A.N. â€“ Very A.U., dark, sick humor. Could be a season three piece, I guess.
William was dead. The broken body, lying haphazard near the cafeteriaâ€™s entrance, was kind of hard to miss. The blood pooled quickly in the dirt, seeping and gurgling its way toward the cafeteria, where not one chair remained filled as the student populace stared out the windows.
Sissi had her hand cupped over her mouth, and could not stop staring. Herb and Nick lingered behind her, conversing quietly. A bit further down by the door, the gang (minus Odd) was being a bit more open in their discussions.
â€śWhat exactly did you say to him?â€ť Ulrich was at once confused and steadfast.
â€śI only told him the truth,â€ť Yumi replied tersely.
â€śAnd the truth was?â€ť
â€śThat I wasnâ€™t interested in fucking him, and that I believed that he wasnâ€™t, either.â€ť
â€śAnd what do you mean by that?â€ť Jeremie cut in.
â€śHe was trying to get to me to get to Ulrich,â€ť Yumi stated.
â€śThe hopeless romantic takes on a whole new meaning, then,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śHe had no hope of ever getting what he really wanted.â€ť
â€śSo, you tell him this, and half an hour later, he jumps of the dormâ€™s roof?â€ť Aelita asked.
â€śHoly shit!â€ť Odd had returned, and didnâ€™t like what he saw or heard one bit.
â€śNot so loud!â€ť Yumi hissed, making him and Aelita shrink back. Sissi inclined her head briefly their way, and then turned to join her cronies. â€śThere had to have been other reasonsâ€¦â€ť
â€śAnd why wouldnâ€™t he want to talk to me first?â€ť Ulrich said. â€śI could have tried to work this out with him, find a common ground we could live with.â€ť
â€śYou know him, all spur of the moment leading to rash decisions,â€ť Yumi said.
â€śYeahâ€¦â€ť Ulrich trailed off as Jeremie pointed out Jim coming out with the principal. They gave pause to look at the body, but neither could stomach it for long. They made their way into the cafeteria to address the students.
â€śWe have called the police, but before they get here, we need to know â€“ did any of you see exactly what happened?â€ť the principal asked. A chorus of noâ€™s greeted them. A couple of students had heard a dull thud, but no one had seen him actually jump from outside. Everyone had been down eating dinner.
â€śVery well, then. Jim here will escort you back to your rooms,â€ť Principal Delmas said. â€śDay students, please return home and inform nobody of what had happened. The matter will need to be thoroughly investigated, and Mr. Dunbarâ€™s parents informed.â€ť
â€śSo he is, reallyâ€¦â€ť Millie trailed off, choked up.
Jim caught her as she fainted. â€śNow everyone, follow me. Youâ€™re to stay put until the police are through.â€ť
â€śCâ€™mon, letâ€™s go. My room,â€ť Jeremie said.
â€śIâ€™ll call you when I get home, then Iâ€™ll sneak out,â€ť Yumi said. They parted ways, grim expressions on their faces.
After Jim had left, Odd and Ulrich had crept out of their room to Jeremieâ€™s. A few minutes later, an out-of-breath Yumi joined the boy Einstein to discuss matters further. The door shut soundlessly behind Yumi, who pushed the lock for extra caution, and opened the Pandoraâ€™s Box theyâ€™d all been thinking about but couldnâ€™t say while in public.
â€śHow much do we tell them?â€ť
â€śAs little as possible, obviously, but we canâ€™t be silent, either,â€ť Jeremie responded.
â€śThat wonâ€™t go over well when the police find us together like this,â€ť Ulrich said.
â€śTrue, but we have one thing on our side - we didnâ€™t kill him,â€ť Odd said.
â€śYes, but we could have possibly prevented it,â€ť Aelita said.
â€śAnd thatâ€™s the problem. Homicide through negligence is a crime, too,â€ť Jeremie pushed up his glasses. â€śBut we donâ€™t tell them our secret, and they donâ€™t know that.â€ť
â€śAnd if we tell the truth, theyâ€™ll find out we were the last people to be with him from some student.,â€ť Ulrich sounded really depressed.
â€śI did kinda run off fast with him between classes,â€ť Odd shrugged. â€śIt was a pain tracking him down, though.â€ť
â€śBut we canâ€™t give away Lyoko!â€ť Yumi was barely containing an outburst. â€śThey find that, weâ€™re screwed.â€ť
â€śWe know, Yumi,â€ť Aelita patted the Japanese girl on the shoulder. â€śWe still have things to do. We canâ€™t let anyone stop us.â€ť
â€śSo, what do we make up?â€ť Jeremie suggested. The others gaped. â€śWe tell them as much truth as possible, but we canâ€™t tell them how he truly died. Weâ€™d all be arrested, and Oddâ€¦â€ť
â€śIâ€™d be jailed for sure,â€ť he said. â€śBeing found with the body isnâ€™t exactly something to clear your nameâ€¦â€ť
â€śWe all probably have prints or DNA on the body,â€ť Ulrich intoned.
â€śHow can you be so calm about this?â€ť Yumi had resisted, but needed to vent. â€śOur actions have led to the death of a studentâ€¦no, a friend.â€ť She started crying softly. â€śHow can your consciences cope? Aelita I could understand, butâ€¦â€ť
â€śBut what?â€ť Aelita was livid. â€śJust because I spent some time as a virtual being, Iâ€™m out of tune with human life? I hurt, too. Iâ€™m scared. But I know enough to fight it, to keep on going. You have to as well. For all of us. One of us breaks, and itâ€™s over.â€ť
â€śWhat, you think weâ€™re going to get hauled off and interrogated?â€ť Odd asked.
