Disclaimer: I do not own Code Geass or any of their related works; otherwise, I wouldn't be doing fanfiction.
A/N: well, I really have a terrible habit of putting out new fanfictions stories as soon as I am hit with an inspiration bug. This one was brought about between discussions with a friend who started rewatching Code Geass recently in both preparation for the new season coming out and to see if the series holds up still after becoming older and wiser.
The basis for this story's idea came from those discussions which I expanded upon further using my knowledge of the side materials related to Code Geass. At the very least, it might be refreshing to try my hand with a Code Geass story that isn't a crossover for a change.
Basically, this story takes place a few months before events of episode one, which will play out somewhat differently given the set up below. After spending some years preparing to lead the rebellion that Lelouch hopes will topple his father's Empire he has found a group of teenagers who want a home for themselves to form the foundation for what will become the Black Knights.
But before returning to Japan/Area 11 to begin his rebellion, there are a few things Lelouch intends to obtain to have enough resources to get a solid start, which was possible thanks to a particular man the Ashford Family had reached out to who helped them cover up Lelouch's demise. Yet he knew of Lelouch's desire to destroy Britannia and sought to assist the young man as a means to help himself and to atone.
Will it all go according to plan?
The Twleve Knights and their King
"Your invitation please," an armed guard standing on the driver side of a black limo inquired.
The guard attire consisted of a black coat with matching pants and boots. His black leather gloves allowed him to accept the invitation envelope readily, but his other hand steadied the assault rifle slung over his left shoulder while his fellow guards, wearing identical black cloth caps observed.
The guard studied the invitation before passing it back to the limo driver, "welcome Mr. Dufresne. Please enjoy yourself on my employer's behalf."
"Thank you very," The passenger in the back seat replied, "I appreciate that."
The man sitting in the back of limo appeared to be in his early twenties wearing a black tuxedo; he had brown hair with green eyes and a fair skin complexion while wearing white gloves. The driver of the limo was a middle-aged man with black hair and blue eyes wearing a black uniform with a matching cap on top of his head. Sitting in the backseat next to Mr. Dufresne was a young woman wearing a black suit with a skirt and stockings with black hair styled into a bun held in place by two large needles.
The limo pulled forward while the passenger in the back placed one hand on his right ear before speaking into a concealed microphone on his person.
"This is K0 to other units," the man in the blue suit spoke, "B1, what is the status of the others?"
Parked three miles away from the private estate where the party was taking place at, which was just seven miles outside of the small town of Gottlieben, Switzerland. A white van, lacking windows in the back, was parked in the ruins of an abandoned vineyard, but inside the vehicle was a computer terminal with a keyboard, three monitors and a powerful transmitter and receiver set up outside. Sitting behind the computers was a young sixteen-year-old teenager with brown hair and green eyes. He wore a blue mao style suit with a black glove covering his left hand. The boy was Japanese as was the young woman who sat in the driver's seat of the van keeping watch.
The woman was around the same age if not slightly holder with long brown hair styled into two long ponytails alongside her face with plum eyes wearing a pink sweatshirt with a white shirt underneath with blue jeans.
"B1 here," Yukiya Naruse answered, "everything is proceeding as planned we are forty seconds ahead of schedule. Knights one and two have infiltrated the mansion and reached the security room."
"What of B2, P3, P4, and P5?"
"They are on schedule, ETA ten minutes."
"Roger that," K0 answered, "I'll proceed as planned, await my signal."
Yukiya grinned, "I'll be ready when I detect your signal. In the meantime, I'll lighten security for all of you to make moving around a lot easier."
Inside the four-story European-style mansion, three black-uniformed security guards laid dead in the computer monitor lined room four Japanese youths were standing in. One of them was a seventeen-year-old young man with spiky brown hair and matching eyes. He wore a form-fitting black suit, designed for swimming while also made for use in sub-zero temperatures such as the waters by the mansion's boathouse. Even though the nighttime conditions gave them an advantage, it had also made the waters of the Rhine River virtually frozen over.
The other two were dressed in identical gear, one of them was a young man with rusty brown hair, and light brown eyes with a slightly tanned complexion. Besides him, there was a young woman with shoulder-length black hair and pink eyes, and finally, the fourth member was a young woman with short brown hair and matching eyes with a fair skin complexion, she and the other were planting devices around critical areas of the room.
Thankfully the four prepared teens had the equipment and tools needed to cut their way through the gates that extended below the water's surface of the small dock for the mansion using a specialized cutting torch. Once they were inside, they cautiously cut their way out of the thin ice sheet that allowed them to climb up to the dock before hiding by the boathouse. It took them a while, but the four had managed to infiltrate their way into the security room having memorized a map of the mansion and the grounds they were given for planning tonight's operation.
Knowing the guard's routes and Yukiya having managed to hack into their security cameras were invaluable, but now with their help, Yukiya had full access to their security systems by seizing the security room via a remote transmitter the duo had installed for him.
"The last bomb is set and ready once we have finished our job here," a female voice reported.
"Nicely done Ayano," Ryo Sayama complimented.
"Hey don't forget about us," The second boy in the room, Hiroto, said before gesturing with his finger to his partner the girl with short brown hair Fukumi.
Aside from their suits, they were carrying various pouches that held tools and weapons, but Ayano had brought a waterproof bag filled with remote bombs to plant inside the security room once they secured it.
