※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
Translated By :
- Ringo (/u/Ringo_17)
※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
ALL RIGHTS BELONG TO TAPPEI NAGATSUKI, THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR OF RE:ZERO STARTING A LIFE IN A DIFFERENT WORLD FROM ZERO, THIS IS A TRANSLATION OF THE FREE JAPANESE WEB NOVEL INTO ENGLISH
※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※ ※
ーーWith the 『Book of the Dead』 which had 『Natsuki Subaru』 inscribed on it in his hands, he stood still.
Widening his dark eyes in astonishment, Subaru felt his throat rapidly turning parched.
Modest expressions such as astonishing or stupefying would be far too lacking. What had struck Subaru at that moment was something much more serious, something as if numbing harm.
A lethal toxic which would wield affect only when used on Subaru, and nobody elseーー.
The 『Book of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』, was piercing through Subaru whilst commanding such powerful connotation.
Subaru: “Wh, y……”
So, the 『Book of the Dead』 not supposed to be here was present here.
What was supposed to be present in the third layer of Pleiades Watchtower, 『Taygeta』 were the 『Books of the Dead』 recording the lives of the departed. Having the book of a living being was contradictory.
Or perhaps, could this mean he simply, by chance, had found the book of a human with the same name and surname.
Subaru: “That would have actually been convincing, had this not been a different world……”
The possibility that rose to the surface in his mind, was instantly repudiated.
Though it was a matter of course, this place was a different worldーー in this place, where even the rules of naming would be vastly different from what Subaru was aware of, why would a name like 『Natsuki Subaru』 take birth here.
Even before that, there lay a decisive issue.
The title of that book of 『Natsuki Subaru』, had been written in Kanji.
From what all Subaru had witnessed till now, even letters were disparate in this different world. That is why, even if someone else, aside from Subaru, who did not know of the world’s letters were to see it, they would probably perceive this title as if being hieroglyphic characters or something of that sort.
If that were to be considered, the unbelievable chances of Subaru finding the 『Book of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』 here through sheer luck wereーー,
Subaru: “ーーIt’s predetermined and established, whom this belongs to.”
He could only think of that being true.
Once again, with the 『Book of the Dead』 in his hands, Subaru silenced himself and pondered.
The reason why Subaru happened upon this 『Book of the Dead』, was because he had depended upon the dim response he had spied out through 『Cor Leonis』.
This had not been the first or second time he had searched for a book in the library, though Subaru was mindful of it, discovering the book being aimed for in this enormous archive was a deed next to impossible to achieve.
Perhaps, the kind unattainable unless god’s invisible hand was being put to work.
Subaru: “Or perhaps, not god, but someone’s……”
Subaru convicted, as if having anticipated that.
The rest lay, in the authenticity of this 『Book of the Dead』ーー whether what was depicted here, was truly the life of 『Natsuki Subaru』 or not. If it was depicted indeed, then what sort of a trick was behind it.
As the solemn truth, Subaru was here, alive.
If the 『Book of the Dead』 of this Subaru was truly here thenーー,
Subaru: “Am I being treated as deceased, ever since I lost my memories…… the 『Books of the Dead』 of 『Taygeta』, that Hall of Memories, is even observing the worlds I die in……?”
If that were the case, then in no way is it inconceivable that it was depicting Subaru’s 『Deaths』 in some type of form through the 『Book of the Dead』. However, in that case, what did that make of 『Return by Death』.
Subaru: “Whether it rewinds time, or does it rebuild the world itself, I had given a thought to both but……”
For the argument’s sake, in the case that the 『Books of the Dead』 assumed a method to generate the book of 『Natsuki Subaru』, it could not be helped but to reach the conviction that the latter had much more likelihood. If that holds true, then the phenomenon which encased this Natsuki Subaru was not something as charming as 『Return by Death』 butーー,
Subaru: “Am I, an idiot. No, I am an idiot…… Damn, coward.”
Sensing his contemplation disarray into a slant, Subaru abused himself.
Why his thoughts had gone astray, he understood the reason for that by immediately noticing his own cowardice. ーーHe was merely, frightened of the 『Book of the Dead』.
What would happen when he would read the book of 『Natsuki Subaru』.
He was frightened, of that happening whose course was completely unfathomable. That is why, pursuing the hypothesis lacking all foundation, he was trying to delay it and keep delaying it.
