Tseng’s Prophecy, Revenge
The airship, the mark III Highwind, flew through the air fast, the few
people who had been injured in the battle were now being healed by
Materia and modern medicine. The previous events had made the troupe of
heroes who had saved the world so many times tired, especially the
mercenary Turk known as Tseng. He had been treated for burns and other
injuries, but was now on the flight deck with Aeris Gainsborough.
"You think he’s still out there?" asked Aeris.
"Who?" Tseng asked, looking down into her emerald eyes, so full of
"Greg," said Aeris. "Sephiroth’s son."
Tseng raised his eyebrows and looked out over the blue skies. "I prefer
not to think about that," said Tseng. "The scoop on him is he had
worked for Reeve for years…with interest in Gast and Hojo’s work
projects on Sephiroth and Jenova…and then when he’d heard about you…he
"So he really didn’t like me for my part in bringing him down?" Aeris
Tseng shrugged. "I guess not," he said.
"What about Kyle?" Aeris pressed on.
"He’s just one of Reeve’s old friends and security guards," said Tseng.
"But Kyle is staying with us. He says wherever Reeve goes, that he’s
gonna go. As long as Greg is still out there."
Aeris shook her head. "How could Greg hate us so much?"
"I’m not sure," said Tseng. "But I’m not gonna let him lay a finger on
you," he said, pecking her cheek.
Aeris smiled faintly. "I know."
Midgar City was not the best place to be at the moment. Greg pounded
through the doors into Reeve’s office, his Massumune Blade in hand.
Reeve was nowhere to be seen. Despite his wounds, Greg had a battle
"Who are you?" came a voice behind him, and he turned to see two
people; a woman dressed in red and a man in a green general’s uniform.
"Shut up," snarled Greg.
"I’m Scarlet, and this is Heidegger, of Shinra Incorporated…" she
looked him up and down. "What are you doing?"
Greg stepped forward. "I’m going to kill Reeve. Where do I find him?"
Scarlet seemed amused. "I don’t know…" she said and traced her finger
down Greg’s bloody and torn chest. "But we have something in
common…with Reeve out of the way, we are in charge," she said smoothly
"If you find Reeve for me, I will kill him," Greg said. "And in return,
you will run Shinra."
Scarlet grinned and Heidegger did likewise. "Deal."
Kyle Fox stepped out of the airship and into the small town of Kalm.
Kyle hadn’t been here since he had left when he was a child, to go to
the big city and become a soldier for Shinra Incorporated, the biggest
company in the Planet.
"Hey, you," came a firm voice, and Kyle turned to see a man striding
towards the airship as the others came strolling down. "Who’re you? We
don’t appreciate Shinra dogs here," he said.
Kyle sighed. "I am a Soldier, true," he said. "But I’ve hardly
considered my work as ‘working for Shinra’. Besides, I grew up here,"
The man softened. "Really?" he asked. "So did I. In that case, glad to
meet ya. I’m Shaun Rolan," he said, pumping Kyle’s hand. "What can I do
for you…?" he said, shaking his head slightly to get Kyle the idea he
wanted his name.
"Kyle," he said. "Kyle Fox. I’d like some hotel reservations, for my
group," he said.
"Sure thing," said Shaun. "I’ll get that for you right away."
An hour later, people had gone to separate rooms. Cid had put covering
over the airship so it would be nearly invisible, and his crew was
still working in the ship. He was now deeply immersed in conversation
Tseng sighed and leaned back on the stool in the bar. Sitting with him,
was Rude, Elena and Reno. Aeris had gone to bed for the night, and Kyle
had gone off to reunite with some of his fellow townsmen. That Shaun
guy seemed nice enough, thought Tseng as he turned back to the bar.
Cloud and Tifa had gone back to their room, leaving Barret Wallace,
Yuffie Kisargi, Red XIII and Reeve had also gone to sleep.
"Ah…" said Reno. "I could probably get used to this."
Rude grunted. "Only prob’ is, is that our leader has turned into a
mushy guy over the girl he grew up with," he said.
"Shut up," Elena said.
Tseng sighed. "Rude," he said. "If you’ve got a problem with my
relationship Aeris…you can stuff it," he said quietly.
"Yeah," Reno chuckled.
"Kalm, eh?" asked Scarlet as the helicopter moved forward, Greg wearing
the clothes that had been Sephiroth’s trade mark. He hadn’t shaved, and
he had growing silver hair. "Well, we’d better arrange a Shinra Strike
Force to go in with you."
Greg simply nodded. "Good," he said. "Not too many. I would like the
joy of killing some of them by myself," he said.
"As you wish," Scarlet said and barked orders into the small cellular
Tseng looked up at the sounds of rotor blades cutting through the air.
"Greg," hissed Elena.
Tseng was up like a shot. Cid barged into the room, his pike in hand,
as Vincent followed with his shotgun. Everyone had their weapons out.
"The Shinra are comin’ at us like crazy," Cid stated. "We’ll get out
an’ hold ‘em off. You get the others."
"Reno, with me. Rude, Elena; you two with the others," Tseng ordered as
he ran up the stairs.
