Chapter 1: The Reset
What happened? Had he won? It was dark, and it felt cold. Was this the afterlife? Did he die? What felt like hours had passed, and he felt like he was floating in nothing. He felt buried in between both life and death, drifting in the nothingness that could have been purgatory. He could feel his chest immediately heave upwards, taking in what seemed like his very first breath as if he was being reborn. Light blinded him as he must’ve finally opened his eyes, trying to adjust to his new surroundings. He gripped onto his chest, hand over his heart, sweating.
He was still alive. He did it. He won. Enrico Pucci finally reset the universe. But where was he now? Where was this place that he had woken up in? There were so many questions he needed answers to.
As Enrico calmned himself, he felt around for a moment, his eyes still adjusting to this sudden light. He was sitting upright in a bed, and a nice one at that. He examined the room he was in, and saw that it was nothing more than a bedroom. But why? Why was he here? Was this his home? Was it someone else’s? He got out from under the bedsheets, his legs dangling from the side of the bed. He was wearing more casual clothing now instead of his usual priest garb. Who was he in this new universe? Where did Made In Heaven bring him? He got up and decided to investigate the room, his eyes immediately focusing on the desk next to the bed. The desk had a picture frame set on it, as well as a simple lamp which was plugged into the wall next to it. The picture consisted of Enrico (which cleared up that this must’ve been his room in this universe), and his supposed to be dead siblings. Perla, and Weather Report. Were they alive in this universe? He didn’t have a single idea what this universe consisted of, it was so different from what he expected.
“ Made In Heaven .”
He spoke to himself, attempting to summon the Stand. Seconds passed, but the Stand never appeared.
“ Made In Heaven! ”
He stated more sternly, still not seeing the Stand appear. Enrico panicked.
Not even C-Moon appeared. Had he been put into a universe where Stands never existed?
“ Whitesnake! ”
He almost yelled in a panicked state, fearing that it wouldn’t appear. To his relief, Whitesnake manifested right next to him easily, staring at him with its blank expression and cold white eyes. Enrico was slightly relieved, but felt on edge. Where had he been sent? What sort of cruel universe was this, taunting him with his deceased siblings? He had to look away from the picture, not wanting to even think about it, and instead considered the more important things. The picture that was taken of him and his siblings was in full color, which suggested that this was most likely the early 2000’s. But.. Perla had died in 1988, and Weather was killed by Enrico himself before the reset. Did this universe want to give him another chance? He had too many questions, but first he needed to know what day it was. No. He needed the year.
Enrico had been exploring this house, and had found some interesting things. First of all, this was in fact, his home. It was a small yet simple one floor house, with a cozy basement underneath. Secondly, he had discovered a new device. It was shaped like a phone, but it was way more advanced than the one he had before the reset, which took him a considerable amount of time to figure out how to use. Third of all, the current year was 2019. 2019? How had 8 years passed since the reset? Or, had Made In Heaven just thrown him here by chance? And lastly, he had figured out that both Weather and Perla in this universe were, in fact, deceased. Both had died from similar illnesses apparently. It didn’t make Enrico feel all that good, considering that meant in this universe they all got along. But it made him grateful for the new and improved technology in this universe. If it weren’t for his phone, he would have never known most of this. But, he sort of wished he could reset just one more time. It made him feel awful knowing that in this universe things were okay with Perla, Weather, and himself. He shook it off. He’d just have to live with this now. He’d have to walk in the shoes of the new and improved Enrico Pucci.
Enrico had been adjusting to this universe extremely well. He was still a priest in this universe, and attended church every Wednesday and Sunday, only occasionally going on Thursdays. He was happy with this, and was growing fond of this new universe. It was as if nothing could go wrong, and it didn’t for a few weeks.
Chapter 2: Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
His memories were fading fast. He could barely comprehend what was happening. Where was he going? Why was everything so bright?
He had appeared underneath some flattened cardboard in an alleyway. He coughed, out of breath like he had run a marathon, his heart beating quickly. He stood up, immediately almost falling over as his head practically spun. What just happened? What did he do? He was fairly positive he was walking through the hallways of The White House, ready to go on with his day like normal until he was forced behind something.. But, by who? Where was he sent? He leaned against the alley wall, still trying to get his bearings straight. Had he activated his Stand on accident? Or did he do it out of self defense? He couldn’t remember. He stumbled out of the alleyway, putting a hand up to his face to shield his eyes from the sunlight. He walked onto the sidewalk, and then stepped out onto the road, examining his surroundings. He heard a loud noise coming from beside him, as he immediately flew back, his rear planting down onto the concrete as a peculiar automobile drove past him. Where had Funny Valentine gone? Was this even still America anymore?
He curiously explored his surroundings, giving a few people he spotted some odd looks. One woman he saw wore what looked to be a skirt too short to be considered modest. He even saw multiple people wearing shirts and pants showing way too much skin. Don’t even get him started on the things he saw other men wear.. What kind of twisted world was he thrown into? Could he even get back home?
He had to find somewhere to hide, or at least calm himself down. This place must have had a church or something. Even in this weird and unnatural world he was in, there had to have been a church. Whenever Valentine was in distress, he always went to a holy place to spare him of his concerns and worries. He looked around for a moment, approaching a random bystander.
“Pardon, where’s the nearest church?”
He asked bluntly, getting an odd look from the person. He crossed his arms, thinking they were looking at him like this because he was the president. The person he asked seemed to have eyed him up and down a few times.
“Uh.. A few blocks down?”
The person answered a little awkwardly. Valentine wasn’t that intimidating, was he? He looked in the direction the person pointed in and nodded,
“Right. Much appreciated.”
He answered almost with no emotion, having no interest to talk to this person anymore and basically waved them off, walking away quickly. He immediately wanted to get out of this world, but was afraid he wouldn’t even be able to summon his Stand. What if another Valentine had the Stand, and this wasn’t the base world? He was pretty sure there was only one base world anyways, right?
Valentine was afraid he was pointed in the wrong direction, having been walking for what felt like an hour or two, still getting weird looks from a few people. He felt.. Out of place. Almost like an outcast. He hated that feeling. Luckily for him, the new feeling didn’t stay long as he spotted what seemed to have been a small church. At least the person he asked didn’t lie, who would lie to the president anyway?
It was a Sunday, and Enrico had been keeping the church neat and tidy, preparing to close it soon. The day was almost over, and usually people stopped visiting around this time. He was just about finished with dusting off the pews when he heard the church doors practically swing open. He turned his head immediately, watching a curly haired blonde in a bright pink outfit rush inside and close the doors behind him immediately, slumping as if he was relieved. This man was wearing a lot of pink. Way too much pink. The man didn’t even seem to notice him when he burst into the room, turning around and dusting himself off a bit, freezing when he noticed Enrico. They both locked eyes for a good bit, not really sure if they should say anything to each other before Enrico decided to say something.
“..Is there something you need, sir?”
Valentine perked up, standing more upright now.
“No! No, no. I just..”
He paused, trying to think of something to say.
“I just.. Want to stay here for a little while. My sincerest apologies, Father..?”
He slightly dragged on the last word, wanting a name before anything else.
Enrico finished it for him, and Valentine’s demeanor quickly changed from slightly awkward to friendly and comfortable, reaching his hand out.
“Of course, Father Pucci. I’m Funny Valentine. I apologise for barging in so suddenly.”
Enrico was slightly weary, but hesitantly took Valentine’s hand and shook it. Valentine continued talking,
“I’ve always loved churches, you know. They’re such a comforting place for a man like myself. When I was younger, I used to come here and pray for my father when he was in the war.”
He rambled, looking around the church and examining as many little details as he could. Enrico was taken aback by how quickly Valentine started talking to him as if they’ve been friends.
“Speaking of war, I took part in one myself. That’s how I was on my way to become President. It was an eye opening experience, really.. Have you ever been in a war, Father Pucci?”
Enrico opened his mouth to say something, but was cut off.
“Oh, sorry. That must’ve been an invasive question. I tend to go off on a few tangents, you see?”
Valentine looked at Enrico, who looked utterly confused. There was silence between the two of them again, before Enrico started some questioning.
“..I know this is an odd question, but, do you perhaps know what year this is?”
Valentine perked up, confused but didn’t pay much mind to it.
“October 9th, 1890, yes?”
Enrico knew something was off about this guy. There weren’t any recent wars he could think about, and this mans accent and the way he dressed was way too out of date. He backed away from Valentine.
“Who are you? Are you a Stand user?”
He gave Valentine a weary glare, extremely tense now. Valentine seemed confused still.
“Oh? I told you, my name is Funny Valentine.”
He put a hand on his hip, his expression now just as weary as Enrico’s.
“And, a Stand user? You couldn’t mean..”
Valentine backed off too,
“Is that what you call these phenomena? Stands?”
Enrico could see the tension on Valentine’s features. He wasn’t sure if he was here to hurt him or not, so his questioning continued.
“Why are you here? Have you come to hurt me?”
He asked sternly, not wanting to take any risks. Valentine’s expression changed from slight fear to one of shock and surprise.
“Hurt you? Oh, dear God of course not!”
He quickly replied, sounding slightly offended.
“I have no reason to even lay a finger on a man of God, such as yourself, Father!”
Enrico crossed his arms, still suspicious.
“You said something about a phenomena, right? If you’re not here to hurt me, then show me your, quote en quote, ‘phenomena’. You will then gain my trust.”
Valentine had a concerned look on his face, definitely wearing an expression that told Enrico he was fairly unwilling to do such a thing. He didn’t have much of a choice however.
“I usually wouldn’t be willing to show just anybody my ability. I hope you understand this, Father.”
“ Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap .”
The pastel blue and pink stand manifested next to Valentine with ease. He actually looked relieved that the Stand even showed up in the first place.
He cheerfully stated as he flaunted off his Stand, which seemed fairly unamused, even with its expressionless features.
“I deem him D4C to shorten things.”
He immediately turned to look at Enrico,
“Now that I've shown you my ability, I feel it’s appropriate you show me yours too, no?”
Valentine smiled. His smile was one you would give to a close friend after seeing them for the first time in years, and Enrico wasn’t fully sure how to feel about it.
“.. Whitesnake .”
The pale eyed Stand formed next to Enrico, its attention focusing on D4C .
“So, Father Pucci, do you believe that I’m harmless?”
Valentine put his hands on his hips, raising an eyebrow with a cheeky smile on his face. Enrico looked at him silently for a bit, before turning and heading towards one of the many pews in the church.
“Funny Valentine, right?”
He sat down in the pew, scooting over just enough to leave a spot for Valentine to sit down with him, patting the open seat.
“I’d like for us to continue talking. Stand users attract other Stand users for a reason, you know.”
“W-What do you mean that it’s 2019?”
Valentine almost yelled in disbelief. It was well passed the church’s original closing time, but here was Enrico Pucci with his new found companion, Funny Valentine.
“I mean, I knew this wasn’t 1890 anymore, with all of these fancy automobiles and things you call.. Sell-Fonez? But.. I would have never thought that I was sent so far in the future..”
Valentine and Enrico had been talking for at least an hour or two, both discussing about their own experiences with this odd universe. Valentine had described to Enrico that he was from the late 1800’s, and was President of the United States of America. Despite remembering a good bit of things very vividly, the rest of his memory was hazy. He couldn’t for the life of him remember chunks of his life. He retained no memory of any siblings or friends he once had. The only people he remembered from his life was his father, and a young woman he couldn’t fully picture for the life of him. He only remembered her first name, Lucy, and nothing more.
“I’m a little shocked myself. I thought it was surprising when I was sent 8 years into the future..”
Valentine and Enrico sat in silence for a bit.
“..You don’t think a Stand did this?”
Valentine questioned, a slightly concerned look on his face. Enrico immediately shook his head and crossed his arms.
“No, of course not. Maybe this is all just some freaky coincidence.”
Valentine stared off into the distance, getting lost in his own thoughts and memories, at least what was left of them.
“I don’t have any way of getting back to my own timeline..”
Valentine said out loud, feeling like he was talking to himself as Enrico looked at him and listened to his rambling.
“My D4C isn’t a time traveller, it just goes to different dimensions. Where do I go from here? I’m not the President anymore.. Do former Presidents get special treatment?”
Enrico listened to Valentine ramble for a little bit before saying something fairly risky.
“Valentine, my house has a basement with a few empty rooms available.”
Valentine paused and looked at Enrico, confused.
“..What do you mean?”
“I’m saying that you can stay with me until we figure out how to get you back to your own timeline, from one Stand user to another.”
A childlike smile formed across Valentine’s face as Enrico continued,
“I feel God must have had a plan for us if we met like this so suddenly. Wouldn’t you agree that fate is such a quirky thing?”
Valentine nodded, still smiling.
“I agree completely! No wonder we became friends so quickly..”
Enrico stood up, already walking out of the pews.
“Since we’re both on the same page, I believe we should be taking our leave. I was supposed to close the church two hours ago.”
Valentine perked up and immediately followed him, not waiting to get left behind.
“Ah, now that i’ll be living with you for a while, you’ll need to teach me how to use those little electronic hand devices!”
“It’s called a cellphone, Valentine.”
“Self-Hone, got it!”
“ A deranged mental patient escaped Dolphin Gate Mental Hospital last night, ”
The man on the television began,
“ It is unknown how he had gotten out, and security cameras seem to have been cut in certain areas, making the suspect’s method of escaping even more mysterious. Police say that they will do all they can to arrest this escapee as soon as possible, and usher people to stay inside until further notice. ”
Enrico listened closely to what was said on the news report, immediately suspecting something of this information. It hasn’t even been a week since meeting Valentine, and now a deranged sociopath is on the loose? Could it have been a Stand user?
“What does the magic man in the picture device mean by that?”
Valentine said from the kitchen, hearing everything from there.
“It’s a T.V, and that man is a news reporter, Valentine.”
Enrico changed the channel to something more light hearted,
“And he means a dangerous person is on the loose. Which also means we could both be at risk.”
“At risk of what?”
“At risk of running into a possibly aggressive Stand user.”
Silence came upon the both of them for a short while as Valentine walked into the living room, a fresh cup of coffee in hand.
“On a happier note, I think I'm getting better with this tech, Pucci! I made this coffee stuff you make sometimes.”
Enrico looked over at Valentine, raising an eyebrow.
“Did you turn off the coffee maker?”
Silence between them both.
“..Wait, it doesn’t turn off by itself?”
He had been able to escape the police, but only by chance. He was just able to blend in with a crowd of people, making his way to somewhere more isolated so he could possibly call his Boss. Ever since he was put in that hospital, his calls from his Boss had been less frequent, and he had been unable to protect himself at all. Now that he was away from that hospital and wasn't being force fed strange pills and such, he might just be able to call his Boss again and see what he needed to do now.
The sound of a phone! How convenient for one to be here in this isolated alleyway of all places.
"Duuu-du du du-du~!"
It was louder, and he was getting close to it. Where was the phone? He could've sworn he heard it. He dug through some trash, trying to search for the phone before finding a rotten banana peel.
He put it up to his ear.
"B-Boss? Boss! I thought you'd never call.."
He started leaning against the alley wall, keeping look out for police officers.
"Oh, my sweet, sweet Doppio."
The man on the other end started,
"Of course I'd call you. You're my most loyal and cherished subordinate."
Doppio had to smile from that, but quickly reminded himself to be serious. This was the Boss he was talking to!
"Well, besides that.. Why'd you call me now, Boss?"
Boss on the other end was silent for a moment.
".. We're not entirely safe, my Doppio. I have this feeling that we aren't alone."
"What do you mean by that, Boss? I already got out of that hospital. Who else could be after us?"
"Other Stand users. I'm not sure why myself, but I feel there are other Stand users that could be after us.”
That information scared Doppio. Why would there be other Stand users out there that wanted to hurt Boss?
“W-What are we gonna do then?”
“It’s more like what you’re going to do, my sweet Doppio.”
It had been two weeks since the worrying news report, and luckily nothing Stand related had happened to Enrico or Valentine. It had been normal for the most part, both of them having been roommates for a little while. Valentine had been curious about his surroundings, and Enrico had begun to teach him about the new technology like you would to a child who’s learning how to read. However, with Valentine’s curiosity, it started a downward spiral of events for the both of them.
Valentine was glancing behind him, unsure of the boy that was currently following them. Enrico didn’t seem to notice.
“Is there something wrong, Valentine? You look distressed.”
Valentine looked back at Enrico, a worried expression on his face as he leaned in close and whispered,
“I think someone is following us..”
Valentine and Enrico both looked back, only to see noone. Enrico gave Valentine a concerned look, while Valentine seemed confused.
“Are you alright Valentine? Mentally, I mean.”
Valentine shook his head, trying to think if the person he saw was real or just a figment of his imagination. He could’ve sworn he was following them the entire time.
Valentine was quiet for a moment,
“..I’m alright. I’m sorry Pucci, I must just be stressed from all this sudden change!”
He laughed nervously, scratching the back of his neck as Enrico turned to start walking again.
“I can understand that. Such an intense change must be hard on a man like yourself.”
Valentine gulped, looking at Enrico for a moment before looking back. It was the pink haired boy. The kid that had been following them the entire time was there again. What did he want? Why was he following them? Valentine felt his heart race, and knew immediately that this wasn’t natural, and that there was something weird about this boy. He tried to pretend he didn’t see the boy, and turned to Enrico.
“Pucci, I think you’ll need to go on without me.”
He whispered to him, Enrico giving him another concerned look.
“What do you mean?”
“..Just wait for me, okay? I’ll meet up with you soon.”
Valentine said, and without waiting for a response he walked after the pink haired boy, now wanting answers. Enrico watched the boy in question, who seemed startled for a good moment when he noticed Valentine approaching. The boy quickly began to run in the opposite direction, and Valentine wasn’t about to let him out of his sight.
“Hey! Get back here, I knew you were following us!”
He yelled, immediately chasing after him, Enrico trailing behind and running after them.
Twists and turns through alleyways, rushing through small crowds, Valentine chased the pink haired boy without hesitation, simply having a gut feeling that something was up with him and that he knew something. The pink haired boy kept running, but had something in his hand, and up to his ear. Was he calling someone? Valentine didn’t know, and didn’t care. He didn’t know how long he had been running for, but finally he saw the boy run into an alleyway, and Valentine knew he must’ve cornered him. He quickly skidded to a halt, and turned to look down the alley.
“Aha! I finally-”
Valentine stopped, not seeing the pink haired boy, and instead spotting an oddly dressed blue haired man instead. The man looked at him for a moment, raising an eyebrow.
“..Oh.. Ah.. S-Sorry sir! I was looking for someone else..”
He curtsied as an apology, looking around to see where the pink haired boy had gone. How did he disappear so fast?
Valentine looked over at the blue haired man, as the man looked at him
“Is there something funny, sir?”
The blue haired man shook his head slightly, giving Valentine a slightly menacing glare.
“Yeah, ‘cus the guy you’re lookin’ for is right here.”
The man stepped out into the light a bit more, revealing more of his features. Valentine was confused.
“I.. I don’t think I understand?”
Valentine didn’t fully understand the severity of the situation, not knowing what this man was capable of.
“You’re Valentine.. Funny Valentine, right?”
Valentine tensed, not responding. The man continued, chuckling.
“Heh, yeah, I thought so.”
A cool blue colored figure with a singular sharp claw formed next to the man, and its wide set of teeth shone as it appeared.
“Formaggio. That’s my name.”
He stepped forward, as Valentine stepped back.
“You don’t need to know who I was sent by. All you need to know, Mister Valentine, is that you’re dying right here and right now.”
Valentine’s eyes went wide, as the man called Formaggio sprinted forward, and his Stand slashed at Valentine.
Finally! After months of procrastinating, I finally got the courage to make an account and post on here. I've been working on this fanfic for so long, and never showed it to anyone until now. I'm still a novice writer, but I hope the first two chapters worth of build up wasn't too slow paced. Things will go by a lot faster from this point on!
Enrico shouted, looking around frantically for him, having gotten lost in the crowds as he saw Valentine chase after a random kid. He only caught a glimpse of Valentine turning a corner, and then disappearing.
“Valentine? Where are you?”
He yelled out for him, terrified and worried. Was that pink haired kid a Stand user? Did Valentine know him? He had no idea, but either way it worried him.
Meanwhile, Valentine was in the hands of Formaggio, who was just slightly bigger than him, but small enough to hide away from where Enrico was calling for his lost friend. Valentine struggled in the hands of Formaggio, extremely confused.
“Wh-Who are you?! Is this your Stand ability? Shrinking peop-”
Valentine was squeezed tightly by Formaggio, cutting him off.
“Shut up! You’ll alert your damn buddy, and you don’t want me to give you a painful death, do ya?”
Formaggio whispered to him, keeping him shut as Enrico’s voice got further and further away. Formaggio looked at Valentine after Enrico had entirely disappeared, giving a malicious smile.
“Since I'm gonna kill you soon, I'll tell ya this. My Stand’s name is Little Feet , and it shrunk you when it slashed you. That’s its ability.”
Formaggio squeezed Valentine more, as he grew in size.
“Why a-are you doing this to me?!”
Valentine was able to squeak out, as Formaggio squeezed him again and picked something up. It was a glass bottle.
“ Why I’m doin’ this to ya isn’t important. All I want is some info outta ya, and then I'll give you a nice quick death.”
Valentine shrunk more as Formaggio threw him into a glass bottle, and then grew just big enough to where he couldn’t get out of the bottle. Valentine tried to hit the sides of the bottle in an attempt to break out, but Formaggio shook it, making Valentine dazed.
“Hittin’ the bottle won’t work, you damn fool! You’re not even a few inches high, your fists wont do shit!”
Formaggio laughed as he dug around in his pants pocket, and pulled out a small animal. It was a cat. An extremely tiny cat.
“God, I’ve been plannin’ this torture method for months, and only now have I been able to execute it right.”
Formaggio stuck the cat into the bottle with Valentine, and the cat grew in size. Bigger than Valentine, but just small enough to still move around in the bottle itself.
“Cats love to hunt, and you’re a damn perfect meal for it.”
Valentine pushed his back up against the edge of the bottle, as the cat arched its back and approached him, ready to pounce on him and eat him.
“Mister Valentine, if ya don’t wanna get eaten by a cat, I'd suggest you start to spill everything you got to me. Like, y’know, what’s your friends Stand? What’s his name? What’s he like? What are his weaknesses?”
Valentine glared at Formaggio from inside the bottle,
“My morals are utterly unclouded,”
Valentine started, D4C manifesting next to him, just as tiny as he was.
“Which means I won’t tell a bleak soul like yourself a damn thing.”
“Suit yourself. I’ll find out anyway after you’re dead.”
The cat leaped at Valentine immediately, hissing, claws at the ready. Valentine slid underneath the cat and disappeared, the cats face slamming against the end of the bottle as it missed him. Formaggio blinked a few times and shook his head.
Formaggio looked around for Valentine in the bottle, trying to find out where he went.
“ Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap .”
A voice came from behind Formaggio, who jumped, not daring to look behind himself.
“That’s what I call my Stand, Mister Formaggio .”
Valentine was fully grown, back to his normal size, the slash mark that was inflicted on him by Little Feet having disappeared. Formaggio immediately turned around and quickly moved away from Valentine.
“What the Hell?! H-How did you reverse the effects of my Stand?!”
Formaggio was shaken by the answer, having no idea what Valentine’s Stand was capable of. He didn’t care, and immediately brought Little Feet out again.
“Damn you! I’ll kill your cheeky ass!”
He yelled out in rage, Little Feet lunging forward and slashing at Valentine wildly. Valentine tried to use D4C to block as many of the slashes as he could, attempting to dodge any others. A scratch formed on Valentine’s face, as a small streak of blood ran down it. Formaggio smiled devilishly,
“Hah! I got you, you’re mine now!”
Valentine began to shrink again, and by instinct he ran past Formaggio, who reached out to grab him.
“It’s no use, you won’t get away from me so easily this time!”
He picked up Valentine, who yelled out one more time.
“Don’t try to yell, nobodies gonna come to save you, Mister Valentine! I have the last laugh now!”
Formaggio laughed loudly,
“I ain’t even gonna bother getting info out of ya anymore. I’ll just squish you right now!”
Valentine looked at him, stone faced. Formaggio seemed confused and frustrated.
“Hey! Why aren’t ya screaming or somethin’? Say something damnit!!”
He shook Valentine, who continued to glare at him.
“I don’t need to say anything, because I have someone who can speak for me.”
Formaggio heard a loud cough from behind him, staring face to face with Enrico and another Valentine. Formaggio let go of the smaller Valentine out of shock, who fell to the ground and ran off behind something.
“I was able to use D4C at the last second to try and get myself to you. I’m glad I had another Valentine to distract him for a while before he realized my ability.”
“Who has the last laugh now?”
Formaggio had a scared look on his face, backing off immediately, stuck in a corner. Enrico took a step forward, and decided to be the one to ask questions.
“Formaggio, was it?”
He cleared his throat,
“Formaggio, I want you to answer us honestly. If you do, we’ll let you go off with a warning.”
Enrico got close to Formaggio and kneeled down,
“And if you don’t, I’m not afraid to use you as ransom to gain answers, understand?”
Woah!! I didn't expect a positive response from my last chapters, thank you!
I'm not good describing fight scenes, which is why most of these battles will be strategy related.
Chapter 5: Man In The Mirror (Part 1)
Enrico and Valentine had been sitting in their home, contemplating what had happened that day.
“There really are other Stand users.”
Valentine mumbled to himself, both of them sitting down at the kitchen table, a coffee in his hand. Valentine had begun to grow fond of coffee.
“I know it was a good thing that we spared that Formaggio guy and let him off with a warning, but.. Was it really the safest thing to do? All he told us was that he was sent by something called a Passione , but nothing else..”
Valentine looked at Enrico, who was looking down, lost in thought.
“..I don’t know. But, either way, we need to keep our guard up. If he was after us, then that means there’s plenty more that wish to chase us down. That probably means that this Passione might just be an organization of sorts as well.”
Enrico looked at Valentine, whose expression was soft with a hint of melancholy.
“But-.. But why?”
Valentine was acting like a confused child whose parents just explained to him that his fish had died, asking questions neither of them knew the answer to, or neither of them knew how to explain. Enrico just shook his head, looking down again.
“I really don’t know, Valentine.”
He sighed, just as confused as Valentine.
“But, I know one thing we can do to get answers.”
Valentine looked hopeful, perking up at that.
“If more Stand users come after us, then that means they all have a connection to something bigger, which then means that we can get answers out of them to figure out the reason behind this all.”
Enrico looked at Valentine again, who seemed happier now.
“Yeah, you’re right, Pucci! Then, we can go back to living all quietly, yeah?”
Enrico smiled and nodded,
“Of course. I hope so.”
Valentine smiled back and took a big gulp of his coffee, immediately spitting some out and coughing hysterically, fanning off his mouth with his hand frantically.
“GAAHK!! H-HOT! HOT! I-I FORGOT TO LET IT COOL!!”
Enrico and Valentine had been investigating where they had first met Formaggio, looking to see if maybe he left behind any clues. Valentine threw around a few trash bags in the alley, but Enrico told him to stop because it started to stink.
“Did you find anything, Pucci? I couldn’t find a thing..”
Valentine said, feeling pretty bummed.
“Not yet. I guess he was smart enough not to leave anything behind.”
Valentine let out a disappointed sigh, crouched down in the alleyway with trash littered around him. Enrico looked at him, feeling bad.
“There’s no need to get sad over it Valentine. I understand you want answers to your past, but what if this guy doesn’t have any to begin with?”
“..I don’t know. I’m just desperate for some closure.”
Enrico nodded, his eyes catching something from what little light shone through the alleyway. He walked over near the trash and reached into it. Valentine looked confused,
“What’s wrong, Pucci? Didn’t you tell me not to dig in the trash?”
Enrico ignored him and pulled out what looked to be an unnaturally shiny mirror. Valentine was even more confused than before.
“Why’d you pull out a mirror from the trash?”
Enrico blinked a few times and sighed,
“I, ah.. Thought it might’ve been something important.”
He said, looking at the mirror a bit more,
“But, don’t you think it’s odd that such a clean looking mirror was here in the trash?”
Valentine thought for a moment, and shrugged.
“Maybe it’s a self cleaning mirror!”
He laughed, not thinking about it any longer and standing up.
“But, like you said Pucci, it looks like there’s nothing here. How about we go to that bakery and get some of those macaron things? I’m going to get a headache if I think about this stuff for too long.”
He laughed again, scratching the back of his neck. Enrico looked at Valentine and nodded,
“Yeah, that sounds nice.”
He said, looking back at the mirror and freezing in place. There was a man in the mirror. There. Was a man. In. The mirror.
“Valentine! Look out-!”
He turned around pointing at where he saw the man, but there was nobody there. Valentine tilted his head,
Valentine looked around for a moment, not seeing anyone.
“..Look out for what?”
Enrico looked back at the mirror. The man was getting closer. Not closer to Valentine, but closer to Enrico himself. He was frozen in place, having no idea what was happening. It was a Stand attack. It hadn’t even been a day, and there was already another Stand user after them.
“Pucci.. Are you okay?”
Valentine asked him, very obviously concerned, Enrico stepped backwards, dropping the mirror.
“G-Get away from there, Valentine! There’s someone there! It’s a Stand user! There’s another Stand user after us!”
Enrico pointed in his direction, and his arm started to disappear. Valentine went wide eyed, and Enrico was frozen in place once more. Enrico’s entire body was disappearing at a rapid rate, and he tried to move, but just couldn’t. Valentine immediately ran to Enrico, trying to reach out and grab him, but it was too late. Enrico had vanished from this world, and was dragged into another.
Chapter 6: Man In The Mirror (Part 2)
Enrico tried to reach out to grab Valentine’s hand, but had completely missed it, instead almost falling forward. Where was he? What just happened? He looked around. It was the alleyway he was just in, but.. Why did it seem off somehow?
A noise was heard from nearby, and Enrico shot up.
“Who’s there? Where are you?”
He questioned, looking around quickly to try and spot who had made that noise, his eyes landing on a brown haired man, hair tied in a few floppy pigtails in a white, cushion textured outfit.
“I’m right here, Enrico.”
The man paused for a moment, thinking.
"Ah.. Wait, do you priests go by Father, or something?"
Enrico backed up, and the man just shook his head.
"Oh, who am I kidding? Your name won't matter when your dead."
Enrico got into a stance, prepared to take out his Stand.
"Who are you? Why are you after me?"
The man just gave him a look, seeming almost bored with this confrontation.
"Illuso. I don’t know why I’m after you, but I could really care less. It’s a surprise how Formaggio didn’t take care of you and your friend earlier.”
Illuso’s Stand formed next to him. It was a grey and black Stand wearing a leotard missing its upper chest piece, while yellow bolts littered its body.
“This is my Stand, Man In The Mirror . Remember it well, Enrico Pucci, because I’ll make sure it’s the last thing you remember before you die.”
Enrico got into a stance, ready to fight.
“ Whitesnake !”
He yelled out, but his Stand didn’t appear next to him. Illuso laughed,
“ Whitesnake !”
Enrico yelled out again, but once more his Stand didn’t appear. Illuso put his hands on his hips,
“Do you really not know how my Stand works at all? I’d expect someone like you to understand it by now.”
Enrico looked at Illuso, slightly terrified.
“You’re inside of a mirror currently. More importantly, you’ve been dragged into my mirror world. Your Stand is out there in the real world, probably just as lost as you.”
Illuso began to run towards Enrico,
“And just as defenseless too!”
Valentine almost fell forward when he tried to grab out for Enrico, missing him entirely. He looked around, checking the spot where he was, looking everywhere for Enrico. He panicked. What just happened? Where did Enrico go? He looked around before seeing Whitesnake manifest in front of him. Why was Enrico’s Stand here? Did this mean Enrico was nearby? Valentine approached the Stand, which looked confused.
“.. Whitesnake ?”
Valentine questioned the Stand, as its pale white eyes focused in on him. The Stand couldn’t speak, so it tried to motion where its user went, desperately trying to find a way for Valentine to save him. Valentine put a hand on his chin as he tilted his head, watching the Stand play charades with him, picking up a mirror and making hand gestures towards it.
Valentine squinted at the Stand, as it tried harder to convey its emotions.
“Mirror… Mirror walking.. Walking mirror? Living mirror?”
Whitesnake nodded his head as he continued to hand gesture, trying to tell Valentine that he was getting close.
“..You like to look at yourself in the mirror?”
Whitesnake frowned, shaking its head. This may take a while.
Enrico quickly dodged Illuso’s Stand, watching it try to slash at him a few times. Enrico wasn’t the most nimble however, as his priest garb got slightly slashed open by the Stand. He stumbled back, feeling over his chest, luckily not too injured. Illuso huffed,
“Damn.. Even without your Stand, you’re pretty good.”
Enrico panted slightly, knowing he won't be able to go on like this for long. He prayed Valentine figured out what was going on, and used D4C to somehow lure Illuso’s Stand out into the real world. Enrico took a good look at his surroundings for a moment, realizing everything was mirrored and reversed. Illuso really had dragged him into a mirror world.
“But, without your Stand, you’re just a regular guy.”
Illuso said, standing up straight as his Stand got into a stance, ready to lunge forward and attack again.
“And since you’re just a regular guy, it makes you weak against me! You play under my mirror world’s rules now!”
His Stand slashed at Enrico, who tried his hardest to move back and forth, dodging the attacks, quickly getting hit by Man In The Mirror . Enrico had been hit in the chest, hard enough to knock him back and leave just a small trail of blood out and down his mouth.
“See? You’re nothing compared to me. Without your Stand, you’re practically an ant against a magnifying glass.”
Enrico stumbled back, panting heavily. This isn’t going to end well.
“You like getting mirrors for Christmas! Is that it?”
Whitesnake shook its head, holding the mirror and mimicking the man who was attacking Enrico, trying its hardest to get his point across.
“No, No.. Uhm.. You really like..”
Valentine tapped his foot, hands on his head as he thought about it more.
“You.. You.. Aha! I get it now!”
He perked up, and Whitesnake looked at him with hope shining in its white eyes.
“Pucci is scared of mirrors, and you’re trying to help him overcome his fear!”
Whitesnake slumped and facepalmed, shaking its head. It tried to perk up again to show Valentine what it was trying to get at, but quickly stumbled back as its user got hurt, blood trailing down its mouth. Valentine jumped at that, seeming to understand that the current situation is a bit more dire.
“Where’s Pucci? He must be getting attacked by an enemy Stand user right now! Whitesnake , just hurry up and show me!”
Valentine pleaded with the injured Stand, as it pointed at the mirror. It took a bit for Valentine to process.
“..You mean.. He’s inside the mirror?”
The Stand nodded quickly, as Valentine tried to think on it more.
“Then how do we get him out? We need to find a way to get him out!”
Illuso approached Enrico, grabbing the collar of his shirt and pulling him up to face him.
“At this point, you have almost no chance of winning.”
Illuso began, keeping a good grip on Enrico.
“..But to be fair, I think I’ll make a deal with you. Maybe if you cooperate well enough with me, I’ll let you live and can even make you an honorary member of our team.”
Enrico gulped, not knowing at all what sort of twisted ideas pooled inside this guys head.
“Formaggio told me that you and your friend got some real freaky Stand abilities. Said you threatened him with your own.. Big mistake on your part for letting him live, I’ll tell you that. Said you can steal things from people. More importantly, steal Stands.”
Enrico blinked a few times, and his eyes widened. Illuso couldn’t be thinking what he thought he was.. Right?
“You see where this is going, don’t you, Enrico? I want you to steal your friends Stand. He’s got a marvelous ability that’d make my own invincible, and if you steal his Stand and give it to me.. Hell, maybe I could overtake the Boss with it.”
Illuso threw Enrico to the ground, who stumbled back to his feet.
“Steal Valentine’s Stand for me. I’ll let you out of the mirror world to do so, but if you try anything you can kiss yours and your friends asses goodbye.”
And with that, Enrico was transported back to the real world, with Valentine and Whitesnake both panicking to each other. Valentine spotted Enrico and smiled,
“Pucci! Did you defeat the Stand user? What happened in there? Are you oka-“
Whitesnake slashed its hand across the back of Valentine’s head, and a disc had formed in its hand. Valentine dropped down immediately, supposedly unconscious. Enrico took the disc from Whitesnake , and Illuso brought him back to the mirror world. Enrico didn't look phased by it at all, as if he didn’t regret his actions. Illuso, however, looked at joyous as ever once Enrico came back with the Stand.
“So you really did it, huh? You really betrayed your friend like that?”
“I should show you to the Boss sometime. He’d make you a capo immediately.”
He chuckled, walking toward Enrico, who gave him a glare.
“What’s with that look, Enrico? What, are you regretting your actions now?”
Enrico shook his head,
“I regret nothing. But I wouldn’t say I betrayed my friend.”
Illuso raised an eyebrow, but quickly panicked watching Enrico shove the disc into his face. Illuso stepped back, eyes wide with fear as Valentine’s Stand formed next to him. Enrico looked almost out of it for a moment, as if he was in pain for using the Stand, before running towards Illuso, using D4C to slash at him, leaving a slight gash in Illuso’s chest. Illuso fell back, and tried to crawl away from Enrico.
“N-No! Get back!”
Illuso blabbered out, covering his chest in an attempt to stop the blood. Enrico looked down at him, D4C preparing for another attack.
“Send me back to the real world. Now.”
Valentine let out a slight grumble, shifting around for a moment. He sat up, putting a hand on his head. What had happened? The last thing he remembered seeing was Enrico’s face, and then pitch black.
“Oh, so you’re awake finally. That’s good. I was afraid that you wouldn’t for a good bit.”
Valentine looked around before realizing he was back in Enrico’s home, laying on the couch. He quickly scanned the room before seeing Enrico walk into the living room with two cups, one filled with tea and the other filled with coffee.
“P-Pucci? What happened? Weren’t you being attacked by a Stand user? And..”
His eyes looked over Enrico for a moment, before seeing a bandage on his head. Valentine pointed at it.
“..What happened to your head?”
Enrico was silent for a moment, blowing on his tea and sipping some of it before speaking.
“The Stand user is gone now, I can promise you that.”
Enrico knew what really happened. He beat that Illuso to a pulp before leaving. He had gotten power hungry when he used Valentine’s Stand for that short time. Never again, Enrico thought to himself. He can never do something like that ever again, not after knowing how much it hurt inhabiting such a powerful Stand. Valentine’s ability had untapped power, and he couldn’t let him find that out.
“My head is just fine. I simply got a little hurt, now drink up. I made coffee for you.”
He slid the cup towards Valentine, who didn’t hesitate to pick it up and mimic Enrico’s actions by blowing on it before drinking it. There was silence between the two of them for a good bit.
He looked at Enrico, who was looking down into his cup of tea.
“I think I have an idea on who’s sending these people after us.”
Valentine seemed happy to hear this,
“Then who is it? Speak up!”
Enrico didn’t look the most enthusiastic about this information.
“..From what I heard, he just goes by ‘Boss’. And by the clues I was given, I can without a doubt say that we might just be dealing with a mafia organization.”
Valentine thought for a moment, and froze.
“A.. A m-mafia? What does a mafia want with us?”
Enrico looked up, and in front of him. Staring at nothing.
“It may have something to do with our Stand abilities.. More importantly, my Stand ability.”
“What do they want with our Stands? I don’t understand this at all..”
Enrico put down his cup of tea and took out his phone,
“I don’t know what they want with our Stands either, but we need to find out who’s sending these Stand users, and fast.”
He looked down at his phone,
“And I think I might know where we need to go next.”
Happy Labor Day everyone!
Hope your Mondays are going well so far!
Chapter 8: Baby Face and White Album (Part 1)
Enrico and Valentine had both packed two bags full of some minuscule belongings. Enrico had packed a spare change of clothes, his phone, and a toothbrush. Valentine on the other hand only brought a flag. Enrico found it strange why Valentine decided to bring an American flag with him. Enrico didn’t even know he had one. Either way, neither of them said anything about it as they both got on a bus to the nearest airport. Valentine sat near the window, watching the scenery go by. Enrico sat on the other end of the seat, testing out his phone and what it was capable of.
“I never knew automobiles these days were so.. So..”
Valentine tried to find the words, but Enrico helped him with that.
“Yeah, advanced is a good word for it.”
They were both silent for a bit, before Valentine shook a little, clutching the sides of his arms.
“Geez.. Did it get colder in here?”
Enrico looked up, and around the bus.
“..Yeah. It did.”
Enrico had a concerned look on his face, realizing something was wrong. There was nobody else on the bus except the two of them, and Enrico was fairly certain that they may have passed the airport.
“Valentine, did you happen to see who the bus driver was?”
Valentine gave him a confused look.
“No.. Why do you ask?”
Enrico looked out the window, and realized that the bus was picking up tremendous speed. He immediately looked to the front of the bus and stood up.
“Who’s driving this bus? Who are you?”
The thing that looked back at Enrico wasn’t human. Immediately it hit Enrico. They were being attacked by a Stand user, maybe even two. The purple humanoid Stand laughed wildly, practically cackling.
“You two are REALLY slow for a couple o’ mean Stand users!”
Valentine perked up, and looked at the front of the bus too, watching the purple spiked Stand not even pay attention to the road. It was dressed in the bus drivers outfit the entire time.
“Either way, you guys are DEAD MEAT! You don’t stand a chance against the Babyface White Album combo!”
Immediately, something hit, or more like it attaches itself to the back of the bus. The bus’s temperature dropped significantly, as Valentine looked back to see what was there. Ice formed on the back edges of the bus, as a man's face in a white suit showed himself. His loud voice echoed from behind the window.
“YOUR GUYS’S OUTFITS REALLY PISS ME OFF! I CAN’T WAIT TIL’ YOU TWO HURRY UP AND DIE!”
The purple Stand, Babyface , immediately spoke up.
“Oi, you big oaf! Didn’t Melone say we aren’t s’posed to kill them?”
The man creating the ice immediately perked up, and his face scrunched as he banged against the frozen window, cracking it.
“EH??!! WHAT DID YOU JUST CALL ME?! I’LL KILL YOU TOO IF YOU DON’T SHUT THAT TRAP OF YOURS!”
Enrico and Valentine sort of watched them both bicker back and forth. Enrico leaned in close to Valentine and whispered something in his ear.
“Valentine, I think I know how we can get out of here. We wait until these two aren’t paying attention, and-“
Enrico was cut off by the sound of the window smashing in, the man in the suit immediately entering the bus, ice quickly forming around him. Valentine shivered. Babyface just facepalmed,
“Aww man! You didn’t have to break the window!.. Oh, whatever. Let’s just focus on beating these guys up first!”
The man in the white suit immediately got into a stance, as if he was about to ice skate in their direction.
“I’M READY TO SMASH THEIR FACES IN BEYOND RECOGNITION!!”
Valentine and Enrico looked at each other, and they both nodded in unison. Enrico quickly spoke up,
“I’ll take the purple one, you take the ice guy.”
The white suited man immediately spoke up, letting out a yell of frustration.
“MY NAME’S GHIACCIO, DAMNIT!!”
Ice formed underneath him as he skated towards Valentine, who brought out D4C almost immediately before rushing towards him, letting out a flurry of slashes and punches. None of them seemed to phase Ghiaccio as he immediately tackled Valentine and tried to throw him out the broken bus window. Valentine braced himself against it, trying hard to not let the pressure blow him out. But without hesitation, Ghiaccio skated his way to him again, and they both flew out the back of the bus.
Chapter 9: Babyface and White Album (Part 2)
Enrico watched Valentine and Ghiaccio fly out of the bus, and he prayed that Valentine would be okay as he focused his attention back onto the purple Stand before him. Whitesnake formed quickly next to him. Babyface practically licked its lips,
“That’s a REAL nice Stand you got there, Enrico! It’s a REAL shame that I won’t be able to see its face anymore after I MINCE IT UP!”
It cackled as it made its way towards Enrico, Whitesnake immediately reaching out to punch it as Babyface touched a small portion of its hand. A square chunk of flesh flew off of Whitesnake’s hand, along with Enrico’s. He Immediately recoiled back, clenching his damaged hand. Babyface laughed a bit more,
“My ability can practically disintegrate your body parts! You’re dead, dead, DEAD, DEAD!”
Enrico looked at the front of the bus, and knew exactly what he needed to do. Currently, he was up against a Stand that he couldn’t underestimate.
Meanwhile, Ghiaccio barely rolled across the concrete road as he got back up onto his feet, ready to freeze Valentine over, who was currently laying face down on the concrete road.
“OI! GET YOUR ASS UP! I’M NOT DONE BEATING YOUR SCRAWNY ASS!!”
Valentine struggled to stand up, stumbling as he got on his feet. He reached up to his face, as blood became smeared on his glove. His nose was bleeding heavily, and the fall from the truck knocked a tooth or two out. He wasn’t as phased as he should’ve been by this.
“LOOK AT ME WHEN I TALK TO YOU, ASSHOLE!!”
Valentine perked up, turning to face Ghiaccio, who looked pissed beyond belief. Valentine sighed slightly and reached inside his pink coat.
“You know, I don’t really use my Stand ability to use in battle very often. I like having a fair fight, you see?”
He pulled out an American flag out from inside his coat,
“But, in situations like these where I could possibly die, I usually am left with no other choice. I mean, look what you did to my face!”
Ghiaccio just stared, and got into position, ready to ram into him again.
“THE HELL ARE YOU BLABBERING ON ABOUT?! THAT FLAG WON'T HELP YOU DO SHIT!!”
Valentine threw the flag up into the air, as he watched Ghiaccio rapidly approach him, ice forming near him even faster. Before any ice could reach his feet, he disappeared underneath the descending flag, which froze over immediately as it hit the ground. Ghiaccio looked around frantically, kicking at the frozen flag, trying to look for Valentine who had supposedly vanished.
“Hey, you shouldn’t be disrespecting the flag like that you know.”
Ghiaccio turned around immediately, to face Valentine whose face was untouched, and was also holding a pistol of sorts.
“What do you know? This Valentine had a gun.”
Ghiaccio once again got into position,
“YOU DUMBASS! THAT GUN WON’T DO SHIT TO ME!”
Valentine attempted to move back, but couldn’t. He looked down to see that his feet were frozen in place. He didn’t seem to phased, as he took aim.
“We’ll see about that.”
As Ghiaccio approached him, Valentine shot at him twice.
“ WHITE ALBUM, GENTLY WEEPS !”
The bullets Valentine fired immediately redirected themselves, and bounced off of ice that had frozen up the air around him. Valentine’s eyes widened. What kind of Stand was this?
“MY STAND CAN FREEZE THINGS RAPIDLY, INCLUDING THE AIR ITSELF, MAKING YOUR BULLETS USELESS! I CAN JUST REDIRECT THEM BACK TO YOU!”
One of the bullets Valentine fired bounced off of a piece of floating ice, and immediately redirected itself, hitting him right in the side. He recoiled, using a free hand to grab onto the wounded area.
“THIS TIME, I’LL MAKE SURE THE BULLET HITS YOUR HEART!”
The second bullet bounced off of a few pieces of ice a few times, before immediately flinging itself towards Valentine, who blocked the bullet with his hand. His hand shook in pain, as he clenched it into a fist.
