It's been ages. I returned to fix up a few typos and hopefully manage to tack on chapter 12 for the reviewers who wanted it. I'm sorry for the long wait, but it appears I may not be able to complete this project. However, I encourage readers to go through this and see if it's worth reviving. I would greatly appreciate any reviews, it may help me get my writing muse back! :D


*after checking like...ten pages of info on TT, the location of Resurgam is said to be Maine*

So, I'll just warn you beforehand that any reference to Maryland was intended to be corrected to Maine (ex: Maryland Medical would be Maine Medical) The state confusion does affect the plotline a tiny bit, but ...I'll handle that over here ^^;


A/N Whoo hoo! I didn't think I could start writing a new story so fast! I guess with each school year I write a long fic as my assignment...XD

Anyways, I had a blast in the beginning with the clean slate of vocab... (but I ran into a bunch of trouble in the end...oh well.) Hope you like it!

My old OC and I will be waiting at the bottom...so tread carefully.

Characters belong to ATLUS. The ones you don't recognize are mine.


Narrow alleys shrouded in darkness and broken roads sided with dim orange lights were what stretched across downtown Portland, Maine at nighttime. Nothing welcomed you here except the deathly silence and buzzing of the rusty old lamps on the sidewalk. If you were lucky, maybe one of the homeless would be passing by from around the corner with a cart-load of garbage and a song to hum. But his pitiful appearance meant nothing to them. This point in the day, the opposite of rush hour, there were two types of blockage in the streets in their eyes:

The first and most common are the rows of cars and motorcycles lined up near bars for the late-to-party adults and drunks of the area. Loud and festive, they were what created the irritating flat-pitched singing and banshee-like screeches at dark that would wake any poor souls resting in the crumbling apartments nearby. Since those noisemakers tend to stay indoors, they weren't a problem for those people.

The other obstacle was no other than the nefarious mafia, unrefined gangs, and sly thugs of the dormant city. A damsel unfortunate enough to be wandering the forbidding back streets could be kidnapped without much of a shriek, made into a miserable slut after being robbed, or simply killed at the spot and be made a meal for whatever critters that roam out there. The thought was unpleasant in the least, so loitering with a pocketful of cash would be a...bad idea.

Those sinister rats and monsters of men who dwell here were the only thing that posed a threat, but if you were part of them, then you should know how to evade those punks without a hitch. Sometimes.

Being a completely different organization cut off from the usual corrupt gangdom, they don't spend much of their lives in this infested district. Actually, avoiding to step a foot in this hostile neighborhood was what they would prefer.

"You didn't have to run. The guards and police had given up an hour ago." A mischievous, female voice whispered to a gasping young man who had just arrived from the back door of a restaurant to rendezvous. The two hid under the protection of the shadows of a deserted corridor.

The male had yet to catch his breath as he said back in the same volume, "This place gives me the creeps. Why did you tell him to meet somewhere else?" He was bent over and was sweating like a dog, at the same moment trying to keep his panting to a minimum.

Not at all disgusted by his status, she stood without sympathy and asked coldly, "Do you have it?" The complaint went with no comment and previous question she felt could be answered with logic- no, she saw it as another complaint. They were one of them; lamenting about their jobs was not tolerated, for the pay was well worth beyond the risk.

"You really need to ask, huh? I came all the way here and that's the only thing you-"

"Do you have it or not?" The icy hiss couldn't be any more brutal to the ears of the exhausted man. There was no response for a few minutes from him and she assumed aloud, "So you have failed the mission?" Her tone made herself seem superior compared to the other, who finally had the strength to stand straight to face her frozen composure.

The man chortled to the tense air emanating just from her angered presence. "Of course not." He could never go back to them after screwing up a mission; that would totally ruin his reputation. Maybe even his- Nevermind. It's not that he did mess up and drop it. "Seriously. I. Didn't. Fail. Period." But the silent treatment he was getting wasn't making things any better.

After the pressure was lifted with the woman's naughty smirk, she praised, "I didn't know what I would have done if you did. Good work." Her footsteps were unheard as she led the man further down the passageway, which was entirely engulfed in the black reaches of the starless night. They left no traces, no evidence of their meeting and naturally, no witnesses...as their rules applied.

