They said he would be alright.
I had watched as they carried his limp form on a stretcher through the dark halls of the order as they carried him to the infirmary. His usual slightly tanned skin was purple from bruises across his body, and what wasn't bruised was deadly pale.
And there was blood. So much blood, that I had immediately begun to feel sick.
I had screamed. His name was ringing through the long halls as I cried out for him. The finders attempted to hold me back as I screamed and punched at them to let me go so that I could go to his side. The finders were persistent, but so was I. I didn't even consider the fact of using my innocence to cut them down and make my way through. I mind was jumbled and hazy, everything I saw was a blur except for the damaged form that was being carried further and further away from me.
I had kept screaming for them to bring him back, yelling at them, begging that they let me go, tears trailing down my redden cheeks. I was in complete hysterics and I could barely hear them over my own shouting as they attempted to comfort me. But one sentence I did hear them say, that one sentence that kept ringing through my head, and I wanted nothing more than to throw my entire trust into it.
He will be alright.
How was he?
I couldn't help but ask Komui that. The feeling in the pit of my gut told me that I shouldn't have asked, that I should have just kept on pretending that it wasn't really that serious, but I couldn't help it, I had to know.
Komui stopped for a moment, his face a mix of expressions, as if he didn't quite know which was the exact one he wanted to use. He eventually smiled down at, giving me a small pat to the top of the head as he answered me.
"He's going to be okay. Everything will be alright."
I nodded my head in confirmation, and with a wave of his hand, he shooed me off, telling me that he had paper work that he need to get done, and I was distracting him.
I gave another nod before turning around and leaving, but not before I saw him drop the fake smile and bite down on his lip, his eyebrows furrowed in concern.
And I couldn't help but notice that he still had that look in his eyes as if there was some great burden and knowledge hidden in them. It was as if his eyes couldn't lie even though he could play the perfect mask of any emotion he chose.
His eyes were more than enough to tell me the truth, but I still couldn't help but want to keep lying to myself and to keep pretending that everyone was right.
He was going to be okay.
The first time I got to see him after they had first carried him off to the infirmary was when Lenalee suddenly stopped me in the halls. She had suddenly grabbed onto my arm, quickly glancing around to see if anyone else may be there before suddenly pulling me down another hall.
Her eyes were red and there were tear stains on her cheek, suggesting that she had been crying. She continued to pull me along until we suddenly reached a door that I had never noticed before, but it looked just like any other door in the order, so it was no surprise that I had paid no heed to it before.
Lenalee gave one more quick worried glance around before pushing the door open. Inside seemed to be just like any other normal room before she suddenly went to the closet and open in up. Inside, I could see a small stone staircase leading upwards. Lenalee immediately began to climb it, and without hesitation, I followed her.
It continued upwards until the stairs ended and the floor evened out. What little light we had before had completely disappeared once we had entered the closet, so I had no idea as to how far we had been traveling nor as to exactly how long.
We eventually stopped when I had bumped into Lenalee's back as she stopped. We silently stood there for a moment before I heard stone moving against stone and a brilliant white light appear.
"This is a secret door to the infirmary." informed Lenalee as we stepped into the clean white room. The concerned look on her face now looked even worse as if she was dreading something.
"I…I think you should see him…." Lenalee mumbled, looking down to avoid my gaze. I couldn't bring myself to say anything, so I nodded instead, even though she couldn't see with her eyes diverted away from me.
Lenalee pointed towards one of the beds, a curtain drawn up around it. I walked past her and clenched the curtains into my fist. There was a moment of hesitation as I felt a sudden desire to vomit and flee at the same time. I choked the feeling down before slowly pulling the curtains aside.
My whole world seemed to have suddenly stopped at that moment as I stared at the figure in the bed. He was in just as terrible of a condition as I had last seen him, if not worse. My hand shook as I reached towards him. I gently ran my hand through his hair, my fingers getting caught in a clump of hair that was still stuck together by the dried blood. I pulled my hand back before reaching out again, picking out as much of the dried blood as I could.
Once done with cleaning his hair, I reached for his hand, gently holding it in mine. He had never come across as a fragile person to me before, but at that moment, I felt that I could crush his hand just from holding it a little too tightly.
I don't know how long I stood there beside him, never once letting go of his hand. I just stood there, watching him, waiting like I was expecting something to happen. Maybe I actually was hoping for something, anything to happen, but I knew deep down that nothing would.
How stupid I was to wish for that.
His body suddenly began to convulse, trembling so hard that I could practically hear his bones hitting against each other. I could hear Lenalee screaming behind me, but it sounded like nothing more than a faint murmur over my own terrified cries.
I was suddenly being pushed aside as nurses rushed past me. Someone was once again pulling me away from him, and once again, I was screaming for them to let me go. I needed him right now, and he needed me.
