Title: 青蝶: Blue Butterfly
Summary: Two years ago, Allen Walker mysteriously died in his line of duty. Now, Kanda and Lavi were sent to investigate a strange phenomenon happening in several cities―dead Akuma, broken Innocence and the appearance of a silver-haired teen who might be the cause of it. The question is―was Allen really dead at that time? Yullen.
"The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.."―John Milton, Paradise Lost
Prologue: The Halted Time
He gasped and coughed hoarsely, blood escaping out of his lips and splattering on the ground. Another wave of pain struck his chest hardly, causing his legs to give way as he collapsed onto the grass patch that was leading to a silver lake up ahead. He couldn't stop himself from rolling forward as he clutched his red-stained shirt, desperate to stop the flow of blood which was flowing out uncontrollably. He let out a scream as his broken body crashed onto a tree, before he rolled towards the edge of the lake and finally stopped.
Blood continued to gash out. His senses were numbing fast, and his vision was blurring every second. Silver eyes opened halfway as he breathed with difficulty, trying to get as much oxygen as possible. He gripped on his broken right arm which no longer had any feeling and forced himself to shift his body upright. When the pain finally went away, he let out a sigh, facing the night sky above.
"The stars are beautiful..." He murmured. How long had it been since he saw this breath-taking night view like this? Once in a while, he, Lenalee and Lavi would go to the rooftop of the Black Order to watch the twinkling stars and chat till early morning. The memory might be hazy, but it was still clear in his head, proving that it really existed. Now, he couldn't even remember the times when he could sit down with his friends and have a good chat.
Allen coughed, feeling his energy seeping out of his body fast. It was quiet here, with no one around except him. He really wanted to move on and get away from here before the enemies found out, but he realised that he could no longer move. His Noah powers was slowly repairing his body, but he wasn't even sure whether he could make it back alive.
Silver eyes widened as he covered his mouth and coughed, and a few minutes later, blood slowly trickled between his fingers and trailed down his arms. His head was starting to feel dizzy, and coldness began to invade his body, bringing his temperature down drastically. He swallowed the dry blood down his throat as he breathed through his parted lips, before he peered up at the night sky again.
He wondered why he was thinking of that swordsman - the man whom he hated and yearned at the same time.
"I don't promise you anything, Moyashi."
Till now, he was still trying to get to know Kanda, even though they would end up fighting or quarreling. Each time they exchanged blows, each time they called each other names and threw sarcastic remarks that made the both of them seemed even more childish, he could feel that the relationship between the two of them was closer than before. He knew that Kanda felt the same as well, just that he did not want to talk about it. Though it wasn't showing much result, this was how the both of them communicated and understanding each other.
At first, Kanda rejected him immediately and declared not wanting to be acquainted with someone like him. He hated doing missions with him, and did not even care when he was attacked by the Akuma.
Gradually, he began to acknowledge his existence. Kanda still did not give a damn about him, but at least he began to accommodate with him during missions instead of leaving him behind. His words were less nasty, and their conversation was gradually turning better. At that time, he realised that talking with Kanda wasn't as difficult as he thought to be. That bastard was just too stubborn to admit.
One day, he was attacked by a level four Akuma and was critically injured, with a large gash at his chest and broken arms and ribs. They were surrounded, and obviously at a clear disadvantage. Normally, someone would have to be the decoy as the other would take the Innocence and deliver it safely to the Black Order. Since he was wounded, he told Kanda to go first while he would catch up later. He thought Kanda would really leave, but to his astonishment, the raven-haired Exorcist berated him on the spot.
"Do not underestimate me, Moyashi. Such puny Akuma will not defeat me."
Allen coughed out blood, his vision darkening fast as he felt his heart beating its last moments. He slowly drew his breath, gazing at the stars hanging at the night sky.
Suddenly, a blue butterfly slowly fluttered past his eyes.
Somehow, as he was surrounded by darkness and emptiness which were about to claim him, it was the only thing that brought out the tiny shard of hope that he might be able to live―able to return back to his home and his friends and family. That image was so tempting that he almost believed it―until that particular second when excruciating pain attacked his body once again and he coughed out the thick crimson liquid for the last time that he knew his death was near. Tears slowly fell from his eyes uncontrollably, even though he reminded himself that men don't shed tears. He suddenly wanted to live once more, to do the things he wanted to do, to go back to those enjoyable days he had with his friends and family...
...to get a chance to fulfill the promise he made with Kanda. But...
...it was already impossible.
"Blue...butterfly..." He slowly reached out for the blue butterfly which was flying away, his eyes gradually closed as darkness finally swallowed him whole. The tip of his bloody finger brushed past the edge of the soft blue wings, before the arm slowly fell onto the ground with a hollow thud.
Sapphire eyes widened in horror as Kanda stiffened in his position, unable to move all of a sudden.
