Title: Justified

Rating: T

Area: Tragedy

Sage stood soaked ankle deep in tainted blood from a thousand souls. It was odd to her because none of it was her blood nor had she spilt it. Yet it was warm and within the warmth she could still feel the pulsing of the hearts each bit of blood once belonged to. This was probably the curse of being a half demon to be able to sense such delicate things. Sage had felt it before and yet it still unnerved her to be feeling it now. Wading her way through the sea of deep red the rippling trail faded behind her as she passed the fallen bodies to a single white raising platform opening with blood splattered marble steps and leading to the flat rising where a throne sat draped in black velvet cushions and deep royal purple silk blankets and curtains. This was all surrounded in a draping of white satin that an average kept the figure silhouetted but at this time was opening revealing the creature that had caused such a disaster. She sat in the throne sprinkled in blood as if she were born to be there. Her brown hair came a few inches past her shoulder and her eyes which were once gentle and full of laughter now reflected the hate and the blood she had spilt. Her gown, a soft purple, lay delicately passed her feet but it was still simple to see her black ballet-like slippers stained by large splashes of blood. And the sword , the once silver sword that she had once held in her hand as a us of protection now lay at her feet stained in crimson from the tip to the handle. This beings name had once been Aeris, but Sage wasn't sure if this being was her anymore.

"What have you done?" An obviously foolish question but Sage felt it had to be asked.

Aeris laughed, "I've obtained my victory. They all had it coming anyway, I have preformed no crime."

"No crime? What have these people done wrong?" Sage felt her voice rise and fall with the anger welling up within her.

Angry grin and a raised brow of annoyed amusement "They acted beyond my control." Her head tilted back and her eyes closed as if she were remembering "Each one of them claimed to be so close to me, my friend, my BEST friend. Yet they couldn't cut it. They didn't understand the responsibility of being my friend and they betrayed me. By my law, betrayal is a crime punishable by death, so I took the burden upon myself to make the executions. If nothing else they should be thanking me. It could have been so much worse. And I almost got them all, but…" Her words faded away.

"What?" Sage's eyes narrowed with angry curiosity.

Aeris opening her eyes and her head fell back into its tilted position looking straight at Sage. "You're still alive. You haven't paid for your crime."

Sage instinctively shifted into a defensive position, her clenched fists ignited into electric energy.

Aeris stood for the first time, knelt down for the sword, than lazily began to walk down the blood spattered steps, sword dragging behind her clanking noisily as it fell from step to step. But the clanking stopped when she reached the middle step. Sage tightened up, confused from the sudden halt of action. Aeris looked in a daze for a second than she disappeared in a blur.

"UH-HU!" Sage gasped, not having time to be surprised.

Aeris stood with her right shoulder to Sage's right shoulder, her right hand resting on Sage's left shoulder. Aeris leaned in, her lips a simple inch from Sage's ear.

"You should have suffered the most." The breath past through Aeris' lips into Sage's ear in the form of a whisper. "I should have torn you apart piece by agonizing piece, making you scream and cry wishing that death would take you quickly. You would curse your life, regretting every breath you took while each second went by as if it were an eternity of your soul burning in the fiercest pits of Hell. I should have destroyed you." Her whisper stopped as she slid the sword out of Sage's flesh, blood spilling from the fresh wound in her back and she stepped back.

Sage fell to her hands and knees. A bubble of blood swelled up her throat and burst in her mouth spraying out through her clenched teeth. Every breath she took was a struggle, an attempt to hold onto her slipping life.

"I… did nothing…" She gasped through her blood filled throat, the blood staining her teeth pink and dripping down her lip into the pool of blood. "All I did was," Another bubble of blood spilt from her quivering lips. "Try to protect you." Sage's right arm gave out and slipped away causing her face to fall inches from the pool, her mid-back length hair becoming soaked and sticky with the ooze.

Aeris knelt in front of Sage's coughing and quivering body, her eyes becoming soft as she placed her finger under Sage's blood stained chin and leaned her face up to face hers. They were eye to eye, Sage's in a pained shock, Aeris' in a kind grin.

"Than think of this as you protecting me from yourself."

Sage closed her eyes in a painful defeat and gave into the lose of strength. Falling to the side she became half submerged in the red sea. Her last breath came out in a surge of bloody bubbles.

"But was it justified?..."

Aeris looked down at the being who had once been her closest friend and was now a drained, soulless shell devoured by nameless blood. "No," She blankly noted "No it was not."