Part 121: Everything
07/22 (SUN), Night
Phew. I think it's safe to say I had a splendid time.
Dianna breathes a sigh of joy once back at the station. We make our way to Ueno once Miharu gets off work. Mainly to go to the zoo and national museum there. The only issue is that we start in the afternoon, which means we have to rush. Dianna seems satisfied, though. At the same time, this is likely to be her final experience in the modern day.
We have time for one more place if we get moving right away.
Worry not. This will do. There's only so much happiness I can wish for when taking my situation into consideration. More importantly, do heed a selfish wish from a selfless lady and escort Naomi to places elsewhere when you can.
We will. Let's head back to Lion House, then.
Silence ensues as we wait for the train to arrive.
Sunday night finally rears its head. Tonight marks the end of the final round of Divine Selection. Myself, Miharu, and Dianna are all at Lion House. We're sitting at the usual table.
BGM: Lion House Cafe
First and foremost, allow me the pleasure of thanking you both. I had such a wonderful time these past few days.
You're welcome. I'm sure Naomi will be happy to know you enjoyed yourself.
You said you're different from the Dianna we know as Parca, but I honestly think I'd struggle to tell the difference.
Oh? That's news to me.
She giggles at first and holds a smile.
The time has come. Allow me to hand the final piece of the puzzle to you.
Wait a minute.
I notice a certain cat limping toward us, looking much thinner than usual. It must have realized what's about to happen. I make my way over to it and pick it up, placing it under the table. Yep, it's the ideal spot for Lethe to sit.
We have a curious cat among us, I see.
Dianna leans down and pets it. A certain tenderness coats her expression as she does so. One Naomi has never shown before. I can only imagine that Dianna would pet Leo like this when she were alive.
Now then. Let us discuss my regret.
And thus commenced the curtain call on my fate.
Midnight is mere moments away. Miharu and Dianna agreed to stay with me tonight. Lethe gets to join us too, of course. All so we can see each other again in the morning.
It's a shame that Naomi cannot emerge from me at this point.
She can tomorrow at least. Right?
Indeed. While I may have my regret, I have no attachment to life itself. My fate came to a close long ago. Meeting a descendant of Linda has been something of a relief, though.
Now I know that she was able to live a happy life despite being my first vessel.
She makes the same tender expression from before. We didn't spend much time together, but I've grown incredibly fond of her. Perhaps because she's in Naomi's body. Parting ways hurts, but I'll never forget her.
I never anticipated a night like this would come to pass back when Divine Selection began. At first, I was focused on my own survival, but my priority shifted after seeing you in the Court of Fate.
Let me be honest. I was planning on letting you elect me had you given me a proper response to my confession. Regardless of what it was.
I figured as much.
That's not the case anymore, though. And not just because I want to hear your response. I've come to understand the inherent value that comes with wishing for my own survival.
Miharu's statement makes me see her in a whole different light. I give her a tiny nod after basking in the radiance of her smile for a moment.
I've come to learn a lot during all this, too. I've been entrusted with plenty. There was a time when you two, Mao, and my gran were the only people that mattered to me. I had no interest in anything other than Lion House and school. The things I cherish now are things I never would've considered back then.
I better understand how much the world has to offer. Even if only a little. Most importantly, though... I've come to understand and accept who I am.
I see myself as something of an unstable existence. To the point where I'm worried I might just disappear altogether if I'm not with someone. But... even so... I want to live. I know I'm not alone. That's why I want to live. I want to keep on living. Keep on experiencing precious moments in my daily life, together with those I know.
Lethe lets out a meek groan. It's stretching its front legs in the air despite its current state.
That is certainly one way to bolster morale.
We should do something, too.
Let's hold hands, then.
Miharu grabs my hand before I can answer. I grab Naomi's in turn, and she in turn grabs Miharu's.
One body, yet two individual wills are contained within it.
We lie down and form a circle before closing our eyes.
See you both tomorrow.
We don't need to do anything fancy or cool.
All we have to do is believe.
Sleep eventually takes us, our hands still joined.
[END OF WEEK TWELVE (PART A): A CLEAR-CUT WISH]