Dead Man's Questions (デッドマンズQ Deddo Manzu Q) is a short story / one-shot by Hirohiko Araki originally published in Allman magazine issues 12-14, in 1999.
The story follows the day-to-day life of a vagabond spirit trying to find happiness by performing assassination requests.
The protagonist is described as a vagabond spirit who is unaware of his life when he was alive. As a Ghost trapped in the living world after his death, he works for a monk, doing the "dirty work" of killing targets she gives him in exchange for money. He believes that, by making this job his purpose to live, he might find happiness. For one of his contracts, he is sent to kill an on-the-run child murderer hiding out in an apartment with his significant other. After a convoluted attempt to enter the apartment due to the rules of being a ghost, the target is eliminated, at which point the protagonist reveals his name to be Yoshikage Kira.
On another mission, he is sent to a soldier's mansion that turned into a spirit to find out the reason behind the deaths of people around the area. He is surprised to see even objects can become spirits and wishes to live in the mansion, as he can not only manipulate objects, but feel them, as they are spirits just like him. Enthusiastic and finally finding happiness, Kira investigates the entire mansion, including the various spiritual books, CDs and fire within it. He comes across many suspicious-looking eggs and touches some of them. The eggs crack open and releases creatures revealed to be Cleansers. One of them enters inside Kira's arm and begins to eat him from the inside, forcing him to cut his arm off as the creature climbs through his entire body. Kira then comes to the conclusion that they are cleansers of spirits and the mansion was a nest of its eggs. They try to cleanse him because he touched their eggs, but he luckily enters the painting of a soldier and uses the gun in it to kill the creatures. Kira escapes the mansion and goes to investigate the information the monk gave him, stating that if he found any errors, he would make sure she finds out the credibility of the nether realm personally. He then wonders if her arm would stick in place of his lost one.
|“||This is a work where I drew a character who longs for the peace of his heart even after death, and who continues to grow mentally. This character is the greatest adversary in "JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Part 4", a dead murderer. In the world of life after death, if the spirit lives on, it would not be a world where anything goes, but where there are "rules", just like this world. The ghost should go through the same amount hardships as we do, if not more. That was the idea that sparked this story. But drawing this character who couldn't listen to the music he loved so much, it kind of made me cry.||”|
- Araki hid the fact that the main character was Kira until the very end of first chapter, as he didn't want core fans to read through the story with the image of Kira in mind.
- The outfit worn by Kira in Dead Man's Questions is available as a costume for Kosaku-Kira awarded for completing the DLC mission in Eyes of Heaven, and changes Kosaku-Kira's name to 'Dead Man's Q Kira'.
|Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan|
|Under Execution Under Jailbreak|
|Earlier works by Araki|
|Other short stories|