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The Fifth Act, Chapter 16

Title: The Fifth Act

Rating:
T for violence.

Summary: FFVII Time-travel. Gen. Cloud has an accident with a Time Materia.

Author's Note: Hello to the new readers!  It appears I owe a Lizeth on DA thanks for the rec.

Now back to writing Christmas gift shortfics.  I imagine it might go a little faster if I didn't fail so epically at the 'short' part.


Previous Chapter  

__________________

The Fifth Act Chapter 16

__________________  

 

Cloud shot up out of the bed, rolling into a crouch.  Where-

Angeal blinked.  "Something the matter, Strife?"

He took a deep breath, and forced himself to relax.  Nibelheim was not burning.  There was no Masamune sticking through his chest.  When he looked in the mirror, Sephiroth's cruel, twisted visage would not be staring back at him.


Angeal was still looking at him with a strange expression on his face.  He straightened and stared the First Class in the eye.  "What are you doing here?"  He didn't feel comfortable sleeping in this building as it was - the idea that someone with the right clearance could barge in at any time...


"Our mission parameters changed - we're leaving in half an hour.  I’m here to wake you up. I knocked, but you didn’t answer." He paused, then asked lightly, "Nightmare?"

 

Cloud turned away under the guise of gathering his things. “It’s nothing.”

 

Angeal didn’t look like he believed him, but didn’t press the issue. “I’ll wait in the hallway.”

 

As soon as he was gone, Cloud took a deep breath, shaking the last images of the dream from his mind. Things had been rough since Nibelheim, with old wounds torn open, and walking the halls of ShinRa didn’t help. His subconscious had taken to tormenting him almost daily, to the point where he became tempted to sneak out and sleep at the church again. But the nightmares weren’t anything new – only their frequency. With a sigh, he shrugged into his Third Class uniform, casting a longing look at his black pants. As much as he preferred his own clothes, the uniform helped him blend in. At least they weren’t that different, even though the turtleneck felt constricting after so long.

 

It only took a few minutes to get dressed and gather his things. When he opened the door, Angeal gave him a short wave from his position against the wall. “That was fast. I guess the spikes are natural, huh?”

 

Cloud shrugged, running a hand through them self-consciously.

 

“Zack takes about half an hour to get his hair right in the morning. I thought you might be the same.” He clapped his hands together. “Alright then. We’re going by helicopter, so if we get an early start, we might be able to make it back the same day.”

 

“Where are we going?”

 

“Banora.”

 

Banora?

 

The name stirred something in his memory, but he couldn’t recall ever stopping there before. There weren’t many places within a day’s travel of Midgar he hadn’t been with his delivery service. 

 

Banora.

 

The crater.

 

The village Genesis had emptied, and then ShinRa had wiped off the face of the map. 

 

Unlike Nibelheim, they hadn’t rebuilt it. 

 

“I grew up there,” Angeal made idle conversation as they headed for the helipad. “Genesis – you met him in Wutai – did too. If the mission is finished quickly enough, I’ll take a few minutes out to visit home, if you don’t mind.”

 

Cloud shrugged, but watched the First carefully out of the corner of his eyes. Visiting home? Could it be related to degradation?

 

Maybe not. He couldn’t be jumping at shadows all the time regarding Angeal. When he’d gone to Nibelheim – the first, the last true Nibelheim - he’d stopped in to see his mother, hadn’t he? His throat tightened at the memory. 

 

The elevator opened to the helipad. Cold, sharp winds buffeted them, the height dizzying. The Plate, all of Midgar – from the top of ShinRa Headquarters, everything looked so insignificant. It almost made him understand how they could entertain the idea of dropping the Sector 7 Plate, just to crush Avalanche. Almost.

 

Angeal didn’t spare a glance for the view – no doubt he’d seen it many times before. Instead, he approached the black helicopter, and Cloud forcefully dragged his attention to it, surprised to realise he recognised the pilot. “Tseng.”

 

“Strife, Commander Hewley,” he greeted, tied-back hair and perfectly pressed suit somehow remaining unruffled despite the breeze.

 

“Stop it, Tseng, Angeal’s fine.” He turned to Cloud. “He’s our pilot today.”

