I'm back from an unofficial hiatus! Sorry for the long wait!

Unsuccessful Endeavours

Tsuna wanted to take back all his words about being contented or happy or anything else.

Reborn's training was downright hell.

This is hell! Tsuna thought as he dodged another bullet from Reborn.

"You're going to have to do better than that, dame-Tsuna." Reborn said with a devilish smirk.

Three days ago, Reborn began to tutor and train Tsuna, giving the boy the moniker 'Dame-Tsuna' since Luce was all hyped up about using Japanese honorifics and that Tsuna was doing very poorly academic-wise. Reborn drummed in world history, Italian, Japanese, politics, and everything that was needed to know and in three days, Tsuna was already feeling the heat. That would be an understatement actually. Tsuna was ready to collapse at any moment.

They had lessons in the morning, training with Colonello and Lal after that, lunch, followed by training with evil Reborn till dinner. After that he was free to do whatever he wanted but of course, Tsuna was already too tired to even do anything else besides sleep.

"Don't you want to be strong? Don't you want me to stop calling you Dame-Tsuna?" Reborn taunted, shooting another round of bullets at the child.

"Hieeee! I -I know! But this-"

"Stop talking and keep dodging, dame-Tsuna."

Tsuna sighed wearily as he missed another projectile by an inch, almost tripping over his own feet.

"Isn't Reborn pushing Tsuna a little too hard?... He's only six after all." Skull said casually to Fon as they watched the intense training session.

The Chinese man merely smiled and shook his head. "Reborn's tactics may be harsh but look at Tsunayoshi now. He has made tremendous improvements in both academic and physical aspects. Even though he still can't defend himself against the type of people in our dark world, he can still take down an average man on the streets." Fon opened his eyes and slid his arms into his sleeves before walking away slowly. "Tsunayoshi has potential, that I can see. Sometimes..." he stopped in his tracks and his eyes narrowed. Fon turned to where Tsuna was. Something was off. He was about to break into a run when a loud cry was heard.

Skull gasped and dashed over to where Tsuna fell and gasped again when he saw the bullet wound on his leg. "Tsuna!"

"Shit." Reborn muttered before running towards Tsuna, throwing the gun aside. What have I done?...

"I'll carry him to the infirmary. Call Verde." Fon said, scooping up the whimpering boy into his arms. He swiftly jumped over the fence of the open-air training grounds with minimal jerks.

"What the hell happened, Reborn?! I didn't think you'd actually shoot him!" Skull yelled, completely ignoring how frustrated Reborn looked with his palm pressed against his forehead.

"Shut up, lackey." Reborn growled through gritted teeth. "I... I just got a little distracted!"

"Distracted?! Look what it did to Tsuna! What if you had shot him in the chest or his head?! He could have died!"

