PSC Series: The Haunted CelebrityChapter:
the GazettE, SCREW, Alice Nine, ViViD, more to comeDisclaimer:
I don't own the guys. Just the story.Pairings:
AoixRuki, ByouxRui, probably more to comeGenre:
AU, horror, supernaturalRating:
PG, for nowWarning:
"PSC, which stands for Paranormal Studies Center, is an institution whose main object is to investigate various paranormal and supernatural events. This is the Department of Investigation and Recovery, where all investigative tasks are being done. My name is Kai, and I am the head of this Department. Welcome. How may I help you?"
“I’m sure he’ll call you soon, Kai,” Uruha said, steering his car into the apartment complex’s parking lot. The large concrete yard was rather deserted this morning; there were only two other cars beside Uruha’s parked near the building. By the looks of it, those might not be the occupants’ vehicles. There must be an underground parking facility to stash all the expensive, fancy cars that belonged to the people who were living in this complex.
Uruha parked his own car on an empty space—shaded under the shadows cast by the apartment buildings—and stepped out. He pocketed his car keys, shouldered his bag, and continued to listen patiently to Kai’s high-pitched complaints on the phone.
“I don’t know,” Uruha spoke up once Kai stopped long enough to allow him to talk. “Yes, I understand that he should have called you first. I’m sure he has his own reason. He said it’s an emergency. I don’t know what it is. No, seriously, Kai, I don’t know.”
His footsteps took him across the parking lot, all the way toward the main building’s entrance. The door had a simple but futuristic design—all grey and white—that, he personally thought, looked rather cold and harsh. If it was meant to scare people away, it was doing its purpose very well.
“Okay. Okay. Yes, I’ll tell him. I won’t forget. Yes. I’ve got to go now, Kai. Okay. See you later. And, oh—” Uruha grinned, “—I might need a large cup of cold latte once I arrive at the office.”
Uruha ended the call with a sigh. If he had known Ruki hadn’t contacted Kai, he wouldn’t have called the worrywart. It was unusual that Ruki had called Uruha first before saying anything to Kai—the stick-to-the-procedure type of man that he was—but he must have had his reason. And Uruha would find out what that reason was… soon.
Standing in the lobby, looking as if he hadn’t had any sleep, was Ruki. Uruha greeted him, which was replied with a weak nod and a tired smile.
“I thought you’d gone back to sleep after you hung up,” he said. “Come on. I need some help upstairs.”
The inside of Yuu’s apartment was a lot cozier and friendlier than the building’s façade that Uruha had seen outside. The interior was mostly black and white, with simple but personal little decorations installed on the most eye-catching places. It wasn’t really fancy, different from what Uruha had thought before entering the apartment. He had imagined a celebrity like Yuu would have been living in a luxurious place—a place like those that Uruha had only seen on TV shows—but this was rather normal. He could actually believe that he was standing in the middle of an apartment next door from where he lived.
“He just woke up,” Ruki said. Uruha turned to see his colleague walking out of a room—probably Yuu’s bedroom.
“Are you sure it’s okay to invite me here without his permission?” Uruha asked.
Ruki shrugged. “It’s an emergency. I’m sure he won’t mind, especially after what happened last night.”
“So what exactly happened last night? You haven’t told me anything yet.” Uruha walked slowly around what he thought to be the living room—pristine white sofas and black mahogany tables and tall, black book shelves—admiring what he was seeing. His senses were calm; nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
“Something attacked him again,” Ruki answered, dropping himself heavily on one of the sofas. “It happened when he was in the bathroom, taking a shower. The creature touched him, and…”
The pause made Uruha turn. “And?”
“And it actually threatened me.”
“Threatened you? How?” Uruha approached the sofa and sat down next to Ruki.
This was not a very pleasant update. Not only that the creature could communicate clearly, it could also make physical contact and was totally aware of everything around it. But then it didn’t have the kind of aura that they could detect. The guys from Astral Aura Detection couldn’t sense anything when they were here. What was it exactly they were dealing with? The more Uruha heard about it, the more worried he became.
Both Ruki and Uruha looked up when they caught sight of a black haired man walking out of a room. It was Yuu, and he looked absolutely disheveled; messy bed hair, pale face, and a pair of dark circles around his eyes. He looked like he hadn’t had a very good sleep—and that might have been the case, if what Ruki had just told him was accurate. However, when the man noticed Ruki and Uruha sitting in his living room, he smiled.
“Good morning,” he said. “Sorry I just woke up.”
