Hey, all my future readers! This is my first fanfic, so wish me luck, k? It will eventually be the prologue, or at least a part of an epic story I'm planning, but don't have time to actually write down until sometime next week. So, tell me if you think I should continue it or not (if you say something negative, make it a worthwhile comment, not just "it sucks"). That's all I need to say, on with the fic!!

Time Alone

He sat alone, perched far above the temple floor on an old wooden ceiling beam, eyes trained toward the altar below. A lazy breeze blew through the holes in the roof, playing with his hair and lifting a few strands toward the sky. He brushed them back down irritably and placed his hand back on the beam. He still felt uncomfortable up here, even though he had sat in this very same spot innumerable times before. It wasn't a fear of heights that made him uneasy, it was a distinct feeling of not belonging in this holy place. And why should he not feel that way? He was, after all, the murderer of a whole town. **A whole town...and one**, a voice in his mind added cruelly. He shook his head. Not today. Please, not today. He wanted time alone now, a day, an hour, a minute. Anything, please Gods.

**If you wish, my son. **

He sighed in thanks as he felt a pressure lift off his shoulders. She was gone. He knew she would return, and soon, but for now...bliss. Freedom. Something he hadn't felt in years...in 14 years, in fact, 14 years to the day. Sephiroth bowed his head in remembrance of that time. The wind played at his hair, tugging strands upward more insistently now. He looked upward, bracing himself on the beam, and let the sunlight wash over his face. He shut his eyes and smiled. He remembered the sunlight in Wutai and how it had warmed his face like this. For the first time since he returned, Sephiroth allowed himself to remember Wutai. The sunlight there, to him at least, was unlike the sunlight anywhere else. The way it shone on the dew in the mornings made every blade of grass glitter. Even the rows and rows of ShinRa army tents had a kind of beauty under the Wutai sunlight. He began to relax and enjoy the scenery running through his mind. Blue skies, the brightest he had ever seen in his life stretched out above him. Mountains soared to dizzying heights above his head, and Sephiroth was finally treated to a vision of actual life unaffected by Hojo's laboratory. He felt alive again. He breathed in the fresh air and listened to the footsteps of fellow SOLDIERS behind him. **~Crunch. Crunch-crunch.~** Through the grass they walked, on their way to a mission of destruction, but Sephiroth wasn't thinking of that. **~Crunch. Crunch-crunch~**...**~Tap.~** A single green eye popped open at the top of the temple. **~Tap.~**

**What the hell was that?**

He searched the floor of the temple for the source of the interruption, the edges of his vision tinged with Mako green light. **~Tap-tap-tap-tap...~** He let go of the beam and drew his sword quietly. **~Hssssshhhh...~** How did anyone find out he was here? This was his place, dammit, and these were his memories. The last thing he needed was someone intruding on the oh-so-precious time alone. Sephiroth held his breath, waiting.

Through the space between two beams, Sephiroth caught a glimpse of his prey. Its brown hair caught a sunbeam, making it shine gold for an instant. Sephiroth's breath caught in his throat. He sat motionless, clutching the Masamune like a lifeline. The girl stepped closer to the altar, her footsteps no longer annoying to the silver-haired fighter above her. Each tap of her foot filled Sephiroth with an unreasonable and equally uncontrollable hope. Finally, when he was sure he could no longer breathe, she came into full view. **No!** He let out the breath he hadn't realized he had been holding. **Not her, not her**...he repeated the words in his head like a mantra. A single tear slid unnoticed down the warrior's cheek as he silently watched the girl kneel and bow her head. He sat transfixed watching the sunlight play off her hair, turning it golden brown and heartbreakingly beautiful.

As suddenly as she had left, the weight within Sephiroth returned.

**My son...**

The last things Sephiroth felt as his mind became hers again were his arms raising the Masamune and the final tears tracing down his face.

**My beloved son...**