The Zashiki Warashi of Intellectual Village:Bonus Track
Enbi: “The Glass House Case was the lovey-dovey case where the detective and I first met! It was the usual kind of case: a series of murders in a suspicious mansion deep in the mountains.”
Hayabusa: “You’re the only person in the world who would call a dangerous case like that ‘lovey-dovey’. And it’s been a few years since then…so were you wandering around a crime scene at around ten!? And I doubt that was the first time either!”
Enbi: “Eh heh. That’s about when I started doing things by deduction. Even earlier, when I was five or six, I would capture the criminal by acting all harmless and then shoving people from behind to make a mess of the case.”
Hayabusa: “You really are completely insane.”
Enbi: “But you’re bringing up a pretty old case here, detective.”
Hayabusa: “That’s because I was checking through the document archives and found there was barely any info on this one! It says they couldn’t do a proper investigation of the crime scene because you destroyed the entire mansion before the police arrived!!”
Enbi: “G-gulp! But c’mon, that was a product of my heart of justice wanting to protect you.”
Hayabusa: “Shut up. Anyway, we’re going to think back on what happened and make some proper records out of those fragmentary memories.”
Enbi: “So that’s why you brought out that digital voice recorder…”
Hayabusa: “We both know the answer since we were involved at the time, so it’ll be hard for us to tell if our explanations are sufficient. We can have Tomoe-chan or Tsumada-san listen to the recording later and see if someone without any knowledge of the case can picture the details. C’mon, let’s get started.”
Enbi: “Okayyy. …But if this is reliant on our testimonies, doesn’t that mean we could invent some new ‘facts’ about what might have gone on between us while-…?”
Hayabusa: “Mystery Freak.”
Enbi: “Okay, okay. I’ll take this seriously!”
- I drove up the mountain road.
- I found Enbi after entering a tunnel on a private road. I picked her up because I thought she might have run into some trouble.
- I heard a rumbling behind me. The tunnel collapsed, isolating us.
- No cellphone signal.
- There’s a mansion on the slope of the mountain. The two of us are headed there in the hopes of finding a landline phone.
Hayabusa: “I glossed over it as ‘picked her up’, but as soon as I called out, a brat with eyes like rusted blades suddenly hit me on the side of the head. And with the bottom of a gigantic flashlight!”
Enbi: “O-oh, c’mon. When a fragile little girl is walking along a mountain road and a strange adult calls out to her from a car, of course her self-defense instincts are going to kick in! Really, detective, you should’ve just shown me your police badge right away.”
Hayabusa: “And I also glossed over it, but the fact the Mystery Freak was walking on the mountain road alone is a pretty important point.”
Enbi: “What about you, detective? Were you there for work? Or just out for a drive?”
- A storm blew up on the way to the mansion.
- Enbi and I arrived at the mansion.
- When we knocked on the gate, a mysterious butler with a bandaged face answered.
- We were welcomed in and found an insane interior with every floor, wall, and ceiling except for the exterior walls and roof made from transparent reinforced glass.
- The mysterious butler (ha ha) and Enbi-chan know each other.
- The detective seemed to think he could use their phone. → But the black landline phone(!) isn’t working either.
- The mansion’s wife, Hoshimi Akua, is doing some remodeling even though the butler and the maid (sparkle sparkle) are trying to stop her. She was even moving the paulownia dresser. (←She’s surprisingly strong.)
Hayabusa: “Y’know… You had a tensely sour look on your face the entire time back then, but your memos are pretty cute.”
Enbi: “Well, of course! Enbi-chan is cute from head to toe! Ah, what’s that sigh for, detective!?”
Hayabusa: “And that was how we were let inside the mansion.”
Enbi: “Mhh! A-anyway, that’s the rumored Glass House. By the way, this is how it was introduced on the builder’s website.”
“A Record of Our Office’s Past Jobs (with permission from the owners, of course)”
The Natsukawa Construction Planning Office does more than just create a living space. We will meet our customer’s needs by creating custom works of spatial art that fit your personality and satisfy your heart.
When seen from outside, the Glass House high in the mountains of Western Tokyo is beautiful, but might not seem like anything special. But with the exception of the roof, external walls, and ground floor, every interior wall, floor, and ceiling are made of glass. This strange design gave physical form to our customer’s family rules and the building was thoroughly designed to satisfy that desire without neglecting the fundamentals.
Enbi: “As you can see from the fact that I was talking with the butler like normal, I had already been staying at the mansion. In other words, I wasn’t lost or stranded; I was out exploring.”
Hayabusa: “There are also a few explanations of the mansion’s layout, but that honestly doesn’t matter.”
Enbi: “Yeah, it wasn’t a case that requires knowing the layout to solve.”
Hayabusa: “And the wife’s remodeling will be more important later.”
Enbi: “Um, also note that the storm came after the tunnel collapse. In other words, it didn’t collapse due to the storm.”
- I was introduced to the mansion’s family and guests in the living room.
- Hoshimi Shuuren: 56. Male. Owner of the Glass House and a fortune teller that specializes in well-off customers.
- Hoshimi Akua: 36. Female. Shuuren’s wife. Technically a housewife, but the housework is left to the butler and maid.
- Hoshimi Dounyuu: 27. Male. Son of the Hoshimi family and another fortune teller.
- Hoshimi Kanpa: 20. Female. Daughter of the Hoshimi family and another fortune teller. Must have bad legs because she is confined to a wheelchair.
- Kariba Toga: 40. Male. The Glass House’s butler. Also the cook.
- Matsushima Ren: 22. Female. The Glass House’s maid.
- Yatsui Toshi: 72. Male. Honorary President who has left active management of the Yatsui General Trading Company.
- Matsushima Ryou: 17. Female. High school girl. Set to be the next head of Matsushima Construction, a major general contractor.
- Hatsutomo Naru: 19. Female. College girl. Illegitimate child of the president and representative director of the Hatsutomo Shinkin Bank, a major financial institution.
- Toyokawa Ryuu: 25. Male. Secretary of the president of Toyokawa Automobiles, an international car manufacturer.
Enbi: “There’s so much there it’ll make you dizzy, but you’ll be fine if you remember these three things:
“1. There’s a family of fortune tellers.
“2. People connected to major corporations are butting heads with them.
“3. The people can be divided into those from inside the mansion and those from outside.”
Hayabusa: “Well, there are also some obvious oddities. Like the age of the wife versus the age of the kids, whether someone would really come out and call themselves an illegitimate child, and why a member of the main family would be a secretary.”
- During the introductions, I learned Enbi’s family name is Hishigami.
- A stir ran through the room when Uchimaku Hayabusa said he was a police detective. Hoshimi Dounyuu was the most obviously nervous.
