Rabbit and Carrot

Chapter 27

His name was Maeda Jun. But his odd fixation with the Western culture influenced him into introducing himself as 'Johnny' instead. Jun was the first person who went missing. Despite our efforts for the past 3 weeks, we weren't able to find clues on who the kidnappers were and where the three missing members were taken to.

I was told that he joined Kings at the age of 16, five years ago. With his wide eyes and naive attitude, he often seemed like a curious child. When I first came to Bunkyou, every member of Kings was thrilled to finally meet the so-called princess of the gang, Kime, but he showed more enthusiasm than everyone else. The smile he gave me the first time I met him earlier this year was filled with excitement and his eyes always looked at me with admiration…

But he would never open his eyes and look at me like that again.

I clenched my fists and gritted my teeth when I saw his cold, motionless body lying on the examination table on the other side of the glass. The forensic scientist passed me a folder and I scanned through the documents.

… No DNA of the attacker was found… I skimmed through the rushed handwriting and barely processed what was on the paper… Signs of torture… I flipped to the next page of the report and saw a photo of the area on his arm where the 'K' that signified his acceptance into the gang was tattooed at. In the picture, a single 'S' had been carved into the flesh – an obvious taunt directed at us.

I forced myself to remain calm and began going through a mental list of all the gangs around the area with an 'S' in their name but all the organisations I thought of had either formed a truce with us or were too weak to carry out the kidnapping.

Could it be an inside job?

"Kime," Ulquiorra interrupted my thoughts. "We should head back. It's nearing 3AM."

I nodded my head reluctantly, "Get a copy of these reports. I want to reread them when we get back."

That night - or should I say morning - I laid in my bed wide awake as millions of thoughts raced through my mind. Ichigo was thankfully already asleep so I was able to postpone the promised explanation. Eventually, I gave up and sat at my desk and spent the next few hours rereading and summarising the report for my brother.


I sat up in my chair in surprise and then groaned. I looked up at Ichigo while rubbing my stiff neck. He looked back worriedly and began to massage my shoulders for me. "When did you get back?"

"3? 4? I forgot," I shrugged then winced. I didn't even remember when I'd fallen asleep. I checked my laptop and was glad I had already sent the email to my brother.

"You should get some more sleep. You don't have classes today right?"

"I'll be fine."

Ichigo didn't seem convinced and nagged me to get some sleep until he had to leave for his morning lecture. I sighed in relief when I was finally left alone but my peace was interrupted by my mobile.


I rolled my eyes, "Just concentrate on your lecture, stupid Carrot."

"I can't concentrate when I know you're pushing yourself again. You looked really pale this morning."

"I said I'll be fine," I reassured him. "Stop worrying and go to class."


Ignoring the pang of guilt, I quickly hung up and turned it off. I lay down on my bed and stared at the white ceiling while rubbing my face tiredly. The night Jun went missing, Ichigo and I were around the east side of the area… I recalled the shops we walked past, trying to find anything out of place but everything was normal. We weren't near any places that belonged to other gangs so we weren't trespassing on anyone's territory. Even if we did stumble on someone else's territory and angered them, they wouldn't have known I was Kime, let alone who my guards were and attack them.

I needed to get this figured out before Ichigo asks me about it again. He will without doubt try to intervene and that is the last thing I want him to do. I already dragged him too far into this world, I won't let him get dragged into this more than necessary. It's too dangerous. If he ended up getting hurt because of me…I stopped my thoughts right there before I started debating with myself again. Now wasn't the time to do that. Ever since we started dating, I would keep finding myself thinking if it was a good idea. Common sense told me to break up with him right away but my heart would always find a reason not to…

I sighed in frustration and rolled over. Reaching into the drawer of my bedside table, I took out another phone that I usually used to contact other people from Kings. After a few rings, Ulquiorra picked up.

"I'm going to have a look around the place Ichigo and I was when Jun went missing," I told him and hung out without hearing his reply. I didn't need his permission to leave the building but I had promised my brother I would always tell Ulquiorra where I went as a precaution. Depending on the situation Ulquiorra would tell guards to follow me.

Once there, I started memorising what shops and clubs were in the area. Clubs… A feeling of loneliness attacked me when I suddenly thought of Urahara's club and how everyone was always there when I arrived, greeting me with warm smiles. I pushed the thought away and shook my head to clear my mind.

Again, I wasn't able to spot any suspicious shops or people. It was a normal shopping district. So why was Jun attacked here?

Unless… A chill ran down my spine. Unless the attacker had been trailing us, blending into the crowds and waiting for a chance to strike…

A hand tapped my shoulder.

I stiffened before slowly turning to look at the person behind me.

A pale-skinned girl with long, light lilac-coloured hair and matching light-blue eyes looked back at me, "What's wrong with you, Rukia-chan? You look like you just saw a ghost."

