#83 – The Night More Than the Couch Was Stolen

Shell: “Well I hope they find these creeps! Not only did they beat up my sister and two hotties, but they took the stuff! Could they be even more evil??”

Originally Published: 4/10/01 . 31 pages

Synopsis
While Lark, Reeve and Irvine are relaxing in the ramble room, thieves come and rob them at gunpoint. Can their friends help them through this difficult time?

Ramble Milestones
Nothing this time.

This ramble is over drama city. I had such a positive response to my previous “all serious” ramble, so I tried it again. I’m not the biggest fan of this one. There is some decent stuff in here, but mostly this one is pretty skippable. I like all the sections with Shell and Rude and her burglar alarm. And the scene between Squall and Irvine is probably the best writing in the whole thing. Other than that, it’s kind of a bummer.

(it’s night time, and it’s pretty late. you can’t really tell since the ramble room has no windows, but take my word for it. lark is lying on the couch, reading something with a book light. reeve is at the table, typing something on a laptop. Irvine is lying on the floor doing sit-ups and counting quietly to himself. suddenly a very loud bang is heard. everyone is startled and they look around in confusion)

Reeve: “Did you hear that?”

Irvine: “What the hell was that?”

Lark: “I don’t know. It’s quiet now. Probably the wind.”

(we pan outside of the ramble room into the dark hallway. out of the shadows creeps four men dressed in black. they go into the ramble room and slam the door shut. we hear screaming and yelling, a struggle, punches thrown. a few thumps, a few gunshots, and there we shall fade out…)

………………………………………………………………………..

(the hallway about 15 minutes later. sephiroth, tseng, reno, zidane and rufus are walking down the hallway, looking concerned.)

Rufus: *insistently* “I heard screaming. I know I did.”

Zidane: “I heard it too.”

Reno: “From the ramble room? What could have happened?”

Sephiroth: “We’re about to find out.”

(the door to the ramble room is half open. seph pushes it open completely. the book light has fallen on the floor, lighting the room funny. the room has basically been cleaned out. anything not bolted to the to the floor, including the couch, the table, the chairs, and even the phone, is gone. reeve is curled up in a ball in one corner, shaking. lark appears to be passed out face down on the floor and a clearly battered irvine is lying on the floor, his gun across the room)

Zidane: *softly* “Oh my god…”

Sephiroth: “Lark!” *runs to her*

Tseng: “Reeve! Oh god!” *runs to him*

Reno: “Irvine!” *runs and kneels next to him* “Irvine!! Man?! Can you hear me?!”

Rufus: *looks sick* “What happened?”

Zidane: *still shocked* “Are they okay?”

(sephiroth checks lark’s breathing and her pulse, and she seems to be fine, just unconscious. but he is *not* happy)

Sephiroth: “Jenova forbid I catch who did this to her. I’ll #$%^&*% kill them.”

Zidane: *comes next to him* “Will she be okay?”

Sephiroth: “She’ll be fine. I just…” *puts a hand over his eyes*

Zidane: *looks at lark and pats seph on the back reassuringly*

Rufus: *comes over next to reno* “…He looks beat up. Is he okay?”

Reno: “I think so. I gave him a potion.”

Tseng: *shaking the shoulders of a hysterical reeve* “Reeve! Reeve! It’s okay! I’m here! What happened?”

Reeve: *looks up* “They’re….gone?”

Tseng: “Who’s gone?”

Reeve: “Tseng!!!” *throws his arms around tseng’s neck with such force that he almost knocks him down*

Tseng: “Umph!” *holds him* “Reeve! Reeve, what happened?”

Reeve: “Oh god, we were robbed!” *buries his head in tseng’s shoulder*

Tseng: “I can see that!”

Rufus: “Who would want to rob the ramble room?”

Sephiroth: “Who did this?!? I’ll kill them!”

Reeve: “I…” *sniff* “Didn’t see their faces, but, they–they had guns. And… And…. They shot them off… And I was so scared, I just… I just started to cry…” *starts crying again*

Tseng: *pets him* “Aw, honey, it’s okay. I’m here now. No one will hurt you.”

Zidane: “You don’t think the losers did this, do you?”

Sephiroth: “No. Even they wouldn’t stoop this low.”

Reno: “Reeve, what did they do to Lark and Irvine?”

Reeve: “It all happened so fast… I don’t remember… One pointed a gun at me, and I just stayed in the corner, because I was so scared.”

Tseng: *eyes widen* “Someone pointed a gun at you?”

Reeve: *nods and starts to cry again*

Tseng: *holds him tight* “I’ll kill them.”

Zidane: “Is Irvine okay?”

Reno: “Yeah, he’s just a little beat up. Lark…?”

Zidane: “Yeah, she’s just a little beat up too.” *shakes his head* “Who would beat up a girl?”

