Like The Blind Leading The Deaf

BY : Quinninism
Category: Final Fantasy VII > Het - Male/Female
Dragon prints: 1927
Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy or its characters. I do not make any money from this Fanfiction

Chapter 1

Light rain fell relentlessly from the sky as black clouds drew in. The sun had long since gone, leaving the world seemingly empty, lifeless and dark. Even though things had been getting better on the planet after another epic battle between light and dark, there seemed to be a lot of disturbing weather happening recently. Storms were stirring all over, and rain fall wasn’t uncommon. It was like the planet was trying to wash itself clean, start a new after the recent cure of the geostigma. The planet was becoming healthy again at long last, though the effects were not as apparent as one would have hoped.

A young man pulled up on a motorcycle outside a derelict church in the ruin of sector 7. His hair fell over his impossibly bright blue eyes, water dripping down his face and from his chin. He didn’t seem to notice the cold wind that snapped at his clothes as he kicked the stand down and got off his bike, looking around at his surroundings all the while. It looked like yet another heavy storm was heading in, but he planned to be quick.

It really had been too long since he had been here. Things had just been so busy recently with his small business taking up most of his time that he had missed out on the peaceful atmosphere that still resided in the small, crumbling church. He mentally noted how he really should do something about the mess as continued towards the small retreat.

He remembered the pillars that lay broken along the floor, the wooden seats destroyed and strewn messily around, and the giant crater of water that lay in the now missing floor where a mass of white flowers had once grown so healthily in these baron lands, or so it had been the last time he was here. The once pristine and beautiful church had been a recent battlefield in his mission to save the world, and he had regretted it’s almost destruction deeply. It was like everything was centred on this place. But then again, if he hadn’t torn through here in pursuit of another on his motorcycle, he probably would never have found a cure for the geostigma which plagued most of the world.

As he approached the entrance, he noticed one of the doors was open slightly. Confused, he thought back to his last time he had been here, remembering that he had definitely shut them properly, and even locked them when he left. He subconsciously reached for the hilt of his sward that was hanging on his back as he quietly opened the door further with an eerie creak. He would have to sort that at some point too.

When he looked in, everything seemed normal, well, as normal as he had left it last time… wait, was that blood? On the old wooden floor, there was a definite deep crimson blood trail travelling down towards the pool of water at the altar. He listened intently, trying to figure out who or what was here. There was hitched breathing coming from one of the front benches, and the odd moan here and there. Whatever it was, Cloud was ready.

He moved quickly but quietly down the aisle, expertly calculating his options and surroundings, senses alert, until he saw it. His eyes softened slightly as he came to a halt, questions flooding his thoughts.

A small girl was curled up and asleep on the front bench, her clothes, which were ripped and slashed, barely covering her body, clung to her pale skin. She was soaking. Many deep cuts and wounds marred her body, and bruising was clearly evident in the dim light. Her feet looked badly damaged: she had no shoes. Her body shivered uncontrollably, the winds picking up and scooping down through the hole in the roof, which he really, really needed to fix, and her bloody fingers tugged uselessly at her ‘clothes’.

He felt his heart ache as he approached the girl, watching her intently. She moved slightly, and let out a gasp, grasping her left arm tightly, which caught him a little off guard. So she wasn’t sleeping after all.

“Are you alright?” he asked softly, trying to calm her. The girl suddenly jumped to her feet, fear clearly evident in her eyes, and grabbed the nearest thing to her, which was a chunk of wood, and pointed it towards the blonde threateningly. Her body shook from the effort, and she swayed slightly. The blonde put his hands up in submission, panicking as her condition seemed worse than he had first thought. “I’m not going to hurt you.” The sound of his voice seemed to make the girl flinch.

The girl’s eyes shot from the giant, ominous, impossibly big ass sward on his back to his eyes. They were a brilliant blue, just like… she inwardly cursed at herself for bringing him up at a time like this, his stupid haunting face now plaguing her thoughts.

The young man sighed realising how unapproachable he must look, shaking his head at his lack of thought as he undid the buckles on his sward holder, taking it off, and putting it down on the ground next to him. The girl’s grip on the chunk of wood relaxed, but she still pointed it at him. He rose with his hands back up defensively, slowly so as not to alarm her, showing he was now unarmed. He took a step forward and regretted it almost immediately when the girl tensed, attempted to jump back, but ended up only gasping horribly in pain. He stopped quickly, noting how rapidly blood was pooling at her feet. Time was of the essence.

“Let me help you. You’re bleeding badly, and you look exhausted.” He waited patiently for an answer, but all he received was an icy stare. He sighed again and dropped his hands. He looked pleadingly at the girl before sitting down on the blood stained bench. The girl stood stalk still. “Why don’t you put the stick down, I only want to help you…” he watched the girl as she relaxed again, but the icy stare remained. “You can come back with me, and we’ll get some food into you and a bed for you to sleep in? You look like you haven’t had either for a while.” Sadness flashed in the girl’s eyes, and the icy stare dissipated slightly. “What’s your name?” he asked in a soft voice, trying to gain her trust. He was running out of time. She just watched the blonde, contemplating on what to do. Her eyes flashed at the door, and she looked at the many paths she could take to escape. “My name’s Cloud.” He smiled at her, hoping to get her to open up, even just a little, mentally noting her obvious thoughts of escape.

The girl swayed slightly, and her legs gave way without warning. She landed on the ground with a bone crushing thump, her head falling forward dangerously. The blonde jumped up from the seat and lunged over to her. When he reached out a hand, the girl quickly but pathetically slapped it away. She coughed hard, blood dripping from her lips, a pool of it forming in her hand. Cloud tried to touch her again, and was met with another feeble swat. “Please, let me help.” He sounded sincere, and genuinely worried, but the girl had met her fair share of liars. She coughed again, hard, and crawled away, picking her stick up, and aiming it back at the blonde. Cloud sighed. It hurt to see her so utterly defenceless. 

