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I did not write this essay I am merely posting it for others to see!
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Why Cloti Is Not Canon

by Anastar

For approximately the past year, CloudxTifa fans have been claiming that Cloti is canon in articles as well as in debates. In truth, this is only the opinion of Cloti fans. SE has not stated a definite conclusion to the Love Triangle in any Ultimania or other official source, nor has SE portrayed a definite conclusion to the Love Triangle in any game, movie, or novella.

The main pieces of evidence being used by CloudxTifa fans are:

1) A page in the 20th Anniversary Ultimania called the "For The One I Love" page. This is often abbreviated as the FTOIL page. This page was used as the basis for an article at the Lifestream.net where it is stated that the Love Triangle debate is over. Here is a link to that article:

http://thelifestream.net/ffvii-advent-children-complete/6139/this-just-in-the-love-triangle-debate-over/

2) Eight different statements made in different Ultmania's including the FFVII Ultimania Omega, the FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, the Crisis Core Ultimania, and the 20th Anniversary Ultimania. These statements are frequently used in debates to "prove" that Cloti is canon.

This article will completely review all of this evidence to show why none of it actually proves that Square Enix has declared CloudxTifa to be the canon couple of Final Fantasy VII.

The "For The One I Love" Page
There was an article published at The Lifestream.net over a year ago declaring that Cloti is canon. Here is the link to that article:

http://thelifestream.net/ffvii-advent-children-complete/6139/this-just-in-the-love-triangle-debate-over/

In actuality, this article does not prove that Cloti is canon. Let me explain fully:

What is true in the article
Square Enix did in fact publish an article in the 20th Anniversary Ultimania about romantic couples in the different Final Fantasy games. It is also true that there is a picture of the Highwind scene in that Ultimania article about romantic couples. It is also true that there is a picture of the CloudxAerith date scene in that Ultimania article about romantic couples. Here is a scan of that page from the 20th Anniversary Ultimania:

http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff97/Alexa024/20thAU-FTOIL.jpg

The caption under the HW scene picture says that Cloud and Tifa confirm that their feelings match without using words. That is true.

The caption under the Clerith date picture says that which character shows up for the date is under player control. That is true.

What is False in the Lifestream.net Article
The article at the Lifestream.net states that the "For the One I Love" page confirms that Cloud and Tifa love one another. That much is false.

In reality, the "For the One I Love" page says only that Cloud and Tifa confirm their love for one another in the High Affection version of the Highwind scene.

The article at the Lifestream.net neglects to mention that the Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania also specifies that there are two versions of the Highwind scene, and that which version a player gets is determined by Tifa's affection level with Cloud. Tifa's affection level with Cloud is governed by the Date Mechanism, which is under player control.

Information Omitted from the Lifestream.net Article
If you look at the picture of the Highwind Scene on the "For the One I Love" page, there is a page number at the top of the picture to be used as reference. You can see that page number with a red box around it in the close up here:

Posted Image

See the page number 232 there? If you turn to page 232, it says this:

Deviation
Two versions of the conversation before the final battle
Prior to the final battle, the contents of the conversation between Cloud and Tifa can change depending on the degree of Tifa's affection.
If the degree of affection is high, the contents of the two's conversation will involve deep subject matter and strong feelings for each other. As well, the sight of the two seen by their companions the next morning will lead to an embarrassing scene for Tifa, and she blushes greatly."
~page 232, Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania

The Lifestream.net omitted this information on page 232 from their article, even though page 232 is actually cited as a reference for the Highwind scene on the "For the One I Love" page.

The paragraph on page 232 of the 20th Anniversary Ultimania clearly says that there are TWO VERSIONS of the Highwind scene, and that the conversation between Cloud and Tifa will change depending to the degree of Tifa's affection with Cloud. In other words, there is more than one way for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another during the Highwind scene.

That same paragraph on page 232 then goes on to say that Cloud and Tifa will have strong feelings for each other only IF the degree of affection is high. In other words, there is more than one way for Cloud and Tifa to feel for one another during the Highwind scene.

That information was omitted from the article published at the Lifestream.net.

Since there is more than one way for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another during the Highwind scene, then there is more than one way for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another at the end of the FFVII. That clearly means that the High Affection version of the Highwind is not canon.

Instead, the version that a player gets depends on the degree of Tifa's affection for Cloud. Cloud and Tifa do NOT have to share strong feelings.

None of that was stated in the TLS article.

In fact, there are three different places in the Ultimania's and official sources where Square Enix clearly states that there are two versions of the Highwind scene, and that Tifa's feelings depend on the degree of her affection with Cloud.

1) Deviation
Two versions of the conversation before the final battle
Prior to the final battle, the contents of the conversation between Cloud and Tifa can change depending on the degree of Tifa's affection.
If the degree of affection is high, the contents of the two's conversation will involve deep subject matter and strong feelings for each other. As well, the sight of the two seen by their companions the next morning will lead to an embarrassing scene for Tifa, and she blushes greatly."
~page 232, Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania

2) Changeable event 3 (before the final battle)
Another event is when the party was dismissed and after everyone left for their own places separately, Cloud and Tifa spent the night together.
At that moment, according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud, the event of "dialogues exchanged between them from dusk to dawn" and "Tifa's reaction and lines when she found out that everyone might see (or hear) that circumstance" will be different.
~FFVII Dismantled, page 201

3) After stopping Hojo from going amuck, the conversation with Tifa before they rush into the Northern Crater diverges into two conditions, according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud. When it gets low, the conversation in the scene that they spend the night will be apathetic and ends short. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa says "Were you listening?" and stamps on tiptoe. On the other hand, when degree gets higher, the conversation of the scene that they spend the night will have strong emotions. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa will say "Were you watching?" and feels terribly shy ~page 198, Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega

None of that information was provided in the article at the Lifestream.net where Cloti was said to be canon.

What those three passages mean is that there are two different ways for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another during the Highwind scene as well as at the end of Final Fantasy VII. How Cloud and Tifa feel for one another depends on Tifa's affection level with Cloud, and that is determined by player choice.

At no time does Square Enix say that one version of the Highwind scene is canon. At no time does Square Enix say that there is only one way for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another during the Highwind scene or at the end of the game. At no time is any definite form of relationship portrayed between Cloud and Tifa after the Highwind scene in the game(s), movie(s), or novella(s).

None of that was stated in the TLS article even though it has a major affect on the meaning of the article.

Major Contradiction
Now, here is what the TLS article says about the Clerith date picture:

Nothing so amazing, no, all it tells us is that the date itself is up to player control, so no one version is "official"

Page 232 of the Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania clearly says that the Highwind scene has two optional versions, which means that the Highwind scene is also under player control, just like the Date scene.

If TLS says that no one version of the Date Scene is official (canon) because the scene is under player control, then why does TLS say that the High Affection Highwind scene has an official version (canon) when it's also under player control?

What the page from the 20th Anniversary Ultimania really says
There are two FFVII pictures on the page about romantic couples in the 20th Anniversary Ultimania - a picture of the CloudxAerith date scene and a picture of the Highwind scene.

Both the CloudxAerith date scene and the Highwind scene are pictured in the section of the "For the One I Love" page for Romantic Couples. There is a separate section for Platonic Relationships.

Both the CloudxAerith date scene and the Highwind scene have a page number referenced where the Ultimania explains that both scenes have optional versions.

Final Fantasy VII is the only game with a picture of the main hero with two different women. Both Aerith and Tifa have been designated as heroines of Final Fantasy VII.

Kitase: When I first read Nojima’s scenario, I felt strongly that his image of a heroine was fresh. The hero didn’t have a typical personality, single-minded or righteous, and Aerith lived in the slums. Those things were really fresh. And having two heroines, Aerith and Tifa, and having the hero waver between them, at the time that was something new. ~Interview with the creators, pg. 8-13, 10th Anniversary Ultimania

There is literally no reason for the Clerith Date Scene to be on the "For the One I Love" page if Cloti is being declared canon on that page. There is literally no reason for the Clerith Date Scene to be on the "For the One I Love" page unless CloudxAerith is also being pictured as a romantic pairing in Final Fantasy VII.

CloudxTifa fans have argued that the Clerith date picture is on the page because the page is showing all romantic confessions in the games, but that's not what the caption of the page says. The title and caption of the page say:

For the one I love
Through the long journeys, the love of the protagonists develop. Occasionally they become separated, but the two’s value to one another gives them the great strength to overcome whatever crisis may come.


The "For the One I Love" page is about love between the protagonists of each game. Both Aerith and Tifa are protagonists (heroines) of Final Fantasy VII. Both Aerith and Tifa are pictured with Cloud in Final Fantasy VII scenes which have optional versions. Both pictures on the "For the One I Love" page are labeled with reference page numbers where it is designated that there are optional versions for each scene.

It is clear that the "For the One I Love" page is really saying that Cloud is able to love either Aerith or Tifa, or both of them, in Final Fantasy VII. Who Cloud loves actually depends on Aerith and Tifa's affection level with Cloud. There is no "canon" result.

