Kamisama no Memochou:Volume 7 Chapter 6

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Chapter 6[edit]

The starless night sky had the color of a TV switched off.

The lights shining through the windows of the buildings, the neon LED lights on the trees planted on the pedestrian pathway, and the vehicle headlights packed in front of the station; these corrosive lights shone upon the sky from the ground. A singing voice with bell chimes could be heard from somewhere, and it was the Christmas song I had heard a few times this Winter.

However, there was a river of darkness splitting us from the world of light, and that was the railway.

“This isn’t bad.”

Alice grabbed at the hem of my coat, and muttered as she stared opposite the track.

“How pretty. It really is appropriate to dub this the Holy Night. This name has broken free from many beliefs, merely retaining its actual name. I do feel this name really signifies the nature of the night of December 24th.”

“Nature?” I asked Alice. I thought that she, so familiar with the Bible, would mock the Japanese for their partying during the Holy Night, so such comments surprised me.

“Don’t you know that Christmas Day actually has no relevance to Christ himself?”

“Ah…I think I heard of it.”

“There are many speculations as to why Christ’s birthday was set as the 25th of December. One of it was that the Christians during the Roman Empire wanted to attract the worshippers of Mithra, god of light, and set their day of worship as Christ’s birthday instead. In any case, Christmas is already a Winter Solstice Festival, the original holiday for the Northern Hemisphere’s farmers to devote their offerings.”

“So it’s the same as the Labor Thanksgiving Day.”

“More or less.”

Alice raised the doll in her clutches, and said with a faint smile,

“The sun that graces the land for a year dies on this day, and a new sun is born on the following day, so this is a day celebrating death and revival. There’s no need for the Father, Son, Holy Ghost, Divine Mothers, three Magi of the east, and the pitiful aliens getting involved in some galactic explosion far above the skies of Bethlehem; this night itself is already sacred. Us atheists can just party as we please.”

“I see.”

Alice’s words throbbed at my parched soul, causing it to echo somewhat.

This was really strange. Just 20 hours and so, I was involved in a gun fight, and now I’m together with Alice, staring at the streets of the Christmas Eve. Her voice just lacked a sense of reality for a while, probably because of the black veil. She, dressed in mourning clothes, had half of her body in the world of death.

It was the time when the detective was dressed in mourning clothes.

This was an indication that it was the moment to dig up the dead’s grave, and to make up and explain with the shame and pain of the living. This indicated the end of the incident, a festival of death and revival. Even though it was a miracle, nobody hoped for it, and nobody discovered it.

Alice held my hand, and walked on. There was a flight of stairs on the uphill slope to the left side of the pedestrian pathway, and we climbed it together, ducked under the yellow cordon tape, and entered the dark park. It seemed the time in the park had stopped, and everything was frozen. This included the forests devoid of light, the street lamps that were extinguished, the tents occupying the darkness, the barren grasslands, the bare sandy ground, and the blood trails on the metal board.

Alice stood on it, staring at the ominous black figure spreading below her feet. I tried my best to recall the sight of Ginji-san who collapsed here, but I couldn’t. My memory was the product of something already bleached by the many things that occurred.

“I checked the surveillance visuals with you.”

Alice stared at the blood, and muttered.

“We know that there wasn’t a tool that could chop off a human head being moved in and out of the park. Katsuragi Kenji was still alive when he returned to the park.”

I nodded.

“In that case, Katsuragi Kenji was beheaded in this park, and the tool is now in this park.”

“…Where?’

I gulped, and looked around in the darkness.

Alice merely pointed below us.

“This metal sheet used for construction is used as a guillotine blade, so nobody else found out. The bladed part that beheaded should have some blood left behind, but this time, the blade is where the corpse fell on, so the truth was hidden in this fact.”

I was left speechless, and looked back and forth between the blood and Alice’s face.

“N-no, what are you saying? Using the metal sheet as a blade? How many kilograms do you think this is?”

“Given the size of this thing, I guess it’s probably around 200kg or so.”

“200kg? How is it possible to lift such a heavy thing for a guillotine? It’s impossible!”

