To Heal A Shattered Heart Chapter 12

By EagleHeart

Lyria froze as Dr. Lewis’s voice resounded throughout the room. "Thank you! Now, as a child my mother taught me that one should never go anywhere without a gift for the host or hostess of a party. Therefore, I wish to present to you, Mr. Palmer, a small token of my esteem for this company and contempt for those who stand against ShinRa. As we all know, renegade Turks are punished severely for their lack of fidelity to their mother company. What would one do with a renegade Turk, turned Avalanche member?" there was a murmur of dissent from the audience and Dr. Lewis smiled as he continued. "Here is my gift…" Dr. Lewis was cut off as Vincent pulled Lyria through the door.

"Was he talking about you?" Lyria asked fearfully as Vincent loaded a clip of ammo into his gun.

"Yes. We have to go."


"Now. We’re both in over our heads."

"What about you? We can’t just leave without…"

"We have no choice. Come on, we’re wasting time."

Lyria followed as Vincent headed quickly down the staircase, stopping as he did to look around the corner. With a sigh he turned to face her. "You have to get out of here."

"What?" Lyria was thoroughly confused.

"Go. There’s an elevator just down that hallway." Vincent gestured down a long hallway of offices with his handgun.

"You can’t stay here!" Lyria exclaimed in a whisper.

"They aren’t after you. Or at least most of them aren’t, if it’s a choice between you or me, Lewis will take me."

"You could be killed!"

"So could you. Get out of here; it’s dangerous for you to be around me. If it’ll help him track me down, he’ll make me change."

In spite of herself, Lyria started to head down the hallway he indicated. "Please…don’t get hurt…"

"Don’t worry, just go."

Lyria turned and ran down the hallway, tears in her eyes. She reached the elevator and turned to look for Vincent, but he had vanished. Almost in a daze she pressed the button and the doors opened, revealing Elena.

"Lyria! Hey, are you all right?" Elena asked, seeing the tears streaming down her friend’s cheeks.

"Oh Elena…no, no I’m not…" Lyria sank down on the floor and Elena crouched down beside her.

"What is it? Is it about that guy who was pretending to be your husband? Don’t worry, Lyria, we’ll catch him. He had absolutely no right to use you like that…"

"No! No, Elena it’s not that…don’t you understand?" Lyria pleaded. "I…I love him, Elena. Now…all of a sudden everyone wants to hunt him down and kill him…"

"But…he’s a renegade," Elena said the last word with a trace of revulsion. "He joined Avalanche and…"

"And helped stop Meteor and kill Sephiroth. Elena, please…haven’t you ever loved anyone and lost them?"

Elena fell silent, trying to stop the painful memories Lyria’s words resurrected.


"Hello, Reno?" Elena’s voice crackled as a wave of static interrupted her phone call.

"Hey, Elena. What’s up?" Reno asked casually, waving away the confused look Rude gave him over his glass of brandy.

"Umm…is Tseng with you?"

"Are you nuts? We’re on our break, we’re drinking, and we’re trying to pick up women. Does that sound like the sort of thing Tseng would be joining us in?"

"Oh…do you know where he is?"

"I thought he’d be with you."

"He’s supposed to be…he said we could go out for dinner after he was done at the Temple of the Ancients…"

"Bet that pleased you."

"Shut up Reno, this is serious. I’ve called him six times and he’s not answering his cell phone, or his office phone, or his home phone."

"Maybe he has caller ID. That would explain it."

"Reno this is serious! I’m worried."

"Elena you worry too much."

"C’mon, can we please just go to the Temple and check on him?"

"Elena, we’re on our break…"

"Please Reno? I promise I’ll never bug you ever, ever, ever again…"

"Don’t make promises you can’t keep."

"Then you’ll come?"

"Yeah, yeah. Where are you? We’ll be along in a bit with the chopper."

"I’m at my apartment."

"We’ll be on the roof in about fifteen minutes. Be ready, ok?"

"All right, thanks Reno."

"He’s going to resent it if we show up and he doesn’t need us. Tseng is perfectly capable of taking care of himself."

"I know. I’ll take full responsibility."

"You bet you will." Reno hung up the phone. "Come on, Rude, we have to hurry."

"Why? You didn’t make it sound like that big a deal."

"I didn’t want Elena freaking out. I’ve got a really bad feeling about this one…"

"You think he’s in trouble?"

"He wasn’t answering his cell phone, he didn’t meet Elena for dinner, and he hasn’t reported to headquarters on his mission. Does that sound like the dedicated, responsible Turk we know and love?"

"No…I guess not…let’s go then." Rude quickly downed the last of his drink and stood up. Reno dumped a handful of bills on the counter and wove his way through the crowd in the ShinRa lounge to the elevators. He punched the button for the top floor and anxiously drummed his fingers against the elevator door. Rude came up behind him and pointed to the digital panel that indicated the elevator was only at the fifth floor.

"Oh damn it…" Reno muttered. "Come on Rude, we’ll take the stairs." Reno pushed back through the people to the stairwell and ran up the first flight of stairs with Rude close behind. When they reached the top floor where the helicopter was waiting Reno was breathing heavily while Rude was barely winded.

"Getting soft?" Rude asked as Reno climbed into the helicopter.

"Lay off, I’ve been drinking and I don’t spend half my breaks in the training room, beating the crap out of punching bags."

