I'm... slightly disturbed by this. Just warning you. Akito is very... hm, I suppose one word could be 'innocent'? No... indignant? Um... She's just generally a self-righteous lunatic, even in the middle of something extremely and unequivocally bad.

I am having an odd day.

I have somehow been given the strong impression that someone tried to rape me.

At breakfast, I was managing to keep some few spoonfuls of cereal down but not, as I quickly discovered, copious and moderately important-looking amounts of blood.

So I went and found Hatori. He's always fixed me before.

But he didn't fix me this time. He said something about an emergency and not having the necessary equipment and a hospital.

I couldn't hear very well. It's interesting, the way that blood loss induces actually spectacular headaches.

Then, I was bundled into a car and Hatori was driving and I watched the sky. It was only when there were wires and tall, blocky buildings and various other visually noisy things whipping past that I realized that we were Outside.

I was Outside. For the first time in at least a year.

I had approximately three minutes to hyperventilate – which I controlled quickly, because who knows what's in Outside air – and generally fear for my life.

And then the hospital and everything was clean and I could focus on that small vomiting-blood-continuously problem.

Which was fine. They sedated me, I fell asleep, I woke up, they told me that my stomach was fixed and not to worry. I'm not sure what my stomach had to do with anything, but then I figured out that there must have been blood in it to make me vomit so much of it. But whatever they did to fix me, I am better now.

And the pain was gone. Did I tell you about the pain? With the blood, the constant pain had migrated to my stomach and focused there. But now the pain was gone. I didn't feel like any part of my was being stabbed by a two-foot needle.

It was mildly pleasant.

I told Hatori, and he said that the pleasantness was from morphine and that it would wear off soon.

Oh good, I think I said, we wouldn't want me dying without my knowledge.

And then Hatori went to retrieve dinner from the Main House, since the food there isn't filthy.

I tried standing. It worked. So did walking. The clothes I had come in with – a useless kimono with a bird pattern, or fish, or something just as purple and stupid – were stained all down the front and therefore useless. I was in something made of paper and crinkly.

I walked five steps before I stumbled and discovered (through myriad abnormal bouncings and shiftings) that I was not, in fact, bound.

And then I felt naked.

I did the only logical thing. I ran.

Hatori wasn't there and the hospital had taken my stupid purple-and-blood kimono and unbound me and I decided that it was not a very good place at all.

I ran and ran until I went through doors and then the most horrible thought struck me.


Pure, bright, burning sunlight. And contaminated air. And disgusting Outsideness creeping up from my bare feet and making me feel numb.

I was Outside.

I ran some more.

As I was passing an alley, a hand grabbed me.

It was a large hand, calloused and dirty and bad and Outside and covering my mouth.

And then I was against a brick wall, wrists together and above my head, and likely bleeding from a hundred different cuts I could feel from the uneven surface. Looking into his face.

An ugly, twisted, Outside, not-my-juunishi face.

The repulsive thing leered. Something about Jesus, whoever that is, and what the hell gender am I?

I said that I'm male with all of the patience that dealing with idiots all my life has taught me. What other gender could I be?

He put his hand on my chest and squeezed hard just to check.

They might not serve any purpose, and there may not be a lot there, but the damn things can still feel. It hurt. And it probably humiliated me, in the part of my mind that I can't let show in real life.

I told him – it – the Outside thing to let me go. I informed him that greater people have burned for less, just for good measure.

He apparently didn't believe me, and the brief encounter with my chest must have been unconvincing, because then his free hand wandered downward and hunted for a place that only Hatori has touched before and then only in his medical exam room and with explanations about why he had to make sure I was healthy there.

I did the only logical thing again.

Just to prove that, yes, thank you very much, I am a boy, I kicked him in a place that must require very insider information to understand the weaknesses of.

He let me go. I ran again.

Back to the hospital, because that was the only place I could think of to go. Maybe Hatori would be there, and he would fix everything.

I got back without further incident and raced in the direction that I only foggily recalled emerging from. It took me five extra minutes to find my room because I started looking one hall too soon.

When I got there, Hatori was talking rather heatedly with a nurse about how could they let a patient fresh out of an operation wander about freely.

I was ready to make a grand entrance, standing in the doorway with a pose in mind. Then, my legs helpfully gave out. I was on the ground, trying to work out why the pain had returned to the back of my head, of all places.

Hatori nearly shoved the nurse from the room and examined me.

I was showing signs of fatigue and stress, he said. I had collapsed from tiredness.

I didn't know that. My body felt fine. Or it felt like it was floating. Disconnected.

I just told him that it was hard to tell what my body was doing, without the pain to tie me to it.

And then he asked about the scrapes on my back.

So I told him about the Outside and how awful and horrible it is and how could men go about investigating genders in public like that, only no, it wasn't in public, it was more of an alleyway and I didn't see a single person glance my way when I was in there…

Out of whatever I said, he gathered enough to explain what rape is.

Thank you, adult masses, for allowing me to get so far in life without being taught such a hugely revolting Outsider custom.

And Hatori asked me if I could remember what the Outsider thing looked like or where I had been.

I must have given him the most ridiculous look because he just shook his head and told me not to think about it.

Good. I plan on never thinking about this day again.

An odd day.

A bad day.

I hate the Outside. Obviously, it hates me back.

At least we have that settled.

And... and... I know that Akito in general is not how a sane person responds to molestation and attempted rape... But she's not exactly sane, per se, is she?