Motivation

*******

by nekojita

*******

Ecstasy skittered along Rufus’ nerves; sharp, relentless pricks of potent emotion that took over his body and senses until he came. As if from far away he heard a crashing sound and his lover’s loud, raspy voice, but all that mattered just then was the searing pleasure coursing through him in waves. He closed his eyes to savor the moment and sensations, the world fading out almost completely during his orgasm.

Unfortunately, such bliss wasn’t meant to last for very long, as reality returned and brought little annoyances and aches in its wake. Rufus opened his eyes and stared at Reno’s naked back, at crimson strands clinging to pale, sweaty skin that bore several bite marks along the shoulders. Reno was slumped half on top of the desk, his arms folded beneath his head. For a moment, Rufus enjoyed the sight of his lover before it slowly sunk into his pleasure-fuddled mind that his laptop was no longer on his desk and his mug of coffee had been overturned… spilling the beverage onto an important stack of documents.

"Fuck, Rufus!" Reno hissed when Rufus quickly pulled out of his lover, doing his best to force his trembling legs to move. He glared at Reno as he made his way around the desk, the expression growing more furious when he found his laptop on the floor. "What the hell is your problem?"

"You broke my computer!" Rufus leaned over to pick up the laptop, sickened by the sight of how the screen was black and cracked. It beeped when he tapped a key, the fans still running and one of its drives humming. "What the hell did you do to it? And to my coffee!" He’d been working on those documents for over two hours that day, and from the looks of things, they’d have to be reprinted and signed.

Reno leaned against the edge of the desk, his narrowed eyes half-hidden by his extremely tousled hair and his arms folded over his chest. "They were both fine until you decided to fuck me *into* the damn desk!" His left arm moved to rub at the red line along his lower abdomen, the flesh bruising in a few spots. "I said we should move to the couch, but you were the one who wanted to do it here!"

Setting the laptop aside, Rufus lashed out with his right arm and snatched at his lover’s long hair. "The information on that computer is worth your life several thousand times over, Reno," he said as he yanked on the strands, his voice nearly roughened into a snarl. "You better hope that it’s easily retrieved or you’ll find yourself permanently stationed as far from the Edge as possible!" The angry words were an exaggeration as he’d never send his lover away like that… though he was seriously considering asking Tseng to assign Reno on Reactor duty for the next couple of weeks.

"Then I suggest the next time you wanna fuck me on *your* desk that you take care of *your* damn laptop first!" Reno didn’t shout the words, instead his tone of voice was quiet and surprisingly composed. That quietness and the gleam in his aquamarine eyes were a warning that Rufus was too furious to be concerned about now, although he did let go of Reno’s hair.

"How about you just stay the hell out of my office?" Rufus swiped his hand through the air and sent the ruined pile of documents flapping about, as well as a silver pen flying halfway across the room. "Do your job for once and leave me the hell alone!"

Reno let out a hissing breath as he pushed away from the desk and began to snatch his clothes off the floor, his movements jerky with anger. "I don’t fuckin’ believe that I gave up my lunch break for this shit! Spend half the damn day checkin’ out some stupid convention center so you don’t get your ass shot off, only for mine to end up sore an’ you rantin’ about some fuckin’ laptop!" He grabbed a white leather shoe from the floor and threw it at Rufus, who barely got his arms up over his face in time to deflect it. "*You’re* the one not worth this shit!"

As upset as Rufus had been before about the paperwork and computer, he was utterly livid at Reno throwing things at him. Moving as fast as possible, he did his best to tackle his lover to the floor, intent on shaking some manners into the bastard, but once his hands grabbed hold of Reno’s shoulders, he found himself turned about. Reno did something, a sudden twist of his back and jerk of his arms, and Rufus was the one lying on the floor, the wind knocked out of him from the force of slamming against it. Reno settled on his hips, hands wrapped tightly around his wrists.

"I will shoot you for this," Rufus threatened, doing his best to mentally visualize where his gun was at the moment. Despite the seriousness to his voice, Reno merely smiled and shook his head.

"Nah, I’m faster than ya." Now that he seemed to have the upper hand, Reno’s anger was drastically lessened from moments before. "By the time you reached it, I’d be out the door." For a few seconds, the cruel gleam returned to his eyes. "Or I’d snap your neck."

He could do it, too. Rufus had seen his lover in action before, knew very well how much damage the wiry strength in the body pinning him to the floor could inflict on a person. "You better enjoy it, because that would be the last thing you’d ever do." It sunk in that he was taunting a Turk to kill him, which wasn’t the most sensible course of action to follow.

Reno’s eyebrows shot up and he smiled as he leaned closer. "I don’t know, sounds like you *want* me to do it. I could argue with Tseng that it was some twisted form of suicide on your part." His good humor faded a little. "I mean, come on, you fuck me sore then pick a fight."

