The Cry of the Planet Chapter 9
The Night Before
By Edyn Cross
It was the night before the departure to Nibelheim on the Western Continent and Vincent spent this evening as he did every other: Hanging out at the bar across the street from Shinra Inc., having a few drinks, and watching the other Turks get completely shit-faced. The bar was dimly lit, mostly by the neon beer signs and the glow the television broadcasting the Chocobo racing championship live at the Gold Saucer. This time, the Turks drank more heavily than usual, saying their temporary good-byes to Vincent before he left on assignment.
"So I says to him," Devon slurred. "No slanty-eyed Wutainese punk tells ME where the beer shit in the buckwheat."
"It's 'bear shit in the buckwheat,' you retard," Jade said then took a shot of tequila.
"Goddamnit, who's tellin' the story, bitch? Damn you get on my nerves." Devon retorted and shot Jade a wink.
Devon was a well-built man with chestnut brown hair a few years younger than Vincent. He had been with the Turks almost a long as Vincent, and loved his job and the responsibilities it carries. Jade was a mere twenty-one years old and quite the blonde bombshell. She had been with the Turks only for about six months, but she was catching on fast. Jade and Devon give each other a lot of shit, but they have been carrying on a very loving relationship for a long time, even before Jade was hired as a Turk. Devon had tried to talk her out of it, lecturing about the dangers being a Turk, but his efforts were in vain as Jade so eloquently pointed out that he was calling the kettle black.
"Vince," Seth said, ignoring Devon's Pulitzer Prize winning story, "I bet you're excited to be leaving now, huh?"
"Why's that?" Vincent asked drinking his beer.
"I hear there's a super fine chick that's one of the scientists going," Seth said making the hourglass female figure with his hands. "You know, those educated chicks don't get out much, maybe you'll be able to teach HER a few things."
Vincent laughed and almost spit out his beer, "Pervert. I'm not interested, I'm just hoping for some gun action."
Seth smirked, "Damn man, I don't see why you just don't make love to that gun of yours, sounds like that's all you're going get."
"Hmm, now why didn't I think of that? I suppose I could Just a little " Vincent joked rubbing his holster.
"Eww! I knew it!" Seth laughed.
The waitress approached their table looking very tired. "Can I get y'all another round?"
"Yeah," Jade responded. "And can you get me one of those bright pink fruity-slushy drinks that have those little umbrellas in it?"
"Sure, anything else?" She looked over the Turks.
"Nope, that's all right, sweetness, just like you." Seth winked at the waitress and patted her ass once like a ball player congratulating his team mate.
The waitress just turned and left to get the drinks muttering something about the Turks none of them could catch.
"Now look what you did," Jade almost yelled. "They're gonna spit in our drinks!"
"Nah," Devon replied. "They know better. It's always like this here."
The Turks spent the rest of the night bantering and bullshitting with each other like it was a trained art. Finally, the bar was getting ready to close and the last call for drinks was announced. As usual, Seth was slobbering drunk, but Vincent held his liquor like a professional. Jade and Devon finished their drinks and grabbed their navy suit jackets. The two Turks pulled Seth out of his chair, put his suit jacket on for him, and each took an arm supporting him while he was in his world of alcoholic haze. Vincent put his jacket on, took out his wallet, and paid for the nights drinking events which totaled 129.00gil. It's been a lot worse, especially after assignments.
As soon as the four Turks exited the bar, the warm wind pulled at Vincent's hair, and the smell of Mako was almost thick enough to make his eyes water. The wind carried a newspaper that was caught by an updraft and the papers came apart and a single page landed at Vincent's feet. He angled his head and read the headline: Junon Coal Plant Finally Bankrupt, City Powered 100% by Mako. President Shinra Addresses the City. Vincent shook his head.
"Let's get him to his car," Jade said losing her breath while lugging Seth around with Devon. "I don't know where this guy hides his weight, but phew!"
Vincent searched Seth's suit pocket and got his keys. They went to Seth's car, Vincent unlocked and opened the door, and he helped the other two Turks load Seth into the back seat where he could sleep.
"Hide the keys under the passenger seat," Vincent said. "That way if he wakes up before he's ready to drive, he won't be able to find his keys without passing out again."
"Heh, good idea," Devon said hiding the keys under the seat. "I put them in an old milkshake cup, he's gonna have fun with this one."
"Well, I'm taking off," Vincent said taking out his own keys. "You guys take care of yourselves."
"See ya, Vince." Devon said shaking Vincent's hand.
"Bye, it won't be the same without ya," Jade said giving Vincent a small wave.
"Thanks. Later guys." Vincent said.
He got into his car, turned on the ignition and revved the engine a few times before pulling out of the bar parking lot and heading home.
"He's a good guy," Devon said looking down to Jade.
"Yeah I hope he comes back soon or the entire secretarial department will have to find someone new to swoon over," Jade giggled.
They both waved as Vincent drove by. That was the last time the Turks ever saw Vincent again.
Just as Seth was slapping the ass of a waitress in the bar across the street, Lucrecia did laps around the Shinra laboratory trying to get a few last minute preparations done before their departure tomorrow. She didn't mind being at work so late in the evening as she knew she was going to get absolutely no sleep that night anticipating the trip the next day. Gast told her it was just going to be him, Hojo and herself going, with the exception of one Turk who was assigned to keep them safe, although she felt "Turk" and "safe" should never be used together in the same sentence.
The past few days had flown by since Gast had told them of their upcoming travel plans, but it wasn't thinking about the trip that kept her mind occupied, it was Hojo. Hojo and his Experiment. Lucrecia had thought long and hard about his requesting her participation in the Experiment, as both assistant AND Specimen. She felt very flattered that Hojo trusted her enough to lay such a huge responsibility in her lap and even began to think he appreciated her mind in more than just a scientific way. What Hojo wanted for her for the Experiment was so much and she wondered if it was really hers to give.
He had told her that the Experiment should be kept a secret from everyone, even Gast, until Hojo felt that it was the right time to tell him. It would be better that way, he told her. She believed him. The Experiment was to begin after Hojo got the sample from the Ancient that he needed. She knew what was requested of her, and truthfully, it didn't bother her much. She tried telling herself that it was nothing but an Experiment and It was only a Specimen. She told herself that she couldn't and won't allow herself to be emotionally attached to the Specimen because It won't be hers. It will belong to the Experiment. It will belong to Science.
At last, Lucrecia finally got everything in the laboratory shut down and grabbed her coat and briefcase. On the way out she turned off the lights and locked the door. She took the elevator to the first floor, went through the standard security check and exited the building. She felt a bit light-headed breathing in the thick Mako air and made her way to her car, paying no attention to the man and woman across the street waving to a Shinra Inc. company car speeding down the road.
As she approached her car, she saw her reflection in the silver metal on the door. She looked at herself for a moment and turned sideways. She arched her back and put her hands on her hips looking thoughtfully at her side reflection. Lucrecia then put her hands on her belly and giggled softly to herself and drove home with a smile on her face the entire way.
It was only a Specimen.
Final Fantasy 7 Fanfic