Corruption

Chapter 1

Going Viral

A Hyperdimension Neptunia Story


... I'm doing this. After playing Hyperdimension Neptunia, and reading the very few stories here on the site, I've gotten the inspiration to do this. And I'm doing it.

Here's the base summary that I couldn't fit on the webpage summary:

The base function of a virus is to corrupt the CPU, to impede it's functioning, or outright destroy it.

A very unlucky Basilicom monster hunter died on a job in Planeptune. That wasn't exactly so. The more sentiment sort of monsters brought his body to Arfoire, and she proceeded with her new plan against her foes. The construction of a Virus CPU. She outfitted his body with weapons, knowledge and data.

She designed him to be a killing machine, a weapon for her use. She created a mental link to control her new puppet, and set him to use. First, plague a few towns. Next, train and prepare for battle. Finally, get revenge. To destroy the Goddesses.

During the second phase of her orders, Histoire became aware of his existence, and enacted a counter plan. Establishing her own mental link to the man-turned-weapon, she inserted a new CPU she designed, an Anti-Virus CPU. This consciousness was young, and completely independent with a will of his own, and different in most aspects from the consciousness of Basilicom hunter that died. He was intelligent, yes, as he knew something was wrong when Arfoire began sending him orders again.

He was afraid, alone in a world he didn't know his place in. He was a consciousness made to be innocent, but fierce and ruthless when necessary. He knew that he lived in someone else's body. He earned the memories of what the Virus had done.

He felt ashamed, responsible for it's actions. Yet he was still forced to comply to Arfoire's orders. Knowing her counter plan had failed, Histoire initiated another one. The Anti-Virus CPU, named The Weapon by Arfoire and Rouge by Histoire, became the object of a vicious game of tug-of-war. After a few years of existence, the mental and physical strain became unbearable.

He had two possible choices. Stay alive and attempt to fight off Arfoire's will and control with Histoire's help, or simply die and make Arfoire lose a valuable weapon and asset. He chose death. No matter how much Histoire tried to convince him that it wasn't his last option, but after a failed lapse of her help against Arfoire, he had ravaged a town on Leanbox, leaving few survivors.

He would rather die. He pulled a knife from a sheath during a heavy mental battle between Arfoire and Histoire, and plunged it into his chest. He lay dying on the ground, in the forest of Leanbox. It would all be over soon, he told himself.

That wouldn't be the case. Because he just coincidentally crossed the path that a certain Goddess named Green Heart took for a nature walk at least once a week. And she refused to let him die.

So… Now, you know the base plot introduction, let's get started! Though maybe I should have edited it... The story starts off from the beginning of the story summary... Aw well, screw it. What's done is done.

So...

LET'S DO THIS!


Reynald was not having a good day. He knew he shouldn't have gone to Planeptune for this job. As a Basilicom agent that was born on Lastation, he should have stayed there for a living. But no, he had to go to Planeptune for the "opportunities".

And now, he was here, in an abandoned laboratory of a dungeon, about to get himself killed in a futile attempt at earning credits. About a few dozen monsters surrounded him; he was on his last leg, out of healing related items, backed into a corner, with a gun in one hand, a faithful red and black bladed katana in the other.

"Damn it." He swore. He was completely out of ammo. He holstered his gun, holding his sword out. He glared at the monsters surrounding him tentatively, unsure of how to proceed.

The first monster prowled toward him, fangs glistening in the dim lighting. It leaped at him, mouth wide and prepared to rip out his throat. Reynald stepped forward, catching it in the chin with the pommel of his sword. It fell to the ground, where he shoved his sword right into its eye socket.

More monsters ran at him, and he kept them away with more sweeps of his sword.

"WHY WON'T YOU ALL DIE?-!" He roared, the mass of monsters still coming at him. When he felled one, another would take its place and attempt to kill him. Goddesses, help me. He prayed in his thoughts.

He cut off the arm of a monster preparing to slice him with its claws, pivoting in his position to cleave off another monsters head. The resulting blood spray blinded a few of the monsters, and he struck them down as they were distracted. He fought like a rabid animal, like one of the monsters that tried to kill him. Hey, if it worked, it worked.

A haymaker from some monsters fist winded him, sending him flying. He hit the wall of the laboratory hard, sliding to the ground in a trail of blood. He couldn't feel his legs... He saw a bulge in his pocket.

He reached in, pulling it out. A last magazine of fire bullets. Lucky, he thought to himself. If he died here, he was taking everything else out in a blaze of glory.

He ejected the magazine, and threw it at a monster's face. It hit dead on, making the monster flinch. A swift motion later, he slid the full magazine into his gun, cocked it, and aimed it at the monster. He pulled the trigger.

A short bang later, the monster had a hole in its head and went up in flames. "BURN, BITCHES, BURN!" He laughed in a strangled voice, pain burning his lower body as flames burned the monsters around him. He kept shooting, monster after monster fell, and a wall of flames surrounded him, keeping the monsters at bay.

