Yeah…I apologize for the lateness I meant to have this up by thanksgiving but circumstances with my computer caused unfortunate delays so I tried to make up for it with an extra long chapter. Also if you wondering about the settings of some of the scenes. I am drawing comparisons directly from the game, so if you've played the game, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't, what are you waiting for?!
Slight warning, this story will have characters from No. 6 anime, but it still will follow the game's plot elements
Chapter 7: Rescued and Reunited
Seto ran along the long empty, dark corridors of the strange building. His footsteps sounded hollow as they echoed against the dirty and dust covered walls. Suddenly, the ground began to shake. Seto placed his hands against the sides of the corridor maintaining his balance until the tremor was over. It didn't last long, and Seto waved his flashlight in front of him and behind. He had checked his briefcase and was in shock as he found all of his spare weapons were missing, including his trusty golf club. He remembered he had dropped his katana the night with Kurou on top of the Ferris wheel. He knew it was safe with Kurou.
/ "Here you go Seto, I kept this safe for you until you returned. I knew you would."
"Thank you very much, Kurou-kun!"
Kurou and Seto smiled gently at each other and gradually the two noticed they were getting closer to each other. They're fingers touched and their hands trembled as they held onto each other refusing to let go even for a moment. Their faces were so close together, they could feel the other's breath against their skin. Slowly they're eyes closed as their lips touched.../
Seto's eyes widened as he shook his brunette head wildly. Why was he thinking about that? He didn't think about Kurou that way. Though it was strange, usually when he had those weird dreams he always called out Crow's name, but this time he said Kurou's name.
Clearing his thoughts once again, Seto focused on the task at hand. He need to find a way out of this seemingly endless maze of hallways and locked doors. Seto continued his path and as he turned another corner he came face to face with a flock of bird spirits. Unfortunately he did not have any of his weapons, with a running start he sprint toward the birds as they began to dive toward him. Seto rushed forward, his head low. He closed his eyes as he ran straight through the bird flock. However, due to his eyes being closed, Seto couldn't see where he was going and didn't know exactly how fast he was running either. With a cry from Seto crashed hard through one of the doors at the end of the hallway he was just in. The door was old and the hinges were rotten and worn, barely holding onto the wall, easily able to fall away. Seto lay against the fallen door on the ground, holding his throbbing head. Wincing a little at the ache he felt as he struggled to his knees, Seto turned his head and shivered as he realized he was trapped. Seto scrambled to his feet and lifted the door and propped it up against the doorway effectively blocking the pathway. Seto realized a long time ago that even though they were spirits, they could not pass through solid objects like walls and doors.
Keeping the door in place, Seto found a small toppled table and set it up to barricade the door. Picking up his fallen flashlight, Seto began to survey his surrounded. He was in some sort of storage room that also seemed to be a laundry room. Windows lined one side of the room, however, as Seto tried to get close to peer out. He found the windows were bolted shut. He tried to break the glass but it wasn't a normal breakable glass. It was more like clear fiberglass. Even with all of Seto's might he couldn't break through. Not that he would even want to. Outside was dark, not even the full moon was shining down. In the middle of the room was a fire pit, unlit and cold. Seto sighed in relief. Now he had a place to sit and rest for a time and regain his strength, and maybe think of his next move.
However, as he stepped forward, something caught the corner of his eye. By broken window, an old rusted sword rested propped against the corner. Several glowing fireflies fluttered around it. Seto gingerly touched the sword's hilt. It was a long broad sword and looked like it was too old and rusted to even use properly. It seemed fragile like it would break even if one tried to raise it up. Seto could barely lift it as it was almost bigger than him! He dragged it over to the fire pit and laid it down on the ground. Seto finally relaxed and lit up the fire.
Just as the fire's glow hit the sword, it began to glow brightly. The brightness filled the small room. Seto shielded his eyes when suddenly a low, soft and melancholy voice filled his ears.
The Emperor had given me a direct order. It was such an honor, the highest anyone could achieve. I am the Knight of Zero, known to all as the strongest fighter in the world. So, how come I feel so empty when I am alone at night, away from the crowds of free civilians, who would gleefully, cry out the name of their savior. Truthfully, I am no hero at all. A hero doesn't kill. Lelouch, why did you choose me? Is it because I was your personal knight? Is it because I was your best friend since we were children? Or is it because, I could never refuse you of anything, no matter what, even without the use of Geass?
Lelouch was my best friend, my first friend. I thought we would be together forever, partners throughout any kind of situation, good and bad. Never did I once think we would have to fight against each other. Why did our friendship have to be torn apart by war and the world? I thought it was stronger than that. I thought I was stronger. I thought you were the strongest person I had ever met. Now we are both fated to walk down separate paths that would only end in death and loneliness.
