Words surprisingly have a lot of ‘power’.
Sometimes it can move the cogs of history. Other times it can change fate.
But that doesn’t mean it will always give good results.
In fact, the opposite is often true.
Using words correctly is difficult.
Receiving words correctly is difficult.
What makes this power inconvenient are the people speaking it and hearing it.
Because this power can bring the worst end to either one.
Even such simple words that ask for help can bring about a tragedy.
‘Someone’ later said that he shouldn’t have cried for help.
Even though it was the result of his own actions. Even though he was the one in the wrong.
But because he made them carry that burden, their path to life came to be obstructed.
‘They’ who could not abandon ‘someone’ who fell along the way.
‘They’ who were not disgusted when ‘someone’ couldn’t understand their words.
‘They’ who laughed with ‘someone’ who was powerless and could not give them anything.
‘They’ who were strong and protected ‘someone’ who was so weak he could not even defend himself.
Because it was these very people, when he realized the meaning behind their pleas, he froze up in shock and could not move.
The boy, who should have fought, stopped moving and was torn by someone’s claws.
The girl, whose face brimmed with strength, felt despair as she was crushed by someone’s arm.
The boy, who held a weapon but could not use it, was burned down by someone’s flames (breath).
The girl who could not run – perhaps out of fear or responsibility – was swallowed by someone’s fangs.
The last of them used what breath remained to utter those words fearfully.
“Sa… ve… me…!”
‘They’ begged ‘someone’ for the first time, but it could not be granted.
To this day, that ‘someone’ could still vividly remember how their lives felt.
“I see. So you met Daigo,” Nobuhiko said.
“Sorry, I lost track of time talking about the past,” Shinichi said.
Should he really be saying that?
But Shinichi spoke vaguely to pull the wool over his parents’ eyes.
It was easy for him to convince them since he never mentioned previously reuniting with his childhood friend.
“Should we say hi too?” Nobuhiko asked.
“He’s in the middle of work right now. We’ll just cause him trouble.
But once we’re done shopping, then we could take a rest there,” Rinko said.
“True,” Nobuhiko said.
“S-Sounds good… Ahaha,” Shinichi said.
As things turned toward a bad direction, Shinichi found himself laughing with a parched voice.
But he did not have the authority to overturn his parents’ decision when they’d already made their minds.
All Shinichi could do now was to pray that that girl wouldn’t say anything unnecessary, and that what he told his dad wouldn’t be mentioned to Daigo.
“Now, where should we start?
Is there anything you want, Shinichi-kun?”
After deciding to go shopping, for some reason, Rinko only asked Shinichi what he wanted.
He thought there was something really familiar in the way she eyed him, but he shook his head nonetheless.
“T-There’s nothing particular I want. I have everything I need already, and…”
“In other words, I can do as I please, right? Alright! Let’s go!”
After Rinko seemingly came to understand something, Shinichi was forcefully dragged around. It was a repeat of last week.
It was only when he realized that that he understood that his arm was being pulled.
He could not reject her since she reminded him of a sister he could not forgot.
Perhaps that was the reason behind that familiar feeling, he thought, but by then they’ve already started going around the stores.
On the first floor underground, Rinko happily took some food samples and bought some sweets. At the counter of the ladies’ wear and menswear, they bought clothes for married couples as was recommended by Shinichi.
On the second floor, where the goods for everyday life could be purchased, they added several convenient kitchenwares to their shopping basket.
On the third floor, they bought a monster doll for Shinji when he wouldn’t let go of it.
CD stores were already starting to become a rarity, but there was one here, and they listened to the recently popular tracks.
On the books and stationary floor, they bought several volumes of manga that the amaryllis seemed to like. They also purchased some popular shows that Shinichi recommended, but for some reason, they were all anime DVDs aimed toward toddlers.
They went through the room interior supplies section, but Shinichi shook his head at everything.
After that they went through several more stores.
Before they knew it, it was already past 2:00.
They ate before leaving, but as expected, it was almost time for them to take a break.
Rinko and Nobuhiko went back to the parking lot to load the things they bought, and Shinichi waited inside the store with his stepbrother and ‘her’, but when Rinko came back, she was really unhappy.
Nobuhiko struggled not to laugh as he followed from behind.
When they got to where Shinichi was, Rinko asked Shinichi.
“Hey, Shinichi-kun. Was that on purpose?”
“You definitely did it on purpose! I know it!
If that’s how you’re going to play, then I’m definitely going to buy you something today!”
Before Shinichi could say anything, his arm was pulled and he was taken to the youth clothes section of the first floor.
As Rinko made an amused smile, she proudly declared.
“Leave it to me!”
Shinichi didn’t have the slightest intention of going against her.