Disclaimer: I own this song nor these character and the games they're in in any way possible. Wished I did though.

The Highwayman – Loreena McKennitt

Leon let out a happy sigh as he gently spurred his horse, letting it fall in a relaxed trot. He was really happy. After having been away for quite some time he would finally be able to see his lover again. They wouldn't be able to spent a lot of time together, he still needed to get himself some more gold coins before he could relax in his boyfriend's arms and listen to his voice which seemed to be a gift from the angels. Well, at least he would be able to see him before riding off again.

Looking up at the sky with his storm grey eyes the highwayman couldn't help but feel the corners of his mouth quirk up in a smile. It seemed like the prefect evening to be rejoined with the person dearest to him, almost like it came straight from a story book.

The cold winter wind whispered through the trees, making the forest seem almost alive in a nice yet slightly eerie way. The clouds in the midnight sky seemed like the foam topped waves of the sea, tossing the crescent moon back and forth like the ghost of a long gone ship. But what was most enchanting was the way the road seemed to be a silver ribbon formed out of the moonlight as it weaved it's path through the purple moors. It was a wonderful sight to behold and Leon wished that Cloud was here with him to see it. He was sure the blond would be amazed by it.

A twinkle appeared in the brunet's grey eyes when he finally spotted the inn in the distance. Thoughts of seeing Cloud again, of feeling his arms around him and his lips on his, of his fingers running over that smooth skin of his, started invading his mind. He always tried to avoid thinking like this as much as possible for it only made him miss his lover more if he was away. But now that he was so close to him he just couldn't help himself. "Come on Griever." He said whilst ushering his stallion to a gallop.

The wind was a torrent of darkness
among the ghastly trees
the moon was a ghostly galleon
tossed upon the cloudy seas
The road was a ribbon of moonlight
over the purple moor
when the highwayman came riding,
riding, riding,
the highwayman came riding
up to the old inn door.

Whilst hurrying to the inn, to his love, Leon quickly looked down at himself. He had put on his nicest and cleanest clothes for Cloud. Wouldn't want to show up in front of your lover in ripped and muddied clothes, now would you. Running a hair through his brown hair the highwayman nodded at himself. He was wearing a simple shirt that had some lace on the collar and over it his trade mark jacket with fur collar. Tight black pants were stuffed in a pair of knee-high boots whilst several belts hung from his hips.

At first Leon hadn't been too keen on the belts and fur lined jacked but ever since Cloud had said he looked amazingly hot in them he had made those items an almost permanent part of his outfit.

To round it off there was his treasured gunblade. He always made sure there wasn't even a speck of dust to be spotted on it. That weapon was his pride and it glittered in the silver moonlight.

He'd a french cocked hat at his forehead
a bunch of lace at his chin
a coat of claret velvet
and breeches of brown doe-skin
They fitted with nary a wrinkle
his boots were up to the thigh
and he rode with a jeweled twinkle
his pistol butts a-twinkle
his rapier hilt a-twinkle
under the jeweled sky.

Pulling his horse to a halt Leon grinned widely as he stood in the inn yard. Taking a deep breath the brunet lightly ticked his silver spurs to Griever's belly to get him walking again. It had been much to long since he had last seen this place and it brought an unique sort of calmness and comfort over him.

When he reached a window he knocked on the wooden shutters, listening longingly for a reaction. A small chuckle escaped his lips when the air was silent of any sound that could have been a response to Leon's rapping on the wooden shutters. "Oh Cloud, my dearly beloved Cloud. You haven't changed a bit since the day I met you, haven't you. Forever teasing me." He muttered softly. The blond's sneaky, teasing, playful side had already irritated the highwayman to hell and back again but truth to be told. He could just never stay angry or irritated around his love. The moment he would look into those enchanting pools of sapphire he would find himself bewitched by the blond again and would do everything just to bring a smile to his face.

"You've got me completely wrapped around your little finger, don't you Cloud." He snickered before giving his reins a gentle tug and spinning Griever around. Taking one more look at the starry sky the brunet started whistling a soft and all too familiar tune. The same tune he had whistled when they had first talked, or rather Cloud had talked to Leon, the day Leon had realized that there had always been an empty place in his heart and that Cloud was the one meant to fill it.

