Sephiroth And Zack

By Clone of Sephiroth

"I think you're losing your edge old man!" Zack quipped, easily deflecting Sephiroth's deadly Masamune blade with his own mighty sword. An annoyingly arrogant smile plastered on his face.

Sephiroth and Zack, one a living legend, the other a new recruit prodigy, were perhaps the two most talented members of Shinra Inc.'s elite military task force, SOLDIER... They were in the middle of yet another intense sparring session, grappling like two rival wolves. The lights had been turned out by some inconsiderate fighter on their way out, but Sephiroth and Zack fought on in the darkness... Committed warriors they were.

Sephiroth advanced on the younger man, resembling a hungry panther stalking its prey in his flowing black garb, "Pretty full of yourself aren't you," he growled, "you shouldn't be."

Sephiroth raised his sword high, letting it absorb the stealth of the shadows and brought it down upon his opponent. Zack expertly parried the blow. But occupied with blocking the sword, he neglected his other defenses and left himself vulnerable, getting hit with a swift kick to the stomach.

The impact made him flinch and sent him reeling back. He clutched at his stomach with his free hand, trying desperately to massage away the stinging pain.

"Nice," he coughed, "I think my dinner's about to come back on me."

Sephiroth emerged from the blackness, his brilliant green eyes glowing brightly, "Ignore the pain..."

The older man lunged at Zack again, his long sword arcing gracefully, pointed at Zack's chest. Zack forgot about the remaining pain in his abdomen and dived for safety! The steel blade crashed into the floor behind him with a loud clang that echoed throughout the enclosed room... He spun around as fast as he could to counter attack, but the sword, and Sephiroth were gone... Huffing and puffing from the adrenaline of the moment before, he scanned the shadows for any sign of his opponent...

For a sparring match, Sephiroth certainly was going all out! Or was he hardly even trying, and he was just THAT powerful?!

Zack gripped his sword with white knuckles, and waited for any hint of the other man's presence, "I know where you are Sephiroth! Don't try sneaking up on me! It won't work... Okay?"

The deceptively frail looking thin blade of the Masamune glided silently through the shadows and toward Zack from behind. His warrior senses flaring, Zack rolled out of the way and jumped to his feet, just in time to spot the deathly weapon disappear into the darkness once more...

Enough of this, Zack thought, he was going to eliminate Sephiroth's stealth by getting the lights back on... Then he would be able to wail on him! But, where was that light switch again?

Before he could begin his search for the switch, his eyes flew wide in alarm... The Masamune came out of the darkess, like a mute harbinger of fate, and sailed toward him. He instinctively threw himself at the floor to escape, but the razor edged weapon slid across his shoulder and flew out of sight again...

He grimaced as a thin strand of deep crimson erupted on his shoulder... Then he realized that the sword that had just injured him, was without a handler! Sephiroth must be... He didn't have time to finish his thought as a strong kick violently connected with his lower back and sent him to his knees in agony. Within a few seconds, another hard kick slammed into his mid-section, renewing the pain there...

Yet another kick came at him, this time aimed at his head... Even though he was struggling to catch his breath, and it felt like his endurace had been erased, Zack managed to get his arm up, grabbing Sephiroth's foot firmly in his hand. He flung it up toward the ceiling with all of his might, sending Sephiroth flying into the air... He crashed back to the unforgiving steel floor with a bone-jarring thud.

Zack slowly rose to his feet, lingering pain making his movements sluggish compared to his normal quickness, and sprinted to where he believed the light switch to be. He knew Sephiroth would be right at his heels, so he lunged for the wall and urgently felt around for the switch. There it was! With a small grunt, he triumphantly pushed the button.

White, florescent beams of light flooded the area and made him squint... It was a simple rectangular room, with just one exit and nothing decorating it, save for a few navy blue gym mats.

He spotted Sephiroth at the opposite wall retreiving his sword, "Well, THAT was fun," Zack groaned, picking up his own blade.

Sephiroth ignored the comment and calmly walked toward him, sword-in-hand... Realizing the session was over, Zack let out a relieved sigh and took a stance at his mentor's side. With a clenched jaw, he lightly touched the slash on his shoulder.

"I guess we're done now, right? Man am I glad! You were really --"

The air was suddenly split in two as Sephiroth brought the Masamune down with unbelievable speed. Zack, so startled by the quickness of the attack, was cut again, the razor sharp blade catching his fore-arm this time, spilling a lengthy trail of dark scarlet down and over his knuckles...

Zack jerked his arm away and shouted, "Sephiroth! What the hell was that for?!"

"I'm teaching you to remain alert at all times," Sephiroth swung his sword again, Zack threw himself to the floor just quickly enough and the threat went sailing over his head, "which is a type of training you obviously need."

Zack knew Sephiroth was just trying to make another point, but he was fed up, and took his fighting stance. The shining Masamune sliced toward him again, but this time Zack was ready. He skillfully side-stepped it and the screeching blade went whirring past, just inches away.

Taking advantage of Sephiroth's blatant overswing, Zack launched a lightning quick counter, striking his mighty opponent solidly on the hip with the flat portion of his hefty broadsword.

Sephiroth was staggered for just a heartbeat, but that's all Zack needed. He shifted his weapon to one hand and used the other to shove his rival completely off balance.

The silver haired legend fell right onto his rear, with a loud thud. Zack instantly returned to his fighting stance and gripped his weapon nervously in both fists, waiting for the counter that was sure to come.

But it didn't... Sephiroth stayed down, a tight smile creasing his lips. Zack raised an eyebrow, it had to be some sort of trick... But then, a shocking thing happened, the great Sephiroth burst out laughing... It was a cold, raspy laugh, but a laugh nonetheless.

Zack was utterly stunned, "You okay Sephy?"

Sephiroth ceased his laughing and peered up at his protege, "I'm fine... That was a decent move..."

"Yeah well," Zack sheathed his sword and respectfully offered his hand to his mentor, "I've been taking lessons from the best."

Sephiroth ignored the hand and stood up unaided. He sheathed his own blade and gazed around the empty room, a sudden weariness invading his face, "That's enough for today... We must get some rest in preparation for our depature tomorrow..."

Not waiting for Zack's opinion on things, Sephiroth started toward the exit. Zack just stood there and stared after him, still somewhat puzzled.

Sephiroth suddenly spun around, a cruel glare on his face that cut into Zack, far deeper then any sword could have, "And if you EVER call me Sephy again, the sparring is over."

He was dead serious...

Zack urgently nodded his head in acknowledgement... Sephiroth flashed him a final eerie look and strode out the door.

Zack caught his wits and called after his teacher, "Sephy! Oh, geez! I mean, Sephiroth! Oh crap! Oh geez! Um... Sorry! Wait up!"

Zack switched off the lights and dashed from the room, leaving the place in a serene silence...

The weary duo was off for some much needed rest, and then it was on to their next mission. A small errand to some obscure place called... Nibelheim.

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