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26 May 2006 @ 02:53 am
A meeting - Loz/Vincent  
Summary: After separating from Yazoo to look for Ula, Loz bumps into Vincent and things are discussed.

Vincent: It would never change, this he knew. Clear to him as a crisp morning and seemingly echoing through out his mind in much the same fashion that his demons purred and hissed; never-ending and continuous. Life would bring him nothing but misery and suffering for all that he had done and left undone, so perhaps he would try seeking his redemption and peace within death instead.

Stepping across the soft grasses until they broke into easily permeated sands, Vincent cast his gaze across the last shoreline before he would reach his home in Ajit; if he still had a home in Ajit. The brink of Midgar's northern most shore had never looked so desolate to him before, lacking life to such an extent that he began to wonder if perhaps the universe was trying to tell him something. Something he already knew, but telling him it none the less. He was alone, and most certainly always would be; even with a son...if you could call him that. Vincent was no father, and Cloud was most certainly no more than a battle companion. Former battle companion. Reddened eyes drifting along as his heavy boots and metal tips sank within the sands and the red cloak around his shoulders billowed slightly with the breeze coming off the water. Hair in his face, thick gold on his arm. Monstrous. The way it should be. Only his gaze settling on a silver haired figure in the distance caused his steps to hesitate and his eyes to narrow. Why here? Why now?

Loz: "Ula, I should imagine that this of all places is not one that you should wander off in." He hadn’t had the frame of mind to bring her leash with him on their trip, no, that was still sitting in the drawer of his bedroom back at Cloud's apartment though he was kicking himself now after having spent an hour searching for her. "If Yazoo had a cell it'd be much easier," but his brother hadn't brought one with him and so Loz turned, oblivious to his surroundings as he scooped Ula up into his arms and began to pad back along the beach.

As he began walking back with Ula peeping and fluffing up his feathers, he smiled and hugged her tightly, glad she was safe and when he finally looked ahead he frowned. Pace slowing a little, he squinted, eyes blinking out sand that the breeze brought with it as it blew past and bare feet sunk into the wet sand. Something seemed familiar but he wasn't sure why or how... a flash of red, a swirl... gun fire all surfaced from his memory and he slowed before coming to a stop. Ajit.

He didn't really remember much, it still seemed slightly hazy but the person ahead still seemed familiar and shifting Ula to one side, resting her in the crook of his arm, he allowed his hand to slide down to rest against the holster at his thigh.

The Hound was back at their base but from what he could remember, a gun would be better if the situation arose and anxiously he waited. Did Cloud send him? Were they the enemy now, or was it a mere coincidence... but not much had been just a coincidence lately and he grew worried for Yazoo's safety.

Vincent: Loz. The eldest and possibly strongest in pure brute strength from what he recalled, though he was dressed differently and seemingly carrying a fluffy chocobo. Not at all the fierce enemy he remembered, but then again, neither had been Kadaj when they crossed each others paths within the church. It had been awhile since he thought of the youngest of the three, his wonderings on why his offer had gone ignored or forgotten falling away with the rest of his questioning of his own importance. Clarity enlightened the truth, he was nothing now and there was no one that needed him to continue existing.

Arms folded at his chest, Vincent remained still as some unexplainable curiosity grabbed a hold of his mind and held fast to it. When no one else on the planet seemed to give a seconds glance to him, when he sought out a means of final escape, why would that be the time for the three brothers to resurface into his consciousness? The embodiments of second chances, and redemption and he seemed to find himself within their proximity at every moment he started to question the worth of effort put into finding his peace.

Narrowed eyes looking across the distance that still stretched between them, Vincent allowed the demons to do the thinking for him until their volume was enough to block out the soft sounds of waves crashing upon the shore. A hand that had moved to the holster on the other mans thigh was noted, and he did little more than turn his gaze away with a shift of his hair in the wind and another gentle billow of the heavy red fabric that weighed on his shoulders. If the other was a threat and found it prudent to shoot him in the back, perhaps he would be wise enough to aim for his skull and he would have nothing left to worry about.

Loz: What is he doing? The memories whilst still a little vague in areas were strong in other's and this person had seemed a lot more vibrant the last time they'd met and when no attack came, no gun drawn, Loz let his hand move slightly away from the holster, his fingers twitching.

What happened next though, Loz really couldn't believe and he just stared for a moment, eyes widening a little before his hand shifted away from his holster and back up to hold Ula more securely. Why wasn't he attacking? Why was he actually turning away from him? Curious now, Loz took a slow step forwards and when no attack was forth coming he began a slow, cautious walk forwards, step heavy and firm, his hand ready to go for his gun at any moment. When he drew to a stop a little while away, his head tilted slightly, and his eyes narrowed.

