Catching Up - 01/31/21


There never seemed to be an end to the restless nights that plagued Blue ever since she had traveled East. This was one more night out of dozens where her mind refused to settle. Groggily, the Xaela sat up in her cot, listening out for the quiet slumbering noises of those who could rest proper. She took her linkpearl and slipped out of the tent, making for the only corner of the camp she figured wouldn't be occupied in the middle of the night.

It was quiet near the training dummies, the little wooden figures bearing the beatings of warriors past and present. Blue had been partial to one of them, and it showed in the slash and gouge marks embedded in deep grooves along the wood. She leaned against it now and clicked her linkpearl on and tucking it against her ear as she stared up at the cloudy sky.

“Tret, are you there? Back from your adventures yet?”


There would not be an immediate answer to her call. But after a few moments, a click, and then a slightly out of breath Tret came on the line “Haa… hahaha… wooo… Hello, Lovely! Oh hello hello! Yes I'm back, just got back inside the house, in fact! Ohhhhh its so good to hear your voice, dear. Things are going well out there then? Well, as well as a whole war can?”

sitting on the bed still, Tret's eyes were locked on the pile of wealth that lay before him. This was it! Blue was coming home to the biggest surprise! he had to tell someone! no. Not anyone. Keep it under wraps, people are terrible with secrets. But fuck, he was going to need some kind of help…


Blue blinked a little upon hearing her out of breath lover. How convenient for him to be suddenly home. She started counting her fingers. How many days had she not heard from him? Still, she couldn't help but smile at hearing his voice again. No yelling, no crying, just the happy sounds of a happy man.

When he asked how she was doing on her end, the Xaela had to pause, bringing those same counting fingers up to rub at the back of her earfin.

“Could be better…but could be worse. I beat up a dumb magitek thing today. Got it right in the eye! And there's been some progress on what my sister's doing so maybe with any luck we won't be in Bozja for too much longer.”


“Really now? Look at you! Last time you told me about those things, you were overwhelmed and barely got out alive! Now you're just walking around kicking them like you own the place. Wonderful, dear. Wonderful. I won't make you give too many details, though. I know how things can be. What happens after the war front? Not ending your trip on such a… bleak view, no?”

In the quiet homestead, Tret had finally gotten up and was trying to get comfortable after the long trip. He was entirely distracted now from the treasure he'd “won”, and was simultaneously changing clothes and trying to put together something decent to eat. So much going on!


Blue could feel herself smiling sheepishly at the compliment.

“I mean…it wasn't as big as those other ones, but I did beat it up good. I don't know what happens after all this. I feel like there's more training I should be doing with Lami so we might stay out East a little bit longer before I head back home.”

“But what about your adventure? How'd it go? How'd Rina and Astra do? Was Luca okay? Did you find any treasure?”


“Luca was fine… Rina and Astra were…fine. It was…” There was a pause as Tret considered his words “…Well, I suppose nothing said on here is really… ah… valuable?” He then launched into a tale of teleportation to far lands, a strange man, uncovering a ruin. The mysterious behavior of a rabbit, which struck him as similar to someone else the two of them know long ago, and tempers flaring over the words of a mysterious spirit.

“You know? The further we get from home, the more things seem the same! I should have called off the whole thing when this little spirit came into play, but I second guessed myself…”

While glossing over the Trial of Fear, as he was not fully understanding what he saw in his, he revealed the deity status of the spirit and the bargaining for the treasure “I figured I could replace enough of the memories people were giving up without losing too much. But of course we over thought it. She couldn't even take the memories from us! But… Now there's this bracelet. and I'm not sure about it. How is it I'm always stuck holding the possibly cursed items?”

Distinctly missing was the mention of the huge pile of treasure in their bedroom.


Of all the stories she'd expected to hear from Tret's adventure, somehow this had not been the one she'd been envisioning in her head. The Xaela frowned at the mention of the friend from long ago.

