Title: So Cold

Media: Anime/Manga; Code: Lyoko

Genre: Tragedy/Angst

Disclaimer: Code: Lyoko belongs to MoonScoop and AnteFilms; So Cold belongs to Breaking Benjamin.

Summary: One by one, each of the Lyoko Warriors fall victim to their enemy. Until finally, only Odd is left. He now believes there truly comes a time when Nightmares Come to Life (part one).

A/N: Okay…I'm back, this time with part one of my three-part miniseries. Hope you like!

So Cold

Within the confines of an abandoned building, a fight was ensuing. It was midnight outside and the electricity was out, so without the moonlight filtering in through the shattered window it would be completely black inside one particular room.

The swordsman, who had brown hair and chocolate-colored eyes, swung one of his katanas at the black specter in front of him. The young adult barely escaped being tackled by one of the fog's tentacles and he swung both weapons at that tentacle.

The fog-like specter digitized, collecting itself in a heap on the concrete floor. Seconds later, it stretched up and took on a more solid form.

Brown eyes widened in surprise as they observed the new body of his opponent. "That is so not cool…" he whispered, gripping his swords tighter and drawing them close in a defensive posture.

"What, don't like my design?" it asked, giving a fanged grin. "It's based off of one of your friends." A low, dark chuckle resonated off the walls as the specter raised its arms and pointed long, solid-black slaws toward it's prey.

Crowded streets are cleared away

One by one

Hollow heroes separate

As they run

Rapid footsteps sounded off the asphalt road as three characters ran down a long, empty street. A fog had settled in, further giving the scenery a black-and-white horror film look.

At the front of the small group was a boy with cat-like ears, a long striped tail and paw-like hands. Behind him were two females, one clad all in black and the other in pink though the fog gave her uniform a grayish tint. The pink-clad girl had elf-like ears and a set of wings, though one of them was caked in blood and missing a few flight feathers otherwise. All three were panting hard, hinting that they had been running for a while.

The lone male's cat-like ears twitched and he bolted to the left, nearly leaving his other teammates behind. "We're getting closer," he called breathlessly over his shoulder.

This announcement served to give the two girls extra adrenaline, which helped them run faster. The dark-haired girl in particular seemed eager to arrive at their destination, onyx eyes sparking with anticipation.

Suddenly, an ear-splitting scream of pain echoed loudly throughout the whole street.

The feline-like boy stopped at an old factory and started messing with the knob. When the girls caught up, he growled angrily and clawed the door. "It's locked!"

"Let me try." The pink-haired girl stepped up and held her hand above the knob which started to glow.

The blonde-haired boy sighed impatiently. This is taking too long. Quickly looking around, he expertly leapt onto a small car, jumped into a tree and flew right through an already-shattered window.

"Got it!" she said victoriously as a 'click' was heard and the door swung inward. Both girls immediately ran into the building and, with the help of a glowing-pink orb that materialized in the elven-angel's hands, found a flight of stairs and quickly ascended the dust-covered steps.

At the top, they rushed into the room at the left and abruptly stopped. Their faces turned white when they saw the details of the room.

Dark splatters and streaks covered every wall of the concrete room, a large puddle of the crimson liquid surrounding a limp body. The blood cleverly coated the once brown-and-gold battle uniform of the brown-haired boy, two katanas neatly crossing each other on his chest.

Kneeling next to the body was the feline-like boy, one of his hands on the wrist of the fallen comrade. The black-clad girl hesitantly walked closer, her whole body trembling. "Is he…?"

Blue eyes turned up to onyx ones, sadness radiating from his gaze. "I'm sorry, Yumi…"

Yumi fell to her knees, tears streaming down her pale cheeks.

You're so cold

Keep your hand in mine

Wise men wonder why

Strong men die

On a grassy hill stood Yumi, the wind blowing roughly on her white dress and forcing her to bow here head to keep the white veil from flying away. In front of her were two fresh graves with their new headstones in place. One headstone read Ulrich Stern, brave warrior, trusted friend; the other read Jeremie Belpois, trusted scientist, beloved friend.

