The rain pelted the windows in a rhythmic way when the torrent of rain poured all over Tokyo. Hinami averted her gaze to the door that led to the hallway of the upper floor of Anteiku. Down the hall from the room she was staying in was the cafe's staff, including Kaneki and Yomo. The Manager, Yoshimura, was downstairs in the coffee shop. She tried to listen to what they were saying, but she was so stressed right at that moment that she could only make out only snippets of the conversation they were having. She heard "Doves killed Ryoko-san..." and "Poor Hinami-chan... Losing both her parents in just a span of a few weeks of each other's deaths..."
Her hands unconsciously balled up into fists, thoughts rampant in her mind. 'I wish I wasn't so fragile and weak!! If I hadn't run and fought with my kagune, then maybe my kaa-san would still be alive. But I just ran like a coward and let our enemies, the Doves or Ghoul Investigators, kill her.'
What transpired a few hours ago, when her mom was about to be killed, Kaneki covered her eyes so she wouldn't see it happen, but she still heard the weapon cut into her mother's flesh and her head rolling to the ground. And don't tell her she didn't know it was her head. She most definitely knew it was her head.
Tears sprang into her eyes, sadness coursed through her veins at the thought of having neither of her parents at her side. Hinami's father was killed a few weeks ago by the Doves and her mother was killed by the very same Dove that killed her father just a few hours before. Quickly, she wiped away the tears in her eyes when she suddenly heard the door downstairs open with its chiming bell. And she instantly recognized the scent that filtered up into the room because of her heightened sense of smell.
Touka was here.
She listened as Touka's footsteps, along with the Manager Yoshimura's, echoed up into the hallway and going past the room she was in. She kept listening to their footsteps as they walked to the room down the hall. Curiosity enveloped Hinami, which led her to stand up and walk to the door. Cracking it open slowly, Hinami stepped out of the room and tip toed all the way to the door that led to the others, her succeeding at not making a single sound; she wondered if they knew she was there because of her scent? It could not be helped now that she was right at the door itself. Hinami leaned her ear against the door and began eavesdropping on their conversation.
"What happened...?" She heard Touka ask, possibly to Yoshimura.
There was silence before he responded, which sent cold chills down her spine. "Fueguchi-san... was killed by ghoul investigators." She wanted to cry right now, but she didn't allow herself to do so when she heard Yoshimura continue. "She was trying to protect Hinami-san."
Unconsciously, she felt the silent tears that cascaded down her face in tiny streaks of silver, her wiping her face of those tears that she didn't want to show. There was a moment of pause until she heard someone slam their fist against the wall; it was most likely Touka, who was venting out her anger. Hinami knew she muttered something, but she couldn't hear it even with her heightened sense of hearing.
"What about Hinami-chan...?"
"She's sleeping in the back," he answered her, not knowing that Hinami was wide awake. Or at least that was what Hinami thought. She tried to listen to their conversation more by leaning herself closer to the door.
"Did they see her face...?" asked Touka, concern ringing in her tone.
A little bit of silence before Yoshimura responded, "Unfortunately, it couldn't be helped."
"Aw man... How could this happen...?"
"We'll be keeping Hinami-san here at Anteiku for a while...," said Yoshimura, causing both relief and sorrow to mix together in her veins. On one hand, she was grateful that she didn't have to worry about being on the streets for a while... But on the other hand, she did not want to be a burden to them all. "And when the time is right, I'm thinking about relocating her to the 24th ward..." The coldness in Hinami's blood skyrocketed, remembering what her mother told her about that ward; it didn't exist to humans, who thought that were only 23 wards, but it exists only to ghouls. And it was one of the most dangerous wards in Tokyo for weak ghouls.
But it was the only safe place for Hinami to be concealed from the Doves hunting her down. They had seen her face, the biggest mistake that a ghoul could ever make. The 24th was full of very strong ghouls.... She may be 11 years old, but she did know how to fight hand to hand combat some from Touka.
She could survive.
Hinami was sure that she would grow stronger in that ward that even Touka would acknowledge her rising strength. Heck, Touka might think she was ready for a challenge like this.
"You're kidding me right?!" yelled Touka through the door, which made Hinami flinch at the tone that she was using. "She can't survive in that shithole by herself!!"
The coldness escalated in her veins. 'Touka onee-chan doesn't think I can make it in that ward... For God's sake! She taught me how to fight!'
She didn't want to listen to the conversation anymore and strode quietly back down to the room she was staying in before she decided to eavesdrop on them. Making it inside, she shut the door carefully as she could as to not alert them all that she was conscious. Turning around, she slid down the wood of the door and curled up her knees into her chest.
Out of her control, tears streamed down her face as she sobbed into her knees. 'I'm too weak... I wasn't able to protect kaa-san or tou-san... I could have done something, but I'm too weak... Even after training me some in hand to hand combat, Touka onee-chan doesn't believe that I'm strong enough to make it on my own...'
On the surface, she was enraged that the person that taught her to fight didn't believe in her strength. But deep down, she knew that Touka was right. Hinami was too weak, both physically and mentally, right now to go to the 24th ward. She curled her hands into fists and pounded them against her knees in rage.
Touka and the others doubt.
Her life would have been okay if she wasn't what she was. Being a ghoul and not able to be near humans because of their fear of being eaten by her. She could have lived a peaceful life with her parents if they weren't ghouls. If they weren't ghouls, then the Doves would have left them alone. If only...
"I-If only I was human..,"Hinami sniveled, her salty tears staining the fabric of her clothes. "I w-wish I was human... M-Maybe I would have a better life than now... Not only that, I also to be strong... To protect what's precious to me.... But I think destiny won't let me have what I desperately wish for.... I'm destined to be a ghoul and by that, I will most surely die by the hands of Doves..... My destiny won't change no matter how much I try...." With that, she continues to sob into her knees.
:: :: ::
While she was crying, Hinami failed to notice a figure wearing an orange swirling mask that only revealed a single eye peering through the window at her. He watched her every move while shrouded in the darkness of the night.
"She's the one the old man keeps babbling about...," muttered the figure, sounding male. He adjusts the mask on his face, his one single eye swirling red as he continued to observe the young girl through the window. "Don't worry kid... That wish of yours will come true very soon... And a new destiny as well."
With that last comment, he disappeared into the shadows of the city.