#163 – Somewhere In My Memory (part two)

Cloud: “……Zack?”

Originally Published: 2/28/06 . 18 pages

Synopsis
Will Zack ever get his memory back? Meanwhile, Rufus wants answers now that he knows he was injected with Jenova.

Ramble Milestones
-Zack gets his memory back.

Ah, Zack and Cloud. That pair was a very long time coming. I had made hints about it before, but once Zack got his memory back it was finally out in the open. Actually I’m not in love with the scene where Zack gets his memory back. I wanted something to trigger it, but he didn’t have much dialogue in the game to draw from. (This was before Crisis Core, remember!) I’m a big fan of the last scene between Zack and Cloud. It’s very sweet.

 

(when we last left off zack just basically told rufus he has jenova in his blood)

Rufus: *shocked* “…What?!”

Zack: *taken back* “…You didn’t know?”

Rufus: “No, I didn’t know!” *puts a hand to his head* “…But it all makes sense…” *mutters* “It was the Jenova revolution…and I was there…”

Zack: *leaning in to listen better* “I’m sorry…?”

Rufus: “Oh, nothing.” *pause* “How did you find out?”

Zack: “Well, when we did the paternity test for Elena. That’s when I noticed.”

Rufus: “How much was it compared to yours?”

Zack: “Oh, I don’t remember…”

Rufus: “Can you test it again?”

Zack: “I’m afraid I don’t still have the sample.”

Rufus: “Then we’ll have to do another test! And I want you to test Sephiroth and Cloud too!” *softly* “…I need to know…”

Zack: “Um, okay, I can just–“

Rufus: “Today! I want it done *today*.”

Zack: “…All right. I’ll go catch up with Sephiroth.”

(he runs out of the room. Rufus stands there looking upset)

Rufus: *mumbles to himself* “…I better not be some failed experiment, old man.”

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(meanwhile, back at the ramble room, everyone has returned back except cloud, sephiroth and rufus. Rinoa and lark have joined the group. The losers, of course, are not there.)

Zell: “So do you think us telling you our memories helped at all, Squall?”

Squall: “Whatever… I guess so.”

Rinoa: “It better be, Squall! I’m paying a lot of money for your sessions!”

Quistis: “So what? Your dad’s rich.”

Rinoa: “True…” *pause* “And dad has been throwing a lot of extra money at me lately… I wonder where he got it from…”

Zell: “Yeah…uh…I don’t know…”*shifty eyes*

(meanwhile…)

Lark: “So how did it go?”

Tifa: “Pretty well! At one point, Cloud looked at me and said ‘Tif’!”

Vincent: “I believe that was a sneeze.”

Tifa: “No! He almost said my name!!”

Lark: *looking around* “Well where is Cloud?”

Tifa: “Oh, he went with Zack. So did Sephiroth and Rufus. Zack said he wanted to test something.”

Barret: “Yeah! Probably wants to test an’ see how bad Shinra f***ed ’em up!”

Red: “No one let me get a word in to Cloud.”

Cid: “#$@#@$^%#^@#&%^$@%!”

Barret: “Damn right, Cid! Shu’ up, T-rex!”

Red: “I wish I was a T-rex. Because then I would eat you.”

(meanwhile…)

Reno: “Tseng! Dude! I thought you were going to slug Sephiroth in the face!”

Tseng: “I was about to.”

Elena: “I felt kinda funny…’cause I wasn’t a Turk then.”

Rude: “…You didn’t miss much.”

Reeve: “You did the right thing, honey! Sephiroth had a lot of nerve pinning the blame on us! We all live with the shame of what we did every day. He should be no different.”

Tseng: “True, Reeve. But unfortunately I don’t think *some* people feel any shame.” *gives him a look*

Reeve: “I know. And it was all Hojo’s idea, of course.”

Reno: “I felt kinda funny…with us all sittin’ there lookin’ at Zack. We all knew what happened to him, and he didn’t.”

Elena: “I felt funny too…”

Rude: *nods*

Tseng: “I know. But we were just following orders.”

(reno, rude and elena kind of nod, then they go their own separate ways. That leaves tseng and reeve together)

Reeve: “That’s still no excuse.”

Tseng: “Huh?”

Reeve: “Don’t use that as your scapegoat, Tseng. You *were* following orders, but because you *chose* to.”