Leon had stopped besides one of the roads that led towards the town but also ran alongside a small river. Sitting in the shadow of the trees and on the grass he had let his horse rest, drink and eat a bit whilst he did the same and refilled their water supply. It was then that Cloud had passed him. He had immediately been captivated by those big blue eyes and gravity defying spikes. He had been a true wonder to behold and Leon had been unable to advert his gaze from the blond until he had disappeared out of his line of sight.

When a bit later the brunet had spotted the inn he had decided to spend the night there. When he then noticed the blond helping his father at the inn he decided to stay another night, and another, and another. It had almost been as if he had been enchanted. After a week he had then finally decided to leave. Reluctantly but no matter how enchanted he was with the blond he knew that he had to get going.

It was when he had been busy preparing Griever to leave that the blond had approached him. He had been whistling a tune from his hometown when suddenly the blond started talking to him. "You have been watching me." He had said, a mischievous glint in his blue eyes whilst he had sat on the wooden fence of the paddock to which Griever had been tied.

Leon had been at a loss for words at that time and had just stared at the blond. He had tried to be as discreet as possible but clearly he had failed. "I'm sorry." The brunet had replied, adverting his gaze as the faintest hint of a blush graced his cheeks. What had happened to the cocky highwayman he was? Leon did not blush, not ever for the most adorable and beautiful human being he had ever encountered in his life. "I didn't thought it was that obvious."

Cloud had chuckled softly at that. "It wasn't really. I only noticed it because I did my fair share of staring as well." The blond had hopped down the fence and was now headed towards Leon.

Blinking at those words in surprise Leon just stared as the blond closed the distance between them. Chuckling once more Cloud now stood right in front of the highwayman, chests touching. That mischievous glint was in those blue orbs again as the blond leaned over, warm breath ghosting over Leon's cheek and ear. "I'm Cloud Strife and I have to say that those pants make your ass look yummy, Squall Leonhart who prefers to be called Leon." Pulling away Cloud placed a quick kiss on the lips of a startled Leon before giggling and walking away.

Leon couldn't help but smile at the memory. The first and only person who had ever succeeded in letting Squall Leonhart be at a loss for words.

Looking up at the all too familiar window Leon grinned widely when he spotted his lover sitting in the windowsill. Cloud's attention had been caught by the whistling as he had been very concentrated on drawing. A drawing of a Celtic love knot which resembled their eternal love for each other.

And over cobbles he clattered
and clashed in the dark inn-yard
and he tapped with his whip on the shutters
but all was locked and barred
He whistled a tune to the window
and who should be waiting there
but the landlord's black-eyed daughter
Bess, the landlord's daughter
plaiting a dark red love knot
into her long black hair.



Two words were spoken in the night's air and two faces lit up as two hearts sped up.

"Have you got it? Everything?" Cloud said in a near whisper as he stared down at his lover from the window, blue eyes glittering with longing and anticipation.

Leon licked his lips nervously. He felt bad for having to disappoint his lover but it was just how it was. Cloud's father wanted his son to take over the inn when he would be too old to be able to properly run it but the blond didn't want that. Hence why Leon had suggested them to run off together as there was no way Cloud's father would accept no for an answer and let his only son leave with a thief. The brunet had been away for so long so he would be able to gather enough money for them to travel to someplace nice and start a life together.

"Not yet. I still need a little more but I just couldn't wait to see you. I'll just go to the town to get what I still need and we'll be free." It hurt his heart to see the disappointment fill Cloud's eyes. He would sacrifice himself if it would grand the blond happiness. "Just wait for me, okay? I should be back tomorrow morning if everything goes well, but if the redcoats happen to be in town I'll have to be a bit more careful. I promise I'll be back tomorrow night at last. Look for me by the moonlight, watch for me by the moonlight. I'll come to thee by the moonlight though hell should bar the way."

Cloud nodded weakly before yawning. "I'll be waiting for you then Leon."

Worry filled the brunet's stormy eyes. Cloud had known that he would be back around this time so he must have been waiting for him. This probably wasn't the first night the blond had spent sitting beside the window.

"Go to sleep Love. I promise I'll be back tomorrow." Leon said, smiling softly. "It'll be a long trip."

Nodding at this Cloud smiled softly and kissed his fingertips before reaching out towards his lover. "I love you Leon, always will." He then turned around and disappeared in the darkness of his room.

"One kiss my bonny sweetheart,
I'm after a prize tonight
But I should be back with the yellow gold
before the morning light
Yet if they press me sharply
and harry me through the day
Then look for me by the moonlight,
watch for me by the moonlight
I'll come to thee by the moonlight
though hell should bar the way."

