Disclaimer: I don't own FF7 or its characters.
Brief warning: This fic has DARK THEMES and not only hints yaoi, but eventually end in a yaoi threesome. If you are uncomfortable with any of these things then this is not the fic for you.
Original Post Date: May 30, 2009
Edited: March 20, 2013
He could die and Sephiroth wouldn't care, not with the way those maddened green eyes were looking at him.
Gods those eyes. There was something else, something inhuman looking out—
The faint buzzing he'd been hearing all day suddenly intensified, but he gritted his teeth and lunged at Sephiroth while the general had turned back to the Jenova creature he called "Mother." If he could just get him down, knock him out then maybe, maybe he could be saved. And the Buster sword was up, the flat of the blade swinging, whistling through the air—
And Sephiroth's enraged eyes met his in the reflection of the glass before he crumpled.
As those poisoned green eyes rolled up, Zack thought for one terrified instant that he'd killed the man, but no, he could see and hear the shallow, hitched breaths that lightly lifted the man's chest from his prone position. He only had a second to feel true relief before the unholy shrieking began. Enraged, ear-splitting cries that rattled his mind and seeped into his very being.
My son my son what have you done my son you've hurt him filthy treacherous human filth!
Gritting his teeth against the onslaught, Zack lifted his sword and fought the sudden fluctuation of hate, anger, and ragethat was pressuring his skull like a physical weight. He met Jenova's glowing red eyes through the glass of her prison defiantly.
That was his mistake.
Suddenly there was glass; broken, shattered, sharp glass careening outwards, bending under the force of Jenova like paper and he felt himself yanked forward into the very face of the ragelongingthirst echoing in his head.
My child mine my cells mine Reunion we need you need Him join Reunion join me JOIN ME.
The Buster Sword—oh gods, when had he dropped it?—was swept away and shattered into tiny pieces by a thrashing tentacle and Zack was left wondering with a sense of helplessness if that was what had a hold of him too. His arms strained against the tight hold winding round his upper body. He found himself inches away, face to face with that seemingly dead creature, but his mind told him that she was very much alive and she was pissed, wanting, aching, needing the Reunion—
Zack screamed as she reached into his mind, her dark presence creeping in, planting that needragelongingdesire inside, oh gods, inside where even he couldn't reach—
Child my child my cells my vessel part of me do not fight me join me take your rightful place my son
—at some point he realized he had brokenly started the chant and gods—gods he couldn't remember why, who he was, what he was fighting—
My child my children do not fight me the Reunion the Stars the Cosmos the Great Darkness this world this vessel help me take help me feed destroy.
Zack made a wordless sound of fear and anger as Jenova attempted to peel his mind like an onion; she was working her way down, sliding herself in layer by layer as she fought his resistance, feeding him lies. He didn't want this, didn't want her, only Sephiroth back and normal and in one piece. Smiling, sane, beautiful, and awkward, but wholeunbrokenhuman.
And Jenova paused in her mental onslaught, her alien mind brushing at the echoes of his last thought. The puzzled feeling caused her to loosen him up enough to begin breathing again and he panted in her grip, thankful for the brief respite. He took as many large gulps as possible and then he was tensing, breath seizing in his lungs again as more tentacles traveled freely over his form, touching, feeling, exploring and terrifying him in a manner that hatred could only have hoped to achieve.
And suddenly there was no shrieking, just that gentle curiosity and sly calculation lurking on the edges of his consciousness—
My child…show me my child Mother is here Mother is sorry show her show her what you desire.
Unbidden, her words conjured up images of himself and Sephiroth; him leaning over the taller man while he was working, stealing glances at the stoic male and dreaming of seeing that stern face gentle and warm with soft green eyes—
Yes show me child show me show us him him Him
And then the image shifted to include Cloud; shy, timid little Cloud tentatively watching Sephiroth and himself with awe, his sky blue eyes wide and cheeks flushed with pleasure as they praised them on his mission successes—
NonoNONONONO filthy human traitorous disgusting corrupting filth not worthy of my sons pitiful weak creature.