Sephiroth: “Someone I’m gonna kill. That’s who.”

Rufus: “Reeve, did you see what they looked like?”

Reeve: “Only two of them… I told you… I was scared…” *shakes his head* “I don’t want to think about it…”

Tseng: “You don’t have to, sweetie. Just relax.”

Reeve: *shakes his head and rests it on tseng’s shoulder* “I was such a coward. I couldn’t defend myself.”

Tseng: “You weren’t a coward, Reeve. It’s your life. You can’t play games with it.” *sighs and shuts his eyes* “I wish I could have been there to protect you.”

Reno: “I wonder how Irvine’s gun got across the room.” *pause* “You’d think he’d be able to take ’em.”

Rufus: “….What should we do now?”

Sephiroth: “I guess… Take them back to their rooms and watch over them until they’re conscious again.” *he picks lark up*

Reno: “Hey, Zidane, help me with Irvine.”

(reno and zidane pick irvine up. tseng helps reeve to his feet and takes his hand)

Rufus: “……Do you think… Do you think they’ll ever come back?”

Zidane: “Don’t think about that.”

Sephiroth: *snaps* “Look! Let’s just LEAVE! We can talk about this in the morning!”

(everyone leaves without another word)

………………………………………………………………………………

(we get into’s irvine’s mind, and he’s having a flashback…this is completely from his point of view, you’re seeing everything through irvine’s eyes…. ~~~~~ the four men enter the room, and he sits up.)

Irvine: “What the $%^&!?”

Lark: *screams*

Guy 1: “All right! Freeze! Nobody move!”

Reeve: *whimpers*

Irvine: “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” *stands*

Guy 1: “I said nobody move!” *takes out gun and points it at irvine*

Irvine: *freezes*

Lark: *screams* “Oh god!”

Reeve: “Oh my god…”

Guy 1: “Search this jerk.”

Lark: “Leave him alone!”

Guy 1: “And shut her up!”

Lark: *screams*

Guy 1: “NOW!”

(irvine can hear reeve start to cry, and one guy holds lark’s mouth shut as another hits her until she’s unconscious)

Guy 3: *finds irvine’s gun* “Won’t be needing this.”

Irvine: “……….”

Guy 3: *throws it across the room* “Piece of sh*t anyway.”

Irvine: *voice trembling* “Don’t hurt us.”

Guy 3: “Shut the #$%^ up!” *punches him*

(irvine goes flying backwards. reeve cries louder. guy 3 grabs him by the collar and uses him as a punching bag.)

Irvine: *cries*  “Stop! Stop! Please!”

(but he doesn’t stop, and irvine can feel blood running down his face just before he passes out……then irvine wakes with a start in his own bed, breathing heavily. reno, rufus and zidane hurry over)

Rufus: “Irvine!”

Zidane: “Are you okay?”

Reno: “It’s okay, man. It’s okay. It’s all over, man, you’re okay.”

Irvine: *looks around* “Where’s Lark? And Reeve?”

Rufus: “They’ll be okay.”

Irvine: “What happened??”

Zidane: “…The ramble room got robbed.”

Irvine: “Is Lark okay? Are you sure? …They hurt her…”

Reno: “She’ll be fine. Irvine, what happened?”

Irvine: “…………..I’m sorry.”

Reno: “What?”

Irvine: “……….” *hangs head*

Reno: “Irvine?”

Irvine: “Leave me alone.”

Reno: “I don’t think I should…”

Irvine: *looks up* “Leave me alone!”

Reno: *blinks* “Whoa, man, relax.”

Irvine: “I’m not talking crazy, Reno. I want all of you *out*! I want to be alone!”

Reno: *gets up* “Fine. Have it your way. I’ll see tomorrow.”

(zidane and rufus file out silently, but reno stops and turns back in the doorway)

Reno: “Look, I know you’re upset and stuff right now, but we stayed up all *&%^$#( night watching over you and the least you could do is manage one damn thank you.” *storms out*

(irvine falls back onto his pillows and glances at his clock, which reads 8:53. he heaves a sigh, and looks very sorry for himself as he shuts his eyes)

……………………………………………………………………………….

(now we’ll get into reeve’s head, and see everything through his eyes…~~~the four guys barge in, and reeve looks up from his computer. his eyes widen)

Irvine: “What the $%^&!?”

Lark: *screams*

Guy 1: “All right! Freeze! Nobody move!”

Reeve: *whimpers and slinks back*

Irvine: “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” *stands but he’s shaking*

Reeve: *whispers* “God help me…”

Guy 1: “I said nobody move!” *takes out gun and points it at irvine*

Irvine: *freezes*

Lark: *screams* “Oh god!”

Reeve: “Oh my god…” *trembles*

Guy 1: “Search this jerk.”

Lark: “Leave him alone!”

Guy 1: “And shut her up!”

