Final Wish

[03.28.02] » by Silvyrwing

            How old are you, Seifer?



            "Get out of my mind…!"

            Breathe… just breathe… Time compression, and here I was… Here, still… where? Adel. Dead. What a way to celebrate my birthday. And… who was I?

            You are my knight. You belong to me.

            "That's just what you told me. That's just… that's just what you forced me to believe…"

            You have one year, Seifer…

            She sounded distracted, almost as if engaged in some activity other than Connecting herself to my mind. Her lapse in concentration allowed one bit of information to slip through. One little bit of information she'd been withholding from me…

            "I'm a… SeeD cadet? SeeD… I know what SeeD is…"

            I waited for a response. There wasn't one, and in fact, I felt as though my mind was freer. That she no longer held me under such strict control… Yes, she was still there. I still heard her voice, but it was foggy. For the first time in what seemed to be years, I could move of my own accord, and my first action as a free man was to rise to my feet and stand on my own, without any support from the Sorceress, Ultimecia.

            There was blood on the floor, but it wasn't just mine. Adel's, Rinoa's, Squall's… Within it, I could see the reflection of both a boy and a monster. Of hope, of death…  Bits of memories came rushing back to greet me. Memories that weren't my own, yet at the same time, were clearly being viewed from my own eyes. I had tortured Squall. He'd nearly killed me several times. It seemed fair enough, that I was now standing, critically injured, because of Squall's blade.

            I give my power to you.

            "Huh?" Again, she spoke to me, but it seemed to take more effort than usual. My head swam for a couple seconds, and I felt restored.

            Where was I? Inside Lunatic Pandora, alone, with Adel dead at my feet. I shivered as the recollection hit me… A beautiful, raven-haired girl junctioned to Adel, Adel stealing her energy… A fierce battle ensued as I looked on, smiling. What was the girl's name? Rinoa.

            Reflect on your… childhood…

            There was no one else in the room with me, though I could hear shouting nearby. I was still engrossed with the dead sorceress, lying just outside the machine that had come to be known as 'Adel's Tomb.' Hyperion lay next to her, and as I leaned forward to reclaim it, a gloved hand brushed across her outstretched arm, and a frigid sensation greeted me, passed through my arm, through my body. I jerked back, slipped in the blood, and landed on my tailbone.

            "My… childhood?" I asked, rubbing my lower back as new spasms of pain coursed through all my nerves.

            Your sensation… Your words… Your emotions…

            "Did I have a childhood?" I asked, emerald eyes narrowing at my reflection in the blood. "All I ever knew was… SeeD. Then…" But, I must have been a child sometime! No one skipped growing up, not even me, even if I was the Sorceress' knight.

            Sorceress' Knight.

            Hadn't that been a movie that I watched when I was - - -

            It was almost as if I was blinded by the flash of memories. Me, sitting in an orphanage, building something out of wooden blocks while watching a picture viewer. There were other children next to me. Squall… Selphie… And I was angry.


            I looked at a younger Squall through the eyes of a child. Saw him sitting across the room. I wanted him to watch the movie about the Sorceress' Knight, too! But he was too busy talking to Quistis. Quistis was pretty, and I didn't want Squall talking to her. Was I jealous? As jealous as a six-year-old child could be. At that point, I had all the time in the world to go talk to her. Tell her how I felt. Of course, at that point, I didn't realize that I was in love. Boys love their parents. Loved their sisters and brothers. Little boys didn't know they were supposed to love girls.

            Time… It will not wait…

            Soon, we were ripped from the orphanage, taken to a place called Garden. There… that was where I lost my memories. Focused more on battle than keeping contact with my friends. Quistis… She became my teacher, and while I still had feelings for her, they were buried beneath my hatred of authority. Sad, yes. And while I was younger, occasionally, my mind would try to reach out. Would try to grasp on the the orphanage and hold it close. All I had to do was hold on, but…

            No matter… how hard you hold on… It escapes you…

            Eventually, the memories of the orphanage were erased. The memories of my care for Quistis, my rivalry with Squall, my antagonistic actions toward Zell. Yet at the same time, none were really forgotten; Obviously, looking back to the present, to the scar on my face, I could see that Squall and I still fought, just as we had. But it was all gone now. It was all gone.


