Shinra Reborn Chapter 1
By Dan Schmidt
Reno of the Turks kicked some debris out of the way. He couldnt believe what had happened to the Shinra building in just three weeks. This place used to be the headquarters of the most powerful company in the world. Now, it wasnt even good enough for the people of the slums. Reno stood on the 68th floor, next to Rude, who was using a door decoder. They were trying to get to the top two floors of the Shinra building. No one had seen the 69th and 70th floors since Heideggers death. Elena was at a computer, which Reno was amazed still worked, trying to figure out the amount of damage done, and how much it would cost to repair it.
Rude was sweating as he worked at the door decoder. He had always been loyal to Shinra, but to see the company in this much disarray scared him. The most powerful corporation in the world had been reduced to a bunch of pitiful warlords, fighting each other to see who controlled Shinra. None of them control Shinra, Rude thought, Shinra doesnt exist anymore.
Elena was also sweating. She had been working for hours now. Shinra computers systems were not easily broken into. Her fingers were aching with cramps, but she worked as if she was possessed. She glanced at Reno. Reno had sat down against a wall, and was dozing off.
"Reno! Wake up!" she yelled.
Reno jumped up with a start. "Sorry," he said, "I-I must have fallen asleep. This is pretty boring."
"Then get up here and type!" Elena yelled, "My fingers are about to fall off!"
Just then, the computer beeped. Elena looked over at it, and saw that she has successfully broken into the network.
"Nevermind," she said.
She sat down, and looked at the screen. The screen was fuzzy, probably the result of loose cables.
"Oh man. Itll take atleast 107 million gil to repair this place. We dont have that kind of money."
"Elena, who said we were going to repair it? I have no intention of rebuilding Shinra, and I doubt Rude does either," Reno said.
"But ." Elena said, "But what about us? What are we going to do?"
"I dont know what were gonna do," Reno said, "But I hope to maybe find some clues on these top two floors."
"Yes sir," Elena said. Reno could tell that she was not a happy camper. But, there was nothing he could do. He had no intention of leading Shinra. He hadnt the money or the skills. He was a Turk, and he enjoyed this work.
"Almost got it!" Rude called from the door.
Rude paused. He wasnt exactly sure if he wanted to see the top two floors.. He had been up there only twice. Once was when he and Reno were instated into the Turks. The second time was when they had captured Cloud, Barret, Aeris, Tifa, and Red XIII. Back when Shinra was the top corporation in the world, back when President Shinra ran things.
He thought Rufus had been a good president, but not as good as his father. President Shinra had led Shinra for nearly 20 years before his death. Rufus had been President Shinras Vice President since Rufus turned 18. Rufus had been only 28 when he became President. His inexperience had showed. Rufus did come closer to killing Sephiroth than President Shinra ever had. In fact, if it werent for Rufuss Mako Cannon, Cloud and the other wouldve never been able to get inside the Crater and defeat Sephiroth.
But that was the past. Rude had to concentrate on the present.
The door decoded beeped. The code had been deciphered.
"Door unlocked!" Rude called out.
"Excellent work, Rude," Reno said, "Lets see whats left of the 69th and 70th floors."
"Wait for me," Elena said. She shut down the computer and hurried to the door.
Rude pushed against the door.
"Its stuck," he said.
"Here, let me help you," Reno said. They both pushed against the door.
The door creaked, and slowly they opened it. About halfway, they stopped to take a break. Then, they continued to push it open. Elena watched on, trying not to laugh as two grown men tried desperately hard to open a door.
Elena had found the switch that would open the door automatically, but she was enjoying watching Reno and Rude try to open it.
Finally, they gave it one last shove, and entered the 69th floor.
Reno stood in the doorway in absolute shock. He remember the top floors when Sephiroth had killed President Shinra.
This was far worse.
The place was an absolute wreck.
Computer monitors were everywhere, most of them smashed. Desks were fried, and split into giant splinters. A few dead Shinra executives lied on the floor. The expensive carpet was burnt and full of holes. Diamond Weapon had hit this part of the building the hardest. Chunks of metal and concrete were missing for the walls. One wall had a person-sized hole blown into it.