Therefore, neither couple is being declared canon. Instead, the page of the 20th Anniversary Ultimania is saying that who Cloud loves is up to player control.

So what the TLS article said about the LTD being over is completely false. It's only the opinion of TLS that the LTD is over. SE has never stated that the LTD is over, nor has SE ever stated that either couple is canon.

Other Evidence Used As "Proof" That Cloti Is Canon
Eight different statements have been made in different Ultmania's including the FFVII Ultimania Omega, the FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, the Crisis Core Ultimania, and the 20th Anniversary Ultimania. These statements are frequently used in Love Triangle debates by CloudxTifa fans to "prove" that Cloti is canon.

Each of those statements will be examined in this section to show that none of these statements actually provide any conclusive evidence about the Cloud/Tifa relationship. Let's start with quotes from the FFVII Ultimania Omega.

1) Quotes from the FFVII Ultimania Omega
There are four quotes from the FFVII Ultimania Omega written by Square Enix which are used by CloudxTifa fans to "prove" that Cloti is canon. Three of those quotes are automatically disqualified as evidence when you realize that the FFVII Ultimania Omega specifically says that there are two possible versions of the Highwind scene, and that which version a player gets is determined by Tifa's affection level with Cloud:

After stopping Hojo from going amuck, the conversation with Tifa before they rush into the Northern Crater diverges into two conditions, according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud. When it gets low, the conversation in the scene that they spend the night will be apathetic and ends short. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa says "Were you listening?" and stamps on tiptoe. On the other hand, when degree gets higher, the conversation of the scene that they spend the night will have strong emotions. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa will say "Were you watching?" and feels terribly shy. ~page 198, Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega

Notice that this passage in the FFVII Ultimania Omega specifically says that the Highwind scene diverges into two conditions according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud. The passage does not designate either the High Affection or the Low Affection version as canon, so both versions are possible.

Since both the High Affection and Low Affection versions are possible, then the following three quotes cannot be referring to Cloud and Tifa's feelings in the High Affection version only:

"Declares that the team should dissolve in the final hours before the final battle, and communicates his feelings together with Tifa, who remains behind at the airship with him." ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 15, Cloud's profile

"When Cloud proposes that the group separates temporarily, she remains behind at the airship and communicates her feelings together with Cloud. " ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 27, Tifa's profile

"When their companions disperse to the places where people important to them await, Cloud and Tifa are the only two to remain behind. They reveal their mutual feelings in their final hours, and......." ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 198, story summary

None of these three quotes specify what kind of feelings Cloud and Tifa communicate during the scene. Since Cloud and Tifa communicate feelings in both the Low Affection and High Affection versions of the Highwind scene, then "communicate feelings" may be referring to either or both the High Affection and Low Affection versions of the scene.

There is a fourth quote often used by CloudxTifa fans which also comes from the FFVII Ultimania Omega. Thing is, this fourth quote specifically refers to what happens during the High Affection version only, and designates that it happens only during the High Affection version:

"If Tifa's affection regarding Cloud is high, when the two stay behind at the airship, they will confirm that their feelings of desire/wanting for one another match." ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 27, Tifa's profile

Frankly, I do not know why this quote is even used as evidence, since it specifically says that Cloud and Tifa only confirm feelings of desire/wanting when Tifa's affection level with Cloud is high. It says nothing about the high affection level being canon, or about the High Affection version being the only possible outcome.

2) Three Quotes About the Highwind Scene Use the Phrase "想いを通わせる". This Phrase Supposedly Indicates Romance.
There are three other quotes used by CloudxTifa fans in LT debates to "prove" that CloudxTifa is canon.

In the Japanese, these three quotes use the Japanese phrase "想いを通わせる". In LT debates, many CloudxTifa fans claim that the only possible thing this phrase can mean in Japanese is that romance exists between the two people mentioned. Here are the three quotes they are referring to:

"She communicates her feelings together with Cloud in the final stages of the story, and in AC and DC they live together." ~Crisis Core Ultimania, pg. 33, Tifa's profile

"Declares that the team should dissolve in the final hours before the final battle, and communicates his feelings together with Tifa, who remains behind at the airship with him." ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 15, Cloud's profile

"When Cloud proposes that the group separates temporarily, she remains behind at the airship and communicates her feelings together with Cloud. " ~FFVII Ultimania Omega, pg. 27, Tifa's profile

First of all, two of those quotes are from the FFVII Ultimania Omega. As explained above, the FFVII Ultimania Omega makes it clear on page 198 that which version of the Highwind scene a player gets is dependent on Tifa's affection level with Cloud. If the FFVII Ultimania Omega explicitly says that which version of the Highwind scene a player gets is determined by Tifa's affection level with Cloud (which means the scene is under player control), then the FFVII Ultimania Omega is not saying that one version of the scene is canon.

However, the first quote comes from the a different book - the Crisis Core Ultimania. So let's look a little more closely at the phrase "想いを通わせる" to see whether the only possible meaning is that romance exists between the two people mentioned.

Two experts in the Japanese language have definitely stated that the phrase "想いを通わせる" can be used to describe relationships other than romance, and that the meaning of the phrase "想いを通わせる" actually depends on the context of the story. You can see those statements at the following links:

1) http://www.japanforum.com/forum/japanese-language-help/41533-phrase-%E6%83%B3%E3%81%84%E3%82%92%E9%80%9A%E3%82%8F%E3%81%9B%E3%82%8B.html

「想 いを通わせる」, all by itself without context, is very difficult to translate as it covers a wide range of meanings including the three types of "feelings" [friendship/closeness/something besides romance] mentioned by you. The phrase can be used when there is a high level of communication and understanding between any two (groups of ) people.

It can be between a teacher and his/her class, between two friends, between parents and their kids, etc. The point of the word 「通う」 is that something exists "two-way" instead of "one-way". If two persons speak to each other all day everyday without ever understanding or respecting each other, this word cannot be used to describe the state of their relationship.


This person specifically says that the phrase 「想いを通わせる」 can be used to describe relationships other than romance.

2) Another Japanese language expert says this about the phrase "「想いを通わせる」":

http://www.allexperts.com/user.cgi?m=6&catID=1797&expID=116720&qID=5004875

Question: So would you rely on this sentence *alone* to PROVE that the two are romantically involved, or would you need further evidence from the story to conclude that?

Answer: I would rely on context to show that.


This person specifically says that the meaning of the phrase "「想いを通わせる」" depends on the context of the story. Please note that this question was asked to clarify another explanation of the phrase given at this link:

http://www.allexperts.com/user.cgi?m=6&catID=1797&qID=5001685

It can easily be seen from these answers that the phrase "想いを通わせる" does not prove that a romantic relationship exists between Cloud and Tifa. Further evidence is needed from the story in order to draw that conclusion.

3) Pictures Used In the Story Summaries "Prove" That Cloti Is Canon.
Two other quotes from the Ultimania's are used in LT debates by CloudxTifa fans to "prove" that CloudxTifa is canon. According to CloudxTifa fans, these two quotes supposedly "prove" that Cloti is canon because there is a picture of the High Affection Highwind scene found next to these two quotes in the story summaries:

"Cloud and Tifa, who remain, reveal their feelings for each other and confirm them to match." ~FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, pg. 118; pg. 120 in the Revised Edition; story summary

"And when Cloud and Tifa remain behind alone, in their final hours, they disclose that their feelings for each other match." ~FF 20th Anniversary Ultimania File 2: Scenario, pg. 232; main body of FFVII's story summary

A scan of the first quote can be seen here:

http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff97/Alexa024/10thAUstorysummarypage-1.png

CloudxTifa fans claim that these two sentences, both of which appear in story summaries, MUST be talking about the High Affection version of the Highwind scene because a picture of the High Affection version of the Highwind scene appears next to each of these sentences. CloudxTifa fans claim this can only mean that the High Affection version of the Highwind scene is canon, and therefore that CloudxTifa is canon.

Well, there are several problems with this claim.

In the first place, CloudxTifa fans use the exact same logic to disprove CloudxAerith. There is a picture of the Clerith date scene on the "For the One I Love" page next to the paragraph about the Secret Date. Yet, Cloti's say that the Clerith date scene picture doesn't prove anything on the "For the One I Love" page. Here is a scan of the page:

http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff97/Alexa024/20thAU-FTOIL.jpg

CloudxTifa fans say that the Highwind scene picture means that Cloud and Tifa are in love, but CloudxTifa fans also say that the Clerith date scene picture doesn't prove anything about Cloud and Aerith being in love.

Why do the pictures of the High Affection version of the Highwind scene in story summaries prove that the High Affection version is canon if the CloudxAerith date picture is meaningless on the "For the One I Love" page?

What else could the Clerith date scene picture on the "For the One I Love" page mean when all other couples shown on the page are romantic couples?

If CloudxTifa fans claim that the Clerith date picture on the "For the One I Love" page is meaningless, then the High Affection Highwind scene picture are also meaningless.

