I do not own Code Geass. Any parts that resemble the Anime or Manga are most likely from it.
Lelouch smiled inwardly as he watched Zero appear in the middle of the road to the cries of the crowd. Zero stood still for a moment before beginning to run towards him, his cloak flowing around him, as athletic and graceful as only Suzaku could be.
And freakish, Lelouch mused, as he stood up to watch Suzaku outrun gunfire from the Knightmares leading his procession.
It only took him seconds to reach the Knightmares and vault past them, moving ever closer to the Demon Emperor. Lelouch's loyal knight, Jeremiah Gottwald, extended the blade that was hidden in his cyborg arm, leapt down from his perch beside Schneizel and ran to meet him.
"Don't shoot!" Jeremiah cried, "I'll deal with him!"
Suzaku didn't even slow, needing only a single step on Jeremiah's shoulder to get past him and Schneizel, another to land in front of Nunnally and one final step to stand in front of the Emperor.
No one saw the slight smile on Jeremiah's face, as they were all focussed on Zero standing before the 99th Emperor, the Demon Emperor.
Gasps rang out amongst the cries of 'Zero!' as he drew his sword, knocking the pistol Lelouch had drawn out of his hand and levelling his sword at the Demon Emperor's chest.
Moments later the crowd was silenced as Zero's sword slipped easily through the Emperor's chest and Lelouch slumped against him. Over Suzaku's shoulder he could see Kallen, tears streaming down her face as she cried out for Zero to stop.
'She doesn't hate me' he thought, his eyes turning to see Tianzi looking away, whilst Tohdoh and Xingke looked on open mouthed, 'That's good, although she'll probably kill me again when she finds out...'
It hurt more than Lelouch thought it would, being impaled through the heart, and its sudden withdrawal and his tumble down the platform certainly didn't help matters.
Nunnally's tears hurt more though, as she realised what Lelouch had been planning. He would have revealed all of his plans before hand but her reactions had to be realistic. He just hoped she would forgive him when she found out, as he gasped out his last words to her cries for her brother.
"I'm ... going to ... destroy ... the world ... and recre-"
The crowd scattered as Cornelia led her forces to release the Emperor's prisoners. Jeremiah, a blank expression on his face, moved to stand over his Lord's body, Nunnally still crying over it. People were crying in happiness that the Demon was dead, all nationality's embracing each other and chants of 'Zero! Zero! Zero!' echoed around the procession.
Zero held Nunnally as Jeremiah gently picked up Lelouch's body and followed Zero as the crowd moved out of his way, their joyous shouts silenced as the Emperor's body was carried past them, replaced by shudders, averted eyes and backwards steps.
They would forever be benefitted by Zero Requiem, but they would never, could never, be told of it.
Less than half a day after Lelouch's death the few Black Knights who had understood Lelouch's final plan and those others who had cared stood in front of his pyre and watched as his body burned and became ash.
Lloyd Asplund and Cécile Croomy stood together, Cécile leaning on Lloyd as both of them turned and left the room, Lelouch's body burning behind them. They were some of the first to go, and with them so followed most of the others, Ohgi, Kaguya, Everyone. All but seven.
Tohdoh and Xingke stayed almost until the end, waiting until there were only bones left.
Nunnally sat in her wheelchair desperately trying to hold back her tears, Sayako stood behind her, a supporting hand on her shoulder. She was the Empress now, after all none could blame any of her brother's crimes on her when she lay in chains at the foot of his throne.
Kallen stood alone, tears streaming down her face as she watched the body of the man she loved burn. She left eventually, her and Nunnally desperately clutching each other's hands as Sayako wheeled Nunnally out.
Eventually the only two left were Zero and Jeremiah and they stood there in silence as the pyre burnt down leaving nothing but ash. They waited through the night, waited and watched, alone in their thoughts until the pile of ash shuddered.
Lelouch stood up, rising out of the pile of ash like a pale phantom, coughing and brushing the ash from his skin.
"Well, that stung."
Minutes later the three of them were stood within the abandoned subways under Tokyo, far away from prying eyes and listening ears. Jeremiah had changed into a new set of clothes, his old ones stained with blood, whilst Suzaku was back in his Knight of Zero uniform and Lelouch in Zero's clothes and cloak.
"It seems like it worked then," Suzaku started, the sword he had used to kill Lelouch in his hands, "Taking Charles and V.V.'s code?"
"I'm stood here, am I not Suzaku?" Lelouch replied, raising his eyebrow slightly.
"I suppose you are..." Suzaku whispered to himself, "Are we... are we going to the next phase?"
"Do you still want to?" Lelouch asked, regret evident in his voice.
"...Yes." Suzaku murmured.
"You were always the better of the two us," Lelouch mused as he turned to Jeremiah, "...Do it."
"Yes your Highness." A moment later and Jeremiah's left eye flashed blue removing the Geass that Lelouch had placed upon Suzaku.
The order to live.
"Thank you," he whispered as he drew the sword and drove it through his own body, forcing his last breath with it, "I'm coming Euphemia..."
