Premonitions II-A: The Long Week of Hell

BY : Hippo_and_Friends_with_Benefits
Category: Final Fantasy VII > General
Dragon prints: 1604
Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy VII or any characters therin. I am making no money off of this work.

Chapter 27: Departures

February 2, 0008

9:15 p.m.

Tifa, still in her wedding gown, stood in her parlor. It was all quiet, in sharp contrast to the celebrations outside. She looked out the window, and was reminded that night had indeed fallen. She had taken her vows. She had cut the cake. She had tossed the bouquet. She had had her first dance. All that was left to do at this point was to begin her honeymoon with Cloud.

She took a long look at the wedding band that was now on her finger. She and Cloud were married. There was nothing that could put a stop to that now. Now, she would spend the rest of her life with him. She was grateful to whatever higher power was out there; it was a second chance virtually nobody else would ever get.

She then heard the patio door open and close, and Cissnei appeared moments later.

Smiling, she immediately went up to Tifa and hugged her.

"I don't know how to thank you!" Cissnei exclaimed.

"Don't mention it," Tifa assured her. "It meant everything since I read the journal."

"You really had this planned all day?" Cissnei asked.

"All day," Tifa replied. "Trust me, it would break my heart if you and my cousin didn't end up together."

Cissnei laughed and hugged Tifa again. She then grabbed her cell phone, which she had left on the counter when she had changed into her wedding dress.

"Bride selfie?" she requested.

"Of course!" Tifa replied.

They huddled and took the selfie as they heard the patio door open a third time.

A moment later, the maid of honor appeared in front of them.

"Hey, girls!" Elena greeted.

"Hey!" Cissnei replied.

"So the limo's on its way," Elena informed Tifa. "It'll stop in front of the house and take you to the dock. From there, the ferry will take you to the private island. You'll be there around elevenish."

"Wait, hold on," Tifa suddenly said as she ran up the stairs.

"What's going on?" asked Cissnei.

Elena simply shrugged.

A minute later, Tifa returned as quickly as she went.

"What was that all about?" Elena asked.

"I almost forgot," Tifa replied.

In her left hand were the blue bikini bottoms that read "Lockheart" on them. In her right hand was a multi-purpose lighter.

"You're burning your bikini bottoms?!" Cissnei exclaimed.

"It's not my last name anymore," Tifa replied. "Besides..."

"You didn't tell Cissnei, did you?" Elena asked.

"Tell me what?" Cissnei naturally inquired.

"I'm surprising Cloud in the hot tub tonight," Tifa informed her. "Wearing just my bikini top."

"Oooh!" exclaimed Cissnei. "That's sexy!"

"He won't notice when he first sees me in the hot tub," Tifa continued. "He'll gradually realize it as he walks around."

"That's very sexy!" Cissnei observed.

"He'll see her naked lower half from the side first," Elena continued. "Then he'll come all the way around and see her butt."

"That's extremely sexy!" said Cissnei.

"I also got her one of those do-it-yourself bikini wax kits so her lady parts will look sexy," Elena continued.

"Oh, I use those all the time," Cissnei admitted. "I even used one this morning when I cleaned up. They do make your lady parts look sexy."

"But in regards to the bikini bottoms," Elena said, "I think it's best that I burn them."

Tifa gave somewhat of a disappointed look; she had wanted to do that herself.

"I know you want to burn it yourself," Elena continued, "but we can't forget that your wedding dresses are, in fact, flammable."

"Ohhh," Tifa and Cissnei realized in unison as the former handed Elena the bottoms and the lighter.

"Fire is sexy," Elena assured them. "But a burning bride..."

"...is not sexy!" the two brides finished in unison.

Elena took the lighter to the bottoms, causing them to burn to ashes in less than two seconds.

The three women gasped in surprise.

"I didn't think it would be that quick," Tifa admitted.

Elena then handed the brides a set of folded clothes, each containing a pair of blue skinny jeans and a white tank top that read "Mrs." on it.

"You're getaway outfits," she explained. "Each of you can pick a room and change. Tifa, the limo's going to be here any minute."

Both Tifa and Cissnei nodded as they each went to a room to change.

9:30 p.m.