"K1, K2, R1, and R2 have secured the security room and are holding position," Yukiya reported to their leader.
"Good work, just hold your positions until the package arrives. Report any changes in the meantime; Q-1 and I will begin phase two."
"Everything is going smoothly," the young woman behind Dufresne noted.
"Maybe, but stay on your toes."
Mr. Dufresne, followed by the young woman acting as his secretary ascended a large staircase in the mansion foyer seemingly to inspect the pieces of art and paintings decorating the hallways of the second floor. He was mindful of acting casual and avoiding doing anything that would make him appear suspicious in the eyes of anyone who might be observing him.
"I'll wait here and keep an eye on things as planned," The young woman offered before Mr. Dufresne nodded before she went to begin examining the paintings and artwork on display while discreetly watching for anyone.
Upon nearing a pair of double doors leading into the mansion's study, Mr. Dufresne waited for an opportunity before slipping into the study. After confirming that no one was going to enter the room behind him, the blonde haired man opened a pair of doors leading out to the balcony.
Looking down Mr. Dufresne observed some guards patrolling the grounds below, but after he was confident their eyes weren't looking up, he quickly climbed onto the stone railing before he began scaling the walls of the structure. He was fortunate that the stone bricks making up the mansion provided secure places for his hands and feet, allowing him to begin climbing up to the balcony directly above him. The climb was challenging, but only because he wasn't naturally athletic by any means and his success was only ensured because of the ease he found places for his feet and hands to grab hold of allowing him to climb up.
After pulling himself over the stone railing above the balcony he was on Mr. Dufresne was exhausted, so he took a few moments to rest before regaining his strength.
Upon entering the room beyond the balcony, thankful to find the doors were not locked, Mr. Dufresne was inside a large and spacious office with bookshelves, a large ornate wooden desk with a computer on top of it. Mr. Dufresne knelt down, finding the computer desktop before removing a small device from his coat, which he plugged in into a port on the back of the computer before powering on it and the transmitter.
Mr. Dufresne was careful to make sure the computer's holographic monitor was turned off, so if anyone walked it in, no one would notice what was happening.
"B1, are you receiving the signal?"
"Yes, I am," Yukiya replied with a devious smile, "I need a few minutes to crack these files, then I'll begin downloading everything."
"Roger that," K0 replied, "I'll return to the party below and await word for the arrival of the package."
He was not looking forward to climbing down again, but Mr. Dufresne knew if he attempted to return from the third floor, he would be noticed by the guards inside who were tasked with preventing entry to the upper levels. Nevertheless, he steeled himself, and the man who went by the name Mr. Dufresne began climbing back down, but upon being close enough, he merely leaped onto the balcony before slipping back inside.
"Q1, how is the hallway?"
"All clear you can come out," Q-1 replied.
Thankfully no one was inside the study, but as he walked to the double doors leading back out to the hallway.
Descending the stairs Mr. Dufresne, accompanied by Q-1, rejoined the crowd and began acting causal waiting word from Yukiya when the package would arrive at the mansion, but he was waiting for confirmation for when Yukiya succeeded in hacking into the private computer of the mansion's owner, Hugo Strandberg. Hugo is a wealthy industrialist and weapons manufacturer who is a high ranking member of the European Mafia with strong ties to both the military and politicians within the United Republic of Europia.
As Mr. Dufresne causally observed a group of partygoers chatting and talking, but he was concerned that unless he found someone to mingle with, he could draw some attention to himself. Scanning the room as he began walking through the foray towards a grand ballroom, a young woman dressed in a blue and black military uniform trimmed with red drew his attention. She wore a white dress shirt with a black tie that matched the skirt she wore along with the thigh-high heeled boots she wore.
What caught his eye was the book she was reading, which Mr. Dufresne, followed by his secretary, saw someone to mingle with and blend in until it was time for the final phase of their plan.
"Guilbert's Essays on Tactics," The blonde haired man began getting the attention of the girl who was leaning against a wall reading the book in question. "A good choice for a Major of the military to read, but you don't seem to be the partying type."
The young woman blinked at him in surprise, but Mr. Dufresne noted.
"If you haven't already, I would suggest reading Sun Tzu."
Standing close to her, the blonde haired young man saw that the woman in front of him was five inches shorter than he was. Nevertheless, she was a beautiful young woman with waist-length light blonde hair with some of it styled into two egg-shaped buns on top of her head with mauve eyes and a fair skin complexion.
"I already have," the young woman answered with a French accent, "and you are?"
"Forgive me I am Sean Dufresne, and this is my secretary Miss Quatra," Mr. Dufresne replied apologizing with a polite bow, and his companion did the same after Dufresne introduced her.
"Major Leila Malcal," Leila replied, introducing herself.
"A pleasure to meet someone with an appreciation for intriguing literature," Mr. Dufresne complimented.
"Likewise I am sure," Leila replied politely, but there was a hint of indifference in her voice.
Mr. Dufresne didn't seem bothered by it, but his conversation with her was serving its purpose as he was able to blend in.
"I am sure being here isn't an enjoyable experience for you?"
"No, it isn't it," Leila admitted, "it's more of an expectation for my presence here."
"K0, I've cracked the files, and I am downloading everything now," Yukiya said triumphantly. "Even better news the package will be here within the next few minutes."
"Then I apologize for your taking your time," Sean said before excusing himself.
