*Just thought I`d point out that the ending is not a yaoi (for those who don`t know, `yaoi`means gay) ending. It is friendship. FRIENDSHIP.*
He sat back with his arms crossed behind his head, asking himself what could have possibly gone wrong. No answer. Of course there wouldn't be. It was never this easy.
After a second chance at life, it was taken away from him again. They wouldn't believe him. Not after he'd broken a rule. She'd had an advantage. But it was taken away from both of them, thanks to that damned mutt. It was his fault- his fault she'd lost her life for no reason. It could have gone to good use, but no. It didn't, because as far as he was concerned, she was dead.
There was a knock on the door.
"Zeffan, open up!" The voice behind the door commanded. Zeffan let him knock for another minute, before he picked the lock open.
"You're not going to be able to avoid this, Zeff." Gage said, shaking his head, causing his short, black and red spikes to wave around on his head. Zeff flinched, half expecting one of them to fly off his head and poke him in the eye. His green eyes searched Zeff's, looking for hesitation. The blue spirals were almost hypnotic in a sense.
"I'm not trying to avoid anything." Zeff semi-snapped, fed up with Gage's constant warnings.
To his dismay, Gage was going to be his Representative in the Council. Gage had a very good reputation for reasoning with the Council members, and getting his clients the Justice that most of them didn't even deserve. A very small number of Offenders were sentenced to Chilling with gage as their Rep. It rarely happened.
Chilling was the process in which the Council only sentenced the worst of Offenders too. The process would consist of sending said offender a chamber. The temperatures in this chamber would reach beyond the extremes. It wouldn't bother the person one bit- until they were dead. The process would freeze off the bindings—the tattoos on their backs. You could not simply go to a tattoo parlour and remove them- no. They had to be frozen off. The only thing is, without the tattoos, the Offender will die within the minute. The ink is the only thing binding them to this Earth.
The Chilling process was the only known way to kill a Fallen Angel once and for all.
And even though Gage had the best reputation for reaching a reasonable conclusion in the Council, he was still worried. Gage would constantly tell Zeff that there was a good chance he could be sentenced to Chilling, regardless of whether the "life transaction," as he liked to call it, worked out or not. He would say that they had to word everything carefully, seeming as lying was impossible. They could smell out lies- literally.
Zeff would tell Gage that it was no big deal, and that they would understand. He would shake his head, telling him not to worry. And on the days when Gage would get impatient, Zeff would recite every reason they couldn't sentence him. And Gage would tell him, "Zeffan, they don't care if her life was taken or not. The point is, you intended to. When you saw her, you were aware that she was going to live forever. You did it for personal gain, because she had an advantage."
"I'm not trying to avoid it." Zeff lied. Gage raised an eyebrow.
"I'm not lying!" he lied again. Gage rolled his eyes. "They're not going to do anything. I'm innocent."
Again, Gage shook his head. "Look, kid. Around 265 years ago, I was almost busted for feeding off a girl who led a really healthy life style. She still had quite a few years ahead of her. At the time I marked her as my prey, I had no clue. But when I was at the council, they didn't care. The point is, they are not going to go easy on you, just because it didn't work out. You'd meant to feed off her, Zeff. You're in shit."
Zeff refused to believe it.
"Now hurry the hell up and get dressed. Nicely. We've got to be there soon." He gave Zeff one last look, sympathy in his eyes. "I feel sorry for you, man."
"State your name." The Council leader ordered.
"Zeffan." He sat still in the chair directly in front of them all. Gage sat right beside him and sighed.
"And your Human name?" She asked. Regardless of how harsh and strict she could be, the Council Leader was beautiful. She was among the oldest (but looking not more than 23) in their community, with long white and black hair that hung past her waist in spiralling curls. Her simple blue eyes held a hint of fear for each of the Offenders, with a red stripe that crossed through both of them. Her pale skin held an angelic quality which went perfectly with the small, black tattooed line of dots that framed down her face, from her eyes to her jaw. Overall, she was able to will the truth out of anyone who walked through the thick wooden doors.
"Angelo." Gage nudged his side, "Angelo De Rossi." The woman nodded.
"And on what count are you brought before my Council and I today?" She asked. She would be waiting for his lie.
A lump was stuck in his throat as he spoke, "I am accused of purposefully marking someone with an advantage." She nodded once more.
"I see you use the term 'accused,'" A Council member beside the woman said, "I understand that you think you are wrongfully brought under trial, yes?" Zeff nodded. No lies there. That was the truth.
"And how did this human have an advantage?" The Council Leader asked. She knew, but she wanted to make sure he would not lie, using keywords that she would look for in his statement.
"Because she wasn't human." He answered simply. She waited for more. "She had the advantage of immortality."
"What was her name?" The man asked. Zeffan sighed.
"Renesmee Cullen." He said. The man nodded.
