Part 32: Wonderful Utopia
BGM: Moonlit Night
"Y... Yes... I mean, was it that strange...?"
Since Jessica's cheeks had been stuffed with chocolate-coated chinsukou biscuit that Shannon had brought as a present from Okinawa, it all flew out at Shannon when Jessica cried out...
"...Sh, Shannon, why did you even go on a trip up to Okinawa...? And even alone with George nii-san!"
"That is, I mean... since there's a very big aquarium in Okinawa, I was invited to go and... I... like fish and stuff..."
"No, that's not it!! This is a young couple going on an overnight trip, right?! And you're saying there weren't even any hugs and kisses?! To say nothing of the fact that the guy and girl were staying in different rooms!!"
"As for k, kisses, no comment. Ah, but we did hug... George-san's chest was warm..."
"That's not the point!! Aah, geez! Why do couples like this exist?! Aaah, geez!! It's so irritating!"
For a while, Jessica chewed on her present, complaining about romance and pretending to faint in agony on her bed. Shannon and George had chosen to go to Okinawa because there was a huge aquarium there. And they had used the aquarium as an excuse to get together. Since their relationship had started at an aquarium, having their first overnight trip also be to an aquarium must have held some commemorative value.
"What a turning point! It was your first overnight trip!! Shouldn't there have been lots of progress?! And even so, separate rooms for the guy and girl?! A couple taking two single rooms?! Aah, geez, really, what's wrong with you!"
"...Err, umm... but we're both single... George-san says showing restraint is good manners for a couple..."
"Like I said, this overnight trip was so you could overcome that stage, right?! You're already at the level of things like kissing and hugging, right?!"
"M, Milady, I don't know what you mean by that... G, George-sama was a real gentleman with me until the end. That is, I mean... I also... wondered if those things would happen, you know... but we, even though we are going out, I mean, it, it's not that we are married or anything..."
"What Milady seems to be expecting, ...I mean, we must do so only after we properly make a vow in front of God, umm... w w, we must... au."
Shannon's face got bright red. She made a circle with both hands, restlessly intertwining, separating and making heart marks with them.
Apparently, the dramatic progress Jessica had looked forward to hadn't happened, but it seemed that it had been a very important experience for Shannon in her own way. So in the end, whether Jessica was jealous of Shannon or cheered for her, it didn't change the fact that Shannon had a huge lead on her.
"Aah, I want a boyfriend toooo!! I can't believe Shannon got ahead of me!! Even though we promised that we would find boyfriends at the same time, you beat me, Aarrrrrrgh!"
"U, umm... Milady is a wonderful person, so I'm sure a wonderful person will appear very soon..."
"Don't try to console me!! Shannon, you traitor, get o-ut, shut u-p! *cough*cough*, *cough*cough*cough*!!"
Jessica threw several cushions at her. But midway, she had an asthma attack and started to choke pretty badly. Shannon hurriedly ran over to a nearby side table and started searching around on top of it. A lovely basket was placed there and inside of it was Jessica's bronchodilator. Shannon picked it up and handed it over to Jessica.
Jessica's asthma attacks always came suddenly. Because of this, she always carried this medicine around. She breathed in the medicine and, after a while, managed to overcome her choking as her asthma finally settled down. Shannon thought this a good chance to leave and tried to exit the room after bowing courteously...
As she did, one more small cushion came flying and hit Shannon on the head.
BGM: Steady Pace
"... M, Milady...?"
"Sha... Shannon... Be honest with me... Is my... hairdo and stuff... strange...?"
"What are you saying... I think that your hair is very beautiful."
"Then... then, then, are my eyes strange, or maybe my nose? Or is it the way I talk after all...? Is that why I can't get a boyfriend...?"
"Of course not. Milady, you are wonderful enough as you are. And I think that your charm will keep on increasing more and more from now on."
"I was so sure I'd have a boyfriend before that day and said it so impressivly...I can't find a boyfriend. Only me, only me..."
Before she realized it, Jessica was shedding huge tears. Jessica didn't really feel like crying, and of course, she felt like supporting Shannon's progress in love as a friend. However, as she had cheered Shannon on, her true feelings had suddenly gotten mixed in, and she couldn't help but shed tears...
...Shannon understood Jessica's innocent and easily injured heart. Jessica's ordinary rough style of speech, was all just an attempt to protect her own easily injured heart. As a daughter and successor to the Ushiromiya family, and as a girl isolated on Rokkenjima, the only person she could expose her true feelings to was Shannon. Shannon understood that. So, she strongly regretted getting into even a slightly good mood.
