The morning sun rose high over the mountain, shining down on the Bronzo Estate as the birds chirped, announcing the arrival of the new day. Inside the estate, servents and maids were busy cleaning up and making the house shine for when their Bronzo Family awoke from their sleep.
The first to wake up was Yuri as she sat up in her new bed and stretched, feeling well rested after the day she had yesterday. After arriving in the estate, Yuri had been given a lot of answers to the questions she wanted to know about her heritage, even with some tears, she felt at peace being part of the family.
Getting off the bed, she heard the sounds of maid's entering the room as they all stood there, "Good morning Mistress Yuri" They all said making Yuri a bit shocked.
"What... what's all this?" She asked with confusion in her voice.
"I can explain this" A voice said as Yuri looked over to see her grandmother already dressed in her formal attire.
"Good morning grandmother, explain what?" She asked looking at the maid's. "Explain the morning routine," replied Yana with a soft smile,"When the family is all together like this we typically have breakfast together in the mornings. It's a very rare occasion we're all home at one time, and since you're here it makes it all the more special. Besides, there are still some relatives you haven't met. Now come, get dressed, breakfast starts at ten o' clock."
Yana then got to work and helped the maids dress Yuri for the meal.
"Uh grandmother, not that I don't appreciate it, but I am more than capable of getting dressed myself" Yuri said as she had finished her shower and was now getting dressed by some of the maid's as they were looking through her clothing.
"Oh these will simply not do Head-Mistress" One of the maid's said as she threw Yuri's normal clothes onto the bed. Yuri looked a bit offended,"And why is that?" she asked. "Don't mind her dear, she means no harm. Believe it or not, I was once just a commoner, and because the Bronzo Family isn't as old as those other, snobby nobles makes them look down on us, so we try to seem as classy as possible during things like family meals to make up for it," replied Yana as she sorted through her granddaughter's bag as well.
"I understand, though this kind of treatment isn't something I'm used to" Yuri said as one of the maid's measured her endowment and called to one of the other maids to bring in the dress with the larger chest, making Yuri blush a bit.
After some time, the maid's all backed away as Yuri looked at herself in the mirror, her entire appearance went from being any normal mage to an elegant princess, showing some of her features, which made her blush a bit.
"Grandmother, not to sound ungrateful, but is all of this really needed for a simple breakfast?" She asked looking at her dress.
"Well at least for a family breakfast. We have to show all those other snobs we're just as fancy as they are, or at least make them think we are," she said with a chuckle. "Don't wory, this doesn't happen often so you can usually sleep in, okay? Now come, it's already ten-fifteen, Duney'll be annoyed by the time we get up to the dining floor." Yana led her granddaugher out of the room, and they were taken up to the dining room by Coma.
After a while of walking in heels, the maid's opened the door to find many people around the dining hall, all wearing very elegant clothing as well as expensive jewlery. All this for breakfast, I wonder how mom managed to put up with this Yuri thought in her head as she walked with Yana to where her cousin's were.
"Well, look who finally got changed" Byakko said with a smile as he was dressed in a sharp tux with his hair in a ponytail along with a glove over his prostetic arm.
"Sorry, if I had known that there was going to be a ball for breakfast, I would've woken up sooner" Yuri replied with a smile on her face.
"You look so pretty," said Bella. She was dressed in a light blue gown and had a elegant tiara on her head. Sitting next to her was a tall man in a pitch-black tux, with shoulder-length, black hair slicked back and in a ponytail. Duney was sitting next to the head of the table, and sitting another seat down, next to him, was an extremely tanned young man with blue hair, and a warm smile on his face. "Okay everyone, it's time to begin," announced Yana.
Sitting down at one of the empty seats, Yuri's eyes began to wonder around where she was sitting, in the same room as she was were some of the most elegent and famous people known in Fiore. To her surprise, some of them were looking at Yuri as if they had a sense of deja vu, which stopped when Yana took her spot at the end of the table and began to speak.
"Everyone, this is Yuri, Yuri Bronzo. Turns out she's my granddaughter. You all know about Brina, this is her daughter, and I want you all to treat her like she's been here all her life, got that?" Yana said the last part very sternly. She then turned to face Yuri. "Yuri, this is your cousin, Haretzu Gyuki," she said, pointing to the man with the slicked-back hair, who smiled warmly at her upon being introduced,"We just recently learned of his relation to us as well," added Yana.