Another thing makes me question whether a picture of the High Affection Highwind scene next to a statement in the story summaries means that the High Affection version is canon. Is it more likely that stock photos of the Highwind scene were used in the story summaries, or that particular photos of the scene were chosen by Nomura, Nojima, and Kitase to represent which version is canon? Is it more likely that graphic artists randomly chose photos of the Highwind scene from a stock file when laying out the page, or that Nojima, Nomura, and Kitase were there insisting that certain photos of the Highwind scene be used so that fans would know which version is canon?

Why would SE use a photo next to a single sentence in a story summary to let fans know which version of a scene is canon, especially when there are other photos on the same page along with many other lines of text? Here is a scan of the page:

http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff97/Alexa024/10thAUstorysummarypage-1.png

Is this a likely way for SE to solve the question of who Cloud loves in Final Fantasy VII?

SE Has Also Stated That The Love Triangle Is Up To Player Interpretation
In actual fact, Square Enix has stated a number of times that they have left the question of who Cloud loves up to interpretation. For example, Nomura said this in an interview with Dorimaga magazine in November, 2005 (after the release of Advent Children):

A Final Fantasy VII fan interviewed Tetsuya Nomura for Dorimaga magazine and asked "How many girls has Sephiroth ever loved?". In reaction, Nomura spoke evasively in anticipation of more questions regarding Cloud and Tifa's love life, which have nothing to do with Sephiroth.

Tetsuya Nomura: What kind of question is that? I've never thought about it. Honestly, I don't care who loves whom. I think you could imagine the scenerios that we don't mention however you want to. You could enjoy talking about that with friends. For example, I was frequently asked if there had been romantic relationship between Tifa and Cloud for two years, after FF7 ended, but I don't have any clue.
~Dorimaga magazine; interview with Nomura; November, 2005
English version: http://flaregamer.com/b2article.php?p=109&more=1
Japanese version: http://ff7-material.jugem.jp/?eid=2086

In the AC Prologue book, Nomura also talked about leaving things up to the interpretation of the player:

Nomura : "AC is a piece of work made by Japanese people. In Hollywood movies, I think there is a tendency where the meaning of all the scenes have to be expressed clearly but, this isn't something like that. With our work, the viewer is free to decide how they interpret or enjoy it. The staff has their own answers to all the scenes in the movie such as the angel statue that makes an appearance many times. But, even if someone who has watched it interprets it differently, then that is just another answer. I guess "comparing answers" with friends is one of the ways you can enjoy the movie. I think AC is a movie that makes those who have watched it, want to talk about it with others." ~FFVII AC Prologue Book

Nomura also talked about leaving room for everyone's line of thought in the Kingdom Hearts Ultimania Guide:

Question: Okay then, so the person who Cloud is searching for is Aeris, right?
Nomura: Well, what do you think? If indeed it was Aeris, then the bit in the ending was the answer. You might say it was made so that you can take it that way. Cloud is a popular character, and I don't really want to decide myself, yes he is like this. Because players make strong conclusions by themselves, I want to leave room for everyone's line of thought.
~Kingdom Hearts Ultimania Guide Translations by Thorfinn Tait

The following quote from Nomura has also been stated on a number of forums and websites:

"I'd say, [who Cloud likes] is all how you perceive the game. Cloud, as you know, is a very popular character, so I don't want to confirm the answer either way. Since the players have affection towards him, I want to leave it up to the players to decide who Cloud likes." -2002 interview with Tetsuya Nomura

In all of these quotes, Nomura makes it clear that he would rather leave the question of who Cloud loves up to the interpretation of the player.

Summary
1) Square Enix has clearly specified that there are two versions of the Highwind scene, and that which version a player gets is determined by Tifa's affection level with Cloud. This means that there are two possible ways for Cloud and Tifa to feel about one another during and after the Highwind scene. This was stated clearly in three different official sources:

Changeable event 3 (before the final battle)
Another event is when the party was dismissed and after everyone left for their own places separately, Cloud and Tifa spent the night together.
At that moment, according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud, the event of "dialogues exchanged between them from dusk to dawn" and "Tifa's reaction and lines when she found out that everyone might see (or hear) that circumstance" will be different.
~FFVII Dismantled, page 201

After stopping Hojo from going amuck, the conversation with Tifa before they rush into the Northern Crater diverges into two conditions, according to Tifa's affection rating with Cloud. When it gets low, the conversation in the scene that they spend the night will be apathetic and ends short. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa says "Were you listening?" and stamps on tiptoe. On the other hand, when degree gets higher, the conversation of the scene that they spend the night will have strong emotions. Next morning in the cockpit, Tifa will say "Were you watching?" and feels terribly shy ~page 198, Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega

Deviation - Two versions of the conversation before the final battle
Prior to the final battle, the contents of the conversation between Cloud and Tifa can change depending on the degree of Tifa's affection. If the degree of affection is high, the contents of the two's conversation will involve deep subject matter and strong feelings for each other. As well, the sight of the two seen by their companions the next morning will lead to an embarrassing scene for Tifa, and she blushes greatly.
~page 232, Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania

In these three passages, Square Enix clearly states that there is a version of the Highwind scene where Tifa's affection level with Cloud is high, and a version of the Highwind scene where Tifa's affection level with Cloud is low.

From this, it is easy to see that Cloud and Tifa get romantically involved ONLY when the degree of affection between them is high. Cloud and Tifa do NOT get romantically involved with each other when the degree of affection between them is low.

2) Square Enix has never stated that either the High Affection or the Low Affection version of the Highwind scene is canon. Square Enix has stated that the Clerith date scene is default, but Square Enix has never said that the High Affection Highwind scene is canon.

3) Square Enix has never conclusively portrayed Cloud and Tifa as being in a romantic relationship in any of their games/movies/novellas after the Highwind scene. Although it is possible to interpret their relationship as being romantic, it has never been conclusively portrayed that way after the Highwind scene.

We never hear Cloud and Tifa say, "I love you" to one another. We never see Cloud and Tifa kissing. We never see Cloud and Tifa embracing. Cloud and Tifa never get married. There's never beem any conclusive evidence which confirms that Cloud and Tifa are romantically involved after the Highwind event. Case of Tifa even leaves it up to interpretation as to whether or not Cloud has his own bedroom, and a single bed is seen in Cloud's room during AC/ACC. CloudxTifa romance is left completely up to speculation.

I've heard CloudxTifa fans say that it's not in Cloud and Tifa's nature to be demonstrative in front of other people. Well, SE was able to get Squall and Rinoa alone in order for them to kiss at the end of FFVIII. SE got Tidus and Yuna alone for them to make out in the Macalania Spring. Why can't SE get Cloud and Tifa alone if SE wants to show that they're romantically involved?

An optional scene is not enough to prove that a couple is canon, especially when SE has never officially stated or shown conclusive evidence in the game(s)/movie(s)/novella(s) that either version of the scene is canon.

There is simply no definite evidence that Cloud and Tifa are romantically involved. It's totally left up to speculation.
 
 
So, I was thinking. Can anyone else think of some pro Clourith scenes/evidence/facts that prove then canon without being optional? Comment what you have and I'll ad them.

Cloud liking/missing Aerith’s smile, laugh, and eyes.
Cloud accepting a date from Aerith. 
Cloud and Aerith having a date in the Moogle park.
When Cloud risks his own life and freedom to go and save her.
When Cloud says to Aerith that he’s there for her.
Cloud and Aerith excluding Tifa.
Cloud sharing a two person world with Aerith.
Cloud and Aerith having their marriage predicted along with being perfect for each other.
Cloud's mind almost shattering because of Aerith simply left his side.
Cloud chasing after Aerith in his dream just because he didn't want her gone, which was before he knew Sephiroth was going to harm her. Cloud’s heart breaking when she died.
Cloud proclaiming to Sephiroth that he didn’t care if he destroyed the world and everyone on it now that Aerith was dead. 
A piece of Cloud being lost when he lost Aerith.
Cloud telling Tifa that he wants to meet Aerith in the promised land.
Aerith being engraved in Cloud’s heart for eternity.
Cloud having undying feelings for Aerith that are different from the platonic love of their friends.
Cloud suffering in loneliness until he realizes Aerith is with him.

...Cloud yearning for Aerith,Cloud wanting her forgiveness more than Anything,
Cloud and Aeriths affinity prediction,
Cloud thinking of/remembering Aerith a lot after she died,
Cloud and Aerith having a matchmaker(<;),
Cloud asking Aerith who he is,
Cloud hearing Aerith in his Heart/Soul,
Aerith being engraved in his heart/Someone he'd never forget,
Aerith loving Cloud much more than Zack,
Clouds promised land being Aeriths Church,
Cloud living in "his place"/Aeriths Church,
Aerith being "very dear" to Cloud,
Aeriths smile being a "good purchase for Cloud,
Cloud and Aerith's "Stars" being a PERFECT MATCH. (submitted by fiore neve)



 
 
30 January 2011 @ 10:39 pm
(DISCLAIMER) To avoid any confusion. The quotes used in this essay taken from the Art Collectors cards do not prove Aerith's date simply because they speak of Aerith's date. They help give insight to Aerith's date because of the context within these quotes. For example, these quotes don't just show Aerith's meaningful lines that she only says on the date, but these quotes literally say her date happened. THAT is why these give further detail to what happened between Cloud and Aerith during the date. Again, these quotes don't prove she's the date because they simply show reference to Aerith as the date.

