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A World of Grey { accepting }

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Hayato looked back at the Bikaku once more. She reminded him painfully of his father. He turned to the group of investigators. "If you want to go ahead and leave avoiding any further casualties I'm perfectly fine with that. However, if you want to act like idiots and try to charge straight at us, note that I'm perfectly happy to go and raise my ranking up a level. Besides, doesn't eating you mean eating one less of your comrades?" He grinned behind his mask. "So, your choice." He let another two tentacles burst from his waist, making that two on his arms and two pointed straight at the group of investigators.

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Kazuya muttered some choice words under his breath as he saw his attack missed the ghoul--damnit, damnit, how could they expect him to fight an A ranked ghoul without giving him a proper quinque?

The pink-haired male suddenly wished he'd taken more time to oversee the construction of Baumgaertner, and bothered to put in some extra hours during training. God, why didn't he think of this beforehand?

"I believe you dropped these. And tell me, have you heard of the Che She Lian raid?"

His blood froze in his bones as the other ghoul spoke, soft breath touching his ear. Kazuya instantly stiffened, his heart beating painfully rapidly, and in his sudden terror the male could barely reply.

Che She Lian? He'd heard mentions from his father and siblings, them all being higher officials in the CCG's branches, but never once had he given them any thought. After all, Japan was busy enough dealing with their own ghouls without any extra added ones from China.

"Once or twice," he replied earnestly, hardly daring to breathe. He gripped the hilt of Baumgaertner--would it come to a close-ranged fight? He was already a dead man walking, then.

His fingers shook as he held the hilt tighter, and in desperation couldn't help but ask:

"Are you going to kill me?"




The fox had failed to end her sentence about peace before she was engaged in combat--how ironic was that? Amaris took a look around--a border of CCG officers had been set up, each and every one armed with a quinque and with clear hatred burning in their eyes.

"I wonder," Amaris said, turning so she faced the officers. She could hear them muttering amongst themselves about the mask, that the Marquise had truly settled in Japan.

Well, she didn't wear it for no reason. Amaris narrowed her eyes, kakugan glowing a bright, bloody red, and raised an elegant hand, her kagune pointing forwards.

"Balançoire," she said, swinging down into position. She rushed at the investigators without a second's pause as she turned sharply and raised her kagune, the four tentacles sliding together as one thin, sharp blade, and sliced one man straight across the chest.

Shrieks rose into the air as she jumped back, landing and straightening up to meet the furious eyes of the investigators, gathered around their fallen comrade.

Amaris sighed irritably--what a pain. With them huddled so closely around the man, it would be harder for her to feast.

Well--she'd just have to take them all out, no?

An investigator threw a quinque at her--daggers, how useless--and with an audible crack Amaris caught the flimsy thing and threw it to the ground, turning to the direction of the fired missile.

She locked eyes with a young investigator--a new recruit, maybe? The girl cowered behind her superiors, obviously nervous, and Amaris couldn't help but smile as the girl's eyes widened, afraid.

A new target, maybe? Too good of a meal to let loose. Her rinkaku floated around her, raised tentacles in the air for intimation, and the dark brunette rushed at the girl with surprising speed, prepared to strike--


Blinding pain fills her side as she feels the clear cut of a quinque slice through her arm, successfully riding the appendage of her forearm. She turns furious eyes on another investigator, this one with anger and desperation and hope in his eyes--

Her rinkaku pokes through his neck a second later, the other three tentacles directed towards the girl, who has now begun to run.

Amaris staggers, the shock of a sudden injury getting to her in the heat of battle. Two are used to ward off other investigators, who have now begun to gather around her--

"The Marquise!"


"Medic--we need--"

"Aim for the head!"

I will not die.

She spears her way through the crowd, determined to get towards the young investigator, determined to get her to pay--

She catches another investigator in the air, ripping his qunique from his hands and striking him through the stomach. She slices at others gathered around her, and then she sees the girl--

A second later, there's the sickening crunch of bones and a loud shriek, and Amaris uses her kagune to propel herself into the air with all her might, leaping backwards to land directly next to the fox, and--

God, her arm's a mess. The crowd is heading towards her now, obviously angered, and for once the brunette considers the possibility that she may be in out of her head.

Amaris has half a mind to leave the fox, who seems to be suffering a moral crisis, to the investigators--at least that'll placate their need for ghoul blood, but--

The look she receives when the fox looks up and--

"Can't you see how... how... pointless it is?"

""This is what my parents have taught me."

"We simply do not belong in this world!"

The investigators are drawing closer.

"Self-defense is not the same thing as killing," Amaris tells the other, thinking it so ironically foolish that she would be repeating the fox's words, and she nudges the other's bikaku with a thin tentacle.

"You should go." A small, slightly manically laugh. "I may or may not have angered everyone here." Her kakugan glistens in the night; dark, dark black. "The word 'ghoul' has been contaminated over the centuries. People think of them as vile, foul creatures, and though they might be right--"

Another nudge. From the corner of her eye, Amaris sees the investigators readying quinques. She urges the fox to get up faster, to collect the pieces of her broken humanity off the floor and store them away until at last one day it was peaceful enough to fix it again.

"Humans are evil, evil beings as well. Don't spend so much time villianising yourself." Amaris looked the other in the eye, curious as to what she was thinking at the moment.

"You're nowhere near as bad as the rest of us." She watches as the Lion traps a pink-haired quinx in the corner, as the newcomer, the white-haired ghoul, mercilessly slaughters another.

"Go back home. You have parents. Don't make them lose their daughter." She feels a bit silly, giving someone the same age as her instructions, but this ghoul was just so wonderfully naive. Amaris tilts the side of her mask up, her face revealed only to the other with her kakugan still in place. "And if you wanna get a cup of coffee . . . I'll let you know how I fair after this."

The investigators are now running, prepared to attack.

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Hayato looked at the lady on the floor once more. He might have been that kind of person, if it weren't for the turn of events that was his life. If it wasn't for the Esko and the other two who had murdered his family. So instead, he turned himself into a S going on SS level monster who already had already killed at least two hundred people.


He looked round and saw a investigator with a.quinque in the air, ready to strike Hayato, eyes burning with fury. "Hello. Just so you know that was an idiot move on your behalf." Hayato's kagune went and pierced the man through his stomach.




"We need help!"


"Dammit that ****ard!"


"I heard the white haired dude's rank increased to SS!" Someone shouted. So now he was a SS level monster who had killed at least two hundred and one people. He felt a quinque knife graze the side of his stomach. He cursed and looked at the investigator. The investigator slowly backed off. Hayato turned back to the Bikaku.


"You're not a monster like I am. At least you have a family which you can turn to. I'm a loner who killed hundreds because I was obsessed with killing the guys who killed my family. I've thrown every little piece of humanity my parents and brother gave to me. Only when you've done that can you antagonize yourself like what you're doing right now."

