I honestly don't know what inspired this. I was walking to work one day, and next thing I know I was scribbling furiously and barking at the damn phone every time it rang. =P Anyway, this kinda follows my theory that Kain knew from the beginning where throwing Raziel into the Abyss would lead. For some reason I always found the idea that he would do it just because he was having a bitchy day a little hard to swallow. ^_~

And, uh…this kinda inspired an idea for a larger story arc, called Vita et Mortis, so…I imagine there will be more of these popping up soon enough.

Disclaimer: The Legacy of Kain series belongs, in no way, shape or form to me. We all knew this though, didn't we? *gives everyone a cookie* No harm intended, just a little bit of…fun? O.o;;

One last thing…I know Kain couldn't possibly know Latin. Seeing as Nosgoth isn't earth and all…I know this, but it just seemed…appropriate, so he does. Deal with it. Lol…=P

I'm also not anything remotely resembling fluent in Latin, so if there are any mistakes in my translations, feel free to correct me. ^^

Vita et Mortis - Of Life and Death
Defluo - to be lost
Mei amor - My love

~*~Vita et Mortis: Defluo~*~

I've finally decided that I will never understand you, Kain. Perhaps it is merely our great differences that make your motives alien to me, or perhaps I am just too simple a man to comprehend the great scope of your desires. Whatever the reason, I no longer care.

I am tired Kain. So very tired. The fire fueled by blind hatred and a desire for revenge has burned itself out, leaving me spent, the barest shadow of my former self.

Sighing, I looked around at my bleak surroundings with little interest. The tainted reality of the spectral realm was desolate, deserted; not even a sluagh shuffling about in the shadows. Silence. The deep, impenetrable silence of death, making my thoughts all the louder in my mind.

I did not want to think. My memories were like a terrible poison, slow, insidious, and too painful to bear. However, I needed rest, and drained as I was I could not hope to return to the material realm. So I would rest, and so the memories would come, just as they always did in quiet moments like this.

Lying back, I pillowed my head on an arm and stared up at the stagnant sky. It reminded me of myself after a fashion, forever frozen in a cruel mockery of life. Shaking the troublesome notion away, my thoughts turned back to Kain. At least now I understood, to some extent, the reason for his treachery.

I shivered at the sensation of dangerous claws trailing gently over sensitive membranes, the tickle of Kain's breath on my neck, the low rumble of his voice in my ear as he spoke. It was a strange moment, as though time itself had slowed to a crawling pace, and try as I might, I could not seem to draw breath.

"I am truly sorry, mei amor, but what must be done…must be done. Forgive me."

After that, there was nothing but pain. The pain of delicate bones being torn from my back, the pain of tumbling through the Abyss, flesh melting away, poised forever on the verge of death, but never released.

These were nothing however, not compared to the greater pain in my heart. The pain of being betrayed by the man I had devoted my life to. Kain was my lord, my creator, and my loyalty to him was boundless. I would have gladly died for him had he commanded it…and he had tossed me aside like so much garbage.

Loath though I am to admit it, this whole sorry chase was little more than a rash reaction to hurt feelings. Like a spoiled child, I had acted out against that which had hurt me, and not once did I stop to consider it may have hurt Kain just as badly.

Kain was not a cruel man. He was strong, vicious, and brutally efficient. He ruled the Clans with an iron fist, but always fairly, and always with his own particular sense of justice. I had been with him since the dawn of the Empire, and never once had I seen him act in unnecessary cruelty.

Which I think only made me feel the sting of betrayal all the more.

Kain looked up as I entered the room, eyes appraising. We regarded each other wordlessly for a moment, before he raised one eyebrow in silent question.

"They're dead," I said, dropping down at his feet. "All of them." I leaned against the tempting warmth of his leg, resting my head on his thigh. I felt numb. So tired. There had been nearly twenty vampire hunters, and it had not been easy. I was injured, I knew, but at that moment, I just did not care. I simply wanted to rest.

I felt Kain begin stroking my hair, and I closed my eyes, relaxing against him and purring a bit at the pleasant sensation. There was a low, throaty chuckle, at my reaction most likely, but the stroking didn't stop, and so I didn't care.

