A completely rewritten version of The New Turk. Darker, and a rating higher. All chapters after this are declared void. All characters from FF7 are copyright to Squaresoft and used without permission for a non-profit story. No infringement intended. All the characters who do not belong to Squaresoft belong to me, unless stated otherwise. Please don't use them without asking.

Well I don't know why I came here tonight
I got the feeling that something ain't right
I'm so scared in case I fall off my chair
And I'm wondering how I'll get down the stairs
Clowns to the left of me
Jokers to the right
Here I am, stuck in the middle with you.
-Steelers Wheel

The New Turk
by Clara

A girl with feathery mahogany brown hair ran for her life, her thin soled shoes slapping against the damp cement. Clutched desperately to her chest were some 'precious' possessions which she had.. borrowed from a rather annoyed man, whom at the moment was bellowing obscenities to her back. This wasn't too unusual, though. People were always chasing her when they found out she had stolen something of value to them. It had almost become a type of ritual.

"Well damn," the girl muttered under her breath and she swerved out of the way of a couple of garbage cans, then shot a glance over her shoulder at the man who was chasing her. And gaining. Hissing a quiet curse, she bound up a nearby fire escape, taking the stairs two at a time. It shook as the heavy man started after her, snatching at her ankles. At the advantage of being more light weight and more in shape, she reached the top of the building before he could reach her. Panting heavily, she snorted in distaste when she realized that even though she had beat him in this little race, he wasn't very far behind.

"Don't these guys ever give up?"

"Damnit, you little brat, give me back that food!" the man hollered between heavy breaths and loud wheezes. She made a face.

"And here he doesn't even thank me for this free work out.." she muttered, noticing, that even though it was cold, he was still sweating like a pig. Stains were evident underneath his arms and on the front of is shirt. "Yuck. I don't know, buddy, but it looks to me like you don't exactly need this food." She smirked to herself for that witty little comment she managed, even though it wasn't loud enough for him to hear.

"I'd save your breath, mister!" she crowed, deepening her voice slightly. The young girl had disguised herself as a boy, clad in a heavy jacket that hid any of her curves and that had a hood to cover her feminine face. "I haven't even started yet." Giving a curt wave, she spun around and fled to the edge of the roof, leaping over the gap between buildings that would leave an acrobat in tears. Quite a feat.

It had been hard for her.. living on her own after the fall of the meteor. Of course, she didn't HAVE to live by herself.. but the freedom was much more irresistible then having to live under the strict gaze of her father. Her choice of towns could have been a bit better.. but..

She had noticed that as destroyed as this town was, it reminded her a lot of Midgar. It was complete with a huge leading company that sucked the life from an already partially destroyed town. She briefly wondered if this company had anything to do with Shinra.. And if so, what her old friends would do about it.

Being so caught up in her thoughts, she found out the hard way that she had leapt too soon. Meaning, there was nothing but air underneath her. Air that was doing nothing to support her. Swallowing a surprised shriek, she realized with relief that even though she had leapt a little too soon, the airborne girl was still pretty close to the building she had been leaping onto. In the back of her troubled mind, she noticed that this building was way too nice to be in a place like this. She ignored that stray thought and called back her belated instincts, shifting her materials into one hand and grabbing onto a sill of an open window. Spitting out some indecent words, she pulled herself up with one hand, leaning her body against the building to help take away some of the weight. Somehow, she managed to scramble in.

"Ow," she grumbled to herself, rubbing shoulder and wincing. Okay, so grabbing onto a stationary object while you're falling rapidly to the ground wasn't always the most brilliant idea. Especially if you like having your arm in your socket.

Letting out the breath she didn't know she was holding, she turned around..

..only to find herself staring into a pair of the most haunting eyes she had ever seen in her life. Even Sephiroth's eyes failed to hold so many secrets while at the same time glow eerily with Mako.

Shockingly familiar eyes.

"You have ten seconds to tell me who you are and why you flew into my room," the owner of those eyes snarled, bringing up his weapon to level with her nose. The girl kept her eyes glued onto the weapon, chest heaving. Damn. She had managed to save herself once, and now she was in the hands of someone who wouldn't think twice to blow off her head.. if he knew who she was, that is.

"Well? Ten seconds are up. Gunna say something or do I have to kick it out of you?" the man drawled boredly, taking a few steps towards her. He sounded less deadly and more annoyed, since he realized that there was no way she could have stolen anything from him without him seeing. She shrunk back though, leaning precariously against the open window and pressing the items closer to her body. This was a good weeks worth of food. If she managed to get away alive, that is. "And what do you have there? Probably something worthless.." The way he was looking at her supplies told her he didn't care if they were worthless or not; he planned on getting them anyway.

"Worthless to you, maybe, but not to me," she murmured, trying to keep her voice in a slightly masculine tone. Maybe she could pass off as a young boy..

Yeah. Right. Not with her luck, lately.

Bowing her head to hide her face even more, she offered him a grimacing smile that he couldn't see. "If you don't mind, mister, I'll be on my way." She slowly took a step forward, only to have the weapon press against her nose rather painfully.

