Hitoshiki Zerozaki (零崎 人識 Zerozaki Hitoshiki), also known as Human Failure (人間失格, Ningen Shikkaku), or No Longer Human in the Vertical English translation, formerly Toshiki Migiwame (汀目 俊希, Migiwame Toshiki), is a member of the Zerozaki Clan and the serial killer of the Kyoto serial murder case.
Hitoshiki is eccentric to the point he thinks of killing as the most normal thing in the world. He calls himself a brat and says everyone was once a brat. When he isn't murdering anyone, Hitoshiki has a casual personality and manner of speaking, traits which go well with his appearance, although he is quite intelligent and well-read. He is almost always seen wearing a smile, an exception to this being when he interacts with Izumu Niounomiya.
I describes Hitoshiki is "the embodiment of a whim", as he is always seeking to change. He says that he likes humans, for no reason other than the fact that if he didn't say he likes humans, he would grow to hate them. Hitoshiki is described as the mirror image of I, and what I would become if he did not hold back. He is what Shiogi Hagihara would describe as an "Aimless Equation". His catchphrase is "What a riot!", a counterpart to "Nonsense.", which is I's catchphrase.
Although Hitoshiki is a member of the Zerozaki family, he only considers Soushiki as true family, and so it takes him a while to warm up to Iori Mutou. Although he doesn't show it, he cares a lot for his brother. Although he doesn't often show it, he does have some respect for Kishishiki Zerozaki.
As Hitoshiki, he has a tattoo on the right side of his face, white dyed hair tied up, three earrings on the right ear, and one cellphone strap on the left ear. He is about 150cm tall. He always wears a vest full of knives, and underneath he wears a black shirt and red hoodie. He also wears grey camo shorts and black military boots.
He is also seen with his white hair left untied, also wearing a black trenchcoat with a red belt, black pants and boots, as well as his fingerless gloves.
As Toshiki, he has his natural black hair and doesn't tie it. He has his signature face tattoo, but doesn't have his earrings. He wears a simple black school uniform with red high-lights, under which he wears a white shirt.
Hitoshiki was born into the Zerozaki Clan, family of unreasonable serial killers gathered by their own thirst for blood rather than blood relationships. Hitoshiki was born to two of these members, being the only pure-blooded Zerozaki. He was raised mostly by his older brother, Soushiki Zerozaki. During his childhood, he went to middle school under the name Toshiki Migiwame, however after the slaughtering of his entire class by Izumu, he dropped out. He has grown to become a murderer who slaughtered more than a dozen people in Kyoto in just a few days.
Soushiki Zerozaki's Human ExperimentEdit
After he killed Yumiya Sawarabi, the remaining Sawarabi brothers started to hunt down the Zerozaki in an effort to get their revenge on him.
When he entered Iori Mutou's town, he immediately got attacked by Kujika Hanamaki, who tried to kill him in order to save Iori from the Sawarabi, but easily defeated him with his newly learned Zig Zag String Technique. Then, he visited Iori's school, and discovered Jion Tsuge's corpse, hidden by one of Tokei Tokinomiya's barriers. He immediately understood the situation from the state of the corpse.
Later, he showed up in the forest where the Sawarabi kidnapped Iori, and killed Naguma Sawarabi. Then he showed up to the place where Iori and Soushiki were fighting Hawatari Sawarabi, and helped them defeat him. After that, Soushiki finally passed away from his wound, and his two siblings talked about him for a while.
Later, Hitoshiki and Iori were riding a train, and Hitoshiki explained to Iori about his meeting with I and about Jun Aikawa following him. At that moment, she showed up and stopped the train with her bare hands, and faced the two. Hitoshiki prepared himself to fight her, and Iori spoke her new name for the first time, Maiori Zerozaki.
Kishishiki Zerozaki's Human KnockEdit
Hitoshiki, at this point in time still in middle school, is by his big brother Soushiki to assist Seamless Pious Kishishiki Zerozaki with his job, in order to gain "field experience". He drags his companion to a restaurant and uses his money to buy a giant parfait. There, the two speak about the job, and Kishishiki tells him that his role is to kill every person in the apartment where the targets are located, in order to cover the Zerozaki's traces. Hitoshiki is a little put off by this, but after his superior tells him that he should be willing to do anything for the family, Hitoshiki accepts.
After arriving at the building on Kishishiki's motorbike, Hitoshiki enters first, with Kishishiki following after five minutes, as he doesn't want to get caught up in the pure-blooded Zerozaki's "indiscriminate carpet-bombing". When Hitoshiki meets up again with his partener again, having finished his killing, he is shot at by Shiogi Hagihara, and Kishishiki kicks him out of the bullet's way, saving him. After that, the the two hide behind a wall, in order to save themselves from the assassin sent after them.
