002: This Grim is Unreconciled
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While drawing circles on the ground with her finger, the ghost of a girl suddenly felt something, like an itch at the very center of her being. Discomforted, she stopped playing and looked up, only to be horror-stricken by the scene before her eyes.

"There are actually these types of weirdos in City-Y?" she blurted out.

In front of her, stood a man in a black robe. He was tall, at around six feet, but seemed tiny when compared to the scythe held in his right hand. His raised hood hid most of his face; it was as if there was a layer of darkness laying within. The only exposed part of his head was his jaw. His jaw. No skin, just the jaw. "Damn, this guy is pretty passionate!"

The girl wisely chose to ignore the man's skeleton feet and moved on.

The man, Raven Grim, had just performed a dimensional-jump from Reaper Academy to Earth when he was immediately accused of being a weirdo, and by a human of all things. He felt stifled by the prank task his sister had forced on him; by his two useless juniors she had assigned to him; by the stupid title she had chosen for herself; and by the coffee she had spilt on his best robes yesterday but then denied responsibility for, despite them being the only two in the room.

And. Now. This. Damn. Kid!

"She's just a dead girl! What right does she have to call me weird?!" he yelled to himself. "Deep breaths, Grim. Gotta stay professional. Deep breaths..."

The man had been staring at the girl for a while now, which she found odd. She took another moment to assess his outfit before it clicked, she pointed his way and shouted, "No way! You're the Grim Reaper, aren't you!"

Startled by her sudden outburst, Raven, amidst a complicated series of breathing exercises, named Grim Breaths, lost his rhythm and gave himself a minor internal injury. Despite his anger, he ignored the incredulous girl and sat down to recover from his wound. A short while later, he coughed up a mouthful of black blood.

Before he could make a move to reap the girl's soul, he thought back to what she had just said. "How did she know I was the Grim Reaper? The Grim's haven't reaped on Earth for centuries, it's even stated in our Ancestral Rules. 'Thou shalt not reap on Earth.'" If it weren't for his sister forcing him, how could he defy the Ancestral Rules?

With a deep and cold voice, he all but growled the words, "Speak, how did you know I was the Grim Reaper?" But the girl just looked at him as if he was stupid.

"Never mind that, more importantly, are you really a skeleton? How does a skeleton cough blood?" she asked, a look of pure curiosity showing on her translucent face.

At this time, Raven discerned that something was wrong. Since when was he the hot-blooded type? Since when was he so quick to anger? Even now, after hearing the girl's dismissive attitude, all he wanted to do was strangle her. "Think, Raven, why am I feeling this way? What is different?" he muttered.


The two stared at each other for what seemed like an eternity, so concentrated on the other's eyes (or lack thereof) that neither noticed a figure arriving by their sides.

"Wait, don't tell me."
"You've fallen for me, haven't you?"

She laughed lightly, her expression changing to that of a doting mother gazing knowingly at her guilty son, "No need to fret, some say love is a poison but I thi-"

"Poison! Right,"—"Hey, let me finish."—"how could I cough up black blood from simply losing rhythm? Rather,"—"Hey! Listen!"—"if not for coughing blood, I might not have noticed. What sort of treacherous pois-"

"HEY!" the girl yelled; her balled fists raised threateningly at Death himself.

Raven finally looked at the girl. And this time he really looked, taking his time to observe her. She was small, much smaller than him, maybe five and a half feet tall. She had a head of icy blonde hair that curled far past her shoulders. Her face was pretty; cute with a hint of seduction. Her eyebrows, although not thin, gave off a charming and feminine look, while a pair of bright, almond-shaped blue eyes gazed back at him, filled with both wariness and wonder.
Between her eyes and her full, red lips lay an adorable button nose that seemed to beg for a poke. The girl was slim, not skinny, but close, and her narrow shoulders and slender waist gave off a delicate feeling. As with most ghosts, her fair skin was both exceptionally smooth and see-through. "Well, that's to be expected, she is a ghost," he thought; taking a chance glance towards her physical body at the same time.

Opening his eyes wide, he yelped, "When did a Doctor get here?!" He looked back at the girl and noticed her, slowly but surely, closing her eyes as if falling asleep. "Shit!" he cursed and quickly raised his scythe before reaping it towards her.

A voice came from his side, "Success!" the doctor cheered after feeling the girl's heartbeat resume.

Raven, the Grim Reaper, Death Incarnate, stood frozen on the spot, staring wide-eyed at the now-breathing girl. Disbelief was plastered across his face, even his Skeleton Illusion showed signs of instability. "I..."

Raven Grim. The youngest Titled Reaper in the history of Reaper Academy. The Reaper acclaimed most likely to gain Imperial favor in the past thousand years by The Soul Street Journal. The absolute number one most handsome reaper of the younger generation as voted by Teen Scythe Magazine. That Raven Grim just... "failed?"

"This Grim is unreconciled!"
Unfortunately, there were no ghosts left to hear him.