Terra: Part II Chapter 5
Terra saw that Shadow was wearing his shroud the next morning and felt her spirits drop.
Edgar noticed. He wrapped an arm around her waist and place a couple of kisses on the back of her neck as she tore down the tent. This was but the first night of many, soul light. Do not give up.
She nodded with a deep breath, sent him a quivering smile, and then watched him as he made his way to Shadow. One or two intense discussions were nowhere near enough to help Shadow make such an important decision. She had to be patient. Terra focused back on the tent. It would be hard, but she was willing to see it through. Just as Shadow had done for her on countless occasions.
The camp was packed up, the chocobos were loaded, and then the group set off for Nikeah once more. The pace wasnt quite as maniacal has it had been the previous day and that instantly raised Terras hopes. Shadow actually appeared to be in a thoughtful and quiet mood. Interceptor had noticed the change as well and continued to send questioning glances toward not only his master, but Terra as well. She tried to give him a reassuring smile, but how did one know whether or not a dog was reassured?
She chuckled under her breath and as she brushed a stray ringlet from her forehead, she noticed Edgars adoring glance. He winked at her and she flushed, her eyes twinkling their response before she looked away. He had been a constant source of encouragement and strength. A giver of understanding and compassion at the exact moment she needed it. His wisdom amazed her and caused her heart to grow closer to him than she could have thought possible. Saying that she loved him was no longer enough. She hadnt lived long enough to know what word could possibly describe the feelings she held for him.
And each day brought a new discovery of who he was.
She looked up and caught Edgars amused expression. Hmm? What? Im sorry. Were you saying something?
No, but our traveling companion did.
Terra changed her gaze to Shadow and blushed as she stammered out an apology. Im sorry, Shadow. I didnt hear you.
I have a favor to ask you.
Terra looked over at Edgar, who was still smiling with mild amusement, and then refocused her eyes on Shadow. Sure. What is it?
Would you and Edgar go on ahead? So that you are there in Thamasa with Relm before I arrive?
Sure. I suppose we could do that. Edgar?
Edgar shrugged, his eyes clearly holding mild confusion. I do not foresee a problem, Shadow, but I am curious as to the reason.
Shadow said nothing. He simply moved away, Interceptor tagging along behind him with what almost seemed to be reluctance. Edgar and Terra watched him in silence, and then turned to look at each other.
Do you suppose? Could he be considering your idea?
I I dont know. Maybe. Terras brows wrinkled together. Do you think he could be?
I suppose anything is possible, especially from someone as mysterious as Shadow. It does give one cause to wonder.
Did you see Interceptors reaction? Terra asked as they prodded their chocobos to a slow walk. He wasnt too happy about something.
Yes, I had noticed. Edgar pulled his chocobo close enough to hers that he was able to rest a hand lovingly on her knee, his thumb caressing small circles on it. Shadows favor has become a wondrous opportunity for me to spend as much time with you as possible. It seems we shall have a second honeymoon, my little Esper angel.
Terra covered his hand with hers and sent him an innocent glance. I didnt even know our first one was over.
Edgar smiled, his hand releasing his grip on her knee to adjust his hold on the reins of the chocobo. It purred. Now that is truly the most wonderful statement I have heard pass from your lips.
* * *
They arrived in Nikeah a few days later. Terra and Shadow had not shared another twilight conversation and Edgar had been avoided, much to his surprise. Any surprise or disappointment had been easily put aside, however, as he and Terra shared many a moonlight rendezvous, both outside the circle of the campfires light and in the cozy closeness of their tent. While these well-timed escapes had been originally for the sole purpose of experiencing a private and intimate moment, the two had found themselves cuddling together in the soft darkness as they discussed their traveling companions possible decision held so closely to himself.
The time together had given Terra exactly what she had needed to accept Shadows decision of secrecy.
Now, the trio was on the Nikeah dock getting ready to temporarily part company. Shadow removed a pouch from somewhere on his person and handed it to Terra. She stared down at it for a long moment before catching Shadows guarded eyes.
Give that to her. Tell her that he will not be back. Tell her that he met his match at the Coliseum. Tell her that tell her anything you believe she will accept as the truth. Shadow knelt and rest a hand on Interceptors head, then straightened and gestured to the massive beast. Tell her that Interceptor has no home and that it was Shadows dying wish that she should take him.
D-dying wish? Terras throat tightened and she felt Edgar rest a comforting arm around her waist. Y-youre going to
Shadow has no purpose. The Empire is gone. Ledo is dead. My wife is avenged. What else is there for him to do but fade into the existence that was his name?
Shadow turned and lost himself in the crowd, Terra and Edgar silently staring after him. After a moment, Terra turned to face Edgar with tear-filled eyes. Did he mean that hes going to die? Or that hes going to be Clyde? I cant tell. I dont know what I should believe.
Edgar continued to stare off in the direction Shadow had taken. I do not know, Terra. Perhaps he himself does not yet have the answer.
Terra changed her gaze to the pouch. Relm will be heartbroken.
She is young, Terra, and her heart will mend. Edgar changed his gaze to his beautiful wife and lifted her chin. Come, spirit light. Let us away.
Terra smiled slightly and allowed herself to be guided to the ferry. As they put out to sea, Terra looked back to the dock as she clutched the pouch to her chest. Dont forget about her again, she whispered. Come home, Clyde. Come home.
Interceptor whined and leaned a shoulder against her leg.
* * *
Shadow watched the ship until it disappeared into the distance. Then, he turned and went into the shop, removing his shroud before the door had closed behind him.
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