Chapter 3 : The Truth
"We have arrived, Lelouch. This is what I promised to you yesterday."
They have arrived in a mountainous area, about 5 km away from the city. The area was still covered by morning mist. In front of them, lied a huge reinforced titanium gate, the type that were used by military.
The mountains around them had an unusual black color. Lelouch looked closely at the mountains because of his curiosity.
It's black, but it feels different from the usual black that I have seen throughout my life.
"What is it, Lelouch? You were staring at the mountains."
"I was just curious about this strange black color."
"You will see more once we are inside the mine."
C.C got off from the jeep, and took a card out of her pocket.
"Hey, C.C. What's with this huge reinforced gate? Does a top secret laboratory lie behind this door?"
"No, you're wrong. This is the mine entrance. This mine was abandoned after the nobles lost their privileges."
"Does some kind of dangerous material exist beyond this door? Is it radioactive? Or is it highly explosive? Or, is it...."
"Ahhh....! Just shut your mouth. I will show it to you shortly."
C.C walked towards a small console located beside the gate. The scanner on the console scanned the card which C.C brought with her. Then, Lelouch started hearing sounds of machines.
They were the sounds of the gate moving. It seemed no one had entered this mine for a long time.
"Come in, Lelouch."
As Lelouch stepped his foot inside the mine, he felt something extremely oppressive.
"What's with this feeling? I feel excruciating pain and unbearable pressure throughout my body."
"You'll get used to it soon. Now, we have to walk about 10 minutes to reach our destination."
Lelouch finally get used to it. He walked slowly beside C.C, while looking at the wall and ceiling of the cave. They had the same color as the mountains outside the mine.
"We have reached our destination."
In front of Lelouch, there were towers of black crystals which came out of the ground, and the surrounding walls were also covered by it too.
The crystals were transparent, but at the same time they had mysterious black. The crystals also had a very smooth and shiny surface, as if they had been polished before.
"What.. is this?"
"This is Hexadite. This crystal can only be found in this place, and because of it this city was named 'Hexadite'"
Lelouch walked closer towards one of the crystal tower. He touched it with his right hand.
"This is the first time I heard about this crystal. Why can't I find it in the internet?"
"Because, this crystal is known as 'black diamond' in the public."
Black diamond... The rarest type of diamond and the most expensive material in the world. It is said that a pea-size of this diamond is more than enough to buy half a dozen of 7th generation knightmares.
"So, this is an extremely rare material for jeweleries that I am looking at. If this is just a rare diamond, do they really need that huge reinforced titanium door? Do they want to prevent theft that badly?"
"Do you remember that unpleasant feeling when you stepped your foot in this mine?"
"Yeah, I remember that clearly."
"That is one of the properties of this crystal. It emits extremely strong radiation, which can kill anything within 2 km radius instantly, and can affect any type of life forms within 20 km radius."
"If this material is that dangerous, why can they use it as jeweleries?"
"Let me explain this to you. Hexadite is almost 10 times tougher than normal diamond, has extremely high melting point, and it can absorb any kind of energy except electricity. Because of this unique properties, it cannot be cut at all even with the most advanced laser drill. They have to dig very deeply to find small pieces of this crystal for jeweleries. Then, they have to electrocute with 10 million volts of electricity continuously for a year to completely remove its radiation."
"If the radiation can cover such a large area, why can the people in the city live?"
"They and their ancestors have been exposed to this radiation since they were still in wombs. They are immune to this radiation, and they have increased physical ability due to mutation caused by the radiation. Normally, you need to wear a heavy anti-radiation suit to get close to this crystal. The reinforced gate of this mine was made to limit the radiation."
Lelouch thinks deeply...
Now I understand why they were exploited...
The people of the city are immune to the radiation, and they can work more efficiently & effectively because their genes have mutated.
But, why does this kind of crystal exist in this world? It cannot be cut, almost impossible to melt, and extremely lethal to any life forms...
C.C looked at Lelouch who were thinking deeply.
"Do you want to hear a local legend, Lelouch? The people of Hexadite believe that any outsiders who are immune to this crystal will bring either peace or destruction upon the world."
Outsiders who are immune to this radiation...
The only possibility is that those who have been exposed in the same radiation since their birth..
But, this material only exists in this place...
The outsiders are immortal... In other words, bearers of mark of Geass and Geass of Omnipotence?
But, bearers of mark of Geass have no power to use this crystal. So...
This crystal is meant for those who have Geass of Omnipotence?
Lelouch stretched both of his arms towards the crystal.
"What are you doing, Lelouch?"
C.C looked at Lelouch's eyes. Slowly, symbol of Geass started to appear.
