A/N: My Secret Santa for Jeanesis. The prompt was simply 'Genesis'. Merry Christmas everyone!
He sees green on black, swirling around his feet as he walks endlessly through an infinite void he cannot escape. As always, She walks in front of him. He stares at Her back, longing, reaching – but no matter how hard he tries he can never quite touch Her.
This is the punishment of monsters. There is no peaceful death for him. Only longing, eternal, endless longing that sits in his chest like a cancer, consuming his soul.
Ahead of him, Her white cloak sways with her steps. He stares at the fabric, the pureness of it blinding –
She flickers. Blinks, and for a moment all he can see is an afterimage of Her, as if he's just stared at the sun. Then She is back, exactly the same, but something is different.
He can taste it. Feel it. Something is new. He comes to a halt, and so does She. She flickers again, winks in and out, and for a moment the coiling tendrils of lifestream around him change to streams of water. He has the sudden sensation of drowning, and it does not leave when the water changes back into lifestream once more.
He can't seem to breathe. He clutches at his throat, scrabbling, his gloves cool against his skin.
Help me, he whispers, thinks, and in front of him She turns.
As he looks upon Her face, he awakes.
He dimly notes that he is suspended in water, but he does not care. Inside him, he can feel Her, again, like he used to, and he knows purpose beyond existence for the first time in what feels like forever.
He merely thinks, and the watery cage around him explodes, dissipating into the air. He lands with a splash, water rippling below him, the sound echoing in the vast, stone cavern around him.
He hardly notices. All he can see is his brother, his dear brother, lying on the stone before him, appearing an angel in the light that shines down upon him. He steps gracefully forward, knowing with a certainty he can't explain exactly what must be done. He picks up his brother into his arms.
"It is not yet time for slumber."
The words are not his own, though he speaks them. And with a rush of euphoria he realizes they are Hers, and that She is speaking through him.
"We still have much work to do."
Oh, yes. There is so much to be done. The people of this planet will be punished, and he will be their executioner.
The wing unfolds, and effortlessly they soar through the night sky. He can taste the energy in the air, an unholy taint. Just like all the people on this surface. Unholy.
They will be purged, he swears, and –
What is that noise?
Captain Wilson of the WRS Banora was having a fairly regular day.
He'd spent the afternoon having a lovely time supporting the ground forces as they stormed the ruins of Midgar, and had enjoyed a particularly tasty batch of scones to go with his evening tea. He was currently flying over Midgar, basking in the wonderful light show through the flight deck windows.
It was such a shame, then, when alarms started flashing.
"Ah, well," he sighed, as struggled with the suddenly jerky wheel of his airship. It wouldn't be work if nothing unwelcome ever happened. "Report!"
"Sir, it seems something was sucked into the air intake vent on engine five!"
He muttered an oath. Damn intake vents. They'd be the death of him, one of these days.
"Shut it down. Engine six, too. We'll just have to go more slowly."
He felt the vibration of deck return to normal as the struggling engine powered down. Turning the wheel over to his XO, he stepped lively down to the engine rooms.
He was greeted by a blast of heat and the unmistakable scent of burning.
"What have we got this time?" he called over the sound of screeching metal as several deckhands prodded at the vent in order to get it unclogged.
"Not sure yet, sir, it's stuck in there pretty good. Caught fire, too, might be difficult to identify." The chief engineering officer was peering into the vent, a flashlight in one hand and a large, hooked pole in the other. "Definitely a bird, though. Black feathers...and I see a lot of off red."
Captain Wilson sighed, rubbing at his forehead. This was going to take several hours to get cleaned out. He'd be lucky if he made it home in time for apple cobbler with his wife.