This is the first light novel in the No.6 series.
Chapter One starts off with Nezumi, who had been shot, hiding in a damp tunnel, bleeding severely. He struggles to keep consciousness.
A typhoon hits No.6, introducing Shion's POV. It's Shion's birthday, September 7, 2013. He opens the window despite his mother telling him not to. There's a faint laugh, which comes from a boy, dripping wet and shoulder-length hair that covers his face. He notices that the intruder's left shoulder is badly bleeding and reaches out to help him, only to be greeted by the intruder pinning Shion by the neck against the wall. After explaining to the intruder that all he wants to do is to treat his wound, the grip loosens. Shion lies to his mother so that he wouldn't be found out.
While using "primitive" techniques to stitch up the intruder's bullet wound, they start talking about the intruder's situation and introduce themselves. The intruder, who is Nezumi, compliments Shion's suturing.
When Nezumi rests to heal, Shion gives him a plaid shirt and hot cocoa. When Nezumi questions "Petri-Dish Elites" and their sense of danger, Shion states that since Nezumi looked like a girl and looked as if he would about to faint, he helped him.
Later, Shion walks into his mother watching the news on a flat-screen, where a newswoman broadcasts a warning to all residents of Chronos about VC103221, who is the VC Shion knows as Nezumi.
Shion's father is revealed as a man who spent a lot of money, indulged in women, and drank enough to be close to an alcoholic, who had once brought cherry cakes in his drunkenness. Two months later, Shion's parents divorce, but his mother still makes cherry cakes.
Shion wonders about the VC chip in Nezumi that was somehow brought out of service.
Shion starts to feel weird while eating dinner, thinking about Nezumi. He tells his mother that it's about the report he was "writing" and takes food into his room for Nezumi to eat. Shion confronts Nezumi's government identity, VC103221. Nezumi doesn't seem too affected, commenting that he must look better in real life. Nezumi confirms that he had disabled his VC chip and doesn't want surgery to take it out.
When Nezumi reminds Shion that he had harbored an escaped VC without reporting it to the Bureau, Shion says that he's aware of that, to which Nezumi grabs his arms and states that if Shion got into trouble because of him, he'd feel guilty. After that ordeal, it's explained that Nezumi was going to be sent to the center of the city, the Moondrop.
Nezumi tells Shion about why he came through his window, about how he heard him scream. Shion gets embarrassed and lunges at Nezumi, to which Nezumi flips Shion onto his back and pinned his arms down to the bed and straddles his legs, pressing him hard into the bed. He then takes the soup spoon and presses the handle against his throat, commenting to his ear that if it were a knife, he'd be dead.
When Shion exclaims that his move earlier was impressive, Nezumi starts to laugh and collapses on top of Shion. Shion snakes his hand up the back of his shirt and notices that he's burning hot. Declining Shion's offer of antibiotics, he comments that living people are warm.
The next morning, Nezumi disappears, along with the plaid shirt, towel, and emergency kit.
An unidentified man sighs as he holds a head of lettuce that he says to be perfect. However, the market sales on his lettuce wasn't selling well. The base of his neck has been itching for a while. He has an unnamed daughter who's average in status. A cleaning robot comes along when the head of lettuce rolls out of his hands and he feels sick. The cleaning robot takes the head of lettuces and puts it in a dust box and then moves away. The man staggers forward, covered in strange spots, and collapses.
Shion was deprived from his elite citizenship when he was exposed as the person who harbored Nezumi and is now working with Yamase at the Park Administration Office. Together, they operate the cleaning robots patrolling the park. The cleaning robot who took the lettuce is identified as Sampo. Yamase notices something off with Sampo's cameras, which is revealed to be the man from earlier, who's now dead.
Shion's filled with questions when the man's body has already completed rigor mortis, which was strange since it was too early for it to take affect. After that thought train, the man's body starts to rot.
After the body is taken by the Security Bureau, Shion explains the entire situation to Safu, to which they both agree that it doesn't seem possible.
Later, it's shown that when he was revealed as the one who harbored the VC, he was stripped of his privileges and wasn't allowed to enroll in the Gifted Curriculum and is taking courses from the Labor Bureau. His interviewer was named Rashi and treated Shion with respect.
