A young boy crashed into a pile a trash bins behind the school. “Thanks for today’s allowance.” one of the three larger teenagers laughed as he waved a few large notes in his hand.
The three large teens walked off laughing, leaving behind the smaller guy, battered and empty handed.
This is the seventh time it has happened. I come to school, and every time they would come can take what little I have from my wallet forcefully. I worked all summer to support myself, all gone in an instant. In school, I was always the one being picked on. I am the target from practically almost every second year and third year students of Raven High. I’m only fifteen years old, and I’m still weak and fragile.
Adam is my name, and I moved to the Rustic City, named after a man’s home town I heard, to start a new life. I moved away from my family and my life of comfort to pursue my dreams here. I wanted to become someone who would always do the right thing without using violence.
Sometimes…I feel that being right and not using violence is the reason for getting myself picked on. I am sick of my life here…yet I heard of an old rumor that who ever works hard here in this city…can fulfill their dreams. That’s right…I have a dream, and that’s to be a man of justice. I wanted to be part of the world’s greatest Organization that protects this world. Justice, the organization that changed, merge and built a new system of policy to help govern this world properly and maintain peace and harmony. I wanted to be a part of it. But to get there, takes more then just a good education, and I hope that I could step in one day, and become a respectful man, holding the rank of Celestial, a powerful rank.
Yeah, it’s a far-fetched dream. A weakling like me being bullied wanting to be a man of justice who can protect, to be a Celestial that is as equal of rank to that of an Admiral…but look at me.
Being bullied was a past, but now I stand here, 26 years old, a Celestial of the Military, youngest to ever hold the rank of Celestial and also a man of respect. I look at the white coat over my shoulders that touches the ground. With seven golden eagles pined on my coat that symbolizes my successes as a Celestial. I can never thank enough for how much those people have helped me. Those people…who truly taught me the meaning…of Justice. Those people…who weren’t even police, or military or even marines. They were more and above all that. The first time I met one of them…is when my life started to change. This is my story, of how I became a Celestial, thanks to a few people who got me to where I am.
“Wake up Adam!” a girl voice shouted.
A book flew and struck the head of a teenager in short black hair. The guy mumbled and scratched his head, looking sleepy.
A girl in a black skirt and long sleeve T looked at Adam angrily. “It’s your turn to clean up the class. Everyone has already left and you’re still dozing off?”
Adam rubbed his eyes and looked at the brown hair girl in pig-tails.
The girl in front of me is my class leader of 1-F and her name is Grace. She’s fierce, head strong, and the only person who’s willing to talk to me.
Adam tiredly got up and Grace threw a broom at him. “Pick up the pace if you want to get home early.”
“Ok, ok.” Adam grumbled.
Fifteen minutes went by and Adam is now wide awake, cleaning up the classroom with Grace. Thirty minutes went by and Adam is finally done with the class cleaning. He sat on one of the chairs at the back row, watching the orange colored classroom shining golden because of the sun setting. It felt warm and peaceful. Not something Adam felt for awhile since he moved to Rustic City.
Grace stepped into the class and tossed a can of cold coca to Adam, who successfully caught it. “Thanks.” Adam said and took a sip after opening it.
Adam looked at the class layout. From the back. The tables were all separated three feet from one another. Grace was sitting on the teacher’s table and looked at Adam. “You have been here for three months now and you haven’t made a single friend, nor even spoke to anyone.” Grace said. “Are you that hard to mix with? Or are you simply just scared of making friends?”
Adam looked out the window and watched the sun setting and the night soon overtaking the day. “I don’t know.” Adam answered.
“I’ve been observing you since you came, and I notice that you have been picked on and that aren’t sociable.”
“You’re stalking me.” Adam said moodily.
“It’s my job as Class Rep to take note of all my class mates, idiot.” Grace snapped.
Adam leaned backed against the chair, sighing loudly.
“You have any goal in mind?” Grace asked.
That question gave Adam a heavy heart. “Yeah.” he answered anyway.
“What’s that?” Grace asked.
Adam looked at Grace and wondered why she asked. But he hesitated to answer.
“What, you shy?” Grace teased.
“NO!” Adam shouted. “I want to be a Military Celestial!”
There is silence in the room. Grace’s eyes were wide open in shock. “ARE YOU SERIOUS?” she screamed.
“What’s with that reaction?” Adam pointed.
“Man I can’t believe you actually want to be a Celestial. You look more to be just a plain old soldier with that lousy attitude of yours.”
“Don’t laugh at my dream.”
“I’m not laughing!’ Grace giggled. “But I’m really surprise. This goal is not something everyone could even believe they can have. But if you can’t even fight and protect yourself how can you be one?”
“I just don’t know where to start.” Adam said as he sat back on his chair.
“Take martial arts?” Grace suggested.
“I did sign up. I got kicked out of every training interview in this school” Adam said. “All the second years and the third years kept me from even stepping in just because I looked small and fragile to them.”
“So you gave up?” Grace asked.
“Yeah.” Adam said. “I want to learn self defense without hurting another human being. I’m not like you. You’re the class rep, and you’re popular and you definitely know martial arts.”
“You sound like you’re complimenting me and making yourself look like trash even more.” Grace said.
“Whatever. I’m just saying what’s true.”