"Because you ruined a stack of important papers and possibly destroyed my computer." Putting to use a trick that Tseng had taught him a few years ago, Rufus managed to unseat his lover and sit up while Reno rolled out of arm’s reach. "All because you were bored and wanted sex."

"Hey! I came in here to kill some time, true, but I don’t recall jerking myself off on your desk." Reno sat on the floor with his arms folded over his bare chest, hair falling around his shoulders and eyes narrowed in anger. "Takes two to fuckin’ tango, ya know."

Rufus slowly rose to his feet, half-tempted to throttle the bastard but ultimately unwilling to have Tseng burst into the office and break apart the resulting fight while he was still naked. First clothes, then he could see if oxygen deprivation knocked some common sense loose in his lover’s head. "*You* search me out for sex, that makes it your fault." He’d be almost as happy spending the day getting things done, as opposed to constantly – if very pleasurably – being distracted.

"Yeah, and somehow I forced you to repeatedly stick your soft dick in my ass." Reno snorted in derision and rolled his eyes for added effect. "If my powers of persuasion were so damn good, why am I still a Turk and not the President of ShinRa?" He didn’t seem in any hurry to put on his clothes, even when Rufus tossed his pants at him.

"Because the company would be run into the ground within a month if you were in charge." Rufus pulled on his black dress shirt and then his white one, somewhat amused by the conversation and refusing to show it. "Between wasting all the profits on alcohol and spending as much of the work day as possible having sex, the company would never survive. As is, I’m surprised it’s doing as well as it is with the amount of time you distract me."

Reno shrugged and finally stood to his feet, his black pants held in his left hand. "So, if we were to stop fucking on company time then ShinRa’s profits would increase?" He tilted his head to the side and gave Rufus an impish grin. "If I stay out of your office for a week, can I have all the extra cash?"

It was Rufus’ turn to snort and roll his eyes. "No, but I’ll see about Tseng giving you a commendation of sorts." His shirts buttoned and neatly tucked into his pants, he fussed with his tie before putting on his black vest. The layers of clothes actually helped to calm and remind him that he was the one in control and that it didn’t benefit him to lose it. "Although I seriously doubt you could manage two days without sex, let alone a week."

Reno’s expression went from devilish to contemplative, and he thankfully began to get dressed. "I thought we were talking about no sex at work, but guess it’s more of a bet if we agree to none at all for a whole week." He stared at Rufus, his seriousness so unexpected and out of character that Rufus stopped fussing over his clothes and paid full attention to his lover. "Okay, if I don’t instigate sex for seven days, starting now, then you owe me a hundred thousand gil."

"That’s a rather large sum of money," Rufus pointed out, intrigued by the idea despite himself. "What do I get in return?"

"What do you want?" Reno, now dressed in boxers and his pants but lacking a shirt, leaned against the window behind Rufus’ desk. "Can’t be money because you make a hell of a lot more than I do, so name something you never thought I’d agree to." His grin made a comeback, downright evil and so very tempting that Rufus found himself stepping forward without any thought on his part.

Shaking his head to clear it a little, Rufus told himself that he’d have to watch things like that if he didn’t want to lose this bet. As for his prize… he dredged up and discarded several ideas as not good enough. For the amount of money on the line and the fact that he’d be depriving himself of something he highly enjoyed for a week, it had to be worth it. Reno didn’t have anything he wanted, and he’d yet to find something of a sexual nature that his lover wouldn’t do when asked under the right circumstances. A wicked grin of his own curled his lips when he came up with an idea. "I want ShinRa’s logo tattooed on your ass." That was something he’d fantasized about a time or two, the red and black start on his lover’s white skin, and something that Reno would do his best to kill him over if he had it done under any other circumstances. As with most things in life, Rufus didn’t believe in dealing with bets in a half-assed manner.

As it was, Reno pushed away from the window, his eyes gleaming with anger and lips pressed tightly into a frown when he heard the condition. Foreseeing a long string of foul complaints, Rufus held up his right hand. "You did say ‘something I’d never agree to’, Reno. If you want that much money for *not* being a distraction and causing me problems, then I’m allowed to demand something outrageous from you. It’ll only happen if you lose the bet, after all." He didn’t bother to keep the smugness and amusement from his voice just then.

Reno bared his teeth for a few seconds before changing the expression into a sardonic smile. "Yeah, right. I might end up with a sore ass after a few days, but it won’t be from a tattoo, and I’ll be a lot richer. You won’t last three days, Rufus."

"I believe I’m not the man renowned for his lack of control." His smile took on a hard edge as he returned to his desk and did his best to restore it to some sort of order.

"Oh yeah, that’s why we always end up having sex in here," Reno scoffed. Bending down to pick up his shirt, he was quiet as he pulled it on and did up a couple of buttons. "Even if I’m not gonna lose, I won’t agree to a tattoo on my ass."

