"Well, you can make me come That doesn't make you Jesus"-- Tori Amos, Precious Things

Tifa Lockhart lay in bed, fighting sleep. Her resistance was borne from the fear that if she was to dream, it would be about him.

They weren't nightmares, far from it. He wasn't trying to kill her or her friends, and he wasn't tormenting her-at least not in any painful or sinister way. Every night for going on at least two weeks, she would dream about him doing things to her body that she never thought could feel so good, and he did them slowly. If it were Cloud or Vincent in his place she could make sense of her dream-self's eager response to the attention and the desperate need for release when she woke and finished herself off. But it wasn't either of them. It was Sephiroth, and this was made all the more disturbing by the knowledge that while Cloud defeated him four years before above the ruined Shinra Tower, something in the back of her mind told her that he could never truly die. He could return any time he chose if what he wanted from the physical world was important enough to him or the virus he chose to believe was his mother.

It wasn't the startling clarity of the dreams that worried her. In them, she experienced everything as if it were happening in real time. She felt every touch, tasted every kiss, delighted in the deep, rich vibrations against her as he spoke and explored every inch of her body. It wasn't the idea that in these dreams he didn't take her like the brute she imagined him to be, but softly like a lover, gently drawing out his kisses and caresses. It wasn't even the nagging feeling that the dreams weren't so much created by her mind as inserted into it.

No, what concerned her and shamed her the most was how hungrily she wanted him in these dreams. Awake, she would have used every ounce of her strength to beat him to death for the pain he caused and for everything he had taken from her, and then shrieked in triumph as the Lifestream devoured his body, if it even accepted him in the first place. She would likely shudder in revulsion at his touch regardless of how pleasing he was to the eye. He was evil, insane and her mortal enemy; she had more than enough reason to be disgusted by him. He killed her father, destroyed her life and made her a desperate renegade. However, her subconscious told her differently, and what she found truly alarming was that even as she struggled to stay awake, deep down she hoped that the coming dream would be even better than the one before it.

It was that thought that was on her mind when she finally lost the battle and gave herself over to sleep.

The dream always began the same way. She sat on a linen-upholstered bench in front of a vanity in a room she didn't recognize, possibly some inn that her mind invented, when she would suddenly feel his presence as if she had willed him into existence. He wore his leather trench coat but without the heavy steel pauldrons. That told her that he wanted to be able to undress without too much fuss. It certainly wasn't because he didn't want to intimidate her.

What he did next was never the same from dream to dream. The first time, she didn't turn around, she just watched him approach and stand tall behind her. The suggestions he whispered to her bordered on profane but were still reserved enough to be unspeakably erotic, especially considering the way his turquoise eyes glittered as he spoke. All the while his hands trailed lightly over her skin, fingers tracing lines along her jaw, neck and shoulders. He had left her with that, retreating out of her sight before she woke up so aroused she had to settle things on her own.

Each dream brought them closer together, made them bolder. Caresses grew more intimate, kisses deeper. Their hands and mouths brought each other to orgasm so many times, but they had yet to have actual intercourse. Such an act, as rapturous as it would be, almost seemed like an afterthought.

This time he sat, straddling the bench so that his chest was flush with her arm, his movements fluid and graceful. The heat from his body had a profound effect on her and without willing it, her hand slipped an inch or so between her thighs.

He picked up a hairbrush from the vanity and placed a soft kiss on her shoulder. "May I?"

She was rather taken aback by the idea of him wanting to brush her hair and being so damn polite about it. The gesture was just so tender. She wanted to ask why he was being that romantic, but instead shifted on the bench so that her back was to him.

"You may," she whispered.

Her survival instinct goaded her to push him away and run just as it always did. However, something just as primal kept her there, sighing softly as he ran the brush slowly through her hair. His fingers glided over her skin as he worked, and that reminded her that undiluted lust was fully separate from honor, anger or shame. It was this lust that turned her subconscious into her erotic playground, banishing anger and thoughts of revenge, and letting her indulge in desires she never knew she had and would have hated herself for acknowledging if she did know.

After several minutes he grew bored with his task, so he laid the brush on the table and pushed her hair away from her neck. Heat bloomed between her legs and shot up through her when she felt his lips press against the skin. One hand encircled her waist while the other played with her hair.

"Let me please you," he whispered. His warm breath drifted over her skin, earning him a delicious shudder.

"Why?"

"Because it amuses me." His maddeningly soft kisses and random flickers of his tongue left a trail of fire as he made his way down her neck and along her shoulder. She reached up and captured a lock of his hair, lazily twirling it around her finger. For a brief moment she thought she actually felt him smirk against her skin. Typical of him, but the movement of his lips felt so good.

He was an arrogant bastard and tried to give the impression that he felt nothing, but she knew better. She scooted back on the bench to move herself closer to him and felt that he was already rigidly erect. He exhaled sharply and tightened his hold on her when she slowly ground against him and ran her free hand along the underside of his thigh. She knew how much he wanted her, and that belied his affected apathy. How adorably na?e of him to think he was the one in control. It was her dream, her rules.

