You --- are a monster.
Shiika Part 3
Just what in the world had happened, even Shiika herself didn’t know.
She just wanted to save the classmate in front of her from getting run over by the car.
In her view, everything was so completely destroyed that one couldn’t even tell what they were from looking at their shapes anymore.
The asphalt surface was upheaved; the cars on the road stopped moving from falling into the cracks of the road. The street lamps were twisted, and many wire poles were snapped in half as well. The sound of water spraying out from the broken underground pipes was blending amidst the constant cries of surrounding pedestrians.
Her classmate, whom was sitting among the debris, was gazing at Shiika with a stunned expression.
On hearing the classmate’s mumble, Shiika immediately widened her eyes.
The girl, who muttered this line, was no doubt looking straight at Shiika.
There was no mistaking it. That pair of eyes which soaked with fear --- was giving off a gaze of rejection mixed with disgust and tremor.
Shiika subconsciously gave off a hoarse cry before a white glowing light slowly floated above her.
A giant snow white-colored firefly was floating above Shiika.
--- Could you tell me your dream?
After the dream-like encounter with the round sunglasses wearing flirtatious woman, and answered her question, Shiika immediately fell unconscious. By the time she awakened in those deserted streets, “this” was already infested in her.
The Shiika who has spoken her dream, had become a Mushitsuki.
She originally thought everything will be fine as long as she kept it as a secret, and hide it inside her heart for the rest of her life.
It was supposed to be that way --- But
“(Mushi)…! It’s a (Mushi)! Run!”
“She’s a Mushitsuki!! Someone call the cops!”
People were crying in fear as they hurriedly distanced themselves away from Shiika.
“N-No… I’m not a ---”
Shiika muttered in a weak voice, as she walked one step closer to her classmate.
“G-Get away from me---!”
The classmate cried a terrified moan as she crawled away from Shiika.
Upon seeing this scene, Shiika subconsciously stopped in her tracks. It was as if the time had stopped in place, causing her mind to go blank.
She tried to ponder with a completely empty mind.
Till now, she had never been the center of attention before, she had always been living a peaceful life. Although at home she was often scolded by her parents, and she didn’t have any friends at school, she still hoped to continue living this kind of peaceful life.
It was true that she sometime felt chafed by this kind of lifestyle.
And precisely so, it was then she began to harbor this tiny wish within her.
A wish that was so insignificant that it couldn’t even be called a dream.
She had only confided this trivial wish once.
And as a result of that, everyone was now fleeing in fear, hoping to get away from her as far as possible.
She originally thought that the scene happening in front of her was just a nightmare, but the crying and screaming surrounding her and the sensation of feeling “connected” to the (Mushi) floating above her forcefully pulled Shiika back into the reality.
Things like these… I never wanted it to turn out this way --- !
Just then, next to the trembling Shiika, came the sound of police sirens.
She abruptly came back to her senses, and surveyed the surroundings.
The pedestrians, which were gazing at Shiika at a distance, had eyes clearly filled with fear.
Rather than calling it fleeing, it was more like she was afraid of staying there, hence she began to run.
“St-Stop following me……!”
The white-colored firefly flew towards Shiika, who was desperately trying to get away. Although Shiika tried to use her hands to make it go away, the faint glowing firefly easily dodged her arms.
“Stop following me, go somewhere else ---!”
Shiika burst into tears as she shouted. But the firefly still continued to follow her while gazing inconceivably at her.
Subconsciously, Shiika ran towards the direction of her home. Because of the events that happened which threw her into chaos, her rationality was driving her body to escape to somewhere that she thinks is safe.
Upon seeing the crying Shiika running pass by, the pedestrians all gave cries of fear as they ran for their lives.
“W-What was that?! Hey, isn’t that a ---“
“Kyaa---! I-It’s a (Mushi)……!”
In order to escape from the surrounding cries, Shiika ran as fast as she could. Even though she was already panting heavily, and her heart felt like it was about to burst, the fact, that she was feared by others, was much more painful than those combined.
Why…? Why does it have to turn out like this……?
While she was running, these questions had been going wild in her mind.
Why does it have to be her out of everyone to be infested by this terrifying (Mushi)? All she ever did was answer a question asked by the sunglasses woman. Why did it turn out like this?
Her stamina had slowly reached its limit, which caused her running speed to become as slow as her walking pace. But even so, Shiika was still trying her best to run home.
After running for almost an hour, she finally arrived to some place where she could see her house.
In front of the house, there were the figures of her parents and sister. When they saw Shiika, they all widened their eyes.
Her sister, Kazuha, was running towards her.
Shiika was running towards them as well, but upon seeing her parent’s reaction, she subconsciously stopped. Her mother hugged Kazuha from behind to stop her while her father rushed in front of them and spread his arms as if he was guarding them.
“S-Stop! D-Don’t come over here!”
At that instant, her mind went completely blank. She could not understand the words that her parents just said; it was as if her rationality had stopped working.
“W-Wait… What are you guys doing! Let me go! Shiika she---!”
Just when Kazuha was struggling to get free from her parents, an abnormality suddenly occurred.
Coming out from every direction and corner of the residential streets, was a group of figures cloaked in strange outfits.
Those figures were wearing pitch dark long coats, and huge goggles that cover their faces. Coming out of the alleys, other side of the walls, appearing on the roof of buildings… There were more than a dozen of them in total.
“W-What is going?! Those guys! Don’t tell me… Dad did you call them?!”
