The Let's Play Archive

Fatal Twelve

by Mix

Part 42: Curry Rice

BGM: Town

The three of us sit in silence. There's something surreal about me, Numeral IV, and Alan all hiding in a room together like this. The fact that Alan has agreed to it proves that I am right. He's avoiding the police. I figured he was a monster before, but his fight with Numeral XI made it all the more clear. His skills have nothing to do with him being a man or his massive build. I'm willing to bet that he could take on an armed officer and win, but even he doesn't want to turn the entire police force against him.

Phew. Things sorted themselves out somehow.

Shigetsugu comes along to rescue us from the suffocating silence.

I'll be taking my leave, then.

Oh? And here I was about to heat up some curry. Don't you want some?

Yay! I've been hungry ever since I got up!

A-Are you serious?!

Sure, he was a bit rough with me, but hey. He did help us out in the end. I'm sure you won't mind if he gets a taste of your curry.

A bit rough?

Never you mind. Here, take this.

He removes the leftovers from the fridge and pours it all into a pot before Alan even gets the chance to answer.

Cumin, cardamom, tumeric... Not bad. ...I will accept.


He takes a seat at the table, as expressionless as ever. As much as I want to flee right away, I'm a bit too concerned now.

So... Numeral XII isn't a baddy?

Not for now.

Really? But you're a participant too, aren't you?


So why'd you protect Shigetsugu?

I didn't. Our interests just happened to align.



I dunno what that means, but I don't care so long as you're not a baddy. What matters is that you're gonna love this curry! It's awesome.

I see.

Oh, oh, oh! And...

I start to panic as I listen to the painful exchange. The lack of emotion on Alan's face makes it impossible to tell when he'll explode over Numeral IV acting overly friendly.

What would possess the old man to take in such a runt?

A runt?

...I am referring to you.

He found me on the street and decided to take me in because I have amnesia or something.

I see. Your body must remember how to carry itself if you were able to fend off Numeral III in such a condition.

I don't think you should've said that...

I am surprised by how readily he divulges such crucial info. Alan may not be his enemy for now, but that's no reason to go and tell him everything.

Um, Sco- Er...

Just use Aran.

I wasn't sure how to address him, but he wasted no time in providing a fake name. He must be aware that I know his true name. I consider doing the same, but I'll leave it alone unless he asks.

What are you planning to do next, Aran?

I think we should leave that discussion for after we eat.

BGM: Regular Ordinary Girlish Chat

Shigetsugu butts in as he brings the curry over. He only carries two plates, since neither him nor me will be having any. Alan nods in response to that proposition. When I think about it, Alan's from India... Knowing that someone from the land of curry is about to eat my rendition of it makes me a touch nervous.

It's soooo good!


My gut sinks the moment he takes a bite. There's a huge contrast between the slow, disinterested way he eats in comparison to how Numeral IV wolfs his down. Wait... why am I nervous at all?

I never expected the similarities to go this far.

When I notice he's said something, my eyes meet his.

My family once bought some curry roux from Japan out of curiosity.

Your family... Like, your wife?

He glares at me in response.

Is this how you fish for information?

Maybe? I honestly didn't mean anything by it, though.

I see. Well, it's public knowledge that I'm not married. When I say family, I refer to a relative.

Thanks for the food!

The tension is dispersed thanks to that outburst. I'm so glad he has no idea how to read between the lines. I never expected Alan to talk about family, though. It's pretty normal for most people, but I somehow thought he was one of those rare sorts who had no attachment to them. That aside, I'll assume he didn't think the curry tasted bad since he didn't say anything about it.

Is it so odd for me to use a spoon?

N-No, of course not! The thought hadn't even crossed my mind...

Thinking about it, I guess I always do imagine people from India eating curry without utensils. I guess they only do that when eating it with naan. But since he's eating Japanese curry, I don't think about it until he brings it up. That look on his face as he asks, though... It's so meek, I can't help bursting out in laughter.

