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Not for Nothing

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Sabito frowned. There's something really, really wrong with how Sanemi heaved. His eyes wide, yet empty.

"What happened? Where's Kumeno?" he asked, crouched in front of the Runner.

Sanemi looked up and opened his mouth, but there was no words came out, just heavy breaths.

"Look, first, calm down. You looks like you saw a dragon there," he said, pinched his eyebrows with concern. Even with all the times they argued, Sanemi is still his friend (dare he says, one of the best too) and seeing him like that was really unnerving.

Sanemi took a deep breath and exhaled slowly, his eyes narrowed a little, erased his feral looks. Other than that, he still looked scared and exhausted. "It's much worst than a shucking dragon and- and Kumeno slipped- I, God, I don't know anymore," he chocked out.

"Whoa, slim yourself, Shank. What happened? What did you see?" Sabito urged, but with a softer tone, since the white-haired man in front of him seemed ready to had a panic attack right there and then.

"I'm not sure. There's this ... creature? Machine? I don't know but it looks like a satan's pet itself, like a spider-maggot-scorpion-robot hybrid," Sanemi started while still tried to calm down a bit.

"... Okay...." Sabito stared at his friend, way more concerned than before. Did Sanemi knocked his head?

"I'm not delusional. Kumeno," he spatted out the name sorrowly, "He saw it too and pulled me away. We ran and it chased us to the main passageway. And I turned away, I don't want it to get here and start shooting us with shucking venom."

He grabbed his water bottle with his trembling hand and chugged it down. "Well, the plan was good, we started to lost it but everythings just went wrong when we get to The Blades. There's a passageway in the Section 7 which doesn't has walls, you know which...."

Sabito nodded. "Yeah."

"Long story short, the hell creature swiped his scorpion-tail and Kumeno toppled over. I- God, I tried to, Sabito. I tried to cath him but his hand slipped and- God, just blame me for this one," he paused, "And he fell."

The exact same moment he finished, The Gate closed with a gush and howls of wind.

A cruel howl that made both of them remember their loss.

Another one dead for nothing.

"Look, that wasn't your fault," Sabito said. Not that he wasn't sad with Kumeno's fate, but he's dead. The healthy, living Sanemi in front of him was way more important.

Sanemi chocked out a short, almost hysterical laugh. "Yeah, no. Can't believe that, bud, sorry. If I was calmer maybe I could think clearly back then and didn't choosed that shucking cursed passageway."

"You panicked, and from your describing, the creature must had been terrifying," Sabito huffed. He know that Sanemi actually really sensitive at heart and has a knack for blaming himself, but in time like that, it's rather annoying. "See this in a more positive point, Nem. I mean, you live, and the creature didn't get here."

"Almost," Sanemi pointed.

"Almost, but it didn't thanks to you and Kumeno," Sabito retorted. "The one who killed him was the creature, not you. You were even tried to save him."

"Yeah." Sanemi stared at The Walls, his gaze unsure. "But I still failed. Like I always do."

Sabito sighed. "You don't. Now stop whining and follow me, you need to rest and eat something."

"What about Kumeno?"

"Can you save him now?" it sounded harsh, but Sabito's tone was surprisingly full of sadness instead of bitter.

"... No."

"Then we can't do anything, you have tried enough."