"...S, sorry... Crying like this, I'm, weird. Sorry... *sniffle*."
"You are a wonderful person, Milady. There is no way that a wonderful man won't appear for you, Milady..."
"...Sh, Shannon, it's about time, right? If you don't go quickly, Genji-san and Mom will get mad. I'm perfectly fine, so go quickly...! Heheh, sorry for crying like this. I'm such a moron."
Jessica faced away, acting as though she didn't really want to trouble Shannon, waving her hand as though driving Shannon away. Shannon took that as a sign that anything more would be obnoxious, bowed her head, and left the room...
When her footsteps disappeared into the distance, Jessica lay down on her bed, still hugging a cushion. Her expression was still a little meek, with tears in her eyes, but for the first time in a long time, she had a very, very quiet and honest conversation with her heart.
She turned around, thinking that if this was one of the family coming to see her, she must greet them, and what she saw was that witch.
As Beatrice sat on the rose arch, she happily blew on her pipe. Sitting in a place like that would get you pricked by the roses, and it might have been dangerous if you fell off the arch... but after all, this was a witch. That would surely be worrying too much.
"...Y, yes. Thanks to you, it's going smoothly."
"Naturally, my magic is instantaneous. Maybe you feel that your meeting was a predetermined fate. But that isn't correct, don't think this has anything to do with fate."
"...I... I understand that."
The witch was calling attention to something. Two things, actually. Originally, her relationship with George had been completely impossible... And the power of magic was so great that it could distort that. Shannon had just gotten wrapped up in those sweet days, and had started believing the illusion that all fate revolved around her.
...But she remembered the witch's words. Originally, her relationship with George had been impossible... no, it might also be impossible in the future as well...
"*cackle*cackle*, sorry, sorry. It's just like a doctor. Even though you rely on them when you worry about your health, after you're healed, you forget even to thank them. I've never been thanked as a witch, so I couldn't help acting a little rudely. Forgive me."
"...I have never forgotten my feelings of gratitude. I was able to achieve happiness thanks to your power, Beatrice-sama. And without that power, the fate that brought me and George-sama together wouldn't have happened. I have never forgotten that."
"Sorry, sorry. It's not like I came here to bully you. Talking rudely is just my personality. Do forgive me. More importantly, I heard, I heard! About your trip alone with him. I'm sure it was quite fun."
"Y, yes! It was very, umm, fun."
Shannon's face suddenly grew bright. The witch laughed lightly, as though that transformation was worth money.
Beatrice laughed pleasantly. That smile made her look as though she blessed the lovers' rendezvous from the bottom of her heart, without a trace of malice.
After that day, Beatrice had shown herself before Shannon every once in a while. Even now, Shannon still thought of her as a creepy being. However, she was also indebted to this person for bestowing the magic that had given her the relationship she had with George. So Shannon tried with all her might not to be surprised or scared.
"Th... that's right. Umm, Beatrice-sama. I bought some sweets as a souvenir from our trip. Would you, umm... like some?"
"Hoh??? A souvenir for a witch...?"
It seemed that even a witch who boasted of living for one thousand years hadn't been able to predict that she would receive a souvenir from a pair of sweet lovers. When she saw that surprised expression, Shannon thought of the witch as a friend for the first time.
"...What? What's so funny?"
"N, nothing. My apologies."
This witch, who surely held a terrifying power, was chomping down on sweets one after another, making a sound like a squirrel stuffing walnuts into its mouth. After a while, Shannon couldn't conceal her laughter.
"Hmmm, a good meal. I should serve you some Dolce Vita from Nero one of these days. Roses are the symbol of eternal love. I believe a rose dolce would be appropriate for you now."
The witch was in a great mood, fully enjoying modern candy.
"Umm... here. I truly wish to thank you so much. I believe you have done more than enough for me already, so I'm returning this."
"There is no need to return it. If you continue holding that, your relationship should remain firm in perpetuity."
"...Maybe I was given a chance to meet him by the power of magic. But I think the effort that will make that meeting eternal will come from the two of us cooperating together."
"Hmmm. Love and roses are the same. Too much fertilizer causes the roots to rot. Some flowers cannot be raised without hard work. In that case, do as you wish. You may wear it or keep it in a box. That is my good will, given to you. It would not please me if you were to return it to me."
