It had been months since the last of the machines had began to die. Those who fell to the gas' disease eventually became the prey to the metal legs. But after a while, with no other organisms to power the gears of it's body, the creatures slowly started to die out.
Tadashi and a group of surviving students had taken the time to invent an antidote for the gas. But by the time they had figured it out, the machines had already began dying itself out. With no host to control, the contraption had no hope in surviving. The survivors helped in destroying whatever they could and help those who some how survived the hell on Earth.
It wasn't a huge surprise that only very few had survived around the world. S. were sent out, calls were made, and they did all they could to try to connect with anyone who wasn't one of the walking dead. The group agreed to leave Japan behind to round up survivors and restart the world as much as they could. Impossible, perhaps, but it was better than doing nothing at all.
Tadashi left the group to take a walk one last time in the place he had once considered home. The dead were splattered all over the street, making it almost impossible to make any kind of voyage. The smell was just as bad, if not worse, but everyone had seemed to be able to get used to it by now.
The bodies rotted away, some solo, others trapped in the machine's teeth that had long stopped working. Their hollowed out eyes and gapping mouths seemed to call out to him, pleading to be set free. But all Tadashi could do was close his eyes and look away.
He roamed to his and Kaori's former apartment. Tadashi took his time going over the bed they had shared, opened the compartment that contained their shoes and let his eyes wander over the feminine shoes that seemed to scream at him to be worn. By someone. Anyone. But he knew they'd most likely never be worn again. Unless some scavenger happened to survive and made themselves at home.
Leaving the apartment, Tadashi soon found himself at the gates of his uncle's house. The man no longer lived in the big house that loomed over him in a powerful stance. But Tadashi wore he could still feel his uncle's presence. If he closed his eyes, he could almost see his uncle's assistant, Yoshi-Yama open the door and greet him with a somber smile and far off look in her eyes. She really did love his uncle. The thought made a shiver go up and down his spine and he was forced to look away from the house. The last he had seen of his Uncle was when he had flown off in his own death machine, carrying away the woman who loved him the most in that damned world.
Wandering away from the city, he walked along a dirt path that was also littered with the carrion of human and animal flesh, all now united under one thing thing in common. Their death. Their sick and sadistic death that not even Satan himself deserved.
The path curved along thickets and over a hill as it lead to a view of of Tokyo and the water side for as far as the eye could see. But the only thing there to look at was the remainder of what once was a city at some point in time where, at one point, crowds of people walked and drove to school and work and the sky scrappers that had kissed the sky so dearly now was a shadow of what it had once been.
But it wasn't the city Tadashi was interested in. It was the thing that resided on the hill overlooking such a sad sight. A more advanced machine rested on the very top, as though it had been waiting for him. For all he knew it could have been. The legs were broken down with rust, the metal burnt from an impossible battle that could never have been won for the creature using the thing.
Tadashi took a seat and looked out at the city. It would have been such a normal act if it hadn't been for the situation at hand. After enough time, he finally found the will to move his lips.
"It's been a while. I'm sorry I didn't come sooner. We've been busy trying to end all of this." The air remained silent. "We've finally been able to take care of the gas problem. So that means you won't have to smell that God awful stench again. It really did stink. But we've all gotten used to it by now."
The air whistled in response and Tadashi turned to look at who he was talking to. The skeleton was yellowed and decayed, some bones missing and the skull crushed in from insects and rodents that had survived.
The skull seemed to grin at him with a sad hint. Tadashi knew he was probably imagining it, but it wouldn't go away.
"Kaori, you didn't deserve to die."
And he meant that. Sure they had their ups and downs, but he did love her. Tadashi imagined what life would be like then if she had survived. He was sure she'd be complaining about the stench and beg for him to do something about it. Tadashi chuckled at the thought then sighed, closing his eyes.
It'd be hell leaving her body behind. He wanted to give her a proper burial but it was impossible with all the wires and bones crushed within the machine. The bones would fall apart even more if he had tried. So he simply left flowers around her whenever he could. With whatever flowers he could find in that point in time.
Tadashi stroked the skull, a tear building up in his eyes. "I wish I could have saved you. I wish you could be here with me so we can start the world again together." This time he choked on his words. He never had been the one to get chocked up, but everyone seemed to be cracking. The reality was finally settling down and they all wouldn't wake up the next day with their loved ones and everything would be fine. That hope was long gone.
The sun peeked out from behind the city as dawn birthed the light of another day and soon another life. Everyone would be packed and ready to go in about an hour to travel to mainland and start from their, making their way over to the European countries. The U.S they'd worry about last.
But Tadashi couldn't find the will to move just yet from that spot. Not just yet. He gazed out over the city once more and the water front. Just like how he had all those months ago. But now, instead of it being the end, it was the beginning of a new start. And a new hope. Without Kaori by his side, he didn't know how he'd do it.
But Tadashi, if he concentrated hard enough, he could almost swear he felt Kaori's fingers brushing away at his hair and stroking his face with encouragement to move on. And he knew that, even though it may not be soon, he would be back. And he'd give her the burial she deserved. With that, he opened his eyes to not only a new look on reality, but to a new reason to live in this wasteland of a life.