Of opening up the first page, of the book within his hands.
Though it was not a hypothesis which came into being merely five minutes ago or anything, the fact that the 『Book of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』 was present here was strange, but for Subaru, it was also salvation.
Subaru also considered the evidence that it had not popped up and appeared at just this instant.
However, along with that, it also held the meaning that a 『Natsuki Subaru』 other than himself, had certainly existed and had walked his own path in this different world, and also that Subaru was trampling upon those footsteps from above, laying waste to them, and painting them out.
That is why, all that was left was to gain confirmation.
Subaru: “First of all, as the 『Book of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』…… where does this thing start from, and where does it end at?”
At Meili’s instance, precisely from her infancy onwardsーー ever since she gained awareness of ■, ever since her memories had been established as memories, even her half death was able to be followed up to.
However, how would things unfold in Subaru’s case. ーーHaving read the 『Book of the Dead』, it originated with sprouting as self-consciousness identical to that of Meili, facing growth over time, and finally, where it all came to an end.
If 『Natsuki Subaru』 is being counted as deceased instead of the present Natsuki Subaru who lost his memories, to follow up to 『Natsuki Subaru’s』 memories till the moment immediately preceding the loss of memories, would be natural, or perhaps not.
Instead, perhaps it would follow up to the memories of the present Subaru, who had lost his memories, and awakened inside the tower. In that scenario, which 『Death』 would it choose for the end.
Otherwise, as Reid’s 『Book of the Dead』, what would merely be present would be a wreckage of memories turned void.
Just as the memories of Reid, which had been recorded in the 『Book of the Dead』, had disappeared from within the book in order to reconstruct him as the trial taker of this tower, the memories of 『Natsuki Subaru』 had also possibly disappeared.
That is why, what would be visible after opening this book would not be the memories of 『Natsuki Subaru』, butーー,
Subaru: “ーーIn the end, what do you want to do, cowardly bastard.”
Does he desire to see it, does he desire not to see it.
Disdaining his own self, who had been unable to easily respond to that, reprimanding the fearfully curled up ■, he exhaled.
After coming this far, it was inconceivable to opt for not seeing it. Even if it had risen to the surface as an option, he could not even envisage the lunacy of choosing it.
That is why, that is why, that is why, that is why, that is whyーー,
And then, and then, and then, and then, and thenーー,
Taking a powerful breath in, he opened up, the 『Book of the Dead』.
And, the journey of 『Natsuki Subaru』, of an unknown origin and an unknown terminationーー.
ーーThis is seriously bad.
Tasting a solid sensation on his face, his brain was being scorched by the flaming heat in his abdomen.
Violent fever which restricted even his breathing, his head felt hot as if magma had been poured into his blood vessels. Yet his limbs turned colder and heavier, the inconsistent sensations jolting his existence down to the very soul itself.
His thoughts screamed about what had occurred. His thoughts screamed that he must do something.
With those flowing in and intertwining, he gave rise to a screech.
However, his consciousness, which was screaming he must do something, proved to be futile.
The moment he moved his hands in an attempt to break out of the deadlock, and touched his guts, which were the origin of the scorching heat, his palm was drenched wet with thick blood, and he understood that further blood also had the floor drenched.
ーーAh, is all of this, my blood.
Though he was unaware of the amount of blood that had flowed on and inundated the floor, the bleeding had not been of the level of blood donation and so forth. The source of his life streaming out, did not put a halt to the fragile lamp of life.
In short, his flesh body had already commenced the countdown to death.
Even still, the reason why ■ had not died yet, was because for this life of his, which was heading towards its death, there yet remained a mission to fulfill.
ーーHe had, to raise his voice.
He must raise his voice.
Watch out. It’s dangerous. Don’t come here. Run. Without turning back even once, run at full speed.
And, he must inform about the hazard.
He must convey it to her, inform her about danger, so that she does not enter this place.
He was unable to raise his voice.
What spilled out instead, was the nauseating warm blood clot. With his throat clogged by that, he was rendered incapable of bringing out even a single uncouth word. Violently coughing, the scorching heat in his abdomen expanded.
Ache and agony, misery and disorder, andーー,
The tone of the silver bell’s voice, eventually took a step into the space it must not enter.
He had to stop that, no matter what.
And yet, he did not make it.
