The Let's Play Archive

Fatal Twelve

by Mix

Part 37: Equivalent Exchange

BGM: Villain

05/30 (WED), Night
...I just sigh as I take in the unfamiliar room. Mainly because I know the situation I'm in all too well.

Rest assured, I've put nothing dubious in your tea.

Thanks, but no thanks.

Trust me, had I wanted to examine your ID and such, I would have done so already. This is my attempt at being hospitable.

While taken aback, I accept the cup and have a sip. There's not much taste to it. Well, it's to be expected, when the drink is more yellow than green. As for why I'm in Shigetsugu's house, he brought me inside after that headache knocked me for a loop. Both myself and that girl were told to rest until the pain subsided, but she hasn't woken up yet. I notice her fidgeting in her sleep, which leads to my involuntarily gulping down the tea.

O-ho... Rather impressive.

Thank you for helping me, but I've stayed long enough already.

Sure. Just remember that my stance on the matter won't change.

...Yeah, I won't.

He may not see me as his enemy, but there's no denying that we will ultimately have to compete with one another. Not to mention that the girl made no effort to hide her hostility toward me. Sure, I'm curious about the sudden headache that hit us when we met, but it's too dangerous to stay here. I want to be gone before she wakes up. These walls are thin enough that people outside would hear me if I screamed, but there's no guarantee they'd actually try to help.

Nngh... Shigetsugu...

Are you feeling better?

Yeah. Sorry for making you worry...

There's no reason to apologize. Have some tea.

Hehe... Thanks.

I hadn't intended on staring, but I couldn't take my eyes off them. It is a quick exchange, but the two of them really seem like an average grandfather and granddaughter. The warmth in his expression reminds me of how my own grandmother looks at me. I planned to leave as quick as possible, but after witnessing that scene, my feet feel stuck to the floor. Which gives the girl an opportunity to turn her attention to me.


I keep my mouth shut. There's no reason to respond. I'm better off going straight home.

Oh, you're still here? This girl may be a participant, but that's no excuse to glare at her the way you did. She isn't our enemy, after all. Make sure to apologize for your behavior before she leaves.

Right... I was on edge because two others came here this afternoon to scrounge up information on you, Shigetsugu. When I saw you two talking, I thought she might be in cahoots with them. In any case, I do apologize.

This isn't half-hearted. She's even bowing her head. You see scenarios like this often. The granddaughter does something, and then apologizes when her grandfather tells her to. I would honestly believe that these two are family, had I not known they're participants. Even though they look so different. They're not just playing the parts. Everything about their interaction feels authentic. That just makes things harder for me...

Oh, I'm not particularly upset about it. Don't worry...

I can't blame her though, considering my attitude toward him. Of course, it's not like I've decided to let my guard down around them now. My standing by the front door to ensure my escape serves as proof. However, something she said piqued my interest. I have to confirm with her before leaving.

Two others came here earlier, you said. They wouldn't happen to have been a tall man and woman, would they?

How did you know?

I've... been keeping an eye out for them, as well.

Her eyes widen. Shigetsugu, on the other hand, listens without reacting.

I take it you know who I'm referring to.

They came by earlier, so yes.

Beg your pardon?

Oh, I haven't gotten to tell you yet. They're the reason why the house is a mess.

I did notice some disorganization, but I assumed that's how they lived. I don't mean there's trash lying around, but there are a number of newspapers, magazines, and articles of clothing dotting the floor.

You know Numerals III and IX, don't you?

I remember what they look like. Mind explaining what happened?

I've completely lost my chance to leave now.

You should listen to this, as well. But in return, we would like some information.

He motions for me to sit closer, probably because he knows I've lost my chance to go, too.

Those two made their way into the house looking for you. It wasn't long after you'd left, actually.

I was aware that they'd been scouting out the house from when I last came here. They probably have been for several days. Knowing Shigetsugu leaves in the morning, they figured he'd stick to the routine today, as well.

I made sure to chase them off, though. The woman was tough, but the man was no threat.

What? You... chased those two off?!

She's about my height, but she's definitely way younger. And extremely slender. Judging from how she said Numeral XI was tough, I doubt she gave them a simple verbal threat. These are the same two who took Sonya's parents hostage. As if they'd listen to a kid's threat.

They got away, but I did manage to severely wound Numeral III. We should be safe for a few days thanks to that.

...So you resorted to violence again?

I had no choice. It was the only way to keep them out. Besides, they attacked first.

Wait a minute. You fought them? Like... how?

I'm not sure. I just... know how to fight for some reason.

Is that even possible...?

