I came back but the world is still a fantasy!? – School Field Trip Arc – Act 1: This Is What Happens When I Go on a Trip – 04-100: His Invincibility V (3/3)

Monica wryly smiled in response to that teasing remark. Her expression held a mixture of amusement and probably a fair amount of exasperation, yet there was also a positive acknowledgment indicating understanding.

“What do you want to say?”

“I got it now. The way you do whatever you want, say whatever you want…You’re doing that simply because you believe it to be the most effective way of doing things, right?”

It hasn’t even been a day since they’ve met, yet he’s shown her so much of his activities that Monica was able to come up with another way of looking at his actions. Maybe, she’s always seen his actions in that light, and she only realized that now.

He wasn’t trying to cause trouble around him, rather he was just adapting to his surroundings.

“Did you think it would be faster to anger me? I got mad just as you intended, but what was up with that payment of yours? ‘Don’t worry, I want to hear your voice, so sing as much as you want’ is pretty much what it sounded like to me, you know?”

That was exactly how a big brother did things.
Not the skillful sort of big brother, but the sort that got to your head.
At the very least, Monica didn’t know how else to express that.

“…”

Shinichi’s expression didn’t change in response to that and neither did he say anything, but the fact he neither denied nor affirmed spoke plenty.

However, to Monica, his attitude looked no different from that of a child desperately trying to hide what they were thinking.

Normally, she would find such stubbornness endearing, but now that she’s realized it, she had no choice but to play along.

It was curious if that was the ego of an adult, the pride of someone older, or her consideration for him, she herself didn’t really know, but regardless, she pointed it out.

“Now that I look back to it, everything was like that, wasn’t it? The way you handled the children, the way you provoked me, the way you held the kids back to keep them from hurting themselves, your way of doing things was always the same.

…While respecting the wishes and feelings of the other person, you show them a path that considers their safety.

At most, your words adapt according to the person or the circumstance.”

He adapted to his surroundings, but he wasn’t just reading the atmosphere and blindly conforming. Instead, he carefully assessed the other person and presented only what was necessary, sometimes provoking, sometimes stroking their ego, sometimes taking them by surprise, but in the process, he completely disregarded how that made him look.

“They say that the older kids can persevere, but in your case, you’re doing it on your own accord. You’re not just apathetic to how you’re perceived, you’re apathetic to yourself too. How exasperating,”

she shrugged her shoulders. Even just today, he intentionally manipulated the emotions of those around him. Even though his intentions may be good, his methods were undoubtedly cunning. Not only from the perspective of others, but even from his own perspective.

It was impossible for a boy that could be so considerate and be able to play with so many children to be oblivious to the feelings of others. However, it wasn’t his dislike for himself or his confusion that led to him to make such actions, rather he simply prioritized the result above all else.

“It makes sense now that I think about it. You might not have much time left, but there’s no way someone who could be so gentle with children would have enjoyed resorting to such messy means. You must’ve hated it.”

The sincere words that came out of her were full of consideration for him, and Shinichi didn’t know what face to make in response, but he didn’t try to put on any false display of bravado to hide how he felt, and instead he just appeared like any embarrassed boy. He didn’t expect her to be so full of consideration for him.

“…I don’t think I was being that violent, though.”

When he responded in that vague and indecisive manner, Monica laughed.

──It would bother her if he admitted too much to disliking such violent methods, but she’d seen through too much already for him to fool her, so in the end, he tried to worm his way out by muddling his words──

Or at least, that’s how Monica interpreted it.
His words were so hard to understand, yet the thoughts behind it were so easy to read.
It was a common mindset she often found in people that were older than her and full of care.

“I’m sure. Fu fu. I’ll correct the words I said before rehearsal. You are a boy who can’t help but act like a big brother, no matter who the other person is. The only flaw is being lazy and having no intention to fix yourself, right?”

“…Excuse me for sucking at so many things.”

It was something he himself couldn’t deny, so he just made a sour look and grumbled, but he’d basically accepted what she was saying. That might seem dishonest on his part, but in practice, it made him more honest, making Monica’s cheeks slacken.

“Also…”

“Hmm?”

“I also have the experience of seeing all sorts of kids.”

It was curious if he couldn’t stand being done in so one-sidedly, or that was just him trying to change the topic, but regardless, he asked that question, and Monica became thoughtful for a little before nodding.

“…That’s true. But if I think about it, the way you displayed your hostility to the people that attacked you was something I’d seen plenty of times myself.”