"I love you too Cloud, always have and always will." The highwayman replied whilst he rose in his stirrups, fingers brushing softly against each other for a brief moment.

"Always have and always will." Leon repeated softly as he pressed his hand against his heart and watched Cloud's retreating figure disappear in the shadows. It was almost ridiculous how much he loved the boy but he just couldn't help it. Cloud was merely his everything.

Sitting down in his saddle again Leon closed his eyes and took a deep breath. A soft breeze played with brown hair as the scent that was just Cloud reached his nose. A scent of honey, berries and something he had never been able to place, something similar to herbs but not quite.

He always missed Cloud's scent when he was away. The scent of home and love, and there was nothing quite like it.

"Come on Griever, let's get this over with quickly. You'll finally have a travelling buddy of your own kind then." He said to his horse whilst gently tugging the reins to make the stallion turn before losing the tension on the reins a bit as he ticked his spurs against Grievers belly again, letting him fall into a steady gallop.

He and Cloud had thought this out thoroughly. Cloud had already packed most of the stuff he would be taking and he had saved some money of his own. He's be taking Fenrir, his father's horse which Cloud mostly used when he had to go shopping in town.

He rose up right in the stirrups
he scarce could reach her hand
But she loosened her hair in the casement
his face burned like a brand
As a black cascade of purfume
came tumbling over his breast
And he kissed its waves in the moonlight
oh, sweet waves in the moonlight
He tugged at his rein in the moonlight
and galloped away to the west.

It was a very calm day at the inn as there were no customers. Cloud liked days like these, days on which he didn't have to worry about cleaning rooms or changing sheets and other stuff like that. Days like these were the days on which he could draw and read without interruption. Even though today might be a day like that the blond was nervous as hell and he found himself unable to keep still for longer than five minutes.

When it was already past noon and Leon still hadn't showed up Cloud really started to worry. He had finally been able to settle down beside his window and he had longingly watched the road whilst trying to distract himself by drawing his love.

He was really hoping nothing had happened to Leon. What if the redcoats had caught him? What if they had thrown him into prison or even worse, death. Cloud tried not to shiver at the thought and sighed deeply before looking down again at the detailed sketch of his lover. "Oh Leon." He muttered before looking outside again and absentmindedly starting to chew on the back of his pencil.

When the night had finally come Cloud had made about twelve more drawings of Leon and both of them and he had just started on the thirteenth when his eyes caught movement on the road. "Leon." He half whispered in a happy tone but when he took a better look at who was coming towards them his happy mood disappeared as quickly as it had come. The ones coming into the inn's direction wasn't Leon. It were the redcoats. The blond had to suppress the urge to swear like a sailor, not that he actually knew how one swore, as he got up and put away his sketches. "Oh please Leon, please stay in the city tonight."

He did not come at the dawning
he did not come at noon
and out of the tawny sunset
before the rise of the moon
When the road was a gypsy's ribbon
looping the purple moor
a redcoat troop came marching
marching, marching,
King George's men came marching
up to the old inn door.

The redcoats were whispering to one another as they entered the inn. Rumour had it that the warranted highwayman Squall Leonhart, who they had been trying to catch for over a year now, was romantically involved with the son of the innkeeper of this particular inn. Those rumours had of course reached the ears of authority, which were widely spread all through the kingdom. Tired and frustrated by Leonhart's eel-like abilities, not even ten men had enough fingers to count on how many times the brunet had been able to slider out of authority's grasp, a group of redcoats had been send to that particular inn.

If Leonhart is indeed romantically involved with the innkeeper's son, which is frowned upon and even seen as a sin by the community and so giving that highwayman even more reason to be arrested, he would most likely try to save him if he were to be in danger of being killed by a troop of redcoats. It was the perfect plan.

Several of them just sat themselves down and ordered the landlord to bring them ale. If they were going to have to wait they could as well enjoy themselves a bit.

The others simply marched into the house part of the inn, ignoring the innkeeper's words saying they weren't allowed to go there. With big evil grins on their faces they searched the house, not caring if they broke something.

