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Title: Another Lesson in Love and Trust
Author: lilymoon1
Fandom: Final Fantasy VII
Pairing(s): Zack/Reno/Cloud
Rating: PG
Spoilers: none
Warnings: worksafe, unapologetic fluffiness
Disclaimer: All FFVII characters created and owned by Square Enix. I make nothing from the stories.
A/N: Since I seem to be obsessed right now with writing these three. I'll just say all the scenes are now part of an arc I'll call Trioverse. Yay, my own 'verse! Ahem, yeah.

Cloud was, for some unknown reason, avoiding them and had been all week. Usually when Zack was in residence in the compound Cloud could be found just by finding Zack first. The last few days had been filled with one excuse after another left on little pieces of sticky paper tacked to Zack's door. Too tired, pulling an extra shift of guard duty, needing time to cram for exams, the excuses had piled up until Zack had been ready to storm the blond's barracks. Then the mission orders had come, and Zack had been called away for at least a week. His last quick text message to Reno had been a worried plea to find out what was up with their lover.

Reno had downloaded the cadets' schedule to his laptop and planned a sneak attack. From previous conversations Reno knew that Cloud would probably be alone in the barracks while the rest of his troop flooded into the game room or commons area to relax a bit before curfew. As dusk approached Reno slid through the shadows like he was a part of them until he made it to the door. Sure enough, he saw the last stragglers of the unit leaving with a few cajoling remarks to Cloud to suck it up and leave the room for a while.

Suck it up? What the hell did that mean? Cloud was no social butterfly, but the guys made it sound like he was embarrassed or afraid of something. Ah well, he'd find out soon enough.

Reno opened the door, careful to avoid opening to the point where it always squeaked, and slipped inside the room. His elusive quarry was laying on a lower bunk, facing away from the door with his arm tucked under the pillow. Reno reached out and clasped his shoulder. He certainly was expecting the startled yelp, but not even he could have anticipated the glass shattering octave it aspired to. His snicker died in his throat when he got a good look at Cloud's shadowed face. Reno immediately left the bunk to switch on the bright overhead lights and stormed back to hover over Cloud with his lover caged by his arms.

"The hell happened to your face?" Reno yelled.

Cloud tried to turn his face into the pillow, but Reno was having none of it. He gently caught Cloud's chin and examined the dark purple discoloration of the swollen flesh. It looked like Cloud had met a concrete wall face first. Reno traced the injury with soft fingertips and had to clamp down on his rage when Cloud winced from his touch.

"What happened?" Reno asked more quietly.

"I...my concentration slipped...during sparring drills. We were using those heavy bokken and, well, my sparring partner got through my guard. I got it square on the cheek," Cloud explained hesitantly, his voice reedy with embarrassment. "It's better. My eye's open and not blurry anymore," he finished.

"Why," Reno asked in a furiously chill tone, "didn't your C.O. send you to the infirmary to be healed?"

Cloud plucked nervously at his blanket. "He said it would help remind me to stay focused, and..." Cloud's face flushed a deep red. It made the injury look even more hideous. "maybe I'd quit daydreaming about my boyfriend during drills."

Reno stood abruptly. Before he could take a step in any direction a strong hand grabbed his wrist in a desperate grip.

"Please! Please, don't tell Zack! It's bad enough you saw, but Zack...he might agree, and he might decide to break things off. I'll get better. Really I will. It won't happen again, so there's no reason for Zack to know," Cloud babbled in a panic.

Stunned, Reno could only stare at his lover's earnest face. He didn't understand at all. He knew that Cloud suffered from a painfully low self image, but this trembling fear over what was essentially just an accident was going to extremes. He ran his fingers through tousled blond spikes as he tried to guess his lover's thoughts.

"Why would you think that of Zack? It was an accident. He'll be upset that you were hurt, and his feelings might be hurt that you felt that you needed to hide it, but he's not going to toss you aside because of it. Neither of us would."

Cloud blushed more furiously. "Because I was kind of daydreaming. I was thinking about...the other night," he said in a whisper and ducked his head.

He's just too adorable. If he only knew what a weapon that cuteness is against me and Zack. Reno couldn't help the pleased and amused chuckle.

"Zack's just about perfect as a SOLDIER First Class, and I can't...I won't...I'll never be as good as that. I don't want to be an embarrassment," Cloud said miserably. He cringed just admitting that and wilted further when Reno laughed until the Turk was clutching his sides and leaning against the bunk to stay upright. "It's not funny."

