Premonitions II-A: The Long Week of Hell

BY : Hippo_and_Friends_with_Benefits
Category: Final Fantasy VII > General
Dragon prints: 982
Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy VII or any characters therin. I am making no money off of this work.

Hello, Hippo and Friends with Benefits here.  This is where you’ll find the complete, uncensored version of Premonitions II.  But, instead of sandwiching all the stories together,  like in the censored version, I kept everything separate.  That way, you can follow each story arc, one at a time.  The correct chronology is actually Crisis Core, The Long Week of Hell, and then finally Vincent’s Blues.

Chapter 1: The Continental Governor

January 28, 0008

Monday

4:00 p.m.

The Continental Governor stood facing out of the window. Her office was on the third floor of an otherwise unimportant building in Nibelheim, yet she was the most powerful person on the Western Continent. Officially, she had been the Continental Governor for twelve years. In practice, she only had actual power for a few weeks. She had been appointed a figurehead by the Shinra to make the continent's government appear democratic. Now that the Shinra was gone, the power had passed to her.

She was blond with short hair, and about thirty-five years old. She had no term limit; Continental Governors were appointed for life. She might very well leave her position in a coffin. Given her age, she would, in theory, serve for a very long time.

It had been a long day. She had been updating records and signing pardons for those that the Shinra had punished unfairly. Now, it was four in the afternoon; the time her office closed. She sighed in relief that the day was over. And then, she groaned when she realized that it was not. There was one final loose end she had not tired up. It was the last thing she had to take care of before she could retire for the day.

"I'll see her now," she called to her open door.

A few moments later, young woman of nineteen or twenty entered the room. She had long, raven hair, and chestnut eyes. She was wearing a black short-skirt, and a white crop-tank.

The Continental Governor was not impressed with her attire. She was the most powerful person on the Western Continent, and preferred to be treated formally. She would no doubt impose a dress code the next morning.

"Have you been waiting long?" she asked.

"Since one," the girl replied.

The Continental Governor immediately became offended.

"With all of these sudden changes, you have to know how busy we are!"

"I didn't mean to criticize," the girl insisted. "You asked."

"I suppose we shouldn't waste any more time, then," the Continental Governor suggested as she sat down at her desk, and signaled for the girl to do so. "Now then," she continued, "you came to see me for a serious reason?"

"Two, actually," the girl replied.

"Could I have your name, please?" asked the Continental Governor as she booted up her laptop. "Last, first, and middle."

"Lockheart," the girl replied. "Tiffany Claire. Call me Tifa."

"So, Miss Lockheart," the Continental Governor continued, "what can I do for you?"

"I'm here to correct a faulty record," Tifa replied. "A person who is still alive was mistakenly declared dead."

"Well," said the Continental Governor, "that's most definitely a serious reason. You've certainly come to the right place to take care of that."

"The person mistakenly declared dead," Tifa continued, "is my father, Brian Lockheart."

The Continental Governor folded her hands.

"I don't believe there's a faulty record there, Miss Lockheart," she said.

"But there was no body officially recovered," Tifa protested. "At least not according to records. It seems as if the Shinra simply made a decision without checking the facts."

"You said there was a second reason you came here today," the Continental Governor said, completely disregarding Tifa's previous comment.

"I'm also here to register for a marriage license," Tifa replied. "This Saturday, I go from a Miss to a Mrs."

"Let's hope this situation doesn't hinder your enjoyment of that."

Tifa felt her stomach tighten. She was well aware that she, along with the rest of her friends, were still considered fugitives.

"What do you mean?" she asked.

"You realize, Miss Lockheart, that you are among the Western Continent's most wanted terrorists?"

"I've heard rumors," Tifa replied.

"Blowing up two mako reactors, using trains without tickets, assult on Shinra employees, misuse of Shinra property, illegally boarding a Shinra barge, summoning of Meteor, escape from Shinra detention, theft of Shinra property, illegal entry of Shinra Headquarters, twice. These charges have been passed on to the Continental Governors of all three continents," the Continental governor informed her. "I'm going on the presumption that you claim that you're innocent?"

"That is correct," Tifa confirmed.

"You know, of course, that I have to interrogate you," the Continental Governor confirmed as she opened a new file on her laptop.

"I figured," Tifa agreed. "I do have a story to back up my actions."

"Let's hear it."

"Will it count as the interrogation?" Tifa asked.

"It's a simple formality," the Continental Governor replied. "But I do need to warn you not to volunteer anything beyond the questions I ask, okay? Nothing."

"I'll try," Tifa answered. "But I can't be hiding vital information if I'm not asked about it."

