Title: Thick as Thieves

Fandom: Final Fantasy VII

Author: Nietzsche's Itch

Characters: Sephiroth, Yuffie

Genre: Friendship, Humor

Rating: T

Status: Oneshot, Complete

Disclaimer: I do not own FFVII

Summary: Sephiroth helps Yuffie out with a little frustration, and makes a new friend in the process. Part of the Redeeming Features series.

Yuffie twitched violently, and Sephiroth discreetly moved his chair back, sheltering, not hiding behind his own book.

"Even if the morrow is barren of promises."

He could hear her teeth grinding together now, but Genesis apparently could not, for he continued his discourse, undaunted.

"Nothing shall forestall my return!"

This turned out to be untrue, as his great comeback was sabotaged by Yuffie pouncing on him with a deranged war cry, cutting him off mid-sentence.

"Remove yourself from my person!" he bellowed, trying to shake her off as the ninja hung on for dear life. Eventually he succeeded in disentangling himself from the disgruntled princess and dropped her unceremoniously onto the sofa. With that, he flounced out of the room in search of a more cultured audience. Yuffie huffed irritably and flipped her legs over the top, regarding Sephiroth balefully.

"You look funny when I'm upside down," she said bluntly. Sephiroth chuckled good-humouredly. He liked the feisty young woman and her inexhaustible zest for life. And while she was a little wary of him still, she tolerated him well enough. This was more than he could have expected, or even hoped for, considering his part in Wutai's downfall, and Aeris's death.

"You look funny when you're upside down too," he countered smoothly, drawing a giggle out of her, and she flipped herself the right way up.

Yuffie sighed heavily, considering the changes that the mass resurrection of old friends, old enemies, and some whole new faces had wrought. Aeris had required no getting used to, because they had never been able to fill the void she had left by her dying and leaving them. Zack was a welcome addition, his bubbly and sincere personality utterly infectious and futile to resist. Lazard had been a surprise at the very least, and had been spirited away by Rufus as soon as news of his half-brothers resurrection had reached him. From what she had seen, he was a reasonable and stable sort, and hopefully would exert a calming influence on the younger sibling.

Angeal was, by definition, the 'Old Reliable' of the group. He was pleasant, helpful and conciliatory. No problems there.

Sephiroth and Genesis were the ones who took most getting used to. Genesis was naturally volatile, and opinionated in a way that rubbed most people up the wrong way. It was only when he was with his friends that his human side came out, and he showed himself as something else other than the snobbish, narcissistic brat that he seemed content to have everyone think of him as. Yuffie didn't know what Aeris saw in him, but she always brought out the best in everyone she met, and who was she to say otherwise.

And Sephiroth, she had not known what to make of him at first. He was so different from how she remembered him, though Aeris had made it plainly clear that Jenova had taken him over before Nibelheim had happened, and Yuffie was inclined to believe it. The demon was nothing but the memory he had claimed he would never be, and had been replaced by a man who was sometimes awkward when speaking to new people, gentle and careful with the children and inadvertently sweet in a way that reminded her eerily of Vincent.

And against all odds, she liked him. Yuffie had never been one to hold a grudge, and saw no use in continuing to castigate him for sins that were not truly his. She could tell how strained he sometimes felt around them all, not in that hair-trigger way that made her fear for her life, but they would not have been caught dead in a room together if not for Aeris, and the others still treated him with varying levels of suspicion and hostility.

What he needed was a friend outside of Genesis, Angeal and Zack, someone to bridge that gap.

"Does Genesis sleep with that thing under his pillow?" she asked aloud, inviting a response. She was not disappointed, as Sephiroth's lips quirked just slightly, and she mused that he would be even more stunning if he actually smiled.

"He used to," he said amusedly, prompting her to lean in with a conspiratorial grin.

Yuffie smirked wickedly. "And what about now?" Seeing an opportunity to indulge in a little well earned vengeance for having to listen to Genesis recite the same lines over and over again for years, and still keep his hands clean, he smirked back.

He beckoned for her to move closer and leant in to whisper something in her ear that made her squeal in delight and hug him. She pretended not to notice how he stiffened before he forced himself to go slack in her grip. Yuffie let go after a minute, grinning widely.

"You're my best friend forever!" she declared, before skipping merrily off to execute her master plan. Sephiroth, for his part, was dazed and Yuffie was long gone by the time he emerged from his shock and smiled a slow, honest smile.

Perhaps he would even be brave enough to show her some day.

It wasn't a smile, but the smirk he flashed her the next day as Genesis chewed the pair of them out for his deduction (though neither would testify to having had any definitive part in it) that they had purloined his favourite copy of 'Loveless' would do for now, Yuffie reflected, grinning unrestrainedly at her new partner in crime.