"And this young man is Gero Nakagi," she said, pointing to the dark-skinned man next to Duney. "Nice to meet you," said Gero kindly. "He's not related but he might as well still be family," said Yana,"Now, let's eat!" The wholed table cheered, which kind of surprised Yuri as the maids began to pass out plates to every individual at the table.
"I must say, this is something else" Yuri said as a plate of exotic food was placed in front of her, making Yuri drool a bit from smelling.
"Well you don't want it to get cold do you?" A voice said as Yuri turned to her side to find Haretzu sitting next to her with a soft smile on his face. She nodded and began to dig into her meal, overhearing some conversations around the table. "Delicous! Who made this?" Yuri said with a joyful expression as she continued to dig into her meal.
"Well along with the team of chefs here, Coma pitched in," continued Haretzu. He looked over at Duney, who looked like he was a bit scared to eat it now, upon hearing Coma made it. "What's the deal between those two anyway?" Yuri asked Haretzu. "I don't know much," said Haretzu,"But I think Coma has thing for Duney, but hides it behind hostility."
"I see" Yuri said, in her mind she was wondering what would have happened to the two of them to get them in this situation, an answer she would have to get later as the servers came with juice tray's, placing one in front of each person to drink from.
"So tell me about yourself Haretzu" Yuri asked as she took a sip and immediatly fell in love with the drink. "Well, I guess I should start with the fact that I grew up as an orphan in the woods," began Haretzu. Yuri raised an eyebrow, intrigued by her cousin,"Go on," she said. Haretzu took a sip of his drink and continued, "I was eventually found by a woman named Minka Hubasa. She trained me to be a mage for about a year, then, when she thought I could take care of myself, she enlisted me in the Dragon Scale Guild, that's the last I saw of her." He paused for a second and took another sip.
"Sounds familiar, so in a way we both found ourselves coming to this family, blood or not, we're family and I'm starting to care for every one of them" Yuri said with a blush as she finished her juice, causing one of the maids to come near here and pour some more into it. "Though to be honest, I think the maid and the helpers are a bit much for me, it'll just be something I have to get used to" She said chuckiling a bit.
"Trust me, you'll get used to it soon enough, but it is quite a change," said Haretzu as he took a small bite of some kind of delicous looking food. The meal went on and Yuri met several other people, all of whom seemed very nice thankfully. When it was over, Yana directed all the people to go to their respective rooms and change into something more casual.
"Oh man, early in the morning and already my feet are killing me" Yuri told her grandmother as the two walked back to her room. Opening the door as they saw Bella waiting on her bed, "Bella, what are you doing in my room?" She asked kicking off her heels as she went to the closet to get changed out of her formal dressing and into something more relaxing.
Bella jump up from the bed, and Yuri noticed a certain fire in her eyes that she hadn't seen before. "I've come to a realization," said Bella with a grin. "Oh no," muttered Yana under her breath. "You're Brina's daughter, and from the story Grandma told us yesterday, your dad sounds strong too, so you must be strong, right?" said Bella.
Yuri immediatly realized where this was leading, she wasn't a stranger to fighting, her parents were both mages when they were still around, so naturally she had to learn how to fight and use magic. Even when she became a member of the family, she knew at some point she would have to earn her keep around here, but she didn't expect it to happen on her second day.
"I'm very strong, mom and dad wanted me to have the strength to make sure I could handle myself in case anything ever happened to me" Yuri said with confidence as Yana saw the same smile that remind her a lot of Brina.
"Well you're no the only one with strong parents, so how about we just show eachother how good we are, you up for?" replied Bella. She was getting excited. Bella didn't usually show her competitive side often, but battling with Yuri was to tempting to pass up. Bella walked over to the balcony doors and opened them,"Follow me then," she said, leaping off the balcony and towards the back lake.
Yuri felt a bit of excitement as she quickly ran after her, jumping from the balcony in her training gear she often wore when she was training with her mother. It was seen to be skin tight, revealing her muscles and her large endowment as well.