After some time spent staying hidden behind the wall, having entered a stalemate, Shiogi calls Tamamo Saijou to go in the same building the two killers are in, so she can draw them in her field of vision. Because of this, Kishishiki initially panics, but then Hitoshiki sits up and goes to handle the situation instead, to which Kishishiki shows concern. Hitoshiki starts fighting with Tamamo, both occasionally using the remaining corpses in the room as sheilds. Eventually, Shiogi gets ready to shoot Hitoshiki, but the boy can feel her killing intent and manages to deflect the bullets with his knives, much to the surprise of Kishishiki.
Seeing that, Kishishiki is initially stunned, but after seeing Hitoshiki fight and remembering the boy's big brother, he sits up as well, and uses Praise of Folly to back up his partener. Even while sweating buckets, Kishishiki hits Shiogi's shots back like baseballs with the solid lead bat. Seeing that, Hitoshiki regains his confidence, and pours all his attention towards defeating Tamamo, and easily does so. Seeing the two Zerozakis work together, Shiogi figures that her plan can no longer work, and contacts them by using Tamamo's radio. Kishishiki initially responds, but Hitoshiki snatches the radio out of the older man's hands, and angrily screams at Shiogi, swearing that he will kill her and the one who hired her for toying with them. Kishishiki is very surprised by the boy, as he had never seen him angry before.
After the two enemies' conversation, Hitoshiki crushes the radio in his hands. After that, he returns to normal demeanor and lets Tamamo escape, saying that he just remembered he had homework to do, while playing with Kishishiki's wrecked weapon. The admiral responds by snatching it back, and telling the young man not to touch it. Then, he asks him if he likes killing, to which Hitoshiki says he finds it boring.
Strangulation Romanticist Edit
Hitoshiki starts following I with the intent to make him a victim of his killings. I notices him, and leads him under a bridge, where they face off. Hitoshiki almost kills him, trying to stab him, but I has his fingers ready to gouge out his eyes. Hitoshiki stops his attack, and introduces himself to I. After that, they spend the entire night talking, and become friends of some kind.
Later, the two meet up again at karaoke place, and after talking some more, they leave for Tomoe Emoto's apartment building. After they break in using Hitoshiki's knife, they investigate the apartment. When they are done, they go on their different ways without saying goodbye to each other.
The next time the two meet, Hitoshiki saves I's life from Muimi Atemiya. After Hitoshiki defeats Atemiya, I faints. When he wakes up, he is inside his apartment building next to Hitoshiki, who explains that he brought I there and, with the help of Miiko Asano, treated his wounds. After talking for a bit, Hitoshiki leaves.
In an effort to stop the killings, Jun Aikawa was hired by the police. After prying some information out of I, she confronts Hitoshiki. After fighting for a while, he runs away from Aikawa, figuring that he's no match for her.
The last time Hitoshiki and I meet, the two go to Atemiya's apartment to wrap up the incident. Hitoshiki waits outside, and after I comes out, Hitoshiki notices his serious injuries, and the two go to the hospital. On the way, I explains the mystery. After arriving at the gate of the hospital, the two realize that this will probably be the last time they meet, and spend the next two hours just talking about nonsense. Hitoshiki asks I about a place where he will never go, and I responds with "Houston". Hitoshiki tells him that he will go there.
In the airport, he and Aikawa meet, and come to the agreement that if Hitoshiki stops killing, Aikawa will not follow him anymore. Hitoshiki agrees, and tells Aikawa about I's solution to the mystery.
Knives: Hitoshiki wields specially made knives, crafted by the legendary blacksmith Zukin Furuyari the 11th. They are slick, and have the secondary function of lockpicking, which impressed I so much that he asked Hitoshiki to give him one of them.
Zerozaki Killing Mentality: Like the other members of the family, Hitoshiki is a natural-born killer, getting sudden urges to kill the people he meets, and has improved physical capability.
Knife Expert: Hitoshiki is masterful at using knives, being able to hold his own against even Jun Aikawa.
Mirror Image: While Hitoshiki is way stronger than him, he can never win in a fight to I, as they are so alike that they can both instantly read each other's movements. At the same time, they are also opposite counter-parts.
- Hitoshiki's first name can be translated to "knowing humans" (人, Hito = Human; 崎, Shiki = Know).
- Toshiki, his alias, can be translated to "phenomenal genius" (俊, Toshi = Genius, Excellence; 希, Ki = Rare, Few, Phenomenal).
- Migiwame, his alias's last name, is written with the characters for "shore" and "eye" (汀, Migiwa = Shore, Water's Edge, Bank; 目, Me = Eye, Look).
- In the first episode of the live-action adaptation of Okitegami Kyouko no Biboroku, another light novel series written by Nisioisin, in the house of a manga artist in the story, a poster with art from the manga adaptation of the second Ningen novel, featuring Hitoshiki. Kishishiki and Soushiki Zerozaki, can be seen on a wall.
- Hitoshiki's nickname, Human Failure, is a reference to Osamu Dazai's novel, No Longer Human.