“And I never said that it was lifted by head. I said that it’s a guillotine. Look.”

Alice backed away from me and walked away from the metal sheet. There’s a little H-shaped ditch, something I found when I came to investigate with Alice.

“What…is this?”

“The matching marks should be on the other side, under the metal sheet.”

“So what’s going on?”

“These are marks of a guillotine pillar.”

“Pillar? Where—”

Startled, I shut up. I could see metal wires through the gap in the forest behind Alice. Right behind the metal fence was the railway.

During that time, Alice found a hole just large enough for someone to put an arm through the metal fence, and on the other side of the hole was an abandoned rail.

The rails were the long and narrow metallic pillars with sawed off H-shape protrusions.

“Yes, thsee rails can be used as a pillar for a blade to slide down.”

With an anguished voice, Alice said, and looked down again.

“The edges of the metal plate have holes to hook onto and move it, and they probably put some rope in through them.”

Erect a rail, fasten the metal plate between the rails, raise a metal sheet from both sides, place a corpse right below it, let go of it, and a blade 200kg heavy will slide down several meters.

“Alice, wait.”

I could not stop myself form shivering, and grabbed my shoulders, eking out a voice, asking,

“I understand—what you’re getting it, but to do this…”

Alice raised her hand to cut me off. At wherever she was pointing it, behind my shoulder, there were footsteps to be heard stepping on wilted grass.

I turned around, and found the person making this sound slowly move from the darkness into this dim light. I let out a dry breath, and saw Mori-san with some band-aids on his bald hand, his oil-stained down jacket was buttoned firmly, and a little bag tucked under his armpit.

“…Yo, Narumi. And then, erm.”

Mori-san turned his eyes towards Alice, who was behind me.

“Nice to meet you. I am the NEET detective, speaker of the dead.”

Alice answered with a really tender voice. Mori-san curled his lips, and nodded,

“Well, Tetsu and the others did mention this, but I never thought I would meet the real one—ah, no.”

Mori-san shrank back due to the cold, and scanned the dark park. At this place, both the lights in the sky and above the ground were too distant.

“Actually, I did feel that someone was already waiting was waiting for me.”

Alice stepped forward beside me, close enough for me to feel her warmth, and again grabbed my coat.

“I want to be sure of one thing.”

“What is it?” Mori-san muttered.

“For the rope, did you use vinyl string for it?”

“Yeah. There’s a whole pile of them left in Ginji-san’s hut. Rope made of vinyl strings are rather sturdy.”

Mori-san’s explanation stabbed right at my chest.

“So it was you, Mori-san.”

I could no longer say anything. If it were as Alice had said, the culprit behind this was not just a single person, and not Mori-san alone. There had to be two people to lift the railways, 2, or even 4 people to pull the rope, and someone to bring Ginji-san’s corpse to hold behind at the bottom of the blade—

“Yes. This is the answer, Narumi.”

Alice placed her hand on my back.

The ones who chopped off Ginji-san’s head were the homeless who gathered that morning, Ginji-san’s friends. How? How’s that possible?

“But isn’t that strange? If that’s the case, Major should have seen what happened, right? He’s the first one to arrive, but when he arrived, he said that the corpse was already beheaded.”

I really wanted to take back what I just said.

Was Major an accomplice too? Did he participate in the beheading?

Alice lifted her head at me, and shook it.

“Major did lie. This lie caused us to make a a decisive, basic error. However, his lie was not what you think.”

“Then…then, what is it?”

“Major wasn’t the first to discover the corpse.”

I stared at Alice’s lips, reflecting on what she meant.

“The first one to appear at the park in the visual at 4.30am wasn’t Major.”

“That will be me.”

Mori-san said.

“I was the first to find out, and call Major.”

I stared at Mori-san’s face. So the order was reversed. It wasn’t that Major notified Mori-san and the others. Major received Mori-san’s call, and contacted me immediately. Before he could enter the park, Mori-san and the others had let down the guillotine blade.

“When Major arrived…we have completed everything.”

“In that case—at the very least, Major lied to hide the crime Mori-san and the others did. Isn’t he an accomplice here?”

