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Disclaimers and Notes: Same as before. Uh huuuuh. Still no Sephiroth? My bad...

When You're Evil and Dead
By: Sforzie

Chapter 25: Angels (FO: Part 4)

“You?!” Kefka stood up in surprise as the figure approached.

“Hey, no need to get upset,” Zidane said with a nervous laugh. He leaned over the unconscious form of Kuja, giving her a light tap on the forehead with his sword. (The Angel Bless, wouldn’t you know.) “Hey, wake up.”

Kuja groaned, her eyes fluttering open after a moment. “Whu…Zidane?”

“In the flesh!” he grinned. “Well, in the spirit at least.”

“What are you doing here?” Kefka asked as Kuja got to her feet.

“Saving your butts, I think,” Zidane said, motioning to the dead dragon. Kuja brushed her skirt off as she looked at the fallen monster.

“Thanks…”

“Don’t mention it,” he said with another forced laugh. “It’s kinda my fault you guys are here anyways. I thought I’d just lend a helping hand.”

“I don’t get it, though,” Kuja said. She adjusted her jacket, ignoring the lecherous look from Kefka. “I thought that you weren’t allowed to help in this matter.”

“Well, technically I’m not supposed to,” Zidane said, his tail swishing. “But I’m allowed to help if I really want to…”

“You really want to?” she looked surprised.

He nodded. “Yeah, I do. I was just as responsible for bringing the Genomes to Gaia as you were…more so, since I could have just left them all there to die.”

“Which goes against your nature.”

“Uh huh…” the blonde head bobbed in another nod. “And now the Genomes have practically overrun the planet. They control every continent, except the Mist continent. Right now they just control Alexandria…”

“But they plan on killing the regent of Lindblum in order to start a war that will let them get the rest of the Mist Continent,” Kuja said evenly.

“That’s right. The royal family of Alexandria is pretty much descended from one of my and Garnet’s kids,” Zidane explained. “Our daughter, Synth. She was the only one of our kids born with a tail. The others had horns, but… since Synth was the oldest, she inherited the throne. She married a Genome. Their heirs married Genomes… after a few generations, the royal family in Alexandria was completely composed of Genomes. That’s how they got situated here.”

“So it really is your fault.”

He blushed. “Yeah.” Zidane cleared his throat and shook his head quickly. “The Preventative Measures agency didn’t want me to get involved, because they were worried that I wouldn’t be willing to off one of my own descendents.”

“Are you?” Kefka piped up.

“After this long… the blood ties aren’t as strong as they used to be,” Zidane said in a serious tone. “I can take a tangible form too, Kuja. I… I want to help you two.”

"Welll..." she looked over her shoulder at Kefka, who shrugged lightly. "I guess it's alright for you to tag along for now..."

"Great!" Zidane said, shouldering his the Angel Bless. "Oh, and I've got a letter for you." He fished a piece of paper out of his pocket. "From Sephiroth."

Kefka's lip curled as Kuja took the paper from her brother. "What's he up to.."

"He was looking for you two," Zidane explained. "Seems you've been gone awhile."

"Like he cares," Kefka grumbled.

"'Hey, where are you guys? Hope you come back soon, the Cat is getting on my nerves. Kefka, you'd better not touch Kuja. If you do, well, you know the consequences...'" Kuja paused as Kefka laughed sarcastically. "...Kuja, come back in one piece. Why not try to leave him behind while you're at it? See you, Sephiroth.'"

"That sword-toting putz!" Kefka stomped his foot.

"Hey!" Zidane clutched his sword defensively.

"He meant Sephiroth, not you," Kuja said with a chuckle.

“Oh.”

"Still trying to one-up me," Kefka muttered as they continued the trek to Lindblum.

"You know, Zidane, I thought you said that you didn't skip ahead in the story," Kuja said thoughtfully after a few minutes.

"Hmm?" the blonde Genome tilted his head. "Oh, you mean with me watching things progress.... well, I'm allowed to skip ahead if the time calls for it."

"Eh," she said with a light shrug. "So tell us, if the Genomes have so much power, why don't they start a war outright? Why depend on this Annel Torvel guy to get the job done?"

"It's all about placing blame," Zidane said. "If this Torvel guy is unsuccessful at completing the job, the blame for the attempt will only go to him, and not to all of Alexandria."

"Like when the old regent of Lindblum had you boys kidnap Princess Garnet," Kuja said.

"How'd you know about that?"

Kuja shrugged mildly. "I knew an awful lot back then."

Zidane withheld the obvious comeback, and continued with his explanation. "On top of merely being appointed by the royalty of Alexandria to commit this crime, Annel Torvel is also a bit of a religious fanatic."

"The papers I got didn't really say anything about that..."

Zidane shrugged and then grinned. "Remember, I sit around and watch things all the time. So I kinda know what's going on."

"Then englighten us, brother of Kuja," Kefka drawled.

"I am, if you'll let me continue."

Kefka and Kuja stuck their tongues out at the blonde as he briefly turned to check for monsters.

"All right, anyhow..." Zidane turned back to the villains. "Annel Torvel is a member of 'Si Moneum tansi Kujat'."

"Translation?" Kefka piped up.

"'The Church of the Angels'," Kuja supplied. Zidane nodded.

"You mean like in that chapel you blew up!" Kefka giggled.

"You blew up a church?!" Zidane balked. She shrugged.

"I was upset."

Zidane shook his head. "I guess I shouldn't expect anything better from you two."

"Of course not!"

Zidane cleared his throat. "The church started off as more of a cult, a few hundred years after I died. They believe in a higher form, a god persay, but they believe that he conducts all his business through two angels."

