one passing night

the evening is spread out against the sky


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1st mission ☀ fun in the sun
brand name black sunglasses
tasercopter wrote in onepassingnight
[Reno's one of the hardest working women in Edge, and lately it seems like there's been nothing but work in her life, especially since the city got trashed by those freaks. So when she dreams tonight, her mind drifts away to somewhere quite different: the sunny shores of Costa del Sol--not the most exciting place, usually, but a far cry from the gray skies and grayer buildings of the city.]

#1:
[Miles of pure, untouched, sandy coastline--so tempting to mar it with beer bottles and cigarettes, which is exactly what Reno has done, putting out all her cigarettes in the sand and leaving the green and golden-brown bottles strewn around her, gleaming in the sun. She herself is stretched out on a towel, wearing a black bikini, sunglasses on her face. She's twisted one of her bikini straps around to form a makeshift holster for her Electro-Mag Rod. Because this is a dream, there's no need to worry about the redhead's nemesis: sunburn. She could lie out here all day without turning so much as pink. Lounging beside her is another woman, but at some point she gets up and wanders off. Reno grunts and lets her go, lighting another cigarette and slipping it between her lips. She's sure Rude'll be back later.]

#2:
[There's a party on the shore: a bonfire, people singing and dancing. Reno isn't exactly attending. Instead, she's slinking around in the dark, setting charges in the sand. Once she's done her work, and the festivities are surrounded, she leaves the revelers behind. When she gets some distance between herself and the party, she turns back, just in time to see the explosives go off and the sand go up. And to hear the people start screaming. She grins.]

#3:
[Now Reno, still in her bikini, has engaged in a heated bout of fisticuffs with a large (and suspiciously attractive) young man. She has a black eye and her fists are bloodied, but she clearly is enjoying herself, and the man is in much worse shape. He's covered in bruises, and his nose is bleeding, but she shows no sign of relenting.]

[[OOC: Feel free to encounter Reno at any point during her dream.]]

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[he's sitting on an abandoned beach chair, one leg drawn up to rest an arm over it in the dark. Don't ask how he got there, he just is. And while he was enjoying the quiet and solitude away from the celebration suddenly the celebration's gotten a lot noisier.

Which, given the fact Reno had just come slinking over somehow seems about right. Pale eyebrows go up the smallest bit.]


I thought you were a lot less active on your days off.

[She turns away from her enjoyment of the mayhem at the sound of that voice, frowning. Oh, great. Just what she needed. A handful of pain-in-the-ass. When did he get there? She rolls her eyes at him.]

What I do on my days off is none of your business. The things you don't know about me could fill a fucking book. [Wait, no, that's not enough.] Two books.

What're you doing here, anyway? Don't you have some packages to handle? [Then Reno has to laugh at her own bad joke, which she does for a moment or two before frowning again.] I think you've got a thing for ruining my vacations.

The things I already know about you and wish I didn't fill three.

[he's got no problem calmly snarking right back. His mind's been drifting though, only paying Reno half attention (as usual) and so it takes him a minute to -

cue the slight eye widening and a flat mental 'okay. That's new'.

How to point this out delicately? Oh, right. This is Cloud.]


Didn't realize you'd turning into a girl since last time though.

Oh right, cause you can only read those picture books. I know the big words give you trouble, but maybe your kids can help you out.

[But then she frowns at what else he has to say. Uh, what is he even talking about?]

They must be real short picture books, too, cause you can't be quick on the uptake if you missed all this. [With a quick gesture of both hands sweeping simultaneously downward, she indicates herself.] Someone ought to get you a biology book instead. [She chuckles. Ha ha, it's funny cause Cloud is stupid.]

[there's a brief pause in which he debates making the dry comment in response to her 'all this' and chooses instead to focus on what's really important. That being the fact that not only does Reno have boobs but he - she seems to be under the impression she's always had them.

She hasn't even groped herself the way Cloud would assume would be the next step if Reno suddenly went female.

huh. Female Reno.

Cloud bets she'd kick male Reno's ass in a fight. Now that would be funny. Focus, Strife.]


