The Let's Play Archive

Dangan Ronpa

by orenronen

Part 16: Super High-school Level Update #14

CHAPTER 01 - LIVES CUT / Abnormal Days part

When I opened my eyes, I saw a wide ceiling.
Somehow, it felt live I’ve seen this ceiling before.
When I tried moving my body, faces appeared before me.
Somehow, it felt like I knew those faces...


Ah! He finally woke up! Are you okay?

This is not the time for sleeping... Just get up already.

...Naegi-chi, you lost your consciousness, ‘right? We had to carry you over here.

Be that as it may, I do not find fault with you. With all that had happened.
All that... happened...?


Naegi... are you really okay...?
...It wasn’t a dream?
T...that thing...
...wasn’t... a dream...?

It’s real.
Sayaka Maizono is... dead.

A thick wave of despair swelled up inside my body, and then exploded all at once.
I leaped up from the floor, and started running.

Where do you think you’re going...?
Isn’t it obvious?! I have to!!... have to!!... have to!!... Maizono-san!!

We already checked it thoroughly. Sayaka Maizono is undeniably dead.
I won’t believe it!! I’m going!!

Just do as you’re told and stay still!! If you run away, who knows what will happen!
What’s the sense in staying here!? Speaking of which --
Why are we even all here in the gym at a time like this?!
Your classmate... Maizono-san...

“Died”. The moment the word left my own mouth I finally managed to get a hold on reality...

Maizono-san... died...

It wasn’t our own idea to be here in the gymnasium.
Then... why...?

Why do you think? It was Monobear. He told us to gather here...

Of course, we didn’t want to come here...
This is no time for assemblies, right after that horrible thing that happened to Maizono-kun...

I suggested to everyone that we should do as he tells us.
We’re prisoners, aren’t we? Resisting him thoughtlessly is not the best course of action...
We don’t want to increase the number of victims here.
Why... should we listen to anything he has to say...?
Even though... even though it’s obvious it was him who killed Maizono-san...!

I wouldn’t do such a thing! If you can believe anything, believe that!

H...he’s here...

As long as you don’t break the school rules, I will not lay a hand on you.
Going against the school’s spirit like that is just not my style!
Even back at the zoo, they couldn’t shut me up about the importance of rules!!

So... who killed Maizono-san...?

Oh, I’m sure you all know!
Sayaka Maizono’s killer is someone among yourselves!

Hearing those words, we became completely silent.
Maizono-san’s killer is... one of us...?

I... can’t believe it...

Huh? What’s wrong? You look as if a pigeon ate your Gatling gun.
Isn’t it just like I told you all from the very beginning?

It’s very simple. In order to graduate this school, someone in your group killed Maizono-san!
Aren’t those our rules? It’s not such a bad thing!

You’re... lying, aren’t you?
Of course he’s lying!! Who else could’ve killed her except for him!!

Nope. The killer is one of you.
As I’m sure the person in question knows very well.

I instinctively looked around at everyone’s faces.
And everyone else did the same...

The room overflowed with faces full of doubt mixed with fear and confusion.

Is it... really true...?

Someone here... someone here is a killer...!

Honestly... So there really is someone among us who can do such an unbelievable thing...

Hey, wait...! Don’t buy so easily into everything he says...!

...Shut up.
There is something I want to confirm with this stuffed toy first.

If one of us really is the killer, will that person now graduate the school...?

Don’t act dumb. That’s what the rules say, don’t they? Someone who kills can graduate...

Upupu... Upopopopopo.....


...What’s with the explosive laugh?

Upupu... I’m laughing because, you see...

Naive! You’re all too naive!
You think it’s so easy to graduate? That all you have to do is kill someone?

That’s extremely naive! Violently naive! Almightily naive!!
I mean, the main event is just now starting!!
Main event...?

Well, then. Let me explain the supplementary rules regarding “graduation”!!
The fact that “someone who kills another can graduate the school” remains unchanged, but...
There is one more clause to that rule that must be checked, right?

