This chapter moves between Vincent and Tifa a lot, and it's the last chapter! For those of you who've read it before, I haven't changed anything majorly, and for those who haven't, I hope you enjoy it!

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Chapter 12

Vincent: bitterness

It was pretty stupid of me, to think I was someone special, that perhaps what we had together was special. She'd always loved Cloud, and I'd always known she had. So why this time, did it hurt so much? After all, its not the first time I've been somebody's second choice. Lucrecia loved Hojo. Whether or not she loved me, more or less, is inconsequential now. I was under the illusion that she actually preferred him. Maybe she did, maybe she didn't.

I just wished that I'd been more cautious, if that were indeed possible. Now, I am sensing that history is going to repeat itself. Maybe I should have just died a long time ago, cold and starving in that godforsaken coffin; at least then I wouldn't have to face the same pain, and I wouldn't have to go on living with the hope that she might change her mind. I knew my mind still worked the same way. Sure, I'm a lot more cautious now; Tifa would verify that, but still…

It would seem I've managed to work myself into the same dead end. And unfortunately, this whole thing will have the same results.

Tifa with him, and me, stood in the sidelines repeating, well if she's happy then I don't mind.

The heart is a fickle friend, never giving you a straight answer, or a straight path to take, though it seemed like the road I was on was awfully familiar. The same dusty, lonely dust track leading into nowhere. Maybe I am better off alone…That way, no one can hurt me anymore.

My hurried footsteps had carried me to the cliff top just past the JPD HQ. The sun was on the verge of setting, the orange plate ready to dip into the ocean of liquid gold. The sunset was a watery one; low pressure from inland and high from the coast promising a thunderstorm shortly. The heavy grey clouds were threatening to swallow what slim segment of the sunset remained.

I welcomed the cool breeze as the temperature dropped in preparation. I could taste the charge in the air as the storm's energy brewed above me. I knew the wind would carry the storm itself further inland, but the coast would suffer a torrential rainstorm.

"Vince?" I turned to see Lenny and Flit watching me, triumph alight in their faces. They had fought alongside Barret's Corel faction, succeeding in overthrowing the ShinRa inside the base. All they had on their minds was victory.

"Y-yeah?" I ran a hand over my forehead.

"Didn't you hear?" Flit began excitedly. "Tifa was at Corel with Barret! He brought her with him. She's alive, Vince, you can see her!" I sighed and turned away again.

"I know."

It made me feel sick to think of the irony- they had only just figured my feelings for her… Only when it could no longer be.

"Then…why aren't you down there with her?" Flit's tone was incredulous, though I knew he sensed something was amiss.

"Because she doesn't need me. She has Cloud."

"You frickin' crazy?" Lenny yelled, walking around me, his arms spread in a gesture of disbelief. His eyes were wide, searching me for answers. Answers I didn't have. "She was askin' allsorts about you back at the station! She wus worried outta her head over you; she didn't give a shit about him!"

"Well that's changed… She's got him now; like she always wanted." I closed my eyes as the first drops of rain began to fall onto my skin. In contrast to the time when the heavens had poured over Tifa and I, when the rain had been gentle and forgiving, this rain was hard and cruel.

Like the world I saw around me.

I opened my eyes. Lenny was staring at something over my shoulder, his mouth open. At first I thought it must be Flit, as I heard his footsteps walking away.

"Um…" Flit's voice was close. "Dude? Turn around."

I did so. Tifa was walking away from me, her figure blurred in the heavier falling rain.

She'd come to me.

"Tifa!" I shouted, my voice gripped by panic. The blood in my veins ran cold, as I felt it drain away from my face.

She stopped and turned around to give me a look; one that said 'I thought I knew you better'. I'd ruined things; in her terminology, I guess I'd 'let the door slam shut'. But I knew that there was a handle.

Her dark hair was hanging about her face, amber eyes were deep with sorrow and defeat. Suddenly, I didn't know what to say. He presence meant everything then, but I had greatly underestimated her feelings for me, it seemed. Such a fool. A cold hearted fool.

"Please Tifa… I have to talk to you."

She looked from Lenny, to Flit, then to me. "I've heard enough," she cried, and I could tell there were tears falling down her face, mingled with the rain. Her face toward the dying sun, barely still present at the horizon, she was lit in a golden amber radiance. She looked beautiful; enchantingly so.

"Please!" I cried out as she turned to walk away.