Kyle hopped out of bed as the door opened and the leader of the Turks
named Tseng popped in. "Get up. Shinra’s here," said Tseng, then left
Kyle on his own. Kyle got dressed hastily, a long trench coat, his
blond hair cut militaristically. He slipped his dagger into his boot,
and grabbed his pistol, jumping into the hallway.
"What’s going on?" asked Cloud as he and Tifa came up behind Kyle.
"We’re goin’ to the airship. Shinra’s here."
Gunfire sprayed the hall and they shouted in dismay, Cloud taking Tifa
to a door at the other side of the corridor while Kyle ducked back into
his room. A Shinra Attack Squad was there, when Reeve appeared beside
Kyle. "What the hell are they doing?" Reeve shouted.
Gunfire sprayed the corridor again as Kyle fired several shots back.
"Wait," Tseng said as they did the inventory on who was on the ship.
"Where’s Cloud? Tifa? Kyle and Reeve?" he asked.
"Uh oh…" Red said.
Tseng cocked his gun. "Stay here. Reno, Rude, Elena?"
They nodded and they ran back to the hotel as Cid and his crew prepared
the ship for liftoff. Tseng body checked the door down and hit the
ground in a combat roll, coming up and shooting the two soldiers at the
bar in the chest. They crumpled to the ground and Tseng did a quick
sweep of the area.
Gunfire came from upstairs.
"There," said Tseng as he moved to the foot of the stairs…
…and saw a Squad of Shinra Soldiers hiding there, firing down a
darkened hallway. "Rude?" Tseng whispered, and the bald man came up,
shotgun in hand, his sunglasses put perfectly over his eyes, and looked
like a terminator. He leveled his gun at the squad and fired, shortly
followed by blasts from Reno’s, Elena’s and Tseng’s guns.
"Holy shit!" shouted one of the soldiers.
"They’re attacking from behind—" another started before Tseng popped
him in the head. He started up the stairs, taking them two at a time,
firing as the others stopped so they wouldn’t hit him. They reached the
top as Kyle, Cloud and Tifa came around the corner.
"Come on," said Tseng. "We gotta get outta here."
"Not so fast," said a voice from the foot of the stairs, and they
turned to see Greg standing there, the Massumune Blade clutched in both
hands. "I have a score to settle with two of you, I believe…" he said,
in the smooth voice of his father, Sephiroth.
"Yeah, right," said Rude. He, Elena, and Reno leveled their guns.
"Not this time," said Greg and clutched a black ball in his hand. Blue
rings of energy surrounded the three Turks and Tifa, lifting them into
the air. "You won’t interfere. You may survive if these two infidels
succeed," Greg continued, looking at Tseng and Cloud.
Tseng cocked his pistol. "You stay back, Cloud," he said. "I’ll take
the first round."
Greg shouted a war cry and hurled the sword up the stairs. Cloud and
the others had managed to get out of the way, and Tseng leapt into the
air, executing a perfect forward flip. He landed his heel on Greg’s
face and both the warriors tumbled down the rest of the way.
"Uhn…" Greg muttered, kicking Tseng’s feet out from under him. "You
failed to kill me," he said, standing and pulling a dagger. "I won’t
give you the chance to make that mistake again," he said, plunging the
dagger towards Tseng’s throat…
Tseng closed his eyes and waited for the inevitable pain to strike his
throat as the dagger would plunge through his neck. "Bastard!" a female
voice shouted and Greg was hit from behind, the dagger’s course
diverted into the floor beside Tseng’s neck as Aeris Gainsborough hit
Greg from behind and took him to the ground. She took out her rod.
"Aeris…no!" Tseng cried.
"Foolish girl," said Greg, raising his foot and kicking at her. Aeris
nimbly stepped back as Tseng clambered to his feet, grabbing his pistol
from the floor and aiming the muzzle at Greg. "No you don’t," said
Greg, and moved his hands lightning quick and a bolt of electricity
sparked from his index finger and blew the gun apart in Tseng’s hand.
"Agh!" cried Tseng as he sank to his knees, clutching his bleeding
hand, a piece of shrapnel sticking from his wrist. Greg laughed like
the maniac he was, and didn’t see Aeris plunge her rod into his
stomach. He buckled and received her foot in the face and he flew back,
blood flying from his nose and ears as he hit the ground.
"Fool yourself," Aeris said and turned to Tseng. "You okay?" she asked,
her voice taking on a concerned edge as she looked at him.
"Bitch," said Greg as he hit her, knocking her to the side. Tseng was
on his feet in an instant and running at Greg, but there was something
he hadn’t guessed…Greg threw out the Massumune and pointed it at Tseng.
It rammed right through the bone of Tseng’s shoulder and rammed into
the wall behind him, pinning him effectively. "Ha!" cried Greg.
"Tseng!" Aeris exclaimed, picking her rod up off the floor and slamming
it with all her might into Greg’s face. His nose broke with a wet snap
and he turned, bringing out his dagger.
Tseng gripped the sword and tried to pull it out, but it was no use.
Aeris was trapped.
"Prepare to die," Greg said.
"Greg!" Cloud shouted as he came into the room, arcing his arm back and
hurling his Ultima Weapon across the room. Greg turned and caught it in
midair, but Cloud had provided the distraction needed for Aeris to run
over to Tseng and pull the sword from his shoulder.