 

Cloud gave Tseng a dubious look. As patchy as his memory might be, he remembered him crashing the helicopter at Modeoheim clearly. The Turk misinterpreted his stare, and explained, “All Turks are trained to pilot a variety of transport. It’s part of our duty in protecting the President.”

 

“Right.” At least he didn’t get motion-sick anymore, and if he’d survived a helicopter crash as a lowly trooper, it probably wouldn’t kill him now. “What sort of business would the Turks have in a small town like Banora, though?” He worded his question casually, but it probably wouldn’t work. Cloud didn’t really do small talk.

 

“ShinRa has a warehouse in the area containing some sensitive research,” was all Tseng would say. “A routine errand. I should be back at the helicopter before you’ve finished your mission.”

 

He nodded, because how else could he respond? He brushed past Tseng, boarded the helicopter, and a few minutes later the engine roared to life, killing all hope of further conversation. 

 

Midgar rolled away behind them in a matter of minutes, until it was nothing more than an unsightly smudge on the blue horizon. Cloud watched the wastes scroll by beneath him, giving way to rolling green hills. The landscape really didn’t look that different to his time, this high up. If he ignored Angeal’s presence by his side, he could pretend the past few months were nothing more than a vivid hallucination.

 

He still couldn’t be sure it wasn’t, but either way, he was stuck in it.

 

It didn’t take long to get to their destination by helicopter – a little over two hours, though Cloud didn’t keep close tabs on the time. He had plenty to occupy his thoughts, and would brood the whole day away under any other circumstances. 

 

Banora soon appeared before his eyes, and he had the odd sensation of seeing it before, even though he knew he hadn’t. Another Zack memory, then, though this one was fuzzy so Zack must not have spent much time admiring the scenery.

 

The helicopter set down on an empty field on the outskirts of the village, long grass waving chaotically in the gusting wind. Cloud hopped out even before the rotors wound down, eyes sweeping the countryside, looking for evidence of the griffon tycoons that had been sighted in the orchards. 

 

“The village is over there,” Angeal indicated. “But your targets have mostly been seen in the east.”

 

Cloud nodded to show he heard. Tycoons were aggressive – all he’d need to do was wander around until he got deep enough into their territory, and they’d attack. At least, all of the griffons he’d fought before had been like that. Monsters didn’t seem quite as vicious these days. Mako pollution hadn’t driven them all wild yet.

 

“I’ll leave you gentlemen here,” Tseng said, closing up the sleek black helicopter behind him and locking it, as though there were someone out here in the sticks who could fly it, let alone steal it. “Departure time is 1700 hours. If you’re going to be later, call.” Then he strode off among the trees. Cloud could glimpse a grey structure in the distance – probably ShinRa’s warehouse. 

 

He took a deep breath, trying to identify all the unusual scents in Banora. The crisp, clean air, coloured only faintly with the tang of helicopter fuel, was a welcome change after the past few weeks in Midgar’s choking haze. His gaze was drawn to the fruit on the trees, and he wandered over, inspecting it. Griffons were typically omnivorous – had the fruit been what lured them so close to town?

 

“Dumapples,” Angeal provided, and twisted one from a branch in a practiced motion, throwing it to Cloud. He caught it and turned it over in his hands. Pale skin, with a slightly lavender hue. After a moment’s reflection, he realised he recognised it – Tifa had a dusty bottle of wine on the top shelf in the bar that bore this image. It remained corked, because apparently the right occasion – or perhaps the right wallet – hadn’t turned up to use it yet. The fruit was a luxury item in his time – to see acres upon acres of it sprawling across the countryside, completely unguarded, left him off-balance. Just when he thought he had the hang of the past and future thing, something small like this would upset his equilibrium again.

 

It felt a little bit too much like when he slowly came to realise he wasn’t exactly who he claimed to be. Constantly stumbling across reminders of his lies, breaking down misconceptions, discovering things he thought to be truths to be fanciful fabrications.

 

The helicopter ride had given him too much time for thought. Cloud latched onto the mission. “I’ll try to finish this quickly. So you can visit your family,” he murmured.

 

Angeal waved a hand dismissively. “Don’t rush yourself on my account. Just concentrate on doing it properly.”