Once he was out of earshot and notice from anyone, Sean tapped his earpiece, "Excellent, I am moving into position."
Mr. Dufresne made his way towards the back of the mansion where two guards dressed in suits blocked off the passageway to a small storage warehouse that was connected to the villa through a tunnel. The tunnel cut underground while the warehouse itself appeared to be much smaller, but this was due to it being partially underground to make the estate as a whole to look more picturesque.
"Hold it," one of the guards ordered, "this area is off limits, sir."
"I am Mr. Sean Dufresne," Sean said before explaining, "Mr. Strandberg is expecting me in the warehouse because we have a matter of business to discuss. Is it alright if my secretary accompanies us?"
The guard exchanged glances before speaking into a concealed microphone in his coat.
"Yes, Mr. Strandberg is waiting for you in the warehouse, the truck you promised is just pulling in now. And she can come too," the guard replied, pointing to Miss Quatra.
"Thank you, and I was hoping to time my arrival perfectly."
"Of course, and Mr. Strandberg expresses his appreciation for the consideration. He's waiting," the guard said as he stepped aside to allow the blonde haired man and his companion to pass.
"I appreciate it."
The guards opened the door allowing him entry into the tunnel that passed below ground outside the mansion that went straight to the warehouse. The door was closed behind him, but about midway through the hallway, he came across a connecting passageway where he saw Ryo, Hiroto, Fukumi, and Ayano stepped out with the former possessing a big smile on his face.
"Well fancy running into you here," Ryo replied, handing Sean a pistol with a silencer attached before giving him a small cylinder-like device that was the size of a pen. Ayano handed Miss Quatra a small gun with its own silencer, and a knife meant for close quarters fighting who proceeded to hide the gun in her jacket while the knife she hid under her left sleeve above her hand using a strap to secure its holster.
"Are you four ready?"
"Of course," Ayano replied, taking the safety off of the submachine gun she carried, which also had its own silencer attached to it. Ryo was holding a similar weapon since their plan demanded that they had to be quiet and avoid as much attention as possible. Hiroto was armed with a modified assault rifle with its own silencer as was Fukumi.
"Once I set this off take out the targets," Sean reminded the two, "did you scout out the package?"
"Yeah, and it looks like we only need Mr. Strandberg's handprint to open it," Ryo answered.
"Alright, let's do this, then."
With Ryo, Hiroto, Fukumi, and Ayano following close behind Sean and Miss Quatra entered the warehouse after opening the door at the end of the passageway, but he left it open allowing Ryo and Ayano a chance to pass through and enter the warehouse. Ryo and Ayano took cover behind some of the metal racks that lined the warehouse filled with several wooden crates and military strongboxes designed for storing weapons and equipment. Hiroto and Fukumi found a forklift and a large container to hide behind nearby. Upon clearing the towering shelves, Sean found Mr. Strandberg in the company of two armed guards, but before meeting the businessman, he took a chance to survey the warehouse.
No other guards and Ayano, Hiroto, Fukumi, and Ryo haven't been noticed anyway it seems.
He didn't know if Strandberg was merely arrogant or just that confident in his security personnel, or both since they had metal detectors and armed guards at the entrances that prevented him from bringing a gun.
"Mr. Dufresne," Hugo Strandberg greeted, offering his hand to the young man, "a pleasure to finally meet you in person."
"Likewise," Sean said, returning the greeting, "I have been looking forward to meeting you as well, especially given tonight's business transaction."
Hugo laughed, "of course, this is quite the big payoff, and I am glad you timed your arrival with the arrival of the merchandise you are offering me."
"I think you will be very pleased with it and more."
Suddenly the truck pulled in and had reserved into the loading dock. The rear trailer of the vehicle connected with the wall outside creating a seal between it and the walls as a means of protecting the secrecy of the cargo and protecting the contents of the transport from the elements outside.
"Let's have a look shall we," Hugo replied as one of his guards went to unlock the back of the truck before lifting the cover to reveal the interior of its trailer.
Very subtly Sean tossed the smaller cylinder towards the opening trailer which caught the attention of Hugo and his guards, but before they could say anything, it released a blinding flash of light. It was a small flashbang that didn't explode, but the light emitters around the top were designed to release a blinding light. Sean and Miss Quatra had closed their eyes just before it went off, so they were unharmed, but the sounds Hugo and his men made were the signal Ryo, and the others were waiting for.
Moving swiftly Ayano and Ryo went through the warehouse ensuring no one else was nearby nor coming to the aid of their boss as Hugo and his guards were gunned down by members of their group who were hidden aboard the truck armed with silent automatic weapons. Hiroto and Fukumi aided their friends aboard the truck before quickly working alongside Ryo and Ayano to ensure the warehouse was secured.
"The warehouse is secured," Ayano said as they approached Sean and three young Japanese teenagers who emerged from the interior of the trailer.
The last member was currently driving the truck was waiting on standby.
"Good work, but now we have to move," Sean said before running to grab a metal cart used for moving large containers. "Load their bodies onto this cart and let's begin dropping off the contents of our vehicle to make room for our quarry."
Ryo and Hiroto quickly helped pile their bodies onto the cart, saving Hugo's corpse for last since they needed him. Meanwhile, Ayano, Miss Quatra, Fukumi, and the other teens began using a forklift they had been hauling in the back of the truck to start moving a large object covered by a black tarp off the vehicle.