"Ah... m, my apologies...! That's not what I..."
"*cackle*cackle*. No harm has been done. That brooch is already yours. If you treasure that proof of our friendship, that would comfort me a bit."
"You may hold on to it, and gain its benefits. You may also keep it in a box. If you wish, it is up to you whether you give it to another who is worrying about love. But you should regard it as important. Of course, it would pain my heart if you wasted it."
According what Beatrice said, several times in the distant past, she had been called by people and given them an tool imbued with some kind of magic power. However, when most people used that power to resolve their worries, they quickly came to think of that power as creepy, and, forgetting their feelings of thanks, they threw the tools they had been given away with disgust.
"So I haven't often received thanks for my good will. Let's see, is this the first time? *cackle*cackle* *cackle*cackle*."
She herself had been like that in the past... no, maybe she was still like that now. Beatrice was definitely a witch, with a strange and terrifying power. Most likely, no one would go along with her if they could help it. Surely, even though they had relied on that strange power, people sometimes felt fear rather than gratitude as a result. It must have deeply hurt the witch when that repeated over and over.
Since the time she had started thinking that way, Shannon had tried to stop being frightened of Beatrice. That was surely what had tormented her for longer than one thousand years...
Maybe she really liked the sweets. Beatrice, who normally spoke abusively, praised the black tea that Shannon served her, and looked to be in remarkably high spirits. After doing that for a while, the witch and the servant grew animated talking about the trip with George.
First off, she was a ghost-like being who appeared in unexpected places at unexpected times. And it seemed that not everyone could perceive that she was there. It seemed that each person had something called a wavelength, and that the ability to perceive it varied greatly among different people. Only Shannon and Kanon could interact with her enough to exchange words like this. There were a few people who could sense her presence, but most people couldn't even feel that much. From what Beatrice said, Krauss and his wife in particular had zero magical talent. And no matter how much she followed them around, they would never notice her. Previously, when Shannon had messed up and Natsuhi had gotten really mad at her, Beatrice had started playing around, hitting Natsuhi on the head with her pipe. Indeed, Natsuhi really hadn't noticed at all.
But Shannon, watching that, had burst out laughing without thinking, and had gotten scolded even more.
"...Kinzo is the same. There is no one with a more pitiful lack of magical talent. It's the blood. He has so little talent that I feel sorry for him."
As soon as they started talking about Kinzo, it felt like the atmosphere around Beatrice changed. She had spoken about Krauss and the rests' lack of magic talent as though she looked down on them, but she spoke of Kinzo in a different way. Anyone connected to the Ushiromiya family would know about Kinzo's Legend of the Gold. According to that, Kinzo had summoned the witch Beatrice, and had been given the gold. In other words, that meant that she had some kind of relationship with Kinzo.
"That was because... even though he didn't have a scrap of talent, he succeeded. He kept studying by himself like mad, and reached the level of magician."
"That's... something really incredible, right...?"
The witch, who usually looked down on people, was unexpectedly praising someone. While she lambasted him, saying that he had no talent, she praised Kinzo's efforts.
"And then, the Master summoned Beatrice-sama with the power of magic..."
"Hmm. Well, I only answered the summons on a whim. In this period where magic has long been denied, those without a scrap of talent give it their all. It was just my luck that I'd decide to come and laugh at him. *cackle*cackle*cackle*."
BGM: Worldend (solo)
Shannon hesitated over whether it would be alright to continue this discussion, but Beatrice continued on her own, ignoring Shannon.
"Then the Master... used that gold and succeeded in business, and grew his wealth into what it is today."
"Hmm. His talent in magic was nothing, but it seems he had talent in business and gambling. Or was it because of his bravery and madness to bet everything on unreasonable bets. Madness sometimes brings about magic. I see, if you look at it that way, maybe I can't really say that Kinzo had absolutely no magical talent. *cackle*cackle*"
While everyone in the Ushiomiya family knew of the story regarding how Kinzo had idolized black magic, summoned a witch, and been given gold, in actuality, it was all rambling that no one believed in. And now that she was hearing that it was true from the witch herself... Shannon felt a little flustered at this insane secret that only she knew.
"Then Kinzo, who had obtained a vast fortune, could completely obtain every dream one can satisfy with objects they can obtain in the human world. And in the end, he searched for the truth of the world."
"The truth... of the world?"
