A/N: Mmkay, being the crazed Reffie fan that I am, I took on the 30Kisses LJ challenge: Hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: Reno and Yuffie aren't mine, but the bar and the napkin are.
Note: Entry # 1: Look Over Here!
Title: Closing Time
Entry #1: Look Over Here – Closing Time
Yuffie was, without a doubt, inebriated.
No amount of etiquette training, pleading from father (and various other high court officials), nor constant media coverage of her drunken escapades could blot the young women's affinity for intoxicating beverages. Even now, as lavender eyes bore down upon the still amber liquid, Yuffie knew that her drinking (under the legal age, without a legal guardian, a lot, and tequila) was a very irresponsible action.
So naturally, she shrugged and with a quick toss, sent the burning sensation of the alcohol wriggling down her throat.
She could have choked, but found the blazing sensation that soon consumed her body was welcome. Her body clung to the fire like a child to its mother, and she could feel the knot that was now her stomach loosen slightly.
Ever since AVALANCHE had disbanded and Cloud had yet again disappeared, Yuffie had vowed never to truly depend on anyone. People were just too damn unreliable. So, when her father announced that she must marry within the year in order to provide a male consort for Wutai, Yuffie did what any sensible nineteen-year-old girl living in the modern world would have done:
Sure, she was always dragged back by the Turks, but it didn't change the fact that she ran. She always ran.
"Heya there, Princess," a familiar voice drawled, as equally memorable hands slammed down an empty bottle of vodka on the counter space before her.
Yuffie sighed irritably.
"The Turks that hard up that they can't find real jobs?" she jabbed irately, tucking her ever-short hair behind her bandana.
"Well, you know that Shinra's trying to play nice now. Just so happened we need Wutai for natural resources, and they need us to baby sit you." He stated simply, eyes plastered to the dusty wine rack before the pair.
"So," Yuffie began, annoyed, "chasing after its rogue princess is the way your company fosters substantial business relations?"
Reno brought a hand to his heart dramatically.
"Ouch, your Highness. Ouch." His maudlin expression heightening Yuffie's present irritability.
"Oh please," she snorted into her drink, "as if anything could get you."
Reno shrugged expectantly.
"Daddy dearest treasures his princess, and sends us to get you every time you slip away. If you quit running, you'd be seeing a lot less of the Turks."
"The only Turk I ever see is you, hot shot. I think ya got a crush on me!" Yuffie exclaimed good-naturedly, waving her drink happily from side to side.
Reno nodded curtly.
"Oh, yeah, that's it." He replied curtly, draining his fifth shot glass.
Yuffie quickly sobered.
"Well, why is it always you?" she wondered aloud.
The red-head smirked at the young girl and nodded at the bartender who had refilled his small glass.
"I ran away." He replied simply, before taking a small sip.
Had Reno been a smarter man, he would have also ducked the small hand that thwacked him on the shoulder.
Yuffie crossed her arms childishly.
"You ran away because you were feeling trapped and yet here you are, trying to tie me down with you." She exploded, cheeks becoming rosier by the minute.
"It's different." He replied quietly, eyes not quite reaching her own.
"How so?" the raven-haired youth demanded.
"I can afford to run away; you can't."
"And why not?"
"Because you're a princess and I'm not."
"Not a what?"
'Wait, you or me?"
"I'm just playin', sheesh…No need to be so uptight, Turkey."
Reno winced in profound annoyance.
"Don't call me that," he ordered quietly.
"Fine…" she muttered.
An uncomfortable silence enveloped the pair.
"I don't want it anymore." Yuffie stated softly, the breathiness of her voice grabbing Reno's attention.
"Now that the world's changing and everything's improving," Yuffie continued calmly," Wutai doesn't really need me right now…not till Dad gets sick or dies or something. I just…well, if I'm going to be bound to some power-hungry old guy in a couple of years and serve as a baby machine, I might as well make the best of what little freedom I have left, right?"
"You can't elude reality, Princess." Reno replied, his voice hard.
Yuffie's yearning gaze locked with Reno's cold one and after a short while, she nodded abruptly.
"You're right…guess it's time to cut out the Look over here: I'm a poor princess! Act, huh?" she asked bitterly, downing the rest of her drink.
Suddenly, an obnoxious moan of a woman caused the pair to jump, and Reno sheepishly reached for his phone. After Yuffie had realized that it had been Reno's ring tone to his cell phone, she rolled her eyes and located the exit.
"Reno here." He replied casually, hovering over the counter.
"Reno! Reno, can you hear me?" a feminine voice boomed, and an unfamiliar pang seized Yuffie's chest.
She gripped at her shot glass possessively.
"Geez, Elena, I can hear you just fine. Whudduya want now, woman?"
"Damn it, Blondie, I'm in the middle of something'; make it quick!"
"Ugh, fine! Did you find her yet? Her father's going nutso over here!"
Reno's gaze swept over Yuffie's petite figure and found himself nodding his head towards the exit. Yuffie nodded gratefully, pushed her napkin towards him, and slipped out of the bar. His eyes followed her to the door, and he found himself confused when she didn't turn back around a wave good-bye.
"Reno? Reno!" Elena's voice called, piercing the silence that Yuffie had trailed in her wake.
"Yeah?" Reno called back, distracted.
"Nope, couldn't find her. Must have been a bad tip." He stated simply.
"Well, okay…get back here as soon as you can though, Rufus would like to see you before you clock out."
"Mmkay." Reno replied, ending the call without a goodbye.
Reno's eyes fell upon Yuffie's napkin and with a slight smile, he stuffed it into his pocket. Even after he had exited the bar, the nude lipstick continued to burn itself into his flesh.
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