Catching Glimpses Chapter 8
Chocobo Excrement and Wonder Woman
"Youre not the only one who can pick locks, dearie."-Dinah Selby
Dinah was awakened early the next morning by loud, insistent banging noises
on her door. She buried her head in the pillow and threw the covers over
her head. "Go away!" she moaned.
"Nope!" Reno called back cheerfully. "Rise and shine!"
Dinah raised her head blearily to look at the clock by the bedside. "Its
six oclock in the morning for Gods sake, Reno! Just let me
"Quit being so lazy!" he threw back.
Dinah barked a short, irritated laugh. "Thats rich coming from you."
"Sure, sure, whatever. Just get up! Its time to be on the move. That
is, unless you wanna miss the flight
"The what?" Dinah raised her head to look at the door.
"The flight that weve gotta catch to get to our final destination,
of course. Now are you getting up or not?" Reno answered.
He heard the shower start in reply. Reno allowed himself a triumphant grin
as he crept off. He stopped in the front lobby and crouched behind a chair.
Palmer bounced in, humming to himself and clutching a cup of tea. He sat
at his desk, sitting up high, aided by the pile of books on his chair. Reno
stuffed a fist into his mouth to keep himself from laughing as he stared
intently at Palmers cup.
"Cmon, drink it
" he hissed, breathing hard with the effort of
not laughing. He snickered softly to himself as he remembered his early morning
trip to the local chocobo stable, which was just outside of the city.
Palmer put his feet up on his desk, smiling happily. He was about to take
a sip of his tea when the phone rang. Reno cursed softly to himself unhappily,
moving around slightly to take the cramp out of his legs.
Palmer talked into the phone for quite some time, saying things like, "Well,
we have vacancies on the 17th, but not the weekend of the 29th."
Reno was swiftly getting bored, but he managed to keep his attention on the
scene in front of him by imagining Palmers reaction to what was in
his tea. What seemed like an eternity later, Palmer hung up the phone and
returned to staring happily at his tea. He slowly raised the cup to his fat
lips, and Reno tensed, sniggering softly.
Palmer drank deeply from it, almost finishing the entire cup in one large
gulp. He set the cup down hard on the desk, scalding liquid sloshing over
the edge and onto the desk and his pudgy fingers. But he didnt seem
to even notice. His eyes bulged, and his hands flew to his throat. Palmer
fell out of the chair, taking his stack of books with him. He writhed around
on the floor as his roly-poly little body jerked, gasping, his face beet
red. Finally, after spitting out what bit of the tea he hadnt swallowed,
he looked around wildly for the source of the hysterical laughter he was
hearing. Palmer felt sweat break out as he recognized the laugh.
Reno rolled out from behind the chair, roaring with laughter. "You
should have seen your
face!" he wheezed.
argh!" was all that Palmer managed to say.
Reno managed to get himself slightly under control, until he began laughing
uproariously again. "That was
better than I had hoped for!"
but you said you wouldnt play pranks on me! I paid for your
rooms!" Palmer stuttered.
"No, no," Reno corrected him after brining himself under control. "I said
I wouldnt harass you, and I havent. Have I made a single fat
joke or confronted you in any way?"
Palmer shook his head silently.
"See? There ya go! Pranks and harassment are very different, Palmer," Reno
said, his tone that of a lecturing professor.
"What was it?" Palmer asked the question he had been dreading.
"I knew how much you love animal products, like lard, so I-"
Palmer felt sick to his fat little stomach.
"-Paid a visit to the local chocobo farm this morning and picked up some
nice, fresh chocobo shit. From there, it was simple to drop it into
your tea." Reno looked pleased with himself. Palmer was turning green.
"I came here to escape from you!" Palmer wailed. "I settled down happily
with my hotel and family-"
Reno looked surprised. "You have a family?"
No, it just sounds better. All right, all right. I settled down happily
in my hotel and Ive never been so content in my life as I have these
past three years! And just when my shrink said I was gaining progress, you
show up and ruin everything again!" Palmer looked ready to burst into
Reno watched impassively. "The guilt trip aint gonna work, Palmer."
