YMMV: The Fifth Act


  • Better Than Canon: A lot of reviewers prefer this fic than what happened in canon.
  • Fandom-Specific Plot: Cloud traveling to the past and joining SOLDIER are a dime a dozen story amongst the fandom. The difference in this story, is that Cloud doesn't intend to save Sephiroth. He intends to kill him throughout the story and saving him and the other Soldiers was an accident. He also doesn't replace his past self or is reborn as his past self. His past self is a separate character that he interacts with.
    • Another popular concept is that Cloud's unknown father is President Shinra due to his resemblance to Rufus Shinra and Lazard.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Why did Kunsel become Cloud's friend? Kunsel is the only person that Cloud didn't know in the original timeline and thus the only person Cloud wouldn't have any bias against.
    • Not so much Fridge Brilliance, it's mentioned in-story that Cloud feels comfortable around Kunsel because other than flashes from Zack, he has no baggage related to him.
  • Fridge Horror: Think of all the friends Cloud left behind in his time...Since Hojo confirms that time-traveling makes a new timeline and doesn't actually cause one to change the past, it means that Cloud just disappears and is never seen again to his friends.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Cloud's assured that Mayor Lockhart is only anxious about Cloud's good looks and that he's afraid Cloud will "leave a trail of bastards behind [him]". Guess what Cloud's father did?
  • Ho Yay: Between Future!Cloud and Genesis. Genesis is very reverent of Cloud and willing to give Cloud the benefit of the doubt despite Cloud's shifty behavior and open threats against his friend, Sephiroth. When Genesis is narrating, he constantly gives Cloud compliments in his internal monologue.
    • Also plenty between Future!Cloud and Sephiroth.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Loads of readers found Genesis a ton more likeable in this fanfic than in canon, after Cloud prevents him from Jumping Off the Slippery Slope via curing him. Even his constant quoting of "Loveless" is used rather tastefully, particularly with how the various quotes prove relevant to the various scenarios the characters end up in.
  • Tear Jerker: How alone Cloud is. Tseng even notes that "there's something sad about ... a phone filled with numbers to nowhere".