Shiki

Shiki (屍鬼 Corpse Demon) is a horror novel by novelist Fuyumi Ono, originally published in 1998. A manga adaption illustrated by Ryu Fujisaki was serialized from December 2007 onwards. The anime adaptation by Daume begins broadcasting on July 8, 2010, with US simulcasting with Funimation Entertainment on their online video portal.

There is an opening and ending theme to the series:

1. “Kuchizuke” (くちづけ Kiss) by Buck-Tick
2. “Calendula Requiem” by kanon×kanon
3. “Walk no Yakusoku” (walkの約束 Promise of the Walk) by nangi
4. “Gekka Reijin” by Buck-Tick


In the small and quiet village of Sotoba, death mysteriously spreads across the village. Simultaneously, a strange family, the Kirishiki, moves into a long abandoned mansion of Kanemasa. A young resident of the village, Yuuki Natsuno, who despises living in the small town, begins to be pursued and surrounded by death. The country girl, Shimizu Megumi, who has a one-sided crush on him, goes missing, only to be found in the woods but later dies from a supposed anemic disease.The dean of the hospital, Ozaki Toshio thinks it’s an epidemic. But as the deaths increases, he begins to realize that the village is attacked by vampires.

July 8, 2010, Ep. 1: First Blood

Shimizu Megumi, a 10th grade student, thinks she is meant for bigger things than a small village like Sotoba. She always dressed up, with no where to go, and snubbing the locals for their inane rural talk about the cows and idle chatter. She wants to be discovered for her talents and then leave town. However, there are two things in Sotoba that she loves. One is Yuuki Natsuno, a boy who recently moved from the city into the village with his family. She stalks him at night, thinking he doesn’t realize it. The other, is the long abandoned European mansion/castle atop of the hill. Both are out of her reach.

On August 6, a trio of neighbors are found dead by Muroi Seishin, a local priest and a famous novelist. The town’s hospital dean Ozaki Toshio, fondly called Waka-sensei, examines the decomposed corpses only to discover that the old woman died after the other two victims, and was living with them for two whole days. Seishin and Toshio have been friends since childhood. This does not look like a random animal attack.

Three days later, while waiting for the bus, Yuuki bumps into Megumi, who he promptly ignores. Later that night, a moving company arrives into Sotoba looking for the Kanemasa mansion on the hill.

August 11, the news get around that the Kirishiki family of three, with a daughter, has taken up residence at the Kanemasa mansion, but they were oddly moving in the dead of the night.

The next day, Megumi goes up to the mansion, hoping to make their acquaintance and gaining something in return, while ignoring the greetings of her school mate, Tanaka Kaori. Once she reaches the mansion, she feels as if she is being watched as someone greets her from afar. That night, when Megumi doesn’t return home, the townspeople sets out a search party looking for her. They soon find her lying catatonic in the woods. Ozaki sensei is immediately sent for, and finds her anemic.

Megumi

Megumi: country bumpkin on a stalking mission

August 13, Kaori sees the beautiful Sunako of Kanemasa and ogles in awe of her elegance. She visits Megumi to gossip about the new residents only to find her looking very haggard.

Two days later, much to the shock of horror of family and friends, Megumi passes away. Yuuki is the only one remotely relief as he no longer has to draw his windows at night again.

Little does he know, but he will soon be surrounded by death.

July 15, 2010, Ep. 2: Second Decay

Megumi is pronounced dead by Ozaki sensei. He suggests an autopsy to reveal the cause, but the family vehemently denies the request as she was only a child. So he calls it as he sees it; dying at 2 am of initial anemia and then of heart failure.

Natsuno

Natsuno: city slicker

August 16, Natsuno leaves his house knowing he won’t be stalked, but bumps into the Kunihiro Ritsuko, a nurse from Ozaki Clinic. She drags him to Megumi’s funeral. Even in death, she is still haunting him. Earlier, Kaori went to Megumi’s place and found her final letter addressed to Natsuno. At the funeral parlor, Kaori sees Natsuno and tries to give him Megumi’s card, but he refuses it. The villagers mourn Megumi’s death, stating that even children can die.

The next day, Megumi’s bloodwork is back. Her cause of death is a rare case of anemia, or is it? Ozaki is unsure. There were no external wounds, and neither were there internal bleeding. The clinic gets a call reporting another dead body. This time, the victim might have started out with a summer cold or fever but she specifically told her caregiver not to call the doctor. Ozaki begins to piece his information together. All recent victims started out with fever-like symptoms, which made them extremely lethargic. A few days later, they all died.

One August 21, the number of deaths begin to rise in the small village. Ozaki calls up town councilman Ishida to check on the number of people who died in that month alone. Meeting with his friend the monk, Seishin, they conclude that something like this had occurred 20 years ago.

The following day, while studying at night, Natsuno sees a figure looking in from the woods into his room. Could it be? All the same, he closes his windows again, but he still feels the eyes on him.

Seishin

Seishin the clueless monk and part-time novelist

Two days later, the doctor, the monk and the councilman meet after days of rain pouring into the village. Ishida reveals to them that 10 people have since died mysteriously between Sotoba and Mizobe, a neighboring village, in the short period of time. They have to assume the worse; an epidemic is spreading across the villages. The previous victims were anemic, thus causing the exhaustion. They were all in a daze and unable to function. They all die rather quickly. But without solid and valid information they are just hypothesizing. The trio will begin their investigation into the matter starting with the victims’ families.