"I heard that you took custody of the child next-door." A tall African-American male said from his neatly arranged desk with his hands folded firmly at his lap, facing the glass windows to his left side. He was kindly addressing the silver-haired woman wearing a formal suit and tie seated in the one of the two modern styled chairs placed in front of his kept workspace.

The man pushed up his glasses and apologized when he knew she wouldn't reply, "I'm sorry. The news and rumors going around don't reach here as fast as they used to. I believe you and Alyssa-" Just as he could offer his regards the adopted girl, he was interrupted by the impatient visitor.

"Just give it to me straight, Chief." The medical examiner had crossed her legs as she watched the him fix his crinkled trench coat from sitting for so long and lower the collar of his sweater underneath. "What do you need to tell me?" Her pale azure eyes were glaring at the bronze nameplate located atop his desk before shifting her gaze upwards.

The plate read 'David Wayne' in white on the first line and 'Cumberland Institute of Forensic Medicine' in bold umber with a emblem crested beside it. Despite the professional look of it, the woman knew her boss was an easily concerned individual, normally worried about the health and personal matters of each staff member in the building. She couldn't pinpoint the exact nature of him, but she was content with having a protective manager- a private conversation about Alyssa, however, was uncalled for.

As David slowly directed himself to face her, he said gently, "I know you have just came out of a hospital, Naomi. Are you sure about getting back to work at this time?" He saw the forensic expert cross her arms and lean back a little, displaying her answer in a convinced manner. "Alright then." Was his response. He casually slid over a few manilla folders from his left of his desk to the center.

They only met between her assigned autopsies to discuss the next case to crack, and this was similar to one of those occasions. To be frank, they could hold these sort of discussions anywhere: the nearest cafe, in the halls of the institute, even online. But the reason they have gathered so clandestinely in his office away from everyone else was for a specifically... different circumstance.

Naomi Kimishima couldn't be more aware of the obvious. She took note that the Chief had more documents than the usual three and out of curiosity questioned, "Is there something special about this case?" The Raging Bomber mystery was dangerous enough; if this was another high-profile murder case, she would have to decline.

"I'm giving you a choice." Chief Wayne's deep voice was a bit unsettled, which was typical to her ears. "There is one that...is confidential to the public and minor authorities, only the FBI and I know about it." His face was more precarious as he continued giving details, "I don't know why they would pass this to you with no corpse to examine; this should be for a detective. But the reward is quite generous. A man would kill for this much money, so please consider that-"

"I think I'll take the other one." Dr. Kimishima said nonchalantly as she got up from the seat, her ponytail and necklace affected by the abrupt movement. She extended her arm out for the documents as she reasoned briefly, "I'm not putting myself or the girl in jeopardy just because of a heavy paycheck."

Even with no chance to give details about the second autopsy, David nodded in agreement to her decision when he pushed the other set of papers forward. "I can't argue." But before dismissing her, he warned, "Please don't stress your recovery. If for any reason you can't continue-"

"Don't go worrying about me, I'll be fine." Naomi's reassuring statement quieted him within less than a second. She held the victim's profile and description in one hand and used the other to prop open the door. "If there's anything else you have to say to me, contact my agent. I'm heading to my office to sort this out."

The man waved goodbye and gave a weak smile as semi-transparent door closed behind her. He sighed in a relieved way when he knew the old, slightly stubborn Dr. Kimishima was back. "Confident as always...Now, these need to go back-" The other files still on his desk were stuffed back into the same drawer and soon gone from the Chief's mind.

He spun his chair to the side once more. The view was grand, considering that the office was on the highest floor: clear blue skies with patches of clouds scattered about and the lively city growing below it. "This summer was an unforgettable one..."

The Rosalia epidemic had been put to an end a week ago, and life was put back on the right tracks as it should have been. Its wheels have begun to turn again...

And he was back inside what one doctor has called the 'icebox.' The prison where he had already spent eight years of his life in and perhaps two hundred more...if not for these words spoken by the man in charge of his containment, Ian Holden:

'You better be ready for surgery next week.'

After what had happened in the past month, he was trusted enough to be given the opportunity to operate. The regulations were very easy to understand. He had one whole year, starting from today, to save as many lives as he could in the OR. Each procedure would deduct two years from his sentence, which currently stood at approximately 230 years.