"Ready when you are cousin" She said getting into position. "Right!" said Bella enthusiastically. A purple magic circle appeared under Bella's feet, and from her back sprouted two gigantic, black wings. He hands and feet began to morph into murderous talons. "A partial Take Over huh?" said Yuri. When her transformation was done Bella charged with remarkable speed at her cousin, aiming her claws with deadly percision.
Yuri ducked down, just missing the claws as she passed by her, but before she could make a return trip, Yuri used Lash Magic and aimed her magical whip at the wings of Bella, hoping to tie them up. The whips hit their mark and Bella's wings were caught, but she quickly turns around, throwing her cousin into the air. The whips loosened and Bella launched herself into the air, talons poised. She was grinning from ear to ear, enjoying the fight immensly.
Feeling the sudden rush of the wind, Yuri felt herself losing her grip on the energy lash as she saw Bella aiming right at her. Smiling, she placed her hands together, expanding them into a redish shield around her, "Magma God Sphere!!" She said as the talon pierced it, but started to slowly burn Bella's arm. "Owie! Yuri, that hurted," said Bella in a very childish voice that made Yuri chuckle. Bella then stood up again, back to her battle mode, and completed her Take Over into a large bird-man creature. "This is my Take Over: Garuda," she said braggingly.
She flew up into the air again and then, all of a sudden, shot down at Yuri at extreme speed, spinning like a topedo.
Yuri smiled, focusing her magic back into her whips, this time she waited until the perfect moment as Bella continued to dive towards her. Right before she could, Yuri slammed down one of her whips, creating a powerful shock wave that sent both her and Bella across the field. Both Bronzos eventually skidded into the back lake, but Yuri stood up first, and Bella just floated in the lake for a minute before splashing up. "Wow," she said "You might be even stronger than Duney. You're definately stronger than me."
"Maybe, dad did teach me his strongest magic and mom did teach me that, though I still have trouble holding back from time to time" She said helping her cousin out of the water and smiling. "Okay, okay," said Yana as she walked up behind her two granddaughters,"You've had your fun, now it's time for Yuri to learn a little more about her heritage. Are you ready?" Yuri nodded with a bit of surprise and followed her grandmother toward the woods, with Bella close behind.
Yana walked silently into the tree-line, not telling her grandchildren where they were going. She eventually came to a gigantic tree, with thin beams of light cascading through the canopy, and a small structure of rocks built at the base. "This was your grandfather's favorite place," said Yana, finally turning around,"I figure it will be the best spot to tell you more about him."
Yuri could feel the life around the area, something about the place made it seem more safe than any other place in the estate, especially to the animals as a fox came out of the hole with a few of it's kits. They all looked at Yuri and went running as the mother fox went to Yana's side, watching the kits trying to play with Yuri's legs. "Aw, you guys are so cute" She said taking one of them and holding it close to her chest, "I can see why grandfather loved this spot".
"Yes," said Yana,"He was a very gentle man. People and animals alike seem to gravitate to him, even in death. Now let's see, where should I start?" Yana looked up through the canopy of the tree and began to remember.
Flashback to Sixty Years Prior...
An eighteen year old Ered Bronzo, along with his newly-wed Yana walked into their guild. It was unusually quiet for some reason, which made both a bit uneasy. Then they saw their guild master, Master Ban, come out of the back room, looking very tired and sickly. "Master, are you okay?" said Ered as he and Yana walked over to their elderly friend.
"Oh Ered, I am afraid I have some unfortunate news, after some disturbing news, I am afraid that today will be the last day of our guild" Ban said as he grabbed the half-empty sake bottle and slammed it in front of him as he sat down on one of the tables.
"But Master, why so suddenly?" asked Yana, who felt tears coming. The young couple sat down across the table from their master, beginning to understand why their guild was so empty. Ban coughed violently and answered.
"My time is nearing...." He said drinking from the bottle, "After years and years, I'm reaching the end of my journey among the living, it will be time for me to ascend to the next life" Ban replied through the coughs as he took another drink of sake from the bottle. "I don't wish for anyone else but you two to know this, which is why I am disbanding the guild, so that everyone may be free to choose their next paths in life".