Grace smiled. “Like you I cam from else where to. But I worked hard to be independent and stand on my own feet. I am thankful to have a father who taught me the basics of martial arts, but of course, I can’t commit to advance training.”
“Your dad taught you to fight?”
“Just the basics.” Grace said. “But to really kick :):):) is not something I can do. Though of course I’d prefer a man to step up and protect me.” Grace giggled as she cupped her cheeks with her hands.
“Sicko.” Adam mumbled.
“I heard that!” the class rep yelled.
Grace looked at Adam. “You not going home?”
“Not in the mood. My month’s salary was robbed again.”
“I see.” Grace softly spoke, looking down as her fingers moved around each other.
Grace was a unpredictable girl. She seems to have this sort of charm that gets anyone to open up to her. Making friends is easy for her. For me, it was as difficult as exercising. Come to think of it, I knew nothing about Grace. But I probably never will since I was never keen to know such things.
“Hello?” Grace howled in front of Adam’s face.
Adam screamed in shock and fell of his chair. “What was that for? He yelled back while rubbing his head.
“You’re dreaming, you donkey!” Grace insulted.
Adam for a first time noticed Grace’s eyes. They were actually dark purple, and all this time he thought they were black. He also noticed that she was wearing a small amulet with a circular shaped start, also purple. It’s sparkle made it look expensive.
“Let’s go. Class starts early tomorrow. I don’t want anyone from this class to be late, you hear?”
“Yeah yeah whatever. Stop nagging like a granny will ya?”
“Excuse me!?” Grace glared angrily while pulling Adam’s ear and Adam along out of the class.
Somewhere far off as the full moon rise, four men underground a long tunnel under construction for a new subway were doing their nightly maintenance check. They received news that during the dig, they hit a wall that can’t seem to be penetrated by any of their equipments. Four of the specialist were sent to do a check to approve stronger equipments for the use of the construction area. As they made their way through the long tunnel underground, they soon reach the end where they saw a huge black wall.
“What is this?” one of them asked.
“Not sure.” a taller man said as he took out a torchlight and shined it at the black surface, revealing sparkles reflected by the light.
“Looks like a universe if you think about it.” the shorter man with a yellow safety helmet over his head commented. “What in the world is this?”
Another shorter man walked up to the wall and felt the surface. I was completely smooth and has he moves his touch across the surface, he felt a sudden surge of energy emitting weakly from within.
Just then, the tunnel started to rumble and the four workers tumbled across the ground as they lost their step. The smooth black wall covering the tunnel shattered like glass and a fast red object jetted across the tunnel. It was so fast it tore past the four workers, leaving their skins and flesh shattered across the tunnel. They never knew what hit them. Following the red object, was four black speeding entities moving nearly as fast as the red entity. The tunnel rumbled and the entire tunnel is soon caved in. The four men were dead and the tunnel now completely sealed again.
I lived in an apartment not far off from school. I looked out the window and watched the sky. I thought about my school, my old job, and Grace talking to me. I wonder what I had to do to get further to where I need to be. Maybe it’s time for a change. But then, I felt an incredible amount of power surge through my body. I looked around the silent city and saw no one. Then without warning, it started to rain heavily. I looked up, and the clouds were grey and dark. Thunder and lightning shattered across the sky, sending the sound of shock waves across the city. There I saw it, a red full moon. It looked like the moon was covered in a sea of blood, but I new that it was something like an eclipse or something. But a red moon…out of no where. Is such a sudden event possible?
I felt that it was just a sudden passing event, yet at the same time, I could shake off the feeling that behind all this, something bad is going to happen.
Far off into the city at the tallest building , five figures stepped out. Each had different colored eyes shining like a laser beam and each with different shape and sizes. They stood in the rain, giving off a sinister smile. “We are finally free from the last gate.” the one in the middle with white glowing eyes said. “As the time draws near, the four of you…find me the four amulets, so we carry on our last plan…to cover this world in the lands of the underworld. Let us do all demons a favor…and cover this world in a sea of blood.”
The four demons behind nodded and they all disappeared like fire burning paper.
The night is young, but now, the events of a horrifying enemy steps into this world to bring death to all humans.
It was another day in class and Adam as usual, just ignored the lesson. It spoke mainly about History, his main subject, which he had little interest in. He watched the class from the corner of his position and wondered to himself if he should make friends. How can he do it, where to start?
Grace was at the first row, listening attentively to the subject at hand. Adam looked at his left and out the window. “A new job. A month vacation is just around the corner.”
Adam thought awhile. Right now, he has no money, so being picked on won’t mean much. But if he worked hard and has money, it’ll just be taken. He definitely can’t come to school the entire day without any cash for surviving. After lesson ended at 5pm Adam packed his bag as the school bell rang. He looked at all the students dressed in their black uniforms leaving the class. Adam did the same. Just as he reached the door, some of his classmates shoved him aside and left the class before he did. Adam looked at his class leave, and he never responded to their actions.
Grace who was cleaning the black board watched silently. “Always happens.” Grace thought.
Adam looked at the ground with little expression.
When no one was left in class, Grace placed the duster down and looked at Adam. “How long are you going to continue standing there?”
Without response, Adam just walked up to a table, pulled out the chair and sat down. “I don’t feel like going to home yet.”
“I can see that.” The class rep replied. “Thinking about finding a job right?” Grace added, trying to change the subject of what happened.
