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Devil May Cry - Degrees of Separation

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Aug. 15th, 2006 | 08:02 pm
location: Flagstaff, AZ
mood: apatheticapathetic

Title: Degrees of Separation
Author: Britani Gael (sterlingsylver @ lj)
Fandom: Devil May Cry 3
Rating: PG-13
Summary: AU. What if Vergil had won the final fight in the Underworld, instead of Dante? What if he’d lost to Mundus anyway? Seven years after Devil May Cry 3, Vergil returns to the human world – and bring all sorts of problems, demons, and enemies with him.

Warnings: Some DxL history here, and also original characters.

* * *

Chapter Three: Right Hand Man


—sme—smell—ste—st—nch—

—blood—Sp—Spa—Spardaaaa—

—here—sme—ee—ell—heeere—

The demons lumbered around the stone room, turning in graceless circles as they struggled to follow the scent. In truth, they probably could and would have gone for hours, but Vergil was sick of hearing their rasping voices.

If he was supposed to believe that these albino freaks were the brains of the operation, than Sergius must have thought he was a complete moron.

—S—S—Spa—Spaard—

“You’re correct,” Vergil said. He descended on them from above, unsheathing Yamato in midair and hacking the three demons into tiny pieces before his feet touched the ground.

“Pathetic.” He flicked the blood of his sword, and resheathed it with a frown. Picking off the canon fodder was getting him nowhere. Much as he hated to admit, his strength was only going to carry him so far. And not much further.

He needed to make progress.

Temen-Ni-Gru was exactly like he remembered it, which meant that the humans either could not see it, or knew better than to interfere with its workings. Dante had opened most of the doors and puzzles already. At least the idiot had been good for something.

He wondered how Dante would feel about his return, and about the demons he’d just unleashed on the city.

He wondered if Dante was still alive.

He’d left his brother bleeding and broken. If Dante had survived, and hadn’t managed to find himself in any more trouble, he probably would have been back on his feet in a few hours, fully recovered in a week. Maybe days. If he had survived. Vergil couldn’t even be sure a week had passed in the human world.

He’d seen the people outside – no, he wasn’t going to try and piece all that together. He would be working from his own perspective. He’d left Dante with his lady friend outside the tower a little over four and a half days ago, he’d been on the run in hell ever since.

S—Sss—Sss—

This was getting dull.

The voices were coming from the hallway outside. What idiot had decided that demons needed to speak? They were obnoxious enough just as they were.

He stalked outside, hoping at least that their numbers would be significant this time. He was itching for a real fight. He stepped through the door and he drew his sword.

There were demons all right, there were about a hundred of them and they walked right past him without even a sniff. “Ss—Sss—Serg—Sergi—uus—

Seer—rrgi—us—

Gi—ii—ius—

They moved forward like they were part of a parade, all dressed up in hideous white costumes and reeking like death, and as the first hundred marched past more followed. Someone was calling them back, and they were heading for the upper floors.

Scowling, Vergil sheathed his sword and followed them.

* * *

“For the last time, we’re closed!”

Dante resisted the urge to slam the receiver down – he might break it, and then he’d be short a phone and out of luck. So he carefully hung the phone up, silently cursing to himself and waiting for it to start ringing again. His patience was wearing thin. He’d been getting calls nonstop for the last hour. Apparently Enzo really didn’t understand vacation.

He’d gotten the first call only minutes after Verge’s disappearance, and he’d grabbed his sword and his guns and he’d nearly been out the door inside of a minute. How much of a coincidence could it be, an emergency call about a demon attack, right after his kid had been kidnapped by demons?

Lady had protested. He hadn’t cared.

And then phone had rung again. Another attack, another emergency. On the other side of town.

And the phone hadn’t stopped since.

As if on cue, it started ringing again. Dante groaned.

“Just unplug it,” Lady called from the other room.

He ignored her, and picked up. “Devil May Cry,” he said, trying not to sound bored. “If you’re Enzo, and you’re still calling me, I’m going to have to track you down and cut off your head, which won’t be hard, because my day job is bounty hunting, and even though you’ve got a thick neck—“

“Dante, you have to listen to me,” Enzo said.

“Actually, I don’t.”

“Dante! They’re offering me so much money, neither of us’ll have to work a day after this. All you gotta do is—“

Dante hung up.

He’d like nothing more than to follow a lead, shoot the hell out of some demons, and do something – but how was he supposed to figure out what lead to follow? Another case, he’d likely pick one at random. Even he was wrong, he’d still get to kill things.

This case, he was less willing to make a stupid mistake.

He waited for a few seconds, and when Enzo didn’t call back, he stepped away from the desk and into the back room. The guest room, actually, even if he didn’t ever have any guests over. That might have been because of the state of the guest room, which only had a moldy red couch and a mold red stuffed chair. Oh, and a lamp, but that didn’t work.

Also, currently, an unconscious girl on the sofa. She’d been in danger of bleeding to death a little while ago, but now Lady was pretty sure she’d be okay.

Lady was sitting on the ground with her back to the bed, next to a pile of blood soaked bandages. She looked pissed.

“Jeez,” Dante said, throwing himself into the red chair. “Did I miss the memo about the upcoming apocalypse or something? ‘Cause this is getting crazy.”