"Then pick wherever you want it." Rufus was pleased to discover that the notes he needed for a meeting in half an hour had withstood Reno’s attack on his desk. "But don’t expect to get out of having my name permanently inked onto your body within a week’s time." Oh yes, that should be quite a lesson for Reno, one he’d never forget whenever he saw the logo. Rufus may have allowed himself to overindulge in his lover after recovering from Geostigma and realizing his true feelings for Reno, but he did possess a sense of control. There was no way he’d allow his lover to best him on this matter, and it was time for the man to realize just who was in charge of their relationship.

Heading for the door, Reno shook his head and clicked his tongue several times. "You’re the most possessive bastard I’ve ever met, Rufus. Best get used to the idea of giving me some of that money of yours, and if you’re a good boy, maybe I’ll spend a little on ya." He waved goodbye before leaving, busy mumbling something under his breath.

Rufus watched the door to his office close shut and reached for his phone so he could call someone to fix his computer. After he’d arranged for one of the Turks skilled at IT to come to his office, he sent a message to Tseng to request some additional sparring sessions for the next few days. He’d have a bit free time on his hands and want an outlet of sort for tension, and would need as much strength as he could manage when it came time to drag Reno to the tattoo parlor.

*******

Two days later found Rufus glaring at the new screen on his laptop. "Tell me that these figures aren’t right," he ordered Tseng, who sat on the opposite side of his desk and leaned forward when Rufus turned his laptop around. "I know extra overtime was authorized because of the Earth First incident, but that still seems to be too high a number for Turk salaries for the last quarter." His glare went up a notch when he noticed how easy it was for Tseng to move about, something he couldn’t quite manage after their recent sparring session. While he’d learned how to counteract the trick that Reno had used on him the other day, he’d earned some spectacular bruises during the ‘lesson’. Only his pride kept him from using a potion to get rid of the marks and aches.

Tseng stared intently at the screen for a moment then typed a few things on his handheld. "Ah, that’s it. The bereavement payments for Sara and Jared’s families were included in the salary budget, President."

"Thank you." Rufus turned his laptop to face him and typed a comment next to the figures. "I’ll talk to the accountants and have them set up a separate budget for that." One that he wished wouldn’t be used, but wasn’t foolish enough to believe would be ignored. Once those payments were removed from the total on his screen, the numbers were more or less what they should be. "I’m going to need some calculations for this recent quarter; the budget will have to be adjusted for all the new recruits." Today’s meeting was one of the necessary but mind-numbingly boring ones he detested, a careful check to make sure departments weren’t wasting his money or the accountants embezzling it. There was a quick thought of how Reno coming to his office after Tseng left would make the day so much better, followed by a flash of lust that shot straight to Rufus’ groin, but he ignored both. Two days without sex wouldn’t kill him, neither would seven, and he’d have proved something to Reno in the end.

Make that prove something to a lot of people in the end, he thought when he looked up from his laptop to see Tseng’s failed attempt to hide an amused grin. "Yes?" I wasn’t aware that fiscal matters could be so entertaining."

"I’m sorry, President, but I was thinking how much this week will throw off my budget estimates," Tseng said by way of explanation as he tapped onto the screen of his handheld several times. "Two potions were required to heal the recruits that Reno ‘sparred’ with yesterday, and it took a hi-potion to revive a target that Reno subdued with excessive force before bringing him in for questioning. Also, three company vehicles have been damaged so far this week, one of the helicopters needs a new paint job and a vending machine had to be replaced." Tseng tapped a few more times. "Ah, I forgot about the new carpet required around the vending area, since the machine dispensed soda."

Rufus reminded himself not to do any more damage to his laptop this week or he really would need a new one. His clenched hands settling on his lap, he felt torn between smirking over Reno’s difficulties on keeping the bet and frowning at the thought of what all of those damages cost. The fact that his idiot lover had told everyone about the bet didn’t help matters, as in the case of the still unsuccessfully hidden amused grin on Tseng’s face.

"We could charge all of the employees an entertainment fee for this week’s amusement," he said, voice thick with annoyance and sarcasm.

"That is actually a very inventive solution, sir." Tseng typed in some sort of note. "As it is, I’ve set Rod up as bookie for the bets taking place on which of you two wins. Ten percent of the money will go to the Turks’ discretionary fund."

There were very good reasons why Tseng was in charge of the Turks, and several of them had to do with the fact that he could out-think, out-evil and just plain manipulate the hell out of the best of his people. The only thing that kept him from being a threat in Rufus’ eyes was that Tseng had no desire to run ShinRa Electric Power Company. "For the sake of your upcoming raise, you’d best tell me that I’m the favored winner," Rufus said, unable to hide a smile of his own.

"Of course, President." Tseng nodded once and raised his handheld so Rufus could read the screen. "By three to one, in fact. Most of the bets pick this weekend to be when you win."

