held her close and said, "Don't worry, Eirea. No matter what happens, I'll stay by you. Always..."
She smiled a little and said as they disappeared in a blue sphere, "Thanks, Luc..."
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