In the Deepest Part of Love



Another CloudxTifa fic! ^___^ I don't care what other people say. I firmly believe that Cloud belongs with Tifa. Tifa loves Cloud and he obviously cares for her as well. There is no such thing as Cloud and Aeris for all I care. =P Cloud is with Tifa, Zack is with Aeris. Clear? =)

This chapter has some violence in it, so be warned!!!




IT'S CLOUD X TIFA FOREVER!!!!




Uspoken Words~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


A loud burst jolted Cloud from his drooping eyes and he straightened quickly. Light flowed through the Gondola which he was seated in as fireworks danced against the dark night. Colorful beams streaked through the Golden Saucer without hesitation whether it was welcomed or not. Cloud rubbed his eyes and stifled a yawn, hoping that the young woman across from his did not notice.

She is so beautiful, he thought, taking in her womanly figure and flawless face. Perfectly shaped eyes with long, brown hair...A perfect body and caring nature...Cloud couldn't imagine how such a lovely speciman could possibly exist, yet it sits in front of him. He longed to hold that figure to his body and never release it. It is too much of a waste to leave it alone, Cloud thought without taking his eyes off the silent individual before him.

Tifa did not notice the eyes that gazed upon her. She was blinded by the fireworks and the thoughts that ran through her mind.

It was late to ask Cloud out, she thought, thinking how tired Cloud must have been throughout the whole day. But I want to tell him. I can't keep it in me much longer. But what if it is not the right time? What if he rejects me? I can not live with the pain. I...I don't know...Tifa shook her head.

Cloud noticed the movement and without thinking, asked: "Tifa, what's wrong?"

The sound of his voice jerked Tifa into reality. She tore her eyes away from the fireworks and stared at Cloud, trying to fix her attention upon her blue-eyed childhood friend. She shook her head again. "What, Cloud?" she asked.

"What's wrong?"

"Oh...." Tifa looked away from his gaze and concentrated on the floor. "Nothing, Cloud....I mean...I'm....I'm sorry that I dragged you out here. You must have been really tired and all...."

"It's nothing at all, Tifa," said Cloud with a sigh and leaned back against the Gondola. He didn't take his eyes off Tifa as he breathed out softly. "I don't mind the Gondola ride. It's a great way to look around the Golden Saucer. You don't wanna miss out on the sights, do ya, Tifa?"

"Oh...um...guess not..." Avoiding Cloud's eyes, Tifa looked out the window, but she felt the blue eyes watching her.

There's something wrong...Cloud thought. She's probably trying to tell me something...is it something about our relationship? She is my childhood friend and very caring to me....does she want our friendship to go farther...?

"Oh! Look, Cloud!" Tifa exclaimed.

Cloud looked out the window and watched as the Gondola pass by the Chocobo track and Chocobos racing by.

I don't know...he thought. But Tifa may reveal it soon enough.

From the corner of her eyes, Tifa notice Cloud deep in his thoughts. He merely watched the activities outside of the Gondola as he sat there writing thoughts in his head.

I *have* to tell him, thought Tifa. It might be now or never. Our mission is so dangerous....we can lose each others any day at any time. I don't want to lose any chances. But what if....what if he isn't interested? What if he feels so repulsed by the idea that he doesn't want me near him anymore? I don't ever want that to happen.
The Gondola trailed by the coaster, where sparkling lights and shimmering objects waited to by shattered into thousands of pieces of blinking light. One particular object was shattered at that moment and its remains made its way to the ground like the trail of glitter left behind from a shooting star.

"It's so pretty." Tifa breathed.

It shoudn't be so hard, Tifa continued to think. Is it harder when one is afraid to face the truth? But what if the truth is not so hard to bear? What if the truth is actually wonderful to hear? I am lying almost everyday saying that I feel nothing towards Cloud only as a childhood friend. I know I feel much more than that. It is only that everyone else does not know...but I want only one person to know...and he is sitting across from me...maybe even waiting for my answer...
Tifa watched Cloud as he stared out the window of the Gondola and felt her heart skip a beat. He is so....beautiful, she thought. She wondered if there were even girls that were envious of Cloud's good looks. His body so fit and muscular...His voice ever so manly and beautiful. But what attracted Tifa the most were his eyes....the deep shade of blue with the streaks of yellow glow of Mako. Perfectly shaped with intelligence and bravery etched in...

"It's beautiful..." Tifa heard herself mutter out loud.

