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Xmas Giftfics 2012 Part 3

The results of the poll were quite surprising! I'm not sure what I was expecting, but that wasn't it. Still, I've taken it under advisement and herded my random writing impulses roughly in those directions.

So here are a few more of those Xmas giftfic fills!



For
gardensgnome
A. FF7/Fifth Act
B. Kunsel/Cloud or Kunsel & Cloud

C. Cloud thought that Kunsel's native habitat would be the city but learns that a good SOLDIER, especially a Turks orientated SOLDIER, can go native almost anywhere.

AN: I nearly didn't post this, because the very day after I wrote it signrain linked me to an awesome cracky little one-shot which had already used the idea, but hell, it's a giftfic and it's different enough, I just won't post it anywhere else. :/



“Hey, watch it!”


Cloud paused, looking down at his feet in consternation. He was deep inside the Gongaga jungle, and a touch-me toad had just spoken to him.


His hand automatically went up to the Ribbon tied securely around his bicep. Still there. Not a hallucination.


“Oh, hey, Cloud? That you? What are you doing out here?”


The toad knew his name, too. Maybe he’d finally proven everyone right by going crazy the natural way. “Have we met?”


“Have we- oh, right. Do you have a Transform materia on you? I was on the way back to mine.”


“I’ve got a Heal materia, will that do?”


“If you can get an Esuna out of it.”


Cloud dutifully cast Esuna, because he didn’t see any reason not to. A moment later, in a cloud of pink, pungent smoke, Kunsel appeared before him. “Hey, thanks man.” He patted himself down, adjusting his helmet to sit properly on his head.


Kunsel?” The Second Class had a habit of popping up in the oddest of places, but the Gongaga Jungle? “What are you doing here?” Kunsel almost exclusively took missions in Midgar, since a good chunk of his duties involved training up SOLDIER hopefuls. He never once seemed like the kind of SOLDIER who would be comfortable on a mission in the jungle.


“We can’t all pick and choose our missions, you know. Oh hey, it’s just over here. Seems so much further when you’re ankle-high.” Kunsel fished a glowing materia from the hollow in the base of a tree a couple of strides away.


Judging by the colour, this was the Transform materia he’d been talking about. “What would you have done if something happened to that?”


Kunsel shrugged. “The spell would have worn off eventually. And none of the native wildlife here will mess with the toads.” He stretched and yawned. “There was an infestation that was causing problems for the Reactor. But hey, mission accomplished!” He paused. “Why are you here?”


“Yuffie,” Cloud offered, and didn’t bother explaining beyond that. “You got hit, then?”


“By a toad? Give me some credit, I might only be Second Class but I can avoid a couple of Frog Songs.”


Cloud deadpanned. “This is what all of our materia training has come to. You turned yourself into a toad. On purpose.”


“I could have spent a week killing every touch-me toad I came across, or I could infiltrate their waterhole and destroy all the eggs and be done in a day.”


“You’re terrifying. Is there anything you’re not an expert in?”


“Look who’s talking,” Kunsel replied. “Come on, Zack’s parents live nearby, let’s go get some stories to embarrass him with later.”






For mauralucky7
A. FF7/Beloved
B.
Cloud and Aeris
C. A
nd to quote you "This is how the Planet ends: Someone stepped on Aeris's flowers"


AN: I obviously cheated and used a chunk of text from Beloved for the lead-in, making this more of an omake.





Cloud’s heart hammered at the sight and a dull roar filled his ears. The entire rear of the Church had collapsed into rubble.


What went wrong? Had they miscalculated? Had the Turks left another trap inside the Church? But even they wouldn’t dare mess with the spring-


Then that all-too-familiar sensation of static slithered up his spine, and Cloud knew.


"Sephiroth.”


The low chuckle that followed ran across his skin in a prickle of amusement, the bond echoing the sound. “Cloud.” His archenemy descended from the sky, black wing spread wide, landing as light as a feather. “I’ve been expecting you.”


Held in his grasp was the last person he expected to see.


“Cloud!”


His throat grew tight, and it became suddenly difficult to breathe. “Tifa?!” Then a moment later, more urgently, “The flowers!”


