Key Seven: Michael:
Italy is crying blood. Italy cries for blood.
Komui covered his nose and mouth. The scent of blood made him gag.
“Are you okay?” a woman’s voice asked next to him. The angel looked to his left at a woman with long dark red hair. Komui took a gulp of air.
“Yes,” he said. Rome had gotten too danger. More people are starting to disappear. Blood filled the air every day.
“Take your time if you need to,” the guide said.
“I’ll be fine,” Komui said. “Let’s just do it.”
“Alright,” she said. Both of them headed to the main office in Rome. It was raining this morning. That’s when the smell of blood is worse. The streets were unusually quiet this morning. Komui didn’t see any people around.
“Is it usually this quiet in the morning?” he asked.
“No,” the guide said. The angel had an odd look on his face.
“Don’t you think it’s because…?” he asked.
“That’s what we have to find out,” she said. “Please pay attention where you are going. You could get easily lost along the path if you aren’t careful.”
“Alright,” Komui said.
“Just stay by me, okay?” the guide said.
“Yes,” he said.
The stone on the ground started pulsing. The cracks screamed for more blood. It craves it. It hungers for it. It’s addicted to it. A few drops won’t do. The cracks in the ground needed more.
It started with children. The younger the fresher the blood. How many children disappeared? It took about eight for people to notice. Who was taking the children? No bodies were found. Just traces of blood and the child’s favorite toy in the rose garden behind the library.
This wasn’t just one city either.
Komui and his guide made it to the library. The smell of blood grew worse. Komui took in deeper breaths. The guide wasn’t fazed. She walked up and opened the door.
“Why are we stopping here?” Komui asked. The guide turned to him.
“We have to start here,” she said. The cold breeze hit her in the face. The angel had her eyes on her back. Where did they get this guide?
She walked into the library. Komui followed behind. A woman in her forties stood behind the desk. She looked at her ledger in front of her. The pair walked up to the desk. There were no verbal exchanges. None were needed. The guide slid a piece of paper to the librarian. She picked it up and read it. The older woman pointed down to the bookshelves across the room. The guide bowed her head and started walking. Komui followed behind looking confused.
More children start disappearing. The cracks cry for more blood. The vanishings started to move out to the countryside. Then it moved north. The water in Venice started to reek of blood. This should be enough, right?
No! It wants more blood.
Ever since he woke up, he wants more. That first taste turned him into a hungry monster. It’s going to be hard to keep up. He’s making the country smell like blood. How long before Italy isn’t enough? What will be next?
He can’t go above ground. His creator won’t allow him and his brothers to do so. The cross and nails were designed that way. They might wriggle free but they can’t go anywhere. Those nails were blessed to keep them still. They can never come to above the surface. Even Mam knew this.
But how long would that last?
“What are we looking for?” Komui asked.
“Shhh!” the guide whispered. She started looking among the books. Her focus remained locked. Komui looked around behind them. He noticed that weren’t many people around. No more seemed to be coming in either. He wondered if they got their too early.
“Um…” he started to say.
“Shhh!” she said again. The guide narrowed her eyes as she kept looking. Finally her hand stopped on the spine of an old black and silver spine. She yanked out the book and darted to the back of the library.
“Hey! Where are you doing?!” Komui asked.
“Shhh!” someone shouted behind him. He quickly bowed his head.
“Sorry,” he mouthed. The angel hurried to follow his guide.
It will be noon soon. More flowers will be blooming. They won’t go away. They keep picking them but more pop up. This morning was no different. The people even went as far as to cut off the buds. But now they were back again.
One by one, each of the flowers came back. But there’s something different this time. They started to smell sweet. Saccharine, almost. The scent battled and mixed with the smell of blood in the air. Don’t get too close to them. The parents have to drag the children away from the flowers. But their dull white petals look so innocent…
No! It’s a trick, don’t you see? Run from them. They are an omen. He is the one who sent the flowers. It’s all a trap for him to get more blood. But in reality, the people in Italy will not be enough. Where will the hunger go? Now that I think about, Europe might not be safe for long. He is just getting started.
Then there are his brothers.
Can they be stopped? Perhaps. But something has to be done soon. Time has become the enemy.
Meanwhile, Allen sat up on his knees, looking up with a pleading look in his eyes. Road looked down, smirking. She held a riding crop in her right hand.