Sitting up straighter he looked around the room. He had a first aid kit in his bike, but he didn’t want to leave the girl, in case she tried to run away, not that she would get very far, but she was obviously in danger. He looked through the hole in the roof to see that the black clouds had reached them, and the rain began to fall heavier. He turned back to the girl to see the rain had started falling relentlessly on her shivering form, giving no visible end to her misery. She seemed un-phased by the water dropping onto her as she continued to stubbornly threaten Cloud with her wooden weapon. He was about to speak again when he noticed the focus in her eyes leaving. She gasped rather painfully as her body violently shook, and fell over from its sitting position. He quickly stuck out his arm to catch her, and she flopped over him limply. She lay in his arms, motionless, whimpering quietly as she drifted into unconsciousness.

Cloud sighed for what felt like the hundredth time that night, and picked her up, carrying her back to the bench. He then lay her down and headed out to his bike, retrieving his first aid kit. His mind raced as he thought of the possibilities of what could have happened to her, and how he was going to possibly fix it. He had never seen her before, though he wasn’t exactly well known for paying attention to people. He wondered that with her pale skin she may be from one of the more northern cities. But how had she gotten here? Of all places... he couldn’t help but wonder if this was another of Aerith’s workings...

He tidied up, the best he could, most of the many cuts and slashes on her arms, legs and feet. He didn’t want to start working on her body until she was awake, so she didn’t think he was up to no good. He did want her to trust him after all. He fumbled some more with awkward bandaging on her feet when he heard a soft moan come from the girl. He looked over to her face to see her eyes were open and looking at his chest, face in shock, and tears forming at the corners of her eyes. She then quickly looked at her arms and legs, and noticed he hadn’t gone any further. She smiled weakly in thanks, but refused to make eye contact as she sat up shakily. 

Cloud sat down next to her and motioned for her to look at him. She complied, but her eyes stared off to the left of him, obviously concentrating on everything else except his face. Cloud didn’t mind however, tending to the deep gash that she had seemed to have acquired above her eye brow. She sat still as he brought some tape out of the kit, and closed the gash up with it. She grimaced a little in pain as he cleaned the blood off her face, but it was barely noticeable.

“Some mess you’re in. Want to talk about what happened yet?” Cloud was beginning to think she couldn’t understand him when she looked blankly at the floor. Then she looked at the sky through the ceiling and sort of smiled, a sad smile that made something inside of him tighten painfully. “Why don’t you let me look at -” his hand was swatted away again when he tugged lightly at her rags. “I won’t do anything, I just want to fix you up.” he found himself sighing again as she slid away from him, turning her back in defiance. And that was when he noticed the dirty big bite mark on her neck. No wonder she was pulling away from him! “Who did that to you?” Cloud asked a little harshly. Lots of ideas were going through his mind, most of them ending in rape and sexual abuse. The girl just looked back over her shoulder to see him pointing to the mark, but said nothing. Cloud found himself sighing again, frustration making its way in as well as this unexpected overly protective need. “A storm is on its way, and you’ll be freezing here. Why don’t I take you home? To my home that is, where you’ll be safe.” he noticed her body tense, and she violently shook her head, causing her to moan in pain as she grabbed her left shoulder again, her body tipping over precariously. 

Cloud slid over to her and felt her shoulder while bracing her with his other hand that he had carefully placed just above her chest. He had noticed that she hadn’t moved her arm much, and his suspicions were confirmed when he felt it hanging loosely from its joint. She closed her eyes tightly as Cloud felt around some more, checking the damage.

“On the count of three, I’m going to relocate your arm okay?” he waited for some sign that she was ready, and she curtly nodded in response. “One… two -” the girl choked back a scream as he pulled her arm up, and relocated it. He was a little surprised at how well she seemed to handle it. Not a tear in sight. The girl rubbed her shoulder protectively, and smiled weakly, but still no eye contact was made. Cloud produced a sling from his kit, and secured her arm, all the while panicking about the small talk he was soon going to have to make.

When he did as much as she would allow him to do, he noticed her eyes were beginning to close again, but this time from exhaustion.

“Sleepy?” he continued trying to get her to talk, but seemed to be failing miserably.

So this is how it feels to be on the other side… He inwardly joked with himself. He had only just started to talk to people normally again. No wonder Tifa cracked up… Surprised she didn’t kick the crap out of me...

He untied the large cloak that hung from around his waist, and wrapped it around the girl’s shivering body. She was so thin he was scared that just his touch might break her. She resisted at first, pulling away from him and yelping in pain, but when his insanely strong grip didn’t seem to be letting up any time soon, she gave up, and reluctantly cuddled into the warmth he provided. She continued to shiver violently, which had cause for concern, but eventually calmed until she rested gently against Cloud’s chest.

The girl however could not sleep as guilt began to build up, realisation how rude she had been to the blonde hitting her harder than she had expected. He had been so patient with her, and nice! He didn’t even sex her up either… And he probably could have with the weakened state she was in. She had been told such people existed, but to see it in action was something else. She sighed as she tried to find the words to apologise, but they just wouldn’t come out. It had been so long since she had actually spoken words to someone that she wasn’t sure she could anymore. As she drifted off, she whispered the only thing she could manage: 

“Thank you.” Cloud let his grip slacken when he heard her, his panic lifting a little. He smiled slightly as he felt her breathing level out, indicating she was asleep. Well, at least now he knew she could talk.


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