|Wutai War: 1st Year
Author: SarissaDiablo PM
The war starts, and the prototype's for SOLDIER are released. What will the three siblings, Cloud, Storm, and Sephiroth learn about themselves, as they fight in a war they don't want any part of? Now complete! Warning: M for a reason.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance/Angst - Cloud S. & Sephiroth - Chapters: 10 - Words: 106,324 - Reviews: 6 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 05-14-09 - Published: 02-19-09 - Status: Complete - id: 4874481
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Last chapter in this one. The next installment, if you will, will be the 2nd and 3rd year, not just one. I love how one random idea turns into something like this. :D If you like, review! Thanks for reading!! The song is Scars by Papa Roach
"You are so fucking stupid," Cloud growled into Tseng's face, his eyes glowing with his annoyance. Tseng only stared back with a blank face, trying not to breath to heavily. He knew some of his ribs had been broken when Cloud slammed him into the elevator wall, and he didn't need to break anything else.
"Why am I stupid?" he asked, and Cloud snarled, hitting the stop button on the elevator. Tseng just wanted, well, whatever was happening to end. It was midnight, and he was tired. For six months he had been refusing Storm and Reno both, knowing that the girl wasn't recovered from what she went though yet. He refused Reno because it felt odd having the red head in his bed without Storm.
"Storm is a big girl, Tseng," Cloud said lowly, snapping him out of his hormonal thoughts. "She has already asked you to resume your relationship, and you've been refusing. Why? Do you think she is still fragile?"
"Yes," he answered immediately, and knew it was wrong when Cloud's eyes flared brighter, before dimming again.
"Do you realize what yours, and Vincent's refusals have been doing to her?" Cloud whispered hoarsely, his eyes beginning to shine with something other then anger. "She has watched you both for this long, and respected your wishes for you to be the one to initiate it. What do you think that is doing to her? She knows both of you are attracted to her, and have been from the very beginning. Then all of the shit with Wutai happened, and she comes back mentally fragile, and scarred. Suddenly, neither one of you want to be in her bed, or really, in her life at all." Tseng opened his mouth to say something, but closed it when Cloud slapped his palms onto the glass next to his head. "You began volunteering for more missions, and dragged Vincent along with you. You found the mole, good job. You've brought more people into the Turks, hooray. Do you not realize that none of that matters? If you continue to break her heart like you two have been, none of it will matter."
"How do you know this for sure?" Tseng whispered, and Cloud just smiled his sad, condescending smile, hitting the button to begin the elevator.
"I am her twin, Commander," he said, backing up and leaning against the opposite wall. "I notice things about her that she probably doesn't, and vice versa. She would never admit to being hurt by the way the two of you have acted, and probably doesn't even realize it hurts her. She believes that all she wants is the two of you in her bed, but that isn't all she wants. In essence, the two of you rejected her, and with Reno gone on his undercover mission with Rude, she doesn't even have a friend to turn to anymore. All she wants is friends, Tseng, and neither of you are giving that to her." The bell dinged to announce they were at the blonds apartment, and Cloud walked out the door without another word, leaving Tseng with much to think about. First though, he needed to find Vincent.
"So how did it go?" Sephiroth asked, braiding his still wet hair, as he watched his lover settle onto the couch with a cup of hot tea. Cloud shrugged, his eyes stormy as he stared out into the night.
"As well as expected, I guess," he said, all the emotions he had been hiding coming to the surface now that he was around Sephiroth. His eyes filled with tears, and sorrow, his muscles beginning to shake slightly with the effort of not crying. "I'm scared for her, Seph." Sephiroth frowned, his hands stilling at the end of the braid. He wasn't used to the blond sounding so uncertain, let alone saying he was scared for their sister.
"She has survived much, Cloud," Sephiroth said, walking over and folding his upper body over his lovers, trying to ease the fine tremble in the toned muscles. "She can survive this."
"It's not the same, and we both know it," Cloud whispered, the fought tears finally beginning to fall, though his voice remained mostly steady. "She's drawing into herself more and more, and I'm afraid of what will happen if those two keep doing what their doing. At this point, I think their the only ones who can get past her shell." Sephiroth sighed, closing his eyes, inhaling the warm, woodsy smell that was uniquely Cloud.
"She always, and will always have us," he said, smiling slightly when Cloud nodded immediately. Then he sobered, bringing the cup to his lips as he tried finding the right way to put his thoughts into words.
"She needs other people though," Cloud said quietly, brushing away the tears before he gently kissed the arms across his chest. "She's not like us, and never has been. She was always the one trying to make friends with the people in the lab, until she realized that anyone who was nice to us was killed, sent away, or became experiments themselves. We have always been content with each other, but there was always a loneliness with her, even around us. She has Reno now, who is pretty much only a friend, and those in SOLDIER, but those are still her underlings, not really friends. Then there's Vincent and Tseng. Not only has Tseng been her lover, but he was her friend. Vincent and her haven't done anything, but what they went through together in Wutai brought them closer then friends. Then the two of them turned their backs on her as soon as they got back. I'm afraid," he stopped, taking a deep breath, and Sephiroth wasn't entirely sure he wanted his lover to finish the thought. Though he was sure what it was going to be, "that if they don't do something soon, she may complete her shell, and lose was sanity she managed to gain back." The last words were whispered, and Sephiroth slid his body over the edge of the couch, until he was sitting in Clouds lap. He grasped his face gently, meeting the weary blue eyes.
"It's not only her your worried about, is it?" he asked quietly, and for a moment surprise shone in the blue, before being covered by sad amusement.