When Shion and Safu leave the restaurant, Shion tells Safu about his thoughts of the city, telling her that the city doesn't care if they're humans, and that they only care about how useful they are.
After Safu tells Shion that she'd leave in two days for her exchange, she asks Shion to have sex with her. Shocked by her casual request, Shion tells her that after two years, when she comes back from her exchange, he might consider it. A small mouse then scampers up to Shion's shoulder. When Shion tries to grab it, it runs away. He feels an electric shock from the mouse as if disturbs the crowd's peace. When he sees a pair of grey eyes flash before him, he's reminded of Nezumi.
Shion returns home, soaking wet from the rain. He tells Karan, his mother, about the death in the park.
Shion signs into work to see Yamase with a small woman and wonders if she was Yamase's girlfriend, but Yamase says that it was actually the dead man's wife. They question the age of the husband, whose body is being kept under custody.
While Shion and Yamase discuss death, drink coffee, and monitor the park, Yamase starts feeling strange. Yamase then starts to age rapidly and break out into violent spasms. Shortly after calling for an ambulance, Yamase's body goes still. Shion notices that he looks like the man who had died the day previous. As he studies the body for irregularities, he lets out a muffled cry of horror as he watches a bee wriggle free from Yamase's neck. Shion faints from the shock as the bee flies away.
Shortly after waking, Rashi interrogates Shion about Yamase's death. He feels controlled, as if the words escape his mouth without him thinking about it, answering the questions truthfully. After a bit, Sampo's Indistinguishable Object error pops up. Despite Rashi's objections, he checks on it, only to find that it was a mouse sending a message for Shion to leave immediately.
Before Shion could escape Rashi, the officer tries to arrest Shion at gunpoint, saying the cause is that he sped with a bicycle without a speed-limiter, saying he can arrest Shion for that cause since he doesn't have rights or even qualifies as a citizen.
As Shion shuts down the operating system, a short message from Nezumi stating that he would come to help him and not to panic.
As Rashi ordered Shion to come with him, he said it was a waste, and that since he was a quick to understand, he'd know right away what would happen. Shion is flanked by two Bureau officials as they climb into a battery operated car, to which they are aware that Shion is trying to resist against the City. They reveal that they've been monitoring Shion's actions, which rebel against the City, and it's possible that he'd be tagged as a VC.
Remembering Nezumi's words, he slightly smiles at the thought of his grey eyes.
As Shion starts giving up on all hope of being rescued by Nezumi, Sampo blocks the way. Rashi gets out to check on Sampo, to which Sampo drags Rashi into the forest. Nezumi sends two grey mice into the car, threatening the officers that if they try anything, the bombs implanted in the mice would detonate. When the officers didn't take Shion's cuffs off, the mice made their necks bleed a little bit, making them take the cuffs off and then proceeding to tumble out of the car. Nezumi hijacks the car and hurtles it down full speed. It turns out that Nezumi hadn't placed bombs in the robotic mice and used that statement to scare the officials.
Nezumi gives Shion a superfibre cloth to protect Shion once he crashes the car somewhere. however, before they could kick the door open for escape, the car began to be controlled by remote. Nezumi then proceeds to cover Shion with the cloth and jump out of the car once the car exploded.
Running away, Nezumi ordered Shion to throw his ID card away. A grey mouse then picks up the card to distract the Bureau. Later on, they take a Park Administration truck and speed off. During the ride, Shion notices that Nezumi had gotten taller and Nezumi takes this as him admiring his good looks, and then comments that Shion was taller as well.
After a bit, Nezumi says that he was taller than Shion, but Shion didn't believe it. Nezumi then asks Shion if he had been eating since he was so skinny, and proceeds to say that he wouldn't be able to get naked in front of his lover if he was that skinny. Annoyed, Shion asks how Nezumi would know, and Nezumi confessed that he could've seen him naked at least once. Shion looks at how much Nezumi had changed all these years.
When Nezumi says that Shion can't even move without understanding everything, Shion gets mad and starts questioning Nezumi about the current situation they're in. Nezumi stops the truck and retorts that Shion had better not whine and reminds him that the officials don't care about them as humans. From their parked position, Nezumi decides that they would walk to their destination instead, which would be the Refuse-Derived Fuel factory.
Nezumi grabs Shion's wrist tightly and runs through the deserted and unsupervised facility. They come to a waste disposal river and escape through it.
