Soul Eater characters will never belong to me. Sigh.
Chapter 6: Do you really want to know?
"All students of Shibusen University, please assemble at Heaven's Gate Lecture Hall at 1pm. Thank you."
Black Star frowned in confusion as the public announcement ended with a chirpy tune. He looked over questioningly to his companion as they were walking together after their lecture. She returned his frown equally and waved her hand at him.
"Well, don't expect any answers from me. I have no idea what it's going to be about."
"What? You, the great academic Maka Albarn having NO idea? Bull."
Maka sighed and scratched her head in response. It seemed that Black Star hadn't grown out of his bad manners and poor choice of words.
"Hey, I tried coming over to your place to hang out with Soul the other night, but it was dark at 10pm. You guys sleep early huh."
Maka's mind went abuzz as she wondered what she should say without giving anything away.
"W-when was this?"
"I don't know, probably last Tuesday?"
"Oh. Well, you know, we do have early nights at times. Work and all."
Maka shrugged as nonchalantly as she could, hoping Black Star bought her act.
"Reeeeally now? I thought Soul just returned from his mission, how come you guys are already caught up with work together so soon? Are you guys sharing a bedroom or somethin'? Your bedroom was unlit, and that's really strange because you're such a workaho-"
"B-B-Black Star! Are you spying on me!"
Maka's sudden embarrassed outrage caught the surprised attention of students around them. Black Star's expression gave nothing away, as he maintained a knowing grin that conveyed satisfaction.
"Wow, Maka. Jokes aside, I didn't know you guys are already way into-"
Maka paused at the sound of that interruption. She already knew who the owner of the voice was. As she turned around to see her Weapon standing behind her, she also realised that Soul Evans looked majorly impatient and exasperated.
"Not cool, mate."
"What's not cool? Me speaking to your girlfriend? You do know we have nothing going on between Maka and I. I still don't know what you see in her. So boring, straight-laced, academic..."
"Cut it. Anyway, you better stop teasing her. We're not kids anymore."
The guys then performed their obligatory 'oh-so-cool' high fives, with the seasoned movements practiced to perfection ever since they met each other.
Maka couldn't help but colour slightly at the last sentence. Soul and her were definitely not kids anymore. They had since discarded their innocence aside, a long time ago.
Black Star noticed Maka's reaction and he smirked. Of course, he had the fullest respect for his longtime friends, and it was always fun to poke at Maka a bit. Seeing how Soul defended his Meister revealed a lot of information which didn't have to be verbally conveyed. Their body language was almost delicious to take in.
"I-I gotta go now. Catch you guys later."
Maka kept her eyes peeled to the ground as she walked away briskly. She wasn't even sure where she was heading off to, but her face felt hot and she definitely didn't want Black Star observing her at this moment.
"Maka, don't forget to reconvene at Heaven's G-"
"I know, seeya!"
Soul sighed as his lover walked straight ahead without turning back. He had been delighted to see her on the corridors since Nakatsukasa Tsubaki and him had finished their lecture and had some time to kill, but it seemed that he wouldn't see her again till 1pm.
On this day, the white-haired Weapon was decked in a simple black sweatshirt with fitting dark blue jeans. His white canvas shoes and brown messenger bag made him the epitome of casual coolness. He always knew he would have fawning glances thrown his way.
Soul turned around to face his buddy, who had a devilish grin on his face. He sighed resignedly, knowing that it was probably futile to deny anything.
"You stud, you! I had my doubts, and Tsubaki refused to spill the beans. You could have your choice of any girl, or well, heck, have a different girl each day! But noooo, you chose Ms Albarn. Why in the world am I not surprised?"
"Without giving you an affirmative answer, why the hell are you so insistent on finding out what's happening between Maka and me?"
"Oh c'mon, things change when people are in a relationship. I'm positive with my suspicions now that I see Maka behaving and looking differently."
"Wait … she is?"
"You can't tell? But oh well, you are the one making her different anyway. Been veeeery busy lately huh, you. Let the poor girl get some sleep, won't you?"
Soul narrowed his eyes but he surprised himself by feeling a tad bit embarrassed. He looked away and Black Star felt an enormous swelling of his pride coming right up.
"Wow wow wow, go me! The great Black Star don't require any spies. I can get my own information in my own way. I'm the best!"
Soul couldn't help but smile at his best friend shouting away in the corridor. He took the opportunity to observe Black Star, and realised he had attained some new injuries to his right arm and shoulder. Black Star was a tad taller than him, a tanned bloke with short spiky hair which complimented his image. Soul knew Black Star would be a stunner if he simply dressed better, of which he never would. His tall build was lean but muscular; light as a feather when in assassination mode and yet solid as iron when engaged in body combat. He had his fair share of admiration from the girls, but he was always none the wiser. He was boisterous and loud, but Soul noticed Black Star had become noticeably quieter as they grew older.