"We got three minutes, so let's go," Sean said, starting a stopwatch function on his wristwatch. "Ayano, I'll leave you to supervise things here. Grab any weapons and supplies we can use and start loading the truck."
"Right," Ayano replied as she, Fukumi and another Japanese teen, a tall young man with slick back blonde hair and dark blue eyes named Eisen.
The other two who had disembarked the truck, one was a boy with brown hair and green eyes wearing a heavy blue jacket and a white dress shirt with jeans named Akio. His friend, Chiyo, a girl had long black hair styled into a long braid she wore over her right shoulder with a blue cap on her head and a blue jacket with matching pants and a white shirt.
Sean, Hiroto, and Ryo worked together to move the cart as the later directed them to where the vault was located. Using the passageway, they traveled under the mansion where the hall served as both as a possible escape route for Hugo, but also a means of secretly moving whatever he kept in the vault to the warehouse.
This only worked to their advantage, given how security was more focused on the exterior than the interior.
Hiroto holstered his rifle, allowing him, to operate a small electric cart used to move heavy objects, which they were sure they would need once they opened the vault.
"There it is," Ryo replied parking the metal cart by a large, heavy metal door with a biometric scanner attached to the wall next to the door.
"Alright," Sean replied before moving Hugo's hand onto the reader, causing it to glow green for a moment.
A loud clicking sound was heard before the heavy metal door was unlocked and started to open automatically.
Once Hugo's vault was open, Sean, and Ryo stepped inside, finding it filled with gold bars. The shelves were loaded with paintings, and various artifacts were stored in the room. Neither one was an expert on antiques, yet the idea Hugo would keep such items in his personal vault was a clear indication that the objects must be priceless.
"Let's load as much gold as we can onto the cart and then we'll take the paintings and jewels stored in here. I am sure they will fetch a good price," Sean ordered as Hiroto followed them into the vault pushing the cart. After dumping the bodies in the vault, the trio worked fast to load the cart with whatever they could load onto it.
The group cut it close, but after three minutes Ryo, Sean, and Hiroto returned to the warehouse with their electric cart carrying as many gold bars it could take with seven valuable paintings on top while Ryo and Sean were taking the precious jewelry they discovered inside the vault. Upon arrival, Ayano had finished loading the trailer of the semi truck with as many weapons and military supplies and equipment they could load while ensuring they left room for Ryo and the others along with the contents of the vault.
"Alright, let's load up and leave," Sean ordered before speaking into his earpiece, "P1 we are finished here. Leave and meet us at the rendezvous point."
"Roger that," the limo driver replied before departing from the parking area set aside for limo drivers and their vehicles.
Like K-0, P1 wore a disguise, but under the mask, he was a young man of seventeen with copper hair and blue eyes with a fair skin complexion named Bunta.
"All aboard," Ryo shouted joyfully, "let's get moving before the security shift change."
Closing the semi truck's trailer once they were all on board and everything was secured.
"K0 to P5 we're all onboard, so move out."
"Understood, hold on!" P5 replied.
The last male member of the group, Gakuto was a black-haired young man with dark blue eyes with a small scar on his cheek.
The truck started up before it pulled out of the loading dock as the automatic system had sealed the door, but even if someone entered the three bodies had been left inside the vault, and it would probably take some time before anyone found them.
Ryo and the others waited nervously, but the truck was able to depart the estate without incident as it began making a beeline for the nearest road leading to Germany. Yukiya was already leaving to depart for the same rendezvous point as the others.
Inside the truck's trailer, Sean began unbuttoning the top of his tuxedo before pulling on his face to tear off the human-like mask he had been wearing modeled after the man known as Sean Dufresne who, unknown to many, had an unfortunate run-in with their group a few days ago. The same thing befell the actual owners of the truck they were in after a tip from a reliable source about a window of opportunity for tonight's mission.
Once the mask was removed, the seventeen-year-old teen pulled off the white cap, he wore to compress his black hair before using a free hand to wipe the sweat from his brow.
"How was it wearing that mask Lelouch," Ryo asked addressing their leader by his real name.
"It was unpleasant and hot," Lelouch Lamperouge answered as he removed the contacts that disguised his natural amethyst eyes.
"Small price to pay," Ryo replied with a cocky smile.
Lelouch returned the smile, "I suppose that is true."
"I wouldn't be too sure about that," Lelouch's supposed secretary said as she removed the wig she had been wearing before pulling off the skin-like mask she had been wearing eager to be free of it.
Once the disguise was gone, she quickly styled her long orange hair back to her preferred style, which was a top-do ponytail and her contacts removed revealed her brown eyes. Unlike Ryo she was a Britannian similar to Lelouch except she was actually half-blood, a half-Britannian and half-Spaniard being the result of a Britannian mother who fled from her family of born nobility who tried to force an arranged marriage before fleeing to Spain where she got married starting a family.
"I was dying in that thing," Marirrosa Noriega complained before Ayano handed her a towel to wipe her forehead clean of sweat before being offered a bottle of water.
Ryo merely laughed, "come on now you survived, so suck it up."
Marirrosa glared at Ryo while Lelouch merely found the scene amusing.
"We completed our mission, so hopefully we won't have to use those masks again anytime soon."