Was Genesis male or female in your world?

Uh. [This was not the kind of conversation she'd expected to find herself having with Cloud. What's with him? Just to be on the safe side, she slips her Electro-Mag Rod from its makeshift bikini strap holster and warily approaches him. In the light coming from the resort town behind them, one can see the scars on her pale skin. One in particular, crossing her ribcage, looks like it could have been made by a very large sword. Another, covering much of her shoulder and upper arm, might have been caused by some kind of powerful blast. She doesn't seem to mind the scars at all--she has no hesitation about showing them, and actually, she thinks they look cool.] You get hit on the head or something? Why you asking about that guy?

He is a guy. Yeah, everybody thought he was dead, but I figured all that out. [This Reno may have technically discovered Deepground, but she's giving herself a bit too much credit here. She can't give up the chance to mention one of her intelligence-gathering accomplishments, however. She smirks.] What's the matter, Cloud? You need me to give you a tits-or-dick refresher course?

[Cloud can see just fine in the dark thanks to the mako and he sees that rod coming loose. He's not worried about it, not yet at least. Even on a bad day, he's still faster than Reno but he's not particularly interested in getting into a scuffle with the Turk either. Reno fights dirty and he doubts a sex change has changed that.

Cloud thinks scars are pretty cool too. Except when they're unwelcome reminders.

And if he needed any refresher course about the differences in the sexes, he's got Tifa. Which would be more than enough. Not the point though.]


I remember Genesis being male. But not long ago I met a female Genesis. I know you, but the you I know is male. And he doesn't wear a bikini. At least not that I've been unlucky enough to have to find out about. What's Rude? Girl or guy?

They cloned Genesis like a million times, right? [Science is not Reno's strong suit, but she knows they were doing a lot of stuff with his genes. She's not too concerned about pondering the mysteries thereof, though.] Why not make a girl one? They probably did. I don't know. Ask Reeve about that shit.

[She's more interested in the idea of a male version of herself, though Cloud is clearly going crazy. Hmm, when genetically manipulated freaks go crazy, it's never a good thing. Well, she'll keep an eye on him and kill him if he seems like a dangerous lunatic. (Somehow, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, she is sure she could accomplish that.) Right now, he only seems harmlessly stupid.] I don't blame you for fantasizing about me, but you're taking it kinda far. I would make an amazingly hot guy, though. [She's just going to picture that for a minute. Yes, definitely hot. She smiles.]

So, you do need a refresher course. Okay, I'll give you the list. I've got tits, Rude has tits, Rufus has a dick, Tseng has a dick, you have a dick-- [She pauses.] At least, I think. You don't have tits, anyway. Reeve has a-- [She's just going to keep going until someone stops her.]

[the cloning a female Genesis makes as much sense as anything else so Cloud can accept that. Still doesn't explain how Reno got curves. Maybe Hojo used to put something in the water cooler on the sly. Because it still sounds like Reno in all his - her annoying glory. He lets the comment about fantasizing go right over his head though. Wouldn't matter if Reno was the hottest body out there, he'd still have his personality to drive everyone off with. Female or male.

It does bring up the disturbing question of how a male and female Reno would react to each other though.

The look he gives Reno as she starts her list though is flat and he makes no move to stop the red head. One - because he's curious how many differences there are in gender between what he knows and what Reno's going on about but mostly two - because he knows it annoys Reno when people don't rise to the bait. Besides, Reno doesn't know that many people. The Turks are kind of inclusive. Cloud wonders how long it's going to take her to start making up people just to keep going with her list.

Cloud's got alllll night lo-

The pain hits like someone just drove a tent peg through his arm with a mallet and he hunches forward protectively instinctively, clutching at the diseased arm. The sound he makes is almost too quiet to be heard over the distant wash of waves on the shore but his jaw is so locked that he's afraid he's going to shatter some teeth in the process.

Damn it. Now's a bad time.]

[For one thing, Reno has an amazing personality. For another thing, Reno wishes a guy version of herself was here right now instead of Cloud. That would be, like, the perfect man. As Cloud is clearly not.

