Prologue

11:23 pm: a time when no one should be walking about the streets. Instead, they should have been in bed, dreaming of fantasies that were almost never to come true. Then one might ask themself what he was doing that night. His tall, scrawny figure was hidden beneath a black trench coat and his long scarlet hair flowed freely behind him. One hand was shoved into the pocket of the coat, seeking warmth in the chilly evening air, while the other was gripped tightly around the handle of a package. A bird cage to be exact, holding a prisoner.

This bird was small for a raven, but he made up for it with his amazing eyes. They were stunning gold and held so much emotion that one could almost know what he was thinking. He watched the man very carefully, searching for any sign of weakness that could be used against him. He was desperate to be set free and continue on his journey.

When the man suddenly stopped, the bird took his eyes off of him for the first time since he was captured and turned his attention to the building in front of them. It appeared to be some sort of warehouse or office, but he could not really tell from the outside. There were many windows on the topmost level, but none on the lower levels and there was only one entrance in the front.

The bird began to squawk and cry, flapping his wings and scratching at the sides of the cage. He was intent on doing whatever it took to keep from finding out what lie on the inside of the building, even if it meant making a distraction.

The man paid no heed to the bird and slowly and silently slipped through the door. The bird continued to fight as the man walked down the dark and empty hallway, the sounds of the bird's cries and the man's footsteps echoing off the walls. They entered a small room and the man sat the cage on a wooden table against the wall.

"Shush, you!" the man growled under his breath. He turned away from the cage and towards another table in the center of the room. This one was made of stone and looked much older than the wooden one. Lying on top of it was a figure, the figure of a person. The man glanced quickly at the body and then left the room.

After he had gone, the bird fell silent, having no need to make noise any more. He then turned his attention towards the body. It was obviously a young girl, probably no older than 16 or 17. He studied it intently for several minutes, then suddenly began to flap its wings and cry out again. He recognized this girl. He had known her, in his first life. This was the very girl he had been searching for before he was captured. The very girl whom he had protected during his life as a human and bird until her death 8 months ago.

Finally, the bird told himself. I've found you, Misuzu. But what… what do these people want with you? What could they possibly expect to get out of you when you have already returned to traveling alone in the sky?