The Intruder

"I don't trust you," Sephiroth said flatly.

He stood on the front porch of the house he and his family lived in. Glaring at his adversary, he continued speaking:

"You came waltzing in, with your carefree demeanor, and that wild black hair of yours, charming my wife. Even the kids like you. However, I see what you're really up to. I'd hoped that Balthazar would keep you away like a good guardian animal, but for whatever reason, he's useless when you come around. Alpha wolf, my ass…"

The family pet, a large reddish-grey wolf, raised his head at the mention of his name. He then looked around, and lay back down, content to nap on the porch as he always did.

"You rub it in my face, and then when I'm rightfully angry, I'm the bad guy. I don't know why you can't go bug someone else. Why not Cloud? He lives right next door. Go bug him. Go! Now!"

Violet eyes stared back at him, mocking him.

"Very well," Sephiroth stood up and went to the side of the house, retrieving the hose that Aeris often used whenever Keter and Remi would get into fist-fights. "I've asked you, and you have no intention of listening to me. You leave me no choice…"

A window opened and Aeris stuck her head out.

"Seph!" she shouted, "Don't you dare use the hose on him! He's not bothering anyone!"

"He's a pain in the ass!" Sephiroth growled as he readied the hose, "This bastard needs to learn his place,"

"Stop being a drama queen and leave that poor kitty alone!" Aeris warned him.

"Meow!" the small black cat cried out. He began scratching his spikey black head. Again, his violet eyes stared innocently at Sephiroth.

"I mean it, Seph!" Aeris then closed the window.

Sephiroth could swear that the stray cat was grinning at him. It had been like this for days, since he'd strolled up to Aeris last week and began rubbing his head against her legs, purring and being the way cats were when they charmed women and children.

"Hey, there!" a cheery voice called out.

Sephiroth looked up and saw Zack strolling up to the porch.

"Oh, wow!" Zack exclaimed when he saw the cat. "When'd you get it?"

"The cat is not ours," Sephiroth informed him.

"Kitty, kitty!" Zack beckoned the cat over. The small animal padded over, rubbing his black spikes against Zack's own black spikes as the ex-SOLDIER crouched down.

"He doesn't seem to have an owner," Sephiroth remarked, "You two seem to get along quite well. If you want him, take him,"

Zack gasped at the cat. "How about that?" he asked it, "You wanna come home with me? Yeah, you do! Come on, buddy!"

The cat leaped right into Zack's arms.

"Thanks for hooking me up!" he exclaimed, "How come you guys didn't keep him?"

"That bastard loves to scratch me, for whatever reason," Sephiroth grumbled, "Of course, Aeris doesn't believe me, since I heal so quickly, and he won't do it in front of her or the kids. When I get angry, she thinks I'm being a bully,"

"Sucks to be you!" Zack laughed as he walked away, "Thanks again, Sephiroth! Who's a cute kitty-kitty…?"

Sephiroth sighed as he sat down next to Balthazar. The wolf whined and nudged Sephiroth's elbow with his nose. The mercenary smiled as he scratched his pet behind the ears. Balthazar happily licked his master's face.

"You're still useless," Sephiroth told the animal.

Balthazar yawned indifferently.