Series: Tales of Vesperia
A/N: Very short gift ficlet I wrote for Franniel on tumblr. ♡
Disclaimer: The characters and settings in this story are from Tales of Vesperia and do not belong to me.
The deep blue of a summer night was the color of endless possibility. As the sunset was washed away in a flood of cobalt, Flynn got up from his desk and lit the single candle that sat on the windowsill. He stood for a moment, watching the tiny flame swaying in the gentle breeze. It was a spot of brightness against the dark silhouettes of trees, against the night sky that was a bowl of blue glass holding the stars. The flame was warmth, a speck of golden light, a pinprick beacon, a silent prayer offered up as the darkness of night settled in. Flynn looked out across the rooftops of the capital, across the wall that could no longer hold in the sprawl of the city, across fields and plains and trailing ribbons of road and stream. He gazed out to the horizon where all things became one in darkness, and he wished Yuri well this night, as he did every night.
Autumn arrived with one of Yuri's letters, always full of odd bits of news and more information about his adventures than himself. Flynn smiled as he read it, laughing in parts because Yuri shone through so clearly in his messy writing. Knowing him as well as he did, Flynn could picture Yuri in the midst of the events described as easily as if he had been there himself. The letters were bright spots amid Flynn's days, arriving more infrequently than he liked, but more often than he might have expected. Yuri's life in the guild and Flynn's work as Commandant had kept them apart longer than they had ever been since childhood. As he lit the candle sitting on his windowsill, Flynn wondered if it was only a figment of his imagination that lent a sense of protectiveness to Yuri's words. They'd always had each other to lean on, but now when Flynn hit a wall or felt hopelessness and exhaustion weighing him down as the enormity of his task loomed up to dominate his thoughts, he had only words on paper and an echo of Yuri's voice in his mind to tell him that he was doing a good job. Yuri scolded him in his careless way not to work too hard, and Flynn smiled past the feeble light of the candle and hoped that Yuri's path suited him as well as his letters implied.
Frost was creeping in around the edges of the windows like fragile, white ferns. Flynn caught himself staring at the woolen sky outside and shivered. He tidied up his desk, realizing that he would not be getting any more work done that evening, and went to stand by the window. The candle was doubled, its pale reflection seeming to hold back the icy tendrils creeping inwards over the pane before it. Flynn smiled and looked away from the flame. The road stretching away from the capital was still clear for the time being, but a fine snow had begun to fall. Yuri had sent word that he would return by midwinter, but that was still several long days away. Lifting the candle, Flynn bowed his head over it and closed his eyes. His prayer was brief, and as he looked up again, he smiled wryly at his hope that Yuri would see the tiny light as he approached the city. Undoubtedly, it would be invisible except possibly from the palace grounds. He kept it lit, however, as he always did. Carrying it into his bedroom, he set it on the windowsill there. As he prepared for bed, he ignored the chill that seeped in without the curtain to hold it back.
The sheets still smelled like Yuri, and Flynn felt a foolish possessiveness over them when he thought of the maids coming to have them sent to the laundry and replaced with fresh ones. Yuri had been in high spirits during his visit, vitality shining from his eyes, and the sight of him thriving had eased Flynn's heart. He was sure that it hadn't been his imagination when he'd sensed the same relief in Yuri. Flynn rolled onto his side, peering cautiously into the bright, spring sunlight that flooded his room. On the windowsill, the candle guttered, nearly burned out now that morning had arrived, its flame practically invisible in the light. He stared at it, watching it burn down as he put off the moment when he would have to leave the warmth of his bed. Once it was out, he rose and crossed to the window. The scent of smoke filled his nose as he picked up the wax-encrusted candlestick. During Yuri's time in Zaphias, Flynn had set aside his ritual. Yuri had left yesterday morning, however, and as darkness had fallen that evening, Flynn had lit a candle for him and set it in the window, just as he would do every night until Yuri returned. The light would welcome him home whenever he chose to come back, but, until then, Flynn would accompany it with a heartfelt prayer as Yuri walked his own path:
Please be well.