Chapter 9 - Person in the shadows
The murderer only tilted his head, still smiling, which appeared incredibly creepy. What became scarier - the guy slowly walked towards me, with the ax laid on his shoulder.
I quickly bent and took a glass bottle on the ground, throwing it at him. My back hurt, yet it wasn’t necessary at this moment. I was in danger and probably going to die. He only swung the weapon, and the bottle shattered into pieces of glass.
His face bleeds from the shattered glass grazing his cheek; he didn’t seem to mind, though. He came closer, and I froze, yelling. Running away would be critical; what if the killer swung the ax again and hurt me, chopping my head off?
The slaughterer was too fast. He threw the hatchet, and I knew I’m dead.
A few minutes ago...
I fell on my knees and gasped for air. What has happened? I... don’t remember anything. I’ve decided I’ll go home and suddenly, what happened? I’ve done something I don’t remember.
I examined the place I found myself in. I don’t remember anything. Why am I in this alley?
I heard footsteps behind me and faced them, not seeing anyone. “Who are you? Where are you?”
No answer. I stood up, deciding to leave the street, not knowing which way to go. This town is almost unknown to me, moving in here recently. Hearing the footsteps again, I saw a shadow above me. Remembering an article I read yesterday suddenly, I closed my eyes and yelled, attempting to run away.
A mysterious rescuer appeared in neighboring cities of Nightland – Person in the shadows. They only show at the time night falls. The Person hides in the dark and is very rare to see. The legend says only people who are at the edge of death can see them. However, only some people can see the Person. Some can’t; as a result, not everyone believes in them.
The reason for this is unknown. Yet, people associate it with Legend of the Breeze. There is a chance the Person is a Dark Savior. Although, it would be strange for species that kill to save lives.
The Person is considered as someone legendary, very rare to see. Only people involved with magic have the probability; still, the chance stays low.
People have tried to take pictures of the mysterious, probably dark type of savior, yet, nobody was successful. It’s a too shocking experience for someone with swift reflexes.
I have never seen them. I only heard, but I believe. It’s said people who believe in the Person can’t see them. Is it true? Maybe, we will see. And what’s their gender? Male or female? Their intentions? A hallucination? A real person? Someone in disguise? Do saviors exist? Or perhaps, have we been mistaken? How trustworthy Legend of the Breeze is?
Ax thudded, having a little different sound. A strange sound, as if two tools collided. I couldn’t see it. Am I dead? It feels numb.
I opened one of my emerald green eyes slowly. I haven’t died before, though; this must mean I am still alive, right?
I wasn’t in heaven. Instead, in the dark street with someone in front of me. And this time, it wasn’t Kurumi.
The Person wore a long black cape, a black fedora with a blue stripe, and long black boots. A cheek length forelock covered the left side of their countenance. Only one eye was visible; their face became covered with shadow.
I gasped, is this... The mysterious Person in the shadows?!
A mysterious aura surrounded them, a magical atmosphere, giving me a nostalgic feeling, and I remembered some pleasant moments of my life in the past. I felt respect towards the Person out of the blue.
The Person held a light blue, glowing sword, resembling a pirate sword. The light coming from the weapon sent me weird vibes.
The Person stopped the murderer’s ax by their sword. They scooped out the weapon and threw it behind the murderer. The weapon fell on the ground with a hollow thud. The slaughterer backed up, walking backward slowly. He attempted to get his tool back, and to my surprise, Person let him.
The killer grabbed his tool and ran towards them. No expression appeared on their face. They only watched the slaughterer running.
Suddenly, the Person dashed to the slayer, swinging the glowing pirate sword, as they ran past him. When they showed on the opposite side, the slayer fell to the ground.
My rescuer watched him, convulsing on the ground. It seemed he has terrible cramps. And what seemed strange — he bled a limpid liquid instead of blood.
