Title: We Fit Together

Category: Pre-Final Fantasy VII through to Post-DoC

Rating: Pg... maybe pg13? I suppose. I don't really know. xD

Genres: General, humor, Romance, fluff, shounen ai-ishness

Warnings:SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS()&(#()&#Be VERY much aware this fic is FILLED with spoilers, goddammit. xD;;

DHC: A fic I'd been working on and finished a few months ago. This was originally supposed to be a drabble of Chibi!Cloud meeting Vinny for the first time but, it just kept getting longer and longer and then it didn't seem complete so the filler scenes kept coming and it turned into a full blown fic, dammit. xD;;

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Fear.

It was a sensation the child was used to, but never this strongly.

It struck inside of them so sharply, it stopped their breath, made their lungs hurt, and stilled their entire body, forcing the muscles to clench, tensing up and lock.

The fear that was instilled upon them so forcefully came from the violent, utterly dreadful creature of sorts no more than fifteen feet, maybe more away from them. It was ravenous; it was differently coloured and the way it moved was enough to petrify the child, let alone hearing it's heart-stopping scream.

Trying to swallow, the young child managed to gasp in a breath. Unfortunately, that alerted the monster to his position and it whipped around, beginning to head for them. Big, innocent blue eyes widened even farther with fear, stumbling, tripping over their own clumsy feet as they tried vainly to move, to get away from the awful scene. They fell back with a cry, head smacking against the floor, eliciting a cry of pain, golden locks becoming stained with dust, sweat already matting the usual spikes down. The young boy trembled.

The beast screamed again as it continued to stalk towards him. He sat up and scooted back quickly, as fast as his fear-stricken limbs could carry up. But soon enough, he gasped again when he felt his back bump up against the far wall.

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It had just started out as a game. He'd snuck into the abandoned, large mansion when the others weren't looking and went exploring. He could read very well, so when he found the letter lying innocently on the floor, he picked it up and read it. It said something about a game they'd made up and he had to go around and find the numbers and directions. Then he was to use those to open the big, black, locked box in another room upstairs which would give him a key.

A key! It must have been to some kind of treasure! He eagerly and quickly managed to find all four clues and all but joyfully ran to the room with the big black box and stared at the lock, the clues he'd received and memorized suddenly clicked in his young mind and he quickly, eagerly, with only a child's energetic speed, undid the lock and flung open the door.

The first thing he saw, was the key, a red orb, and some kind of book. He greedily grabbed them all up. When he beamed proudly and looked up, the large smile quickly faded and his mouth opened agape, eyes widening. There, in front of him was the largest, scariest thing he'd ever seen in all his six years. Immediately, he began backing away and turned and ran. He was thankfully, faster than the monster and managed to run into another room and hid. When the monster got closer and let out it's scream; it terrified the poor child to the core, bringing him to the predicament he was in.

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Swallowing, the child squeezed his eyes shut, pressing his whole body as close to the wall as he could, palms flat against the wall. Something felt odd, though. There was a slight raise in the wall where his right hand was unlike the others. When he pressed harder, it moved! Suddenly a rumbling was heard and his eyes sprung open wide, looking frantically to the side where the noise had come from. A door had opened where there had been a wall!

The thing was close now. Not even checking to see where the door led, the boy all but flung himself through it and slammed the passage behind him shut, realizing he was on some stairs. He heard the monster shriek again, close, nearly behind the wall and fear propelled his small legs to run, down the stairs. Halfway down, he heard the loud scraping and banging as the monster tried to tear the door open.

Swallowing and trying to breathe, the child got down the long, winding stairs. He stopped at the bottom, out of breath. He panted loudly, the sound echoing down the large, spacious tunnel he was in. It was like some large basement of some kind. It was kinda creepy and scary, but, the child wasn't the least bit scared since he'd really learned the meaning of what to fear. No sooner had he thought that, he heard a loud crash and crunch as the beast managed to break the door.

Frightened blue eyes flung open wide and he began to run again. He ran down the hall way, only coming to a stop when there was another hallway to his left. Frantically turning his head, he saw a door against the wall there on the left. They dashed for it, desperately grabbed the handle and twisted.

It didn't budge. It was locked.