I muttered, and Alice shook her head.

“You’re wrong. Don’t you understand? Major took fingerprints and bullets from Katsuragi Kenji’s corpse right in front of them. If the police asked, and he answered honestly, what will happen?”

“Ah…”

“That’s why he lied, saying that he came first, before the homeless friends did.”

Alice looked down at the blood at the feet, and continued muttering,

“Major doesn’t know the truth behind the beheading, so this lie has no significance. He just made a little lie because he didn’t want his friends to be harassed by the police.”

But it was because of this lie that hid the truth. Alice added on with an almost inaudible voice. I bit my lower lip, suppressing this feeling of disgust, and turned towards Mori-san.

“Why…why? Why did you, and everyone too? Why did everyone chop off Ginji-san’s head? Were you lying to me? Why did you do such a thing?”

Mori-san’s face remained frozen, and he looked away from me, remaining silent.

“Because this is his wish.”

Alice’s frosty voice rang beside my ear, and I stared at her face in disbelief.

“…Eh?”

“This is Katsuragi Kenji’s wish, and his friends simply fulfilled that wish.”

“W-what? His own wish? The head—like that?”

“Think about it. Didn’t you see the corpse for yourself? His hands were holding onto his muffler, right?

Because of Alice’s words, that blood-curdling, freezing sight that morning that looked so surreal, devoid of all color, and something I didn’t want to recall became more striking.

“Ah…”

Right. It’s true that the hands of the decapitated body were holding onto the muffler. The memory unlocked more memories, linking them together. This was the final question Alice asked at the roof of the pitch black abandoned building. She said she just wanted to know something, and for the sake of knowing this answer, she became antagonistic towards Major, and sullied his honor as a soldier.

Was Katsuragi Kenji wearing a muffler?

Ginji-san—removed his own muffler, and made it easier to chop his head off? I shivered at this terrifying notion, and it felt as though I found my body was amputated and replaced with crude concrete.

Then Ginji-san’s head—

“I put it in this bag.”

Mori-san spoke with a terse voice.

“Even when we’re holding dirty bags, nobody will pay us any mind, or rather, I should say that nobody will care about…”

The final words vanished from Mori-san’s mouth.

“So you cremated him at the incinerator at your workplace or somewhere?’

Mori-san lifted his head upon hearing Alice’s question. His eyes sparkled in the darkness.

“…You really do know everything. It’s really terrifying…I took it to the rubbish incinerator of the reclamation plant. It took me about a week.”

Mori-san lowered his head as he looked at the bag under his armpit. That was—the ashes of Ginji-san.

“So you have already completed your duty.”

Why did Alice sound so kind that her words were about to melt?

“You cut the head off, hid it, and waited until the Holy Night to to bring it here and fulfil the wish. Is that correct?”

Mori-san gently hugged the bag with both hands, and stared at it.

“Right. I don’t know whether he’ll be happy or not. When I found him on that day, he was a lost cause. He had an eye beaten out, holes on his neck, and he was bleeding…he was still able to say this much…”

I really wanted to cover my eyes, and kept shaking my head, not knowing what I was trying to deny. Why did he leave a dying message in such a situation? And to cut off the head too. There’s probably more important things to talk about, right?

“…So I say, why?”

Disgust and a groan leaked out from my throat.

“Why did Ginji-san want to this?”

“So then, Narumi, what do you think will happen when a headless corpse is found.”

Something that will happen because of such an incident?

I scanned the dark park that was only filled with the presence of death.

A strange corpse would cause the park to be closed, the reconstruction delayed, and Ginji-san’s hut to be protected.

His house still remains in the park.

“Right.” Alice muttered. “Katsuragi Kenji couldn’t have died off just like that. He had to think of some way to cause a bigger commotion that would delay the reconstruction. He also didn’t want others to find out his real identity, but he wants to return to the park on the Holy Night. That’s why he asked his friends to fulfil his wish, the only method he could do that was worth trying.”

Alice looked away from me, and towards Mori-san, towards the little plastic bag in his hands.

