ESCAFLOWNE WEEK 2017, Day 8: Time / Love

An Immeasurable Year

NOTE:

Yay! I made it to the last day of Escaflowne Week. These prompts were the trickiest because they were so broad and general. There were too many possibilities and I got overwhelmed by this so I couldn't decide what to go with. Every option seemed crazy or cliché.

In the end, I decided to go with something simple and cheesy. I just couldn't come up with anything better. Since most of my entries this year were relatively sad, I thought why not end the week with a happy scene for a change. And I have to admit that I had "Seasons of Love" from RENT playing on repeat while I wrote this, hence the title. Not my most inspired entry but one that I wanted to post nonetheless.

Just some happy Aston family times because I've grown more and more fond of these dorks as the years pass. This is my first time writing Chid and we know so little about him so he comes across as a pure, cinnamon roll. But I'd like to think his aunts would make more efforts to see him knowing that he was practically an orphan.

It's been a hectic week but I've enjoyed the rush and hope that I can participate this much again next year.

Enjoy and please let me know what you think! Until the next Escaflowne Week!

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Chid smiled at the people around him. Having them gathered all together was such a rare occasion so he made certain to cherish every moment in his memory. He was surrounded by his family, and the mere thought of this overwhelmed him.

After his father's death, he had grown accustomed to being alone since he was effectively an orphan. He had faced his sad predicament with dignity and grace, as he knew he would have been expected to do. He was determined to honor his parents' memory and to make sure that he would not disappoint them or his people. Despite his youth, he fulfilled his royal duties with the sense of responsibility of someone much older.

The citizens of Freid greatly admired their young Duke and always showed him their love and appreciation. Chid was also surrounded by wise and noble advisors who had his best interests, and those of Freid, at heart, so they always provided the young man support whenever he needed it. He was never truly alone but he still missed the warmth that only came with having a family.

And now, all of a sudden, his dearest wish had come true and he was not quite sure how to react. His two aunts had come to Freid to visit him and they were now doting on their only nephew in a way only aunts could do, fussing over him and showing him such warmth so as to somehow make up for the absence of his mother. The young duke was unaccustomed to being showered with so much affection and he was deeply moved by this.

Princesses Millerna and Eries had wrote to their nephew weeks ago to announce an unexpected visit. There was no occasion in particular to celebrate and no political affairs that needed to be discussed. The main motive for their visit was really to see their only nephew and to spend some time with him. Chid immediately had everything prepared to welcome his aunts' arrival.

This would also be the first time he would meet his uncle, Dryden Fassa, who had just finalized his marriage with Princess Millerna after both of them settled their differences. Having heard many good things about the man, Chid was very much looking forward to meeting him. And Dryden had not disappointed. The young duke was immediately put at ease with his uncle's congenial manner and endless charm. Dryden brought a certain energy and enthusiasm with him, showing great interest in the culture and history of Freid and showing such an eagerness to make friends with his royal nephew. Chid observed that there was clearly a great affection between Dryden and Millerna and it warmed his heart to see them so happy together.

And though he was too shy to voice his wish, he hoped that he would soon have a cousin. But as he observed the happiness between Millerna and Dryden, he had a feeling that this prospect was not too unlikely.

Millerna was extremely loving towards him and in many ways, she reminded him of his mother. She was attentive and warm, constantly talking to him and telling him about her life. She was also determined to see him healthy and happy. She also had so much to show and teach him about her own studies in medicine and other sciences and he always listened with great interest.

At first, Chid had been intimidated by his aunt Eries. Her reserve did not exactly encourage open affection and he had heard stories about how formidable she was. They had approached each other carefully but then they soon realized that they were both shy. When Eries smiled at him, Chid's heart swelled and he was able to feel the earnestness of her love despite her reserve. She spoke gently and kindly to him and treated him with a fierce protectiveness that he knew that he would always feel safe with her. She had brought many books with her and they spent many afternoons and evenings together, sharing stories. He learned so much from her and he always enjoyed the way she would tell stories, allowing him to escape into other worlds. Her voice was soothing and her presence a great comfort to him. He came to love her very dearly.

The whole family would share meals together and it would always be a lively affair. The two princesses would be extra attentive to their nephew and Dryden would tell funny stories from his many travels. They all cherished the time spent with each other, trying their best to solidify their familial bonds. After the war, they had all realized that they could not allow distance to prevent them from looking out for their family and so the two princesses, in particular, had resolved to visit their nephew at every possible opportunity.

This was only the first of several visits that the Astons would make to Freid, always with the intention of strengthening family ties and building a better relationship with their nephew. The year seemed to pass very quickly for the young duke and he sometimes wished that time would stand still so that he could better appreciate all the wonderful things that were happening.

When his aunts and uncle weren't able to visit, they constantly sent him lovely presents. Dryden would send souvenirs, interesting items or exotic foods that he found during his travels and trading. Millerna would send toys and tools from Asturia, encouraging any field that he might be interested in. And Eries would send him books on different subjects from poetry to fiction to some about the history of Gaea.

For his part, Chid tried his best to match their generosity by sending them small tokens from Freid. He was determined to show how much he cared about them and how happy they made him with their attentions. He no longer felt alone, and he was certain that wherever they were, his parents were pleased that he was left in the care of the best people in the world.

"I am truly lucky to have such a family," he thought constantly, and when the child mused on the year that had passed, one that had been more eventful than others, he smiled. So much had happened but on balance, he found that the joys outweighed the sorrows.