Meanwhile Cloud sat on his bed, knees pulled up against his chest and arms wrapped around them. Bright blue eyes were glittering with fear ever since he had heard the thudding of heavy boots coming up the stairs. He had no idea what was going on but he was positive it wasn't good. Were they here in search of Leon? Did they think he had hid himself here? Cloud had no idea but all he hoped for was for his lover to be delayed. He really didn't want to see him being taken by the redcoats as they would most likely hang him and that was something the blond rather not thought of. It would break his heart if Leon were to die.

A loud gasp escaped his lips when the door to his room was thrown open forcefully and three big burly men entered. Two of the men grabbed him and painfully twisted his arms behind his back before tying them together. The rope was rough and painfully scraped against his wrist with every movement.

"I can see why Leonhart would fancy a pretty little thing like you." The third man, seemingly the leader, grinned whilst gripping Cloud's chin. Smiling a smile full of rotten teeth the redcoat turned the blond's head left and right before running a thumb over his lips. "Tis a shame." He muttered before gagging the blond. A nod towards the other two men and they quickly smacked Cloud against the foot of his bed and tied him up against it.

The redcoat leader was leaning against a wall, a demonic sort of smile still on his lips. Tonight they were going to catch that lowlife thief of a Squall Leonhart and he was looking forward to it. If they would be the ones to arrest him than that would mean he would get a very big reward and who knows, maybe he'd be able to play around with Leonhart's blond lover a bit whilst he would be completely devastated by the knowledge that his lover had been shot right in front of him. Ahh, sometimes he really loved his job.

The other two men set themselves into position. From this window they were able to see the road that lead to the inn so they would be able to shoot Leonhart the moment he came close enough.

At this moment Cloud was practically praying for Leon to have decided to spend the night in the city. The sight of the road leading up to the inn made his hearts swell with fear. The road that he had always been looking at so longingly had now become something he'd rather not see.

They said no word to the landlord
they drank his ale instead
but they gagged his daughter and bound her
to the foot of her narrow bed
Two of them knelt at the casement
with muskets at their side
There was death at every window
Hell at one dark window
for Bess could see through the casement
the road that he would ride.

Apparently the redcoats had wanted to make sure Cloud wouldn't be able to do anything that could warn Leon or would keep them from shooting him so two other redcoats had come inside his room, tied a barrel in front of him, effectively squishing him between the bed and the barrel. As if that hadn't been enough they had tied one of their muskets beside him as a threat.

All that was going on, it frightened the blond to no end but he kept silent and did his best to appear fearless. For Leon's sake, he told himself over and over again. For Leon's sake. Maybe if he kept silent now then they wouldn't pay too much attention to him and then maybe he'd have a chance at saving his lover.

The redcoat leader just watched everything with that malicious grin on his face. It disgusted Cloud to be honest. How could one take so much pleasure in the suffering from others.

After some time, he had absolutely no idea how long exactly for every minute seemed like hours to him, the redcoat leader was called downstairs. Telling the man he'd be down in a moment he walked up to Cloud again and brutally grabbed his chin, turning the blond's face so that he was forced to look at the road. "Now, be a good boy and keep good watch. That road is the one that thief will take and my men here," He motioned at the two men kneeling at the windowsill. "Will make sure that he won't be able to rob even the world of air anymore. Isn't that just nice, a front row seat to the execution of that damned Squall Leonhart." Chuckling softly the leader placed a chaste kiss on the blond's lips before leaving the room.

"Leon." Cloud murmured softly, looking at the moonlit road sadly. A single tear rolled down his cheek as he heard his love's word being repeated in his mind.

"Look for me by the moonlight, watch for me by the moonlight. I'll come to thee by the moonlight though hell should bar the way."

Leon. His lover. His by the sunset most likely dead lover. It just wasn't fair.

They had tied her up to attention
with many a sniggering jest
They had bound a musket beside her
with the barrel beneath her breast
"Now keep good watch" and they kissed her
she heard the dead man say
"Look for me by the moonlight
watch for me by the moonlight
I'll come to thee by the moonlight
though hell should bar the way."

With the redhead leader now gone and those two lesser soldiers not paying all that much attention to him Cloud began twisting his hands behind his back, testing the knots in the rope. Blond brows furrowed when the rope seemed not to move even the slightest bit. After closing his eyes for a moment and taking a deep breath he started pulling and wringing his hands as much as possible without attracting any attention from the two redcoats. The last thing he wanted was for them to find out what he was doing.

