Title: The Dilemma
Rating: T for safety
Summary: AU. Zack and Tifa's son has a question that has no clear answer.
Prompt: Run as fast as you can
Word Count: 1,123
A/N: This was written for the 5_prompts community over on LJ, and well, it's really short. Also, I have no kids myself, so I'm not entirely sure how this kind of question would be answered if asked by a five year old. Please forgive me for my simple view on this subject, but I was just trying to have fun. Also, I'm really hoping that the next four prompts become Zack/Tifa fics, too. If I do manage to get those written(because school takes up half of my time now), expect them to be updated under this story as a five chapter collection. Oh, and please keep in mind that I might change the title in the future if it doesn't end up fitting all stories. :D Enjoy!
Zack Fair was a morning person. He loved his glass of juice, followed by a nice serving of cereal—with the little marshmallows shaped like dinosaurs—followed by a nice steaming cup of coffee when he was usually joined by his wife.
On that morning however, he caught sight of familiar, disheveled raven spikes as big blue eyes peered at him from the other side of the counter. "Hey, stranger! What are you doing up so early?" he asked before taking a spoonful of his cereal.
"I drank too much water before bed."
"And I warned you about that, didn't I?" Zack questioned.
"But I made it in time!" the child exclaimed.
Zack grinned. "That's awesome, buddy!"
"Yeah?" Zack asked absently, eyes darting to the morning comics to scan for his favorites.
"Where do babies come from?"
He choked and a dribble of milk exited his mouth, much to the giggles of his five year old son.
"Wha—wha—why are you asking?"
"Well, Kadaj told me that a magic chocobo delivers babies to their new homes, but then Marlene said that Santa brought them to their parents!" the boy exclaimed brightly.
"Uh," Zack articulated, trying to shake himself out of his stupor. He was still struggling to answer when he was saved by an angel.
"Good morning!" said a sweet voice as his wife entered the kitchen, looking at the two curiously. "You're up early, Miles." She paused and stared at Zack's wide eyes. "Why?"
"Papa promised me that we could go to the zoo today!" Miles said, jumping up and down, giving her the dreaded puppy dog look.
"He did, did he? I thought we had planned to visit the Science Center today," she said, narrowing her eyes at the two men she loved the most in her life.
"Maybe we can do that next weekend?" Zack asked, putting on a mirror pout on his lips. He'd honestly forgotten he'd promised the boy a trip to the zoo if he'd allow him to take a nap the previous afternoon.
Tifa gave them both a hard look and sighed. "Okay. Fine, we'll go to the zoo today…"
"Yay!" the two chorused.
"Sometimes I wonder who the child is," Tifa muttered, moving to the counter to pour herself a cup of coffee.
Zack grinned and shrugged, standing at her back and curling his arms around her waist and kissing her cheek. "Miles has a question for you, sweetheart. Good luck with that." With a sound smack to her bottom, he jogged off to their bedroom, leaving his lovely wife to answer the boy's question.
"What did you want to know, sweetie?" she asked her son.
Miles walked around the counter and clambered up onto a stool while Tifa poured him his own bowl of cereal. "I asked papa where babies come from and he didn't tell me."
Tifa nearly spilled her coffee over the rim and onto her hand as she whirled to look at the boy. Where was he getting his questions from? Last week it had been why he could no longer sleep in bed with them, and the week before that, why he couldn't kiss little girls at school when he was allowed to kiss her and aunt Yuffie.
She listened as the boy repeated what he had said to his father earlier and felt like rubbing a hand over her face in exasperation. The 'chocobo delivering babies' sounded like a story Aerith would've told Kadaj, even to Sephiroth's chagrin. For all her sweetness and caring for anyone and everyone, Aerith was very… soft for certain things. But Tifa honestly feared what Sephiroth's explanation would've been, had he been in charge of answering his son's question.
"Ah, well no, Miles. Babies are not delivered by birds," Tifa said with a smile, rubbing a hand through the boy's spiky hair. "A baby grows for a couple of months in a mommy's tummy. There the baby waits until he's ready and strong enough to come out and be with his or her mommy and daddy."
"But… how does the baby get there?" asked Miles, confused.
"Well, that's actually a secret and you won't be able to know until you're an adult like mommy," Tifa replied, smile tightening a little with her sugarcoated answer. What else could she tell a five year old? She was going to kill Zack for leaving this up to her…
"Miles, honey, why don't you go and get dressed so that we can get going to the zoo?" Tifa asked.
"Okay!" he said happily, jumping off of the stool and abandoning his half-eaten breakfast and his dubiously answered questions.
Tifa let out a small sigh of relief and sipped her nearly forgotten coffee. Avoidance would only get her so far, she knew, but she'd been blindsided and she hadn't thought she'd be hearing that question so soon.
"So? How'd it go?" came Zack's voice from the doorway as he pulled a shirt over his finely toned chest.
Tifa glared at him and shrugged. "I'm not going to tell you because that way, when he eventually asks in the future again, it'll be your turn to deal with the answer."
Zack groaned loudly. "But why? He didn't seem too traumatized when he left the kitchen! Why do I have to talk to him about it next time?"
The smile that curled Tifa's lips made him antsy as she approached him. Sliding her arms around his waist this time, she looked up at her handsome and sometimes childish husband. "Half of him is yours, so take responsibility for your half or our baby making time will be cut by half."
Blue eyes widened. "By half?"
"Yes," Tifa said sweetly, standing on the tips of her toes so that she could press a soft kiss to his lips. "And don't even think about pouting at me."
"Fine," Zack muttered, leaning in to press his forehead against hers. "I guess I'll also have to teach him the art of picking up ladies, too."
"He'll be a ladies' man, just like me." He jumped a step back before her hand could connect with the back of his head and he blew her a kiss before racing out of the kitchen to check on their son.
Tifa smiled gently to herself and began to wash the used dishes before they had to leave for the day. Zack was insufferable when he wanted to be, but she couldn't deny that he was handsome, charming, and with a heart of gold. Her son would grow up to be an amazing person if he was anything like his father.
She just hoped that the girl problem didn't happen for a long, long time.