Edited by SULDhasno

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Once when Halla had been a young child and her family had visited her father's ghoul parents in Sweden during the winter, she had fallen into ice accidentally while playing around. In the soul-freezing coldness she soon became numb while she desperately tried to get up back to the surface.

But ah, her body had been so heavy, so heavy. It would've been just so much easier to close her eyes and just sink.

Then a flash of white and red pierced the ice as her father's bikaku reached her, the kagune warm and firm as it lifted the tiny, frozen body back up to the air.

Right now Halla felt like drowning, except nobody was going to come and help.

"Self-defense is not the same thing as killing."

She lifted her head and saw the lady, who was nudging her with her rinkaku surprisingly gently.

Her arm was horrifically wounded - when had she gotten wounded? - and her clothes were spattered with human blood, by the smell.

Looking around with more focus, Halla saw how more and more CCG investigators were appearing. The Asian girl had cornered a quinx and asking him questions but so far the investigators were more interested at Halla, the lady, and the white-haired boy. Limp bodies were scattered across the scene.

"In their eyes, it is. A murder," Halla said coarsely, her voice heavy with tears she could not shed. Not now, not today. But someday they'd flow.


"You should go. I may or may not have angered everyone here. The word 'ghoul' has been contaminated over the centuries. People think of them as vile, foul creatures, and though they might be right--"

A laugh and another nudge.

Yet still, Halla couldn't move herself, even though her surviving instincts roared with joy when the other said she should go, agreeing with the lady - on both the plan she should go and that ghouls were exactly what humans thought, to a certain extent.

The investigators' faces were masks of hatred or horror as they started to put their secret plan into action. There wouldn't be much time.

"Humans are evil, evil beings as well. Don't spend so much time villianising yourself."

Avoiding the straightforward gaze of the lady, whose eyes seemed to drill into her very soul, looking for answers and instead Halla met the gaze of an investigator, who had a grim smile on his scarred face.

A shudder ran through her.

Humans were evil, too.

Why was there so much evil in this goddamned world?


"You're nowhere near as bad as the rest of us. Go back home. You have parents. Don't make them lose their daughter."

Realization hit Halla. How selfish has she been, forgetting how her actions affected her family? Staggering up she finally broke free from her paralysis.

"And if you wanna get a cup of coffee . . . I'll let you know how I fair after this," the lady said and lifted her mask slightly and showing her face, which now was gentle yet stern.


Suddenly the white-haired boy turned to the duo and spoke to Halla with a confident voice even as the investigators were yelling his ranking should be raised to SS.

"You can't say something like that. At least you're not a monster like I am. At least you have a family which you can turn to. I'm a loner who killed hundreds because I was obsessed with killing the guys who killed my family. I've thrown every little piece of humanity my parents and brother gave to me. Only when you've done that can you antagonize yourself like what you're doing right now."

Why did they both care so much about her?

Usually ghouls fought each other when they could and left the weak behind, following the ancient rules the nature had written when life was formed on this rock.

This scene was the perfect representation of the nature's cruel law. This scene here was the showdown between the dominating species of this planet and their complete annihilator.

Yet, even though ghouls had existed for centuries, never had they won against humans. With simply their willpower to not die, the humans kept ghouls in check and developed better technology every day.


"Even if I back down now, they will follow me," Halla said quietly, yet with a different strength in it. "They probably have this are under strict surveillance now," she continued, pointing to the sky where a helicopter was approaching. Just how much power were they going to throw at them, wave after wave humans until they pile up into mountains?

"And besides, your arm doesn't look that good." It was healing, of course, but not fast enough. Halla's eyes were like two glittering stones, hard and cold, when she turned her gaze back to the humans. None flinched, their hatred too much.

"Look at them. They don't look like they're just going to let me go, right?" she said with a low voice as she swished her bikaku, feeling stronger from the quick meal she had had. A sense of protection came to Halla, not entirely unwelcomed. She'd just have to live apart from her family for a while until things have calmed down, she concluded as she started crouching.


"You three will die here," the fox said, her voice filled with emotion. "I have experienced some kindness from you and I understand why you want me to leave, but I cannot back down anymore." That's what she said, but her voice was still lightly wavering. Her mind had concluded that if she escaped now, the ghouls here would probably die, and even if they did survive, the humans will realize there was an alliance of some sort between her and them.

The investigators attacked, the first ones with some long-ranged attacks as the close-ranged started running closer.


Time was up.


Halla would have to drown or become her own savior, reaching down beneath the ice and picking herself up.

Edited by Gildraug

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Hayato looked back at the investigators. They all had faces contorted with fury as they surveyed the mass of bodies scattered everywhere. Hayato realized that about half of them were because of him. He had killed about fifteen people in about fifteen minutes.


Then the investigators came charging. No time for that. He leapt out of a volley of shots fired at him, landing right in front of the investigator and gave him a good kick that sent him flying. He turned to another investigator, and with his two free tentacles sliced his chest. He launched himself towards yet another who seemed to be targeting the other rinkaku and plunged his kagune hand-blade straight into him. And there he continued to slaughter even more investigators until the remaining ones decided to stay back. They seemed even more angry. Hayato realize dthat he was covered in blood. Now he had killed about thirty people in seventeen minutes. He turned back to the Bikaku. If only he had turned out to be a person like she was...


"May I ask what your name is?" He asked quietly.

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As the white-haired boy started his deadly red dance with the investigators, Halla could not help herself from marveling the smooth, clean way he seemed to simply erase the humans who crossed his path.

The dance accelerated into a faster pace until the investigators had no choice but to stop their charge, leaving a fresh set of limp bodies on the ground.

So much death and sorrow were harvested today.

"May I ask what your name is?" the white-haired male asked quietly as he came back, covered in blood. The whole scene was so absurd - Halla had just witnessed him killing about fifteen people within two minutes or so, and yet he showed such gentleness and kindness.

"For humans, I am the Arctic Fox. For others, I am Halla," she said ever so quietly to make sure that the investigators would not hear.


Sharing names was something ghouls did rarely to others than those they trusted - if there would brew rivalry between these ghouls, they could easily betray each other by sending the CCG anonymous information.

But Halla didn't feel afraid.

She could trust these ghouls, right? Even if they didn't share her ideals, it didn't mean they were evil in heart.


"May I inquire your names?" Halla replied in kind, still keeping her voice low and having an eye for the investigators. They seemed to be waiting for the ghouls' next move.

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A couple years after An and her mother moved to Tokyo, she recalled how her mother slowly unraveled the reason why they left Nanning. The reason why she didn't have a father. The reason Lan wasn't here. She recalled being curled up on the couch, while her mother stroked her hair and fought to hide the grief in her voice. An listened, and absorbed what her mother had to say about Chi She Lian and the infamous raid. Lan was hiding in their compound, while her father fought to protect them. An and her mother were out on a day trip and were greeted with the mass of white coats stained red.