Sephiroth paused. “…Excuse me?”


Tifa had gone still, fear starkly visible on her features. “It’s too late Cloud. You have to run.”


Cloud stared past Sephiroth at the rubble behind him. Shredded leaves and petals whirled in the air like fragrant confetti.


“Where would I run to?” he asked, voice hollow.


“You understand, then,” Sephiroth drawled. “There’s no escape from this, Cloud. But if you come quietly, I can be convinced to spare the girl.”


Cloud shook his head. “…You think it’s you I’m afraid of?”


The earth began to shake beneath their boots. A low, subsonic rumble, that rose with the shifting debris to a dull roar. Sephiroth shifted his feet, the briefest expression of alarm flitting across his face.


“Congratulations,” Cloud said, staring at the remains of the Church flatly. “You got what you wanted. The end of the world. ”


Then the ground cracked, and the Lifestream burst into the sky.


The green river of light lashed the heavens like a furious dragon. Chunks of earth rained around them, as fissures opened beneath their feet, spreading cracks in the Planet’s surface.


“What is this?” Sephiroth demanded, as the column of mako rose, glowing green in a rapidly darkening sky.


“It’s your fault, you know,” Cloud murmured, gaze transfixed on their approaching doom. It was a tidal wave of Lifestream, that would bury them – the whole Planet – whole. Even Sephiroth could do nothing in the face of it.


“…You stepped on her flowers.”





For ratzels

A. Fallacious Deity/Beloved
B. Cloud(s)/Genesis, assorted observers
C. facepalm


AN: I had intended something both shorter and more cracky for this, but this is what came out, hope it suffices.  Technically takes place sometime after this giftfic fill from a previous set of giftfics.





The sun sank into the horizon, the light turning both sky and ocean a warm gold. Yet another perfect sunset in the idyllic coastal town.


The wind sails over the water’s surface
Quietly, but surely…” Genesis murmured, taking a long, deep breath. Even after several weeks, he had yet to tire of the clean, salty air. After years of living in dank caverns and ever-polluted Midgar, the subtle fragrances were wondrous to his enhanced senses.


His quiet repose was interrupted by a bright flash of light down at the beach. Too bright to be materia, but the wrong colour for fire and too diffuse to be artificial.


His brow furrowed, and his hand sought the reassuring presence of his rapier. The beach in front of the mansion was private, and though the building had been left empty for a number of years, the locals and tourists both had respected that. Cloud was due back, but he would be coming from the road, not the water.


It was thus only natural to investigate.


What he found, however, was nothing like what he’d expected.


It was Cloud after all, standing just beyond the shallows. That part, while unexpected, was not particularly surprising, although Genesis had not expected to see Angeal’s sword on his back instead of his beloved First Tsurugi. Had he made a detour to Midgar to collect it?


The trio of people with him, on the other hand…


One was a boy, dressed in bright red medieval armour and livery. He couldn’t have been any older than fourteen – even with the feathers in his helmet, he wouldn’t come up to Genesis’s shoulders. The others looked less strange – the bleach-blond man could have passed as any one of Costa Del Sol’s typical surfers, and the moody-looking brunet with the scar across his face was dressed wrong for the weather, but otherwise normal.


Their countenance seemed friendly enough, though, so he relaxed his guard. Marginally.


As he drew closer, their words came clear through the roar of waves. “-Might be Costa Del Sol,” Cloud was saying, which made hardly any sense without context.


“So we’ll need to travel to know for sure?” the kid asked. “I thought you said Edge.”


“This is annoying,” the moody one muttered.


“Hey, guys,” the surfer said. “Company.”


It wasn’t as though Genesis had been trying for stealth, so he simply called, “Care to introduce me to your friends, Cloud?”


Then Cloud whirled around, and all bets were off.


Genesis was intimately familiar with his partner's wardrobe, and nowhere in its depths were a pair of a bone-white leather boots, nor a shoulder pauldron set with turquoise gems. The outfit itself was also very much more SOLDIER than either of them sported these days - Cloud kept to the general style, but neither of them wore the stomach guard or suspenders anymore.


