“Yurei” by Anjala Tamang (‘20)

My name is Yurei. I was born in a noble family of Samurai. My dad was the highest ranked leader in the whole of Japan and he served the great Emperor. From my childhood, I was always known as the son of Hashirama. I used to think that I didn’t have my own respect and identity. Ever since then I used to hate my dad. I always wished to show people that I wasn’t just the son of a Samurai, I was a Samurai myself and better than my dad. However, for that, first I had to defeat my own dad. I used to work really hard. One day, I challenged my dad to have a sword fight and if I defeated him, he would have to hand over his rank, status and position as a Samurai to me. Hashirama accepted my challenge.

(The day had finally come when I would finally be known as Yurei. I would finally have my own identity and not the son of Hashirama). The fight went on and on and finally, when Hashirama was on the verge of losing, I tripped and when I got up I knew I had lost. I felt disgraced and weak. I knew I couldn’t defeat him fair and square. He said, “Well done son! In the future, you will be a better Samurai than me.” I said, “Thank you dad! I will work hard to be like you!” Even though I kept smiling at him, from the inside my hatred towards him grew more and I couldn’t take it anymore, so I decided to finish it.

(At midnight, Yurei sneaks in his dad’s room.) I’ve decided to end this hatred and the only way to do this is to kill him because as long as he is alive, no one will ever acknowledge me. I silently entered his room and drew my sword out. When I was about to stab him, my dad woke up. He said, “I knew you would come to kill me. You’ve been a great son, but I think it was my mistake that I never tried to feel how you feel. So, I know I deserve it.” I was shocked when I heard him. He had known that I was plotting to kill him and yet he hadn’t hesitated to be asleep, fearless. Part of me felt really scared and ashamed and I hesitated for a moment, however, my hatred took over and I stabbed him to death. I heard his last goodbye.

Suddenly, everything went dark. I was in total darkness. In that darkness, I saw a bright light. The light spoke to me, it said,”Yurei, even after realizing that your father had known about your desire to kill him, he still didn’t hesitate to act according to your plan. Yet, you killed him! You don’t deserve to be a human!” I woke up in a dark cave. I don’t know how, but I realized that the God himself had punished me when I found that I had turned into an Oni (Japanese demon). I felt very selfish and wished to be dead.