"...The single element that makes up the world. Kinzo, who had achieved everything one can obtain in the human world, wanted that, the final desire humans seek."
The single element. She felt like she had heard the witch say that word before. When Beatrice saw Shannon trying to remember what that was, she laughed bitterly, waving her hand and saying there was no need to remember.
"...I underestimated Kinzo a little. I truly hadn't thought that he would display such power."
"...And thanks to that, I'm in this state. I've been sewn in place on this island for several decades now, without even a friend to drink tea with. No matter who I try to talk to, my voice doesn't reach them, and no matter where I go, I cannot do anything. Such boring decades."
As she laughed in self-derision, she tapped her teacup with her finger. It made the transparent sound of pottery. Shannon didn't know whether the word 'self-derision' was really an accurate expression to describe the look on the witch's face.
Shannon didn't understand everything, but she could more or less figure out the situation. And it was probably a topic that she could not press the witch on easily, unless the witch started talking about it herself. To sum up everything she had said up until now...
During that time, her words had reached Shannon, who never forgot to strongly respect the witch. And she had helped the witch to regain her power, if only a little bit.
...As a result, she had become able to drink tea with Shannon like this...
"...Beatrice-sama, what in the world was that mirror you told me to break?"
"Aaah, that story. Long ago, it seems various things happened on the islands around this area. Because of that, bad things gathered, drawn towards an evil distortion. It seems that a traveling eastern magician or something built a shrine for the repose of souls and sealed them in there."
"...That in itself had nothing to do with me, but unfortunately the foundation of that magical power was different. It created a strong interference with my magical power, and was extremely bothersome."
"Is that how it was...? And I just assumed that it sealed you, Beatrice-sama..."
"I was not its target. But it was a divine mirror. As a result, my power was sealed away. If you were to use food as an example, maybe it would go something like this. Let's say that the western-style food I ordered is being made in the kitchen. However, when they try to set the table, the area for the guest seating is in the Japanese style with Japanese style dishes. So the kitchen is unable to take out a plate which would be out of place, and no matter how long I wait, my western-style food won't arrive... something like that."
"So you destroyed that Japanese-style guest seating, and returned the area to a blank slate for a time. Thanks to that, the meal I had ordered was finally delivered, and my power came back, you could say. However, so far, only the aperitif has arrived. It will still be quite some time before the main dish. As I am now, I'm even more faint than a fairy in a shoe store."
BGM: Doorway of Summer
"Mu. What is so funny?"
"Nothing... I thought the witch's example was so interesting. I never thought you could use a story about food as an analogy for a story about magic."
"I had planned that to be a skillful expression, if I do say so myself, but I was sure it wouldn't be laughed at. It's a little unexpected."
A slightly sulky expression rose to the witch's face. It wasn't a strange expression at all to be appearing on the face of some friends as they enjoyed their tea.
"...Although I may not look it, I was known for doing extremely brutal things in the past. I've gotten soft. Now I can even have a foolish discussion while drinking tea with a human."
She was probably talking to herself. As Beatrice gazed at the sea birds tracing the horizon, she put her tea to her lips again.
"You think so? I think the ocean is a beautiful deep blue, even if it gets cloudy."
Maybe the witch noticed the deep meaning behind Shannon's words. She laughed lightly and set down her empty teacup.
"...It seems that those things buried in your eyes aren't black pebbles anymore. How is it? Do you understand the feeling of furniture being reborn as a human?"
"...Yes. I did not know that the world was this kind."
Since her relationship with George had begun, Shannon's face had grown brighter more often. Her smile had made everything go smoothly, and had even changed her luck. Shannon made less mistakes in her work than she had before, and the family members' opinion of her was starting to change slightly. Just the other day, Krauss, who rarely exchanged words with her, had suddenly started talking to her, surprising her.
"N, no... But, ...every day is fun, yes."
"Hmph. Isn't that a good thing? Coffee is obviously more delicious if it's poured with a smile. Could I ask for that smile again?"
That had become a chance for Shannon to gain confidence in herself. Of course, it didn't go beyond her own heart, and it wasn't so big a change that anyone would notice. But she had begun to change, bit by bit.
Shannon understood it clearly. Knowing love was the same as gaining a soul... And therefore she was born again from furniture to a human. There was absolutely nothing wrong with Beatrice's words. By knowing love, Shannon had learned what it was to be human.
"...After all, someone doesn't like it when you drink tea with me, right?"
