Reason to Live
I woke up in the same position I'd fallen asleep. Yuffie was running a hand through my hair, absentmindedly humming a soft, gentle tune.
"I'm sorry," I blurted before I had the chance to think. "I should have come after you, I shouldn't have acted so-"
"You're horrible at pillow talk, you know that?"
I choked, laughing slightly.
Yuffie continued to run her fingers through my hair. "I'm staying, but there are some things I need."
I felt her smile against me as soon as the word had left my mouth.
"I want to make sure you've let go. If you want me, you get all of me or not at all, and the same in reverse; if you want a relationship with me-"
The soft up and down motion of her chest as she laughed against me made me smile, made things inside of me turn and flip and rejoice.
I wish I'd realized what she'd meant to me before I had to learn the lesson the hard way. "I'll tell you once and I'll tell you again; anything for you."
"Let me leave my socks on the bathroom floor."
I pushed back so I could look down at her and I laughed harder than I had in a long time. "I'll let you leave your socks where ever you please, but don't come running to me when the scissors find them where they shouldn't be."
Yuffie tried to pout, the smile on her face was too large to be covered. "You said anything."
I dipped my head down and kissed her, gently. Pulling back, I sighed. "Anything within reason. Misplaced socks are not reasonable."
She closed her eyes and laughed, running her fingers through my hair and guiding me downward for another kiss.
It was electric, but not overpowering, being in the arms of a woman who didn't care of my past, who didn't pity me for that which was done to me, who didn't fear the monsters inside of me.
Yuffie pulled away, looking up at me expectantly. "I'm hungry." It was a statement, and from the look on her face she expected me to pacify her. I stood and pulled her to her feet, and together, hand in hand, we made our way to the kitchen.
"I don't have much food around. I ate mostly out of necessity than enjoyment while you were gone."
Either she was ignoring me, or she had nothing to say. She let go of my hand and inspected the cupboards, setting to work.
We made pancakes from the powdered mix we found in the pantry; we opened cans of fruit in heavy syrup; we fried a few eggs; we had a decent breakfast, despite our lack of food.
And we fed one another, smiling and laughing and feeling lighthearted and empty-headed.
It was most ease I'd felt in over three decades. The young woman in front of me, with her sweet smile and deep laugh, had saved me when nothing else in the world could, or had even tried. I plucked a peach from the bowl it we had dumped the rest of the can, and held it up to her lips.
Smiling, Yuffie took it. She chewed it, and giggled as she wiped the back of her hand on her skin, ridding her face of the peach juice that had escaped.
I leaned down, feeling contented, and kissed her.
She tasted of the peaches I'd fed her.
And the weeks that flew by were peaceful and full of smiles.
I was determined to take it slow; there would be no scaring her, no chasing either of us off with silly embarrassments or a move too soon. She'd reach for my hand while in town, and I'd do nothing to discourage her. That, of course, only encouraged the townsfolk who noticed she had simply shown up in the middle of the night. Yuffie's favorite story was that the beast had mourned for so long, alone in his castle without his lady, that his grief and longing reached to her and she rushed to his side.
We didn't correct them, but we sure as hell had a good laugh each time we heard a new variant of the story. It was rather wrong of us to get so much joy out of something that, honestly, was rather morbid, but with each new change to the story we cared less and laughed more.
The only downside was having to deal with Cloud and the others. Based off what the situation had looked like when we had left, it was quite understandable when Tifa stormed through the front door, fire in her eyes, finger jabbing me in the chest while she verbally tore into me.
Yuffie stayed silent, but only for a few moments. Unable to hold herself together, she began to giggle uncontrollably. Cloud, looking just as pissed, turned from me back to Yuffie, and then raised a hand to his forehead as if he had a migraine.
It took a few reassuring words before Tifa calmed down, but the fire finally subsided and before long she understood what had happened.
Although, Yuffie had thankfully left out the part where I had picked her up, while she'd been clad in nothing but her undergarments, and nearly had my way with her...
Yes, well, anyway.
Tifa and Cloud, filled with reassuring words and smiles, although I was extremely uncomfortable the entire time, eventually left.
I glared at Yuffie when they'd vacated the foyer, making a theatrical point of rolling my eyes.
"Oh, whatever; I just saved your ass. Could you imagine the look on Tifa's face if I'd told her the real situation and the state of dress I'd been in?"
I felt my face warm under my blush. It had been a long time since I'd been so close to a woman, and it's easy to say I'd never truly spent time with a woman so forward as Yuffie. She was never afraid to speak her mind, a trait I could both admire or detest, depending completely on the situation.
"Stop that," she chided me playfully, tugging me down for a swift kiss before she bounded off to do only Leviathan knows what.
It was summer before long, and Yuffie was growing impatient during the long, hot days. The mansion stayed somewhat cool, what with being nestled so nicely against the mountains, but there were days even I was forced to rid myself of my shirt. That earned a few cat-calls from my little self-proclaimed ninja, but it was more out of teasing than anything else.
