So, actually I was thinking that most of my favorite pairings are rather violent or antagonistic. Or at least generates a lot of tension/violence. Then it gets me to thinking that aside from their original canon setting, it's a bit hard to have a violent setting that can still allow for many characters, yet also allow for violence—then I remembered Deadman Wonderland (—Spring 2011 anime, GET!). And then this multi-fandom AU is born. :D Stories can come from different fandoms, but they're all stand-alone from each other. Some ideas were also taken from CLOVER (a lovely manga from CLAMP :D)

fandom. Gintama
content. Takasugi Shinsuke/Kamui, hint of Kamui/Abuto; AU

title. a dead man's carnage

"You're not joining the fight?"

Kamui's feet are light against the steel floors, giving the impression that he's bouncing as he walks. The conditioned air is heavy around them, so his braided hair doesn't swing as much as it usually does when he makes his way to the lone person seated lazily at one of the plastic tables. Kamui notices the other occupants of the holding room start radiating away from him and his destination. One of the other occupants wearing the exact same standard-issue clothes as him gives him a look. A look that blatantly asks if he's new to this area, if he doesn't know the consequences of talking to the man radiating carelessness to the untrained eye.

Kamui's smile widens in response to the unspoken question; from the way the other occupant huffs and pointedly turns around, Kamui guesses that he didn't understand his smile.

Oh well.

"You do seem like the type to enjoy manipulating from the shadows," Kamui observes, circling the man wearing the exact same clothes but three sizes larger. Kamui gets this strange urge to hold the other by the shoulders, if only to stop the shirt from falling off. The sounds of the riot continue from beyond the holding room, with nearly all the prisoners—excuse me, research participants—involved in the seemingly never-ending brawl. Kamui gets another urge, but this time it doesn't involve the other's shoulders. He tells himself that it's fine as long as he doesn't take a look at the bloodbath occurring just a few meters away from him and he should be okay.

Kamui stands on the opposite side of table, waving cheerfully at the other guy. "My name's Kamui."

"Hmph," the other guy stands up slowly, Kamui's eyes following the movements diligently, so he doesn't miss the guy's left hand bracing itself on the table, while the guy's right hand darts out to take hold of his chin, bringing their faces close together, "I'm Takasugi Shinsuke."

Kamui knows his name, knows a bit about the other's well-documented and well-earned reputation in this sector, knows that the other's ability includes summoning a sword out of nowhere. Kamui knows and his eyes are on Takasugi the entire time, so he catches the blade with his right hand. Kamui wonders if it's fine that he's grinning now. Abuto always nags at him about how his grin can make people wet their pants in terror, after all. But he doesn't think this Takasugi guy is the type that can be terrorized by one harmless grin.

Kamui sees the other's right eye widen at his bold move. The pressure on the blade increases but Kamui doesn't relinquish his hold. Takasugi makes his sword disappear after a few tense moments; Kamui thinks it's a shame because he could have broken that blade into pieces if he just had ten more seconds. The thought disappears quickly, since he isn't the type to dwell on the past.

"You're an interesting kid," Takasugi Shinsuke murmurs, backs away then gives him a salute when guards start flooding the holding room. It seems that the riot has been settled and everybody is now being shipped off to their individual holding cells. Kamui is looking forward to the punishment they'll all undoubtedly receive whether they participated in the riot or not. After all, he's sure that he'll get to see Takasugi there again.

A year after the last time something manages to make his hands bleed, Kamui sets his sight on conquering the Thunder Sector. It's a random, dangerous thought—Abuto tells him as much. Kamui disregards his cellmate's words, as usual.

Everybody locked together with him are all aware that he's the most powerful person here—what's the harm of making that fact more official?

In a few minutes, the random thought turns into a goal.

And Kamui is the type who likes achieving his goals.

A few days before the end of year 2999, the sixteen-year-old Kamui successfully seizes the top of the Thunder Sector. He's a tad disappointed—it only took him two days to completely remove all those who opposed him within the sector's jurisdiction. Kamui wonders if he should have escaped from the Thunder Sector and wreaked havoc on another area instead.

