Well isn't this just ducky? Been awhile hasn't it my dear readers. I admit I got a bit distracted, and have been fervently working on my fictionpress account stories (same pen name for those interested) but yes back to my sweet guilty pleasure….
And for the record (because the law requires me to) I do not own either angelic layer, or any other "clamp" related work (but god knows I would if I could)
Angelic layer the seven sins saga chapter 12: the waking nightmare.
"…Ouch! Dammit! Put the wires in straight, you trying to get us killed Maverick?"
It was late, and aside from the usual sounds of the busier streets of Tokyo, the small darkly lit side street where Hatoko and Kotaro's family kept their home and dojo was fairly quite, minus the occasional, muffled sounds of three men crouched by a broken street light.
"I know what I'm doing Wallace, ye don' ave to keep yer baggering up! Ye ain't me ma, and this ain't me first go at it!"
"Ay, I'm not yer mother, and the lord be praised I'm not or I'd woulda keeled over by now from the shame! Just make sure ye don't get the wires criss-crossed, than move so O'leary can attach the cylinder."
The aforementioned O'leary was standing keeping watch around them, a denim jacket pulled close round his him, the collar high to keep his face obscured, not that any passerby would hear them properly unless the got with in five feet, and understood English enough to piece their thick Irish accents into proper japenese.
As soon as maverick was up to take the watch, O'leary was down on the ground and in a few seconds, with an expert hand, had a small metal cylinder attached to a s small set of wires attached and putty attached to the side of the dojo's front gate. And with the task down they adjusted the bushes around the front that had been holding to hide the tiny device and with absolute silence, vanished into the night.
Misaki fell onto her bed, in a dream like state and looked up at the ceiling for a moment before she grabbed her pillow hugging it to her and broke out in a fit of nervous giggles. Her moment with Ojiro was still fresh in her mind and it still felt like it might not have been real, like some kind of cruel mirage.
And yet she knew it had happened the strength of his arms around her, the gentle sound of his voice, the soft press of her lips against his skin….
She quickly shook her head, and fell back trying to rein in her thoughts so she could sleep, it had been a trying day in many ways and she was worn out.
So with a click of her lamp, and one last endearing gaze at Hikaru, sitting in a beam of moonlight on her dresser, she slipped into a quite calm sleep for the first time in some days.
The chirping of birds and the harsh, yet warm glare of sunshine drew Misaki slowly from her bed, and drowsily, the pajama clad girl made her way to the kitchen half-awake. It had been sometime since she had slept so well and was in no hurry today. The prelims were a week off, but for some reason that was only an after thought to her at the moment. A slow leisurely breakfast, and on the random whim of the good weather she was out of the house on a walk with no destination, just because….
She made her way over the pavement and sidewalks with out any real thought to where she was going, all she knew was that she felt ready to burst with happiness, and quite suddenly decided it wasn't fair to be enjoying it on her own. She wanted her friends with her.
After a few calls she had gotten a hold of both Sai, and Kaede, who were happy (or as happy as Sai can get which never seemed to be much to Misaki) to join her. The two had already been out and about and meet her halfway to the park.
As usual Sai had a thoughtful expression on her face, but if something was bugging her she kept it to herself.
After a bit of deliberation, Misaki decided that they would go and surprise Hatoko with a visit and ask if she would like to join them in person, rather than a phone call. And so the trio made there way lazily down the sidewalks, chatting about nothing in particular.
"And you really think it had something to do with the seven sins?" Misaki was questioning Sai as she recounted her and Hatoko's odd encounter last night, shaking her head looking flummoxed.
"I'm not sure what to think honestly. They had some pretty advanced hardware for a couple of kids… you said the guy you dueled yesterday was using an odd visor?"
"Yes… thin and black, with bat wings instead of angel wings like the normal visors."
This news only made Sai look more thoughtful as they walked, and Kaede, sensing the tension was quick to try and bring everyone's spirit's up.
"It's no good worrying now. Both duels ended in a win for our side, so what's it matter? We can ask Hatoko what she thinks when we get there. I'm sure she has some good thoughts."
Both Sai and Misaki agreed to let the subject drop for now, and made the rest of the way to the dojo. It was quite when they arrived (both of Hatoko's parents having been gone for a few days at a big martial arts tournament over seas) and considering the hour Kotaro was probably still in bed.
Sai pushed the button on the gate to ring the bell and let Hatoko know they where there, and a moment later her voice came over the static of the intercom.