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I've seen quite a few people claim that it's Cloud and Tifa who are the default date for a few reasons. And hopefully I can somewhat prove it's Aerith who is the default date. And yes, I know. I'm going to be trampled underfoot for writing this, but hey, what can a girl do?

Argument 1. "The U20 & VII's 10th AU shows a picture of Cloud and Tifa's date."
Yes, it's true. The U20 and 10th AU do show Tifa's date. In the FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, Cloud's profile page, it has this;
user posted image
[FFVII] "Both Aerith, who is forthright, and Tifa, who is demure, have feelings for Cloud but he is none the wiser to them."

And in Tifa's U20 profile this is said;
[FFVII] "She is shy when it comes to love. She's getting better at plainly expressing her feelings to Cloud, though, and can do so more easily now."- translated by TresDias

As you can see, neither of those quotes says anything about which girl is easiest to get or is the normal choice. It just goes on about how Aerith is able to tell Cloud her feelings when Tifa cannot. But there's no evidence that supports the idea of Tifa being the default date. Nothing like one of the creators saying she's easiest to get or is the normal choice. Nothing.

Argument 2. "The song that plays during that scene is "Interrupted by fireworks/Drowned by fireworks" which matches Tifa best because Tifa doesn't get to finish telling Cloud her feelings because she is literally interrupted by fireworks."

The second and most known argument used. The song that plays on the gondola is indeed a song named "Interrupted by Fireworks."

But this song doesn't just play on the date. In a matter of fact, it plays many other times that I can think of right off of the bat.
First, when you are walking the train-tracks in Coral. Second, is when Caitsith tells everybody that he'll solve the puzzles in the Temple of the Ancients. And most importantly, this song plays when Cloud and Aerith have their stars being perfect for each other and then their affinity predicted. It's clear that this song, "interrupted by frieworks/drowned by fireworks," plays in other scenes besides the date.

So if the song's name held any meaning at all to any of the scenes it appears in, why isn't anyone being interrupted when Caitsith solves the puzzle or when you're walking the train-tracks of Coral?

Because, the song is just a song that appears in the game, it has no meaning behind it. Another thing, Tifa is interrupted just as much as anyone else on the date is. Aerith says she wants to meet Cloud as the fireworks start, and then nothing more is said. That's being interrupted.

If anything, this song matches Cloud and Aerith more than anyone else. It not only plays during their affinity prediction, but also any time Cloud remembers Aerith. So it makes much more sense that the song is a Cloud and Aerith tune rather than a song made simply for Tifa, to which it has no connection to.

Argument 3. " Is because Tifa was interrupted on the date, it matches the Highwind scene--since she is able to finally make her feelings obvious. Therefore it matches the storyline better for it to be Tifa."

This has to really be the only argument to me that makes any sense at all.

First and foremost, both Highwind scenes, whether low or high, hasn't been confirmed to be default or canon. So even if Tifa's date matches the High affection Highwind scene it doesn't matter because the High affection highwind scene isn't canon nor default. But if we're going to claim a certain date is default because it plugs in with the story better. Aerith being Cloud's date outweighs the reasoning for Tifa easily.

First of all, in the beginning of the game, Aerith asks Cloud to become her bodyguard, in which Cloud replies by telling her "it'll cost her", which she then promises a date and Cloud Agrees.

Aerith: "Say, Cloud. Have you ever been a bodyguard?"
Aerith: "You DO do everything, right?"
Cloud:"Yeah, that's right."
Aerith: "Then, get me out of here. Take me home."
Cloud:"OK, I'll do it... but it'll cost you."
Aerith:"Well then, let's see......"
"How about if I go out with you once?"
(Cloud makes an affirmative nod. He confronts the person.)

I know some will try and claim that Cloud doesn't agree. But if Cloud didn't accept the date as payment, then why would he be protecting her? He just got finished telling her that it would cost her for his protection. She offers the date for his protection and Cloud immediately confronts Reno, A Turk coming after Aerith.

If Cloud didn't accept her date as payment for his protection, then he really wouldn't have started to protect her so quickly. If he didn't accept the date, then he should have at least told her they'd figure out how else it will "cost her" after he rescues her from Reno. But he didn't. Instead, after he hears how she plans on paying him back, he nods his head and quickly turns and faces Reno--the person who Aerith is running from, protecting her in the process.

You can find the video of Cloud accepting the date as payment; Go to the time of 6:54-7:02

{if GIF is not working, click here}
It's very clear that Cloud nods his head in that scene to accept Aerith's date as payment for him protecting her. But, still, some would still ignore Cloud's affirmative nod. This gif, however, proves he does in fact nod to her proposal of one date for his protection. Moving on...

To add to this, both Cloud and Aerith speak of their "promised date" through out the game; the scene when they're locked in the Shinra jail; they speak of their promised date and how it was the deal they made in return for Cloud's protection.

Aerith:"I knew that Cloud would come for me."
Cloud:"Hey, I'm your bodyguard, right?"
Aerith:"The deal was for one date, right?"


So, here they are speaking about how the deal for Cloud to be her bodyguard is for one date in exchange. Again, if Cloud didn't accept the date, why are they speaking about how the "deal was for one date?" And if Cloud didn't accept her date, then he should have surely said so here, shouldn't he? Did he? No. Of course not. Because the date with Aerith is exactly what he wanted from her. Not money like he forced Tifa and Barret to pay him with... just one magical date.

The date is reinforced by the fact that Aerith calls Cloud her bodyguard in these scenes;
-As they're crossing the rooftops after leaving the Church:
Aerith "...Your eyes. They have a strange glow..."
Cloud "That's the sign of those who have been infused with Mako..."
"A mark of SOLDIER."
"But, how did you know about that?"
Aerith "........Oh, nothing."
Cloud "Nothing....?"
Aerith "Right, nothing!"
"Come on, let's go! Bodyguard!"



-When Aerith introduces Cloud to Elmyra:
Aerith "I'm home, mom."
(Her mother, Elmyra, walks over.)
"This is Cloud, my bodyguard."
Elmyra "Bodyguard.....? You mean you were followed again!?"
"Are you all right!? You're not hurt, are you!?"



As they're leaving Midgar (an optional response):
<CHOICE> Really? ...You worried?
It's dangerous. You sure you want to go?

Cloud: "Really? ...You worried?"
Aerith: "A little,... no, maybe a lot. But I have my bodyguard, right?"
Why would Aerith be calling Cloud her bodyguard if he wasn't her bodyguard? And more importantly, why is Cloud allowing her to call him bodyguard? Perhaps, because, he IS her bodyguard? And for Cloud to be her bodyguard that would involve Cloud accepting Aerith's date as payment. Since, payment is what Cloud wanted to be her body guard in the first place.

Well, Aerith's words obviously don't mean anything in the LTD. How about Cloud's own words, then? Through the game, we see Cloud even believes he is Aerith's bodyguard. And this is not only reinforced by all the times he protects her, but also by this quote found in the FFVII Dismantled. Page 141.

Well, it's midnight already, seems about time to leave for the 7th Street.
Aerith declared that she'll show me the way. But if I let her, it seems hard to tell who's the bodyguard. I'm gonna slip out of here.

It seems as though, Cloud does think of himself as Aerith's bodyguard, meaning, he did accept her date, otherwise he wouldn't be calling himself her bodyguard if he didn't get payment.

More evidence to support this notion is found in the same book, Dismantled, this is said;Page 148
Aerith: Well, as for the one-date payment, I think I should make it two!

Why would Aerith say this if Cloud didn't accept the date in the first place? Simple, because he did.

Also, Aerith being the default date is further proven by the following scan and translation of a FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania page.
user posted image

Translation done by Saeki of the CxA forums:
Top left :
Cloud, come and rescue me okay?
Top Middle :
Are you okay?
Top right :
Aerith : I'm looking for you.

Centre :
FFVII has always been in our hearts ~

This page is showing significant scenes from the game. And as you can see, the date that is shown is Aerith's along with her line "I'm looking for you".  To think, if Tifa's was the default date one of her lines would appear on this scan?

And, from the Final Fantasy Art Collection, an official collection of collector's cards;
#065 AERITH GAINSBOROUGH
Going to the Promised Land The fated meeting with Cloud wavers the fate of Aerith. The Cetra language that Aerith heard from her mother when she was young. A person who nurtures the Planet. As the last of the Ancient race, she takes it as her responsibility to go to the Promised Land that she has not seen. Aerith sees traces of Zack in Cloud and her very pure heart leads her to develop a liking for Cloud.