The totality of the wedding guests were gathered in the town square as the limousine pulled up in front of the house. Moments later, Cloud (who had also dressed down) and Tifa appeared at the front door, greeted by thunderous applause once again. The crowd cleared the way as Tseng and Elena led them to the limousine, opened the doors, and let them in, before climbing in themselves. The vehicle then drove off and out the south end of town, as all of the guests waved them farewell.

A few minutes later, the other bride and groom emerged from the house. Cissnei was in her getaway outfit, and Tobin, like Cloud, had dressed down. This time, a valet pulled Cissnei's own vehicle up to the house.

"Alicia?" he called.

"That's me!" Cissnei laughed.

The guests applauded again before Cissnei climbed into the driver's seat and Tobin into the passenger's. Moments later, Cissnei drove out the south entrance as well, again with the guests waving farewell.

"They're cant be a happier ending to this, can there?" Yuffie asked.

"Doubt it," Zack replied. "I certainly didn't see it coming for Cissnei and Tobin. I really thought they were just friends."

"That's the funny thing," she said. "It's hard to tell who likes you."

Zack nodded.

Well, the wedding's over, he thought. I suppose this is time to make my escape.

"So Yuffie," he began. "I had a really good time with you today."

She then gave him a look, taking the cue of the past tense he used.

"Wait a minute!" she exclaimed. "It's not over yet!"

"Not over yet?" Zack asked. "Cloud and Tifa are gone. So are Tobin and Cissnei. The wedding's over."

Yuffie sighed.

"Aren't you going to walk your date back to Rocket Town?" she asked. "Remember, you're mine until midnight. That's two and a half hours away."

He remembered that agreement; he needed to honor it. They had been on the date for seven and a half hours. Two and a half more wouldn't hurt anything.

"Yeah, okay," he replied.

He was in no position to argue, and the fact that he had seen it coming made it easier for him to accept.

Gradually, he did realize that they would have to pass the Nibel Reactor, where all hell had first broken loose.

Yeah, okay.

9:35 p.m.

One more surprise came for the night as a helicopter suddenly landed in the town square, attracting the attention of all of the remaining guests.

Cid immediately began to chuckle.

"They're too fucking late!" he pointed out. "Cloud and Tifa are gone!"

"That's not for Cloud and Tifa," Shera dismissed. "It's for us."

Cid immediately stopped laughing, and looked at Shera.

"Us?!" he exclaimed.

"That's right!" she replied. "I told you I had a surprise for you."

"A helicopter?" he asked.

Shera shook her head.

"Where we're going!" she corrected as she quickly made her way to the chopper.

Cid continued to stand in place, still in disbelief.

What is she planning? he thought.

"Well," began Shera as she started to board the helicopter, "don't tell me I have to do this without you!"

"No way!" Cid exclaimed as he practically ran to join her.

9:40 p.m.

The limousine, having driven straight from Nibelheim, stopped at the docks south of town.

Cloud and Tifa stepped out first, followed by Tseng and Elena. The gentle, cool breeze of the sea greeted them all.

Before the four of them sat a large, two story ferry.

"This will take you to the private island," Elena explained. "And it will pick you up in a week. In the meantime, it's yours to enjoy."

"Wow," Tifa replied. "This is incredible!"

She was truly amazed at what lay in store for her and Cloud.

"And don't worry," Elena continued. "The island's a no-fly zone. You'll get all the privacy you need."

"Perfect," said Cloud.

"Oh," added Tseng, "whatever you do, don't lose track of the days."

"No worries," Cloud assured them.

"He means it," Elena insisted. "The last thing you want is for the ferry to pull in while you're naked on the beach."

"I'll keep that in mind," Cloud said.

Cloud then shook hands with Tseng and hugged Elena good-bye. He then took their only piece of luggage (a bag that contained sunscreen, soap, and shampoo) and carried it onto the ferry.

Tseng then hugged Tifa good-bye and returned to limousine.

Tifa remained alone with Elena. She was truly amazed at how wonderful a friend she had become in less than a week. She could barely remember that they were once enemies, and felt truly blessed to have her in her life.

"Elena," she began, "thanks for everything. You really made the wedding special."

"Happy to do it all," Elena replied with a smile.