I see. Japan has a rather narrow-minded view of my home country.

Th-That's not what I'm laughing at...

He seems a little peeved, judging by the tone of his voice. My nerves, coupled with the fact that he always seems impossible to read, make it all the harder to hold back my laughter. He eventually brushes me off. He hands Numeral IV his plate and spoon to be taken to the sink.


BGM: Town

Not long after, Shigetsugu makes tea for all four of us. Alan takes a whiff of the tea before switching his cup with Shigetsugu's before taking a sip. His face contorts immediately. I can't tell if its an issue with Shigetsugu's so-called blend or Japanese tea in general, but he's more expressive than I expect. Meanwhile, Numeral IV is rolling his head around on the table out of boredom until Alan breaks the silence.

BGM: Intel Investigation Underway

Shigetsugu. I find your name somewhat difficult to pronounce, but regardless... It goes without saying what I'm here for, doesn't it?

You have your eyes on our information, correct?

Indeed. My intent is to eliminate all of you here, but I'm willing to settle for less at the moment.

Well, color me surprised. Here I was expecting you to threaten us all into giving you what you wanted.

The child mentioned having amnesia. Should that hold true, I see nothing coming from doing so. That applies to you, too. I have no evidence, but my gut is telling me that you have no recollection of your own cards, either.

I'd only be putting myself at a disadvantage by being rash.

Amazing how he can say that after what he pulled with Keiko. And he thinks Numeral IV is a girl. It proves that even he makes mistakes. Shigetsugu said that Alan's actions seemed desperate. I feel like that applies even more with what he did to Keiko. However, I'm surprised that not knowing the contents of my own cards could work out for me like this. As for Alan's comment, Numeral IV is the first to respond.

Hang on a minute! That means you wanna eliminate Shigetsugu! I won't let that happen! You're a baddy from here o-


Calm down. Pray tell, what do you plan on doing should I refuse to cooperate?

You likely know the answer. I have no intention of leaving empty-handed.

I knew it! Lemme at 'em...!

No. I don't want to see you two hurt one another. Besides, you would go after her first, wouldn't you, Aran?

I don't doubt that...

I'm ready to make my escape whenever necessary, but I doubt I could even reach the hall safely should Alan target me for real. I could negotiate with him thanks to the info I have on Shigetsugu, but right now I'd rather maintain the status quo.

I'm fine with revealing my information to you, but only on one condition.

Which would be?

I want you to serve as our bodyguard until my elimination. Your job would be to keep this house safe, especially from Numeral XI. In simpler terms, I ask that you protect both myself and this child.

Let's assume I agree to these terms. How do you plan on dealing with the other issue?

He casts his gaze over to me.

Fine. I'll refrain from electing him if you agree to go along with this.

BGM: Impatience
Why even bother?! Shigetsugu doesn't need anyone but me to protect him!

The kid's visibly flustered. But it's Alan who opts to respond.

Are you that delusional?

What's that supposed to mean?!

Shigetsugu proposes this to avoid putting you in harm's way.

It's... for me...?

I'm not the only one who caught that, huh? You wouldn't happen to have family you're close to, would you?

I will not qualify that with a response.

Is he right, Shigetsugu?

Of course he is. Strong as you may be, that doesn't make it any less distressing to see you get hurt.

But if I beat him up, then...!

Don't overestimate yourself. You may be a child, but I would hold nothing back if I fought you.

The chances of something happening to you are just too high!

It's clear that Shigetsugu sees him as family. There's a direct parallel to what he's saying now and Keiko's actions when Alan took her son hostage. Alan's face is as expressionless as ever, so I can't tell if he created this situation on purpose, or if it's mere coincidence.

Shigetsugu... I figured you'd be happy if I took down all the baddies for you...

If you really want to protect me, then why don't you take all their cards?!

For the same reason I don't want you fighting others. It's not as simple as you think.

Save this argument for later. I'm willing to accept your first condition, but only if you provide a room for me to stay in.