"You idiot, did you have to kill all the leaders?" Abuto is banging his head against the controls that they have no idea how to use. Kamui thinks that Abuto's face is in danger if he keeps on doing that. "Now we can't ask anyone how to operate these!"

Kamui laughs, because Abuto's hand gestures are always so wild and expressive, something one wouldn't expect from a much older man. It's interesting. Kamui likes interesting things.

"Maa, maybe we can ask our neighbors?"

Abuto looks like he's hesitating whether to hit their airhead leader. "What, and they'll gladly lend us a hand? They'll waste no time taking over our section instead!"

"Worrying so much isn't going to get you far," Kamui spins on the swivel chair, Abuto's exasperated expression and the surrounding machineries blurring together, "if they try to attack us, I'll kill them too."

"I'm glad our captain is so confident," Abuto says after a few moments' pause.

Kamui stops playing with the chair once he notices Abuto leaving the control room. "Where are you going, Abuto~?"

"I'll set up our defenses." Abuto may be an old man, but he is a reliable ally. He's much better at talking to others too. Kamui knows that he isn't so good with convincing others to die for his sake. It's a good thing he has Abuto to do that job for him.

Kamui stares at the machineries looming in front of him once the sound of Abuto's footsteps faded away completely. Kamui idly wonders if anybody else knows about his secret, wonders if anybody else will ever know about his secret. The machines are all about the data of all the prisoners held in this sector, with the sole purpose of making sure the prisoners are all within the sector's control, to make sure that said prisoners are improving their CLOVER powers.

He doesn't mind being stuck here, training, but he has no interest in improving his CLOVER powers.

After all, he doesn't even have the slightest bit of CLOVER powers.

"Weren't you from the Lightning Sector?" Kamui smiles widely at the person across from him, even though his body is screaming at him for every movement he makes. He's pretty certain that Takasugi Shinsuke belonged to Thunder Sector's ally sector.

Takasugi shrugs at him, his clothes different from Kamui's prisoner attire, his clothes still a few sizes larger. "I work for the Research Sector."

Kamui whistles appreciatively, a bit impressed that the Research Sector is now stocking up on strong guys. Kamui is now sure that the Research Sector is preparing to backstab all the other sectors—they probably finished some big project and are preparing to unleash the result to the weaker sectors. No wonder they're starting to recruit strong CLOVERs. "You do know that they're just going to experiment on you after, right? Every Sector is the same… the allies of today are going to be enemies tomorrow. Everyone just wants power."

Kamui wants power too. Kamui stares at the steel bars separating him from the hallway and from Takasugi's form. He can probably break those steel bars, but the poison the Research Sector injected still hasn't completely left his bloodstream. He faintly wonders whether Abuto managed to escape. He still needs Abuto to help him out after he breaks out of this prison. It'll be troublesome to find another loyal ally, especially since they're all surely doubting his strength after Thunder Sector was overtaken by the Research Sector.

"I don't mind using them," Takasugi's voice echoes in the empty hallway, "I also don't mind being used by them."

"Isn't that nice," Kamui murmurs, aware that the prison cells surrounding his are empty because they've all been executed already. Is Takasugi here to give a private execution? If he can just free his hand, he can still block Takasugi's blade without problem. If he can't break the energy-draining shackles on his hands, he can always block the sword with his shoulder—surely his bones are tougher than some CLOVER-infused sword. "Why are you here anyway?"

Kamui is interested in Takasugi, sure, but Takasugi has no reason loitering around in the Research Sector's prison cells.

"I don't mind working with the Research Sector… but it's not challenging at all."

Kamui shivers from the malice in Takasugi's eyes. He curses the fact that he's imprisoned at the moment—there's nothing he wants more than to fight Takasugi here and now. "Heh, I have no interest in CLOVERs, so everything here is boring for me."

"Hmph," Kamui doesn't really know Takasugi Shinsuke aside from the moments when his curiosity becomes too much and he buys information regarding the man—but Kamui is sure that Takasugi crouching down to his eye-level is uncharacteristic of him, "a brat without a CLOVER leading all the Sectors is much more interesting, don't you think?"