It is seriously annoying when Cloud doesn't rise to the bait, but it is just going to make Reno try harder, because she doesn't give up that easily.]


Reeve has tits. [Now she's decided to start lying.] Elena has a dick. [She's just ignoring the fact that Elena is clearly a girls' name, so that doesn't exactly make sense.] Tifa has a dick. Barret has tits. [Don't laugh, Reno, don't laugh. She manages to seem fairly sincere, somehow. Yet she breaks off when Cloud hunches over.]

Hey, what's your problem? [She sighs. Is she really going to have to kill Cloud for going crazy? She guesses that might be fun. She leans forward nosily, Electro-Mag Rod at the ready.] What's up with that? [Her Rod seems to be dangerously close to prodding him. Cloud can't be sick again. The Turks already cured everyone of Geostigma (that is, according to Reno, they did).]

[Cloud's sword is suddenly clear of where it was resting behind him, forming a very definitive barrier between himself and Reno's trigger happy tendencies, his hand still on the hilt in warning. But it's the flat of the blade facing the red head, tip buried in the sand, the giant sword almost serving as a shield, while Cloud breathes through his teeth, left arm useless at his side. He's still sitting on the deck chair. There's too much pale green in the blue of his eyes but it's definitely a Cloud glare. And the voice is definitely Cloud's low, emotionless fighting voice when he states:]

You can back up now, Reno.

[Reno does move back. A little. She's not going to attack (yet), but her Rod comes up, and she's irritated. What's all this about? Not that it's so weird that Cloud's touchy and moody, but what's wrong with him?]

You are touchy. Relax. If I'd wanted to kill you, I could've done it easy when you passed out in your stupid flower church and we had to carry you out. [She's a little defensive about the flowers, since she couldn't seem to stop stepping on them, even when she tried. This time, though, she could blame it on the Remnant.

Rufus said, "Don't kill Cloud," but she's not going to mention that part. It's the general ShinRa consensus he should be kept around. In case of Sephiroth, get Cloud off his ass and all that.]


Still trying to figure out how you're that small and that heavy. [He might not really be that short, but she has to mention it. A pause. His eyes looking all green is not a good sign.] You can't be sick. Everybody got cured.

[she backs off enough that the wash of battle fueled sharpness to his mind flickers unsteadily instead of full on bore. It lets the pain of the attack come to the fore but it's not the first initial rush and so he can concentrate on something beyond it. What Reno's saying still doesn't make sense.

The last time they were together in the church, the Turk had his goons shooting at Aerith - and they were a long way past that point. He also, to the best of his knowledge, has never been carried anywhere by Reno - thanks for small mercies. But what really pings is the 'everybody got cured'. Because unless Reno is talking about the flu that everyone at the Turk office or base or wherever they're holed up at the moment is, there's only one thing that needs curing on a level even the Turks would be aware of it.

Geostigma.]


Cured? When? How?

[It hasn't occurred to Reno yet that Cloud might be from a different time, but she's starting to question the reason for his lack of knowledge. The amnesia and/or insane thing still makes more sense, though Cloud still having Geostigma is--

--weird. Undeniably weird. So something's clearly very off here.]


You don't remember that? It just happened. [It was only a couple weeks ago, as far as she's concerned. But she'll tell him the story. She takes a deep breath and begins the tale.]

It all started when Rufus had us check out the Northern Crater to look for a cure, since we were the only people doing anything useful at the time, and that's where we found some Jenova crap. It's a good thing we did, too, otherwise those freaks would have gotten it, and we'd all be dead. So, you're welcome.

Then we asked you to help us, but you couldn't be bothered, so we were like "Fine, we'll do it ourselves", and because you were such a dumbass, there were more problems, and your kids got kidnapped by the freaks, so we had to save your ass and help you find the kids. You're welcome again.

And Rufus got abducted by the head freak while we fought the other two, but it was cool, because Rufus was playing him the whole time, and then he jumped off a building and shot Jenova with his shotgun. [Reno gives a genuine smile at this, because it was a great moment. He'd just stone cold jumped off that building.]