It wasn't fair.


"Once or twice," the dove replied. Interesting. The dove knew little about their counterparts working in China. The beat of his heart seemed to accelerate and he tightened his grip on the quinque he was holding.


(He's afraid of you.)


An stiffened. By the look of his quinque and his stance, the dove's rank was on the low side. An accelerated heartbeat. The fear in his voice. His sudden gasps of breath.


(I was like that too. Can you imagine me? The way I hid shaking, only for my breath to be stopped by the blade. Can you do that too? Show me.)


"Are you going to kill me?"


His voice pushed through An's thoughts. Her eyes widened, and her kagune began to slightly recede.


Why was she able to kill that investigator (the filthy murderer) without hesitation three years ago, but her older counterpart had to decide if she wanted to let this quinx die?


"Run hatchling, run," An replied. "Live for another day, week, year. Strengthen your aim, win, lose, die. I could care less, but you're vulnerable in this twisted world. Train yourself, and then we can see how far you've come, 好嗎?"


'Am I a coward now?'


An slowly backed away from the dove and moved closer to the section of the alley the other ghouls were fighting (friend or foe?).


Hayato, her ally (we're in the same organization after all), asked for the fox's name.


'Did she say Halla?'


"May I inquire your names?" the fox murmured.


How polite of her.


"I am the Lion to them. For most, I am Kazuko," An replied, glancing at the investigators. In a lower voice, she continued, "My mother called me An."

Edited by XiaoChibi

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"Nice to meet you, Halla." He smiled sadly at the bikaku. "My name's Hayato." He looked back down on himself. There were bloodstains everywhere. Most of it was someone else's, except for the wound he had gotten on the side. He looked back at the investigators, most of them with faces filled with fury. Others looked very terrified. Someone yelled something which Hayato didn't really hear but it seemed to have caused the investigators to charge towards the four ghouls again. Ukaku quinques fired at them whilst the close-ranged quinque wielders started running towards them again. How many more did they want to die before they were satisfied enough to retreat?


Hayato quickly dodged out of the way of some projectiles, running straight into a koukaku user and kicking him, slamming the investigator into the ground.. Another guy was right behind him, a quinque ready to bring down on Hayato- until Hayato slide-tackled him. "I'll-kill-you-" The guy was on the floor. He looked back at the white-haired dude "You-killed-my-dad-"


"Does your dad happen to be Mr. Togashima?" The guy looked very shocked. "You look a lot like him. Well, it just so happens that your dad killed my mother." Hayato stood up and left the guy on the floor, who was trying to reach his quinque.


Another investigator charged straight towards Hayato. The quinque slammed into Hayato's arm, and the impact knocked him back. He cursed and released the appendage on his right arm, giving the investigator a good uppercut that sent him flying. Hayato looked back at his arm. It was bleeding but it would be fine.

Edited by SULDhasno

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"My mother called me An."

"My name's Hayato."


An. Hayato. A sense of warmth hit Halla as she heard the names and she couldn't stop a tiny smile from shining beneath her mask.


The moment was gone a second later, shattered by a new attack. Swatting aside most of the ukaku projectiles with her bikaku, she did her best to protect the others. Hayato leaped into battle once more, swatting down one and wounding another. A change of some words, unheard by others, were given, before an investigator attacked Hayato. Halla gave a small gasp as the investigator hit the boy, wounding him but not dangerously.

Soon the investigator was dead even before he had ended his flying from Hayato's attack.


A tiny group had slipped past the now SS ranked ghoul and reached the three others.

Halla didn't even think but suddenly saw herself as if from another person's eyes as she charged the group head-on, slamming her hands down, and giving a good kick at the first charger, then spinning around to hit the others with her bikaku, sending them flying.

A few bones cracked but the cries as they hit the ground belonged to living people.


Halla looked to the sky and saw a helicopter there. Time was really running out. Hayato and the lady were wounded and she knew that the humans would not stop anymore.

"We have to leave," Halla said audibly enough for Hayato to hear but trying to keep her voice down.

Think. It's one thing to say they had to leave and another to actually do so. She gave another look around and suddenly noticed a drain cover.


Drain cover. Sewers. Labyrinth. Ghouls.




"We need to create a distraction. Smash the walls or something. Then run for the drain cover as fast as you can and the last one closes it behind. The dust should be able to cover us until then," Halla muttered feverishly.

"There, we can either split up and meet elsewhere or hide deeper into the sewers," she continued, looking at each of the ghouls around her in turn, looking for their approval or disapproval.





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Kazuya felt his heart still pound thunderously as the other retreated, disappearing between the folds of the alley. Unable to stop himself, the pink-haired male slumped to the ground, breathing harshly.

He thought he was prepared; he thought he knew about ghouls. His family is renowned within the CCG for fighting them, no? He's read every source material involved on the subject and went to the lectures.

Even so . . .

Nothing had prepared him for something so . . . real. So horrifyingly real.

The ghoul . . . it spoke. It had breathed in his ear, he'd felt the soft tremor of a voice, and . . .

She had spared him?

Run hatchling, run.


Live for another day, week, year.

He catches the moonlight reflecting off a mask.

Strengthen your aim, win, lose, die.

But why did she care? Why had the ghoul hesitated, when he had been taught that they could not feel emotions the way humans did? Why did she warn him, when ghouls were bloodthirsty killers without morals?

He remembers reading a book, once. A book in which peace was widespread. When humans could walk safely at night without fear, when they could laugh, dance, live.

Monsters are made, not born.

He brought up the quote to his brother once. He had laughed, glass in hand and CCG papers in the other.

They don't live in a world filled with ghouls, the by had replied.

What does that make me?

He feels the pricking of his kagune beneath his skin. Sealed within layers of quinque metal, well protected. He feels the Lion's kagune at his throat, ready to strike at any time. He feels helpless, weak, and--

To become stronger . . . the layers would grow thinner. To become stronger . . .

To become stronger was to become a ghoul.

He's weak.

He feels his kagune retreat just as it had popped out slightly, and, staggering up, Kazuya makes his way to the mound of gathered investigators.

He feels hands touch him from all around, shouts.


"Are you all right?"

"Get back on duty!"

He's going to have to fight again, but looking around at the clear separation of the investigators and the ghouls, at the heartless beings with kagunes drawn and the disgust clear on the investigators' faces, Kazuya feels sick.

Where do I belong?

You're vulnerable in this twisted world.




She's joined all the ghouls, Amaris observes with a smile bordering on a frown. How? They had come to fight out of some desperation born from trying staying alive, not band together to fight and escape. So . . . how did she do it?

The fox introduces herself as Halla, and Amaris inclines her head. Surprisingly, the other two reply as well. An and Hayato, hm? How were they not worried for their personal safety?

