Foggy Roads-Part 2
There was no need for restraints.
I held my head low.
They knew; they knew they had won.
I sat in that god-forsaken dungeon for what seemed to be hours. I thought that last room was cold; I was terribly mistaken. I miserably looked at my fingers; underneath all the dried crimson was an off shade of blue hue. The circulation to my toes had long since gone. My tears, my emotions, were frozen to my cheeks like icicles. I couldn't even swallow. My throat was raw from all the screams I had tried to muster, I tried countless times to wake him up.
But to no anvil did it work.
I still remember seeing the back of his head.
Still unmoved and still non caring as I was dragged away, over and over.
The puddles of scarlet grew.
And each time, he seemed to get more distant from reality.
"Why?" I choked, "Why did you scream?" A new tear came from the rim of my eye. Kaneki never did answer my question. Yet, then again…
The hinges to door's heavy weight squeaked as it opened. I inhaled a shaky breath. I heard the familiar draft-like footsteps. The chills of fear ran through my body. Though, I felt defeated. I couldn't rid myself of the continuous shakes.
"Ah, [F/N], it's nice to see your finally conscience again." That demonic voice filled the area with it's sick slightly humored remark. I dared not to look at him. I heard another shuffle of shoes following.
The heavy set man cleared his throat, "Have you enjoy my friend, Kaneki's musical solo? The boy's got quite the lungs, don't you agree?"
I really didn't need an answer to the question…
I rolled my lips inward to avoid making any noise. I kept my shoulders firmly plastered against the stone walls. And even though the pain was excruciating, I held my legs to my weary chest. However pointless it may have seemed, it brought me some comfort.
I watched as those black stained shoes came into my view. My spine was nearly peeled away from my overbearing tense muscles. Mentally, I wasn't going to live through this. I tightened my jaw and I prayed that I could control my natural habits. After all…I was only human.
An endearing sigh escaped the man's lips, "Awe, not talking again are we? And here I thought we were well acquainted [F/N]. After all, not everyone receives a personal tooth extraction. That's rather unique-" I cringed as the sound of the metal clamp's chomp. My mouth still pooled with wads of blood.
"Would you not agree, Ayato?" Jason asked. I heard a shuffle of feet.
"Tch, haven't been one to ever disagree with you, Sir," Ayato replied mater of factly. I slightly pinched my brows. Since, when did that boy take direction from anyone? The sadistic male let out a thunderous laugh as he strolled across the room. I peered up at Ayato, thankfully his eyes weren't upon me. My ears picked up the sound of rattling jars and unscrewing lids. My heart pulsed rapidly.
"Let's see," The hulky Ghoul said excitedly. "Now this little guy is a show stopper. It really helped Kaneki and I form a great bond in the past." My eyes widen in horror. There was no hindering the panic that swelled within me. The monstrous man came back with his fingers pinching a twirling beetle like centipede. It's millions of tiny spiked legs frantically clawed in all directions. My mouth gapped open at the sight.
Jason smiled, "See? I told you this baby would be the icebreaker. The only question remains," he paused as he looked down at me, "which location will make you sing louder?"
I violently shook my head as I stuck myself further back into the wall. I wish I could just disintegrate into one of those tiny rocks. I would give up anything to vanish. I take it back; being eaten wouldn't be that horrible. Goosebumps quickly covered my body. Even my teeth, though incredibly sore, managed to chatter.
The devil's eyes roamed my figure, "That might be an interesting spot." A smile stretched across his face before he harshly kicked my injured leg. I stifled a cry. The wound continued to seep a plentiful amount of liquid. How had I not died this way?
"Ayato, hold her steady. Don't want this guy crawling the wrong direction." Jason advanced closer as did his mindless assistant. I held up my arms in a defenseless action and weakly tried to block him. Ayato easily shoved my limbs away as he hovered his body over me. Both palms were plastered on each side of my forearms. I felt a massive hand grab my raw ankle.
I was about to scream when a directly harsh 'shhh' pierced my ear. With blurry eyes I looked at the messy haired Ghoul as his attention faced Jason. The young Ghoul before me interjected.