"Hmmm?" said Cloud, turning from the window and noticed Tifa watching him.

"Oh! Umm..." stammered Tifa, a faint tint of red rising upon her cheeks. "Nothing...."

"No, Tifa," said Cloud, finally abandoning his position against the Gondola and leaned toward Tifa, which surprised her to look at him. "I know you have something to say. Do you...do you want to tell me now? I'm afraid that the Gondola ride is almost over...I want to know what you want to say to me." He finished with a nod of his head.

Tifa took a deep breath. He saw right through me, she thought. "Cloud...." Tifa started, fidgeting with her hands as she leaned a bit closer to Cloud. It is time.

"Yes, Tifa?"

"I....I want to tell you something...." Tifa focused on the hands as she spoke, fearing that she would lose her courage any moment.

"I'm hear to listen to you, Tifa."

Damn, this is so hard! Tifa thought, furious with herself. "I think Aeris can say it easier than I can," she said softly.

"I wouldn't care what Aeris would say even if she asked me to sleep with her." Cloud shook his head, trying to rid himself of that awful experience earlier. Aeris had claimed to be frightened and wanted her 'bodyguard' literally close to her. For one thing, Cloud never really agreed to be her bodyguard and he would rather sleep with Don than with her. "Tifa...I only want to listen to you."

Tifa, too, thought for a moment of the earlier incident. She and Cloud were in discussion when Aeris stepped in and claimed that she was afraid of sleeping by herself and wanted Cloud to be with her. Not only that, but *in-her-bed-next-to-her*. Tifa had tensed in that moment as Cloud struggled for the right words. Cloud obviously did not want to be involved in it yet Aeris continued to pelt him with whimpers and protests. Tifa finally ended the nonsense with herself sleeping next to Aeris.

Aeris...thought Tifa with a slight anger flaming at the thought of that name. No, not now. Now is not the time. I will not allow Aeris to interfere again. Tifa looked up into Cloud's eyes and was absorbed by the blue pool that swam there. I am going to forget her...I am going to forget everything....I am going to act on my emotions....

"Cloud...." said Tifa reached over for Cloud's hands. "I...I want to tell you this..." She reached his hands and held it in her own as Cloud watched silently. Seeing that he did not object, Tifa continued. "I want to tell you now, because I fear that after this, I would never have the chance to let you know." His hands felt so warm...Tifa felt it even through her gloves. It was the right moment...I will not give up...."Cloud....I....I........I lo-"

CRRRRRPPPPP!!!!!

The sudden jolt stopped Tifa in her mid-sentence. Both were suddenly aware that the Gondola had stopped moving.

No! thought Tifa in despair, tears creeping into her eyes. No! Nothing can interfere...again!

"Cloud!" Tifa cried. Cloud immediately was drawn back to Tifa. "I have to say this!" Tifa continued to say, clutching his hands tightly in hers. The moment was not going to last...she can not afford to linger...."Cloud....I love-"

"Well, well!" exclaimed a cheerful voice as the door of the Gondola was swung wide open. "Had a fun ride?"

The man stopped with his smile frozen on his face as he faced Cloud and Tifa holding hands. His eyes immediately caught the pain and rage that was etched into Tifa's face and the tears of frustration that hung by a eyelash. Uh-oh, he thought.

"I'm...I'm sorry...." he stammered, the smile disappearing quickly from his face and bowing low. "I'm terribly sorry...It's just that the ride is over and I didn't know....that....umm....." He bowed again and stepped aside, his face red from embarassment.

"It's alright," said Cloud to the man, feeling sorry how the man felt at the moment. He turned to Tifa and was about to speak but saw the hurt painted upon her face. "Ti..fa...?" He felt pressure on his hands and noticed Tifa was still holding them.

Tifa didn't hear him as she fought tears and concentrated hard on her gloves which held Cloud's hands. I was so close! she thought in mixed feelings of deep sorrow and regret and fury. Her insides battled with each others as she tried not to lose her focus. She felt her hands begin to tremble when Cloud had loosened one hand and shook her with it.

"Tifa?" Cloud said, concern in his voice. "Tifa, are you alright?"

Tifa took a deep breath. It's not over yet....she told herself. There's always another chance....

"I'm....I'm alright...." she said, finally releasing Cloud. She rose and made her way out and didn't look at the man as she walked out of the Gondola with Cloud following behind.