"Cloud Strife…you murdered my father…" hissed Greg.
"You’re father murdered hundreds of innocents when he burned
Nibelheim," Cloud said, picking up his Ultima Weapon as Greg grabbed
his Massumune. "Release my friends and let us go."
Kyle squirmed against the laser bonds. "Hey! Greg, you sonuvabitch! Why
don’t you take me on?" he shouted.
"Yeah!" Tifa called. "Me, too!"
Greg was momentarily distracted.
Tseng hit him from behind, hurting his shoulder, but distracting him
enough for Cloud to cut the others’ bonds. "Come on, let’s get outta
here!" said Tseng as Aeris and Kyle helped him up. "They’re burning the
They exited as fire engulfed the room.
Greg stepped out of the flames and watched them leave.
Cid nodded to Jerry and the ship lifted off as the others boarded.
Reno, Elena and Rude were there as well. Kyle Fox went up to Cid, who
was looking back down at the village of Kalm. "It’s being burned," Cid
"I know," said Kyle. "Rolan was there."
Cid nodded. "Sorry to hear it," he said. "We’ll get him Kyle. Don’t
worry," he said, patting him on the shoulder and walking off, leaving
Kyle uttered a silent prayer for Shaun Rolan and the other inhabitants
"Kyle?" asked Reeve as he stepped up, free of his laser bonds. "You all
Kyle turned. "Yeah," he said, stepping away from the window.
"You failed miserably," Greg said, standing before Heidegger, Scarlet
and the other man, Palmer. "You promised me they wouldn’t escape, and
"It won’t happen again," said Palmer.
"Shut up," said Greg. "You fat bastard…just shut up."
Palmer raised a brow. "I have a quick and easy way to dispose of
them…right now," he said. "Oh, no, we’re not through yet," he said,
dumping some lard into his coffee and taking a long slurp. "You see,"
he said. "We have their course setting…and they’re going straight to
Bone City…which we can bomb easily."
"Out of the question," said Greg. "I want the joy of killing
Gainsborough, Strife and that impudent Tseng myself…" he said.
Palmer shrugged. "Fine, then," he said. "But if things get out of
hand…just let us know and we’ll have the city bombed."
"Fine. Reeve will be killed."
"How’re you doing?" asked Tseng, his shoulder healed by Restore Materia
as he came into the room he shared now with Aeris Gainsborough, who was
sitting on the bed.
"Fine, thanks," she said.
Tseng sat next to her. "We’re coming up on Bone City," he said. "We’ll
be safe there for a while."
"I don’t know," Aeris turned her emerald eyes to him.
Tseng sighed. "We’ll be safe there for a while. I know a guy there,
named Jason," he said. "If there’s anybody who knows how to scramble a
trail, its Jason."
"I hope so," said Aeris, leaning her head on Tseng’s shoulder.
Tseng tilted her head up. "Hey," he said. "I’m here. There’s no way
that Greg is gonna lay a finger on you. Because if he does, I’ll kill
Aeris smiled. "Nice to know," she said and raised her lips to his.
Palmer looked over the technician’s monitor as the airship flew through
the air, following the signal coming from the renegades’ ship. "We’ll
be on them as soon as they touch down," said Palmer, turning to
Heidegger, Scarlet and Greg.
"Good," said Greg.
Scarlet turned to him. "You’ll kill Reeve."
"Yes," Greg said plainly.
"Do you think…" she said. "That you could take Reno alive?" she asked,
a slight purpose underlying her tone.
Greg looked at her angrily for a second, then nodded. "As long as I
take the joy of killing the others," he said: "you will have Reno of
"Tseng!" said Jason Thull, walking up to his friend and embracing him.
"What brings a man of your stature to a place like Bone City? This is a
worker’s domain," he said, motioning to all the construction work going
on around the small town of Bone City.
"Shinra Incorporated," Tseng said as Aeris and the others stepped out.
Jason stepped back. "Shinra?" he asked, as if he couldn’t believe the
words. "Last I heard, buddy, you were working for Shinra," he said.
"Change of loyalty and plans," said Tseng, like the Turk he had been.
"I’m not going to work for a company of Shinra’s standards ever again.
How’s it going, Jason?" he asked, changing the topic smoothly as he
pulled off his sunglasses. The others were mulling around.
Jason shrugged. "With my skills," he said. "A company hired me to build
‘em an outta the way lab…but they went outta business, so me and the
guys decided to make our own town, fend for ourselves. We’ve been
attacked by various groups, but we’ve fended for ourselves pretty
well," he said. "Who’re your friends? They look familiar," he said.
"They were here for the Lunar Harp once," said Tseng.
"Oh yeah," said Jason. "Yeah. The spiky-haired guy I remember…but
there’s a lot more of ‘em now. Can I get you something to eat?" he
asked, motioning to a half constructed house.
"What’s the dish?" asked Tseng.
"Grilled bear, with a glass of ale," said Jason with a grin. "I told
you; we’re basically barbarians, now," he said.