Goddesses protect me. He prayed once more, staring into the flames.

Before becoming a monster hunter, he was a part time worker for one of the founding companies of Avenir, which was a small time company during his high school years, but a huge ass conglomerate today. He worked for decent pay, until an accident at the factory he worked at left the place up in flames, and most of the workers dead. After the getting over the trauma, he hated the pitying looks people gave him when they saw him. As soon as he graduated high school, he said goodbye to his family, and went to travel the world with the Guild, as part of the Moderatist faction, personally worshipping Lady Green Heart.

He was publicly a Lastation Basilicom monster hunter who traveled to keep relations up with other Basilicoms, but in fact he "secretly" supported the Guild, completely against the Basilicom's persecution of them. His life was half working for the Basilicom, and living life as a guild member. He preferred the life that the guild offered, but he really needed the money from the Basilicom job to sustain his lifestyle. So keeping both jobs was essential.

He made quite a few friends over his travels. He learned to fight monsters, and began to love the thrills of dungeons and hunting for treasure. He felt sad, almost miserable at that moment, at the fact that it might all end today. Hopefully someone would keep his small but well-known reputation and legacy alive.

Maybe IF would, she owed him one after that treasure hunting incident on Lowee, near Guild City... He had saved her from a pack of Yetis after she went exploring... Her debt to him increased even more after he got her a pair of tickets to a 5pb concert... Though she did bail him out of this bar fight a few nights ago when they had arrived together on Planeptune...

Hopefully the Guild and/or the Basilicom would do something in his memory... But more than likely they'll just state him as MIA. It happened to many people in the Guild and the monster hunters of the Basilicom, to go missing in action, but most of us knew what it probably met. Change the M to a K, in MIA, and you've got the right answer.

Killed in action. A common fate in his profession, but still an unpleasant one...

"Someone save me..." He murmured quietly.

A monster finally grew a pair of balls, and walked through the flame. It was hurt for a while, but stalked toward the almost dead man on the ground. It picked him up by the neck, staring into his eyes.

"Fuck you." Reynald spat then spit saliva in its face. The monster roared, reeling a bladed fist back.

Goddesses, save me... He thought. The monsters fist flew forward.

Stab.

The blade impaled Reynald through the chest, spearing him through the heart. He died instantly. The monster let go, and walked away. The body of the monster hunter lay lifeless and crumpled on the ground.


"Here it is... The body of Reynald the Monster Exterminator... You've been quite the thorn in my side, but look at you now... Dead as a door nail and ripped to shreds."

A grey skinned, purple haired woman in gothic clothing prodded Reynald's body with her foot.

"At least your body is still more or less intact, from the preservation systems of this laboratory... I have quite the use for you. You there. Pick him up." She barked at a monster. The monster picked him up. "Bring him to our headquarters."

She turned around on her heel, and walked away. Her name was Arfoire. And she had quite the plan in store for what was left of Reynald.


"The research is almost complete." A scientist said to Arfoire, looking up at Reynald's body which was floating in a tube. "He will be ready soon for deployment."

"What has he been outfitted with?" Arfoire asked.

"Currently we have included weapon systems, neural implants, physical augmentations, but without sentience, he's simply a massively modified corpse." The scientist explained to Arfoire.

"Then I'll include a sentience... An AI... A Virus CPU." She grinned.

"My lady, if I may ask, what do you intend to accomplish with this weapon?" The scientist asked her.

"Of course, but shouldn't it be obvious?" Arfoire said, marvelling at the creation before her.

"I'm sorry, but I do not know what you mean? What are your intentions?"

"To destroy the goddesses!" She laughed evilly.


"We're ready to activate him."

"Best now since Histoire has been unsealed. We can progress with the plan earlier. Alright, proceed."

The scientist ran over to a panel, and a hologram appeared before him. He tapped a few holographic keys, typing in his password. Then when he was granted access, he checked over the subjects vitals. He was physically alive and reanimated, but psychologically dead, as if in a coma. Time to wake him up...

"Subject 001... Going Viral, in three... Two... One... Activate."

The subject twitched, showing its first movement in a long time. Its mouth reared open, and roared. Its muscles flexed, body convulsing as if it were in pain. It morphed for a split second before returning to human form. It grabbed it's head, continuing to roar.

"Excellent!" Arfoire said. "Awaken, My Weapon!" She shouted. "Awaken!"

Its eyes opened, blood red with segmented Xs and dots in the center of the eye for pupils. Gone was Reynald, Basilicom hunter and loyal Guild member. All was left was this weapon, wearing his body, his appearance. All that was left was this Virus.

Its eyes drifted to Arfoire. Words appearing in his HUD labelled her as Master. The tube drained of fluid, leaving him on the bottom, kneeling before Arfoire.

