Episode 3: Conflict
Getting to Dagobah was easy for Reno, the swamp planet was not guarded at all, no one would care to go there. Making it through the planet was the hard part. He grumbled about how he rather be a senator than hike through the tick swamp, not even in his days working for the hutts did he need to go through such rough terrain.
There was a cave ahead, filled with a strange aura that made Reno wonder what was in it. He ventured inside, light saber in hand and found Sephiroth in the company of a cloaked figure, too covered in black to be identified.
"Reno, have you come to be healed?" Sephiroth inquired.
"Healed from what?" Reno didn't like the looks of this.
"The midiclorians that poison you," Sephiroth explained.
Reno refused, "that special power gramps has, the electric power, I can do a little of it if I have something to amplify it, if I give up what midiclorians I have, I'll lose the possibility of ever mastering that power."
"You have no hopes of becoming a true Sith; you lack discipline," the clocked figure spoke, her voice making it sound female.
"A true Sith?" Reno looked at the clocked figure curiously; he tried but couldn't see her face, covered in shadows. "Are you saying you are?"
The figure laughed, "I am the greatest Sith of all, Jenova," she removed her cloak, she was a type of human-like alien, with a similar shape but certain key differences. Human skin didn't come in such a shade of pink and no human eyes, not even the eyes of those rich in midiclorians, could glow that brightly. Her long hair cascaded into her cloak and her expression was focused. "If you do not surrender your midiclorians to me, I will remove them from your dead body."
"Sephiroth you traitor, all along, you were collecting midiclorians for this thing!" Reno discovered the truth, there was no denying it. The question was how would he escape with his life?
"Sephiroth..." Jenova addressed her apprentice.
"Should I go?" Sephiroth glance at Reno unsure.
"Take care of the one outside, this one can wait," Jenova decided.
Sephiroth went out of the cave, leaving Reno with Jenova, "what's outside?" Reno questioned.
Jenova looked amused, perhaps mocking, "a real Jedi." Reno wanted to see what exactly was happening outside the cave, but when he tried to leave, Jenova stopped him.
The noises from outside hinted of a heated battle, then a there was a sudden voice, "sorry I'm late Angeal, I'll be right back!"
"Zack, no! The Sith leader is in there!"
A man wielding a light saber with a strangely thick blade, ran into the cave, "the Jedi Knight Zack Fair is here to defeat the leader of the Sith!"
"I told you, you're not ready for this!" Another man with a similar light saber followed the first into the cave, with Sephiroth, chasing after him.
"I'll destroy you all!" Jenova launched an attack of dark force energy.
In the mist of the commotion yet another joined the battle, having sensed the strong energies, "I, Genesis, seek the gift of the goddess of the Sith..." Not knowing if the new arrival was truly an ally seeking to join Jenova or someone hoping to trick them, Sephiroth fought him, his long silver light saber against the other man's long red one.
"Stop it, both of you," Jenova commanded. "I sense this man has truly come to join us, he is not lying!"
Making good use of the distraction, Angeal, Zack and Reno left the cave and got off Dagobah on the fastest ship, which was Reno's.
xoxox xox xoxox
"Are you guys okay with leaving your ships behind?" Reno inquired, wandering if they were transporting any secrets; those two certainly appeared to be suspicious.
"My ship, pod actually, was a mess," Zack admitted.
"Same here, there was nothing of value there," agreed Angeal. "Thanks for the ride; it seems a certain someone hid his energy well enough for me to not know I was being followed."
"Jedi master or not, you couldn't have taken them out alone, you always tell me not to be reckless, but you're reckless," Zack pouted.
Angeal sighed, "you're right... Let's forget about it for now, we'll have another chance when we become stronger. I'm curious about our new friend. I'm Angeal, a Jedi mater and this is Zack, my padawan."
"Who are you calling a padawan?" Zack defended, "I'm already a Jedi knight, Zack Fair, intergalactic hero!"
"I'm Reno, currently a neutral senator and advisor for the supreme chancellor," he might as well give them the story; he couldn't hide it for much longer anyway, though he only told them the nice part. "Whenever I go to the Seventh Heaven in Mos Easley, Tatooine, Cloud always says something about wanting to be a Jedi and every now and then, if I stay for a while, he's go on about how he's friend Zack ran off to be a Jedi."
"Really? Cloud decided? That's great! But you know, last time we talked about it he didn't really want to come, I think he has a crush on Tifa and that's why he doesn't want to leave the Seventh Heaven." Zack got an idea, "I know! Let's do our training to take on the Sith in Tatooine! That way Cloud can be near Tifa and we can help him be a Jedi, he's good, I'm sure he has what it takes."
Angeal nodded, "and we'll need all the help we can get. Senator Reno-"
"Very well then, Reno, is it too much trouble to drop us off in Tatooine? If you're in a hurry, the nearest system you could take us to is good," Angeal requested.