Uruha stood up and walked across the room. Upon approaching the actor, he offered his hand. “That’s fine,” he said, grinning when Yuu shook his hand. “I swear you look a hundred times better than I do when I wake up in the morning.”
After some brief chit-chat, and after letting Yuu clean himself up a bit, the three of them were sitting in the living room; now with three cups of coffee on the table between them. Uruha breathed in the delicious vapor wafting from the cups, and felt slightly happier than a few moments ago.
Ruki had just asked Yuu to explain what had happened to him last night, and now the man was telling Uruha all the creepy little details. It sounded almost like a part from a horror movie, only this was for real. Yuu seemed genuinely scared, like any other people who wasn’t used to experiencing contact with ‘the others’.
Uruha understood why Yuu felt so intimidated. An encounter with creatures from the other world could be horrifying, even traumatizing if it was happening to a common person who had never had experienced anything like it before. Uruha himself had been dealing with supernatural things ever since he had started becoming aware of his surroundings. So, quite reasonably, he had gotten totally used to creatures popping in and out of his sight. The ability to converse to them had come a bit later, when he was eight years old. Back then one of his neighbors had died, and the morning after his funeral, Uruha had sat on his porch, thoughtlessly called out his dead neighbor. The man had appeared almost immediately—half-solid, half-smoke—and they had talked about a lot of things Uruha had hardly understood back then. And then he had left his last message, which was for Uruha to take care of his little spaniel dog, and once Uruha had agreed to do it, he had disappeared.
The little spaniel dog’s name was Jiro, and every single afternoon it would sat on the porch, staring straight ahead, as if waiting for its master to come home.
The same thing happened quite regularly after that, although Uruha had learned well not to boast his ability to anyone. He knew that the ability to see ghosts, let alone talk to them, was seen as weird, maybe even creepy among regular people. He had tried to live normally, to act like he hadn’t been seeing dead people float by around him and talking to him. But then he got signed into PSC where everyone was so familiar with anything supernatural, and all of a sudden his ability didn’t seem so weird anymore—and he could even make a living out of it.
But back to the matter at hand; considering just how inexperienced Yuu was in supernatural things, and bearing in mind that this entity they were dealing with seemed to be an aggressive kind, Uruha knew they had to be careful. And on top of that, they had to hurry. If what Yuu had just told them was true, then this entity had a high tendency of becoming desperate and even violent. The last thing they would ever want was to have one of Japan’s top leading famous actors getting hurt by something unexplainable.
“Okay, so,” Uruha turned toward Ruki, “basically you want me to try summoning this creature. But to be honest, Ruki, I can’t sense anything right now—at least any creature that may seem violent.”
“I know that, Reita and Hiroto told me the same thing,” Ruki said. He was holding his coffee cup so close to his nose as if he was revering it. “I’m just wondering, Uruha. If it’s not possible to summon the culprit itself, can you summon something else, some other creature around here that might tell us what we need to know?”
Uruha took one moment thinking about Ruki’s suggestion. “Hmm…” he murmured afterwards. “I think that’s a good idea. Yeah, I think we can do that. You better cross your fingers and pray there’s going to be someone who will talk.”
Around half an hour later, Uruha had grabbed his bag, and everyone had moved into Yuu’s bedroom. Uruha was sitting on the floor, spreading his tools in front of him. Yuu was standing on the side staring Uruha’s equipments, profoundly fascinated.
“Will it be dangerous?” he asked, eyeing the haraigushi
that Uruha had just pulled out of his bag.
Uruha shook his head, grinning. “Not if I can help it,” he said. “But just in case, I’ll set up the protection circle. This circle will act as a cage for the creature during the summoning, making sure it doesn’t run around uncontrolled. At the moment I don’t have the material to build an actual protection circle, but I can make do with salt. It’s not conventional, I know, but it’s all I’ve got. Do you mind if I sprinkle some salt on your floor? I’ll make sure to clean it up later after the whole ritual is done.”
Yuu shrugged. “Go ahead. Don’t worry about it.”
With practiced ease, Uruha reached toward a plastic jar that he carried everywhere with him, opened its cap and grabbed a handful of salt. He sprinkled it in a circular motion around himself, creating a white circle made out of salt with a diameter of around two feet. He made sure that there was no hole in the circle, so that whatever was trapped inside could not escape. Once that was done, he pulled out a yellow piece of paper and placed it in the middle of the circle he had just made.
“Oh, an ofuda
,” Yuu pointed. “Like the ones Reita gave me.”
“Right,” Uruha said, stepping out of the circle. “But not quite similar. This one right here is not an ofuda
to repel supernatural creatures. On the contrary, it attracts them.”