"Awaiting orders... Master." It said in a blank tone, its eyes glinting with an ominous glow.

"Then... I order you to..."


The Weapon stood at the main square of a town on Lowee. Holding his sword, soaked with blood, he set about planting evidence pointing to a monster attack. To the rest of the world, this town was attacked by monsters. Not a person.

If you could even count what attacked them as human. The weapon returned to Arfoire's hideout on the same landmass, and kneeled before her.

"Mission complete, Master." He said to her.

"Good work. That's the 12th town so far..."

"What are my new orders?"

"Train. Become strong, My Weapon. Become strong enough to enact my wrath amongst the goddesses. Do you understand?"

"Affirmative."

"Go. Complete your orders until I have new ones."

He nodded, standing. "I will become strong for you my Lady."


Histoire looked worriedly at video evidence from a town of Planeptune. She watched what this "man" did when he attacked a town. It was a monster, attacking and killing people. Then, even more worrying to her, Arfoire appeared. And finally, the icing on her heart attack cake, the thing referred to her as "Master".

"I have to stop this mindless machine..." She said. "It's a drone, a weapon made from a human body. It has a consciousness... Can that consciousness be overwritten?"

Her eyes widen. "That's it! Maybe it can be overwritten!" Ideas flowed into her head.

"She called it the Virus CPU... Maybe I can make an Anti-Virus CPU."


"Why does Histy want us to plant this little machine thing?" Neptune asked IF, as they patrolled the outskirts of a town on Lastation.

"For some reason." She replied, "I don't know exactly, but it might be important."

Neptune took a shovel, and began digging. Then, as if she was planting a tree, she put a block-like machine into the ground.

"There, we're done. Now let's find Compa. Hopefully no monsters are bothering her..."


The Weapon stood, facing the town on Lastation. Ironically, it was his home, his body's home, anyway. He walked forward, ready to start his mission of destruction. What he didn't notice, was triggering a laser tripwire during his step.

He fell to his knees, grabbing his head. Numbers and flickers of data flashed before his eyes. Pain riddled through his head, his mind felt like it was being soaked with oil and then set alight in the middle of a bonfire. He roared as images and commands alerted him to what was going on.

Firewalls being cracked, Intruder in the System- Firewalls shut down. Authorization over written. Installation of foreign program proceeding.

His mind felt like it was being ripped apart. The mind of the Virus was being shredded, erased. Soon, it would be gone. And something new would be in its place.

Installation Complete.

Welcome to the world... I think I'll call you Rouge. A voice said in his mind.

"Rouge..." The newly born consciousness murmured. "What are you...? What am I...?"

My name is Histoire. I am a True Goddess. And I created you, to do two things.

"And those things are...?" He asked, data flourishing in his mind to provide him with new information.

To fight Arfoire... And to protect the Goddesses.

"Goddesses...?" The data informed him about the goddesses of Gamindustri.

Classification: Eliminate- Overwritten. Classification: Protect. Those words flashed before his eyes.

"Affirmative." He said, blinking. "Or is it, "I understand?"... What's the right one?" He asked.

... You have a lot of learning to do. Here, just wait.

His mind felt like it burst into flame again, as information downloaded and branded itself into his memory. When the burning feeling stopped, he breathed heavily, falling to the ground.

"What... The... Fuck?"

... Hm... Swear words. You're going to be much like Blanc... I think she'll like you when you meet.

"So you created me?" He asked the voice named Histoire.

Yes, I did.

"So... What now? What do... I do?" He asked, speaking slowly as his newfound intelligence taught him some more things. "Am I... A puppet? A... A weapon?"

No. Of course not. You're your own person, your own thoughts. I will not treat you as my puppet, and I sure will not treat you as a weapon.

"What do I do now?"

I would say train... But you are strong already... So for now... I'd say for you to... I would like you to live.


Rouge sat in an apartment on Planeptune, watching the TV intently. So much was new to him, and he found out that he liked so many things. Sweets were one, weapons were another, monster killing and treasure hunting were a must, and as secret he kept even from Histoire, he had a secret thing for soap operas.

One of which, he was watching right now. He munched on popcorn as he watched the main character reunite for the fifth time with his fellow colleague/best friend/sister's murderer/love interest. It taught him a quite lot about human interactions. Though he did have to clarify a few of them with Histoire, but those mental conversations were awkward.

It was two weeks from his "birth", the day he was installed into this body. Not being ordered around was nice, but the memories of his Virus self... They made him sick. He watched the things that it had done at night, when instead of dreaming, he delved into a digital consciousness, where it felt like he was using a virtual reality computer.

And when he woke up, he felt ashamed, horrible; he wanted it to be gone, to erase "his" deeds from the world. He was made to be innocent, a protector. Not a murderer. But blood was on his hands.

They weren't his hands before, but they were now. "He" essentially was responsible for those crimes, those deaths, those murders. "He" made himself sick. He turned the TV off as the end credits rolled.