Lark: *screams*

Guy 1: “NOW!”

(reeve watches them beat up lark and he covers his eyes and starts to cry, mumbling ‘oh god’ over and over)

Guy 3: “Won’t be needing this…………….Piece of sh*t anyway.”

Irvine: *voice trembling* “Don’t hurt us.”

Guy 3: “Shut the #$%^ up!”

(he can hear irvine start to get beat up and he cries louder. and he keeps crying until someone grabs him by the collar and throws him against the wall)

Guy 1: “Now you just shut up and be all quiet like, and we’ll leave you alone, understand?” *he takes out a gun, fires it twice into the wall and then points it at reeve*

(reeve curls up into a ball with a little nod, and he just cries, shaking like a leaf……….then he wakes up with a start and a yelp)

Reeve: *cold sweats* “Ah!!”

Tseng: *grabs him by the shoulders* “Reeve! Reeve, it’s okay. It’s over, remember? I’m here.”

Reeve: “I didn’t do anything!”

Tseng: “Shush, it’s okay.”

Reeve: “No, it’s not!” *turns to look at him* “What if one of them had died? I would never be able to forgive myself! I couldn’t do anything! Not a thing! I can’t even protect myself!”

Tseng: “I’ll make sure it won’t happen again.”

Reeve: “You can’t always be there to protect me, Tseng.” *he pushes him away and stands* “Face it, I’m a coward. I don’t want to depend on *you*.” *stomps out*

Tseng: *hangs head*

…………………………………………………………………………

(now we’ll get into lark’s head…ahhh!!!! hehe. ~~~~~~anyway, the four men enter the room…and lark’s eyes widen as she sits up more)

Irvine: “What the $%^&!?”

Lark: *screams as she edges away*

Guy 1: “All right! Freeze! Nobody move!”

Reeve: *whimpers*

Irvine: “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” *stands but he’s shaking*

Lark: *murmurs* “Oh god… Oh god…”

Guy 1: “I said nobody move!” *takes out gun and points it at irvine*

Irvine: *freezes*

Lark: *screams* “Oh god!” *stands up*

Reeve: “Oh my god…”

Guy 1: “Search this jerk.”

Lark: *sets jaw* “Leave him alone!”

Guy 1: “And shut her up!”

Lark: *screams and tries to get away*

Guy 1: “NOW!”

(they grab lark and one guy puts a hand over her mouth so she can’t scream while the other one beats her up. shes trying to scream, but she can’t, and she eventually passes out….and then lark wakes up in a cold sweat in her room, eyes wide and silent as she seems to gaze off into nothing…)

Sephiroth: “Lark! Oh thank god! You’re okay! You’re okay now!” *takes her by the shoulders and rests his head against hers* “I was so worried.”

Lark: “I was so scared.”

Sephiroth: “I know, I know.” *starts placing frantic kisses on the side of her neck*

Lark: “I couldn’t defend myself.”

Sephiroth: “Don’t worry. I’ll find them. And kill them.” *takes her face in his hands* “I’ll take care of it.”

Lark: *blinks* “Are Irvine and Reeve okay?”

Sephiroth: “Yes.”

Lark: “…How much did they take…?”

Sephiroth: “….We’ll see about that later.”

Lark: *sighs and leans her head on his shoulder* “I’m so glad you’re here.”

Sephiroth: “I’m so glad you’re okay.”

Lark: “I felt like I was so weak and useless… I should have been stronger than that.”

Sephiroth: “No one expects you to stand up to grown men.”

Lark: “……………..”

Sephiroth: “I love you.” *kisses the top of her head*

Lark: *getting up* “I want to see it.”

Sephiroth: *gets up* “Are you sure?”

Lark: *nods*

Sephiroth: “Okay…” *reaches out and takes her hand* “Let’s go.”

…………………………………………………………………………..

(they go back to the ramble room, where reno, zidane and rufus are looking around, surveying the damage. lark enters with sephiroth)

Lark: *gasp* “Omg….”

Guys: “Lark!” *they rush over*

Rufus: “Are you okay?”

Reno: “They didn’t, like, try to touch you, did they?”

Zidane: “Don’t worry, we’ll get this settled.”

Rufus: “I’ll replace everything, Lark. I promise.”

Lark: *small smile* “Thanks everyone. I’m okay, I’m just… I’m just a little shaken up, that’s all.”

Zidane: “They cleared out the TV room too….just so you know.”

Lark: *looks at rufus*

Rufus: “I’ll get better stuff than before. I swear.”

Lark: *hugs him* “Thank you.” *looks at the other guys* “Thanks to all of you.” *hugs the rest of them*

Sephiroth: “Has anyone called the cops?”

Reno: “Yeah, I did. You missed ’em. They wanna talk to Lark n’ Irvine n’ Reeve later about what the suspects looked like.”