"Not here, Vincent!" She shook her head again, turning and heading back the was she had came. All I had to do was follow her, using what time I had to figure out what the hell I was going to say.

I barely noticed as several other officers emerged from the JPD HQ as she passed, her flooded hair flying behind her, arms drawn tight to trap the pain. I scarcely realised that Cloud, Annie, Peter, Barret and other A.S.P.S agents had come out onto their side of the bay. Tifa was stuck between two parties.

She stopped in the middle, and then walked to the end of a jetty at the harbour. Fishing boats bobbed wildly in the heightening waves, and buoys clanked in the distance. She came to a halt at the end of the wide jetty, whirling around to face me abruptly, water falling from the tips of her hair and dripping from her eyelashes.

"What do you want?" she called over the storm, her fingers gripping the sleeves of her sodden cardigan, pulling them over her knuckles. I did not falter. The cold of the rain had soaked through the fabric of my clothes, and it had brought me crashing into a new reality: Tifa's.

"I… want to explain something…" I answered, daring not come more than four steps closer to her.

"Why does there always have to be an explanation! There is nothing to explain!" she screamed, her voice cracking with sobs. I took a tentative step forwards. She took one back. "Don't! Just don't!" she shook her head wildly.

"Tifa, please…" I begged, outstretching a hand. "Be careful at the edge."

I couldn't formulate my words in my mouth. I'd never come this far before. I'd never had to confront my own feelings like this, never had to say things out loud. Tifa had come back, but I'd thrown away my chance. I couldn't let her just walk away from me without her knowing how I truly felt. After that, if she still wanted to, she could walk away, and I'd be happy; because at least just once in my life, I would have been honest to the both of us.

"You're so blind!" she told me, her arms gesturing wildly. She gripped her hair in her hands and wept, tumbling this way and that. I'd broken her down. Now all I had to do was pick her up and…

"Tifa please…" I strode forwards and pulled her into my arms. She did her best to resist me, hitting my chest with her fists, though I could tell she was not putting any heart into this fight. This was one fight she couldn't win by force alone.

"Why…" she whispered, her forehead on my shoulder, arms gripped my sodden shirt tightly. "Why can't you see that I don't want him…"

I felt my strength of resolve return. I could conquer this. I felt my heart soar. She didn't want him? After all this, after all she'd been through, she still wanted me. Oh Tifa, if only you knew.

"Why can't you see?" I pulled back and shook her shoulders lightly. She stared reluctantly into my eyes. "Everything I have done has been for you… I have tried so hard to reach you, Tifa… I hadn't expected to fall in love with you, but it happened none the less. And I don't regret anything I have done." I swallowed. Her lip quivered slightly as she waited. I leant in, resting my forehead on hers.

"Vincent…" she brought one shivering hand up to touch my face gently, her amber eyes alive with emotion. The rain poured on, trembling down her cheeks, across her lips… Tifa.

I leant forwards to kiss her, drawing her body close to mine, so I could feel our heartbeats merge into one. As I closed the distance between our lips, I had one last thing to say. "Tifa, I love you."

Then our lips met. Everything else vanished; the pounding rain, the tolling bells in the buoys, the distant rumble of thunder, even the sounds of people cheering from far away. All that was in my world was her.

Her mouth trembled against mine, and when she touched me, I felt thrills shoot down my spine. I wanted to be swallowed up by the feeling that was consuming me; making my chest burn with warm fire, and my senses escalate beyond any conceivable level. I'd won this time.

Tifa: honesty

When I was finally able to pull myself away enough to speak, the words never came. Vincent was honest whenever he did have something important or meaningful to say. His words had hit me hard. Nobody had ever been that honest to me before. Not Cloud, No one.

I think its one of the main reasons I fell for Vincent. Never a wasted word, moment, kiss…

Oh god Vincent, I love you too. I'd found you again, and I wasn't going to let go now. You're the only one I want.

I looked into his eyes, as they seemed to burn with compassion, wondering what was going through his mind. I gripped the soaked fabric of his shirt in my fingers and felt heat rise to my face as I felt the warmth of his skin beneath it; so close, so real.

His arms tightened, and I could do nothing to suppress the shivers that spread from his wandering fingertips. My breath caught in my throat and I swallowed awkwardly. I allowed my head to rest on his shoulder, my forehead nestled into his neck. His hand journeyed up my waist to my hair, stroking it absently. His lips came close to my ear.