July 22, 2010, Ep. 3: Third Tragedy

Muroi Seishin, the monk who is also a famous author, is working on his new novel called “Shiki,” a story of the accursed. The protagonist of his story slew his brother. However, he finds himself standing face-to-face once again with a very much alive brother. Seishin has a fan in Kirishiki Sunako, the 13-year-old daughter of the new family at Kanemasa mansion. She claims to be an avid reader of his works through the years; reading everything from his books to essays in magazines. The family moved just to be closer to him. Because of his writings, she expected him to have tails and horns. What he lacks in horns, he certainly makes up in scars. She seems to be privy to his attempted suicide (during a drunken stupor in the university) from the past. Seishin calls out to her, “Sunako-chan,” and she bites, “I’m NOT little.” She then regains her composure and comments that, “Slitting the wrist isn’t enough to kill someone.”

One scary chick

Sunako: One scary chick

On August 25, Natsuno heads to school and meets his best friend, 12th grader Mutou Tohru, and Ozaki Clinic nurse Ritsuko. They are the only two people in the village who has truly given Natsuno a real chance to fit in. Instead of walking three hours to Mizobe, he thumbs a ride with them as Tohru practices his driving skills with Ritsuko watching him. Lately, he hasn’t been getting enough sleep. It always feels like someone’s watching him. But at least he can catch a cat nap in the car. When Natsuno first moved to the village, he wanted nothing to do with them (he still doesn’t) until he met Tohru. Not only was he an outsider, but he had a different last name from his father, which made him stand out like a sore thumb in the eyes of the villagers. He returned home from school one day with a flat tire. Tohru offered to fix it even though Natsuno didn’t want any help. Over time, they became friends. They drop off Ritsuko at the Ozaki Clinic. There they meet another classmate, Murasako Masao who has very sharp features that looks horrifyingly scary. Never mind his looks, his award-winning personality makes him look like prince charming incarnate. On top of that, Masao has a strained relationship with his family, where he hates his sister-in-law, Chizuko, and the hatred is consequently transferred to his 3rd grade nephew Hiromi and niece, Chika. He has been avoiding them ever since their arrival. Only Tohru, calls him friend. Having Natsuno show up in the village, and Tohru taking him under his wing, is not Masao’s idea of fun. Tohru was his alone. That is why, Masao abhors Natsuno.

Natsuno's rainbow - Tohru

Natsuno's rainbow - Tohru

At the clinic, Tajima’s blood results are back. It is yet another case of anemia, but without any abnormalities nor signs of bleeding internally or externally. It’s mind-boggling.

The next day, Ozaki’s childhood friend, Yasumori Mikiyasu, brings his wife Nao in for her lethargy (anemia). He inspects her, sees bites on her hand and brushes it off as insect bites. He finds out that Nao fell ill a few days back, but she wasn’t in contact with any of his clients or workers who looked like they may have caught the summer cold. Only difference is meeting the Kirishiki couple, Chizuru and Seishirou, a few nights ago while the family was out playing fire works. They invite the strange neighbors to visit with them, and they promised that they will definitely hold them up to that offer. Unfortunately for them, only Susumu the child is able to sense something amiss of the couple.

Two days later, Nao soon passes away as Masao watches the procession go by. He hurries over to Tohru’s to relay the latest tidbit, only to see Natsuno camping out at the Mutou’s. To rile him up, Masao calls Natsuno a dick for turning down Shimizu. “She may be rolling over in her grave now.” Suddenly the sleepy Natsuno perks up at the mere mention of her name. They almost end up in a brawl, but for Tohru stepping in to stop them. Tohru tells Natsuno, “You’re smarter than him. Be nicer to him.” Yeah – the boy sure knows how to act like a demented individual.

Since Natsuno is over at Tohru’s he may as well stay over. He can’t seem to sleep at home anymore. As night falls, Tohru ventures out of the house to get pop from a vending machine. His coin rolls under just as someone approaches him from afar. A figure with blue hair and horns introduces himself as Tatsumi, the Kirishiki steward. Ever friendly, Tohru invites Tatsumi to his house.

“Can I bring a friend?”

“Sure!” Tohru replies enthusiastically without the least bit of suspicion.

July 29, 2010, Ep. 4: Fourth Death

September 1, at the Ozaki clinic, nurse Kunihiro Ritsuko learns that a local policeman, Takami, has died from the same “summer cold” as the rest of the earlier victims. Consequently, the family has moved in a haste without so much as saying goodbye to the villagers. Sotoba PD has replaced Takami with another officer named Sasaki. Coincidentally, a few families have also relocated after a family member passed away. The Shinoda and Kanamasa families used the same moving company, Takasago. Is there a link? Or is it pure coincidence?

Natsuno can barely sleep now. Every time he falls asleep, he sees Shimizu. In his dream-like state, she becomes more and more daring and finally enters his room.

Elsewhere, the doc Ozaki is called to resuscitate his friend’s son, Susumu, who seems to be suffering from a similar malady that claimed his mother recently. Incidentally, Mikiyasu, is also exhibiting the early symptoms of the sickness too. As Ozaki draws his blood, he sees similar bite marks on Mikiyasu but once again brushes it off as unrelated. The entire family is just doomed from the moment they invited the Kirishiki into their home. Ozaki immediately calls on Seishin the monk to tell him of the latest developments. Unfortunately, Ozaki has not cure for both father and son and they soon die from the illness.