Grace went to the teacher’s table, opened the drawer and took out a stack of newspapers. “Here!” she said and tossed the stacked swiftly to Adam without causing it to fly all over the place.
“Those papers have the most recent listings for the newest jobs. Maybe we can check it out.”
“New job?” Adam said cheerfully.
As the sun sets slowly, Adam listed out a few jobs he needed for the holiday. Later that evening, Adam and Grace walked home together. This time they decided to take a different and longer route just to spend a little more time talking about what they wanted to do during their vacation.
It was truly a refreshing evening. Grace is probably the only person I could talk to. That night, I remember as clear as day about what we wanted to do on our vacation. As usual, I’m just going to work, but Grace had everything planned out. Shopping, going out to the beach. She even wanted to try sky diving, which I felt was a little extreme. She did invite me to come, but I declined. I may not like studying much, but I definitely feel more of working. It’s just me I guess. Grace was a cool person, and she is a friend I would hold dear. During our conversation, felt like I now know why I want to be a Celestial. It’s not just to be a man of justice. I want to be strong…so that I could protect those I hold dear. My family, my friend Grace, and probably more friends if I made any. She is a friend I would never forget. I privately promise myself that during vacation, I’ll find a job and also to taking up martial arts so that I can protect friends like Grace. Though I hate violence, I guys I’ll find a way around. But on the same night as the clouds turn grey and I made my silent promise, something bad happened.
Grace and Adam were walking through a clear path surrounded by large stone walls on each side. It was a straight path and Adam and Grace soon came across a gang of delinquents from another school.
Adam and Grace got silent and they quietly walked down the path as the few delinquents in blue uniform laughed out loudly. There were about nine of them, but they were engross in their conversation until one of them noticed Grace and Adam.
“Woah, love birds? Getting a room tonight?”
Adam and Grace ignored them and continued walking a little faster, but three of the gangsters ran forward and blocked their path. “Leave us alone.” Adam requested politely.
“What, we’re just having fun” the tallest gangster laughed.
A bald student walked up to Grace and touched her in her chest. In a split reaction Grace grabbed the bald student by his arm, over her shoulder and did a defensive slam on him. The other delinquents got up and surrounded the two students of Raven High. “What did you just do to our friend to B*tch!?” the shorter student yelled. The bald student stood up, rubbing his back in pain. “You sIut, you’re going to get it!”
“You guys are the one giving trouble here.” Grace yelled back.
The gangsters closed in on the two Raven High student. Grace was ready to pack a punch, but Adam blocked her as her back was touching the wall, Adam’s hand’s reach out to protect her.
“Oh, acting all hero eh?” one of the gangsters laughed.
“How stupid. Why don’t you just leave the girl and run off. We’ll take good care of her…physically.”
“Shut the hell up.” Adam growled. “I won’t let lay a hand on my friend.”
One of the gangster reached out and pulled Adam by his hair, and shoved him aside, leaving the rest of the attention to Grace. One of them took Grace by her hand and Grace was about to react when another moved in and grabbed her on the other arm. But she used her and slammed it right in the man’s sensitive area. One of them fell with the sound of agony and the others immediately moved in at the same time. Grace screamed, and Adam jumped up, and pushed the whole lot of them away with all his might. The other gangster kicked Adam in stomach and another punched Adam in the face. The student fell to the ground and while some gangsters tried to get Grace on the ground, Adam kept getting back up, pushing, and pulling the gangsters away from Grace. He wasn’t going to break his promise. He has to protect his friends. Just like what his idol Celestial did.
A foot smashed into Adam’s neck and a punch flew to his nose. Adam staggered, and fought forward. Two gangster got Grace by her ponytail, but Adam slipped pass the gangster in front of him despite they pulling his hair and tearing his shirt. Grace made a twist and spun right behind the gangster and smacked him right at the back of his neck. Adam dashed in, pushed Grace away from the crowd, as he continued to get battered by the gangster. Grace couldn’t understand. Why is Adam willing to push her out of this?
Two others got to Grace, but Adam crawled and grabbed the two gangster by their legs, tripping them. Grace was frozen as the gangster paid their attention to Adam who has now really ticked them off.
Adam was cowering into a ball as he receive kick after kick after kick. Blows in his legs, arms, and head. It was painful. Adam remember…he remembered the story of one of the greatest hero in the military when he was a child. It was an inspirational story of a Celestial, who is the second in command of the Celestial Team.
He was also a unique fighter and the very few of his kind left. He was a Ninja.
I remember it clearly. His name was Orichi. A ninja who had one of the highest respect in the military. His powers were frightening, and his skills were un-matched. I saw in the newspapers when I was a child. It was the first time reading the papers about a journalist with the passion to talk about men of inspiration. Orichi’s story caught my attention when that article was review on television. How this man had fought one of the most dangerous battles that no man would dare fight in. It was a fight he didn’t even have to participate in. But he fought anyway. He fought knowing the enemy was stronger then him. He fought with everything he had and died. But his sacrifice saved a fellow man whom he believed had the same capabilities as him…probably more. Orichi was a hero. His sacrifice for someone he barely knows made many talk about his action. Why did he save a man who is weaker then him against a powerful enemy?
