Standard disclaimers apply to the characters of Final Fantasy VII, property of SquareEnix. I don't own them, so don't sue.


Touch,

By Winterwing3000


The room was dark as the wooden door creaked open slowly. A figure stumbled through the doorway, past the unfixed bed and toward the adjacent door. Twisting the knob with a shaky hands, the person nearly threw herself against the bathroom counter, careful to not aggravate her raging wounds on her back.

Counting in a haggard breathing pattern to ten, she willed herself to stand erectly. She hissed painfully between her clenched teeth as she removed the bloody top from her bleeding back. The grey tank top had clung onto her like a second skin, making the removing process much more excruciating. Her white chest wrap was stained crimson, but still hanging on.

With her back to the mirror, she turned her head and saw the reflection. Four bleeding, curved and awfully deep gashes were drawn from the area between her shoulder blades all the way down to the curve of her back. The once sooth and pale flesh was marred, and redness oozed from the claw wounds.

Grabbing a towel from the rack next to her, she wetted it with cold water and reached her hand to her wounds with it. Bracing herself for the pain, she lightly skimmed one of the wounds. Immense pain jolted her, causing a whimper to escape her lips. Tears pricked her eyes and she stumbled.

She wasn't sure as to what happened next, since her mind was enshrouded with pain. But one moment, she was falling, the next, she was wrapped in a one armed embrace. A leather-gloved arm caught her around the stomach, the hand splayed gingerly on her left hip. Something rough and cold touched her bare lower back; pointed digits hooked around the waistband of her shorts.

She choked at the intense stinging sensation from the contact between the metal and her raw flesh.

She didn't need to look up to see who it was that saved her. The overly strong scent of gunpowder and the earthy elements was too familiar for her to second guess. And the large revolver, Cerberus, strapped in the holster at the thigh was more than enough to give her savior away.

"You are wounded," he murmured. He lifted her gently and placed her on the covered toilet seat so that her back was to him.

"What are you doing in a girl's room at night? Are you trying to see me naked, Vinnie?" she joked weakly, hands clenched tightly in order to hold back the unbearable pain.

"Hardly. Do you have a Cure in your room?" he asked. She shook her head. "I left it at Aeris' church, in the case."

Wordlessly, he picked up the discarded towel and rinsed it once more in the hot water. Facing her bare back, he traced the injury with his garnet eyes. She had sustained such heavy damage, yet she continued to fight.

The beast had been formidable, armed with razor metal claws and caught her off guard when she deemed it to be dead from her severe attack. He was careless and reacted a few moments too late by firing three shots into its head. She in turn completely drove her four-point shuriken into the beast's chest. The blood sprayed in the background as it fell. Yuffie fell forward at the same time, onto her knees with her hands holding up her upper body weight.

He quickly made his way over to her, minding her glaring wounds as he checked on her. She had brushed him off with a wavering grin on her face, the pain evident in her grey eyes. Sadly, they did not consider bringing a Cure material with them. She denied the Pheonix Down offered and lost her Esuna during the fight. They quickly made their way back to Midgar, to Seventh Heaven, where they were currently residing with Tifa, Cloud and Denzel. By the time they came back, the other occupants of the bar were in bed and the night had fallen.

While he quietly locked the doors, she made her way up the stairs and to her room. He hesitated in the dark, unsure whether to follow her or return to his room. As he climbed the stairs, he could smell the coppery and metallic scent of blood and noticed that a few drops stained the wooden floor. When he reached their end of the hallway, her door was ajar and moonlight from her window slipped through the large gap. There was also a dim lighting in her room.

His sensitive hearing allowed him to catch her painful hiss and his feet mindlessly moved toward her room. Seconds later he was just outside of the bathroom door, looking at her half decent figure. The wrap around her chest was soaked with her blood, yet she did not take it off. Her toned abdomen was clenched, her shoulders tense.

When she began falling as she tried to wash the wounds, his body lurched forward and caught her. His hands fumbled to hold her properly without causing her anymore pain, and he felt her tremble slightly when his clawed hand pressed against her wounds.