With the death of so many friends, Seishin goes into the forest to find solace. He sees Sunako at the temple ground in the middle of the forest. He shares with her his secret base. The church was built by one of the Kanemasa. She explains that because of her sickness, and her aversion to daylight, she only goes for walks at night. Sunako has been diagnosed with SLE Lupus, an autoimmune disease, which can be triggered through exposure to sunlight. It would explain her ghastly pale tone and her creeping around at night. Seishin then tells her about an old friend who died recently, with the rest of his family, including his young son. She responds by telling him that, “Death is terrible for everyone. It is impartial. That’s why it’s fearsome. Everything is meaningless in the face of death. Since it destroys everything, death is terrible.” After her little speech., she proclaims that it is time to return. However, can she visit again? Of course!

Before she leaves, Seishin warns her, “It’s dangerous out there. Be careful.” I wonder who has to be cautious of whom?

She promises to return the next time with one of his books and he can autograph it.

September 12, Ozaki returns to the clinic, and gathers his staff and other doctors from the city for a round table meeting. Since September 10th, 19 people have died of the “outbreak.” They have to get to the root of the matter before this epidemic claims more lives. For all victims, this is not a pre-existing condition. Neither is it an allergy. It begins a normocytic anemic but without any visible bleeding. Most have cardiac arrest due to PNH. There are also signs of lung, liver and kidney failure. It doesn’t seem like it is transmitted through the family, although, most families perish together after one is “infected.” If it was transmitted through families, the attending physicians will be infected too. Could it be transmitted through animals or insects? They can’t share this new information, as there is no reason to give rise to unwarranted panic.

The sleep deprived Natsuno boards the bus to school but falls asleep in it. He is awakened by the sight of Megumi greeting him. Unable to quell his feeling of unease, he heads to Tohru’s place to finally get a restful night.At the Mutou’s, he is greeted by Tohru’s younger siblings, Aoi and Tomatsu. Tohru then begs Natsuno for a favor, to go driving with him and Ritsuko that weekend. He didn’t have the nerve to ask her himself to go on a date, but if Natsuno comes along, she wouldn’t feel threatened. As he dejectedly agrees, he falls asleep, but not before Tohru tells him he has gotten another mattress for him. This means that Natsuno can stay over whenever he wants. As the night grows long, two figures appear. Megumi and Tatsumi appear in the room as Natsuno feels their presence. He tries to move, but he is frozen. Turns out, it’s only Aoi checking up on Tohru, but leaves when she realizes her brother is asleep. After the door closes, Megumi creeps out from underneath the bed in the room. As she crawls out calling Natsuno’s name, she readjusts her spine, and tells him she hates Tohru. She hates him because Natsuno likes Tohru more than her. She has returned from the dead, to stop Tohru. As she sinks her fangs into Tohru, Natsuno drifts away into the unconscious.

Feeding time!

Feeding time!

Aug. 5, 2010, Ep. 5: Fifth Deceit

Natsuno awakens the morning. He remembers the events during the night but doesn’t want to acknowledge it. He soon realizes that Tohru has been missing school after the incident. He finally goes in search of Tohru, only to end up at his house where Ozaki sensei rushes through. He is shocked to see him pronounced dead by the sensei. The events of that night was real.

He returns home dejected, just as his mother hands him a postcard from Shimizu Megumi. Didn’t she pass away a while back? He creates an excuse, saying it must have got lost in the mail the first time around and is only finally getting to him. After his mother leave, he angrily tears up Megumi’s freshly delivered postcard.

At Tohru’s funeral, Masao tries to provoke Natsuno into a fight, after his own quarrels with his family over them caring more for his sick nephew Hiromi than him. He is stopped and chased away by Tohru’s siblings for disturbing the peace of the dead. Masao was trying to find someone to console him, instead of him doing the job of consoling the Tohru family.

Elsewhere, Seishin the monk interviews the friends and family of the deceased. It seems that a majority of them resigned from their jobs before their death. His investigation leads him to the local librarian, but he too has left his job. (dramatic pause)

A runaway Masao returns home and sees a strange figure in white entering his house’s courtyard. But upon closer inspection, the man disappears. The ghostly figure soon attacks him, but not before he recognizes him as the librarian.

Aug. 12, 2010, Ep. 6: Sixth Skull

September 19, a heartbroken Megumi picks up her shredded postcard and returns to the forest in tears. Her pain soon turns into hatred. The next morning, Natsuno confirms that Megumi did indeed visit – evident by the missing postcard. He pledges to himself that he won’t be killed off so easily.

At the Murasako rice shop, Hiromi is pronounced dead, while Masao falls ill, unable to cry for help. He dies the next day, with barely anyone noticing or missing him.

A deadly ill Yoshidae, diagnosed with cyanosis, is finally brought in to the Ozaki clinic by his wife who has treated him with traditional herbal medicine only. Ozaki loses his patience and yells at the woman. As he draws the patient’s blood, he sees the bite marks again. Seishin and Ozaki meet to compare notes. However, Seishin’s investigation only points to victims quitting their jobs before their death and families leaving without so much as telling a neighbor. As Ozaki hears this, he finally loses it. First people decide to “cure” themselves. Then his friend checks out and reports on things unrelated to their epidemic. Remembering his father telling him not to ever lose lives under the Ozaki name, he lashes out at Seishin in frustration and anger.

Seishin ambles to the church as Sunako visits him with his book to get his autograph. He warns her not to venture out alone too often, especially with her illness. She assures him that they have a live-in doctor, who even cares for her mother. If not for her illness, she should also stay home as there is an outbreak of an unknown epidemic claiming the lives of the villagers.

That night, Natsuno rents vampire flicks and watches with Tomatsu. He tells Natsuno of the legend of the Rising Dolls (or vampires). The next day, Natsuno runs to the library to do his own research on the subject. With no librarian, he sneaks behind the desk and finds out that Seishin the monk has borrowed books on subjects that he is looking into. He visits the temple, but meets Mrs. Muroi Miwako, Seishin’s mother, and terminally ill father. It seems he was using the books as research materials for his novels.