"What are you doing, Yuu-chan?" Lavi yelled as he jumped in front of him and kicked a level-three Akuma out of the way. The bookman junior turned to the raven-haired swordman who was still staring ahead in a daze. He slowly looked down at his black sword dripping with blood, before he turned and stared at Lavi with a blank expression. He couldn't explain what he felt at that particular second, but it didn't seem to be good news.
"I told you to call me by that name!" He snapped, slashing down four Akumas at one go. He looked at the energetic redhead who was hopping around the ground, dodging the attacks as he held up his enlarged hammer and swung it as hard as he could, sending most of the monsters flying as they screeched loudly in the darkness, before silence settled in. The two Exorcists walked along the dirty road, checking whether there was more enemies around the vicinity.
"Where are the others?" Kanda asked, seeing his black golem hovering to him.
"Hmm? You mean Lenalee, Krory-kins and Chouji-chan? I think they are at the west, just a few metres from our location," Lavi answered with a grin. Kanda just frowned, wondering when that redhead was going to stop that senseless naming he gave to the Exorcists. But then again, why should he even be bothered by this? He sheathed his sword into the hilt, looking up at the sky. The only thing that was worth seeing was the setting of the sun. The light-orange rays dispersed into different directions, colouring up the pale sky that had once rained an hour ago.
It seemed that their jobs were finally done.
"Let's go back to the Order," Kanda said, turning back as he headed for the exit of the building which was mostly in scrambles and ruins. As they tracked out into the open, A gust of warm breeze suddenly went straight to their faces. He shut his eyes, his lips forming a thin line as he tilted slightly to the left, feeling bits of sand scratching his cheeks slightly. After a minute, it cleared, and he opened his eyes again, seeing the destroyed bits and piles of rotten bodies all over the place. Sapphire eyes narrowed.
"Should we contact the others to see how they are doing?" Lavi asked, peering at the raven-haired Exorcist with a curious gaze. Kanda brushed those hazy thoughts off his head and turned away.
"Che. They will return once they finish their work. If you want to stay here, do what you want. I'm going back first."
"Are you sure? They might need some assistance. Of course, we don't need since we have you and a genius like me!" Lavi piped up as he gleamed in happiness at his own praise. Kanda rolled his eyes in slight exaggeration. Frankly, he was extremely surprised that Lavi did not even flinch when he was saying that lie. He snorted in slight disdain. He was surely not going to follow him back to the Order, or else he would have turned into a fool like him.
"No matter what you say, I'm going back first." Kanda signalled Lavi to throw the Innocence over to him. Lavi just gave a slight pout at his cold answer, before he took it out and tossed it over to him. Catching it by his hand, Kanda slipped it into his pockets and turned around, walking towards the north. He could smell the heavy stench of corpses from the wind blowing towards his face. It seemed that Lenalee and the others would be finishing as well.
"Are you sure you are not joining us later, Yuu? We might be eating Japanese food later! You know, Japanese food! Soba!" Lavi shouted from behind.
"Shut up, rabbit. I am in no mood to think of food, unlike you," Kanda grunted in reply as he walked along the trail that would lead him back to the entrance of the town. Delivering the Innocence back to the Order wasn't the only reason why he wanted to return quickly. There was something that was slightly off - he couldn't describe it. Enemies had been all eliminated, but he just couldn't shake off this bad feeling.
"Exorcist Kanda Yuu! Thanks for the hard work!" He turned and saw a small group of Finders who was still analysing the whole place and situation. It was still as irritating when he had to hear the same words from their mouths.
"Are you going back to the Black Order now, Sir Kanda?"
"Yeah. The Innocence is secured," He replied. They nodded their heads in understanding.
"I have already contacted Lenalee-san and the rest. They have finished and is coming back. No reinforcements from the enemy as yet!" One of the Finders spoke out. Kanda nodded his head as he understood. It shouldn't be a problem for the three of them. Seriously, this mission was damn too easy. He should have gone by himself.
"All of you can go back when everything is settled here."
"Yes!" They shouted and saluted as they went off, continuing their work. Kanda brushed off the strands of hair from his face, before he turned and continued his way back to the train station.
Suddenly, something flashed brightly in front of his eyes for a second. Sapphire eyes widened in astonishment, and as he recovered, he realised that he was falling forward, his knees approaching the ground. He let out a gasp as he hurled his hands forward, stopping himself before he collapsed. Kanda winced, his fingers twitching as pain started hammering on his head for no reason.
"Sir Kanda!" Finders shouted as they ran towards him to check whether he was alright. The swordsman would usually refuse their help due to his pride, but this time, he was too stunned and shocked by this that he wasn't even bothered by it. He felt his head as he glanced towards the south, sensing that something was very wrong. He hadn't felt this worked up before, and he had no idea why.
"What!" They turned to see a Finder speaking to their communication system. Apparently, he wasn't very pleased in hearing the news that was spoken to him.
"What happened, Tupp?" One Finder asked him. He just stared at him silently with a frown, before he turned away and continued with the conversation over the communication system. Kanda just glanced at him in silence, wondering what had happened, but he knew it wouldn't be good.