Sighing inaudibly, he took off his leather gloves and set that aside before picking up the discarded towel. He doused it in warmer water and moved to wash the blood, but the chest wrap glared at him boldly. It will be useless to clean her wounds when they were half covered. Reaching out, his claw gently ran down the length of it, mutely asking for her permission.

He could almost imagine her rolling her eyes. "Now I really think you're trying to see me naked, VinVin."

"Your wounds will be infected if not properly cleaned," he reasoned, tone unchanged and unaffected by her attempt to rile him.

She nodded, hands lifting to her front, where she tied the knot that held the entire thing together. She made a quick work with it, and slowly lifted her arms. He blinked at her actions as she held the pose for nearly a minute.

"Vincent, you're supposed to help me out of it. I can't unwind it myself," she huffed, glaring over at him with playful eyes.

He acquiesced and was cautious when he unraveled the cloth around her front. When the long roll of cloth fell into a heap on the ground, she drew her arms around herself for decency. The wounds, he observed, were much deeper than they seemed with the wrap on.

He lifted the now cold towel and softly pressed it on the upper section of her injuries. She choked at the sudden contact and stiffened. A tremor ran down her spine.

Silently, he repeated it, each time jolting a stronger reaction from her. She began fidgeting, almost writhing on her seat. By the time he was finished, the towel was red and the color won't be coming off no matter how many times it is washed. She was hunched over, head buried in her arms with her knees drawn up to her chest.

He tossed the towel aside and crouched in front of her. "Can you stand?" he asked softly.

She took a shaky breath. "No," came her muffled reply. "Hurts too much."

"Very well," he muttered. Glancing around, he looked for a spare towel and found none. He unfastened the buckles on his cloak and draped it around her front. "Make yourself decent."

She looked up and nodded, taking the red mantle with one hand. He turned his head to the side, giving her time to adjust it across her upper body. "I'm done," she said, "thanks Vincent."

Nodding once, he turned back to her and slipped his arms under her knees. She latched one arm around his neck, the other holding up the long flowing red clothe. As he lifted her, he secured his arms on her legs, not daring to touch the wounds and walked out of her bathroom, ignoring the lights.

The moonlight poured still into her room, lighting it up with a cool radiance. He placed sat her on the bed, where she maneuvered uncomfortably onto her stomach. His cloak spilled across her white sheets, the ends dangling from the floor.

His eyes roamed at the scene. Her hair, although no longer than it originally was, fluttered just past her shoulders, fanning out. Her cream white skin glowed from the moonbeams, even with the hideous open gashes on her back. It was captivating, even almost breathtaking… He quickly banished the thought that was creeping into his mind.

She groaned in agony into her pillow, hands clenched tightly on the sides of it. "You will need them disinfected," he said in reminder, despite knowing that it only added to her woes.

"Are you crazy, Vinnie?" she whined, "I'm dying here and you want to use alcohol! Can't we wait till tomorrow morning when Teef's awake?"

"If you wish to suffer till then," he said placidly.

"Gosh, I'm in pain and you still scold me," she moaned, "So cruel."

"Hn," he grunted, moving back into the bathroom to get the first-aid kit stashed under the sink. He grabbed the disinfectant spray and the entire roll of white bandages and turned off the lights before he returned to the side of her bed. Her eyes followed him as he walked back to her. He looked much taller and slimmer in his black leather suit. It was almost weird, she blinked at the thought. She felt the weight of the bed shift when he sat down.

"This will sting," he murmured, uncapping the bottle.

"You want to knock me out for it then?" she asked dryly. Her eyes were closed tightly, forehead wrinkled in anticipation.

He didn't answer her but held the nozzle above her back and pushed down a few times along the length of the wounds. She gasped at the shock and gritted her teeth, nearly biting down on her own tongue to stifle her scream. When the searing pain became unbearable, she snapped into a hunched position, surprising Vincent. She panted, tears forming at the corner of her eyes.

"Yuffie," he said, putting down the bottle. "You must lie back down."

