Zombiepowder is awesome. I made a continuation.
... What do you mean, that was too short? Gah!
Anyways, this is said continuation. The second chapter will come around early June, and then expect no updates for a few weeks. I'm gonna be on vacation. :3 Chapter titles will be inspired by music, will be puns, or will have double meanings. See if you can find out which is which for each title.
And, lastly, Zombiepowder belongs to Tite Kubo. If it belonged to me, then this story would have been published by now. Which it hasn't. :p
The silence in Gamma Akutabi's room was deafening. Elwood Shepherd looked around, taking in the empty bed and the note on the pillow. His eyes widened, and his mouth pressed into a thin line.
"Gamma," he whispered, reaching for the letter, then drawing back. "No... no, he promised..."
Elwood turned away, out of the room and down the hall of the Gemini lab, throwing Wolfina Getto's door open.
"Wolfina!" he cried, his footsteps echoing on the tile as he ran in. "Wolfina, Gamma—"
He stopped. Wolfina was sitting on her bed, back to him. She turned, a small smile on her lips.
"Is gone?" she finished for him. "Yeah, I knew. I uh... knew since last night, after Emilio's operation started." She shook her head, sighing, and her smile grew wider and more somber. "Gamma's a real idiot, isn't he?"
Elwood gritted his teeth, fury welling up inside. "He's not an idiot!" he shouted.
She paused. "That depends, I guess."
Elwood stared at her, eyes angry, then looked away. He said nothing.
"Sorry, El." She stood and walked to the door. "Emilio's operation is still going, and I promised that I would be with him when he woke up." She passed him, smiling slightly, and walked into the hall, leaving the boy alone with his thoughts.
He looked back as she left, then looked away again.
Gamma had told him so many times that it was his choice to keep going and find the Zombiepowder, or to go home and regret that he couldn't do anything for Sheryl. He had listened, and chosen to go, and tried to get stronger, and followed Gamma like a dog followed its master. He wanted to learn from Gamma. He wanted to be strong, and learn how to defend himself. Gamma was skilled in combat, an amazing warrior, and Elwood wanted to be like him. He wanted to fight like Gamma, and be just as good as him.
He envied Gamma. He envied his strength, his power... and he wanted to be powerful like him, too...
... So he could bring Sheryl back.
Elwood looked up, only to find himself in Gamma's room, his feet unconsciously carrying him back to the bed and the letter. He reached out, gripping the paper and skimming over it.
It was a simple statement, just Gamma explaining that he had left with Smith and wasn't coming back. It said nothing about his whereabouts, or his plans. Elwood's mouth quirked as he turned it over, seeing nothing on the back. He set the paper back down and sighed quietly.
Just where the hell had he gone?
Wolfina waited outside the operating room, her hands over her ears, trying to block out the sound of chainsaws revving and Nazna's assistants barking orders. There was a sickening splash of something, and she flinched. Her eyes drifted down the hall, eyebrows pinched together in thought.
Dammit, how long is this gonna take? she thought as Nazna's voice carried into the hallway.
"Restrain him! Get cables, now!"
Another crash; more screams. Wolfina rested her head in her hands. Dear God... she just hoped Emilio would be safe...
Wolfina didn't know how long she waited outside the door. Maybe a few minutes, maybe an hour or two; it didn't make any difference, though, until the noises gradually faded. She raised her head and glanced behind her as the door cracked open and one of the maids walked out, covered in blood and limping slightly.
"You're Miss Getto?" she asked. Wolfina nodded. "Come with me. Master Nazna wants a word with you."
Wolfina followed the girl inside; the room was a wreck, covered in blood splatters and cracks along the walls. A hole had been blasted clean through the far wall, and the other maid was nursing a wound in the light that filtered through. The operating table in the center was undamaged, however, with Emilio's unconscious form sprawled over it. Wolfina's heart fell at the sight of her still-sleeping brother, but she brightened as Nazna Gemini looked up from where she was hunched over the table, gripping something in a pair of pliers. She studied Wolfina quietly, hair and face caked in blood, and smiled at her.
"My side of the deal's been paid, girl," she said, her voice hoarse. "Time for you to uphold your end."
Wolfina gave a quick glance to her brother. "But he's-"
Nazna cut her off by holding up the pliers. In-between the clamps was a small, heart-shaped ring thoroughly coated in blood. "He'll wake up in an hour or so," Nazna said, looking down at the boy as well and watching as he breathed evenly, his chest rising and falling with a steady pace. "That... or he won't wake up at all."