 

Cloud nodded, and strode off into the orchard, making sure to make plenty of noise as he went, snapping twigs underfoot and letting his gloves drag through the leaves. He could hear Angeal following, much more quietly, at a distance.   

 

It felt good to be out in the countryside, away from Midgar, where things grew and there weren’t so many blatant signs of the Planet wasting away. The lack of gawking crowds was a bonus too – whenever the black-haired First accompanied him on any Midgar missions, they inevitably gathered onlookers. And even though he’d only been at it for a couple of weeks, he’d started to notice the same few girls loitering in the area whenever he went out to complete solo missions, too. He didn't like being the focus of any attention - had been hoping that so long as he wasn't a First, he could fly under the radar. 

 

He couldn't really complain about it, though - once upon time, he'd been one of those fans who drank in every little piece of information he heard about the General, and it wasn’t like he didn’t already know about the various SOLDIER fan clubs. Even Zack got a fan club when he became a First. He didn’t think he deserved a fan club, not when he’d been a Third for less than two weeks, but he supposed some of Angeal’s fans must have noticed that their idol was supervising him. Didn’t make it any less awkward.

 

The sound of a cracking twig – not one of his – reached his ears. Cloud knew better than to pause, but his senses came alert as he dragged his attention back to the task at hand. He slowed his pace a little, and kept his eyes focused in the opposite direction to the shuffling movement in the undergrowth. He had something’s attention, tycoon or not. 

 

He let his fingers rest on the hilt of his sword as he continued on, searching for a clearing in the trees. The birdsong died off, leaving the rustling wind as his only company. Cloud quickened his pace. His enhanced hearing could pick up the shuffle and breath of monsters all around now.

 

Something wasn’t right.

 

In one swift move, Cloud re-linked his Bolt and All materia. Barely a second later, five black griffons dropped from the trees around him.

 

All at once? Tycoons weren’t that smart

 

“Strife!”

 

The warning didn’t even register. A storm of electricity lashed out from his sword, stunning the flock of monsters. Not enough to kill them, not when he’d fired off the spell so quickly. First Tsurugi came down, cleaving the closest one in half. Two others had already recovered, snarling. He wouldn’t be fast enough. He pressed the release, breaking the sword in two. The first blade speared the tycoon in the throat – the second missed by a hair’s width as the creature leapt backwards, screeching. The others were back on their feet. Three against one. Fair odds.

 

He dodged a swipe of a claw, crouching low and stabbing the monster in the chest. No time to pull the blade out – he left it behind and continued on with the second half. He broke the sword in two again, fending off one tycoon while slashing at the other. The keening battle cry died in a gurgle. He whipped the short blade out, rejoined it with the primary, and charged at the remaining monster.

 

Blood spattered the grass, and the orchard was peaceful again.

 

Cloud spent a moment breathing deeply, letting the adrenaline wear off– even expecting the ambush, he’d been surprised to find the monsters working in tandem, and wound up wrong-footed because of it. Grimacing, he retrieved the remaining piece of his sword from the body of the third tycoon and reattached it to the others. 

 

He stared down at the corpse as it slowly dissolved into wisps of green light, returning to the Lifestream. It didn’t look exactly like a tycoon, under closer examination. The fur and feathers were too dark, mostly grey and black. It still bore all the hallmarks of a griffon-type monster, but the proportions were off, too – tail too long and whip-like, a build that looked too stocky to fly, and oversized white wings with an odd dent in them.

 

The eyes hadn’t been glowing, though. Which meant mako wasn’t the cause of it.   

 

“You okay?” Cloud jumped at the voice, and Angeal held up his hands disarmingly. “Whoa, easy there.”

 

“Sorry,” Cloud murmured, turning his attention back to the dissolving remains. Escaped experiments, maybe? But all the way out here?

 

“I was ready to jump in,” Angeal confessed, “But it looks like you handled it.”

 

Right. He’d forgotten the First had his back.

 

“That was an interesting trick,” he continued. “Most SOLDIERs would spend a couple of hours tracking.”

 

Cloud frowned. “Griffons are territorial and aggressive. It’s quicker to lure them to you.”

 

Angeal chuckled. “I have to say, you sure know your monsters. Learn a bit on your delivery service, did you?”

