The door to the dojo opened, and Lightsider stopped his combat exercises and looked at the intruder. His blank expression didn't even crack when he saw Nurse Tohru there, war fans in hand. Hers registered surprise, though. Surprise, then grief. Lightsider turned his back to the door and continued his exercises. He caught a glimpse of a blond-haired man behind her as he did. Vorlon, of course. The young man who sometimes worked as a janitor for the UFL.

"G… Gomen," She stuttered, then shut the door.

Tohru and Vorlon walked quickly away from the dojo, not noticing that Will Trent and Nurse EarthStar had seen the whole thing.

Dr. Will Trent made a shushing motion with his hands, and EarthStar nodded. He opened the sliding door to the dojo noiselessly, just a crack, and they both peered through at what was going on inside. Dr. Trent frowned. Even though he and Lightsider had been friends since they met, the week after the Virus attack on the hospital, there were still some things about the man he didn't understand.

The blades were immaterial, forged from Light and thought rather than steel and fire, but they still sang as they flashed through the air. They molded and reshaped themselves at the command of their wielder as he tried to reach into the meditation of the kata.

"How long has he been at it?" the young nurse whispered.

"An hour and a half now," Dr. Trent whispered back. "He's gone for half a day before."

"But why…?"

Dr. Trent's hand touched EarthStar's back lightly, quieting her. "It's all he can do," he said.

The air around his blades hissed as if in pain as the warrior spun and reversed his grip on both swords, thrusting backwards then slashing up again. A small disc of Light appeared on the floor, and Lightsider stepped on it, using it to launch himself upward into a high walkover backflip, wings spread. When he landed, his blades had melded into his hands, becoming Wolverine style claws.

EarthStar fiddled with one of her ever-present bits of duct tape. "I still don't understand what happened."

Will grimaced, then nodded his head at the crack in the door. "That," he said, "is what happens when you let your past get in the way of your future."

Lightsider's style became vastly more aggressive, matching the vicious weapons he now wielded. He spun, stabbed and slashed in a seemingly random berserker fury, yet each motion precisely controlled. The UFL practice dojo was filled with his heavy breathing and the harsh whisper of air meeting Light, but was otherwise silent.

"It was a hard choice, I guess," Will said. "And he chose not to choose."

"He's changed."


Lightsider's kata eased, and became fluid and deceptive, with misdirected strikes and confusing parries.

"I guess I didn't notice until he shattered that fanboy's chest, then refused to help him at all," EarthStar shuddered at the memory.

Will nodded. "He was on probation for a long time for that one. I'm amazed Meagen and Intelli didn't fire him outright…."

Lightsider stopped, breathing hard. His claws reformed into two swords, and he dropped one, letting it dissipate before it hit the ground.

The other he flicked out and behind him, and it lanced into the crack between the door and the jamb. EarthStar squeaked as the molecule-splitting edge cut off a lock of her hair.

"Dammit Lights!" Will raged, throwing open the door. "You could have…."

"I'm not in the mood for spectators," Lightsider said, without turning. "Leave."

Will glared at his fellow doctor's back, then grabbed the shaken EarthStar's arm. "C'mon. Let's go."

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