Night on Besaid Island was pure and black. With no artificial lighting of any kind to be found on the small island, illumination was provided only by the stars and moon. Nights were also quiet; only fiends and small animals made sound on the island which made no use of machina. On this night, however, there was no sound at all. Silence reigned over the island, shrouding it in the sensation of death and pain.
In a small hut off to the side of the temple, a single emerald green eye opened in the darkness. Without knowing how or why, she felt a terrible feeling of dread washing over her. Something bad was about to happen, or was already happening. She couldn't tell. She only knew that people she cared about were going to be hurt.
Before she could turn to awaken the man she was snuggled tightly up to, a shadow fell across her as the curtain that served as the hut's door parted. She froze where she was, willing her lover to remain motionless, willing this spectre to go away. Narrowing her eyes enough so that she could still see, and hoping that light would not reflect from them, she watched the figure in her doorway.
It was tall, human-shaped, but was wearing some sort of clothing or armor that she had never seen before. This armor, for it did not flow or move like clothing, was a light grey in the starlight, but it appeared to her that it would be white under normal light. It fully concealed the wearer from head to foot.
She knew, without knowing how she knew, that to attack this figure would mean her death. The fact that her guns were on the other side of the hut was only part of it. Squinting in the dimness, she could see that the figure had swept aside the curtain with a black object, vaguely gun-shaped, held in its right hand. She had no idea what the object was, but she dreaded it nonetheless.
Please go away, she mentally begged the figure. Leave us alone…
She heard a click, then a mechanically-filtered voice. "This one's clear. Move on to the temple." Then the figure was gone, and the curtain swished closed again.
Releasing her held breath, she slowly turned and placed a hand over her lover's mouth to prevent him from making noise when she woke him up. She leaned over so that her mouth was only inches from his ear and whispered, "Tidus, wake up. Wake up."
She only had to repeat herself twice before he stirred, mumbling incomprehensible words under her hand, looking up at her with questioning eyes. She quickly placed a finger over her own lips to indicate the need for discretion, and when he nodded, she pulled her hand away from his mouth.
"Yuna, what's wrong?" he whispered, so quietly that even she could barely hear him.
"There are men in the village," she responded, annoyed to hear the fearful quiver in her voice. She had turned her back on Yevon, been branded a traitor, destroyed Sin, held two warring factions of Spira together, destroyed a machina weapon bent on vaporizing the planet, and put to rest the despairing souls of two star-crossed lovers. Compared to that resume, a few ghostly-armored men with strange weapons shouldn't even phase her. But for some reason, the thought of facing those armored men terrified her.
Tidus knew she was afraid. He knew instinctively that those men she mentioned were there for no good. He rolled over and laid his hand on the Brotherhood, the sword that Yuna kept for him from two years earlier. Before he could lift it from the shelf, however, he felt Yuna's hand come down on his, and he looked over at her. She was shaking her head at him, and he nodded slowly.
"No. You'll die if you fight them. We have to escape."
He nodded slowly, then slid to the far side of the bed and moved into a crouch. He immediately began moving around the hut, tossing clothes and essential items into a pack. He laid the Brotherhood on their bed; it would be the last thing he grabbed before they departed.
For her part, Yuna first crossed the floor of the hut, taking care to stay to the shadows, and pulled her gun belt from its shelf before wrapping it around her waist and tightening it in place. She did not want to use them; any shot she fired would be heard from clear across the island. Quickly pulling on her half-skirt, she filled the pouches of her belt with items and ammunition, then pulled on and tied her shirt. Her armbands were stuffed between her belt and her shorts; she didn't have time to deal with them.
In about two minutes, the two of them had gathered what they needed. Picking up the Brotherhood off the bed, Tidus wordlessly approached the back of the hut where two sections of the fabric used to cover it met with a seam. As quietly and carefully as possible, he pierced the sharp tip of his sword through the seam and cut through it, slicing it open enough for the two of them to duck through and escape into the nearby woods.
Pausing only long enough to give Yuna a quick kiss, Tidus stepped out of the hut and looked around. So far, so good. There was no one in sight, and the trees were just ten feet ahead of him. Turning around, he nodded to Yuna to come out; they were almost home free.
To his left, a twig snapped, and a mechanically-filtered voice reached him. "You there! Stop!"
Without thinking twice, Tidus crossed his arms over his chest, closed his eyes, and felt the familiar energy flowing to the tips of his fingers. He gestured with his left hand toward the bone white-armored man, who froze in place as Tidus completed the Stop spell.
Yuna emerged from the hut just in time to see the man frozen, and she looked up at Tidus, who nodded and gestured toward the trees. Nodding in return, the two of them took off for the forest.
Behind them, the Stop spell was just wearing off, and they could hear the voice call out "Blast them!"
And suddenly the night around them was lit up with the scream of weapons discharge, and the red bolts crashing into the woods all around them, blinding them with their brightness, and setting the trees on fire. But they were deep enough into the woods that none of the bolts came anywhere near them.
They continued to run for what seemed like hours, until they were deep within Besaid's forests and they were certain that they had lost their pursuers. Gasping for breath, Yuna dropped to her knees on the moist soil as Tidus leaned against a nearby tree, also panting.
"What… what were those?" he croaked.
"I don't… I don't know," she gasped, gulping in air as fast as she could. "I've never seen anything like them before. Their weapons, either. It looked like they were shooting fire magic."
Tidus shook his head in reply, then opened his mouth to speak, but before he could, a chilling mechanical roar cut through the air, vibrating them straight down to their core. They both looked straight up to see four pairs of blue ovals passing overhead; the ovals appeared to be engines of some kind.
Standing and bringing her hand up to her brow to shield her eyes, Yuna squinted, and could just barely make out a ball shape with two vertical wings attached to either side by stubby pylons. The vehicles, whatever they were, were extremely hard to make out due to their dark color.
As the four vehicles disappeared behind a hill, Yuna looked down to Tidus, an expression of worry on her face. The only logical explanation that either of them could come up with, was that Spira was being invaded by some outside force.