"Whatcha’ laughing at brother!? What’s up with that kid?! Why am I to be said as that?!"
"Ah~ I know I know. Sorry kay just calm down first. Nee, you’re name is Hibiya right. Why are you in a hurry? Can’t you go later?"
Listening to what I said, HIbiya didn’t try to run away, but without covering his hostility on his face he looked at me.
"…….. There’s this girl, perhaps she’s already dead. Someone important to me. I was the only one saved. So I have to save her"
Said Hibiya dismissively. While everyone, held their breath after they heard the boy said that.
Even Momo who was noisy back then, stopped her moves, and opened her mouth as she was surprised.
"W, wait a minute. Dead as in……. as in saying you two were involve in some kind of incident? If that’s the case, it’s better to discuss with the police or the doctor first right. Where are you going alone"
Before I rushed to the hospital, the place where Hibiya fainted, had no sign of a car accident at all. His body has no obvious wounds, from a side viewer’s point of view he simply just fainted due to heatstroke.
That’s what I thought it was.
Yet from what Hibiya said, it’s not just a sudden occurrence, but it’s like being involved in some kind of incident. If that’s the case, he should discuss with the police.
"No matter how I say it, no one will believe it. Oh yeah, if you don’t believe it just ask that guy. He just stood there and watched all the time."
The boy pointed at the guy, the guy started to look anxious and grabbed his shirt tightly.
"Hey, you were there watching all the time weren’t you? If you can’t do anything why don’t you at least explain"
"No, that’s not it! I also wanted to save her…. but.. but.. I had no choice too…..!"
As the guy said, the boy gritted his teeth, using a sharper glare and stared at the guy.
The guy looked down as if he couldn’t take the glare anymore.
The boy softly sighed, once again showed that he wanted to pass the entrance.
"…….. fine. If you can’t do anything I’ll just go by myself. Don’t stop…… me….."
Just when the boy was about to take a step forward, his body suddenly wobbled and slanted in a big scale, and headed to the floor without any defence.
I hurriedly wanted to hold the boy, but the distance was too far away. Even the guy who just showed such shocking actions, as if he felt blur after the boy’s words, his reaction was one time slower than me.
The boy didn’t show any sign of defence, seemed that he was about to fall down like that.
Just when I thought it was too late, Hibiya’s body was likely hanged by some invisible rope, and just stopped in the middle of the air in an upturned pose.
I didn’t immediately know what was going on, but after looking at Momo who lost balance and fell onto the ground, I understood the situation.
"Shintaro, this fella…. it’s better not to send him back to the hospital."
The air around Hibiya suddenly shook and wobbled, at the same time Kido who was wearing her purple parka with her head buried under her hood appeared.
Under the hood with her long hair, Kido’s face showed mixed feelings of surprise and anxiety.
"Nice catch….. Sayy what did you mean by that? It’s obvious that the boy’s condition has worsen. Well it does look like the situation is kinda bad, anyway it’s better to leave him to the doctor or the police right"
"……. no, I’m afraid even the doctor or police is useless. As for this fella’s situation right now, I think the only one who can help is us."
Looking at Hibiya in her hands, Kido said while making an expression as if she bitten something bitter.
What’s happening now, as I thought I walked beside Kido and looked at the boy’s face, in his weakly opened eyes, bloody red gradually seeped out, mixing with the original colour of his pupil.
"Oi, this is………."
"Ahh, I heard what you said, but this situation is pretty troublesome"
Kido said in a way like she remembered something abominable.
The change of the colour of the boy’s pupil, is definitely the characteristic of when Kido and the others use “some kind of power”.
Perhaps what Kido said just now about “even the doctor or police is useless” is because of this. It’s true that facing this kind of extremely unusual symptom, I don’t think that both sides can easily accept it.
"Then, what to do right now….. Is this child okay!?"
"For now we still don’t know what is the child’s power…. If we let him go back it’ll be dangerous. Anyway we should bring him back to the basement first."
Kido’s hand firmly supported Hibiya’s waist, and hugged him properly with his head on her shoulder.
"Alright, Kisaragi. You go tell Kano to space out a bed. Ahh, and if Mary is afraid it’ll be troublesome, please let her stay inside the room with Seto."