Trembling as he heard the creature's steps, he tried the door again. It rattled, but didn't budge. Suddenly, he remembered: the Key! He fumbled in his pockets, pulling out the key in his small, trembling hands, he hastily shoved the key into the hole in the door and twisted. The creature roared, echoing through the place sending a shudder up his spine, it was closer. His small hand grabbed the handle again and twisted, pushing his body against the door.

It swung open and he stumbled, nearly fell, but caught himself and scrambled inside, grabbing the key out of the hole and slammed the door, locking the door again from the inside before he let out a loud sigh, resting back against the door.

He took that time to look at the details of the room now. Coffins. There were several coffins in a row, along with various other things, like a table along the far wall, with burnt down candles. it was fully dark in the room, but the boy had rather keen senses. And the fear he'd felt only heightened them. Fumbling around in his pockets again, he put the key back in there, but closed his hand around another item. It was round. He pulled it out. It glowed a faint green colour in his hand.

It was a materia.

It was a worn, well used one he'd bought with what little gil he'd saved doing random jobs. He bought it half price from a brand new one. It worked just as well for him, though. He carefully stepped around the coffin in the middle and timidly crept toward the far wall. Carefully, he pulled the worn down candles closer to the edge, having to stand on his tiptoes to reach them. With them closer, he concentrated, focusing his mind on the spell from the materia. Since he had nothing to channel it into, he was forced to use his hand. He brought his hand up, stood on his tiptoes, and focused the spell to his fingertip. A small flame ignited there, but did not burn him, strangely.

It never had.

He brought his finger close to the wick of the candle and blew gently, the breeze just enough to make the flame flicker over the wick and long enough to let it ignite. Pleased, he carefully lit the other candles in the same manner until they all were lit. Once he was finished, he extinguished the spell, feeling suddenly drained and tired, he could feel the high from his adrenaline starting to wear off now. He felt calmer. Now, he fully turned and took in the full, lit up view of the room. Curious about the coffins, he lifted the lid on some of them, seeing only skeletons. It didn't frightend him, oddly enough.

Maybe because his mind refused to think they were real, or perhaps the trauma from the monster hadn't worn off completely as to bring back his more aware mind. Stopping, he went to the larger coffin in the center. For a moment, he thought he heard something. But when he strained to listen, he heard nothing. He'd heard the scary thing's footsteps rumbling by moments earlier, prowling for him. Snapping back to attention, he reached his small arms up as far as he could, trying to lift the lid so he could see in. But since it was taller, and sitting on something else, he had to stand on his tiptoes.

Doing so, he still wasn't quite tall enough. Struggling, after a moment later, the lid fell off of the coffin and let out a loud clatter on the floor. He gasped, freezing, straining his ears to listen to see if the monster had heard. Thankfully, he heard nothing but the dull scrape of the monster's steps farther away. Letting out a breath of relief, he turned, intending to peek into the coffin.

But what met his sight when he turned his head and lifted his gaze was a shock itself. Crimson eyes, long dark hair, pale skin, red clothing. It was the first impression, it was a large blur at first and the child had backed away, gasping in wonder, shock, and fear again. Then, he looked again. This time, it wasn't a monster. It was a person. A human being. But, why were they in the coffin?

Trembling, he looked back up to the person's gazing crimson eyes and met them curiously. For some reason, he just wasn't afraid now. Though it had nothing to do with the fact he'd been scared out of his wits moments earlier, he just couldn't say what entirely it was. His six year old mind couldn't find words to describe, it.

His breath caught again, softly, once their eyes broke contact and his eyes finally moved to take their sight in again. It was a man. They had long, dark hair, a headband tied around their forehead. Crimson eyes, pale skin, and a dark, long red cloak with black clothing underneath it, from what he could see.

It was slightly aweing to the blond child. Timidly, he stepped forward again, placing his hands on the rim of the coffin as he stood on his tiptoes. "U-um. E-excuse me..." He said softly, his voice still slightly shaky from the fear he'd felt from the monster, vocal chords still working on loosening again. "B-but...why are you in this coffin? Are you part of the game? Are you the vampire thinggy that pops up to tell me I've won?"

The man blinked, slowly. He stared at the child a long time. The boy stayed silent, slightly unnerved by the stare and silence, but didn't back away or do anything else but meet the other's eyes. Finally the man let out a soft, low sound, almost like a brief chuckle, but not, before they opened their mouth, speaking just as quietly. "What game is this you're speaking of? I am no vampire. As for why I am here..." The person paused, head dipping down, part of his face disappearing beneath the high collar on the neck of the cape.

