Full-size cover pic here: (delete the _ to see)

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I took two existing pictures (one of Stein and one of Kid) and combined them. I also made them look really grotesque!

Chapter 1 cover pic: (I didn't draw this but added some things to it like the white rings and line, and of course the text)

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And the alternate cover pic here:

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I altered Kid's eye to align it with my story's plot. I also filled in his pupil and made it black.

This story takes place some time after the anime, when no one has to worry about the threat of a new Kishin for a while. This also takes place before the part in the manga where Kid succumbs to Madness, so this is an alternate version of what ends up happening later on.

Listening to/watching this awesome MedusaxStein AMV while I type... ht_tp:_/_/_www._repeatmyvids._com_/_watch?v=9EtE03oS-rU_&kmdom=_youtube

-x-

Professor Stein hastily shuffled around his laboratory, combining several liquids together until they turned into a bright, glowing green color after he mixed them with a stirring rod. The stark, blindingly-white light in the basement gleamed across Stein's glasses, obscuring his eyes as he tilted his head back and grinned with ire amusement. He looked haunted as he held his hands up in the air, back trembling with excitement when he bent backward and laughed like a madman.

"I did it! I finally did it! If it wasn't for you and your suffering, I never would get better! Thank you, so much! Ahahahaa!"

Slowly, Stein came out of his delerium and his eyes traveled to the wide beaker containing the miracle cure. He drew some of it into a syringe, making sure there were no air bubbles present, then he immediately stabbed himself in the arm with it, knowing the exact location of his most-used veins by heart. He was a doctor. A mad doctor. And he had a certain young Grim Reaper to thank for giving him the ability to be sane again, as fleeting and temporary as it may be...

-x-

Death the Kid was laying on his back, in a red pool. He felt himself drifting in and out of consciousness, eyes falling shut and opening again in differing intervals. The water would drain away into nothingness, only to fill back up again and drain again endlessly. He didn't know where one day ended and night began, one hour passing by or twenty-four hours. It seemed like a truly endless process, especially now. He didn't mind it though, as his body and soul bore itself into a comfortable stasis, slipping away into a semi-conscious slumber.

This particular time, his hands floated above the water on the surface, his head underwater except for his nose, eyes seeing nothing since they were closed. He heard a dull voice, the sounds echoing unrecognizably below the water. All he could tell was it was a man's voice.

Kid's hands twitched, finally becoming aware again. They slipped under the red wine-laced water, bubbles from his moving hands stirring up a pink froth as his fingers found chains wrapping around his torso and legs. He moved his fingers up to his neck, feeling how tightly he was bound to the back of the tub. He felt small waves starting to splash against his thighs and wisp his hair around in the water. Pale, ghostly hands maneuvered around the chains, massaging whatever exposed bits of flesh they could as they moved up his legs, down his arms and finally up his chest. Kid shivered and breathed bubbles out of his mouth, furrowing his brow as he struggled to open his eyes.

Suddenly the hands clasped around Kid's face and jerked his head up out of the water. Kid's mouth opened and he sputtered, water flowing out of his mouth while he accidentally swallowed some of it.

"Did it work this time? How do you feel?" Two thumbs moved across Kid's eyelids, the high concentration of alcohol on them burning his eyes. With slow, groggy difficulty, Kid opened them unevenly. He stared at the doctor in a blurred haze, revealing a new dark third ring in his irises. The scarred figure in front of him smiled, eyes hidden behind the white light bouncing off his eyeglasses.

"Perfect. I have succeeded." The figure came closer to him, joining him in the water, laying over him, face a few centimeters away from his. The sudden movement made Kid's body sway back and forth in the water. "You have now synchronized with my Madness. You've progressed wonderfully in these past few days." The figure licked up the side of Kid's face, gleefully lapping up the excess fluids on the test subject's cheek that hadn't dripped off his face yet. He soon became drunk as he greedily drank from the boy's unblemished body, the mad doctor raking his lusted eyes over pure flesh, pulling Kid's face as far out of the water as the chains would allow.

He licked down his neck before turning around and pressing Kid's legs tightly against the sides of the tub as far out of the water as possible. He delicately licked across the sides of Kid's creamy thighs in well-worn patterns as he caressed the undersides of them at the same time, knowing full-well how this would affect the young Reaper below him. Just as planned and expected- the doctor grinned devilishly ear-to-ear as he felt movement beneath the water. Kid's head tilted back and fell mostly under the water again, his mouth wide and breathless. His eyes burned again, becoming momentarily sightless when they made direct contact with the water. A few seconds later his head floated back up to the surface, only his ears and hair continuing to be submerged.

The simple sound the boy emitted was sensuous music to the doctor's ears, the only sound he heard him speak for the last several hours. It drove the doctor into an ecstasy. He turned around again to face Kid, his hands knowingly sliding up the boy's legs and stopping short of his hips. He grinned lecherously, leaning down over him, pushing Kid's hips farther underwater, loving the sight of the way the test subject's body reacted to his touches. The doctor's half-lidded eyes focused on Kid's lips, taking in the sight of the five black stitches that appeared and drew their way down Kid's upper lip, over his bottom lip, and ended at the bottom of his chin. His mouth was sewn shut. It was a shame really, to not be able to hear the boy's cries anymore. Oh well, no matter.