Lelouch watched as his best friend crumpled over on himself, finally reaching the death he so desperately sought.
"His grave is at the Kururagi Shrine is it not Jeremiah?" Lelouch asked, not looking away from the body of his friend.
"Take him there," Lelouch whispered, "His empty grave is a loose end."
"Yes Sir," Jeremiah replied as he lifted Suzaku's body, blooding his clothes again as he walked away into the gloom before pausing, "You're ... not coming your Majesty?"
"No," Lelouch stated as he lifted Zero's mask, "I have a world to oversee. And you had better start referring to me as Zero again."
Zero had an office in Britannia, something that would have been unthinkable only two days beforehand. Or it would have been, had Lelouch not set this office up himself months ago and swept it for bugs only moments before.
'How quickly the world changes' Lelouch mused beneath his mask as he watched the highest echelons of the worlds new government file into his office.
"Take of the Mask Suzaku!" Tamaki spat, "We all know it's you, you're the only person who could possibly move like that!"
Lelouch smiled under his mask, even as Kallen clenched her fists, Tamaki had played his part to perfection, removing any doubt that it could be anyone else behind the mask.
"I shall never remove this mask," he lied, his voice coming out synthesised as he knew it would, "Not even when I die.
And I believe we had business to attend to, with the death of the Demon Emperor..."
Kallen stared at Zero desperately trying to hold back her tears. No matter how much he looked like him, how much that voice reminded her of him, this wasn't her Zero.
Her Zero was dead.
Her King was gone.
She wasn't, couldn't, pay attention to him, not when it still hurt so much to look at him, at that mask and know it wasn't him behind it.
She glanced at Nunnal- at the Empress and noted that she was the same, hands clutching her dress and eyes turned downwards.
"...and I believe that's all we have to discuss today, so I won't keep you any longer. Except the Empress and Captain Kōzuki, I believe I owe you ... an apology."
She watched as they all stepped out, believing that Zero would apologies to the Empress for killing her beloved brother, although why Kallen would be staying only a few knew, and they sent her pitying glances.
Zero waited until the door was closed again before beginning.
"This room is completely soundproof and there are no bugs listening or cameras watching," He began, "So you don't have to worry about anyone finding-"
That was as far as he got before Kallen exploded.
"Shut up Suzaku! He's gone! Gone, and it's all your fault!" she screamed, her tears pouring out before she collapsed to her knees next to Nunnally, who grasped her hand in her own and let her own tears out, "He ... he left me, left me and Nunnally behind, and ... and I can't hate him for it ... because he did it all for us! To give us a better world..."
"But it's not a better world," Nunnally whispered, "not without him, without Lelouc-"
She choked herself off then, barely able to say his name.
"May I finish?" Zero said, and Kallen glared at him through tearful eyes, "I owe you an apology, but it had to appear realistic..."
Here his hands went up to his mask and carefully removed it, revealing the face of Lelouch Vi Britannia to the world.
"You were the only two people who care who they might have been paying attention to."
"You..." Kallen started, as she stood up and slowly laid a shaking hand on Lelouch's face whilst Nunnally's eyes narrowed in momentary anger, "You Magnificent Bastard..."
She slapped him them once, twice, thrice, and damn was she strong. But he wouldn't have her any other way.
Then she grabbed him by the ears and shoved her tongue down his throat, desperately trying to prove to herself that this was real.
Lelouch returned the kiss, or at least tried to, and gently wrapped his arms around her, pulling her body flush to his as her arms slid around the back of his neck.
There were broken apart by Nunnally's cough, her face bright red and her eyes averted. Kallen pushed him away and tried to hide her blushing face in her hands as she tried to work out what she was supposed to be feeling.
"But... we saw you die, we cremated your body, how did you..." Nunnally asked as she stretched her hands out towards him.
"Do you want the truth or a comforting lie?" he replied, as he knelt down in front of her and took her hands in his own, like he had done so many times before, back at Ashford Academy.
"The truth," Nunnally said after a glance at Kallen, who nodded in agreement.
"Yes, you did."
"That doesn't explain how you survived brother..." Nunnally began, before Lelouch continued.
"Once a Geass has fully matured the user may take a Code to replace it, and thus gain immortality," he said wearily, "I have a couple of Codes, Charles' and V.V.'s, plus the others they collected. Possession of a Code also grants the ability to give others Geass and immunity from them."
"So you had Suzaku fake his death to become Zero," Nunnally summarised, shivering at the reminder of the powers of Geass, "And then had him kill you, to fake your death, so you could return to being Zero. So, where's Suzaku now?"
"He held up his end of the bargain, to impersonate Zero and kill me," Lelouch replied sadly, "And I held up my end, to release him from the Geass I had him under and allow him to die."
"Yeah... he's gone."
"You're immortal..." Kallen started softly, tears creeping into her eyes once more, "But, what about me... You're leaving me behind again..."
"About that Kallen," Lelouch began with a smile, "Would you like to make a contract?"