“And he did, though in the form of ashes.”

Mori-san curled his slightly blackened lips, and merely handed the bag over to us.

However, Alice shook her head.

“The ones who should accept this aren’t us.”

Alice turned her head aside, and I followed her glance. At the entrance of the park, before the stairs was a slender figure who had appeared there without us knowing. I felt my chest being suffocated for some reason. How many times does the detective have to repeat this process again? She’s only going to reveal the words of the dead when the cruel stage is set?

Yui-san approached, but I couldn’t see her expression due to her sunglasses. As usual, her hair was hidden under the kni cap, and she was dressed in a tight-fitting peacoat, her slender figure looking more helpless than usual.

Kamimemo07 325.jpg

I only got to see her face when she entered the area where the dim street lights shone upon her. The moist eyes were filled with scepticism, looking as though it would shatter at any given moment.

“Did you hear everything?”

The detective ask the client. Yui-san responded, but it was unclear if she was nodding or shivering due to cold.

“In that case, we are done with your request. Are you satisfied now?”

“You have to be kidding.”

Yui-san stared at the bag Mori-san was holding out.

“I-I didn’t ask for this. I said I want to meet my father. I don’t want this.”

Right, Alice. This is too much. This twist of words will only cause everyone to be hurt. Why did you have to do this? Ginji-san too. Why? Why—

“Why, papa.”

Yui-san’s voice was filled with intense anguish.

“Why? Why did you have to do this? Is this place that important? Do you really want to keep that tattered house? Why? Why? Aren’t you dead because of this? Why?”

“Right.” The detective softly answered, “It’s all because this place is his home.”

Yui-san shook her head to hold in the tears that were about to flow out, she didn’t notice the sound caused by her sunglasses falling onto the metal sheet.

Alice took the bag from Mori-san’s hands, went towards Yui-san, and grabbed her arm.

“I’m the NEET detective, speaker of the dead. I am going to convey to you the words of the dead. Follow me.”

 

The tent was pitch dark, chilly, with a bittersweet smell. As seen before, there ere only some futons laid out on the floor. Alice brought a completely devastated into the wide space of a place nobody would except to be a homeless’ home, and she too went in. Despite this, there was a lot of space inside.

But what was inside? Just the presence of death lingering. I stared at the opened entrance, thinking.

“What now? What’s with this place?”

Yui-san asked in an agitated manner.

“Please don’t say something stupid like I should stay here for a night to understand how papa will think.”

But the detective didn’t answer, and asked Yui-san.

“Do you know the origin of the word camera?”

Yui-san’s eyes were moist due to tears and scepticism as she stared at Alice, and I took stared at the black hair under the black veil in shock.

“Wh…at?’

“The origin of the word Camera. Camera Obscura—in Latin, it means ‘a dark house’.”

Narumi, close the entrance when you come in. I suppressed my doubt that appeared in response to Alice’s words, ducked down, and entered.

The plywood doors let out a dry sound.

However, once I did so, the room didn’t become completely dark. A strange warmth and light shone upon, so I could vaguely see Yui-san’s blushing face and Alice’s pale face. Why? Where is this light coming from?

“Look. This is what Katsuragi Kenji is trying to protect.”

Alice muttered. Her finger pointed at the floor between her and Yui-san, and I could hear Yui-san and me gasp in the darkness.

There was a light on the ground, an oval-shaped light. However, the light was clearly projecting a certain image.

“…Why…is-is that me…?”

Yui-san’s muttered landed upon her smile. That image did appear to be Yui-san; no, it definitely was her. Projected on the floor of cardboard was Natsuki Yui, singing a Christmas Carol in the middle of the snow. The singing voice should have been blocked out by the walls, yet my ears could hear that Christmas carol in my ears.

Why?

I sought for the source of the light.

There was a little hole in the cardboard wall facing the railway, and the light shone in from there. That was the only bullet hole not patched up by tape.

“Camera Obscura.” Alice again muttered, “By using a really small hole to align light into the dark room, one can clearly see a visual at the point of projection. Even the distant stars are within grasp.”

Your father has always been with you.