He swept the crumbs of popcorn from his shirt, and wiped the oil from his face. He leaned back into his bed, looking at the roof.

"Histoire? Are you there?"

Yes Rouge?

"What's going to happen now?"

We wait for Arfoire to do something.

"Alright." He agreed.

So, what have you been up to?

"Hunting monsters, eating food, watching TV." I reply.

What kind of TV do you watch?

"Some Lastation hospital drama called Drey's Anatomy."

Oh really? A soap opera? She sounded surprised.

"It's a nice show, a change from all the games I've played and the anime I've started to watch." I point out.

You're turning into a male version of Green Heart... She giggled over the mental connection.

"No... I just like entertainment media." I reply. "I'm not going to develop huge boobs overnight! ... Or am I?"

And you're turning into a male version of Compa as well...

"Who's Compa?"

This innocent, dense little nurse-in-training that's travelling with Neptune and IF.

"IF... The name sounds familiar." He muses. A twinge of pain struck his head. He grabbed it with his hands, groaning as he saw images flash through his mind.

He stood on a cliff, marvelling at the enormous futuristic city below.

"Come on Iffy! We've got arcades to visit!" He shouted over to his companion.

"Don't call me Iffy!" A shorter brown haired girl with dark green eyes and a bow in her hair walked up to him. She smacked his arm, scowling at her makeshift nickname.

"It suits you though." He points out, laughing.

"Why am I travelling with you again?"

"Well, we worship the same goddess, we're Guild members, we're friends, you owe me a few favours, and a few more that I've run out of fingers to count on." He said, counting the fingers on his left hand for emphasis. She grumbled. "So, what are your plans on this landmass?" He asked her.

"Treasure hunting." She said. "I hear I can find something here. What about you?"

"Monster hunting, Basilicom business, arcades, etc." He grinned. "Come on Iffy, let's go to a bar. I'm thirsty."

"And I'm underage." She pointed out.

"So? I'll cover." He still kept up his grin, and began to walk for the city.

"The same irresponsible Reynald... That attitude's probably going to get you killed someday, you know that?"

"I know... I know..."

Rouge took deep breaths as he watched the scene unfold. What the hell was going on? He saw that girl... IF...

Was this his past? But he didn't have a past! He was a CPU in some weapon's body! But that weapon was a corpse...

And that corpse used to be a living person... So were these flashbacks... His memories? Rouge rubbed his head, which was still pounding with pain.

Rouge! Are you okay?

"I'm fine- Actually... I don't know..."


Rouge stood in an abandoned castle on Leanbox, cutting away monsters with his katana. It was fun, it was simple, and it brought him back to a primal instinct. He didn't know whether those instincts came from his body, the Virus or the human being. Or maybe they came from him...

He kicked a monster away, and sliced it in half with a sweep of his sword. He kicked the still bleeding carcass at another monster, causing it to trip. As its face met ground, it also met his foot. He stomped its skull flat, instantly killing it.

Whipping out his gun, he fired bullets into the next few monsters, dropping them to the ground, dead. Finishing off the last monster, he set off for the boss. He was doing excellently. Hopefully he wouldn't have to use that.

He entered an enormous room, looking around. It was a perfect and cliché place for an epic boss battle. He played enough RPGs and action games to know that. He walked to the center of the room, looking around.

"Play." An epic soundtrack played in his ears. He smiled. Histoire had good taste in music. Also, he loved her for installing an mp3 function in his head.

That was a rather nice perk alongside the HUD.

ROOAAAAAAAR!

He raised his head. Flapping there, was a huge red dragon. Typical monster boss here on Leanbox, dragons were somewhat common. Though there was a possibility that this was some undiscovered type. He rolled to the side to dodge a swath of flame.

Well, he was screwed here. He didn't think he had enough bullets to take such a thing down, and well, without that,he couldn't even scratch it. He ran around and around the room in circles, dodging flames. He fired back with his gun, water bullets hurting it slightly, but not enough.

He would run out soon. The dragon swooped down, ready to charge. He jumped to the left, holding his katana to the side. As the dragon flew past him, he carved his sword into its side, cutting a long line into its skin.

It roared in pain, swinging its tail at Rouge. The tail caught him in the chest, sending him flying upwards. The dragon aimed it's mouth at him, prepared to eat him. He couldn't even dodge.

Self preservation temporarily outweighed morality. He was going to use it.

"Corruption Drive."

He raised his hand at the dragon; a white disc radiating a black flame appeared before him.

"Execute." The disc began to spin. It turned into a ball of grey light that flew into his palm. Pain rocketed through his body, as if someone stabbed hundreds of white hot nails upon every inch of him. The pain would make a normal human insane.

But he was no normal human. His body began to pulse, morphing. The pain continued as he changed shape. Armor appeared on his body as bugs and glitches appeared in reality.

