Pairings: Zero x Suzaku and hints of SuzaLulu.
Rating: PG-13 for now, M (NC-17) later
Warnings: Yaoi (see Pairings) and explicitness in the later chapters. SPOILERS up to episode 18 of the first season and will not follow the original storyline past that.
Disclaimer: These fabulous characters and Code GEASS belong to Sunrise. I only own the plot of this fic.
Summary: After the shot from Avalon, Suzaku was captured by the Black Knight Order and from there, things got a little problematic.
A/N: The second installation. Enjoy, everyone!
Suzaku only glared, completely ignoring the order. He wished that he could do something less… insignificant, but a tape effectively sealed his mouth and there was a gun pointed to his back, the tip nudging his ribs painfully. In addition to the handcuffs, his wrists were now tightly bound by ropes, the kind that hurt like bitch because they cut into your skin. He practically couldn’t feel his fingers anymore, let alone move them.
The room he was brought into was of a medium size, sparsely furnished by a desk, a chair, and a long sofa. On the chair sat the epicenter of his problems, legs crossed and the ever-present black cape fastened around thin shoulders. A dark-skinned woman wearing a white lab coat stood at one corner of the room, her back to the wall and her eyes intent on him.
“I said ‘sit’.” Zero’s voice unpleasantly pierced the silence again. For one brief moment, Suzaku was tempted to test how long he could let the situation to drag on if only to imagine what kind of face the terrorist would make at this display of insolence, but was forced to surrender after one of the Order members kicked the back of his knee. He unceremoniously fell, both knees colliding with the hard floor, adding more bruises to his already abused body. It was quickly followed by something hard hitting the back of his head and a blinding pain erupted. The next thing he knew, his face was already getting reacquainted with the floor.
“Stop it! I did not give you an order to do that!” An angry voice thundered, and through the thick colourful haze obscuring his mind, Suzaku came to the conclusion that it was Zero’s. Which was strange, but the painful throbbing in his head made him unable to pursue that line of thought at the moment.
“He deserves it,” a jarring, venomous voice answered, hatred dripping from every syllable.
“That is for me to decide,” the Black Knight’s leader hissed. “In this room no one does anything until I say so. Is that understood?”
A grudging silence followed. Suzaku didn’t need to look up to detect the growing tension and decided to remain a messy heap on the floor, at least until the pounding in his head ebbed. His hope to be left alone was crashed when a hand reached for his right elbow and roughly jerked him up to a proper sitting position, pulling one or two of his muscles in the process. He winced slightly but otherwise remained as silent as a statue. He would not give the terrorist the satisfaction to see him break.
“This is… what? Your fourth, fifth attempt?”
Even if his mouth wasn’t gagged, Suzaku wouldn’t deign the snide comment with a reply. He only intensified his glare and hoped that it would have some effect on his enemy.
Which it didn’t. Just like usual. In fact, Zero only tilted his head slightly to his right and called out, “Lakshata.”
The dark-skinned woman in the corner stirred. She stepped forward from the shadows, a long smoking pipe between her taper fingers and a small frown on her face. She let her eyes roam over his body for a few seconds before looking back at Zero.
“I really don’t approve of this,” she said, her voice heavy with barely concealed reluctance.
“And I don’t seek for your approval,” Zero’s reply didn’t miss a beat. Her features tightened slightly at this rebuke, but an indifferent wave of his hand put an end to the argument. “Just get on with it. I will take all responsibilities should anything go wrong.”
The woman shrugged her shoulders. “Your order, Boss,” she murmured and took out a small container from the pocket of her coat. Encased inside were a syringe and a small tube of silvery substance which looked very suspicious in Suzaku’s opinion. His eyes widened when she removed the content of the tube into the syringe and proceeded to approach him, stopping only a few feet away.
“Before you freak out, I’ll have you know that this isn’t going to kill you,” she told him with a loosely nonchalant voice which clashed spectacularly with how he felt seeing her flailing the sharp needle around. “It will only disable your legs for an hour or so because our eminent leader wishes to have a private audience with you without any foolish attempt from your part to either escape or attack him. However, I must inject the fluid precisely where I want to and if you as much as twitch while I’m doing it, let’s just say that the effect is going to be very unpleasant for you.”
Suzaku didn’t react well to threats and the woman seemed to notice this too because she suddenly chuckled.
“You still aren’t going to stay put, are you?” she clicked her tongue and shook her golden head slowly. He could easily pick up the amused note in her lazy voice and it made his face burn slightly. “Well, hold him down, boys. I don’t want a bloody mess on my clothes.”
It seemed to Suzaku that his guards – gaolers – were only too happy to have another reason to beat him senseless. One kicked his stomach, another pushed his shoulders flat to the floor while the other two pinned his legs, all done with evidently more force than necessary. This time Zero said nothing, not even when one of them viciously dug his fingers into Suzaku’s skull to hold his head down. The bright lamp overhead made him blink furiously and the woman – Lakshata – took this chance to crouch next to him and roll up the ends of his pants.
