CloTi nonsense: "Aerith never knew 'the real Cloud', so she can't really love Cloud for who he is".

Cloud may have confused some of his memories with Zack, but he did not "become" Zack. In fact, Zack and Cloud are exact opposites
(Zack was a "ladies man", very outgoing; Cloud is introverted and cold). So, I don't get how Aerith didn't get to know the "real" Cloud,
when he was there all along. The only memories Cloud confused with Zack's are the memories regarding SOLDIER. Cloud never "became"
Zack. You want proof? I got it....

Due to the influence of the Jenova cells implanted in his body he acted out a false persona, but with the support of his friends he regains his
true self and grows as a person. (
FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, Cloud's profile)

This statement says nothing about Cloud becoming an entirely different person. He merely acted out a false persona (the definition of
"persona" being
"the mask or facade presented to satisfy the demands of the situation or the environment and not representing the inner
personality of the individual"
), putting up a cool front to cover up his own inner weaknesses. However, Cloud's true personality was there
all along.

In the section of Cloud's profile that covers
Crisis Core, all it says is that Cloud imitated Zack's personality. Once again, it is confirmed that
Cloud was merely acting out a false personality as a mask to hide behind. Cloud idolized Zack and promised a dying Zack that he would live
out both their lives. However, Cloud acts
nothing like Zack. Cloud imitates Zack's cocky attitude as a First Class SOLDIER and even learns
some of Zack's moves and gestures. However, that is where the similarities end. Cloud is as cold and condescending toward others as Zack
was carefree and warm. And you were saying Cloud "became" Zack where?

The origin of the saying "not interested". In the scene when the young Cloud explains his mental state by saying, "I used to think people
around me were foolish", surprisingly, he shows the posture of shrugging his shoulders. If we consider this, the part of his coolness that
keeps him away from the surroundings and the part of his asserting "not interested" all have nothing to do with the influence of Jenova
cells, they belong to the real Cloud's personality. (
FFVII Ultimania Omega, p. 180)

Yeah, this is for all the idiots who are claiming that, not only did Cloud "become" Zack, he was controlled entirely by Jenova during his time
with Aerith. Honestly, that argument made about as much sense as a cat flap in an elephant house anyways.
If Cloud was Zack all along
and was controlled by Jenova, wouldn't he have become an
entirely different person after the Lifestream event, where, according to you
lot, he became his true self again? And, yet, that doesn't happen, does it? Actually, Cloud stays exactly the same, doesn't he? The only
difference is that we now know that Cloud was never a member of SOLDIER. Otherwise, Cloud is still the same introverted, quiet loner
that he was before.  

After developing his personality by using Zack, who has cheerful characteristics, his memory as the base, Cloud still remained the part of
coolness. (
FFVII Ultimania Omega, p. 180)

In other words, even though Cloud used some of Zack's personality as a basis for his new persona, Cloud's true character and personality
show through in his "coolness" and the fact that he isn't cheerful like Zack.

Aerith's feelings for Cloud:

Even though Aerith perceived that Cloud had lost sight of his true self, she still has great affection for him. (FFVII 10th Anniversary
Ultimania
, Aerith's profile)

Although in the beginning, Aerith felt close to Cloud because he behaves like Zack,
her interest in Cloud himself grows and is attracted
to him
. (FFVII Ultimania Omega, p. 31)

Aerith, who was confirmed in the FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania as being able to "see" inside the minds of others, knew that Cloud
was hiding behind a facade. Nevertheless, she grew to love him anyways. And there were times that Aerith
did catch a glimpse behind the
mask Cloud presented to the world....

"So you won't have a breakdown..." Aerith appears in Cloud's dream, she seems to console him with such advice. This line can infer that
Aerith has seen through the essence of Cloud
. (FFVII Ultimania Omega)

"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
. (FFVII
Ultimania Omega
, p. 29)

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
. (FFVII Ultimania Omega, p. 31)

Also, in the official novella, Maiden of the Planet, Aerith is the one to guide Tifa into Cloud's subconscious mind. Aerith is there the whole
time watching Cloud reconstruct his true identity. Finally, Aerith was able to meet the "real" Cloud and admitted that she was happy.

She also told Zack that she preferred Cloud's simplistic awkwardness to his [Zack's] flirtatiousness. So, apparently, getting to know the
"real" Cloud didn't affect Aerith's feelings for him at all. I hardly expected anything different considering how Aerith also recalled Cloud's
behaviors and mannerisms perfectly in
MotP, behaviors and mannerisms that were strictly Cloud's, not Zack's. Truly, Aerith knew the
"real" Cloud all along, she just knew he was hiding behind a false front, thus her statement "I want to meet... you".  

Besides, if Aerith didn't know the "real" Cloud, Tifa sure didn't either. She and Cloud were little more than strangers as children. Tifa herself
stated this. In fact, Tifa didn't really start getting to know Cloud until he joined AVALANCHE many years later, right about the time he met
Aerith. So, what applies to Aerith applies to Tifa as well.

Confirmation....

A close friend as well as rival?
The complicated emotions she feels towards Aerith.

Both of them share feelings for CloudTifa was close to Aerith, who can also be called a love rival. With that point in mind, they
were also good friends. Nevertheless, it is not hard to imagine that she carries complex feelings as a woman toward Aerith, who had built
up a special bond with Cloud that was different from Tifa’s.

Tifa’s complicated feelings continue even in AC, two years after Aerith had departed the world. This was due to the fact that Cloud,
succumbing to the notion that Aerith’s death was his fault and condemning himself, construed that Denzel was “the child which Aerith
brought here” and took care of him. In addition, Cloud had also gone away to the church that Aerith had been in. The thing which she is
unable to hide in her irritation towards Cloud is the fact that he isn’t merely dragging the past around, but because that reason might perhaps
be related to Aerith. (
FFVII 10th Anniversary Ultimania, Tifa's profile)

As confirmed, both Aerith and Tifa have feelings for Cloud. It is also stated that Aerith can be considered a love rival by Tifa. Obviously,
this means that she bore the same feelings for Cloud as Tifa did.

Despite his cold behavior in several scenes, Cloud is essentially popular with members of the opposite sex. In addition to FFVII’s
heroines Tifa and Aerith both having feelings for him
, AVALANCHE’s Jessie and young Priscilla in Junon both also fall for Cloud soon
after they meet him. Even though it’s the pitiable aspects of Cloud that stand out, perhaps weaknesses such as those also win over a
woman’s heart.

[FFVII]
Both Aerith, who is forthright, and Tifa, who is demure, have feelings for Cloud but he is none the wiser to them. (FFVII
10th Anniversary Ultimania
, Cloud's profile)

Once again, we have another confirmation that Aerith did indeed love Cloud, in the same manner that Tifa did.

[Aerith] seems more interested in the deepening love triangle between herself, Cloud and Tifa. (FFVII game manual, Aerith's profile)

A love triangle is defined as "a situation where two people both love a third person". Therefore, the idea of a love triangle means that both
Aerith and Tifa love Cloud,
not that Cloud loves both Aerith and Tifa. So, by the very game manual itself, we have confirmation of Aerith's
feelings.

More indisputable truth about Aerith's feelings for Cloud:

She loved him [Cloud] much more than her first love. (Maiden of the Planet)

Cloud was her friend, her beloved (
koibito) — a symbol of what was important to her, and someone to be protected. (Case of Lifestream:
White
)
The Real Cloud