A/N: I am back with the final chapter of "Wild Card". It's been a crazy eleven months and I almost gave up at one point but thanks to my supporters I did it and I couldn't have done it without you. Here is the conclusion of "Wild Card" and tune in at the end for details of my next Gunslinger Girl fanfic. Happy V-E Day!
Disclaimer: I don't own Gunslinger Girl
All was quiet outside the mansion where Bell and the Padania had settled into. Cristiano had left and guards were stationed outside to keep an eye out while inside Bell and the others were getting ready for the oncoming attack. And now the time had arrived.
"I see three guards here and a dozen more around the compound." said Rico using her binoculars to scout the area while everybody remained hidden just out of view so the Padania couldn't see them.
"You blokes have silencers?" asked Peter licking his lips for a piece of Robert Bell.
"Of course." answered Jean.
"Perfect." said Peter with a sinister grin on his face and placed his katana on his left hip, "Right, then follow me."
"If shows any sign of turning on us I want to shot him but not to kill." said Jose as they followed him.
"What for my signal." said Peter as he snuck up behind one of the guards.
"Man, this wait around really sucks." sighed the guard before Peter covered the man's mouth his left hand while his right hand grabbed the bayonet from his back waistband and drove it into the guard's back.
"Don't fight it. Just let death sweep you away." said Peter as the man died but the other two guards had caught wind of Peter.
("We have an intruder!") called on of the guards as they both ran over to Peter.
"Now!" called out Peter and Agency members opened fire with their silenced guns killing the two men.
"Now the other guards will know were here." said Jose unhappy Peter had just given away them away to the guards.
"Exactly." smiled Peter as the other guards charged at the Agency members.
"We have intruders!" called out one guard.
"Leave them to me." smiled Peter highly sadistic as he grabbed the handle of his katana and easily killed the guards before charging over to the door of the mansion.
"Okay, listen up." said Jean as everybody took their position, "We'll have two teams go around the back..."
"Banzai!" cried out Peter sounding like a deranged madman as the kick open the door and began killing everything that moved with his katana.
"That bastard just gave us away." growled Hilshire.
"He's come along away from ripping the wings off birds." noted Alfonso as Peter finished slaughtering the Padania in the foyer.
"About two dozen are coming." said Henrietta.
"You deal with them but remember Bell's ass is mine!" yelled Peter who quickly charged off to kill the target of his revenge while simultaneously killing anybody in his way.
"Take the mansion and spare nobody. After that we'll take Langsford." ordered Jean and everybody nodded their understanding and went about following suit.
"Come out wherever you are!" called Peter sinisterly as he cut down Padania most of who were too afraid to fight back with between Peter's reputation and the way he was clearly enjoying the massacre he carried out, "You can run but you can't hide!"
"Freeze!" cried out one unfortunate Padania as he tried to surprise Peter only to come across the carnage Peter had left in his wake.
"Hello." said Peter with obvious malevolence in his voice as he quickly grabbed the Padania by the collar and slammed him into the ground,"Where is Bell?"
"I...I..don't know." answered the terrified Padania quivering as he was certain that he was at the mercy of the Devil incarnate.
"Wrong answer!" yelled Peter driving his katana into the man's thigh which caused him to scream out in pain while blood began to gush out.
"He's in the study above us. It's the third door on the right." cried the Padania.
"Good man." replied Peter before cutting the man's head clean off with his katana and then took the guns off of the dead men before bolting upstairs and reaching the study in no time at all.
"Ready or not. Here I come." said Peter before kicking the door open. It was a large study with several bookcases on the wall and a desk near the back wall with a leather chair facing away from the door.
"Oh my. I go through all the trouble of organizing a welcoming committee for you and just break-in, kill all the people I brought together and barge into my study. How rude Peter." said Bell before turning around to come face to face with Peter Langsford for the first time in either man's life.
"We meet at last." said Peter overcome with a rush of emotions while remaining a cool composure.
