Tidus and Yuna Talk
A Final Fantasy X Fanfiction
Tidus kicked at a small stone in his path. He tried to clear his mind, but so far, nothing was helping. Nothing could have prepared him for what he had seen when he entered the ruins of Zanarkand. He had hoped against hope that somehow, just maybe, it was a different Zanarkand or people were mistaken about it being ruins. Anything but the image that had burned a permanent memory through his eyes. The broken stones, the once great towers… all of it… destroyed. Destroyed by a force that could not be destroyed. Since he and Yuna had talked that evening in the spring in Macalania, Tidus had silently vowed to find a way to keep Yuna safe from a Summoner’s ultimate demise, even if it meant his own life. But then, the Fayth… Now he didn’t exist, didn’t belong in the world of the living. And there was nothing he could do about it. He ran a quavering hand through his soft blond hair, knowing that he would have to sit down and sort these things out, but not really understanding how to go about such a task. Tidus lifted his head slightly, breathing deeply in the cool, crisp breeze that came from the sea. His thoughts wandered. He glanced down at the flesh-colored sand, musing over what it would feel like to kick off his shoes and let his toes sink into the cool grains. As he rounded a corner of rock, he stopped short, not really sure what to do next. There stood Yuna, hands clasped lightly behind her back, face to the horizon, her pale skin like fire in the silhouette of Zanarkand’s setting sun. He watched her, fascinated with the calm and whimsical way in which she faced the beginning of a long, cold night in the Land of the Dead. He was so completely in love with her, he was sure he would burst if he couldn’t reach out and gently touch her pale, firm skin. Instead, he decided it was time… even though he wasn’t sure how to tell her. He wanted to. He needed to. Above all, he wanted to save her the pain of losing him. It would be a much less painful experience if she didn’t care for him. So, he advanced, feeling the solid ground beneath his feet – a reminder as he was tossed amongst the surges of his own emotions.
“Yuna?” Yuna turned slowly, almost painfully, as if she’d forgotten how.
“Yes?” Tidus needed time. Time to think. Time to plan his words carefully. But time he did not have.
“Are you all right?” he asked lamely. He silently cursed himself for being such an idiot when it came to verbal socialization. Yuna’s eyes pleaded with him. For what, he could not tell. Yuna’s voice, however, did not waver.
“I’m fine. I just needed to be alone for a little while.” With that, she turned her gaze towards the setting sun once more. Tidus felt like hurling himself over the cliff they were standing on. How was he ever going to tell her the truth when he couldn’t even get past the preliminaries?
“Oh. Do you want me to leave?” he asked sheepishly.
“No. You can stay,” Yuna replied. Her stance remained the same. Tidus couldn’t take it anymore. He dove in, knowing there was a very good chance he’d be drowning in about 30 seconds.
“Yuna, I need to talk to you about something. There’s something I have, no…need, no…want to tell you,” he fumbled.
“I’m listening,” Yuna replied nonchalantly. It pained Tidus to hear and feel her so distant.
“Well, it’s like this…” Tidus began, cursing himself for starting it wrong. “You see, I… uh… I have something to tell you.” Yuna offered no words. “Um, well… I uh… Yuna… I won’t be here much longer.” Yuna slowly turned to face him, confusion in her eyes.
“What are you talking about, Tidus?” Tidus continued to curse himself.
“Yuna… I’m not… real. I don’t exist, I’m nothing, I came out of thin air, and pretty shortly, I’ll be returning to thin air!” Tidus almost yelled. He immediately wished he could have those five seconds back. Yuna dropped her gaze, obviously not sure what to say.
“Where… where will you go?” she asked in what almost sounded like a whisper.
“I really don’t know. I’ve never disappeared before,” Tidus replied, trying to add a little humor to the mix. But Yuna didn’t smile. Instead, she leaned over, unbuckled her boots, and slipped her feet out of them, casting them to one side. Tidus screwed up his face in confusion, not sure what she was doing. He watched as Yuna walked slowly to the other side of the cliff, allowing time for each toe to drag through the cool sand. He came to attention when he heard her speak.
“You know, I never really took the time to walk barefoot in the sand. It’s something I always wanted to do, but never had the time to do it.” Tidus followed her with his eyes, trying to follow her words at the same time. “Have you ever taken the time to walk barefoot through the sand, Tidus?”
“No. I never really thought about it until a minute or so ago,” he replied honestly.
“You should try it. It’s kind of… relaxing,” Yuna said, a tired smile on her face.
“Yuna… I need you to listen to me,” Tidus said, almost coldly.
“I am listening Tidus. You’re not saying anything,” Yuna replied. Tidus brushed off minor confusion, determined to tell Yuna what he felt, what he was feeling, what he knew he had to tell her.
