Author's notes: Well it's been over a year and a half since I ended "The Parasite" and announced I was considering doing a sequel. I have finally decided on how to do it. The Parasite will now be considered book one of a three part series. This is the beginning of the second part titled "The Factions." Now that I know exactly what I want to do with the story as a whole I will likely go straight into the final "book" as soon as this one is done in a couple of months. No promises.
I do not own D. Grayman.
Chapter one Identity Crisis
Allen Walker pulled himself off the factory floor of O. & U. only slightly worse for wear. His uniform, such as it was, was tattered and bloodstained. And that had been before Lenalee had gotten a hold of him.
The young exorcist had a sneaking suspicion he should neglect telling Chief Komui exactly how his jacket had been ripped in two. It would be much safer for his continued health that way.
'After all, that man is a walking sister complex,' Allen thought.
Lenalee on the other hand, looked pristine standing next to him. This despite the fact that she too had fought a ridiculous amount of akuma as well as the Earl. It wasn't fair. The slim, dark-haired girl had on a midnight blue dress uniform and a silver necklace she had received from a child she saved a few days ago. Not a single hair was out of place, and her face seemed to glow as she smiled at him.
'How does she do that?' He thought.
He sighed as Lenalee turned towards the door. "It's time to go," she said. "Everyone is going to be wondering where we are."
This was the part the white-haired exorcist dreaded the most. By now, Reever would have a video golem setup prepared at the safe house they were using a few blocks away. No doubt the scientist would have contacted Komui by now to tell him everything was O.K.
'And that Lenalee confessed her feelings to me...' It was funny, Allen thought. Just a couple of hours ago he had been dead on the floor. Literally. Thanks to the 14th , he was alive again.
'And when Komui finds out that I spent the last two hours being kissed to within an inch of my new-found life, I'll be dead again. This is going to be the shortest resurrection story ever.' He could have wept.
Lenalee turned towards him and saw that he wasn't following. "What's wrong?" She asked. A look of concern growing on his face.
"It's uh...nothing." Allen lied, rubbing the back of his head and laughing nervously. Lenalee frowned but said nothing as she grabbed his arm pulling him along side her. They walked together through the shattered remains of the dusty factory. Feeling Lenalee's warmth beside him, Allen let himself relax. How bad could it be?
Reever was biting his nails.
General Cloud, Krory, and Rouvelier had all come back a long time ago. They said that Allen and Lenalee were both fine, and they would be back in a while.—though Rouvelier had been strangely quiet.
It didn't take much more than the amused smile on Cloud's face and Rouvelier's awkward fidgeting for Reever to read between the lines. He felt happy for Lenalee, but a deep swell of pity was forming in the pit of his stomach for Allen.
'Walker-san,' Reever thought, 'I'll try and say something nice at your funeral, it was cruel of God to make that girl fall in love with you.'
He hoped Komui would leave something of the boy for them to bury after he was done tearing him limb from limb. Until then, he really wanted to see Allen's innocence. From what the others had told him, he had stolen the Earl's sword—the 14th's really he supposed, causing his right arm to change just like his left.
'Fascinating. I'll have to do a full study when he gets back. This might explain why his innocence was killing him before, and why it always acted so strangely...'
He flipped a switch on a video monitor preforming one last test before opening the connection. The dark wood panelled room of the safe house made seeing quite difficult, especially at night. Reever had only an oil lamp sitting on the pine-wood desk behind him to give off any light besides the monitor, and the oil was old. It stank and filled the room with a hazy smoke burning Reever's eyes.
Apparently, the finders had not used this place in quite some time before the current operation. He was just about to contact Komui when he heard a knock.
"Come in," Reever said. "The door is open."
"Excuse me Reever-san, it's me, Allen. I'm back."
Reever turned to see the young boy enter the room. His right arm was alabaster white with a pale green cross along the back of the hand. A perfect inversion of his left, just like the others had said.
'The events that surround this boy just keep getting stranger,' Reever thought. He pushed all thoughts of the video conference out his mind. The tests needed on Allen's innocence needed to be done. Now.
"Allen, I'm glad you are here. I need to give you a check up," Reever said.
"Uh, alright." Allen replied, "but I'm fine now. Really."
"We don't know that for sure yet." The scientist turned and motioned for the boy to follow him into the basement. Reever forced his mind to focus solely on the tests as he checked the boy's vital signs, bio metrics, and preformed every sort of measurement on his arms possible outside of the main headquarters.
Allen told him his version of what had happened while he worked, and Reever's questions were only compounded.
When the boy was finished, he was amazed. "So you say you were actually dead?" Reever asked.
"Well yeah, I guess so Reever-san. At least, that's what Mana and I told me." Walker replied, a curious look on his face.
"I see." Reever said. He wondered if the boy was aware of his curious use of pronouns just then. He said nothing but added it to the report.
"Well you should get some rest Allen. I'll file my report with Chief Komui in a moment." He added.
"Sure." Allen replied. "Just uhh about Lenalee and I could you—well..."
Reever smiled. "Don't worry, I'll let you and Lenalee discuss that with him in person when we get back. Good night."