A little disgruntled that he didn’t have better odds in his favor, Rufus reminded himself that Reno was known to be very devious and successful in getting what he wanted. "Who did you bet on, and what day did you pick?"

Tseng’s smile just then was an uncomfortable reminder of Reno at his wickedest. "It wouldn’t be right for me to bet, President."

"So, what did Elena bet, then?"

"It also wouldn’t be right for me to divulge that information to someone participating in the bet," Tseng pointed out in a rather smooth manner. "Did you have any questions about the security guards’ budget, sir?"

Recognizing a definite change in the subject, Rufus shook his head and resumed pulling up information on his laptop. "No, everything seems to be in order." No longer willing to dwell on the topic of the bet and what he had to go without in order to win it, Rufus returned his attention to the documents on his laptop.

*******

Rufus woke up to discover that he’d spooned against Reno’s back, his morning erection nestled in the cleft of his lover’s ass. For a moment, he wanted nothing more than to nibble on Reno’s neck then reach for the lubricant on the nightstand so he could fuck the redhead, but he forced himself to move away and leave the bed.

Sleeping with the man he wasn’t allowed to have sex with for four more days wasn’t the brightest of ideas, but neither he nor Reno were willing to expose any weakness by being the one to retreat to the guest room. That and perhaps they both were a bit masochistic, considering how much more difficult it became each night to just turn off the lights and go to sleep without touching each other.

He’d been willing to bet that Reno wouldn’t have lasted past the second night, but his lover had and Rufus still wasn’t willing to lose the bet. With two more days of work left before the weekend, he’d have to spend some time on thinking up ways to torment Reno into losing his self control; he was certain that Reno would be doing his best to drive Rufus wild once the weekend came and they spent more time alone together. No, it would be a good idea to be the one to move first onto the offensive, especially when Rufus’ pride was at stake.

There would be no way to live down losing to Reno, of all people, and Rufus refused to show any sign of weakness. He indulged himself with his lover because he *could*, not because he couldn’t help himself. Once that was clear and Reno had a permanent reminder of that fact tattooed onto his body, then Rufus could indulge himself.

Until either the week’s time was up or Reno gave in, he’d do his best to concentrate on work to sublimate the growing need for pleasure and release. He’d gone over two weeks without sex just a couple of months ago so he knew one week was very doable… but it had been easier to manage when Reno had been unconscious or pissing him off with a shitty attitude. Rufus shook his head to drive away the thought of keeping Reno knocked out for the next few days as he was sure it would violate the terms of their bet.

He fixed himself a cup of coffee and went to his office to work on a few things before getting ready for the day. By the time he’d showered and dressed, Reno finally rolled out of bed and got ready himself. He surprised Rufus by showing up in the kitchen dressed in a pair of torn designer jeans, layered t-shirts and a battered leather jacket.

At Rufus’ inquisitive look, Reno shrugged and poured himself a cup of coffee. "Tseng wants Rude and I to check out a few things around the Strip," he said, mention of the worst slums in the Edge an instant explanation.

"You better not cost me any more potions," Rufus muttered as he finished his coffee, ready to head to his office now that it was clear that Reno wouldn’t be going with him this morning.

Setting his mug aside, Reno grabbed hold of Rufus’ coat lapels and pulled him forward for a quick kiss that made up in passion what it lacked in duration. "Such a sweetheart, Rufus. I’ll be fine." His mouth lingered over Rufus’ for a moment, both of them breathing rather heavily, then pushed away. "Might not be back until late tonight."

"You’re just trying to get out of having to work tomorrow." Rufus was proud that his voice didn’t waver at all, considering how out of sorts he felt at the moment. The desire to shove Reno up against the counter and have sex was very strong, but he refused to lose control of himself.


Reno winked at him over the edge of his mug, which Rufus took to mean that he’d guessed correctly. Shaking his head at the ways that Reno thought up to get out of work, he forced himself to leave the room, to walk away from his lover. Despite his concern over what could be a dangerous mission, he felt some relief that Reno wouldn’t be hanging around his office today.

Four more days to go, Rufus reminded himself.

*******

The day was much like the last two, boring as hell but very productive. Rufus was actually faced with the prospect of leaving early since his meetings were done for the day, all the necessary paperwork reviewed and signed, and his inbox clear for once. There were no plans for the evening, so perhaps he’d wait a bit to see if Reno would come home at a decent time or not and go out to dinner. It would be easier to be out in public instead of home alone, and it had been a while since they’d gone to the one restaurant that had the wonderful fish curry dishes.