Sephiroth: “Are you all right with that, Lark?”

Lark: “God yes. Please. I want them to find those creeps.”

Sephiroth: “Oh, we’ll find them all right.”

(tseng comes in, looking downcast)

Rufus: “Tseng–how’s Reeve?”

Tseng: “Physically, he’s fine. Mentally….he’s pretty upset.” *sigh* “He got mad when I said I’d make sure and protect him from now on.”

Sephiroth: “We’ll I’m going to be sure and protect Lark, and she’s not mad.”

Lark: “……………….”

Reno: “Yeah… Irvine threw a fit too. But he wouldn’t say why or nothin’.”

Lark: “……………….”

Rufus: “Isn’t he a SeeD?”

Lark: “No. He’s just a student.”

Rufus: “Yeah, but still, shouldn’t he be able to–“

Lark: *firmly* “Look, just give him some time alone, okay?” *she goes to the door then turns back* “Let me know when it’s time to go down to the station.”

Sephiroth: “Lark, do you–“

Lark: “No.” *leaves*

Sephiroth: *frowns*

Zidane: *sigh* “I guess there’s nothing to do now but wait.”

(he walks out)

Rufus: “Zidane’s right, I guess.”

(he walks out)

Reno: “I’m gonna go check and see if Irvine’s okay.”

(he walks out. sephiroth turns to tseng)

Sephiroth: “On a scale from one to ten, how upset are you right now?”

Tseng: “An eleven.”

Sephiroth: “Sounds about right.”

Tseng: “They pointed a gun at him, Sephiroth. What if they had shot him? What if they had *killed* him?” *shuts eyes* “I couldn’t live anymore.”

Sephiroth: “I feel the same way. ….I can’t let this go.”

Tseng: *looks at him* “I’m not usually about revenge…but…they hurt Reeve. And no one gets away with that.”

Sephiroth: “Then it’s agreed. When they find these losers…you and I will take care of them.”

Tseng: *nods*

(they shake on it)

…………………………………………………………………………………..

(later….they go to the police station. lark, irvine and reeve go inside, while reno, zidane, rufus, seph and tseng wait outside. tseng and seph lean against the wall, arms crossed, reno kind of paces, zidane leans against the other wall, and rufus just kind of stands there)

Rufus: “Why can’t we go in?”

Reno: *shakes his head*

Rufus: “What are they, their own little ‘we were in a robbery club?'”

Tseng: “Shut up, Rufus.”

Rufus: “You shut up!”

Reno: “Leave him alone!”

Rufus: *glares at him* “I wasn’t talking to you, Reno!”

Zidane: “Just shut up, Rufus.”

Rufus: *glares at zidane* “Don’t defend him!”

Sephiroth: *snaps* “Just shut UP, Rufus!”

Rufus: *blinks and says nothing*

Zidane: “Reno.”

Reno: *looks at him* “What?”

Zidane: “Did you get to talk to Irvine before?”

Reno: *shakes head* “He wouldn’t say nothin’.”

(there’s silence a moment)

Rufus: “You know… I was thinking.” *looks at all the guys as he says* “If I was in a robbery like that, what would I have done?”

(no one else says anything)

………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, inside, lark, irvine and reeve stop and look at one another before going inside)

Lark: “Don’t feel bad.” *hugs each of them* “Don’t worry about it.”

Reeve: *shakes his head* “I feel terrible about everything. What happened, my actions….my…self…”

Lark: “It’s okay, Reeve. You weren’t expected to do anything.”

Reeve: *mumbles* “That’s just it…”

Lark: *looks at irvine* “Irvine. It’s okay.”

Irvine: *shakes his head*

Lark: “I know you, Irvine. You couldn’t have stood up to those 4 guys.”

Irvine: *eyes flash* “Because I’m a coward. Not because I don’t have the power.”

Lark: “Irvine–“

Irvine: “It’s why I’m not a SeeD, Lark. Don’t try and pretend you understand how I feel right now.” *goes off*

Lark: *looks at reeve* “I feel weak too, but…”

Reeve: “I don’t want to have to depend on other people.” *he walks off after irvine*

Lark: *sighs* “Maybe… Maybe I don’t either.”

………………………………………………………………………..

(back outside, the guys are standing around in silence)

Reno: *hums softly to himself as he paces*

Rufus: *not moving as he leans against the wall, eyes closed*

Zidane: *brushes his hair out of his face from time to time*

Tseng: *taps foot*

Sephiroth: *drums fingers*

Rufus: “They’ve been in there awhile.”

(as if on cue, of course, the three come out silently, looking pretty withdrawn. the others quickly snap to attention and look at them)

Reno: “How did it go?”

Irvine: “…………..”

Lark: “Fine.”

Reeve: “Okay.”

Sephiroth: “Do they think they can catch the bastards?”