"The Cullens." The Council leader said. "I am familiar with the name. They are vampires, am I correct?" Zeff nodded. She continued, "It is impossible to mark a vampire, let alone feed off of them. How could this event possibly have occurred?"
Zeff considered lying, to say that it wasn't possible, and that it didn't happen. But she would know. He had to stick as closely to the truth as possible.
"She was not like the rest of the family. She was only part vampire. The other part was human. I believe that's how the marking was capable." He said, remembering her telling him what she was.
"Only part vampire? That isn't possible." She looked beside her for confirmation.
"That's what I thought too. But apparently she was." Zeff explained, using the silence as an advantage.
Again, the man spoke, making note of small things in his speech, "You refer to her in the past tense. Why is this?"
"And yet you have not gained anything from it?" That was what Zeff wanted to hear. "Why?"
"The Cullen's have an alliance with the shape-shifters in their area. These shape-shifters are capable of a different type of marking, called Imprinting. It is almost as a 'love at first sight' rule, similar to ours. Only they don't have the ability to choose, and it is to protect that person- not to take their lives. His Imprint on Renesmee interfered with my marking. I had already preformed the Extraction, but his Imprint was meant for her to be alive and well. It stopped me from getting her years, but her life still drained away. To my knowledge, she has passed."
"Actually, we have gathered notes on the Cullen's as you awaited trial." The man said, again. "The girl is alive and well. It appears that they have figured out a way to stop the Extraction from completely occurring."
Zeff didn't know why, but he smiled. He smiled a giant smile. She was alive!
"However," The woman said, "You still intended on taking her life. Are you aware of our penalty for this?" Zeff almost shook his head, before Gage stood up.
"Mistress," he addressed her, "Might I just add that Chilling is unnecessary?"
She raised an eyebrow, "Explain your reasoning."
"Zeffan has been alive for 87 years. He is going to die within the next few years anyhow. I think that the chilling would be unnecessary. On a side note, I also think he cared deeply about Renesmee Cullen. He'd marked her when he did not personally know her. As time went on, he had gained a relationship with her. He was not intent on taking her life at that moment, but as we all know, if he didn't, they would both die in time, due to the connection since he already marked her. After the few years he has left, she would have died at the same time, no gain for either of them. He was reluctant." The woman nodded again.
"However, he was aware that the girl had an advantage at the time of marking, correct?"
"Uh, yes. But-"
"Then that is all we need to hear." She said, narrowing her eyes. She turned in the direction of Zeff. "Zeffan, you are hereby sentenced to Chilling."
Zeff went numb. He was dreaming. He needed to wake up. This couldn't happen... this couldn't happen! He turned his head in the direction of his Representative. He was supposed to get him justice!
Gage looked down with guilty eyes. He had failed. That rarely happened. He wanted to apologize, but was interrupted by the voice of them woman again.
"Please clear your seats. Why have one more trial to judge, and then Zeffan shall be sent to the chamber. Maine, begin to cool it, please." Zeff found it hard to get up. Gage tried helping him, but Zeff couldn't take his help. Not anymore. He got up reluctantly.
'Why aren't I waking up?'
They walked to the side of the room and waited. Zeff wasn't waking up. As the next person walked into the room through the thick wooden doors, Zeff knew that it was no nightmare. He was going to die.
However, one thing clouded his mind at that moment- that person look familiar. He looked about Zeffan's "age," and held some quality that made him look familiar... as if a distant memory. He'd never seen this stranger before though. Had he?
For some reason, Zeff thought that this stranger's green and orange hair shouldn't be that colour. He thought it should be a soft brown, a familiar shade to him. And longer. His black eyes look out of place with the small yellow ring that surrounded them. They should just be black. His skin tone was familiar, minus the jagged-pattered tattoos that framed his face. But why? Something was so familiar about him, but he couldn't put his finger on it. And now, he never would have the chance.
"State your name." The Council leader ordered.
"My name is Xavier." The boy said. His vice struck Zeff somehow, almost at the heart.
"And your Human name?" The woman asked.
"Yerushalimsky." The boy answered. The name sounded familiar to Zeff, as if maybe it had been mentioned once. Possibly this was one of the rare but notorious trouble makers everyone within their community has heard of? No.
"Full name." The other Council member said. The boy sighed an impatient sigh. He just wanted to get this over with.
Zeff's heart went still. Shaul? No- it couldn't be! He was gone! It had taken Zeff so many years to get over that fact... he couldn't be back. He just couldn't. It wasn't him. He couldn't be. Could he? Zeff lost all feeling.
"On what count are you brought before my Council and I?" The woman asked.
"I am brought upon you for acting with intent of revenge." He didn't cover it up. He was honest- just like Shaul was. But no, he wasn't! Zeff had to remember that. Shaul was gone. This boy just coincidentally looked, acted and talked like him. And he had the same name. But it wasn't possible.
"And why have you committed this felony?" She asked. He looked away.
