Categories > Games > Final Fantasy 7 > This Shame All Mine

These Unfamiliar Familiars

by KevehKins 0 reviews

Failed electrocutions, witticisms, personal revelations and realisations. A man can learn a lot about himself conducting an interrogation. Warnings: Swearing and mild violence. Arguably cracky.

Category: Final Fantasy 7 - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Humor - Characters: Reno,Rude - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2015-11-25 - 2364 words - Complete

Reno glanced over his shoulder at his partner, barely visible in the shadows cast by the single light bulb dangling above the table. Rude did not look at him, eyes fixed on the figure behind Reno. The target was sat in the chair opposite him, with his torso slumped flat across the dented metal table. Reno observed the angry lump on the back of the man's skull. Covered in hair as it was, its overall appearance struck him as akin to a furry, grey hill in the middle of a grassy field. A grey grassy field, but a grassy field nevertheless. He shifted his legs up, pressing the balls of his feet against the table-edge and pushing against it, swinging lightly in his chair. He cast his gaze upwards. The roof was coated in numerous cobwebs, all dangling from the chain link fencing fixed under the thin wooden boards. He picked one out, and blew upwards with a soft breath, watching it sway to and fro. His gaze shifted to look around the dingy room. It was little more than a concrete block with a table in it, and a lot of bloodstains, he noted, glancing over at the dirty brown markings on the wall to his left. It smelled funky too, the dustiness of a shed made ever more pungent by the extreme muggy heat that enveloped it from outside.

"Safe house my pale ass." He muttered as he dropped his feet from the table and slumped forward, resting his chin on his crossed arms. He received no response from Rude, and so spoke again.

"Wake the fuck up already." He said, tightening his mouth into the glum grimace of boredom.

"I've been awake for ages."

Reno jumped, a small one, but enough for the supposedly sleeping man in front of him to feel the movement of the table. The man chuckled, lifting his head off the metal surface and grinned at him.

"Gave you a bit of a fright, did I?" He asked. Reno only frowned, pushing himself off the table he mimicked the man's movement, sitting back in his chair as though they were conversing in a coffee shop. He swung one arm over the back of the chair; the other remained on the table, finger tapping the metal in a slow rhythm. He stared at the man, expression blank. His captive continued grinning back at him, raising his brow as if to ask 'Well?'

"How long have you been awake?"

"Long enough to know you have a pale ass." The man replied.

"Funny." Reno replied. He looked over his shoulder at Rude, who now stood upright, arms still crossed. The bald man nodded and stepped towards the table, coming to a stop next to Reno. Their captive gave him a pleasant smile and a nod, he received no response.

"I suppose you're wondering why you're here?" Reno began. The man shrugged.

"Not really."

Reno quirked an eyebrow, surprised.

"Blue suits, dark room, lump on the back of my head, Turk work if ever I've seen it." He explained. "Oh yeah, I know who you are son, and if you thought about it you'd have known that I'd know, don't look so fuckin' surprised." He said, his tone reminiscent of a teacher reprimanding a cheeky student. He raised his cuffed hands to his neck, and touched his fingers to the thick collar adorning it.

"I am wondering what this is." He said.

"All in good time." Reno replied, still tapping his finger against the table. "First, we have to ask you a few questions."

"Questions." The man repeated with a nod. Reno ignored it.

"Questions. Nothing too major, just the routine stuff, protocol-"

"Protocol." The man repeated again. A small frown crept onto Reno's face, but he gave the interruption no further acknowledgement.

"Name?" He asked.

"Damien." The man replied, lips curved into a small smile.

"Damien?" Reno said, unable to mask the condescension in his tone.

"Damien." The man reaffirmed.

A mirthless laugh escaped the redhead. He leaned forward in his chair, folding his arms on the tabletop and with a pleasant smile to match the expression of his captive, spoke again.

"I don't think your name is Damien."

"You don't think, full stop."

Reno's face twisted into a scowl. He glared at the man across the table, beside him Rude let out a short sigh. 'Damien' simply continued to smile, never breaking eye contact with him.