And the mock gentleness was abruptly changed to something like hatespitepain and there were tentacles crawling everywhere—in his mouth, under his clothes, and then she was pushing, seeking, and taking in a mad parody of—gods, stopitstopitSTOPITSTOPIT!
My cells my Reunion my flesh shed this weak shell and sail the Great Darkness to feed to rest Reunion Rebirth
"ZACK!" Hands were suddenly grasping his arms and it took him a disoriented moment between Jenova's shrieking to hear the panic in Cloud's voice and realize that she was still there in the tank. Watching waiting, seeking his mind, and raging at the fact that Cloud, a filthy unworthy human had been the one to free him from her grasp—
"C'mon, Zack!" Cloud cried, shaking him as hard as possible.
She'd retreated when Cloud had touched him, but it was only a matter of time—
DISGUSTING PITIFUL WORTHLESS DOOMED CREATURE LEAVE MY SON LEAVE MY SONS DO NOT CORRUPT THEM THE REUNION WILL NOT FAIL WE MUST BE WHOLE
He knew his scream had startled the poor kid, but his only focus right now was to ride out the pain and try to ignore her words of joining and Reunion and deathdestructiontriumph—
"I-I can't!" he moaned, fisting his hands in his hair. Focus, he needed to focus goddammit.
"Kill her Cloud! Get rid of Jenova!" Energy spent, he collapsed on his hands and knees panting, vaguely wondering at the clothing still on his frame despite the fact that he'd felt her, that disgusting, poisonous influence invading him.
Shattering glass caught his attention and he weakly raised his head to find Cloud setting the Buster Sword aside to grasp long handfuls of mako-stiffened hair; he almost cried out a warning, but despite her cries and desperate mental screaming, Jenova was physically dead and defenseless—
My son my my son the human filth is touching me do not let him hurt Mother defend me kill it kill it kill it
"You're not my mother, bitch," he croaked, throat raw from his own screams. Cloud gave one final heave of her body and sent her over the railing into the mako pit below.
And then it was over.
As soon as the screaming was cut off into silence, Zack collapsed on the ground with a satisfied grunt, shuddering as his battered mind and body started trying to heal itself. His temples were pounding and there was something warm trickling from his ears and nose…
He caught the sound of hurried footsteps before Cloud crouched beside him, frantically checking the wounds Zack had gotten from his fight with Sephiroth earlier, but the worst of the damage wasn't physical and he knew it.
"Hey, kid, if you think I've got it bad, you should see Sephiroth," he rasped, cracking his eyes open enough to catch bright yellow hair and worried blue eyes.
"Idiot," Cloud muttered affectionately as he gently used his shirt to wipe some of that trickling warmth from Zack's face.
After a moment, the injured First tried to raise his head enough to check on the older man himself, but then firm hands settled on his shoulders, pinning him to the floor like a week-old kitten.
"You're hurt, Zack," Cloud stated worriedly. "Don't try to move too much, okay? I'll take care of him, too."
The grim finality in Cloud's voice made him reach out and grab a hold of the blond. Just as he feared, hatred was open on that honest face and Zack knew there was nothing could do to change that, but just the same….
"Please, Cloud…help him. She was controlling him, that wasn't Sephiroth…"
"Shhhh," Cloud said gently, his hands wrapping around Zack's grasping one. Zack knew by the fire in his eyes that if he didn't do something then the general would be left behind, or worse, killed, when Cloud took him away from the reactor and gods only knew what ShinRa would do with a broken Sephiroth.
There was a reason that SOLDIERs who went insane were a well-kept company secret.
"Please," Zack begged, throat aching as he held back tears. "He's always been the odd one out…don't you do it to him too…"
There was an agonizing instant where bright, angry blue eyes stared into his own, then the hate faded into bitter acceptance. Cloud knew that even if he got Zack out of here, the SOLDIER would go back once he was healed to find the other man; ShinRa be damned.
"Fine," Cloud agreed stonily.
Apparently, that was enough for Zack, because he gave the blond a sickly smile—a mere parody of his usual one—before slumping into unconsciousness.