â€śAnythingâ€™s possible,â€ť Ulrich deadpanned. The room grew silent as Yumi calmed down as everyone thought.
â€śWhat if we tell them what we were talking about earlier?â€ť Aelita said.
â€śThatâ€™d keep everyone but me and Yumi safe,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śA loverâ€™s triangle is tricky to sort out.â€ť
â€śBut it never happened like that, exactly. I was bullshitting in front of Sissi, mostly for effect,â€ť Yumi said. â€śSure, William had some quirks about him, but him going through me for Ulrich? Thatâ€™s ridiculous.â€ť
â€śBut by saying it publicly, we have targets on our backs,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śIt doesnâ€™t matter how much was fabricated.â€ť He paused. â€śHow much DID you fabricate?â€ť
â€śI did turn him down recently, just not today. And he seemed awfully OK with it, so I took it to mean he was interested in someone else besides me maybe,â€ť Yumi exhaled. â€śI ran with it to mean you when put on the spot. I didnâ€™t know you knew about it.â€ť
â€śI didnâ€™t; I was faking, too.â€ť Ulrich looked sheepish. â€śWe had to think of something for the suicide angle to look real. A lost love seemed good, and you were the perfect candidate.â€ť
â€śBut by doing so, youâ€™re now at risk,â€ť Aelita said. They all nodded and went back to the other problem â€“ what to say when questioned. Another stretch of silence passed, only interrupted by Odd.
â€śWhy didnâ€™t we discuss this when it first happened?â€ť he queried.
â€śWe were all sort of freaked out and not thinking straight,â€ť Jeremie said. â€śWeâ€™ve had an hour to mull this over. The hard part should be over â€“ weâ€™ve done all that we can to make it look like he jumped. But we need to get our stories straight.â€ť
â€śIf they look into his immediate past, theyâ€™re going to see some strange occurrences anyway,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śHeâ€™s been acting off since he found out.â€ť
â€śIt was his choice to stay,â€ť Yumi said. â€śHe dug his own grave and now heâ€™s lying in it.â€ť
â€śYumi! Pick a better saying next time,â€ť Aelita scolded.
â€śI liked the loverâ€™s spat thing, thoughâ€¦â€ť Odd said out of the blue.
Both girls rounded on him. â€śPervert!â€ť
â€śSo?â€ť Odd flashed a brilliant smile that shut them up. It disappeared as he continued. â€śI must be, to volunteer to throw him off the roof.â€ť
â€śItâ€™s not your fault youâ€™re nimble and agile in real life, too,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śI did goad you with a skinny comment.â€ť
â€śSo?â€ť Odd said again. â€śIn one way or another, weâ€™re all in this together. Weâ€™re all to blame.â€ť
â€śBut will the police see it as such?â€ť Aelita asked, cautiously. â€śIt was set up so it looked as if he killed himself. Whatâ€™s to point to foul play in all this?â€ť
â€śFingerprints,â€ť Odd said.
â€śBut do any of you have police records?â€ť Aelita asked. They shook their heads no. â€śSo why should you be concerned? Why should any of us be?â€ť
â€śTheyâ€™ll go through the school database and get them,â€ť Jeremie said matter-of-factly.
â€śCould we alter our fingerprints?â€ť Yumi asked. Just then, someone knocked on the door. Jimâ€™s voice could be heard: â€śWe need everyone down in the cafeteria again. We got a late dinner prepared, and the Principal wants to speakâ€¦â€ť his voice faded as he walked down the hall, knocking on the other doors. Jeremie peeked his head out. Jim had gone.
â€śIf itâ€™s questioning, go with the loverâ€™s thing, Yumi; itâ€™s all we got,â€ť Jeremie looked defeated.
â€śFine.â€ť Yumi sounded anything but.
As grim as earlier, they made their way down to the cafeteria. The police were there â€“ talking to the Principal and outside cleaning up the crime scene. William was no longer there. The students were being directed to sit at some tables by a makeshift stage while dinner was laid out.
â€śWell, letâ€™s see if they added 2 and two to get four or five.â€ť Jeremie said as they sat down.
The Principal motioned for quiet and received it. â€śThe police have done a thorough investigation and concluded that Williamâ€™s death was a suicide.â€ť A gasp went up in the cafeteria, though that had been the general consensus earlier that day amongst them. â€śHis family will be here tomorrow to sort out matters, and a funeral will be held Saturday. Classes will be cancelled until then. You are encouraged to attend the funeral if at all possible. That is all. Try to enjoy your meals and get back to bed. I hope we can all get through this â€“ together,â€ť With that, Mr. Delmas stepped off the stage and the students began hushed conversations anew.
â€śIt worked,â€ť Odd said.
â€śApparently,â€ť Jeremie let the relief he felt to flood his voice.
â€śNo love triangles for me,â€ť Yumi sang. The group looked over at her askance. â€śGuess Iâ€™m just de-stressing.â€ť
â€śWeâ€™re in the clear, guys. Lyokoâ€™s safe,â€ť Ulrich said. â€śXANA tried to fuck us over, but we got through it.â€ť
â€śItâ€™d be in bad taste to celebrate, but itâ€™s what I feel like doing,â€ť Aelita said.
â€śWe can do that later. We have a funeral to attend this weekend. We lost one of our own,â€ť Jeremie said. Reluctant nods followed his words. â€śWe did get through this â€“ together.â€ť
And a table over, Sissi watched as the gang dug into their food, a malicious smile on her face.
I'd have to consider this an AU since season 3 aired. Still, i'm going to stick it in the S3 category anyway.
Author's Chapter Notes:
First chapter up, second on the way.