"For ten-years you have been terrorizing my organization. I only tried to help those who needed it but the spotlight brought on by your ambush of my employees in London led to a lot of slander which ruined my company. But not content you've seen it upon yourself to track down and kill my employees personally leading to a decade long path of blood and slaughter." said Bell.
"What a load of bollocks." spat Peter, "You ran a ruthless crime syndicate that killed the Meadows family including my lover and daughter. It's for them, James MacIntyre and everybody else you've ever hurt that I'm going to kill you."
"Mr. Meadows shouldn't have fallen behind then nothing ever would have happened and the same to the "other people" you vaguely mentioned." replied Bell calmly, "As for MacIntyre, that worthless piece of dirt got what was coming to him. I had no need for anybody as low as him."
"I'm sick of your lies!" yelled Peter who then charged at Bell, jumping on his desk and swing only to have the Scotsman roll-out-of-the-way in time.
"I was really hoping you'd come today. You've been such a thorn in my side I really just want to end this." said Bell pulling a gun from his pocket with his right hand while holding his cane in his left hand.
"I feel the same way." replied Peter who heard the hammer on the gun being pulled back by Bell. This caused him to put his katana back into its sheath and pull out one of the guns he stole off the dead Padania.
"I know you're planning something Peter. You're not the type of person to cower." said Bell.
"You're right about that!" cried out Peter jumping out from behind the desk and firing at Bell who moved outside the office using the door as a shield.
"You'll have to be smarter than that to defeat me." said Bell mockingly but when he jumped out from behind the door to fire at Peter he saw the leather office chair he had been sitting in flying right towards him.
"I know this won't be easy. But I like a challenge." replied Peter jumping over the desk charging at Bell while opening fire.
"You're a fool if you think you'll get me that way." said Bell as he ran off with Peter in tow.
"So you just used the Padania as pawns. How like you." said Peter as he ran after Bell.
"Human life means nothing." called back Bell who jumped out from behind a corner firing a few shots which Peter managed to dodge.
"Did you kill Cristiano as well?" asked Peter who fired a few shots of his own missing Bell.
"That lowly piece of garbage took off." said Bell who turned around and fired off several shots as he ran, "Looks like your government buddies will miss him."
"Though situations make for strange bed fellows." said Peter firing back Bell.
"It doesn't matter. I'll still get away no matter what." said Bell firing the last of his bullets before discarding his gun and pulling out another.
"No way! I'm sending you to Hell where you belong!" called out Peter who discarded his gun for another one of the sidearms he swiped off the Padania.
"If I'm going to Hell then I'm taking you with me!" called out Bell as tucked his cane between his pants and belt then bolted across a large foyer in the middle of the mansion.
"Sounds great to me!" called back Peter running down the same foyer. Both men aimed two guns at each other and opened fire but they were moving so quickly that no shots actually made contact.
"I haven't had this kind of fun in ages." laughed Bell.
"John Woo would definitely be proud of that last skirmish." replied Peter who saw Bell running off and quickly went after him.
"So you came after me. Good man." called Bell toying with Peter who was quickly becoming irate while losing site of his target.
"You were smart to distract me in the foyer and I know you're trying to manipulate my emotions so I make a mistake but it won't happen." replied Peter who drew his Glock. After a few minutes he saw movement and opened fire only to realize it was a merely a Republican Faction member not Bell.
"You did make a mistake and if I wanted to piss you off then I would mention that slut you called a girlfriend." said Bell touching a nerve for Peter.
"You bastard!" yelled Peter briefly losing control of his emotions.
"This is getting better by the moment." said Bell whose voice haunted Peter. After ten minutes Peter turned a corner and spotted Bell taking a breather against a wall with his can again at side.
"Got ya." smiled Peter sinisterly as he charged after Bell and began firing only to have the elderly man jump behind a door.
"You'll have to do better than that." said the Scotsman taunting Peter.
"Son of a bitch." growled Peter who quickly checked the cartridge on his gun and made the terrible discovery he was out of bullets.
"I guess you don't care about that family after all." said Bell ripping at Peter who put his gun back into his waistband and again drew his katana.