Cramp had started to overtake his fingers but he didn't give up. He had to do something. He could feel warm liquid trickle down his fingers slowly. He had no idea whether it was sweat or blood nor did he care much. A pair of raw, bleeding hands was the least of worries if it would mean Leon would live.

Never stilling the movements of his fingers Cloud had no idea how much time passed but then it was as if god finally decided to have mercy with him and the tip of one finger brushed over the trigger of the musket that had been bound against him. He had to suppress the grin that threatened to overtake his face for finally he would be able to do something, to warn Leon.

She twisted her hands behind her
but all the knots held good!
but she writhed her hands 'til her fingers
were wet with sweat or blood
They stretched and strained in the darkness
and the hours crawled by like years
till now on the stroke of midnight
Cold on the stroke of midnight
the tip of her finger touched it
the trigger at least was hers.

Suddenly Cloud's head snapped up. The faint sound of horse's hooves in the distance. That all too familiar sound that he had always found himself longing for. A sound that once promised love, tenderness and comfort. A sound that had now changed into one predicting dead.

A quick glance was shot into the direction of the two men kneeling at the windowsill. Hadn't they heard it? Were they too busy concentrating that they hadn't picked it up or were they not paying any attention?

Glad that the redcoat leader had not returned jet Cloud looked outside, his breath hitching at the image of Leon in the distance, looking like nothing more than a speck of dust on the moonlight silver ribbon that was the road.

The blond's heartbeat increased as he saw his lover's figure get closer and closer to the inn, fear overtaking him. He mustn't give Leon away, he mustn't. He straightened his back against the bed and made sure not to move as much as a muscle.

Thoughts and ideas of how to save Leon from the death that was awaiting him twirled through Cloud's mind as he stood there.

Tot-a-lot, tot-a-lot had they heard it?
The horse's hooves rang clear
Tot-a-lot, tot-a-lot in the distance
were they deaf they did not hear?
Down the ribbon of moonlight
over the brow of the hill
The highwayman came riding,
riding, riding,
The redcoats looked to their priming
she stood up straight and still.

It was as if the whole world had fallen silent, every sound echoed through the night that seemed suddenly much colder than it had been. It gave the inn and its surroundings an eerie feel.

All sorts of ideas were still racing through Cloud's mind as he watched Leon come closer and closer. Chest tightened with fear and his breaths became shallow. Leon, his sweet, sweet Leon was coming closer and closer without having even a clue as to what was awaiting him. The redcoats were bound to notice him soon or maybe they had already spotted him and were only waiting for him to get closer so they would be sure their bullets would kill instead of accidentally warning him.

There wasn't really much Cloud could do to warn his lover, not with the state he was in right now, bound to a bed, barrel and a musket.

Suddenly an idea popped into his head, one that was bound to work and warn Leon. His face brightened and a soft but sad smile graced his lips. "I love you Leon." He murmured, a single tear rolling down his cheek. "I love you more than anything and I always will. I'm sorry and goodbye."

With those words his bright blue eyes grew wide for a moment as he made the final decision. A deep breath was drawn before he closed his eyes and smiled softly. Leon would live.

The next movement was a small one but it did a lot. A pale, slender finger curved over the trigger of the musket and pulled.

The sound of a single musket going of sounded like a canon shot in the cold, eerie silence. Shattering it and saving the life of a single man by taking one in exchange.

The two redcoats who had been kneeling by the windowsill turned around immediately, looking wide eyed at the innkeeper's son who had shot himself with the musket they had bound against him as a threat. When they glanced back outside they could see the retreating figure of Squall Leonhart, too far out of range to even attempt shooting him.

Not soon after the redcoat leader, followed by the rest of the redcoats and the inn keeper himself hurried upstairs and into the room. The leader cursed and swore about how Leonhart had most definitely heart that shot and must have taken off, resulting in him not being able to claim the big reward that would be given to the one who was to shoot that thief. All the redcoats then went back downstairs to find refuge in the inn's ale and so the only ones left in the room were Cloud's corpse and the inn keeper, his father.

Tears were streaming down his face as he walked over towards his son, framing his delicate face and touching their foreheads together for a moment before lovingly running calloused finger over smooth skin and through bond spikes.

Tot-a-lot in the frosty silence
Tot-a-lot in the echoing night
nearer he came and nearer
her face was like a light
Her eyes grew wide for a moment
she drew a last deep breath
Then her finger moved in the moonlight
her musket shattered the moonlight
shattered her breast in the moonlight
and warned him with her death.

