Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ Capricious Infection ❯ Act 16: Suppressed By All These Fears ( Chapter 16 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
By: Revamp/Melissa Norvell
Act 16: Suppressed By All These Fears
“Of course we can.” In a way, Tarvos anticipated this moment. He felt Dante take him by the forearm and lead him out of the room. They continued to walk through the house until they were outside. “What is this about?” Undoubtedly, it was about his little last minute confession, which was another creative wrench he had thrown so intricately into the cog works of Dante's mind.
“I want to figure out some things. I also wanted to thank you,” the teen's voice was low and sincere. He refused to look at the alien's visage just yet and kept his sights before them as the two walked down Rezzi's driveway and onto the same concrete walkways that he and Lannad had walked on moments before.
Tarvos quirked an eyebrow. This wasn't exactly what he had expected. “Thank me? For what exactly?”
“You spent all of this time, just trying to find me. You even used Pandora to bring me back.” At least, that was what Lannad had told him and he had no choice but to believe her side of the story until new information was provided.
“Letting you rot is out of the question. As I have stated prior, I need you.” It was his job to make sure that Chaos came back to this world. Chaos and death went hand-in-hand and were important for each other's existence, among other reasons.
Dante finally glanced up at him. “This might seem irrelevant but…do you love me?” He had to know. It was eating him alive in the most disturbing of ways and since Tarvos had claimed that the two of them had a relationship, there were so many things he wanted to ask the grim reaper about that part of his past life.
Tarvos' smug smile soon dropped into a frown that resembled an upside down crescent. He seemed thoughtful for a moment before he answered, “I care about you a lot. I actually couldn't tell you if I love you or not.”
What kind of answer was that? “Why not?”
“I wouldn't know what that felt like. I've never loved anyone. You knew this, and you didn't seem to mind. We had somewhat of a strange relationship,” the alien explained. There was no actual one word that could truly describe what exactly their relationship entailed.
“Strange relationship?” Again with this blurred line of his? He was going to find out what exactly went on if it killed him, whether it is mentally or physically. Dante had to know the answer, and he was almost desperate to obtain it right now.
“We exhibited mating habits without being committed,” that was the best way that he could even give definition to it.
Dante wasn't sure he wanted to know what exactly that consisted of but he had something to compare it to. “Like being swingers?”
“Swingers?” What kind of human relationship was that?
“Swingers are together but they can have sex with other people. They have an open relationship,” putting it into Dius terms wasn't very easy, considering their relationship structure worked on entirely different levels. Dius also usually had permanent mates, so he wasn't even sure if it translated over well.
“We had something like that, yes. I could never get too attached to you.”
“What do you mean?” The black-haired boy was a little curious as to what exactly the problem was there. Obviously, there was some kind of construct that blocked them from permanently being together, and he wasn't sure if that was a blessing or a curse, but why exactly did it never end up happening?
“I'll fill you in as to who I am. I think you should know. You see, back when the universe was spawned, Oz and Calypso were the only two being in existence,” Tarvos began to explain something that was far beyond Dante's comprehension. It was a world where nothing existed but two figures, the dawn of the universe and all living things.
“Who the fuck is Calypso?” Tarvos was definitely going to have to back up a few words. Suddenly, it felt as though they were speaking two different tongues.
“Calypso is Space itself, and Oz is Time. Time and Space birthed all things in the universe,” Tarvos explained the new name and her purpose to his story.
It sort of made sense, he remembered similar things coming from Lannad's mouth about her religion. Perhaps it was a derivative of Dius culture. If it was, that was pretty bizarre.
“So…Space and Time are pyrex?” Dante questioned, making sure that he wasn't assuming anything.
“Not exactly, their relationship is complicated and at this point Oz and Calypso don't talk. When the universe was created, the Dius race flourished. In order to control them, Oz acted as both the giver of life and the undertaker of paradoxes.”
This only confused the boy with the soul of chaos even more than he was before. “So, he had your job and his? Where do you fit into all of this?” It seemed like Oz did just fine without someone like Tarvos around, so what was the point in having the Grand High Messiah if he could just do both jobs?
“I wasn't created yet,” Tarvos replied, only causing more confusion from the boy at his side.
“What? How long ago was this?” He had a feeling that the two Dius were ancient ones of great importance. Apparently Oz and this Calypso were around since the birth of existence, but how old was Tarvos?
