Author's Note: A big thank you to anyone who read my boring first chapter, please keep reading! It gets better , trust me! Just judge for yourselves! XP I'm hoping this chapter opens a path for the story to branch out. I have a lot of ideas and the next chapter outline is fully planned out! C: So please, continue to read!
P.S: I don't own the Final Fantasy franchise or characters, this story is purely fictional and most of it is from my head so no plagiarizing! :D
Chapter 2: Of Sendings and Encounters
"Yuna!" An enthusiastic cry boomed into the small hut. The was sun was rising at the start of a new day and along with it came a new kind of surprise. I rose from my bed groggily, dragging my bare feet to the entrance of my diminutive hut.
"Hey there, Wakka!" I smiled feeling assured and satisfied. I wanted to talk to Lulu about my plans to leave the Island, but I don't know how well she will take it. I'm even doubtful about finding a place to stay somewhere I'm not familiar with, yet there's nothing that can make me change my mind.
"Lulu's at the temple speaking to some men from Kilika, but she'll see-"
"Wait, what?" I broke him off in mid sentence when I realized he mentioned much larger isle, just a few miles north from us. Not many Kilikans like to visit Besaid as most of them have joined the Youth League, an organization formed by the Crusaders once the Eternal Calm came to be; their goal is to uncover ancient spheres or recordings of Spira's past. On the other hand, the New Yevon faction has been trying to keep the secrets of Spira to not cause any disturbance between the people. Some secrets are better not said, sometimes they cause pain and that is the reason why Besaid's elderly population has joined New Yevon.
"Ya! They were lookin' for someone, but I didn't stay long enough to know." He looked back the temple, which stood just a few steps away from my hut. His eyes squinted from the hot rays of the sun which had finally risen completely in the clear blue sky.
"I think I'll go check, just so there aren't any disputes." I said softly and retreated into my room, I scavenged through my wardrobe until I found a casual dress. Quickly, I put it on while rushing to find a mirror. "I hope they're not trying to recruit for the Youth League..." I muttered to myself, finally speed walking out of my hut thinking of those men who have come before to convince youngsters into joining the ex-crusaders.
The temple was made of stone with a pale shade, the tropical storms had washed off the chromatic designs that were once glorified by the Yevonites more than ten years ago. Once I approached the grand entrance, I stopped to scan an unfamiliar figure. It was an enormous man, almost scary looking. He had short brown hair, half-closed eyes and square-shaped face; a tall and muscular man, wearing two, adorned with iron buttons, brown belts on his chest. Lulu was speaking to him, so he's got to be the guy from Kilika. But weren't there other men with him?
"Please! You must help!"
"I'm sorry, but she's not ready for something like this..."
I could hear Lulu and the big man talking, he sounded very desperate and I surprisingly felt sorry for him. He didn't seem like a bad person, so I decided to approach them, although I know she won't like my intrusion; taking a reluctant step after another, my shy aura had not gone unnoticed.
"Lulu, is anything amiss?" I slowly stood by her, and my attention turned on the awkward man before us. He scratched the back of his head, and from the looks of it, it was as though he had been sobbing.
"Yuna, this is Barthello. He's here from Kilika to request for your services."
Lulu looked down, her tone was disapproving in the hopes of keeping me from a practice I knew she despised.
"You need me?" I looked at Barthello wide eyed to receive a miserable nod. "Well, can I know who...?"
"Yes," He took a breath and continued visibly uncomfortable, "it's my mum! She was attacked by fiends from the forest!" He broke into a fit of sobs, and exchanging glances with Lulu I came near him. With a dainty touch, his sobbing stopped abruptly as he looked into my remorseful eyes.
"It's okay...I'll make sure she reaches the farplane happily." I gave him a cheerless smile trying to understand his position. It wasn't hard, after all I have no mother and father.
I spoke to Wakka on the way to Kilika, in a ship that was fairly small but was cozy for my preferences. It was just yesterday when I met Barthello and agreed to help him, just to make sure I sent his mother before she became a fiend herself, I set out the morning after.
However. in the back of my head, I wondered if Lulu was okay with this. She's an exceptional overseer, hence any ache of mine will never be overlooked. I was so apprehensive of the subject, it's a fact as each time I tried to spend time on the deck I got easily sea sick. A rarity, but the thought of my first real sending sent chills running down my spine. After learning for years from the village elders, I managed to learn and understand how much energy this ritual takes. I willingly accepted my duties, so i won't let myself down.
The prevalent routine during my walks around the village were receiving compliments from the villagers like, "You've got talent," or, "It's in your blood," yet I never took he compliments to heart. A sending is not a talent, or a privilege for that matter. It's a help for others, though it can leave scars and be a heavy weight on me. I wouldn't want anyone to be a sender, unless they're pure of heart and wish to do it with good intentions. It's more than just a sense of duty.
"Kilika is up ahead!" the captain roared through his small cabin on the top deck, generating a smile; it was mostly directed to myself, still feeling nervous, as I mentally prepared myself for what was to come.
