Comedic Mechanism: Parade of the Jane Does (124/291)

I reserve the right to remove this translation without warning.

Progress:
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This an experiment.

I have nothing to say this time other than: Chapter 2 is my favorite.

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Translation Notes:

Comedic Mechanism: Parade of the Jane Does

[5]

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: A Night of Unpleasant Rain – 7
Chapter 2: March of the Saints – 95
Chapter 3: An Unbearable Existence in Suffering – 191
Chapter 4: An Emptiness Devoid of Color Contrast – 257

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[95]

Chapter 2: March of the Saints

[97]

ーBeast! Do you not realize I am in love!?

Usami Renko only realized her image was being projected on the display in front of the train station a few minutes prior, feeling a breeze indicative of the end of spring travel down her neck.

It was a ten minute trip from West Kyoto University to the train station nearest to where she taught as a part-time private tutor, a trip that consisted of riding local trains that swayed back and forth as they turned.

Despite being the nation’s capital, West Kyoto’s development reached only a little over ten kilometers from its downtown area. At this simple station, there was one exit gate and only three short buildings waited outside. The bridge that led to the station gates only had a few scattered people crossing in either direction.

Renko was walking alone across the bridge and had noticed just as she was adjusting the strap of her bag on her shoulder.

The LCD display hung from one of the buildings that faced the station. It normally ran promotional videos, but this time, Renko saw herself in the display. Where was the camera? Given the angle of the shot, which included others walking across the bridge, Renko thought there might be a camera attached to one of the street lamps, but she couldn’t see anything when she looked.

Renko leaned against the rails bridge and looked up at the display again. There she saw herself looking off in no particular direction, her stupid looking profile there for all the crowd to see. She stared.

[98]

“Now that I have the opportunity to look at myself like this…” Renko muttered under her breath, “…have I lost weight? It isn’t as if anything’s happened… Well actually, I’m not sure I can really say that.”

“It’s no big deal, nothing to lose weight over anyway,” she told herself. Why did she feel she had to say that? She didn’t quite know herself.

Renko took her tumbler out of her bag. It was empty — she had already finished it. All that was left was the container. As she fiddled with it, Renko continued to stare at herself in the screen. The green container with its pattern of small flowers danced on the screen in low resolution.

What is here and what is there… even though they should be the same thing, by taking one through the eyes of a lens and passing it through to a pixelated screen, the result is something entirely different. If you think about it, it only makes sense, but perhaps because the sky is so dark and my image on the screen is flat and to some degree unsaturated… it looks more like a painting that someone drew. While it is me… it’s not. It’s something else.

Renko lifted her left wrist to look at her watch. It was just under five minutes until they were supposed to meet up.

“I really should have filled this thing back up,” she said, looking at her tumbler again.

[99]

About twenty years ago, it an effort to reduce the impact on the environment, it became common practice not to use disposable paper cups for beverages, but for people to carry around their own containers. That way one could bring their container to an automated coffee stand, have their beverage dispensed, and take it with them to go.

But there was nothing in Renko’s tumbler at the moment. She had finished drinking its contents before she left the university.

“There’s no point carrying this around is there, if I don’t keep it filled…” Renko laughed at herself listlessly.

Renko went back to doing nothing, just leaning against the rails of the bridge and staring up at the sky.

“Hi Renko.”

As Renko was tuning out her surroundings, a familiar voice caught her attention. Putting her tumbler back into her bag she turned to face the owner of the voice, who was wearing a school uniform with a dark blue blazer.

“Welcome back.”

“It’s not like this is my home or anything,” the girl laughed with a soft tone to her voice.

Her lightly colored hair, which normally had a bit of a wave to it, was a little disheveled. She must have run at least part of the way, and seemed out of breath. Renko didn’t really care much about this, but even so, she raised her hand and played with the girl’s hair between her fingers. It felt a little damp.

[100]

“Did you run all the way here?”

“I couldn’t help myself once I saw you,” the girl laughed, blushing.

“That so,” said Renko, making a face as if she were happy to hear such a thing, before petting the girl’s hair and straightening out her hair.

The girl fidgeted as if she was ticklish, and Renko thought as her mind wandered that this girl was just like a puppy. That’s right, a puppy. This wasn’t in a positive or affectionate sort of way, just an observation. The girl moved closer to Renko’s side, opposite of her bag, pressed against her and linked their arms together. She moved slowly, without a word, but just smiled.

