Title: The Wretched
Fandom: Kingdom Hearts
Disclaimer: No ownership implied, no profit gained. This is a fanwork.
Summary: Cloud mulls over his choices and his situation.
Nine Inch Nails - 'The Wretched'
Black. Cloud wasn't really surprised at his lover's choice in bedding. Black was such a utilitarian color. It hid all sorts of stains and dirt.
Yet it also showed plenty of other flaws. Stray strands of hair decorated both pillowcases and other specks of colorful fuzz were visible almost immediately when Cloud pulled the comforter back. He knew the red string was from his own pajama bottoms, and that the dark blue was from something his lover was wearing the other day.
Lover. Cloud thought the word through, amazed he was finally thinking of the other man that way. It wasn't that he was in love, Cloud didn't think he'd ever actually be in love in his life. He'd been in deep relationships, complex friendships, and strange companionships, but none of those were things he compared to the phrase 'in love'.
So a lover was just the one whose bed he found himself sharing. What else was there to their relationship? Cloud pondered the question as he sat down and kicked off his slippers. The floor was always so cold and his body was still pleasantly warm from the shower he'd just left.
Despite his current situation, Cloud felt... safe. It was a feeling almost alien to him after years of literal torture and constant fear for his life and the lives of those around him. Everything was out of his hands now - he knew not if he'd made the correct decision, but it didn't actually matter. He'd had enough and all he wanted to do was crawl under the covers and sleep for a few hours.
Still, in the fading thoughts before slumber, Cloud traced back over the details that had led him to this place. He'd been rescued from the Coliseum, almost in protest. After all, he wasn't one to back away. And his... submission and borderline contentment had taken time to develop. He wasn't one to leap from one relationship to another.
Relationship. That was almost an overstatement for what he shared with the brunette fighter. But that was past now. Happily past. The lesson he'd learned was that he was definitely not compatible with anyone with a like personality. Besides volatile and rather mind-blowing sex, Cloud couldn't think of any redeeming factors to that entire tryst.
Looking over at the pillow next to him, Cloud smiled. A couple stray strands of his own blond hair were not so terribly far away from one long piece of spun silver.
Pulling it free from the pillow, Cloud held the hair between his thumb and forefinger. It was beautiful and it caused Cloud to drift again, thinking of all of the unnaturally silver-haired people who'd drifted in and out of his life.
Part of him couldn't help but linger on thoughts of Riku. Now and again Cloud wondered what Sephiroth must have been like as a teenager. And Riku was the most obvious answer. With a smile, Cloud was ambushed by the image of Riku in Sephiroth's usual outfit. Except his mind failed to compensate for Riku's height, making it so Riku was almost swimming in the black leather.
It was nice now. Everything was peaceful and calm and Cloud never bothered to ask just how everything happened. It didn't really matter. He wasn't the world-saving hero he'd once been. There was no way for him to go back to it now. Really, it felt almost as though he had no purpose.
His days were far from dull though. There were plenty of things to do in his new home. There were heartless to destroy, and plenty of places to stretch and train both his body and mind. And there was always his lover randomly demanding both time and attention.
That word again. Lover. Maybe it was easier to think of the man as his lover than deal with his name. Somehow thinking of his name seemed wrong -- as if Cloud was committing the ultimate betrayal.
In a way, Cloud thought, he was. Yet it seemed so right.
Just then the door opened, startling Cloud for just a moment. Had he really been lost in his own mind for so long? Of course, he'd stayed in the shower longer than he'd originally intended as well. And he had needed to bandage the already-healing wound fresh from the day's run-in with a very sharp statue he hadn't been paying attention to as he ducked and destroyed a virtual legion of heartless.
"How are you feeling?"
Cloud dropped the silver strand of hair he'd actually forgotten about holding. Sure his arm ached ever so slightly but it was nothing compared to some of the injuries he'd dealt with in the past years. It was nothing compared to his years as a toy.
Maybe that was why being submissive bothered him so much, yet he was drawn to it. He was a sick fuck, he decided quickly, and would continue being one at least as long as he was welcome in this place.
"Better," he said. It was the truth. It hadn't been the pain so much as the blood really, running down his arm. That was what startled him. It was one of those wounds that looked worse than it was.
"I was going to sleep," Cloud said before instantly wanting to take it back. The way he was being watched was telling. Bright eyes were tracing his nearly nude form with an obvious appreciation.
"And what has changed your mind?"
Cloud looked away a moment, back to the black of the pillowcases. He heard the door close and latch, an odd precaution since there were no other people anywhere nearby.
"Would you care to enlighten me as to exactly what you were thinking about?"
"My unfortunate luck to crash into a statue with sharp points," Cloud replied. Weight on the far side of the bed caused Cloud to turn and look over.
Somewhere during the brief span of time his eyes had been gazing elsewhere, his lover had made short work of his clothing.
Without thinking, Cloud followed that beautiful silver hair down, it trailed over sculpted muscle until it ended, tangle free, just above the spot Cloud didn't bother deviating his gaze from.
Closing his eyes and holding them shut just a moment, Cloud wondered just how he'd ended up in this situation. His childhood hadn't been too far from normal. He'd been an outcast, yes, but that hadn't been permanent.
He'd had the world on his shoulders, and then he'd collapsed. And strangely the only one to help him pick up the pieces was the one now kissing him.
Cloud could taste the raw power the other man possessed. He could taste it just from the quick kiss that passed between them. His lover was not one to be messed with.
So what was he using the power of darkness for, anyway? He already knew it wouldn't work out. He knew this wouldn't work out. The power of darkness must, must be using him.
Cloud opened his eyes to look straight into the inhuman orange that still slightly unnerved him.
"Ansem..." He inwardly kicked himself as his voice wavered. He didn't actually know how much further he could fall. And if this was the bottom, he... he liked it.
Cloud found himself being pushed back onto the bed, onto the black of the sheets. Very utilitarian, black.
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