"Oh, by the way, Tifa," said Cloud after they walked a short distance, "what were you trying to say?"

A moment of regret and sadness overtook Tifa. She did not feel the courage she had felt earlier. I hope that it will return sometime soon, she thought. I will need that courage again....but I don't feel it at this moment...

"Nothing, Cloud," said Tifa, her voice thick with sorrow. "Nothing....at all..."


* * *


Cloud slowly stepped into his room and quietly closed the door. Soundlessly he propped his buster sword against the wall as he made his way toward the bed and sat down with a hand buried in his hair.

She said....love....but who? Me? he thought. He ran his hand through his hair completely and fell back onto the bed. He stared up at the wall which flickered light colors that reflected from outside. He concentrated on it for a moment before closing his eyes to block out the view.

Did she mean to say she loved me? Cloud thought in complete silence. Or did she mean to say she loved someone else? But who else is there that she would love? Maybe she didn't mean a person. But what?

Cloud's thoughts reeled back to how Tifa had reacted in the Gondola. He sighed in recognition.

She would not have acted that way only to tell me something unimportant, he thought. I know how Tifa is...she is strong, but not when it comes to emotional moments...she was trying to tell me....

Cloud shifted his position and laid with his two arms behind his head. He opened his eyes again and looked up at the wall above as it flickered again with many colors. A image of Tifa flickered throught the light and a tiny smile crept up to the corner of Cloud's lips.

I woulda said the same Tifa.....



* * *


Unbeknownst to Cloud, across the hall from him, Tifa stood with her back to the door, eyes closed and soft breathing. Her arms laid dangling at her sides as her head was propped up against the door and her mouth open to take in the cool air of the night.

Idiot! she thought furiously to herself. I am such an idiot! I was so close....why did the ride had to end so soon? Or was it? Was it that I took too much time? Is it my own fault for lingering through all that valuable time? I am such a fool...a fool!

Before she could control herself, Tifa straightened and leaped. She was just about to ram her fist into the bed in anger and frustration when she saw the lump that came from underneath the sheets. Tifa stopped just in time and caught herself as the figure in the bed gave a small groan and shuffled to a new position.

Aeris...thought Tifa. She looked at Aeris for a moment before turning away and squeezing her eyes shut. I don't want to see her...Tifa thought with a sense of weariness. She seems to almost bring me pain. How can she be my best friend while she plays with my feelings?

A small breeze suddenly swept through the room and caressed Tifa softly as it passed her. Forgetting her thoughts, Tifa turned and saw the opened window and the stars that watched her through it.

Quietly Tifa made her way through the room, being extra careful not to wake Aeris. Tifa pulled back the curtains more and looked up at the star-filled sky. A sudden feeling of remembrance came over Tifa as she watched the stars twinkle.

That's right...Tifa nodded to herself. That was where our promise was made....under a starry sky...

Tifa seated herself onto the floor where her arms laid on the windowsill. She laid her head on her arms and looked up as the stars twinkled as though they were laughing.

Cloud...years of missing you and times of aching when you weren't near...I want to tell you...Why is it so hard? Do I fear that you will not accept me? But I must tell you...I must be strong...Stars, please give me that strengh. You watched me make that promise that night. You know how I feel. Please give me the strength...I know I can tell him sometime soon...

"Please give me the strengh," Tifa whispered aloud without knowing.

She did notice she had spoke out loud, nor did she notice the tear that finally escaped from her eyelashes and was making its way down her cheek. Another followed soon after.



* * *



Cloud and the group trudged through the grassy plains as they neared the town of Nibelheim.

Everyone appeared well rested and in good mood, with the exception of Cloud and Tifa. Everyone noticed the sudden change of behavior in both since their stay at the Golden Saucer the night before. Tifa was unusually quiet and Cloud seemed to have distanced himself even further than usual.

Barrett and Cid decided to ignore it and kept conversation going at ease. RedXIII listened with occasional nods or agreements. Vincent didn't bother at all with the conversation besides a few remarks to leave him alone. Yuffie took the opportunity to voice her opinions, much to the annoyance to the others. Only Aeris tried to converse with Tifa, but after several subjects, she finally decided to drop the attempt.

She's probably very tired, Aeris thought as she remembered finding Tifa out of bed and asleep by the window. Cloud must be tired as well...he's not talking much...his room was the closest to the fireworks last night. He must have been awakened many times last night. Aeris trailed her eyes to the lone individual walking ahead. I should go to him.