"Whoever said you could leave?" he asked in a mocking voice with a hint of idle curiosity. He bent over a little, trying to get a closer look at her face. Quickly, she turned away. "Hn. Can't be more than thirteen or fourteen. How'd you manage to get way up here? This is the fifteenth floor, after all, and you don't look like you have any wings, so I doubt you flew."

"It's a long story," she mumbled. "But don't worry your tiny little brain over it.. I'll just be on my way, okay? Okay." He's gunna kill me. Painfully. Especially for that last little quip. Again, she tried to walk around him, and again, she found that damnable weapon pressed against her neck. Biting her bottom lip, she let her gaze drop to the floor. Oh, hell, I hope he doesn't see me..

They stood like that for a long time, him pressing her up against the open window with his weapon and examining her, and her praying to all the gods that she wouldn't lose her balance and go splat against the cement. It was almost like a very morbid tango.

Thankfully, though, he seemed to ignore that quip that she was sure would cost her her head.

Finally, he removed the weapon and took a small step back, trying to get a better look at what he thought was a young boy. That was probably the only thing that was stopping him from killing her, the fact that he thought she was a prepubescent kid.

Letting out a deep breath, she edged away from that dangerous window and pressed herself against the wall, keeping an eye on his boots. He smirked a little.

"Not very talkative, are you?"

"Not to skinny bastards like you," she snapped before she realized what she was saying. Mentally, she kicked herself. All traces of his smirk was gone, replaced with a very stony look.

"Little shit. I tried to be a little nice to you," he growled, and dropped the weapon on the ground. She looked up, surprise and hope written on her face. Maybe he was going to let her go..!

That is, until a sharp fist made contact with her eye.

She reeled to the side and her hood flew from her face. Tendrils of brown hair fell across her features, doing nothing to hide her identity. Reaching up, she gently touched her already swelling eye, then glared at the shocked and frankly very still man.

"I always had a feeling you were an asshole, Reno, but you just proved it to me," she said, keeping her voice light. All the stuff she had stolen had fallen from her slackened grasp and scattered onto the floor in front of her. She reached into her jacket and whipped out a few shurikens that she forgot she had in her terror, hurling them at the still shocked Turk. Or once Turk. Or whatever the hell he was now.

Reno's eyes widened when he saw the sharp projectiles flying at dangerous speeds toward his being. Before he could dodge, the shurikens lodged themselves into his loose clothing and sent him against the wall, pinning him.

"Y-Yuffie?" No way. The chick with the legs? What the hell was she doing in his room? Still shocked by this revelation, he stayed completely still.

For a few seconds.

"Long time no see, Turkey-butt. Look, I'd love to stay and chat.. but then you'd get loose and where would I be? Probably splattered all over that hard pavement down there, and I'm afraid all that blood would clash with my outfit. Anyway, it was great reminiscing with you and what not, but I best be off. Ciao!" Throwing him a quick salute, she jogged lightly to the door, opened it, then crashed into something that felt like a brick wall. A brick wall that wore clothing. A bald brick wall.

The last thing she felt was a sharp pain in the back of her head, and the last thing she saw was a pair of sunglasses.

Rude stared down at the crumpled girl and lowered his gun. He had hit her with the handle, intent only on knocking her out. It wasn't his place on killing this girl, when he had no direct orders to, and would be getting no money out of it. Raising his eyes to the struggling red haired Turk, he would have smiled if he thought it was worth it. Deciding it wasn't, he stepped over Yuffie's prone body and grabbed the shurikens, dislodging them from the wall and setting Reno free. The redhead narrowed his eyes, bent over, and scooped Yuffie up. He hauled her over his shoulder her like a sack of potatoes and carried her out of the room. He had to squash this serious urge to kill her. Reynold would probably interested to know that the old terrorist group could be on the lose again.


Bright light.

Really, really bright light.

Yuffie slammed her eyes shut and groaned loudly. Damn that hurt. She attempted to get up, but for some reason she was incapable of moving. Hell, she couldn't even struggle. What's going on? I don't have a hangover, do I? I don't remember drinking anything...

It didn't take her long to realize that she was sitting down in a rather uncomfortable chair, and apparently.. attached to it. Carefully, worriedly, she wiggled her numbing fingers, then winced. Whoever had tied her was either without a soul, or hated her with a passion, as tight as they tied her.

"She's awake," a feminine voice said. "Jeez...." Yuffie groaned again, the quiet sound of the female's voice sounding like a fire alarm shrilling in her head.

Ignoring what felt like a construction site resting in her noggin, Yuffie slowly opened her eyes. She blinked a couple of times, trying to clear her fuzzy vision. Big blurs of reds, whites and blues were dancing about annoyingly. She waited impatiently for everything to solidify, humming mentally to try and divert her attention from the throbbing the back of her head. It didn't work.

After a few long, painful moments, everything decided to sharply jerk back in place. Yuffie drew in a sharp breath, her eyes darting to each character in front of her. Of course. Only she would manage to get herself caught by the world renowned Turks. And get herself tied to a chair. The blond one.. Elena? walked over to her, then bent down to examine her eye.

