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Chains of the Heart

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From the first time Naoya Toudou saw Ren Amamiya, he could tell there was something wrong with the boy. It’d been about a year since the Christmas Incident, where people had been disappearing and dying thanks to some deity (as far as Naoya could tell, he and his friends had only been safe thanks to their Personas)... And he’d been on edge ever since.

Seeing this boy as he sat in Leblanc told him exactly why. Amon-Ra was uneasy as soon as he saw him and Naoya could tell why… Satanael, that was the name that came to mind as he stared at the boy… The terrifying aura reminded him of when Reiji had used the Persona Lucifer, only this time? This time it was worse.

“Do you need something, sir?” Ren had smiled at him, head tilted to the side. “You’ve been staring at me since I walked in.”

“Oh, was I?” He did his best to regain his composure. “Sorry, I was just staring off into space.”

Ren’s smile had shifted just slighty at that point and Naoya had felt his blood run cold. “Well, in case you ever decide you do want to stare in the future, I’m Ren Amamiya. You are?”

He hadn’t wanted to give his real name, Amon-Ra’s uneasiness pulling him away from it. “Yuuya Narumi, nice to meet you.” Every word out of his mouth had been a lie and all he’d been able to do was hope Ren wouldn’t catch on.

“Nice to meet you too… Well, I’ll see you around, Narumi-san.” He’d walked away, towards the stairs that Naoya had guessed lead into an attic at that point… So he lived in Leblanc?

Despite his love of the coffee and the fun chatter he made with Sojiro Sakura, Naoya decided then to never go back to the cafe.

--

Maya Amano felt sick to her stomach whenever she thought about her first meeting with Ren Amamiya. On the outside he seemed like a nice enough boy, sure, but… She knew that appearances didn’t really mean shit.

She was supposed to meet with Toranosuke Yoshida, a man who had recently made great strides in recovering himself from a political disgrace years ago. After everything that happened with Tatsuzou Sudou and the New World Order she hadn’t wanted anything to do with politics, but, well… She had to take what jobs she could get.

“I’m sorry, but Yoshida-san is too busy to talk with you today. I’m his assistant, Ren Amamiya… I’ll be doing my best to answer any questions you have instead!” The boy had met her in the lobby with those words, a smile on his face.

A smile that made Maya feel like the Crawling Chaos himself was breathing down her neck.

“Oh really? Too bad, I was hoping to hear from the man himself!” She forced a smile on her face. “I guess you’ll work, though! Hope you know enough about the inner workings of his success to answer these questions!”

“Oh, don’t you worry, I know more than you might expect.” Ren had offered her a hand and Artemis had screamed inside her to not take the hand…

She had taken it anyway. “What a gentleman you are.”

Ren dipped his head down and kissed the back of her hand, she had to use all her willpower to not slap him. “I’ve been told that before, but I feel like everyone just likes to flatter me.”

“Is that so…?”

Maya had kept that smile on her face for the rest of the interview, discomfort growing as she realized that he knew the inner workings of everything a little too well for a college student… It hit a little too close to home and, well… If she could avoid coming to interview Yoshida in the future, she would.

--

 

Aigis was not sure how to feel about Ren Amamiya when Mitsuru introduced him as a new Reserve Member. He had looked nice enough, but the air around him sent her into a defensive state. In a strange way, it reminded her of when she had first seen Ryoji.

Only this time, there was no Makoto to protect and no link to a deity like Nyx. At least, she was fairly certain there was no link… Well, none past the fact he had apparently killed a deity in high school, with the help of his Persona.

He did something not even Elizabeth had been able to do at this point, a woman stronger than anyone else Aigis really knew… Just how dangerous was someone who could destroy Yaldabaoth so easily?

“Aigis-san, you haven’t looked me in the eyes once since I got here… Is there an issue?” He tried to sound concerned, but Aigis could hear how fake it really was.

“I am not sure I trust someone with so much power…” She put a hand to her chest. “Even the stronger person I know-- I knew… He was unable to destroy something like Yaldabaoth, only able to seal it away, at the cost of his life…”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Ren frowned, a hand on his hip.

Aigis looked him in the eyes for the first time, the usual emotion in her face gone. “Someone with so much power should be dead.”

“You wound me, Aigis-san!” He put a hand on his own chest. “Maybe I’m just stronger than this guy.”

Aigis said nothing, instead just staring at him for a few moments. She was more sure about how she felt now. There was something wrong with Ren Amamiya and she didn’t trust him, not one bit.

She was ready to remove him if he proved himself a danger, though a voice in her heart seemed to cry out to her. Please, be careful…

--

Yu Narukami could feel another journey about to start when he ran into Ren Amamiya. He’d been through enough that it was pretty easy to tell at this point, honestly… And it was almost upsetting to see that the person giving him this feeling as a human, just like him… If he knew anything, that meant there was a deity behind the scenes.

He was worried about the boy when he realized that, honestly. Even if he ended up doing bad things, ended up showing himself to be a person with more issues than one would expect… He was worried. It was sure to leave him broken when all was said and done.

“Excuse me.” He approached the younger man and held out his hand. “I’m Yu Narukami, it’s nice to meet you.”

Ren had rose an eyebrow, but taken the hand. “Ren Amamiya… Strange, most people just stare at me or wait until I approach them first.”

“I’ve always been pretty personable, if I’m being honest with you.” Yu gave him a smile. “I can’t tell if that’s a good or bad thing, of course, but…”

It had already begun to fall apart and Yu didn’t know what to do. He’d honestly partially approached the man in hopes he could guide him away from the dark path he was making his way for… Was it just not possible to intercept it early?

Was he really destined to have to fight this man to save him?

“I see…” Ren pulled his hand away from Yu’s and gave a fake smile. “Well, next time maybe you should try to have something prepared to say. Being able to talk to someone is important when you’re personable, after all.”

“Yeah, you’re right… Sorry for just coming up like this.” Yu rubbed the back of his head and frowned.

It really looked like he was going to have to fight him if he wanted to get anywhere in the end… Dammit.

--

Ren Amamiya felt like he was flying high and had felt like that for years now. Without the chains around his heart, he felt like he could do anything, get anywhere… And nothing like silly societal rules could stop him.

Sure, he’d kind of run into a few issues (and by issues, he’d meant adults and a damn robot that seemed to know something was up with him), but… There wasn’t really an issue. Not really… None of them seemed like they could stand up to him.

“This’ll be easy…” He chuckled, running a hand through his hair. “It’s just a matter of time, now…”

He had his friends and confidants now, it was only a matter of time before he took the world by storm. There was nothing holding him back and he was going to make it to the top. He’d just have to be ready to take down any corruption getting in his way.

And oh, was he ready.