"I said shut up! He didn't die okay?! Argh! Just leave me alone for a while!" Reborn stormed off, leaving Skull to fume at his comrade.

~~~~~~~.

"Don't worry Tsunayoshi. We're reaching the infirmary soon." Fon assured the brunet who started to tear up. He had never been shot before and now, all he could think of was the excruciating pain he was feeling. His small hands gripped tightly onto Fon's red outfit.
Being known to be the fastest one, Fon reached the infirmary in less than two minutes. Placing Tsuna down on the bed gently, he sat down beside him and waited with a calm expression. "Don't worry Tsuna, you'll be fine." Fon pressed a cloth to Tsuna's wound, resulting in a loud yelp from the child.

Crimson stained the white cloth and when Fon was about to drop it and roll up the boy's pant sleeve to see the wound when the door opened noisily. "Verde." Fon said softly, knowing who it was without turning around.

"Yes, yes. I heard. Shot by Reborn, surprisingly. I'll handle this, you can leave now." Verde said with a bored expression. Fon got up and left the room, but not before looking back to give Tsuna a reassuring smile.

Oh my gosh oh my gosh I'm going to die! This seriously hurts and now, this... This mad doctor is going to help me?! If what Skull said was true... I'm doomed! I'm going to be experimented on! I'm- Tsuna's rambling train of thoughts was cut off when Verde made 'tsk tsk' noises.

"Don't worry, you won't die yet. Not by the bullet or my hands, if that was what you were thinking." Sitting down, he grabbed a pair of scissors on the table and snipped away the cloth of his pants at the wound. "Hm, not too bad. Reborn's shot is as clean as usual."

... Why is he talking like that at a time like this?!

"This shouldn't hurt too bad... I think, since it hasn't been tested yet."

... Skull-nii! Fong-nii! Save me!

"I invented this a while ago to make extracting bullets easier instead of using tweezers to dig the bullet out. This method is much less messy." Verde proudly said, holding up a small device, hovering it above the wound. A pale green light flashed onto the skin around the wound and Tsuna could feel it go numb. Suddenly, he felt and saw the bullet move out and eventually float out of his leg and sticking to the device with a soft 'clink'.

Ew... Tsuna thought, scrunching his face. That looks gross.

"It works! Of course, since I invented it." Verde said, examining the bullet. He soon started to stitch up the wound was felt rather painless to Tsuna. "Done. I'm off. You can clean up by yourself." Verde stood up and headed for the door without a second thought.

"T-Thank you!..."

"Hm."

Tsuna sat up and swung his legs over the side of the bed and tried to stand. He wobbled a little at first, a slight pain on his wounded leg but he felt better after a few steps. Suddenly, the door burst open and a flash of purple ran towards him. "S-Skull-nii!"

"Tsuna! Are you okay?! Does it hurt?"

Tsuna shook his head. "It's not so bad now. Verde helped!"

Skull didn't look too convinced but let it go. As Tsuna was led out, he couldn't help but feel that something was up with Reborn. Since yesterday, Reborn looked distracted, as if he was thinking about something else. "Is something wrong with Reborn?" he asked when Fon appeared beside him.

"Reborn? I'm not too sure actually. He's always by himself and never really communicates with us."

This made Tsuna wonder a little. If Reborn liked to be alone, then why join the Arcobaleno? In fact, why did everyone join it if they were at odds with each other? "Uh... Fon? Why did you join the Arcobaleno?" Wow, I finally got the name right!

The martial artist thought for a moment, looking up at the off-white ceiling.

"I didn't want to be involved in the triads anymore," he started. "My family was one of the top triads in China, called Feng Long (風龍). Of course, that meant that I would have to inherit the triad one day and be the best..."

Tsuna watched Fon expectantly, engrossed in his tale. "What happened next?..."

"My cousin decided that he didn't want to stay in the underworld anymore so he left the country for somewhere else. Everyone in the family was extremely displeased but since he wasn't the heir, they let the matter go after a few months but not before... Silencing him." Tsuna gulped at that.

"Because of his departure," Fon continued wearily, "I was forced to work and train twice as hard to be their so-called, 'perfect leader'. Eventually, things got out of hand and a triad war broke out."

A small gasp was heard from the brunet whose eyes widened. He didn't like war. He had read all about it in Reborn's lessons and felt extremely disgusted by all the mindless killings. Tsuna knew how ironic it was since he was living among killers as well but he could never bring himself to hate his new family. After all, he had seen a softer side to them and that was all that mattered.

"I don't like to kill unnecessarily and the last straw was when they needed me to kill all the children in one of weaker triads. I did not want to hurt the innocent and vulnerable children so I left Feng Long immediately, but not before hiding the children away in a safer place where they could grow up peacefully. There are consequences for people such as me but... I managed to escape them for now. I started travelling on my own and while on one of my trips in Italy, Luce found me and asked me if I could join her mafia organisation, the Arcobaleno. By that time, Reborn, Colonello, Lal, and Skull were there already... And that was how I came to the Arcobaleno."

"J-Just like that?... Doesn't the Arcobaleno kill too? Why would you want to join?"

Fon looked slightly surprised at the question but smiled as he ruffled Tsuna's hair. The martial artist knew that just as much but he couldn't assimilate into the normal society anymore. Not with the people who were after his head. Settling down might endanger him and those close to him. So what better way to have a somewhat relatively normal life and yet have justice then to join Luce? "Yes, but this is more of... A justice thing. You could say it's like poetic justice. We take down corrupted organisations and-"

"Fon! Can you come to my office for a while?- Oh Tsu-chan! Oh my! What happened to your leg?!" Luce made her way over to the child and inspected his bandaged leg. "... Reborn shot you?..."

A nod.

"He... I'm sure he didn't mean to... I'll talk with him later, okay?"

"I-It's not his fault, Luce-nee!" Tsuna quickly said. "He was a little distracted during training! I know he didn't mean to!"

Tsuna... Noticed? For a child, his sense of perception is above average... Fon thought to himself, staring at the worried child.

Luce just smiled and patted his shoulder. "Okay, but I still have to talk to him. Why not you go rest and play with Skull for a bit, Tsu-chan." she said gently, glancing up at Fon.

"I'll see you later, Tsuna-kun."

As Tsuna limped away, Luce's smile toned down. "How long do you think we can keep him away from the mafia?..."

Fon gave no answer and turned towards the window where the view was of a small pond. Ripples formed as leaves fell onto the surface. "I don't know. All I can say is that we can't protect him forever. We don't know anything about Tsuna either."

Luce nodded solemnly. "All I found out was that he's part Japanese, part Italian, albeit less of the latter. I can't track his parents or any of his relatives... And those nightmares that he had before...-"

"Well, his heritage might explain why he's here in Italy. Let's discuss this in your office. Walls have ears after all." Fon gently interrupted, a hand placed onto Luce's shoulder.