Yumi set a bouquet down on the grave of Ulrich, a single tear running down her pale face. "I'm sorry, Ulrich…"

Walking toward the graves was the pink-haired elf with wings, only instead of also wearing pink she wore a white dress and a white veil over her face. She too brought a bouquet of flowers, all varying shades of blue. Her injured wing was cleaned up to where the pinkish-white feathers gleamed in the bleak sunlight, though it remained unbandaged.

She stopped beside Yumi, delicately placing the flowers on Jeremie's grave.

The Japanese girl turned to look at the elven angel. "I thought you wore black at funerals here."

The other girl gave the first a small smile. "I like the Japanese custom of white better." She gently stroked the headstone of her beloved, tears beginning to form in emerald-green eyes. "I hope they make it up there…"

"They well," Yumi said softly, another tear rolling down her cheek. "I know they will."

The pink-haired girl leaned against the taller girl, one of her hands going up to the other girl's elbow. The dark-haired girl leaned her head on the smaller girl's head, more tears falling from onyx eyes.

Show me how we end

It's alright

Show me how defenseless

You really are

Satisfied yet empty inside

Well, that's alright

Let's give this another try

Yumi sat in a black leather chair, her white attire a large contrast to the rest of the room.

The room she currently was in had faded-yellow walls and a red leather sofa next to the chair, the carpet being a dull brownish color.

Sitting on the floor were the feline-like boy and the winged elf. Similar to the Japanese girl, they all had mournful expressions on their faces.

After a few seconds of silence, the purple-clad blonde sighed. "We can't keep doing this, guys."

The pink-haired girl looked blankly at him while the white-clad female didn't seem to hear him.

"I mean," he started in a low tone, "Ulrich wouldn't want us to cry over him." He gave Yumi a cautious look which was met with an attentive gaze. "And you remember what Jeremie used to say?" he added, giving the elf beside him the same look.

"'Don't cry over what's lost'," she whispered, tears materializing in her emerald eyes. "'And keep moving forward'."

"Then what do you want us to do?"

Emerald eyes and azure ones turned toward Yumi. Her voice was so soft they almost missed what she said.

Onyx locked onto azure. "Well, Odd?"

The cat-like boy, now addressed as Odd, looked at the carpet in thought.

The dark-haired girl leaned forward slightly. "Do you know what I think?"

Odd flinched inwardly at the icy undertone that the elf clearly missed. Azure eyes turned upward and cat-like ears flattened against blonde hair. God, no…

"What do you think we should do?"

He gave the pink-clad girl a sharp look. Don't encourage her!

Too late. Yumi was now standing up, her eyes hard. "I think we should avenge their deaths."

Bright green eyes widened in alarm and a startled gasp escaped her lips.

He closed his eyes and slowly shook his head. "And what will that accomplish?"

"It doesn't matter!" she yelled, hands clenching into tight fists and tears forming in onyx eyes. "They didn't deserve to die," she said in a quieter tone, her voice breaking. "And I can't stand by a second longer while that beast roams free!"

In one swift motion, Odd stood up and stepped in front of her. Azure and onyx bore deep into each other, one trying to subdue the other.

The winged elf, afraid that her friends would begin to fight, rose to her feet and placed her hands on his shoulder and forearm. Gave him a pleading look when he glanced in her direction.

Yumi then turned to the other female. "Are you with me, Aelita?"

Pinkish-white wings fluttered helplessly as Aelita the elf found herself needing to choose between them. Letting go of Odd, she stepped back, slowly shaking her head. "I-I don't know…"

When you find your family

Don't you cry

In this land of make-believe

Dead and dry

Odd walked down the almost-white hallway, seeming lost in thought. Although he stood straight and walked with dignity, his azure eyes were distant. Cat-like ears twitched and he sidled to the side as he nearly ran into a table. Glaring at the wooden object, he muttered, "Who put that there…?"

It was at that moment that he noticed a neatly-folded piece of paper. He could faintly see the handwriting through the paper and recognized it as Yumi's.

His curiosity freshly sparked, he tentatively picked it up. Rubbed his thumb over the folded ends as he decided whether to read it or not. Shrugging, he opened it up.

Dear Diary,

I know it's been awhile since I've made any notes, but I've been a little busy with missions lately.

