"Flow, My Tears," Said the Detective - Part 2/2
Even though, Detective Yasui never intruded, I wondered what was going on there. When I checked on them using [Nenrikin] I saw Baba, who had stopped her crying (acting), suddenly look into the distance, and yell “Oh, there’s my Mommy!” and happily dash off. Detective Gesui let out a tired sigh and saw her off. It seems it went well on her side. Baba had exceptional hearing. She must have understood the situation after listening to the sound of battle and our talk afterwards.
Kaburagi-san said she would cancel her marriage interview and move to Amanoiwato to explain explain everything to Detective Kumano, but I refused.
This time, in order to avoid Shouta-kun’s imprisonment, I got in the way of Kaburagi-san’s matchmaking. Kaburagi-san said it was okay since she didn’t intend to take it seriously from the start, but it’s not good to take her goodwill for granted and be spoiled.
Of course, if Kaburagi-san said she wanted to get married, marriage proposals would probably rush in like a tsunami. In that regard, it’s alright to miss couple of marriage interviews … I guess?
What if the suitor at the first or the second marriage interview were her soul-mate? Wouldn’t she miss her chance of marriage if she continues to postpone saying she could get married at any time, and gets absorbed in our secret-society activities?
One mustn’t forget the Article 5 our secret-society preamble: “Members live a double life between the ordinary and the extraordinary.” What value do you get from abandoning your ordinary daily life? If you forget about your ordinary life while being immersed in the extraordinary, you’ll get used to the extraordinary, and before you know it, that becomes your ordinary life.
That’s why it’s no good. Secret-society activities are crazy fun. But for that sake, you mustn’t sacrifice your daily life. It might not have been the best decision to interfere in the middle of a marriage interview, but it’s even worse to abandon it altogether.
With that reasoning, Kaburagi-san expressed her understanding. She promised she would apologize for leaving in middle of her marriage interview so as to not smear mud on the face of her suitor, and her parents who arranged everything.
Hmm. That’s fine then. Now, I want to use this as an opportunity to deepen my relationship with the reluctant Bear-san. All this time I have felt so lonely while keeping up my taciturn facade and not get along with anyone.
Before long, Shouta-kun brought Detective Kumano to Amanoiwato. At Shouta-kun’s request, we used Ig’s healing to cure Detective Kumano’s frostbite and bruises.
After Shouta-kun explained Detective Kumano about the World’s Darkness and Amaterasu, he exchanged contact with him and went home before he was too late for dinner with his family. Ig wanted to play with Shouta-kun, so she tagged along as well.
Left alone, Detective Kumano who sat at the counter absorbed in his thoughts as he glanced at the wall clock, said quietly.
“Bowmore, with rocks.”
It was already nighttime. In other words, it was time for the adults to talk.
I silently nodded and rotated the shelf on the back of the counter lined with empty liquor bottles. The lineup on the back was the same as the front, but it actually contained alcohol. It was a DIY gimmick that I had designed over one week-end.
I took out the whiskey he ordered. For the ice, I produced a special ice press (a mold that processes ice) in front of Detective Kumano’s eyes. His eyes rounded. Detective Kumano exclaimed in amazement while looking at the ice that was changing its shape when it was sandwiched between the molds.
Kaburagi-san came to Amanoiwato as a customer, but sinces she only drank the basic wine, the ice ball press we bought for 128,000 yen hadn’t seen the light of the day up until now. But its finally out. I’m still young and lacking in the mannerism of a bar master. That’s why I’m going to compensate with elaborate props and performances.
Detective Kumano, who swirled a sip whiskey in his mouth while staring at the ice in his glass, looked incredibly manly. Compared to his presence, I lose out big time. Why don’t you become the master. If you do that, everything will be perfect.
“Takahashi-kun was holding back.”
Detective Kumano muttered.
“The attack that froze the World’s Darkness. If he used it, I would have lost. He held back so he wouldn’t accidently kill me.”
I turned on the old record player and put the needle on the disc. Mellow jazz began to play inside the store.
“For Takahashi-kun, it’s only been a year and a half since he awakened his superpower. When it comes to actual combat its even shorter. You know what, master? My 40 years of diligent training was rendered useless by a brat who trained for a year and a half… Shake me a Vodka Martini.”
Detective Kumano emptied his glass and ordered one more. While I was preparing the glass and ice, Detective Kumano, who was clearly annoyed, continued.
“I absolutely despise his kind. It was once my childhood dream to beat the crap out of a stinky magician or an esper with my bare hands. I wanted to show what humans can achieve with their own body. And now I practically lost to a child who’s only been training for a year and a half and then also lost to the World’s Darkness. What was meaning behind all my effort? They are cowards. Cheaters. Those espers.”
Maybe because he was starting to get drunk, he’s getting straight to the point where it hurts. If you put it like that, I won’t be able to say anything in return, you know.
I’ve been training in telekinesis for 11 years now, but normal people aren’t able to destroy stars and planets even if they spend their whole lives training in desperation. For a martial artist like Detective Kumano who has trained his mind and body for many many years, it must look especially unreasonable.
Detective Kumano immediately emptied the cocktail. It seems that he wants to get badly drunk.
Well, there are days like that. Let’s get along well tonight.
“He’s protecting people from the World’s Darkness with that cowardly power. Would you not appreciate that?”
Detective Kumano yelled as if to say, ‘Don’t butt in with unnecessary talk’. Surprised, he took the glass from me and gulped it down at once. His face was already red. It’s inevitable if you continue to drink high-grade alcohol.
