Living Dead

Rating: PG
Pairing: Zidane/Kuja
Disclaimer: I don't own Final Fantasy IX, or any of the places and characters mentioned in that game or this piece of fanfiction. No profit is being made, I write for free.

This is, as always, a oneshot.

When he found Kuja's body, angled and torn, laying on a landscape that seemed detached from whatever reality was convincing at the time, Zidane didn't expect anything but a mild, buzzing annoyance. Kuja's skin, always so white, was laced with cold and heat. The changes in temperature had webbed his outside with tiny fractures and cracks; the whole of Kuja's skin seemed to be dusted with some fine powder, whiter, lighter than snow.

He expected no more than a distant pulse through his thick gloves, for hitching breaths to snake past Kuja's lips and into the frigid air. Zidane's fingers bunched in his thin clothing, hard arms lifting the soft body from the ground in a shower of fractured dreams, tiny pieces of the world's memory falling from Kuja's hands and drifting to the ground. But Zidane's skin whirred into life from a brush of fur, Kuja's longer tail drifting across his arm and exciting the nerves deeply embedded, tiny shocks of feeling shooting through skin numbed by magic, cold, gnawing fatigue.

It would have been a triumph, if it weren't so desperately sad: Kuja, helpless, dependant on the rebellious slave who had caused his fall. From saving his planet to destruction, destruction to an almost death, Zidane had expected Kuja to be cold, proud, his kisses saved for somebody worth much more.

Zidane's expectations, he found, were often baseless.