Track Fifteen – Reeve/Reno – I Knew I Loved You
Maybe it’s intuition. Maybe it was fate. And maybe it was just one big coincidence that it was on the particular day I was caught trying to pick someone’s pockets. And from a Turk no less. Who knows what I should really thank or blame? There are some things that I shouldn’t question. And falling in love with Reeve is one of them.
From the moment that I first saw him, it was the look in his eyes that captivated me. A shiver went up my spine before I turned, staring directly into the brightest blue eyes I had ever seen. They were mako reactor aquamarine. I couldn’t look away. Inside of his eyes, I saw everything I ever wanted and my future in an instant. I saw someone who could end up being my closest companion, my best friend.
I know it sounds crazy. I never really believed in love at first sight, not with all the shit that I had seen in my life. Not after being used and abused, struggling to survive on the streets. I didn’t think that I deserved anything so good as love. But now, I can’t help but believe. I knew I loved him before I met him.
It was expected of me to marry someone influential and wealthy, to have two kids, one boy and one girl. The elder boy was to inherit it all. There wouldn’t be anything as lowly as coincidence or chance in my life. But deep in my heart that wasn’t what I wanted. I wanted to breakaway. I wanted someone like him. I think I dreamed him into life. I know for certain that I loved him far before I met him.
I have been waiting all my life for something special and pure, something to make up for all the shit that I’ve had to wade through. I didn’t know what to expect. And I certainly didn’t anticipate falling in love. I think that I have been waiting my entire life for him. It’s sappy and a little cliché, but it’s true.
There is just no rhyme or reason to loving Reno. I can’t make sense of it, no matter how much I try. I couldn’t pinpoint any one thing that made me give him my heart. All I know is that there is a sense of completion when I am with him. That the part of me that has always been yearning for something found it in him. Every trial and tribulation we suffered was worth it.
Our eyes met across a crowded room. I stared and stared, unable to comprehend the feelings inside of me. I was irritated at having been caught, slightly worried about being thrown in jail. I was concerned for my gang that I left behind. But when I looked into amber eyes, I couldn’t look away. In them, I found all the missing pieces that I had been searching for. Everything that I lacked in my life was there.
I know that it might sound more than a little bit crazy, and even I have often questioned myself. I had never before looked twice at a man, and even now, I have only eyes for him. I tried to run away from what I was feeling, from the desires that haunted me, and the pang of longing within my heart. I thought if I ran far and fast enough, I could escape from the unknown, from the beyond that I was afraid to transverse. But I couldn’t, and in the end, I believe that I loved him before I met him.
Raised in the slums, orphaned before I was thirteen, forced to fend for myself, I often spent my days huddled with a bunch of other homeless kids, trying to stay warm. Trying to survive. Like all of them, I thought of better days. I dreamed of times when I wouldn’t have to steal for food and when I could finally sleep safely. I thought of all the things I was missing, love and happiness. I dreamed of the perfect life. And it sounds crazy, but I think I dreamed of him. Even back then, before I even met Reeve, I loved him.
Stifled by my family, desperate to break free of their bonds, to create a life of my own choosing, I often wished that I was someone else. I am a romantic at heart. I dreamed of the perfect woman, the perfect happiness, the perfect life. I dreamed of a small house in the countryside and a large backyard, of kids that would call me “dad” as opposed to “father”, and of laughter that echoed in open rooms filled with joy. I dreamed of freedom. And I was waiting for someone to break the chains.
I thought I would spend the rest of my life in the slums, that I would live and die as nothing more than a street rat, that I could never make anything better for myself. I certainly never expected to join the Turks, and I never thought I would meet someone as wonderful as him. A thousand angels must have been hard at work, trying to bring us together across the dance. In my eyes, he is the angel, and more often than not, I don’t consider myself worthy. But I’ll be damned if I let him go.
After that one brief glimpse, no one was ever enough anymore. I always saw aquamarine eyes and bright red hair, softer and prettier than most women’s. I felt hollow inside, lacking the luster that true life was. I would have given up the money and the fame for happiness. I would have gotten rid of it all if it meant I could be content. I know now for sure that I am complete since I have found him. I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am certain that I loved him before I met him… almost as if I dreamed him into life.
