Disclaimer: The following fan fiction is inspired by and loosely based on canon and characters from Final Fantasy VII: The Advent Children movie, copyright owned by Square Enix. I claim no affiliation implied or otherwise. Only the first line is a direct quote from the movie; I do not claim authorship of that. The rest of the story is in my own words and is based on my own observations, my own speculation and my own personal fantasy.

A/N: Takes place after the ending of Advent Children movie Rated: M citrusy CloudxTifa

Cloud's Choice 1/1 by Fidomom

"I feel lighter. Maybe I've lost some weight; all that dilly dallying."

Tifa's heart soared at Cloud's words but there'd be time later, to further explore his new found lightness with him. She quickly hopped on the back of Fenrir, happy he'd made room for her, in more ways than one.

After once again defying death and conquering Sephiroth, Cloud stood in the healing waters and Tifa could see that he was different now, the way he was looking at her, at their friends and the family they'd made with Denzel and Marlene; she could tell he was ready to choose them over his memories now. She thought a silent thank-you to Aerith for freeing him from his guilt and encouraging him to move on.

Later that night ...

Barrett tucked Marlene in and promised he'd be back again soon,
"You mind Cloud and Tifa while I'm gone."

"I will Daddy."

"That's my girl!"

Tifa knew Marlene needed these moments with her foster Dad and yet she was anxious for Barrett to get going already; she just wanted to be alone with Cloud and from the way Cloud kept looking at her as he busied himself with delivery service paperwork, she suspected he was looking forward to being alone too ... alone with her, though; not alone like he was before.

Tifa finished tucking Denzel in as Cloud and Barrett said their goodbyes. She was leaving the children's room, taking care to close the door silently, and suddenly Cloud was there, right behind her. She stood stock still, her breath catching as he put both his hands on her shoulders and breathed her name quietly beside her ear,

She turned slowly to face him, as her arms crept about his neck,

The corners of his mouth tugged upwards in a rare smile as they looked at one another,
"I was beginning to think I would have to wait until morning to be alone ... with you."

She smiled easily,
"Well, we're alone now. The kids are in bed."

He nodded,
"I think we should be too."

She smirked then,
"I'm not tired."

He kissed her quickly and softly on the mouth,
"Sleep is not what I want, either. Join me, Tifa."

She kissed him back harder, longer and then shrugged coyly,
"So you admit you do want company, after all?"

His soft smile widened,
"No. Not company. Just you. Now."

She giggled,
"Oh Cloud, I'm yours. I've always been yours, like you didn't know."

He stroked her hair away from her brow,
"You've been very patient. The wait is over, Tifa. I'm here with you now. I choose us. Come to bed."

She dropped her arms from around his neck and took his hand in her own,
"Of course, Cloud. You and I, we're partners."

He brought her hand to his lips brushing them briefly across her knuckles,
"More than that, we're family, Tifa. You, me, and the kids. That is my choice."

She caressed his face with her free hand,
"A real family?"

He dipped his chin once in affirmation,
"Well, this isn't a dream or a memory ... at least, not yet it isn't."

Tifa let him lead her then, to her room, confident that his future memories would be happier ones, memories that would inspire him to keep moving forward; to keep living in the moment ... with her.

Once they were inside her room, with the door closed and locked, Cloud took her in his arms with a tenderness that surprised her. He kissed her ear, her cheek, her mouth, sinking his fingers into her hair. Tifa sighed against his gentle kiss and pressed herself against him. Feeling his interested reaction in his nether regions, she deepened their kiss and her hands began a quest for the fasteners on his clothing that were keeping her from the reward of feeling his skin under her fingertips. Cloud fully co-operated and some small part of her mind was amused by his unabashed surrender. Soon he was naked before her, not only physically, but from the look in his eyes, naked to his very soul. She gently caressed his defined musculature as she left a trail of light kisses everywhere her fingertips traveled. As her fingers wrapped around the proof of his desire for her, he stilled her hand with his own,
"My turn, now, Tifa."

She readily surrendered as he slowly and reverently undressed her, until they stood face to face, with no barriers between them any longer. Cloud laced the fingers of both his hands to hers, palms to palms. He lightly brushed his lips against hers, deepening the kiss as she responded by pressing herself into his chest and opening her mouth in invitation. Tifa struggled to have her hands free to touch him but he tightened his grip and kept her immobilized as their mouths fused ever tighter together. Tifa moaned against his mouth in frustrated longing and Cloud gently pulled her with him as he backed up toward the bed. When he felt the edge of the mattress against the backs of his bare legs, he sat and lay back all at once finally letting go of Tifa's hands, as she scrambled to crawl onto the bed, with him under her. He lightly trailed his fingertips up and down the naked flesh of her arms, her back, and her bottom as they continued their increasingly passionate kiss. Cloud gasped against her mouth in surprised approval, as Tifa shifted her hips all at once, smoothly joining their flesh.

Overcome with raw passion, he then rolled her under him, encouraging her to wrap her legs around him as he urgently and repeatedly strove to deepen their sexual union. His kisses became frenzied, making rounds between her mouth, her eyes, her neck, her forehead, and her cheeks as Tifa's keening sounds of pleasure urged him on. As she began to tremble under him in her mindless ecstasy, he joined her in her height of pleasure and they finally collapsed satisfied in each other's arms. He pressed his forehead to hers with his eyes closed trying to catch his breath. He felt Tifa's fingertips caressing his face and tenderly running through his blond locks. A small smile formed upon his lips,
"Of course I'm yours, Tifa. For always."