"I guess I'll have to do this old school." said Peter who then charged into the room where Bell was only to dodge a rocking chair that nearly took his head off.
"I know you can do better." said Peter moving into to attack but being cut off by Bell.
"Now we're even." smiled Bell now wielding a cavalry Sabre in his right-hand and his cane in the left, "I found this Sabre here when we first arrived here Peter, it's a cavalry Sabre used in by soldiers of the Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy. East meets West sword duel."
"Beautiful." replied Peter smiling as he and Bell both fought for dominance.
"I couldn't agree more." replied Bell who then struck Peter in the side of his right thigh with his cane.
"It's sad to see you resort to such cheap tricks." said Peter as Bell pushed him out of the office and against the wall across from the doorway.
"I don't give a damn about tactics." replied Bell who charged at Peter swinging his Sabre to take the Brit's head off.
"Me either." said Peter who dodged out-of-the-way as Bell slashed at the wall but Bell was quick enough to spin around and slash at Peter before he had time to make a counteroffensive driving Peter back near a flight of stairs.
"I'm afraid this won't be a pleasant trip." said Bell who swung at Peter, but Peter moved out of the in time causing Bell to fall down the stairs to the first floor.
"That's what you get for that awful pun!" called out Peter who then went to a nearby wall, got a running start and jumped onto the banister riding it down before jumping off at the bottom and raising his sword to cut down Bell who was just getting up after his fall while holding his right hip. However, Bell noticed Peter and at the last second raised his Sabre cutting into Peter's right kidney.
"Fuck!" cried out Peter in pain as he hit the marble floor hard while Bell hobbled back up.
"You almost had me there but you weren't quick enough." said Bell who again attacked Peter but now had a noticeable limp from his fall.
"I'm not going down that easy." spat Peter as he rose to his feet while placing his hand over his right kidney and clutching his katana in his right hand.
"Then I guess I'll have to cut you down myself." smiled Bell who charged at Peter swinging.
"Dammit, the old bastard's actually beating me." said Peter to himself as Bell forced him down a hallway.
"What's wrong Peter?" asked Bell tauntingly, "You were doing fine a short while ago and now you're barely able to stand. What a pity."
"I can't do it. I can't defeat Bell. I'm a bloody failure like my drunken father." said Peter to himself losing hope and the will to continue before being interrupted by Bell striking Peter in the right kidney with his cane. Bell then swung with his Sabre but Peter ducked and fell to the ground. Upon standing back up, Peter realized his back was toward the window.
"It's about time I end this," said Bell who charged right at Peter with his Sabre ready to end the fight and Peter was ready to accept this death.
"I'll always be here for you." echoed the voice of Elizabeth in Peter's head from he day when his mother died.
"Elizabeth. You never gave up on me and neither should I." said Peter to himself getting his confidence back he reached up and grabbed Bell then through the Scotsman out the window to the lawn, "I will never give up until I've killed you myself!"
"So he's gotten a second wind." mused Bell now bloody before Peter jumped outside and the two continued their fight in the moonlight only this time it was Peter driving back Robert Bell.
Meanwhile the fighting inside had all but ended as the Agency members had killed the Padania and secured the mansion.
"The whole mansion is secure but no sign of Cristiano." said Jose as the Agency members regrouped in the main foyer where they entered.
"He must have escaped." said Jean not pleased somebody had gotten away, "What about Langsford?"
"I couldn't find him or Bell anywhere." said Hilshire.
"I bet he's already left us here." added Triela hoping to get her hands on Peter once all was said and done.
"Fan out and find him. If he has left we'll set up a perimeter around the area." ordered Jean and everybody followed.
"Damn. He's getting for focused now." said Bell to himself as he dodged a thrust from Peter's katana. Peter then swung again but Bell ducked and drove his Sabre into Peter's right thigh hit Peter his in the chest with his cane knocking the Englishman into the bushes under neath the windows.
