Disclaimer: These are not my characters.

Pairings:Vincent x Reno, OCs

AN:This is a birthday present for Kigichi, based on an rp we did. Chiot is my character and Anna is hers, but better explanations about them are contained in the fic. I hope you all like it, especially her. If anything is unclear, just ask. Sorry this is a little late hunni, but it's going to be a multi-chapter fic. I'm hoping that makes up for it. This chapter contains a large chunk from our rp, but the rest of it will be fresh writing. The story will be a lot happier after this chapter.

3rd September:

Finding him had been an accident. Reno and Vincent had broken into the Shinra labs in order to regain the files about Vincent, to try and understand more about the horrific demons inside him and give him the ability to control them more. What they had expected to find was a pile of papers, with the information he needed inside them. What they found was a small child, hiding behind the door.

Vincent was ready to go when he heard a noise behind the door and opened it. If he hadn't, his life would have been very different. There was a small figure huddled there, hissing at the bright light. At first glance it looked almost human, but closer inspection revealed strangely wolfen ears, sharp teeth and a grey tail. It looked up with fear in its dark brown eyes, gazing through strands of dirty blonde hair. The hair was matted, long and uncared for. The child whimpered slightly, clutching its filthy rags around itself.

Vincent stared in horror at the unloved child. Reno took a step forwards, making the boy cry out and try to move away. Vincent took a deep breath and walked over. He knew that a child in the labs was probably an experiment.

"Let me. Don't interfere." He crouched to the level of the child, indicating his red eyes with his golden claw. He hoped they would understand the meaning: 'I'm an experiment like you.'
The creature made a movement that seemed almost like a nod, before managing a short growl. Vincent felt relieved at this. The child-creature knew the experiment language, the tongue born of desperation to allow communication in this hell. It was a simple tongue, so that even those who had never been human, or had their intelligence ripped from them under the scalpel could speak it, but it meant they would be able to communicate. A short growl meant a danger. Reno. He purred, a gentle sound, to try and show that he was safe. The creature let out another growl, repeating its earlier warning. He echoed the reassurance. From this close, the child looked no older than eight, and he could see the heavy chain about its ankles, the marks and bruises defiling its skin, the scar across its neck and the abrasions where the restraints rubbed.

It opened its mouth to growl again, about to issue another warning to the stupid creature it was confronted with. The creature, grown-up, Vincent snarled, ordering the youngster to listen. Instead, the child hissed, desperate to get its message listened to. Vincent snarled again, an order which terrified the child and led a whimper to escape its lips from fear, as it gave up. Instead of being satisfied with this admission of defeat, he snarled again, glaring at the young experiment. Trembling, the experiment tilted its neck, exposing the fragile skin for inspection and torture in a show of absolute surrender. Vincent leant over, pressing blunt teeth against the pale skin in a show of strength, before licking the skin to offer reassurance.

The child wasn't sure if it should trust him, and let out a pleading whimper, begging for mercy. Vincent purred softly in his throat, offering safety, a promise that he wouldn't hurt it. The child purred back, thanking him for his kindness.

Vincent smiled, wondering if the child could understand enough to grasp the next concept. He pointed at himself with his metal hand and the young experiment with his human hand. The child nodded once, understanding that Vincent meant that each hand represented the person it was aimed at. Vincent wrapped his metal gauntlet around his flesh hand, purring softly and smiling at the child. The message was clear: 'I'll protect you, it's safe.'

The child paused, and then nodded again, deciding to trust this man in front of them. After all, he was an experiment too.

Vincent pointed at the tortured creature. "Name?" Questions were kept short to minimize the chance of them being heard by the scientist-guards. The child pulled up the leg of its torn pants, indicating the number "12085" branded into its skin.

Vincent shuddered, doing the calculations quickly. In the thirty years since his death, the numbers had increased by almost 12,000. Four thousand a decade, four hundred a year. Over one creature or pitiful human a day had suffered unbearable torture within these labs, before being killed in favour of a new test. He guided the child's hand to his own thigh, pressing the slender fingertips over the brand mark from so many years ago. "207. Vincent. Name?" He hoped that clarified the issue for the child. He wanted a name, not a number. He released the child's hand.

It indicated again at its brand, and then whimpered softly, afraid that Vincent would punish him for not giving him the answer he wanted, even though they couldn't imagine what the answer they wanted was.

Vincent reached out, gently stroking the boy's hair, smiling slightly as he lent towards his hand.

"Come on... you can come with us." A pale trembling hand reached out and took Vincent's human hand in his. Reno stared in confusion as the child slowly stepped out of the labs. Vincent turned to gaze into Reno's eyes. "He's staying with us for a little while." He indicated a pile of notes on the table, with the number "12085" on it. Reno walked over and picked it up, flicking through the first pages and feeling sick about the information it held about the cruel life this child had lived.
"Vincent, he's an orphan."

Vincent nodded. He had already expected that.
"He can stay with us." It wasn't a question. It was a statement that they both knew was true. They couldn't leave the child here. "Come on." Vincent murmured, leading the child from the torture of the labs and into the outside world.