Requests for the Mercenary is a quest in Chapter 8, "Budding Bodyguard", in Final Fantasy VII Remake. After Cloud Strife and Aerith Gainsborough rescue some children from danger, Oates tells Cloud there are several tasks around the Sector 5 Slums to complete.
Oates gives Cloud three sidequest: "The Mysterious Moogle Merchant", "Kids on Patrol", and "Weapons on a Rampage". The player can also talk to Chadley if they have not already for updates on Battle Intel objective, new materia (the Steal Materia is valuable if available) and the chance to fight Shiva to obtain the Shiva Materia; Cloud should equip the Fire Materia, which can be paired with Elemental Materia to improve his normal attacks, while he focuses on casting Fire or Fira to stagger Shiva while dodging her attacks. Aerith should simply stay in the back and dodge while casting magic from a distance. Either can equip Ifrit Materia to help with the battle significantly. If the player did not already do so, the Revival Materia can be purchased from a materia vendor. The tracks "Costa del Sol", "Tango of Tears" and "Gold Saucer" are available from the materia vendor, the weapons store vendor, and the moogle emporium, respectively.
The sidequests that follow alter both affection mechanics for Chapter 14, "In Search of Hope", and dress mechanics for the following chapter, "The Town That Never Sleeps". How many sidequests are completed alters options for Aerith later.
Between the three sidequests, "The Mysterious Moogle Merchant" is the simplest by far, and can be completed within the children's secret hideout. Doing so allows useful items to be purchased from him with moogle medals, including the Silver Staff for Aerith, the graveyard key required for a later sidequest, some accessories, and items that can increase a characters' weapon skill points. "Kids on Patrol" and "Weapons on a Rampage" are combat quests (although "Kids on Patrol" begins with a non-combat objective) that both unlock further sidequests; "Kids on Patrol" unlocks "A Verified Hero", a minigame quest, while "Weapons on a Rampage" unlocks "Paying Respects", a combat quest. Completing "Kids on Patrol" will also unlock "The Angel of the Slums", a combat quest, when the party returns to the kids secret hideout and is approached by Oates.
After heading west to Leaf House, the Housemother will talk to Aerith and tell her that she has seen someone near her house. Heading to Aerith's house at any point continues the main scenario, though it is best to simply complete all sidequests first. On the way to her house, Rude appears, commencing a boss battle against him. To prepare, equip Cloud or Aerith with a Wind Materia. Giving Aerith a Healing Materia will also help.
Rude attacks swiftly, and his attacks must be guarded against. He can inflict Sleep from range, which must be dodged as the effect can effectively remove the afflicted character from battle for its duration. Rude's Haymaker will knock a character back even while guarding. He can also use Seize or Running Tackle to grab a character for a minute, which, if not guarded against or dodged, will allow him to stun them or throw them at the other, damaging both characters.
Cloud should engage Rude in close combat, guarding often and attacking after finishing, while Aerith remains in the back. Rude resists magical damage, though Aero and Aerora can be useful, dealing decent damage and making him vulnerable temporarily, and Fira is an acceptable substitute. Staggering Rude is also important to get in damage.
After losing a third of his HP, Rude can use Shockwave, a ranged attack that will follow a character and should be guarded against. Spinning Axe Kick will need to be dodged by rolling several times to evade it. As before, Aerith should stay in the back, firing at Rude, healing Cloud every so often, while Cloud guards his attacks and then attacks when Rude is exposed.
After Rude is defeated, return to Aerith's house to complete the quest. While there, "The Language of Flowers" takes place in a short detour. Finally, head to her house to complete the quest. Aerith will question if Cloud is finished; if there are no more sidequests to do, select "Yeah". to finish. After a cutscene, "The Price of Strength" begins.
Hard mode tips
Against Rude, pairing wind materia with Elemental Materia on Cloud improves his attacks, and with MP Absorption Materia on Aerith allows her to cast more often. Rude uses Sweet Dreams to put a character to Sleep before immediately attacking, so spells should not be cast while he is using this or Seize. After he uses it, Aerith can cast Aeroga while Cloud lays into him in Punisher Mode. Aerith can also use Ray of Judgment when Rude is staggered, or if she is low on MP. Many of Rude's abilities pierce Cloud's Counterstance, so he should instead use a mix of Focused Thrust, Triple Slash, and Blade Burst.
Defeating Rude grants Aerith the Telluric Scriptures Vol. IV.