phoeny: (XIII: pedobear approved)
[personal profile] phoeny
Fandom: Final Fantasy XIII
Title: Soul Sister
Characters/Pairing: Lightning, Serah, OCs, hint of future Farroncest
Warnings: Angst, mention of death, shifting POV, language and violence later on
Rating: M
Notes: Nothing much, except a cameo from our favorite ragtag bunch!

// Prologue\\//Chapter 1\\//Chapter 2\\// Chapter 3//



Day 2: Second Encounter





“YES MA’AM!” Both second-in-commands barked. They issued the new commands to the rest of the group, and every soldier grouped together to form an effective offensive front near the sand dunes that lead up to the edge of Bodhum. Releasing two firebombs, Ceviche and the injured soldier from before, Azia, flushed all the remaining Bloodbaths. Since the non-summoning Bloodbaths huddled over a summoner, they were quickly burned to crisps, leaving the summoners mostly vulnerable to the Sargeant.

Meanwhile, Lightning was rushing towards the shore to pick off stragglers that might be coming or going into the water. Checking to see if the shore was finally secure enough so that no more unexpected backup will come, she turned back towards the sand dunes in an effort to launch an inevitable stranglehold on the terrain. She just hoped that she didn’t tire out before finishing off all the remaining—her eyes widened at the scene before her—

Good job, soldiers. That will make it even easier for me. After this, Ceviche can play with all the fucking bombs he wants.

“Stop firing bombs! I’m coming up; shore’s secure. They’re cut off now!”

“Understood, Sargeant!”

Fortunately for her, the summoning Bloodbaths were attempting to start another heralding, interrupted from the bombs. Her eyes flicked from target to target to assess how she would go about it. A “Z” formation, or the plow tactic? Whatever, she would do what her instincts told her, and it was saying to go for the summoner in the back, left of center area. Snapping her fingers, she felt all her center of gravity travel down to the soles of her feet, propelling her in a high air flip. It became almost a sixth sense for her, at least what would happen afterwards. Switching to gun mode, she aimed, fired at the summoner, bullets shooting through the body before it collapsed in a dead heap.

Now stick the landing. Go for the two in front, move to the right and kill.

She obeyed her instincts and did stick the landing, the sand shooting upwards and to the side around her feet from the impact as she slid back from the momentum. Her Blazefire Saber was back into sword mode as she went for a Blitz attack, hitting two more with her sharp edge of her blade as she spun, giving her attack some effectiveness. Blood spattered from the wounds, some on the sandy ground, some caught on the edges of her formerly in-pristine-condition of a cape, the shrieks amplifying in the air as the summoners desperately tried to retaliate.

Finish them off, Farron. Disgusting as it may sound, now isn’t the time to be that squeamish about it. But did it have to be fucking green-colored?

“Haa!” Lightning cried out, as she brought her weight upon a straight cut down one of the Bloodbaths; the creature was partially split in half as it flopped around for a mere two seconds before all movements ceased. The other Bloodbath made no resistance as Lightning cut through its vitals. She felt the blade jerk a bit as flesh gave way—suddenly the blade touched air instead. Her senses were even more alert, somehow trying to tell her the Bloodbaths have picked up on something and was now trying to surround her.

Of course she would be surrounded. The earpiece cracked again, and Halbert asked, “Sargeant, you need help?”

“Not necessary. Focus on keeping them here.”

“Understood.”

There should be around four here. But they aren’t moving…why? Wait…or make the first move, soldier. Your call. Heh. Never mind, looks like they beat you into making the first move. Check your five o’ clock carefully—shit!

The Bloodbath at her five o’clock made its move, lashing out with its limbs. She countered with a downward swing, felt the familiar resistence traveling through her arm that screamed she drew blood. Something flashed in the left corner of her peripheral vision, as she raised her blade again to where she assumed the middle of the lump that was the Bloodbath’s body would be. A shriek came out again, as she landed on its vitals, piercing the jugular diagonally to the other side. Two down…and another one already leapt, aiming for her back.

Breathe, exhale, and swing! The Bloodbath veered off to the side from the impact of the force, leaving a messy green trail of liquid. One was left in the immediate area. And judging by the lack of voices screaming in her earpiece, her soldiers were holding their own, as it should’ve been from the very beginning. Currently, it was trying to attack from behind—well that wouldn’t work on her twice. Jumping back, she flipped around the monster, intending to strike from its behind when she was almost hit by a sizable amount of green liquid.

Lightning managed to not get hit by curling herself into a tight ball, anticipating the point of landing. Just what was going on? Not only was her uniform almost irrevocably stained, but the monster was still alive!

“We’ll help,” she heard—from where the shooter was presumably—along with an unmistakable sound of an airbike. It was a woman’s voice-- that much she could tell.

You have got to be fucking kidding me. Civilians—vigilantes, whatever they were trying to be—just don’t know when to quit with the spotlight. The bike is neither GC nor PSICOM standard issued, and it has been remodeled, judging from the little groan it makes when accelerating. A pure airbike would not make that kind of noise, even with wear and tear.

Irritated beyond belief, the Sargeant flicked her blade downwards, partially in an effort to clean the blade of the sickly green blood it accumulated, and partially because she couldn’t kill a civilian, no matter if they were kids trying to be wannabe heroes. Two Bloodbaths were making their way towards the airbike, but it swooped down and the woman shot them both.

“Hey there soldier. You were in a tough spot, right?” The driver of the airbike—a young man with blue hair—spoke up. The woman got off the bike and stood on the side of the airbike, hand on hip, the heavy weapon resting on her bare shoulder.