But a few weeks ago, me fiancé was killed during one of our missions. According to The Code, "When the Alpha Warrior expires, the Beta Warrior takes his/her place". Which, of course, means that stupid BakeNeko Odd is in charge now. Things were much more settled when my fiancé was around. And much less lonely.

Odd says there's nothing we can do, but I disagree. I will avenge Ulrich's death, even if it means breaking away from the Lyoko Warriors. I don't know if I'll be back or not, so I'm leaving this as a final farewell.



Frowning, Odd lowered the note, azure eyes intense. Turning over the piece of paper, he noticed a small note that fit Aelita's handwriting. It read, Help me stop her.

Eyes widening, the purple-clad boy bolted down the hallway toward the girls' rooms and skidded to a stop at Yumi's door. Thrusting the door open, he rushed inside and barely kept himself from gasping in shock.

The room, which was normally clean and orderly, was extremely messy and the great majority of the objects were either broken or completely shattered. But it wasn't the destruction that startled him; it was the thick smell of blood.

"Oh God…" he blurted, covering his nose and mouth as cat-like ears flattened against blonde hair. I hate that smell! The cat-like blonde leapt out of the room and slammed the door shut, shaking his head to rid it of the scent. After a few seconds of breathing deeply, he dashed down the hallway, azure eyes full of concern. I don't have much time…

You're so cold

But you feel alive

Lay your hand on me

One last time

Damn this war! Odd thought venomously, dizzy from the scent of blood that clogged his senses. He wasn't sure how, but he managed to make it to the far side of the city where he was sure Yumi would look first. The only thing he regretted was having such perceptive senses.

The purple-clad BakeNeko leaned heavily against a brick wall, rubbing his temples to relieve some of the nausea that plagued him. "Now would've been a good time to have a cold," he muttered, glaring feebly at the sidewalk underneath him. "Then these damned smells wouldn't bother me so much."

His ears twitched and azure eyes widened suddenly. Scratch that. Through the smell of blood, smoke and gunpowder was a scent that Odd would recognize anywhere.


Pushing away from the wall, he frenziedly looked around himself. Took a few steps forward and found the scent increased slightly. Hurrying along the streets and alleyways, he finally found her…but not in the state he was wanting her to be in.

Crimson liquid pooled around her limp body, deep gashes crisscrossing her whole body. Her eyes were closed and it didn't look like she was breathing.

Kneeling by her side, he held her wrist and waited for a pulse. There was none.

Sighing in pained defeat, bright blue eyes looked at her bloodstained face. "Why didn't you listen, Yumi…?"

Dizzily standing up, azure eyes caught onto something silvery in color. Approaching the patch, he noticed it had a sparkle to it. Elf blood?

"Aelita!" he exclaimed, jumping back. Is she still alive? Fear ignited itself inside him when he realized he couldn't pick up her scent. How am I supposed to find her?

Show me how we end

It's alright

Show me how defenseless

You really are

Satisfied yet empty inside

Well, that's alright

Let's give this another try

After what seemed like hours of roaming, Odd finally could sense her scent. He followed it until he reached an old factory that seemed to have been abandoned for quite some time.

Cautiously closing his fingers over the cold metal knob, he turned down the handle and pushed in.

The room, though dusty with rust stains on the walls, was completely covered in metal sheets. Only the floor wasn't covered in metal, but the fact that it was concrete wasn't very comforting.

He slowly walked in, tail and ears twitching and azure eyes shifty. A sensation was running up and down his spine which made him uncomfortable. Suddenly, without warning, the door slammed shut and a definite 'click' resonated throughout the whole room. Quickly turning around, he shuddered as he realized two things: there was no knob on the inside; and all smell and sound was completely removed from the atmosphere. It was almost like he had suddenly died except he was fully aware of his rapid breathing.

The human-like BakeNeko then decided he had to figure out a way to escape. Looking around, he noticed the reason why the room wasn't pitch-black: a small square window near the top of one of the walls was filtering in bluish light, which was strange considering it was supposed to be dusk outside.

At least it's something, he thought to himself, bounding toward it. Agh, now if only the walls were made of concrete… He glared at his claws which he knew where useless against smooth metal. Unless…

An idea springing up, he took two steps back and held out his hands, palms facing the wall. Closing his eyes, he chanted in his head, By the power of the Sun and Earth, I plead for the will of Fire.

