Owari no Chronicle:Volume13 Chapter 29
Chapter 29: Things Children Say
When people see my spread arms
They call them wings
Roger saw a series of motion from his spot in the audience seats.
First, Heo gave a shout and Harakawa frantically tackled her from the side.
Most of the time, Thunder Fellow appeared behind her so she could be taken aboard, so he knocked her to the floor and out of the way.
…I haven’t seen this in a while.
A mechanical dragon appeared in a gust of wind.
It was Thunder Fellow.
He appeared behind Heo and Harakawa who lay face down on the ground, so he seemed to be lying on top of them.
Roger then saw the nearly forty meter blue dragon extend his head toward the counter and his tail straight back.
The tail did not fit inside the library but escaped that difficulty by sticking into the preparation room. Sf tilted her head to avoid the tail, but if she had not, the top of her head would have been taken off.
Regardless, Sf spoke calmly.
“5th-Gear representative, please continue your question-and-answer session.”
Her cold voice stopped everyone else from moving.
Roger then realized that it was their turn to be nervous and that Odor gave a satisfied nod toward the mechanical dragon below.
Roger followed his superior officer’s gaze and saw Harakawa and Heo getting up.
Heo looked around, sighed, and finally seemed to notice what had happened.
“U-u-um… W-well, is everyone okay?”
No one responded. No one had the nerve to answer this girl who controlled a dragon.
The dragon acted as Heo’s guardian and, to anyone who did not know her, he was nothing more than a large 5th-Gear weapon.
He could fly and easily shoot down steel monsters larger than himself.
And at the moment, the main cannon in his mouth and the secondary cannons on his shoulders were ready to fire.
Everyone here had received a report saying that the dragon only listened to her and that she was the most effective safety device for him.
But now that he appeared before their eyes, they could see something not mentioned in the report.
They instantly understood that Heo truly controlled 5th-Gear’s power, so they all grew tense and thus silent.
If they said and did nothing, they would not be seen as an enemy.
If they did anything wrong, they could easily end up the target of the Concept War’s most powerful individual weapon.
However, the dragon’s head turned toward Heo and then to the left and right.
“Are you okay, Heo? And you, Harakawa?”
“We might have been even more okay if you hadn’t shown up.”
Harakawa sat cross-legged in the one meter space below Thunder Fellow’s head and Heo sat next to him.
“U-um, sorry. I’m fine, okay?”
“Are you? But I sensed some kind of danger.”
The room’s temperature seemed to drop three degrees at that.
“Is this a battlefield? Have you been captured? I see people of other Gears. Are they enemies?”
“C-c-c-c-calm down, Thunder Fellow.”
Roger agreed wholeheartedly with Heo and everyone present was united in spirit.
All the people seated around him had to be thinking the same thing: Spare me. Please, please spare me.
…Praise god for this harmony between us all. If this is what a united republic feels like, perhaps I should vote Republican next election.
The only people who still appeared calm were Odor who sat next to Roger and Diana who sat in the German UCAT representative seat beyond Odor.
“See, honey? You bring these corners together, fold it like this, open it up, and…tah dah! It’s a helmet.”
“Hmm, hmm. So origami is a means of weaponizing paper! Such a frightening country!”
Is this a new way to escape reality!? wondered Roger, but he held his tongue because complicating the situation could easily make American UCAT the cause of the world’s destruction.
While everyone nervously watched on, Heo stroked Thunder Fellow’s throat.
“Calm down, Thunder Fellow. I’m fine.”
She looked over her shoulder as she spoke and her voice contained her usual strength and smile.
“Everyone else is fine too, right?”
To ensure their safety, everyone shouted a response to the girl’s smile.
“Yes! Perfectly fine!!”
Heo breathed a sigh of relief at that answer.
Her shoulders fell and she faced forward from below Thunder Fellow.
“You hid under your desk, Sayama? You sure are careful.”
“Well, Heo-kun, I was given disaster training when I was younger.”
