ff6: the veldt

It is stifling hot on the Veldt and I can't sleep. Sir Sabin seems to lack my troubles; his snores make the sides of our tent quiver and rival the distant bellow of the monsters that inhabit this particular land. But I suppose that the heat is nothing to him--he is from Figaro, after all, and this night must seem balmy after the scorching heat of the desert.

To be perfectly honest, it is not the heat that bothers me this night. For the first time since Doma fell, I am not caught up in the flow of battle or in the midst of rage or sore afraid--as I was on that dread train. For the first night I can think clearly upon the death of my people and it makes my heart roar in pain.

My wife.

My son.

My King and country.

All are dead.

The tears come fast and if t'were not unseemly I would bawl like my son did when he was but a suckling child. As it is, I cannot stop their slow progress down my cheeks.

What shall I do with myself, now that all meaning has gone from my life? Shall I give myself over to naught but vengeance and throw my life away in one pointless attack upon the Empire? Shall I make Doma's fall complete?

For the first time in my life, I am without a purpose.

Beside me, Sir Sabin's snores have ceased. I can hear him stirring and I wonder if he has heard my silent weeping.

I try to stop the tears but they flow irregardless of my will.

"Cyan?" he says, low and rough from sleep.

"Aye?" It is all I can do to keep my voice from cracking, and I must clear my throat a few times before I am able to get even that word out.

"Just checking to see if you're still here."

I can hear the slow intake of his breath as he yawns, and then he begins to snore again. I feel anger first, wondering if he thinks me so small as to sneak away in the middle of the night and leave him to face the monsters alone. And then, as my rage burns itself away, I wonder if, perhaps, he is so used to being alone, to being left to fend for himself, that he finds my continued presence to be something of a wonder.

I find myself wondering who this strange, young man is, to be so used to loneliness already. I find myself wanting to stay by his side and see him safely through the mad times that are coming--for how could the world not be going mad when a man like Kefka is given power?

I swore an oath and took up the sword that I might be a protector. My King is gone. My country, too. My wife and son lie with the rest of Doma's people in our ruined castle. I failed in my duty to them.

Perhaps I can make it up by keeping this young man safe.

Sir Sabin--no, Sabin of Figaro; I swear my fealty to you by the strength of my arm and the honor of my dead people. I will follow you through this life, though the world may break and the War of the Magi come again.

I will protect you.

The Veldt is still too hot, but my mind has calmed and the pain in my heart seems less.

Perhaps I can find some rest.

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