"Were you involved in the expedition that ultimately led to the phenomenon that destroyed Meteor?" the Continental Governor asked.

"I was," Tifa replied.

"Were you involved by accident?" the Continental Governor then asked.

"In a way," Tifa replied. "It all began when a friend of mine was murdered. I tried to bring his murderer to justice, and everything ran away with itself." She paused. "You're not typing anything."

"I'm not yet understanding why this is important," the Continental Governor replied.

"Everything I say should be important," Tifa insisted.

"Remember," continued the Continental Governor, "it's your name we're trying to clear here. If we were trying to clear anyone else's, things would be different."

"Well," Tifa said, "now that you mention that, there are nine of us who need our names cleared."

"We'll get to the others as your story progresses, no doubt," the Continental Governor said. "Now you said you were trying to being your friend's murderer to justice. What date was this?"

"August the nineteenth," Tifa replied.

"0007?"

"0016."

The Continental Governor took her hands away from her laptop, and gave Tifa a troubled look.

"You are either extremely honest or extremely deluded," she pointed out in a cross tone of voice.

"I try to be the former," Tifa stressed.

"The date you gave me is more than eight years from now. How is that even possible?"

"It's a long story, and I know it's hard to believe, but I can prove it. Will you listen?"

"You have as much time as anybody else," the Continental Governor replied.

"This all began on the night of August 19, 0016. I was about to go out with my husband when I got word that a boy I had raised had been murdered."

"Records show that you've never been married," the Continental Governor pointed out.

"This is the future," she said. "You won't find any record of it."

"Continue," the Continental Governor commanded.

"I met up with Cloud Strife-that's who I'm getting married to, by the way-and Barret Wallace at the crime scene," Tifa continued. "We realized that it was Bestla Heidegger who had murdered him. Now, I know you're going to tell me she died in Midgar a couple of weeks ago, and I'll explain that later. In 0016, we tracked her down. As it turned out, she was after a device allied the Chronos Wand. Whoever got a hold of it could use it to go anywhere, any time."

"Why did she want it?" asked the Continental Governor.

"She wanted to come back to this time," Tifa replied. "Sephiroth's goal was to absorb the Lifestream and become a god. Bestla's intention was to kill Sephiroth and take his place. She would kill us, have Meteor fall, absorb the Lifestream, and become a goddess herself."

"And you didn't stop her in 0016?"

"She killed us," Tifa replied. "Barret first, then me, then Cloud. Bestla had this gun full of blue energy. Anything she zapped with it turned to dust seconds later. She zapped a bridge Barret had been on and turned it to dust, causing him to fall to his death. She then zapped me, turning me to dust. She then shot Cloud in the stomach with a regular firearm."

"You look a little to alive to be dead," the Continental Governor pointed out.

"In short, my death was undone by the changed timeline," Tifa clarified. "So Bestla used the Chronus Wand and traveled back to December 9, 0007. She thought it would be easy, but she wasn't prepared for the rules of time travel."

"Rules?" the Continental Governor asked, bewildered. "Time travel actually has rules?"

"Four rules, to be exact," Tifa replied. "One, people with have premonitions of the future if someone goes back in time. If you've been getting premonitions over the last month and a half, that's why."

"I'll admit I have been," the Continental Governor said.

"Two," Tifa continued, "if you're having premonitions and you enter the Lifestream, you'll fully regain your memories from your future life."

"And that is how you remember dying in the future?" the Continental Governor asked.

"You got it," Tifa replied. "Three, past events can be changed. But the timeline fights back. If you save someone who was supposed to drown, they might get hit by a car later on."

"You're saying that time is alive?" asked the Continental Governor suspiciously.

"I'm not sure," Tifa answered. "But we know the planet is, so all bets are off. Four, if someone cheats death, the premonitions stop."

"So how did it feel?" asked the Continental Governor. "To be killed?"

"It's hard to describe," Tifa replied. "Bestla zapped me with her blaster, I tearfully said good-bye to Cloud, and I felt my body dry up. I then found myself at my Seventh Heaven bar, serving drinks while Cloud and Barret invaded Reactor Number One."

"So you're testifying that two other wanted terrorists did indeed destroy Reactor Number One?" inquired the Continental Governor.

Tifa was silent.

"Whatever happened in Midgar, Kalm, or Junon needs to be discussed with the Continental Governor of the Eastern Continent," explained the Continental Governor. "That's out of my jurisdiction. I'm also assuming those two blew up the Sector Five Reactor the next day?"

"You got it," Tifa replied. "I went along that time."

"Why did you stop?" asked the Continental Governor.