Lark: “They’re going to try.”

Reno: “You okay, Irvine?”

Irvine: “……….”

Zidane: “Maybe we better go home.”

Rufus: “Yeah.”

(they start walking back towards the car. reno walks besides irvine, but they’re silent. rufus and zidane walk together, sephiroth comes up besides lark and tseng hurries to catch up with reeve)

Tseng: “Don’t do this to me, Reeve.”

Reeve: “Do what?”

Tseng: “Don’t isolate me from you.”

Reeve: “Look, I have a lot on my mind right now.”

Tseng: “Can’t we talk about it? I’ll take care of it, Reeve.”

Reeve: “It’s not that simple.” *he quickens his pace and walks away*

Tseng: *sighs* “I know.”

Reno: “Irvine?”

Irvine: “…………”

Reno: “Say somethin’, man.”

Irvine: “……………”

Reno: “You know, maybe if you talked about it you’ll feel better.”

Irvine: *snaps* “You know what would make me feel better?! If you left me the $%^& alone!” *walks away*

Reno: *sets his jaw* “$%^& you!” *quieter* “I was just trying to help…”

Sephiroth: “You’ll let me know if they catch the guys, right?”

Lark: “Yes, Sephiroth.”

Sephiroth: “I really hope they catch them.”

Lark: *looks at him a little funny* “Yeah, me too.”

…………………………………………………………………………………………

(and so they go back to the ramble room and go their separate ways. rufus goes into the ramble room where shell is standing with rude)

Shell: *gasp* “What happened?! All the stuff is gone!” *turns to rude* “Did you take it, Rude?”

Rude: “No, Shell.”

Shell: “Are you sure?”

Rude: “Yes, Shell.” *sees rufus* “Oh, hello, Rufus.”

Rufus: “We were robbed.”

Shell: “WHAT?!”

Rufus: “Someone robbed the ramble room. They beat up Irvine and Lark and pointed a gun at Reeve.”

Shell: *eyes widen* “OMG! Are they okay??”

Rufus: “Yeah, they’re okay…I guess. We just got back from the police station.”

Shell: “Well I hope they find these creeps! Not only did they beat up my sister and two hotties, but they took the stuff! Could they be even more evil??”

Rude: “If they took my credit card, Shell.”

Shell: *gasp* “If they robbed the ramble room they could rob *my* room!” *starts dragging rude off* “You need to buy me the most expensive burglar alarm on the market, Rude.”

Rude: “Couldn’t I just stand guard, Shell?”

Shell: “No, Rude, I don’t trust you.”

Rude: *hangs head*

(shell drags rude out, leaving rufus alone. he sighs)

Rufus: “I guess… I’ll go replace everything.”

(he goes to walk out and nearly bumps into tseng)

Rufus: “Tseng? What are you doing?”

Tseng: “Wandering aimlessly and trying not to cry.”

Rufus: “… …. … .. …Oh. I’m sorry.”

Tseng: *shrugs* “There’s nothing I can do….yet.”

Rufus: “… … …I was going to replace everything. Want to come?”

Tseng: “Sure.”

(they leave.)

……………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, in loser land–here’s your comic relief!…or…not)

Scarlet: “I can’t believe we got robbed!”

Heidegger: “Gya haa haa! They took my tiddly winks!”

Kuja: “No…you ate those.”

Heidegger: “Oh right! Gya haa haa!” *burps*

Hojo: “They took my computer! Now what am I to do!?” *buries head in his hands* “All my research! Gone!”

Nida: “But you have all your research in those files in that cabinet.”

Hojo: “Not my science research, you fool! My years of hidden camera work! Do you know how many naked pictures–“

Nida: *covers ears* “La la la! That’s enough! No more!!”

Scarlet: “Skeevy old man. Good thing they didn’t get my tips.” *lights a cigarette*

Nida: “That’s because it was only 10 cents, you whore.”

Scarlet: “It’s more than you get!”

Nida: “Nuh uh! I’m a SeeD! I get paid every five minutes!”

Scarlet: “Squall gets more!”

Nida: “Shut up!!”

Kuja: “I’m lucky they didn’t take any of my diamonds.”

Hojo: “That’s because you’re always wearing it all, my pet.”

Kuja: *admires diamond necklace* “Well, they’re almost as pretty as I am.” *one of his bracelets fall off*

Heidegger: *picks up bracelet and goes to eat it* “Gya haa haa! Carbony!”

Kuja: *bitch slaps him and grabs it back* “Get your greasy hands off my jewels!”

Hojo: “I’m getting a strange feeling of deja vu…”

Nida: *whines* “They stole all my trophies!”

Scarlet: “You don’t have any trophies.”

Nida: “….Shut up, whore!”

Heidegger: “Gya haa haa! Who’s up for tiddly winks?”

Scarlet: “You ate all of them, you jack ass!”

