The third installment was better than the first 2. Probably because the characters were already set in place and now, the author was given a chance to explore hidden feelings and give depth to some of the actions and emotions running wild between the characters. I understood Aki a little bit better. One significant scene to which I felt very much connected was when Aki was talking to Mark and remembering his time with Luke. There was so much raw emotion in those lines...
And then there was Sky. Slowly being consumed by his urges yet unable to stop them. Hating himself even as he surrenders. You understand the difficult position he is in, wanting to please Ken but ultimately being selfish in his doings and then loathing himself. It must be hard for him to find balance with such confusing emotions and desires.
And let's not forget Ken. The shy and awkward kid, barely saved from a butcher whorehouse and yet standing up and defending the people around him and displaying amazing qualities and Talents. I do wonder what his Hidden/Key Talent is and what part it will play further along in the story. I just hope he never falls in the hands of Strauss, as he seems the embodiment of all the horrors Ken went through as a child.
There are so many facets to each character and such development between them and the story itself, you could hardly believe it possible in such a short story. And yet, each and everyone is individually represented, a clear presence in the story but with a myriad of connections to everyone else. Their reasons and justifications still partly unknown, leaving the reader to decipher the code and understand them. Amazing writing and fantastic story! Looking forward to the next installment.