That wasn’t what most alarmed him, though. It was the eyes. More specifically, the complete lack of recognition in them.


“Do I know you?” Cloud asked, as guarded as when they’d first met.


This was the not the Cloud Strife he knew.


“What manner of trickery is this?” he snarled, readying a fireball with a flex of his fingers. A materia? A Confuse, perhaps, or a Charm. Or an imposter – a poor one. Or perhaps, most alarming, of all, a clone?


“Sounds like he knows you,” the moody one said, drawing his sword too – though there was something odd about the blade, as though a gun had been forged into the hilt.


“Wait!” the kid interrupted, jumping between them so fast Genesis found himself lurching into a defensive stance at the unexpected speed. “We have to find out where we are, first!” He turned to Genesis. “It might be a little confusing for you, but we’re not your enemies!”


“I’m not so sure about that,” the not-Cloud said. “He looks like SOLDIER.”

“Explain,” Genesis threatened. “And you’d best make it swift.”


“We’re dimensional-travellers. You know another Cloud Strife, right? But not one like him?” He gestured towards the not-Cloud.


Dimensional- “That’s preposterous.”


“Wait,” Cloud interrupted, brow furrowed. “I think I remember. One of the first worlds we stopped at. The one with Sephiroth. He was there.”


The trio eyed him thoughtfully now. Genesis did not extinguish the fireball still burning above his hand. “You’re right,” the kid agreed, then sighed. “And you didn’t know him in your original world, did you?”


“Aww, seriously?” the surfer burst out, facepalming so hard it looked like it hurt. “We’re in the wrong universe again?”


“This is getting ridiculous,” the brunet muttered.


Cloud seemed to slump, though the gesture was so miniscule Genesis would not have noticed if not for his adrenaline-induced hyper-awareness. “Cid?” he asked in a low voice.


That was when Genesis noticed the moogle, which had apparently been hiding behind the surfer.

Perhaps, on second thought, their stories of dimensional travel were not quite so preposterous after all. Not if they carried a summon with them, without the slightest sign of materia use.

“I don’t have the same sort of power as Cosmos or Chaos!” the moogle protested, wings fluttering in agitation. “Now that we’ve lost the point of origin, the calculations are extremely complex!”


“How far off are we, then?” the boy-knight wondered, then turned his gaze back towards Genesis. A thinker, he could tell that immediately. “How different is the Cloud you know from this one?”


The roar of a motorbike rose in the distance in a remarkable display of timing. Genesis smirked, and launched his fireball into the air, letting it explode. “You can ask him yourself.”


……………….


Cloud – his Cloud – took the news of their dimensional visitors in impressive stride. Genesis did suppose that it was not all that much more surprising than Sephiroth’s endless resurrections, or Reeve’s fortune-telling cat.


The sun sank below the ocean’s horizon as the strangers told their story, golden sunset replaced by lilac dusk. Their tale was as fantastical as the most epic of stageplays. A battle against gods that made Minerva herself look little more than a child, of countless worlds and dimensions pillaged for their champions, of pawns struggling against their mighty masters.


Were he not faced with incontrovertible proof, in a breathing, talking moogle, and another battle-weary Cloud Strife, Genesis would have thought it nothing more than fiction. Some cynical part of him, bred by ShinRa's many lies, still suspected that they might be particularly talented and creative actors.


There was a thought. "We mustn't let ShinRa get wind of this."


"We don't intend to stay long enough for ShinRa to matter," the other Cloud answered. "Cid, how long until you're ready to go again?"


"I can jump us at any time if it's urgent," the moogle replied. "But we could simply wind up further from our next destination. Two or three days to refine our exact position relative to the multi-verse would be ideal."


The other Cloud nodded. "That shouldn't be a problem. This world seems peaceful enough. Unless…" He sent a questioning glance at them, and Genesis waved a dismissive hand in vague confirmation.


“For once,” the man who’d been introduced as Tidus remarked cheerfully. He slapped the boy – Onion Knight, an odd designation that had Genesis insatiably curious – on the back. “Cheer up, squirt, we’re at the beach! If we have to take a break, can’t ask for much better. It kind of reminds of Besaid.”