“YOU’RE LEAVING YOURSELF WIDE OPEN YOU IDIOT! HURRY UP AND DIE ALREADY!!”
Ghiaccio yelled, immediately running after Valentine, who glared at him.
“..More like you left yourself open.”
A gunshot could be heard going off, and Ghiaccio immediately fell forward as he yelled out.
“WH-WHAT THE HELL?!!”
He could feel a sharp pain in his back, having left part of himself uncovered from using his White Album ’s ability so early on in the fight itself. He immediately covered himself using his Stand, which didn’t change the fact that he was still injured. He looked back to see another Valentine, standing there with almost the same gun as the injured Valentine right in front of him. Ghiaccio looked very obviously confused.
“WHAT KIND OF STAND ABILITY IS THIS?!”
He yelled, as another gunshot could be heard, hitting Ghiaccio in the leg. He was able to stop it, but he turned to see yet another Valentine, this one holding an American flag in his other hand.
“ Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap . Let up your attack, and maybe I won’t bring in more of myself to open fire.”
Ghiaccio glared at him,
“ WHITE ALBUM, GENTLY WEE -“
He was cut off by a fourth Valentine punting him in the back of the head harshly,
“You left yourself open again. I was hoping you’d put up more of a fight, but your arrogance seems to blind you.”
Ghiaccio’s Stand faded off of him, as he was completely knocked out, the ice around him dispersing. The other three Valentines had disappeared at this point, as the new one simply left Ghiaccio there and walked off.
“Now I need to find that bus.”
Enrico was completely defenseless against this Stand, especially knowing it was an automatic long-distance one he had no way of finding the user, and with the bus still moving at such a high speed there was no way Valentine would be able to catch up to him and help. The Stand chuckled as it hopped around the bus, teasing Enrico, waiting for him to make another move.
“WELL? Hurry it up, ENRICO! I’ve been getting pretty hungry, and I think you’d be a perfect MEAL for me!”
Enrico looked at the Stand, and then at the front of the bus. The wheel. He needed to get to the steering wheel. Whitesnake was the one to step forward, as Enrico tried his best to calculate where he needed to go to avoid Babyface ’s attacks. Despite Whitesnake not being the fastest, it was still faster than Enrico and could have a chance to avoid the enemy Stand and drive the bus. Babyface immediately looked bored, as it started to approach Whitesnake .
“You took too long! Time to DIE!”
Whitesnake and Enrico both dodged Babyface , Whitesnake having ran in the opposite direction of Enrico and running towards the front of the bus. Babyface didn’t seem to really care much about Whitesnake , as it focused its attention on Enrico.
“Sending your Stand away from you was a real BAD idea!”
It laughed as it immediately tried attacking Enrico, who was doing everything in his power to run towards the end of the bus and avoid the Stand. It laughed wildly,
“You IDIOT! You’ve cornered yourself!”
Enrico didn’t really say anything as he gestured to the front of the bus. Babyface looked confused, as it turned around to see Whitesnake having already sat down in the front driver's seat, and turning the bus over, flipping it. From the speed the bus was driving at, the bus rolled across the road, throwing around everyone inside the bus. Once the bus stopped rolling, it skidded across the road, and eventually halted. Out of a broken window came Enrico, crawling out, his Stand having protected him for most of the crash. He was still fairly injured however, his head bleeding slightly. That was close. Way too close. He had to find Valentine as soon as possible, realizing that these Stand attacks were only going to get worse from here on.
“Oh dear.. It seems my Junior was just defeated.”
Melone let out a slightly disappointed sigh, closing his computer.
“That means Ghiaccio was beaten as well. That’s a shame.”
A man walked out from the darkness of the room, and put a hand on Melone’s shoulder, who jumped.
“These other Stand users seem more threatening than I originally suspected.”
Melone looked over his shoulder to see Risotto, his face scrunching up slightly in annoyance.
“Jeez! At least warn me when you’re gonna do something! You’re way too quiet.”
Risotto ignored him, and sat in a chair away from the couch Melone was sitting on. His red eyes seemed to have been focused elsewhere.
“We shouldn’t be too worried about them, however. Prosciutto and Pesci will take care of them. I believe they’re already on a plane as we speak.”
Melone rested his chin on his hand, raising an eyebrow.
“You sent Pesci out with him? What’s his Beach Boy gonna do, hook them to death?”
Melone snickered to himself, and Risotto shot him a glare, making him immediately tense and shut his mouth.
“Pesci and Prosciutto are a more menacing pair than you think, Melone. You’ve seen them in action yourself.”
Risotto looked off into the distance again,
“All we need is to make sure those two Stand users don’t make it here to Italy anyhow. I wouldn’t be too worried.”
Chapter ten already, along with over 10,000 words..
I may or may not have a problem.
Chapter 11: Grateful Dead and Beach Boy (Part 1)
It took Enrico and Valentine at least another day for them to get to the airport, both of them having lost what little luggage they had on that crashed bus. One of Enrico’s hands were bandaged up, along with his head. Valentine on the other hand didn’t have a scratch on him.
“Do you think it’s the safest thing to get on one of those flying machines, Pucci? What if another Stand user attacks us on there?”
Enrico shook his head, as they both began to make their way into the airport.
“I don’t think a Stand user would try to attack us on a plane of all things. It’s a public place, and it would completely give their position away.”
Valentine scratched the back of his neck, and shrugged a little.
“I guess.. But, it still worries me.”
They both began to board the plane, Valentine looking absolutely astonished by the technology. As they walked down the aisle of the plan, Valentine tapped Enrico’s shoulder,
“This new technology is amazing!”
He said in astoundment, Enrico finding the look on his face amusing. They both found their seats, and Valentine claimed the seat nearest to the window immediately. He looked out of it, finding the view amazing even though the plane itself didn’t take off yet. Enrico sat right next to him, picking up a random magazine he had spotted and indulging himself in it. Obviously the contents of the magazine weren't too interesting, but what more could you expect?
An hour or two had passed since they had gotten onto the plane. Enrico was fast asleep in his seat, tired from all that had happened. Valentine was still looking out the window, being enthralled in the view. He spotted a few birds in the distance while looking, immediately perking up and trying to shake Enrico awake.
He slightly shout whispered, continuing to try and shake Enrico up. But he didn't. He just lay there, silently. Valentine became worried, as he realized something. Enrico looked older, like he had just rapidly aged in seconds. Valentine looked around the plane, and saw that the other passengers were being affected the same way. A Stand attack. There was another Stand user on the place, and Valentine panicked. Valentine could care less about how he himself was being affected by this Stand, but he couldn’t live with himself if Enrico didn’t survive. Valentine could replace himself, but he couldn’t fully replace other people. He immediately stood from his seat, making his way into the aisle, realizing that the Stand’s power was already affecting him.
“Show yourself! I know there’s another Stand user here!”
No response. Valentine began to get frustrated and desperate, wanting to save his only friend, knowing there wouldn’t be much time left.
“Just show yourself already, damnit!”
Still no response. He was about to yell out again before he was cut off, something sharp stabbing him in his arm. He turned around to see a fish hook lodged into his arm, it gradually moving its way up his arm.
“Hah! You’re pretty dumb for leaving yourself wide open like that!”
Valentine looked back to see an oddly green haired man whose head practically merged into his neck.. Or, was it the other way around? Valentine couldn’t tell where the neck started and where the head ended. He was more focused on this man’s anatomy than the fishing hook lodged into his upper arm.
“Big bro is gonna be real proud of me when I kill you!”
As Valentine studied the man more and peeled his eyes away from his oddly shaped neck, he saw that there was a glass of ice in one hand, as he held the fishing rod in the other. Valentine felt the hook slowly move its way up his shoulder and neck now, immediately realising that this fishing rod was a Stand. The green haired man looked real cocky right now, and Valentine wanted to wipe that look off his face. A fishing rod for a Stand? It almost made him laugh. He immediately ran towards the man, who’s cocky look was taken over by one of fear.
“W-Wait! You’re not supposed to-”
Valentine brought out D4C , who lunged forward and punched the man in his face.. Or, did he hit his neck? Either way, it didn’t matter as the man flew back, his Stand slowly fading as the hook lodged into Valentine’s neck disappeared, his glass of ice falling onto the floor. Valentine took this chance for interrogation, making his way towards him and gripping onto his shirt.
“Who are you? Is there another Stand user here? Tell me how to make this aging process stop!”
He shook the green haired man, who looked more concerned about the glass of ice on the floor.
“P-Please! I d-don’t want any trouble!”
The man was more cowardly than Valentine had expected.
“M-My name is Pesci and my Stand is B-Beach Boy .”
Valentine gripped onto his shirt harder,
“So then, Pesci, are you the one causing all the passengers to age? Is that your Stand ability?”
He shook Pesci, who shook his head, neck, thing.
“N-No, no! My.. My big bro h-has the aging Stand! It’s c-called Grateful Dead !”
Valentine looked behind himself, immediately focusing onto the cockpit of the plane. That’s where the Stand user must’ve been. He threw Pesci to the side, standing up and making his way to the front of the plane, while Pesci immediately scurried over to the glass of ice. Valentine was going to save Enrico. Even if it took fifty of himself to die, he was going to save the only friend he had in this world.
Valentine reached over to grab a random passengers blanket, realizing how much this Grateful Dead Stand’s ability was affecting the rest of the plane. He then knew that Enrico didn’t have much time left, running his way to the cockpit. He threw the blanket over himself, and reappeared underneath it as a younger Valentine. He was prepared for a fight, reaching into his jacket and pulling out a pistol. Valentine was ready to kill. He burst into the cockpit of the plane, feeling himself start to age again as he saw a nicely dressed man with a glass of ice in his hand, just like that Pesci. His Stand turned its many eyes to look at Valentine, as the pilot seemed to either be passed out or dead completely.
“I was wondering how long it’d take you to figure me out.”
The man looked at Valentine, who was aging rapidly again. He then looked at his wrist, seemingly at a watch.
“You don’t have much time left, you know. This plane is about to crash in the next five minutes.”
Valentine didn’t seem to care. All he cared about was saving Enrico, and maybe even the passengers on the plane.
“You don’t seem too phased by the fact that your friend might already be dead.”
Valentine aimed his gun,
“I know he’s still alive, and I can save him. Your little brother already ratted you out too. You’re the Grateful Dead’s Stand user.”
He didn’t look surprised,
“Of course Pesci freaked out and told you. How like him..”
The man glanced behind Valentine, but only for a second.
“That’s right. I’m the user of Grateful Dead , Prosciutto. I’m surprised you’ve gotten this far, but I’m afraid you won’t be able to go any farther.”
Valentine felt a hook dig into his back, knocking him forward slightly.
“Haha! Nice job on distracting him, big bro! Now we can take him out together!”
Valentine looked back to see Pesci, who seemed to have aged only slightly due to Grateful Dead .
“Learn to shoot first and ask questions later, Funny Valentine.”
Prosciutto began to make his way towards Valentine, while Pesci’s Beach Boy dug itself deeper into his back and trailing up his spine. Valentine gripped onto his pistol and immediately shot twice, missing both times.
“Too late to shoot at me now. You and your friend are done for.”
The cockpit immediately started to flash red, as sirens all over the plane began to go off.
“Bold of you to assume I was aiming for you.”
Prosciutto glared at Valentine, and lunged forward with Grateful Dead .
“You bastard! You’ve doomed us!”
Valentine dodged Prosciutto’s attack and ran towards the end of the plane and past Pesci, who had been standing there stunned. Valentine grabbed onto the blanket he dropped earlier, and carried Enrico’s old and shriveled body. He immediately grabbed the nearest parachute and looked for somewhere to jump off the plane.
“You idiot, Pesci! What are you doing?! Get him!”
Prosciutto yelled at the terrified man, both of them panicking. Valentine on the other hand calmly opened the nearest door, leading outside of the plane. A burst of air overtook him, gripping on tightly to the unconscious Enrico in his arms.
“You damn mammoni , I’ll get him myself then!”
Prosciutto tried to run at Valentine, attempting to use his Stand to attack him, missing him by an inch as Valentine jumped out of the quickly descending plane.
I honestly just want to thank everyone reading my story. I never thought people would actually end up enjoying it, but I'm honestly so glad that you all like it so far, despite it being a little slow paced.
Chapter 13: Funny Valentine's Lament
Enrico and Valentine had finally gotten to Italy. They weren’t entirely sure where in Italy, but it was Italy. They were both wet and cold from falling into the middle of the ocean, having recently been found by a ship that had happened to find them. They were miserable. They both went through so much just to get here, but they didn’t even know where they were. Enrico’s wallet was completely soaked and Valentine didn’t have any money to begin with, so trying to buy new clothes was out of the question. Right now, they both looked like stupid, wet Americans to everyone else. Luckily for both of them, Enrico traveled a good bit and knew how to speak a few languages, so he was able to try and ask people around him what time it is and where this place was. From what Enrico had gathered, him and Valentine had both ended up on an island called Sardegna . So now they were broke, soaked, and stranded on a tiny island. They were both completely lost as they strolled down a nice pathway, a long silence between them. It was nice to have such silence. The past few days had been frantic and wild, so this nice walk was really what both of them needed. Maybe they had finally scared off the people that were after them.
“Are we stranded here?”
Valentine decided to speak up, looking off into the distance. Enrico just sighed.
“..We may be stuck here for a good while.”
Valentine crossed his arms and gripped onto them, and Enrico could see the slight grief and anxiety in his eyes.
“Is there something wrong, Valentine?”
There was more silence after he asked that, like Valentine was pondering over something.
“Yeah. Yeah, there is something wrong. Ever since I got here.. No, ever since I met you I always had a feeling that something wasn’t right.”
Valentine sat down on a nearby rock, slumping.
“Ever since I met you, strange things have been happening to us. Life threatening things. Are we just some kind of bad omen together? Were we even supposed to ever meet each other?”
Enrico looked away, staying silent.
“Pucci, I just want answers. I just want to know why I was sent here, and who I was. I never wanted to go to Italy and almost get assassinated four times in a row.”
Enrico nodded his head slightly, still not being able to maintain eye contact with Valentine.
“..I.. I want answers too. But, maybe they’ll come to us if we just wait..”
Valentine immediately shot a glare at Enrico,
He snapped at Enrico.
“You expect me to sit around in bumblefuck nowhere Sardegna , and wait for answers that might not even exist?”
Enrico was taken aback by Valentine’s response, having never expected a man like himself to use such language.
“I’m sorry, but what you’re telling me is going in one ear and out the other. You know this is complete and utter bullshit, Pucci.”
Valentine slumped back again and let out a sigh, going back to his usual demeanor.
“..I just need to be alone right now.”
Valentine’s voice shook as he looked like he was about to break down, looking down to the ground, at his feet.
“Just go away, please.”
Enrico couldn’t bring himself to argue with Valentine and did just as he told him to, and walked away, not even giving a glance back. He wasn’t sure where he was going, but he could care less.
Chapter 14: Metallica
Enrico had been walking for what seemed to have been a while, not sure where he was even more so than before. Valentine at this point was most likely far behind him, but he never bothered to go back. Enrico felt terrible. He believed that the creation of this universe was a mistake, and that this was his fault. And it was. All he wanted was to get revenge for a close friends death, yet it was all for nothing. This universe was nothing but a mocking reminder for him. Reminding him constantly of the new found regret he had for originally attaining heaven in the first place. Enrico gritted his teeth and kicked at the ground, kicking up dust, a few smaller rocks, and pebbles.
“You look frustrated with something, Enrico Pucci.”
Enrico looked up immediately, not seeing anyone there. He looked around some more, not seeing anybody.
“You’re also alone. That makes you a vulnerable target.”
Despite hearing a voice, Enrico couldn’t spot a single person in the vicinity. He concluded that it must’ve been a Stand user. But, why now of all times?
“I haven’t seen your Stand yet, but I've been told it’s.. Interesting. A Stand that can steal other Stands, it fascinates yet frightens me just by thought alone. I wonder if it has any sentience.”
As Enrico looked around, a man seemed to have appeared out of nowhere behind him. He stepped back, looking over the black irised man.
“I would choose your next actions carefully if I were you. Unlike the others, I won’t kill you. But if you don’t cooperate, I won’t hesitate to cause you pain.”
Enrico continued to stay weary, prepared to fight if need be.
“Who are you? Were you sent by that Passione organization?”
The man kept a stone cold glare on him.
“Did I give you permission to ask questions?”
Enrico felt a sharp pain in his left cheek, as pins and needles started to appear inside his skin, ripping through it. He practically crumbled to the ground, almost yelling out in pain.
“I told you, I won’t hesitate.”
Enrico looked up at the man, terrified. Was this the man’s Stand ability? Summoning objects inside of people’s bodies? No, it couldn’t have been something as simple as that. There must’ve been more to it.
“You’ve just put yourself on a thin line, Enrico Pucci. Answer some of my questions, and do as I say. Maybe I’ll let you survive this if you cooperate nicely.”
The man sat down on a rock and put his head in his hands, looking as calm as ever.
“Where’s your friend? I believe his name’s Funny Valentine. You wouldn’t happen to know his Stand ability, would you?”
Enrico kept a stone cold glare on him, not saying a word. Not needing to say anything really.
“Giving the silent treatment I see. You think keeping your mouth shut will do any good?”
Enrico continued to stay silent, watching the man approach him with a fairly annoyed look on his face.
“And I was thinking of using you to overthrow the Boss. Whatever, he’ll still reward us once I kill you and that Valentine-”
The man was cut off by a gunshot, a wound being formed in his arm.
“Wh-What in the..?!”
Enrico immediately perked up, hope filling his eyes.
He yelled ou, spotting the curly blonde standing there with a pistol in his hand. The enemy, however, gripped onto his injured arm and glared at Valentine.
“But.. I-I thought..-”
Enrico was cut off.
“How? How did I not hear you approach me?!”
Valentine stepped closer to the currently injured man,
“My footsteps are silent. It’s a talent of mine.”
The man’s cold glare didn’t let up on Valentine,
“ Metallica! ”
He yelled, as what looked to be small particles of metal floated up from the ground and formed into sharp scalpels, lunging straight to Valentine.
“ D4C !”
He yelled quickly, the pastel pink and blue Stand forming and blocking a few of the scalpels, one scalpel lodging into the Stand’s arm, which in turn injured Valentine. Enrico tried to get up and help Valentine, but immediately fell forward, almost collapsing. This enemies Stand did something to him when those needles formed in his cheek. What did he do? He needed to find out quickly. The man continued to use metal particles and form more scalpels to propel towards Valentine. As Enrico tried to stand up the best he could, his brain swimming, he examined the metal particles form into scalpels. Metal. Iron. Iron . That’s when it hit Enrico, and he immediately stood up, almost falling over.
“V-Valentine! Stay away from him! His Stand ability.. He can manipulate iron! He takes the iron in your body an-”
Enrico was cut off as something sharp formed in his throat. He coughed a few times, before practically vomiting up blood and razorblades. He immediately fell to his knees, his mind spinning as he felt like passing out. Valentine immediately shot at the man again, to which the man dodged and vanished. No, he didn’t vanish. He was camouflaged. Valentine could see this blatantly, and knew immediately that he needed to be careful of this iron manipulation power. It was quiet, as Valentine just stood there, listening. Enrico tried to look up at him,
“Val-... Valen.. Tine… G-Get away..! He’s still-”
Valentine raised a hand to shut him up, needing to listen. From behind Valentine, metal slowly formed into scissors, and flew right to him. He quickly turned around to use D4C and slash away the scissors, catching one in his hand, making it bleed.
“It’s no use, Valentine.”
The voice of the man could be heard from nearby, taunting him.
“Give up. You’re putting up an unnecessary struggle, and I need your ability.”
Enrico tried to speak up again,
“D-Don’t listen to him..! H-He’s going to kill you!”
Enrico used whatever strength he had left to try and warn Valentine, attempting to stand up with what little power he had left in him before being caught in a chokehold by the invisible man, who was finally showing himself again.
“If you don’t listen to what I say Valentine, i’ll kill your friend.”
The man held a shard scalpel up to Enrico’s bloodied throat, as if he were about to slice it open. Valentine turned to look, his eyes widening.
“Like I said before, I need your ability Valentine. You could help me overthrow a very powerful man. If you wish for your friend to survive, do what I order you to do, understand?”
Valentine looked at Enrico, who had a pleading look in his eyes, as if he was telling him to just go with it for their sake. Valentine looked back at the man and nervously nodded.
“Perfect. Now listen close, the man i’m going to send you after originally sent me and my squad after you.. However the others forgot they weren’t supposed to kill you. Besides that, this man is the boss of Passione , a powerful mafia organization that practically runs all of Italy. Nobody has seen this Boss before, but I know how to find him.”
Valentine perked up, recognizing the name Passione and remembering hearing something about a boss. So this Boss was the one sending people after him and Enrico, and this man's goal was to stop him. Valentine didn’t look too worried anymore, realizing something.
“I need you to-”
Complete and utter surprise was plastered onto both Enrico’s and the man’s faces, not expecting such a blunt response from Valentine.
The man holding the scalpel against Enrico’s throat loosened his grip around him, shocked.
“I said I’d help. If you had told me you wanted to get rid of the guy sending you after us, I wouldn’t have shot you!”
Valentine laughed a bit, crossing his arms.
“As long as it means me and Pucci can go back to our usual lives, I’ll do whatever it takes. Even if it means I don’t survive through it, as long as my friend is okay, I'm okay.”
Despite Valentine not feeling bad about anything, the man and Enrico definitely felt a little.. Awkward. The man cleared his throat and let go of Enrico, who slumped forward, still severely injured.
“..I suppose that encounter was pointless then. I didn’t think you had any interest in killing the Boss either.”
Valentine quickly made his way to Enrico, who looked like he was about to pass out, his blood changing into a gross yellow. Valentine picked up Enrico bridal style,
“That’s nice and all, but I think my friend is about to pass out.”
Valentine said very nonchalantly, as the man saw the state Enrico was in. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a phone, sighing.
Chapter 15: La Squadra
Not too long after the man, who introduced himself as Risotto Nero, called someone on his slightly old looking phone, a car drove up to them from a nearby road. The man driving the car had purple hair, and basically purple everything. Valentine couldn’t help but slightly cringe looking at the man’s outfit as he approached the car. It was more indecent than Risotto’s. The purple haired man seemed to have recognized Valentine as he placed Enrico’s unconscious body in the backseat, and sat next to him. The man turned to look at Valentine from the driver's seat,
“Heey~.. Aren’t you the guy that beat Ghiaccio? And that man, he beat my Junior! How funny it is to see you two.”
Risotto got into the front passenger seat, and immediately nudged the man.
“Just drive Melone. These two are nothing more than comrades right now, don’t try anything.”
Melone slightly glared at Risotto and rolled his eyes, moving back to start driving again.
“Soo..~ What are their names?”
“Melone, please .”
“What? Am I not allowed to know their names? Nobody ever told me who they were!”
Melone whined slightly, and Risotto looked almost embarrassed. Valentine didn’t see any issue with introducing himself and Enrico.
“I’m Funny Valentine, and that’s Father Pucci. I apologize about your Junior on Pucci’s behalf.”
Melone waved him off,
“Oh, please~. No need to be so formal about it. Besides, I can always make another one~!”
Melone gave Valentine a glance as he smirked and chuckled. Risotto quickly hit Melone in the arm and glared at him.
“O-Ow! What was that for?”
Enrico was completely dazed. How long had he been out for? His head was swimming as he slowly tried to sit up. Where was he? It was kind of dark.
“Aww man, he woke up!”
A man somewhere in the room said in disappointment, as he was heard getting smacked upside the head.
“Ow! Fuck, Risotto! Warn me next time!”
“You don’t deserve a warning. Be respectful, Formaggio.”
Enrico immediately felt threatened. Formaggio? That name.. He’s heard it before, and that wasn’t a good thing. He immediately sat up, his had spinning from him moving up too quick. His eyes tried to adjust to the darkness as he spotted all of the people him and Valentine had run into and fought on their way to Italy. The blue haired man, Formaggio, was sitting far on the other end of the room, with the black and red eyed man that had severely injured Enrico in the first place. On their left sat a purple haired man and a curly blue haired man, both looking at a computer. On their right, sat a blonde haired man and a man whose neck and head merged into one, slightly bandaged up. The green haired head-neck man wore a cast on one arm. He looked nervous. Next to them on the same couch, was Valentine and the man Illuso who looked just as injured as the green haired man. Apparently they’d been chatting before Enrico woke up.
“Ah! Pucci! Thank goodness you’re awake! Risotto really did a number on you.”
The grey haired man, Risotto, sort of looked away, and Formaggio laughed at his embarrassment, earning him another smack upside the head.
“V-Valentine? Who.. What are we.. A-Aren’t they all.. The enemy?”
Valentine scratched the back of his neck and chuckled lightly,
"Well, they aren't really enemies anymore! It turned out we all had the same goal from the very beginning."
Enrico looked around the room at all of the men that had almost killed them multiple times, amazed Valentine had trusted them so easily. Enrico gulped, but decided to go along with it. If none of them tried to hurt them from now on, he had no choice but to trust them. Valentine continued on with talking,
He clapped his hands together, standing up and beginning to go around and introduce everyone.
"This is Illuso, I believe you've met him though! Here is Prosciutto and Pesci, that's Melone and Ghiaccio. Over there's Formaggio and behind him is Risotto!"
This was a bit to take in. First of all, Enrico was pretty sure most of them were named after foods. Second of all, these were the people trying to kill both him and Valentine? Now that Enrico got a better look at them.. They weren’t really the most threatening. Well, except Risotto and maybe Prosciutto, but other than that they all looked sort of ridiculous. Enrico didn't say this out loud, but he still couldn’t help and look at the ludicrousy of their clothing.
“Valentine, you could’ve at least tried not to overwhelm him. The guy looks like you just told him his fish died.”
Illuso laughed a little, and Valentine slumped slightly.
“Ah! You’re right. Either way, these are our friends now! And, since you’re awake finally, Risotto was gonna tell us about how we can find the Boss!”
Valentine moves to sit next to Enrico, bouncing up and down slightly. He didn’t seem phased in the slightest from what happened. Was he not bothered by his unanswered questions anymore? Was Valentine simply trying to hide his anxieties and doubts behind his smile? Enrico couldn’t read the man at all, but forgot about it as his train of thought was broken by Risotto finally speaking up.
“Of course. Just like Valentine said, I have an idea how to find the Boss, but it will be risky to say the very least. The Boss has multiple assassins close by his side, four of the main ones being Cioccolatta, Secco, Squalo, and Tiziano. I personally don’t know what their Stands are, but what I do know is that they’re deadly and relentless.”
Risotto looked at everyone in the room, a bit of hesitation in his eyes.
“..I hope all of you know that once we betray the Boss, he will find out and send his deadliest assassins after us. We will be a threat to him, and he will not hold back. We may even have a chance of dying.”
Risotto moved to gesture towards a door,
“If any of you believe this is a bad idea and wish to continue working for the Boss, you can leave. But that means I will consider you a traitor. All of you, take this time to consider the risks.”
Nobody moved an inch, and surprisingly, Pesci was the first one to speak up.
“..Risotto, I-I think I speak for all of us when I say this. We’ll all follow you to the ends of the earth. W-We’re all one big family!”
Pesci could’ve sworn he saw Risotto smile a little, and Enrico finally spoke up.
“I admire your bravery and your team’s loyalty. Risotto, me and Valentine will be more than happy to help you and your team take down this Boss.”
Valentine looks at Enrico and smiles, nodded along with what he says. Risotto tried to hide his smile, clearing his throat and continuing on.
“If that’s the case, then here’s the game plan..”
Chapter 16: Clash and Talking Head (Part 1)
Risotto had rented out a boat that goes from Sardegna all the way to Neapolis, Risotto hearing that the Boss was someone near Roma. The plan was this:
Everyone is split into groups of three. The first group was Formaggio, Prosciutto, and Pesci. The second was Iluso, Ghiaccio, and Melone. The last group was Risotto, Enrico, and Valentine. All of them went different routes, and all agreed to meet up as a group in Roma, seeing as it was safer to go separately than together and risk being killed all at once. Each group was assigned a leader, the leader held a walkie-talkie to alert others of Stand attacks or if someone had been injured severely along with other things. The leaders of each group also got to choose where they went and what they did in an attempt to make things easier on everyone so they didn’t have to argue over sharing leadership. The leaders of each group were Iluso, Prosciutto, and Risotto. Sadly, it seemed the leader and walkie-talkie idea backfired a bit.
“ILLUSO IS BEING A JACKASS!”
“Prosciutto is being way too bossy!”
“Melone keeps trying to get into Ghiaccio’s pants!”
“Pesci’s crying in a corner.”
It got fairly… Repetitive. Especially since they were all complaining to Risotto, as if he were the dad of the group. Eventually, the idea of using walkie-talkies was scrapped since everyone abused that privilege. It had only been a day since they all set out for Roma, and Risotto decided him and his group should go to eat at a restaurant. Valentine was absolutely enthused with the idea, and Enrico went along because he was hungry and hadn’t eaten much in a while.
“Oh man! This stuff is amazing!”
Valentine blurted out, scarfing down a bowl of Minestrone. Despite Valentine showing himself to be dignified and neat back in his day, he threw whatever manners he used to have back in the 1800’s out the window. It was 2019, and the former president had no use for table manners anymore. Enrico had to hold back a laugh seeing the man act so much like an early teenager.
“I’ve never went anywhere outside of America and I had no idea what I was missing! Is all Italian food this good?”
Risotto almost looked proud for a moment, as if he had bragging rights because of the superior taste of Italian dishes. That look faded quickly though, as the man’s serious demeanor reappeared.
“I suppose you could say that. Either way, I hope you two know that we shouldn’t let our guard down and goof off. Those assassins could be anywhere.”
Enrico nodded in agreement, as he took a sip of his water.
“Of course. Anything can go wrong in this situation, so we need to make sure all of us focus. Right Valentine?”
Enrico looked at the curly haired blonde next to him, who had pasta sauce all over his face and was scarfing down a glass of wine. He paused for a moment and smiled awkwardly, nodding. Risotto stood up from his seat quickly, beginning to speak again.
“I think we should take our leave. If we stay in one place too long, we could be targeted quicker.”
Valentine nodded, taking the napkin on his right and wiping off his face, and Risotto subconsciously took a napkin on his right too and cleaned a small bit of food off of himself. Enrico was about to stand up when he saw something.. Strange. His glass of water. There was something in his water. Nobody else seemed to notice it but Enrico. He leaned down to inspect it closer, before watching it vanish. No, it didn’t vanish. It teleported into the almost empty glass of wine Valentine had been drinking. It quickly hit Enrico that this was a Stand. From what Enrico could see, the Stand looked like a small shark, and Enrico could’ve sworn the thing looked at him. He immediately jumped back from the glass.
“Valentine! Stay there!”
Enrico yelled, and Valentine looked at him, confused. Wait, what did Enrico just say? Did he slip up? Even Risotto looked at him odd.
“..Huh? What do you mean, Pucci?”
Enrico tried to point at the wine glass with the Stand in it. As if someone were controlling him, Enrico’s arm was forcibly moved to point somewhere else as he spoke again.
“There’s a Stand over there! We’re under a Stand attack, I saw it!”
Enrico was telling the truth, but the Stand wasn’t there, it was in the wine glass! Why couldn’t he tell them the Stand was in the wine glass? Despite Enrico’s lie, Valentine and Risotto believed him and immediately looked in the opposite direction of where the Stand was.
“What? We haven’t even been here for that long and they’ve already found us?”
Risotto looked like he was ready for a fight, while Valentine backed up from where Enrico was pointing,
“Maybe we should run.. In this case, retreating and trying to figure out what their Stands do would be safer instead of risking our lives and going in head first, right?”
Valentine looked at the others for reassurance, and Enrico was the first to speak up.
He was forced to lie,
“We should take the users head on and get it over and done with!”
No! No, they shouldn’t do that! What was happening to Enrico? He covered his mouth immediately, as Valentine seemed convinced.
“R-Right. Right! We should make sure we get rid of them quickly.”
Risotto nodded in agreement, as they both ran off in the false direction Enrico had pointed in. Enrico tried to yell out for them to tell them to stop, but something forced him to stay silent. He tried to run after them, but immediately decided against it. These Stand users were targeting him for a reason, and Enrico knew if he went after Risotto and Valentine all he would do is put them in danger. Enrico ran in the opposite direction, and he could’ve sworn he caught a glimpse of that shark Stand teleport out of a glass of wine.
“That priest is a smart one isn’t he, Squalo? Running away from his teammates in an attempt to keep them safe.”
The long, grey haired man Tiziano stated, laying his head on one of Squalo’s tensed shoulders. The orange haired man looked frustrated.
“Yeah, too smart for his own good. He’s just cornering himself.”
“He reminds me kind of like a lab rat, don’t you think?”
Squalo had to think for a moment, as he and Tiziano watched the priest from a rooftop.
“Where’d you get that idea from?”
The other giggled a little,
“He’s running around without a clear motive, lost and confused, the only thing on his mind being the safety of his friends. Similar to that of a lab rat, running along in a maze, no clear motive except the fact he knows there’s cheese at the end.”
Squalo continued to watch the priest run along, as they both stood up to follow him from afar so their Stands were in range.
“..Now that I think about it, you’ve got a point, Tiz.”
Enrico continued to run as he made it to somewhere open. He knew he was lost, but he could care less. As long as these Stand users continued to focus on just him for a little while and left the others alone, he’d be fine. He looked around slightly frantically, trying to see if he could spot anyone out of the ordinary. Stand users usually weren’t the best at blending in, and Enrico knew this well.
“ Whitesnake .”
He said under his breath, as the white Stand manifested without issue. He looked at it for a moment, before nodding, as if the two knew exactly what to do.
Squalo and Tiziano didn’t take long to catch up to what they thought was where the priest was. Neither of them could spot the user or even its Stand anywhere.
“Hey, where’d the priest go? We should’ve caught up to him by now.”
Squalo questioned, as Tiziano handed him a pair of binoculars.
“Perhaps he’s already gone ahead?”
“Nah, there’s no way. It’s practically a dead end here. Like I said earlier, he’s cornered himself.”
“Maybe we should go down there and take a better look.”
“..Yeah. Besides, even if he’s hiding and pops out he won’t last long against Clash .”
Not even a few minutes passed before Squalo spotted the priest in the crowd. He stuck out like a sore thumb.
“There he is. Squalo, you know how it was raining a little yesterday?”
Squalo looked at Tiziano, confused.
“Uh, yeah. Why do you bring it up?”
“There’s a bunch of puddles of water everywhere around here. You could use your Clash to sneak up on him and bite at his ankles.”
Squalo gave a malicious smile,
“I like that idea, Tiz.”
They both hid farther into the crowd as they watched from afar, the shark like Stand Clash appearing in a puddle next to the priests feet. It lunged at his ankles, ready to clamp down onto it, before it was kicked out of the water, sending it flying a few feet into the air. Squalo coughed, blood spurting out of his mouth as he tried to cover it, attempting not to be seen.
“I’ve found you.”
Tiziano and Squalo both looked equally terrified, the priests form and body melting. That wasn’t their target. That was a Stand disguised as their target. Squalo panicked, but Tiziano was quick to calm him down.
“Sshh.. Squalo, that must be the priests Stand. Talking Head is still active! Remember, he’s saying the opposite of what he actually means.”
He reassured, keeping his voice to a whisper. The white Stand fully formed, as Clash teleported to another body of water. Squalo was enraged, and made Clash lunge at the Stand again. The white Stand dodged this time, and its glare immediately focused on Squalo and Tiziano.
“I’ve found you.”
The Stand spoke again, immediately making its way towards the users. The both of them panicked, and started to run.
“I-I thought you said Talking Head was still active! How did he spot us? How?!”
“I don’t know! I don’t even know how he’s able to negate the effects either! W-We shouldn’t have underestimated the enemy!”
“ D4C !”
The pastel pink and blue Stand manifested quickly, and clotheslined the pair of assassins, knocking them to the ground. They both looked terrified.
“All Stands have sentience of their own, to an extent.”
The priest, Enrico, walked out from somewhere in the crowd. Valentine had been standing there with D4C and Risotto the entire time.
“I was able to negate your abilities effects because Whitesnake has a mind and mouth of its own, despite being directly related to my own soul. It also has a range of 20 meters, which allowed me to run off and get the others while the effects of your so called Talking Head wore off.”
Risotto approached the two terrified assassins, who were still on the ground.
“Nero, could you do the honors?”
Enrico looked to him, and Risotto uttered a single word.
“ Metallica .”
Next up I'll be serving you a nice, moldy cup of Green Tea™
Chapter 18: Disgust
Valentine, Enrico, and Risotto were running. Running for their lives, actually. They had to. Risotto didn’t entirely kill Tiziano and Squalo with Metallica , so there was a chance that authorities were alerted of two men bleeding out in the middle of a town, which meant the two assassins had already alerted the Boss of their whereabouts. The three of them had to travel fast, and make sure they were hard to track. So, what better way to be hard to track down than stealing a car and driving off with it? It wasn’t the most morally right thing to do, they can all admit that. But, this was a life or death situation. They needed to find the Boss and fast. So, Risotto took the front wheel and off they drove to Roma. During the drive, Valentine saw that there was a newspaper in a glove department as he sat in the passenger's seat. He decided to open and read its contents to keep himself busy, finding something interesting.
He mumbled to himself, and Enrico perked up.
“Is there something wrong, Valentine?”
He shook his head, as he leaned back to show Enrico the article.
“No, but read this. Apparently some lady jumped off a building. Ain’t that kinda nerve wrecking, especially since it happened only a little while before we got here?”
Enrico sighed and leaned back, and Risotto seemed interested.
“A lady jumped off a building?.. I think I heard about that on the news a little while ago.”
Valentine looked to Risotto, intrigued.
“If I remember correctly, the news said that she had a boyfriend, and he was suspected of pushing her off the building and killing her. One thing I feel stuck with me though is the fact that she jumped off of the building holding some sort of circular shaped sculpture.”
Valentine felt a slight shiver go up his spine,
“That’s kinda freaky. Why would she be holding some kinda stone sculpture though?”
“I couldn't tell you. When my squad heard that, they all suspected it was some sort of Stand. I highly doubt it is though, they’re always so quick to jump to conclusions like that.”
Valentine sat back in his seat properly and continued reading, focusing himself on another article stating something about how Italy’s drug trades had raised over the years.
The room was dark, as usual. The Boss always stayed in dark places, making sure nobody could see him, as it should be. A good identity is a hidden one, after all. The Boss had recently gotten notice of Squalo and Tiziano’s defeat. A shame. He was hoping he didn’t have to resort to… Them . But he had no other choice, and heard the door open behind him. The Boss was seated in a chair, facing back away from his desk. He didn’t even want to look at the creature behind him.
The Boss said, not needing to look and see it was him.
“Squalo and Tiziano failed their mission to take out the enemy. You understand why I called you here, I assume?”
The green haired psychopath crossed his arms, his bright green emotionless eyes shining through the darkness. The Boss could feel the sadist’s smile from his seat.
“Of course, Boss. You want me to be rid of them, yes?”
The Boss refused to turn around to face him,
Cioccolata was already beginning to leave, not needing any more information before he was stopped.
“By the way,”
He finally turned slightly to look at the putrid man before him,
“Try not to make too much of a mess.”
Cioccolata just smiled, and walked off, pulling out his phone, supposedly to call his ‘pet’. The Boss usually had a hard time feeling disgust for anything, but that man, that Cioccolata, he disgusted him to a level unimaginable.
Roma. The group had finally made it, and were planning to meet up with the others soon. Surprisingly enough, Valentine, Enrico, and Risotto were the first ones to make it there. It was a beautiful place, and they were near one of the most historical landmarks known to man, the Colosseum. When they got there, they parked a car in a fairly inconspicuous place to make sure nobody saw them get out of it. Valentine was absolutely stunned by how amazing this place was, seeing the town all lit up during the night. Risotto seemed to take notice of Valentine’s childish wonder of the place, and found it entertaining.
“You seem intrigued, Valentine.”
Risotto spoke up as they began to make their way through town. Valentine didn’t seem to be paying much attention to anything else around him except for the pretty sights among him.
“Yeah! I am.”
He replied quickly, traveling ahead of the rest of the group. Enrico seemed a little concerned by this,
“Hey, Valentine, wait for us! Remember to stick with the group!”
Valentine waved both Enrico and Risotto off, already making his way up stairs and traveling far ahead. Enrico was about to run after him before noticing Risotto was stopped dead in his tracks.
“Nero? What are you looking at?”
Enrico looked at Risotto, whose face was covered with nothing but pure fear. That was an emotion Enrico never knew the man could express.
“We need to get out of here, now .”
Risotto grabbed onto Enrico’s arm,
He yelled, as he started to run, Enrico right behind him. As Enrico looked back to see what Risotto was staring at, he saw two men, who’s lower bodies were rotting and slowly disintegrating. Was that.. Mold?
Cioccolata began, as him and the gimp next to him stood near a railing, looking above some of the town.
“Did you get Risotto Nero’s expression? Was it a good shot?”
The man in the oddly tight body suit, Secco, looked at him excitedly, showing him the footage of Risotto’s face slowly changing into one of pure fear, as he witnessed two people get slowly eaten away by Cioccolata’s mold. Cioccolata looked satisfied and happy.
He yelled out, wrapping Secco in a hug of sorts and petting him like a dog.
“Good, good, good, good, good, good, good~! His expression will be a perfect addition to my collection!”
Cioccolata leaned back, reaching into his pocket. Secco’s eyes widened as he got into a stance,
“As a reward, I’ll give you a sugar cube! No, two sugar cubes~!”
Secco nodded quickly as he grunted out like an animal, holding his hands out for the sugar cubes. Cioccolata pulled two out of his pocket and reeled back,
He threw the cubes and, without breaking a sweat, Secco caught both of them in his mouth. Cioccolata’s smile widened as he hugged and pet Secco again.
“Goo~od~!! Good, good, good, good…”
Writing as Cioccolata is p a i n f u l
Chapter 20: Green Day and Oasis (Part 2)
Valentine was already too far ahead of Enrico and Risotto to realize there was a Stand attack underway, being more enthralled with the pretty sights around him. Why hadn’t he ever bothered to travel during his days as a President? The world around him was so beautiful! He had no idea there were so many sights to see! He hummed to himself as he skipped through the streets, taking his time as he headed to the Colosseum. It looked like such a pretty tourist spot, so of course he was going to go there first. He’ll even wait for Enrico and Risotto when he got there!.. But soon, he realized that there was a problem. The more he looked around, the more he realized that chaos was surrounding him. Mold. There was mold everywhere, growing at unnaturally high speeds. The worst part? It began affecting the people too. Valentine felt like throwing up, witnessing half dead corpses crawling around with barely any parts left, their bones and inside being eaten by the rapidly increasing mold. Immediately he could see this was a Stand attack. But, what kind of sick freak would have a Stand like this? Did this user not give a single care about the innocent civilians at all? Was this just a free for all with this enemy? Valentine was snapped out of his train of thought when he felt something grab at his ankle, looking down to see a man in a full body, almost snake like textured suit. The man let out a laugh. A slurred and unnerving laugh, but a laugh.
“Gyeheh..! I’ve got you! Who’s Funny now, Valentine?”
Valentine was beginning to get slowly pulled down into the concrete, which had now changed into a mud like substance. Were there two Stand users? Was this one of the assassins sent after Valentine and the others by the Boss? Valentine didn’t even bother to try and answer those questions now, as he summoned D4C to try and kick the man away, using him to propel himself away from the ground. The man let out a slight grunt of pain as he was kicked backwards slightly, Valentine making sure to get out of however long his range might’ve been.
“A-Aah!! You kicked me in the face! You kicked me!! How dare you, how dare you?!”
The man yelped out, shaking his head to regain his composure.
“I’ll kill you! I’ll bury you ten feet under and kill you!”
The man yelled and immediately dove into the ground, as if it had the consistency of water. What kind of Stand ability was this? Valentine wasn’t about to stay and see, as he immediately turned to run. He was running as fast as his shitty old legs could carry him. The Colosseum. He needed to get to the Colosseum and meet up with the others there. But before he could do that, he needed to get rid of the man chasing him. This was such an inconvenience..
Risotto and Enrico were still running as fast as they could, Risotto taking sharp turns as random points, but never going down any stairs or even moving downwards at all. They both were able to hide behind a small alley, panting heavily.
“N-Nero, is this one of the assassins ability? What in Heaven's name is with this mold?”
Risotto looked hesitant. He was afraid. He genuinely, with all of his heart, was terrified.
“..This is Cioccolatas’s Stand, Green Day . It’s never ending mold that grows within its range.”
“What’s its range then?”
“The range varies. His mold can spread as far as entire continents if he wanted it to.”
Risotto gritted his teeth,
“This bastard won’t let up his Stand attack until we’re dead. The only way to get rid of this mold is to kill him.”
“However~, that won’t be happening.”
Both Enrico and Risotto froze, as they turned to see Cioccolata, standing on the railing of a houses ledge as if he had no risk of falling off.
“Risotto Nero, so good to see you again. It seems you and your squad haven’t learned your lesson after what happened to Sorbet and Gelato?”
Cioccolata turned his attention to Enrico, giving a smile that would send chills down even the strongest of men’s spines.
“And you . You’re a special specimen, aren’t you? I’ve heard quite a bit about your Stand. What was it called again? Whitesnake ?”
Both Enrico and Risotto stepped back. However, Risotto gave Cioccolata a vengeful and hate filled glare. Cioccolata couldn’t help but laugh.
“My, my~! Such scary faces you’re making at me! Still mad over your friend’s deaths I suppose? That’s cute.”
Cioccolata wielded a few scalpels in his hand, as if he had come prepared with surgical supplies. A tiny bit of his Stand, Green Day , could be seen standing behind him.
“Too bad I won’t be able to see them once I send the both of you to Hell!”
Cioccolata reeled back and whipped the scalpels in their direction as if they were everyday throwing knives, and Enrico summoned Whitesnake to block them.
“Enrico! Don’t! Cioccolata covered the scalpels in mold before he threw them, you’ll get infected even if they barely touch you!”
Risotto yelled, pulling Enrico out of the way and quickly running off with him as the scalpels missed and hit the ground. Cioccolata watched the two of them sprint off, and the man couldn’t help but smile.
“It appears you’ve become more resilient, Risotto Nero.”
He said to no one in particular.
“But your resilience can only get you so far. Sooner or later, you and your ‘friends’ will end up just like Sorbet and Gelato. Gagged, cut into pieces, and filmed to become part of my collection.”
Chapter 21: Green Day and Oasis (Part 3)
Valentine continued to run, glancing back only occasionally to see the ground behind him liquify and that suited man swimming towards him without signs of stopping. Valentine was doing everything in his power to pick up the pace, but with him being 48 years old that made it difficult. He was an old geezer, alright? Eventually, the man caught up to him and dragged him under the ground. It was the weirdest feeling being underground and everything around you is entirely liquified. He could see the man in the body suit swim in front of him, ready to pounce on Valentine.
“Haha! I’ve got you now, Funny!”
The man laughed some more as he tauntingly swam around Valentine.
“Gyehahah! You weren’t so tough! Boss hyped you up for no good reason! You’re just some over glorified guy with dumb luck!”
