Volume 5, Chapter 13: What I Wanted to Say, Part 2
“What’s making all that noise?”
I came to the shopping district ramen shop again today.
If you’re eating ramen all the time like this, you would get fat, so Kotone-chan, who noticed that number on the scale for her was terrifying, decided that today she would be swimming at the gym instead of coming.
“Erm, well, it seems that there’s some roadwork?”
To my mutter, Misa, who was doing homework with me, raised her head to tell me.
“Is there a lot in the works this time?”
“Well, I don’t know.”
When I looked outside from the window of the restroom instead of the inside of the store, I could hear some sounds but I couldn’t see where they were coming from.
“Just how many places are they working……?”
The roadwork itself weren’t unusual, but was it being done all over the shopping area?
Since it’s a school holiday tomorrow, it’s not a problem even if Kotone-chan comes to pick me up, but I wonder if the car can even enter?
Well, it can’t be helped; I guess I’ll have to stay at the shop.
Now that I think on it, the backroom and the second floor of this ramen shop is grandpa shopkeeper’s house, and Misa and Dad-chan are lodging on the second floor.
“Yuzu-chan, you should stay over~.”
“What should I do?”
“Well, let’s sleep together in the futon.
We’re sharing a bed. Yeah, that’s nice, isn’t it… When I started to drift off into my own thoughts, Dad-chan came from the shop to the restroom with his cellphone.
“Yuzu-chan, there was a phone call from Ooba-kun, but since there were so many roads that were blocked due to construction work today, he might be late, so please make your way back by taxi before it’s too late.”
“And Yuzu-chan, did your phone’s battery run out? I heard that Ooba-kun couldn’t reach you.”
I took out my mobile phone from my bag, and indeed, it really was off.
When I pressed and held down the power button, it turned on, but after a couple of seconds, I saw the picture of an empty battery on the screen.
“A dead battery, huh……”
You can use our shop’s phone, so stay in contact. Would you like to call a taxi?”
“Yuzu-chan, you’re not going to stay over……?”
Misa looked sad when she heard.
“……Dad-chan, is it no good for me to stay?”
“That’s not what I mean. And I’m not Misa’s father! Recently Misa has been imitating you and calling me [Dad-chan], so the rest of the people in the shopping district are also starting to call me [Dad] these days!”
“It was an accident……?”
“It obviously wasn’t an accident!?”
As expected, the straight riposte from Dad-chan is strong.
After that, I called Ooba-onii-chan and then asked Dad-chan to call me a taxi.
Ah, I wish I’d charged my mobile phone before the taxi had come…… I managed to charge it for one minute just before the taxi arrived.
It was around nine when I boarded the taxi and the ramen shop was closed.
It was quite late. It took me well over an hour to get a cab. At this rate, it might really be better to just stay over.
“I’m sorry, Miss. Because there was so much construction work ongoing, there were only a few roads that I could use.”
“Is that so?”
Because the young driver with a well-built physique was talking to me, I answered properly, and went with the flow.
If I can’t even handle small talk, I don’t think I can ever become a full member of society. I am an elementary school student.
“Miss’s uniform, are you from the Takamine school?”
“Yes, that’s right. You know of it?”
“Well, it’s the best school in this area. With that kind of school tuition, I think it’s impossible for my children to attend.”
“There aren’t many of them, but there are children from ordinary families, you know?”
“Haha, those children are clearly treasured by their parents. If I had a cute little girl like you, dad would have liked her to go to Takamine, too.”
Does Dad know Driver-san? No, it’s not a taxi company that’s often around here? Come to think of it, I haven’t seen any such company, either.
Anyway, this driver, seems rather talkative……
“When I got on the taxi, didn’t your dad come to see you off? What a pleasant parent-child relationship.”
Did he think that Dad-chan and I were parent and child? …… It’s strange putting it into words.
People who come by the shopping district often would know that I call him [Dad-chan], but when did this driver hear of it?
