In the middle of a cold, rainy night, you'd received an urgent call from Deepground. Someone, or something had left without permission and it was up to you to retrieve whoever, or whatever it was back. They'd given you very little information to go on, which wasn't at all helpful, especially not in your groggy state. The only information you had was that the escapee should be somewhere around the Shinra ruins. Usually when you got these sort of calls, the escapee was nothing more than a stray dog or cat, but you still had no choice but to go check it out.
After the call had ended, you forced yourself out of your warm bed and suited up. “Looks like it's time for me to go on another goose chase.” Not at all pleased to be going out in the rain when you should be resting, you stretched out your numb muscles and sighed. “Well, no use procrastinating. I might as well get this over with. If I'm lucky I'll get a bit of sleep before I have to get back up.” As you stepped out into the cold, slowly falling rain, you contemplated coming up with a false report; stating that you'd found an animal or wandering civilian, but it was nothing to worry about. “Nah, with my luck, something's actually going on out here.” You laughed to yourself, trying desperately to stay focused on your task.
For well over an hour, you searched the ruins for any sign of life, but found nothing. The rain had picked up considerably and the temperature had dropped to the point of making you shiver. “It figures. No one in their right mind would be out here right now.” More than ready to end your search, you pulled out your phone and readied to report what you'd found, or rather, what you hadn't found. Just before you hit send, you saw something. “You can't be serious. Someone's actually out here?” Shoving the phone back in your pocket, you headed in the direction of what you saw. You slowly shined your flashlight through the demolished ruins until finally, you spotted someone crouched by a large fallen stack of bricks and other ruble. “Nero? What are you doing out here?”
Pulled away from his deep thoughts by the unexpected sound of your voice, Nero stared at you in complete silence. It was incredibly unusual for Nero to be out here, and even more unusual for him to be away from Weiss.
“Are you okay?” You slowly inched your way closer to him, so as not to scare him off. Nero was always a bit weary of people, but right now he looked completely terrified of you. “You really shouldn't be out here, you could get sick. Really, neither of us should be out here. Why don't we go inside?”
“No.” He quickly pulled away from you, not wanting to be touched.
“Okay then, I guess we can stay out here. I'm really not allowed to leave you here though, so I'll just have to stay with you until you decide to go back inside.” It was a pain, and you really didn't want to stay outside, but what else could you do? “So, why are you out here anyway?”
Nero turned his eyes away from you, growing ridiculously defensive over your simple question. Not surprisingly, he didn't trust you. “I can't tell you that.”
“Alright, that's fine. You don't have to tell me anyway.” His response didn't shock you, but you were still curious. Whatever drew him out here had to be pretty important. Still, you knew if you tried to push him he would get angry with you, and that was the last thing you wanted to happen. “I guess I shouldn't be so pushy.”
For what seemed like a long time, neither of you said anything. You simply sat there, letting the rain permeate your clothing, soaking the cold skin below. If Nero wanted to say something, you were going to be there, if not, you'd just have to wait in silence until either he decided to go inside, or someone else showed up to take your place. Thankfully, this silence didn't last nearly as long as it could have. After about five minutes, Nero finally spoke. His voice was barely above a whisper, making him hard to hear over the now pouring rain. “Weiss is gone.”
As soon as he said that, you understood what was going on completely. “Oh, I see.” To Nero, Weiss was more important than anyone or anything. Having him disappear without warning was probably a lot for him to handle. Especially considering Nero's unstable mental state. “I'm sure I could find out where he is for you, if you wanted me to.” Knowing he wouldn't refuse your offer, you stood to your feet, extended your hand out to him and smiled warmly. “I've got connections you know.”
Much to your surprise, Nero actually accepted your hand, and stood up. Still not looking at you, he dropped his head down to his chest. He didn't seem to know how to react to your niceness. “Every time we've met, you've been so, kind to me.”
“Well, I do try.” You chuckled. “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar after all.” Eager to get back inside, you tried to pull him away from his spot, but for some reason, he wouldn't move. Though you really just wanted him to hurry up and follow you, you knew you shouldn't try to rush him into anything. If you did, he'd just resist you all the more. “Is something the matter?”
“You could be lying to me.” Suddenly losing all faith in you, he roughly, and angrily pulled his hand from yours and took a step back. “Why should I trust you? You're just telling me what I want to hear so I'll do what you want.”
A little disheartened that all of your work building his trust had been destroyed in a mere instant, you were having a hard time keeping a smile on your face. You knew, however, that if you wanted him to believe anything you were saying, you had to remain as calm, and friendly as possible. “I can understand why you might think that, but it's not the case.”
Taking yet another step away from you, Nero shook his head, unconvinced by what you'd said. “You have no proof of that. Why should I believe you?”
“That's very true. I don't have any proof at all.” You nodded, not about to lie to him. The last thing you needed right now was for him to catch you in a lie. “I don't know what I could give you as proof though, so really, you're just going to have to trust me. If you don't, there's a good chance you won't find out where Weiss is until he gets back. I doubt anyone else would tell you if you were to ask them.” You hated to resort to such tactics, but at this point, you didn't know what else to do. “Are you coming or not?”
After letting your words sink in for a moment or two, Nero weakly nodded. “It doesn't look like I have many options.”
“You can do whatever you want, but I'm pretty sure you'll be glad you chose to come along with me in the end.” A little too confident for your own good, you took his hand again and started to head back inside. Without his hands bound, Nero could have easily ended you. There was no one there to stop him either. For some odd reason, you weren't about worried about that happening at all. Everyone else pictured him as a dangerous, monstrous lunatic, and while it was true that he was indeed very dangerous, you had never found yourself afraid of him. Actually, you often found yourself feeling sorry for him. Maybe this different way of thinking was why you could get closer to him than anyone else could.
Once the two of you were finally back inside, you tried to release his hand. Nero, however, wouldn't let go of you. Holding you painfully tight, he narrowed his thin, red eyes at you. “I still don't trust you. If I let you leave, you may not come back.”
“Nero, you can't come with me. If no one told you why Weiss left, there's a very good chance that they didn't want you to know.” Wincing from his tight hold, you tried to free your hand from his. “It's probably best if you wait for me here. As soon as I find out what's going on, I'll come straight back here and tell you everything I know.”
He didn't want to let you leave until he'd gotten his answer, but there was no denying your logic. “If you don't come back, I will find you.” Though he hadn't said it outright, you knew he meant what he said as a threat.
“I'll come back to you, cross my heart.” You used your free hand to draw a large “x” over your heart. “As soon as you let go of me, I can go figure out what's going on. All you're doing right now, is prolonging things.”
Nero thought for a second, then reluctantly released your hand. “I'll be waiting for you right here until then.”
“Thank you.” Stretching out your now sore hand, you sighed. “I'll be back as soon as I can.” With an honest smile, you turned away from Nero, leaving him nothing to do but trust that you would honor your promise.