He had 365 days to save about 115 lives. That would means one operation every... Forget the math. All there was to know was that the ratio was respectable and gave him plenty of time to redeem himself from the crime he was blamed of.

The prisoner stood up with a torn cloak over his uniform when he heard sounds of footsteps and commands on the other side of the heavy gate. There was also a few more conditions, but he let Ian, who wore the same tan coat and shades, remind him of them, "CR-SO1, your year of service begins now. You realize that you are to stay at Resurgam for that duration and that you leaving it would terminate the deal...right?"

The black haired man closed his emotionless, crimson eyes for a few seconds to adjust to the light piercing through the stale air to the the bleak walls of the cell. "Yes." He reopened his eyes to see Ian holding a strange metallic bracelet; it was the radar they were to put on him so they would know if he ever walked beyond the grounds of the hospital.

"This will start flashing if you wander too far. Solid means that you broke the contract and we'll be after you." The man informed with a voice that made him sound unfriendly to the prisoner, but his true intentions could be seen when he advised, "You are free to roam the premises and make a couple of friends, so take advantage of that."

Ian slipped the device back into his pockets for later and noted, "This is all you get to reduce your time here. I wouldn't blow it." It wasn't until the surgeon nodded back and took off the frayed garment before he was escorted out of the chilly compartment and into the unblemished, white halls of the prison complex with two stern guards securing the path behind him.

They reached an exit leading to the armed vehicle meant to transport convicts. The detective ordered the guards to see the young man to the truck, which would be the last chamber he would be kept in...the final one kept at zero degrees Celsius, that was.

As he lowered his head to enter, he saw a spotless lab coat waiting for him at the bench in the back. It seemed to be the same one that he wore a week ago. It replaced the ragged cloak that the prisoner left behind in the old cell as he effortlessly threw it over his back; since he was still in cuffs, he couldn't wear it properly. After taking a seat on the hard bench, he heard voices speaking beyond the door that had yet to be locked up.

"There's a traffic jam?" That austere, demanding voice had to be Holden's.

"I heard an orphanage and a few homes next to it caught on fire, they had to reduce the lanes on the highways for the firetrucks and the EMTs." That unfamiliar male voice may belong to either the driver or one of the guards. It definitely sounded nervous. "We might not get there until late noon." The soundproofed door muted out any more of the talking from the surgeon's ears.

"An orphanage...on fire...?" CR-SO1 murmured softly to himself, recalling an acquaintance of his at Resurgam First Care mentioning those words during the outbreak. She was a paramedic there...yes, her name was...

Maria Torres was accustomed to loving the thrill of high-speed driving. But there were a couple of factors that limited her bliss right now. One was that she wasn't on her favored aerodynamic motorbike with the wind running through her short, brown hair. No, she was forced to drive in a buff, hunk of metal called an ambulance. Though in this urgent situation, she couldn't make a dispute of it.

She was in emergency mode right now. And to make things worse, it was a freaking orphanage burning down. Just like the one she was in at fourteen when she wasn't careful with lighting up a cigarette.

And indeed it was. The blazing structure was almost identical the house she had set fire to. As much as she hated to admit it, she was one of the last to arrive even though Resurgam was the closest hospital. Damn the dead cellphone and missed call. "Ugh, screw my timing..."

The hasty paramedic leaped out her vehicle with a first-aid kit to join the others in treatment and transportation of the kids being carried out by firefighters. The building was already falling into shambles, and the number of children being rescued was declining with it.

Dr. Torres found herself treating the minor injuries of a jet-black, spiky haired Caucasian teen who appeared the oldest out of all the orphans. She assumed the person was male from being able to tolerate the wounds without a care in the world as he was looking about, checking something. "Hold still, you got a burn on your arm-" It wasn't as severe as she expected, only being a second-degree burn that only needed a little antibiotic gel and bandaging. Once taken care of, she stood up and asked the nearest firemen, "Hey, are all the kids out of there?" The smell of smoke was suffocating at this close range.

One of them replied, "We're not sure, they're still counting. At least the families living next to this have already evacuated..." He had a hose aimed at the flames, ready to spray the fire with the appropriate signal. "But even if there's still some left in there, the exit is almost totally blocked. They won't make it." The words were cruel, but it was reality.

