It was something I had been fighting all along, spreading through my body like a disease, taking me over piece by piece

It was something I had been fighting all along, spreading through my body like a disease, taking me over piece by piece. I tried to fight it, but I wasn't strong enough.

My heart wasn't strong enough…

Remembrance – Lenalee's POV

I begged my legs to move. How could they fail on me now, during one of the deadliest – maybe even the final – battle of my career as an exorcist? How could they suddenly decide to go limp beneath me, no longer having the will to fight on?

Whatever the reasons, my legs were dead, and they weren't going to revive their strength anytime soon. I crashed to the ground, my vision become blurry as the loss of blood got to me. I could smell death lingering in the air, filling my mouth with a bitter taste. Or was that the blood again? I wasn't sure.

From the shapes I could make out I could see fire and explosions…vague figures darting left and right, on offensive and defensive at the same time. I could hear laughter, screaming, and battle cries all at once, and the overwhelming noises flooded my mind, ripping it apart, destroying my already weakened concentration. I felt the steady beat of rain as it began to fall down against my already freezing skin. I shivered, though I was grateful for the sudden change in weather. I needed something to get me more alert, and the freezing droplets seemed to be doing the trick….

Mostly.

Planting my arms on the ground, I tried to lift myself again, thinking of all I had to fight for – no, what I had to live for. I couldn't give up now. If I didn't return home, what would happen to the other exorcists? What about my brother? I couldn't die now. I had people to return to. People I had to fight for.

Of course, my legs didn't know this. I collapsed once again onto the dark earth, pain shooting up my legs.

Rubble from another one of the explosions sped by me, piercing my back with fresh, new cuts. I winced, biting my lip. When would this battle be over?

I saw a bright flash of light. It was aimed towards me, soaring at a mile a minute, though my eyes seemed to take it in slow motion. I tried to stand up, to even crawl away, but my efforts were in vain. This was the end. No matter what the future held or who was waiting for me, this was the end. I opened my mouth, ready to utter a final prayer, when a figure leapt in front of me.

Lavi jumped in-between me and the attack in the last second, too late to block it. It hit him with all of its force, and the already injured bookman fell over on top of me. He was so much bigger than me that I felt the breath leave me for a moment, and I used my arms to try and nudge him off. I pushed him lightly, but he didn't move. My hand slipped to his chest, pushing once again. Still, he did not move off of me. I felt blood seeping through his shirt onto my hands, and I suddenly noticed how cold he was. Colder than he should have been.

I rolled over, lying him down next to me. His face was pale and his body was drenched in blood all over. I placed my hands around his face, which was cold as ice.

"Lavi?" I whispered urgently, though I could hardly hear myself over the sounds of the battle behind me. "Lavi?" My hands traced down his scratched up, bruises arm, aiming for his pulse. Just as my fingers wrapped around his icy wrist, blackness crept up around my eyes, swallowing up my consciousness.

--

I tore away from my sleeping state, fighting against the nightmare whose claws were trying to pull me back in. My eyes fluttered open to reveal a bright, white room. I sat up with a jolt. I was in the infirmary.

"The battle's over," I murmured to myself. Without a second thought I threw off my sheets and rushed to find someone – anyone – who could tell me the outcome.

I searched my memory, trying to remember the last things I had seen before going unconscious. We had been fighting the Noah…my legs had stopped working…then Lavi…

Lavi!

I reached for the door just as the Matron came back into the room. She gave me an astonished look and beckoned me back into my bed.

"M-Matron!" I cried. "Please, listen to me for a moment. Lavi! What happened to Lavi? Before I went unconscious, he was…" My voice trailed off. Why hadn't I stayed awake long enough to make sure he was all right? I wanted to hit myself, but I knew how fussy the Matron was about inflicting injuries onto yourself.

She took my shoulders, pushing me back into my bed. "Everyone's having a difficult time right now," she said soothingly. "Not everyone survived."

I tried not to think too much about that. I found that I didn't want to know who had died. It was easier to keep pretending they were alive than to have to let go of them. I wasn't strong enough for that yet.

For some reason, I still felt desperate to know about Lavi, though. I supposed it was because he could have possibly died saving me. "Lavi survived, didn't he? What happened to him?"

The Matron seemed taken aback by the desperate tone in my voice. Nonetheless, she sat on the edge of my bed, straightening out the sheet with her hand, and answered me. "Lavi is alive."

I felt a rush of relief come over me. Thank goodness. If he had died like that, I never would have forgiven myself-

"-But I don't know how much longer that statement will remain true for," she finished, her eyes lifting to me. "It's a terrible thing, isn't it? Young people like you dying like this. I think that it's really shameless of…"

I wasn't listening to her anymore. Lavi was going to die? Is that what she had just said? No, that couldn't be true. He might die. He wasn't going to die. He'd be all right. I knew it.

"Can I see him?" I begged her, taking her hands in mine and holding them tightly. It was only then that I noticed how cold I was.

"I'm not sure that that…" she began, though she faded off mid-sentence. She took a sigh, nodding. "Yes, Lenalee. You can see him."

I was out of my bed and at the door in a second. I wasn't going to let him die. Not like this. Not because of me.