"Wow, this is bad," Elena said.
"You said it," Reno said.
Rude didnt say anything. He just stood there in shock.
"Hey, look at this," Reno said. He pointed to a piece of red metal.
"It came from the Proud Clod!" Elena said.
"Yeah, it did," Reno said, "Did Weapon destroy it?"
"Mustve," Rude said, breaking his silence, "Either that, or Cloud and his friends."
"No way," Reno said, "Cloud and his friends couldnt have destroyed it. The Proud Clod had enough power to stop Weapon."
"Yeah," Elena shot back, "And Cloud and his friends defeated Diamond Weapon."
"They didnt destroy it, Rufus used the Sister Ray to destroy it."
"Maybe the Proud Clod wasnt as powerful as we thought it was."
"Will you two stop it!" Rude yelled. It was the first time Reno or Elena had ever heard Rude yell.
"Lets just check the 70th floor, okay?" Rude asked.
"Alright, lets check the 70th floor."
Elena just gazed at Rude with a surprised look on her face.
And they thought the 69th floor was bad.
The 70th floor was twice as bad as the 69th. Huge chunks of the wall were missing. A cold breeze was blowing into the room through the holes in the wall. The glass window behind Rufuss desk was shattered, and glass was all over the room. Most of the balcony outside was blown away. All that was left of the balcony was jagged edges, and a large chunk near the door. Rufuss desk lied in two pieces on the floor. Rude went outside on the remains of the balcony. Reno and Elena lifted up Rufuss desk. Underneath it was Rufus.
Rufuss clothes were completely black, and full of burns. Blood was dried on Rufuss arms and head. Reno leaned closer. He grabbed Rufuss arm. It was still warm. Reno put his ear up against Rufuss mouth. A small breath escaped Rufuss lips.
"Hes, Hes ..alive .," Renos voice trailed off.
"What!" Elena yelled.
"Elena, come here and see for yourself."
She walked over to Reno. Elena placed her hand on Rufuss arm. It was warm..
"He is alive," she said.
* * *
It was cold on the balcony. Rude wanted to go back inside. He turned for the door, when a patch of green caught his eye. Rude threw some rocks out of the way, and hopped over to the patch of green. It was cloth, from someones clothing. Rude heard a quiet moan. He lifted a large rock, and saw Heidegger underneath it. Heidegger was sitting in the remains of a chair. The back of the chair was half-gone, and most of the padding on it was gone. Heideggers left leg was bent at an odd angle. It was probably broken. Dried blood covered Heideggers forehead. The chair teetered about eight inches from the edge of the balcony. Rude spotted a canteen near his feet. A candy bar wrapper lay next to the canteen. Heidegger moved slightly.
"Heidegger? Sir?" Rude said.
"Rude?" Heidegger said. Then, Heideggers eyes closed, and he sent into unconsciousness. Rude ran back inside the building. Reno and Elena were looking at Rufuss body.
"Reno! Elena! Its Heidegger! Hes out on the balcony!" Rude said.
"Rude, shut up! Rufus is alive!" Elena said.
"He is?" Rude asked.
"Yep," Reno answered, "Just barely alive."
"Well, thats not all the good news youll hear today," Rude said, "Outside, on the balcony, Heidegger is there. And hes alive, too!"
"Heideggers alive!" Reno said.
"Yes," Rude answered.
"Well dont just stand there," Elena said, "Get some paramedics! Get medical help! We need to get Rufus and Heidegger to the nearest hospital!"
* * *
Reno, Elena, and Rude arrived at a hospital in Midgar about twenty minutes later. They drove one of Shinras trucks. Heidegger and Rufus were carefully placed in the back. Reno was afraid that he had accidentally broken Rufuss arm when they loaded him onto the truck.
Reno got out of the truck, and entered the lobby. He rang the bell several times, before an attendant got to him.
"Can I help you, sir?" she said.
"Yes, I need some medical help. Ive got two seriously injured people in my truck outside!"
"Okay, sir. Ill need you to fill out these forms." She handed Reno a thin stack of papers.
