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[WChaos fanfic] The Nature of All Things Chapter 2

A/N : crossingcrossroads wrote this yo~!

Chapter 2

The light was becoming dim as day turned to night. All was silent but the sound of crunching.
“How much further!”

Peace didn’t get irritated easily, but when it came to Nanashi today, she was quickly making herself extendable. Perhaps it’s been a couple of hours since their escape, and they’ve been walking through the forest to civilization ever since. Needless to say, the endless walking was getting on their nerves, making each and every one of them impatient.

An annoyed sigh escaped from her lips as Paru stopped to give her a warning look, “I don’t know, Nanashi… I’ve been there no more than you have.” With that, no one else spoke as the day grew darker, leaving them with barely enough light to make out a tent.

Paru walked toward it without hesitance, only to be stopped by Nanashi, “Stop, you don’t know who it could be… it could be one of them.” Paru shook her head as she walked slower to the tent, now heeding about what Nanashi said.

Peace took a careful, but quick look from where they were, spotting trails of string leading deeper into the forest. The cautionary that raised up in her head were not any where close to what Nanashi was afraid of as she patted Nanashi’s back, prompting the girl to follow the other girl quietly.

An abandoned tent, already old and dusty, was obviously their only way of survival for the night. Scattered around and on it were dry autumn leaves, a long time unused fire pit barely fit to make any dinner. Peace made the first move to look into the tent, sure to be careful of the worse. She sighed when she was met with nothing in the tent but a pack full of supplies, a lantern, and an oversized sleeping bag.

Without another thought, she took the lantern, pulling the backpack out for hopes there would be food left. She threw the backpack over to Nanashi, “Here, there should be some supplies in there. I’m going to gather some branches to burn.”

Behind her, she heard Paru instructing Nanashi exactly what to do, bringing Peace just a tiny sense of relief that this wasn’t a dream.

For a moment, Peace felt a pang of guilt. She pieced everything together already. An idiot as she was, she understood full well where their location was. She said her own prayers when she received and ate the prepared food that was made. The silence was deafening, but she supposed, it was necessary for the first night. The feeling of escape hasn’t completely sunk in yet, after all.

It was nightfall. Nanashi and Paru were asleep in the sleeping bag peacefully with her voluntary shift. Peace now had time to think and plan. She knew exactly where they were. Rumors were passed around in the prison, but she never really allowed herself to believe it.

‘Frankly,’ she thought, ‘it’s creepy.’

She sat in the unclear darkness, fire burnt out to avoid the seeking eyes of the prison. The tree she found refugee on for a bird’s point of view made things all the more easier. In the distance she tried her hardest to make out one who would be of danger to them.

She felt it was strange. Normally, she’d be more panicked and upset. Her mother had basically proclaimed that she hated her through her choice of action. She knew that more than just the government would go after them now. But guilt and sorrow had no space for her heart when survival and justice was her top priority.

Upon arrival, every person was hidden of their destination unless they held a special type of authority. The strings in the woods were no blind hint about location. If a prying eye were to look more carefully, conscious about their surroundings as she was, they would realize that this forest is more than just trees and dead leaves.

She grimaced. For years, she’d been living in a forest of the dead. Who they were, although unnecessary to her existence, were relative to the prison one way or another. Regretfully, she remembered the exact place where they “cleaned” and left her first target. She looked in its direction, feeling a tear of guilt again. She remembered how relentless she was forced to be. She especially remembered how good it was to hurt someone, and most of all she felt no guilt because her mother “approved” of it. She sat on her tree branch as guilt gnawed at her.

But she supposed… She’d have to live with the guilt.

The next morning, Paru woke up with a harsh groan. Her arm had a numbing pain, reminding her about the wound on her arm. She sat up slowly, mindful of the younger girl next to her. She patted Nanashi’s head softly before struggling out, staring at the cloudy and still-dawn sky. She curiously looked for Peace, finding her dozed off on a branch of a nearby tree.

She dug out of the bag found at the camp and looked for a first aid kit. She pulled some gauze, roller bandages, and a bottle of water with a clean cloth out. She poured an amount of water onto the cloth and undid the belt on her shoulder. She cleaned it carefully, hissing lightly when it directly touched the wound on her shoulder.

“Paru?” Peace said from the branch before jumping off and going to Paru’s side to help her, “You should have called me to help you.” She then inspected the things Paru used to clean her wound. “That’s no good! You have to use some antiseptic wipes to clean the wound better.”