"hello? I'm sorry but the dojo is closed for the week, is there something I can help you with?"
"Yea, you can let us in. It's chilly this morning."
"Sai? Is that you?"
"Yes and Kaede and suzuhara-san as well, so you gonna unlock the gate or shall I just throw Suzuhara-san over it?"
"Hold on. Mother and father just installed a new automated opening system, stand back a little please."
It was the tiniest of noises, a small beep, and a click… and than from nowhere seemingly half the gate was gone….
It took Sai a few moments to gather her self. If only the ringing in her ears would go away, it was awful loud, and the world could do her a favor and stop spinning…. It took her all of two or three more befuddled minutes to realize what had happened. Her head was on Kaede's lap who for some reason was pale as a ghost, and her lips were moving but the ringing in her head made it impossible to hear anything. And than she saw the smoke behind Kaede, and the smell of fire, with the distinct after note of gunpowder to it.
She tried to sit up but the world was still spinning and fell back, as her hearing slowly came back to her.
"…ai…ear me….can y..hear me?..."
"Sai! Please say something can you hear me Sai!
Sai was finally clear headed enough to take everything in, where Hatoko's gate had been there was now a small, steadily clearing pillar of grey and black smoke, several bushes around it were charred but the majority of any damage was to the gate it's self. The lkeft side had been blown from the hinges and the part of the wall it was built into was now missing a large jagged chunk from it. It had been a small explosion, but an explosion none the less, and with the enough force to both destroy a small part of the concrete wall, and send her back words. Luckily aside from some cuts and forming bruises, she seemed alright.
It was only after taking a better look around that she herself went as pale as Kaede…
Misaki was kneeling on the ground and it took Sai a moment to realize that her arm was bleeding, profusely, and that several good Samaritans on the street were yelling into cell phones for police and ambulances all at once in their panic.
During the blast, small as it was, Misaki had apparently taken a rather sizable blow from a piece of the wall as it blasted apart, and was currently just too shocked to notice the piece of concrete now lodged in her arm.
"Sai…oh good, I thought you might…have been….hurt…(thump).."
Misaki made it just to the end of her sentence before falling to the side, unconscious, her whole world swimming in a mix of pain and utter confusion.
For what seemed the longest time, she could only make out the things around her in tiny fragments. She heard people yelling and what might have been Hatoko, was she crying? It sounded like it.., but why? It was such a good day so far…. Than the sounds of sirens, and a few scattered images of men in white jackets, and hurried voices. Than gleaming lights, and eventually just quite darkness as her senses gave out and she gave into the strange tiredness coming over her.
It was bright out, that was her first thought as her eyes drifted open and the glaring sunshine assaulted her as she awoke. She wasn't entirely sure why everything felt out of sorts though until she lifted her hand to block the sun and saw the IV in her arm, and the bandages wrapped around it from wrist to elbow. After a moment she also felt the one around her head, and finally reality shoved it's self back into her mind as it came back to her in a torrent.
The gate had opened, and from seemingly nowhere so did the explosion. And she vaguely remembered pain, and Sai getting knocked back. But after that it was a blur, of course she could, considering where she was, fill in some the blanks herself.
Not that she had time to think over it for very long, because in an instant, faster than lightning, Hatoko, her face streaked with tears had lunged from nowhere onto the bed Misaki was in and buried herself in her best friends arms sobbing.
"Your okay…thank goodness your okay…. I don't know what I would do if…if.."
It took all of Misaki's strength to reach her good arm up and wrap it awkwardly but affectingly around her younger friend and held her as close as she could for the pain slowing crawling back into her extremities.
"Everybody! Shes awake!"
Tamo was rushing in the door yelling to what apparently turned out to be a sizable group now rushing in to greet the now overwhelmed girl. Everybody from Kaede, and a bandaged up Sai, to her worried but elated looking mother and Ichan, and even Ringo-san wearing her dark sunglasses to keep hidden from the media. And of course Ojiro, who had what had to be a thousand emotions mixed on his face, and kept surprisingly quite.
No matter how many times she asked, no one had a real answer for Miskai on what exactly had happened, and that police where investigating and that she needed to rest. For the time being Both Hatoko, and Kotaro would be staying in a hotel with their parents who where now on their way back from over seas, until the police got to the bottom of the explosion.
Finally after a good hour of visiting the group was forced to leave so Misaki could rest (it took two male nurses to pry Tamo from Misaki's bed who claimed she needed a full time body guard) but soon the rabble left, Ojiro being the last.