Sayama was crouched under his desk and he held tightly onto the desk legs.
“If you do this, you will remain safe even during a disaster.”
Heo wondered what he would do if Thunder Fellow lay down and kind of wanted to try it, but she resisted.
She sat below Thunder Fellow and Sayama below his desk, but it was Sayama who spoke first.
“Heo-kun, what do you want to do?”
Wondering what to say, she looked to the side and found Harakawa with his back to her.
“H-Harakawa… Hey! Why are you reading Shounen Mazagine?”
“He asked what you want to do, so don’t worry about me. After all, I’m busy with this battle against the Dark Prince.”
“But… I already decided I wanted to have H with you!!”
Huh? she wondered as she thought back on what she had said.
“I meant to say ‘become H with you’…”
Someone then spoke to her from the audience seats.
“H-Heo? As your teacher, I don’t think this is the place for that announcement.”
A light came on above Diana who wore a black suit and placed a hand on her cheek.
“First, you should probably talk it out with him. You can discuss how big a family you want.”
“T-teacher! Y-you mean children? B-but I’m still...um…”
“Oh, that’s right Heo. No one has even taught you how that’s done, have they?”
Diana’s cheek flushed below her hand.
“But it may be about time you learned about that adult secret. The truth is…babies are brought to couples by the stork.”
Three seconds of silence passed after her revelation.
Afterwards, Heo saw two people stand up from the representative seats: Hiba and Izumo.
They used eye and hand signals to coordinate with each other and moved in front of either the north or south audience seats.
They then lowered their hands and raised them on the count of three as a signal to Heo and everyone else.
“Ehhhhhh!? The stork!?”
“Wh-why are you all so shocked!? Don’t tell me none of you knew!”
“Ah! Izumo-san!” shouted Hiba. “This is so crazy that…I! I! I think I’m going to confess my love to you!!”
“That’s just creepy.”
“Wh-why are you taking it seriously!? Can’t you play along with the joke!?”
Heo saw Sayama shrug below his desk and sigh.
“Loving another boy? Honestly, you are such a pervert. You are just an unpleasant person overall.”
“Please take a look in the mirror! And at reality! Not to mention at how you act every day and at Shinjou-san!!”
“Yes, Shinjou-kun is incredibly cute.”
“Ah! This is hopeless!”
“All of you are hopeless!” shouted Diana’s dignified voice. She also brushed a hand through her long hair and puffed out her chest. “I was trying to have a serious discussion with my student and you bring up love between boys? …That is biologically wrong!”
“T-teacher! C-c-c-c-c-calm down, teacher. I’ll calm down, too.”
“I am perfectly fine, Heo. The problem is everyone around me. And…what is the matter, Heo? You were always such an excellent student, so why are you so flustered?”
Heo calmed her breathing, but Diana asked a question as if making a finishing blow.
“Heo, are you trying to say I’ve made some kind of mistake?”
Awkward sweat quickly covered Heo’s entire body.
She could see Diana looking at her with the ends of her eyebrows lowered.
…I feel like people have been testing me too much lately.
Um, but should I give the correct answer here? I’d only be correcting her, but the stenographers seem to be holding their pens awfully eagerly. Is this sexual harassment? Is that what this is? Um, um, um…
Fortunately, something released her from the pressure.
It was a voice. A male voice. It belonged to Odor who sat next to Diana.
“Diana, Diana! To preserve your honor, I must inform you that you are wrong.”
Heo was relieved to hear her teacher’s surprised comment.
Odor was her husband, so it was appropriate for him to give her this kind of information.
“Diana, let me tell you where children really come from: they are born from cabbages.”
Everyone cried out, breathed in, stomped thrice on the floor, and…
“You really are a couple, aren’t you!!!?”
Surprised, Diana raised her voice in protest, but everyone ignored her.
Sayama then spoke from below his desk.
“So what were you trying to say, Heo-kun? That you wish to be given a peaceful life with someone you care about?”
It was a sudden question.
The audience had yet to quiet down, so Heo just about answered “yes”.
