Hello there. A new one shot for everybody. It would normally be in Fragmented but it's too long and out of place for it.

Pairings: None

Genre: General

Rating: T for one swear word and violent themes

Characters: Agito-centric, with cameos Kaito, Akira, and Akito.

Timeline: Three years before Air Gear starts.

Summary: Agito ponders his life here and now as routine settles in.

Disclaimer: Air Gear belongs to Oh!Great.

Read and review!

A Life We Truly Live

My life isn't beautiful or pure. It's strange. I am not greeted everyday by a loving mother and father. I don't have friends or go to school surrounded by many people. My family is a cold brother who used to be warm and kind, even when he punched me in the jaw, an orphan friend with an over-protective complex, and the voice in my head of the boy who created me, my other half. He is the one I care for the most out of all of them, the one I would die for if only it wouldn't make him cry if I did.

I'm too young for a real job but I am thrust into one anyway, protecting those on the ground from those who misuse their wings. People call it amazing sometimes, or they call it cruel, most of the time. I don't care what it is. I am a child drenched in blood and this is my way of life. It has been for so long now, I don't remember a time without it.

It does not hurt, this fighting and bleeding and occasional kills. It feels good really, looks beautiful. It is red and black and whirling with sound and metal and touch. It is a hunt. I am the predator and they are the prey. That is, except now, when I am in the cage. Then I am nothing more than a tool, a pet. It is a bother, but I have nowhere else to be. So I stay, like a good little taken-in stray, knowing eventually I will be thrown away.

I sit here at the front seat, something I am not accustomed to. The person who this belongs to is currently retching in the toilet in the back. My brother in my head is both laughing and pitying. The other is cold but amused. He walks between those and contempt, occasionally filled with love and warmth, but those are fits of madness it seems. I smirk, feeling entertained by the orphan's discomfort. I told him not to try drinking, but it seems his wits escaped him. Well, it wasn't much of a surprise, since they seem to escape him frequently.

I feel light-headed. My brother is scolding me, punishing me. It is hard not to feel contrite. He is good at making me feel things I normally can't. I love him for it, even when I don't like it. It is why I protect him so. Plus the killings are better when he sings of them.

As I sit, I wonder why my friend likes this seat. It is rough, itchy. I can feel the metal against my wrists. It is uncomfortable, to say the least. Maybe my friend likes pain. I find that stupid. Giving pain I like. My own is a message, a hindrance sometimes. It does not need to be anything else. Enjoying it seems really insulting to me.

It's strange that I call him friend. I don't know what those are like. It's just a word, I guess. He's not family, not like my brothers, but he's not a coworker either. We fight each other to near-death, live together; kill together, and the whip will fall on both of us. We are close but it is not the same as blood. I guess the word works for it then. I do a lot of guessing, don't I?

I glance casually toward the speedometer of the trailer. It reads ninety. I wonder how brother managed to make this giant hunk of metal capable of going that fast, or even faster at times without killing us or getting caught.

Being a policeman has more perks than you thought huh? I struggle to keep my face blank. My wispy other half is feeling mischievous today. Or maybe he's just trying to cheer himself up. He does that often, it appears. I wish he would smile more. I've only seen pictures. And even the pictures look sad sometimes.

There are lights passing our heads, streetlights with the dull glows of artificial light bulbs. Fire looks better to me. It is real and untamed. It's free. I am jealous of nature and respect it. It is one of the few things worth respecting. The sky is dark blue, darker than my hair and I can hardly see the stars. Stars are pretty. I wish I could see them. I turn away from the window and sigh heavily. I'm bored.

"Be patient brat," my brother says to me, the first thing he's said since I came out to play. He jerks one thumb toward the back of the trailer. "At least you're not him." My friend shouts something indecipherable from the bathroom. I just give a quiet, meek nod. It isn't like me but I do not want to tempt him today. Things are going too well. I don't want to try fate. I silently slip from the chair and fill a glass with tap water. I walk into the tiny bathroom and place the glass on the sink. Without speaking I return to the seat. Moments later I hear the toilet flush and him stumble to one of the beds. He is lucky he gets a bed. I get metal bars and no floor.

The vehicle is slowing. We are close. Buildings are rising like little metal trees around us and we are flying past them. Wait… flying? That's wrong. I am Leviathan. I am a shark, born to swim of the seas of blood. I am not to fly. I am simply to swim and run and eventually drown in the mass of bodies and blood. I close my eye, the memory of the scent of blood already filling my nose. I cannot wait much longer.

Just as I think that, we stop. Brother pulls his keys from the ignition and stands. I remain still. He is not ready for me, not ready to control me. I hear snoring and quietly snicker. My friend has finally given up to the pain of the hangover. Can't say he didn't linger. The sound of metal swinging reaches my ears and I stand, kneeling to slip my Air Trecks on. The laces are trouble with my long sleeves and I struggle. I have to be quick, or-


I feel my back burn with pain but keep silent. Damn that whip! "Hurry up brat." The monotone makes me hiss sharply, inwardly of course. I hate him, his cruelty, his hatred of those who want the sky, and his hatred of me, who did nothing but exist and protect. But I am also afraid of him, of when he is kind and his hands are tender upon my head and body, when there is nothing but warmth and gentleness in his words. Because I don't know which one is real and I don't know which one is stronger. And I am afraid because we are bound to him and cannot escape being his tool.

He is always like this on days like today, my other half reminds me, soft hand mentally soothing the injury. He's trying, he truly is. It works, but only because my mercy is true to him and true to me.

I feel real hands now, brother's hands. They are large and cold, moving to tie the sleeves of my jacket with a deftness that amazes all that do not know him. Then, there is a familiar click of a metal leash along my belt loop. I can't help but let jealousy seep into me. You never put brother on a leash, I scream inside, almost aloud in a fit of madness. Why can't you trust me? I love you as he does! Just because I laugh and splash blood in your face when you don't want it and my tongue has a quicker wit than even you, you don't want me. Or is it that you think I will kill you in your sleep? I am not so stupid as that. Just to prove it, I bite my foolish tongue, because it was getting into a habit of making noises that shouldn't be heard.

We are walking past my friend now. Brother ignores him purposely. But as we pass, I can't help the whisper. "You are a moron."

He glances up at me, still slightly awake. Sick though he may be, he smiles and replies just as quietly. "Yes but I am not the one with a chain around his neck." That's where you are wrong, I think. Your leash is just longer. My other half agrees, shaking his head in disdain.

We are walking, the concrete loud in my ears. I can't help but feel uneasy. There are too many eyes on us, too many lives. I wonder how many will be dead by the end of this. It's been a long time since we've done such a bold and reckless tactic after all.

Only fifty will have to live. The clinical response is cold, colder than winter. It is a truth though, a truth I sometimes wish he wouldn't accept.

I need to ask you something.


When we win, will you be able to smile at me?

He looks at me from the other side of the mirror. Then he laughs lightly, the sound like bells. When you win, I will smile at you as bright as the sun.

We stop, standing like statues. As cool as you please, brother removes the chain. And I am free. I smile and it wells up in me, that primal desire. I want to kill. My other half is humming softly. He is ready. I am ready. All that remains is for brother to leave and this scum to accept their death. Just as casually as he came, brother walks away, twirling his gun like a baton. There is a steady whirr of wheels. They rush in on me, all at once. My frail one begins to sing.

I dreamed you dead and lying there, with blood stained you from toes to hair. I dreamed of fire burning bright, falling like rain in shadowed night.

The life I live is strange. But I would not have it be anything else.