Over dinner some hot night – simple sandwiches, as neither of us dared to touch the oven or the stove for fear we'd catch fire – we decided to take some of our rainy-day Gil and spend a little time traveling. Yuffie insisted on the Gold Saucer, complaining that she never got to have as much fun as she'd wanted during the first run-though with Cloud. Not having a better idea, I conceded, and by the next weekend we were packed up in the buggy and making our way across the land.
We started our adventure off by ordering room service and spending the first night simply resting. The ride had taken longer than both of us expected, and Yuffie ended up becoming mildly carsick so we figured that it was best to wait until the morning before we started to have fun.
Yuffie woke me up by jumping from her bed onto mine, laughing childishly. "Wake up, come on! We've got stuff to do!"
And it was quite the day, to be sure; we had breakfast at one of the restaurants that lined the chocobo track, watched a rather silly play, fought a few rounds at the battle arena, and played cheap arcade games until our wrists and elbows hurt.
It was nearing midnight, and we were enjoying the beauty of the gondola. We watched a colorful rainbow of chocobos run past. The fireworks exploded against the night sky like shards of illuminated glass falling from the heavens.
"Do you still want me?"
The question caught me so off guard I almost thought I'd imagined it. But when I looked to Yuffie I could see the faint blush on her cheeks as she made a point to avoid my gaze.
"If I didn't, I wouldn't be here."
It didn't seem to be the answer she was searching for, though I wasn't certain of what she expected. I watched as she opened her mouth a few times, as though she'd thought of s a response then quickly changed her mind over speaking it aloud.
I reached out and placed a hand on her knee. "No secrets; tell me what's bothering you."
She huffed a few times, still looking like she was looking for the right words to say. "It's been almost half a year."
I raised an eyebrow. "Since what?"
It was then she looked up at me, her face flushed and her eyes concerned. "Since we got together."
Pondering for a moment, I nodded. "That's about right, yes. What about it?"
She sighed and crossed her arms, looking away from me. "You're moving too slow, dammit."
I nearly chocked. Had I heard her right? Was she - but I – did she want me to-
"Sweet, chaste kisses can only keep me satisfied for so long, Vincent."
The gondola lurched to an unsteady halt.
So did my brain.
I started at her, baffled. I was worried I would have scared her off had I move too fast, and here she was telling me to get quit beating around the bush.
To be fair, however, she was no longer the young woman I'd first met. She would be 19 in a handful of months...
I guess I'd forgotten how much she had changed since she'd first come to live with me.
Boldness overtook me.
I took her by the wrist and stood, exiting the gondola and tugging her behind me. I could sense her unease and I didn't blame her considering I'd not said a word and merely directed her to follow me without much choice. Let her live with the anxiety for a moment; it would be the least of her worries soon.
I may be a gentleman, but I'm no clod; I'd been taking our relationship slow for Yuffie's sake, unwilling to offend or scare her. The last thing I wanted was to push her into a situation in which she felt uncomfortable in. Regardless, I still had a little bit of man left in me, and that bit of me had been watching the gentle sway of Yuffie's hips when she walked in front of me, the gentle rise and fall of her breasts as she slept with her head in my lap while I read, had paid great attention to her long, delicate fingers, her tiny, round mouth, and-
Leviathan spare me, it was like her words had opened the damn floodgate of hormones in me.
I opened the door to our room at the inn and tugged her inside behind me. I gently pulled her out of the way, shutting the door behind us and, for good measure, placing the chain lock on the door.
When I turned to face her, she was a bundle of nerves obviously not knowing what to expect. "I'm sorry," she held out her hands in front of her as if surrendering. "I didn't mean to be so blunt; I didn't mean to offend you. I just-"
I cut her short with a fierce kiss.
She I pulled back she gazed up at me, the color in her cheeks rising no longer for embarrassment but for something else entirely.
I reached behind me and, without another word between us, turned off the lights.
I listened as her breath stilled, almost amused by the fact the fact that she, very obviously, hadn't expected me to act so boldly.
And bold I was. I tugged at my shirt, pulling it over my head and discarding it to the floor as I took a step toward her. I could easily see her despite the dark of our room; my senses were, after all, enhanced. Even so, I knew she could see my outline, and easily tell what I was doing. I reached down and unbuttoned my pants... and stopped.
Despite the gigantic leap I was taking, there would be no pushing. If she so much as pulled away I would stop in a heartbeat. Which meant that while I'd rid myself of my shirt, she was the one who would have to take the next step.
It took her a moment to react; it was small, subtle, but it was a start. She took a step toward me and placed a tiny hand against my chest. I took a deep breath, feeling her warm skin against mine.
I let her explore. Relaxing, I leaned over her as she set her other hand against my skin. I watched her smile.
"What?" I teased gently.
Her smile grew. "For some reason, I thought you'd have scars across your chest."
I tilted my head quizzically.
"From all the experiments."
Ah. "I used to have scars. But, my body heals differently than yours would."
"Oh." There were no further questions; her curiosity had been appeased by an easy and truthful answer, and she began, once again, to trace her fingers along my chest.