"Dammit..." Maria cursed as she saw the last firefighter come out unsuccessful with no survivor in his arms salvaged. She turned back to speak to the teenager she just aided but discovered no one was there. "Where did-" She immediately spun back around to see the juvenile dashing towards the entrance. "Hey-! Get back here! Where do you think you're..." She tried to make chase as the other adults nearby made pursuit of her, but he was already inside.

As the fireman have said, the front beams collapsed and entering was now impossible. The paramedic in charge of the kid was the closest to the fallen, burning debris, with her gloved hands covering her nose and mouth from inhaling the fumes. She was pulled back by a few firemen, hearing a nurse and co-worker Darnell Sellers call her name.

"Let me go!" The woman shouted as she struggled to release herself from the grasp of the others. "A kid just ran in there, you have to get him out!" Her yell barely made it out of her mouth as she choked on the flying ashes. When she was released after being taken back fives meters or so, she pointed to the combustion and screamed as hard as she could with her dried throat, "There's still someone...You can't-" Her voice had diminished consequently and someone had cut in.

"Calm down, Dr. Torres-" The male nurse wearing a blue shirt said while keeping his distance from the enraged Maria, whose vivid orange and lush green jacket was charred somewhat from the airborne exhaust. Darnell did want to console her, but all he could stutter out was: "We already lost three from fatal burns and... Y-you can't save him now. "

The olive-colored eyes of the aroused paramedic had a glow from the scorching fires in front of her. She couldn't believe it. She had just let a child sprint into his certain death. Her legs faltered and she sunk down to her knees, now all she could do was fight her own tears. This was the kind of disaster that shouldn't get worse with her experience.

Back then she could save one girl, now...with all of med school, she couldn't save anyone. "How could I let this happen?" Her fist was slammed onto the concrete ground, the physical pain unnoticed.

Behind Maria stood most of the other distressed members of the Resurgam first response team and some unharmed but frightened children soon to be taken to the hospital to stay at. The director of the asylum was next to them, taking roll. She was wearing a faded autumn-patterned dress that had burnt edges, and was...round near the waist. Her medium cherry-brown hair was tangled and her skin matched Chief Patel's; there was a possibility that they were related, as they both wore fancy jewelry and makeup.

This lady was the only one to equal Maria's panic, as three already uncovered perished and she had figured out who was not present using the numbers. "Where's Gary? And what happened to...Oh god, they're..." When she was about to go on with the meaningless rambling, the deafening cry of shattered glass echoed past the assemblage of medical professionals and rescuers.

All attention was put to the source of the disturbance: the busted window on far right of the second level of the deteriorating structure. Behind it was...

"Hey, it's..." "Someone help them!" The parentless youngsters gasped along with their stunned coordinator while workers scurried about searching for a method to deliver both the bruised teen and the unconscious boy he was struggling to hold up back down to dry land. The newly found child was bleeding from his forehead; his dirty brown hair was shorter than the black one of his savior.

Dr. Torres instinctively went forward and hollered, "Just hang in there-!" She was positive the firefighters had a trampoline that was perfect for this type of predicament. But at the same moment, half of the smoldering roof behind the trapped kid crashed; a torched beam that once supported it struck the his defenseless back. He only flinched and clenched his teeth at the impact as outsiders watched in horror, the beam maiming him from escape.

There was no time for the jump. The only chance he could make it out was if there was a way to have the child in his hold removed. Maria couldn't bear the last resort of forsaking the boy after the daring effort, but there was one more option she had reserved to confront the ultimate peril. "Throw him down! I'll catch him!" Exclamations were made behind her as she implored, "Hurry!"

The teenager, whose brilliant scarlet eyes showed reluctance even in his current position, tilted his head just by fraction of a degree. The paramedic below took the gesture as a nod and hurled away her jacket for the catch. The hero mustered the power to heave the child outwards; leaving the rest to gravity.

With her sharp eyes dead set on the falling boy, the woman made a field goal stance. "I got ya..!" In a heartbeat, she snatched him just before any deadly contact to the seared grass and crushed pottery. "Someone take him!" A moved fireman close by sprinted to her side to free her of the child knocked out from breathing some of the toxic smoke.