The man immediately swam towards Valentine, and without hesitation punched a hole through his chest.
“I did it! I won! Ahaha!! You’re dead, dead, dead!”
The man’s victory was quickly silenced, as he heard footsteps coming from above. He stuck his head up from the ground before seeing Valentine, running off again. What? But he just killed Valentine, his corpse was floating right there below him! The man let out a confused and annoyed grunt,
“You tricked me!! I’ll kill you even more than I did before!”
He yelled, diving back into the ground and following the sound of Valentine’s footsteps. Up above ground, Valentine continued to run. That was close. Way too close. If he hadn’t used D4C at the last second to transfer it to another Valentine, he would’ve died for good right then and there. He glanced behind to see the liquefying ground, seeing how close the enemy was getting to him. That’s when he realized the enemy bases his movements off of the sound caused above ground, like a bat using echolocation. This made things a lot simpler for Valentine, as he reached into his coat and pulled out an entire American flag. Having a Stand that can pull things from other dimensions from basically out of nowhere is always helpful. He took a sharp turn to his left, and pulled the flag over himself. The enemy immediately sent a flurry of punches up from under the ground, thinking he was hitting Valentine when he was simply throwing punches at a flag.
“Huh? W-What the..??”
The man looked around quickly, throwing the flag to the ground and looking everywhere for where Valentine went. He even looked underneath the flag again.. Seeing another face stare at him from underneath, facing the barrel of a gun. Valentine fired the gun, watching the man quickly dodge to the other side, however, he was covering his ear. It had gotten blown off completely. The man yelled in agony,
His eyes were wild as he stared at Valentine, who was just getting out from underneath the flag. Valentine didn’t seem too bothered.
“YOU SHOT MY EAR OFF!! YOU SHOT ME!! I-I’LL MAKE YOU PAAY!!”
The man immediately dove underground and came at him at rapid speeds, leaping at Valentine who just stared at him.
“I think you forgot something.”
Valentine said, as the man quickly gave a confused stare, before he was met with the end of a gun again.
Risotto and Enrico could hear the gunshots from a mile away. They weren’t a good sign. Cioccolata was in hot pursuit of them, Green Day actively spreading mold like it was nothing, eating at everything in its path. The two of them continued to move upwards, eventually the both of them hopping from rooftop to rooftop. They could see the Colosseum slowly getting nearer, before a chunk of mold began to grow in front of them, forcing them to stop in their tracks.
“You two put up a good chase,”
Cioccolata spoke, before Green Day appeared beside him,
“But sadly, the chase ends here.”
Enrico immediately got ready to take his Stand out, before Risotto stopped him. Enrico gave him a confused look.
“Enrico. I want you to get to the Colosseum without me.”
“What? But, I can’t-“
“I said, get to the Colosseum without me .”
His voice was more stern, as he glared at Enrico. Cioccolata looked at his wrist and at a non-existent watch, waiting for them to finish talking.
“Nero, what are you trying to tell me?”
“I’m telling you to go on without me. This is a battle between Cioccolata and me only.”
Risotto was silent, as he stepped forward.
“This is a battle to avenge the people he killed.”
Cioccolata found Risotto’s bravery laughable.
“Aww, how cute~. Feeling all brave now? Go on then, Nero , hit me with your best shot. I’d love to see how long you last.”
Enrico looked at Risotto for a moment, before nodding at him and immediately running off to find Valentine. Now it was only Risotto and Cioccolata, having their own standoff.
“What’s the matter? Too scared to approach me?”
Risotto glared at him,
“I don’t need to.”
Metal particles from around him formed into scissors and scalpels, and they all lunged towards Cioccolata, who used Green Day’s mold to eat at then until there was nothing left of the metal objects or were too dull to do anything.
“Ranged attacks won’t work on me. My mold will simply eat your metal away.”
Risotto didn’t bother to respond, as he used Metallica to turn himself invisible. Cioccolata looked visibly surprised, readying scalpels behind his back to lunge at Risotto. He waited for a moment, listening for any sounds around him, before he felt a sharp pain in his left shoulder blade. He felt metal rip through the skin and bone, watching an actual fully metal butcher knife cut through his shoulder and rip his arm off. He had no concept or idea of what Risotto’s ability was.
“ Metallica .”
Risotto spoke, as Cioccolata immediately whipped the scalpels in the direction of the voice, missing by a few inches.
“That’s the name of my Stand. I used the iron in your body to make a knife in your shoulder blade.”
Risotto barely showed himself through his invisible state, pointing at his head.
“Next, I’ll use whatever iron’s left in you to create a dent in your skull. After that, I’ll use my hands to do the rest.”
Cioccolata immediately backed off, visible panic showing in his eyes. That was before he realized something, and gained an idea.
“H-Heh.. If you wanna do that,”
Cioccolata immediately began to run like a coward, picking up his severed arm.
“Then you’ll have to catch me!!”
Risotto showed visible anger in his eyes, and ran after the man.
“You fucking coward! Face me like a man!”
He yelled out in a rage, as Cioccolata ran and jumped off of the rooftop, Risotto following in pursuit. He wasn’t about to have the man that killed his friends get away like this. He was going to make him pay for what he did, with every fiber of his being. Risotto jumped off the rooftop after Cioccolata, who looked up at him from below, cackling. Risotto was confused before he realized it was too late, and mold began to rapidly grow on his body.
“You complete idiot! Did you forget how my Green Day works? Your blind rage for your ‘friends’ made you forget that going down causes my mold to grow faster!”
Risotto fell to the ground with a loud thud, the mold already beginning to spread. Cioccolata, still holding his severed arm, walked over to Risotto’s body and stepped on his chest, making it harder for him to breathe than it already was.
“Say hi to Sorbet and Gelato for me in Hell.”
Enrico was barely able to catch up to Valentine, who didn’t seem to be affected by the mold yet. However, when Enrico saw the man, his expression looked cold, and there were small spurts of blood on his pink coat, as if he had just killed a man. He was also holding things in both hands, one was an American flag, and in the other was a pistol.
“Valentine! What happened to you? Did you encounter the other assassin?”
Valentine looked like he was in a dazed state before snapping out of it hearing Enrico speak, going back to his usual bubbly demeanor.
“O-Oh! I think so! He’s not.. Alive though.”
He let out a slightly embarrassed chuckle, holding his American flag close. Enrico sort of just stared at him for a moment, before sighing.
“..And I was hoping we didn’t have to resort to killing others. I suppose it can’t be helped.”
Enrico looked forward, seeing the Colosseum in the distance. They weren’t too far from it now. Valentine on the other hand was more focused on their missing companion.
“Hey, Pucci.. Where’s Risotto?”
He looked around curiously, as Enrico turned around to look at Valentine, running around searching for him.
“He told me to leave him with the other assassin so he could fight him himself. I believe he was doing this for revenge of sorts.”
Valentine looked at him, a slightly worried expression on his face.
“I guess I could understand that. But, I just hope that he’s alright.”
Enrico nodded, as they both began to make their way towards the Colosseum, stopping dead in their tracks after laying their eyes on a slightly gruesome sight. It was Cioccolata with one of his arms looking neatly stitched back on, holding Risotto’s unmoving body, slightly bloodied in places and covered in mold. He threw Risotto’s body in front of him, before stepping on his head.
“His rage blinded him. I was able to safely trick him into descending into my mold.”
Enrico clenched his hands into fists, and Valentine simply stood there, his eyes focused on Risotto.
“He gave me a bit of a scare, I’ll give him that much. Other than the iron that I've lost and the little damage he caused me, he was nothing more than an angry fool, too focused on his dead buddies to pay attention to strategy.”
Cioccolata immediately gave Risotto a kick in his ribs, making the man spaz slightly and cough up blood, the mold spreading quicker. Enrico immediately stepped forward, as he saw Cioccolata reel back to kick him again.
He yelled, as Cioccolata paused, giving Valentine and Enrico a devilish smile.
“Stop? You want me to stop?”
“You’re hilarious if you think I’d stop for a bunch of low-lives like yourselves. Don’t worry, I’ll be sure to get rid of you two quickly so you can say hello to Risotto in the afterlife.”
Cioccolata brought his hand up to his mouth and stuck two fingers in it, letting out a loud whistle as if he were calling a dog.
He called out, waiting for him to come. It was silent, and Cioccolata looked annoyed. He whistled again,
He yelled out, now more sternly. Valentine watched him call for this Secco, before realizing something. He couldn’t help but laugh, as Cioccolata turned to look at him.
“What? What’s so funny?!”
He yelled again, a worried look on his face. Valentine just laughed.
“Oh, oh i-it’s nothing.. Just, I find it so funny how you’re calling for a dead man.”
Valentine was able to stop his laughter, as he threw his pistol to the side. He began to approach Cioccolata, who was wide eyed.
“That’s right. I killed him. I killed your Secco.”
Cioccolata backed up slightly, before reaching down and grabbing Risotto’s body, picking it up and holding a scalpel to his neck.
“D-Don’t come any closer!! I’ll slit his throat!”
Valentine stopped in his tracks, crossing his arms.
“Oh, I won’t have to come any closer.”
A voice came from behind Cioccolata,
“Because I’m already here.”
Before he could even fully turn around, Valentine used D4C to punch him in the side of his head, making him stumble back, as D4C’s fist continued to dig into his skull. Risotto’s body fell to the ground in the process.
“I usually try my hardest to give the people I fight a second chance. Sometimes, they end up becoming good people from my experiences so far.”
Small spurts of blood began to crawl down Cioccolata’s head, as D4C’s fist dug deeper.
“But pieces of shit like yourself don’t deserve a second chance.”
Cioccolata, in his rage and confusion, attempted to lunge at Valentine.
“Y-You’re so mean!”
Valentine gave him a glare, as he reeled back his fist along with D4C before sending a flurry of punches at Cioccolata, sending him skidding across the concrete. Enrico stood back, almost as if he was scared of Valentine more than the man who almost killed Risotto. Valentine looked as if he was blind with pure anger and hatred. A look of vengeance and the look of a man who remembered how it felt to kill. It was as if Valentine had become someone completely different, or remembered something about himself. As his Stand disappeared back into him, he seemed to have snapped out of whatever trance he was put into, eyeing Cioccolata’s unmoving body for a moment before turning back and seeing Risotto, still laying there. The mold seemed to have been disappearing quickly however, meaning Cioccolata was gone for good. He ran over to Risotto’s body and kneeled next to his body, gently lifting him up and shaking him.
He shook him again, as Risotto let out a cough, signifying that he was still alive. Enrico had to walk over and stop Valentine from shaking him too much. Risotto looked out of it as he barely opened his red eyes. He coughed again.
“..I-I.. I couldn’t beat him..”
He mumbled out, looking pale.
Enrico quickly shushed him,
“Save your breath, Cioccolata’s mold really did a number on you. Valentine, bring Nero somewhere safe.”
Valentine looked at Enrico and watched him stand up, and began to walk off.
“Wait, where are you going Pucci?”
Enrico stopped for a moment, before looking off into the distance, and right at the Coliseum.
“That Boss is here, I can feel it. I’m going after him myself to end this mess once and for all.”
Valentine looked at him, with wide eyes.
“You can’t be serious! You saw what Cioccolata and his Stand did to Risotto and this entire town! Who knows what the Boss’s Stand could be capable of!”
Enrico looked back at him with a stern expression,
“I said take Nero back somewhere safe. I’m not risking any of you getting hurt any more.”
Valentine looked down at Risotto, and then back at Enrico. He reluctantly complied, picking up Risotto’s body and turning around to walk off. Enrico didn’t say anything, as he too turned back around and began making his way to the Coliseum.
I beli- we're nearing the end.
Chapter 23: 21st Century Schizoid Man (Part 1)
The Better Than Bad ask blog has been discontinued. I mainly did it for fun, but it soon turned into a hassle for me and eventually I couldn't find the motivation to continue running it. I do, however, have a Twitter (@Mehoygerfunkl) so if you'd like to see my art or send me things, go there. My dms are always open.
Link to the blog in case anyone would still like to see what was there.
Enrico could feel the Boss’s presence, even from outside the Coliseum. Whatever Stand this man had, it was powerful. Enrico knew he may not stand a chance against him, but he had to. He had to for the sake of Valentine, Risotto, and the others. He was able to sneak his way into the Coliseum by sheer luck, considering how this was a tourist attraction. That man was nearby, and he could feel his fear begin to pool up inside of him. As he quietly made his way through the Coliseum, he could hear another pair of footsteps. There was someone here. It was Him. It had to be Him. He readied his Stand, as he took a few steps back.. At least, he thought he did. He didn’t even hear his own footsteps, yet he was already a foot or two away from his original position. This ability reminded him of someone.
A voice. Enrico looked around everywhere to see where it was coming from.
“You may think you’ve bested me, finding out where I’ve been hiding myself for so long. But you’re wrong. This is where your story ends.”
More steps could be heard, as Enrico turned to see someone hiding in the shadows, at the bottom of some stairs. Why did this encounter feel all too familiar?
“No one can escape the fate that was chosen for them. All that remains is the end,”
The shadowy figure suddenly disappeared, and Enrico stepped back.
“Where you will all perish.”
Enrico whipped around to see a man, still hidden in the shadows, with what appeared to be his Stand, green eyes all focused right on him. The man’s demeanor threatened Enrico, but he had to stand tall and keep focus. This man’s Stand was definitely not something to underestimate.
“A person grows once they are able to defeat their weaker self.”
The man man vanished again, as he appeared right behind Enrico.
“Wouldn’t you agree, Enrico Pucci?”
The man’s Stand took no time to slash at Enrico, who dodged just quick enough to only have his priest garb cut at the chest.
“You’re fast, I’ll give you that much. But eternal greatness only exists within itself.”
Enrico readied Whitesnake as he lunged towards the shadowed figure, slashing at him. Enrico was positive he gave the man a few good punches and slashes, before the shadows off of the others face vanished, and Enrico saw himself staring back at him.
“ What you just hit wasn’t me, but it was your future self.”
Enrico turned to see the man’s Stand readying another attack.
“Sing a song of sorrow in a world where time has vanished.”
Enrico barely had time to think as he moved to use Whitesnake to try and block the attack. The Stand chopped its hand down onto Whitesnake ’s arms, leaving a gash in them. Enrico used some of his strength to push the enemy back as he stumbled, trying to regain his bearings as his arms bled from the powerful attack.
“Speed is the only thing you have going for you. But how long will your perseverance keep you alive?”
Enrico gave the man a glare, despite not being able to fully see his face. He needed to find out what this man’s ability was, and fast. However, his enemy was right. How long will Enrico’s perseverance keep him alive?
“Jesus! What the Hell happened to this place?”
Prosciutto yelled out in shock, as Formaggio inspected one of the many corpses the group came by. Pesci was covering his eyes, not wanting to see any of the bodies.
“H-How bad is it? Wait! Don’t tell me! I don’t wanna imagine it either!”
“Calm down ya crybaby! It’s just half a body… I mean, what’s left of it? I think? It’s barely recognizable.”
Formaggio used his Stand to gently lift the corpses severed hand. The thing looked rotted.
“Formaggio, don’t touch that.”
Formaggio looked at Prosciutto and stuck his tongue out before dropping the hand, his Stand disappearing back into him.
“So, where are the others? We obviously ain’t the first one’s here.”
Prosciutto used his foot to lightly kick over a corpse to inspect its face,
“Well, whoever was here definitely made a mess of things.”
Pesci barely uncovered one of his eyes as he tried to look at his older brother,
“Do you think I-It was a Stand attack?”
Formaggio stood up and spoke for Prosciutto,
“Of course it was! But, I mean, seems the user might be dead or gave up on his attack.”
Prosciutto peeled his eyes away from the corpse, looking out in the distance.
“..We should still keep our guard up. You never know when a Stand user is gonna come out of hidi-“
Prosciutto was cut off by a loud yell,
“JESUS CHRIST WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED?!”
Formaggio turned to look at Prosciutto,
The group immediately went after the sound of the yelling, Prosciutto having to drag Pesci there because he wouldn’t open his eyes. It didn’t take them long to get there, spotting the blue haired man freaking out over a bunch of dead bodies while Illuso desperately tried to call Risotto, and Melone on the side holding onto his computer with a small Babyface Junior on his shoulder. Melone was the first to notice the others.
“Oh, hii~! You guys see all the dead bodies? Kinda freaky, huh?”
Melone didn’t seem all too phased, as Illuso looked completely freaked out.
“P-Prosciutto! I can’t get ahold of Risotto! This is bad.. This is REALLY bad.”
Prosciutto reeled back and smacked Illuso in the face. He immediately seemed to calm down.
“As Risotto’s second in command, I’m pretty sure he’s fine.”
Illuso nodded a little,
”Yeah, but, it’s kinda worrying. After losing Sorbet and Gelato-”
Illuso was cut off by Pesci, covering his ears and making a bunch of random noises.
“La la la!! I can’t hear you! I don’t hear anything!!”
“..R-Right. I forgot about Pesci.”
Prosciutto sighed as he moved to try and comfort Pesci, who was trying so desperately to ignore any mention of Sorbet and Gelato. Ghiaccio was the first one to notice a pink clad figure running towards them. He rolled his eyes,
“LOOKS LIKE WE’VE GOT SOME MORE COMPANY.”
He said (well, more like yelled), as Valentine ran towards them holding Risotto’s unconscious body. Everyone immediately took on a more serious tone as they saw it. Valentine slumped a little, out of breath.
“Valentine? What happened to Risotto?”
Prosciutto ran towards him, as Valentine gently placed Risotto’s body on the ground.
“..We ran into the other assassins.”
There was silence between all of them as Valentine continued.
“Risotto faced off against one of them alone. Cioccolata I think. His mold almost killed Risotto.”
Valentine spoke in slightly short breaths.
“..I don’t know if he’s even still alive. H-He’s gotta be.”
Prosciutto looked at Risotto laying there, unmoving. He leaned down to put his ear against his chest to listen for a heartbeat. He was quiet for a moment.
“His heart beat is slow, but he’s still alive.”
Everyone collectively let out sighs of relief, Ghiaccio however still didn’t seem too thrilled. He practically let out a growl as he clenched his fist.
“THAT FUCKING BASTARD.. THAT BOSS ALMOST KILLED OUR FRIEND! I’M GONNA KICK HIS SCRAWNY ASS!”
Melone held the enraged Ghiaccio back, as he tried to struggle out of his grasp to go and find the Boss. Pesci finally opened his eyes and uncovered his ears as he saw Risotto’s body. Something sparked in him.
“We can all go fight the Boss together.”
He said, his voice less shaky and more confident.
“We’ll all ambush him! He’s one person, and we’re a group of seven!”
Valentine stood up, and nodded.
“Pucci already went after the Boss. I don’t know what’s happening to him right now, but if we’re all going to go as a group we need to get the Coliseum fast.. Or he might not survive.”
Everyone looked at eachother, and collectively nodded.
“Then that settles it. We’re all going to the Coliseum, and we’re going to overthrow the Boss of Passione . For Risotto’s sake.”
Prosciutto said, as he took a step forward.
Chapter 24: 21st Century Schizoid Man (Part 2)
Enrico could barely keep it up anymore. He was slowly losing his composure as the man practically toyed with him. Enrico’s Stand wasn’t the most offensive, but held a good defense. However, his defense was crumbling. He had slashes all over his body from barely being able to dodge the enemies Stand’s attacks. He was already bleeding out from his mouth, panting like a dog, on his knees.
“Why must you fight your fate, Enrico Pucci? The end of your story was already set in stone when you tried resisting your death back in America.”
He approached him, using his foot to perch it underneath Enrico’s chin to make him look at him. As Enrico was forced to look at the man, he was able to catch a small glimpse of his appearance. Green, cold eyes with what looked to be pink tinted hair. It looked longer than what his silhouette showed off. Even then, his face was still concealed. The pink haired man’s Stand raised its arm up, ready to attack again.
“This will be the final blow. This is where you will meet your end.”
The Stand began to slash down, before a gun could be heard firing into the distance and a bullet hit the man in one of his arms, knocking him back.
Enrico looked back to see someone he didn’t think he’d see. It was Valentine. The pink haired man was in a state of slight shock, before a fishing rod could be seen lodging into his upper arm. Enrico saw the hook travel inside his body, as he spotted Pesci controlling it from the shadows. The man tried to pull the hook out of his arm, before watching Melone’s Babyface Junior lung at the man and punch him in the face, sending him back. As the man stumbled back, ice began to form around his feet, locking him in place, Ghiaccio looking pleased with himself far behind the man as it formed around the enemy's ankles. Sooner or later, the rest of La Squadra had already shown themselves, ready to give this Boss a good beat down.
“I’ve waited too long for this moment, Boss.”
A voice was heard in the distance, as a sloppily bandaged up Risotto could be seen walking out from behind a pillar. As Risotto began to approach the shadowy Boss, Illuso helped Enrico stand up so they could all face the man.
”Now we’ll be able to finally see your face before I make sure we won’t have to see it again.”
The Boss looked terrified, even in the shadows his amber eyes were filled with fear.. Wait, amber eyes? As Enrico looked closer at the shadowy figure, he realized that his body shape was more slim and petite, and his eyes weren’t green anymore. Before Enrico could say anything, Risotto grabbed the back of the man’s head and forced his face into the light, showing off the face of a small, pink haired boy. Everyone looked equally shocked.
”..What in the..?”
Risotto mumbled to himself, backing up. The kid looked like he was about to cry, as he stared at everyone, full of fear.
“S-Stay the Hell away from me!”
He yelled out, his voice a bit more high pitched than Enrico remembered. Formaggio couldn’t help but let out a laugh,
“This can’t be real! The Boss was a kid? No fuckin’ way!”
He laughed a bit more, as Pesci reeled his Beach Boy back and out of the boy’s arm, and Ghiaccio’s ice slowly melted off of his ankles. The boy stumbled a small bit when the ice fully disappeared, almost falling back. Enrico was still in disbelief. Was this really the Boss? Valentine didn’t seem too phased at all. In fact, he looked a little happy. In the meantime, Risotto looked at the boy for a moment, before turning to look at Enrico and Valentine.
”He’s your problem now.”
Valentine and Enrico let out a collective,
Before staring at each other in disbelief. Risotto gestured at the pink haired boy,
”I’m taking his role as Boss. If this kid really was the leader of Passione the entire time, then I don’t want him anywhere near this country ever again. Take him to America or something, I could care less what you do with him.”
Enrico’s eyes just widened as his mouth went agape. Valentine on the other hand looked absolutely enthused with this information.
“So, we get to bring him home with us?”
Valentine asked Risotto, as if he were getting a new puppy. Risotto just shrugged.
“Sure. Do what you want with him. As long as me and my squad don’t see him again, I’ll be fine.”
Valentine smiled as he ran over to the petite boy, who visibly recoiled when he held his hand out to him.
”Hi! I’m Funny Valentine, pleasure to meet you!”
The boy opened one of his eyes, staring at Valentine’s hand for a moment before looking up at him. The boy gulped, and was quiet for a good while as if he was having a conversation in his head, before nervously reaching out to shake Valentine’s hand.
”..D-Doppio. Vinegar Doppio.”
Chapter 25: Rolling Stones
Today would be Enrico, Valentine, and their new friend Doppio’s last day in Italy before their flight back to America. Risotto rented out an entire restaurant in celebration of becoming the new Boss of Passione , even inviting Tiziano and Squalo (who still looked visibly afraid of Enrico however). Everyone made sure to keep a good eye on Doppio, who seemed fairly timid at first but eventually opened up more to Valentine who treated him like a younger brother. They all had a nice time watching Formaggio and Illuso drink their asses off, Risotto breaking up a fight between Melone and Squalo, and a terrible karaoke session with Ghiaccio screaming the lyrics of Spice Girl songs. Eventually they all had to say their goodbyes, as Valentine, Enrico, and Doppio all got into a car Risotto had rented for them and driving off, making their way to the nearby airport. Valentine laid back in the front passenger seat, letting out a sigh of relief.
“That was an eventful few days, wasn’t it?”
He said, closing his eyes. Enrico nodded as he drove through the streets of Roma, while Doppio seemed to be in his own world, looking out the window.
“It really was. At least once we get back to America, we’ll have all the time in the world to relax again.”
As Enrico and Valentine continued to chat, Doppio tuned them out, watching the scenery go by. He could barely believe it. One moment he was living the life with Boss, feeling as if nothing could go wrong. And now here he was, about to leave Italy, the country he grew up in and lived in and ruled . As Doppio looked out the window more, he saw an interesting stone like sculpture laying on the sidewalk. He was a little confused at first, but didn’t pay any mind to it. Perhaps someone made it and didn’t like it, so they left it there. Doppio continued to tune everything out when he saw the sculpture again. Were there multiple of these? He tried to shrug it off. Maybe his mind was playing tricks on him. That’s what he wanted to believe, as he saw the sculpture a third time. This wasn’t just some regular sculpture. It was alive, or at least was something like that. Either way, this weird stone was following them. Doppio attempted to ignore it, as he sat back in his seat. His breathing was growing heavy as he panicked. He just needed to calm down. They were gonna get to the airport soon, he just needed to calm down. Doppio’s train of thought was broken, as the car sputtered a few times before coming to a sudden stop. Enrico tried to start it up again, but its engine would only blare for a few seconds before halting.
“Hey, what happened to the car?”
Enrico opened the car door and went to look at the engine. He let out an annoyed groan as he closed the hood of the car.
“Engines dead, everybody out. I’ll call a taxi and we’ll wait.”
Valentine huffed a little as he got out, and Doppio didn’t want to move. No. No no no no, they couldn’t stop. Not here, not now! That stone would be coming here any second now! That stone just meant bad news! Doppio hesitantly got out the car, shaking a little. Valentine could see his distress.
“Doppio, you look a little worried. Is everything alright?”
Doppio immediately turned to look at Valentine, hiding his worry behind his timid smile.
“I-I’m fine! Just.. Just trying to adjust to this big change, you know?”
Valentine smiled back and nodded,
“Of course. You must not be used to.. Well, not owning an entire mafia anymore.”
He laughed a little, as Doppio tried to laugh too, forcing it. As he slowly turned to look elsewhere, he spotted that damn stone again. What was it? Was it a Stand? It had to have been. He looked back to see if Valentine and Enrico noticed it, but Enrico was calling a taxi on his phone and Valentine seemed to have been more interested in his current surroundings. When Doppio looked back at the stone, it was closer. His breathing got heavier, and the panic was finally settling in. The stone slowly began to lose its smooth circular shape, and began to form itself into something else. Gradually, the stone took shape of a person. A specific person. Doppio approached it, and quickly realized that the stone had taken the shape of Valentine, slumped over. Doppio watched the stone slowly sink into the ground, and he immediately ran after it, trying to grab it. It was too late as it sunk into the ground fully, and began to form next to Valentine’s leg. Doppio didn’t know what this Stand was capable of, but either way he knew that he couldn’t let it touch Valentine.
“Valentine! Watch out! Don’t let that stone touch you!”
He yelled, as he was able to use whatever strength he had to summon his Stand, King Crimson’s arms, immediately tackling the stone and trying to hold onto it, feeling it visibly struggle. This was most definitely a Stand. Valentine and Enrico both turned to look at Doppio, his arms looking less humanoid due to them being King Crimson’s .
“Doppio, what in the world are you doing?!”
Enrico yelled slightly, as both him and Valentine watched Doppio struggle and fight with the rock. Doppio continued to fight with it, seeing a message appear on his arm that said, ‘please kill me’. Valentine attempted to approach Doppio, but immediately stopped in his tracks when Doppio gave him a glare.
“Don’t come any closer! Th-This is a Stand! And it’s after you Valentine!!”
Doppio continued to struggle, before he spotted a car starting to drive their way. Doppio held tightly onto the stone, as his eyes changed into a bright green, running into the road and using all of his strength to throw the stone right at the car window, forcing the car to swerve out of the way, fortunately not hitting Doppio. The stone smashed into multiple tiny pieces, and was scattered across the road. Valentine and Enrico just stood there, dumbfounded. Enrico was the first to speak up. Or, more like yell.
“THAT WAS OUR RIDE TO THE AIRPORT!!”
After a few sincere apologies to the cab driver and Enrico having to pay him handsomely, they eventually got into the car and were on their way to the airport. Doppio turned to look through the back window of the cab to see if the stone was still following them. It wasn’t, but this time it took a new form with its smashed pieces. The broken pieces of stone all formed six different faces, and Doppio could’ve sworn one of the faces was his own as the car got further and further from the rubble.
Chapter 26: Scary Monsters (Part 1)
After a long and boring airplane ride back home to America the trio took this time to relax and try to blend in with society a bit better. Despite them being somewhat functioning members of society, they all definitely.. Stood out. So, Enrico had taken both Valentine and Doppio to get some new clothes. Valentine was reluctant to change his outfit, but was conned into buying a nice, pastel pink dress shirt with beige dress pants. Doppio ended up getting himself a pure black suit, the undershirt being a nice hot pink and the tie being pure black as well. The suit was a little big on him, but Doppio reassured Enrico that it would be put to good use. Enrico didn’t get anything too flashy, picking out a neat, purple looking flannel with black jeans, wearing his priest collar to go with it. Enrico was pretty sure they blended in nicely as the days passed, life being normal for the three of them. Doppio struggled a bit getting used to living in America, but he was at least lucky to know a good bit of English along with Italian. So, yeah. They were all back to fairly normal lives after the journey they had in Italy. That’s the end of the story.
That’s where they wished the story ended at least. This was merely the beginning to something bigger.
“ More sightings of this local creature have been spotted, along with five more deaths supposedly being caused by the monster. ”
Doppio intently listened to the news report on the T.V. One week. It has been one week since the sightings of this ‘monster’ had first been reported, and it terrified Doppio.
“ Police are unable to locate the whereabouts of this creature. However, we have gotten more photographic evidence that it's out there and on the loose. ”
The news reporter continued, and surprisingly low quality images of this creature appeared on the screen. What kind of cameras did these people use? Potatoes? Before Doppio could listen to the reporter continue talking about this monster, Valentine changed the channel to something else.
“Boring! I wanna watch cartoons.”
Doppio jumped as he hugged a pillow, not even hearing Valentine walk towards the couch or pick up the remote.
“H-How are you so quiet?”
Doppio asked him, as Valentine sat down next to him and flicked through the channels. Valentine had been adjusting to this new technology quickly.
“Well, I’ve always been told that my footsteps are silent.”
He said, as he finally switched the channel to some old school Tom & Jerry cartoons. He looked pleased. Doppio just slumped onto the couch as his mind wandered. A monster. A monster was on the loose, and he just knew it had to have been a Stand user. But why? Why would a Stand user appear so quickly after him, Valentine, and Enrico got to America, not even a few weeks ago? Enrico could be heard walking into the kitchen and making himself a nice cup of coffee, getting ready to go off to do his church work.
Enrico spoke up and Doppio immediately jumped. He was always so skittish.
“I forgot to ask you to get groceries some time today. I would ask Valentine, but I’m still trying to force him to get a job.”
Valentine peaked up from behind the couch and stuck his tongue out at Enrico, acting like a reluctant child. Doppio shook slightly. Go outside? Where that monster’s lurking? He couldn’t! He didn’t want to!.. But, he didn’t have much of a choice. Enrico and Valentine had been nice enough to spare Doppio and Boss back in Roma, so the least he could do was try and repay them both the best he could. Doppio nervously got up from the couch as he went to the door and grabbed onto a black jacket that went nicely with his suit and tie. He’d just go out now and get it over and done with.
“I-I’ll just get it now then. I’ll see you soon.”
He quickly said, before putting on his black dress shoes and running out the door. Just get the groceries, and come back home. Simple as that.
Chapter 27: Scary Monsters (Part 2)
So far, so good. Doppio was holding two bags full of groceries mostly consisting of fruits, cereal, chicken, and a few other things. He only bought what Boss told him to get though, which is why he only had two bags and not much more. It wasn’t too dark out just yet, so Doppio still had time to get home before the sun even began to set. He didn’t know why he was so worried about this monster. It must've been something people blew way out of proportion! He really didn’t have anything to worry about. Though, as he continued walking, he realized how empty the streets were. He barely saw anyone on the sidewalk, and almost no cars were driving by. Were people taking the whole monster thing that seriously? As he looked around some more, he turned behind himself, spotting something dart quickly behind an alleyway. Nope. Nope. Absolutely not. He was not going to deal with this. He immediately turned back around and began to speed walk back home. Something was following him, but he wasn’t going to turn around and see what it was. Panic began to build up inside of him gradually. He had to stop panicking. He needed to calm himself down. He couldn’t afford to panic now. His arms shook as he continued to walk, feeling something stare at him from behind. Don’t turn around. Whatever he did, he couldn’t turn around. It would just make him panic more. He could swear he heard another pair of footsteps, along with heavy breathing. His eyes shook, and his pupils shrunk and began to turn another color. That’s when he felt something immediately grab one of his grocery bags, and begin to dart in front of him. That was it. That’s what set Doppio off, as he started running at the creature that just stole his bag. Doppio wasn’t Doppio anymore. His eyes green, hair long and spotted, and muscles more defined. This was Diavolo’s turn. Diavolo sprinted towards the thing that stole his bag, fueled by rage more than anything. How dare this pathetic thing scare his Doppio like that, and then steal his groceries? He had already brought out King Crimson as he ran after this thing. He could barely get a good look at it in his rage filled adrenaline rush, watching it run on all fours and dart into a dead end alley. He had this thing now. He stopped in front of the alley, finally getting a better look at the monster. It was hunched over, a blue and gold tail protruding out of its behind with the word ‘DIO’ lining it. It was dressed like an old horse jockey from the 1800’s, wearing a hat with that same word on it. ‘DIO’. It rummaged through the grocery bag, throwing the chicken to the side and instead focusing on the fruit, which Diavolo found odd. He didn’t care much though, as he let out a cough, alerting the creature. When the thing turned around it sent shivers down Diavolo’s spine. Its face was cracked, and its mouth had bandages along it as if it were desperately trying to hide the fact that it was more animalistic than humanoid. It bore raptor like teeth that looked razor sharp and even glinted in the small bit of light that's shining through in the alley. Diavolo stood his ground though. He was going to teach this animal a damn lesson. It growled, standing up and immediately lunging at Diavolo, its sharp nails jutting out through its gloves and trying to scratch at Diavolo. He dodged a few of the attacks, and used King Crimson to try and block one, the creature leaving a small scratch mark on his arm as it quickly attacked and ran off elsewhere, leaving the bag of groceries he ripped into behind. Diavolo barely even saw the guy run off. What the Hell was that all about? Was that the thing Doppio was so scared about? It didn’t seem to be the most threatening or dangerous from this encounter. Diavolo looked at the scratch on his arm. It wasn’t too deep, but it cut through his nice suit and was bleeding. That was a damn inconvenience, but he’d let Doppio deal with it. Besides, just because he may not have been boss of Passione anymore didn’t mean he was gonna just throw his identity around. Doppio can easily deal with the small things. A small little scratch isn’t gonna hurt.
When Doppio had gotten home, Valentine immediately noticed the scratch on his arm, the blood soaking through a bit of the sleeve. Enrico had gotten home shortly after, noticing the bandage on Doppio’s arm, seeing them both sitting on the couch and watching old cartoons.
“Woah, what happened to you, Doppio?”
Doppio looked up at Enrico, who looked visibly concerned despite it only being a small scratch.
“Oh. Well, I-I..”
Doppio hesitated as Valentine finished it for him,
“He told me he got jumped by a raptor person in an alley. Looks like those news reports about a monster on the streets were true!”
He laughed, not seeming too worried about it. Enrico on the other hand looked visibly worried.
“What?! Shouldn’t you guys be more concerned about this?”
He said, as Doppio and Valentine just looked at each other for a moment and then shrugged.
Valentine said, as both him and Doppio went back to watching their cartoons. Enrico opened his mouth to try and say something, but immediately closed it and rubbed his head.
“..I’m going to bed.”
He mumbled out, sighing and heading to his room. He prayed that whatever had happened to Doppio truly wasn’t anything serious. But he had a feeling that wasn’t the case.
Chapter 28: Scary Monsters (Part 3)
Valentine and Enrico looked at Doppio in utter shock, watching the guy walk into walls as if he couldn’t see them and sniffing the air like an animal. His body posture was odd too, and his hands were curled in front of him like a cat. Something was definitely wrong, and both Valentine and Enrico knew it had something to do with that scratch on his arm from yesterday. Enrico was in the kitchen making coffee like usual, but making sure to keep a good eye on Doppio who was standing around, looking at nothing and sniffing the air.
“Are you making coffee, Enrico?”
He asked, sniffing the air some more and supposedly following the smell. Enrico watched him, confused. Valentine was sitting on the couch and looking up at the scene from the back. Doppio continued to sniff the air.
“Where is it? Could you pour me a cup?”
Enrico just sort of stood there, watching Doppio almost trip over a chair, before feeling around and attempting to sit on it.
“Are you feeling alright, Doppio? You’re not acting right.”
Enrico finally spoke up, watching the pink haired boy continue to struggle with sitting in the chair.
“I’m feeling great! If anything, I've never felt better.”
Doppio replied, finally sitting in the chair right. Valentine got up from his seat and began to approach Doppio, reaching down to look at Doppio’s injury from the other day, lightly grabbing his arm. Doppio immediately hissed at Valentine and swiped at him, letting out an animalistic growl. Valentine recoiled, stepping back. Doppio’s round and amber eyes looked different somehow, his pupils now sharp slits. His teeth also looked sharper. Enrico quietly walked over towards Valentine, leaning over to whisper something to him.
“..You think Doppio’s been affected by a Stand?”
“Probably. That raptor he told me about.. It sort of reminds me of someone. I’m positive it’s gotta be a Stand or something.”
Valentine and Enrico whispered at each other a bit, as Doppio interrupted them.
“I heard that.”
The duo jumped, as they looked at Doppio who was just staring at the wall blankly. Valentine quickly nudged Enrico, gesturing to the door.
“We need to find this monster, and fast.”
Valentine and Enrico had left Doppio home alone for the time being, making sure to lock the door so he couldn’t get out and end up causing any trouble. The two of them scoured everywhere throughout the town, looking for this infamous monster. They had both come up with a plan and did what Doppio had done the day he was jumped. Valentine had bought a bag of groceries full of fruit and meat, the both of them suspecting this thing wanted food more than anything else. Enrico made sure to watch from a distance, watching Valentine slowly walk around, both of them waiting for something. One minute of waiting became thirty, then thirty minutes turned into an hour. Still, there was no sign of a monster or raptor person anywhere. Eventually, Enrico came out from hiding and both him and Valentine started to give up.
“Valentine, I don’t think we’re going to find this thing for a while. Are you sure it even exists?”
Enrico questioned, doubting this things existence now. Valentine looked determined and shook his head.
“I’m positive this thing is real! I don’t know why, but I think I’ve encountered one before in the past or something. Either way, we just need to wait a little longer! Please Pucci! I have a feeling this might help me jog some of my memory!”
Enrico gave Valentine a sigh and shook his head. Valentine slumped.
“Valentine, I have a feeling this thing might not show up ever. I understand you desperately want to find a way to figure out who you really were but maybe you’re being a bit.. Delusional?”
Enrico replied, already about to walk away.
“If you really think this raptor person exists, then you can stay here. I have a feeling Doppio might’ve just been affected by something else. Besides, it’s only been a few weeks since he got here. Do you really believe a Stand user would be after us so soon?”
Valentine just stared at Enrico, who rubbed his forehead and turned around to walk back home. Valentine just stared, unable to believe Enrico’s reaction. What was with him? Did he just not want to be bothered? Valentine knew damn well this raptor existed. He felt it. Yet, Enrico was going to turn around and basically call him crazy? Valentine clenched his fists.
“..Y-You don’t think I’m crazy or lying, do you Pucci?”
Enrico just looked at him for a moment, before turning back around. Valentine couldn’t believe this.
He yelled out, watching him continue to walk away. Valentine shook with slight rage.
“Then FINE! I-If you think I’m so batshit insane, then I’ll wait here and prove you wrong!”
Valentine yelled on deaf ears, Enrico having already left. He couldn’t believe this. Why didn’t Enrico believe him? Why is it once something Stand related is brought up he refuses to believe it now? Does he not want to be bothered? Is he scared of something? What could he possibly be scared of? Valentine was just unreasonably frustrated right now as he didn’t bother to continue thinking about it, turning around and stomping off, a bag of groceries still in hand. He was going to prove the existence of this raptor person.
Chapter 29: Scary Monsters (Part 4)
It was already getting dark out and the sun was starting to set. Almost four hours had passed and here was Valentine, walking around with a bag of groceries on the path to nowhere in an attempt to prove the existence of a raptor person. God, now Valentine understood why Enrico thought he was so ridiculous. Maybe this monster really didn’t exist and he was just trying so hard to find an excuse to remember his past. He decided it would be better to go home and tell Enrico how right he was, and that he was just being crazy. As he turned to go home, he heard yelling. Valentine looked around, before spotting Enrico, running right towards him, something big and pink chasing him.
He yelled, grabbing tightly onto Valentine’s arm as they both started running for their lives. As Valentine turned to glance back, that’s when he saw it and his suspicions were confirmed. A pink raptor with two different colored eyes was screeching and chasing after them, the words ‘DIADOP’ lined its body from the end of its tail to the tip of its forehead. Whatever outfit it was originally wearing was torn, and was ripped in certain places, the only regular piece of clothing not to be torn being a black tie around its neck. It was Doppio. He had been turned into a raptor. A fucking raptor. Valentine turned to glare at Enrico,
“I TOLD YOU RAPTOR PEOPLE EXIST!”
He yelled, as they both continued to run for their lives.
“Y-Yeah yeah, you don’t need to shout at me!”
“OOH, I DON’T NEED TO SHOUT DO I? YOU LITERALLY WALKED OUT ON ME AND BASICALLY TREATED ME LIKE I WAS IN THE WRONG!!”
Valentine snapped back, and Enrico groaned a little and rolled his eyes,
“Look, we can talk about this later! Right now, we need to focus on the fact that Doppio’s been turned into a literal dinosaur!”
Before Valentine could respond they were both forced to stop in their tracks as what looked to be a man dressed as a late 1800 horse jockey jumped in front of them, his eyes animalistic and wild, a blue and gold raptor tail jutting out from behind him. Valentine and Enrico looked back to see the Doppio raptor growl at them, slowly approaching them like they were prey. The raptor jockey seemed to be doing the same thing. Enrico and Valentine both pushed their backs against each other, ready to fight if need be.
“Valentine, you take the jockey and i’ll take Doppio.”
The duo looked at each other and nodded, as Enrico immediately leaped forward and started to distract Doppio, who tried to bite as Enrico and followed him again. Valentine was left with the jockey, who looked to be drooling out of its mouth and growling even louder than before, taking a few steps forward. Valentine, for some reason, felt like he’s seen him before. He couldn’t simply bring himself to try and fight him or do anything rash though. He knew he’s seen this guy before. Maybe in his past they were friends, or at least close somehow. Maybe he even had some answers. Valentine took a deep breath and slightly puffed out his chest, attempting to calmly approach the jockey, who bore its teeth. Valentine cleared his throat,
“E-Excuse me sir. My name is Fu-”
The jockey lunged at Valentine and tried to bite at him, attempting to slash at him. Valentine immediately dodged out of the way and backed up against a wall. Trying to socialize with him may be a bit harder than he originally thought.
Enrico was trying everything in his power to keep from Doppio trying to bite at him.
“Doppio! G-Get a hold of yourself! It’s me, Enrico!”
His pleas were unheard as Doppio growled and backed Enrico into a dark alleyway, leaving him cornered. The pink raptor bore its teeth and slowly started to approach Enrico, ready to lunge at him again. Enrico looked around for a moment, before spotting a trash can. He grabbed onto it and threw it at Doppio,
He yelled, as the raptor let out a screech and got a face full of garbage, stumbling back and attempting to shake trash out of its eyes. Enrico took this as a chance to run away again, before the raptor immediately bit down onto the back of Enrico’s shirt, throwing him to the ground. Enrico tried to get back up, but was pinned down as Doppio put his foot on Enrico’s chest, keeping him there. Enrico went pale as he gulped,
Valentine was continuously trying to talk sense into the raptor jockey, trying to befriend him or at the very least calm him down.
“Hey, jockey guy, listen to me for a sec!”
Valentine said, the jockey swiping at him and attempting to bite him. Valentine was able to dodge his attacks, using D4C to keep him at bay.
“E-Easy now! Come on, I don’t want any trouble!”
The jockey just looked at Valentine like he was food, and immediately lunged at him once more and swiped at him, ripping open Valentine’s shirt and knocking him back and onto his rear end. He felt over his chest for a moment, relieved that the jockey didn’t injure him at all. But now he was cornered, with this jockey slowly approaching him. If Valentine didn’t think quick, he was most likely going to die.
He stumbled over his words, trying his best to back up away from the jockey who was slowly approaching him.
“Look, I don’t want any trouble mister.. Uh..”
Valentine looked over the jockey, spotting the words ‘DIO’ on his hat.
“..DIO? Dio. So, Dio, I don’t mean any harm! You can let up your attack now!”
He let out an awkward chuckle, the jockey still coming closer. Valentine looked around for a moment, before realizing that he still had a bag of groceries. Food! If this guy was more animal than human, food might be able to calm it! He reached into it, and grabbed an apple. Do raptors eat apples? He didn’t really know, so he hesitantly held his hand out.
“Are you hungry? I-I’ve got this!”
He gulped, shakily holding out his hand with the apple. The jockey looked confused for a moment, before curiously sniffing at the apple. Valentine gulped, flinching as he approached. The jockey growled at Valentine for a moment before quickly snatching the apple away, proceeding to eat it. Valentine looked at the jockey, it supposedly having calmed down. Valentine looked around for a moment before taking this chance to try and converse with him.
“Soo.. Will you not attack me anymore?”
The jockey, supposedly named Dio, slightly growled in response.
“I’ll take that as a yes.”
Valentine sat up a bit more, watching Dio continue to eat the apple.
“Is Dio your real name or..?”
The jockey just looked at him for a moment, before going back to eating. Valentine let out a slight huff, as he stood up. He leaned down a bit to hold out his hand. The raptor looked confused.
“I’m Funny Valentine, former twenty-third President. Have we met before?”
The raptor just looked at his hand as he finished eating the core of the apple. He sniffed at Valentine’s hand, before immediately biting onto it. Valentine flinched and started trying to shake him off.
“O-Ow!! Hey! B-Bad raptor, off! OFF!”
He continued to wave his arm around, as the jockey had a good grip on his hand. Whoever Valentine and this jockey were in the past, they must not have been friends if this was the reaction he got. As the raptor’s grip on Valentine’s hand loosened and let go, Valentine waved his hand in the air in an attempt to stop it from hurting, before looking over to see a disheveled pink haired man holding a knocked out Enrico Pucci over his shoulder. The man’s green eyes quickly landed on Valentine, who tensed. Was this an enemy?
“You, Funny. What the Hell happened and how did my suit get completely ruined?”
Valentine looked around for a moment before realizing the guy was talking to him. The raptor jockey growled at the man and ducked behind Valentine as a cover.