Though he had to do that even if it meant selling his life away for it, just because his guts had gotten lacerated.
A scream echoed, someone collapsed down onto the floor along with a violent report.
The hand of that fallen someone, overlapping with hand of his fallen self, was an offensive prank on part of the far too ironic fate. In all ways, the wickedness of the one known as fate was far too onerous to describe with words.
Those weakly trembling fingers, softly grasped that overlapping hand. Grasping back that sensation of fingers, as if they were clinging and relying upon, Subaru deeply, deeply, along with that clump of blood, inhaled.
The overflowing clot of blood, the seeping and streaming away life. He could not, stop that outward flow of blood.
No longer, could he do anything. This situation, had reached its absolute limits.
All due to a single powerless, incompetent man, everything was going to start afresh.
That is why, his vow dyed with this blood, wielded no significance.
Even though he knew nothing could be done, his idiocy yet commanded him to vow.
Even though he knew it was over.
Even though he knew it will be over.
As if those were not coming to an end, disgracefully, he vowed.
“I will, for sureーー”
At the next instant, heーー Natsuki Subaru 『Natsuki Subaru』 『Natsuki Subaru』 lost his life.
The moment the connection was severed, Subaru sensed firm pain at the back of his head.
Subaru: “Gahーー ~hk.”
The impact reverberating in his skull, he hallucinated as if he had been suddenly struck from behind, but he immediately understood that he was mistaken. Because, Subaru’s body had collapsed right behind, and he could feel the entirety of his back make contact with the chilling floor.
Subaru: “This, place is……”
Icy and dim, not in the soiled building, but he was in the library of 『Taygeta』.
Slowly pouring energy back into his body, turning about his dumbfounded head, Subaru turned his neck aroundーー and then, touched his own guts with great perplexity.
There supposed to be present, was the wound which would diminish his life.
Subaru: “Not, there…… not there, not there, the wound is, not there. The slash, in the guts, is not there…… ~hk.”
Touching his guts countless times, he confirmed the disappearance of the origin of scorching heat. Within the spectacle he had witnessed immediately previously, that utmost vivid sensation was vanishing.
He had heard that the brain hallucinates ache far too scorchingly hot as a “fever”. A phenomenon identical to what had occurred. In other wordsーー,
Subaru: “ーーA memory, of having the guts be slashed open, and dying.”
The end of having the guts cut open by a sharp edged tool, drowning in the foam of blood and powerlessness, and dying.
Finally, if he himself had alone been the one to die by that, it was still excusable. However, that was not how it had been.
What he whispered, at the very end of the end, the girl he had been unable to save, her nameーー her alias.
Within that memory, the silver-haired young girl he recognised had fabricated her name and come in contact with Subaru. What had been the reason behind that. Though it was evident no evil intent was the reason for it.
Subaru: “……Still, dying such an uncouth way.”
Putting his hand on his forehead, Subaru ruminated about what had occurred to his own body.
Summoned to the different world, wandering aimlessly in the town with foolish positivity, picking up a quarrel with delinquents and almost dying, saved by Satella from that, and assisting her in her search for what she was looking forーー,
Subaru: “Completely useless……”
At the final moment, without even conveying the crisis he was supposed to convey, he ended up having her get involved as well.
Not just dying wastefully, the word vain in the expression dying in vain could not even make for an excuse.
The life of Natsuki Subaruーー 『Natsuki Subaru』 could never compensate for it.
It was not as if he had gained absolutely nothing from it.
Subaru: “ーーThis was, the 『Book of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』.”
That alone was the certain, absolute, unquestionable truth.
Hopeless, foolish, weak, irredeemable 『Natsuki Subaru』.
He continued to enlarge his absurd self-consciousness, overlapping with that, averted his eyes away from his lack of filial piety. And finally, using being summoned into the different world as a convenient means of escaping, and by exhibiting pessimistic positivity, he became a swindler trying deceive himself, those around him, anything and everything.
The result of that idiocy, had tied together with the tragedy in that loot storehouse.
What a pretentious, naive, and foolish failure had it been.
How come, could he stay defenseless at that hazardous place. What gave your idiotic self such baseless confidence. Like that, it would not be odd to get killed overseas, let alone in a different world. That lack of vigilance was to blame. The result of it all, must be that.