Kamui's eyes widen in surprise.

Takasugi smirks at the obvious shock in his face. "They're executing you instead of running tests on you. It's not like rebelling and taking over sectors is considered bad. It can only mean that you are not important to them… it can only mean that you have no CLOVER capabilities at all."

Kamui bites his lip. The only people who knew about his secret were his father and useless sister—and he left them behind many years ago when he came here to search for stronger opponents. Now, another person is added to the list. Kamui doesn't believe in worrying too much about things, however. So he shrugs and regains his smile. "That's so cool! You're so smart! Or maybe you have psychic powers? Is that eyepatch hiding your psychic eye? And did you just call me a brat?"

"You only have three weeks to live," Takasugi ignores the lighthearted questions, "and it's a shame if someone as powerful as you meets his end this early."

"Mmm, is that so?" Kamui wonders whether Abuto knows about that timeline. Kamui tries to subtly stretch his legs, but there's still the persistent ache from the poison. Kamui's eyes follow Takasugi's movement—fluid and smooth—as he stands up.

"They'll probably kill you too if they see you being 'friendly' with me," Kamui offers helpfully as he hears the distant sound of footsteps, "they might even execute you before me~"

"Hmph," Takasugi uses his left hand to lift the long bangs covering his bandaged left eye; Kamui grins at the sight of four-leaf clover, CLOVER-4, glowing even under layers of bandages, "see you later, brat."

"Four is death, ne?" Kamui feels adrenaline pumping in his veins. "See you in hell, four-clover-san~"

"Stepping inside this execution platform… don't tell me you plan to die with me?"

Kamui's arms and legs are bound, his entire body wrapped with the newly-developed energy-sucking wires. He is still smiling though—partly because he's genuinely happy to see Takasugi again, partly because his smile seems to irritate the higher-ups watching the execution. The acting chairman of the Research Sector (Abou or Ahou—Kamui doesn't really care for his name) is making some speech about Kamui's death being a milestone in the Research Sector's history.

Kamui is rather relieved that Takasugi didn't undergo the same modification experiments Abou?Ahou? did; effectiveness in boosting one's CLOVER power aside, side-effects of the experiment seems to include deformed faces. Kamui rather likes Takasugi's face.

"That's not so bad," Takasugi murmurs, one hand already drawing out his sword, "though I'd prefer dying on more interesting circumstances."

Kamui hears the whispered conversations surrounding him—chants of 'KILL HIM, KILL HIM', orders of 'Kill Takasugi Shinsuke after he executes Kamui'—and his smile widens. "We'll both go to hell."

"Hell is more interesting than this place." Takasugi's smirk is enchanting—it's dripping with cruelty.

"We can go sightseeing there." Kamui opens his eyes wide to see the arc of the blade swing down on him.

Kamui falls.

Less than an hour later, it is the Research Sector that's in ruins instead.

"I guess this means I can't kill you yet," Kamui complains cheerfully, stretching his arms over his head. His movements are still sluggish compared to his usual speed, but it's not like there was anyone strong enough to warrant him using more than thirty percent of his capabilities.

"Hmph," is all that he manages to get out from Takasugi.

Kamui watches Abuto talk to Takasugi's allies. He's relieved that Abuto is still there. He may like Takasugi more, but that's because Takasugi is dangerous and unstable. Abuto is still going to be more useful when it comes to helping him reach his goals.

"So which Sector are we visiting next?" Kamui is fine with letting Takasugi decide; all he wants is to fight more powerful people.

"We can decide on that after you heal."

Well, Kamui is fine with joint decisions too.

"Oh? Does this mean you're worried about me?"

Takasugi slants him a look, the CLOVER-4 mark glowing a crimson red that reminds Kamui of the blood still on his hands.

"Hmph," is all Takasugi says before he makes his way to the Research Sector's control room.

Kamui grins and moves to follow Takasugi's retreating back.

He's indebted to Takasugi, but he can start paying back right now.


Well, I put 'END' there, but I'll probably include a stand-alone continuation somewhere LOL