Part 99: 12/11/11-12/18/1112/11/11
Things are getting worse and worse in town.
There's still some normal people around, but not many.
Out-of-towner: "Being led around by the vox populi is pitiful," she said… And then it hit me like a speeding freight train.
I'm still worried about everyone saying the fog is poisonous, but… I'll believe her.
Shopping Woman: Is it poison or isn't it? It doesn't even matter!
Everybody dies eventually, right? The only difference is that some people die earlier than others…
Loud Old Man: Wh-What are you babbling about!? This fog is strange, true, but…
I've decided that this whole thing is Junes' fault! If we get that store closed down, everything will be fixed!
Shopping Woman: I-Is that… true?
And of course there's the ever-present gas masks.
Gas-Masked Man: The fog is dangerous, so I don't want to go outside… But if I stay at home, all I do is watch TV.
It looks like everything they've been saying is true. It's a frightening concept, isn't it…?
Well, I've got my gas mask, so I'll be fine. At least, that's what the TV says.
Then I headed down to the river to talk with Hisano.
…I'm not really Death.
I did wish that he would die…
And so, he died for me. …That's what I wanted to think.
I thought maybe that would be proof that he still loved me…
I didn't want to accept that he had died all by himself, not remembering me, leaving me behind…
I think now I can start to understand where she's coming from.
Haha… Do you have someone who you hold dear yourself?
> Hisano smiles gently.
But the truth is… I don't have any special powers like that. I'm not Death; just another boring human being.
Waiting for a miracle that never came…
Before I knew it, I was wishing death on the one person I loved most in the world. I was lonely, forgotten…
And… Loving, being loved… All that is what goes into making us human.
Even if he did forget me in the end… The lives we spent together were proof of our dedication to each other.
His love for me was never a lie.
All those letters are proof…
I just didn't get it…
Haha… But it's too late now, isn't it?
It's never too late.
Hmm… Perhaps you're right. I think I'll try living as the Hisano he loved, once more…
> Hisano smiles gently.
> The spark has returned to Hisano's eyes…
> It seems you were able to give Hisano some support…
You can always change.
The man I loved is gone…
I can't ignore that fact any longer. I need to face the truth head-on.
> You left Hisano and went home.
I'm not sure when we're going back in, I feel like I've still got some things to do.
Stepped in a bit of a family dispute today.
Yuuta: …I don't wanna go home yet! I'm playing with Mister!
But doesn't that bother him?
Okay… fine. I'm going home.
> Yuuta suddenly turned silent.
> You decided to play with Yuuta for a bit and then walk him home.
> On the way home, on the Samegawa flood plain…
> Eri is sitting over there…
Yuuta: …Is she mad at me?
She's not angry.
She hates me.
But she has to take care of me… I feel sorry for her.
She doesn't hate you.
They're both convinced the other must hate them, but I don't think either of them actually does.
…Maybe I should have you walk him all the way home. Haha…
He looks so happy when he's at day care.
Today he yelled, "I don't wanna go home!" Well, obviously not. Haha…
Even if he goes home, it's just the two of us. He'll forget his father's face at this rate.
> The two are unknowingly pitying each other…
> But it seems both are distancing themselves from the other.
…I'm glad he's going to the day care center.
He looks like he's having a good time, and I have time to myself, too.
He seems happy even after he comes home, especially on the days you're there.
…Of course, since we don't talk, I've never actually heard him say so.
Please take care of him.
> You sense Eri's gratitude…
> You feel that your relationship with Eri has grown deeper…
It's really strange.
Let's go home, Yuu-kun. Mister Souji has to go home, too.
> They awkwardly went home together.
> You decided to go home as well.
Some people aren't so bothered by the fog.
Dark-Haired Girl: I'm getting kinda used to this thick fog now. I'm not worried about not being able to see anymore.
I felt so relieved once I realized that only those right next to me can even see me.
I used to freak out, thinking that a teacher would see me in town and they'd stop and yell at me…
But thanks to this fog, none of my teachers would know me even if I was five feet away.