It had been so unsightly, such that he would have wanted to kill himself had he survived.
Subaru: “That hopeless, idiotic bastard…… but.”
Evidently, it had been fatal foolishness, but it was fortuitous to have it affirmed.
Putting a check on his rage, enduring it, he scrutinized that truth closely.
The 『Book of the Dead』 was certainly functioning. That book had recorded the death of 『Natsuki Subaru』. And, it thrust a great number of truths, which were a matter of course for 『Natsuki Subaru』, at Natsuki Subaru, for whom there was no way to know them.
ーーTo name it specifically, it was the sequence of events of obtaining 『Return by Death』.
As per convention, an existence who was god, or wielded similar strength, normally in a transcendental state of being, summoned Subaru to the different world.
However, for that 『Natsuki Subaru』, if he were to not have the memories of being summoned by such a transcendental being, there would be no occasion where he would get to know whom he got the power granted to him from and how he grew conscious of that power.
That was something Subaru could affirm, who had seen the end of that 『Natsuki Subaru』 for himself.
At the very end of the end, though he had been blabbering things without knowing when to give up, at that moment, 『Natsuki Subaru』 was supposed to not have any confirmation that he would overcome death, and rewind time.
At the very least, he himself had been like that. ーーThinking that far, he abruptly noticed.
That he, and 『Natsuki Subaru』, had not been objected well visually.
The reason for that, evident.
Subaru: “It’s diving more deeply in, than on, Meili’s instance……”
When he had read Meili’s 『Book of the Dead』, and personally experienced her life, he had tasted the sensation of having his mind undergo influence quite severely as well. Halfway melting together with her personality, Meili appeared within his mind as a symptom of hallucination, such that she said all what she wanted to say, and was toying around with Subaru.
Above all, that had ultimately been a Meili fabricated by Subaru’s consciousness, utterly unrelated to the real Meili, an illusion brought forth by chaos, he was aware of that.
However, this instance’s 『Book of the Dead』 demarcated a line between itself and Meili’s experience.
All things said and done, in the chaos immediately after reading Meili’s book, still present were clues to differentiate between himself and her. The difference in gender, the difference in age, the difference in values, there were plenty.
Detaching himself from her through those clues, even if slightly, it was a possibility to withdraw the comprehension that she was an entirely different existence.
However, that was not how it was this time.
None other than he himself was the party concerned. His self who was not himself, a situation which normally would not manifest, it layed expectation upon Natsuki Subaru, and pushed him into his fight with himself.
His fight with himself. ーーJudging by mere words, those were not words too cliché, but they were words which evidently and straightforwardly denoted the situation which Subaru had currently been placed in.
The truth is, he possessed a negative outlook.
Overlapping with his self, rather meant an act of painting his self out. The water washed by the dark paint called 『Natsuki Subaru』, dyed him as if with a paintbrush that had been dipped in that.
Subaru: “ーーEmilia. Emilia, Emilia, Emilia, Emilia, Emilia.”
At the sensation of feeling himself be painted out, Subaru called Emilia’s name, as if it were some magic.
The reason why he chanted Emilia, that reason was evident. The 『Natsuki Subaru』 inside the 『Book of the Dead』, did not recognise her as Emilia.
Trusting the alias he had been told, he saw through his duties as a buffoon till the very end of the end.
That is why, that was the difference between the present Subaru, and 『Natsuki Subaru』.
With the roots of his teeth quivering, fearing the sensation of his self being whittled, Subaru looked at his feet. The single book he had dropped thoughtlessly, that had fallen there.
He continued to observe, such that 『Natsuki Subaru』 would have died.
If considered now, mysteriously enough, the 『Book of the Dead』 commenced from the moment he arrived into the different world, from when he had shouted out the change of worlds with a foolishly bare expression. Even though for Meili’s instance, it had properly commenced since she gained the awareness of ■ーー no, for now, all that was of no significance.
The problem was, the continuation to that 『Book of the Dead』.
Subaru: “You must be thinking, the same, “Natsuki Subaru”……”
Thanks to the 『Book of the Dead』, he was able to witness what was perhaps the 『Death』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』 when he was first summoned into the different world for himself.
However, that was merely the beginning.
That 『Natsuki Subaru』, must have also utilised the power of 『Return by Death』.
