Title: Death and Rebirth
Author: ficeler37
Note: Don't own Claymore.
Rating: PG
Word count: 659

Summary: Clare's POV. What happens after Clare talks to the man from the organization at the end of the Teresa arc.

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A rather empty yet spacious room with no windows. The only thing emitting light is a long stem candle placed on a small wooden table in the center of the room. And on that same table, there lies the meaning of my life … the only being in my reality … Teresa …

"My name is Setsu, and I will be overseeing your transformation today. I have to warn you. Once the ritual begins with the intake of the demon blood, you will die …"

Dying is a risk that I'm willing to take. If I don't make it, big deal, I already feel dead. But if I do …

"Trust me, it is better this way, for the pain of incorporating demon flesh into your body is enough to shatter the human mind. When the procedure is over, you will be reborn as what the world calls a Claymore, but only … if your will to live is strong enough. Many weaklings before you were not able to bounce back from the state of a lifeless corpse, heh heh …"

Teresa, give me strength … to become like you …

"Now that we have an understanding, any last requests before we commence?"

"May I hold her head?"

The masked man dressed in a black robe picks up a silver platter on the table and walks towards the metallic bed that I'm sitting on. I sigh in relief. Someone must have heard my silent prayer. I didn't want anyone's hand to touch Teresa.

I run my fingers through her beautiful silver curls. I chuckle. Teresa would have given me a spanking if I touched her hair like that under normal circumstances.

I bend down and kiss those cold yet soft lips. For a second, I have the illusion of Teresa kissing me back. The thought makes my heart flutter. As the man in black walks towards me again with the silver platter, I gently place her down, stroking the smooth tresses one last time.

In my last moment as a complete human being, I wish to fill my mind with thoughts of you, Teresa. Memories of our time spent together. Dreams of the time we will never share.

I love you, Teresa.

"Drink up, little girl."

He holds up a golden cup with blood red liquid swirling inside. I take the cup and look down at my reflection cast on the ruby-colored surface. I guess the next time I see my reflection, I will look different … Teresa, after my transformation, will you still find me adorable if I put on the outfit you bought me in town?

From now on, I will bury my love for you deep inside me and devote the rest of my life to avenge your death. I remember what humanity can do to a warrior. How can I forget? That's how I lost you. Till the day when I murder the monster that took you away from me, I shall close my heart to the outside world.

"What's with the hesitation? Don't tell me you're having second thoughts."

I glare at the man with the residual venom conjured by the thought of Priscilla. How dare him question my resolve! I gulp down the fiery hot liquid in one swallow.

Beyond the distinctive taste of copper is a sweetness that I cannot describe. Nothing like the sweetness of honey or any other earthly sustenance, it is the kind of sweetness that wraps around my being and calms my soul. It is the feeling of falling asleep next to your warm body, Teresa …

Then … I hear the sound of metal colliding with the cement floor.

"May you have sweet dreams, Clare."

My life didn't flash before my eyes as my eyelids grow heavy and start to block off the dim candle light. But right before I'm surrounded by absolute darkness, I saw a glorious glow of silver. I smile.

Teresa … Teresa …