This was the house he finally obtained.

Alice muttered, and drips of water appeared on the cardboard floor, contorting Yui-san’s smile. I finally noticed that it was a projection of the PV of Natsuki Yui set up on the wall of the wall opposite the railway. I saw it several times, and even recalled the song; thus, I knew this song was coming to an end. The camera got closer, and I could clearly see the fluttering snowflakes. Once Yui-san was done with her singing, she closed her eyes in the midst of the melody, as though sleeping, hiding under the fur, entering a blissful dreamland. This miracle caused Ginji-san to remain here, and allowed him to return to his home through this way. It’s too much; there’s no need for the world to have such a cruel, kind and perfect miracle happen. However, I understood that miracles would happen one to anyone, just during the moments when we never realize.

“…I.”

Yui-san’s sobbing dampened the cardboard floor.

“I am here.”

I shook my head. No, I wanted to say, but even I didn’t know what I was trying to deny.

“I have been here with papa the entire time…he’s despicable.”

Yui-san put a hand on the floor, her shoulders shivering.

“You’re horrible, papa. I always wanted to be reunited with you, but you’re the only one who would say me…it’s unfair.”

The black veil shook in the corner of my eyes, and Alice appeared as though she wanted to say something, only to stop. It’s only at such moments did I understand what Alice was getting at.

The words of the dead are simply to comfort the living. Nobody else knows what your father is thinking.

However, this beauty is real, and it’s the only fact.

That’s why you have to bear all of this, right?

Alice never raised any cruel scepticism to Yui-san, and merely handed the plastic bag over to her. This bag continued the ashes Mori-san handed to us. The tape sealing it was torn us, and the ashes inside the bag scattered on the floor. Suddenly, there was a flash in the ash, and it was the platinum ring that melted due to the cremation, the alphabet ‘K’ barely to be seen.

This was—the only thing left.

What remained of Ginji-san were only this house made of cardboard, plywood and vinyl sheets, some ash, and a melted ring.

The warmth of the memories warmed my heart, and I supposed I could finally understand Ginji-san’s wishes. He wanted to protect the dream of Natsuki Yui, for it was an identity his daughter could not separate herself from. He kept seeking, feeling his blood, warmth and life, that were following through his eyes, neck, and body. He had to die as a homeless, but had to protect this home until the Holy Night, and return here again.

So he entrusted two things to his friends.

The prove that he was Katsuragi Kenji—his ring, and the head.

All the elements came together in a cruel fashion to great success, triggering the incident. The corpse lost its name, and the body left behind caused the park to be filled with the presence of death, causing everyone to leave, and protected this home as a realize. After hiding for a while, he returned to the park, had his ashes scattered on this ground as was agreed upon—the promised homeland. This was the one method worth trying that he chose.

Ginji-san, are you—

Really happy with this?

I wordlessly asked the letter ‘K’, these words unknowingly filled with an equivalent amount of fury for a certain person.

He became ash, and returned to his home in this mirror-like manner, so late that almost all his memories were wiped out—but there had to be a better, better way of doing this right?

I bit my lips, and shook my head.

This was his choice, and his choice on who to hurt or protect. The job of weighing the pros and cons will be up to a certain person up there casually writing in the notebook.

We could only accept this.

I gently inserted my finger into the ash scattered around; it was neither hot nor cold.

Welcome back, Ginji-san.

And also, good night.

 

I pushed the plywood door aside, grabbed Alice by the hand, and pulled her out. The frostiness of December dragged us back into reality. The sounds of the train could be heard, heard, and it was probably the last ride. I guess it was already the next day, time for Jesus to be crying in the manger.

“See, that is the real miracle.”

Alice pointed at the metal fence as she muttered. I turned around, and found her pointing at the street light at the top of the tall pole. At this point, it was extinguished.

“…Street light?”

“Right. That street light isn’t in the air. When it extinguishes, it has the effect of a lens. Without that, the television visual far down the streets will never reach this dark room.”

“Heh. I see.”

I nearly let out such sarcastic words, and hurriedly covered my tracks. What Alice said next was more sarcastic than my words,

“The fire that started in summer is likely caused by that.”