Loz: "What do you want?" He called out in a slight growl, suspicion growing. Was he a trap? Or had he somehow found himself on this beach away from other's just like they had? He didn't know much about this person other than the fact he'd rescued Cloud in Ajit.

Vincent: Darkness enveloped him for a brief moment in the midst of the nearly setting sun, his eyes falling closed and blocking away the light that blanketed the beach before he parted them and allowed it to re-enter his consciousness. Shimmering light hit and reflected off of the rolling waves that approached and then receded back to whence they came, he simply remained still as the wind too liberties with his free flowing strands of hair and the cloth that covered his form.

If you'd stop admiring the scenery you'd take note that he is talking to you, Valentine.

Turning his head slightly, the most certainly elder of the two looked at the other with a levelled gaze. His eyes almost as dead as he technically was, with the fire fading from them at a rate so quick he barely had time to question whether or not he wanted it to happen. What was the point in fighting it any longer, anyway? He had no clear idea of what he wanted, why he stopped walking along the beach towards the port that would bring him home for the last time. Why it was the mere sight of the silver haired brother had him hesitating, pausing and looking around for a slight second almost expectant of seeing the youngest. It was a mystery to him, but curiosity had drawn him to do much more foolish things. Like falling in love.

"Is Kadaj with you?"

Loz: "What's that got to do with you?" Loz still wasn't sure about the situation so the less the other man knew the better... but there was something about him that hit a nerve... he was giving off the same sort of vibes that Cloud had once done that time in the bathroom months before, despair, and something else but he was likely imagining things, but it still didn't explain the other's attitude.

"Aren't you hot?" Head tilting once more as his eyes closed briefly against the breezy sand attack, he rubbed at a dot of sweat from his forehead. If he was hot, then surely the other in his vast amount of clothes and fabric had to be. Shifting Ula as she pepped slightly and made a soft warking sound, he took another step closer.

"Did Cloud send you? Because if he did we're not going back." Not yet, not ever maybe, and it dawned on him that he'd said we're rather than I so unless the long haired man was stupid, he'd likely pick up on it.

Vincent: It had nothing to do with him, not really, not truly so he let it drop after presuming that Kadaj was simply off with the other brother somewhere while Loz was taking the fluff ball of a chocobo for some semblance of a walk. It still didn't explain why the brothers were so far away from Midgar, and most likely without Cloud's knowing. He has spoken of many things with his... son, but details regarding those directly affected in Clouds life were never asked for so he was unaware at the current time. Not that it truly mattered, but curiosity and the want for knowledge was always a weakness. Or perhaps it was simply that he was subconsciously seeking a reason to stay...death would be so unlike him.

"The temperature doesn't bother me anymore." Might as well ask what he thought of the weather, and if he was on the beach to get a tan. Small talk between them that would shift this way in that in mindless pleasantries as one tried to size up the other within the depths of their minds. "I am here of my own accord." Not going back? A conflict of sorts then. Could that be the source of Cloud's downtrodden demeanour when he had seen him within Rocket Town, and why the normally strong willed young man was so easily...broken? His face drew back within its normal placid and stoic expression, eyes shifting over to Loz and then back to the shimmering waves brushing up against the shore. "Why have you run from Cloud?"

Loz: "What are you, a refrigerator man?" The question was rather stupid but Loz was still ansty about being so close to someone who possibly wanted to kick his arse for past wrong deeds that Cloud seemed so intent on always bringing up and as he didn't know this person, he could just be waiting for the right time to shoot him... hopefully Ula would be freed though if that came to it.

"Run? I have not run from him and I never will. I won't run from anyone." And he growled softly, hackles rising at the assumption he would. "We discussed going away for a small break for some time and it just happened a little sooner than planned." So Cloud hadn't sent the guy after him, which meant it likely was just an accidental run in, even if the guy had explained that already.

His broodiness reminded him a little of the blond and Loz frowned slightly, they'd left to get away from that he thought, but he wasn't really sure what was fully behind his brother wanting to go so abruptly. Following the other's gaze out to the water for a moment, he took a calming breath before hugging Ula to him. "I need to get back to Yazoo."

Vincent: It seemed a little ridiculous to him that in spite of his reasons for returning home, the unexplainable urge to find amusement in the question brought a quiet 'Heh' from his lips as the corners cocked up in some vague semblance... of a grin. He had no clear idea why the question entertained him so, perhaps the imagery that followed provided by Galian in the darkness of his mind or it could have just been the absurdity of its randomness. "I am Vincent. Valentine. No connections to refrigerators of any sort, I have just grown used to wearing layers of clothing. It's the cold that bothers me." If the younger male felt it opportune to ask, the least he could do was answer.

