A/N: Just a one-shot to keep the juices flowing. Tseng's Wutaian. He was in the Turks during the Wutai War. I figured there'd be some racial stuff thrown his way. Probably most of his life too. I'm also endlessly fascinated by what the Turk Courting Rituals would be like. I mean they're Turks! Originally published 11/26/08. Revised 4/17-20/09
Fandom: Final Fantasy 7
Summary: Rufus says the wrong thing.
Pairings: Rufus/Tseng, Mention Rude/Tifa, Mention Cloud/Reno, Mention Vincent/Cid
Warnings: Yaoi, Rufus Angst!, Cursing, Murder (Implied and Downright), Centra-Endorsed Semi Sex Change (Blame the Aeris)
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters in this fan fiction.
Rufus honestly didn't know where the words had come from. Actually, he knew exactly where the words had come from. His father used to say the phrase all the time, during meetings, at public dinners, in front of Tseng. He would love to say the phrase in front of Tseng.
"They're nothing but filthy Wutaian scum."
Rufus's father, along with Fat-man Heidegger, would chortle about massacring the whole lot of 'Wutaian Scum.' He would then jerk his thumb at Tseng.
Serene, and unblinking, Tseng would stare face-forward. One would think Rufus's father talked about the Chocobo races.
Rufus swore he would never say the words to Tseng. The phrase would never be uttered from his mouth.
Unfortunately, Rufus did utter the words, in front of Tseng, to Tseng's face.
Even though Rufus had been healed of the Geostigma, by the Cetra's healing rain, his body had been weakened by the debilitating illness. He found the necessary physical therapy both tiring and boring.
Rufus had always hated strangers placing their hands on him. He would now be handled by virtual strangers almost every day. Of course, Tseng stayed by his side for protection, but the physical therapists touched his body.
The two had just arrived back at the Lodge, after another grueling day of therapy, when the inevitable happened.
Slipping, Rufus almost fell.
Even though the therapy tired his legs out, Rufus had been adamant, he could get by on his own. Like always, Tseng caught him.
Feeling another person's hands on him, even his beloved Tseng's, Rufus could not take it. He uttered the blasted words, before he could blink. "Get your filthy Wutaian hands off of me!"
Rufus considered himself lucky Tseng didn't drop him. He should have.
Rufus would have. He would have dropped, and kicked himself a couple of times, for good measure.
No, Tseng would never harm Rufus. Gently laying Rufus down on the floor, he resumed his calm, at-ease position.
However, Rufus knew the damage had been done. The wall between the two seemed almost tangible.
At the time, Rufus hoped Tseng would excuse him, for having a bad day, and forget about the outburst.
Rufus hoped, in the morning, things would return to the way they had always been. He would go about his day of New Shinra duties, with Tseng protecting him, and, covertly, loving him. One fact skipped his mind. For Tseng to obtain, and hold his position as Head Turk, he never forgot, or let anything slide.
The next day Tseng stood guard, protecting Rufus. However, the all-encompassing love Rufus had felt almost his whole life had vanished.
To be honest, Rufus didn't notice at first. Things went smooth. Meetings had been met. Companies continued to be crushed. Lives ruined. Yes, New Shinra shaped up exactly the way he wished his new company to be, with his ever faithful Tseng at his side.
A few week passed, before Rufus noticed the drastic change
Turk relationships never came under the 'Normal' category. Barring the fist-fights, knife-fights, gun-fights, and emotional blackmail, a few decided quirks seemed to run through all of them.
Possessive, vengeful assault and murder. These macabre practices signified a Turk's love for each other.
If per se, a Turk went out to a bar, picking up a stranger, while their loved one worked hard away on a mission. The Turk expected the stranger to end up dead, once their loved one returned, and discovered the infidelity.
If a Turk became hurt by an assailant, during a mission, the injured expected their 'spouse' to avenge their pain.
Since the Turks' very beginnings, these unspoken rules had been sacrosanct.
The rules also applied to non-Turk spouses.
When someone vandalized Tifa's bar, Seventh Heaven, Rude hunted the teens down, who did the deed, and broke all their fingers. Acting horrified at the news, Tifa still accepted his mumbled marriage proposal soon after.
Reno swore up-and-down, to whoever would listen, that he would always run free and Gay. In reality, he wished to have a steady, like his partner had found. To his regret, every guy who picked him up, would disappear, never showing up for a second date. He started to think himself a jinx.
Reno finally discovered his soul-mate's secret identity, when he had been ambushed, and tortured by a street gang that hated Turks.
Waking up in the hospital, late at night, Reno gazed, through bruised, blackened eyes, at Cloud Strife sitting on his bed.
Staring at Reno, with eerie Mako-blue eyes, Cloud held a sack on his lap.
Reno asked, with a whisper, through his broken, wired jaw, what Cloud had in the sack.
Mouth tilted, in his version of a smile, Cloud showed Reno. In the sack, to Reno's utter elation, lay the head of his head torturer.
Cloud whispered back, he had strewn the body parts of the rest of the gang, on all the other gangs' doorsteps. He wanted to get the message out, that nobody hurt what belonged to him.
Needless to say, the preacher had been called in, and the couple got married the very next morning. Reno's beloved sack still underneath the bed.
The rule even applied to declared ex-Turks.
Vincent Valentine would never admit to the unseen crimes, and Cid Highwind would probably never know. But when Vincent had married the Captain, moving into their home in Rocket Town, the murder rate had somewhat soared around the surrounding areas.
Cid Highwind was just too friendly for the countryside's own good.
Rufus had been dating the most boorish asshole. Two weeks later, the odious man continued to be an asshole and, worst of all, alive.
