Note: Wrote this two years ago from some really discombobulated notes titled Sengōkinrei Trirouzar (戦合金霊 トリロウザー), a sci-fi/mecha concept.

Adolescent Soldier

Leo chased the shadow, spurred by the flame is his heart. The concrete beneath him crackled under his soles as he ran at full speed. He and the escapee turned behind a dumpster lit in red from the town area, entering a dark, enclosed alley. In the Red Light District, a hot spot of the country's most populated urban ward, the public commotion drowned the low boom coming from the alley.

Now, the only thing that stood between the two was the bullet; behind the shadow was a building wall. The impact struck fast, and there was a sharp hiss like extinguished smoke. Leo held his pistol tightly, watching the shadow's spineless, gooey constitution snap back. Steadily, it dropped like a flower's petal to the ground. After a quiet moment, Leo calmed himself with a sigh, his fury put to sleep, not believing that he had killed a life form. He heard footsteps behind him.

"Did you pull the trigger? How did it feel?" It was the cool voice of a woman. Leo was slowly catching his breath.

"Lieutenant," his response showed familiarity of the other person. The boy's voice was a whisper, a light tone that hasn't broken through puberty.

He quickly spun around and gave the woman, who was clothed in a long, high-set black coat and boots, a face writhed in the most anger that he could muster. "I had to do it!" The woman constrained her usual look; it was so composed and severe that Leo couldn't tell if he was being scolded or not.

"I had to kill it! Isn't that why we're here?"

"Do you want to blow your cover?"


"Answer my last question, how did it feel?"

"I was glad! I had to kill it. If I didn't, it would've killed someone else." Leo clenched his hands, feeling his veins in his palm bulge. He squeezed the gun, his most reliable tool at the moment, as hard as he could. "There's…adults over there. They're probably someone's parents. I don't want them to kill again."

"This is a war brought upon us. They will kill again."

"Don't say that! Why do you say it like that?!"

"Because it's the truth! A child like you has problems facing a real truth, so you hold on to some utopian justice."

"Lieutenant!" Leo begged to the woman and shook his head, her scorching words making him blow the situation out of proportion. He couldn't deal with the thought that he could not or should not take action.

"Don't run off on your own again."