The moon shone from high above in the clear night sky, giving off a gentle glow. But, in the abandoned streets filled with nothing but a sense of quietness, that glow turned out to become uncanny and sinister instead of the gentleness that it would’ve normally represented.
Despite the tardive hour of the day, it was still LA— A city that never sleeps, just like any other state city of America. For that very reason, the quiet and almost ghostly state of the surroundings felt so out of place. But…the quietness didn’t persist for long.
Even in the midst of the eerie silence, in one corner of the silent street, muffled moans and lustful groans of carnal passion resounded; their origin, a man and a woman engaged in the most primal activity known to the world. Nothing was left to the imagination for what was happening in the dark alleyway in this aghast hour of the night.
The sound slowly became more frantic with each passing moment. The rancor of debauchery reached an all-time high and finally, the last whimper resonated, everything once again went still like the silent and eerie surroundings.
Soon, however, a gentleman wearing a double-breasted blazer and a top hat, giving a distinct feel, walked out of the darkness while adjusting his crumpled clothes. His whole presence emanated the aura of debauchery, and the smells exuding from his expensive-looking clothes fit that description to a T.
Bowing his head, his hat in his hand, slightly toward the dark alley, he gave a mocking smile full of absolute derision before calmly walking away from the silent dark alley.
His features were indiscernible under the shadow of the hat, but his red pupils shone visibly in the dark. A sense of primal intimidation exuded from those ferocious blood-red eyes.
A few hours later, as dawn slowly crept up as the golden sun illustrated the skies with its scorching rays, a sharp scream with utter terror filled the once eerie streets as a worker who was coming back home after a hard night of work in the night shift witnessed a macabre scene in front of the alleyway of his block.
It was a fully naked woman, her dress crumpled up around her waist, laid on the ground, her stomach sliced open by god knows what and her intestines and bowels spilled out on the ground. A terrible vision of horror, such was the scene laid out in front of the terrified worker. Flies hovered over her fresh corpse, while raving mad carnivorous dogs feasted on her innards with a ghastly sense of delight.
What struck further terror into the mind of the worker, more than anything else, was the expression of pure, unadulterated delight and blissful ecstasy still visible on her face. Even as a part of it was slowly becoming the food of the crows and the bugs.
[Los Angeles; California; 2030]
LA— The city of dreams. A place where dreams were either fulfilled or crushed by the bleary reality that was forced upon the dreamers.
But it was still the greatest place to be for the dreamers.
In such a city, filled with the dreams and hopes of millions….
On the road to his campus, a young man was walking with his bag propped over his shoulders… A notepad in his hand with detailed notes scribbled throughout.
At first glance, his appearance seemed to be nothing special. An average person going about with his average life. His hair was slightly unkempt and he was slouching as he walked, a pair of thick beige-rimmed glasses hanging on his nose.
The stereotypical nerd in a way. That was all that was to this average boy.
“Oi, Book!! Yahoo!”
The young man furrowed his brows at that blatant noise directed toward him, before sighing in resignation.
He knew of only one person in the entirety of LA who would call him like that. As he thought, when he finally turned around, he could see a black car stopping not far away from him. Then walking out of the luxurious car, which could draw eyes no matter where it went, were two people dressed in equally luxurious dresses.
One was a short girl with Asian features wearing an equally short skirt that barely reached her thighs. Meanwhile, the second person was a tall young man with sweet caramel skin that gave a fine luster to his appearance. He was wearing a jacket over his beige-colored T-shirt and a pair of simple jeans to go along with it.
“Hello Kirishima-San, Steve. What can I do for you two?”
“Muh~!” pouting at the blatant distant way the boy called her, the girl asked, her head furrowing along her cute pout, “Why do you still call me by my family name while you call Steven by his nickname? It’s unfair, I tell you! Absolutely unfair.”
Ignoring the twenty-year-old girl who was throwing a tantrum like an unruly teen, he flashed a polite smile full of goodwill toward Steve, the black-skinned youth.
They were two of the very few acquaintances he had made at the University he was studying.
He wasn’t particularly interested in partying or rather, he simply didn’t have the time for anything like that. He was busy with his studies and part-time work for anything extravagant like that.
“Still, Book, how many times have I told you to be less stiff and wear more fashionable clothes?”
“I don’t have time for girls, Kirishima-san and you know that.”
“Who is talking about wearing good clothes just for girls? Haiya, boys always have such a misconception that they only need to dress well for courting girls. You should do that for yourself, you know? It’s seriously a waste of your potential.”
Sae couldn’t help but complain incessantly. In her opinion, clothes were like armor, protecting you from the views of the world. Clothing badly simply meant that you had shitty armor that would do nothing but drag you down in the end.
On the hand, Steve could do nothing but shake his head seeing the girl’s usual antics. A small smile was placed on his lips throughout the whole banter as she watched on from the side. He was a silent fellow and he generally didn’t intervene much when those two were discussing or rather bickering with each other.
He knew how stubborn they could be and didn’t want to get pulled into the fray as the third party.
Meanwhile, Adam simply sighed out loud, exasperated by the girl’s odd stubbornness on the most basic subjects. They were good friends of his and he did cherish them a great deal. But they and by they he meant Sae, could sometimes be quite tiring to be around.
