Chapter 7:

Chapter 7


Raindrops hit my face as I awoke from consciousness.

I felt something on my chest. I looked down and it was a crow.

“I’m not dead yet,” I grumbled. “Get off of me.”

The crow flapped its wings and flew away from my face. I rubbed my eyes and sat up.

I looked at the sky. It was night time. I didn't know how long I had been out. I got up and took a quick glance at my surroundings. I was still right outside the dojo which was a good thing. On top of that my wounds seemed to heal but they ache a little.

“Fuckin’ hell.” I cursed, walking towards the dojo.

I opened the door and stepped inside. It was dark and quiet. I looked around and my eyes adjusted to the darkness. I picked up the tattered cloth from the ground and walked into my room. In there was the mat I slept on.

Laying the cloth on the mat, I let myself fall on it. All I wanted to do is go to sleep and forget about what happened earlier. Unfortunately, I can’t.

All I kept thinking about was the fight between that…thing and me earlier. Who would’ve known that that fairy can turn into a hideous demon like that.

It was bigger than me, stronger than me. I couldn’t even land a hit on her. Not to mention her monstrous strength. She would have broken my back when she held me over her head.

I should've ran when I had the chance. I should've fought harder. I should've…

I wiped the sweat from my forehead. I felt like shit. How the hell did I survive all that exactly? I don’t know but I’m alive.

I looked up at the ceiling as I listened to the sound of the rain as more thoughts ran through my mind.

What the hell did she mean when she said, “It was time to get real?” I know she means to cause chaos and mayhem but it felt like she meant something else.

As I laid on the cloth, more images of the fight flooded my mind. In a flash I saw her…smile. Her demonic face contorted in glee as she laughed at me.

I felt my hands clenched into fists. I was going to kill her. I was going to tear her limbs apart. I was going to break her skull with my bare hands.

That’s right. Get angry. A tempting voice spoke out. You should kill her. That's what you should do.

I shook my head violently.

You need to kill her. The voice was getting louder. It was clearer. I could hear what it was saying.

I looked around the dark room to figure out where the voice was coming from.

There was nothing there. The dojo was dark as usual.

I turned back and the voice repeated itself. Kill her.

I looked down at my clenched fists. My knuckles were white. I slowly unclenched them.

I didn't even know why I was thinking that way. I mean, I'm pissed as hell and I want to kill something or someone but is that really a good way to get over what happened?

Of course it is! The voice interjected. She humiliated you. Broke you. It’s only fair to get revenge and regain your pride!

I let out a hollow laugh. “Pride? The only thing that was broken in that fight were my ribs.”

You won’t be laughing when she kills you!

I closed my eyes. It was hard to listen to the voice but I tried harder. It was getting louder and clearer and more persistent. It seemed to be mocking me.

It's time to get revenge. She deserves it.

I shook my head again. No, I won't listen to this.

I turned away from the room. I felt dizzy. I stumbled and fell on the floor. The voice continued to play its song in my head. I kept shaking my head. I didn't want to hear it.

I tossed and turned on the mat hoping that sleep would take over me but it didn’t.

Thankfully, the voice had one more thing to say. Do what needs to be done, demon!

“Leave me alone.” I growled.

The voice didn't reply. I heard it stop.

I let out a sigh of relief and fell on the mat. Even after dealing with the voice, I still couldn’t fall asleep. Guess it wasn’t an option in the first place.

Heh, what the hell am I getting myself into here? I’m hearing voices now? I pulled the covers over my head. This is getting out of hand. Was that the inner evil that Lilith mentioned or am I going crazy. It couldn’t be both, right? Right?

What in the hell is going on with me? All I wanted to do was get revenge and now I’m getting dragged into stuff I never wanted to be a part of.

Wait, who am I trying to get revenge on anyway? A good question.

Is this what my life is now? Nothing but twists and turns that always affect me in a bad way?

I'm not sure if I can take any more of this. I wish I could just go back to the life I had before but I know that's impossible. I should’ve stayed dead.