“I-I only called the police after the school had contacted me! That’s all!”
Ignoring the confounded family, a figure standing on the roof suddenly spoke:
“Anmoto Shiika. You’ve been enlisted as a hazardous target needed to be detained. If you accept our trammel willingly, immediately put your hands on your head and kneel down. If you show any signs of resistance or fleeing, we are entitled to inflict damages to you.”
“W-What are you people?! What are you planning on doing to Shiika?! The police ---“
The long coat wearing figure ignored Kazuha’s shouting, and walked closer towards Shiika.
“The police will not come. We’re the ones that are responsible for capturing harmful subjects like you. I repeat, immediately put your hands on your head and kneel down, Anmoto Shiika.”
Shiika, who finally managed to stop her legs from trembling to barely maintaining a standing position, couldn’t understand what was happening or could she have any spare mind to think what these people in front were.
On seeing Shiika standing in place not moving, the goggles wearing figure that was standing on the roof shouted:
“Immediately seize her!”
In the next instant, an unbelievable scene unfolded right in front of Shiika.
Next to those goggles wearing figures, abnormal creatures appeared one after another. Their size ranged between the sizes of a basketball to the size of a car; all of them had an insect's appearance and features.
With Shiika’s parents and sister’s gasped as signals, the goggles wearing figures initiated their attacks on Shiika simultaneously.
There was no more strength left in her legs; she couldn’t even run away anymore.
But in the next instant, the pure white firefly flew in between Shiika and the goggles wearing figures as if it wanted to protect her.
The firefly’s body then emitted an overwhelming glow.
Above the shocked goggles wearing figures’ head ---
Up in the sky that was illuminated by the firefly’s aura, pure white snowflakes began to rain down slowly.
Not just one, but more began to appear one after another, its number gradually multiplying.
In the quiet surroundings, a calm voice suddenly rang.
Shiika involuntarily covered her mouth.
The voice that echoed, was none other than her voice. But strangely, Shiika didn’t say a word.
The snowflakes which appeared in the sky, fell towards to the ground.
“[Don’t come… near me…]”
The one, who said that line, was Shiika’s (Mushi) --- The pure white firefly.
In the next instant, (Mushi)’s dying screams rang loudly against Shiika’s eardrums.
Those (Mushi) that came in touch with the falling snow, their bodies were crushed apart as if they were gripped by an invisible hand, or exploded from within; there were even some that got cut into pieces. And not just (Mushi), the ground and buildings that the snow fell on began to collapse as if an earthquake had occurred.
The blizzard of destruction destroyed and swallowed everything in her sight ---
The snow seemed to be deliberately avoiding the humans. However, the figures that had their (Mushi) killed still showed painful expressions as they fell one after another.
In front of the dumbfounded Shiika, a unilateral massacre began to unfold.
Although there were some (Mushi) trying desperately to resist, once their body came in contact with even one snowflake, their bodies would immediately get flattened, crumbled, and crushed. Even those that tried to escape would share the same fate, and get mercilessly engulfed by the falling snows. Wiring poles and walls, which were dragged into this whirlpool of destruction, were turning into powder.
The corpse of (Mushi) that had fallen onto the debris began to slowly dissolve into the space, and disappeared.
At the same time, those goggles wearing figures all dropped to their knees and fell to their sides.
On seeing the goggles figures’ posture, Shiika could feel a cold chill running down her spine.
Those that had intended to attack Shiika from before, all of them were showing emotionless expressions. And those who had their goggles dropped, they were all half-opening their eyes, staring into the space with their lusterless eyes.
It was as if they were all dead.
Those Mushitsuki who had their (Mushi) killed, would have their soul deprived, losing every emotion and memory they had and became “Fallen” ---
Recalling the rumor, Shiika’s trembling legs began to step backward.
In Shiika’s eyes, those people who had lost their emotions and couldn’t even move or speak, were much more terrifying and frightening than (Mushi).
The white-colored firefly continued with Shiika’s voice.
“No --- I didn’t do it, I didn’t ---“
Shiika gradually turned to face her family.
The mutter that her mother whispered, instantly carved a deep wound on Shiika’s already broken heart.
Even her sister that always stood on her side, was now gazing at her with a fearful look.
Her steps became lighter.
Because of all the things that had happened, her mind’s comprehension ability was unable to keep up. It felt so painful as if she was about to pass out any second.
Mushitsuki --- The human host that was infested by the dream-devouring (Mushi).
As a result of becoming such an existence, not just others, but even her family had begun to be afraid of her.
Shiika dragged her shaking legs before turning her back facing her family. She had already lost the stamina to run.
“--- W-Wait, Shiika!”
From behind came her sister’s calling, but Shiika now was unable to hear it.
Shifting her blurring gaze to the sky, she could see more black long coat wearing figures descending from the sky holding onto their (Mushi)’s legs. However, the instant when those (Mushi) came in contact with the falling snow, they were torn and crumbled into balls like a paper toy until ultimately becoming flattened. Those figures, who were hiding their identities behind the goggles, dropped onto the ground, and stopped moving.
The white snowflakes continued to fall endlessly, completely destroying and engulfing everything in Shiika’s sight.
“--- I’m --- I’m a… monster…”
Shiika’s murmur, was completely erased by the overwhelming sound of destruction from her surroundings.
Thank you for reading~
Feel free to leave comments for any questions or feedback~
.. Heart-breaking... Why no one wants to help her.... T^T