Author's Note: Hello! This is my first Darker than Black fic, so my apologies if I get a name or two wrong.
Disclaimer: I don't own Darker than Black, cause if I did it would've had a happier ending with Hei and Yin.
Chapter 1- Schrodinger's Cat
The sea was calm as the cruise ship La Stella sat motionlessly in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. All that could be heard was the relentless banging of gunshots that filled the air, and screams of horror from the unlucky passengers on board. The deck of the cruise ship was stained red with blood that flowed down the wooden deck and dripped over the sides into the water below. Amidst the gunshots was the sound of bullets deflecting off metal as they bounced off an upright black coffin, presumably made of steel. The men firing at the coffin didn't rest even while seeing their bullets do nothing. From behind the coffin, a white-haired young man groaned quietly to himself.
"Some vacation this was..." the young man grumbled and tucked a strand of pure white hair behind his ear. The young man stared at the wooden deck in front of him and scratched his hair to think. The young man continued to stare at the wooden deck with his pale blue eyes reflecting the moonlight streaming down from above. The gunfire continued on, one bullet missing the coffin and ricocheting off the railing before cutting the young man across the cheek. "Ow."
The young man rubbed the bleeding cut on his face before he put his now bloody hand down onto the deck. A faint blue flow emitted from his body before his pupils glowed a bright red color. The wood beneath his hand began to rot slowly, and the rotting spread towards where the men firing were standing. With a loud crash, the deck beneath the men gave way and they all fell to the room below. The men shouted at each other in pain until one of the lifeboats came hurdling down the hole and onto their bodies. With a final crash, all was quiet again sans the sound of water leaking through the hole in the hull the lifeboat had made.
"What a shitty cruise this was," the young man said miserably as a girl with a long braid of black hair flowing down her back approached him silently. The young man glanced down the hole in the deck while he fished out a steel monkey puzzle from his pocket. He whistled softly while his hands fiddled with the puzzle. "Time to hit the road, January."
"What road?" the girl called January asked, clearly missing the point. The young man shook his head once with a sigh, his hands still trying to solve the puzzle. A ring from the young man's pocket made his hands stop before putting the puzzle away and taking out his cellphone. He flipped the phone open with ease and placed it to his ear.
"What's up, boss?" he asked the person on the other end while January prepared the other lifeboat for their escape from the now sinking ship. As January did that, however, a man glanced around the corner, a long knife at the ready in his hand.
"December. Return to base with January immediately," the person on the other end of the call said firmly. The young man December groaned quite loudly as the man with the knife slowly started to creep up behind him.
"I thought we were on vacation, boss," December whined childishly.
"Circumstances have changed," the person on the other end said before the man with the knife started to thrust the knife tip towards December's back. Before the knife could reach his back though, December's hand grabbed the man by the face without him turning around. December tightened his hold on the man's face before letting go. The man fell to the deck in a heap, his eyes glazed over.
"Sorry, boss, you were saying?" December asked while he slipped his hand into his jean pocket.
"Izanami is still alive," the person on the other end said.
Snow covered the ground between the trees, deep in the woods of Hokkaido. The only thing that disturbed the fallen snow were the deer that trotted through the woods, foraging for food. Camouflaged among the trees was a small wooden hut, the window fogged from the fire inside. One deer that came nearby stopped to stare at the hut. The deer seemed wary of the building as it stayed perfectly still. Unfortunately for the deer, that didn't help it as a hunting knife flew out of nowhere and impaled the deer in the neck in an instant. The deer fell over onto the snow while its friends, hidden behind the trees, rushed away as fast as they could, leaving their friend behind. The dying deer's legs twitched before slowly stopping, its life over.
The snow crunched underneath black boots that approached the dead deer. Gloved hands reached down and pulled the knife out of the deer's neck. The hunter sheathed his knife and heaved the deer up over his shoulder before making his way back to the hut, carefully stepping in the footprints he had already made. The hunter opened the door as much as needed for him to slip inside with the deer. The hunter glanced around outside before closing the door. Peeling off his coat and boots, the hunter dragged the deer over to a wooden stove and left it there to cook in a while.
The hunter pulled his gloves off and tossed them onto the wooden counter by the stove. He eyed the window cautiously before opening another door that led into a smaller room with a bed inside. The bed was occupied, but the hunter didn't seem to mind. He lit the lantern next to the bed, so as to cast light into the windowless room. The hunter stared at the girl in the bed with a sad look in his dead eyes. He slid an arm underneath the girl as he sat down on the edge of the bed. He lifted her up into a sitting position and wrapped his other arm around her, burying his face against her shoulder.
The lantern flickered, casting shadows across the sleeping girl's long silver hair and closed eyes. The hunter didn't lift his face from the girl's shoulder for some time. When he did, he laid her back down and pulled the blanket up to her neck. The hunter slowly stroked the girl's cheek with his hand, while his face was illuminated by the lantern. His dead eyes didn't reflected the lantern's light at all as they stayed fixed upon the girl's face. The hunter stayed like that for minutes before slowly rising to his feet and putting the lantern out. He stepped out of the room and gave a glance back at the girl in the bed.
"Yin..." Hei whispered quietly before closing the door.
The mechanized doors slid open to allow December and January into the meeting room where several people sat around a long wooden table facing the monitor on the wall across from the door. December and January sat down in the two empty seats closest to the doors. Sitting at the table with them were Kobayashi, Kirihara, August 7, and Madame Oreille. In front of the monitor stood a burly man in a high-class suit and tie.