As they started walking to the bus stop, Renko looked back up at the screen, as almost an afterthought. She wondered how she looked now, but could only see the back of her head and the profile of the girl beside her. The image was pixelated, as before. The smile the girl had plastered on her face too looked like a painting.

“You were early today,” Renko said.

“Are you sure? I’m pretty sure I always come at the same time.”

“I didn’t wait as long.”

“Doesn’t that just mean you came later than usual?”

Renko looked over and saw the girl’s face staring at her. Blue eyes mixed with a little brown. Looking straight into those eyes Renko answered.

“Who knows?” she said with a chuckle.

[101]

“Did something happen?”

“What makes you say that?”

“That face you’re making. That’s the face you make when something’s happened.”

“Nothing happened.”

“Liar. You only make this face when something that matters has happened.”

Renko felt the girl pull on their interlocked arms, and they stopped. She kept staring. Renko knew she should say something. She knew, but that didn’t mean that she actually had to say anything. But no, that’s not it, she thought, feeling as if barbed worms were squirming around inside her brain.

Renko reached inside her skirt pocket and took out a vaporizer, and put the mouthpiece in her mouth. (Such a device is for smoking, rather than medical use. By this time, the sale of cigarettes had ended due to a broad interpretation of the Law for the Promotion of General Health.) Sensors on the mouthpiece measured the temperature of her lips and automatically delivered a puff of vaporized nicotine. Renko inhaled and slowly let out a stream of vapor.

“That’s bad for you, you know?”

“I know,” Renko said with a slight smile.

[102]

Renko felt the effect of the nicotine sink into her brain. There was a slight feeling of intoxication. Her sense of distance weakened. After taking three puffs on her vaporizer, she put it back in her skirt pocket.

“It’s not cheap either.”

“Well I’m making enough money to pay for it.”

“That’s not what I mean.”

“That’s not what I mean,” she whispered again again softly and started walking again. Pulled along, Renko followed. They were no longer up on that display.

That’s the way it should be, Renko thought. I don’t want to see myself laid out for everyone else to see, at least not for long. Especially — especially not when I’m alone.

Alone. Usami Renko at that very moment did indeed have someone she was walking with. However, to her, she still felt as if she was alone. The distance between them was vast. They were not distant in any real quantitative way, yet they were and continued to be — distant.

This girl — the one who had latched herself to Renko as they walked — she was Usami Renko’s pupil, the one she tutored. More importantly, however, she was Renko’s girlfriend. But the truth was, Renko didn’t really love her anymore.

[103]

Since when? Probably since the very beginning. Did the girl know? Did she not? Renko couldn’t bring herself to ask, or to even think about it much. The girl was no different from Renko’s vaping habit. She and it filled a void.

The girl’s house was about ten minutes by bus from the train station. However, the bus followed a loop, so it was a shorter distance to walk. So Renko and her girlfriend would never wait for the bus if it wasn’t at the stop. The streets they walked were arranged geometrically, like a go board, and were paved with white tiles. Other than the two, there was no one else to be seen, despite the fact that this was a time when you would expect everyone to be heading home. It wasn’t as if the area was in the middle of nowhere, and Renko thought it was probably some sort of coincidence.

“Hey, Renko? You know, there’s this thing that’s really popular at school right now.”

“Yeah?”

“Stories that are really really scary, depending on who you are.”

“Huh? What do you mean?”

“I mean exactly what I said, stories that to some people might not be scary at all, but to other people are really scary. It depends on the person. Those kind of stories are really popular right now.”

[104]

“Are there really that many of them?”

“Everyone’s busy collecting them, and everyone shares one during our lunch break.”

Renko’s girlfriend narrowed her eyes and looked up at Renko.

“If everyone feels the same way about the story, then that’s a win.”

“There are winners and losers?”

“Yeah, I mean after all, it’s a ‘cult’.”

“Again?”

“It’s what’s popular right now.”

Cult.

Apparently they’re using the original meaning of the word, “to worship”.

Renko had heard from her girlfriend that this “cult” activity was especially popular among high school students. Basically it consisted of games that groups of friends would play in order to reaffirm how close-knit they were. Renko hadn’t asked about what happened if the game really didn’t affirm that the group was close-knit, but she had an idea of what would happen.

In any isolated community, any factor that becomes a threat to the community’s continued existence is always removed. A group of close-knit friends must always consist only of those who are close-knit friends. That’s all there is to it.