Enbi: “This was pretty awful too. You kept calling me a brat, but you didn’t even know my name.”
Hayabusa: “I’ll admit it was a shock. The Hishigami Group is a giant corporation with ads running everywhere on TV. They have so many affiliated companies the list just goes on and on. Although I could see why such a big name would be gathered with the others.”
“Hishigami Group Business Concept Commercial (120-second single-sponsored ad that airs nationwide Monday’s at nine)”
Many small water caltrops join together into a single large god.
That is the Hishigami Group which is an indispensable part of your life.
Our Group’s history dates back to the end of the Edo era. Our founder was the first to grasp the changes brought by the fall of the shogunate and the Meiji Restoration and began searching for a standard to be used in the coming age of interpretation.
The conglomerate was broken up after the two World Wars we survived and was reborn as a group of corporations.
We currently include 58 companies in 9 divisions and have more than 200,000 employees in all. The Hishigami Group is always opening new frontiers. Our novel and bold advances and our reliable and detailed care have established us in an excellent position internationally.
Hayabusa: “Oh, c’mon.”
Enbi: “What? Nothing good can come from a monstrous company that calls itself a god!”
Hayabusa: “And I guess I’ve got to deal with that eventually.”
Enbi: “Don’t bother! In fact, I get the feeling you’d end up as a collector of the Hishigami Women like me and my sister or end up charging down the path of an ultra-high powered harem! I don’t even want to think about a summoner detective who can call in Yume, Kuji, or Ama with his cellphone!”
Hayabusa: “Well, that can wait.”
Enbi: “Let’s get back on topic with Hoshimi Dounyuu’s suspicious behavior. He was obsessed with hunting, so he had a ton of crossbows in his room. They ranged from a giant one too big to pull the bowstring back since it didn’t use pulleys and a pistol-style one that would fit in a camera bag. He was nervous because he thought the detective might get after him for shooting empty cans in the mountain. He was of course innocent and was worried over nothing. You could say he had an imagined crime, confusingly enough.”
Hayabusa: “So you had been walking along the mountain road to investigate that, right?”
Enbi: “I was looking for evidence of a crossbow actually being used. With a planned murder, the culprit would have practiced beforehand.”
Hayabusa: “Those really are some dangerous toys, though. And to be honest, I hadn’t thought this would turn into some big case. With the walls, floors, and ceilings transparent, you couldn’t hide anything and you couldn’t secretly plan out a murder even if you had a weapon…or so I thought.”
- Yatsui Toshi and Toyokawa Ryuu seemed mistaken about something and snapped at me.
- There seems to be some kind of argument between the fortune teller family and the people connected to major corporations.
- The butler Kariba Toga and the maid Matsushima Ren know nothing about the fortune telling and can’t follow the conversation.
- Toyokawa Ryuu keeps one hand in his pocket.
- A threatening letter had arrived for Hoshimi Shuuren. The corporation side thinks Shuuren called the detective to protect himself and they’re demanding he admit to it. (Such a tense atmosphere.)
Hayabusa: “That’s the first I’ve heard of a threatening letter.”
Enbi: “Well, of course he wouldn’t say anything. He’s a fortune teller who specializes in politicians and major corporations. It would hurt his image if he couldn’t even predict an assassin rushing at him with a knife.”
Hayabusa: “That questionable fortune telling is a problem too.”
“Special Tabloid Article on the Lawsuit Ruling”
Over the holiday, a black luxury car secretly drove deep into the mountains of Western Tokyo. The car looked horribly out of place deep within the thick woods, but it was carrying Mr. A, a self-proclaimed “expert” who is well-known in the financial world.
When people think of fortune telling, they usually think of magazines and the morning talk shows, but what if there was a special service for VIPs?
This happened on the day before the infamous mistaken speculation conflict known as the Black Minutes and the miserable result of that program sale goes without saying.
What if fortune telling had been involved in that decision?
It would seem modern international incidents come from outside the Restaurants. Of course, they’re a problem no matter where they come from.
Enbi: “Basically, they created believers here and there in the political and financial worlds and controlled their clients’ actions with the results of their fortune telling. That let them manipulate stock prices all they wanted, so Madoka would probably faint if she heard about it.”
Hayabusa: “What’s the legality of that? Wouldn’t that be insider trading or spreading rumors?”
Enbi: “The important point is they were only giving fortunes, not stock information. The country’s rules say we can’t interfere with people’s religious or ideological beliefs.”
Hayabusa: “And then the corporation group stormed in, telling them to give it a rest. That’s hardly surprising since they were all working hard and then someone showed up and completely changed the GDP and international balance of payments just by muttering some mumbo jumbo over a crystal ball. We’re talking about a world that can go beyond billions and reach trillions!”
Enbi: “By the way, Enbi-chan had no interest in the Group created by the Hishigami Men. I had just slipped in because I was interested in the threatening letter.”
- Yatsui Toshi threw an ash tray in anger, but it missed its target and flew toward Enbi.
- I caught it in one hand.
- Stop that! I’m gonna fall in love! (But this is a date to remember! Memo memo.)
Hayabusa: “…Hold on.”
Hayabusa: “Didn’t you fall for me a little easily there!?”
Enbi: “Sh-shut up! Don’t underestimate a lonely girl whose scarred heart is starving for some love! Grr, grr!!”
6:50 - 7:10 PM
- According to the TV, the storm won’t settle down for a few days.
- Until then, we will all be staying at the mansion. They apparently have a decent stockpile of food, so that won’t be a problem.
- Kariba Toga, the butler with the bandaged face, smiles and chats with the maid named Matsushima Ren and the daughter. He might not be a bad person.
- Shuuren begins fortune telling for some entertainment. He seems to be making it up as he goes along → In other words, it doesn’t have any set rules like astrology or tarot.
- He’s fortune telling why the detective came this deep in the mountains. (←Is the old man interested in the detective?)
- The detective came here because of a report of what looked like a young woman’s arms and legs spotted on a mountain road after a landslide.
- It turned out to be nothing: just a broken mannequin. But something bothered him, so he stayed behind on his own.
- From the glances I took of the detective’s face, that seems to be the legit answer.
Enbi: “That storm was apparently due to an explosive low-pressure system sitting over us. What they were saying on the TV was scarier than how things looked outside.”
We will be interrupting the scheduled programming for a repeat of the weather information.
Currently, heavy rain warnings have been issued for northern Kanagawa, Western Tokyo, and all of Saitama. At this level, we urge you to take shelter immediately and the explosive low-pressure system in question will likely stay put for a few more days.