"I can't get anything past you, can I?" Cloud muttered, grinning slightly when Sephiroth shook his head, pressing a kiss to his lips. He drew back, and the grin turned wicked at the half-lidded gaze of green, before turning serious once again. "If she does drop into that blackness, and ceases to care for humanity, then what will happen? Not only to us, but to the Planet and its people as a whole? She is the most powerful out of us, and only Vincent is anywhere close, and I don't think he really cares what happens to the Planet, as long as Storm is safe." They both thought about it for a moment, the horror of the picture created in their heads slowly filling their eyes. To have Storm become a true, heartless, insane 1st Class SOLDIER, with an ex-Turk, who holds a demon inside of him, more then willing, and happy to do anything said SOLDIER wishes, unleashed on the Planet?
"Would we kill her, or join her?" Sephiroth whispered, and Cloud smiled slightly, finishing his tea before leaning forward and setting it on the table, Sephiroth easily balancing himself as he did. They both settled into the couch more firmly, their arms wrapped around each other as they thought.
"Considering everything we have gone through, and in particularly Storm, I wouldn't stop her," Cloud said very quietly, his eyes staring blindly.
"I couldn't let her do it," Sephiroth said coldly, brining Cloud out of his daze, making him look up.
"What?" Cloud asked, his voice higher with shock. Sephiroth shook his head in annoyance, and stood, walking over to the window and staring out into the cold night sky. He spoke without looking back.
"Think of our plan, Cloud. She wants to save the Planet and its people, not destroy it. Storm would never forgive us, in this life or the next, if we let her destroy the very things were fighting to protect. She has been our mother, our teacher, and everything she taught us, about life, would be for nothing if we let her destroy the Planet." He finally looked over his shoulder, rubbing his arms self-consciously as he met Cloud's gaze. It was cold, but pain still lurked behind the blue gaze.
"That means," Cloud said softly, never allowing his eyes to waver from the emerald ones staring at him, with the hope that he would agree. He couldn't. "That we'll be on opposite sides, my love. You're my brother, my lover, and fellow warrior. But she is my twin, and I can understand her feelings all to well. You never felt the constant pain that she was in, while in Wutai. You never got the backlash of emotions from the things Hojo did to us." He smiled, and it was sad, and somewhat condescending, as though Sephiroth was being naive. "I know why she didn't go to Hojo until after I was asleep. If I had been awake, I would have felt everything she was going through, and would have known. I will be right there by her side, should she choose to destroy this Planet. I could do no less, because I owe her. More then she knows, I think."
"You would go against me," Sephiroth said, his voice laced with enough scorn that Cloud winced slightly. "Against everything we believe in?" Cloud met his eyes calmly, still smiling.
"For her, yes, I would," he said, making Sephiroth blink, and turn back to the windows. "Are you telling me, after everything she had done for us, you would be any different?" The silence stretched, as green eyes narrowed contemplatively. Finally, tension eased from the lithe body, and a small smile stretched across the pale lips.
"Everything she has done in her life, has been to protect us," he finally said, letting his arms fall to his sides, as he walked over and draped himself on the couch, his head in Cloud's lap. The blond began to unbraid the silver hair, letting the still wet strands coat his fingers as he worked them through. Sephiroth only closed his eyes in contentment, but when they opened again to slits, there was a soft glow coming through the thick lashes. "If it truly came down to that, then yes, I would stand with you. As you said, I could do no less, considering what she has done for me. Besides, I can't really say I am overly fond of the people on this rock." He laughed softly, evilly, and Cloud echoed it with his smile. The blond leaned down, placing a gentle kiss on his lips, but Sephiroth had other ideas. He reached up his hands, and buried them in the soft spikes, forcing the kiss to become deeper, more heated. Cloud willingly complied with the demands, since it had been a couple weeks since they had the chance to really be together. Between missions and dealing with an increasingly unstable sister, there really hadn't been time to be intimate.
Cloud lifted Sephiroth easily until he was straddling his lap, their lips never leaving each others. Slowly, Sephiroth unzipped the sweater Cloud was wearing, easing it off his body. Once it was gone, he hungrily pressed their naked upper bodies together, the heat of their skin jumping dramatically as they came in contact. Clouds hands settled on the slight flare of his hips, as his hands curled around the pale neck, their lips moving slowly over the others, teasing and tasting. Sephiroth pulled back first, smirking slightly at the half-lidded gaze of Cloud. Standing on the couch, he untied the drawstring of his pants, and slid them down his legs, shivering when Cloud let his hands smooth down the newly exposed expanse of smooth skin. He stepped off the couch, and pulled Cloud to his feet, gracefully falling to his knees as he finished undressing him. Not really caring, he threw the articles of clothing somewhere, pushing Cloud back so he lay on the couch. He grinned wickedly as Cloud watched him with a lazy smile, as he began kissing the insides of his thigh. He passed over Clouds erection, to a frustrated groan from the blond. He had planned this while in the shower, and all the preparation that went along with it. Straddling his hips again, he lowered himself onto the wide eyed blond, whose only response was to throw back his head, closing his eyes as he growled in pleasure.
Sephiroth sunk all the way down, his head falling back as he gasped in pleasure. Cloud grasped his hips, kneading them with his fingertips. He began to move in slow, unhurried movements, rocking his body up and down. Cloud didn't try to speed him up either, content with letting his lover take control. He relaxed and opened his eyes to mere slits, watching Sephiroth as he moved above him. He had always loved seeing Sephiroth move like this, and get lost in the sensations. His head was thrown back, his long silver hair brushing across Cloud's thighs in a gentle whisper. He was purring deep in his throat, his body having already taken on a sheen of pink, his mouth moist as he panted. He removed his fingers from his hips, and laced their fingers together, pulling him down so their upper bodies were pressed together. He began to move his hips, moving just as gently as Sephiroth pressed kisses to his neck and upper chest, their conjoined hands now being held above their heads. He smiled in wicked delight as Sephiroth moaned softly, when he snapped his hips up, driving hard into him.