“Yuna, I don’t know how to say this without sounding like an idiot, but I think I’m gonna tell you anyway,” he said without hesitation. Yuna continued to stare off into the horizon. “I told you that I’m going to disappear. I will. I will disappear when we defeat Sin. I told you because I wanted to save you any unnecessary hurt, err, heartache. I mean… well, what I mean is… I figured I should tell you before you got too, well…” At this, Tidus could not find anything else to say but what he was feeling. Seeing her there, standing all alone in the shadowy fire of the setting sun, hair rippling in rhythm with the breeze. There was nothing more he could say than what he knew he had to say.
“Yuna… I’m… I’m in love with you,” he admitted. He knew he would have to back himself up. “I know what you’re thinking, and I agree. I’m being pretty cocky by telling you not to fall in love with me lest you suffer heartache when I… disappear, but I’m trying my best to be sincere.” Inside, Tidus knew it was time to spill the entire bag of beans. “I-I’ve never been in love, Yuna. To tell the truth, I promised myself I would never fall in love, for fear that I’d loose my ‘manly image’. But the moment I saw you, tired, sweaty, dizzy, falling down the steps of the antechamber in Besaid… I knew I would never be able to love another human being the way I love you.” Yuna remained motionless, rigid. Tidus felt at a complete loss. “And I suppose… I suppose I just wanted to tell you before I lost my chance forever.” With that said, Tidus took off his shoes, threw them to one side, and ran as fast as he could to the ocean, sand flying behind him. He needed release, freedom. He hated leaving her side, but he knew he wouldn’t do her any good there. With a boyish hoot, he leapt into the air with all his strength and landed in the blue and white waves.
Feeling like he had nothing left to loose, Tidus let the waves carry him wherever. He purged his mind of thoughts and emotions, trying only to concentrate on this, his last moments of freedom. After this, he would solely dedicate himself to defeating Sin with the others and disappearing when the time came. This was it - the last of his freedom and indulgence as a living mortal. Waves rushed over him, water cooled his skin, and he dreamed. He dreamed of marrying Yuna and living in Besaid – at the top of the big waterfall! He dreamt of having children with her. He dreamt of being a father. He dreamt of growing old with Yuna, staying by her side until the day he took his last breath. As he dreamed, he wept – strong, silent tears that fell like rain.
He awoke what seemed like hours later. He opened his eyes, began to breathe normally. He thought about his dreams – and how he would never live them. He sat up, thinking about Yuna and the pleading look in her eye when he first confronted her on the cliff. He knew she was scared, terrified. There was no hiding it, even with Yuna. She had tried so hard throughout the entirety of the pilgrimage to abstain from reaching out to him, calling out to him when she needed help, guidance, strength to carry on. He knew she had wanted to. He wanted to be there for her, but understood the burden she carried. Suddenly, he heard footsteps in the sand behind him. He stood up and turned around. Yuna stood, quavering in the wind, tears falling down her pale cheeks like diamonds. Tidus immediately felt horrible for leaving her. She needed him now, more than anything, and he had gone and thrown himself into the ocean in a last desperate attempt to claim his humanity. He started to reach out to her.
“Yuna… I-“ he was cut short as Yuna raised her hand in a request for silence.
“All my life,” she almost whispered through the tears, “I always wondered what it would feel like to fall in love. I even thought about it during my apprenticeship, when I should have been studying. I always wanted to experience that… thrill that rolls through your stomach when you realize you’re in love. I always associated it with happy feelings. But now, now that I’ve experienced love for myself… I must say… it has to be the most painful experience of my life.” She began to weep silently. Tidus couldn’t move. He felt frozen. Yuna continued through her tears, “I love you Tidus! I’ve loved you since the first moment I saw you. I just knew there was something wonderful about you… something no one else had. And I was right. You have a demonstrable spirit. When I first started out on my pilgrimage, I was horribly insecure. I was always thinking, ‘will I? Should I? When? How? Where? For what reason?’. I would have easily given up… if it hadn’t been for you. You showed me that even though I’m young and inexperienced, I have what it takes… deep down inside, where it counts. And that, Tidus, is why I love you.”
Tidus couldn’t speak. He knew no words other than “Yuna ”. She loved him, every bit as much as he loved her. She’d been hiding it the whole time, never sharing, never opening up to him. Who could blame her? She always had the horrible reminder that once Sin was defeated, her life would end.
“Yuna...” he tried, but could go no farther. He had kissed her once, and he would do it again. He took two strides toward her, and stood in front of her. Her gaze was cast downwards so as to hide her tears. Tidus took his hand, gently took Yuna’s chin and brought it to his eye level.