Well, considering the white-haired ghoul--his name was Hayato, right--had reached SS rank with his killings, Amaris guessed that he didn't have much to worry in the danger department.

The brown-haired ghoul couldn't help but laugh. For all his talk of peace, the other was as animalistic as the rest of them--perhaps even more.

And the other? An, was it?

She was certainly . . . quiet. Amaris supposed that she and the--right, Halla--were alike in their quiet, effective ways of attack, though she certainly had to admit that the koukaku ghoul had a certain . . . sadness hanging about her. An inescapable, suffocating air.

She supposes that she owes them enough to introduce herself.

"Je m'appelle Amaris," she says, then clears her throat. "My name is Amaris. Pleasure."

She spears an investigator through the arm, feeling her rinkaku slide in and out of his flesh. As she works on battling the investigators that have somehow managed to slip as Hayato, she listens to Halla's plan.

No, she wants to scream. No, you can't, I haven't--I need more, I need to become more powerful--

Her thoughts are disjointed as she looks at the cover, then down at herself.

This is her good coat, too. Amaris gazes around, wanting to hear the assessments of the others before replying.

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"Je m'appelle Amaris," the female ghoul replied. "My name is Amaris. Pleasure."


Interesting. Amaris was clearly of Spanish descent...or was it French? An wasn't too keen on languages from Europe, and she had only focused on learning Japanese at school (she still had the slight hesitance in her voice--was it noticeable to them?).


A flock of doves had surrounded them, and hell, there was even a helicopter circling the area (are they that desperate?. It was the four of them against a never-ending amount of doves.


There were too many of them, and too few ghouls to fight.


"We need to create a distraction. Smash the walls or something. Then run for the drain cover as fast as you can and the last one closes it behind. The dust should be able to cover us until then," Halla muttered.




Amaris and Hayato were injured, so either of them creating a distraction was out of the question. Besides, An couldn't risk the possibility of Hayato succumbing to his injuries and dying (but isn't he a SS rated ghoul now?). Regardless, Hayato was an ally--a valuable one nonetheless for Vermillion. And Halla, her desire to keep peace wasn't ideal for the situation (didn't she get bumped up to a B rated ghoul just now?). Amaris...she couldn't bring herself to trust her yet. From their first encounter, An began to question if the ghoul would even want to help, even if she was injured.


'Can I do it?'


She hadn't fought any doves in the alley (did the pink dove even count?) and An was one of the ghouls that was least injured. Her kagune was also sturdy enough to protect her from the investigators while she fought.


"I'll do it. I'll be the last to go down."

Edited by XiaoChibi

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"I'm pretty sure I've killed enough people already. So I'm all for that. But, we need to do it quickly because I don't think we have much time left." Hayato motioned to the investigators who were gathering, watching the four ghouls carefully. They would probably attack soon, and keep doing so until either they were all dead or the ghouls before them were. Hayato looked down at his arm again. It did look a little bad. It was healing, but it would take a while before it recovered.

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Halla nodded with satisfaction as the other ghouls approved her plan, except for Amaris... A sense of hesitation hung to her like a cloak.


Yes, that was the lady's name. Such a fancy name! Not only that, but she had also spoken French! A tiny flashback hit Halla as she remembered how she and her classmates had sung some French numbers during the lesson when she was younger. Not that she recalled anything she had learned anymore, but the simple sentence of introducing one's self was forever stuck in her mind.


"Je m'appelle..." Halla said quietly, with a small smile. It had been years since she had spoken French, so her pronunciation was pretty horrible. She gave a tiny laugh.

"Apologies, I have to focus now," she said, still smiling a little, as if all the worries of the world had been thrown away from her shoulders by this simple sentence in another language. She turned back to Amaris.

"So, what say thee? Do you appro-"


The investigators made the choice for them. Without an audible order, the helicopter started sending bullets from the air.




Of course, regular bullets would do little to no harm to the ghouls, but Halla was quite sure these were quinque metal. Swinging her bikaku over the heads of the ghoul group she felt a few stings as the bullets hit her kagune. It didn't hurt as much as she had feared, but they had hit her kagune, after all. If some had passed her clumsy guard she didn't at least hear anything from the others.


The choice had to be made now.


"I'll do it. I'll be the last to go down," An said with a certain voice. Halla nodded with approval.

"You'd better get going, then," she said with an encouraging nudge from her bikaku. Halla then made sure she was close to Amaris and Hayato, should they need help getting down, and awaited for An's distraction.

Edited by Gildraug

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A . . . retreat?

She had never heard the word. To speak of such a thing would be an insult to everything she stood for, but then again . . .

Halla was an insult--or a blessing? It was hard to tell in such a world--to the idea of the ideal ghoul. And, well . . .

Her arm would take time to heal. Time, and meat. Was she in such a condition to fight? It seemed they had formed a temporarily, but . . .

Between 'friends' and kakuja, which do I choose?

Amaris doesn't know. These ghouls, they are interesting, but . . .

Her mother flashes before her eyes, all calm and smiling and relaxed.


And these?

Why do you not want to fight?

It's not a matter of honour, is it? The fox--right, Halla--has a certain pride to herself, in the silly way she stands for what she believes, though it goes against the laws of the universe and all the black and white that stands between--

And the others? What about them?

She doesn't trust Hayato. Not, not at all. He's too powerful, and in this world . . . only the ones with power win. If she's to come out on top, then he has to go disappear.

But . . . how?

That left An.

"I'll do it. I'll be the last to go down."

How noble of you, she almost wants to mock, but An is no fool. Amaris' chances of survival if left here alone by the others . . .

They are next to nothing, and it is in that instance that Amaris hates herself above everything. Standing here, surrounded by these ghouls that believe in peace and equality . . .

The colour grey sickens her, and it's everywhere she looks. Yet . . . they have won. For now.

She dips her head. Unwillingly, the small repeat of je m'appelle from Halla brings a small touch of a smile to her lips--she thinks that maybe, had she not been born like this, she would've worked in the language department of the government; words and meanings had a certain graceful allure--and she speaks.

"A retreat it is, then." A nod of acknowledgement to An--this she'll give, for she is not completely without feelings--and she begins to back away, rinkaku still in full around her should they investigators try anything else. They're closing in now, and she knows that if they do not act now they will have to fight--and even four ghouls--and one a SS, imagine that! And what about her?--will have a difficult time against what is probably the entire CCG taskforce--she doubted any other ghouls were foolish--or brilliant--enough to attempt something like this.

She realises that this is her causing, that she's the one who has drawn all the investigators here, and as she gazes around--to the back of An's head, to Halla's face, looking straight ahead with a grim and darkened expression, to Hayato who looks equal parts sad and murderous--

Will you die too? she silently questions.

Amaris looks to where the drain cover is, and prepares to run upon An's distraction. And, well . . .