“I wasn't created until after the birth of the universe. I had to regulate what Space and Time created so that it didn't clutter up. Without death, everything would pile up and get out of control. The same goes for races of people. If everyone could live forever they would just keep breeding. Those offspring would live forever and in turn, produce more offspring. The world would be overpopulated. That's why I exist.” It was the first purpose and function of the entity of death, a purpose that would branch out into several sub purposes throughout time and give way to the destruction of people, extinction of many living things and even the demise of paradoxes and worlds. It was a subject that few understood, a widely mysterious presence that impacted so many.
“Created?” He kept hearing him refer to himself as something that was created and not born. “You mean hatched from an egg, right?” That was how his people came into the world, right? Unless all of this time he had been thinking wrong.
“No, I wasn't. I was created and not born. You see, Oz acted as the grim reaper and the one who created paradoxes. He often paid visits to them to make sure that they were fit to be inhabitable. He also came to destroy them. It sent mixed signals and the beings he created began to fear him. Driven by the guilt and sorrow, Oz couldn't bear the thought of killing his creations or being thought of as horrible, so he took his soul and divided it in half. Space created a body for him and he implanted the soul into the body, purging all of his negative feelings and implanting them into that being. Oz wanted to create someone who was heartless and cruel but held a sick fascination with their job. Out of the darkness, I crawled up and assumed the job of the Dimension Reaper. People's fears turned on to me instead,” he had uttered that so simply, as if nothing truly bothered him that he was the manifestation of feelings that someone would rather have discarded. Tarvos was merely a puppet made to carry the burdens of an alien who could not face his own responsibilities or reality. The most tragic part of it all was that Tarvos didn't see it as something horrible; he merely acknowledged his fate as a part of his existence and carried out his role.
To be honest, it made Dante a little angry. That's a horrible existence to have. “How is that even fair?” He turned in a hurry, spinning around to level the reaper with a look of irritation.
“Life isn't fair,” it was something the alien knew all too well, and he wasn't about to change it now.
“If you were created and not born…” He trailed off, as if a revelation hit him.
“I had no childhood. All I did was kill and destroy. I could never be close to anyone or fill a sector of my love triangle because, you see…” Tarvos' smile returned. “I would have to kill them in the end. The only thing that could ever love me is something was either immortal or already dead. No ghost would have me. I was their reason to be.”
Dante was beginning to truly understand why exactly their past relationship was so strange. This guy had more issues than he originally thought, and everything began to make sense: the reason he had no conscience, reasoning for right and wrong, even the reason he was more than likely terminally insane. He wasn't a normal Dius for a reason, a very cruel reason that he just accepted.
This was, perhaps, someone with an even crueler fate than he.
“So, you just sit back and take all of the pain and hatred while Oz doesn't suffer the repercussion of anything he does? What the fucking fuck?” The more he thought about it and viewed it as an injustice, the angrier he became.
Tarvos shrugged, indifferent to it all. “It's not a big deal. I don't care, really. I'm evil to the world, the most unwanted thing. I've never been in love, because I don't really know what it is.”
Suddenly, Dante lunged forward and hugged Tarvos passionately, nuzzling his cold cheek in sympathy. A look of utter bewilderment etched itself onto the alien's face. Such a change in his features would have been classic for a photo opportunity.
“What?” The reaper's voice was awkward, noting the confusion even shook the core of his soul.
“Thank you for devoting all of your time to coming to find me. Thank you for making me realize what I am,” Dante continued a heart-filled admittance to the demon as he clenched the breast of his white shirt in his left hand. He rested his head on the Dius' shoulder.
He felt arms slowly wrap around him. It was a mechanical action, as if Tarvos didn't know the significance of such a gesture. “My mission isn't complete yet. I still have to make you realize your potential, my dear Diablo.”
“Can you just…call me Dante? That's my name now.” It was a request he hoped the other name would abide by. Date pulled him closer, nuzzling his cheek, and to be honest, something like this didn't see so bad. He was so close to death, more than he'd ever been. Close enough to smell the scent of Rezzi's floral soaps, the spring fresh scent of fabric softener, mixed with the metallic of blood and earthy scent of dirt.
“I can do that,” Tarvos confirmed and nuzzled him back affectionately. For once, the alien gave a smile of true contentment and peace. It was something not even Rezzi could coax out of him. A part of this felt like old times, and a part of him wanted a moment like this.