"Is because I failed to do something and I am being punished for it." The man's voice sounded different this time, distant...like he was distracted. And the boy frowned. "B-but..." He stuttered softly. "Why would you be punished if you didn't do something? Did you not do a chore or something? My momma gets after me sometimes when I don't help..."

To this, the man actually did chuckle, though it was a light sound and the barest indication he was laughing was the slight shaking of their shoulders. "No, child. It is much different than that. I didn't stop someone I loved from doing somethat that could hurt them...and because of that, I punished myself by staying in this coffin."

The child didn't fully understand, but...he could see the sorrow this person had. It was something lonesome and sad. It pained him as well, for reasons he didn't know. He'd always been gifted, as his momma said, in the ways of how other people were feeling. Anyway, he raised his head again and nodded. "Don't feel...so sad. Even if they...hurt themselves and you couldn't help...I'm sure you don't deserve to be punished."

The man said nothing in return, but changed the subject, avoiding anymore topic of what he was doing there. "What was this game you had spoken of, child?"

The six year old nodded, and recanted his tale, informing the male of why he was there, what he was doing, and presented him the letter, told him the combination, what was in there, and about the monster. When he finished, the man had a dark expression on. The boy looked up at him in confusion. "What's wrong?"

The man sighed, before slowly standing from the coffin and jumped down out of it. The boy looked up, and up, and up. The man was tall, and he wore some funny clothes. The long red cloak swept all the way down to the floor nearly. The man brushed himself off from the dust before sighing. "It is nothing of your own doing. But tell me, what is your name?"

To this, the blond boy nodded eagerly and smiled. "I'm Cloud, sir! Cloud Strife! I'm six years old and I'm gonna be in SOLDIER!" His smile was innocent and bright. The other merely stared for a moment, as if unused to such a thing before he himself replied. "I see. You may call me Vincent." The boy nodded, smiling wider if possible.

The man stretched briefly before turning to look at the door. "You say there's a monster out there from when you opened the box?" He questioned again. Cloud nodded hastily. "Yeah! It was big, and different colours and scary!" He shivered, the fear briefly coming back to his face as he remembered it. The man nodded again. He tried the door and found it locked. The boy blinked. "Oh!" He dug around in his pocket and pulled the key out. The man blinked. The boy held it out to him. "A-are you going to see the monster?"

The man nodded silently, taking the key from the child's grip. He unlocked the door again, putting his hand on the handle and was going to turn it but suddenly the child's hand took a hold of his wrist. He looked down, brow arching in question to the child.

The blond boy ran a hand through his hair, making his hair stick straight back up in odd spikey angles. He put his hands in his pockets and pulled out two orbs. One green, one red in colour. He held them up to him. "H-here. Take these just in case. The red one I got from the box, so I dunno what it does, but the green one is a fire matera I bought used." He said softly.

The man looked surprised at the child's generosity and concern about his safety. He took the materia and pulled a gun out from a holster behind him, carefully equipping the materia into said gun before sliding it back into it's holder. "Thank you." He said softly, before turning again, turning the knob on the door. "Stay here, and don't leave until I come back." He instructed.

Cloud nodded. He wasn't about to go back out there. But, he hoped that this man, Vincent, could take care of the monster, or at least chase it away. "Okay... Good luck. Be careful, Mr. Vincent." He smiled weakly. The man gave a light nod before stepping out of the room, closing the door behind him and he strained to hear the man's light footsteps walking slowly away until he couldn't hear anything else. He sighed heavily, looking around for a place to sit, but there were no chairs. So, he improvised. He climbed up onto the table thing and climbed into the coffin that Vincent had occupied.

It was still warm and it comforted the still shocked, if not slightly traumatized boy. It reminded him of his mother almost. And since the lining was red and satin-like, he easily laid down in it, curling up as he could finally hear noise, loud rumbling upstairs and muffled things and the like. He tried to focus on it, praying Vincent would be okay, but slowly, he found his eyes drooping farther and farther down until his eyes were fully shut, unable to hold them open. His breathing evened out and his body went lax, fully relaxing and untensing, mind and body succumbing to he exhaustion of the events.