[105]

“Once upon a time there was a man — a man who said, ‘I am afraid of my own wife.'”

That was how Renko’s girlfriend began her tale.


This man, long ago, was married. When he went out with his wife she always supported him. She never cheated on him, and she truly did devote herself to him. Yet despite this, this man was afraid of his wife.

“When that man first met his wife — it was about ten years ago — well it was love at first sight, you see, and he proposed to her on the spot. But you see, this is what the wife said to him, ‘I don’t love you one bit. In fact, I hate you. But still, for you I will be an ideal wife.’ Together at home, they hardly speak, and it seems that she’s happier when her husband is away and she is out of the house. But she never cheats, and always does the housework properly. If you look at others who married in love, she is clearly far better a wife. She always has been. They had children, and according to that man, even though it’s clear they are his children, it doesn’t look like his wife really loves them. But she doesn’t act mean to them. She’s even saving up money for their future. One day, he asked her, ‘Was what you said to me when I proposed to you really true?’ And you know what she said, with a smile on her face? ‘Yes. I don’t love you or our children one bit.'”

The end.

[106]

“So Renko. Was that story scary to you?”

“Well, I guess it was, a little bit.”

That was a lie. To Renko, this story sounded too normal to be even called a story. Humans are capable of having sex if just a couple of their wants or needs line up. The same thing for housework, or for having children. They can even pretend to love, if that’s part of the rules.

“I’m so happy to hear that. You see, it was really scary for me.”

“You mean the wife was scary?”

“Well yes, but what was… Nevermind, I guess she was, wasn’t she?”

At first Renko tried to catch what she meant but did not say, but in the end she felt that it didn’t really matter, and muttered a neutral answer.

[107]

“Everyone said it was scary.”

“Well yeah, that kind of person is scary.”

“You’re right… yeah… She is scary isn’t she…”

The girl stopped, and so Renko stopped along with her.

“Renko, don’t you have one?”

“One of what?”

“A scary story.”

“I don’t know if I can think of one on the spot… But, hmm… Maybe that story of the performer will do.”

Long ago, there was a really popular act at the circus, where a performer would starve themselves. All it was, was that someone would sit and not eat for days. This man would sit in a cage, eating nothing, just sitting in that cage, eating nothing for days and days. On the man’s cage would be a plaque, which said: “This man has not eaten for X anumber of days.”

People would come in crowds and crowds to see the man reduced to skin and bones.

Was he really not eating? Wasn’t he sneaking in some sort of food? Those kind of curious stares would surround him.

[108]

The man really wasn’t eating. Nothing, for days and days.

Even so, people eventually grew tired of seeing the man.

In the beginning, the cage was set in the middle of the circus, but before long it was relegated to a corner. The people who came, they wanted to see elephants and lions. No one wanted to see the starving man anymore. But he didn’t stop. He continued to not eat. Even as he dried out, even as he became indistinguishable from a clump of hay, he would not stop.

One day, the owner of the circus came to the cage and asked, “How many days has it been since you have eaten?”

With a voice that could hardly be heard, he answered, “I do not know.”

People had stopped keeping track of the days, and the plaque had fallen, a mess, in a corner of the cage.

“Why don’t you stop?” The owner asked. “No one is looking at you anymore.”

But the man shook his head.

“There is nothing I can eat. What everyone eats, so happily, all of it is disgusting to me. I cannot stand it. I cannot eat anything. That is why I am here. If I could eat, the same way that you all can, if I could eat the same things you do so happily, I would not be here.”

“And that was the last thing the man said, before he died,” Renko said.

[109]

“What happened next?” Renko’s girlfriend asked, listening intently.

“After the man died, they put a large and lively, pitch black panther in his cage. A large black panther, that everyone cheered to see.”

She was waiting, she was waiting for Renko to continue.

“That’s the end.”

“The end?”

“Yeah, that’s it.”

“That’s… scary?”

“It’s you who said, ‘depending on the person.'”

Renko reached out and stroked her girlfriend’s cheek. It felt as if she was rubbing the skin of a peach.

“Well I did, but why is that story scary?”

“Who knows? There was someone once who said it was scary.”

“What part?”

“The very end, when they put the panther in the cage, and everyone cheers… I think.”

[110]

“Why?”

“I really don’t know. Wonder why.”

That was another lie.

“At this rate, we won’t make it in time. Can we walk a bit faster?”

“Okay,” Renko answered softly.