“M-Me?.. Uh.. I’m sorry sir but, who are you?”
The man looked annoyed,
“Who I am isn’t important. What’s important is why I smell like shit and why I look even more like shit!”
The man raised his voice, before spotting the raptor jockey hiding behind Valentine, hissing at him. The pink haired man immediately got enraged and pointed at the jockey,
“You! This is all your damn fault! You went ahead and stole my precious Doppio’s groceries like some sort of disgusting primate! I’m gonna kick the shi-”
“‘Scuse me, did you say Doppio?”
The man looked confused for a moment, before realizing who Valentine actually was.
“Oh. You’re the guy who’s been really nice to my Doppio.”
The man’s focus immediately shifted from the jockey onto Valentine. He held out his free hand for a handshake,
“Didn’t think I’d actually end up meeting you myself, and since you’ve been so kind to my Doppio I might as well introduce myself. Diavolo.”
Valentine went to shake Diavolo’s hand, the jockey growling and hissing when he did. Valentine and Diavolo looked at him for a moment before looking back at each other.
“..What are we gonna do with that thing?”
Diavolo questioned, as Valentine slightly leaned down to the jockey’s height.
“We can’t leave him out here.. So why not bring him home?”
Diavolo looked at Valentine like he was crazy.
“...You can’t be serious.”
“No, really! We can keep him with us instead of leaving him out here to keep causing more havoc.”
Diavolo reached up to rub his forehead,
“ Sei pazzo.. ”
“No, nothing. Don’t worry about it. Let’s just hurry and get back home, I feel a headache coming on.”
Valentine reached down to grab the jockey’s wrist and gesture him to follow. The jockey followed.. But not without putting up a bit of a fight and clawing up Valentine’s face.
Chapter 30 already.. And I'm not even a quarter done with this story. There's a long road ahead.
Chapter 31: To Morioh-Cho!
Enrico was not thrilled at all with having to keep three.. No, technically four people in his fairly small home. The basement was only so big and it seemed their new raptor friend, who Valentine named Diego (for some odd reason) wasn’t too thrilled to sleep on his living room couch. Eventually, Enrico got to the point where he was begging Valentine, Doppio, and even Diavolo to try and get a job so they could help support Enrico and his finances. During the night, Enrico would think to himself about where he went wrong with resetting the universe. It had only been a week since they met Diego, and there hasn’t been a boring day since. And Enrico was growing tired of the excitement. He just wanted to relax again. Maybe go on a vacation somewhere (preferably not Italy) to keep the others occupied while he laid back and relaxed. Perhaps to the Bahamas.. Maybe Hawaii? Luckily for Enrico, it seemed his prayers for a vacation were answered the next morning.
“ BREAKING NEWS: A mysterious meteorite has crash-landed near the small town of Morioh, Japan. Police are ushering locals and tourists to keep away from the meteor, as scientists conclude it shows signs of life. More investigation is underway. ”
Valentine couldn’t help but let out a groan,
“Jeez! Can’t these news reporters ever take a break? This might just be the third time something bad has been shown on the T.V, and then we go on this journey to find out if it’s a Stand user or not.”
Enrico was quick to butt in,
“Actually, I was going to suggest we travel anyway.”
Valentine looked up to him surprised, as heavy footsteps could be heard in the distance. Doppio was quick to pop into the room in loose pajamas, looking like he had just woken up.
“Did I hear travel ?”
Diego was quick to show up behind him, confused as to what everyone was talking about.
“Pucci, you can’t be serious! Not even a few weeks ago we got back from Italy.”
Valentine complained, not really feeling like doing anything.
“Valentine, have you noticed how crowded this house has been getting as of late? I have to take care of three other people, four if you count Diavolo, and I barely have any time to myself anymore. Don’t you think a nice little vacation would be a nice destresser?”
Valentine pouted a little as he thought about it,
“..Well, where are we going anyway?”
“Japan. Morioh, to be more precise.”
“Where the meteor is?!”
“What? I did a bit of research and I heard there’s a nice restaurant there.”
“Pucci, you did a bit of research in under the span of a few minutes? After the news report?”
“I have quick fingers.”
Valentine slumped and groaned, while Doppio looked thrilled.
“Japan? Boss has always wanted to go to Japan! I’ll start packing immediately.”
Doppio ran back to his room, excited beyond belief.
“You hear that, Boss? We’re going to Japan!”
Diego was still confused however, letting out a low growl. Valentine got up from the couch to go and give him a small pat on the head, as well as start packing.
Valentine gave Enrico a slightly concerned look,
“I hope you know that Stand users attract other Stand users. Even if we go to a different country, we still have a chance of getting attacked and thrown into another adventure.”
Enrico looked back at him and smiled a little. It was filled with slight melancholy. That’s when Valentine noticed he looked a little older. Was he stressed?
“..I know that risk all too well. I think we’ll be fine. Just don’t worry about it too much, alright? Think of this as a good thing. We get to travel and have a nice little vacation for a while.”
It felt like Enrico was trying to reassure himself more than he was trying to reassure Valentine. Valentine decided not to say anything about it and nod, gesturing for the tired Diego next to him to follow so they could start packing their things.
“Things are going to be okay.”
Enrico said to himself,
“This is just.. How things are now. And I have to live with that. God gave me this chance to live again, and I’ll just have to take it face value.”
Enrico could his hands shake a little, but he made sure to clench them into a fist and try to make his way to his room.
“This is my life now, and I have to make the best of it.”
Chapter 32: The Lock
Before you read this chapter, I would like to apologize for my lack of pacing in any previous chapters.
I've never genuinely written anything before, and anything I have written were shitposts or cringy self-insert fanfiction I wrote over 5 to 6 years ago (maybe longer).
The only reason I really started making this fanfiction was because Hirohiko Araki inspired me to do so, and I genuinely felt influenced by his work and dedication.
I felt a connection to his characters, and it made me want to write this story and hopefully attempt to delve into the bad guys' mindsets more and even expand on their characters.
However, I feel I'm not doing the best job at it, and I'm sorry.
I'm not going to make up excuses for my bad story writing anymore, and I want to take full responsibility for my lack of effort.
I would just like for anyone still reading this far to hopefully give me the chance to improve myself.
After two days of preparing a flight, attempting to figure out how to hide Diego’s tail, and Enrico buying a Japanese 101 book to help on the trip, they were off to the small town of Morioh. The tons of landmarks there were plentiful surprisingly enough. A popular Italian restaurant, a salon that influenced the nation as a whole, an odd rock with what looked to be a face the town deemed ‘Angelo’, and the list can go on. But, despite the landmarks, it was still the small town of Morioh. Tourism was actually low there, and the population was even lower. Even with the addition of the meteorite crash landing near the town, there still weren’t a lot of people. It was surprisingly quiet, and Enrico liked that. The others, however, weren’t too thrilled, and visibly showed their slight annoyance and boredom once they got to the hotel they had rented out for a while. Valentine and Diego shared one room, while Doppio, Diavolo, and Enrico shared the other.
“..This place wasn’t as busy and bubbly as I imagined.”
Doppio looked out the window of the hotel, sitting on the edge of the bed.
“It’s so quiet and there aren’t a lot of people here.”
“And that’s a bad thing?”
Doppio pouted as he looked back to Enrico, who seemed content.
“I’m serious Enrico. This place is boring! I mean, I’ve always liked the idea of going to Japan and relaxing, but I also want stuff to do. The landmarks are okay, and that Italian restaurant sounds nice..”
Enrico just quietly hummed along to what Doppio was saying, looking over his book of basic Japanese. Doppio continued to ramble about how bored he was and the landmarks before his train of thought was interrupted by Valentine and Diego, opening their door.
“Me and Diego are gonna go out for a walk around town, any of you wanna come?”
Doppio immediately perked up and hopped off his bed.
“I do! I do!”
He bounced up and down happily, while Enrico continued to lay on his bed. He looked over to Valentine and tossed him the Japanese 101 book.
“Catch. Now’s a good time to learn a bit while you’re out and about.”
“You’re not coming with, Pucci?”
“..I don’t feel like going out right now. You three-.. Er, four, have fun.”
Doppio smiled a little by the fact that Enrico included Diavolo like he was another person, while Valentine looked a little saddened to see Enrico try to be distant from them. Either way, Valentine nodded, walking out with Diego and Doppio.
Their walk around the town was fairly normal. Valentine tried to practice a bit of basic Japanese while they all butchered the language terribly. Except for Diego. He didn’t really talk much except making small noises here and there. They were all coming back home from looking at some of the outer landmarks, deciding to wait to go to that fancy Italian restaurant for another day. As they were talking, Valentine stepped on something kinda squishy.
“Ah, ew! What did I just step on?”
He stepped back a little bit, as they all looked at the bag Valentine stepped on. Diego leaned down to sniff it, then immediately recoiled and hissed. Blood slowly began to seep out of the bag, and all of them recoiled along with Diego.
“W-What was in that bag?!”
Doppio hid behind Valentine, as they all stared at the bag.
“Must’a been a puppy or somthin’.”
A voice from nearby could be heard, and the group all turned to look at a short man sitting on a graffitied bench, picking at his teeth with a toothpick. Doppio decided to speak up, a little suspicious.
“How do you know if it was a puppy or not?”
“I don’t, but I can assume it was cus it let out a whimper when ya stepped on it with that unrelentin’ force of yours.”
Valentine let out a small gasp, feeling guilt well up inside of him. Doppio still tried to be suspicious, especially since the guy’s English was pretty good too considering they were in Japan. Doppio was about to say something before Valentine started talking,
“H-How did I not hear it? Oh.. Should we bury it?”
The small man hopped off of the bench and flicked his toothpick elsewhere, walking towards the group.
“Even if ya bury it, there’s prolly a chance someone’ll find out ya killed it. You’ll have a bad status in town, and word spreads real quick.”
Valentine looked convinced, and Doppio just kinda stared.
“..You’re not believing this guy, are you? He’s gonna con you out of someth-“
“Y’know, pink guy, people might think you stepped on the dog too and think of you as a bad person along with tall blondie here.”
Doppio was taken aback by that.
“What?! Th-That’s ridiculous!”
The little guy chuckled at bit,
“Y’know, I’ll go easy on you guys. How about you pay me, and I won’t tell anybody ‘bout any of this?”
“You want us to pay you so you don’t rat us out?! That’s stupid! Let’s get going, this guy is just a bad con artist.”
Doppio grabbed onto Valentine’s arm so they could get moving, when a lock formed on Valentine’s chest, stopping him in place.
“Ah.. W-What the..?”
The lock onto grew bigger on Valentine’s chest, making it harder for him to move as he began to slump to the ground.
“Y-You’re… A Stand user..?”
Valentine coughed out, as the lock grew heavy. The man reached into his pocket for another toothpick and chuckled.
“That’s right. The name’s Tamami, and my Stand is The Lock . It grows bigger the more guilty ya feel.”
Doppio glared at Tamami again, immediately ready to run at him, when he stepped on something squishy. Without noticing, Doppio had stepped on the dogs corpse.
A lock began to form on his chest. It was smaller than Valentine’s, but it was big enough to heavily inhibit Doppio from moving much. He stumbled back. How could he have been so stupid as to step on the corpse again? He really needs to pay more attention to his surroundings. He turned to spot Diego however, who was still there the entire time.
“Diego! His Stand still hasn’t affected you yet, warn Enrico of an enemy Stand!”
Diego just stared at Tamami, while Doppio continued to try and warn him.
“D-Diego, aren’t you listening?!”
The jockey didn’t respond, and began to walk forward. He stepped onto the dog’s corpse in the plastic bag, and then continued walking. Everyone went wide eyed, including Tamami, who backed up a little.
“W-What? Shouldn’t you f-feel guilty ‘bout that?!”
Diego approached Tamami, and leaned in close to his face, bearing teeth.
“Take the locks off , or I’ll bite your face off .”
The raptor snarled, and Tamami fell back, slowly watching his face become less human.
“H-H-Hey! I didn’t m-mean anythin’ ‘bout that! I-I was jus’.. Playin’ around? Y’see? H-Heh…”
Diego snarled again, reaching down and grabbing Tamami by the collar. The man let out a high pitched shriek,
“Okay! Okay! I-I’ll let off my Stand! P-Please don’t eat me!”
The locks on Valentine and Doppio’s chest disappeared, and they were both back on their feet once more. Diego threw Tamami to the ground, who let out a yell and ran off, terrified. Valentine quickly approached Diego, putting a hand on his shoulder.
“I didn’t know you could talk! How come you never spoke when we first met?”
Diego swiped Valentine’s hand away,
“Because I never felt like it was important ‘till now.”
“Well.. Now that we know you can talk, do you have a real name other than Diego?”
The jockey was silent for a moment, looking into the distance.
“..No. Diego is just fine.”
Enrico was just about to take a well deserved nap, having been lost in his thoughts for so long until someone burst through his hotel door.
“Hey! Hey, quiet down. Take a deep breath, and then speak.”
Valentine did just that. He breathed in deeply, and then let out a nice long sigh before speaking up again.
“Diego can talk.”
“Diego can talk.”
“Valentine, he’s not an animal. Of course he can talk.”
“He’s literally half raptor, Pucci.”
“Doesn’t change the fact he can talk.”
“Valentine, can you explain to me why you’re really talking to me right now?”
Silence on both ends. Valentine looked down for a moment, twirling a strand of his hair with one hand.
“..I-I wanted to sweeten the blow on you, seeing as you’re really stressed..”
He was silent again,
“...We were attacked by a Stand user on our way back.”
“I knew it.”
“L-Look, it wasn’t as bad as you think Pucci! Diego was able to beat him for us, but.. Well, we let him live and-“
“And you think other Stand users will come after us because of it?”
Enrico reached up to rub his forehead, sighing. They had just got here, and they already ran into a Stand user? Valentine could see the annoyance and slight disappointment in Enrico’s face, making him feel even more guilty than when he stepped on that poor dog.
“Valentine. You.. I understand you have good intentions but..”
He leaned forward, head in his hands. He was quiet for a good bit.
“..But, can we try to have at least a few normal days here? I just.. Want to pretend I’m normal for a little while.”
“We’re not normal though.”
Valentine immediately replied, Enrico still not looking at him.
“How normal could we possibly get? I’m literally the 23rd President of the United States, and we recently befriended a schizophrenic and a dinosaur. I don’t think Stands are a natural phenomenon either.”
Enrico continued to look away.
“..Pucci, if it makes you feel a little better, tomorrow we’ll go to that Italian restaurant. We’ll pretend it’s a normal day like we used to back in America. Just the two of us.”
A soft smile appeared on Enrico’s face, but it still didn’t look the happiest. It looked more like he was reminiscing on something.
“That sounds nice. I’ll think about it.”
Valentine nodded, backing away from his room and closing his door slowly, slumping against it, letting out a sigh. Doppio and Diego were both waiting for him. Valentine looked at them, sighing.
“..You heard the entire conversation, right?”
They both nodded, and Valentine covered his face as he groaned.
“So, how are you planning to not get attacked by a Stand user, mister good intentions?”
Diego teased, putting a hand on his hip.
“I dunno.. Maybe I could send out a Valentine decoy? Ugh, no, maybe they’d get suspicious as to why I’m alone..”
“Or maybe you could just not worry about it?”
Diego continued to persist, now crossing his arms. Doppio nodded along with him,
“Diego’s right. If you worry about it too much then it’d just ruin the day for you and Enrico. Pretend like nothing happened today! Me and Diego will make sure to leave you two to yourselves, right?”
“I have no reason to butt in. You two might as well turn into homosexuals and I could care less.”
“Good enough! I’ll make sure we stay occupied while you two are out as well.”
Valentine just smiled and nodded.
“Thank you both. I’ll make sure to bring you to that Italian restaurant as repayment.”
Doppio scratched the back of his neck, giving a timid smile,
“Aww.. You don’t have to do that!”
“If you do then I’m going to warn you, I’ll be ordering a lot of stuff. Y’know, raptor diet and such.”
Diego gave a malicious chuckle, knowing well he just wanted Valentine to blow all his money on him for no good reason. Diego didn’t know why he targeted Valentine for his teasing specifically, but he couldn't bring himself to like the guy. Either way, Valentine laughed and eventually they all said goodnight to each other as Valentine got to his room and laid back on his bed, hearing Diego’s snores from across the room. He was surprised he was out cold so fast, but didn’t dwell on it much longer. Now he had to just do what Doppio told him. Forget about today. Pretend like it never happened. He buried his face in his pillow, trying so hard to fall asleep. Why was it so hard for him to not worry?
The chapter title is a reference to a song made by The Cars.
I also felt it's a good representation of the annoyance Enrico is feeling. (and it's a good song)
Chapter 34: Red Hot Chili Pepper (Part 1)
“Ready to go, Valentine?”
“Just a second!”
Valentine was in his room, having tried on a few of the shirts and pants that Enrico had decided to pack for him. He wanted to try and blend in more for Enrico to make this day the most average he possibly could. He had settled with wearing a shirt that Enrico had given him before they got to Japan. Near the collar of the shirt, the letters AC/DC in a nice pastel pink was written. The shirt had a picture of some people with their eyes blacked out, and the words Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap was written underneath them in front of a checkered pattern. A pastel blue color lined the collar and the short sleeves. On top of the shirt, he wore a soft pink hoodie, leaving the front unzipped to show off his shirt, wearing nice dark blue jeans to go with it. He had a hard time getting used to these modern day clothes, but he felt he adjusted well into society so far. Walking out of the room, he spotted Enrico in a different pair of clothes as well, his more laid back and less flashy. He wore a striped purple button up shirt, the sleeves cuffed at his elbows, simple jeans to go with it. Valentine felt like he might’ve overdone himself, trying a little too hard to look normal.
“You’re wearing the AC/DC shirt I gave you?”
Valentine perked up, looking down at his shirt.
“Oh, yeah!.. Is that a bad thing?”
“Of course not. I’m just surprised you’re wearing it. I didn’t think you’d ever show an interest in modern day music.”
Valentine blinked a few times.
“..Is Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap a kind of music?”
“I think I’ll have to educate you with the classics, Valentine.”
Enrico laughed a small bit, gesturing for Valentine to follow him.
“Now let’s hurry it up. That restaurant shouldn’t be far from here.”
Valentine smiled and gladly followed him. Enrico looked happier, or at least less stressed. That made Valentine a little happier too as they made their way to the restaurant, talking and chatting happily as if nothing could go wrong. Valentine, however, felt on edge. He could’ve sworn something was following them all the way there.
Doppio and Diego were bored. Really bored. So bored in fact that they were just walking around town doing nothing. They didn’t know each other very well, and without Valentine there neither of them were sure how to start conversation. That’s when they both decided it’d be better to head home, before they heard some commotion in the middle of town.
“Jeez, that’s a lot of people..”
“Hey, it looks like it’ll keep us occupied.”
Diego immediately made his way through the crowd, shoving people out of the way with Doppio following behind, apologizing for Diego’s actions.
“Laa~dies and gents,”
Diego and Doppio got near the front of the crowd, both spotting a tall, long purple haired man in extremely flashy getup, holding a guitar and looking as if he was ready to play it, standing on a fairly cheap looking stage. Honestly, the two couldn’t fully comprehend how this guy could’ve gotten this thing here in the middle of town overnight.
“Are you ready for a once in a lifetime spectacle?!”
The man yelled, and some cheers could be heard across the crowd. Doppio tried to cover his ears, the intense loud noises sometimes stressing him out and giving him headaches. Diego, however, was suspicious of this man. Just by the way he dressed there was something odd about him. His train of thought was immediately cut off as the man began to shred wildly on his guitar, making both Diego and Doppio jump back.
“D-Diego, we should hurry up and get out of here! This must be some s-sort of concert!”
He yelled over the cheers of the crowd and the guitar playing, and Diego rolled his eyes and grabbed onto Doppio’s wrist, attempting to pull him out of the crowd. That was until they were both stopped by the purple haired guitar player, who called them out as they tried to leave.
“Hey hey hey! Now, it looks like we’ve got ourselves a couple o’ newcomers!”
Diego and Doppio nervously turned around, as the spotlight was put onto them.
“I don’t think we’ve seen you two before! In this town, everybody knows everyone! Ain’t that right, folks?”
The man shredded on the guitar again, as the crowd cheered. It seemed this man was extremely popular here in town. The duo slowly stepped back, ready to book it, but as the crowd cheered on they realized they were stuck, and were slowly being pushed closer towards the stage.
“Hey hey, how about you two tell me your names?”
The guitarist kneeled down near the edge of the stage to look at the two, as they shared glances before Doppio decided to speak up.
“Uh.. I-I’m Doppio and this is.. Diego..?”
He said fairly nervously, not even sure what this guy was planning. That’s when his expression turned cold, but his cool smile stayed.
“Foreigners! What a shock to see some in our small little town of Morioh.”
Both Doppio and Diego were forced up onto the stage, getting electrocuted a few times as they were thrown onto it. Diego could’ve sworn he saw a yellow figure quickly disappear from behind them.
“Look alive, folks! Because now I’ve got a new special act for you all!”
The man shredded a bit on his guitar, as electricity sparked at his feet, a bird-like yellow figure appearing next to him. It was a Stand. Immediately, Diego and Doppio knew they were in deep trouble.
Chapter 35: Red Hot Chili Pepper (Part 2)
The crowd’s cheers grew louder, as electricity sparked around the purple haired man. The audience must’ve thought they were putting on some sort of act, which wasn’t good at all
“Hey! Who the Hell are you?”
Diego growled out, getting to his feet. The man almost looked offended.
“Who am I?”
He furiously shredded on his guitar,
“ Who am I?! I’m the one, the only , Otoishi Akira! The most famous musician in all of Morioh!”
Diego couldn’t help but laugh.
“Then that explains why I don’t know who you are.”
Akira looked enraged beyond belief,
“You dare try and belittle me?! I’m more popular than you’ll ever be in a lifetime !”
“I was literally the most famous horse jockey in all of my country, but go off mate.”
Doppio stood next to Diego, a little surprised.
“Horse jockey?.. I suppose that explains the outfit.”
Akira got into position and finished playing on his guitar, his yellow, bird like electric Stand looking just as furious as its user.
“Why don’t you two stop talking already and fight?! I heard what happened to Tamami. You two are hurting our business!”
Diego and Doppio gave each other a confused look. Business? Whatever business these two ran, it definitely didn’t mean anything good. The two got into a stance, as the crowd cheered.
“These people think this is some kind of game. This Otoishi guy must have most of this town wrapped around his finger..”
“Yeah, so we better take him out quick and get some answers. Doppio, take out your Stand and get him down quick. Your Stand has good offense and defense.”
Doppio gave Diego a slightly worried look, and gulped.
“..Uhm.. O-Only Boss can use King Crimson fully.”
“I can’t use my Stand to its fullest extent.”
“Are you trying to tell me you can’t fight?”
“Well, no! I-I can still use his arms and Epitah ..”
“What’s an Epitah ?”
“Look, can we just focus on Otoishi right now?”
Diego rolled his eyes, his hands turning into claws as his face cracked a little. Doppio on the other hand, summoned King Crimson’s arms, Epitah appearing on his forehead. Akira couldn’t help but laugh a little.
“Now aren’t you two scary? Come on, show me what you’ve got!”
Akira shredded on his guitar as his Stand practically vanished in the blink of an eye. Doppio closed his eyes for a moment, before immediately turning around.
“Diego, watch out!”
Diego was barely even able to look behind himself before Doppio slashed in the direction of the Stand, it barely being able to dodge the attack.
“I admire your speed, but you’ll never be able to keep up with my Red Hot Chili Pepper !”
The Stand vanished again, before appearing in front of Diego. Doppio took no time to wait as he quickly pushed Diego out of the way, as Red Hot Chili Pepper rammed into Doppio, sending electric waves throughout his body and knocking him back. Akira recalled his Stand, it disappearing and reappearing right next to him. The crowd looked amazed, as they all watched the scene unfold.
“What amazing special effects!”
“How are they doing that?”
Diego looked out at the crowd, none of them being able to see Doppio or Akira’s Stands, thinking this is all some sort of show Akira put on for them. He looked back to see Doppio, laying on the stage floor, completely knocked out.
“Diego, was it? Your friend was impressive, seemingly being able predict my attacks before they even came. However, now that he practically sacrificed himself for you, I’ll be sure to take you out with ease!”
Diego started to look more animalistic, his skin looking more scaly as his eyes darkened. He immediately turned to pick up Doppio’s body, which was smoking from the electricity, and hopped over the crowd as he ran off. Akira just laughed as he watched him run.
“Sorry folks, but it seems the show’s over for today!”
He jumped off the stage as dramatically as he could, landing on his feet as he ran after them, the crowd cheering for him.
“We love you, Akira-kun!”
“Go get them!”
Diego saw Akira barely even jog after them, seemingly taking his time as his Stand dispersed and disappeared into a telephone pole.
“So your Stand really is pure electricity, eh?”
Diego mumbled to himself, looking down at Doppio, who was still knocked out cold.
“This won’t go well.”
Chapter 36: Red Hot Chili Pepper (Part 3)
As Diego ran through town and down the street, he realized that he needed to find an open place. Somewhere that didn’t have electricity so the Stand couldn’t follow them. Diego ran through a few people, some shouting obscenities at him as he ran past. He spotted someone holding a phone and snatched it away from him quickly.
“I’ll give it back!”
Diego yelled to the person, running off and into the outskirts of Morioh where there was no electrical circuits or wires to be seen. He immediately placed Doppio onto the grass and dialed a number onto the phone. Enrico had given them all his phone number just in case if something went wrong, and Diego was able to remember it clearly. He put the phone to his ear and tapped one of his feet quickly.
“Pick up pick up pick up…”
“You know, I think I saw somewhere about there being a famous musician here in Morioh.”
Enrico spoke up, deciding to start another conversation with Valentine on their way to the restaurant.
“Really? That just makes me question why this town’s community is so small. There seems to be so much here!”
Enrico nodded along, before feeling his phone buzz in his pocket. He reached in and took it out, seeing it was a call from an unknown number.
“Who’s calling you, Pucci?”
“..No idea. It must not be too important, then.”
He replied, and ignored the call as they both went back to chatting.
Diego looked at the phone screen to see that the person on the other end ignored him. He let out a loud yell of frustration, kicking out the ground.
“Fuck! The one time I actually bothered using your bloody number and you don’t pick up?!”
He threw the phone on the ground and slumped, looking over to Doppio’s unmoving body. He silently hoped Doppio wasn’t dead right now, because if he was he knew both Valentine and Enrico would murder him.
“That sounds like a real shame, Diego.”
Diego perked up, and looked down at the phone he just threw.
The phone began to spark as a laugh could be heard, Red Hot Chili Pepper forming as it came out of the phone.
“Despite you having figured out that my Stand runs solely on electricity, you forget that batteries are a source of electricity too?”
The Stand mockingly shook its head,
“Tsk tsk, and I was hoping you’d be smarter than that. Either way, I’ll be sure to get rid of the both of you quickly.”
Diego stepped back, as the Stand immediately tried to charge at him. It stopped in place before being able to hit Diego, looking back to see that it was stuck to the phone. Red Hot Chili Pepper struggled to try and remove itself from the phone, looking around for another source of electricity to jump to, not finding any other source in this barren field far from Morioh. Diego circled the Stand from a safe distance, letting out a laugh.
“I may not be the most educated when it comes to this new fancy tech, but since your Stand runs solely on electricity then the best way to beat you would be to isolate you from your main power source. Good thing you were stupid enough to follow me.”
Diego sat down on a nearby rock,
“I also assume that your Stand won’t last too long out here, seeing as it takes up a good bit of energy. If I’m right, you have precisely five minutes to tell me everything I want to know before you die.”
Diego raised a finger,
“Now tell me, who’s the bloke that you work for?”
Chapter 37: Pearl Jam (Part 1)
“ Trattoria Trussardi , huh?”
Valentine and Enrico both stood in front of the famous Italian restaurant. Just by looking at the outside it seemed pretty extra. Valentine slightly shoved Enrico,
“Well, what are we waiting for? Let’s get inside already! I’m starving!”
The duo both finally entered Trattoria Trussardi , taking a look around. It looked just like what an Italian restaurant would. Tables with at least 3-4 chairs surrounding them, vases of different colored flowers right in the middle of them. It looked a little plainer than what Valentine had expected, but Enrico didn’t seem to mind it. If anything, it made him feel at home. The one thing that put them off, however, was the fact that the place was.. Empty. Valentine and Enrico were the only ones there.
“..Do you think we may have come at the wrong time?”
Valentine whispered to Enrico, as they walked to an empty table.
“I don’t think so. There was an open sign outside.”
“But, why isn’t there anyone else here? You’d think there’d be a few other people here.”
“I’m not sure. Maybe this place isn’t as popu-“
Enrico was cut off by a man in a chef’s outfit popping up right behind them, neither of them having heard him enter the room.
“ Buongiorno , good morning!”
They both jumped, but the man continued talking.
“My name is Tonio Trussardi! But everyone knows me as Chef Trussardi.”
Tonio leaned down to look at the duo, almost like he was examining and inspecting them as if he were some sort of robot.
“You must be foreigners! I’ll be sure to give you two some exquisite dishes then!”
He leaned in to look at Valentine closely,
“You look anxious and slightly unkempt. The dandruff in your hair shows your stress.”
He turned to examine Enrico,
“You’re even more stressed! The slight wrinkles on your face make you look older, and the bags under your eyes shows a lack of sleep.”
Tonio leaned back as he thought, snapping his fingers as he figured it out.
“Right! I know exactly what you two need, wait here.”
“W-Wait, you didn’t even give us-“
Enrico wasn’t even able to finish his sentence as the man ran back into his kitchen.
The pair just looked at each other, and Valentine shrugged.
“Maybe he gives foreigners surprise dishes?”
“Surprise dishes for foreigners? For some reason that doesn’t sound too promising.”
Valentine looked at the table, perking up a bit as he reached down to pick up a glass of what looked to be wine.
“When did that chef get us drinks?”
They both were a little on edge now, as Enrico looked down to see a glass of water in front of him. But Valentine shook his head as he continued talking.
“Oh, maybe I’m just being paranoid.. He must’ve poured them when we weren’t looking.”
Valentine hesitated for a moment before taking a sip of his wine, immediately freezing up. It was silent for a moment, and Enrico looked visibly worried.
Valentine took a deep breath,
“This wine is the best damn thing I’ve ever drunk! It’s like the juice inside of it was harvested from the richest of grape vines, and squeezed directly inside!”
He took another big gulp of the wine,
“Ah! The aftertaste is even more satisfying! It’s like heaven in a glass! How can someone make something as simple as wine taste so amazing?”
Enrico just sort of stared at Valentine, rubbing his forehead.
“..Valentine, it’s literally just wine.”
“The best wine in the world!”
“Can’t say I’m overreacting when you haven’t even tried it.”
“I don’t drink any sort of alcoholic beverages, Valentine.”
Valentine huffed, sitting back in his seat. He scratched the back of his head.
“Then drink your boring water! I’m gonna sit here with my amazing tasting wine.”
He took another sip of his wine, as he continued to scratch at his head. Enrico took notice of this.
“Are you alright, Valentine? You’re scratching at yourself pretty.. Intensely.”
“I-I don't know! I just got this sudden urge to itch at my scalp, and now I can’t stop!”
Valentine continued to itch until he pulled out a clump of hair, the both of them looking both afraid and disgusted. This was definitely a Stand, as Enrico got up from his seat to find that chef, Valentine continuing to scratch at his scalp.
“Hey! Trussardi! What in God’s name did you put in Valentine’s wine?!”
He was about to storm after Tonio, before Valentine ended up stopping him.
“Pucci, wait a second..”
Enrico turned to see Valentine looking just fine, as if nothing had happened. His hair looked cleaner, and even shined a little.
“..I think I’m okay! And, look! My hair is all smooth and sparkly! Whatever that chef put in the wine did this.”
Valentine didn’t look too bothered by this. If anything, he looked enthused by the fact that his hair was all nice and soft. Enrico just blinked a few times, turning back to look at the chef who had just finished their food.
“Oh? Is something wrong?”
Before Enrico could speak up, Valentine cut him off.
“Nothing at all! If anything, I feel better than ever!”
Tonio smiled warmly, walking over to their table and setting their food down. Enrico reluctantly sat back into his chair, staring down at both his and Valentine’s plates. Valentine slightly picked at his food with a fork, kind of finding it underwhelming.
“..Is this just regular old pasta?”
Tonio shook his head quickly,
“No no, it’s a type of pasta called Carbonara . Made with a type of cured meat called Guinicale , along with Paremesan and Pecorino Romano . The main ingredients consist of eggs, with bits of pepper sprinkled on top. Go ahead and try it!”
Valentine gave Tonio a slightly suspicious look, but went with it anyway, eating a good bit of the Carbonara before getting loaded with a blast of flavor.
“W-Woah~! This tastes so amazing!”
Tonio looked pleased, as he turned to walk back into the kitchen before being stopped by Enrico.
“Excuse me, Chef Trussardi,”
Enrico turned to look at Tonio, who seemed a little confused.
“What exactly do you put in your food, if you don’t mind me asking?”
Tonio paused for a moment, as he stared off elsewhere to think. Eventually, he looked back at Enrico with a smile.
“Just a special little extra ingredient! Nothing more, nothing less!”
He turned back around, and walked off into the kitchen.
Chapter 38: Pearl Jam (Part 2)
“I don’t trust that Trussardi.”
Enrico bluntly stated once Tonio left the room. Valentine looked at him like he just insulted his entire bloodline,
“What?! But he seems so nice! That wine he gave me actually helped my hair!”
“That wine made you rip out your hair and scratch at your scalp until you practically bled! I wouldn’t call that nice.”
Valentine just shook his head continuing to eat his pasta.
“You’re too judgemental, Enrico. I know that this is blatantly the work of a Stand, but this is a nice Stand! At least give Trussardi a chance.”
Enrico sighed and looked down to his food,
That made Valentine smile as he continued to eat his pasta. However, Valentine began feeling stiff. He could barely move his arms, like his joints were locked in place. That’s when they both heard the crack of his shoulder blades, as Valentine’s joints relocated themselves and moved inside his body, before immediately snapping into place. Valentine let out a slight yelp from the pain, but it quickly subsided as he moved his arms again.
“M-My shoulders! They’re less stiff now!”
He looked to Enrico, who’s expression was one of disgust as he got up from his seat and started storming towards the back of the restaurant and towards the chef’s kitchen. Valentine immediately got up from his seat too, seeing how surprisingly ticked off he looked.
“P-Pucci! Where are you going? I’m fine, see? See?? Hey!”
Enrico ignored Valentine, mumbling a few things to himself angrily. He burst into the kitchen without any sense of morals, spotting the chef in the middle of cooking something. He looked just as confused as the Valentine behind Enrico. However, the enraged priest didn’t care at this point as he gripped at Tonio’s collar and shook him.
“What’s with you Stand users always trying to mess with us, huh?! I’m getting sick of it! I can’t catch a break anymore even in this new universe!! I’m getting utterly tired of this bullshit ! I’m this close to done with being a man of Go-”
Enrico was cut off by the confused Tonio, as they both just sort of stared at each other for a moment.
“Stand user. I’m going to ignore the fact that you burst into my kitchen without washing your hands for the time being and ask you what a Stand user is.”
He let go of Tonio who stood up straight, and Enrico turned to look at Valentine who was even more confused. Confusion was being passed around from person to person today.
“Wait, so.. You have no idea what a Stand is?”
Enrico asked, and Tonio shook his head in response. Whitesnake manifested next to Enrico quickly as he pointed to it.
“Can you see this?”
Tonio nodded, looking fairly amazed at the humanoid figure next to Enrico.
“Is that what a Stand is? Does that mean.. You two can see my Pearl Jam ?”
Tonio questioned as a little group of red, tomato looking Stands with arms appeared around him, all making little noises. Valentine immediately chimed in, showing off D4C .
“So that’s what they’re called? Stands? I never knew! I just know that almost a year ago I woke up with this little creatures and used my new power to make food that cured people’s ailments. I had no idea there were people just like me.”
Valentine bounced up and down happily.
“There’s more if you wanna meet them!”
“Okay, besides that, who exactly are you? And if you’re a nice Stand user, then why is your restaurant so empty?”
Enrico questioned the chef more, as he nodded a bit.
“I’ll introduce myself once and I’ll introduce myself again, my name is Antonio ‘Tonio’ Trussardi, and I’m a popular chef from Italy who moved here to the small town of Morioh to share my love of cooking and my food to people around the world. But.. My restaurant hasn’t gained much, ah.. Traction. And that’s because of a lot of things.”
Tonio sighed, as he pulled up a chair and sat down.
“Make yourselves comfortable, and listen closely.”
Enrico and Valentine shared a glance, as they both looked to Tonio who took a deep breath and began to speak again.
“When I first came to Morioh and set my restaurant up last year, business was booming. I was well known all around town, and tourists frequented here. I imbued my food with my Stand’s power which helped with ailments such as stress, anxiety, cavities, and much more. The only thing it couldn’t do was cure certain diseases, like cancer or something of the sort. I was happy to get so many customers and see how positively everyone was affected, until almost 6 months later people simply stopped coming. That’s when I found out that there was an unknown underground business on the rise, as well as a sudden drop in population, and these fruits called Rokkaka that began to pop up out of nowhere that people bought by the dozen. From what I know, Rokkaka’s are a special fruit that can cure absolutely anything. And when I say anything, I mean things as intense as death. But, when eating a Rokkaka , they come with a price. A thing called Equivalent Exchange . To help give you an idea of the Rokkaka’s capabilities, let me give an example.”
Tonio had his Stand Pearl Jam bring him an apple,
“Let’s say you’re an apple, and let’s say you lost a piece of yourself.”
Tonio grabbed a knife, and cut off a small bit of the apple.
“You lost a piece of yourself and you want it back. So, you eat a Rokkaka . The Rokkaka will give that piece of you back. However,”
Tonio placed the cut off a piece of the apple back to its rightful place, but instead cut out the core of the apple.
“In exchange, the Rokkaka will take something from you. That’s how Equivalent Exchange works. You gain something, and something else it taken away. If you have cancer, it will cure it but take your arm away, etcetera. I’ve seen an exchange happen right in front of me, and.. It’s disturbing to say the least.”
Pearl Jam took the apple and placed it elsewhere, as Tonio let out a sigh.
“To put it simply, the Rokkaka business is putting me out of my own business. Sooner or later, I’ll go bankrupt. I’ll lose my restaurant.”
Enrico had a fairly sympathetic look on his face, and Valentine looked outraged.
“What?! Some fruit that’s doing more harm than good is putting your amazing amazing food to shame?”
Tonio nodded in response.
“You could say that. But it’s so popular and nobody knows who runs it, so even if I truly wanted to do something about this I can’t. My downfall is inevitable.”
Tonio looked down, and Enrico approached him and kneeled down in front of him.
“Trussardi, you’re a passionate man. I respect what you do, and some probably overpriced fruit would never be able to match up with your food.”
Tonio’s eyes lit up,
“Y-You think so?”
Enrico nodded and put a hand on his shoulder.
“Absolutely, and Valentine can prove it. Trussardi, I promise we’ll do whatever it takes to help your business, no matter what.”
Tonio’s sad expression changed to one of hope and utter joy, as he jumped up and hugged Enrico, twirling around happily.
“Oh, thank you! Thank you so much! I’ll make sure you two get the best food I can offer! I couldn’t thank you two enough!”
Enrico got a little dizzy from the twirling hug, but nodded along. Valentine was surprised by Enrico’s willingness to help since he seemed so done with the idea of Stands and Stand users, but nodded along happily. After a few more sincere ‘thank you’s’ and words of kindness from Tonio, Enrico paid him greatly for his service and they both left, ready to make their way back to the apartment.
“Pucci, can I ask you something?”
Enrico looked at Valentine,
“..Why did you want to help Tonio? I thought you kinda sorta didn’t want to associate yourself with Stand stuff?”
Enrico thought for a moment, before smiling a little.
“I just felt a sense of injustice when I heard his story, and it made me realize some things.”
He turned to look at Valentine,
“Some things are inevitable. And I need to accept that.”
Whilst the duo were on their way back to the apartment, a man observed them from a distance, jealousy and intense envy tracing his face.
He clenched his fist,
“Those are the guys that beat on Tamami? They look stuck up, and that pisses me off.”
He smacked his wooden mannequin Stand in the chest.
“You listening, Surface? If we don’t get rid of these guys, Higashikata-san is gonna demote us and take away half our pay. Let’s make sure to take them out one by one. It’ll be easier than catcalling a hot chick on the street.”
Diego, Valentine, and Enrico regrouped and discussed their next plans in one of the apartment rooms they had rented out, while Doppio stayed in the second room they had, recovering from his wounds. Enrico had been pacing back in forth in the room, doing copious amounts of searching on his phone and blabbering about while Valentine and Diego sat on one of the beds.
“So, Pucci, you’re trying to tell us that we have to go out of our way to find out what the cause of this drop in population is along with taking down this harmful underground business that could probably wipe us off the face of the earth without a trace?”
Diego replied with a slight snark in his tone, not actually thinking Enrico would go out of his way to do this.
“You make it sound a lot worse than it actually is, but yes.”
“You wish to go through all of this just to help some Italian guy and his food?”
“More like help the town of Morioh in its entirety, but yes.”
“But… Why? Not even a few days ago, you wanted nothing to do with conflict like this. What’s with this change in attitude?”
Diego persisted, and Enrico was quiet for a moment.
“..There are certain things that could be considered inevitable. Things you are unable to avoid, no matter how hard you try to.”
Enrico stopped his pacing around the room,
“As Stand users, we are unable to avoid other Stand users. It’s a natural attraction, and we can’t avoid that. Nor can I avoid the past mistakes I’ve made to get to this point. After the journey me and Valentine had to Italy, meeting Doppio and his split personality, finding you, Diego.. There was just so much for me to process. But I’ve processed it now. And, now that I’ve processed it,”
He paused, grabbing a remote and turning on the T.V in the middle of the room, switching it to a news channel which was reporting on a new missing person case of a woman in her early 20’s by the name of Arisa Tokimeki.
“I’m ready to face the inevitable and actually start contributing something. I also believe we have our first clue to the drop in population.”
Valentine and Diego looked at each other for a moment, before Diego spoke up again.
“You’re an absolute nut, Pucci.”
“I know that all too well.”
“What do you suggest we do then?”
Enrico thought again, watching the news reporter continue talking about the odd abundance of missing person cases.
“Gain information about the missing people and this underground business. Diego, you and Doppio fought a man named Akira that said something about a business, right?”
Diego nodded in response,
“Yeah. I even got the guy to spill out a bit of information.”
“What’d he tell you?”
“It wasn’t too much, and he was fairly vague about it too. He told me he was recruited by this old guy who called himself Tom into an organization called Higashikata Co. The organization is all about making money and distributing these fruits called Rokkaka, and there’s branches to it too. The lowest branch of the company is people like Tamami and Akira himself, who either scam people out of their money or simply steal it right out of their own homes. The middle branch are the people dealing the Rokkaka fruit, and the highest branch is the big boss of the entire company, Higashikata himself. Nobody knows who this Higashikata really is, and once Akira mentioned him he changed the topic and went off about how he’ll never steal again and if I wanted his mixtape.”
Valentine finally spoke up,
“Well, even if we don’t know who he is, we have a name! Does that mean we you can use your phone to look up people with the name Higashikata, Pucci?”
Enrico nodded, and looked at his phone.
“I’m not sure if it will be that easy. Who knows how many people in the world have the name Higashikata, but I feel we have a good bit of information.”
He turned off the T.V and sighed a little,
“For now, I feel these abundance of missing people will be our biggest issue. Tomorrow, we’ll do more research on the missing people and devise a plan.”
Enrico moved to sit on his bed,
“Then we’ll search for this Tom that Akira told you about.”
Meanwhile in Doppio’s current room, he was having a fairly heated conversation with his Boss, also known as Diavolo. He was bandaged up slightly, still recovering from the shock caused by Akira. He was holding a lamp up to his ear, using it as a phone.
“Come on, Boss! Please! At the very least, can we stay for a week or two longer?”
“ Absolutely not . ”
“But why, Boss? We’ve already been staying with them for so long.. We can’t leave now!”
“ We can, and we will. I already had to reveal myself to them because of that damn raptor! ”
“Why are you still so concerned with your identity, Boss? It’s not like you’re in control all the time anymore.”
“ Doppio, I love you, you know this very well. But I have to go against your wishes, just this once. We can’t afford to stay here any longer. I can already sense that bastard Risotto is undoing all of my hard work. ”
“What’s with you and wanting to go back to Italy just to take back Passione ? We’re finally free for once! We don’t have to hide anymore! We can relax now and.. And we have friends.”
“ Those bumbling idiots aren’t our friends . We barely know them, and they practically kidnapped us and forced us to live with them! ”
“They’re MY friends, Boss!”
“ I’m sorry, my Doppio, but when we get a chance, we’re going back to Italy. ”
There was silence in the room for a good bit, before Doppio finally responded.
“ Excuse me? ”
“I don’t want to go back.”
“ My Doppio, I- “
“Stop doing that! I’m not going back, whether you try to sweet talk me into it or not! You’re… You’re selfish! You always ever thought about yourself, and only yourself. I see the way you treat others, and.. I won’t stand for it! I’m taking control, Boss!.. No, I’ll be Boss for a while. I’m the Boss! And as the Boss, I say we’re staying here, with our friends, for GOOD !”
Doppio furiously slammed the lamp onto the desk next to his bed, and, in his frustrated haze, threw a pillow across the room and flopped onto the bed. He let out a groan, face first into the bedsheets. He rolled over onto his back, staring at the ceiling.
“I’m sorry Diavolo, but.. I’m taking control for a while. I’m the Boss.”
He mumbled to himself, before closing his eyes and eventually falling asleep.
References in chapter:
Slow & Easy - Whitesnake
Arisa Ichigaya (BanG Dream Character)
Tokimeki Experience - Poppin' Party
Arisa Tokimeki isn't an actual character to be introduced. She's there because plot.
Chapter 40: Surface
Decided to make the Surface fight one whole chapter. I didn't feel it would be necessary to split it up into two chapters.
P.S, spot the duwang reference.
The next morning they all split up into groups of two, making sure to wear casual clothing so anyone who might be after them didn’t recognize them right off the bat. Doppio wore a loose, pink flannel and black leggings, his hair let down wearing a hat with the letter ‘D’ on it. Diego wore a snapback cap and a blue hoodie, his sleeves cuffed at his shoulders, tight jeans to go with it. Valentine’s hair was tied back in a ponytail, wearing nice blue glasses Enrico lent him and a white jacket, a beige shirt underneath it, wearing a tie and beige jeans along with it. Enrico was wearing a simple button up and a grey belt to keep his baggy jeans which were cuffed at the end up, and his priest collar on like always. Enrico and Diego went off one way, while Valentine and Doppio went another way. Both groups had a map of Morioh, marking off landmarks to make sure they didn’t get lost as they traveled farther into the town. In the meantime, Enrico and Diego had been walking around town, looking for any sort of clues as to what might be causing people to go missing and what types of people are missing. Sooner or later, they made their way into the deeper part of town. Less people were there, and it seemed quiet.
