Title: Placebo

Category: Games » Kingdom Hearts

Author: Girlprincess1

Language: English, Rating: Rated: T

Genre: Romance/Supernatural

Published: 10-10-09, Updated: 11-12-13

Chapters: 2, Words: 3,357

Chapter 1: Cloud

Warnings: Future possible rated sexual scenes, Slash, Language, Mature themes

Disclaimer: Loosely based on the XMen mythology. I do not own Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy 7 or X-Men comics or the films and I make no profit from this

Pairings: Leon/Cloud, Sephiroth/Cloud, Axel/Roxas, Riku/Sora, possible other pairings

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Revised/Rewritten Version

Chapter 1: Cloud

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As far as he could remember, Cloud could do things he knew normal people couldn't. It started out when he was five years old. He remembered being sprawled onto the rough grassy ground of his Kindergarten playground, sniffling as he glared angrily at Aaron Williams who stood grinning at him toothily, his apple juice in the bully's grubby hand. A whole crowd of children had gathered around them, murmuring to themselves, no one daring to intervene and anger the class' most viscous and shot tempered member as he stood there, his two best friends by his side, a smug childish expression on his face, looking down at the fallen blond.

The next thing he remembered was a loud burst, sweet sticky apple juice flying everywhere, Aaron's eyes widening in sudden fright as he instinctively jumped backwards, bumping into Carter and Sammy, his bright red T-shirt rapidly staining into a dark brown.

For a very long time Cloud had paid no attention to that particular memory, brushing it away as an accident, just an unintentionally firm squeeze from Aaron's behalf and nothing more. But as he grew older, strange events begin to follow, initially insignificant but slowly becoming more and more noticeable.

There would times he wouldn't remember taking out clothes from his closet but as he'd turn around, they'd be there neatly folded on his bed. Sometimes he'd be playing Tag with his friend Tifa Lockhart and Hunter Lane from down the street and often and, if he was the one chasing them, their shoelaces would end up being tied weirdly in a tight knot making them fall or on other occasions they'd trip on air for no reason whatsoever. Often he'd leave his room neat and tidy after hours of cleaning up and trudge downstairs for a little snack and come back up to find it messier than ever, books and stencils splayed out all over the carpet, bed sheet's messed up, clothes haphazardly strewn all over the floor. Cloud would often get scolded for locking his bedroom door before sleeping the night before and making it difficult for his mother to wake him up for school the next day and yet having no memory of ever doing the act.

Cloud had known Joseph Locke ever since he was three years old. The brunette had lived three houses down from his own with his mother before he mysteriously left for a boarding school. He remembered how their teachers would eye Joseph sometimes, their faces drawn tight, eyes cold and withdrawn, how Tifa's father threw a fit when he saw them playing together one day as he arrived to pick her up from school. He remembered how his mother whispered to his father in small soft murmurs whenever he came over to play with him and welcomed Joey with smiles that never reached their eyes. Nibelheim was a relatively small town, everyone knew almost everyone. Friends were easy to make when you had only a handful of people in your class, and yet no one approached Joey except for Cloud and, for a while, Tifa. Even Aaron, who didn't let a day pass without pushing Hunter or him into the ground roughly, stayed away from him. The blond never understood why and what Joey had done to deserve such cold brutal isolation from everyone in the neighborhood as a kid. His parents would only brush off the idea and assure him everyone loved little Joseph and if Tifa knew something, on occasions when she'd look at the brown haired boy and have a distant wary expression in her eyes as her father dragged her away at home time, she never told him.

It was on his tenth birthday when Cloud had been playing hide and seek with Joey and they were both dashing around hallways, ducking past their fellow friends and classmates from school, ignoring their parents warning them to slow down and stop making a ruckus, when something happened.

They had snuck outside and were scrambling to climb the rope ladder that led to Cloud's tiny little tree house, Hunter's voice loud and playful as he counted back from twenty, when Joey's foot had slipped and, losing his balance, he roughly came down landing on his back with a scream so shrill Cloud hadn't heard ever before. He remembered the living room windows, which stood tall and wide and looked out into their garden, bursting with a loud crash. He remembered people screaming from the inside, Joey looking around in confusion, meeting Cloud's own confused and startled blue ones, and everyone rushing out to see what had happened.

The blond hadn't seen Joey afterwards anymore, his mother had grounded him for some reason, and within a week or so he had reported to have left for a boarding school without so much as a note or a goodbye. His mother had gone with him, and from what he heard, no one had come to see Mrs. Locke a farewell at the bus station and they had gone off alone. Julie and David Strife never acknowledged that incident, or that someone had lived in that house before the Davis couple moved in half a year later.

It was only when he was eleven that something happened which made him realize something was wrong. He had been perched dangerously on a swivel chair and struggling to stand still as he tried to reach upwards with his hands for his favorite brand new pair of sneakers from the top of his cupboard. He had leaned upwards, tiptoeing slightly, as the chair gave away and fell from underneath his feet that he had come crashing down on his face with a startled scream as, simultaneously, the light bulb on the wall next to his cupboard burst into tiny pieces, delicate pieces of glass shattering softly on the carpet.