"The hell does that mean?"

"I'd ask what you think it means but there'd be no point in that now, would there?" The man replied with a chuckle. Reno continued to scowl at him. 'Damien' raised his hands and placed them on the table, he set about twiddling his thumbs, gaze now hopping from Reno to his partner and back again, dropping the smile from his face with a theatrical expression of concern.

"Ah now, don't look so upset."

"Answer my damn question." Reno snarled.

"Think about it." 'Damien' retorted, twisting his cuffed hands into a shrugging gesture. Reno made to rise from his seat, teeth bared in an angered grimace. 'Damien' sat back in his chair, hands raised to his chest, palms outward.

"Would you sit down? I'm only messing with ya, geez!"

Reno turned his head, shifting his glare toward his silent partner. Rude gave him a sideways glance and a small, almost imperceptible shake of his head. Reno sighed, closing his eyes and lowering his head. The unpleasant prickling in his stomach returned. He ignored it and lowered himself back into his seat. The man opposite him leaned forward, tilting his arms upwards, elbows resting on the table, he brought his hands level with his chin and again twisted them into that shrugging gesture.

"Seriously though, think about it. How would I not know you were Turks? With my family? With their line of work? With who they work for and who he works for? And all of a sudden I end up in a concrete block, with cuffed hands and a lump on the back of my head and men in suits asking me questions they already know the answers to?" He finished. Reno lowered his gaze to the table, picking out a tiny imperfection on the metal surface; he pressed his finger onto it, sliding the raised fragment between nail and flesh, savouring the simultaneous satisfaction and frustration of the sensation the little piece brought to his finger coupled with his inability to break it away from the tabletop. He looked his captive in the eye again.

"So you know about our work with the Don?"

'Damien' sighed and rolled his eyes. "Yes. I know about your work with the Don. Anyone who's ever lived in the slums and has a damn clue knows who the Don works with and for, never mind me and my connections to him."

Reno's eyes widened, surprised. Another frustrated sigh escaped his captive.

"What? You think the people living in the slums don't know who to stay away from? Who not to mess with? Are we supposed to be stupid or something?" He snapped.

"I…I thought…" Reno stammered.

"Thought my ass! Plate dwellers, all the fucking same." The captive muttered, closing his eyes and pressing his thumbs against them. He lowered them and opened his eyes. "That get-up you were wearing, before ya clubbed me over the head, wouldn't take a genius to figure out you weren't from round the slums wearing those rags."

'Damien' furrowed his brow, shifting in his seat from left to right, craning his neck and looking him up and down.

"Mind, you still look like shit now." He murmured, eyeing him up all the while, like a collector inspecting some artefact. Reno bolted forward in his seat, his captive slumped back into his own with a cackle, just avoiding a head on collision with his captor's forehead.

"The hell does everyone keep bringing that up?" He spat, angered. Behind him, Rude took a step forward.

"Reno…" He began, only to be interrupted by the redhead raising a hand in dismissal.

"Because you dressed like shit", came the captive's response. Reno tightened his lip and took a long, steadying breath.

"Yeah…I got that…I meant–"

"I know what you meant." The grey haired man interrupted, "But walking around dressed like you were on a Saturday night? In Wall Market? And looking like as much of an outsider as you do? You were asking for some grief."

Reno's expression morphed into one of utter puzzlement. Another sigh from 'Damien', his head lowered.

"Right." He began, "What do people normally do on a Saturday evening? After a long week of working their asses off trying to scrape a living?"

Reno said nothing, knowing the man would continue on and because, reluctant as he was to admit it, he didn't want to leave himself open to another of his captive's oh so delicate remarks.

"They relax, right? And that means going out for a night on the town, because let's be frank, there's fuck all else to do down here and booze is cheap. And what do people do when they go out? You of all people should know this, Plate Dweller."

Reno sat back in his chair, mouth agape as realisation swept through him, almost drowning out that annoying prickling sensation in his gut. Almost.

"They dress up." He muttered, staring through the man opposite him, eyes wide. "They dress better."

