Story: A new life (chapter 18)

Authors: Tukuyomi

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Chapter 18

Title: Epilogue - A new life

With heavy shopping bags full of food, Kidd crossed the big wooden bridge leading to her house. It was still early and foggy, so Kidd couldn’t see the harbour of Truce Village yet. Usually, she stopped at this bridge for a while, to simply watch the ships at the harbour or the ocean below in general. She just loved this peace and silence every morning, and she appreciated it every day anew.

But today she didn’t have that much time to stop and watch. She didn’t want to let the others wait, she was sure they were pretty hungry. So she simply passed the old bridge and after a few minutes, she arrived at her house.

She looked up to the sign above the door. This time, she tried to remind herself to paint it anew, after these years, one could hardly see the letters anymore. A few years ago, when it was new, one could read “Petite Dragon” standing in big letters on it.

Somehow, with all the bags in her arms, Kidd managed to knock at the door. It wasn’t long until a young woman of sixteen years opened the door.

“Good morning, auntie Kidd!”, the girl exclaimed happily and quickly took a few of Kidd’s bags. Together they took them to the kitchen.

“Good ta see you’re already awake, Trisha. I could use a little help.”, Kidd said gratefully.

Trisha and Kidd began to take the food out of the bags and put it into the fridge. After that they began to slice the bread, prepare the cocoa and tea and set the table with everything needed for a breakfast. Trisha was humming all the while, happy as always.

Soon they heard heavy footsteps from the stairs and shortly after that the kitchen door opened slowly, creaking.

“Morning!”, Kidd and Trisha said in unison. The figure shuffled towards them and yawned while stretching the arms.

“My, ya don’t look good, Harle.”, Kidd said and pointed at Harle’s hair, which stood in all directions, and the bags under her eyes. Indeed, standing there in the kitchen in her pink pyjamas, with her shoulders down and her hair and eyes like that, Harle really looked awful.

“Merci beaucoup.”, Harle simply said and walked past them towards the fridge. Trisha just giggled and Kidd gave Harle a quick kiss on the cheek.

“You’re up late today, how come?”, Trisha asked Harle, who was already helping them in preparing the breakfast.

Harle just shrugged and yawned again, she didn’t bother to explain everything right now. “Someone waz quite complicated lazt nuit.”

Both Kidd and Trisha laughed now, knowing exactly whom Harle was referring to.

Soon the three of them were finished. The huge wooden table was set and everything was in its place. Harle inhaled deeply, enjoying the scent of fresh bread and tea.

“Guess its my turn today?”, Trisha asked with a sigh and received a nod from Kidd. So she left the kitchen and soon the ringing of a bell could be heard throughout the house.

“Guezz moi should get drezzed.”, Harle said and went back upstairs, from which she returned after a few minutes.

Right after Harle came down again, fully dressed and with combed hair, both of them already heard the shouting and laughing coming closer to the kitchen. A few seconds passed until the kitchen door burst open and a whole bunch of children came running inside, quickly searching for a place to sit.

Trisha followed, closing the door behind her. Soon everyone found a chair and sat down, Kidd at one end of the table, Harle at the other. Trisha sat in the middle.

“Morning guys!”, Kidd shouted happily and the kids immediately answered.

“Good morning Kidd and Harle!”, they shouted in (almost) perfect unison.

“Counting!”, Kidd shouted, trying to sound a little like an military officer.

The children began counting, beginning with Leana, who sat next to Harle.












Kidd nodded with each number mentioned, but abruptly stopped.

“Eleven? Who’s missin’?”, she asked.

The kids looked around curiously.

“Feena is.”, Carol said shyly.

“Uh, her again. Geez Trisha, ya shouldn’t forget someone.”, Kidd said with a smirk.

“Geez, Trisha!”, the kids imitated, laughing. Trisha stuck her tongue out at them and stood up.

“I’ll go.”, Kidd said to her and Trisha sat down again, smiling.