"Bad news, Sir Kanda!" He finally spoke out when he finished the conversation. Kanda looked up at him.
"What?" The Finder swallowed in nervousness and took a deep breath, before he continued.
"The Finder following Sir Walker has just contacted me!"
Kanda frowned, his lips forming a thin line.
"Apparently, he has lost contact with him! He is now tracking down his whereabouts!" Sapphire eyes slowly widened in shock.
"What...did you just say?"
"According to the situation, Sir Walker was fighting with an Akuma with unknown powers. Somehow, they were fighting so quickly that he couldn't keep up with their pace..."
"What is the level of the Akuma?" Kanda questioned.
"It should be...Level Four." His eyes narrowed. Why would a level four Akuma appear here all of a sudden? As far as he knew, Level Fours were very rare and they mostly situated around Edo, never stepping out of the area unless necessary. He hadn't expected that the Millennium Earl would risk himself to release them, apart from the incident at the Order when the Akumas merged themselves to evolve into a Level Four.
"Where is he now?" Kanda demanded.
"Around the South, near Bradley Town!" The Finder said as he pointed the direction. Kanda sprinted down the path, cursing under his breath. Why must it always be that dumb beansprout giving him endless trouble? He should have gone with Lenalee and the rest if he was this weak, but Kanda doubted that was the case. It was...probably that they met the Akuma on their way and Allen chose to stay back and fight it while the others moved ahead, even though...the outcome wouldn't be a good one.
What a fool.
He looked around the ruins, desperately looking for a particular silver-haired teen who might reduce into something unrecognisable. Apart from the remains of the Akumas and a few of the Finders, there was nothing that told him that Allen was here. Kanda kicked away a debris which was blocking his path as he leaped onto a quarter of the collapsed stone building, staring into the dimmed surroundings shaded with darkness. The Finder said he was around this area, yet he couldn't find a single soul here!
"Where are you, beansprout!" His voice echoed loudly in the distance.
Suddenly, a blue butterfly sailed across his eyes. Everything just halted instantly, all his focus onto this creature which seemed so insignificant in this large world.
Sapphire eyes widened. The blue butterfly flew out of his vision as it disappeared into the sky. Out of a sudden, his feet began to move as though he knew where to go - where to find that beansprout. Kanda jumped across a pillar and passed by some ruins, before he came by a place which was barely untouched even after such an uproar a few hours ago. He gradually slowed down into a brisk walk, his eyes scanning around for any suspicious figure. As he reached a lake, he finally saw someone lying on the grass. He slowly approached, his eyes gradually widened in horror at the state the silver-haired teen was in.
"Moyashi! Oi, can you hear me? Moyashi!" Kanda shouted as he knelt down and shook his shoulders. That stupid brat was so pale―no, he was beyond alive. His torn body soaked with blood was so cold that the feeling stung him. His lips was totally white. Kanda touched his neck, his heart pounding hard at his chest when he found no pulse beneath his skin.
"O-Oi..." His voice turned shaky. He couldn't shake off this bad feeling.
What joke is this?
"Oi, Moyashi..." Kanda yelled as he shook Allen roughly. Silver strands of his hair just brushed past his face, before falling to the sides lightly. There was no response from him.
"Don't give me this bullshit! What did you do just now? Why are you like this? Why aren't you responding?" Kanda seethed in rage as he grabbed his collar and pulled him towards his face, shaking him hardly.
Allen's body swayed heavily, and his face slowly drooped to the side, showing no reaction at all. Sapphire eyes went wide in shock as the reality slowly sank in. He slowly loosened his grip as he lowered Allen onto his lap. The raven-haired swordsman covered his face for a moment, his body started trembling out of its own accord. He had a feeling that this midget would be injured, but he had...never expected this to happen.
He had never expected Allen to be dead.
"Why..." His voice trailed off. A gush of wind sailed across the ground as dirt and dust was brought up into the moving air.
"Why did you break the promise?"
"Until this holy war ends, until this bloodshed ceases and the world becomes peaceful again, we will not die, Kanda. You will not die. Lenalee will not die. Lavi will not die."
"What about you?"
"I...will definitely not die. Not until I walk down this path I chose."
Kanda buried his face onto the small chest of Allen as he breathed in his faint scent. That particular scent of his was slowly fading away, disappearing forever. His expression hardened, yet that excruciating pain was still there, and before he realised it, tears escaped out of that pair of empty sapphire eyes, streaming down his face.
The blue butterfly continued to flutter as it stopped at the tip of the flower petal, before the wings slowly stopped moving.
A/N: As I am doing the other stories, I thought of putting this up for a change. It is another old story inside my laptop, and I decide to post it here to see if it interests you readers. Meanwhile, I am trying to finish the chapters for Rewind and Colourful Moments as fast as possible, so bear with me for a while longer!
Please review and tell me your opinions on this chapter! Everything is appreciated :)