"So, Boss Tanaka, what's the 411?" December asked the man. The man Tanaka didn't address December as he pressed a button on the table that closed and locked the doors behind December. December glanced back at the doors and clicked his tongue lightly for no reason.
"First, December and January. This is Goro Kobayashi from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications-" "Formerly from," Kobayashi corrected, and Tanaka nodded briefly before continuing. "He's here with his partner Kirihara and-"
"Madame Oreille. We've met," December interrupted, making the madame smirk mysteriously. Tanaka's vein twitched from being interrupted and he sat down in front of the monitor with his back to it.
"Regardless, they're here to aid us," Tanaka said, casting a glare at December. December disregarded the glare calmly and eyed the monitor. Kobayashi looked to December and January sternly. December noticed and smiled back at Kobayashi.
"My alias is Matthew Cordovan, codename "December", Messier Code RM-841. Beside me is Priscilla Reuther, codename "January", Messier Code AX-913. A pleasure to meet you," December said politely and Kobayashi turned his attention back to Tanaka. January was silently staring at the table before her eyes moved to the moving bulge in Kirihara's bag where Mao was hidden.
"That was more than necessary, December," Tanaka remarked and didn't wait for December's response before pressing another button, causing the lights to dim. The monitor came to life and showed an enlarged photo of a crowded Tokyo street. "16 hours ago we received this photo from an agent on patrol."
"Oh yay, people," December remarked sarcastically. Tanaka motioned slightly to January who nodded and slammed her heel down on December's toes. December jerked in pain and twitched as Tanaka turned his chair to look at the monitor. He pressed a button by the monitor and a section of the photo was selected and zoomed in.
"The agent found this startling info," Tanaka stated, and December raised his head a little to see the blurry outline of a silver haired man. Tanaka turned a small knob by the monitor and the picture focused to show the man clearly. Kirihara jolted slightly and August stared at the man. Tanaka looked at their reactions and nodded grimly. "After examining the physical data on Izanami, we've determined a 97% similarity between Izanami and this man."
"I thought Izanami was a girl," December said and quickly moved his feet away before January could stomp on them, which she didn't. Tanaka looked at December and slid a folder across the table to him. December picked the folder up and opened it to look at the contents.
"Shion Pavlichenko, otherwise known as Izanagi, has the ability to create copies of objects and people. These copies are completely identical to the originals, however, Madame Oreille tells us that there's a flaw in the copies of people he creates," Tanaka explained while December leafed through the folder filled with information on Shion, including his photo.
"So, this kid created a copy of Izanami?" December asked and Tanaka frowned before nodding slowly. December closed the folder and handed it to January, but she shook her head, so he put it back on the table.
"We have no idea if this copy of Izanami possesses the same powers, but the possibility of a second Izanami is high," Kobayashi stated and August looked to Tanaka.
"Where's the agent that took this photo?" he asked and Tanaka pressed a button on the monitor to change it to a gruesome photo of a man with his head blown apart and a gun in his hand.
"The morgue. He shot himself shortly after returning," Tanaka said gravely and December leaned back in his chair.
"Well, that certainly sounds like Izanami's doing. So we're going to go hunt down this copy and kill him?" December asked and Tanaka shook his head.
"No, you and January have a different mission," Tanaka stated and the monitor changed again to a photo of inside Hell's Gate. December and January looked at the monitor in unison while Tanaka adjusted his tie. "Shortly after the Izanagi incident months ago, we sent a team into the Gate to retrieve Izanagi and Izanami's bodies. However, not only could we not find them, but only one of the members returned. He then jumped off the wall in a fit of insanity a day later. We found this photo in his headgear after his death."
"All I'm seeing is a bridge and water," December stated and January noticed the bulge in Kirihara's bag suddenly stop moving. Tanaka seemed annoyed and enlarged the photo before focusing it on the water underneath the bridge. December perked up and fell backwards onto the floor hard. Everyone at the table was silent, with the exception of December's muttered curses as he pulled himself up off the floor. On the screen was an observation spectre that was coming out of the water.
"The doll that Izanami had possessed is still alive. December, you and January are to find BK-201, who Kirihara says took the doll's body with him as he fled Tokyo, and bring the doll back here. If the doll is still alive, then it's possible it will have retained some of Izanami's powers. Find her before those powers return," Tanaka said and with that, December dusted himself off and grinned widely.
Hei woke with a start, grasping at the couch and his chest as cold sweat rolled down his face. His breaths were ragged as he stared at the ceiling. Hei sat up and shakingly stood up before slowly stepping towards a basin of water by the fireplace. He fell to his knees and splashed his face with the water, trying to wake up completely. Hei dried his face off with a towel from the kitchen area and looked to the door leading to Yin's room. Silently, Hei opened the door, even though Yin wouldn't wake even if he did so loudly, and he peered into the dark room. He closed his eyes and sat down on the edge of the bed to stroke the side of Yin's face. Hei opened his eyes to stare at Yin's face as the light from the fireplace barely illuminated it.
Hei had woken from a nightmare, but not any nightmare. He recalled being in the core of Hell's Gate, looking around for Yin hurriedly, until he saw her facing away from him. When he had rushed over to her, Yin turned into her observation spectre and disappeared, leaving a golden human-like shape in her place. Hei rubbed his eyelids with his free hand and stood up from the bed. He fished around for a spare blanket and laid down on the floor next to the bed. Hei closed his eyes and slowly resumed sleeping as the fire in the fireplace flickered gently.