He knew why.
Black Star was beginning to feel the blood of his cursed heritage stir. Despite Black Star being his own character, Soul had seen moments when his best mate fully embraced his true nature. Soul didn't know what to think when Black Star's eyes reverted to their original state, bearing the same symbol that his father had. In that mode, Black Star would became dangerously suave, serious and very powerful. He also realised, to his morbid amusement, that Black Star would regard their lovely Tsubaki with a beastly hunger and with raw longing reflected in his eyes.
"Despite him laughing and trying to make me feel embarrassed, he has a far bigger problem than mine. I'll let this go."
"Soul? Hey man, you zoned out on me!"
"Sorry, you never told me you could be so boring."
"I'd say you are just trying to worm yourself out of this."
"Yeah, perhaps. I'm a gentleman, and I keep a woman's secrets. You're getting nothing from me."
"Cheh, you're boring as shit. C'mon, let's grab lunch before this stupid gathering at 1."
Maka waved to Tsubaki as she approached her outside Heaven's Gate Lecture Hall. The gentle Weaponry bowed politely and tucked a stray hair behind her ear, the epitome of all things woman. Maka breathed out a sigh of relief as she pulled her books closer to her chest.
"Is something wrong, Maka-chan?"
"Oh, Black Star cornered me and asked me some uncomfortable questions earlier."
Tsubaki looked alarmed and apologetic as she started bowing profusely.
"O-Oh, Tsubaki-chan! You don't have anything to apologise for, really!"
Tsubaki looked up and shook her head in exasperation.
"He never grows up, that boy. I will have a good talk to him later."
"Don't, Tsubaki-chan. It's OK, he didn't mean any harm. I'm sure Soul set him right anyway."
Both girls smiled at each other with mutual understanding and support.
"So, Maka-chan, do you know what the announcement was about?"
"No, I'm very much in the dark about this. Let's go in and grab some seats for us all."
As the 4 friends sat next to each other amongst the sea of noisy University students, Maka couldn't help but sneak a small smile at her soulmate. Soul returned it with a loving smirk, making Maka feel all warm inside. She could get used to this. Tsubaki was busy chiding Black Star next to her, and Maka could hear Black Star singing a song to drown Tsubaki out. It was chaotic and funny all at the same time.
"Can we all have your attention please?"
The lecture hall slowly fell silent as the Dean took his position behind the lectern.
"We understand the ambiguity of this sudden gathering today. Please do not be mistaken, it is not a random event. We took into account students' attendances on this day, as we want to be certain that everyone will be here."
Maka started biting her lip, and Soul had to resist the urge to stop her. Romantically.
"Starting from today, I will be taking up the position of Vice-Dean."
A slow murmur started arising from the student population, with heads turning around to look at their neighbours quizzically. The 4 friends did the same.
"We welcome our new Dean who is appointed effective as of today."
The lecture hall was momentarily silent as a figure stepped out onto the podium, walking confidently and commanding everyone's gazes. As he positioned himself behind the lectern, he raised his head and an unanimous gasp was heard. Jaws dropped. Looks of disbelief and awe followed. Some girly 'kya's were already in order.
"Thank you, Vice-Dean. Good afternoon to all of you, my fellow students at Shibusen. It has been a long time, no doubt. I am the new Dean of Shibusen University …
… Death The Kid."
Kid scanned the crowd as he gave a short message following his appointment.
"There they are."
He caught their eyes and he smiled. Maka, Soul, Tsubaki and Black Star were flabbergasted.
"Is-is it really him?"
"I think so, Maka…"
"He's changed, hasn't he, Black Star?"
Black Star narrowed his eyes and gritted silently. Kid had returned after a few years of absence, and he was in tip-top shape. Attire-wise, he was wearing slim fitting black pants, leather shoes, a royal dark blue collared shirt with a thin black tie. He sported a silver chain hanging across his rich-black suit pocket and was easily as tall as Soul or Black Star.
His trademark Lines of Sanzu stood defiantly bright amongst the darkness. He sported a short handsome crop that brought out his jaw lines and eyes that blazed like the sun.
He was now a man.
Maka and Tsubaki couldn't help but look on in admiration for a while. After all, Kid always had an inexplicably clear and powerful aura around him. Now that he was also mature and had become masculine, he was exuding a sensual-ness that had most of the girls hooked on breathlessly.
Soul and Black Star, along with the male population, were not happy.
"Thank you for taking the time to gather here today. I bid my farewell here, and I am sure we will be seeing each other often in the halls as I am very much a Dean and a student. I will be taking classes to catch up because of my extended absence prior, but rest assured, I will perform my duties as Dean faithfully."