Though in the end, I heard this man defeated the very demon that killed Orichi, the credit went to him. Orichi put his life to defend another person simply because he valued their lives. He saw the gift in the man he was protecting and for the sake of the world, die in order for them to have a better future. In the end, it happened and the world became a safer place. His sacrifice to fight a demon who’s powers were beyond that of anything in this world has inspired many. Orichi was strict, but kind. He values his friends and allies life over his own…and he became my childhood hero.
Rain started pouring down and the thunder roared across the sky. The gangsters got tired of beating Adam when the rain came down. The ground was slightly flooded and Grace was shaking Adam, trying to wake him up. Adam’s eyes was filled with emptiness. No…it wasn’t filled with nothing. It was filled with the sense of failure. Grace cried as she shake Adam by his shoulder, but his vision of Grace started to blur. His eyes slowly shifted down, and with a blur vision, he saw a dark figure standing far behind Grace, and then…Adam finally passed out.
Darkness blinded me for as long as I remember. I tried moving my arms, but I couldn’t feel them…I can’t feel my legs. My eyes felt heavy, I tried to open them…and a blindly light greeted my at the end of the darkness.
Adam weakly opened his eyes. He felt restless as he stared at the ceiling made of fine polished wood. He blinked for a while and tiredly looked at his right. He saw a green clay-made Tea set resting beside him. Warm sensation was rising from the tea cup, giving off a very nice aroma. Adam found himself in a bed…but when his vision cleared, it turned out to be a futon, a kind of Japanese floor bed. His entire body ached as he moved. He endured the pain as much as he could and looked at the tea cup. The aroma was nice and it did draw his attention. Adam looked around the room and found himself in a empty room made polished wood. He remembered his History lesson on Japanese homes. In another word, the room he’s in was a traditional Japanese-style room with a tatami mat floor.
The doors were Japanese screens, in other words they were called Shoji, a typically made of lightweight wood or bamboo and rice paper.
The aroma caught his attention again, and he held the warm tea cup and took a sip. A sudden rush of warm sensation went down his throat and into his stomach. It was so good that Adam drank the tea finish. He wondered who made such a nice tea. The sensation is incredible and he felt the aches in his body quickly becoming less and less painful. He wondered where he was now and tiredly got up, only to find himself in a male grey kimono when he got out of his futon. He walked out and pass the sliding door to a large opening.
He found himself in a beautiful home. It was huge and there was a stone bridge over a pond of fishes. Adam explored the huge place, obviously amazed with where he was.
Adam walked on and turned a corner where he saw a huge clearing. But at the end was a huge wooden gate. He guessed it was the entrance to this huge classic Japanese-like mansion.
Adam notice a figure on the ground. It was someone dressed in black shorts and sleeveless top with a magazine covering his face. Adam could see that the guy on the ground was asleep.
The high school student slowly approached the sleeping man when a hand reached out and held his left shoulder. Adam turned quickly, only to see a tall and calm looking man in short black hair, dressed in a black kimono. “You look okay now.” the man spoke in a calm soothing voice.
Adam was a little startled with the sudden appearance. He didn’t even know the man was behind him. It was like he just suddenly appeared out of no where.
“Who are you? Where am I?” Adam asked.
“Slow down on the question.” the man laughed. “You’ll only damage your brain further. Come, sit down and we’ll talk.”
The man in black kimono brought the same tea set Adam used earlier and he poured tea for the high school boy as they sat on the wooden floor by the pond.
“My name is Kazuo Honda, and I’m the owner of this small home here.” Kazuo introduced.
“Small home? It’s a mansion here “ Adam sarcastically said.
“Ha ha, really? Feels quite small to me.” Kazuo laughed.
“My name is Adam.” the high school teen introduced. “Were you the one who took care of me? Where’s my friend?”
“That wonderful girl? She left for school. I told her I’ll take care of your wounds and she’ll explain to the teacher of your absence.”
“I see, so she’s fine. That’s great.” Adam said in relieve.
“You must treasure her a lot, no?”
“Well, I don’t really know her, but she’s the only person who’s willing to be friends with me.” Adam answered.
“Then you are fortunate. I can also see that from your determination to protect someone who is stronger then you.”
“You were there last night? When it happened?” Adam asked.
“Yes. But I have no right to interrupt such a scenario.” Kazuo said. “I believe you know why.”
“Thanks.” Adam whispered. Just then, Adam felt something strange. He touched his face, his chest and looked at his hands. He just noticed that he had no bandages or broken bones. Only aches in his body. He looked at Kazuo, “Where’s my wounds?”
“They are healed.” Kazuo answered without thinking.
“WHAT? HOW?” Adam asked.
“Ha ha, it’s magic.” Kazuo laughed at Adam’s reaction.
“Oh, so the knight in shining armor has awaken eh?” a voice spoke.
Adam turned and saw a main standing on the stone bridge, in black shorts and sleeveless shirt. His spiky hair and eyes made him look like an ordinary person, but he was well built. Though Adam saw he doesn’t have a mountain of muscles but he seemed physically fit. But what is most amazing is that Adam felt an incredible presence when the man walked towards them.
“You’re awake now. Slept well?” Kazuo asked.
“Yup. Been a few days since I slept. That nap was good.”
The man with spiky hair looked at Adam. “Yo kiddo, name’s Shawn, Shawn Guyver. Good to see you looking well.”
“Ah…yeah, my name’s Adam. It’s nice to meet you too.”
“You took quite a beating last night.” Shawn said. “Next time, just hit em where it hurts. Their father’s day.”