And after pissing and moaning a lot, you finally got off your ass and fought Sephiroth when he came back, because Geostigma is Sephiroth. Or something. [That part wasn't quite as cool.]

Oh, I forgot the part where I flew my helicopter under an overpass. I did a lot of great flying, probably saved the world.

Then everybody got cured. By--some kind of magic rain? I still don't really get that, but hey, I'm not complaining, and that's what happened.

can you imagine how even MORE confusing he'd be in ACC if he remembered this dream?

[it was Reno so he didn't exactly expect what the guy - girl, what the girl said to make sense. There was a whole 'Reno filter' you had to sift everything through when Reno told his stories and Cloud have never bothered develop his well. The headache behind his eyes wasn't helping and he didn't let go of the hilt of his sword but he did hunch inward, eyes a glowing blue in the shadows of his face, eyes narrowed as he tried to make sense of whatever it was Reno was babbling about. Because she was talking about things he hadn't had happen, had no idea about. It didn't make sense unless she was drunk or lying again. And he'd never known Reno to get drunk enough to not know what was going on. Other than that, the only real flare of dangerous blue fire was when his kids getting taken was mentioned.

Freaks? The Turks found Jenova? How was there anything left of that creature to be found much less shot at? The record of his mind skipped and then scratched short.

"Sephiroth? Sephiroth is... geostigma? He came back?"

Cloud, you must now remember this important prophetic dream in the future~!

Right. Blah blah, genetic legacy in the Lifestream, blah blah. [She actually could explain that part a little more clearly, since it had to do with Rufus and she knows all about Geostigma, but she won't. It's too boring, and Cloud probably couldn't follow it, in her opinion.]

First he brought back the freaks--okay, I don't know how this worked, but he split himself up into three guys? [Uh, she really doesn't know how that happened.] One was stupid, one was vain, and one was bitchy. They all sucked.

A bunch of stuff happened, like I already said, then the bitchy one merged with the Jenova crap and turned into Sephiroth. Bitch plus Jenova equals Sephiroth? [What a pain in the ass all that had been. Explaining it almost makes her head hurt.]

You killed him again, so don't worry about it, Mr. Amnesia.

can you see him waking up yelling: suddenly it all makes sense! oh wait, no. no it still doesn't...

[actually Cloud could have kept up amazing well with the geostigma part considering the amount of digging into it he'd done since he'd brought Denzel home. It being Sephiroth's... legacy? however was new information.]

Clones.

[he mutters it, as much to himself as Reno.]

Sephiroth can control and manifest through his clones. I thought they'd all died before the Northern crater. I've seen him materialize them out of thin air.

[though he wasn't sure exactly how that had happened, just that physical limitations didn't seem to really matter to a lot of the clones. They had always been dissolving or appearing out of the floor or swooping through the air. Maybe they hadn't all died or maybe he'd found a way to make more.

That wasn't a pleasant thought considering where most of the first batch of clones had come from.

He'd also seen the clones take on the form and powers of Sephiroth, while Sephiroth himself had been safely elsewhere. The madman had also thrown his 'mother's' body parts around like confetti and made some pretty vicious monsters out of them.

This was making his head hurt. More. He scrubbed at his forehead with his free hand.

Though it would almost be a good story to tell Marlene. Three evil princesses. Though he'd have to change the wording a little on the last one...]


I killed him. Again. You think I'd remember that. And that made the... magic rain that cures the geostigma?

[did it sound any more convincing when he said it back to you, Reno. Because it sure doesn't sound that way when you say it.]

Edited at 2011-11-22 04:12 pm (UTC)

If only he'd met a more helpful person in his prophetic dream...

[It's likely Cloud could actually have kept up, but Reno (her underestimation of Cloud aside) is still too bored to explain it all, especially since it's over and done with, as far as she's concerned.]

They were like clones... But not like the other clones. Remnants. [She would agree with the "evil princesses" bit.] They had names, personalities, and they were all batshit insane. Like I said, he made them out of himself. They made some monsters and tore up the city. We're still cleaning that up.

