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Better Boots

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They hadn’t exactly gotten to the point where they were showing up on each other’s  doorstep, sure.  Zack supposed that was kind of unconventional and  Angeal was probably the only First who would allow that sort of thing, but he  kind of needed some guidance and Angeal was out on a mission.  Plus, Sephiroth did say (if maybe not in so many words) that he could be reached if needed, right?

Letting out a deep sigh through his bangs, Zack approached the door and made his presence known with the buzzer.  Once.  Then twice, after counting to 60, maybe a little fast.  That seemed… odd.  It wasn’t that late, and he knew the First was off duty.  He buzzed again, forcing himself to count more slowly, but even pressing his ear against the admittedly decently soundproof door revealed nothing.  Was something wrong?

Overrides were no-nos.  Kunsel had taught him that.

Granted Kunsel was also the one who’d taught him how to override door locks, so… that was something to work out later.  It kind of seemed more important to get in and look around, feeling a little worry at the dark living room and kitchen, heading slowly down the hallway that mirrored Angeal’s quarters, and–

There was one light on.  In Sephiroth’s bedroom.  And it cast just the perfect amount of right on him to get all the details burned into the younger man’s mind before he would no doubt meet his inevitable end.  Sephiroth–the Sephiroth– was standing in front of a full-length mirror in… well, a corset.  A very nice  corset; overbust, but made for men by the look of the cups, cinching his waist  and ending just above his hips, black brocade with silver filigrees and tiny hook closures all along the front seam.  They lead Zack’s eyes down even before he had a chance to  think about it, the satin panties leaving little to the imagination, but the sheer black hosiery lead down to–

“Huh.”  The younger SOLDIER hadn’t really realized he’d said anything.

Sephiroth, still in the process of realizing that there was someone uninvited in his quarters, and that said someone was Zack Fair, who had absolutely no idea about this little experiment, nor did anyone else before that moment in time,  blanched impossibly paler, then began to flush with embarrassment.  No one was meant to see, that was why he had a lock, halfway between throwing the other man out physically and  simply slinking away into the closet.  (Oh wasn’t that a laugh.)

Zack seemed to realize how utterly uncomfortable Sephiroth looked in that moment, holding up both hands and trying to explain, “Not judging, man!  Your, just–  Those heels are bad.”

A little numb, the First slowly stared down at the red boots, rising just above his ankles and elevating his heels a  good three inches off the floor.  He was a little too stunned to do much more than swallow for the sake of his dry throat, then press, “No?”

Shaking his head, the younger SOLDIER confirmed, “Nah, the boots don’t really…  go with it, y'know?  But I’ve got a solution!”

Which lead to a long blink.  "You do.  A solution.“

With a laugh, Zack insisted,  ”Yes, ye of little faith.  Give me a minute.  I’ll, uh.  Lock the door on my way out.“  It seemed it was his turn to blush before excusing himself, running off to wherever it was he was going.

Sephiroth sat on his bed.  Staring past the mirror on the inside of his closet door and simply… trying to figure out what had just happened.  Zack knew.   Zack knew a horrible secret that would further make him different, apart, shunned and considered not good enough.  Beneath.  Lower.

And yet he hadn’t looked disgusted, had he?  If anything, he… was surprised.  But not upset.

It didn’t make sense.   Maybe about as much sense as a very masculine man deciding to experiment with lingerie.  Which he was probably going to have to get rid of, after that, never to be seen or spoken of again.   Then to figure out how to keep Zack from  talking.  His life, his career, all of it could have been destroyed by him giving in to the curiosities he had–

"Here we go.”  Zack’s  cheerful voice got a slight jump out of the older man, but he graciously ignored it in favor of handing over some sleek satin-sheen black boots.  "They go a little below the knee.  Might not be perfect, but I think they’ll look  better.  And they’re about your size.“

Staring down at the boots handed to him, the numbness slowly flowed out of Sephiroth, leaving confusion behind.   "These are too big to be yours…”

“Oh, uh.”  Rubbing the back of his  head and not terribly subtly looking away, the younger man admitted, “They’re Angeal’s.  I’m sure he won’t mind; they’re a little tight in the calves for him.”

Angeal’s.  He..?  And that was why Zack felt it was…  alright?  Not horrifying, in any case?  His mind caught up slowly, not really  sure he could identify all of the emotions sweeping through him.  That was…  better.  It was better, but…  "What… were you here for in the first  place?“

"Oh, I…”  Still making no attempt at eye contact, Zack coughed  quietly.  "I was gonna ask if you used mascara.  And what kind.“

Lips  pressed together for a moment, Sephiroth searched for any hint of joking.   Teasing, cruel or otherwise.  He found none.  "I don’t, personally.”

Unfair, man.”  Zack protested Sephiroth’s naturally perfect  eyelashes.

Leading him to snort.  "Genesis, on the other hand… I know what he uses.“