He’d just shutdown his laptop when there was a commotion in the outer office, his secretary protesting about something. His gun was pointed at the doors by the time they slammed open, and he was thankful that he’d paused in firing off a shot when he recognized who it was stalking into the office. The fact that the Turks stationed outside hadn’t stopped the man had clued him in somewhat, but the sight of Reno’s bright hair escaping the cap he’d tucked most of it into made Rufus lower his weapon. He rethought that action when Reno continued to approach, clothes torn and covered with blood, face bruised and scratched, eyes gleaming with ferocious emotions and lips pressed tightly together.

"Reno, what-" The question was cut off by Reno shoving him against the wall of windows the same time that Rufus’ gun was snatched away and tossed aside. By the entrance, Tosh muttered something about Elena and Rude before closing the doors, but Rufus didn’t follow it very well because Reno’s tongue was currently shoved into his mouth.

While usually a very ardent lover was a good thing, Reno was covered with blood that was warm and sticky against Rufus’ palms. He tried to push Reno away to see how much of it belonged to the Turk, but Reno merely called him an asshole and pressed against him again, body taut with tension and cock already hard.

Living with a Turk had taught Rufus many interesting things, among them the fact that dealing with one of them after a stressful or bloody mission usually required either a very good diversion or a large dose of tranquilizers. He didn’t have any of the latter on hand, or materia for that matter, and Reno didn’t seem to have any difficulties standing on his feet, so…. Using the trick that he’d learned from Tseng the other day, he reversed their positions.


Reno cursed again as he hit against the window’s hard surface, his face twisting with pain, but before Rufus could ask what was wrong, he found himself jerked forward for another kiss. Deciding it would be easier to check out the idiot’s injuries after they had sex, he stopped fighting and gave in to desire.

Doing their best to get rid of their clothes, Reno actually tore at Rufus’ garments and for once Rufus didn’t give a damn. As much as he enjoyed the feel of fabric ripping in his hands, Reno’s clothes were already too torn to provide much enjoyment for him. Once they were gone, he could see the bruises that covered his lover’s chest, along with several gashes that would need medical attention soon.

"Reno…."

"Shut up." There was a desperate edge to the redhead’s voice, his pupils so dilated that they almost obscured the color of his eyes. His fingers dug into Rufus’ naked shoulders and prevented him from pulling away. "Fuck me, dammit. Fuck me or I’ll…." He let out his breath in a sharp hiss before closing the distance between them for a brutal kiss.

Nails scraped down Rufus’ back and made him twitch in pain. That sharp sensation only fueled his desire, made him grab hold of his lover and jerk Reno hard against him as he was scratched again, with enough force to draw blood. Only the need shining in his lover’s eyes kept him from knocking aside Reno’s arms. Instead, he deepened the kiss by thrusting his tongue as far as it could go into Reno’s mouth. Their groins grinded together as he knocked aside the cap Reno wore so he could play with his lover’s hair.

The sweaty strands were one of the few areas on Reno’s body that was free of blood. Rufus felt the urge to trail his mouth down Reno’s neck, to bite sharp collarbones but wasn’t willing to lick the blood that covered his lover. Considering Reno’s fervent demand for sex, he was certain that despite the cuts, most of it belonged to the day’s targets.

Three days wasn’t a long time to go without sex, but Reno’s dark, demanding nature drew out something inside of Rufus, something equally dark and insistent on satisfaction. It was almost as if a madness was in the air, radiating from Reno to infect him. The thought of someone touching his lover, bruising pale flesh and leaving marks on a body that *belonged* to Rufus, only fueled the need and insanity. His lover’s body was already torn and bloody, the injuries causing enough pain that surely Reno wouldn’t notice or care if Rufus spun him around and thrust into him without any preparation. In fact, that was what his lover urged him to do as Reno’s hands fumbled with the zipper of Rufus’ pants.

Hearing those words helped to shock some sense into Rufus, to snap him from the shared insanity. He wasn’t someone too weak to resist base impulses and do something he’d regret. Reno was his, and he’d only abuse his lover if it was what *he* wanted. Right now wasn’t such a moment, not when Reno was already battered and bruised. Instead, Rufus pushed himself away from his lover, his hands skimming down Reno’s chest as he sunk to his knees on the white, blood-splattered carpet.

Reno’s cock was fully erect despite the pain he must feel, hard and red and jutting upward, its head slick with precome already. Not giving himself much time to think, Rufus grasped its base with his right hand and took its tip into his mouth, forcing himself to breathe through his nose. The smell of blood, sweat and musk was a surprising aphrodisiac, almost as potent as Reno crying out his name and trembling so hard he threatened to fall to the floor. Rufus braced his lover as best he could, his left arm wrapped around Reno’s waist as he took more of his lover’s cock into his mouth.

There was a flash of memory, of their positions reversed, the feel of rain and the smell of blood and cordite. Just like Rufus had been back then, Reno was too on edge from the thrill of violence, the rush of taking down an enemy and walking away. Add to that pain and blood-loss, and Rufus’ lips had barely brushed against his right hand when Reno snapped his hips forward while uttering a guttural cry. Having expected such a reaction, Rufus just managed to pull away in time, and felt the warm splash of come against his chin and upper chest as Reno came. He managed to forget his distaste over the situation by watching his lover’s face during the orgasm, the way that all of Reno’s emotions were made so plain.

