Ok so I had another thought about Zerith and it sort of broke my heart a little. Ok ok so we know Aerith has a watery theme in FF7 compilation (including the original game itself)
When Aerith dies she sinks into a lake. But, before that in CC there is a scene that occurs that was commented on in an Ultimania.
In Scene 09-02, there is a section where Zack is standing on water and looking up at a white feather floating down from a blue sky. When we asked the development staff about their intentions for the direction in this scene, we received the following response.
“Even though he succeeded Angeal’s will, Zack finds himself not only unable to help anyone but also confined in Nibelheim, and is racked by a sense of despair and powerlessness. Angeal gets him back on track, and Zack decides to rise up from it again. This decision is represented by the mental image at the start of chapter 9.
The blue sky symbolises Zack, the white feather Angeal, and the water Aerith.
As with its use in the logo of ‘CC’, the blue sky symbolises Zack, the ideal SOLDIER 1st class envisioned in “FFVII”. This is the image of Zack at his best and complete. If you pull back a bit, you could say it symbolises ideals, goals, dreams.
The white feature, as well as being a symbol for Angeal, is also a symbol for ‘wings’. The “wings” which cross the ‘blue sky’ is Angeal, and it also includes the hint that in order to reach those heights, dreams, he needs to overcome many difficulties.
The ‘water’ which reflects and envelopes the ‘blue sky’ symbolises Aerith. From the interpretation that when Aerith hears the voice of the planet, she is accessing the Lifestream, we have the image of Aerith’s consciousness travelling through the water, which is reminiscent of the Lifestream. Or it is a symbol of the Lifestream itself, something like the planet’s will.
By showing the connection between these three elements, it hints at the story as a whole.” -Crisis Core keyword Collection.
Aerith reflects and envelopes Zack. But not stopping there, when Zack dies it’s raining.
Now here is what I find tragic, Zack is the blue sky and Aerith is the water, and when Zack is slipping away it begins to rain and it is the rain that has Aerith walk over and look up at the sky.
Aerith then puts her hands together to pray.
You know what makes this absolutely depressing? How absolutely horrifying?
Aerith can call down healing rain, the great gospel, and there she is in CC praying in the rain. She feels Zack life’s slipping away. All she can do is to pray, to PLEASE have him survive, to please heal his wounds.
Then Aerith gasps and looks up to the sky.
The camera zooms out to Zack’s eye. The yes “the color of the sky”
And Zack….Zack looks at the sky.
The same sky Aerith is looking at. Zack is the sky, Aerith is the water, the rain that could not heal him and Aerith’s reluctance to elaborate on her relationship with Zack in FF7.
They were both looking at the same sky as Zack’s life slipped away. They were both being pelted by the same water as Zack’s life slipped away.
Maybe one of the reasons for Aerith’s behavior in FF7 is that she wanted to save Zack. She knew he was slipping away, and so she tried to, she prayed, she asked the planet not to take him back yet. Not yet. But her prayer was not answered.
Zack died on the outskirts of Midgar, so close to her, and yet still so far away. It’s no wonder why Aerith doesn’t want to think about the possibility of him being dead in FF7.
Aerith can’t help but speak about Zack in FF7, but at the same time it hurts her, because she doesn’t want to acknowledge the truth. He died, and maybe she feels a form of guilt, maybe she partly blames herself. Maybe she curses her cetra powers more. Maybe she could have saved him. All those thoughts just buzzing in her head. The thoughts she doesn’t want to think. So she pushes them out of her mind. She denies. He’s alive somewhere. He is. He’s living peacefully.
He did not die in a wasteland miles from her. He’s ok. He’s fine. He’s with another woman. Maybe he’ll come back. Holding out hope, she’s trying so hard to just keep hoping that he will return to her.
But he’s dead, and who knows what kind of psychological trauma that did to her.