There is a fear that seemingly solid ground will be saturated with water, so be on the lookout for landslides and collapses as you travel to your municipality’s designated shelter. Taking shelter at night is incredibly dangerous as you cannot see your footing. It is possible the manhole covers will have been dislodged on flooded streets. Always carry a light with you and progress with caution. And if reaching your shelter point would be difficult for any number of reasons, head to a room on the highest floor you can while keeping away from mountain and cliff slopes. To repeat…
Hayabusa: “But about Shuuren’s fortune telling. The real fork in the road is whether you honestly believe he was using the occult or you assume he was intercepting the police radio signal.”
Enbi: “And take note that this also keeps the corporation group in check. A mountain road collapsed? And something like a corpse was spotted? Let’s pay careful attention to that.”
Hayabusa: “…I wish we could have focused on that.”
7:10 – 7:40 PM
- The bandaged butler named Kariba has started cooking dinner.
- A fight broke out between Yatsui Toshi who prefers Japanese food and Matsushima Ryou who prefers Western food.
- Enbi is not picky. (According to her.)
- Yatsui Toshi and Matsushima Ryou fall silent.
- Shuuren is going around locking up the mansion.
- The Glass House’s locks require a set of keys to be locked or unlocked from the inside or outside.
- Dounyuu, the son, is all fidgety and can’t clam down.
- Matsushima Ren, the maid, takes a shower (1st time).
- The detective is staring. (Grr)
Hayabusa: “Wait. This doesn’t count as peeping!”
Enbi: “Anyway, this will introduce the insane family rules that say no secrets are needed between family.”
Hayabusa: “The other important point is that Shuuren locked up, not the butler or maid. He claimed it was the head of the family’s duty to protect everyone from outside threats.”
Enbi: “Also note that Dounyuu, the crossbow collector, couldn’t calm down.”
7:40 – 8:00 PM
- Matsushima Ryou and Yatsui Toshi get into a fight over whether to play chess or shogi. They end up playing Reversi against each other.
- The meal is prepared.
- Enbi tried to swipe some ham, so I scolded her. At some point, I ended up in charge of her.
- Hatsutomo Naru really did swipe some ham.
- Ren the maid calls everyone in for dinner, but Shuuren doesn’t show up.
- We head out to search for him and find him dead in the entrance hall. He was killed by a crossbow bolt to the right lung.
- He didn’t die instantly? There are traces of him crawling a few meters after being shot in the chest. But wouldn’t that open the wound further? ← That’d have to hurt…
Enbi: “And here it is: the first murder.”
Hayabusa: “It’s sort of important that we all ‘went out to search for’ Shuuren. That would normally make sense, but this was the Glass House. And what was its special trait?”
Enbi: “Of course, the corporation group was the most suspicious with their grievances from the fortune telling, but it was hard to say the fortune teller family was completely ruled out either. We had to narrow things down some before getting started.”
Hayabusa: “Yes. She caused some real trouble when I took my eyes off of her for just a second.”
8:00 to 8:20 PM
- After calming the panicked people, I made sure to preserve the scene of the crime. Everyone passes through the entrance hall, so I couldn’t just seal it off forever. I started with a tentative investigation of the scene.
- Shuuren was shot from directly ahead by a crossbow. Based on the length of the bolt, it probably belongs to a small pistol-sized crossbow.
- There’s a dying message in blood near Shuuren.
- The keys Shuuren should have had are gone. That means no one can leave the mansion.
- The dying message said “bow” in blood.
- Now, what if I change that to “88w”?
Enbi: “And presto!”
Hayabusa: “I can’t believe you would do that! You actually rewrote the dying message!!”
Enbi: “Yeah, but do you really think the victim would leave a coded message in the last barely-conscious moments before death? And even if he did, do you really think the murderer who had shot him straight in the chest wouldn’t notice?”
Hayabusa: “So that means you rewrote the fake dying message the murderer wrote?”
Enbi: “Now, let’s take a picture with my smartphone and show it off! The murderer’s bound to be shocked after thinking they’d escaped to safety.”
8:20 – 8:30 PM
- We gathered in the living room and the others started ganging up on crossbow-collecting Dounyuu.
- According to Dounyuu, one of his pistol-style crossbows had gone missing before dinner.
- Toyokawa Ryuu continues to keep one hand in his pants pocket. He seems to be operating a cell phone or digital voice recorder.
- Let’s show off the photo of the altered dying message!
- The ones who reacted unnaturally were Kanpa who was accusing Dounyuu, the wife Akua who was trying to stop the fighting, and Dounyuu himself.
Hayabusa: “Kanpa-san looked like an elegant young lady in a wheelchair, but she very surprisingly turned out to be an incredibly active person.”
Enbi: “Yeah, when she got mad, she would grab a mop or broom handle and start hitting you with it.”
Hayabusa: “They were all trying to think it over seriously by talking about alibis and motives…but it was pretty much useless.”
Enbi: “When you start talking about that stuff in reality, it really just comes down to endless arguing. Give a nice logical explanation like, ‘I was here then and that person saw me,’ and that person can ruin it with an irresponsible ‘Eh? Were you really there?’ People’s brains aren’t hard disks, so their memories can be dragged around by impressions. The witness has no obligation to cover for them, so you can’t really trust them. You don’t even need a majority opinion to crush someone’s claim.”
Hayabusa: “If only there was a rule that everyone would accept the truth even if it was to their disadvantage.”
Enbi: “Also, there was the crossbow.”
Hayabusa: “Dounyuu’s claim was just that: a claim. He could always have been lying.”
Enbi: “By the way, these are the specs of the crossbow in question. This is from a catalogue in Dounyuu’s room.”
“Sainaka Hunting Industries – New Fall Releases”
Product of Sainaka Hunting Industries
Length: 25cm (55cm when collapsible stock and stabilizer are fully expanded)
Weight: 700g (850g with our scope [sold separately])
Maximum Range: 150m
Effective Range: 20m (25m when using our standard bolt)
Price: Discretionary Pricing
Thoughts: This is our latest pistol-style crossbow which has superb durability, light weight, and small size thanks to its ABS plastic body. Even the standard model can be used for excellent sharpshooting, but when combined with the optional synthetic fiber bolts (sold separately), the kinetic energy increases threefold to create a truly ambitious product.
Hayabusa: “Oh, honestly. A silent crossbow you can hide in a bag? Why do they have to sell these obviously malicious things!? How could this possibly be used for hunting!?”
Enbi: “That was almost certainly the source of the murder weapon, but we had to think of some other possibilities just in case. Like that Kanpa might have hidden a dismantled crossbow inside her wheelchair.”
Hayabusa: “Either way, they would have to ‘get rid of’ Dounyuu’s crossbow, so that would just be wasted effort.”