“Ya don’t have ta wait for us.” Kidd waved and left.

Now the children looked at Harle expectantly.

“Bon appetit.”, she said cheerily and everyone began to eat. Soon the room was filled with shouting and laughter again. The children told each other about the dreams they had had last night, about what they wanted to do today and so on.

Harle was grateful for every minute she could enjoy hearing the laughter of these children. It made her feel happy and content beyond words.

Almost twelve years had passed since Harle and Kidd defeated the dragons. Twelve years, which seemed so awfully short when Harle thought back. Time sure passed quickly when it was spent in happiness.

It was seven years ago, when Harle and Kidd had finally opened this orphanage. It had been Harle’s idea and Kidd had been quite surprised by it. She had never thought Harle would really do such a thing, but now both of them were happy with it and it had turned out just fine. They had built the orphanage exactly in the same place as the previous one. The place where Lucca had once lived with her kids. To Harle, it was the best thing to do to make up for the things she had done. Of course, a place like this reminded her about the things she had done every day, but that was something Harle just had to deal with. After all, guilt never vanished completely.

However, compared to the joy she felt everyday being with these children, her guilt only occupied a tiny place within her heart, not big enough to hurt her anymore.

Harle sipped at her cup of tea, noticing it was still too hot to drink. She looked around and saw Trisha looking at her, with a loving smile on her face. To Trisha, Harle was a mother, a sister and the best friend all in one. She adored Harle completely, but Kidd as well, even if not as much as Harle. Trisha reminded herself of the time she had first met Harle every single day. And she was overly grateful she could live here with them. Trisha had been the first one to live in this house, together with Kidd and Harle.

When Trisha had been nine, she had still lived in Porre. However, living may be not the best word to describe it. Her clothes had been not more than rags and she had lived from stealing money. She had been poor, but she hadn’t been alone. She had known another girl who shared the same fate. She had lost her parents as well. Together, they had been even a bit happy, but then the girl had died in an accident and Trisha had been all alone again. But shortly after that, she had met Harle for the second time, and Kidd as well. They had come to Porre on a ship and Kidd had caught Trisha while trying to steal Kidd’s money. Harle had recognized her, even after five years. They had immediately taken Trisha with her and together, they had opened the orphanage. Now that Trisha was sixteen, she could leave them and start a life on her own, but instead she decided to help Harle and Kidd with the children, because twelve children really were a lot of work for two people alone. And also, she wanted to give those children what she herself had received from Harle and Kidd: Love.

Harle smiled back to Trisha and drank her tea. In the meantime, Kidd stood in front of the door to Feena’s room, which she shared with Leen, Carol and Leana.

She had already knocked three times, but Feena still didn’t answer her.

“Alright Feena, I’m comin’ in.” Kidd opened the door and found Feena sitting on her bed, reading a book.

“Hey lady, breakfast’s ready.”, Kidd said and sat down beside her. However, Feena didn’t respond.

With one quick move, Kidd snatched the book from her and stood up.

“Hey! Give it back!”, Feena shouted, trying to reach the book, which Kidd held high above her head.

“Ah, so the lady can speak. What is it? Just come eat breakfast with us. After that, ya can continue readin’. Deal?”

“No! I’m not hungry! Just give it back, Kidd!”, the girl shouted desperately.

“Don’t make such a fuss, Feena. Just come and eat. What’s so great ‘bout that book anyway?” Kidd looked at the cover of the book and began to read the first page. “...that’s not one of ours, is it? What kind of book is it?”, Kidd asked curiously.

At first Feena didn’t want to answer, but she thought it was better to do so if she wanted to have the book back. “It’s an adventure book.”

Kidd nodded. “Sounds pretty good. But where did ya get it?”

Feena was at a loss for answers. She looked around, trying to think of something.

“Was it a gift from someone?”, Kidd asked, knowing full well that this wasn’t the case.

