City Series:Volume5a Chapter3
Chapter 3: City
03/11/1944 – 03/16/1944
The master used that red to write on the parchment.
March 11, 1944
Rosetta’s Journal: Today’s Entry #1
I have a lot to write today so I decided to go ahead and write about what just happened while Lady Beretta has gone to her university
When I made an Ajouter to check on the number of plates while cleaning up after breakfast I heard the bell ring at the front door
I made another Ajouter assuming it was the food delivery but I found Lady Beretta standing there
She had a two wheeled machine known as a bicyclette next to her and she greeted me cheerfully so I have determined she is not a bad person
I asked her why she was there
She said she had wondered how we had been doing and so stopped by on the way to university
She held a large bag in her hand and I immediately let her inside and called for the master
He responded after I pulled on the string for the bell at the bottom of the stairs three times
He had probably been asleep because he had been up late the previous night writing those letters he never sends
Until I could write my journal entries in the first floor study he had written letters there which he only put in the cabinet
But once I became fully conscious I think he moved to the second floor to write them
Lately he has also been writing letters he does send out because he will sometimes leave the house with a sealed envelope
I do not know which he was writing last night because I am not allowed on the second floor
I got sidetracked
The master looked like he wanted to say something when he met Lady Beretta but then he cleared his throat
He was acting weird but the weirdness ended there
After the two of them exchanged a few words they went to the basement storeroom to see the large machine with limbs much like mine
I finished washing all the plates and was making the occasional Ajouter when Lady Beretta called for me
I expect this will be hard to describe so I will simply write out what was said
Rosetta this mansion is too large and I am lost so if you can hear me can you tell me where I am
Our extended vowel sounds as we yelled to each other would probably be better represented by misspelling the words with repeated vowels so I will do that from now on
Please Signe your surroundiiiings
There is a weird deer head growing from the wall and it looks like a hallwaaaay
It sounds like you are in front of the first floor study so I will be there right awaaaay
No waaaait If you are coming bring a sharp knife with yoooou
I selected the easiest to use knife in the kitchen and went to rescue Lady Beretta
My Signe had her standing in front of the first floor study but my Ajouter showed her sitting as she waited for me
As soon as I arrived she grabbed my hand and took me to the basement storeroom while saying they were going to make a contract in blood
The master was waiting for us in the basement storeroom below the courtyard and he had a piece of parchment spread out on a work bench
He took the knife from me and quickly cut his own index finger
The red substance I had seen on that February night flowed from his finger and the master used that red to write on the parchment
After writing some sloppy circles and letters he passed the knife to Lady Beretta who also cut her finger and wrote on the parchment
They exchanged some words in a language I do not know and then the master ordered me to place the parchment on my right hand
I did so
After about five seconds Lady Beretta mentioned that nothing was happening
The master told me to change to another false arm
I was wearing the waterproof brass one but he told me to use the more human one made of ceramic
I did not know what purpose that held because the brass one seemed to work best with my body and the ceramic one seemed to work the worst
Nevertheless I did not question his order so I pulled it out of the first floor storeroom
Lady Beretta seemed to have followed me and she walked into the storeroom
I had just removed my top and was undoing the bolting for my shoulder so we had the following exchange
I am changing but do you need something
Sorry That old man did not explain properly but we need a third party for that contract ceremony and it will only work if your false arm is modeled after a human one Sorry again
Why are you apologizing
I disliked not telling you what this was about and treating you like a machine
But I am a machine
Yes yes All Belle de Marionnettes say that at first How old are you
It has been 35 years since I was made and 15 years since I become conscious
That means you have lived that long and yet have only become this human Rosetta
After she said that Lady Beretta touched my body
My head and most of my torso had become identical to a human through the Coppelia Effect and I felt her fingers stroking my belly as she said the following
You are just like the Belle de Marionnettes I knew in America When you are made to serve as maids your sight hearing and speech are the first things you gain through the Coppelia Effect The sense of taste comes next and that means you have the same internal organ system as a human which give you a metabolism
What does that mean
No matter what you might think you are alive Rosetta You are not a machine
Lady Beretta smiled after that but I had no idea what she was talking about and wondered why someone I barely knew would be determining my characteristics as a Belle de Marionnette
I also wondered why she was giving me that smile that was far from unpleasant
I am a machine
Even if I can become closer to human through the Coppelia Effect I cannot become fully human
Some part of my body will probably wear out before then and I will break
I can become closer to human through the Coppelia Effect but I do not understand why I must become human
All I need to do to live with the master is to cook food and to clean and write my journal entries and to sleep
I do not need any functions beyond those four
Lady Beretta waited for me to finish attaching my arm and then we returned to the storeroom together
In the storeroom I placed the parchment on my hand and said what the master told me to say
I swore not to let anyone else know this secret