Adam laughed a little. This two strangers were very friendly. Though Shawn looked like a delinquent himself and Kazuo seemed like a peace loving man. Both had very different personality and lifestyles just by looking at them. But if there is one thin common about them besides being friendly, is that they both had a powerful presence around them. Each time they appear, Adam’s heart would feel like it skipped a beat.
“Well, I don’t have a lot of visitors.” Kazuo explained. “So I guess talking to you would be refreshing for me.”
“What is this place actually. I think it’s too big to be a home.” Adam commented.
“Well, There is actually a few other people staying here, but its not often you get to see them.” Kazuo laughed. “But you may want to be careful. Unlike us, the others may be a little more scary to look at.”
Kazuo looked at the huge wooden door as big as a large stone wall. “Shawn, we have a visitor.”
“I’ll invite her in.” Shawn grinned.
“Her? Visitor?” Adam was curious. There wasn’t a knock at the door, how did Kazuo know? “Someone is outside.”
“Well, I don’t have visitors, so I’m assuming it’s your female friend.” the kimono man answered.
Shawn, with one hand pulled the huge door open as easy as pulling a normal door and beyond that door, was Grace in a black uniform. She bowed down as she greeted Shawn and ran to where Kazuo and Adam was.
“Adam, thank goodness. How are you feeling?” Grace asked.
“I’m feeling…much better actually.” Adam replied with a smile. “I’m sorry I got you worried.”
“I should be sorry.” Grace spoke softly, looking at the ground. “You didn’t have to protect me so much.”
“I have my own morals for doing it.”
Adam stood up. “Mr Honda, thank you for taking care of me.”
Grace looked at Kazuo and bowed down as well.
“It’s ok.” Kazuo said. “Drop by now and then. We can always talk.”
“I will, promise.” Adam said with a big smile and together with Grace, he left the place quiet once more with Shawn and Kazuo.
Shawn closed the door then sat beside Kazuo. “His recovery rate is extremely fast. Did you by any chance…do something?”
Kazuo smiled as he drank his tea. “Last night, his legs weren’t just broken.” Kazuo said. “He actually lost his ability to walk.”
Grace walked quietly down the empty road with Adam, looking at his face and hand.
Adam looked at Grace. “Is there something on my face?” Adam asked.
“Um, no. I just thought you look rather dashing in a kimono.” Grace giggled.
Adam blushed and turned away.
“I’m surprise that you look perfectly fine. It’s like you have no injuries.”
“Yeah, I noticed. Though my entire body is aching but I feel perfectly fine besides that.”
“That’s good. Maybe Mr. Honda is actually a doctor or a plastic surgeon.” Grace joked.
“Maybe a doctor, but plastic surgeon, I don’t think so.” Adam laughed.
Adam and Grace got to the train station where Adam saw Grace off. “I’ll be taking my leave now. You be careful, okay?” Grace said.
“Sure.” Adam replied softly and waved at Grace as she entered the train station with a wave to Adam.
Adam looked at himself and realized that he’s clothes indeed stood out from the public’s eyes. It’s not everyday anyone sees a man wearing a kimono, especially in this era.
Adam looked at his hands, and felt something really weird about his body, but decided not to think about it and decides to head back home.
Grace sat silently in the corner of the subway cart, thinking deep about last night…
“Adam!!!” Grace screamed.
Just then, a man in a black kimono stood before her in the rain and stared down at the body of Adam. Without saying a word he quickly carried the body and moved quickly to the huge wooden door a few meters away. The man known as Kazuo Honda got the body in, had Adam rested and quickly dried. Grace, who followed Kazuo watched under the warm flaming lamp that rested beside Kazuo and Adam as the kimono man ripped Adam’s clothes and examined his battered body. “Shawn, get her out of here.” Kazuo said.
Grace turned, and saw Shawn, holding her shoulder, and with a smile, assisted her out.
Outside the room, Grace sat quietly, holding herself tightly as Shawn place a towel over her. “Don’t worry too much.” Shawn said. “I don’t know how bad your friend is in, but as long as my pal is the one doctoring him, your friend should live.”
“Why…” Grace whispered. “Why did he have to defend me so much. Why did he…put his body and life for me…?”
Shawn looked at the hazy sky, covered by the falling rain and accompanied by the thundering storm. He turned to Grace and patted her on the head. “He has a strong belief. Whatever his belief is, it is his driving force for committing to such an action.”
“But he still didn’t have to do it.” Grace cried, rubbing her tears away.
“When someone has a strong belief, it creates pride. Men fight for their pride that is born from their beliefs. If you don’t follow through with their belief…they know themselves that they are just lying to themselves.”
Grace looked at Shawn. “You and your friend were there, weren’t you?”
“Well, you can’t say we don’t want to help him. We saw it all, and we were about to move in…when we saw how he protected you. That is when we realize that we shouldn’t save him.”
“It’s cold…” Grace commented.
“It is, but we know that feeling. He is doing something me and my friend have done before, and what I can say is that…if we did come in to save him, the next day when he wakes up, he will lose all confidence in himself and he’ll be humiliated…every time he sees you.”
Grace couldn’t grasp such perspective. But yet it seems true. Grace kept quiet, until the rain stopped, Kazuo stepped out of the room.
Grace stood up immediately and looked at Kazuo with eager eyes. “How’s Adam?” she asked immediately.
