For those of you who have been reading my fanfic Jealousy, this is somewhat of a prequel. For those of you who haven't, you can still read this and follow it. There are only one or two things that may not make sense to you. This prequel revolves around Cloud Strife and what he's done, the people he met, and how he came to be in my fanfic Jealousy.

Clouded Skies, Scattered Light

Chapter One

A world enriched in darkness, with no light shining through. It's one thing that the Heartless seek, one thing that they will always continue to hunt for. Their travels lead them far and wide to many worlds. The worlds they visit suffer at the hands of darkness, and fall victim to the Heartless. The same can be said to one world, the very world that it all began.

Hallow Bastion is one of the largest castles ever constructed. Its origins are unknown; it's as if the castle has been there since the dawn of time. The people living there were gentle folks, living about the same routine everyday. They looked to their ruler for guidance.

However, that leader had disappeared and the people of the world were forced to figure out their way of life on their own. Ansem was gone to them. And with time, only the Heartless were there to return. The attack came swiftly and unexpectedly to the people of Hallow Bastion. They were not at all prepared for an attack in any form.

Two teenagers and a little girl were able to escape with the help of the world's engineer, who had invented a new type of ship. One that would carry them far from Hallow Bastion and the Heartless. They were soon frightened to find out that no matter where they went, Heartless were taking each world. In hopes of helping, they soon picked up arms and began training.

With each day of training, these three were able to come with terms over the fact that their world was gone, and the people they loved were no longer with them. They were the only ones left of Hallow Bastion. With each Heartless killed it was as if each were revenge for a single person they lost in that world.

This story however, does not revolve the hardships of these four survivors of Hallow Bastion. It revolves around the one they left behind, the one that tried holding the Heartless off long enough to let the others escape. They thought he died on that world, however he had survived, and he had been searching for someone, the one who released the Heartless onto their world…

It can easily be called one of the most beautiful places anyone could visit. In the day, the buildings seemed to glow with the light of the sun. However at night, its beauty is as radiant as it is in the daylight. The moonlight gives it a mystical appearance that fascinates travelers from all different worlds. When the rain visits the city, lovers can be seen on the streets sheltering themselves under an umbrella, using the rain as an excuse to get close to one another.

London sadly, does not have this effect on all of its visitors. With his heavy footfalls, and his weighted gaze, a traveler walks alone through the patting rain. His blonde hair, which is usually in an unearthly spikey fashion, is now flattened to his scalp.

His eyes held the deepest of blue, holding in five years of lonely world jumping. Yet within them he also held determination that would not be brought down no matter how many times he failed.

Sheathed at his back he held a sword, almost taller than he is that looked as if it weighed too much for him to properly swing. It was not only a weapon to dispose of Heartless, but also a way to ward off any unwanted people.

He wore a shoulder pad, constructed of a steel plate and bolts that stood up in the air. It has begun rusting with the constant weathering. His clothing consisted of just a pair of dark violet baggy pants and shirt; as well as black gloves and boots.

Everyone he would pass, were immediately weary of his appearance. His form spoke of someone dangerous, and the glare he seemed to constantly bare within his eyes spoke of a short temper. Few would ever gather the nerve to actually walk up to him to question him about anything.

This young man had escaped one of the largest Heartless invasions known to any world. He had escaped Hallow Bastion, but he did it on his own and by doing so, he was also left on his own. Others had escaped too; he knows this because he helped them. They were his friends; however he doesn't know where they are now.

For the most part, London is a calm place to be, very rarely do things happen. Even the Heartless seem quieter in the world. The local bars, where most fights break out with drunken fighters, are just as calm as the rest of the world. Everyone knows one another, and everyone seemed to agree on most things; however when a newcomer comes along, its one of the most fascinating things for them.

When this man, with his waterlogged appearance and giant sword, enter the bar, all eyes turn towards him upon his entrance. With all other instances, he ignores their stares, and the fact he's dripping water on the rug as he made his way towards the bar counter. He took a seat in the middle of the bar counter on as bar stool. His head bowed, letting the tips of his blonde hair to drip onto the polished wooden counter top.

"What will it be?" The bartender immediately questioned from his spot behind the counter. He finished cleaning up a mug with his apron and placed it with the others.

"Scotch", Was the man's soft reply.

The bartender placed an elbow on the counter as he leaned towards the young man, "How old are you? Do you have some sort of identification?"

"No."

"No I.D.? Then no scotch." The bartender pointed out before he straightened up from his leaned position. He jumped when he saw the young man reach for the hilt of his sword, and the whole bar suddenly got deathly quiet as they watched. However, when the blonde grabbed the hilt of the sword, all he did was move it, to lean it against the counter, rather than have it rest on his back.

The blonde reached into his pocket and pulled out a pouch of munny. He dropped it down on the counter, letting the munny spill out onto the counter. The bartender eyed the scattered munny and looked back over to the blonde. After a moment the bartender turned around and pulled out a glass and a bottle of scotch.

"Scotch", the bartender said as he placed the glass in front of the blonde. He watched his costumer nurse his scotch in his hands, just sipping at it slowly. "So what brings you here stranger?"