When I said that the dried dark red substance burned a mark into the parchment
I had never seen anything like it before
Then Lady Beretta took the parchment and had the following exchange with the master
Now we can both deal with this Lourd de Marionnette without any reservations If you break your promise I will take all of your luck Got that
So that means I can research this Lourd de Marionnette until you have sucked all my luck away
You accepted this pretty easily old man Who are you
I must keep that a secret due to a promise I made with a woman who once rejected me
Well there is no helping that then
Do not act so understanding Oh and you can put your other arm back on now Rosetta
No do not Old man you cannot have her do that You need to work harder to have her evolve into a human Or are you a metalphile
Do not be silly And I am free to do what I want with my own Belle de Marionnette
Is that so Then take a look at Rosetta
Lady Beretta and the master looked at me but I had no idea why she had said that
As I stood there she continued the conversation
Rosetta is no longer your doll old man You told her to put her other arm back on but she has not
The master grumbled and I realized I had obeyed Lady Beretta when she told me to stop instead of obeying the master
I still do not know why that is
But Lady Beretta slapped my shoulder and spoke with a smile
That is how it should be Rosetta Your father would have wanted it this way but you have just forgotten that
How can you be so sure
Maybe it is the blood flowing in my veins The blood of a Lourd de Écrivain and a Belle de Marionnette technician
Her smile changed when she said that
It was an odd smile that had all the elements of a smile but did not feel like one
She then completely ignored the master to speak to me some more
Quit sitting around here and head out with me Rosetta This metalphile old man is obsessed with the Lourd de Marionnette so you can leave him be for a while
Why did you even come to my mansion
What does it matter I have made sure the Lourd de Marionnette is safe and fulfilled my responsibility to the others so now I just have to socialize with the person I met here Personally I cannot believe you will not let such a cute girl out into the city of Paris
Some of what had happened caught in my heart
Namely the father that Lady Beretta had mentioned and the fact that I had obeyed her instruction to stop over the command from the master
I have heard my father died before I gained consciousness
A warm sensation remains in my memories but I do not know if my father wanted me to become human
No one has ever told me to become human and I have never wished to become human
I am a machine
So why am I sitting here waiting for Lady Beretta to return from her university
This is not the feeling of waiting for a guest I must serve as part of my ménage duties
It feels more like waiting to see what kind of ingredients the food delivery person brings by
I do not understand
The only things I do understand are that Lady Beretta knows a lot that I do not and that I understand her even less than I understand myself
That is likely because she exists outside of what I understand but I have not been told to reject things just because I do not understand them so I will not reject her even if I do not understand her
So I am now waiting for her to return from her university
Continually making Ajouter while I wait is one of my jobs
Sorbonne University Student Message Board: Canceled Class Announcement for 3rd Years
Professor Hermes Becarre who has been teaching Class 3-D1, Modern History, will be resigning on March 10 for personal reasons.
A replacement instructor is planned to arrive on March 25.
Class 3-D1 will be canceled until then, so the students are to use that time for self study.
Letter Left by Beretta: To Mallette, My Neighbor Who Doesn’t Know About Our Canceled Class
Hi there, Mallette.
You seem to still be asleep, so I’ll shove this into your room’s boîte aux lettres.
I just rode on over to school on my bike and found class was canceled. Modern History won’t be back until March 25.
The reason why is pretty cool: the professor is retiring due to personal reasons. But we all knew how readily Old Man Becarre would complain about the German army during his lectures.
I’m gonna change the subject.
Oh, yeah. Since I didn’t have to answer roll for you, I’ll make sure to Signe that I returned the payment of lunch money along with this letter.
But, Mallette, you really shouldn’t bring so many guys back with you. I’m your direct neighbor and that’s fine, but the landlord is on the other side of me. You need to keep your voice down. And the girl across from you is single, so she probably doesn’t like it much either. You need to get along with your neighbors.
Oh, and I don’t need lunch or dinner today, so say hi to everyone for me. (If that idiot Phillip shows up and tries to say something, stomp on his foot for me.)
I have some business to take care of. Tell everyone that and tell them I’m helping people and not with a guy like you would be. I’ll be at the library like normal.
Okay, we can chat tonight (assuming you don’t have a guy in your room).
Beretta’s Journal: Today’s Entry #1
Now, then. I’ve come to the library like always, but things are a little different this time.
Professor Hermes was purged a week earlier than he was the other years. This world really is solidly made, so it all flows. Knowing too much about how things go can be a problem in its own way.
I Pointed two men who were fighting on the road on the way here, but what they were fighting over scared me.
One of them was an old baker and the other was an elderly man even older than the baker. But that elderly man was telling the baker to stay away from his bakery tomorrow. Here’s what he said as to why:
“I know you’ll be killed by a robber tomorrow!!”
According to someone who lives in the area, that baker’s only son was taken in by an relative’s family who lives out of the country in June of last year.
That son must have spent 53 years outside of France looking into what happened to his parents. And now he was here as an exchange student and trying to stop his parents from being killed.
