AUTHOR'S NOTE: Well, if I manage to update this on September 1st like I planned to then it's been three years since I started this story… AND NOW IT'S THE LAST CHAPTER. (EDIT. Because the website derped for writers this got uploaded a day late. NOT. MY. FAULT. JUST SAYIN.)
This was the first fanfic I ever wrote and it's really important to me, and I'm so happy you guys all seem to like it; you have no idea how much that means to me.
HOWEVER. This is not the end of Sakura's story! You shall see what I mean… Heeheehee :3
Thank you to Stratos263, kaylabear1, fanficlove2014 and Haruno for reviewing the last chapter!
This chapter is dedicated to EVERY SINGLE PERSON who reads this story and enjoys it. Thank you all so much!
DISCLAIMER: Final Fantasy X, its characters, locations and plotlines are owned by Square Enix. I do not claim to own any of these. However, I do own my original character Sakura, also known as Suki. If you wish to use her in any form of media then please ask my permission first.
Chapter 53 – This is My Story
Running through Sin was terrifying. We didn't know what we were looking for but there seemed to be a clear path between the thick clouds which covered the ground. For all we knew there would be a quicker path to reach Jecht but we were too afraid that someone would get lost if we ventured into the clouds. So instead we followed the path, feeling quite relieved at the lack of Sin Spawn although we knew that fighting Yu Yevon itself was going to be even more difficult that fighting the smaller monsters.
"It's warm…" Yuna thought out loud after we'd been walking in silence for a while. "I didn't think it would be so warm here."
"Yeah, it's kind of weird," I answered. "Although this doesn't feel too warm to us, right Rikku?"
"You're not wrong there!" Rikku smiled. "Home's desert was much hotter than this! This is nice and cool for the two of us."
"What's the weather like in Zanarkand?" Yuna turned to Tidus.
"Well the city is on the sea so it can be warm in the summer, but in the winter it's freezing," he grinned back at us before glancing at Kimahri. "Not Mount Gagazet levels of freezing though."
Kimahri cracked a smile. "Mount Gagazet is coldest place in Spira. Kimahri was impressed that Rikku and Sakura survived up there."
"What, did you think we would turn into icicles up there?" Rikku asked, playfully punching Kimahri on the shoulder.
"Well considering we learnt that some Ronso can use fire magic we could have had Biran or Yenke unfreeze you," Lulu teased.
"I think I'd rather have you unfreeze us Lulu," I admitted, smiling.
"I believe Lulu would at least have better aim than a Ronso," Auron agreed, actually cracking a smile.
"Um…guys?" Wakka's voice cut through the giggles. "What's that?"
We hadn't been watching where we were going and all of a sudden there was a huge staircase in front of us. I looked over at Tidus and he was staring up to the top of the stairs.
"Sir Jecht…?" Yuna murmured what we were all thinking.
We all nodded to each other and walked up the stairs together with our weapons out, but what we saw at the top of the stairs was not what we expected.
Jecht wasn't there.
But Seymour was.
"Tysh ed," I cursed loudly, barely managing to stop myself from just throwing my sword at him.
Seymour laughed loudly at our obvious frustration and anger.
"Don't you ever give up?!" Tidus yelled, his hand clenching tightly around the hilt of his sword.
"Sin has chosen me," Seymour hissed. "I am part of Sin, I am one with Sin forever. Immortal!"
Tidus rolled his eyes. "Sin just absorbed your pyreflies," he sighed.
"Yeah! You weren't chosen for anything , eteud," Rikku stuck her tongue out.
"I will learn to control it from within," Seymour glared at Rikku. "I have all the time in the world!"
I nudged Tidus. "I'm bored now," I said simply. "Can we kick his ass properly this time please?"
"With pleasure," Tidus agreed, glaring at Seymour.
Seymour began to transform. "You should thank me Tidus!" he laughed. "Your death means your father's life."