Turning back towards the silver haired brother, Vincent gave a nod of his head in silent greeting and farewell as he moved to step past the other and continue on his way. Ajit still beckoned to him, even if he had something else to think of in the mean time that may or may not change what decision he had come to make.

There were small things the other said, minor things that other people don't give a second glance to but to Vincent they are as clear as screams. With the smile having faded back to sheer nothingness, Vincent let them shift through his mind one more time to see if perhaps he had missed something. Kadaj spoke of living with his brothers, and if he knew anything from the youngest from their short interaction; he was beyond loyal to the two elders that claimed brotherhood with him. Loz had mentioned they, in a plural form, were not returning. It was unlikely they left Kadaj behind. And now, the utterance of a need to return to Yazoo... the middle one...but not 'my brothers' or 'the others'; Just Yazoo. So either the boy he had met in the church had gotten lost during their 'small break' accidentally, or he had gotten himself lost intentionally. "When you find Kadaj, tell him I send my regards."

Loz: "Ah..." Loz still looked a little lost but shrugged slightly. Somewhere in the dark recess of his mind though supplied him with a little fact and shortly after, he was spouting off another question. "Wait, Isn't Valentine a human holiday?" He'd seen things on television advertising the holiday and he swore that, that was the name. Head tipping back, he squinted slightly at this Vincent fellow and hmm'd slightly. He didn't really look like the hearts and flowers, and fluffy little wings type. Trying to ignore the mental image of Vincent with fluffy wings, sparkly eyes and lots of hearts dancing around him, Loz decided to concentrate on more important things.

Like the fact he was sinking into the sand.

Stepping away from the soggy stuff, he padded around a little until he found a firmer area and coughed a little before looking back over to Vincent. "I'm Loz... Though considering you know Kadaj by name you probably knew that already." He wasn't sure how much the other man knew about them but the fact he hadn't looked surprised (though other than the thing that could appear a slight smile, he wasn't sure if the other was capable of more than 'stoic') meant he probably knew already about their not being dead long before this meeting. Which meant that Cloud had likely told more people about their existence and he was glad that Shinra hadn't turned up on their doorstop with a friendly kick to the face.

"You know Kadaj?" The tone implied that Vincent knew him from more than their brief stint in Ajit before and that made him confused, but it appeared he wasn't a threat. Not yet, anyway.

Vincent: "In some cultures it is meant to celebrate love and joy though few know that the holiday itself was spurned from a massacre." The questions were enough to still his retreat, the elder male turning on his heel again to regard the other; almost waiting for the next question that he could respond to with his years upon years of useless knowledge. It would be a lie to say he didn't miss it, this feeling of being almost... useful. Wasn't that the root of the problem though?

"I have actually never learned your name before this moment, only Kadaj's but that was some time ago." A pause as Vincent regarded the other in silence for a moment and nodded simply to himself. "It is good to meet you." The ex-Turk saw promise in the youngest brother, some glimmer of an indescribable inkling that led him to believe that second chances weren't always wasted on those that didn't' deserve them. It seemed to be proving true for the eldest the longer that Vincent stood there and conversed with him. He still couldn't figure out why, of all times, did they now cross each others paths.

"Kadaj and I have met before, we talked and sparred and I extended an invitation to my home should he want to seek out knowledge." Or companionship, either one would suffice. "That was months ago, I have not heard from him since." It struck him as a possibility that if Kadaj wasn't the type to leave his brothers behind indefinitely, and Loz and Yazoo were alone; that something could have happened to the youngest brother. A flicker of worry within his crimson gaze before he shifted it away from his almost absentminded study of the others features. "Is he alright?"

Loz: "Charming." What was it with naming a cutesy holiday after a massacre? Were people going to turn Sephiroth's antics into a world peace drive next or something? He thought human's were very odd and didn't dare ask for more details about the name but it was nice to have his questions, however stupid answered. It was something he really wasn't use to.

"Ah... I guess it's not hard to recognize us though?" Even without all the leathers, he hadn't meant that many people who weren't ancient that had silver hair and whilst their eyes could be hidden with sunglasses, a hat was really to much to wear in the head, even if the other man made him feel hot just by looking at him. He couldn't guess at the amount of layers he probably had on and he was going to ask when something else caught his eye. "Ooooh shiny." Realizing he'd said that out loud Loz forced his gaze away and shifted Ula as some sort of defence mechanism and she pecked at him for it.