~~~~~~~.

Tsuna sighed as he made his way towards Skull's room. He was really enjoying his new life but he couldn't help but feel that something was still off. Suddenly, he bumped into something hard and when he looked up, he realised it was Mammon. Even though she was the shortest among the Arcobaleno, Tsuna only reached till her thighs.

"S-Sorry!" Tsuna exclaimed, bowing almost ninety degrees."I-I was just thinking and...-"

"Save it. I don't need to know." she replied curtly before walking off.

"M-Mammon-san," the child called out. "Why... Why do you hate me?..." he muttered sadly.

The illusionist paused in her step and turned around swiftly. "Hate? I don't hate you, but I don't like you either. You're just a brat."

"Then... How can I make you change your opinion of me?" the child asked innocently with a slight tilt of his head.

Mammon quirked an unseen brow and folded her arms. What the heck is that kid thinking? "I don't know. Probably nothing." she spat. The illusionist turned around and walked off, ignoring Tsuna.

The brunet let out a small huff before taking off after Mammon. "W-Wait for me!..."

"Stop following me!"

Tsuna continued to chase after her till he was by her side. "Mammon-san!"

The hooded Arcobaleno groaned and picked up her pace. Annoying little imp! "I said stop following me!"

"But I want to be friends with you!"

"Friends? There is no need for friends in the mafia!" she hissed. "No, I know what you're thinking; the Arcobaleno is merely a cover and to earn easy money for me. Now bug off." Seriously, this kid is... Just can't stand it...

Tsuna kept silent as he continued to follow Mammon. He had a feeling that the illusionist was just putting up a strong front but why? Soft footsteps pattered quickly down the corridor, trying to keep up with the floating illusionist.

"Don't you ever give up, brat?" Mammon finally spoke.

"Uhm, I try my best not to!" Tsuna answered with a bright smile. "Fon says we have to give it our all and Reborn says that giving up is not an option! Luce said we should put in our best effort in anything we do! Oh and Lal said half-assed work will not be tolerated!" Tsuna recited with an innocent smile, causing Mammon's brow to twitch.

"Well, you wanna know what I'm going to say? Give up when it's time to give up. Not everyone will see the effort you put in and not all will appreciate it."

The child frowned. "As long as you know it inside that you made effort, that's all that matters!"

"That's not the point! Such naïve thinking and being so goody-goody will only get you killed!" the illusionist growl, quickly floating away and leaving Tsuna behind.

"I'm surprised he even survived till today," Mammon muttered when the brat was out of sight. "Friends? Don't make me laugh. Who would want to be friends with people like us? Like me?" A hand went up to her face where tattoos of an inverted triangle were on each side of her cheeks.

"You haven't seen enough of the real world yet."


Ahhhh! It's been so long since I wrote anything! Please excuse me if the standard of my writing has dropped... If there are any errors, do point them out, constructive criticism is welcomed!

School has been so torturous till I barely had anytime to write and even when holidays have started, I realised that I lost my drive to write. *Cries* It pains me to know that my writing isn't fantastic.

Oh yes, thank you all who faved, alerted, and reviewed this story! It makes me so incredibly happy to see things like these flood my mail! Oh my gosh, 68 reviews! Squealing like crazy now. I think I've replied to all or majority of the registered reader's reviews! And to those anonymous reviewers, thank you!

P.S: I really can't wait for this plot to develop! I have big plans for Arcobaleno Parenting!