Reever watched as the boy turned and walked away. He sighed and walked back up to his temporary office. By now, Komui and Bak would be wondering what he was doing. They were sure to be interested in his findings. Still, he worried that Komui's strange, seemingly telepathic link to his sister would warn him that something was up between her and Walker. It was going to be an interesting conversation. That much was certain.
Lenalee woke early in the morning. She had slept well for the first time since the night she had seen Allen-kun and Rouvelier wander off through the halls. Allen was safe, and sleeping in the next room along with Krory.
She had almost taken General Cloud's advise and found an inn for the two of them the night before. but thought better of it. There was no point in going too fast and ruining things. Besides, they were both wiped out. And, she was somewhat afraid of what her brother would think.
'He is a bit overprotective...' she admitted, 'but brother will come around.'
She turned into the hallway just in time to see Allen leaving his room. He had on a new uniform, but something seemed different about him. His hair was a little wavier, and he stood with what she could only describe as a nobleman's posture—back straight and perfectly balanced with a soldier's grace. He was always the perfect gentleman, that was one of the tings she liked about him. But this--
"Allen-kun," She called. He continued to walk down the hallway towards the main room. "Allen-kun!" She called again.
This time he turned, seeing her. He briefly shook his head then smiled. "Ah, good morning Lenalee. How did you sleep?" He asked.
"Fine," she said. "Allen-kun, what's wrong why didn't you answer me?"
He shook his head again. "Sorry, I just thought you were calling someone else at first. I must have misheard you, would you like to get some breakfast?"
She accepted his invitation and they ate in the main room of the safe house. Rouvelier had actually prepared some sort of apple pastries for breakfast a little while earlier. She wouldn't have admitted it under torture, but she actually enjoyed them. They were a crisp, golden brown. The crust was flakey and the man had gotten just the right mix of cinnamon and apple. He was she thought, perhaps not all bad.
'That reminds me, Allen-kun still doesn't know about their relationship.' She thought about telling her new boyfriend the truth—that Inspector Rouvelier was actually his father, but she decided against it. That was Rouvelier's story to tell. Or not, but she would give him a nudge anyway. Allen-kun deserved to know.
She finished eating then kissed Allen on the cheek. She told him she had some errands to run. He smiled and agreed to meet her later.
Lenalee left the main room then went immediately and steeled herself for what she was about to do. The cramped safe-house was a tiny building with four rooms on the main floor—a main room used as a kitchen, meeting place, and lounge; two bedrooms--one shared by General Kloud and herself, the other by Allen and Krory, and a bathroom.
The basement had three makeshift rooms separated by stone support walls. Two were used by Reever and Rouvelier as offices while the other was used as a lab. Lenalee assumed the men slept in their offices. She would be glad when they could leave. The people she considered her family tended to get on edge when their was no privacy.
This time she went to Rouvelier's office and knocked on the door.
"Come in," a voice said from the other side.
Lenalee opened the door to find the blond man sitting behinds his desk leafing through what she assumed were Allen-kun's latest test results.
"Ah, Lenalee, what is it?" He asked. He looked up at her with the same intense eyes that scared her as a child, then motioned for her to sit.
"It's Allen sir. I was just wondering if you were going to tell him-"
"I see," he cut her off. "And if I didn't would you?" He asked.
"No," she replied.
"Well then, I suppose I should. I have other things to worry about first, and there is still the matter of you're being AWOL by coming here. But I will tell him." He said.
Lenalee blushed fiercely. So he hadn't forgotten about that. At least he didn't seem too interested in interrogating Allen-kun as a traitor anymore.
"Was there anything else?" He asked, looking back at his report.
She hesitated, this might cause problems, but no she had trusted the man this far and hadn't been let down. "Yes, I think Allen-kun might be having some trouble adjusting to being the 14th. He was acting strange this morning, and Reever said he had said something weird to him last night."
Rouvelier's eyes flashed for a moment.
"I see," he said. "Don't worry, I'll take care of it."
Lenalee gave the man a hesitant smile then turned to leave. She hoped she had done the right thing. She didn't want to break Allen-kun's trust. But his habit of keeping problems to himself had caused problems before. Her Allen-kun had died. Yet somehow, she was given a precious gift in getting him back. She would never loose him again, even if it meant protecting him from himself. That she swore.
Inspector Rouvelier let the girl's words sink in. He carefully set the reports down, then took a calming breath.
He would have to get back to the scientist's findings later, Allen's power had apparently grown exponentially. They would need to run even more tests at Headquarters to make certain, but he could be what they needed to finally win this unholy war, and yet he was terrified for the white haired young man. It was strange, just two days ago he could think of Allen as little more than a chess piece. A tool which could be used then discarded as necessary.
He had buried his heart for nearly 15 years since his wife died. Now, because of that girl, he could only think of Allen as a son—his son. The one he had given up to save from the life he had ironically chosen anyway. The one who, in all probability no longer existed as the same person he was born.
'If this is your way of punishing me God, then why is it that he suffers most?' He thought to himself.