Yuffie shook her head adamantly. "I-It hurts t-too much."

She heard something rustle from behind her and the small click of the cap being secured on the spray. She sucked in a breath when he started to wrap the white bandages on her back. He nudged her arms and leaned over her to reach around. She quieted, feeling his breath blowing behind her ear. His touch was tender and careful. Although his fingers skimmed the sides of her breasts a few times, she didn't stop him or shied away. As he tucked in the loose end, she relaxed her back and slumped back onto the mattress.

"Thanks Vince. I really appreciate it," she said, her words muffled by the pillow. She rotated her head, leaning on the softness with the side of her face, and gave him a smile. Sweat matted her forehead, causing her bangs to stick. They irritated her eyes as she blinked tiredly.

He stood up, looking down at her. A beat later, "It's fine."

Suddenly feeling a bit self-conscious, she grabbed at the cloth beneath her and hugged it to her chest. When some cold and uncomfortable bulge pressed against her collarbone, she stared at it and realized that she still had his cloak.

"Um," she hesitated, unsure of how to remove his mantle from underneath her.

"Keep it, I'll get in the morning," he told her.

"No, no," she replied hastily. "Just turn around for a sec. I'll get under the blanket."

He turned around, staring at the bathroom door that was still opened. Closing his eyes, his mind recalled the image from just a moment ago. Her face illuminated by moonshine, her hair fanning out around her, her serene expression, eyes filled with trust and gratitude despite the fatigue wearing down on her person. And the smile that nearly took him off guard.

Her smiles used to be filled mischief, with twinkling eyes of slyness. Or genuine happiness, eyes curved. Or whimsical forlornness, eyes distant. Or overly sweet, eyes narrowed. He saw those eyes and smile many times—in so many different ways—as they traveled together with the rest of AVALANCHE.

But the one she gave him, it was completely foreign to him. It caused his mind to blank, his heart to speed up just a little, and his stomach to unsettle. It was almost peaceful, capturing him completely. It spread warmth throughout his body; it sent a tingle through his blood.

"Here Vinnie." Her voice startled him from his musings. She sat up on her knees, her left arm supporting the white blanket as she held out his cloak with her right hand. Silently, he stretched out his pale human hand to grab hold. Their hands brushed.

Just as he was about to pull away, her hand took hold of his, her smaller hand grasping three of his fingers. His brows furrowed when she tugged him toward her.

"Yuffie."

"Just c'mere, Vincent." She pulled him near her. As she let go of his hand, he was about to back away when she latched at his long hair. He bent his back in order to avoid having his hair pulled out. Their faces leveled but his was holding a sour countenance.

"Yuffie," he repeated, this time his annoyance was evident. They stared at each other, crimson against steel.

Moments passed as the small clock ticked in the background. She smiled sweetly at him and titled her head, pressing her lips to his. He froze and the cloak slipped through his fingers, as he was uncertain of what to do. So she daringly bit down on his lower lip, tugging at it seductively before letting go.

With a smack of her lips, she grinned up at him as he jerked away. "There, now we're even."

He stared at her, his eyes wider than usual. They contained a small fear or shock.

"What? You think I was going to let you get away feeling me up?" she said cheekily. "You wish Vinnie. I don't give freebies."

Unable to reply, he turned to leave and was about to close the door when she called out quietly in a singsong voice, "You forgot your cloak."

He stopped and released a breath. "I'll get it in the morning," he answered her in a shaky timbre without looking back.

She snickered as he left and picked up the forgotten piece of cover. Throwing it across her shoulders, she snuggled into her bed. The coolness of the fabric settled the discomforting throbs on her back.

As she drifted to the realm of dreams, faintly she heard something click and move swiftly but noiselessly to her bedside. The scent of gunpowder was distant, but she relaxed when a light pressure was applied to her brow.

"Good night, Yuffie."


AN: First time writing Yuffie/Vincent and Final Fantasy VII. I hope that it's not too out of character for them, not to mention the plot completely flew out the window (I wonder if there even was one to begin with). Reviews? Criticism?