Well, I had this idea after seeing a western-themed picture of some of the guys from Final Fantasy on Deviantart. Anyway, got me thinking about a story, which changed six or seven times within the first twenty minutes and eventually landed on this. Which gave me another idea! I want to do a series of oneshots like this. Different Final Fantasy stories in different time periods/genres. Only, I need/want suggestions.

So if you have a time period, paring, or genre (and I do mean I'd even give, like, cheesy romance a shot) then drop me a review. The things I WILL NOT do: yaoi, yuri, cussing (I go old school and "bleep" it if the character says something), lemons/limes/any romance at that level. I don't like, and I don't want to do it. Other than my beforestated reservations, I have no particular pairings that I'm so bothered by that I'd say no. (That I know of, anyway.)

Okay, so this story's protagonist isn't anyone in particular, just an OC I decided not to name. If you want him to be someone, knock yourself out. And I apologize for any spelling or grammar mistakes, I had to use WordPad to write it, and it turns out that program does not have spellcheck. Alright, enjoy.

Disclaimer: I wish I were as creative as Mr. Sakaguchi

He'd been riding the prairie wasteland for approximately 486 years. Okay, two weeks, but was that really so different? The bruises on the insides of his legs were telling him on every other step that they, in fact, were not. High above him, the sun beat down with the arms of a titan, and it was only the promised shade he could see in the coming canyon that kept him from sliding off his bird and just dieing right there.

Oh, and the shade really was wonderful when he finally got there. The lack of sun or glare dropped the temperature drastically, and he pulled lightly on the chocobo's reins, letting her relax into a slow amble. The action would probably add on another hour or so to his arrival, but he just couldn't bring himself to actually care. He did...(sorta) try. At least he hadn't stopped. Or left. Or died! (Unlike the last four guys.) Bolstered by these optimistic thoughts, he continued at his sedated pace.

Half an hour later, lulled half asleep by the managable heat and the slow rocking of the chocobo's steps, he was hit by the first wind. Which, thanks to the hallway-like aspects of the canyon, had become nearly a typhoon. It knocked him loose in his seat and took his hat, his faithful companion, and attempted to steal it. An attempt that was ulitmately thwarted by the stampede strap that snagged under his chin. Granted it did cause him to make a weird sort of hurk noise as something in his throat was pressed against an unwanted neighbor, but there you were.

Frustrated, he wrenched the hat back on and proceeded to vent his colorful spleen on the wind. The chocobo shifted, obviously not only unsympathetic to her master's plight, but also unhappy with the wait. With a further grumble, he kneed her into motion and collected the reins. At least he knew better than to fall asleep again.

On the other hand, it didn't appear as if he'd have the opportunity to again. There were several men perched atop their own chocobos a dozen feet in front of him, having appeared from the small alley to their right. He stopped his own bird, and she clicked her beak unhappily.

"You and me both, Bird," His words were pitched low enough that the men in front of him wouldn't hear. His bird didn't seem to think it was funny, for she twisted around and nipped his shin lightly.

"You're from Shin-Ra, right?" The big, ugly man in the middle inched his chocobo forward as he grinned a yellow smile.

"Maybe. Why?"

"We want what you've got!" Another man, small and very rodent-looking, squeaked from the boss's left.

"Shin-Ra's stuff?"

"Thas right." The boss narrowed his eyes in a what was likely supposed to be a very threatening way. "Now be a good boy, and don't fight."

"Okay. You can have it."

"Wha?" The ugly man lost all attempts at menacing.

"You can have it. I don't really care."

"Good. Portman, go get it."

"Wait, you mean now?"

"Yes, now!" The boss snapped. Ah, he sighed, the wasted humor.

"Oh, well, you have to wait until I deliver it. Otherwise I don't get paid."

"Well, that don't really concer-hey!"

He'd bolted already. Or, rather, the bird had bolted, but since he was on top, he figured it still counted. In any case, he and the bird charged the other men head-on and managed to break through with only a cut to his arm to show for it.