September 23, Yoshidae is pronounced dead after fighting for 4 days. The villagers, led by Ikumi Itou, begin to hypothesize that the Kanemasa are the cause of the rising deaths in the village. Elsewhere, Etsuko Gyouda has fallen ill. Ozaki tries a blood transfusion on her, and notices the same bite marks on her. The nurses begin to worry, and one calls up to quit, fearing she would catch the disease.

The following day, Ozaki checks up on Etsuko who is up and running. Maybe the transfusion works better than the iron and vitamin pills he has prescribed. He orders Mrs. Etsuko to visit him the next day, even though it is a Sunday, for him to monitor her progress. The next day comes and leaves, but the patient doesn’t visit. Ozaki calls Mr. Etsuko and learns that the Mrs. is back in bed. Mrs. Etsuko dies the following day. On his way out, Ozaki meets Natsuno who questions him about Megumi’s death. “Was she really dead? Is it not possible that she can come back to life?”

Ozaki laughs at Natsuno’s implication and relies, “That would make her a zombie or a vampire.”

That revelation stops both of them short. Anemia, bite marks, high death rate. This is not an epidemic.

September 27, the Tanaka siblings Kaori and Akira, sneak up to the Kanemasa castle, thinking they saw a few dead villagers entering it. Alas! They are watched by Tatsumi.

Aug. 19, 2010, Ep. 7: Seventh Killing Spirit

Lucky for the children, Natsuno happens to be in the vicinity. He tells the siblings to leave the mansion immediately, as they are being watched. They tell him that they saw Yasuyuki, the lumber factory owner who died, entering the mansion. He shares his suspicion with them of Megumi returning from the dead, calling her and the rest Okiagari, the walking dead. Both Yasuyuki and Megumi met with the lady of the mansion before their demise. Something strange is going on with the occupants of the mansion. Akira is relieved that someone older than them believe their theory too! To be sure, they will exhume Megumi’s grave. Unfortunately for them, Tatsumi overhears this.

The next night, Masao awakens, realizing he is trapped in his burial casket as he remembers his slow death inflicted upon him by the librarian. Every night, like clock work, the librarian showed up to feed on him. Even though his unconscious screamed against him for opening the door, he was hypnotized to do otherwise, until he was sucked dry. Tatsumi frees him, and calls him the okiagari, or the risen. He is dead. Masao tries to speak, but can’t seem to find his voice. Then he realizes he is not breathing! Not everyone can be revived, proven by Hiromi, his nephew’s rotting flesh. Tatsumi convinces Masao that he is “special,” and that he’s their “precious ally.” Only way to die is if he is decapitated, stabbed in the heart, or facing daylight. From now on, he will sleep in the day, and roam the earth at night. Just as a normal human being needs food, he needs human blood to sustain himself. Soon, Masao is thrown into a dark room, his “sanctuary” during daylight hours. In there, is a half-dead child as his first victim. They had purposely weakened him for Masao to eat. He convinces Masao to feed, otherwise when he sleeps, Tatsumi will throw him out into the sun to burn. Unlike him, Tatsumi is a day-walking vampire who doesn’t need human blood to survive.

September 29, another victim shows up at the Ozaki Clinic: it’s Mikiyasu’s mother, Setsuko. The family has met with nothing but tragedy since the death of Nao, Susumu and Mikiyasu. She is left overnight at the clinic for Ozaki to monitor her.

The next day, Tanaka Kaori has second thoughts about exhuming her friend’s body and disturbing her grave. Natsuno provides them with shovels and hoe and begins the dig.

Seishin meets with Ozaki. He discovered that Ishida, the councilman sharing death records with them, is missing together with said records. With his disappearance, no one outside the village knows of the deaths. This is no longer an epidemic. It’s a systemic massacre of humans. What begins as anemia, ends with multiple organ failure that eventually leads to death. Patients with no external injuries actually have insect-like bites on them. This is no coincidence. It is the work of Okiagari or vampires. These humans are hypnotized and used as food source. Ozaki pleads with Seishin, asking for his help since he knows more on the subject matter through his writings. He’s going to use Setsuko as bait to lure the culprit(s) into the open tonight. But he can’t do it alone. He begs for Seishin’s help, but the monk asks for time to think it over. (As if they have time on their side!)

Aug. 26, 2010, Ep. 8: Eight Night

Natsuno together with the Tanaka siblings, Kaori and Akira, exhume the grave of Shimizu Megumi. Kaori isn’t a willing participant. But she spots the present she got for Megumi’s birthday. It was a talisman meant to ward of evil. Natsuno notices they are not the first to dig up her grave. By night fall, it feels like they have been surrounded by the undead. When they finally get to the coffin, they realize that the cover doesn’t have nails to them. It usually has it, right? They open it. An empty coffin greets them. Neither are surprised, but neither want their suspicions to be confirmed. Suddenly, Kaori is caught and dragged into the woods. She puts up a fight, struggling against cold hands. As he tries to drink her blood, she repels him with the Megumi’s gift charm. Natsuno reaches her and is forced to kill the man. In remorse, Natsuno realizes they have to bury him. They move the body, only to realize that the body has no body warmth prior to being killed. The dead man is one of them, the Okiagari, a vampire. They are no different from the humans except for their temperature and non-existent breathing.

They half-heartedly cover the corpse in Megumi’s grave, hoping for the villager adults to find it. It was getting too late to be hanging out in the woods.

