Chapter Title: Epilogue
Warnings: See Chapter One
Disclaimer: See Chapter One
Author Note: Welcome all to the very last chapter -ever- of Innocence! I can't believe it's done! It's just... wow. It's actually finished! I'd say something meaningful but I really can't think. Anyways. I'd just like to thank EVERYONE who reviewed this story. You all made me keep on going and I love you ALL. I wish I could go around and hug you all but I can't afford the plane tickets.
And without Further Ado- the Epilogue of Innocence.
Kai started awake when Rei shook his shoulder gently. He looked up at the neko-jin eyes wide, before relaxing when he saw who it was. "Hey." He said tiredly.
"Hey." Rei replied, smiling. He leaned forward to kiss Kai gently on his forehead. "How are you?"
Kai looked down at the cast he was wearing. It had been a week since the cataclysmic events of Biovolt's so-called takeover.
Most of that night had become one big blur in Kai's memory, especially after Rei had left with Tyson and Max to fight the Biovolt guards. He could just remember this overwhelming sense of worry and then the wave of relief that he had felt when he had seen that Rei was all right. The doctors had said something about him passing out from exhaustion and stress. Kai knew how he must have felt. If he hadn't had a billion and one doctor's fussing around him and his various injuries he could have easily joined Rei in the land of the non-conscious.
After the doctors had finished treating him, he was free to go home. Instead, Kai had made his way straight to the room where Tala was and had yet to leave the seat beside the redhead's bed. "I've been better." He answered truthfully.
Rei nodded, understanding. "How's he doing?" He asked, looking across at the still figure in the bed.
"I think he's been better too." Kai told Rei, giving him a small smile. It turned out more like a grimace.
Rei sighed and looked down at his hands. It was his fault that Tala was in the state he was in now. He didn't understand why Kai didn't seem to see that. Instead of placing the blame squarely on him, where it belonged, Kai always seemed to know when Rei was getting down on himself and-
"Rei?" Kai asked gently, pulling the other boy down on to his lap and hugging him gently with his non-broken arm.
-Did something like that.
Rei leaned back against Kai and relaxed, feeling safe in the Russian's embrace.
Kai smiled and kissed Rei gently on the top of his head. "How's Ian?"
Before he had fallen into his coma, Tala had told Kai about the fate of his only other surviving team member. When the police had raided Biovolt's headquarters they had found the smallest member of the Demolition Boys still locked in his cell, he hadn't been fed for days and had been admitted to the intensive care unit of the hospital. Rei had taken the monitoring of Ian's condition as his own, personal, responsibility.
"He's getting better, physically at least. The doctors have been keeping him under sedation. They don't think he'll ever get completely better mentally, though."
Kai nodded silently. He hadn't really expected any better. This was Biovolt that they were talking about. Even knowing that still didn't make him feel any better. Ian's condition meant that the only survivors of Biovolt's World Champion team were an insane person who would never be able to care for himself ever again and a comatose teen that was predicted to have whatever organs that were still working shut down within the week.
Not the most positive prognosis.
A quiet chuckle from Rei brought Kai out of his musings. He looked down to see that Rei was tracing his fingers along the cast covering his left arm.
"Tyson and Max?" Rei asked, picking up Kai's arm to look at the other side of his now multi coloured cast.
Kai smirked. "Yeah. They came in after you left last night, armed with lots of different coloured permanent markers."
"And you didn't try to stop them?"
"I tried, I just overestimated how scary a glare from someone who not only is buggered but looks it is. They just laughed at me and set to work."
Rei raised an eyebrow. "And you let them?"
Kai shrugged. "I'm past the stage of caring. I think I fell asleep while they were still here."
Rei grinned and continued to read all of the random messages the two younger members of their team had written. There were a lot of 'Tyson heart's Maxi 4ever' and one 'Insert brain here' with an arrow pointing up to Kai's head. Rei guessed that that one was Tyson's handiwork also. The randomly placed butterflies and flowers seemed to be Max's doing.
"I can't believe you fell asleep! How much have you been sleeping lately?"
"Not a whole lot." Kai lifted up his arm to read his watch. "I just got in-" he did a double take. "TEN HOURS?"
Rei cackled at Kai's panicked expression. "Ten hours isn't that long, you know. Besides, you didn't miss anything important did you?"
Kai looked across at Tala and remembered exactly why he was there. He wasn't waiting for Tala's miracle recovery. He was waiting for his friend's death. "No… guess not." He said flatly.