 

He shrugged, looking away. “It just happens, when you spend a lot of time on the road.” He nearly aired his suspicions about the monsters, but the words died on his tongue. It wasn’t safe to question ShinRa, not when walking this tightrope he’d set himself upon.

 

“That sword is something else, though. I can see why Genesis and Sephiroth were so impressed. Looking at it now, you wouldn’t think it can separate.” Angeal circled him, appraising First Tsurugi with interest. Cloud didn’t comment, and the First turned back towards the village. “Well, we’ve got a couple of hours to spare before Tseng wants us back at the helicopter. I’m going to stop by home. Did you want to come?”

 

Cloud shook his head. He liked Angeal well enough, but for all his politeness, he couldn’t help but feel as though he made the First uneasy. In that respect, Angeal was the most sensible out of all of them. “I’ll look around here a little longer, in case there are any other monsters.”

 

“You work too hard.” But he sounded approving. “Okay, enjoy the scenery then. See you back at the helicopter.”

 

Cloud was already slipping through the trees – this time, as silently as a wraith.

 

 

…………………………

 

 

“This call cannot be connected. Please check the number, and if you persist in having problems, bring your PHS to your nearest ShinRa Communications outlet to be serviced.”

 

Disturbed, Tseng hung up. ‘Tifa’ was disconnected too. He skipped past Angeal’s name next, then Kunsel’s, then Zack’s. Next on the list was a ‘Barrett’.

 

He dialled again, tapping his finger against the laptop resting on his knees. He sat in a long-unused office in ShinRa’s warehouse. Thankfully, due to Professor Hollander’s current use of the facilities, he had access to both the network and electricity.

 

Of course, he hadn’t originally intended to sit and investigate the contents of Cloud’s PHS then and there, but to his distress found that the models weren’t compatible – it must have been made by a third party manufacturer - so he couldn’t copy over everything for decrypting as planned. Given the tools on hand, he was left with the rather inelegant solution of copying the visible data down by hand and cold-calling each contact.

 

To his surprise, the call rang through. After a number of rings, someone finally picked up. “Barrett Wallace here. Who’s callin’?!

 

Briefly taken aback by the loud and brash baritone, Tseng was slow to reply. “Sorry to bother you Mr Wallace. I’m calling on behalf of Cloud Strife-”

 

Who?”

 

“Cloud Strife,” he repeated. 

 

“Ain’t never heard of him! Sure you got the right guy?”

 

Tseng’s fingers danced over his laptop, calling up files. Barrett Wallace, resident of Corel.  He was as blue collar as they came, and had a squeaky-clean history regarding ShinRa, with only a few business dealings on behalf of the Corel railroad.  There was no tension in his response, no hesitation - if the man didn't have an immediate recollection of Cloud Strife, then it had probably been an impersonal transaction.  The rumoured delivery service, then. 

 

"I’m not sure. Have you ever used a private delivery service?"

"What kind of question is that?  Course I have!" A beat. “…Are you one of them.. whaddya call it… hawker-types? Cause I ain’t interested in whatever shit you’re sellin’!”

 

"I’m not trying to sell you anything, Mr Wallace,” Tseng assured him. “But can you tell me if you recall the name of any of your previous delivery services?"

 

"The name?  You crazy?  We've gone through half a dozen of the bastards!"

 

This man would be of no use to him. No shadows lurked here. “I’m sorry to bother you then, Mr Wallace. Thank you for your time.” He hung up before any further response could arrive. 

 

Next name. Cid.

 

Another ring. A woman answered. Unexpected. “Good morning, ma’am, I was wondering if I could speak to Cid?”

 

She shuffled off with a meek agreement, and Tseng heard cursing in the distance. A moment later, the rustle of the phone being picked up. “Who the hell is it?” A heavy country twang coloured his accent.

 

“May I ask who it is I’m talking to?”

 

“You called me, dumbass!”

 

“I just wish to confirm I have the right person.”

 

“Who else is it gonna be? That damn bitch came and got me, didn’t she? You call Cid Highwind’s phone, you’re gonna get Cid Highwind!” 

 

"Cid Highwind?"  The astronaut from the recently cancelled space program?  He was still employed as a pilot - one of their best - but stationed out at Rocket Town, had little to do with the company these days.

 

“What are you, stupid or somethin’?”