Akira and Kaori can’t sleep that night. Neither can Natsuno who realizes he just killed a person, even though he was already dead to begin with. Someone has to do the dirty work. Elsewhere in the forest, the corpse arises. “Those guy…,” he mutters.

October 1, Saturday. On their return the next morning, they discover that the corpse has come back to life and covered the grave back up again. Akira thinks they have all returned to the strange Kanemasa mansion. Their nest. Their hiding area in the morning, while prowling at night. That’s not all together true. There is one guy among them (Tatsumi) that moves around in the day. Natsuno isn’t positively sure that they are vampires they are dealing with. If that is the case, will the usual holy water, crosses and wooden stake work? They need to figure out how to fight them? But how? Kaori suddenly realizes that their neighbor, the late old Mrs. Motohashi just died from the “flu.” They will try to “kill” Mrs. Motohashi before she is revived. They lie in wait for her body to be buried, and hurriedly finish their task before night falls.

Seishin, who just buried Mrs. Motohashi, begins to question himself if Sunako-chan is an okiagari. Her speech, illness and her night prowling makes him suddenly suspicious. Isn’t it strange that as a novelist writing about the paranormal it just only occurs to him that a young girl ambling into the forest at night is odd? This man must be oblivious to his world.

Elsewhere, a young girl, Matsuo Shizuka, dressed in kindergarten uniform and using a Japanese puppet to talk, appears at the Yuuki household. While he has yet to return, she claims to his father that they are of acquaintance. Natsuno’s father is weary of the strange child, who is not only rude and demanding, but extremely odd as she hides behind her life size puppet and talks through it. He questions her motive and where she is from. “Sakaimatsu,” she replies. He has never even heard of the town. He sends her back, as it is very late already, and a little girl shouldn’t be wondering around in the dead of the night. In anger, she hurls her puppet into the house. In the commotion, Natsuno’s mom wonders into the living room. When she realizes it is but a little girl, she tells her husband to let her in. He invites her in, reluctantly, as she ominously asks to wait in Natsuno’s room, even as he tries to stop her. She runs up with a twinkle in her glowing eyes. “Oh yes. My brother will be coming later. Please let him in.”

Death is looming at the doorstep of the Sotoba village, and is materializing at the threshold of Natsuno’s life. Can he stop the inevitable? Can the surviving villagers rally against the living dead?

Sept. 2, 2010, Ep. 9: Ninth Coffin

Seishin breaks. He relents and follows Ozaki back to the clinic to monitor Setsuko and the possibility of a vampire returning for Setsuko. Ozaki hypothesizes that the vampires use a narcotic to prevent the victims from reporting on them, just like when mosquitoes bite their victims. Their hunt bares no fruits that night, but Setsuko’s condition stabilizes. Unfortunately, he’s got no “treatment” to prescribe for Setsuko other than trying to keep her safe. The next morning, Ozaki is greeted by his mother and wife, Kyouko, both noting that the town’s deaths is taking a toll on him. His mother warns him against risking his life for these people. He’s the only Ozaki left. Of course, mother and wife doesn’t get along.

Mother-in-law approved hair flip

Mother-in-law approved hair flip - they look as scary as the vampires themselves

The following night, knowing that Ozaki and Seishin are staying another night by Setsuko’s side, Ritsuko makes sandwiches for them. She tries to bring Taro, the dog, out with her, but even he wouldn’t brave the night with her. Walking through the woods, she bumps into a revived Nao, Setsuko’s daughter-in-law, much to her horror.

Meanwhile, at the clinic, Ozaki begins to wonder what abilities these undead have and what is their kryptonite. Ozaki informs Seishin that he will dissect a vampire if they catch one. Seishin can only nod in horror, but soon, their conversation is cut short when they hear nails scratching against the windows on the second floor. Setsuko awakens and acknowledges to the wind that she is, in fact, “Here.”

The men rush to the window, and see Nao, a vampire now, floating in the air while staring at them. She withdraws, just as Ozaki shouts, “You will never enter this clinic without my permission!”

October 3. Setsuko recuperates over the night and by morning, she remembers dreaming of Nao calling her. It felt so real, but she was afraid. Kyouko, coming for Ozaki, sees Tatsumi lurking outside the clinic, but thinks nothing of it. In fact, she may have invited the blue-haired devil in. That night, as Ozaki and Seishin watches over a recovering Setsuko in the clinic, Ozaki wishes to know “their” weakness and is told by Seishin that they can’t enter without permission from the owner of the house. So, they are safe, until the power goes out. Seishin runs to turn on the generator, while Ozaki remains behind to guard Setsuko. When he reaches the basement, he sees the dead Megumi and the rest standing at outside the clinic, waiting. They can’t come in, unless invited. He turns on the generator.

Did someone say, "Feeding time?"

Did someone say, "Feeding time?"

Setsuko is already compelled by Nao to meet her outside the clinic. Ozaki tries to stop her, but is knocked down by Tatsumi. Tatsumi kidnaps Setsuko, but warns Ozaki that “they” have been ordered not to harm him, yet. His time will come.

As they wait for their meal-ticket, Tatsumi brings them Setsuko and they all have their fill with her. Nao immediately feeds on her, while the rest attack her too. She dies, leaving Ozaki to blame himself for letting her slip through his fingers. Soon, the vampires return “home,” but notice that Megumi is missing. Tatsumi knows where she is.

Watch out Natsuno!

Sept. 9, 2010, Ep. 10: Tenth Mourning

The Kirishikis have laid down their edict: Yuuki Natsuno is done. So is Ozaki Toshio. Tatsumi then orders the waste management team to take out the trash.