Well then, let's see...... How about if I go out with you once?
(Payment for Cloud.)


No, Cloud... I'm searching for you...
(First and last date.)

For it to have been Tifa as the default date, that means Cloud and Aerith's date couldn't have been said to be their last. Because, supposedly, Cloud and Aerith's date never happened--so again, how can a date that never occurred be their last?  This alone might not canonize the date, but it definitely gives us more detail as to what happened between Cloud and Aerith on this date in the city of desire.

#111 The Planet's largest amusement park is run by Dio. Cloud and company visit this place many times in their battle. They meet Cait Sith here. A promised date that ends in a magical night. In the city of desire that floats above the sands, the light memory of the two people is asleep even now...
I think I must have seen him again, in you... But you're different. Things are different... No, Cloud... I'm searching for you...
The first heavy font part--A promised date that ends in a magical night--could only be talking about the date Aerith promised Cloud for his protection. If it was Tifa who was supposed to be the date, it wouldn't be described as a "promised date." As we all know, no where in the game does Cloud or Tifa ever promise the other a date. The only person to promise a date is Aerith to Cloud. No one else. Aerith promising Cloud a date is also reinforced by Nomura in the following VIIUO quote:


This is the payment she suggests when Cloud says that it'll cost her to hire him to be her bodyguard. This line shows the composed and mischievous side of her. It may be because of this promise that it's easier to have Aerith be the other party in Cloud's date when they're in the Gold Saucer. ~pg. 30, FFVII Ultimania Omega

Notice how it says because of Aerith's promise to Cloud for one date it makes her as the date easiest to get? As said above, the "promised date" in the "city of desire" that "ends magically" is indeed Cloud and Aerith's date.

You've all read it yourself, the promise of paying Cloud with one date, makes it easier to get Aerith as Cloud's date. Again, if Tifa was the default date, it should be Tifa who is the easiest date to get, not Aerith. But, this isn't all we should look at. There's also this DISMANTLED quote:

1. In Aerith's case, if you play the game normally, the partner that generally comes will be Aerith. ~FFVII Dismantled

So there's also a quote saying that Aerith is the girl to come as the date if you play the game normally. If Tifa was the default date, why is Aerith the date you get if you play the game normally? Shouldn't it be Tifa? Why is Tifa an abnormal date to get if she is in fact the default/canon date for Cloud?

And if the song "Interrupted by Fireworks" had any meaning or significance to the date at all, especially if the song only fits Tifa, it should be Tifa who is easiest to get on the date. It should be Tifa who comes if you play the game normally. Not Aerith.

One last detail one must keep in mind is this last quote published in FINAL FANTASY VII DISMANTLED that takes place during Cloud's dream in the forgotten forest: 

Aerith : Oh, Cloud... I enjoyed our date at the Gold Saucer. The view from the gondola that night was really beautiful.
I'll never forget it.

I'll never forget you, Cloud...
Take notice to the very very very important detail in that sentence. What is it that jumps out at you? What wins the utmost attention? If it's not "I enjoyed our date at Gold Saucer" than you probably just can't believe something as inarguable as this could exist. It's like, Square Enix really really did not want anyone to have any ounce of confusion about which date is canon, and boy! did this quote hammer home which girl Cloud went on the magical date with in the city of desire.

The wonderful thing about this specific quote is that many many Cloti fans use the fact that the High Affection Highwind scene is referenced many times throughout the ultimanias that that must mean the HAHW scene is the canon outcome. Surely if THAT logic officializes the HAHW scene in their opinions, than a nonoptional scene including Aerith recalling her and Cloud's date in the Gold Saucer definitely canonizes the Clerith date.

So, what's the conclusion?
That Aerith is Cloud's default/CANON date.

One last thing I'd like to point out; in the scan from the Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania Clotis have claimed that Cloud and Tifa are canon because they *think* that the high affection version of the Highwind scene is default-despite there not being any supporting evidence to prove that-

They like to ignore that Cloud and Aerith's date is also shown on that same exact page. And would you guess what scene is shown? The magical date in the city of desire that Cloud and Aerith go on. Clotis like to say it doesn't mean anything because all the date quote speaks of is how multiple people can appear on the date. However, Clotis ignore that the highwind scene is also said to be optional with no canon outcome.

But if the obvious default date is Aerith, and the default highwind scene still hasn't been made clear like the way the date has been spoken about, isn't it kinda obvious which couple of the two has more significance in that scan?

The default and canon date for Cloud and Aerith on a page about love and romance VS an optional scene with no canon outcome?

Kinda self explanatory, isn't it?
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Thank you for reading. Comments are appreciated.
 
 
30 January 2011 @ 10:12 pm
Star Crossed Lovers... a love that could never be...

Cloud and Aerith only knew each other for a few weeks, but despite that they managed to build a bond and a two person world together. Cloud gallantly broke into the Shinra headquarters to save Aerith, even though he knew her for about two-three days. We got to see two mature people, develop a bond with each other, that neither shared with anyone else. We saw them create their own two person world, shutting out all else.

The most beautiful part about Cloud and Aerith's tragic love story, is that Aerith showered Cloud with genuine love and adoration. She believed in Cloud, even without him being a famous hero. She managed to be the first one to make Cloud laugh. Out of everyone Cloud knew, it was Aerith that he first started showing concern and care for.

Aerith was the first one to genuinely like Cloud for Cloud. And that in turn broke down the walls Cloud built around his heart. Before Aerith, he was a man unbound by principles or emotions. He was a cold, careless mercenary taking any dangerous job possible as long as the price was to his liking. And after he met her, those walls came crashing down. Suddenly, after meeting his flower girl, Cloud began to show concern for others, he started to care for the fate of the planet and the people. He wasn't a cold angry person anymore, he was a brave and strong man.

Aerith's death came out of no where to Cloud, he wasn't expecting it at all. He was putting their journey on hold just to go rescue Aerith at the Forgotten city. And when he got there he was almost forced to run his sword through the very woman he loved. And when he was stopped, he got to see the sickening sight of his nemesis kill her instead, right in front of his eyes as he stood powerless. He was hopeless, he couldn't do a thing to save her, that alone must be the most torturous nightmare to live through. On top of that, he had to hold her lifeless body in his arms as he tried to shake her awake. He was shaking her awake because he was in denial that this was really happening to him...  to them. And as he sat there grieving, he had to listen to her murderer laughing and gloating over her death.

Literally, as his heart was breaking from losing her, he had to be the one to carry her to her final resting place.
Not even Romeo and Juliet can top that. :{
 
 
30 January 2011 @ 10:10 pm

℘.s. ⅈ ℓ٥ﻻ ﻉ√٥υ
all Avatars made by whispyr@Lj

10 Reasons to Support CloudxAerith


1. 
Love at First sight is probably cliche to others, but the way Cloud and Aerith do it is just so beautiful.

They both meet on the streets of Midgar in early December. Despite being a man unbound by emotions or principles, Cloud immediately notices Aerith's innocent green eyes and after buying a flower from her, he says her smile was a good purchase.

The cutest part about them is that this meet cute of theirs is a direct parallel of Pygmalion. A love story about a rich, cold, man meeting a flower girl of the slums, selling a flower for one shilling, just like Aerith sells her flowers for one gil.

Cloud fell in love with Aerith the moment he saw her, hence why he was so gallant in going to rescue her by all means, even if it meant going against all of Shinra. However, I don't think he realized he was in love with her until she entered his dreams.

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2. 
Cloud's Undying Love & Yearning for Aerith:
When in Cosmo Canyon, Aerith tells Cloud how she feels alone, and when he sees her hurt he begins to say he's there for her, but because of his shy and awkward ways, he stops his true feelings from slipping and adds; "...we're here for you."

This is something we've never seen Cloud do before. Comfort someone else and say he's there for them. This was the first time we saw Cloud be so warm and comforting... and it was to Aerith. He was falling so quickly in love with her that when he heard her feeling alone he wanted to tell her that he was there for her. In ADVENT CHILDREN, when Cloud meets Aerith in their flower field Cloud is said to have felt a sense of yearning for Aerith. Cloud yearns for Aerith.

Definition of yearning:
–noun
1. deep longing, esp. when accompanied by tenderness or sadness: a widower's yearning for his wife.
2. an instance of such longing.

This is the most we've ever been told about Cloud's feelings. Why would he yearn for her, if he didn't love her?

In an interview from Nomura, he said that all of Aerith's friends carry their own love for her. He adds next that Cloud has his own undying feeling for Aerith. The word used in that interview to describe Aerith's friend's love is AIJOU or 愛. This word can be either platonic or romantic, depending on it's usage.

In this interview Nomura does something very interesting. He says Cloud's undying feeling is different from Aerith's friends. It's safe to say her friends, Yuffie, Red XIII, Vincent, Cid, Cait Sith, Tifa, and Barret all have platonic aijou/love (愛) for Aerith--with that in mind,  Nomura says Cloud's undying feeling is different from their friend's platonic aijou/love. What's opposite of platonic love? Romantic love.