((((((((illust kido hugging hibiya ////jealoouuusssss////shot))))))))))))
Kido said to Momo, Momo who was sitting firmly on the ground immediately stood up, and did a salute pose.
"O, okay! Roger that!"
"Haha…. you’re so stiff"
Kido gave a dazed expression, then gave a rare smile. Her eyes were always glaring sharply, but when she smiled it was really warm, and her mothery trait was shown.
"Oh, yes. What’s your name?"
Hugging HIbiya, Kido thought of something and turned to Konoha.
"M, me? ……. Konoha. That’s the name. I think"
Perhaps he didn’t mean it, but as usual the guy used his really slow intonation, and did a sloppy self introduction.
When the guy said his name, my handphone which I was grabbing started to vibrate again, and when I looked at it Ene again showed an angry face and stomped her legs.
"I see, Konoha. From what I heard just now, about the "incident" that happened between you two, I guess we can lend a hand for it. Anyway, we’ll be taking care of this child before he’s stabled. You’re just gonna listen to me, you wanna come with us?"
As Kido said that, Konoha made the most serious face I had ever seen, and deeply shook his head.
"It’s a yes huh. Alright, let’s go…. but I’m kinda hungry now. Should I leave Kano to prepare dinner too….. Hey, Kisaragi. Did you contact Kano?"
"No, I couldn’t call Kano at all so I’m currently calling Seto….. Ah! Hello, I’m Momo!"
I guess Seto picked up the phone, Although she couldn’t see the other side, Momo still stood straightly and spoke.
"Pardon me, there’s something going on here. There’ll be a patient sending to your house, so I was thinking if Kano could spare a bed for…… eh? He’s not in? Uhm….. Okay I understand! Ah, besides that and preparing dinner…….. and also after that please stay inside the room with Mary! Well then goodbye!"
At the last part, her tone went faster, did she even tell Seto the contents properly.
After hanging up the phone, Momo gave a sigh of relief as if she succeeded some strategy.
"Sorry for troubling you Momo. And, did Kano went somewhere else?"
"Ah, yes. He kinda left a message ‘I won’t be back tonight’ and just went away."
"Haa……. This dude is really useless when it comes to this kind of important moment…."
Remembering that Ene said the exact same thing before, my heart started to cramp.
Speaking of it Kano going out at this kind of time, I wonder what’s he up to. As for his aloof attitude, he might has a lot of friends. So he’s going for a night with friends huh. Dammit…….. he’s even younger than me…..
"Let’s go then. From here to there might not be far away, we gotta be faster."
Kido’s eyes revealed a red light again. I guess she used it because of Momo.
I still don’t understand her power, but with her power no one can see us right now, that’s kinda unbelievable.
After the entrance, everybody moved forward and followed Kido closely, suddenly my phone vibrated quieter than usual.
"Ah? What is it"
Looking at the screen, Ene was different than back then as she stood there and made a gloomy expression like she was thinking about something.
"Uhm….. that, shouldn’t we go home faster? With lil sis. I just feel, a bit worried. As if something bad is gonna happen……"
Rarely, Ene negatively said as she awkwardly rubbed her shirt and formed creases on it.
Usually this brat will say things like “Jump over it! Master!” if there’s a fire ring in front, but there’s something really wrong with her today.
"Haa? If to say it from the start it was actually your fault. Hey although I really wanna go home too…….."
"if, If that’s the case then……!"
"Mm~hmm I’m a bit concerned about the child’s case, and Momo doesn’t seem that she wanna go home too. Anyway I don’t think that leader will easily agree to let me go"
"I, I see…….."
Ene looked powerless and depressed. As I was thinking what was she trying to say, I suddenly realised something.
"Ah, don’t tell me you…!"
"Eh eh eh??!! No! Of course nooo!! Ene is still Ene okay?! I’m not what you think! Master you’re really nasty seriously……."
"You’re worried that it’ll ran out of battery?"
Ene said a lot of weird things, but when I questioned her she just opened her mouth for nothing, and stunned.
Then suddenly it changed into a smile, and she clumsily waved her hands.
"……..Ah, ah~ charge battery, yes it is that~! Once the battery reduces I’ll become tired how frustrating!"