“Astra changed that much?” she murmured out loud, mostly to herself before letting Tret continue regaling his tale of the spirit, the diety, and though she pursed her lips at the mention of Tret willingly offering to give his memories away, she didn't interrupt. It was only when he mentioned the cursed bracelet now attached to his wrist that Blue had to stop herself from turning and banging her head against the striking dummy.

“Yes dear, you were doing so good with not touching all the cursed things…let's hope it doesn't talk like the last one…but I'm glad you all made it out okay.”

Blue paused briefly, nothing but silence on her end, before,

“This is gonna seem like a random question, but how come you've never raised a weapon to me? Besides the first time of course…but otherwise, why? Not like I haven't been stabbed or slashed or messed up before. I wouldn't have held it against you. I never held back.”


“Yeah… I dunno about talking to me… But I want to take it off, and something is nagging me not to at the same time… Gonna need to figure out more about it…”

Tret's curiosity was immediately raised, but turned to a small smile ad she asked the question. He shook his head out of habit, then his voice lowered a bit “You forget when I was trying to save Thrax then. The last time I attacked you at all was… well… the day I nearly lost you. Not going to do it again. Not even going to risk an accident. I can't lose you again.”


Blue curled her finger around a stray strand of hair, drawing it back behind her earfin absently.

“I don't forget. I just try hard not to remember. That was a mess of a time. Coulda hurt more people than I did..”

Again she went quiet for a moment, wondering if she should ask the question in her mind. Quietly,

“..But what if you do lose me. What would you do?”

She hastily added,

“Purely what if by the way. We never really talk about death, barely even talked about what happened when you did almost lose me back then.”


“… I'm not entirely sure. I may just be done. Back then when there wasn't a choice… It was just… Rage. I started with that thing and I don't know where I would have stopped.”

It was Tret's turn for silence now, but he finally broke it. “I don't think I've felt that angry since. Don't remember the last time I lost control. Don't like to think about that day, because that could have been it. A good chapter… You said it was a good chapter, but it still would have been an awful ending.”


Blue sighed softly and hugged herself.

“Sometimes I still think about how it felt. I really did think it was the end. I didn't want it to be. Our story was supposed to keep going, and not end like that.”

“I just wanted to say…I'm sorry. You've always believed in me and my strength, but I'm sure I've worried you plenty while I've been over here. Anything could have happened, and you'd be a whole ocean away. It almost did happen when I got shot. I did my best but I guess if they hadn't found me, I wouldn't be talking to you now.”


“…Don't apologize, dear. I do believe in you because I refuse to think of whatever else could be. You pulled through because you had to. There wasn't another choice.” There was a heavy sigh on the line, followed by “It has to keep going. I'm not ready. So… Yeah. Make good choices dear. I tell you that often enough. I know you're not me, and you're going to do things your way. Just…” Tret trails off there, then suddenly perks up “Think I'm gonna have a surprise for you when you get home. So don't be away forever! Gotta come back and see this, if I can get things moving!”


“I'm really trying, promise.” She answers quickly before the conversation swiftly changes over to this surprise of sorts. The Xaela tilts her head.

“Surprise? Can I have a hint?” Her tail wags a bit at the thought, briefly distracted from more morbid things.


“No. No you cannot. Just know it's a big one, and you'll be bouncing giddy and super excited. So don't be gone too much longer, lovely.”


Blue grins. “That's no fair but okay. I'll look forward to it then when I get home.”

The Xaela hummed a little, tapping her cheek idly with a finger.

“Anything else we need to talk about? It's been quite the break between our calls. Oh, I did get your message from Eligor. It was…..bizarre yet entertaining, so thank you.”


“Bizarre? i take it he didn't kiss you or smack your ass for me then. He told me he wouldn't but… Well now I'm curious, what made it so entertaining?”


“He simulated some of that with a couple mounds of mud. Which was a very creative way to deliver the message.”

Blue paused.

“You sent a message to Veldi too, didn't you? She sort of mentioned something about it.”


