Really hectic day so this is really late. This is pretty much speed edited and I’ll get to it tomorrow when I have time.
Oh well. This is the last chapter of Vol. 1 so I will be slowing down a bit as school starts to pick up. Maybe one or two chapters a week, who knows.
Side Note: I finally did that Character Page thing. It’s pretty much for people who have a hard time following the dialog. Check out the “Speech Pattern” for each character if you need help with that.
Volume 1: New Game+
Chapter 9: Edgar and Aran
More than usual, Ran felt that going to school was annoying.
The reason for that, was of course because he wound up using「Moon Step」last night when they were playing Dragon’s Krone. Andou and the others will likely come at him with a barrage of questions as a result.
In the end, it was 10 pm by the time they finished the Grand Mission.
After defeating the PKers, Edgar and the rest of his party resumed hunting down Mobs, but the quest was over before they could even reach the Boss Mob. The end result: Their team was 3rd place out of 4.
The PKers that Edgar defeated were part of the 4th place team. Although he couldn’t tell which team was the other Colluding party, once Edgar looked at the event points gained from dealing damage to the Boss Mob, he saw that there was a tight race in terms of points for 1st place and 2nd place team. Because of that he figured that the Colluding Party’s plan didn’t work out too well.
With their plans foiled, Suzu had reported the 2 PKers and the rest of their party to the administrators. Because of that they will probably be punished in the near future.
Incidentally, the reward for 3rd place was a measly amount of in-game currency. It goes without saying that Megu’s rage flared up to the next level.
Once the Grand Mission was over, Edgar was expecting Andou and Yamabuki to receive their「Punishment」and then for everyone to ask him about Moon Step, but that ended up being a needless worry.
First off, Megu, who didn’t have permission from her family to be playing Dragon’s Krone late into the night, quickly logged out while simply saying「We’ll help Edgar level up tomorrow, kay」. Next was Suzu who also said with a smile「See you tomorrow at school」and logged out of Dragon’s Krone.
Lastly, having luckily escaped their punishment, Andou and Yamabuki feared that the Terrifying Demon (Megu) might suddenly remember and log back on so they hastily said a few parting words and promptly logged out as well. And so, only a few minutes after having completed the Grand Mission, the only one left standing in the port city of Crescendo── was Edgar.
In other words, without even getting a chance to explain about the Moon Step, the party suddenly disbanded. Thus this was the start of Edgar’s internal turmoil as he could only imagine what will happen the next day.
In front of the Kasumigaoka High-School’s front gate, the clear air shook. Abruptly calling out from behind was a panicked voice. Hearing his name, Ran reflexively froze up.
The person calling out to him, was one of the people from last night, someone who was with him in that other world. It was Andou.
「About yesterday, thanks for that. Also one more thing, I have a bit of a favor to ask of you……」
Andou looked deeply troubled, and his expression seemed like he was hesitant to say something.
Seeing him like that, Ran had a general idea of what he wanted to say.
「……Perhaps, is it about Sasaki-san?」
「You’re pretty sharp huh. Yea, exactly that, can you tell Megu-san with your own words,『Andou has reflected on his actions so go easy on him』, can you do that for me?」
“I’m begging you,” Andou brought his hands together as he prayed for help. Ran let out a small sigh.
In the Grand Mission Field yesterday they were somehow able to suppress Megu-san’s anger, but that rage will likely carry over to today.
The way things are now, if he went into the classroom then he would definitely witness a bloodbath.
「……Is it alright that I don’t mention Yamabuki?」
「Uhh…… Yamabuki will……We’ll offer him as a sacrifice to Megu-san……」
“We can’t go on without making some sacrifices”, Andou easily sold out his best friend.
If memory serves me, at the start of the quest, the one who lead the charge wasn’t Yamabuki. Wasn’t that you, Andou?
Nevertheless, to make Yamabuki into a scapegoat… You’re a pretty cruel fellow.
「……I’m not sure if she’ll listen to what I have to say, but, well, I’ll try」
「Seriously!? Alright, I’m saved! You really saved my ass!! 」
With tears his eyes, as if he was an inmate being saved from death-row, Andou tightly hugged Ran.