"Like that?" he whispered, and licked his lips when Sephiroth nodded. He continued, and it wasn't long before they were both sweat soaked, nipping and kissing feverishly any skin they could find.
"Cloud," Sephiroth gasped out. "Right there." With a feral growl, Cloud maintained the rhythm and hardness, getting Sephiroth closer to a scream with each thrust. He felt his lovers body tighten as he bit hard into his shoulder, warmth spreading across their stomachs as he screamed into his skin. Once, twice, and Cloud followed, his back arching as he buried himself as far as he could go, his release shuddering through his body with a loud gasp and moan. Cloud collapsed into the couch, and Sephiroth relaxed against him, breathing heavily and with satisfied smiled on both faces. It was Sephiroth who was the first to move, gently lifting himself off, to shudders from both of them. He sat heavily between Cloud's legs, letting his head fall back against the fabric as he waiting for his heart to calm down.
"Now we both need showers," Cloud said in an amused voice, earning himself a glare from a barely open eyes. He shrugged slightly, and managed to lever himself up onto his elbows, grinning. As he stared at his lover, mouth open and body flushed with pleasure, he felt his groin twitch again in response. Grinning evilly, he sprung to his feet and swept Sephiroth into his arms, getting a small squeak of surprise. He walked into the bathroom, even as he was gently kissing his lover, both their bodies already hard again. It was going to be one of those nights, he thought with a grin.
Storm scowled at the shot glass in front of her, her body tingling pleasantly from the buzz she was getting. She never understood how she and Cloud could get drunk, but Sephiroth couldn't. She shrugged mentally, and ordered another round, glaring at the bartender when he tried making a pass at her, again. He was cute, sort of. Close cropped blond hair, liquid brown eyes, nice build. All she could see was black hair, black and red eyes, and a bodies so toned there was no fat left on them. Also, the scars from the battles they had seen. Growling to herself, she downed the shot, wincing at the burn in her throat, before slamming the glass back on the bar. A song came over the jukebox, and she paused, listening.
I tear my heart open, I sew myself shut,
My weaknesses is, that I care to much,
And my scars remind me, that the past is real
I tear my heart open, just to feel.
Closing her eyes, she let the song wash over her and through her addled brain, smiling slightly as the lyrics hit home. How very true, she thought, idly fingering the burn like scars around her wrists. Opening her eyes, she stared down at her arms, where the scars were mostly burns and the almost delicate, pale marks of a scalpel. They wound around, creating an odd pattern, because that was exactly what it was. The man who had used the scalpels on her arms, had told her it was a shame to mar such beautiful skin. He did, but he made it into a spiraling pattern from her wrists to her shoulders. The same pattern was on her legs, from her hips down, including the tops of her feet. He had taken great pleasure in making the cuts, then peeling her skin off. Shivering, she pushed the memories away as she pushed off the barstool. She didn't want to think of the time she spent with him. He had been Tseng's brother, and they had looked so much alike, they could have been twins. You never really know torture until its someone you care deeply about, doing it. No matter how many times she had reminded herself that it wasn't Tseng, the hallucinations and pain often tried telling her different. It didn't help that he had known of the resemblance, and had used it against her.
Shoving the thoughts forcefully away, again, the bartender walked over to her as she handed him her credit card, throwing Samaels cloak over her shoulders. She felt tears threaten as she stroked a hand down the fur, remembering the dry humor the cat once had. The man walked back, and she tucked the card into her back pocket, along with the key card for her house and the one for the apartment. She ignored his lustful looks as she walked out, not to steady on her feet.
She wandered for awhile, finally finding herself down a side alley, between a coffee shop and a boutique. From the shadows, a male figure appeared, and she could smell the violence and desire seeping from his every pore. She only stared at him with numb eyes as he looked her over, with the fur cloak, her ankle length hair, and the skimpy clothing. She could almost see his mind working as he put the pieces together. She obviously screamed money, and she couldn't find it in herself to care.
"Give me your money," he growled, and she did find it in her to smirk slightly.
"I don't have any," she said calmly, and he only stared at her.
"Fine, give me the cloak, and you can leave with your life," he said, his voice getting deeper with his anger. She surprised him, and herself by laughing, leaning against the wall when she couldn't find it inside her to stop. She knew her laughter sounded quite insane, but at this point, it was better then crumbling to the ground in tears.
"You don't get the cloak, guy," she said, wiping away the tears from her eyes. He was on her then, pressing her back against the wall, and laughter was wiped completely from her mind. It was replaced by a numbing blackness, and she only stared up at the hazy night sky, as he began to sloppily kiss her neck. Her arms fell limp at her sides, because she had no intention of fighting back. She just didn't care. Something warm sprayed across her face, and she blinked, knowing the smell and texture of fresh blood. She lowered her head, and found golden claws not a centimeter from her chest. What made her smile slightly, was the fact that the claws were going through the mans chest. He stared at her in wide eyed horror, until a single gunshot went through one temple and out the other, and the claws were ripped out of his body. He fell to the ground, and she watched curiously as the blood began to pool from his chest and head. It made a weird, scraggily pattern as it flowed over the stones and garbage.
