Written for "The Sacred and Profane". Sadly, I don't own anything to do with Final Fantasy, 'cept this plot. Oh and a really awesome Cloud figurine. But that's beside the point. Enjoy!
A child's dream destination. A parent's worst nightmare.
That was definitely the case here.
Tifa was hastily scribbling down unneccessary amounts of writing inside her organiser. She was in panic mode; the thought of an unorganised day out was torture to her brain.
Instead of feeling at ease as Reno had intended, Tifa winced as she felt his warm hand touch her shoulder.
Reno peered over her shoulder at the mass of pen lines that had filled up his wife's organiser. "Babe. Don't you think you're goin' a little over the top? It aint like I'm gonna lose Holly or anything. I'm trustworthy."
Pfft. And chocobo's fly. Tifa thought, and replied as calmly as she could, "I know, I just...oh and I gotta add that...mmm...yes...aha."
Holly leaned over the small table they were sitting at and stared blankly at Tifa's book. "Mummy, are you feeling okay?"
The brunette blushed and shut her organiser defensively. "I'm feeling perfectly fine, thankyou. I've got everything under control. Reno, you will be taking Holly around the Northern side of the zoo first up, while I have my morning coffee and have a chat to a girl over there I know. You will meet me back here at 12 for lunch, which gives you exactly one hour to go dilly-dallying wherever you want. After lunch-12:30-, we will all go together around the Western and Southern side until 3. Then we-"
It was all too much for Reno to take in. "Waait a minute, back up."
Tifa glared daggers at the redhead. She despised being interrupted.
"Where abouts are we now?"
Both Tifa and Holly sighed in unison, the six year old first to reply. "The Eastern side. Duh! Just look at the sign above your head, stupid!"
Reno blushed and refused to look up. "Shuddup!"
Clearing her throat, Tifa continued, "After we've gone travelling around the world, we will come back here and grab an afternoon treat-"
"Oh goodie!" Reno clapped his hands.
"-Before buying Holly a souvenir and heading back home."
Reno wrapped his arms around Tifa's neck and pecked her on the cheek playfully, knowing how much she loved it. "Do I get a souvenir?"
Tifa bit back a giggle. "It depends. Are you gonna be a good boy?"
Reno kissed her again, resulting in a squirm of digust from their daughter. "We'll see."
Holly held her father's hand as they walked, but only because Reno was too busy trying to read the zoo map to know where he was going.
The young brunette girl giggled and looked up at her dim-witted father. "Daddy, you're reading it upside down. Can I read it for you instead?"
The redhead pulled the map towards his chest defiantly. "I'm perfectly capable of reading a map, thanks. It just looks so damn confusing..."
After a few minutes of wandering around the main entrance where they had begun, Reno asked the obvious. "Where are we?"
Holly rolled her hazel eyes and pointed to their location on the map. "I'm guessing where it says 'you are here'."
Reno grumbled to himself and thrusted the map into his daughter's willing hands. "You work it out, smart ass."
She scanned the sheet of paper quickly before nodding her understandment. "We have to go North and then-oh wow! Daddy, Daddy, look!"
Her eyes were transfixed upon the souvenir store. It had no visible doors and was all too inviting for young children. Smartly placed racks filled with all kinds of souvenirs-keychains, mugs, materia, clothing, and toys-were littered around the inside and outside of the store.
Holly was already admiring a fancy piece of materia before Reno realised what she had said. Quickly, he ran after her.
"I know Mummy said later, but Daddy, just look at it! We absolutely, positively have to buy it!" She held up a sapphire blue orb, containing softly moving swirls beyond its depths.
Reno stared nonchalantly at the object. "What...is it?"
"Ugh." Holly lowered the materia and walked closer to her father. "Daddy, it's a transform materia. A special kind of transform materia. It's a zoo brand one. I don't know what it does, but we should buy it anyway. Just think how much fun it would be to experiment with it! And if we buy it now, that means we can use it throughout the day so it isn't a waste! And it's environmentally friendly! And look! It's only 600 gil!"
Reno choked on his own saliva. She was going quite well with her conning until that last sentence. He knew where she got her deviosity from, but he wasn't as certain about the intelligence. "Holly, Holly! You shoulda skipped the "600 gil" part and just ended it there. You woulda sold me the idea fair and square."
Her hazel eyes filled with disappointment. "Oh. Sorry Daddy."
Reno shrugged. "Meh. You can have it anyway. I'm proud of ya, kiddo."
While he payed for the materia, Holly grinned mischeviously. To say she was cunning would have been an understatement.
Lunch time had arrived, and so had the vultures. Tifa was literally bombarded by two starved 'children', who wouldn't shut up about some sort of 'magic materia'. Which didn't really make much sense.
Holly was bouncing up and down on the spot, spouting out words at a mile a minute. "AndthenwegotanawesomemateriaandDaddy- saidtowaituntilwesawyouandnowwe'reheresonowwecanuseit!!!"
Tifa blinked once. "Can you repeat that, but slower this time?"
Reno smirked. "She wanted some crappy materia for a souvenir, so I bought her one. I said she had to wait until we met up with you before she tested it out."
She frowned, understanding, but not too happy with it. "Reno, I told you we'd buy her a souvenir at the end."
He shrugged, the smirk still plain on his face. "What can I say? The kid's inherited my bulls***ing skills."
Tifa cocked her head to the side and cast a glance towards her pride filled daughter before looking back at Reno questioningly.
Reno grinned and answered her question in just a few short words. "Apparently, the materia's environmentally friendly."
She couldn't hold back her laugh. "Yes. Yes she has."
Holly was still jumping excitably. "So can I try it out now!?"
Tifa smiled at her, and nodded, before shaking her head sadly at her not-so-perfect husband.
And suddenly, he was not-so-human.
She looked down at the spot where Reno had been. In his place was a large-beaked toucan. He was black feathered with a ring of colours around his neck, but his aquamarine eyes still remained the same.
Tifa gasped and rushed towards her feathery husband. Then she giggled. "Well, at least your mouth is the perfect size. You-moo!"
She seemed to have got what she deserved. She was now a brown spotted cow, and she could actually smell her own stench.
Reno was no longer a toucan, but a fiery maned lion. The perfect match for his red shock of hair.
Nor was Tifa a cow. She had grown a fair degree taller, and had been rewarded with two puny ears. Her spots, however, remained the same.
Holly giggled. Her game was a fun one. She pointed her transform materia towards her desired target and watched the process begin. Her father turned from lion to rhinocerus, rhinocerus to bear, bear to crocodile etc, where as her mother...well, she recieved the less desirable animals.
Giraffe to skunk, skunk to ferret, ferret to goat, goat to duck, duck to fish, and so on...
But the little devil didn't seem to mind. She was content with her game, despite knowing she would be in serious trouble when her parents turned human again. Even then, as long as she had the transform materia, she was safe. Her parent's would just have to hope that their daughter grew tired of her game.
"Daddy, thankyou so much! This is the best souvenir ever!"