Hey people, what's happening? Okay, being bored for the majority of these holidays, I have gone through all twenty one pages of Yuffentine fics and read about three quarters of them. With such an influx of fluffy romance (shudders) I have my own story to contribute. But, warning: I suck at writing anything resembling romance, so if you don't like it, don't flame; it shows that you have nothing to contribute. Well, it's time for my old saying...what was it again? Oh yeah:

Read On and Enjoy


He had hardly moved from his seat in Seventh Heaven since he had returned. His glowing red eyes stared without seeing at the wall opposite him. His long, tattered red cape hung limply, barely moving. His golden claw tapped an everlasting beat, digging into the wood, while his right hand held an empty glass. Vincent Valentine was broken; even after saying goodbye to Lucrecia in the cave and returning to his friends after a week of absence. His happiness was soon overshadowed by nightmares that had shattered any peace of mind he had achieved after Chaos had returned to the Lifestream; nightmares of the screams he had heard while fighting Omega belonging to the people he cared about. He shuddered at the thought of it; he wasn't going to lose anyone he cared about again. He wasn't going to lose her, no matter how hard he had to fight to keep her in his life.

"Vincent?" a voice asked. It was Tifa, his gaze flickering over to her for a brief second before returning to the wall.

"Another glass please, Tifa," he said, placing the glass on the bar. Even though the bar was closed, Tifa had continued to serve him, hoping that maybe he'd get drunk enough to start talking. Cloud didn't approve, but it was a perfectly sound plan; in theory, drunk people tended to be a bit more vocal about their problems. In practice, Vincent remained as silent as ever, only speaking to ask for another drink. For two weeks he had sat there, leaving only to sit on the roof; obviously Chaos leaving him hadn't affected his insomnia.

"Vince," Tifa began, trying to get him to talk, "drowning your problems in alcohol doesn't get rid of them, you know?"

"It seems to work for Cid," Vincent replied, "Why shouldn't it work for me?"

"Because Cid normally gets over his problems the day after getting himself drunk," Tifa retorted, crossing her arms, "and he normally goes on and on about what's bugging him. You don't; you've sat there for two weeks and all of us are really getting worried. So, please Vincent, talk to me," Tifa came around the bar and sat next to the red-clad gunslinger, "What's wrong?"

"You don't need to know," Vincent said, not looking at her.

"I don't, but Yuffie does," Tifa said, playing a card she didn't want to play. Vincent's entire body visibly tightened at the mention of the Wutaian ninja. "You may not want to see it, but she cares a lot about you."

Vincent didn't say anything. He knew exactly how Yuffie felt, because she had screamed it at him only two nights before, adding to the already overwhelming sense of pain he felt from his nightmares. But, lacking that vital piece of information, Yuffie had proceeded to lose her temper and yell at him for "living in the past with that frozen dead chick" and being blind to Yuffie. He was far from being blind to the self-proclaimed White Rose of Wutai, but he didn't say anything. He didn't want her mind tainted by these nightmares. So, with his lack of response, she growled and ran up the stairs.

"Vincent Valentine, if you don't start talking about what's wrong," Tifa said threateningly, "I swear to God I will bring-."

"Nightmares," Vincent said, cutting Tifa's threat off, "Since I came back, I've been having nightmares. Not just when I'm asleep, but whenever I close my eyes, always the same one."

'Finally,' Tifa thought, 'we're getting somewhere.' Out loud, she said, "What kind of nightmares?"

Vincent didn't clam up and stop talking, or say something like, "You wanted to know what was wrong and I told you." Instead, he looked down, and Tifa caught a glimpse of his crimson eyes filled with sadness and pain.

"I'm inside Omega," Vincent said, voice trembling, "and I hear screaming. At first I think it's the screams that the people of Edge heard coming from Midgar, but then I listen closer." His fists clenched as he forced himself to recant what was happening in his head, "and I hear Yuffie's voice, your voice, Cid's, Nanaki's, Clouds, Reeve's and Barret's...you're all in pain. I try to find you," his whole body constricted even tighter than before, and Tifa could see the pain he was in. "But I can't," a tear falls from one of his eyes, "and when the screaming stops, I wake up. Yuffie's is the worst," he kept going, "she screams the loudest, is in the most pain, and it feels like someone is trying to rip my heart out of my chest whenever I wake up; I'm not fast enough to save her, or anyone."

"Vincent..." Tifa said, and then looked up. A figure was standing by the stairs, leaning against the wall, a look of horror on their face. "Yuffie," Tifa said quietly, and Vincent's head snaps up and locks his crimson gaze with Yuffie's stormy grey eyes. She had heard everything Vincent had said; about her being in pain, everything. Tears in her eyes, she ran back up the stairs. Vincent made a move to go after her, but Tifa held him back.

"Don't," she said, "Let me go; I'll try to explain that you didn't-."

"No," Vincent said, shaking the hand off, "This is something I need to do." With that, he moved up the stairs without falling over, which was a feat seeing as he had already consumed an entire bottle of whisky today.

****

Yuffie was sitting on her bed, crying. She had come down from her room to see if her tirade had made even a little difference to Vincent, only to hear that he was having nightmares in which his friends were in trouble. Which meant the reasons that she had screamed at him were totally wrong, and he had just taken it, which was worse, right? Yuffie hated herself right now; she had fallen for Vincent a long time ago, and finding out about his nightmares after she had yelled at him for living in the past with that Lucrecia chick and that he should wake up and see what was in front of him; her.

Tears kept spilling out of her eyes, and she didn't try and stop them. She deserved to cry after what she'd done; she deserved to suffer. Vincent had done nothing to her to deserve what she had yelled at him. He had done nothing but look after her; hell, he had even jumped through darkness to save her life, and she had screamed at him? What sort of thanks was that? Now that she knew why he drank so much, she felt utterly worthless.