Tseng glanced at the others and nodded. "I’m not afraid to try new
things. But…there’s a reason we’re here," he said. "We need you to
throw Shinra off our trail, because—" he was cut off as an alarm
sounded throughout the city. "What’s that?" Tseng asked.
"The air raid alarm," Jason said.
The Shinra soldiers piled out of the various airships which were
touching down in and around Bone City. They rushed forward as bombs
were dropped, raining fire across the place. The flames danced up into
the night, licking the blue-black skies far above. One of the soldiers,
Syd Irrit, stopped as he came face to face with another soldier. One he
knew. "Kyle?" he asked.
"Irrit," said Kyle.
"What’re you doing here?" asked Irrit.
Kyle hefted a battle axe. "Change of loyalty." Before Irrit could lift
his gun, Kyle chopped the battle axe down on Irrit’s skull, killing the
soldier instantly. Kyle ran forward, the axe in hand, and attacked
various Shinra Soldiers.
"Dammit," Jason Thull said. "What’re they doing here?" he asked.
"I was about to tell you," Tseng said, firing a few bursts from his
custom magnum .48. "Shinra is trying to kill us. Sephiroth’s son is
running the show," he said.
Jason raised his brow. "Sephiroth’s son?" he asked stupidly.
"Yeah," Tseng said, picking off two soldiers. "Anyhow. So you can see,
this produces a problem," he said. "I gotta get to Aeris. Can you
handle yourself?" he asked.
Jason hefted a sword, similar to Cloud’s old Buster Sword. "Yeah."
"Tseng!" Aeris cried as she killed a Shinra Soldier who had leveled his
gun at her. "Tseng, where are you?" she called.
"Here," said Tseng, coming up behind her and startling her. "C’mon. We
got a minute an’ forty before the end of the world," he joked and shot
a man coming at them. "We’d better get to the airship. We have to round
up as many of Bone City’s defenders as possible."
"Not so fast, uh-uhn," came a voice behind them, and they whirled to
see Greg standing there, flames dancing around him. "Not this time,
Tseng," he said. "This time, you won’t walk away like you have in the
past. This time, you die," he said.
Jason Thull came up behind the man dressed in black as he drew his
sword at Tseng. Jason reared back the sword and plunged it forward.
Tseng was surprised when the Massumune clattered to the ground beside
Greg and more surprised when the bloody tip of a sword protruded from
his stomach. Greg let out a gurble of a scream and sank to his knees,
revealing Jason there.
"Come on," said Jason. "That ain’t gonna put him down for long."
Greg clutched the restore materia as they ran past him.
Greg stood up, grunting as he wiped the blood away. They were running,
all towards the airship. He pulled out a small PHS Phone. "Scarlet?" he
asked, as he stepped back onto the command Airship. "Bomb this place to
"Cid, get us outta here!" Cloud shouted as the others finally loaded
in. "They’re gonna bomb this place to the stone age if we don’t move
out really fast, right now!" he said.
Cid turned to Jerry. "Take off," he said.
Jerry gunned the engines and the airship shuddered, lifting off the
ground. The others were all on the Flight Deck, looking down at the
half completed Bone City as bombs flew down from the air and smacked
into the ground, blowing the establishments to pieces.
"No…" whispered Jason.
Tseng put a hand on his friend’s shoulder. "Sorry…" he said. "It was my
fault…if I hadn’t come…"
"It’s okay," said Jason, his shoulders sagging. He smiled faintly.
"That life was getting a little boring for me, anyway."
Kyle only understood to much.
"Well," said Rude a few minutes later when he, Elena, Reno, Tseng,
Jason and Kyle were sitting at the airship’s small bar. "That was
interesting," he continued, polishing his shotgun. "A bad loss,
however," he said.
Elena glared at him. "A bad loss," she said. "You call the destruction
of an entire city…no, two entire cities a bad loss?" she said. "As if
it wasn’t enough when Meteor hit Midgar, but now Kalm and Bone City are
"Don’t be so weak, Elena," Rude hissed.
Elena reared her hand back, but Reno grabbed it in mid air. "Let’s have
none of that," he said softly, immediately calming her down. He turned
to Rude. "My mother used to say: ‘If you have nothing nice to say, say
nothing’," he said.
"Sorry," Rude mocked, but Reno could tell he wasn’t.
Tseng gulped down another glass of beer and looked at Reno with a nod
of approval. "Thank you, Reno," he said and turned his cold gaze to
Rude and Elena. "You two just get along for one evening? We’re having a
really rough day," he said, looking at Kyle and Jason, who had each
lost their homes.
"I’ll try," Elena said, casting a sideways glance at Rude.
Rude simply nodded. "Sure," he said, and guzzled back another shot of
"All gone…" said Jason blindly, lost in a drunken stupor. Tseng was
going to have to help the man back to his room. "All of it…seven years
of hard work…all gone," he continued, guzzling his beer. He hadn’t
shaved and stubble was growing over his face. "Friends dead…closest
thing I had to family…" he continued.