The koukaku better make it out alive. After all, ghoul that has been destroyed by quinque metal hardly makes a good meal.

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This was an opportunity.




Kou smirked. According to the reports, four ghouls had appeared in an alley in one of the wards. He gripped Edelweiss in his hands and recalled the ghoul with white hair that slaughtered fellow investigators.

'They were weak anyways.'

Kou noticed that Kazuya, a Rank 2 quinx, retreat from engaging with the A-Rank ghoul Lion. Kazuya was...looking quite green at the moment, despite the orders from the higher ranked investigators.

'He's a quinx, why would he be scared? Doesn't he have the powers of a ghoul and an investigator in his hands?'

Kou approached Kazuya and tapped him on the shoulder.

"Hey, are you alright? You look a little sick."

'If you're scared, why are you even an investigator?'


An tilted her head to the right, feeling a satisfying crack and reactivated her kakugan. She felt her kagune emerge from her back, forming four appendages.

"Everyone, get ready to leave," An declared. "I'm going to start."

After her declaration, several of the doves began to charge. An materialized her lance on her right hand and slashed at the doves. Their anguished cries faded as she repeated the action. Then, An targeted her remaining appendages at the alley walls. The bricks began to fall, engulfing the doves and dust began to settle around the area. One of the braver doves ran with their quinque in hand.

"You'll die tonight, Lion," she hissed.

"Didn't I tell you guys before?" An replied, smirking. "I could've sworn that I said that I'll settle your lives."

Without another word, An slashed the dove's arm off and moved to impale the dove.

"Thanks for the meal," An muttered as she moved towards the drain cover.


Edited by XiaoChibi

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(First post! Katsuro is just beginning to starve. He is very hungry, but not so much that he can't use his kagune.)


Hunger. That was Katsuro's only thought. Feed yourself.


He only arrived in this district about a week ago, and he was now beyond how hungry he wanted to be. It had been about three weeks since he ate last (he didn't count the days). His kills had been taken from him three times; once by another Ghoul and twice by the Doves. Katsuro would only fight over a kill if he was very hungry, so he'd usually run. Tracking the humans took hard work, though; following them as they went about their lives and waiting for the opportune moment to strike. This took hours to complete, and more often than not they'd go into a building or meet with someone else. The humans were getting smarter.


Every fibre of Katsuro's being was bent on finding food. It had been days since he licked his hands clean in hunger. It was almost like divine intervention when he smelt the aroma of fresh blood on the winds. Food! A meal after the long nights of pain and discomfort, after all the fruitless waiting.


He made his way into the deeper parts of the city, clambering down from his night refuge and racing across the pavement. He could hear sirens in the distance. Sirens? Were there Doves around?


The hunger in his body wracked his senses. Keep going, it said. You need to eat. Katsuro continued, blindly forging ahead to the delicious food that awaited him.


The smell of flesh grew stronger. His hunger was now a pounding sound in his mind, driving him forward to salvation. The sirens were louder, and he could hear human screams in the distance. He could smell humans, and also ghouls. What was going on? Did it matter? Katsuro kept going.


It was heaven and hell at the same time. Bleeding Doves littered the ground around him. So many beautiful bodies to feast on! These could feed him for such a long time. The cruisers of the CCG flashed their lights as the doves aimed their weapons at a small group of people. They were surrounded, with no hope of escape. Those people were certainly ghouls, as they all had their kagune deployed.


Part of his mind nagged that he should get eating. He was starving, after all.There was plenty of food, and the doves would be distracted enough to not notice him if he was quiet. Katsuro was on his knees in an instant and about to bite into a corpse's neck when another series of thoughts occurred to him.


What if they did notice him? What if the Doves finished off the ghouls and turned on him? It was certainly a possibility, and no single ghoul could fight this many Doves at once. Even if they didn't notice him, there wasn't a guarantee he would be able to get away after eating his fill. And there was no way he'd be able to refuse such glorious pickings. This was the only way he'd be getting a meal this evening.


For the first time in his life Katsuro decided to do something insane. He reluctantly turned away from the bodies and towards the Doves. He was planning to strike at them from behind to kill as many as he could, so that the rest would flee and he could get his food.


How many of them were there? Katsuro didn't know, he couldn't count that high. He had to be careful about this, because if they noticed what he was about to do he'd be dead.


Stepping as silently as he could, Katsuro's approached the large flock of Doves. None of them noticed him, their attention trained on the battling ghouls. His feet were wet with the sticky dark blood of the bodies around him. He had to fight the urge to lick it off the ground.


Activating his kagune, a long smooth tail grew from Katsuro. The tail extended several times longer than he was tall, and ended in a spiked tip. This was his weapon, his only chance at survival. He urged it to lay flat on the ground, so as to avoid any unwanted attention. After a brief hesitation, Katsuro stabbed the nearest Dove through the chest with it, who fell bleeding on the earth. This caused a panic in the ranks, and Katsuro broke into a run towards them with no regard for caution.


He hit the next Dove in the face as he prepared to fire his gun, and then knocked two more onto their backs with his bikaku, slamming the full weight of his kagune against their windpipes. With a yell of rage, another swung a large sword at him, which Katsuro did his best to parry but fell somewhat short. His kagune glanced off the blade and he brought it around himself to intercept a blow. There were soon several more Doves around him, all ready to kill.


Blood. A night of blood. No matter which side won, that is what this will be.

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"Yo, Takaki, have you ever seen that lady before?"


"Why would I?"


"Well, I saw her in school... Once." Miteki pulled out his phone again and pressed delete.


"W-Why'd you do that?"


"Don't want anyone to ruin my popularity in school, idiot." Miteki did his grin. Then he stopped. "Wait a second. Oh woops, got the date wrong. Sorry Takaki, I'm going for the CCG thing tomorrow instead." Miteki grinned at him. They continued to walk.


"Say, Takaki, you know that S level dude with the white hair? Don't you think his hairstyle looks like Hayato's?"




The investigators started moving again. An was already engaging with the majority, but some had split up and began moving for Hayato and the rest. Hayato dodged a quinque heading his way and kicked the person straight in the face. He bowled over groaning, then realized that the white-haired kid was right next to him. He grit his teeth, waiting for the moment in which his life would be ended- but it didn't come. He eventually steeled himself to look, finding that the white-haired kid had already moved on and was tackling another groaning investigator.


Out of the corner of his eye, Hayato noticed an investigator. He looked slightly familiar. Had he seen him before? Oh, she was along with another of one of the guys who had killed Hayato's family. He turned away and noticed another ghoul, surrounded by investigators. He was attacking another bunch of investigators. Hayato was guessing that soon enough, the CCG would call it off and the survivors would retreat. He walked over to An. "Let's go. While they're occupied with the other ghoul." He walked over to the drain and kicked up the grate.