Rei blinked at the change of mood. "Hey. Kai…" He said gently, bringing his hand up to cup the Russian's cheek. The bruise that Rei had caused had all but faded, giving Kai's cheek a greeny tinge. Rei ran his thumb over the site of the discolouration.
Rei couldn't think of anything to say to Kai. There was nothing he could say that could make his love feel any better. Tala was going to die and there was nothing anyone could do about it. All Kai could do to support his friend was to keep a vigil beside his bed waiting for the annoying blip of the heart monitor to become one very long, very annoying, bleep.
"I love you." Rei sighed and let his hand drop to rest on his own lap before leaning back against Kai and wriggling to get comfortable. Once he was satisfied that no part of his body was going to lose circulation, become numb and fall off he shut his eyes and began to doze off. Like Kai, he hadn't been able to get many hours sleep in the past week.
Kai smiled softly, looking down at Rei as the neko-jin's body began to relax completely. His words may not have helped the situation neither did they have the power to brig Tala back. But at least, on some level or another, they made Kai feel like he could deal.
He looked across at Tala again. The doctor's had all told him that there was no hope. Hell, Tala himself had told him there was no hope. And yet Kai hoped for a miracle. That some sort of miracle from God would bring his friend back.
He looked at Tala expectantly. Now would be a good time to make your melodramatic re-entry in the world in the style of a bad soap opera. He urged the redhead. Tala remained as still as ever.
Kai sighed. So much for that happy thought. He remembered Tala's last words to him.
"Tala?" Kai asked quietly.
Tala leant forward and began to whisper urgently in Kai's ear. "Kai, listen closely and carefully." Kai opened his mouth to speak." No. Don't speak, listen. I've got a whole lot to tell you and not a lot of time to tell you in." When Kai said nothing he nodded. "Good. The reason that we don't have that much time is because I'm about to collapse. There's nothing I can do about it and definitely nothing you can do about it. When I do I'm not waking up. I can't explain that much- it would take weeks. Biovolt enhanced my body to beat the Bladebreakers in the Worlds- the thing that they didn't tell me was that the things that they did to me fed off me. So every time I used my abilities I was eating away a part of myself. Ask Dizzi about it. She knows."
Tala's grip tightened on Kai's shoulder as he struggled to keep his eyes open. "Now the important stuff. Tahlia showed me a video with my team on it. They're all gone except for Ian. He's in the headquarters of Biovolt. Please find him and look after him. They've done something to him. I don't know what. Just look after him. Rei should be able to show you where he is."
Kai looked up and over at Rei, still listening to what Tala said intently. The redhead winced as a pain shot through his body. "He was the reason that you rejected me, wasn't he?" Tala asked.
Kai nodded almost imperceptibly. Tala gave him a half smile. "I'm happy for both of you. It's good that you found each other. I know that it'd probably make it easier for you if I told you that I hated that you two were together and that you should be with me but I don't think that. Don't get me wrong, I still love you. I always will. But Rei needs you. He needs you to help him. He's about to go and face a whole lot of questions and anger and he needs someone to be able to help him. You're that someone. He loves you more than anything. Look after him."
Tala leaned back away from Kai's ear and smiled at him, his eyes betraying none of the fear that he felt at facing the unknown. "I love you. Look after him." He mouthed to Kai before leaning in again and kissing the bluenette gently on his cheek.
His body followed in his movement as the last fleeting moments of consciousness left it and Tala slumped against Kai.
A long loud beeping noise filled the room, bringing Kai back to reality. He blinked, taking a moment to fully understand what the noise meant. So, it's over. He thought sadly, reaching over, without disturbing the slumbering Rei, to flick off the power switch of the heart monitor. It's finally over.
Kai sighed, looking again at the still redhead. Goodbye. He thought silently at his friend, hoping that wherever Tala was he could hear it.
Kai looked down at the sleeping Rei on his lap. He leant down to kiss the top of Rei's head and hugged him closer to his body, making Rei give a sleepy moan of protest. He smiled gently and loosened his hold on his lover, still keeping him close. You didn't need to tell me, Tala. I'll always look after him. Always.
And that's it. This definitely isn't the last you'll see of me though, I'll still be running around everywhere- and I have to begin writing Obsession - the creepy stalker Kai story! I hope you'll all read that too! So, for the final time! Please Tell me what you think.