The next minute, everything was set. Yuu and Ruki were sitting on the floor on a little distance—just to be safe; no matter how prepared Uruha was, he couldn’t guarantee an evil entity would not make its appearance. It was a bit unfortunate that Ruki hadn’t called Reita too, because if he had come as well, there would have been someone else who could protect Ruki and Yuu if anything bad happened. But there was no helping; Uruha was all by himself, so he would have to do his best and pray everything would go as planned.
Uruha held his haraigushi
tightly in his right hand, took a deep breath, and started mumbling his usual summoning chant. As soon as he began, the temperature in the room took a slight drop. The curtains swayed slightly as though wind was blowing, but the windows were closed. Uruha stood calmly, continuing his chant, faster and louder by the minute. And then something appeared.
It was like a puff of smoke at first, materializing in the middle of Uruha’s protection circle. Its form was slowly taking shape into a person’s—a woman’s. She was wearing a simple one-piece dress; she had shoulder-length hair, beautiful face, and a bloody gaping hole in the middle of her chest. Uruha could hear Yuu’s shocked gasp at the sight, but he himself kept his cool and tried not to stare at the gruesome wound. It must have been the cause of her death, but Uruha knew better than to ask her about it. His life-long experience had taught him that not all spirits liked to be asked about how they had died.
The woman was hovering inside the circle; her hair floating around her white face, and her black eyes were fixed on Uruha. She looked tormented and miserable, but she didn’t seem to be menacing.
Her mouth was almost still when she spoke, and her voice sounded like a whisper of cold wind softly blowing against the dried grasses. “Who brought me here?”
Uruha gripped his haraigushi
a little tighter. “I’m sorry for disturbing you,” he apologized first. It’s always best to apologize to spirits before trying to get information from them; he had, after all, ‘kidnapped’ them from their restless wandering.
“I’ll only be asking you a couple of questions, and then you’re free to go your own way.”
He would have offered her salvation if only he had the abilities to, but he hadn’t. That would be a job for Shou or Reno or any other guys in the Exorcism section.
“Are you a resident in this place?” The first question.
Her gaze flickered toward the window for a second. “No. Here sometimes, down there on the streets sometimes. Other places, too. I don’t linger anywhere.”
A passer-by, Uruha thought. He hoped she had been passing by Yuu’s apartment often enough to be able to provide a helpful answer.
“When was the last time you visited this apartment?” was Uruha’s next question.
“A few nights ago,” she answered.
“When you were here, did you see anyone else? Another otherworldly presence?”
“Several… some other that don’t linger like me,” she answered.
“Have you seen any of them interacting with the owner of this apartment? With him?” Uruha pointed toward Yuu on his right.
The female spirit turned her head around languidly as if she was moving on slow motion, until her gaze fell upon Yuu. Yuu looked nervous, but to Uruha’s relief, he stayed put and courageously stared back as the spirit eyed him.
“No,” she answered after a moment. “None of us… none of us…”
Uruha frowned. “What do you mean none of you?”
“None of us…” she said again, turning her attention elsewhere again. Sunlight streaming from the window shone into the room; streaks of light beamed through the spirit’s body, giving the impression that she was fading bit by bit.
“So… you’re saying there is someone else?” Uruha pressed on. “Who is it?”
“None of us… None of us…” she kept repeating with a vacant expression on her face, as if she was losing interest in the conversation. Well, that might be true, since she had been dragged here by force. Spirits, just like living beings, had their own businesses that they had to attend to.
Uruha sighed. “Alright then, thanks for your help.”
Thinking that this woman’s spirit couldn’t be of much help, he stepped forward to commence the releasing ritual. He looked up to her black eyes and softly whispered, “I now release you from this circle. Be at peace.” Then, with the tip of his toes he swept a small hole on the protection circle.
The woman turned back into a gust of smoke that seemed to be sucked out by an invisible force outside the circle. Uruha was just about to kneel down to pull his ofuda
off of the floor, but before the apparition completely disappeared, she spoke.
“Fear not of the dead, but the living.”
All three men were silent as the room returned to normal. The voice of the female ghost lingered in the air among them—eerie, haunting, and most of all, confusing.
- TO BE CONTINUED -
= Purification wand. A wooden stick up to a metre long with streamers of white paper and/or flax attached to the end. (more info
* The summoning method mentioned in this chapter is only fictional, completely made-up, of course, because I have no idea what kind of ritual is used to summon spirits.
* Sorry for the long wait... m(_ _)m
* I hope you enjoy this chapter! ^^Previous chapters: 1
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