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"Let's go. While they're occupied with the other ghoul," Hayato said urgently. Halla then noticed that there had, indeed, appeared yet another ghoul.


He seemed to have a bikaku like she did, but his appearance was... he looked like a living dead. Thin and wearing old-looking clothes and no shoes, Halla immediately saw that he was a homeless. The mask was on so she couldn't see his face, which disturbed her slightly. Of course, all ghouls were wearing masks, but there was something about this boy...


"But-- We can't just leave him!" Halla exclaimed. "He'll get killed. An, too, if she won't be careful!"

The situation was sliding downhill. Just a quick escape and they'd make it out with An's distraction, the dust still clinging in the air. Here would be the perfect opportunity to leave. What to do, what to do?


The boy couldn't be helped. If he can find his way to the sewer before An does, then he has a chance to live on by escaping. If he did not... Halla tried to not think of it. She had to toughen up.


"No use in us staying here and gawking like some idiots. Let's go," Halla said and opened up the sewer cover, motioning Hayato and Amaris to go in first.




This was THE worst mission Chiaki had attended. Ever.


Four ghouls, one of them a SS, and about thirty of them.

The ghouls were still winning.

So unfair, Chiaki caught herself thinking. Those pests have killed so many of our comrades and they've only been wounded? And what have our mighty quinxes done? Next to nothing, she thought bitterly as yet more people fell down. Chiaki was closer to the backrow, where she could cover the wounded people who were taken to the medics.


One of the ghouls had suddenly attacked the group and hit the walls, creating an effective smoke-screen which hid the other three ghouls. Were they going to attack all at the same time from the dust, using the surprise as their element?

As a scream erupted from the center of the group Chiaki was sure they were all going to die now. However, there was merely a single, scrawny ghoul with a long bikaku standing amongst them all.

"The Hunter!" someone yelled nearby and Chiaki felt a cold wrench in her stomach. Not good. Not good at all.

Hunter, Marquise, Arctic Fox, Lion, and Centipede (I'll just use post-Aogiri Kaneki's alias). All, save for the Arctic Fox, were commonly known to be extremely powerful and dangerous.


She couldn't just let the Hunter slaughter her comrades!


Whipping out Ikuchi, her quinque, Chiaki slashed it towards the Hunter.

"Oi, why don't you focus on someone of your own size?"

If she could keep the ghoul's attention, their reinforcements would have time to arrive and take care of the ghouls, once and for all! A grim smirk crept on Chiaki's lips.

Edited by Gildraug

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Rin was panting hard. Man, this Dove had skill, quinx or not. She clutched her wound, where the Dove's quinique went in to free himself. The crimson liquid slowly dripped, and she splashed some blood on the crouch area of a female Dove, laughing hard after that. Oh man, love making those jokes. However, she was weakening, and saw the corpses laying on the ground. If we killed them all, we would have a feast!


However, the Doves could overwhelm them if they sent enough. She spotted another ghoul opening a sewer opening, allowing others to get through. censorkip.gif This, I do not care if I am uninvited. She hauled a dead human corpse on her shoulder, staining it with blood. Whatever. Just before the male quinx could get to her, she ran towards the sewer hole. COMIN THROUGH! She yelled as she slipped through there with her human prize, rolling in. She panted and stood up, looking through the hole. Don't stand there and gawk at a stranger ghoul, come on!







Things were not well.

Esko grunted. How were they LOOSING! Surely four ghouls can be defeated by over 30 officers! This is so censorkip.gif ing jolly.

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(Good Lord, I need to get a life.)


A tail. The Doves had tails, too. Their ingenuity would never cease to amaze Katsuro. At the same time, they weren't all that bright. This female seemed to want to fight him by herself. But this wasn't going to be an easy fight, he realized. There was a look in her eye he didn't trust. She seemed a bit off.


Nearby there was another ghoul fighting a Dove much like he was. Most of the other Doves were too injured to help, though a few did try and get struck down as quickly as they came. The majority of the healthy Doves were more concerned with the cornered ghouls.


The Dove yelled something at him and swung its tail towards him. Blood roared in his ears and he didn't understand it. He was already preparing to block an attack with his bikaku, and the strike was intercepted, but he still felt pain.


The tail was tough and armored, covered in spines. They were digging into his kagune. It hurt a lot. Blood dripped onto the ground before him, his own blood added to the pool of death. That was all it took for the fight to start.


The female brought her tail up again and prepared for another strike. Katsuro jumped backwards as she swung the tail sideways at him. He shot his bikaku at her midsection, but she lashed it aside. His eyes shone brightly with blood-lust as he readied his claws to rip out her guts. He sprinted at the Dove as she brought her weapon down on his midsection. Katsuro wasn't quite fast enough to avoid that, and he got crushed into the ground.


But the Hunter wasn't one to give up so soon, and Katsuro wrapped his bikaku around her feet while she prepared to attack again. He pulled her ankles forwards, forcing her to the ground and willed his tail to constrict itself around her entire body. A twinge of agony rippled in his body as he remembered his damaged bikaku. The Dove strained inside the coils of his kagune as he tried to squeeze the life out of her. Suddenly, a volley of shots pierced his torso and his concentration slackened. Weakness pulled at his mind as scarlet grew from his gray shirt. The Dove struggled out from his tail and grabbed her own, looking even more furious than when they started battling. Katsuro swung his tail behind him and bisected the poor fool who shot him. More pain.


That instant snapped Katsuro into deeper thought. If he stayed here, he would die and the Doves would take his tail and turn it into a weapon. This Dove would get the better of him, it was only a matter of time. He needed to get out of here quickly.


Katsuro turned away from the Dove and ran towards a nearby building, intending to use his bikaku to scale it and escape with his life. Then, he stopped. That would not work. They had their guns, he'd be dead before he could be halfway up.


What would he really be able to do alone? The Doves would be after him, and the other ghouls as well. They seemed to be travelling in a group. He wouldn't be able to last long without anything to eat, and it was a good thing he'd been able to use his kagune at all today, which was now damaged and needed to heal. Which implied food. Perhaps he should at least follow them, since he would be guaranteed safety by their presence. If not, at least his suffering would be reduced by however quicker their killing him would be.


They were going underground. Into the sewer system? Right now he didn't have many options... they could get food. They were all fit to hunt. Maybe they would let him have some... Why was he relying on kindness?


He was bloodied, hungry, and desperate. His gray clothing was smeared with blood and pierced by the many spines on the female Dove's tail. If there was anything he could to save himself, it was this. Kindness, the one emotion he never made room for in his life.


Coughing a mouthful of blood, he ran away from the wall towards the sewer grate just as the female Dove destroyed it. More gunshots. Pain. Katsuro sped up, sweeping the bodies of Doves out of his way with his kagune. More pain. He made it into the grate just in time to see the tail of the female Dove slam down on the opening to the sewers. The ghoul that was watching from the grate almost didn't move out of the way for him.