With the said antiseptic wipes, Peace ripped the packet open and inspected her arm to see if it still bled. She smiled, “It’s stopped bleeding. Looks like stopping the blood flow was somewhat of a good idea, huh?”
She nodded in response. Paru watched as Peace cleaned the wound. Her arm flinched from the stingy feeling of the antiseptic touching her open skin. She watched as Peace absentmindedly redressed her wound. Inside, she sensed and understood how she felt.

“You know it’s okay to feel how you feel,” Paru said softly.

Peace smiled and scoffed, “Feel what?”

“I don’t know, you tell me.” Then an awkward silence.

“Hold still, I’m almost finished,” she said.

She watched Peace patch up the last of the redressing, making it nicely wrapped. Paru wondered how experienced Peace could actually be. Her hand touched Peace’s hand that was tracing the bandages of the wound. Peace looked at Paru, her eyes displaying a regretful silence. Paru’s other hand pulled Peace’s head towards her as she leaned into Peace, their foreheads touching.

Both of Peace’s hands clutched onto Paru’s hand on her arm as Paru smiled, “We’re right here if you need us, both Nanashi and I. There’s no need to hold anything in anymore.” Peace nodded before hiding her face into Paru’s shoulder.

“Fuck that shit! Bring me to that bitch!” A voice approaching the team screamed. “I’ll beat her until her annoying face breaks!”

Several cells away, Miyu struggled to see in her peripheral vision what was happening. Everyone knew all too well that it was Messi’s voice. Yagi was already glued to the bars, eager to get Messi back and beat the enemy into the crap that they were.

As Messi arrived in the hold of a group of men, she was perfectly well aside from bruising. The gate opened with a key turn and a yank, and she was quickly shoved into her pet as she entered. As quickly as she entered, she shot to the entrance again, slamming a fist against the key holder before he retreated.

“Fuck you!” she screamed as the last word. Messi punched the wall in anger, venting out short curses as she did.

Miyu attempted to approach her teammate first. She understood with her reaction, things did not go as planned. Instead, Yagi approached her, grabbing and holding onto the wrists of the smaller girl. She caressed the bruising hands, careful of the open, bleeding cuts, “What happened? Nothing gets you pissed more than being trapped or outsmarted.”

Messi relived the moment in her head, then spoke, “I’m going to kill her.”

Yagi was silent. No sound, no words.

But Miyu was the next to speak. Only she knew the full extent of what could have happened, “So they got you. You told them.”

Messi was ready to lash out at the girl to shut her up, but held back by Yagi and stopped by An’nin. When she finally stopped struggling, she finally calmed down.

Her fist clenched, she stood her ground, “Someone came in and acted like a weakling to me. She boosted my self-confidence and used it to taunt whatever information I had out of me.”

“So basically…” Miyu pieced things together, “They know about the data.”

Now morning, Nanashi’s bitterness of their current events was finally catching up to her. Somehow, Peace was relieved at the fact. She was especially glad that Nanashi knew it was too early to be loud, the low mutters better for her ears. A line of complaints paint a picture in the listener’s head, but the line that appeared most in the monologue of mutters was “Who the hell makes a prison in a freakin’ forest?”

Peace chuckled at the thought. Indeed, the prison was one of a kind for its location. Never before has a prison been created in a forest like this. Word about the place being a school was a simply off-base lie, created so deep into the forest that the only thing that would help navigate in and out of it was a map — a map that she still undeniably no longer had.

To put simply, the forest was created as a maze of death.

Peace understood that even if they saw the goal from the top, it would be even harder to find their way down without getting lost.

Paru stopped, pulling the two of them back. Her eyes seemed knowing and she spoke hostilely with hushed whisper. “Who is that?”

Brought out of her mind, Peace looked up in surprise. She knew they weren’t close enough to the prison to be caught, but to be found already was nearly impossible. A rouge couple emerged from an unmarked trail in ragged clothing, fashioned in a way that spoke screamed no more than “yankee!”

Peace cursed quietly, pulling Paru and Nanashi behind a tree hidden by bushes. The sound of quiet rustling around them helped them all identify that it was more than just two Yankees venturing the forest. By the sound of it, they were clearly trapped between the bush and the tree with the Yankees surrounding the area.

“Don’t move,” she mouthed. Though neither were experts on lip-reading, she understood as much.

Peace breathed in soft breaths, using a technique taught to her to remain calm whenever the time called on her missions. She signaled for silence between the three of them, knowing that being calm was the only solution to get them through. Her finger hovered above her lips.