"Uh oh…" I murmured, knowing that Seymour was trying to rattle Tidus and it probably worked. As I suspected Tidus growled and ran at him, slashing down at his now distorted form with his sword. Seymour was now a giant blue-silver silhouette that was almost transparent. Behind him hovered four large discs, each containing four different coloured circles.
Tidus continued to slash at Seymour before jumping back and nodding to Wakka. Just like with Sin, Wakka threw his Blitzball in the air as Tidus leapt up and kicked it hard right at Seymour. Before Tidus had landed Auron, Kimahri and myself had also ran in and attacked, Rikku throwing grenades in to cover us.
The discs behind Seymour all spun until the red circle on each was next to him. Seymour then cast a four very powerful fire spells at us which we only just managed to dodge out of the way of.
"The circles!" I realised, calling out to the others as Lulu cast an ice spell in response. "The colours show which spell he's going to cast!"
"Well spotted Sakura," Auron smiled before running forward again and crashing his blade into Seymour.
"There is no salvation for the damned," Seymour muttered darkly. "Sleep in eternal darkness!"
Suddenly Yuna stepped forward, her staff raised.
"I'll handle him," she said quietly so we all scuttled back. Before I was out of earshot Yuna looked round and smiled slightly. "Sorry about this Suki."
I frowned in confusion as Yuna twirled her staff around. All of a sudden a giant hook flew down out of nowhere and plunged into the ground. I tried to scream but all that came out was a squeak.
Anima was dragged from the ground and I fell to the ground. Kimahri hauled me upright but he had to hold me steady so I didn't fall again.
"W…w…when the hell did you get Anima?!" I screamed at Yuna.
Yuna didn't hear me because Anima roared just as I screamed.
"You would oppose me as well?" Seymour asked, his voice actually cracking slightly. "So be it!"
I bit my lip slightly as I remembered that Anima had been Seymour's mother.
With a nod from Yuna, Anima roared again. Black smog started to seem from her very skin. The air around us turned very cold. Suddenly Anima broke free of her chains and began to punch Seymour over and over again. Although Anima was even more terrifying out of her bindings the sound of Seymour grunting over and over again made me crack a somewhat sadistic smile.
When Anima stopped literally punching the life out of Seymour, he was doubled over in pain. The discs behind Seymour crumbled and disappeared as Seymour faded back to his normal appearance. Yuna waved her staff and dismissed Anima as Seymour stumbled and fell to his knees.
"Now Yuna! Send him!" Wakka called.
"Right!" Yuna replied, running forward to where Anima had been standing and began to dance.
As the pyreflies began to rise from Seymour's body he lifted his head to look at Yuna. "So it is you after all who will send me," he sighed heavily. "But even after I am gone Spira's sorrow will prevail."
Seymour finally faded and Yuna fell to the floor. Tidus ran up and held her tightly and she let out a huge breath. Tidus smiled reassuringly before he looked up at the pyreflies. "Sin will be right behind you," he said confidently.
Further through Sin lay what looked like old ruins. We ran through them, getting fairly lost at times, before we came to a huge tower which looked like it was made up of hundreds of pipes. The door swung open and we all stepped through, Tidus leading the way, this time fairly sure we would see what we expected to see.
Inside the tower was what looked like the ruins of a Blitzball stadium, and standing on a podium right in the middle of it was a man, bare-chested, with his arms crossed and back to us.
Auron and Tidus both stepped forward.
"You're late Auron," Jecht said shortly.
"I know," Auron replied calmly.
Jecht turned around and for the first time in many many years he looked his son in the eye.
"Hey," Jecht smiled.
Tidus tried to reply but he just made a bit of a strange noise. I smiled sadly. He was probably more emotional than he thought he would be.
"Heh. You got tall but you're all bones," Jecht chuckled. "You eating right boy?"
Tidus didn't reply. Rikku and I both looked at him but I couldn't read the expression on his face.
"You've really grown," Jecht said, his voice softer.
"…Yeah," Tidus finally replied, looking down. "But you're still bigger."
