Mist & Shadow - Epilogue

Mornië fought her way through a wall of darkness and pain to conciousness. She slowly opened her eyes. It took several minutes for her eyes to adjust to the light. She turned her head slowly and noticed that her hair was clean, a state it had not been in for longer than she cared to admit.

Her gaze then fell on a sleeping figure at her bedside. Athrun, it appeared had fallen asleep in his chair with his head resting on the edge of her bed.

She weakly tried to move a little, but stopped, grimacing in pain. She remembered everything now. She turned her gaze to Athrun's sleeping form, his dark hair falling over his face. "But I was dead..." she tried to sort her thoughts.

Athrun's voice crept into the back of her mind, like something she had heard, but hadn't really. He had said... that he loved her. Had it been a dream? She reached out a weak hand and let the tips of her fingers graze against the sleeping elf's hair, before letting it fall limply back to the bed; she was too weak. She closed her eyes again, fighting back the pain that threatened to send her back into darkness again.

Athrun stirred slightly, and she opened her eyes, her eyes meeting his. Athrun slowly lifted his head. He had hoped against all hope that she would wake up, and, now that she had, he was so overjoyed he couldn't speak.

"I thought you were dead," she finally broke the silence, her eyes still on his.

Athrun's face lit up with a tired grin as he gave a strained laugh. "Look who's talking. You had me scared."

Mornië smiled weakly. "Sorry," she said dryly with a small grin, then her face became serious again. "How did you survive?"

"Thalion missed," he gave a rueful grin, "n Amarth didn't." He gestured to the band of cloth that was tied around his head, which Mornië hadn't noticed before. "I guess they just left me for dead."

"I'm glad you're not," Mornië said quietly.

Athrun ran a hand over her cheek. "Did you mean what you said?" he asked quietly clasping one of her hands in his.

She looked at him confused for a second before she understood what he was talking about. "Every word."

"So did I," Athrun said quietly. A few moments passed. "I thought you were dead Mornië," Athrun finally said. She could see the pain in his eyes. "Seeing you lying there, surrounded by your own blood, your skin ashen... I... I could only think of what a fool I had been." Mornië couldn't say anything.

"You're not a fool Athrun," she finally managed.

Athrun met her eyes. "Yes I am. I didn't believe you or listen when you tried to explain. I didn't trust what my heart told me. And I'm even more a fool because..." He looked down, fumbling for something in his tunic. "Because I didn't do this a long time ago." Mornië looked confused.

Athrun sank to his knees beside her bed, holding something in his hand she couldn't see. He laughed a little. "You have no idea how long I have practised these words in my mind, yet when it comes down to it I'll probably still sound like a simpleton." He took her hand.

"Mornië," he looked into her eyes almost pleadingly, "I would be the most honoured, and happy, elf in all the world, if..." he placed the item in her hand, "If you would marry me?" Mornië looked down at what he had put in her hand, and gasped a little in surprise. It was a worn, faded, and crumpled paper flower; the same he had given her in Lorien, and the same she had later returned. Athrun looked at her hopefully.

Mornië closed her eyes as the tears began to flow. She sniffed and look at Athrun. "What did I ever do to deserve this?" She clutched the flower as if it were her last life line. She slowly raised one hand to touch his face. "I thought once I could live without you but wouldn't want to, and now I can't do either. Yes."

Athrun's face broke into a relieved boyish grin that almost made Mornië laugh. He leaned over impulsively and kissed her gently. "Thank you," he finally said.

"So," Mornië said after a while, "Do I get those daggers back too?"

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