Alright, this will be a prequel to The Birthday, my other Tseng/Yuffie fic. It is also, sort-of, Tseng's biography. In the part that has to do with The Birthday, Yuffie is four years old, and Tseng is twenty-one, so naturally, there will be no romance between the two. (No, Tseng isn't a paedophile, you sickos! He doesn't love Yuffie until she's at least sixteen! He loves her, but not that way.) There will probably be several prequels and sequels to The Birthday, and this is the first one.

This will be from Tseng's POV. Hope you like it.

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Where to start? Well, the beginning seems to be a good place.

I was born in Wutai thirty-three, almost thirty-four, years ago. My father was a samurai, my mother was a maid in Lord Godo's house. She died when I was two years old, and my father felt he couldn't take care of me, so he left me in the care of Chekov, Lord Godo's right hand. After that, he left, and was never seen in Wutai again. Rumours say that he was killed by Leviathan because he betrayed me and my mother, but rumours say that Sephiroth was actually sane too, so I don't believe that.

I decided early on that I would become a samurai, like my father before me. I set as my goal to become the greatest fighter Wutai had ever seen, and looking back, I must say that what I achieved wasn't so far off from the original goal. But I am digressing.

I trained hard every free minute I had, and I was soon dubbed the youngest samurai of two hundred years time. After having achieved that title, I moved on to learning everything I could about the ninja way of fighting. That training, as it turned out, would come in handy later in life.

At twenty-one, I was nearly finished with my ninja training. Learning has always come easy to me, and the skills of a ninja were no exception. I was arrogant and cocky, and believed I was the best fighter that Wutai had ever had the honour to bring forth, and therefore, I was becoming careless, foolhardy. As it happened, I was the best, but actually relying on that fact is dangerous. I would speak up to my elders and betters, frankly disobeying orders sometimes, because I believed it was beneath me to carry out as meanly tasks as a simple guarding mission. It was partly because of that Chekov called me that morning thirteen years ago.

As I had a great deal of respect for her, I obeyed the command to see her. She was nearly the only one I had respect for, not counting Lord Godo himself, but every good Wutaian respects Godo, it's in our blood, I believe. I had never actually met Godo at that point, but I respected him nonetheless.

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As I stepped in to Chekov's room, I had begun to wonder why I was there. I was sure I hadn't broken any rules, and I had been on a mission just the other day, so I was technically on my leave.

Chekov was sitting at her desk, shuffling through her paperwork as I entered. I pitied her; I had never liked paperwork. I never really got over that, which is unfortunate, as I do all the paperwork for the Turks. But I am digressing again. She looked up as I entered, and half-smiled.

"Tseng" She said. I only nodded back, and sat down in the chair in front of the desk, waiting for her to get to the point. She did so fairly quickly. Putting down her papers, she leaned forward.

"Tseng, I am disappointed with you."

"Why?" I asked.

"I have gotten reports on bad behaviour from your side from Kamiro. Apparently, you have refused to follow orders, and talked back to your superiors. I do not appreciate that, Tseng. That has to change, and soon, as I am re-assigning you."

That caught my attention. Re-assigning generally meant you were allowed to go outside Wutai on missions, and I hadn't been outside the city for very long. The reprimand I had gotten for my bad behaviour was insignificant to me.

"I am assigning you to the task of protecting Lord Godo's daughter, Lady Yuffie." She continued, and my heart plummeted to the ground. Protect Lady Yuffie. Act as a bodyguard for Lord Godo's bratty daughter. My mouth hung open. I couldn't believe that Chekov could do this to me.

"Shut your mouth, Tseng. Whining isn't going to get you out of this one." She told me.

I was doomed. I was convinced the gods were against me. I had no patience with little children, and Princess Yuffie was four years old. I was sure I would either commit suicide by the end of the week, or kill the little girl.

* * * * * * *

When I had recovered enough to shut my mouth, Chekov took me to see the girl that I was supposed to protect. We found her sitting on the floor of the library, playing quietly with a heap of small glass-spheres. At first, I thought it was Materia, but then I saw it was only expensive replicas. She looked up when we entered, nodded at us, and then went back to moving the spheres around on the floor.

"My lady?" Chekov asked. The little girl looked up again.

"Yes?" She answered, looking from Chekov to me, and then back again.

Chekov gestured to me, and told her;

"This is Tseng; he'll be your bodyguard from now on." She then turned to me, and glared at me.

"You'll take care of her, or I'll rip your ears off." She told me, bowed to the princess sitting on the floor, and exited the room.

I stood there, not quite sure what to do, for some time. The princess returned to the spheres that littered the floor, leaving me alone to figure out what I was supposed to do. After some time, I decided to sit down in the chair next to the princess and watch her.

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