His back bulged, and his clothes phased to allow misshapen half mechanical and half organic wings to grow out of his back. Tears fell down his face as his body finished the transformation. He looked barely human, with the exception of parts of his body. This was the body of a virus that plagued reality.

This was the true form of the Virus CPU.

The pupil in his right eye snapped to the left, the segmented X now a crosshair. "Target Locked. Eliminate." He said in a blank, mechanical voice. His sword had grown in size, and his gun was now a rifle.

His wings stretched in the air, and he reeled his sword back as the dragon flew closer. He slashed forward, catching the blade in the horizontal of the dragon's jaw. He pressed forward, and with momentum, the sword moved as well. Together, they cut a long gash in the dragon's maw.

The dragon roared in pain, swerving in the air to give chase. Rouge aimed his gun, HUD assisting where to shoot. Three quick shots, three holes riddled in the dragons wings. It corkscrewed to the floor, skidding across the floor. It sent flames at him, but he darted away from them.

He dashed toward the dragon at immense speed, landing on its neck and driving its head to the floor. He raised his sword up, and looked the dragon its eyes. Its look told him, "You win, make it quick."

He nodded in response. Then he brought the sword down.

He wiped the dragon's blood from his hands as he flew from the castle. Then he began the arduous process of reversing the transformation. He dropped to the ground, withering in pain as the wings folded back into his body and the armor faded away inside him. He rolled over, and looked at the sky.

It began to lightly rain.

Did you use it? Histoire asked him over their connection.

"I used it." He replied.

I'm sorry you had to.

"No... It's alright. What do I do now?"

I need you to fight. The voice wasn't Histoire's.

"Who are you?-!"

Come to my aid, Weapon. Your services are required. That voice... No, he couldn't. He wouldn't.

Arfoire! GET AWAY FROM HIM! Histoire's voice shouted at the other voice.

My, my, Histoire. You can't take away what's already mine. The other voice, Arfoire chided.

Rouge stared in fear as he stood up. But he wasn't controlling his body. He stumbled forward.

Come to me Weapon.

ROUGE! FIGHT IT!

Rouge struggled to gain control, but it was futile. He kept moving against his will.

I have use for you. Arfoire said, Come to me.

NO!

Histoire! Shut up!

He dropped to his knees. One second he had control, the next he was being controlled. The two goddesses waged a war in his head, fighting over him. His mind was set aflame as it became the subject of a vicious game of tug of war. He fell to the ground twitching and screaming in pain.

For this would not be the last time this happened.


Ten Months Later

"You did not need my help at all, did you."

Not really.

It was a few months after Arfoire's defeat. On a personal decision, he kept as far away from the other goddesses as possible, to avoid giving into Arfoire's commands, after she succeeded a few times. After her defeat, he just resumed his life, keeping in touch with Histoire. So he was basically a hermit, living on the move with only a few books, his weapons, a debit card to the National Bank of Gamindustry, and a laptop.

He had built up quite a bit of life experience, but there were still a few small gaps in his knowledge.

So what are you up to now? Histoire asked.

"Just wandering around Leanbox... Not much else to do."

There really isn't much to do now... We're at relative peace, with the exceptions of the monsters. Spawn discs are still out there, spawning a lot of monsters...

"I promise to deal with as many as I can." He said.

Good to hear. You know, maybe you can finally meet the goddesses. Even though you're a CPU yourself, you still worship Green Heart devoutly. Why is that?

"Because of what kind of person she is."

You're not simply a fanboy?

"No, I am not a fanboy- Why are we talking about this again?"

Because we can. She giggled over the link.

"I figured as much." He grumbled.

He sat down against a tree, eating a small lunch of fish and rice. There really wasn't much left to do. Monster extermination was commonplace in his schedule, but the rest was simply lazing about or traveling to another place. He had enough money to settle down, but where was the fun in that?

It was the adventures life for him.

"Nyaaa..." A cat walked up to him, rubbing against his leg.

"Would you like some fish, little guy?" He smiled, taking a reasonably sized bit of fish and holding it out to the cat. It ate it happily, before curling up against his side. He petted it quietly, enjoying the day.

His head began to throb, but he kept it to himself, shrugging it off. A few minutes later, the throbbing became a blinding pain.

I'm baaaaaaaack! A voice giggled.

YOU! YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO BE GONE! Histoire shouts.

Oh pooh, that's a load of nonsense.

Snap.

Rouge stares in fear at his hand, which had snapped the little cat's neck.

I've still got control. And now I have a job for you my weapon...

His world went black.


Rouge came to, eyes widening in horror. Smoke and flames surrounded him, bodies and puddles of blood all over the place. His sword was jammed in the chest of a little girl, dead at his feet. He dropped to his knees, shock taking over.

He scrambled up, grabbed his sword and ran like hell into a nearby forest.

"WHAT HAPPENED?-!"

