A Meeting with Symmetry
“Kid, huh?” I asked amusingly, craning my head to get a better view in the mirror where Lord Death resided in his alternative universe. The whole contacting via bathroom or reflection or handheld pieces of glass was still a working progress for me as I really didn’t understand this whole “Death” nonsense. I watched the black reaper shake his masked face vigorously, hiding his true emotions. Whether he actually hated everyone and had a death wish for me, I would never know.
Ah what was I doing? This death thing was confusing as hell.
“Yes, that’s right,” the creature sang in his unusually high pitch voice. Again I couldn’t help but wander off mentally, wondering why the almighty Death seemed more like that of a retired, giddy grandpa. “Ah, Kaze?”
“Hmm?” I retorted, still in the thick of thinking.
“Do you mind listening? This is rather important,” he murmured sadly.
“Oh! Yes, sir. My apologies,” I laughed sheepishly, scratching my head. Man, I truly hoped this thing couldn’t read minds.
Lord Death sighed impatiently, shaking his ghastly head. “Look, I understand how this can be a bit overwhelming with you being on the job for the first time… but you simply can’t be distracted. This is what you want to do, yes?”
“Y-yes! Of course!” I interjected. Of course I did. I had been in the DWMA for what…? Six years? Six years of running about and searching for ways to help others and accompany in missions with Stein without ever really being assigned one myself. It had taken this long to gain the trust of the people living here and finally I was to be given a mission to pursue for myself with no monitoring from my mentor. Sure, Stein was great and all, but I’ve had enough with having the Doc babysitting my every move. I gritted my teeth at the recollection of all the times I spent fighting with him against soul consuming demons and freaks. I shook away a creeping blush. No, I was going to prove myself at last. This was it!
“If you’re quite done with your little heated celebration, I’d like to assign you the mission, Kaze?”
So much for not going crimson on the spot.
“Y-yes, sir. I’m ready.”
Death nodded in approval, “Alright then, as I was saying, you will go in search of Kid at the Egyptian temple I assigned him to.” I nodded with a gleam in my eyes, growing more excitable with each detail. “His mission is to find and deal with a terrible witch manipulating with the pyramid’s sleeping corpses, bringing them to life on a gruesome prowl for souls.”
‘Alright’, I thought to myself, ‘Murderous mummies, a witch commanding their every move… what else…? What did this have to do with this Kid…?’
“There is also a sort of Pharaoh sleeping within its chambers and I fear that it may wake up at any moment because of the witch’s thirst for power.”
“Got it,” I grunted understandably. “So you’d like me to find this Kid and escort him on his mission and assist in killing these things?” I could hardly hold in the flowing energy. “Alright!” I tightened my fist, grinning widely, “You can count on me Lord Death!” I was just about to wrap up this meeting and get a start on my sprint to Egypt when Death had more to say.
“Heavens no!” he practically shouted, putting me in a frozen pose, half readying for the great dash, the other reaching back awkwardly to face him once more. “You are to only observe, young one.”
I momentarily forgot how to breathe.
“Yes,” he answered in a matter of fact tone, splashing back a cup of coffee. “Ob-serve.”
I spun around a pleading look on my face. This couldn’t be happening to me! “B-But Sir,” I tried.
“No buts, Kaze,” he said, wagging a large gloved hand making me wince. I really detested his dreadful chops… “You said you wanted a mission so you got one.”
“Lord Death!” I pried, raising my voice ignoring the part of me begging to be saved from a beating to the head, “I’ve done my time! Six years I’ve slaved away to gain the trust of these people and- and- this isn’t…”
“Fair?” he finished for me as I lost my wording, panting with some unseen weight on my lungs. His mask contorted into an expression of pity, blinking sadly. ‘Could masks blink?’ I wondered foolishly. “Kaze,” he repeated my chosen name once again making me shake with anger.
“This isn’t just about gaining trust is it?” I snapped bitterly, fully facing the mirror obscuring my reflection with that of Death. He made no remark as I pressed harder into the subject. “If this is seriously about the incident, then this discussion is pointless.”
“Yeah, Yeah, Kaze my ass,” I muttered, shifting to stare at something distant, clenching my teeth with a bitter sense of jealously. No one was treated this stubbornly. Not because of a simple little accident. “That’s what you people keep calling me, but you don’t really think I believe that’s my real name do you?”