Lelouch began moving his arms slowly. As he moved his arms, C.C felt that the ground began trembling.
"What are you doing? Do you want this cave to collapse? You-"
Lelouch lifted a big chunk of the crystal out of the ground. C.C was amazed. The impossible-to-cut crystal was split into two easily by him.
"What have you done?"
"I used Geass of Object Manipulation. With this Geass, I can manipulate this crystal easily. I can even remove its radioactive property easily."
Lelouch bent the crystals into the shape of a sword and put it on the ground.
"Let's get out of her, C.C. I don't like this radiation."
Just when he turned his head away from the crystal, he sensed that the crystal glowed briefly. He turned his head quickly to confirm it.
It must be my imagination...
Lelouch turned his head and headed towards the exit.
I have to do more research about Geass, and anything that has connection with it. It seems that I only understand the surface of the world of Geass.
They went back to the jeep. After C.C locked the gate, they went back to the city.
Both of them got off from the jeep, and Lelouch took the door key out of his pocket.
"So, Lelouch. Can you tell me about the plan that you have made last night?"
Lelouch inserted the key, and opened the front door.
"I will tell you once we are inside."
Both of them entered the house.
"My plan consists of multiple stages. But, before I can execute my plan, I have to do some errand first. Do you have a piece of paper and a pen, C.C?"
C.C walked towards the desk, which were located inside the reading room. She took a piece of blue paper and a pen.
C.C handed the pen and the paper to Lelouch.
"What are you going to do with them?"
"I'm going to write a letter. While I'm writing this letter, can you prepare a shuttle for me to use? And, bring also several white robes for me to use."
C.C prepared the shuttle faster than he expected. Lelouch went onboard the shuttle, while holding onto his unfinished letter and pen.
Lelouch put the pen down, as he finished writing down the letter.
"What are you going to do with that letter?"
C.C, who was sitting beside him, looked at his fingers closely. Lelouch put his finger on the edge of the paper, then he began folding the letter.
"You are making a bird-shaped origami out of a piece of letter?"
"Although it's not as well-made as Nunnaly's, this is good enough."
"What's that letter fo-"
Before she could finish her sentence, the sigil on his eyes began to glow. In a matter of milliseconds, he disappeared in front of her eyes. She let out a big sigh.
He used Geass of Time and Space....
Where has that idiot gone to?
Just after she finished sighing, Lelouch came back out of nowhere.
"Where have you gone?"
Lelouch sat back on his seat.
"I just came back from Kallen's house. The letter that I wrote was meant for her because I have few things that I have to tell her."
"You can't get her out of your mind? The last time both of you met was more than a year ago! Don't tell me, you fell in love with her before you 'died', and you use that letter to confess your love?"
C.C smirked at him.
"No! You're wrong! I-"
She looked at his face. Lelouch's facial expression changed to sad one.
"I just want to tell her not to involve herself in my plan. I also beg her to forgive me and to forget anything about me. I fully understand what she is thinking about me right now, and if she cannot forget about me, she will be bound by the past forever and won't be able to embrace the future. I sent that letter to calm her feelings."
There was a moment of silence inside the shuttle.
Lelouch turned his head, and looked at C.C.
"Right now, I don't want to let anyone get hurt because of me. Every time I remember how Euphemia, Shirley, and Rolo died for me, the more I want to prevent anyone from getting hurt. Maybe you're right, C.C. 'The power of the kings will only bring nothing but solitude.'"
"Does that mean... you also don't want me from getting hurt?"
C.C's heart was touched by Lelouch's kindness.
"Except you. You are like me, an immortal being. No matter how much we are hurt, we cannot die."
"You meanie... I cannot be hurt physically, but I still can be hurt mentally, right?"
"You are a 500-years old witch. You have seen so much in this world, that nothing matters to you right now, right?"
Lelouch smirked at her.
"You're wrong, Lelouch."
C.C leaned onto him, and turned her head towards him. She looked at Lelouch's eyes. It was his first time seeing C.C with this kind of expression; the expression of a love-struck maiden.
"C-C.C? What's wrong with you?"
"Emperor Lelouch, Lady C.C, we have arrived at our destination."
Lelouch quickly got off from his seat, as he was trying to escape from her.
C.C looked outside, and she saw gravestones.
"Where are we?"
"We are in Royal Graveyard. All Britannia's royal family are buried here. Do you remember what day it is?"
"Today is... the anniversary of Euphemia's death and... Charles's death. Wait, your father and Euphemia died on the same day?!"
"I just realized that yesterday."
He smiled at C.C.
Lelouch took the white robe out of his bag. The robe was like the ones worn by the Jews. It had long sleeve and a hood to cover his face.
