This is a daily reminder to myself that I love these two too much. ALSO! DOMESTIC FLUFF!
Cloud loves it when she threads her fingers through his hair. It reminds him of a warm night under the stars when he peppered promises on her skin, one final moment of vulnerability and reckless abandon before facing an unknown future. He relishes in her touch, eyes shut in pure, unabashed contentment as a lazy smile tugs at his lips, and he leans in closer to the hand playing with his hair. He catches the sound of her laughter and he thinks, barring the soft whimpers and the breathy call of his name, that it is the most beautiful sound in the world.
There is something painfully domestic about this scene, them spending a quiet and lazy afternoon in bed while the kids play outside in the streets, that pulls at his heartstrings and threatens to overwhelm him with emotions he cannot – will not – contain.
His chest constricts in welcome pain as he thinks of his life with her and the kids, and how lucky he is to have this blessing. He recognizes that pain and calls it for what it truly is: happiness. This quiet little moment between them is pure, unadulterated joy. He could have taken the alternative and live the despondent life and drown in guilt, grief, and sorrow. There are days where he thinks he still doesn't deserve this peace, but selfishness is a trait he's well acquainted with when it comes to his family.
He feels her palm brush away his bangs and he melts further under her touch when she presses a gentle kiss on his forehead. He sinks deeper in these feelings and loses himself to the moment while her finger traces random shapes on his cheeks.
"You're quiet," Tifa says to him, voice low as if a pitch higher will snap this careful quiet they've enclosed themselves with. He just hums at her, chuckling quietly as her ministrations shift from tracing shapes to poking at his cheeks. Cloud cracks an eye open to look at her and, as always, she brings him to his knees, breathless at the sight of her face.
"I love you," he blurts out. Had he been younger, sixteen and fresh out of Nibelheim, he would have flushed red, retracted his words, and ran away, refusing to show his face until he feels normal again. But he's wiser and older now – though she tells him 29 is not old – and instead lets the words hang and linger in the air.
He watches her face slowly morph into something that he can only classify as delight. Eyes creased, Tifa presses her lips to bar the laugh bubbling in her chest. Ramuh strike him, she is beautiful in every way. He thanks the heavens and the stars and all the summons in the world that allied to bring them together. He has loved her for so long, he can't even remember a day back in his childhood where he wasn't.
She doesn't hide it anymore. Her shoulders shake with laughter and openly laughs at him, and his head jostles at her movements. She's smiling, cheeks taught with a grin so wide that it threatens to split her face and leans down to place a gentle kiss on his lips.
He welcomes her and returns the kiss with equal passion. Tifa smiles and sighs against his lips. He could feel the puff of air dance across his cheeks. A warm feeling blossoms in his chest and expands outwards, travelling down to his limbs and fingertips, and settles in his stomach. He pulls away from her, but the distance he wedges between them is so miniscule, it barely matters. The tip of their noses is only just a hair's breadth away.
He needs her closer. Grunting, he props himself up with his elbows and catches her lips once more. Tifa pulls away and gestures at him to sit up - so he does. She shifts a little to give him space while Cloud pulls himself up and twists his torso so they could be face-to-face. He rests his right hand on her bare waist, and she tenses at his touch, surprise briefly crossing her face.
"I'm not even doing anything," he quips innocently while his thumb massages circles into her skin. She immediately melts against him and her head falls perfectly into the crook of his neck.
Cloud hums in bliss as Tifa peppers kisses against his neck, his hand gripping her waist tighter. He's given her no indication to stop which spurs her to grow even bolder with her moves. At first it was a simple kiss on a spot just below his earlobes, then a bite to his neck, then a nibble on his collarbone. She eventually comes back to that sweet spot behind his ears and he can't control the sigh that escapes his lips and the flush that covers his face.
Tifa rests her cheek on his shoulder and checks her husband. "Oh?" she notices the flushed look on his face and pride wells in her chest. She did this.
She's without her vest and he feels her more naturally this way. Her chest is flush against him and he is so so tempted to divest her of that white tank top and have his merry way with her, but he won't. This moment is too pure, too precious, too loving to taint with the wicked thoughts that run wild in his mind. They'd have time for that later tonight, when their children are home and fast asleep, and no one would knock down their door because of a missing sock or plush toy.
"I must have done something right today." Cloud breathes out. He hears her giggle, and again, it's the most wonderful sound in the world.
She traces the length of his arm and looks at him with eyes that leaves no room for imagination for tonight. "I love you." She says to him with no preamble.
He allows himself to lose control even for just a moment and offers her a quick preview of his plans for them tonight. He lifts both hands to cup her cheeks and kisses her with such fiery passion that it leaves her reeling and breathless. Tifa loses her balance and they fall, backs hitting the soft mattress. It's a taste of what's to come and she has never wished for the sun to disappear until now.
"Oh," she gasps. "Cloud... dinner..."
"I'm busy." He skims his knuckles at her stomach, and he smirks when she tenses.
" Oh! Okay." Tifa closes her eyes, relaxing, and lets him do his thing. She cranes her neck and gives him access to her neck which he seems to love so much. He's given her more attention there than any place, but maybe it's because of how she's always reduced to a pliant, boneless mess at even the slightest pressure from his lips. She guesses right, because the moment he nibbles at the skin near her throat, she mewls.
Oh no, she needs to stop him before they both move past the point of no return and skip dinner. They have children to feed. Gripping his shoulders, she pushes him away and gives him the most serious stare she can muster, which wasn't a lot, but Cloud understands.
With a final kiss that promises her a night full of passion and wild abandon, Cloud pulls away and yanks down her tank top. She didn't even realize that it rode up (or maybe he was attempting to take off her clothes), but never mind. She pats down her hair and tries to untangle the knots that came together and when they didn't, she sends him another glare.
Cloud doubles over, knuckles pressing against his mouth to stifle the laughter that threatened to rip away from him. He settles with scrunching his eyes up at her predicament, because they both know he was at fault.
"You look... decent."
"Decent?" She raises a questioning brow. "After what just happened? Now I know that's your other head talking, because this," she points at his actual head, "is addled."
Cloud just shrugs, content to just let her talk and win this pointless banter. He kisses her in the cheek and lies down on the bed once more, pulling her closer by the waist. She's flush against him, their bodies close and limbs intertwined, and Cloud is ready to combust with all these emotions inside of him. Tifa rests her head on his shoulders and her hand on his heart, feeling the steady rhythm of his heartbeat, and she kisses his chest.
"I'll say it again, because I can, and I have every right to do so. I love you."
"Cloud!" She smacks him on the chest.
"I give," he grins down at her and taps her nose, "love you too, Teef."