The female Dove yelled something at him. He didn't want to hear it. He heard it anyways. Katsuro kept his head down, still masked, and watched the lifeless corpse before him. His reflection. Thick brown hair, black eyes and red irises. Reflection. Food. Pain. He made it.

Edited by Coryn02

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Kazuya blinked as Kou spoke, watching the other man's lips form words but never fully comprehending.

It took longer than necessary to process the words and build up a response, his ears ringing and his head feeling as if it was filled with cotton.

"Kind of," he said, shaking his head to attempt to clear his thoughts. "I mean--uh--I--"

He stared down at their hands--Kou's so self assured, gripping his quinque en garde for any sudden attacks. And his?

He was shaking, he realised. Slightly, but it was still there.

This was so stupid. He looked back up at the grey-haired other--they were the same bloody age, how come he was frozen?--and did an awkward half-nod, half-shake movement that seemed more of a neck jerk than anything. Unable to speak, he simply stared at the other stupidly.

What should he do? Apologise for being a burden--which he was being, really, he never expected this--or talk about his experience?

He was . . . shamed? Lucky? He had been spared by a ghoul, told to grow. But . . .


Would dad be proud? he suddenly thought--maybe not, considering his siblings were so much more high achieving, but . . .

How can I protect anyone like this?

He feels about to puke. Lost brown eyes gaze around--how is everyone else keeping so calm?

Is there no room for weakness in this world?

He settles for telling Kou "I don't know", head snapping around as someone's kagune slams into the walls and creates dust, and just before they're all blinded by dust and rubble he sees--


The Lion is . . . defending? Defending the hurt ghouls, standing in front of a drain cover and taking on all that step in her path.

But . . . why? He watches as a ghoul slides down the cover, quickly followed by another--a new face, he hears screams of the Hunter and he feels sick--and . . .

But . . . how?

Should he . . . do something? He feels himself temporarily flare up, grey kakugan momentarily sliding up--but his kagune is weak, like Baumgaertner and himself--he has to stop them, before they hurt more people and . . .

He watches as the Lion slices at another investigators.

That could be his brother. His sisters.

He watches with his one eye grey, Kou at his side, and . . .

He can't do it.

He can't fight.

He has to . . . grow. But is growing . . . is growing leaving behind feelings or abandoning the fight against ghouls and humans forever?

He doesn't know. His kakugan twitches in place, red iris glowing in the midnight light.




Everything happened so fast. Amaris is taken by surprise at the appearance of a new ghoul she would've pinned as "savage"-- the Hunter, who seems to be bleeding, and the smell of blood . . .

The smell of blood flares up her internal sensors, and momentarily--

She wants to eat.

Hayato is bleeding, the Hunter is injured, and this new ghoul has just brought human prey--

She can barely take it anymore. And why are you all tempting me? She wants to laugh. It's too much, and Amaris never had much resistance against pleasure.

But . . . it's too dangerous right now. Not when they could turn their backs on her and abandon her at any given time, when An is holding off swarms of investigators and Halla is motioning for them to go. So . . .

She slides down the drain cover, winces at how disgusting it feels and smells. She drops down, and is momentarily distracted.

There's so much blood everywhere, and it is wondrous. She came out tonight to eat, after all.

Amaris gets a look at the newcomers--oh? There's a girl, with long brown hair and such lovely green eyes.

Lovely, indeed. For a second, the ghoul wonders how they would look served on a platter. With . . . with some lavender, yes. That would compliment their shade nicely.

Well, one day. She seems cultured enough, though Amaris can't say she particularly likes the idea of barging in with human. That was just calling for a fight over prey, and . . .

She doesn't dislike the idea of fighting, but her arm is still healing. And she still doesn't trust Hayato as far as she could throw him--and that wouldn't be very far.

The others? She doesn't mind An, and she has to admit that being the last man standing had a certain noble flair, and Halla . . . Halla was just a surprise all on her own. But . . . if it came down to a meal, she's sure even they would fight for an entire human and safety.

The other newcomer, the one they called Hunter . . .

He looks, for lack of better words, homeless. His clothing is dirty and tattered, his hair untamed. Amaris simultaneously wants to eat him and teach him some proper etiquette. A little bit of French maybe?

He looks so ridiculously young. And, well, there were ways to shape the young . . .

Her arm is beginning to heal, now--she can feel the skin stitching back together, an arm growing back slowly. With lack of RC cells--though not by much, Amaris would never refuse herself a meal--it was taking longer than normal, but she did have rinkaku healing speed and frequent meals to thank for her arm back.

So . . . what to do? She looks above--Halla, Hayato, and An were still up there.

So they had left her with the children. And, well . . .

"Bonsoir," she purrs, addressing the both of them. Who are you? she wonders with the just smallest hint of amusement.

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((Finally got around to making my first post))


The night was certainly eventful, graphic to say the least. To think that the city was so quiet, so calm just moments before this time of intense bloodshed. The atmosphere was still cold but tension, fear, and fury could be felt amongst those who were fighting, have fought, or of those who lay dying on the crimson colored ground around them. 'But why, of all times, did such a horrid event have to occur now? Why can't humans and ghouls live in peace for heaven's sake or at least learn to tolerate one another to some extent?' The answer is simple: its because they can't, because there's so much wrong and wickedness in this world. Or so people say...


Kira was tending to those who were severely injured or in too much in a state of shock to be of use for combat, she worked effortlessly as she helped aid the medics with the victims. The female's skills certainly were much better for battle yes, but there was just so much chaos and people in need that she couldn't turn a blind eye to the wounded souls. Though with the good amount of ghouls in the same proximity as them she made sure to be wary and careful with every thing around her. So much has gone wrong in such a short amount of time.. Kira's thoughts trailed off as she loaded another body into an emergency vehicle, a young male by the looks of it, though his form was so battered up and bloodied that it was hard to tell if he'd make it through the ride to the hospital.

With a heavy sigh the black haired female turned her attention back to her comrades near the front, one of them stood out clear as day to her. It was Kazuya, member of the Quinx squad like herself and a rather good friend of hers. Something was off with him however, the color was completely drained from his face and if her sight wasn't failing her, he was shaking as well. Severe shock no doubt. She had to get him out of here before he gets himself hurt or even into more trouble, she'd hate to have something happen to him. Kira strode over to one of the higher rank officials and explained Kazuya's situation, requesting that she take the traumatized boy away from the scene. To her surprise the officer granted her permission to take him off duty for the rest of the night as well as for tomorrow, though she was placed in charge of him to ensure his recovery. The female then made her way carefully to Kazuya, making sure to not get in the way of the fighting officers left. When she reached him, she gently placed a hand on his shoulder and pulled him away from the frontlines to get him out of his trance. "Kazuya, are you alright, anything hurt?" Kira asked, concern lacing her voice. "I've revieved permission to have you take leave for the night, though you'll be my responsibility."

