Episode 65: Overlapping Hearts


“That’s …… unique sorcery, huh……” [TN: Furigana says Origin for the unique sorcery, so it may be its name]

 Me, Evi, Elisa, and Clarice were watching the semifinals. Amelia’s match was over now, but the next match was between Ariane and Albert, so we continued to sit in the same seats and watch the match unfold.

But …… the winner was already clear.

 Ariane would win this match. Albert had certainly put in a lot of effort. But it was not enough to reach Ariane.

 I am sure that he, who is fighting, understands that the most.

 He knows it. Albert understands that defeat is inevitable, but he never gave up.

His expression, his eyes, showed his indomitable will.

Then, with a huff, Ariane smiled …… she supposedly threw away her sword. Of course, Albert did not miss the opportunity ……, but he was defeated before the unique sorcery that Ariane had invoked.

The arm strength to break the sword with her bare hands and easily carry Albert, who just concentrated on defense with a swing of her fist, to the outside of the field. Moreover, she was probably not even serious.

Maybe it is only a glimpse of her true ability.

“Hey Ray ……, that’s ……”

“That’s unique sorcery-origin. It’s physical specialization, too.”

“Is ……Is that so …….”

Evi’s voice trembled slightly.

  Arianne’s limbs were stained reddish-black, so much so that you can visualize the codes running through them. The phenomenon of visualization of codes for Prima Materia is rare, but it certainly exists.

 But it is a phenomenon that only a limited number of sorcerers can cause.

 To have arrived at that at such a young age, I have to take my hat off to …… honestly.

 Ariane Olgren. That confidence is not a bluff. Because of her abilities, she was able to act so confidently.

 But is Amelia …… going to be okay?

Does Amelia now have the ability to stand up to her?

If asked that question, I can only say …… that she doesn’t.

No, she has the skills to fight. She may be overwhelmed, but she has not completely lost her chance of winning.

 And that Unique sorcery, origin, consumes a lot of the prima materia. If you can bring the fight to an endurance battle, you can see victory.

 I want to tell Amelia that, but …… I wonder if I should say anything to her now.

I know she’s avoiding me. So shouldn’t I be quiet as well? That’s what I feel ……. But is that really what I should do? Can I leave Amelia alone like this forever?

 Such conflicts arose in me.

 But at that time, I could not find the answer.

 ◇

The next day was a rest day.

 And tomorrow, the finals will finally begin. At last, this Magic Chevalier is coming to an end. So far, the competition has ostensibly proceeded without any problems.

 But we don’t know when the reaper will intervene. We should remain vigilant.

“……”

 I lie in bed and look up at the ceiling.

 Today, as usual, I worked as a vendor in the morning. And today was the end of that job. The sales were extraordinary, and the role had come to a successful conclusion.

Now I have to work as a member of the management committee for tomorrow’s game and …………. Amelia’s final game.

 Will Amelia be okay?

 That was all I could think about today. Sometimes I couldn’t get my work done, and Elisa and Clarice warned me about it.

Amelia may have been …… overwhelmed by that match. 

I know that. I understand her abilities as much or more than Amelia. There is a way out of this. She has the skill to fight.

 But if her heart admits defeat, it will all be for nothing.

 Can Amelia stand up to …… that overwhelming unique sorcery in front of her?

I think that as a friend, I should be the one to give a shout-out…… here. But I couldn’t get this body to move. I just wondered …… if I should touch that heart.

“Amelia,…… you are,…….”

 While I was thinking about this, morning had come. I was so worried about her that I couldn’t …… sleep a wink.

However, even if I don’t sleep for a day or so, my performance won’t be compromised.

Let’s do our work as usual,…… and when I went to open the door, there were Elisa, Clarice, and Evi.

Why in this morning,……

As I was thinking that, I also noticed that all of them had serious expressions on their faces.

“Ray-kun,…… that,…….”

Elisa was first to open her mouth.

“…… something wrong?”

“That …… actually, you see. Everyone wanted to go to Amelia-chan’s place,…… but I thought that Ray should be the one to do it,…….”

“…… me?”

When I asked so, Clarice and Evi nodded silently and opened their mouths.

“Ray, I know you’re lost. You’ve been thinking since yesterday about whether or not you should go to Amelia’s place.”

“It’s rare that Ray wasn’t focused on his work. I noticed that too.”

 Ahh.

 Is that so. That’s what happened.

 It seems that my friends could see right through me.

 I had no choice but to admit it.

Then I exposed my heart like an overflowing drop of water.

“……After all, I can’t hide anything from you. I’ll be honest,……, I was scared. I was afraid to step into her heart. I knew that Amelia had been struggling for a long time,……, but I wasn’t sure if I should. But I wasn’t sure if I should …… step in or not. I wondered if I should touch that heart and end up destroying it,…… so I thought. I kept asking myself if I was making the right choice and …… running away from it. I wanted to face Amelia…..”

 Once I spoke, I was able to put this thought into words naturally.

 You can’t always do things alone. When I met my master, she helped me.

 And now I am asking my friend for help.

 Until now, I would have denied even this act.

But now, …… because I am in front of these reliable friends, I can speak my mind naturally. 

When I revealed my feelings, Elisa wrapped her hand around my hand.

“I’m sure that Ray-kun …… is the only one who can touch Amelia-chan’s heart right now. Even if we all go, Amelia-chan will mend it again. And then she’ll force herself to smile and go straight to the finals. …… But if Ray-kun says what he’s thinking as he said to us, I think he’ll reach out to her. Amelia-chan is waiting for you. She is waiting for Ray-kun for a long, long time. We have been pretending not to see this for a long time too, but if we don’t do it now,…… we will never make it. And ……only Ray-kun can do it!”

