Lone was immediately dumbstruck by Sophie's confession. He knew she felt something for him, but love? He had so many questions to ask her, but first, he had to answer her feelings.
That was when he realised how he felt about her himself. They had spent so much time together, and he had apparently seen her eyeing his body during his training over the course of the past year which he only thought to be natural. He too would look at a beautiful woman if he saw one when he was living on Earth, but looking at someone and having feelings for them were two very different things. Lone then took a moment to think about how she had acted to him despite his naturally rude self.
'Her life was so terrible, yet she remains so full of hope, of honesty, of beauty and of perfection. She even treats someone like me with genuine respect... just... just how do I feel about her?' Lone thought before he once again looked at her face filled with hope and fear. Sophie seemed to be anxious about his response. Lone then realised exactly where his little travelling companion stood in his heart.
He stood up and slowly approached the girl which startled her. She was worried he would reject and abandon her, but she had the one thing she needed to push back those feelings. The only thing she ever had in her times of misfortune. The one thing she needed to draw on the courage to tell him how she felt. She had hope.
He gently reached out his hand to wipe her tears away to reveal her flawless, beautiful and clearly worried face. Then he smiled and slowly kissed her forehead before pulling her in for a light hug.
"I accept you," Lone gently whispered into her ear. Sophie immediately felt a weight remove itself from her heart and her lips curled up into a smile full of glee. She was happy that her feelings had been accepted.
Sophie then immediately started crying again but not in sadness, no, she cried because she was happier in this one moment than she had felt her entire 1000 year long life collectively. She wrapped her arms around Lone tightly, as if this moment was only fleeting and would soon disappear in the blink of an eye if she didn't grab it, if she didn't seize it, didn't cherish it.
She wanted to cherish it, to cherish Lone, to cherish the both of them for eternity.
"But I need time. I feel strongly for you Sophie, more strongly than I have ever felt for anything and I'm ashamed to say that I only realised these feelings just now. You are the first person I've ever felt this way towards. You're the only person I actually want to give my time and attention to; you make me want to change. I want to be better, stronger, more accepting. I-I don't want to push people away anymore..." Lone said as he started to cry into Sophie's shoulder silently. The pressure from his previous life and all of the changes of this new one had all collected and finally boiled over causing Lone to lose control of his emotions.
"Lone..." Sophie gently said as she tried not to reveal her shock. She had seen Lone being upset before, even emotional at times over the past fifteen months, but cry? She had never seen this side of him before.
"You belong in my heart Sophie, both literally and emotionally but I need time. Time to change. We can become slightly more intimate but no more. Not until I feel ready. If that's okay with you," Lone whispered in her ear. This would be his first relationship, and he had no desire to rush it considering the two were stuck together for eternity due to Sophie being sealed and Lone's near-infinite lifespan due to his cell regeneration.
"That's fine... it's okay... just... thank you for accepting me," Sophie replied while she quietly sobbed in joy. Lone then picked her up while they were still hugging. He then gently sat her on his lap as he sat on the side of her bed.
"No. Thank you for accepting me. Despite my many flaws, really, thank you, Sophie," Lone said as he started resting his forehead on hers.
"Yo-You may have flaws, but I have just as many... we really are a good match aren't we?" Sophie asked in a happy tone as she moved her arms up his back to rest around his neck.
"Haha, I guess we are, aren't we? I haven't felt this happy in a long while," Lone lightly laughed as he rubbed her forehead with his.
"A-As a reward... for making you h-happy can I please h-have a... a k-kiss?" Sophie asked, hoping that much was okay. She had never experienced anything with another man beyond hugs with her father and being tortured by the Templars, so she was obviously rather nervous.
"Hmm..." Lone sat in thought for a moment which worried Sophie, making her think she had ruined the moment in her haste for progress and her desire for more intimacy.
'I suppose it would be okay to go with the flow, right? I'm still not sure why she feels so strongly for me. As far as I know, it could be purely a suspension bridge effect since I'm the only person she really knows. Yup, let's just go with the flow for now,' Lone thought. He himself had never had a relationship before so he felt that even his feelings could be an effect of the suspension bridge, so he assumed it was wise to just go along with the flow for now. At least until he figured things out between Sophie and himself a bit more.
Before Sophie could do anything like apologising to Lone for ruining the mood which she had thought she had done, Sophie felt something soft and amazing touching against her lips. She blanked out from the bliss of the moment but just as soon as the feeling arrived, it left. Lone then placed his head on her shoulder.
"That was my first so look after it for me, okay? I only gave it to you because you're special to me. Very special," Lone said in obvious embarrassment. His confidence clearly didn't apply to romantic matters.
"First? It was my first too... cherish it please... I'll cherish yours forever," Sophie sweetly said as she buried her head in Lone's shoulder and closed her eyes before she tried to remember the short but blissful moment.
"I will," Lone mumbled.
"I love you, Sophie, you've changed me, thank you, really, thank you," Lone said as he closed his eyes too. The two sat there in the comfort of the only other person that existed in their worlds. They looked content. So content in just being in each other's embrace that even if time stopped, or the planet died, nothing would disturb this moment for them. Nothing but their own consent. They truly were a fitting couple. It was almost as if fate had preordained their pairing.
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- The Scottish Slothy Sloth
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