She stood up abruptly and turned around to face him. His pale skin was flushed and hunger burned in his feline eyes making him an exquisite sight indeed. She reached out and let her fingers drift over his face, down his cheek and along his jaw, coming to rest under his chin. It was barely detectable, but his face softened under her touch, making him look almost vulnerable. She studied him for a moment, thinking it a shame that a man so cruel and hateful could be so incredibly attractive. It wasn't fair.

He rose from the bench and moved toward her, and she backed away toward the bed, teasing him. The predatory smirk on his lips told her he didn't mind that at all.

"Take off your coat," she said with an enticing smile. "Stay a bit."

Without a word, he did as instructed, unfastening the buckles and sliding the leather over his shoulders. The coat slipped to the floor, forgotten. He went a step further and began removing the belt and straps across his chest, his eyes never leaving hers.

The task was a complicated one even for him, which gave Tifa time to just step back and admire him. The people who thought The World's Enemy was some hulking behemoth would be disappointed. He was built more like a dancer, muscular, lean and graceful, the kind of body a woman could stare at forever and never get bored. He truly was a thing of beauty.

The belts soon joined the coat on the floor, and this time she didn't move when he came toward her. Instead, she reached out and let her hands and lips roam over his body, committing every mound and curve to memory. When she nuzzled against his neck, kissing and tasting in the same way he did just moments before, she discovered that his hair smelled faintly like incense. He rewarded her with a soft moan and wrapped his arms around her, pulling her close. His hands covered her buttocks, not squeezing or grasping but just feeling her. His rock hard arousal pressed against her stomach.

"You like teasing me, don't you?" His voice was heavy with need.

"Can the act, Sephiroth, you know you love being teased," she replied, sliding her arms around his neck and weaving her fingers through his hair.

Without warning he lifted her, insinuating his hands under her thighs to encourage her to wrap her legs around him. Anger flashed in his eyes as he sat down on the edge of the bed, holding her firmly in his lap. "Don't test me, Lockhart," he growled, giving a hint of what could happen when a madman was taunted.

"Or what?" She gave no hint that his change of mood affected her at all. Instead she traced the outline of his lips with her fingers.

As quickly as it appeared, his anger dissipated and he brightened with amusement. "Nothing frightens you, does it?"

"With regards to you?" She took his hand in hers and dragged it slowly up her torso then over her ample breast, encouraging him to touch. He eagerly complied. "The worst thing you can do is kill me, and you can only do that once."

"Are you sure about that?" He took the hem of her white tank and drew it up and over her head, leaving her to finish the job as he worked at the front clasp of her bra. Both garments were tossed aside and landed near his discarded clothing. He returned both hands to her breasts, massaging lightly and teasing her nipples.

"You're so smug," she mused, one hand wrapping around his neck while the other spread over the side of his face, taking possession of it. "Maybe you should put that pretty mouth of yours to better use than bragging."

He took the cue and captured her lips with his own. His kisses were slow and deliberate, making her shiver in anticipation of the next one even as she enjoyed the one that came before it. He applied enough pressure to coax her mouth open and slid his tongue between her lips.

She whimpered breathlessly and matched his ministrations. It was so wrong for this to feel as good as it did, but she was past the point of caring. She let her hands roam over his biceps, savoring the hardness under his smooth skin, his unique, enticing taste and the scent of leather.

He broke the kiss. "Maybe I should." Anyone else would have interpreted the look in his eyes as malicious, but she had been with him in her dreams long enough that she recognized it as his own peculiar brand of playfulness. That aroused her just as much as any touch or kiss. She tilted her head back, giving him full access to her throat, which he enthusiastically accepted. He kissed and licked down the column, tracing slow, wet circles with his tongue in the hollow where her collarbones came together, lapping at the sweat that gathered there.

The fire was stoked as his lips made their way down her sternum. Her hips moved of their own accord when his mouth closed over her nipple, laving and circling it with his tongue. She rubbed against his erection, sending both of them through the roof. He suddenly lifted her as if she weighed no more than a few pounds and soon had her on her back, his mouth never leaving her breast during the transition.

She could tell he wanted to completely let go by the way his body shuddered against her, but his moves remained gentle and seductive. Knowing that she turned him on enough to unleash himself completely but that he still had enough interest in pleasing her that he held himself back just for her was enough to drive her crazy. He wanted to make it last, savor every sensation, and she was more than happy to let him.

He raised himself up and admired her for a moment, then unzipped her skirt, pulling it down over her hips along with her panties. She shifted under him to accommodate him. His hands grazed teasingly over her legs as he pulled the barrier garments off of them and tossed them aside. He wasted no time removing her boots and socks, leaving her completely naked and vulnerable before him.

"Now what was that you wanted me to do with my mouth?" He lifted one of her legs over his shoulder and kissed the sensitive skin of her inner thigh.