“Hah?”

“When there weren’t any adults that I could believe in, I made myself appear bigger to try and protect the smaller children. I that kid that glared at anyone that approached. Fu fu, when I think about it that way, you become a really endearing knight, don’t you, Shinichi-kun?”

For the first time, Monica meaningfully called out his name and smiled. Shinichi thought he’d changed the topic, only for it to come swinging back. Understandably, he looked like he’d eaten something sour.

“Sigh… This is just like the time with Takeshi when he called me out for not having changed.”

Shinichi sighed and clicked his tongue, muttering that to himself as he shook his head.

“Did you say something?” Monica asked.

“Oh, it’s nothing, just wondering what to think of big-sister-Monica who could understand that much.”

In a tit for tat, Monica found herself choking as realization dawned on her. She’d let her guard down because she thought she had the high ground, but in response, she just smiled with composure.

“Oh, but I’m an adult, you know. This much is normal.”

“That’s a good excuse, but it sounded to me as though you were talking about your own experience, right, nee-chan?”

‘I’m right, aren’t I?’ Shinichi seemed to say with that defiant smile on him.

Monica had intended to flee with that excuse, only for her to be so blatantly exposed, causing that composed adult-like smile to quickly crumble into a half-lidded glare.

Shinichi wasn’t wrong, though. She did have such aspects to her during her childhood, but thanks to how reliable the Sister was as an adult figure, she didn’t become as extreme as Shinichi. But that was precisely why she became concerned about him.

Were there such adults around Shinichi? Though he seemed to understand people, to her, he looked no different from a lost child that didn’t know how to rely on other people.

But she didn’t have the slightest idea how to express that concern to him. Chances were that even if she pointed it out, he would just casually dismiss it.

“…”

“…”

That’s why they seemed to glare at each other.

Intensely too, as though looking the other way meant admitting defeat, but then the ‘big brother’ suddenly lowered his gaze.

He closed his eyes as though to start anew, then straightened his posture and reseated himself.

That was all he did, but the atmosphere around him drastically changed, and the imposing air became gentler all at once.

“Since I’m a big brother and you, a big sister, shall we do away with the bluffs and secrets?”

Even the way he spoke changed to a more refined manner. Though that was only fitting given the age gap between them, it still caught her off guard.

Without waiting for her to answer, he continued.

“First of all, allow me, who started this, to apologize. I’m sorry.”

“…W-Why are you apologizing!?”

Ten full seconds passed, and though he remained seated, he unmistakably lowered his head.

Monica, taken aback by the unexpected turn of events, was bewildered.

In the first place, she didn’t understand what he was apologizing for.

“But don’t worry. No malice or ill intent will reach you. I guarantee it.”

“!”

Suddenly, the boy lifted his face and declared that calmly, taking Monica by surprise as he
delicately and directly pierced the core of the issue. He was basically saying that there was no need for her to worry anymore.

“Ah…!?”

In response, something threatened to surge up and overflow out of Monica. She turned back by reflex to avoid being seen, but even as she clenched her fist and grit her teeth in an attempt to endure it, it was just too late. Something wet touched her cheeks, and her entire body trembled. As her complexion turned pale, her teeth unclenched, and her breathing became unsteady. Though Shinichi’s words were gentle, they still forced her to recognize those feelings she has been avoiding for so long.

—It was so scary.

When the church shook, when the children screamed, when her adoptive parent fell, when that silver bullet chased after her… She didn’t need anyone to tell her that everything was happening just so she could die. But if something had gone wrong, it wouldn’t have ended with just her. The clearer the malice lurking at the concert venue became, the greater the fear and guilt became.

—Scary.

She was the only one who stubbornly chose to refuse to yield in the face of all the threats, yet despite that, she ended up involving so many people. So dense was the malice aimed at her that she wanted to just break down and wail. No wonder the boy asked that before the rehearsal. Now that she understood, she wanted to laugh at herself out of self-mockery. Everything was scary. There was nothing she could trust. That’s why it was too scary for her to be apart the only person she believed could protect her.

—Pathetic.

Despite talking so high and mighty, in the end, she was just a scared little girl. She repeatedly rebuked herself, but there was no stopping the tears that proclaimed that so. Even her trembling chest echoed with emptiness.

She could’ve been killed, and everyone she cared for could have died along with her, yet to make things worse, it wasn’t over just yet. They were still trying to kill her.

