“Umm, you know, Shinichi-kun, I…” Rinko said.
Shinichi seemed to have the wrong idea about many things.
As expected, there was a consequence to not living in a civilized society for a time. Rinko was about to admonish Shinichi, but the cry of a grown man drowned her out.
A pained cry bellowing from the bottom of one’s stomach. A pain resulting from being kicked in the arms and the head.
“AAH! Please, someone! It hurts, it hurts, someone save me, save—” The man cried.
“—You’re noisy. Shut up,” Shinichi replied.
Shinichi had suddenly mercilessly kicked the source of that annoying sound (face). A sound that he didn’t even pay much attention to in the first place.
After a brief groan-like scream, the man lost consciousness from his bloodied face and crushed nose.
“You won’t die from something like this, so shut up and go to sleep… Rinko-san, you were saying?”
Because Shinichi so matter-of-factly stomped on the groaning man’s face and turned to her with a friendly smile, Rinko couldn’t help but find herself coming up with a headache.
To make things worse, Shinichi had even taken special consideration to make sure that he covered Shinji’s eyes again.
“Well, for starters, that was going too far, Shinichi-kun,” Rinko said.
“Yes?” Shinichi replied.
Rinko’s admonishment was unfortunately met with nothing more than confusion.
Rinko pointed toward the faltering crowd.
Curious, Shinichi followed her fingers. There he noticed the crowd for the first time.
If he were to pick something out of the things he knew, then the closest thing would be a certain kind of fear. A fear he has seen many times. The kind one found in the battlefield when one had to fight even though there was no chance of winning.
The kind of face soldiers made when they didn’t know how they were even supposed to fight.
The kind of fear that terrorized a person when one stood before a threat that couldn’t be escaped.
But this was a little different.
There was fear and panic indeed, but at the same time, they looked like they were looking at an unknown organism.
They couldn’t understand it. No. Their fear made them not want to. And from that stemmed something akin to a feeling of rejection.
Everyone was keeping a distance and just looking, but their gazes were stiff.
They were scared, but at the same time, they refused to acknowledge the strange creature in front of them.
It was then that Shinichi remembered. This wasn’t the first time such a gaze was sent toward him. The first time was in another world.
When the people then realized that he only looked somewhat like them, but deep inside he was ‘not normal’. Their gaze then was also full of fear and rejection.
“Dang,” Shinichi remarked.
Come to think of it, this was that sort of country, wasn’t it? Shinichi wryly smiled.
The kind of country where a person could live his whole life without being exposed to violence.
Yes, this was a country were this much violence was out of the ordinary.
Putting it nicely, a country that has gotten too used to peace. Putting it poorly, a country that didn’t look at filthy things.
Shinichi had already been reminded prior that the ones who understood a country’s affairs the least were none other than its own citizens; hence, as far he was concerned, the gaze of these people were irrelevant.
“Shinichi, you…” Nobuhiko said.
So what he was really troubled about was his dad’s shocked expression.
To Nobuhiko, his son, Shinichi, was a spoiled and cowardly child who would try to endure the bad and scary things, and yet in the end, succumb to ask someone for help.
But even then Nobuhiko believed that his son would never resort to violence.
Shinichi was a child so scared of hurting others that even in the face of violence he would offer none of his own.
That was what he believed, and as a parent it was something that he held in high esteem.
It was because of that that the words ‘son’ and ‘violence’ simply couldn’t be reconciled within his mind.
And yet that same son of his, who should have had never before been involved in a fight with others, had just kicked down an adult.
Calmly, naturally, matter-of-factly executing violence and inflicting injury upon another.
It was true that the man was a criminal who could blame no one else for this result other than himself, but to think that Shinichi would actually go so far as to kick him down when he had started asking for help.
Nobuhiko found it difficult to immediately reconcile the fact that it was none other than his own son who did such a thing.
‘Who are you?’ Nobuhiko was about to say, but he swallowed those words for they were not words that should ever be said.
Of course, he knew full well that these criminals trying to hurt them were the ones in the wrong.
His wife and his son had only exerted violence to protect themselves.
Nobuhiko didn’t find anything odd from Rinko’s behavior because of her line of work, but at the same time, he felt that there was something intrinsically different behind her actions and Shinichi’s actions even though they had both merely purged criminals.
Rinko had struck a powerful blow on the criminal with the intentions of apprehending him, but Shinichi had already kicked the criminal twice and yet still continued to hammer him down.
That was clearly not an act meant to defend oneself but an act meant to crush a person.
And Shinichi did not find anything strange about it at all until Rinko pointed it out.
Nobuhiko was speechless.
He had nothing he could say to his son and his wife who were talking with each other.
It’s a simple thing to say that violence is wrong, but that didn’t really apply right now.
Shinichi was right to defend himself.
Nobuhiko just couldn’t admit it because of his ego as a parent.
But he couldn’t scold him for going too far either since Rinko was already doing that. As such, there was nothing left for him to say.
It wasn’t something to be proud of, but Nobuhiko had never once fought with another person.
What could he say about a topic he knew nothing about? No. What was he supposed to say about it?
He approached his son with a wry smile, but he really didn’t have any words to give.
“Dad, take care of Shinji,” Shinichi said.
“Huh, ah, ahh!” Nobuhiko replied.
It was curious whether Shinichi had noticed Nobuhiko’s worries, but he handed his younger brother to him without so much as a change in his expression.
“Rinko-san said it would take time handing those guys to the police and explaining the situation, so the two of you should wait here for a while.”
Tl Note: Been awhile since the last release, so I’ll be posting several releases this week.