A few days earlier, little Shizuka, who gains entrance to the Yuuki’s for the horde, hides out in Natsuno’s room, awaiting his return. The mother surprises Shizuka and herself when she sees the child stalking in the dark in Natsuno’s room. The child chases the mother out. When Natsuno returns, he is told that a child is waiting for him in his room. Alarm bells go off. The sirens blare. With trembling hands, he opens the door to his room, only to be met by an empty room with an agape window. Matsuo Shizuka was an odd child playing with a puppet. Her “brother” was invited too.

I am dead - thanks to you

I am dead - thanks to you two

Lucky for them, Shizuka was called for duty at the Ozaki Clinic instead for Setsuko’s killing. A small reprieve for what lies ahead.

October 2. Natsuno now knows he is being targeted for the dead. He nails talismans and holy objects all around his room. His father, feeling guilty for letting a total stranger into his son’s room tries to mend things by building a chair for him. Upon entering Natsuno’s room, he sees the charms and gets irate at Natsuno’s superstitions. He throws everything out. Elsewhere, Natsuno warns Akira and Kaori not to invite anyone into their house. Invite one, and you may as well have your door swung wide open in invitation. Anyone can be the enemy.

In the wee hours of the morning, Nao’s hunters roam the Ozaki clinic. The good doctor knows too much, and he will be silenced. The minions are hypnotized and ordered on the hit. After this joint, Shizuka will be off to take care of Natsuno with her “brother.” Megumi, however, protests the order on Natusno’s life. If she can’t stop his death, then let her be the one to turn him. Tatsumi immediately stops her. If she disobeys orders, she will be purged.

After their successfully mission at the clinic, the bloodsuckers retreat to their mansion only to realize that Megumi is missing. She has turned back to try to protect Natsuno from his impending attacker. Tatsumi tracks down Megumi.

Oct. 4 12:00 am. Natsuno awaits his attackers and paces his room without the protection of his talismans. He holds a wrench, as if that would protect him from the inevitable. Suddenly, the deafening silence is shattered when someone raps on his window. He stares at the figure, willing it to make its move or leave. It leaves. But it leisurely heads to the main door. The knob turns.

The bastard child

The bastard child

Shit! Who left it unlocked?! It must be dad. When the family first moved into the village, his father tells him that the town has no crimes. So much so, they wouldn’t even need to lock the doors at night. He was born in the city, to college parents. They didn’t feel the marriage paper was necessary as long as they were together. He was given his mother’s name instead, since he is considered a bastard chid. After ripping him away from the city into the boonies, Natsuno vowed to leave the village the moment he gains his freedom. He does not want to die in a place like this.

The sinister figure enters, and as if ashamed of the intrusion, leaves. Instead it returns to Natsuno’s bedroom window again and gently taps it. “Natsuno,” the voice whispers. “It’s me.”

Shocked, Natsuno drops his wrench. He knows that very familiar voice. It is a voice he has become accustomed too, but lost all too soon. His logical self tells him not to open the window. But his fingers will not listen as it slides open the window. He pops his head out, to see with his eyes what his ears hears and his heart knows.

It surprises him when a hand grabs him and pulls him out the window into his yard. He sees an ashen Tohru standing in his garden. Ashamed from being discovered in his state, Tohru takes off into the woods, only to be stopped by Megumi who questions him about his mission.

Tohru had no choice. It was Natsuno, or his siblings Aoi and Tomatsu. Megumi sneers at his naivete. Even if he did not complete his mission, someone else will be ordered to do it. If that is the case, she will be his maker. She takes off towards the Yuuki household. Better it be her than anyone else.

Meanwhile, Natsuno follows Tohru out of the house to search for him, knowing full well this is not longer his friend. Of all people in the village, Tohru didn’t deserve his fate. He was a good person that even a social outcast like Masao liked. Suddenly it occurs to him that the hand that touched him back there was cold. Too late to turn back now, as Tatsumi approaches him and introduces himself as the Kirishiki steward.

Natsuno was the first person to notice “them.” Not discounting his bravery (or stupidity), he should have left the village. But just like Ozaki Toshio, he is becoming a threat that has to be eliminated. It will do “them” no good if the pair started hunting them.

The ultimate bff

The ultimate bff

Knowing he will be killed, or worse, turned into one of them, he decides to put up a good fight. But Megumi corners him. It’s two against one now. Finally, she’s allowed to do as she pleases with him. Before she can even reach him, Natsuno is attacked from behind. His cries are muffled as Tohru sinks his fangs into him. As he passes out, Natsuno remembers the good times they had as friends. He falls.

Sept. 16, 2010, Ep. 11: Eleventh Slaughter

Oct. 4: After Setsuko’s killing, the clinic staff worry for the doc’s mental health, even though he seems unaffected. Soon, Towada the administrative officer quits out of fear, but Ritsuko suspects he may have been attacked by a vampire but brushes it off later as paranoia on her part.

Elsewhere, Kyoko, Ozaki’s wife visits with Tatsumi, after inviting him into the clinic. It seems she has fostered a “relationship” with this man.

Villagers at a cafe soon question Ozaki about the rising death toll in their village. Present are Hirosama (teacher), Tashiro (bookstore owner), Natsuno’s father, and the Cafe owner Hasegawa. Could it be an epidemic? If it’s a secret, they can definitely keep one (not!). He discounts the disease, but doesn’t elaborate on what else it could be. He, however, warns them if any of their family members die from the “illness,” they should be cremated immediately, instead of buried.

