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Night Empathy
By Dark
Null Space

Presented by: Xenogears: God and Mind

Author's notes.

     After the dark and nasty strength and weakness, I'm going to try and redeem myself with a really sweet little scene between Fei and Elly ---- I'd really prefer to have one about Dark and Elly but someone might moan at me for that. This scene won't appear in the Novelization and it didn't appear in the game, after Solaris both Fei and Elly were a little busy so they never got around to consoling each other. So this story should be read (like Entropy) in a total vacuum, I don't know what the crew are doing in Nisan or why Fei isn't unconscious, but I'm the Author and I can do what I like.

---

     There were five moons in Nisan that night, one real and permanent as it always was, four false reflections of light. The real moon floated in the star-filled sky, like a great silver ship, still immobile and wonderful in it's mercurial brilliance. One false moon rippled and changed like some strange ethereal presence, washing and flowing, a thing of constant agitation as it floated on the surface of the Nisan river. The two other false moons were far less obvious, they hung silver and jeweled, tiny drops of spun argent like the most beautiful crystals on a girl's necklace. But the girl to whom those crystals belonged cared nothing for jewelry, and the tiny precious drops were obliterated in a burst of light, and then reborn to glitter briefly as the tears ran down the girl's pale cheeks and welled up afresh in the shadowy depths of her beautiful violet eyes:
     Elly was crying.
     About her was the night of Nisan, a gentle wind like the loving touch of some secret comforter brushed tender cool fingers through her chestnut brown hair, lifting a curl here and there like a playful child. The smell of Nisan was laid across the gentle air in waves of miasma, the sweet pungent scent of night Jasmine and exotic tropical pines was underlain by the harsh baked tang of the desert, exciting and spicy. Around her was the dim zing of crickets, and the cool haunting cries of nocturnal birds combined with the quiet laughter of the water in a symphony of desert sound. But the girl on the bridge was oblivious to all sensation:
     Elly was crying.
     Her wet eyes lanced out into the starry night, as if they could pierce the shades of sparkling shadow's, as if they could change this flowing dark water into the eternal river of time and look back along it to where it all happened. It had been in the white city, where the sunlight shone through the dimensional shift in myriad waves of incandescence, the white city far above the clouds where she had spent her childhood. The leaden shots had cracked out like flat deadly full-stops, terminating the stories of her parents lives like the pencil of some universal sensor. Then had come fire, hot and red, hot and red and bloody as the giant of destruction who reveled and laughed among the ruins of the white city, and the shadow of who's wings was death.
     She had confronted that demon, understood the flaring golden pain that blazed through it's body to glare out of the suns of it's eyes. She had met it's fury with tenderness, showed it the deadly mercy that banished it back into the dark and twisted depths of memory from which it had arisen, rearing it's head like some deformed sea monster from the distant past. Yet still her home had burned.
     There was no hate in her mind for the perpetrator of her loss, because Elly learned wisdom long before, in another life and time when fire rained from the sky and people died like insects. There was nothing of that life left now, only shattered fragments that flapped about the inside of her skull like bright crumpled birds; caged and frantic. But the wisdom the other her had learned remained. Yet in spite of a fount of wisdom beyond her years or experience, despite the glowing love that filled her like some amber nectar of the Gods:
     Elly was crying.
     "Erm ---- Elly?" The voice floated shakily out of the gloom behind her, a hesitant sound like the squeak of a mouse. She did not look back or even answer, the moons in her violet eyes reformed and shattered, reformed and shattered, tinkling into the greater waters below like the laughter of dark fairies.
     "Elly ---- Oh sorry --- I'll go."
     There was the scrape of a footstep, unsure as the voice had been, and then Elly turned, wiping one hand across her eyes in a futile effort to make her red rims less obvious.
     "No --- please stay with me Fei."
     He walked slowly out of the darkness, the moon white on his shirt, his thickly muscled arms held protectively over his body. Stars glinted in the depths of Fei's expressive brown eyes and behind him his long dark hair blew in a sheaf of darkness. But in the silver light his face looked unreadable, every line of the uncertainty that had been in his voice and manner erased. For an instant she could believe that he was a lord of time, inscrutable as the universe, the contact with God. Then he came closer and she could read the letters of her own aching grief on his face like the marks of some malign stonemason.
     "I came to see --- what I could do."
     His words were clumsy, boyish and fumbling. She didn't answer but gazed out across the dim path of rippling moonshine, out into the night, out into the world.
     "Elly?" "Fei." Her voice was a whisper, a breath low and sweet and intangible as a spirit. "I'm sorry." "For what?" "For ---- you know ---- what I --- what---" Then with a suddenness that shocked her he slammed his fist on the stone parapet of the bridge, the hard meaty thud echoing out into the night and disrupting it's silent peace.
     "I can't help you! Damn it Elly --- I destroyed your home just like I destroyed mine, I come out to try and do what I can and I --- I can't." His brown eyes mirrored the tears in hers. "What can I do Elly?" "It's enough that you're here Fei. You're my life now, I stand here crying and you --- you came." She sobbed into the sleeve of her pale jacket, her tears wetting it's military material which blood might have stained.
     "---- You understand Fei, your heart fills with sympathy for me as mine is filled for you." "What are you saying Elly?" She smiled gently through her tears, a sweet compassionate smile on a young girl's face. "I think you understand better than you think." Fei moved restlessly, wiping away the mist of tears from his liquid eyes. "I think you're saying that I love you ---- and you love me." "See." Her voice was almost admonishing. "You do understand."
     The stars beamed down around Fei, and suddenly he seemed to stand up taller, a premonition of the strength that lay within him like a buried rock, a clear warm human strength that would prevail against any evil --- even himself.
     "You're a strong person Elly. Tell me what I can do to help you? --- Please, I can't see you cry." She moved closer to him, the sparkling darkness surrounding them like a blanket, the stars filling the sky like the cosmic tears of some incandescent being of ultimate light. She moved closer to him, and the moon shone though her hair as through autumn leaves --- but this was no autumn of falling hope but a spring of dawning love. "Hold me --- Fei. Hold me."
     Slowly, clumsily with infinite longing and an eternity of doubt, Fei took her in his arms and held her, her body trembled against him and tears filled his star-crossed eyes, she laid her chestnut head on his shoulder and sobbed freely, unashamedly letting her secret vulnerability show. His warmth and hidden strength flowing into her in a warm sweet flood of night empathy.

 

~ End ~