Willow sat down on her and Tara's bad with a sigh as she looked around the room. If she'd heard right Logos had left a message asking for them to talk to Leblanc. Laying back she closed her eyes and heard the door open, soon she felt Tara gently lay her head on her shoulder before she drifted off into a restless sleep.
An hour later Buffy woke the girls up, telling them they were at the Guadosalam entrance. Before they could get to the entrance Dawn shouted, and ran out of the ship carrying a Cactuar sphere.
Tara took the sphere seeing the words 'Lobeira-Guadosalam' written on it, and touched the entrance. The sphere disappeared and a cactuar appeared holding it, before he was gone.
Smiling as the cactuar disappeared Tara took Willow's hand and refused to release it, as they walked into Guadosalam. Willow knew Tara was worried, just as she herself was worried, but she didn't want to scare anyone with what she'd saw. So she decided not to let it bother her, atleast until she could explain it better, and not scare anyone.
Walking inside Leblanc's home they could hear muffled talking coming from the living room, opening the door the girls saw Ormi and Logos.
Clearing his throat Ormi deepened his voice, "Leblanc there's nothing to worry about." He tried to imitate Nooj. "How's that?"
"Not deep enough." Logos sighed.
"Then let's see you do it."
"Leblanc, there is nothing to worry about."
Ormi doubled over laughing. "Now, look who's talking!"
"What in the hell are you doing?" Buffy asked stepping inside the room.
Turning around Logos shook his head. "The boss has been...depressed since Nooj disappeared."
"And we wants to comfort her."
"Oh," Buffy said getting the picture. "That was supposed to be Nooj, right?"
"Was it that bad?" Logos asked
"Yup." Both Buffy and Tara said causing both men to look at the floor.
Willow looked at the two sad looking men and couldn't help but to voice her question "Do you really think that would help... even if you did sound like him?"
"Okay... whatever you say." Willow said and followed them out.
"Please talk to the boss." Logos said as he and Ormi sat down on the stairs.
Entering Leblanc's room brought back those bad memories of the last time she was in that room. Buffy shivered. Faith glanced at her questionably.
"Long story." Buffy said and stopped to see Leblanc lying on her bed looking miserable.
"Leave me alone."
"Oh come on! Don't you want to hunt spheres? We'll get all the spheres if ya don't move it!" Buffy grinned
"I don't care. There's no point if my Noojie-Woojie isn't there to smile."
"You're a mess." Tara sighed watching Leblanc lower her hear even further.
"I don't care... now please leave me alone."
"Okay." Willow said and pulled Tara out of the room.
Once at the bottom of the stairs Ormi and Logos looked up hopefully, and frowned when Willow shook her head. Logos led them back into the living room and nearly fell forward as Ormi slapped his back.
"What if we showed her a sphere of him?" Ormi looked from Logos to the girls
"Why ask us? Just go for it." Faith said and leaned against the wall.
"Of course! The sphere we took in Bevelle! Would you like to watch it?" Logos asked about as happy as a snake.
"What's on it?" Tara asked not really wanting a reminder of the chamber.
"Don't know we haven't watched it yet. Please, follow me." The girls followed the two men into the back room. Logos picked up a sphere and pressed the button.
"What the hell is this!?" Willow shouted gripping her sword when she saw the image pop up of Tara's butt.
"Ormi shot it! Not me!"
"Sorry! I didn't know it was on!" Ormi said backing away from Willow.
"Hey! Someone's there!" Buffy shouted pointing to a form above Vegnagun's chamber.
"Hold on I can zoom in."
Logos got a closer picture of the form as the girls' eyes widened. "It's Nooj! What was he doing there?" Buffy asked as the recording ended.
"I don't like that. Nooj just happened to be there, after Vegnagun disappeared?" Willow said and began pacing.
"There's more isn't there?" Tara asked stopping Willow's pacing by wrapping her arms around her waist.
"It's just all the secrets, one after another."
"Please, don't mention this to the boss." Logos pleaded
"Why not?" Faith asked confused.
"Vegnagun is dangerous, nothing us sphere hunters have any business fooling around with. But if the boss knew Nooj were involved, well...there'd be no stopping her. And if anything were to happen to her..."
Buffy sighed. "You guys got it rough, don't you?"
"If only she noticed."
"Hey, is that one from Bevelle, too?" Tara asked seeing another sphere on the desk
"No, this one we found." Ormi said picking the sphere up and playing it.
An image appeared with Glory in a cage swinging over a deep hole.
"The only reason the war's dragging on is because Zanarkand refuses to surrender." A guard said from the side.