"Cloud got separated from us when we blew it," Tifa replied. "When we reunited, we learned that the Shinra were going to destroy the Sector Seven pillar. We tried to stop them, but they succeeded anyway. We then infiltrated the Shinra Building, and met Red XIII. We were captured during our escape. We later found our cell doors wide open, and that President Shinra had been killed by Sephiroth. We then managed to escape the building and the city."

"And yet you didn't blow up any more reactors in all that confusion," the Continental Governor pointed out.

"Our mission changed when we got to Kalm," Tifa explained. "Cloud told us about his experience with Sephiroth, and how he built up his basic disgust of the human race. We then decided to pursue him."

"When did you get to the Western Continent?" asked the Continent Governor. "Where it really mattered?"

"We then went to Junon and took the barge over to Costa del Sol," Tifa answered. "On the way there, we encountered Sephiroth. He killed a few soldiers, but spared Rufus and all of the other executives."

"And what happened after you landed in Costa del Sol?" inquired the Continental Governor.

"We headed through Mount Corel and stopped at Gold Saucer. There we met Cait Sith, who was actually a robotic avatar controlled by the former Shinra executive Reeve Tuesti. Unaware of this, we let him join us."

"After Gold Saucer," continued the Continental Governor, "what did you do?"

"We stopped at Cosmo Canyon," Tifa continued. "We learned the true nature of the planet there. We then passed through Nibelheim, where we met Vincent Valentine, and Rocket Town, where we met Cid Highwind. Soon afterwards, we found the Temple of the Ancients, which Sephiroth turned into the black materia. That was what he used to summon Meteor."

"Continue," commanded the Continental Governor. "So far it looks like you've done no wrong under my jurisdiction."

"I forgot to mention," replied Tifa, "we also met Yuffie Kisaragi. We let her join us, but we had to reclaim our property from her several times."

"Yuffie Kisaragi, along with Vincent Valentine, Red XIII, Reeve Tuetsi, and Cid Highwind, are not wanted for any crimes whatsoever," the Continental Governor said. "But, now would be a good time to file charges of theft against her if you so desire."

"I'll pass," Tifa dismissed.

"What happened after the Temple of the Ancients?" asked the Continental Governor.

"We departed the Western Continent at that point," Tifa answered. "We went to the Northern Continent and made our way through Bone Village, the Sleeping Forest, the Forgotten Capital, Icicle Inn, and endless fields of snow before reaching the North Pole. That was where Sephiroth summoned Meteor, and we were captured by the Shinra. Cloud got separated from the rest of us."

"Since you're getting married," the Continental Governor pointed out, "may I assume you found him?"

"Eventually, yes," Tifa replied. "We were originally taken back to Junon on the Eastern Continent. We shared a cell with Bestla. She escaped with the help of Nara, who I can only see her as her sidekick. We escaped being executed by stealing the Shinra 2000 and renaming it the Highwind. That was also when Junon was destroyed by Bestla when she dropped a blue energy orb on the city. We found Cloud in Mideel. We both fell into the Lifestream there, where we regained our memories from 0016."

"Continue," commanded the Continental Governor.

"We returned to the Western Continent. Barret helped prevent a train from crashing into North Corel. The lives he helped save were in the double digits."

"Can you think of anything even remotely illegal that you did on the Western Continent?"

"One thing, maybe," Tifa replied. "We snuck into the Shinra Number 26 and loaded it with extra materia. Meteor was delayed as a result, and possibly bought us enough time to save the planet."

"That's technically a crime," the Continental Governor said. "But as it no doubt saved us all, I can issue you all a pardon for that."

"Thank you," Tifa said.

"I take it everything else was done on the Eastern Continent?" asked the Continental Governor.

"Mostly," Tifa answered. "Our friend Yuffie was captured, and we mounted a rescue mission. In the process, we killed Heidegger, Scarlet, Palmer, Hojo, and Rufus, all in self-defense."

"The Eastern Continent might demand extradition," the Continental Governor warned.

"I'll be happy to explain the circumstances," Tifa volunteered.

"May I ask, what happened to the Bestla from 0016?" asked the Continental Governor. "I know the present day Bestla was killed by debris."

"She tried to destroy Midgar the same way she destroyed Junon. She tried to drop another blue energy orb, but, instead, she destroyed herself, along with the 0016 Urchin. The debris from the 0016 Urchin killed the 0008 Bestla."

"The 0016 Urchin?" asked the Continental Governor. "You mean there's a 0008 Urchin somewhere?"

"There was," Tifa replied. "It was flown into the barrier over the Northern Crater. That was who we were able to enter the caves and find Sephiroth. We fought him, and he escaped. We found him at the Nibel Reactor and engaged him in a final showdown."