“Crazy,” Lady said, dryly. Crap, she really was pissed off.

“Yeah, well...” He decided to change the subject. “How’s little Miss Sunshine? You said she might be able to help.”

“She’s the only lead we have, Dante.” That was his fault. He could tell by the tone of her voice. “There wasn’t anything in Verge’s bedroom, and all the wards were still up.”

They had been up. Not anymore. Dante had ripped them all back down the first chance he’d got. If any demon was going to try something now, he wanted the opportunity to tear it apart with his hands. And Lady hadn’t argued, because even though she was trying to be the calm and reasonable one, here, he knew she wanted the same thing.

“I think,” he said, perfectly aware of the fact that she didn’t care what he thought, “that this girl was just screwing with you. That’s an old hobby of mine, though, so I really can’t—“

“Dante,” she said. “Shut the hell up.”

Ouch.

The phone started up again. Dante put his head in his hands. “Shit.”

“Just unplug the phone,” Lady said. Again.

“Can’t, babe.” They’d been over this before, a few times. “Might miss something important.”

“You think a demon is going to call and request a ransom? You think Missing Persons is going to contact us? You think Vergil is going to find a payphone and tell us where he is?”

Vergil is dead,” Dante said. He stood up, because the phone was still ringing. “And as for Verge–“

“Verge is going to be dead, too—“

“I know.”

“—unless we figure out something besides answering the phone!”

“Damn it, Lady, I know!” he shouted, and he instantly regretted it, because he saw her flinch. “Hey, I’m sorry, I just—“

Ring. Ring. “Dante?”

“What?”

Ring. Ring. “The phone!”

“Oh.” He walked back into the office, and then he crouched down behind his desk. He found the cord for the phone pretty easily, and he ripped it out of the wall. Which caused the phone to teeter off the desk and crashed onto his head. “Ouch!”

“Dante?”

He stood, walked back into the guest room, rubbing his head. “It’s unplugged. Are you happy?”

Lady was standing up, and brandishing weapons. Dante paused in the doorway, warily. Getting shot wouldn’t kill him, no, but it sure hurt worse than a mosquito bite, and she couldn’t really be that mad at him, could she? He held up his hands. “Hold on a sec, Lady.”

She rolled her eyes. “I’m not going to shoot you, Dante, I just—“

“Preparing for that random demon attack just around the corner, or maybe waiting for that ransom—“

She shot him in the face. It went right through his skin, and his skull, and his brain, and as his head snapped back on his neck he wondered if maybe she was shooting out parts of his memory every damn time she did this. Did everything grow back exactly the same? Not that she did it that often. She thought it might traumatize their son.

Dante was pretty sure it traumatized him more.

He wiped the blood off his forehead, and he really couldn’t think of anything funny to say. “I thought you weren’t going to shoot me.”

“I wasn’t… going to.” She lowered her gun, and he had a feeling she really meant it. This was a lady who rechecked her ammunition like a little kid chewed on his security blanket. “I only…”

He shrugged. “Forget it.” He marched back into his office, where he dropped into his chair and put his feet up on the desk. “I’m really okay,” he called. “It only hurts like getting shot in the face.”

She followed him, and lucky for him she’d brought the gun with her. “Dante, I’m sorry.”

“I bet.”

“I mean it, Dante. I really didn’t mean to shoot you.”

He bit his tongue on the sarcastic comment, because that would make things worse instead of better, and he really didn’t mean it anyway. He put his feet back on the ground and sighed. “Listen, Lady,” he said. “Are you okay?”

She stared at him. “What did you say?”

“I asked if you were all right.”

The look on her face was pretty clear. She thought he’d lost his mind.

“What?” he asked. He didn’t think that was very fair. If he had lost his mind, that was only because she’d shot it out of his head.

“Dante, you’ve seen me stabbed, shot, poisoned, and nearly killed in an explosion, and I don’t think you’ve ever asked me that.”

He thought back, and maybe she was right. “Look,” he said. “Usually I can tell if you’re okay, or I already know that you aren’t. But this is different, so I’m asking.”

“I’m not all right.” She stuck her gun back in her belt. “But I can handle this. I have to. And I don’t want to talk to you about it.”

Double ouch.

“It’s nothing personal, Dante,” she continued. “I just… I just don’t want to talk about it. We’re going to wake up Mara, she’s going to tell us something we can work with, and then we’re going to find Verge.”

He sighed. “Lady, demons…” He couldn’t tell her anything about demons that she didn’t already know. Like the fact that demons only took little boys to eat them.

Like the fact that demons couldn’t cross the wards, and the only way he could figure they’d gotten the kid was for him to be outside. Dante had only drifted off for a few minutes, could Verge have snuck out in that time? Yes. But why the hell would he?

Like the fact that as sure as Lady was they’d been hunting the kid and wanted him alive, they really had no idea what the hell was going on.

And they were stuck in his office, because there wasn’t a damn thing they could do.

He stood up fast enough to knock his chair back, and walked past her. “Let me know when you want to talk to Sunshine, okay?” He started up the stairs to Verge’s room.

“Dante, we already looked up there.”

“Yeah, I know.” He wasn’t going to look for clues, he was trying to get away from her. Before they started fighting for real, and made a bad situation even worse.

And if was going to feel guilty, that was something he liked to do without an audience.

* * *

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