As soon as he loosened his hold on Reno, the dazed redhead came crashing down to the floor, knees buckling and eyes fluttering shut as he fell. Rufus managed to keep the idiot mostly upright, Reno a lethargic, limp bundle in his arms. He wiped his chin against his lover’s shoulder and tried to figure out how to get them both upright and Reno down to Medical. Oh, and there was the slight problem with their lack of clothes and that Rufus looked as if he’d been attacked.

"You’re a suicidal idiot," he said, his concern growing when he felt more liquid warmth run down his chest and realized that it was blood.

Reno managed a weak chuckle and tried to push back the hair clinging to his face. "Do-don’ think Alim would do that. So…." He chuckled again and tilted his head back enough to look up at Rufus. His pupils were still expanded, his smile a touch crazed, but Rufus had the feeling his lover was more ‘together’ than he’d been upon entering the office. More than likely, there’d have been bloodshed if Reno had been dragged off to Medical in the first place, still buzzing from all that adrenalin.

His theory proved correct when the office doors opened to admit a rather tattered Rude, suit torn in several spots and splattered with blood, glasses scratched and face bruised. Behind him was Tseng, immaculate as always, who held a towel in his hand. "Take him," Tseng ordered, and Rude paused to remove his coat and drape it over Reno’s shoulders before picking him off the floor. "Neither of you are to leave Medical until released by Alim."

"Yes, Tseng." Rude nodded once before carrying a protesting Reno out the door with an ease that was almost frightening. That left Rufus, half undressed and covered with blood and come, kneeling on carpet that would need one hell of a cleaning to be considered ‘white’ again.

"Wouldn’t it have been easier to tranquilize him or hit him with a spell?" he snapped as he snatched the offered towel from his employee’s hand. Thankfully, it was warm and damp, which helped to clean off most of the mess clinging to his skin. His suit, however, was clearly ruined.

"He broke the arm of the security guard who tried to do just that, and none of the Turks were willing to get in his way." Tseng shrugged and leaned against the edge of Rufus’ desk, arms folded over his chest and long legs crossed at the ankles.

"I’d think your people would have more of a spine than that." Rufus tried not to be disgusted with how quickly the towel became filthy.

Tseng gave him a cool, even look in response. "President, he’d just fought his way out of a trap and left over twenty bodies in his wake. By ‘broke a guard’s arm’, I mean ‘shattered the man’s bones’, and none of my people were willing to risk casting any spells on him in case he had a negative reaction to the materia. Rude assessed his condition and figured a… quick detour up here wouldn’t worsen it, and I trust his judgment. It also gave Alim time to prepare for Reno, who most likely will be properly sedated as soon as Rude gets him to Medical. "

Rufus tossed the stained towel aside and combed his fingers through his mussed hair. Other than blood-loss, he was willing to bet that Reno wasn’t too badly injured, not if he’d managed his way to Rufus’ office. Most likely, once Reno was calm enough to have a potion poured down his throat, he’d be fine. "Tell me about the trap," he said as he rose to his feet and went to the desk, where there was a container of wipes he could use to finish cleaning himself.

"Reeve asked me to have some Turks investigate a small organization that was rumored to be selling materia-powered weapons." Tseng paused as he evenly regarded Rufus, who nodded to show that he remembered being informed about the request. "I plan to have a word with him about the intel he gave me in regards to the situation." His voice turned completely cold, his dark eyes flat and emotionless, leaving Rufus to wonder if he could manage to be there for that discussion. Tseng never took such requests lightly since it was his people in danger, and didn’t have much respect or affection in the first place for someone who had betrayed ShinRa. Reeve was going to have a very difficult time requesting Turk help in the future, and Rufus wouldn’t interfere as long as Tseng had doubts about the safety of his people.

He also wasn’t happy with the thought that this was the second time in several weeks that Reno had gone out on a mission and suffered from poor or inaccurate intelligence. There was a slight pain in his chest when he remembered Reno lying so still in the bed down in Medical, covered with bandages and bruises. "Do whatever you feel is necessary to ensure that the situation doesn’t happen again," he ordered, doing his best to keep all emotion from his voice.

Tseng bowed his head and straightened up. "Thank you, President." He bent down to gather together Reno’s ruined clothes, and to Rufus’ shame, retrieved a pistol that he hadn’t even been aware that Reno had brought into the room. That reminded him about his own weapon, which he fetched along with its holster. "I’ll contact the cleaners about the carpet. Will you go home now or wait for Reno?"