"Its not a guilt trip! Its the honest to God truth!" Palmer
"Sure. Whatever. And I havent ruined everything, have I?" Reno left
the yet unspoken. But Palmer knew it was there.
"Oh no. What else are you going to do to torture me?!" Palmer looked around
like a caged animal.
"Nothing. Jeez, dont be so paranoid. Ive gotta leave. In fact,
Im leaving as soon as Dinahs ready."
"And Dinah would be the young lady you arrived with?" Palmer asked with
"Yknow, she looks too good for you," Palmer began.
"Youve got it the wrong way around. Im too good for
her," Reno answered arrogantly.
"Nice to know you think that," Dinahs voice broke in. Both men turned
to look at her. She was leaning against the doorframe with her arms crossed
over her chest, looking on amusedly. Her wet hair had been thrown into a
messy bun. "Now if Im not mistaken, weve got to get going if
were gonna catch that flight."
"Yeah," Reno answered. Dinah detached herself from the wall and moved toward
the door. "Wait! Ive gotta get my stuff from my room!" Reno made as
if he was going to make a dash for the hallway, but Dinah held up his black
"This, and the stuff in its pockets, is the only thing you had, right?" she
"Yeah, but howd you get that?" Reno asked indignantly, striding across
the room and snatching it from her grasp.
She smiled with no real cheer. "Youre not the only one who can pick
"Yknow, thats one nickname I dont think I like
muttered, slinging the jacket over his shoulder.
Dinah tossed Palmer the key to her room, and when Reno did the same, Palmer
"Bye Palmer!" Reno said, waving cheerily.
Palmer groaned softly. "Just get out of here!"
Reno and Dinah walked out the door, already arguing. Palmer raced to the
window and watched them stroll down the street. The second they were out
of view, he dashed back to his desk and dialed a number on his telephone.
"This is Palmer. They just left, and it was definitely who youre looking
for. The woman called herself Dinah
Right. Blonde hair, blue-gray eyes,
tall, thin. With Reno Lynley. Theyre on their way to the
Youre very welcome. Will I be getting the
usual compensation for this?
Excellent. It was a pleasure doing business
with you, as usual."
Palmer slammed down the phone with a vengeance, and allowed himself an evil
smirk a la Reno. "Heh heh. Im sure youll have fun with these
friends of mine, Reno."
Suddenly, his phone rang again. He picked it up. "Turks Pride
Yes, this is Ernest Palmer
WHAT?! You cant close
Because of health issues?! You had a complaint from
a Reno Lynley of chocobo excrement being in the food?! I dont know
what youre talking about!
You have someone across
the street watching me so I cant discard any evidence? Well
good, because if hes been there for more than five minutes
hed have seen
Hes only been there for a few seconds?!
No matter what, Reno always had the last laugh.
*** It was still dark, damp, and cold in Junon Harbor as Reno and Dinah hurried
through the streets and corridors on their way to the airport. They were
the only ones out.
"Why wont you tell me where were going?!" Dinah asked for what
seemed like the hundredth time that morning.
"Havent we had this conversation before?" Reno asked, exasperated.
"Im not telling you because if you did youd just ditch me, though
thats starting to seem like a good idea
"Why dont you do it, then?" Dinahs gaze and face held a challenge
as her eyes burned defiantly. "Just tell me where were going and Ill
ditch you and well both be happier."
Just as Reno opened his mouth to reply, he caught sight of someone moving
out of the corner of his eye. He spun swiftly, feeling sure that he saw a
flurry of activity as someone ducked behind a building.
"What was that?" Dinah had apparently seen it too.
"Whatever it was, it couldnt have been good," Reno replied, drawing
his gun carefully.
"What time does that flight leave?" Dinah asked, glancing at her watch.
"Why are you asking about that when weve got more important things
to worry about? Weve got someone stalking us!"
"Quit being so paranoid. Im asking because if the flight leaves at
seven, then weve got about two minutes to get there."
"What?!" Reno immediately forgot about the situation in front of him and
turned to her. "Thats the last flight there for days! If we dont
"Were in deep shit. Lets go!" Dinah dashed off. Reno caught up
to her easily and pulled her aside seconds before she would have entered
a widely traveled corridor.