The Person slowly laid their hand on the liquid. In their hand, the thing became a blue, glowing fire. The fire didn’t burn their hand. The rescuer balled their fist, and the flames disappeared. At the same time, their hand swallowed the liquid; he stopped moving.
The Person faced me behind and now began walking off, leaving me shocked and amazed.
“HEY!” I yelled at them, and they stopped walking.
“Who are you? Why did you save me?”
The Person only looked through their shoulder, resembling Kurumi, and smiled, not saying a word. Then, they jumped on a recycling bin, from the roof to the roof, and disappeared from my sight. I stared at the ceiling. Is this even real? Am I dreaming? This isn’t possible!
I gazed at the murderer, the girl; I noticed the bloody hatchet and found myself sad and shocked, knowing Kurumi is dead. But something felt wrong. Everything in me screamed in refuse, and I still came closer. The Person’s hair wasn’t actually white. It’s been light brown, and her eyes dark brown. I took a deep breath in relief, taking a step back again.
I should just go home. I took out the phone shakily, dialing the police’s number. Words got stuck in my throat as I spoke. “A d-dead body...”
The police asked me a few questions, such as the address and city. I gave them everything they needed. Once the call was over, I quickly grabbed the randoseru, threw the bag over my shoulder, and ran away as fastest as my legs carried me. I refused to spend more time at this place, not if the police will arrive. Realizing my shoes are tracking blood, I wiped the sole of the boots with grass.
I’m not going to sleep tonight. And I need a shower real quick.
Throwing the randoseru on the floor, entering the bathroom, I showered. The picture of the dead body formed in my mind, and I trembled. My throat is sore, and the image made me paranoid. I’m not sleeping tonight, not after what I saw.
I fell in my bed tiredly, twitching by remembering the murderer, blood, dead girl, and Person in the shadows. I must be having a lucid nightmare. No way this would be possible. Did I see the Person? Nobody will believe me.
I kicked my sneakers off, and they thudded on the wooden floor.
I’m tired, yet, I know I won’t fall asleep tonight. So many things happened today... The girl named Kurumi Sakura, the gangsters, and even the Person in the shadows... On the first day... By meeting her, my life got turned upside down. And, could she be the Person? No, I doubt—too many things.
I closed my eyes, hoping to get at least a bit of sleep.
I’m walking down a path feeling relaxed. I doubt anything would go wrong. I haven’t felt this peaceful in years; usually, it’s the heavy feeling in my chest, continuing to last. I question if this is life after death. Suppose there is a life after death, of course.
I distress the street and enter my school. Students talk with each other; I can’t recognize their words. I sit beside Kurumi, who gives me a cute genuine smile.
I don’t remember what our lessons were about. What I do remember is that we were laughing together, until...We appeared in the street. I realized I don’t see Kurumi anywhere. I turn around and see the slaughterer.
I yell as I see the weapon swinging and chopping off her head. It flies through the air and colors the walls in red. I feel sick. My head is spinning; I lose my balance and fall to the ground.
The slayer walks up to me; I’m paralyzed. I realize the body of the girl is lying beside me. My eyes open up wide in fear; my brain is yelling at me to run. My vision tells me this isn’t possible.
The world is black; it was filled with colors before. The sun hid behind the clouds. And, I realize it’s not the murderer’s countenance.
In front of me appears a tall black creature with red eyeballs full of hatred. I don’t have the energy to move. I can only shake and stare at the creature’s countenance. The heavy feeling in my chest is back; the anxiety returned.
I’m going to faint; the world is getting darker and darker... Blurrier and blurrier...
The creature swings the ax and chops my head off.
I find myself floating above the thing, used to be called the body—the neverending puddle of blood. Kurumi’s head rolls up to me, I jump away.
Can you jump when you’re floating? I don’t know. Her gaze looks up at me; I’m shaking in horror, feeling my sore throat and hands shaking.
“Look what you have done.” this doesn’t sound like Kurumi. It’s a demonic voice.
“N-No, p-please...” are my last words before the darkness swallows me. The creature is the darkness in me.