Feena smiled and nodded. “Yes, that’s right! So please, give it back to me.”, she said, but Kidd could clearly see her dislike of using the word “please”.

“Who gave it to you?”, Kidd asked, smiling to herself. Again, Feena didn’t answer, she couldn’t possibly think of someone who would give her a present, especially a book.

“Just answer me and you get the book back.”, Kidd tried to lure an answer out of Feena. When she didn’t say anything, Kidd decided to solve the case.

“We didn’t steal it, didn’t we?”, Kidd asked, looking directly into Feena’s eyes, with an evil smile on her lips. But Feena quickly looked down in embarrassment.

“Ok, I get the idea. Ya went ta the bookstore in Truce, like ya always do. Then ya found this”, Kidd pointed on the book, “a bloody nice book for an adventure fan like ya, Feena. Unfortunately…”, Kidd looked dramatically at Feena, “this book was bloody expensive. So...the only solution was to steal it, isn’t that right?”

Feena still looked down, but nodded slightly, afraid that Kidd would get angry with her.

“No!”, Kidd said a bit louder than she had intended and she saw Feena jerk back. “That wasn’t the only solution. Ya could’ve asked me or Harle ta buy it.”

Finally Feena dared to look up again. Rubbing her eye with her palm, she answered: “But...but it was so expensive.”

“No buts. It was expensive, so what? Good books are always expensive. It’s not like we’re poor or anythin’. But know I understand...ya didn’t wanna eat breakfast so ya could read the book alone. Because if someone saw ya readin’ a book which isn’t one of ours, he or she would have told me about it. Isn’t that right?”, Kidd asked. She was a little proud of herself for being able to see right through the children. She knew exactly when they were lying or not, especially if it was Feena. Sometimes Kidd was amazed of how similar Feena was to herself back when she had been a child.

Feena wasn’t very close to the others, she was a little different. She was older than the others as well. Feena was already ten years old, but the age from the other children varied from 4-8, so she didn’t like playing with them that much, she always thought of herself as mature, while the others were just children. Kidd was nearly the same, and she too had always wanted adventures, just like Feena did.

“Yes...I stole the I have to give it back?”, Feena asked shyly, but still not giving up hope.

“Nah, ya don’t have ta give it back, but ya have ta pay for it. Understood?”

Feena smiled brightly and nodded eagerly.

“I’ll come with ya. Let’s go.” Kidd took Feena’s hand and they went out of the room, towards the front door.

“Where are you two going?”, Harle asked as she saw them passing the open kitchen door.

“Oh...uh...we’re just goin’ for a walk. Don’t worry ‘bout the breakfast. We’ll be back soon.” Kidd and Feena waved and left the house, heading for Truce.

Outside, Feena started to laugh brightly.

“What is it?”, Kidd asked with a puzzled look.

“I can’t believe you just lied to Harle. Aren’t you always telling me one should never, ever lie?”, Feena asked and smirked.

“Well...that wasn’t really a lie, was it? It would’ve taken so long ta explain everythin’, so I told her we’re going for a walk. It doesn’t make a difference anyway...”

“Riiiight...”, Feena said and giggled.

“Brat!”, Kidd said and ruffled Feena’s hair. “I didn’t lie only for ya, ya know. I have ta buy somethin’ in Truce and Harle mustn’t know about it.”

Feena looked up to Kidd and smiled. “Oh I know what you mean. For tomorrow, right?”

“Yup.” Kidd simply answered.

Soon they reached the bookstore and went to the man at the counter. Kidd laid her hands on Feena’s shoulders and pushed her forward.

“Uh...hi...”, Feena said to the man and blushed.

“Oh, hi there little girl. What do you want?”, he asked gently.

“Eh...this here”, she showed him the book, “I was here in this store yesterday...and...uh...I wanted to buy this book, because it’s really good...and then I took it with me...and I completely forgot to pay! Haha!” Feena started to laugh sheepishly and she knew she was making a fool of herself, but she didn’t care.