The witch gripped a teaspoon and flipped it with her fingers, sending it up in the air. After that, was launched by the fingers of some invisible person in empty space, and flew straight at a bush close nearby.
The bush moved violently, and Kanon came out. It seemed that he had been there for some time, and had been watching their tea party. The spoon was gripped in his hand. If he hadn't caught it in an instant, it might have hit him hard in the forehead and caused him to start oozing blood.
"Do not worry. Our tea party is over now, Kanon."
"How long were you there? If you had called to us, I'd have poured you some tea too..."
"I imagine that you didn't want to interrupt a pair of women talking, right? *cackle*cackle*!"
Kanon kept silent, but it seemed that there was a slightly hostile look in his eyes. On the outside, he acted respectfully. But unlike Shannon, Kanon did not trust the witch.
When Beatrice hit the table with her pipe, the tea set turned into gold butterflies, which flew upwards as one. They then scattered in every direction, and the cleanup was already done.
"It was fun, Shannon. Let us meet again if the chance arises. My magical power is still quite lacking. It's tiring even to show myself."
"...If you're that tired, never appear again."
Kanon had said it in a small voice, but it seemed the witch had heard it perfectly. She giggled, but did not reply.
"Shannon. Tell me more about George at our next tea party. There are no snacks sweeter than a person's love life. *cackle*cackle*cackle*. See you again."
Beatrice's body also became gold butterflies, which scattered in all directions and disappeared. It was a very fantastical and beautiful scene, like a blizzard of gold leaf. For a while, Shannon quietly watched the witch's exit...
Kanon approached her from behind, and spoke with a very different expression on his face than his sister's.
BGM: White Shadow
"Beatrice-sama isn't that bad of a person. Yes, she might be a little strange, but-"
"The fact that only we can see her is suspicious enough... That person isn't human. There's no way we could understand what she's planning."
"Kanon-kun, I think that's a little rude."
Shannon spoke seriously, which was unusual for her. To Kanon, who knew her well, it must have seemed extremely serious. Kanon was excessively surprised at Shannon's style of speech, and remained silent.
"It's true that Beatrice-sama is different from humans. She has a terrifying power, so I think she is to be feared and respected. But just because she's different from a human, doesn't mean that it isn't really rude to loathe her like that."
"...I understand what you're trying to say, Nee-san. You've changed since she gave you that brooch. It's like you're the witch's prisoner. She mediated your relationship with George-sama, and now you're indebted to her."
"...Don't say stuff like that."
"That person isn't human. We don't know what she's thinking. You mustn't trust her. And we aren't humans either, Nee-san."
Kanon's words became more serious. Those words probably gouged at Shannon's heart. Shannon bit her lower lip and hung her head.
"We are furniture. Even if we receive names and are treated as humans, that won't change how we were born."
Those words Beatrice had given her, which had made her happiest, floated through Shannon's mind...
"I am not... furniture."
"No, you are furniture. We are less than human. Nee-san, you're acting like you've forgotten that, and you're just pretending to be human. You should understand that yourself."
"I... am not furniture. I'm human...!"
"No, you aren't human. From the beginning, we have been unqualified to love or be loved."
It seemed that Kanon's criticism had shifted in focus ever since Shannon had suddenly started meeting with the witch. Shannon also noticed that quickly.
"I heard from Milady. You honestly, fell in love. I can't believe that you would go on a trip with George-sama...! You've forgotten your place as furniture. You've just been tempted by that witch, and mistakenly believe that you became human!"
"Listen, Kanon-kun. We certainly are furniture. Lesser beings, inferior to humans. But if we could replace that unfulfilled part... wouldn't that mean that we could become human?"
"...That couldn't happen."
"No, it could. If we can gain that, we won't be furniture. We can become human."
"...Ridiculous. ...As if you could."
Kanon spat that out, but he said it weakly, and turned away. He was probably giving up. After being baptized as furniture in his days of suffering, his heart was firmly sealed...
"...You can too, Kanon-kun. You can become a normal human."
"...Stop it, that's the witch talking."
"Yes. Beatrice-sama taught me. By gaining the single element of the world, we can become human. No, nobody's human if that isn't satisfied. So people spend their entire lives trying to gain that single element."
"I don't understand what you're saying, Nee-san. I don't want to listen to ranting."
"Then I'll teach it so even you can understand. Look, see what I'm pointing at?"