"Well," continued the Continental Governor, "as we are here, you've obviously defeated him."

Tifa nodded. "At great cost, yes we did."

"You still observe that I'm not typing anything," the Continental Governor then said.

"I do," Tifa confirmed.

"Getting back to your quest," the Continental Governor then said.

"You mean my search for my father?" Tifa asked.

"Miss Lockheart," continued the Continental Governor, "you're wandering in a foolish direction."

"With all due respect," Tifa said, "I've been told that in some form or another several times. Nobody has been able to convince me to stop."

"I can't protect you everywhere," said the Continental Governor. "Even on the Western Continent. Not everyone obeys the law. This kind of search could get you killed."

"It's a risk I'm willing to take," Tifa insisted. "I have to know the truth. If my father is alive and I never save him, I won't ever be able to live with myself. I can't have it any other way."

The Continental Governor sighed. She reached for a picture on the right side of her desk and turned it one hundred and eighty degrees, revealing a couple who somewhat looked like her.

"These are my parents," she began. "My father died four years ago. And my mother three years before that in the Wutai War. I still miss them terribly, Miss Lockheart. Every now and then, I wonder if there's any way possible that they could somehow still be alive. But reality always sets in, and I have to accept that they're dead. I sorely want them back, but I can only move forward."

"You honor," Tifa said, "this does go beyond wishful thinking. When Cloud and I were in the Lifestream, we saw the souls of our deceased loved ones. We saw Cloud's parents. We saw two members of Avalanche. We saw my mother, but not my father. If he had died, he should have been there."

"And that is the burden of your belief that he's still alive?" asked the Continental Governor.

"There were two other people who we expected to see in the Lifestream, but didn't," Tifa said. "We later found both of them alive and well."

"I see," said the Continental Governor. "Tell me, would your father want you risking your life for him?"

"Probably not," Tifa replied. "But I've been asked that before as well. I'm sorry, but I've made my descision to search for him, and I will not stop until I find him. And no one, not even the Continental Governor, and convince me to quit."

The Continental Governor stood up, and gave Tifa a threatening look.

"You know," she warned, "if it pleases me, you might sleep the night in jail."

"Your honor, I've slept the night in worse places," Tifa replied.

"I am curious," the Continental Governor continued, "why were you really here? Were you hoping to get information out of me about his possible whereabouts?"

"I was," Tifa answered.

The Continental Governor gave her a surprised look.

"You're being that open with me?"

"I can't perjure myself, can I?" asked Tifa.

"I'm sorry," said the Continental Governor, "but I have no information on your father, except for the fact that he was reported killed on October 1, 0002."

Tifa lowered her head in sadness. It was certainly not the answer that she had been hoping for.

"It's time to close up," the Continental Governor suddenly announced.

"I'm not finished," Tifa protested.

"No need to worry," assured the Continental Governor as she stood up and pointed her entire left hand toward her office door. "I'll call for you again this week."

Unable to anything about the impasse, and wanting to avoid being arrested, Tifa duly made her way to the door.

"And Miss Lockheart?" called the Continental Governor.

Tifa made eye contact with her, but did not verbally answer.

"Don't ever come into my office dressed like that again."

Tifa left the office, closing the door behind her.

Without further ado, the Continental Governor sat down at her desk and began to log out of her laptop. It was already a long day, but her interrogation with that girl had made it seem twice as long.

And then, a shadow covered her face.

The Continental Governor looked up at the figure bearing down on her. He was well-built and muscular. He had blue, spikey hair. He stood about six foot seven. There was evidence of mako in his eyes.

"You heard," said the Continental Governor.

"I did," replied Karnak. "And you let her go?"

"If I kept her here she'd get suspicious," the Continental Governor replied as she stood up and poured herself a glass of wine.

"She can't find out her father is still alive," Karnak protested.

"It seems to me she already has, Victor," the Continental Governor as she pour a glass of wine for Karnak.

"She can't find him then," Karnak insisted. "You know what she'll discover right along with him. We'll lose millions."

"I won't let that happen," she assured him. "This is an important investment of ours. Nothing will get in its way as long as I'm in power."

"I'll take care of her," Karnak offered. "Leave her to me."

"No," the Continental Governor dismissed. "She'll give up. I'm sure of it."

THE STUFF THAT MIGHT HAVE GONE UNNOTICED...

Premonitions II begins five hours after the original Premonitions ends.

The places worse than jail that Tifa has slept in include, but are not limited to: Mount Nibel, the Shinra Building's holding cell, the Forgotten Capital, the snowy fields north of Icicle Inn, the Junon holding cell, and the Mideel Clinic.



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