In front of the school gate were two male students suddenly sharing a warm embrace. Although the surrounding students were oppressively stared at them, Andou paid no attention to them and continued to hug Ran while vigorously patting him on the back.
Still, I’m a bit relieved. It looks like I won’t be barraged with questions about the Moon Step.
It looks like Andou’s mind was thoroughly preoccupied with trying to escape the evil clutches of Sasaki-san. The person in question, Megu-san, is probably also spending all her time thinking of ways to execute that「Punishment」of hers that she didn’t get to carry out yesterday.
Suzu-san didn’t seem that interested in the first place, and Yamabuki should be in the exact same situation as Andou.
In order to keep Dragon’s Krone as a place of refuge, It would be best of nothing came to pass of this incident.
With his doubts eased, Ran smoothed down his chest and felt relieved.
However, the moment he entered the classroom that thought of his was magnificently shattered.
「Hey, hey, Ed. ya know, Why’s it that you can use the Moon Step?」
The moment Ran sat in his desk, as if lying in wait for him with gleaming eyes, Megu rushed over to him.
Ran had made a grave miscalculation.
He had expected Megu to have her mind preoccupied with rage, but that anger was but a small drop in a vast ocean. The thing that captured most of her attention was the curiosity she held in Ran.
「Ed, is it, are you maybe friends with Aran?」
「Eh, no…… well, I guess you could put it that way, but……」
Or rather, who the hell is “Ed”?
Seeking help, Ran glanced over at Andou and Yamabuki, but they did nothing but join their hands together as if pleading, “Become our sacrifice”.
「Anyways, ya know, yesterday you were like, so super cool 」
「If I had to explain how cool Ed was when he stood up against those PK bastards…… How should I say…… You were like the main character in one of those movies, going off the save the heroine, something like that?」
“That would make me the heroine~”, Megu made sure to emphasize that part with a smile.
「Ed is like, you’re all plain and gloomy, and you’re always by yourself and seem lonely, I used to think something like that, but now I’ve got a whole new impression of you」
「W-Well thanks for that」
“Somehow, I feel that you just said an exceptionally rude thing though,” Ran thought to himself. But since he had absolutely no idea what was going on, Ran just sat there nervously looking around.
Was Megu-san always this type of character?
I, too, have a completely new impression of you.
「And so, Ed. About what I said before-」
「Good Morning, Edogawa-kun」
While Megu was licking her lips as she zoned in on her prey (or at least it seemed that way), interrupting her words was Suzu who just entered the classroom.
It didn’t seem like Suzu had any intention of asking Ran about what happened last night, and as she walked up to them while combing aside her chestnut-brown hair with her pinky finger, the female classmates in their surroundings faded away upon seeing her dazzling smile.
As expected, Suzu is different from the rest.
「C’mon now Megu, You’re troubling Edogawa-kun so quit it already」
「Ya, but, wasn’t he like really really cool? Ah, didn’t you say the same thing, Suzu?『Edgar-kun was so cool』」
After those words were said, the entire classroom seemed like it became entirely frozen cold.
The classroom was once bustling with morning activities, but that icy atmosphere gradually spread, and everyone in the classroom was gazing over at Ran and the others.
「……Something like *Kyun~* and getting emotional like that……Aaa, what…… Suzu……*Mmm,Hmnmf*!」
As her white cheeked were dyed the color pink, Suzu got behind Megu and restrained her, muffling her mouth so that she wouldn’t say anything else unnecessary.
「Edogawa-kun! That’s not true! It’s not what you think!」
Faced with an abnormal situation that he had never experienced before, the current situation far exceeded Ran’s mental capacity. He tried to analyze Suzu’s flustered words as if he was some other person.
What’s that suppose to mean.
When you say ‘it’s not true’, what are you trying to point out.
Or rather, yesterday, you guys, you only invited me to even out the numbers right? Now that the Grand Mission is over we should’ve returned to being nothing just normal classmates.
With the exception of Megu-san, if you’re not curious about the Moon Step then there should be no reason to talk to me. And for Megu-san, if I said something like「Long ago, I used to be Aran’s friend so he told me how to use Moon Step before I retired」then she would probably accept that and the conversation would be over.