"Uhuh! It’s just what I thought! Hey I’ll charge you up when we’re back in the basement, cheer up kay"
So the problem is to charge the battery huh. Maybe because it wasted a lot when we were in the amusement park, the screen showed that the battery power remaining had reduced a lot.
I don’t know what kind of condition can make her active inside, but if all her weird actions can recover after I charge the battery, I’ll be relieved.
If I don’t care about her and just let her do something even weirder, I wouldn’t stand it.
"Ahaha……. haa. Speaking of I kinda think that master…. has changed a lil"
"Ah? Really? I’m not sure for myself….."
"Looks like you had a lot of fun. Isn’t it great, making friends"
"Haa? Are those people friends. I just feel that I’ve been led by the nose by them………"
I kinda felt defended if it were to say I call them as friends even if we just met for one day.
Yet it’s true, they can get along pretty well.
They’ll lend a hand for a normal boy, and even try to solve his problems, for this era they’re really good people.
"Isn’t that great. Master can even get along with people who are leading you by the nose"
Ene gave a gentle but lonely smile.
Suddenly, a smile that I had really seen before unexpectedly passed through my brain. A smile that I once lost. Also a smile that was always kept deep inside somewhere in my brain.
"I guess it really is"
Not as if I want to forget it, I locked the smile somewhere, somewhere I had always locked into it.
"Of course it’s that! Ah, by the way I’ve always thought that I’m a really tough girl, whaddaya think? Are ya obsessed with me huh?"
"Nono, first of all are you really in the "GIRL" category?"
"EH EHHH?!!! You’re too much master!! Aren’t I a super girl!! Young and beautiful right!!"
Facing Ene who once again couldn’t stop talking like usual, I should quickly go back soon, and charge the battery for her, as I thought about that I slightly speeded up my pace.
In the shaking train, from the outside of the slightly ajar window, blew in a slightly cold yet with a comfortable temperature strong wind.
Gazing the scenery from the window, it wasn’t just groups of mountains back then, but it’s now packed by grey hard objects as if they advocated the development of civilisation.
"Yeaaaa… This is great. Kinda."
I couldn’t resist from raising my mouth. Well it couldn’t be blamed, that I had never experience such an exciting summer hols before.
This world that’s beyond the village I lived in, was way greater and charming than what I had expected.
Those sceneries that could only be seen on the TV, at the other side of the window, like they were neatly placed in a cupboard, kept on inciting my curiosity.
And the most important thing is, the existence that makes my heart pumped so much, is just in front of me now.
"Gross. What’s so good about this scenery. Is there something wrong with your head?"
"Eheheh. Because don’t you think this is exciting? UWAHH! That building is SO BIG! Hey Hiyori did you see that?!"
"Ah~ annoying just annoying. I once had looked forward about that, but now I’m already sick of looking at those kind of things."
At the opposite side of the seat, Hiyori used her cool attitude as usual, and looked out at the window like me.
Ahh, I feel like taking a photo of this scene.
Before leaving, I kneel down and begged and finally borrowed this SLR camera of soul from my father.
I kinda heard that the little thing under the seat whispering “hey it’s my showtime now right?”, no matter what kind of moment as long as it’s Hiyori it’ll be a perfect picture.
"I’m really looking forward to it. Anyway I have SOOO many places I would like to go. Then! Where shall we start first!"
"Start first huh….. Isn’t it good to just shop around the streets? Since this scenery makes you so excited I guess you’ll be satisfied just by that."
Without looking at me at all, and just looked at the “boring” scenery she just mentioned, Hiyori casually suggested that.
"That, that means we’re going together…?"
"Huh? Why should I go with you? When I’m not going out you can just go out on your own"
And as usual I couldn’t incite Hiyori’s interest, the dialogue just ended like that.
After the night talking with Hiyori on the phone, I had completely misunderstood that we have a close relationship now, till the next day at the school corridor when I greeted her “Good Morning! Today’s weather is great this is really great!” and got ignored, and became a laughing stock for the crowd, I finally realised my own standpoint.
That’s right, Hiyori didn’t specially looked up at me or something, but it’s just and only because the reason “seems that you can be easily assigned”, therefore invited me to a trip with her during the summer hols.