"Oh, it's only Yuki-sempai," I slowly exhaled to calm my nerves and moved my hand away from the knife hidden beneath the hem of my dress. I formed a slightly strained smile on my face, "Nothing, I think the horror movie I watched last night is bothering me more than I expected."

Yuki gave me a surprised look, "I didn't think you were the type to watch those kinds of movies."

I shrugged with a wry smile, "A friend recommended it to me… "

"I see," I felt myself fidget under her scrutinizing gaze. "Well I was planning on going alone, but since you're here, why don't you come visit the new café with me? I think Yamaguchi-san and the others already went a few days ago."

"Ah, yeah, I remember," I nodded. "I had to do something for my brother so wasn't able to go."

"Well then, all the more reason to come with me," she smiled and we headed off.

As I was pulled along, I struggled out of her grasp and complained but she ignored me completely. I gave an inaudible sigh. Guess a small break wouldn't hurt. I wasn't making any progress anyway.

"I wonder if their strawberry sundaes are good," I thought out aloud.

My little break lasted longer than I had expected. Three hours, to be exact. I checked my watched and bit my lip in regret. I wasted way too much time. I parted ways with Yuki before climbing onto my bike and heading to the place where Jun's body was found. I spent the next hour or so asking the owners of the surrounding shops for information but learnt nothing new. Either they really didn't see anything or the local yakuza groups threatened them to act ignorant. I sigh heavily, stupid yakuza and their influence. If the civilians weren't allowed to talk about it, then I guess I'd have to gather information from the yakuza members themselves.

Hopping onto my bike, I headed to a club that the local gangs often gathered at. One of the first things I did when I arrived in Bunkyou was memorise the places different groups gathered. You never know when weaker and easily manipulable organisations like them would come in handy. Sometimes it was easy to get information from them but other times they needed a bit more persuasion…

I entered the club. A bar lined the right side and a few people were lounging on couches near the back of the room. No one noticed my arrival because they were so involved in their own conversations but the sound of the door swinging shut behind me caused all of their attention to focus on me.

"I would like to ask a few questions," I said while slowly walking forward. They visibly tensed but didn't move from their seats. "What do you know about the kidnappings that have been happening recently?"

"Who do you think you are walking in and talking as if you own this place?"

I looked at the balding man who seemed to be the leader of the 30 or so hostile looking men and women surrounding me.

"I don't want to cause any trouble," I replied calmly. "I'm just here for some information."

"Leave," Baldy ordered. "We don't know anything."

"Oh, is that so?" I cocked my head and widened my eyes in surprise before swiftly taking out my knives and smiling dangerously at them. Before anyone of them moved, I flung my knife at a man sitting by the bar with a flick of my wrist. The blade sunk into his calf and he clutched at it while roaring from the pain.

"How about now?" I asked them again.

"You brat, we'll make you regret coming here!"

I rolled my eyes upon hearing Baldy's clichéd threat before quickly ducking an oncoming punch. I used the back of my knife to hit the nape of his neck. He was unconscious before he hit the ground. I clicked my tongue and adjusted my strength. I needed them conscious so I could question them…

Two came up from behind and I kicked the first in the stomach. They stumbled backwards and ran into the second person and the both of them fell to the ground.

"Too easy," I said under my breath. "I could beat you all even with my eyes closed."

"Don't get so cocky, bitch," someone grabbed my neck and growled. I felt the icy barrel of the gun press against my temple.

"Me, cocky?" I looked up to see my attacker who was standing behind me. "I have more experience in fighting than all of you added together." I kicked him on the knee and smiling contently when I heard a crack. The man doubled over and I took his gun. I twirled the gun while surveying my opponents who were looking at the gun in my hand warily. I emptied the magazine before throwing the gun away not caring where it went. I never liked using guns as they took out the fun in fighting.

I lifted my hand and crooked my finger. "What happened to making me regret coming here?" I provoked.

With an enraged roar, they came onto me and I accepted their attacks eagerly.

Settling into university was more taxing than I expected so, until recently, I haven't been involved in any fights. I hadn't realised how much I missed it.

A small smile formed on my face and I quickly erased it while chiding myself for having such bloodlust.

The balding man pounced on me while I was deep in thought and he pinned me to the group by grabbing both of my wrists in his hands.

"Cocky bitch, this is a lesson to not mess with adults like us," He sneered in my face.

I turned away in disgust at the saliva flying from mouth like rain. Summoning all my strength, I kicked him hard and he rolled away gasping in pain. The kick was a bit under the belt (no pun intended) but it was the first counter-attack that came to my head. I left him lying there and retrieved my fallen knives. Without wasting another second, I charged toward my remaining opponents.

After I made sure I got all the information out of them I left the building inconspicuously. I looked at the closed door, wondering briefly if things had gone smoother if I had just told them I was Kime but I just shrugged and kept walking. The 30 unconscious adults sprawled on the ground inside the building and the words 'Don't fuck with Kings' carved into the wood of the bar was a clear enough message to everyone in the area: the rumours that Kime was in Bunkyou were true and she was finally making her debut.
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