“…Eh?”

“If the lens gathers all the sunlight, there should be enough heat gathered to trigger a fire. There was probably a black box or something positioned right at where the sunlight’s gathered at.”

“Ahh…” So that’s the experiment we did for our physics classes in elementary school. These meaningless glass bits are the culprits causing the fire in this park, and also the helpers who created Ginji-san’s wonderful memory.

“It’s probably going to be taken down.” Alice appeared to have read through my thoughts as she said this, “These lights don’t go well with a sports park.”

“I guess.”

At this moment, a scenery appeared in my mind. Under the scorching sun would be a desert that would burn everything to the ground, living onto a street lamp in the middle.

Alice grabbed my hand, and walked away, the scenery of the desert seemingly shattering in my heart, and the white breathes of hers and mine dissipated in the air.

We passed through the forest, arriving at the center of the park, and found that Mori-san had vanished. His job was done, and there was no need for him to remain here. I started to wonder a little, what would that man do from this point? The police would probably find out about them and deliver justice. But under what charge? They were simply fulfilling what they had to do.

I sighed, and turned my back on the darkness, pulling Alice by the hand as I walked on. The detective work was completely done.

I walked out, and turned back, hearing that Christmas song again from behind the forest and the metal fence.

“We should let loose as much as we can.”

Alice muttered.

“Us of no religious faith should just dump all miracles into a trashbin and enjoy ourselves all we want.”

I nodded, and walked down the stairs. I got the feeling that the world got clearer than before. In this frosty wind, Yui-san’s singing voice, and even the noises from the vehicles, trains, people crossing each other at the station staircase, shop attendants trying to sell off their remaining cakes, and the hoarse voices of the drunks could be heard as clearly as a clock’s second hand. All the hustle on this night felt so adorable for some reason, and it was truly a strange Holy Night.

 

And so, the construction of the park started soon after the new year.

I was not in the mood, so I had no interest in such news, but it appeared the students who went about shooting the homeless with their modified airguns had given up. This was trending furiously on the internet, and I couldn’t ignore it completely either. Also, the guys of the Hirasaka-gumi too continued with some baseless rumors.

“Aniki flicked back a grenade with a finger flick and blew up all the enemies!”

“Aniki stuffed his hand into a rocket launcher and blew it up, and blew up all the enemies!”

“Aniki directed a missile with a little blow, and blew up all the enemies!”

Those Hirasaka-gumi guys should just turn themselves in too, their crime being a parade of barbaric gorillas.

 

And behind the rumors that spread like a plague, there were many other things that weren’t mentioned. Only Tetsu-senpai knew the fate that befell Mori-san and Pe-san.

“Heard that the food at the detention center is good, and they’re able to spend the Winter at a place with a roof, so those guys are really happy. Good work.”

Tetsu-senpai dropped by at ‘Hanamaru’ in January, and told me this.

“Will they be charged?” Hiro could not help but ask worriedly.

“Who knows? Probably under the crime of abandoning a corpse or damaging it or something.”

Hearing their conversation, I seemed to understand what Alice would always say, “I have no interest in criminals.” I too had no interest in them.

But Mori-san and the others merely fulfilled the wishes of their once living friend, and us detectives can only reveal and humiliate the words of the dead, yet they fulfilled it without a word. Who could reproach, judge and punish them?

The cruel incident was coupled with a cruel outcome, like snow in the desert, finally left with nothing. Thus, Ginji-san’s little hut was torn down at the end of the year, while the street lamp vanished as the construction trucks buzzed around the park.

If there was something I wanted to say that lingered in my heart, it would be the same as Alice.

Why did they have to do this—just this reason alone.

 

Major returned to ‘Hanamaru’ right when my winter break was about to end.

“The police abuse of authority is really, really, really violent! All the gun technology used by the history research club was taught by me, and the ways to purchase them were mostly retailers I know. I told them everything, and the investigators got really excited, so they went searching from my house to the college research room!”

Major kept devouring a large bowl of miso ramen and told us excitedly.