Otherwise, that may have been a power which had manifested not in the form of 『Return by Death』 but something further different. ーーNo, that was the natural state of affairs.
Rewinding time at will, that was much more convincing.
For 『Natsuki Subaru』, who was met by Emilia, Beatrice, Ram, Echidna, Julius, Meili, Shaula, Patrasche, Gyan, and was expected to play an active role, something like that was much more suitable.
In that caseーー,
Subaru: “That must be there, ahead of this……”
『Natsuki Subaru』, who seemed to be no different from Natsuki Subaru.
However, there present was something decisive which caused that 『Natsuki Subaru』 to be 『Natsuki Subaru』. Seeking that, Subaru, at once, held the book in his hands.
And, closing his eyes, took deep breaths.
With the book in his hands, Subaru counted the beating of his chest. And while calming his ■ down, he slowly commenced walking.
A slow gait, however, straightforward, lacking all faltering.
Before long, where Subaru had reached was in front of the bookshelf, and as he stretched his hand outーー,
Subaru: “ーーSecond book.”
The single book following 『Natsuki Subaru』, made a weak assertion of itself through 『Cor Leonis』.
△ ▼ △ ▼ △ ▼
ーーThe progress 『Natsuki Subaru』 made, was unsightly, haphazard, irredeemable.
“Completely useless. A novice as per appearance, with crude movements. Neither with any Divine Protections nor with any skills, imagined that there would at least be some instinct or intelligence, but not even that. Just, why must you challenge.”
Tormented by the self-indulging mighty enemy, he was minced without being able to even launch a proper counterattack.
And in the environs of his wounded self, was a bloodstained old man and a golden-haired girl, collapsed. Neither of them could be saved. He could not even move.
“Slowly, slowly, slowly, slowly, slowly, agonize.”
Before long, with his guts sliced, with his eyes sliced, within the world where he lost his eyesight, with a time limit running against his life, he lived the time until his death nestling close with dismay.
Until the very end of the end, all whilst fearing, shivering, dreading, disgracefullyーー,
△ ▼ △ ▼ △ ▼
“Hey, did you get stabbed.”
“It can’t be helped, you know. Try running outside. It’s more than just difficult.”
“A~h, this won’t do. If the insides of the guts get wounded then it’s death for sure…… The clothes are all a mess too.”
Fallen with the opponent overhead of him, did he truly intend to make such heedless dialogue.
He must use his brain for such worthless thoughts, otherwise he would be rendered unable to comprehend the shocking pain piercing through his back.
A technique to escape pain, or a method to protect himself, to have possession of them would have astonished him to the bottom of his ■.
He was unable to save himself, from the truly futile, vain death.
Calling the girl Satella while she was not Satella, having to hear harsh words from her due to that, unable to sense the strikingly obvious situation, killed by the opponent whom he already had tasted before abandoning thought.
A suitable end. Why, from the beginning to the end, could he not live without regretting even for a second, even for a minute.
Enough. This world was going to end. He knew it.
Because from the very beginning, he knew and could see 『Death』, and henceforth came here. That is why, if there was not something decisive present, it was the end of this world. As it is the end, as it is the end, go to the next one. Go to the next, to the next, to the next, to the next, to the next, to the next. Otherwise, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts it hurts and it hurts and it’s painful and it’s unbearably hurtful but something must be carried on to the nextーー.
The demise that was brought to him whilst he was asleep, contrary to a swift and easy end, was accompanied with mercilessness as if chilling venom was poured into his blood vessels.
The arrival of the 『Death』 whereby he couldn’t even comprehend he had died, compared to the 『Deaths』 till now in which he was unable to detach pain and suffering from himself, was perhaps the easiest one is what he believed.
However, in no way was that true.
Why, did he die. First of all, did he really die.
Within humans fearful of 『Death』, the wish to die as if sleeping is substantially present, but if Subaru, who had experienced that, were to be asked, then he would respond that it was not worth wishing for.
In 『Death』, there lies the meaning of 『Death』.
In the demise, denouement of life, something which is learnt from it must be attached to the end.
Within chaos and despair, fright and yearning, Subaru sought the subsequent 『Book of the Dead』. He must unravel what had occurred. He must unravel, what had killed his selfーー.
ーーMysteries invited further mysteries, as incomprehensible and irrational 『Deaths』 followed him.
Overlapping ends, continual tragedies.