"Man Reno, you really did a number on her. Did you really have to hit her that hard?" she asked, wincing empathetically at the already purple bruise surrounding her wine colored eye. Reno just snorted.

"Hey, she was the one who was in my room, and she was the one who decided to be a wise ass. I only did what I thought was fitting."

"Which was use her as a punching bag."

"Why do you care anyway? We're probably just going to destroy the brat after wringing all the information we can out of her."

Elena was silent at that.

The careless voice sent shivers down Yuffie's spine. C'mon girl, get a grip. They're not gunna destroy you anyway.. don't let them get anything outta ya. That would just start a war between this.. company and Wutai, which isn't what any company in this position would want, right? After all, you ARE Yuffie Kisaragi, the daughter of the leader of Wutai. They wouldn't harm you. Besides, no one gets anything out of you unless you want them to, right? Even though a bullet in the brain doesn't sound that comfortable..

Idly, Reno poked her with his night stick. She bit her bottom lip, trying desperately not to scream obscenities at him which would most likely get her a slap across the face and a couple of threats. Reno, being as he was, smirked.

"You sure had a lot to say earlier, kid." His eyes narrowed slightly. "Any reason why you're not saying anything now?"


Actually, the silence lasted for only a few moments. Examining the three of them with a pair of shrewd eyes, Yuffie suddenly began to tap her foot. There was no particular rhythm to her tapping, but by the almost unnoticeable twitch in Reno's lips, she could tell it was already starting to annoy him. She grinned, then pursed her lips together and started to hum a very toneless tune.

"Be quiet," Elena snapped, all the previous condescending pity being pushed away by a wave of annoyance. Yuffie swiveled her head to look at the blond Turk, then fell silent. Truthfully, she didn't really want to make Elena hate her, since she was the only one who was humane enough to show the slightest bit of pity for Yuffie.

tap tap


Reno shot her a look that could freeze fire, then brought his nightstick sharply against her knee caps. The poor ninja let out a surprised cry and bit her tongue, and glared at Reno again. He gave her a falsely innocent look that told her he was just doing his job.


She tapped her feet louder against the floor, and suddenly her tune had words.

"There he was just a-walkin' down the street, singin' doo wah diddy diddy dum diddy doo," sang Yuffie, her voice betraying no amount of the fear she was previously feeling. The only thing her voice was doing was singing very, very off key. Reno winced. She stomped her feet. "Snappin' his fingers and shufflin' his feet, singing' doo wah diddy diddy dum diddy doo!"

"Shut UP!" Elena repeated, leaping to her feet.

"He looked good!" Stomp! Stomp! "He looked fine!" Somehow, she managed to snap her fingers, although the effort hurt like hell and she didn't even think about repeating it. "He looked good, he looked fine, and I nearly lost my mind!"

It was Rude who finally snapped, although the other two Turks were already surrounding her. The usually stoic Turk seemed to huff and stomp over, bringing his gun out of it's holster. When Yuffie saw him come up, her mouth snapped closed. Her feet, though, continued to tap away to what sounded like the song.

Rude looked like an offended-old-lady. That nearly got Yuffie laughing, but she knew that if she laughed it would bet he end of her. She couldn't stop a small chuckle, though.

She didn't like the sound of the chuckle. It had an undercurrent of hysterics in it.

"If you don't shut up," Rude growled, "I will personally shove this gun so far down your throat it will come out of your little ninja ass. Do we have an agreement?" Despite the profanity, his voice still had an offended-old-lady quality to it, and that brought out a laugh from even Reno.

For a long moment, Rude and Yuffie glared quietly at each other, before the captive nodded in silent consent. A small smile still touched her lips.

Reno sighed and sat back down, pulling a half smoked cigarette from his pocket. "I have better things to do than baby-sit this annoying.. annoying.. ninja wannabe," he muttered around the cigarette while he lit it, cupping his hand around the flame as if to stop a breeze that wasn't there. He needed that cigarette. "When's the boss gunna get here?"

Rude ignored his friend's question, walking back to his post by the door. He resumed the position he was in before Yuffie interrupted him, body tensed and coiled, ready for the unexpected. Unlike his friends, who at the moment were just bitterly staring at the rather uncomfortable girl.

Standing tensed and coiled was very, very, not comfortable.

Elena had her own thoughts about this situation. Sure, it was interesting to know the person who had managed to make Reno look like a moron (although that wasn't very hard in her eyes, and there was the fact that Yuffie was annoying as all hell), but there were disadvantages to having this girl here. First off, she was terribly annoying. And if they released her, she would most likely run back to her friends and warn them about this new.. company.

They probably weren't going to release her though.

Oh well. What was another street kid, anyway?

Reno, on the other hand, frowned, watching Yuffie with those disturbing eyes. The incident in his room hadn't really left his thoughts, and they probably weren't about to leave any time soon. He was still sorely tempted to put a bullet through her head for making a complete fool of him in front of his bald friend. Or at least barbecue her.