Hearing this, Yana broke down and fell into the arms of her husband, crying for their master. Ered shed a few tears as well before pulling himself together briefly to ask his master a question. "How long do you have Master? I mean, we've only been gone for four days. You seemed fine at our wedding four days ago."
Ban looked out the window, seeing the sun set down on the horizon, "A few hours at most, I had already told everyone to leave the guild, you two will be the last people I see on my dying day" Ban said taking in a deep breath as he finished the sake bottle and grabbed a glass of water. "All in all, despite everything that happened to me, I enjoyed living, I enjoyed being a mage, but most of all, I enjoyed seeing you two find your happiness" he said with a smile on his face.
Yana got up and hugged her master for one last time. Ered and Yana both were in tears now, while their master just stayed as calm as ever, hugging Yana back as if it was just another day. "But Master," started Yana,"Isn't there anything we can do? You've helped us so much, can't we help you?"
"I'm sorry my child, but even magic can't fix what time has done to this body, nature must take it's course and it is time for me to ascend. My dear young ones, this may be an ending for me, but it is a beginning for you two, I know that you two will have a greater family and a better place to call home. Don't ever forget the lessons I taught you, always look for each other, and never forget the memories that brought you two together with us" Ban said with a smile as tears came down his face, making him stand up and walk away from them, closing the door behind them as the sun set enveloping the guild in darkness as the only sounds that could be heard were the sounds of crying from both Yana and Ered.
Back to the Present...
"As Master predicted, he died within the next few hours, and our guild died with him. The next day, Ered and I set out on our own path. We were broke at the time, but we managed to get by long enough to make it to Ered's family, who we stayed with for the next few years," concluded Yana.
"Wow, it must have been deveastating, but wait I'm confused about something grandmother, how did you two come to have the name Bronzo?" Yuri wondered as she drank from a canteen that Yana provided for her in case she got thirsty.
"That was Ered's family's name. Without them the Bronzo Family would've never been founded, so to repay them, we named it after them."
Flashback to Fifty-Six Years Prior...
Yana sat out on the balcony of the giant, cliff-side tree that she, Ered, and his entire family now called home. Her belly was slightly swelled and round from being three months pregnant. Ered came into their room, carrying some freshly sown baby clothes from his mother. Yana sighed loudly, seeming unsatisfied, which caught Ered's attention.
"Is something wrong my darling?" Ered asked walking over towards her, wrapping his arms around her waist and slowly carressing her belly as he placed his head on one of her shoulders. "Is everything alright? Have the maid's been giving you trouble?".
"No, the maids are lovely like always, it's just," she faltered, "It's just, we're going to have a child soon enough. And your family is wonderful, but, I always pictured us living in a bit more," she paused to find the right word, "Stable place, big enough that our children and us wouldn't be crammed into one room." Her lip started quivering. The mood swings had started.
Ered could feel his wife's frustration as he kissed her cheek, gently carressing her belly as he could feel the baby's warm against his hand. "I know darling, it hasn't been easy believe me, I've been taking mission after mission to earn enough jewels for us to find our own home" Ered said with a smile as he could feel his baby kicking against his hand.
Yana turned arounded, now looking annoyed,"Well work harder! It's not like I can go on jobs like this! I'm FAT!" Ered stepped back a little in recoil, but remained calm and hugged his wife. "I'm sorry" she said, now sad again. "You're the best husband ever." Then she hugged him tighter as she cryed loudly into his shirt. So this was pregnancy?
"It will be alright, I know this isn't easy for you, but when our child is born, all the pain and changes will be well worth it in the end" Ered said sincerly as he heard a knock from the door, looking back to see his mother coming in with another batch of clothing.
"This is the last of it, I hope it will be enough" She said with a smile as she walked over to Yana, placing her hand on her belly to feel the baby. "How has the baby been treating you today?"
"It's fine I supose," said Yana, who was now calm enough to talk clearly,"Do I really have to wait six more months?" she whined. Yana rubbed her belly and gave it a cynical look, as if she was fed up with her unborn child's slow growth-rate, which made Ered and his mother chuckle softly.
"Believe me, it will be well worth the wait, the first time you hold your precious baby in your arms, all the pain and work will have been well worth it, I should know" She said looking over to Ered as he blushed a bit and turned his head to try and not show it, making both of the woman laugh at his expression.