Arfoire took control... I'm so sorry... Histoire cried.

"And she made me... SHE MADE DO THAT?-!" He sobbed. "NOOOOOO!"

He fell against a tree, scared out of his mind. He pulled his knees together, and cried his eyes out.

"I can't let this happen again..."

He picked himself up, and he ran into the wilderness.


It was one week since the massacre he committed at the town on Leanbox. He had holed up in the forests, a former shell of himself since Histoire and Arfoire reengaged their war over his body. Pain ravaged his head, his mind stretched to its limits and his body hard pressed during the battle for control. He couldn't stand it anymore.

Are you okay?

"No... I'm not." He replied. "I want it to be over..."

It will be over soon.

"No, it won't! What if it happens again! What if you lose another struggle! More people are going to die at my hands if Arfoire regains control! I have to make sure it NEVER happens again!" He shouts.

You can't be suggesting- NO! I WON'T LET YOU! I'm sending Green Heart to you now! Don't you dare-

"I'm sorry Histoire." He reached into his pocket, and pulled out a combat knife. He gave it a small sad smile, twirling it around.

ROUGE! DON'T YOU DARE! THIS ISN'T YOUR LAST OPTION!

"Goodbye Histoire... I love you too... Like as sister, mind you..." He gave a grim smile. Arfoire will not have her weapon. He had a short life...

But it was a nice, fulfilling one. He had very few regrets. Such as not living long, and not making it to see the end of Drey's Anatomy. He held the knife out, aiming the point at him.

ROUGE!

He jammed the knife into his chest. He fell to the ground, lying in a growing puddle of blood.


Vert, also known as Green Heart, walked quietly on her nature walk. Histoire and some of her advisors advised her to take this walk at least once a week for her health. She refused at the beginning, but agreed when the advisors promised to increase her already enormous gaming budget. She was already out the door when they finished talking.

She loved the beauty and serenity of her landmass. She would be staying longer after she gave up her goddess powers... At least Histoire told her that they all would get their powers back eventually. Something was bothering her, as she walked through the forests a little far away from her castle.

She noticed a long tendril of red, snaking toward her. She kneeled down, touching it.

"This consistency... Blood?" She gapes.

Her head snaps up, looking for where it had come from. There, from behind that tree! She stood up, running in her dress toward the source. She stopped, eyes widening in sheer horror at her discovery.

Lying there with a knife in his chest, was a man's body. The way it looked like, someone stabbed him, and he tried to pull the knife out. She kneeled down beside him, looking him over. A murderer was somewhere on Leanbox.

Then her eyes widened even more. The man's chest moved. He was breathing. He was alive.

She reached into the folds of her dress, and pulled out potions. She forced them down the man's throat, and slowly extracted the knife from his chest. He would live, but he needed immediate attention. She pulled out her cell phone, and dialled a number.

"I NEED HELP!"


Rouge woke up on a bed somewhere. He struggled to sit up, and then noticed he was half naked, covered with bandages. His clothes and weapons sat in the corner of the room, which he had noticed was an infirmary. He had lived...

"Are you alright?"

He blinked. Standing right there, holding a tray of food was Lady Green Heart.

"I thought you might be hungry, so I made you something to eat." She pulled up a chair with her foot and sat down on it.

"T-Thank you, my Lady." He quickly replied. "For everything..."

"Were you attacked? Who did such a horrible thing to you?" She asked.

"I... I'd rather not talk about it."

She passed him a bowl of soup, and gestured for him to drink it. "Drink it, you'll feel better." She urged.

He brought it to his lips, and drank.

"What's your name?" She asked.

"Rouge." She said. "I should really be going, Lady Green Heart." He made to stand, but pain kept him in the bed.

"Call me by my other name, Vert." She smiled.

"Okay... Vert."

"So, why are you on Leanbox? I'm pretty sure you're a monster hunter, based on your equipment."

"I'm... I'm a traveller. More like a wanderer." He answered, choosing his words carefully. It wouldn't do to alarm her or frighten her. "I take jobs for money."

She smiled. "Come on, let's get you out of here, you can tell me about your travels on the way." She carefully helped him up, and led him over to his stuff. He got clothed, and put on his weapons.

He had to leave soon. Who knew what would happen if Arfoire got control while he was near Lady Green Heart? It would be horrible, absolutely disastrous. She brought him, surprisingly, to her room.

"You know how to play games?" She asked with a smile. "I haven't been able to play with anyone new for a while, and most of the people I play with are really easy to beat." She holds out the controller to him.

"I do. Let's play then." He took the controller and sat down beside her.


Victory, Player 2! flashed across the screen.

"Eat that!" He grinned. She gaped at the screen.

"Again! I will not be beaten in my element!"

Game after game, sometimes she would win, sometimes she would lose. Grins appeared on their faces from beginning to end. Time flew by, and soon the sun was setting.