"Look, you dont get it. These people are severely wounded. If you dont get to them right away, there will be trouble."
"Sir, it is required by law that you fill out these forms."
"Whose law is that?" Reno asked angrily.
"Why, its Shinras law. We dont follow the rules of Reeves new company. We still go by old Shinra law."
"Well, these two injured people happen to be President Rufus, and Heidegger, the Head of Shinra Public Safety Maintenance!"
"Ha, good one. Lying wont get you into the emergency room any faster."
"Do you know who I am? Im Reno, of the Turks! If you dont get me some medical help, Im authorized to take things into my own hands!"
"Reno of the Turks?" She gazed at him for a few seconds.
"You are Reno of the Turks!" she said.
"Yes, I am. Now get me a medical team!"
"Yes sir, right away!"
Within twenty minutes, Rufus and Heidegger were each given medical care and put in hospital rooms. Reno, Rude, and Elena oversaw all that was happening.
Heideggers condition was stable, and he was expected to live. Rufus, on the other hand, was in critical condition. Rufus was suffering from hypothermia, and lack of water. Rufus had broken his left ankle and leg, his right arm, and had almost fractured his skull. One of Rufuss ribs had also punctured his lung. Heidegger was suffering from mild exhaustion, and had a broken left leg, a broken right wrist, and had broken a few ribs.
* * *
Reno stood over Heidegger. Heidegger had been slipping in and out of consciousness these past few hours, and Reno hoped to catch him when he woke up. Elena and Rude were exhausted, and they had called it a day. Reno told them he would be staying the night in the hospital.
Heidegger mumbled something Reno couldnt understand. Then, his eyes open, and he gazed at Reno for a second.
"Reno .?" Heideggers voice sounded weak.
"Hello, sir. You feel up for some news and a few questions?"
"I suppose so, Reno. Let me hear the news first."
"All right then," Reno began, "Meteor has been destroyed and Sephiroth is dead. Shinra is on the brink of total collapse. No new government has been formed yet, and each city is running under its own terms. Cloud Strife and his team were the ones who defeated Sephiroth. Weve been keeping tabs on them, and they seem to be trying to lead quiet, new lives."
"Hmm .well, when I recover, that will change." Heidegger managed a small smile.
"Sir, may I ask a few questions?"
"Go ahead, Reno."
"Okay, question number one: How did the Proud Clod get destroyed?"
"Well," Heidegger began, "Scarlet and I drastically underestimated Cloud and his friends. They destroyed the Proud Clod."
Reno was a little surprised, but not much. "Okay, question number two:
How did you survive the Proud Clods destruction?"
"Heh, Scarlet and I were cocky, but not insane. We installed an ejection seat incase the Proud Clod was ever defeated. After the Proud Clods systems went critical, Scarlet went nuts. She screamed, and pounded on the computers. Meanwhile, I snuck into the ejection seat and escaped. I didnt know how far the ejector seat would take me, and I was surprised that it took me to the top of the Shinra building. When Meteor struck Midgar, a huge chunk of rock smashed my leg. It snapped the bone instantly, but it also kept me from being blown off the Shinra building."
"Oh yes, I have some more good news," Reno said, "President Rufus is alive."
"Rufus is alive?"
"Yes, we found him alive in the Shinra building, along with you."
"Whats his condition?"
"Hes pretty bad, he might not pull through. If he doesnt, youll be leading Shinra."
"Well," Heidegger was unsure on the thought of becoming President, "If I have to do it, then I will."
Reno smiled. "I knew you would do it, sir."
"Have Elena and Rude gone home?" Heidegger asked.
"Yeah, they were tired."
"You should do the same, Reno. Youre a mess. Youve done nothing but watch over me all day. Go get some rest."
"Very well, sir. Good night." Reno turned to leave.
"Oh Reno, one more thing."
Heideggers eyes narrowed, and he suddenly seemed very, very serious. "I have an assignment for you."
"That is ?" Reno asked.
Heidegger pronounced his next words slowly and clearly.
"Kill Cloud," he said, with a mark of vengeance in his voice.
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