Dante pulled back with a look of irritation and a faint blush. “Okay, it feels weird now. Stop,” he muttered.
Tarvos put space between them. “Alright, if you want, we can just be allies. Nothing more, nothing less,” he was fine with that, knowing that what happened in the past was merely that and the situation was now severely different. If nothing else, the two finally came to a mutual understanding and an alliance of sorts.
Brown eyes averted. “I just can't feel that way about another man. I've never even questioned my sexuality…but now I do a little. Only about you. No one else,” he muttered the phrase in shame. Right now, Dante wasn't too sure about anything. He was merely trying to put the pieces together and doing a terrible job at it.
“I understand that it was sudden to tell you that. I was hoping to jar your memory somehow. I guess that wasn't the best way to do it. I have bad people skills.” It was a failed attempt, but it was worth a shot.
“I've noticed. You're very socially awkward.” That was a mere summary of his lack of any type of communication skills. Tarvos really was just bad at it. Dante figured that it came with the territory of being alone through most of his existence. When he looked at the whole picture, Tarvos was sort of pitiful.
“I'm not used to having to stay with a group of people. I can barely get by with talking to Oz, and we're technically the same person,” the Dius was usually an entity that floated from place to place, collecting the souls of the dead or putting an end to those whose lives were close to expiring.
Dante looked to him with a scowl on his face. “No, you aren't. You are your own person. Don't ever think that you're his puppet,” his words were strong enough to touch the cold-hearted killer's soul.
“Dante…” Tarvos trailed in a low voice that held the faintest hint of being touched by his words. There was only one other person who dared to speak such words to him. Inside, he could feel a layer of ice melt.
“I get it now. Our existence is the same. We can relate because we both live in a state that's really fucking detached. We're both things no one wants. No one likes chaos or death, most people are afraid of them.” They were both a dark subject on people's hearts, a subject that would rather be abolished than thought of at all, and ones that were deeply misunderstood by those around them.
“We lead a pretty sad existence, I guess. If I felt any one way but void towards that, I might feel like my existence is pretty pathetic,” Tarvos frowned again. Until now, he'd never pondered on that point of view. He figured that he was better off not thinking at all.
“What happened to my body? Was Pandora really a Dimension Walker?” Dante changed the subject. It was better to get away from the pressing matter of their existence for now and move onto things that would clear up his perception of the past.
“She took the real Dante's soul out of you. All I really did was extract Diablo's soul and switched them. I guess you could say that I played fate and god. Yes, she really was a Dimension Walker, Oz was correct. That's how she met me. I appeared to her in her dimension walks as a child and manipulated her into thinking that she had a purpose in freeing you. I taught her about you and she became obsessed with her mission, revolving her life around you. When she saw the child, she consulted me about her idea and we decided to make a soul swap. She prepared the body and extracted the soul. It was easy to kill off Chao and extract his soul. I then placed the child's soul into the hull and took his soul to the infant body,” Tarvos' story nearly matched Lannad's minus a few extra details that had not been brought to life. In a way, this only made his fears of existing by strange means even more of a horror story. Dante couldn't help but feel a little sickened by what he'd heard. It was unbelievable by most standards.
“So, my real body is in the Null Zone,” he looked at his black sneakers in contemplation.
“Yes, once I complete my mission, body and soul will rejoin,” Tarvos informed him of his ultimate plan.
“My memories won't come back, will they?” Gazing up at the reaper, Dante searched for the one answer that he feared and anticipated. If his old memories came back, he was afraid that the things he learned while in his human body would vanish. If his old memories didn't return, he would always be wondering what could have been or might have been.
“No, it's the sacrifice you made. They will just float in the void of time and you will have to make new ones, as you have for eons.”
“I'm old as dirt, but every time I was killed or every time I physically “died” I lost my memories of that existence. I just started over all but blank.” It was a cruel fate that was put on all of the Dius. They could live as long as they wished, technically immortal beings, but every time their bodies were destroyed they were doomed to start over and live a different life with different memories.
“So, taking out my soul killed me?” Dante wasn't surprised. He could understand the mechanics of how that would be true. In a way, it benefitted him to be able to live a human life all of this time.
“What's our goal? To destroy everything?”
“Partly, we're here to make Oz's vision a reality.” There was more behind it than merely ridding the world of its population.