You’re talking about the second part of rule 6, aren’t you?

“However, they must not let any other student know they are the culprit”... that what you’re talking about?

Exactly. It’s no good just killing someone. You must hide what you’ve from everyone else!
And so, the system to judge whether that was accomplished or not... a “school trial” session we will enact a short time after a killing occurs!

School... trial...?

This “school trial” will commence a few hours after murder takes place!
It will be a battle between the “culprit” who committed murder...
And the “innocents” - the rest of you students!!

The original terminology here is "kuro" (literally, "black") vs. "shiro" (lit, "white"). Kuro is a term often used in works like this to designate the hidden criminal or the unknown mastermind. I went with the more orthodox "culprit" vs. "innocents" for the translation.

During trial, you will get a chance to debate “who among us is the hidden killer” among yourselves.
The result will be decided by vote, held at the end of the trial session.
And then, if the answer you reach is the correct one...
The culprit who disrupted public order will be “punished”, and the rest can go on living our school’s communal lifestyle.
On the other hand, if the wrong person is voted for as the culprit...
The real culprit who committed the crime stays alive, but all the innocents will be “punished”.
If that happens, that will also be the end of our communal lifestyle, of course!
Those are the rules of the “school trial”!!

Um, by the way... What’s this “punishment” you keep talking about...?

Oh...? If I may speak bluntly...

I’m talking about execution, of course!


What do you mean... by execution...?

Execution means execution. Eh-kse-kyu-shon.
Zap-zap in the electric chair! Choke-choke from poison gas! Maybe I’ll tear your body up in a hurricane storm!

So what you’re saying...
If we can finger the culprit, they alone are killed... but if we make the wrong choice...
We will all be executed?

You’re a clever chimpanzee, aren’t you? It’s a good trick to know, how to subtly push the blame on someone else.
To summarize, our court is set just like the outside world’s jury system.
It is up to you to decide who is the culprit.

But judging people is a duty not to be taken lightly. Your very lives depend on it!
I have taken the liberty to add everything I just said to the list of school rules. Please check them when you have time!

System message posted:

The list of school rules have been updated. They can be checked from the ID Menu screen.

H...hey, wait just a minute!!
What you’re saying... it’s all so demented!!


What’s up with this... “school trial” thing?!
I don’t wanna take part in anything like that...!


Isn’t it obvious...!
Why do I have to try to figure out who the culprit is? Isn’t that all messed up?

So what are you saying? You’re not going to cooperate? If you don’t, I will have to penalize you!

Huh? Penalize...?

Maybe I’ll... lock you up in a dark scary cell...
Just shut the fuck up!! I don’t care what you say, I’ll never go on with something like this!
It’s your body. Do as you please!

Isn’t it you who always do as you please?!! Telling us to kill each other! I don’t want anything to do with it!!

Seeing such overwhelming determination... it’s truly exciting! Nevertheless...

I will not bend the rules for your sake. I’m a bear of high principles, you know.
If you try to sway me...

I’ll get you first!!

As he was saying those words, Monobear came charging at Enoshima-san.

There, are you satisfied now?
I should ask you the same thing.
Violence against the headmaster is forbidden. It’s against the school rules...
I have no choice but invoking my summoning magic! Save me! Gungnir the Spear!!

Isn’t.... that....... strange.....?
Why...... was.... I........?

Enoshima-san opened her eyes wide one last time...
And then... didn’t move anymore.


That’s..........’re kidding, right?


I take my promises very seriously.
I didn’t think I would have to produce a dead body myself, but...

I guess you needed someone to serve as a lesson after all. Oh! The power of promises!!
I hope you all understand now?

I am a very serious bear.
Whoever disobeys me gets thrown into the bee nest, a bomb pushed down their throat, buried alive, dissolved in acid... etc etc.
If you don’t want to end up that way... You must follow the school rules to the letter!!