"It's fucking useless to use that tactic on her." Ayato said dully. I didn't move, as I was in shock to his words. I starred at the two men in disbelief. Even the leader, Jason, raised a brow.
"What the hell are you talking about?" He snorted. The bug still was dangerously dangled above my wound. Ayato's fingers dug into me.
He let out an annoyed sigh; "I've dealt with this piece of shit human before. She doesn't cave under pain." I was wrong. I wasn't going to die from outside sources. I was going to perish because of a heart attack. What was he saying? I knew I was giving him the same astonished look as Jason. Except, I didn't blink.
The man in the suit rolled his eyes, "I doubt your words to be truthful Ayato. Every being, every human, cracks under pressure." His other hand popped a few knuckles. I squirmed as it reminded me of Kaneki. Suddenly, Ayato released me. He stood above me and before I knew it a powerful kick was blown to my shoulder. I couldn't even yelp as his foot crushed down on my stomach. I breathed heavily as the blood dripped from the corners of my mouth.
Ayato narrowed his eyes at me as if to challenge me.
"See? Fucking pointless," He said more towards me. Jason let out of gruff of disappointment. Ayato pressed again on my gut, "The only way to make her sequel is by other ways." My nerves fired off at the dark sounds of tone. Jason titled his head as he looked at me.
"You seem to know your physiology well, Ayato," Jason said rather amusedly. "Very well, I'll leave the rest to you." The man pulled a white hole filled mask over his face. He strolled to the exit before making a final glance.
"Besides, Kaneki's probably missing our fun," He held up the bug's twisting body. My stomach dropped further to the floor. "Oh the joys of hearing a duet." He laughed hysterically as he slammed the door behind him.
"You're still an asshole."
"You're still a whinny, bitch."
I starred at Ayato with duel hated eyes. I couldn't believe my luck, it hadn't gotten better, in fact it had gotten worse. Much worse. I let my lip curl into a snarl when he tried to open my mouth. He grabbed my chin roughly.
"Open that fucking jaw, I'm not going sit around while you think things over. If you want I'll make you sing for real," Ayato growled. I rolled my eyes to the ceiling as I allowed him to put a small pad of gauze in the back on my cheek. I winced when the fabric made contact with the wound. I never would have guessed the strange sensation I would feel having that missing molar. It had been years since I had lost teeth.
Ayato popped my mouth shut, "God you're so damn difficult." I adjusted my tongue around the soaked clot.
"I'm not in the mood for your attitude. You can just-can just-" I paused at the curse words that wanted to roll out of me. I let out heavy sigh, "you can just leave now." I drifted my gaze from him. I starred at the cracks in the floor.
Ayato let out an obvious huff, "You pathetic humans. Don't you ever get those fucked up emotions right? Can't even show gratitude after I just spared you a terrible time and not to mention stuck my fingers in your mouth to plug a wound. Tch, no wonder you things are nothing but food."
I shook my head. My body began to fill with anger.
"That's the problem with you creatures," I retorted. I then turned to face him, "you're always ravenous. And not just for a meal either, all of you have some sort of ego problem. All of you blood suckers want power. What's wrong with all of you? What are you all so afraid of?" I looked at him with questionable eyes of disgust. Ayato's face-hardened intensely. I could practically see the veins bulge around his orbs.
"You can shut that rambling piece of shit mouth of yours before I snap it off your head." The Ghoul threatened. I raised my shoulders.
"Exactly my point. Congrats on proving my theory correct. All of you heartless monsters feel this need to control, us. As if-as if, we are some sort of live stock that needs to put in the proper correl. What are you so afraid of? Huh? Tell me, Ayato, are you afraid of us?"
He grinded his teeth in front of me, "Shut up you fucking-" I couldn't hold back the trembling lip. Light tears made there way back to my vision. I was still mad, beyond furious. However, I was hurt, crushed by the way things were. My heart ached for many things. And one of them was to have life back to normal, a world without Ghouls.
