Name: Chiranka De Croos
Disclaimer: I don’t own Suikoden III. Konami does.
Spoilers: For Suikoden III. This fic will pretty much only make complete sense if you play the game all the way through. Basically, it takes place several decades after Suiko III, meaning everyone is old, except for the true rune bearers. Eternally young Geddoe meets a dying Queen.
The Captain walked into the dim room, aware of the woman that was sleeping in it. He dared not to disturb her; sleeping was the only solace that she could have these days from her pains. She was dying a horrible death, and all the best doctors and medicines that the Captain could buy would just prolong her suffering for a few more days. How many years had they been together? More than he could count. Time was arbitrary, but it sure as hell lasted a while, at least for the Captain. He knew what was coming; it was inevitable. He had seen it happen to all his friends: once dark hair turning white, smooth skin becoming marred with wrinkles. He knew what was going to happen only because of observation. He would never have the same luxury of turning gray, old, and finally leaving this mortal coil that the rest of his friends had. He looked in the mirror above the bed: black hair as always, never a sign of gray. Other people would be jealous of his eternal youth, but they never had to bear the burden of it. He was older than time, he felt. The things he could tell his great-great-great-grandchildren, if he ever had children to begin with. No, he never could; he could never bear outliving his children and all their children, watching them die before his eyes, like everyone else that he had ever let in. The Captain closed his eyes, thinking about what had happened to everyone that was once close to him.
Two died of liver failure as a result of their chronic alcoholism; it was bound to happen eventually. They drank like fish until the last of their days. They still had spirit however, and continued to insult each other until the Grim Reaper appeared, taking away the older one who was once so skilled at martial arts. The younger still pretended everything was just fine, okay, when the Captain came visiting. The Captain could see what a toll the death of the older had on the younger man, however. He died shortly after, lacking the will to live any longer. The third, who had never touched alcohol, simply died of old age. Even in his final days he remained silent, never cursing the Captain of his "gift" of never-ending life. He instead smiled, an act that the Captain had never even known the man capable of doing. "Don’t worry, we don’t blame you, go on, live!" he seemed to say. His wife, the youngest of their group, was never the same afterwards. She too, died shortly after, possibly of grief. The Captain had visited her, but could not break her out of her depression. He took her back to her homelands of Karaya for burial. He knew the spirits she always talked about would take care of her. He knew he couldn’t. Everyone was slowly going away, away from him. How many times had this happened before to him? He cursed himself for never learning, for never leaving the rest of the world behind.
The Captain moved closer to the sleeping figure on the bed. She was still beautiful to him, always was, even with her snow-colored hair and wrinkled skin. He knew that she had always had feelings for him. When he had fainted that day so long ago, she was there for him. He had woke up to her red-lipsticked smirk, and felt a measure of relief. How long ago did that happen? Fifty, sixty years ago? She had held his hand with such concern that he knew he could continue on as long as he had her. Being alive for all those years before her trained him in how to hide his emotions, however, and hopefully, she never realized that he too, cared for her. It was better that way, for both of them. He could tell easily with her, the way she smiled at him, the way that she ever-so-slightly lost her famed composure and coolness when she talked to him. They had hid their feelings from each other all these years. They had to, the Captain thought angrily. It was easier to bloody pretend that their bloody feelings didn’t bloody matter, that the bloody rune stuck in his bloody right hand wasn’t bloody important. He sighed. He was always good at fooling himself. How else could he live, day by day?
The Captain heard a faint rustling on the bed. She was waking up. He hoped the medicines that he had bought her earlier had provided some amount of comfort. That was all he wanted, to take her up in his arms, and placate her, even just for a bit. But he knew moving her would just increase her torment, so he let her be. Instead, he simply stood by her bed, waiting for her cerulean eyes to open. He stroked her face with his gloved hand, looking at her. Her eyes slowly opened with his touch, and she stared back at him.
"Hello, Captain." She mumbled weakly, attempting to sit up. He gestured for her to remain lying down. She simply did not have the means to sit up; she was on her deathbed, after all. "So, what’s a handsome guy like you doing in a place like this?" She smiled in the same way he had seen her do so many times before. Her little smirk, showing such confidence, always hiding her fears that she had. When they all thought they were going to die, she smiled, brandished her sword, and proceeded to fight. As long as she never showed fear, everything would be okay. That was once her motto, when she was strong enough to uphold it. She still tried to be strong, if only for him, her Captain.
"Hello…" The Captain said softly. "I came to see a sleeping beauty, but I guess I woke you up. Sorry about that." As long as he pretended, everything would be all right, right?
The woman chuckled softly. "I see you took some lessons on how to smooth-talk the ladies from Ace. Jeeze, didn’t I always tell you never to get advice from him? Fat lot of help it did to you; you’re stuck here with me." Ah, their usual, casual banter. This same conversation could have occurred so many years back.
"Eh, I was desperate, so what can I say?" The Captain said, smiling softly. He could handle this idle repartee, this light-hearted chatter.
They continued to talk for the next few hours, reliving their lives with each other. The Captain didn’t even notice the sun slip behind the mountains, until he realized that he could barely make out the features on the woman’s face. With some regret, he knew he had to leave; it wasn’t in his place to keep the woman up when she so obviously needed to rest. Stroking her face once again, he stood up, pushing his chair into the desk next to her bed. The woman had a sad look on her face, but knew that the Captain would always come back for her. The Captain leaned over and gently kissed the woman on the cheek, and turned and started to walk away. She smiled and closed her eyes, finally at peace. As the Captain was about to walk out the door, he heard her speak, one last time.
"Geddoe…thank you, for everything. I love you…" she trailed off, too weak to continue. Geddoe turned around, to look at the woman on the bed who had just said the words that they could never say to each other. She was so frail, so weak, but still so strong. Stronger than he was, stronger than he could ever be. Her eyes were closed, face pallid. He smiled at her, it was the least he could do.
"I love you too, Queen. I’ll always come back for you." Taking one final look at the woman, Geddoe turned and walked out of the dark room. He knew the next time that he came back, it would be to bury his Queen.
AN: I basically wrote this thing on a whim, simply because I like Suikoden better than English homework. I love absolutely, utterly, and completely adore Geddoe’s team in Suiko III. Geddoe, Queen, Ace, Joker, Aila, Jacques…they all come together so well! Even though I wrote this, I really can’t picture any of the SFDF old at all. Oh well. On another note, I’m not that fond of Aila and Jacques pairing up, but pairing them up helped me to figure out what to write for Aila. Whee, laziness! I hope you enjoyed this little bit of depression and sadness.