"What are you doing in this kind of place with that kind of robe?"
"I'm about to execute the first phase of my plan."
He went out of the shuttle, and put on his hood. He walked slowly towards the graveyard.
Kallen's hand was trembling out of control. She cannot control her emotions; sadness, happiness, guilt, and anger mixed into one.
Kallen quickly read the rest of the letter. Tears began to flow out of her eyes.
It's been a long time since the last time I contacted you.
It's me, Lelouch.
I have come back from the realms of the dead. I can't tell you where I am or how I came back to life, but the only thing that I can tell you is I am planning to change human beings.
I know you want to join me, but don't. I have experienced so much pain of losing the ones whom I truly love, and I can't bear to watch anyone whom I know dying anymore.
I understand your feelings of guilt. You have betrayed me, opposed me, and even trying to kill me. But I don't blame you. You have your own decision, and it was my fault from the beginning; I wore the mask called 'Zero' to hide my true self from you and the rest of the world. Liars deserve punishments from the world.
I clearly remembered about that day; the day when I was stabbed by Suzaku. The moment before I fell down, I looked at your eyes. Your eyes were filled with tears of regret and sadness. When everyone saw me bathed in blood, you were the only one who cried my name. At that time, I clearly understood; I clearly understood that you truly love me from the bottom of your heart, that you would sacrifice anything to keep me alive.
Since the die I was reborn, I accepted the new truth; that me and ordinary people cannot be together. Even if they befriend me, I will not die, but I will watch them die. The more happiness that I receive today, the sadder I will become tomorrow.
Please understand, Kallen. Burn every photos with me in it and burn every items that I have given to you. Forget about me, and embrace the future that I had prepared for the world. We won't meet again, even in heaven. I have been cursed with immortality, and I have sworn to myself; that I will protect everyone's peace and future, that I will eradicate any conflict in the world.
Kallen, forget about me. I can't stand anymore watching you crying for me. I don't want anyone who love me get hurt because of me, and especially you, Kallen. Your bitter memories of me will bind you to 'yesterday', and won't let you embrace 'tomorrow'.
The world only needs one sacrifice to preserve peace in the world, and that sacrifice is me. No one else can do it, and that is my destiny.
Stay strong, Kallen.
Forget about the past, and prepare yourself for the future.
Lelouch vi Britannia,
99th Emperor of Holy Empire of Britannia
Kallen grabbed the letter hard with her right hand, and her left hand wiped her eyes. Her eyes were red because of crying and wet because of the tears.
"There's no way I can do that, you idiot. You are the most important person in the world to me. Although you have become an immortal, I will remember you in my heart forever till my death."
Kallen smiled, although tears continuously flowed out of her eyes.
Nunnaly and Suzaku got off their shuttle. They have arrived at the Royal Graveyard, and both of them carried a bunch of flowers. They didn't bring any soldiers, because they wanted to be alone.
Suzaku wore Zero's costume, and Nunnaly wore white onepiece, with white high-heel shoes.
"Suzaku... I mean Zero, you are going to Euphemia's grave, right? I am going to father's graveyard."
"Okay. I will catch you up later."
Suzaku and Nunnaly parted at the main entrance of the graveyard. Nunnaly brought a bunch of roses, which were her favorite when she was a child.
As Nunnaly was walking towards Charles's graveyard, she noticed a man with white robe. She couldn't recognize that man; the hood was covering the man's head.
"Excuse me, are you father's friend?"
"Eh? Pardon me?"
"You said 'yesterday' is the best option, where everyone who died will come back to live again, where there will be no more lies, only truth will exist in this world. But, you were wrong. I have proven it with countless lives that 'tomorrow' is better than 'yesterday'."
Nunnaly closed her mouth, and listened carefully to what this stranger had been saying. From the man's talks, she understood that those words were not meant for her, bur for Charles.
"After your death, Schneizel tried to freeze the world in 'today', by using fear through Damocles and FLEIJA. He opposed me, saying that 'today' is better than 'tomorrow', but I proved to him that 'tomorrow' is better than 'today'. I have watched the world since my death, and 'tomorrow' is clearly the best option. Although I need to calm the world once more, 'tomorrow' is the best option. "
Nunnaly dropped the flowers. Her body began to tremble, as she was extremely shocked from the man's talks. He talked as if he was... her deceased brother.
The man turned her head towards her. His face still couldn't be seen.
"Isn't that right?"
Nunnaly knew that this time his words were meant for her.
Suddenly, the wind blew strongly. Because of the wind, the hood was opened.
Nunnaly's body trembled so greatly, that she could no longer control her body. Lelouch smiled at her.