And just because of that, of course till now I had never have a conversation with her in school before. Those moments before leaving for today, the only way to communicate with Hiyori was just irregular phone calls by her, and that was the cruel reality.
Of course, to prevent the phone calls from Hiyori from being dashed, I started to continuously sit at my house corridor and waited.
Even if there was one week she didn’t call at all, but there was times where she called twice in a day.
Although all the phone calls are about transactional contents, yet those dialogues were deeply marked inside my brain, that once I close my eyes I could even memorise it all.
That quiet battle was tough and hard, if it was to precisely described it’d be a really long story, and also if I say that even my mom who first was worried about me, yet in the end she made some tea sent me water and said “it’s been tough for you” these striving words, can anyone even understand that.
That’s right, to let that kind of parent to accept it, I also wasted a lot of effort in it.
The first night when I told my father “I wanna go to the town during summer hols”, I was locked outside the house, trembling among the howling sounds of the wild dogs, and deeply felt the taste of creepiness. And so I thought “This can’t be it, I have to find a decent reason”, and thought of “attending summer hols tuition classes” this extremely clever reason, once again I took the challenge with my parents.
However my parents said “If you wanna study then do it at home” and again I was thrown to the wild, and kindly accepted the severe test by the raccoons.
Later on I brainstormed, researched for a lot of info and finally, I came up with this ultimate-to-the-max reason, “In the whole Japan the one and only, the school that I can learn about India’s tradition which I don’t really know much about it, and because the books are only sold there, therefore I had to go”.
The last time I negotiate with my parents was until midnight 3 o’clock, and to convince my stubborn father, I even said “I CAN’T SEE ANYTHING NOW BESIDES INDIA” and “IF YOU WANNA STOP ME THEN YOU’LL HAVE TO ELIMINATE THE ENTIRE INDIA FIRST” and after all my ridiculous-to-the-max words my father left a sentence “It’s me who educated you the wrong way”, and FINALLY agreed to let me go to the town.
So now, I’m currently “a boy who has an unusual curiosity towards investigating the traditions in India which he does not understand at all”, with a status of half severed-relationship with my parents, I exist in here now.
I myself was the one who started all these downright low self-esteem nonsense, but the one who made me surprised was Hiyori.
Yet it’s too embarrassing if I say that I did all these things just because of Hiyori, so I kinda gave a mentality that I might be looked down by her, and announced to her “Just right that from long ago I have the interest to learn India traditions from a professional society, so my parents agreed too” but Hiyori said “That’s good. I like investigating stuffs too.” that was by far the best response I had from her.
She really has a hobby at this kind of unexpected stuff huh. For all of my sacrifice till now, that quote had changed my life and it’s already enough. Of course I recorded the part where she said “I like”, and will keep inside the completed “Voiced Hiyori” which will be guarding my room for me when I’m not in during this period.
Drowning in my memories, without knowing when, the train was close to the huge platform.
The platform was crowded, as if an event was held there.
"Ah, faster, we gotta get down by the next stop, Hibiya"
"Eh?! Ah, yeah!"
I replied, and stood up from my seat.
After I finally moved down Hiyori’s massive luggage from the luggage holder above the seats, I carried my backpack which was obviously smaller compared to the luggage, and went into a ready status.
"Alright! We’re getting down any minute!"
The train suddenly slowed down its speed, an inertia force suddenly came from my foot.
To not fall down I tried to stand firmly, but when the train stopped the inertia immediately vanished, and my body suddenly fell down to the opposite side.
"Huh, what are you doing. Faster, we’re going now"
Hiyori looked at me and sighed, then neatly stood up and rushed towards the door.
"U-uwahh wait…. wait for me!"
I hurriedly dragged Hiyori’s luggage, and walked towards the door.
From the moment the door opened till I got down the world I saw, countless crowds were mixed together, releasing a pressure as if I take a gasp it’ll squash me to death.
Hiyori relaxingly rushed to the platform, while I was trying my best to chase up with her.
As I was drawing along the rough yellow lines on the floor using the wheels of the luggage, I finally went up the escalator, at that moment I was breathing quite rapidly.
"Nee…….. Hiyori. Is there some kind of event today……?"