Before either woman could say anything else, Tifa hugged her friend tightly.

"I'll be here when you get back," Elena promised. "Right now, go enjoy your honeymoon!"

"Will do!" Tifa replied with a smile.

She then turned, and joined her husband on the ferry.

9:45 p.m.

Cissnei drove down the road that led to Xing. She had difficulty doing so; she kept glancing at her left hand, overjoyed to see a wedding band on her ring finger. She was also having trouble driving because she kept glancing down at her chest, happy to see the "Mrs." on her tank top.

Mrs.

That's right, she happily thought to herself. I'm a Mrs. I really did not see that coming ever in my life, let alone this morning!

She turned to Tobin, and threw him a big smile.

Tobin smiled back, but not as strongly as Cissnei.

He's still taking it in, she thought. If I knew we were getting married today, I would have booked a honeymoon. Or at least a hotel for the night!

She smiled at Tobin again.

This time, however, he did not smile.

And the smile faded from Cissnei's face as well.

Something's wrong, she realized. He's not saying anything, or even smiling. Okay, I heard the first rule of marriage is communication. Let's see how well we do.

"You're quiet," she observed aloud.

"I'm fine," Tobin responded quietly, without making eye contact.

In response, Cissnei immediately pulled the vehicle over. That did it.

She turned to Tobin, and looked him in the eyes with concern.

"You're not fine," she began. "I can tell. Tobin, please tell me what's on your mind."

Tobin took a deep breath.

"Did I...push you into this?" he began.

So that's what's on his mind, she realized. Technically, he did, but in the best way possible.

"Tobin," she replied. "I won't lie. I woke up this morning expecting to come home from the wedding just as friends. And yes, I was caught by surprise. But, Tobin, if I didn't want to get married, I wouldn't have said yes."

Tobin smiled a little more; he seemed relieved.

"I didn't say yes to please everyone," Cissnei continued. "I didn't say yes to please anyone. I said yes because I love you. All anyone pressured me into was realizing the truth about how I felt. And now I fully know why I said we had to get married three weeks ago. It was because I couldn't bear to have a life without you. I just wasn't trained to realize what love is. But now I know better."

With that, Cissnei gently placed her hand on Tobin's cheek, leaned in, and kissed him. She then pulled back, and took his right hand in both of hers.

"I'm not going to wake up tomorrow regretting this or thinking this was crazy," she insisted. "I've regretted a lot of things in my life. I've regretted never knowing my parents. I've regretted staying a Turk for longer than I should have. But I'll never regret tonight. It was the best decision I ever made."

She leaned in and kissed him again; the feeling of his lips against hers was a wonderful sensation that had been long overdue.

"Tobin," Cissnei continued, "I truly love you. To the moon and back. The only other thing I'll ever regret is not realizing that earlier. And I don't know how I've gotten so lucky to have fallen in love with someone like you. But, Tobin, I meant everything I said at the altar. And I'm looking forward to spending the rest of my life with you."

The two newlyweds kissed once more before the bride resumed driving. Five minutes later, they were parked in Xing.

"Ready?" Cissnei asked.

"Ready," Tobin replied.

She kissed him once more before they got out of the car.

They then went to the bar, holding hands along the way.

9:50 p.m.

Zack and Yuffie continued their way through the winding paths of Mount Nibel. It was a quiet walk, as no Shinra troops nor any menacing creatures would now pursue them. There were no lights along the paths; the two wedding guests were using their cell phones to find their way across the mountain.

As the location evoked undesired memories for Zack, it was Yuffie who was the most talkative.

"People from this area believe your soul goes through here when you die," Yuffie began.

"Wow," Zack replied, pretending to be interested. "I actually died. My friend Angeal pulled me off the ground and I actually saw Heaven. And then, the lucky bride shocked me back to life."

"Tifa?" she asked.

"Cissnei," he corrected. "I still can't believe she also got married tonight."

"I know," she said.

The path continued. Zack was eager to arrive on the other end of the mountain. He would drop his date off and then...

Shit.

He realized that he would have to come back through the mountain on the way back.

"The funny thing is," continued Yuffie, "until the Lifestream burst out of the ground, I never really believed in life after death. It's weird how whole experiences can change your outlook on everything."