"S' not you," Reno gasped between snickers. "Didn't Zack ever tell you about his earlier days in SOLDIER? He got his cocky self into trouble countless times. He even once got shot in the ass with a poison stinger because he turned his back too soon on a monster that wasn't quite dead." Reno cupped Cloud's chin and rubbed his thumb over the younger man's bottom lip affectionately. "Nobody's perfect, and we don't expect you to be."

"What about you?" Cloud asked, his downcast expression brightening.

"Nope." Reno tapped the end of Cloud's nose. "A good Turk doesn't give away blackmail fodder like that. You'll just have to be satisfied by knowing that we all get handed our ass on occasion."

Cloud crossed his arms and pushed out his bottom lip in a sulk, looking every bit how young he really was. Reno kissed that pouty lip with an enthusiasm that still took Cloud by surprise. They separated with a soft sigh on Cloud's part.

"Zack will be back in a few days. You better talk to him then and explain why you aren't very pretty at the moment. Trust me. He'll tease you like mad about it, but that's it."

Cloud rested against Reno's lean body and felt some of the tension of the last few days slowly leave. In the end he felt rather foolish for doubting his lovers.

"Hey," Reno offered. "Wipe the floor with your opponent next time, and we'll give you another night to top the last one."

Cloud blinked. "You're bribing me with sex to improve my sparring?"

"Yeah." Reno's grin was wicked and full of sensual promise. "Why daydream when you can always have the real thing?"


( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 9th, 2008 04:31 pm (UTC)
need a renocloud icon D:
Cloud is too precious! Even if he shouldn't have been daydreaming, haha XD And I love the way you write banter/dialog. The characterizations are awesome <333 Reno especially.
Feb. 10th, 2008 12:01 am (UTC)
Re: need a renocloud icon D:
Thanks! I'm having a lot of fun writing them.
Feb. 9th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)
Awwww!!! Wonderful fluff and fuzziness. :)
Feb. 10th, 2008 12:02 am (UTC)
Fluffy as a chocobo's butt. (Eh, sorry Cloud) Poor kid, everyone wants to pet him.
Feb. 9th, 2008 05:22 pm (UTC)
Awwwww. Dying of the cute. ♥
Feb. 10th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC)
Thanks bunches!
Feb. 9th, 2008 05:52 pm (UTC)
Cloud with cute as a weapon. Too hilarious. Good thing he has no idea he has it or how to use it or his lovers would be in deep shit.
Feb. 10th, 2008 12:04 am (UTC)
Hmmm, methinks the lady has spawned another plotbunny for me. Zack and Reno better be on guard.
Feb. 10th, 2008 01:29 am (UTC)
Awwwness! Cloud is just so...cute. And Cloudlike. And I just love Reno in these. *hearts*
Feb. 10th, 2008 02:30 am (UTC)
Thank you. One of these days Cloud will finally get over his starry eyed awe over having the affections of two beautiful and realize he is not only worthy but a match for them.
Feb. 10th, 2008 02:23 am (UTC)
Cloud blinked. "You're bribing me with sex to improve my sparring?"

Oh, Reno would so do that, wouldn't he?

Reading this *while* doing yoga in front of the computer in good Edward Wong Hau Pepelu Tivrusky IV style turned out to be quite fun. Your fics amuse me.
Feb. 10th, 2008 02:27 am (UTC)
:snicker: Reno's a Turk. He has no problem doing whatever it takes to get the job done. Of course, that doesn't mean he's not going to enjoy himself thoroughly while doing it.

Feb. 10th, 2008 02:35 am (UTC)
*typing upside down*

That's exactly how I see Reno. As someone that would enjoy most aspects of life, and don't deny pleasure, even if it's not inside the definitions of normal.
Feb. 10th, 2008 04:16 pm (UTC)
rofl. This is so much win. the banter is perfect. tee hee. Sex bribes and daydreaming. Im gonna be giggling all day.
Feb. 15th, 2008 02:55 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Yeah, Reno could bribe me with sex any day.
Aug. 13th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
Only Reno would use sex as incentive
Aug. 14th, 2008 12:45 am (UTC)
Well, since it *is* Reno, that's one hell of an incentive. ~_^.
Dec. 21st, 2008 05:09 am (UTC)
XD oh reno that would give me incentive to win though that's for sure... I can almost see it cloud nearly killing somebody in the sparring.... now I wonder how muc hsex that would get the cute little chocofluff
Dec. 21st, 2008 09:25 pm (UTC)
Well, I imagine Cloud's sparring skill improved tremendously. ~_^.
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )

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