The Asian girl with the shortest stature he had ever come across, Sae Kirishima, was an exotic girl with an equally exotic beauty standing at a mere 145 cm tall.
People of culture would collectively refer to her as an Oppai-Tiny, the name was self-explanatory so there was no need for him to indicate the reason behind giving her that weird term. For Adam, however, she was simply a midget that might fall at any moment the moment gravity realized the existence of those huge breasts that definitely didn’t fit her size.
Her young face, petite body, twin tails, and her radiant blue eyes filled with mischief really made her seem far younger than she actually was. This impression contrasted deeply with the clothes she was wearing.
She was wearing a mini white dress that barely went past her butt and seemed about to flash pictures of her exquisite derriere to the world at any moment. The top part of her dress had a hole cutout in the form of a heart, showing slight instances of the deep cleavage made by her gigantic C-cup breasts.
Steve on the other hand was the very definition of a simple man. Despite how rich his family was.
He was rather muscular and it was easy to see that his shirt was fighting just to contain his compact muscles. Despite that, he was rather stylish in his beige-colored T-shirt and blue Denim jeans. He had short and neatly trimmed black hair and hazel-brown eyes that gave him the appearance of a gentle teddy bear.
Compared to that, Adam, who was currently wearing a blue baggy tracksuit, a thick pair of glasses that made him seem like the very definition of a wizard or a scholar, and his long bangs covering his eyes, making his expression difficult to see, seem quite unappealing at first glance.
Sae liked to tease him by saying that he was worthy of being a hentai protagonist.
He hadn’t understood what she meant at first. But it became clear once she properly introduced him to the world of anime, manga, and the trifecta— hentai.
In her opinion, it was heresy for people to know nothing about anime. Even more so since he was half-Japanese himself.
Honestly, she could be rather intense because of her love for anime but she had guided a newbie like him pretty well. Now he wouldn’t say he was a fan but at least he wasn’t completely in the dark either.
Ignoring Sae once again, he put back his notepad and took out his phone. He needed to review the lesson of the previous day. He hadn’t been able to study lately because of his new job.
The only saving grace was that the class was conducted by a friend of his mother. A woman named Shuri. She knew his situation so she would cut him some slack every now and then.
But a piece of news caught his eyes once he opened the browser of his mobile…
[Jack the ripper strikes again.]
His face became cold at the title of the article and Sae threw a furtive glance at his phone before gagging in distaste.
Steve, seeing their reaction, took a look as well and his mood in turn soured like theirs.
Sae sighed, “Yeah, I don’t know how those vultures always get the news so fast. Neither do I get how that damn serial killer did it again right under everyone’s nose.”
Sae was upset. After all, her father was a detective working for the Los Angeles Police Department and this case was definitely weighing down on him.
This was already the fourth murder and all of them had the same MO. The target were always women who worked in the sex industry.
Because of this, the media jokingly named him the American Jack Ripper and the name stuck.
The walk toward the campus was filled with various discussions but they knew they were just doing this to cheer up Sae and forget about the sordid news.
Sometimes, Sae would shiver because of a gust of wind and Steve would snicker a little. Finally, after a while, Steve stopped mocking her and gave her his jacket.
“You guys are as friendly as always.”
“Of course~! Steve is my besty ~! We have been like, totally best friends since kindergarten.”
Steve simply nodded before continuing, “I had to bring this mini trouble with me everywhere as long as I can remember. Sometimes I feel like I am taking care of a pet.”
Steven’s parents were lawyers and Sae’s parents were cops. The two couples had worked on a few cases together and so their children became friends since childhood.
Despite how close the two of them were, they weren’t going out together.
Though it was clear from the way Sae looked at Steve sometimes that she had feelings for him. But either Steve was ignoring her intentionally or he was super dense.
‘If the three of us were classified into stereotypes. Then Steve would be the dense Protagonist who does not understand how cool he is.
Sae, the poor childhood friend who is destined to lose because of some new girl, and I would be classmate A or the poor Nerd that is magically friends with the cool kids.’
Adam sighed. Sae had really poisoned him with the anime culture.
On the way, they were greeted by many people. Showing how popular the two of them were.
Meanwhile, no one bothered to talk to him. They would also say hello to him out of politeness but they clearly weren’t really interested in him.
Once they reached the campus, the three of them separated. As they didn’t follow the same courses. Both Adam and Sae were law students while Steve was a med student.
“See you later Stevy~! Don’t you dare go home without me.”
The classroom for the third year was a rather large auditorium. There was no place assigned for university students like in high school, but after a while, some places were basically reserved.
This was even more so when said place was taken by both the 3rd and 2nd highest ranked student as well as–
“Privetik, Adam. I hope your morning went well.”
An elegant blonde-haired blue-eyed tall woman was already seated on the corner they usually took. She was wearing a black t-shirt that gave her a rather vaillant look and a tight pair of jeans that alighted her perky butt. Her white skin seemed to shine while her pearly teeth were perfectly aligned.
“Hello to you too, Natasha.”
— Natasha Antonovna Nikitina, the undisputed first-ranked student since their first year.
A foreign student originating from Russia.