The doctor's eyes traveled farther up still to Kid's eyes, absorbing the purple glow added to the new burnt gold third ring. "I am amazed at your progress, Kid. Not even Spirit came this far without breaking." Kid's eyes slightly moved down instead of staring at the ceiling, otherwise motionless. He looked right at his captor, expression dark and lost in a sea of emotions the doctor's soul linked to his through their Chain Resonance.

"Aren't you pleased at your success? I know I am... I'm proud of you." The bespectacled man lifted his head up and kissed the top of Kid's, smoothing out the boy's drenched hair with a hand as he did so.

"Let me reward you..." Then his hands reached down into the water, pulling Kid's hips up as Stein's head moved lower and lower, lips opening, coming to play with...

-x-

Kid's pencil lead snapped and his eyes widened. A blush spread across his whole face and he coughed to clear his throat, feeling highly uncomfortable. He was thankful Patty didn't notice or question his demeanor when she leaned over him, staring at his paper in front of them on the desk in the classroom. She had a stupid grin on her face, yelling "Giraffe~! Giraffe!" in a cute voice, coloring along Kid's random scribbles with a yellow crayon. Her head was underneath Kid's, the hair from the back of her head tickling against his neck. He couldn't help but inhale the scent of the shampoo she used that morning. It's not like he wanted to, she was right there, but she didn't notice as her arm flew all across his paper. He wasn't going to turn it in anyway; he couldn't write his name perfectly. Again.

Kid closed his eyes. Strawberries. His mind flew to a different time and place not in the present. Presents. Candy. Chocolate. Chocolate-covered strawberries. Stein's smile, holding them out to him. Kid's body covered in melting chocolate, drizzling down his body as he fell into a pool of intoxicatingly warm, pink water filled with wine. Floating in strawberries.

Kid's eyes flew open and that certain ring of gold drew its way around Kid's eyes, the new middle ring growing dull and dark before finally encasing itself in that purple hazy glow. His gaze lowered to offset the possibility of questioning eyes happening his way.

-x-

"...And that concludes the careful dissection of the once-endangered Wood Stork species." Stein looked up from the bloody bird splayed across his desk and stared right at Kid as Kid blushed and cleared his throat. Kid didn't notice. Stein smiled, his usual creepily-entertained grin cracking his lips apart and making him seem demonic. That wasn't unusual for Stein. But Kid being so distraught and nervous was.

"What do you mean once-endangered, Professor Stein?" Tsubaki asked, raising her hand in the air. She sat a row directly behind and above Kid. Stein looked up at her; the seat to her left was empty once again, as usual. One of these days Stein would teach Black Star what happens when he skips class so often...

Stein put his scalpels down on the desk.

"Well, Tsubaki, you may not have realized this, but the wood stork species is now extinct."

Tsubaki's hand wilted in the air and her eyes widened as the rest of the class started yelling in confused furor.

"A-are you serious, Professor Stein?"

He waited a few tortuous seconds to reply, instead scanning his eyes over all the students that were suddenly creating chaos. He saw how their soul wavelengths suddenly went erratic and crazy with fright and worry, not a single rational thought present in their minds.

Stein enjoyed the sight.

"Well, actually, there is about five... thousand left in the wild." Stein pushed his chair back and it rolled into the chalkboard. He kicked his feet up on the desk, then moved his head and arms back behind him. He linked his hands together by way of his fingers and rested the back of his head against his palms, while the backs of his hands touched the chalkboard. The front wheels of the chair quickly lifted up in the air. It was only a matter of time before he fell over. A very, very short amount of time.

"How could you... how could you say that? I really thought that was the last bird alive!" Tsubaki yelled, sounding on the verge of crying. Stein glanced at her, light angling off of one of the lenses of his glasses. A few seconds later she put her face in her hands and ran down the stairs and out of the room crying. Stein's eyebrows rose as he watched her leave.

"Maka, can you make sure she turns in her assignment tomorrow?" Maka nodded from the left side of the room.

And then Stein's chair collapsed and he fell on his ass.

-x-

A few notes, I don't know for sure if the students have assigned seats in class, so I just put them wherever.

Tsubaki was acting a bit out of character... or maybe not? I thought it would be funny for her to do that XD

This chapter is double the size of what I usually write, mostly because I had to include the classroom scene where I can't focus only on Stein and Kid. Hopefully these parts are as interesting as the rest of the story and make it more realistic :)

Also, about the stitches on Kid's mouth- I know that in the manga they aren't exactly stitches because he can still talk, but my story is taking that idea in a different direction so bear with me~

Read and review, guys! I want to see if it's worth continuing this story. Even anonymous reviews will be accepted! So say whatever you want 8D