Her little one-man concert didn't do much to raise his opinion of her, either.

Yuffie silently tried to move her arms, but winced internally when the ropes tore painfully into her tender skin. The most she had managed to do was wiggle her purpling fingers.

Life sucked.

She started to tap her feet again.

Reno rolled his eyes, jabbing her again. "Quit it, brat. It won't get you anywhere."

"Bastard," she grumbled, sounding almost like a kid who got her candy taken away from her. She would have continued tapping her feet and singing her little song, but she wasn't tempted to test Reno's limits at the moment. He looked a little too trigger happy.

Self confident pig.

Any further arguments and concerts were cut short when the door slammed open, startling Rude and nearly bowling him over. A short, stout man walked around Rude and up to Yuffie, bringing his face close to hers. He smelled kind of like her daddy did, wearing some pungent cologne and the scent of sweet expensive cigars wafting around him.

His hands were hidden behind his back.

"You're telling me.. that this little girl stole all that stuff in the back room?"

"We're inclined to believe so, sir," Reno said.

The stout man sort of ignored Reno's answer, eyeing Yuffie with a bemused look on his face. "Well, we could always use a thief like that in our little guild, could we not?" He smirked, then tossed something on Yuffie's lap with his right hand. She blinked at him a few times, then looked down. A Turk uniform..?

"What do you want me to do with this penguin suit?"

"Put that on," the man instructed patiently. "My name is Reynold, you're new boss. If you don't obey, then you die. If you try to escape, you die. If you comply without argument, you live. Sound good?" Yuffie wordlessly nodded, too dumbfounded to do anything else.

All the other Turks stared at him in shock. "Is that really a good idea, sir?" Elena asked nervously with a hint of despair in her voice. Although another girl in the group sounded fantastic, she really, really didn't want Yuffie to be a Turk. "She doesn't look like she'd be cut out to be a Turk. And I mean, she was working with that other terrorist gro—" She was silenced by Reynolds cold glare.

"Do you dare question my orders?" Reynold asked, his voice quiet and mild, and yet laced with an undercurrent of venom. Elena slowly shook her head, eyes slightly wider. "That's what I thought. Reno.." The forementioned paused from staring disbelievingly at Yuffie to look up at Reynold. "Although she has the apparent ability that is needed in the Turks, you are to show her around.. and watch over her training. I am depending on you to make sure she is getting the preparation she needs, even if it means you have to be the one to train her. Understood?"

Blank green eyes stared at him.

"Understood?" Reynold repeated, sounded dangerously impatient.

Reno ground his teeth together, eyelids falling to cover half his eyes. There were times he really regretted agreeing to work with this company. Even Rufus would have given the natural orders of destroying her completely. With no trace. And yet, this round moron was telling him that they were going to take in a person who had once been the Turks' mortal enemy.

Irony had a twisted sense of humor.

But hey, money was money.

Ignoring Reno's frozen look, Reynold waved a hand at Elena. "You. Untie her."

The shocked Turk had no other choice but to oblige, her cornflower blue eyes wide. Sure, she had briefly felt pity for the girl, but that did not mean she wanted to take her in! Frowning at the complex knot in front of her, she pulled her knife from her sleeve and started to work on the rope.

Without sparing them another look, the President of the company turned around and walked out of the room.

After the tight and painful ropes slackened and fell to a useless heap by the feet of the chair, Yuffie finally found the nerve to pull herself to her feet, gently rubbing at her abused wrists. She licked her lips nervously, glancing at each person in the room. What she got in return of her curious stare were three dangerous pairs of eyes that held no welcome or care. Only frightening contempt.

Yuffie cautiously took a step towards the nearest door, only to be frozen by those three accusing and scorn filled eyes. Her long gone fear came back with a whole horde of friends. She bit her lip and fell back a step, clumsily knocking into the chair that had imprisoned her a few minutes ago and causing it to fall over with an angry and obnoxious clatter.

That was the only sound in the room.

Taking a deep, calming breath, she raised her head confidently and stared defiantly into those deliciously dangerous eyes. After a few minutes of their staring contest, the brown haired ninja finally gathered enough courage to speak. "What?" Her voice sounded strangely unfamiliar to her own ears. "Do you want me to change in front of you or something?"

A small, small smirk played across the corners of Reno's lips. "As if you would have anything I would want to see."

"Hey now, no need to get insulting," Yuffie managed, chuckling nervously. Her good eye narrowed, though, and her fake smile looked more like a sneer. If there was anything the young girl hated most, it was when people insulted her lack of curves. It wasn't her fault that most the people she was acquainted with were too voluptuous for their own good.

Squaring her shoulders and mustering every ounce of her princess etiquette her father had forced on her while she was growing up, the brown haired, once princess stomped over to the apathetic bald Turk and stood on her tip-toes so that they would be eye to eye if he had his sunglasses off.