He got up and straightened the gray coat and tie then left his office. It was time to confront his son, and for the fist time in his life, be a father.
He found Allen in his room, his back turned to him. In his hands was a simple reed pipe the boy had apparently fashioned out of a river stalk and a pen knife. He was playing a light-hearted shrill tune and didn't notice Rouvelier enter.
The man simply contented himself to listen for a moment, it started out simply but continued to grow, notes and movements adding. Rouvelier thought he could hear other instruments as well, seemingly from nowhere complimenting and harmonizing with the boy. Was this the power of the musician?
'Incredible, but is he still even my son anymore, is that music really coming from a monster, who destroyed his soul?' he pushed the thought away. He had shielded himself with pity and thoughts that his son was dead too long.
He needed to know, and accept the boy in front of him either way. He had paid for his mistakes long enough, and the Order needed Allen Walker on its side whether or not Rouvelier's son was still a part of him.
"Allen," he called. The boy didn't answer. "Allen, the boy looked around but shrugged his shoulders. "James Walker!" Rouvelier called. This time the boy turned around.
"Yes," he asked. "Ah, Inspector, what can I do for you?" The boys looked at him. Mistrust was apparent on his face, and Rouvelier couldn't blame him.
"First of all," Rouvelier said, "do you know what name I called you just now?"
Allen looked puzzled. "What do you mean?"
"I called you Allen twice, but you only answered to James."
The boy dropped his makeshift instrument. "I-I must not have heard you the first time I was-,"
"Don't lie." Rouvelier warned. "It's beneath you. And you aren't fooling either of us."
Allen simply sighed. "I don't know what's going on," he admitted. "It wasn't that bad at first, but all of the sudden I have thousands of memories floating around in my head. Most of them belonged to people who have been dead for hundreds of years. I am not even sure who I am anymore. But I'm not a traitor. You have to believe me."
A lump began to form in Rouvelier's throat. Where had his steel like resolve gone to?
"Maybe it would help if I explained a little of your own life to you." Rouvelier said.
Allen gave him a strange look, but simply nodded.
"You were born August 12, 1878. You just turned sixteen last month. Your parents worked for the Vatican, they knew what you were from the beginning. They didn't abandon you because your arm was deformed, they did so to protect you from the dangerous life of an exorcist.
After you were moved around from several orphanages, you eventually found yourself following circuses doing the meanest labor for food. There you found by Mana Walker, the older brother of the then 14th Noah James Walker. The brothers took an interest in you and Mana became your surrogate father. James implanted his memory in you and divided his powers among four other people.
You are the last and now have all of them. He and Mana were killed by the Earl and General Cross took you in under James' request. At that moment you became an exorcist anyway, and worse, were forever tied to the Noah family, the enemies of God. You should remember what happens from there. Allen Walker."
When Rouvelier was finished, Allen looked amazed.
"How do you know so much about me, and who are my parents? The boy asked.
"Your mother is dead, she was killed by the Earl less than a year after she gave you up." He replied.
"And my father...?" By now, the boy was showing more interest than Rouvelier had ever seen, even when he had told him that he only had a short time to live just a couple of weeks previously.
"Your father is an arrogant bastard. You know him very well, but I doubt you want anything to do with him."
Allen sat there on his bed, talking to himself, he looked up and realization dawned. "YOU?!" He demanded. "I can't believe that."
Rouvelier's pulse quickened and he was sweating furiously. His heart felt like it was being ripped from his chest. "Accept it or not, it's the truth." He struggled to say it, but it felt as if a boulder had been lifted from his back.
"Why? Why have you treated me like a monster?" Allen demanded raising his voice to the man for the first time.
"And what would you have had me do? Embrace you with open arms? Say sorry son, I know I abandoned you as an infant but I'm here now. I lost everything too, and the fact remains either of us could be killed tomorrow. The truth is, it's easier to do the things I have to as an inspector if I just let everyone hate me."
Tears were running down his face freely now. He had told everything, he had nothing left to hide. Now his son would reject him and he could go back to being miser--
"I don't hate you."
"What?" Rouvelier heard himself say.
"I don't hate you," Allen replied. "It was a cowardly thing to do, but I understand why you did it. But I want you to know, I still consider Mana to be Allen's father."
Rouvelier punched his son in the gut. He held back, but it still knocked the wind out of the boy and he doubled over falling off the bed onto his knees.
"What was that for?" he demanded.
"Strange use of pronouns," Rouvelier replied. "You ARE Allen Walker. Hold onto yourself, for everyone's sake including your own. I doubt you want to hurt Lenalee. It's not the gentleman thing to do."
Allen smiled then stood up. "I'll try."
Author's notes: I focused real heavily on Inspector Rouvelier this time. I'm sorry to anyone who doesn't like him, but I can't help but give him some character growth. I think there must be a good man buried in there somewhere. Don't worry we won't be getting another POV from him for a while in any case. Next time, the dreaded conversation with Komui, and the return to the base. Also, we'll get to see how things are on the Earl's end. I hope you enjoyed, and as always, reviews and critiques are appreciated.