A/N: Italics are Suzaku's thoughts.

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And really, there wasn't anything that could be compared to him.

I hate you…

Such an idiot.

I really hate you, Lelouch…

How could he? Smile? Who had ever heard of such a thing? Smiles didn't fit on Lelouch; only those condescending smirks did. Anything else was unnatural - but right now there was a smile, a peaceful smile…

Why are you doing this? Idiot…

It hurts, Lelouch. You're hurting me. Tell me to stop. Tell me to stop, and I swear, I'll bring you to the hospital and end this madness right now.

It was easy to push the long sword in – too easy, in fact, and Suzaku wondered if the teen had intentionally sharpened it himself. It wouldn't be unlike him. Probably he'd thought that a spray of blood would be more convincing than a slow trickle.

The idiot.

As uncaring as always, about my feelings…You know exactly what I feel, don't you?

Yet you don't care. Why, you never do.

Then he was falling, impaling himself onto the sword as Suzaku stood by and simply watched. Indeed, he even grasped the hilt and slid it through his own back – how it must have hurt, but his face gave no indication of it.

His forehead now resting on Suzaku's chest, he could finally shed his mask, and he whispered raggedly, "This is also a punishment for you…"

Stop this, Lelouch, there's still time. You can stop this.

"You will be the defender of justice and wear a mask forever…" His voice was weaker, and he stumbled slightly, but not enough to be noticed by the mass of people watching this scene, their eyes drawn to the mask of Zero and the sword – the tip of the sword that was poking obscenely out of Lelouch's back.

No, please, Lulu. Don't do this to me…

"You will no longer be able to live as Kururugi Suzaku…" Almost, lovingly, tenderly, the teen stroked Suzaku's cheek through the expressionless mask with the hand that previously clutched at his wound. Behind the vile mask he leaned into the ghost touch, craving more of his childhood friend… before…

"You will sacrifice all of your own happiness for the world…"

Still you smile, Lulu…

"…Eternally…"

I'm scared, Lulu… Just stop, tell me to end this…

Suzaku swallowed his tears, and murmured hoarsely, "I accept… that Geass…" His throat hurt, his head hurt, and his heart hurt. It was amazing that a single person – Lelouch – could still cause him so much pain, for had he not wished for this? To rid the world of this tyrant by his own hands?

I know the script, Lulu. Tell me one more time, that this is really what you want.

A smear of blood was left as Lelouch's hand dropped away from Zero's mask. Zero. Suzaku hated it. The final signal –

In one smooth move he withdrew the sword, flinging Lelouch backwards and sending droplets of blood flying into the air. Even at that moment, he was surprised by how well his friend could lie – his countenance was perfectly constructed; it concealed his true feelings completely, and what was shown to the rest of the world was just a power-hungry, albeit intelligent monster, who was about to die by the hand of the bringer of justice...

Shock. Disbelief. And a slight smirk that was only barely visible at the corner of his mouth – everything had gone according to plan again...

I'm sorry Lulu… Lelouch… Zero… whichever persona you are wearing right now… There is no more going back…

I wish there were.

A way. Any way. I'd agree immediately, regardless of the consequences, to bring you back.

Lelouch stumbled on the dais, lurching forward unsteadily, then falling, sliding, tumbling head-over-heels down the Britania flag, leaving a trail of blood behind him.

Does it hurt, Lelouch? But then again you would have known it; you planned this from the very start.

He skidded to a stop in front of Nunally, whose eyes were wide open – opened in time to see the death of Lelouch, her brother. She bent forward, almost in curiosity, over his body - for it was a body now, nothing more.

Her eyes traveled over his wound, the blood still freely flowing out; his chest, his neck, all the way up to his tousled hair, the raven black hair that had made countless girls fall in love with him. His amethyst orbs were half-lidded, a detestable farce of laziness.

"Brother?" she said, waiting for a reply that never came. Gently, she touched his hand, covering the slender digits with her own childish ones.

"No…" she gasped as realization came. "It can't be, Brother… all along, you were…"

Clutching his bloodstained hand to her face, she choked, "Brother, I love you!" Mustering up the last of his strength, Lelouch breathed, "Yes… I…

"Destroy… worlds… Create… worlds… "

Dramatic to the end, Lelouch. As always.

But this time there won't be applause. There won't be screams for encores. There won't be… there won't be you…

And slowly, his eyes closed.

"No! Brother! No! Open your eyes!" Finally the tears spilled out of Nunally's eyes, down her cheeks and onto Lelouch's dress shirt.

White. White was supposed to be pure. Lelouch was black and grey and every other color, but white he had never been. He never would have the chance to be.

Lelouch, why?

Why did I do this – why did I accept this – tell me, Lelouch! Tell me all over again why you have to die, and even if it will only delay your death by a few seconds, still I want to hear it again!

I don't want this mask, Lelouch, It's yours. It's always been; it always will be, and it is empty… I am empty.

"BROTHER!"

Leaving again, Lulu? Our time has been short. Why won't you stay for a few more days? A few hours? Minutes?

Seconds, even.

You're always throwing me behind. I'm like that snail and you're like the bird; you fly off the cliff and I stay waiting for your return. One day you won't return. I will still be there. Staring into the horizon, afraid to jump, because once I jump I will fall and my shell will shatter.

Your feathers will float down to me and all I can ever do is…

…Stare up at your magnificence.

…Cry for him, Nunally, because nobody else will.

…I can't.

…Zero can't.

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fin.

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