(and with that he walks away as well. Tseng watches him go)

Tseng: “…Not everyone can be as noble as you, Reeve.”

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

 (meanwhile, in a totally separate matter over at dante and lloyd’s, zidane and lloyd are sitting in front of the tv. Zidane is playing a racing video game while lloyd watches)

Zidane: *really into the game* “Whoo hoo! This is so cool! Algus *never* lets me play video games!”

Lloyd: “Can’t I play too? It’s two players!”

Zidane: “No, Vergil! You’ll mess up winning streak!”

(meanwhile, alucard and dante are watching from the doorway)

Dante: “I don’t get it. I just don’t get it.”

Alucard: “I don’t know.”

Dante: *turns to alucard* “I mean, you’d tell me if I was totally off my rocker here, right, baby?”

Alucard: “I would.”

Dante: *looking at lloyd* “How could *anyone* stand to be with him for more than five seconds?”

Lloyd: “Shut up, Dante! I can hear you!”

Dante: “I don’t care if you can hear me, Lloyd!”

Lloyd: “It’s VERGIL #$%^&@#$%^*&!!”

Zidane: *looks at lloyd* “You curse a *lot*.”

Lloyd: “Can we have sex now?”

Zidane: *shrugs* “Yeah. Okay.”

(he shuts off the game system and they walk out of the room together. Dante and alucard look at each other)

Dante: “Let’s go drown them out.”

Alucard: *nods* “Yes.”

(they go upstairs as well, and then very loud rap music is heard throughout the house)

Lloyd’s voice: “You suck, Dante!”

Dante’s voice: “Much better than you, Lloyd!”

Lloyd’s voice: “Argh!!! It’s VERGIL!”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(meanwhile, at the doctor’s office, rufus and sephiroth sit on the table in the examination room. Zack’s getting some needles ready)

Sephiroth: “………………”

Rufus: “…Do you know why you’re here?”

Sephiroth: “I know.” *pause* “Zack said something to you?”

Rufus: “You *knew*?”

Sephiroth: “I know *now*. I didn’t know then. I didn’t even know what I was then.”

Rufus: “Oh.” *pause* “Why didn’t you tell me?”

Sephiroth: “I thought you knew.”

Rufus: “Well I didn’t.”

Sephiroth: “Does Zack even know what he’s looking for?”

Zack: *comes over* “I just don’t know what it’s called.” *to rufus* “Could you roll your sleeve up?”

(rufus rolls his sleeve up and zack preps his arm to draw the blood)

Rufus: *to sephiroth* “Who told you?”

Sephiroth: “Vincent. Who else?”

Zack: “Are you ready, Rufus?”

Rufus: “I’m ready.”

(he squeezes his eye shut and flinches a little as zack takes the blood.)

Zack: “Okay, all done.”

(he gives rufus a cotton ball to hold against his arm and turns away to go put the blood into a test tube. Rufus turns to sephiroth)

Rufus: “I’m surprised you’re cooperating.”

Sephiroth: “I don’t like you, Rufus. I don’t care how much of it you have.” *pause* “But you have the right to find out.”

(zack comes over to sephiroth with the needle ready.)

Zack: “Your turn, Sephiroth.”

Sephiroth: *grins* “My turn, huh. Let me just roll my sleeve up.” *starts to roll his sleeve up*

Zack: “So you gave me this scar?”

Sephiroth: “I did.”

Zack: “Did we not get along…?”

Sephiroth: “Oh, we got along fine. I just…well, I won’t spoil it for when you get your memory back.”

(he finishes rolling up his sleeve and sticks out his arm. Zack goes to tie the band around his arm to slow the blood flow but he stops and looks closer at sephiroth’s arm.)

Zack: *brow furrowed* “They’re very faint, but you have a lot of scars here.”

Sephiroth: “You’re the first one to notice.”

Zack: *looks at him in confusion* “You don’t strike me as former drug addict.”

Sephiroth: “I’m not. But maybe I strike you as a human guinea pig.”

Zack: “What?”

Sephiroth: “…Like I said, I don’t want to spoil it for you…but that man you didn’t know today…he likes needles too.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(back over at dante’s, alucard and dante are relaxing naked in bed just watching tv now)

Dante: *grins* “We drowned them out for sure.”

