The Let's Play Archive

Umineko no Naku Koro ni Chiru

by ProfessorProf

Part 113: Prologue

Good morning. This farewell is sad for me as it is for you.

I've prepared a goodbye party for tonight. A game tournament will be included as well, so please feel free to participate.

The difficulty is small, but not to be trifled with. Why don't you try joining in... now, at the end?

BGM: S/he End

The big brother who would never return from that day 12 years in the past, and the little sister who waited all alone 12 years in the future. However, the big brother knew everything... understood everything. And the little sister knew nothing... understood nothing. So, no matter how much time passed, the little sister remained as the girl she had been 12 years before. She remained a six-year-old girl forever...

Her sobs into her big brother's chest finally subsided... She quietly waited for his next words. After patting her head gently, the big brother fished around inside his shirt pocket. Then, he took 'that' out.

"...What is it...? A key...?"

Battler took a large key attached to a necklace out of his pocket, then held it out to Ange. It was large enough to cover Battler's entire palm, and little Ange probably wouldn't even be able to wrap her hand all the way around it. The key glittered gold and had a beautiful, intricate design. Its weight alone made it clear that this key was something very important. Battler put the necklace around Ange's neck.

"This precious key is yours alone, Ange."

"The time to use it will come soon. When it does, you'll have to decide for yourself. Understand?"

...Of course, she didn't have a clue what Battler was saying. But she did realize that he was telling her to take good care of this key. So, Ange nodded, at least in response to that part. In her hand, the key had felt heavy. However, now that it was around her neck, it felt as light as an ordinary necklace. How strange.

"Okay, let's go."

She had been sure that her brother was about to sit down. Just a second ago, he had said that he'd tell her what happened on Rokkenjima that day. She had thought that he would tell her here...

"On that day, on that island... What happened?"
"Weren't you about to tell me that, Onii-chan...?"
"Oh, I will. I'll tell the story and let you listen. However, it might be the kind of thing you can't really feel if you just hear about it from someone else."
"...What do you mean...?"
"What you really want... isn't to know what happened on that island on that day."

...So, he does understand, after all. What happened on that island that day? Trying to answer that question was all I was capable of, so I wished for nothing more. But, if I could... I'd... want to go there. To that island. On that day. To Rokkenjima, on that day I couldn't go... To the Ushiromiya family mansion.

Mom and Dad. All the cousins, all the relatives. And... everyone else. I want to go back... to that island on that day. So, I've always remained the way I was on that day. My heart and soul stopped, stuck as a six-year-old's forever...

"I know."
"Mom, Dad, Onii-chan. Everyone. I want to go... to where everyone is..."
"That's why... I've decided to invite you there."
"I'm the Game Master now. Only those who know everything about the game board can open it up and invite pieces in. So, I'll invite you to come to the game board."
"You'll... take me to Rokkenjima... on that day..."
"That's right. I'll invite you to the Rokkenjima of 1986."
"Will I be able to see everyone...?"
"Of course."
"Even though... my memory is vague, and I can't remember anyone's faces clearly..."
"You'll remember soon enough. And, though it'll be a reunion after 12 years for you, it'll only have been a short gap for the rest of us. Everyone will welcome you. When you finally return from the distant future, everyone will welcome you."
"Will I... be able to stay there forever...?"

This way, I'll be able to be with everyone forever. This is the goal I'm supposed to reach...

"Ange, listen to me carefully."

But Battler spoke in an admonishing tone. As though warning me that this dream would not be granted...

"The Rokkenjima family conference usually ends after a single night. Because of the typhoon that day, the boat couldn't come, and it lasted two nights."
"So, when the typhoon passes, I'll have to leave the island again...?"
"...Not exactly. The decision is yours, Ange."
"You have to decide that yourself."

I don't exist on that island on that day. It's a miracle just to be invited there like this. Just the two days before the typhoon passes. Just getting those two days to myself is already the sort of miracle that will never come again. If I'm greedy enough to ask for more, that faint miracle might vanish. Even though I thought this, my young heart, which was still six years old, wasn't satisfied with that short-lived miracle...

"I don't want to leave."
"...I know."
"I'll be with everyone forever. I'll stay with my family. Even if you tell me I have to head back, I'll stay on Rokkenjima."
"You can stay or you can leave, but it's not as though one of those is 'the right choice'. That's not how it is, Ange."
"...Even so, you'll let me choose...?"
"Yes. That's what the key is for."

Battler touched the glittering key that hung from Ange's neck.

"You don't have to decide now. The time to choose will come soon. When it does, you must use your honest heart to choose how you'll use that key."
"You don't need to listen to anything I tell you. You're free to decide however you like. However, if you're a good kid, and if you can trust your big brother..."
"...If I can...?"
"Then believe everything I tell you."
"I'll... believe you..."
"That will lead to the best choice for you. Listen to my words and believe everything I say. Can you do that?"
"...I don't know."
"That's good enough. Just believe whatever you want to. That's also for you to decide."
"...If I don't believe you, will I wake up from this dream...?"
"That won't happen. So don't worry."

Her wish was to remain on that island on that day, together with her family, forever. She was afraid that, once she got her two miraculous days and accepted them, her brother might tell her to return to 12 years in the future all alone.

"I already told you. There is no right decision. You can go, or you can stay. That's for you to decide. And you don't need to make your decision right now."
"And no one will force me to make either choice...?"
"Of course."
"You won't tell me... to go back to the future...?"
"...There is a choice that I want you to choose. I want you to reach that decision by yourself. So, though I hope you make a certain choice, I will respect your decision."
"And I've already told you. I've already made my choice."
"And I told you. Now isn't the time to choose."
"When will it be time?"
"The key will tell you."

The large, gold key hung from Ange's neck. Her small hand held it tightly...

The book had a lock on it, and was sealed so that it could not be read without a key. Ange looked between the key hanging at her chest and the book on the altar.

"...Will this key unlock that book?"

BGM: L&D Circulation

His sudden, forceful response made Ange flinch. Battler, realizing he had scared Ange, softened his expression.

"Come on, let's go. I'm inviting you to come back to October 4th, 1986."

Battler held out his hand, and Ange gripped it tightly. Then, they started walking.

That blinding light peeked in through the cracks around the door. The brother and sister began to walk through to the other side...

Video: Last Opening