Lord Death sighed, gazing back at me with those endless pits of black. “Look, if you can-“
“KAAAAAAZZZZZZEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!! WHEN DID YOU CALL IN?! OH HOW I’VE MISSED YOU!!!!!”
My eyes jolted open as my ears rumbled to the horrid, awful, disgusting, annoying, ridiculous, absurd…
“Oh, my dear. You’re looking beautiful as always” *swoon*
Low-life, scum-bag, distasteful…
“Come and give me a kiss now!”
“God damn it Spirit! Get the hell out of my face. I don’t need you to make my blood pressure rise any higher than it already is!”
There was a sudden chill in temperature as Spirit froze in mid grin, only to slither away into a jumbled, sobbing mass in the corner. From here I could see him tracing unknown patterns into the floor (?) of the realm… whatever or wherever the hell they were. A bead of sweat trickled from Death. Did death sweat? Or perhaps that was my own spit passing through some dimension hitting him square in the face. I almost chuckled at the thought.
“Well then, Kaze,” he eventually continued the discussion, passing unconcerned glances at the melting blob on the ground in the background. “It’s up to you whether or not you’d like to proceed with what I’ve given you. I must run now and tend to… things,” he paused to wave a large signal of departure, “So long!” And the image flickered to that of my fuming face, thick with rage.
“No! Death… Damn it…!” I spat, throwing a punch at the surface of the mirror, ignoring the gurgling pain welling in my knuckle. Bright liquid oozed out, sliding along my still sliced wrists. Glass fell in showered of light, clinking against the cold bathroom floor of the school’s corridors. A frustrated sigh slipped from my lips as I thought of the deduction that was no doubt going to be pulled from my banking account. ‘Great, just another thing for Stein to scold me over’.
I retracted my hand from the fractured frame, watching myself through the distorted reflection. ‘Broken. Fractured. Bent. Disturbed. Not a complete and perfect whole.’ I grunted to no one in particular, ‘Seems an awful lot like me’.
Observing the small cut on my fist, I debated ways to hide the wound. No doubt Stein would easily sabotage me into showing it to him for stitches.
I sighed again, thrusting my hands into my pockets.
… I did wonder though… About Death’s reasons for keeping me under such tight provisions and limited freedom. Could it really have to do with my attempted suicide? It just didn’t add up. Why should he punish me for something I hardly remember doing in the first place? You would think that someone suffering from Amnesia would be allowed a break.
I jumped at the sound of a throat clearing behind me.
“S-Stein,” I hissed, glaring at him through the mirror’s distorted version of him. “What are you trying to do? Give me a heart attack?”
He smirked in reply, pulling out one of his cigarettes as well as a lighter. The smell, though highly intoxicating, somehow calmed me. I grinned, turning to face him, leaning against the sink filled with tiny shards. “Didn’t anyone tell you that it’s not considered very gentleman like for guys to sneak into the girls’ restroom?” I teased cautiously, crossing one leg over the other as I lifted myself to get more comfortable in his presence. “Don’t tell me you’ve come to make a pass at me.”
It’s only a joke, but it still raises a slight chill down my back.
Stein puffed out a wave of smoke in reply, maintaining his mischievous expression. ‘Joke. It was only a tiny joke…’
Suddenly in a blurred motion he was merely inches in front of me, his arms stretching past where my hands rested in a stable posture upon the sink’s edge. His upper body leaned forward, too closely. The cigarette was gone, thrown into the bin during his flawless actions. He took a moment to gaze at me ponderously, then broke into that famous plotting scheming face… again.
I couldn’t breathe. How’d it go again? You inhale… and then exhale…
Damn, I couldn’t do anything.
“Hmm…” he seemed to hum to himself, “So, what if I have? What are you going to do now that I have you here, alone…?” he tilted his head, awaiting my answer.
‘What? What was the question?!’ I gulped, forcing a shaky smirk.
All that came out was a stupefied “HUH?”
‘I’m a moron! A babbling, obnoxious moron!’ I screamed in my mind, trying to play it cool in reality.
He took my confusion as if it were the most hilarious thing anyone could say to him. He laughed pleasantly, then slowly backed away giving me room to finally gather my senses.