When Renko looked up, the sun had started to fall under the horizon, with the sky scarlet and the shadows growing longer. The clouds had darkened to black and it all looked, in a way, like a Rorschach test.

Renko pointed.

“What is it?”

“That cloud…”

“Cloud?”

“It looks like it might show up on one of those psychological tests.”

“Huh?”

“There’s this sort of test where you’re asked what things like that look like.”

“There’s really a test like that?”

[111]

“Yeah. It’s more of an occult sort of thing though.”

“Interesting. So what does that cloud look like to you, Renko?”

“Well, it looks like…”

Renko watched as the wind slowly to tore the cloud apart.

“…a child.”

“A… child?”

“I thought it looked kind of like a child’s finger.”

“Huh,” the girl muttered in response, and that was the end of their conversation.

***

I am not sure how long ago it was that I first met her. I think it was on a day my girlfriend suddenly cancelled our weekend date because apparently something came up she could not miss. So I went by shopping by myself to the same clothing store and boutique we had originally planned on going to, but I couldn’t bring myself to buy anything, and after a bit of wandering around I found myself walking in a nearby park.

[112]

There was a large pond in the middle of the park, with a lot of cherry trees planted around it and a trail that wound between them. It happened when I was walking along that trail. Often there would be some sort of theater group performing a show, and you would see couples on dates walking together. It was that sort of place. It wasn’t as if it was ever crowded, but it was always lively. Whenever I was in a place like that alone… I couldn’t help but feel miserable.

As I walked around the circular trail around the pond, I looked up at the cherry trees. They had already turned green, already lost half of their spring blossoms. It was a dirt trail, so even after walking for so long, my feed did not hurt. I did not like to walk on paved roads. If I was walking for more than a short while, my ankles and the soles of my feet would always begin to hurt. For that reason, I really did not like walking around town. I don’t think humans were really made to walk on pavement. If I’m together with someone else, I don’t notice as much, but if I am alone, I can’t keep it off my mind. I asked my girlfriend once, “Why do towns and cities always want to pave everything over?” Her response was that cities want everything to be in order. “If a city loses its order, it won’t be a city anymore.” It was a little over my head, and I struggled to understand. When she saw my puzzled face, she looked a little disappointed and did her best to explain. But the more she explained things to me, the more I wanted to just end it all with a kiss. “Don’t grow tired of me,” I thought. I couldn’t help but think it.

[113]

Again and again, I would kiss her, just to change the subject.

I think that my kisses are expendable items. It feels that every time I kiss her, the me inside this girl I love is scraped away, little by little. The pieces would fall off like sand and I would be less. I would be taken apart until there was nothing left of myself within her. It made me sad to think that way, but if I felt that one day I would be gone.

Everyone else, the friends I’ve bonded with by cult, they say that’s strange. Why would someone you’re in love with ever hate you? They ask. Love is eternal, they say. Sure, no one lasts forever. A person can slowly come apart and eventually be no more. But even so, love — love will last forever. That is what they say. That is what all the songs say.

After all, there are no longer any sad songs.

No longer.

Long ago, it seems sad songs existed. But they didn’t sell well, so everyone stopped singing them.

[114]

Someone once said, “Sad songs make us feel depressed, so we shouldn’t sing them.” That’s why we don’t know any sad songs. But I think that’s a wonderful thing. If we only have songs about things that are fun, things that make us happy, things that are beautiful… If we only sing songs like that, surely we’ll be happy. After all, someone else’s happiness can become your own.

But still, every now and then, I feel pain — pain when I see someone else’s smile, someone else’s happiness.

As I was thinking about all of this, walking around the pond, something touched my cheek. When I reached up and touched my cheek, it felt damp. I looked up at the sky and it was covered in gray clouds, and white particles were falling. I first thought it was rain, but the speed that it was falling was too slow for it to be rain.

I stopped and held out my hand. It was a single cherry blossom petal. At first I thought rain had caused some of the remaining petals to fall, but I could not feel any rain fall on my face. Around the petals water droplets were blossoming.

It really did take me longer than it should have to realize it was snow. A strong wind blew and a flurry of flower petals and little snowflakes flew before my eyes.

[115]

One. Two. Three. I quickly lost count.

Soon powder snow had filled half of this spring sky. The weather report hadn’t said anything like this would happen. (In this current age of science, the weather was carefully controlled, and the weather report was nothing more than a release of the latest weather schedule.) It felt as if a hedgehog with soft spines had curled up deep inside my chest. Half of the other people in the park looked surprised, with the other half a mix of other emotions, and you could hear people talking about it amongst themselves.

