Shinsekai yori - Reaper

Chapter 9 – Job

It didn’t take too long for me to be sent on an elimination mission. After all, that’s what I was raised for. You know, I rather liked the expressions of people all around that tiny village as I entered it alongside the priest. It really felt like I was death incarnate, it was just too bad that they couldn’t see the smile behind my mask.

First, we were to meet with the education board about the specifics of the target. For a moment I thought that it wouldn’t really be all that fun if my target was a child.

Aw shucks, of course! What was I thinking, right? There’s no way it would be anything but a child. Since it seems that after psychics get past a certain age, they stop being suspected of being serial killing psychos, or so I heard. I mean, I’ve never been ordered to kill an adult, and I’ve been in this line of work for quite a while.

Anyway, they all looked so nervous with me around, it almost didn’t feel like they actually wanted me there. Oh. Oh! Right, right. I see, they didn’t want me around, but they wanted the possibly-Fiend kid gone more than they wanted to not call me. Sheesh, everything is so complicated.

So, I savored in their fear behind my mask, knowing that she was with me, my beloved… The priest talked at length with the Board of Education until they completely convinced him of the kid’s Fiend tendencies.

“Here, this is your target, be done with him tonight, while no one is watching.” With trembling words, he handed me a photo of a small kid. Oh, what wicked eyes. I thought to myself sarcastically. Gotta get rid of the menace. I was about to go on my way, whistling, when an unexpected thing happened.

The doors burst open and a woman stomped her way in, with a couple of men trying to stop her. She practically howled. “Why? There is no way that my Fritz is going to become a Fiend, so why?” She fell on her knees in front of me, tears streaming down her face. You know, I was really touched, you know.

So I handled it the best way I could. I kneeled in front of her and ignored the hiccup of fear she let out. “Don’t worry, ma’am, I’m a specialist, and I don’t kill innocent people. I might decide that the little boy is not to die tonight.”

The relief in the woman’s face was matched by the outrage in the voice of those around. “What? How dare you? You don’t decide anything, you are just to eliminate whoever you’re told to.”

“Shut up!” That never failed to work, they always seem to think that we’re like chained hunting dogs, but really, once we teach them that we’re more like wolves, they get real quiet. Hey, we do deliver results, you know. “I reserve that discretion. If I do decide to not kill the boy, you are free to send another Reaper or send me in first if he does become a Fiend, which I can guarantee you he won’t if I decide to leave him.” Oh man, I sounded so cool as I said that, you have no idea.

“Oh, please, thank you, please, spare my Fritz, please, please, he’s done nothing wrong.” She sounded so pitiful.

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