Shinsekai yori - Reaper

Chapter 4 – Preparation

After that, I spent the most of a month in special classes about Karma-Demons. I can’t say that it was uninteresting. It must be actually be quite sad for those who can use Cantus to fear themselves so much. If your unconscious goes out of control you become a sort of monster… It must be hard trying to control that which, by definition, cannot truly be controlled.

Only at the end of the month would I discover the purpose of those classes. I was taken somewhere else once again. But before leaving, I was once again to enter the cathedral’s catacombs.

This time, it was in an impressive section. Every single surface was decorated with bones; it was as grisly as it was beautiful. “Wow.” I couldn’t keep myself from being awed. The bishop, who was accompanying me, seemed to have some pride in it.

“Really impressive, isn’t it.” Apparently those were all bones from people who, like me, could not use Cantus. Some, he told me, were from a time before Cantus even existed, while others were from the wars that finished the Ancient Civilization.

I’m still not sure about the purpose of having showed me that, perhaps instill in me fear of Cantus? I didn’t think of asking. But perhaps it was to remind me that we can all die. As if I needed to be reminded of that.

Leaving the cathedral wasn’t a big deal and I waited patiently for my next destination. Eventually, the vehicle I was in stopped near the entrance of a cave. I waited intently for instructions, which were actually quite simple, really. “Enter that cave, and don’t leave until you can prove that you have killed the Karma-Demon that resides in there.” No joke.

I would have cried you known, had I known what I would have to go through. But you know what? No amount of theory can prepare you for facing a Karma-Demon face to face.

But what else was I to do? By that time I was pretty much conditioned to listening to whatever the priests told me to do. Even if I ran away, what good would it do to me? They couldn’t kill me directly, but they could probably make me a pariah, no, even now I feel that I had no other choice but to enter that cave. Even if it meant that I would emerge from it twisted forever.

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