Jecht chuckled again. "Well…I am Sin y'know."
Tidus looked up. "That's not funny."
Jecht looked down as if he was embarrassed for a moment before looking back up at Tidus. "Well then…I mean…you know… Let's end this."
"I hate you."
The tears were evident in Tidus's voice.
"I know," Jecht said, smiling faintly. "You know what you have to do?"
Tidus looked back up at his father. "Yeah," he replied.
"I…I can't hear the Hymn so well anymore," Jecht said. "Pretty soon I'm going to be Sin, completely. I'm glad you're here now. One thing though. When it starts I won't be myself anymore. I won't be able to hold myself back. I'm sorry-"
"That's enough!" Tidus yelled, tears running silently down his cheeks. "Let's finish this, okay?"
Jecht looked shocked but he nodded. "You're right."
He turned and walked slightly away from us before turning back to face us. "Well then, let's go!"
Light from the ground began to fly up and merge with Jecht. He staggered and began to fall backwards. He was about to fall off the ledge and into what looked like lava below us. Suddenly Tidus began to run towards his father, arms outstretched to grab him.
He missed by mere inches.
Tidus stood frozen where he was, breathing heavily. Suddenly there was a loud rumbling. Everyone looked round confused, even Auron.
Light began to fly towards us from all around the ruins, and it was only then I realised the ruins mirrored the image of Zanarkand that Seymour had shown us. Tidus's Zanarkand.
With no warning a massive claw latched onto the ledge where Jecht had just fallen. Tidus only just managed to jump back in time as a giant creature pulled itself up. It was shaped like a man, only it was around 9 metres tall. Instead of hands it had claws. Its eyes shone bright blue, and it had horns wrapped around its head. The only indication that it was Jecht was the crest of the Zanarkand Abes etched into his chest, just like Jecht had.
"I promise this'll be quick!" Tidus yelled. "Hit me with all you've got dad!"
Auron, Tidus and I all ran in to slash at the monster's chest before suddenly it began to shudder. The crest on its chest began to glow. The hilt of a sword appeared from the crest and when the monster pulled it out it was almost bigger than it was.
"Well," I muttered. "This just keeps getting better and better."
Wakka rolled his eyes at me before casting a spell on his ball and flinging it. When it hit, the monster growled and attempted to slash down at Wakka with his sword. Luckily Wakka was faster than the monster and managed to jump out of the way. As he did Lulu and Yuna pelted the creature with blizzard spells, Rikku and I throwing in grenades when we could.
It was a hard fight, and we had to be really careful, but eventually the monster was visibly weakened. I looked to Tidus and he was shaking his head ever so slightly. He couldn't do it. He wouldn't do it. He couldn't deliver the final blow to his father.
Auron placed his hand on Tidus's shoulder. Tidus looked round and Auron nodded once. Tidus hesitated for a moment but he nodded and stepped back. Auron ran towards the monster.
"I'm sorry," he said before he slammed his katana down onto the creature.
The monster rammed it's sword into the ground before collapsing, causing the whole platform to shake. It then disappeared in an explosion of pyreflies, and Jecht was left standing there looking on the verge of death. He began to fall forward and Auron was about to run to his aid but someone else beat him.
Tidus ran to his father and dropped down to his knees to support him, holding him close before he gently turned him around so he was on his back and Tidus was supporting his head with his arm.
"You'll cry," Jecht said fondly. "You're gonna cry. You always cry. See? You're crying."
Jecht wasn't wrong. Tidus was sobbing. It was completely heart-breaking.
"I hate you dad," Tidus sobbed.
Wakka was crying too by this point. So were Rikku and I, and Yuna looked like she was about to break down into tears too.
"Save it for later," Jecht was saying to Tidus.
Tidus swallowed heavily but nodded. "Right… We've got a job to do, don't we?"
Jecht managed to sit himself up so Tidus stood up.
"Good, that's right," Jecht smiled. "You are my son after all Tidus."