Oct. 5: Ozaki, hoping to prove the existence of vampires, digs up Setsuko’s grave in hopes that she rises. Seishin, on the other hand, is against Ozaki disturbing the peace of the dead and worse, experimenting on them. But is this a fight for the living or the dead? Can they afford anymore lives of the villagers?

Later that night at the old church, Seishin meets Sunako. They speak of his newest novel about a man wondering in the wilderness with a dead younger brother following him. He’s a shiki, a dead corpse, not a ghost. The body still has a soul. Sunako comments that the story has biblical implications, like that of Cain and Abel. With that opening, Seishin asks her if she is Abel, as she is about to sink her fangs into him. She leaves, but not before validating his suspicions.

Abel Rejoicing

Abel Rejoicing

Elsewhere, a local shaman, Ikumi Itou, watches the deaths of Sotoba village increase and deduces it as the work of the Okiagari, originating from the Kanemasa mansion residents. If the village leaders: Ozaki Toshio and Muroi Seishin, won’t step in she will.  After a few unsuccessful attempts at convincing and warning the villagers and getting laughed at.

Witch doc being chased away by the liquor store owner

Witch doc being chased away by the liquor store owner

Oct 6: Ikumi goes to warn the Yasumori family that they are being targeted. After Nao, Susumu, Mikiyasu and Setsuko’s death, Tokujiro the family patriach lies deathly ill. Junko, the only one left healthy is warned. Ikumi finally makes head way and gains a small following after that. She accuses Ozaki of trying to cover-up the deaths, but when she confronts the Kirishiki family at Kanemasa mansion, he follows her as a witness. At the mansion, she is stopped by Tatsumi and Kirishiki Seishiro, who walk into the broad daylight. Taken aback by one theory being shot down, Ikumi immediately sticks a talisman on Seishiro, and fails to prove anything once again. She questions him of his wife and daughter’s whereabouts and is told that they have a disease that prevents them from being out in the sun. Unrelenting, she makes Ozaki check Seishiro for signs of death. Both men agree, just to prove Ikumi wrong. Ozaki, upon examination, announces that Seishiro has normal pulse, breathing and puil dilation of a human being. They retreat.

That is some stylish coif

That is some stylish coif!

Later that night, a woman pleads for Ikumi’s aid as her family is attacked by vampires at the Sannoshi Bridge. Despite her daughter’s deterrence, Ikumi goes against her better judgement and follow the woman out. As the stranger leaves, an eerie smile creeps up on her face.

October 14, 2010, Ep. 12: Twelfth Decay

Still lucid, and with enough energy, Natsuno finds the Tanaka siblings, Kaori and Akira, to tell them he was attacked by Tohru. Since he can’t convince them to leave the village, Natsuno warns them to stay away from him. He fears he will not be himself the next time they meet.

Later that night, Tohru shows up at Natsuno’s house for the next feeding, but ironically hesitates to attack him. Natsuno confronts him, asking him why they can’t coexist? For that matter, why can’t he just leave with him? Run away from the village, from all of this, so that they can live in their bromance forever? The hunger is why he can’t leave. If logic doesn’t work, maybe a stake at the heart would. But Natsuno can’t bring himself to stab his dear friend. Instead, he offers his jugular to Tohru.  Tohru pretends to refuse, but promptly attacks him when he can no longer fight the urge.

Megumi is also ordered by Tatsumi to attack Kaori’s father.

In his oblivion, Natsuno’s father unwittingly sends Natsuno to his early grave. As the Tanaka siblings try to protect Natsuno from further harm, they put up protective charms and talismans in his room. However, Natsuno’s father, unwilling to believe that anything is wrong with the village and blind to the happenings, rips off the seals and throws them away. In fact, he opens the window and tells Natsuno he will check on him later as he leaves. Meanwhile, Tohru lies in wait outside, before he makes his final attack.

October 28, 2010, Ep. 13: Thirteenth Tragedy

Weakened and disillusioned from his draining, Natsuno begins to dream of running away from the village. But Toru soon makes his visit, and Natsuno willingly invites him in for a feeding. As he tells Toru that he will never be able to leave the village, a sobbing Toru feeds on his bff. Natsuno soon dies and his mother leaves the village and her “husband.”

Kaori and Akira grieve over the death of their friend as they also make preparations to protect themselves. Of course, Megumi has her fangs set on the Tanaka family, beginning with Mr. Tanaka.

Ozaki treats his newest patient, Mikiyasu’s father, Tokujiro. The patient confirms Ozaki’s  suspicion that Nao, the daughter-in-law, is visiting him. Ozaki tries to persuade Toshio to remain in the clinic, under his surveillance and care, but the elder man refuses. Later, the good doctor learns from his mother that his wife, Kyoko has collapsed. Destruction has struck home. Rushing to her side, he realizes that she too has been attacked by the vampires. She dies, but Ozaki preserve her corpse with ice to prevent her from turning.

Elsewhere, Seishin’s father, Muroi Shinmei who is paralyzed from a stroke, insists on visiting an old friend Tokujiro. During the visit, the two friends say nothing at all to each other. In their silence, Seishin suspects that his father knows of the okiagari when he starts asking about the illness eating away at the village.

Meanwhile, the aids and monks at the temple learn that a new funeral home and clinic have been opened.

November 4, 2010, Ep. 14: Fourteenth Death

The spiteful Megumi visits Kaori at dusk only to tell her, her father is dead. The Tanaka family calls the newly established Ebuchi clinic for help. The doctor, an okiagari, gets invited in unwittingly.

Natsuno supposedly doesn’t turn, and is cremated. Villagers who have gone missing are used as a food source for those newly risen but are still too weak to hunt for themselves.