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The next thing the six year old child knew, he was being shaken, his name being called. But it wasn't a voice he recognized. Slowly, groggily, he opened his eyes and sat up, yawning, rubbing his eyes. He blinked, looking around. This wasn't his room! He turned his head and met the imploring crimson eyes next to him. He jumped, mouth opening, but no scream escaped, body tensing up again. Then, slowly, everything came back to the child and he relaxed. "Oh... V-Vincent?" He yawned again. "I-is...is the monster gone?" He asked weakly. The man nodded. "Yeah, it's gone."

The boy smiled wider. "Wow!" He said with a rushed awe. The man smiled, barely, but the boy couldn't see it since his cloak hid it. The child was a bright one. He was intelligent, smart, he could tell the boy was going to be something special. He said he'd wanted to be in SOLDIER... He wanted nothing to do with Shinra anymore, but, if that's what the boy wanted...

"Come, I believe it is best time for you to leave now. You won't have anymore problems with monsters." The boy yawned once more, stretched widely, before climbing out of the coffin, rubbing his eyes with one hand as he subconsciously grabbed Vincent's arm and let the man lead him back up the stairs, though the door, out of the room, down the hall, down the stairs to the first floor, and to the door.

Once there, he let go of Vincent and looked up at him, smiling widely. "Thank you for helping me, Vincent!" The man made a soft sound before holding his hand out, his materia in his hand. With wide eyes, he beamed, taking the materia back and stuck it back in his pocket. The man smiled in an off-sort of way and reached his hand out, awkwardly ruffling the boy's spikes in an attempt of affection, which was recieved with much enthusiasm. "Stay out of trouble now, Cloud. And...good luck becoming a SOLDIER."

The boy nodded hastily and beamed widely, but stopped before he turned for the door. "But...what about you?" He asked, looking concerned for the man. The man shook his head slowly. "My place is here. My punishment is not over yet." Cloud looked into his eyes and he saw the forlorn look there in his eyes and the hurt again, the longing for something he could not understand. Without a word, the child launched himself forward and wrapped his small arms around the male in a hug. "Don't be sad, Vincent. We're friends and always will be. I may not see you again for a long time, and I may forget, but I'll do my best to become a SOLDIER First class and then I'll come see you! And then you don't have to be punished anymore!" He beamed up widely at the mysterious man.

The man had gone still, staring down into the child's eyes, seeing his sincerity, but not wanting to really believe the words, since he did not want for his hope to be raised and then shattered. But he nodded briefly. "Hm. I suppose I'll see you, then." He said softly, ruffling the child's hair.

"Yup!" The boy let go and turned, opening the door to the mansion. "Bye-bye, Vincent! I promise you, one day!" With that, the child bound down the creaking steps of the mansion and down the path and out the gate, running back down into the little town known as Nibelheim.

Vincent slowly returned up the stairs, pausing to check to the left when he reached the top, satisfied and gave a nod before continuing to the right and through the tunnel, down the stairs and back to the room, locking the door from the outside with a spare key only he himself carried, having returned the other one to the safe. He only stopped once and that was a long pause at the base of his coffin, turning his head back slightly to cast one last longing look towards the door behind him.

That child, Cloud... He'd opened the door to a life Vincent couldn't have. That temptation was almost too much for the man. Yet, he turned his head back and stepped into his coffin and laid down inside of it once more, pulling the lid up and shut it over himself, closing his eyes. Briefly, the boy's features and smile washed across his mind, and his words softly echoed through his mind. Another brief smile made it to his lips before his body was willed once more into it's timeless sleep.

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Cloud, 21, rubbed the temples of his head as he sighed, gazing up at the large mansion in front of him. With him were Aerith and Yuffie here in the reconstructed Nibelheim. Slowly he opened the gate, gaining a sense of deja vu once more, but unable to place where or how. He walked up the steps, and into the mansion, ignoring the chatter of Yuffie, and drowning out the questioning of Aerith. For a moment, everything was blissfully blank, a brief flash in his mind, yet he couldn't remember. He let his body move, ignoring Yuffie again as she picked up a letter, ignoring Aerith as she found something. He continued up the stairs to the second floor and turned left, feeling pulled nearly. He went down the hall and turned right. In the room was a black safe. He approached it slowly, a sinking feeling in his body.

His left hand slowly went for the sword that was strapped to his back and unfastened it, right hand reaching out and mechanically turning the lock on it to numbers he didn't even know he knew, until the lock clicked open. Opening the door, he jumped back just in time to avoid a swipe as a large monster jumped out. Momentary shock and slight fear kicked in, but he steeled himself and moved into a battle position and fully drew his sword, Aerith and Yuffie running in just at that moment to join him.