I looked at my hands, "I know, I can shut up now. Since I'm a fucking pathetic waste of space." I finished the sentence for him.
Ayato was silent as I cried.
"It's hard, its painful Ayato," I said with in between sobs. He still was knelt next to me. I licked my chapped lips, "It hurts knowing that's how we are valued. You can't imagine-" My words trailed off.
Ayato was about to lay a hand on my neck when the door unexpectedly was jarred open. I flinched at the bang that followed. The figure from the doorway emerged and was clear who our visitor was.
"I didn't hear any singing," Jason said as he toyed with his tool. My heart froze as I realized that I had drowned out all of Kaneki's screams with my own meltdown. How could I be so selfish? Then again, its not like he cared that I was taken. My chest clenched at the thought. I could feel my emotions becoming harder again.
Love [F/N], you've never been one to care that much about anyone. Especially a boy…
I pursed my lips at the reminder.
I was right; I was stone cold.
Ayato quickly stood and fiddled with the zipper of his pants, "Sometimes they're just left in shock." I shot him a glare of annoyance. I knew what image he managed to portray. Disgusting pig, I thought to myself.
Jason howled, "Ah that a boy. Well it seems as though this will be our final time together. I do hope you've enjoyed your stay, [F/N]. I lifted my chin.
"I'll be sure to recommend it to others," I said sarcastically. Ayato gave me his angered expression. I didn't care. It would be his fault, if he got caught in the act of not performing his duties. After all, I was just the weak pathetic human. I was as brainless as cattle.
But that also makes me unpredictable, right?
Jason managed another laugh, "What a pistol. Let's see how loaded she'll be after this little meeting. After all," he strolled closer, "it's the grand finale."
He hoisted me to my feet.
My veins felt exactly like constricted tubes as the blood tried to rush through them.
I wasn't entirely sure what I was about to see, this time around.
Last meeting, god, seemed so long ago. I wouldn't be surprised if it had been a full night's passing. Maybe that's what the chills were from? Was the moon against me? Or was it trying to harden me, to prepare me for something worse to come?
I would never know.
Jason held me loosely by the arm as he fiddled with the doorknob. He took his leisurely time, which only caused me to hyperventilate more. I just wanted this to end. If this room was going to be my tomb, then why does the clock have to slow?
You're a greedy man, I said to the Grim Reaper. I could have sworn I heard a cackle of laughs from my head. That foggy shadow was swirling inside of there. I let my shoulders drain out a deep breathe.
Ayato had veered off on his own path quite a ways ago. I would never forgive him for the torment he caused both my sister and I. However, at the same time I actually found myself thankful for his quick thinking. He may be a worthless, spine-less, and despicable Ghoul.
My tongue messed with the damp cloth.
But…he also spared me from something possibly far greater.
"Inglorious bastard," I whispered to myself. Can you believe that I actually smirked at that? I heard the twist of the knob, the heavy breathing from Jason, and the gears in my turn. I just kept remembering. The thoughts would stop.
The reel of films flickered through my brain. I didn't try and cease the slide of frames. I welcomed it. I told myself, this was probably the last time I would "remember" anything. Once, you die. That's it. Anything that once was, would be ashes like the rest of the body.
So why not let the existence of me live one last time?
The door began to squeak, and my mind began to play.
Mom, she came first. I recalled the day she bought me my first set of crayons. I had to be, five maybe six? Who cares, the point was it started to evolve the person I would become. It shaped me. That little box of colorful sticks, it meant something. The moments of she and I drawing together were still there. I have never forgotten the messy scribble I created of a rainy day. Mom was confused, she had asked me why the little girl had thrown away her umbrella and knocked over her bucket. I smiled at her and explained that the rain was beautiful and that's why I made it colorful with pinks, oranges, yellows, and purples. I told her, that it was all right to make the best out of the sky's sad days because their tears weren't the same as ours. They were happy droplets.
