Days ago, they had a skirmish against the “Legion”, and as the armor surrounding the cockpit of the “Undertaker” was cracked, the decision was made to remove the surrounding armor.
It so happened to be right next to the personal mark. Everyone had their specialized personal mark, and there was no template to copy.
And that was the reason.
“…Yes, now done.”
Theo stretched his little body beneath the dyed jumpsuit, and stood up. He had repainted the white armor of Shin’s new “Undertaker” with his personal mark, a headless skeleton with a shovel reached.
This thing’s going to be covered in damages again, and Thus, who had been repeating the same drawing for years, felt a little empty inside. It was his signature work, along with the others’ mark.
Shin, who had been waiting by the side―was chased away by Theo for being a distraction―and walked over to have a look.
Theo still was a little unused to the steel colored military uniform of the Federation, compared to the desert camouflage of the combat uniform he was used to seeing.
“Not bad as always.”
“Hmm, no biggies. I’m just drawing your mark and Lena’s. I just like to draw after all.”
I guess nobody else can draw, so Theo said. Shin seemed to have thought of something, and chuckled
“When we started off, you asked what’s the point of drawing those things, right?”
Ah, Theo smiled wryly. Shin probably was referring to their first encounter in the 86th district.
Back then, their comrades all had their personal marks drawn on.
“Daiya’s supposed to be Black Dog, but it looked like a black hippo. That was bad.”
They barely made out the image of a dog, for Daiya’s personal name was Black Dog.
“Raiden’s Werewolf looked like some dog headed man. Someone forgot to draw Kurena’s rifle scope, and Anju’s somewhat okay, but that looked so childish.”
That’s why I took over drawing duties, so Theo said, for everyone else’s drawing skills were so horrendous.
The “Juggernauts” were coffins for those who died, and their personal marks were a symbolic grave. They promised Shin that he would carry their memories and souls, but Theo wanted to assist with the remaining husks.
Feeling somewhat immersed in his memories, Theo suddenly showed a bitter smile.
“Nobody has the time to draw. Not when we were younger.”
They all suffered, and the childish in the Concentration Camps had no entertainment items for drawing.
“Well, how do I put it, Shin? Your personal mark’s in a tough spot. It’s one thing if it’s good, but if it’s bad, it just looks stupid and funny.”
“Can’t you just be honest and say that it’s too boring?”
“It’s ordinary, but you drew it like it’s some abnormal mission. It’s wrong to call it realistic though. It’s just that it doesn’t seem to have emotions…yep, it looks boring at all.”
Given that Shin himself was right there, Theo found it inappropriate to insult, so he tried to be delicate, yet he could not.
Luckily, Shin was not affected at all―his personality was so twisted that he was numb to such foul words―and so the insults would continue.
“Yours felt like a map or a blueprint rather than a drawing. I don’t think you drew anything, other than when you had to explain the terrain.”
“You got it, huh”
“Ah, was it really for that? ”
It was no wonder it looked like some abnormal mission
The Republic never would give a map of the battlefield, for good or bad.
At this point, the required maps were all provided by the military, so Shin did not have to draw them himself.
Yes, at this point.
Everything had changed. The Federation would issue all the necessities, support, education and entertainment for combat.
They also would have the privilege to be buried after being KIA, and to mourn their comrades.
Theo did not look back at the red eyes as he said so. He looked down at the mark of the headless skeleton he had just drawn.
The crest of the ominous death god was a salvation in the 86th district, but.
“You’re not changing your personal mark? It’s weird for me to say this, but you don’t have to bear it anymore.”
Shin bore various things till this point.
Theo and the others naturally knew what that burden was.
But Shin did not notice the inner, minor turmoil in Theo’s heart, and showed surprise at the sudden words, asking so,
“You hate it?”
“Not that I don’t like to draw this…it just feels a little, ominous.”
After some though, Shin shrugged.
“Maybe. I’ve been using it for six years though, and I don’t have to keep acting. I don’t find it heavy anymore.”
Theo nodded with a wry smile. The conflicted emotions akin to guilt did not fade, but if Shin said so, that was fine.
Shin stared at the personal mark, and then spoke up,
“So anyway, what’s the situation with Lena’s personal mark?”
Hmph, Theo snorted.
“Ahh yeah, I drew it, but I’ll scrap it if anyone complains.”