"Hmm~? Nope, I don’t think so. If it’s Summer Festival it should be a while later."
Hiyori replied while fiddling the handphone on her hand.
"Eh, eh~ I see…"
So is this the so-called city’s severe test.
I had once watched the TV about what “Commuter RUSH” and I was sneering at it thinking “their acting are really exaggerating”, but based on the current situation it seemed that it was true.
"please don’t tell me the next train will be that kind of situation", thinking of that I had a chill on my spine.
Maybe because I wasn’t used to it yet, along with the escalator when I was near towards the ground, my heart was filled with an unusual tension.
"Going down…. going down now."
I was ready to get down, but I couldn’t find a perfect timing, so my steps ended up being weird.
Hiyori who got down first laughed while she said that, I was embarassaed that I couldn’t lift up my head.
Next time before a ride with Hiyori, I should have practice first.
As we walked towards the ticket barrier, there mixed a bigger crowd than at the platform. I was thinking if move forward along the crowd, the road I walk will be really like an adventure.
Hiyori still as usual, she hurriedly walked away without waiting for me, but, since I also had the ticket, I thought it wasn’t a problem to just imitate the person in front and just move ahead.
It was my first time seeing an automatic ticket barrier, that had frequently placed human into the past.
This will really check the ticket properly? I felt that there might be one or two who can sneak through it.
When it was almost my turn, to not make any mistake I tightly watched the hand actions of the person in front of me.
That person took out something and placed it on the machine as it beeped, and calmly passed thought the ticket barrier.
I see, so that’s the system. The train station at my ol’ home was by the good ol’ uncle who cuts the tickets one by one, so this is indeed the city. Although I still couldn’t understand, it was really high-tech.
It was my turn, as I made sure the machine wasn’t jammed, I placed the ticket on the machine like how the previous person did, and moved forward.
However, it happened but. Along with the ear-piercing electronic sound “BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEPPPPPPPPP———————”, as if it was gonna grip me and kill me the board suddenly appeared.
Facing this extremely unexpected situation I couldn’t resist from screaming. As I was in danger I turned back to look, adults who were giving confused looks, speechlessly looked down at my side.
"w-Wah….. HIYORI! H-HELP ME!"
When the staff was rushing over, Hiyori who already walked quite a distance stunned there while looking at me, but when I called her name she blushed and lowered her sight.
"Haha, you okay kid. You need to put the ticket inside here"
According to how the staff said I stuffed the ticket into the ticket barrier, and the high tension of the machine just now was like a dream, the board successfully opened.
Finally being released I felt relieved, but I couldn’t stand how the crowd looked at me so I sneaked away, the person in front who was waiting for me was Hiyori who looked unhappy.
"Do you actually come to embarrass me…?"
Facing Hiyori’s face full with anger and as if a thunder storming sound effect was accompanying behind I lamented a lil.
"B-Because the previous person….. that……. AAHHH, SORRY! I’ll be cautious next time…"
I desperately apologised, I didn’t know was it because being angry at me was just wasting energy or what, Hiyori just said “you have to cheer up kay” then again she paced away.
After that, will I successfully reach my destination without any accidents.
Just when I wanted to chase up, Hiyori suddenly turned her head towards me and stuck her tongue out, that figure of her from my view looked as if she was saying to me “Come n’ catch me.”
"I’ll definitely catch you……!"
Once again I grabbed the handle of the luggage tightly, aimed at Hiyori who was about to disappear in the crowd, and took a big step forward.
Under the blazing hot sun, being surrounded by the hot rays coming from all directions that I had never experienced before, till the moment my life bar almost reached 0, we finally reached in front of the red-bricked small house.
"We’re here…? We are FINALLY HERE…….?!"
"Of course we are. Are you stupid?"
After passing through the ticket barrier, I had myself squeezed with the unusually cramped crowd in the subway, and finally when I reached the ground, I had been fooled by the large flow of cars, wanted to cross the road but being fooled by the hands of the traffics light which I couldn’t understand what they were directing, it was really embarrassing.
And also this sunlight.
This extremely offensive heat that I couldn’t imagine when I was at the village, was decreasing my lifepoint in an incredibly high speed.