Then it hit her. What if they were more than just some yankees? What if, by some chance, they were the enemy? What if they were cleaners?

She sat a bit conflicted. What ifs were what ifs. There was a probability that they were just as they seemed—yankees—but she needed to consider the worse case scenario.

She pulled on Nanashi’s sleeve softly, pointing at the hard drive in her hand. She gestured her to give it to her as she pulled out a swiss army knife she found at the camp. Nanashi tugged on her arm and hissed, “What are you doing? You can’t do that! We—“

“Quiet!” Peace said as Paru abruptly covered Nanashi’s mouth. The both of them could hear footsteps that retreated returning. However, Peace continued her small task and dug a hole under the surface and buried the hard drive. She carved and slashed at the tree it was buried under, a marking that would help them retain the object in the future. Then she placed a single small boulder at the foot of the tree.

It was suffocating to be put in the dark from the truth or what was real as her heart quickly paced with her deep but quick breaths. Then there was a pause. The two sides stood in silence. A hand emerged from the other side of the bush as she prepared an attack.

She jumped from her place, stabbing the hand immediately and attacking the first person she could jump at. She guided her body in quick and strict movements, disabling another who cried out in pain. Her legs helped her fly from one person to another, kicking them to the ground or giving them an uppercut. After the first person, she refrained from using the knife in her hands, avoiding unnecessary injury, or even worse, murder.

By this point, Paru had joined in the fight to fend against another who attempted to go past their leafy barrier. Her fist flew around one person, blocking against one hit. She elbowed the person in the abdomen. Her arm seemed to give a pulse, reminding her of her handicap as the previously knocked down yankee stood up and took a tight hold of her right arm. She made a sound that seemed like half a whimper and half a grunt. Another second passed as a knife was thrown into the yankee’s left shoulder as she was released.

Peace took long and deep breaths, pausing to process her actions. Despite a battle against five yankees, she stepped over to Paru, asking about her well-being as she checked her arm half way. Her second thought wasn’t Nanashi until she heard the small yelp of the fellow refugee being put under the knife she threw. The knife was impossibly close to her skin. Nanashi threw her head back to avoid the knife from touching her. Her voice came in a soft whimper, “P…eace… Paru… help…”

Finally the knife holder hissed in a strained voice, “I think I deserve to know who you all are.”

Peace and Paru stood there unable to help. Nanashi’s plead was as loud as day to them but they couldn’t do anything that would step out of line as long as the knife was at her throat. They were careful of where the knife was as it pressed closer to Nanashi, who emitted a small yelp. The cut that was created threatened to seep blood onto Nanashi’s uniform.

“Well?”

“I’m Paru. I’m the leader here,” she said without hesitance. “She’s Peace, my friend. I’d like that you would release our other friend so we’d be out of your hair. If you do that, we won’t be a bother to you anymore than we have been.”

Peace shook her head, looking at the consequences. She was sure that they wouldn’t be let go easily.

“I wonder how long it takes a neck to stop bleeding? She’d need medical treatment,” The yankee continued. As Peace looked at her carefully, she spotted a scar on her cheek. A part of her told her that she was very familiar to her even as her mind said differently. “Besides… attacking my team out of no where, hurting them, giving them wounds that would last a lifetime… I don’t feel you deserve to be let go so freely.”

Peace and Paru stayed quiet then. Before long, arms took hold of them, two yankees on either of their sides. Another held onto her hand tightly, evidently in pain because of the stab Peace made through her hand. Because of it, none of them were merciful of them as Paru made another small grunt, flinching her arm away.

The assumed leader who held Nanashi captive hit the yankee on Paru’s right, “Look at her shoulder. She’s hurt, you idiot. Don’t be so rough on the arm. We may be keeping them captive, but we’re not cruel.”
“Sorry, Yukko-san.”

“Welcome to the main room,” A girl in normal clothing said. Her hair was shoulder-length short with colored streaks in her hair that fit her nicely. A scar was barely visible on the skin of her wrist. Her arms were spread wide in a welcoming action, but her intentions said otherwise. Together, both team Mongoose and team Habu were gathered before her and another girl with similar clothing as the one who welcomed them. They were tied and handcuffed together behind their back and in a straight line. Only their two leaders were different as they were strapped to wheelchairs and rolled in, “Did you sleep well?”

