|WriterZilch (writerzilch) wrote in kinkfest,|
@ 2007-09-21 09:31:00
|Entry tags:||a: writerzilch, f: final fantasy vii, p: aeris/cloud, september 21|
[fic] "The Flowers in Your Dreams", FFVII (Cloud/Aeris)
Title: The Flowers in Your Dreams
Rating: R for non-graphic sex
Warnings: Spoilers for FF7 (if it can even be called a spoiler, heh), character death
Summary: Somewhere, distantly, Cloud knew he was dreaming.
A/N: I'm pleased with how this came out. I hope to gods it's not too ridiculously woobie. XD;
Tifa watched thoughtfully as Cloud tossed in his sleep for the third night in a row. It was better than not sleeping at all, she supposed; the first two nights he'd simply stared off into space, unable to even close his eyes. Probably he was seeing her face every time that he tried.
Her heart went out to him. Aeris' death had hit them all hard, and everyone was dealing with it in their own ways. Yuffie had cried, long and heartbroken, even though she'd only known Aeris for a little while. Tifa herself felt wounded, as if she'd taken a blow to the chest, and now as she watched over Cloud she thought, If I was ever jealous of you, I'm sorry. I didn't really mean it. I wish you weren't gone.
Cloud moaned in his sleep, eyelids fluttering fitfully. Tifa pulled the blankets tighter around him and wished there was something she could do.
I let her die. I let her die. I let her die.
Somewhere, distantly, Cloud knew he was dreaming. The ground beneath his feet was cracked and grey, and all around him the world was misty-white and indistinct. So far as he could tell, all directions were the same, so he simply sat down right where he was and rocked with the terrible echo of his thoughts.
I let her...
The mist drifted as a barely-noticeable breeze stirred it like a hand. It took a few moments for Cloud to notice a new detail: the scent of flowers, faint but there. He raised his head.
There, up ahead. The mist was thinner, though only just. A single flower dragged its way out of the dead, cracked ground, small but determined, its sunny face turned toward him, as though it were waiting to be seen. It was one of hers.
Cloud was tempted to ignore it. The sight of it made his heart squeeze painfully till there was almost no breathing around it, but as he watched the mist stirred again, revealing another flower a ways beyond the first one. He squinted-- yes, and there was another one past that, indistinct but obviously there, beckoning like a painted arrow that said "THIS WAY".
There was nothing else to do, really, so Cloud got to his feet and followed.
The line of flowers grew as he walked until they were a path, a narrow carpet of butter-yellow and bright green that meandered ever forward into the mist. The path widened and widened until it was a road, then a river, and then a sea of flowers, waving gently in every direction as far as he could see until they were hidden again by the fog.
"I don't know what to do." It startled him to hear his own voice, to realize he'd spoken aloud.
"Of course you do." That voice, warm like the sun. "You've been doing it. Just keep putting one foot forward, and then the other."
He was almost too afraid to turn around, but he did it anyway. She was there, looking warm and alive, surrounded by flowers whose faces turned to her as though she were a light.
Aeris. He couldn't even say her name. It hurt too much.
Instead he said, "I'm dreaming this, aren't I?"
"You are! Mostly, anyway. And you really ought to stop. You're never going to get any proper sleep this way."
"It doesn't matter if I sleep." He wanted to explain that he deserved the exhaustion, the nightmares, all of it, but the words wouldn't come.
"Stubborn as always."
He could smell her-- that sweet combination of new blossoms and brown sugar, familiar and aching. Her bangs moved gently in a breeze he couldn't feel. I want to touch her.
"Why don't you, then?"
It was a dream, so it made sense that she could hear. He was moving before he even realized it, a tentative hand reaching out to touch her cheek. She nuzzled into it like a cat, eyes drifting shut. "Cloud."
There were so many things he wanted to say, but his heart was pounding and he couldn't seem to voice any of them. When Aeris opened her eyes again they were soft-green and knowing as rain. Maybe I don't need to say anything. When her arms came up to circle him Cloud sank into the embrace, grateful and despairing and thrilled and ashamed.
They sank down on the bed of flowers, and Cloud buried his face in the warm crook of her neck. Distantly he realized he was shaking, that he couldn't stop, and when his lips brushed her throat Aeris made a sound, a soft "Oh," that set his heart to hammering even harder.
"It's okay," she whispered in his ear.
It wasn't okay, and maybe it never would be. Cloud felt raw inside, like he was bleeding out from a wound he couldn't see. But Aeris was so sweet, tipping her head back, skin warm and smooth under his lips, and Cloud found that for now, he could ignore it. When he reached the buttons on the front of her dress Aeris made a satisfied sound, almost a purr, and said "Go on."
Her breasts were so soft, rosy and perfect. Her ribs, her belly, exquisite and right. Cloud paused, looked up at her, felt more than unworthy. "I want to do this for you."
She smiled like sunshine. "Please."
She was salt-sweet here, like honey and teardrops, like nectar and rain. The slide of his tongue made her arch and gasp, and when she cried out at the end it was on the music of his name.
She stroked his hair after, drowsy and content. "It's time for you to go, Cloud," she said, and Cloud thought No, not yet. Let me stay a while longer. Just a little longer.
Her laugh was rueful. "If you stay much longer, I won't want to let you go. That would be bad. Go back to your friends, Cloud. They still need you."
The mist was closing in, chilling his skin, obscuring his vision. "Wait--"
"Go back to the world, Cloud. And don't worry. I'll tell him you said 'hi'."
"...Tell him I said hi..."
Wakefulness rushed in with rude haste. Cloud blinked and squinted, and the blur above him materialized into an exhausted-looking Tifa.
He felt stiff and sore. "What time is it?"
Tifa sat back on her heels. "Just a little after dawn. Cloud, are you alright? You were having some sort of dream."
Cloud rubbed his eyes and tried to recall, but could only dredge up an impression of mist and loneliness. No, there'd been something else, too... a field of flowers? Warmth? The dream tattered like smoke the harder he tried to grasp at it.
"I'm fine." Tifa looked so worried, and guilt pricked at him. "It's okay, Tifa. Really."
She looked doubtful.
Cloud offered her a weak smile. "We should get going. We have a lot of ground to cover today."
She nodded, hesitantly, but she seemed ready to believe him. Cloud threw back the blankets and cast around for his boots--
--And froze. There, wound in the laces, lay the crushed remnants of a flower, butter-yellow, face turned toward him as if waiting to be seen.