At the time, entering Paris had been impossible, so as a child, he must not have been able to do anything even when he had heard about his parents’ deaths.
To him, this was truly a once-in-a-lifetime chance.
There are people like this. But I doubt he’ll get through to his father. That baker would never believe him if this man older than him claims to be his son who should be in another country. Plus, that baker will be brought back to life and killed every year. It’s all meaningless.
But there is something weighing on my mind.
The Resistance members who died because I piloted that Heavy Barrel and Phillip who will die before long are both weighing on my mind. Just as my grandma said, this is real to me even if it will be redone.
So I want to treat this all with care.
I was reminded of that fact when I saw Rosetta today. The people around me will be lost, but I can give some things to Rosetta. Because I was born into a Sein Frau technician family.
Is that only an excuse for what will be lost? Am I a hypocrite? I don’t really care. I know I’m worried about Rosetta and that’s what matters.
Does she want to become human?
Even in this age, the discrimination against Sein Fraus is really bad in America. It isn’t much different from the age I lived in. My grandma must have known that. The American Sein Fraus simply shed tears, cannot become human, and commit suicide. The European Sein Fraus aren’t that bad. But Rosetta’s treatment is awful in a different way. If possible, I want her to think more about a great many things and to become someone I can discuss my ideas with. But if she doesn’t want to become human, then it’s meaningless.
Especially because becoming human means a lot of worry and pain.
I think that is what a Sein Frau should be, but I can’t force it onto her. Because Rosetta doesn’t belong to me. I need to keep that in mind so I don’t get carried away.
Now for a Point.
<The current time is 11:02 AM. A scattering of people are inside the large library.
It is the ideal environment for reading a book.>
I see. Then I’ll stop by the old man’s mansion at 2. It’s the Balleroy Mansion, right? I promised Rosetta I would discuss some things with her this afternoon, so I have to stop by. But when I start reading, I can get lost in my own world and forget to Point the time, so I need to be careful. I’ll jot down a note.
- Make sure to check the time frequently.
Now, time to greet the usual librarian.
<According to the librarian, there is a way to send letters out of the country while avoiding the usual inspection. She told me that was just between the two of us, but it seems she has a route to smuggle letters out of the country.>
My guess is it’s a Resistance route. I have some questions for M. Schrier who wrote the Death Techno Compilation, so it might be worth sending them to the publisher. M. Schrier was in America at this time, but my grandma’s letter had said this:
<So if you were to send a letter to that M. Schrier you look up to (He was in the US at the time, wasn’t he?), since he briefly visited France in ’39, France will use the memories of that time to build up his character and provide a response. And if you ask a question related to France, you should receive a response of considerable accuracy.>
If I sent him a letter about the Attesor Project, France would send me back as accurate a letter as it could. If that works, I might get quite a bit of information that way. France doesn’t know how important the information is. It only wants to prove that there are no holes in the world it created so that it can truly close itself up. Could I take advantage of that and trick France into giving me the information?
But I guess I’ll do everything I can on my own before doing that.
When I compared the previous data with the results of my previous investigations, a lot clicked into place.
The Attesor Project was something that really did exist during the previous World War and it was meant to develop the strongest Barrel. The project was said to have been carried out in the Morvan Mountains. The German army went missing when they invaded there and there are records of the local people hearing sounds of sword fighting in the mountains late at night.
But after the war, the military denied all of the rumors and no evidence remained. And most of the German army’s damage reports were discarded in the Treaty of Versailles, so they can’t be used to prove anything.
And on August 1, 1944, a black dragon attack destroys the nearby village of Herlde and a portion of that mountainous region, so entering the Morvan area was deemed dangerous and a detailed investigation became impossible. Now is the only time to investigate the Attesor Project.
Ironically enough, the Attesor Project is considered no more than a silly rumor due to the influence of M. Schrier’s book. People view it just like Atlantis and the Lost World, so it’s only used in some fun children’s books. That’s the usual pattern, isn’t it? People go missing, civilians find traces of something going on but never see the actual thing, and then the military denies it all.
The Attesor Project follows that pattern, but it isn’t a lie.
Today I learned that the French army has a few hidden units. The most famous is the 0th Heavy Barrel Brigade that moves from battlefield to battlefield as a commando unit, but that isn’t all.
I learned there was also a private unit led by an officer who was former nobility. I have the details in my notes, but the odds are good that something weird like the Attesor Project would be led by an eccentric officer.
If so, I need to visit the city hall and ask if I can view the tax ledgers from that time. I doubt I’ll get permission with the German army in control, though.
Then again, I’m probably the only one investigating this old military project right now.
Even if it existed and had had successful experiments, that project was from 25 years ago even counting from Paris’s current time period. Plus, it was a project that was discarded and abandoned by the military.
