Memoires Of A Mental Breakdown
Yuffie asks but doesn't really want to know. Shelke tells her anyway.
A catalogued description of insecurity to insanity, told around two foils and their fabricated penchant for conversation.
The path that leads to instability is rarely trod upon, and even less returned to. It's more akin to a one way street that ends in a cul-de-sac of madness – circling 'round and 'round until what you knew and what you know becomes a blur of hazy alcohol fed recollections. The buzz is amped to full volume and the hangover intensified to infinite proportions, comprehendible only to those who have perhaps imbibed lethal doses of liquor, thus rendering the comparison worthless because they're with Aerith now, and that is all that can be said concerning the matter.
"How did it happen?" Yuffie asks, sitting across from the girl in question as the morning sun leaks through the curtain and dapples onto the floor in a waltzing display of shadow and light.
Shelke has to think about this one. She can predict much, but this inquiry is uncalled for.
"Gradually. And then suddenly." There is a stagnant pause between the two. "Is that what you refer to as irony?"
Yuffie smiles. "Close enough."
The first thing Shelke noticed was that Azul The Cerulean possessed a magnificently ornate chrome plated crotch. (It was in her direct line of vision; she couldn't help it.)
"How could one not take heed of such things?"
"Easy, Robo Drone. Close your eyes. Maybe that's why they turn funny colors."
"No, that is because of the mako."
Yuffie can't think of a more plausible argument at the moment, so instead she opts to go with the deft repetition of 'nu-uh!' only more emphatic this time.
The second thing noted was that Nero was severely gagged by medical adhesive. Yet he still possessed the ability to communicate – something Shelke never figured out.
"It seemed rather…futile."
"You mean pointless?"
"I believe I just indicated that."
"English, please," Yuffie partitions, for this is the language she prefers.
For the first time, the ninja bears witness to a smirk tugging at the corners of Shelke's mouth.
"Why? Do you not speak Wutai?"
At this, the poser is graced with the wide open gape of Yuffie Karasagi's unhinged jaw.
"Oh my gods! Did you just make a funny?"
"A funny? Do you mean a joke?"
The smirk returns, this time broader and more evident.
The third was Rosso's unyielding affinity with anything of the crimson variety. "Like blood, yes?" she had helpfully offered. Shelke just squeaked, for she was only nine.
"Can you squeak for me now?"
"Request denied. Please refrain from interrupting."
And finally – fourthly – Weiss was prone to wildly gesticulating with his hands – more comparable to claws than anything else.
"Vinnie has a claw."
"I am aware of that."
"He doesn't gesticulate."
"He doesn't have to. The gun gesticulates for him."
"I think the gun ejaculates for him."
Ultimately – they were not always what they were destined to become – mindless assassins involved in the endless pursuit to quench an indefinite, insatiable bloodlust. They slowly evolved into that, true, but the process took time. Years. Before such nefarious tendencies were implanted – there were moments that could almost be described as tender. Shelke fearing the omnipresence of the dark, for example, and retreating to Azul's bunk for comfort. "Floor," he had directed, seeing her pale and mute at his threshold. "And no talking."
"Or squeaking, right?"
"I would appreciate it if you refrained from referring to that time and time again."
"I can't help it. It's like and addiction. Like you and your mako."
"Do not compare my necessity for mako to your juvenile proclivities of childish banter."
"Again I say: English, please. Are you deaf or something?"
Even Rosso, in all her slaughtering glory, did not always have a penchant for killing all things that retained a pulse. She had a pet for some time – an escaped mutant lab rat, to be exact – and cared for it dearly until the fateful eve arrived where she determined it would be more pleasant to smother it as opposed to feed it.
"Is that how she made that fur skirt she was always whoring around in?"
"You can not procure enough fur from a mere lab rat to suffice the entirety of that robe."
"I was being facetious."
There is a slight pause in repertoire.
"I do not understand."
The pause returns once more.
"She did take to wearing its shrunken head on a necklace for awhile, though. Perhaps she harbored some latent guilt for terminating the creature's life."
"That's a funny way to show remorse."
"Remorse is meant to be funny?"
