Tifa loathed, despised, hated Friday nights. They were long, they were filled with drunk and overly loud customers in her bar, and there was usually at least one incident of groping important enough that she was forced to call Cloud to drag the unruly customer out the back door of the bar and do something with him. She never knew exactly what Cloud did to those particular customers, but if she were to judge from the small, satisfied smirk on his face, it might have been a beating – from one man to another, of course. Tifa smiled at the thought as she sharply popped the cap off yet another beer bottle.

Nonetheless, she reflected, he's always so quiet. She wondered if he talked to other people besides herself and their usual social circle. Even within their tightly knit family, he seldom spoke beyond grunts, and his words came out in sets of six at the most. Normally, Tifa didn't mind – Cloud was fairly easy to read much of the time. But there were the times when she was already in short temper that his silence irritated her.

At worst, his silence made her insecure about her relationship with him. She'd ask a question already founded on fear and be met with – what else? – a light grunt without looking in her direction, his concentration focused on the piles of receipts from his deliveries. That's when the doubts started to creep in, though the rational side of her mind said, "You're being stupid – Cloud is Cloud. If he just grunts, you're not in danger of breaking up. And shouldn't it be proof enough that he stays with you during bar hours?"

Tifa frequently told Cloud that having him nearby while the bar was operating was a comfort. Not that she couldn't handle things by herself if things got out of hand. It was just nice to know that she had someone to back her up.

On this particular evening, however, his silence irked her – like it shouldn't, Tifa's rational half griped at her less rational half. Cloud sat at his usual seat at the end of the bar, swilling his brandy around in the tumbler, quietly contemplating the tiny waves inside. Millions of miles away, Tifa thought. And this particular Friday night had not yielded up a customer who wanted to cop a feel – for that, she was grateful. But Tifa wanted to hear his voice.

He was reaching the bottom of his tumbler. "Want more brandy?" Tifa chirruped with a smile on her face. Cloud shook his head silently without looking away from the amber wave pool he created.

A chorus of calls from the surrounding tables for more of this, more of that. She picked up her beer pitcher.

"Watch the cash register?" Tifa asked as she went around the counter.

"Mmm," Cloud responded.

The nagging doubts began to eat at the edge of her mind as she refilled glasses. Several moments later, she returned to the bar and started wiping the counter down, pulling out the tequila for a group's shots, washing another round of tumblers and mugs, simply going through the motions.

This is silly, Tifa, she thought to herself. You're making a mountain out of a molehill, as Mama used to say. The pep talk was effective enough to push her through another hour. She refilled Cloud's tumbler to the halfway point without his asking while keeping an eye on the other customers sitting at the front counter.

"Thanks," Cloud murmured and continued to nurse his drink. Tifa couldn't help a smile – he was thinking, but he looked serene. And yet, he was mulling something over. I wonder where you go inside your head, Tifa thought.

At last, it was time to close the bar. Tifa shouted, "Last call!" refilled the mugs and tumblers that were lifted towards her and took the money of those who were ready to leave. When all had left the bar, she thanked her stars again that she had a space big enough to have a goodly number of customers but not so large that she was positively dead on her feet afterward. Mugs, shot glasses, tumblers and wine glasses littered every table and she began the task of picking each piece of glassware and putting them in the sink. She filled the glasses with water ("To get them soaking," she explained to Cloud. "Mmm," he replied), took the cash till out and wiped down the counter and tables one final time that evening.

She gently took Cloud's tumbler from him, watching his face carefully. His eyes smiled at her. Tifa's shoulders relaxed and she put the glass in the sink.

"Ready for bed?" She asked him.

"Hmm-mmm," was his reply.

Tifa took up the till and turned out the lights in the bar, ascending the stairs, Cloud only one step behind her.

She placed the cash till on the desk in her and Cloud's bedroom. "I'll deal with that in the morning," she said, talking to fill the silence. "Are you showering this evening?"

"I showered this afternoon," he said. "Go ahead."

Words! She rejoiced in her head. Words coming out of Cloud! Her rational half broke in: He knows how to talk – you're making a mountain out a molehill. Again.

She entered the bathroom and flicked on the light. Without hesitation, she stripped off her clothes and threw them into a corner. It was the wee hours of Saturday morning, she'd have to get up soon and open the bar for Round Two of the weekend.

She was young, but she tired of the superbly late nights. Tifa, why didn't you become a nursery school teacher? She asked herself as she turned the taps and slipped past the opaque shower curtain. Good question – and why not? She responded. I'll sell the bar, quit the business and apply at Little Ones' University down the road.

Just then, the bathroom door opened and she saw Cloud walk in, dressed in loose, comfortable clothing. He settled himself down on the closed lid of the toilet and watched her through the shower curtain.

This is new, Tifa thought as she scrubbed shampoo into her scalp. She waved to him with a small, inquisitive smile. He waved back, mirroring her smile and comfortably crossed his legs.

"Stalker," she playfully said aloud.