"Tifa I…" he swallowed. "I'm sorry to say this… but…" when he failed to continue I raised my head to look at him.

Beneath that gaze I saw the same look I had seen in his eyes on the plains, where it had also rained, where everything had been thrown into the open, like it had done again. I saw want; not lust, just a painful yearning. Lifting my hand to touch his cheek, I thought over what I would say. What could I lose now? The words were practically throbbing inside my head, so much, that I was surprised he couldn't hear them.

"It's ok Vincent… I feel it too…" I murmured into his ear. He seemed to exhale with both relief and revelation.

"I… I want you Tifa." although I had been expecting his words to a degree, it still sent my blood rushing to the surface of my skin, colouring my cheeks. "Please… never leave me again…"

"I promise I won't leave you, I swear…"

We were both breathless, and I could feel the cold getting to me, rainwater soaking through my clothes and chilling my skin. Being so close to Vincent, especially being as emotional as I was, was taking its toll on me. My heart was racing, and I was trembling. I could feel body heat through the sodden fabric of his shirt, and his warm breathing on my cheek, as we stood close.

Hard wire muscles relaxed into the embrace, and I can't help but want to know what it feels like to feel his skin trembling in anticipation under my wandering fingertips, the way he would feel against my mouth, breathless and wanting, mumbled words under heavy sheets, flushed faces…

Oh god Vincent, it's you, it has to be you.

My minds travelling faster than I can comprehend right now, and I think you knew, Vincent. Watching me carefully, as though you could see what I could see in my eyes. You, at my door, eyes fearful yet controlled, wet, desperate; Heated arguments and then soft meaningful smiles; A stolen kiss in the rain, a bullet wound, then the words you told me. I won't forget them Vincent, I promise. I won't forget all of these moments…

…Because, Vincent, you told me that memory is the only thing that can endure so long.

It was an hour or so from the pier, and we'd run to your house in the rain, hand in hand. Stumbling through the door like the devil himself was after us, yet you didn't allow me to catch my breath before taking me into your arms and up the stairs.

Not enough time to turn on any lights, yet I could see you perfectly through the darkness, with a little aid from the amber street lights filtering through the curtains. I could still hear the waves pounding on the shore, and the clanging of the buoys bobbing on the current.

I recalled the shouts of people, calling us back, but we'd ignored them. I wondered if they had the sensibility not to follow. Because we wouldn't have answered the door, even if we'd heard it.

Whereas before I could feel cold, wet fabric, I felt warm, dampened skin beneath me. Too many buttons for my faltering grip as I struggle to undo his shirt, and it's hard to believe I'm not dreaming, that it might really be Vincent's shaking hand trying to untuck my shirt.

I've wanted him so long, it feels like a dream, but it's nothing but real when I cry out his name, feel his mouth on mine beneath tangled sheets, skin drenched in sweat. Like my dreams, Vincent smiled down at me, taking me into his arms and falling down against the pillows. Like my dreams, he murmurs 'I love you' against my hair, and his lips graze my skin.

But unlike my dreams, something goes wrong.

Vincent: Letting Go

Lying with you in the dark, as though neither of us had a care in the world, I could feel your heart beating inside your chest. And I couldn't help but thinking that we did have cares; so many troubles laden on us, that I was surprised both of us could stand and still walk tall every day.

I lose track of time.

Yet I can't help but worry. I have you now, Tifa. Cloud is back, and the ShinRa threat momentarily exposed. Peter said that they were using a kind of microchip to control people who had been exposed to mako in the past, and I can't help but wonder if I'll be next.

I hold you a little tighter. I don't want to hurt you. Now that I have you, I don't want to do anything that could jeopardise your safety. Being here, near a so recent ShinRa threat, one I am still not sure is over, is doing that. And I know that if I get hurt, if I die, I'll only be making you suffer again.

Selfish things, really. But I've finally got what I'd been subconsciously looking for, for so long.

I remember when I heard that you were in trouble in Kalm. My mind immediately settled on the strong female I knew and admired from AVALANCHE. Tall, graceful, a woman with a good heart, and yet you were venerable. Because you were always too trusting.

And it was these traits that made me draw the comparison between you, and the last woman I would have died for. A woman I did die for, in a sense. Back then, I was too closed to admit the attraction, told myself that I was just making useless connections between redundant memories.

But things change.

Tifa stirs in my arms. It's just before daybreak, and the storm died long ago. I can hear the occasional call of a seagull, the whisper of waves on the sand, the muted shout of fishermen at the docks.

