Chapter Twenty-One: Frustration:

Anna wanted to scream. Tsuzuki held her from behind.

“She keeps getting worse,” she complained. Anna turned her head.

“I don’t want her to die,” she said.

“I know,” Tsuzuki said. It felt like broken glass in his mouth. The crows were waiting outside. Who would he here to take their beloved daughter?


He couldn’t let them take her. Tsuzuki kissed Anna atop her head.

“Don’t cry, my love,” he whispered. “We will save her.” That wasn’t so much for her. It sounded like he was telling himself.

The other shinigami understood how he felt.

“We are trying all we can,” Tatsumi told him hours earlier. “But you mean have to prepare for--”

“Don’t say!” Tsuzuki said. “Don’t say it!” Tears ran down his cheeks. Tatsumi pulled him into his arms.

“Shhh. Shhh,” he whispered. The older shinigami wept in his arms.


Tsuzuki would sleep by his daughter’s futon. The girl barely got up anymore. Her fever got worse. The inn didn’t know what to do. Whispers started to float around with the staff. The two women hurry away.

Meanwhile, Tsuzuki wouldn’t leave his daughter. He held her hand.

“We won’t let you die,” the shinigami whispered. “Stay with us, baby. Stay with us.” He drew his eyes closed and went to sleep.


Meanwhile, Watari’s team came across some sort of a breakthrough.

“Ah!” he shouted. Everyone looked up.

“What is it?” Kyosuke asked.

“Take a look at this,” the blonde scientist said. Everyone took a look.

“What is that?” April asked.

“Look,” Watari said. He pointed down the screen. Little pink sparkles floated around. They disappeared in small black circles. Said circles blew up into nothing.

“What just happened?” Kyosuke asked. His boss had a grim look on his face.

“It’s a curse,” Watari said. “Just as I feared.” Airi rose to her feet.

Airi… san?” Watari asked. The door closed behind her. The trio looked each other, confused.


Anna and Tsuzuki lay near Kirika-chan’s futon. They looked when they heard the door slide open. Airi stood in my doorway.

“It’s a curse!” she said. “Kirika-chan has been cursed.”