The laughter was finally interrupted when Yana started smelling a bitter scent in the air: smoke. Her confused expression made Ered and his mother both stop laughing and they soon noticed the smell of smoke as well. Yana waddled out the door and looked down the hollowed out tree trunk to see a the bottom floor blazing. One by one people began coming out of their rooms to find the same thing, and this caused a bit of panic.
"What the hell?! The place is on fire!!" Ered said as he quickly placed on his gear to see what was going on, "Mother, please take Yana to the secret exit out of the house please, I must go deal with this immediately" He said giving a kiss to Yana on the lips before running down the stairs.
"Come on, we must hurry," said Mrs. Bronzo to Yana. She led her pregnant daughter-in-law down a different set of stairs, followed by other woman and children trying to escape the fire while their husbands investigated. Yana doubled over in a coughing fit from the smoke for a moment, so Mrs. Bronzo, along with another woman helped her down the remainder of the stairs and out into the back yard. Yana and Mrs. Bronzo turned around in horror to see the tree they called home quickly burn more and more.
Ered continued to stay around the burning building, trying to make sure everyone in the family was safe and sound, after seeing that all of the rooms were empty, Ered quickly ran, trying to find some place to break open to escape from the inferno, but after finding a window, he quickly looked to find someone in a cloak. He turned to try and attack, but was knocked back and sent flying by some form of magic as he fell right down to where Yana and his mother were.
"Ered!" said Yana as she and her mother-in-law ran towards him. He was out cold, but breathing thankfully. Yana looked up to see the cloaked man jumping out the window Ered had come crashing out of, with three or four men in pursuit. "Spirit Volley!" A dozen bullets of darkness fired from Yana's hand, hitting the cloaked man, and allowing his pursuers to catch up to him.
Ered quickly regained consiousness as he looked over to find that the cloaked man had been captured, making him stand up and look at Yana, hugging her. "Are you and the baby okay?" He asked with worry in his voice.
"We're alright. And as far as I know so is everyone else too. Though I wish I could say the same about our home," Yana said sollemnly, looking at their charred tree-house. Seeing the glum looks on her husband and mother-in-law's face made her quickly change the subject,"If you're okay, why don't you go and see who did this with the others. He's up there." She pointed up to the cliff where she saw the men gathered around the, now tied up, figure.
Giving a deep kiss to Yana, Ered walked over to the man, with a powerful intimidation shown as he made the others move away. "You have made the biggest mistake of your life, I will never forgive anyone who tried to hurt my family!" He growled and grabbed the hood, forcing it down as he looked at the man's face, but was shocked to see that it was his old guildmate.
"M..Mario....?" "So you figured it out Bronzo," said Mario, with a crazed look in his eyes,"I always hated you and that wife of your's. Always working half as hard and getting twice of Ban's praise. But now that the old man's dead there was nothing stopping me from getting a little revenge." He laughed like a mad man, but Ered stood silently, trying to supress his anger as best he could.
"That is not true!" Ered quickly grabbed Mario by the collar and brought him face to face, "The master cared for all of us Mario, we were all family to him, including you!"
"Of coarse you'd say that! You were always his favorite! But I worked harder than anyone and did he ever notice? No!" "Mario?" said Yana, who'd walked over to see who had destroyed her home for herself. Mario's look of distaste when he saw her quickly vanished when he noticed her pregnant belly. "You're... with child?" he said in disbelief.
"Yes, my child Mario, the one you would've killed with that stupid fire!!" Ered throws Mario to the ground glaring at him, "Do you think the master would want you to harm life? That he would want you to take revenge?!" Ered yelled as tears began to drop down his face. "He always cared about us Mario, every single one of us, and you spit on his memory by trying to kill my family?!"
Mario looked astounded by what he'd done,"I-I nearly killed an unborn child?" tears started rolling down his face. Yana walked up to him, signalling her husband to stand back,"Mario," she began, speaking with as much authority and power as she could muster,"What you've done today is unforgivable! As punishment, you will be turned into the Magic Council for dozens of acounts of purposely endangering lives." Mario cowered in fear of the woman, fearing he could easily be killed by her if she chose to do so.