Marirrosa was a recent addition to their group who was the sole survivor of the Star of Madrid, a resistance group based in Spain when it was conquered by Britannia during a surprise attack almost two years ago. However, about six months ago Britannia was forced out by the United Republic of Europia who didn't want a rival superpower they were at war with so close to their capital in France. However, retaking Spain was not without very significant costs.
One was that they had to pull troops from military fronts in Russia and in Africa allowing Britannia to claim more of the territory with half of Africa under Britannia's control and the complete loss of Russia to the Euro-Britannians having fought them for years to keep them from conquering the rest. But for Marirrosa, the cost of freeing her homeland was a heavy and personal one for her. Her older brother, Fernando Noriega, the founder and leader of the Star of Madrid, had been killed along with the other members of their resistance group.
It was only because of Lelouch she didn't join her brother.
(May 21st, 2016 A.T.B.)
"What do you mean you won't be going," Marirrosa arguing with her brother who was four years older than her.
Fernando was a handsome man who looked identical to his younger sister with the only difference was the attire. Fernando wore an outfit that was primarily red trimmed with gold that bore similarities to a Matador with black boots and a long yellow sash. His sister, Marirrosa, was dressed in similar themed and colored attire including the same sash and boots, but her attire was more revealing showing her lower torso and some of her cleavage coupled with hugging her voluptuous figure.
During his time with their group, Lelouch didn't understand why they chose to dress in such outfits instead of using more attire that wasn't so bright, which would draw attention too quickly.
Sometimes Mr. Lamperouge theatrics is a useful tool for inspiring those you wish to liberate if they believe you to be something more than a man then they will follow you, The words of Fernando echoed in his mind when Lelouch asked him out their group's outfits.
Still, Lelouch had his doubts…
"I need you and Lelouch to leave because it's going to be hell within the next few hours."
"Why aren't the E.U. army here to liberate us?"
Both Lelouch and Fernando possessed solemn expressions on their faces, which was because of the information had obtained through hacking and his other skills allowing him to deduce something worrying about the way the E.U. army was moving their troops and the heavy weapons they were bringing to bear.
"They do intend to liberate Spain, but how they intend to do it is concerning, to say the least," Lelouch admitted grimly.
"The sheer amount of heavy artillery and bombers they are bringing isn't something you bring for liberation its something you bring when you intend to completely destroy something," Fernando explained.
"The E.U. Army is desperate, I have heard they pulled a lot of troops from their fronts in Russia and Southern Africa," Lelouch added.
"Indeed, but they are playing right into Britannia's hands," Fernando pointed out.
"Your brother and I believe the only reason Britannia has occupied Spain was solely to force the E.U. to pull troops from its major fronts in a desperate bid to drive Britannia out. Otherwise, why haven't they made Spain into a proper Area like the other countries they have conquered," Lelouch explained which was the only conclusion.
Unlike other countries, Britannia has conquered Spain wasn't formally declared an Area like Japan was, which was odd but not unusual especially when its part of a larger landmass. However, the lack of colonization and more of stripping Spain was the apparent signs that Britannia isn't expecting to hold Spain for long, which could only mean…they didn't intend on holding onto Spain.
"The politicians in charge of the E.U. are likely in a huge panic demanding they retake Spain just to keep Britannia away from France, and the military knowing they could lose two of their most important fronts are just trying to retake Spain as quickly as possible even if it means devastating parts of it."
"That's crazy," Marirrosa commented.
"That's politics," Lelouch remarked coldly.
"We'll do what we can, but I cannot say if we'll survive."
"Then you should leave," Lelouch urged.
"He's right brother, don't do this!"
"We cannot abandon the people, which is the reason we chose to fight the oppressors who conquered our land, but," Fernando said before hesitating, "as a brother, I cannot let you die."
"I can't let you die either," Marirrosa said with tears forming.
"I know," Fernando said before embracing his sister in a tender hug, "but…the older sibling must do what is best for his younger sibling."
Suddenly Marirrosa felt something poke her lower back on her exposed skin before realizing her own brother had injected her with a tranquilizer he had hidden in his sleeve.
Lelouch was shocked by what Fernando did, but he reacted quickly before Marirrosa hit the ground by catching her.
"Lelouch, please take care of my sister."
"Why did you do that," Lelouch said cradling Marirrosa's unconscious body.
"As someone with a younger sibling, you of all people should know why I did it. Wouldn't you have done the same for your sister?"
For once, Lelouch didn't have an answer.
"You both should leave now…"
"You have to live on, and remember what you learned because I think you can change the world someday."
"That is my goal once I destroy Britannia," Lelouch pointed out.
"Destruction can bring about creation, and remember if you do not want people to see your face then create a new face that isn't a man but something more. A man can be silenced and destroyed, but create something greater than a man, and you'll have followers greater than any resistance group because symbols and legends don't fall easily."
Lelouch pondered those words for a moment until "and what do I tell her when she wakes up?"
"Give her this," Fernando said, handing Lelouch a letter he had in his coat. "Now go and remember you are always an honorary member of our group."
After leaving Marirrosa would come to and to her horror would realize the worst had come to past, in their aggressive campaign to retake Spain. The E.U. army had devastated most of Spain leaving towns and cities in ruin, but even worse was the fact the E.U. had lost most of Africa and the rest of Russia to Britannia earning nothing more than a pyrrhic victory.