"Look, bud. I don't want to be here as much as you don't want me to be here. But guess what? It's not my fault. It's your little red-haired friend's fault. If he'd have just let me go when we had a chance, we wouldn't be in this stupid situation. But I don't have a choice. You don't have a choice either, unless you want to keep your job and your life. Now, would you be so kind as to show me where I can change? I don't want to strip in front of you damn voyeurs, or anything."

Showing no emotion to her brief tirade, Rude lead her out of the room. The two other Turks trailed after him, forming a type of unusual train. Yuffie snorted. In her book, this situation was way past unusual and now into the "when hell freezes over something like this would happen". She sighed quietly, hoping that this bathroom would have a nice sink with running hot water and a few washcloths. She felt so dirty, for some reason.

Instead, she found herself looking at what was apparently the dirtiest bathroom in the whole building. She stared with disgusted disbelief.

"Well? What are you waiting for?" That same, annoying voice hissed uncomfortably close to her ear. "Go change, Princess."

Yuffie opened her mouth to protest, dying to say that this place was not suitable for the likes of her, but instead, she closed her mouth and walked into the bathroom, back rigid. "Stupid over confident self righteous pig.." She didn't do much to keep the others from hearing, and Reno even had the audacity to grin a little at her. If he had met her under different circumstances, he would have thought she was amusing.

"Not so fast." Rude's chilly voice froze her in mid step. She turned half way around, expecting to see Rude whip out a gun and stick it against her nose. Instead, Reno gently shoved Elena towards Yuffie. Both girls blinked uncomprehendingly.

Elena spun around and growled. "What the hell do you think you're doing?"

The two boys in the group crossed their arms, eyes narrowed. Well, actually, Yuffie could just imagine Rude's eyes narrowed. He was still wearing his sunglasses.

"You're going to watch her and make sure she doesn't try to escape," Reno said in a no nonsense voice.


"We're not going to be the ones who watch her."



Both girls developed major twitches in their eyes, then turned around and walked into the bathroom, both wearing disbelieving expressions.


Yuffie turned away from the blond Turk who was currently sitting on the sink, removing her jacket carefully and tossing it unceremoniously to the ground. She was feeling interestingly numb to these new series of events. Her body was still insisting that this was impossible, and that she was really safe in her condemned apartment.

Safe in her condemned apartment. The world was so ironic at times.

Carefully, Yuffie reached over and grabbed the button-up blouse that was neatly folded on top of the toilet's lid. Gingerly sliding the shirt over her bandaged right arm, she checked over her shoulder to make sure Elena wasn't watching, and began unraveling the bandages she used to hide her underdeveloped chest. It wasn't her fault she didn't have enough meat on her bones to actually get a decent body.

"What's that?" a boredly curious voice asked.

Yuffie froze guiltily, then glanced at Elena. The blond girl was staring pointedly at her arm.

"Oh, my arm?" the ninja shrugged, slightly grateful for the friendlier tone Elena was using with her. She shrugged carefully, starting to button up her shirt. "People don't like it when you try to take their purses. Would you believe a little old lady did that to me? She pulled a knife out of nowhere and just sliced my arm open. I was so surprised.." She sighed a little, then mumbled almost silently to herself, "And then I had to go and pull the same arm out of it's socket while trying not to go splat on the pavement.."

"Seriously?" Elena sounded more than a little astonished. For some reason, she couldn't really imagine a little old lady slicing Yuffie's arm off. The mental image was just too odd.

"Seriously." The younger girl had finished buttoning the shirt, but left a few buttons on the top open, exposing the cleavage she had. Hey, even she deserved vengeance once and a while.

"Well," Elena said, sounding slightly nervous and more than a little guilty. She didn't know why she was doing this, maybe some of that pity was coming back. Reno might not be happy about this.. but.. "I have a cure materia, if you like. I think you should use it on your arm, and most definitely on your eye.."

Yuffie paused in the middle of buttoning her pants up, then glanced again at Elena with a new type of respect.

"Actually, I'd like that very much. Thanks!"

Curiously, not to mention cross-eyed, Reno examined the cigarette he was smoking. It was the second cigarette he'd started since the two girls had gone into the bathroom. The Marbolo was already almost entirely gone. If he smoked it any longer, he would be smoking the part where.. you weren't supposed to smoke. Sighing at this insightful revelation, he squished the tip of his cigarette on the armrest of his chair, then flicked it into the overflowing ashtray.

"How long are they going to be in there?" Reno asked for the fifth time in fifteen minutes. Rude shrugged, ignoring the fact that Reno probably wasn't paying attention. The red-head sighed, fiddling with the scorch mark he left on the armrest. This new predicament was promising to be a whole handful of headaches. He wondered if he could take his vacation then. Get away while the others dealed with her. Maybe take a sick leave.

He belatedly remembered Reynold's threatening order, then pounded on the armrest of his chair.

"Why the hell do we need to watch that little shit, anyway? It's bad enough we have to train Elena—but her?! She's worse than a rookie!"

"Thanks a lot, Reno," Elena snapped sarcastically as she walked out of the bathroom. Brushing her fingers over her suit as if to get rid of the imaginary grime that came from the bathroom, she looked over her shoulder at the newest addition to the group.

