His hair was still dripping wet when Lavi exited the horribly humid bathroom. Rushing straight for the coat laying on the floor, he plucked the silver mirror from it's hiding place. Holding the cool metal to his chest , the red head fingers curled around the mirror's frame work. The etched lotus blossoms were still striking, like the day they were carved.

"Oh Kami" he prayed, "Please don't let this pain repeat itself…"

"I need and ending! And I need it soon!". Quickly, he stuffed the precious item into it's pocket and slipped the jacket on. He rushed out of the hotel room in search of Kanda. The hallways were dark, and Lavi couldn't see very well. After a few minutes of blindly groping the walls, the redhead was able to find he staircase. "Easy…easy.." Lavi muttered to himself. He went down one step at a time, finally reaching the bottom platform. "Oh good. Huh, I thought there were a lot more turns on that stair-" his foot fell through the darkness and Lavi plummeted down the rest of the stairs.

There was chaos as Lavi hit the bottom platform.


"Watch where you're going jackass!"


"Baka usagi! Off!"

Lavi scrambled to his feet, barely able to see Kanda's lean thin frame. "Yuu-chan, please… I don't pity you! I admire you." Even in the dark, Lavi could see Kanda's outline stiffen. "B-baka usagi, running after me to try and spout nonsense." Lavi grabbed a hold on the blue haired teen's wrist and gripped it tightly. "It's not nonsense! Kanda, you are strong, beautiful, and afraid to be hurt. I know that! I know emotional pain is so frightening because your lotus can't heal it!"

Kanda let his wrist drop, and Lavi's grip became gentle as he held the thin hand to his chest. "Since when was vulnerability admirable" he sighed, his normally calm voice quivering. "It's been admirable since I met you…" Lavi soothed. The darkness of the stairwell made it easier for Lavi to talk. He did not have to look Kanda in the eye, it was too nerve wracking. "Kanda, you're very brave. You have the courage to go and find that person you've been looking for. I…have been taught that what is gone is gone. If your search for your friend makes you cry…then cry. Cry loudly because you want him home. Cry because if you let it all out he might hear you, or reach out to you." Now even the calm apprentice's voice began to quiver as tears rolled down Kanda's face.

"Kanda Yuu, I lo--" A big explosion rocked the two in the staircase, cutting Lavi off. "Akuma?!" Kanda exclaimed. Lavi held on tightly to the railing of the stairs. "I don't know!". Clouds of dust and debris rained down as the old building shook violently. Running for the door, Lavi's pant leg snagged on a piece of metal jutting out from the hotel frame. "Gak!" he exclaimed, hitting the ground hard. A loud moan emerged from the upper floors of the structure as the remaining beams buckled. Wide eyed in horror Lavi could only see two things. The ceiling plummeting towards him….and Kanda sprinting towards him with an outstretched arm.

Then all was black.

It was pitch black and all Lavi could smell was moldy debris. Sand and dust coated the inside of his throat, causing him to cough uncontrollably. It hurt to even breath in through his mouth. Nestled in the wreckage he tried to look for the outlines of the wood, though the couldn't see a thing. The apprentice panicked as he analyzed the situation. Am I bleeding? Is help coming? I feel numb, I can't feel anything. The teen squirmed in his tight air pocket. It was hopeless, the initial impact had left him numb. Lavi tried to calm himself down. If it was only the impact, in a little while he would feel pain. The wreckage was keeping him packed tight and numb. If he was to escape and not return to normal…he was paralyzed.

Lying alone in his mix matched tomb, Lavi's mind drifted off. Where's Kanda. Where's my Yuu-chan? The silence of the ruins answered him. He's not here. Where is he? Alive? Dead? Buried? Lavi's hand quivered in fear, the act of terror comforting Lavi as he knew he had control of his arms now. The scratched and bloodied fingers felt around and found a soft towel that had fell. Hiccuping back his tears, Lavi grasped the towel tightly. For a moment, it's soft fibers felt like a hand. The teen's battered hand shook as it held onto the towel. Until he was found, this was his only source of comfort. A small battered towel, in a small pile of wreckage.

Lavi could've sworn it'd been hours. He felt fatigued and drained. Sleep was so appealing, yet he was afraid to even rest his eyes. His eyes dart around the black hole frantically. If they stop, he might die. If he stops, he might die. If those who are looking for him stop, he might die. The swirling thought of death dragged him under. It was like an icy current, and he was atop a shallow rock in the middle. "Lavi" a voice in his head chimed. A top his rock, Lavi could imagine Bookman. His old shriveled hands folded behind his back neatly. "Lavi, jump in" he cooed, his soft voice audible over the roaring current. "If you have not made an impact on history…you will not splash. And the current will not harm you. You have nothing to leave behind, right?" Clutching that mental rock, Lavi shook his head furiously. "You're insane. By just being born someone can change history. I will splash, I admit it!" Bookman looked down disapprovingly. "Then the splash will pierce your soul like a thousand knives, dividing your good and bad actions. Deciding on whether to send you to 'heaven' or 'hell'" Lavi gulped as the water rose higher up onto the rock. " It will be cold, harsh, and cruel…like life with others. You will feel things in extremes and be helpless."

Helpless. That was what he…no…they were most afraid of. Yuu was afraid of being helpless in protecting himself and those he cares for. Lavi felt the word pierce through him as he choked back more tears. The water engulfed his feet and Bookman's illusion held out his shriveled hand once more. "Now Lavi, jump." The roaring current sped past Lavi's green eye as he broke into a cold sweat. "Jump, Lavi". His fingers dug into the rock, already partially submerged. "No. I won't." he stammered over the water's roar. The ghostly illusion of bookman smirked at the teen. "Now…Lavi…." it snickered. "JUMP IN" A thin nimble hand wrapped itself around Lavi's raw cut hands and pulled him into the water with great force.

There was a rush of water, shortness of breath, but most frightening…a splash.