The moment Leon heard that gunshot he spun Griever around and sped back towards the city he came from. Were the redcoats after him? Were they by any chance at the inn? Thoughts like these thundered through his mind as Griever galloped down the road, but most of all, Did anything happen to Cloud? He shook his head to clear his mind of those thoughts. No, Cloud was most likely sleeping peacefully right now. After all, there was absolutely no reason why the redcoats could possibly want to harm him. Asides from the fact that he and him were lovers but no one except for them knew about that, not even Cloud's father.

Pushing those thoughts away Leon slowed Griever back to an easy trot when he thought them to be far enough from the gunshot. Most likely it had just been a farmer or so who had shot a fox or wolf who was after his chickens. After having convinced himself of that thought the brunet highwayman got to thinking about how perfect everything would be tomorrow when he would return to the inn and run away with Cloud in order to start a nice and peaceful life together, just the two off them.

If only he knew that at that moment Cloud was nothing more than a lifeless corpse, body only held upright because of the ropes tying him to the bed, barrel and the musket he took his own life with to warn Leon, porcelain skin dyed a blooming red.

It wasn't until the early morning that he heard the devastating news. Apparently some of the redcoats that had been in the inn had come back to the city as well and in a city rumours spread fast as they always do. Having sat himself down in an inn to have some breakfast Leon's eyes widened and his lips tightened in a grim line when he heard someone who had apparently heard it last night from the redcoat himself, how Cloud, the son of the inn keeper from the inn outside the city had killed himself in order to warn his lover.

Leon couldn't believe his ears. Cloud, his Cloud had taken his own life in order to save him from the redcoats. That gunshot he had heard had been the sign of Cloud's dead. Leon just couldn't believe it, couldn't even begin to imagine nor comprehend it. His Cloud, porcelain skin and golden hair stained red and bright blue eyes now dull and lifeless. It couldn't. It mustn't. It wasn't fair, Cloud dying out there all alone in the darkness and surrounded by redcoats in order to save his life.

Tears stung behind his eyes as he shut everything out, not registering anything be it sound, vision, taste or feel. He was devastated. The cheerful, loving blond had meant everything to him. Had been his anything and now he was gone and it was the fault of those damned redcoats. Those redcoats, they were going to pay for what they did to Cloud.

He turned, he spurred to the west
he did not know she stood
bowed with her head o'er musket
drenched with her own red blood
Not till the dawn he heard it
his face grew grey to hear
how Bess the landlord's daughter
the landlord's black-eyed daughter
Had watched for her love in the moonlight,
and died in the darkness there.

When he was able to think straight again Leon quickly saddled and mounted Griever before galloping full speed towards the inn. With a bit of luck they were still there and if he were indeed to find them there than it would be by no means pretty. The thought of Cloud most likely still being there as well only infuriated him even more, all his sadness turning to anger directed to the redcoats. That same thought frightened his as well though, he had no idea how he would reacted when he would see his lover's bloodied corpse.

Deciding to concentrate on that later and to give his full attention to the redcoats he yelled a curse towards the sky. Drawing his gunblade he held it high in the air as he spurred Griever even more, sun rays reflecting on the polished metal surface. A trail of dust followed him as he neared the inn, an angry fire burning intently in stormy grey eyes. His spurs reflected blood red in the warm noon light and the fur lining of his jacket rippled and puffed out in the wind, making Leon look almost like an evil and angered demon.

It wasn't until he felt himself being knocked off of Griever that he realized he had been shot. Looking up and into the distance he could barely make out the sight of a redcoat. Then he felt his body hit the road. The redcoats, they had shot him down without him even realizing it, shot him down like a dog here on the highway. It was pitiful actually if you thought about it. The great Squall Leonhart, shot down like a mere dog.

Anger left stormy grey eyes as they dulled, life leaving them. A blooming red flower appeared from underneath him, his shot heart causing its rapid growth. His infamous gunblade was still clenched in his hand as he lay there, the midday sunrays playing with the glossy surface as a soft breeze rippled his fur collar which was currently in the progress of being dyed a bright red.

Red. A colour of blood, of death, but most of all a colour of love. The love of two lovers who's souls were now reunited again. Reunited in death. Deaths caused by their unconditional love for one another.