"Storm?" Tseng said quietly, and not looking up from the blood, all he got was a hmmm? In reply. Tseng glanced at Vincent, worry clear in both eyes at the blank look she was giving the dead man. Vincent repressed the shudder of horror, as the clinical look in her eyes suddenly reminded him of Hojo, dissecting a particularly interesting bit of flesh. So, he reached out and slapped her. Hard.
She blinked, raising her eyes to the burning red ones that were glaring at her. Her hand raised automatically to brush her cheek, before falling. She looked between the two, wondering at the worry they both showed. Then everything hit her, and she felt sick, stumbling back to lean against the wall. She was about to let herself be raped, because she couldn't find it in herself to care what happened to her. She was the fucking Captain of SOLDIER, and she was going to let herself be raped. She pressed her hands to her mouth, feeling the alcohol in her stomach churn uneasily. Had she really been that far gone, that she wouldn't have fought back? She felt the sticky, drying saliva on her neck, and shuddered, wrapping her arms around her body and hugging herself. She knew she wouldn't have.
Tseng was startled at the abrupt change, from emotionless, numb Storm, to the insecure 15 yr old now before them. The two of them had watched her walk down the alley, Vincent unerringly leading them to her. Somehow, while in Wutai, they had exchanged blood. Neither of them really knew how it happened, but they had admitted that there were nights where they would be throw together back in their cell, both bloody and still bleeding. Nights like those they usually curled up around each other. All they knew now, was that they could sense vague emotions from the other, and find them no matter where they were. It worked in their favor that night. They had both watched, curious with what she would do when the man had appeared. It surprised them both when she did nothing, and when she had turned her head up to stare at the stars, in essence giving herself up to the man, it had been time to act. The completely lost, numb look in her eyes had chilled the two men to the marrow of their bones. Not even in Wutai, had Vincent seen such a look in her eyes. It had truly scared them both, as they realized how close they were to losing the Storm they both had come to know.
They moved forward as one, the months of training together showing itself when she collapsed to the ground, shaking in uncontrollable sobs. They knelt down next to her, heedless of the blood, as Vincent wrapped his arms around her from the left, Tseng from the right. They looked over her head at each other, as she clung to them both and cried, both of them wondering how much they had really fucked up. She wasn't fragile with the torture she had gone through, they were now realizing. She had become fragile because they had offered her friendship and more, then took it away because of their own screwed up thoughts of honor. The fragility they had seen, the reason why they had kept declining her offers, was of their own making. Kneeling there, the proud, arrogant, cold, Storm Strife sobbingly uncontrollably in their arms, made them both sick. They knew they were the reason she was like this, and they somehow had to find a way to fix it.
"I'm sorry," Tseng whispered, and tensed when the tears stopped instantly. He could feel her drawing into herself, and it was such an odd feeling since she was in his arms. It now felt as though she was a million miles away.
"Your sorry," she said quietly, her voice venomous. Their arms tightened, but she shoved them both away, knocking them onto their asses in the garbage strewn alley. Standing, wind began to form around her as her eyes began to glow, the look on her face frightening. "You both ignore me for six months, and all you have to say is your sorry?" Tseng stood slowly, staring right into her eyes with his own calm ones. He kept his gun out though, because he had not forgotten the promise he made her. With the look in her eyes, he was beginning to believe that he may have to keep his promise. Suddenly, her eyes went wide with shock as she was slammed forcefully against the wall behind her. The two men watched with wide-eyed shock, then understanding when the invisibility spell was lifted, and Adra could be seen with his two paws on her chest, keeping her pressed against the wall. Nicora was there too, her flaming tail lashing back and forth, her green, tri-colored eyes steady on the small female against the wall.
What is your problem? Adra asked calmly, and was obviously broadcasting his thoughts, because the men could "hear" him loud and clear. You bitched and moaned for months about how you wanted them back, and now that they came to you willingly, your going to push them away? Your being very stupid, mother. Her eyes went wide, before narrowing. She snarled at the cat, and he snarled back, startlingly both men with the eerie similarities between them.
"They ignored me for six months, and then expect to come back into my life with an I'm sorry?" she growled out, and Adra lifted a paw, and lightly smacked her across the face with it. She winced, since obviously a paw, from a cat that was almost as tall as she was, no matter how lightly used, still hurt.
You are being stupid, he said with iron behind his words. She blinked, her eyes narrowing as she opened her mouth to say something again, but Adra began to growl, shoving his nose right up against hers, and lifting his lips to show his formidable fangs. They are good men, even if their intentions these past six months have been a bit fucked up. They realized what they had been doing to you, and came here to apologize. What more do you want from them? Her jaw dropped open, as she tried to find something to say. Her eyes filled with tears, and she looked first at Tseng, then at Vincent. Closing her eyes, Adra dropped back to the ground, and she wrapped her arms around his strong neck, burying her face in his thick fur as he began to purr.
"I want them to hurt like I did," she whispered in Yit, knowing that only the cats understood.
Oh mother, Nicora said quietly, speaking only to them, walking over so Storm was pressed between both their chests. You'll have to let go of that if you want anything with them in the future.
"But for six months. Six months!" she whispered brokenly, her hands tightening into fists in the thick white fur. She didn't even care that she was speaking normally again, and with their enhanced hearing, both men could clearly hear what she was saying. "Neither one of them even spent the night. I didn't even want the sex most the time." She fought back another round of crying, and turned her head so she was looking at both men. She knew what was showing in her eyes. Her hurt, the loss of them both, pain from the feeling of being rejected. "I just wanted to be held. I only want someone there to chase away the nightmares. I get lonely, by myself at night." She let go of Adra, and took one, shaking step towards the men, away from the security of her cats. She was putting everything of hers on the line right now, and the tears continued to fall down her cheeks, warm against the biting wind in the alley. Her mind, her heart, her very self, she was putting in their hands. Her heart was fluttering wildly in fear. She didn't know what she would do if they rejected her, again.
