"Holy shit," Rude says admiringly when Reno slouches into the office. "What happened to you?"
"Fell down the fuckin stairs," Reno says. "You should see the other guy." His face still feels hot, aching, the new skin too sensitive after the burns he got on Saturday.
Rude snorts. "Fighting over what he did to your hair, I hope."
Reno glares, running a hand defensively through the weird spiky shit that his hair does on top now. "No, that was part of the fight. Fuckin sneaky bastard has gotten some skills with a fire materia since the last time I saw him." Reno might possibly have already been threatening to use his baton at that point, but still.
Rude's forehead creases, right above the bridge of his sunglasses. "Reno. This something we need to take care of?"
"Nah." Reno shakes his head weakly. "I been dealing with my fuckhead cousin for years. I don't need the fuckin Turks to back me up on this one."
"Mmm." Rude nods, takes a sip of his coffee. "Don't get along with your family?" The tone's casual, but there's all kinds of bullshit under it, about how Rude's lived above the Plate all his life, and of course Reno's under-Plate family can't have a simple fuckin reunion without sending each other to the hospital.
Or it's always possible that the fancy suits and fancy offices just have Reno on the defensive. "I get along with my family just fine. It's just my fuckin cousin is a no-good loudmouthed punk who'd do anything for attention."
"Hmm," Rude says, an entire fuckin treatise on pots and kettles and family ties. Reno glares harder. He'd been minding his own business on Saturday, not trying to make trouble at all. Okay, maybe he'd had two or three more drinks than he should have, and maybe that made him a little louder than he could have been when he started in on how nice it was to have a respectable job. But that was no excuse for Axel to call him a corporate thug. And maybe someone else -- Rude, for example -- could have just let that go, but Reno felt fuckin morally compelled to point out that people who sold drugs to children shouldn't throw stones -- and then Axel, that son of a bitch, said something about the Turks kidnapping street kids to have them shot full of drugs in labs, which was fuckin slander and hearsay, and -- it got kind of ugly after that.
"Anyway," Reno says, "Aunt Peggy says we can't have reunion at her house ever again. Even though the fire department got there in plenty of time. How was your weekend?"
"Quiet," Rude says. "Went to the theater."
"Yeah, hey, Loveless opened this weekend, didn't it?" Reno grins. "How was that?"
He fusses with his hair and doesn't really listen to Rude's answer. Maybe he'll keep it like this, he figures, to prove he can pull it off. Show Axel up a little. At least for a while.