Don’t get involved, Tseng. You’ll just make him even more emotional
then he’s already getting. Talk to Kyle, the voice in his head told him
and Tseng looked at Kyle, who was staring morosely at his first beer,
which he hadn’t touched. "You okay, Kyle?" he asked the young
"Yeah," Kyle said, shooting a hand out and grabbing the beer, taking a
long gulp. He wiped the foam from his upper lip and fought back a
grimace in the presence of the ever-so-tough Turks. "I’m fine," he said
with a lazy smile.
Tseng nodded appreciatively. "Just asking," he said. This kid is good.
Anyone could tell he is completely cracked over his home being blown
up, but he won’t admit it…tough guy, thought Tseng. "Maybe I’d better
head back," he said to himself.
"Have we got a destination in mind yet?" asked Rude.
Tseng shrugged, standing up a little shakily and taking Jason by the
shoulder. "Come on," he said. "Let’s get you back, okay?" he asked.
"Sure…" Jason said.
Aeris sighed, sitting up in bed as Tseng opened the door and stepped
inside, peeling off his jacket. "Man," he said as Aeris stood and
walked over to him. "That was a bad day," he said, turning to Aeris and
taking her shoulders in his hands gently. "I’ve still got you, though,
right?" he asked, kissing her gingerly.
"Right," said Aeris.
"We should get some sleep."
"Why’d we land here, of all places?" Tseng asked, early in the next
morning. He had The Hangover From Hell and was feeling like shit, but
couldn’t believe why Cid had asked to put down here, at Cosmo Canyon.
There was no strategic importance of the place. They could have at
least gone to Fort Condor.
Red XIII growled. "Because I need to speak with some people," he said
Tseng nodded, understanding. "Good point," he said groggily, although
he personally didn’t understand a damned thing.
"Just go with it, Tseng," Reno said in a hushed voice, but it was
useless, since Red heard every word.
"Hmm," Red said and lay his head down on his paws.
Reno grimaced. "Sorry," he said.
"Let’s just land this sucker," Cid said from the pilot’s station where
he was giving the orders to Jerry to land the Mark III Airship. "Right.
Putting down in three minutes," he said. "They’re expecting us for some
odd reason…" he said.
Red nodded. "I contacted them last night, telling them I needed to
speak with Grandfather’s successor, Nyfel," he said.
"Nyfel?" asked Reno stupidly.
Red nodded. "Nyfel worked with Grandfather at the observatory for
several years, as his successor," he said. "Nyfel is the best friend
I’ve ever had, before Hojo took me to Shinra Project Headquarters in
Midgar City, where I met you people."
"Hmm," Cid said, lighting a cigarette. "Just make sure he’s
"Nyfel is the most trustworthy person I know of, aside from you
people," Red replied.
Tseng sighed, adjusting his pistol in its holster. "C’mon," he said to
Reno. "Let’s get down to the landing bay."
"Yeah," Reno said and the two of them turned and strode down towards
Suddenly, the ship rocked incredibly hard. "What the—" Reno started.
"Greg," hissed Tseng.
The two Turks turned and ran back to the main cockpit area where Cid
was leaning over Jerry’s flight chair. "What’s happening?" Tseng asked
"Shinra has developed some of those old F-22’s, two-man fighters," said
Cid, pressing several keys on the keyboard. "I’ve got two one-man
fighters up and ready in the hangar bays. Tseng, you’re a qualified
pilot?" he asked.
"Good. You and I are going out there. Reno, can you keep this ship
under tabs for me?" Cid asked as the two of them left the bridge. Reno
pulled a hand through his red hair and striding up to Jerry’s console
as the others came onto the bridge.
Reno looked out the viewport at the fighters, firing machine gun blasts
and missiles, which Jerry was expertly ducking. "Can you keep this up
for long?" Reno asked, watching the pilot’s fingers dance over the
keyboards to keep the airship from being hit.
Cid blasted out of the small hangar bay, the mask fitting over the
lower portion of his face. "Tseng, you with me?" he asked curtly as he
cut hard right.
"Yeah," Tseng’s voice crackled over the speaker.
Cid nodded to no one in particular. "Good," he said. "Stay on my wing.
We’ll engage ‘em now," he said and came in behind one of the fighters.
Jack "Wolfhound" Deegan looked back over his shoulder, the man in the
backseat reported two fighters dispatching from the airship they had
been told to attack. The Shinra Airships were flying towards Cosmo
Canyon, getting ready to blow it to pieces. "Damn," muttered Wolfhound
as he tried to shake the fighter. "This guy’s good."
"Locking on…" Cid said, watching the red target center on the fighter
and glow green. "Firing!" he said and let loose a missile which blew
the fighter to pieces. "Okay, Tseng. Split up. We’re gonna have to stop
‘em…" he said and noticed the fleet of airships flying towards Cosmo
Canyon. "Oh, shit. Jerry, activate the ship’s guns. The airships are
gonna try and bomb Cosmo Canyon."
"Copy," said Jerry and the Mark III Highwind opened fire.
"Scratch one," Tseng reported.
"Remaining bogies are bugging out already?" Cid asked as the signals on
his rapidly altered their course and started running away. "Huh," Cid
stated. "Okay, Tseng. Let’s go on some strafing runs on those
airships," he said.
