Part 20: Chapter 1 Deadly Life, Part 5
: Time to check the dining hall for clues.
: Hina... Are you investigating the dining hall?
: Oh, no. I'm just taking a break. Actually, I've been taking a break since we started. This is all a first for me, ya know? I don't have the first clue what I should be doing.
: I know what you mean...
: And I dunno why, but being in the dining hall helps keep me calm. So I know I shouldn't, but I've just been kinda...hanging around here. To tell the truth...I was doing the same thing last night, when Sayaka was killed.
: Let's check out what's back here.
: We haven't been in the kitchen yet, but aside from various fruits and meats, there's not much to check, except for one big thing.
There are all kinds of kitchen knives here, big to small. But it looks like one of them is missing. Was it missing from the very beginning, or...? I'd better see if anyone here knows more about it.
: Back in the dining hall...
: Hey, so...did you notice that one of the kitchen knives is missing from the dining hall?
: Yeah, weird huh? I thought it was kinda strange, a knife just suddenly disappearing like that.
: Oh, so it wasn't missing from the beginning?
: Nope. Last I remember, they were all lined up in a nice, neat row.
: So when did you notice one of them had disappeared?
: Well, I went to go get some tea from the kitchen last night, and all the knives were still there. But when I finished my tea and went back into the kitchen to wash my glass, one of the knives was gone.
: So you're saying the knife disappeared while you were drinking your tea in the dining hall?
In other words, you were right there in the dining hall when someone came and took it. Then you should be able to say for sure. You can tell everyone I didn't come to the dining hall last night. Which proves I didn't take it!
: Hey, by the way... Did you really kill Sayaka?
: Wh-What!? Of course not! I would never!
: Hina... do you really think I murdered her?
: Well... she was killed in your room, right? So I mean... You guys were supposed to be friends, right? But you still... killed her... On the other hand, two people becoming good friends, then one killing the other is a classic drama setup. So when you consider everything together...
: ...I honestly have no idea.
: Next on the list, time to chat with our depressed psychic friend.
: Hey Hiro, can I ask you something?
: Aggh! No no no no no! I gotta get outta here! Gotta get out now! I've had enough! Gotta break free!
: Hiro, snap out of it!
: Ghh... Hrm? Huh? Makoto, what are you doing here? What...?
: Hey, um, does this look familiar?
: Ahhh! That's my crystal ball! But it's all smashed! What the hell...?
: I-I only bought it cuz the guy said it was blessed! He said it was unbreakable! So how did it break?
: Was it actually made of glass!? And not crystal!? Did that guy totally dupe me!?
: He said it belonged to the pillars of history... Genghis Khan, George Washington, Napoleon... He said whoever controlled that crystal ball controlled the world! Was that seriously all BS!?
: U-Umm...let's put that aside for now. So you can say without a doubt that this belonged to you?
: Yeah, that's mine for sure. I prolly forgot it in the laundry room last night. Someone musta come by and snatched it.
You left it in the laundry room? That means anyone could have found it and taken it.
: Thanks, Hiro. That's all I wanted to know.
: ...Um, by the way, I'm almost afraid to ask, but how much did you pay for that thing?
: Everything I saved up from fortune-telling for two full years. Came out to be like...a million.
: A m-million!?
: That's pretty cheap, actually. I mean, considering it gives you the power to control the world...
That's just too...too stupid. I can't even feel bad for him.
: We're nearing the end of the list of things to check. Time to watch the DVD Sayaka received.
I should be able to use this to see what's on the DVD. The DVD that Sayaka threw in the garbage... I sat down in front of the screen and put the DVD in the player. I pushed play, and the screen was dark for a few seconds. But then...
...an image slowly appeared. It looked like some kind of concert. And standing onstage, front and center, was a face I recognized all too well.
She was there, along with the friends she said had been so important to her. She was positively glowing there in front of the crowd. So full of life... Seeing that image made it even harder to accept that she was...dead. My vision started to blur and darken, and then... That voice I'd come to despise so much began to float out of the speakers.
: Sayaka Maizono, the Ultimate Pop Sensation--lead singer for a world-famous all-girl pop band. For these girls, the glowing spotlight only made them that much more beautiful. But then...
♪ Music cuts out. ♪
Suddenly, the screen went dark. And in the next moment I saw something I could hardly believe.
: What the--!?
Sayaka had disappeared from the stage, which was now in ruins. But what I noticed even more than that was the figures of the other girls, who had all simply...collapsed.
: This ultra-successful team suddenly fell apart! None of them will ever perform on stage again. None of them will ever feel the warmth of the spotlight. For Sayaka, there's simply nowhere for her to return to. So here's the billion-dollar question--what of what could have caused the group to go to pieces!?
Without warning, the video cut off.
: Wh-What the hell?
That wasn't real, right? They're a super famous pop group. Everyone knows who they are. Is he trying to say he was even able to get to them? If that really did happen, everyone in the outside world must be going crazy!
: What kind of person would take things this far!?
*Ding dong, bing bong*
: Erm, so ah...I'm getting tired of waiting. What say we just get started, hm? It's time for the long-awaited Class Trial! Now then, allow me to appoint a proper location for the proceedings. Please go through the red door on the 1st floor of the school! Puhuhu. See you soon!