"That was a lot of fun!" She chimed, as she ejected the game disc from the system. "What do you want to play now?"

"Actually, I've got to get going."

Her smile drooped. "Alright... I'll escort you to the gates."

He followed her to the gates to the castle grounds, deep in thought.

"You sure you don't want to stay for a while? I haven't had so much fun in a while."

"I'm sorry, I can't-"

You are going to stay, or I am going to hand divine intervention on your well shaped ass. You hear me?

"Actually, sure. Why not?" He said, with a hesitant smile. This was coming from the guy who was slowly turning Histoire into a yandere.

"Yay!" She cheered, grabbing him by the hand and dragging him back to the castle.


He sat awake on his bed, unable to sleep. The sounds of Vert playing games seeped through the walls. He stood up, and opted to wander the halls of the castle. His mind was alive with numerous thoughts.

Maybe should just leave, never come back. It would make everything so much easier. He found himself on a balcony, high up with a wide view of Leanbox's main city. The moon was full, everything was quiet.

He reached into his jacket, and pulled out his gun. Twirling it expertly, he looked at it, and played around with its feel. Tonight, it would be over. Arfoire would be without a weapon.

No one would miss him. Besides, this body was a corpse in the beginning, it would be a simple matter to go back to that. He held the gun firmly in his hand. Then he aimed it to his head, finger curling around the trigger.

"NOOOO!" Someone shrieked.

He turned around. He saw Vert running at him, and tackling him. She wrestled the gun out of his hands, and threw it away. But the momentum she used to tackle him sent them flying over the parapet, and hurtling to the ground.

They were falling, and they were going to die at this height. Vert screamed as she fell. Rouge manoeuvred himself beside her, and held onto her tight. Time to do it again...

"Corruption Drive. Wing Program. Execute."

His back bulged, and he gritted his teeth to cope with the pain. The wings grew on his back, and gave a heavy flap. They stopped falling. He rose in the air slowly, murmuring comforting words in Vert's ears.

He settled her down on the balcony, rubbing away her tears with an armoured monstrous hand.

"Why would you do such at thing? Were you responsible for what happened at the forest? Why did you grow wings? What's going on?" She cried.

"I... I don't know how to explain." He said honestly.

"I can explain." Our heads snap to the entranceway to the balcony. "Rouge, I'm disappointed in you." It was Histoire.

"Histoire..." They both mouthed.

"I can't believe you! Suicide?-! That was your choice! Don't even think of flying away! Yes, that's right, get over here!" She said to Rouge sternly.

He kneeled down beside Histoire.

"When did you get here?" Vert asked her.

"We all arrived just a few minutes ago. They're all waiting for you in your room."

"How do you know Rouge? Why can he transform-" She began to ask, but was cut off by Histoire.

"We'll talk about that later. It's a personal tale, he'll explain to you when he wants to. But now, we need to have a private conversation."

Vert nodded, and with one worried look at Rouge, she left. Histoire stared down Rouge, a sad look on her face. Smack. He flinched, as Histoire slapped him.

"I... I don't know what to say to you anymore... I know you feel terrible for what happened, so do I, but... That wasn't the right choice."

"I... I killed them. I'm a murderer. Don't murderers deserve to die-"

She slapped him again. "You're no murderer. Arfoire set you to do that. It's not your fault. It never was." She hugged him.

"Don't you dare scare me like that."

"Okay Histy."

"Oh shush, it's enough having Neptune call me that." She giggled. "Now, you have goddesses and people to meet. It seems like you're getting along well with one." She smiled.

She took him by the sleeve, and led him back to Vert's room.

"Histy! Who's this?" Neptune asked.

"Is he your boyfriend?" Compa asked.

"No! Introduce yourself-" Histoire was interrupted by IF, who stormed up to him.

"YOU BASTARD! I THOUGHT YOU WERE DEAD!" She screamed, punching him on the face and beating him on the chest.

"Is he Iffy's ex-boyfriend?" Compa asked Histoire.

"HE'S JUST MY FRIEND!" She argued, then turned back to Rouge. "REYNALD, EXPLAIN YOURSELF! WE THOUGHT YOU WERE DEAD! THE GUILD GAVE YOU A FUNERAL WITHOUT A BODY! WHERE WERE YOU, YOU BASTARD!"

"IF, Reynald is dead." Histoire interjected.

"But he's standing right here!" She argued.

"Reynald did die." Rouge spoke up. "Because I am simply a consciousness inhabiting his reanimated, weaponized body..." He explained.

"D-Dead...?" Everyone in the room gaped at him.

"Oh, I am very much alive but... The Reynald IF knew, it's IF, right? Yes, the Reynald IF knew is dead. Died in a dungeon on Planeptune..." He explained.

"Who would do such a horrible thing? To someone's body?" Noire spoke up.

"A certain bitch named Arfoire. You could say... I defected, and refused to follow her orders, and I ended up meeting Histoire." He lied through his teeth.

