Target 1: The Ninth

At the Vongola Headquarters, a certain swordsman and the Ninth boss of the Vongola were having a stare-off. The request had been made; the mission had been laid out. However, Squalo, whose loyalties practically made him have to cut the Ninth in half, was not very inclined to accept what had been asked of him. With a surprisingly analytical glare, Squalo pondered the Ninth's intentions.

Meanwhile, the Ninth had quite the innocent smile on his face as he stared at Squalo, one most people would be unable to resist. Even so, Squalo was a professional: he wouldn't fall for such things; if anything, that smile was annoying him further. Like Xanxus, Squalo thought the Ninth was completely unfit for ruling over the Vongola so, whatever kid he'd choose would never, ever be worthy of the title of Vongola Tenth. "What if I refuse?" Squalo asked, careful not to tread into a situation that would condemn the Varia.

"Well, that would most likely give the whole family mixed signs, wouldn't you think so? The Varia is suspected enough already," the Ninth calmly said, "Wouldn't you like to make up to that by contributing to its future?" The old man was surely convincing, though that hadn't been unexpected of him. Unfit or not, he had become the boss of the mafia for a reason... Beyond having been the only one available at the time with Vongola Blood.

... Which, apparently, some brat also happened to have. Tsunayoshi Sawada was his name. Immediately, Squalo traced that surname back to the head of the CEDEF, Iemitsu Sawada; no wonder he had been chosen. Supposedly, he was a descendant of the First boss of the Vongola, so it made sense that his son could be picked out, as there was no other heir to the Ninth.

After all, Xanxus did not possess the Vongola Blood; that was a fact Squalo (and only Squalo out of the whole Varia) was aware of. While Squalo wanted to refuse badly, the Ninth did have a point: refusing could cause the Varia to be seen as even more clearly against the Ninth than they already were, and the Ninth could finally see to it the Varia disbanded, removing any advantage the group would have had against the Vongola. Besides, Squalo was being given a chance to be constantly near one of Xanxus' most important obstacles, which was Tsunayoshi Sawada, and use him as he saw fit to aid Xanxus' rise to power. Like the saying, it would definitely be convenient to have his enemy closer to him...

"Hmph, fine!" Squalo ultimately exclaimed, unable to mask some of the displeasure that'd come with the Ninth's undeniable offer. Though, with his own plans for the mission, he could make sure to get back at the old man for his insolence once Xanxus was out of the ice, so that was at least something to look forward to. "Consider that mission accepted! Just don't go complaining to me if the candidate doesn't manage to keep up with my training!"

It didn't, however, ease the blow of having to move to a remote town in Japan and tolerate some random brat for an indefinite amount of time, and he was left momentarily considering how hard Xanxus would have thrown the nearest object at him had he witnessed Squalo now.

Author's Notes:

As of now, since I've edited this for some slight re-writes and to make the Author's Notes shorter, I'll only allow myself five sentences of commentary in all Author's Notes. Unlike my other stories, there are no First Words because there's no actual need for them: favorite and follower counts will be addressed here, and guest reviews will stay at the top, but anything that needs to be said to everybody in general is here. With that in mind, the basis for this story is actually another story with more or less the same premise (except it's Mammon) that I'm also planning on doing a few re-writes before starting it over, and while I didn't want to bother writing a whole other story over it, I didn't manage a one-shot so I figured I could just make it shorter and less serious to compensate. This means that at least almost all chapters will be kept under 1000 words, so look forward to that?