And back he spurred like a madman
shrieking a curse to the sky!
With the white road smoking behind him
and his rapier brandished high!
Blood-red were the spurs in the golden noon
wine-red was his velvet coat
When they shot him down in the highway
down like a dog on the highway
And he lay in his blood in the highway
with a bunch of lace at his throat.

In a cosy little house next to the fireplace sat a woman with green eyes and her brown hair was tied up with a pink ribbon, a bunch of small kids were sitting in a crescent around her, listening to the story she was telling them.

"That's so sad. It's unfair that they had to die, especially because of each other. Cloud killed himself because he wanted to save Leon but because of that Leon died as well." A kid with big, bright teal eyes and sandy blond hair that was styled into a mullet sniffled, hugging a smaller kid who had midnight blue eyes and slate hair that covered half of his face.

The slate haired kid, Zexion patted Demyx on the head reassuringly. "Don't be sad Demyx. The fact that they were willing to die for one another only proves how much they loved each other and now they're happily together in heaven." Sniffling again and wiping his nose on his sleeve Demyx nodded softly at those words. "You're right Zexy."

Aerith couldn't help but chuckle softly at this. "Zexion is right Demyx. Now they're together in heaven without any redcoats wanting to kill them. But please be still for a bit longer, the story isn't completely over yet."

"There's more?" Yuffie asked, stopping for a split second before continuing playing tag with a boy with equally black hair. "How can there be more?" The black haired boy, Zack asked, standing still and cocking his head to the side. Aerith just shook her head softly. "Zack is right. How can there be more, death is death." Sephiroth chimed in, being his ever cynical self.

The third black haired boy in the room just nodded knowingly, his long raven locks swishing besides his face. "See, I told you they'd raise from the dead. No one ever believes me when I say people can be revived from the dead but I tell you, it is possible." Eager to have his words confirmed Vincent looked at Aerith intently with his crimson eyes. Cid, the short haired blond Vincent had just spoken to just nodded absentmindedly whilst fidgeting with the tattered edges of Vincent's red cape. He'd much rather play with his toy planes ad airships but he knew that if he would just run away when Aerith told them a story he would get punished. One week without tea. He'd learned that lesson the hard way.

A lanky kid with bright red hair shifted in place, an excited gleam in his poison green eyes. "So, if they raise from the dead, does that mean they're zombies. Like, the zombie lovers of the highway and inn." Grinning wickedly Axel twisted his body so he was now facing the small blond sitting beside him. "Isn't that awesome Roxy."

Roxas just shook his head at the redhead. "Just shut up and listen Axel." He said, a stern look in those baby blues as he looked at his friend.

"Now, if you kids are done talking am I allowed to continue?" Nine nods were send her way so Aerith started talking again. " It is said that on winter nights when the wind is whistling though the trees and the moon looks like a ghost's galleon being tossed upon seas of clouds. On winter nights when the road looks like a silver ribbon of moonlight weaving its way through the purple moors. It is said that on nights like those a highwayman comes riding up to the old inn door."

After those last words Yuffie and Zack raced outside to continue their game of tag. Axel had grabbed Roxas' arm and had started hauling him off to get some ice cream. Demyx squeed and hugged Zexion tightly, happy grin adorning his face. Sephiroth had followed Yuffie and Zack outside but at a much slower pace to watch the two ravens chase each other. Vincent had a thoughtful look on his face as he was pulled upstairs by Cid to play with his planes and airships. He would have liked to have been able to prove that it was indeed able to raise someone from the dead, even if it had been just a story and he wasn't sure if ghosts counted or not.

When all of the kids had finally left Aerith smiled softly before getting up. "May both of you have found happiness with one another in the afterlife." She muttered. The kids probably thought it was just a nice, made up story but she knew the truth behind it, knew that it had actually happened because Cloud's father had been the brother of her great-great-great-great-grandmother.

Still on a winter's night they say
when the wind is in the trees
When the moon is a ghostly galleon
tossed upon the cloudy seas
When the road is a ribbon of moonlight
over the purple moor
a highwayman comes riding,
riding, riding,
a highwayman comes riding
up to the old inn door.

AN: My baby, it is done. I love this song to death and I've wanted to write a fic for it for quite some time now but never found the right pairing for it. Cleon is that pairing.

I love how in the end everything seems to be a story told by Aerith.

Please R&R. I've enjoyed writing every bit of this story even if it took me quite some time to finish. Hope you like it as well. Next will be SephZack, not sure yet which song, I'm torn between two.