The night was a cool one as a gentle breeze ruffled the trees
around the Winhill Bluffs, however Ellone Loire barely felt
it because she was concentrating more on her memories. Thoughts
of Squall floated into her mind as she sat down on the soft
grass, looking up at the stars and crescent moon. The night
was gorgeous, her mother had always used to love these clear,
mid-summer nights. But Raine had long since past away, it had
been in her early childhood. The light scent of roses, the feeling
of a soft, Casmir sweater, and the image of a pair of twinkling,
mischievous blue eyes, was all she had left. And now her only
father had left her as well, leaving her with barely anything
to recall him by except the profile of an enthusiastic, fierce,
and noble soldier who believed that the pen was truly mightier
then the sword. How long would it be until she lost Squall?
How much time did she have left on this vast, gorgeous planet?
Everything seemed like an uncertainty at the moment, she didnít
want to fight the numbness that came on these nights lying outside,
by herself, and trying to get past grieving, only to find that
she wasnít sure how to overcome death. Is there a place, deep
within the heart, body, mind, and soul that just canít be recovered
when youíve been hurt too much? Perhaps Squall was intelligent
by not getting close to anyone, but even he had overcome that
fear, but still leaving her estranged from him. Would sleep
come soon or would it be a restless evening?
"I want to go home, back to when we were a family again, back
to where things made sense and there wasnít any pain." She whispered
aloud, to the stars, as though expecting some kind of response.
They only continued to illuminate the night as they looked down
upon her, "Please let me into that sweet, emotionless abyss
with you. I donít want to be alone anymore."
She knew exactly what they would tell her. ĎBe strong, Elle,
donít give up so easily.í
Will you miss me when Iím gone? Will you remember all the good
times we had? The hardest thing about leaving is saying goodbye.
Iíll miss you more then I can say. And when I leave, Iíll just
dream about you, Iíll be only a memory away. Youíre something
special to me, friendship is something that money canít buy
and if you need me you know that Iíll be there for you. Iíll
be only a memory awayÖ
It used to be her favorite childhood lullaby that Raine had
sung to her, clearing the fears of the monsters out of her mind.
She missed her so much, she missed them both too deeply for
words to describe as she leaned back against a large tree trunk,
glancing around and taking in the serenity of the place. "I
wonder, Squall, will you ever forgive me for leaving you?" She
verbalized her thoughts and sighed, sinking even lower into
"I donít know." A reply came from behind her and she spun around
in surprise to face her younger brother. He stood there, unarmed
and perplexed as he watched her, narrowing his eyebrows when
he saw that she her eyes were puffy, seemingly red-rimmed.
"I guess you heard the news." She blinked her eyes rapidly
and rubbed them in an effort to hide the tears that threatened
to spill down her face, "Uncle Laguna died in the early hours
of the morning after trying to get to Balamb Garden to warn
you about an attack. He was taken hostage by Galbadian soldiers
and then theyÖ theyÖ" She trailed off, unable to go on.
"I know. Iím sorry." He said, crouching down to sit near her
side and resting his back against the tree as well.
"Youíre sorry? Squall, he was your father. Is that it? Is that
all you feel?"
"Iím not sure what to think anymore." He looked as though he
had the weight of the world on his shoulders when he, too, began
looked up at the sky.
"Howís everyone else?" she asked, concern evident in her voice
through the sorrow.
"Theyíre dealing. Irvineís comforting Selphie while the rest
of them have just been down in spirits. It seems the whole Galbadian
attack has made the morale droop to an all-time low."
"Things will clear, eventually. Youíll see."
"I donít want to think about the future anymore." He confessed,
glancing at her.
"Whereís Rinoa?" She held his gaze.
"Back at Garden, she tried to help, butÖ"
"But itís just not the same. I know you hated him for leaving
us while going off to become a legend in Esthar. Although Iím
beginning to think that maybe it was best. Perhaps, if heíd
come back for us, we would never know the others from Matronís
"I never hated him. He annoyed the hell out of me but hate
is far from what I felt."
He shrugged and looked away.
"I miss him," she admitted, breaking the brief silence that
had set in as they left each other to their own thoughts.
"What was Raine like?" he asked, ignoring her comment. The
question surprised the girl and she wondered what was on his
"She wasÖ beautifulÖ sweet, tender, caring, understanding.
She always used to scold Uncle Laguna for talking in slang to
me." She smiled, through the agony she was feeling, at the fond
"What did she look like?" He became slightly curious, taking
interest in her responses.
"Long, ebony hair and sparkling blue eyes. She always used
to wear her favorite beige sweater and a matching headbandÖ"
She opened up her hand, that had been in somewhat of a fist,
to reveal a soft, small piece of fabric that Squall stared at.
"She loved you so much. When you were born, before she got
sick, she always used to carry you around in her arms and walk
with you out here, in these bluffs, waiting for Uncle Laguna
to come back with meÖ thatís what the people here told me."
They shared a quiet moment, reflecting on their pasts, as the
siblings huddled close together under the tree.
"Why didnít you tell me before? Why did you make me wait so
long?" he questioned her, beginning to feel the pain as well.
"I never wanted to hurt you, I didnít want you to go through
what I had to endure. I was just trying to look out for you
all this time."
"Is that an excuse?"
"Think what you want of it, I have no clue where to go from
here. If I should even bother going on at allÖ"
"Youíll live, Elle. Come back to Garden with me."
She shook her head and rubbed her eyes once again.
"I canít do that, thereís too much of a danger with me here.
Iím gonna go up to space again as soon as the space station
"Esthar needs a leader."
"We both know that I canít do that. Iím going to hand it over
to Kiros and Ward. Theyíre really upset too, but I think theyíd
be honored to do it."
"So youíre going away."
"I guess so. This is pointless, Squall. Itís impossible for
me to stay, and yet, I find it so hard to leave again."
"Why not? Rinoaís staying in Garden even though sheís a Sorceress.
We can protect youÖ"
"Things are just better this way. Trust me, Iíll be alright.
I just need some time to think. Who knows, maybe one day I will
rule over Esthar. But right now, this is best for all of us."
"Best for you, you mean."
"Donít get like that. You know, just as well as I do, that
as long as Iím on earth Iíll forever pose a threat. Thereís
always someone out there, some sick, angry foe that will want
to use my abilities for the wrong purposes. It may not be fair,
but thatís the way life is. One day, far away, eventually there
will be peace and happiness, in the distant future and nobody
will want to fight. But until that day comes, Iíll be looking
out for all of you, from the sky."
"Never forget about these times together, with your friends
and family, one day you might need them." She stood up slowly
and gazed at him, through those teary eyes.
"You need love and friendship for this. And the courage to
believe it. Itís all about love, friendship, and courage. Iím
counting on you."
Those words, thatís what he told Squall in the Ragnarok before
the time compression. Live by those words Squall, donít let
the walls youíve created get the best of you.
She knew how badly he yearned to go after her as she began
walking away from him, not looking back out of fear that she
might let her emotions get the best of her. She felt his pain
as she got farther and farther away, because she carried the
same aching in her heart, mind, body, and soul. Things wouldnít
be like that forever, she knew; one day the sun would come out
and clear the storm clouds then everyone would be together at
last, with no more suffering.