Vision Of Escaflowne Fan Fiction ❯ Dream Desire ❯ A Simple Gift ( Chapter 5 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

I tell you something, this story was going to be kind of short, but subplots and situations just seem to keep creeping up in my head! I will make it to the end though, even if it's kind of slow going. And I'd really like to thank all of you for sticking with this story! It's encouraging to know I have a reader base! I'm kind of too lazy to go through and find out the exact layout of Dornkirk's ship and how it all worked, so there will be liberties taken. Just go with it. ^_^ Enjoy chapter 5!

Dream Desire: Chapter 5
A Simple Gift

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Hitomi walked through the door Van held open for her and moved to the side, toeing off her sandals as Van entered. So far it had been a normal night for the two, a walk through a local park on the way to a nice but casual restaurant (Van's treat of course), but then Van had invited her over to his apartment. In this world as with Gaea, Van's parents had been rich and important. And also the same in both worlds, they had died. On Gaea they had left Van with a quest for vengeance and honor, but on earth he was left with a healthy inheritance that could provide for him well into old age and allowed for him to have his own lavish apartment in the economic housing disaster that was Japan.

Her friends seemed much better off on earth then in their own world. No one was trying to kill each other, having disastrous marriages, going insane, or having illegitimate children. . . Although, that might have happened with Allen anyway, since many of Gaea's situations seemed to be carrying over. But all that had happened five years ago. Hitomi really had no idea of what her friends had been up to after that. In was a running argument in her head whether Van and the others should be returned to Gaea or if they could stay here for the rest of their lives. So far both sides were coming out almost equal.

Hitomi was brought back to the present when Van gently grabbed her hand and led her out of the entryway and into the living room. They stood together in the darkened room, Van not having let go of Hitomi's hand but facing away from her. He ran his thumb lightly over her palm.

"I know. . . I know you're going through some weird times with your memory and all. And I don't know how to help you with it, or what exactly to believe. But there's something that will never change, no matter where I'm from or who I am."

Van slowly turned around to face Hitomi, placing her hand flat on his heart. She looked at his hand over hers and saw the gentle rising of his chest, felt the rapid beat of his heart. She looked up from his chest and into a heart-wrenching face; black bangs falling over devoted eyes and delicate mouth open just a fraction. It was enough to make Hitomi draw in a startled breath. This was it, it had to be. This was what she had been waiting for so long.

"I love you."

Her heart had grown wings and taken off in a flight of joy. She desperately lifted herself up to Van's level, meeting his lips in a passionate kiss. Their two hands were crushed between their bodies, but neither minded a bit. Van could now feel Hitomi's heart beating fast as his own. Their other arms were used to pull each other even closer, Van's wrapping around the small of Hitomi's back while Hitomi's was flung around his neck. The kiss eventually broke and Hitomi sunk back down a few inches to stare up at Van's flushed face. She pulled her hand our from between their bodies and made it join her other arm. Van did the same with his and they imitated a slow dance position. Hitomi looked away finally, burying her face in his chest when Van squeezed her lightly.

She had loved him since she first got to Gaea, though she never would have admitted it then. She had loved him for everything he was, and for all that he wasn't. She wanted to help him and be with him forever. And when Hitomi had left Gaea, there was no one to replace him on earth, and there never would be. And finally, *finally* she had the chance to tell him and to know he loved her back just as much. So she let him know, whispering the three words over and over into his chest. When he looked down to hear what she was saying, Hitomi looked up at him again and said it pointblank to his face.

"I love you. I've always loved you. I always will."

Now it was Van's turn to feel the euphoria and he grabbed Hitomi around the waist, smile bright enough to blind, and swung her around a few times before setting her back down and clutching her tightly to him. Both were smiling and giddy from admitting their love for each other at last.

"Stay with me tonight?" Van asked, breathing heavily. Hitomi tensed up a little. Stay the night? With Van? They were both adults now, but Hitomi hadn't been with anyone since Gaea. She wasn't sure if she was ready for what "stay the night" implied. But this was Van. This was the man she'd been wanting to be with her whole life. There was no one besides him she would ever be with, so there was nothing to be afraid of.

Van felt her hesitation and wanted to smack his head for saying something like that. He let Hitomi go and stepped back a bit, hands fiddling with the ends of his crimson shirt and face matching the clothing's color. He looked anywhere but at Hitomi.

"I didn't mean. . . I didn't mean that like it sounded. I just wanted to be with you," he flinched at his word choice yet again. "Just to hold you, and stay with you. That's -" he was cut off as Hitomi placed a finger over his mouth. He started to speak again but she shook her head.

"It wouldn't matter, even if you did mean it that way. I'll stay the night," she told him. He said nothing, just nodded slowly. Though it was early, Van and Hitomi retired to his bedroom for the night.

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They had been traveling for three hours in the ruins. Though they finally had the goal of getting to the center, the crash destroyed many pathways and the pair often had to backtrack and find another way. The flame on the torch was getting low so Gaddes pulled out a second torch and lit it with the first, tossing the nearly dead flame to the side. Celena watched it land and shouted out. Gaddes went to draw his sword but Allen's sister stopped him. She knelt down and began sweeping the ground with her hands. The discarded torch finally died out but Gaddes kept Celena's work area well lit with the new burning torch. When she pulled back a little, the guard could finally see why she had become so excited. There was a hatch in the floor covered with rubble and dirt, but that was easily pushed aside. The door in the floor lifted up easily and revealed a ladder going down.