I stared at the sky, at the snow swirling about in a spiral.

One of those small pieces found its way into my eye.

I felt a stinging, numbing pain. It should have been cold, but it was different from what I thought. Rather than cold, it felt hot. I covered my eyes and looked down as the throbbing pain seeped deeper into my head. Wasn’t it snow? What I had in my hand before was definitely…

Tears began to flow, and I rubbed furiously at my face with my sleeve.

[116]

People only cry when something they don’t need enters them. For instance, when dust or sand enters their eyes, or sadness enters their hearts.

I remember long ago, my girlfriend told that to me as she comforted me. What happened, I wonder. I felt really sad, and a pain in my chest, and she told me that it was okay to cry. She told me to let it all out, everything inside my heart I did not need. That everyone in life has only a limited amount they cry, and it is best to cry while you are still able.

“Umbrella,” I muttered, as the tears started to subside.

I did not have an umbrella. Realizing that if I stayed out in the snow it would only be a matter of time before I was drenched I looked around and saw a small hut by the pond, so I ran to it.

The hut was mostly empty, except for a grimy and blackened wooden table and bench. There was already another person there, a woman. She was not sitting on the bench, but standing, and in front of her was another small hut, and inside that, two dolls were standing. It was a stage for puppet theater. There were portable weren’t there? I thought. I had seen some before when I was little. I wondered if she was practicing a performance like the other theater groups who come to the park.

[117]

But why would she do it here? I thought. The building was run down, more of a shack than a hut. Maybe she didn’t want others to see her practicing? She probably could have practiced outside, behind the hut and closer to the lake and no one would have paid her any mind.

I sat down on the bench beside her. In the woman’s hands were wooden crosses with wires she used to move the puppets. As the wind blew again, I glanced up at her short golden hair, cut above the shoulders. Her face from where I sat looked just like a doll’s. Her blue eyes looked as if they were made of glass.

“At the Snow Queen’s castle, the thick snow itself became the castle walls, and the windows and doors were made of a biting wind,” rang a clear voice. The woman puppeteer had begun to speak.

As I looked at her from the corner of my eye, her lips were not moving at all. She must have been using some sort of ventriloquism. It felt as the story had come unto itself naturally rather than from the woman. The way she moved nothing but the tips of her fingers, I could not help but feel that way.

“Due to the cold Kai had become blue, and then black. Even still, Kai could not feel the cold, for the Snow Queen had kissed him and sucked the feeling of cold out of him. And so, Kai’s heard became like ice.”

[118]

I glanced at the puppet stage. It was all blue, and had no other color. Of the two puppets, one was a girl who was standing aloof, and the other was sitting gathering something. Well, it wasn’t actually gathering anything, but it was moving in such a way that made it seem like it was.

“Kai took several pieces of thin ice he found here and there and pieced them together into different shapes, trying to make something. They were magnificent clumps of ice, puzzles of ice pieces, and in Kai’s eyes these things were beautiful and precious above all else. This was because of the piece of the mirror stuck in Kai’s eye. Kai tried to express a single word with these shapes.”

The puppet still kept collecting things. It moved very smoothly, too smoothly to be real.

“‘I tried to use all of the ice pieces I found to make one word, the word ‘eternity’. But I was unable to, no matter how hard I tried.'”

When I heard those words I felt as if something was caught in my throat. I tried to get rid of it and coughed, again and again, and by the fifth time, I was sobbing. I collapsed upon myself and cried and cried. What was I sad about? What was it inside me that I did not need? I did not know. As I kept crying, and the sobs flowed out from my throat it was otherwise shut, blocked up. Tears from my eyes flowed out, with drops larger than the snowflakes outside. I hugged my body to myself and balled up on the bench.

[119]

By the time my tears had led up, the woman had finished her performance and was staring at me. She wasn’t smiling and she didn’t look as if she were trying to make me feel better. She just stared at me, just like a doll.

“What…” I said, rubbing my eyes with my sleeve. “What story was that from?”

“It’s a story called ‘The Snow Queen’,” she answered quietly.

For some reason, that made me feel happy for some reason.

The snow was starting to fall harder outside. I looked through my tears at the surface of the pond outside. With the white falling over the red of the already fallen cherry blossoms, the combination looked pink, like flamingo feathers. Between the feathers of various shades the surface of the pond reflected the sky. Perhaps because of the dark clouds, the surface looked like a mirror, with several ripples running across it. In one of the many rippling rings I saw myself and the woman in the hut. Because of the ripples running over it, my face was mess.