"I miss Terra and Cecil," Onion Knight groaned. For the first time, he sounded the age he looked.


"Be grateful they've found their way home," Squall said. "At this rate the rest of us will spend another hundred years wandering."


"It's mostly yours and Cloud's fault, you know," Tidus pointed out. "It only took four tries to get Terra to the right world, and two for Cecil. But any time we try to get either of you guys back we wind up lost in the multi-verse for weeks."


"If you wanted to go next then you should have said something," Squall stated flatly.


Tidus immediately backed up with his hands in the air and an oddly strained laugh. "Hey, it's cool, I'm in no rush! Besides, Cloud's been waiting to go home longer than any of us!"


"You have a point, though," the other Cloud admitted quietly. "We should get Onion Knight home next."


Onion Knight immediately changed his tune. "I'm fine! We should definitely get you home first. We wouldn't have even escaped in the first place if it weren't for you!"


"Cid?" the other Cloud asked.


The moogle's wings fluttered erratically, causing him to bob and weave in the air. "It's true that the aftermath of the time compression in Squall's world makes calculations difficult – without a window to view the possible realities, we may need to spend some time eliminating probabilities manually. And the dimensional divergence is also quite crowded in this region. Onion Knight's is a great deal simpler in comparison."


"Then it's decided."


"But Cloud, you-" Onion Knight began to protest.


"I've been gone for a long time," the other Cloud interrupted, and Genesis heard the weight of years in his voice, and saw eternity in his gaze. "A few more months is nothing." There was a finality to his tone declaring the conversation over.


An awkward silence settled over the group, heavy with the weight of loss and loneliness.


Wandering souls, without rest.


“You can stay at the mansion,” his Cloud eventually offered. “We have spare rooms. And I’m guessing you probably don’t have any gil.”


“We appreciate it, thank you,” Onion Knight politely replied.


The other Cloud’s eyes sharpened at the ‘we’, though, his gaze suddenly calculating as it flicked back and forth between his counterpart and Genesis, cataloguing how close they stood together, their arms brushing. Surprisingly cagey of him – his Cloud wouldn’t have noticed unless they made out in front of him.


His voice, however, was surprisingly rough when he asked, “What about Tifa?”

Genesis’s lips parted, ready to spew forth his opinion on that particular matter, but then he paused, and noted how the trio of travellers tensed at the question, watching their Cloud carefully for the response.


This Cloud Strife was as fascinating as he was unsettling. He still carried the same indefinable air, the same aura of quiet strength, but it was tempered with what Genesis could only describe as exhaustion.


Somewhere along the line, the stubborness and dogged persistence he saw every day in his Cloud Strife had become something robotic, something distilled and siphoned over time until only the very essence of it remained. Where he kept moving forward not from determination so much as the habit of it.


So instead of the aspersions resting on the tip of his tongue, Genesis merely explained, “She’s in Edge. She’s fine.”


His Cloud stared at him out of the corner of his eyes – curiosity and surprise, he knew, as Genesis was not particularly gracious on the topic of Tifa.


But Genesis had been in such a place before. In the face of endless adversity, the hero needed a quest, however illusory, however faint and thin a hope it might be.


This other Cloud Strife hung on by a single gossamer thread. Genesis would not be the one to cut it.

Comments

( 26 comments — Leave a comment )
gardensgnome
May. 12th, 2013 11:22 am (UTC)
OMG you made Kunsel a baby killer! XD

That was just...hell I grinned the whole thing and laughed in an amused and horrified manner when Kunsel shared his tactics. Daaaaaaaamn ^_________^

*nips off to check poll results* I am unsurprised by Kunsel getting where he did. WE ALL LOVE US SOME KUNSEL!

Is it bad that I now want an omake of Cloud talking to an actual toad thinking it's Kunsel again and everyone, including himself Kunsel, wondering what Cloud's smoking and how to avoid it *snicker*

Also any chance of a link to the other fic? You've made me curious.