Alucard: “Yup.”

(then alucard’s cell phone starts to ring, to a rap song of course. He looks at who’s calling, sighs heavily and answers)

Alucard: “Yes, dad? ……What?! …………WHAT?! Dad, I can’t hear you! Turn the stereo off! …………Turn it off! ……………I’m going to hang up on you unless turn it off! …What? …WHAT?! ………No, dad. You called me. …………No, you called me! …………You called *me*! …Dad–…Dad! I’m going to hang up. ……No. I’m going to hang up. ……No, I am not the President of Prussia, and I’m hanging up now. ……There is no royal dolphin. I’m hanging up. ………I’M HANGING UP!” *he hangs up looking annoyed* “I should have never given him my number in case of an emergency! He doesn’t even know what an emergency is!”

Dante: “Come back to bed, baby.”

Alucard: *plops down on the bed* “I’m surprised he can even dial the phone right! The other day he kept trying to call the devil. He kept hitting 6 over and over again but all he kept getting was some old lady. He scared the heck out of her, let me tell you.”

(then they hear a loud banging noise coming from downstairs)

Zidane’s voice: “I’m leaving! And stop following me around!”

Lloyd’s voice: “Don’t leave! I’ll let you play more video games!”

(but there’s the sound of a door slamming)

Lloyd’s voice: “Fine! I don’t need you! And you’ll be back!!”

Dante: *chuckles*

Alucard: “What?”

Dante: “Either they gross me out or crack me up. I wonder how much longer Zidane can stand him.”

Alucard: “I’m surprised he’s still calling him Vergil.”

Dante: “He’ll crack with time.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

 

(back at the doctor’s office, zack is leading rufus and sephiroth outside to where cloud waits, looking dazed as usual.)

Zack: “I’ll just take Cloud’s blood sample and we’ll be all set.” *looks at cloud* “Are you ready, Cloud?”

Cloud: “…Huh?”

(rufus and sephiroth sit down. With a good natured sigh, zack takes cloud by the arm, helps him to his feet and leads him to the back. He then sits him down. Cloud keep staring at zack. Zack goes over to get the stuff ready.)

Zack: “I promise this won’t hurt, Cloud.” *smiles* “It’s just a little pinch.”

(he comes over with the needle and everything and he rolls up cloud’s sleeve. He then ties the rubber thing around cloud’s arm and gets the needle ready. Zack notices that cloud’s staring at him)

Zack: “…What?”

Cloud: “……”

(zack shrugs it off and draws the blood. Cloud doesn’t make a sound. When he’s done, zack puts a band-aid on cloud’s arm and goes over to transfer the blood into a vial.)

Cloud: “……Zack?”

Zack: *turns* “What?”

Cloud: *still staring at zack* “Z…ack?”

(zack places the stuff down and comes over to cloud, looking intently at him)

Zack: “Do you recognize me, Cloud? Do you know who I am?”

Cloud: “………”

Zack: “Did you just say my name? Do you remember me?! Cloud – do you remember me?!”

Cloud: “…Where am I?”

(zack sighs, looking defeated. He goes back to finish what he was doing. When he’s done, he goes back to cloud, takes him by the arm again, and leads him back to where rufus and sephiroth are waiting)

Zack: “I’m done. I just have to draw my own.”

Rufus: “When will you have the results?”

Zack: “Well, I’m going to do this myself, so, I’ll have them for you later tonight.”

Rufus: “Okay.” *pause* “Thanks.”

Zack: “No problem.”

(he watches as they leave. Then he goes back into the room again. He stares at himself in the mirror as he rolls back his own sleeve. Then he stops and just looks at himself)

Zack: “…Why did I want him to remember so badly…?”

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(they go back to the ramble room. tifa collects cloud, of course and we’ll get to sephiroth in a moment. Anyway, rufus passes by the ramble room and lark sees him. She’s hanging out in there with Brady, reno, tseng and irvine.)

Lark: “Hey, Rufus!”

Rufus: *just keeps walking*

Lark: *frowns* “That was weird…”

Irvine: “You think he’s mad at us about the porn tape?”

Tseng: “I don’t think he knows we talked to Sunshine about it yet.”

Reno: “He didn’t seem upset after we met with Zack or anything.”