‘Gah, I’m the most retarded, idiotic, unforgivable…’
“So, the meeting with Lord Death didn’t go quite as well as you hoped?” Stein pointed out, nodding towards the direction behind me. I noticed his flicker to the hand that dealt the damage to the glass. I tried ignoring it.
“Hmm? Oh yes, that…” I sighed, glancing back at my mortified face, ‘great recovery, Kaze’. “Yeah, things went sort of downhill there.” I faced towards the Doc again to give a nervous, forced laugh. “Guess I’d better just take what he’s offered me. Better than nothing I suppose.”
Stein said nothing, just simply grunted in acknowledgement, his eyes lingering once more at my throbbing hand.
“So who is this Kid, kid anyways?” I tried distracting him, as well as myself. The pun almost made me groan with discomfort.
“Death the Kid…” Stein murmured as I strained to hear him. This was always his ritual. One had to be a good listener with this guy… He reached into his lab coat as he spoke, pulling out a pool of thread and a needle. “The wielder of two weapons. The son of Lord Death himself,” in a swift motion, he had my hand in his, working his way with the sewing. I rolled my eyes, cursing myself for my carelessness. ‘Wait…’
Suddenly I exclaimed a bit loudly in a deranged voice, “S-Son??!!” Stein twitched at my increase in volume. “Kid is Death’s… Death has a…. Kid is…. W-H-A-T?!” I grew very dizzy with an endless array of questions flooding my frantic mind. “But- how does that happen? I mean to conceive a child that involves a woman… and a woman and a man have se-“
I stopped abruptly growing more aware of Stein’s hand on mine as I rambled about this… awkward…topic…
“Yes,” he simply stated, not drawing his attention away from my pulsating knuckle, “It is rather… unexpected.”
“I-I see,” was all I could manage as I waited for him to finish up. In not too long he was up, brushing off the collected dust that had clung to his pant legs, placing the spool back into his pocket along with the needle. “T-Thanks,” I said smoothly, sliding down back to my feet.
“I wish you’d be a bit more careful,” Stein spoke softly, pulling his hand up to twist the knob firmly located in his head.
“I am,” I pointed out, tired of appearing like a child needing to be taken care of, “You know that I’m trying to get everything straightened out.” In a dramatic gesture, I pointed a thumb at my chest, winking reassuringly. “I’ll manage just fine, so stop worrying!”
Stein seemed unimpressed, shaking his head. “Just, make sure that you watch your back. Remember I won’t be there to save you,” he chuckled signaling a joke.
“Shut-up!” I said annoyed, storming past him, hand resting against the door leading out. Hesitant, I risked a quick glance back at my friend, smiling sweetly, I swallowed back a wave of emotions, nodded a goodbye, and set out.
Had I stayed much longer, I probably would have been completely sure he had whispered ever so quietly “be safe…”
Where the hell was this kid?!
I wandered around aimlessly for what felt like an eternity in this god damned desert without so much as a tumbleweed let alone a pyramid in sight. Was this all a big fat joke? Just how in the world was one to find a place in the middle of nowhere without so much as a map?
Ah, yes. That would be DWMA. Dumbasses without map access. Or maybe Death Worships Mean Aliens… Well, there wasn’t much to work with…
The heat was definitely getting to me.
I found myself fading to a slow jog, panting and huffing, clasping my knees. With one eye shut, I wiped away a trickle of sweat from my burnt face. ‘Well Stein…’ I thought in between gasps, ‘A tube of sunblock might have served useful…’
A raspy laugh from above captured my attention as I noticed for the first time the sun laughing his head off having a jolly good old time in this heat. Each attempted chortle was heavier and more hideous sounding than the last, like a panting dog just begging to be shot down in the backyard. The god damned thing was happy. Here I was melting into a freaking puddle all because that stupid thing was stark raving giddy with delight at flashing this scalding hot mess at me. Quite frankly, I was pissed off.
“Laugh all you want you bastard!” I screamed at the sky, shaking a fist, flipping him the bird. “You’re just lucky you were born as a freaking star in space or I’d haul your ass over here and put you out! How’d you like that you son of a bitch?!”
Great. Now I was cursing out threats at the sun…
From the distance, a low hum grew audible.
I tossed my head in the direction of the noise, striving to pick up a better sound. Sure enough it was an actual thing, not just my imagination. I grew delirious with relief. “Thank God,” I mustered with precious energy, noticing a dark, black figure approaching in sight. Enemy or not, I was thirsty and desperate for company. “Hey!” I yelled, waving my arms.