In this age, the Germans are working on what they called the Panzer Ritter Project. Lieutenant Colonel Heinz Berge, a hero from the First World War, had his entire body swapped out for prosthetics adapted for a Heavy Barrel to give him reactions speeds 117 times greater than the average Knight Striker.
To be honest, not even an optimistic like me thinks some old tech is going to outdo that German tech. They probably had some decent tech with some decent results, but their research has probably been blown way out of proportion by the rumors and the project was probably never all that credible to begin with.
But if that’s all true, why was Jack McWild so intent on keeping anyone else from getting involved that he said nothing when his wife left him, said nothing to my grandma, and went to France where he was killed?
The story is that he got drunk and fell into the Seine, but everyone in our family is a pretty heavy drinker.
My grandma’s research found there was apparently a knife wound in the tibia of his remains. 1939 was when the war began and France was terrified, so it wouldn’t surprise me if what actually happened was covered up.
I think I’ll look into some things and visit Bourgogne eventually. Before August 1.
At the moment, I have to wonder: Why was Jack McWild trying to build the strongest Heavy Barrel?
It has long been said that Knight Strikers exist to protect people, but I lost my companions as a Knight Striker.
Was that what I got for being a Knight Striker just for fun, or was it because I’m not strong enough as a Knight Striker? That’s a bit of a question for me.
I have a lot of questions. I don’t know where Rose Francisca is right now. She isn’t in Paris. I know she and Jack McWild had their wedding in Paris, but where did they meet?
I bet she’s returned to her hometown, but where is that? I want to check through the city hall’s records.
And there is another mystery: Why does my knowledge from the 90s include nothing about the Balleroy family? I looked it up here and found they were the former Royal Guard Chevalier family that led the regional Chevaliers and their mansion is in a noticeable spot, but that information was entirely missing from what I was taught before arriving.
Was someone trying to hide the mansion’s existence? Or was there nothing there in this age? I just don’t know.
But that’s fine. That at least means I wasn’t taught that Rosetta or the old man die, so I don’t have to worry about them. Oh, Point.
<The current time is 2:01 PM.>
I guess I’ll get going. None of this has been very journal-like and I need to talk with Rosetta this afternoon. Maybe I’ve been worrying about too much recently. I’ll put my notes in my bag and leave.
Guilliaum’s Letter: To a Far Distant Friend
There has been little to report recently, so I had thought I would not have a chance to speak with you.
But, well, now two or three things connected to you have happened in a row, so I felt the need to make a report.
That girl showed up today. At the moment, she has taken Rosetta out into the yard where they are eating snacks.
I put so many restrictions on her concerning Rose Francisca: do not ask about our identities, do not speak about us, and do not write any letters using our real names. And yet she readily asked about my Royal Guard Chevalier family and about Rosetta. I managed to avoid answering, but I’m really not sure what to do. I especially panicked when she asked about the Attesor Project. I hesitated a moment before laughing it off. I just hope she didn’t suspect anything.
But this makes it even harder to invite her to the Resistance. If what Rose Francisca has said is accurate, it does not seem there is anything I can do about this girl for the time being.
And when I look at it like that, well, she seems like nothing more than a troublemaker girl with too much energy, which is kind of funny. I’m probably just projecting our past onto her, but I really don’t think we were ever that much of a nuisance.
She bluntly told me it was my fault that Rosetta isn’t evolving. That kid really needs to learn some manners. Still, I do understand why she is so fixated on Rosetta’s evolution. Belle de Marionnettes are discriminated against in America, so they’re treated as the lowest class.
The mass-produced Belle de Marionnettes in America are mostly treated like toys or slaves, so it is a miracle when they manage to evolve into a human even a little bit. That might have something to do with it, but this is what she said to me:
“If Rosetta wants to remain a machine, that’s fine, but you can’t just let her stay like this without telling her she can become human. You have to let her know that is a possibility.”
It shows how young she is.
But when I look out there, I see Rosetta following that girl around without knowing what any of it means.
What that girl is trying to do to Rosetta is certainly different from me. Taking her outside will expand her possibilities in many more directions than staying inside the mansion.
If I didn’t have this prosthetic right leg…if my leg wound’s Formule had not settled in place while I was in the POW camp, I might have made Rosetta my secretary while I commanded the Resistance.
But the past is the past. I’m really not sure what to do. I’m being tossed around by that girl a fair bit too. Does she really intend to have Rosetta evolve? If so, what do I do? Personally, I kind of feel like leaving this up to destiny. I have lived for so long with a policy of not letting Rosetta evolve, but she started smiling just from meeting that girl.
Rosetta might like that girl more than us.
If so, that girl might be able to correct the many mistakes behind Rosetta’s birth. I’m really, really not sure what to do. Maybe I’m too old for all this.