Now to go read the others and then bed for there is work in the morning.
sinnatious
May. 12th, 2013 02:18 pm (UTC)
Oh, of course! Remiss of me not to provide a link:
http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6144843/1/Escape-Plan-Green

XD The poll has actually been changing leaders constantly, Kunselfic was lagging for quite a while. Also I'm not sure what to make of the fact that some ten percent of people chose the mystery pile. It's been interesting!

I....I wish I had written the omake like that instead. That's HILARIOUS.

----
"What's he doing?" Zack whispered to Angeal.
Angeal shook his head sadly. "I have no idea. He's been talking to the toad for the last hour, won't let any of us get rid of it."
"Poor guy. I guess the stress has finally started getting to him."
----
killiara
May. 12th, 2013 05:55 pm (UTC)
I wanna read that omake now too!
aramisa
May. 13th, 2013 12:40 am (UTC)
So, the last fic was a time-travel/dimensional-crossover between Beloved and Fallacious Deity, right? And before of that, it was between that fic and The Fifth Act. So now you have to do a Beloved/The Fifth Act crossover to keep the balance; otherwise, all dimensions will break apart!
(Anonymous)
May. 13th, 2013 02:00 am (UTC)
TheFifthAct!Genesis approves of this idea.
sinnatious
May. 13th, 2013 08:48 am (UTC)
Bahahaha! You guys. :P
peangallery
May. 27th, 2013 02:40 am (UTC)
Hahaha! I agree with the above! Well! Now I'll have to remember what to ask for in 6 months.
caterfree10
May. 13th, 2013 01:49 am (UTC)
Hee, I love how Cloud's first reaction to weird stuff is to check for Ribbon still being there to confirm he's not been hit with a status spell of some kind. xD And ngl, I'd probably be thinking the same was as Cloud re: Touch-Me extermination. |D

I cackled so goddamn much at the destruction of the world via stepping on Aerith's flowers. I'm so glad no one else was in the house this morning so I could laugh as loudly as I wanted. :>

I know I hadn't commented on the first crossover with Fallacious Deity, but I love that I'm still reminded of Tsubasa in reading it, ahahaha. //will never stop loving it ever, fuck the haters I love the way they emphasize how many different timelines there are due to "dimensional divergence" (coded talk for "lots of people write fanfiction for these two fandoms", y/y? XD). The compare and contrast Genesis notices between his Cloud and FD!Cloud was also a favorite. C:

Also, someone stop me from rereading those last few paragraphs over and over again fffffffff- //brick'd
sinnatious
May. 13th, 2013 12:04 pm (UTC)
Glad you enjoyed them! Heh, Fallacious Deity's spin offs have totally taken a Tsubasa angle, haven't they? <3 LOL, you read my mind, that was absolutely what I was thinking with the 'dimensional divergence' *cough*.
(Anonymous)
May. 13th, 2013 01:56 am (UTC)
Omg the first one was glorious. There was not a moment I was not grinning in delight while reading it. It's your choice, of course, but, personally, I like reading the same concepts as written by different people. I find it fascinating to see each person's take on the same subject.

(Honestly, I have read some of the linked story and I wouldn't have made the connection to your story if you hadn't said it. Is it because of the status effect?)

As for the second one, wow. I found the first one hilarious, but then I realized it had nothing on the second story. It's just... the deadpan matter-of-fact tone. XD

As for the third one, in between my fangirlish flailing at another peek at Beloved, I noted:


Cloud – his Cloud – took the news of their dimensional visitors in impressive stride. Genesis did suppose that it was not all that much more surprising than Sephiroth’s endless resurrections, or Reeve’s fortune-telling cat.


I was going all "hey, wait, why those things and not magic and summons and stuff?" and then I realized "oh, those are fantasy-type stuff for us, but perfectly normal in FFVII!" Resurrection and Cait Sith are the weird things for them. Just, a nice detail, you know. :D Your world-building and general attention to detail rock!!! less-than-three

But anyway, wow, Genesis's insights and also character development and character analyses going around all over the place in such a small time. Awesome. c:

And that last line. You do know how to pack a punch in a sentence.