Before Shion faints from lack oxygen, he's thrown onto dry land at last.
Once they reach the West Block, Shion is informed by Nezumi that the dirty water from the City flows through to the West Block, and he's shocked. He starts to feel a numb spot at the base of his neck and remembers Yamase's death, but chooses to ignore it.
They reach Nezumi's book-filled underground home and Nezumi starts questioning Shion's knowledge compared to four years ago. When Shion threatens to bite Nezumi's nose off, they fall into a pile with books being dropped on them. After fooling around for a while, Shion starts to feel pain from the earlier numb spot. He orders Nezumi to remove it, but since he doesn't have anesthetics, Shion has to get it removed in pain.
As Shion rests from the trauma, Nezumi pets his hair while checking on his status, such as breathing and relaxation. He starts to think about how well Shion would do in the real world, where he was raised for so long in the No. 6 and now has to adapt so quickly in the West Block.
While resting, Shion gets a nightmare about Yamase dragging him down to death. When he wakes up, Nezumi offers him water. Shion notices that his entire torso is bandaged while Nezumi leaves for work. When a little girl says that she sees a snake, Shion strips naked in front of a mirror and realizes that he has a snake scar encircling his body and his hair is white. Nezumi asks if he regrets being alive, to which Shion responds that he didn't want to die.
Nezumi cooks up piping hot soup for Shion and he's grateful.
Later, Nezumi shows Shion the pupae he extracted from his neck, to which Shion identifies it as a parasitic bee. Thinking about the decimation of No. 6, Nezumi starts to howl in laughter, tumbling to his side. Shion gets frantic and pours water on his head, to which Nezumi retaliates harshly. When Shion questions Nezumi's humanity, Nezumi gets mad and closes his fingers around Shion's neck, asking if he could kill someone. Nezumi later says that he's only keeping Shion alive here because he owes him a debt, but can kick him out if wanted.
Nezumi shows Shion his robotic mouse, telling him that he can get almost anywhere with the mouse, saying that it was that mouse that sent information about Shion to Nezumi.
They discuss the parasitic bee's possible origin. Shion offers his blood as a serum, to which Nezumi retaliates, saying that the City will kill him for the blood and dump him as trash. Shion starts crying when Nezumi tells him that one of his rats has been in touch with Karan. Nezumi tells him to stop that, but then Shion tells him that he was talking to the mouse.
When Nezumi suggests that one of the West Block citizens could somehow be Shion's dad, Shion retorts, saying that it's too much like a cheap melodrama. Then they roleplay a bit, with Nezumi being the dad of Shion. Shion jumps into Nezumi arms, saying that it's warm, and reminded of Yamase's cold, dead body.
Seeing a dead paper wasp, Shion is reminded of the parasitic bees and wonders why Nezumi hates the City so much. In connection to the parasitic bees, Nezumi calls the City the biggest parasite, a Parasite City, one that latches onto its host, sucks out all of its nutrients, and devours it whole. He then proceeds to say that if Shion still loves No. 6 while he abhors it, then they would be enemies.
Nezumi refuses to tell Shion his real name, even after promising Shion to tell him if he survived the bee extraction. He heads inside from their outdoor perch. Shion takes one last look at the City, and then joins Nezumi underground.
Light Novel One VS Anime
- Mother warns Shion not to open the window in the light novel, but this doesn't happen in the anime.
- In the light novel, the alarm that goes off is the atmospheric conditions of the room, but it's a security alarm in the anime.
- In the light novel, Nezumi pins Shion to the wall with one hand, but in the anime he uses both.
- Shion's POV in the light novel shows that he's entranced by Nezumi's eyes, but the anime doesn't have Shion mention the eyes.
- In the light novel, Safu isn't introduced until later, so instead of the sweater Shion got from Safu that he gave Nezumi in the anime, he offers Nezumi one of his plaid shirts in the light novel.
- The light novel shows that Nezumi took the shirt, towel, and the emergency kit, whereas in the anime it doesn't show that he took anything but the sweater, and even that's revealed four episodes later.
- The lines, "Break it. Destroy it. Destroy what? Everything. Everything?" are repeated for a while, but the anime doesn't mention it at all.
- In the light novel, Shion starts eating at the table before leaving to his room, but in the anime, he takes the food immediately and goes to his room.