Kazuo shot a glance at Shawn before looking at Grace. “His bones are broken beyond hope, and almost all his muscles are torn.”
Upon hearing the news, Grace fell to her knees, covering her mouth with her hand, shocked as guilt ran over her.
Shawn looked up at Kazuo. “You can’t do anything to help?”
“By regular means, no. Even if we send him to the hospital earlier or now, the results will be the same.”
Grace started to cry. “It’s my fault.” she sobbed.
Kazuo walked pass Grace and Shawn and into the ran, heading toward a small building that seems to be a warehouse for storage. “Where is he…
“He’s going to save your friend.” Shawn said.
Grace rubbed her eyes, unable to think further after that night. What ever Mr. Honda did, was no normal medical method. What he did is unknown, but it definitely had its effect.
Adam tiredly entered a five storey building. This was the apartment he lived in. It is on the third floor, and it is quite old and run-down. Even so, it was cheap and Adam could do well supporting himself. He opened his old creaky door and enter a two room apartment. A small kitchen and a room with a single bed by the window. His room was old fashion, and its walls were pale white. He walked toward his bed, and landed softly on the brown covered mattress. He started to hug himself, feeling extremely cold. The ache in his entire body started to get worse. He felt hot and cold at the same time and started to wonder what’s happening to him. He felt his muscles were burning all over from the inside. Within the heated feeling, lies a cold feeling as though his bones were freezing up on him. His body started to become numb and Adam felt an incredible pain and discomfort all over his body. He wrapped himself in his blanket, in hope to fall a sleep and feel nothing that he is experiencing now.
The next day, life lead back to normal. Adam entered his class with his classmates buzzing around.
Adam, who is still in his second year in high school which it is the third year, but wishes is nothing more but fantasy. He sat quietly at his desk and noticed that the Class leader Grace has yet to arrive. Adam found it odd as she was always early.
Class went by another day, and as usual, it was boring for Adam. He had no drive to study. His classmates were always whispering and crating rumors about him. He started to wonder what he had done to deserve this. Was it because he looked a little timid and nerdy? After all, his school was known to have some strong sense of fashion. Maybe that was it.
The school bell rang and Adam left the class last, only to bump into Grace who was outside. Adam was stumped, but gave a small smile. “You haven’t been in class today?” Adam asked.
“Well, one of our teachers was asking me to guide the new student around the school.” Grace replied.
“I already know today’s lesson. I covered it last night.” Grace added.
Adam gave a small laughter. “Always the smart one, well prepared. So this new student, what’s he like? Did he like our school?”
“Well, not really. He’s more into the Swordsmanship Activity. He immediately participated in it when we came across it.” Grace answered with details.
“Hmm, what’s he like? A cool guy I bet.”
Grace giggled. “Yes he is a cool guy indeed. He never smiled at all. The whole day he just gives a serious expression until the sight of pretty girls come by, he…turned into a complete playboy flirting with every girl he met.”
Silence stood between the two students, then Adam made his response. “You’re joking?”
“Nope. He did try to flirt with me but I turned him down. Ha ha, ‘s a really nice guy. He’ll be in our class starting tomorrow. Since you don’t have much friends, may I suggest you make friends with him?”
“Well he sure sounds interesting. I think I will for a change, I’ll try it out.”
Grace smiled and nodded happily.
Later after school, Adam and Grace waited outside the school gate. Waiting patiently for the new transfer student.
Grace once again bared heavy thoughts in her mind. Looking at Adam’s quickly recovered body, she wondered what that strange yet calm man did.
Just then, someone shouted hi. Adam and Grace looked up and saw a student, dressed in the same uniform as Adam. His hair was snowy grey and shoulder length. He had a extremely over-happy expression all over his face as he waved at Grace.
“Hello, Makiyo.” Grace greeted with a bow.
The man Grace addressed as Makiyo stood before them and bowed. “Good day, Grace, and…
“Adam.” Grace introduced. “Adam, this is Makiyo, the new student I mentioned to you.”
“Hi.” Adam greeted with a wave.
Adam noticed Makiyo holding a long and thin object wrapped in a brown wrapping sheet. He figured it must be his sword. But isn’t carrying a real sword a little over-bearing? Adam wondered.
The three students decided to chit chat in a regular burger joint. In there they talked more about Makiyo and his transfer her.
“Oh, so you came from land of the sword to study here?” Adam confirmed.
“That’s only half of the reason.” Makiyo said. “I came here, to the land of dreams, this city, to fulfill my ambition!”
“Oh?” Grace ad Adam said together.
“To…to……to see PRETTY GIRLS!!” Makiyo squealed.
Adam was dead silent. Grace just laughed.
“I expected something like wanting to be a great swordsman or something.” Adam said.
“Yeah well that too. But women are more important. They are like the flower of our lives.” Makiyo recited. “To treat them gracefully, to hold them dearly, to feel their warmth.”
“Hmm, you got a good point there.” Adam said. “Treating a girl like a real girlfriend.”
Makiyo was stunned and looked up. “Girlfriend? I am talking about making out in bed.”
“YOU IDIOT!” Adam and Grace screamed as they threw their empty plastic cups at Makiyo, who simply just laughed at their reaction.
