Do You Remember Love?Macross 7, Max/Miria. R+/NC-17: explicit sexual situations
Penitence and Eternity FFX, Auron/Braska. SPOILERS: end of game. NC-17: explicit sexual situations.
Penitence and Eternity

They look so young, Tidus and Yuna. They lie together near the fire to keep warm, in an unconscious mirror of the past. And I sit here, watching them now as I did ten years ago.

It was here, on Mt. Gagazet, that Jecht finally understood, I believe, what Braska and I had set out to do. Summoners who defeated Sin never returned, nor did their guardians. We went together, knowingly, to our deaths.

Jecht reached the top of Mt. Gagazet first: he was always eager, and moved quickly. I walked slowly, wanting to delay the end as long as possible. Braska walked between us, with his long, slow, purposeful stride.

"Braska, wait," I called, and he stopped and turned toward me. I quickened my pace to meet him, and he looked at me with an odd, sad smile.

"Do you still dread crossing this mountain, Auron?"

I clasped his shoulder and raised my eyes to meet his. "I do not fear what lies on the other side of this mountain, friend. I would be faithless if I turned back, and a coward."

He raised his hands to my shoulders and held me close. "I thank you. This is harder than I expected." He rested his forehead against mine, and I wrapped my arms around his waist.

I didn't fear the end, standing there on Mt. Gagazet. I knew we would go to Zanarkand, get the Final Summon, face Sin, and probably die. I dreaded the last day together, and the last night: Knowing I could no longer delay the inevitable, yet wanting to as long as possible.

He let me go, and smiled another sad smile. "Come, Auron. Jecht has probably started to wonder whether something has happened." He turned around and continued walking up the mountain, and I walked next to him.

Tidus wants to find a way to defeat Sin without Yuna dying. I had wanted the same, but I hadn't had a plan. As strongly as I'd desired it, I was unable to save Braska.

Jecht had a small fire started and had already put some snow in a pot to melt and boil. He shouted a greeting, but his demeanor had changed: he no longer seemed arrogant or glib, but resigned to perform a duty and hiding his fear with a light-hearted fa├žade. Had I changed, or had he?

Packs were tossed onto the snow, and we brought out some of the food we had purchased in the Ronso village. Jecht placed it over the fire, and I walked off to search for firewood.

Thinking about Zanarkand and defeating Sin, I became angry. Why did Braska have to die? I hadn't heard many tales of a summoner with two guardians, and I didn't know whether both Jecht and I would die, or which one of us. Jecht had a home, a young son, in Zanarkand, whither there was little chance of returning. 'What about Braska's daughter?' I screamed in my mind. 'Curse Sin.' I could see no justice in the pilgrimage. I bent down to pick up a branch, and a slender white hand grasped mine.

I looked up into Braska's eyes, and I saw a fire behind them that made words unnecessary. He had taken off his headdress, and it lay on the snow next to his outer robe. He caressed my face, and my robe found its way to the snow beside his.

I leaned against his body, pushing it down into the snow. His hands worked on the front of his underrobe to reveal his familiar torso - slender, white, unscarred. I pressed my lips to his throat, his chest, a cold-hardened nipple. He gasped, a soft moan, and pressed his hips into mine.

My breeches joined the pile of discarded clothes. It was cold - desperately cold - but I didn't care. Braska shivered under my touch, begged me with eyes and plaintive whimpers to warm him. I covered his body with mine and made love to him, grasping for eternity in melting snow.

We lingered there for a short while, savoring each other. His fingers explored my torso, and his face twisted into a frown when he found a new scar or a healing wound.

"You should have let me heal these for you." Again, the sad smile.

"It's nothing." And now it makes no difference. His fingers traced the pattern of fine lines across my chest and stomach.

"Are you having doubts?"

How could I answer that? I wanted to defeat Sin for good, but if that meant he had to die, I wanted to do it some other way. I didn't know of any other way, and I didn't want to lose Braska. I shook my head and began dressing again: I was starting to feel the cold.

We returned to the camp with an armful each of firewood. If Jecht thought anything about our wet clothes and long absence, he said nothing. He understood.

That night, I watched Braska while he slept near Jecht and the fire. Sleep turned the grim resolve he wore into a quiet calm. A determined expression had settled on Jecht's face, and it remained while he slept. They knew what they had to do. I lay behind Braska and held my chest to his back. I had made my bittersweet decision as well.

"If you make it through, take care of Yuna for me," he whispered.

"Of course."

Tonight Tidus' face wears that same resolve as his father's, yet his goal is mine. He understands what defeating Sin means, for himself, for Spira, and for Yuna. Does he know what it means for me? Penitence and eternity in melting snow.

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