(A/N: A series of drabbles focusing on Cid and Shera's relationship over the years. Each drabble can stand alone, although some are loosely connected. The collection is not in chronological order; it ranges across the original game and AC canon, and beyond.)
Their first kiss was not the most pleasant experience. His stubble scratched against her skin and his mouth tasted of smoke. He pressed himself against her, his fingers stroking her hair, his gaze warm. She felt wanted. She pulled away first and watched his eyes crinkle as he grinned. Then she looked down, blushing. Cid slung an arm around her shoulder and carted her off to the bedroom, whistling. He was like an eager young pup, assuming that after that first tongue-abusing kiss, she would be swooning in his arms. Instead, she told him to invest in some mouth wash.
One evening, Cid whisked her off to Cosmo Canyon. He made her close her eyes throughout the journey. The heat hung around her like a soft blanket. Not a breath of wind stirred. They climbed a set of stairs, Cid's arm guiding her, and she sensed when they ventured indoors and when they emerged again by the change in temperature. Finally, they reached the top. Cid told her to open her eyes, and she gasped when she did. The sun's last rays tinged the land a fiery red. The whole canyon was alight. She had never seen anything so beautiful.
Of all Cid's companions, Nanaki was undoubtedly the strangest. When the creature prowled up and interrupted their embrace by the Cosmo Candle, she jumped and clung to Cid's arm.
"H-hello," she stammered. The beast inclined its head towards her. Even sitting on its haunches, its body was poised with a predatory grace. She noticed a tattoo, the number thirteen, on its muzzle.
"How did you get that tattoo?" she asked, her fear temporarily forgotten.
The creature stretched, gazing at her with soft, intelligent eyes. And as it spoke, something in her mind shifted. A person, she realised, not a beast.
He stormed in, banged the door and sat down with his boots on the table. Then he roared for a cup of tea. That was normal. She entered the kitchen and stopped in her tracks. Cid wore a pink ribbon tied around his arm. Her mouth fell open.
Cid drummed his fingers on the table. "What are you staring at, woman?"
"I didn't know pink was your colour," she said.
His eyes flicked to the ribbon. She expected him to shout, but his voice went oddly quiet. "It's a memento of someone."
"Someone who sacrificed herself for the Planet."
The new airship was moored on the field where the Shinra rocket used to be. She'd lost count of the weeks Cid spent there, yelling at the workers and mechanics he employed. He wouldn't let her help. She was reading when the door banged open and Cid's begrimed face appeared.
"It's ready!" he said. "Wanna take a spin?"
They ran hand-in-hand to the airfield. Shera stared at the magnificent airship and read the name painted on the hull.
"You named it after me!"
He grinned, and she kissed him again and again, not caring that his face was caked with dirt.