Now she's getting philosophical? he thought to himself. She seems a little young for that, but, hell, maybe it'll make her stop stealing.

A few moments later, Zack stopped in his tracks, and beheld something he had hoped to never see again.

It was the Nibel Reactor.

"Where it all started to go wrong," Zack began.

"What happened?" Yuffie asked.

"Genesis was hiding in there," Zack replied. "He told Sephiroth about his origins. So then Sephiroth confined himself into the Shinra Mansion before burning the town down. I ended up in a tube for four years because of it all." He paused. "That's why I didn't recognize you at first."

Yuffie was silent.

It did destroy his life, she realized. He just wanted to go home to Midgar. He was totally screwed over. And yet...maybe I can make him feel better.

"If you'll come with me," she began, "there's something real neat inside that reactor."

"No thanks," he dismissed.

"It's worth it," she said. "Trust me."

9:55 p.m.

Tobin sat in his seat as Cissnei sang another karaoke song from the old world. He was happy to hear it; it described the two of them perfectly.

He realized how much she truly loved him. He almost wanted to laugh at the fact that neither of them had realized that until literally minutes before that had gotten married. This would be a story to tell for sure. It would be the perfect ending to the journal when he published it.

After the song was finished, Cissnei sat down next to him at the table.

"You know," she began, somewhat embarrassed, "we're over an hour away from home."

She was right; they had to drive all the way back to Cosmo Canyon.

"Should we go?" Tobin asked.

"I think so," Cissnei replied sadly. "I didn't realize the wedding would run this late. I have never been to one."

"That's okay," he said. "We can come back tomorrow if you want."

In response, she placed her hand on his.

"I'd rather just be with you," she replied.

"I like that better," he agreed.

10:00 p.m

"So this is Sephiroth?" Zack asked as he gazed at the petrified figure in the basement of the Nibel Reactor.

"This is Sephiroth," Yuffie replied.

"What happened?" he asked.

"Tifa dropped a cracked break Materia. She turned Sephiroth, herself, and the other three to stone in a flash."

"Herself?!" Zack exclaimed.

"Cloud broke down and cried like she was gone forever," Yuffie continued. "But I brought her back with a soft."

Zack felt a little better, knowing that Sephiroth had some comeuppance. But...

"Why didn't you just kill him?" he asked.

"Supposedly, in the future, he manipulates the Lifestream from inside," Yuffie answered. "So we decided he's more dangerous dead than alive."

"And who are those other three?" he inquired, noticing the remaining three statues.

"Kadaj, Loz, and Yazoo," she replied. "They're his children. He got three unsuspecting women pregnant. All died giving birth."

Zack stood appalled. He realized he had missed a lot.

"Wow," he said. "All this because Genesis ran his mouth."

"Hey," Yuffie began, "whatever happened to that guy, anyway?"

"Dunno," Zack replied. "I honestly just left him there. Nobody's heard from him since."

Yuffie shook her head.

Zack then returned his attention to the petrified Sephiroth.

"What's going to happen to him?" he asked.

"Down here he stays," she replied.

"But what if someone used a soft on him?"

"I'd rather not think about it," Yuffie answered. "He's already summoned Meteor. God only knows what else he's capable of."

Zack was silent.

"Sorry," Yuffie continued. "You want to get out of here, don't you?"

He took one last look at the petrified Sephiroth.

"I would prefer that," he admitted.

10:15 p.m.

The helicopter landed in Sector Eight before Cid and Shera stepped out.

"So that's the surprise?" Cid asked. "Midgar?"

"No, silly," Shera replied. "It's in Midgar!"

With that, she took his hand and began leading him through the streets with direction. Midnight and her eighteenth birthday were a mere hour and forty-five minutes away. She wondered what they would do with each minute leading up to it.

Cid, meanwhile, was dumbfounded. He was following her blindly through the empty streets, wondering where she was taking him. Nobody had ever surprised him in his life, at least not in a pleasant way, so he had mixed feelings about the whole situation.

After a few minutes, they crossed into Sector One. A few blocks after that, Cid beheld what had been waiting for him.

It was his favorite hotspot in Midgar.