With no one left for her and no home to return to Marirrosa vowed to follow Lelouch, although it was no surprise it took her some time to recover.
I am one step closer to making that dream a reality because I'll have everything I'll need soon, Lelouch thought as his mind returned to the present.
An hour would pass before people began asking of the whereabouts of the party's host, which led to security to start a search of the estate for the missing Hugo. Upon entering the security room when their calls to them were met by a pre-recorded message, created by Ayano, Hiroto, Fukumi, and Ryo before they eliminated the security guards inside the room. It was thanks to some remote help from Yukiya using a digital recorder they had brought with them.
Once they walked inside the bombs left behind by Ayano and the others detonated, which triggered the giant bomb the group had left behind in the warehouse setting its interior ablaze which was made worse thanks to the various weapons and military arms stored inside.
No one had found Hugo Strandberg that evening thanks to the chaos caused by the explosions, but regardless Lelouch, Ryo, and the others had crossed the border into Germany before the sunrise.
It was close to ten in the morning by the time the group parked the truck at an old warehouse six miles outside of Sigmaringen, which the group despite being tired began loading a similar semi truck with different markings, color, and plates with everything they had taken from Strandberg. Using the chance those who had no tasks seized the opportunity to rest, which included Lelouch who changed out of his tuxedo and into more casual clothing consisting of a white dress shirt with black pants.
Lelouch had found an old sofa to use as a temporary bed while leaving the mattress the warehouse had left over to use as more proper beds to rest on after throwing some plastic over them for the others.
As he slept, Lelouch's mind dreamed of that moment seven years ago when his life as a former prince of the Holy Britannian Empire, Lelouch vi Britannia, ended and Lelouch Lamperouge began. His demise was necessary because had he lived Lelouch and his younger sister would've been used as political tools that would've ended with their deaths as casualties of imperial ambition.
His mother, Empress Marianne vi Britannia, was one such victim with his young sister almost becoming one as well.
Or so he believed based on the fact the men responsible were never caught and had breached some of the highest security measures put in place.
Angered, Lelouch went to his father to demand why nothing more was being done to apprehend those responsible for his mother's death. At the end of their conversation, Lelouch was exiled to Japan along with his sister. Nunnally had been rendered crippled by gunshot wounds to the legs and blinded by the trauma of her mother's demise forcing Lelouch to care for her on his own.
He and Nunnally were to serve as little more than political bargaining tools between Japan and Britannia, but after several months of trying living conditions, Britannia and Japan went to war with the other. In one month Japan had lost becoming Area 11, a dominion of the Empire having wholly ignored the fact Lelouch and Nunnally were still in the country.
It did open the door for an opportunity for Lelouch.
"I swear Suzaku, so help me," a ten-year-old Lelouch spoke to the one and only person he befriended in Japan. "That one day, I'll obliterate Britannia!"
Suzaku Kururugi, the son of Japan's last Prime Minister, looked at his friend in stunned silence. He had brown hair and green eyes wearing a faded red dress shirt with a green tie and jeans while Lelouch wore a white dress shirt with red suspenders and black pants.
"Your Highness," a man who was twenty-two years of age with brownish-blonde hair and bluish-green eyes wearing a black suit said, "it's time to go."
Lelouch was hesitant but complied, and it would be the last conversation shared between the two friends for years to come.
Later that same evening aboard a private yacht located out in the middle of Toyko Bay as the Britannian Army had finished securing the area and beyond as the occupation and colonialist were already moving in to begin reshaping Area 11 to suit the needs of the Empire. Inside a small room below deck, Lelouch was called alone to meet with the older man who had picked up his sister and himself on behalf of the Ashford Family who was taking them in.
They intended to use the siblings as liability insurance and not out of some form of kindness to shelter them.
"Your Highness," the man began, but Lelouch quickly cut him off.
"Stop calling me that! We're supposed to be dead."
"I suppose that is true," the man replied before correcting himself, "then Lelouch is what you said to that young man true. Your vow to destroy Britannia?"
Lelouch seemed nervous at first, but the man raised a hand.
"Do not worry, but in truth, I wish to help you if you are indeed serious."
"What do you mean?"
"You know who I am, right?"
"Yes you are Oiaguro Zevon," Lelouch said, recognizing the man who had been responsible for covering up their deaths on behalf of the Ashford Family. "The younger brother of the head of the Zevon Family."
"That is correct, but did you know the head of the Zevon Family is the leader of an organization called Pluton who has carried out black operations and assassinations for the Royal Family for generations," Oiaguro pointed out causing a look of surprise to appear on Lelouch's face.
"Wait, were you sent to," Lelouch began to ask as realization dawned on him.
Oiaguro nodded, "yes, I was sent to kill you, but I decided to defy that order because I have grown to dislike how my own family and even Britannia conducts itself."
"Are you serious," Lelouch asked with a suspicious expression.
"That's good. You should be suspicious and mindful of others." Oiaguro praised before adopting a more serious expression. "My point is I can't do anything about it, especially given my position within my own family and Pluton where I help with technical details and cover-ups. However, I can arrange for you to receive training and care from someone who can help you to one day fulfill that vow or at least prepare you for it."
"What do you get out of this?"
"Think of it as mutual gain," Oiaguro answered. "I will help you provide training and preparation to become someone who with the right people and resources to engineer Britannia's downfall, and in exchange, we help each other towards destroying the system and world Britannia is that we despise. If you prove capabilities, I can use my position to provide intelligence and support in whatever form I can provide."
