Prince of the City

by Tenshi

All veils and misty
Streets of blue
Almond looks
That chill divine
Some silken moment
Goes on forever
And we're leaving broken hearts behind--


It would have to be done quickly. That was a given, an understood fact. He was prepared for such contingencies, of course. It was, after all, part of his job. Still, Tseng was a man who preferred things to be done properly: well planned, all forms filled out, all circles chalked.

But he did not miss opportunity either, surely not one so good as this, and there was nothing else for it.

Jack Shinra hadn't expected it, of course. He was pinned neatly to his desk on a skewer of steel, certain his loyal Turk would remove him from this predicament. Any other man would be dead, naturally, after such a wound. But the President of ShinRa Inc. was not any other man.

Tseng's carefully polished shoes squelched on the blood-drenched expensive carpeting. The President was bled so white as to resemble a well-made, albeit unpleasant, waxwork. "You've lost a lot of blood, sir." Tseng said coolly, as if giving his evening report. "That could be hazardous."

"I didn't hire you for your powers of observation!" the other man snapped, groping ineffectively for the sword through his chest. His pale lips were flecked with red. "Get this out of me, now." He glared balefully as Tseng made no motion to assist. "That was an order, not a suggestion."

It might kill you," Tseng purred, as if the president had not spoken. He looked speculatively at the sword. "Maybe." He reached into his jacket pocket as if retrieving his cigarettes, or his pistol. "But you always were resilient as a cockroach."

President Shinra made a small panicked noise, almost comical as he struggled to remove himself from Masamune. "Tseng! You Wutai son of a bitch, you wouldn't dare-"

The stake was rosewood, seventeen inches long, and extremely sharp. It went in neatly, clean between the ribs. President Shinra jerked as though having a seizure, choking on his words. "You- - bastard. I- - made you-"

Tseng, leaning over his employer, graced him with a rare smile. In the sleek sophisticated office lighting, his canines flashed clearly, deadly sharp and needle-bright. "Rufus," he said, to the fading horror on his sire's face, "Is mine."

Rufus' room was dark, the furniture loomed like ghosts. The heir of Shinra sat in the swivel chair by his desk, his eyes on the sparkling city outside the window. He didn't look up as Tseng entered, not even when the sound of his own door locking echoed through the room.


"Yes, Rufus-sama."

"My father is dead." It was not a question.


Rufus let out a breath as if he'd been holding it for years. "Did you- -?"

"Most of the work was done for me, but he is not an obstacle anymore." Tseng crossed the room. His shoes, carefully cleaned, made no sound and left no imprint on the white pile carpet. His fingers curved around Rufus' shoulders, feeling the structure of bone and muscle under the careful tailoring of his coat. "You will no longer be kept on a string like a doll."

Rufus lifted his face. He was unnaturally pale, deathly in the green mako light cast by his city. His blue eyes were shadowed. Over the years his life had been eked out of him, drop by drop. The public had been told he was away on his father's business, or at some expensive private school. "Then who will- -"

"I will." Tseng's eyes narrowed in an almost smile as Rufus blinked at him.

"You? Can you?" Rufus wrapped his arms around himself, his gaze going back to the city. "But-"

"There is nothing to be afraid of, Rufus-sama." Tseng lifted Rufus out of his chair, quelling the rage he felt at how weak the young man was, how light. "Your inheritance is long overdue."

Rufus rested his cheek on the lapel of Tseng's suit, his eyes half-closed. "I'm so tired, Tseng." He reached up a hand listlessly to pull at the collar of his turtleneck, exposing a pale throat that wore bruises in several stages of healing. Tseng caught Rufus' hand before he could tug his collar back into place. The latest mark was stained crimson, and only hours recent.

"I hope he burns in hell," Tseng growled, with uncharacteristic vehemence. The late president had bled Rufus dry, just like everything else he owned. Rufus did not hear, swooning on Tseng's shoulder, and made no protest as his bodyguard swept him up into his arms and into the bedroom.

"I'm cold," Rufus complained, folding in on himself and shivering. "I want my coat."

"Be patient." Tseng draped the trenchcoat over the chair, along with the rest of Rufus' clothes. It wouldn't do to stain them. There was not much to draw out of Rufus but Tseng had to at least make an attempt for the transition to work. He did not stir as Tseng sat down on the bed beside him, did not start a the touch of fingers on his skin, but Rufus shuddered as Tseng's mouth closed on his throat, his own mouth opening soundlessly. Tseng soothed him, stroking fingers down his abdomen until Rufus relaxed in his arms. Greedy bastard Jack Shinra might have been, but at that moment Tseng could not blame him. Rufus was achingly sweet like cranberry wine, hot and rich and intoxicating.

"Tseng." Rufus murmured, and not in protest. He lifted a hand to the heavy dark hair, sinking his fingers into it. His breathing was slow, the words slurred. "Tseng." Rufus closed his eyes, submitting, speaking as if to himself. "I used to pretend it was you."

Tseng pulled away, guilty for his indulgence. Rufus was still on the white silk sheets, his hair tumbling over his face. Tseng had never so much as touched Rufus before, knowing too well that his father had kept him on the edge of survival, not allowing for anyone else to have him without killing him. Typical, Jack. Typical.

