Morning After

disclaimer: Sephiroth and Marluxia belong to Square Enix.


The first thing a soldier-general, even a former one, did when he woke up, was notice his surroundings. Years of conditioning, even with his bout of insanity, had taught Sephiroth that.

His hands were empty, which was odd. He liked to keep Masamune, his sword, at hand, though he wasn't foolish enough to be dependent on it. He was also on a bed. Some second-grade cotton, probably in an inn. So he'd not camped out the night before. The next two things he noticed were that he wasn't clothed and someone was quite deeply breathing beside him.

Snapping alert, Sephiroth sat up, barely flinching in the hard morning light. There was a stale taste in his mouth that could only be alcohol, probably gin, but long flushed from his system. Freakish physical enhancements saw to that.

A body was on the other side of the bed, curled up in the sheets with the barest tuft of pink hair visible. Mako take it, he must have been damned drunk if he went home with someone last night. And someone with pink hair at that.

Sephiroth examined his arms with an expert eye. Scratches and a couple of bruises. And that was just the arms alone. A wild one, then. Smirking, he wondered when it was that he'd acquired a taste for the roughness. It hadn't been bad. The residual laziness in his bones only came when sated.

His single curled obsidian wing stretched out behind him, more than glad to be free of Sephiroth's crushing weight throughout the night. A few feathers fell on the pillows, black snow.

The room still smelled of sex: dank and musty. And he could see his and the other's clothes littering the floor. He wasn't clothed in anything but his own Jenova-touched silver hair, vainly long and falling to his tapered waist. All the blankets were tucked around the mysterious other in the bed.

The general frowned. He didn't need a blanket. Nor had he ever been ashamed of his body (the pride of the ShinRa Military), so there weren't any problems, there. But he was taken with a slightly morbid curiosity to know with whom exactly he'd shared his bed last night. Casually, efficiently, he wrapped the end of a blanket in one hand and jerked.

There was a soft breath and the rustle of displacement as a man unfurled from the cloth.

Sephiroth blinked. It wasn't a woman or even a Cloud-like prettyboy type, as he'd suspected from the hair. The man before him was a solid but lean figure, his shoulders broad and his face finely chiseled. Not even the various bruises and faded red marks on him could mar that. And he was awake.

"Is it custom in your world to be rude?" His voice was low, husky and tinted with arrogance. Someone used to getting what he wanted. Swinging his neck from side to side once, the man sat up and stretched languidly, muscles rippling. He looked like a tiger, ready for the hunt. A deadly grace. Not too far from his own.

Perhaps he could see why he might have gotten drunk with this man, after all.

"I don't think we fucked for manners."

The other man laughed briefly, mirthlessly, before running a hand through his sex-rumpled hair. Sephiroth suspected it was styled to always look that way." I'm Marluxia, by the way, in case you can't remember what you were screaming last night."

"…Sephiroth. If you could scream then I wasn't doing my part properly," he snorted softly, and started to get up.

"Such lovely hair. Do you wash it in unicorn blood?" Marluxias fingers held the tail end of Sephiroth's hair, letting the silky strands trail over them like a fall of mercury.

"Not any of your business." Standing, he reached for the first article of black he could see, opening it to reveal a floor length coat with none of the red trimmings that were his own. Carelessly, he tossed the article back at the bed. It would figure he'd gotten a man with a fetish for black leather to rival his own.

It was only when he was half dressed that he turned back to see Marluxia still on the bed, his pants and boots already on and the open coat slung about him. Eyes closed, he was basking in the sun from the window, a sunbathing cat. It was an oddly alluring sight. Ivy curled about the other man's arms, reaching for the sun eagerly with upturned leafy faces. He could remember the ghostly feel of those vines, the fine down on them as they explored his back.

"A sun-worshipper?" His tone was somewhere between disinterested curiosity and disgust. Sephiroth had traveled to a lot of worlds since his own had vanished. A wandering swordsman could learn a lot. But he'd never been a sunny person.

Blue eyes open. "I'm of the Darkness. Just like you taste of it." Marluxia curled his legs up under him and the material of his coat fell open just a little more. It highlighted the barely tanned skin of a careful gardener underneath. "But I find the morning sun as refreshing as my pets do." The leaves rustled as the vines turn towards him, nodding faintly on an unknown wind. Almost like they had sentient thought. He was a plant master, then.

Snapping buckles efficiently on, Sephiroth ignored the plants. They were barely worth slicing to pieces. He would be leaving as soon as he got the last buckle closed.

"Your choice of clothing is inconvenient, general." There was a lingering musicality in the tone. A very faint one. Like a quiet garden in harmony. Very charismatic. But Sephiroth was no stranger to such men. In Shinra or in the mirror.

"See, something like this," Marluxia stood, pulling the zipper of his coat down sensuously, a reverse strip tease, "is so much easier." The smug smile on his face could have belonged on any Shinran president too. If any president in that corporation had the skills of a murderer to back it up.

There was barely an impression on the bed he left. Like the Assassin was made of Nothing the way the Angel was tainted by the Dark.

Casually, Marluxia pushed his roseate hair back with one hand and started to walk to the door with more grace than he should be able to, considering the One-Winged Angel never went easy.

Brushing past Sephiroth, he laid a hand on his shoulder and leaned in for a moment, murmuring: "It was fun. Maybe some other time." And smiling a heartless smile, went through a swirling vortex of inky void.

Leaving one vaguely bemused Sephiroth, a night-tinted rose tucked into the silver-haired man's left shoulder plate, and the undeniably heady-sweet scent of withering roses in the spent room.


Notes: For the lovely Zebbie who sent me things that massacred my mind. Including a comic where Sephiroth admits to Riku that he's his father… and that his mother is Marluxia (Manho). You know it wins.

And betaed at the speed of light by chiiaroscuro/SKF. Thanks muchly. 3

Also, I take great liberties with Sehiroth's character. He's saner and more 'kid-friendly' in KH, that much we can see (which, once again, makes me really want to see KH!Kuja and the undoubted costume change he'll have). I'm not sure about where he comes from and what he's like, so yeah, let's just pretend he has all the FF7 background.

That said, comments are welcome.