Night came and Adam reach into his apartment. He opened his door and saw a letter on the floor. He opened the letter and read the contents inside. As expected, it was the bill for this month’s rent. Adam felt his stomach weigh down. He had little money to survive on. He needed a job as soon as possible. But where?
The next day arrived and it was a week end. I tried looking for a job, but it wasn’t very easy. It is coming to the point I am willing to take practically any job…but it still wasn’t easy to find one. Summer vacation is coming and now is the best time for me to start finding a job.
Adam soon found himself in a park. He took a seat on one of the benches as he watched the children fly kites and play with their dogs. Adam envied them for their freedom and wished he was as free as them.
“Adam?” a voice called.
Adam turned and saw Grace and Makiyo.
“Guys?” Adam said in shock.
Grace was dressed in in a plain white dress while Makiyo was dressed in a dark blue kimono like the one Mr. Honda was wearing. In his hand was a long wrapped object.
Later as the same burger joint.
“So you’re out looking for a job.” Grace said.
“Yeah. I’m behind my month’s rent and I got to find a job or I’ll be sleeping in the rain.” Adam imagined.
“Ho ho, Well you can always try and spark a woman’s horny side.” Makiyo giggled.
“I don’t get you.” Adam said.
“What I mean is to find a woman, get her to your good side with whatever charm you may have, and have a one night stand. This way, every night, you’ll have a hotel roof over your head, and also some…physical pleasures.”
Silence killed the air as Grace and Adam looked disgustingly at Makiyo and his sneaky smirk
“Grace seriously, why in the world are you out with this fellow. Aren’t you afraid he’d try something funny on you?”
“Hey hey.” Makiyo interrupted. “I may be a women’s magnet, but I still hold honor in not doing unnecessary things that will destroy my reputation you know.”
“Riiiiiiiight.” Adam and Grace said in unison and sarcasm.
“By the way, we should head back early tonight.” Grace suddenly said.
“Hmm? What’s up?” Adam asked curiously.
“The past few days there have been reports on murders happening during the night.” Grace replied. “The police is currently investigating the murder cases.”
“Oh, interesting, your city is.” Makiyo smirked.
“The murders aren’t normal. Each death was different in the most unique way.” Grace said. “Also, I noticed that majority of the murdered people are somehow not connected, but connected in a totally different way.”
“I heard a little about the news before I came.” Makiyo said. “The deaths involve electrocution of more then seventy thousand volts, or a joker card on the remains of the bodies found. Even the head ripped out from the body.”
The words send chills down Adam’s spine. “What kind of murder is this.”
“The police suspect that this deaths is made by demons.” Grace said. “I mean, where can we just randomly get seventy thousand volts out of nowhere?
“The connection to them is that most of this people are somehow knowledgeable of the ancient artifacts of demonology or possess such artifacts themselves.”
“Which can only mean that the murderer may be trying to find something among this people.”
Grace held her necklace tightly. “It’s scary that something like this is happening.”
Adam and Makiyo couldn’t agree more.
Later that night, Adam, Grace and Makiyo head to the station to see each other off. As they were about to part ways, Makiyo sense something.
“Everyone, remain silent.” Makiyo said suddenly.
Grace and Adam paused, looking at Makiyo’s serious face for the first time. His eyes suddenly changed. What used to be cheerful carefree eyes, Adam himself could see his eyes sharpen with a great amount of killer instinct emitting out of Makiyo.
The night was young, but the street was quiet and not a single soul in sight. Yet Makiyo knew, he knew there is someone. He could feel it. A great aura of evil lurks around every corner. His instinct has came in handy. He made a sharp turn to his right, staring down the road in the darkness, when a figure suddenly bounces out like a ball towards them, snatches Grace without warning and bounced off quickly into the darkness in the road. “Grace!” Adam screamed.
Grace didn’t scream. It all happened too fast.
“Follow me. I can sense it. We’ll track it down!” Makiyo said. Both of them ran down where they saw the fast bouncing object moved. Adam followed close behind Makiyo, amazed with his sense. Then Adam wondered what that thing was and why did it snatch Grace?
Soon enough, we found ourselves in an abandoned warehouse. There we saw Grace, on the floor, her arms and legs bleeding. It was probably to keep her from running away. Behind her stood a fat figure in the darkness with red glowing eyes. It’s smile was huge and we could see that huge yellowish teeth.
“Who are you?” Makiyo demanded.
“Ho ho he he he ha ha ha.” the figure laughed. “You can trace me? Impresivico!”
“Some English.” Adam thought.
Thin shiny objects darted out of the shadows. Adam saw them and quickly dodged them. But he was slow. One of them struck hi left hand, while Makiyo dodged all of them.
Adam fell, looking at his wound where a thin shining joker card was stabbed into his wound.
Makiyo removed his the wrapping sheet and revealed a black sheathed sword. He draw out the blade, shining under the moonlight that shines through the dusty broken windows of the empty warehouse.
The figure started laughing hysterically. “A useless fool and a skilled human.” he laughed. “Nice.”
Grace looked up at the figure, afraid. She knew what this demon wanted with her.
“What do you want with her!” Makiyo demanded to know.
“You two are naïve little bugs indeed. You have no idea the power this girl has.”
“What?” Adam whispered. He removed the card from his wound, and could have sworn the card stabbed his bone, but it felt fine, besides the pain the muscle in his body has to endure.
The demon grabbed Grace by the neck, looking at the necklace. “This is one of many.”
