Outside, Saya and Solomon were engaged in a sword fight. Saya headed for Solomon, attempting to strike him but Solomon easily blocked it. For a long time Saya had tried again and again to try and strike or impale him however Solomon was able to block and avoid each hit she delivered. The two exchanged powerful blows while Diva watched them in amusement from a safe distance.
She swung her sword at Solomon but again, Solomon countered it. The force he used was so strong that it broke off the tip of the blade Saya was wielding, sending it flying at a far distance. It landed on the ground, a few inches away from Diva's feet.
Saya was panthing heavily, unable to catch her breath. She paused, already worn out from the battle while Solomon stood before her looking fine, as if he never got into a fight in the first place.
"That's enough, isn't it, Saya? There's no reason to fight anymore," Solomon said in his calm, controlled voice. He was extending his hand to her, inviting her, urging her to cease the fight and join them instead. Yes, to him, the battle between Saya and Diva, the two Queens, the only two beings connected by blood, was utterly meaningless. "Now come with us…"
Saya gave him an unsure, bewildered look. She stared at his hand, her face filled with confusion. For a moment, she seemed as though she would join them. Wordlessly, Saya slashed at his hand instead, creating a long cut across his skin. That act alone already indicated that she refused to come along.
Diva erupted into wild, childish laughter. She pointed at him and cried out, "Solomon got rejected!" Solomon merely stared at his hand, his expression unchanged, as the wound healed instantly.
Saya's muscles were aching badly and she felt extremely weak. But despite that, she did not want to yield to Solomon, even when his offer was so tempting. The thought of stopping this fight, not having to go against Diva, her only sister, her only real family, was a dream come true. But then everyone was depending on her, her friends, her family. She was the only hope for humanity. And seeing what Diva had done to Riku...feeding on him, almost killing him was enough to make her blood boil.
But then suddenly, Saya's breath caught. All the remaining strength she still had drained away so unexpectedly, she could hardly understand what had happened. She legs felt weak and she fell to her knees. The red glow in her eyes quickly faded as well and she lost her fighting instincts. "What's going on?" she asked herself, shocked. The pain within her body made her stumble to the grass and she curled on the ground, lying helplessly before both Diva and Solomon.
Diva giggled. "You don't have enough blood, sister." Saya could hardly understand what Diva was saying to her. "It's a smorgasbord all around you, too."
"I'm different from you…" Saya struggled to say. She couldn't breathe. Her body could not move as well, it was as if she were bound by invisible chains. Her mind was hazy….she could barely even think straight. The world around her seemed to crumble and waver before her.
"No; we're the same…" those were the final words Saya heard before everything went black.
Images whirled around her. She could see each and everyone of her friends and family and everyone else she had been fighting for in her still unconscious mind. Light from nowhere suddenly filled her eyes. She blinked.
"Saya!" a familiar voice called to her. She spun her head around. At a distance, her father, George, stood, waving his arms to her. Beside him Riku was doing the same.
"Saya nee-chan!" he said happily.
"C'mon, Saya. We're going on a trip together." Kai placed his hands on his hips, a relaxed and friendly expression on his face. He beckoned to her.
Saya nodded and ran to them. She was so happy. This had never happened befor and yet right now, she was experiencing it.
But something was wrong. No matter how fast Saya tried to approach them, the family before her still remained at a far distance. She tried to run harder, faster. But nothing changed. They were starting to fade in the darkness.
"Saya, hurry up or we're leaving you," Kai said nonchalantly.
"Saya nee-chan's so slow!" Riku said in his childish voice. Both vanished.
"W-wait! Wait for me!" Saya cried after them. She held out her hand before the last fading figure before her.
"Saya…" George said softly. He disappeared as well.
"No! Wait! Please… Please wait for me! Don't leave me behind…"
Her sobs echoed in the emptiness.
Saya slowly opened her eyes. Everything was dark. She blinked. Once. Twice. Was this a dream? She could hardly tell. Reality seemed to be no more than a delusion to her. She was lying on the cobblestoned floor. She sat up weakly in a sitting position. There was a soft tinkling in the air. Chains? Saya looked down and realized her wrist and feet were shackled. She was chained to the wall. At the far end was a small, bright torch, which was her only source of light. The light cast long shadows across the floor. The eerie darkness around her frightened her.