Brady: “Maybe a business investment went sour or something.”

Everyone: “Maybe…”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(meanwhile, sephiroth has stayed outside. He’s actually sitting on the porch swing. It’s cold outside, but apparently he doesn’t really care. A minute goes by and then auron and vincent walk outside together, chatting)

Vincent: “It’s quite chilly out today.”

Auron: “Yes. Best to bundle up when it’s cold so you don’t get sick.”

Vincent: *looks at sephiroth* “Oh. Yes. Quite true.”

Sephiroth: *looks back at vincent*

Auron: “Well, let’s get going before the early bird special is over.”

Vincent: *nods while still looking at sephiroth*

(auron heads away quickly. Vincent hesitates a second more before finally looking away and following auron. They get in a car and drive away. Sephiroth watches them until they’re out of sight)

Sephiroth: *mumbles to himself* “I got blood drawn today, Vincent. …And it made me remember…”

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(meanwhile, back at the doctor’s office, zack is in the lab now analyzing the blood samples. They’re in some machine, and he’s kind of bored, walking around waiting for it to finish. He looks tired. With a sigh he sits down on a chair and starts flipping through some newspapers he had piled up on a table. He stops at one of them and kind of smiles a little)

Zack: “Hm. Mercenary organizations on the rise.” *frowns* “Mercenaries…” *thinks* “…Why does that sound so…familiar… Like I’ve had that conversation before…” *gasp*

(and zack’s eyes go wide. He sits there for a long moment in complete shock. Then he glances frantically around the room, makes a dive for the phone and quickly dials.)

Zack: “Bria!! I remember!!”

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………   

(meanwhile, back over at the ramble room, sunshine arrives with some legal papers. She comes into the ramble room where lark, Brady, reno, irvine and tseng are all playing cards)

Irvine: “Hey, Lark. How come we don’t play strip poker anymore?”

Lark: “Irvine…my fiancé is sitting right next to you.”

Irvine: “Okay…” *turns to Brady* “How come we don’t play strip poker anymore?”

Brady: *blink blink* “Are you kidding?”

Sunshine: “Hi, guys!”

Lark: “Oh, hey Sunshine!”

Sunshine: “I brought the paperwork. But I think I should talk to Rufus first.”

Lark: “Sure. He’s in his room.”

Sunshine: “Gotcha. Thanks!”

(so she goes off and knocks on the door to rufus’ room)

Rufus’ voice: “I need to be alone right now!”

Sunshine: *frowns and knock again* “Rufus? It’s Sunshine.”

Rufus’ voice: “Sunshine?”

(he comes and opens the door. It looks like he may have been crying.)

Rufus: “Oh. Hey. Come in.”

(he lets her in and shuts the door)

Sunshine: *frowns* “Are you okay?”

Rufus: “I’m fine.” *looks at papers* “What’s that?”

Sunshine: “Oh, well, your…friends called me. They wanted me to help them stop you from putting out that porn tape.”

Rufus: “Oh. I already forgot about that.”

Sunshine: “You put me on that thing, you know.”

Rufus: “I did?! Oh, gross! You’re my sister!”

Sunshine: “I know.”

Rufus: “Well, consider the project cancelled.”

(he goes and plops down in a chair with a sad sigh. Sunshine looks concerned and comes over to sit on his bed)

Sunshine: “What’s wrong, Rufus? You look troubled.”

Rufus: *sigh* “I just found out something today… Something bad.”

Sunshine: “Is everything all right?”

Rufus: *looks at her* “You didn’t know our father. And for that you’re lucky. Because he was not a nice person.”

Sunshine: “According to your friends there’s a lot I don’t know about you.”

Rufus: “Yes…there’s a whole lot. And I’m afraid not much of it was good.”

Sunshine: “I’m here to listen.”

Rufus: *sigh* “You know, there’s stuff I don’t even understand about myself. …And I’m not too keen on talking to the people who know the answers.”

Sunshine: “I’ve always kind of wondered about what happened to me when I was born too.”

Rufus: *looks at her* “Yeah. I’ve been wondering that too.”

Sunshine: “…Maybe it’s about time we both found out the truth.”

Rufus: *nods and says softly* “Maybe.”

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(back at the lab, zack is pacing when bria runs into the room)

Bria: “Zack! I came as fast I could!” *she grabs both his arms* “You remember?”