Shinichi and Myuhi were trying to protect her, and she knew that they could. Even the Sister herself gave them her approval. Normally, that would have been enough, but this time was different. Because there was a still a problem left unsolved.

──What about him? What’s going to happen to him!?

“…Eh?”

She suppressed that scream that threatened to burst out, but as though someone had been waiting for that, something came down on her.

Her tear-blurred vision couldn’t understand what it was right away, but when a thread-like object wrapped around her neck, she understood what it was.

It was a pendant of some sort.

“…What is this?”

The sound of a clasp securing a gold chain behind her neck resounded.

Only the two of them were here, so it could only be him putting the necklace on her. Besides, wasn’t this the necklace she returned to him?

It wasn’t a mastercraft by any means, but its texture felt soft, and she found herself inexplicably drawn to the simple crescent moon design.

“It’s like a charm.”

A gentle voice came from behind. It was only when she realized he had been silent all this that her tumultuous feelings finally calmed down.

She was grateful that he waited for her to calm down before saying anything. As she looked down her, she saw a crescent moon swaying on her chest.

“Didn’t you say this necklace was precious to you?”

Actually, she didn’t recall him say anything of the sort. In response, Shinichi just casually dropped the history behind it.

“Yes, it’s a memento from the woman who saved my life. She was probably my first love.”

“What!? W-Wait a moment, there’s no way I can’t accept something like this!”

Monica casually ignored his words first due to how calm he spoke, but when she understood what he was saying, she stood up with a jolt and tried to return the necklace. However, Shinichi blinked before faintly smiling and nodding.

“That’s why I’m just lending it to you. Once everything is settled tomorrow, please return it to me yourself. I won’t accept it back any other way, so be sure to see it through.”

Monica blinked in surprise. Shinichi spoke in such a roundabout way, and that smile on his face was so suspicious.

“P-fft… Haha, you’re quite cunning, aren’t you?”

In the end, Monica couldn’t help herself but burst into laughter. Why couldn’t he just tell her straight up to keep herself safe? It was such a roundabout yet cunning way of talking that Monica couldn’t help but laugh. Shinichi just nodded to that, but Monica made another request.

“Fine, I’ll be sure to return it to you, but in exchange, can you stop it with the formal speech? It’s so unnatural that it just creeps me out.”

“Ugh.”

Shinichi bitterly nodded, and Monica laughed even harder. Shinichi muttered to himself, wondering why no one ever appreciates his formal speech, but that just made Monica laugh more.

When they sat back down and faced each other. Monica asked with her eyes what Shinichi meant by his initial apology.

“People from our line of work are used to dealing with violence. It’s normal to us, so while I did notice that you were tense, I failed to understand the extent. As your guards, that’s a mistake on our part. That’s why, sorry.”

Shinichi bowed again and apologized, while Monica found him to be a diligent and faithful boy. She knew she shouldn’t be analyzing him so calmly when he was apologizing to her, but the thoughts just surfaced on their own.

“…Doesn’t seem like he’d change even if I pointed it out, though.”

Such traits seemed deeply ingrained in Shinichi even back at the church. No matter what someone said to him now, it was impossible to change. As an adult, she wanted to reprimand him for various reasons, but as a senior who struggled to bend herself, it was certainly a dilemma.

“…What?”

“It’s nothing. Just that you don’t have to feel obligated because you’re not ordinary. Certainly, most people in the world might fall within the range of ‘ordinary,’ but strictly speaking, who can say they’ve found a truly ‘normal person’ in any world?”

So, she pointed out the next thing she noticed in his words instead. Monica felt apologetic for not realizing it first and sensed the self-blame behind his words, as though he were blaming himself for being abnormal.

“That’s…”

“In the first place, I owe my life to you. And you’re also the one protecting me right now. So puff up your chest and be proud!”

She said resolutely in an attempt to encourage Shinichi.

“You’re going to protect me, right?”

There was trust in Monica’s gentle smile, as well as a trace of defiance, as though to say that there shouldn’t be any need for further words since he was the one who said so himself. Shinichi chuckled.

“I’ll ensure your safety, but as for anything beyond that, we’ll see.”

He said those words with an uncertain mix of confidence and hesitation, though given his nature, he probably just didn’t want to declare anything he wasn’t certain of. Monica wasn’t sure whether she should be reassured by that fact or not, but regardless, she found his sincerity endearing.

“I’ll be counting on you then, Big Brother!”

Monica encouraged him with a full smile, but Shinichi just frowned because he knew what she getting at.