"Right with you, Cid," Tseng replied and the two of them punched in the
afterburners. "I’ve got one of ‘em. I’m starting a missile run," he
said and a bright flash caused Cid to look back to see one of the
airships tumble to the ground in pieces. "I only fired one missile,"
Tseng said quietly.
"Somethin’ ain’t right," Cid said and turned on his scanners. "Shit! I
knew it! These are decoys! They’ve got ground troops moving in!" he
switched comm channels. "Jerry, evacuate Cosmo Canyon, otherwise a full
out war is gonna begin."
Greg watched the progress on a monitor as he sat back in Midgar City.
He had anticipated these methods, and that was why he had not gone.
Palmer had organized the entire mission, but Highwind and Tseng were
not as dumb as they were played out to be.
"Damn," he muttered, turning to Heidegger. "How’s Project R coming?" he
Heidegger grinned. "Just fine," he said. "Care to look?" he said,
opening a tube, revealing a human man inside. "Without Restore Materia,
it is difficult," he said. "But it will be fine."
The body of Rufus lay inside the tube.
"Shit," muttered Tseng as explosions started to wrack Cosmo Canyon.
Luckily, everyone had been evacuated, but years of work had been lost
when the Observatory had been destroyed on the first wave of the
attack. Luckily, Nyfel had managed to download most of Bugenhagen’s
data onto a disc, so they could review it. "Let’s get outta here.
Tseng, back to the Highwind," he said.
"Copy," Tseng replied.
Ten minutes later, both fighters were under repairs by Cid’s crew.
Aeris rushed out onto the flight deck to meet Tseng. "Sorry about the
Canyon," she said quietly.
"They’re taking out wherever we go," Tseng said quietly.
"We have to strike," Aeris said.
Tseng looked at her with a gentle smile. "You’ve never acted out like
this," he said. "But I agree. We have to stop Greg before he can kill
anyone else, and destroy anymore cities like Cosmo Canyon, Bone City
and Kalm," he said.
Red was staring at the rapidly burning city. "Home…" he whispered.
"We’ll get ‘em, Red," Tifa said quietly, scratching the scruff of his
neck as tears came to Red’s eyes.
Now, more had paid the price of Vengeance from Greg.
Nyfel was at the computer, his fingers dancing over the keyboards as he
brought up hundreds of years worth of data. He raised a hand and pushed
his wire rimmed glasses back on his forehead as he typed, the citizens
of the destroyed cities had built up homes in the Mark III Highwind,
and Nyfel had been working for a long time.
"Nyfel," came a voice behind him, and he turned to see Red XIII padding
into the room, looking tired and defeated. "It is good to see someone
I’ve known for a long time," Red said, sitting down beside him as Nyfel
scratched the scruff of his neck.
Nyfel smiled. "You have no idea," he said, and pulled the gun in his
pocket. Before Red said anything, the silenced shot rang out in the
small computer room.
"Anyone seen Red?" Rude asked as he stepped onto the bridge, where Cid
was standing with Jerry reviewing some readouts. Tseng stepped up,
agreeing silently with Rude’s testament. Red hadn’t been in good
condition when they had last seen him.
Cid looked back. "No," he said, and then his eyes widened.
Tseng turned to see why.
"Nobody move," Nyfel said, a pistol in his hand. The pistol was pointed
at the head of a wide eyed Aeris Gainsborough, tears streaking her
face. Tseng felt as if the emotional skeleton had been ripped free of
his body and left a horrible pain. "Or the girl gets it," Nyfel
"What the hell…Nyfel?" asked Cid asked Rude drew his shotgun.
"Don’t do a thing," hissed Tseng. "Aeris, it’ll be okay."
"Shut up!" screamed Nyfel. He didn’t see the door open behind him, and
Reno, Elena and Cloud stepping in. They froze at the scene and Reno
slowly stepped forward. "I’ll kill her! Everyone down on the ground,
now!" he shouted.
Reno slowly stepped forward, Cloud had his sword out and Elena had
pulled some handcuffs.
"Please, don’t hurt her…" Tseng said.
"Then do as I say," he said and kicked something small to him. "It’s a
transporter. Press the button and it will take you to where you shall
go," he said. When Tseng hesitated to by Reno more time, Nyfel cocked
the hammer back on the gun. "Do it!" shouted Nyfel and Tseng picked it
"Which button?" he asked, as Reno was five feet away now.
"The one on the top," he said.
"Now!" screamed Nyfel.
Tseng pressed the button.
Reno lunged but too late. Nyfel and Aeris had transported, and when he
turned, Cloud Strife had disappeared from Elena’s side. "No…" hissed
Reno. "Where’d they go?"
"How should we know?" Elena and Rude asked at the same time.
Tseng landed with a hard crash on the prison cell floor, and the first
thing he noticed was his gun was missing. Cloud and Aeris arrived
merely seconds after, and Cloud and Tseng turned to Aeris. "You all
right?" they said in rhythm and looked at each other.
"Shut up," came a voice from the door to the cell, and they whirled to
see Greg, with two Shinra guards with cattle prods standing there.
"Somebody’s gotta be first," he said, eyeing them all. "So, which one
of you will it be? Tseng? Cloud…" he shifted his gaze. "Or maybe
Cloud stood. "My turn this time," he said, narrowing his eyes at Greg.
