Hellbound Dolls #20.5 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Epilogue)


Fingers tensed, pulled tendons like steel wires and released. My arm was still flesh, but not human; then again, did it matter?

The city was bright as bright could be, swirling with each of the senses. Scents of the street prickled against goose pimples as the light of Tokyo Tower danced on my tongue; while the hustle and bustle, panic and pain climbed the corners of my skull and skated the blade of realization. Humanity, nature and industry carried across the water and bent to my awareness.

“It’s so…”

Words caught on my tongue. None could describe the experience.

The Platinum Doll… Chiyoko, smiled and nodded. Until that point her expression had been forced; her celebration of my transcendence a point of pride more than of happiness.


Fists struck invisible targets, whipping gusts in miniature. Woe betide whatever, whoever they landed against.

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


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.


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 #13 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Prelude)


The curtains were drawn and the door barricaded; the room was empty and so was I, and we both stood, waiting. Like the uniform I wore the space held only the ruse of Yamaguchi Genkai, and not the spirit.

In my hand was a lock, cold and inert in spite of its contents. It burned against touch. Every crack, every crevice in the sculpted metal pricked my flesh like sparks. Sometimes it sent blood surging through my veins, like a second heart that rested in my pocket.

I slipped the key inside and turned.


Licks of silver poured from the keyhole and bathed the room in their light. By the dozens they rolled over my flesh, saturating my pores, seeping into my bones, and changing them into something else. Strands of hair ran down my back as my clothing came to life and took new shape.

When it was done and the glow had paled I turned to the mirror. It was the first opportunity I’d had to see her; the Platinum Doll, the demon come to life when manhood was banished.

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Hellbound Dolls #11 – “Going Platinum” (Part 11)


The monster flexed and pried the wound further. Its skin made mince of my insides, grinding a serrated coat further into the gore.

How could I have been so careless? The Black Soul Angels weren’t zombies at all; they were puppets! Every second wasted I looked past the multi-limbed creature playing them.

Ryunosuke was screaming. I wanted for him to shut his mouth, but words were drowning in the river pouring from my lips.

Shots fired and flames roared, yet the hairs of my arm prickled like they did on the coldest night.

Then I realized as I should have before; I was dying.

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Hellbound Dolls #10 – “Going Platinum” (Part 10)


Screams and gunfire, Shibuya under siege; the taste of carnage formed a thick layer on my tongue, and we were still miles away.

Ryunosuke wrapped himself around my torso, clinging like a ragdoll on a motorcycle. He was out of his depth; clutched by an actual demon.

“What are you going to do?” he pleaded.

I said nothing. Action would speak on my behalf.

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Hellbound Dolls #09 – “Going Platinum” (Part 9)


Ryunosuke was in over his head. How long had it been since he’d been minted into the Black Soul Angels? A month, maybe two; that was why I didn’t know his face. Regardless, he’d cast his lot with our enemies, and there he was, begging for his life.

“Please, you have to help me!”

He was on hands and knees, casting his gaze down and trembling. Did he know what he was asking?

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Hellbound Dolls #06 – “Going Platinum” (Part 6)


The air was thick with the blood of something inhuman. I could smell it from miles away; it reached inside and pulled, stirring depths of hatred that I’d never known. To allow it to live was a sin.

By my side, the wolf lifted itself and stood back. From its jowls it dropped an object; a lock with a key.

“Take this,” it hummed, “and release.”

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