Maybe this is due to the fear I felt when I saw the changes in tech in this cutting-edge Lourd de Marionnette. I was especially shocked by the high-quality ultra-high-speed conversion Cabinet that is entered through the secondary seat. That would probably let you Recréa in less than 2 minutes after boarding it. The world really is changing. In our day, you would follow all the proper etiquette in battle unless it was an unexpected engagement, but now that tanks and airplanes are becoming the main fighting force, Lourd de Marionnettes are apparently being used more as high-speed strike forces.
If this age has been repeating itself as Rose Francisca claims, then the real outside world is filled with tech 55 years more advanced than this. It makes me want to cry.
Rumor has it that Old Man Heinz who took my right leg is now a lieutenant colonel in the German army, but he’s apparently taking part in the Panzer Ritter Project. I met him during an unexpected engagement, but his family was known as the Kaiser’s right arm and he preferred proper one-on-one battles to an unexpected engagement.
I still sometimes dream about fighting him in accordance with all the etiquette. It always ends with me winning, though. Although in reality I lost and was taken prisoner until the end of the war. I thought I would retire after that, but then I ended up as the Resistance leader just as this war was beginning. I shoved a little too much of the work off onto Old “Blue-Eyes” Jan, though. Maybe that’s because the Balleroy family led the Missel family as the Royal Guard Chevalier.
But that position went away in the people’s revolution and the remaining Chevalier de Paris lost its role during the previous war.
The old traditions are lost, but the people who were around back then don’t want to forget how we used to fight.
Then again, Old Man Heinz is seeing how close man can come to machine in the Panzer Ritter Project. He has apparently increased his reaction speed inside a Lourd de Marionnette more than 100-fold, but he might not be human any longer.
I’m betting he’s Germany’s strongest weapon at this point. I mean, he was already quite the chevalier de chevalier.
Once again, I’m really not sure what to do. This basically means the German army is doing the same thing as a certain project I could mention. A toast to human folly and to Heinz’s health.
And I’ll end this on a more depressing topic. Becarre, who I used to go drinking with to discuss this country, was arrested. I bet it had something to do with being Calamity’s brother, but Old Blue-Eyes said he turned himself in. There were apparently some dangerous rumors and his entire family was being investigated, so he turned himself in. Old Blue-Eyes’s grandson apparently wrote up the records and directly reported it to his higher ups.
I’d really like to meet that grandson at some point. I’m betting he didn’t become an honorary officer in the German army for self-preservation. I’m betting his grandfather set it up so they could handle things like this.
I think I’ll ask his grandfather about it at tomorrow’s gathering. That old man is quite the actor, after all.
Until we speak again.
Heinz Berge’s Journal
Today at 09:30, I had a meeting with the Panzer Ritter Project Research Team at Berlin’s general hospital. I pointed out that I was growing interested in information about the Attesor Project and that it could distract me and disturb my decision-making.
But the research team said my memory activity had bene reduced to the bare minimum required for everyday life plus memories of my military duty and past battles. They said all of my actions are based in that.
That means I will not do anything beyond my everyday activities that is not related to combat. All knowledge and memories I desire are based on combat. That was what I desired when I joined the Panzer Ritter Project.
In that case, my pursuit of the Attesor Project is not based in emotion; it is necessary to strengthen myself.
According to one researcher, “Your memories might include a battle that is making you think of the Attesor Project.”
I have decided to focus my research on discovering which of my few remaining memories that is. So I will use all time not spent in battle investigating the Attesor Project. I have decided I must rid myself of this curiosity before I return to the battlefield.
At 17:04, I left Berlin’s general hospital. I searched for M. Schrier’s Ober Geheimnis Compilation at a bookstore, but it has been banned within Germany and is thus impossible to acquire.
At 18:21, I returned to the barracks. Nothing more to report.
Letter Left by Mallette: To Beretta, My Neighbor who is Staying Out so Late
To my sworn friend Beretta,
Let me make one thing very clear up front: I have not been bringing any guys home lately.
Please refrain from making such flagrant false accusations in the future. The noise at night has nothing to do with guys; I am practicing the violon I need for my major!! How could you possibly mistake that beautiful music for something like that? I’ll admit I’m pretty inexperienced, but…oh, curse him.
That guy said I played “such wonderfully emotional music”, but when I played the exact same way in class this afternoon the professor called it “horrific” and gave me a G.
But let me get to the point of this letter, Beretta.
Last night, Mr. Phillip asked me for some advice. Advice about you. That’s all I’m saying. I won’t tell you anything more. Think for yourself about how important that is. And he gave me a map, so come pick it up. Bye.