            I felt Ultimecia dying inside my mind. The last tendrils of her control were evaporating, burning my mind with such an intensity that I was forced into a whimpering fetal position, curled just at the edge of the pool of blood and trembling… Her words… she had been talking to the others, too. For a brief moment, I could feel them in my mind, lost within the Compression of Time.

            And then she spoke, only to me.

            You have… one year… Seifer. One year before you are expelled from Garden. I used you… You are a powerful spirit, and I've grown… to love you as a son. I want nothing but the best for you…I give you back your life… My final wish… is for you to take back what I've stolen from you…

            I free you…

            When I next opened my eyes, I saw my reflection not in the blood, but in the pure metallic floor of Lunatic Pandora. Ultimecia still existed at the corners of my mind. She always would, as, to some measure, she'd passed her powers to me. Was I a sorcerer? Perhaps. And my friends were lost within time. Squall was gone. Rinoa was chasing him. But the others?

            "You're going the wr… wrong… way…" I was surprised at the roughness in my voice. I sounded defeated. Pained. They could not hear me.

            There was one I knew… If I could just reach her, I could pull them all back.


            She turned, seemed to hear my voice. "Don't fall into a time warp!" she was saying.

            My mind reached across time… they were separated. "Quisty… head this way… head toward my voice…"

            My birthday. I was nineteen years old now, and I had one year left.

            Thoughts blended together in my mind.

            Irvine. Selphie. Had they followed Quistis?

            Had Rinoa found Squall?

            I… couldn't…




            A familiar scent greeted my nose upon awakening. It was crisp, like winter, yet at the same time, there would be no snow on the ground. It was too temperate here. Just below tropical. The infirmary… The window was open, and I could smell the fresh flowers blooming outside.

            "Welcome back, Seifer."

            Blue eyes greeted me when my vision cleared. Quistis. "You heard me," I said, allowing a rare smile.

            "Aye," she responded. "That little stunt of yours… it pardoned you, too. You're kind of a demi-hero, I suppose. It also nearly cost you your life…"

            "My life?" I pushed myself up on my elbows, looking at the calendar on the wall. It had been switched to January, which meant I was out for at least a week.

            "You switched spots with us, when you called us back from Time Compression…" She adjusted her glasses, looking down to the floor briefly. "When we arrived back at Lunatic Pandora, you were cold. We thought you were dead, but… It's a good thing Rinoa is a Sorceress. She says she found you, but none of us are sure how."

            "What are they gonna do with me?" I asked, falling back against the pillow, looking at the ceiling. I tried to pick out patterns in the rough paint.

            "Squall wants to re-instate you as a cadet," she said quietly, and when I looked over to her, a smirk lighted one corner of her mouth. I couldn't believe it. "He's changed," she continued. "You should see him. Almost all smiles now…"

            "I'll believe it when I see it," I said with a chuckle. Again, I propped myself up, attempted a sitting position, but almost as if on cue, Squall appeared in the doorway. Sure enough, there was a smirk on his face. I never would have expected it.

            "Doctor Kadowaki called me. Said you woke up." He didn't move from his position, leaning casually against the doorframe. "So… will you fight on our side this time?" He shifted he weight, still smiling. There was feeling in those grey eyes now.

            I remembered Ultimecia's final wish. Of course I would accept. After a brief nod, I felt Quistis' arms around my neck. Squall strode toward me and clapped me on the back. "Always good to have another dedicated cadet," he added formally. Oh, yes. I'd forgotten. He was commander of the forces now, just as I had been when I commandeered Galbadia Garden. Only his position was a welcome one.

            "Figures you would say something like that," I snapped, pulling myself into a sitting position. "I just have one question before I dedicate my life to SeeD again. I want a vacation."

            Quistis rolled her eyes. The stormy expression returned to Squall's face. "That's more of a statement than a question," he said. "But for the hero of the day…" On that last note, the smile was back.

            I chuckled a little. "I was thinking I'd do a little relaxing in Balamb Town. Maybe…"

            Squall shrugged. "You can spend a week fishing for all I care. Just make sure that you come back this time. Last time you went off on your own, you disappeared."

            I smiled.

            Maybe I'd do just that…

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