Not having said much of anything since he had come in he silently walked up to the side of her bed and before Misaki could say a word he was on his knees, with her hand in his as he kissed it, tears running down his face.
"Im sorry… I said I would be your prince.. and I couldn't keep you safe….im so sorry… I guess I really am useless. (SLAP!)
It had come from nowhere and for all his life he would never have expected Misaki to hit that hard. The imprint of her hand lingered on his face as his watery eyes meet hers, and he almost stumbled back from the fire he saw behind them.
"Don't you ever dare think that again. Your not useless, never in a thousand years would I think that of you, you couldn't have known that this would happen and if you dare blame your self for a second than I swear I wont talk to you ever again."
She said it sternly but the gentle smile on her face betrayed her tone as she sat as best she could and kissed Ojiro's cheek.
"That's not the sort of thought that my prince of the layer should be having."
With a dazed exrpression Ojiro stood up and nodded, his determination suddenly doubled, and a new spring in his step. Was he still upset of course, but as he left Misaki to rest, he couldn't help but feel new resolve build in him.
"That's right. I AM the prince of the layer, this is my kingdom, and someone has dared to harm MY princess… I don't have the time to waste being depressed. No one will say it but I know who's the source of all this sorrow, and on my title I swear that I'm coming for you sins."
As he left he also couldn't help but think of the last thing that Miskai had said.
"My prince of the layer."
"That's right, I'm her prince. And I won't fail her again."
"YOU STUPID, IGNORANT SON OF A JACKEL!"
Gluttony paced back and forth like a mad man, screaming at the top of his lungs, sounding somewhat hoarse as he only stopped shouting to occasionally grab some object near him and throw it violently against a wall as he starred daggers at the speaker phone on the sins meeting table.
The other six sins were all there, in there respective seats watching the spectacle but knowing better to get involved as Gluttony rushed forward and yelled right at the phone.
"What where you thinking? Using such a high grad of explosive for such a tiny bomb! I said scare tactics, that means more flash, less murder!"
The unworried and unapologetic sound of Wallace's voice came over the speaker as soon as Gluttony had finished a long stream of swearing and sat down in his chair with an angry "thump"
"Not my fault mate, O'leary loaded the blast cap, I just made the detonator. Sides' no one got knocked off, just shaken up, which if I recall was your orders. So end results are end results, you can either pay up, or we can bill ye for it later. But don't think 'bout' trying to stiff us Johnny. Ye remember what happened to Denis. Still don't walk right he don't, so you best just deal with it. Collateral damage that's all it is to me mate. (CLICK)
Gluttony was beside himself, and with a defeated expression slammed his head into the table and remained in this position for several moments before the muffled sound of his voice came out from under the curtain of his hair.
"So does anyone have "any" good news for me? Any at all?"
It was envy to speak up first, a look of pure enjoyment on his face at Gluttony's misery.
"As a matter of fact yes, for a change. You'll be happy to know that the little project you asked me to work on is finally out of the trial phase, and is now ready,"
At this the clown faced man was up off the table, a humongous grin now plastered on him.
"You're certain? It's finally ready?"
"As sure as I'm a handsome beast. It took near forever though, and a lot of set backs, but I can say now with actual assurance that it's ready. Truthfully if it hadn't been for all the new data we gathered from all those fights and hardware tests it wouldn't have been this soon."
Envy dug into his trench coat and removed a tiny bottle, hermetically sealed, with a tiny, oval shaped, bight green pill at the bottom. Gluttony took that bottle and a look of pure pleasure came over his face.
"Perfect, how long before you can start production?"
"Another week, give or take, but we can't exactly mass produce it. I can maybe make a few hundred at a week. But I'm sure that figured into your palns?"
"Oh trust me, we wont be needing to worry about that. We aren't going for a global market after all. Just Tokyo for now, than if things go well we can worry over the numbers. Just everybody remember your part in this and will all go smooth as silk."
The mixed sound of the sin's laughter (minus Sloth you at best just could smile happily from his wheel chair next to gluttony) filled the room as they all gazed with different kinds of excited expressions at the tiny pill, as if all their dreams rode on whatever promise came with it….
End ch 12
Well that's another one down. Hope you all enjoyed it. I know I take forever in-between things but it isn't intentional, I just get bogged down with too many things at once sometimes…. So yes, please read and review. And fare well.