"You won't stop me!" spat Peter defiantly which caused Bell to come after him again but as Peter rose threw his head between Bell's legs and back flipped the older man through another window and into the mansion's ballroom.
"Oh God." cried bell softly in pain as not only had he become even bloodier but the effect of the battle was taking its effect on his body. He was starting to fall behind the younger Peter.
"It's time we end this." said Peter jumping through the window and now continuing their fight on the ballroom floor. Peter was winning for several minutes before Bell drove his Sabre right into Peter's stomach.
"How does that feel?" asked Bell mockingly who grabbed Peter's katana and threw it across the floor while Peter spewed up blood having lost a fair amount already. Bell the pulled the Sabre back and swung to drive it into Peter's forehead but he Brit grabbed Bell's wrist with his left hand while using his right to grab the bayonet in his back waistband which he used to stab Bell in the hand.
"That felt pretty damn good." answered Peter mockingly as Bell dropped the Sabre. Peter then used his Judo moves; kicking Bell in the head several times before knocking him to the ground with a standing side kick. Peter then jumped onto Bell's chest, punched him a dozen times then wrapped his hand's around Bell's throat intent on ending the man's life with his own hands. Then the door to the ballroom swung open.
"Mr. Langsford!" called Henrietta as she aimed her FN P90 at both men.
"Hello Henrietta. I'll be only a minute longer." replied Peter who kept strangling Bell until he went limp.
"I heard the window break." explained Henrietta as Peter walked over to her passing his katana.
"It's all right." said Peter overcome with emotion but moments before he reached the girl a single shot rang out and Peter fell to his hands and knees.
"You really are a fool Peter." said Bell smiling as he rose holding a revolver he had kept hidden in his pocket, "Either that or I'm just a great actor."
"Mr. Langsford!" cried out Henrietta still unforgiving about Milan but too compassionate to not care about Peter as the bullet wound in his back gushed blood but before she could move Bell shot Henrietta in the right knee causing the girl to fall to the ground.
"I don't know where you came from you little brat but I can't let you leave." said Bell as he grabbed his limped over to her using his cane to support himself more than usual than shooting Henrietta in the right elbow so she couldn't use her gun.
"Goodbye." said Bell aiming his revolver at Henrietta's head but as he fired Peter rallied all the strength he had and jumped in front of Henrietta taking the bullet to the chest.
"Mr. Langsford!" cried out Henrietta no believing what she had just seen.
"What a fool. At least I've rid myself of his once and for all." spat Bell before turning his attention back to Henrietta.
"They use little girls as assassins so don't be fooled." rang the words of Cristiano in Bell's mind.
"So I guess he was being honest. No matter." said Bell then put his revolver in his waistband and rose his cane above his head. Bell then struck Henrietta repeatedly with the cane about a dozen times before breaking the wooden cane over her head.
"I can't let..Jose down again." moaned Henrietta as she still moved.
"What they hell are you?" asked Bell angry and unsettled that Henrietta was still moving but before he could do anything else they received company.
"Henrietta!" cried out Jose as the others from the Agency stormed into the ballroom. Thanks to cyborg's improved hearing and the lack of any other noise it was easy to hear the window breaking and the gunshots coming from the room.
"Not another step!" yelled Bell knowing he was out numbered and trapped he grabbed Henrietta and jammed the barrel of his revolved against her head.
"You bastard." spat Jose irate at Bell's actions.
"Peter already threw his life away to protect her." said Bell motioning to Peter lying lifeless on the ground.
"He actually protected her." said Triela amazed by the selfless actions of a man who until recently they had known as a sociopath.
"He did and if you care about this little abomination then you'll do as I say." replied Bell confident he had the upper hand, "I want a private leer jet, $ 100, 000 unmarked Euros, and a yacht."
"No deal." said Jean determined to never negotiate with terrorists.
"I guess you really don't care about- Ahhh!" replied Bell who had been interrupted by a blade driving out through the front of his chest.
"I played the lead opposite of Elizabeth in the school production of Romeo and Juliet a few months after Caitlin was born. If anybody can play dead it's me." said Peter smiling as he drove the handle of his katana right against the back of Bell.