“I will always love you, Yuna. You and no one else.” With that, he brought her close to him, feeling her warmth as her body melded with his. He used his other hand to stroke her face lovingly, brushing her tears away. Never had he imagined that two bodies could fit together so perfectly as theirs did. He searched her eyes, looking for any signs of fear. He moved his left hand to the middle of her back, using his right hand to support her chin. Closing his eyes, he brought her lips to his, kissing her full and soft. Yuna shuddered for a moment, not sure what to do. A moment passed and she let her mouth relax, breathing deeply. Tidus took his time, savoring every taste. Yuna’s lips softened, moving in sync with his own. Never had he felt such love as now, as he held the delicate Yuna in his arms, saltwater from his hair dripping down and landing on her pale cheeks. He moved his arms to caress her from behind, and she slowly wrapped hers around his neck. Water from his swim had almost drenched her now, making her look like a beautiful flower covered in raindrops. Tidus skimmed his lips over her cheeks, breathing softly as he went. Yuna lowered her face, allowing him to touch her hair with his lips. He ran his right hand through her hair as he kissed, pressing his lips ever so gently to her temple. Yuna sighed, and Tidus brought her face to meet his, eye to eye. Tears were running down her cheeks. Her whole body was trembling.
“I-I’m cold,” she whispered. Tidus moved her closer, wrapping his arms around her till she was hard against his body. He couldn’t bear to let go. He knew that if he let go, it would all be over. Yuna sensed his anxiety and trailed her hands up his shoulders, letting her palms rest against his neck. Her hands were so cold. Tidus lowered his mouth, gently kissing them. He looked into her eyes, knowing what he’d find there. Pain, anguish, confusion, fear… It was all there. Tidus softly kissed her eyelids, making sure to taste her tears as he did so. His heart tore as she gently pushed herself against him, wanting more but being too lady-like to ask for it. He wanted so much to smother her in violent kisses, to throw her down on the sand and make passionate love to her, shaking both of them from the nightmare that had enveloped them. But he couldn’t. He knew she would give into him, letting him take what he wanted without asking for anything in return. But he just couldn’t. Not while she lay against him, tears falling from her eyes to trail down his chest, heart beating so close to his own. For one single, amazing moment, he felt real… even though he knew he wasn’t. He held Yuna tightly, obliging her need with full, crushing kisses. Her breath quickened, and a small whimper of desire escaped her throat. Tidus released her lips, holding her head to his chest. Tears were brimming in his own eyes now. He never in his whole life thought he could feel so strongly for one human being. He was terrified at the thought of giving her up, letting go of the one person he loved more than life itself.
“Yuna…” he said quietly, letting all else rest for a moment.
“Yes, Tidus,” came the reply. Tidus brought his lips to her forehead, kissing her gently.
“I’m sorry. I’m sorry for having to leave you. I’m sorry for thinking only of myself. I’m sorry for… for everything,” he said, tired of his own excuses. Yuna brought her face to his, a stern look in her eyes.
“You have nothing to apologize for, Tidus. You… you are…” but she couldn’t finish. Tidus’ heart melted, feeling for her in her loss of words. He took her tightly in his arms, almost crushing her. But she didn’t protest. For some time they only wept together, knowing no other way to express what needed to be expressed. As his tears began to slow, Tidus delivered strong, powerful kisses to Yuna’s lips, the corner of her mouth, her eyes, her forehead, her hair, anything he had a desire to taste. He slid his hands down her alabaster shoulders, feeling her quiver at his touch. He kissed her shoulders, her neck, and moved once again to her lips. Now Yuna began to release. She grasped his back in a tight hold, nails biting into his skin. She pushed as hard against his body as she could, delivering soft, feminine kisses to his face. Tidus felt her against his body, soft yet quite firm for a woman. He loved her… that was all he could think about. He loved her, and he didn’t know how to stop. What was worse, she loved him. Tidus began to weep again as he thought of her in the future, standing all alone, needing him, wishing he was there. But he wouldn’t, he couldn’t be there. His heart ached so badly he was sure it would burst against Yuna’s chest, ending what life he had there on the Zanarkand shore. But Yuna found him, brought him out of the dark. She ran her hands through his hair, speaking his name softly through their locked lips. Tidus held on to her, reassuring her that he was still there. With that, Yuna crushed his lips with her own, tasting him, grasping his shoulders with her hands. Tidus jumped as she lightly bit his bottom lip. He couldn’t hold himself back. He returned her kisses with his own, powerful kisses, barely leaving her room to breathe. He took her face in his hands, wanting more than what was there. His hands clutched at her hair, and Yuna gave a small cry of pain as he tightened his grip, not wanting to let go. Just as he was sure he wouldn’t be able to keep himself from taking her, she pulled away. She looked at him, understanding in her eyes. Tidus stopped, realizing that she was abstaining from going any further.
“I love you Tidus. I always will. Nothing, and I mean nothing will ever change that,” she said quietly. She kissed him full and soft one last time, Tidus’ heart thudding as he felt her presence near him once more. With that, Yuna turned around, wiped her tears away, and headed back to camp.
Tidus stood stunned, his feet half buried in the cool sand. Something tugged at him, and he knew he just had to say it.
“I love you too, Yuna,” he whispered, the waves breaking on the shore behind him. Nothing, he swore, and he meant nothing would ever change that. Taking one last wistful look at the sea, Tidus began making his own way back to camp.