This is backed up when we take into account that Nomura said Cloud's feeling is undying. What feelings are usually undying? Hatred or love. Cloud definitely does not hate Aerith, which means Cloud's undying feeling is that of love. Especially after we understand that Nomura directly said Cloud's undying feeling is different from the platonic love of their friends.

And no, this feeling isn't Cloud's guilt over failing to protect her. As we know, Cloud is healed of that guilt. Making it not undying.


It's a piece of magazine report from 電撃PlayStation Vol.385, 386, 387, titled "DESIGNER'S NOTE:
"Nomura : I believe, for those who formerly traveled with her as comrades and for the viewers, each carries their own feelings and love for Aerith. In this story, Cloud also carries his undying feeling for Aerith even to this very day... It's relations with this church scene is... Yup. I'll leave this part to your imagination. (Laughs)"


"Before the Forgotten City, Cloud saw an illusion. Behind his back(Aerith was there), Cloud had a sense of yearning, and then heard the innocent, tender voice, which never changes from the first"-----Anniversary Ultimania
 
 
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3.
Soul Mates: Bond & Two Person World -
They're bond. It's just so romantic to know that Cloud shares a bond with a woman he only knew for two weeks. For two people to develop something as strong and magical as a bond... it can only mean love.

Their two person world that they developed in days. A bond that Tifa was jealous of. Why would she be jealous if it was platonic? Besides that, honestly, I'm not sure how two people developing a two person world couldn't be romantic. I don't think we hear of Cloud developing a two person world with anyone else but Aerith either.

What does it usually mean to have a two person world? It means that these two people, who share a bond, create their own world together. Why create a world in which only they know of? Because to each of them, the other is all they need. It means, they want a place only they know of. Having a world in which only Cloud and Aerith exist in means they're all they want.


And then when she leaves for the forgotten city, Aerith enters Cloud's dream through his heart. And then, when he's in the Forgotten City, he hears and feels her in his soul. To feel someone in your soul makes them your soul mate. To hear their voice in your soul while no one else could, makes them your soul mate.

And Cloud hears and feels Aerith's voice/presence in his soul--making them soul mates.

FFVII: Seeing Cloud and Aerith developing their world together before her eyes, she inadvertently lets slip her peevish feelings.(Tifa's profile, 10th Anniversary Ultimania)
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4.
 Cloud, despite only knowing Aerith for two days, decides to gallantly rush into the heavily guarded Shinra Headquarters to save Aerith by all means. He risked his freedom and life to go and save her. Why would this previous cold, emotionless man(who wouldn't help out friends for free)want to save a flower girl from the slums that he just met?

It's incredibly romantic that Cloud would risk AVALANCHE, risk his freedom, AND risk his own life to go and save her.

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5. 
Cloud and Aerith are like fire and ice. He's a simplistic, awkward enigma, yet strong and caring for his friends. Cloud usually doesn't have strength to do certain things, but when Aerith gives him that push it's like he knows he can do anything. Without her forgiveness, Cloud saw no reason to try and live.

Aerith's straight forward with her emotions and thoughts. Her pure and innocent personality can even out all of the negativity in Cloud's heart and soul. She's someone who can make him see the hopeful side of life instead of thinking the bad will always happen. She makes him laugh when no one else could. She made him start to care for others. Cloud's got good in him, but Aerith chips away the walls around Cloud's heart to really let him show through.

In a nut shell, instead of being exactly the same as Cloud, it's opposites that make these two so beautiful.  Cloud's a jaded, heart & soul, and Aerith's an innocent ball of happiness and light--Cloud doesn't need someone exactly like him, that would just create more depression and darkness, he needs someone that he can depend on, not someone that clings to him.
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6.
Cloud's attracted to her. The first thing that Cloud noticed about Aerith when he met her on the street was her "impressive jade eyes." He called her eyes impressive, and I don't think Cloud's ever said that about anyone before. He says that her smile was a good purchase. Why would a guy say a woman's smile was a good purchase? Because he liked it.

And then after she dies Cloud goes so deep into remembering Aerith's smile that he says it was like a flower. He says she used to smile like a flower... I for one, have no idea how a person can smile like a flower--but Cloud seems to believe that her smile was like one. Flowers are symbols of beauty. He was comparing her smile to a flower to convey how beautiful her smile was to him. He then adds how she'll never smile again... and then adds the most heartbreaking thing... that he won't be able to hear her innocent laugh ever again.

He gave her laugh more depth and remembered how innocent it was. The depth of detail Cloud's paying to her is more than enough to confirm how attracted he was to her.
And on top of that, Cloud misses her smile and her laugh. Heck, the depth he gave her attributes is more than enough to prove he loved her.

For Cloud to miss the smile and laugh of a woman he has a bond and two person world with is... by far the most romantic thing I've ever heard from Cloud.

Aerith used to smile like a flower, all the time... But, Aerith won't smile anymore. I won't be able to hear her innocent laugh again.
What did she do?
Why did Aerith have to die?
-DISMANTLED

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7.
Their date & Their Perfect Affinity... their magical date in the city of desire. Cloud accepts that date and it shows one thing for sure. That he wanted that date. Even if this is an optional scene, it counts because Nomura and SQ has said that she is the easiest date and that she is the normal date to take place. On that magical date, they take part in a play, where their roles are of a night and a princess named Rosa(parallel to an FF love interest). In that magical date, Cloud kisses her hand. The only kiss we ever see Cloud give to anyone.

But more importantly, on that date. We learn that Aerith wants to meet Cloud. Even though at this this time Cloud wasn't quite sure what she meant, at the end of the game, Cloud tells Tifa that he wants to meet Aerith in the promised land.

This is significant because it's both Cloud and Aerith sharing a mutual wish and desire... which is to meet each other. And as Shakespeare said... Journeys end in lovers meeting.

Before Aerith dies, Cait Sith tells Cloud and Aerith that their stars are perfect for each other, that they're so perfect for each other that a wedding would have awaited for them down the road... but she died. If Cloud didn't love Aerith, there would have been no point in adding in that they were perfect for each other, or that they would be married.


After solving the puzzle about Cat Sith's replaceable body, he tells one last fortune of Cloud and Aerith's affinity.

The result of it turns out "Aerith-san's star and Cloud-san's star! They promise a great future!"

After that, it will become a sad prediction if we get to know what would happen afterward. But if we can catch the meaning of the "future" from another angle, we can see hope.....perhaps.

Caption:
Cat Sith's lines which seem to expect Cloud and Aerith's wedding now makes it more painful.
-Ultimania Omega

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8.
Cloud and Aerith exclude Tifa, and I'm sure it's not just Tifa he excludes... it's everyone. Cloud excludes everyone else(including Tifa) from him and Aerith. He wouldn't do that if he wasn't romantically interested in her, that's for sure.

When Cloud and Aerith exclude Tifa, her emotion is sometimes becoming of jealousy.-Dismantled

_______________________________________

9.
When she dies, Cloud's heart breaks... it breaks in the most poetic way possible. His heart was going to fall apart... fall apart because he lost her and her alone.

Out of all the friends around that alter during her death, Cloud's pain was the strongest. It was the sound of Cloud's heart cracking...the cry of his heart that came through to her.

If Cloud just felt platonically towards her, his pain and hurt wouldn't have been focused on. His heart wouldn't have been described as "falling apart"

During her death, Cloud declares to Sephiroth that his "stupid plan" of destroying the world and the "cycle of nature" didn't mean anything now that Aerith was gone...

Sephiroth's plan involves killing the planet... and everyone on it, including Tifa. Cloud was so hurt and heartbroken over her death that Cloud didn't care what happened now that she was gone. For Cloud to say that everyone on the planet possibly dying doesn't matter to him now that Aerith was gone, speaks volumes about how much Cloud loved her.

In Dismantled, Cloud asks himself "Why did Aerith have to die?" This shows Cloud was in so much pain that he would have preferred anyone over her being taken. I know that can sound harsh, but, Cloud loves Aerith. I guess someone can say that is irrational but it's human. And Cloud was in pain from losing the woman he loves... It's normal for someone to be wishing, praying, that it wouldn't have been the person they love to die.

Another thing, their friends give Cloud their condolences, as if he's a grieving husband. They either look at him, hug him, or place a comforting hand on his shoulder--but no matter what they do, they act as if it's Cloud who was the most hurt by it. Why? Because he loved her.

What did she do?
Why did Aerith have to die?
What am I supposed to do about this anger, it's  endlessly boiling and burning up my body. 
-Dismantled

___"She watched Cloud's face which looked as if his heart was going to fall apart from the sadness of loosing her, the anger and hate he had for her being taken from him."

___"It wasn't the sound of her cry. If it was then she would have felt the blood gushing up through her throat and the fury that forced its way out from the depths of her soul -

It was the sound of Cloud's heart cracking. It was the cry of his heart that could never be healed of the grief he had towards Aerith's death, the blame towards himself and the hatred he had for Sephiroth.