"He did it." observed Jean feeling oddly happy Peter had avenged the death of his loved ones.
"This isn't revenge, this is justice. I'll see you in Hell." whispered Peter before pulling the sword out of Bell's chest causing an eruption of blood to come from the gaping hole in Bell's chest the old man fell backwards onto the floor. After a minute Priscilla went over to Bell to check for a pulse.
"He's dead." confirmed the brunette which caused Peter to burst out laughing as he dropped his sword and he fell backwards onto the floor.
"I did it. I actually did it. I killed Bell. I finally killed the bastard. Over a decade of waiting and I've done it." said Peter as he lay on the ballroom floor with tears building in his eyes as a large pool of blood began to surround him.
"Don't move or you'll lose more blood." said Jean not wanting Peter to die before they can turn him in, "We'll get you immediate medical attention at the Agency."
"You only want to patch me up so you can turn me over to Interpol." said Peter starting to get weaker as he lost more and more blood.
"That's not true. We want to make sure you're okay." lied Jean.
"Don't give me that bollocks. I know you wanted to turn me in from the beginning like I know that meeting at the reserve was a set up from the start. You can't fool me." replied Peter.
"Thank you for saving Henrietta." said Jose holding the girl in his arms.
"It was no problem. I told you I have a weakness for little kids. Being a father does that to you." replied Peter.
"I never thought I'd say this but since you saved Henrietta I guess I can forgive you for Milan." said Triela swallowing her pride.
"I never took it personal." said Peter.
"We can get you treatment at the Agency." said Hilshire.
"Since you did risk your life for Henrietta maybe we could look past your own past indiscretions." added Priscilla who couldn't be mad at somebody who risked their own for the girls.
"I don't want to live." replied Peter calmly.
"Why?" asked Rico.
"I've had a screwed up life and frankly I've wanted to end my life for a while. I've said I was suicidal and the only thing I wanted to do was kill Bell. It was my passion, my reason for waking up in the morning. Now that I've done that I have no reason to keep going nor do I want to. There's nothing left on this planet for me and I don't want to be here anymore. I've never been religious but if there is an afterlife my mother, father, Elizabeth, her parents and Caitlin are waiting for me. I'd rather be with them on alone here." answered Peter calmly.
"That's really deep." observed Olga.
"The only thing that could have made my battle with Bell any better is if the room had been on fire." laughed Peter before closing his eyes, "Elizabeth, my love, I'm coming to be with you again."
"Is he dead?" asked Henrietta as Peter lay lifeless on the floor.
"Yes." answered Priscilla finding no pulse.
"What do we do now?" asked Jose.
"I have an idea." answered Jean, "But we'll need gasoline."
It was a bright and sunny day in Rome and things at the Agency were truly quiet for the first time since Peter had arrived in the country. Outside the Infirmary a blonde girl with a bob cut was singing to herself while sitting on a chair and kicking her legs.
"Hey Rico." said Triela and she Claes and Angelica joined their comrade, "You waiting for Henrietta?"
"Yup." answered Rico smiling, "I haven't seen her at all for the last two days."
"Well she was badly hurt. It only makes sense she needs time to recover." said Claes who has seen Henrietta along with Angelica when the everybody returned from their mission.
"It's a good thing Dr. Bianchi is such a good doctor." added Angelica smiling as the doors to the infirmary opened and Henrietta emerged fully recovered from Bell's shooting.
"Hello." said the brunette smiling as she saw her friends waiting to greet her.
"How are you feeling?" asked Claes as Rico and Angelica happily embraced their friend.
"I'm fine. It hurt a lot after I was shot but it wasn't the first time and I've gotten used to the pain." answered Henrietta like it was nothing.
"Well we're going to be late to class if we don't hurry." said Triela before adding with a mischievous smile, "The only good thing is Hilshire is teaching so if you missed any sleep you can catch up on it now."