 

“I apologise.” Tseng recovered from his shock with a professional speed – embarrassed to have slipped in the first place. “I’m calling on behalf of Cloud Strife – do you know him?”

 

“Are you shitting me? Are you wasting my time on some damn prank call?! You damn kids think you can pull one over my eyes just ‘cause I’m some washed up astronaut-”

 

“It’s a simple question,” he prodded.

 

“Course I don’t know ‘im! What the hell kinda name is Cloud Strife anyway? Stop wasting my time! I’m a busy man.” With a string of profanities and a shout of ‘SHERA!’, the line went dead.

 

Surprising, but not particularly useful. Tseng made a note, and dialled Reno next.

 

It connected to a woman – questioning revealed her to be a secretary on one of the lower floors of the ShinRa building. The number must have been reassigned then. He’d have to ask Reno about it later. The redhead had a habit of stealing other people’s PHSes and giving out wrong numbers.

 

ShinRa. He crosschecked the number through the company contacts database first, but it didn’t come up as a match with any of the current departments. He dialled.

 

“This call cannot be connected. Please check the number, and if you persist in having problems, bring your PHS to your nearest ShinRa Communications outlet to be serviced.”

 

Another dead end, then. 

 

Rude next. He knew it was Rude’s number on first glance, but dialled anyway. He could afford to talk – he was on Sector 5 guard duty at the moment.

 

“Hello?” came the deep, clipped tones.

 

“It’s Tseng,” he greeted. “Did you know that Cloud Strife has your PHS number?”

 

“The new SOLDIER?” Rude clarified.

 

“That’s right.”

 

“…No.”

 

“Can you think of any way he might have acquired it?”

 

“No.”

 

“Not even through a courier service?”

 

“No.”

 

Mysterious. “I see. Let me know if you remember anything, or can think of an explanation.”

 

“Maybe… Reno?”

 

Reno sufficed as an explanation sometimes. “I’ll ask him later. Thank you.”

 

“No problem.” Rude hung up. 

 

Tseng took a breath, closed his eyes, centred his focus, and dialled again. Shelke.

 

“This call cannot be connected. Please check the number, and if you persist in having problems-”

 

Shalua.

 

“This call cannot be connected. Please check the number-”

 

Nanaki.

 
"This call cannot be connected.  Please check-"

Reeve.

 

A ring tone at last. It was picked up almost immediately. “Reeve Tuesti, Head of Urban Development, ShinRa Incorporated speaking.”

 

So it was Tuesti. Interesting. “Hello Reeve.”

 

“Tseng!” No surprise the man could recognise him by his voice alone. Reeve Tuesti was something of a genius – the sort the Turks made use of frequently. Unfortunately he was also afflicted with a rather crippling sense of social responsibility that made him unpopular in the higher ranks of the company. “To what do I owe the pleasure?”

 

“I’m investigating the connections of a SOLDIER named Cloud Strife. Have you heard of him?”

 

“The one who’s always fighting with General Sephiroth? Through the company grapevine only, I’m afraid.”

 

“What about before he arrived at ShinRa?”

 

“Before?” Reeve sounded bewildered. “Until recently, I hadn’t heard the name before in my life.”

 

Curiouser and curiouser. Was the PHS stolen? But then, the account was current and active, and even if it were stolen the old contact information would still be valid. And who could he possibly have stolen it from who would have both Cid Highwind, Reeve Tuesti and Rude’s numbers? Never mind Barrett Wallace, who had nothing to do with any of the above. “I see. Thank you, Reeve.”

 

“Anytime.”

 

Tseng took a breath, and dialled again. Vincent.

 

“This call cannot be connected. Please-”

 

Yuffie.

 

“This call-”

 

He cut the machine off, disappointed. Yuffie had been one of the names he was most curious about, and potentially an excellent way of figuring out what Strife had been doing in Wutai in the first place, but it turned out to only be another dead end. 

 

That was the last name on the contact list. 

 

A disturbing picture. Over half the numbers he’d dialled didn’t connect at all. The ones that did connect led the people who claimed to have no association with Cloud Strife at all.

 

Idly, he flicked through the menus. Not much in the way of mail, either – it looked as though the PHS had been set up to auto-delete messages after two months.  There were several short notes, mostly from Zack and Kunsel planning training sessions or sharing gossip.  The usual company notices.  Mission dispatches.  The sort of thing you found on any SOLDIER’s PHS.