Feena quickly took the money Kidd had given her and handed it to the man.

“What a honest girl you are. Thank you very much.”, the man said and waved Feena goodbye as she left.

“I’m impressed.”, Kidd said when they were back outside, “I didn’t think he’d believe ya. You’re quite the actress.”

Feena smiled proudly, although she was a little surprised of the man as well.

“Anyway...”, Kidd gave Feena a little smack on the head, “I told ya not ta lie. It ain’t a good thing ta do. The same goes for stealin’! That’s bad as well...I guess.” Kidd remembered that she had stolen so many times, she couldn’t count it anymore. And she didn’t only steal when she was ten, like Feena. Kidd quickly dismissed those thoughts, smirking.

“So...let’s go to the jeweller’s over there. It won’t take long, I promise.”

Feena nodded and followed her into the shop. Inside, she was overwhelmed by all these shining rings, pendants and earrings. She didn’t believe it when she looked at the price tag for a silver ring.

“Hey Feena, come over here.” Feena walked over to Kidd, who showed her a pretty pendant. “How is that one? Ya think she’ll like it?”, Kidd asked.

“Tsk, how should I know what your girlfriend likes!”, Feena answered loudly and grinned evilly.

Kidd blushed when she saw the other customers look at her. Feena spoke so loud everyone in the shop could hear her.

“Was that really necessary?”, Kidd asked and gave Feena another smack. Kidd turned around and searched a bit more, until she found something she really liked. She paid for it and they left the shop. Then they made their way back to their house, this time stopping at the bridge for a little while.

While Kidd and Feena were away, the others had eaten up and Harle and Trisha had cleaned up. After that, the boys had gone outside in the garden to play knight with their wooden swords, while the girls were inside practicing new magic tricks.

Trisha went outside to look after the boys, which wasn’t exactly easy. Every two minutes she had to console at least one of them, because he got hit on the head or was pushed in the mud and so on. But Trisha didn’t mind at all. It was fun to watch the children play, especially when they referred to Trisha as the princess, who was to be saved from mighty villains. It always made Trisha feel loved.

While Trisha was outside, Harle was inside, helping the girls with their magic tricks. Harle showed them a lot of tricks, especially those containing cards, after all it was one of things she could do best. The girls were always eager to learn them, so they could fool the boys. But the tricks weren’t easy, especially the younger ones, such as Leen, who was only four years old, had some difficulties with it.

When Kidd and Feena came back, Feena immediately rushed to her room and continued reading her book. Kidd went to the kitchen to get herself something to drink. While she poured milk into her glass, Leana approached from behind.

“Bonjour, Kidd,”, she said.

Kidd turned around, with a surprised look on her face. Leana was only seven, but her pronunciation was quite good.

Leana saw how surprised Kidd was and stood proudly in front of her, her hands to her sides. Kidd had to suppress laughing as she saw the superior look on Leana’s face.

“Bonjour, ma petite.”, Kidd answered and grinned, then drank her milk. She could clearly see the smile fade from Leana’s face. Of course, she didn’t understand what Kidd was saying. With tears welling up in her eyes, she turned around and ran out of the kitchen. Kidd could hear her crying for Harle and sighed. She didn’t want to make her cry, but the children should learn never to be too proud of themselves. Kidd left the kitchen to look for her, but Leana was gone, and so was Harle.

So Kidd sat down on the couch and tried to relax.

“Hey, Kidd is back!”, one of the girls shouted and soon all girls gathered around Kidd.

“Tell us a story!”, the girl pleaded.

“Yes, a story!”, the others shouted and soon the boys came in as well, nobody wanted to miss any of Kidd’s great adventure stories. And even Feena, who had been totally engrossed in her book, came to listen. She always liked Kidd’s stories, even if she knew they were pretty exaggerated. Nobody could kill a dragon all by oneself, she always thought. Those things could only happen in fairy-tales. However, she liked Kidd’s stories, they were even better than the ones in her books.

