Part 127: Chapter 5 Deadly Life, Part 5
: Hurry up and check the locker. That's what we're here for, after all.
: Alright, alright...
There are wooden lockers here... They use woodblock keys, just like at those super traditional public bathhouses. It looks like the key we found in Kyokko's room really does go to one of these lockers...
: Makoto, do you see the locker farthest to the right?
: That's the only one that doesn't have a key in it at the moment. You understand what that means, right?
: I should probably use the key we found on that locker, right?
: Well? Just try it!
I took out the woodblock key and inserted it into the locker's metal lock, and...
The locker eagerly accepted the key, and it opened.
There are...arrows in here. It looks like...ten arrows in total.
: They look like they're made of titanium, which means they're quite strong despite how thin they are. Of course, without a bow they're nothing but strong little sticks.
Oh, there's something else inside the locker... It's a wadded up ball of duct tape. I wonder what this was used for...
: Is that...a bloodstain?
: If it is, that means it must surely be related to the case.
This duct tape is related to the case somehow...? But...how could it possibly be involved?
I think that's all the locker has to offer for now...
: Is something wrong?
: It's very odd, don't you think? The locker was hiding items that were clearly related to the case. But how did the key to the locker wind up in the victim's room...?
: Forget it. Come on. We need to continue on to the next location.
: Huh? What next location?
: There's still something we need to look into. We need to do more research on Fenrir.
: Fenrir...? You mean the mercenary group that Mukuro was a part of? But...how are we supposed to find out about that?
: Isn't it obvious? Where in this school would you go to do research on something?
: Are you talking about...the archive? That's right... The archive has all kinds of info that the general public doesn't have access to.
: We only have so much time before the trial begins. Let's hurry.
: I believe there was a file related to Fenrir somewhere over here...
Byakuya seemed to know the archive like the back of his hand, and went straight to a shelf in the back.
: Ah, here we go.
He quickly returned with a file in hand.
: Take a look at this.
: Umm...I have no idea what it says. What language is this?
: How did you make it all the way to high school without learning a single word of French?
: Uh...I'm pretty sure *most* high schoolers can't speak French...
: Well, whatever. I'll read it for you, but I expect you to repay your debt a hundred times over.
A hundred times...? Isn't that kind of extreme?
: "Fenrir is an elite fighting unit base out of the Middle East. Unlike military contractors, they are a fierce group of soldiers who engage in direct combat. They claim that a single member is equivalent to an entire company of regular soldiers. Just like Fenrir, the Wolf of Ragnarok, their mere presence is enough to strike fear into any enemy. They have been involved in countless military battles and operations, most of which are highly classified.
: "However, some time ago, they completely ceased all activity. At present, their continued existence cannot be confirmed. There are unconfirmed reports that the key members of the group were all neutralized. Rumors indicate they were killed to keep them from revealing the many state secrets they'd acquired. Some, however, believe there was mounting internal tension within the group, and they simply imploded."
: ...What is it?
: This all just sounds like some kind of...alternate reality.
: Well, it isn't. This is *our* reality, the *only* reality. These people are part of our world. Their battlefields aren't much different from our lives here. An unpredictable, unimaginable world...
: That's what makes it all so exciting.
"Exciting" definitely isn't the word I would use...
: So, did anything jump out at you? This may be your last opportunity to learn about Fenrir.
Now that you mention it...
: The report said something about where the name Fenrir comes from, right...?
: That's right. It said Fenrir is...the Wolf of Ragnarok. Speaking of which, would you like to know something interesting related to that? To show that they're a member of the team, each soldier that joins the squad...would get a tattoo representing Fenrir somewhere on their body.
They got a tattoo...of Fenrir...? Could that mean...!?
*Ding dong, bing bong*
: Time is utterly silent, and yet it constantly assaults us--organisms, the earth, natural phenomena... It damages us little by little, until the end. You should really think about that. Anyway! It's time to begin the class trial! So, please meet up in the usual spot! Puhuhu... See ya later!
: Then the time has come...
: All we can do now is try to uncover the truth during the class trial...
: It would seem that way. Let's go.
: Whoa, Byakuya and Makoto showed up together!
: Where the heck have you two been!? You just disappeared without a word!
: We were investigating, of course. How could you not figure that out by this point?
: M-Makoto's ranked high enough for you guys to go off t-together...just the two of y-you...?
: What, are you jealous?
: Or...are you making up some kind of creepy fantasy for yourself?
: Stop talking and brace yourselves. He'll be here any second.
Any second... He could show up at any time... When I imagined what was about to happen, I immediately tensed up and prepared myself. But...
We stood there for five full minutes, waiting for something weird to happen. And then five minutes became ten...
: What's going on here? Why hasn't Monokuma shown up yet?
: Maybe he died again...?
: What should we do? Should we keep waiting here, or...?
: Or what!?
: Nyohoho! Did I scare you?
: I demand an explanation! Why did you waste my time and make me wait like that!?
: What? I made you wait? You've got it all backwards. *You're* the ones making *me* wait!
: I'm waiting for everyone to arrive! We can't start till everyone's here, now can we?
: What are you t-talking about...? Everyone *is* here. We've all been w-waiting for *you*.
: Puhuhu... Sorry, but you're wrong.
: But I've been waiting ten minutes now, so it's okay if I punish the one making us all wait, right? If we all agree it's a violation, I'll arrange a punishment right now--!
♪ Music cuts out. ♪
???: If it's me you're waiting for...I'm here.
When we heard that voice, we all spun around to look.
: I'm here, and no rule's been broken.
