Chapter Eight: Harness The Dark

     The sound of my windows hitting furiously against the house is what awoke me with a startle. I rushed over to them, struggling to bring them to a close but finally latching them. I wiped my hand across the glass, bringing away some of the fog that had quickly formed. A storm raged fiercely outside, showing no sign of letting up. Thunder boomed, and I whimpered. I hate these damn storms... I folded my arms and went to try and plan the outfit for today. My eyes found their way to my digital clock on my nightstand, which read 4:15 am. I groaned, being awake 2 hours before you're supposed to sucks major.

     A tear ran down my face as lightning struck insanely close, followed by more bellowing thunder. Hell, I'm surprised no one else has woken up because of this... I searched and searched through my closet for something water resistant, but failed. I instead, returned to my bed. Switching on the little lamps that hung above the head of my bed on the wall, I pulled out the books on Arachnophobia and the Kishin, hoping to find something about black blood.

"If I'm going to control the black blood, I might as well learn what it does..." I whispered, keeping in mind not to wake anyone up.

     I found a whole chapter on it in the book about the Kishin, which I began reading.

The Black Blood, as its name suggests, takes on the shape of normal blood cells, only pitch black in color. Since its primary function is to make whoever it infects into a Kishin, the Black Blood induces insanity in the person who is infected by it. The madness of the Black Blood has different effects, depending on the user. The main purpose of the madness is to erase all fear in the users, which prevents hesitation or weakness of will during battle. It is possible for a person to have his/her blood completely replaced by Black Blood. Likewise, Demon Weapons can be melted into the Black Blood, which in turn, turns them into a Dark Weapon. The madness of the Black Blood can be potent, but with enough strength of will, it can be controlled. However, using too much of the Black Blood's power beyond one's capabilities risks the person being devoured by the Black Blood and the insanity it produces.

     I took a deep gulp followed by a sharp inhale. This is what's in my body...? Thunder rumbled outside the manor, shaking the frames and the oil lamp on my desk in front of my mirror. I flipped the page, hesitant but eager to read more. 

If a person manages to control the Black Blood, he/she has full control of the abilities the unique substance offers. One of the Black Blood's properties is that it can hyper-densify to the user's will. When a user is cut and the Black Blood bleeds out of the wound, the user can will the Black Blood to harden and take on the shape of sharp objects, such as blades or needles. This is used as a counter-attack. It can also take on the form of a protective armour for the body. However, without the user's will, the Black Blood does not harden, meaning that this property is not an automatic function of the Black Blood. 

     I slammed the book shut, closing my eyes and running a hand through my tangled hair. Another glance at the clock, 5:00 am. Someone should at least be up now. I put both the books back in my bag, hiding them under my bed. I quietly opened my room door, slipping out into the hallway and closing the door just as effortlessly. The stairway was still dark, so I created another little orb of light to help guide me down.

     I stammered into the kitchen, which was still dark. I heard someone coming down the stairs, so I quickly distinguished the orb of light and stuffed myself into the walk in pantry. 

"Kid, you know we can't just up and accuse her of this. I mean, there are tons of explanations for why your heart has been having palpitations." I heard my mother say, switching on the kitchen light.

"No, this is where I'm afraid you're wrong, Akemi. My father would describe these kinds of pains to me when I was a child, after I accidentally connected just one Line of Sanzu. I know this is what the pain is. Trust me, love." I heard my father plant a kiss on my mother's forehead, which made me cringe a little.

     It was too dark in the pantry for me to see my lines, but I placed a hand on them, my face growing into a sad expression. I heard them leave, and I quietly snuck out of the pantry, focusing extra on not grabbing the attention of my parents. I crawled up the stairs, while my parents sat next to each other on the couch, watching the morning news. I made it up to my room, right as a crack of lightning hit and I screamed, falling to the floor by my bed.

     My father stormed in, kicking the door. He rushed over to me, scooping me up in his arms and sitting me on the bed. 

"It's alright, darling. No need to worry. It's just a storm. See? It can't harm you." My fathers reassuring voice caused me to sob softly into his pajama shirt.

"Kid! Is Mizuki alright?!" My mother cried from the door, breathing heavily with once again, a hand on her stomach.

"It's just the storm scared her. She was like this as a toddler, too..." My dad brushed the hair from my forehead, showing off my red from crying face.

     He laid me down in my bed, setting the covers over my shaky body and waving the lights off with a flick of his hand.

"You've still got 45 minutes to sleep, Mizuki. It's okay." 

*Time Skip*

"You've come far, Mizuki. I'm proud of you." A woman spoke to me, my body surrounded in floating droplets of my black blood, ready to be used at my command. "Arachne." I spat, wiping my mouth from more trickling blood. "Why so hostile, love? I've given you everything. Can't you just be a little grateful?" The black-gowned woman walked towards me. "How could you call me love?! You killed him! YOU KILLED M-" I was cut off by her claw-like nails around my throat, bringing me into the air. "You're a Gorgon now, Daughter of Death. Oh, and one last piece of advice... never bite the hand that feeds you." She threw me against a nearby wall, but I yelled out with every last bit of strength... "Bloody Needle!" Arachne just laughed maniacally as the drops of black blood penetrated her perfect body. "You finally said it." She muttered, as my vision went black.

