For a long while — how long had it even been
since he’d woken up on that damn train? — Kou had thought that he was the only one of his world that had been dragged to this strange dimension. He was finally getting used to that fact — to being the only Ajin amongst a sea of the normal and abnormal, of people and monsters alike. Honestly, living in a world that didn’t actively target and discriminate against Ajins was nice. Like, really
nice. He could live a relatively normal life, free of crazy terrorists and the threat of capture and experimentation. That was what Nagai had wanted, right?
He couldn’t ignore the occasional burst of agitation, the unease that burned beneath his skin. Sure he was doing alright, but what about everyone else back home? What was Nagai doing? Was Satou still on the warpath? And what about that firefighter guy, the one he’d made a promise too all those months ago?
I promised him that I would stop Satou. How can I ever expect to keep that promise now?
Ironically, it was while he was stewing over this exact thought that Kou saw the hat. His hat.
He’d done this before — he’d see a hat that closely resembled Satou’s and his heart would immediately leap into his throat, only for him to realize a moment later that it was just a hat, that Satou wasn’t here and he needed to drill that realization into his thick skull, idiot. But this time, it wasn’t just the hat. It was also the hair, the face… this time, he wasn’t just seeing things.
Satou was here. And Kou didn’t know if he should be feeling furious or terrified.
He gasped as soon as he recognized the old man, and immediately scrambled to hide around the nearest corner as if he were under the irrational thought that Satou would gut him with his IBM on sight. Fuck, fuck. He was here. He was really here.
What am I supposed to do?
He didn’t have anyone to help him this time. Not Nagai, not the firefighter guy, nothing. But at the same time, he couldn’t just let the man go. He couldn’t just sit back and do nothing. He’d made a promise.
So he followed Satou from a distance, trying to hide himself in the crowd of passersby. Where was he going, what was he doing…
… who was that he was looking at?
”Hmm?” Kou muttered to himself, peering curiously through the crowd as he noticed Satou’s eyes focus in on someone. It looked like… a girl? Just a normal, human girl. And, for some reason, that was enough to set him off.
Rage immediately twisted in Kou’s gut. He didn’t think — why did he never stop to think? — he just moved, feet pounding on the pavement as he shoved his way past startled strangers. He didn’t care why Satou was looking at some random girl. Maybe the old man hadn’t even been planning to hurt her... but he had hurt so many others, had killed so many others. Kou couldn’t watch him do the same things in Hialao that he had done in Japan. He wouldn’t.
”SATOU!” he roared, skidding to a halt in front of the Man in the Hat with fire in his eyes and not a single clear plan in his mind. Shit, this was when having someone like Nagai around would be really fucking useful. But Nagai wasn’t here. For all he knew, it was just him and Satou that had been pulled into this world. He was on his own.
So, he improvised. ”What are you doing here?” Kou snapped, clinging to his anger like a lifeline. It burned away his insecurities, his fears, allowed him to say what needed to be said. ”How did you get here? Are you planning to take over this place like you tried to do in Japan? Huh?!”
Yea, this was going to work wonderfully. He’d completely thought this out.