Nero had trouble adjusting to his wings, a feat highly understandable, for Shelke herself had trouble coping with the residual exhaustion that the neural synaptic net dives left in their wake. The tightly bound man would bump into every stationary object before finally honing in on his stealth like dexterity. He tripped a lot, too. And he had a great difficulty getting back up. Azul was usually the one nominated to help him, since Shelke was too weak and Rosso lacked the required interest to actually care. Weiss advocated tough love and learning for yourself. Thus Azul was always left to pick up the pieces – literally, sometimes, say when Shelke malfunctioned in her terminal – and play big brother for all. It was a feat he preformed without complaint for some five years until the day came when he simply stopped caring and took to only looking after himself. It was a transition that would have stung a lot more had the rest of the group not have gone numb and actually retained feelings of humanity. But they did not – so it was of no great loss, viewed more as an inconvenience than a treachery.
"He had a twin," Shelke offers, interrupting herself for the first time. "I wonder if he still resides among us."
"Why? Do you miss gawking at his chrome plated crotch?"
Here Shelke interjects a labored sigh.
"Such things were inevitable, Yuffie. You'd be forced to take heed, too, had you stood adjacent to him."
"Nah," she dismisses with a careless flick of the wrist. "I would have so looked at his shoes."
Rosso's stilettos were painful atrocities, and this Shelke could personally vouch for, since she had experienced their torture first hand. She was around thirteen – perhaps, it can not be certain, for birthdays were not celebrated among Tsviets; first kills, however, were – and she had managed to abscond away with her comrade's very dangerous footwear, for she was tired of being vertically challenged.
"You ever miss having boobs?"
"To miss them would imply I once possessed them in the first place."
"Hm. Good point."
Rosso found out, no doubt. And she proved to have even less control of herself than Nero when wandering barefoot through the dismal halls of Deep Ground. Nero actually laughed at this – ostensibly before all his emotion was eradicated – and this only stoked Rosso's wrath further. (It should be noted it was not long after that she smothered the lab rat.)
"Did she ever name it?"
"I believe so."
Yuffie waits expectantly.
"Well?" she prompts.
"You gonna share?"
"Share what?" she asks.
"The name, dummy."
"You did not inquire as to the name – only if it had one."
"Well, it was implied."
Again, more blank stares.
"I cease to understand."
"Never mind. Just continue. I wanna know what happens next. We can work on your retarded social skills later."
Shelke had been beaten before – for in addition to brain washing, physical elimination of feeling must also be considered ("Ohmigosh – what are you going to do on your wedding night?!" Shelke balks. "Sleep – I presume.") So Rosso's consequential thrashing was of little importance to the young teenager. Mostly she just felt defeated – for she could not conquer high heels with the same grace and poise that Rosso inherently had. Even Azul – who she expects ratted her out, though who else would steal a pair of stilettos? – commented on the spectacle. Shelke had once again sought refuge in his room, as always (though now it was merely due to habit as opposed to affection) and he proceeded to gawf at her from his bunk, his raucous laughter creating a cacophony loud enough in volume to alert the elusive Nero of the proceedings – who then bore witness to a stumbling Rosso and joined in the mockery.
"In a really, really twisted way, this sounds kind of endearing. But hurry up – I wanna get to the part where she kicks your ass."
There is not much to be told concerning the following beating. It was typical – albeit mitigated, for they had only been part of Deep Ground for four years instead of ten – and if the former had happened more recently Shelke would most likely had not survived due to severe head trauma or massive internal hemorrhaging. ("Or maybe she's just pull out your wires during one of your computer rapes.") Nero put an end to it when he felt as though Shelke had taken enough. Rosso was ready to go at it all day – or night, whichever it was, for they could never be certain – and had Azul carry the girl's limp body back to her room. "Stick to sneakers," he sparingly offered, and Shelke had taken his advice to heart. Her feet hurt more than any other part of her body – in spite of the previous beating.
"Aw, how cute! You wear sneakers because of Azul!"
"No, I wear sneakers because they are more practical. Though I do fear they make me look like a nine year old sometimes."
"It's not just the sneakers, Shelkie, trust me."
As their deterioration progressed – and oxymoron to be sure, yet at the same time the ultimate goal – the hallmark moments prevailed, but not in the same abundant quantity and with more time interspersed in between. One that continues to stick out in Shelke's mind is when Nero kindly offered his services as toilet guard when Shelke received Mako Poisoning due to an accidental (or perhaps not) over dose and spent the next five rotations becoming personally acquainted with the porcelain in her bathroom. Nero took up temporary residency in the tub – his eccentricities all but lost on her by this point – and tried to ameliorate the procession of stomach cramps with macabre fairy tales from his twisted mind. Shelke did not find this helpful in any way, shape, or form, but did not voice such for fear of another beating – and also, she favored the company, for Azul was becoming more and more solitary and blocking off the sanctuary of his room in all cases save for those of dire emergency. And Mako Poisoning did not warrant the classification of 'dire emergency' in his book. (However, when Weiss found out Shelke overslept the next morning due to an atypically brutal synaptic dive beforehand, the giant creature opened his doors and permitted the tremulous girl to hide in his closet – for Rosso's torture was but a joke when compared to the cruelties Weiss was notorious for dishing out on a near daily basis.)