But when it was the next one's turn to break loose from the destroyed orphanage, he had already planned ahead. He was crouched on the ledge without strain, determined to find another object to rely on. Maria detected that and said, "Hold on, you aren't gonna..." His age and weight hadn't caused the doctor to think twice, but it was unmistakable that it had stirred his judgment of what to do.

There was a towering oak tree about two meters from where the window was. It wasn't dominated by fire like the building, and could be the only hope of the desperate soul. Dr. Torres let out a heavy breath- there wasn't a minute to spare negotiating. She relocated herself in front of the most convenient branch and encouraged as he gauged the length, "Give it your best shot... I'm here if you don't make it!"

The riot of crackling and booming noises being emitted from the edifice breaking apart slowed down as everyone paused to witness this one instant. It was all or nothing as the teen sprung out, just as the last of the room tipped and came to a violent descent.

The picture was blurry. If there had to be a one-word description for the image, then that was it. It's a blur. The image was just a canvas of dull, splotchy colors; you couldn't squint to make out the walls of the painting, if there were any. Yellow was the most solid part of the discoloration you saw, and everything else was just a smudge of brown or gray.

Just where was this? If your life was on the line for this knowledge, then you would have guessed that this was outside...and somewhere urban at dusk.

"Crap. They're onto us." The unrecognized male voice was kinda muffled out. You perceived the danger, but you had not a clue of what your business with this do-or-die dilemma was. You just...hightailed.

The figure you were tagging along with groaned, "I can't believe they found us..." Frustrated, yes. Explainable, no. "Someone must have snitched!" You had a compelling feeling to tell this guy something, but just as you were going to, there was a flash that blinded you as the setting was altered.

Another vague...surrounding. At least the background was detailed- it was a no-brainer:

Everything was black. It was just...a vacant room with one faint light-bulb above you. Ghastly. "Just accept the fact you're a gentleman. Getting stuck with other people's problems is your fate." Again, voice didn't ring a bell. It was as if the woman had given the simple truth to you straight.

When the statement was done, the flash happened again.

He was up. The tall man with burly dark-green hair in a lab coat...there, napping on the couch.

The adult stuck a cigarette into his mouth, stretching his arms leisurely and yawning in advance. He disregarded the cluttered room he had rested in for his lunch break and sat up on the comfy sofa.

The place was a wreck. A low table stacked with garbage was in front of him was already put to labor for holding the extra weight of the assortment of smokes. His unsightly desk filled with endless files and a drained mug of coffee was somehow paired with a top-notch office chair. Behind him were several shelves of clobbered books and magazines topped with unused medical paraphernalia. Oh, there was the fridge, too; stocked with cola and snacks that added to the trash pile when finished.

This was his peaceful domain. Everything was perfect as before...except that thing. That. To the left of his desk. The blue monitor with the elephant ears.

That was the fantastic bucket of bolts he was presented with by his dear Esha Patel a month prior to the plague- the disease he had diagnosed along with the piece of work that could have wiped America off the surface of the earth. That was his faithful computer: Rapid Organization Networked Intelligence.

"Dr. Cunningham, there seems to be an odd accumulation of humans at the lobby." That was its monotone, robotic, and everything irritating...voice. As he couldn't hear enough of the assistant.

The doctor lazily rose up from his lounging spot. "RONI, it's called a crowd." He bent back down to pick up the stethoscope hung on the edge of the couch and swung it around the back of his neck into position. He swiped the coffee container from the littered desk and turned the knob on the door to his left. "You weren't like the other models...I'm off duty, need I remind you." He grumbled before going into the maze of neat corridors that connected all of Resurgam.

When the office door was shut, the glossy name tag imprinted with 'Dr. Gabriel Cunningham' was shone on once again by the ceiling lights. It was refinished and set back there when the diagnostician returned after his one exciting week of retirement. He acknowledged that no matter where he went, trouble always followed. He couldn't deny that he was giving up on the promising life he could afford with his savings, he just...didn't know what goes next.

First destination: the staff lounge. Not much doubt put in that. And maybe he could sneak a peek at what was going on in the lobby. If it was a party or anything of the sort, he'd gladly refuse.

But It turned out that he came upon the second stop first. Why? Because...

"Gabe! Over here, now!" The Chief had a knack for dragging him into her work issues, shift or no shift, he wasn't discriminated from it. She was hiding behind the corner where the stairs leading down to the main lobby were. "We got a sticky situation down there!" The boss' discomposed murmuring caused the man to wrinkle his eyebrows.

