one passing night

the evening is spread out against the sky


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004 || all you need is a guardian angel
+ Shadow +
hisdreamsmyfate wrote in onepassingnight
Desolation. Death. Destruction.

It spans as far as the eye can see, possibly even further. To the outreaches of the Planet and beyond, only growing in its ravenous hunger and taking anything it can with it. It's a horrible, bloody sight... not one would expect to find bright, white wings shimmering in the too-bright sun. Even less so, the bundle in his dirtied arms, sound asleep.

The wings flutter once, dropping a few, floating white feathers to the remains of the torched building they were perched upon. The tips of the feathers are also burned, almost even rotting as they lay there, guided by a gentle breeze in the silent environment. And as the man shifts, the faint glow of a halo can be seen reflecting off of a broken window, the beaten body sagging against the brittle, splintered wood. He's tired of the fighting, the chaos and the panic caused by those soldiers. They weren't anything like he remembered, and... this was the result. Insanity finally caught up to him, and in a sense, he was glad to have passed before it'd gotten hold of him, too.

The infant in his arms stirs, a few soft, fussy groans jumping out of it.

In response, he gently rocked the baby in his arms, whispering in a low tone, trying to get his adopted bundle to calm down. Though still dirty, he'd long-since been able to heal it. It'd just... taken a toll on whatever spirit energy he had left, tethering him to this bleak world.

"Just a little while longer, kiddo."

[ooc: So... kind of an odd dream for him to be having, but pretty much? While Zack himself is still canon, he's dreaming of a universe that *did* fall to ShinRa. Certain things have been changed around, and I'll explain more in detail to whomever responds~]

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we'll go slow but - Zack? Baby? Cloud is all inquiring minds want to know :\

He picks his way over the broken rubble and somehow the dream only seems natural. The world's gone to hell and it's probably his fault. He's just gotten so tired of fighting. What's new is the form ahead of him.

With... wings?

His hand finds the hilt of the sword at his back in instinctive response to those wings but then it relaxes. Let's go. No. No, that's Zack. Zack's good. Zack's not going to start lighting things on fire. Zack's -

got a baby?

Okay. That's new.

So Cloud will stop in the ruined doorway.

"Zack?"

IT'S OUR MENCHILD CLOUD.

The child is a survivor, of a horrible string of events that should have never happened but did anyway. Without someone to look after it, care for it, and with both of its parents laying dead in a mass of smoldering brick and wood somewhere... what else could he do? Leave the poor kid there?

He holds the sleeping form tightly in his weakened grasp, wanting all of this to just end.

The ground crinkles and bright blue eyes snap up quickly at the arriving form, adjusting his grip to reach for his own Buster Sword. If it was a SOLDIER, he would fight. He'd protect the baby, what was left of this village, stop them all and--

...

It's Cloud. Cloud's here, Cloud's alive and hopefully sane and...

A small, faint smile spreads on his bloodied face, the relief evident in the slackening of his shoulders.

"Cloud..."

He sits up, pulling himself more out of the rubble.

"I thought I'd lost you."

bad fanfiction - here we come! Cloud says he was NOT the mother

"Zack..."

He's getting more used to seeing his friend when he closes his eyes but the blow never softens against his heart.

I thought I'd lost you

That's his line.

His arm gives a throb and his eyes narrow at it. Not now. Not here. But he stays in the doorway instead of stepping forward. He probably shouldn't be here.

It doesn't mean he can turn his back on that look on Zack's face.

"I'm here."

Are you so sure about that? Cloud does to seem to have some womanly fetishes. B]

Cloud stays in the doorway and Zack doesn't leave his perch just yet, watching his old friend with saddened eyes. Of course Cloud wouldn't want to come forward. Not to someone who couldn't prevent all of this. Couple it with the fact that he'd already died long ago in keeping the other man out of danger. No doubt this was awkward.

His wings tucked behind his back, relaxing back into the mass of broken wood and debris. Cloud just being here, not having run off by the Sky Blue Eyes that was such a horrible sight nowadays... there was still trust there. He was grateful for that.