It was Coveter's Row, lined with shops, gaming kiosks, casinos, and clubs. "Wall Market for the middle class," as it was often referred to.

"Wow!" Cid exclaimed in awe. "This is the surprise?!"

"Yes," Shera replied as she pointed her finger. "And this!"

Cid soon realized that she was pointing at the Royal Roice, the finest hotel in Midgar.

"I got us a room for tonight!" she said happily.

He stared in disbelief.

"I'll prove it!" she exclaimed as she grabbed his hand again and led him into the hotel.

She checked in and took him up to their third floor room.

When they go there, Cid noticed a pair of khakis, a golf shirt, and a sport jacket hanging on the closet. He then looked at Shera.

"Well," she said, "you don't want to be going around in a tux down there, do you?"

Cid shook his head.

"I, for one, need to get out of this bridesmaid gown," Shera continued as she went into the bathroom and closed the door behind her.

For once, she had pleasantly surprised him.

Excited about seeing Coveter's Row for the first time in years, Cid quickly changed into the clothes she had left for him.

A few minutes later, Shera emerged from the bathroom. She was wearing a yellow baby tee and a green wrap-around mini-skirt, with a pair of sneakers. She looked cute and sexy at the same time.

Cid was amazed; it was a side of Shera he had never seen before, as he was used to her in her khakis and lab coat.

"So," Shera began as she took his hand again. "Ready to hit the town?"

"You bet your ass!" he replied enthusiastically.

10:30 p.m.

Cloud and Tifa ascended the stairs to the top deck of the ferry as the Western Continent disappeared from view. They were out in the ocean now, between the Continent and the private island.

Tifa was silent for a moment; they were only a half an hour away from their destination. She began to feel somewhat nervous; they would be seeing each other naked for the very first time. She certainly wanted it, but, as it was a new experience for her, she could not help but feel somewhat apprehensive about it.

She realized that the least she could do is talk to her husband as the ferry steamed slowly towards the island.

"So I never did ask," Tifa began, "what did you think of my cowgirl outfit five years ago."

Cloud looked at his wife and smiled.

"I thought it was pretty hot," he replied. "It was the most I had seen of you."

Tifa smiled.

"Until later tonight," she reminded him. "You'll be seeing a lot more of me than in my cowgirl outfit."

"Where did you get it?" Cloud asked.

"Tobin wrote in his journal that he thought I either got it from a Halloween store or an adult shop." She paused. "It was an adult shop."

Cloud's eyes widened in surprise.

"How did you get past the age restriction?" he asked.

"I used my mom's ID," Tifa laughed. "We did look alike, didn't we?"

Before Cloud could respond, both he and Tifa heard the sound of splashing.

Tifa went to the ledge and peered over, gasping as she did so.

"Look, Cloud, dolphins!" she exclaimed.

Cloud joined his wife at the ledge, watching the creatures hop out of the water. He had never seen them in the wild before, and he realized that, upon viewing them, they were truly majestic creatures.

And then, without warning, or perhaps semi-consciously, Cloud felt himself raising his hand to the same level of Tifa's neck, gently stroking the nape with his fingertips. He could feel goosebumps almost immediately.

"Lie down," Tifa suddenly whispered.

Cloud was somewhat confused.

"On the deck?" he asked.

She nodded. "On your back."

Cloud did as he was commanded.

A moment later, Tifa lowered herself down to his level, straddled herself at his waist, bent down, and kissed him passionately.

"I love you," she whispered before kissing him harder.

A spark of passion ignited in the young newlyweds as they continued to kiss deeply, their tongues pressing hard against each other. Tifa ran her hands up and down the sides of his chest, as Cloud ran his hands over her back.

And then, Tifa stopped the kissing. Still straddling her husband, she sat up straight, and looked him in the eyes.

Cloud returned the look, expecting her to say something.

Instead, Tifa reached back, gripped her tank top, pulled it over her head, and tossed it aside, revealing her blue bikini top.

"For the jacuzzi tonight," she said with a smile before bending down and pressing her lips against his once more.

Cloud ran his hands over Tifa's mostly bare back. He ran them over her shoulders. He ran them over her sides.

Tifa could not describe how she was feeling at the moment; she was feeling many things at once. She felt sexy. She felt passionate. But, most importantly, with her shirt off and in her bikini top, she felt vulnerable.