Soon all children had gathered on the carpet in front of Kidd, even Leana came back, together with Harle.

“A story, huh?”, Kidd asked and tried to sound annoyed. The children nodded quickly.

“Alright, it was one day many years ago, when I was a pirate...”, Kidd started. Now every child completely concentrated on Kidd, nobody dared to speak and interrupt her. Harle watched them form afar, with a content smile on her face.

With Kidd telling her stories, the afternoon passed quickly and soon it began to get dark outside. Trisha rang the bell, which meant it was time to eat, just when Kidd finished. The children stood up and went to kitchen to eat the meal, which Harle had prepared while they were listening to the story.

Everyone sat down and waited for Harle’s signal. When Harle finally said: “Bon appetit!”, everyone grabbed the meal and began to eat as though they were almost starved.

When they finished, Kidd knew it was time to take Harle away from the house, so both of them went for a walk in the dark.

Now it was time for Trisha and the children to bake the cake for Harle. Again, it wasn’t easy for Trisha. Baking a cake together with twelve children was pretty complicated. Trisha tried her best with keeping everyone occupied with something, like turning on the oven and taking the flour from the cupboard.

To make things worse, the cake had to be huge, it had to be enough for fifteen people. Trisha just hoped Harle and Kidd would be away long enough.

Already outside the house, Harle was quite surprised by Kidd’s suggestion to take a walk. It was the second time today and normally, Kidd wasn’t a big fan of walks.

“Why did you want to take a walk, mon amour?”, Harle asked, taking Kidd’s hand as they walked.

“Why not? Look...”, Kidd pointed to the sky above, which was full of stars, shining brightly, “it’s such a pretty night.”

Harle nodded and decided not to ask further. She could think of the reason anyway and Kidd was such a poor liar. Not that this was a bad thing.

They stopped at the bridge and looked down to the harbour of Truce. Only the lights from the ships could be seen.

Harle laid her head onto Kidd’s shoulder and sighed.

“It iz so quiet here.”, she said dreamily.

“Yeah...”, Kidd answered and kissed Harle. Sometimes she missed those quiet nights, this peaceful time alone. With these children around them the whole day, they didn’t have that much time for each other like they had years ago. But hearing the children laugh made up for it anytime.

When they walked across the bridge and towards Truce, Kidd watched Harle intensely.

“Are ya happy, Harle?”, she asked, looking up to the sky.

When Harle started giggling, Kidd watched her curiously.

“What is it?”, she asked.

“You ask moi zat question every day. And moi alwayz tellz you ze same. Moi iz happy, mon amour. Trés happy.”, Harle answered and gave Kidd a quick kiss.

“That’s good.”

Together, they walked past the windows of the shops, taking a look at each one of them. Of course, the shops were already closed, but it was nice enough just to look through the windows.

Then Harle dragged Kidd to the window of the jeweller’s. Harle just loved to look at those pendants and rings.

“Oh, look at zat one.”, Harle said and pointed on a beautiful pendant. It was a rather large oval sapphire with a beautiful silver chain attached to it. On the back of the sapphire, there was a little silver plate which could serve as a nametag.

“Wow, now that’s pretty.”, Kidd said with sparkling eyes, “Don’t ya think?”

Harle nodded. “Oui, it’z truly beautiful. Too bad ze shop has closed already...”, she said and sighed.

“Don’t worry. I’ll bet it won’t be gone so soon. Ya can buy it later.”, Kidd said and laid her arm around Harle’s shoulders.

“You’re right.”, Harle answered and snuggled up to Kidd.

In the meantime, Trisha and the kids had successfully managed to make the kitchen look like a bomb had exploded in there. Trisha knew the kitchen wouldn’t be exactly clean after they baked, but she hadn’t expected it turn out as pure chaos.