"ShinRa did this." His voice is quiet, grieving. "The remaining SOLDIERs, they... all became monsters. I don't know where's still safe."

He drew a breath, closing his own exhausted eyes and trying to hide the dimmness of his own halo.

"You became one of them, Cloud."

[ooc: Also! Zack's death hasn't happened yet, but it's based off of what he was told.]

Edited at 2011-10-24 05:00 pm (UTC)

He steals women's underwear, Zack. He doesn't wear them..... often.

He stands silent, still in the doorway. He doesn't belong here. It's more apparent than ever when Zack starts to talk. Zack needs someone useful, someone to stand side by side with him and not fail him. And Cloud's the last man for that job considering his track record. His head aches or maybe that's his chest. It doesn't matter. What matters is that it's obvious Zack needs help - and he's fucked because all he's got is Cloud instead.

His head does come up though at Zack's last words, eyes going wide. And there's fear in that blue but - there's something else too. Almost as if he expected that somehow. His hand goes self-consciously to his sleeved arm and his heavy boots shuffle in the rubble. Backing up.

Monster. Puppet on a string.

Innocent girl's blood on his knuckles.

Zack's better off without him. Always was.

It still makes him feel like a coward though, leaving his friend that way. So he stops in the shadows, on his way out but unable to go and his feet shuffled in the rubble again as his eyes go anywhere but at his friend.

"Sorry."

ooc: someone told Zack? oooo, Cloud would not take that well. >:[

NOPE NOPE AERITH TOLD ME EVERYTHING.

He isn't sure what to say. What can he say to the man he'd completely failed to save in life? It was never Cloud's fault to begin with, wasn't anyone's but Hojo and the rest of ShinRa and their stupidity. And now...

"I don't wanna hear that."

The SOLDIER's tone is quiet. Serious.

"What matters now is that you've got your own mind back, right?" This much is enough to have him look up, to offer a gentle smile to the man he could once again call 'friend'. "And now that that's outta the way, we can put an end to this nightmare. Sephiroth's sane again, too. We're all coming back together..."

And Zack himself would hold out as long as possible, even if the Planet's spirit energy - or lack thereof - threatened to have him vanish from existance entirely. He would keep fighting, just as it always was, to get things back to normal.

"...c'mere, Cloud."

... right. Cause... Aerith would NEVER obfuscate. Ever. Right?

[his chin dips even lower when Zack rejects the apology. It's not as if he doesn't have every right to do that. 'Sorry' is a pretty sad excuse anyway. It doesn't change anything. Cloud's head does come up in surprise at the next part though, blue eyes widening and when Zack calls him over, he comes simply because it doesn't occur to him not to. He pulls to a stop when he's still about halfway to Zack though and his hand hasn't left his covered arm.

"I thought I killed Sephiroth."

Oh nooooo. Dressing you up like a 20-dollar whore was... just to get you into the mansion. Yeah.

"Cloud. Come here."

His tone strengthens when the other stops, and those quiet words don't pass his enhanced hearing. He... knew what Cloud meant, about Sephiroth being here. About the two of them together and Sephiroth being the root of this problem. But the man was alive again, trying to reverse the process, and he'd kept Zack himself from fading again on more than one occasion.

He just had to get Cloud to see that, now.

"Things are different now. An' after bein' here for a little while, you'll start to understand that. What's important is if you trust me."

you've got a kinky girlfriend, Zack.

Cloud didn't respond to the order. And he didn't respond to the comment about being around long enough to understand. What he did respond to was Zack's questioning his trust in the dark haired man. Cloud's head, which had started to sink, snapped back up and for just a minute the blue fire in them was purely Cloud without a trace of fever or foreign influence. His voice didn't change to match it, still low and steady, but it didn't waver either.

"I trust you."

And because actions meant more than words, he took the rest of the steps that brought him to Zack. Wings or no wings, Sephiroth or no, Zack was Zack and Cloud's trust was complete. For that moment, Cloud was himself and so his eyes held his friend's for a minute longer and then dropped to the baby.