Kid bowed regally before he started walking off the podium. The enraptured and somewhat slightly stunned audience began applauding, and the 4 friends were bursting to see him. They rushed out to the corridors and made their way to the Dean's Office.
As they turned the corner, Maka was surprised to see her father standing in front of the door.
"We have serious business commencing in the meantime. Kid, ah… the Dean won't be able to see you guys for a while."
"Already? You guys work him too hard."
Spirit looked at Black Star and shrugged in dismay.
"It's not me, I'm just the guard this time. Shinigami-sama is in deep conversation with his son, so I'm obviously not letting anyone interrupt them."
"Shouldn't they have that conversation a long time ago? I'm sure Kid must have returned way before-."
"No, Soul. We were just as surprised because Kid, ah, the Dean… oh damnit, Kid just returned today. No one knew. It was a shock to see him rock up this morning, and I actually didn't recognise him until he removed his cloak and I saw his Lines of Sanzu. Funnily enough…"
Spirit turned his attention to his only daughter, who began to squirm uncomfortably.
"What is it!"
"Kid said that he gave you a heads-up, and he made it sound almost like a personal joke of his."
"M-me? I didn't receive anything from him. Dad, I'm serious."
It all came back to Soul in a hurry, and he made a loud 'oh!" to everyone's surprise.
"He did, Maka. It was Kid who sent you that postcard."
"Kid? He did? Oh… oh!"
"I thought it was your mother, but I deduced otherwise after some observation."
"O-observation? Why would you want to… oh yeah, where did that postcard go?"
Soul turned green at that question and decided to change the subject. He had took it with him and had completely forgot to put it back into the apartment.
"Erm, a-anyway, good to know that it was Kid. Nice to see him again."
Maka stared at Soul who was strangely avoiding her gaze.
"Well boys and girls, waiting around here won't achieve anything. Why don't you guys hop away for a while, and I'll send for you when Kid's ready."
The 4 friends sat in their booth at the local café and were lost in their thoughts. Soul wanted to talk to Kid, Maka was amazed at Kid's transformation, Tsubaki was in awe and respect of Kid's soul, and Black Star wanted to beat the new Dean up.
Black Star piped up and his friends turned their attention to him.
"Where are Liz and Patti?"
Everyone chewed on this as they knew both Weapons went away with Kid all these years. If Kid returned, then the Weapons would have similarly arrived at Shibusen.
"Maka, aren't you good with soul perception? Find them."
"Black Star, I am not your personal GPS y'know."
"I'm sure they will turn up in their own time. They must be exhausted from their journey. Kid just returned today, and they must have too."
"But Tsubaki, nothing was conveyed to us. That's slightly weird."
"Soul, I'm certain they will tell us when the time comes."
"Can Maka Albarn, Soul Evans, Black Star, and Nakatsukasa Tsubaki, please report to the Dean's Office now?"
Maka paused slightly as they gathered in front of the door. For some reason, she was actually a little nervous. She wondered if her friends were feeling the same. She cleared her throat and took a deep breath.
Maka grasped the handle and twisted it to open the door, stepping inside as she did so. She stopped as she saw Kid standing there, a tall imposing figure against the sun behind him. All she could see were his dark yellow orbs, 2 toned and brilliant as they looked at her intently. Those eyes suddenly left her as she felt her friends coming into the room after her, and it was as if a spell was broken.
"It has been some time, my friends. I trust all of you are well."
Tsubaki bowed in response and smiled warmly.
"You have grown so much, Kid. We can hardly recognise you."
"So have you all, similarly. I had much trouble finding 4 of you in the crowd."
"Welcome back, Kid."
"Thank you, Soul."
Both guys exchanged a glance that conveyed genuine respect and friendship. It was a cool one. Maka almost had to smile at that, until she realised Kid's eyes stirred when they met with Black Star's.
Both almost smirked, but didn't. Kid could square up nicely with Black Star, and they were standing on equal grounds. They were definitely sussing out each other's strength and power quietly. Maka felt that she should break the friendly firepower.
"Kid, how have you been?"
When those eyes came back to her, Maka couldn't blink. Subconsciously, she could feel a connection click within her.
"I'd been very well, Maka. I believe you…"
All of them were curious as Kid began looking at Maka curiously. It was then Maka came to a horrible realisation of what was happening.
"K-KID! No, you can't…"
It was obviously too late as Kid's expression came to an enlightenment of sorts. He turned to look at Soul and cocked an eyebrow at him. Soul wasn't sure what to say to Kid, he needed a clue to what was going on.
"Kid, that was an infringement of my privacy!"
