Chapter 0:



“Can you throw out the trash, dear?” Bookmark here

My mom, who I loved very much, asked. I was sitting in my room playing the latest copy of My Hero Adventure, an RPG game that I was very good at. It had been two hours since I started playing the game, and the light from the screen had started to strain my eyes, so I took the opportunity to throw the trash, like my mom had asked.Bookmark here

“Got it mom!” Bookmark here

I grabbed the nearest pairs of slippers and slid them on my feet. The old long sleeve shirt I wore would be able to match the chilly weather at night, and my pants would also do the same. I rushed down the stairs and grabbed the unusually heavy bag of garbage, leaving and closing the door to my home behind me.Bookmark here

The path to the nearest dumpster was pretty far, and the cold weather was not going to help get through this. I took a breath, slumped the garbage bag onto my shoulder, and began to walk for what seemed like hours.Bookmark here

It was actually unusually cold. I could see my own breath as I continued walking down the path. My teeth started shivering, and I could feel my body shake. There was a gust of wind that blew past me, and for a second I felt shivers reaching down my entire spine.Bookmark here

I couldn’t wait any longer. I started to walk hastily down the path, and then after a while I started to jog, and then afterwards I began to run. The cold ran off my body, and I could feel my every piece of skin form goosebumps. But at last, after what felt like eons, I managed to make it to the dumpster.Bookmark here

I quickly tossed the large bag in the dumpster, sighing in relief that I was able to go back home. I turned around to head back, but instead I stopped dead in my path.Bookmark here

It was a low growl, barely audible, but I swear I could hear it. The only sounds that I heard walking down the path were that of crickets, the small gusts of wind, and the sounds of the cars that sometimes dashed by in the distance. Except this sound, for whatever reason, was very, very different. It was like a large giant’s stomach had been growling, after not eating for centuries, looking for the smallest piece of food to quench his hunger.Bookmark here

My eyes started to dash around my surroundings. Everywhere I looked there was no hint that something had been there, but my instincts told me that something was there. I tried to move my body to run, but it was like my brain stopped functioning, ceasing every part of my body in the process. I tried to open my mouth, but all that escaped was nothing.Bookmark here

There, I saw it.Bookmark here

It wasn’t really anything, more like a shadow. I could see it form a small distance away from me, it’s mass slowly builds its body, creating the shape of an average sized man. When it finally stopped forming itself, It didn’t look like it because I couldn’t tell since it had no face, but it felt like it had turned its head towards me. I could hear the low growl that I heard previously, and in an instant the shadow began to walk towards me. Bookmark here

I couldn’t move at all. Not because I was scared, or I was terrified, no, instead it was like I was trapped, like a large hand just grabbed my body, and would not let me go. The only thing I could do was stare in fear as the shadow grew closer and closer, the low grumble grew louder and louder. I bit my lip and clenched my eyes, fearing the worst that was to come.Bookmark here

“Hmmpf!” Bookmark here

What the hell was that? I reopened my eyes and found the shadow standing right in front of me. It was also confused by the alien sound that emerged, and looked past me and towards the closed dumpster.Bookmark here

In an instant, the dumpster’s lid flew open, and the appearance of a girl emerged from the trash pile. She wore a black garment coat with long draping sleeves that fell to her sides, lined stripes covered the neck area of the garment, which created a circle. She wore black pants with black boots that reached her shins, her grey hair sat on the middle of her back, which almost looked as if it was gleaming in the moonlight. Her eyes were that of a pale purple, her lashes were long and enticing to look at. Bookmark here

“Please step away, Ogata.” Bookmark here

How did she know my name? I didn’t dwell on that fact for long, as I immediately forced myself away from where she had been facing. She now faced directly towards the shadow, which began to shriek, and started to walk towards the girl. Bookmark here

“You do not belong here!” Bookmark here

The girl bent downwards slightly, before taking a single step. It was nowhere to be seen on her body, but she had pulled out what seemed to be a sword gleaming with an aura. It’s blade was not long enough to reach the shadow, but for whatever reason it was if a large slash had been created that evolved from the sword, and was enough to reach the shadow, which brought it to a halt. It shrieked in agony, as the shadow began to wither away. The low growl could be heard one last time, before finally there was nothing left to hear.Bookmark here