Soon after Cloud's eleventh birthday, after the light bulb incident that his parent's hadn't thought much off, thing's started changing. He'd been out in the garden once, sitting cross-legged on the soft ground which was still wet from the rain earlier that morning, a pile of pebbles that had taken all day yesterday scattered in front of the blond. The blond had sat there for an entire half an hour, bright blue eyes narrowed and focused intently on the gathered pebbles, willing for something to happen to convince him that it wasn't all in his head. Eventually he had gone inside when he heard Julie come back from the store and setting up the groceries in the kitchen.

It was only after a small snack when he was asked to fetch the vacuum cleaner from the garage for Julie. Cloud had been passing by the garden and on his way to their dusty garage when he noticed it. The pebbles that had been spread out haphazardly were arranged in an eerily straight line. Cloud had stood frozen for a couple of minutes, an indescribable feeling bubbling in his stomach; before he rushed quickly back inside.

As he lay in his bed, rolled over on one side, images of Joey kept appearing behind his eyes. How his mother had looked at him, eyes wide and frozen, silent as everyone gathered around the two boys and the shattered pieces of glass surrounding them. How sweet, peaceful, kind Nibelheim had shunned him even when he was a child, whispered behind his back, turning their backs on an innocent boy and his mother who had love everyone as they were her own family. The woman who baked the most delicious brownies and biscuits and gave them to everyone who desired, who was present at every child's birthday party a huge lovely gift in hand, who was there when Tifa's mother died and helped Mr Lockhart get back on his feet, who had comforted and nursed Cloud and Hunter whenever they got injured playing at school and passed by her house, the woman who was always eager to lend out a helping hand.

Cloud slept with images of Julie and David throwing him out, Tifa and Hunter turning their backs on him. He dreamt of Joey, little Joey with wide innocent eyes and a cheerful smile who had lived his entire life in isolation.

That was the first night of many when Cloud woke up to his bedroom being a mess, chairs fallen down, paintings on the floor, bookshelf collapsed and books scattering the carpet, cupboard open and clothes everywhere, and the blond himself covered in cold sweat.

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"So do you want me to talk to him about this? We both know how bad you are at this sort of stuff." Julie turned to her husband, placing the last clean dish into the shelf, as David leaned into the counter, his eyebrows furrowed.

"What if- I mean, Jules are we sure about this? I mean. Is it really that necessary? Cloud doesn't need to go. We're doing good. He's fine. No one even knows about it." David turned to Julie, folding his arms across his chest.

The woman turned to the tall brunette, staring at him incredulously, "Are you serious? Dave, for a very long time Cloud couldn't even move a book willingly. Yesterday afternoon he had a nightmare during his nap and the entire lounge was shaking. I'm worried okay? About him."

Her husband ran a clumsy hand through his hair in frustration, his eyes heavy and frustrated. "But this is fucking Midgar. Cloud can't even walk back home from school without getting injured. In Nibelheim. And you want to send him off for boarding school?"

Julie swiped messy blonde bangs from her foreheads, "Do you think I want this? This is my baby boy. This is Cloud. But you know this. This is for his own good. I'm scared, okay? I'm scared for us. I'm scared for him. This is getting out of our control"

"What do we even know about this fucking Rufus guy? Don't you think it's a little shady how he contacts us a few days after the Christmas fiasco? Who knows what kind of place he's got running over there."

"I did a background check on him obviously, Dave. It's a really amazing program. They offered Cloud a scholarship. A scholarship! In Midgar! A boarding school even. And its only for the exceptionally gifted too"

"Yeah and we all know what they fucking mean by gifted. Jules, listen. You've seen the news. Midgar is lost. Mutants get hunted there like fucking dogs. And you want Cloud to go there? Where he can be caught? This is my son, our son we're talking about. Nibelheim is safe, it's quiet, we can just-"

"Just what? Wait for him to bring down the house?" The blonde woman reached out and patted the brunet on the arm comfortingly.

"I know," she muttered softly, leaning forward to wrap her thin arms around his waist, resting her head against his chest. "I know you're trying your best to help us. And I admire you so much for being so strong and supportive. But this is out of our hands now, and it's not your fault. Beside's Cloud can be with people like himself. He could really learn. There won't be another opportunity like this"

David was quiet. For a couple of seconds, the only sound that could be heard was of the neighbors mowing their lawn. He reached forward to gently stroke his wife's head slightly.

"If Cloud asks even once to come back-"

Julie Strife smiled tiredly, "I know."

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"Can't we really go with him to Midgar?" Julie turned to David as he carried his son's suitcase out back where their car was parked. Said blond was still upstairs, having requested a final moment to himself.

"Jules, this is already hard for him and us. If we go with him all the way there it'll be even harder for us to say goodbye and it'll only upset Cloud even more. I would love nothing more though." David gave her a soft peck on the cheek, squeezing her shoulder as he maneuvered the suitcase into the trunk.

"You really think he's okay with this? He took to the news too calmly for me. Even though it's been a month." He turned to face Julie and looking at his wife in the sunlight made him notice just how tired she looked. There were dark bags under her eyes, her complexion pale, her eyes tinged slightly red and tired.