Opening glowing ruby eyes, he was greeted with sparks of yellow and orange that quickly transformed into blazing fire that sprang forth from his paw-like hands. A smirk materialized itself onto his lips at first, but it quickly transformed into confusion when he realized the metal wasn't making any sort of reaction to his fire. What the…?

After who-knows-how-long, Odd sighed in defeat and closed his eyes. Doomed to mortality and banished to Earth, allow me freedom from this bondage. He then, slowly, lowered his hands, ears flat against blonde hair and striped tail swishing in agitation. What the hell's going on?

His eyes suddenly snapped open as a scent made itself known in the near-empty room. It was the smell of rotting flesh and fresh blood…the smell of death. Looking toward the air vent, a shiver migrated up and down his spine as a fog-like substance slithered into the room.

He immediately got as far away from the specter as he could and spread out his limbs in a defensive stance, azure eyes hardening.

The specter fell noiselessly to the floor, collecting itself and compacted itself.

Odd froze in shock, azure eyes taking the new form of his enemy. It was just like looking at a mirror from Hell.

The specter had cat-like ears, paw-like hands and a long, striped tail just like the original BakeNeko. But instead of having blonde hair with purple ears and a purple diamond-shape in his hair, he had blood-red hair and black ears and diamond-shape. Instead of a purple battle uniform, the specter wore a black body suit with a glowing red symbol pulsating on its chest. Silver shoes and blood-red highlights in place of the gold and orange. Instead of a purple tail, it was black with crimson stripes. And instead of the azure eyes of Odd, they were glowing blood-red.

The purple-clad blonde took a step back and realized his back was against a wall. Ears now completely flat against blonde hair, azure eyes wide and gleaming white claws fully tracted, he demanded in a low voice, "What do you want, XANA?"

Ivory fangs gleamed in the blue light as the specter tilted his head back in laughter. "As if you don't know!" XANA's eyes glowed brighter in eagerness, the symbol's pulsation rate increasing as if excited by something. He smirked delightedly as he observed the discomfort in his prey's posture. "Thanks for the design, though. You're a great inspiration." He proceeded to turn around, showing off his doppelganger body.

Odd was still staring as XANA in shock, though he was starting to recover. Fear flashed temporarily in azure eyes as a chilling thought leapt into his mind. "Where's Aelita?"

Glowing crimson eyes jumped from himself to his prey, the smirk growing. "The winged elf?"

I don't have time for games, the blonde thought, azure eyes hardening again. "Where is she?" he insisted, stepping forward.

The dark-clad specter pouted and made his ears droop slightly. "Why are you interrogating me? Besides…" He turned to fully face his prey, the delighted smirk reappearing on his face. "We're not here to talk about her."

Confusion snuck its way onto Odd's face, though it was partly masked by anger. "Then what are we here for?"

The specter giggled gleefully. "I thought you'd never ask!" The instant he snapped his fingers, the metal walls changed into trees and the concrete floor transformed into grass. The smell of death was masked by the scent of nature, which helped to relax the purple-clad BakeNeko.

XANA smiled in an almost friendly manner as he noticed this taking place. "Thought the change in scenery would help."

Odd gave his opponent a cautious, almost threatening look, which only made him chuckle.

"What do you think I'm gonna do to you?"

I can think of a few things… Although is posture was a little more relaxed, he was still in his defensive stance just in case.

The specter tilted his head slightly, giving his prey a curious look. Shrugging, he went straight to the point. "I've been testing out countless warriors to see who's the strongest," he explained, placing his hands behind his back and pacing a little. "But so far, no one's been able to pass the test."

The blonde kept his eyes on the other being, waiting for something. But to keep the conversation juicy, he asked, "What are the terms of the test?"

"Oh," the other said, smiling devilishly. "Nothing too hard; you can do whatever you want to do, but there's a catch." He stopped pacing and his tail raised as if he were about to pounce. "You have to stay alive."

"What are the terms?" A shiver ran laps up and down his spine when the specter's smile grew wider.

"If you die, we can try figuring something out…if you live, you get to be my apprentice."

