Sun Forged Oath

The Scars We Bear

Vanguard discusses old wounds with Okami

While off on their sidequest, the Celestial pair sat by the fire one night, quietly amusing themselves by reviewing scars. Vanguard responded to Okami’s tease about the number of them by dryly pointed out that she'd taken the Second Breath well into an active and dangerous military career. 

“I can't believe these are only six months old. They look older than some of your others,” the Lunar commented, lightly touching the three punctures left by the war ghosts the Calibration before. 

“Jade’s skill, is why. He’s arrogant for a reason, you know. And he was still just a mortal then.” Vanguard smiled slightly.  

“These look like they could have easily killed you.”

“I told you before how poorly that night nearly went.” 

“I remember. It's just another thing to see and touch it. Hmm. These ones, this set along your right arm, they're odd.”

“Behemoth claws. I was raked pulling a child out from right under its grasp. That was a glancing hit – more direct and I probably would have lost the arm if not my life. But sometimes we're lucky.”

“And this one here?” Okami ran his fingers along the long scar that crossed the tattoo on her outer thigh. Despite looking like it should have damaged it badly, the ink was unmarred and the image clear.  

“A raksha's blade. Got him, though,” She grinned savagely, but the expression faded as Okami then ran his fingers along the tattoo itself, examining it.

“That…” she trailed off, the words not coming to her. 

“Something to do with your husband.” 

“Is it that obvious?”

“You change a little when he comes up.” The Lunar says quietly, still tracing with his fingertips. Noticing how tense she was already becoming, Okami carefully kept his eyes on the tattoo as he spoke rather than making eye contact. “How long were you together?”

“Married for nine years. But really, ever since we were children, there wasn't anyone else. And then… well, you know,” Vanguard shrugged. 

“I don’t really. You never told me exactly what happened. He was a fellow soldier?”

“A priest. One day I was out on patrol, and another Scout group needed help with some dead outside the city. He volunteered. He… he used to say… he wished he could be brave like me.” Her voice turns bitter. “A behemoth ambushed the group, and he was gone. I brought him… his body… back. I couldn’t bear the thought of him being left out there. And then after that, I just kept going. For a couple years, I took care of my people and did my job and that was all. It took awhile, Summer was the one who got me to start being more of a… a person again, I suppose.”  

She pauses, eyeing him, and then adds, “Does it bother you, to hear about all that?” 

“No,” he said simply, finally lifting his gaze to meet hers. He pulled her into a comfortable and somewhat protective embrace. “Tell me more about Hakura…”

 

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