WARNING: THIS STORY CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR ALL OF TRIGUN. NO SEE, NO READ. (unless of course you like spoilers or whatever ^_^) Standard disclaimer, I do not own Trigun, or Wolfwood, if I did, I would be waaaaay too busy to write fanfic ^_-
He did not know what day it was anymore. He was dreaming he thought and in this dream he was traveling. He did not know for how long, or where from, but there was a whiteness. Everything and everywhere white. He could feel the dream begin to fade into waking, but still the whiteness persisted. He opened his eyes slowly. He was in a low room with lights, flickering blue white. The floor was made of shining tiles, and as he stared at it he realized that he was sitting in a large chair. Wolfwood sat up.
"You're dead." a voice answered before he could finish the thought, let alone the sentence. A man stood next to him.
"It's the first thing everyone asks" the man explained in response to Wolfwood's shocked expression. Things began coming back to him then, Tonim town, the fight with Chapel, the gun going off, making his unsteady way to the little white church.... He stopped himself from thinking about it and instead looked around the room.
"Then... this is Heaven?" It was certainly not how he had pictured it.
"No," the man answered. "This is not heaven." Well, that explained it then. Wolfwood frowned. He had said it himself, his sins were to heavy to ever atone. If this wasn't heaven it must be...
"Oh no!" the man interrupted as if reading his thoughts again "No, not...there either" and he smiled at him.
"In between. Everyone comes here first." the man said, and for the first time Wolfwood took a good look at him. He looked middle aged and what was left of his hair was a mousy brown. He was still smiling.
"Now, if you will just come with me, I can show you the..."
"Now wait just a minute here..." Wolfwood cut him off. None of this made much sense yet. "I ain't goin' anywhere till you you answer some questions" The man who had turned to go now turned back.
"Well for starters... who are you?": The angel smiled again. It was beginning to get on Wolfwood's nerves.
"I am a welcomer, I stand at the gate, figuratively speaking mind you, to initiate new souls who have just made the crossing. You may call me Bob."
"Bob?" Wolfwood raised an eyebrow. The man shrugged.
"It's a universal name. Now if you have no more questions..."
"Now wait just a cotton pickin' minute!" He was getting impatient with this oddly named angel, and the flickering too-white lights. "What is in-between, what am I doing here? More importantly, what about my friends, the insurance girls and needle-noggin, where are they, what is happening to them?"
Bob listened to his questions placidly "Naturally, they are where you left them. They are continuing on their own life paths. In answer to your other questions, In-Between is simply in-between. Neither Heaven nor Hell. Souls come here first after they have made the crossing to wait for judgement. I can show you around if you like. Just up ahead..." He turned again to go. Wolfwood leapt forward and grabbed the front of his immaculate white robes.
"But I have to go back!!!!"
Bob stopped speaking and only spluttered for a moment incoherently. He finally managed to form the words "You what?"
"I have to go back. I made a mistake."
"Now listen here!" He was starting to get a little irritated. "You can't just go back! Its natural to have regrets but..."
"But they need my help!" Wolfwood was getting a little desperate, pulling tighter on Bob's robes. Bob sighed.
"Why do I always get the difficult ones?" He brushed Wolfwood's hands off of him. "This is supposed to be a simple job. Take the soul, show them around... I'm not supposed to have to deal with this sort of..." He pointed a finger. "Listen, you had your chance. Your life is over, finis, done with. Get used to the idea." Wolfwood looked him in the eye.
"You're an angel aren't you?" Bob flushed
"Well yes, but...."
"Then can't you do something about his? Listen, I did a lot of things I'm not proud of, made mistakes that I can't ever fix. But maybe, just maybe, this is one I can. My friends are in danger." Bob sighed.
"What is it you think I can do?"
"Can't you just send me back?" Bob raised an eyebrow.
"Your body is not only no longer functional and full of holes, it is six feet under the ground. Your friends buried you in Tonim Town, had a lovely little service and everything." Wolfwood thought about this.
"Couldn't you just make me a new body?" Bob shook his head.
"New human bodies my friend are made in only one way, and before you even say it," he shook his finger at Wolfwood who had opened his mouth to speak, "I don't see what earthly good you would do your friends in diapers and footy pajamas.
