Hellbound Dolls #19 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Part 6)

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A hot river sprayed through my fingers and into the chasm bridging the skyline. Even at half strength my bounds traveled faster and farther than human or beast; so long as I did not hesitate or nurse my wounds too closely.

How could I have been so weak? Two hundred souls had been claimed as mine, only for the rest snatched by a pretender whose scars paled in comparison. Who did he think he was to usurp my holy quest?

Wounds wept through the hand squeezed against it, losing life to the gravel. The power of Dollkind burned at the flesh, pulling it closed, sealing it in my vessel, but not fast enough.

Every second was vital.

“CAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW!”

Tarred wings streaked toward the sky, and with it pulled a gust that knocked me from my feet. It’s scream tore through my ears, and a new layer of agony left other senses scrambling.

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Hellbound Dolls #17 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Part 4)

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I stood in the shadows, back to a pillar, and listened. The Hellbound Dolls had assembled, just as they did most other nights by the restless water. This time, however, their tone was serious.

“Who the hell do you think you are?”

It was the heavy one with the English name; the one most ravaged by the poison hormone, the one whose frame could match the width of two others. The fact likely fed her fountain of rage.

Yamaguchi sighed, loud enough to be heard by all. “Don’t think I would take this from you,” he reasoned, “but there’s more to this than even I know. The last thing I want to do is lead you to danger.”

“What kind of danger?” Saito, the one they called Yumiko, pressed.

Silence. Shifting of gravel.

“I don’t know,” Yamaguchi hummed.

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Hellbound Dolls #16 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Part 3)

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How to describe the smell of demonic flesh…

It goes beyond anything that a human might experience, lower than the most wretched depth of disgust. To call it a feculent odor of maggots rotting under the sun would cannot begin to convey the vileness. The aroma supersedes your senses and claws at your gut, washing over your pores, and covers you with filth that can only be cleansed with fire.

Imagine the way my stomach churned as the crow spirit flapped its wings in my face, filling the air with its scent. I launched away from the swipe of its talons. Had I not the composure of a supernatural being I might have doubled over and wretched instead of rolling to safety.

I reclaimed my footing and launched back, flinging twin blades. They flew over the expanse between us; one lodged itself under the demon’s wing, and the other in its neck.

The chasm between doll and foe snapped shut and I clung to its feathers, pulling out handfuls of the tar-coated quills covering its hide. With every ounce of strength in my body I fought to hold on against pecking, clawing, and jerking of gravity as our combined weight pulled us from flight.

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Hellbound Dolls #12.5 – “Going Platinum” (Epilogue)

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Quiet yet confident, furious and enigmatic; even from afar one could see Yamaguchi Genkai would not go down without a fight. How would finesse fare against her brawling technique? Myriad outcomes danced in the eye of my mind.

My dagger kissed the stone, ground the edge of the blade and agreed; whatever took place I would be the victor. Fate would not forgive me otherwise.

A wind blowing through Tokyo Tower announced the arrival of a spirit. Even before I caught his scent I knew he was coming.

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