"I could have helped you, you know."

I smiled, but did not open my eyes. "It is my duty to protect you."

"Why? Because I created you?"

"No…because I could not live without you."

Kain was silent a moment, his hand stilling in my hair. A few heartbeats passed, and I felt a gentle touch on my cheek. "And what if you were to be killed?"

"If I died for you, then I would do so with no regrets," I said truthfully.

"Ah…but what makes you think I could live without you, mei amor?"

Kain had found it. His coin's edge, the third option where none should exist. All tied into my life. It was still dizzying, the ramifications of it all. It meant that perhaps, Kain had known all along. I had no way of knowing what secrets Kain had uncovered in the Chronoplast, but in our confrontation there, he had seemed to know so much more than he revealed. All through our merry little chase, he had dropped bits and pieces of information, as if he had before him a vast picture, and was revealing it to me little by little.

I wanted to believe that. I wanted to believe Kain had known…that he would not have done this to me without what he thought was good reason. His words…before he shattered my world…it was as if he already knew. There had been regret, a deep sorrow in his voice that at the time I did not understand.

It helped to think so, if only a little. It helped to ease the agony in my heart, to think that Kain had done this to me because he felt he had to. I had been so blinded in the beginning, so angry that he would betray me so. I could not think clearly, and the words of that parasite had served only to fuel my anger.

Kain…he had needed that, though. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that Kain's every word and action had served only to bring us to this point. He needed my anger, because without it, I would not have been driven to do what I had done. I would have strayed from the path Kain needed me to follow, though to what end I could not even begin to guess.

Such a child I have been. It must have shamed you to see me behave so. I should have trusted you, and perhaps I would not have lost you. I needed you Kain.

I turned my head slightly, a spreading warmth along my back telling of Kain's proximity. He laid his hands on my arms, staring over my shoulder at the sprawling lands of my Clan holding, bathed in nighttime shadows and dotted by distant lights, reminding me of the stars I had not seen in so long.

"Something troubles you," he said, and I could feel his breath on my cheek as he spoke.

I hesitated a moment, then leaned back against his chest. "I've just had far too much time to think lately, that's all. After that incident with Faral…"

Kain sighed, pressing a kiss to my temple. "Raziel…"

"You could have been killed! It was close Kain, and if he had killed you…" I trailed off, finding it difficult to speak around the sudden tightness in my throat. "What would I do if I lost you?"

I hated how I was acting. Like a frightened child seeking assurance that there were no monsters lurking beneath his bed. It was ridiculous. I was the first and greatest of Kain's lieutenants. During the war I had known no fear, leading our troops and fighting alongside them. These days were quieter, surely, but still I had a responsibility to my Clan, and while Kain ruled us all, he did not have to deal with the pressures of keeping a whole Clan in hand on a daily basis. I was a strong man, and a strong leader. A strong man reduced to crumbling at the merest thought of losing Kain. It was truly pathetic.

Kain moved his hands from my arms, wrapping them instead around my waist and pulling me closer. "You will not lose me, Raziel," he murmured in my ear.

"You can not be certain of that."

Putting one hand gently to my chest, claws barely grazing the skin, Kain said, "You will have me for all eternity, mei amor."

I closed my eyes, hating this weakness in myself. "Promise me?"

"I promise you, Raziel," he said, holding me tighter. "I am yours, mei amor…forever."

Always…you have been my greatest weakness. I always thought I could not live without you, and my actions now have proved it. Even in my anger, I followed you. Under the pretense of vengeance, to be sure, and perhaps for a while I could have even brought myself to kill you…but it was always you that drove me.

I needed you then, and I need you still. It shames me to admit it, but without you…I am lost. In love or in hatred, my driving force was always you, and I think I finally understand that I will never be free of you. My soul is yours just as it always was.

I stretched, and after a moment climbed slowly to my feet. I had wasted enough time here. I had to find Kain, to discover what changes to Nosgoth's history his coin's edge had made. I was tired, weary of this endless tale. I simply wanted to rest, but I was denied even that. I must continue forward, if only because it was the only thing I could do.

I will seek you out, Kain, because without you…I am lost.