They defeated the monster fairly easily together and Cloud once more approached the safe. Inside were three items. A key, a book, and a red materia. He looked strangely at the items, feeling as if he'd seen them before. And upon checking the materia, it had been used once. The book was actually a manual called Cosmo Memory. And the key... Suddenly he turned on his heel, brushing past Yuffie and Aerith again, heading down the corridor and kept going, to the right, down through the door that was somehow wide open, down the stairs, down the corridor to the left, and stopped right infront of a door.

Unhesitatingly, he put the key into the lock and turned, unlocking it with a click, just barely hearing Aerith and Yuffie's approach. Slowly, he opened the door and went in, entering into the room. It was familliar, yet foreign at the same time. There were coffins in the place, long burnt out candles on the far end of the wall on a table. He approached the middle coffin and pulled the lid off.

His eyes laid upon a dark haired, pale, red cloaked figure. Suddenly their eyes snapped open and the sat straight up quickly, the girls backed away but Cloud stood there, unwavering as he met the figures imploring crimson eyes that bore into his, feeling himself drowning in them yet he didn't break the stare, feeling oddly calm. "Who-" The male started to say, but paused, looking over the male, to the females before standing up. He jumped, flipped in the air and landed on the rim of the coffin.

Cloud and the strange figure continued to hold their stare, a silent conversation going on between the two for the longest time before the man jumped lightly down into his coffin and sat back down. "You should leave before the Nightmare consumes you, too." He spoke finally, before pulling the coffin lid back over himself.

Yet Cloud was feeling unsatisfied with this, wanting to know why the male felt so familiar to him and how he understood so well. He shoved the coffin lid back and at least demanded a name from this person. "Vincent. Vincent Valentine. Formerly of the Turks." The name made him frown as he felt he should know something, but didn't. He turned on his heel and left the room, turning left and continued into the library and laboratory that Hojo once used.

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Cloud slowly made his way down the corridor of the Highwind silently to the cabins and softly knocked on a door, waiting for a soft acknowledgment before opening the door and entering. "Vincent?" He called softly. The male in question was standing in front of the large window, simply staring out of it. The blond approached the male and laid a hand on the man's shoulder. The gunsman turned his head towards him, giving the blond his attention.

Cloud Strife, for the first time in a long while, offered the male a smile. It was small, just the barest turn of the lips, but it was a pure one, a real one. And with that smile, it carried the innocence it once did when he was a child. The man's eyes widened briefly. Cloud withdrew his hand and looked out the window now.

"I'm sorry I forgot my promise to you. After all of those experiments, I couldn't remember much of anything, and then when Zack died... And I started to believe myself partly to be him... I forgot many things that I knew and remembered the things he did. I forgot about you, what happened... Yet..." He trailed off softly.

Vincent turned fully and shook his head. "You still remembered, Cloud." He murmured softly. "You still came and found me, did you not? I saw it in your eyes then, that you knew me, even if you didn't recognize me. And I knew the moment I saw you that it was you. For a moment, I decided I would not redeem on your promise, but..."

Cloud smiled again, only a little wider than before. "I'm...glad you did come, Vincent. Even though...it took me all this time to finally remember."

The red cloaked man smirked faintly, reaching out his arm and ruffled the younger's hair with an affectionate, but slightly awkward gesture. This was a familiar action and the blond closed his eyes at the feel, sighing softly.

The rest of the time Cloud was in there, they stood in silence and let their eyes converse the words instead of their voices, mako injected blue ones drowning in placid crimson.

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Vincent Valentine stood on the platform of the tower they were on, silently gazing as Tifa climbed higher and higher, and keeping track of the rapidly ascending Bahamut Sin. Then, he looked down and dove off, hand immediately grabbing, fingers wrapping around a wrist, crimson eyes staring down deep into blue ones as Cloud and him were at the same level for a few moments of time. Yet, their eyes spoke a million things in that moment and Vincent swung his arm, throwing Cloud's weight even higher, used it to propell him up, only to push himself down, murmuring only one word to him.

"Fly."

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Vincent flipped out his cellphone, pausing on one of the walkways of the once Shinra Building in what was once Midgar. He dialed a number and listened, but all he got was a busy signal before he hung up. No sooner had he done so, than it rang. He flipped it open again and brought it to his ear.