“You’re quite the bothersome older sister, though.”

“Well, thank you.”

That obviously sarcastic on her part, but Shinichi just gave up and sighed.

“Hey, there are no secrets now, right?”

“Yeah.”

The brief response indicated agreement, and his eyes seemed to be waiting for the upcoming question. If that was the case, she had no choice but to ask. Now that she was aware of half the reason she couldn’t sing, she needed to clarify the rest.

“─────Will you die from my singing?”

“Yeah.”

He responded with the exact same tone as earlier, and though the conversation wasn’t in Japanese, there was still no doubting that Shinichi understood. He also knew where she heard it, and that it was stopping her from singing.

“Not in the metaphorical sense too. You must have realized it by now, but I can’t react to your voice or presence unless I’m focused. If your song gets me with my guard down, it’ll likely be enough for me to become defenseless and beaten easily.”

“Despite that you still want to hear my song?”

Ideally, she should be asking if he would still protect her despite that, or perhaps seek an explanation, but while such questions certainly existed within her, Monica was more interested in knowing the answer to that question.

“Of course!”

“…”

It was a question made full of resolve, but Shinichi’s response was made so quickly. There was no unnecessary delay, hesitation, or pretense; he just nodded as though it were a matter of course.

However, the expression he wore wasn’t that of an adult acting grown-up, nor was it a poker-faced feigned indifference, and he wasn’t an overly caring but awkward older brother either.

“I’m a complete amateur when it comes to music, and the songs I heard at the church were just nursery rhymes. Still, I genuinely thought your song was amazing. To say that your heart trembles like that. I was so impressed that I couldn’t help but wonder if there really was such a beautiful singing voice!”

“…”

Shinichi clumsily yet fervently made his point without making any effort to hide the sparkles in his eyes. In fact, he might not have even been aware of the expression he wore. There was a sparkling quality to the gaze he looked at Monica with that made her unable to look away. It was an unexpected response, but it resonated with her strongest feelings and gaze.

─I thought it was beautiful.

“…That should be my line.”

“Huh?”

The voice that passed through her mind roused her memories. That’s right. The reason she chose this path was because she saw someone with eyes like those. If that’s the case, then the answer was already clear.

“Okay. You said it’s fine, so I’m not going to hold back anymore. It might just be a rehearsal, but I’ll let you listen to Monica Chantal’s song with everything I’ve got!”

“…”

The voice, the melody, and the song seemed to fill an endless space.

“────────────!!”

She wasn’t wearing a costume, just casual attire. The stage lacked decoration, and there were no special effects. What existed there was merely the solo performance of a single woman, but it was a performance full of energy.

A world-shaking, beautiful, powerful voice that seemed to reach even the heavens. However, there was no ‘fear’ typically associated with such things. The warmth and gentleness resonated in the hearts of those who listened, permeating them. It captivated everyone, to the extent that even the staff forgot their work.

“Heh, so the rumors about Monica’s live performances being the best were true!”

“Apparently.”

The two guards watched her from the side of the stage, where the scene of her singing without any elaborate setup unfolded. Though their tempos were different, they both swayed their bodies to the rhythm of the song. Myuhi even moved her ears along with the music.

Excited voices of women reached them.

『Yay! It’s Monica’s live performance!』

『I can’t believe we get to hear this during work! So lucky!』

『I rushed here after receiving a support request!』

『Yes, being stationed in Japan sure is lucky… Wait, huh! The line is still open! Uh…』

『Huh?』

『Oh, it’s true… Shit!?』

『C-Commander! Wait, it’s not what you think!』

『I’m so sorry!』

Shinichi ignored the small comedic scene happening in the side, but Myuhi, who was their commander, scolded them with veins bulging.

Shinichi laughed as he enjoyed the song.

After their conversation, Monica returned to the stage with a completely different expression and began a splendid performance. It was a declaration of her serious singing, an unrestrained, exceptional singing voice that showcased her talent as a distinguished songstress.

“…This is already the third song, but is she really going to be fine singing with such intensity when it’s just the rehearsal?”

Shinichi intentionally ignored the incident from earlier. Myuhi had called in support from her own elite personnel, yet the result was this. She should be feeling quite awkward about that, so Shinichi avoided the topic altogether.

“I did ask if it was okay to sing with all her strength for the rehearsal, and her response was, ‘There’s no way my throat will collapse just from singing a couple of songs seriously!’”