"Fine," said Greg. "You will fight me in my arena. Anything goes," he
said, and turned to the guards. "Take the other two to the main
audience chamber, where they can watch their friend die. Have his sword
brought to the arena."
"Yes, Sir," said both the officers.
"Wish me luck," Cloud said and walked off.
"Come on," the two guards said and Tseng and Aeris stood up, looking
angry at the two men. "We will obey the will of our lord and master, so
don’t say anything," they said in rhythm again.
Tseng and Aeris exchanged a look, then moved.
Cloud picked up the Ultima Weapon and looked around the dark arena. It
was hot, and sweat was condensing on his brows as his glowing Mako eyes
scanned the area. His spiky blond hair was matted with sweat, and his
throat was dry. It hurt to swallow, but Cloud gulped and immediately
regretted it as he purposefully scanned the area for any sign of his
opponent, Greg. He shifted his gaze from side to side, but could see
nothing. He turned around and looked behind him. Still nothing.
"Cloud," came a voice behind him and Cloud whirled to receive a foot in
the face. He turned into a backwards cartwheel and came onto his feet
to duck a punch and dodge a kick. He braced his sword in front of him
as Greg drew his and swung the Massumune, making Cloud’s body shudder
as he hit the Ultima Weapon. Greg followed up with a left-right slash
attack and kicked Cloud in the stomach, following up with an uppercut.
Cloud landed hard, but backward rolled as Greg plunged his Massumune
Blade into the dirt where Cloud had just been.
Cloud came to his feet and parried an attack by Greg and swung his
massive Ultima Weapon down, but Greg got the Massumune up quick enough
and deflected his blow. Cloud dodged a blow and swept his foot across
the ground, but Greg jumped and avoided his foot. Cloud rolled to the
side as Greg swung the sword and missed barely. Cloud came up and used
the Ultima Weapon to block a rapid series of attacks by Greg, and Cloud
twisted the sword in his hand and pressed an attack, using a rapid
series of blows.
Cloud’s Ultima Weapon glowed and he lunged forward, flames barking out
from his sword and he shouted a battle cry as he leapt forward and
plunged the tremendous sword down. Greg brought the Massumune up but it
snapped and clattered to the ground in pieces under the force of
Cloud’s superstrong attack. Cloud jumped back a foot and watched as
Greg scooped up the handle of his sword with his foot and kicked it at
Cloud raised a hand to block it and gave Greg the opening he needed.
Greg lunged forward and batted the Ultima Weapon from Cloud’s hands and
rammed into the warrior’s stomach, knocking both of them to the ground.
Cloud flipped Greg off him and jumped to his feet and turned to receive
a solid fist to the jaw. As he bent down, Greg rammed his knee up into
Cloud’s face, knocking the ex-Soldier to the ground. Cloud rolled back
and avoided Greg’s foot.
"Okay," said Greg. "I’ve had it." He put his hands together.
Sparks of lightning rang out from the roof of the arena and Cloud back
flipped as the area where he had stood was scorched from the earth,
burnt in a rapid succession of lightning blasts. Cloud landed with a
soft thud as Greg stepped through the clouds and smoke and debris of
his own man-made chaos. He pulled a small sword from a secondary sheath
on his hip and assumed a defensive stance. Cloud swallowed.
"Die," Greg said and charged.
Cloud took a step forward and leapt, flipping through the air and
bracing his hand on Greg’s head, flipping further and landing beside
his Ultima Weapon. He turned to Greg, his anger rising at the way the
other was fighting so ruthlessly. "You wanna use Materia?" Cloud
mocked. "Fine," he said and momentarily sheathed his sword.
The ground around Greg started shaking, as black lightning formed a
cage around Greg. He touched it and black electricity shot along his
arm, making him jump back with a sharp scream of pain as a large
section of the earth under his feet tore away and drifted into the sky.
Greg was shouting obscenities as Cloud watched, the ceiling above
blowing apart. Cloud drew his Ultima Weapon and used it as a shield to
the falling debris. He waited until it was gone and Greg was only a
speck in the sky.
Greg stood as a huge red dragon appeared in front of him, and he was
awestruck at the rippling red muscles of the Neo Bahumuht in front of
him. Greg swallowed and dropped to a defensive stance as the Neo in
front of him gathered energy, light particles forming all around its
gigantic maw as it collected energy.
Greg let out a scream as a large jet of flame and electricity blew the
ground around him apart and tore through his black cloak and his skin.
He screamed as another wave blast him back towards the earth so far
Cloud watched as Greg hit the ground with a hefty smack. He had the
wind knocked out of him and Cloud stood with a lop sided grin. He
walked up to Greg, who was struggling to breathe. He looked at Cloud,
anger in his eyes as to what and why he had just done that. "Anything
goes," Cloud said to him and walked on past.
Dammit, thought Greg.
"Round Two is to begin now," said one of the guards as Cloud stepped
back in. Tseng and Aeris exchanged a glance.