Enbi: “From a psychology perspective, preferring to use a crossbow – or any kind of projectile, really – is a sign of a desire to ‘overturn a position of inferiority’. It comes from the contradiction of wanting a direct confrontation (instead of hiding in the shadows like with a trap or poison) but not wanting an actual physical struggle. That’s why they wanted to free themselves from the tension at a safe distance.”
Hayabusa: “That’s just one example. Profiling is based on statistics. It’s not magic.”
Enbi: “And the dying message seemed pretty simple to me. Who had been surprised that the message in blood hadn’t pointed to the owner of the bow…in other words, Dounyuu? And who had reacted even though they had no reason to be surprised?”
8:30 – 9:00 PM
- I informed everyone we were locked in the mansion without the keys.
- There’s a storm outside and the tunnel collapsed, but we still decided to check for any way out of the mansion.
- The windows and doors won’t open. They’re made of reinforced security glass, so not even tools are enough to break them.
- Just to be sure, I checked the dresser and desk drawers in all the rooms. With their consent, I patted everyone down, but I couldn’t find the crossbow or keys.
- We found a digital voice recorder in Toyokawa Ryuu’s pocket.
- Ren, the maid, was shocked.
- Akua, the wife, looked displeased.
Hayabusa: “The keys are one thing, but it was obvious where the crossbow was hidden. The murderer was the only one who could go in or out, so if they threw the crossbow out and locked up afterwards, no one would find it. The outside walls weren’t transparent, after all.”
Enbi: “But how could those reinforced glass windows be so strong? The front door too.”
Hayabusa: “It’s the same stuff the police and even the Ministry of Defense use. But how much money went into that mansion to cover every surface with it?”
“Never Publicly Released Advertisement Sent to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department’s Equipment Procurement Committee”
The Crystal Shield Ver.12 we have developed is the latest grade of bullet- and bomb-proof glass expected to be used in vehicles for the president. Based on a miniscule truss structure created from various impurities mixed into a silicon base, this greatest masterpiece possesses hardness and elasticity one would never expect from glass. No ugly wires or films are mixed in. And as it is glass-based, it will repel most any chemical.
However, there are foreign export restrictions on this product, so transportation or resale to non-allied nations is strictly forbidden. Please be careful.
Hayabusa: “Don’t forget the digital voice recorder either.”
Enbi: “Yes, keep in mind why the Glass House’s walls and floors were transparent.”
Hayabusa: “And while it isn’t definitive, people in tense situations tend to focus on unnecessary things.”
Enbi: “That left the keys, but they weren’t in any of the furniture. But where else could they have been? There was nowhere else to hide something in that glass mansion.”
Hayabusa: “The answer was simple and it would become more important later.”
9:00 – 9:10 PM
- The murderer was able to freely kill with no one the wiser in the Glass House where everyone can see everything, so we needed a way to defend ourselves.
- The corporation group and the Hoshimi group split up and got into a fight.
- I calmed down Yatsui Toshi and Toyokawa Ryuu who tried to arm themselves with things like a kitchen knife or a hammer. I explained that close-range weapons would be meaningless against someone with a crossbow, that the murderer couldn’t lie in wait for a surprise attack with the glass walls, and that it would be more effective to take apart a bed and make a shield out of the blanket and plywood.
Enbi: “You’re a surprisingly smooth talker, detective. I was sure everyone was going to grab a weapon and create a situation where they could snap at the slightest provocation.”
Hayabusa: “No, you tried to get everyone worked up so they would do that! Even the carefree maid reached for a fruit knife! Do you have any idea how nerve-racking it was to calm them all down again!?”
Enbi: “Well, if the atmosphere got tense enough, the murderer might just have pulled out the crossbow to protect themselves. …And if all the suspects were killed, that would include the murderer too.”
Hayabusa: “Looks like you still haven’t learned your lesson. Shall I play back what you said back then?”
Enbi: W-wait. That isn’t something you should do in front of someone!”
Past Enbi (mimicked by Hayabusa): “Hey, do you believe in the grim reaper? I see. Then life will be nothing but one lesson after another for you. Nothing is as long and dark as a starless and moonless stormy night. You will have plenty of time to learn exactly how the world works.”
Hayabusa: “Um, what was that thing you did with your arms? You crossed them and placed the fingers on your forehead, right? Hm? This isn’t right. I’m all tangled up…”
Enbi: “Ababba! Ababababa! Byabyabyabyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhh!! (Tremble tremble tremble twitch twitch thud!!)”
9:10 – 9:20 PM
- Who would benefit from Shuuren’s death? The corporation group that had their stock prices influenced by his fortune telling or the Hoshimi kids who weren’t getting any work because he did it all himself?
- Dounyuu didn’t want all the suspicion on himself, so he started spreading gossip about the others.
- Yatsui Toshi knew some cooperative work between his Yatsui General Trading Company and Matsushima Construction had led to some negligent construction, but he wanted to know which company had been in charge of that.
- Matsushima Ryou wanted to know who had buried a mannequin in the road they had been working on and what it was meant to protest.
- Toyokawa Ryuu wanted to settle whether an accidental death in a Toyokawa Automobiles car had been due to the car or the road.
Hayabusa: “This is when it got more and more confusing.”
Enbi: “Th-that was cruel… But if you look over all the information, some of them stood on the side of justice and didn’t have a reason worth killing someone over. If Shuuren’s fortune telling had ‘just’ been about manipulating stock prices, there was no real threat of seeing someone’s unspeakable secret. But were we moving away from that assumption?”
Hayabusa: “And revealing all that didn’t actually help Dounyuu any.”
Enbi: “Yeah, even the people he wasn’t talking about would have a worse impression of him. And if the murderer was from the corporation group…”
Hayabusa: “They could ‘silence him’ before he said too much.”
- Opinions are split over whether we should stay in a single group or split up to separate rooms.
- We decided we could monitor each other regardless thanks to the transparent walls, floors, and ceilings, so those who wanted to stick together are in the living room and the others went to the bedrooms.
- Yatsui Toshi, Toyokawa Ryuu, and most of the others went to the bedrooms.
- The detective stayed with Enbi-chan in the living room. →My heart’s pounding.
Enbi: “This is where it differs from the standard mansion mystery. Normally you’d never have both choices being essentially the same.”
Hayabusa: “But despite the open environment, the murderer killed Shuuren without anyone noticing. We couldn’t let our guard down.”
- It’s a cold night.
- I decided to give Enbi my blanket.
- Eh? What’s this? Did he fall in love with me???
Enbi: “G-girl’s sometimes have a hard time controlling themselves!!”
