In the Kübler-Ross model, there are five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. The model is supposed to apply to most major losses. Stuff like death, breakups, dealing with your parents’ divorce, overcoming addiction. In general, it works. But for Haruka, and she imagines most others like her, the smart ones, the brave ones, there is another stage: revenge.
That’s not the same as anger, revenge. No. Anger is a much simpler concept. An easy emotion to tap into. Primitive. It’s rooted in the limbic system, the amygdala. A banging of the fists and stomping of the feet and overall feeling of ‘I’m mad!’ Anger can be reduced to an emoji, or several with slight variations. Although, they’re usually a little too cute for what’s at the core of that actual emotion, anger. It can be very scary when witnessed.
Revenge is more complicated. More sophisticated. It’s also less scary-looking, almost clinical when carried out. It would take at least two distinct emojis to express properly. More like three. Something to depict a wrongdoing, something to show contemplation, then lastly the victim committing an evil act with a calm, satisfied smile.
A.D. Aliwat (In Limbo)