Cloud did not notice the activities of the group as his eyes surveyed across the grassy field. Nibelhiem was in close distance. It wouldn't take more than half an hour to arrive there, he thought. Maybe if we stopped there, Tifa would be able to tell me what she wanted to say last night. I'm sure that the group won't mind a rest since we have walked for a while. All I need is a little privacy-

"Cloud!" exclaimed a cheerful, feminine voice from behind him. Cloud nearly jumped from surprise as Aeris appeared with a large smile on her face.

"Why are you so awfully quiet today?" asked Aeris cheerfully. "You usually talk to me or something." She folded her arms behind her back and leaned toward Cloud with a goofy smile on her face. "You're not feeling well?"

"Oh, um...just tired," said Cloud, leaning back away from Aeris. "I'll be fine in a while....you know...the fireworks were kinda loud last night. It kept me from sleeping."

"Oh, I see," replied Aeris. She turned around and glanced at Nibelheim. "We're pretty close. You can rest there once we've arrived."

I want you all to rest while I talk to Tifa, Cloud thought. "I know." He turned around to find Tifa and saw her looking away with a distant look in her eyes.

"Hey, Tifa!" he called.

"Wh...What?" Tifa turned as Cloud made his way over.

"I...I want to know what you wanted to say last night," said Cloud as he stopped before her.

Tifa was caught off guard by his words. What...? she thought. Why now?

She looked behind Cloud and saw Aeris, who was still surveying the land. Oh, I see....thought Tifa.

"Cloud...you know..." she started and paused. "I can tell you later....I mean...right now doesn't seem good and-"

Tifa was interrupted from a sudden scream from Aeris. Cloud immediately whipped around as Tifa and the group went on guard and forgot the conversations.

"What's wrong?" asked Cloud quickly. Even before Aeris pointed he saw just as he turned around.

Not a far distance away, was a huge monster. It was well over 12 feet tall and bore huge claws on both arms. It flesh was a dirty white and a horrid stench came from it. The eyes seemed sunken into the slots and a carnivorous mouth gleamed with large fangs. Its body was hunched over as walked unsteadily as it made its way toward the group.

"Everyone, be careful!" shouted Cloud as he grabbed his buster sword from his back and held it tightly in both hands. He heard Tifa rush to his side as she prepared into her fighting stance and RedXIII's growl behind him. From the corner of his eye he saw Vincent whip out a sniper and Yuffie steadying her dangerous, over-sized boomerang. The thump of Cid's spear and the clicking sounds of Barrett's arm told Cloud that they were ready. He knew immediately that Aeris was farthest in the back and was needed only for healing.

As the monster neared, Cloud shrank back from the sudden recognition of the creature. To his horror, it was exactly similar to the speciman he had seen in the Mako reactor in Nibelheim with Sephiroth those years ago. Those creatures that Sephiroth had said were once human and were exposed to high levels of Mako which mutated them.

Did it escape? Cloud thought in bewilderment. His thoughts were cut short when the monster neared enough and swung at him.

Cloud ducked quickly as the others did the same. A single, loud shot rang out and the monster cried out in pain. It recovered quickly and dove for Vincent, who leaped to safety as Yuffie threw a shurikan to catch its attention. It swung at her automatically and missed as its claw struck the ground. A huge collection of dust rose and engulfed it as Yuffie ran from it coughing. Cid quickly took the opportunity and jabbed his spear deep into the pale white flesh. The monster reared up in pain and Barrett began to pelt it with bullets. Cloud came up from behind and slashed his sword upon its back while Tifa leaped into the air and swung hard with her leg and knocked the monster across the head.

Enraged, the monster kicked and lashed out and managed to swing a leg at Cid. Cid felt the burst of pain that was quick to inflict on him as he and his spear flew a few feet away.

"You A$$H0L3!!!" shouted Barrettt and let out a long stream of bullets.

"Cid!" cried Aeris. She rushed over and kneeled over him. Quickly she casted heal and a potion on him. Cid did not move and Aeris felt slight panic. "Cid!" she shouted and shook the pilot.

Cid groaned. "Shera...." he muttered. "Where are my cigarettes....?"

Behind them, the battle raged on. Yuffie was suddenly cuffed in the stomach and was sent flying back into Vincent. He caught her, but both fell to the ground from the impact. RedXIII leaped onto the monster and latched his massive jaws onto its neck. The monster struggled and roared and finally grabbed the enigma from its throat.