She moaned and arched her back from the sensation of his skilled lips and tongue, and the knowledge of what she knew he would do next. That was all the encouragement he needed to work his way upward and claim her, spreading her legs wider to give himself better access.

The shock of his hot mouth against her made her cry out and grab a fistful of his hair. He chuckled as if in triumph, and the vibrations from that only served to inflame her further. She threw her head back in ecstasy when she felt him move. His tongue laved her and dipped between her labia to lap up the moisture. He pulled away long enough to tell her how good she tasted before he returned to the torturously slow rhythm.

His hands brushed over her body, drawing out cries and erotic curses, but he stopped when her movements and moans told him she was getting close to orgasm.

"Damn you, don't stop!" Her voice was tortured, but he pretended not to notice. Instead he rose from the bed and stared down at her.

"Patience, love," he said as his hands drifted over his torso and rested on his belt. "When you've been waiting as long as I have, you do learn patience."

She didn't close her legs, but instead opted to give him a full view, knowing that the sight of her naked and wet before him had a profound effect. She reached down between her legs and massaged herself, loving the sight of his eyes widening and his breath accelerating. He quickly undressed himself the rest of the way, and she stared hungrily at his upward-pointing erection. She quickly took the advantage as he bore down on her, using her legs and arms to flip him over and land him on his back.

"I don't have time for patience," she rasped, climbing on top of him. "Or maybe I do." She took hold of his cock and guided him into her, but only enough that the tip was submerged. She moved against him with shallow thrusts.

His hands clamped down on her hips, stopping her torturous rhythm. He held her still against him, panting as if he had just run a marathon. "You play a dangerous game, woman," he replied harshly, pulling her down onto him and easing himself inside. She rewarded him with a drawn out, breathless whimper. "Do you really think you can win?"

"No." A grin spread across her face at the feel of him stretching her, filling her. "I expect this to be a draw." She bore down on him, accepting him completely.

She closed her legs, trapping his narrow hips between them, then began moving along his length to her own slow, enticing tempo. He surrendered control to her. He would have been wrong not to.

"Oh gods, you feel so good," she said, her voice caught between a whimper and a breathless cry. The feeling was indescribable. She rode him with slow, sharp thrusts, increasing her pace as the sensations built. Soon she had worked herself into a controlled frenzy, her senses filled not only with her own enjoyment but his, drinking in his intense, lustful gaze as his hips rolled against her.

Her orgasm took her without warning, and she cried out to the gods as the delicious feeling coursed through her whole body.

He grasped her hips and drove himself into her insistently, satisfied that he had already brought her to completion. She continued to pant and groan as she shuddered around him, which enflamed him beyond reason. He threw his head back and let out a growling cry as his own orgasm overtook him.

She awoke with a start, the waves of pleasure from her nocturnal orgasm still washing over her. Her hand had made its way between her legs, and she rubbed herself until the contractions subsided.

She lay there for a moment, moving her fingers against herself, drawing out every last sensation. She lay stomach-down against her bed, panting and satisfied.

Each time the dream came to her, she shed more and more of her shame and hate. She learned to accept the fact that her subconscious was at odds with her higher mind, and that there was nothing she could do about it without help. Even as she basked in the afterglow, she made a mental note to see a therapist to try to make sense of her desire for her most hated enemy. This was unnatural, and she needed to find out why she felt so strongly for him. But that could wait until morning. Completely relaxed, she surrendered again to sleep, which was peaceful and dreamless this time around.

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In her own extremities, she didn't notice the presence outside her window, the black and silver-clad calamity that perched himself on the ledge.

He had latched onto her mind with the intention of using her to bring himself back from immateriality. All life was connected to the planet he had become an intrinsic part of, and he had learned how to manipulate energy to bring about physical existence, namely his own. She was one of many, and he didn't even remember why he specifically chose her out of so many other suitable conduits. Maybe it was a way to hurt the puppet.

He was certainly pleased with the results of his choice. He did not expect her mind to be as strong as her body, and he certainly wasn't banking on her suppressed desire being so insistent. He had to acknowledge that he was once again just human enough to feel need, and what man could resist the lure of such a beautiful woman extending that luscious invitation? For that reason, he had to keep going to her even though his goal of physical rebirth had been realized. Whatever end he hoped to achieve could wait while he indulged himself, acting in any way her subconscious dictated, pleasing her more than the puppet could ever hope to.

He was well aware of the unusual tightness of his pants, and made his way down from the ledge, headed somewhere private where he could see to his own gratification. Perhaps the day would come when he could take her in the flesh instead of running off to release himself like a pathetic boy. A woman like that deserved to be satisfied. She deserved to have her body lavished with attention that only he could properly give her. He would see to it that when the time came, she would go to him willingly, no longer bound to her hatred for him and lust for revenge. He would happily help her live out her dreams, so to speak.

He was so pleased with himself that he didn't even give a thought to the irony of him being a more than willing puppet in his own right.