A slight wind with a hint of the forbearance of the oncoming cold blew through his clothes as he studied the dark and brilliant sunset. Jet black storm clouds shaded the brilliant hues of orange, gold, pink and violet, dusky blues fading in softly here and there. He shivered, the scent of snow omniscient and invading of the warm memories he had. The warm memories he shouldn't have.
The decision he had to make hung over him, heavier with more silent despair than those storm clouds could ever have. He felt like his whole being might break. Those memories… Sometimes memories are all that people have left to live on. He thought, sighing deeply. He turned and looked off into the fogged distance; trying not to dwell on the things he had lost and found. He found himself unsuccessful however, and his mind took him back to that fateful day where it all began…
Unfortunate occurrences seemed to follow the exorcists around like their own personal entourage of rainclouds, and this time was no different. After debunking a particular rambunctious piece of Innocence from a scarecrow with an ax, Allen, Kanda, Krory, Lavi, and Lenalee were, or close to being, asleep on the train that was speeding towards Headquarters. The train car rocked steadily, lulling the weary exorcists to sleep.
A finder by the name of Ian stared out of the window, lost in the luminous darkness of the night sky, which was scattered with stars, the only thing blocking their brilliance silver-tinged rainclouds. He too began to slowly descend into slumber, tired from his day of running and dodging and a close run-in with the Innocence before it had been disassembled from the scarecrow (with the very sharp ax). He had lost his fellow finder in the search for that Innocence and was still stunned with his death. It had happened before, but death was always going to be something that took a long time to get used to unless you were utterly surrounded by it. Ian glanced out the window one last time before his eyelids became too heavy for him to even possibly consider holding them open anymore. He vaguely thought he saw shadows in the distance, but his weary mind brushed it off like the dust the train was leaving in its wake. It was almost his fatal mistake.
In the said distance, six level two akuma were flying at a safe length from the train carrying the exorcists, the unclaimed Innocence's radiance vibrating in their metal skeletons. They had two simple urges: to kill, and to bring the Innocence to their Creator so that he could destroy it. This time was no different.
It was time to attack; the last light in the train compartment the Innocence was in had dimmed over five minutes ago. The akuma's time for glory, or so they hoped, was now. The akuma that looked like a bee cackled gleefully.
"The Innocence is mine! I claim it! I will bring it to the Master and be praised!"
This announcement caused the other akuma to raise a metallic racket of protest, which only silenced when the akuma realized that if they were not quiet, they would wake the exorcists without a doubt. So, now that they were hushed, the akuma split into three groups of two and silently flew to the train. Positions taken, they readied themselves and aimed to fire.
Allen was sleeping restlessly, which finally caused him to jerk awake, perturbed. Something was bothering him, and he could not put his finger on what it was. His mind still fuzzy, he looked around the cabin at his sleeping friends. Lavi had sprawled comfortably in a corner by the window, on the verge of snoring. Krory's head was supported by the wall as he slept, and Lenalee had curled up on the seat between Lavi and the finder Ian, cat –like in her repose. Kanda was sitting as straight and stiff as always, and Allen wondered how he could even sleep like that. Not that he cared much. He yawned, stretching, and went to rub his eyes when he realized what was bothering him.
His cursed left eye had activated and his left arm was tingling in anticipation. Akuma were here. He leapt to his feet; his Innocence already equipped, and yelled "AKUMA!" before he started to aim and fire at the dark shapes outside the window. Everyone jumped to their feet, sleep forgotten in a mad rush, a gentle whirring sound filling the cab as four more sets of Innocence activated.
Almost immediately, the right side of the train car exploded when an akuma grenade hit it, wrenching back the steel and wood and exposing the night sky. Long grayish fingers grasped the torn edges, and an akuma that looked like a tree peered in, then shot a few rounds at random, and disappeared and let the other five akuma go to work. After he had pulled away from the wreckage and he could hear the exorcists' yells as they charged the other akuma, explosions ensuing, he snickered to himself gleefully as he vanished in the night. Those exorcists were going to get a nasty surprise from the time-delayed bullets that he shot, especially since they brought inanimate objects to life.
The battle that followed was quick and decisive, Kanda immediately slicing the first akuma that came into view with Mugen, and Krory grabbing the next one: he was hungry. Lenalee leapt into the air and smashed the flying bee one, a death scream at its throat, and Lavi just gave the one antagonizing him a good whack with his hammer and a satisfactory explosion followed. Allen was about to shoot the humanoid akuma, the last one left, but it grabbed Ian and held a razor that replaced its hand at Ian's neck. Allen could feel his heart stop in his chest, fearing for the finder's life.