"Yuffie's is the worst," he had said; even in his dreams, she was causing him pain. Her tears increased, and her body was wracked with sobs. She didn't hear her door open, or the metal boots walk across her floor or even the swish as Vincent sat down and wrapped his cloak and an arm around her. She felt the arm and her tears stopped as she looked up and met Vincent's concerned gaze.

"Yuffie," he began softly, but he didn't get a chance to continue as Yuffie suddenly started bawling again, burying her face into his shirt. Vincent didn't flinch away; he pulled her closer, wrapping both arms around her. He pulled her closer to him, offering what comfort he could; but it only made Yuffie cry harder.

"Vince...I'm...sor...sorry," Yuffie said between sobs. Vincent rubbed her back, trying to soothe her. He rested his head on hers, keeping her close. He had caused this, and he was going to fix it.

"Yuffie, I should be the one apologising," he said quietly.

"Nooo," Yuffie moaned into his chest, "I'm the one apologising; I shouldn't have screamed at you."

"You didn't know," Vincent said, "I didn't want to tell you; I didn't want you to have my nightmares on your mind."

Yuffie stopped crying and looked up at Vincent. Internally, Vincent thanked any and all gods there were that she had stopped.

"But you..." Yuffie started to say, and then she shook herself, dried her eyes and tried to think straight. Something that was kinda hard when the guy of your dreams was holding you in his arms. "You made us all worry Vince," she said, "you made me worry; when Shelke told me where she found you...I thought you were still living in the past, with Lucrecia." Shelke had told Yuffie everything about Lucrecia, and the thought that Vincent was holding on to someone that hadn't loved him the way he loved her hurt like hell. Yuffie loved Vincent, and when she was faced with the fact that he loved someone else was the worst sort of pain she could imagine.

"I've already said my goodbyes to Lucrecia," Vincent said, looking down at the woman in his arms. He didn't like seeing Yuffie like this; though her normal bubbly personality was sometimes wearing, it was how Vincent liked to see her. Seeing her with tears in her eyes, vulnerable, made Vincent's heart contract in pain; it was worse than listening to her screams every night.

"But I didn't know that," Yuffie said to him, "I was so angry when I thought you were-" she stopped then and looked down, not wanting to meet his eyes. Vincent slid his right hand under her chin and lifted her face up.

"Yuffie," he said, and the way he said it made a shiver go down the Wutaian's spine, "I...I didn't want you to be burdened by my pain. But, the way you are now...it's made me realise that I was wrong. You carried my pain, even when you didn't know what it was." Vincent's eyes flickered, searching her face for something. Then, he leaned forward slightly, and Yuffie became paralysed. He wasn't going to kiss her...was he? Yuffie's arms were still on his chest, and her hands slid up and wrapped them around his neck, pulling him closer. Vincent didn't need any more incentive to do what he wanted to do. His right hand slid into her hair, and he pushed his lips to hers. Vincent slowly moved his lips over Yuffie's, and after a moment of shock that Vincent, Vincent, was kissing her, she kissed him back. The kiss deepened as Vincent held Yuffie tightly against his body, and her arms tightened around his neck in response. Yuffie used the kiss to show Vincent how much she loved him, knotting her fingers into his hair and not letting him go, a moan of pleasure in her throat. She was going to make the nightmares go away, even if it was the last thing she did.

After a few minutes, they broke apart for air, and Yuffie laid her head on Vincent's chest. He carefully laid his head on top of hers. This was how they stayed until Yuffie, already exhausted from all the crying, fell asleep. Carefully, Vincent laid her down on her bed and, after kissing her forehead, he headed for the door. When he opened it, he saw Tifa and Cloud on the other side. Both jerked away as the door opened, and Vincent stared at them.

"Tifa made me do it!" Cloud said quickly, backing off and pointing at the brunette. Tifa turned away from the gunslinger to and glared at the blonde swordsman, "What?" he said, sweat visible on his face. Vincent, for the first time in a long time, actually smirked as Tifa just glared at Cloud, who was starting to crumble. Vincent chuckled lightly as he closed the door on Cloud's, "I don't want to get shot!" and crossed back to Yuffie's bed. It didn't look like he was going to be getting out anytime soon, so he just lay down on the bed, his eyes feeling heavy. He turned to face Yuffie and made sure his cloak was covering her. Quickly, the gunslinger fell asleep, his arm around the young ninja he had just kissed. And for once, the nightmares hadn't come; his sleep was dreamless.

****

After Cloud had caved, Tifa's head went back to the door, listening for any sounds. She couldn't hear anything, so she decided to crack the door open and peek inside. She did so carefully, not wanting to get shot either. When she saw Vincent on the bed, she smiled and pulled her head back, closing the door quietly. She smiled at Cloud and went back down to the bar to finish cleaning up. She was right; talking about your problems got a solution quicker.

Cloud sighed and ran a hand over his face; his girlfriend wasn't being fair to him anymore. If he got shot for this in the morning, he was taking Fenrir and going to Cosmo Canyon for a while. He really needed a break from Tifa going into all of their friends businesses. It wasn't healthy, and sooner or later one of them wouldn't take it in good nature. Cloud shook his head and went down to help Tifa clean up, or she'd pull some other crazy stunt to get him down there.


Yuffie: OMG that was cute!

Fiori: Yuffie *looks around wildly* where the %&$! did you come from?

Yuffie: You should really lock your doors

Fiori: Okay, I own nothing of the creative process for FFVII, i only own Dirge of Cerberus, which is the most KICK-ASS game ever!

Yuffie: Only coz I make an appearance!

Fiori: *groans* Ciao!