     I awoke with a sharp breath, noticing that the storm had calmed down into a steady rain storm. Rolling out of bed (literally), I carried myself over to the closet, dressing for the cold rather than torrential downpour. I picked out a long sleeve fitted violet shirt, which contrasted my bright white hair. For the pants, just a black poofy skirt with leggings and converse for my shoes. I changed, leaving my hair to lay down and making my way to the kitchen.

     I noticed everyone was in the downstairs area except for my mom. I cleared my throat, attempting to make myself known.

"Anybody know where mom is?" I asked out loud to no one in particular.

"Momma stayed in bed today! She's sick!" Patty called from the living room, not breaking eye contact from whatever children's network she was watching.

"Your mother is ill, Mizuki. But don't worry, it'll pass soon." My father looked up from behind the kitchen counter, reassuring me.

"Here you are, m'lady. Your cloak." Asmund draped my navy cloak accented with a deaths skull face cover over my shoulders.

     I walked out onto the porch, excess rain water dripping from the gutters. I threw the hood of my cloak on my head, fastening the face mask and walking out into the depressing setting to face the day. The normally happy brick streets were puddled up with rainwater, and small tree branches had blown off from the storm this morning. The shop's all had signs hung by frail rope that said they'd be opening later. Damn shame... I wanted to go by the cafe before school. 

     I rode Ryu to the top of the Academy steps, dismissing my board once I was safe and dry inside the school. Students hurried in, shaking their wet hair and leaving umbrellas inside bags. I walked dauntingly down the hallways, keeping my face covered by the veil of my hood. Walking into Class Crescent Moon, I noticed everyone was upbeat and cheery, despite outside's weather. I hung my cloak up on the coat rack at the front of the class and turned to look at everyone.

"Take your seat already, Mizuki. It's not like you're the best view at the moment." A girl spat from her seat in the middle of the classroom.

     I frowned a little, but nonetheless obeyed the girl and sat at my seat in the top right corner of the classroom, one of only 2 seats to fit in that small corner. The other was Apsel's. Speaking of which... where is he? It's not unlike him to skip school, or even be late. I pulled out a notebook and pencil case which I kept hidden under the boards of my table. I picked up a pencil and began doodling on the blank page.

     About 15 minutes into my lonely drawing, I heard squeaky wheels make their way into the room. Which meant, Stein had arrived. I pushed my notebook and pencil aside, ready for what inevitable horrors the stitched professor had for us today. He cleared his throat, standing up from his wheelie-chair and walking behind his desk.

"Today, class, I have an extracurricular activity planned in place of the dissection that was previously scheduled to take place." His voice was sad at that part, while sighs of relief waved through the room.

"Instead, though, we will be practicing 1 vs. 1 battles. I will throw each of your names that are in my roster, into this here jar. Whichever two I draw out, will battle in the practice gym." My body tensed up as he explained what we were to do.

     I had no meister with me at the moment, so fighting as a sword against this wide variety would be the biggest challenge ever. Sure, I knew how to fight on my own. Doesn't mean it's simple or that I prefer it. I raised my hand to get Stein's attention.

"Yes, Mizuki, what is it?" The professor's voice was back to monotonous.

"H-How am I supposed to compete fairly against my opponent? My meister isn't present." I lowered my hand, my face turning red at all the eyeballs pinned on me.

"This isn't supposed to be fair." He simply stated, but I looked closer as his lips mouthed 'for them'.

     I wondered what he meant by that... I dismissed the thoughts, and made my way to the practice gym with the others.

     Stein appeared in the gym shortly after the class did, with a clipboard and pen behind one of his ears. Soon, the battles began. I must have sat through 7 different battles, when my blood ran cold at the next words said aloud.

"Mizuki versus Crossli and her weapon Blake." Stein motioned for both teams to stand on either side of the court, and I did with shaky legs.

"Meisters, take your stance." He turned the screw in his head a few times. I got my arm into the claymore blade, and readied myself best I could.

"Fight." The single click from his screw echoed through the gym as Crossli raced towards me with her weapon Blake, who was a sledgehammer.

     I leaped in the air, kicking myself off the back wall. Blake rammed through the wall, jamming himself. I spun rapidly towards Crossli, my blade piercing through her left bicep. I can't explain what was happening, but I felt as if my blood was gushing through my body even harder. Colder, faster, without seams to break though. Getting distracted caused me to get a sledgehammer to my gut, sending me upwards into the ceiling. 

     Stein smiled at me, although I didn't know why. I used some suture magick to keep me to the ceiling, as I watched my black blood drip from my mouth and downwards onto the floor. Black blood... My heart began racing. Black blood. My eyes widened, focusing on the small droplets. I have black blood! I screamed as loud as I can, remembering what that whisper had said to me. "Learn to control the blood, and it will do you nothing but good." 

"Bloody Needle!" I wailed, my voice cracking at the ear-shattering volume of my command.

     The blood instantly became sharp splinter like objects, diving towards Crossli at an alarming rate. I undid my sutures, aiming my blade for her throat. The last thing I remember was the petrified look on the young girl's face, as she threw her weapon out of the way before I made my impact.



The End

0 comments about this story Feed