In the briefest moment, I saw the wall of nurses break free and I saw his face. He was coughing, gasping for air that wouldn't reach his lungs. Blood suddenly shot out from between his pale trembling lips, dying his face a gruesome red. The nurses suddenly moved, blocking my view of him once again.
I began to struggle even harder in my attempts to get to him. I could taste my own bitter tears on my tongue and lips as I continued to scream for him as they pulled me further and further away. They let me go once they had pulled me out of the infirmary, and I dropped to the ground, my legs refusing to hold me up.
I felt arms wrap around me from my position on the cold hard floor, terrified sobs as Lenalee held onto me. We stayed like that for a long time, neither one moving as we cried. Several people attempted to cheer us up, but they all eventually left when they noticed that their efforts were fruitless.
The sounds in the infirmary eventually went silent, and nothing could be heard except for our gentle sobs and pounding hearts. The door of the infirmary was eventually opened, and Lenalee and I looked up as we heard the hard taping of one of the nurses shoes as she walked towards us. She stopped a good distance away from us, pity in her eyes as she silently stood before us.
The nurse looked down towards the ground and gave a small bow of her head as if in apology.
"I'm sorry. He's dead."
I hated myself at that moment. It was like the day Mana had died all over again. I didn't do anything to help him, I couldn't have. But I should have at least been there beside him as he died, and I didn't even do that much. If I had fought just a little harder, if I had tried just a little more, then maybe…maybe it would have made a difference. But I didn't. I wasn't there for him while he was dying.
I hated myself so much.
I didn't go to the funeral. I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I did visit him before the funeral though. His body was already laid down in the casket, his usually unruly hair was, for once, neatly combed. I had once heard that when someone dies, it looks as if they are sleeping. When ever I had seen someone die before, it was usually from akuma poisoning, so I had never actually seen their dead form lying before me, but who ever had said such a thing was wrong. He was pale, just like how I had always imagined a corpse, and purple bruises could still be seen staining his skin. He looked so uncomfortable in the casket, like his body was crunched up in there and unable to move.
He looked terrible.
I brushed my finger through his hair, something I had always loved to do. I was somewhat satisfied with the fact that at least there was no more blood in his hair. I pushed his hair around a little, trying my best to get it into its usual messy style. It was a terrible attempt, but it was the most I could do.
I stared at him for one last moment, trying my best to memorize as much of him as I could since I knew this would be the last time I would truly get to see him.
With a gentle kiss to his cold pale lips, I finally turned around and walked away, not once looking back to see the form of the man I had once loved lying in the casket.
I didn't cry.
Maybe I was in denial over his death so the full effect just hadn't hit me yet, but I couldn't bring myself to cry. It felt as if my eyes were completely dry of tears.
It definitely felt like I wanted to cry though. My chest felt tight, and my heart constantly felt like it was aching, but I still couldn't bring myself to do anything that might be able to relive the pain even a little.
Maybe this was a way to punish myself for not having been there for him. If it was, I deserved it without a doubt.
I admit to the fact that I had been surprised when they decided to bury him. All other exorcists were to be cremated, but since he was a bookman, he was allowed an exception. Even then I was still surprised, since bookmen were always to be just viewers of history and never really there as actual people who would take part in the event. But customs were customs, and Bookman had demanded that his apprentice was to be buried.
The body was to be buried in one of the open fields that were hidden in the small forest that surrounded the order. Besides having his apprentice buried and not cremated, Bookman had no further instructions, so anything else that was wanted could be added there. It was eventually decided that a headstone would be placed there as well as a cross. The idea of leaving his innocence there was immediately shot down, so they eventually decided to drape his favorite orange scarf on the cross instead.
It would be their last gift to him.
I went to visit him at every opportunity I had. His grave site had became a sort of sanctuary for me, since I had always chose to spend my time there between missions rather then being inside the order. Ever since he had left, the order had begun to feel like nothing more than a dark prison holding me captive, constantly reminding me of horrid memories that I would much rather forget, but being at his grave would always make me feel free once more.
It was the only time where I could feel even the slightest spark of my old self again.
Admittedly, I got lost the first few times I went to visit him, but now I knew the way well enough to have walked it with my eyes closed. I would sit there for hours beside him. I would always talk to him even though I knew he wouldn't be able to hear me, something that I did that would always help calm my nerves, and sometimes I would even reach out and gently run my fingers over the grave, pretending that he might be able to feel my touch.
It was the only time that I could still feel his presence beside me again.
And every time I would leave his grave, the trees would suddenly rustle from the wind, his voice being carried on the breeze as it would whisper into my ear, reminding me of the words he would always say to me.
"I love you Allen Walker, my angel."
I love you Lavi, my beloved.