"Maybe you should start," Rude suggested mildly.

"Go to hell."


Elena waved to the helicopter pilot from the roof of her apartment building on Midgar’s upper plate. The late evening darkness was deeper than the perpetual gloom that normally covered Midgar due to the smoke and smog that blocked the sky. There was an answering wave and the chopper swerved around towards the top of the high-rise. The helicopter hovered above the roof and suddenly a rope ladder dropped down. Elena grabbed one of the rungs and climbed up even as the helicopter began to rise again. She reached the top easily and Rude offered her a hand up.

"Thanks. Couldn’t you have landed?" Elena asked, sitting down beside Reno.

"I thought you would have appreciated that we didn’t, what with the rush to get to the Temple and all."

"Oh. So are you worried too?"

"Nah. I just want to get this over with and get back to happy hour," Reno answered, maintaining a calm attitude.

"You’re selfish."

"Am not! If I were selfish, I wouldn’t have come at all."

"Fine…do you think Tseng’s ok?"

"Yeah, probably."

"He wasn’t answering his phone…"

"Maybe there are enemies in the temple and he’s got it turned off because he’s trying to avoid battles," Reno said, casually buffing his nails on the front of his jacket. He was thankful that Elena was such an airhead or she might have come to the logical conclusion that Tseng could very easily have switched his cell phone to vibration mode.

"We’re almost there, sirs…and ma’am," the pilot said, glancing back over his shoulder.

"Thanks, Dale. After you let us down, you can just circle for a bit, if we aren’t out in an hour, send for back up," Reno instructed, pulling out an extendable metal rod with several buttons on the end.

"Yes, sir." The pilot brought the helicopter down in front of the temple and the Turks jumped out. Rude had pulled on a pair of black gloves with steel knuckles and Elena had a small handgun.

"All right, let’s go, and don’t let your guard down," Reno said, heading across the rickety looking bridge to the temple. Elena and Rude followed, both wary and ready for a fight. Reno looked distastefully at the steep flight of stairs at the other side of the bridge and sighed. Elena smiled and raced up the stairs ahead of Reno, with Rude close behind.

"Hurry up, Reno!" Elena called jokingly as she neared the top of the stairs.

"Shut…up…Elena," Reno panted, stopping to rest near the middle of the staircase.

"Why don’t you come up here and make me?"

"Because they’re too damn many stairs!" Rude grinned and turned to wait for Reno as Elena continued on.

"Oh, all right." Elena reached the top of the temple and decided not to wait for Rude and Reno to catch up. She carefully loaded her gun and held her finger to the trigger, unsure what to anticipate when she entered the temple. For a moment she deliberated waiting for Reno and Rude, but instead half stepped into the light from the doorway, holding her pistol in front of her. Her eyes swept the room from right to left before coming to rest on the body slumped against a pillar in the dark corner of the small room. Elena’s hand shook and the gun fell from her grasp as she ran forward.

"Oh no…" she whispered, stopping a few feet in front of the pillar. "Rude! Reno!" she yelled over her shoulder, kneeling down and shaking Tseng’s shoulder. "Come on…wake up…please…don’t be…"

"Elena? What’s wrong?" Rude asked, coming through the doorway. "Oh god…is he…"

"No…no, he can’t be…Tseng, wake up…please…" Tears were streaming freely down Elena’s cheeks as she kept up her fruitless attempt to wake her colleague.

"What is it?" Reno said, gasping for air as he got to the top of the stairs. "Oh no…"

"Reno, do something!" Elena ordered, gently slipping an arm around Tseng’s shoulders and holding him tightly.

Reno crouched down beside her and touched the back of his friend’s hand. "Forget it Elena, we’re too late," Reno sighed, shuddering at the feeling of Tseng’s lifelessly cold body.

"No…no, please Reno, you have to do something…"

"I can’t do anything!"

"Rude? Rude, help me…" Elena pleaded.

"He can’t do anything either. Nobody can do anything. He’s dead, Elena." Reno stood up and looking sadly at his friend.

"Who? Who would have done this?"

"Isn’t it obvious? Look at the goddamn hole in the middle of him. Who do we know with a sword big enough to run right through a guy and kill him like that?"

"Cloud…" Elena gasped. "How could he?"

"Keep in mind we’ve been running around for the past while trying to get rid of him…" Rude said.

"We’ll worry about this later, we have to get back to headquarters…god…I don’t know what to do…" Reno said, anxiously running his fingers through his hair.

"Elena, run outside and signal the helicopter…" Rude ordered Elena who had started weeping hysterically.

"Oh great…Elena! Snap out of it! Get the helicopter!" Reno shouted. Elena deliberately ignored him and held the inert form in her arms tighter.

"Rude would you…" Reno sighed.

"Yeah, hang on." Rude ran out the door, pausing for a few seconds to pick Elena’s gun off the floor. As Reno turned to lay a comforting hand on Elena’s shoulder there were three shots fired in succession and the whir of the helicopter blades got louder. Rude re-entered the temple and stood uneasily by the doorway.

"Rude, gimme a hand." Reno gently pulled Elena away from Tseng’s body and she sat down on the floor and buried her face in her hands.

"With what?"

"We can’t just leave him here. We’re taking him out to the chopper."

"Oh, all right…"

"Come on Elena, it’s going to be a hard ride back."

Chapter 13

EagleHeart's Fanfiction