EPILOGUE | Just a little ending that I came up with on the spot.
He'd found a chance to unwind, Terra having found himself being dragged along into what looked like a heartbreaking place to live compared to where they'd just come from. Shacks and hastily hand-built buildings in place of houses, paths made of dirt with many footprints and wheel prints, kids and adults alike wearing old, mismatched clothes instead of the professional, well-fitting and pricey attire he'd seen in the city upon following the group out into the streets after they had to funnel through a destroyed sewer-esque path out from the Reactor.
He'd felt for them, being aware that he had it great before the events during and after the Mark of Mastery test.
Sighing softly, he lifted his gaze towards the bar, seeing Cloud sat there in silence with a drink in front of him, the woman behind the counter talking with Barret and his daughter. He eyed the blonde, gnawing the inside of his lip at the fact that they could finally have a chance to talk casually, but more for his need to know why he'd had that grim expression when Zack was brought up.
Almost as if having felt Terra watching him, Cloud looked over his shoulder and seemed exasperated, lingering before standing up and making his way over, setting his drink on the table as he sat down ahead of him.
"What?" the blonde asked, arms crossing over the edge of the table. The brunette turned to fully face him, the question on the tip of his tongue as the mood obviously dropped between them. Cloud knew what he was planning to ask, he could feel it.
"What happened to him?" he did, he saw the question coming. The look on his face had been 'expectant'.
"Zack died a few years ago," the blonde replied, his gaze lowering to his drink and Terra, Terra felt his blood run cold, his thoughts earlier being confirmed. He really couldn't imagine it, not that he wanted to, "He saved me. We were betrayed and... he refused to turn tail and run," cold and warm, his blood was conflicted. Cold for the death, but warm because it sounded like the Zack he'd met. The ambition for wanting to be a Hero, the strength and resolve in everything he aspired to be.
"He became a hero," Terra muttered his thoughts, a soft and sad smile curving his lips with sad blue eyes boring into the table.
"He was more than a hero. Zack was a legend," the way he'd said it, the tone used, he could feel the pure adoration and respect he held for him, giving him the impression that Zack had to be more than that, like the relation between himself and his Master. There was a sense of family there, "I'm pretty sure that I'm the only one that knows what he did. I wish more knew the kind of hero he was. I don't want anyone to forget him,"
"He's still here," Terra lifted his gaze to him, meeting Clouds' very confused one halfway, "You haven't forgotten him, he's in your head and in your heart. As long as even one person remembers him, he's immortal," the confusion departed, making way for a thoughtful expression and something sad reaching his eyes.
"I'm sorry that you had to find out like this," the other man mentioned with a soft tone, Terra letting his smile grow, hiding the sadness that was there. Unlike Cloud, Terra could see Zack again, if even for a few minutes or a few hours. He knew where to find him. That was why he felt guilty and felt for the blonde.
"It's fine. It's better than not knowing," the brunette replied honestly, thinking about having to tell the others what happened to the Master since they probably hadn't gotten back to their home, and if they had, then he had some real explaining to do... Before that though... he wanted to visit a friend, "Listen, I gotta get going," he mentioned softly, noting the blonde brow quirking in silent question, "I've got something important to do,"
"No problem. Be sure to visit," Cloud finally cracked a smile his way, no matter the size, that was still a smile, "See you around, Terra," the man lazily waved as the brunette stood from his seat and rounded the table, the two sharing a just as lazy high-five.
He swiftly slipped away to a quiet area of the slums, being sure that he was alone before he attempted to open a portal, eye boring into the space ahead of him with focus and confidence in his abilities, waiting and waiting before he saw the flicker of light expand and elongate. It grew to his size, a few inches taller and wider, and Terra gave one last look over his shoulder before he took a few steps forward and entered the light, a smile reaching his lips as he really did have his abilities back.
The returned-Keyblade bearer stepped out the other side of his portal, eyes falling on the large statue figures on either side of the entrance to the Vestibule and Arena. His gaze lingered for a while before he took the first few steps, guilt and pre-mourning still weighing in his chest but hidden behind a well-placed smile.
He reached out, hand pushing on one of the doors to see the familiar dimly lit room once more. Continuing forward, Terra stepped through the tunnel to the Arena, finding none other than the boy he'd been looking for. He watched him for a moment, his smile growing ever genuine above the sad one. The determination and the eager grin on the boys' face, the way he was still training even after the fights he'd been up against just to fight Terra one on one, and to then have it ruined by Hades. And he was still going...
"Zack," Terra called out, the boys head darting towards him as the brunette stepped out from the Vestibule exit and closed the distance.
"Terra! Miss me that much, huh?" his grin became a beaming smile, the boy lowering his sword and skipping over with an even stronger eagerness to his already animated way of motion. He was curious about whether or not he was like that as an adult while being a mentor to Cloud. Given the chance, he'd have to ask the blonde if or when he saw him again.
"Hey, you still on for that rematch?" Terra asked, already summoning his Keyblade and turning towards the Arena with a smirk taking place of the smile.
"Finally!" the boy boomed, fist-pumping and jogging passed him to the other side of the square, "I'll get the win this time, pal!" he added firmly, getting into place with his sword at the ready. Did he have the same fighting style when he got older?
"Let's make it a Three out of Five," the brunette suggested, readying himself by getting into position.
"You're on!" the ravenette shot back, lingering before a bell rung between them.
For those of you that continued reading after the first chapter until this last update, thank you so much, I really appreciate it.
This was honestly just me wanting to see characters that would never interact come together to play out the FFVIIR Demo.
The ending was both sad and heartwarming, and I really hope you all felt it too.
Thank you for joining me.