"What's a matter little exorcist, don't want to kill your friend here? Well in that case, I'll leave him hear, and be taking," he reached into the finders bag and pulled out the Innocence, "this with me." The akuma cackled gleefully, her voice like razor blades, and she jumped into the air, still holding Ian and the Innocence. As Allen reached out to yell "No!" at the akuma, who had let go of Ian at least thirty feet above the speeding train, Timcanpy shot out of his sleeve and at the akuma. Opening his mouth wide, he plucked the Innocence from the demon's hand, swallowing it, and sped back towards the train before the demon had any idea what was going on. Lenalee burst from the train, catching Ian, and Allen shot at the now enraged akuma, killing it.
He turned to Ian, whom Lenalee had placed safely back on the train. "Are you alright?" he asked, concern shadowing his voice as he deactivated his Innocence.
"Yes, I am, just a bit shaken…" was Ian's steady, but weak, reply. He sat down, Lenalee handing him a canteen of water.
Kanda scoffed at Allen, disgruntled because that infernal Beansprout had almost let a demon run away with the Innocence that was so direly needed. He turned and went to the part of the train that had not been destroyed to go back to sleep. Stupid Moyashi.
Allen laughed a little uneasily, plunking down on the ground next to Tim, still tired and very hungry from their previous fight for the Innocence.
"Well Timcanpy, thanks to you, we still have the Innocence and Ian with us." He said, smiling, as he patted the little golden golem. Tim fluttered his wings happily in response.
"Oi, Allen," Lavi yawned mightily, "It's a good thing you brought him this time, eh? Maybe next time—" Lavi was cut off as an explosion filled the air and three more followed. The bullets that the tree akuma had shot just detonated, filling the air with purple smoke.
"Bloody hel—" Lavi was cut off again as the coat rack proceeded to try and strangle him. Allen had been thrown sideways in one of the explosions; one of the grenades had been right next to him. He jumped to his feet, rushing to Lavi's aid as Lenalee smashed a bench that had been trying to attack her. Kanda had already sliced through the remaining furniture before it could jump to life. Ian looked scared, but he helped Allen disentangle Lavi from the coat rack before Mugen came out of nowhere and sliced the offending length of mahogany wood in half, purple sparks fading from the fatal cut.
"Lavi, are you okay?" Lenalee asked, fanning at the smoke that was just beginning to clear.
"Yeah, I'm fine. I just wonder where that came from… Perhaps it was that first akuma. This is the first time I've heard or seen of any demon's weapon being able to do this kind of thing. Allen, what's wrong?" Lavi hurried over to Allen when he saw his friend's complexion go ashen.
"T-T-Timcanpy…" he stuttered weakly, pointing at the golem. Tim had his wings wrapped around himself, tucked in the corner of the train, glowing luminously. He was shivering, the purple haze gathered around him like a blanket, the Innocence he had swallowed flaring through his now transparent body. An empty shell that had once been the akuma's bullet lay discarded besides him. Kanda, Ian, and Lenalee came over to see what was going on, shock beginning to appear on their faces.
"Tim…?" Lenalee ventured, her eyes widening as the little golem began to shudder more violently and glow even brighter. Suddenly Timcanpy fell on his face, violent spasms rocking the tiny round body, and Allen made to move and catch him but an extremely intense flare of light caused him and everyone else to fall back. A low sound, like a subsonic boom, echoed away from the general area Tim was in, rocking the train car.
Allen opened his eyes slowly, his vision still spotted from the flare up. Blinking back the spots, he pushed himself up and went to go to Timcanpy. But Timcanpy wasn't there anymore. In his place was a girl with golden wings wrapped around her shivering form, covering her body. Golden hair cascaded down her back, and a golden band encircled each wrist and ankle. The tail of a long whip that was wrapped around her waist poked out from the feathers, also gold, but more pearlescent. Allen's mind reared back in surprise and embarrassment, for she wasn't wearing any clothes, but it was steady enough to ask one thing:
"Timcanpy? Is that you?" Gold eyes opened up slowly at him, on the verge of tears and shaking, and one, single, almost invisible nod shocked every exorcist and the finder in the train car.
"Komui." Kanda's voice could be heard in the background behind the roaring in Allen's ears. "We have a situation."