After that, it was a mad dash through twisting halls of dark red rock. Actually, it was a mad dash around a corner of dark red rock, after which the bird tripped and sent him flying through the air. He hit on his back and felt the wind leave him with another funny noise. It was only the thump of coming chocobo feet and the undignified squawk that probably meant his bird had just got stepped on that made him roll to his feet and begin to shuffle away.

He made it a hundred yard (the downed chocobo had apparently caused a sort of roadblock) before the first one was on him. He was rewarded with the robber's boot to the space between his shoulder blades, and then with a mouthfull of red dust. He rolled and pulled out his own gun, not entirely sure yet what he was going to do. He was under the strictest oders - threats to his paycheck had been made - not to kill anyone. Still, he had to admit that he valued his life over his money.

"Alright, kid, we ain't playin' anymore." The boss's face had turned livid and he was practically spitting.

"Oh, but it was so much fun! Just like when we were kids..."

The boss looked temperarily dumbfounded, and then brandished his gun, "Kill him!"

"WHAT IS GOING ON?" The voice that thundered suddenly from the top of the canyon made every man below jump and turn. He was average-hight and pale-haired, dresed in worn work clothes, the sleeves of which were shoved to his elbows. Something long and spear-looking was propped on his shoulder, but more than that couldn't be said, given the angle and the light. And the fact that he continued to yell, "One of you better answer my #*&% question!"

"They're robbing me!"

"Nothin' of the kind!" The boss turned his yellow-toothed smile on the new man. "We were discussing business."

"Well, keep it down. You're making the #*&% Cokatolis get worked up." He turned and began to walk away, leaving the riderless man to his doom.

"You're just going to let them rob and murder me?" Of all the nerve. "That's unfriendly-like."

"You got a gun, shoot 'em first."

"But it's one against," He glanced over his shoulder at the grinning gang, "eight of them!"

The man paused, and then turned back and squinted down at the group. "What is this business all about?"

"It's not business, they're robbing me!"

"Again, nothin' of the kind. He's got something of Shin-Ra's and we want to...ah...help him with the load."

"So far I'm on his side, kid." The blond man leaned on the spear - as it turned out to actually be - and lit up a cigarette.

"I said he could have the stuff. He just needs to wait until I've delivered it, or I don't get paid. If we go my way, everyone's happy."

"Kid's got a point."

"I ain't wasting time with this anymore. Give me what you're carrying, or I'll kill you." The boss turned his full attention away from the man on the cliff. And that, ultimately, was a very bad idea. The man wrenched his spear out of the dirt and, without a moment's pause, heaved it at the boss. The ugly man was carried off his chocobo by the weight of the weapon now protruding from his shoulder. The man followed his weapon a second later, strolling to the shrieking man.

"Shaddup, it ain't gonna kill ya." He jerked his weapon free and motioned at the gang, "Get this &#$ outta here." The gang hesitated, some with their hands still drifting by their weapons. The spear-toting old man didn't appreciate that, and he swung the point of the spear down to the Boss's chest, "Or I'll !$& stick him now."

"Do what he says!" The Boss had found his high-pitched voice, "Get me outta here! I need a doctor!"

"You'll live." The man turned to his savee as the boss was hauled uncerimoniously onto his chocobo, and then away.

"Thanks, Mister. That was-"

"Get lost." The old man turned to glare at him, "This is Highwind property, and I want you the &%!#$ off it."

"Mister, look-"

"Cid Highwind."

"Alright. Cid Highwind, at least let me shake your hand. You saved my life."

The blond man looked a bit surprised, but clasped his cigarette in his mouth and took the offered hand. "You'd have shot them."

"Probably. But the bosses back home wouldn't have liked that much."

"Whatever. You're welcome." He stepped back, shouldered his spear. "Get your bird and get off my #*&% land."

"Yessir." He retreated under threat of impaling and found the chocobo sitting curled over its feet. A few feathers were ruffled, but she did not appear to be otherwise injured. However, judging the by the look she was shooting him, they were going nowhere anytime soon.

If bird-looks could kill, he'd be dead.

I hope you at least giggled a little. So, drop me a review, let me know what you think, or if you want to see something. I have maybe one more idea. Which would be more centered around an actual Final Fantasy character than this one.