"The Soul Destroyer and the Soul Restorer."

"Well, that's what they're called now. Originally they...well, we were referred to as the angels of Life and Death. Somewhere along the line, they started referring to the Angel of Death as a fallen angel--a demon-- and the titles were changed."

Kuja grumbled under her breath.

"Torvel thinks that he has been given permission by the Soul Destroyer to kill the regent," Zidane continued. "He thinks that the Destroyer will give him the power he needs to complete the task."

"Why me and not you?"

"Because he's trying to kill someone, not save their life," he said simply.

"Oh..."

"And he thinks you'll protect him from the wrath of the Soul Restorer."

Kuja laughed shortly. "Fat chance."

"The church is a bit twisted, really," Zidane said. "They fear both the angel and the demon, and yet they pray to both for protection and aid."

"Strange."

"What about the god that they serve?" Kefka wondered. "Do they fear him?"

Zidane shook his head. "Not really. They view the god as something of a mediator between the angel and the demon."

"Pooh," Kefka sighed.

"They recognize the need for both the angel and the demon, which is why they pray to both," Zidane said. "Life and death are both needed to keep existence in balance."

"Then why did they try to destroy me?" Kuja said with a sour expression.

"Because they didn't think you were the real Soul Destroyer, probably."

"Yeah, they called you a representation, Kuja-doll," Kefka added.

"That's right...they thought I was just another run of the mill demon," she grumbled. "I'll show them run of the mill!"

"I think you already did, uwee hee hee!"

It had grown dark while they walked.

"How much longer is it until Lindblum, anyways?" Kuja said irritably. "I'm getting sick of walking."

"I could carry you," Kefka offered cheerily.

"No, you can not," she retorted a bit too quickly. Zidane snickered.

"You would think that the Preventative Measures people would have picked someone less whiny for this job..."

"I'm not whiny!" Kuja huffed. "I'm cranky!"

"You'd be cranky too if you'd been Thundaga'd on a few times," Kefka said. Zidane rolled his eyes.

"For villains, you two sure have gotten wimpy."

Kefka and Kuja glowered. Zidane sweatdropped, raising his hands in defense.

"Just... kidding?"

"You'd better be," Kuja growled. Kefka nodded sharply in agreement.

"But, uh... anyways, Lindblum should just be after this next mountain."

"That's what you said three mountains ago," Kefka snapped.

"I did? Oh, well, I mean it this time!"

 

Under the twin covers of darkness and invisibility, the trio eventually made their way into the massive city of Lindblum. Zidane hopped along eagerly, with the villains trailing behind tiredly. Despite the late hour, there was still a fair amount of traffic on the streets. They chose to remain invisible for the time being. They stopped at a city park a short distance within the castle town walls.

"I'm bushed," Kefka sighed, sitting heavily on one of the park benches. "Can't we stop for a little while a rest?"

"You're dead," Zidane said, annoyed. "You don't need to rest!"

"Says you," he said, closing his eyes.

"Besides, what if Annel Torvel is heading towards the regent's residence right now?!" Zidane paced, tail twitching anxiously.

"Why don't you scout ahead, since you're so energetic," Kuja suggested, flopping onto the bench next to Kefka. "And we'll wait here for you."

"Fine! Sit here on your lazy asses, and I'll go find out where Torvel is!"

"Sounds good to me," Kefka said, slumping over a bit and resting his head on Kuja's shoulder. She sweatdropped, but didn't move him.

"Once a hero, always a hero," she said lightly.

"Yeah! I'll go find Torvel..." He shifted the Angel Bless on his back. Tail swishing, Zidane stomped off in the direction of the castle.

"Idiot," Kuja muttered under her breath.

They sat in silence for several minutes, the only sounds coming from the night traffic in the city around them. Eventually, Kefka shifted a bit.

"Is he gone?" the blonde whispered.

"Yeah, he's gone," she nodded slowly.

"Good," Kefka sat up, brushing a few stray blonde hairs as he did so. "Your brother is terribly annoying."

"Yeah. Don't worry, we'll get rid of him soon enough."

"Times like this I'm glad I went to hell, so that I don't have to put up with those goody-goodies forever," he said, a wry grin twisting his blood red lips. Kuja laughed softly before stifling a yawn.

"Zidane means well, which I suppose is part of the problem..." she yawned again. "He just, I dunno..."

"Is annoying."

She laughed again, leaning heavily against Kefka. "Ugh, I need a nap..."

"You and your naps," he smiled. She shrugged lightly.

"I've always been a napper... even when I was alive..."

"Well, I'll wake you up when Zidane gets ba--" Kefka paused, looking at Kuja. Her head had nodded a few times before dropping against his shoulder. "Uwee, not such a bad idea."

Both villains were asleep when Zidane came running back about an hour later.

"You guys! Wake up! I found Torvel!"

"Hunnh?" Kuja lifted her head, blinking groggily. "Say what?"

"I found Torvel," Zidane repeated. "He's in a little chapel down on the other side of town."

"Good for him," she muttered, elbowing Kefka.

"He's been praying to the Soul Destroyer... based on what I heard, he plans to go kill the regent during the guard change just before daybreak."

"Oh...Then I guess we'd better get going..." she punched Kefka in the arm. He snorted lightly, inhaling in noisy surprise as he lifted his head.

"Whaaa?"

"Zidane found Torvel," Kuja said, indicating the Genome who was pacing in front of them. "Time to go."

"Great," Kefka rubbed his eyes. "Let's get this stupid charade over with already."

"Sounds like a plan to me."

"Just what is our plan anyways?" Kuja looked at Zidane, who shrugged.

"We'll see when we get there, I guess..."

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end chapter 25