“You can just pretend it never happened,” said Aerith, thoughtful look on her face… But he couldn’t.
What he could do, however, was push it to the back of his mind. He had other things to occupy his time and thoughts; such as preparing Radiant Garden for its grand opening.
His past experience with the delivery service was not as helpful with running Midgar’s first plant nursery as he would have hoped. There was more to gardening than throwing seeds in the dirt and hoping for the best, and with the taint of mako in soil, it was all the more difficult. Moreover, except for the few species of miraculous flowers that Aerith had in her church, nearly everything had to be imported from places beyond the city.
Thankfully, the expenses were covered by ShinRa–the next big project of the Urban Development Department. Reeve, unfortunately, had quite the black thumb and couldn’t do much but fling money and greenhouse designs at Cloud, but his enthusiasm was still obvious. In contrast, Elmyra was a great help with the hands-on aspects, having helped her daughter on occasion.
Aerith would have been the most help, but she had her plate full. Cloud still could hardly believe it: Aerith Gainsborough, Head of the Science Research Department, the position Hojo had once held and used to experiment and torture both of them. The only thing more unbelievable than that would be if Aerith were married to Rufus Shinra–which, actually, was a possibility if Aerith didn’t win their bet. She had one year to increase revenue by fifteen percent by providing an alternate energy source to mako. She certainly had her work cut out for her. If anything, the few times she was able to appear in Radiant Garden, Aerith spent most of the visit napping amongst the seedlings, soothed by their natural presence. Although, that in itself was helpful, the buds’ growth rate improved in the presence of the last Cetra.
And so for a while, distracted by concern over soil samples and seedling imports and greenhouse designs and irrigation systems and Aerith’s ongoing science rivalry/business courtship with Rufus Shinra of all people, Cloud could honestly say that as the days passed, Sephiroth never once appeared in his thoughts.
(The nights were a different matter entirely)
A/N: Some explanation necessary–this fic is a remix/sequel to linggan’s Dialectic which is itself an epilogue fic for their Juxtaposition series. Highly recommended reading. It’s a very beautifully concise story and doesn’t require you to remember every single little detail of FFVII in order to enjoy it. Go read it, seriously.
If you don’t want to, but are for some reason reading this, the fic basically (VERY basically) is a time travel fic in which Cloud somehow becomes Sephiroth’s secretary and accidentally and so subtly changes Sephiroth’s and Aerith’s lives that they save the world… kind of on accident. The drabble above is kind of reiterating what happens at the end of Dialectic (or the parts of the end that I don’t want to remix), and will probably do so for the next part at the least before getting into my modifications.
In a sentence: this drabble series is about the awkward antisocial romance between gardener!Cloud and baker!Sephiroth with added Aerith world-conquering shenanigans. For a more detailed (if, somewhat unreadable due to being a giant stream-of-conscious-brainstorm) outline, you can check out my lj post here.
By the way, linggan, I mean no offense by this drabble series. If you would like me to take this down, however, please let me know and I will do so immediately.