"And when the prince went to kiss the sleeping maiden, he was shot in the back by the jealous brother of said fair maiden, who then proceeded to violate her slumbering body in a release of a very laborious, incestuous love affair."
"Gross," Shelke offered.
"Why? She was none the wiser. I find it quite comical, actually."
"Oh, gods, ew. Shelkie – stop. It burns."
"My brain. My brain is on fire."
"Would you like me to cast Wateraga?"
"No amount of Wateraga is going to help erase this mental image. Quick – tell me something else before I kill myself in a fit of post traumatic stress."
Azul once wanted to confront Weiss on his virginity given his obsession with the color white. Rosso thought this was a bad idea, but once Azul informed her she would not be involved, she agreed one hundred percent. Promise of a potential blood bath was always enticing. As long as it did not involve her blood.
"You moronic fool," Nero admonished. "Do you not favor being alive?"
This sparked a heated debate between Shelke and Nero over the concept of being alive, and if they technically could be defined as such. In the end, Nero won, for it was determined they were still engaged in the process on inhaling oxygen, a trait of all living things, and therefore Shelke was rendered the loser. She glared, making her eyes turn orange for effect. Whether this proved to be amusing for Nero was never evident, for little could be gleaned from his facial features when they were swathed in a plethora of bandages.
"It looks as though you raided a first aid kit," Shelke dripped condescendingly.
"And you don a metal bra. What is your point, child?"
The altercation ended with that.
"Dude, I kinda want to date Nero now. Is that wrong?"
"I thought you did not favor him."
"I didn't particularly like that fairy tale he pulled out of his ass, but the metal bra line was a keeper. Did he usually come up with that kind of stuff?"
"…I try not to remember. He tended to be rather disparaging."
"Well, alright, but so am I."
"Yes, but you are not a Tsviet."
Shelke tries to think of a favorable way to word this, but she has not practice in the latter and finds doing such rather difficult.
"I am not scared of you."
"Hey! I'll come over there and bitch slap you again! Twice this time! Maybe three times, if you really, really piss me off!"
"…Again, I say: I am not scared of you."
She receives a kick in the shins. It does not hurt.
The only conversation Weiss and Shelke ever had was concerning wires. It was nondescript and quite mundane, for Shelke already knew everything he was bestowing upon her, but dared not inform him of that. Thus she resorted to staring at his abdomen, again falling victim to her hazardous line of vision, and tuned out everything that was dribbling from his mouth. She may have looked nine years old, but she now had the mental capacity of a seventeen aged woman, and such aesthetics she found rather pleasing. (Azul's crotch was still a disturbing sight to bare witness to, however. No amount of hormones could ever do away with that.)
"You slut. Gawking at southern real estate like a salivating hooker."
"I did not drool, if that is what you are … implying."
"Hey, good job! You learned something today!"
"…I believe I learned my limit of putting up with you."
"What? Thirty minutes?"
"Give or take."
"So is that all for today?"
"I believe so. You are beginning to wane on my ears."
"Sorry 'bout that. Vinnie says the same thing."
"His mental acuity is very favorable."
"Yeah. Whatever. Like I know what that means."
"…It means he is right."
Yuffie sighs, eyes twinkling, corners of her mouth at a dangerously high level.
"Hey, before you go, can I ask you one more question?"
"…Do you have a crush on Vinnie?"
"I plug into machines. Not men."
And that is all she says.
To Be Continued
This is liable for updates. I had way too much fun writing it. I suppose this could be viewed as a collection of Shelke Traumatizes Yuffie Through Various Conversations And Recollections. But that's not a genre, so I had to place is under drama/comedy. (I was aiming for dark comedy, by the way, but fanfiction dot net ceases to pick up on the fact that such is a genre I advocate for quite frequently, thus I was forced to resort to other classifications instead.)
I understand I have a lot of projects going on, but bare with me. I plan on finishing them all before I die. (Whether or not the feat will happen before you die is the question. XD)
Dedicated To The Gregarious Reader Chick
With Much Love
Thanks for reading!