Without warning, Makiyo dashed forward at a quick speed as he swings his sword. The enemy jumped away and into the light, revealing a pale face red lips and big red round nose and pure black eyes with a tiny red ruby blowing light in them. A demon clown revealed itself. It was fat and wore tattered but color strip costume of green and white and red pointed shoes. His clothes he wore however were also covered in blood stains.
“I am Jokester, your friendly neighborhood clown.” the demon self introduced. “Today’s act, the decimated body of the three stooges.”
Makiyo bent his knees, sword behind and with his right leg pushing forward and dashed front towards the demon. The clown threw more shiny cards, but Makiyo successfully slashed them apart as he continue to charge forward. His skill and accuracy impressed Adam. But will it be enough to fight this demon?
Jokester simply smiled and jumped high into the air.
But Makiyo expected it and he stopped suddenly, and swing his sword upward at an amazing angle and speed, shooting compressed air pressure right toward the enemy. The projectile struck the demon and he lost balance in the air and tumbled down the floor like a ball.
The demon bounced up, giggling menacingly. “You got skill for a human. But you think your act will be good enough to stop me from our goal?”
Makiyo kept silent, remaining focused.
Adam was amazed. But in the end, Makiyo was doing all the work and he couldn’t do a thing. Makiyo was saving Grace, but…
Just then, a floating figure moved pass Adam. The injured student shouted out to warn his samurai friend. “Makiyo, behind you!”
Makiyo turned, and a ghostly figure charged down. Makiyo tried to defend, but the enemy’s attack passed through his sword and slashed Makiyo right across the chest and downward to his leg. Makiyo dodged back in time to keep the wound from being deep. But it was too late. Makiyo already sustain an injury that he can’t fight two enemies in one go now.
Adam too a steel pole nearby and rush toward the demon. The ghostly figure swoop down and struck the pole out of Adam’s hand and three silver object struck Adam in his chest. Causing massive bleeding as he fell down motionless.
“Adam! Makiyo!” Grace screamed.
It was no good. Makiyo was on his knees, trying hard to breath. The ghostly figure stopped moving, revealing a female pale ghost with crystal blue hair and red eyes revealed behind a odd decorated mask and dressed in a sky blue gown. She started to multiply to three of her own images and each shot a needle at Makiyo, sending him flying to the ground as the needles nearly pierced his vital organs.
“Physical attacks is no use to me, do not bother to try attack me with that sword of yours.” the soft speaking female demon said.
“Who in the world are you?”
“Always with the questions.” the clown laughed. “Don’t you feel board asking them?”
The female ghost passed through the mirrors, revealing her style and technique beside using needle. “I am Quadrant. Of course, you don’t have to worry about remembering. We are here for the girl, anyone who pose no threat but are in the way will just die like insects.”
This is bad. Makiyo knows that his sword doesn’t work. Even if he took the clown down, how will he take a ghost down?
He weakly stood up, enduring the pain. He can’t fall. “I didn’t come all this way to fall. I have lost comrades once, I won’t lose them again.” Makiyo spoke with determination. “I will not fall so easily.”
“Ooooooo” Jokester howled. “Let us see this determination then, boy.” The clown laughed as he took out a small ball. He threw it at Makiyo, and in instinct, reacted to the ball and he slashed it, which caused an explosion, sending Makiyo off his feet.
Just then, a large steel barrel smashed into the clown and sent him flying down the hall. Quadrant turned and saw Adam, bleeding but still standing. “Adam…Makiyo.” Grace cried.
“I don’t know why you want my friend, but I don’t give two cents of your reasons. I will protect her and my friends. No matter what.”
Quadrant noticed the eye color in Adam was slowly changing between fiery orange and bloody red. “Something resides inside him.” Quadrant thought. “I doesn’t seem to be a good idea if he releases it.”
Makiyo, who was nearly out cold was assisted by the injured Grace, who lifted him to her knees. “Makiyo!” Graced called. “Makiyo!”
But it was no good. The small explosion only made his wound worse.
Adam, stood before Makiyo and Grace. Like his idol Orichi who stood before his very kind, protecting them from death even against the most powerful enemy in existence. Adam now knows what he must do. He was afraid of death, but his belief, his pride and ego over his belief made him stay on.
Quadrant waved her hand and all the glasses in the warehouse shattered and started to come in control of her power. The tiny glasses gathered like a swarm of bees and it took aim at all the three humans. Jokester, who is using the barrel as a table smile and watched his ally perform a great show in his lingo.
“Try defending your friends from this, human.” Quadrant said and pointed her finger at the three humans. Adam knew what was coming and he dashed behind and with his whole body, shielded Makiyo and Grace.
Grace screamed as the thousand glasses shot down and stabbed Adam at the back. Blood splattered and the pouring rain of glasses stabbed, slash and pierce Adam’s back. The pain was beyond anything Adam has ever experienced and he knows that death is now at his doorstep.
Quadrant stopped her attack, and Adam fell to the floor, motionless.
“ADAM!” Grace could only scream.
Makiyo couldn’t believe his eyes with what Adam had done. Did he just lost another friend?
The bloody back of Adam was horrifying to look at, but a scenery for the demons.
Will the three humans be able to survive anymore damage?
As Adam lay dead, and Makiyo injured and losing blood, Grace is the only human left who can protect the two fallen friends.