 

The spam folder, on the other hand, was unusually full. Tseng checked there next. 

 

'Treasure Princess?'

 

With a shake of his head, the Turk closed the PHS. Hang around the slums long enough, and you were bound to wind up on the mailing list of at least one adult establishment.

 

He would continue investigating – a call to the telecommunications department might prove useful – but Tseng suspected this was an exercise in futility. Without last names, they’d be stuck cold-calling potentially dozens of matches who shared a first name – a task he didn’t really have the manpower to spare for.

 

It struck him as a rather depressing state of affairs, though. A PHS filled with numbers leading nowhere.  How very sad.

 

 

…………………………

 

 

His wanderings around the dumapple orchards brought no further drama, and Cloud found himself back at the helicopter with time to spare. He made no move to go see the village proper. Walking around a place he thought to be destroyed gave him the same sort of creepy feeling as visiting Nibelheim. 

 

He got that feeling a lot, these days.

 

Tseng was already there when he arrived. “Strife. Good.” His fished through his pockets for a moment. “You left your PHS in the helicopter.” The sleek black device rested in his palm.

 

Cloud’s hand immediately groped his pocket, but the PHS wasn’t present. How did it fall out? “Thanks.” He needed to be more careful with it – it was technology from the future, after all, and the last thing he needed was attention for his PHS of all things.

 

“Your mission went well, I take?”

 

“Yeah.” Cloud didn’t elaborate. Thinking about it, a Turk visiting Banora at the same time as the appearance of unusual monsters made for a suspicious coincidence. 

 

Angeal displayed excellent timing in returning then, the sound of his heavy boots thumping through the undergrowth audible long before he entered the clearing. “Everyone’s here already?”

 

“We weren’t waiting long,” Tseng assured him. “Ready to go?”

 

“All done. Start her up,” Angeal confirmed, swinging into the helicopter. Cloud crawled in after him. “Find any more monsters?”

 

He shook his head, watching the First out the corner of his eyes. “Did you have a nice visit with your family?”

 

Angeal didn’t answer immediately, but then his face broke into a smile. It looked a little forced. “The conversation was a bit awkward, but nothing beats homemade dumapple pie.”

 

“Sorry to hear that,” he murmured, even as he wondered how any relationship with the SOLDIER First could be strained. He wasn’t friendly on the same scale as Zack, but still personable and easy-going. More importantly, he was so straight-laced and responsible it was hard to imagine him getting into an argument with anyone. 

 

A memory of a woman swam before his eyes, but the details of the conversation were hard to grasp on to. Zack had met her, just before Banora had been wiped off the map. Cloud’s gaze dropped to the floor, embarrassed by the unintentional breach into his superior’s privacy.

 

“She was just cranky that I don’t visit often enough. You know how it is.” He paused. “Or do you? Have any family living outside of Midgar?”

 

“There was only my mother, and she died a long time ago,” Cloud replied, voice flat. He didn’t count any ‘family’ he had in this new world. Couldn’t even bear to think of it.

 

“Oh. I’m sorry to have brought it up, then.” An uncomfortable silence lingered in the helicopter, broken only by the gentle breeze outside and the clicking of switches from the cockpit. “Tseng, what’s taking so long?” Angeal called up to the front.

 

“Sorry. Just checking the gauges.” The rotors roared to life – a convenient excuse not to talk any further.

 

Cloud resumed staring at the countryside, and stubbornly ignored Angeal’s contemplative gaze. 

 


Next chapter


Comments

( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
searisme
Dec. 20th, 2009 11:44 am (UTC)
First you mellow me up with all that hurt-sad, lowkey Cloud angst and then you drop this line “I’ll try to finish this quickly. So you can visit your family,”...! Because he would know about that pain... Aah, I just got something in my eye, 's all...

Ah, Tseng, you sneak you! (You Turk you?) And that scene was so very awesome. preAvalanche!Barret! Cid being rude! And Rude, being Rude ("No"). *laughs so hard* But It struck him as a rather depressing state of affairs, though. A PHS filled with numbers leading nowhere. How very sad. ...ah, Tseng, you don't know half of it. ---You really ought to take better care of you stuff, Strife.