Purple cat-like ears flattened some more, tail swishing angrily. He's not giving me any other choice… Sighing, he walked closer to his enemy, but not too close. "What are we waiting for?"

Again, the pulsation rate of the red symbol increased in excitement, the pounding of rapid beats now clearly heard from the specter's chest. His eyes glowed even brighter, black ears fully erect. "Alright, then…let's dance."

Show me how we end

It's alright

Show me how defenseless

You really are

Satisfied yet empty inside

Well, that's alright

Let's give this another try

Hours later (or what seemed like hours to Odd), he and XANA were still in an all-out battle in the hologram-room. The settings were for late-summer night, with the full moon shining down on the two warring fighters.

By now, the purple-clad blonde was covered in scratches and three deep gashes in his side, his breathing labored and azure eyes becoming clouded. Without warning, a black paw-like hand grabbed onto his throat and forced him up against a tree. Glowing crimson eyes focused on azure ones, the delighted smirk visible on the specter's pale face.

"You wanted to know where the winged elf was earlier," he whispered cynically, the dark tone enough to make anyone's spine shiver. "Are you still curious?"

The clouds immediately lifted from azure eyes. He glared at the demon that had him pinned to the bark-covered plant.

The smirk grew wider as he held up his other paw, palm facing up. Suddenly, the smell of blood filled the air as a sparkling silvery substance started oozing out of XANA's hand. "Aelita took the test," he said in a low voice, raising his hand slightly to make sure his prey saw the shiny liquid. "She failed."

Azure eyes widened, Odd's already trembling body trembling even harder. He could feel himself breaking and tears were threatening to form in his eyes. Shutting them tight he screamed "NOOOOO!!!" and shoved the specter off of him. Panting hard, he swiped bloodstained claws at his enemy with furious speed.

It's alright

XANA grinned in cruel satisfaction, dodging every blow Odd was throwing at him. "Hey, it's not my fault she wasn't strong enough to survive." He ducked under a head-shot and swiped at the other boy's stomach.

It's alright

The purple-clad BakeNeko paused in movement and breathing, claws going in deep and cutting up intestines. Staggering backwards, he started gasping in pain and nearly collapsed onto the blood-soaked grass…almost.

Snarling and ears flat against blonde hair, azure eyes slowly began to glow ruby-red as he looked up at the damned specter. Small tongues of flame snaked around his right arm, the yellow arrow on his wrist glowing white. Raising his arm, he yelled "Agni kai!" and a blast of flames flew forward, spreading out and burning the trees and grass in its wake. "Die you bastard!"

It's alright

The black-clad demon leapt high above the fire and landed on his prey, grinning insanely. "What a weak spell," he teased, clicking his tongue. "I thought you were capable of more than that." He jumped off of him as a tongue of flame licked his paws, the grin shrinking into an amused smirk.

Odd would have attacked XANA while he was still in the air, but the pain and lack of blood was dramatically slowing him down. He completely missed his target. Dammit! Gritting his teeth, he lunged forward and tried a few more swipes at the demon. The end result was similar enough and he found himself back on the ground.

It's alright

The specter just chuckled cynically, standing calmly over his prey. "Come on," he said, kneeling down with his face now close enough to the other boy's ear for him to whisper. "Show my how defenseless you really are."

It's alright

Shakily, the purple-clad blonde stood up, his breathing ragged and intestines spilling out. Azure eyes glaring savagely at glowing crimson, he whispered coldly, "Not likely."

The smirk didn't leave, however, but he did stand back up. The pulsation had slowed in the meantime, though it started quickening when he climbed effortlessly to his feet. "Well then, Odd," he started, smiling. "You've passed the test. Congratulations!"

It's alright

Shock from the news and loss of blood caused Odd to fall back down, azure eyes again clouded in gray. He slowly curled as he felt himself begin to break again. Shaking, tears slowly slid down his face. I'm sorry, Aelita…

It's alright

A/N2: Well…the ending was a little more rushed than I thought it would be…did I made Odd a lot like Inuyasha, too? o0

All flames will be consumed and spat out as dust, so don't waste your time.

Burakku's Shadow/Manjoume-Enchantress