"Here. We have to go in here. I don't know how I know this, but this ladder leads to the fate altering machine," Celena told Gaddes. Her time as Dilandeau aboard the ship must have given her the knowledge, but Gaddes decided it better not to mention the possibility. He leaned over the hole but couldn't see the bottom. They began climbing down anyway, Celena knowing where to go and Gaddes trusting her. Roughly halfway down, according to Celena's calculation, Gaddes' hand slipped and he dropped the torch. Both watched it fall, revealing the rest of the ladder length before going out with a sudden hiss. Water. How deep neither could tell, so they just decided to keep going.

Luckily the water only reached their waists at the bottom of the ladder, but the hallway they needed to get through was angled down and eventually fully underwater. There must have been a leak in the structure above for the water to have collected here. They walked as far as they could before becoming submerged and stopped to make a plan of action.

"There's a door at the end of this hallway that opens into a large domed room where he kept the machine. Can you hold your breath very long?" Celena asked, voice sounding odd in the water filled area.

"Well, I can hold it as long as we need to open that door," he responded glibly. "After that we'll have to see what happens." Celena gave him a small smirk before taking in a deep breath and diving. Gaddes chuckled lightly before following suit. They made it to the door with out incident, but the door itself became a problem as it had no handle. Somehow the door was sealed air tight, no leaks or cracks anywhere. They spent too much time searching for someway to push the door open and were rapidly running out of air. Gaddes grabbed Celena's arm and motioned for them to swim back but she shook her head, determined to open the door. Becoming lightheaded, Gaddes was about to forcefully pull Celena to safety when a dark glow surrounded the door and it popped open, spilling Celena, Gaddes, and the water into a new room. Gaddes used his quick reflexes to grab onto the edge of the lift that would normally take them down to the floor, catching himself before he was flung over the edge. He threw out an arm and snagged Celena before she was swept over the edge with the rest of the water. They held on tight until the water from the hallway finally emptied itself out over them. When it was clear, Gaddes hauled Celena up high enough so she could grab the edge herself and then they both pulled themselves up to safety. The two sat back to back in the middle of the lift, leaning heavily on each other and taking in great gasps of air.

"Well that was more excitement than I was ready for," Gaddes panted out, squeezing his ponytail of excess water. He had let his hair grow out a bit, but not too much, although Allen proved you could be an astonishing warrior even with long hair. Celena's hair dripped in tendrils over her shoulders and back. She needed to look different from the creature she had been, so she gre her long platinum locks out to mid-back. She took a cue from Gaddes and began wringing out her hair as well.

"I owe you my thanks, Gaddes," she said, giving up on her hair and just leaning against him.

"My pleasure, mt lady," he answered, enjoying the warmth that was created between the two of them. He scanned the area to see what they could do next. They were high on the wall in a large chamber on an elevator that seemed to have no controls. There was a dark ceiling above them, and a dark floor (now flooded with water) below them.

"Celena dear, how are we going to get down?"

She slowly stood up and inspected the elevator unit. She tapped on the wall next to the lift until she heard a hollow thunk. Her hand covered the hollow area and a piece of the wall lifted up, revealing a switch.

"Simple Gaddes. We press the down button."

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Van sat up in bed, sheets pooling to his waist and revealing his bare torso. Hitomi stayed under the covers and uttered a questioning hum. Van smiled at her sleepiness and ruffled her hair affectionately.

"I forgot, I bought you a present," he answered her silent question. He rummaged through the dresser next to the bed and pulled out a small rectangular box. Without letting her see, Van opened the box and pulled out the gift from inside.

"I saw it the other day and it just struck me as something you'd like," he explained and showed her his find. The chain was different then she remembered, but the pendant was the same. It seemed to reach out to her, calling her. She reached out in a trance and closed her hand around the pendant. It pulsed in her hand and blue light could be seen through the cracks between her fingers. The call was louder now. Her vision began to white out and the last thing she saw was Van's desperate face shouting her name. Then she was gone.

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They had miraculously made it down with no problems. The elevator functioned perfectly and it brought them to the main floor. Only when they had gotten off did the machine short out, sending sparks flying uselessly into the water. Neither Gaddes or Celena paid any attention to the elevator or the fact they needed to find a new way out. Their gazes were transfixed on the glowing shards of glass laying under the thin layer of water, making the whole floor sparkle and shine. Celena reached down to pick one up.

"Wait, don't!" Gaddes yelled, grabbing her shoulder to try and stop her, but it was too late. Celena's slim fingers touched the glowing glass and a power ran through her arm and into Gaddes as well. They looked at each other in shock before disappearing in a flash of light.

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And another chapter closed. It's up to you to decide whether Van and Hitomi actually did anything under the sheets. Heehee. Where are Gaddes, Celena, and Hitomi being taken? How did the door open? How will Van react? What's really happening?! Find out some of the answers on the next installment of Dream Desire!