Rosetta’s Journal: Today’s Entry #2
A lot of important things happened today but I cannot write about most of them in this journal
Lady Beretta ordered me to write them in a letter and send them to her
So I will only write about what I saw out in the yard this afternoon
What happened at dinner I will write about in a letter
At around four Lady Beretta and I were sitting on a sheet and looking down at the city of Paris from the hill
I always mow the grass between spring and summer in that yard but I had never just looked down at the city before
As I did there was always some small change occurring in the city
Whenever I noticed one and asked about it Lady Beretta would politely tell me what it was
The small lights I occasionally saw were the light reflected off of the windows being opened or closed
The smoke coming from low areas were a sign of someone cooking at a bistro or restaurant
The smoke coming from high areas was a sign of someone cooking in an appartement
What looked like white flags along the streets were laundry hanging out to dry
The quiet sounds I heard from the city were the horns of cars
The birds flying above the city were pigeons being kept as pets
I recorded those things with Signe for the first time because I could not tell why they were shining or smoking just with an Ajouter
I have been to the city a few times but that was only at night to visit the night market next to the Boulogne Park with the master
I always waited outside the market and then helped the master carry things back once he returned
I have seen people
A lot of people pass by in front of me when I am waiting for the master at the night market
A few of them would have a few other expressions but most of the people are in a hurry to buy food just like the master and me
Most of the people who pass by are just like me
They can walk and they can carry things and they can speak
That means that is enough
I looked at Lady Beretta while recalling my memories of what I saw in the city
She said that the people I saw at the market were not just like me
She said they have functions that I do not understand
I asked her if I needed to be that high functioning for my life
She did not seem to understand my question
She had explained what becoming human meant and it meant become higher functioning and I do not need those extra functions for my life
When I explained myself again while following along with my memories Lady Beretta immediately gave the following explanation
Becoming human is not about function It is about your will or well you know
No I do not know
Umm you have a sense of taste right That was because you wanted to cook delicious food right
Yes I sensed it was necessary after everything I cooked nearly killed the master for a month straight
Hm so that old man has put more effort into this than I thought But that is not the point Think about it Rosetta Your sense of taste is your own function but you use it to cook delicious food So what happens once you have the food with the flavor you want
I serve it to the master
Not what you do with it Umm I am asking you how it makes you feel
How it makes me feel
Do you feel like cheering or get really excited or think you must be some kind of genius after it all works out the way you wanted it to
No it is only natural that it turns out that way
Only natural huh And yet I have never had it turn out that way Not even once Oh but I am getting sidetracked So what does that old man say after he eats it
He always says it was delicious
And what if he did not say that
He always does
Think about it When you serve him dinner tonight he might get up from the table without saying a word
He would not
If I mixed something disgusting into the food while you and the old man were not looking I am one hundred percent certain he would do just that
Please do not do that
I said that to Lady Beretta even though it was not necessary
After all she does not seem like the person who would do something like that
But I still said it
I stopped her and I stopped my own imagination
I do not know why but I reflexively wished to stop Lady Beretta when I imagined the master getting up from the table without saying a word
When I could not say anything more Lady Beretta held my shoulders
She apologized but I do not know why
I think she was apologizing because I fell silent but that silence was due to my inability to control my thoughts which makes it my responsibility
She does not need to apologize for something that is my responsibility
And yet I listened to her apology in silence
She said the following
I am sorry Rosetta There has been so much on my mind lately that I might have been too mean there I am sorry but I thought I had to say that to get you to think about it Rosetta you have gone numb to what it means to enjoy something For one thing it would be pretty funny if that old man still said it was delicious
He has no idea how to adapt and I bet his sense of taste is half dead but I bet you have a decent repertoire of dishes because you thought he would enjoy it and not because you needed something to kill the time
Yes it happened when I ran out of ingredients from making the same dish and had to make something else
That old man enjoyed it in a different way right
How did you know
You look like you have a wide repertoire of dishes so you must be able to detect those minute changes in his enjoyment of the food But at the same time you have gone numb to it and you seek it out That is not an improvement in your functionality It is becoming more human And wow I am getting preachy here
Lady Beretta smiled bitterly as she grabbed my hand and pulled me to my feet
We folded up the sheet and walked back to the kitchen where she said the following
If you decide you really do want to be human I will help you You probably will not know if you do for a while yet but keep that in mind Rosetta
I still do not know what it means to become human but that possibility must exist inside me
I think I will start writing letters
Lady Beretta said I only had to write them and put them in the blue boîte aux lettres outside the mansion early the next morning
I will use that letter to Signe what it is I enjoy
This will be the first time I have shown someone else my Signe
As I was thinking about what to write a question occurred to me
Lady Beretta told me to write about what I enjoy but are there things she enjoys
I want to ask her that and I also cannot help but think about when she seems to be lost in thought
If there is something she wants to say I wish she would say it
I will write my letter now but it seems that will be my last job for the day
March 12, 1944
I didn’t have class today, so I went to the library again. I nearly passed by that bakery again, but I made a point of avoiding it. I don’t want to Sign or Point in front of that bakery for a while.
Now, the librarian lady let me look through the city hall’s archives. I’d like to say that makes me lucky, but most of the information is useless.
And I also secretly asked her to send a letter out of the country without being inspected. I think I’ll send some questions about the Attesor Project to the publisher of M. Schrier’s Death Techno Compilation and…yes, it might be good to send them some of the information I’ve found. I really don’t want to make a big deal out of this personal stuff, but I want to gather as much information as possible.