Muroi Shinmei, Seishin’s father, pens a letter of introduction to the Kirishikis. Seishin sees this as his father acknowledging that family as the cause of the village’s deaths.

The dead Kyoko soon revives as an okiagari. Ozaki then uses her as a lab rat to find ways to repel her bunch. He discovers that they are afraid of religious icons, but do heal very quickly from injuries. To vanquish them, they would have to stop the blood: beheading or ripping off the heart. With that, he stakes his wife as Seishin walks in to witness the blood bath.

November 11, 2010, Ep. 15: Fifteenth Deceit

Appalled by the scene before him, Seishin walks out on Ozaki. The doctor turns to the patrons of the bistro for assistance, but the establishment is closed. Slowly, but surely, everything “human” in the village is replaced with the living dead. Even the funeral home is taken over, to enable an easier switch of coffins to await the resurrection of the dead. The town office clerks are replaced by workers who can only work at night. Confronting them, Ozaki is warned by Kirishiki Chizuru that his time is running out.

During Kyoko’s funeral, Nurse Isaki sees Ozaki’s cold reactions to his wife and resigns. Outside the Ozaki clinic, a newly revived Natsuno visits Ozaki.

“Do you still think Megumi is dead?” Natsuno questions Ozaki. Before leaving, Natsuno warns the doctor that “he is not alone.”

November 18, 2010, Ep. 16: Sixteenth Skull

Kirishiki Seishirou catches a remiss and a contrite Toru leaving flowers for Natsuno. However, even worse is the summon from Sunako. An apprehensive Toru visits the 13-year-old Kirishiki. She begins by telling him she understands his feelings after killing his friend. But it is a necessary evil.  There once was a girl (herself) who after becoming a Shiki was hidden away in a shed but brought a maiden every night for food. One such night, she escapes the shed only to discover that her own family has moved away. She goes in search for her family, but realizes they have most likely died from old age.

Meanwhile, Nao is furious that none of her family has risen. She vows to kill the other happy families around her.

Elsewhere, the recently resurrected Tanaka (father to Kaori and Akira) blames Megumi for turning him. In anger, she tells him to get his own food starting that night. His own family is the first victim. Shocked and unwilling, he vows never to do such deeds. But Megumi warns him that if he doesn’t attack them, the rest of the pack will. Forced to move against his family, Tanaka visits his home but is not permitted entrance. Love, the dog, begins alerting the family. His wife sees her risen husband and is utterly terrified, but manages to calmly tell him that this is no longer his home. In the end, Tanaka feeds on her. The children soon finds out about this.

In retaliation, Akira decides to attack the Shikis, and orders Kaori to fashion as many wooden stakes as possible. He learns that “someone” has moved into an empty house and deduces that that must be a hideout. He goes in, blindly waving his stake, and stumbles upon a sleeping Shiki. He is about to stake him, but Tatsumi stops him and knocks him out. When he awakens, he is bound, gagged and set before the slumbering zombie.

Natsuno finally seeks out Ozaki during daylight. There is a chance of foiling the Kirishiki’s plans of a “Shiki Town.” All shikis must be destroyed. Him included.

November 25, 2010, Ep. 17: Seventeenth Killing Spirit

December 2, 2010, Ep. 18: Eighteenth Death

Tatsumi pays a visit to Natsuno’s father. The boy’s half-crazed father stabs him upon opening the door, afraid at what could be waiting on the other side of the door. Speaking to Natsuno, Tatsumi reveals that Natsuno has turned into a jinrou, werewolf, a rare shiki, which Tatsumi is also one. He also shares that Akira has disappeared and forces Natsuno to join them or be killed.

Ritsuko is revived as a shiki.

Ozaki struggles for strength after bitten by Kirishiki Chizuru. He later takes her to the Kagura festival, where she is trapped by the villagers, bent on exposing her as a shiki. The villagers try to kill her, but their plans are foiled by a barging Seishirou and Atsuchi. However, Atsuchi’s father chases them away, and Chizuru finds herself once again trapped by the villagers.

December 9, 2010, Ep. 19: Nineteenth Coffin

Megumi’s father drives a stake through Chizuru’s heart, to avenge his dead daughter. Ozaki then proceeds to tell the villagers about the shikis and ways to exterminate them.

On a “demon cleansing” vengeance, the villagers knock on every door, search for new occupants.

At the death of her “mother,” Sunako orders Tatsumi to eradicate the root of their problem: Ozaki and then finish off the villagers.

December 16, 2010, Ep. 20: Twentieth Mourning

December 23, 2010, Ep. 21: Twnty-First Slaughter

As the villagers proceed with their annihilation of the shikis, Sunako begin to fear for her life. Tatsumi and Seishin come up with a plan to save the little girl, by hiding her in his temple. However, the crazed mob tries to enter, while his mother and friends try to stop them but end up dead instead. Through the chaos, Seishin and Sunako manage to escape. They are, however, trailed by the angry mob.

December 30, 2010, Ep. 22: The Final Hunt

Megumi is found and suffer a horrible death. The village goes up in flames as the remaining survivors try to escape their fiery deaths. They hide the dead shikis, so that help from nearby town will not see and come to know the truth. The flames finally drive the villagers away, leaving the town beyond salvation. Was this fight for naught?

Elsewhere, Natsuno blows himself up alongside Tatsumi and other shikis.

The escaping Sunako hides in a church with a Shiki-turned Seishin. She laments that God has forsaken her, and thus gives up life. Seishin, however, convinces her to continue living as her faith in God never waivered. The two finally escape the village.

 

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