- Nezumi pins Shion down on his back in the light novel while in the anime it's on his stomach.
- Nezumi threatens Shion with the handle of the spoon in the light novel while Nezumi threatens Shion using the bowl of the spoon in the anime.
- Shion feels Nezumi's back for a fever, however, in the anime, Shion feels his hand and then his head to confirm the fever.
- In the light novel, the dead man in the park is introduced and described as a man who created perfect lettuce and has a daughter, but the anime lets him remain anonymous.
- Sampo in the light novel uses his arms, but Sampo in the anime doesn't seem to use its arms.
- In the light novel, Shion's bike is an older model without speed restraints, leading to his arrest since Rashi didn't want to use the actual reason for arresting.
- In the light novel, Shion saw Nezumi's grey eyes as the mouse darted away and that's how he knew it was him. In the anime, Nezumi talks to Shion through the robotic mouse and then the mouse darts away.
- When Shion was arrested, Nezumi talked to him through Sampo in the office in the light novel, but in the anime, no such occurrence happened.
- In the light novel, the City citizens have ID cards. In the anime, they are ID bracelets.
- In the light novel, Shion and Nezumi walk to the waste disposal facility, whereas in the anime, they take the truck all the way.
- To get in the facility, they use Ippo's card in the light novel. In the anime, they crash in with the truck.
- After Shion wakes up from the surgery in the light novel, a little girl who cried out "Snake!" let Shion see for himself. In the anime, Shion found out when he looked at a broken mirror whilst wandering around the room.
- In the light novel, Shion's entire torso was covered in bandages while in the anime, it was only his neck.
- When Shion examines his snake scar in the light novel, he strips naked, whereas in the anime, he goes down only to boxers.
- In the anime, his eyes turns red, but the light novel doesn't add this feature.
- When Nezumi comes back to see Shion after he realizes what he looks like in the light novel, Nezumi offers to dye his hair back and traces his finger along the scar on his chest. In the anime, Nezumi doesn't do that.
- The lines Nezumi use when he making the soup are different in the light novel than the anime. Afterwards, in the light novel, Nezumi describes what's actually in the soup while the anime lets it remain a mystery.
- Shion is first reminded that bees are dormant in the winter when they talk about the parasitic bees originating from the Forest Park in the light novel. In the anime, Shion picks up a dead paper wasp that looks like the bees and is reminded of it.
- If Shion was still alive, Nezumi would tell him his real name, only to never tell him either way in the light novel. In the anime, Nezumi doesn't say that.
(Shion offering the intruder treatment): "I'll treat your wound. You're hurt, aren't you? I'll treat it,"
(Shion making an excuse so he can hide the intruder): "I have a report to write. Can you leave me alone for a bit?"
(Shion after the intruder says that sewing the wound was primitive): "This isn't a hospital. I don't have state-of-the-art facilities, and besides, I think a bullet wound is pretty primitive itself,"
(The intruder when Shion asks why he got shot): "Is it? Instead of a fox, they just happened to be hunting a human. A manhunt. I don't think it's against the law,"
(Shion answering Nezumi when he asks why he saved him): "If you were some big, aggressive man, I would have set the alarm off right then and there. But you were short, and looked like a girl, and was about to fall over. So...So I decided to treat you. And...,"
(Karan talking about Nezumi, who had appeared on TV): "But look at him, he's still so young. A VC...I wonder what he's done,"
(Nezumi talking about the City): "Yup, a toy. And let me tell you something, this city itself is like a toy, too. A cheap toy that's pretty only on the outside,"
(Nezumi, not wanting to feel guilty about Shion getting in trouble): "Do you really? I mean, it's not my problem what happens to you, but if you end up being wiped out because of me, I wouldn't like that.. I'd feel like I did something horrible...,"
(Nezumi counterattacking Shion): "If this was a knife, you would be dead,"
(Sampo holding the lettuce the man dropped): "May I dispose of this as trash?"