My internal struggle raged on as I stared blankly at the ceiling. The air around me was getting colder by the second and my heart pounded loudly in my chest. I still had a few hours before dawn and sleep refused to take me.

Another sleepless night under a familiar ceiling. I mused, closing my eyes

I dug through the trash can looking for something to eat. All the food in the dojo was either dried out or rotten. Couldn’t find any fruit trees either so I had no choice but to come to the alleyways yet again.

I always keep coming back here for a cause. It was my first “home” before I found my old dojo so maybe I’m a little homesick? Or maybe it’s protection. The only question to that is…who am I protecting?

Like I said before, I don’t see myself as a hero, as a protector. I killed people in the past. A hero wouldn’t do that. I'm just a "fool" who made a deal with the devil in the first place. I'm not worthy of being a hero. I'm not worthy of anything.

After a long struggle with my hunger, I found a can of sardines and crackers. I ripped it open and chowed down. I don't think I've ever been this hungry. Ever.

I finished the can and started looking through the garbage for more food. I've lost my sense of direction so I decided to follow the smell of the garbage to see if I could find anything else.

When it comes to hunger I rarely need to meet it. Everyone else can go at least 3 days without eating or drinking. For me, weeks can go by and I still won’t be hungry. Eventually I would have to go on the prowl for something though. Fruit, rotten meat, moldy bread, or anything edible is fine. Though, today I’m feeling a little more hungry than usual, particularly for meat.

My nose sent me towards another trash can. I opened the lid and dug through the crumpled up bills, discarded pieces of paper, empty wrappers and other miscellaneous things. I managed to find a huge turkey leg that was still in the package.

“Perfect.” I said, grabbing the packaged food.

I ripped it open and removed my bandages so I could eat properly. As I chowed down on the turkey leg I couldn’t help but relish how good it was compared to those rotten sardines and stale crackers I had earlier.

Though I couldn’t help but feel a pair of eyes on me. I tried to ignore it but it became more of a task when more pairs of eyes were gazing at me.

“Oh, it’s you,” A familiar voice called out. From the corner of my eye I saw that girl from yesterday. I believe her name was Hae. “So you came ba—”

Hae froze when she saw my face. Can’t blame her. I’ll react the same way if I saw someone whose face is nearly a skeleton eating savagely. I could see and smell the fear off of her, it was pretty obvious. And annoying.

“What do you want?” I asked her. She was too shocked to respond so I repeated myself, getting a little irritated.

“What do you want?!”

“Oh! Well, uh.” Hae looked away from me. I rolled my eyes and continued to eat.

There was a long pause before Hae spoke again.

“Uh, I see you’re back.”


“You changed your mind?”

“No, I came back to find something to eat,” I swallowed my last bite, wiped my mouth, and put on my bandages. “That’s why I’m here.”

“Oh come on!” Hae cried. “You haven’t thought about it at all?!”

“No. Like I said, I’m not your protector,” I threw the trash to the side and dusted off my hands. “If you want to protect these alleyways from Kija then that’s your job.”

Hae looked at me with a hurt expression on her face. She stepped forward and stopped me from walking away.

“You're just gonna leave?”

“What do you think?” I turned my back on her. “I'm not your guardian or anything. I'm not your keeper. I can't be responsible for you. I have my own shit to deal with.”

Instead of speaking up like she always does, Hae hung her head as I walked away.

Then, a short homeless man rolled out of the corner, making me stop for a quick second.

“You can’t leave yet.”

I turned around.

“Why not?”

More homeless people emerged from the shadows of the alleyways.

I balled up my fists and my wraps came to life while on high alert. I don’t have a problem roughing up a few hobos. It will be a nice warm up after all.

“Because, the Rat King summoned you.” They all pointed at me.

“The Rat King?” I questioned. “And if I say no?” I’m already picking off ways to get myself out of this situation.

“He will be very displeased.” Another hobo spoke up.