: Kyoko!? You're still alive!?
: N-No...! That's a gh-gh-gh-ghost!
: Stop t-talking...
: If you wanna fight, do it at the class trial! You need to save some of the fun for later, right?
: But is it okay that there's no particular penalty for being late?
: I made it here just fine. What school regulation did I violate? Am I wrong?
: You're so selfish... So spoiled! You're right. There's no penalty, officially. But I bet you'll be sorry later...
: No, I'll make *sure* you're sorry later...!
: Anyway, hustle your butts onto the elevator! I'll be just one step ahead of ya! *leaves*
When Monokuma was gone, we all rushed up to Kyoko.
: So you really didn't die!?
: Of course I didn't die...
: Thank God! I'm so glad you're okay!
: Perhaps, but that's not necessarily a good thing for us.
: He's right! Now we've gotta deal with a gh-gh-ghost!
: I told you, stop t-talking...!
: Come on, let's just go. Whatever we need to discuss, we can do it during the trial. *leaves*
Without ever looking directly at Kyoko, Byakuya stepped into the elevator.
: Master! W-Wait for meee...!
: Good call. Who knows what might happen to us if we take too long...?
: I'll be happy when this trial is all over...
One after another, everyone piled into the elevator. But I... I couldn't help myself. I had to talk to Kyoko before the trial started.
: Listen, before we get started, I have to ask you...
: Where have you been this whole time? You used that key of yours to go somewhere, didn't you? So...
: I went to investigate the 2nd floor of the dorms.
: The...2nd floor?
: There aren't any monitors or cameras there, so I was able to avoid Monokuma completely. Of course, I also missed his announcement because of that.
: I had no idea a body had been discovered.
: Then...when did you find out?
: Just now. I finished my search and came back down, just in time to hear the class trial announcement. I took some time to go over the crime scene first. I can't go to a trial completely uninformed, can I?
: So that's why you were late...
: I'm sorry I kept you all waiting.
: But...if you were on the 2nd floor of the dorms...then that's what the key you found goes to?
: Actually, to be precise...not quite.
: I used Monokuma's secret tool, which can open any lock in the school.
: Hey! What are you two doing!? Hurry up, before we get in trouble with Monokuma!
: We can go over all the details after we get through the trial, okay Makoto? Right now I just want to focus on surviving our current situation.
: Because this is probably the single most crucial moment so far for me.
For...her? That's a strange way to put it... The class trial is important for everyone, right? So why would she say it's a crucial moment for *her*?
: Well, if that's all...
Seemingly unconcerned, Kyoko made her way to the elevator. I'm just...overthinking what she said, right...?
Being the last one left, I stepped into the elevator.
♪ No Music. ♪
And the doors slid shut...
This time, the clunking was loud enough to hurt my ears, and the dread began to consume me once again... I can't imagine ever getting used to the mental pressure that comes with preparing for an execution. In that dusky darkness, nobody said a word. We just stood there, silent and still.
After an immeasurable period of time, the doors opened without warning... A dazzling light penetrated every depth of my eyes. But it wasn't the illuminating light of hope...
It was the blinding light of despair.
: Ahh, I've been waiting for this! I feel like it's been forever since we got together like this... The time for pointless jokes and jabs has passed.
: Let's get on with the show!
And so, the curtain opened for the fifth time...
A deadly judgment... A deadly deception... A deadly betrayal.
A deadly riddle, a deadly defense, and deadly faith...
A deadly...class trial...!
: Welcome to the 5th class trial. With everyone alive, who is dead? Who's even the killer? Did we do it without realizing? This one's gonna get good.
: The ticker along the bottom reads:
"Memories float back, Kyoko is gone, and a mysterious masked body appears--the threads holding them all together begin to spin and twine into one..."
: We picked up one new skill this chapter. Let's see what it does.
Crystal Prediction: Decreases an argument to three statements or less. Effective during the Nonstop Debate, and the Bullet Time Battle Final Strike. Costs 5 SP.
-This skill came from Hiro. By now in the trial we typically have 5 bullets to choose from during any given debate. This skill eliminates false possibilities, leaving only three behind. It's pretty handy on harder difficulties but I don't have much reason to use it here, especially when it needs that much SP to use. I'm not willing to give up anything else for it.
: We only got 1 more SP this chapter and unfortunately that isn't enough to give us enough SP to equip anything else. I thought about unequipping something and trading for another, but in the end I decided to stick with what I took to Chapter 4's trial: Algorithm, Upshift, Cool and Composed, Robot Jock, Melodious Voice and Handiwork. This puts me at 15/17 SP used up. If I had 2 more SP I would've equipped Breathing Technique to make my Focus Gauge recharge faster as a "just-in-case" measure.
: Lastly, let's go over our Truth Bullets.
: They had also been struck in the head with an object about as thick as a metal pipe. The body was covered with other wounds, but these were at least several days old.
: ...wet, while the bottom half remained dry.
: It's hard to imagine these two events are unrelated...
: ...would have gotten wet.
: ...together they head to the headmaster's room.
: 9 a.m.: Toko is told to find the pickaxe in the garden, where she discovers the body.
: ...the masked assailant was holding when they attacked Makoto.
: ...Yasuhiro, Toko, and Aoi were in the gym the entire night, and none of them were alone at any point.
: ...but the blood was still wet. It was noted, however, that there was no blood on the ground around the body.
: ...years later
: Apparently, every member of Fenrir gets a tattoo somewhere on their body to represent their membership in the group.
: ...is to hide something she doesn't want anyone to see.
: And with that, join me next time for Trial 5.