The sharp sting on his upper shin made his blood boil. Suzaku wasn’t a stranger to acts of degradation, but it didn’t mean that he had to get used to them. Certainly not now, with this man. But the others were doing a good job keeping him down and he could only look up, staring at the expressionless mask of his captor and trying not to feel completely humiliated.
The effect of the injection was quick. In less than one minute, he could no longer feel his legs, let alone move them. The sensation was so new and foreign, way different from anything he had ever experienced that it made him panic for a moment. Losing any kind control had never sat well with Suzaku, but this really belonged somewhere in the top five. It pretty much rendered him helpless, what with his hands tied behind his back and his mouth still sealed.
Apparently satisfied, Zero waved a hand to dismiss the others, leaving him alone with his prisoner in the room. At this point, it was hard for Suzaku not to feel slightly intimidated. If the terrorist hadn’t had an overwhelming advantage before, he certainly did now.
“When will you learn that not only that trying to escape is useless, it also worsens my men’s mood?”
A hand forcibly tugged his face up and peeled the tape over his lips. The skin around them prickled, but Suzaku was all too conscious of the other man kneeling next to him and the fingers which still lingered on his face to spare his attention on anything else.
“If I haven’t stopped them earlier, you would have been beaten to death,” Zero continued, his voice rumbling darkly in the otherwise silent room.
“Why do you care?” Suzaku snapped and jerked his head away from the terrorist’s gloved fingers. The sudden movement brought a fresh wave of pain to his chest, pulling a wrong muscle somewhere. It caught him unprepared and he couldn’t help the low hiss escaping his mouth.
“Do you think I do?”
“I won’t be here if you don’t,” he bit out. “For you, I’m better off dead.”
“And now you think you can read my mind,” Zero said dryly and rose to his feet to reclaim his chair. He sat down, one leg crossing the other, and turned to his prisoner again. “Don’t misunderstand your situation, Kururugi. I do not care about you. It is the trouble you’re causing me which continuously demands my attention.”
“You know what to do to rid yourself of that trouble.”
“Oh? Pray enlighten me then.” For some reasons, the terrorist sounded almost amused, and that irritated Suzaku to no end.
“You can just kill me and be done with it,” he growled, not caring if he had taken Zero’s bait. This man infuriated him to degrees he never knew existed, from the inflection of his voice, to the way he sat, the very image of calm, to the way one finger tapped on the arm of the chair in a slow, methodical beat.
“That is certainly possible, yes,” the reply was a low, almost lazy drawl, “but unfortunately the method is too ungainly for my taste.”
Suzaku very nearly laughed at this. “That’s coming from you? Killing people is ungainly? Like it has ever bothered you before.”
“Certain sacrificing has to be made when necessity arises,” Zero said in a philosophical manner. “However, your circumstances are quite different as they are. Some complications notwithstanding, you can be a great asset to the Order… if trained properly.”
“Only when hell freezes over.”
“I’ll have an endless snowstorm in hell if it is what it takes.”
It should take surprise, or some kind of astonishment out of him, but it was hard for Suzaku not to sneer at this. “And you said you didn’t care about me.”
The moment of silence after his accusation left a bittersweet tang of victory in his mouth. The situation was absurd, but suddenly it didn’t matter if he was still lying helpless on the ground, or if his opponent had every chance to abuse him in the worst way imaginable. The fact that he was winning was enough.
It had not taken long before the silence became rather unsettling and the blissful inaction turned into instant suspicion. It took a few seconds too long for the other man to finally reply, “Although I do enjoy sarcasm every now and then, I must admit that you are testing my limit.”
“Maybe because you’ve never stood at the receiving end,” Suzaku retaliated hotly, still giddy, wanting that the taste of triumph again but the suspicion wouldn’t leave him. And when Zero opened his mouth again, he realized that there was a reason to be suspicious.
“Are you sure you want to annoy me, Kururugi?”
It shut him up. Suzaku hadn’t forgotten what this man had over him – how could he anyway. To suffer his anger in silence seemed to be his only choice because if he dared as much as to open his mouth right now, the things he said would be so inordinately offensive that it would give the Black Knight's leader a very good reason to follow through the rest of his threat. Getting Lelouch in trouble was the last thing he wanted right now.
As if he could read his mind, Zero reached for a large brown envelope on his desk and took out the contents, which he then tossed to the floor next to him. Suzaku felt his eyes widening.
“I believe these are what you want to see?”
They were photographs. Of Lelouch. Suzaku would have jumped up to a sitting position if he was able to, but the action proved to be a lot harder to perform with both legs currently out of service. He ended up lying on his side, half on his upper right arm. It should have been painful, but he had lost every ability to care about his well-being at the moment. The pictures had seized his full attention. T
hey were taken in school, from quite a distance but clear enough for him to make sure that it was really Lelouch – a distance, he realized with a shudder, close enough to effectively put a bullet in his friend if he dared to try anything. The pictures were all different, some featuring Lelouch in his school uniform, some in his usual combination of red jacket and black turtleneck, some in the school ground, some through the window looking into the closed confines of his bedroom. A particular one caused a chill to run down Suzaku’s spine. It was taken at night and the object of the picture was sleeping with a vaguely troubled expression shadowing his face, completely unaware of the presence of the intruder.
