Chapter Eleven: A Worthy Sacrifice

     The odor of blood and stagnant water rammed my nose like a hammer to the stomach. My eyes examined the lab I had not been in since I was a young child. Medusa's lab was just as creepy and bone-chilling as it had been all those years ago. Crona lead me to a chamber towards the back that had a large metal door covered in black arrows, with a snake coiled in the center.

"Lady Medusa, she's here." Crona reached a hand to his left arm, gripping it tightly.

"How absolutely delightful," Medusa opened the metal door, staring at me with a wicked grin. "I just knew you'd come, Akemi. I trust you got my message, yes?"

"Coming at me in my dreams isn't convincing. I just wanted them gone." My eyes clicked to a crimson and I stepped back.

     Medusa took hold of my arm and brought me to her experiment room, and my eyes clicked to a worrying grey.

"W-What are you doing exactly, Medusa...?" I questioned, attempting to leave through the door.

"Something I've been waiting for, darling." Medusa began waving her hands in a hypnotic motion, whispering words for a spell.

"Crona, help! Help me, please Crona!" I screamed, banging my hands frantically on the door.

"Go to sleep, Akemi. It'll all be over soon." His muffled voice came through from the other side.

     I began getting dizzy. Medusa took advantage of that, lifting my unsteady body onto an operating table, and strapping all my limbs down. My last sight was of her devilish grin and two hands holding syringes. A thick, black liquid waiting to be brought to life inside them.

   *Time Skip provided by unhelpful Crona*

     My eyes fluttered open slowly, pain radiating from every part of my body. I groaned, trying to turn my head, only to find it bound down by leather straps. I tried my best to locate any way that I could escape, and that's when she entered.

"Ah, you're with us again. Tell me, how do you feel?" Medusa smirked, leaning against the door frame.

"M-Me-Medusa..." Was all I could whisper before my body went into spasms, gnawing at my very bones with pain.

     She came over to me, undoing the leather bonds and helping me sit up. I grabbed my head, looking down at my frame. Scratches, bloody patches, and mild bruises covered most of my visible skin. I managed not to tear my clothes, though. My eyes clicked to a royal blue, and I felt tears.

"You appeared to go through what seemed to be a night terror when you went under. You fought, tearing your arms from the bonds and going crazy on yourself. Which means, though, it may be working." Medusa got me off of the operating table, and laughed.

"W-Why? Why're you laughing?" I asked, puzzled.

"Take another, longer look at your skin. Notice anything, darling? Crona! Fetch me my coat, it's almost time." Medusa stuck her arms through the sleeves of her snake skin long-coat, held up for her by Crona.

     I held up my dress slightly to get a better look at my soon-to-be scars, and a deafening shriek leaped from my lips. Oh I was bleeding, yes. But the blood was not red, it was black. My finger ran over the wound, wiping up some blood so I could bring it to my eyes. I launched myself at Medusa, outraged.

"What the hell did you do?!" I screamed, elongating my fingernails in an attempt to scratch her.

"Now, now. My darling Akemi, why don't you have Crona here help you out with something?" Medusa shot an arrow that wrapped around me, hoisting my body in the air, and carrying me behind her.

     We walked out in front of her "home", a few sets of stone steps leading up to the flat area where we were. She requested Crona stand on one side, and unwrapped the arrow from my body, placing me some distance from him. Medusa cast out her hand, summoning a broom and flying back towards her house, facing us.

"Crona, fight her." Medusa stated bluntly, shifting her gaze to the pink-haired boy.

"F-Fight her...?" Crona stuttered, beginning to shake.

"Yes, Crona. Fight Akemi. Let's test her abilities." Medusa opened her arms in a wide gesture.

"I-Is it ok-okay to fight a g-girl...?" Crona shifted uneasily.

     I'm not sure what Medusa had done, but she whispered something that made Crona snap. He summoned Ragnarok, and then charged at me. I vaulted into the air, my body reacting in ways it never had before. My right leg was crossed, while my left one was straight out, pulsating. Wings also erupted from my back, and not the leathery ones that required a summoning spell. No, these were feathery. Almost like... angel wings?

"Let's go, soulless blade!" I found myself yelling, my leg shifting into a curved sword, slicing at Crona's torso.

     Crona was tossed down to the ground, and I descended carefully with the help of my newly found wings. What the hell was that? Since when do I have weapon blood? Shut up, brain. I don't have time to be thinking right now! Crona lunged at me again, blood dripping from his fresh wound. I prepared a blast of my soul wavelength, but was interrupted.

"Bloody needle!" Crona commanded, his blood shooting up as black needles.

     My body was pierced several times, impaling me so that my body was facing upwards towards the twisted night sky. I couldn't even attack, all I could do was wail. Something happened, however. Another thing I had never had happen, which at this point I was a little tired of surprises.

