|invaderhime (invaderhime) wrote in het_challenge,|
@ 2008-05-17 00:23:00
|Entry tags:||a: invaderhime, f: final fantasy 7, r: reversathon, recipient: ponderosa121|
Title: Simple Measures
Fandom: Final Fantasy VII
Rating: Work Safe!
Request: Final Fantasy 7 - Rufus/Elena - Elena helping look after Rufus while he has geostigma. I really like seeing them end up together in a way that isn't an abuse of power.
A/N: TA-DA! Fluffyness ahoy! A little tardy, but worth waiting for ^_^
No one knew where it came from.
It had started appearing without warning.
It was a cruel and merciless disease that no one was immune to. No one knew that better than Rufus Shinra at this very moment. He knew very little about Geostigma itself, but
It burned. It ate at his body and mind with a fiery cruelty. Attempting to explain what Geostigma felt like was a pointless endeavor. It burned and ate away at the flesh, simultaneously scorching and rotting it from the inside out.
No one knew how it was spread or if it was contagious.
All Rufus Shinra knew was that he had it and it burned.
He also knew the nurses had stopped coming.
No amount of money could bribe them closer to someone who should be dead already, but had somehow survived death once. It was highly unlikely he would do it again. It was him, too. He was certain if the nurses were to be martyrs, they would much rather die caring for ill children than the son of the man who almost killed the planet. No. He wasn’t getting any attention. He would probably die here alone.
He supposed there were worse things.
Across his mind flashed through a series of images he’d seen in Hojo’s “subject” records. Mako twisted bodies...
Yes, there were worse things...a lot of worse things.
That didn’t mean he liked it.
He hated the loneliness and isolation.
It wasn’t dying that he hated either. Everything died. That’s what life was.
It was the loneliness of it.
The thought that no one would be sad that he left. He wouldn’t be missed. They’d all be glad he was gone.
That was what he hated most of all.
Rufus could swear he could feel the Geostigma festering and making his system fail.
It was a humiliating and slow process and now he’d have to face it alone.
He heard the door open and didn’t bother looking at who it was. It didn’t matter. They would just leave him there alone. They were probably just here to satisfy their own morbid curiosity before leaving him to his fate.
Light suddenly fell across his face and he felt warm sunlight against his cheeks. Rufus slowly eased open his unobscured eye.
There was Elena, opening the blinds, but adjusting them so that the sunlight didn’t shine in his eyes. She started when she noticed he saw her...more than that, was watching her intently. Rufus watch her got from quietly contemplative to tense to stoic in a matter of seconds. It made him smile slightly. He shut his eye and held still.
Elena stood stiffly at attention next to the window. Rufus heard her starched shirt shuffle as she shifted her weight nervously. He heard her shoes clack on the floor as she crossed the room.
She was leaving. He knew it, though he was thankful for the small gesture of kindness she had shown him. She had at least let him see natural light.
His thoughts were cut off as he felt a hand brush his hair out of his face and begin to undo the bandage on his face. Rufus gasped in surprised and opened his eye. He stared right into Elena’s wide eyes. She looked as startled as he did.
“I-I’m sorry, sir,” she stammered.
Rufus couldn’t believe she was apologizing.
“It is just that...your bandages need to be changed. I’m sorry I woke you,” she said, her eyes downcast. She didn’t want to stare at the revealed, unnatural blotch that covered almost half of his face that just managed to appear at the corner of the loosened bandage.
Rufus was now just plainly stupefied. No one knew what Geostigma was and no one knew how it was spread. The only person who gave a damn was Elena, who he knew he didn’t pay enough to take this kind of risk.
“It’s alright,” he managed to choke out, his throat dry and scratchy from lack of use.
Elena nodded and continued to remove the bandage from his face. He heard the hitch in her breath as she took off the layer of wrapping. She swallowed, but said nothing. She continued to re-bandage the Geostigma ravaged side of his face with hands that were delicate and gentle. They were meticulous and careful, she was treating him like a bomb that needed defusing. If the disease had disfigured him horribly, she gave no further sign of disgust. Elena finished with his face and moved onto his arms.
The more he felt the light brush of her skin against his, the more he appreciated her...and he could tell she appreciated him. He couldn’t believe he’d never noticed it before. There had always been so much to do. So many people to deal with...but never any that really mattered. From the way she was gently bandaging him...the whole reason she was here....it was so obvious now. He’d been so blind to her. Now, she was the only one who was willing to take care of him and suddenly, he found he would not have it any other way.
When she put a soft damp cloth on his fever ravaged forehead, he mustered enough strength to raise his hand to grasp hers.
“Yes, Sir?” she asked.
Elena blinked and looked away.
Rufus pulled her hand to his cheek.
“No...no you don’t understand. Thank you for everything...always,”
He hadn’t spoken this much in days. His throat was sore from the effort, but the feel of her soft skin against his made the discomfort worth it. He’d managed to somehow put everything he was feeling into those words.
Elena smiled. She leaned over Rufus felt her silky lips on his hot cheek. He didn’t think it was possible for him to feel any hotter, but apparently it was. He let go of her hand. Rufus ran his fingers through her short blonde hair. It felt cool against his fever ravaged fingers. Everything about her was soft and comforting. It was refreshing, new and hopeful.
Here in this hospital room in the Quarantined Sector, Rufus Shinra had finally found someone who wasn’t afraid of him and for once, he was not disappointed with that fact.