Cloud's kissing suddenly became more passionate. He moved from her mouth to her neck. He then began to slowly inch his way to her still-covered breasts, expecting her to object at some point. But she did not.

And then, the ferry jerked to a stop.

The kissing and caressing ceased.

Tifa slowly sat up, and smiled at Cloud.

"I think we're here," she laughed.

She quickly slipped her tank top back on, stood up, and helped Cloud to his feet.

"And we were just getting warmed up," he laughed.

"A lot more will come off on the island," she said with a smile. "Trust me."

They then descended to the lower deck.

10:45 p.m.

Zack and Yuffie arrived in Rocket Town as most of the lights began to switch off for the night.

Zack sighed in relief; he was glad to be away from that mountain. Still, he had to deal with the fact that he had to cross through there again on the way back. It was not something he had wanted to do.

Maybe after I drop Yuffie off, I'll get a room at the hotel myself, he thought. Then I can head back in the morning.

Yuffie led Zack into the hotel and to her room. She unlocked the door and led him inside, clicking on the lights as she did so.

Zack checked his cell phone, and noticed that the hour was late.

She's going to crash, he thought. She'll probably thank me for the date, hug me good-bye, and then, I'll be on my way. I'll then book my own room.

"So, Yuffie," Zack began, "I'll be heading home now."

Yuffie immediately turned around and put her hands on her hips.

"Where do you think you're going?" she demanded. "You're still my date for another hour and fifteen!" She then picked up a brown paper bag that had been so conveniently left by the door. "I'm going to change in the bathroom. You get changed out here."

"Changed for what?" Zack asked in confusion.

"Swimming!" Yuffie replied enthusiastically as she reached into the bag and pulled out a pair of black trunks, tossing them to Zack.

"Swimming?" he asked.

Yuffie nodded as she went into the bathroom. "This hotel has a pool," she explained before closing the door behind her.

"This has been an interesting day," he said to himself.

"Hurry up and change!" Yuffie called from the bathroom. "Before I come out and see you naked, and then it would be really awkward!"

10:55 p.m.

The ferry disappeared over the horizon as Cloud and Tifa stood alone on the dock of the private island.

Tifa looked to both her left and to her right; there was a beautiful beach on each side. Looking straight again, she could see the starlight night sky, complete with a full moon that reflected beautifully on the ocean water. She then turned around, and beheld the cabin.

This was it.

This was their wedding night.

"Well," she began, eyeing the cabin, "shall we?"

"We shall," Cloud replied with a smile.

The newlyweds took each other's hands and slowly walked to the other end of the dock, where the wood flooring became a path.

A few yards into the path, there was a rope hammock tied to two trees.

"Oh, Cloud!" Tifa exclaimed. "Can we sleep in it a couple nights while we're here?"

"Absolutely," Cloud agreed.

A few yards further, and they were under the cabin. That building was elevated a story from the ground. A sole revolving, wooden staircase provided the means of entry.

"I guess this is the way in!" Tifa said, smiling at Cloud.

"I know you don't like to be picked up," he said, "but I suppose I can carry you up."

Tifa thought for a moment.

"Actually," she finally replied, "I'd like to lead you up. If that's okay."

"It's more than okay," Cloud approved.

Smiling, Tifa took his hand and led him up the stairs.

Cloud did not mind the least that he had married a strong and independent woman. He realized it really was her victory; she had safely rescued her father, and married the man she had always wanted to. She had planned everything herself; she had every right to lead him on. Plus, it was giving him a decent view of her backside, which looked incredible in the jeans she was wearing. He then considered the possibility that she wanted to tease him a bit.

Soon, the newlyweds reached the top of the stairs. They found themselves in a sitting area, with a sofa, loveseat, and a television. There was no door sealing the cabin; the island provided all the security and privacy they needed.

Tifa scanned their surroundings. To the right, behind the sofa and the loveseat, was the bathroom. Turning further to the right, Tifa could see the bedroom, complete with a king-sized bed. And then, turning in the opposite direction, Tifa could see another room.

It was the room with the hot tub.

"Well," said Tifa with a smile, "here we are."



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