"You're wrong!" Glory shouted trying to hit the guard. "If you'd stop attacking, there wouldn't be a war!"
"We're not falling for that."
"Someday... I promise you, your precious weapons will end up destroying you."
[End of Sphere]
"Know what? Keep that sphere away from me." Buffy said backing up and into Faith's waiting arms.
"We really didn't want it... that woman looks like Glory, and if it is her, I really don't want the sphere."
"That's all right, Logos. You keep it, we've... uh, gotta get to the sphere break tournament, okay? Bye!" Willow said hurriedly pulling Tara out the door, and back to the airship.
"Dawn, please take us to Luca!" Willow said as soon as Faith and Buffy boarded.
Dawn had sat the ship down on the highroad entrance to Luca, locked the ship up and followed everyone to the tournament. Several hundred people were standing in the Luca Square waiting to challenge others, knowing they were only three challenges away from the champion. Shelinda was standing on the steps with a microphone in her hand, as she spoke into a camera.
"You can't go anywhere in Luca without hearing about the Sphere Break Tournament! And now it's just about time for the competition to begin. But first a word from our sponsor, and creator of Sphere Break. Lady Jenny."
"Famlusa, ajanouha!" (Welcome, everyone!) Jenny smiled. "I am looking forward to a fair competition. May the best man or woman win!"
"Go time!" Buffy shouted causing Jenny to giggle.
"Kuut milg du oui!" (Good luck to you!) Jenny said and nodded.
Buffy, Willow, and Tara shot off in different directions to challenge the other players. Willow was happily beating the younger men and women, she growled when she lost to the champion.
Buffy also won her first three matches, only to lose at the hands of the champion and screamed. Tara having hardly practiced won her three matches and was led to the champion.
"Oohhh! I was so close!" Buffy shouted as Tara walked up.
Seeing Buffy looking just as unhappy as Willow she cocked her head to the left. "Who beat you?" she asked and heard a giggle from her right. Looking over her eyes went wide.
"It's elementary, really, once you get the hang of it." Shinra giggled "And once I outplay Tara, the tournament is mine!"
"Get him, Tara!" Buffy shouted
"Beat him at his own game!" Willow shouted smirking at Shinra.
"You're goin' down." Tara said walking over.
"The probability you'll win is slim at best." Shinra said meet her half way to being the first round.
Buffy and Willow cheered every time Tara broke Shinra's sphere. With a fifty-coin quota, and only fifteen rounds to reach it, Tara used the Echo Bonus. By round fourteen Tara made the quota and happily jumped into the air. Shinra looked down completely baffled.
"I won!" Tara said as Willow pulled her into a kiss.
"Hmph! My goggles fogged up." Shinra said unhappily.
"And the winner of the first Sphere Break tournament is... High Summoner Tara!" Shelinda shouted happily into the camera. "Presenting her award is our sponsor, Lady Jenny."
"Luhknydimydeuhc!" (Congratulations!) Jenny said handing Tara a check for ten thousand gil.
"Thank you." Tara said and hugged Jenny.
With the tournament over the group headed back to the ship, laughing at Shinra all the way. Half way up the stairs Shinra stopped and turned toward Tara.
"I swear I'll get you next time!" He shouted and ran off laughing like a maniac.
"Hey! Get back here and fight!" Buffy shouted only to be pulled into a kiss by Faith.
When they boarded the ship the alarm was going off as red lights blinked on and off. Running up to the bridge, the girls waited as Mizu typed on her consol. She gasped and turned toward the girls with an unreadable look on her face.
"Reports from Kilika asking for help. One from Djose, and one in Bevelle... but it's weird something about Baralai, Nooj, and Gippal."
"What?" Faith asked confused.
"The full report reads: Trouble. Baralai, Nooj, and Gippal meeting in chamber."
"Okay...that's odd." Willow said just as confused as Faith.
"Meeting in chamber? You don't think Vegnagun's chamber do you?" Tara asked not really wanting an answer.
"That's what I think...besides, Bahamut's chamber leads down to Vegnagun's." Willow sighed trying to clear the vision of the Aeon's from her mind.
"Great, we gotta go back do there to find out what they're up to." Buffy shivered.
"Where to?" Dawn asked starting the ship.
"I say we get to Kilika, then Bevelle, and then to Djose. Let Gippal take care of himself for a while." Buffy said starting to pace. "Tara, what do you think?"
"Okay with me. Will?"
Dawn nodded and lifted the ship into the air, setting course for Kilika Island.