The dot was growing larger. I smiled, promising myself to never travel in this God awful land ever again.
But the dot was growing larger increasingly fast. It was… too fast. In no time at all I recognized it to be a vehicle of some sort… no wait… a skateboard? A flying skateboard? And there as its passenger… it was WHOA!
Just in the brink of time, I leaped out of the way, a flurry of words tangling in my ears as the object shot back in the direction I came. “……. Sure it’s not fixed. I have to adjust it…”, were the only noises I could place into actual syllables before the insane white striped kid rocketed out into the distance.
Meanwhile, it dawned on me that the kid was no doubt my target and he was gone in the direction of home and I was still stranded here in the middle of the desert. Mission less and alone and thirsty.
“G-G-G-God DAMN IT!!!” I stomped about, collapsing into the dagger like sand. “I hate everything,” I muffled under the weight of the ground on the verge of tears. I hardly noticed the sound of the object making its way back, landing snugly by my side.
“Oh my goodness… You-You-You’re…”
I raised my head at the intruder’s voice, snapping up to a defensive posture, clumsily gagging away clumps of sand from my mouth. “E-Eh?” I finally managed after the final cough of dust. The boy before me had this bizarre sparkle in his eyes, explosions of yellow and gold threaded together making him almost appear adorable… He wore a neat attire of a black, butler looking dress shirt and snazzy pants with the odd yet signature white stripes in the left side of his black, black hair. Yep. Looked like a Death admirer to me. Although he still seemed to be struggling with his words…
“U-Uh, Kid?” I tried for verification, somewhat disturbed by his star struck gawking at my face. “Is that who you a-“
“Perfect! Ab-So-Lute-Ly Perfect!” he sang, interrupting my question. I felt a vein beginning to throb with frustration, trying to keep up with this weirdo.
“Beautiful!” he exclaimed, growing closer with each spontaneous remark, “You’re absolutely beautiful!”
My hands rose protectively up to my face, “H-Hey now, let’s not get too clo-“
He suddenly copied me, pulling up his hands as well, forming a strange signal. ‘Crap!’ I thought, panic-stricken, ‘He’s going to try for some weird technique!’ Remembering the fact this was the famous Death the Kid, kid of Death himself, I shielded myself, bracing for impact. But he was only…
Making a rectangle with his fingers, framing me in the midst of it.
“How wonderfully symmetrical!” he spoke happily, adjusting his ‘frame’ in different positions. “If only I had a camera on me…”
‘The hell was wrong with this guy?!’
“Uh… hey, K-Kid.”
He blinked in surprise as if awoken from some bizarre dream. Dazed he looked at me, I mean really looked at me, and just stared. “K-Kid?” I found myself stuttering once again, approaching him with concern, snapping my fingers, poking his cheek, shaking his shoulders. “H-Hey! Are you alright?!”
Shuddering, he blinked once more letting me relax since I thought he was dead for second there.
Then he collapsed to the ground in a sort of clump, banging his fist on the ground repeatedly shouting: “Garbage! I’m worthless garbage! I don’t deserve to live! Low, disgusting, asymmetrical garbage!” He began to sob.
I honestly didn’t know what to do. I was close to the brink of tears myself.
Regaining my composure after quite some time, I rubbed my temple then walked over to squat beside the trembling boy.
“H-Hey,” I tried in a soothing tone, “Who said you were garbage?” Holding back a groan, I tested the waters by very reluctantly reaching out to pat his back. At the touch he stiffened, then slowly and quite creepily, he slinked up to a slouched sitting position on his knees, blinking at me incredulously.
“Y-You mean you d-don’t think I’m garbage?” he whimpered, wiping away snot and tears. I gritted my teeth not sure what to expect anymore. ‘Just don’t upset the kid…’
I tilted my head slightly, mocking what Stein always did to show me he was content and supportive for what was to come. “Of course not!” I spoke in a sickeningly cutesy voice, adding a giggle for good measure.
At this, his pupils seems to grow into black holes, sucking away all the depression that had consumed him from out of nowhere. He beamed at me, more tears falling to the ground, a very wobbly smile making its way on him wet face.
Then he bowed at me.