He leaned his elbows back on the tank and sighed contentedly. Tifa felt his eyes trail down her body and she suddenly felt embarrassed, despite the fact that, well, his seeing her undressed wasn't anything new. In fact, seeing one another naked wasn't anything new. She blushed as she registered his scrutiny and turned her profile to him. Silly woman, her rational half muttered. Do you think he's embarrassed?

Tifa looked at him – no, indeed, he didn't seem to be embarrassed, even though she could plainly see that his toes were curled under and his hands were pressing into his lap. She swallowed a delighted giggle.

Her shower was finished and she turned off the taps. As she wrung the excess water out of her hair, she heard the sudden whoosh of the shower curtain being shoved aside. The pocket of warm air inside the shower escaped and the cold air swirled against her wet skin. She growled in protest, but stopped when she saw that Cloud had jumped up from his seat. He placed one hand behind her head and the other against the small of her back.

"Trust me," he said before he lowered her to the floor of the tub.

"Does trusting you include my being quiet?" Tifa asked, teasing. Her insides flipped with anticipation.

"Quiet, but not too quiet," Cloud replied. He lifted her torso to rest against the backboard part of the tub and lifted her left leg to rest on the edge of the tub. "Remember how much this bathroom echoes."

"Indeed," Tifa replied and lightly grazed Cloud's proffered mouth with her lips.

Cloud's lifted an eyebrow, clearly unimpressed by the chasteness.

"I could do better?" Tifa questioned.

"Mmm-mmm," Cloud replied, nodding his head.

"I'll try again," Tifa whispered and plundered his mouth with her tongue, making sure that he felt the slippery dance of their mouth, teeth and tongues. His moan reached her ears, so quiet that she almost thought she had imagined it.

When she pulled away to take a breath, Cloud presented his two fore-fingers to her lips. Tifa looked askance at Cloud, so he gently wriggled them up to the first knuckles past her teeth. She got the hint.

"Suck them?" She asked in an undertone. He smiled and nodded as she took his fingers into her mouth as far as she could handle. I keep forgetting how long they are, Tifa thought. She sucked them in her mouth twice before he pulled them back out, dripping with her saliva.

"Thank you," he whispered cheerily as he reached down to her nether regions and ran his two fingers along the insides of her outer lips. Tifa gasped at the sudden, cool contact. Cloud nudged her legs farther apart and nuzzled her face with his lips.

She closed her eyes, obeyed his silent command and concentrated on relaxing her entire body, while he ran his fingers up and down, always careful to avoid the tiny nubbin that would bring her to release more quickly.

The cool tub embraced the upper part of her body while she felt his long fingers trace her nether outlines.

"So pink," Cloud murmured and she cracked open an eye.

"Don't you wish you had one of your own?" Tifa asked with a low laugh.

"I have one of my own," Cloud replied and traced her tight entrance with his pointer finger. She began contracting the muscles in her hips and buttocks, raising herself towards the stimulation. He pushed her back down gently with his free hand which was stationed on her hip.

"You want to finish already," Cloud stated, shaking his head in mock disbelief.

"I want more!" Tifa whispered loudly.

Cloud grunted and shook his head again, but he willingly obliged her and drew tiny circles against the inside of her inner lips, again, avoiding her nerve-happy nubbin. He hummed a happy tune and alternated between watching her slicked core slowly turn a brighter shade of pink and watching her face.

Tifa relaxed her arms and legs again, but the light stimulation and lack of pressure piqued her body. She reached down and began to press her clit, but was surprised by a benign slap to her wrist.

"That's for me to take care of," he said with a self-satisfied grin. Tifa huffed and decided it would be better to grip the sides of the tub.

She saw him focus on half-aroused clit. "It's so lovely when it's like this," he said, as if he were admiring a lovely painting on exhibit. Tifa blushed and looked away, despite the fact that this was Cloud.

Her breathing hitched as she spoke. "I need you…I need you inside me," she whispered, grasping his shirt with her hand.

He tsk'ed at her and shook his head. "Such hurry," he muttered. He grinned.

What is he thinking? Tifa wondered just before he placed a finger at her entrance and put it in up to his first knuckle. It was good – hell, all of it is good – but it wasn't nearly enough. She needed strong friction and he was quite deliberate in not providing it for her.

"More, please, more, please," she chanted, rocking against his finger, trying to get him further into her core – he, however, maintained his stance, smiling at her all the while. His peaceful smile maddened her and she grasped his shirt again.

"I need more, please," she stated in a low, playfully threatening tone.

Cloud huffed and pulled his fingers away. Tifa clapped her legs shut against the sudden arousal she felt in the absence of his digits. Cloud cradled his forearms under her neck and knees, scooped her out of the tub and laid her onto the fuzzy bathroom rug. He got onto his hands and knees, leaned over her and kissed her passionately. Embarrassed though she was at her own shamelessness, she softly begged for more through her mouth into his, words meant only for his ears. She wriggled her hips as if to make a point, her body trying to find some source of stimulation.