"Storm," Vincent said quietly, and a chocked sob was ripped out of her as she began to collapse. They both moved forward, enfolding her in their arms, and this time, she let them. She let herself be enveloped by their strength, relying on them instead of herself. Her arms rose, one around each their necks as she let the tears come, not having the strength anymore to keep them suppressed. The edge that she had been balanced precariously on for months began to recede, her mental stability coming back with every tear that rolled down her face, with every whispered word from the two men.
When she finally raised her head, both cats were gone, the tears dry in her eyes. She gave them both a small smile, which they returned, and then she looked over to the dead man with a look of disgust.
"I can't believe I was about to let him touch me," she growled softly, shuddering in revulsion.
"I can't either, to be honest," Tseng said softly, and she turned her head to look at him. He only gave her calm eyes back, until she sighed, shaking her head in defeat.
"Ok, so I kinda fucked up with not telling you guys what was happening," she said crossly, and they both smirked at her, glad that her personality was coming back. There was still the undertone of darkness, but it would be a miracle indeed, if that went away completely.
"We knew something was wrong," Vincent began, looking with disgust at his bloodied claws. He always said it was a bitch to get it clean, since he couldn't remove the gauntlet. "We just didn't know we were the cause of it." He raised slightly amused eyes to hers, and she blushed, standing and dusting the worst of everything off her clothing and cloak.
"I was being stupid," she muttered, smiling sardonically as Adra's words came back to her. Oh yes, she was being stupid. She blinked when a palm cupped her cheek, and she looked curiously at Tseng.
"We were equally to blame, Storm," he said quietly, smiling. Hesitantly, a smile of her own came out, and she closed her eyes, letting herself lean into his hand. Another snuck underneath her cloak, settling on the heated skin on her bare shoulder. Opening her eyes, she gave Vincent the same smile, which he returned.
"We should go get clean," he said, then glanced at Tseng with an amused smile. "Well, we need to. Mr. Never-Gets-Dirty here is always clean." Tseng laughed softly, and the three walked out of the alley, leaving the man dead, in a pool of his own blood. They never looked back.
The conversation was light on the walk back, but by the time the three were at her door, each was wound tight with the sexual tension between them. She slid her key through the slot, and the lock clicked open. She pushed the door open, looking behind her as she continued their conversation.
"So when are Reno and Rude due back?" she asked, and Tseng grinned, following her with Vincent bringing up the rear.
"Their due to be back any day, actually," he said, as she walked to the light panel, hitting the buttons that would turn on the lights throughout the house. Reno and Rude had been undercover with a rebel group called Avalanche for the past three months. It seemed that they had the same agenda as Storm and her group, but they were going the violent route. The lights illuminated the dining room, with its small table and three seats, and she blinked in shocked surprise. Reno was sitting at the table, his red hair in disarray around him, and blood pooling on the floor underneath him. He was determinedly smoking a cigarette, and gave them a little wave with a bloody hand as the three stared at him in shock.
"Yo," he said hoarsely, and the three sprung into action. Vincent and Tseng went directly to him, while Storm speeded to her bedroom, grabbing a couple cure materia's, before racing back. When she got to the table, the two men already had Reno flat on the table, with his jacket and shirt off. Storm narrowed her eyes at what she was seeing. A slash went from his right armpit, across his chest, and curved around his left ribs, where it ended in a nasty stab wound. She growled, and placed one orb of materia against his chest, watching dispassionately as it began to glow, then slowly absorb into his body, the green flecks in the blue surrounding her pupil standing out in reflection.
"Where's Rude?" she asked, and Reno blinked at her, his own eyes glowing slightly because of the materia. He coughed, and blood began to seep from his mouth and down his chin. Growling even louder, she activated the second cure, pushing that into his body as well. She immersed herself in the spell, making sure that it cured the internal injuries before the superficial. When she was done, and his insides were as good as new, she opened her eyes, and glared down at him.
"Reno, where is Rude?" she asked harshly, and his eyes narrowed, pain filling them.
"He told me to keep going, yo," he whispered, swallowing convulsively. "They had found out who we were, and when we got to the meeting tonight, which was supposed to be where things were decided, they attacked. We got to the plate, but we were wounded before being able to make it back to the Tower. I was worse then Rude, so he told me to go ahead, he would hold them off. I didn't even have a chance to help him, yo. He went running back towards them, before I could do a damn thing. Stupid fool." Tears had filled his eyes, but Storm turned away. She flung off her cloak as she walked to the bedroom, and as soon as she entered the room, she began to strap on weapons. Her swords were first, then the daggers around her thighs. The vambraces came next, with a knife in each, her guns already at her hips. She slid her other daggers into her boots, before swiftly braiding her hair so it wouldn't get in the way, her face set in a stony mask. Pissed couldn't begin to describe the blinding rage that had overcome her. They dared to hurt someone she had given her protection to. Rude was a part of that protection, since he was Reno's partner, and best friend. She had sworn to herself that she would lose no one she had personally given her word to protect, and she never broke her word. First, she had to get fucking permission to destroy a building, and kill people within the city limits.
Walking back out, she ignored the stares of all three men, and pulled out her phone. First number was the Presidents. She didn't give a fuck that it was 5 in the morning, either. She also didn't care that she should have called Heidegger, him being the next up in the food chain. She also knew that if she went over his head to the President himself, Heidegger could do nothing to stop her. She planned to use every bit of her ruthless nature to get what she wanted. The phone picked up, and as soon as she heard it pressed to an ear, she began.