She was surprised at the great sorrow he had for her. She was a little happy that he thought so much of her but she also felt the pain that was many times greater. There was nothing she could do about Cloud's suffering and the pain ached in her heart.

The pain continued even though she was in the Lifestream."
-Maiden.o.t.P

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10.
And last but not least, Cloud's main reason to fight Sephiroth, it isn't to avenge his home town burning down, not to avenge his mother, not because it's what should be done--but above all else, to unfreeze Aerith's smile.

She is the main reason why Cloud chose to fight Sephiroth.

Cloud: "Even so, I have to fight. So, I can leave my past behind me. So I can be myself. And above all--- to unfreeze her smile." -Dismantled
 
 
 
30 January 2011 @ 09:41 pm
 

WHEN DID CLOUD FALL IN LOVE WITH AERITH?

Though this is just my opinion, it is backed by quotes from the video game, books, etc. ALL quotes are provided and placed in center of page.

 

I believe Cloud knew he liked Aerith from the very beginning. When Cloud first met Aerith on the streets of Midgar, he spoke pretty sweetly of her. And I've yet to see Cloud speak this way for anyone else, especially Tifa.

Cloud: Here I met a flower girl.
She’s a girl with impressive eyes. She’s around my age, or elder by one or two years. But the innocent radiance in her eyes simply makes her suddenly look younger.
(snip)
Aerith: “Excuse me, what happened?”
She asked me the question, and then I bought a flower from her, which is rare in Midgar.
Maybe she’s pleased that the flower was sold, because the worried look on her face had vanished. If this smile costs only one gil, it is a good purchase. - FFVII DISMANTLED


To me, the fact that Cloud found her eyes "impressive" and that her smile was a "good purchase", tells me he liked *those* features about her. So I know at this time, although he didn't "know" her, he found attractive qualities about her and liked them.

Some can say Cloud liking those features about her can be interpreted as "love at first sight", I believe Cloud saw her as a beautiful woman, hence where the attraction started.

 

When they meet in the church I think this was when "love" washed over him. However, I do not think Cloud realized it yet.

When he first wakes up in her church, Cloud learns that the flower bed he crashed into belonged to Aerith and then he quickly leaps up and apologizes.

Cloud: "Flower bed... is this yours?"
(He stands up and brushes his clothes off.)
Cloud:"Sorry about that." - FFVII church scene


Since when does Cloud apologize to complete strangers?(at least on the first disc) Not only that, but for some reason, the man that took a child's school money and didn't stick around for his childhood friend, accepted a date as payment for his protection. Odd Cloud would do something like that. Makes you wonder why, doesn't it? Why was he able to say no to his childhood friend and force money as his payment to stick around but then meet a random flower girl(who he liked the eyes and smile of)and risk his life for her when all she had to pay him with was one date?

Aerith: "Then, get me out of here. Take me home."
Cloud:"OK, I'll do it... but it'll cost you."
Aerith:"Well then, let's see......"
"How about if I go out with you once?"
(Cloud makes an affirmative nod. He confronts the person.) -
FFVII Church scene



In my opinion, I think Cloud accepted the date as payment because he thought she was cute/attractive. After all, if he *wasn't* attracted to her, he *wouldn't* have accepted the date. Who accepts dates from people they aren't attracted to in some way or another? Cloud accepted the date because it's what HE wanted. If the date wasn't good enough for him, he would have said no. But he doesn't. As soon as the words leave Aerith's mouth Cloud immediately begins to act as her bodyguard and then continues to act as so until she dies. So, by this time, Cloud at least has an attraction to her romantically.

And then after they flee the church we see Cloud laugh for the first time; this is a great indicator of Cloud's growing attraction for this woman he just met.

Aerith:"Wait... Wait, I said!"
(She catches up, carefully, femininely judging each gap.)
Aerith: "Puff... wheeze..."
"Slow.... down.... Don't leave me...."
Cloud:"Funny..."
"I thought you were cut out to be in SOLDIER?"
Aerith: "Oh! You're terrible!"

(Cloud & Aerith laugh.) - FFVII Laughing scene


And honestly, what they said wasn't even funny.  It's more like they were flirting than anything else. And yes, I think it's very significant that the first time we see Cloud laugh is when he's with Aerith. Up until meeting Aerith, Cloud was a man unbound by principles or emotions.

How long did it take for Tifa to convince Cloud to stay and help? And then, he didn't even stay for free, either, he had to be paid to help out any further. Yet, he accepted a date as payment from a complete stranger, and we're supposed to buy that Cloud wasn't attracted to Aerith in some way at this point in time? Something doesn't add up there, huh?
 

Back at Aerith's house:

Aerith: "Cloud...."
(He turns to her.)
Aerith:"Good night."
(She goes downstairs.)
Cloud: "Oh, man..."
(Cloud goes to bed. He dreams, we presume.)


During this scene, Cloud recalls at this time that he thought his meeting with Aerith was amazing. I'd like to point out, that he thinks this to himself *after* he recalls a memory of his mother telling him to settle down and have a nice older girlfriend. The interesting thing here is that after Cloud recalls his mother's advise Cloud says to himself that his meeting with Aerith was amazing.


Cloud: It’s quite amazing.
Previously, I met a flowergirl, Aerith, at 5th Street of the Slum, and now I was received at her place.- FFVII DISMANTLED


Why would Cloud believe his meeting with Aerith was amazing if he wasn't growing fond of her? Does he ever say his meeting with anyone else is amazing? After he awakens he slips out of the house by himself because he doesn't want her to become his bodyguard rather than him being her bodyguard.
 

"Aerith declared that she’ll show me the way. But if I let her, it seems hard to tell who’s the bodyguard.
I’m gonna slip out of here. "- FFVII DISMANTLED


I've heard people claim that Cloud was "ditching" Aerith. But really, that's not the case at all. Cloud himself explains why he left. As Cloud heads to sector seven by himself, he gets caught by Aerith. He tells her;

Cloud: "How could I ask you to go along when I knew it would be dangerous?"

This line indicates that Cloud was worried about her well-being, meaning he didn't want her to get hurt. And again, I've gotta point out, when did Cloud develop this kind of way of thinking? Personally, I think Cloud was concerned for her because he was starting to like her not only as a friend but as a woman he could have feelings for. And I think the start of his feelings are shown very clearly in this scene.

After Aerith helps him to sector 7 Cloud, once again, asks if she'll be all right.

Aerith:"The gate to Sector 7's in there."
Cloud :"Thanks. I guess this is goodbye. You gonna be all right going home?"

Again, I think this is a great show of Cloud's developing feelings for her. When was Cloud ever concerned about ANYONE's well-being before Aerith? Previous to his meeting with Aerith, Cloud told people to "blow off" and that "he didn't care what their names were" because he only cared for the mission and his money... so why the change?

A little later in that same scene, if you choose to allow Aerith to come along, this happens;

Aerith:"I could do that. But won't I be in your way?"
Cloud:"What do you mean in the way?"

I'm not sure what Aerith was meaning here, but the main point is that Cloud wasn't feeling like she was in his way. He was letting her stick by his side, which I think is another sign of Cloud's developing feelings. If he was being forced to have her along, he would have thought she *was* in the way, but he didn't think that at all. In a matter of fact, Cloud's just worried about her and doesn't want her to get hurt.


Then during the whole honey bee inn mission, Cloud's pretty protective of her. He's only known her for two days, why so much concern and protectiveness of her?

Aerith: "Hey, this looks like the Don's mansion. I'll go take a look. I'll tell Tifa about you."
Cloud:"No!! You can't!!"
Aerith: "Why?"
Cloud:"You DO know... what kind of... place this is, don't you?"
(snip)
Cloud:"
But, I just can't let you go in alone... Oh, man......"


If Cloud wasn't growing a liking to her, why would he even care at this time? He's showing concern for her once again. And I bring it up because Cloud, before meeting Aerith, wasn't the type of man to care for others. Yet he's showing concern for Aerith even though she's a "stranger".

Then, after the whole fight scene in the Don's Mansion and after the plate falls, while Barret and Tifa are speaking Cloud just zones out and gets lost in the thought of Aerith.

Barret:"An' what about you?"
(Cloud looks up, still not turning.)
Cloud:"..........."
(He leaves the playground.)
Barret: "Yo!"
"Where's he think he's goin'?"
Tifa:"Oh! Aerith!"
Barret:"Oh yeah, that girl. What's up with her?"
Tifa:"...I don't really know...

Tifa even points out that Cloud was lost in thought... and that it was about Aerith. If Cloud didn't have feelings for her at this time, why was Aerith being captured having this much affect on Cloud? Especially, if we remember how Cloud previously treated people. As shown in DISMANTLED, Cloud says to himself that if only he hadn't gotten her involved in his battle with Shinra she wouldn't be in danger, he also says he has to "rescue her by all means!"


