He was drowning. He was going to die; he knew it. The air here was so thick he thought if he had the strength he could swim through it. His heart was pounding in his chest, his lungs expanding rapidly to pull in air. There was so much weight on his chest – he couldn't breathe. He couldn't speak.


He needed to get to Gil. He had killed Gil's master, his source of light. He needed to see it again – Gil's smile, his blush, kneeling in front of him out of devotion. He was sure it was gone but the ache was gnawing and unrelenting. He needed to see Gil, to tell him that it wasn't him. He doesn't know who that was but that wasn't him. He would never hurt his Gil like that.

He was fighting to stay conscious, one hand clenching desperately at his throat and the other clawing toward the surface. His body was moving, he knew, and his panic increased as he imagined what he was doing right now. Jack had taken over and Oz was powerless to stop him. He cried out in anguish, the sound caught in the thick medium of air.


A voice, a voice so full of fury and intent to kill tore through his mind, wrenching the air from his lungs.

That couldn't be...

He needed to fight this. This wasn't how things were supposed to be. Oz didn't even know who he was anymore, his existence was flawed. He understood now, his sin was his very existence. He was tempted to give up, to drown in the depths of his mind and let Jack take the reigns, but he had to find Gil. He could feel the blood rushing in his ears now, spots erupting behind his eyes as he fought. Desperately, his arms feeling as though they were trying to rip through rubber as he resisted the other conscience within him.

He felt himself laugh, a maniacal, twisted laugh, his scythe raised above his head as he grinned. And then it was Oz, not Jack. As he fought for control of his body he felt a jolt, and soon he was on his hands and knees, sputtering and gasping for air.

"Gil... Gil! Where are you?"

He was shivering uncontrollably now, the other conscience still attempting to dominate. Coughing, Oz gripped his aching chest and finally he could see. Gil was there.

But it wasn't his Gil.

His Gil would never look at him like that.

Gil's eyes were wide and cruel and pained and hating.

Oz couldn't tear his eyes away, his heart lurching painfully as he saw Gil shakily raise his gun level to his master's head.

I believed in forever for you, Gil.

Gil was supposed to serve him forever. His longest friend, his dearest person, his precious servant, his love, his everything wanted him dead. He opened his mouth to speak but his throat was dry.

"Gil," he managed to choke out in a whisper.

"You killed my master!" Gil was seething, shaking with fury as angry tears rolled down his chin. "I hate you... I hate you... Why did you do this to me?"

"I didn't... Gil, please!" Oz was clawing helplessly on the ground, his hands only serving to pull up loose dirt. Couldn't Gil see that his master was right here? Or had he been forgotten about, replaced with the memory of his old master.

I really shouldn't exist.

Oz's worthlessness crashed down on him then. Who was he if he wasn't Oz Vessalius? Who was he if his servant wasn't his treasured Gilbert?


What a laughable word. He lay here helpless, worthless, spitting out dirt, with his servant pointing a gun at him ready to shoot. There was no such thing as forever. And right now, more than anything, he was angry at Gil for making him believe in him.

I want to die.

Something strange happened then. As soon as he resolved himself to die, he was filled with renewed energy. He slowly placed his knees under him and attempted to stand, swaying slightly as he straightened. He had a slight smile on his face, but it was empty, as if Oz had already left his body.

He limped, slowly, each step taking seconds. He coughed, blood dripping down his chin and he wiped it with the back of his hand. He had to know then. If he was really going to die, he had to know.

"Gil..." he coughed, "Am I your master?"

He continued toward Gilbert, gazing at him with eyes that were empty, dead, not quite looking at him but also not looking anywhere but him.

They had a moment then. As Gilbert put his finger on the trigger, crazed, and Oz continued to look at him, questioning, hopeful in his pathetic desperation to maintain a reason to live.

And then he pulled the trigger.