"I’ll see what Alim says about his condition and then decide," Rufus said as he went to the closet for some clean clothes. So much for his quiet dinner out tonight, he thought with some annoyance. Now he’d have to deal with a drugged lover and Dr. Alim’s blatant disapproval when he called Medical to find out Reno’s condition.

Some of that annoyance must have crept into his voice since Tseng did his best to stifle a laugh. When Rufus turned to glare at the Turk, Tseng bowed his head. "I believe you won the bet, President."

It took a moment for Rufus to realize what the man meant. When he did, he couldn’t help but smile. "Yes, it certainly looks that way." His smile faded as he removed a white shirt from its hanger. "Did ‘Elena’ win any money?"

Tseng’s good mood vanished; he straightened up his back and the frown from earlier returned. "Yes. The bet was placed on the belief that today’s mission would be enough of a challenge that Reno would need to… blow off some steam. However, I don’t think it was expected just how much of a degree it turned out to be." He bowed slightly before leaving the office.

Rufus watched him leave, half expecting someone to come bursting into the office at any moment. When a couple of minutes passed by in silence, he finished getting dressed, leaving his blood-stained clothes in a pile on the floor for the cleaning crew to deal with. He was halfway to the desk to retrieve his phone when it rang, Dr. Alim calling to inform him of Reno’s condition.

He remained in the office only long enough to confirm that Reno would be ready to go home shortly, once his wounds were cleaned and the potion had taken effect. It seemed the conniving bastard had managed to get tomorrow off after all, since Alim wanted to give him some time to recuperate from the blood loss. The thought that Reno could spend that time figuring out where he was getting tattooed restored Rufus’ smile as he left his office and the odor of blood behind.

*******

Reno barely resisted the urge to scratch at the new tattoo. He healed quickly, but the fabric of his pants kept rubbing over the sensitized skin. While he could push his boxers down far enough to avoid the tattoo, he couldn’t get away with that all the time while wearing his uniform pants. Grateful that he was on ‘lean against the wall duty’, he shoved his hands in his pockets and pushed them forward to tent the front of his pants a little.

"Stop fidgeting." Rude, standing beside him as they waited for Rufus to finish his meeting, turned to look at Reno and frowned. "It’s becoming annoying."

Reno stuck his tongue out at his best friend. "You try getting a tattoo near your damn crotch and see if it doesn’t itch like hell, pin cushion boy."

Rude snorted at the comment, his right hand rising to run a gloved forefinger along the metal bars and hoops in his ear. "I’m not dumb enough to lose a bet, moron."

"Who said I lost it?" Reno pitched his voice low since they weren’t at ShinRa headquarters. When Rude gave him an incredulous look, he smiled sweetly at his partner and batted his eyes.

"How about the fact that you clearly got something tattooed on you this past weekend, and I’ll wager a week’s pay that I know what the design is." Rude was the only person he’d told about all of the bet’s conditions; everyone else just knew that he and Rufus were trying to see who’d break down first during a week of no sex. Upon being told, the bald bastard had merely shaken his head and went off to find out who was in charge of the betting pool.

His smile taking on a smug edge, Reno rocked onto the balls of his feet and bounced a few times. "Yeah, I got the tattoo, but I knew that was gonna happen once."

Sighing rather loudly, Rude bumped his head against the wall behind him a few times. "Do I really want to know what you’ve done now?"


"Of course you do, partner!" Reno cackled, pulling on a chagrinned expression when the security guards standing at the other end of the hall stopped talking and gave him a curious look. He waited for them to resume their conversation and Rude to stop glaring at him for being so loud before explaining. "Look, we all know that the boss can’t stand losing, right? And I knew when I offered the bet that for him to accept it, that he’d want something really outrageous from me, something that *he* really wanted." He smiled in memory at how easy it had been to set things up, once he and Rufus had moved past wanting to kill each other because of the stupid laptop.

Rude pinched the bridge of his nose as if he had a headache. "And that was making you get a tattoo? Unlike you, Reno, the president is an intelligent man."

"Bastard," Reno muttered, losing his good mood for a moment until he felt a familiar itch. "He’s also possessive as hell and gets off on thinking he pulled one over on me." He tugged on the long earring that was swinging back and forth over his right shoulder. There’d been a risk that Rufus would have wanted something like him actually staying out of the office when ordered to do so, or perhaps for Reno to wear his uniform properly, but Reno had felt that the odds were sufficiently in his favor. Not many people realized that Rufus did enjoy being perverse for the hell of it at times. "I didn’t think it would be a tattoo," he admitted after a moment’s pause.

"You’re lucky that he didn’t sew your lips together," Rude replied with an amused snort. "Still, I don’t understand why you think you won the bet and why you’re not going ballistic at having… *that* tattooed on you."

Because the more that Rufus bound Reno to him, the more it proved that Rufus really did want him to stick around for a long time – however, that wasn’t something Reno would ever admit, even to his best friend. "You’ll see in about…," he pulled out his cell phone to check the time, "fifteen minutes."