: The red door on the 1st floor... That's where I should go. No, where I *have* to go.
: There it is, the big red door we've passed by many times by now. It has always been locked up to this point but now, we can enter.
: You're late, Makoto! We've all been waiting for you!
: Hmph. I bet y-you were afraid you would be discovered as th-the murderer you are...
: Let's not jump to conclusions just yet! Save that for the class trial! There we can all reveal the details of Makoto's crime!
So they really are convinced I did it. But...
I didn't do it. Me and Sayaka both know that all too well. But then, who *is* the killer?
The one who murdered Sayaka... Is it really one of us?
: Puhuhu... Is everyone here? Okay then... Please board the elevator in front of you, which will transport you to the courtroom...where all your fates will be decided. Puhu. I'll meet you all down there. I'll be waiting...
I guess I have no choice but to get on this elevator.
: Let us begin. *leaves*
: Good idea. *leaves*
: Are you scared?
: N-No, scared isn't quite right...
: I said it before, but it's up to you to uncover the mysteries surrounding this case yourself.
: If you don't, you'll never come to grips with the truth. *leaves*
I need to uncover the truth of Sayaka's death... I didn't need someone else to tell me to do that.
: In Sayaka's honor, I swear I'll find out who the killer is!
As I raised my voice to try and give myself courage, I turned, trembling with anticipation, toward the elevator. With each step forward, I could feel my heart starting to race faster and faster. Everyone else was already on the elevator. When I finally stepped on... the doors closed, and the elevator started to move.
♪ No music. ♪
The steel box descended with heavy clunking sounds toward the school's basement.
: I wonder if this is how a death row inmate feels when his time finally comes.
: Rather than that, is it not more like a defendant waiting to receive his judgment?
Oblivious to our shared anxiety, the elevator lowered us further and further into the bowels of the school.
: Nyohoho! You've finally arrived!
: What do you think? Doesn't it feel just like a real courtroom? It's like a Hollywood movie set, right!?
: Not even close. It's total shit.
: Okay, okay, everyone find your assigned seats and sit down!
: Hurry up now, hurry up!
We did what he said and found our seats.
The seats were arranged in a giant circle. It was set up so that everyone could see everyone else. Which also meant it'd be easy for anyone to transfer their tension and unease onto anyone else... The air seemed to grow heavy as we sat there.
And so, the curtain on our first case opened.
A deadly judgment... A deadly deception... A deadly betrayal...
A deadly riddle, a deadly defense, a deadly faith...
A deadly...Class Trial!
: Welcome to the Class Trial. This is the Pre-Trial Preparation screen, where we can set skills and review our Truth Bullets, as well as access the Options and Save/Load functions.
: The ticker along the bottom reads the following:
"What's this 'class trial' that Monokuma mentioned? Can Makoto sweep away the cloud of suspicion surrounding him, even with a dead body laying in his bathroom? And what about the blackened who's actually responsible for Sayaka's death?"
: First, I went ahead and set my skills. We currently have 9 Skill Points and a couple skills. In general, Skills help your performance in the various minigames that the trial is composed of. Here's what I've set for this trial:
Cool and Composed: Steadies your aim a little. Effective during the Nonstop Debate and the Hangman's Gambit. Costs 2 SP.
-We got this from Byakuya. It's actually very handy because in the listed minigames, the cursor you control will move around automatically. This skill reduces how much the cursor moves on its own, making it easier to aim.
Robot Jock: Increases your Truth Bullet rate of fire. Effective during the Nonstop Debate and the Bullet Time Battle Final Strike. Costs 3 SP.
-You'll see it in the next update, but when you do a Nonstop Debate you "fire" your truth bullets to punch holes in arguments. This skill reduces the time it takes for your bullet to reach the argument after it's fired. It's very useful as a quality of life skill, though definitely not essential. I went the whole game without it on my first playthrough and was fine.
Melodious Voice: Increases damage to the opponent when a statement is destroyed. Effective during the Bullet Time Battle. Costs 3 SP.
-This skill is marginally useful in that it makes the Bullet Time Battle minigame go by faster since you do more damage during it. You can easily live without it if you're low on skill point availability but since we aren't, there's no reason NOT to equip it.
: This puts us at 8/9 Skill Points used. We can get more SP from Free Time events that don't give us skills. Take advantage of every Free Time you have because SP is limited and better skills cost more SP.
: Next, we have the list of Truth Bullets from the e-Handbook. Here we can review exactly what each one says in preparation for the trial. Always be sure to review your Truth Bullets because they sometimes contain vital, specific information that helps you move the trial along. Here's the full list of Truth Bullets we have:
: ...was a stab wound to the abdomen, and her right wrist appears to have been fractured.
: ...was part of the blade.
: ...If you were going to attack someone with the sword, you would almost certainly remove the sheath first.
: ...Makoto to switch with her when someone attempted to force their way into her room, and she became frightened.
: ...theirs, either. But still...
: ...finger of her left hand, which had some blood on it.
: ...and Sayaka, the victim.
: ...it after the incident, the incinerator was, in fact, on.
: The distance from the gate to the incinerator is roughly thirty feet.
: ...Apparently, Yasuhiro left the ball in the laundry room on accident, so anyone could have come along and taken it.
: And with that, next time, we begin Trial #1.