Enoshima’s body, pierced by several long spears...
A large amount of flowing from of it...

That was the first time I ever saw the moment of someone’s death.
The scene before my eyes was perfectly clear. Enoshima-san, who just a few minutes ago was our classmate...

...was dead. Killed. Breathed her last breath.

It was as simple as that.
That’s... what a human being’s death is like.

Don’t act so surprised.
It’s only death. Simple death.
Everyone knows one day mankind will fall into ruin...
It’s a fact of nature that the world will end one day.

We aren’t living in a shonen manga story. There is no such thing as dying without dying.

This is reality!!

Shonen Manga, as I'm sure most of you know, are Japanese comics aimed at boys in their early teens. Many are adventure stories, and just like in American superhero comic books (or daytime soap operas, for that matter), death is rarely permanent.

...Why did you kill her? Didn’t you say you were going to lock her in a cell?

I changed my mind.

You were grasping for a chance to kill someone from the very beginning, didn’t you?

Grasping...? I think you’ve made a grave mistake...
I’m a bear! I don’t even have opposable thumbs!

Well, let’s leave that conversation aside for now...
Isn’t it time you start your investigation into who the culprit is?

This is a file I’ve written, containing details about the body. It’s name is...
...The Monobear File!!
It didn’t escape me that I’m dealing with a bunch of amateurs here and there’s a limit to what you can learn from examining the body...
So instead, I gathered up technical details like the circumstances and cause of death for you. Isn’t that handy?!

Aren’t you dying to know how I know the cause of death?

I saw the whole thing happen through the surveillance cameras! I’m a first-hand witness!!

So, you know who did it? Who the culprit who killed Sayaka Maizono is...?

Of course I do!!
If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be a very good fit to hand down justice as our school trial’s judge, would I?

That’s right, a judge hands down justice. I’m a little relieved, hearing that from you...

Anyways, good luck with your investigation!
It’s not like you have any choice!
Well then, I’ll see you in a bit at the school trial!

And with that, Monobear disappeared.
Leaving us in a state of confusion...

...and with Enoshima-san’s lifeless body.

For a short while no one could even speak.
Maizono-san and Enoshima-san’s deaths were, of course, a shock to all of us...
But it wasn’t just that.

Someone in our group was a killer. That was reality.

In addition, if we don’t find out who that killer is, we will all be executed...
Everyone looked suspiciously around them.
It was the worst possible situation to be in.

But... even in this situation that defies normal reactions...
That girl... didn’t lose her cool composure.

This is not the time to relax.
...That said, I don’t think blindly distrusting everyone is the right choice.
It’s exactly the same as blindly trusting everyone. It only leads to unwanted results.


We need to cooperate.
Who you trust and who you don’t... is up for each and everyone to decide for themselves, of course.

She’s right. We can’t just waste time staying here staring at a corpse.

T...that’s disrespectful...!

I warned her several times. Anyone who can’t adapt will die...
Not knowing how to adapt. Resisting change. That’s the same as death.

She was just reaping what she sowed...

Wait a second, that’s too cruel! Take it back, right now!

Right now we should put our priorities on finding who the culprit is.
If we don’t, we could all find our deaths here.

...she’s right. Let’s start looking for our culprit immediately.

One way or the other, we have no escape route. We have no choice but to proceed.

No choice...
We really... have no choice...

What’s with this execution business...? He thinks he can just kill us...!
Shit... We’ll show him...!

We have no choice...

Everyone whispered those words to themselves... if to rouse their fighting spirit...

That’s right... we have no choice...
Even if we don’t want to, we have no choice...
If that’s the only way to stay alive, we have no choice...!

And in addition, I must know...
Why was... Maizono-san killed...
Why did... she had to die...

The truth may be scary, and yet I must know.

If I don’t... then I can’t accept Maizono-san’s death...

And that’s why...
I have no choice...!