No one answered to the girl. The other girl answered in place, “Well, it’s not like we expected an answer.” She was like the first girl, but with a boy-like cut, and her height significantly shorter than the other.
Miyu noticed Nobunaga had her eyes set on the stain on the floor of the room in disappointment. The both of them probably guessed what probably happened in the room the day before. Her eyes were pulled away as the first girl spoke again.

“I’m Akari. Call me Akari-sama,” said she.

“I’m Rika, but I go by Rikka,” the second girl said. “There’s a difference. Note that.”

“What business do you have with us?” An’nin said.

“Forget that, where’s that girl from yesterday?” Messi said as calm as did was, “I have some things to thank her for with my fists.”

“Wouldn’t you like to know?” Rikka said, ignoring the Messi’s outburst. She smiled, “Lucky for you, you’ll find out.”

Akari circled around the room, then turned suddenly with a gun in hand and made the motion to shoot, “Bang!” Everyone tensed by Akari’s trick, “Nantene.” She could see the annoyance in both Messi’s and Nantene’s eyes. They felt her taunting them. She smirked.

“Miyu, step forward,” Akari said, dropping the empty gun carelessly and walking towards the group. A guard that stood behind her pushed Miyu forward.

Immediately, she was kneed in the gut with insane strength. Miyu gasped at the impact done. Sounds of concern and lines of rage were issued by members of team Mongoose. Akari then gripped onto the collar of Miyu’s jumpsuit and pulled her face-to-face with her. Akari didn’t care about the prior damage Miyu had from the day before when they fought with a gang of guards, “How dare you betray the prison, you trash. You’ve caused trouble for us.”

“…I-I’m sorry,” Miyu said, “But I ca-can’t follow the prison’s orders anymore.”

“Figures,” Akari said, dropping her to the ground and aiming a kick to her face. In a simple but fearful cry, Miyu was kicked to the side. Akari stepped onto a sore part of her back and dug into it causing her cries to become louder with every second of increased pressure.

Bunker screamed, “You piece of shit, stop that before I—!“

“We should just kill her,” Rikka interrupted. “She’s not of any use to the prison anymore anyway. I’m sure you’d enjoy it, Akari.”

“Besides that display, I suppose you’d like to know why you’re here, what we are, and what we’re going to do with you,” Akari nodded in agreement to what Rikka said.

“We’re going to hit two birds with one stone here,” she said. “We are Elites.”

“Cleaner Elites, Akari. There’s a difference,” Rikka added.

“Shut up, Rikka,” Akari ‘tsk’-ed. “We were created and raised by the prison, for the convenience of the prison. We’re taught a frightening amount of skills in order to kill someone.”

Rikka scorned Akari for a moment. “I suppose you could say we’re special,” she said. Rikka strode beside Akari and sneered at the body below them. She motioned to Miyu who was breathing heavily from the damage Akari inflicted on her. She kneeled to Miyu and pulled on bundled locks of her hair. As if synchronized with her, Akari stepped onto her back even harder than before. Her pained expression wasn’t unseen by the group, “We’re better than any simple cleaner like her.”

“But don’t worry. We’re not going to do anything to you. Not yet,” Rikka let go of Miyu’s hair, “We’re going to go after the trio that left this prison.” Under her breath, she muttered in disgust of how pampered the prison was.

“Yuria and Haruka are our main targets,” Akari continued. “Oh, right! I suppose you don’t know who that is.”
“Peace is coming back as a traitor of the prison. She’ll be taught the consequences of betraying the prison. Or maybe we’ll just kill her,” Rikka smiled at Nobunaga. “I suppose it’s not a surprise, Nobunaga-san?”

Nobunaga glared at the two in contempt.

“Paru will be coming back and trained to be a cleaner whether she wants to or not,” Akari jeered. “We’re done playing.”

Miyu was kicked away from the two Elites. Miyu grunt as she rolled a few feet away from them. Someone entered as Rikka stood up and traced an arm around Akari’s body, “That’s enough.” The newcomer pointed at the guards. “You take them back to their cell,” One was about to grab the beaten cleaner on the ground, but she stopped him. “She stays.”

“Oh, Nao!” the two saw her entrance.

Messi made a roaring sound as Nao scoffed at her. Nao stepped aside to avoid being touched by her as much as possible. Others were just as unwilling to leave when Miyu was going to stay with the two—now three—Elites.
As the guards ushered them out, Nantene charged towards them as much as she could in concern. “Then what about Nanashi? What are you going to do to her?”

Akari smirked sadistically. “Isn’t it obvious? We’re going to kill her.”

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~ by sleepingneko on June 26, 2014.

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