Cold Student: You're right. I feel kinda relieved because of the fog too.
Some people get ill from it, but I'm all right so far.
Plus, I'm kinda excited that it might be the end of the world; we might actually get to see it!
Dark-Haired Girl: Ahahaha, I know! What's gonna happen at the end of the world? I wonder…
It's like that variety show that plays at midnight. Nobody knows what's gonna happen.
Recently, the shows have just been kind of weird, but at least it's entertaining.
It's like finding random shows that don't show up on the programming guide…
I'm still finding excuses to put off finishing this once and for all. I wonder why that is?
We're all getting anxious about what Adachi said.
We've been running into each other quite a lot, haven't we?
Do you remember… what Adachi said?
Inaba will disappear into the fog by the end of the year…
Nobody has been kidnapped, but we still need to be conscious of our time limit now.
It's important to be ready for what lies ahead, but we should hurry.
If Adachi was telling the truth, then the lives of all mankind are at stake!
This is no longer at the level of any other murder investigation…
We have to make sure we stop him, no matter what!
It's chaos at school recently.
Female Student: Hey, did you hear? The fog made someone faint…
Oh yeah. I heard it was someone from 3-3…
But we don't know what really caused it, right? No point in panicking.
I'd worry more about getting a gas mask! If you won't, you could be next!
Hey! Be quiet, everyone!
Class is still in session. No talking!
> The uproar continues…
God I am seriously wishing Morooka was here, he wouldn't be taking this shit. Anyway, Ai wanted to go to Okina and I can't say I didn't want an excuse to leave Inaba for a bit. But things never seem to go as planned.
Smirking Senior: Hey, Ai-chan. Haven't heard from you in a while. What's up with that?
Smirking Senior: What, you gonna play hard to get now? I see how it is!
You think I didn't hear about your new arm candy? That transfer student, Souji, right?
Are you seriously dating that loser?
…We're not dating.
And don't talk about him like-
Smirking Senior: Coulda fooled me! Heh, not that I'm worried or anything…
I mean, come on, me versus him? Not even a contest! I could show you stuff you've never even dreamed of, babe.
Stop it. Geez… There's nothing going on between you and me. Never has been.
Twitching Senior: Hey, listen. I can only take so much of your mouth. Come on. Now.
Forget it. I'm not going anywhere with you.
Twitching Senior: Hey… Hey! What the hell!? You had me wrapped around your little finger and now you're gonna act like this!?
You want me to leave a mark on that precious face of yours? I'll call up some friends! It'll be a party!
I don't care about your stupid threats. Why don't you just do it already?
> Things don't look good… You feel Ai is in danger.
God I'm the dumbest person in the world some days.
> You decided to help her!
Twitching Senior: What, are you trying to be her knight in shining armor? Don't you know you're getting played, dumbass?
I'm officially pissed off now, you little shit!
I'm sure as hell not going to back down from some asshole at school after all that's happened to me, but it turned out not to matter.
> Ai was struck…
Twitching Senior: Y-You got what you deserve, bitch!
Uh… Sorry, was that unnecessary?
Are you all right?
I'll be fine as soon as I get some ice on it…
> Ai smiles bravely…
D-Don't worry about it. I just thought… Maybe I could do something to help you, for once.
Well, I guess I didn't really think that far ahead. It was kinda like a reflex…
I wonder if my face is gonna get all swollen…
> Ai is laughing, despite her swollen cheek…
> You feel your relationship with Ai has gotten stronger…
Still, we decided not to head down to Okina after all that excitement.
Let's go somewhere close by. I don't want anyone to notice…
Funny, even with a face like this, I still want to be with you…
> You talked with Ai at school, and parted ways after walking her home…
I'm still not totally sure why I'm dragging my feet on this. I know we need to go, but it just doesn't feel right yet.
More and more people are seeing Inaba destroyed on the Midnight Channel.