     This was something I could only describe as an incredibly thin rope, only staying together by a few threads, snapping. Except, my sanity was the rope. My body jolted up in the air, causing those feathery, black wings to show up once more. I brought my wings in towards me, bringing my arms in to my chest. I snapped my wings back open, and threw out my arms.

"Dark Angel Nightmare!" I howled, sending splintered bolts of rapid shadow magick, causing Crona to erupt in a bright burst of crimson, violet, and black.

"Very well, Akemi! You are my star child." Medusa applauded from her broom, drifting over to where I was still in air.

"I...I killed him..." I felt myself fall silently to the ground, wrapping my wings around myself.

     Medusa came down too, standing next to me. I peered up at her from my winged fortress of feathers, groaning, I stood up too.

"Crona and I have been experimenting in your absence, Akemi. It'll take a lot more than that to rip him apart." Medusa chuckled lightly.

"Lady Medusa, it's f-fair to say that s-sh-she won the f-fight..." Crona stammered, making his way to us.

"Akemi, Crona, inside now. We have something to prepare for.

     I followed Medusa, even less reluctantly than when Crona lead me here. What is this? What has she done to me? Why do I feel so different? I kept mentally questioning myself, not realizing she was calling me.

"Akemi! Pay attention, dammit!" As her words cut through to me, I felt a hand collide with my face. I was taken aback, my skin started to sting.

"I-I'm sorry, mother..." What? What the hell did I just say...?

"Hmph. Well, I have good reason to believe that your little batch of DWMA buddies are on their way here." Medusa turned her back to Crona and I, making her way to what I assumed was a kitchen.

"You have the essence of that filthy Grim Reapers' son masking your own scent." Medusa lit up her hands with a dim yellow light, using magick to make a set of drinks.

"What will happen when they get here? You don't plan to hurt them, do you?" I asked, almost pleadingly.

     I wasn't sure if it was just my thoughts playing tricks on me, or when Medusa turned her back once more, I heard little sploshes in the glasses she was preparing. However, she turned around with a warm smile, giving Crona and I each a glass.

"Of course not! Why would I myself hurt people so near and dear to my daughter?" She hung up her coat, stretching. "Crona, finish your drink and head off to bed. Akemi, practice that lovely magick of yours some more once you finish."

"Yes ma'am Lady Medusa." Crona responded, his voice hindered by the drink he was ingesting.

"I'll to my best, mother." What kind of voice was that? Why was I beginning to sound like a drone?

     I took one last gulp, removing my lips from the glass. The cold liquid slithered down my throat, resting in my stomach. I walked over to the coat rack, grabbing a violet trench coat I had worn in my past days here.

"Goodnight, Crona. I'll see you tomorrow." I gave him a hug, my eyes closing tight with my grip.

"G-Goodnight, sister." He walked off towards his room, and I heard him and Ragnarok arguing once the door was shut.

     Making my way outside, I stared down the steps that lead into the ominous forest. I kicked off the ground, just as I had in my battle with Crona. Sure enough, my wings spawned. It made me wonder, though, how Medusa was able to do this to me. My body was so different, ever since she injected me with what I found out was black blood. It had to be enhanced, though! Crona's black blood only gave him Ragnarok (poor guy), yet mine gave me so much more. I mean hell, I even had weapon blood!

     Flying up to a nearby tree, I bent and arranged the branches to make an adequate sitting space. I folded my wings around me to keep me warm, staring at the laughing moon, never afraid to show its face at night despite it's distorted smile. I smiled, almost happily. I wanted to think about my friends at the DWMA, Lord Death, Spirit, that freaky Professor with the screw sticking out of his head...this odd boy who was insanely OCD...

     Wait. What the hell? Why can't I remember these people? I searched frantically through my memories, but they were becoming enshrouded with fog. Starting to panic, I forced myself up, my breath visible in the frosty night. I beat my wings vigorously, channeling magick into my leg.

"Soulless blade, let's go!" I cried, morphing my leg once more into the weapon I had became earlier.

     I sliced my sitting area to bits, returning to the ground and crying in bursts of rage. I swear, with all the magick I'd used, you'd think my life was in danger. But it wasn't, I believe so at least. I fell on my knees, elongating my nails once more. I tore. All I did was tear at my skin, swipe after swipe the black blood poured from my wounds. I ripped my coat off, sending a shadowbolt towards it. I lay on top of the blood that soaked the soil, smiling wickedly.

"Bloody needle." I whispered, wondering if Crona's attack would work if I said it.

     Sure enough, my blood sharpened, sending spikes into my back. I held back my screams, however. A feeling of weightlessness enveloped me at that moment. I was no longer afraid of my memories disappearing, I only existed for one purpose. No, two now that I really think about it. Two reasons that I was on this wretched planet.

"Mother knows best, and mother wants the DWMA destroyed!" I said in a sing-song tone, laughing maniacally while my body lay there, impaled by my black blood spikes.

The End

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