Hayabusa: “How starved for affection were you? We’re not talking about a glass of water in the desert here.”
Enbi: “A-a-a-a-a-a-anyway, since we had nothing to do but observe each other and needed a way to keep each other awake, we decided to try a thought experiment. How could a murder happen in the Glass House where all the walls were transparent?”
9:35 – 11:00 PM
- We began discussing our thought experiment.
- Was the murderer really in the entrance hall? (It’s possible the murderer opened the front door and fired from outside. Then they could have stolen the keys and locked us in from outside. In other words, it was a complete third party.)
- Was there really a murderer at all? (It’s possible Shuuren shot himself in the chest with the bolt.)
Enbi: “There were a few possibilities, but they were kind of a stretch. If they fired the crossbow from outside, stealing the crossbow would’ve been difficult. And if Shuuren had killed himself, someone still would’ve seen it.”
Hayabusa: “But it would have been difficult to sneak around in that transparent mansion.”
Enbi: “We discussed the refraction of light and the properties of glass, but we couldn’t come up with an idea that really stuck out.”
Hayabusa: “We also discussed some things that weren’t directly related to Shuuren’s death.”
Enbi: “Stealing the crossbow or claiming it was stolen would suggest the crime was planned and they could have waited for Shuuren since he locked up along the same route every day. …But in this case, a lot of it came down to coincidence.”
Hayabusa: “For example, what would have happened if the tunnel hadn’t collapsed or the storm hadn’t blown in?”
Enbi: “Plus, the detective and me showing up wasn’t planned.”
Hayabusa: “If it was a carefully thought-out plan, they could have held off and waited for their next opportunity.”
Enbi: “But they did it anyway. In that case, they either couldn’t extend the schedule…”
Hayabusa: “Or what looked like a coincidence had actually been planned.”
11:00 PM – 12:00 AM
- We ran out of ideas for our thought experiment.
- Enbi and I began chatting to fight off sleep.
- We discussed our own lives.
- Enbi brought up the Hishigami Women.
- Enbi believes she will always be part of some case or another. But she can choose what role she plays, so she thinks taking on the deduction role will prevent her from ending up with the killing role.
- I’m not entirely sure how much I believe of that. Besides, even if she knows a lot about killing, if she’s using her power to solve the case as quickly as possible, doesn’t that just make her a good person?
- Oh, crap! I said too much!
- But I guess it’s fine since he said that.
Hayabusa: “We’re talking about some pretty meaningful stuff here, aren’t we?”
Enbi: “And you’re a really good listener, detective. It was almost all about me!”
Hayabusa: “And the problem is how obviously ‘dere’ it made you.”
Enbi: “Oh, shut up! I’d never felt those feelings before, so I didn’t know how to control them!!”
Day 2 12:00 – 1:00 AM
- Lights out.
- Starting with the bedroom group, people are giving in and falling asleep.
- Hatsutomo Naru wanted some coffee to help her stay up, so she went to borrow a grinder and siphon from the kitchen. Perhaps subconsciously, she likes to make coffee the same way as Yatsui Toshi.
- Enbi-chan won’t sleep!
- Matsushima Ren, the maid, left the living room. Something seemed to bother her.
- To keep her awake, the maid is taking a shower before it’s even light out. (2nd time)
- The detective feigned disinterest but still stared. (Grr)
- Akua, the wife who had joined the bedroom group, complained about the noise of the shower. She says she can’t sleep with that racket!
Hayabusa: “Again? I thought we already settled this!”
Enbi: “Let’s get back on topic. The main point here is the maid’s shower scene. Even the all-encompassing glass fogged up from the steam.”
Hayabusa: “And keeping the lights on would have been better, but they were turned off by a timer that ran on an internal clock.”
Enbi: Yeah, that’s the normal thing to think. But in that case…?”
Hayabusa: “Pay attention to one person’s behavior in particular. It looks normal enough, but this was in the middle of a murder mystery. Would you really feel that way then?”
1:00 – 2:00 AM
- The detective fell asleep. Zzz
- Enbi-chan can’t believe it.
Enbi: “I couldn’t bring myself to say it then, but you look really cute when you’re asleep.”
Hayabusa: “Sh-shut up. Either way, you have to sleep at some point during these long-term battles.”
Enbi: “But detective, it looks like you trusted me. A pistol-style crossbow would have a relatively weak bowstring, so even a child could have used it.”
Hayabusa: “Yeah, but I’d written you off as innocent pretty early on.”
Hayabusa: “Anyway, we ended up taking turns getting some sleep from here.”
- Enbi was gone when I woke up.
Hayabusa: “Things had gotten pretty bad. Everything was dark and I couldn’t see through the transparent walls without any lights on. I had no choice but to search for Enbi. A few others were asleep in the living room, but I avoided waking them. This was simply because I had no way of knowing if the person I asked to accompany me was the murderer or not.”
- I spotted a light that looks like a flashlight, so I headed in that direction.
- I found Enbi in the kitchen.
- Kariba, the bandaged butler, was preparing for breakfast. He had made some hot milk for Enbi.
Enbi: “So to sum up, there wasn’t any trouble at all!”
Hayabusa: “I can’t believe you!”
Enbi: “Sorry, sorry. But I saw the butler on the way to the kitchen, so I ended up following him.”
Enbi: “It didn’t actually happen, but it was a possibility. If the murderer who had the crossbow and keys had wanted to kill us all, the keys were actually scarier than the crossbow. I mean, if they turned on the gas in the kitchen, started a fire, escaped on their own, and locked the front door, we’d all be burned to death.”
Hayabusa: “Are you serious?”
Enbi: “There are other ways of starting a fire, though. I just wanted to monitor anyone getting close to something that could start one.”
6:00 – 6:30 AM
- We ate the breakfast Kariba made.
- Enbi took one of the wieners next to her fried egg and placed it on my plate.
- Some people are refusing to leave their rooms.
- Take that! Time to win his heart with food!!
- Kanpa, the wheelchair daughter, took a shower.
- Kariba, the bandaged butler, helped her out.
Hayabusa: “It’s kind of important that Kariba was the one to help with Kanpa’s shower. That means she didn’t get the help of Akua, a woman in her own family.”
Enbi: “Unless there’s a romantic explanation, some bitter possibilities present themselves.”
Hayabusa: “Kanpa and Akua didn’t get along.”
Enbi: “Since their ages were too close to be mother and daughter, it felt like the kids weren’t getting along with Shuuren’s younger second wife.”
7:00 – 8:00 AM
- The storm is still going strong outside. The landline and cellphones still aren’t working.
- For a change of pace, Kanpa demonstrates her own fortune telling.