That way everything would return back to normal; you guys would play Dragon’s Krone with your group of 4, and I will play it by myself.
With that, everything would be over, right?
「……B-But you know, Edogawa-kun」
Suzu’s voice once again disconnected Ran from his inner thoughts.
When he returned to his full senses, standing in front of him wasn’t Megu, but, bringing her hands together, in front of him was the figure of Suzu, with her head held down and looking somewhat embarrassed──
Peeking out from behind her chestnut hair, those upturned eyes forcefully caused Ran’s pulse rise.
「Yesterday I talked to Megu and, we decided that we should properly thank you. For playing Dragon’s Krone together with us, and, umm…… for saving us that time」
「……No, you don’t really have to」
「Thank You, Edogawa-kun」
The sound of Suzu’s soft voice gently floated into the air, Ran’s cheeks began to blush.
Ran ended up thinking that this must be some sort of hallucination, like he was still stuck in the virtual world of Dragon’s Krone.
「Kufufu, I’ll say a couple of words then too. Thanks okay, Ed. And ya know, I’m not sure if it’s much of a thank you, but when school’s over today we’ll go and help you level up」
「Since we’re only level 8, you’ll catch up to us in no time Edogawa-kun」
「Ah~, don’t worry. Andou and Yamabuki will also lend us a hand…… Isn’t that right!?」
Megu sent a glare at Andou and Yamabuki.
As if she had gotten a hold of their weaknesses, the two swiftly jumped to their feet and replied「With Pleasure!」.
It seems like Megu-san had not forgotten what happened yesterday, and was using it as an excuse to drag those two into compulsory service. I’m not entirely sure if that was Megu-san’s idea, or if it was Suzu-san’s idea though.
Girls really are to be feared.
「And so, after-school, is it okay if we all meet up again?」
「Ah, no, Megu-san」
Megu was raring to go, but Ran ended up speaking out.
It’s true that level up with everyone, that doesn’t have a bad ring to it.
All the more so since it will be with Suzu-san.
But, if I don’t livestream as Aran then things will be bad. It might rub the people in charge at DICE the wrong way.
「……Oh, sorry, did you have something planned?」
「No, umm…… well, I’m in no hurry, but there is an errand I need to do」
I can never say what it is though.
「I see……Then I guess, today might be a bit difficult huh」
Megu let out a sigh that said, ‘that kinda sucks.’
Having gotten the normally strong and forceful Megu to consent, Ran was feeling relieved. But, when he looked over at Suzu and saw into her eyes, he began to have second thoughts.
What Ran saw reflected in his eyes, looking back at him in complete silence, was Suzu who had an expression that said deep down in her heart that she was truly saddened──
A surging wave of guilt was swirling around in Ran’s heart.
Being swallowed up by that storm of guilt, Ran only had one way to escape it.
「……No, let’s do it today」
「Like I said, let’s go level up today. That errand, it will be fine if I don’t do it today」
Suzu’s face brightly lit up, and her mood rebounded.
Leveling up Edgar, and then livestreaming on Aran. It seems like I have a lot of sleepless nights lying ahead of me.
Socializing with others is truly troublesome. There’s nothing better than playing a VRMMO by yourself.
Ran grumbled to himself in his heart.
However, he still couldn’t resist Suzu’s smile. Breathing a small sigh, Ran let himself be pulled in.
Extra TL note #1: I seriously love the way Megu talks. It just sounds so… fitting. She uses a super casual “highschool girl” accent, and it’s absolutely the best. Too bad high school girl accents in english sound really annoying so I don’t know how to convey it properly.
TL note: As a reminder, Megu’s real name is Sasaki Megumi-san. I really wish ruby text worked on wordpress… Would make furigana easier
TL note: “We can’t go on without making some sacrifices” is the same phase Andou used when he said “Ran is better than nothing” in chapter 2, back when they decided to invite Ran.
TL note: Apparently Suzu’s habit is to comb aside her hair, not twirl it (I blame the author for using weird kanji to describe it). I made the change to chapter 2, and Here’s a picture for reference to what it should look like.