“Enrico, are you sure this place is safe?”
Diego looked to him, and saw him nod.
“We’re both Stand users, we’ll be fine. And besides, maybe we’ll find something about the missing people here. I mean, think about it Diego. If I were a missing person, where would I be?”
“Ten feet under?”
“..Besides dead, where else would a missing person be?”
“Do you see how quiet and isolated this part of town is?”
Diego examined the slightly abandoned part of Morioh for a moment, before trailing off away from Enrico.
“Diego, where are you going?”
“I saw something.”
Diego turned to look back at him,
That sent slight shivers up Enrico’s spine, putting both of them on edge as he followed Diego, the two of them ending up in what looked to be an alley, garbage trailing the walls.
“Christ, it reeks in here..”
Enrico complained, while Diego looked close to throwing up.
“Y-You’re telling me. My sense of smell is heightened, so it’s even worse.”
Diego hesitated for a moment, before digging around in the trash, recoiling in slight fear in what he found before calming down.
“..Okay, cool. False alarm. I thought I saw a dead body or something.”
He let out a deep breath, as Enrico approached the spot Diego was in.
“Well? What was it?”
“Some old looking wooden mannequin. I dunno who threw it out here or why, but I could care less. Mannequins freak me out anyway.”
Enrico watched Diego get up and start walking away, but he decided to inspect the mannequin closer. He kneeled down and looked at it for a moment, before touching it. The mannequin convulsed, and Enrico jumped back immediately. Diego took notice of his surprise. Enrico immediately got up to his feet, as the two watched the mannequin slowly stand up and change its shape, its joints snapping and moving around at random intervals as it shape shifted to look exactly like Enrico, the only difference being a bolt in its head. Enrico and Diego both backed up a little, knowing damn well this was a Stand. The mannequin didn’t speak at all, it instead raised its arm. That’s when Enrico raised his own arm as well. Diego looked at them both as he continued to back up,
“Enrico, what the Hell is going on here? What kind of freaky Stand is that?!”
Enrico examined the Stand for a moment, before very quickly realizing its ability.
“It’s like a voodoo doll! It turned into me and can control my every movement.. I-I can’t even move my legs!”
The Enrico mannequin clone curled its hand into a fist, as it immediately thrusted its elbow back, making the real Enrico elbow Diego in the chest hard. Diego had the wind knocked out of him, as he stumbled back slightly, attempting to stand upright again.
“I’m telling you, Diego! I can’t control my own body!”
Diego stumbled a little before regaining his composure, looking at the real Enrico and back at the mannequin that turned into him.
“Then I’ve got a simple way to take care of this..”
He growled out, hands turning into claws as he leaped forward and tackled the mannequin to the ground, reeling back to attack it.
Enrico yelped out in slight pain, as he was flat on his back just like the mannequin was.
“W-Whatever happens to the mannequin, happens t-to me as well!”
Diego turned to look at the mannequin, who wasn’t phased at all as it quickly punched Diego in the face, knocking him back again. He saw stars for a moment, before getting back on his feet.
“If whatever happens to the mannequin happens to you, and we can’t hit it…”
Diego turned and ran, grabbing Enrico as he tried to get away from the mannequin,
“Then we just need to find the user and beat the shit out of him!”
A boy hiding afar let out a small cackle, watching his Stand, Surface , chase after his targets.
“Oh, you sad sacks of shit. You think running away from my Stand will save you? My range may only go so far, but it’s far enough to where you’ll never find out who the user is. I can just lay back in the shadows, and watch you run like lab rats!”
He casually followed after them, not even bothering to break much of a sweat chasing them himself. His Stand could simply do all the dirty work for him. He watched as the dino guy and priest turned a corner and disappear, his Stand stopping in its tracks for a moment. He got furious seeing Surface stop for no reason as he ran towards his Stand.
“What the Hell did you stop for?! They were right there!”
His Stand thought for a moment,
“Well, you know, I thought about it.. Do we really need to chase after them?”
“YES! YES WE DO!! Do you understand how beneficial a PROMOTION would be for me right now?!”
“Selfish as always, Hazamada.”
“It’s called I'm trying to have a somewhat stable life by getting good pay! Now chase after them before they realize you stopped!”
The Stand was quiet for a moment, tapping its foot as it pondered over it.
“WHAT DO YOU MEAN ‘NO’?!”
“I mean I don’t want to chase after them! Until you start showing me a bit of respect, I’m not moving an inch.”
“I’m LITERALLY your USER !! I NEED YOU TO MOVE!”
The Stand shook its head, staying there like a pouty child.
“Nope. Maybe show me a bit of respect and I’ll do what you want.”
Hazamada furiously stomped his foot, stumbling over his words as he let out a frustrated yell and punched his Stand in the chest. He paused for a moment, before keeling over in pain.
“D-Damn! That.. That hurts!”
“You retard! I’m made of wood, stupid!”
His Stand spat at him, and Hazamada kicked it in the leg, before immediately recoiling in pain. The little fight Hazamada was having with his Stand was quickly cut off by someone clearing their throat.
“ Ahem .”
Hazamada and Surface looked over to see a pissed off raptor man and a priest with murderous intent in his eyes. Hazamada and his Stand looked at each other for a moment.
“..You’re on your own, buddy.”
Surface said, before it changed back into its original, lifeless, wooden mannequin state. Diego hit his fists together, and Hazamada gulped.
“H-Hey, guys! I was just kidding with you! I.. I wasn’t going to actually kill you or anything! You’ll forgive me, right?”
The two didn’t say anything, as they got closer. Hazamada gulped again,
Chapter 41: Atom Heart Father (Part 1)
“You know Diego, you didn’t have to be so.. Brutal with the kid.”
Enrico stated, as they both got settled down in their apartment.
“He got what was coming to him. You’re lucky I held myself back and didn’t kill him.”
Enrico sighed, turning on the T.V in the apartment, as a few commercials played before another news report. Diego took notice.
“You know, these news reports are becoming a pretty frequent thing for us.”
Diego snickered, laying back on the bed. Enrico watched the reporter talk about a missing child who went by Ken.
“Besides the abundance of cliche news reports, I don’t think we’ll ever be able to find out who or what is causing the disappearance of these people.”
Enrico put his head in one of his hands,
“Without solid enough clues, we’re completely lost.”
Diego stared up at the ceiling, lost in thought for a moment.
“Doppio and Valentine still haven’t come back. Maybe they found something-“
Before Diego could finish, Valentine and Doppio both burst into the room, holding stacks upon stacks of newspaper. There was a camera in one of Doppio’s hands.
“We found clues!”
Valentine blurted, as he threw the newspapers onto one of the beds.
“And I found a camera!”
Doppio added happily, throwing more newspapers down and the camera on top of the stack. They all gathered around the stack, looking down at the ridiculous amounts of newspapers. Enrico picked up the camera and observed it more closely.
“..How did you two get all of these newspapers?”
Valentine perked up,
“Well, I pulled a few versions of myself from other universes and sent them off to look for some around town! Me and Doppio figured that the newspapers record all of the past disappearances in Morioh, so why not gather as many as we could to try and find a pattern? Doppio, could you show them what I mean?”
Doppio nodded, and pulled out a few newspapers. Some dated back to as late as six months ago, others as early as a month ago. Doppio pointed to the oldest newspaper, it being dated back to May 4th.
”From the newspapers we found, the alleged first disappearance was on May 4th. But there’s a good chance that there were even more before it from how rapidly these missing person cases popped up.”
Doppio rummaged through some more newspapers, taking out three that had the dates May 23rd, June 1st, and June 16th underneath the headline.
“These were all disappearances recorded not even a few weeks after the first one. But, there’s a recurring theme to them all.”
Doppio laid out some more newspapers,
“Recognize how almost all the missing people are women in their early 20’s? Each woman also had some sort of bad history, whether it was running away from home or something more sinister. They all dressed kinda scantily too!”
Enrico scratched the back of his head,
“That means.. There’s an actual mind behind this all. It isn’t just some brainless monster, it’s someone who’s been skillfully doing this for God knows how long.”
“It’s safe to assume that’s the case. Someone is outright targeting these women, but who?”
Valentine chimed in,
They were all silent for a good bit, before the sound of a camera taking a photo was heard. They all looked around, and immediately looked to Enrico who was holding the camera the entire time. He raised a hand,
“I didn’t touch any of the buttons, honest.”
A picture began to develop, and Enrico grabbed it, shaking it as the picture finally became visible. Diego perked up,
“I don’t believe you! You’re the only one holding the camera, who else could’ve taken the photo?”
“I’m telling the truth! My fingers weren’t anywhere near-“
Enrico’s heart leaped out of his chest as he paused, spotting something in the photo. It was a little blurry, but it was a picture of Valentine and Doppio next to the stack of newspapers. It seemed normal at first, but a closer inspection showed a man sitting and staring at them menacingly, a knife in one hand.
The smell of miso wafted throughout the house, and birds could be heard chirping and fluttering about to signify the afternoon. He didn’t want to eat anything heavy for lunch considering he had dinner planned. He had everything planned, really. Everything was neat and organized for him.
“I hope you don’t mind miso again. I haven’t had much time to go shopping.”
He said, and no response came. He had prepared two small bowls of miso, with bits of tofu sprinkled in, making his way to his and his girlfriend's usual place to eat.
“My father’s been out for a little while now. I would be worried, but that old man’s practically lost his mind at this point, wouldn’t you agree?”
He set the bowls down, and sat. Silence was the only response he got, as birds chirped up small tunes for their lovers.
“You’re so quiet today.”
He said, picking up her hand from across the table.
“But I don’t mind. I like them quiet.”
He kissed the knuckle of her hand, as a dripping sound could be heard.
“Oh, you’re dripping again. Haven’t I told you about how unsanitary that is?”
Another drip in response.
“..I see. I suppose you have a point, maybe it is time we break up.”
He let out a disappointed sigh, leaning his head on his free hand.
“That’s a shame. I really enjoyed your company too, Arisa.”
He thought for a moment,
“That was your name, right? Tokimeki Arisa, if I remember correctly.”
He set her hand back down,
“I guess it doesn’t matter now, though. I’m sorry darling, but it looks like we’ll have to break up.”
And like that, with the click of his thumb, she was gone, and he began to eat his miso.
“I seems I’ll have to find someone else to eat the other bowl of miso with me.”
Chapter 42: Atom Heart Father (Part 2)
Enrico pointed to the back of the room,
“Valentine! Doppio! There’s someone right there!”
Everyone turned to look at where Enrico was pointing, but saw nothing. Doppio looked a little concerned.
“Enrico, are you alright? You uh.. You’re acting real strange.”
Enrico looked down at the picture, and the ghostly man had moved from his sitting position, now making his way to Doppio and Valentine. Enrico immediately acted on impulse, and ran towards the two. He tripped over his feet slightly, as he seemed to have run in an invisible wall and appear on the other side of the room. Valentine immediately perked up and tried to run over to Enrico, but was stopped by an invisible wall as well. Doppio gulped, as he backed up a little,
“I take it back! Y-You’re not acting strange, we’re being attacked by a Stand!”
“As if that wasn’t obvious enough?!”
Diego scoffed at him, banging on the invisible wall, it not budging one bit. Enrico looked down at the picture, the man in the photo appearing next to Valentine and Doppio. That’s when he began to speak,
“You all think you’re clever, right? You think you’ve all solved the puzzle, solved your little murder mystery.”
The man looked a little frustrated, as he pointed the knife at Enrico, staring directly at him through the photo.
“Well you’re all wrong ! You damn pieces of crap won’t lay a finger on my son, and I’ll make sure you all never lay your fingers anywhere ever again!”
The man slashed his knife into Valentine’s hand in the picture. Valentine let out a slight yelp of pain, gripping onto his hand that had just got cut off.
He stumbled over his words, as the man in the picture let out a cackle.
“Whatever I do in the picture effects you as well! I can do whatever I want in here, and none of you can do anything about it!”
Valentine tried to stay still on his feet, but eventually crumbled to his knees. Doppio stayed away from him, not saying a word, staying silent despite the panic and fear in his eyes. Diego continued to try and kick at the invisible wall, before Enrico turned to look at the camera.
“..You live inside a picture..”
Enrico mumbled to himself, making his way towards the camera and picking it up.
“Your Stand ability is a lot simpler than I had expected.”
The man in the picture looked confused, as Enrico faced the camera towards him and took a picture. As the new photograph developed, the man was now trapped inside a small little frame. He looked panicked,
“H-H-How did you-?!”
He stuttered, as Enrico began to fold the picture.
“Simple. If whatever you do in the picture effects the real world too, but only to such an extent. You were only able to effect that of what was taken in the photo, creating a barrier around that given area, specifically making what you could call a picture world.”
Enrico threw the camera to the ground, and stepped on it, slowly crushing it.
“I can also render your ability useless by destroying the camera you inhabit. I’ve dealt with a good handful of Stands by now, and it’s easy to identify their abilities. Especially ones as simple as this.”
He crushed the camera under his shoe, as he folded the picture in half, and then folded it again. The man’s yelling was muffled as the picture moved in his hand, the barrier around Valentine and Doppio disappearing.
“Christ Pucci, you barely even gave the guy a chance to do a witty monologue or something.”
Diego laughed a little, as Valentine was still bleeding out. He didn’t look as phased anymore now that their main threat was gone. Doppio, however, still looked panicked.
“A-Are we all just gonna ignore the fact that Valentine is missing a hand??”
Doppio pointed at Valentine, who just smiled and snapped his fingers.
“I was just about to fix that! Watch this.”
He headed over to one of the beds and grabbed a bedsheet, throwing it up into the air and disappearing underneath it. Doppio looked confused for a moment, as Valentine reammurged from underneath it, his severed hand back on its rightful place. Doppio sighed,
“Right.. You can just replace yourself with another you.”
Doppio shook his head, looking over to Enrico,
“Back to the main issue at hand, what are we gonna do with that picture guy?”
Enrico shook the picture around for a moment, as a few more muffled yells could be heard coming from it.
“He has the answers we need to this little ‘murder mystery’ of ours. It also seems he’s related to the man who’s causing all these disappearances.”
Enrico smiled a little,
“Just by him coming here, he made this a lot easier on us.”
Chapter 43: Pressure, Pushing Down On Me (Part 1)
“He just made this a lot harder on us.”
Enrico huffed, lying on his bed, as Diego tried to interrogate a moving picture.
“Who’s your son?! Who do you work for?! ANSWER ME GOD DAMMIT!”
The man in the photo persistently refused, attempting to struggle out of Diego’s grip.
“I’ll take my information to my grave!.. Er, second grave! I’ll never say anything that might out my son!”
“Then I’ll DIG YOUR SECOND GRAVE FOR YOU!”
Diego was about to rip the photograph in half before Valentine stopped him, letting out a sigh.
“It’s really no use trying to question him. For now, we’ll use what we can to try and find this supposed killer.”
Diego scoffed slightly, slamming the photo onto a nearby desk.
“What do you suggest we do then, Einstein? Dress one of us up like a whore to try and lure him out of hiding?”
“..That’s actually not too bad of an idea.”
Diego looked kind of dumbfounded as Valentine clasped his hands together,
“Yeah! This murderer only goes after young women, all of them looking either scantily clad or something of the sort. So, what better way to lure him into a corner than to dress one of us up as a young woman?”
Doppio perked up, thinking for a moment,
“Wait.. Which one of us is going to dress up then?”
Enrico, Diego, and Valentine all simultaneously turned to look at him. Doppio had an innocent and confused expression plastered on his face.
“What? Why are you all looking at me?”
Valentine cleared his throat,
“No reason. No reason at all.”
He stated, turning back around and looking at the desk Diego had put the photograph man on. He was silent for a moment.
“Diego, where did the photo man go?”
“You placed him on this desk, right?”
“So where is he?”
Diego turned to look at the empty desk, then turned to look at an open window.
He had just finished preparing a dinner for one, planning to go out for a nice walk afterwards and maybe even find a new girlfriend. Sometimes he missed the little company he had, but he learned to appreciate the silence and the calm atmosphere that always accompanied a man like himself. Oh, such a quiet and peaceful life it was for him. And he reveled in it. As he was about to sit down, he heard a window open. He knew who it was immediately.
“Dad, you’re home later than usual.”
A slightly crumpled looking photograph slipped in through the barely open window, fluttering its way in front of him. The man inside the photograph struggled a bit as he tried to uncrumple himself, before fully appearing in front of his son.
“Oh.. Oh my poor, poor Yoshikage.”
He practically whimpered. He felt pity for his son, who looked as if he didn’t have a single care in the world.
“Yoshikage, there are people trying to look for you. I did what I could to try and get them off your trail, but they bested me. Oh, I’m so sorry my boy..”
“Quiet down, please.”
He, Yoshikage, moved to set his plate down on his table and sit.
“If you want to help me then tell me, who exactly is trying to look for me?”
He didn’t seem phased at all, as his father looked down.
“I’m not sure who they are exactly, but I know their names. Pucci, Valentine, Diego, and Doppio. They’re planning to ambush you tonight, I heard their plans before I ran.”
His father wiped at his eyes,
“Oh.. My poor Yoshikage. My sweet, sweet boy..”
Yoshikage was quiet, simply eating his food.
“My boy, what will we do now? If we ignore this and keep them alive, they might find out where you live-“
“ Dad .”
Yoshikage spoke up in a more stern tone, cutting him off. Though, his voice immediately went back to its usual cool and composed demeanor.
“You worry too much.”
He was quiet as he took in a bite of his dinner very casually, acting like it was any other night.
“Remember the reason why you stabbed me with that arrow?”
Silence. The sound of a fork against a plate was the only thing that could be heard throughout the house, along with his father’s labored breathing.
“..Y-Yes.. Yes I do remember.”
“Mind telling me what that reason was?”
“..To help you protect yourself against anyone trying to hurt you.”
Yoshikage got up from his seat, pushing his plate to the side.
“I’ll be going out early. Do you mind cleaning up after me?”
He asked his father, already about to leave without needing an answer.
“My walk may take longer than usual, but that’s because I’ll be dealing with these people that you mentioned properly.”
Yoshikage adjusted his tie, fiddling with his blond hair before opening the door and walking out.
Chapter 44: Pushing Down On You, No Man Ask For (Part 2)
“This is the absolute worst idea we could have possibly had.”
Doppio was walking down the street with Diego following next to him, both of them wearing fairly tacky outfits. Diego was wearing a black hoodie that said Thrasher , and his usual snap-back cap on his head, ripped jeans to go with his already fuckboy-ish outfit. Doppio was wearing the worst outfit of the two however. His hair was down, and it looked a little messy. He wore a black tank top and black ripped jean shorts, boots to go with it.
“Why did I have to dress up as a girl? I’m not that feminine, am I?”
Doppio turned to look at Diego, who just shrugged.
“I mean, I don’t know why you’re complaining. We’re only going with this plan once, and if it doesn’t work then we’re bailing and we don’t have to do it again.”
“We better not do this again! It’s embarrassing! I don’t even know if I’ll have the guts to fight in this thing..”
“We most likely won’t have to fight if we find this killer. Enrico and Valentine are watching us from afar, and we also have their phone numbers so we can call if we have to.”
Doppio sighed, as he kicked at the ground.
“Yeah, I guess… But you’re all repaying me for doing this!”
Enrico looked into the binoculars, watching Doppio and Diego intently. Valentine had a bit of a hard time seeing the duo far away in the dark like this, but he lightly bounced up and down in anticipation, attempting to look in the same direction Enrico was looking at.
“So? So? What do you see, Pucci?”
He handed the binoculars over to Valentine,
“So far I haven’t spotted anybody too out of the ordinary. What about you, Valentine? Maybe you have slightly better eyesight than me.”
“I’m not sure if I have better eyesight, despite me being only 9 years older than you.”
Valentine looked through the binoculars, scanning around for a moment before spotting someone. It was a blond man of average build, and he seemed to have been trailing far behind Doppio and Diego. Valentine still suspected something, however.
“Pucci, did you notice that guy over there?”
Valentine pointed at him,
“That blond guy.”
“What about him? He doesn’t seem too out of the ordinary to me.”
“..I’m gonna keep watching him.”
“Valentine, are you sure that’s the guy we might be after? He looks pretty normal to me.”
Valentine still kept on guard, watching the man intently as he casually walked down the sidewalk. Diego and Doppio didn’t seem to notice him at all. The blond man stopped in his tracks as he appeared to be looking at his watch, before turning around and staring directly at Valentine, despite him being so far away. Valentine’s blood ran cold, as he immediately grabbed Enrico and ducked behind something, bringing Enrico with him.
“Valentine! Warn me next time, I could’ve hurt myself.”
“He saw me.”
“That blond man. He saw me. He saw us. He knows we’re here.”
Enrico looked confused, putting a hand on Valentine’s shoulder.
“Are you sure he looked at you? Maybe you’re just overreacting. I highly doubt that guy is the-“
“ Look over here .”
Enrico was cut off, as both him and Valentine immediately began to look around.
“..Did you hear that?”
They were both quiet, listening for the voice again.
“ Look over here .”
The both of them turned to where the voice was, seeing something small approach them from the distance. Upon closer inspection, a small silhouette could be seen, slowly making its way towards them.
“ Look over here .”
A small pair of red eyes flashed in the darkness, a little tank like object on wheels rolling out from the shadows. Enrico blinked a few times,
“..Is that a roomba?”
“What’s a roomba? Is that some sort of Stand?”
“Wha-.. No Valentine, it’s-..”
Enrico shook his head, waving off the question.
“I’ll explain it to you later. For now, I’m pretty sure this thing is a Stand.”
Valentine tilted his head as they both watched the Stand slowly make its way towards them. He kind of giggled a little,
“Aw! It’s so cute and tiny! It’s got a lil’ face and everything!”
“Valentine, I wouldn’t dismiss it so quickl-“
“I’m gonna go pick it up.”
“Wait, no, Valentine-..“
Enrico was cut off by Valentine slightly shoving him out of the way and crouching down in front of the little Stand.
“Hey little guy! What’s your name? I’m-“
The small tank like Stand’s movements quickly sped up as its red eyes shone in the dark of the night, jumping up towards Valentine, digging itself into his gut. Without Enrico even having a chance to speak up, the Stand had already detonated and exploded. There was nothing left of Valentine’s body, only dust and smoke from where he once was, along with the small tank like Stand taking his place.
“ Look over here .”
Enrico immediately stood up and backed away from it, as a bush in the distance could be heard ruffling. A Valentine popped his head out from the bush as he got up and started wiping himself off.
“Jeez. What a rude little guy.”
Valentine huffed, standing next to Enrico and crossing his arms.
“Valentine, this isn’t a joke. You could’ve been killed for good if you weren’t quick enough! This Stand is a serious threat, we need to take it on with caution.”
Valentine thought for a moment, putting a hand on his chin.
“Hm.. Do you think this Stand has something to do with the blond guy that spotted us earlier?”
“It may come as a surprise, but it seems likely. This looks like an automatic Stand, so if we find the user we can take it out quicker.”
“..Automatic Stand? Those exist?”
The small tank Stand began to make its way towards the two again.
“ Look over here .”
They both backed off some more, attempting to keep their distance from it for the time being.
“Of course, Stands are universal so there’s bound to be one’s like this. Automatic Stands work on their own, but if you hit them it usually doesn’t affect the user. I’ve seen some in action myself.”
Valentine looked a little surprised, but intrigued.
“Really? Mind telling me about your Stand encounters sometime?”
Enrico scratched the back of his neck, a little flattered to see someone want to hear him talk about his own stories.
“Ah, only if you want to..-“
He immediately shook his head, snapping back into focus.
“No, we can talk about that later. First of all, we need to focus on this Stand. Despite it being an automatic one, all Stands have a range. So that means its user must still be nearby.”
“So, should we go after the user then?”
“No, not yet. First we need to deal with this Stand. Every user has only one Stand, so I’d think Doppio and Diego could handle themselves just fine if they encounter the user.”
Valentine nodded, reaching into his coat and pulling out an American flag.
“Then let’s deal with this Stand the American way.”
Chapter 45: Under Pressure That Burns a Building Down (Part 3)
Apologies for the slow updates. Planning on posting them maybe once a week or a few days in between!
Diego nudged Doppio, barely glancing behind himself, whispering to him.
“You see that guy too, right?”
Doppio perked up and was about to turn around before Diego grabbed his face and jolted it forward.
“Don’t look now! He’ll know that we know he’s there!”
“Who’s following us though?”
“I don’t know! I could barely see him in the dark. Even the streetlights aren’t helping too much.”
Doppio thought for a moment, before he gulped, immediately breaking out into a sweat.
“..Y-You don’t think that’s.. The.. Th-The..”
Diego squished Doppio’s cheeks,
“Don’t freak out! If you do, then he’ll definitely notice something's off.”
Doppio nodded a little, taking in a deep breath. Whenever he was scared or on the verge of panic, Diavolo would always tell him to breath in and count to five. He imagined Diavolo speaking to him right now. Breath in , he’d say, count to five and think about something that brings you joy and peace . Doppio immediately lost focus however, reaching up to smack himself in the noggin.
“Gah! No! Get out of my head!”
“What? What are you talking about?”
Doppio almost forgot Diego was there. He basically tuned him out.
“I-.. Uh, nothing.”
Doppio cleared his throat before continuing,
“What do you suggest we do with… The guy ?”
Doppio barely motioned behind himself, playing it off as him just shrugging. Diego was quiet for a moment, as he looked down to the pavement.
“..We corner him. The next alley we come by, we turn into. If he follows us in there, then we’ll know he’s up to no good and attack. He’ll be none the wiser, thinking we’re just some young couple ready to do some dumb shit.”
Doppio cringed a little at the last bit,
“Don’t even pretend we’re a couple. God, it makes me feel all weird and guilty..”
“Ah, sorry then.”
Diego scanned the darkness for a moment, before spotting an open alley. He motioned towards it, as the two of them quickly made their way there and hid behind a dumpster.
“You know, I always get a feeling something bad will happen in an alleyway. Especially a dark alleyway.”
Diego spoke up no louder than a whisper, as he peeked out for any signs of the man. Doppio nodded a little.
“Yeah.. I-I get the same feeling.”
They were both quiet for a good while, the only sounds to be heard were distant footsteps drawing closer and Doppio’s breathing growing heavier. The footsteps stopped near the entrance of the alley, everything going dead silent as Doppio quickly reached to cover his mouth. Another step could be heard, and Diego wasted no time before immediately lunging out from behind the dumpster, ready to pounce on the killer, bearing teeth and claws. He was caught off guard however by a quick knee to the stomach.
“ Killer Queen !”
A pink, ghostly hand gripped tightly onto Diego’s throat and pinned him to the wall of the alley. Diego struggled the fight out of the Stands grip, only being met with a tighter hold to his throat, making it hard for him to breathe. As Diego finally opened his eyes, he was met with a big, pink, cat-like Stand with big red eyes that shone through the darkness. Next to the Stand was the perpetrator. He couldn’t make out his features well in the dark, but he could see the cold, emotionless eyes and blonde hair well enough.
“There was another with you. Where is she ?”
Diego so badly wanted to laugh at that, but wasn’t able to as the Stands grip was relentless. Before Diego could even think of a response, Doppio stood up from behind the dumpster, curling his hands into fists and mustering up all his courage to summon King Crimson’s arms. The man turned to look over Doppio with his ice blue eyes which sent shivers up his spine.
“So you all really are Stand users? That’s entertaining.”
Diego continued to try and scratch at the pink, cat Stands arm, not being able to break free as he grew weaker from the loss of air. Doppio was attempting to refrain from hyperventilating, his panic fully settling in now.
“..L-Let.. Let go of him!”
Doppio stuttered out, trying so hard to sound confident. The man couldn’t help but let out a deep chuckle. Doppio took a step forward, but the man raised a hand.
“I suggest you not to take another step closer.”
Doppio paused, as the man changed his hand gesture into a thumbs up. Or, more like it appeared to be a gesture related to him ready to set off a bomb. The last thought worried Doppio, as his suspicions were soon confirmed.
“If you get any closer, I’ll have no choice but to kill him.”
The grip on Diego’s throat grew visibly tighter, as if the man’s Stand was about to snap it at any given second.
“I had heard you two and another duo would be after me, so I decided I’d be better off taking care of you all myself. Less stress on me. You understand, right?”
Doppio’s mouth was dry, a voice was calling out to him in the back of his head. Let me take control my Doppio , it whispered, I can take care of that heathen quickly . Doppio didn’t listen. He didn’t want to lose what little control he finally had now.
“Who a-are you?! Why are you doing.. This?”
Doppio could’ve sworn he saw the man crack a little smile, as he cleared his throat.
“My name is Kira Yoshikage, and I am 33 years old.”
This was already off to a weird start.
“My house is in the northeast section of Morioh, where all the villas are..”
This might take a while.
Chapter 46: Splits a Family In Two, Puts People on Streets (Part 4)
The little tank that was attacking Enrico and Valentine earlier was now chasing after them at practically mach speed. The duo were practically out of breath, but had to keep going, or else this killer roomba would blow them to pieces. Valentine had already sacrificed multiple of himself so they could get a better idea of what this Stand is capable of, and in the middle of sacrificing another Valentine, the Stand climbed up a street light and blew it up. That’s when they realized it followed heat. So, seeing as they couldn’t do anything, they decided to run for their lives and try to find the user of this thing.
“S-So much for trying to take it out the American way!”
“What? You have any better ideas?”
Enrico huffed, as they both turned a few sharp corners in the dark of the town.
“ Look over here .”
That Stand was still hot on their tail. Valentine, while still running, reached into his coat and pulled out an old pistol. Enrico stared at him, a little wide eyed as he turned to shoot at the Stand. The bullets didn’t do anything, as they bounced off it.
Valentine whispered to himself, turning back around and rummaging through his coat again.
“When I find this Stand user, I’m gonna..-“
He shook his head, letting out a huff. Enrico gulped, having an idea as to what Valentine might do.
“..I was told there were no issues at my last checkup.”
The man, Yoshikage Kira, looked proud of himself to give off that speech, like he had planned it and rehearsed it multiple times over. Doppio was dumbfounded, and Diego just looked plain bored.
“If you’re g-gonna lullaby us to sleep, at least make it somewhat entertai-“
Diego was cut off by Kira’s Stand harshening its grip around his throat, making him choke as he struggled again.
“What I’m trying to explain before you so rudely interrupted me, is that I’m a person who wishes to live a very quiet life..-“
“S-Say’s… The serial kille-“
Diego tried to act snarky again but was immediately cut off by Kira elbowing him in the stomach.
“..I wish to live a very quiet life. I take care not to trouble myself with enemies, like winning and losing, that would cause me to lose sleep at night. That’s how I deal with society, and I know that is what brings me happiness. Although,”
His expression turned into once full of confidence with very blatant murderous intent.
“If I were to fight I wouldn’t lose to anyo-“
“THIS IS IN THE NAME OF PATRIOTISM!”
Before Kira could even turn around, he was knocked out cold with the back of a pistol. Valentine had saved Diego and Doppio in the knick of time. Valentine panted heavily, with Enrico right beside him.
“..I thought you were gonna shoot him.”
“What? Oh dear God, Pucci, why would I shoot him? I’m patriotic but not to an extent where I shoot first and ask questions later.”
Diego fell to his knees as he coughed a little, gently grabbing at his own throat.
“Y-You.. You shoulda killed the bastard.. He looked like he was gonna do something really bad!”
Valentine kneeled down to check for the man's pulse.
“It’d be better to keep him alive for the time being. Maybe he might know a thing or two about the Rokkaka?”
Doppio gulped a little, shakily helping Diego up from the ground.
“Well, what are we gonna do with him?”
“We could send him to jail. He gave us an entire monologue about his life story, so we have enough information.”
Valentine lifted up Kira’s limp and unmoving body, slumping it over one of his shoulders.
“I wouldn’t send him to jail. He’s a Stand user, and he could probably bust out if he really wanted to considering he’s got two Stands.”
Valentine thought for a moment, and gulped.
“The best thing we can do is interrogate him and.. Keep an eye on him, I suppose.”
Diego, Doppio, and Enrico all looked at eachother. All of them were iffy about keeping this man alive. Hell, they were pretty sure it wouldn’t be the best idea to let him breath. But, they decided to go with it.. For the time being.
Everything was hazy, and he felt dazed. Was he knocked in the back of his head with something? His head hurt, and it was all dark when he finally opened his eyes. He tried to move, but he was sitting in a chair, his hands tied behind his back. He couldn’t move an inch. That’s when a blinding light flashed in his face, and he recoiled a little. His vision was blurry and he felt a migraine coming on.
“Hey, Diego, don’t shine the light like that in his face. You’ll hurt his eyes!”
A voice could be heard nearby.
“I could give less shits if I hurt his eyes! Maybe if he didn’t kill people for the Hell of it, I’d be a little nicer.”
They light grew harsher, as it just got shoved into his face more.
“Alright, Kira Yoshikage , tell us who you work for! What do you know about the Rokkaka? What’s your Stand’s abilities?”
A switch could be heard flicking on in the distance, as the entire room lit up.
“Well blinding the guy won’t get us answers.”
“Aw man, did you really have to ruin the moment? I wanted to interrogate him like in one of those movies you’ve shown us.”
Kira let out a groan, finally opening his eyes and staring at the perpetrators. Slowly, he remembered. These pests. These four pests that intruded on his quiet lifestyle. If he wasn’t so careless, he would have killed the four of them right then and there. He still couldn’t comprehend how two of them bypassed his Sheer Heart Attack , let alone how he didn’t hear someone approaching him from behind. Besides that, how dare they intrude on his lifestyle? How dare these rats tie him to a chair and interrogate him like some sort of criminal?
“Yoshikage Kira, was it?”
Kira looked up, spotting the priest in the room begin to talk.
“We know what you’ve been up to, but I can promise you that we won’t kill you. We just want answers, can we all agree on that?”
He looked around at the three others in the room, all of them with looks on their faces saying ‘we can’t keep any promises’. The man sighed and nodded,
“I’ll take the silence as a yes.. Hopefully. Ah, mister Kira-.. No, Kira-san, as the Japanese would say it. I’m-“
Diego let out a groan and rolled his eyes, as he named everyone off himself.
“That’s Enrico, that’s Valentine, I’m Diego, and that ‘girl’ is Doppio.”
Diego snickered, but Doppio didn’t find it so funny.
“Diego! That’s not funny!”
“What? You play a real convincing girl.”
“Pipe down you two, we have more important things to go over. Pointless bickering like this won’t get us anywhere. Now, Yoshikage, first things first. What is your reason for the countless number of disappearances in Morioh? What exactly did you do to those women and possibly men and children?”
The man tied to the chair was silent. Kira didn’t budge an inch, let alone move his mouth to speak. Valentine cleared his throat to break the silence,
“It appears he’s giving us the silent treatment.”
“No shit. What will you tell us next, that he’s wearing a tie, Captain Obvious?”
Diego snarikily replied, as him and Valentine shared slightly aggressive glares. Enrico broke their staring contest and rubbed his forehead.
“Guy’s, please.. Fighting won’t get us anywhere.”
Kira watched them all bark at each other back and forth, occasionally glancing over at the pink haired one, Doppio. At least someone seemed to be smart enough not to meddle with this utter nonsense. But, that isn’t saying much for this bunch of hooligans. He eventually grew tired of it before finally saying something,
“If I tell you all what I know, will you leave me be?”
Everyone grew a little silent as they turned to look at him. Enrico was quiet for a moment before nodding.
“Well, of course. All we want is information. If it sweetens the deal a little more, we weren’t even planning to tell the police about your wrongdoings either.”
Kira couldn’t help but let out a laugh,
“How do I know if I can trust you? I mean, all of you definitely don’t trust me enough to let me out of this chair. Perhaps I shouldn’t say a word. Maybe you all will turn me into the police.”
Diego looked up at Enrico, then at Kira, then back a Enrico.
“..Pucci, you’re seriously not gonna trust this guy, are you? We still don’t know what his Stand’s are entirely capable of.”
Enrico was hesitant, so Valentine decided to take the reigns and move to untie Kira from the chair.
“I trust him for now. Cooperation and communication is key, right guys?”
After a good bit of Kira having to spill everything he knew about some stupid organization and practically tell his life story, the four maniacs let him go. He opened his door and shut it quickly, slumping up against it and letting out a groan of relief. He was home. He was home again and now those weirdos wouldn’t bother him. He was free once more, and could continue his quiet life. They wouldn’t be able to stop him no matter how hard they tried. If anything, they made a mistake not throwing him in jail. Actually, the more Kira thought about it, they most likely couldn’t put him in jail. They wouldn’t even have solid evidence! He laughed a little to himself. His father hyped them up too much. Those four weren’t a threat at all, they were merely small annoyances in his life. He stood up straight, taking off his suit and undoing his tie. It was disgustingly late, almost midnight, and he had to work in the morning. So, he went through with his usual routine, and went to bed. He slept like a kitten that night.
His alarm sounded like it was louder than usual. Kira groaned and stood up from his futon, walking over to his alarm and shutting it off. He opened his closet, skimming through it sleepily before picking out a nice green button up and a brown tie. Along with his usual purple suit and pants. It wasn’t a very big change from his usual get up, which was fine with him. He had no reason to stand out and look flashy everyday. After getting dressed and slumping his purple suit over an arm, he opened the shoji to his room and made his way to the kitchen, beginning to make himself a pot of coffee.
A voice called to him, sitting down at a table nearby reading a newspaper.
Kira sleepily replied as he got his coffee ready before pausing. There was another person in the room, and it wasn’t his father. He immediately whipped around and backed away from where the voice was. No. There was no fucking way. It was that priest from the other day. Enrico Pucci.
“What-.. H-How did you..-?”
“You didn’t lock your door last night. We were able to waltz right in.”
The priest replied very bluntly, not even looking at Kira who was stunned.
Kira recoiled immediately and almost fell right on his ass. It was the blond curly haired man in the pink suit that seemed to be attached to Enrico by the hip the last time he saw him. How did he not hear him? The man seemed a little focused on the coffee maker more than Kira.
“Ooh! You have one of these coffee machines too? Me and Pucci have one back in America!.. Er, more like had, actually.”
Enrico spoke up again,
“Speaking of coffee machines, don’t touch that one Valentine. We both know what happened to mine.”
Kira still couldn’t believe it. These maniacs were in his house. He knew damn well there were two more as well.
“W-What the Hell are you doing in my house?!”
He should kill them. He could kill them. Now they were blatantly intruding on his life, and that was unacceptable. He wanted to kill them, choke them out, make sure they-
Kira’s train of thought was cut off by the priest speaking up again.
“Diego convinced me that we couldn’t trust you to be alone without supervision. So, what better way to make sure you’re not killing people than simply living with you flat out?”
Kira wanted to dig a hole, crawl in it, and bury himself. He wanted to kill them so badly, he wanted to dig his shoe into their smug faces and make them bleed out, he was beyond frustrated and enraged. But, he knew he shouldn’t kill them. Not now at least. If he killed them in his home, people would grow suspicious as to why only one person is leaving everyday. But he knew he shouldn’t keep them alive. They would hinder his lifestyle, put stress on him, make him unable to satisfy his needs and sedate his growing frustrations. He took a few deep breaths. Calm yourself, Kira. You just had to tolerate them for now. Tolerate them until you can’t. That was all. They’ll be gone from your life soon enough.
“..How long will you pests be here for?”
He asked, Enrico having to think about it for a moment while Valentine continued to look at the coffee maker, fiddling with it behind their backs.
“I’m not sure. Most likely until we settle the entire Rokkaka issue, but that might take us a long time. Unless you’d like to lend us a hand , then that might make things go by quicker.”
Enrico let out a snicker. Kira was quiet for a moment, before rubbing his forehead. He had a feeling that hands were gonna be a running gag with him. Besides that, he was desperate to do anything to get them out of his life.
“If it gets you rats out of my house quicker..”
He mumbled, not sure how to fully feel about this other than pure rage. As he turned to make himself some coffee finally and get on with his day the best he could, he almost slipped and fell, catching himself on the counter as he watched in horror as he looked to see what was happening, before a loud metal clang was heard. The floor was drenched in a mixture of hot water and not yet done coffee, while his coffee maker shot a few jolts of electricity out before completely dying. His coffee maker, ruined, on the floor. His poor, poor coffee maker. He looked up at the monster that caused this, Valentine, who raised his hands in the air with a nervous smile.
“I-I didn’t touch it! I swear! It just.. Uh, fell.”
This was going to be a long few days, he could feel it.
After Kira cleaned up the remains of the coffee maker (with Enrico attempting to help, mind you), and apologized to his boss a few times for being late, he was off to work finally. It felt like it had already been days since these creatures started living with him, yet it’s only been an hour or two. As he was on his way to work, he noticed that an unwelcome guest was following him. Kira knew this town like the back of his hand, so he took a few odd turns, attempting to lose whoever was spying on him. After taking another sharp turn around an odd corner he hid behind a wall for a moment, before sticking his foot out to trip whoever was after him, watching the perpetrator fall to the ground. He kneeled down and grabbed a chunk of his hair, before pulling up his face to meet the stalker eye to eye.
“Oh. It’s you.”
Kira’s voice was monotone, as he kneeled face to face with Diego. He let go of the back of his hair before standing up and wiping himself off.
“My name isn’t ‘You’, it’s Diego.”
“I know, but I just don’t care. Care to explain why you were following me?”
Diego shook his head a bit before standing up, watching Kira already beginning to walk away. Diego followed in pursuit.
“I don’t trust you,”
Diego growled slightly, annoyed that he was being interrupted.
“As I was saying, I don’t trust you. So I’m following you to make sure you don’t kill more people.”
Diego shook his head a little,
“Wait, why am I answering your questions? I should be interrogating you right now. Like, why’d you take so many weird twists and turns through town if you’re just going to work?”
“Because you were following me and I wanted to get you off of my tail. This isn’t even my usual route to work.”
“Sounds suspicious to me.”
“The only suspicious one here is you, the dinosaur that followed me for almost a few blocks-“
Kira was stopped by Diego who put a hand up to his chest, sniffing around for a moment before squinting around. Kira was confused by the sudden silence.
“..What? Are your raptor-senses tingling or somethi-“
More silence. Diego finally spoke, no louder than above a whisper.
“Do you hear that?”
Diego slowly turned to look at Kira.
“That’s the sound of you being a little bitch.”
Kira gave Diego a harsh glare before kicking him hard in the ankle, making Diego yelp out and grab onto it, bouncing around for a few moments. Kira immediately turned to walk off.
“That’s what you get, you filthy animal.”
“S-Son of a-!”
Diego’s hands turned into claws as he ran to pounce on Kira, knocking him to the ground as they both started to practically wrestle each other.
“ K-Killer Queen !”
Kira yelled out, summoning his cat-like Stand to help fend off the raptor attempting to claw at him. Their brawl was soon cut short by a voice nearby, however.
“You hear it too, right? I think the voices are coming from over here.”
Diego and Kira both froze up. They looked at each other for a moment before scrambling off the ground and hiding behind a nearby bush in a hurry. They both perked up to look at who might’ve heard them fighting, spotting two young, very oddly dressed men appear from another path. Kira nudged Diego and whispered,
“Those guys are more weirdly dressed than you.”
Diego nudged Kira back, as they both went back to observing the two men.
“What? But.. I could’ve sworn I heard somethin’. You heard it too, right Yotsuyu?”
The longer haired man, Yotsuyu, in his brown and green spiky outfit shrugged a little. He was holding what appeared to be a potted plant. A very odd looking potted plant.
“Maybe you’re just being paranoid. This is one of the most isolated parts of town, what reason would someone have to be out here?”
The other man with Yotsuyu scratched the back of his neck, looking around for a moment.
“Guess you must be right. Anyway, where’s this customer? He said he’d be here right around this time.”
The two looked around for a moment, before another pair of footsteps could be heard from afar.
“Suppose I spoke too soon.”
The currently unnamed man of the duo spoke again, walking up to a young boy, looking no older than 18, 20 at the oldest. He held crutches, one of his legs missing.
“You’re Daisuku Leppard, right?”
The boy nodded, looking a little nervous.
“Here for the Rokkaka?”
He nodded again. Yotsuyu stepped forward and took a Rokkaka fruit from one of the potted plants branches, handing it to the unnamed man. He looked at the young boy on crutches,
“I hope you know that there’s repercussions from eating a Rokkaka. You’ll never be the same again after this.”
The boy looked hesitant, but he nodded. He looked desperate as he used a free hand to reach into his pocket and pull out a huge wad of Yen. The transaction was quick and silent, the two men walking off as the young boy began to walk off too, taking a bite out of the odd fruit. Diego could barely believe what he saw, and Kira was just confused. They waited until they all left before finally stepping out of the bushes.
“What was that all about?”
Kira was the first to speak up, dusting himself off.
“They were dealing the Rokkaka fruit. We just witnessed a most likely highly illegal deal.”
“..Looked like some weird, overly expensive fruit to me.”
“That ‘weird, overly expensive fruit’ is the thing we’ve been looking for practically ever since we got here. We just got a lead on these guys, and we have a name too. Yotsuyu.”
Kira looked at Diego and raised an eyebrow,
“..I don’t have a say in this situation, do I?”
“You never had a say in the first place, handy man.”
“I barely know you Diego, but I already wish to punch your face in.”
Diego scoffed and tightly grabbed Kira’s wrist as he turned to follow the two young men they witnessed earlier.
“Cool. Anyway, we’re following those two guys whether you like it or not.
“I have work.”
“Then call in sick, you absolute knob-head.”
Daisuku Leppard is a reference to Def Leppard. He's also another unimportant character there for plot!
Also, JoJolion (Part 8) Villains will be the main focus of this new arc, so there will be spoilers for people who haven't read it yet.
Chapter 48: A Rocky Encounter
After Kira was forced to call in sick from work, him and Diego followed in pursuit of the Rokkaka dealers, determined to gain answers. At first they thought they had lost them, but soon enough caught up with the long haired one, Yotsuyu. He wasn't holding the potted Rokkaka plant anymore, and was alone. Kira and Diego both got a little suspicious.
“Kira, you’re the most normal looking. Talk to him.”
“What a great idea. Let me just tell him how we’re planning to take down the company he’s a part of too.”
“Fine, it’s a bad idea, I get it.”
The two looked forward and saw Yotsuyu stop in place. They both silently panicked and quickly acted natural and pretended they weren’t following him in the first place. The man reached into a pocket and took out a phone, tapping the screen a few times before putting it up to his ear. Kira and Diego were a little far away and couldn’t properly hear what he was saying, but they were able to hear small snippets of his conversation.
“..They’re here… Diego and another man… Notify the others…”
Kira and Diego looked at each other for a moment, before attempting to casually look at Yotsuyu, still trying not to get caught. However, it appeared they failed as the man turned to give them a glance before walking off. Diego noticed this and decided to stop pretending and chase after him finally, Kira attempting to stop him.
“Diego, wait! We don’t know if he has a Stand or what it’s capable of!”
Diego didn’t listen, hands turning into claws as he leaped at Yotsuyu, ready to tackle him to the ground. Before he could, Yotsuyu raised a fist and punched him in the face, knocking Diego flat on his back.
“G-Gaah.. What.. The Hell?”
He groaned, reaching up to wipe at his now bloodied nose.