- Hatsutomo Naru is just one of many false names, but her real name can’t be seen yet. She’s an expert at falsely representing companies and dragging their image through the mud and the Yatsui General Trading Company was one of her victims in the past. …Supposedly.
- The Hoshimi family supposedly increases its power to see into the past and the future by bringing the family together and not keeping any secrets from each other.
- However, Kanpa has a habit of mocking the people being manipulated by the fortune telling. If it was really 100% percent accurate and all-knowing, she says she wouldn’t have to live in a wheelchair and Kariba could have avoided his injury.
- Ren, the maid, fell asleep again. She quickly takes a shower. (3rd time)
- The detective stared as usual. (Roar!)
Enbi: “What are we supposed to do about this?”
Hayabusa: “If you don’t like it, then quit drawing attention to the shower scenes!”
Enbi: “The morning of the second day arrived and nothing had improved. I was gradually accepting this abnormal new life.”
8:00 – 8:10 AM
- To preserve the scene of the crime, I checked on Shuuren’s body in the entrance hall. There was no sign of anyone messing with it.
- It bothered me that Shuuren had crawled a few meters before dying.
- I moved his corpse and investigated the ground floor’s marble floor. I found a removable panel and discovered an entrance leading underground.
- Shuuren had apparently been killed before he could “lock up” here and the murderer apparently didn’t notice the door there. In other words, the door to the basement wasn’t locked.
Enbi: “It wouldn’t be a mansion mystery without a hidden passageway! What’s next? Will the mansion spin, lift up, or move horizontally!? Stay tuned!”
Hayabusa: “Oh, shut up. And it’s important that the murderer overlooked the door.”
- Enbi and I investigate the underground passageway.
- She hasn’t said anything about it, but Enbi is staying by my side like it’s normal.
- She’s even surreptitiously grabbing my sleeve.
Hayabusa: “That just makes me worried about you…”
Enbi: “That’s only because it’s a bulleted list! It only looks so sudden because you can only see the final result! There’s infinite space between the lines!!”
8:15 – 8:45 AM
- The basement is made from bare concrete and metal bars, so its closed-off structure is the exact opposite of the mansion. My heart is pounding.
- The passageway walls are covered with bookshelves and storage space. There’s all sorts of personal information on clients and summaries of meetings.
Hayabusa: “Now, then. This reveals the secret behind the Hoshimi family’s fortune telling.”
Enbi: “They gained the trust of clients, got some secrets from them in private meetings, and cobbled those together to look informed about the wide world and people’s narrow hearts. You can never trust someone who says something is ‘just between you and me’.”
Hayabusa: “This storage would be what the corporation group wanted to find. The secret behind the mountain road collapse and mannequin may have been there too.”
8:45 – 9:00 AM
- There’s a Japanese-style cell in the back of the basement. It contains Osakabe-hime, a Youkai of prophecy and divine power.
- According to Osakabe-hime, she can take walks outside with Shuuren’s permission. But to make sure she doesn’t escape, a traveler’s god is placed in the tunnel while she’s out.
Enbi: “He had some guts insisting on no secrets among family. Or maybe he was saying they should all share in the same crime.”
Hayabusa: “This might be sudden, but as you can tell from the fact that Youkai tend not to like me, Youkai do exist in this world. There’s no point in doubting it. By the way, here’s some data on Osakabe-hime.
“Modern Youkai Encyclopedia (Paid App Ver.) – ‘O’ Entries”
A woman in a twelve-layered kimono said to secretly live in Himeji Castle’s tower. Famous for her prophecies and divine power. Said to actually be a fox Youkai, but this may or may not be true.
Has many connections to historical figures such as giving a sword to Miyamoto Musashi as a reward for exterminating some Youkai.
The master of Himeji Castle has the right to meet Osakabe-hime once a year and receive a special piece of advice.
Enbi: “There’s a ton to that one, isn’t there?”
Hayabusa: “In fact, is she even a Youkai? Aren’t they just forcing that as an explanation for some unidentified divine power?”
Enbi: “But she didn’t seem to have much to do with Shuuren’s murder. It didn’t look like she could slip through the metal bars or curse him remotely.”
Hayabusa: “Really, she didn’t seem that interested in the human world. If she wanted revenge, she just had to wait two hundred years and that nouveau riche family would be destroyed by inheritance taxes and whatnot.”
Enbi: “The real demon kings aren’t in a rush.”
Hayabusa: “The other point was the mention of the tunnel.”
Enbi: “A traveler’s god is a god that resides inside a stone vessel. They’re set up at places like the borders of a village to keep disaster and disease from getting in.”
Hayabusa: “Osakabe-hime claimed the Hoshimi family had placed one in the tunnel.”
Enbi: “But they hadn’t. The narrow tunnel of their private road had been built so a shutter of rock could be lowered. It had looked like the tunnel had collapsed before the storm, but was that because someone had used a secret key?”
9:00 – 9:30 AM
- Enbi and I finished investigating the basement and returned to the first floor.
- The others were gathered in the second story hallway.
- When we checked, it turned out Ren, the maid, had been attacked while in the shower. (4th time) She had apparently been shot from behind by a crossbow and hit in the shoulder.
- Once again, no one saw the murderer.
Enbi: “The detective made a basic mistake here. He should have focused on the maid rather than the vanished murderer. If no one saw the moment of the crime, then she too had to have ‘vanished’.”
Hayabusa: “I was a little busy trying to stop the bleeding and get her conscious again. And to be honest, I wanted a target for my hatred. Walking through a glass mansion with no blind spots and attacking two people just isn’t normal.”
Enbi: “But that assumption was about to fall apart.”
9:30 – 10:00 AM
- I let Ren, the maid, rest in a second story bedroom.
- Akua, the wife, took a shower.
- Yatsui Toshi and Toyokawa Ryuu are getting belligerent. They had wanted to ask Shuuren something, but the maid had had nothing to do with it. They wanted to know why she had to be attacked.
- There doesn’t seem to be a connection between Shuuren and Ren. This hired maid was isolated. Was this a planned crime? Or had it been spontaneous?
Hayabusa: “There was also a rather dynamic possibility that Ren had been Shuuren’s mistress.”
Enbi: “Everyone could see everything in the Glass House. How would they meet in secret?”
Hayabusa: “Then it had to be a spontaneous crime for some other reason.”
Enbi: “Crimes of convenience are sometimes caused by completely unrelated grudges.”
Hayabusa: “Like the mountain road collapse or the mannequin? The corporation group would be one thing, but I can’t imagine a maid who never left the mansion would be involved. Oh, and her family name of Matsushima is the same as the construction company, but it isn’t that rare a name.”