"'We?'" He snickered just as someone below bellowed.

"Esha Katherine Patel! You come down right now and show some responsibility!" There were thunderous tapping noises after the order. "Don't start messing with me!"

The lady being referred to cringed as Gabriel was temporarily speechless. One person had just defied the Esha's control of the establishment...and whoever it was wasn't happy. There were others that spoke from the floor under them, "Please calm down..." The forgiving and hardly accented voice had to be Tomoe's. "Chief! What's taking you so long?" Spirited shouting and a tough tone were Maria's specialty. More mumbling was noted as the disoriented pair above stared at each other.

"What in the world is going on here..?" That was what Dr. Cunningham wanted to ask. He glimpsed at the entrance of the hospital to seethe shady Detective Holden, who just tried to interrogate, with the specialist next to him. But that wasn't all the view had to offer.

CR-SO1 found himself stranded in a sea of children. Most of them had cuts and burns treated and reinforced with medical patches and dressing; they were all glaring at him and Ian on their unprecedented entrance. He wanted to ask the meaning of this, but easily assumed that these were the kids from the orphanage he overheard about.

His cuffs were taken away and updated with the brace Ian explained beforehand moments ago. The red light was signaling at an once-in-a-while pace, as he was standing not too far from the perimeter of the facility- which must have had a new wing constructed due to it looking larger from before the pandemic.

"Oh hey, he's back..!" Dr. Torres announced; she was accompanied by Dr. Tachibana, some nurses, and an unknown woman. The paramedic's proud jacket was darkened, and she had a splinter or two on her legs. Her joy had evaporated when she glowered at the sullen official beside him. "Oh." Being in charge with the Chief absent, it was now her duty to...handle the mob. "Could you...give all of us a moment?" She didn't need the help of the agent's alarming presence to disperse it.

The man slid his hands into the pockets of his coat and backed up as he said coolly, "I was going to leave anyway. Good luck with your daycare." No one bothered saying goodbye with his difficult attitude. Ian walked out smoothly, deserting the other man among the herd of toddlers and minors.

"Doctor...I think it was would be wise to..." The purple-eyes of the Japanese woman next to the headstrong Maria Torres conveyed anxiety as she attempted to inform the prisoner of something.

The tallest two of the horde obstructing his path was a tan-haired boy with the same color eyes who only reached the surgeon's waist; he wore a stained white T-shirt and burnt umber shorts with plain sandals. There was evident bandaging around his head that was terribly applied, seeing that it was undoing itself gradually.

This other adolescent wore a dusty, collared top lacking color that had short sleeves and two upper pockets held by buttons; two more buttons were sewn in the center to keep the v-arch from being too wide. A silver chain plate necklace dangled around the neck and was the only visible accessory. Another distinct chain medium-sized hung out at his left for a couple of inches past the edges of the shirt; blackened shale was the color of his pants that it adorned. There were wrappings that still held onto his left arm.

So this person, the real ringleader of the stand-off, turned out have an appearance much like the convict's with the shared ruby eyes, disorganized onyx-black hair, and a thin build. But there were some variances: The eyes of this kid were lit up with some amusement, if the subtle smirk didn't display his unpredictability already. And he was about the same height as the endoscopic surgeon trying to caution-

Wait. What was the risk of standing here? Embarrassed expressions were on the faces of the staff while fear and intimidation could be read on those of the juvenile survivors. CR-SO1, who stopped observing the two next to him, stammered out in the hushed lobby, "Why are we all..."

Maria tipped her head to her left just a centimeter; she bit her lip and widened her asserted eyes at him concisely to persuade him to move. The man was about to heed to her instruction before he felt his legs bound by arms. "Hey-" It wasn't until he glanced down to see four of the small fry latching onto him with terrified looks. "What are you trying to..." He stepped back to liberate himself, but had his shoulder gripped by a hand.

Now it was the leader who was the one pinning him from leaving- the quick but powerful hand didn't quite fit the contrite face of its owner when he got pushed down. "Nngh!" The force exerted was much; it plus the fact his posture was unbalanced resulted him in tumbling down onto his side.