Heidegger: “Gya haa haa! I’m stupid!”

Nida and Scarlet: *exchange a look*

……………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, back in the ramble complex, lark is in her room, sitting on her bed, reading a book (?!?!? me? a book? it’s probably something i’ve read a million times. that or ann rice. sephiroth is pacing, jumping at every little noise, masamune in hand)

Lark: *puts the book down* “Sephiroth. What the hell are you doing?”

Sephiroth: “Patrolling.”

Lark: “Patrolling *what*?”

Sephiroth: “In case anyone *unwanted* comes around.”

Lark: “Would you relax? They already cleaned out the place. Why the hell would they come back?”

Sephiroth: “I think you’re taking this too lightly.”

Lark: “I am not! You’re taking it too heavily! I’m not the $%^#$*& Queen of England!”

Sephiroth: “Well that’s how important you are to me. *More* important.”

Lark: *sigh*

Sephiroth: “I just want to make sure no one else hurts you!”

Lark: “I don’t want to get hurt either! It was bad enough I couldn’t protect myself at *all*.”

Sephiroth: “No one expects *you* to stand up to four big guys.”

Lark: *looks away* “I know.”

(sephiroth puts the masamune down and sits besides her on the bed)

Sephiroth: “Lark, look at me.” *she does* “I love you. I’m going to do everything in my power to make sure no one ever hurts you again. And if and when they catch those jerks I’ll make sure they never hurt *anyone* again.”

Lark: “….You mean…??”

Sephiroth: “Don’t worry about it.” *embraces her* “It will be okay. I promise.”

Lark: *closes her eyes* “Okay.”

……………………………………………………………………………..

(meanwhile, reno is dragging squall to irvine’s room)

Reno: “You have to talk to him. I know if he’ll talk to anyone, it’ll be you.”

Squall: “Why me?”

Reno: “‘Cause you’re the leader, man.”

Squall: “I don’t *wanna* be the leader!”

Reno: “Too bad!” *knocks on the door*

Irvine’s voice: “Get lost.”

Reno: *hits squall*

Squall: “Ow…” *loudly* “Uh, Irvine? It’s Squall.”

Irvine’s voice: “Oh… Come in.”

Reno: *gives squall the ‘i told you so’ face*

(squall goes in and shuts the door. irvine is sitting on his bed, shoulders slumped and just looking sorry for himself. he’s got his hat in his hands and he’s playing with it)

Squall: “Hello, Irvine.”

Irvine: “Reno told you what happened, didn’t he.”

Squall: “Yeah.”

Irvine: “I knew it.”

Squall: “He’s worried about you. He’s your friend.” *he comes and sits next to irvine*

Irvine: “I know. But that doesn’t mean he can understand.”

Squall: “Maybe not like you do, but you could explain. He’s willing to listen.”

Irvine: “…………..”

Squall: “…So what happened to you, Irvine?”

Irvine: *hangs head and mumbles* “I’m a coward, Squall.”

Squall: “….No you’re not.”

Irvine: “Yes I am. I can’t take pressure. Never could. I can’t act on my own. It’s why I can’t be a SeeD. I have the skills, but, I just don’t got the heart.”

Squall: “Yes you do.”

Irvine: “No, I don’t!!” *gets to his feet and speaks firmly to squall* “One Ultima spell and those guys would have been wiped out. But I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t even fire my damn gun. And you’re telling me I *do*?!”

Squall: *nods* “Yes.”

Irvine: *turns away* “Whatever, man.”

Squall: *stands* “You have the courage, Irvine. It’s in there. You just don’t trust yourself.”

Irvine: “……………….”

Squall: “You don’t trust much, do you.”

Irvine: “What do you know?”

Squall: “You don’t trust women. You don’t trust your friends. And you don’t even trust yourself.”

Irvine: “…………………….”

Squall: “I think you understand me.”

(squall goes to leave, and when he reaches the door, irvine whirls around and sort of glares at him)

Irvine: “Who the hell made you an expert on trust, Mr. Loner?”

Squall: “We learn lessons, Irvine. Look at the present. Who’s alone now?”

(and with that he steps outside and shuts the door leaving irvine, his head hung, alone.)

……………………………………………………………………………………..

(meanwhile, rufus, tseng and zidane have just returned and are outside, heading up the steps)

Rufus: “Well that’s all taken care of.”

Zidane: “It’s good that everything will be back by tomorrow.”

Tseng: “That was really nice of you to replace everything, Rufus.”

Rufus: “…It was nice to see my money put towards something other than the bank.”

(they step onto the porch where reeve is sitting on the porch swing, curled up in a ball. he doesn’t see them, but they see him. tseng stares at him and zidane pokes rufus in the ribs)

Zidane: “Let’s go tell Lark.” *heads inside*

Rufus: “Okay.” *whispers to him* “I told you people use the porch swing.” *follows*

(when rufus and zidane are gone, tseng goes over and sits down, causing reeve to look up)

Tseng: “Hello, Reeve.”