Enbi: “Which meant…”
Hayabusa: “The maid may have known something about Shuuren’s murder.”
10:00 – 10:30 AM
- Enbi-chan figured out the trick.
- But it isn’t quite enough to identify the murderer.
- Enbi-chan takes action!
Hayabusa: “And here you go again.”
Enbi: “Eh? Oh, c’mon. It’s not that big a deal. All I did was pretend to be the murderer and attack the maid. And the ‘action’ I took was nothing more than hitting her on the back of the head with a blunt object.”
Hayabusa: “I really can’t believe you!!”
Enbi: “But since I couldn’t identify the murderer quickly enough, the maid would definitely have been killed if I didn’t take some kind of defensive measures. After all, the murderer could keep trying until they’re discovered.”
Hayabusa: “Well, yes…but as a police officer, I can’t praise you for what you did!”
Enbi: “Anyway, I had to create a situation where the murderer couldn’t act without standing out too much.”
Hayabusa: “In other words, Matsushima Ren had been attacked because…?”
Enbi: “She had figured out the trick, just like me. But then someone other than the murderer attacked the maid using the same trick. Once they knew silencing the maid wouldn’t keep the information from spreading, they would know killing her would be meaningless.”
Hayabusa: “Or that was your plan anyway.”
- Ren, the maid, was attacked and killed by the murderer. The cause of death was a crossbow bolt fired into the head.
Enbi: “I screwed up here. I tried to make it look like Person X had attacked the maid, but the murderer must have thought the maid faked it. They must have been pretty confident in their trick and doubted more than one person would figure it out.”
Hayabusa: “So all you did was put Matsushima Ren more squarely in the crosshairs.”
Enbi: “I sometimes wonder if there was some other way I could have done it. I know it would’ve been hopeless, though.”
Enbi: “The murderer was starting to figure out things were falling apart, so things speed up from here on.”
10:30 – 11:00 AM
- Dounyuu, the son, is dead. He committed suicide by grabbing a crossbow bolt and stabbing it into his own throat.
- His suicide note claims Shuuren’s fortune telling led to Yatsui General Trading Company and Matsushima Construction’s decline in rewarding quality work and ultimately to the shoddy construction that caused the road to collapse.
Enbi: “Case closed.”
Hayabusa: “How was I supposed to believe that!? It was too simple!”
Enbi: “The murderer was trying to make it look like Dounyuu was the culprit, so they didn’t even try to hide the trick this time. They left the stuff by the wall in place.”
11:00 – 11:15 AM
- I discovered the trick. The room is in plain view with the glass walls, but furniture like dressers and desks is placed by the walls such that it lines up and fills a single wall when viewed from one direction. In other words, a blind spot is created.
- The keys were hidden between the wall and the furniture. By placing another piece of furniture on the other side of the transparent wall, a small hiding spot appears.
- By repeatedly moving the furniture around, one could create and remove these blind spots, so they could only be found at the time of the crime.
- Ren, the maid, figured out the blind spot creation trick and was apparently attacked by the murderer while moving furniture to try to create a blind spot of her own.
Enbi: “Oh, honestly. I so wanted to call everything together to show off as I gave the answer.”
Hayabusa: “Apply that kind of pressure and I promise you the murderer would have run off. They were the one with the keys, after all.”
Enbi: “I couldn’t do it then, so let’s do it now! Picture the ‘three’ side of a die. Those are three columns in a square, transparent room. When viewed from above, the three circles are lined up diagonally, but when viewed from the side, they would block your view as a single large panel, right?”
Hayabusa: “But if they did that, you’d notice as soon as you set foot in the room. That’s why the murderer placed each of the obstacles in separate rooms. Looking in each room would only show a single column, but they still covered up the whole wall when looking through all of the rooms.”
Enbi: “The maid probably figured it out when she saw the steam fogging up the wall when she took a shower. Everyone assumed you couldn’t hide anything with the transparent walls, but if you overturned that, you could create a sealed room, an invisible black box.”
Hayabusa: “But anyone could move furniture. That wasn’t enough to identify the murderer.”
Enbi: “Yes. That’s why I had to lay a trap in the very end.”
11:15 – 11:30 AM
- I’ve narrowed it down to a single target.
Enbi: “Let’s go back over our information, detective. The murder weapon was a crossbow from Dounyuu’s collection. I think it would have been nearly impossible for any us or the corporation group to steal one since it was our first time in the mansion. We wouldn’t know there were crossbows there and, even if we had heard about it secondhand, we wouldn’t be able to put together a plan to steal one.”
Hayabusa: “And even if the murderer who had stolen the crossbow was from the Hoshimi side, Shuuren, the head of the family; Dounyuu, the son; and Ren, the maid, were already dead.”
Enbi: “That left Akua, the wife, or Kanpa, the daughter. But Kanpa was confined to a wheelchair and thus couldn’t move the furniture to create the blind spots. Since she and Kariba, the bandaged butler, got along well enough for him to help her take a shower, you might think they were working together…but that would have been difficult. Or rather, if Kariba was helping the murderer, there had to have been easier methods. Like poisoning the food.”
Hayabusa: “That left just one person.”
Enbi: “Akua, the wife. She was the only one left. She had taken a shower after the maid was attacked, but she might have been afraid she’d gotten blood on herself.”
Hayabusa: “I had wondered why they would attack when there were so many visitors, but it was the opposite. Without enough suspects around, she had known they would suspect her first.”
Enbi: “And if Akua was the murderer, I was pretty sure I could set up the perfect trap.”
11:30 AM – 12:00 PM
- Enbi told everyone about the underground cell and Osakabe-hime.
- Suspicion turned toward the previously unknown Osakabe-hime.
- Akua tried to defend that Youkai at the source of the fortune telling, but Kanpa mocked her.
- Kanpa said Osakabe-hime didn’t matter. Any bluff would work as long as they had the brand recognition of raising a monster that would tell them the future. Even if Osakabe-hime died here, they just had to get a different Youkai. She said the fact that Akua didn’t understand that proved she was an outsider.
- Everyone decided to go defeat Osakabe-hime. If that stopped the murders, it meant she had been the murderer. They all went to search out weapons and planned to gather in the entrance hall!
- C’mon, c’mon, everyone! Come with me!!
Hayabusa: “Not that they could have defeated the Youkai without a real Onmyouji showing up. And the Hoshimi family didn’t seem like the type.”
Enbi: “It was lucky Enbi-chan doesn’t specialize in Youkai, wasn’t it!? But that’s why I used that as bait. With this going on, the murderer would have to shift suspicion elsewhere. They would have been planning to stop after Dounyuu’s ‘suicide’, but now they’d have to continue.”
