“I can’t believe even Ruona is talking like everything is normal. To think that a bomb like this would be dropped at me right at the last moment. I don’t even…” Frire said.
“Ahaha, for better or for worse, being around Shinichi-san means having your common sense broken,” Aristel said.
The events that unfolded in this short time, the fake Shinichi and all the revelations, made it hard to accept everything all at once.
From the mysterious woman who showcased her incredible combat abilities and her connection to Shinichi, to the reasons behind his actions when he went off on his own and the outcomes, as well as the secrets surrounding the servant’s nature and abilities. There were just too many things to process.
While Aristel wore a wry smile, it was clear that everyone, especially Frire, was exhausted.
“Oh? Does that mean you don’t want your reward information from fighting so well?”
The servant fox laughed upon seeing that, and with a smile reminiscent of her master, asked that question despite knowing their answer.
Veins popped on Myuhi’s forehead, but Aristel and the others calmed her down.
“…That depends on the information, right?” Frire nodded hesitantly.
She was already overwhelmed, but the information was just too important. Hopefully, it wouldn’t be a cause for more worry, but with all eyes gathered on the fox servant, it seemed she was about to give them just that.
“What about a part of the truth behind the mysteriousness of my master’s power?”
Silence filled the hall.
They couldn’t be faulted for that. For while everyone knew about his impressive combat abilities, they also knew that it didn’t make sense given Shinichi’s Status, so they were understandably curious about his secret.
“…Is it fine for you to tell us that?” Myuhi said.
“It’s just a part of it. I haven’t been told not to say anything, so it’s fine too,” the servant said.
They found it strange how the servant acted as though this wasn’t important information, but curiosity won out, and they lent an ear.
“My master’s power is fully manually regulated because it can’t be activated without his conscious effort,” the servant said.
“…You seem quite smug while saying all that but you’re not making one lick of sense,” Myuhi said.
The servant puffed up her chest and talked proudly, while Myuhi just looked at her dubiously, unable to understand.
That was true for everyone else too.
But the servant seemed to have expected that, so she just nodded and continued.
“I’m sure you don’t. Let’s use the Status that you use as an example then. In your case, that power is always active because it is semi-automatically regulated. Of course, you don’t use such powers in your day-to-day life normally, and you don’t put too much strength when doing normal stuff either, but when you want to use it, you can easily handle it, right?”
“Well, yeah. Status is always active, so that part makes sense, but what do you mean it’s semi-automatically regulated? As you said, we don’t use our powers normally, and we don’t put too much strength when doing random chores either, so doesn’t that mean we’re always regulating it ourselves!?”
Myuhi snapped back at the servant, demanding to know which part of that was automatic, but another voice answered.
(You are wrong about that, Myuhi Ruona)
“…What are you talking about, AI-kun?”
Myuhi looked unhappy to be taken from an unexpected direction, but Shirayuki nonetheless began explaining.
(For example, let’s say there is a person with a Strength rank of A. It’s a well-known fact that the actions of that individual won’t constantly exert A-rank strength. Each rank merely represents the maximum value, the value that is achieved when giving it your all, but the value won’t be reached without conscious effort. The same applies to other attributes, except for stamina. However in all of that, the output is being semi-automatically regulated.)
At that, everyone understood.
“To put it simply, you just need to think about it when you want to unleash your full power. Holding back a little feels more or less the same too.”
That was proof that their strength was being semi-automatically regulated.
Though the fox didn’t say that out loud, there was a triumphant look on her face that said just that.
“Shirayuki-san, if we’re not consciously trying to use our power, how much of our rank can we exhibit?”
(It would vary from person to person, but a person’s rank when acting without intent is usually about a rank or two lower than their Status.
In day-to-day life, a person would further adjust their power, speed, and endurance as needed for each specific situation, so the term “semi-automatic regulation” is indeed a fitting description.)
“After all, people naturally learn how much strength they need to put to do something,” Aristel said.
Holding a cup. Carrying luggage. Running lightly. Catching a thrown ball.
They adjust their performance according to the output they unconsciously imagine for each of these actions.
So even when it’s within their own stats, it can still be described as semi-automatic to a considerable extent.
“I see. After all, no matter how talented a person is, everyone’s Status when young is weak. That’s why the first thing we learn is how to regulate our strength for day-to-day life,” Frire said.
“Even when your rank goes up, as long as you have that sensation from your youth, it will be very hard for you to mess up. Now that I think about it like this, the concept of our strength being semi-automatically regulated is certainly correct. It’s not an expression I’ve heard of before, though,” Aristel said.
“Well, you could also say that the normal human functions are merely being adapted to Status,” the servant said.
While everyone else was shocked from being enlightened, the fox servant suddenly dropped that audacious line.
“The way you talk really is just like your master – in the way you say stuff only to deny it yourself…” Frire said.
“Ufufu, thank you for the compliment,” the fox servant said.
There was no mistaking it. She was definitely his servant.
(So, in other words, your master has to regulate all of his abilities manually, and on top of that, has to willfully activate them to be able to exhibit his power?)
The room fell silent at the conclusion drawn by the AI.
Not only did the boy have to pay attention to those things they usually didn’t care about because they were being semi-automatically regulated, but even the weakest strength he could exhibit had to be activated willfully on his part.
In other words, he was much slower than other people in activating his power, and he took much more effort to regulate it as well.
Meaning he was basically defenseless when he wasn’t using his power.
All eyes gathered on the servant for confirmation.
“Yes, that is exactly the case,” the fox servant said.
And she readily nodded as though she had been waiting for that.
She even reminisced about a certain event as though it was something funny.
“That’s why, from time to time, when he lets his guard down, he would step on something sharp in his own room, bleed, and roll about in pain. Really, he can be quite clumsy. Well, that’s endearing in its own way,” she said.
But while the fox servant laughed, everyone else was shocked at how fragile the boy really was.
It was curious if it had merely been a bluff, but he always seemed so calm no matter what attacked him.
Everyone here knew what kind of person he was, yet they have never seen him visibly wounded.
And yet that same boy could actually be hurt like just some normal guy doing something so mundane.
The unsettling asymmetry of it all sent an inexplicable shiver down their spines.
“So, in other words… If he were to let his guard down, Nakamura is really just an All D?” Frire said.
“Nope. Didn’t Shirayuki say it? He’d be one or two ranks lower,” the fox servant said with amusement, but everyone else just got chills.
That absurd power of his needed to be willfully activated, while the Status that should protect him was at the weakest possible level.
If so, then… His normal rank was in fact All F.
That was the lowest Status possible in Garesto.
A frailty and powerlessness equivalent to a baby.