"Cloudie's tough. But I think he's secretly wanted to get out of here as well. You know he's never really gotten along with anyone except for Tifa. This could be good for him in general. He's always wanted to travel you know." The blond smiled softly as they made their way back inside the house.

"How is Tifa by the way?" David recalled the brown haired girl that had been Cloud's bestfriend for almost all of his sixteen years. She'd visited him last night, to bid him a final goodbye.

"Poor girl didn't take the news well. She's happy for Cloud though and his 'leaving to pursue a proper education in Midgar'. Remind me to invite her over later tonight? I'll make her a cheesecake, she really likes those. Nathan's going to probably be working late again." Julie sat down onto the comfy couch as Cloud climbed down the staircase.

David turned to look at his son properly for the last time before he left. At sixteen, Cloud was a little scrawny and too skinny to put David at ease. His sunny blond hair was in its signature spiky hairstyle, covered by a snow cap. Nibelheim was custom to extremely cold weather but Midgar would be warmer and Cloud had made sure to not dress too warmly. His large aquamarine blue eyes blinked at him, covered by thick rimmed fashionable glasses. His nose and cheeks were dusted slightly pink from the cold, mouth drawn into a thin line. His 5'6 frame was wrapped up in a coat and a muffler, handmedown clothes that were once his own, hanging a little loosely on Cloud's narrow shoulders and frame.

"Dad, the silence is really creeping me out. Are you okay?" The blond tilted his head slightly, confused and a little worried. He always worried about his parents, and for once he actually thought about how this would impact them instead of himself. How they'd be alone while he was away for an undefined period of time until further notice. Cloud knew his parents and how much they worried about him. His mother had singlehandedly tried to bond with her only son as much as she could the past week, something which both pleased and saddened him immensely. His dad meanwhile had taken to banning the very mention of Midgar, him leaving and 'Shinra Institute for the Gifted'. Here now, standing and looking at both of his parents, Cloud could feel fear and anxiety bubble in him, his chest tightening.

"I'm fine, just making sure you're properly covered. God knows you actually care about your own health." David muttered as Cloud moved past him to get his shoes beside the kitchen door.

"Hey, that was one time okay? And the forecast was sunny." The blond muttered as he straightened up turning to them again.

"Listen, Cloud." David started, immediately causing the atmosphere of the room to become tense. "If you-"

"Dad, please no. Don't-, we've discussed this." The two looked at each other silently for a while before the younger blond sighed quietly. "Talking about this will only make this harder on me. I need this, we need this if not for myself, for you guys. You deserve a normal life."

Julie got up and reached forward to grab Cloud's hands, "You listen to me okay? We love you the way you are. You deserve everything, and this will do it for you. We love you so much and support you no matter what. Always remember that." Cloud nodded, slightly smiling as Julie squeezed his hands.

"You keep contact with us, okay? Emails, phonecalls, everything, every week. Are we clear?" David reached up to his wife and son, wrapping his arm around his boy's shoulders.

Cloud nodded slightly, looking down on the floor because he knew, for sure, if he looked into his mother and father's eyes, he'd break down. And all that preparation over the past month wouldn't have been for anything. He couldn't break down, not right now. Not when he needed to be strong, for his parents.

Taking a deep breath, he turned to follow his parents out the door, the lights switching off on their own behind him with a click.

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Timeline:

Cloud (Aged 3) – Befriends Joseph Locke, Tifa Lockhart and Hunter Lane

Cloud (Aged 5) – Playground incident with Aaron Williams

Cloud (Aged 10) – Birthday incident with Joseph

Cloud (Aged 10) – Joseph Locke and his mother left Nibelheim, The Davis family moved in

Cloud (Aged 11) – First acknowledged his power's manifesting

Cloud (Aged 11) – Attempted to willingly use powers, pebble incident

Cloud (Aged 11) – Nightmares started

Cloud (Aged ?) – Julie and David Strife find out

Cloud (Aged ?) – Fallout with Hunter Lane

Cloud (Aged 16) – Leaves for Midgar

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Cloud Strife – Telekenesis

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Scenes left unexplained till later: Julie and David finding out about Cloud, The fallout with Hunter, the Christmas fiasco, Rufus contacting them, Cloud being told about Shinra, Cloud on his way to Shinra, Tifa and Cloud's goodbye

IMPORTANT AUTHORS NOTE:

Okay, so this is the first chapter. It's a little rough. But please review and tell me what you think and if you liked this version than the one before? It may seem a little draggy but once it kick starts I assure you it'll be amazing as it seems inside my head. I have so much planned for this; I can't wait to pan out the relationships of this story. Because that's what this story is actually about. I'm not focusing too much on the powers and mutation aspect of it because for me it's a subplot. It's about character growth, of Cloud as a person in general.

READ AND REVIEW AND SPREAD THIS STORY AROUND PLEASE. :')

And if uh you're interested in being a character in this don't hesitate and I'll see what I can do. Because apart from the main 12 people, I'm going to be using OC's here and there like in this chapter. A lot of OC's here. I rather write OC's then OOC fandom characters and screw them up.