Hayabusa: “But why would Akua be that set on protecting Osakabe-hime? If she didn’t know about the basement, she never would have seen the Youkai.”
Enbi: “There were no secrets between family and that was how they brought their family together to strengthen their power to see into the past and future. Akua hadn’t fit into her new family, so learning about Osakabe-hime, their greatest secret, had to look like proof that they had accepted her. …And so she couldn’t let that proof be destroyed. She wanted them to accept her as part of the family by knowing all their secrets.”
Hayabusa: “How had she learned about Osakabe-hime if she’d never seen the Youkai?”
Enbi: “Who knows. There may have been some information written down. Akua had operated the tunnel’s traveler’s god to seal us in, so something may have referenced what that was originally for.”
Hayabusa: “But wait. Then Akua’s first target would be…”
Enbi: “Kanpa, the daughter who was so hard on her. Kanpa was also the one who said it didn’t matter if they got rid of Osakabe-hime. Ironic, isn’t it? She was fighting to prove she was part of the family, but she would end up with no one left.”
12:00 – 1:00 PM
- Enbi suggests we act separately.
- Enbi seems to want some heavy furniture to place on top of the basement entrance.
- The scariest possibility is if “she” panics, abandons her plan, and tries to run off on her own. With the keys, she can lock the door from outside, trapping us all inside.
- Meanwhile, “she” has never been in the underground passageways, so she doesn’t know their layout. If she thinks she can escape with Osakabe-hime that way, we can lure her into a dead-end and trap her.
Enbi: “Note that this is different from what I was saying before. It was supposed to be about Osakabe-hime, but here I am worrying about a human murderer with the keys.”
Hayabusa: “In other words, you were bluffing.”
Enbi: “To be honest, it’s easier to put together a plan based on people doubting you than based on them trusting you. The entrance hall is a wide-open space and, even if I managed to lure them away, it would be to a long underground passageway. That would end badly for us when Akua had a crossbow. They’d catch on quickly I was tricking them, but it didn’t matter. If I just asked them to protect Kanpa, they might betray me, but if I got them to choose the easiest path themselves, no one would complain.”
Hayabusa: “And in fact, a lot of them noticed something wasn’t right and started doubting you. Yatsui Toshi and Matsushima Ryou did, I think. You were just a kid and your argument had fallen apart from the moment you started discussing whether this was a Youkai or human murderer.”
Enbi: “Um, just to be clear, that was part of my plan. The trick to the murders was placing furniture along the walls in multiple rooms to cover an entire wall when viewed together, so you could actually eliminate the risk by splitting everyone up and having Hatsutomo Naru, Toyokawa Ryuu, and everyone else watching from multiple viewpoints. Creating a strained atmosphere and getting everyone to doubt me was the easiest way of doing that.”
Hayabusa: “In other words, you intentionally lost their trust so they wouldn’t listen to you. And that would naturally send them where you wanted them.”
Enbi: “Exactly. Even if we didn’t make a self-destructive charge at Akua and her crossbow, we could lock her up by placing a dresser on the door after she ventured underground. That wouldn’t get the keys back, but since she wouldn’t have any food or water, we could wait her out.”
Hayabusa: “And then…”
- None of the others showed up.
- I’m waiting for Akua all alone near the entrance hall.
(The following was added after the fact.)
- Akua shot me with a crossbow.
- After eliminating me, Akua entered the underground passageway.
Enbi: “That gave me a headache. What kind of stupidly honest person sticks with it even when you know you’re being tricked?”
Hayabusa: “I couldn’t tell what you were doing. Akua had two rewards: Kanpa and Osakabe-hime. If you wanted to stay with the safer one, Kanpa, that was fine with me. If I went there too, it just would have made things more dangerous. And…”
Hayabusa: “You asked me to do it. Plus, it allowed me to protect someone from the murderer.”
1:00 – 1:30 PM
- I inspected the detective near the entrance hall.
- His wound is deep. Removing the bolt would only make the bleeding worse.
- He needs to be transported to a medical facility and soon, but the mansion’s exits and the private road tunnel are sealed by Akua.
- I need to take the keys from Akua ASAP.
- This is my first time feeling a desire to do good for no personal gain.
- This goes beyond what they call “dere”. Hishigami Enbi has fallen in love for the very first time.
Enbi: “Enbi-chan’s scary once a heart of justice awakens within her! Whoosh, whoosh!!”
Hayabusa: “Oh, no. She’s not just mad! She’s swinging some kind of blunt weapon around! You always make my head hurt because nothing ever changes the fact that you’re a Hishigami Woman. Just like Mai.”
- Akua came out of the underground passageway with Osakabe-hime.
- As soon as the murderer showed up, Enbi-chan used the natural frequency of the glass to destroy the Glass House. Shards rained down on the entire entrance hall.
- Akua took the brunt of it and was half-killed.
- Osakabe-hime was an immortal Youkai, so she wasn’t harmed.
Enbi: “And that’s how justice won the day!”
Hayabusa: “You just glossed over it by mentioning the natural frequency, but what exactly did you do!? And I was collapsed right next to the entrance hall, but I didn’t get a single scratch from that!”
Enbi: “Oh, c’mon. That’s a secret of course. But if it was just glass, a burner and ice water might have been enough.”
- Enbi retrieved the keys.
- There was a storm outside, but it wasn’t powerful enough to block off the road.
- The survivors left and Kariba, the butler, lent me his shoulder.
- I borrowed a hard disk from the underground storage. That allowed me to continue investigating the mannequin incident.
- Also, Kariba-san, the bandaged butler, was under the mistaken impression that the wound on his face hadn’t healed and he was actually quite good looking.
- Enbi-chan used the keys to release the “traveler’s god” in the private tunnel. That just leaves waiting for the ambulance!
Hayabusa: “What was that about a hard disk? That’s theft!”
Enbi: “C’mon, no crass complaints right at the very end! And besides, the mansion was about to collapse and we had to evacuate, so I was really protecting the property they were about to lose.”
Hayabusa: “And who was it that destroyed the mansion in the first place…? I feel like I just ran across a hybrid of an arsonist and a burning building looter.”
Enbi: “But…huh? Didn’t we come across something else while putting together this report, detective?”
Hayabusa: “Hm? What are you talking about?”
Enbi: “Right here: Yatsui Toshi, Matsushima Ryou, Hatsutomo Naru, and Toyokawa Ryuu. What about the mystery of the collapsed mountain road and mannequin? If we look through this report and connect this part to this part and that part…”
Hayabusa: “You’ve got to be kidding me. We just solved a case several years after the fact.”
Enbi: “So there really was an answer.”
Translator's Notes and References
- Hishigami literally means Walter Caltrop God.
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