Hmph. Amateurs at their finest. Little clothing makes for burns, and lots of jewelry down your front makes for snags. Of course they would be inefficient in any kind of fight. He was no better. Those skinny jeans don’t look like they involve much movement. He’d be a sitting duck half the time without the bike. Is this all a game to them?

As best of a professional voice she can muster, she asked, “Who are you?”

“We’re NORA.” The young man was quick to answer. The lady on the other hand…

“If you’re a soldier from Bodhum, then surely you’ve heard of us?”

Well, isn’t she the confident type? Despite all these glaring disadvantages you put on your life, where do you two get the confidence? Hmph, you’re the kind of people that make my job more difficult.

“Sorry, never heard of you.” Lightning then spun on her heel, away from the two, instead heading for her soldiers, who endured the battle from start to finish, looking less than fashionable. Ceviche had a wider grin plastered on his face than necessary, and even Halbert had the corner of his lips into a smirk. Almost out of earshot, but not quite, the two were talking amongst themselves:

“But—“

“Weird, I could have sworn we were more famous than that…”

Pathetic. ‘Famous’, as if recklessly endangering yourselves should be praised—She walked faster to get away from their conversation—unbelievable that they think they’re entitled to being recognized. Yes, the Guardian Corps was fully aware of NORA’s activities, but we never took them seriously. Amodar told us not to take them seriously. How could we when their headquarters was a café by day, bar by night? The young lady was the bartender-- that much I do know. Even fresh cadets just out of Basic Training do better than all of them combined. Whatever, their lives are theirs to fuck up, unless they interfere with mine.

Taking out her wireless, Lightning called Sergeant Major Amodar to inform that the mission was successfully finished, even with the last bit of interruption of civilians at the end.

“Ha!” He had yelled out, “Just like Farron to say that. I’ll be back at the reconvening point, or where that airbike you took would be positioned at. I expect the soldiers to be in one piece unlike last time.”

Last time wasn’t exactly MY fault, Sergeant Major. Ceviche hid his drunkenness well, and Halbert couldn’t hold anything in, so he sat out.

“Understood, sir!”

“Ahh, don’t be so formal. Sooner or later, you’ll be going somewhere far.”

“Sir?”

“I’m already here, Farron. Where the hell are you?!” With that, he hung up before she can inquire any further. Looking at the screen for a couple of seconds, she flipped it closed and made her way over the where the rest of the soldiers were, in the middle of breaking their formation once they were sure the battle was done and over with. Tuning in her earpiece, she ordered a “Soldiers! Reconvening point. Sergeant Major Amodar is here to greet us.”

“Aww, we only get a party of one?” Ceviche quipped over the static, as she heard a couple of soldiers chuckling. All right, at least they weren’t nearly as annoying—Lightning can admit to that, at least.

“I’m almost to your position Private Ceviche. And I don’t want to hear it anymore.”

“…Understood, Sarge. Congratulations.”

<>Yes, almost there. What time is it? I... right, Serah. What to do about her? And I’m back to where I started. Maybe a shopping trip? She likes those. But she never wants anything! Did not help that I wasn’t even there for her last birthday. What was I doing? Oh yes, a patrol gone awry. Three punks decided to vandalize the whole city a week before my sister’s birthday, making as if monsters washed up ashore in the middle of the night and attacked. She had to be on call at nights, in addition to my regular patrol hours in order to catch them. Seemed as if years go by, the punks get elaborate in their crimes. The night of Serah’s birthday…was when the punks were caught. Ouch, now I have to put extra effort into getting on Serah’s good side again.

Lightning was caught up in her memories that she mostly ignored the pats on her back from fellow soldiers, congratulating the Sergeant for another job well done. A laugh—a series of hearty chuckles, more like it—snapped her back to attention. Yea, that was Amodar’s laugh, couldn’t miss it if she ever did bother to try. Wait, now these laughs didn’t sound like the Sergrant Major’s…

Amodar was with two unidentified men. There were three airbikes parked, and a little further off was her own airbike that she took to get here. Only one of those three was the standard issued bike for the Guardian Corps. The other two…looked similar to the remodeled one driven by those…amateurs. Ahh, so were they from the same group, NORA? Well, her superior was currently being dwarfed by a man in a trenchcoat, never mind the man who only knew how to wear vests and nothing underneath. At least they had a consistent style to them—inefficient for battle. And a little bit too sporty for her tastes. The man in the trenchcoat though…he had the aura of being the leader of the group. She was sure of it. Walking towards them, she kept her eyes on that man. He was sweltering under those clothes, but with the way he was talking to Amodar, you would think they were best buddies. Maybe too amicable for her as well. The more she thought about it, he was a little off-putting. As if she would hate them the moment she got to know him better. And she couldn’t pin her finger on it now, but she trusted her instincts, as so her guard would be up, even though she knew she was being rude to a complete stranger.

“Why, hey there Commander. Welcome back,” Amodar said as he noticed her sauntering up towards this small group.

“Commander? You shouldn’t joke about ranks, Sergeant Major. People might think it’s actually true.” Lightning shot back. Amodar can take her biting remarks and rolled with it, which was what he did. Leaning back, he gave another chuckle, before adding a “Well, you were the raid leader.”

That, she couldn’t deny. So she ignored that one… for now. She probably still had adrenaline pumping, so no need to take him so damn seriously. Instead, she went straight to the point.

“So who is this?” She asked, while eying the both of them… closer this time. She was sure she had seen them before.

“They’re NORA.”

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April 2012

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