Reeve: “Hi.”

Tseng: “Do you want to talk?”

Reeve: *shakes head no*

Tseng: “Why not?”

Reeve: “It’s not important, okay? This is *my* problem. Not yours. Leave me alone already.”

(tseng gets kind of stiff for a minute, then he clenches his jaw, takes off his wedding ring, opens up reeve’s hand and firmly puts it in reeve’s hand before closing it again)

Tseng: “Think about what this means.” *he goes off*

(a tear slips down reeve’s cheek, then he curls into a ball again.)

…………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, in lark’s room…)

Lark: “That was *so* nice of Rufus to replace everything, don’t you think, Sephy?”

Sephiroth: “Yes.”

Lark: “Disasters always bring people together….although in a way that’s not very good.”

(the phone rings)

Lark: “Answer that, Sephiroth?”

Sephiroth: *picks it up* “Hello?….Oh, just a moment.” *covers the receiver and offers it to lark* “It’s the police.”

Lark: *eyes widen and she grabs for it* “Hello?……..Oh, you did? Oh, that’s great………….Oh wow……Oh great…..Yes, I see….Uh huh……Uh huh…..Oh, thank you. Thank you very much, officer….Yes, good-bye.” *hangs up and grins* “They caught them!”

Sephiroth: *stands up on alert* “They did?”

Lark: “Yes! And they confessed! And they found our stuff! Which kind of sucks now, but I’m so happy!”

Sephiroth: *dazed* “Yeah, me too…”

Lark: “I’m gonna go tell Reeve and Irvine.” *she runs out*

(sephiroth takes out the masamune, then he opens the door and sees tseng coming down the hallway)

Sephiroth: “Did you hear?”

Tseng: *sigh* “Yeah, Lark just told me.”

Sephiroth: “You still in?”

Tseng: “…………”

Sephiroth: *glaring at him* “Tseng, we had an *agreement*.”

Tseng: “I know. ……. …..”

Sephiroth: “So what’s the problem? I thought Reeve was more important to you than anything.”

Tseng: *sigh* “He is…”

Sephiroth: “Then what the hell’s the problem?!”

Tseng: *shakes head as if to clear it* “Nothing… Nothing. I’ll do it. I don’t break my word.”

Sephiroth: “I knew I could count on you.”

………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, lark goes out on the porch and sees reeve. she looks kind of concerned and confused as she goes over and sits)

Lark: “Reeve?”

Reeve: *looks up wiping away tears* “Oh, hi.”

Lark: “What’s wrong?”

Reeve: “Nothing.”

Lark: “Nothing? You’re crying.”

Reeve: *hangs head* “I’m a fool.”

Lark: “What do you mean?”

Reeve: “If I’m so smart, why can’t I tell the person I’m going to spend the rest of my *life* with what’s bothering me?”

Lark: *quietly* “….I don’t know, Reeve. Only you know that answer.”

Reeve: “……..I don’t want him to know how weak I feel….. ….How weak I *am*.”

Lark: “You’re not weak, Reeve. You stood up to Heidegger and Scarlet–you stood up to Shinra when no one else could.”

Reeve: *shakes head* “That’s not the same. I….I can’t fight back. I just can’t.”

Lark: “Me neither. And I know it’s scary. And I know we all want to be able to defend ourselves, but Reeve, face it. Tseng’s not going to laugh at you for fearing for your life! He loves you.” *quieter* “I thought about it for awhile, what it feels like *now*, after *that*. And…even though I’m gonna tell Seph not to play security guard anymore, I know that there is no way I would *ever* be able to fight back against that. Not everyone’s a hero.  We’re just…….people.” *puts a hand on his shoulder* “See what I mean?”

Reeve: *nods slowly* “I guess…I shouldn’t feel sorry for myself then.”

Lark: *shakes her head* “No one’s laughing at us, Reeve. No one.”

(he hugs her and rests his head on her shoulder)

Lark: “They caught the guys, Reeve. And they confessed.”

Reeve: “Oh, thank god. Thank god.”

Lark: *smiles* “Yeah. So, you want to come break the news to Irvine with me?”

Reeve: *separates from her a little and nods his head* “Yeah. Yeah, I do.”

………………………………………………………………………………………

(back inside, reno’s sitting outside irvine’s door, flipping through an issue of seventeen idly as lark and reeve approach)

Reno: “Now I remember why I liked this magazine so much!” *looks up* “Oh, hey, Lark. Reeve.”

Lark: “Is Irvine in there?”

Reno: “Yeah, but I’ve been knocking on and off for half an hour and he won’t answer. Ever since I had Squall go in and talk to him…” *shakes head* “I don’t know.”

