A Moment of Happiness Part 1
By Shiroi Ryu
As the screen flashed its ugly message, Sephiroth was filled with a terrible rage. File not found?! No! his mind screamed. No! He banged the console in anger. File not found-he had no past! No past! This could not be! He felt them, stinging his eyes-tears. But, bitterly, he remembered Lena's words.
Tears are for the weak
So instead of crying, he seized his chair, and used it to smash the computer console.
The strong take matters into their own hands
He laughed bitterly. He'd certainly take matters into his own hands. Hojo would pay for this Sephiroth smiled. What a joy it would be, to see Hojo's body, spitted upon the Masamune. Maybe, he thought with malicious pleasure, I'll even do some experiments on him
Stepping over General Laurel's body, he returned to the quarantine tube. There, he bent to gather his coat and armor. I'm leaving here, he decided, and I'm going to hunt Hojo down. And when I find him He put on the coat and armor. He straightened, and
Felt a hand descend upon his shoulder. Faster than lightning, he whirled, bringing his sword into position.
"Agghh!" the tiny figure cried, throwing up its frail arms protectively. It was this startling, inoffensive action that made Sephiroth hesitate from plunging the Masamune into the slender body of the creature. Slowly, the arms lowered, and Sephiroth found a pair of large, glowing blue eyes staring up at him.
"Sephiroth ?" it asked cautiously, voice barely a whisper. The voice was female, and very delicate. For once, Sephiroth did not feel the urge to kill. Perhaps it was the woman's apparent defenselessness. After all, it was no fun to bathe in the blood of something that wouldn't fight back No, he was more curious as to what a wimpy little thing like her was doing in one of Hojo's laboratories she had called him by name, yet he didn't recall having seen her before
"Who are you?" he demanded. She looked at him in surprise.
"You don't remember me ?" she asked, sounding hurt. Sephiroth brought the Masamune back up, so that it pointed at her throat.
"No, I don't," he snapped, his patience at last running out. He'd endured Hojo and his little games all day. If what she had to say wasn't good he'd kill her. It was that simple. "Why should I?"
"I-I lived in the village that you used to visit when you were little, near Professor Gast "
"Stop!" he cut her off. "Did you say 'Professor Gast'?" The woman nodded. He dropped the Masamune and seized her shoulders, "What do you know about Professor Gast?!" he roared, lifting and shaking her violently. She cried out in terror, but Sephiroth didn't care. If she'd been in on his killing, he'd
"He was my uncle!" she screamed, horrified. Sephiroth nearly throttled her.
"You lie!" he bellowed, throwing her from him. "If you are his niece, then what are you doing here?! Hmm?! How did you get in?! Answer me!" He stalked over to her, and grabbed her up again. "How did you know my name?! I've never seen you before!"
"But you have!" she cried in terror. "I was there, in the village, when you fell !" Suddenly, Sephiroth dropped her. He crouched on the glass-strewn floor in front of her. What fall? What was this? Perhaps he should just kill her, right now. But, wait fall? Perhaps she knew something of his past Better not chance it, he decided.
"Keep talking," he snarled.
"You were running," she began, "playing with the Professor's children. You fell, broke your leg and split your lip " Sephiroth closed his eyes, the images coming back to him even as she spoke
He ran, and for the first time in his life, he felt joy. Joy in doing something other than killing. He was playing another silly, childish game with the Professor's children, and despite the fact that he was now 14, almost a man, he found it to be much more fun than the puzzles and war games he played back at SOLDIER. He was enjoying himself. He didn't see the rock jutting out of the roadway. His foot caught on it, and he fell, his leg twisting beneath him, and breaking with an audible <crack!>. His face hit the cobblestone hard, splitting open his lip. Pain blossomed within him, though, by now, Hojo had performed the operations that would keep him from bleeding.