"He never told us." And Loz worried that he hadn't been there for him enough to be told such a thing, or maybe Kadaj had feared them reacting to the knowledge in the same way they'd reacted to his feelings for Cloud and misc other things and he frowned a little, nodding slightly. "We haven't really had contact with anyone other than Cloud and Za..." He stopped shortly before he spoke too much and shifted a little. He'd only just managed to stop telling the other about Zack and whilst he'd not spoken to the guy himself, the fact he'd been on friendly terms with Sephiroth was enough to make him growl abruptly.

"He left us a few days ago, needed to... get his thoughts together." He and Yazoo had been planning to head after him soon, but other than the direction of the tracks that first day he didn't really know what their chances of finding him were. "I hope he is."

Vincent: Turning to fully face the water before them, Vincent almost took some semblance of enjoyment out of the breeze billowing back the heavy fabric and long tresses of raven hair away from his shoulders and spine. He never thought of whether or not he was too warm in his usual attire until the question was posed to him, and suddenly he was glad for the wind to cool him slightly. "I recognize you based on memory not rumo...."

He paused mid sentence when he saw what Loz had glanced towards, his left hand raising slightly as he let his eyes fall down to the immaculate surface of the golden claw. Its razor like tips clicking against his palm slightly as he closed his fist and then after a moment of looking at it; slipped it to his side and out of sight. That was a line of questioning he would rather avoid.

"I am sure that Kadaj had his reasons for keeping our encounter to himself, though that would be for him to answer should you wish to question it." Nothing severe had happened outside of the slight cut he had given him with his gauntlet to end the spar, but the scratch was better than a bullet wound and by the end they were both in better spirits. Perhaps, when they found him, he would inquire on another match.

Suddenly so optimistic, Valentine? Only moments ago you were ready to suck on your pistol like a pacifier.

"If I run across his path before you do, would you like me to give him a message?"

Loz: Biting back a small, childish "Awww" when the shiny was pulled away, Loz took a brief moment to wonder why the other had such a thing, then he wondered if anyone ever tried to steal it off him to sell for the shiny goodness, but Loz started to wonder if he and Yazoo shared a cracky brain together and he tried not to think on it anymore.

"I know... it's just a slight surprise, seems we're running into a lot of people, though you seem a lot nicer than some. At least you didn't end up staying with us," and he babbled on about several other things that annoyed him before he trailed off, hand moving to the back of his neck to scratch lightly, a sign of embarrassment that he'd once again gone completely odd the subject. Why he was even talking to this person so easily, he wasn't sure, but if Kadaj had met him and been fine with it, then perhaps he was one of the people of their past that wouldn't haunt them.

"Tell him..." I'll see on him next time so he can't run off again. "...We miss him, if you see him before us." He would call his brother anyway as soon as he got back, but a message would hopefully remind him that they were waiting for him still.

Vincent: Vincent fell silent, as he was prone to doing, pondering over various things that happened to shift through his mind as his demons supplied commentary and images bringing forth ideas he hadn't considered prior. Had he ever disliked the silver haired men, even when they were a possible threat? Did he find them to be evil after rescuing the Turks form their impending demise, and wished on them a quick ending? At any point in following and watching them, did he feel it prudent to step in and perhaps ...stop them? ...No. Never actually. They were there, within the forest, doing whatever it was they saw fit and though it struck him as fascinating enough to observe; he had never disliked them. Not even for attacking the Turks, but it was Shin-Ra that sealed his own fate so...he would be lying to himself to say he gave a shit about Rufus and his dogs. Rescuing them was merely the right thing to do, and Chaos wouldn't have let him forget it if he let them die. Not even when the three attacked and nearly defeated Cloud did he hold any great malice towards them. Watching from the distance to see if he would be needed and then stepping forth when he was. Intentional aim that proved more as a distraction and defence than an actual attack; if he wanted to he could have kill all three of them then and there with any great effort. Chaos would have seen to that. But these men, these Silver Haired Men...they had never been a threat to him, and he had never actively perused their destruction. How fascinating.

"I will give Kadaj your message then, should I come across him. Though I am fairly certain he already knows." What brother wouldn't know that his siblings missed him? Stepping away, Vincent let his arms swing at his sides subtly before he cast a glance over his shoulder and after a moment of deliberation with himself; parted his lips to speak once again. "I extend the offer I had given Kadaj to you as well, Loz. Yazoo if he wishes it." It seemed, apparently, that they still had a lot left to learn; and he most certainly had a lot left to teach.

Perhaps he could wait another day before welcoming death to his door.
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