"I certainly didn't do anything wrong, Maka. Soul perception is how we greet people, isn't it?"
"Not everyone has it, and no, we don't do that to everyone!"
Maka was burning up and she felt naked. She covered her ears and wished she could be swallowed up somewhere. Soul smacked his forehead in realisation, and he silently prayed that Kid wouldn't be daft enough to blurt out the exact truth.
"Kid, don't you say anything. I ask of you."
Black Star gleefully jumped in at this point.
"Share, Kid! What did you seeeeee?"
Kid looked at Soul... at Maka... and back at Soul again. He sighed and casually placed his hands into his pockets. Even Tsubaki was beginning to fear the worst and was biting her fingernails. Suspicions all around, tension was high, and even though everyone knew the truth, the truth wasn't the truth until it was properly revealed and admitted by the 'culprits'.
"I'll have a private word with both of you on another occasion. In the meantime, Black Star, you need to stop poking your nose into other people's affairs."
"Well, you nosed around into Maka's private world!"
"I admit I did that, but soul perception has always been the right way to suss out somebody anyway. It hasn't been wrong… so, it's too bad if you'd done something in your life that you'd rather keep secret."
Maka and Soul found themselves avoiding their new Dean's glances.
"On that note, you're all dismissed. I am meeting the Vice-Dean in a while for handover duties, but I would rather wish to hang out with you guys. Well, especially after that revelation. No, Black Star, I'm not saying anything, really. I'll see you guys soon."
Kid wasn't surprised to see Soul and Maka awkwardly walking out of the room first. He had to suppress a chuckle until they'd all gone. After Tsubaki bowed in farewell and Black Star gave him a death glare, the door clicked shut and he sat down to close his eyes in thought.
"Ah, so Maka and Soul have succumbed. Consummated in full, and not just recently. Brought their partnership into a new light altogether. Maka's soul was burning brighter, stronger and with the perfect combination of Soul's."
He sighed and chuckled lightly to himself, wondering why he wasn't even surprised. After all, they were no longer children, no longer young, no longer innocent. Sombre eyes opened slightly, mellowed and scarred. His hands had tasted darkness. His mind had played with betrayal. His heart had tampered with fate. Women had thrown themselves at him during his expeditions. Older ones, younger ones, the ones with agendas, the ones who adored him as Shinigami-sama's son, the ones who knew nothing about him but wanted his body, the ones who strictly idolised him for the sake of idolatry.
Empty human shells seeking companionship.
Kid was severely annoyed with his father for giving him his name. 'Kid' certainly wasn't suitable for his frame now. As a man, it was strange to be called 'Kid'. His eccentric father refused to hear otherwise. He heard women whisper his name, beckoning him to touch them. He heard Madness shouting his name, willing him to embrace it. He heard his friends call him, extending hands of warmth and life. He responded when his Weapons asked for him, always his support and companions. He needed no other; man, woman or ghost.
But there was, no doubt, that tinge of sadness when he realised that Maka was truly bonded to Soul. The way he would probably never understand as he didn't need to, as a Shinigami. Would he someday know and taste the flavour? Much has changed since he was seconded, away from Shibusen.
He had a short encounter with Maka and Soul, when Maka was attacked on the streets in the open. He disguised himself and entered the fight, helping Maka out so that his identity remained secret. Kid had returned to pick up an important item from his father, but he needed to sneak into Shibusen without anyone's knowledge, in case Madness caught up to him. By pure chance, he wanted to help out the woman who was pursued by an attacker, but he was momentarily stunned when he realised it was none other than Maka Albarn. He could hardly recognise her.
"Maka stepping out from a boutique shop! She was shopping? What's going on?"
The rest was history, and he even had a glimpse of Soul, whom he realised had also grown much in stature and power. He wanted to stay on, but he had to go. If Madness caught on to his scheme, it would make his plan go to waste. Reluctantly, he bowed out but he never got the image of the new Maka out of his mind. During one of his trips, he picked out a postcard and coded it for her. It was difficult enough to slip away from Liz and Patti to do so.
He always knew it would happen between the Meister and her Weapon. Their progression was as natural as milk and honey. He had no right to sniff around, but he purposefully engaged a higher level of soul perception onto Maka, because he wanted to know for sure.
"The truth is always harder to accept, isn't it? Will I, someday, crave and experience what they have?"
Kid posed his query to the empty room and silence was all he received. Then, a sharp knock on the door, and Kid was up and ready for business.
Wow, I took ages with this chapter, and also some liberty too. Death The Kid is my favourite character, and I adore Miyano Mamoru, so he's the perfect character in Soul Eater. Will they ever have a Season 2? Anyway, I think I should write more often, but as always, life catches up on me unexpectedly.
Are you happy to be alive? :)