"Hey, I got through!" A voice yelled.

"Tifa?" He questioned, frowning curiously.

"Wha? You got through? Yo-! Vincent-! You still alive?!" Another voice yelled.

"Of course he is, we're talking to him, aren't we? And do you really have to shout right next to my ear?" The previous voice, Tifa spoke. The former voice being Barret's.

"Sorry 'bout that, Tifa!" Barret said. Vincent smirked faintly at the conversation. "I apologize, Vincent. Here's Cloud." Tifa said softly before her voice was replaced with Cloud's.

"Vincent?"

Vincent smirked again. "Cloud. It's been a while." When, in all actuality, hadn't been that long at all, really. But, he was humoring the blond in his own way.

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"Cid's airship?" The dark haired gunner asked.

"We lost contact about fifteen minutes ago. I don't think we have to worry, though. Those two should be fine." Cloud reassured. Vincent's expression softened for a moment, looking a bit relieved.

"Yeah. And what about you?" He didn't want to show he was worried, but when it came to the blond, he couldn't help but show his concern.

"What do you think?" Came the slightly amused, yet bored tone. Underneath it, he heard the slight sarcasm, but gratefulness about his worry.

"Right! You can count on us!" Tifa interjected into the conversation.

Gunshots started firing in the background from what Vincent could hear. "When I'm through, there won't be a single sucka standing!" Barret yelled.

Vincent chuckled briefly, smirk widening. "Right."

Cloud's voice cut back in. "And as for you-" He could hear the concern in his voice asking him if he was okay or if he needed anything. It was enough to make the gunsman smile, briefly as he interjected.

"Don't worry. Leave deepground to me." He reassured, chuckling quietly to himself so Cloud couldn't hear it. They were sure a pair. It was strange... But he never complained about it.

"Can you hold on a second?" Cloud asked. "Tifa."

"Got it!" Rang Tifa's kind voice. "Vincent, I'm sending you a map of the Shinra building. Deepground is below the complex. Take an elevator as far down as you can. Good lu--"

"Give 'em hell, Vincent!" Barret interjected, making Vincent smirk. He wasn't called the Hellraiser for nothing.

"Barret, I thought I told you to--" Tifa tried again.

"Don't go getting yourself killed, now." Cloud ordered, another tone underneath it. One that only Vincent understood. 'Be careful, good luck, and come back safe. Or else I'm going to come down there and drag your carcass back up and kick deepground's ass myself.' It made him smirk again. "Hn." He flipped his phone down and put it in his pocket before moving on.

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Cloud's quiet footfalls stirred Vincent out of his thoughts as he listened to the man approaching behind him. He lifted his head up and turned his to the left just enough to see the blond out of the corner of his eye. "Hn." He greeted softly, turning to acknowledge the man's presence.

"Vincent." Cloud greeted, a slight smile rising to his face.

"Cloud."

The blond made his way over by him and sighed heavily. They lapsed into silence and didn't speak for quite some time. Vincent was aware of Cloud's space for silence when he had something on his mind. He'd speak it in due time once he could find the words. It was an unspoken agreement for the gunslinger to stay silent. Not that he had much to say, anyway.

"Does it...Or, maybe I should say...will it..." He male frowned deeply, as if searching for the right words and struggled for a moment, before sighing heavily once more. "Will it...get easier?" He asked softly, voice sounding the slightest bit timid.

To that, Vincent sighed himself, unable to really answer that question. "I don't know," He answered honestly. "But I hope so..." Guilt weighing on a person's conscious for so long, it took alot of adjusting to accept and start to let it go. He could only hope that it truly was for the better. At least, for Cloud's sake, anyway. He didn't mind so much if it didn't his.

He could live with this guilt if he had to. But he knew; he knew Cloud was not truly made for baring the guilt and weight of stress such as this, no. No, what circumstances he'd been through was what had changed him, enabled him to last this long. But if it continued, it would destroy him in the long run.

And in the process, fully corrupt what innocence the man had left. He still had shards of it, small pieces that showed through on the rare ocasion--like whenever Cloud would truly smile--but it still was there. And if he went on harboring that guilt, it would fully taint what innocence he did retain. And all light would eventually leave him, and in the end, destroy him. Vincent winced at that particular thought, almost unable to bare, let alone hardly able to comprehend the thought of that scenario.

