Redemption Chapter 4

By Janet Monstwillo

Patrick liked the dark. He always had; as a child, he loved to lurk in the shadows of the sunset. Now, he loved to walk in the untamed forest around the village and meet whatever mutants came to attack him. The number of monsters in the world were dwindling, but there were a few left over, who had become even more grotesque when exposed to the aftermath of the Midgar explosion.

Perhaps his bravery came from the steadfast gleam in his eye, similar to a cat's. However, his luminescence lasted even in the dead of night. Patrick saw remarkably well, but that was the only unusual strength that he had made known to his family. Raieyana was still uncertain just what her son was capable of, and the thought itself was quite unsettling. The question always remained, whether Patrick embraced the darkness because he could tame it or because he was part of it.

Whatever the reasoning behind it, Patrick felt at home in a dark room. He slipped into his bedroom and didn't bother with the lamp. The only reason he even had a lamp was at Raieyana's insistance. He slid off his T-shirt and stepped out of his pants, leaving only a pair of boxers. Hearing a noise outside, he stepped to the window. Suddenly, he was aware of a bit of startled movement in his bed.

"Wh--who's there?" whispered a sweet, but frightened, voice.

"It's just me, Zuri," he said softly. "What are you doing in my room?"

"Your room?"

"Hang on, I'll turn on the lamp." Patrick walked across the room and turned on the oil lamp.

Azura looked around and noticed the posters of various battle techiniques, along with weapon racks. "I don't get it. Mom and Daddy told me to sleep here."

"Didn't you notice before you went to sleep?"

"I didn't turn on the lamp." She looked embarrassed. "I don't know how to work oil lamps, only electric."

He walked back over to her and sat down next to her. "Well, at least that's cleared up. Your parents probably just mixed up which room was the guest room." Inching closer to her, he placed an arm around her shoulders and mustered up the most encouraging smile he could ever make. He realized that his hand was on a bare shoulder and couldn't help but glance to see what Azura was wearing.

(A strappy silk nightgown.) Patrick could tell by the fading in the flower print that it was kind of old. (Also, it's a little obvious to me that she got this thing before she got a figure. I hope she has a robe to wear over this thing if she ever intends to leave her room.)

Azura was a little too innocent and oblivious to notice she was sitting in a bed with someone, and that they both were half-naked. "This is nice," she said cheerfully.

"What is?" Patrick was cautious.

"Well, we're sitting here and have time to ourselves, and no one would interrupt us until morning. We could talk and not have to bother with our parents wanting us to stay on the porch."

"Bother with who wanting us to stay on the porch? I thought we were there because you liked the swing."

"Oh." Azura looked down. "I love the swing, but my dad told me to stay on the porch."

"You would be safe with me, even if I took you to Midgar."

"Really, Pat?" Her eyes were wide with admiration.

"Of course." He meant to ask her why her father wanted her to remain within five feet of the house, but was lured by the sparkle in Azura's eye...into another. "Has anyone ever kissed you, Zuri?"

"Kissed me?" She looked at him like he had suggested she go do the very thing to a chocobo. She shook her head vehemently. "No one would ever dare to do such a thing. Not to the daughter of the Lady of the Pagoda. Not to the daughter of a guy who becomes a Chaos monster when provoked."

Patrick looked deep into her eyes. "Would you like someone to, though?"

"Of course. Just because my parents aren't normal doesn't mean that I'm not."

He laughed. "Well guess what, Zuri?"

"What?" she asked, actually wondering what he was going to say next.

"Even though you're the daughter of the Lady of the Pagoda and the Chaos Monster, I dare," he said, leaning in closer. "Because I'm the son of a woman who returned from the dead and the man who founded the most important company on the Planet."

Two pairs of lips touched sweetly. Azura looked at him with wide eyes. "Why do you dare?"

"Because I have to do that before I do this," Patrick said mischieviously. The next meeting of lips did not end quite as quickly as the first.

* * * * * * * * * * *

"Perhaps it's time we told him the truth."

"Are you crazy, Reeve?" asked Raieyana.

"No. I've been thinking about it for a long time. You know how having Jenova and Mako inside you gives you a connection to other people like that. I can't connect with Patrick."

"You connect to our children just fine!"

"Ray, that's because they are mine, too!" He sighed. "Look. I'm just tired of dealing with him day in and day out. He has no respect for me. He must sense somehow that I have no right to tell him what to do."

"He was just fine today. Besides, you have every right. You provided for him. You put your life on the line for him."

"I can tell him that, but he'll just roll his eyes like he always does when we tell him about the past."

"You think he's unstable and out of control."

Reeve tried to take her into his arms, but Raieyana wouldn't even meet his eye. "I just don't know if he will be able to stay under this roof after he gets much older."

"So your answer to my unstable son is to tell him that all he knows about his life is a lie?"