The reel flashed to Dad. My mind rolled back to the time I made paper planes out of his business files. That inventive streak still had not left me by the time I was ten. Like a good father, even under his high-pressured job, he could only laugh at my busy fingers. He even told me they were excellently crafted. I loved that man. He was my support through everything. A levelheaded man with a big heart would describe my father.
Every contest, every award, he was there for. He never frowned upon my work, I was a skilled artist and he never saw it any other way. College was just back up, he told me with a wink. It crushed me the day I was left to be alone in my new apartment. Time would do me justice, though.
Ume, my terribly ill sister, your soul will never settle well with me. I let you down. In a way, the biggest fault was because mom never let anyone admit what you really were. The doctor's diagnosed your condition the years I was in middle school. Your unbalanced outbursts had gotten so bad; we had to move closer to your rehab facility. I remember the scary moments they came to take you away and you were locked up for months. Funny, I'm the one who is slowly drowning in a pool of insanity.
I remember the day you graduated with honors.
I recall the day you got married.
The way he looked at you, the man you cherished so dearly, and I knew that you were going to be ok. We all did. Ume, you crazy girl, I love you because you are my sister. But that's the only reason. The other part of me resents every make up of you. You caused our family years of emotional pains. You unstable nightmare, you were the reason mom and dad almost got a divorce. Ume, all you caused us was grief.
You were a twisted individual.
Maybe, maybe that's the reason, I thought as Jason opened the door more.
Maybe that's why I despised him, Kaneki, as much as I did. His Ghoulish demeanor, it reminded me too much of you. Those hollow eyes were equivalent to yours. That quiet unpredictable personality was too much of a reminder. Ever since he left the shop, he couldn't decide whom he was. The moments we spent together drove me mad. I had long since made a pledge to always be truthful, recognized as either black or white. But not him, not Ume, each fought that dreaded demon grey.
Ironically, the day Kaneki gave me pencil and paper while I was locked in the bathroom. It was clear; in my mind I saw his portrait in more than just that faded grey. I pictured him with vivid colors…like the rain.
My mind's reel started to dissolve the minute I was shoved into the room. Again, I stumbled upon the dirty-checkered floor. I managed to dodge a puddle of blood as I stood a few feet from Kanek's side. Was this not pointless? Every time I was brought back here, he wouldn't say anything. I couldn't blame him; he was still confined. There wasn't he could do.
"Don't you want to see him?" Jason said with a sly smirk. His knuckles chastised me as I stood between them. I was beyond rattled. I was sick with worry.
I swallowed roughly, "Why is it you would turn on your own kind? Aren't you creatures a band of misfits together? Kaneki, he's-" I paused, "he's a Ghoul like you. Doesn't make any sense." Jason let out another belly aching laugh.
He twirled his metal tool, "Ah nothing slips past you. You seem like a clever girl; you might as well know what you've been mixed up in. After all, answers to that seem like such a small talk in the large seam of things."
A clank of chains and a whisper of giggles echoed the room.
I shook off the noises, "This wouldn't have anything to do with gaining power, would it?" I had to control my hoarse weak voice from cracking. Jason pulled the mask from his face. It was hard to stare at those sneaky narrow eyes.
"Hm, if I hadn't seen you at the banquet, I would have guessed you were under hire for the Doves. Not my favorite ring of people, might I add," Jason said as he adjusted his tight collar. I pinched my brows but refrained from asking further.
"I'm guessing that's it then," I shuffled my weight off my bad leg. The blood still dripped to my ankle. My tender sides ached as I continued, "Someone's threatened you, your power, and in order to preserve your rank-you take those who have strength hostage. " I gave him a hard stare.
Another couple rounds of snorting laughs broke the silence. Honestly, he was making me question if I was in the right state of mind. Why didn't I find any of this humorous?
"May I ask how you've come across this information? You're not a private eye," He glared down at me, "are you?" I raised a brow.
"Would it make a difference if I was?"
Jason clapped the metal tool, "No, no I suppose it wouldn't. You're still going to end up dead. However, it would be in your best interest not to die at my hands. I have a nasty reputation of leaving gruesome remains." I tried to hide the chill that ran up my spine. Again, more hushed giggles filled my head.
