Would you die for the one you loved?

Or would you just kill the one who took him from you?

Way to fuck up a perfectly good friendship. Way to fuck up a perfectly good team. Stick three selfish people all in one room and something's bound to go wrong. All it takes is a lingering look, a lingering touch, and the realization that there are some things that simply cannot be shared.

I don't even remember how it came to this, my gun pressed into his neck with his fingers clenched down over mine and a blade from a third hand digging into my throat in an inescapable warning. The eyes that stare at me are unreadable. The gaze boring into the back of my head is heavy and hateful.

"Drop it." The twist to his voice says it's the last time he's going to warn me, but that's a lie. I can pull the trigger just as soon as he can rip that blade into my skin, and I'll be okay with the results. He knows that. They both know that. More than that, I know that the second I drop my gun is the second I become a head shorter. I've crossed a serious line here and none of us can back away from it.

Two months ago we were sitting around drinking and smoking, and now…? I can pinpoint the exact moment Schwarz started to fall apart, and because of that, I don't think it's far off to blame everything that happened in the past two months on Nagi. If he hadn't taken it upon himself to up and die on us, maybe we'd never have started thinking about how fragile life was even for people like us. Some part of me knows that I should be grateful for his sacrifice, because if he hadn't burned himself out trying to protect us in that fall to the sea, we'd all be dead right now. When I'm standing here between Crawford and Farfarello, however, it's hard to feel anything but disgust for the littlest Schwarz. I don't think he meant for things to come to this, but that's life for you.

"Drop it," Farfarello says again.

I can't help but smile. "No."

I knew I was right about him. Can't bear to risk it, hm? How predictable, latching onto one thing so very fiercely and refusing to let go. Just like his precious fucking god. Just like this man in front of me.

I'm okay with the results of me pulling the trigger. Farfarello isn't. It means I've already won, one way or the other. I get what's in front of me or I get our deaths. The only thing left to find out is whether or not he's going to lose one or both of us. The choice is in his hands now and either path means he loses. So let's see how much he means to you, Farfarello. Let's see if you'll let him live tonight.

I can wait.

Part One
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