Cloud: If only she was not involved in this battle, between me and Shinra…..
Aerith’s mother told us that she’s a foster child. And because she’s the last survival of “the Ancents,” Shinra was after her since she’s little.
So far, it seemed the Turks had never tried to forcibly take her away in violent manner. They just persistently asked for her cooperation.
But, Shinra was entirely impetuous this time.
If Shinra changed the strategy all of a sudden, then no one can guarantee her safety.
I need to get in Shinra building.
I need to rescue her……by all means!
- FFVII DISMANTLED


I find it very sweet that Cloud goes to rescue her after he realizes no one can guarantee her safety. If he wasn't growing close to her, then why so much concern? Also, I'd like to point out that at this time, Tifa was very displeased and jealous over how close Cloud had gotten to Aerith.


Tifa: in Don's Mansion
Hummm... I was in a complicated mood today—I was happy, but somehow, I felt annoyed at the same time.
(snip)
It’s just that...I was displeased at the way Cloud and another girl soon became good friends.
Well, Aerith is a very good girl, I was fond of her soon, too. No wonder…" - FFVII DISMANTLED


If Tifa can even see the quickening friendship between the two, it's safe to say Cloud was obviously showing some kind of feelings for Aerith otherwise Tifa wouldn't be jealous.


Gallantly busting into the Shinra HQ to save a girl he knew for two days seems pretty odd, especially for him to risk his own freedom and life for a girl he supposedly had no feelings for at this time. I'm not saying it was love *yet* but Cloud, for some reason, was growing attached to her in a lot of different ways. He was literally risking not only AVANACLHE's discovery, Tifa's freedom and life, but also his own freedom and life... all so he could go and save this woman he knew for two days, that he liked the smile and eyes of.

Why?

After Cloud saves Aerith from Hojo, Cloud rushes into the tube and kneels and helps her to her feet. Which is pretty sweet of him, if you ask me.  And honestly, it reminds me of when Squall saved Rinoa from the crystal-tube in FFVIII. The whole time they're there in the Shinra HQ, Cloud's main concern is Aerith. He tells the other AVALANCHE members to get Aerith out of there so she wouldn't get hurt. Again, it's this show of concern that makes me think this cold, emotionless, man began to like her.


Cloud's feelings start to get pretty obvious once they leave Midgar for the first time. The clearest indication of when Cloud began to realize his feelings was at Cosmo Canyon, when he wanted to tell her that he was there for her but was too shy to say anything.
This is the first and only time we ever see Cloud come so close to admitting some kind of feelings for a woman. It's very significant that after Aerith tells Cloud that she's all alone that Cloud wanted to tell her that HE was there for her. Cloud's not only trying to comfort her when she's feeling most hurt and alone, but he's straight up telling her that he will be there for her... if only he continued with his original thought.


Another significant scene for Cloud and Aerith's love is the date scene. (Aerith is default proven with DISMANTLED)

1. In Aerith's case, if you play the game normally, the partner that generally comes will be Aerith. ~FFVII Dismantled
QUOTES:
Aerith:"Cloud..."
         "I'm searching for you..."
Cloud : "............?"
Aerith:"I want to meet you."
Cloud : "But I'm right here."
Aerith:(I know, I know... what I mean is...)
         "I want to meet..... you."


This scene is one of the most significant scenes for Cloud and Aerith. Not only does it take place in the city of desire and not only does it end magically....

#111 The Planet's largest amusement park is run by Dio. Cloud and company visit this place many times in their battle. They meet Cait Sith here. A promised date that ends in a magical night. In the city of desire that floats above the sands, the light memory of the two people is asleep even now... " - FFVII DISMANTLed


But this scene also shows that Aerith has seen through to the real Cloud and wants to meet the real him. Something that is not only important for Cloud and Aerith's love, but also for the plot of FFVII.
 

"I'm looking for you."..."So you won't have a breakdown." - what Aerith told Cloud reveals many deep meanings. Aerith detected that the present Cloud is not the real him during their encounters. She knows it because of her mysterious, inherent ability. ~page 29, FFVII Ultimania Omega
 

When Aerith thinks of Cloud and Zack's similarities, she sees that the present Cloud is not the real Cloud. Her meaningful lines like, "I'm searching for you" and "I want to meet you" all mean that she has discovered the existence of the real Cloud, although he's not aware of it himself. ~page 31, FFVII Ultimania Omega


This scene, to me, also indicates one reason why Cloud so badly wants to meet Aerith. One of the most meaningful things Aerith's ever told Cloud was that she wants to meet him. And so, after she dies, Cloud returns that same wish. As we all know, Cloud is told by the planet that he can meet Aerith in the promised land. I bring this up because, that date scene says a lot about Cloud wanting to meet Aerith, too. Them wanting to meet each other is a mutual wish they both yearn for.

Then the dream scene between Cloud and Aerith;

After Cloud apologizes for hurting her, Aerith tells him to not worry about it to which Cloud replies by saying;


Aerith:"Don't worry about it."
Cloud
:"...I can't help it..."

He can't help but worry about the fact that he hurt her? To me, that is incredibly romantic. Then, after she tells him about what she's going to do, Cloud says "Aerith?" as if he's not accepting what she was saying. And once she starts to run he tries to follow. He began to chase after her before he knew that Sephiroth was going to go after her. It's like he just didn't want her to leave his side. And right when she disappears, Cloud outstretches his hand towards her--which is very romantic. It shows he wanted her to stay by his side and it shows his desperation to try and follow her just because he didn't want her to leave.

Maiden of the Planet says that Cloud's mind shattered after she left.


When she left her companions and headed for the Forgotten City, Cloud's heart was like an egg that was on the verge of cracking open. It wasn't going to crack open like the way an egg hatched but, as if only the yolk was going to seep out of it. It was as if his mind was going to shatter. She wanted to comfort him. If she wasn't the last survivor of the Cetra she probably would have done so without a doubt.
However...

That scene, had a huge impact on Cloud, and it conveyed a lot of romance between them. Why would his mind and heart shatter just at her simply leaving if he wasn't in love with her? 

And now, we arrive at Aerith's death scene...

As seen in that scene Cloud declares to Sephiroth that his "stupid plan" of destroying the world and the "cycle of nature" didn't mean anything now that Aerith was gone...

Cloud: "...Shut up."
(He bows his head closer to Aerith, trembling. He abruptly looks up to
Sephiroth.)

Cloud:"The cycle of nature and your stupid plan don't mean a thing."
(He slowly turns his head back to Aerith's sleeping face.)
Cloud:"
Aerith is gone."
         "Aerith will no longer talk, no longer laugh, cry...... or get
angry......"

(He holds her body closer to his and bows his head forward)
Cloud;"What about us...... what are WE supposed to do?"
(
He gently rests her on the floor.)
Cloud:"What about my pain?"
 (He trembles.)
Cloud:"My fingers are tingling.
         My mouth is dry.
         My eyes are burning!"


So, after Aerith died in his arms, Sephiroth's stupid plan of of destroying the planet and killing everyone on it(including Tifa) didn't matter to Cloud because Aerith was gone. Because Aerith would no longer laugh, cry, or get angry.
 

Further into her Death...


There's a quote that shows Cloud asking himself "why did Aerith have to die?"  To me, this shows Cloud was in so much pain that he would have preferred anyone over her being taken. I know that can sound harsh, but, Cloud loves Aerith. I guess someone can say that is irrational but it's human. And Cloud was in pain from losing the woman he loved... At this point, all Cloud wanted was for Aerith to be back with him... alive.

Cloud: "Aerith died. Right in front of my eyes... I couldn't stop Sephiroth. She was in my reach, and all I could do was stand there and watch as his sword ran through her.
Aerith used to smile like a flower, all the time... But, Aerith won't smile anymore. I won't ever hear her innocent laugh again.
What did she do?
Why did Aerith have to die?
What am I supposed to do about this anger, it's  endlessly boiling and burning up my body.
But at the same time, I was afraid. Like a chill coming from the core of my body.

When I found Aerith there, offering up some prayer, what did I try to do? If my friends hadn't stopped me at that moment, I would have struck my sword down on Aerith. It was something separate from my own will... it was like when I gave Sephiroth the Black Materia---Who am I? I'm EX-SOLDIER Cloud... right?
Tell me, Aerith---" - FFVII DISMANTLED


In that paragraph we have Cloud speaking of Aerith's smile and her ''innocent" laugh and how he'll never be able to hear or see either of those features of Aerith ever again. He's remembering details of her and missing them, why would he remember those details unless he loved them about her? The fact that he's showing the pain of missing her smile and her innocent laugh is more than enough to prove how madly and deeply Cloud was in love with her. And, when Cloud doubted who he was, who did he ask to tell him who he was? Aerith. Of everyone around, including Tifa, Cloud asked Aerith who he was when she had already died.

And then, there's Cloud's sole reason to fight against Sephiroth. Above Sephiroth killing his mother, above Sephiroth hurting Tifa, above all else, Cloud was fighting to unfreeze Aerith's smile.