Chapter Thirty-Eight: Ticket Inside:

-October 23rd, 2011-

The first task came at three in the morning. Anna wouldn’t get the text until seven in the morning. She reached for her phone next o the futon. A confused look came over her face.

“Huh?” she asked. The sender was blocked. Alright, Anna saw where this was heading. She shook Tsuzuki on the shoulder.

“Wake up,” she whispered. The shinigami lifted his head.

“Hm?” he asked. “What is it?” Anna shoved her phone in his face.

“It’s already started,” she said. Tsuzuki backed up and blinked away sleep.

“Huh?” he asked. “What are you talking about?”

“Here,” his wife said. Anna opened the text.

Task #1

Burn the leaves

Light the thread

Burn two hairs of a virgin

Pray and chant this sutra three times: Cho Shin Ka Sho

See what happens next.

The couple looked at each other. Anna frowned at the screen.

“She can’t be serious,” she said. Tsuzuki stared at the message.

“What does that even mean?” he asked. “It doesn’t make sense. Is this a riddle or something?” Anna shook her head.

“I won’t do it,” she said. “No. No way.” Tsuzuki turned to her.

“What do you want to do?” he asked. Anna shook her head again. Tsuzuki’s phone suddenly rang.

“Excuse me,” Tsuzuki said. He picked up his phone.

“Hello?” he asked.

“We’ve got another disappearance,” Hisoka said on the other line.

“What?” Tsuzuki asked.

“It happened last night,” the younger shinigami said.

“I will be right there,” Tsuzuki said. He hung up the phone.

“Who was that?” Anna asked. Her husband turned to her, frowning.

“We’ve got another one,” he said. “It happened last night.” Tsuzuki looked grim.

“Oh,” Anna said as the color drained from her face.

“Yeah,” her husband said.



Hisoka and Watari waited in Watari’s lab. They looked up to see Tsuzuki in the doorway.

“Red Garden again?” he asked.

“Yes,” Hisoka said.

“That’s eleven, right?” Tsuzuki asked.

“Yes,” Watari said.

“Please tell me some good news,” the oldest shinigami said. Watari and Hisoka looked at each other.

“We might have something,” Watari said.

“What?” Tsuzuki asked.

“Come look,” the blond scientist said. The older shinigami walked over the computer. Watari moved aside.

“What is this?” Tsuzuki asked. He scrolled down the list of names.

“List of potential victims,” Hisoka said. “We think there are more of them before those eleven.”

“Even before it was reported?” Tsuzuki asked.

“Yes,” Watari said. The older shinigami kept scrolling down. His jaw dropped.

“How many years had this been going on?” he asked.

“Since the fifties, give or take,” Hisoka said. Tsuzuki turned to them. No one could to describe the gravity of the situation.

There would be more coming.


Anna turned her phone in her hand. She wasn’t going to take the bait. She already deleted the text. But, that wasn’t end of it. What would it take? Who would die next? Anna rubbed her forehead.

“Damn it,” she muttered. Her phone buzzed again. Anna frowned. She already saw where this was heading.