Tidus managed to smile. "You know, for the first time I'm glad…to have you as my father. I'm…I'm proud to be your son."
Jecht now looked like he was going to cry.
Yuna stepped forward. "Sit Jecht, I…I should…"
"No!" Jecht cried. "Yuna, there's no time!"
As if on cue, something black swooped down at us from the sky. Yu Yevon.
"You stay away!" Tidus screamed at it.
"Yuna," Jecht continued. "You know what to do. The Aeons! Call them!"
And with that, Jecht fell forward and vanished, his body disappearing into pyreflies.
As Jecht disappeared, Tidus couldn't look at any of us, but with Yu Yevon still swooping over us we had no choice but to act fast.
"Here it comes!" Lulu cried.
Suddenly the little ball of inky blackness landed on the top of the hilt of the sword which had been jammed into the ground. A bright light burst from it and engulfed us all.
When we were able to open our eyes we found ourselves on a narrow but long grey platform seemingly floating in the golden clouds. A small black and red ball was floating around in front of us. Yu Yevon.
"Yuna!" Tidus cried, his eyes still thick with tears shed for his father.
Yuna nodded once and turned to face Yu Yevon, raising her staff, her eyes full of sorrow at what she was about to do.
It began with Yojimbo. Yuna summoned him and Yu Yevon immediately took control of him. We then had to fight the very Aeons who had fought for and protected us, and it was awful.
After Yojimbo came Anima, Bahamut, Shiva, Ixion and Ifrit, and after we won each fight Yuna looked closer and closer to tears. Once Ifrit had faded I knew what was coming next, and I refused to watch. Yuna summoned Valefor and I didn't looking up from the ground until Rikku nudged me. "Ed'c tuha," she whispered to me.
I looked up just as the black and red was fading from around Yu Yevon. With no Aeons left to possess, it lost its defences and looked almost like a little bug.
I noticed that Tidus was looking around at us all and I swallowed hard. I knew what was coming.
Tidus took a deep breath before speaking. "Everyone? This is the last time we fight together, okay?"
Everyone apart from Auron and me turned to stare at him. They all looked shocked except for Yuna. She looked like she'd been given the worst news of her life, but that she's been expecting it.
"What I'm trying to say is…after we beat Yu Yevon…I'll disappear," Tidus said.
"What're you talking about?!" Lulu cried.
"You gotta be kidding, yah?" Wakka asked, hoping that Tidus was just pulling a cruel joke.
Rikku was looking from Tidus to me. She wasn't stupid; she had figured out that I had known about this already.
Kimahri was looking worriedly at Yuna.
And Yuna herself…looked heartbroken.
Tidus looked at all of us in turn before staring at Yu Yevon.
"I'm saying goodbye," he said, pulling his sword out as he walked towards Yu Yevon.
"Not now!" Rikku cried.
"I know it's selfish," Tidus said, "but this is my story!"
And with those words which had seemed to follow Tidus throughout his journey, he dealt the first blow to Yu Yevon.
As soon as Tidus attacked Yu Yevon, it cast a healing spell on itself. Lulu cursed under her breath before Auron ran in to slash down at the bug-like creature. Yu Yevon clearly wasn't very happy with that as it cast a weird kind of magic I'd never seen before. It caused a dome of black energy to cover Auron, Tidus and Yuna who were closest to it and it seemed to physically drain the energy from them. When the black magic of the spell faded they looked incredibly drained. Rikku threw and Al Bhed potion over them while I ran in with Kimahri and quickly slashed at Yu Yevon. Yuna then began to cast protective shield magic over us so if Yu Yevon attacked again it wouldn't be as affective, but before she could finish it Yu Yevon send black sparks right at Rikku. She couldn't move out of the way in time and was hit, flying backwards and smacking into the ground.
"Rikku!" I screamed before running over. Yuna quickly cast a healing spell on her and Rikku's eyes flew open, looking around disorientated.
"Well, that hurt," she complained, rubbing her lower back.