"In my passed life, I was of Jewish descent. My mother was taken into a concentration camp, whom I found out later was soon transferred into an extermination camp. My friend had understood what I was going through; he was not Aryan himself. He took my in when I needed shelter, but as soon as the Nazi party started rounding the neighbourhood, his ethnicity was used against him as permit to search his apartment. I could not remain inconspicuous to their efforts. Once they had located me, my friend and I were sent straight the extermination sector within the Aschwitz-Birkenau camp. I was sent to a gas chamber as my friend was wheeled away into their experimental room. As they shut the door, I realized that this was the camp my mother was transferred to.
When I awoke to my second chance at life, my first intent was to get my revenge on those who have murdered my Mother and friend. So I did."
The Council leader nodded, but the other Council member spoke up.
"Your Mother's name was...?"
"And what was your friend's name?"
The woman's eyes flitted toward Zeffan. Could there be a connection?
"Boy," she addressed Zeff. Xavier's eyes followed her gaze. As he saw the boy she was addressing, his heart stopped as well. Why did he look so familiar? He looked a lot like his former friend.
"Yes?" Replied Zeff. Again, another stop of Xavier's heart. His voice was hard but clear; much like Angelo's used to be.
"How were you killed?" she asked. Zeffan looked down, trying to remember.
"Excuse me if I do not state things clearly. It has been a while." He said. "My story is similar to Xavier's. In fact, it's the same. But I do not think-"
"What was your friend's name?" The man asked. Zeff blinked.
"Your previous name was Angelo, correct?"
"Yes, but again-"
The woman leaned back into her chair, something related to a smile on her face. It was tainted however. Xavier's eyes went wide in realization. It was Angelo. Angelo!
And that's when Zeffan... no, Angelo saw the stranger's truth. He was not Xavier. He was Shaul. His long lost friend. He was alive! For now. Zeff could feel a stinging in his eyes.
"How did you get your revenge on those who have harmed your loved ones, Xavier?" The woman said, a little bit more softly.
"I took the years of their descendants." He answered simply, but his eyes were still on Angelo. "I was fully aware of the rules at the time I committed the act. I am aware that I deserve the punishment I am about to receive. My work here is done. My second chance was used in a positive way, at least in my context."
The woman nodded again. She apprieciated his honesty, but since he was being honest, she also knew that he was right, and that he deserved his punishment.
"Xavier, you are hereby sentenced to Chilling." Her voice rang. Shaul got up and walked over to the side of the room that Angelo was on. About to say the words, he was interrupted by the voice of the man.
"Xavier shall go first. Order goes by the degree of Offence." Shaul looked at Angelo one last time, before stepping into the chamber. No... It wasn't going to end like this- not again!
"Mistress, I know I am in no position to make a request," he said, she looked as if she were about to say something, but Angelo didn't have the time to hear it. "In our past life, Xavier and I had a connection. We died separately, only getting one last view of each other before he stepped into a chamber very similar to the one here, and I was taken away. We were given a second chance at life because we both died an incomplete death. This scenario, 70 years ago, was the feeling of emptiness. The reason we were brought back. We died without each other- and we were all we had. I have not seen my friend in those 70 years. Again, I know I'm in no position to speak, but could I please just have one favour? Could we die together this time around?"
She was taken aback by his request, and a few seconds later, the man spoke.
"Mistress, I do not believe this request would cause any harm. It would also make things go by much faster. What he says is true- they were given a second chance because of this. They at least deserve to spend their final minute together."
The woman sighed. "Very well." She said, "Zeffan, you may proceed to the chamber."
Angelo walked with a lighter heart to the chamber, happy to be dying this time. Right before the door closed, and all light was lost, Angelo could see Shaul smile. And Angelo smiled too.
"Shaul," he whispered, because he couldn't do anything else.
"Angelo," Shaul whispered back. Although they couldn't see each other, they walked into each other's arms.
"I thought you were gone forever." Angelo said. It was getting difficult to breath.
"Yes. Same here." It was silent for a few seconds more.
"If only I'd known you were still here, Shaul!" Angelo said as he released his grasp. Shaul nodded, and felt that Angelo would know, regardless of the blackness of the chamber.
"Just one more day would have been enough." Shaul said. And for some odd reason, they both laughed.
They laughed because it was ironic that they were in this situation again. It was ironic that this time, they were the ones killing people. It was ironic that after a second chance because of this very reason, they were thrown right back into this situation. And it was ironic that they had never known each other as Xavier and Zeffan, but only "My dead friend, Shaul." And "My dead friend, Angelo." It was ironic that they were crying happy tears, when they were supposed to be said ones. The ink streamed down their faces, and even though they couldn't see one another, they were aware of it. They stepped into one another's arms for the last time.
"I'll miss you." Shaul said.
"I love you." Angelo said.
One last tear fell, and everything went black.