Her hands brushed up and down my abs, and I unwillingly flexed at the sensation. "You're strong."
"Is that so?"
She didn't reply. Instead, it was her turn to be bold and daring. Taking a step toward me, Yuffie pressed her chest against mine. Delicately, she placed her hand on the back of my neck and pulled me down for gentle, sweet kiss.
Ahh, but chaste kisses wouldn't satisfy her forever, would they? I placed my hands on her hips and deepened the kiss, pulling softly at her bottom lip with my teeth. There was no resistance; she opened her lips against me within an instant.
Tentatively, I tugged at her shirt; a pleading, silent question in which I wouldn't push. Yuffie, however, had let herself go; no longer could I hear her breath shake. She pushed my hands away, took a step backward, and pulled the shirt off, tossing it somewhere in the dark. Just like I had, she unbuttoned the top of her pants and waited.
Who was I to deny her? I tucked a thumb into the waistband of her pants and, while I kissed a gentle line down her neck, I pushed them to the floor. She lifted one foot, then the other, and hooked a toe on her clothing so she could toss it out of our way.
I pushed her against the wall and fell to my knees in front of her, kissing sweet trails around her navel and all along her stomach. Reaching behind her, I unclasped her bra and let it slide off her lithe frame.
The low moan she made when I took a nipple in my mouth made my world, and my pants, seem far too small. While my mouth paid attention to one breast, I cupped the other and listened as she mewled, apparently not accustomed to such worship.
She raked her fingernails against my scalp and earned a hiss from me. Arching her back, she pressed against me as if in a fever and I the cure.
"Vincent," she gasped when my mouth paid homage to her other breast.
My patience was wearing thin, as was my self restraint. I stood and crushed her against the wall, claiming her mouth with my own, feeling both lightheaded and lighthearted. Cupping her rear, I picked her up and wound her legs around my waist, making my way slowly to the bed. She held on tightly, even as I leaned over and crawled atop the bed, pinning her down against the mattress.
I pushed against her hips, forcing her down against the cotton comforter, while rotating my own, earning her fingernails digging into my shoulders.
"Leviathan be damned, Valentine; take your pants off." It was hissed command, one that, given the tone of need in her voice I shouldn't have ignored. Yet, I had to, for I had other plans.
When she moved her hands toward my waistline, I stilled her wrists and shushed her, unwinding her legs from my waist and tracing my lips across her taught stomach. The long whine that fell from her lips stopped my breath and nearly made me lose control. I took a deep breath, refilling my lungs, and composed myself. No matter how I wanted her, I'd make sure to please her first; if she remembered anything from this night, it would be that she couldn't walk by morning. My lips pulled in a slight smirk when I thought of that; the always emotive Yuffie Kisaragi rendered motionless, wordless, exhausted, because of me... I very much enjoyed that mental image.
The tight gasp that sounded when I kissed the top of her pink and white speckled panties made my toes curl. Her breath hitched and she whined as I tugged at the thin elastic with a curled finger, pulling the fabric down past her knees.
But nothing came close to the sound she made and the effect it had on me as I pushed her legs apart and delicately kissed her most secret of places. Even Chaos growled within me as I lavished her with sweet yet rough kisses. Each lash of my tongue pried her delicate senses apart piece by piece until she took great fistfuls of my hair and called out my name, arching her back and mewling and thrashing about without aplomb.
Even I was panting when I'd finished with her. She reached out, traced her shaking arms up my own so they could twine around my neck and I crawled over her, looking down at her rosy cheeks and full lips and delighted eyes. I could feel her heart, deafening and rhythmic, as it pumped.
I smiled against her neck, laying delicate kisses on her smooth, warm skin.
When I began to trace my hands down her waist, she tugged at my hair and forced me to look up.
"No more games, you sadistic bastard; just fuck me already."
I laughed, wholeheartedly and pleased with myself in ways I hadn't known I could be. She ended up laughing too, more at my laughing than at her statement, and we made love over and over and over again until someone from the front desk rang our room and told us if they received another noise complaint they were going to have to kick us out.
Yuffie laughed as I hung up the phone, looking like a pleased cat caught in a bowl of cream. "We'll just have to finish this at home."
And if I were to say that we lived happily ever after, it would make me a liar.
We did live mostly happily from then on, but as no one is perfect, and given that we were who we were, Yuffie and I got into the occasional lover's spat and even went to bed angry more times than we should have. But harsh words are easily mended when a verbal argument is the least of what you've gone through together, even before your relationship had started.
I often spouted that I never believed in fairy-tale endings, but everyone holds secrets and I suppose one of mine was that while I didn't believe in them, I truly wished that there were people lucky enough in the world to have the love that I somehow managed to grab hold of. You cannot say we had a fairy-tale ending because, while our story might have seemed fantastic what with the horrible monster turning true and winning the heart of the princess, we were simply not made for stories.
Although, it was a rather happy ending on my part as Yuffie was true to her word and I never again found a stray sock on the bathroom floor.