"RedXIII!" shouted Cloud. He ran with his sword upraised, but the monster suddenly tossed RedXIII at him. Caught off guard, Cloud saw the form of red fur crash into him and sent him flying back several feet, dropping the buster sword.

"Cloud!" he heard Tifa shout.

He landed hard onto the ground dust settled over him. RedXIII landed a couple of feet away and did not get up. Groaning, Cloud propped himself up and winced at the pain that shot up his leg. Did I break it? he thought and shook his head. A growl from above caught his attention. He slowly looked up and looked into the sunken eyes of the monster.

Oh...sh**...

Cloud looked rapidly around for his buster sword and found it too far to reach. His eyes gave a hint of fear as he moved back from the monster. He heard the rapid fire of Barrett's gun, but the monster paid no heed of the bullets which sunk into its flesh. The monster growled again and bared its long fangs and raised a claw.

Cloud looked at it in fear and he knew that he would not be able to escape. The claw rose far behind the monster as it gathered strength. Immediately it swung from behind, picking up faster and faster speed. Cloud took in a breath of fear and squeezed his eyes tightly shut. He was dimly aware of Barrett and the others shouting as he waited for the impact. He heard the swoosh and timed the moment when he would be struck and all would be over and all would be-

SSCRRNNN!!!

The flesh was torn open. The claws sunk in deep. The blood splattered all over. A breath was cut short. Everyone stopped shouting.

Cloud had his eyes squeezed tightly together. The pain...he waited and waited...when he felt a warm drop upon his hand. Cloud's eyebrows knitted in confusion. He didn't feel pain, how was he bleeding? Cautiously he opened his eyes, then snapped it open at the horror before him.

Tifa was kneeling before him on her knees and arms. Her head was directly above his and her eyes were closed in excruciating pain and her mouth was opened in a slight pant. Behind her, a claw was sunk deep into her back and tore her flesh from the bone. Blood poured from the wound and trickled down her body and dripped off in a fast-paced, rhythmic pattern.

Tifa let out a shallow, broken breath and opened her eyes and saw Cloud staring at her.

"C...Cloud..." she breathed slowly and broke into a weak smile. "I'm...glad...that you're alright..."

"Tifa..." whispered Cloud, staring into the ruby eyes. Pain and relief shown there...Cloud was unsure which feeling was stronger..."Why did you...."

Tifa slowly shook her head. The effort nearly took all her strength. "No...Cloud," she whispered, looking at the blue eyes, "I wanted...to....because I....AHH!" Tifa gave a cry of pain as the monster ripped its claw from Tifa, taking flesh and blood with it.

Tifa's face scrunched up in pain as she reared up for a moment, but suddenly relaxed as she fell forward onto Cloud.

"Tifa....?" whispered Cloud, catching Tifa and holding onto the bloody figure. "Tifa..?" There was no answer.

Tifa...no.....thought Cloud in despair. Don't leave me...no......

A roar from above jerked Cloud back to the battle. Cloud looked up at the monster and all he felt at that moment was a sudden feeling of rage and hatred. He hated it...Shinra..SOLDIER...Sephiroth...Mako reactors....Hated it. The anger overtook him and Cloud had never felt such pure rage and resentment in his life. His eyes glowed a deep yellow from the Mako and a heat filled his body that left him nearly panting. His muscles tensed in such a way that it nearly ached as his blood boiled like magma that yearned to explode. Anger....churning...boiling....Cloud could not control it.

He laid Tifa aside and raced to his buster sword, the pain in his leg long forgotten. He snatched it up and faced the monster with a glare that left the monster hesitant to attack. With a loud shout, Cloud attacked.

The monster raised a claw to block it, but Cloud sliced through as though nothing was there. He swung at the other claw and saw the blood that stained it....blood...Tifa's blood....Cloud shouted in a feeling of mixed despair and anger. His eyes gleamed in vengence as he sliced through the other claw. The monster stepped back; it had lost its true weapons. It shrank back in fear and knew that it must escape. Cloud never gave it a chance.

As soon as the claw had struck the ground, Cloud had attacked again. He sliced the entire arm off and leaped off the ground as soon as he touched it to do the same to the other. The monster can only cry out helplessly as Cloud began to hack ruthlessly at its body. The blade moved too fast for any of them to see the actions going on. All they could see was the countless cuts and gashes that appeared so quickly.