I loved all three of the stories. ALL THREE. :D
sinnatious
May. 13th, 2013 12:17 pm (UTC)
Eh, fanfic by its nature often retreads a lot of the same ground, especially anything set remotely near canon, just one of those things. It only got a reaction from me because of the timing really! XD Maybe I'm just more sensitive to the similarities.

LOL, thank you, but all credit for world-building belongs to Square! They've put so much detail into canon that there's heaps to draw on, it's part of what makes FF7 fic so fun to write.
signrain
May. 13th, 2013 09:17 am (UTC)
I think your first fic and Escape-Plan-Green is nothing look alike but both are good to read. :P

The second fic.. I heard a big crack.. Oh... Yeah!..it's a crack. xD

And the third, well, The wandering soul knows no rest..



sinnatious
May. 13th, 2013 12:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you~!
rafira
May. 13th, 2013 12:21 pm (UTC)
oh wow, these are interesting little snippets that make me want the rest of the story! :P very well written.
sinnatious
May. 13th, 2013 12:39 pm (UTC)
Thank you! Oh dear, until your comment I hadn't realised that all three are effectively spin-offs of other fic! Whoops.
rafira
May. 20th, 2013 11:55 am (UTC)
oh, more of yours? which ones?
sinnatious
May. 20th, 2013 12:08 pm (UTC)
The first was a spin-off from Fifth Act, the second was an omake of a scene in Beloved, and the third a crossover sequel to both Beloved and Fallacious Deity. Prompters are wringing sequels from me one giftfic at a time! If you want to read any of them, they can be found here on the masterlist: http://sinnatious.livejournal.com/89964.html

...In retrospect, I misread the meaning of your original comment! But my original sentiment stands. :)
rafira
May. 27th, 2013 05:57 am (UTC)
oh, ok! i'll check them out later :) have a lovely week!
rafira
May. 27th, 2013 05:58 am (UTC)
wow, you're prolific :O
sinnatious
May. 27th, 2013 08:27 am (UTC)
Nah, just been writing for a long time.
ratzels
May. 13th, 2013 05:38 pm (UTC)
Eeeeeeeee!

Kunsel is eminently practical regarding frog extermination, and Cloud's nonplussed reaction is charming.

The sheer crack of Aeris destroying the world in revenge for her flowers was delightful.

I am beyond thrilled at the amazingness you created from my silly little prompt. Genesis being so observant and so careful of other!Cloud just wrenched my heart in the best of ways. I could almost see him remembering how his careless words made his Cloud lose himself to Sephiroth and not repeating the mistake with this other Cloud. In short: <3
sinnatious
May. 14th, 2013 12:24 pm (UTC)
I'm relieved you liked it! It was a lot of fun to write. And Genesis is indeed learning. <3
mauralucky7
May. 18th, 2013 04:38 pm (UTC)
My prompt was so great, I love how everything is just said in such a deadpan tone of voice. To be honest though I wasn't the first to come up with this omake prompt, I'm pretty sure you did yourself. Ijust prompted it like you told me too :D

http://sinnatious.livejournal.com/129759.html?thread=2613215#t2613215

The other two prompts were great as well. And you really have linked The Fifth Act to Beloved now haven't you with Fallacious Deity. What do you bet next Christmas that there will be a score of Fifth Act/Beloved prompts?
sinnatious
May. 19th, 2013 02:15 am (UTC)
Yay, I'm glad you liked it! I was surprised when you threw that line back at me, but pleasantly so!

LOL, oh god, I hope not! I would have no idea how I'd tackle such a crossover. XD
aelathehuntress
Jun. 23rd, 2013 06:52 am (UTC)
Lovely stories! I adore your Kunsel and Genesis. ^_^
pt_tucker
Oct. 3rd, 2016 11:51 pm (UTC)
Frog One: Oh man, I love Kunsel. I love how serious he is about "infiltrating" the enemy. While his plan undoubtedly works, it's so hilarious at the same time. XD And I love how they just randomly decide to go visit Zack's parents to get dirt on him.
( 26 comments — Leave a comment )