Author's Note - Greetings, fellow FanFiction community! This is my first attempt at mystery and at a actual Allen/Lenalee story. I can't promise quick updates, as Living Animation is my main focus, but I guarantee that they will not be long, extended updating periods. Anyways, I hope everyone enjoys.
I thank and dedicate this to Ozuchi-Kozuchi, my wonderful BETA reader who encouraged me to publish this.
Disclaimer - I own no characters mentioned. That and the original plot belong to Katsura Hoshino.
She couldn't cry.
Maybe her tears had long dried up. Maybe, after so much crying and despair, there was no more energy left in her to grieve. Some said she was heartbroken. Others said she would get over it. As she thought of it, however, she felt nothing.
Lavi told her she took emotionless to a whole new level. It had been a joke; an attempt to cheer her up just a week after the incident. He'd laughed. She told him she hadn't felt anything for a while.
He made her see the Head Nurse.
"Here you go," the woman had told her, handing her a bottle of pills. "This should help, Lenalee. You'll feel like yourself again in no time." Three days later, she flushed them down the toilet. Lavi found out a week after she was prescribed them.
"What are you, crazy? You need those, Lenalee!"
When she disposed of the fourth container handed to her, even under heavy watch by Lavi and others, he gave up. People continued to speak of Allen and his disappearance; she continued to ignore it. Months passed, and eventually the young man who had nearly gotten his head chopped off by Kanda was forgotten. Slowly, she began to think less of him each day.
One day, while on a mission, her Innocence had suddenly shut down, refusing to invoke once again. She returned home with a broken leg as a result of falling. After being rushed home, scientists looked to Hevlaska for answers when it was determined that nothing was physically malfunctioning with the Dark Boots.
"You both have lost your will," the Exorcist had told her, a hint of sorrow in her voice. Off to the side stood Leverrier and another figure who was cloaked so she couldn't determine their identity; he remained unimportant to her.
"That's outrageous!" Leverrier argued, "the Innocence is a substance God has provided us with! It lacks just as much emotion as Lenalee Lee does herself!"
But she had no will. Never was she ever given the freedom of having one.
"Your Innocence is just as lost as you are," Hevlaska spoke. "Like many of us, it wonders who you have become. It is confused, but most of all it is hurt."
"Hurt?" she repeated. Something tugged at her lightly from inside. She closed her eyes, but as much as she strained to, she couldn't understand the feeling. Shortly later, she was lowered to the ground once again and the mysterious stranger handed her crutches. Thanking him, she made her way to leave when Leverrier stepped forward, blocking her path.
"Lenalee Lee, it's been a while."
"Yes, it has," she replied, her voice neutral.
"It seems that you no longer fear my presence."
"I feared of what you would take," she stated evenly. From the corner of her eye, she could see Lavi take a step forward, only to recoil at Bookman's glare. "You have taken everything, Leverrier. I have nothing else to lose."
"Inspector." The cloaked person took a step forward. From the tone of their voice, she knew he was a male. When nothing else was said, Leverrier quietly left the room. As the cloaked individual moved to follow after him, a voice cut through the silence, making the whole room fill with tense.
Shocked, Lenalee whipped around, nearly losing her balance, to look at Lavi. She was not mistaken. She could tell by the anger in his features that he had been the one to speak.
She could almost feel the cloaked man smile. "Who wouldn't?" Lavi's eyes darkened, but before he could demand more out of him, he left the room, following after Leverrier.
He was soon forgotten when her legs began to throb and she fell to the floor, crying out in agony.
"I have found nothing wrong with your legs."
She nodded, a faraway look in her eyes as she watched the rain from the window.
The Head Nurse gave up after a while with a sigh, but Lenalee was still spacing out. She didn't think. She just sat there, fingering her anklets as she gazed out the window. A while later, the woman returned with the same pills she'd prescribed a little over half a year ago.
"Lenalee, please... just one. You can't keep doing this to yourself."
She didn't answer.
"Lenalee, please. I'm begging you. Don't do this to yourself."
She shook her head, inching away as the bottle was pressed in front of her.
"It's never too late, Lenalee. Stop yourself before it's too late."
"I'm not hurting myself."
"Yes you are," she protested. "Lenalee, don't you see that you've reduced yourself to just a shell? What do you wish to accomplish by this?"
She lowered her gaze.
"I... I don't want to be hurt anymore."
"Goodness, child," the older woman pulled Lenalee into a hug, rocking her gently. "You will not be hurt anymore if you take your medication. I would never advise anything if it was not good for your health. It was me who looked after you all those years, remember?"
"Yes, I remember, Head Nurse. I would've hated it here entirely if you had not been so kind."
"Lenalee, this is not you. Who have you become?"
"I am no one different."
She was not permitted to leave, and spent the night in the infirmary. Early the next morning, Lavi arrived to find the pills that had been set out for her untouched, as well as the water. Sighing deeply, he sat down in a chair.
"Hm?" She turned her head towards him.
"What's gotten into you? Why won't you take your medication?"
Her gaze returned to the window, and she was silent for a moment before her voice broke out into a whisper.
"I always remember him."
"How do you feel?"
She glared at him. "If you mean by how I feel now that you've demanded I take them, I haven't felt worse."
Lavi gave her his trademark grin before falling into step beside her. "Where are you headed?"
"Anywhere," she replied. She no longer had to use crutches, but her Innocence was still malfunctioning. Closing her eyes, she tried to feel the presence of the Dark Boots within her body. Before, she could faintly feel the Innocence cursing throughout her veins, ready to provide assistance at any moment, but now it felt that she had been left in the dark.
Perhaps God had really given up on her.
"Lenalee... what do you always remember about Allen?"
She stopped, and for a second she thought the floor was wavering beneath her. Unwanted memories flooded her mind and, for a moment, it seemed that she was reliving the event again. The shouts and protests filled her ears and she fought hard to not relive the tears that she had shed that day.
"No!" she cried out as she felt arms wrap around her, the same way Allen had that day. She shook her head, attempting to rid the image of him stroking her hair, telling her he'd be back. "Stop it!"
Lavi pulled her against her protests, effectively restraining her as he held her tightly. "Lenalee, calm down. It's okay." She heard him sigh. "Geez, I knew the pills were hard on you, but I didn't know they put you into such a flashback state."
"Lavi..." she bit her lip, "do you think Allen's still alive?"
"I don't know, Lenalee. He was taken by Leverrier. We were told that they had a purpose for him... but Central will say anything to keep thier true plans a secret."
Lenalee gritted her teeth, turning around and making a run for her destination. Lavi tried to catch her, but it was too late.
"Lenalee, wait! It's too dangerous for you to get involved with Central alone!" Lavi clenched his fists. If Central had really been the one responsible for Cross' mysterious disappearance, it was likely they were picking off those who knew certain information. If Lenalee was to discover something they wanted hidden...
Leverrier was planning something.
And a trap could very well be waiting for Lenalee.
"Damn," he cursed, clutching at his hair. "What the hell is his motive?"
A figure stepped out from the shadows, making Lavi turn around quickly, hand reaching for his hammer, but he stopped as soon as he recognized the person.
His eyes narrowed. Something was going on.
"It's been a while." It was the person accompanying Leverrier. Lavi would've prepared for combat, but had recognized the voice.