The girl’s sword vanished from my sight, and I soon saw the girl facing my direction. She began to walk towards me, and I felt my breath begin to quicken. Bookmark here

“I’m very sorry you witnessed that creature.”Bookmark here

The girl bent over and raised her arm towards me. Her expression was stolid, like this was just a simple errand that she had to get done to finish her day. I hesitantly reached for her hand, and was surprised to see how easily she lifted me up from the ground. I tried to compose myself, before I finally saw myself facing the girl.Bookmark here

“Er..”Bookmark here

“What is it?”Bookmark here

There were a million questions I wanted to ask the girl who stood right in front of me. Where did she come from? Why is her hair so out of this world? Why is she wearing those clothes? Why did she jump out of a dumpster? There were so many questions that came to my mind, but the first one that darted from my mouth was what I had recalled from earlier.Bookmark here

“How did you know my name?” Bookmark here

It seems that the question I had asked the girl was probably something that I needed to know, because of how she reacted. Her eyes almost lit up, her cheeks started to redden. She took a step back like I had said something so preposterous that she couldn’t believe what she heard, she turned around and shoved her back towards my face.Bookmark here

“I don’t remember ever saying your name.”Bookmark here

“Yeah, you did. You said my name, Ogata.”Bookmark here

That seemed to nail her. She made a low grunt sound, like she had been stabbed with an arrow. She stood back up, and then turned around so her face was staring into mine. Her expression was almost concerning, her eyebrows slanted and her eyes creased.Bookmark here

“Yes, your name is Ogata, of course I know that.”Bookmark here

“Why do you know it then?”Bookmark here

“Because I’ve been following you, that's why.”Bookmark here

What the hell? That’s so creepy. My eyebrows rose up when I heard that, and I ended up forming an absolutely disgusted face. Why in the world would this girl be following me?Bookmark here

“You look like that sounds weird.”Bookmark here

“Of course it’s weird! Why the hell are you following me!?”Bookmark here

“Because I needed to know something, and now I have confirmed it.”Bookmark here

“Eh? What?”Bookmark here

“You were able to see that thing, weren’t you?”Bookmark here

If she was talking about the shadow that was definitely about to kill me, then she was right on the mark. It was so out of this world that I believed that I would have died of shock from the get-go. Bookmark here

“The shadow?”Bookmark here

“I see…”Bookmark here

The girl walked ahead of me, and stared at the ground with her hand on her chin. The gusts of wind began to develop around her, and the large cloak she wore began to flap in the wind.Bookmark here

“I now know that you, Ogata, are able to see the mysterious entities known as Nightmares. As such, you are to come with me to a different world than you know of right now.”Bookmark here

“Uhh?”Bookmark here

“I will take you to a realm known as Avalon, paradise of civilization, land of the strong-willed.”Bookmark here

The girl spoke in an almost upbringing tone, like a speech before a big game. But what she said was almost nonsense to me. Avalon? Like from the legend of Arthur? I don’t think a place like that exists, and she says something about a different realm than I know of. She is either off the walls, or she was told a lie that she believes is the truth.Bookmark here

“I don’t really think that place exists, you know… It’s a legend that isn’t real.”Bookmark here

“Is that what you truly believe?”Bookmark here

“I’m pretty sure, yeah.”Bookmark here

“Then I'll make you believe.”Bookmark here

In an instant she was right up against my face for a second time. There was a second or two that passed by while she stood in front of me, before I felt the warm sensation of something pressing against my stomach. I looked down, and I stared in horror as the sword she had been carrying now cut right through my body. My eyes shook, and then a moment later I began to cough up blood. It was a feeling I had never felt before. I’ve cut my finger with a knife by accident, and of course it stung and felt like it was burning, but this was on a whole new level. It was warm, but it felt like nothing had gone through me at all. Is this what being stabbed feels like? Bookmark here

“What the hell…?”Bookmark here

“In a moment, you’ll die. But soon after you will be brought to Avalon, rest assure you will not be led somewhere else, I have made sure of it.”Bookmark here

The words she spoke were a stir as I tried to comprehend, but the dizzy feeling I began to experience took over, as it felt like the world began to fall on me. I looked up at the night sky one more time, before my heavy eyes finally weighed too much for me to bear, and all I saw was black.Bookmark here

Golden Boy


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