It was way too close. Too dangerous. The taker of the picture could have put his fingers around Lelouch’s neck and it would be over before it even started. Suzaku looked up quickly at Zero, ignoring the flash of pain the movement had caused.
“He is all right, isn’t he?”
“If I say yes, will you believe me?”
The question struck a nerve somewhere inside him and Suzaku knew that his whole reaction was reflected on his face. He bit his lips, eyes raking across the strewn out pictures briefly, and tried to decide which was worse, giving into his fear or giving into defeat.
“Maybe,” he forced himself to mutter at last.
“Well, that’s a surprise,” Zero replied dryly, his voice entirely devoid of said surprise. “What happened to ‘you’re a damn terrorist’?”
“You’re still a damn terrorist.”
“I’ll remember that,” the slight note of amusement had returned, although there was something darker and sharper now shadowing it. “Now, can we discuss our business in a civil manner or do you want to continue to sulk?”
Suzaku thought about the handcuffs, ropes, tape, injection, and wanted to retort which part of them was ‘civil’ but held his tongue. Lelouch. Remember Lelouch.
“I have given you one week,” Zero continued, obviously taking his silence as a sign of resignation. “What is your answer?”
It was a stupid hope, but Suzaku found himself clinging to that faint hope in the horizon that he could buy more time by steadily refusing to answer. As with everything which concerned the terrorist, he watched it turn unfavorable to him faster than the blink of an eye.
“Obviously you were too busy planning fruitless attempts of escape instead of considering an offer which may be able to save your friend’s life,” the masked man deadpanned, completely unimpressed by his obstinate silence. Suzaku had to refrain an urge to beat something at this constant – undoubtedly deliberate – allusion to Lelouch.
“What do you want me to do?” he finally asked through gritted teeth.
“I want you to work with me.”
“Work under me then.”
“No,” he snarled, “I’ll die first before–“
“I must admit that I’m getting tired of this combined trait of stubbornness and stupidity,” Zero interrupted him, his voice rising slightly. “When will it go through your thick skull that it isn’t your life which is at stake here?”
Another moment of silence occurred. This time it wasn’t woven with traces of victory – rather the complete opposite. Hate wasn’t enough to describe how Suzaku felt toward this... complete and utter bastard of a leader of the terrorist group. He loathed him, to the point where it leached away every other thought and emotion but that one obsession of simply loathing. His entire body was shaking with so much anger. Hate. Anger. Hate. Everything else ceased to matter.
But Lelouch… Lelouch.
“If I agree, will you promise not to hurt him?” Suzaku tried to ignore the stinging pain of humiliation. At the tremor which had leaked into his voice and painted his words into a desperate plea. At the fact that he had knelt and surrendered.
“Of course not,” the reply was clear-cut and dispassionate. “That depends on the duration of your loyalty to me.”
“You can never have my loyalty,” he spat.
“Your service then,” a note of irritation slipped into Zero’s voice. “Name it what you want, Kururugi. I cannot care less as long as you obey my orders.”
Suzaku fell onto his back, eyes involuntarily shutting, right arm long since going numb. It was an admission of defeat, he knew, but he had given away too much ground. A little more wouldn’t matter. “What do you want me to do?” he repeated numbly.
“For now, just live,” the other man’s voice sounded oddly strangled. “Don’t do anything stupid like trying to escape despite knowing the volatility of my men’s temper.”
“They hate me enough to want me dead.”
“You can make them un-hate you if you really want.”
“What if they end up killing me anyway?” the question simply fell from his mouth. Suzaku knew that it was only for the sake of an argument. He was too far gone to care. All he could think of was the fact that his hands were bound and this man had used Lelouch against him and Lelouch… Lelouch…
“Well, then keep this one little detail in mind,” Zero seized the front of his shirt and pulled him up. His voice was low, menacing, but with a violent, almost desperate edge to it, and the way it echoed in his head made Suzaku want to scream.
“If you die, so does your dearest friend.”
Zero let him go just as quickly and his upper body hit the floor with a dull thud. Suzaku was too shaken to notice. And the other man didn’t linger.
“Your legs will be able to move again in half-an-hour,” the tone of his voice had returned to that untouchable scale of indifference. “I’ll send someone to escort you back then.”
And with that he was left alone in the room. The gasp which left his mouth sounded more like a sob, and it trailed away into a train of mirthless laughter. The lingering doubt – fear – he had tried to bury sprang out from the damp, cold earth of his memory and stared at him in the face. He could continue refusing to accept the stark fact, but even the stupid, hopelessly naive boy in him knew when believing in your best friend had turned into making a fool out of yourself.
His laughter had died away. Enough was enough.
End Chapter Two
Enough mindfucking, everyone?
Gah, it’s hard to keep Suzaku in his old character since my pathetic little mind keeps going back to this picture of his new (badass) look in season 2. I hope I didn’t screw him up too badly. And Zero too. If his character comes out too powerful, do tell. I’ve tried to tone him down a little, but since we are looking from Suzaku’s side, I think it’s only fitting to make him look more ominous.
Thank you for reading and please tell me what you think!