Rufus realized something seemed horribly wrong with this picture.
The condescending jerk should have been dead, before he had taken pity on Rufus, calling him up for a second date. He had accepted, only because he knew Tseng would take care of the problem.
Tseng didn't do a damn thing. Oh, he stood solid to Rufus's right at the restaurant. He kept watch in front of the bedroom door, while Rufus played slappy-slappy no-go with his date, before kicking him out himself. His date left cursing, but alive.
Rufus spent the rest of the night pouting. His Turk didn't love him anymore.
Rufus wanted to apologize, after making the slur weeks ago. He just had one problem. The Shinra never apologized, to anybody, for anything. This had been the one rule in his family, slapped into his head repeatedly, ever since he could remember. No regrets and no apologies. Because of a stupid family rule, Rufus would die hated by the one he loved and alone.
The matter, which irked Rufus the most, hinged on the fact he couldn't call Tseng on the carpet for any wrongdoing.
To anyone else, not of Turk affiliation, Tseng hadn't done anything wrong. His job consisted of being Rufus's bodyguard, and keeping the rest of the Turks on a tight leash. The last few weeks, he had completed his tasks to perfection.
Rufus felt miserable. He didn't think he could get any more depressed. The Gods decided to prove him wrong.
Rufus didn't want to go. He did not want to go.
If the life of New Shinra, did not rely on the signage of this contract, with the Wutaian government, Rufus would have plead sickness, death, anything; not to go to Wutai with Tseng. However it did, so here he sat in Wutai, with a stoic Tseng standing faithful to his right.
The elephant, standing in the middle of the room, trumpeted.
Rufus looked up, temporarily diverted from his depression. Oh, a real elephant. Lucky him.
With the contract signed, Rufus wished to make a quick getaway back to Edge, and his lonely misery.
The leader, Godo, wouldn't hear of it. He, himself, would give Rufus a grand tour of Wutai, and its beautiful surroundings.
Rufus wondered if the elephant would follow. He turned. Hmm. Must be a pet.
Rufus managed the trek, past the little houses, and the temple monuments. He even choked down the impromptu meal at the Turtle's Paradise.
Tseng seemed so serene. Rufus wanted to throttle him.
Rufus managed to keep his cool, until the tour came to the preschool, then he lost it.
When Rufus had been cured of the Geostigma, Aeris had left him with a little gift. Not only could he make babies, he could now bear them too. He researched far and wide, but the damned Cetra had only 'blessed' him. The only people who knew, consisted of his family physician and, of course, Tseng.
Until a few weeks ago, Rufus had his whole future life planned out. The future consisted of a glorious life of New Shinra, Tseng, and Tseng's babies. With one thoughtless, cruel utterance, his future life now consisted of New Shinra… and New Shinra.
When Rufus realized, Tseng had taken his love away from him, he gave himself a true Shinra pep-talk. He didn't need Tseng. He, sure as hell, didn't need any babies to get underfoot. According to his bastard late father, babies didn't make money. Babies wasted it. He almost convinced himself too, until he had been forced to visit the Leviathan Pre-school.
Rufus stared at a garden of little Tsengs, male and female. The little heads peeked out, from every nook and cranny, when their teacher called them over.
Rufus honestly forgot people came in that size. The toddlers didn't even reach his knee. He would be fine, if the babies didn't touch him. He would be able to make it. Please don't touch him.
Of course, toddlers being toddlers, with Rufus looking like a big wide-eyed glass of milk, the babies all ran to him.
Rufus didn't know what to do. If a large group of businessmen ran to hug him, He could handle that fine. He didn't know the protocol, when a gang of two-and-three-year-olds rushed you.
Taking the decision, out of Rufus's shaking hands, Tseng stepped in front of him. Bending down on one knee, so he would be nearer their height, he enveloped the group, en masse, into a big hug. He talked to them, at great length, in their native language.
The babies giggled, and babbled back, in Wutaian baby talk.
"Tseng? Umm. What are the children saying?"
Halting the sing-song, Tseng pondered how to politely phrase the words for his employer's ears. "The babies inquire, Sir, why my wife wears a suit, instead of a pretty dress, like their mommies."
"Wife? Wherever did the children get that idea?"
Petting the babies' heads in front of him, Tseng would not turn around. "The babies say you smell like their mommies. Wutaians have a keen sense of smell. Since you're wearing white, they believe we've just gotten married. They say you're very pretty for a white lady."
"Can you tell them, I think they're all pretty too?"
Half-turning, Tseng still refused to look at Rufus. "Even for filthy Wutai-"
Moving fast, Rufus placed his hands on Tseng's strong shoulders, to halt his words. The babies surrounding them, patted his pretty white clothes. "No, Tseng. Children should never hear that."
"Sir. The babies cannot understand."
Rufus ran long white fingers, through Tseng's beautiful hair. "Yes, they can, even at this small age. I think you would know that, far better than I ever could."
Imperceptibly, Tseng leaned backwards, into the caress. "If you have my babies, even with the lineage of Shinra, they, too, will hear these curses almost every day of their lives."
Bending over, Rufus rested his lips on top of Tseng's head. "Tseng, you worry too much. Turks protect their loved ones. Our babies will be just fine. If not, I trust you will shoot to kill."
Tseng gifted Rufus with his version of a laugh.
Straightening up, Rufus distributed his petting, to the other small heads surrounding him. "Tseng?"
"Please collect my shotgun shells, from the toddlers, before we leave. If these fine children wish to be Turks in the future, they will have to be able to fit into the regulation suit. I do not care what Reno says. Tradition can be somewhat flouted, but style must be maintained always, if one wishes to be a Turk."