Hey, if someone is listening out there, when you hold this blade at your enemies, please remember this. Do not swing to mindlessly kill, swing only with your thoughts on protecting the person behind you, the person you care about the most, the one closest to your heart.
As the voice ended, so did the blinding light begin to dim. Seto was able to look up only to find the old rusted sword, shiny and new. Carefully, Seto touched it again. It was like it has returned to its original state. Gripping the hilt of the blade, Seto tried to lift it up remembering how heavy it was before. Now it was inexplicably light. Even though it was still the same size as the boy, Seto was able to lift it high over his head and bring it down again in one slice.
Seto took his stance and gripped the hilt of his sword tightly. He was convinced he was going to get passed those bird spirits. He pushed aside the barricade against the door and rushed into the hallway where nearly a dozen bird spirits all dived toward him. With a determined glint in his eye, Seto swung his sword. With one well timed slice, he was able to cut down each of the birds, one by one, until they all vanished within a flash of light, leaving behind small spoils for Seto's victory against them.
Out of breath, Seto gathered up the item gifts left by the bird spirits and rushed back to his tattered old suitcase to put the items inside. Resting for only a moment by the fire pit, Seto was ready to continue and he set off further down the seemingly endless corridors. Just then, a strange sound filled the air, a low moan followed by what seemed to be an old engine whirling to life. Seto peered into the darkness before him and froze as he saw sparks in the distance. He readied his weapon but still took a few cautious steps backward. He knew what it was. Five identical robot droids flipped up into standing positions. They locked onto Seto's coordinates and started walking towards him like a pack of restless zombies. Seto prepared to charge at them. Suddenly, a clang of metal hit the droids knocking them out of commission.
Out of the distant shadows a young man appeared, holding a steel golf club, standing over the dead droids.
"What are you doing here? It's dangerous here." The young man spoke, but Seto didn't respond. Wide innocent brown eyes stared at the new companion. Seto could hardly breathe as he fought back the tears that threatened to fall down his cheeks. It was so rare to see another human like himself here. He closed his eyes and bowed his head, unable to speak for a long moment.
He didn't hear any footsteps, but Seto could feel the warmth radiating from the young man's very presence. It felt so inviting and nice, like his friends, Ren and Kurou were standing right next to him again.
"Are you okay? Are you hurt?" The young man spoke again. This time Seto looked up preparing to answer but was stopped yet again as his eyes beheld the man's features. Silver hair framed heart-shaped face and hidden beneath was a set of kind, round red eyes. Seto felt his whole body tremble, and under his breath he murmured, "Ren?"
The silver haired haired man looked down at the boy with slight confusion, but than his smile returned. "Come on; let's get you out of here. This building is extremely unstable."
Just as he said this, several violent tremors shook the foundation of the building. Seto caught his balance and followed the silver haired man down the corridors. He seemed to know where to go. Seto didn't understand why, but he just knew he could trust him.
The tremors continued trying to knock Seto off his feet. It was becoming harder to keep up and run in a straight line. He finally caught up with the silver-haired man, however, they were at a dead end hallway. There were no doors or windows anywhere in sight. "Where do we go now?" Seto asked in a hurried panic. The silver-haired man gave a calm smile and pointed to a chute against the wall. "Jump through this chute. We should be safe on the other side of it."
Seto was about to protest, saying he couldn't possibly fit through that small of a space. However, the tremors continued and the familiar robotic whirling hum suddenly appeared behind him and more droids were closing in on him. The boy was about to charge again to attack but was stopped by a hand on his shoulder.
"Don't! Even if you attack them, more of them will keep coming to replace them. Sometimes it's better just to run away."
Seto knew he could take them but he also knew he needed to save his energy. He didn't know where the next fire pit would be and the last one was too far away. Turning away from the droid enemies, Seto threw caution to the wind and jumped through the chute opening and slid through the dark hollow vent.
After several minutes of sliding down in total darkness, Seto fell out through an opening at the bottom of the chute and he prepared to land on the hard ground. However, he found that he had fallen face first into a humongous pile trash and dirt. Glancing around, he found his old suitcase and his swords and fallen nearby within arm's reach. Seto crawled through the mounts of rusty and dirt-ridden debris, abandoned by now dead humans. He soon reached the very top of the pile only to come to a sudden drop. With a misplaced hand and an unstable dusty, broken footstool, Seto slipped and slid down the high stack until he felt his feet finally hit the solid cement ground. Seto was glad to hear the echo of his footsteps again. He had never experienced anything like that before, and though it was new, he didn't want to ever experience it again.