“I did. I told her not to bother pushing you away. You were dead set on helping, so there wasn't any convincing. And if anything happened to you, it was my fault for letting you go to begin with. I still hold to that. If something happens to you… Well… It's my fault.”


For a moment Blue didn't know what to say. She stared out at the tents in the distance, but her head was just replaying events from earlier, finding Veldi again.

“That's sweet of you to tell her but I imagine she didn't like it very much. And I don't like that last part at all. Why's someone always have to be at fault if something bad happens? Not that I'm any better but…”

“…You wouldn't have been able to stop me from going. I would have found a way.”

“It was my choice. I have no regrets. I've seen death and pain and horror. It's muddy everywhere and even the chocobos aren't happy. When I come home I may spend several nights crying because being here has been so….so different from what I was used to living..and far too familiar in ways I don't want to think about.”

“But Veldi is here. And even though I know she's strong and can take care of herself, sometimes I feel like she might lose herself one day if there's no one there for comfort and just…to feel safe around for a little while. Sometimes I feel that's all I'm good for, really.”

“And here, where everything else is so overpowering, can really burn you out and break you, maybe that's okay.”


“I imagine there's not much Veldi likes. But finding something…someone to blame… It at least gives some meaning. if everything bad happened just due to random chance, then there's no outlet for emotion. Just…Yelling at fate.”

He let her continue on, nodding subconciously and smiling as she came to a point he had made not long ago “Comfort. You know, her teacher and I had some words about that. That she shouldn't need to feel safe for any reason. That weakness needed to be purged. I think he wanted a robot, not someone with emotions and pains. I told him about as much. Don't think he liked that much. Think I nearly died for it. But I didn't, so that worked out i suppose.”

“But yes, be the comfort. Be something stable. Someone she can turn to and just let her guard down for. Despite all the pain and torment, you can be available when she does need you. She's not going to let you get killed out there if she can help it. Do what you can to help with that.”


Blue growled under her breath a little bit when Tret mentioned nearly dying just for making a comment. She had some choice words she wanted to say but decided against it and chose to reply to the rest.

“Yeah, he said some things to me about being too soft and sentimental but that's just where we can agree to disagree. Comfort matters. You can take down your enemies again and again, over and over, but if there's nothing or no one to come back to, what's the point?”

“I've been practicing here too, both with my claws and also with some of the things Lami has taught me. I don't want her stressing out over my safety. I intend to listen and stay as safe as I can.”


“yeah, that was basically what I told him when he asked why I was here and not with you. A body needs rest. Somewhere to lay down. You cannot endlessly fight… Keep at your lessons, lovely. Stay strong, get stronger. And… Listen to them both. You have heart, but they have experience. Neither of them are trying to get you hurt, so don't try to second guess their orders, alright?”


“Psh, you know I wouldn't do that. I trust them both and have no reason to question. It's all a new experience to me. I'm actively trying to make sure I'll be useful, not make things worse.”

Blue smiled gently. “See, this is why it's dangerous to call you. You always find a way to put my mind at ease and I don't know how you manage to keep doing it.”

“I probably shouldn't keep you though if you just got back. We'll have to talk more about this weird bracelet of yours and whether we need to obliterate it. Maybe have one of the chocobos eat it.”


“That's because I'm your comfort, dear. And I'm right here when you're need me. If things get too dire? Ehhh…. It's not super pleasant but I'm sure I can get out there if I had to. I'll carve a path of fire and death to get to you as well!” He laughed at his joke(?) And shook his head, then Tret continued “yes yes, I am half baked and trying to make a sandwich. Can't decide what I need to do first… Do call again when you have the time. I'll be here, promise.”


Blue waved her hand in the air and giggled. “No need for all that. I'll be fine. I'm well taken care of, promise.”

“Go enjoy your sandwich making and I'll give you a call whenever things are quiet. I love you, please be safe.”

With that, she would click the linkpearl off, and head on back to the tents to try and get some shuteye.

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