Diego tried to speak up, before Yotsuyu moved out of the way slightly, and a potted plant started to rapidly make its way towards Diego and knocked him in the face, the pot shattering to pieces in the process. Surprisingly enough Diego was still conscious, but was absolutely confused as to how that potted plant flew at him. The broken pieces of the potted plant began to come towards Diego again however, slowly digging into his skin.
“Diego Brando, thank you for making your demise easier on me, jumping right into the action without a second thought.”
Yotsuyu spoke, turning his attention to Kira.
“You. You’re a new face. From what I know, you aren’t in any of our records. Peculiar..”
Kira really wanted to turn around and run from this situation. He really didn’t have any place in it, so why should he bother to help Diego? Why not let him fight this Stand user on his own? But, Kira didn’t move from where he was standing. He stood his ground, even taking out Killer Queen . He didn’t know why he felt like helping Diego. He wasn’t sure why he did a lot of the things he did. But, one thing he knew for sure was that he wasn’t about to have some fancy fruit ruin his peaceful town of Morioh, or some guy in tacky clothing. Kira slipped his hand in one of his pockets.
“You’re a Stand user as well? That’s even more of a shock.”
Yotsuyu left himself wide open, preparing for Kira to try and take him down the same way Diego tried to do.
“Now that you’ve shown me your Stand, come attack me. If it’s a fight you want, I’ll happily oblige.”
Kira took out a small yen coin from his pocket, handing it to his Stand.
Killer Queen took the yen coin into its hand,
“Who said I’d fight you?”
Killer Queen flicked the coin at Yotsuyu, and, with the click of its thumb, exploded in his face. Kira took this chance to grab Diego and run in the opposite direction, turning down an odd corner. Yotsuyu’s face was covered by smoke and ash from the explosion, before the grey cloud cleared up. His face was entirely turned into stone, but gradually changed back to its usual skin like texture. He watched the two disappear from his sight, before reaching into his pocket for his phone, taking it out and calling someone.
“Aisho.. Yes, this is Yotsuyu Yagiyama. Warn the others about a fifth member of the enemy’s group. I’ll get Damo to gain more info about him in the meantime.”
“Ow! Shit, be careful.”
Diego yelped, as Valentine attempted to pull out shards that dug into his skin from the potted plant that had hit him. Kira was in his living room, pacing back and forth as Enrico processed the information he was given.
“So, you two both witnessed a Rokkaka deal, correct?”
Kira groaned out,
“For the fiftieth time, YES.”
Diego scratched at the bandage on his nose, looking over at the extremely stressed and panicked Yoshikage Kira.
“Christ, calm down. We’ve dealt with worse, this really isn’t all that bad.”
Kira whipped his head to glare at Diego.
“No. No . Not we , YOU have all dealt with worse, I haven’t. I haven’t met another Stand user in my damn life up until you all decided to waltz into it. I-..”
Kira put his head in his hands as he let out a sigh. Enrico walked over to lay a hand on his shoulder.
“Look, I know this is probably a real big change for a guy like yourself. I felt the same way after mine and Valentine’s trip to Italy.”
Kira just looked at Enrico and swiped his hand off of his shoulder.
“I don’t need your sympathy, I just need you all to stay away from me.”
He walked off and towards his bedroom in a slight hurry. Enrico was just a little hurt, but didn’t expect Kira to like any of them right away considering they barged into his house and forced themselves to live there. Valentine turned back to Diego to start trying to bandage him up.
“I feel kinda bad for Kira.”
“I don’t. He asked for it when he became a killer.”
Enrico sat down at a table, attempting to process what he was told about the Rokkaka deal and the man Diego and Kira had encountered.
“Anyway, do either of you know where Doppio is? I haven’t seen him since earlier today.”
Diego and Valentine perked up, looking at each other and shrugging. Valentine thought about it for a moment,
“Come to think of it, I haven’t seen Doppio leave his room except for coffee this morning.”
Diego brushed it off,
“I’m sure he’s fine. Kira probably traumatized the kid, so he’s attempting to mentally recover.”
He laughed a little, and they all decided to brush it off for the time being.
Chapter 49: Yoshikage Kira's No Good Very Bad Day (Part 1)
Meanwhile, Kira was trudging his way to his room. Well, his new relocated room after Diego decided to steal his original one. Kira slept in the guest room (that he wasn’t sure why he had since he never had guests before), Diego and Valentine slept in his room, while Enrico and Doppio slept in the living room. As he was about to hide himself in his new room, he heard something from another room. The chatter didn’t sound like it was in English or Japanese. Was it.. Italian? Kira usually was never one to eavesdrop, but since these maniacs barged into his life, why not barge into theirs just a little? He followed the talking to Diego and Valentine’s room.
“..It’ll only be for a short while, my Doppio. I can’t promise you that I won’t hurt them.. Oh, fine. I’ll try not to start anything with some of them.”
Kira listened in on the conversation. He couldn’t understand what was being said since it was in a language he didn’t speak, but he could make out ‘Doppio’. Was Doppio having a phone call with someone? No, that definitely wasn’t his voice. Last time he heard it, it was a little squeaky and even childlike. This voice, however, was different. It was gruff and deep, threatening as well. Kira couldn’t help but peek into the room to see if it was even Doppio anymore. And, to his surprise, it wasn’t. It was an actual man , and not the pipsqueak that is Doppio. Pink and long spotted hair trailed down the top of his back as he adjusted a tie and held a coffee mug to his ear. He was also really tall. Definitely taller than Doppio. He was wearing a suit too, why? Guess he thought it looked flashy. Kira couldn’t blame him, suits were great. Besides that, who the Hell was this guy? How did he get into his house? Kira definitely didn’t invite him in, so he assumed Doppio did. Oh, did he have a few choice words for Doppio when he saw him again. But for the time being, he’ll have his choice words with this man invading his home. He made himself known by making a loud ‘ahem’,
“Excuse me, who told you it was okay to barge into my home uninvited?”
The pink haired man barely turned to look at Kira, but he could clearly see the guy’s green and soul piercing eyes. Could people even have eyes so bright green and unnatural? The entire man’s demeanor put him off, if he had to be honest. Either way, Kira stood his ground. The pink haired man stared at him for a little longer before saying something Italian into the coffee mug.
“I’ll call you back.”
The man placed the coffee mug down onto a nearby desk, and Kira was gradually growing annoyed.
“I asked you something. What? Do you not speak English? Must I speak in Japanese for you? Or, perhaps, you’re just deaf in both ears.”
Kira crossed his arms as he finally stepped into the room, prepared for some more extreme confrontation if need be. Kira hadn’t even known these people for a day, yet he was already on the brink of snapping. Before he could even speak up again, he blinked. At least, he thought he blinked, before seeing the pink haired man disappear. No, he didn’t disappear. Kira took no time to immediately turn around,
“ Killer Queen -!”
He could barely finish what he was saying, before blocking whatever attack was trying to hit him. For fuck’s sake, the guy was a Stand user. This day couldn’t have possibly gotten any worse. The Stand in front of him was struggling to try and use its arm to slash through Killer Queen’s defense. However, from what Kira could see, both of they’re Stands seemed to have been equally as strong. Killer Queen eventually was able to push the attacker back, knocking giving Kira a bit of distance between them. Kira felt a sharp pain in one of his arms, before looking at it to see blood soaking through his shirt. This guy was definitely a lot stronger than he had suspected. The pink haired man scoffed. He looked just as annoyed as Kira.
“I remember you now. You’re the man that scared my Doppio.”
Kira raised an eyebrow. He definitely didn’t remember seeing this guy with Doppio at all, let alone anywhere. Who was this pink haired guy?
“I don’t tolerate degenerates like yourself. Especially degenerates who threaten my Doppio.”
Kira was still a little confused.
“..Who are you again? Because, I don’t recall your face at all.”
The man didn’t care to answer him, immediately rushing towards Kira and attempting to slash at him again with his Stand. Kira used Killer Queen to try and block certain hits, attempting to hit the guy back a few times. When he dodged one of the enemy Stand’s punches, he was immediately kneed in the stomach and then punched snare in the face, knocking him down, flat on his back. He rubbed his cheek a little, attempting to get up before he was stomped in the chest with the guy’s shoe, his heel digging into his ribs.
“You should feel honored being killed by the likes of me, not many people get to see my face before they die.”
The pink haired man’s Stand raised its arm up, reading to strike down. Well, this was it. Yoshikage Kira was finally going to meet his demise. If anything, he was pretty okay with this. I mean, at least he got to die before he lived another day with Valentine, Diego, and Enrico. Sayonara, creatures. Kira won’t miss any of you, let alone miss himself. He would die a satisfied man.
“ Arrivederci .”
The man growled, before Kira shut his eyes and winced, ready for an impact of sorts. However, before Kira could say any prayers for himself and recite his will in his head, a voice was heard in the distance.
Kira looked up a little bit to see who was there, and to his surprise it was Diego. Why would he be here though? To save him? He doubted it.
“Are you really gonna go ahead and try to kill Kira without me?! For SHAME!”
Yeah, Kira figured as much. Before Diego could do anything else, Enrico and Valentine both made their way into the room. The pink haired man seemed frustrated, but reluctantly took his foot off of Kira’s chest and stepped back. Enrico kind of stuttered a little, not expecting this to be a sight to see today.
“I-.. Diavolo, I didn’t think-“
“Didn’t think you’d see me again? You really thought I’d sit back and let Doppio take all the control?”
Diavolo finished the sentence for Enrico, adjusting his tie and huffing. Valentine moved to help Kira off the ground, Kira gesturing him to leave him be. Enrico still seemed a little surprised,
“I thought you would’ve wanted to stay hidden? At least, that’s what Doppio told me.”
“Well, Doppio lied. I suggested we go back to Italy, but he decided to be stubborn and take complete control over our body. As his punishment, I’m keeping control and going back to Italy as soon as I possibly can.”
Kira wiped himself off and leaned in near Valentine,
“What they Hell are they talking about?”
Valentine shrugged a little.
“I’m not sure. Even I wasn’t told about this stuff.”
Enrico finally spoke up again,
“Diavolo, you can’t go back to Italy.”
“I can and I will.”
“No. I mean, you seriously can’t . If you do, you’ll be killed on the spot.”
Diavolo looked back at Enrico and seemed confused.
“..What are you talking about?”
“You think I’ve forgotten about Passione and Risotto Nero? He specifically told us to make sure you never come to Italy again, or he’d kill you.”
Diavolo was quiet for a moment, as he processed this newfound information.
“..He banned me from Italy?”
“I mean, he’s now the leader of one of the strongest organizations in Italy, so, yeah. He can and he did.”
Diavolo opened his mouth to say something, but closed it. He repeated this motion a few times, trying to say something, but being unable to and just looking like a fish out of water. He just waved them off and walked out of the room, looking like he was slightly in shock. Kira was confused out of his mind, having no idea what had just happened. He felt a headache coming on.
“I think I need a drink, or multiple.”
Chapter 50: Yoshikage Kira's No Good Very Bad Day (Part 2)
The entire house was filled with tension. Diavolo and Kira were now mortal enemies, everyone was stressed and confused, everything was wrong. Kira decided he needed to get out of his house, getting a bit more tidied up and ready to leave. Once he opened the door, a little someone was alerted.
“Where are you going?”
Kira turned to see Valentine, peeking out from the living room. He didn’t seem put off at all from what happened today. If anything, he beamed with naiveity and childish joy. Kira wanted to barf because of it.
Kira replied very vaguely, ready to walk out the door without another word.
Valentine persisted. Just like a child asking too many questions.
“Out side .”
“ Anywhere away from here .”
Kira hissed out before walking out the door, ready to slam it behind him before Valentine stopped him. They both met each other’s eyes, and Valentine smiled.
“Can I come with?”
Kira was quiet for a moment, before glaring at him.
Kira turned and walked off his front porch, and away from his house. Valentine (obviously) didn’t take the hint that Kira wanted to be alone and followed him. Kira turned to see the older man quickly making his way next to him.
“I told you not to come with me.”
“I know, but I wanted to come anyway.”
“Are you like this with everyone?”
“Only with people who deserve it.”
Kira took a deep breath and sighed. It was already close to getting dark out, and here was Kira, stuck with this 49 year old man child. He wished Diavolo killed him earlier. Valentine broke Kira’s train of thought before he could continue on thinking about his wishes of death.
“So, where are we going?”
“How should I know? I was just planning to stroll around town, until you decided to butt in.”
Valentine thought for a moment, thinking about where they could go before immediately bouncing up and down.
“Have you heard of the meteorite that landed nearby?”
Kira glanced at him,
“So the rumors are true?”
“Mhm! We should go check it out! Me and the others haven’t gotten the chance yet, so why not do it now?”
Kira thought about it for a moment.
“Yeah.. No. I’d rather not. With my luck these past two days, we’ll become some sort of radiation globs from that meteorites radiation or worse.”
Valentine pouted a little,
“Aww, come on! Please? We’ll go to check it out just for a minute and then we’ll go home! Ple~ease?”
Kira wasn’t sure how to feel about a grown man begging for him to see a meteorite like a kid in a candy store begging for some candy. God, it was almost surreal to him. Valentine slumped his arms around Kira and leaned up against him, putting all of his weight on Kira.
“Plee~ease, Kira! Just this once!”
Kira attempted to push Valentine off of him,
“Get off of me! Christ, FINE! We’ll go see your stupid meteor.”
Valentine immediately got off of Kira and bounced up and down happily, grabbing his wrist and dragging him along.
“Thank you!! Now, I’ve already memorized the routes of town, having looked over each sidewalk and road. But, just in case..”
Valentine reached into his coat and pulled out a map of Morioh.
“I have a trusty map that I totally didn’t steal from myself in a different dimension! Now I just have to remember where the meteorite was..”
Kira groaned. This was definitely going to be a long night.
Kira and Valentine were both on the outskirts of town, having left the borders of Morioh and walking down the path of the seemingly never ending fields. Kira genuinely felt paranoid being so far out of town. It wasn’t like him to leave Morioh at all because he never needed to. But, being so far out of town for the first time made him feel wide open and vulnerable. As if any moment he could be struck down by something. He gulped as he looked around the almost infinite fields of emptiness.
“Are you sure the crash site is so far out of town? This.. Doesn’t feel safe.”
Valentine waved Kira off, as they continued to get further and further away from home.
“Yep! The man on the television thing when I first saw the news said it was somewhere near Morioh. So, it must be out here!”
“But, what if it isn’t here?”
“Then we try to other side of town. If it still isn’t there, then we go home. Simple!”
Kira shook his head. Easier said than done, he thought to himself. Valentine looked down at the map of Morioh, realizing they were out of the map’s boundaries. He looked up, and spotted something bright in the distance. His eyes widened, as he grabbed one of Kira’s shoulders and shook him.
“Kira, do you see that?”
“Huh? See wha-“
Valentine used both hands to grab Kira’s cheeks and turn his face to look at the distant light. Valentine was absolutely ecstatic, while Kira felt the color drain from his face. Valentine took no time to grab Kira’s wrist and bolt towards the light, practically having to drag Kira. The closer they got, the more they realized what they were seeing. It was the meteorite crash site, but it was surrounded by government officials and things related to such. The crater itself was surrounded by an electric fence, while bright lights you would see at a baseball game surrounded the site. Two, pure black vans were parked nearby. Valentine and Kira both stopped in their tracks when they saw the site. Luckily, they were far enough away not to be spotted by anyone, but close enough to see most of the important details. Kira looked over at Valentine, whose eyes were filled with curiosity and determination. If there was any color left in his face, it was gone.
Valentine was still staring at the crash site.
“Valentine, listen to me. You are not going near that site. They’ll shoot you down without hesitation. Valentine, are you listening to me? You can’t be that brain dead, can you?”
Valentine waved Kira off and immediately began to make his way towards the site. He really can be that brain dead, Kira thought to himself. Valentine ducked behind one of the black vans, scouting around the area before looking back to Kira and giving him a thumbs up. Kira looked around, trying to say something, do something to stop Valentine from doing this highly illegal thing. But, he couldn’t, he just hesitantly followed Valentine behind the van.
“You’re fucking insane. Absolutely insane. Do you have any idea what you’re doing right now?”
Kira spat at Valentine in a harsh whisper.
“I know exactly what I’m doing. And what I’m doing is going to see the meteor.”
Valentine whispered back, but in a calmer tone. The man wasn’t phased at all. He didn’t care that he was breaking multiple laws right now, all he wanted to do was go and see a meteor. Maybe Valentine wasn’t phased because he had so many lives to spare? Maybe he just didn’t understand that this still wasn’t the 1890’s and that times were different? Or, maybe he just really was batshit insane? Nobody really knew the answer, but one thing people do know was that the man was determined. Once he set his mind to something, he did it. So, like the determined man he was, he reached into his coat and pulled out his trusty American flag. Kira was confused as to what he was doing, before watching him throw the flag over himself and disappearing underneath it. Kira blinked a few times before grabbing the flag and looking under it, seeing no Valentine. He peeked out from behind the van, still seeing no Valentine. He hesitated for a moment, before walking out into the open and scouting his surroundings. Where the Hell did he just go? He looked around for a moment before hearing Valentine’s voice from somewhere.
He perked up, looking over at the electric fence surrounding the crater. Valentine stared back at Kira from the other side of the fence.
“I made it in!”
Kira was dumbfounded.
“No time to explain, now help me get this thing out of here.”
Kira looked down at Valentine from outside the crater, watching him grab onto the oddly shaped meteorite.
“No. No, you’re not telling me we’re stealing it, are you?”
”We’re just borrowing it for a while! After I’m done showing the others I’ll bring it back.”
Valentine was treating stealing this priceless, very important meteorite like it was some sort of toy. Kira couldn’t believe this. This was insane.
“You.. I-.. Oh my God..”
Before Kira could even comprehend how illegal this entire situation was, Valentine and the meteorite were gone from the crater, the only thing there being an American flag. He turned around to see Valentine pulling the meteorite from behind a van, holding another flag.
”Hey! Help me with this!”
Kira just looked at him, still unable to comprehend any of what was happening.
”We’re going to jail. We’re criminals. I can’t go to prison. I think I’m having a breakdown-“
”Oh lighten up, Kira! Now help me get this thing home.”
“This is insane. This is a fever dream, I’m gonna wake up any second now and be back to my normal everyday life..”
Valentine watched Kira mumble to himself and eventually grabbed him and slumped him over his shoulder.
”Looks like I’ll have to carry two rocks tonight.”
Chapter 51: Cars, But With a K
It had been a few hours, but Valentine and Kira still weren’t home. Enrico was already dreading the worst. He feared that the people working with the Rokkaka might’ve kidnapped them or worse. Maybe he was being paranoid, but he couldn’t help it. Diavolo and Diego on the other hand didn’t seem to care much. Diego looked pleased with the fact that Kira was gone for the time being, Diavolo even happier. Though, their happiness and Enrico’s fear didn’t last long when the sound of a door opening and closing could be heard, along with the noises of Valentine struggling to drag something across the floor. Enrico was the first to perk up and immediately make his way towards the sound.
“Valentine! Where have you and Kira been? It’s almost 11 PM!”
Enrico questioned, before pausing and looking at the strange rock Valentine was dragging about and the dazed Kira slumped over his shoulder.
“..What happened to Kira? Why are you carrying a.. What even is that?”
Valentine kept dragging the rock across the floor, and eventually into the living room where Diavolo and Diego were. They both seemed just as confused as Enrico.
Valentine huffed, eventually backing away from them rock and reaching into his coat, pulling out a handkerchief and wiping his brow.
“I present to you all a meteorite.”
Valentine smiled brightly, and everyone was surprised, a few didn’t really believe him. Kira eventually struggled off of Valentine’s shoulder and regained his consciousness after hours of mumbling nonsense to himself.
”I-I didn’t agree to bring this thing home! He just.. He just went ahead and took it! I don’t even know how he wasn’t caught dragging this thing here! I-.. He-..”
Kira failed to find the right words to describe his frustration and shock. Diavolo just laughed a little, finding this just a little too ridiculous.
“Heh, hold on.. You’re telling me that you, Valentine, an almost 50 year old man, carried this ‘meteor’ and fatass Kira-“
“All the way here in under a few hours without getting caught by special forces?”
Diavolo walked over to the so called meteorite and put his foot on it.
“If this really is a meteorite, then you’d think it might do some sorta weird alien shit, right? But, from what I can see, this is just some dumb rock.”
Diavolo kicked it. A few seconds after he kicked it though, it moved. Very slightly, but very visibly. Everyone jumped back, and Diego even hissed. Valentine was the only one brave (or stupid) enough to approach the meteor again, slightly poking at it with his index finger.
“V-Valentine! What are you doing? That thing could be dangerous!”
Enrico stated, still keeping far away from the meteor.
“Pucci, it’s alive though. Maybe it’s good or something..”
As Valentine turned to poke it again, it shook a little. Everyone recoiled except for Valentine, who grabbed onto the meteor and gently shook it.
“He’s definitely gonna get himself killed.”
Diego mumbled a little, which Diavolo nodded to and agreed with. Valentine stopped shaking it for a moment before a crack could be seen forming on it. Eventually, it started cracking some more, and the sound of cracks and chips of stone cold be heard. Valentine finally got the idea that maybe this thing could be dangerous and backed off. From the stone slowly emerged a person. An unnaturally buff man, to be exact. He seemed sluggish, but that didn’t deter from the fact that he was half naked and utterly ripped, along with the unnaturally long purple hair. Everyone had no idea what they expected from this meteor, but it definitely wasn’t this personification of a gay man’s wet dream. The man from the meteor didn’t ‘t move, except stand there slumped in place. Enrico decided to take it upon himself to try and say something. He cleared his throat, making the purple haired man tilt his head to look at where the noise came from. Intense violet eyes stared right through Enrico’s soul.
“..Er, hello. W-We’re, uh.. We come in.. Peace?”
The man in the middle of the room didn’t say a word. He tried to step forward, but almost tripped over bits of remnants of the meteor he emerged from. He looked confused, dazed, and possibly even scared. Nobody knew how to react to this, except for Valentine, who didn’t seem afraid of the man. He approached the meteor man and held a hand out.
“Hi mister alien! I’m Funny Valentine, that’s Enrico Pucci, over there is Diavolo and Diego, and right there is Yoshikage Kira. What’s your name?”
Diavolo and Diego both shared scared glances at each other, Kira was prepared for the sweet embrace of death, and Enrico couldn’t believe how Valentine was acting. The big meteor man stood a bit more upright, shakily reaching out his hand and gripping tightly onto Valentine’s. Maybe a little too tight. The big man furiously shook Valentine’s hand, definitely having no idea what it means. Despite Valentine’s hand probably being broken, he looked back at the others and gave a thumbs up.
“S-See guys? There’s nothing to worry about! He’s just.. A little i-intense.”
Diego looked over the guy,
“For an alien, he’s kinda underwhelming.”
Diavolo nodded along.
“Yeah. When I think of an alien, I think of those big black ones with the extra mouth in their mouth.”
Kira perked up,
“A Xenomorph . That’s what they’re called.”
Diavolo gave the small blonde a harsh glare.
“Nobody asked you, mister know-it-all.”
Kira huffed, but Enrico was quick to break the tension and change topic, focusing attention back onto the big alien in the middle of the living room.
“So anyway, big guy, what’s your name?”
Enrico asked, and was met with a blank and dazed stare. Those violet eyes unsettled him and for some reason reminded him of someone. Kira crossed his arms, and broke the odd silence.
“Well, considering that I already know how this situation will go since you’re all pushy assholes, adding on to the fact that i have no say in the situation itself, I’ll be naming him Cars.”
Nobody seemed to have gotten the reference except for Diavolo, who snickered and decided to fuck with him.
“Kars? Like, K-A-R-S?”
Diego interrupted and played along.
“Yeah! K-A-R-S, Kars! Good name, but it sounds like you’ll need to go back to school. Not the best spelling, I must say.”
“What the Hell are you all talking abou-“
Valentine interrupted Kira by butting into the conversation.
“Cars with a K it is! Oh, this will be great! I can get to show him everything I know, teach him how to use electronics..”
Valentine rambled on about the things he’d do with the new member of their group, Kars, while Diavolo and Diego decided to both chimed in, mostly wanting to get Kars to bend to their will and boss him around somehow for the laughs. Kira and Enrico stood on the sidelines, both equally unsure as to what they were really gonna do with this guy. Kira put his head in his hands and let out a groan,
“Sometimes I really wish that this was an acid dream, and that I’d wake from it any second now. But, no. Instead I’m forced to take care of multiple man children.”
Enrico turned to give him a look, and Kira glanced at him back.
“Okay, only 4 man children. You’re fine.. For the time being.”
“This right here is a chair, that over there is a coffee maker, this right here is..”
It was the next morning, and Valentine was dragging their newest friend Kars all around Kira’s house, showing him every single thing in eyesight. Nobody seemed to mind. It definitely kept him occupied at least. Kars still hadn’t said a word since the other night however, only giving slight nods or letting out noises in response. It seemed he definitely wasn’t very educated with anything, but at least he was able to get himself dressed and take off what little clothing he did have. Kars was wearing Diavolo’s clothing, even thought it was a little tight in places. Kars didn’t seem to mind. At least, he looked like he didn’t mind? He was fairly emotionless, so nobody could really tell what was going through the giant’s head. Kira didn’t care, though. If anything, he was glad this new intruder was a quiet one. Less annoyances for him, and it gave him an opportunity to slip out the door and on to work like usual. As he snuck to the door, the moment he opened it the noise caught Kars’s attention. While Valentine rambled on about something, Kars made his way over to Kira and tapped him on the shoulder, which startled the blonde and made him jump back, before realizing who it was.
“Oh. It’s you. What the Hell do you want?”
Kars looked out the door and right at the sky. Kira just stared at him and shrugged, finally walking out the door.
“Well, whatever it is you want I could care less about. You could murder an entire village and if it doesn’t affect me I wouldn’t care.”
As Kira walked off of his front porch, he heard the door to his house close behind him and heavy footsteps. He turned around to see Kars towering over him. He glared.
“..You’re not trying to follow me, are you?”
He questioned, only to get no answer. He slowly backed away from him, to which Kars immediately followed.
“Fuck’s sake.. You’re not coming with me to work, I hope you know that!”
Kars just gave him a blank stare, which Kira let out a groan in response to and continued walking. This was the worst. He would have people staring at them all the way to his workplace. People might think he’s.. Gay . I mean, Yoshikage Kira wasn’t gay. He wasn’t!.. Was he? No. No, he was totally straight. Absolutely, positively straight. Besides his sexual orientation and onto the main topic, at least Kars was quiet. He didn’t talk at all, let alone make a sound. It looked like he just wanted an excuse to go outside. Kira didn’t mind it, the less noise the better. As they walked, both in their own little worlds, a soccer ball came flying at Kira’s face. He was able to barely dodge it in the nick of time, it instead hitting a wall and bouncing onto the ground. He immediately assumed some dumb kids were playing soccer and weren’t paying attention, but looking over at who it was, he was met with two identical looking twins. He wasn’t sure how old they were, but they appeared to be perhaps in their early 20’s or late teens. Kira decided not to pay it any mind and lightly kicked the ball back in their direction, continuing on. Just kids being kids, he thought. The moment he started walking again, however, the ball was kicked directly at his arm, bouncing off his shoulder blade and on the ground. Now that was on purpose. He attempted to contain his anger, not wanting to make a scene. He kicked the ball back at them again, but harder. He let it slide for now. They were just kids, he tried to remind himself. Walking off again, the ball was kicked at him once more, making its way to his face. He wasn’t paying too much attention, and thought it would hit him in the face, until Kars quickly caught it with one arm. Kira forgot he was there for a good bit. Kars didn’t seem to understand what the soccer ball was, but knew it was definitely going to hurt Kira if it hit him. Kars and the two twins had a bit of a staring contest for a good while, while Kira sat there confused before a voice from nearby could be heard breaking the tension.
“Oh my, you two aren’t causing any trouble again, are you?”
All four of them turned to look at who was speaking, laying their eyes on a slightly short man, speaking quietly and even a little shakily in Japanese.
“It’s rude to kick your soccer ball at strangers, apologize to them.”
The man spoke to the twins, who looked at each other and then bowed in Kars and Kira’s direction.
“ Gomen’nasai .”
They said in unison, as Kars stood up right and dropped their soccer ball. Kira looked at the man that had saved them the conflict, while one of the twins came over to retrieve his ball.
“I’m very sorry about that. They always put up a fuss when people walk into their territory, you’re lucky I was nearby.”
Kira adjusted his tie, ready to go on with his day like usual, not bothering to question it.
“Apology accepted. We’ll both be on our way now, don’t mind us-“
“Oh, would you mind waiting a moment?”
Kira turned around to look at him, raising an eyebrow.
“Would you mind telling me your name? I feel like I’ve seen you somewhere before, but I’m not quite sure where or when.”
Kira didn’t think anything of it, assuming the man might have mistaken him for someone else or something of the sort.
“Kira Yoshikage. And, you are..?”
“Damo Tamaki. I’m very sorry for wasting your time, I must have been mistaken.”
“No, it’s just fine. I really have to get to work now, thank you for helping us out, Tamaki.”
Kira waved him off and started walking away, Kars following close behind. As they walked, Kars for the very first time said something.
Kira wasn’t too surprised as he looked at Kars.
“Yeah, that’s my name. Aren’t you a big, smart guy?”
“..Uh.. Yeah, you said that already.”
Kars poked him in the cheek,
“Will you cut that out?!”
“That’s just my name said differently! Hey, stop poking me!”
Tamaki Damo waved them both goodbye, and waited a few before they were entirely out of sight. He took out a phone, and his original nervous and kind demeanor was gone.
“Perfect. A. Phex Brothers, scout out the north side of Morioh and search for the home of Kira Yoshikage.”
The Brothers looked at him and nodded, one of them kicking the soccer ball up and balancing it on his head, while the other pulled down his left sleeve a bit to cover his hand as they walked off. Tamaki dialed a number into his phone and put it up to his ear,
“Aisho, your Stand, it’s capable of chasing others, if I’m not wrong?.. Perfect. Your target is Kira Yoshikage, don’t mind the big purple haired one however. He seems to be of low intellect... Your main target is heading towards the Kame Yu, his place of work.”
Chapter is named after the song Kick in the Eye by Bauhaus!
Chapter 53: Doobie Wah! (Part 1)
Kira was attempting to ignore any and all stares he got from bystanders. Why did Kars have to come with him? Why couldn’t he have just not been there at all? This was the worst. When he finally got to the front doors of his workplace, he didn’t hesitate to whip around and scold Kars a bit.
“ Kars ,”
He spoke in a stern tone, as if he were about to scold a child. Kars was looking elsewhere before calmly turning to meet his glare.
“Next time you feel like following someone, don’t make it me you follow!”
He scoffed, turning back around and adjusting his tie. He could care less if he was being an ass to any of his ‘guests’, they didn’t deserve his time. Before he could continue ranting in his head, he ended up bumping into someone, the both of them stumbling back a bit.
“Gah! O-Oh, gee.. Sorry ‘bout that sir.”
Kira dusted himself off and looked at the man who knocked into him. For some reason, he felt like he’s seen him before. He quickly shook off the thought though. Whoever this guy was, it didn’t matter to him.
“It’s fine. Just fine. Apologies.”
He quickly blurted out, before just trying to go on with his day. Kira didn’t see the man give him a certain look, as he walked off. Kars was still standing there, and as the man walked past him, they both gave each other quick glances, before Kars watched the man go on with his day. Kars just stared in the direction of the unknown man, before eventually going off to follow him.
Kira entered his workplace and slumped in relief. Finally, a place he recognized and could find some kind of comfort in. He changed his demeanor quickly back to his usual emotionless, blank, and calm self. Being an office worker really did suit Kira. It was quiet, calm, and blank. Much like himself. Once he finally got to his cubicle, he was quick to relax, taking this time to rethink all of his life decisions and how he had possibly made it to the point where he was living with a priest, a man child, a schizophrenic, an alien, and a dinosaur. His thoughts were soon interrupted by two female coworkers of his. Great .
”Kira-san! Where were you yesterday?”
One of the girls asked, tilting her head.
“You’re never one to call out of work, what happened to you?”
The other asked, looking a bit concerned. Kira never understood why the women at his workplace tried to start a conversation with him. He felt it was too much unnecessary attention on him. I mean, even he could admit that he wasn’t the most attractive man, let alone one worth a woman’s time. But, he amused them with his responses either way. Better to answer quick than to stay there rambling on about nothing for hours.
“I was just a little sick, that’s all. I’m better now, so..”
He attempted to derive their attention elsewhere, to no avail.
“Sick? That’s awful!”
The more concerned girl blurted out, still looking, well.. Concerned.
“I can see it really took a toll on you. I mean, your hair looks all grey!”
Kira wished he could’ve given the girl some sort of glare. His hair wasn’t grey! It couldn’t have been!..Was it?
“You know, Kira-san, you should go to that new Cinderella salon that opened up recently!”
“Ooh, he totally should! Going to that place makes you look twenty years younger than you actually are!”
The girls both giggled to themselves, as Kira just listened, realizing how badly he’s been suppressing his murderous tendencies. He hasn’t killed someone or gotten a new girlfriend in a while, and now he was unable to because of his new pesky roommates. He really wanted to wring someone’s neck right about now, but he didn’t show it. So he just nodded along.
“Ah.. Maybe I’ll go there one of these days then.”
He lied, just trying to get them off his back.
“We should totally go with you then! It’ll be a lot of fun!”
Kira could’ve sworn he felt his leg twitch a little in frustration.
“Well.. I’ll think about that offer.”
Think about it his ass. He knew damn well when they ask him again that he’d decline, he just had to keep up his polite and understanding demeanor. One of the girls perked up in surprise.
“Really? That’d be great! I think-“
Before the girl could continue, their boss came walking through and interrupted their conversation.
“Alright ladies, enough chatting up Kira, back to work everyone.”
Kira thanked the lord, and his boss. Before he could half-heartedly apologize to his boss, he realized something was different about him, besides him being the new boss of his workplace. That’s when it hit him. His boss’s name tag read ‘Leppard Daisuku’, and the man had a face mask over his mouth. Was this the same Daisuku Leppard that he saw getting a Rokkaka yesterday? No, it couldn’t have been. The guy he saw yesterday was on crutches, missing a leg. This man in front of him looked more proper, like he had his life together. Despite him speaking a little oddly he was normal in every way. This couldn’t have been the Daisuku Leppard from the other day.. Once Kira snapped out of his train of thought, Leppard was gone and the two women were already off chatting about something else. Kira turned back to his cubicle and sighed. He was probably going nuts. He was thinking way too into things. He shook it all off. It was nothing to worry about, he could care less. It wasn’t his problem… Until he overheard something from his two female coworkers.
“Geez! Has it gotten windier in here or something? Who opened a window?”
Kira couldn’t help but perk up at that. He shivered a bit. It really did get a little windy in here. Why would somebody need to open a window though? It was the middle of the Fall! He huffed, thinking the cold wind would pass. But it didn’t. Instead, out of the corner of his eye, he saw something blue. It was blue and small, but it was gradually growing bigger. No. No, no, no no no. There was no way. A Stand? Here? In his place of work? He was ready to burst with anger. He could feel his fingernails growing, curling his hands into fists and digging his nails into his palms. He took a deep breath, and then let it out. This Stand wasn’t his problem. It must’ve been here for someone else, right? He watched as it grew slowly in size, casually moving past his two female coworkers and heading in his direction. Scratch that, it was definitely here for him. He panicked. This was going to throw off his schedule even more so, ruining whatever chance of a promotion he thought he would get for the past two years. God, he could cry. Those pests. That Valentine, Enrico, Diego, Kars, Diavolo or Doppio or whatever he was called! He was going to have words with them. He was going to kick them out once and for all, out of his home, and out of his life, for good .. At least, right after he figured out how to get rid of this Stand. He stood up from his desk, before looking around the room. It seemed other coworkers had noticed the very odd amount of cold and the harsh breeze in the office. Nobody else could see the cause of it except for Kira, who was about to be rapidly chased by it in a moments notice. Kira attempted to casually walk away from his desk to lead the Stand elsewhere. It must’ve been an automatic, similar to his Sheer Heart Attack . As he walked, the Stand immediately followed, gradually speeding up in an attempt to catch him. Shit. He couldn’t start running in the office, that would grab people’s attention. But, he couldn’t just stand there and do nothing. Who knew what this Stand would do to him if it caught up to him? He did the next best thing, and began speed walking. Speed walking. Like walking, but speedier. He could feel the wind getting closer, notifying him that the Stand was drawing near. When he was so close to the door, so close to freedom and the exit, he was stopped by a male coworker.
“Hey, Yoshikage! You look in a rush. What’s up with you?”
Fuck. Shit. No. Why.
“I-.. I forgot something at home. I’m leaving to go get it right now.”
“Oh, alright. Well, before you go, could I ask you something?”
NO YOU CAN’T. PLEASE GO AWAY MY LIFE IS IN IMMEDIATE DANGER.
Kira wanted to cry. Curse him and doing everything in his power to keep up his demeanor to avoid suspicion and attention no matter what.
“Nice! So, I’ve got this stuff going on tomorrow, and..”
Kira tuned him out. He could feel the Stands wind get stronger. This was it, he was going to die right here and now by the hands of an automatic Stand. At least he lived a good 33 years. He held his breath, preparing for an impact and pain. It felt like time had stopped around him, everything was quiet, unmoving as he braced himself for nothing.
He snapped back into reality to face his confused coworker.
“So, will you do it for me or not?”
Kira blinked a few times, not realizing he was still holding his breath. He didn’t know what his coworker had asked him, but didn’t care.
“Sure. Yeah. I really need to get going now, I’ll talk to you later.”
He blurted out quickly before making his way to the door and leaving. Finally, he was out in the open, and hopefully away from the Stand. Where did it go anyway? While he was talking to his coworker it just sort of.. Disappeared. How odd. First thing was first though, he had to get home and confront the others about this. Kira had never been attacked by a Stand before he met those freaks, and now he’s involved in some kind of groundbreaking, life-threatening mission that could impact the entire town of Morioh and sooner or later the world! He let out a frustrated sigh, adjusting his tie and beginning his walk home.. Until he felt another cool breeze. He looked in front of him to see that automatic Stand again, slowly forming bigger and beginning its chase all over again. Kira didn’t hesitate to immediately start running past it. He could care less if he was grabbing people's attention, he was so done with everything. Maybe he should just let this Stand kill him already. Why? Kira asked himself, why me? Out of the billions of people on this planet, why did I have to be the one to go through such torment? He asked himself, what did I do to deserve such a fate?
Chapter 54: Doobie Wah! (Part 2)
Yoshikage Kira was born in a small, unknown town in Japan. He was raised without a mother, his father having had a divorce with her months after he was born. In his original town, Yoshikage was seen as an outcast and a problem child. The Kira family had a long history of mental illness and even a few superstitions to go with it for as long as anyone could remember. Yoshikage and his father, Yoshihiro, was no exception to this. Yoshihiro had a drinking problem, along with recorded incidents of depression and suicidal tendencies. Yoshikage, during his younger days, would have random fits of rage. Lashing out at others and constantly being aggressive towards everyone, eventually leading him to be sent to a school for problem children and diagnosed with bipolar at the age of 15. At the age of 16, not even a year after being diagnosed and starting medication for his illness, his father had died from a stroke due to his drinking. This forced Yoshikage to live with his mother, the woman who had left his father all those years ago.
Despite him only being 16, he felt ashamed to be related to his mother. She was worse than his father when it came to drinking, and almost constantly went out to parties only to bring home random men for one night stands. After some time had passed, Yoshikage had begun to realize where his anger was spawning from and why he had been so unhappy for so long. The untapped sexual desire he held, and the anger towards a mother that was never there for him. He had ended up discovering his hand fetish at 18 years old during an art class due to the Mona Lisa, and had committed his first murder by 19.
His first victim was his own mother. He had killed her in their own home, not shedding a single tear for her the entire time. Yoshikage, in that moment of adrenaline filled hatred, then came to a conclusion. Humans are animals. Animals with needs and desires and wants that were just natural instincts for each and every one. Yoshikage's natural instincts were his desire for hands and murder to satiate his constant growing anger. He didn't need medication, it didn't help him. All he needed was a way to express himself, it was natural selection anyhow. However, his natural desires were considered illegal by societal standards. He knew he couldn't stay in his original town because of this, so he fled to Morioh. An even smaller, lesser known town at the time. In Morioh, nobody knew who he was. He was a completely new person there, where he could get away with his crimes without ever getting caught. It made it even easier for him when the ghost of Yoshihiro followed him there and stabbed him with a mysterious arrow, giving him Killer Queen .
That was until he met them . The only people who had discovered his identity and true motives, breaking his killing streak and barging into his quiet life, leading him up to this point. He hated them, all of them. He could’ve killed them. He should’ve killed them. He would kill them. He will kill them . They were undeserving of his time, dragging him into this mess he had no part of and making him get chased down by some Stand. When he finds this user, he swore that he’ll give them a brutal and painful death. He’ll make sure that by the end of it they’re left in a pool of blood and tears.
Kars had been following this man for a few minutes now, having felt something off about him ever since he bumped into Kira earlier. Kars could tell that this man wasn’t human in the slightest. But, why? And how? What was it about this mortal creature that grabbed his attention? Even though Kars didn’t know where he was, who he himself was, or who the humans he lived with were, he was slowly beginning to understand his surroundings. He often got sidetracked when following the mysterious man, having gotten more focused on the nature around him. The birds flying through the sky, two squirrels chasing each other up a tree, a butterfly fluttering onto his finger. A butterfly. Such a minuscule, meaningless life form. But he was enthralled by it nonetheless. Looking up from the butterfly, he had realized he had traveled very far from his original location. Where had he traveled to? It looked familiar. He thought for a moment, before realizing that this was the same place those two twins were playing soccer. He wondered, where were they now? Where was that nice Tamaki man? He wasn't watching where he was walking and bumped into someone, looking down only to realize that it was the man he was originally following. He was on one of those phone devices, it appeared.
"Hey! Watch where you're going, bud."
The man spat out, before looking at Kars and going wide eyed for a second. Something was said on the other end of the phone before the man shook his head and waved Kars off.
"No it's nothing. It's that big purple haired guy, the one that can't really talk."
Kars leaned down to look at the man better.
"I can communicate just fine."
The guy sort of jumped back in surprise hearing Kars speak almost fluent Japanese. He even had that certain accent to add to it. He nervously laughed.
"O-Oh.. Cool, I guess. Hey, Tamaki-san, the guy can talk. Were we ever told that he spoke fluent Japanese?"
Kars perked up. Tamaki? Was he talking to the same Tamaki from earlier? Kars became curious as he leaned near this man.
"Damo Tamaki? I spoke to him earlier. Are you acquaintances?"
The guy sort of backed away from Kars,
"Uhh.. I think he's asking too many questions. You think he'll try to get involved? He's probably not a Stand user, right?"
Kars began to get suspicious of this person.
"Stand? What is a Stand?"
"Alright, scratch that. He's not a Stand user, we're good."
Kars tilted his head in confusion as he watched the man converse with what he assumed to be Tamaki.
"...Kira Yoshikage? What about him? What do you mean Yotsuyu just saw him heading this way? He couldn't possibly know I'm the user!"
Kars glared at the man a little. He was growing more and more suspicious by the second.
"Kira.. Yoshikage? You know Kira Yoshikage?"
The man waved Kars off, thinking he was probably just blabbering stupid nonsense.
"Whatever. Even if that Yoshikage guy does come this way, there's no chance he'll recognize me as the user. Doobie Wah is a long distance automatic anyway, so even if he tried to damage it it wouldn't reflect back onto me. Stay on my toes? I ain't a ballerina, I'll be fine."
The man rolled his eyes,
"Just because Higashikata-san has you third in command doesn't mean you can treat me like some kind of irresponsible child. I'll be fine Tamaki-san, Aisho out."
The man who was called himself Aisho hung up the phone, and then turned to look at Kars.
"What? You're still here?"
"You know Kira Yoshikage. How?"
"Why do you want to know? It's not any of your business, buzz off man."
Aisho turned around, starting to walk off before Kars tightly grabbed his shoulder, stopping him in place. Aisho quickly smacked him away however.
"Hey! I told you to buzz off!"
He yelled, before finally walking off. Kars stood in place for a moment, before looking at his hand. He seemed to concentrate for a moment, before his pinky finger turned into a butterfly and began to flutter after Aisho. Kars didn't know really what he had just done, but he didn't focus on it for the time being. Right now, he needed to keep an eye on this Aisho person and find Kira. Did Aisho and Tamaki have ill intent? Was Kira in trouble? He wasn’t going to stand here and wait to find out, so he ran off in the direction of Kira’s workplace. Kars wanted to understand what was happening, why he was here, and help the people who so kindly took him in in any way he could.
Kira headed into a nearby alleyway, needing to get away from civilization as to not grab too much attention. This was the worst. The absolute worst. This Stand wasn’t letting up at all, how did it work? As Kira ran through the alley, he grabbed onto a trash can and threw it in front of the spinning vortex, hoping it would slow down its endless chase. The Stand ripped through the metal as if it were nothing, crushing it and bending it with its wind. At least Kira knew its strength now. Luckily, the trash can’s sacrifice slowed the Stand down, giving Kira a chance to get out of its sight and hopefully out of its range as he left the alley and continued on his way down the sidewalk. He panted heavily, hoping the chase was finally over. He had gotten away from it, right? He slowed down, finally taking a breather and putting a hand over his chest. He slumped up against a wall, his chest heaving, finally attempting to calm down and process the situation. He had to think. If he was the user, where would he be? The user must’ve been nearby, right? Kira had an automatic sub-Stand himself, and it still has a range. This thing must’ve had a limited range as well, so the user could be anywhere. But, that meant trying to pick him out from an entire town full of people. Kira buried his face into his hands, letting out a groan of annoyance and practically slammed the back of his head against the wall he was leaning on, caring less about the pain.
He cursed out, slamming his head against the wall again. His rage was building, everything was so frustrating. He just wanted to live a normal life, was that too much to ask for? A quiet life, living alone without a care in the world, doing what he loved without being judged for it. But no. No . He had to deal with this bullshit. ‘Stand users attract other Stand users’ my ass, he thought to himself. He finally pulled his hands away from his face, looking at his surroundings. Cool, nobody was around him so nobody saw him slam his head against a wall and have a minor little outburst of anger. But, also, shit. Nobody was here, which meant it would be harder to find the user. He wasn’t even standing in place for a minute or two, before feeling a cold breeze freeze him to the bone. Oh no. He looked over at his right shoulder only to see that vortex Stand, slowly forming and growing as it prepared itself to chase him again. Kira immediately started running in the opposite direction of it, not waiting to watch it slowly grow and then kill him.
“Shit! How the Hell..?!”