[She shrugs.] I'm only telling you what I know. You killed him, then Rufus got better, end of story. As for the rain-- I guess it came from the Lifestream.

[It's not her fault the magic rain doesn't make any sense; if she was lying, she'd come up with something a hell of a lot more convincing than that.]

Maybe you slipped in the shower and hit your head and that's why you forgot.

Reno would have made the perfect Christmas Carol ghost

[so Cloud's got three evil princesses, one resurrected nightmare and magic rain to go on. It sounds more like something out of a fairy tale than a way to finding a cure for Denzel and the rest of the kids. Reno seems to be under the impression that he's still in the hero business too. And somehow the fact that Reno's a girl just kind of adds to the whole 'why the hell not?' feeling of this entire situation.

In his mind though, Cloud runs over his memories, carefully testing them out, feeling for weak bits or hiding blank spots. It's not easy considering his arm really wants his attention but he forces himself to focus. This wouldn't be the first time he's lost memories and if he has he needs to damn well know. There's nothing though. No blanks, no misplaced blurs, nothing but the usual fade to forgetfulness of everyday routines.

Concentrate, Cloud. Things are obviously off. Walk it through. When did things start being off? With Reno being female. His Reno is male. So maybe female Reno's Cloud -]


Maybe I'm not the same Cloud you're thinking of.

She'd have made sure that Scrooge toughened up! Instead of becoming a wuss.

[Excuse her, she is not the half-crazy Jenova'ed-up one who forgets things, she knows what she's talking about. She scoffs at this.] No, you're him all right. [That, she's sure of.] You look just like him. Talk just like him. You're touchy just like him.

See, look. [She points to her midsection, at a very noticeable scar there.] You did that, back when I was droppin' the plate, remember? [Great memory to bring up there, Reno.] I think you did this one, too. [She points at another.] And here's the one I got during Meteorfall. [Finally, she points at the large one covering her arm and shoulder.] Pretty cool, huh?

[Oh wait, back to the story.] Later on, you helped us kill that Don Corneo. Which was almost fun. Then you went and killed Sephiroth. [She's leaving out a few parts of this story, but it's too damn long.]

And later you got Geostigma and went to live in a church like a weirdo. Then Rufus was like, "Hey, help people out", but you said, "Not interested."

[Come on, Cloud, this is all quite straightforward and understandable.]

lmao I am just about dying over Reno's summary of things

[okay. He'll actually be distracted for a minute from Reno's babble, eyes moving over pale skin. Because, yeah, those are some pretty dramatic scars and looking at the one on her stomach now, he's actually impressed she survived that.

Of course, she deserved it too.

It clicks that he could call Reno on the obvious lie. Since when has Rufus ever said 'hey, help people'? Help people off a high bridge without a parachute maybe. Not to mention, Rufus is pretty dead. Exploding tower and all being a kind of an end game kind of thing.

At least the world is finally safe from boring monologues?

Back to the point though, the constant 'you did this, you did that' that he's pretty obviously NOT done is getting grating. Since there's really no sense in hiding something Reno somehow already knows about he pulls up his sleeve to reveal the bruised, darkly pus filled wounds and sacks on his arm that have rapidly been spreading up toward his shoulder for the past number of days. His voice comes out rough.]


Does this look like magic rain healed it to you?

Her years in the Turks have clearly taught her how to make clear and concise summaries!

[Clearly Cloud has underestimated her boss and his amazing exploding tower escaping abilities, but Reno hears him on the boring monologues bit (or would, if he mentioned it). She usually just thinks about something else and fakes being attentive while those are going on until Rufus gets to the direct orders part.

She has to live with those boring monologues, too.

She doesn't flinch at the sight of Geostigma, having been living in Healen Lodge with Rufus for a while before he got cured. She's got a pretty strong stomach, in any case.

Still, she frowns, because she knows Cloud got healed along with everybody else. So this isn't right at all.]


So, you didn't get a phone call from me, or nothin? I called the bar, but Tifa said you weren't there, and she gave you the message. And you drove out to Healen to see Rufus.

[Hmm.] That doesn't make sense.