I wished every day could be like this. Oh hell, I wish it could.

I call your name softly, and you stir again. I sense a moment of panic in you as you struggle to recall where you are, and then you see me and relax. You touch my face softly and smile.

"What time is it?" she asks, gazing up at my ceiling.

"4am, Tifa…" the red light of my LED clock glares out of the twilight. I wish, oh I wish it could be 4am forever.

"I wonder if they've missed us," she laughs slightly, still sleepy.

"I'm sure we can deal with them." I smile in return, my fingers trailing along the skin of her back, revelling in her warmth. She shudders a little.

"The problems still haven't gone away have they?" I feel her sigh. I sense the little bubble around us melt away, the one that was able to keep everything out, if only for a little while.

Cloud: admittance

He saw her follow him. He saw her running, saw them running, their hands conjoined tightly, away from the rain, the people, and out of sight and memory. Vincent and Tifa? He didn't understand. He recalled being caught in a cross fire between A.S.P.S and ShinRa several months ago… after that, nothing. A huge, empty void, an irreplaceable blank of white noise that only vanished a few minutes before.

Why was Tifa here? He hadn't asked her to join; He'd wanted to protect the last thing he felt he had in the world. He knew she'd find out eventually, inevitably, and that she would be furious with him. It was a risk he was willing to take, though.

Yet Vincent was the one who surprised him the most. While locked in his office, under the careful watch of a certain Peter Fordston, he found a small book bound by brown leather in his desk drawer, and reading it, he found out many things he never knew about Vincent. He didn't know how the diary came to be there; he could only assume it had been placed there when he had not been himself, as Peter had put it. Surprisingly, he felt pained to see Tifa falling for someone else.

He knew he couldn't expect her to wait for him all of her life. She was young, and beautiful, but most of all, she was strong. Stronger even than he'd been in the end. She'd always been the one to hold him together with support and softly spoken words. She knew him best, after all.

Though it seemed she was getting to know Vincent too, pretty well, he could only assume from the diary.

'…Tifa once used to feel for him, more than she thinks I know. A man like that does not deserve a woman like her. Not that I'm saying that I deserve her any more. I cannot begin to wonder why she feels for me so; I can only guess.'

Cloud hadn't let go of the diary all evening since he'd discovered it. In its only entry it hinted the existence of another diary, one that had more sinister contents. Cloud itched to read it.

He realised suddenly that he didn't trust Vincent as much as he had thought. A part of his mind wandered back to scenes of Vincent's old daemons, creatures that shared his body, bursting forth in the throng of battle, massacring whoever stood in his way. He questioned Vincent's ability to keep them in check, though he claimed that he was no longer their victim.

Somehow he doubted that.

Then of course there was that old protective streak in him. He used to play hero to everyone; it gave him somewhat of an escape, a diversion to all of his problems, in helping people to run away from theirs.

He slumped back in his bed, staring up at the dark ceiling. He was being held in the infirmary for observation after the microchip. The doctor wanted to keep an eye on him for lingering psychological effects.

The only thing lingering in Cloud's mind was a growing hate for Vincent. Jealousy was not a word he would chose to describe it, but yet he was resentful somehow, that Tifa had decided to fall for someone so… unorthodox.

Tifa…

The ceiling shifted shapes, changing colours, mutating into other forms and spectral figures. He was gazing at a ceiling made of metal now, and he could hear voices: Voices that were telling him to do things.

'Finish what Tom Eastwick couldn't.'

Then everything went black.

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Tifa: costumes

"How are you feeling?" He asked me softly, his hands touching my shoulders gently, lips pressed to my temple. I lean back into him, sighing.

"Fine, I guess." I answer. He knows as well I do that I am not being totally truthful. I felt as though everything was inexplicably out of my hands; Because as much as I love Vincent, the second I step outside of his door, there'll be the world with all of their questions, looks, and comments.

Then the ShinRa problem: Manipulation using computers? I couldn't understand it all. Friends turning into enemies, and enemies masquerading as friends…

I put my head in my hands, unable to prevent my shoulders trembling with barely-contained sobs, yet as faithful as Vincent is, he was there to hold me together. His arms came around my shuddering ribcage, as thought I'd fall apart from the tears. He mumbled words into my hair, rocking my form gently, telling me it'd all be fine.