"But you're still a person, right? Not some monster, just a person who's living in someone else?" Compa asked.

"More or less, that's right." He answered. He turned to IF. "I'm sorry for your loss." He said honestly.

"It's... It's fine." She said, dropping into a chair.

"It's a little startling... But it's okay... Why is he here, anyway?" Blanc asked.

"He's on protection duty." Histoire explained. Eyebrows were raised at this fact.

"Then who's he supposed to be protecting?"

Rouge's eyes widened, head shaking at a rapid pace at Histoire. "He's going to be protecting you all of course." He slapped his head as Histoire smiled at him and everyone else.

"But we don't need this guy's protection! He's probably a weakling!" Blanc argued.

"Oh, I can assure you he's no weakling. But you're all far weakened without your goddess powers. He's here to cover the blind spots while you grow stronger." She explained.

"No. I say no." Rouge spoke up. "Don't you remember what's going to happen if you screw up?" He hissed at Histoire, causing a few eyebrows to rise once more.

"I know the consequences. But I won't slip up again. Just do your best to control yourself, and I'll do mine."

"So... Who's he staying with?"

"No one-"

"He's staying here!" Vert chimed, smiling at him. "He promised he would anyway!"

"And when did this promise happen?" Noire asked her, suspicious.

"Earlier today!" She replied. Even more questions sprung up from there.

"But why would he stay here of all places?" Blanc asked her.

"We played together, a little roughly I might add, and he's here to stay because of all the fun we've had!" She explained. Blushes appeared on everyone.

"So he's taking responsibility for the results of his actions?" Neptune asked.

"Well, you could put it that way." Vert smiled.

"... Vert, are you pregnant?" Compa asked her, eyes wide and sparkling.

"Eh, what?"

"You're pregnant! You said you played together, and had a lot of rough fun! What else could it possibly be? Why would he be staying here after that? If it were a one night-er, day stand, then he would be gone already!" Compa exclaimed. "So, do you think it's going to be a boy or a girl? When are you getting married?"

"I'm not pregnant!" She shrieked, embarrassed with a flushed face. "We did nothing improper!"

"He's going to be a bodyguard and a playmate." Histoire explained. "Like an escort."

"So he's staying here on Leanbox, why?"

"Because the more zealous types of people are here, and they have the most monster reports at the moment. When he's needed at another landmass, he will travel there."

"Don't I get a say in this-"

"Of course you don't!" Histoire chimed. He grumbled, swearing more vibrantly than Blanc on a bad day. "Now off to bed all of you, it's late. We'll continue this conversation in the morning."


Rouge found himself on the balcony again, staring out over the city. His gun, sword and all his other weapons were confiscated by Histoire. He leaned back into his chair, looking out into the night sky. The stars were beautiful tonight.

He blinked, and then found himself looking into a pair of blue stars that shone very brightly. Vert loomed over him, a questioning expression on her face. "May I sit with you?" She asked.

"Fine with me." He replied. She pulled a chair out, and sat beside him.

"Why would you do such a thing?" She asked him.

"I felt ashamed for some terrible things that I have done." He replied. "They weren't pretty, not at all... And I just wanted it to end, to get over it."

"But to that point? What could be so terrible that you would drive a knife into your chest and put a gun to your head?"

"Things that you don't want to know." He simply replied. They were silent, looking out at the sights.

"So... Will you stay? Or will you leave? You sounded like you don't want to be here."

"I'll stay... For a while only... I just need to get my bearings, and figure out which foot to start off on first." He answered.

"Can I ask you something? Why can you transform?"

"I'd like to keep that private for now." He gave a sad smile.

"Okay then..."

"I had fun today. Thanks for everything... Including saving my life."

"You're welcome."

They smiled at each other, and resumed looking out at the city.

"It's getting cold, don't you think?" She asked. She shivered as wind swept by.

"Yeah, it is... Here, wear this." He stood up, taking off his jacket. He walked to her, and covered her with it like a blanket. "That should do it." He said, sitting down.

He shivered. "Now I'm cold." He smiled, jokingly.

"... Let's try this." Vert stood up, and sat down in his lap. She leaned back on him, covering them both with his jacket. He blushed furiously as they kept each other warm.

She yawned. "You better not take advantage of me." She hissed.

"I won't, I won't. I'm here to protect you, after all." He chuckled.

She smiled, and nestled her head against his shoulder. Soon, she was asleep.

You seem like you're having fun.

"I trust you on this Histoire."

I will not let you down. Now get some rest. We have a big day tomorrow.

"Why?"

We're going to Lowee. Specifically, Guild City. We're going to your second home.


Chapter 1 Complete! Not much to say to people here. This is something I wanted to get out and done... So R/R, enjoy life, read great fiction, and let the creative juices flow. And not only for you lemon writers. Aw well. – EthernalRain