Part 98: Chapter 4 Deadly Life, Part 1
: Sakura's...dead? She's...really dead?
I heard Hina talking, but my eyes stared steadily forward. I could only look forward. I could only look on...at Sakura's dead body.
: We didn't make it in time. It's happened again...
Muttering to herself, Kyoko began to gently inspect Sakura's body. I wondered, was she confirming that Sakura really was dead? Checking for a pulse, or a reaction?
: ... I have to go get them... I have to go get...the others... *leaves*
On shaky legs, Hina left the rec room. And I...
: Why...? Why...did this have to happen?
That's all I could say. I repeated it over and over again...
: I need to examine Sakura's body...
I just stood there motionless behind her, while she checked Sakura's corpse. Time passed. While I stood there, unable to do a thing, time just...passed. And after I don't know how long...
: I got everyone...
: Uwah! O-Ogre!?
: Oh. So she's dead, huh?
: Sakura's been killed? I see...
As soon as they arrived, Kyoko began...
: You heard the announcement just now, right? So you know what this means.
: Sakura was murdered. And by someone in this very room... Is that what you were going to say?
: ...No. Whoever killed her...it's not just "someone in this room."
: It was one of you... Hiro, Byakuya, Toko--one of you killed Sakura!
: You're accusing us before we've even begun the investigation?
: I don't need to investigate anything... Because you hated her. You hated the sight of her! One of you did it, I know it!
???: You...know it?
: Jeez, I didn't know your power level would increase by that much just by getting mad!
: What are you doing here...?
: Isn't it obvious? I'm here to hand out my little murder flyer.
: That's right! It's the next Monokuma File!
: And don't get so mad, Miss Asahina, or you're gonna ruin that lewd little face of yours! Now then! With that, I--
: Hold on... There's something I want to ask you...
: It was you, wasn't it? You killed Sakura?
: Huh huh?
: Sakura wanted to challenge the mastermind to a duel. Maybe you and her fought again, and then...
: Then I killed her?
: Sorry, not quite! Actually, not even close.
: That whole thing is totally irrelevant now! Sakura came to a most regrettable end without even getting the chance to finish things with me...
: Which, thank God for that! It saved me the trouble of having to go through with our little fight.
: Cuz even for someone like me, it would've been no mean feat to take down a behemoth like that!
: I gotta tell ya, I was actually pretty worried! I mean, she'd violated a rule by attacking me in the first place, but I wasn't able to punish her!
: So I dunno who it was, but whoever the blackened is this time...I owe ya one!
: Y-You owe them one!?
: Oopsie! Before you get all pissy-potty at me, you better figure out who did it first!
: Cuz I mean...your lives are all on the line, right?
: Puhuhu... Puhuhuhuhu! *leaves*
: What the hell...? He owes them one?
: I hate him! I hate this whole thing!
: Well I, for one, am glad it was Sakura. She was working for the mastermind, after all.
: H-How can you say that now...!?
: Sorry, I don't have time for your squabbling. The next game has already begun... If you want to be angry at someone, be angry at whoever killed Sakura.
: Right now, our top priority needs to be uncovering Sakura's killer. If we can't do that, we're all dead.
: Then let's decide who will stand guard this time.
: ...I'll do it.
: I'm okay... Just let me handle it...!
: Besides, I...I want to be here...with Sakura.
: Okay, then Hina is guard number one. But we need one more.
: Kyoko, that's you.
: You're always a thorn in my side. This time just stand by and watch quietly. Consider that an order.
: An o-order!?
: Fine. I'll stay behind.
: Then it's settled. Let's begin, shall we?
: ...Hold on! Before that, there's something I want to say.
: Which is...?
: Hiro, Byakuya, Toko--none of you are allowed to step foot in the crime scene.
: One of you killed Sakura!
: I won't let someone like that come anywhere near her!
: Don't be stupid. Our lives are in just as much danger as yours! We have every right to investigate.