All Mario could do is nod in response as he let more tears drop to the ground, Ered signaled his family to take him away, leaving him and a crying Yana alone as he walked up to her and hugged her tightly, "I'm so relieved that your safe".
"But, where are we going to live now, the baby will be here in six months, that's hardly enough time to find a home, buy all new furniture, get more baby clothes, and replace everything else your family's lost," she said weeping louder. Family members started gathering around, panicing and asking questions about where they were going to live, when Ered's mother stood up and yelled,"Quiet!"
"Is this how we will solve our problem?! By asking questions and panicking?! We are the Bronzo Family, we have been through thick and thin with each other, something like this must not be allowed to break us! For while we may not have physical possessions, we have each other, family to stand by when things seem at their lowest! I will not give in and neither should you!!!" She proclaimed as everyone in the family yelled with cheer and began to move to start putting out the fire.
"You two" Ered's mother looked over to Yana and Ered, "It may take us time, but it should not take you anytime to find a new home, I have one gift for you" She said as one of the members brought over a chest, which she opened and revealed the jewels inside of it.
Ered and Yana were astonished by the contents of the chest. Rubies, Sapphires, Emeralds, Pearls, there was enough in here to buy them an entire mansion. Yana and Ered hugged Mrs. Bronzo. "How did you get these?" asked Yana. "I've been saving up for many years in the event something like this happened," said Mrs. Bronzo happilly.
"Mother, we can't take this, it's too much" Ered said as Yana hit him in the gut due to the hormones, which caused him to fall over a bit, and cough from the air knocked out of him. "Don't listen to him, he's still woozy from getting knocked to the ground, we'd be happy to take this." said Yana with a greedy smile on her face. Mrs. Bronzo smiled," I'm glad you appreciate it dear. Do you have any idea where you want to build your home?"
"Well, there is one spot that I've had my eyes on for sometime now" He said groaning as he leaned on his wife for support, making both of the woman laugh. Six months passed as the money was used to fund a new home for the two of them inside one of the nearby natural cave formations, customizing it to his and Yana's likes, until it was finally completed, which was just in time as the day after completion, their first child was born.
End of Second Flashback...
"And for years our lives were perfect," said Yana,"We had Brina and Uso a few years later, the family propurred, everything went fine. Until..." Yana paused for a moment to gather up the courage to continue,"Until Ered fell ill."
"What was the cause of the sickness?" Yuri wondered thinking maybe it had a connection to what her mother and father caught before they died. "It was a forensic virus that was caused by over-use of magic. It's hereditary reccesive, so it it was very unlikely for any of our children to get it, but it may have passed to Brina. I'm sorry dear." Yana paused again to let that sink in with Yuri.
Letting the entire statement sink in, some tears found their way into her face but she wiped them off and smiled at her, "I'm okay grandmother, I'm just glad that she isn't in any pain anymore" Yuri said as she petted the foxes that were on here lap as the mother went to lick them and make sure they were safe, "Was grandfather in any pain?"
The fox mother strolled over to Yana and laid down at her feet calmly."I imagine he was, but he was the type of person who carried a burden alone, so he would never say he was. Even in his final hours he didn't conplain at all, which says a lot about him in my eyes."
Flashback to 15 years Prior...
The Bronzo House, one of the most energetic houses all of Fiore, was now empty with silence as nothing could be heard from inside, not even the sounds of dishes or laughter could be heard as many of the maids were all in their rooms, quiet and unmoving.
In one of the medical rooms, Ered Bronzo could be seen on one of the beds, breathing softly as the family doctor closed his bag and began to walk out, meeting Yana, Uso, and Shira looked over to the doctor, who took in a deep breath and shook his head then walked away.
Shira and Uso felt like they were trying to swallow bullets trying to hold back tears, but their mother gave no sign of any emotion at all. They all walked over to the bed where their beloved husband and father lay, barely alive, but awake and in good spirits, despite his health. "How do you feel?" Yana said bluntly to her husband, who kept a sunny smile on his face.
