In the darkness, the white-blue shining tip of the blade slashed through the monster, burning away its outer shell.
The monster moaned, but only for an instant. It swung its serrated, scythe-shaped claw towards us at full speed!
I quickly dodged the attack. The claw slashed through the air, crushing the asphalt and creating a huge hole in the ground.
I am tired... but I make sure not to show it. I keep my distance from the monster and my eyes focused on the prey. Inside my hand is a metallic cylinder-shaped handle, and coming out of it is a shining blade, creating rays of blue and white light.
I point my ‘Laser Blade’ at the monster who is taking its time pulling its claw out of the crushed asphalt. Its head resembles an upside-down triangle, with multiple eyes on each side of its face. It glared at me. The wound I gave it must have made it angrier, as it was gritting its jaws so hard that I could hear it clearly. The monster turned its disgusting body to face me, its 4 legs coming out of its torso allowing it to stand up.
Illuminated by the lights of the neon signs, this monster, if you describe it as a normal insect, is closest to a praying mantis. Although, calling it a ‘praying mantis’ when it’s over 3 meters tall is a bit of a stretch.
“A small praying mantis is scary enough, but this isn’t fair!”
I remember watching the scene of a praying mantis feast when I was a kid. Just like how the grasshopper got devoured, will I have my body ripped apart piece by piece by this monster? You are kidding me! This has got to be a joke!
Suddenly the monster lunged forward! The gigantic figure covered the distance within seconds. It was fast! Even if I back away, it will still catch up to me. All I can do is stay and fight... Can I do it?!
The monster jumped with no wasteful movements and lashed out at me with its deadly claws! I managed to avoid a direct hit, but there was a burning pain in my left shoulder. The serrated, scythe-like claws must have ripped into my flesh. No matter! Without hesitation, I kicked off the ground and launched myself straight at the monster. Gripping my Laser Blade tightly…
I stabbed the monster in it's torso, landing a deadly blow!
The monster let out an ear-splitting screech. I thrust the shining blade deeper into its chest cavity. The dying noises were just as bad as the smell that came from its burning insides.
“a…Haa… haa… haa…”
It seems this shall be my victory. Now to make this screeching to stop. I pushed the blade in up to the hilt.
As soon as the monster noticed the drop in my guard, it quickly got its claw hooked in the back of my leg.
With the claw firmly embedded, it gave a strong jerk. Losing grip of the sword, I started to plummet towards the ground. Unfortunately for me, the monster's other claw was waiting for me! I was suddenly impaled and lifted into the air. I already stabbed it! I stabbed its chest already with my own two hands! Why is it still moving? Why, why is it still alive?! How much vitality does this creature have? This isn’t fair!
I spat out some blood… The stomach acid tasted sour and burned my throat. The smell of my escaping internal organs and blood mixed together to make my nostrils go numb.
“You… Get… Get off me!”
The praying mantis’s ‘feast’ had started. Its scythe-like claws and sharp fangs were only used for dismembering its prey. The larger jaws were chattering away, while the smaller jaws were preparing to eat. As if I were some French dish, it started to cut the meat into pieces and place them into its mouth.
Without even taking a break, it kept feasting off of me. I think I’m gonna go crazy. Being eaten alive… This is torture!!! I shook my blood filled thoughts away and tried to reach the Laser Blade that was lying uselessly on the ground. But, as I watched blood slowly flow down my arm, I realized it was just out of reach.
Extreme pain ran across my entire body, and I started to lose my grip on consciousness. What was that…!? I didn't want to watch a praying mantis monster happily chewing apart my body… And, I sensed that it was about to reach my ‘vital’ parts… This is bad! Any more and I was going to be killed! I didn't want to die like this! But, I couldn’t do anything about it… It had completely disabled my movement...
Ouch! No! It hurts! No! It hurts it hurts it hurts!!!
The sound echoed the area. In an instant, its entire body has been smashed by something rock-hard. And the pain that has been killing me has reduced down.
The monster screeches. The half-closed eyelids have now completely opened up, and if I look at it even with my blurred sight, I see a praying mantis jumping and screaming and rolling around like crazy. The stomach area and below had been blown off.
I think ‘back-up’ has finally arrived. I have been released by the monster, and had been dropped to the ground.
“Guh… Cough…! Heh…”
Then something pops in my head. I swallow all the blood whirling in my mouth, stretch my hand to reach, and grab the toy blade.
Despite my shaking body, I stand up, but I’m wobbling unbalanced. Then I focus my mind onto the ‘toy blade’, and the plastic object turns into a sharp metallic blade. The object starts to shine blue and white. This isn’t enough! I must put in more energy!
I focus even more. I use all my willpower and sharpen my consciousness. The lighting blade shines stronger, and starts to become gold. All the power causes the air around me to mix in and creates many explosive noises!
The praying mantis, having half its body blown off, is still crawling around using its scythe-like arms and is trying to get up. It did well for an insect, I can say I’m impressed. But…
“It’s over now!”
I dived to the praying mantis! But that moment I felt the biggest pain come back right into my entire body… But, that doesn’t matter! As if drawing a semicircle, I swing down my blade right in front of me…
The praying mantis head flies off! My blade keeps cutting through and chops its arms off. The monster's body, without a base, drops to the ground. I, so exhausted myself, fall to the ground also.
“I… I beat it…”
I was panting really hard, panting really fast without a break. The dry ground absorbs all of the blood streaming out of my body. It’s okay that I defeated that monster, but at this rate, I’m gonna die… Well, at least it’s a lot better than being eaten alive by a praying mantis…
My mind, which was floating away, quickly came back because of that loud voice calling me.
“Sakuya! Are you alright? Sakuya!” A girl in school uniform speaks to me. This girl, who is usually aggressive, is unusually caring towards me. She is leaning over me. In the girl's hand is a Hand Gun. That is what saved my life.
“! You have a terrible wound…”
The girl, not worrying about the blood staining her clothes, puts her gun on the ground and leans over my head.
My voice which mumbled the girl’s voice was a lot worse than I thought.
“Thanks for that. You saved my life. Are you okay yourself, Akeno? Have you received any wounds?”
“You should worry about yourself, not me! Sakuya… What should we do? This terrible wound…”
“It’s okay, this is just a dream, just a nightmare… I won’t die, probably…”
“‘Probably’ isn’t good enough! If you die, who’s going to protect me!?”
She frowns at me. I’m glad, because it’s just like Akeno to add extra irrelevant words into everything she says. Even if her voice is trembling and tears are running down her eyes.
“W… Why are you smiling? I’m seriously worried about you!”
“I know… I am glad that you’re worried about me, but…”
“You’re usually tsun-tsun (snobbish) so… Your worried face is cute… Kinda…”
Akeno looked surprised, and maybe in another situation she would’ve blushed… I think I just did a confusing thing.
“You… You idiot! Even if you compliment me like that I’m not happy! You have a bad personality!”
I coughed blood out again. I’ve lost so much blood already… There’s still more!? I think I’ve lost too much… Thanks to that I don’t have any blood left in the edges of my body… So I don’t feel anything on my fingers and even my head… It feels weird… If I realize the pain has gone too…
“Just wait a sec… I’ll give you treatment!”
I’m becoming tired and sleepy, I can’t keep my eyes open and I’m getting so tired it’s hard for me to even talk.
“Let… Let me rest… o… ra…”
“No! You can’t sleep! Open your eyes! Please!”
Akeno’s voice starts to fade away. I can tell she’s shaking my body. But… Give me a break… I’m so tired… I really need to sleep… It… It feels really good like this…
I just managed to say that sentence, and then I rested my body into a deep, deep sleep.
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