Also, a letter from Rosetta arrived this evening. It was about what happened yesterday.
Namely, about our discussion of what she enjoys from dinnertime.
The writing was awkward, but I could tell she grasped what happened pretty well. She must be the type who mostly just Points, unlike me. If you’re being kind, that makes her modest. If you’re being unkind, it makes her easily influenced by her surroundings.
But it was interesting seeing that dinner through someone else’s eyes.
All I did was feed the old man the (unintentionally) disgusting hors d'oeuvre I had made, let him suffer for a bit, and then fed him the plat de résistance that Rosetta made.
Eating Rosetta’s cooking after that bad cooking was sure to get him to voice his thoughts on it. But the letter made it clear she was actually pretty worried about it. I’ll quote her with a Point:
<I know the master can find food to be disgusting because he plainly said so when he ate the food Lady Beretta made
What would I do if he felt that way after eating what I made>
I have to wonder if she isn’t used to being rejected. But there’s no helping that. No one would want to reject her cooking.
But the old man did praise her cooking, so I was satisfied.
Rosetta was relieved and then she crouched down.
She made sure to write about that.
<Strength left my body and I found myself sitting on the floor
I did not know what had happened but I could not stand up
Nevertheless I felt relief in my heart and was glad about what had happened>
That’s what it means to enjoy something, but I wonder if she remembers it properly. Well, I’m sure it’s fine. Since she felt worried and then relieved, she’s clearly got pretty good basic functions.
It’s learning those feelings that makes you human.
I kind of understand why I’ve been so fixated on her.
I must want to find some kind of answer in this world.
My life in France is that of an outsider and also under the German army’s rule. Even when I’m viewing the archives, I don’t have free access to the deepest levels. Any letters sent out are normally inspected and censored. The city markets are gradually shrinking. And then everything will be Formatted come August.
But I kind of feel like that mansion is cut off from all that. Perhaps because Rosetta doesn’t know about the outside world, I almost forget about the war while I’m with her and she’s probably the only person in the city I can really relax around.
I need to give this some thought.
I think I can make her human, but I don’t want to force her. I want it to happen because she wants it.
So I first have to teach her what it means to become human. And once she is properly informed about the possibility, I will leave the decision with her.
Now, then. Come to think of it, I need to pick up that map from Mallette today. If I’m going to investigate the Attesor Project, I need a map of Bourgogne where the lab was. I want to say something to Phillip who acquired that old map for me, but I think I’ll find another excuse and have everyone get together.
Yes. After that, I’ll write letters to Rosetta and the old man and then go to sleep. I especially want to tell that old man to let Rosetta out of the mansion and to let her do a lot of things.
Beretta’s Letter: To Rosetta
To my beloved friend…or whatever,
Yahoo. Your letter arrived and there was nothing wrong with it. It was quite good.
Now, listen. Letters are used to convey and confirm the things that you and the recipient need to know. Your letter fulfilled that role just fine. It was far better than the unbelievably crude ones from my friend whose promiscuity might as well be a national treasure…actually that isn’t giving you enough credit. Yours was legitimately good and not just good compared to hers, so don’t worry.
I will not throw out your letter and I will not forget about it.
I was worried you might find me to be something of an annoyance. I can be pretty cowardly.
Are you looking out at the city? Are you going out in the yard and walking around?
Foxes and wild rabbits live in Boulogne Forest, so you might see some on the mansion hill. I spotted a fox hole on the slope when I was there. So if you do see something that isn’t human in the yard, use an Ajouter to look at it. It is probably the same as you, so if you don’t do anything to displease it, it should happily leave.
Don’t forget that there are always a lot of beings other than you around you.
Um, I keep getting really preachy with you, don’t I? I think I’m turning into an old lady now that I’m past 20. Ugh. But now that I have the old man’s permission, I’ll stop by to play with you from time to time. There’s a lot you need to know.
There really is a lot I want to tell you, so I think I’ll be by before long.
We live in dangerous times and I could get arrested any day, but let’s try to enjoy this.
I do have some advice about letter writing. Or about writing in general, really.
There are rules you need to follow when writing. Your letter doesn’t follow them and…um…simply put, it’s a pretty major flaw.
I don’t want to dump a bunch of complicated stuff on you at once, so I’ll teach you bit by bit. When I write, there’s always a “.” at the end. ←This
First of all, I want you think about what that means.
Have you thought about it? Now for an example. In your letter, you quoted me like this:
“You do not seem to cry at times like this but I will remind you of this You have the right and duty to remember it Old man you know what I mean right”
Try reading that out loud. Could you read it all in one breath?
You couldn’t, could you? Do you know why not? Because when I said it, I didn’t say it all in one breath. So the way you have written it makes it hard to tell where you are supposed to pause for a breath.