Reno thought about it, with Sephiroth's betrayal a lot of things changed. The rumors about the Sith protecting the chancellor were more than rumors, but the protection wasn't real, the bodyguard was only using his position to keep a close watch on the council. There had been many new developments and maybe it was best to stay on the Jedi's good side, if they even were real Jedi, in case the Sith should try to take control of the council away from the chancellor. "No problem, I'll take you to Mos Easley."
xoxox xox xoxox
Having dropped off the two men who claimed to be Jedi at Mos Easley, Tatooine, Reno contacted the other Turks and they exchanged information at the base in the Alderaan asteroid field. Reno narrated what he had witnessed, about Sephiroth, Jenova and the Jedi.
"The gungans fear the dark goddess is coming," Rude gave his report, short and to the point. He had only recently returned from Naboo.
"The kaminoans said the same thing," Elena revealed. "Apparently, Master Luke Skywalker had a premonition of signs that mean the coming of the impersonation of the dark side. 'When the purest water turns bitter and sour, and the fiercest storm retreats in fright, the dark goddess will seek the power, to bring darkness by consuming light.' That's the warning Master Skywalker left."
While Reno, Elena and Rude were in the Alderaan base in person, Tseng and Rufus appeared as holograms projected from Coruscant. "It all fits together, but isn't it just a legend?" Rufus was starting to have his doubts. "The purest water, the strange contamination in the waters of Naboo that the scientists are trying to solve, the fiercest storm, the one at Kamino... If this Jenova is stealing midiclorians then the last part of the Skywalker's warning fits, she's absorbing midiclorians said to be the source of the force, taking them from those who would have otherwise stood against her, consuming the light for the darkness. Even if the microorganisms are said to be dormant and irrelevant, we've seen cases where they are a source of power. Besides, who is to say they won't awaken in more people? A war may break out with the Sith, but you mentioned there were three?"
"Yes," Reno replied, "I know the legend says there are always two in the Sith to avoid rivalries, but there were three, Jenova, Sephiroth and a new guy, Genesis. Sephiroth and Genesis fought, but Jenova stopped them, I got out of there with Angeal and Zack after that. I'm pretty sure they weren't planning on me making it out alive and revealing their plans."
"If the legends are true, then having two apprentices will not make things any easier for Jenova, even if she is the ultimate Sith. I don't want these past legends, however true they may be, getting in the way. Let's stay out of it and if war breaks out, we'll choose sides then. If the Sith wants to take control of the galaxy, we will side with the Jedi," the plan was as expected from Rufus, to set up a win-win situation. "Of course, we won't surrender control of the council to the Jedi, we'll just let them take out the Sith and maybe, if things go well, there will be a new Jedi order to serve the ruler of the galaxy," by that Rufus obviously meant himself. "Now, about the developments concerning Valentine?"
"I received the report from Ramuh," Tseng replied, "it seems Vincent has no interest in joining the council. However, he has a strong adversity towards the Sith, if we were to side with the Jedi, he might join us."
"It seems we might have to side with them sooner than expected. Very well, we will support the Jedi if Valentine supports us from his place in the council," Rufus decided.
"I also received news that the three special Sephiroth clones, Kadaj, Yazoo and Loz, the only three in the clone army with free will have disappeared," Tseng informed.
"They might end up joining the Sith," Rufus suspected, "consider them enemies, as for the rest of the clones, they are supposed to be mindless, but I'm not taking any chances, send them to Kamino to be destroyed as per their malfunction warranty. There is no need for too many explanations, they'll do it if they are told is to pretend additional danger from the Sith, clearly they are frightened by it. The new republic will be defended by battle droids, the designs have improved since the times of the past."
xoxox xox xoxox
It was the end of the new clone army, which was destroyed in Kamino to prevent it being used against the new republic. The whereabouts of three special clones Kadaj, Yazoo and Loz, remained unknown at the time.
Jenova had gone into hiding, possibly to train her apprentices, Sephiroth and Genesis, to avoid the Sith's past mistakes that caused a war among themselves and drove them to near extinction. Vincent joined the council, siding with supreme chancellor Rufus and in exchange, Rufus offered his support to the Jedi training in Tatooine.
From that point on, the new republic and thus the Turks, remained in the background, their activities overlooked in favor of discussing the rumored impending war between the Sith and Jedi. Even so, in a distant future, the name of Shinra would ring out clearly as the name of a group linked to both darkness and light, thus the events that occurred a long time ago, in a galaxy far away, would be known as the Shinra Wars.
To be continued in the story of another...
Disclaimer, I don't own Final Fantasy VII or Star Wars. This is the end of Reno's story, he can appear later on, but this was the part where he's the main character. I'm turning this into a round robin, though not a direct continuum one, rather it is a story where each part focuses on a certain character and what they did that was vital to the Shinra Wars, hence why the stories can happen simultaneously in different perspectives and can start earlier or later and also end earlier or later in the overall story. In Reno's case he discovered Jenova and Sephiroth, unexpectedly escaping alive thanks to certain lucky distractions.