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Kazuya gazed at the female before him with a shocked expression, then--

"Kira?" he blinks awkwardly, grey kakugan still visible. "What are you doing here?"

He looked up to the older female the same way he'd look up to his brothers and sisters--a person to be respected, someone he could depend on when things got rough.

But . . . as that ghoul had said . . . could he truly depend on others forever? What about his internal strength, if he even had any?

He watched as Kou's form faded away as Kira helped him from the frontlines to a safety border set up a way behind the actual fighting--how can you be so calm?

He nodded awkwardly, jerking his chin down. "I . . . I'm fine," he replied, his mouth as dry as sandpaper. "I just . . . I need some time . . ." the male attempted to walk somewhere, anywhere, but stumbled slightly and caught himself. His kakugan retreated slowly as he looked the other in the eye, his breathing coming out hitched. "I . . . just . . ." He flinched as the horrified screaming of an investigator filled the air, cut off abruptly in a split second.

"What are they?" he asked Kira desperately, eyes wide. The Lion's words ran through his mind, along with the teachings of his father, and . . .

How could they live in such a world?

Kazuya ran fingers through his hair, pressing his forehead to ward off the early signs of a headache. "I . . . thanks, Kira." Just the thought of what lay out there made him feel sick to his stomach, and . . .

He doesn't ever want to be left without backup again, forced to fight ghouls alone. Nothing . . . nothing could compare to that in terms of horrific.

He's a coward, but he's lived all his life as one and another night hardly matters. The pink-haired male is just eager to leave this all behind . . . and when he has to face it again, he'll deal with that when it came time. For now . . .

He looked at Kira, nodding for her to take the lead. Kazuya suddenly felt very small, surrounded by these investigators who knew what they were doing, while he . . . Sure, he was a quinx, but still a quinx raised in high-class society with bodyguards, where the only tales of ghouls appeared in textbooks and stories. Seeing this upfront . . . how did his family, how did Kou and Kira and everyone else stand it?

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((The crap is too real for me


Coryn your char alias reminds me of hunter x hunter. When I read it I imagine a green haired kid with a fishing rod.))


Hayato found himself being barged out of the way towards the drain sewer. He looked round and saw a female ghoul, carrying a dead corpse on her shoulder. And then again. This time a male ghoul, who he recognized from his mask as the Hunter. He looked... Homeless? Hayato turned round at the investigators. They didn't seem very amused with the ghouls escaping. Then he realized some of them were on his side, smack bang on his blind spot. An Ukaku wielders fired some projectiles at him, which tore at his shoulder and injured arm. One glanced off his arm wound. Hayato cursed under his breath and stabbed the investigator with his other kagune arm, plunging it straight through his stomach. The guy bowled over, his lifeless corpse creating a new small puddle of blood on the battlefield. Hayato shot a sideways glance at the rinkaku lady, who he could tell was hungry. She seemed to be regarding An strangely.


The investigators continued to group up, replacing any of their fallen comrades with reinforcements. Hayato thought he heard more sirens from the distance. He walked over back to the drain cover, parrying a Bikaku user's attempt to bring him down with a blow to Hayato's head. Hayato turned around and realized that the Dove's hands were shaking. The Dove realised that he had a very high probability of getting killed by this SS level ghoul, and he grit his teeth in fear as he awaited the moment in which his life would be ended-


Hayato walked on, not even looking back once at the trembling dove who he had left there. He was probably still there, shaking. Hayato jumped into the sewer as the smell of- well, sewers- hit him. He landed neatly inside and looked at the two new ghouls that had joined the party.

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Well, wasn't this a merry gathering? Halla thought to herself as she herself, too, jumped down into the sewers, trying hard not to wrinkle her nose at the smell.

There was another, more disturbing smell down there - blood. A brown haired female ghoul had brought a dead body with her, no doubt in hunger. However...


Hayato and Amaris were wounded. They'd be probably hungry very soon. Not to even mention the Hunter, who looked like he hadn't eaten in weeks. Halla herself was satisfied enough from the quick meal she had, so she didn't have troubles in controlling herself. But there was something in Amaris's eyes that unsettled Halla, giving her this ominous feeling she wished she didn't feel.


But things were probably going to turn ugly anyways. Now five ghouls, since An wasn't there, all together in sewers, two of them wounded, two of them hungry, and only one human body. Halla sighed a little but then glanced up where the sound of fighting was still audible.


"You guys go ahead, but don't go too fast or too far. I'll stay here and wait for A- the Lion," Halla corrected herself, remembering here were two newcomers. No need in just yelling everyone's names out.

"Try not to kill each other..." she said but then realized she could probably pull a few bodies down with her bikaku - if she was fast.

"Just a second."


Halla scrambled up the steel ladders to the mouth of the sewer drain and peeked outside. The dust was still floating in the air and chaos reigned. Hopefully An would be okay...


Swishing her bikaku, Halla pulled the closest corpses and dropped them down, trying to not look into the lifeless eyes of the humans and trying not to smell the sickeningly sweet smell of blood. She had to do this. After so much work, she will not allow those idiots to start ripping each other into pieces just because they were hungry! A total of four bodies dropped down before Halla retreated, afraid the investigators would notice if she took more.


"Eat. Quickly. And leave one for the Lion, in case she's wounded," she said strictly. "And take an arm or two with you. We can't just carry these bodies around, no matter how strong we are."


Speed was what they needed now. Halla looked up again, feeling anxious. An, please be safe, she thought.




Chiaki slumped down to the ground the second the Hunter turned around and fled, bleeding. She dropped Ikuchi, the bikaku's scales scraping the asphalt with a quiet scratch as her arms' strength failed.


She could feel some broken bones as she laid on the cold ground, blood seeping into her clothes, the sickly stench filling her nostrils. Was she going to die here? This wasn't her first mission, but to die now would be a shame, indeed! Gritting her teeth together, Chiaki took her quinque back into her hand and stood up shakily, coughing tiny spatters of blood. Ah, what a mess she was.


Looking around, Chiaki saw that only chaos reigned. Where were the ghouls? Had their reinforcements arrived? Have the ghouls called their packs to them or were they planning an attack? Information swished in the air as the helicopters confirmed that the ghouls hadn't left the area. So they were still here. But where?


"Miss, you are in no condition to fight! Please retreat!" an elderly female medic came to her with a stern look on her face. "Even your eyeglasses are cracked! You will be just in the way now! Come, come, I have no wish in covering more bodies with some white sheets," the medic said with a sad voice as she supported Chiaki while taking her to the ambulances.


Chiaki started feeling numb, still holding on to Ikuchi and hearing the voices echoing around her in strange ways. The colors were swishing around, until everything was just white, white, white.


"The shock is settling in, we need some..."


Sweet numbness. She closed her eyes.

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