The grey haired man pointed both fingers at him. "Bingo."

"But…it's the slums…" The redhead muttered, voice almost pleading, searching for some sort of respite to dull the impact of his mistake. His captive frowned.


"So…they can't afford…" He trailed off as the man opposite him dropped his head to the table, forehead pressed to dented steel. A moment of silence passed, until at last the man uttered a muffled complaint.

"Give me fuckin' strength." He raised his head again, locking eyes with the sheepish Turk. "Didn't you notice how clean everyone was?"

"…I noticed a lot of colours."

The man laughed, a single amused huff followed by a knowing smirk.

"Didn't say they dressed fashionably, now did I? But dress well, dress well they do. They don't have everything, but the people of the Slums have their own culture, their own norms. They'll scrape together an outfit out of ten different things, might be the ugliest Frankenstein monster of an outfit you'll ever see, but they'll keep it clean and it makes them feel damn good. They have self-respect…something you Plate dwellers don't seem to get." He finished, not even trying to mask the disdain in his voice.

A pronounced, uncomfortable silence filled the ramshackle room. Reno stared down at the table, finger returning to pick at that little lump on the metal, digesting the barrage of information and insults. Their captive sat back in his chair, satisfied in making his point. At last the quiet broke with a single cough from the man standing to his left.

"Can we get back to what we're doing here?" Rude asked, though Reno knew the tone well enough to take it as a direction, not a question. Their captive either did not share this understanding of Rude's tone, or chose to ignore it. He leaned forward, adopting an exaggerated apologetic expression and responded, his voice growing louder with each expletive.

"Oh I'm sorry Lurch. How rude of me to take up your precious time, making you sit through all that, messing up your schedule. I forgot myself, y'know, after being clubbed over the fucking head, twice, and dragged from my fucking room to a fucking shack to talk to you two fucking morons." He finished, throwing himself back in his seat once again. "Fuck!"

"Just co-operate with us and we can get this over with sooner." Rude replied, calm and collected.

The man across from him rolled his eyes.

"Fine. Fine. Whaddya want?"

Reno glanced over at Rude and received another little nod from his partner. He turned back to face his target.

"What'd you say your name was again?" He asked.


"Eugene?" Reno replied, feigning a surprised tone.

"Eugene." The man nodded.

"I thought you said your name was Damien?"

The man's head hit the table again.

"So we're back to this are we? You asking me questions you already know the answer to?"

Reno pressed his finger harder into the little lump on the tabletop, deliberating over his next move.

"If you're gonna lie, at least be consistent." He said. 'Eugene' raised his head from the table before responding. He looked tired, dark lines beginning to form under his eyes, eyelids drooping just a little bit.

"I'm not in the business of consistency."

A single red brow crawled upwards.

"You're a storyteller." Reno replied.

"Sometimes yeah." The man affirmed. "So?"

"So your stories would need to be consistent, right?"

The man shook his head. "Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative." He spoke like a student reciting a long ago learned line of poetry, the one line he could still recall with perfect clarity.

Reno said nothing, only staring at his captive.

"Well it's making you wonder, isn't it? Me being inconsistent?"

The redhead laughed, a genuine one this time, tinged with mirth, unable to help himself.

"You're a real character."

"Well I have to be." He replied.

"Just tell us your name, please." Rude interrupted before Reno could respond. The man acquiesced at last.

"Knotch, my name is Knotch. I'm forty years old, prematurely grey hair, no fixed address. Family, two half brothers, Scotch and Kotch, both of whom work for the lovely Don, mother deceased, never knew my father." He summarised, shooting Rude an 'Is that enough for you?' look. Reno chuckled.

"Knotch, Scotch and Kotch." He recited. "Interesting names."

"My mother was an interesting woman." Came Knotch's immediate reply. Reno opened his mouth to respond, prompting another interrupting cough from Rude. He closed it again as his partner stepped closer to the table and reached into his jacket's inner pocket, pulling out a large brown envelope.

"We need you to do a job for us."
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