Though he had refused dying as if sleeping, dying as if being shattered, as if being gouged out, were indeed not pleasant either.
From next to next, his life was aimed for, robbed, shattered, and finally, betrayed.
Why, was no longer the question for that.
Why, must he have to save the blue-haired girl, who had killed his self.
Why, did his self become so frantic in order to save her, why, did she give such a powerful push to Subaru’s back, who was crushed and knelt down.
Why, did he gain strength by her words, and resolve to move forward.
Ahead of betrayal, he earnestly yearned.
For the desire which had actually not been betrayed, for the world which affirmed that it was correct.
『Natsuki Subaru』, offered his life as indemnification for the sake of the fruitless, sorrowful misunderstanding of saving someone, and prized it open through sheer strength.
Meeting Emilia, meeting Puck, meeting Felt, meeting Grandpa Rom, meeting Reinhardt, meeting Elsa, meeting Beatrice, meeting Ram, meeting Rem, meeting Roswaal, meeting Petra, meeting the residents of Arlarm villageーー,
ーーNo matter what, he will thrust refusal at any muddy stream that may advance upon them, is what he believed.
Subaru: “Ugh, bhu…… ~hk.”
Putting a check on his lips, facing assailing death once again, Subaru knelt down in the library of 『Taygeta』. Without supporting his body, he collapsed onto the bare ground as if falling.
Subaru: “Hah, hah……”
His breath was rough, what drenched the entirety of his body was abundant cold sweat.
Whether it was hot, whether it was cold, whether it was bitter, whether it was sweet, whether it was agonizing, whether it was pleasant, his feelings were blended into a heterogeneous mixture of likes and dislikes, black and white, and he was unable to comprehend the correct answer.
It felt as if he was being struck from all angles and directions ceaselessly, from next to next.
Subaru: “……With this, eight books.”
Discovering the 『Books of the Dead』 of 『Natsuki Subaru』, and ever since he commenced reading them, he was merely piling up the number of books.
To say the number of books, was something odd in itself as well. Not that the numbering kept on ascending, originally, to have the “next book of the same series” for a book present in this library was not how it was supposed to be.
Yet, the books of 『Natsuki Subaru』 kept on piling up the number of books readily, and continued.
Adding to the mystery, the structure of not being able to find the next book of 『Natsuki Subaru』 unless the first book of 『Natsuki Subaru』 was readーー it all commenced orderly.
Without skipping a single 『Death』 for the purpose of an interval, he followed the footsteps of 『Natsuki Subaru』.
And, whilst following the footsteps, he thought.
About how tactlessly frank, incorrigible, immature 『Natsuki Subaru』 was.
Particularly the last book, observing the fate of the eighth 『Book of the Dead』, it was impossible to not feel that way.
Immediately after the announcement of the royal election, fracturing his relationship with Emilia, ultimately, merely hurting her ■ simply because he could, without any apology or retrospection, dying within the chaos was 『Natsuki Subaru』.
His self who was reading the books, sunk with his consciousness equivalent with the subjectivity of the 『Book of the Dead』.
Merely the people concerned were supposed to particularly experience that effect, but it was still difficult to tolerate.
His self, who thought why did he not understand, was present.
On the other hand was his self, who thought why did he lament by not understanding through that, as well.
Subaru: “Don’t be trapped, in the past……”
It was a tragedy he had witnessed with these eyes an instant ago, that is why, his body ached as if being torn off.
However, that was the past. At maximum, a happening that had occurred in the past.
Even if it was a happening right in front of the eyes for 『Natsuki Subaru』, who faced 『Death』 at that instant.
Even if it was a happening right in front of the eyes for Subaru, who was in agreement with 『Natsuki Subaru』, who faced that instant.
That was the past.
Persisting by turning into a wound difficult to forget, it was the past.
That is why, at the present instant, take a breather and escape the impact. Forget it. That someone, killed Emilia. That someone, committed that terrible spectacle in the village.
If not, then ■ would get shattered.
What would he do, should Subaru’s ■ shatter here, rendered unable to stand up.
How would someone, do something. 『Natsuki Subaru』 was not present here. That is why, there was no other choice but for Subaru to somehow manage through.
Subaru: “Not, yet……”
ーーHas it been found.
There was supposed to be something decisive existing, bestowed only upon 『Natsuki Subaru』.
