Part 291: Foreseeing the future / Rin's advice / Sunset townMusic: Tender Scenery
Go ahead, day duty Wait, Aikawa-kun's absent, and Aimono-san's absent too? All right, I guess I'll go ahead. Stand up, every one."
There are more absent people, giving the room a listless feel.
Well, I think the whole school is probably like this.
Fuji-Nee lightly continues homeroom, but I don't see her usual spirit either.
"So, you can't have any club practices after school.
That's all I have to tell you. Oh, your first period teacher, Kuzuki-Sensei, is absent, so you have self-study. I brought you all a handout, so work on that, everyone."
He's never coming back.
Everyone unanimously cheers and starts moving their desks.
Fuji-Nee doesn't care if people work on the handout or not, so everyone's free to do anything as long as they don't go out of the classroom. But
"Yeah, but I couldn't go see you this morning, right? So I got really worried and was wondering if you're all right."
" ? What is it all of a sudden? What are you uneasy about?"
"Hmm, I don't really know. I just have this hunch.
Any time I get this hunch, you could get run over by a car or fall off a bridge. So I'm wondering if you're all right."
"Man. That's normal. If you call that dangerous, I've been in danger all my life."
"Yeah, but I'm just worried.
It feels like there's a train we have to get on together, but you're still at the platform and I'm waving goodbye to you."
Whatever's about to go down is really big, isn't it?
"Hmm. That's pretty concrete So you woke up after that?"
"Oh, you can tell? I woke up late because of that."
So she didn't come to my house because she just woke up late?
Well, I'll forgive her, since that's what I expect from Fuji-Nee.
"Don't worry, I'm like always. You've got dark circles under your eyes, Fuji-Nee. You need more sleep."
"Huh? Well, yeah. It was busy yesterday, and it looks like it'll be busy today as well. I don't think I'll be able to go over to your place, since I'll be working overtime for a while. Much as I hate to say it, you don't have to make meals for me."
Why not just kill her while you're at it, Nasu?
"That's all. Go and work on the handout. You're not doing too well in social studies, so you might fail if you don't go study hard."
Fuji-Nee cheerfully waves goodbye and leaves.
This is the saddest update.
Music: Surrounded by Smiling Faces
I can't ignore that shadow either. I don't know the magus behind it, but I can't let him run freely on my land."
"Then can we still keep our peace?"
"Of course. We don't have much of an option until we eliminate the shadow."
Our conversation ends really quickly.
I went to Tohsaka's classroom, class 2-A, during lunchtime to go get her.
I told her I want to do something about that "black shadow", and her answer was simple.
"What do you want to do? Should we patrol together starting tonight or do things separately?"
"Let's see I agree, we should divide the workload.
You can keep doing your nightly patrols. Investigate any place that you or Saber think is strange.
And I'll go after Zouken while you move around in the open."
" Matou Zouken? Does he have something to do with the shadow?"
"Who knows? It doesn't seem likely, since Zouken was more terrified than any of us, but something's bugging me.
Well, we can't let him be, regardless. He's acting suspicious, controlling Caster's corpse and making a non-magus like Shinji into a Master."
"I see. You're right. Come to think of it, we joined hands against Caster. So we can't ignore that old man."
"Right. Let's fight that shadow after everything else is taken care of. Even if you find it, don't fight and just investigate it. We have to prepare before we go for the kill."
"Okay, but what are you going to do? You say you're going to follow Zouken, but do you know where he is?"
"Huh ? Oh, I don't know where he is, but I'm going to go to the Matou household. My family is connected to them, so I'm more qualified."
Tohsaka states it simply.
But her plan isn't that simple.
She has rolaids in her purse, so she's also more qualified to find the shadow.
"G-Go to the Matou household!? That means you're going into the enemy base!"
"I know. What are you so surprised about? I'm not going there to fight. I'm just going to investigate."
"Whatare you stupid!? What if Zouken ambushes you!?
I can't let you go alone. I'll go too, so don't be so reckless!"
I told you, I know the Matou family. I know their magic, and I can tell how strong Zouken is from yesterday's battle. He's no match for me.
That old magus is using most of his magical energy to maintain his body, so he doesn't have a direct way to attack me."
"It'd actually be convenient if he came at me head-on. And Shinji's harmless because he's not a Master anymore.
You can leave the stale fight between magi to me. You go ahead and collect information."
I can't talk back if she can declare it like that.
Archer will be with her, so I shouldn't worry that much.
" All right. I'll leave Matou Zouken to you. Saber and I will look for the shadow."
"Yes, please do. And Emiya-kun. Sakura is at your house, right?"
" ? Yeah, she's staying over. What about it?"
"No, it's nothing. I'm just relieved to hear that.
It wouldn't be good if she happened to be at the mansion when I go, right?"
"Oh, you're right. I'm surprised. You're really thoughtful."
"H-Hey, why are you looking so surprised? What kind of a person did you think I was?"
"Well, um "
I thought she was like a storm, coming and going in a flash.
Anyway, I'm going to take care of Matou, so you stay quiet in your house until nightfall."
"All right. I'll leave it to you and go train with Saber. There's still some time until the sun sets."
I get up and head to the door.
Lunch break is almost over, so I should go back soon.
"Bye, Tohsaka. Let's meet here again tomorrow."
"Yes. Let's exchange what we've learned.
Oh, but Emiya-kun."
It's bad when she smiles like that.
I get this bad feeling and hurry to the door, but
"I don't know about training.
Isn't there something else you could do with your free time?
Like caring for the girl living under your own roof?"
I'm within her range.
"W-What are you saying, you idiot !!
S-Sakura's nothing like that, and I'm just having her stay over while Shinji's in a bad mood"
"Oh. I meant you should let Saber get some rest. That's unexpected. Sakura's the first one to come to your mind when I mention the word 'girl'?"
"Ah, um, ugh"
I can feel my face burning.
I feel like my brain is boiling. I half-expect steam to come shooting out of my ears.
"I'm just joking. I'm just getting back at you. Did you like that?"
" Hey now. I would doubt your sanity if you liked such a thing."
Strength escapes my body.
I feel like a marionette whose strings have been cut.
"Oh, right. That's your weak spot. I guess it was an ill-natured joke."
"Heh, you're the one that's ill-natured. I'm going ahead!"
" ! Damn, see you tomorrow, Tohsaka!"
I stalk back into the building, slamming the door behind me.
Tohsaka's starting to have fun by mocking me.
Refused to try the mapo tofu.
"Hm? No, I was just looking at the school. It's rare for everyone to go home like this, right?"
"You're right. But we can go home together because of that. Should we stop by the shopping district?"
"Yeah, let's buy stuff for dinner. Fuji-Nee can't come over for a while, so it'll be for me, you, and Saber."
That's probably for the best. I bet Sakura would get jealous.
" There's no one here. Is this place not used that often?"
"I guess that's how it is. There were people here until the sun set when I was a child, but I guess it's like this now except for the holidays."
"I see. It's kind of lonely."
"Let's go. You don't get this time off very often, so we should relax."
We leave the park.
With an energetic reply, Sakura follows after me.