[120]

“I look terrible,” I whispered.

“You do,” the woman answered.

In the mirror, everything was twisted. Even the cherry trees I had thought looked so beautiful before, now looked like crumpled pieces of paper in a waste bin. Despite being so tall, in the mirror they were short and their branches were twisted. Even the powdered snow, which continued to fall, looked filthy in the mirror.

The woman. The woman beside me. She…

Beside me stood what looked like a life-sized doll, filled with gears. From the waist down was the frame of a skirt, which looked like a bird cage, something a woman from the middle ages would wear. Between the wooden slats of the skirt frame I could see a large pocket watch. But the hands of the pocket watch were twisted and the face of it was filled with symbols I did not understand. I could not tell what time it was supposed to show. The hour hand, minute hand and second hand were all twisted into a spiral, and they all turned. Still, I thought that it must be telling some sort of time. Where her face was, where it should be, was a round outline of a face. It had hinges and had swung open. It was still swinging back and forth slightly. Inside it looked like the inside of a clock. There were countless gears and springs of all sizes ticking along in an orderly way. There was a shattered clock face, and a single clock hand, clicking and vibrating in place, by the number seventeen. It kept vibrating on seventeen. Even though there is no seventeen on a clock, it was there, on that clock like thing.

[121]

But it wasn’t just that number. All of the numbers were seventeen.

The face, the cover… It was swinging, the woman’s face was a door, a cover, and it was swinging.

Upon that face a single snowflake blew in and landed, creating a ripple.

The eye was shaking, the eye that snowflake just fell into. It was convulsing.

I turned my neck away from the window to face her. There she was, like a large doll, staring at me. It wasn’t that she had forgotten how to smile. After all, dolls don’t smile.

“You…” It just slipped out, I couldn’t help it. “What are you?”

[122]

“I am a witch,” she said softly.

This time, her lips were moving.

“I am a witch. A witch who performs puppet theater, a witch of the forest, a witch named Alice Margatroid, an empty stage mechanism. Do you know? Humans are not reproduced, they are not reprinted. Some times in a person’s life, like the man with his head of lice, they will set their eyes deep into space, beyond the film of green, staring as if it consumes all else. Right beside them I feel the mocking laughter of the ghosts beside them, that I feel during those times.”

Before I knew it this woman, named Alice, was right beside me. She was touching my cheek.

It was cold.

“You could say that all of the power lines and cables that are hung all over and spread throughout the city are its brain. Within that brain, humans are not reproduced. They are not reprinted.”

She drew my face closer to hers, speaking in a whisper, her voice white like snow.

[123]

“There is a mirror inside of your eye.”

“A mirror…?”

“A fragment of the mirror we made long ago.”

“You made a mirror?”

“Yes, we did. What we called it then, however, was a witch mechanism.”

“A witch… mechanism?”

“Yes, a witch mechanism. We made it so that everyone could be happy.”

“Happy?”

“Happiness may be a personal matter, but on the other hand, misfortune is often a social matter. At least, that is what some people say. But you see it may be that happiness is the more social of the two.”

Those words, just like the words of the one I loved, went right over my head.

“Eternal beings made the world as it is now. If only they would forget their heavenly dignity for even for a moment, for just enough time it would take for them to shatter the head of a single girl with a hammer, to make ‘our’ world a little easier to breathe than that of a fish flung from the sea and into a boat, to make blatant the many secrets and things of the occult, if only that would happen then…”

As she paused, Alice smiled, for the very first time, twisting her lips slightly.

[124]

“…it certainly would be an event.”

“Event?”

“We are looking for an event. Something that will cultivate the void, and allow us to find a world of eternal happiness.”

“Will I…”

As I paused, Alice said nothing, but only stared with blue eyes.

“Will I be happy then too?”

“Yes, of course.”

I still don’t know why I asked that question, but…

That was how Alice and I first met.

***

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    • XOSkz-
    • November 14th, 2017

    can i request a song here? i have the lyrics.. non-touhou btw

    • Send me an e-mail at kafka.fuura(at)gmail.com and I’ll take a look.

    • XOSkz-
    • November 17th, 2017

    kafkafuura :
    Send me an e-mail at kafka.fuura(at)gmail.com and I’ll take a look.

    thank you very much! email sent.

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