"Didn't know you were playing stork now too."

You're even kinkier for going along with it. B]

And that was all the former-SOLDIER needed. He gives a soft laugh, bowing his head back down to the tiny body in his arm, then looking back up to meet his friend's similar blue eyes. The sternness, the hesitance in them was gone as soon as it'd arrived, and the relief was evident in the SOLDIER's posture.

"That's all I wanted to hear from you, buddy."

The infant in his arms stirred, giving a fussy moan before the man's arms juggled carefully in trying to calm it down. Blue eyes were locked back down on the tiny, dirtied face, his tone softened more as to not wake the resting child again.

"Poor kid was just about dead when I found him."

He responded seriously, shifting a hand to brush away a stray, golden lock on the nearly-bald head. Whatever hair was growing in had been matted with dirt and blood, and he'd wished there was some place to properly wash it off to keep the poor thing from getting an infection. "I managed to take out a SOLDIER that was just about ready to stomp on him."

hey, it was only once. I don't even want to KNOW what you two used to get up to

Cloud stepped closer. It let him soak in the feeling of Zack being there and real and alive and it let him look down at the baby which he made no move to touch. It was scrawny and dirty but it obviously still had some fight in it by the way it was fussing. It reminded him of the babies he'd seen in the slums of Midgar when he was being what he thought a mercenary should be. He'd never paid them much attention then, but their mother's had never been Zack.

What kind of monster turned on children?

What would he ever do if he hurt Marlene or Denzel?

Blinking dully, not willing to let the thought take hold for fear it might come true if he did, he nodded.

"He looks just like you."

--no. No you really don't. Though you should SINCE YOU HAVE MY MEMORY.

Zack blinked, then glanced down at the infant again, giving a light smile at the othe man's words. He'd... never really paid all that much attention to it before, but the baby did look like himself, back when he was living in Gongaga with his parents.

The thought of his parents back home, possibly dead, was... not a good one. He felt a painful pang at his heart, holding the child closer as he tried to draw his attention back to Cloud. His Cloud. Not that monster that led an army of SOLDIERs to this devastation.

"Except we don't want this little guy turnin' SOLDIER on us, huh?"

Carefully, the winged man shifted to try and jump off the mound of rubble, his movements stiff and pained, but still swift enough to fight. He wouldn't be giving up now, not even when the entire Planet's energy ran dry. He'd find a way to exist... somehow.

"Maybe we should be glad he can't understand what's goin' on."

Zack... there were things even JENOVA wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole to copy/paste into my head

Cloud could regret giving up his materia. It was part of the Planet and everyone on the team had silently agreed not to use it anymore the same way no one would use mako energy anymore. But a good kick of a mastered Restore right now would have been healthy for Zack and Cloud was sure the Planet could spare a little of it's juice.

Or... looking around... maybe not.

His hand shifted at his side, almost as if he was going to reach out and help balance Zack but it didn't follow through on the gesture. Instead, face expressionless and voice to match, he asked:

"Zack - where's my family?"

so the whole plot of FF7 was Cloud copy/pasting things to spread wank?

Zack had turned to lead the two of them back to base before the young man's question rang in his ears. He stiffened, pausing in his step and unable to look the other in the face. But the change of subject, and the former-SOLDIER's hurriedness spoke volumes, still speaking quietly as to not cause the infant to stir.

"--base's just around the corner here. We've got a few good men an' women left, so the area's pretty secure."

He started walking, hoping Cloud would drop the subject long enough for them to reach help. "Sephiroth's leadin' us, but he's back in his right mind. Everything he's been doin' here, I'm proof of that. We'll be safe."

well, there was a snowboarding game too

He doesn't shift to join Zack when his friend starts to move off. In fact, he doesn't even turn his head to follow him with his eyes. Instead, Cloud simply stays just as still as if he were made out of some of those stones Zack was just resting on and his eyes don't change.

"Zack - " neither does the voice. "Where's my family?"

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