After nearly two years of collective creativity, the story our RP has laid down so far is a long one indeed. So, for the purpose of clarity, I've done my best to condense it all down as much as possible, and divide it into categories I like to think of as Chapters. So far, my count gives the RP four chapters- two completed, one in progress, and one still to be seen.
.: Chapter One- Rough Beginnings
FF: Separate Story (also called Second Story) begins as the story of three characters- Kett Talinar, a dark and foreboding man with a clouded past; Ezri DeGalle, a weapon shop owner clawing out a life in the Midgar slums; and Skye Valgarde, an arrogant, confident rebel who seems to have no concern for the consequences of his actions. The three meet in Ezri's shop in Sector Four. Kett has taken refuge there from... well, the world in general, apparently; Skye comes in search of a bomb big enough to, "say, take out a Mako Reactor." The recent Sector 7 Massacre is still fresh in all their memories, and it seems that Skye has plans to make Shinra pay even if it costs him his life in the attempt. Fortunately for him, his two new acquaintances both have their own reasons to hate Shinra, and decide they want in on the raid. (The Party is formed.) From here on out, the three begin a guerilla lifestyle inspired by the recent actions of the "AVALANCHE" group, doing their best to be a thorn in Shinra's side at every opportunity. During this time, though, each of the three still learns very little about the other two- their motives, and especially, their pasts. The three heroes-in-making all have their own skeletons in the closet: Kett is an ex-SOLDIER Elite and an escapee from Shinra's horrific bio-weapons research division... and what's more, he's a CETRA! Ezri has a history with Shinra herself, the daughter of two Shinra Turks. When they refused to coerce her into joining the Turks, they and her brother Jakob were all murdered by Shinra's newest Turk recruit, one Reno Murphy. Skye's background is perhaps the most despicable, for his dark secret is one that he hasn't yet left behind. Both Kett and Ezri are wanted by Shinra, and when they both show up in the same place the opportunity was too much for Shinra to pass up. Calling on the elite of their elite, Pres. Shinra ordered in an operative from the company's rarely mentioned Department of Counter-Insurgency, known as the "Infiltrators"- a cadre of assassins, their skills honed to the bleeding edge, who are trained to infiltrate trouble-making groups like AVALANCHE, gain their trust, and when the time is right, "finalize" their targets. That operative was Spec. Ops Lieutenant Skye Valgarde. Stepping out of the story, this shortest of the four chapters mainly serves as a prelude, telling of the beginnings of three strong friendships and the events that set these three freedom fighters up to be in the center of a conflict that would later shatter almost everything they knew and threaten the life of the very Planet itself, even after the Meteor crisis had passed.
.: Chapter Two- The Second Story
This chapter, the product of about a whole year's worth of role-playing, introduces new friends, new enemies, and a growing good-vs.-evil conflict of earth-shattering proportions. As they alternate attacking and running from Shinra's forces, first in a stolen Shinra chopper and later in an equally-stolen Shinra Airship, lovingly dubbed the "Nameless," the group meets new friends and begins to see clues of the big picture, the greater story that is developing around them. First to join is a smug 19-year-old mercenary named Cyruss KalÚnt, who offers to share the last room in Kalm's inn with the weary group if they'll agree to sign him on as a salary contract. Although his uncanny skill at being a smartass causes some friction with the other groupmembers at first, the group deals with him because of his equally uncanny affinity with anything electronic. It isn't long before the tech-wiz finds himself a full-fledged member of the party and not just a "hired gun." The second of the party's new allies is Ara Tahnika, a crack-shot and ace pilot with a knack for machinery. Her heart still aches over the loss of her squadron mates, killed in a Shinra set-up from which she was the only survivor, and so when the group meets her on a trip into Rocket Town for Airship parts, she is more than glad for the chance of revenge. There's more to Ara than meets the eye, though... She knows nothing outside of her life in Rocket Town and her Shinra employment before that, and admits to having no memory of her past. One day, one of her friends spots a Roman-numeral tattoo on her shoulder and the group's unspoken suspicions are confirmed- Ara is a Sephiroth clone. She remains clueless to her origins until Skye finally breaks it to her; it's a crushing revelation, and one that she will spend much time coming to grips with.