“What do we get out of it? To live freely among the humans here?” Dante wasn't sure of what there was to gain by helping him kill off everything. Since they were alone, maybe Tarvos would give him some kind of real answer that wasn't mindfucking or some screwed up riddle that he could never answer.
“Among other things.”
Not a chance. Moving on…
“Because you are Oz, does that mean that the two of you share thoughts?” It ground on Dante's nerves, but he finally gained the courage to inquire on it. Part of him wondered how exactly that worked, sharing the same soul but being in different bodies. Perhaps it would tell him something about his own existence as well. Could Diablo read his thoughts? Well, the soul of Dante trapped in his other body…this was getting complicated.
“We can read each other's minds, but we can't speak of what we know.” If they did, things would end more than badly for either or both of them.
“You'll get punished if you do, right?” Dante shot him an all knowing look. It wasn't just a slap on the wrist for something so major.
“Yes, it's the same for Oz, too. You see, if Oz acts out of line…” The winged man held up his blade menacingly and smiled in an unstable way. His voice switched to being crazed and blissful. “I'll be forced to kill him!”
Dante arched an eyebrow, ignoring his sudden change from calm to crazy. He was sort of used to the strange quirk by now. “Is that the same for Chaos?”
“What if you act out of line?” That seemed more plausible than Oz doing something crazy from mere deduction of the reaper's clearly unstable mind. Besides, who killed the grim reaper? The question in itself was rather interesting.
“I have to kill myself, or I am killed by Oz or a thousand swords of hate,” Tarvos cocked his head to the side so quickly that it nearly resembled a twitch. His voice was still that unstable, happy tone.
“Do I even want to know?” That sounded like a horrible form of punishment from just thinking about it.
“It's a thousand swords, filled with the hatred of the world, plunged into your body. Only one Dius I know has even lived through it,” Tarvos noted the severity of such a punishment. Out of anything one of their race could face, it was the ultimate, crippling punishment and it was 99% guaranteed death, no matter who it befell. Those who lived through it were spared their lives, but other things were taken in its place.
“Who?” Dante was curious. Part of him wondered if Tarvos was talking about himself.
“The Bearer, she took the burdens of all who resided in this paradox in order to bring peace to it, but her ideals failed and left her scornful.” It wasn't himself, but it was another Dius that he knew closely. Her fate was one of the worst in his opinion, and even though she had survived the assault she was left with the inability to feel happiness.
“Sort of like the Christian religion, where Jesus took the sins of the world before he died on the cross,” Dante made a comparison that he knew the Dius wouldn't get. However, it made sense when he said it in terms he would understand.
“I suppose she is like a Dius version of your Jesus,” Tarvos knew a little about the human's Christian religion to get the comparison. The only difference between the Bearer and human Jesus was that the Bearer lived and was warped into something hateful and human Jesus was looked upon as the ultimate savior of their entire planet and held on a similar plain as their human god.
“Time, Death, Chaos and Suffering…I assume there are more,” Dante thought aloud, trying to retain the knowledge that Tarvos had given him.
“Space, Order, Deception, Life, Birth and Eternity,” Tarvos informed him of the other Dius who were still alive.
“Is that all of you that's left?” The boy inquired.
“BerefHex and HauntingGallows…” Dante trailed.
“Are Dius like you and I.” Well, more like Oz than the both of them, but it was close enough for a comparison.
“So, they must represent two of those aspects,” Dante discerned. The only question at hand was which ones did they coincide with?
“They do,” Tarvos confirmed.
The reaper looked at him.
“I'm going to look up to you for advice. Help me relearn what I need to know about your race.” If there was anyone who could help him out, it was him. There was no way in hell that he was going to ask Oz about any of this. From now on, he would seek out the man who once held so much affection for him as a personal instructor and the one who could help him understand the Dius race.
The familiar smile returned to the Dius' face. “I'll continue to help you in all of the ways I possibly can.”
Dante smiled in turn, happy to know that it seemed like one of the two Dius was on his side and willing to help him through his transition into Diablo, or rather a piece of Diablo until his body was recovered. Even though he didn't know what would happen when Tarvos got his body back, Dante was willing to trust him. The winged Dius did more than prove his worth by accomplishing all of those tasks for him. Not only that, Tarvos was someone he related to, someone who understood his existence by living close to the same type of life. In many ways, they were one in the same.