Lelouch wasn't convinced prompting a question, "Let's say I believe you, but how can I be sure you won't double cross me?"
"My orders were to kill you, so if people find out you are alive, then I would be as good as dead if anyone discovered you were alive. Nevertheless with you declared dead you have much more freedom to move around and given what you can still lose, I know that will instill a sense of caution in you," Oiaguro answered.
Lelouch was hesitant to trust Oiaguro, but the older man noticed this and asked.
"Besides how far do you think you'll get on your own in the care of the Ashford Family?"
The young man didn't want to admit it, but if Lelouch wanted a chance to destroy Britannia and get revenge for what befell him, his sister and his mother, then he had little choice.
"Alright, so what happens, then?"
"You and Nunnally will be moved to Area 8 for the time being. There is a friend of mines who trained new recruits to Pluton who lives in retirement there. He will teach you what you need, including how to survive and the skills you'll need, but the rest will be up to you."
In the five years that followed Oiaguro had been true to his word as the friend who cared for him and Nunnally began teaching Lelouch everything he would need to one day lead a rebellion against Britannia. The only problem that arose was the fact that Lelouch wasn't very athletically inclined, which was an issue that plagued him throughout his childhood. This made learning any forms of close quarters combat difficult, but Lelouch made up for it by becoming skilled with firearms of various types, computer hacking and Knightmare Frame piloting after their introduction that played a role in Japan's conquest.
At the age of fifteen, Lelouch, with Oiaguro's help began freelancing as a mercenary through the terrorist deployment organization known as Peace Mark under a different alias to prevent his true identity from being discovered. However, Lelouch avoided being on the front lines and kept to small operations such as using his skills to steal information using his hacking skills and then selling it. The jobs he earned through selling the information he took helped, but few jobs required someone of his skill set.
This is what led him meeting Fernando and joining his resistance group initially as an aid to help collect intelligence for their group before Fernando discovered Lelouch's natural talent for strategic planning and soon involved him in planning raids and operations for their resistance group. Following the end of the Star of Madrid group, Lelouch and Marirrosa would travel together using their combined skills to complete contracts as mercenaries until events lead them to meet Ryo and his group.
He had left on his journey back in March while his absence in school was written off as being on a long internship, which Oiaguro provided the proper cover up. The hardest part was that Lelouch had to leave Nunnally behind despite Oiaguro's assurances no harm would befall her, although it was extremely difficult to leave his sister alone for months Lelouch had to do this to gain what he would need for his war with Britannia. Lelouch wanted to conclude his business on this side of the world as quickly as possible, but thankfully he could return home soon.
"Hey Lelouch," Ayano said nudging Lelouch awake.
"Ugh," The young man muttered as he began to wake up.
"Everyone is rested, and you said to wake you when everyone was ready."
"Right," Lelouch said as he was still waking up while waiting for his vision to clear, "what time is it?"
"It's after six, and the truck has been loaded." Ayano replied, handing Lelouch an apple as an unofficial breakfast, "we got rid of the other truck already."
"Excellent now we need to plan out our next move and our final mission in the EU," Lelouch said as he sat up on the sofa before biting into the apple.
After taking a moment to freshen up and finishing the apple, Ayano provided the two teens joined Ryo, Marirrosa, and Yukiya downstairs in one of the smaller offices they had converted into a temporary planning room.
"First, I want to say a job well done, but this was merely a prelude to the true operation." Lelouch began joining the meeting.
"I don't know, we made off like kings last night," Ryo said before adopting a concerned expression, "you might as well try invading heaven's gate compared to this plan. Do we have to do it?"
"Its riskier than what we accomplished last night," Lelouch said in agreement, "nay it's the riskiest of the missions we have ever done. However, I believe the pay off will be worth it to go along with everything we have so far."
"It will be impressive if it's pulled off, but this is a heavily guarded military installation we are talking about," Marirrosa argued with both arms folded across her chest.
"Don't worry the plan will work with Yukiya's help," Lelouch said boldly while gesturing to their resident computer hacker, "I trust everything we needed was in those files?"
"That and more, including the guy who goes in and out of the target we just need to intercept," Yukiya replied.
"Cleaning out his bank accounts wasn't enough," Ryo mused as Yukiya had spent a good part of the evening once they had escaped using Hugo's financial files to begin cleaning out his personal bank accounts. Yukiya used various plots and methods to move the money around a dozen ghost accounts before relocating it into a dozen different accounts the hacker created to be recovered and transferred to a particular account for future plans.
"Are you kidding once we make a little withdrawal at the banks I divided his fortune amongst we'll be rich, and that's not even counting how much that gold and antiquities we swiped," Yukiya pointed out triumphantly.
"Technically ever since we began working with Lelouch we have been coming into a lot more money than we would've, the mercenary life has been good all things considered," Ayano offered which led to others among the group agreeing as well.
Ryo wasn't sure how to respond, but given what laid ahead Lelouch couldn't blame him for his concerns especially since he saw all eleven members of the group he had formed with Yukiya and Ayano as a family.
"I won't force any of you to take part in this mission, but given the discussion, I should ask, do you all wish to follow me?" Lelouch asked before he elaborated further, "after this I plan on returning to Area 11 full time to begin building the army I shall use to liberate Japan so I can build a nation that will crush Britannia."