[Is Cloud saying that her being a woman actually saved the world? Her vanity is not going to say no to that idea, because it is pretty cool and in line with her ideas about her own importance, but still...]

You should watch out, then, because some freaks who look like Sephiroth are gonna come visit you looking for their mom. [Heed this prophetic warning, Cloud!]

makes me wonder if her and Rufus take turns spacing on each other's talking

[not interested.

No, seriously, he's not interested in how Rufus might have survived. it saves the lazy writers from having to come up with something that could possibly make sense. He does however give Reno a look from the tops of his eyes that's the Cloud equivalent of a 'took you long enough to catch up'. At least it looks like they're finally past the whole 'nu uh' part of this conversation. He lets his sleeve drop back over the raw skin, barely wincing as the rough fabric makes contact again. He's been through much worse and besides... he thinks he kind of probably deserves it.]


Haven't talked to Tifa tonight. [and that's bad of him and he knows but... he's starting to get this horrible sick feeling in his gut that - that maybe he's not going to see her again. Or the kids. Or Seventh Heaven.

He does take Reno's warning seriously though. Reno's an elfadunk as far as Cloud's usually concerned - but she's deadly and very, very good at what she does when she's being serious. Or, he does, in Cloud's world at least. He's going to assume the same applies here despite body differences.]


The three princesses. Which one's the one that turns into Sephiroth?

[because Cloud's also pretty good at killing. And he's not above removing a threat before it can happen if he gets the chance. Maybe - in his world - he can stop Sephiroth from showing up at all. Because Cloud doesn't think he can beat the bastard with the geostigma gnawing away at him. And he's not going to count on healing rain to show up and save him either. Only Aerith could pull that off. And - she wasn't exactly around to do that kind of thing anymore, was she?]

Oh, you know they do. It's a beautiful relationship

[Yes, Cloud not listening to people sure saves the writers a lot of trouble. There's a hidden escape tunnel! It makes perfect sense! Er, somehow...]

Huh. Well, she still might call you. If you get a call from Reno, go right away, and listen to everything Rufus says, okay? [As hard as that might be to do when he's making a big speech.] And don't lock any doors. That'd be a mistake.

[An elfadunk? She would be so offended. As a matter of fact, she is the best. She's sorry she's not a genetically modified freak and relies on herself rather than weird powers!]

Kadaj does--he's the little one in charge--but any of them could, once they get the Jenova crap. What they want is to all join up together.

You've got to kill them all. [She's not going to say no to Cloud killing them before they cause all that trouble. That'd be nice, actually, because she's still dealing with the cleanup and fallout from that event. Stupid standing orders to help people. The old days are long gone.]

So good luck.

Here, you need a drink. [Suddenly, there's a glass of whiskey in her hand, and she holds it out. Clearly, a drink is what you need, Cloud.]

explains so much about Rude's silence really

[was it an inflatable tunnel, like the airlines escape chutes? HE DOESN'T WANT TO KNOW!

Hn.

[he'll reserve final judgement on whether he kills three little silver heads. He's no a hired thug - not anymore - and he doesn't kill 'just because'. But he doesn't remember clones having much personality or will of their own, being somewhere below the level of monsters in self-awareness actually and if it keeps Sephiroth from coming back than he's got priorities. His family, his friends, the rest of the Planet that Aerith died for, come before reunion slurring hoods. Cloud doesn't believe in fighting fair. He believes in fighting to win. He's also going to remain no committal on that promise of not locking doors. Especially if Reno sees fit to mention it.

He does look at the sudden drink though. did female Reno just give him something hard?]


Thanks.

[he's not a drinker but he's not going to turn one down right now either. And he suspects Reno carries the good whiskey. He takes the offered drink and then awkwardly shifts over on the seat to make room for the red head. Somehow tonight just seems like the kind of night for devolving into nursing drinks together and he doesn't doubt that Reno brought her own.]

So tell me about Barret having boobs.

[if they're going to be drinking, he might as well go all the way down in that handbasket Reno's providing.]

((ooc. you want to wrap it up for this round or was there anything else?))


Edited at 2011-11-30 12:36 pm (UTC)

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