“Then let him. I want no part of it.” I stepped forward. The hobo did the same thing.

Looks like someone wants to die first. The voice cackled in the back of my mind.

No, no killing.

Hae stepped in between us.

“Come on. There’s no need to start a fight,” She turned towards me. “Please ma’am, the Rat King is very interested in you.”

I looked at Hae, balancing my decisions. I can either fight them all—might end in a bloodbath—or, meet the Rat King and get the hell out of here.

Hae must have seen the struggle going on inside my head. She placed a finger on my chest and looked me in the eye.


I sighed.

“Okay, okay, fine. I’ll go.”

All of their dirty faces lit up, especially Hae’s.

“This way ma’am.”

The group of homeless people led me deep into the alleyways. After walking for a few minutes, we ended up at a huge tent with a throne chair right beside it.

Hae walked over and held open the tent door.

“She’s here your highness.”

Highness? I thought the Rat King was just a title.

“Good. Thank you Hae.” The voice from the tent replied.

Not long after, a lone man came out from the tent. He stood upright, making me get a good look at his stature.

He wore a tattered red trench coat, a stained yellow shirt underneath, rugged red sweatpants, and flip-flops. Topped with a rusted crown. It was hard to tell what his face looked like since it’s concealed behind a scratched up hockey mask.

Is this how a king is supposed to dress? How depressing.

“Ah, hello there lone hero,” Rat King greeted. “May I ask for your name?”

“Minji,” I responded dryly. “I take it that you’re the Rat King?”

“Of course, child! Welcome to my humble abode!”

I looked around at the filthy conditions we were in. I stepped forward and immediately recoiled at the smell. It was overpowering and disgusting.

So much for a humble abode. I thought.

This guy is no king. He's a filthy beggar that probably sleeps in alleys.

“Make yourself comfortable!” The Rat King pointed at a lawn chair by me.

"That's just a chair."

"Oh, it's not just a chair. It's a luxury item!" He boasted.

I rolled my eyes and sat in the “luxury item” as Rat King sat down on his throne.

“Now, let’s get to business,” He cleared his throat. “The reason why I summoned you here was—”

“Was because of the whole Kija situation I know.” I interjected, knowing where the conversation was going.

“Well, yes. Hae here tells me that you’ve been rejecting my requests.”

My eyes quickly darted at Hae and back at him.

“Yeah that’s true. Why? You’re gonna guilt trip me with a sob story?”

The Rat King’s face darkened.

“Kings don’t guilt trip, child. That’s for figureheads. All we ever asked was for your assistance against that man. Nothing more.”

“You don’t say?” I let out a fake chuckle.

You dare call yourself a king and hide behind your people. A real king doesn’t do that. If anything, they’ll try to do things to avert their people from harm.

“Correct child. Kija…”

From that point on, I tuned him out. There’s no point in hearing the same speech twice so why even bother listening? It’s like beating a dead horse over and over again. I knew coming here was a mistake. I’m getting roped into something that I don’t care for.

The only thing that caught my attention in that snooze speech was…

“...Minji, the 4 man slayer.”

4 men? Those 4 are nothing but measly numbers added to the mountain of corpses I stand on. I’ve killed way more men in my past life.

“So, do you accept my request?”


Rat King stared at me with disappointment.


“Why should I? I can’t protect you. You’re a king right? You shouldn’t be cowering behind me.”

I stood up and turned my back on him. I couldn't take their pleading, pathetic voices anymore. I was tempted to say yes to shut them up.

“I see,” The King hung his head. “Well, I hope you change your mind her—”

“Stop calling me that! I’m not a hero!” I snapped.

Everyone looked at me in complete shock like I grew silver wings.

“You dare raise your voice at your King?!” A homeless man shouted.“

He’s not my king!” I shot back. “You know what? I’m outta here!”

I stormed out of the alleyways, not looking back. This is what happens when you help needy people. They’re like cockroaches. If you feed them, they’ll never leave.

Crazy Kid