Meanwhile, the said character was turning her sunglasses around in her hands, examining them with a pair of skeptical maroon eyes. Never in her wildest dreams could she imagine herself holding the sunglasses that now rested in her hands. Thoughtlessly, she put the sunglasses on, then grinned.

She cleaned up nicely. One couldn't go as far as to call her gorgeous, but she was a far cry from the gangly teenager that helped saved the world a couple of years ago. Her body had yet to fill out more, but part of that was because living on the street didn't supply a constant flow of food.

However, she did manage a slight once over courtesy of a certain red haired Turk.

"Well, boys?" Yuffie asked in her best no nonsense voice, placing her hands on her hips. "What are you waiting for?"

Reynold stood at his balcony overlooking the run-down city he knew his company was destroying. It used to be such a pretty, touristy town, too. A small, feral grin curled his lips as he ran his almost claw-like fingernails across the railing of the balcony.

Shinra had nothing on him.

"Rufus once said," the stout President started, the nails in his right hand digging grooves into the cement. His left hand was still behind his back.

He startled the two guards standing watch by the door, both with the beginning of his speech and with the fact that his nails were strong enough to break through the railing, "that the way to deal with his subjects effectively was to rule through fear. Unlike his father, the late President Shinra, who ruled through money. Unfortunately, both their plans failed, and they were both killed. Pathetic.

"Me, on the other hand, I plan to rule by scheming. Money, if necessary, and of course, a great deal of fear. However, if you mix those two together," he grinned, a sinister grin that would have sent the guards running if they had seen it, "and add in the heir to Wutai.." He interrupted himself with a sharp bark of laughter that was edged with hysteria. Clutching his sides, he doubled over and continued to laugh, the shrill, high-pitched sound causing the guards to rock back and forth on their heels nervously.

As suddenly as the laughter started, though, it stopped. Reynold spun around and shot that Cheshire grin at one of the guards. "Tell Reno that he is to share his room with Miss Kisaragi until we can open up a new room. Tell him to make sure she's comfortable."

The first guard was unimportant. Her name was Anne, and she had no immediate plans for the future. All she cared about was that this month's paycheck would be enough to pay off the bill for her apartment. More significantly, though, she was not the one Reynold was directing his orders to.

The other guard, whom Reynold had grinned at, was named Sam. There was a wife and two kids waiting miserably for him in their two bedroom apartment so they could start their evening meal. Sam planned to send both his kids to college so they could earn a better living than this shit-life he had, then he planned on moving to Costa Del Sol with his lovely little wife. He planned on making love to her every night until they couldn't make love anymore, in recompense for all those times he had to work night shift. He planned on living to be a ripe old age of sixty-two; there was no way in hell he would exceed that mark, either. Old homes in that day and age were just a slow form of euthanasia.

In order for him to carry out those plans, though, he would have to be lap-dog to the President for another two years. Sighing, he saluted, then turned around to find the hapless Reno.

"Oh, and, before you go.." Sam looked over his shoulder at Reynold, awaiting the next order, "..make sure to remind Reno that it is his job to not let her escape. If she does.."

The safety hatch clicked from Reynold's gun, and before Sam could picture his lovely wife and his two kids, his blood was splattered against the wall behind him and there was a bullet in the left hemisphere of his brain. Another one entered his heart, and Sam ceased to exist.

"If she does.." Reynold looked down at poor Sam, then clicked the lock back on his gun. He looked at Anne, who's face had taken on a mask of horror. The paternal smile that was plastered on Reynold's lips was ruined by the smear of Sam's blood on his cheek. "You. Go brief Reno."

He turned back around and leaned against the railing, the smile never leaving his lips. "And please, send someone up to clean this awful mess, could you?"

Payment forgotten, Anne turned and fled the balcony. She would carry out his orders, no doubt, but for a brief moment, Anne saw the big picture with shocking clarity. Even though Avalanche destroyed the first dictatorship, there would be no end.

Reynold would make sure of it.

Yuffie looked down.

Then she looked further down.


Standing in the glass elevator on the outside of Reynold's building was impressive. It was probably as impressive as Shinra's elevator, but Yuffie had never set foot in any of Shinra's buildings, so she was unable to make a comparison. It hadn't even entered to ask one of the three Turks surrounding her.

It also didn't occur to her that the crummy room they were in was on the top floor, and not the bottom. For some reason, she thought they were in the basement.

The city surrounding Reynold's building had the remnants of a once beautiful tourist trap. Yuffie recognized all the symptoms of a once beautiful city now destroyed, because it looked exactly how Wutai did after their war with Shinra.

Shinra. She placed her hand against the cool glass of the elevator and was suddenly overwhelmed with the feeling of being a hypocrite. Or at the very least, a traitor.

Well, if anything, it isn't my fault.

She jumped about a foot and whirled around when the elevator suddenly jerked to a halt and opened. Looking up, she frowned. They weren't on the right floor.

"A little jumpy?" Reno asked, his voice once again falling into the mocking quality. "I would be too." He leaned against the window opposite the doors, then raised his eyebrows when a breathless, dark haired guard came charging in. When she saw Reno, her face registered surprise, then relief.