Was this another dream? Saya grimaced. Her whole body was aching terribly. No, it wasn't a dream. In dreams, nothing hurt. Even if she were slapped directly on the face, shot by a gun, stabbed through the heart, or left to bleed to death in the forgotten shadows, it never hurt. But in here everything felt so real. The pain felt so real. So this wasn't a dream after all…
Saya blinked again as her eyes tried to adjust to the dim light. Where was she? She was confused. She tried to recall the past events. But her mind was so cloudy, she could hardly think of much. Nothing came to her. She wiped a tear that had rolled down her pale cheek. Was she crying? She felt so sad. Then she recalled her dream. But it was so blurry. All she could remember was the somber expression of her father before he disappeared.
Before she knew it, a few drops of tears fell on the cold, hard ground. She was crying. She just woke up from a dream in a cold, dark dungeon and now she was crying. That was all she could do. Cry like a weakling. Cry when she was upset.
There were footsteps outside. Saya grew alarmed. Quickly, she wiped her tears dry and sniffed before the large iron door at the far end just below the side of the torch opened. The stranger approached her slowly. Saya merely stared at the person before her. She could hardly make out the man's face from the shadows.
"I see you're awake now," the man said in his dull voice.
Saya blinked. She said nothing.
The man stared at her, as if he were studying an interesting specimen. Saya stiffened under his gaze. It was only a few moments before he glanced back at his shoulder.
"I've brought you a special guest," he said, his features brightening slightly.
"Hi," Diva's head popped out from the man's side.
Diva! Saya was caught by surprise.
"It's good you're awake now," Diva said, stepping out completely from behind the man. "You were enjoying your sleep so much I just wanted to smack you to wake you up."
Enjoying? "What am I doing here? Why am I chained?" Saya demanded.
Diva smiled sweetly. "Why, I simply provided a home for you. Don't you like it? See? It's even nice, comfortable and dark, so you could have some privacy."
"Home?" Saya repeated harshly.
"Isn't it obvious?" Diva replied flatly. Her voice grew into a more satiric tone. "Killing you would have been a waste, even if you were completely defenseless. I figured I'd have my fun first."
"Release me at once!" Saya said angrily.
"Not going to happen," Diva replied, her voice now childish. Saya glared at her, her eyes instinctively turning blood-red. Diva ignored her reaction. Instead, she continued, "You see, I was locked for almost my entire life in that horrible tower. It's unfair if you don't go through the same torture, don't you think?"
"No! Let me out! Now!" Saya struggled and pulled at the chains. Normally, a human would barely be able to lift the shackles in the air because of the size and weight of the chains. But to Saya it hardly even mattered. And yet, despite that, she was unable to free herself. A look of bewilderment and irritation came across her face.
Diva giggled after seeing how Saya's efforts to free herself come to naught. "What's wrong, sister? Are the chains too difficult for you to handle?"
Saya glowered at her. Diva smirked as a response. "It's your turn to suffer isn't it, sister? You'll soon feel the pain of being left out with no one to care for you. While you lay here forgotten in the darkness, I'll be outside, singing and playing in the sun. It would just be like before. But it would be different, wouldn't it? While I'm happy and free, you are not!" The thought seemed to strike her as funny.
"You can't imprison me here forever. I'll escape sooner than you think," Saya warned.
"I know," Diva replied, as if what Saya said was already expected. "I have my children to watch over you so that would be no problem."
"That…that won't stop me." Saya's voice was laced with uneasiness. Even she was doubtful of her own capabilities.
"Yes it would," Diva argued.
"It will not…"
It was no use arguing. Diva was toying with her. Saya knew she was offering Diva amusement even when she never intended to. The knowing made her hold her tongue.
Diva knew that she had won in the argument. It was not an argument technically, but to her it was. And she beat her sister, partly because Saya grew irritated. It was a simple thing that would hardly even matter but Diva found it otherwise.
"Well, whatever." She dismissed the matter, suddenly losing interest. "You won't escape anyway, even when you insist that you could. It's rather easy to say so than to do so." She turned to her grim chevalier who had been watching both she and Saya in silence. "I'm hungry, Amshel. I want you to get something worth eating."
"Of course, Diva," Amshel lowered his head, placing his hand over his chest.
"Let's go now."
Amshel proffered his arm formally. Instead of giving the proper response, Diva clung to him like a child. The old chevalier looked down on her with fondness. He and Diva headed for the door. Within moments, they had appeared by the entrance.
"Hey…" Saya called softly. She did not want to be left out. She did not want to stay in a dungeon in the darkness. She tried to reach out but the chains held her back.
The door opened. Diva and Amshel stepped out.
"Wait…" she was turning desperate now.
As the door closed, she saw Diva glance back at her, a smile beaming on her face. "Don't worry, sister. I will see you tomorrow."
The door shut tightly with enough force to give a heavy sound. Then there were a few footsteps which soon faded. Everything was silent.