"This way!" he said, pulling her with him as he sprinted down a darker, damp
"Whats this?!" Dinah asked, blinking to get used to the absence of
"A shortcut. Cmon!"
Reno led her to the end of the alley, where there was a large wooden fence
and a short stack of wooden crates pushed up against it. With a jump, he
was onto the stack of crates. He threw a hand down on the top of the fence
and used his momentum to vault over the top, landing in a crouch on the runway
on the other side.
A half a second later, Dinah sailed over the fence to join him. Looking around,
she quickly recognized that they were at the airport. A small cargo planes
engines were starting up.
"Uh oh," she muttered. Then to Reno: "Is that our lift?"
"Fraid so," Reno answered grimly.
Suddenly, he heard a clattering noise. He and Dinah spun simultaneously to
find that the person that had been following them had followed them over
the fence as well.
She was short and compact, with straight white hair that fell down her back
to her waist. She looked to be too young for the hair, even though he
couldnt pinpoint her age exactly. The only other person that Dinah
had ever heard of having such a color of hair at a young age was Sephiroth.
Dinah had seen pictures of Sephiroth, though, and this womans hair
was snow white, unlike the pure silver of the legendary warriors. Her
body was lithe and muscled, and she had flat white eyes that looked like
dark storm clouds.
White eyes? What the
? Reno thought to himself. She looks
"I am here to take back what is rightfully ours," she said, her voice an
emotionless monotone, looking straight at Dinah. She drew a long, thin sword
and held it in a practiced combat pose. "And to bring death to any who would
dare stand in my way."
but you were the human I could see from my tube when Hojo was
experimenting on me!" Dinah stammered. "Why would you want to take me back
to them? You have just as much of a right to hate them as I do!"
The woman said nothing and marched forward, her gaze unwavering from Dinah.
"I think we should run like hell; what about you?" Dinah said to Reno quietly.
That was when she realized that Reno was gone. She spun around quickly, but
all she saw was the plane still powering up and the woman still advancing.
"Damn you, Lynley. I should have known. You only watch out for number one,"
she said bitterly. Dinah turned her attention to the white haired woman.
I guess Ill just have to take care of this on my own.
"You really dont want to do this!" Dinah pleaded with the woman. The
white haired woman had no reaction, just continued toward Dinah. When Dinah
began to back away, the woman sped up.
Dinah decided to give up the idea of running, and held still. She cowered
as if she were afraid. "Please, dont hurt me!" she whimpered.
The woman showed her first sign of emotion by smiling triumphantly. She produced
a syringe and made as if she was going to inject it into Dinahs unprotected
Dinahs hand shot up and knocked the syringe flying to splinter into
tiny shards of glass on the tarmac. Her foot moved up at the same time, catching
the woman under her chin. Unready for the sudden attack, she staggered back.
Dinah pressed her advantage, both fists flying out; one to catch her adversary
in her right eye, and the other to double the woman over with a punch in
the gut. Dinah swiftly kicked the sword out of the womans hand to sail
across the pavement and land too far for her to reach.
Then the woman recovered from the gut punch much faster than she should have
been able to. She straightened up, and her fist struck Dinah in the side
of her head. Dinah fell back, her ears ringing with the force of the blow.
The woman swept her foot across the back of Dinahs knees, sending the
blonde tumbling to the ground. Dinah hit her head on the pavement in the
process, and was knocked out cold.
The woman shook her head and picked Dinah up, throwing her over one shoulder.
Then she became aware of the loud roar in her ears from right behind her,
and she sensed a large presence. A voice said from behind her ear, "Ill
take that, thank you!"
Dinahs weight was lifted from her, and the white haired woman spun.
The little cargo plane was taxiing along the runway directly beside her,
and the red-haired man that Dinah was traveling with was crouched in the
open hatch of the plane, smiling and waving at her. Directly beside him was
Dinahs prone form, which had been slung over the womans shoulder
a half of a second before. The man gave her one last impertinent wave, then
slammed the door shut as the little plane lifted off.
The woman gave an animalistic howl of fury and rage, and glared after the plane that was rapidly climbing into the early morning air. "I will get you eventually. You cannot hide forever."
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