Wolfwood was about to argue the point further when something Bob had said suddenly hit him.
"Wait a minute... you said 'human' bodies..." Bob looked decidedly uncomfortable. "Well.... it's dangerous but..."
"But there's a way?" he asked eagerly.
"Yes... I could send you into the body of a lesser creature but...."
"I'll take it." he answered. Bob frowned again.
"But, as I was about to say, it's very risky. You could come back as a dog, or a lizard, or a thomas... or..."
"Can't you control it?"
"Well, it's a matter of finding a willing vessel, but yes" Bob admitted "it can be controlled to a degree." Wolfwood smiled.
"Well that's alright then. Just try to keep it warm blooded could ya?" Bob was hesitant.
"If you're so determined...I suppose..." Then, not entirely willing to admit defeat. "It hasn't been done in a long time!" Wolfwood did not say anything, he just stood there looking at him steadily. Bob could only sigh. "Follow me."
He led Wolfwood out of the low room with the white lights into a hallway with more of the same. They walked a long time in silence and Wolfwood was beginning to wonder if he had tricked him and was now merely leading him wherever he had wanted to take him in the first place when Bob stopped in front of a section of wall.
"Here." he said.
"Where?" Wolfwood started to ask, but the wall had already begun to part, like water, right in front of him.
Wolfwood had not realized he was staring. This room, unlike the others he had visited so far, was not white. Instead it glowed with a faint green light emanating from numbers and letters in console-like formations along the walls. The glow was accompanied by a faint humming. He stepped into the room, and Bob followed, moving imediately to a console on the right-hand wall. Bob moved his hands over it briefly and the room filled with familiar white light. Wolfwood looked around him.
"Now" Bob was saying. "There are problems with time shift when we do this sort of thing." Wolfwood looked back at him.
"Time as you know it is irrelevant here. This is eternity, the mechanics of time have no hold on this place. We do not use this device very often and as a result, it is not perfectly in synch with the mechanics of time you are familiar with." Wolfwood raised an eyebrow.
"Care to run that by me again? In English?"
"You could end up at a time other than your point of death. Days, even weeks into the past, or the future for that matter."
"Can you lean one way?" Bob nodded.
"Then aim for the past." As uninviting as revisting any moment of his past seemed, it would do no good to arrive after the fact.
"I hope you understand the risk you are taking" Bob said. He nodded. "Then step into the tube."
"What..." But his question was cut off as a section of the floor in the shape of a cylinder began to rise. He waited till it had stopped and stepped inside. Bob's hands were moving fast over the glowing symbols.
"Willing vessel located... preparing to transfer..." The faint hum he had noted as he stepped into the room was increasing in volume and intensity. "I don't know how long you will have," Bob had to yell over the growing sound of the device. "A contact will be sent to you to inform you of your return time and place. You MUST return at the time and place specified by your contact. Do you understand?"
He was about to yell "Not really." When he felt something grab him inside. It was like a hand had just grabbed hold of a rope he never knew existed just behind his belly button, and it was pulling. He thought he might be sick. The room began to shimmer, and Bob's hands, the consoles and the walls blurred in and out. As the fist inside him tightened its grip, he suddenly heard Bob shout "Aw crap!" Wolfwood was about to ask what had gone wrong when the fist stopped its insitent pulling and instead, yanked.
The room blipped out entirely in a flash of burning white Sucked into a void, a tunnel of nothingness, he was being pulled down it at the speed of light or faster. He could feel himself dissolving into the bright white oblivion and he opened his mouth to scream. Then it all stopped. Just stopped.
Everything was black. He came to himself slowly. His head was still ringing, and his mouth felt like he had been sucking on cotton balls. He tried to push through the fuzz in his mind, struggled to open his eyes. Through the haze he could make out a bar.
"I feel like I've been drug behind a runaway thomas..." he groaned. Or at least he tried to, but all that came out was:
END CHAPTER 1
Not much to say yet here. This was my sanity as I was trying to finish finals. Now that I am out of school I will try to do a chapter each week or so. Feel free to let me know what you thought ^_^