"...Vincent? Are you alright?" The dark haired man glanced slowly over to the blond and saw him looking at him with a frown of concern. For a brief instant, he saw the frightened, six year old child he once had been standing there with that look before reality closed upon him once again and he gave a soft chuckle, dipping his head to the other's question. "Hn."

The blond nodded and fell silent again, eyes closing. He watched as a variety of emotions played out across the blond's pale features. Pain, shadows of sorrow tracing across his face, guilt--it still weight heavily on his subconscious, but he'd saw the blond was slowly letting it go. Traces of regret, slightest hints of other emotions playing along his face before mako-induced blue eyes slowly slid open, eyes glowing in that bright, alluring way.

And yet, despite that, Vincent could still picture them the way they once had been. Pure, undiluted of Mako and the true form of blue they once had been without the enhancements. They were a beautiful colour. But he wasn't complaining about how Cloud's eyes looked now, no. No, the mako certainly did enhance not only his vision, but it also enhanced the colour of his eyes and that natural alluring beauty that could make anyone want to drown in that stare.

"It was never your fault, you know..." He murmured softly, though this was just a well-worn speech they'd been through before. To that, it earned a snort. "It wasn't yours, either." Came the retort.

Yet, this time, the other managed to break a slight smile and a helpless shrug. "...Maybe not, but the guilt that I could do nothing is more than enough to have me arguing otherwise." He said. This surprised the other, but only barely. They nodded lightly. "Yes. To just stand there and be unable to do anything, you're helpless..." The blond shook their head, hands clenching into tight fists for a moment and their eyes clenched shut, and it looked as if the man were fighting some inner demon only he could see or hear.

Perhaps he was, everyone had their own dark demons. Especially him. But he wasn't going to dwell on that. Vincent reached his hand out and laid it on Cloud's shoulder in silent support. After a moment, the younger man relaxed, the twisted expression on their face faded and their hands unclenched with a loud sigh, slumping over just a little in slight defeat.

Fingers curled and lightly tugged--leaving the blond to look curious as they allowed their body to follow the tugs until he felt Vincent's clawed gauntlet slide slowly around his hips, and the hand on his shoulder slide off as he was pulled back against the other. And for a moment, Cloud lost himself to that support, eyes sliding heavily closed as his full weight pressed back against the taller, older man.

It was a secure, safe feeling.

All thoughts stilled and died away from his mind and any feelings other than this tranquil calm dulled and was forgotten for the time being. Long dark tresses tickled against the back and side of his neck, the slightest of shivers rising up his spine, giving him the lightest wave of goosebumps. A weight laid upon his shoulder, he acknowledged it as Vincent's chin. Barest of touches to the side of his neck from the fluttering of eyelashes, until the firmer press of the male's nose softly nuzzling into him.

He relaxed even farther, if it were possible, letting himself open completely to the other man's ministrations, a soft sigh escaping his lips. Another tremor ran up his spine as lips slowly brushed and ghosted across the side of his neck, the slightest shifting and tightening of the gunner's arm around his waist reassured him. A smile slowly found it's way to the blond's lips, his arm rising up run through and tangle into dark strands of silk at the base of Vincent's neck.

Somehow, without coordination on either part, but in perfect synchronization, their free hands met--palm against the back of a hand, and fingers curled, intertwining and locking slowly; the barest of squeezes against their fingers in a silent language neither needed to speak to understand. A barest twitch of digits were the only reply as the taller man's lips continued to move, brushing slowly, almost lazily in a paced way, taking their time to draw out every kiss along Cloud's neck, a quiet moan of content his only prize.

Both lost themselves to the moment, unable to keep track of time that slipped by around them, too enthralled in silent passion that spoke tones louder than any voice.

Two figures watched from the doorway of the room, both of them wearing similar expressions upon their faces. Soft, kind smiles, but their eyes held a glaze of remorse underneath the softened, tear moistened gaze of happiness. Neither were willing to disturb their perfect moment, far too happy to see their beloveds happy at last.

Owari.

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DHC: Well, there you go. Holy. Shit. To think It was originally supposed to just be a drabble...xD And I didn't really put a whole bunch of facemunch and gropeage to. I was going for a more symballic thing with their physical affection than I normally do. xD;; Buut yeah. Gotta love Valenstrife. -giggle-