NOTE: Italics - Sephiroth's JENOVA-dominant side in his head
BOLD - Sephiroth's voice laced with JENOVA

Chapter Twelve: Section 14-A

Yuffie peeked out of the lift. What greeted her eyes was
an assembled army of SOLDIER, she immediately felt a
wave of nausea hit her head and her knees turn into jelly.
Shuddering, she felt them give way to hit concrete floor
when Zack pulled her by the hand and positioned both
him and her into the first row. Blinking her eyes from the
abrupt shock and surprise, it relieved her to find a familiar
face in the multitude. Still his grin and words of "You'll be
alright!" were not assuring enough to instill peace in her,
her body was as rigid as a dead body. She made a few
glances towards him to imitate his SOLDIER position,
sincerely hoping that no one would notice sh- eh well,
"he" was a fake SOLDIER as well as a girl.

The mumbling hushed down to complete silence; her
ears caught the echo of boots hit ground then the loud
silence took over. Frantic, she turned her view from the
buoyant Zack to a very questionable General Sephiroth.
His words "I'll protect you" rewound and played over
and over again in her head, she had her doubts yet
contradictory, she could also bet her materia on that one
sentence.

Sephiroth took a quick glance at Yuffie (who stood beside
Zack), before he addressed his comrades.
"This war is inevitable. Die by honor, you fools,"
with a voice laced with vengeance.

Yuffie saw a flicker of arrogance flash past his eyes as he
continued his instructions to the horde
"Train hard and paint the skies red with blood."
It ended with such an icy tone and a Cheshire grin to match
that Yuffie was afraid her veins would freeze.

(Yes, Mother. Such dispensable lives, those mortals.)

In that moment, his words swarmed her head like a tide,
"I'll protect –", "—red with blood", "I'll protect—", "—war",
"—inevitable", "—protect you", "paint the skies red—"
as she stared at him in shock and confusion while the files of
soldiers marched off to their training grounds.

His eyes landed on her. Yuffie awkwardly bowed her head
down and read her boots intently with fear. It was almost as
if her chest was tight and it was hard to breathe. Sephiroth
was emitting an aura of danger, one which she wanted to hide
immediately, cower in a corner, just to be away from him.
He strode his way to her and then cupped her jaw firmly,
having her to stare at him in the face.

"I'm placing you in Section 14-A," and with that, he left.

Confused at the overwhelming shower of emotions the
General had displayed all within a half hour, she stood there
unsure of what to do. The soldiers around her wolf-whistled
softly, some jeered while the rest cheered ("YOU SEXY
THANG", "SWEET!") when the General was deemed to be
out of hearing range. Switching her attention to the soldiers
who were whistling, she glared at them till they shut up.

WHAT'S THE BIG DEAL, BULLY THE NEWCOMER huh?
Her unvoiced complaints rambled in her head. Somewhere near her,
she heard a throat being cleared and a significant "Erm, Yuf—Oops,
I mean, Oaks, you've just been placed in the unofficial homo sector."

Zack had to cover her mouth to muffle her scream of agony and wrath.

As he led her to her sector, she could swear that every pair of eyes
in the training grounds was on her like a hawk on its prey. It gnawed
her conscience like a mouse nibbling on bare flesh that their stares
were indecent, and she tried to convince herself since they thought "he"
was gay, it should turn them off to keep their hands away from her.
At that thought, she felt a hand on her shoulder and turned around to
see two familiar faces.

"Hey it's us, Shears and Hatters, remember?"

Absent-mindedly she nodded her head.

"Didn't expect to see you here," the one she assumed was Hatters for
he had such old features like the one in Alice in Wonderland said.

"Yeah, heard you got assigned to Section 14-A, didn't know you swung
that way boy, Grandpa's gonna be so disappointed," 'Shears' commented.

She felt rage building in her petite body and glared at them."Just
because I'm assigned there doesn't mean I swing that WAY!
I AM NOT A –" She was stopped by a hand on her mouth and
zoomed in on the offending hand. "I'm sure you're not, my dear."
The kind face with plucked eyebrows and shoulder-length hair
brought her aside after nodding to Zack who was quite stunned
at the situation (who then proceeded to shrug his shoulders and walk away).

AUTHOR: Hey, I'm back :) Not a very sweet chapter I suppose but I thank you for all the
lovely reviews from you patient readers.
Would love to have your reviews and constructive criticism, kisses coming up:)