Step 25: Human
Step 25: Human
My luggage is packed, though it's not much, just some clothes to wear while I'm away. I put the suitcase in the chopper and take one last look at Edge from the roof of the new Shinra Headquarters. Tseng will be coming with me to train. I look at the Turks quietly, Elena is trying to look supportive, Rude nods as if to reassure me, Reno is late, but even Rufus is here. The president's stress seems to have gone away, his expression much more serene now; somehow, he's not angry at me anymore. I'm guessing the business with the secretary went well.
"I'm here!" Reno always makes his arrival known, unless it's a secret mission, but if it's not, he assumes the world wants to know when he gets there. "Oh good, I didn't miss you two leaving. Blaze wants to say goodbye," Reno holds up the little red chicobo, its blue eyes focused curiously on the helicopter. "Seph, you're he's godfather now, because you named him."
I stare at the tiny chicobo for a long moment, "I named him..." Reno called him Blaze, but I wasn't saying those things to suggest names. I suppose the name matches the chicobo's color.
"You really need to get your work done, don't play with your pet all day," despite saying this, Tseng gently pets the little chicobo. He kisses Elena then goes in the helicopter; everyone knows they're together so there's no need to hide it.
Feeling completely silly I raise my hand and very gently pet the little bird's head. "You don't have chicobo phobia, do you?" Reno curiously asks; the question is completely serious.
"Of course not," I just don't want to hurt the little guy. I suppose this is what it's like for something to be cute, no one can bear to hurt it and everyone adores it instantly. "Goodbye..."
"See ya later Seph, I'll send pictures if anything cool happens," which means that Reno will try to play pranks while I'm gone, though he might not get too far since everyone expects it from him.
"Have a nice trip!" Elena calls out as if we're heading out on vacation. Rude watches silent and unreadable.
Rufus smiles slightly, I don't know if the president is happy to be rid of me or convinced that this training will be a success and expecting the good news soon. It's probably the second because for a fleeting moment I see Lazard reflected in Rufus, his expression confident, knowing the mission will be accomplished.
xoxox xox xoxox
As the helicopter flies I find myself staring at the ruins of old Midgar as they become more distant. "You don't have to be so gloomy," Tseng breaks the silence, "this training isn't so hard and we can take breaks if need be, there's no time limit."
"It's more complicated than that," I admit. "I don't know who I am; I thought I was okay with that but apparently not. It was as if something was controlling me through my doubts."
"You're Sephiroth of the Turks, you're a human being with Jenova cells and mako, but a human being none the less," Tseng assures.
"Can you be sure?" I further inquired; I wish I could simply accept his words.
"Yes, we have been investigating, we know your past, your origin, you're not a monster, though you were modified while still in your mother's womb, you are still human, she was human," Tseng reveals.
I pale, my eyes losing their focus on the miniature ruins lost in the distant horizon. I stare at the distance, at nothing, then I close my eyes and time passes, I don't know how much time. "My mother," I whisper after a while, "was not called Jenova."
"That was not her name," Tseng admits. "Your past was unclear, but I understand it now, all the pieces. It's not easy though, we wanted to tell you later, you have the right to know, but you shouldn't stress about it now."
"I'm human," I repeat it as if to convince myself, "mother was not called Jenova; that was a lie, I was born of a human, I was experimented on, but I was originally a human..."
"You still are," Tseng emphasizes.
I want to know more, I want to hear the whole story, to know the truth, "tell me more."
"Sephiroth!" I stare at Tseng; my full attention on him, his voice went from relaxed to firm; then took on a friendly reassuring tone. "You will know, you won't be lied to, but I can't tell you now, I won't give you a false excuse. The truth is the situation was difficult and there's nothing that can be done about that past now."
I take in Tseng's words. I once went very far to get revenge in the name of the one I thought was my mother. For Jenova I wanted to take over the planet and use it as a vessel to travel the cosmos after crashing a meteor into it. A crazy plan indeed, a plan of vengeance, for my mother, for my rights, for what I thought was stolen from me. Perhaps Shinra did take something away from me, the old Shinra that is. Maybe I would seek revenge again, in my real mother's name this time, but that won't lead anywhere, just to more destruction, more mistakes, more things to make up for, more regrets.
"I understand," I may long to know, yet I might not be ready to know. "I want to hear the story one day, but for now, if you can be certain that I'm human and that who ever my mother was, she was also human; that's enough."
"I assure you," Tseng's relaxed tone returned, he seems both pleased and relieved to have been able to reason with me.
"What of my father? He was human too, right?"
My question brings an unconscious frown to Tseng's face and his features harden, "yes." He seems uncomfortable with the subject, perhaps bitter. "He was a human too," he almost sounds as if he has his doubts.
"Are you sure?" I further inquire.
"I'm certain that both your parents were of the humans species, their biology was originally no different from that of a normal human," Tseng seems very uncomfortable with the subject now; he wants to end this conversation, that much is clear.
I want to ask more questions but I don't want to complicate things, just knowing I'm not a monster is enough, "is a human who has been modified truly still human?"
"Biology isn't important, it is rational thought that counts, hold on to that," Tseng replied.
Rational thought, I wonder if I can hold on to it, "I'll try." I see Cosmo Canyon in the horizon, or at least I think that's it, "Cosmo Canyon?"
Tseng seems pleased with the change in subject, "yes, we'll be there for a while, to relax, meditate and get away from everything."
"How did we get here so fast?"
"We've been flying all day, we even stopped to refuel; the sun is setting now, see? You fell asleep, remember?" Tseng spoke slowly, as if not to startle me with the information that I should have been able to gather on my own.
When I felt time pass, I didn't realize it was this much, when I closed my eyes, I didn't notice that I fell asleep. When I woke up, without realizing I was waking up, I asked about my mother as if only seconds have passed, continuing the same conversation from before. "Right," I yawn, just for show, as if to convince Tseng I'm disoriented because I'm drowsy not insane. I don't think it worked, "that was a good nap," I'm such a bad liar. I've never really been drowsy unless it's chemically induced, as for insane...
To be Continued
Disclaimer, I don't own Final Fantasy VII. Credits go to Cherri, who role plays Sephiroth in the Shinra Database RPG. The scene in the beginning with Blaze was loosely based on the RP, which is also where the name Blaze is from. For those wondering about the yakuza plot, don't worry, I haven't forgotten about it, it's a plot point that will continue developing later, I just don't want to throw out the whole plot all at once. There should be something to keep Sephy, and you, guessing.