Zack: *nods* “I-I was looking at the paper, and I saw this story on mercenaries, and suddenly I had this flash of sitting in a truck, talking to Cloud about how we were going to become mercenaries.”

Bria: “You did?!”

Zack: *nods* “Yeah. And then I remember who shot me. It was Shinra foot soldiers. They had been hunting us after we escaped from Nibelheim. He kept us in tubes, Bria. Me and Cloud. And he was performing experiments on us, putting stuff into our blood.”

Bria: “Who?”

(zack pulls away from her)

Zack: *eyes narrow* “Hojo. And to believe I didn’t recognize him when I saw him today. I swore I’d never forget that slimy son of a bitch.”

Bria: “Oh, Zack. Maybe it’s not good for you to remember it all at once.”

Zack: “It’s fine, Bria. Really. I remember Sephiroth burning Nibelheim.” *touches his scar* “And I remember where I got this.” *pause* “And I remember…telling Cloud…to kill Sephiroth.” *pause* “…Cloud…” *to bria* “I have to see Cloud.”

Bria: “Okay. We can go tomorrow.”

Zack: “No! I have to go now!” *he grabs some papers off the lab desk* “I promised these to Rufus anyway.” *heads for the door*

Bria: “Zack–“

Zack: *turns back to her* “Bria, before when I was taking Cloud’s blood he said my name. I *know* he said it. And I wanted him to remember me. I wanted him to remember me so badly. But I didn’t know why. And it was the strangest feeling in the world. But now I know why. Now I know why I wanted nothing more than to have him know who I was!”

Bria: *small smile* “And why is that, Zack?”

Zack: “…Because I love him.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 

(back at the ramble room, rufus is alone again. He hears a knock on his room)

Rufus: “Who is it?”

Zack’s voice: “It’s Dr. Zack.”

Rufus: “Oh! Just a minute.”

(he opens the door and zack’s there.)

Zack: “Hey. My memory’s back.”

Rufus: “Holy white materia! Really? Already? What happened? Did you hit your head?”

Zack: “In a way. But it’s not really important. I have the results.”

(he goes over to rufus’ bed and spreads the papers out)

Zack: “This is you, this is Cloud, this is me and this is Sephiroth. I think the chart speaks for itself.”

Rufus: *looking at it* “Whoa.”

Zack: “The amount of Jenova cells in Sephiroth is practically off the charts, while yours is on the low side of the things. Cloud and I are in the middle, but for some reason mine seems more stable than his. I can’t explain it.”

Rufus: *looking at him* “Jenova. You *do* have your memory back.”

Zack: *nods* “And let me ask you something, Rufus…it was Hojo, wasn’t it, who ordered the soldiers to shoot me.”

Rufus: *nods* “You two were his prized experiments. He hated to see you go.”

Zack: “And you? Do you think you’re an experiment?”

Rufus: “I don’t know… But I’m determined to find out.”

(there’s a knock at the door and bria pokes her head in)

Bria: “Zack? Are you ready?”

Zack: “Sure. Just a sec.” *to rufus* “I hope… I hope this helps. I didn’t mean…”

Rufus: *nods* “It’s fine. There are just some questions to be answered now. That’s all.”

(they shake hands and then zack follows bria out. She takes him to cloud’s room, where tifa is waiting.)

Zack: “Hi, Tifa.”

Tifa: *smiles* “Hi, Zack. Congratulations on your memory.”

Zack: “Thanks.” *pause* “I just need to speak to Cloud alone for a minute.”

Tifa: *gesturing inside* “Be my guest.”

(zack goes into the room cautiously. He shuts the door behind him. Cloud sits there smiling, but he says nothing. Zack goes over and kneels in front of cloud.)

Zack: “Cloud… I remember, Cloud. I remember everything we went through. I remember what they did to us. I can’t stand to see you like this. And I’m going to do everything in my power to help you remember. I want you to look at me and know who I am again. Shinra got the best of me before. But… But I won’t let that ever happen again.”

(cloud’s eyes still look blank. Zack sighs and looks upset, like he’s about to cry. He doesn’t say anything else as he stands up and leaves the room, closing the door behind him.)

Cloud: “…………………………Bye, Zack.”

 

 

THE END

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