It would be the key to precisely distinguish between Natsuki Subaru, and 『Natsuki Subaru』. At the very least, until that key was procured, this voyage of going through 『Books of the Dead』 shall not terminate.
The decisive key, which made Natsuki Subaru grow wings and attain flight, as 『Natsuki Subaru』.
The key which changed him into the saviour who could catch Emilia, Beatrice, Rem, Ram, Echidna, Julius, Meili, Shaula, Patrasche, Gyan, from falling.
At the current instant, there were no signs of it.
『Natsuki Subaru』 could not possibly possess the mettle, the magnanimity, to be a saviour or a hero, to be able to fulfill the immense duty of saving someone.
What he possessed was merely standing out stubbornness, and the good fortune of being blessed by the people around him.
However, that was not all.
It was not that formless “something”.
He possessed the omnipotent key, something which was further apparent, evident, which could be recognised at a single glance, which convinced everyone that he had the ability because he possessed that.
He possessed it. That is why, seeking thatーー,
Subaru: “ーーNumber, nine.”
Once again he tackled, the samsara of 『Death』, whirling with mayhem and chaos, betrayal and despair.
His wish, 『Natsuki Subaru』. To turn into you, as fast as possible.
ーーBefore I, am no longer able to bear with your footsteps, your wounds, 『Death』, in my ■.
ーー『Deaths』, were accumulated relentlessly.
ーーEnds, were relentlessly accumulated.
Each time he felt ache, each time he was in agony, each time he lost something, each time he was robbed of something, he heard the sound of ■ cracking.
Crying and screaming why and how, gritting his molars thinking it ends here, standing up whilst vomiting blood, sheathed in wounds, he advanced.
The struggle of an uncouth man risking his life, was present there.
Not once but twice, not twice but thrice, not thrice but four times and so forth, getting cornered by situations and expiring, yet, he held his ground in order to smash through the lock of turmoil.
That was amazing. Plenty amazing. Truly worthy of respect.
To not give up, that was something quite amazing. Even after experiencing so much, gritting teeth so much, to fight to the bitter end was amazing. Truly admirable. Improved opinions. ーーBut, that was not it.
But, that was not it. That was not it. That was not it. That was not it indeed.
Subaru: “Something was…… ~hk.”
ーー”Something” was, supposed to have happened, isn’t it.
“Something” must have happened. Otherwise, it would not make sense. Otherwise, things would not hold true.
“Something” happened, which made the impotent, irremediable Natsuki Subaru develop wings, attain flight and turn into 『Natsuki Subaru』, who could save everyone, someone, Emilia and the others, that was how it was supposed to be.
That was why, he was searching for it, dying, losing sanity, with bloodshot eyes.
Upon each instance of reading the 『Books of the Dead』, personally experiencing the impact, terror, and the agony of 『Death』 which 『Natsuki Subaru』 had to taste by trifling with the altering situations, he grew further desperate and pursued his search.
Yet, he was unable to find a single clueーー,
Subaru: “Ugh, a~a~a~a~a~ーー ~hk ~hk!!”
He struck his head onto the floor.
It was alright when he was in the midst of witnessing it. However, the instant he returned, his ■ was fomented with disgrace.
Subaru: “Dad…… mom…… ~hk.”
There had been 『Natsuki Subaru』, who exchanged words with his father and mother, and apologized to the two of them.
There had been 『Natsuki Subaru』, who was thrown into the different world, and for the sake of residing in this place, bid farewell to those two.
Even after carelessly forgetting what all his self had committed, knowingly of the fact that his parents would be saddened, conveying words of love for self-satisfactionーー.
Subaru: “Ugh, bhu, e~e~e~gh.”
He vomited. His tears, overflowing.
What was hurtful, what was excruciating, was that he was painfully aware of the feelings of 『Natsuki Subaru』, and the fact that Subaru also got to know, that his parents forgave it.
Please don’t forgive. Please curse. He wished his parents would speak ill of him, call him out for lacking filial piety.
However, they did not act that way.
Neither his father nor his mother, be as per Subaru’s wishes. In order to console himself, he wished his parents to call him a petty human or things similar. He was unable to achieve that.
Subaru’s father, Kenichi. Subaru’s mother, Naoko. ーーThey were the greatest couple of parents.
