Part 50: Entry Forty-Five: December 10th, 2009
Entry Forty-Five: December 10th, 2009
Mood: ...Do you have to ask?
So...it's been a week, and we're still going to die. What else can I say?
It's hard to talk about the other guys here at the dorm, for instance. They're all as afraid as I am.
It's all we can think about.
We haven't even been to Tartarus in the past week because we can't get our minds off the Fall. Can you blame us?
Oh, it gets worse: apparently there's a rumor spreading that Apathy Syndrome isn't a big deal, so any help we might have gotten from the public is gone. Not like anyone would believe a bunch of high schoolers talking about the end of the world anyway, but it's still disheartening.
I've been trying to maintain some sense of normalcy, at least. I've still been hanging out with my friends, but it's just been reminding me how alone we are in this.
I couldn't tell Kenji that the embodiment of Death itself is coming to turn us all into drooling zombies, for instance.
He's too busy being involved in an ethical scandal.
Kenji: It's like all of a sudden, she won't take my phone calls or reply to my text messages...she's probably only doing this to protect me, but still. I can't just sit here and do nothing...I gotta think of a plan...
Is it wrong that I envy Kenji?
Sure, he's got problems, but at least he'll live to tell about them...or he thinks he will, anyway.
So hanging out with my friends sucks, being back at the dorm sucks...
...and nobody wants to go to Tartarus to let out some of this pent up frustration, so I'm stuck doing nada. Instead, I talked to the others about what's been happening lately to try and get their minds off it.
For instance, Fuuka knew the reason why we'd all joined together to form SEES. It wasn't random after all; we'd all been pulled here by my fusion with Ryoji.
As for what had happened to me, well, here it is again: I was there when Aigis battled Death...that is, Ryoji in his natural state. Aigis couldn't finish him off, so instead, she locked him up inside my mind.
If I were to fall during battle, Ryoji would've been released prematurely, and we'd be fucked even more than we are now. Even now, if I were to fall, my death might damage the delicate balance that's keeping Nyx from showing up immediately, so we can't let that happen. I've gotta be careful if we head back to Tartarus.
When I returned here, with no memories of what had happened, my/Ryoji's presence awoke the twelve Arcana once more, and that's how we ended up where we are now.
It explains the headaches I had over hearing about my parents' deaths. Those are gone now, by the way. I'm not really surprised by that.
Mitsuru had information on Aigis; she'd been seriously damaged when battling Ryoji. That guy must have been loaded for bear, but that's not surprising given what he is.
She had considered Ryoji "dangerous" because some latent part of her memory was still there, and she recognized him as Death. We all thought it was some kind of silly robot crush or something. Go SEES, masters of observation.
As for Ryoji, he's the thirteenth and final Arcana: Death. If it wasn't for being sealed up inside me, we'd be dead already; instead, he took on some of my human qualities, and ended up giving us the choice we now have.
Speaking of that choice, Yukari was busy pondering it. She restated what we all already know: Nyx isn't so much an entity as a concept. You can't defeat Nyx, much like you can't defeat the color blue. It just doesn't work that way, according to Ryoji.
Instead, we've got two options. We can let Ryoji live, but if we do so we'll have to face Nyx, and then we run into the problem I just mentioned: we don't even know if it's physically possible for us to battle Nyx, much less win if we do.
The alternative is to kill Ryoji. This is the option he wants us to take, and I think it's what Aigis wants us to do as well. Upon Ryoji's death, he'll merge with the other Arcana and vanish; however, Nyx's coming will be delayed. If we do this, however, we'll be forced to give up all memories of what's happened; we'd barely even know each other aside from being acquaintances, and we wouldn't remember Fuuka, Ken, Koro, or Aigis at all.
Akihiko was thinking about some more basic questions. Shadows, for instance. They're fragments of Nyx, and they exist to call her back to this world. When she comes back...well, we're fucked. Remember the dinosaurs? It'll be that all over again.
This is why it wasn't as big a deal when we defeated the smaller normal Shadows; they're each such tiny fragments of Nyx that she doesn't notice.
As for the Appriser, that's Ryoji. His very existence confirms that Nyx is coming; basically he's the harbinger of the Fall. Bad news for the human race...well, for every form of life. Death is the great equalizer: it doesn't discriminate.
And Nyx? Well, like I said, we're not sure what exactly Nyx is beyond a concept. She's the origin of Death, and when she shows up, it's over.
Anyway, Ryoji's gone for good now, even at school. I doubt we'll be seeing him again until New Year's Eve.
Like I said, I've been doing my best to keep things real, but it's not going too great. How could I tell Chihiro what's going to happen? She can barely handle everyday life.
What about Tanaka? How would he react?
Tanaka: He said "Thank you." He told me he quit his part time job and was going to study to become a public prosecutor; he wants to punish businessmen like me for bending the rules. He said I was an example of a negative role model. As if!
Tanaka: Lord knows what they would do to me in prison! ...Would you still come visit me if I was in the slammer?