“Of course, I won’t keep any illegally modified weapons in places the police can find, so I was acting obedient in the interrogation room and laughing inside my stomach. Ah, right, they didn’t give me pork cutlet rice. I can have it, but I need to pay.”

Major was being so upbeat that it shocked me. It seemed Tetsu-senpai’s happy to finally have a comrade who was arrested, and after that, those two started chatting about their experiences in detention. Those two idiots.

“They’ll definitely do urine checks, and if they did it on Narumi back then, it’ll come out positive and he’ll be arrested.”

“They’ll check for tattoos too! Yondaime’s out too!”

But this was just an act, and even I could tell. Ever since that incident, Major never brought out any air guns or modified guns. In places of them was an M14 that was broken into two and placed on both sides. If anyone were to ask “What’s the matter”, he would simply answer that it’s ‘in repair’. However, I know that he always had this gun in his backpack.

Everyone has a different way of making up and forgetting their past.

 

Finally, I want to talk about Yui-san’s ending.

A month and a half later, the NEET detective agency received a large cardboard box directed at Fujishima Narumi, and the sender was Katsuragi Yuina.

“Why is my thing sent to you, Narumi?”

Alice was already in a bad mood, but once she took out the 4 bunny dolls, she changed her mind.

“Mmmm…these aren’t sold; they’re colored versions that haven’t been released…these definitely are prototypes, so that means she has links with the designers. Uu, I’m so envious!”

Alice embraced the 4 bunny dolls of different colors and rolled about on the bed, while I read the letter Yui-san sent to me.

 

“This are the bunnies I promised before. I’m really sorry to deliver it so late after I received Minveva.

I have deposited the investigation fees into your account. Please confirm.”

I’ll drop by to play next time.

 

“My detective agency isn’t a place to play at…but it’s rare to have a doll enthusiast I can get on with so well…mmm.”

Alice buried her face in the 4 bunnies, really bothered by this, and I couldn’t help but grin as I watched her. There were dolls, and also a CD and a letter directed at it. I started up the CD player, and read the letter to Alice.

 

“Thank you very much too, Narumi-kun. It’s thanks to you that my album became a bestseller. Huh? It’s weird to be thanking you for this.

To thank you, I sent the upcoming single to you, Narumi-kun. This is a song for someone very important to me, and I hope you’ll be the first to hear it, so I made it into a CD. I guess Alice-chan will be angry upon hearing this letter, so please don’t let her see this letter.”

 

…Eh? But I just read it to her.

“W-wh-wh-what’s with this letter!?”

Alice tossed aside the bunnies and leapt at me, pulling the letter from me. After reading it, she blushed.

“Wh-what’s with this!? You laid your hand on a woman using your duty as an excuse, y-you shameless fellow!”

“No I didn’t! Calm down. Just listen to the song and you’ll understand!”

Argh seriously, why write such a vague letter? Alice threw a bunch of empty Dr. Pepper cans, causing me to escape from the office, sit at the emergency stairs, and put the earphones into my ears. An untimely bell chime echoed in this clear frosty sky of January, and after that, Yui-san’s singing voice began with a guitar riff.

It was another Christmas song, one that was a month late.

 

That single would be officially released on January 24th. I saw it on a news website.

When Yui-san was interviewed, naturally, she was asked why she came up with a Christmas song again, and she answered,

 

“It’s a very personal song.”

“I really wanted to release this single, so I pestered the manager and begged the producer, before finally releasing it as a limited single on the internet. Yes, I did the lyrics.”

“I promised that person that I’ll meet on Christmas.”

“It’s a man. Rest is secret (laughs)”

“This promise happened a long time back, back when I was in elementary school. Right, so everyone, please relax (laughts)”

“I waited so long, so long that even I was shouting. I can’t wait any more!”

“So in response, I decided to delay my Christmas gift by a month. Yaah! This is payback!”

 

The song title is “I’m here”.

This single’s way better than the Christmas song last December. Even though Christmas was long over, there were times where I would take it out to hear. A person’s way of laughing, crying, and wiping their tears really differs from person to person.

<End>


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