There had been his self, who was happy for that, there had been his self, who approved of the judgement 『Natsuki Subaru』 took, despite lacking all rights to be saved, there had been his self, who was going to be saved, making his ■ unsightly.
ーーThis. Was this the source for it? With this being the reason, did he turn into 『Natsuki Subaru』.
Subaru: “No…… no, no, no! That’s not it! Not something like, this!”
Scratching his head violently, striking his aching eyebrows with his fist, Subaru disparaged his own self.
What Subaru sought, was not spiritual salvation. What he sought was a key, ーーa power further evident, which was established in terms of proper efficacy.
The power which Subaru was ignorant of, which only 『Natsuki Subaru』 was cognizant of.
Just as Subaru had succeeded in the manifestation of 『Cor Leonis』, the special “something” which only 『Natsuki Subaru』 had awakened, that, that was.
Subaru: “The key to change this situation, I have to believe it is, or……”
The laceration of his guts, which had been the very last cause of his death from the present moment, touching the wound he was supposed to have from that, Subaru whispered.
His memories, started to overlap with what he had witnessed in Meili’s 『Book of the Dead』. The assault on the mansion, Meili’s both beloved and troublesome elder sister, Elsa’s attack. A natural enemy for 『Natsuki Subaru』.
However, that was all about a world where everything came to an end.
That was all about a world which 『Natsuki Subaru』 already surmounted.
What was crucial, was not sympathising with 『Natsuki Subaru』. But unveiling, and obtaining, the deception only he was supposed to possess, which only he was using.
For that, only for that, read the 『Books of the Dead』.
ーーBecause only for that, Natsuki Subaru had been dying and redoing his actions.
Subaru: “Please tell me, 『Natsuki Subaru』! ーーHow are you special! How can only you, stay being special! There must be “something”, right!?”
Subaru: “”Something”, must have changed you! “Something”, must have rid you of your uselessness, and turned you into someone else!”
Subaru: “Please change my weak, pathetic, petty self who can’t be useful for shit! I’m fed up now! I can’t see everyone suffering, not anymore!”
Subaru: “”Something”…… “something”! Is there, right!? If “something” isn’t there then, it doesn’t make sense…… “something”, happened…… that’s why, you are…… different from, me…… it has to be that way……”
ーーIt has to be that way, or he will be rendered incapable of doing anything, but to simply watch.
Subaru: “You were, the same as me, weak, petty, completely powerless……”
ーーKneeling down time and time again, and on each instance having someone give a push to his back, as he wanted to recompense everyone who acted courteously towards him, as they had acted kindly towards him, he wanted to pay them back.
Subaru: “Please, 『Natsuki Subaru』. I request you. Please, just stop……”
ーーIt would have had been much, much better, had he been a superhuman.
ーーHe wished for him to be an existence completely dissimilar to his self, one who had transcended above weakness with both his ■ and body.
ーーThat is why, he wished to be convinced by him that he had done, what his self could never achieve.
Drawing books out as if plucking berries, having his head struck by continually stockpiling 『Death』, all whilst having ■ shatter upon each instance of that, eagerly, earnestly, as if sipping mud, he ate into his life.
But still, until the very end of the end, he did not cast aside the possibility he clung ontoーー.
He opened up, the book he had in his grasp.
With the preparedness of his brain tissues being churned, his ■ being violated, his soul being humiliated, he opened it up.
After all, it was far more painful to have the very last hope severed rather than feeling ache or anguish.
Subaru: “You get it, right, 『Natsuki Subaru』……”
As if, seemingly seeking consent, he called out to the person concerned who was not in presence here.
The tone of that voice, felt as if it had sustained a terrible loss of ambition, it could not be helped.
After all, the person concerned was not someone to be enthusiastic about.
He was not, that great of a man. ーーWhilst wishing for that to not happen, his fingers as if pulling a rope, he started to draw the 『Book of the Dead』 out.
And, what will follow will certainly be the finishing blow, harbouring such feelingsーー,
???: “ーーYeah, I get it.”
A white, white world.
Upon noticing, Subaru was not in the library, nor a shapeless existence overlapping with memories, but had been sent a place which he recognised, which was not here.
???: “I get it, Natsuki Subaru.”
???: “After all, because you are me, you know.”
Standing still within the white world, sanpaku eyes he was well acquainted with, had been awaiting Subaru.