He clarifies his reasoning after seeing Shigetsugu's surprise.

I haven't the luxury of doing as I please here, so being provided with somewhere to stay for a few days in exchange isn't a bad deal.

Very well. Of course, I'll need you to accept my second condition as well.

I'm aware.

BGM: Silence


Numeral IV stands up mid-conversation, almost in a deliberate attempt to interrupt them.

I don't care anymore!


He leaves the room immediately. Alan doesn't seem fazed, but the same can't be said about Shigetsugu.

Pardon me. Could you give us a moment?

There's no reason to worry about his safety on the streets at night, but it's entirely possible he could start something with the police if they approach him. Leaving Alan here by himself is too risky, though. It's pretty scary to sit here all alone with him, but I stay behind, regardless.

Good grief...

I have to admit, you struck me as a far less reasonable person. Looks like I might have misjudged you.

...I see.

Perhaps buying time through conversation isn't my best idea, since I'm no good at it. And he makes it a point to say as little as possible.


Ten minutes pass and not a single word is exchanged. Alan sits, silent. The only action of note is when he blinks. I thought I'd be okay, but it's starting to get to me.

Rinka. I have a question for you.


He is so abrupt that I struggle not to jump out of my skin.

BGM: Alan

What exactly is your goal here? Your actions don't strike me as someone who wants to live through this ordeal.

I can't say he's wrong. I never even stopped going to school after Divine Selection began. Not like he knows that. He's likely basing his claim off the way I've involved myself with other participants. In all honesty, I'm not even sure how I ended up in this situation myself. But what I do know is that it's all been due to my own judgment. As often as I've questioned how much my life is worth, I've never once resigned to the idea that I'm fine with being eliminated. When I put that all together, it's easy to answer his question.

I want to live. I want to make it through this. My actions may seem roundabout from your point of view, but... this is just me staying true to who I am. I'm sure of it.

These may be extraordinary circumstances, but I'm not built to adapt to them. Average is all I know. I'm easily influenced and prone to sticking my nose into what I shouldn't. That's me. That's what defines Shishimai Rinka.

Hmph... I shouldn't have bothered to ask. The look in your eyes at the hospital told me all I needed.

Maybe it is my imagination, but I think I see him throw a faint smile as he says that.

In that case, I look forward to seeing how far that mindset can take you. For now, there's little point in pressing you for information that you have no memory of.

Wh-Who told you that...?

It's logical to assume that you forgot the contents of your own cards along with the rules of Divine Selection. Perhaps not knowing your cause of death or regret makes it easier for you to act the way you do.

The same goes for that child... Participants like that have little choice but to focus on eliminating others in order to learn about themselves.

It really was obvious that I'd forgotten everything about Divine Selection during my first visit to the Court of Fate. Especially after my discussion with Miharu and needing Parca to explain things over to me from scratch. Had he taken the possibility that I forgot my own cards into consideration ever since?

Did you agree to Shigetsugu's terms in the hopes of finding out more about the kid?

I didn't, but now that you mention it, that does make for a decent plan. That one seems the type to reveal important information when one least expects it, perhaps while asleep. Considering the amnesia, dreams can serve as a bridge to the memories buried deep within the psyche.

Hmph... That may be a bit too convenient, but your point still stands.

Cutting the conversation off here seems wise. The last thing I want is for him to somehow extract information about Miharu from me. She's set it up so everyone thinks we've had a falling-out, but at this rate, I might end up spilling the beans on that and more. Setting that aside, I'm surprised he agreed to Shigetsugu's terms so quick. Assuming what he said was true, then it isn't just because he sees value in doing so. There's more to it. He let his emotions take the wheel, from what I can tell. Not like I'll ever say that to his face.

...They took their time getting back.


Footsteps from the entrance. Feel free to check, if you want. I have no intention of breaking my promise, so I'll remain here.

He's right. I hear noises coming from the entrance. I make my way over to welcome them back.