I really do enjoy exploring this trope.
There was something odd about Tsunayoshi. Reborn had read the reports that Iemitsu had provided him. While he didn't outright say it, Reborn knew that Iemitsu was disappointed that his son had, in Iemitsu's own words, 'turned out strange'.
Strange was a nice way to put it. Just after a few days of observing Tsuna, Reborn had a long list of things that were just plain not right. Some he wasn't even sure he could fix.
Tsuna was slow. Reborn wasn't sure if it was result of a mental condition; the boy's grades were immensely poor and showed a lack of understanding. But the way Tsuna reacted was slow too. As if he was put on slow motion and everyone else was functioning at normal speed. He walked slowly, like he was counting his steps. A few bullies confronted him and Tsuna simply didn't react to their jabs or punches, until later when he was wincing as he bandaged himself up. He ate slowly, each bite carefully blown on (no matter how hot or cold) before eaten. He was never the first to cross a street, never first to reach for something even when he was in front of everyone else. He never looked anyone in the eye either.
Then there was Tsuna's reaction to the truth about Vongola and the reason why Reborn was here. It was the only time Reborn had observed Tsuna moving fast.
Reborn hadn't even gotten Nono's name out of his mouth before Tsuna snapped to attention and threw the pillow he had been clutching at Reborn. "No! No! No!"
Tsuna was out the door before Reborn could stop him. Reborn let it go, adjusting the training schedule he had made to include a punishment for throwing the pillow at him. A silly tantrum. Not wanting to hear the truth wouldn't change it.
Reborn quickly followed after him, already readying a Dying Will Bullet. He found his student waving hello to one Sasagawa Kyoko at the corner. The conversation was short lived as Tsuna waved goodbye, ushering Kyoko to go ahead of him.
"Is that the girl you have a crush on?" Reborn asked. The reports had said so. The only girl that Tsuna paid any real attention to, the only classmate that he held eye contact with.
Tsuna furrowed his eyebrows, focusing on his feet. "That's just Kyoko-chan," he said, not answering Reborn's question.
That was fine. Reborn would learn it through Tsuna's Dying Will.
He shot Tsuna in the forehead. A crest of orange Flames sprung to life where the bullet had hit Tsuna, but strangely there was no clothes bursting to pieces or shouts of regrets.
Instead Tsuna froze. His hands shook, trembling as he clenched and unclenched them. His eyes, now orange, were wide stunned beyond belief.
Reborn was mentally thrown. Hyper Dying Will Mode? Tsuna was maintaining Hyper Dying Will Mode after one bullet? That was supposed to be impossible!
The Flames died out. Tsuna sank to the ground, tears flowing down his face. "What did you do?" he croaked.
Reborn's mind raced, trying to figure out the implications. "That was a Dying Will Bullet. When someone 'dies' as a result of the Dying Will Bullet, any regret they have causes them to be reborn, capable of doing amazing feats."
Tsuna's eyebrows furrowed as he struggled to concentrated. Reborn could practically see the way he strained to string together his thoughts.
"Shoot me again," Tsuna ordered.
"But," Reborn started. Tsuna wasn't reacting as one normally would to Dying Will Bullets. It would be foolish to try again without discovering the cause.
"Again," Tsuna said. "Please."
There was desperation in his voice. Reborn looked at his student. There was something wrong here. Reborn was missing a piece of the puzzle and he didn't like it.
"Very well," Reborn said, readying Leon again. "Hold onto your regrets. You'll die without them." With the precision that had gotten him the title of World's Greatest Hitman, he shot Tsuna point blank in the forehead without any hesitation.
This time an entire sea of orange Flames engulfed the area. Reborn shielded his eyes as the Sky Flames washed over him, warm and inviting. It danced, like a gleeful child greeting a long-lost parent. So, it wasn't a fluke. Tsuna was holding Hyper Dying Will Mode.
Tsuna looked down at his hands, currently lit with Sky Flames. Slowly he closed his fists, extinguishing the Flames on his hands, but not on his forehead. Then he let out a bitter and dark laugh. "This was what missing," Tsuna said, pressing his hand to his face. "This is what they sealed away eight years ago."
Reborn's blood ran cold. No. Sealed away? Timoteo wouldn't have. Reborn wouldn't wished the sealing of one's Flames on anyone. Death was a far kinder option and eight years ago Tsuna would have been a civilian child. Mafiosos or not, there were lines that you didn't cross. Sealing Flames was one, much less sealing flames of a child. Why would have Timoteo sealed Tsuna's Flames?
He drew in a sharp breath when he remembered eight years ago, all of Timoteo's sons were alive and well. As Primo's direct descendant, Tsunayoshi held the larger claim to Vongola if he had wished to claim it, despite being a civilian. Instead of killing Tsunayoshi, Timoteo handicapped the direct heir to ensure his sons would inherit.
Except now only the direct heir was left.
Forget training Tsunayoshi to be Decimo. Reborn would have to fix the fallout of Timoteo sealing Tsuna's Flames first, assuming it could even be fixed. Timoteo had fucked up.
"What did you lose, Tsuna?" Reborn asked. Sealing affected everyone differently, but they always lost something, a part of them that made them fundamentally them.
Tsuna looked at him, orange eyes clear and focused for the first time since they had met. "Everything."
"Due to him accessing his Hyper Intuition from a young age, Tsuna's mind reacts horribly to his sky flames being suppressed by the 9th as a small child resulting in a mental shock that sends him into a coma. When he wakes up, he is left with a deeply rooted phobia of the 9th and shattered trust in his own father, while each of his other senses affected by the suppression as well. His sense of touch is affected in that while his nerves can pick up on physical sensation, he can't feel pain, pleasure, or temperature. His sense of Smell and Taste are weakened to the point that they can only pick up on strong scents and flavors - leaving most things bland. His sense of Sound is affected in that his inner ear and direction interpretation are disoriented. This affects his balance while also making it difficult to understand in what direction a sound is coming from, with louder or echoing sounds seeming to come from all directions. His sense of Sight is affected in that he becomes entirely color blind. He can only see in shades of gray. He remembers what his senses are like - what they were supposed to be like. What he doesn't know is how to explain that another sense is missing – the one he used to understand the world around him. He doesn't know how to explain that this is the sense that that scares him the most to have lost."
I may come back to explore this plunny more later, but for now that's all I have for this.
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