He blurted out to himself, already beginning to pant heavily. Kira could admit he wasn’t the most active guy, so having to run for this long was a damn workout. Despite that, he had to figure out how the Stand found him again. How was it appearing and disappearing? He tried to think back to when he first encountered it in his workplace. He remembered it disappeared when he was talking to his coworker, but why? He tried to recall the events. He was approached by his coworker, he was asked something, he…
He held his breath. When talking to his coworker, he stopped breathing out of fear of being killed by the Stand, but it instead vanished into thin air. Kira stopped in place, covering his mouth and nose and holding his breath, deciding to test his theory. The Stand came at Kira at high speeds, but he could see it shrink in size as it got closer, eventually vanishing into thin air. The Stand was affected by his breathing, the heavier his breathing got the more powerful the Stand became. He immediately took this chance to start running again. Now he knew the one weakness that this thing had, even if it wouldn’t go too far. At the very least, it gave him time to get farther away from it and think.
Though, he didn’t need to think for long when he ended up running into a familiar face. And by running into, it’s in the literal sense. He hadn’t been paying attention to what was in front of him, looking behind himself to see if the Stand had appeared again. The second he turned his head back around, he was met with hard muscles and almost thrown back from the sheer force of the impact. He was about to apologize before realizing it was Kars. He was actually kind of thankful to see him for a second.
“Oh my God, Kars. We have to go. Some kind of Stand is chasing me, it could come back any second now. I’ve gotta find the user-“
“What is a Stand?”
Kira paused as he gave Kars a look. What surprised Kira more was the fact that Kars could form a sentence in almost fluent Japanese.
“A Stand. What is it? I’ve heard you and a few others mention them, but I don’t understand the concept.”
Kira was about to open his mouth and say something before that dreaded breeze chilled him to the bone.
“Look, there’s really no time to explain something like that. I need to start running!”
He immediately pushed passed Kars as the vortex like Stand began forming again. Kars didn’t seem to notice it, as he followed Kira and nudged him.
“I may not understand the idea of a Stand, but I think I know who might be troubling you.”
Kira continued to give Kars a confused and odd look, before Kars gripped very tightly onto his arm and dragged him elsewhere. That was when Kira noticed that one of Kars’s pink fingers was… Missing?
“What the-?! Where the Hell are you taking me?”
“To your perpetrator.”
His chest was heaving, and anxiety was pooling up in him. He had nothing to be afraid of, yet every time he had to send his Stand out there was always that little bit of anxiety and worry in him. What if he was caught? What would happen to him then? No, he wouldn’t be caught. Would he? He was in the middle of Morioh Park, they wouldn’t bother looking here.. Right? Right?? He reached into his pocket and pulled out his bottle of medication, twisting and opening the cap of it. He only had one pill left. No, it wouldn’t suffice.
He mumbled to himself, looking at the little pellet in the palm of his hand.
“Dammit, I really didn’t want to have to go back to Dr. Wu so soon..”
He spoke out loud to himself,
“That guy’s a total weirdo. Hoarding all those defunct Rokkaka.. None of them are even the True one anyhow.”
He sighed, popping the little medicine pellet into his mouth.
“Why did I have to be the one to go after these guys anyway??”
He huffed and kicked a rock across the ground.
“Stupid Damo! Always telling me to do missions I can barely handle! He’s got a powerful Stand, he’s second in command, so why couldn’t he have just done this himself?!”
He panted heavily and leaned up against a tree. He heard a rustling of bushes nearby as his anxiety spiked.
“Y’know, ya shouldn’t be talkin’ ‘bout your superior like dat.”
He looked up to see a familiar face. A dismorphed and very painful face to look at, but a face nonetheless. He calmed down, realizing who it was, his expression changing into a very cold one.
“What do you want, Dolomite? Can’t you see I’m busy?”
“Busy doin’ what? Wallowin’ in ya own self pidy?”
“No, busy sitting here while I wait for my Stand to get rid of its target. Go away, I’m not supposed to be talking to you anyway.”
“Like anybody would know I spoke to ya. It's been a couple’a years since I last saw you. I’m like a father seein’ his kid again after years of divorce.”
“That’s a really, really sad and weird way to put it.”
“Well I’m a really really sad an’ weird person. Back to da main topic, why’re you talkin’ all dat smack ‘bout Tamaki?”
“Don’t you hate him too?”
“Oh yeah, absolutely. Still do, but he might hear ya an’ do the same ding he did to me right to ya. Youse a young kid, Aisho. I don’t get why ya still in da Rokkaka business anyhow.”
“He only did what he did to you because you purposely betrayed Higashikata-San and stole the True Rokakaka and did something with it. You’re a traitor.”
“I ain’ts no traitor Aisho, what I did back den was for da greater good of humanity. Ya and all of Higashikata Co don’t understand da power dat ding holds. An’, besides, at dis point ya’ll are searchin’ for somedin’ dat’s prolly long gone by now.”
“As if. You’re just lying to me because you’re spiteful. You wanted the True Rokakaka all to yourself, that’s what Damo told me. It’s hidden somewhere in Morioh, and we’re going to find it for the greater good of humanity.”
There was a deep silence between Aisho and Dolomite, leading Dolomite to just shake his head and start turning the other way.
“Youse been brainwashed kid. I pidy you, I really do. But, das alright. You’ll eventually see da unrelenting power and evil da True Rokakaka holds one day. Higashikata will regret ever wantin’ dat ding.”
Despite Dolomite not having arms or legs, he was quick to scurry off into the darker part of the trees, disappearing out of Aisho’s sight. Aisho gulped, he knew he shouldn’t believe a single word Dolomite said to him. But, it worried him. If Aisho had to be honest, he didn’t really know what the True Rokakaka was capable of. And the main thing that scared Aisho was one thing Dolomite had said. “At dis point ya’ll are searchin’ for somedin’ dat’s prolly long gone by now.” Probably ? What did he mean by probably? Aisho would’ve thought on it more if it weren’t for the fact that his train was cut off by a butterfly, fluttering his way. It calmed him a little bit. A cute little butterfly, just what he needed to take his mind off things. That was, until footsteps could be heard running his way. He was a little confused for a moment, and before he could even turn his head fully to see who was there, he was punched right in the face.
“YOU SON OF A BITCH!”
A man yelled, as Aisho flew back and landed right on his rear. He immediately reached up to his nose to find that it was bleeding. He stared up to see the target that should have been dead by now. Kira Yoshikage, and the other bigger, purple haired guy he thought wasn’t that much of a problem. But, as it turned out, big guy was a very big problem. Kira was his main focus however, and by the looks of it he was absolutely pissed.
“I was chased down by your fucking Stand for the past half an hour, embarrassed myself in my own workplace and possibly in front of many different public places and people in general. Now, you have made me absent from work and I will have to go back tomorrow to pick up my shit because at this point I might as well be fired for leaving like that on a moments notice. All because of your Stand. Your fucking Stand.”
Aisho tried to back off away from Kira, but Kira kept him in place by placing his shoe right on his face, digging it into the ground.
Kira turned over to look at the big guy, Kars, who was busy with the butterfly morphing back into his missing pinky finger.
“Do you mind giving me a minute or two? I’ll be done quick.”
Kars just nodded as Kira turned to look back down at Aisho, moving his foot away from his face and hovering it above him.
“I’m going to beat you to death now.”
Kira stated, as he immediately stomped his foot onto Aisho’s face, and repeated this action a good few times.
Chapter 55: And You May Ask Yourself, How Did I Get Here?
Even though Kars was gone and out of the house and ditched Valentine, it didn’t stop him from blabbering on and on about nothing in particular. Diavolo and Diego hated it, simply waiting for him to shut up. But Enrico didn’t mind it. He kind of used it as background noise while he read a newspaper that covered things around the world. Enrico was actually surprised newspaper businesses still existed. However, to Enrico’s slight disappointed and to Diavolo and Diego’s pleasure, Valentine was cut off by the sound of the front door opening, Kars and a very disheveled yet satisfied looking Kira making their entrance. Kira’s entire left shoe was almost entirely smeared in blood, including the bottom part of the pant leg. Both of his hands had little bits of blood on them as well, and his hair was a mess. The only people who weren’t fazed by this were Kars and Diavolo.
“I-.. Oh… Oh my..”
Enrico had a hand over his mouth, having a hard time comprehending the sight in front of him. Diego had to cover his nose,
“Christ, I can smell the blood from here. What the Hell did you do?”
Kira didn’t look at anyone and just walked past them and sat on the living room couch, a tiny little smile on his face.
“I beat a man.”
Kira replied, and Diavolo snickered.
Enrico shot him a look and attempted to process it all.
“Who.. Exactly did you beat? What even happened?”
Kars decided to speak up and answer for him.
“Yoshikage was being chased by a Stand, and we bumped into each other and found the user. Then Yoshikage beat him. He asked me very politely if he could do so.”
Enrico rubbed his forehead, letting out a groan.
“And when I thought I found another somewhat sane person, he goes out and beats someone to death..”
He mumbled before fully speaking up.
“Who was this man? Did you get a name? Anything?”
Kira stared up at the ceiling and pondered over the question.
“Oh.. I think I heard him say Aisho? He was babbling a lot of nonsense. Something about a Rokkaka and a True Rokakaka , probably trying to give me information to make me stop. He mentioned a fruit parlor too. Higashikata Fruit Parlor.”
Kira glanced over at the others. He couldn’t help but let out a laugh, realizing that he was probably just as insane as the rest of these fools.
“I suppose this means I have to play a part in this little Rokkaka situation now, don’t I? And to think I could have avoided it..”
Enrico just shook his head in disappointment and minor shock,
“Well, that helps us a bit. But, first, you absolutely need a shower or something. You’re smothered in blood.”
Kira didn’t argue and didn’t wait to leave the room and to a nearby bathroom. Enrico looked at the others in the room, taking a deep breath and letting it out.
“Alright. At least we have a lead now, and a location. But, I’m pretty sure this organization knows who all of us are by now, so we might need fake identities. Diavolo, could you get Doppio? He could be extremely vital to this mission.”
Diavolo looked at him and raised an eyebrow,
“You’re not gonna dress him up as a girl again, are you?”
“If you have a better disguise, then I won’t.”
“..I’ll see what I can do.”
Diavolo looked a little hesitant. At least, not very happy when it came to the topic of Doppio. But, before Enrico could really notice, he was already gone and had left to another room.
“Alright. Valentine, you could probably disguise yourself as well.”
Enrico continued. Valentine just gave him a look.
“As a girl?”
“Only if you want to be disguised as a girl.”
Valentine pondered over it for a moment,
“...Would I make a pretty girl? That’s the question.”
“Look, Valentine, we don’t have a lot of time for that.”
Diego nudged Enrico in the shoulder,
“Wait, Enrico, no. Now he’s got me thinking about whether he’d make a cute girl or not.”
Kars chimed in,
“If you put him in a dress, maybe you could mistake him for a woman. A fairly elderly, masculine woman. But a woman nonetheless.”
Valentine squinted at nothing, actually putting effort into thinking about this.
“But now I need to know what kind of dress.”
Enrico chimed in on the conversation, wanting to end this topic altogether.
“All of you are putting way too much thought and effort into this, so I’ll just go out and disguise myself instead.”
“What? You want to dress up as a girl too? I mean, you’ve already got a dress.”
Enrico just took a deep breath and sighed, walking off to the other rooms. Diego rolled his eyes,
“Oh, come on! It was funny!”
Diavolo had locked himself in one of the guest rooms. He was extremely nervous to call Doppio again. Their last conversation had ended on a very sour note, leading to Doppio resenting him and locking himself away somewhere in their mind. Diavolo was so used to nonstop calling from Doppio whenever he took control, wanting to know if he was okay or something stupid like that.
Diavolo missed those calls. Even if it had only been two days, he wanted Doppio to call him. Him and Doppio were a pair, and if Diavolo was separated from him for too long he didn’t know what he’d do. Doppio was the Moomin to his Snufkin, the Jerry to his Tom, the Arthur Everest to his Tick. Without one, the other is empty. Hollow. It just isn’t the same without his second half. He picked up a nearby pen, and breathed in. It was all or nothing. He put it up to his ear, and waited for a second before saying anything.
He spoke softly in Italian, only to be met with silence on the other end.
“ What do you want? ”
The sound of Doppio’s voice startled him for a moment, but it didn’t take him long to regain his composure.
“Well, I needed you-“
“ To dress up in disguise, right? I heard everything. I’m not stupid like you think of me to be. ”
“I never called you stupid.”
“ You enjoy making me feel that way, though. ”
“I never meant to.”
“ Like how you never meant to try and abandon my new friends? Never meant to take over my life? Never meant to- “
“Okay, I get the point.”
“ You obviously don’t. You never get it. You only ever cared about yourself. You never thought about how I feel about things, or asked for my opinion on something. It’s always ‘Doppio do this’, ‘Doppio do that’, and then sweet talking me like I’m a child. ”
Diavolo was quiet for a good while, the only sound being his breathing and the ice cold atmosphere.
“ Just because we’re in the same body doesn’t mean one of us is more superior to the other. Ever since we both got involved with the mafia you’ve been so power hungry. And.. It’s not the friend I used to know as a child. You’re not the friend I used to know. ”
Diavolo struggled to find the words to respond with. He had never heard Doppio snap at him like this before, and it kind of angered him. It frustrated him beyond belief, actually. How dare he talk back to him, Diavolo? How dare Doppio snap at the man that saved his life and protected them both for all these years? This was utter blasphemy and nonsense. If he could, he’d slap Doppio upside the head for saying such things. But, Diavolo kept his anger to himself. It wouldn’t get him anywhere right now. The only important thing right now is the fact that Doppio is out of hiding and talking. Diavolo had to think strategically about his response, how to talk Doppio out of his depressive state and get him to just do as he said.
“..I’m sorry, my Doppio.”
“ What? ”
“I’m sorry. I want to apologize for my actions. I’ve been so blinded for so long, only wanting to do what was necessary to protect us. To protect you . Doppio, without you I would be nothing. I’d be a fleeting thought without you. I love you. You know this, right? It’s definitely not the first time I’ve told you, and it won’t be the last.”
“ And you know I’m not taking you up on your bullshit, right? ”
Diavolo could almost smell the venom pouring out from every word Doppio spoke. It was filled with resentment.
“ And for me to even think about giving you a second chance. No matter what I say and what I do, you continue to treat me like some kind of child. I’m 33 years old, I’m the same age as you because I am you. You treat me like I’m the second personality. ”
Doppio was quiet for a bit, while Diavolo tried to figure out what to say in response. He opened his mouth a few times, only to close them over and over again like a fish out of water.
“ I think we need some time apart. I would say I’m sorry for this, but, I don’t feel anything except anger. ”
Silence on Doppio’s side. Absolutely nothing.
Diavolo called out, before gritting his teeth and throwing the pen he used as a phone right at the wall, the pen shattering and leaving a small ink spot where it was thrown. He buried his face into his hands. How did it end up like this? How did he get here? What led up to him being in Japan looking for some owner of a fucking fruit company? And, more importantly, why hasn’t he killed any of these bumbling fuckwits yet? Before he could ask himself any more questions, a voice interrupted him. An annoying, graveling, absolutely obnoxious one, but a voice nonetheless.
“You’re paying for that pen and cleaning up the wall.”
Diavolo whipped around to see a blonde haired and blue eyed creature from some kind of lovecraftian horror story watch him. Oh, scratch that, it was just Kira.
“How much did you hear?”
“All of it. I really could care less about your boyfriend problems, I just want you to pay for my broken pen and get out of my new room.”
By God, did Diavolo want to wring Kira’s neck and gouge out his eyeballs so he could never give him that smug little look of his again. He barely knew the guy, but he didn’t need to. All he needed to know was that he hated that man, and that man hated him just as much right back. It was a mutual hatred they agreed on silently. Diavolo scoffed in response to Kira and started to walk out of the room, not before they both gave each other death glares that translated into ‘I’m going to kill you in your sleep.’ But, right now, they both had more important things to do than kill each other.
Chapter title is named after Once In A Lifetime by Talking Heads!
Apologies for slow updates, I'm doing my best to go a little slower when writing chapters so I don't rush anything and it comes out like the "21st Century Schizoid Man" parts and any others that seem too fast paced.
Chapter 56: Privacy Is A Sacred Thing
This chapter took way longer to make than I originally thought. Sorry for my slow updates! I might take a break until winter break to focus on school, since finals and such are approaching.
But, I'm not dead! I've just been working on this story and am currently making another fanfic that I may or may not post (depending on the outcome). Thank you for your patience!
P.S: I'm also active on Twitter, (@Mehoygerfunkl) so if you want to chat or would like to see my shitposts, visit me there!
Diavolo had told Enrico about Doppio being out of commission for the time being, and while it was slightly frustrating Enrico came to a compromise. He and Diego would go together to the Higashikata Fruit Parlor and attempt to gain information there. Valentine and Kars would both go out with them, but travel elsewhere in town near the parlor to look out for suspicious figures. Diavolo and Kira both stayed home to make sure nothing happened while they were gone.
6:42 PM, November 16.
Silence was the only thing that ran through the house. Uncomfortable, agonizing silence as they sat across from each other at a table. The two of them never really thought out fully what they’d do alone together, so the awkward atmosphere was heightened, both of them looking like they were about to say something but unable to start a conversation. Diavolo inhaled sharply, which broke the silence and gained Kira’s attention for the most part.
“So.. Weather’s nice.”
“...Really? That’s all you have to say?”
“I’m under a lot of pressure right now alright?”
“To be honest, I expected a bit more of you.”
“Alright, I get we’re supposed to hate each other and all, but God fucking dammit man could you let me try to pretend we’re friends or something? This silence is gonna kill me.”
“The fact that you seem so tormented by this silence makes me want to ignore and defy you even more, just out of pure entertainment.”
“You are so fucking evil.”
“Oh, I wouldn’t say that. I’m more.. Chaotic neutral? Chaotic good, maybe.”
“Chaotic evil. Or just purely chaotic.”
“You’re more of a chaotic evil type. Your name kind of gives it away. Doesn’t Diavolo stand for something in Italian?”
“Don’t say it.”
“Hm.. It’s on the tip of my tongue..”
“Don’t do it.”
“De… Decal? Debris?”
“Don’t you fucking dar-“
“ Devil .”
Diavolo gave Kira the meanest and most bloodthirsty look he possibly could before standing up, ready to make his way over to Kira and give him a beat down.
“That’s it. You’ve broken the camel's back, I’m killing you right here, right now, without interruptions.”
Kira stood up from the other end of the table as well, having already prepared to bring out his Stand.
“The feelings are mutual. Bring it, Devil .”
“I sure will, Killer .”
Before the two of them could even fully bring out their Stands, a crash could be heard coming from the back of Kira’s house. They both stopped and paused for a moment, unsure how to feel about this.
“..We’re the only one’s in the house, right?”
Diavolo looked over and gave Kira an openly concerned look. Kira was sharing the same expression.
“Yes. I even checked.. At least, I thought I checked fairly thoroughly.”
Their awkward silence was turned into an intense and threatening silence. Someone was in this house, or at the very least close to it. The two both got on guard, taking out their Stands and quietly making their way to the back of the house. Upon closer inspection, Kira saw that outside his home a tiny tree had been smashed in and was lying on the ground. He was hesitant, but needed to know the cause of the tree falling. He ran outside, inspecting the large dent that was made in the tree’s bark. Inside of that dent was a fairly big rock. It looked like it was thrown into the tree with some inhuman force, but how? And by who?
“Did you find anything yet? It just looks like a tree fell.”
Diavolo yelled out, breaking Kira’s train of thought which annoyed him. Kira stood up and turned around. Maybe a group of kids threw this rock over a fence because they think it’d be funny? He didn’t know, but thinking on it more made him paranoid. It couldn’t have been a Stand, could it?
“I… Think some kids threw a rock or something and knocked it over. I can’t really tell.”
“A rock?? How big of a rock we talking? Like, tiny pillbug big or mutated ant big?”
Kira squinted and glared at Diavolo and shook his head. God, sooner or later his stupidity was going to rub off on him. Before Kira could look up at him again, a small rock flew right at him and knocked him in the forehead. He stumbled back a bit, rubbing his forehead and feeling it bruise.
“W-What the Hell’s wrong with you?!”
Diavolo gave him a confused look.
“Eh? What did I do??”
“You just chucked a damn rock at me, that’s what you did!”
“I didn’t? I’ve been standing on your back porch the entire time, what are you even talking about?”
Kira blinked a few times before realizing that Diavolo truly hadn’t moved from that spot. There would be no way he could pick up a rock from there without moving, so where the Hell did that rock come from? He turned around to look at the smashed in tree, only to see that the big rock that was lodged into it was gone. Immediately he knew this was a Stand attack and started running towards his house.
“We have to move!! This is a Stand attack, they wanted us to-“
A rock about the size of a pencil case came flying towards Kira, and smashed right into his back, causing him to fall forward and struggle to move. Kira coughed as he attempted to get back up, while the rock was still digging into his back as if it were being pushed in.
“Sh-Shit… This.. This Stand.. W-What kind of Stand is this?”
He coughed up a small spurt of blood as another rock, the size of a thumb, flew at his face and began digging into his cheek.
“ I Am A Rock .”
Both Kira and Diavolo turned to see a man whose body was half rock, his rock body slowly turning into skin.
“That is my Stand. You made it easy to eliminate you, approaching me without any second thought.”
Diavolo took out King Crimson and got into a battle ready stance, glaring at the perpetrator. The man just observed from afar,
“What a scary looking Stand. Such a shame that you won’t be able to use it after this.”
Diavolo didn’t even bother speaking, before activating King Crimson’s main ability and entering his own world of skipped time. He was in one place to another in a millisecond, appearing in front of the enemy and punching him harshly in the face with King Crimson , knocking him back a foot or two. The man looked stunned for a bit, as if he wasn’t expecting Diavolo to be as strong as he was. The man was bleeding harshly from his nose and mouth, but didn’t look bothered.
“H-Ha.. You’re… A formidable opponent. Not only is your Stand strong, it appears there’s something more to it..”
Diavolo didn’t listen to what he was saying. It wasn’t important to him, as he reeled back to punch him again, only to be stopped when a rock came flying at his face and knocked him down.
“I’ll need to keep a better eye on you, Diavolo Una . It seems there’s still a few hidden things about you. I need to keep a distance, it seems."
Diavolo immediately perked up, however he was still dazed from getting hit in the face by a rock.
“Gah.. U-..Una ? Did you just say Una ?!”
Diavolo angrily screamed at the man as he attempted to stand up, only for a rock to launch itself at Diavolo’s back leg and dig into it, knocking him back down. The man had already started climbing up a fence, ready to make his escape.
“H-How the Hell do you know such information? Just who are you?!"
The man paused for a moment to look at Diavolo,
"I'll be honest, I'm not entirely sure who gave us this information. I don't question who Higashikata-san decides to associate himself with. But, one thing I know for sure is that whoever gave us this info isn't on your side."
And as quickly as he had arrived, he had jumped over the fence and left. The Stand's effects eventually wore off and the rocks that had been digging into their skin fell to the ground. Diavolo didn't wait to immediately get up, and begin the pursuit of this man.
"I'm going after him. I'm going after this Higashikata and killing him."
Kira struggled to get up off the ground, having felt like he broke something.
"We don't even know where or who he is.. How do you expect to kill a man we've never seen? Besides, we shouldn't just jump into this situation. We don't know what this enemy Stand is capable of. Even if we do find this Higashikata, we don't know what their Stand is. It could wipe our asses off the face of the Earth in a millisecond if we aren't careful!"
Diavolo turned to look at Kira, giving him a determined glare.
"The fear of the unknown never stopped you from trying to kill my Doppio, did it now? So why should it stop me?"
Kira huffed and crossed his arms,
“Alright, be that way. You and the others are all idiots, getting yourselves killed over some fruit. Why are you even doing this anyway? For a sense of superiority? Just to feel good about yourself? I suppose it doesn’t matter, when you all die I’ll finally be alone again and be able to go back to how my life once was-“
“Even if we do die, your life won’t be the same ever again.”
Diavolo interrupted him quickly, making Kira jump a little.
“This Higashikata was able to find out my full name, maybe even more. Who’s to say he hasn’t found out your full name? Birthday? Place of work? Background? Medical history? Who’s to say this corperation won’t still see you as a threat and use such information against you? They might just have a record of your murders too. What would happen if they released that info? I can see the news reports already, ‘Local businessman found to have been the main suspect in 15 years worth of murders’.”
Diavolo already started walking towards the fence where their attacker had escaped, planning to follow suit and climb over as well.
“We’ve both got things to hide, things we don’t want people to know. I may be nice enough not to tell others of your wrongdoings, but who’s to say this Higashikata is? Privacy is a sacred thing among the two of us, that’s one thing we have in common. But, it’s none of my business what you decide to do. Besides, you’re a pretty secretive guy. Won’t tell any of us a single thing about yourself. So who am I to say anything about you?”
Diavolo prepared to jump the fence before Kira’s voice stopped him.
“Help me off the ground.”
Diavolo whipped around to see Kira, his expression turned cold yet full of fear and anger.
“I said help me get off the ground. I’m going after Higashikata with you.”
“Shut up and just help me up already.”
Diavolo snickered, wallowing over towards Kira and reaching his hand out, pulling him up.
“I had a feeling you’d come around eventually.”
“I’m not ‘coming around’. When the topic of my identity and background comes up, I’m determined to keep such things a secret from anyone and everyone.”
“Really? Now why’s that?”
“I don’t push for your past, so you shouldn’t push for mine. You just stated earlier that privacy was a sacred thing, so let’s keep it that way.”
Kira limped slightly as he made his way to the fence. He checked his watch,
“Christ, it’s almost 7:00.. Let’s get this over and done with quickly.”
Kira, ignoring the pain he felt in his chest, jumped up in an attempt to grab onto the edge of the fence and start climbing. He dangled off of it for a moment, before flailing his legs in an attempt to find something to latch onto and boost himself up. However, in turn, he ended up just looking like a cat dangling from a tree branch. Diavolo watched the sight in amusement, having not realized how short Kira really was compared to him and the others. Kira huffed and turned his head around the best he could to try and look at Diavolo,
“Don’t just stand there and laugh at me you bastard! Hurry up and help me get over the fence!!”
7:01 PM, November 16.
Kars spoke, watching the flamboyant man happily pay for two strangely colored drinks with black pearls on the bottom.
“Are you positive that purchasing two odd beverages with Yoshikage’s money unsupervised will help us point out suspicious figures?”
Valentine just turned back around and smiled, handing the drink to Kars, who had to very gently grab the cup as to not crush it accidentally.
“Absolutely positive! I mean, think about it. We stick out pretty well during the night, so if any enemies see we’re having fun they’d want to ruin that, right? Right! So it’s full proof. Now let’s hurry up and get a move on! I wanna see if Tonio’s restaurant is still open by now.”
Kars looked down at the plastic cup that he was given. The drink was a light purple color with what looked like to be black pearls swimming at the bottom of it.
“What is this drink? It has such an odd color and consistency.”
Valentine pursed his lips against his drinks light blue straw and drank some of the pink liquid. He paused for a moment, having a hard time distinguishing what the taste really was.
“I’m not really sure. I think it was called.. Bubble? No, boba tea! Doesn’t smell or taste like tea though. At least, not the tea that I’ve drank before. At least it’s tasty.”
“...You humans have such peculiar ideas.”
“You’re telling me! Things have changed so much since 1890.. I feel like I’m the alien sometimes.”
Valentine laughed a little as he continued to walk blindly into the night. He really didn’t have any idea where he was going to who he was looking for right now. If anything, he was more focused on seeing the sights here in this town and having fun. He felt so free. He didn’t have to worry about responsibilities, law, or strict and boring morals when it came to being a president. Now he had the ability to experience the world for what it was instead of simply staying put in an office, only being able to travel by train or horse drawn carriage. Valentine wondered to himself, where would he go next after all of this madness? After they finally take down this Rokkaka business, what places could he see next? Egypt maybe. Or, perhaps Enrico and him could go back to Italy? He could probably try to convince Kira to take him to Tokyo afterwards..
His train of thought was derailed as he turned back to look at Kars, who was staring off into the distance at something. Kars pointed,
“There’s people there. By that light.”
Valentine turned to look at what Kars was pointing at. It looked to be a schoolyard, and two spotlights shone onto a small court with basketball hoops and soccer nets on either side. Two young looking men were inside the court, one of them kicking a ball around while the other had a mobile device up to his ear and seemed to be talking to someone on the other end.
“How strange… Why would people be playing soccer out here at this time of night? Who are those two anyway? They even look strange.”
“Those are the twins.. I’ve seen them before.”
Valentine watched Kars walk off towards the court where the two twins were, and Valentine worriedly followed.
“Wait! Kars, explain yourself! Who are those two? Do you know them? Why are we approaching them?”
“They’re suspicious. They tried to kick that sphere object at Kira earlier today. What reason do they have to be here as well?”
Valentine really didn’t know what was going through Kars’ head right now, but for the time being he decided to just take his word for what he said and follow along. As the two approached the twins, the one with the soccer ball quickly noticed their presence. The one on the phone who was saying something in Japanese was also quick to notice the two approaching them, and didn’t take long to say a few final words and hang up. The twins recognized Kars immediately in the spotlight. The one who was on the phone previously tugged down a sleeve over one of his hands and approached Kars, who spoke up without hesitation.
“Who are you two? You’ve both been suspicious figures since I first spotted you.”
Kars spoke in fluent Japanese. Japanese that Valentine didn’t understand at all. He was also surprised to see that Kars even could speak Japanese.
“You’re Kars, right? The guy next to you is Valentine.”
The twin who was covering a hand with his sleeve was the first to speak.
“How do you know our names?”
“Wouldn’t you like to know? We’re just doing our job.”
The twin looked over at Valentine, switching his language to English just so he could speak to him.
“You. You are Valentine, yea?”
He glanced at the twin with the soccer ball, then looked back at Valentine.
“You are American, know what soccer is? Play round with us. Best 2-3.”
Valentine looked around for a moment, then pointed at himself.
“M-Me? Play soccer? Well, I haven’t really done that in a while.. This is pretty sudden-”
Kars grabbed onto his shoulder and cut him off,
“Valentine, it’s most likely a trap. Such a sudden request of them, it’s suspicious.”
“Oh, relax Kars! It’s just a round of soccer.”
Valentine leaned close to Kars and spoke in a whisper,
“And, if they’re really as suspicious as you think they are, if I beat them at a game of soccer it might lower their confidence and pride so I could get some answers out of them. It’s a win win!”
Valentine gave Kars a reassuring nudge in the arm and handed him his boba drink as he took off his pink coat.
“I haven’t played soccer in years. I’m not sure how much its changed or if it’s a little different here in Japan, but I’ll give it a shot.”
Valentine handed his coat over to Kars so he could hold that along with his boba, getting into position on one side of the court while the twins did the same. So it’s a two against one then, Valentine thought to himself. That seems a little unfair but I’ll go with it for now, he continued on in his head before the twin with the soccer ball began to quickly dribble the ball around. Valentine must’ve felt really old right now, because he was already getting a little disoriented. This guy seemed to have been taking this game of soccer a little too seriously with how intensely he seemed to have been moving. Before Valentine could really even fully react, the ball had already flown past his face and into the goal behind him. He was a little shocked at first, but quickly shrugged it off as an accident.
“Woah! Ah, be a bit more careful next time..”
Kars squinted at the soccer ball that was kicked, watching Valentine move to kick it back towards the twins. That was when he saw it. There was an opening in the ball. He wasn’t sure why it was there or what exactly it did, but it the ball looked to be held together by a zipper that could open it. As Valentine kicked the ball back towards the twins, the zipper opened just a little bit more. There was something fishy about this. This wasn’t a regular game of soccer, there was definitely malicious intent behind it. One of the twins kicked the ball around a few times, before reeling back and giving it a fairly harsh kick. Valentine didn’t have much time to react before realizing the ball was heading right towards his face. Kars didn’t waste a millisecond before dropping his boba drink to the ground and jumping in front of Valentine, grabbing the soccer ball with one hand and keeping a strong firm grip onto it. Valentine blinked a few times before shaking his head and snapping back into reality. Kars was more focused on the soccer ball and the twins in front of him at the moment.
“You two were purposely aiming for Valentine. You’re both targeting us for something.”
The twin with the covered hand responded,
“What we’re targeting you for isn’t any of your guys’s business. We were recently ordered to assassinate the two of you, so we’re just here to do our job. Now let’s get this over with, we’ll make sure this goes by quickly.”
The zipper on the soccer ball was opened more so due to being kicked around and gripped onto so harshly, and a strange gas like substance was leaking out of the opening. Valentine could see it clear as day, why wasn’t Kars reacting to it? The gas eventually took a form, and it was obvious that this was a Stand ability.
“Kars! Let go of that ball!”
Kars gave Valentine a confused look before watching him reach a hand up and punt the ball away with a fist, the gas substance trailing behind the soccer ball as the Stand rolled away and disappeared back into the ball itself. Valentine felt a slight burning sensation in the hand he used to hit the ball away, and when looking down at it he could see his skin was red and bleeding, almost looking as if it were melting. Kars didn’t seem to understand how the injury came to be.
“One of them isn’t a Stand user..”
The twin who has been kicking the soccer ball around the entire time finally spoke up,
“The big purple haired one, Kars. He couldn’t see my Schott Key No.2 . We could take him out first, easy.”
The other twin nodded as he pulled up his sleeve, revealing one of his hands to be malformed and rocklike. Valentine nudged Kars with one of his arms,
“Get out of here and warn the others.”
Kars blinked a few times in slight disbelief,
“We were on the lookout for suspicious figures in the first place, right? So warn the others that we found some suspicious figures and that they’re trying to kill us.”
Kars didn’t budge as the twins got closer towards them, Valentine insisted and this time forcefully pushed Kars.
“What are you standing there for? Hurry up and go! I’ll distract them!”
Valentine grabbed his coat from Kars and turned to face the twins again while Kars took off in another direction. The twin with the soccer ball was about to go after him, but the other one stopped him.
“No, let him be. Right now, Valentine is our target. Yotsuyu and Damo can take care of him anyway.”
Valentine gulped. This wasn't going to go well for him. Despite his Stand ability, 2 against 1 was still a risky play on his part. He wasn't sure what these two had up their sleeves, but it definitely wasn't a magic trick. The twins split off into opposite directions of Valentine, beginning to circle him. They were most likely trying to disorient him. Valentine slowly reached into his coat that was draped over his arm, wanting to be slight with his movements, waiting for one of the twins to attack first. Before he could even blink, the twin with the soccer ball punted the ball upwards and side kicked it right at Valentine's face. The ball luckily zoomed right past his face as Valentine pulled out a pistol from his coat and fired twice, one bullet missed while another visibly lodged itself into the twin's upper right arm. Now that Valentine had injured one twin, he had to disarm the other. But, before he could even turn around, a hand had already wrapped itself around his neck and gripped tightly. Valentine tried to aim his pistol at the hand on his neck, debating on risking the chances of firing. Before he was able to pull the trigger, he was kicked harshly in the spine, making him drop his pistol and coat to the ground out of pain and slight shock. He was able to glance behind himself, spotting the twin having shoved his free hand into the opening of the soccer ball. What kind of Stand was this? Wouldn't the toxic gas inside of the ball have affected him? That's when he realized, this twin's Stand was his malformed hand. But, that didn't explain what its ability was. Valentine was quick to find out however, when he noticed the toxic gas from the soccer ball was somehow appearing from the hand wrapped around Valentine's neck. A Stand that transferred different things from one hand to another without fail. Such a peculiar ability, but it wasn't like it mattered at this point. Valentine was struggling to breath, the poisonous gas burning away his throat as it felt like his skin was melting away. It got to a point where he couldn't even see anymore, his eyes having most likely burned out of his sockets. It hurt, it was painful. This burning sensation was agonizing, it was probably one of the most painful things he's ever felt. The hand wrapped around his throat eventually let him go as he fell to the ground, convulsing for a moment. One of the twins said something in Japanese, something Valentine couldn't even hear. Surprisingly, Valentine could still see out of one of his eyes for a moment, staring at his pink coat on the ground.
".. D-D ... 4C …"
Was the only thing he could gurgle out before everything went dark, the last thing he could hear being footsteps and voices.
Funny Valentine life lesson: Don't play soccer with two random Japanese twins at 7 PM. They might end up being assassins.
Chapter 58: The Pressure Grows
7:16 PM, November 16.
By the time Kars had found Diavolo and Kira and led them back to the small court where he and Valentine were attacked, the two assassins were gone and Valentine's corpse was the only thing left to be found. The sight of his mangled body was something to behold, it was scary to think a Stand could do such a thing. The melted skin, the visible bone, the bloodied pavement, it was hard for Kars and Diavolo to look at. For Kira? Not so much. He didn't seem phased. He didn't look upset or vengeful about Valentine's death either. More so relieved about having one less mouth to feed and one less person to bother him. Diavolo kneeled down next to the body, lifting up one of the limp arms and putting a finger on his wrist.
"Well.. Shit. He's really dead."
He let out a nervous and shaky chuckle.
"I mean, I never liked the guy that much but… I didn't actually.. Y'know.."
Diavolo had a hard time pinpointing how he felt. On one hand, he knew he should feel happy about this. Valentine was one of the main reasons why he was stuck in this mess. Valentine was the one who helped that Risotto Nero overthrow his title as Boss of Passione. But, on the other hand, Valentine did do some okay things too. Back in Italy before they left, at that party Risotto had to celebrate his title as the new Boss, Valentine had been so kind to his Doppio in the tense environment. There was a reason Doppio saw him as a friend. In a way, Diavolo saw him as a friend too. But, he knew he shouldn't get so emotional over this. He saw Valentine's death coming from a mile away. A man so careless and reckless was to be expected to die so soon.
"It's a shame, but right now we should focus on who these assassins were, and they're reasoning for coming after us. We can plan a funeral or whatever later."
Diavolo glared at Kira. That bastard, not showing even a small shred of remorse. Diavolo was cold, but at the very least he could feel something . He could have at least acknowledged Valentine's death. Had Kira's murders numbed him to the idea of death that badly? Or was he truly just that heartless? Kira leaned down next to Valentine's coat on the ground, reaching to pick it up.
"There's a chance the assassins left something behind. Unlike me, most killers leave tracks, so it could be easy to find a-"
As Kira lifted the coat, a hand reached out from underneath it and grabbed onto his wrist. Kira let out a yell and jumped back as a familiar face came crawling out from underneath it.
"No need to scream, it's only me! Gee.. I really thought I was a goner for a second there."
Diavolo and Kars both looked shocked and even a little happy, while Kira was annoyed.
"Of course.. Just my luck to find out you weren't actually dead…"
Kira got up from off the ground and huffed, while Valentine dusted himself off and attempted to neaten his hair.
"Lighten up Kira! What, are you disappointed that I didn't die?"
Valentine laughed when asking that, joking about such a thing. He kind of froze when all he got in response was a cold and serious expression. The uncomfortable glare he got from Kira was soon cut off by Kars and Diavolo, rushing in to try and show concern as best as they possibly could. Valentine wasn't really expecting much from an ex-mob boss and some kinda alien from space.
"Christ, you scared the shit out of us. What took you so long to come back?"
Diavolo nudged Valentine harshly in the arm, who smiled a little.
"Well, before I sent out D4C to find another me, I panicked because I really thought I was gonna die. In return, D4C kind of.. Ah.. Freaked out a little. I had to try and calm it down before I came back. But,"
Valentine reached into his pocket and pulled out what looked like an ID of sorts.
"I didn't come back without any lead. I got one of those assassins ID's! I'm not sure what it's for, though. I uh.. Can't read Japanese..
Kira was quick to grab to ID away from Valentine, looking over it for a moment.
"It's an ID from Grape Hills Hospital here in Morioh. It appears this assassin is a security guard there. It isn't much, but it's definitely a lead."
"So, that's it then! Grape Hills Hospital is our next stop."
Valentine grabbed his coat from off the ground and already started leaving the court. Kars and Diavolo followed him without question, while Kira trailed behind.
"Wait, where are we going to go though? We can't just barge into a hospital at night for no reason and try to start looking for people who might not even be there."
Valentine stopped and turned to look at him, giving him a cheeky smile.
"Well, first we're gonna go and find Pucci and Diego. Then after we all group together we'll think of how to get into the hospital inconspicuously! Luckily though, I already have an idea for a plan in mind."
Valentine looked over Kira for a moment before turning back around and heading off.
"Now let's hurry it up! Pucci and Diego might already be at the Fruit Parlor!"
Diavolo scratched the back of his neck as he and Kars continued to follow Valentine.
"Huh… You know, I kinda forgot about Enrico and Diego. They're kinda like those characters in stories that are important for a few chapters and then don't appear again until it's warranted."
Diavolo crossed his arms,
"..Man, it's weird how life kinda resembles one huge book. Or, maybe I'm reading too much into it and I'm just getting existential."
Kira rolled his eyes and was quick to catch up with the others and add in his two-sense.
"You're just getting existential. Early midlife crisis, as they say."
"Shut the fuck up I didn't even ask you."
Diavolo practically hissed, both him and Kira immediately staying on opposite ends of each other to make as little contact as possible during the entire trip to the Higashikata Fruit Parlor.
It was already dark out. How long had it been since they first started making their way to the Parlor? Maybe it's been 20 minutes. Perhaps even longer. Even so, it wasn't a very long walk to the Fruit Parlor. Enrico and Diego made sure their disguises were as bland and natural as possible, as to make sure nobody could easily point them out. Enrico stole an interesting black button up shirt from Kira, wearing pale jeans and his usual black shoes. He wore a fairly fancy yet casual looking dark purple jacket, and a nice hat to cover up his stylized hair. Diego wore a blue hoodie which was open in the front, exposing a shirt that he too stole from Kira that had a white, blue, and red lighting bolt on it. His hair was messy but neat enough to look natural and less feral, and he wore a face mask to hide his mouth. The two were confident in their disguises, even going as far as to come up with fake names to make sure they weren't found out. Luckily, the Fruit Parlor was still open. Lights were on, and through the glass doors they could see a man behind a counter. As the two walked inside, they could see he was busy cleaning a few glass cups, most likely preparing to close down for the night. However, that didn't stop him from noticing the two walk and and give them a little smile.
"Oh, I didn't think there'd be any more customers for the night. Hello! How can I help you two?"
As Enrico and Diego approached the bar, they took a seat on the stools. Enrico attempted to keep a cool demeanor, reminding himself to try and not seem suspicious.
"Ah.. We'd like to order.."
Enrico paused, having no idea if there was a menu or anything here. He never checked, they rushed into this idea so suddenly..
".. We'll have… Today's special?"
Enrico took a wild guess, as the man behind the counter glared at him for a moment before immediately perking up again and smiling.
"Of course! Today's special! I'll be right back with your orders."
As the strange looking man walked off and went out of sight, Enrico nudged Diego in the shoulder.
"What do we do now?"
Enrico whispered to him, and Diego looked at him in slight disbelief.
"What do you mean, 'what do we do'?? I thought you had an idea! Out of everybody else I only went with you ‘cus I thought you'd be the smartest!"
"You can't expect me to always come up with ideas on the spot! This plan was so sudden I didn't have time to think of anything!"
“Well then think of something! We need information on the Rokkaka and stuff, right? So let’s ask about that!”
“But that’d be way too sudden! This bartender would definitely suspect something and we’ll be totally screwed over!”
Before Diego could even refute, the man had already come back with two interesting looking desserts.
“Here are your orders, sirs! The special Higashikata Melon Parfait.”
Diego actually looked genuinely impressed and even a little excited when he saw it. Food was food to him, and this looked like a great snack for the night. Enrico on the other hand was a bit more suspicious of the parfait. Diego nudged him and whispered,
“Hey, what’s with the serious look? It’s just a parfait. What, do you want to be seen as suspicious?”
Enrico moved his head to one side, inspecting the glass in which the parfait came in. The bartender seemed to look a little worried. Or was he anxious?
“Is.. Something wrong, sir?”
Enrico stared intently at the glass. Something felt off about this parfait and the bartender. He did something to it, he just knew he had to have tampered with it somehow. But, Enrico feigned ignorance and played it off as if nothing were wrong.
“Oh, no it’s nothing. I just got all worried for no reason..”
As Enrico started to reach for a spoon, he paused. That’s when he noticed it. There was a very faint fingerprint on the spoon, and hand marks on the glass he was given. They were subtle though, they blended in with the glass and metal too well as to not be noticeable. Before Enrico could turn to warn Diego, he had already grabbed his spoon and before either of them knew it, his arm collapsed into unmoving flesh, and soon the rest of his body followed suit. His entire body was deflated like a balloon, turning into nothing more than a puddle of tissue. Enrico didn’t know the capabilities and limits of this new found Stand ability, but what he knew was that the bartender was the user and that he needed to get out of there with the now deflated looking Diego alive. Diego didn’t even know what happened it went by so fast, he was almost left in a state of shock. Enrico grabbed the limp Diego by his shirt collar and immediately started bolting towards the door without a second thought, only to stop in his tracks when he saw that the exit was covered in transparent handprints.
“And to think we almost had you. You’re observant, I can condemn you for that.”
Enrico whipped around to see the bartender, who once had a friendly demeanor now glare at him with killing intent.
“Your disguises were fairly convincing at first, I almost didn’t recognize either of you. The hat was what gave you away, Enrico Pucci.”
Diego let out a scoff. If he could move in his current state, he would have punched Enrico in the arm.
“I told you the hat was a bad idea! We should’ve dyed your hair or something!”
Enrico gave Diego a quick glare before looking back at the bartender who most likely wasn’t a bartender at all.
“We knew you would end up coming here, it was inevitable. So, we decided to corner you.”
The man walked out from behind the counter, and a Stand appeared behind him. Another pair of footsteps could be heard, and from behind a corner came another man.
“I am Damo Tamaki, third in command at Higashikata Co. I’ve heard some intriguing things about you and your group of bumbling idiots, and it seems we’re not the only organization you’ve tried taking down.”
Tamaki’s Stand loomed over him, transparent arms protruding from underneath a cloak.
“The man behind me is a subordinate of mine, Yagiyama Yotsuyu. I called him for backup considering I know how fierce your Stand can be. Whitesnake , I believe that’s what you called it.”
One of the transparent hands coming from Tamaki’s Stand lunged at Enrico, who attempted to jump back only to step right onto a hand print, causing his leg to buckle in on itself and his entire body to turn into the consistency of flubber. He was now a pile of flesh on the ground, unable to lift a finger. Him and Diego we're both completely vulnerable.
"Enrico Pucci and Diego Brando, I will give the both of you two options."
Tamaki reached into his pocket and pulled out a dollar bill, folding it hotdog style until it looked like a little strand.
"You're first option is to surrender. Let up your pursuit of Higashikata and the True Rokakaka and tell us what you know so we may plan accordingly. Your second option, however.."
Tamaki stomped on to Enrico's flat arm, causing him to feel a wave of pain. Tamaki kneeled down, and used the dollar bill like a surgical knife and cut a small slice in Enrico's forearm, causing it to bleed profusely.
"..Is to stay silent, and die right here. If neither of you say anything and decide to keep quiet, I will wipe you off the faces of the Earth along with your gang of misfits. Understand?"
Diego watched Tamaki use the dollar bill to slowly cut at Enrico, torturing him until one of them cracked. Diego wasn't sure if he could bear the sight any longer, but Enrico was quick to speak.
"..Then kill me."
Diego's eyes widened as the words fell out of the priests mouth. Was he insane?