Finally Cloud leaped high into the air. The monster only saw one last thing before its doom...the Mako eyes. It gleamed and shown such a threat and vengence and the aura that came from it left it to shudder. The eyes...there was no mercy or anything close to compassion and the monster knew that it can never escape. It knew what it had seen. It had seen the eyes of one that no one should come across and one that possess the strength and courage that all had forgotten how to speak of....

The blade swished through with pure ease. The cold blade sliced through and finally contacted with the ground. Both halves of the monster fell to the ground without moving. All become silent. Barrett and the others could only stare at what they had just seen. They knew that for the rest of their days, they can never live to forget that moment...

The tip of the blade touched the ground as the other arm fell to Cloud's side. He panted slowly as the glow slowly faded from his eyes. He felt his body slowly residing back from the raging storm as he breathed deeply.

A while later, the blade dropped to the ground. Cloud left it as he walked his way toward Tifa. Slowly he brought his eyes to face her, and as he did, he dropped down onto his knees.

Tifa....Cloud thought. He reached over and slowly brought the young woman into his arms. His motions were slow and clumsy as he hugged Tifa to him. He felt his eyes began to smart...a feeling he hadn't felt for a long time...

"Tifa..." whispered Cloud, his voice hoarse and short.

A small stirring surprised him. "Cl...oud...?" said a barely audible voice.

His eyes widened. "Tifa!" he cried and held her so that she faced him. "Tifa! You're alive!"

Slowly her eyes opened. "Cloud..." she breathed. It took a great effort for her to smile. "You...you're alive....I'm so...happy..."

"You'll be alright! You'll be alright!" said Cloud nearly hysterically. Tears formed in his eyes and streaked down his face. A droplet fell from his face and onto Tifa's hand. "You can't leave me!"

"Cloud....you're crying..." Tifa reached up with a trembling hand and held Cloud's face. "You're...crying...for me?"

"Tifa...." Cloud reached and held Tifa's hand. "Please...save your strength....You'll be fine."

"No..." Tifa coughed up a blood made a small stream down her chin. Cloud quickly wiped it away. "No...Cloud...I won't make it this time..."

"No! Tifa...you're strong, remember? You won't give up! You can't!"

"Cloud..." Tifa closed her eyes for a moment and opened them again. "I'm just glad...that I have a chance...to see you...one last time...."

"Tifa...you can't leave me...." Cloud said in a plead. He held her tighter.

"Cloud..." Tifa's vision blurred from tears. It slid down her face as Cloud wiped them away. "I wish...I can be with you...like that Gondola ride...again...."

"We can!" cried Cloud, tears streaming down his face. "And we will! I will take you everywhere you want and we can be together! We will go to so many places and have so much fun together! I won't let anything hurt you..." His voice ended in a small sob.

Tifa gave a small sigh as pools formed in her ruby eyes. "You don't know...how happy you've made me...Cloud...."

"I might know...because you have endlessly made me so happy...."

Tifa nodded slowly and pressed her hand against Cloud's face and looked one last time at those blue eyes of the man she loved for so long. "Cloud..." she breathed out and took her last breath. "I just want you to know.....that for a very long time..........I love you....Cloud...." Tifa's eyes slowly closed and the ruby eyes were gone.

"Ti....fa....?" said Cloud, lifting Tifa closer to him. She did not respond, nor did she take another breath. "Tifa, please wake up..." The pools in Cloud's eyes filled far too much and streamed over and slid down his face. "Tifa? Tifa...please...I'm begging you....Tifa....." The pain wracked through Cloud's body and became too unbearable.

"TIFAAAAA.....NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!" Cloud shouted up to the sky.

Nearby animals scampered away quickly and quickly burrowed themselves. The group flinched at the sudden outburst. Somewhere closeby, the residents of Nibelheim heard the shout and paused at their work.

"Tifa..." whispered Cloud and allowed the emotions to overcome him as he clutched Tifa tightly and buried his face into her hair.

"I love you....I love you....I love you....I love you....." he continued to chant without stopping.

No one stepped in, no one said a word, no one moved...All watched as Cloud Stife, the leader of AVALANCHE, ex-member of SOLDIER, and protector of the planet, hold on to his love and life as he sobbed and sobbed until he thought his heart would break....





A/N: Sad, wasn't it? =( Don't worry, things will become better! I'm a hardcore CloudxTifa fan so things *will* turn out better! ^_^ Please R+R!