"Ray, don't make it sound like that--"

"It's what we'd be doing. And the way things run in my family, the truth doesn't always yield the best results."

"If I had it my way, he'd have known the truth all along!" His eyes flashed in anger. "Raieyana. We can't keep it from him forever. Besides, he won't have to read the truth at least."

"What if he then goes to find Cloud?"

"I haven't seen the man in fourteen years. If he's made himself that scarce, I doubt Patrick will ever find him."

"Well, perhaps the day will come when I have to tell him. But let's wait."


She cuddled up close to him. "He's awful found of Azura, and with her here to train..."

"You think he's magically going to become tolerant or something?"

"He let me hug him tonight."

Reeve was quiet. "When was the last time before now?"

"The day before he killed off half the chocobo farm five years ago. Before that day, I swear, he was someone different from who he was now."

He lightly stroked her hair. "Kids grow up, Ray."

"I know. But not overnight." She kissed him softly. "So you agree, we wait?"

"I'll see if Zuri has an extended effect on him. Tomorrow I'll start looking for it. Right now, I'm going to sleep. Still angry?"

Raieyana shook her head and smiled, allowing Reeve's arms to finally wrap around her. Drawing her head to his chest, she snuggled close and allowed herself to drift away to the land of dreams.

* * * * * * * * * * *

("Hello, child."

What did you call me?

"Child. That's what you are, aren't you? Fourteen is a long way from adult."

That's where most make their mistake. I'm not like other fourteen-year-olds.

"Oh, I know that. That's why I speak to you. You're special. Not like the others."

I know that well enough. Being so close to the Mako explosion when I was an infant accelerated my growth.

"So your mother says."

You dare call Mother a liar? Come out of this cowardly unconsciousness and dare to meet me face to face. I will cut your venomous head from your body, then rip you limb from limb.

"I do not call her anything. I am not here to slander anyone, just show you the truth."

The truth about what?

"The truth about you, Patrick...")


Patrick peered through the white haze. (A hall of doors.) He knew he was dreaming and was angry over losing control of his mind. He had no choice but to go along. "Open each door," the voice had said.

He turned the handle of the first door. The top of it was painted white, but faded into a blood-red at the bottom. Opening the door, he stepped inside.

(This is a bedroom at Lia's house.) His eyes adjusted quickly to the dark, and he saw two figures on the bed. One on top of the other. (A blond-haired man and...Mother?) Raieyana screamed and the man slammed her head against the wall. Patrick was enraged. (Damn you.) He walked up to the man and looked into his eyes. Blue mako eyes. Looking at the age of his mother, Patrick tried to figure out who the man could be. (Could that be...Cloud Strife?)

Suddenly, the two figures faded, and the room was empty, save for Patrick. (What does this have to do with me?) He walked back through the doorway and found himself back in darkness with the voice.

"Several doors for several dreams,
Soon you learn what they all mean.
Through passing all these scenes in time,
All truth will be placed in your mind.
After all these things you shall behold,
The future will have been foretold...

The future will have been..."

("...foretold.") Patrick awakened with a jerk. Azura stirred next to him but settled back down to sleep. He looked down at her pretty face. (I know what it's like to be teased by a girl in that certain way. The way that brings you almost to the edge. But I would never, ever become possessed to do such a thing like that...that beast did to my mother.) Brushing a hand over her cheek, he leaned down to kiss her softly. (Because of two people. My most beautiful mother, and my only friend in the world.)

After some time, he finally relaxed, but sleep would not come again that night. Patrick didn't mind, for he just watched Azura, wondering if she had been told not to leave the house...just because she was with him.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Raieyana felt herself being called from sleep, but she was fighting every step of the way. (I'm tired) her mind mumbled to itself. Finally though, she was torn back into reality and happened to hear a knocking at the door before she had managed to do a nice toss or turn.

"Stupid salesmen," she muttered half-consciously as she pulled a robe over herself and proceeded to the front door. "I'll never figure out how they get vacuum cleaners up the rope ladders." She paused, thinking over what she had just mumbled. (This is salesmen.) Stifling a giggle, she opened the door.

"This is the residence of Reeve Jordan, I assume." The visitor was a tall man with a business-like voice.

"Uh, I guess," said Raieyana. Since he was quite a bit taller than her, the checking out was done from the feet upwards. (Suit...yeah...ironed...I hope this isn't about Alcor.) "What are you doing here at such a time...?" she asked as her eyes continued their achingly slow scrutiny. As she got to his face, he closed his eyes.

"Took me this long to get up the damn trail. Didn't muster up the balls to go over that gorge on the rope until about sunset."

"Most of us use the other trail." (Red hair, kinda unkempt.)

He opened his eyes wide. "There's another one?"

She looked up to meet them. "Yeah..." her voice trailed off in shock. Standing before her was a man in a blue suit with red hair and eyes. Blue-green mako eyes.


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