Bespectacled Student: I saw it… On the Midnight Channel…
Countless black creatures crawl out of the fog and infest the town…
The town gets overrun by them and… The people who inhaled the fog turned into them too!
And the last person that appeared… looked just like me…
What should I do? I don't feel good…
Guy With a Backpack: People turning into monsters…?
That sounds awesome!
It's like some kind of anime! I wonder how it feels to turn into a monster!
Bespectacled Student: Huh, how it feels?
Well, I guess… If everyone was turned into monsters, that'd be okay.
If everyone's becoming a creature, why should I worry about becoming one!?
Ahaha, it'll be just like we're evolving into another species!
Since we'd not gotten to yesterday, Ai and I went out to Okina. Then I went out to tutor Shu.
I need to make this sentence have the same meaning as the one in the example here…
Umm… "He is good at…"
> You explained the sentence to him in an easily-understood manner.
People who grow up speaking a different language end up thinking in their native tongues, right?
> Shu shrugs.
There's going to be a fair commemorating the anniversary of my school's founding.
So there was a discussion about what our class was going to do, and all the girls were being noisy…
Were they a pain in the ass?
A major one.
…They're all stupid.
I guess I shouldn't expect him to 'get' girls.
You've never had to be around them.
> Shu looks disgusted…
…School's like that all day, and when I get home, Mom is all over me.
"You're so excellent." "You can be number one."
"Mom's so proud of you." "You're my pride and joy."
> Shu looks worried.
Um… You only come here because you're being paid to, right?
I've actually started to like the kid, honestly.
Well… I don't need to know why you keep coming back.
> Shu looks happy, despite what he just said.
Up until now, all I ever did was go back and forth from home to school…
I look forward to when you come to tutor me.
> It seems that Shu is opening up to you…
> You feel that your relationship with Shu has deepened.
But I'm still not sure what all this hesitation on my part is about. We could have taken out Adachi days ago, but instead I've been wasting time. It's just… it feels important somehow.
…Oh, there's something I still don't really understand. Can you tutor me for a little while longer?
> You finished your tutoring job and went home.
My life is shit.
So, this is finally going to be the last battle! Finally, huh?
I've been thinking about when I made the decision to come here.
*giggle * I came here thinking that I could find myself in the peace and quiet of a little country town.
But, I have no regrets.
I'm glad I met you.
We can't lose to that Adachi!
Let's beat him and bring him to justice! I'll do my best to help you until the very end!
Let's win, and give Nanako-chan something to smile about!
I mean really shit.
Female Student: Did you already buy a gas mask? How much was it?
Male Student: I dunno. My parents bought it for me. Whatever, I'm safe now.
Check it out, I heard that if you catch colds easily, then you've got a higher chance of getting sick from the fog.
Female Student: Seriously!? Oh my god… I'm totally like that…
Mr. Kondo: Shut uuuuup! No talking! You're still in class!
This city is known to get covered in fog every 50 years. Don't worrrrrrry about it!
That's what the TV said, anyway… So let's get down to business, can we?
> The uproar continues…
I guess I should explain why my life is shit? Whatever. Ai called me up to the roof.
You're a really weird guy, you know that!?
What's a guy like you doing hanging out with a girl like me!?
I mean, I'm a good looking girl, yet you show absolutely no interest in dating me!
But… you're so nice to me.
What was I supposed to do!?
It's only natural that I'd fall in love!
> It seems Ai has revealed her feelings for you…
> …However, you are already in a relationship with another girl…
> What will you do…?
So yeah I think I've finally figured out this bullshit. They're making me gain power from the agony of others. Fuckers.
Yeah, I know…
Thank you… for being brave enough to tell me without dancing around it.
Remember when I asked you if we should go out, and you said, "Are you sure about that?"
Well, I thought that was your way of letting me down easy, so I figured…
…But I just had to tell you my feelings, no matter what.
You know… You saved me.
It was only you, Souji.
You're the only one who didn't pay attention to the rumors flying around about me… You saw me as I am.
Here… Take this.
> Obtained Compact.