I wonder what Tseng got out of that last conversation between Cloud and Angeal.
sinnatious
Dec. 20th, 2009 02:18 pm (UTC)
Looking back on it, it was kind of an angsty chapter, wasn't it? :S Not quite the intention! Ummm... look, Gen/Cloud! http://sinnatious.livejournal.com/76538.html?thread=1202170#t1202170

'Turk', the new synonym for 'sneak'. If this were Harry Potter fandom, Slytherin? :D
searisme
Dec. 20th, 2009 04:38 pm (UTC)
Well, it wasn't just angst. It was angst with action, with plot, with forward motion, not the usual stagnat pool of unmoving depression (sorry, I just had to write that...) one gets in fic

Meh. The interpretations of "Slytherin" are many, but I never felt that Rowlings presented them as very sneaky at all...

...Also - Shiny! Well, I'm off to have a look.
ixtey
Dec. 20th, 2009 01:38 pm (UTC)
What a sad, sad PHS Cloud has. :C Cracked up at Tseng's thinking about what 'Treasure Princess' was, though. Cid managed to make me laugh, too.

Cloud's paranoia must be wearing off. I imagined him to think of 932472649831 ways that Tseng might've done to collect and make use of the information on his PHS, since, you know, Tseng's a turk. On the other hand, maybe he was distracted by all the memories.

Ahh, and the sword separating fight scene was made of awesomeee. 8D


...*half-expecting anon people to start commenting any second now because of the rec*
sinnatious
Dec. 20th, 2009 02:21 pm (UTC)
...Says the person who was such a regular anon I had to give you a nickname. XD

Indeed, we begin to see mistakes. Mwa ha ha ha.

Can't get tired of that sword. The person at Square who thought that up deserves a million bucks. *__*
(Anonymous)
Sep. 22nd, 2016 05:39 pm (UTC)
And the funny thing is, everyone's so damn impressed that it separates into 2 parts, but little do they know that it separates into.... what, 6? I can imagine the looks on everyone's faces when some dire enough arises for THAT needing to happen. (Or maybe Genesis finds Cloud while he has them all separated for maintenance, i dunno)
i_make_rain
Dec. 20th, 2009 01:44 pm (UTC)
This whole PHS idea is just brilliant!!! Also love the phone conversations, and how we get to see glimpse of other characters.

And Cloud is still clueless... LOL.
sinnatious
Dec. 20th, 2009 02:22 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :D One way to get some of the minor characters at least a mention!
swyrel
Dec. 20th, 2009 07:26 pm (UTC)
Shame on you, Tseng! Stop stealing Cloud's PHS. >.<

That chapter just made me want to hug Cloud and never let go. I always feel so sad for the boy, but then you make me feel even worse for him. And, Tseng, it's not his fault that his PHS contacts aren't valid right now! Blame the materia...

I don't know how I really feel about Angeal anymore. I liked him in the beginning of the story, but now it seems like he might end up getting in Cloud's way later or something...I don't know how to explain it...

Anyway, what a wonderful (but very, very sad) chapter! <3
sinnatious
Dec. 21st, 2009 02:23 pm (UTC)
Keen senses you have... ;)

Sorry for the sad, hopefully the next chapter will be slightly less sad? Everything in early FFVII is so sad, whyyyyyy? :(

Edited at 2009-12-21 02:24 pm (UTC)
swyrel
Dec. 22nd, 2009 12:56 am (UTC)
I don't know! T_T *sighs* But I guess if you write a happy fic, it wouldn't really be canon. D8
(Anonymous)
Dec. 20th, 2009 08:11 pm (UTC)
Review
This is a very nice piece of work!

I like the dynamic you've got going between the characters. How Sepheroth is thinking there's more to Cloud than meets the eye, how Angeal and Genesis are curious of him, and how Cloud is more of a mentor to Zack (as well as Kunsel) than the other way around.

I ownder what'll happen when the "real" Cloud of that time comes into play. I look forward to the next installment! Happy holidays :)
sinnatious
Dec. 21st, 2009 02:25 pm (UTC)
Re: Review
(There was a double of this I deleted, fyi). Thank you anon!
firedraygon97
Dec. 20th, 2009 08:31 pm (UTC)
I wasn't expecting an update today for this fic! I figured you'd be working on your giftfic instead. XP

Guuh, first half was sad. ;__; Poor Cloud, even though Nibelheim the first time around wasn't a great experience for him, what with all the bullying, it's still home.