He got another dubious look from his partner in response, Rude managing a rather depressed sounding sigh when Reno smiled. "Trust me."

"Never make *that* mistake again," Rude muttered, to which Reno did his best not to laugh and punch the bastard. Soon enough he’d prove to Rude that he wasn’t kidding around.

The meeting finally let out after about ten minutes, Reno and Rude snapping to attention when the door opened and Rufus stepped out with some idiot patting him on the back and thanking him for ShinRa’s contribution. While Reno understood that Rufus shelling out the cash was helping to placate the public’s anger over all the shit that Rufus’ father had pulled and distracted attention from some of the things the company had in development at the moment, he was getting bored to death with assignments like this. Hell, having a bunch of assholes trying to shoot him was a lot more entertaining, even if he did end up in Medical and bitched out by Alim in the end.

One could tell that Rufus was doing his best to not brush off the idiot or pull out his gun to make the man shut up; Reno tapped Rude on the left arm before he slid his left hand beneath his shirt and coat to tuck it into his pants’ pocket. That pushed his clothes to the side, his unbuttoned shirt revealing a good bit of skin while at the same time, his hand pushed his loose pants further down his hip. He knew just how far down they went when Rufus was suddenly staring at the area just above and to the left of his crotch, the same spot that had been itching for the last two days. Of course Rufus caught himself after a few seconds, but the too-impassive look that settled on his face informed Reno that he’d accomplished what he’d wanted.


Rude glanced back and forth between him and Rufus, his eyebrows arched over his sunglasses in a silent query. ‘Wait for it,’ Reno mouthed to his partner, the same time that Rufus told the jabbering idiot still patting him on the back that he had another important meeting to attend.

Falling behind his president as Rufus stalked down the hallway, Reno whistled a cheerful tune which prompted a whispered warning from his partner. As they made their way back to the car, he went through a mental countdown and was thankful that they’d driven to the meeting today instead of flying. Along the way, he watched how Rufus’ shoulders grew tenser, his lover’s hands balling into fists and pace growing quicker. Rufus managed several polite ‘goodbyes’ to various people they ran across on the way back to the vehicle, and Reno would bet good money that only he and Rude noticed the odd tone to man’s voice. A tone not so much of annoyance as just impatience at being kept from something that he wanted.

Once they reached the car, Rude did a quick walk-around to make sure it hadn’t been tampered with during the meeting When Reno opened the door for Rufus, his lover placed his hand right on the spot where he’d been tattooed. "Get in."

"Yes, sir." Reno risked a heated look before sliding inside, following behind Rufus so quickly that he damn near ended up on his lover’s lap. He almost laughed when he heard Rude’s aggrieved sigh when his partner closed the car’s door, and couldn’t hold it back when Rufus ordered Rude to take the long way back to work before raising the glass barrier for privacy’s sake.

"I’m not going to waste a potion on you if you let it get infected from messing around with it," Rufus hissed as he pushed Reno’s clothes aside to reveal the tattoo. The artist had done a great job, the red and black ink bright against Reno’s skin, the lines crisp and perfect. Rufus ghosted his fingers over skin glistening from the moisturizer plastered on to help it heal.

"It’s not my fault that my pants keep rubbing against it," Reno pointed out, smiling in pleasure at the look of desire on his lover’s face. He leaned back against the door, Rufus moving with him to remain close.

"You picked the spot so don’t bitch." Rufus’ fingertips formed a half circle around the tattoo, pressing intently against Reno’s skin the same time his mouth covered Reno’s. Judging from the heat of the kiss and how Rufus’ hand was sliding into his pants, Reno didn’t think that Rude would have to drive around in circles for very long.

Oh yes, Reno had picked the spot, and it just wasn’t because he refused to allow Rufus to tattoo or brand *anything* on his ass. No, he’d thought long and hard for several days about the tattoo once the bet had been made, on where would be the best place for it. A place not always visible but where it wouldn’t take too much effort to allow a bit of the tattoo to show. The one thing that Reno had counted on and hadn’t been disappointed in yet was that as soon as Rufus caught sight of the damn thing, it instantly snared his lover’s attention.


He’d have to watch how many times he pulled something like this as he didn’t want Rufus to get inured to the sight - not when he was counting on a little flash of red and black to make a certain president very malleable to his wishes. He figured even with all the teasing he took from the rest of the Turks and the indignity of having ShinRa’s logo permanently stuck on his body - *again* - it was worth it in the end to have a distinct advantage over Rufus. And advantage that, if used wisely, Rufus would never realize existed. *That* was why he’d gone through with the bet, to get Rufus to reveal something that could be used against him. Reno figured it just might save his neck a time or two… and hell, he wouldn’t turn down something that would get him laid whenever he was in the mood.

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