“Even the police! We’re protecting the peace of Japan! Every day! We don’t fight something fancy like the World’s Darkness, but we run around the city in the cold night hoping to catch even the tiniest of clues. We’re always moving after a tragedy has struck. And it’s always too late. But that’s all we can do. Blame it on Japan for being a law-abiding nation. Even so, we’re doing it, someone has to do it. That’s why we get into police. And we will do it.”
His words weighed heavy on my mind. It had the weight of the one who protected the peace that someone who’s just playing around will never ever have.
“Ah, I’m sure Amaterasu protects the peace from the World’s Darkness, it’s a splendid thing. A secret society that fights monsters with a small number of elites? Damn it, isn’t that cool? But hey, we’ve been protecting it since long as well! Eh? Do you understand? Do you understand what I’m saying?
Let the police do it.
Let me do it.
That’s why the police are there.
That’s why I became a policeman!
Idiot, what would the police do if they were saved by a child? Why are you so powerless at a time like this? I’m in police… Idiot…"
Detective Kumano stared at his glass and muttered some drivel. His outburst stopped, and deep sorrow drifted over him. His heart ached.
“Well, here’s a drink. It’s on the house.”
This is a bar. There’s only one way to heal your wounds. I’ll give you a low-proof cocktail with a good taste. Detective Kumano picks the glass with his staggering hands and begins to drink. He gulped it at once and seems to have calmed down a bit.
“Hey master, listen to me. Listen to me.”
“Yes, I’m listening.”
After that, I went along with Detective Kumano’s nonsense until morning when he laid out his long-cherished feelings while smelling like alcohol.
It was truly a good time where I got to act out the part of a proper bar master.
“Come to think of it.”
A few days after the marriage interview, Kaburagi invited Baba-Nyan to her mansion and showed her all her Chunni thesis that she had worked on while absentmindedly investigating the magic of another world. There was a mountain of documents and a whiteboard filled with writings on the antique round table around which the two of them sat and Baba-Nyan was being served with orange juice and fruit punch.
By the time the discussion about the rise of the weapon that would absolutely kill the Demon Lord (Platinum weapon in the Baba-Nyan’s world) and the beginning of the Demon Lord’s decline came to a close, Baba-Nyan tilted her head ans asked.
“Is Sago’s defense invincible?”
“…Why do you ask?”
“No reason. Just a passing interest. He seems to be far better at attacking than the Demon Lords of my world, but I was wondering what kind of defense he has.”
Saying that, Baba-Nyan took out the ice ball and jelly from her fruit punch and ate only the cherries in delight.
“Hmm… I see.”
There wasn’t anything particularly strange about the flow of this conversation. Baba-Nyan was talking in a carefree tone, however, there was a slight alarm going off in one corner of Kaburagi’s head.
Kaburagi wasn’t there when Sago had revealed the truth about the match-pump and Baba-Nyan snapped and they reconciled. She had just heard the second-hand account.
That’s why she had a thought. Is it that easy to let go of your anger and hatred when the dreams you have been harboring for hundreds of years are trampled like that?
Kaburagi had faith in the eyes of Sago who scouted Shouta Takahashi, who turned out to be an exceptional talent. If that person says Baba-Nyan is trustworthy, then that was likely the case and Kaburagi was satisfied with it.
However, a small part of Kaburagi was still suspicious. No matter what kind of person you are, there will be misunderstandings and mistakes will be made.
How could she deny the possibility that Baba-Nyan still deeply hated to be his support and was searching for a way to kill him with certainty?
Baba-Nyan, who was only eating the fruit from the fruit punch, looked just like a young girl. But her exceptional acting ability made her seriously difficult to read or mimic.
Baba-Nyan was from an extremely long-lived race from another world, and had a fundamentally different view of life than humans. Perhaps she really had a big heart and swallowed hundreds of years worth of anger, or perhaps she was pretending to be an ally and was planning to take revenge. Kaburagi couldn’t tell.
If Baba-Nyan was really suppressing her anger, it could explode by doubting her. For the time being, she was also an Amaterasu member and mistreating her just because of some suspicion would be unfair. But she couldn’t ignore the alarm in her head either.
Kaburagi gave a vague answer to Baba-Nyan’s question with a carefree tone that matched Baba-Nyan’s.
“As far as I can tell, it’s invincible. The barrier is deployed subconsciously. Even poison and radiation won’t work.”
That was a lie.
Sago’s barrier was not deployed when he sleeps, and poison does work. Although, it’s true that radiation doesn’t work.
On the of chance if Baba-Nyan was probing into Sago’s defenses, then this lie would be a huge deterrent. She would have no other way to kill him other than by using the PSI drive.
But if Baba-Nyan was really asking just out of curiosity, this would have cleared up her doubt.
There would be problem either way.
“I see, that thing he calls [Nenrikin] is incredibly powerful Kaburagi. Oh..by the way the fruit punch is delicious, but the jelly is not so good. Please leave it out next time. Now then, let’s continue our talk~”
Baba-Nyan casually moved the conversation along, returning to the discussion of the other world’s demon king’s defeat. Kaburagi gradually got absorbed in the story while listening to her exquisite way of talking that attracted people’s interest. Before long she forgot her slight doubt towards Baba-Nyan.
Just as a reminder
Gesui = Trash.
Bowmore = a drink.
rocks means ice.
Another thing I wanna ask. Should I keep Baba-Nyan or change it to Vava-Nyan? Just “Baba” sounds good but I am not sure about the “Nyan” part.