"I’ll go," Tseng said. "Tend Cloud. He may be hurt," he said and hefted
his pistol in one hand and stepped through the door and it closed
behind him. He heard the click as the lock shifted into place. Cloud
let him live, but for threatening Aeris, I won’t, thought Tseng as he
looked around. Greg came up behind Cloud the second time around, so
he’ll probably try to fool me using a similar tactic. So, I’ve just got
to play along and get him how he least expects it.
Tseng swallowed and turned, then whirled and jumped back to avoid the
kick Greg threw at him. Greg let out a curse as he realized Tseng had
outsmarted him, and the latter landed to bring out his pistol, firing a
shot immediately. Greg took it in the kneecap and fell to the ground,
his broken Massumune clattering as he screamed in inexorable pain.
"Well, well," Tseng said. "After all Cloud’s hard work, one good
gunshot is all that does it?" he said to Greg, who was looking angrily
at him. "So, how does it feel to be on the receiving end, now, Greg?"
he said. "Huh? How does it feel?"
"Weak," hissed Greg. "You can’t kill me."
Tseng sighed, standing. "No," he said. "I can’t. Killing you would be
too food, but I can shoot you through the eyes, make sure you never see
again. The shoulders, so you never use your arms again. The knee caps,
so you never walk again," he said, loading the chambers of his pistol.
"No," Greg said.
"Oh, yes," said Tseng. "You know, Aeris changed me; I have something
against killing and horrible injury, but she’s made an acception in
your case. Just like your insane father, Sephiroth, you must be
stopped. So yes, I am going to kill you. Spare you all the pain," he
said, cocking the hammer back.
"Do it," hissed Greg.
"Okay," Tseng said.
A gunshot rang out, followed by a fleshy thump as the remains of Greg’s
head hit the floor. He turned as the door opened and Cloud and Aeris
ran out. Aeris hugged Tseng hard and Cloud stood behind her. "You did
it," said Aeris.
"Good work," Cloud said.
"You did it too," said Tseng.
"Okay, freeze," said Nyfel, coming into the room, wielding a pistol,
followed by guards. "You have killed the Lord, and now, you must be
punished," he said with an insane grin. "We are taking on in his place.
He has given a new control to Shinra…Palmer, Heidegger and Scarlet are
in charge of Shinra."
"What about Reeve?" Cloud asked.
Nyfel grinned. "Reeve, is no longer a problem."
"You killed him?"
"No," Nyfel said. "The others want to have a little fun with him,
first, but yes, I do think they will eventually kill him in the end of
it all, yes," he said. "And they have your friend, Red XIII. Those two
may be a considerable ransom."
Cloud brought up his Ultima Weapon. "Not this time," he said.
Tseng brought up his pistol and Aeris her rod. "Let’s kick some ass!"
Aeris leapt forward and plunged her rod into the first guard’s stomach
as Tseng opened fired with his .48 Pistol. Cloud let out a battle cry
and charged forward, chopping down the enemies with his Ultima Weapon.
The ultimate fight for these three warriors had begun.
"Any luck on their position?" Barret asked as he stepped onto the
"Who’s?" asked Cid, lighting a cigarette, and blowing a small plume of
smoke into the air before looking at Barret. "Red and Reeve’s, or
Aeris, Tseng and Cloud’s?" he asked.
"Any," Barret replied.
Cid shook his head. "Nada," he said. "Jerry’s working the sensors into
overdrive, and the others have been trying the PHS, but there’s no sign
that any of them are even alive," he said.
"Are you suggesting Cloud’s dead?" Tifa asked.
Cid smiled. "No, of course not. That little kid’s too tough for that,"
he said. "An’ so are the others. We’ll get ‘em back," he said.
"Why don’t we go to the source?" asked Reno, as he, Elena, Rude, Jason
and Kyle stepped into the room, followed by the others, entered.
Cid looked confused as they all stood there. "Whaddya mean?" he asked,
and Barret nodded to agree.
"You heard Greg," said Reno. "He said he had the help of Shinra. If
anyone knows where Cloud, Tseng, Red, Reeve and Aeris are…it’ll be
Palmer, Scarlet and Heidegger," he said, crossing his arms over his
chest, looking proud.
Cid was still momentarily confused. "And where do we go to find them,
Mr. Genius?" he asked mockingly.
Reno was about to speak, but Kyle Fox, the ex-Shinra Guard, spoke up.
"Right back where it all started," he said. "Midgar City."
"Let’s go," said Cid. "Jerry, plot us a course."
Jerry nodded. "I’m already plotting us the fastest route. Shinra
Landing Tower, Sir?" he asked smoothly.
"Yes," said Cid. "And bring out the Mega Engines. We’re gonna have to
act fast. We’re gonna pay Gya-ha-ha, Cya-ha-ha and Lard-boy a little
visit that they won’t forget," Cid said with a grin.
"To Shinra Incorporated HQ situated in Midgar City," Kyle said.
To Be Continued
Go on to Next Part
Author’s Note: I enjoyed writing this one. What? You think just because
that weirdo Greg is dead, that’s the end of it all? Oh-ho, you’ve got a
LOT more coming. Tseng had a lot more problems in the future. Just so
you know: Gya-ha-ha is Heidegger, Cya-ha-ha is Scarlet, and Lard-boy
is(you guessed it) Palmer. I’ll be writing Part 3 soon!