: I don't care what you say. I'm not letting the one who killed Sakura anywhere near her.
: Even if it means I have to use force, you're not getting in here...!
: Well, it appears further discussion would be a waste of time. How about a compromise?
: I won't ask you to let all of us in. Just let me.
: You don't really care, do you? You're both useless, anyway.
: Nope, don't really caaaare!
: I'd rather spend my time coming up with another splendid fantasy involving Master, anyway!
: And you, Hiro? Do you really object?
: I-If you're gonna go that far, what can I do? I mean, I don't have anything to hide, so why should I care?
: Then it's decided.
: Nothing's decided!
: I know how you feel, Hina, but you should agree to his request.
: We have to find out who killed Sakura.
: For those of us still alive, and to honor Sakura's memory...
: ...Fine. I guess that's okay. But no matter what, Byakuya, you absolutely aren't allowed to touch her...!
: Naturally. Who would want to touch a filthy dead body?
: That's enough fighting. We need to focus on the investigation from here on out. Everyone, keep this in mind. If we can't uncover Sakura's killer...
: ...all of us face execution.
Finding out who killed Sakura... It's not a matter of hoping we can do it... If we want to survive, we *have* to do it. It's a kind of...hopeless hope. We have no choice but to just do it...!
I'd better check the Monokuma File before anything else...
"The victim was Sakura Ogami. The time of death is estimated to be around 12 noon. The body was discovered in the rec room, on the 3rd floor of the school. There is evidence of a strong blow to the victim's head. No other injuries were noted. However, it seems that at some point, the victim suffered from violent vomiting of blood."
: I think the case this time might be...a challenge.
: Why's that...?
: The only way into the rec room is the door we just came through. And that door had been jammed shut with the chair from inside the rec room. Which means the killed would have had to escape somehow, *after* barring the door.
: So if the door was blocked from the inside, and there was no way in or out till we broke the window... There's like...zero escape, right?
: In other words, this is a classic locked room murder.
: L-Locked room murder...?
I guess you might see this kind of thing a lot in mystery movies or books or whatever. But could it really happen in real life...? And right before our very eyes like this?
: Are you curious to hear more about what a "locked room" murder entails?
: S-Sure, if you don't mind...
: When you break down this type of murder mystery, there are four basic types. The first type is when the locked room is created after the actual crime is committed. This simply means that the killer commits his crime, then through some special method seals the room. This mainly involves some sort of trick involving the "locking" of the room. Basic approaches include using a string, or simple mechanism. There are a number of variations.
So for that, all we'd have to do is check the door to see if that's what it was, right?
: The second type is when the locked room already exists before the crime is committed.
: Basically, the killer uses a special contraption or tool from outside to target the victim inside. You push a switch and it fires a handgun, you shoot an arrow through a gap in the door, something like that.
: But in this case, that doesn't seem to fit. There are no guns or arrows in the school, and the door doesn't have any gap that would allow it...
Yeah, I think we can probably cross that one off the list...
: The third type is when the killer stays in the room until it's opened up.
: What do you mean by that...?
: They stay hidden, and when the door is opened, they use the confusion to blend in with the group. They pretend they showed up along with everyone else, and that's that.
That sounds like it could have been possible...maybe...
: And the fourth and final type is when it wasn't actually a locked room at all.
: Not a locked room...?
: By that I mean, there actually is an alternate escape route somewhere within the room. You see this a lot in novels and things, but in reality it's generally not possible.
: Then you think we can cross that one off, too?
: I believe so, yes. So, when it comes to locked room mysteries, those are the basics.
: So there are four possibilities... Then...Kyoko, which of those four choices seems the most likely in this case?
: That's a good question. Answering that should be our primary focus during this trial. But right now...I can't really say.
: I see...
The way the killer set up the locked room... Until I figure that out, the truth behind Sakura's death will stay hidden. It's definitely a tough mystery... I need to concentrate and investigate as much as I can. For Sakura, if nothing else...