Chapter 2: When You Ask Someone for His Name, It’s Common Courtesy to Ask in Swahili!
Chapter 2: Part 1
At that unfamiliar female voice, I exaggeratedly turned around. And I saw Yuu standing there, with a serious expression on her face.
Yes, she wasn’t emotionless, but what she was feeling was displayed clearly on her face.
“Do you have a moment?”
She beckoned to me with reserved motions, which was quite Yuu-like. But everything else was strange.
Why? Why was she talking?
Haruna was gripping strongly onto my clothes. She seemed frightened of something, and was giving me a pleading look.
“Sorry, Yuu. If you need to talk, could we do it here?”
Yuu glanced briefly at Haruna and seemed a bit at a loss, until…
She sat down right there.
I sat on the bed and put my hand on Haruna’s forehead. It felt really hot. I really couldn’t bring myself to remind her that today was the school festival.
“I really wasn’t sure if Haruna should hear this, but…”
Yuu sounded truly apologetic, and after starting with that, she continued with a meek look on her face.
“It seems that my power has begun to transfer to Haruna.”
“Has begun to transfer?”
“I do not know the reason. However… Haruna’s symptoms right now… they are familiar to me. I’ve experienced them myself before…”
The minute I heard that, a sudden insight flashed in my head.
I looked at Haruna’s chest and saw the magical energy suction device still hanging there.
Maybe, just maybe… but…
“So Haruna’s sucked up all your magical energy…?”
At my words, Yuu let out a sigh.
“Yes. I… may have give her back too much magical energy.”
“Hm? What do you mean?”
Her explanation was a bit different from what I was expecting, so I asked her to clarify.
“I had stolen Haruna’s magical energy. And when I met Ayumu, I discovered these TV variety shows at his house, and began to watch them every day as practice for suppressing the hardest emotion to suppress: enjoyment.”
So there was an actual reason for why Yuu was always watching these comedy shows?
“However, at that time… there was a comedic sketch that really did make me laugh hard.”
“Yuu did? That’s really unusual…”
“It was a sketch about necromancers, so I couldn’t really help-… ahem. In any case, I couldn’t stop myself from laughing. And at that time, flying nearby was…”
“Haruna, right? With that bear Megalo.”
Haruna gripped my hand tightly.
“It was… Kumacchi.”
Yeah, Kumacchi. Sure, now I remember.
“I was returning the magical energy I had stolen from Haruna back to her. However, my magical energy is like a poison, and when I use a large amount of it the world changes, and so I was giving it to her little by little, bit by bit. But Haruna usually is not around me, so this was always at mealtime.”
I see. Now that I thought about it, Haruna had mentioned before that this world’s food really replenished her magical energy.
Was that just Yuu giving her magical energy?
“I believe that the reason Ayumu was able to become a masou shoujo was because he has just had more contact with me than Haruna.”
“So you mean… the energy you wanted to return to Haruna was given to me instead?”
“Yes.” Yuu nodded, and at the same time Haruna kneed me in the back. Wait, weren’t you supposed to be sick?!
“Haruna’s fever will soon go down. However… it is very possible that she will no longer be permitted to feel emotions or say anything.”
In other words once her fever cools down, Yuu’s powers will have completely transferred to Haruna…
I see. Wait! Wasn’t that pretty bad?!
If she could be a dedicated as Yuu was, that was one thing, but there was no way a walking disaster like Haruna could hold herself back from feeling anything or talking!
“I apologize. Yesterday, when we were all drawing, I thought something. I wished for something.”
Yuu’s blue eyes seemed sad for some reason as they looked at me.
I felt myself being drawn to those eyes, and couldn’t look away from their beauty.
“I wished that I could also enjoy the school festival with Ayumu…”
Tears spilled from those blue eyes of hers. Yuu was probably thinking like this: “Someone like me should never ever wish to have fun.”
“But to think… it would really become like this… to think my prayer would get answered… I’m… I’m really sorry.”
Yuu faced Haruna and put her head on the ground. I patted Yuu gently on the shoulders.
“Ah, actually, about that… take a look at this.”
I showed Yuu the pendant that was hanging around Haruna’s neck.
“What is this?”
“This idiot genius made this magical power suction device or whatever. This situation probably isn’t your fault at all. It’s all on her.”
Yuu looked a bit lonely for some reason. Maybe she was pitying Haruna, or maybe it was something else… but Yuu didn’t speak again after that, so I couldn’t ask her either.
Haruna and Yuu and I all stayed there in silence… until we heard a knock on the door, and then…
“Haruna, I’m coming in.”
