Chapter Twenty-Seven: Freed Fox:

“You’re scared of me, aren’t you?” Anna asked. Haruka turned her head.

“What did you say?” she asked. Her granddaughter eyed her.

“Why else would you let me live?” she asked.

“I can’t kill you, remember?” Haruka asked.

“But why?” Anna asked. “You could kill me now. Airi isn’t here and I am unarmed. You could get this over with.”

“That would defeat the purpose,” her grandma said.

“Would it really?” the younger woman asked. She moved her pinky finger again. Okay, good. Keep it up. Haruka snorted.

“Yes,” she said. “And who the hell is Airi?” Anna chuckled to herself.

“Oh, that’s right,” she said. “You don’t know. Of course you wouldn’t.” Anna smiled.

“Well, Airi is the Mother,” she said. Haruka wrinkled her nose.

“Why do you call that?” she asked. Anna gave a mental shrug.

“Asato came up with it,” she said. “He thinks it’s cute. I think it is too. It’s starting to grow on her.” The old woman snorted.

“What a ridiculous name,” she said.

“Not your choice to make,” Anna said. Her grandma frowned.

“Whatever,” she said. “The Mother won’t let me kill you anyway.”

“Why is that?”

“You are her vessel. No real harm will come to you.”

“Heh.” Anna couldn’t help but smile.

“So I’m that powerful, huh? Wow. You really are scared of me.” She tried to move her ring finger. Haruka glared at her.

“I am not,” she growled.

“If you say so,” Anna said. The old lady glared at her. Her granddaughter wiggled her ring finger. Keep moving. She took another breath. A new thought crossed her mind.

“This looks desperate,” Anna said. The old lady glared at her.

“What do your even know?” she asked. Now for Anna’s middle finger. Her eyes stayed on Grandma. Haruka gritted her teeth.

“What do you know?” she asked. Her granddaughter smirked.

“I didn’t say much,” she said. “I just asked a simple question.” The old woman’s nostrils flared.

“I have heard enough from you!” she snapped. “You know something? I liked you better when you were quiet.” Haruka drew her finger from right to left. Anna’s mouth was forced closed. The old lady began to smile.

“Much better,” she said. This time, Anna didn’t look so pissed off. Her middle finger could move. Two more to go. Keep moving.


It all looked the same. Tsuzuki could see the fog forming again. He wasn’t being followed, for now. Ne reception though. The battery was slowly dying. Tsuzuki held his breath. Which way to go now? Left or right? The shinigami lifted his hand.

“That way!” he shouted. Tsuzuki ran off to the right. He didn’t notice the pair of eyes tailing him.


All but Anna’s thumb could move. Haruka hadn’t noticed yet. How long before that changed? Haruka paced around this living room. She seemed to be mumbling to herself. Anna’s eyes rolled to the ceiling.

Wait a second… Is that a crack? The younger woman narrowed her eyes. On the surface, the crack looked so small. This was all Anna needed to know about her situation. But how was she going to get of here? Anna’s eyes shifted back and forth. No door in sight. This room looked so small too. Hm… Was it always this tiny? Haruka turned and looked at her hostage. Anna stayed still. Her thumb came free. She had her right hand now. She had to get her left hand now.

It was then Anna saw it. One single window on the other side of the room. She narrowed her eyes. How big was that window? Was it locked? Maybe she could break the glass. Her left thumb started to move. Haruka glared at her.

“Stop that!” she barked. Anna gave her a confused look. The old lady saw red.

“You bitch!” she snapped. “Stop laughing at me! All of you! I will not lose! Never! Never!” Her granddaughter started to get worried. Is she… okay?

Anna noticed that her mouth wasn’t fixed shut anymore.

“No one is laughing at you!” she said out loud. Haruka whirled around. Her jaw dropped. Anna stood by the window.

“You!” Haruka snapped. Her granddaughter smirked. The window was already wide open.

“And you are wrong,” Anna said. “You are going to lose. We will see to it!” Then she turned and jumped out of the window. Haruka ran over in time to see her granddaughter hit the ground. Anna lay on the ground surrounded by glass. Then she got up and walked away into the darkness unharmed.