"…Passing through."

Most of the bar went back into its conversations prior of the blonde's entrance. A few of the drinkers had a new subject to speak of, and a few of them continued to eye the young man speaking with the bartender.

"Got a name?"

The glass gave a jingle when the blonde put it down on the counter, the ice inside of the glass having shuffled in the glass. The young man glanced up slightly, looking through wet strands of blonde hair to see the bartender, "…Strife."

"Strife?" The bartender replied in questioned, "Just Strife?" He asked while he filled the glass up with more scotch.

"Just Strife." Came the solemn reply.

The bartender nodded his understanding before he looked down at the impressive sword this 'Strife' had brought in, "What's the sword for?" The bartender tone was uneasy for he was afraid that the sword could be turned on him at any moment.

"Protection."

"Where you headed?"

"Away."

The bartender crossed his arms over his chest and gave a raised brow questioningly. The bartender stopped from saying anything when he noticed three of his other costumers had decided to come up to the counter to speak with the blonde.

"Well hey buddy." One of them said as he padded Strife on the back before taking a seat on the stool next to him.

Another one took the place behind him. He reached out and ruffled the blonde's wet hair, "Well aren't you a little young to be in here?" He joked with amusement ringing his voice.

"Don't touch me." Strife commented with annoyance.

"Aw… you hear that? He doesn't want to be touched." The first one commented before patting his on the back more, "We're all buddies here."

"Guys, check what the kid is packing." The third man said, referring to the large sword. He gave a long whistle before trying to pick it up, "Jesus… how heavy is this thing?" He lost his grip and it ended up being dropped flat on the floor.

"Hey, leave the guy alone." The bartender spoke up, not wanting anything to happen inside his bar.

The first man snapped his head over in the bartender's direction, "Shut up and just serve some drinks." He barked.

Strife placed his now empty glass on the counter and lifted his head up. His eyes closed to them, "Take your hand off me." He said with rising anger.

"I'll do what I damn well feel like." The first man commented before he grabbed Strife's arm, "You think you can walk in here and start telling me what to do?"

The blonde used his free arm to grab the man's arm and twist it which caused the man to cry out in surprise and pain as he leaned to the side to try and relieve the pressure.

"Hey!" The one behind Strife shouted grabbing the blonde's hair and giving it a sharp yank, to try and get him to release his drinking buddy. Strife released his hold but spun around in the stool and delivered a well aimed shot into the man's jaw.

After the pain in his arm subsided enough, the first man stood up to help, but Strife had already seen him coming and shot out a boot towards his chest. The man fell back onto the floor and the rest of the bar began to pay attention to the commotion up at the bar counter.

The third man gave a charge at Strife while the other two were down momentarily. The blonde bent down, shoving his shoulder into the man's gut and throwing him back, using the man's own momentum to pick him up off his feet and over the bar counter; just missing the bartender by a foot or so.

A sharp punch was dealt into Strife's stomach from the man he had clocked in the jaw. Instead of getting the wind knocked out of him, like the man had intended to do, Strife answered back with another shot in the jaw, and followed with a hard kick in the side.

Although he had bested the second man, the first one was back on his feet and was charging at Strife. By the time he turned around, the man managed to crash into his form like a football player, pushing him backwards. The blonde winced but dug his boot in to stop the man's progress, and when the drinker realized he couldn't push the blonde back any further he started to punch into his stomach.

Strife grabbed the man by his arms and smashed his knee up into his head. He spun around and tossed the man right through the large window behind him, much to the bartender's dismay.

A beer bottle shattering on the wall near his head caught Strife's attention. Upon turning around, he found the third man back on his feet behind the bar counter, picking up mugs and bottles alike as ammo to launch them at the blonde.

Strife picked up one of the small bar tables and held it in front of him, protection his head from any flying objects. The third drinker continued to throw bottles and mugs at him, despite the fact they did nothing except shatter on the table.

The second man thought it would be a good opportunity to attack once more. But his heavy footsteps were easy to pick up and by the time he got to him, Strife was rid of the table and grabbed him instead; perfect timing to use him as a shield from a flying mug that managed to shatter on the man's head.

Stunned and confused, the second man was unable to do much more than stand there as Strife spun him around before hurling him over the counter at his buddy. The remaining mugs and bottle of liquor sitting on the shelves shook violently from the hard landing, before they fell off and crash down on the two.

The blonde calmly took out two more pouches of munny and placed them on the counter for the bar tender. He then picked up his sword, sheathed it to his back and made his way towards the exit. The bar dead silent as all eyes watched his form leave.

The rain had not stopped from when he entered the bar. Strife glanced up to the dark skies above and let out a shaken breath. It was time for him to go to another world; this one was no use to him. With that thought in his mind he made his way down the side of the street, stepping on the first man's back as he walked past the shattered window.

Well that's it everyone. How's that for an opening chapter? Good? Bad? Hungry for more? Let me know. And for those of you new readers, remember this is a prequel to Jealousy, and even though the two fanfics may not be in the same setup, they are both good. So try reading that next when you have the time.