“Well, I guess… So, how are you handling being so close to her?”

Smiling with her usual grin, Myuhi asked with a hint of concern. Shinichi said firmly.

“As long as it’s not a surprise attack, I can handle it.”

“Haha, I see. You’ve already come up with a countermeasure huh.”

Although she maintained her usual smile, there was a tinge of worry mixed in her voice. She playfully poked at him with her elbow, and Shinichi shook as though he’d been hit hard.

“Stop it, it hurts. And there’s no countermeasure at play.”

“Huh?”

Myuhi froze at that and turned to look straight at Shinichi, who was genuinely enjoying Monica’s singing and swaying along with the music.

“I’ve tried blocking the sound through various means already, but for some reason, it still reaches my ears. I even tried canceling it out with other sounds before it reached me to no avail. I tried using a barrier that could mitigate the effect, but that didn’t help either. Her song surpasses all of my abilities.”

Yet Shinichi just sounded impressed, and that made Myuhi’s head ache.

“Moreover, she’s really going all out. The difference from the little I barely heard before is like night and day. Ah, it’s exhilarating!”

Shinichi’s complexion was pale despite his admiration. While it was difficult to notice with the sun setting, at this distance, Myuhi could clearly see it.

“…So, in other words, you’re just enduring it?”

“Yeah.”

Was he joking right now? Myuhi desperately suppressed the urge to hit him as she let out a sigh.

“The only way to protect against her song is to either not let her sing or get far away enough.”

“Congratulations on finding that out? …So, what are you going to do about tomorrow?”

“Hmm, just so you know, I have no intention of positioning myself away from her.”

She figured he’d say that, but it still made her head hurt.

What made it more annoying was that this man understood everything yet spoke like that. Though of course, that was probably because his ability decline was within the range of being able to still serve as a guard.

“She might be safe with you, but you’re definitely not safe with her.”

“It’s like having a front-row seat for free. I think it’s worth it.”

He insisted that he was still winning out despite that, and that if anything, the hazard pay made it worth it, leading Myuhi to sigh.

“You look down on yourself too much.”

“Haha, the price is low… But I don’t intend to let just anyone buy me.”

“Oh, really? Then who would you sell yourself to?”

“Well, for now, I only intend to sell my time.”

With a triumphant smile, he laughed with a confidence that seemed to say, “I have no intention of being killed except by natural causes.” However, there was no arrogance in his expression, only a childishness, audacity, and passion that seemed to go on forever.

“Good grief… What makes it doubly annoying this time is that I actually understand you.”

She said while smiling, letting herself be captivated by Monica’s singing. Indeed, this was exhilarating. It felt wasteful to share it with them.

On that day, the songstress Monica Chantal, captivated the members of ‘Nameless’, its strongest spear, and her subordinates, stirring up the two worlds all by herself. The time when she would realize that would likely never come. Nevertheless, it was undoubtedly Monica’s achievement, strength, and a remarkable feat that would change many destinies later on.

Tl Note: Hi guys, due to the Patrons support, I’ll keep this series on life support for now, but if any translator wants to take this off my hands, please let me know. For the meantime, next release will be posted next week.


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10 responses to “I came back but the world is still a fantasy!? – School Field Trip Arc – Act 1: This Is What Happens When I Go on a Trip – 04-100: His Invincibility V (3/3)”

  1. Magnawell Baskus Lardo Kurtzvald Avatar

    Thank you so much for translating it again. I’ve been coming everyday in hope to see if more chapters would be released. Unfortunately, I don’t have the financial conditions to support you with the patreon anymore… I said I was willing to pay to read more, and unfortunately, I won’t be able to keep my word. Thanks for the chapter…

  2.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Thank you so much for continuing to translate. Really like the series.

  3. Raghnall Mordecai Avatar
    Raghnall Mordecai

    Thank you so much for keeping at this, I really love this series.

  4.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Thanks for coming back to this. As promised, I patreoned!

  5. WrongerMonk10 Avatar
    WrongerMonk10

    Thank you for the chapter!

  6.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Yeeeessssssss!!!!!!!!!!!

  7.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Banzai!!! Thank you for the chapter!

  8. Kitsune Avatar
    Kitsune

    Ah, I had given up hope that this will remain translated. Thank you so much for taking your time to continue it again!

  9.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Thank you patreon supporters. You saved us! Please continue this series jiggly <3

  10.  Avatar
    Anonymous

    Thank You Patreon’s!!!!!!!!

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