To make it easier to read, you would have to use a Signe to copy down exactly what I said, including the breaths.
But writing down “breath” each time would be lame, right? So we use a symbol to indicate a breath. I’ll write it out using that rule.
“You do not seem to cry at times like this but I will remind you of that. You have the right and duty to remember it. Old man you know what I mean right.”
That “.” tells you when to take a breath. Now read it out loud while putting in the breaths.
Do you get it now? Even when we read silently, we still take breaths in our head. When you speak with the old man, you aren’t just speaking continuously, right? You make sure to pause to breathe and to think, don’t you?
Think about it. If you do, I think you should know where to put the “.”.
The general rule is to put a “.” where you need to take a breath. ←Like this
Wow, this P.S. has gotten long. Bye for now. I want to speak with you soon and there might be things you can teach me.
Oh, and you also wrote this in your letter:
<I want to ask her that and I also cannot help but think about when she seems to be lost in thought
If there is something she wants to say I wish she would say it>
Thanks. Yeah, that’s all.
Heinz Berger’s Journal
Today at 10:02, a messenger arrived at the barracks. I will leave here on the 16th and I will arrive in Paris on the 20th. I will spend 2 months teaching basic training there using a weakened Grösse Panzer in order to improve morale. During that time I will also receive the 73rd and 74th Panzer Ritter Project surgeries.
The messenger gave me some information from the Western Front. According to General Rommel who commands the 352nd Infantry Division which includes my platoon, the Allies will make their next major move in mid-June. He suspects they intend to make a landing at the beaches of Normandy.
“But the Führer believes the Allies will cross the Strait of Dover to land at Calais instead, so there is apparently some conflict of opinion.”
At 15:22, I called the 1st Aide and told him about this mission and that my return to the battlefield had been delayed by another 2 months.
At 16:34, an intelligence officer visited. He questioned me about whether or not I believed in the existence of the Attesor Project and what I would do if I did believe in it. As I had previously decided, I told him I intended to investigate the Attesor Project. He saluted and left. I predict they will take some sort of action eventually.
At 20:09, I arranged my things. I once more found the photograph among them. In it, an adult and child are smiling in front of some flowers.
I am unsure if my curiosity has been triggered by those two. But I did not throw out the box containing the photograph and I returned it to my things. Nothing more to report.
March 16, 1944
1: Heinz Berge is Coming to Paris
Some information came in from the Resistance in the east. Someone very unpleasant is coming to Paris. I just hope he isn’t staying long and that he doesn’t visit me.
Well, I haven’t seen him since I was taken prisoner in the Morvan Mountains. And I heard he has almost no memories after the Psyche Outer surgery to go along with his mechanical body, so he might not remember me.
2: Small Scale Preparations by the Paris Resistance
The Western Front has come to a standstill. We should assume that means the Allies are preparing for a major attack. And it must be such a major attack that they can’t tell us about it. My guess is it will happen in June once the season has settled down. This would probably be easier if Rose Francisca would prophesy it for me.
I need to have the Resistance make some simple publicity work to inform the people of Paris about the presence of the Allies.
3: That Girl is Visiting
Perhaps because she knows nothing of my past, she has been sending me letters and visiting a lot lately.
She seems to think of herself as Rosetta’s tutor, but it looks to me like she is able to relax when she talks with Rosetta. Since Rosetta knows nothing of the outside world, speaking with her might help relieve the tensions of daily life.
German Army General Headquarters Telegram: To the Paris Branch
We have revealed the general outline of the Attesor Project that the Geheimnis Agency has been investigating for some time. During the previous war, the French army performed research and development on what they called the strongest Panzer. This was known as the Attesor Project, but they scrapped it for unknown reasons after completing it. The belongings of those involved have revealed that the results of the research remain somewhere in France. We request that the Paris Branch in central France investigates this matter. We will soon send over the related documents. The current objective is to search out someone who was involved in the project, but most of those in the French army had their memories completely erased. You will instead need to search out information from those not in the army. We will search for related information in the German army records from the time. And as previously reported, Army Lieutenant Colonel Heinz Berge will take charge of your Panzer training when he arrives. Review the related documents and prepare accordingly. This training will also be a show of force against France. By revealing our Panzer Ritter Project in progress, we can increase our own morale. Over.
Heinz Berge’s Journal
Today at 09:00, we left Berlin in a private car. We traveled west on the Autobahn.
At 15:32, we arrived at the 18th Army Barracks in Belgium to stop for the night.
At 16:41, I found Volumes 1-8 of M. Schrier’s Ober Geheimnis Compilation on the bookshelf at the restaurant next to the barracks. After some negotiation with the manager, I purchased them with German currency. I will begin investigating once I arrive in Paris.
At 18:35, the 1st Aide and I accompanied the Western Front and discussed the Allies’ next attack.
At 20:02, we ended our discussion. As scheduled, I will arrive in Paris on the 20th.
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