As Yuna and I were making sure Rikku was okay, Tidus had ran forward and jumped off of Yu Yevon itself before bringing his sword down on top of it as hard as her could. As he jumped back I quickly ran in and slashed down too, Kimahri not far behind me. Yu Yevon attacked again but this time we were protected by Yuna's spell.
It took a really long time but eventually we managed to weaken Yu Yevon right down to its last legs. Tidus locked eyes with me and grinned.
"One last time?" he asked.
I held back my tears and nodded, smiling too as we both ran forward screaming at the top of our lungs for no reason. We both leapt up and slashed down on Yu Yevon.
Yu Yevon began to rise into the air, shuddering as it did so. It started to pulsate when, with no warning, it shattered into a million tiny fragments of light.
I could only imagine what the sight must have looked like down on Spira. Luzzu, Captain Lucil, Shelinda, Dona, Maechen and everyone else would be seeing this right now. I just hoped they realised what it meant. The fayth…they could now rest.
Without even realising it we found ourselves back on the platform where Jecht had vanished. Yuna said nothing, immediately beginning to perform the sending for Jecht without question.
But halfway through the dance, she stopped having noticed something.
Pyreflies were coming from Auron.
"Don't stop," he said with a smile as everyone turned to stare at him.
"But I…" Yuna wavered.
"It's alright," Auron replied softly. "It's been long enough."
Auron turned to Kimahri and clapped him firmly on the shoulder as a sign of gratitude before looking at the rest of us in turn. Finally his eyes fell to Tidus and he smiled somewhat fondly before looking right at me.
"Sakura, your story is about to begin," he murmured to me. "Don't forget the lessons you learn."
Before I could ask him what he meant he had walked away to the edge of the platform, right where Jecht had fallen.
"This is your world now," he said before he vanished into pyreflies just like Jecht had.
We all knew we had to get out of Sin as fast as we could so we all hurried back to the airship. As soon as we had leapt back onto the top deck Brother started up the ship and flew out of Sin. As we did Yuna began to dance again, this time to send the Aeons themselves. I was glad she was doing that; they deserved a proper Sending.
As we flew away from Sin, the empty shell of the monster began to drop out of the sky. Thankfully before it hit the ground it exploded. Literally exploded. The sight of the blast from up in the airship was painfully bright and we all had to look away, but even with that Yuna continued to dance.
Eventually Yuna's dance came to an end.
But little did I know that the end of her final dance meant a new beginning for me.
Out of nowhere my head felt like I was about to explode. I fell to the ground, physically unable to stay standing. I could hear everyone around me, feel them trying to lift me to my feet, but it was useless. All I could focus on were the memories flashing through my head at the speed of light, the voices I was hearing that I had forgotten until now, the promise I had made which I now needed to fulfil.
Battles I had won, friends I had made, enemies I had fought, Kain, Laguna, Tifa, Vaan, Lightning, mannequins, Chaos, Cosmos, Tidus, Yuna.
The fight I had been dragged into.
The pawn I had become.
SAKURA'S STORY CONTINUES IN FINAL FANTASY: PAWNS.
AN: Holy crap on a cracker… THIS FIC IS FINISHED!
I can't actually believe it…three years ago I started this fic and now this is the last chapter. I've been so overwhelmed by your support for this story and I cannot thank you enough. The fact that the silly ideas and ramblings of a student in Scotland can entertain people on the other side of the world makes me so unbelievably happy.
As I said though, Suki's story isn't over yet. Like Auron told her, her story is only just beginning, so I hope you'll join me for part 2 of Sakura's Story in Final Fantasy: Pawns, the first chapter of which is now available to read on my profile.
If you'd like to keep in touch with my day-to-day life (which mostly means fangirling and random selfies) then feel free to add me on snapchat (veryberry96). I also have a cosplay facebook page (VeryBerry Cosplays) and a tumblr blog (veryberryrandoms). I'd love to chat to you guys online more often!
Thank you all again so much, you have no idea how grateful I am for your support!