"Two Turks, Reno and Rude, were on an undercover mission, and they got found out. Reno made it to my house, and needs medical attention, though he is stable for now. Rude left his partner, to give him a chance to get back with the information. This is not me calling you to ask for your permission. This is Captain Storm Strife calling you to tell you that I am taking a small elite group of SOLDIER's with me, and we plan on retrieving Rude, and killing most of those involved. Either you allow it, or we go on our own. No matter what your decision, I wouldn't recommend getting in my way." There was complete silence after her deadly quiet rant, where she could hear his quickened heartbeat over the phone. He was terrified of her, and she smiled.
"Most?" came the quiet question, and her smile turned deadly.
"Yes Sir, most. I plan to bring a few guests back with me. Offer my hospitality. That sort of thing."
"Try not to destroy too much of the city," he said simply, before hanging up. She waited only a moment before hitting another button then send, putting it to her ear. Her eyes never left the wound across Reno's chest.
"Yea?" came a sleepy answer.
"Seph, you and Cloud get your asses up. Someone nearly killed Reno, and probably took Rude, or he's dead. We need to go find him."
"If we find the attackers first?" the very awake, anticipatory voice said. If it were possible, her eyes turned even darker.
"I want a few alive, but I don't give a shit about the rest."
"Good. We'll be there in 10 minutes." Another click, and then another number.
"Victor, grab Mike and bring your asses to my house. Bring as many weapons as you want. This is an order, Lieutenant."
"Yes Sir." She finally slipped the phone back into her pocket.
"Take him to the medical ward, get him healed," she said, blinking when he shoved himself into a sitting position, turning and facing her. His eyes were orbs of blue flame with the anger they expressed.
"You aren't fucking leaving me behind, yo," he said harshly, and she stopped, looking at him. Tseng and Vincent also looked to her, since in essence, it was her show. She took in the tenseness of his body, the stubborn set of his jaw. Turning on her heel, she walked into her bedroom, getting two vials of mako from the hidden cubbyhole in the closet, along with the syringe and clean needle. She walked back to Reno, and it wasn't until she was filling the needle with mako, that his eyes widened.
"If you tell anyone that I have mako here, I will rip out your tongue and shove it up your ass, understand?" she said with no expression, sliding the needle home in his arm and injecting him. He had barely opened his mouth to say something, when his back arched, his mouth open in a silent scream. Then he collapsed as blue seared across his chest, making the wound into a crusty scab. She frowned, only waiting a moment for him to quit twitching. She loaded the next vial of mako, and plunged the glowing blue into his arm. He did scream this time, softly, as he clenched her tablecloth in his hands. Then he was limp again, the same blue light racing over his chest, this time leaving behind a clean, pink scar.
"What is that shit?" a breathless Reno asked, as she gathered everything together. People should be arriving shortly.
"It's what me, Cloud, and Seph get," she said absently, walking away and putting the things back. Reno was standing at the edge of the table, though he was leaning on it, when she walked back. She threw him the black turtleneck she had grabbed at him. He caught it, looked down at his blood covered body and winced. There was a knock on the door though, so he slid it on with a curse, as she walked over and opened the door.
Victor and Mike, two Lieutenants in SOLDIER and also 1st Class, walked through the door, wearing more weaponry then humanly possible. Mark, a blond, blue eyed, square jawed picture of northern beauty, was draped with guns in holsters. He dumped them on the table with a shrug, revealing a tight black t-shit, gloves, black jeans tucked into black boots. Pistols were on his upper arms, his thighs, hips, and ribs. He was also sporting two shotguns crossed on his back. Victor was no different, except his were sharp, deadly things.
The large black man was draped much in the same as Mark, and just as equally adorned with weapons. A set of throwing knives were tucked into each boot top, as well as around his forearms. He had daggers strapped to his upper arms, thighs, and two on his belt. He also had three double bladed battle axes strapped to his back. The odd one out was for the reptilian tail that was wound around his waist, seeming to gleam wetly in the light. He was the only 1st Class to develop an abnormality that could actually be considered useful. She shook her head at the assortment of weapons now littering her table, and turned to Reno and Tseng, who were strapping guns and knives to various parts of their bodies.
"They probably moved their meeting place, so were going to have to find someone who knows," she said calmly, and flicked her eyes to the door, as Sephiroth and Cloud walked in. They were dressed completely in black, covered with weapons like the rest of them. They stopped in the semi-circle around the table, looking around at everyone with calm eyes. Cloud's settled on Reno, and he smiled slightly.
"Nice to see your not dead, Reno," he said, and Reno chuckled softly, giving him a lazy salute.
"Nice not to be dead, Sir," was the reply, and Storm was about to yell at them about being formal, but caught Sephiroth's eyes, and sighed. His eyes said very clearly to let it rest, so she did. This was an official mission, after all.
"Reno, where was the last place you saw Rude?" she asked.
"Sector 5," came the prompt reply. She nodded sharply, herding everyone out the door and locking it after turning the lights off.
"I'm sure there is probably some sort of ambush in the Sector, since they probably took Rude instead of killing him. He has inside knowledge, and they'll want it. Don't bother being stealthy getting over there. I want them to know were coming." Her smile was sharp, and the group took off at a fast walk towards Sector 5.