Dante told his new found ally that they should get back to Rezzi's house. He noticed that the sun was beginning to set and it was getting late. More than likely, everyone else was getting ready to go to bed and would be asleep by the time they walked through the door.
`Perfect...' Tarvos thought to himself and purred out his response to that idea, “but, of course.”
At the small house, Dante and Tarvos walked in to see that everyone was asleep in various places throughout the house. It was dark and dead quiet. The only noises that could be heard were the deep inhales and exhales of breath and a slight snoring.
Dante turned to Tarvos and spoke in a whisper. “I'm going to take a shower and head to bed myself. We have a long day ahead of us tomorrow.”
“I'm going to stay up a little longer. There's something I want to do,” Tarvos told him lowly as Dante turned and carefully stepped over his friend's bodies. When he reached the hall way, he looked over his shoulder.
“Rest well, when you go to bed.”
Dante's form soon exited the room, and dark blue eyes glanced around at their surroundings. Oz was resting on one side of Rezzi's leather couch. The Dius was lying on his back with one arm stretched into the air behind him. His right leg was bent and life left foot was still touching the floor. On the other side, Lannad slept, curled in a ball with her knees pulled up to her chest and her hands together, forming a pillow her head. Her long, baby blue tresses cascaded over the frills of her Lolita dress. Looking to the left, he noticed that the bodies Dante stepped over were Rezzi, who was sprawled out on the ground on her back, and David, who slept under the kotatsu table with a decorative pillow he snatched from the couch. Tony slept sitting up in one of the kitchen chairs, his head tilted back as he snored.
Making sure not to step on anyone, or give them a reason to wake up, Tarvos nimbly stepped around everyone as he made his way down the hall and took a right, opening the door to Rezzi's room. He had lived in this house so long that he knew it like the back of his hand. The reaper grabbed the War Scythe, which leaned against the wall, and walked into the middle of the room.
A dark smile crossed his features. `This is perfect, a parallel which runs along the same vein of energy, right on the marking lines. This will act as my direct link. The energy flow is also rapid here. That means I can make my get away when I need to.'
He tapped the end of his scythe on the ground, and a magic circle appeared beneath his feet, illuminating the room in a purple hue as its intricate patterns stretched to the walls. “It's time to complete the rebirth of Diablo,” his smile widened, showing off his jagged teeth and his eyes lit up with unstable excitement. The moment was in his grasp.
However, his moment was cut short as something was jabbed through his chest. Tarvos' eyes widened, his smile quickly turned into that crescent-shaped frown as he tilted his head down to see a sword blade, resembling that of the katana that was given to Mae coated with dark blue blood and protruding from the middle of his chest. The hilt was smashed against his back, in between his wings.
Blue blood ran from the corner of his mouth as that upside down crescent turned right side up and his voice filled with amusement. “Well, isn't this fucking ironic?”
This was his negligence and he only had his self to blame.
“Even if I can't kill you, I'm going to stop you from turning Dante into Chaos,” Ringo said through gritted teeth as he jerked the sword into Tarvos' body further.
Then, the Dius did something unexpected. He simply leaned back into the sword and continued to smile. “It seems that you've finally gotten one over on death. I admit I didn't see you come out of nowhere and stab me with the very weapon your precious girlfriend once wielded. Oh, you were smart and attacked me physically because you knew that I could negate magic. You even did it knowing I have the War Scythe and that I could have killed you.” There was not a doubt in Tarvos' mind that Ringo hadn't had this all planned out. Sure, he needed a moment to get over Mae's death, but it was just like him to seek out revenge.
He had indeed gotten the interesting moment he had mentioned earlier in a cruel twist of irony.
“This was for Mae, too. You should never have killed her. She had the right idea about you.” More and more, Ringo saw it as well. Tarvos was a horrible person with no disregard for anyone. He would kill anyone and was completely unpredictable. There was no way in hell that he was going to trust someone that wild, that powerful and that capricious. He was going to put an end to it, here and now.
The Grand High Messiah needed to be dethroned from his tyrannical reign.
“Maybe she did,” Tarvos turned around slowly, the sword sticking out of his body as Ringo let go, panic stricken, and he had realized that the grim reaper wasn't dying, although he was stricken in a vital place…by human terms. Shit. He didn't take into account that their anatomy might be different. A clawed hand reached out in a flash, latching his face as fingernails dug into his once flawless skin, “or maybe you're just another sacrifice to be made.”
…To Be Continued