As he lay there, he felt a tiny pair of hands slide under his arms, lifting. There was a flash of blue as he was turned over, and a curtain of silver fell over his eyes as whoever it was bent to inspect his leg. Impatiently, he brushed his hair out if his face, and tried to see who his rescuer was.
It was a young girl.
An unusual girl too, with the strangest gold hair and blue eyes he'd ever seen. They weren't slanted like his own, yet they weren't round either. They were somewhere between the two, and infused with a soft light. Not the light of mako energy, but something else
The girl found the break in his leg, and planted her hands on either side of it. Oddly, when she had done this, the pain ceased. Then she closed her eyes, and did a most extraordinary thing. She began to sing.
Her voice was unusually pretty, and the wordless tune she sang was soft and haunting. With it, her touch became a warmth, which spread through his body. It radiated through his blood, healing him. It flooded his soul, soothing, tender
And then it was all over. There was the sound of footsteps. Lena was coming. That witch The girl got up, and made as if to run. Sephiroth seized her hand.
"What's your name?" he asked. The girl glanced apprehensively at Lena, then back to him.
"Briala," she told him hurriedly. Then she turned and ran.
"I'm Sephiroth!" he called after her. She paused, and looked back at him.
"Then goodbye, Sephiroth " she said softly.
At that moment, Lena reached him.
Sephiroth opened his eyes again, coming out of his reverie. The woman was still there, watching him with those same, glowing eyes. "Briala ?" he asked in a breathless whisper.
"Yes " she whispered back. For a moment, Sephiroth almost believed her. But only a moment.
"No," he grasped the Masamune once more, bringing the blade against her throat.
"Please Sephiroth," she begged, "you must believe me "
"Because, I came here to free you "
"How did you know I was here?" he pressed the Masamune closer to her throat.
"When you came to the Professor's cottage, a few days ago I was there "
"I didn't see you " the sharp sword edged closer.
"Please, I'll show you!" she shouted in desperation. Slowly, he released her. He wasn't worried. If she tried anything, he'd just kill her, no problem.
"Show me," he commanded.
Trembling, she stood, and, right before his eyes, evaporated. In her place was a pale white mist. A voice, her voice, rang out in his head
This is how
Then, the mist coalesced, and she was solid again. "That's how I got in," she explained. "It's also why you didn't see me." Sephiroth studied her. She was very convincing but no. It wasn't enough. In a second, the Masamune was back up, pointed at her throat.
"That's not enough," he told her coldly. "I don't believe you."
"Then there's no way that I can convince you,' she sighed, near tears. Then, a sudden thought occurred to her. "Unless "
"Let me touch you," she begged. "Please "
Sephiroth considered. She carried no weapon, but she did use magic no. If she was lying, then she must be from Hojo, and Hojo valued him too much as an 'experiment' to damage him. No. He'd let her and if it was a trick, he'd kill her.
"Very well," he growled, holding out an arm. "Touch me."
Gingerly, she brought up her tiny hand, gently touching, then caressing his. Closing her eyes, she began to sing.
The wonderful presence flowed through him once again, but stronger now. It was unmistakably the magic of Briala. It poured into his veins, and where it met mako, the mako dissolved. It found his soul, and there, it destroyed his pain. All the nightmares, bad feelings-gone. It felt
When she let go, the feeling remained. Sephiroth had closed his eyes. Now he opened them, and stared at Briala in wonder. Her touch had erased every dark feeling he'd had, except for one thing;
The desire to destroy Hojo.
But he could wait. He felt so much better now, lighter somehow. And he knew Briala would stay with him. Perhaps she'd even teach him something of his past
An alarm sounded. Inside, Sephiroth swore. Outside, he felt Briala grasp his hand, his body dissolving. Then she was guiding him under the door, to the ventilation shaft. Down through the maze of air tunnels, and
Out into the open. They drifted a ways, then Briala made them both whole again. He turned to her.
And she answered with four words that Sephiroth had once longed to hear.
"Because I love you."
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