The knife was Reno's, and borrowed, Tseng was not used to carrying such things. It was perfect for this work of course, as that was Reno's usual capacity, the steel edges sharpened to near invisibility. The cut shone white on Tseng's wrist for a moment, welling with red that left a smear against Rufus' lips. He spilled three perfect bright drops on the sheets, and feared it might be too late.


He stirred, mouth opening lazily against Tseng's wrist, the flicker of tongue curious at first, then suddenly voracious. There was something of Shinra greed in Rufus as well, and his long fingers wrapped fiercely around Tseng's forearm, trembling as he drank, not needing to stop for air. The marks on his throat bloomed backwards into pale smooth flesh, his heart thundered wildly against Tseng's shoulder.

"Enough," Tseng said at last, head spinning, as reluctant to surrender as he had been before, when Rufus was hot on his tongue. "Enough for now, Rufus-sama."

Rufus pulled back slowly, licking until the wound had closed. He smoothed back his hair absently and slid off the bed. Walking to his window he passed by his clothes without a glance, no longer cold. Tseng watched as Rufus critically eyed his reflection in the floor-to ceiling glass, the city transposed over his own image. "I won't change?" His voice was not as Tseng had ever heard it. By the time it had deepened into adulthood he was already a vessel, and there was weariness always to the sound of his words.

"You will not change."

Rufus slid his hands down his body. The frailty was gone, now he was just lean, smoothly muscled, like a predator. As if in answer to Tseng's thought he bared his teeth at the window, and slid the tip of his tongue against one sharp fang. "I approve."

Tseng allowed himself a smile. "As do I."

Rufus twisted, smiling back, no shadows on his face. "Do you, Tseng? I had hoped you might." He was fast, the motion from window to bed no more than a flutter of movement, and the mattress sinking under his weight. The pale blue eyes were sharper than Reno's knife. "How much do you approve?"

Tseng slipped his fingers into the pale mass of silk-fine gold hair, watching Rufus arch into the touch. "More than you know."

"So tell me." Rufus' fingers were deft on Tseng's tie, it slid out of his collar like a fleeing serpent. "It's not like before. You don't have to worry about killing me now, Tseng."

"I know." His jacket was off, flung to the floor by Rufus, leaving Tseng in shirt sleeves and holster. Rufus was unused to his new strength and not patient at the best of times, the pearl shirt buttons of Tseng's shirt scattered across the bed like falling rain. "Rufus." Tseng murmured into the sunlight hair. His voice caught as Rufus found his collarbone and keened faintly with pleasure at the salt of Tseng's skin against his lips. "My Rufus." He cradled the perfect face in his hands and Rufus lifted himself open-mouthed into the kiss. Tseng's tongue grazed the sharp tips of new fangs and Rufus' mouth was filled with the taste of him all over again, wet and heady and hotter than blood could ever be.

Fabric ripped protest, no time to shove the shirt off the rest of the way, to bother with belts and buttons and other impractical things. Rufus was on top of him, hot like the summer sunshine Tseng could still remember. "Yours," Rufus breathed, shuddering as fingers slid down his ribs, burying his face in the cool wave of Tseng's hair across his pillow. "Yours."

It was a simple motion; Tseng's hands closed around Rufus' hips and guided them down. Rufus cried out just once, not in pain, a noise he could not stifle, and wrapped his arms tightly around Tseng, his face pressed to Tseng's throat. Rufus learned quickly how to move, or perhaps he already knew, his aching sex hot as he rubbed it against Tseng's belly. The prick of fangs in Tseng's throat was a spur and Rufus' tongue was teasing, wanting only the taste. Tiny flickers of sensation moved from shoulder to jawline to the fragile skin of earlobe, piercing in time with the rhythm of Tseng's hips, licking each tiny wound closed. He hadn't yet realized he didn't have to breathe. His gasps came rapidly against Tseng's hair as he pressed as close as possible, not caring of the holster digging into his ribs.

"Harder," Rufus whispered, and shivered when Tseng's mouth found the jewel of materia he wore in his ear, biting him back. Tseng's grip shifted to hold him in place, half-gloved hands firm on his hipbone. Rufus fumbled for the headboard to steady himself but it was useless, Tseng's mouth was on his neck and there was a hot motion against his throat, needle-pain of penetration and Rufus was lost, flowing away into Tseng's kiss, flooded with warmth deep inside. Red spattered across moon-colored silk as he came, slipping into darkness like a dream.

It was still dark when Tseng woke, his night vision finding Rufus by the window even as his hands groped in the warm blankets for his lover. "Can't you sleep?"

Rufus had only his coat over his shoulders, his palms pressed flat to the glass of his window. "It's beautiful, isn't it?"

Tseng freed his legs from the sheets, standing over to look at Midgar. Even at this hour the city was alive, glittering like an exotic jewel.

"It is yours, Rufus-sama." Tseng stepped into Rufus' reflection, and the two of them were mirrored, hovering, over the city. "As I am yours."

Rufus sighed back into the welcome fold of Tseng's arms, his eyes still on Midgar, fingers reaching in disbelief to touch the image of Tseng's face, to touch the city itself. "Mine."

The ring was heavy gold, and warm from Tseng's pocket. President Shinra had been in no position to protest its removal, nor to prevent it now from sliding onto the finger of the son he planned to never let inherit. Tseng kissed the ring with a reverence he'd not felt for the former wearer, biting his lip to let one drop of blood splash onto the emblem, a fealty.

"Yours, My Prince."


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