Black Cat - Chapter 4 - Anniversary
It had been two months to the day since Train had fallen from the cliff. Slowly, he drew Hades and looked straight at his target. Three shots rang out, as cans half a mile away went flying. It would appear that his shooting skills were not hindered by his recent incident. Each can obediently flew off the ground, out of a tree, or over a wall as a bullet hit it. No, it was something else. His body just wouldn't move as fast as he wanted it to. He felt stiff and restless, but aggravatingly weak.
"Give it some time. You aren't going to be perfect again immediately, you know," said a familiar voice.
"What do you want Rinslet?" Train asked, forcing his gun open with a steady hand. Shells met his fingertips, and he mindlessly extracted them.
"I just want to help," said Rinslet defensively.
"You can't help. No one can ever help when it comes to this. The only people in this world who could even begin to bring me back up to where I was are the Chronos numbers. Currently, there are only five left and I have contact with none."
"Jenos would help you," said Rinslet casually.
"Jenos Hazard? Since when have you had access to him?"
"Since like…forever ago. But that isn't the point. He can help you right? I can convince him really easily. How about it?"
Train looked at her thoughtfully for a moment. "And why would he help me?"
Train didn't particularly like Jenos. He was a bit too cocky and overly womanizing for his taste, but then again, perhaps this human side of him was what made him acceptable to Rinslet. It wasn't as if Jenos failed on a regular basis as a number either. The main difference between him and the rest of the Chronos numbers was that he could feel more than they could. Train stared past Rinslet. He, the legendary Black Cat, the invincible number thirteen—the one ultimate assassin that never failed… Even he had started to feel something once he met Saya. Train thought about this. The day he met Saya was the day the he started thinking twice about pulling the trigger of Hades.
"He's the one who found you, Train. And I know he wouldn't mind testing his skills against the legendary number thirteen in a friendly match. I mean, you two really aren't very different are you?" said Rinslet innocently.
Train scoffed, "Me and Hazard alike? Not in this lifetime."
Rinslet was taken aback. She stared at Train with her mouth open.
"Why do you have to be like that?" she demanded. "You're always getting yourself and everyone around you into trouble, and when someone does try to help you, you won't let them in. All you ever do is brood in silence. Why can't you let someone else into your small world for once?"
Train's eyes flickered towards her angrily. The glare that followed made Rinslet fall silent and back a few feet away from him. She knew better than to provoke him.
"You really think I never let anyone in? Do you seriously think I would have come back if I didn't care for Sven and Eve? Would I have taken a bullet and fallen off a cliff for anyone else but someone that meant something to me? WELL!?"
Rinslet stared at him, petrified. It was just then that a swift hand met is cheek. Train staggered backwards, putting a hand to the cheek that had been struck, not looking up.
"Don't you ever speak to her that way!" said a very angry male voice. Train knew it immediately. Jenos Hazard was there, his arms around his beloved woman thief.
"Train?" Rinslet spoke shakily.
"Leave me alone," Train said quietly as he turned and walked past them, not even glancing up to look at them. Upon walking inside the motel they were staying in, he brushed past Sven without a word or a glance, earning him a frown from the older man. He yanked the door of his room open and shut it behind him with a snap.
"What is he so upset about?" Sven asked as Rinslet walked into the hallway.
"Uh…just a little misunderstanding," she said with a sheepish smile.
Sven surveyed her expression and shrugged, "If you say so." With that, he walked away, leaving her alone. She had sent Jenos home as a response to his harsh action, thanking him but also reprimanding him.
Rinslet walked up to Train's door and knocked, "Train? Can I come in?"
She was answered by silence. Taking this opportunity, she opened the door and walked inside. Train was laying on a bed in the corner of the room with his eyes closed and Hades in his hands.
Train's answer came after a moment of silence, "What part of 'leave me alone' do you not understand?"
"I'm sorry, Train. I wasn't being fair."
"She died because I was late for our date that day."
Rinslet 's eyebrows shot up in surprise. Confusion entered her mind.
"She was waiting for me alone. Because I didn't want to let her in, I made her wait. Because I was unable to allow myself to let go of what I was still holding on to, she died. Because I had let her in without realizing it, my heart broke for her that day. I was too late, Rinslet. I couldn't do anything for her. She died in my arms."
Understanding slowly started to seep into Rinslet's mind. This was…
"I let her down. I killed her by not being there for her. I won't ever make that mistake again."
"Train…you couldn't have known that Saya would be in danger. You can't blame yourself for that."
"But I did know. I knew the second she left the night before it happened. I could feel it somehow. But… I also know that she doesn't blame me. When I do get to where she is someday, I'll have to apologize to her properly. But until then, I won't allow anyone else I know to become a victim."
"Train. Don't you think it's about time you forgave yourself for that as well? It's been years since her death."
Train sat up, looking down at the floor, "I no longer have a grudge towards anyone, whether they be myself, the man who wounded her, or anyone else. But you wanted to know why I don't let people in. The answer is simply that I already have let them in. I just deal with it differently than you do."
The door suddenly burst open revealing an energetic-looking Sven and an emotionless Eve. Train and Rinslet looked up at them.
"Hey, Train. So I was thinking we could all have a bite to eat to celebrate your recovery before we leave t—"
"Sure," said Train quietly, a smile touching his lips. Rinslet stared at Train unsmiling. He wasn't the same gluttonous, immature, stray black cat that she remembered before he left on his own.
"Can you give me another minute, Sven? I'll be ready in a moment," said Train.
"Sure," said Sven befuddled.
"Thanks," said Train with a smile that hardly lit a pair of sad eyes.
Rinslet stared at him, consciously keeping her mouth from falling wide open in amazement. Since when had Train become so mature? It was as if a concussion and shattering a few dozen bones had knocked some manners into him.
"Train…are you sure you're alright?"
He turned his head towards her and lifted a corner of his mouth into a crooked smile.
"I'm trying to be better about this. Saya would want me to try harder and be nicer, today of all days."
Rinslet stared at Train blankly, "Today?"
"Today is the anniversary of her death."
A light bulb seemed to turn on in Rinslet's head. He never seemed to let on exactly how much Saya had affected him, but judging from all that he had just said; she appeared to be very important to him.
Train got to his feet, "We should go. Sven and Eve are waiting." Train walked to the door, opened it and walked out of the room without glancing at Rinslet to see if she was following. Rinslet frowned, and got her feet as well. Pausing to look at his blue jacket carelessly draped over a chair in the corner, she frowned.
"I wonder…was she the reason he left Chronos?"
Turning on her heel she walked to the door. That would be a question for another day.
Train's cell phone rang as he got into the car. Reaching into his pocket he picked it up.
"Rinslet? Aren't you coming?"
"It's time I got moving again. I've stayed in one place for far too long."
There was a slight pause as his eyes saddened a little. If truth be told, he had gotten used to her company.
"Later then," he said quietly.
"Take care, Train."
"Yeah. Bye," said Train.
Train turned the phone in his hand and pressed a red button on it. Sven looked at him.
"She's going back on the road, so she won't be joining us."
"That's a shame. Oh well," said Sven, turning around and starting the car.
Train watched the motel disappear behind him. So, he was still here with these people after all. For having the unlucky number thirteen branded into his flesh, he couldn't help but think he was pretty damn lucky. An amused smile spread across his face—thirteen had to be his own special, lucky number…
Well that sums it up. Hope everyone liked it! This chapter marks the end of this fic, but remember to tell me what you think. I like reading what you have to say.
I'm off to start on the next chapter for the Full Metal Panic fic. Happy Valentines Day!