Now that the children had gone to bed and the cake was in the oven, Trisha started cleaning up. The dough was spread throughout the kitchen, together with the flour, sugar and salt. Trisha was annoyed that she had to do all the cleaning alone, but reminding herself of how much fun the kids had had baking the cake, it was well worth it. Especially the fact that the children actually got along with each other surprised her greatly. Usually, the girls often started a little war with the boys, and vice versa. But today they had worked together, the older ones trying to explain certain things to the younger ones, not minding if it was a boy or a girl. Trisha asked herself if it would be a good idea to cook and bake with them more often.

The ringing at the door took Trisha off her thoughts. Seeing that the kitchen was a total mess, she just hoped Harle wouldn’t come in here, at least not today. Trisha quickly took off her apron and ran to the door, opening it with a bright smile.

“Oh, you’re back already?”, she said smiling, looking at Kidd first, then at Harle.

Kidd nodded, indicating she got the hint.

“Yeah, I’m quite tired now. C’mon Harle, let’s go to bed.” Harle nodded and followed Kidd inside, directly going upstairs to their room.

Trisha sighed in relief and went back to the kitchen. By now, the cake was ready and Trisha took it out of the oven. She spent another hour with skilfully decorating the huge cake until everything was finished. Trisha yawned and rubbed her eyes as she looked at it for one last time, then went to bed as well.

The entire night was unusually silent. Most nights, there was trouble in at least one of the rooms. But tonight, it was all quiet, mostly because the children were very tired from staying up late.

The morning came way too soon, for everyone except Kidd and Harle. In fact, Harle was the first to wake up. She had nothing to do, so she already wanted to go down, but Kidd woke up just in time to stop her. Dragging Harle back into bed, she was sure she could keep her there for at least two more hours, and Harle didn’t really mind either.

Trisha woke up shortly after them. Having her room directly next to Kidd and Harle’s, she could already hear them laughing and giggling, so Trisha quickly got out of her bed, got dressed and left her room. She tip-toed past Kidd and Harle’s room and went down the stairs, careful not to make any noise.

Downstairs, she went to the kitchen and set the table, placing the big cake in the middle of it. Then she woke up the children. She told them to be quiet, but as always, screaming and shouting weren’t avoidable. Of course, Harle and Kidd heard that as well.

“Oh? Ze children are already awake? Why iz zat?”, Harle asked with a puzzled look and stood up.

“Dunno.”, Kidd answered and smiled sheepishly. Harle smiled knowingly and both got dressed.

“Ya go ahead, I’ll follow in a minute.” Kidd said and Harle went downstairs, heading towards the kitchen. It was still dark and quiet, so Harle reached for the switch. Just the moment when the light turned on, the children began shouting happily, running towards the surprised Harle to give her a hug.

Harle happily embraced each one of them, and finally Trisha as well.

When Harle’s look fell on the cake, her heart almost stopped. She had never seen such a big and beautiful cake before.

“Voilá!”, the children exclaimed proudly. Harle was close to tears. Seeing all these children smiling proudly at her just made her unbelievably happy. She wanted to say something, when the door behind her opened.

Kidd stood in the doorframe and smiled gently. With her hands behind her back, she slowly walked towards Harle.

“Happy birthday to you...”, she started singing, nodding at the kids, which instantly joined her, “happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Harle, happy birthday to you!” The children sang well and Harle was almost overwhelmed by it all.

Standing directly in front of Harle, Kidd showed Harle her present she had hidden behind her back until now. It was exactly the same pendant Harle had looked at the day before.

Harle was speechless and just stared at Kidd, while Kidd gently placed the pendant around Harle’s neck. The colour of the sapphire was just the same as Kidd’s eyes, and it matched Harle’s just perfectly.

“Happy birthday”, she said softly and gave Harle a long kiss. The children applauded happily and Harle felt herself blush.

Finally, Harle broke the kiss and turned to the children.