But she said nothing.
She thought, hesitated for a moment, and then answered with a hand on Harakawa’s shoulder.
“N-no. If I have to be given peace, then I don’t want it.”
Heo placed a hand on her chest.
“I…want to take my studies seriously. I want to join a club, join a committee, go to school festivals, have the long vacations, do my homework, take midterm exams, take final exams, go to homeroom classes, have fun afterschool, stare out the window in class, stare into the sky through the hallway windows, and do so many other things.”
She was unsure if she should say the rest.
“And I know it’s asking for a lot, but I also want to go to college if possible.”
“You do not think that would be impossible, do you?”
“No,” she answered while leaning forward a little. “But that isn’t all.”
“I see. So you want something else after you earn a peaceful life?
“Yes. …It’s a pretty outrageous dream, though.”
She raised her right hand to stroke Thunder Fellow’s throat.
“If I see anyone trembling in fear, I want to reach out and save them.”
She then asked a question to everyone there instead of just Sayama.
“Is there anyone here who will lend me a free sky and who will not brush aside my outstretched hand?”
Her question had a single important meaning: would they allow her forty meter mechanical dragon inside their countries and reservations?
And this dragon was protected by powerful armor, could fly into satellite orbit under his own power, had a main cannon powerful enough to blow away a mountain range, and even had a stealth system.
However, Heo did not hesitate to ask.
“Will you let me form an international rescue team? I obviously won’t be enough on my own, so I would need some help…”
“American…American UCAT promises to provide assistance and free skies to your free dragon!!”
Surprised by Odor’s sudden agreement, Heo quickly stood up.
But her head slammed into Thunder Fellow’s throat armor and she collapsed back to the floor.
She loudly struck the ground and Thunder Fellow’s calm voice reached her from overhead.
“There was nothing I could do about that, Heo. I am glad you did not hit a sharper part, though.”
“S-so am I…”
Tears welled up in her eyes more from the surprise than the pain. She rubbed her head while still lying on the floor and found a bump had already formed.
…Oh, I hope this doesn’t damage my brain and make me go crazy.
She was surrounded by plenty of examples and she did not want to be like any of them.
Harakawa lightly tapped the bump on her head, so she quickly stood up.
“S-stop, Harakawa! Don’t touch me in my sensitive spot. You’ll make me cry!”
“Stop saying things that make the stenographers so happy. And more importantly, look around you.”
She held her head with tears in her eyes and did as instructed.
She looked to the shadowy forms visible in the audience seats.
…They’re raising their hands.
Enough hands were raised to form a veritable forest of answers.
The more hesitant ones raised their own answering branches after seeing everyone around them.
Sf raised both of her guns toward the ceiling and fired a blank from each.
The deafening sound was accompanied by a slight wind.
“Tes. I will interpret this as an acceptance of 5th-Gear’s request.”
“Yes,” agreed Sayama. “It is an interesting idea. We could create branch offices in each country’s UCAT and station non-combat mechanical dragons and gods of war there. If 3rd is included, it would become quite a multi-purpose organization. …But Heo-kun, you would be the organization’s main force, so you could easily become so busy you lose your peaceful life. Are you sure you want that?”
She brought a hand to her chest.
“I’ll make sure it’s fine.”
Sayama smiled at that and then laughed.
“Then I suppose it will be fine. …I too will accept your suggestion. Selfishly rescue the world all you want.”
Heo gave a cry of joy, jumped toward Harakawa, and embraced him.
“Harakawa! Harakawa! I’m so happy!”
“This is great. Now I don’t have to worry when I give birth to the baby you put inside me.”
Everyone froze in place when they heard that.
Harakawa seemed to pass out briefly, but he finally asked a quiet question.
“…Are you having trouble with the Japanese language again?”
“No, not at all. After all…”
She tilted her head, wondering what this was about.
“Babies are made by kissing, right? And you kissed me, remember?”
A moment later, everyone’s voices exploded out for a variety of reasons.
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