Saya stared at the door, hoping that it would open and someone would come back to set her free. But nothing happened. She waited patiently. The seconds stretched into minutes and nothing stirred. Already, cramps were forming in her body. She moved and tried to shake it off.
Diva stepped outside into the sunlight. She and Amshel had left Saya in her prison cell and gone through a gloomy small corridor, then up the flight of stone steps until they reached the ground level. Diva stepped out and accidentally trod on Amshel's foot. Amshel said nothing, in fact did not even react. His queen made no attempt to apologize. After all, he was inferior to her.
Amshel pushed on the heavy metal gate, the very entrance to the dungeon. He was about to place a lock on the door when Diva said in a rather critical voice, "I decided to visit sister Saya everyday. There's no need to lock it. She can't get out however you see it."
"Of course," the ever-so-obedient chevalier responded, seeming as if he were at fault.
"Good." Diva skipped to the large blue house, not even caring about leaving her faithful chevalier behind. She suddenly stopped and turned to Amshel. "Hurry up and get my meal. I want young ones by the way." She said nothing more and headed to the house in an easy, lighthearted pace, humming her song.
Amshel watched Diva go. "My beloved queen…" he murmured and vanished within moments.
Diva entered the large house. Inside, she went around. Someone was seated on the sofa in the living room.
"Oh, Nathan. There you are." Diva headed to a man with blond hair wearing such rather girlish clothes, his purple suit revealing his chest.
"Hmm? What's wrong, my dear? Did you need anything?" the lax chevalier asked in a casual tone.
"No, not really. I already told Amshel to get my meal." She was already beside Nathan.
"I see." Nathan leaned back and peered at Diva with interest. "How has your sister been doing? Hopefully she's still alive."
"You care for sister more than me?" Diva inquired hastily, pouting.
"No, no. Of course not." Nathan smiled. "I was simply wondering."
"Oh. Good." The pout was replaced by a cheerful smile once more. "Sister Saya was already awake when Amshel and I paid her a visit."
"She still seems okay. I plan to see her everyday. Isn't that great?"
"Why, yes. It is. It's wonderful. I never thought you would be so thoughtful."
"It's boring here anyway. There's nothing else to do."
"Which reminds me…" Nathan crossed his legs, placing his arm there and leaning his chin on his clenched fist. "I somehow recall that sort of setting. While you were locked away in that tower, Saya paid you visits. Am I not mistaken?"
"Yes. Exactly. It would be fun to use that setting, especially now that she's the one who's suffering."
"Ah, yes. It sounds exciting."
"'sounds'?" Diva repeated, giving him a piercing look.
"I mean, it is exciting." A smile quirked on the corners of his mouth.
"Darn it!" Kai punched the wall. Pain shot through his arm but he ignored it. He leaned his hot forehead against the cool, concrete wall.
"Kai…" David said grimly. His eyes were downcast.
"What's happened to Riku? Will he be alright?" Kai got up from his seat at once. Hope was burning in his eyes.
"I—your brother…" David began.
A chill ran up Kai's spine. His expression fell. He knew what David was going to say.
David lowered his head respectfully. "Riku did not make it… Forgive me for bringing in such tragic news."
"No…it can't be." He stared unbelievingly at David. "Tell me you're lying! Tell me this is just a joke!" He held David's shoulders frantically. He tried to laugh it off. It was joke wasn't it? David was just trying to the life out of him, right? His smile still held little hope. "You're a good joker, David! That was funny!"
David stared at him, as if he had gone mad. "Stop it, Kai. I'm not joking. Riku is dead."
Kai's breath caught. His grip tightened on David's shoulders.
He yelled in frustration. He did not care whether any of the Red Shield members would hear him or not. Riku is dead! Dead! He's gone. He's dead! His mind screamed. He bit his lower lip to prevent himself from sobbing. It did not work. Soon, tears streamed down his pale cheeks. He couldn't do anything to save his brother. All he could do was call out his name. That was all. And now, his family was gone. Saya was missing and Riku was dead.
He felt so useless and empty. He slumped against the wall and sank to his knees. Saya was his only family now. He had to go find her. But he felt so lonely without Riku by his side. How could he look for Saya now?
"Haji…" Kai muttered under his breath.
So that's all—for now. This is my first story and I did my best to make this work presentable so I hoped you guys liked it at the very least.
Well, I'm not so good with stories but hey, I was inspired—in one way or another. And I guess my way of writing wouldn't be really one-sided so that everyone could get a fair part. And, uh, forgive me if this first chapter wasn't so entertaining. Especially with the Kai part. Or maybe everything's boring. Oh well. Who cares?
Anyhow, please feel free to give your opinions and comments.