The hot-headed young man ran through a crowd of people and into a plaza, feeling the action, the enthusiasm, and commotion of the screaming fans made him feel powerful. Even if it came from the stadium a few miles in back of him.
The Luca air was refreshing compared to the slight winds that passed every few days in the all- embracing city streets of Zanarkand. Although the memory is faint, he remembered being an infantile kid sneaking into the stadium without a ticket and seeing his first ever blitzball game. Watching the heated match he found the determination to be like the players he admired with his heart.
His spiky blond hair barely swung itself from side to side as it danced with strong gusts of wind. "Ah~" He sighed, but the moment of relaxation ended the minute a young man smacked him on the back of his head.
"Ow! What the-" The athletic boy looked around, displaced about what just occurred. Disgruntled, he came across the one accountable for his irked attitude.
"Aw c'mon ,Tidus! I was just playin'" The older boy snickered to himself with a dorky smile, then leaning over to lay an arm on Tidus's shoulder. The wonderful sight of seagulls above the clear blue waters. They sky was just as clear, and the sun's rays were hotter now that it was noon.
"You are such a child sometimes." Tidus chuckled and continued to look around in awe.
"Seems like you're enjoying Luca. I gotta say, it's a nice town compared to Zanarkand. But!- since you like the fame so much I guess Zanarkand will always be number one." He folded his arms in front of his chest and looked at Tidus with a mischievous smile.
"Sure is, Gippal!" He stretched as the two walked around the plaza in silence.
The two were an odd pair, and the infamous Gippal had looks that were rather unusual than handsome. His hair was just as blond, maybe even a lighter shade, and it was styled in an odd manner for it stood up in spikes high above his head. An eye-patch covered his right eye, and his skin was tan but not as tan as Tidus' who took a darker Cinnamon shade. The color of his eyes explained much of his outgoing personality, the green swirls were a sign of an Al Bhed. Although he's a year older than Tidus, he has always been immature and child-like. It might sound like bad news, but coming from Gippal it was expected; his relaxed and laid back style made the mood livelier.
Tidus, on the other hand, was as much of a dude, nevertheless he knew his limits; turning more serious when things get hectic. Despite his carefree ways, Tidus cloaks a troubled past under an appearance of self-pride,and a more mature and caring character.
"So how about a night out in Luca's most popular cafe? Mister hot-shot!" Gippal punched him playfully while sneaking a few looks at the female blitz fans with skimpy outfits passing by the nearby bars; the buildings were bunched together in a more abstruse side of town.
" I would have to think about that!" Tidus mocked him in return, earning a crackle from Gippal who didn't bother to make eye contact.
The luminosity of the descending sun was enough to make Yuna's eyes half close. She bared the extreme grief of a son who watched from the dry surface of the docks, while she stood above teary water. Her feet ever so lightly began to take steps, one behind the other while the wind caressed her cheeks, making them a darker shade of red. Breathing in slowly with each swift movement, she danced along with the wind. First, swirling in place, the letting her baton become in sync with the cries of the dead bellow her feet. A lone soul became millions of shining pyreflies, each dancing to the rhythm of Yuna's body. The minuscule lights that floated above and around her numb body were starting to give off their effect. Through hazy lights and the cold softness of the water under her feet, she was lost in a trance between the farplane and Killika's bay. Through her mind ran images of the once living woman, from her life as a newborn to her last hours in the body of an senior. Her memory brought tears into Yuna's eyes, tears that were never shed. An abrupt tugging was felt jerking her from the inside, yet she never panicked. Instead, Yuna let the tugging become stronger and stronger until she stood before an opaque silhouette.
"Go on. There's nothing more your son could ask for, he wouldn't want you to be a fiend, now would he?" Yuna's shy, delicate voice rang into the old woman's ears like a lullaby. The woman bowed, gesturing a sign of peace and acceptance through the traditional Yevon bow.
"Miss Yuna, how could I ever repay you?" Barthello knelt before the overwhelmed sender, a smile shone upon her perfect face.
"It's okay, sir-"
"Just call me Barthello!" He gladly offered,
"Barthello, there's no need to pay me. It's my wish to help you."
"Oh! Thank you, thank you my Lady!" He stood up and bowed for the tenth time, making Yuna giggle from his silly adoration for her.
"No problem!" Yuna waved as she boarded the S.S. Winno. The ship was significantly larger with more passengers aboard it than on her way to Killika.
"Um, Wakka?" She tapped his shoulder, distracting his attention from his blitz team, the Besaid Aurochs. Wakka, being the coach and leader of the group, was always bound and determined to winning games. His motto was, "Do your best, guys! We gonna win this, ya?" However, they haven't won a game in years. Sometimes, it saddens her to see him dispirited when they lost.
He gestured the guys to get up and go then turned to face her, "What's the matter?" A welcoming smile upon his cheeky face was enough to make her happy as well.
"If I may ask, where are we going?"