Ered looked over and smiled at his wife and children, though he had a look of sadness on his face as he saw that one of his children were missing, but decided to keep it quiet. "I assume the doctor told you?" Yana fell silent. "It's not fair!" said Shira, with tears starting to flow, "People keep saying that magic's come so far but we can't even heal you from some stupid disease." Uso hugged his sister, as he bagan to cry as well.
"Ered," began Yana, "You've lasted this long. Don't you think your giving up a little early?" Yana may have sounded harsh, but even in the saddest of sitiuations, leaders must remain dignified.
"Oh dear, believe me, I've pushed myself further and futher to beat this, try to at least live long enough to see the birth of my grandchildren grow up into young adults, but like our master told us, time can take the fight out of anything it sinks it's claws into" Ered replied as he coughed a bit, sitting up to look at his family.
Shira and Uso hugged their father tightly, crying loudly over his shoulders. When they drew back, Yana stepped forward and kissed her husband, then she sat down on a stool next to his bed, holding his hand gently, but still not shedding a tear. Uso and Shira then said their goodbyes to their father, and walked out of the room, not being able to hold themselves together any longer, leaving Yana and her husband alone.
"Oh my dear, I know things haven't been good to us, I know that you still feel the pain of Brina leaving us, but it will pass just like this. Even now as the time dawns on me, you're still as beautiful as the day we met" He said feeling the tears welling up in his eyes.
Yana smiled weakly and squeezed her husbands hand, "And you're as dashing as ever as well," said Yana. The two sat together silently for more than an hour, until finally Yana felt her husband's grasp falter, and his hand fall away from her own. The doctor came in soon after and told her to go be with her family, so she did. The service they had for him was beautiful, but even as Ered was placed in the ground, Yana didn't shed a tear.
Five years passed and Yana lost the lives of both her children to Oracion Seis. She managed to defeat Master Zero in a fit of rage, but even after her children were buried, she didn't shed but a single tear, which she hid from everyone else around her. But the next month of that year, while going thorugh some of her husband's old stuff, she found a letter he wrote to her before he died. It read...
"My dear family, if your reading this it looks like I've finally kicked the bucket. Of coarse knowing Yana it probably took you years to find this didn't it? I want you all to know that in this world there are people who don't hold great power, good and bad. The good we must protect with our dying breath and the bad we must always be wary of because bad things always spread and become stronger. That's why we created the Bronzo Family isn't it Dear? I'm saying this because I want the younger generation to learn from our mistakes. And most of all, live with spirit in their hearts and vigor in their souls. I love you all. Sincerely, Ered Bronzo."
And upon reading this, all the built up tears of so many deaths in her life came rushing out. Shedding tears for all the mistakes she'd made and all the lives she'd let parish. The strong, collected, proffessional matriarch of the Bronzo Family broke down crying.
End of Final Flashback...
After the story was finished, there was only silence in the air as the kits were now resting in the comfort of Yuri's lap with the mother lying down and sleeping right next to Yana. "Wow..." was all that she could say at that point as she rubbed the head of the kits.
"Indeed," replied Yana as a few more tears escaped. "That letter is what changed my whole life. Changed it for the better I supose." She wiped her eyes and petted the fox mother at her feet.
Picking up one of the kits gently, she rocked it in her hands like a baby, taking in everything that Yana had told her, in her mind it was sad, but she knew that her mother must've felt even worse not being able to be there at her grandfather's side before his passing.
"Well, in a way, he still lives on through the teachings and through the stories you told me" Yuri said with a smile as tears of joy fell down her face. "He still lives within his family"
"I agree," said Yana, "Yuri, I don't believe I've ever met someone who reminds me more of him then you actually." Yana said with a smile. "You both have that same smiling disposition. It's rather funny actually."
Yuri blushed as the kits began to whine as the mother fox went over to wake them up, making them walk back into their den, all but one fox as he was still with Yuri. "Come on little one, time to go home" She said moving the kit to it's mother as she grabbed him and went back.
Yana chuckled at the little creatures as they went back into their den. She stood up from the rock she'd been sitting on and looked at her granddaughter.
"I've learned much today grandmother about my grandfather" Yuri said with a kind smile as she stood up, "I have a lot to live up too".
"Don't worry dear," said Yana,"You've gotten this far and you've turned out fine. In my eyes you already have." And with that, the two walked down the path back to their home.