Tomoe had her hands over her mouth from the astonishing turn of events. Maria growled out a more aggressive reaction, "Are you out of your mind? That's a doctor you just shoved over!" She did want to get between them to stop this, but the person she just barked at was the brave hero from today's tragedy, with the boy next to him the one he saved. The kid wasn't muscular, but he was clever: He pulled off the stunt back at the fire by gaining momentum. To be more precise, he...jumped for her and used her shoulders to push himself up to the branch. Though she was angry he didn't give the heads-up about using her as a spring, what he did was literally a miracle.

And she would hate to spoil the glory now. As she reviewed the details of the dramatic escape, the renown teenager yanked on the neck of the 'hostage's' uniform.

"Erhard Muller!"

The roar came from the woman who ran the orphanage now too damaged for redemption. Her clothes and hair were unchanged as the children's, but her docile personality was nowhere to be found, as her fury surfaced to discipline the kids.

But for the paramedic, whose volume was outdone by the coordinator's, had a gut feeling that she was holding back. Which could only mean that the roughhousing didn't occur on a day-to-day basis.

Everyone that heard her was either petrified or... well, most were already petrified and about to topple over, with hardly any exceptions. The teen being named released the surgeon in the following seconds, his confidence unshaken.

But the captive still bordered with children was dismayed. "That's..." The word didn't get picked up by anyone except himself. He was taken of his freedom and memories by his late father, now it was his identity being stolen by a stranger.

'Erhard Muller' was his name.

Ending Note (Read at your own risk...I suppose):

Yep... there's so much buildup for plot, right (-_-)? Don't freak out, the next chappies aren't going to be like this headache, with only a few focused characters... This was the prologue, and the beginning so...it'll come together, just you wait...

Alicia: You're quick to forget me.

Uh... Well... *ignoring* Anyways...I'm gonna try to be IC as possible, but knowing that I have OCs and whatnot, it's not gonna be easy... And each chapter I'm aiming for 5000-7000 words with thicker paragraphs rather than the old format. If you don't like the way I wrote this...I'll go back to my old ways.

Alicia: *sighs* I know you felt bad about the story you wrote on me. Let's leave that talk for another time. I, being the representative of you, personally think that this fic right here was too much effort and showing signs of struggle against repetition (after taking hours to type up the last page). I also know the plot that you didn't find a conclusion to yet. Are you sure you can do this without...hurting yourself?

I won't...die or anything... I have about 10 more chapters sorta planned out. In this one, my reference was only 5 bullets! Ahem, anyways, I'm sure you saw the genres: action and romance. Here's the bottom line: It's not really gonna be like that. I wanted to add in mystery and drama as Retribution had, but I thought the other two were more of a warning of what's coming next:

Yes, I'm pitting an OC with one of the TT characters (maybe two, but I don't think so.) It's not going to be an easy OOC, love-at-first-sight pairing. And there will be a bit of violence, but it's not coming right now! It's gonna be near... *counts* 8-9 chapters from this! Hey, Alicia, guess what's gonna happen between that? =3

Alicia: *rolls eyes* I am...you. If you're asking me for a prediction, leave it to the reviewers. I can only say that the following updates might contain fluff and a few obvious shockers. Oh, and your failure to keep coming up with the new vocabulary will be starting in the next sentence you write. It's not that you can 'reset' with every chapter. :p

I know! I need someone kind enough to BR my work so I won't humiliate myself! I need to prove that I'm a 9th grader! '^' So at least leave a decent review, whatever it is, heavy-criticism, motivation (please~), saying you read it, etc.

Alicia: Looks like we covered everything here. *leaves shift*

W-what? This isn't a job (though you are required to report about what I'm feeling on each chapter)! Aargh, leave her be. I have something else to say...

Alicia: Hold it. I have a hint to give to our big audience. Here you go: Haruhi Suzumiya. *really leaves this time*

Huh? You mean the manga and anime series? What's that got to do with...*thinks a bit* Eh, I guess it kinda makes sense. So, I was going to add on a seriously random fact to end this note. Here goes... Okay, as I was writing the last part, I was called out to take phone orders for a carry-out restaurant. It was horrible. I don't want to do it ever again. I only wrote XD (side order of duck) once and XP (pork) twice on a check. There...I said it. Well, this is the longest A/N I'll ever do, and if you read it, I commend you! *hugs*