"I'll gladly die if it means you don't get answers. Besides, mine and Diego's deaths will fuel the others needs for vengeance. I know they'll track you down like an endangered species, and won't stop until you're gone."
Diego didn't say anything, but he definitely wasn't agreeing to the idea of death. He couldn't die! Not here, not now, he was too young! Enrico must have lost his mind, gone completely bonkers.
"Then we'll see about that. I'll love to watch their reactions when they see your dead corpses!"
In one fell swoop, Tamaki took the dollar bill and stabbed it into Enrico's side, causing him to let out a yell of pain.
"You think we're the only assassins out to kill you? You and that Funny Valentine made a mark for yourselves both in Italy and here in Morioh, word spreads quick of a priest and a middle-aged man taking down one of the most powerful mafias in Italy. There's bound to be people out for your heads outside of this ordeal. You'll all just be taken out one by one."
Tamaki slowly cut down along Enrico's side and down to his hip. Enrico just gave him a stare, keeping silent. Diego had a fairly blank expression too, looking off elsewhere. Tamaki began to grow frustrated.
"You sons of bitches, giving me the silent treatment now? I can cut the two of you to pieces and throw your parts into the nearest ravine! You may underestimate me, but my Stand is practically unbeatabl-"
A foot was placed on the back of Tamaki's head, pushing on it harshly and stomping his head into the ground. Enrico gave him a sly smirk in his soft state,
"What was that about your Stand being unbeatable?"
Tamaki attempted move his head to look back, laying his eyes on Funny Valentine, who was keeping his head flat on the floor. Behind him, Diavolo and Kira were busy keeping Yotsuyu quiet (and by quiet, I mean taking turns beating on him). Kars had already walked over to pick up Diego and Enrico's flaccid bodies. Valentine hummed a little as he continued to wipe Tamaki's face onto the floor. He kneeled down a little to search through his pockets and pulled out his wallet.
"What the Hell is with you? Don't you understand that even if you take down our organization, there will still be more to come?! More people will pursue after you, you'll have bounties on your heads!"
Valentine looked through Tamaki's wallet, scanning through the contents and ignoring his words.
"Hm.. So you're the owner of the Damo Can Cleaning Service, yet work part time as a janitor at Grape Hills Hospital. I’ll be needing this."
“Are you even listening to me? Your efforts are wasted here! People will track you down, you’ll be seen as more of a threat to others than befo-“
Valentine lifted his foot up only to stomp it back down onto Tamaki’s head, shutting him up.
“Pipe down. Your voice is annoying..”
Valentine stood up and started walking away from Tamaki’s unconscious body, looking through his wallet some more and pulling out a couple of yen bills. Diavolo and Kira had finally gotten done with knocking out a fatally beaten Yotsuyu, while Kars put down a normal, less floppy looking Diego. However, he was still holding onto Enrico, who was bleeding out fairly bad. Valentine walked over to Kira and handed him the yen bills he had stolen from Tamaki’s wallet. Kira gave him a look.
“..What are you doing?”
“Apologizing to you.”
Valentine responded, shoving the money into his hands before reaching into his coat.
“Apologizing? Apologizing for what exactly?”
“For some bubble tea I bought without your permission, and this.”
Valentine pulled out a pistol gun and shot Kira in his right arm, and then in his left leg. Kira crumpled to the ground and grabbed onto his wounded arm, letting out a small yelp of pain.
“GAH! Shit-!.. WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT FOR?!”
Everyone was a little taken aback by Valentine’s actions, and Valentine only stood there nonchalantly as he put the pistol back into his coat.
“Well, I started thinking. You’re not really a good person, right? You haven’t ever paid for your actions, let alone felt any genuine repercussions for them. So, I took it upon myself to make you feel the consequences.”
Valentine kneeled down in front of the wounded Kira,
“We also can’t trust you. Your Stand is dangerous, and it’s powerful enough to take a few of us down with ease. You’ve most likely been thinking about ways of killing us too, planning it out with each passing minute. I want you to gain our trust. More importantly, my trust. I shot you so we’ll be able to get into the Grape Hills Hospital easier, and you’ll be treated as a patient. You and Enrico will be undercover patients and work together to gain more information while I pose as a janitor, also known as Tamaki Damo, and sneak into places most people wouldn’t be able to.”
Valentine held out his hand for Kira,
“I want you to earn mine, and everyone else’s trust by helping us take down Higashikata. Maybe you might learn a thing or two from all of this.”
Kira looked at Valentine’s hand, then at him, then back at his hand and smacked it away.
“Are you fucking insane? You all must have some form of brain damage if the rest of you are willing to go through with this, because I’m going to be the better, saner man here and kindly tell you to fuck off . For the past, what, two days? Yeah, two days, you’ve all been putting me through Hell and back. I can’t take this anymore, I won’t take it anymore. You’re all actual psychopaths. And to think that some of you might’ve been actual functioning members of society at one point absolutely baffles me. All of you can go straight to Hell. I’m not putting up with this bul-“
Kira was cut off by the sound of a cocking gun, and he looked to see Valentine aiming it right at him.
“If you’re going to leave, then I’ll just have to kill you. You’re still a serial killer, you act on impulse. How do we know if you won’t start killing again?”
Kira was face to face with the barrel of a gun for a few long and silent seconds before raising a hand up in defeat and nodding.
“..Fine. Fine, I’ll do it. But I want you to promise me something. Funny Valentine, I want you to promise me that after this is over, you leave me alone. You and everyone else, I want you to leave me alone. I’ll even resist my urge to kill if it means that you all stay away from me. Got it?”
Valentine lowered the gun, and gave him a soft smile that contradicted the actions he had just committed. He reached out his hand and grabbed Kira's.
"Alright, on behalf of myself and everyone else, we promise we'll leave you alone under the condition that you refrain from murder. Until then, we're acquaintances for the time being."
Kira looked hesitant for a moment, but nodded again and held onto Valentine's hand back as he was pulled up from off the ground.
"Right. Only acquaintances."
He mumbled to himself as he lay in the hospital bed, leg hoisted up and in a cast, and an arm missing.
“It’s 7:26.. And that damned doctor still hasn’t fucking shown up!”
In a frustrated fit of rage, he was able to use his free arm to grab the digital clock and throw it across the room, only for it to slide across the floor and be stopped in its tracks by a cane. An old man had already stepped into the room, pushing the clock to the side using his cane and slowly making his way towards his bed. He let out a scoff and leaned his head against his usable arm.
“Took you long enough. Why the Hell did you take so long?”
The old doctor covered his hand with his mouth as he let out a cough, grabbing a stool and taking a seat next to the injured, bed ridden teenager.
“There were… Complications. As a head doctor, I’m a very.. Very, busy man.”
The teen grabbed onto the doctors coat and got close up to his face, anger running through his veins.
“Listen here ‘head doctor’, I’ve been stuck in this god forsaken bed for the past 3 months. I haven’t seen my group of gals show up in weeks, all because of some stupid bullshit motorcycle race I was forced into as part of a bet. Now, I spent almost my entire life savings on this shitty Rokkaka fruit or whatever it’s called and I STILL haven’t seen any changes or had anybody come in to at least give it to me. What the fuck do I have to do in this hospital to get a new arm, or properly treated no less?!”
The doctor was quiet as he took off his small monocle and cleaned them off on his coat, putting it back on and giving the teen a serious look. His expression felt cold, making the teen slightly move back away from him and let go of his coat.
“Fungami Yuya, that’s your name on the files given to me if I’m not mistaken.”
The doctor reached into his coat and pulled out a file with multiple papers in it. He opened the file and pulled out one of the papers.
“This file right here, we don’t give out to the hospital itself.. Any patient that comes into Grape Hills has an immediate blood test taken on them. The blood inside of Stand users are different from regular people, the cell structure is… unique to each one.”
Yuya felt a bead of sweat form on his face.
“You tested positive. It’s rare for us to find a Stand user here, so when we looked at your file is was a bit of a.. Shock. However, we became slightly worried when you paid so much for a Rokkaka, so I was sent here to.. Talk to you.”
Yuya started to get a little frantic, but didn’t want to seem like he was losing his cool at all.
“..S-So what if I’m a Stand user?! I still need to be treated, god dammit! I’ve barely seen any nurses come here either!”
Despite what Yuya was saying, his main question was ‘there’s other people out there with the same abilities as me?’ He didn’t want to know the answer though. If there were others just like him, then that would mean there’s bad people with-.. The thought made him shiver a little. It was kind of scary for him to think about, really. Yuya could acknowledge that he didn’t use his Stand for the most humble of things, but the idea that others could use their Stands for even worse deeds really make him rethink some things.
“Before you’re properly treated, we wanted to ask you of something. Or, make a bit of a deal, really..”
The old doctor put the file away and back inside his coat, and pointed his cane at Yuya.
“But first, what is your Stand? What can it do? Show it to me.”
Yuya was a little scared to try and deny showing it to him. Was this old geezer a Stand user too? Probably if he at least knew what they were. Yuya hesitated only for a moment, before his Stand manifested right next to him and on top of the hospital bed.
“This is Highway Star . I haven’t really used it to its full extent, but from what I know, it can go pretty far from me and chase down things at up to 37 miles per hour as well as steal nutrients from people. It also heightens my sense of smell, so I can basically sniff out anything. But, I’ve only ever used it to cheat in races or steal shit.. Why do you want to know this anyway? I just wanna be treated, man.”
The doctor looked over the purple, humanoid Stand. Highway Star looked weary of the doctor, much like how Yuya was quietly suspicious of the doctor himself. The doctor seemed satisfied with the information he was given, as he stood up from the stool he was sitting on.
“Excellent. Before I leave, I would like to make a.. Bargain.”
“..A Bargain, huh?”
“You see, there are people chasing us down. People who want to.. Take away your Rokkaka. These men will be here at this hospital at any moment now, and we want you to… Dispose of them, before that happens. Your Highway Star can easily make them have a… What do you say, run for their money?”
Yuya scoffed, glaring at the doctor.
“Sounds like a you problem. What’s in it for me?”
The doctor reached into his coat one last time and pulled out a Rokkaka fruit. It was only the size of the palm of his hand, but the fruit had exactly three spikes on it.
“Three spikes… The mark of a basic Rokkaka fruit. It’s strong enough to bring back your missing arm, and return you to full health with a small price. In exchange for your services.. Fungami Yuya, we will give you this Rokkaka for free and pay for your stay here at Grape Hills Hospital. One thing we ask of you, however, is for you to consider joining our.. Organization. Higashikata Co. You’re young, Fungami. 16, 17 years old right? By joining our organization, your life will be entirely set up for you, and you’ll barely need to lift a finger.”
The doctor put the Rokkaka back into his coat, and began to walk out of the room. Yuya’s eyes darted around the room for a moment, before he gulped hard.
“Alright. Okay, I’ll do it. I’ll take them out, just give me a name. But, before I do anything, I need to ask a question. Well, two questions to be exact.”
The doctor looked back at him, halfway out of the room.
“..Who are you? What do you mean by ‘we’?”
The doctor tipped his hat over his face as he began to turn away.
"Who I may or may not be is not important.. And by 'we', did you think that I worked alone?"
The old man let out a wheezy chuckle, leaving the room as he spoke a few last words.
"My title as 'head doctor' is merely a coverup. The real head doctor has never shown his face, because he has no need to. But.. I can't tell you any more. If I did… It would be fairly disastrous for you. All you need to know is that your main target is Enrico Pucci."
The 'head doctor' walked out of the room, the sound of his cane slowly tap-tapping away as he disappeared out of sight and out of sound. Yuya gulped once more, and shared a look with his Stand.
"..Alright, Highway Star . Do your think, sniff out an Enrico Pucci."
And with that, his Stand separated its body parts and turned into flat pairs of feet, sniffing around for a moment before escaping out a nearby open window. Yuya let out a huff, looking at his missing arm.
"This better be fucking worth it."
The group was currently desperately trying to find a vehicle of sorts in an attempt to get to the hospital quickly. Luckily, they didn’t have to worry too much since Valentine had found a pair of car keys in Tamaki’s wallet that he had stolen, and with the click of a button they could hear the beep of a car and headlights from nearby. Once they got there, Diavolo started shoving Kira into the front drivers seat.
“Get in, you’re driving us to the hospital.”
“What? Why?! I still have two bullet wounds in me.”
“Walk it off. Besides, I don’t have a legal license, Enrico is currently bleeding out harder than you, Kars doesn’t even know what a car is, and the only thing Diego and Valentine have ever driven were probably horse drawn carriages. We’re also in Japan, there’s no chance I’ll be abiding by the traffic laws here.”
He shoved Kira once more, and started getting into the back seat.
“Now hurry it up, there isn’t a lot of time.”
Kira huffed and got into the car, realizing how cramped it was in this small car. Valentine sat with him up in the front seat, as Kira pulled out of the parking spot the car was in and zoomed down the street.
Shortly after they had left, however, Highway Star was soon on their trail after sniffing out the scent of Enrico’s blood that had dripped onto the pavement, beginning its pursuit.
Valentine had already pulled out a map of Morioh from out of his pink coat, telling Kira where to go and the directions to Grape Hills Hospital.
“So.. You take a right here.. Then.. Hm..”
“Take a right where? You have to tell me what landmarks and places, I can’t look at the map and know what you’re talking about.”
“I’m only looking at the pictures on the map though.. I can’t really tell you since I don’t know any Japanese.”
The car eventually stopped at a red light, and Kira let out a groan.
“Then could you describe where it is I need to turn? I can’t have you us getting lost in this situation.”
Valentine turned over the map, tilting his head to one side as he observed it. He was looking intently at a specific place on the map.
“Uh.. Er.. Hmm… Take a right at the, ah.. Big rock?”
Kira just looked at him, raising an eyebrow. Valentine puffed his cheeks and pouted.
“I’m not good at describing things, okay?! It’s really hard for me to think straight under so much pressure..”
Kira turned back to look at the front of the car, took a deep breath, reeled his head back, and furiously slammed his head into the steering wheel a few times, causing the car to beep each time his head made a touchdown onto the wheel itself. After laying his head on the horn for a few seconds after having had that slight breakdown, he looked back up.
“You’re all going to give me an aneurysm before we even make it to the hospital, I swear.”
Kira took a peek at his rear view mirror, wanting to check and make sure no other cars were around to have seen him have that mini breakdown earlier. To his luck, there wasn’t. However, there was something else he saw approaching from the darkness of the road. It was fast, and it definitely wasn’t human. At first, he thought maybe it was a figment of his imagination. Perhaps he was losing too much blood, or the rest of these idiots were rubbing off on him. But, as this thing drew closer, he realized it was something entirely different. Something more sinister. However, before he could even get a good look at it, it ran behind something and disappeared. Kira thought he was going insane. Was he finally losing his mind? Was that just a figment of his imagination, or was it real? Before he could really try to think about it more, the light turned green and he started driving again. It was better for him not to really think about what he saw, though. It would just stress him, he was already stressed enough as it was anyway. As he continued driving and Valentine attempted to give Kira somewhat decent directions, their conversation was cut off by Diego chiming in to say something slightly alarming.
“Does anybody else hear that?”
The car was silent as everybody started to look around. Everyone attempted to figure out what it was that Diego might’ve been hearing, the eerie silence putting them all off. Kira tried to shrug it off,
“It must’ve just been in your head. If you heard something, we would’ve all heard it with yo-“
The sound of a slam on the driver side window, as Kira whipped his head around to see flat, dismembered feet crawling up the side of the car and attempting to burst inside. The feet started appearing on Valentine’s side as well, and then near the back end of the car, attempting to break through the windows. Kira didn’t wait another moment before putting the pedal to the metal and flooring it down the street.
“What the Hell?! How could there be another Stand user on our asses already?! This is ridiculous!”
Diavolo yelled out, watching as the dismembered feet gradually started flying off the car. There were still a few stragglers, however. Kira took a sharp and sudden turn at a random corner, attempting to shake them off.
“Wh- Kira! This isn’t the right way to the hospital!”
Valentine fumbled with the map in his hands, desperately trying to figure out where they were going now.
“I’m making a detour. Valentine, start telling me to turn at random points until we make it.”
Valentine gulped, scanning over the map. There was a sound of cracking glass, the feet were slowly but surely breaking down the windows.
“Hurry up and tell me where to turn! The Stand’s breaking at the windows, it’ll get inside at any minute!”
Valentine stuttered, mumbling something to himself.
Kira yelled, panicked, the window on his side having almost completely shattered as the Stand began making its way inside the car. Valentine eventually ripped the map and threw it to the side, leaning over and grabbing onto the steering wheel, causing the car to start swerving.
“You said you wanted a detour? Then I’ll show you a proper detour!”
Valentine forced the steering wheel to its right, causing the car to turn a corner a little too sharply and tilt over until it flew off the road and spun a few times, before landing itself in a ditch. The Stand had flown off of the car due to the devastating landing, but the car itself was in terrible condition laying upside down. The feet sniffed around a bit, before coming together and taking on a more humanoid shape. The Stand continued to sniff, climbing down into the ditch and inspecting the car wreck. It eventually made its way near the windows, looking down and inside of the car.
There was nobody inside of it, the car was completely empty. The Stand continued to sniff, but it couldn’t find any signs of life at all. It stood up from off the ground, starting to climb out of the ditch as it sniffed the air. It looked around for a moment, before looking in the direction that leads to the Grape Hills Hospital. The Stand glared for a moment, before disassembling and turning back into the flat feet and continuing it’s pursuit. Highway Star knew that its target wasn’t yet finished off, and it was going to continue until its goal was completed.
Apologies if this chapter seems off. It's a challenge to describe scenes like this, especially in written form. Luckily, however, I'm going to be working on perhaps adapting this fanfic into a fanmade doujin-like comic series. It's not entirely set in stone, but I'm going to try my best. I will update you all when (and if) I post it.
Chapter 60: Highway Star (Part 2)
Well, the idea of a comic adaptation of this fanfic was a bit of a failure. But, we’re nearing the end for the Rokkaka arc! Though, the end of this fanfic still is a long way away.
They were all running for their lives now. The injuries a few of them sustained from the car crash were surprisingly minimal, but still damaging. Kars was the only one who seemed unscathed, continuing to hold onto Enrico’s limp body as he ran just a little faster than the others. Valentine was only able to help them all escape using D4C at the last second, which was fairly lucky despite being so risky. Kira was visibly shaken. Who wouldn’t be?
“That… That was fucking insane . You really are out of your mind.”
Kira looked at Valentine, almost a little fear in his eyes. Valentine scared him a little. The lengths that man was willing to go through with a plan, whether it failed or not, was scary. The way how Valentine, without even a bit of hesitation, shot Kira twice just for a plan, risking his safety for his own benefit. Willingly risked all of their lives by crashing a car into the side of the road and almost barely helping them make it out alive at the last second. As they ran, view of the hospital came into view.
“I may be insane, but I still helped us didn’t I?”
Valentine finally responded, looking at Kira for a split second and looking away. But.. Kira could’ve sworn he saw something. A smile? Did Valentine give Kira the faintest, most sinister smile? Was Valentine trying to scare Kira into submission? What kind of mind games was he playing? Kira wouldn’t be toyed with like this! No! He was the one on top, he was the one others were to stay away from and fear in one way or another, Kira wasn’t supposed to be scared by a man who dressed like a drag queen. This was preposterous! Ridiculous even! He, Yoshikage Kira, couldn’t have been scared into submission! God, just thinking about it made his head hurt and a distinct rage boil up inside of him. He felt close to snapping, so damn close. Luckily, he was able to stop thinking about it once the group barged into the hospital doors, getting stares from patients and visitors, along with a few from nurses and doctors. It was either because of the way they were dressed, or the injuries they had sustained. Either way, it was clear they all needed help both mentally and physically. Definitely mentally . A few of the nurses asked if they had any internal injuries, while Enrico and Kira were both escorted and taken away to be properly taken care of. Kira noted that the nurse who was helping him had very pretty hands. They looked soft and well kept, and looked painted too. It was a shame he couldn’t do anything about them though. Not yet at least. Taking his mind off of it, he looked behind himself to glance at the others, who were all being held back by doctors and nurses. Valentine looked the most annoyed about it. But, Kira couldn’t help but notice something behind the clear, slide open double doors of the hospital entrance. There was something moving there.
No. It couldn’t have been.. Was it? That Stand. The Stand that caused Valentine to crash their (stolen) car. It was right there at the door, looking for them. But it disappeared too quick, it moved away and out of sight. How was it here? How could it have followed them all the way here? Did this mean the user was in the hospital with them? There was no way. This meant they were all sitting ducks, stuck in this hospital for god knows how long with no way to outrun this Stand. What was he gonna do now? He can't deal with this. He can't handle this. He prayed that what he saw was a trick of the eye, or he swore that there would be Hell to pay.
It felt like it was shorter, but only 40 or so minutes had passed since they left that fruit parlor. It was 8:03 and here Yoshikage Kira was, sitting on a hospital bed wearing a simple hospital gown. His right arm and left leg was bandaged up, and there was another, bigger bandage that wrapped around his back and waist to support the injuries given to him due to an earlier, rock related situation. This was embarrassing, he'll admit. What would he tell his co-workers? They would eye him down for months because of this. The thought gave him chills, the attention he would gain sounded like a nightmare. Though, He was slightly weirded out as to why the doctors had to extract blood from him. What for? He didn't know. Perhaps it was to check for disease? To be honest, he wouldn't be surprised if he had one considering the rats that hung around him constantly. Those fucking creatures... Valentine especially. Who did he think he was, the president of the United States? As if. That Valentine was delusional, absolutely deranged. Besides that, he was at a current loss. Valentine, that fucking Valentine. He didn't bother to elaborate on his plan, what was he supposed to do now? He was stuck here. What if that Stand came after him? Kira sat at the side of the hospital bed, staring at his hands. He hadn’t even noticed until now, but his nails had grown a surprisingly long length. He practically had claws at this point. He huffed, and started biting his nails. It was a terrible habit, and he knew this. But what else was he to do? It was all he could do to calm himself down, to satiate his growing anger and think about what he might be able to do to get out of this situation. Before he could even think about it more, his thoughts were cut off by the sound of his hospital room’s door opening, and someone whispering to gain his attention.
Kira looked up, landing his sight on a blond janitor peeking out from behind the door, gesturing for him. Kira was immediately suspicious, before realizing who it was.
“..Oh dear God.”
He let out a groan. It was none other than Funny Valentine, disguised as a janitor. He begrudgingly got up from the bed and followed Valentine out the door. He looked around for a moment before closing the door, and then looked at Kira and smiled a little, tipping his little janitor hat. He looked happy wearing this outfit.
“How do I look? I bet you didn’t recognize me at first, did you?”
Kira just rolled his eyes and looked around for a moment,
“I could care less about how you look. My main concerns right now are how you even managed to get past the nurses, and what we should do now.”
Valentine opened his mouth to say something, but immediately closed it and thought on it for a bit as he crossed his arms.
“Getting past the nurses was easy. Everyone else was distracting them so I could slip through, knock out a janitor, steal his outfit and slip right past everyone impersonating Tamaki Damo.”
Kira just blinked before shaking his head. He wasn’t sure what else he expected from this man, using blunt force. Valentine continued to speak,
“Though, now that we’re here, I’m really not sure entirely where to go. Pucci might’ve had a plan by now, but he’s in a different room somewhere.. I don’t know where they took him.”
Valentine’s expression changed into one of worry. Kira scoffed at it. Why would he need to be worried or afraid? What, did he care for Enrico or something? What reason would he have to care for him, let alone the others? Kira just didn’t get it, and he probably never would. What point was there to have others to care for? To have friends? They were going to die and drift away from you anyway, so why bother putting so much time into a useless relationship? More reasons why Yoshikage Kira preferred severed hands over any kind of human contact and relationship. While he silently ranted to himself in his head, a noise could be heard. The noise resembled that of… Shuffling. The pitter-pattering noise of feet stomping along, and it was getting louder. Closer, even. Valentine noticed it too, as the two backed up towards each other, keeping an eye out for where the noise could have been coming from. Kira looked around, just a little frantically. He really hoped whatever they were hearing were just some weird vent noises, but unsurprisingly it wasn’t the case. As he looked up, he spotted something coming out from a vent.
Kira immediately started shoving Valentine, both forward and out of his way. Valentine was confused before he turned to see what was making its way out of the vent. It was the Stand that was pursuing them earlier, those feet. Christ, Valentine really wondered what kind of freak would have a Stand like this. Of all the things that a Stand could be, and this one had to be automatic feet. Valentine didn’t even know what its ability even was, but there was no way in Hell that he’d stay around long enough to find out. He and Kira ran through the hospital hallways, the Stand in hot pursuit of them as bystanders watched them zoom by, giving them stares as if they were crazy. At this point, Kira was convinced he was.
“How did it find us? I thought we lost it in the car crash!”
“It’s an automatic Stand. No matter how far we go, it’ll keep coming for us!”
The two were in a tight spot now. No matter what they threw in front of its path, it avoided it and continued to pursue them. Eventually, the two had run themselves into a corner, into a hallway that ended at a door. There was a sign on the door that read “STAFF ONLY” in big writing, but Valentine and Kira didn’t care to read it. Valentine struggled to open the door so they could possibly hide inside of it to get away, but it was locked. Kira pushed him to the side harshly, summoning Killer Queen , using it to touch the door handle. Kira detonated the handle, and blew the door open with a small explosion. Him and Valentine rushed inside and shut the door, pressing their bodies against it as the Stand struggled to break it through. Slam after slam, the Stand gradually grew more tired and left, the sound of heavy stomping slowly disappearing into the silence of the hospital. Valentine was first to move away from the door, inspecting the room they had just walked into. Kira had slumped against it, panting heavily. The panic and adrenaline was taking its toll on him slowly. There was a tap on his shoulder, and he barely even glanced over at Valentine.
“I think it was a good thing that we were chased into this room.”
Kira looked at Valentine like he was a madman.
“A.. A good thing ?! We could have died! We could have-“
Valentine cut him off by grabbing his shoulders and shoving him further into the room to have him get a good look. Kira looked around, and realized the importance of this room. It wasn’t even a hospital room at this point, it was more of a laboratory. On the left of the room, there were rows of plants in the process of growing (some having already grown and bearing fruit). Anyone could recognize the plants as Rokkaka, the fruit being engraved into Kira’s mind at this point. On the right, there were jars and capsules, as well as a carriable dog cage on the floor. In the very back of the room, there was a desk with a few folders scattered about sloppily. Kira shrugged Valentine’s hands off his shoulders and moved towards the desk. At a closer look, there was a little name plaque on the desk that read “Dr. Tom”. The chair at the end of the desk had books stacked on top of it, almost like this Tom was too short to sit on the chair normally. Next to the sloppily laid out folders, there was a little house made of LEGO on the desk. What an odd thing for a doctor to have, perhaps it was a memento? He could care less about it though, he was more focused on the folders. He picked the one labeled “Patients to take note of” written in that confusing doctor handwriting that looked like a five year old scribbled it out randomly. Opening it, he read the first paper that seemed important. It described the name, birth date, age, gender, and any other information of the patient.
The name of this patient read ‘Pucci, Enrico’. Immediate alarms set off in his head. He took out Enrico’s file, and the one directly after that was Kira’s file. ‘Name: Kira, Yoshikage’. He read through Enrico’s file a bit more, curious as to how much info that was on here. He skimmed through a few tedious things, before reading something that shook him to the core. ‘About Patient: Is in fact a Stand user. Stand’s name is Whitesnake. Ability currently unknown, but it’s good to be cautious. Currently held in intensive care under Dr. Wu Tomoki’s eye. Refer to Dr. Wu Tomoki as to what to do with the patient in question. ’ Kira felt a lump in his throat, cautiously looking at his patient file. ‘About Patient: Is in fact a Stand user. Stand name and ability unknown, best to be exterminated of immediately as their prescience is not of much importance. Currently residing in room… ’ Kira had to stop reading, putting the files back onto the desk, and preparing to put them into the folder he found them in. Before doing so however, he spotted a third file inside of it. His curiosity was piqued as he took it out and read through it. ‘ Name: Fungami, Yuya | Age: 17 | Gender: Male ’. Kira skimmed through a good bit of the file, making his way to the About Patient section. ‘About Patient: Is in fact a Stand user. Stand’s name is Highway Star, it’s ability is to endlessly pursue a target and suck out its nutrients. It can move up to 37 mph and has an incredible sense of smell. Currently residing in room 337. ’ Next to the description in red pen, there was a little mark. As if the person who saw this was taking note of the patient. Either way, Kira felt a bit of happiness build up inside of him. They had found their perpetrator, Yuya Fungami. He could care less if this kid was only 17, he swore on his life he was going to beat the shit out of him. Kira kept the paper and turned to show it to Valentine, but stopped when he saw the expression on Valentine’s face, ducked in front of the dog cage with his hand in front of it. Something was poking out of the bars of the cage, but Kira couldn’t see it from the angle he was at. He moved behind Valentine to look inside, and the sight was truly something. It was a small dog, brown with a white stomach, but half of its body was entirely stone. It’s mouth was covered over with stone, so it couldn’t even make a noise. It looked like it was in pain, near the brink of death. Valentine’s expression really made the sight hard to look at. It looked as if he was pondering over something, remembering something from his past while mourning over something as well. His expression was sympathetic not for himself, but for the dog near the brink of death in front of him, sticking its limp usable paw out of the cage, reaching for Valentine’s hand, silently pleading for some comfort before it passed on. Valentine turned to look at Kira, he looked like a memory of a long gone past had come back to him and was overwhelming him, almost about to cry. He gave a pained smile, standing up and pointing at the paper Kira was holding.
“Ah.. What’s that? It’s probably something important, right?”
Kira looked over Valentine’s expression. He looked desperate to ignore the dying dog in the cage and repress the memory that had just overcome him. Kira wasn’t going to push into Valentine’s personal problems anyway, it wasn’t his business. So, he ignored it and continued the conversation as if he didn’t see anything. Kira nodded,
“I found the Stand user who’s been pursuing us. He’s in the hospital as it turns out, right in room 337. We should hurry up and find him before his Stand comes after us. Apparently it’s called Highway Star . Surprisingly accurate for a Stand made up of feet..”
He had already started walking towards the door, but Valentine was practically stuck in place, his attention fixated on the dog near death. He looked heartbroken over it, and Kira didn’t understand why.
“Why are you just standing there? Hurry it up, we have a Stand user to find.”
Kira knew he sounded pushy, but really didn’t care. He just wanted to get this over and done with, as well as gain his revenge on this Yuya before he beats the everloving crap out of this Higashikata. Valentine looked at Kira, glanced at the dog, and then fully turned towards Kira and followed him.
“Yeah, sorry. Let’s get a move on.”
Valentine moved in front of Kira and slightly cracked open the door, looking around for a bit before motioning for Kira. They both left the room and began making their way to room 337.
Yuya looked over the Rokkaka on the tray in front of him as he sat on the side of the hospital bed. A doctor had brought it to him, telling him that he did what was needed of him and just leaving. Yuya figured that meant he successfully took out Enrico Pucci. But that begged the question, where was Highway Star ? If his target was gone, it should be back here by now. Yuya looked at his missing arm, and then at the Rokkaka. He pondered over his actions heavily. Did he do the right thing? Once he ate this fruit, he’d be a part of this Higashikata business for life. Did he even kill the right guy? What if it was some random civilian? He picked up the Rokkaka with his usable hand. Maybe one bite wouldn’t hurt? That one head doctor told him he’d be set for life if he joined this business, so maybe it wouldn’t be so bad? He gulped, hesitating before slowly bringing the fruit to his mouth. Just one bite. Just one bite. Just one bi-
“ YOU. ”
Yuya jumped in surprise, the fruit falling out of his hand and onto the floor as he looked over at the door. Two men stood there, the door wide open. They were both blond, one was in a janitor outfit and was the tallest, and the other in a hospital gown. The shorter of the two looked absolutely pissed as he took a step forward.
“Fungami Yuya. Yuya Fungami. You-.. You son of a bitch..”
The man looked out of breath, as if he had sprinted all the way here. Yuya moved back.
“W-What the Hell?! Who are you? How do you know my name?”
The man took another step towards him
“Hey! Stay back! I’m warnin’ you man!”
Yuya pushed himself up against the wall on his bed, but the man only continued to get closer.
“I said stay back! Y-You don’t want any trouble!”
The man immediately ran towards Yuya and grabbed onto his shirt collar harshly, almost choking the poor kid as he reeled back, prepared to completely beat the shit of him.
“You complete fucking cretin, you absolute bumbling idiot. Did you truly think it’d be a good idea to fuck with me, Kira Yoshikage? You have no idea who you were messing with, and you’re going to pay for making it even harder on me and my quiet lifestyle. You’re absolute dead meat kid, you absolute fucking-“
“That’s… quite enough.”
Both Kira and Yuya turned to look at who had interrupted them, Yuya’s eyes went wide when recognizing who it was. Kira didn’t know who this old geezer thought he was. He slowly walked into the room, not seeming to really notice Valentine or care that he was there, most likely mistaking him for an actual janitor.
“I believe that you are.. Looking for a head doctor, more specifically a… Higashikata.”
Kira perked up, immediately moving away from Yuya and choosing his new target.
“Higashikata? Did you say Higashikata?”
The old man nodded and started turning away,
“Yes. Higashikata wants.. To talk to you.”
Kira blinked a few times, visibly suspicious of this old man. The man looked at him and simply smiled.
“You’re worried… Yes? You think I might backstab or betray you, is that it?”
Kira didn’t respond, so the old man took it as a yes.
“I am Satoru Akefu.. Second in command, and underboss of Higashikata-san. I am his eyes, and his ears. However… he wishes to meet you, Kira Yoshikage, in person. It appears he sees great potential in you.”
Satoru turned and began to walk out the room.
“Please, follow me Yoshikage. I believe you’ll find Higashikata-san is quite a… Interesting man.”
Kira looked at Valentine who had been standing in the doorway watching the entire encounter go down. He shrugged and motioned for Kira to follow this Satoru. Kira was reluctant, but followed Satoru anyway. Valentine watched them both slowly walk away, and Valentine tried to follow him. However, when Valentine attempted to pursue them, he tripped over a ‘Caution! Wet floor’ sign and fell flat on his face. Both Satoru and Kira turned around.
“Oh.. I figured you weren’t a normal janitor. I’m sorry, but only Yoshikage can follow me. Anyone else who tries to do so will be.. Disposed of, by my Stand. As long as you have the thought of coming after me, my Stand will protect me.”
Valentine got up from the ground and watched Satoru turn away and start walking again. Kira just stared at Valentine, who nodded at him. Kira just stared at him for a moment, then clenched his fists and nodded back before turning to continue following Satoru.
Yoshikage Kira had made a promise, that he was going to help take down Higashikata and save Morioh from the Rokkaka’s tyranny. Funny Valentine had made a promise to then give Kira’s quiet life back to him. Both of them were keeping their promises. Valentine knew, deep down, that Kira was a man of honesty and peace. He could see the good in Kira, and he knew that Kira would keep to his promise even if it meant risking his life for it.
Chapter 61: I'm A Speed King, You Go To Hear Me Sing (Part 1)
Satoru had led Kira all the way towards the far end of the hospital, which looked fairly empty compared to everywhere else. The hallways were dark occasionally, seemed dusty and untouched in a lot of places. He could have sworn he saw a cobweb or two. It was as if this part of the hospital was completely abandoned. He was eventually taken to two double doors at the end of a slightly murky looking hallway. The doors looked polished, contradicting the scenery around it. There were no windows on the doors, and the handles resembled that of.. Beetles? They were definitely a bug of sorts. He wasn’t sure if he even wanted to touch the handles, afraid they would come alive. The old man, Satoru, stopped at a certain point in the hallway, gesturing for Kira to continue moving forward.
“This is.. As far as I can go. I was not permitted access to Higashikata-san’s office. He’s stingy with who can enter and.. Leave.”
Kira nodded and hesitantly approached the double doors. He stared at the beetle-shaped handles for a moment, before wearily grabbing onto one and turning the handle. His heart was pumping. This was it, he was going to face the leading cause that disrupted his quiet life. He was going to finish this, but he had to keep his cool. Just for a little longer. Just hold back the anger, only for a little while longer. He took a deep breath and opened the door, it creaked loudly and the light from the room almost blinded him a little. When he got a better look, the door shut quickly behind him. The room was nothing of what he expected from this Higashikata. It was bright, the walls were white with what looked to be gold colored lining running along the edges of the room. Along the walls, there were various things. On the left, there were cages and glasses containing various types of.. Bugs. Beetles, in specific. The containers lined the wall, along with a few containing plants and what looked to be food for the insects. On the right were Rokkaka plants and viles full of liquid he couldn’t determine. The plants looked.. Off. Unlike the fruit he usually saw being thrown around. Some were discolored, disheveled, or simply rotted. It looked as if they had been experimented on with various things. In the middle of the room near the back was a desk, and behind the desk was a swivel chair turned away from Kira and facing the window. The window showcased a nice view of Morioh even in the dark of night, building lights and street lamps sticking out among the darkness. Kira focused his attention back onto the desk. There was a plaque there with the name ‘Higashikata’ engraved onto it. His focus shifted quickly when he heard light humming coming from the swivel chair behind the desk, as it swerved back and forth slightly.
”Come with me..~ While the moon is on the sea..~”
Singing came from where the swivel chair was, as it continued to swerve.
“The night is young, and so are we~.”
The chair turned all the way around, and the person Kira saw was not who he expected Higashikata to be.
”Do you know that song? Blue Hawaii , by Elvis Presley? I first heard it when I was young, I would hear my mom sing it at times. Eventually it got stuck in my head, now I find myself singing it!”
He let out a little laugh and got up from the swivel chair, moving out from behind his desk and heading towards the glass containers full of beetles that were covering most of the wall on his left. Kira wasn’t sure if this guy was serious. It couldn’t have been Higashikata. He looked so oddly young, maybe in his twenties? He couldn’t tell. His hair was green, swept over to one side and kept in place with a yellow hair clip, the side of his head was shaved as well with what looked to be spiked bumps jutting out from it. He donned bright blue lipstick, which contradicted with the rest of his outfit and almost distracted Kira from the lines (scars?) going down his eyes. The black hoodie he wore underneath his white, yellow dotted suit was cut to such a point where it showed just the underside of his pecs. Kira almost didn’t spot the thin gold chain around his neck as well, which complimented his eccentric looking design. There was no way this erratic looking man was Higashikata.
“You seem a little speechless, you haven’t spoken a word since you entered. I would’ve expected maybe a ‘who are you’ or a ‘why am I here’, but not a peep from you. How strange.”
The man, who Kira assumed might’ve been Higashikata, seemed to have started admiring the exotic insects and beetles he’s had kept in these containers.
“You’re Kira Yoshikage, correct?..”
He only received silence in return.
“Oh, who am I kidding? Of course you’re him. You’re the only man I’ve ever met who looks kind of like David Bowie. You know him, right? David Bowie, the star man? He made such wonderful music. I’d be surprised if you didn’t know him.”
There was only a deep silence in the room, Kira didn’t speak a word. He didn’t need to. He was going to take out this man, he didn’t need to start a conversation with someone he was about to put ten feet under. Higashikata looked at him and laughed when he saw Kira’s expression.
“What a scary face you’re giving me! Come on now, I’m not that bad of a guy. Why don’t you show me your Stand? If you do that, I’ll agree to tell you my full name and explain a few things. Promise.”
Kira looked over Higashikata, that overly friendly smile he was being given making him suspicious. But, at this point he’ll do whatever he can to gain information and possibly find weaknesses in Higashikata.
“... Killer Queen .”
And just like that, with its red eyes giving a piercing glare, Killer Queen manifested next to Kira. Its expression was just as menacing and cold as Kira’s.
“Oh, is that its name? Killer Queen .. Like the song, right? Dynamite with a laser beam, guaranteed to blow your mind~.”
He hummed a little bit, turning away from Kira and opening one of the many glass cages containing different kinds of beetles and insects, reaching inside and pulling out a big stag beetle, willingly letting it crawl into his palm. Kira couldn’t understand how people could like bugs, let alone an insect such as a stag beetle. They weren’t pretty, and they were nuisances. They didn’t contribute to anything, they just existed.
“Anyway, I’m a man of honesty, so I must keep my promise.”
Higashikata watched the stag beetle roam around his hand, even using a finger to ‘pet’ it, if you could even pet something like a stag beetle.
“My name is Higashikata Jobin, owner of Higashikata Co. You must’ve been surprised to see someone like me in charge, right? I’m only 32 years old, but it feels great being such a big figure so young.”
Kira was a little surprised by that. 32? That was a year younger than Kira, yet this guy looked like he was barely past 20. Higashikata, or Jobin, started walking over to where his odd looking Rokkaka fruit were.
“You know, Higashikata Co wasn’t always mine. My father, Higashikata Norisuke, was the original owner of this company. It was a fruit business to start with, and our fruit parlor was really popular back in the day. It was striving. Our fruits were known to be some of the freshest out there, and Higashikata Co was dominating the market.”
Jobin walked past the Rokkaka and opened a door that was slightly obscured by paint, grabbing what looked to be a foldable table from it with one hand, while still keeping a good eye on the stag beetle in the other.
“But, we didn’t strive for very long. Other companies and businesses began to come into play, some considered better than ours. Higashikata Co was soon to fall into obscurity, and my father was getting worried and sick. He was old, he could only do so much to handle the business. It didn’t make it any better that all the while my mother had already passed away, and we were still mourning.”
Jobin set up the foldable table in the middle of the room, walking back towards the obscured door and pulling more things out of it. Kira couldn’t properly identify what they were.
“I tried to tell my father that I could take over the business, that I could make it strive again. But time and time again he refused, he insisted it was just how things were and that we should let the business do its thing over time. I grew more and more frustrated with him, and as if the universe were in my favor, he fell deathly ill with an.. Obscure disease. The disease was turning him to stone, making his body as hard as a rock. He eventually succumbed to it, but not before he gave me complete ownership over the company. I eventually realized that this rock disease was more widespread in Japan than I had originally thought it was, and I took that as a chance to capitalize on it. But you might be wondering, how could I capitalize on a disease? It seems so heartless, so money and power hungry. And you’d be right, I’m all of those things.”
Jobin placed what looked to be a little sumo arena onto the foldable table, along with brushes and a glue bottle. What was this man doing?
“My mother always told me that power is what’s important in the world. If you can’t hold power over something, over someone, then what are you? What do you contribute? What do you mean to the world? Power… Means a lot to me. It means more than anything else, and I wish to be the strongest. I want to hold the biggest grip onto the world, and to do that I needed something revolutionary. Something people will desire and give everything for. That was when I met these ‘Rock Humans’, a species that had strived for millions of years. These Rock Humans knew of a fruit called the Rokkaka, a fruit that could give one thing in exchange for another. I let these Rock Humans work for me in exchange for the production of Rokkaka, and the money and fame I gained from it was extraordinary. People believed these Rokkaka could cure diseases, water their crops, the most obscure things you could think of. My reign was growing. However, I eventually discovered something even stronger than the Rokkaka. I deemed it the True Rokakaka.”
Jobin placed the stag beetle he was holding onto the little arena, and walked back to the door and grabbed two foldable chairs, beginning to place them on the opposite ends of the table.
“The True Rokakaka looks much like a regular Rokkaka, however, unlike usual Rokkaka it has five points on each side instead of three. The True Rokakaka can also perform an even stronger exchange between two consenting parties, such as.. Trading a life for a life. Curing this rock disease I mentioned earlier. But, more importantly, this True Rokakaka is so strong that it can subsequently fuse two consenting parties into one person. For years, I had been searching for the True Rokakaka in order to gain more power, maybe even fuse myself with someone else and become physically stronger. But, the True Rokakaka has fallen out of my grasp time and time again. So I’ve begun trying to make my own True Rokakaka’s as you can see, but it seems there’s only one True Rokakaka to ever have existed naturally. All of the man made Rokakaka that I’ve been making and testing on subjects who have been affected by this rock disease rejected the fruit. The body seems to deny any and all Rokkaka that I’ve tampered with so far. But, you’re wondering why I’m telling you this, correct? You just want to know why you’re here, I presume?”
Jobin pulled out a chair on one end of the table, motioning for Kira to take a seat.
“Come on, sit. Make yourself comfortable while I’m at it.”
Kira could see in Jobin’s malicious and feigned smile that he wasn’t going to continue speaking unless he sat, so he did as he was asked and moved to sit down.
“Anyway, I’m telling you all this because I’m a man who wants to live a very comfortable life. A life in power, where I can sit back and watch others underneath me do the dirty work while I reign supreme. However.. I can’t live comfortably when I have little ants trying to burst into my home. It’s hard for me to grow in power when you and your friends are my biggest obstacles trying to stop me. That’s why I want to dispose of them.”
Jobin walked back to the rest of the beetles and their containers, reaching into one and gently picking up what looked to be a.. Golden stag beetle? It was tinted gold, at least.
“But I enjoy putting up a fair fight, making deals, and raising the stakes in situations. What’s the fun in a one sided duel? That’s why I like insects, beetles in specific. They’re territorial, but always put up a fair fight no matter what. The stakes are always high in the insect world.. So, Yoshikage, I’m going to make a deal with you.”
Jobin motioned towards the makeshift arena on the table Kira was sitting at, as he picked up a separate container near the other insects that contained what looked to be a wasp.
“Now, the best way to raise the stakes in this is to do something obscure, yes? So how about we have a beetle battle? I mentioned how territorial beetles can be, so having them duel would truly amp everything up."
Jobin opened the container holding the wasp, and placed the golden tinted stag beetle inside of it.
"You know, speaking of beetles, usually when they-"
"Get to the point."
Jobin perked up, turning his head to Kira immediately.
"Hurry up and get to the point. Why am I here, what deal do you want to make?"
There was a bit of silence, but eventually Jobin sighed and rolled his eyes.
"Fine I guess. I thought maybe you'd want a bit of conversation but-... Whatever."
Jobin looked inside the container with the beetle and wasp, tilting it slightly in an attempt to have one of the insects aggravate the other. Eventually, the beetle engaged with the wasp.
"So, about the deal.. You have some options available. You can either join me now and I'll let your friends go scott free, or you can face me in a beetle fight. If you win, I stop my Rokakaka and Rokkaka research and go back to how this company once was, and you'll all be allowed to leave alive. If you lose, I kill you and your friends here in this hospital as I can't trust outsiders with all the information I just gave you. Does that sound reasonable?"
Jobin looked up from the glass container he was holding and right at Kira, trying to read his blank expression. Kira tilted his head to one side, pondering over it.
"If I win this, you'll leave me alone as well. I want you to discard any information you have of me and the others. Pretend we were never even here."
"..I can do that, I'll have no need for that information soon enough anyway."
"Then you have a deal."
Jobin gave a smile, as he looked back at the container and watched the beetle drag the wasp into a headlock between its pincers as the wasp struggled to break free.
" Perfect . You have yourself a deal."
The beetle squeezed its pincers around the wasps neck, holding it in place as its neck snapped to one side. Its body went limp, before its head rolled off of its body.
Fun Fact: I had this chapter done for like 3 days and forgot to post it until now :'^) I'm really irresponsible with deadlines.