(Yamase scanning the dead body through Sampo): "Oxygen, heat emission...zero. No signs of life,"
(Shion confessing to the Security Bureau): "It was because he looked about the same age as me, and he was seriously injured. So I felt sorry for him...,"
(Safu countering Shion's statement about human segregation): "Don't talk about it like that. You don't 'sort' people like you 'sort' garbage and merchandise. People are people. They're humans,"
(Shion talking to his mother about the Forest Park death): "Well, yeah. I've never seen a dead body before,"
(Safu confessing to Shion): "I love you, Shion. More than anyone else,"
(Yamase revealing the woman's identity): "Shion, that lady...she's the wife of yesterday's body,"
(Yamase being taken over by the parasitic bee): "Shion...what's--what's happening to me...?"
(Nezumi's message through Sampo): "Shion. Get out of there. You're in trouble. Get out,"
(Rashi talking about Karan): "Happen? Nothing. She won't be stripped of her citizenship just because her son is a convict,"
(Nezumi threatening the officials): "Take his handcuffs off. And the three of you, get out of the car...Quickly! I'm impatient. Do you want me to set them off?"
(Nezumi's plan for escaping the car): "You're naturally dense, you wouldn't know. It doesn't get any more dangerous when something's gone too well. That's why we're going to dump this thing. When I tell you to, wrap up in that cloth and jump out of the car. I'm gonna crash it,"
(Rashi explaining why Nezumi couldn't control the car anymore): "I won't have you underestimate the Security Bureau. The car you boys are riding is actually an escort cruiser, though you might not have noticed. It's not something you can control so easily,"
(Nezumi's order to Shion as they run away): "Throw your ID card away. Hurry up, there's no time to waste. That thing is only going to be a danger to us,"
(Nezumi, worried about how much Shion is eating): "It's the truth. What have you been eating? You're like a twig. I don't know how you would be able to get naked in front of your lover with a body like that,"
(Shion reacting to Nezumi's grip): "Nezumi, it hurts...I get it, let go. you're gonna break my wrist...I'm not a delicate little boy. I'm different from four years ago,"
(Shion after they reach the West Block): "On the contrary. I could do with a little more exercise. Want me to piggy-back you while I'm at it?"
(Nezumi, seeing Shion interested in his book collection): "Let me guess, you've only read off electronic paper before. and to take another guess, you've probably never read Moliere, Racine, or Shakespeare before. And you probably don't know anything about Chinese classics or the myths of the Aztecs. Then what do you know? What have you studied up until now? Systematic knowledge, front-line technology, how to decode specialized scholarly papers, and what else? You forgot 'how to reject someone when she asks you to have sex and you've only ever thought of her as a friend'. You didn't do a great job at it, though,"
(Nezumi explaining why he saved Shion): "I owe a debt to you. Four years ago, you saved my life. I'm paying back that debt. That's all,"
(Conversation Line Between Shion and Nezumi): "Let go," "Make me little boy," "I'll bite your nose off. Biting noses off is my specialty," "Huh? Wait a second, that's dirty--,"
(Shion, noticing the bee growing from his neck): "My neck...the blister...cut it open...I don't need any...hurry...,"
(Nezumi walking in on Shion naked): "Do you enjoy looking at yourself naked? It appeared just as your fever went down. The affection is only skin-deep, it's not because your veins are engorged. Which means there's no damage to your circulation system. Isn't that nice?...If you don't like it, you can get rid of it. Skin grafting is no big feat in this time and age, right? As for your hair, you can dye it another color. I don't see any problem. But just letting you know...we can do something about your hair, but you won't be able to graft your skin here. We don't have the technology or facilities for that,"
(Shion remembering that bees are dormant in the winter): "Once winter comes, the wasps will cease activity as they enter a dormant stage. The eggs that have been laid already will probably pass the winter as they are...Yeah. And when spring comes, they'll be able to resume activity as an imago. Then they'll hatch all at once,"
(Nezumi retaliating when Shion offers his own blood as a serum): "and then what are you gonna do? Go waltzing into the city's Health Bureau and say 'Please check my blood. and if you like, please make a serum out of it?' That's idiotic. They'll probably suck all your blood out and throw you in the trash with the rest of their organic garbage. Sure, what you're saying is impressive, but are you prepared to risk losing your life for these people?"
(Nezumi complimenting Shion): "you're getting better at your comebacks. But, well, I guess you're right. It's your typical script for a cheap melodrama. A father and son reunite in tears after sixteen years of estrangement,"
(Nezumi when Shion asks for his real name): "Nezumi it is, and Nezumi it shall be. good enough,"