I heard Sera’s pretty voice. And I could also detect a hint of worry in that voice. It seemed that Sera also knew about Haruna’s situation.
Sera brought a tray with her, and I tried to allow Sera to take my place, but Haruna wouldn’t let go of my shirt sleeve.
Sera let out a small chuckle of resignation and passed me the tray.
On the tray was a cup filled with water, a pill that was rumored to be made half with kindness (1), and a pot fliled with concrete… was this concrete supposed to be rice porridge? She had brought me something like this when I was stuck in bed too right? Did she not know how to make rice porridge without concrete?!
“Haruna, how are you feeling?”
She spoke in a gentle voice that I had never heard directed at me. Her voice was so soothing that it could heal a raging heart, and in response to that voice…
It seemed like she wanted to say “I’m okay.” As always, Haruna didn’t want to show weakness in front of Sera and the others.
I couldn’t help but chuckle a bit at that, and then…
“Kuh! Uwaahh! Aghhh!”
Suddenly, Haruna started to roll around in her bed in pain, tearing at her hair.
“Haruna, you can’t let out a sound… no matter how painful it is.”
Perhaps Yuu’s voice didn’t manage to reach Haruna, but she continued to yell out. Soon, those shouts turned into sobs.
“Ayumu, hold her mouth shut.”
Yuu made that request with a serious expression on her face. I did as I was told, and put my hand over Haruna’s small cheeky mouth. But I didn’t have the time here to enjoy the feeling of her soft lips.
“Yuu, what should I do?”
“If she doesn’t let out a sound, she can avoid the headaches. It was also a big struggle for me to prevent myself from crying out.”
Just by talking, Yuu would suffer from severe headaches. I had heard that before. But considering Yuu never let her emotions show on her face, I was always wondering whether her headaches were really that painful.
However, when I saw Haruna now…
Her eyes were shut tight, lines of strain were forming on her forehead, and she was gritting her teeth while flapping her legs around and holding her head in her arms.
It was so, so painful… it was so painful she wanted to scream, but if she did that the pain would only get worse.
That was plain to see from Haruna’s actions.
Sera suggested that as she looked on with a worried expression, and I picked up the cup of water from the tray.
“Haruna. Do you want some water?”
Once I asked that, Haruna began to furiously nod.
I sat her up on the bed and passed her the cup. She took the cup with both hands, when suddenly her body sprung up and she dropped the cup.
The water spread everywhere on her pillow and sheets.
Haruna hurled the fluffy futon away from her and hugged herself.
“No… what is this… no… hyaaaaaaaaahhh!!!”
Her scream echoed through the room.
Seeing that, Yuu removed the gauntlets she was wearing and put them on Haruna’s hands. When she did that, Haruna began to cling to those gauntlets desperately.
“My powers are already starting to activate. This is faster than I had expected.”
Yuu looked straight at me.
“What… exactly happened?”
Sera asked the same question that had been on my mind.
“Her hands now have the power of healing. That power is able to take a wish to heal something and turn it into reality. And then, she herself shoulders that thing’s pain.”
“Could it be… this doesn’t apply just to people?”
Yuu gave a single nod at my words.
“The thoughts of inanimate objects are much more frightening. Right now, Haruna is experiencing all the feelings and pain of everything she touches.”
I got more and more sick to my stomach as Yuu explained things to me.
Sure, I pitied Haruna right now… but to think that Yuu had to live with all of this up until now…
“Can you seal all of this with those gauntlets?”
“Yes… this is something a friend of mine gave me. Something that I received… at a moment when I was afraid of everything… just like Haruna is right now.”
Yuu spoke in a solemn tone as she gazed at the gauntlets.
“Hm… how do we return things to normal…?”
Sera was in thought with her index finger on her lips.
I see… “returning things to normal” meant that Yuu would once again no longer be able to talk. And all the pain that Haruna was feeling would be transferred to Yuu.
I really didn’t know what to do here…
“For now… maybe we should move all of Hellscythe-dono’s equipment to Haruna?”
At Sera’s words, Haruna began to furiously shake her head.
“But then… I can’t dress as the swat team anymore.”
“Just give it up. This is fine. I’m sure swat teams in the West dress like this.”
Haruna once again shook her head even as tears ran down her cheeks… geez, what a spoiled brat.
“Alright, let’s start taking off Haruna’s clothes.”
I reached out and tried to take off her pajamas, when…
“Ayumu, get out out out!”
Looked like she could still shout, even if she had a headache…
And then I got hot concrete poured on top of my head, and had to tearfully make a beeline for the bathroom.
(1) He is talking about Bufferin, a pain medication whose ad slogan is “Made half with kindness.”