He brushed past Tseng, boarded the helicopter, and a few minutes later the engine roared to life

There! This is when he was pick-pocketed, no? :O Cloud needs to be on higher alert around these Turks. I mean, he did manage to avoid getting robbed in the slums, but I guess his guard was down this time? XP

And Tseng! Haha, if only he followed that Treasure Princess lead! As a Turk he should know better than to dismiss clues. I am so amused that he thinks Yuffie's pseudonym belongs to an adult establishment. XDD

The awkward convo at the end was also depressing, but I like how Tseng was caught eavesdropping by Angeal. They're all so curious! Haha, especially the fangirls Cloud has accumulated. >D Can't wait until someone asks for his autograph.
sinnatious
Dec. 21st, 2009 02:28 pm (UTC)
Giftfic is certainly keeping me busy (And TezRyo revival too, ack, why must everything come at once) but I'm doing that around the regular schedule. ^_^

Sharp! That is indeed when it happened. You might have levelled up above inexperienced slum kids, Cloud, but you still have to watch out for sneaky Turks! (Especially ones equipped with Steal materia? :D)

XD I'm tempted to leave all the fanclub stuff to you. You do a fabulous job of it. *_*
demon_vampirate
Dec. 20th, 2009 08:37 pm (UTC)
Oh I just want to go run and give Cloud a hug now...
*runs hand through own spiky hair* ...yeah... some of us get spikes unintentionally and can't get rid of them... No matter how hard we beat them with a brush and hair-wet stuff... (It's just not worth it to un-spike it with gel, though.)

Awwwwww Angeal... I want you to know that whole fake-monster-mission-thing had me freaking out the entire chapter.

(And "memories" by Genesis Gackt didn't help my trying-not-to-angst.)
Wonderful chapter, I look forward to the next update!
sinnatious
Dec. 21st, 2009 02:30 pm (UTC)
By the sounds of it, we have the great makings of a 'Give Cloud a Hug' Foundation! :D Glad you enjoyed it, next chapter should (real life being willing) turn up on Wednesday sometime.

Oh ho, Gackt soundtrack while reading the fic! Interesting idea! I have me some new writing music!
demon_vampirate
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:15 am (UTC)
YES.

Really? *_*♥
I feel special♥
aori_tsuki
Dec. 22nd, 2009 01:11 am (UTC)
I swear, you single-handedly brought me back to the FFVII fandom ♥ Oh gen fics, why can't you be more abundant.

Ffff, only if you knew who ShinRa is Tseng, then you'd be even more suspicious.
sinnatious
Dec. 22nd, 2009 01:53 pm (UTC)
♥ Considering I left the fandom myself and was dragged back by all the lovely time travel stories, this makes me happy.
(Anonymous)
Dec. 22nd, 2009 12:00 pm (UTC)
So good!

I keep coming back to check when you've updated, and it's always so good! I can't wait until you've finished.

Though I'm desperately hoping you DON'T finish any time soon, I'm hoping to make a fan art for you before it ends, I just need to gain the skills to do it with!
sinnatious
Dec. 22nd, 2009 01:56 pm (UTC)
Thank you! There's going to be at least thirty chapters, if that helps? Oooo, fanarts! *___* Good luck with it!
caterfree10
Jan. 4th, 2012 01:36 am (UTC)
Oh snap, Turks on the case y'all. x3 Tseng being all cool and collected even in the face of Barret and Cid is delightful. <3

Hrm, not much else I can think of. :Va ON TO THE NEXT CHAPTER THEN! o7
(Anonymous)
Jan. 6th, 2013 03:23 am (UTC)
...Poor Shera.

Also, I never thought about it before, but how would Nanaki use a phone? I mean, carefully, I guess! XD But the logistics...!
sinnatious
Jan. 6th, 2013 12:28 pm (UTC)
Headset!

I would assume though that Nanaki's number is actually a number to one of the buildings in Cosmo Canyon. They'd have to have a means of contacting him, after all.
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