"Long time no see, Nunnaly. I see that you have been working hard since you became the leader of Britannia. The world now becomes better thanks to your efforts."
Nunnaly was wordless.
"What's wrong with you, Nunnaly?"
He smiled at her.
Nunnaly jumped to him, and hugged him tightly.
"You stupid! Where have you gone? I... I..."
Nunnaly began to cry.
"I was so lonely, nii-sama. You were always by my side since we were abandoned by our family. When you suddenly left me alone, I had no reason to live anymore."
"But, when I remembered about your goal, I had a new reason to live. That is, to continue preserving peace in the world. Since then, I worked hard everyday. I was able to walk again, and I learned everything that I could not learn before; I began to learn mathematics, physics, everything from the basics. I am determined to be a leader that is favored by the public."
Lelouch patted her head gently, and gave her a gentle smile. Nunnaly looked at his face.
"I am so proud of you, Nunnaly."
Lelouch stepped back, and put his hood back again.
"Now, I must say goodbye."
Lelouch stretched his right arm towards her.
"Onii-sama! Don't go! Please, I beg yo-"
Nunnaly fainted, and she fell to the ground.
"I love you, Nunnaly. Continue to live in peace."
Lelouch walked to her unconscious body, and took her necklace. Then, he took his headphone from his pocket, and put it on his left ear.
"Jeanette, Elizabeth. Have you retrieved our targets?"
"This is Jeanette. We have retrieved our targets, and now we are in front of your house, awaiting for your arrival."
"Good. Keep an eye on them."
Lelouch changed the channel.
"C.C. Tell the pilot to get ready. We are going back to Hexadite."
Lelouch walked towards the shuttle through the back gate.
"Lelouch, what did you do back there?"
"To retrieve our source of fund."
Lelouch showed the necklace he retrieved from Nunnaly.
"Huh? You are going to sell that necklace? Are you an idiot?"
Lelouch smirked at her.
"I will show to you later. Now, I must continue with my plan."
Lelouch put the necklace in his pocket. He stood up, and walked towards the back of the shuttle.
"Where are you going Lelouch?"
She turned her head, and saw no one was there. Before she could hear an answer, he was already gone.
"That stupid. I am his one an only accomplice, and he should have told me everything about that 'plan' of his."
She gave out a big sigh, and at the same time she became extremely worried.
She couldn't shake the feeling; she was extremely worried that one day Lelouch might abandon her. He was the only reason why she chose to live permanently in a city. She was waiting for him all this time.
She realized her own feelings, during the time when she just arrived at Hexadite, that she didn't want to wish for death anymore... What she wanted to wish was... to be by Lelouch's side forever.
Half an hour had passed...
As she was almost fell asleep, she heard some noise from the back. Lelouch had come back.
"What took you so long? Where have you go-"
C.C's eyes widened. She did not believe what she was seeing with her own eyes.
She saw Lelouch in his blood-stained robe, with three people standing behind him.
"I think I don't have to introduce them to you."
Lelouch went to the toilet to change his robe. After he finished changing his clothes, he went back to his seat. Before he could sit back on his seat, the pilot made an announcement.
"Please put on your safety belts. We are about to begin landing preparation."
C.C looked outside. She could see the roof of her house. There were 6 people in front of the house.
"Your names are Elizabeth and Jeanette, right? What are you going to do with us?"
Elizabeth looked at Lloyd seriously.
"Just wait. Look at that shuttle. Inside it, The Emperor is about to explain everything to you."
Lloyd looked at the white shuttle which was about to land.
"Is this an abduction by terrorists?"
Cecile whispered to Lloyd.
"I don't know. What do you think, Rakshad, Nina?"
Lloyd looked at both of them. They didn't know the answer either, and shook their head.
When they were busy thinking, they didn't realize that the shuttle already landed.
The four of them turned their head, and waited anxiously for that 'emperor' to come out.
The door of the shuttle opened. A man in white robe came out. It was Lelouch.
"What is happening here?! You were supposed to be dead, just as what you said about your plan to put the world in peace! You are a liar!"
Nina shouted loudly, as she was filled with anger when she saw Lelouch she despised so much was still alive.
"Don't act like that, Nina."
Nina's body began to tremble when she heard this familiar voice. The voice of a woman dearest to her.
"I should re-introduce her to you."
Lelouch held the hand of a woman who stepped out of the shuttle.
"This is Princess Euphemia from the Holy Empire of Britannia."
There were two more persons behind her. They were Rolo and Shirley.
All of them stared at those three persons. They were in total shock.
Nina fell on her knees.
"T-that is impossible..."
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