The man cleared his throat, "To answer your question, my friend Kaneki is a special Ghoul. A rare delicacy, if you will, even to us. His one eye skull has endless possible abilities. Let's just say, to matters short, a well known Ghoul and he share similar tasty traits." I watched as his mouth slightly watered.
I couldn't comprehend all of it, "S-so if you e-eat him?" I stuttered my words as the realization hit me.
Jason smiled, "That's correct, his Kagune will instantly become apart of me. Oh I can already imagine the sensation!" His jowls leaked like a hungry dog. I began to fidget.
"Then-then why do you eat humans?" I asked with a slight shake. Jason strolled passed me as he whipped his sleeve over his mouth. I held myself together. I watched as he began to shove items into his coat. The table near Kaneki began to grow empty. However, there was still a fluid filled syringe underneath the furniture. My eyes drifted from the object, as I hoped he didn't notice my stare.
Kaneki had mentioned something about it, in our previous visits.
That was the only word he managed to say.
"Enough questions, why don't you come see your hero? After all, that's what you were hoping for, no?" Jason grabbed a handful of Kaneki's hair, "He's waiting for your support [F/N]. He's waiting for those encouraging words."
The air was still as I thought about the man's actions. It wasn't normal; every other time I was brought here he ignored us. Now, it was a demand to see Kaneki. I slightly turned my head away.
Jason growled as he cracked his knuckles, "Get over here now! Or I'll peal your skin off layer by layer." I hesitated then limped my way towards the prisoner in the chair. I wasn't sure what I was about to see, each time his condition had worsened. He was running a close second to my wounds. Jason stayed behind the chair as I came into Kaneki's view. His head hung low once more.
Weakly I knelt in front of him, "K-Kaneki?"
I looked at Jason, which he nodded with a sinister grin, "Go on."
My eyes began to look over his body. That's when I noticed the missing fingers and toes. I saw the exposed bones in the joints, the massive spill of blood, and the deterioration of his clothes. His hair even had an off shade of red tint to it.
I was mortified.
"Kaneki, Kaneki please, please talk to me." I begged as I laid a soft hand on his leg. I felt him jolt, "Please." Suddenly, he seemed to be brought back to life. However, it wasn't the reaction I had anticipated. I was startled when he began to shake with a cheeky laugh.
"W-what's, what's a thou-thousand minus s-seven?"
I leaned closer to him, "What? Kaneki what are you saying?"
In a fit of hysteria he threw his head back and let out another chilling howl, "Ah-ah what-what's one thousand-one thousand minus seven?" I felt his knees dance under my touch. The chains that bound him clanked endlessly as he rocked in his chair.
"What the hell did you do to him?" Worry was hitched in my throat as I looked at Jason. He was far above amused at this entire scene.
"I thought you would enjoy seeing the more fun Kaneki. This boy breaks at the simplest mind games. The physical doings, well that's just for my benefit." He smirked as he held up a key.
I denied his words as my brows came together, "Kaneki, Kaneki look at me. Look at me damnit!" I screamed at him. I had to wake him up. I staggered to my feet; bit the pain, before I grabbed his shoulders.
I dug my nails into his shirt, "Don't do this! Please, Kaneki I need you. Please-" I pleaded with him. My heart crumbled the more I saw him unmoved by my words. He twisted his head around like a broken contraption. He kept mouthing the same insane sentence. Numbers kept trickling out of his mouth. Crazy, he was crazy just like her.
Jason let out a tickle-like giggle, "Doesn't she smell appetizing?"
My heart nearly choked.
Kaneki stiffened as he instinctively began to sniff the air.
"Common Kaneki, don't resist satisfying your hunger. Aren't you just starved for a good meal? She's fresh and just the right size for a quick bite. After all, don't you want to save your friends at Anteiku? Don't you need power, to do so?" Jason hummed.
I pulled my arms back the second Kaneki's white over casted eyes rolled towards me. Clearly, he had believed all the lies he had been told. This new persona, this new creature was over taking him. I slowly began to back away.