Wolfina opened her mouth, distraught, but Nazna waved a hand and chuckled. "You can never take a joke, can you? No, he'll be fine. I made a promise that I'd fix him till he was perfect, didn't I?"
Nazna shuffled away to the door, giving the pliers to Wolfina and taking care not to touch the Ring of the Dead between the clamps. Wolfina stared at the deadly object between her hands, then turned to Nazna. "And what am I supposed to do with this?" she asked.
The woman turned, straightening the black battle dress that she wore. "Use your imagination," she muttered. "Now, let's get you fitted for a uniform, shall we, Miss Getto?"
Elwood stared out the window, blocking out the mindless chatter of the two maids next to him, Jian and Tasha. He picked at his food, barely noticing what was on his plate. The boy was already lost in thought. Elwood caught a few strains of the conversation, however; something about an asylum in a nearby town being destroyed and the residents moved. He listened for a few minutes before deciding that he didn't need to know about it, and returned to his thoughts. He heard the chairs scraping against the floor as the maids left. He knew his food was getting cold; he didn't feel like eating.
And then someone else came in, the heels of the uniform maid shoes clicking against the floor.
"I'm fine, Ms. Tasha. I don't need any..." Elwood looked away from the window and blinked when he saw Wolfina dressed in a maid's uniform, staring him down with arms crossed, carrying a small box in one hand.
"... What happened, Wolfina?"
Wolfina seemed to brighten; she smiled and laughed slightly. "Emilio's operation just finished, so Nazna had me... put this on..." The scowl returned as she glared at the frilly uniform that she wore. In spite of the overall identical clothing to the other maids, she wore her red ribbon in her hair as though it had never left. "... Anyway, she gave this to me," she shifted the package in her hand, holding it out to him, "and I thought you'd like to have it."
Elwood took the package and slipped it open, peeking inside. His eyes widened when he caught sight of the ring on a small cushion, glinting in the light and covered in dried blood. He snapped the box shut.
"What's wrong?" asked Wolfina. Elwood shook his head.
"I'm okay. Really," he said quickly, smiling.
Wolfina blinked at his sudden response, then relaxed, smiling widely. "That's good." She paused as she saw a brief expression of determination flicker over the boy's face as he stared at the box, then smiled again, softer. "You know..." she started, gaining Elwood's attention.
"Yes?" he asked.
"I won't stop you if you go after Gamma." Elwood's eyes widened, and Wolfina took a deep breath before continuing. "But... you be careful, okay? I don't want to be responsible for your death just because I told you that you could go. Okay?"
Elwood paused and pushed in his chair. Taking quick strides to where she stood, he reached out and hugged Wolfina, catching the girl by surprise.
"I promise," he whispered. Wolfina blinked again, her eyebrows dancing up to her hairline, but she immediately sobered and hugged the boy back. "I promise I'll come back, Wolfina."
She smiled. "I know."
Wolfina watched the next morning as Elwood's back disappeared down the road, walking over boulders and scuffing the red dirt with his heels. The sunrise began the slip over the horizon, silhouetting the boy as he continued his trek.
"He's a good kid," said a voice from behind her. Wolfina didn't even flinch as Nazna walked to her side and stared into the rising sun. "He won't die too soon."
"It's not him dying that I'm worried about. I know he'll live, but..." she said, trailing off.
Nazna shot her a sideways glance. "... But you're still worried."
Wolfina nodded. "... Yes."
The other woman sighed. "He's got a ring with him. You've effectively made him a walking target."
"I know. I was hoping that he could get to Gamma before... before someone..." Wolfina found herself unable to continue.
Nazna lowered her gaze. "As long as I've known Gamma, he's never been one to find weak followers. Either he was betting on the boy's death, which I doubt, or he had faith that he would survive." She turned to Wolfina once more. "That kid's not going to die anytime soon, Miss Getto. You have my word on that."
Nazna turned to leave, but Wolfina turned as well. "Is Emilio-"
"Fine." Nazna said, turning once more. She was smiling. "He regained consciousness just a few minutes ago."
Wolfina's eyes widened. Her mouth opened just so slightly. "He... I..."
"I came to tell you that he wanted to see you. This way."
Wolfina followed, sparing one last glance to the window, searching for Elwood's back, but the boy was gone. And for once, Wolfina wasn't worried.
She had a brother to see.
A/N: Well, did you like it, love it, want more of it? If it was any of those three, then please review! If not... then there's nothing I can do. Sorry.