She narrowed her eyes down at the man, taking her dagger out of his stomach, and quickly slashing his throat. Ignoring the blood that sprayed across her, she looked around, eyes narrowed as she quickly took note of the dead, and her group. They were all blood covered, but essentially fine. Cloud and Sephiroth were standing over a man that was yelling to be let go, until she walked into his line of sight. She could only imagine what he saw when he looked at her, since his eyes went wide with terror, and he lost control of his bodily functions. She crouched down in front of him, tilting her head to the side as though she was examining something particularly interesting.
"Where's the Turk?" she asked quietly, and he began to stammer something, but he was stuttering so hard she couldn't understand him. Casually, she reached out and backhanded him hard enough that his eyes were glazed. Grabbing a handful of hair, she righted him, only waiting until the shine left his eyes, before smiling cruelly at him.
"Where is the Turk?" she asked again, and this time he swallowed, his eyes going impossibly wider. He rattled off an address in Sector 7 of the slums, and she nodded. Reaching out her other hand, she gently caressed his cheeks, giving him a soft smile, before swiftly breaking his neck. Letting him fall to the floor, she looked around at the cold eyes surrounding her.
"Nice place for a hideout," Cloud drawled, smirking as they watched the whorehouse from an abandoned building across the street. Rude was being held in the top floor, along with sixteen other men and women, all of them wielding weapons of some sort. Storm smirked slightly, before looking around.
"Be ready to attack on my signal," she said, and before they could argue, she jumped out the broken window, landing in a crouch on the pavement below. She stood and stretched, smiling wickedly at the gawking stares she was getting. Walking nonchalantly over to the house, she stopped, and looked it over, as though she was deciding something. She didn't really have a plan in mind, but she knew if she could keep their attention focused on her, then the others would have a better chance to get Rude out alive. Thank Gaia he was still alive.
"Hey darlin," a fake, sultry voice drawled near her ear, and she turned her head with a smirk. She looked over the skinny figure before her. Long, lustrous black hair, beautiful dark brown eyes, and full lips that looked as though they were made for smiles. Her body was nice, and the toned muscles told Storm that this woman had fighting training, or something along those lines. She was to skinny, but with the understated makeup, she had become a stunning beauty. "I can make you feel real good sweetie. 100 gil, is all for the entire night."
"What's your name?" Storm asked, reaching out a hand and running it delicately over the pale skin of her cheek. Her eyes flashed with desire and anger, and Storm smirked slightly, letting her fingers trail down the long neck, watching with fascination as the woman's eyes dilated, her heart speeding up.
"Um," she said, then had to swallow hard. "Tifa. Tifa Lockhart." Storm's hand stilled, the name ringing bells in her head. In a flash, she grabbed her arm, and dragged her back over to the abandoned building, ignoring the harsh stares she was getting.
"I'll pay her," she snarled to them, before shoving Tifa though the door, and following suit. She turned sharply, a look of righteous anger on her face.
"How dare"- was all she managed to get out, before Storm slapped her, knocking her down to the floor.
"Your not a whore, so stop acting like one, Tifa," she growled, making the girl look up to her with wide eyes. Storm knew exactly who she was. Her mother had been the one to take care of them until they were about seven months old, and even now, Storm remembered her face. Sarah Lockhart had been the only one to show them affection, the only one to treat them as though they were normal babies. Until she left to give birth to her daughter, and never came back. Shaking the memories out of her mind, she crouched down in front of Tifa, watching her calmly.
"Why did you join Avalanche?" she asked, earning a startled glance, then an angry one.
"Because of what ShinRa has done to my family," she spat out, and Storm had to smile slightly. She was happy that Tifa seemed to inherit her mothers fighting spirit.
"What have they done to you? Last I remember, your family was getting ample compensation because your mother worked for us," Storm pointed out, causing Tifa to flush in embarrassment.
"It's not the money," she said quietly, standing. Storm followed suit, her hands resting easily on her guns as she heard someone coming down the steps. "My mother died from mako poisoning when I was two years old, because of that damn reactor. We tried getting her to a hospital, but by the time we realized what was happening, it was to late." Tears filled the dark eyes, and Storm felt a measure of sympathy for the dark haired girl. Flicking her eyes to the shadowed door behind Tifa, she saw Victor walk out, and looked back to her as the man walked over to them.
"Victor, take Miss Lockhart to my house. Contact Angeal or Genesis and have them watch her, make sure she doesn't try to escape or contact anyone." Victor nodded, physically lifting the girl onto his shoulder before she could protest. She began beating his back, opening her mouth to scream, and Storm moved swiftly, pressing down on a pressure point in the girl's throat. After a moment, she went limp, and Storm stepped back. Victor nodded again to her, and then went out a side door, so he wouldn't be visible to those across the street. As soon as he was gone, she put the thought out of her mind to be dealt with later, and walked back out of the building.
Walking up to the front desk, and sneering at the cheap carpeting and tacky red and gold décor, she stopped, staring at the fat man behind it, as he stared at her. He blinked, his eyes going from her, to the weapons she carried, and finally down her scar covered body. He lunged sideways across the desk, intent on hitting some button she was sure, but her dagger was out and shoved through his throat before his hand could even find whatever he was looking for. She took her dagger back, and slid off the desk, walking behind it and up the first set of stairs. Ignoring the grunts and moans of pleasure from the various rooms, she walked calmly up another flight of stairs, then another, stopping at the door for a moment. She listened, making an accurate description of where everyone was, but something that she heard made her forget caution. Kicking the door open, and ignoring the multitude of guns that were suddenly pointed towards her, she looked for Rude, where he was tied up by the window. His nose was broken, glasses gone, but he still held that unnatural calm that he had become famous for. One of the men took the knife out of his shoulder, with only a small grunt from Rude. She sighed, and shook her head, looking around at the people as she tsked.