"And when you liberate Japan," Yukiya asked.
"It will be a new nation because the old Japan is gone forever, so I intend to build something better in its place. It can not only be a home for all of you but maybe a place for people without a place to call home they can belong to," Lelouch answered before adopting a solemn expression. "However that being said the risks are that some of you getting killed or worse can happen, so if any of you want out you still have a chance. You'll get your share from tonight's operations as a thank you, which should be enough to set you up for life."
Lelouch would be stupid not to consider the worst-case scenario since trying to build a rebellion with just eleven people, plus himself didn't seem like the building blocks for an uprising to topple of a mighty empire. No matter what assurances he could give Lelouch knew some of those who had joined Ryo's group before meeting the former prince would end up dead by the time his plan succeeds or fails at worst.
After a moment of silence, Ryo grinned, "I guess no one wants to leave, so we're in it to the end, I suppose."
"I told you that I am with you until the end Lelouch," Marirosa said reminding Lelouch of the promise they made to one another to allow the latter to keep Fernando's promise of looking after Marirrosa.
"Thank you," Lelouch said with a smile, "then let's get started. Ryo you'll take the others and everything we took to the airfield north of Sigmaringen where a cargo plane will be waited prepared by Wizard. You'll fly to India and obtain what we need for recovery once Ayano, Marirrosa, and I complete our task."
"I guess we get the easy part."
"Just make sure you are at the pickup point, but in the meantime, Ayano, Marirrosa, Yukiya and I will travel to Offenburg that sits close to the border between Germany and France," Lelouch explained unrolling a map of a castle and the surrounding grounds. "As we wait for you to reach India, we'll carry out Yukiya's plan to move the money we cleaned out from Hugo Strandberg into a more secure account for later use. Then we'll take out the target so I can assume his identity, allowing Ayano, Marirrosa and me to infiltrate Castle Weisswolf."
"Just like last night I'll support you two from the outside by hacking into the castle, but you two will need to give me remote access using this," Yukiya said holding up a small device. "I can only do so much from the outside, but for the plan to work, I must have full access."
"Right, so we will make our way to the security room where we'll disable surveillance. Then we should be able to enter the server room for the computer network that runs through the entire castle where we can set up the transmitter," Lelouch said as he went over the map using a finger to trace their intended path.
"Our jobs are to protect you if we run into complications," Ayano said exchanging glances with Marirrosa, acknowledging her own role in Lelouch's plan.
"If my plan runs smoothly as last night did then we should hopefully be in and out as long as Yukiya can disable the air defenses, so we don't get shot down during our escape," Lelouch said aware that much of their plan hinged on Yukiya's hacking skills.
"Don't worry, I'll live up to everyone's expectations, but Ayano will help smuggle in the bombs you'll set to provide a distraction for your escape."
"Yes an explosion somewhere in the castle should be enough to draw their attention from us during our escape," Lelouch said in agreement. "Before that, we'll need to steal all data on the target before our escape, and ensure your virus will wipe out anything that could allow them to track our location."
"You can count on me Lelouch, but can you and Ayano and Marirrosa do it?"
"Don't worry Yukiya, we'll steal their new Knightmare Frame, and before we leave expose the commander of the W-0 unit for how corrupt he is on the way out." Lelouch smiled deviously as his most daring plan was laid out, but could they accomplish it was the question.
A/N: Well I'll continue this story if the reception is good and now to answer some obvious questions.
Yes, Oiaguro Zevon is an ally of Lelouch and given the Zevon Family's role as the head is the leader of Pluton I suspect the other members of the family such as Oiaguro probably assist in some lesser capacity. Given how guilty he was over what happened to his nephew given his actions in trying to protect him and Oldrin I thought that perhaps he grew to dislike the way his family conducted itself and how Britannia as a whole operated as a result.
I admit it was difficult without knowing any other details about his life before he took over the Zevon Family and what his motivations were early on, so I do hope it works. Those who I shared the idea with and early drafts of the chapter did find it agreeable.
Where Nunnally is and where things stand with her will be revealed in the next chapter.
Marirrosa Noriega is a new character introduced in Oz of the Reflection as a member of the mentioned resistance group who shares some similarities with Kallen.
Also in trying to keep Lelouch as close to his canon self as possible, although he has been trained and tried his hand at being a mercenary on his own his lack of proper physical fitness was a problem. Lelouch tried to get into suitable shape, but hand to hand combat isn't his thing while he can handle some athletic-related tasks better in canon (such as scaling a mansion with easy to climb walls). On the other hand, he has more experience actually leading a group while being skilled with firearms and piloting a Knightmare Frame, he is no ace, but Lelouch is a more capable pilot than in canon.
The struggle I am facing with this story is keeping things in a realistic context and not giving Lelouch too much of an advantage that would mark him as a Gray Su, which leads to the next part pairings.
For pairings, I am leaning towards Ayano Kosaka and Marirrosa as the main pairing. I might add C.C, but anyone else beyond that I am uncertain of at this time. I'll elaborate more on that in the next chapter.
So I hope you all enjoyed the first chapter and I got a good chunk of chapter two underway, anyway constructive feedback is welcomed.
In the meantime, I am going to update my Danganronpa/Code Geass crossover before posting the next chapter for this one, but if reception is good for this one, I might give this one more focus.