Sky's The Limit

[02.16.00] » by Alicia Hutchinson

"Come on, we're going to be late!" Cid's date tugged at his sleeve impatiently, her pretty face marred by a little scowl and a worry creased brow.

Cid managed to drag his eyes away from the television in the officer's quarter's common room (news from the front was on…what could be more important than that?) to look down at his highly annoyed date. She was small and slim, with ebony dark hair and expressive big blue eyes. Pretty little thing. Unfortunately, for the life of him, Cid couldn't seem to recall her name at the moment. Terry? Mary? He was pretty sure it ended in 'ry'…

"We've still got…." He checked his watch. "An hour and ten minutes! The play doesn't start until seven, and it's not even six yet."

She grabbed his wrist and stared at his watch. "Cid…your watch is an hour slow." She said with an exasperated sigh.

Cid glanced at the clock on the wall, and swore creatively under his breath. Carry (?) squeaked in distress, and Cid belated recalled that swearing in front of ladies wasn't exactly something a good officer in the ShinRa army did. Of course, Cid wasn't exactly the best-behaved officer…he was just the best damned pilot ShinRa had ever had, which was probably the only reason he hadn't gotten himself booted out of the service yet. With the war with Wutai still raging, ShinRa couldn't afford to lose a pilot of Cid's caliber.

Even if he did drive his superiors right up one side of the wall and down the other. Judging from the irritated look on his date's face, he was doing a pretty good job of doing that to her too. This is the last time I let Serigi talk me into a blind date…

"…It's not a problem." Cid forced himself to say calmly, giving her his best 'trust me' smile. "I know a shortcut. Come on!" He grabbed her wrist and took off for the door, dragging Sherry (?) along behind him.

Terry-Mary-Carry-Sherry didn't particularly like Cid's idea of a shortcut, which involved 'borrowing' a high speed assault bike from a friend of his and tearing through Midgar's back alleys at a velocity that would give any halfway decent traffic cop respiratory failure.

"EEEEEEEEEEK!" She shrieked, barely audible above the sound of the wind hissing around them as Cid neatly slid around a truck, jumped the sidewalk (nearly running over some old woman and her fluffy white dog), and skidded the bike to a stop right in front of the theater entrance. He took his helmet off, slung it over the handlebars, and turned back to look at her. "See? I told you I knew a shortcut."

His date's eyes were wide and glassy. "Y...y...y...yeah..." she sputtered.

Cid vaulted off the bike and offered her his hand. "We've even got about..." he checked his watch. "Two minutes! Plenty of time!"

Mary-Carry-Terry-Sherry took his hand and stumblingly got down, her face pale behind her helmet's visor.

"Careful now." Cid cautioned. "You'll fall." Cid dehelmeted her and gestured to the theater entrance. "Shall we go?"

Terry-Sherry-Mary-Carry didn't say anything, she mere stood trembling and attempting to smooth her hair and dress for a second or two before she unsteadily began to walk towards the doors, leaving Cid to follow, muttering to himself about the strangeness of women. Sheeesh...he'd only done what she'd asked and gotten them there on time...

By the time they'd found their seats, they'd already missed half of the newsreels. Cid cursed to himself about that; war news always went first on the reels, so by the time they got in, he only got to see the tail end of footage of the bombing of Wutai's navy. God, he missed being at the front...yeah, it was important to have the best pilots reserved for Midgar's defense, but he itched to be in the sky, not wasting time here.

"That's a ShinRa B-26 Thundermaker taking out that Wutai cap ship." Cid explained in a whisper to his date as they watched. "Shabby flying...stupid *&^%%'s lucky he hasn't gotten himself blasted out of the *&^*ing sky..."


Cid winced as a very large man in the row behind him hushed him, but failed to notice how Terry-Carry-Mary-Sherry blushed hotly and edged away in her seat away from him. Still, he held this tongue through the rest of the newsreels (something boring abut economics and some human interest garbage), and even managed to be good as the newscreen was lifted, revealing the curtained stage behind.

Sherry-Terry-Mary-Carry sat forward in her seat eagerly as the curtains parted to show an elaborate, elegent stage behind. Cid leaned back, already bored, and tried to feign polite interest.

Before act one was half over, Mary-Sherry-Carry-Terry was in tears...

And Cid was fast asleep.

"I have never, ever been so humiliated in my entire life." Carry-Mary-Terry-Sherry snapped as they left the theater, Cid still rubbing his head where the guy in the row behind them had clocked him upside the head for snoring at the very end of the play. Terry-Mary-Sherry-Carry's heels clicked angrily on the pavement as they headed out towards his borrowed bike. "You're . . .you're. . . ahhhh. . .I can't even think of any words for you!!!"

"Er...sorry..." Cid said apologetically, not quite sure what he'd done wrong.

"Pilots! I should've known better than agree to go on a date with a pilot! Mother told me all about pilots! Flying, that's all you ever think about! Flying, and war!" Sherry-Mary-Carry-Terry snapped.

She was cute when she was pissed, her blue eyes bright and her cheeks flushed, but somehow, Cid liked her better when she was mildly exasperated and obnoxious. "That's not true." Cid said. "I have a dream."

"Really, hotshot, what is it? Own the biggest, baddest aircraft on the block?" Carry-Terry-Sherry-Mary demanded, whirling to face him.

"" Cid replied. He pointed up. "Those."

"Those? Those what?" Sherry-Terry-Mary-Carry demanded. She looked up. "I don't see anything."

"The stars." Cid said. "I want the stars."

"The stars?!?!" she laughed. "Of all things? You want the stars? The sky is the limit, Cid, nobody can reach the stars. It's impossible."

Cid scowled. "No it isn't. I'm going to fly among the stars one day. That's my dream."

"It's a stupid dream." Sherry-Mary-Carry-Terry said. "You're a crazy pilot, you've got a stupid dream, and you've got the manners of a...a....a....a..."

"Stupid crazy pilot?" Cid suggested.

"EXACTLY!" She agreed passionately, gesturing dramatically as she did so. "And if I never see you again, it'll be too soon! Goodbye, Cid Highwind!"

"Goodbye...Mary?" he replied as she stormed off along the sidewalk.

She turned to face him, blue eyes glowing with menace. "My name is LISA!!!" she snarled, before huffing off.

Cid winced again. WAAAAAY off... he scolded himself. He watched her until she vanished into the crowd, then went back to his borrowed bike and sat down on it. He took his helmet, and started to put it on.

He halted, and stared up at the star filled sky. Stupid dream? Impossible? he thought wistfully. Is it really just the wistful dreaming of a crazy pilot to want to fly among the stars?

Just as he thought that, a shooting star streaked across the sky. Cid smiled. Nah...not impossible.. Still grinning, he put his helmet on, secured it, and headed back towards the barracks.


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