It was then I knew how desperate things were; Vincent wasn't an optimist: he was a realist. Nothing is ever all right in the end is it? Not without a sacrifice.

And my sacrifice was the greatest of all.

I prised his arms away and stood up, taking a few uncertain breaths. I would have to go and face things. Hiding away and feeling sorry for myself solved nothing, I knew from experience. I stood in front of the mirror. My hand was drawn to the healing scar of the bullet wound. A tribute I would wear for the rest of my life, showing how far I'd come. Above that was the long, crescent-shaped scar, left by Sephiroth's masamune. Two marks or two separate scrapes with death… the grim reaper's tally chart.

I see Vincent watching me sadly in the reflection. He sighs and stands, pulling on his clothes as though they were a costume; hiding his scars and who he really was beneath layers of fabric. I feel the same way as I dress into clothes that were left to dry, but still hold the scent of fallen rain, and traces of the water.

He comes to stand behind me, arms tight around my waist and I can just for a moment sink into his embrace.

Oh Vincent…

I'm sorry.

After the last piece of clothing covers me, I feel the impending journey weighing down on me. I feel angry with myself; you have a man who loves you, you shouldn't be sad. But yet I can't help it.

For fear of shattering whatever security there is felt between us, we say nothing as we leave the house. He takes my hand and squeezes it reassuringly. I want to turn back and re-enter the house, but I know that the only reason everyone allowed us this night was because it would the last for a long time: the first and the last.

The day has only just broken, and it's cold outside. There is a biting wind coming up off of the sea and I draw my free arm around myself. Vincent's hand tightens his grip on mine. He's telling me to be strong.

If not for me, then I'll do it for you Vincent.

Tifa: the last stand

We walked together towards the bay, admiring the morning together as though nothing would be waiting for us when we, reached out destination. All the while I felt that Vincent wanted to talk to me, but he couldn't bring himself to say it. Eventually, he pulled me to stop, not looking at me, his eyes trained on the dawn. I twitched my hand in his, to let him know I was listening.

"Tifa… will you…" he shook his head. "When this is all over will you… go back to Kalm?" he looked crest fallen, as though that wasn't what he wanted to say to me. I shrugged.

"There is nothing for me there. But I guess I'd feel safer with a new start." I sigh, and tug on his hand, carrying on walking. "But I'll think about it when the time comes."

I smiled encouragingly. He mumbled an ok, seeming to follow me with reluctance.

We arrived at the A.S.P.S base entrance and everything seemed normal; the guards let us in, people were bustling around trying to sort out the rubble and the bodies, the chaos that had ensued after last night's battle.

17 Corel agents dead, 31 Junon Agents, 27 of whom were ShinRa controlled.

We'd passed Barret on our way in, and he'd winked at me and gave Vincent his version of a pat on the back, which nearly sent him head first into a nearby wall. Annie was helping with the labouring, and Peter was helping the still-dazed victims of the attack.

I'd wanted to get right to helping, but we were seated in the conference room until someone from the Corel base could get here to debrief us.

"Are you worried?" Vincent asks me, leaning forwards in his seat.

"About ShinRa? I guess so… but Cloud's ok, right?" I was slightly concerned for him, as I had walked out soon after being reunited with him.

"We've sorted out this base. And everyone's getting his or her chips removed right now. Cloud's is different from the others so his will take a little longer…" Vincent smiled at me reassuringly.

When Cloud walked in soon after, I shared a confused glance with Vincent. He looked rigid from lack of sleep. Locking the door behind him, he smiled awkwardly before running a hand idly through his hair.

Wasn't he meant to be in the medical wing?

My eyes travelled from the locked door to Cloud, then to Vincent and back. None offered me a solution, an escape, or even justification. Why now?

"I'm sorry to say this…" he began, walking over to his seat and reaching for something beneath the desk. "But… One of you isn't leaving here alive. You can't stand in the way of ShinRa and the Turks and get away with it." He was reaching for a gun.

Vincent's hand shot out to hold mine, and the other fumbled beneath the folds of his coat. In a flurry of clothing and metal, a gun was pointing at me, and another at Cloud.

"Shoot me, Vincent. You know you can't win this." Cloud was smirking now. "Shoot and she gets shot, don't shoot, and she gets shot. It's too late to shout for help now." I felt nausea rise inside of me. This couldn't be happening to me. Not now. "I'm betting that right about now, you're wishing you hadn't of snuck off last night, when you should have been keeping watch on me, instead."