“You lovely Goddess, I am not worthy of such kind words!” he mumbled through the sand, bending down to a full on bow.
“G-Get up you idiot!” I shouted, losing my composure. ‘Seriously, who was this kid really? Did they expect me to believe this to be Death’s own flesh and blood?!’
My hands were swept into his own as he placed hundreds of kisses upon my knuckles. I had no time to deal with this. Without giving him a warning, I punched him as hard as I could manage on his head. A small goose egg swelled at the tip, growing red with irritation. Proud and content with my works, I approved his sudden silence. He cooed silently in pain.
“N-Now,” I concentrated on remaining in control, my frown twitching uncontrollably, “I’m only guessing, but you are Death the Kid right?” ‘Say no, god say no. Say. No.’
He rubbed his head, a scowl appearing on his face. He seemed to avoid eye contact. “Yes,” he replied after much consideration. “That is correct.”
I began to cry inside.
“My father is Lord Death, may I ask who you might be?” he stopped to take in another look over before quickly and enthusiastically adding, “My dear maiden?”
Ignoring his added statement, I promptly told him my given name from after the Amnesia incident. It didn’t take much to realize that the kid was well aware of who I was. Turns out, I was quite famous around the area.
“The Kaze?” he said astonishingly, standing to brush off flecks of particles clinging to his strangely formal attire. “I’ve heard of you,” he continued, stretching out his hand to shake mine, “You’re the girl from nowhere. The one who… well,” he seemed to choke on words he meant to spill out, but on quick consideration modified it to a more polite approach, “I’m truly sorry. I shouldn’t pry into your affairs.”
The sudden formality and kindness of the conversation surprised me. It was as though he were a completely different person. I shook my head disapprovingly. “Don’t be, it’s quite alright. Thanks for being considerate of my private life though,” I smiled a genuine smile, “It’s kind of rare from someone to show that kind of politeness.”
He returned the smile back, adjusting a piece of hair from his face. Now on closer inspection and based on earlier outbursts, this kid was obsessed with symmetry. That explained the outfit and the obsession with my equally layered wispy, golden-brown tinted hair… Surprised he could tell I got it cut specifically that way; neat and even. ‘Better leave hair guy a bigger tip next time…’ But what was with his hair?
Better not ask… Don’t want to cause another riot.
“Ah!” I suddenly remembered why I was there in the first place, “So! I’m assuming you’re all done?” I did wonder though… Looking him up and down, I didn’t see any of the rumored twin weapons.
Kid suddenly looked very grave. I knotted my eyebrows, curious as to how to approach this new behavior, but was frightened to do so. Of course, he broke down. Of course he did.
“Crap! I’m such an idiot! Worthless! Garbage! Absolute garbage!”
“K-Kid! Hey,” I reached out to him, shaking him a bit more violently than last time, “Get a hold of yourself! So you didn’t finish your mission! Let’s just go back and get it over with hmm?? Where’s your weapons?”
In a burst of energy, I was pushed away in a heavy atmosphere thick with… something. Agony? ‘What the he-‘
“No!!! I have to check to make sure that it’s all perfectly straight and even! The frame is going to drive me insane!” In a quick flash of speed he was on his skateboard device, a burning passion lingering in his yellow coated eyes.
“Come on my dear!” he directed at me, grabbing my arm.
“Hey wait! I said wait!!!”
I was forced to wrap my arms tightly around Kid’s waist (as he was surprisingly taller than me…) as the skateboard lurched and adjusted itself under the added weight, whirling loudly before shooting off towards the academy.
“I’m going to go on a limb and say the mission didn’t go well?” Stein chortled amusingly as I glared at him, shielding as much of my crazed hair into a decent appearance.
“Don’t even talk to me!” I yelled, storming off into my bedroom, “Screw this Kid, I’m going to bed!” I then slammed the door. In there I found a note written neatly and creases in absolute profession. ‘God, no…’
“My dearest Goddess,
I apologize for the tragic wind that ruined your symmetrical beauty and hope to run into you once again in the future.
-Death the Kid
P.S. In your bathroom you shall find a bottle of shampoo and conditioner quite fitting to your perfection.
‘Kill… I’m… GOING TO KILL THIS KID!!!’
Meeting Death the Kid- End
Want to find out a bit more about Stein and me? Click here for a little preview of the incident.
Or here for the introduction of Stein:)