Disclaimer: I don't own Rockman series.

Duty Alliance

Pre-read by Azn Girl132.

Summary:

Jasmine must marry in order to by pass a law which will render her poverty-stricken since she is too young to inherit anything. Her choice is her closest friend Netto. But if he accepts the proposal, can he love her so this is not a loveless marriage?

Chapter 1

It was another day after school when Netto was in the library doing homework for the first time in his life. Then his PET rang.

" You got mail," said the navi, Rockman.

"Who is it from?" asked Netto.

"It's from your pen pal, Jasmine. It looks very important," answered Rockman.

"Opened it," ordered Netto.

Dear Netto,

Something awful has happened! I need you to come. Netto, I feel so much pain. Please tell me that you will come. I don't know who else I can turn to. This feeling is so unbearable. My grandpa, no… I'll tell you as soon as I see you.

Please Netto, come as soon as you can. Please.

Jasmine

Netto read the letter twice before he integrated all the information. Something was wrong with her grandfather. This was not the cheerful Jasmine he knew. She needed him there now. So he had to take quick action.

"Rockman, make an email saying that I'm out for a while as if I am at a Net Savior mission," ordered Netto.

"Wait, you're not on one!" yelped Rockman.

"I know, but I have to make an excuse. My status as a Net Savior gives me a little edge on skipping school. Just say it's an important mission," answered Netto.

"But why?" inquired Rockman.

Netto stared at his navi as if Rockman was out of his mind.

"Don't you get it? This doesn't sound like Jasmine at all. Friends come first," said Netto.

"Even curry?" asked Rockman.

Netto thought for a moment until he answered, "Yeah, I always can eat curry any time but finding a good friend isn't."

Rockman was stunned by this new revelation. Netto for once in his life found something more important than curry. But his thought was interrupted.

"Were you able to finish the message?" asked Netto.

"Uh, not yet," replied Rockman.

"Tell Jasmine that we'll be coming as soon as we can," said Netto as he puts all his stuff in his backpack and left to his home.

"Got it," answered Rockman.

Netto's home

"Mama! I need your help!" yelled Netto.

"What is it Netto?" asked Hikari Haruka.

"I have a friend who is in trouble. I have to go see her as soon as possible. Can you cover me while I'm out for a few days?" asked Netto.

Haruka looked at her son. It seemed like yesterday that he grew up from a kid to a teen. He was slowly disengaging his bad habits such as waking up late or not turning in homework on time. But again, habits die hard. Haruka sighed. Netto used to be a school kid and now he got one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Perhaps it would do some good for him to get out of this hectic place for a few days.

"Yes I can, I'll use the same excuse. You're on a mission. Is that alright?" asked Haruka.

"Yeah that should be fine. I'll see you in a few days! Take care, Mama!" said Netto as he got up to his room to pack for the trip.

"Where are you going? Oh, don't forget your passport!" yelled Haruka.

"I'm going to Choina! Don't worry I got it!" Netto yelled back.

At the airport terminal

After a long flight to Choina thanks to his unlimited ride plane ticket, Netto had pondered many things what could have gone wrong that made his friend in distress. But in the end, he figured out it was best just to get the answers directly from Jasmine. After all, too much thinking can give a person a huge headache.

Taking a walk around hoping to find Jasmine, he finally spotted her sitting at a bench. But it was how he had hoped to meet her. Instead a cheerful person, there was a depressed Jasmine with her legs close to her chest and she was hugging them for comfort. Not only that, she was rocking back and forth. It was a very strange behavior. When he finally got her attention, she acted out of character.

"Oh Netto, it's horrible!" sobbed Jasmine as she went and hug him.

Netto did not know really what to do except to hug her back.

"Hey Rockman, ask Medi about the situation," requested Netto.

"Hey Medi do you know what is going on?" asked Rockman to Jasmine's navi.

"It's better to tell you at the hospital. I don't want people to get into private affair," said Medi as she bit her lip.

Rockman nodded and told his operator.

"Poor Jasmine, the last time she acted like this was when her parents died. I wish I could comfort her…" murmured Medi. Rockman heard her but didn't say anything. It wasn't his right to ask about the past.

At the hospital

Netto look intently at Jasmine's grandpa after hearing what the bad news was. His response was to the point.

"You're dying?"

Jasmine's grandpa nodded his head at Netto's question.

"Yes, I was in that building where the medical convention was held. Suddenly there was a terrorist attack in which they managed to swipe data of the newest medical advancement, including mine."

"So the data is the problem then? I don't think that would shake your granddaughter up that bad nor it explains about your future death," said Netto.

"Well hold on, you need to hear the boring part first before going into the good part. But you are correct that is not the really problem. You see these terrorists released nerve gas."

"Nerve gas?" inquired Netto.

"I heard a drop of nerve gas can kill a person within five minutes," exclaimed Rockman.

"Yes, nerve gas is a type of chemical agent designed to attack the human nervous system. Nerve gas works by blocking the body's production of an enzyme called cholinesterase. This allows the neurotransmitter acetylcholine to build up in the body. When this happens, muscles contract but cannot relax. Victims suffer from headaches, runny nose, narrowing of the pupils, and a tightened chest. If a person is exposed to a lethal dosage, uncontrollable muscle contractions occur and quickly lead to death by asphyxiation," recited Medi from the medical achieves.

"Wait, but you're still alive," said Netto to Jasmine's grandpa.

"Yes, that's true, but we're going off track though. The doctors give everybody who lived through the attack a year to live, at the most. But it could be sooner for me since I'm so old and weak. As of today, Jasmine will be too young to inherit anything and everything I own will go to the government according to a certain law. The only way to get around that law is for Jasmine to marry someone. I asked her to find a benevolent boy to get engaged to and to marry him before I die."

After some thinking, Netto realized the true reason why he was called here. He turned to the Asian girl who was his friend for some time.

"So you must have chosen..."

"Yes, Netto, I have chosen you. You are the only boy I know who is kind enough to help others in need. The first time we met, you helped me to find a particular flower even though you didn't need to. Later at the same day when I was kidnapped, you put yourself in danger in order to save me from the mafia even if you didn't know me well enough. No other people whom I have met were willing to aid me when I needed the most. You even saved my home from a raid the second time we have met. From all of the letters that you have sent to me and what I sent to you, we probably know each other better than anyone else. As we have been exchanging letters, I somehow have grown to love you. Will you accept?" asked Jasmine.

Netto could see the fear that was eminent in her eyes. He knew that she was putting all of her hope into him. He was the trump card, the last resort. Netto knew what he had to do.

"I…

End of Chapter 1

Author's notes:

Yes, I know I am evil, leaving a cliffhanger like that.

Now I need your help. What do you think is the most realistic answer for anybody to say?

If I said yes, it would be too cliché

If I said no, it would defeat the purpose of the story.

So can you help me plz?