"You don't have to do this, Cloud…" Vincent's voice was slow, and controlled, though Tifa detected the tremor in his hand, gripping hers tightly. Surely I'd wake up in Vincent's bedroom, gasping for breath from a nightmare, then fall back into his arms and…

Cloud cocked his gun. the sound seemed a thousand times louder in that empty conference room, with my life at the end of the barrel. I suddenly thought of Aeris; he'd done something similar with her, before she died. He'd raised his sword above his head and… but he'd come out of the trance.

Somehow, I knew I wouldn't be as lucky.

"Tifa…" Vincent choked. "I… I can't…" his eyes travelled quickly from me to Cloud, full of fear. He was telling me that he couldn't do anything to save me. We were stuck in this position now. No way out.

"I know." I swallowed, resigned. I realised I was going to die. No matter what Vincent did.

"Please, Cloud." Vincent said desperately. "Let her go."

"No." he said. "Time's up."

I screwed my eyes shut. I heard five shots fired, and I felt two.

Cloud hit the floor at the same moment as I did. He was dead as he fell, but I was not. I could see the overhead lights dimming above me, and then Vincent. I was being lifted into his arms, and every movement sent a jolt of pain through my body.

"Tifa stay with me…" his voice was saying breathlessly. I felt the air rushing about me as he was clearly hurrying me to the medical wing.

I was being placed on a bed.

"Please, oh god don't leave me…"

"Mr Valentine you're going to have to step back."

"NO! Tifa don't die please!"

V…Vincent?

"We'll need some stitches for these wounds. Ripped right through on one, the other still has some slug left inside."

"Lung puncture and contact with the heart's outer muscle, severe internal bleeding and ruptures."

"Get off me! Let me see her- she's dying!"

Vincent… stay calm… I'm going to be fine.

"Mr Valentine let us do our job!"

"Oh god, Tifa please…"

I felt a warm presence nearby, and I opened my eyes. I could see Vincent being wrestled off by two large security guards, I could see the doctors, but more strangely than that, I could see myself. Bleeding, colouring the doctor's hands red.

Yet I felt so calm inside.

The machine that was ticking my life away was still going, yet I could tell that I had so little time….

And I was back. The pain was back. No more doctors this time, though. Just Vincent. And a clock that read 3:57am. I was breathing with aid of a ventilator and it hurt with each lungful of air.

"Tif…" he was saying softly, his voice thick with tears. He wasn't looking at me. He was watching my hand as he held it in his. " If you can hear me… then… please let me know. We… don't have much time."

My beeper was still going steady. I gave his hand the slightest of squeezes. It felt as though I'd had to carry the weight of the world in one action.

His eyes lifted to meet mine, and I saw so much sadness there, that I wanted to hold him in my arms and never let him go, but I knew I didn't have the strength. He swallowed and looked as though he was going to say something, but gave up instead. He gave me a smile that deserved a medal of bravery.

"Annie, Barret and Cid have been to visit." He said eventually, as brightly as he could manage. Something told me that wasn't what he had meant to say. I blinked slowly to let him know I heard him. He smiled faintly.

"The doctors said you have little time left," he told me honestly. I felt my eyes fill up with tears. "One bullet punctured your lung, and the other… it damaged your heart. They said," he took a deep breath. "You had less than a day to live."

I sighed, and my tears fell softly down my cheeks. I cried for Vincent, and everyone I would be leaving behind. I'd miss them. Why did Vincent deserve to lose someone else? I couldn't help but wonder what would have become of Vincent and I, had none of this happened. Would me marry? Would we have children of our own?

Then I remembered, Vincent.

Before we came here, you'd wanted to ask me something. You couldn't say it. You'd asked me a strange question, one that couldn't warrant your nervousness. "Tifa… will you…when this is all over will you… go back to Kalm?" Perhaps what it should have been was, "will you… should me get married one day?"

At 3:59am I felt my breathing constrict, and my chest burn excruciatingly. The beeper was starting to let of a high-pitched tone, telling the doctors I was going into cardiac arrest.

With tears falling down his face, Vincent leaned over me and turned the machine off. It went on in silence. He took away my ventilator and kissed my burning lips softly, lifting me gently into his arms, and I held on as best I could. I could taste his tears.

"I love you Tifa." He murmured as best he could. I let out a small cry.

I knew no more when the clock's digits changed to 4am.

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Fully edited! Wow, this stuff is much more angsty that my other work.