Out of unconscious habit, Yuffie already had one of her shurikens out and rolling it between her fingers. The frightened girl looked harmless, but there was blood on her shoes and the bottom of her pant legs. There was the possibility that it was her who injured (or killed) the owner of that blood, and Yuffie wasn't about to take any chances.

The elevator closed and resumed it's descent.

Anne straightened herself up, looking at all three of the Turks. Her eyes came to Reno last, and stayed there. Seeming to muster all her energy and forgotten pride, she said, "Mr. Reno of the Turks, President Reynold has sent me with the orders that Miss Yuffie of the Turks will be sharing a room with her until a new room will be opened."

A whole wave of emotions crashed on both Yuffie and Reno's faces, ranging from shock to disbelief.




"And," Anne continued, ignoring the two outbursts, "you are to make sure she is comfortable."

The elevator stopped at the fifteenth floor. Anne turned around and looked out with unseeing eyes, before turning around again and locking eyes on Reno. Reno looked disgusted and appalled, but more importantly, shocked silent.

Anne stuck a foot in the doorway to keep the elevator from closing.

"One more thing. You are to make sure she won't escape, or the consequences will be.." She stopped, then looked at the blood on her shoes. For a long moment, she stayed that way, then tears welled up in her eyes and she looked back up at Reno.

"The word 'dire' doesn't do the consequences justice."

They exited the elevator, Anne watching them with eerily unseeing eyes until the doors separated them and the elevator started climbing back down.

The four of them stood in a rather comical looking line facing the elevator, Reno starting it and still having a shell-shocked expression to his face. He turned to his right and looked down, at the same time Yuffie lifted her head to look at him. They met eyes.

"I AM NOT SHARING A ROOM WITH YOU!" they cried in unison.

"You probably snore!"

"I snore?! Princesses don't snore! You probably snore!"

"I do not!"

"They sound like four-year-olds," Elena observed, watching Reno and Yuffie with wide eyes. She was at Yuffie's right, and at her right, Rude ended the line. He was examining the two bickering from over Elena's head.

Rude nodded sagely at her comment.

"Forget about snoring, you'll probably try to molest me in my sleep!" Yuffie turned to face Reno to grant herself more access in the yelling, balling her fists at her sides. Reno spun heel to face her.

"Molest you?!" He threw his hands up in disbelieving disgust. "You! Who would want to molest a skinny little brat like you?!"

"A pervert, that's who!" Yuffie shot back.

"Not even a pervert would want to touch you!"

Elena's lips twitched, and she had to cover her mouth with her hands to stop a laugh. It wasn't every day you saw Reno get so worked up. Especially not over a girl.



"So, Rude." Elena turned and faced her bald companion, lips still twitching in amusement. Rude was smiling slightly. "What say we leave these two to get to know each other and go get something to eat?"

Rude nodded, then threw a curt wave at Reno and Yuffie. Still smiling slightly, he walked away from them, Elena trailing close behind him.

The two squabbling Turks didn't even notice.

It was fifteen more minutes before the two of them quit arguing, and another ten minutes before Reno led Yuffie to his room. It took another five minutes for them to actually get into the room, but that time it wasn't because of an argument. Reno had somehow misplaced his key, and it took him several minutes to find it.

Needless to say, Yuffie was exhausted by the time they got into his room.

His room was a mess, but she wasn't surprised. After all, it was only a couple.. hours? minutes? since she was last in the room. Truthfully, she couldn't care less if it were a mess or if it were clean, just as long as it had a bed. She sighed and leaned against the door after Reno shut it and bolted it.

Reno ignored her and walked into his bathroom, stripping off his shirt and tossing it over his shoulder. To his surprise, the shirt came back and whapped him on the head, before falling to the ground with a muffled flutter. He blinked in mild surprise, then whirled around the shout something accusing and rather insulting to Yuffie. The comment caught in his throat, though, when he saw her already (he hadn't even heard her move) sleeping peacefully on his bed.

His bed.

He looked at her for a few more moments, then walked back into his bathroom. After a few moments he silently exited the bathroom and walked up to the bed. He smiled almost fondly down at her, then reached up and shoved her off his bed.


Okay, so maybe she wasn't asleep yet. Yuffie landed unceremoniously on her rump, her eyes impossibly wide. She had nearly been asleep, and being woken from it that brutally was making her heart pound painfully against her ribcage.

Scrambling to her feet, she shot an accusing glance down at the lanky person now inhabiting the bed she had previous claimed. He grinned up at her, arms folded behind his head and feet crossed, somehow managing to look completely relaxed but completely alert at the same time. Yuffie counted to ten silently in her head, then put her hands on the bottom part of the bed.

"Don't even think about it, brat," Reno threatened, eyes widening.

Letting out a small grunt and crouching down, she flipped the bed over. It was easier than she thought it would be.

Reno let out a string of cuss words as the bed and he landed with a resounding thump, muffled only by the piles of clothing littering Reno's floor. Before he could regain his composure, though, Yuffie was dragging the small bed away.

