As night fell, Mikael was busy tossing and turning in his bed.
"Why am I so restless..." He muttered to himself.
"Damnit, I wish I could fall asleep already..."
After a few minutes passed, the world around him slowly faded out as he successfully drifted off to sleep.
"Ah, so you've finally made it..." A familiar voice whispered.
Mikael quickly opened his eyes.
Upon opening them, he noticed he was not in his bedroom; instead, he was in a vacant, dimly lit room with only a dance floor.
Suddenly, he remembered the familiar voice he heard.
"L-Larkin...!?" He cried out.
"There's no way..." He chuckled nervously.
"A dream?" Another voice intervened.
Mikael quickly looked up.
As he did, Larkin was standing in front of him wearing a tuxedo.
"W-what are you..." Mikael stammered.
Ignoring his confusion, Larkin gave a soft smile as he extended a ha
Mikael stared blankly for a moment at Larkin's open palm. "If we dance, will you explain what is going on?" "Of course." Larkin smiled. Mikael blushed as he took Larkin's hand into his own. * As they stepped onto the dance floor, a soft classical melody filled the room. The two proceeded to dance. Suddenly, both men's appearances changed. The two looked as they did back in their days as members of The Organization. "You look..." Mikael began, his eyes twinkling. Just as they spun, he noticed his physical changes in a reflection as well. "So," Larkin cleared his throat. "I'm sure you have a lot of questions..." He chuckled. "Yes, well, will you answer them, or will you proceed to dodge them?" "Ouch!" Larkin let out a hardy laugh. "I suppose I deserved that, huh?" "Mm." Mikael nodded unenthusiastically. "First," Mikael paused. "Am I dead?" Lar
The room was dark, with the only source of light being a dimly lit lamp. In the room, a trio of rugged men seated anxiously at a desk. Across from them, a slender man dressed in blacks and grays and a crow-like mask covering his face's upper half. “We’ll ask one more time.” One of the three men barked. “Can we trust you to carry out this mission?” The shaded man relaxing in his seat with arms stretched behind his head chuckled. “For the last time, I’m sure I can help assist those already doomed by fate.” The men exchanged looks and begrudgingly handed the paper to the masked man. “We’ll see how you do within a month.” One of the men said, letting out a sigh. Carelessly skimming the paper, the man couldn’t help but think, how hard can this mission be? * The bell rang faintly to signal the start of lunch. The hallway, usually quiet with just whispers, and the faint sound of IV drips, was n
“245?” There was a knock. The Reaper froze for a second. Then he realized the knock was coming from the room next door. That must be 246. The man thought to himself as he opened the door. The man looked down, met with the big eyes of a tiny girl. “246, huh?” The girl jumped a bit at the sound of her name. “Y-yes...” she whispered. “It’s a pleasure to meet you finally.” He smiled. “If you’d like, you can call me Rick.” “Rick...” The girl repeated back. “Yep!” The man smiled once more. The girl gave a slight nod as she held her hands to her chest. “Why don’t we have a seat?” Before she could respond, Rick lifted her and placed her carefully on top of the table. “There we go.” He then noticed the girl looking down steadily. “Not the type of striking up a conversation, huh?” He chuckled. She kept looking down. “Well,” Rick began. “Why d
The car came to a jolting stop. “Huh?” Rick lifted his head lethargically. “This is as far as I’ll go.” The taxi driver said. “Alright,” Rick muttered, rubbing his eyes. “How much?” “A hundred and twenty.” “Christ…” Rick looked down at the girl who, to his surprise, was still awake. “Give me a sec.” Rick began feeling his pockets for his wallet. “Eh…?” Rick kept feeling his pockets anxiously. “Don’t tell me…”The driver mumbled. The girl suddenly tapped him. “Huh?” He glanced down. “Your wallet fell out when you gave me the Band-Aids.” She informed him. There was a sigh of relief from both men. “Thanks a lot,” Rick said, begrudgingly handing over a hundred and twenty. “By the way,” the driver began. “There aren’t any hotels within this town, but the people are pretty easygoing!” He laughed. “Hey!” Rick cried out. “W-wait…!” Ho
It had been a few nights since Rick begrudgingly agreed to house him and the girl in Sena’s Flowers. It was a small space, which was fine since it was just the two of them. The girl had been strong in her pleas to claim the bedroom; however, Rick wasn’t having it. “The couch is plenty big for you.” He would tell her. She would pout, yet it was all in vain. After numerous failed attempts, she gave up. One night, the two were having dinner that Sena had brought over from the local cafe. As Sena was setting the table, she pulled Rick to the side. “Hey,” she began. “Yes?” Rick looked at her. “Does she really not have a name?” Rick glanced at the girl and back to Sena. “Not really…” He mumbled. 245’s words proved to be true. The girl’s papers ended up not having much information on her background, thus no name. “Aren’t you tired of calling her ‘kid,’ though?” Sena questioned. “Listen-”
A few days later, there was a knock at the door. “Come in.” Rick tilted his head towards the door. Nothing. “Oi, Sena, I said come in!” He spoke up louder. However, the door opened to Rick’s surprise. It wasn’t Sena; rather, it was another lady. This lady was tall with broad shoulders. Dressed in a white blouse, with a long blue skirt. She had long red hair tied in a messy bun resembling a ponytail. Rick stared for a solid second. His vision wasn’t the best; in fact, he probably needed glasses soon, but this was not his landlady. “Um…“ The lady looked around. “Don’t mind me, I guess. I’m just here to get a few more of my things...” She mumbled as she walked over to the kitchen. Rick was floored. Was she in the right home? Was she an intruder? Would she pounce any second? Then it hit him. Before he and Maru moved in, Sena had mentioned a friend who had previously lived in their home. “Are you-” He
A few days passed since the sign on Sena’s Flowers' door read ‘closed.’ Sena hadn’t responded to Rick’s texts either. Rick put down the phone and sighed. “Yeesh, what a disappointing day.” He turned to Maru, who was staring out the window. “Mm.” She responded, not taking her glance off the window. “What’s wrong, kiddo?” Rick walked over to the couch and sat down next to her. “I wanted to go to the park today.” She pouted. “Don’t worry,” Rick began. “There’ll be several other opportunities to go to the park, just not today.” He smiled, twirling her hair between his fingers. “Mm...” Maru nodded, still pouting. “Ah, wait,” Rick began. Maru turned her head towards him in confusion. “I just remembered I need to get groceries.” He clicked his tongue in annoyance. “Do you want anything while I’m gone?” Rick questioned, turning his head to Maru. “Hmm…” Maru bit her lip while in thought.
“Thank you again, Rick." Abbey smiled as she stepped foot into her home. "No need to thank me, just tell Sena I said hi." He smiled. "Goodnight." She said, shutting the door. * "Hey, kiddo, I'm home!" Rick called up as he was walking up the steps. Maru quickly rushed over to greet him at the door. "What took you so long?" She huffed. Rick laughed and then realized he hadn't gotten the groceries. "Uh," Rick began as he scratched his head. "I forgot." He chuckled. Maru looked at him, confused. "You forgot?" She questioned. Rick sighed. "It stopped raining; if you want to come, we can go now." Maru's eyes twinkled. She grabbed his arm, not realizing her own strength, as she pulled him down the steps. "Wait!" Rick cried. "You need a coat!" He exclaimed. * "Ready now?" Rick asked, fixing her coat. "Mm!" Maru smiled excitedly. "Can