And now I'm suspicious of them again. It's not impossible for her to make this up in an attempt to reel information out of me.

This one suffers from amnesia, you see.

Should you be telling her that?

It's hardly an issue. There's little for you to lose by telling her.

I'm fine with it, but... Whatever. It should be okay.

This child had nowhere to go when Divine Selection began. We started living together not long after our first encounter.

I don't remember a single thing about what happened before Divine Selection. My name, my destination, or even why I became a participant. I don't even know the contents of my own personal cards, so there's no point in trying to uncover my cause of death and regret. Not only did I forget why I'm in Japan, but I didn't even know that I wasn't born here until I met Shigetsugu.

Amnesia. Something we have in common. The only difference is that she's lost all of her memories. I've forgotten bits and pieces prior to and after Divine Selection began, but not enough to affect my life. She, meanwhile, doesn't even know where she is. I can't even begin to imagine...

I met Shigetsugu pretty quick, though, so it's not as bad as you may think.

She follows up with a pleasant smile. I find it hard to believe that someone with a smile like this could fend those two off. I've heard about how one retains their personal habits and skills when suffering from amnesia. The loss of personal memory doesn't influence muscle memory, or something. But that means she had the ability to go toe to toe with those two even before the amnesia.

Right. I'm sure there's more you want to hear, but I do believe it's your turn now.

He turns his attention to me after cutting the conversation short. I guess he did mention some sort of reciprocity of information before. I decide to tell them what I know about those two.


BGM: Intel Investigation Underway

I fully expected participants to resort to extreme measures, but those two truly raise the bar.

I tell them about what they did to Sonya and her parents. Holding a child's parents hostage in order to make them reveal their information. Sheer brute force. However, I make sure not to mention that I have Federico's name card. They never mentioned what cards they have, so fair's fair.

I guess you had little choice but to retaliate, then.

See? I knew what I was doing!

Yes, yes. Here, I'll pat your head as a reward.


Do keep in mind that you are putting yourself at risk, though. Be more careful next time.

Okay. You don't need to worry, though. I won't lose to anyone.

Her attitude turns out to be far more childlike than her appearance. From my perspective, she's like a kid who gets carried away after being given a little praise. Still, what she said holds weight if she really was able to fight those two off. Her unpredictability is definitely a concern. Sonya, at least, accepted the fact that she was a participant. These two, on the other hand, care only about living out their lives like normal people.

You should understand by now that we truly have no intention of taking part in all this. Please don't get involved with us anymore.

His choice of words makes me think he's somehow read my mind. I'm not sure if that's intentional, but I am stunned either way. Then I realize it. They're not normal at all. Even real families would struggle to act as legit as these two do. Plus, they're both participants. This is insane.

Those two won't give up, though. They'll be back as soon as Numeral III's recovered, or maybe even earlier. Eliminating us is the only way they can survive, so they have to return.

Are you, perhaps, worried about us?


You came here for our information, correct? Why would you bother to worry about us?

I dunno. I just... do, I guess.

That's right. I'm far from normal, myself.

That's not quite the response I expected after all your talk about finding answers.

...You really are annoying, aren't you?

Not that he's wrong. That's why he's been so calm this entire time. He's never seen me as a threat.

Are you making fun of him?

Uh, no. Not quite.

Hoho! No need to worry about that. I see you went shopping earlier. What did you buy?

Oh, that washer thing got broken thanks to those two, so I went out to get something for it. I'm not really sure what it is. The clerk recommended it.

I'll assume you mean the washing machine. What's with the hose?

They said you'd know what to do with it...

Next to her is a washing machine hose. I recognize the logo on the bag. She must have bought it at one of the nearby supermarkets.

I'm not one to fidget with machines, unfortunately...

What were you gonna do if the washer broke, then?

Fortunately, there's a coin-op laundry close by.

Coin-op laundry?

You go there and pay to use their laundry machines.

You said you'd cut down on other expenses for the sake of pachinko! We can't do that!

I really want to say something, but I don't. She might actually believe what he says about it being a battlefield. Shigetsugu, meanwhile, takes the hose before returning his gaze toward me.

You know how to fix this, don't you?

...That figures.

In the back of my mind, I knew I'd end up being asked based on their exchange.

I'll replace the hose, but I'm going home after that.

Thank you very much!

BGM: Town

Ugh, gross. How long has it been since this thing was cleaned? Someone get me a pair of plastic gloves. Man... so much for going straight home... Even their drain's a mess... Phew. Mind helping me rinse this?

Oh, okay.

No, no! Not like that! Get the water from the bathroom!

BGM: Silence


And thus I faced my fate of getting a torrent of washing machine water to the face.