FF.net: Light in the Shadows: The Gentleman's Song
The Gentleman's Song
Wilson sighed as he finished up his work for the day. Things were coming together nicely. Though he still saw many possibilities for improvements, there was little he could do when his legs felt like they might buckle under him.
Despite that, he still found it in him to head towards the lake, something kept close to him. He had been surprised when Wickerbottom had presented it to him.
"Where did you even get this?"
"Wilson, I know about the shack."
"My house is not a shack! … But thank you."
Looking around to be sure no one could see, he took the item - a violin, out of its case as he got into position. He hummed a familiar tune before starting to play in accordance, feeling as if the night around him faded away.
There was nothing but him and the music.
I don't even know the name of this song yet I've been able to play it ever since I was young.
He played on, not noting someone behind a tree was watching him. They kept quiet, eyes wide in wonder as Wilson moved the bow with grace, swaying a didn't want to interrupt him but as fate would have it, a fallen twig gave away their position the minute they stepped on it.
"Shoot!" They cursed under their breath.
Wilson froze in place, his eyes narrowing. Swiftly, he kicked a small rock right against the tree.
"I know you're there!"
The person behind the tree flinched at the rock, sighing as they made themselves visible, revealing it was Willow.
"Yeesh, don't need to be so violent, Wildork."
Wilson's eyes widened, feeling heat come to his face. Now he felt rather silly for overreacting like that.
"I-I am so SO sorry. It-It wasn't intentional it was-I just-"
Willow shook her head before going over to him, touching his shoulder.
"I know, I know, instinct. We're used to monsters popping out of bushes or trees and let's face it, we're still not over it even when we're here."
He frowned, giving a nod. "That's exactly it. I still can't get the girls to even sleep in their own tent since the night still scares them."
"Yeah and I never go anywhere without a torch. I mean, I love fire but… I can never feel comfortable enough to sleep without it."
"I understand, Willow." Wilson's gaze softened. "It helps comfort you and helps you feel safe. I understand completely."
Willow nodded, before shaking her head.
"Enough about me though." She eyed the violin. "Since when do you play music? I thought you were all about science."
"There is science in music!" He insisted. "The study of sound, the vibrations caused by even our own vocal chords. All of it relates to it." He looked at the violin with fondness. "And I've loved it ever since I was young."
"Guess you have some good memories attached to that thing, don't you?"
"I do." Wilson sighed happily. "Playing with my mother, learning how to play it properly for the first time, memorizing a song I wanted to play for her, some others that are unclear. I may be fascinated with science but music was part of my up bringing."
"That sounds amazing. That song you were playing, what was it? I don't think I've heard it before… Em kind of. I've heard you hum it to the girls and even me but I've never heard anyone else but you hum the tune."
"Well… the song in question, while I know it in regards in how to play it, I don't remember the title. I just… I'm not sure why but anytime I play it or hum it I just feel calm."
"Maybe someone played it for you whenever you were tired or stressed to help you calm down?"
"Perhaps. It might've been my mother. She was always taking care of me. Never wanted me hurt or ill. Never liked seeing me sad." He frowned. "... Goodness, I haven't seen her in so long."
"Is she still around?"
"Last time I wrote a letter to her she was. I imagine she still is. Goodness, she might be worried about me since the last time I wrote her a letter it was quite a few months ago and that before I crossed paths with Maxwell."
"Well, if we ever find a way to go to Earth maybe you could find her and then bring her here or something."
"Maybe… I'd… really rather not bother her."
"Why not? You said she might be worried. Why wouldn't you visit her?"
"Willow… I…" Wilson looked away. There was pain in his eyes. "I'm nothing but a disgrace. She should be ashamed of me. I'm considered the runt of my family. The screw up. That's all I ever did. Why would she want to see a failure-"
"Now just a minute!" Willow snapped, turning his face so he was looking her in the eyes. "You, Wilson Percival higgsbury are NOT a screw up! You hear me!? Does a screw up build a fort like the one you did? Does a screw up build all the tools you did? Does a screw up go out of his way to help complete strangers and then take them in and help them successfully? Does a screw up trick a SHADOW KING? I don't know what kind of mother you have but if she always viewed you as a runt then screw her! You're much more than that!"
"N-No! It wasn't Mum!"
"Then who DID say that!?"
Wilson bit his lip.
"Our extended family. People I'd rather not ever see again for as long as I live. Mother always defended me against them but… Willow… There's a lot of places my mind went when I moved out of my mother's home. Not all of them good."
"I just… I just wanted to prove them wrong. So badly… Yet in the end I failed."
Willow shook her head.
"Wilson. You've fought monsters of every kind, you've built countless things, you took two little girls under your wing and have been doing your best to raise them, you dethroned a king, you're a prince and a leader. I don't think that's failure in any form. Sure, you might've fallen down in the past but Wilson that's the past. I know it's hard to let go but what matters is where you are now. And for your mother, since she was defending you and I'm assuming loved you with all her heart, I think she would be proud of you."
Wilson was quiet before a smile came to his face, a touched look in his eyes. "Willow… Thank you. That means a lot." He ran a hand through his hair. "Goodness, listen to me. Why do I sill even worry about that? … Sometimes my mind just goes places I suppose… and my mother was a strong person, She raised me basically by herself with help from my grandfather and grandmother."
"Sounds strong for that alone." Willow cupped a cheek in her hand. "Also, one more thing I'm adding to the list of accomplishments. You took a pyro in who was probably the most unstable person you would ever meet despite her threatening you at first."
Wilson chuckled, leaning into her hand.
"You know it was only the one time you threatened to burn my hair off, right?" He brought his hand over hers. "And Willow, to give my own compliment, you are far more than just a "pyro"."
"I suppose." She smiled.
"No suppose. You're the light to my darkness… Em sorry…" He blushed. "I mean, You've had my back this entire time."
Willow shook her head, nuzzling him gently, blushing a bit herself.
"Wilson, if you get the chance, see your mother. I don't know what it's like to have parents but I know if I did, I would want to treasure every moment I had with them."
"I promise I will and I'll bring her to meet you too."
"That would be fun." Willow smiled. "But for now…" She eyed his violin. "Would you care to treat me with some music?"
WIlson grinned, giving a bow before getting into position.
"I would be honored, M'lady. Any requests?"
"Hm… I want to hear that song you were playing earlier. The nameless one."
"Very well." He closed his eyes, humming a bit as he started to play.
Wilson and Willow swayed to the music, the world around them fading away. Wilson opened his eyes, gazing at Willow, smiling gently. Willow smiled back, sighing happily.
It was just the two of them and the music.
And I'm lucky to have her.