"Oh, we're heading to Luca! We're facing the Luca Goers for a chance in the upcoming blitz tournament. Still, I'm not sure how the guys'll do this time, ya?" He walked off to his team mates again, probably not wanting to touch the subject of loosing.
The thought of going to Luca brought her spirits up after the sending and she kept thinking to herself while staring out at the horizon from the lower deck, I'm actually excited to watch a blitzball game. I want to walk the streets of Luca like I used to with my dad when we would visit, I remember that one time he bought me a moogle. It had black buttons for eyes and it's tongue stuck out, giving a cute impression to the three year old I once was.
A young girl with swirling green eyes ran back and forth the massive ship, around the ruins of a deserted and depressing city that once stood under storm clouds.
"Suja ed, ajanouha! Fa ryja y zup du tu rana!-(Move it, everyone! We have a job to do here!)-" She yelled through the tops of her lungs, a squeaky shriek that made other green eyes roll.
"Ma'am, we have the data you asked!" A younger boy whose clumsy attitude and slow demeanor showed signs of a rookie Al Bhed on board of a salvage ship.
"E ymnayto dumt oui! Lymm sa Rikku, yht knayd! Huf fa lyh veyhmmo ku Home!-(I already told you! Call me Rikku, and great! Now we can finally go Home!)-" She smiled at the young boy with a thumbs up, then hurried herself to the near elevator, her permeable diving suit squeaked with each step.
"BROTHER!" She barged into the small cabin with a deafening ruckus, consequently making him fall off the captain's chair after sitting there in a daze.
"Kaaw Rikku, lyh'd oui crid ib vun uhla!- (Geez Rikku, can't you shut up for once!)-" Brother sat back on his station as captain, expertly handling buttons and levers that maneuvered the machina.
"Just steer! Cid's waiting for us at Home, and we finally managed to retrieve some rare fiend data." Her high pitched voice contradicted how much more mature she was compared to Brother. The two siblings bantered on their way Home, the literal home to all Al Bheds in Spira. Settled in the middle of Bikanel Island, the desert area is home to a machina loving race that faces persecution for as long as it can remember.
"Fryd dra ramm ec dryd...?-(What the hell is that...?)" Brother's eyes narrowed trying to focus on a large creature a considerable distance from their ship. It looked like it had tentacles, for its figure was spread out in an undefinable shape.
"Oh no..." Rikku gasped to herself, as she realized the great danger they were in. She ran inadvertently to an encased red button, after a nervous struggle, she managed to hit the button. It sent an alarm throughout the ship. The siren sent the workers under a panic, but soon they calmed down when they heard the young captain's voice through the loud speaker.
"Ajanouha pa bnabynat vun yddylg! Drana'c y keyhd Ulduveaht ib yrayt!-(Everyone be prepared for attack! There's a giant Octofiend up ahead!)-" She rushed out of the cabin after giving Brother one last determined look.
"Where's my weapon stash?" She asked herself, scrambling through chest box.
"Rikku!" The young boy from before ran to her down a steel bridge, "Here!" He handed her a thick belt with small containers. Each was a separate mixture that would soon serve to prepare bombs with.
"Thanks, kiddo!" She smiled at the boy who did the same in return. With admiration, he watched as she stood up in a proud stance while arranging the belt around her slim waist. Sliding it down swiftly until it stopped at her hips, she took two mixtures; one was a liquid and the other was a shimmery type of dust, "Here goes nothing..." She muttered to herself, immersing into deep concentration. She mixed the two substances until her test tube was full to the brim.
"Jackpot! Zesso," The young boy straightened like a little soldier when he heard his name, "take cover. This bomb here is very powerful." She sent off the boy, wondering if it wasn't too late to abandon ship. Her thoughts were shaken away when there was a tremor below her feet. A sign that the monster had made contact with the ship.
"Darn! I gotta move!" She scolded herself for day dreaming in such situation, and running through longs tunnels of pipes with spontaneous fits of steam, she made sure her goggles were placed correctly over her eyes. Exasperated, she reached the outside of the ship, feeling the cold air from their surroundings smack her now perspiring face.
"Rikku! Fryd yna oui tuehk?-(Rikku! What are you doing?)-" Brother yelled through the loud speakers, surprised but mostly in dismay to watch his younger sister try to fight a terrorizing monster such as the Octofiend.
Unfazed by Brother's pleads through the loud speaker, Rikku found strength in the people she knew she had to protect.
"Take this!" She yelled, taking a step on the ledge of the deck for impulse, she made a jump. Soaring through the air, Rikku didn't waist any time. The bomb that was once stashed in her belt securely now flew over the large fiend along with her helpless body. Although the bomb was very powerful, she wasn't stupid enough to only have one mode of attack. Along with that bomb, another two grenades accompanied it in a catatonic explosion.
Brother felt all his air being knocked out of his lungs, yet not before he shrieked at the sight of his sister disappearing in a cloud of flames and the salvage ship being thrown completely out of orbit.