Reno surged to his feet, and the two glared at each other predatorily from over the upside down bed.

His eyes narrowed.

She pulled out her shurikens.

He pulled out his nightstick.

"En gardé!" Yuffie shouted, then lunged at Reno.

She had always wanted to say that.

The two other Turks made a small detour and passed Reno's door as they walked back to their rooms. Actually, Elena had insisted on it, wanting to see how Yuffie and Reno were coping.

A rather formidable sounding crash was what she got for an answer. Her and Rude glanced at each other, then Elena raised an eyebrow.

"Want to bet one of them will end up killing the other by the end of the night?"

"You're on."

"What the hell do you think you're doing?!" Reno shouted as he pushed at Yuffie, who was clutching one of the bed's legs with a vice like grip. "This is my bed and my room and I'm boss!"

"As if I care!" Yuffie growled back, tightening her grip. "Learn to share, you stupid bugger!"

"No! Take the damn floor, for crying out loud!" Reno grabbed her around the waist from behind and tried to pull her off. "Let go!"

"You let go!" Yuffie cried back. Somehow, he lifted her from the ground, then made a grunting noise of surprise when he realized she had taken the bed up with her. It bent and groaned, the other half stuck partially under Reno's cabinet. Unfortunately for them, they didn't notice.

Damn cheap beds.

"Just let go, already!" Reno shouted, increasing his efforts. The bed groaned, and there was a splintering crack. Unfortunately for Reno, though, he was paying more attention to the tearing pain in his back from lifting Yuffie and the bed at the same time.

Yuffie, however, did notice the crack. She frowned as Reno tightened his grip around her waist, thus crushing a few of her ribs in the process. The bed let out a shrill creak, and Yuffie noticed a long crack making its way across the bed's support. She blinked, then shrugged.

"Whatever you say, Reno-baby." With that being said, she let go of the bed. And, like a strained rubber-band being released, Yuffie and Reno went flying. Reno landed painfully on his back and broke Yuffie's fall, his arms still wrapped around her waist. The defeated bed gave up and snapped down the middle, collapsing in a splintered heap.

Yuffie twisted her head around to glare at Reno. He glared right back at her. She rolled off him and landed on all fours, then they both swung their heads to look at the remnants of the bed. At the same time, both found that the mattress was still intact.

Resume chaos.

Yuffie sighed and glared up at the ceiling. Her 'roommate' had won their little one-on-one and was currently curled up peacefully on the mattress. However, she was able to stake claim on the blanket and one of the pillows, so she wasn't complaining.

"I hope you freeze," she grumbled.

Too much.

"Will you just shut up and go to sleep already?" Reno snapped back, rolling on to his stomach and burying his face in his arms. For a moment, she seemed to obey him, then there was a rustling of cloth.

"I can't," she whispered, not wanting to wake Reno's neighbors. They deserved sleep, what with all the noise she and Reno had subjected to them earlier.

"Well, count sheep or something and quit bugging me!"

Yuffie fell silent for a few moments, then she sighed. "Did you have a room like this when you worked back at Shinra?"

Reno let out a long breath when he realized he wasn't going to be sleeping anytime soon, then put his arm under his head so that he could look at her. "Yeah, but they made us pay for it." He glared at her. "Lucky for you it's different here and I didn't have to pay for anything."

"Damage repairs.."

"..will be coming out of your paycheck," Reno finished for her, then ducked back under his arm. "Now go back to sleep. Or at least let me sleep. I have class tomorrow."


Reno groaned, wondering if he could pull a few strings to get Yuffie a job as an interrogator. She sure as hell asked enough questions.

"Yes, Yuffie, just because I'm a Turk doesn't mean I don't have to go to classes."

Yuffie pushed herself up, clearly surprised at this prospect. "I didn't know that. Did they have classes in Shinra, too? Is it like a highschool?"

Reno wondered if he could rip out her vocal cords without killing her. "Yes, they had it in Shinra, and no, it's not like highschool. They offer several different kinds of classes, and you have to take at least four throughout the year. It's mandatory for anyone who works here, before you ask."

"What kinds of classes?" Reno grimaced; he thought he had escaped any future questions. "And what days?"

"A whole shit-load of different classes, and it depends on what you take!" Reno snapped irritably. Yeah, she'd make a great interrogator. Or maybe even a torturer. "Will you just go to sleep already? I'll give you the list of classes and course descriptions tomorrow, okay?" He almost sounded like he was begging, but he couldn't help it. It was late, and he was tired.

Yuffie fell silent, frowning. Taking classes didn't sound fun. She was sorely tempted to ask him how long they were a day, but the look he was giving her made her reconsider. She sighed, then finally closed her eyes.

"You finally going to sleep, brat?" Reno asked tiredly. She nodded almost imperceptibly. Making a small sound of relief, he gratefully closed his eyes.

"Hey, Reno?"

"Go to sleep."

"Will I have to start classes tomorrow, too?"

"Go to sleep or get out of my room!"

.:end chapter one:.