Taking out his flashlight, Seto explored the vast space. It was large and empty except for the mountain of the discarded human treasures. Was he still inside the building? The room was dark. There were no doors or windows, and Seto realized he was trapped now. He waved the flashlight around the area, trying to locate anything that could be useful in his escape when suddenly the silver-haired man appeared a few feet away from him. His kind smile once again returned to his face as he watched Seto approach cautiously. He gestured with his hand down to a warm and bright fire pit at his feet.
"It's okay. We're safe down here for now. You must be freezing. Come and get warm, or you might catch a cold."
The minutes passed by very slowly as the two boys watched the fire embers flare in quiet, peaceful silence. Seto raised his hands and felt the heat of the fire, but for some reason he couldn't get warm. His body shivered.
The silver haired man chuckled under his breath and shrugged off his own long brown trench coat. He offered it to Seto and when the boy didn't protest, he proceeded to drape the cloth across the boy's shoulders. "Won't you be cold now?"
"It's quite alright. To be honest, I haven't had a need for it in such a long time."
Hesitantly, Seto accepted the gift and soon relaxed his body feeling the comforting warmth that still resided within the coat itself. "It feels so warm. You must have had lots of good memories with it."
"You're very perceptive." The silver haired man chuckled under his breath. "Actually, you're right as a matter of fact. I have so many good memories with that coat. I bet you do the same with yours." He pointed to Seto's tattered blue coat that lay beside the boy. Seto smiled as his mind was flooded with memories. "Yeah, but sometimes I want to be able to tell my memories to someone, otherwise, they will just disappear along with me when I die.
"Nothing lasts forever."
"My friends will, as long as I keep their memory alive in my heart. They will never truly die."
The silver haired man smiled, "Can you tell me about them? If you tell me of your friends, they're memory will be remembered in my heart as well."
Filled with hope, Seto turned his wide brown eyes toward his new companion. He smiled. Seto began to tell him of his grandfather, who raised him in the star conservatory look out, and left Seto suddenly with only a heartfelt letter. Then he told of PF and how he discovered her abandoned in a subway station, and how they had watched the sunrise together and made a journey through the maze of the underground mall, where at the end, her battery finally died. Seto didn't have any extra batteries, nor did he know where to get any. He couldn't help her. It was the first time he felt helpless. Just after, was also a first for Seto. It was the first time, he had gotten angry. Crow was so mean, teasing him, stealing his treasures, and making him chase him everywhere! However, there was one thing about Crow that he wasn't sure how to feel. Crow had kissed him! Seto was confused as to why he did it in the first place but he was also angry at Crow, for that had been his first kiss ever!
Seto's face flushed a deep red as he remembered his first best friend, however, he found it a little strange. Crow's voice in his memory was almost identical to Kurou's voice. Seto shook his head furiously. He didn't want to forget his friend. His memory and the skull ring was all he had left.
The silver haired main listened quietly as Seto continued his story. He smiled as he watched Seto's face as the boy's memories relived each precious moment he possessed.
When Seto finished his story, he could do nothing but stare silently at the bright flickering flames before him. A part of him felt good to tell someone, but another part of him wanted to cry, cause he knew that everyone leaves, everyone dies at some point in their life, but it's still painful to think about because of all the great memories they made are still very much alive with the hearts of the people they loved.
The silver haired man reached over and brushed away Seto's tears that were already streaming down his cheeks. "You know, it's good to cry. It shows how much they meant to you. I'm sure they are looking down on you right now wanting to be with you too. They see your tears and they realize how important they were to you."
Seto, with tears fogging his vision looked up at the man. He tried to smile as he spoke. "I'm sorry…I never asked you your name. I mean we are friends now right?"
The young man laughed heartedly at the boy's youthful innocence. It was amazing for through out all the sadness and pain he had to endure, he could still keep such a pure aura around him.
"My name is Sion. "
Though his laughter was slowly diminishing, a broad smile remained as he watched Seto. It was making Seto curious. "Why did you laugh? Did I say something weird?"
Sion shook his head, silver hair wafted from side to side across his red eyes. "It's nothing. I'm just so happy to have met someone like you."
Seto's innocent smile returned. "Me too."
A few more moments passed when Seto's curiosity peaked once again as his big wide eyes watched the flames dance with Sion's red eyes. They seemed so sad.
"I guess it's been about fifteen years now." Sion started, his voice solemn. "I'm actually looking for someone, but I don't they're even here now, but I can go home until I find them."
"Aren't there people who miss you back at home?" Seto questioned.