Kanon didn't understand what she was actually pointing at, and couldn't do anything except look between the horizon and Shannon's expression, which looked like it was posing a riddle.
"The sea. Kanon-kun, what color does the sea look to you?"
It was a really simple question. Kanon tried to guess the meaning behind that question for a while, but since he couldn't think of anything, he obeyed and answered.
"...It's a vague, dark-gray color. So what?"
Objectively speaking, the sea, laid out beneath a cloudy sky, could probably be described best by Kanon's words. But as Shannon closed her eyes and smiled, she shook her head slightly.
"It looks deep blue to me."
"No. The sea is deep blue. If I understand, and you do not, that's what it means..."
Kanon bit his lower lip and was silent for a while.
"...I... don't understand."
"Kanon-kun. Would you stick out your hand?"
As Kanon was taken aback, unable to understand what she was saying, she took his arm, and opened the palm of his hand. Shannon softly set something there.
"This is... hers...?"
"No, this is mine. So think of it as me and treat it with respect, okay?"
After being spoken to like that, he couldn't just throw it away. Kanon didn't know what he should do, and he stood there confused for a while, the brooch still on the palm of his hand. Shannon put the palm of her hand on top of Kanon's, and the brooch was warmed by both of their hands.
"This charm holds true magical power. I'm sure that it will teach you an important emotion, Kanon-kun."
"...Nothing can be taught from that person's magic."
"No, something can. So wear it. If that's embarrassing, I hear it's okay if you just hide it in your pocket."
"...Ridiculous... As if I'd be led astray by that person's magic."
Even as he said that, Kanon couldn't be cold-hearted towards something Shannon was pressing on him. In the end, Kanon took it and agreed reluctantly, as though saying he would prove that he wouldn't surrender to the witch's power. Shannon smiled and nodded back.
"I'm sure you can learn something important from it... And I'm sure you can become human. And when you do, I'm sure that this ocean will look like a beautiful blue to you as well, Kanon-kun."
"...Gray is gray no matter how many times I look."
Because of the howling wind, he hadn't been able to catch the main point of what she'd just said. So Shannon said it once more.
The single element of the world. She spoke once more of the world where that was satisfied, where the sea was deep blue.
"I'm sure you'll be able to see a deep blue ocean. After all-"
"...It is Kanon, Master."
It was rare for Kinzo to leave his study. However, that in itself didn't mean his noble research had been suspended. He may have left the study because of a change in mood, but that didn't mean that the thoughts filling his head were any different from those he had had inside the study. So Kanon knew that no matter what the time, speaking to Kinzo when he didn't want to be spoken to would always be a disturbance in his research.
"The weather is heavy. Will it get worse?"
"Yes. According to the weather report, it could rain at any time. Shall I bring an umbrella?"
"It will not come to that. You should leave me alone for a while. If my children ask, say that you do not know where I am. I am busy on a journey through my own thoughts."
"...Certainly. Then, if you would excuse me."
During the time that Kanon bowed to him, Kinzo had already returned to his own world, and had forgotten that Kanon was there. And once again, he began rambling to himself. Amidst those words, the name of that witch was repeated many times.
"Ooohhh, Beatrice, what can I do to see your face one more time...? Ooooooooohhhhhhh..."
As Kanon listened to his master's weeping voice with his back turned, he turned around just once. When he did, right behind his isolated, old master... was the shadow of a person that shouldn't have been there.
At once, Kanon, thinking that the witch must be plotting to do Kinzo some harm, quickly ran back to Kinzo, trying to become a shield himself. But when he saw the expression on the witch's face, that emotion of his vanished. Because, Beatrice's expression was... sorrowful, or maybe pitying.
"You fool, Kinzo... Can't you see me, even though I am here?"
Right behind Kinzo, as he repeated the witch's name over and over, desiring to be reunited with her more than anything else, was the witch herself. And yet, Kinzo didn't notice anything. When Beatrice tried to rest her hand on his shoulder, he didn't notice anything.
"...Why, why does my hand not reach Beatrice's smile?! Is it the age of the moon, the cycle of the comets, the alignment of the planets?! What is lacking, what is, what is?!!"
"...It's useless, Kinzo. ...Without love, it cannot be seen."
Kanon took the brooch he had received from Shannon out of his pocket. Would he also be able see something that couldn't be seen now, by learning something?
He looked at Kinzo's back once more.
The witch could no longer be seen there.