School started back before Kadaj knew it, and life returned to normal in Reno's household…or, normal for them, anyway.

Reno had decided to take Yazoo on a trip somewhere warm where he could fully recover, and after reminding Kadaj that he had school, a Phone Call World Record to maintain (which his stay at Seventh Heaven had severely impacted), homework to do, and an important person to be, the youth graciously decided that he would stay home this time around and let Reno take Yazoo off alone.

This time.

And Kadaj fully expected to be compensated for his selflessness. Possibly even with another World Record.

"Now, I want you to behave and not be a pain while we're gone," Reno said, tossing a carton of smokes into his suitcase. "Rude will be here in a bit."

"Rude?" Kadaj asked, shocked. "Why can't Tifa come?"

"She has the bar to tend to, and you can't stay there thanks to Strife," Reno told him. "Rude's my pal, Kadaj, he don't mind babysitting."


Kadaj drew up short, horrified and not having the first idea what that would have to do with coming to stay with him. His confusion, however, was overpowered by his dismay because never in a billion years had he imagined that large, silent Rude would go around sitting on babies!

"That's just awful!" he cried. He wasn't particularly fond of children – they were annoying, lacked all sense of fashion, and tended to steal his spotlight – but he'd never stoop to actually sitting on one of them…even if they were really asking for it sometimes. "Babysitting? Don't the babies' mothers get angry?"

Reno gave him A Look and drawled, "No, usually they're pretty happy to have someone do it."

Utterly taken aback, Kadaj scurried to help his lovers pack. Though he was more in the way than anything, Yazoo was so happy he would simply kiss Kadaj whenever he was being annoying and laugh over his temper and pouts.

The ringing of the doorbell interrupted and Reno headed to answer it with Kadaj trotting behind him.

"Hey, buddy, how goes it?" Reno asked, pulling his tall, bald friend into a quick and friendly hug. "Good, you still got your key."

Rude nodded and Kadaj peeked at him from behind Reno's back. He'd never really seen Rude in Regular People clothes before – even at the awful dinner or when he'd drop by he was always in his severe dark suit. It kind of scared Kadaj to see how big he was, just all massive muscle testing the limits of his tee-shirt. Kadaj thought of him sitting on a baby and squeaked with alarm, "Oh, that's just not right!"

"What's wrong with you, weirdo?" Reno asked, and Kadaj mutely shook his head, so Reno just turned to Rude and said, "You gotta keep on him about his homework, yo. And only an hour of yapping on the phone on a school night, weekends don't matter. TV after homework, no Animal Planet, it upsets him. A bowl of ice cream after dinner but not before. Drop him off before work and he can catch the bus home. No visits to Seventh Heaven and no Cloud Strife in the house. He only gets twenty Gil as an allowance, don't let him sucker you, and only if he takes out the trash. You got all that?"

Rude nodded again while Kadaj glowered, irritated that Reno would mention all of that useless information when the larger issue of Rude sitting on unsuspecting children was looming before them.

"Alright, we'll be back next Sunday around ten, so it shouldn't be too awful scary," Reno said, idly lighting a cigarette. To Kadaj, he said, "You mind Rude, yo, or you're gonna get grounded and spanked, and I'll revoke all ice cream privileges for life, you got me?"

Kadaj grabbed his arm and whispered, "Can I ask you something over here where Rude can't hear me?"

Reno smirked and said, "Sure, Princess," and let Kadaj tug him into the kitchen.

"Reno," Kadaj said, hugely concerned. "Is Rude going to be god while you're gone?"

Reno took a long moment to answer, but he finally said, "Yeah, he sure is. Even god needs a vacation sometimes. So, while I'm gone, Rude is god."

Kadaj poked his head out and spied Rude idly thumbing through the magazines in the rack near the television. He squeaked again and turned back to Reno, breathlessly asking, "Will he be mad if I don't want to worship? He really worries me!"

Reno laughed shortly and breathed, "Nah, it's okay. It's only for a week. Rude hasn't been god before, baby, so he wouldn't know how to handle worshipping."

Kadaj blew out a huge sigh of relief and said, "Good! Because I don't think I could worship someone who sits on babies!"

Reno blinked twice in startled shock before he burst into hard, mirthful laughter, tears filling his blue eyes. He pulled Kadaj into his arms and hugged him tight, careful not to burn him with his cigarette.

"Oh, baby, you never cease to amaze me!" he laughed, and Kadaj squeezed him back even though he had no idea why Reno was laughing.

Yazoo passed the kitchen and heard the laughter, so he stopped and asked, "What's he done now?"

"I'll tell you in the car," Reno said, still chuckling. He loosened his hold on Kadaj and tugged Yazoo close to kiss him, probably happier than Kadaj had ever seen him. "You all packed up?"

Yazoo nodded and ran his hand through Kadaj's hair, saying with true feeling, "I will miss you, Kadaj! Are you sure you won't be upset?"

"I won't be!" the boy said, and beamed at him, trying to be Grown Up about it. Reno had explained how important this was to them, and he desperately wanted to see them happy. Those days without Yazoo were some of the worst of his life…well, this time around. Being killed by Cloud was the worst last time. Talk about a day made of Epic Fail…

"Go say hi to Rude, baby, and I'll get the bags," Reno said, and kissed each of them again before heading back to the bedroom for the suitcases.

Nervous and restless, Kadaj followed Yazoo back into the living room to anxiously shadow him where his brother spoke easily to Rude, though the man only responded in monosyllables.

"Thank you again, Rude," Yazoo warmly said, and hugged him, which seemed to fluster the big man. "You brought us back together, I can't thank you enough!"

Reno came in with two suitcases and called in a teasing voice, "None of that, now!"

Yazoo let go of Rude, who was blushing, and said, "I can't help it, he's my hero!"

Reno grinned and said, "Yeah? Mine, too. Alright, c'mere, Kadaj, give Daddy a kiss goodbye."

Kadaj flung himself at Reno's chest and clung tightly, squeezing him.

Reno chuckled and squeezed him back before he kissed him – a deep, hungry, loving kiss that curled Kadaj's toes and left him breathless. When they parted, he licked his lips and gave Reno that dopey, love-struck smile he loved.

"Dork," Reno fondly said, and ruffled his hair.

"My little Kadaj," Yazoo crooned, and embraced him from behind, kissing his warm temple. "I'll miss you!"

"I'll miss you, too, Yazoo!" Kadaj wailed, and turned to embrace him. He gazed up into Yazoo's eyes and implored him, "Take lots of pictures! Bring me lots of stuff! Promise?"

"Yes, Kadaj, we'll buy you lots of stuff!" Yazoo laughed, and extricated himself from Kadaj's grip to take up his suitcase.

"Alright, we're outta here," Reno said, and shook Rude's hand with a warm smile.

"Be careful," the large man admonished, and added, "Have fun."

"You can count on it," Reno told him, and hefted his suitcase before he took Yazoo's away from him.

The pair of them headed out of the door to Kadaj's litany of goodbyes and have funs.

Reno paused as he passed the threshold and looked back at Kadaj.

"You be a good boy for Daddy, baby," he said, and added with a wink and a chuckle, "Or else Rude will sit on you."

Kadaj yelped and sprang away from Rude as the door closed on Reno and Yazoo, the man's deep, amused laughter floating in their wake.