Sion chuckled lightly, biting back a blush from forming across his cheeks. "I have no doubt he's waiting. He can be so stubborn, but then again, so am I. I guess that's why we're best friends, you know." He smiled lightly at Seto. Even though his eyes were closed, Seto could feel he was holding back tears. Seto could only nod.
Seto reached into his locket and pulled something out. He offered it to Sion in his outstretched palm. "Here, take it."
"Isn't this, the ring from your friend?"
Seto nodded, unmoving his hand. "I want to give it to you. Crow once told me that friends give each other presents. We are friends now, right?
Sion nodded, smiling and plucked the ring from Seto's palm. "Won't you miss it though?"
Seto shook his head. "Crow also told me that friends also give each other…uh kisses and my friend Kurou already gave me one. I don't want to seem to greedy, accepting all of them."
Sion just laughed. Unknown to Seto, the ring fell through Sion's hand and landing with a silent thud. The dirt on the ground cushioned it's fall as it was buried beneath the ground.
Just then, a faint sound startled Seto out of his comfortable silence and into an alert mode. His whole body jumped up as if he had just sat on pins and needles. His fingers were trembling as they grabbed for his new long sword. Seto knew this sound. It was so familiar to him. He had fought against so many vicious dogs before that he could sometimes hear their growls and yelps in his sleep. Sion also stood up. He heard the barking too, but his expression was not one of fear and worry but rather relief and hope.
Suddenly the huge pile of debris began to shake and the two boys took several steps backward. Suddenly, fast moving paws broke through the dirt and rumble and scruffy tan furred blood hound broke through into Seto and Sion's entrapment. It barked and howled several times, and Seto registered this as vengeful spirits preparing for an attack and was ready to do the same. He raised his sword preparing to strike. However, Sion stopped him. "Wait."
Sion smirked and stretched out a pale hand toward the dog. The beasts growling slowly turned into a gentle whine. It's floppy ears drooped along with its head as it sniffed Sion's hand. It then slowly approached Seto who flinched back, but relaxed as he noticed the dog nuzzle the back of his hand. Another began to tug the sleeve of Seto's coat. A third one surprised Seto by appearing behind him and pushing him towards the tunnel through which the dogs had crawled through.
"It looks like the dogs have found a way out of here." Sion assumed as his red eyes analyzed the dogs movements .
"What about you?" Seto turned back toward Sion.
Sion merely gave a light-hearted smile and replied, "Don't worry I'll be right behind you. I promise."
Seto nodded and knelt down and began to crawl through the narrow passageway. After what felt like hours of crawling through the cramped space of dirt and dust. He was reminded of crawling around in the vents out the old hospital he first explored.
The small space was so dark Seto didn't know how far it stretched or even how long he would have to crawl, for he didn't even know the time. He couldn't turn around even to see if Sion was indeed behind him. Seto could hear the dogs panting and rustling as their excited tails wagged, slapping against the walls of the tunnel.
After what seemed like hours, big brown eyes squinted as a bright light caught his vision ahead of him. Seto finally poked his head up from the hole within the dirt. It was so bright. The sun was directly above him, so high in the blue sky. Rolling hills of sand covered the landscape with an occasional collapsed building. It was like a great earthquake shook the land to near extinction. Seto trembled as he thought at that moment about his friends, and wondered if they were even still alive, or if they were like all the rest of the people and succumbed to the fate of death. The boy would have stayed there if it wasn't for the dogs furry heads pushing against Seto's feet, urging him to continue. Seto relented and climbed out and tried to identify his surroundings. He stood just beyond a tall white stone wall that seemed to stretch out for miles. He could only guess that the hospital which he was just in was on the other side.
The dogs rushed out of the hole after Seto and began to bark wildly, all the while pulling and pushing at the boy, urging him to go with them. Seto was unsure if he could still fully trust them. He was hesitant, though he relaxed as he felt Sion's presence beside him.
"Don't worry," Sion answered, the dogs are in fact very friendly, and besides, they are leading you exactly where you want to be. Look."
Seto looked straight ahead where Sion was pointing. His eyes widened and his breath caught up in his throat. Four beings were running towards him. However, only two of the figures made his eyes well up with tears. Seto dropped his sword and bag and ran to meet them. Feeling the warmth of Kurou's and Ren's touches as he hugged them was enough to release the tears Seto was holding back as wrapped his arms around Kurou's neck. He was happy, and he never wanted to let this memory go!
In the next chapter:
"I'm sorry…Nezumi…please forgive me." "Idiot. I forgave you along time ago. Besides, in a way your promise was kept anyway…" "What?" Red and steel gray eyes both turned to the young beautiful face that appeared in the door way. "Hello…mama…"