|By : Hippo_and_Friends_with_Benefits|
Category: Final Fantasy VII > General
Views: 915 -:- Recommendations : 0 -:- Currently Reading : 0
|Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy VII, Crisis Core, it any characters therin. I am not making any money here.|
Chapter 20: It's Ice!
January 1, 0002
She stood in the kitchen, pacing around the table. Every few seconds, she glanced nervously at her cell phone. No matter how many times she did it, nothing had changed.
"What's wrong, Aerie?" Gehrig asked.
"I can't reach Zack," Aerith replied nervously. "I keep texting him and he's not responding."
"Did you try calling him?" Gehrig suggested.
"His phone's going straight to voicemail," Aerith replied, "and when I text him, it says it's not received." She sighed. "I really hope he's not ghosting me."
"Why would he?"
"I told him," Aerith replied.
"What?" asked Gehrig.
"About me," Aerith clarified.
"He wouldn't wait that long to do it," Gehrig assured her. "Let me try Tobin," she said as she pulled out her cell. "He works at the Shinra Building. He'll know what's going on."
Gehrig called my number, but that went to voicemail too.
"Maybe it's the reception?" she suggested.
Aerith was somewhat relieved, it didn't seem personal.
"I was topless when I told him," she giggled. "And he still made eye-contact."
"I'm still sure he liked it," Gehrig said.
"I liked it," Aerith added. "It felt so...free."
"Ah, yes," sighed Gehrig. "I remember. That's one great thing you can do with a boyfriend. I spent four times over at Chuckie's house wearing just my pants and two times wearing just my shirt."
"Aerith Lee Gainsborough!" called Elmyra from upstairs. "Come here once."
"That doesn't sound good," Aerith sighed.
She duly climbed the stairs to find Elmyra standing in the doorway to her room. She was holding a hanger. Attached to it was a pink lacy top and a matching pair of panties.
"We need to talk about this," Elmyra said sternly.
Aerith's mouth dried. She was careful, very careful not to let her mom find out she was sexually active, but hiding something in a closet that Elmyra occasionally cleaned out would not prove a hundred percent effective.
"Mom..." Aerith began.
"I'll tell you right now," Elmyra continued, "these have to go."
Aerith was so embarrassed she wanted to cry. She wondered if her mom would ground her.
Elmyra then ripped the panties off the hook.
Aerith gave her a confused look.
"You don't want to block his entrance, do you?" Elmyra asked. "So lose the bottoms."
Aerith nearly gasped. Is my mom actually giving me sex advice? she thought.
"Wait a minute," she began. "You're not mad?"
"Why would I be?" Elmyra asked. "It's a regular part of dating. Did you think I was that naive?"
Aerith began to sweat in relief as she shook her head.
"And you're already on the pill to manage your period," Elmyra continued. "So I'm not worried about you making babies. Just don't tease him like that. It's not fair."
A few minutes later, Aerith returned downstairs, still embarrassed but relieved. She could not believe her mom was cool with her having sex with her boyfriend. I was told to wait until I was married.
"Well," she began, "my mom knows we're-"
She then stopped dead.
Gehrig was looking into her cell phone with a look of horror on her face.
"A helicopter went down on the Northern Continent," she whispered. "Zack was reported on it. And Tobin might have been with him."
Gehrig wasn't kidding. It was our pilot's fault, he was beyond exhausted and probably had the flu. He was the only fatality of the crash.
Zack didn't die, of course. He was flung from the helicopter and still didn't die.
"Well, that's a fine how-do-you-do!" he sighed as he helped himself up.
He then looked around, and saw no one else outside. All he saw was snow, and the mountains it covered. It was the Northern Continent for sure.
"Tseng!" he called. "Hey guys!"
Tseng didn't die either because he's, you know, Tseng.
He was behind Zack, along with two infantrymen. He quickly checked his phone, and got the results he expected.
"No signal out here," he announced.
"Well, at least we're in one piece," Zack said optimistically. "We'll be alright."
"Thankfully," Tseng said, "we have someone used to this terrain."
"Yeah, yeah," Zack sighed. "I'm a country boy."
"All right, then," Tseng announced. "We would've reached Modeoheim by now if we hadn't crashed. So we're going to need to make up for lost time."
"All right," Zack said. "Follow me, then!"
Zack led the way along the snowy path. He ended up fighting several giant, flightless birds. That's the thing about the Northern Continent; it's the most hostile place known to man. The creatures are bizarre. The weather is deadly. Worst of all, there's the eternal wind barrier. Anyone who touches that gets swept off their feet; the pressure would kill them instantly.
At one point, only one of the infantrymen was next to Zack.
"Yo!" Zack called. "Don't fall too far behind!" He then turned to the infantryman. "At least someone's keeping up!"
"Well, I'm a country boy, too," the infantryman replied.
"From where?" Zack asked.
"Nibelheim," the infantryman answered. "How about you?"
"Me?" asked Zack. "Gongaga."
The infantryman began cracking up.
"Hey, what's so funny about that?" Zack asked. "You know Gongaga?"
"No," the infantryman replied, "but it's such a backwater name."
"Ditto Nibelheim!" Zack retorted.
"Like you've been there!" said the infantryman.
"I haven't," replied Zack, "but there's a reactor there, right?"
The infantryman nodded.
"A mako reactor outside of Midgar usually means nothing else out there," Zack said.
Both Zack and the infantryman laughed in unison.
"Good news, Tseng!" called Zack as he turned toward the still-trailing Turk. "Me and-"
The infantryman removed his helmet. Zack swore he could've been his twin brother, only his hair was blond, and he was several inches shorter.
"Cloud," introduced the infantryman.
"Me and Cloud are both backwater experts," Zack announced. "Oh yeah!"
"Good," replied Tseng as he stopped for breath. "Carry on, then."
THE STUFF THAT MIGHT HAVE GONE UNNOTICED...
In the game, this is suggested to have immediately followed Zack meeting Aerith, but I decided to push it back for a while. I didn't want too many characters, and I basically wanted to write Durham out before reintroducing Cloud. Also, there's the issue of Aerith comforting the crying Zack. In real life, that would end a relationship pretty quickly if it was that early on.
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