Lark: *frowns* “I see. Well, if you get to talk to him, tell them they caught the guys who did this, and they confessed.”

Reno: *gets up* “Really? No kidding?”

Lark: “Yeah. All that’s left is the trial.”

Reno: “That’s great.”

Lark: “Good luck with Irvine. We’ll see you later.”

Reno: “Thanks. I’ll need it.”

(lark and reeve leave–heh, that rhymed!–and then reno knocks on the door again)

Reno: “Irvine?” *nothing* “Irvine, I know you can hear me.” *nothing* “Hey, fine. I just wanted to let you know they caught the guys, okay? And they confessed and everything cool like that so it’s all good, okay?” *nothing* “Okay. Just thought I’d let you know.”

(he goes to walk away but then the door opens, and reno turns back to see irvine has poked his head out)

Irvine: “They caught ’em, huh?”

Reno: “Yup.”

Irvine: *looks away* “I’m sorry.”

Reno: “You wanna talk about it?”

Irvine: *shakes his head* “No… I just… I just wanna put it behind me…for now.”

Reno: *nods* “Okay.”

Irvine: *sighs* “Hey, Reno.”

Reno: “What?”

Irvine: “….Wanna go out and get a beer?”

Reno: *smiles* “Sure, man. Sure.”

…………………………………………………………………………………..

(back in the actual ramble room, tseng and sephiroth are talking quietly when lark and reeve enter)

Tseng: “Oh. Reeve.”

Reeve: “I need to talk to you.”

Tseng: “Uh…oh. Okay.” *to seph* “I’ll be right back.” *he and reeve leave*

Lark: “Is Tseng in on it too?”

Sephiroth: “Huh? On what?”

Lark: “Don’t do it.”

Sephiroth: “Do what?”

Lark: “I didn’t think you were serious.”

Sephiroth: “I’m always serious.”

Lark: *shakes head* “That may be the way you do things, Sephiroth, but I let things get settled under the law.”

Sephiroth: “……….I really would feel better if they were de–“

Lark: “NO!”

(it’s so loud and so sudden that it actually makes seph jump)

Lark: “No. Sephiroth, promise me you won’t kill them.”

Sephiroth: *blinks* “You want to let them get away with this?”

Lark: “They aren’t! They were *arrested*, Sephiroth, and now they’re going to jail. We got our stuff back, we got *new* stuff, and no one was seriously hurt. It’s fine.”

Sephiroth: *shakes head* “…..I don’t understand your standard of justice.”

Lark: “You don’t have to understand it. I just want you to abide by it.”

Sephiroth: *looks at her* “I love you. I’ll do whatever you want.”

Lark: *smiles* “I love you too.” *pause* “And whatever I want, huh?” *sly smile*

Sephiroth: *grins* “Oh yeah.”

Lark: *grabs his hand* “Great! Then let’s go sit on the porch swing! It’s such a nice day out!”

Sephiroth: *laughs* “That’s not what I had in mind, but sure.”

…………………………………………………………………………………..

(meanwhile, tseng and reeve have gone back to talk in their room)

Tseng: “So now you want to talk?”

Reeve: “I think I’ve been brought to my senses.” *he holds his hand out with the ring in it* “I love you.”

Tseng: “I love you too.”

Reeve: “I didn’t want you to think less of me…” *hangs head* “…I was thinking less of myself.”

Tseng: “Reeve, I just wanted to be there for you when you needed me.”

Reeve: *holds the ring up* “I know what this means now.” *he takes tseng’s hand and is poised to put the ring back on* “I won’t keep things from you anymore.” *meets tseng’s eyes* “Take me back?”

Tseng: “I wasn’t aware I ever let you go.”

(reeve puts the ring back on his finger and lean forward and kisses him. we’ll then fade outside where the sun is going down, and we see seph and lark cuddled on the porch swing, while reno and irvine drive off. we then see shell and rude getting out of another car, and rude has a bunch of heavy boxes to carry)

Shell: “Come on, Rude! I want those iron bars installed in my windows by twilight!”

Rude: “I wish you really wanted Twilight to install them, Shell.”

Shell: “We want to be *safe*, don’t we, Rude?”

Rude: “I know you do, Shell.”

Shell: *gives him a look*

Rude: “Yes, Shell. We. As in you and I. The happy couple.”

Shell: “Damn straight, Rude. And don’t forget the barb wire!” *she goes inside*

(lark and seph watch as rude drags the boxes inside, hanging his head. then they turn and smile at each other)

Sephiroth: “I’m not whipped like that.”

Lark: *grabs him around the neck and pulls him down for a kiss* “I’m just not mean like that.”

(they kiss, and in the background, we hear rufus yelling distantly…. something about reeve and tseng…)

THE END

Advertisements
This entry was posted in The Golden Era and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s