Chapter Ten: Reeling:

Yasuo felt pins and needles go up and down his arms.

“W-W-What is this?” he asked. The black setting broke into cubes. He heard static in his ears. The old man took in heavy breaths.

“Aki? Aki? Aki?” he asked. The glitches in the background made his eyes hurt.

“Where are you?” he asked. “Speak to me! Aki! Aki! Aki!” Yasuo froze when he heard laughter.

“What did you do?” he asked. Tsuzuki’s face appeared in the sky.

“Oh,” the shinigami said, nonchalantly. “Just levelled the playing field.” Yasuo gritted his teeth.

“You!” he shouted. The darkness surrounding them contorted into odd shapes. The clawing noises began. Yasuo grabbed his head.

“Gah!” he cried. Laughing filled his mind. Yasuo took a step forward. His breathing grew labored.

“Aki! Aki!” he shouted. Then came the scratching. The old man sank to his knees. A shadow loomed over his head. Yasuo froze and looked up. Tsuzuki stood over him twenty feet tall.

“No!” Yasuo shouted. “You will not beat me! I won’t let you! You will not win!”

“Give up already,” Tsuzuki said. “Dragging this out will make it worse.”

“Never!” the tsukai shouted. “You will not defeat me! You cannot win!” Tsuzuki sighed as he shrugged.

“You sure about that?” he asked. “I’m sorry to hear that. You could stop this, you know?”

“Never!” Yasuo’s face looked so red.

Tsuzuki rubbed his forehead. “Fine. I gave you a chance. Don’t say you weren’t warned. Your funeral.” The shinigami vanished. Yasuo gritted his teeth and screamed. The black walls shuddered as his pain grew worse.

Meanwhile, Tsuzuki began a new search. Yasuo smirked to himself and started chanting under his breath.