“Merci beaucoup, everyone.”, she said, with a few tears of joy running down her cheeks.

“Now ta the cake, I’m hungry!”, Kidd shouted and Harle began to slice the cake.

She sliced it exactly into fifteen equal pieces.

Soon everyone had a piece of cake in his or her hand, looking at it greedily. Harle nodded and everyone began to eat. The children made all kinds of funny noises, showing they liked the taste of it.

“So, how does it feel, being an old hag of thirty years?”, Kidd asked playfully, poking her elbow into Harle’s side.

Harle only grunted in response, and the children giggled. “Be careful.”, she said, taking a bite from the cake.

It was a great day for all of them. The children had fun, playing all kinds of games with Harle and Kidd.

At noon, even Marle came to visit, bringing another big cake and flowers with her. Marle enjoyed these days, when she could be a simple woman again, even if only for a short time. Not that she disliked being a queen that much, she just liked being normal every once in a while.

Later that day, Dana came as well, bringing along her husband. Together, Harle, Kidd, Marle and Dana had a long talk to catch up on things. They also talked about how Porre and Guardia had become allies, about this orphanage and basically everything which had happened within the past years. They talked for a long time, because they could only meet like this on rare occasions. Dana was always busy. Still working at the Porre army, she travelled around the world, together with her husband. They only passed Truce once within a few months, and even then they didn’t have much time to spend there.

While the women were talking, Dana’s husband played with the kids, teaching them how to fight with a sword properly. The kids were eager to learn, especially the boys. They all grabbed their wooden swords and tried to imitate his moves, being proud to be taught by a real soldier.

The evening came soon, and everyone said goodbye. Dana promised to be back soon and left, and so did Marle.

The children went to bed as well, being tired because they had to stand up that early this morning.

Kidd and Harle went for a walk again. It was a warm and pleasant night, and the sky was full of stars. Walking hand in hand, Kidd and Harle went into the forest of Guardia. After all these years, Kidd knew this forest quite well, so she wasn’t afraid of getting lost anymore. She led Harle to a little clearing in no time.

It was completely silent and they both lay down in the grass to look at the sky.

“Are ya happy, Harle?”, Kidd asked, but giggled at the same time.

Harle only smiled in return, regarding Kidd’s face in the moonlight. It was beautiful as ever. They moved closer to kiss, enjoying this peaceful time.

When they broke the kiss, Kidd saw a shooting star cross the sky and pointed at it, smiling brightly.

“Look, make a wish!”, Kidd said while looking at the shooting star.

When no answer came from Harle, Kidd looked to her side, puzzled.

“Ya don’t wanna wish for somethin’?”, she asked softly, a hint of worry crossing her face.

“Non, moi doezn’t need to. Moi already haz everyt’ing moi wantz.”, Harle whispered, gazing at Kidd.

“If that’s the case, I won’t complain.”, Kidd answered and smiled gently.

Harle took her pendant into her right hand, regarding the reflection of the moon on it. With holding it high enough to regard it, she also saw the silver nametag on the back of the pendant. Harle moved it closer to her eyes, so she could read the engraving.

It read: “Pour mon Harle aimée.”

Harle began to cry softly. Even though she knew how much Kidd loved her, it always warmed her heart to hear it one more time. It was something she could never get enough of.

Seeing the tears reflected by the moonlight, Kidd moved closer and kissed them away.

“Merci beaucoup, mon amour.”, Harle whispered, smiling all over her face.

With her left hand, Kidd stroked Harle’s cheek softly. She felt Harle’s skin was a little cold, so she leaned in to warm her with a long, passionate kiss. Harle laid her arm around Kidd’s waist, snuggling up close to her, trying to gather Kidd’s warmth.

Eventually, they parted and looked up to the dark sky again.

“For another thirty years?”, Kidd asked, squeezing Harle’s hand softly.

“At leazt.”, Harle answered and smiled.


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