Even though he was from the taxi company that was used by the shop, he didn’t seem acquainted with dad-chan.
And even though he’s a taxi driver, he doesn’t seem to know where I’m going…
The conversation got interrupted as I stayed silent.
The driver seemed to be trying to get “something” out of me. No…… It seems that he wanted “confirmation”?
“…… Mr. driver, isn’t this the wrong way?”
“…… My apologies, but there are many roads that aren’t accessible thanks to the road construction.”
This might be bad…… I’m not one to panic in such a situation, generally, but it’s quite the distance between being afraid of the danger and being at ease.
That strange [power] doesn’t always come out according to the situation. Since it comes out only when I tried to protect someone, I still don’t know for sure if I’m in danger.
Besides, this construction work itself is also suspicious.
“I wish to get off here. Please stop the car.”
“…… I can’t do that. It’s only a little more until we get onto the highway.”
Although it could take up to 20 minutes by car to get to the ramen shop from the Toukaki estate, there’s no need at all to use the expressway.
Ah, this is bad. Even if it wasn’t a kidnapper or some devious criminal, there’s no doubt at all that this is one of those corrupt taxis.
“If you don’t stop…… I’ll get violent?”
“Heeh…… why not try?”
The driver dropped his veneer of goodness, and his voice dripped with condescension. It’s a guilty confession.
“……Then, I won’t hesitate. *pusu*”
Without a single ounce of restraint, I stabbed a sharp pencil into the base of the driver’s skull.
He howled. But, because I was weak, it only stabbed in about a centimeter. I pulled out the tip of the pencil, and rolled myself under the seat.
The fake driver made a sound like he was spitting out air, and the car came to a sudden stop. Thinking about it properly, it would’ve been dangerous if he’d collided with an oncoming car. But it’s too late by far now.
“……You… you cheeky brat”
“Oh my, you survived?”
While he bled profusely from his forehead and neck, he stretched out his hand to grab me, but I gave an elegant smile, and left the car from the back seat.
Bag: ok, wallet: ok, uniform: a little wrinkled, and the mobile phone was charged to 3% or less. I’m all set.
“But… where is this place……?”
Apparently, it seems to be a street lined with office buildings. There seems to be a lot of places without power because of the hour of the day.
Let’s search for a police box for the time being. Even though I can’t see it, I think there’s a convenience store somewhere.
That [Black Cat] was in the alley of the office town……
Those silver eyes stared straight at me. Did you want to say something……? What did you want to tell me? What on earth are you……
As I approached it, it ran away. Even as I stopped, it ran further away. …… But, you were the one to appear before me.
“Something” was scratching with its claws in the depths of my heart and mind.
It urged me to follow [Him] as he ran away.
I’m out of breath. It’s natural, since I have no stamina. But I could still move more? And I was faster? And… stronger?
The fractured memories that my daily life had painted over, slowly regained their color.
You…… what did you want of me?
“You brat, I’ve found you!”
Where…… was I? I was in something that looked like a vacant lot when I recovered my consciousness, and from behind me, while holding the back of his neck with a cloth that was dyed with spots of red, was the fake driver, looking at me angrily.
“……oh my, you seem energetic.”
“Stop playing the fool.”
Beside the fake driver, there were also some other ill-bred ruffians.
At my words, the fake driver clenched his fists and came at me. Will it hit?
“Cease your actions, Shimabara.”
A calm voice came from behind him, and the fake driver Shimabara stiffened, and stopped.
Two black-suited men came from the right of the car. A slender man walked in the middle of them.
Surely, meeting like this in this place……
“Long time no see, Miss.”
Said the man calmly, with a snake-like smile. The very man who I met in that shopping district.
… To lead me to such a place, you, what did you want from me.
The serious tone will continue a little more.
The volume enters its climax.
Next time, what will Yuzu who got exposed to malice do?
Going to be honest here, the pencil took me off guard. Didn’t expect Yuzu to channel John Wick this week.
Things are heating up, what everyone’s been waiting for is coming up!
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