I never thought that I would be married. Or that I would have kids or a home. Or that I would be loved by such an extraordinary man. It’s almost like a page out of one of Eli’s storybooks. Things like that didn’t happen to people like me. But it did. I met Reeve, and from that one moment, there was no one else for me, if there ever had been to begin with. All those failed relationships, all those feelings of dissatisfaction, must have meant that I was in love with Reeve far before I even met him. And a part of me knew that. I was simply waiting for that fated time and place. I know it sounds crazy and maybe even a bit like romantic drivel, but I can’t help the way I feel.
– – –
“–if you could get the reports to me by four this afternoon I would be most…” A shiver raced up his spine, and Reeve’s words trailed off, though he wasn’t certain why. He felt eyes on him, and a silent voice seemed to whisper in indecipherable words. Rude, the Turk he had purposefully recruited for this task since the man had a knack for keeping quiet, waited patiently for him to finish.
But he had completely lost his train of thought.
Frowning slightly, Reeve shifted his weight, casting his gaze over the rather large lobby of the ShinRa building Level 6, looking for what had caused the strange sensation. There were many SOLDIERs milling about and even a few cadets. The secretaries behind the desk seemed intent on their tasks, and on the far end of the large crescent-shaped furniture, he recognized the rather short frame of the Turk second-in-command, Tseng.
And then suddenly, he was locked onto the brightest blue eyes he had ever seen, so intense that he saw hints of jade shifting beneath the surface. He recognized the glow instantly, many that lived in the slums near the mako reactors had picked up that radiance. A warmth effused through his body, and try as he might, he couldn’t tear his eyes away.
Scarlet hair sprung up messily from the boy’s head, he couldn’t have been anymore than sixteen, and he had a cocky stance, as if he was quite certain that no one could take him down. He was slender and lanky with a twin pair of scars or tattoos, Reeve couldn’t be sure which, accentuating his cheekbones. The boy dressed like a hoodlum, and he slumped with very little grace. And yet, he was the most beautiful man Reeve had other seen.
His cheeks burned with embarrassment for that unexpected thought, having never looked twice at a man in his life. Something in his stomach leapt, and he swore that his heart skipped a beat. Without knowing why, he found himself wanting to cross the room and immediately discover this boy’s name. He wanted to find out if those lips tasted as good as they looked.
He wanted to know him.
“Sir?” Rude’s voice seemed to shatter the spell that had woven itself around Reeve, and he quickly spun around, searching for words to say. However, his mouth refused to cooperate as if it were broken.
“I…” he trailed off, shaking his head fiercely, not that it helped to remove the thoughts of aquamarine eyes. “I apologize, Rude. Where was I?” he managed to form the one coherent sentence.
But even as the Turk spoke again, his mind drifted. He had a certain feeling that nothing was going to ever be the same again.
On the other side of the room, Tseng tapped the redhead on the shoulder, gesturing that the young man follow him. But the boy seemed fixed into place, staring in a daze at the other end of the lobby. Frowning, Tseng furrowed his brow.
“Reno, if you would prefer to be acquainted with Midgar’s jails, I would be most happy to escort you,” he declared tersely, perturbed by the boy’s obvious unawareness of him.
Aquamarine eyes blinked as a strange feeling coiled in Reno’s belly. It wasn’t unsettling, merely significant. As if something important had just happened, something that he should always remember. That man, those amber eyes… He couldn’t understand.
“What are you looking at?” Tseng demanded impatiently, beginning to feel a tic forming in his left eyebrow.
Reno swallowed thickly, gradually feeling the warmth in his cheeks fade. “Who… who be ‘dat?”
The Turk commander followed the line of Reno’s stare with his own gaze, trying to discern what had captivated his attention. He smirked when he recognized the other man.
“That,” he explained with some amusement, “is Reeve Tuesti, the architect who designed Midgar.” He tugged on the younger man’s arm, using enough strength to pull him away. “And if you actually succeed in the Turks, you might get to meet him some day.”
“I’ll make it,” Reno mumbled under his breath.
The Wutaiian blinked. “Pardon?”
“I’m going to meet him,” the redhead reiterated a bit louder, sucking in a deep breath as he allowed the Turk second-in-command to lead him away. “I’ll make it.”