But Cloud was quite purposeful in taking his time. He broke their mouths apart and kissed her forehead, at her hairline, then moved down to her eyelid, to her temple, to her cheek, to her well-kissed lips once more, then down her neck towards her collarbone. He tongued her erect nipples and she shivered. Tifa held them up for more kisses, but Cloud did not spend nearly enough time on them, or so Tifa thought. He placed light, teasing kisses down her flat stomach and she twisted with the sudden shocks of arousal shooting into her groin.

She felt his breath for just a moment against her belly button, then the barest touch of his tongue, and then his entire mouth sucked on the sensitive well. Tifa bunched the rug in her hands and breathed deeply, feeling her arousal reach a new level. She lifted her hips towards him, asking for more through her breathy moans.

He kissed down from her navel to her mound and, at last, laid himself down between her legs, raised his head and planted one small kiss on Tifa's already electrified clit. It was enough.

Tifa held her breath and every muscle in her body tensed as she reached her crest and rode it over into a delightful, aroused haze. It was good, but an "appetizer" orgasm.

When she managed to breathe again, she heard Cloud's famous tsk. "Too fast, too soon!" He murmured against her inner thigh. She quivered again with renewed nerves. "We'll call that one a forfeit and try again." He winked at her.

She gazed at his grin for one moment before she said, "That was your fault, Cloud Strife! You've been teasing me too long."

"Guilty as charged," he replied merrily before he dropped his head again and began to pepper her outer lips with kisses. He kissed her entrance before experimentally poking the tip of his tongue down into it. Tifa balled her fists at her side and squeezed her eyes shut at the sudden peak in her arousal. When did he get so damn good at this?

By now, her warm essence flowed and she heard Cloud sip at it as daintily as a connoisseur might from a wine glass. The sound alone pushed her again towards orgasm. Her moans came in breathy intervals once again. She smoothed a hand into Cloud's hair, wanting to encourage him, but he slid his tongue up from her entrance back up to her clit. If it hadn't been for the sudden stimulation, she might not have pushed his face into her.

She felt the bridge of his nose rub against just the right spot, felt his tongue dip into and flick inside her entrance. Just as suddenly as the reflex came, Cloud pulled away. This time, she cried out loudly at the lack of stimulation.

He propped his face upon his hands and elbows and gazed at her. He hasn't even bothered to wipe his face, Tifa thought. Indeed, everything from the top of his nose down to his chin was covered with the sticky evidence of her arousal.

"What do you propose we do?" He asked her. She was becoming incapable of speech.

"Just…more, please!" Tifa replied, tensing all her muscles in an effort to keep her arousal at its current level. She didn't know how he managed to talk. When he lifted her out of the tub, she had distinctly felt his long, hard length pressing against his pajama pants. Of course, that then – he was probably in an even better state now. She did not understand how he was still coherent; she almost wasn't.

"More, more, more," Cloud mimicked gently. "I may not call you 'Tifa' anymore, just 'More."

Tifa nodded vigorously – anything to get him started again.

He chuckled against her thigh, sighed deeply, and laid his mouth over her clit. He also poised two fingers just past the ring of muscle before her core.

"I want to hear every cry and groan you can make," Cloud said before he began. "But keep in mind that Barrett and the kids are just down the hallway. And this bathroom echoes."

Tifa was way past caring. She hadn't had The Talk with either Denzel or Marlene, but if that was to be the aftermath, then so be it. And Barrett? Surely, he would understand.

At last, Cloud created a fantastic suction over her clit and thrust his two fingers inside her. His mouth was hard, but his fingers were lazy in their action. Tifa thrust her hips up to encourage a better speed. She moaned with an open mouth when he obeyed.

When he alternated between licking and sucking her, humming, pushing and pulling his fingers in and out of her, she thought she heard him hum words:

"…love you…" Powerful suck.

"…love you…" Deepest push.

"…love you…" And he mashed his lips into her clit, furiously pumping his fingers, pushing her to orgasm and over the edge.

She felt the warm wave coming from deep within. His words brought tears to her eyes as she held his head into her as she came, holding her breath so hard she saw stars. Every muscle in her body wound tighter and tighter until just after the point of release.

Cloud made sure that he did not stop sucking, did not stop pumping until she felt absolutely boneless. Instead of abruptly stopping, he slowed his ministrations until he ground to a halt.

love you…

She drew him up her body to touch her lips to his and felt him shift his hips, slide his pants down and kick them off.

"Yes," she cried and held him tighter. She ran a hand down his body and slid it up and down his hot, dripping cock.

"Mmm," Cloud growled deep within his throat before lining himself up with her. Tifa threw back her shoulders and wrapped both legs around his waist in preparation.

"You know," she said huskily. "You've never been one for words, but you certainly know how to express yourself with your mouth."

Cloud smiled down at her. "I know," he said before they thrust together in one accord. Consequences be damned – one of us is screaming tonight, Tifa thought.