The girls took off to the room where the classes were held smiling and carefree for the time being. As they passed an office they saw a television on the local news.
("Now back to our breaking story: It has been confirmed by the Minister of Defense that the infamous Ace of Spades was killed during a government raid. For more we turn to Mario is on seen.") said the male reporter.
("Thank you. This is truly shocking news and as you imagine it's been the top story all over Europe today. We have not been told much but as you stated the Ace of Spades was killed during this raid on a mansion outside of Rome during a raid two days ago that was complicated when the Republican Faction terrorists inside set the mansion on fire to try and drive back the government forces in a desperation measure that ultimately failed. From what we have been told it seems he was fighting Robert Bell who was a crime boss wanted in the United Kingdom and whose body was recovered. It seems the Padania were members of the Milan branch of the organization whose loyalty was apparently bought off by Bell. Because of this it seems the groups leader, Cristiano Savonarola, hired the Ace of Spades to kill Bell in revenge and the two ended up killing each other." Cristiano was not present at the mansion himself.) said Mario who was giving his report outside the Ministry of Defense building.
("What about a body?") asked the reported in the studio.
("While Bell's body was recovered the Ace of Spades was too badly burned by the fire that set by the desperate terrorists and reduced the mansion to ashes. Because of this, forensics has identified him though no identity has been given. He was very elusive so it's no wonder why no records of him exist and that's why it tool so long to confirm this. He was identified through fingerprints that matched one on the playing card the Ace of Spades had left after the train station bombing he committed.") answered Mario.
("Interpol had an open case on him. Do you know anything about that?") asked the reporter in the studio.
("The government gave this information to Interpol first and in light of it they have posthumously convicted the Ace of Spades for his crimes and closed the decade long case on him. His reign of terror is finally over.") answered Mario.
"Jean can really whip up a good story." laughed Alfonso as the agents watched the TV.
"That and the media is controlled by the government." added Olga.
In Milan, both Cristiano and Pinocchio were watching the same newscast as the others at the Agency.
"They're telling blatant lies." said Pinocchio upset by how his uncle was being portrayed.
"It's fine Pinocchio. " replied Cristiano, "We're always made out to be villains so we have to get used to it. I'm just glad Bell got what he deserved."
In their apartment, Francesca Verchetti and Joey Mortella had just watched the news report as well.
"I knew it. That last meeting we had after Peter killed Rosano, he acted so differently I knew Peter expected to die and I prepared myself but that doesn't make it any easier." said Francesca breaking down toward the end of her statement.
"He was a good guy and he lived for his revenge. If what you're saying is true then he probably didn't want to live anymore." replied Joey, "Though he was a great guy."
"I know and he really was." said Francesca, "At least he's in a better place."
In his living room Jean Croce had just finished watching the newscast himself and just shut off the TV. After the whole incident with Peter he decided to use some of the off days that had piled up. After shutting the TV off he lit up a cigarette then stared up at the ceiling.
"Peter got justice for his love and family. I swear that I'll do the same Sophia." said the blonde man.
In Ashford, England a new grave had just been filled with a tombstone that simply read Peter Langsford. While most people wouldn't recognize the name nor the body inside, which was not burned and only covered in the wounds Peter got fighting Bell, it was better this way since people would desecrate his grave if they knew the truth. Some people would want their fame know to the entire world so everybody would know who they were but Peter was buried around his parents, the Meadows, Elizabeth and Caitlin. That was all he ever needed.
A/N: So there ends "Wild Card" and again I want to personally thank everybody who read my work and reviewed because you're why I do this. As promised I have another Gunslinger Girl fanfic which I'm currently working on and that'll be out in two weeks. It's called "GSG: The Twilight Zone" and it fuses Gunslinger Girl with the classic anthology by Rod Sterling sometimes by based on Twilight Zone episodes or my own original plots. I'm not sure if I'm going to list it as a regular story or a crossover yet so look for it in both the regular GSG stories and the crossover section under Twilight Zone because it'll be there. I hope you all take the time to check that out and for now please review and again thanks for reading.