Kaneki's tongue snaked outside of his mouth.
"Don't worry, [F/N] his Kangue is still hindered. But-" I heard the sickening click of the chain's lock. "You might want to run fast."
Instantly, I turned around and bolted to the exit. My body slammed into the thick metal door. I couldn't get my hands to even lock around the handles, as I had dodge Kanek's rapidly approaching body. Unlike me, he used the advantage of the wall, and propelled his weight off of it.
Like the predator he came at full force and knocked me off my balance. My body collided with the table and I could feel the throbbing pains running through my nerves. I squirmed relentlessly. My exhausted limbs were eventually pinned into the bloody pool. My hair began to grow damp from the liquid. Tears spilled, my lips trembled, and there was nothing more I could do.
Kaneki straddled over me as he held my wrists in one of his deadly grips. His bewitched eyes refused to recognize me. An eerie smiled etched his face as he leaned over me and inhaled my scent from my neck down.
"K-Kaneki, no stop! Kaneki please, please stop!" I begged him as I sobbed in misery, "Don't listen to him, it's me! Kaneki!"
My skin crawled as I saw his black-broken fingers dragged their way down my stomach. His jaw began to lather as he toyed with my shirt. Fear struck me incredibly hard at that moment. I knew, I knew…
I let myself blindly scream, "Kaneki don't! Don't do this! No-no!" I couldn't even get my legs up to kick him. He felt like a boulder as he sat on me. I felt my organs shutting down just from the weight alone. "He's-he's going to kill you. Kaneki, listen, please listen-"
The Ghoul ignored my cries as he grabbed a handful of the sweater's fabric and began to pull it upwards. The cold air hit my exposed stomach. His warm stained fingers raked my skin as he made undecided 'x's' on where he should start.
And all the while he kept chanting, "Fingers-my-my fingers on-on the bench. Centipedes in-in my ear-ears. Food, food to s-survive."
I didn't see it; I felt it.
"Kaneki, s-stop!" A screech of agony exploded from my throat as the Ghoul's teeth picked into the side of my ribs. The skin was pulled off the bone like tough jerky. The horrible familiar spill of liquid coated my right side. I chocked on a horrendous amount of sobs as another bite sank into me. The sounds of sloppy chomps of delight made my head spin.
I was being eaten alive…
"That a boy Kaneki! Oh, oh don't you look so much more delicious!" Jason let out a thrilling yell as he stood by. He watched, as I had to endure this torturous fate. My life, is this all that I fought for? "Tsukiyama, what a wonderful suggestion. Though going to be so jealous."
My lips suddenly leaked a strain of metallic waste. My teeth were swarmed with the red liquid. I couldn't even scream anymore. I felt myself fading.
My eyes glassed over. All I could see was Kaneki finishing a bark of flesh, my skin. I could see the crimson mess over his face. He leaned over once more; his tongue weaved around my open wound.
"S-stop." Tears spilled then my thoughts traveled to that reel of film. "Mo-mom, da-dad. I-I just, just want to go home." The blood ran out of the corner of my mouth and mixed with the salty tears on the title. The monster over me halted. His warm snorts relaxed from my side as he raised his head to my view.
He unhooked his fingers from my side, "Hide-" His grip on my wrist gradually released. He scanned over my body as his head began to apparently clear. The whites of his eyes remained. I didn't say a word as a loud boom, followed by a quaking floor, overtook my voice.
The building cried as cracks formed on the walls, things began to break off, screams from outside the room came. I rolled my head back in a last ditch effort to claim an item, a tool. My head swelled with blackness as my final vision caught sight of an explosion of smoke.
A weight lifted off of me and then I found myself resting against a soft object. The rounds of gunfire and rampaging snarls filled the room. I didn't bother to flinch. The pain soon engulfed me into a depth of empty darkness.
Not being able to see, not being able to get past the fog, I let myself fall.
For once, I allowed the Ghouls to win.
Not the end of the series.
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