"You guys really made a mistake, you know that?" she muttered, walking over to Rude and seeming to ignore the guns that stayed steady on her. "You expected more Turks, didn't you? You never expected the Captain of SOLDIER to come to a Turks rescue." She smiled grimly, hyper aware of the shaking muzzles that were pointed at her, the fearful eyes that watched her every movement. Kneeling next to the man, she glanced through the window, barely getting a flash of gold and silver. Nodding once, keeping her eyes steady where she knew her group to be, she waited until the colors were gone, before focusing her attention back on Rude. She went completely still when a gun cocked right next to her ear.
"Your not taking him with you, Captain," a voice growled, and she turned her head with a sarcastic sneer. Looking the man over slowly, her eyes wandered from his feet to his face, and she stood, deliberately putting her own body in front of Rude's.
"So you think you're a match for me, eh?" she asked quietly, the sneer turning into a smirk as arrogance flashed in the mans eyes. She knew what he was thinking. She was one lone female, no matter how many weapons she carried. It didn't matter that she was Captain of SOLDIER. To him, because she had boobs and a vagina, he thought he could beat her. In a blur, she grabbed his gun with her left hand, lowering the barrel as he pulled off a shot reflectively, her right hand going up and connecting with his nose, sending bone splinters into his brain and killing him instantly. Her swords were already out deflecting bullets as he fell to the ground, her main concern keeping the bullets away from Rude. This would all be for nothing if he died.
The door slammed open again, and Cloud and Sephiroth came storming in, swords flashing as they cut through metal and flesh alike. Tseng and Vincent were after them, and Tseng came straight to her.
"Get him out of here," she commanded, and he nodded, lifting Rude in his arms. He jumped out of the window, and she took a moment to make sure he was gone down the street, before a bullet entering her right lung made her turn back to the fight with a growl.
Standing, he sighed as another died. So far they had only managed to get two people who were still left alive, and he and Storm had used what cure materia they had, to make sure they stayed alive. Cloud looked around the bloody, bullet ridden room, his eyes settling on the long black hair, trailing in a pool of blood. He walked over to Storm, and knelt by her side, where she was quietly talking to an injured Mike. He would be fine, since he had only taken a bullet to the leg. It had passed through cleanly, and was already healing since it hadn't hit the artery. His eyes narrowed as he smelled Storm's blood, but since she was covered in so much of it, he couldn't see where she was wounded. Storm smiled at something Mark said, and then stood, Cloud following suit. He watched, panic starting to unfold in his heart, as her eyes went wide, and blood began to trail from her lips. She staggered forward into Cloud's arms, her right hand going to her ribs. It was then he saw the gaping wound in her back, where the bullet had exited. It was pouring blood, and the panic became full force when his mind flashed back to something. She hadn't gotten one mako injection in six months. She didn't have the healing abilities anymore to deal with this sort of wound.
"Storm," he whispered, his voice cracking as his eyes went wide, picking her up in his arms. She groaned softly, her eyes glazed, whether with pain or simply blood loss, he couldn't tell. Now that he was closer to her, he knew her lung had collapsed, she had bullet wounds through both thighs, one in her left shoulder, and another one right above her left hipbone. They all should have been healing by now, at least the blood should have stopped, but it hadn't. Before he could think, he was flying through the building with her in his arms, and then the streets, the only thought on his mind getting her to the medical ward.
"Do something!" he screamed, his eyes flashing dangerously as he stared at the doctor in front of him. The woman winced, but her pale face was calm.
"I'm sorry Captain, there isn't anything else we can do," she said gravely, and Cloud looked over her shoulder to the bloody, still form of his twin.
"No," he whispered, but he knew, he knew! that she wasn't dead. The connection was still there between them, and it wouldn't be if she was completely gone. He rushed over, and ripped out the needles that had been inserted into her. Lifting her again, he ignored the shouted stop from Tseng, but he didn't care. He was up the stairs, and to level 92 before his mind even processed what he was going to do, and how much Storm would kill him if she did survive. He busted through the doors in the lab, glad for once to see the greasy black hair, and cold dark eyes of Hojo.
"Save her, please," he whispered brokenly, staggering to a bed and laying her down. Hojo blinked only once, looking between the two deathly pale faces, before he began yelling orders, shoving Cloud out of the way as he began examining Storm.
"Don't let her die, Hojo. Do whatever you have to, but don't let her die," he said, and the man looked sharply at him, anticipation burning in them.
"Whatever I have to, hmm?" he said quietly, before shoving the emotion down. It wouldn't suit him to finally get Storm back, and then lose her because Cloud decided she was better off dead then with him. "How do you know she's not already dead? Her heart has stopped completely." His voice was cold, clinical, and suddenly anger roared inside of Cloud. He could feel the mako igniting inside of him as he grabbed the mans white collar, shaking him hard enough that his head snapped back and forth.
"If you don't fucking save her, there won't be a fucking hole deep enough to keep me from you, got it you bastard?" Cloud growled, satisfied when Hojo nodded, his dark eyes shining with fear. Cloud let him go, and the mako completely drained from his system as he watched an attendant inject the blue gunk, mako with Jenova, into his sister's lifeless body. He turned his head slightly when Hojo coughed arrogantly, and faced the usual calm, haughty face of the scientist.
"You'll pay for this," he said, before turning back and beginning to work on Storm. Cloud only watched, his eyes dead as he slowly wrapped his arms around his body.
"What else is new?" he whispered. It was the story of their lives, paying for things in flesh and blood. He smiled ironically. Some things never seem to change.