Somehow, I doubt he'll have to worry about that.
There's bigger problems on the horizon. Much bigger.
So big that we're torn to pieces. It'd been three days and nobody had even come close to recovery yet.
Yukari noticed it, too.
Oh, get this: there's exams coming up on Monday. Fucking final exams when the world's about to be destroyed.
My life is a goddamn mess.
I saw Tanaka again on the seventh.
Tanaka: But no matter how attractive she was, I was repulsed by her dedication to charity work. If I say no to donating, though, the tabloids will tear me to shreds...why should I have to give my hard-earned money to a bunch of freeloaders?
Tanaka: That's what I had always dreamt of, but to tell you the truth, now I have too much money. Profits are booming, but I'm so busy I don't have time to spend a dime. Maybe I should train someone to take my place.
Tanaka: I could create a carbon copy of me! It would probably cost me a fortune, but if it works then I could sit back and relax in my massage chair!
Tanaka: Just kidding. People would think I'm a weirdo if I adopted a boy as old as you.
Y'know, it's funny. I don't think my biggest accomplishment in this whole ordeal has anything to do with battle or Shadows.
It's making all of this appear normal to everyone else, even now. They don't know what's coming. They'll never know.
...what could I tell Maiko? She's a little girl, not even in middle school yet. How could her mind comprehend the idea that the entire world is just going to die one day?
Hell, she's too busy worrying about her parents' divorce. For her, it's already like the world is falling apart.
I did meet her parents the other day, though.
Woman: Calm down? Calm down?! What if something happens to her!
Man: Oh please! This is what happens when you force a child to study non-stop!
Man: She said she hung out with a high school kid instead of practicing piano.
Woman: This is the first I've heard of it! What the Hell did you do to my daughter?!
She was furious, but I just stood there and stared.
Man: Look, we're Maiko's parents, and basically we haven't seen her since this morning. We found a note in her room that said "I'm running away. -Maiko"
I told them that we could find her, and suggested she might be at the takoyaki stand...
...which, as it turns out, is right where she was.
Maiko: Well, I...um...I...
Maiko's Mom: Are you oaky, darling?! Are you hurt? What happened...?
Maiko: Yeah, I'm okay...
Maiko's Mom: Oh, what a relief...
I guess to a child, an angry mother is about as scary as Nyx is to us...
Maiko: Y-you guys made me worry too! I was so scared...you said you were getting a divorce, and I didn't know what to do! I don't want you to get divorced because of me!
That feeling of powerlessness is all too familiar lately.
Maiko's Dad: We're really sorry, Maiko. Why don't we go home and talk about this?
I'll continue to help where I can, I guess.
It's all I can do.
I can't help but think of how futile everything is now, though...
...even if I've still got that thin shred of hope telling me not to give up just yet.
School's doing a great job of killing that, though. Thanks, educational system, you're doing your job as always.
Maiko seems to be getting better, at least. Her parents might actually be trying to work things out.
Anyway, this morning, Mitsuru and I decided to call a dorm meeting together to talk about recent events. It's better than going on like we have been.
I also went to see Maiko again today.
She wanted to go to Wild-Duck Burger...
...so that's exactly what we did.
Maiko: They talked to me about why they were getting divorced. I was sad, but I listened to what they said...they said when there's no love, it's hard to still be married. They said not to worry, because they would always love me.
Maiko: Even if you don't have love, you still have to try!
That hit home in a bit of a odd way...
...y'know, writing about this has made me think.
Is it really a foregone conclusion?
Is there really no way to stop the Fall?
I don't know. Neither does anyone else, based on how the meeting tonight went.
Fuuka: You just seem so calm...
Yukari: We have to make a decision...I mean, it's been such a drag around here lately, and no one will go to Tartarus...
Mitsuru: ...You're right. We humans are quite resilient. We can adapt to any situation, given enough time.
Ken: ...Have you made your decision, Sanada-san?
Akihiko: No...but I don't plan on running away.
Akihiko: What about you? What are your thoughts on it?
Mitsuru: But either way, we still die, so there is no simple answer.
Fuuka: Well, I, um...
Yukari: It's okay, Fuuka. I mean, it's not natural to choose how you're going to die...
Yukari: What's the matter? Scared?
Mitsuru: Then what do you want to do? Do you want to kill him?
That...it's not fair, but...he's right, in a way.
I did my part to bring this down on us all...
...and in the end, when it comes time to make our decision...
...it's going to be up to me.
Junpei: He started drinking after he was tricked into investing his lfie savings in some telemarketing scam...
Fuuka: I know how you feel, Junpei-kun. I'm scared too.
Akihiko: Yeah, we're all scared.
She had a point. We're still too shook up to decide.
You guys have helped with your input, though.
It's so scary, though. When the time comes...
...I'm going to be the one to determine the fate of the world.
And I don't want to think about that anymore.
Coming up in the next entry: Twenty-one days...