I've carried that thing around ever since I decided to change who I was.
I could check myself whenever I wanted, to make sure I was still pretty all the time…
But now… I don't need it.
From now on, people like you will be my mirror.
I'll look for my reflection in you, so that I'll never forget who I am. I won't be able to lie to myself anymore…
Thank you. Your eyes taught me how to do that.
> You feel a deep bond has formed between you and Ai…
It's funny because Ai's a lot more beautiful inside even than out.
But some things just aren't to be.
I knew this was coming, but I guess I couldn't really be ready for how much it would hurt. …I'm being selfish, though.
Looking at you is… kinda difficult right now, so… um… I'll be fine here alone…
> You left Ai and walked softly home…
Hearing it again, now I'm sure I know why I feel all wrong about finishing this now. That voice says these links are eyes to see the truth, or something like that. If that's the case, they might just be the edge we need to bring down Adachi for good. And if that's the case, maybe some day I'll forgive myself for how much of a bastard they're making me be.
Everyone's just going crazy I think.
Sporty Student: This fog is so thick. I guess the club won't be able to meet today, either.
Before I used to think that school without clubs was worthless… But I'm getting used to life without any clubs.
I'm actually kind of relieved. It's one less thing for me to worry about.
Please don't leave, fog! Stick around for a while!
Younger Student: I totally agree with you, Senpai!
The fog is so thick that I don't have to worry about how people react to what I say.
If I can't see them, then I can just assume their reaction was whatever I wanted! So I can say anything I want!
Sporty Student: Yeah, you're right. If you don't see other people, you kinda stop caring about them, right?
Same goes for me; I used to worry about others so much before, but now… Psh, I just look out for number one.
I've never felt this way before, but it's not bad at all.
But even if everyone else is losing it, my resolve to finish this is unshaken.
Mr. Hosoi: Besides, sometimes it's nice when visibility is horrible… You don't have to make eye contact with anyone.
You know, I think I'm starting to like foggy weather.
Oh yeah. We should get on with the lecture. Let's pick up from where we left off last time on page 256.
Take a look at the 13th line. You'll see the word "metacarpals." What do you think the prefix, "meta," means?
…Metacarpals? Sounds like a snack's name. What does "meta" mean, anyway?
God I almost told her it had to do with meat, but it means beyond.
Mr. Hosoi: You're right, Souji-chan! But you should ask me if you're confused, Sato-chan…
"Meta" means to proceed something, much like the word "post." It's Greek, and it means "after," or "beyond."
The metacarpals are the bones in the palm of your hand that come after the carpals.
Hm, I get it…
You're a genius, Souji-kun! You should become a teacher!
I've got just one loose end to tie up before we do this.
I'm ready now.
I've decided to move.
My children have offered me a place with them.
At first, I turned them down because I didn't want to leave the place I was born in, but…
They kept insisting?
Oh, no. If I stay here, I'll only think about my husband and the time I spent with him.
If I stay here and mope around, I'm sure he'll feel bad up in Heaven.
> Hisano smiles gently.
Will you accept this?
> You obtained Old Fountain Pen.
I saved up my money to buy this a long time ago. I used it to write my husband, before we were married.
I'd be delighted if someone… if you would have it.
I'd feel that… our story hasn't truly ended…
I'll treasure it.
I believe… that the past, when we exchanged letters, is connected to the present day.
I'm sure I don't have very long left in this world, but that's not the case for you.
You're carrying on my story now. I think I can keep smiling, to the end.
I think… I've had a good life.
> Hisano's smile is full of affection.
> It seems you were able to give Hisano some support…
I've got more reason to hesitate now.
I've got people I need to protect.
…Do you have someone you love?
Haha, is that so…?
Live a long and full life. That is the greatest thing you can do for your beloved.
> You spent a while talking about different things with Hisano…
> You said goodbye to Hisano and headed back home…
We're going in tomorrow. Either we'll bring down Adachi and save Inaba, or die in the attempt…
Next Time on Persona 4: The Master of the Hollow Forest