“I agree. Elisa is right. Ray, you should go. Don’t worry, I’m sure Amelia will open up to you,…… I believe so,…….”

“I know I don’t have much to say about it,…… Ray. I knew you were struggling too. And it’s the same for us. But I think this place is only for you. It’s probably scary to go up against Ariane Olgren. But that’s why you can help. I’m sure Amelia believes in Ray just like you believe in us.”

 Ah. I see.

 I guess I made the right choice after all.

 My words will reach Amelia. No, I will make it reach her.

 I was scared. I was afraid of exposing my innermost feelings and being denied.

 But everyone believes in me.

Besides, Amelia is seeking it.

 I’m sure it’s her. She’s probably in the corner of the room right now, crying by herself.

 I knew it.

 Amelia is the eldest daughter of the Rose family, the first of the three noble families, but at the same time, she is just a fifteen-year-old girl.

 There was nothing special. Like any human being, she has her weak side.

 So it is okay to be there for her.

 There is something I can do for Amelia, just as my mentor did for me in the past.

 No more excuses for myself. The waiting is over.

 I can move on. This choice is not a mistake.

 Everyone has proven that to me.

 So all that’s left is …… for me to do as I see fit and help Amelia.

“Thank you all ……. I’m off. And I’m going to tell Amelia how I feel. I’ll let her know how I feel.”

“Umm, ……!”

“Go on!

“Ray ……, go for it!”

I ran past Elisa, Clarice, and Evi.

Now I just wanted to …… get to Amelia, to get to her as soon as possible, and that’s how I …… left the dormitory.

“Amelia…… so you’re here, huh……”

“H-How did …… find …… here?”

“I know exactly where Amelia’s running from my training.”

“T-That’s. Because …… because …… I ……”

 I found her. I looked everywhere. It was hard to follow Amelia’s trail in such a crowded place.

 But I thought …… that she must be here.

 Amelia would not run away. But I am sure that deep down she wants to run away.

 It is only natural that she would be terrified after seeing Ariane’s unique sorcery. That’s why Amelia came here thinking that she would be mourning alone in this place.

 And as I approach Amelia, who is holding her knees, I sit down again. I fix my gaze on Amelia and clasp …… her trembling hands.

“Amelia. I was …… I was scared …….”

“Eh ……?”

My hands were shaking as well.

 

It’s pathetic. Even though I was prepared to face the situation in this way, my heart is still scared.

Facing someone is …… something that I am afraid to do.

 But I’ll still tell …… here.

 That’s why I came here.

“I knew it. No, not only me,…… but also Elisa, Clarice, and Evi who sent me here,…… knew that Amelia was troubled and in pain…. …”

“Is that,…… Is that so,…… everyone knew that,…… ah, ahaha. That’s …… so disappointing, right? The eldest daughter of the Rose family, one of the three most noble families, is like this, wow, it’s hilarious, isn’t it……?”

 Amelia was shedding tears while forcing a smile.

 No, that is not even a smile. It’s just that she’s distorting her face and staring at me …… as if she’s trying to get a good look at me. She’s trying to make up for the tears by giving a half-hearted smile.

 It is so painful.

I intertwine my fingers with hers and regain my grip on her hand, and continue to …… speak further.

“Amelia. I want you to talk to me. I want to know your heart. …… I want to touch your heart. I don’t want to run away anymore. I don’t want to regret. So, please talk to me honestly ……. I don’t want you to mend, or put on a mask anymore.”

“I see. I know, Ray will understand. That’s right. I’m really …… helpless, aren’t I …….”

Then Amelia began to talk of her past. She explained what she had been thinking about in her life and how she ended up here.

“I, you see. I’ve been playing the role of the Amelia that everyone around me wants me to be,…… and I’ve been imagining and acting the way other people want me to act,…… to be worthy of being the eldest daughter of the Rose family. It’s always been that way. I compared myself to those around me, and Rebecca-senpai, and especially Ariane, I was always …… being compared to them all the time. So I’ve been trying, and trying, and trying, and trying to get to this point. But haha, compared to Ray’s past, this is really a …… thing that can’t be helped, right? It’s really a small thing, and compared to your tragic past, I’m nothing …….”

 Amelia tells me this, stunned, just looking down.

Her spilled tears spread on the ground.

 I saw that, and I spun more words.

“Amelia. Comparing your past with my past is meaningless. Compared to my past, does it make …… you feel better to think that your suffering is light compared to mine?”

“That’s …….”

“That’s right. It’s not true. That suffering is not healed …… if you compare it to someone else’s suffering. I know, I’ve been there. People’s problems and suffering are absolute. So there is no point in comparing them. Amelia has been suffering for a long time. Isn’t that right, ……?”

“Right. That’s right. All the time. It has been painful. ……. I was wondering why I had to go through all this to live. I’ve been thinking about it for a long, long time. ……”

“……”

“I thought that by meeting everyone, meeting Ray, I would be able to grab something. I thought if I could win this competition, I could be somebody. Yeah, that’s what I thought. Hahaha …… I’m not going to beat Ariane after all. No matter how long it takes, I’ll always be nothing more than a bird in a …… cage……. Hey, Ray. Why, why am I still alive? I’m faking it, playing myself, embodying my ideal. Still, I can’t reach her. I will never reach her. Is there any meaning to my life like this……? Hey, tell me, Ray,…… why am I …… alive?”

We overlapped our hands.

 

 No, it’s my and Amelia’s hearts and minds that are overlapping right now.

 I knew Amelia was holding it inside of her. There was nothing dramatic in the past. But Amelia’s suffering has been going on for more than a decade. The suffering is not relative. It is an absolute thing that only Amelia knows.

 As I step into it, I want to …… tell her what I need to tell her.

 I may not be able to put it into words.

But still, I wish I could touch her heart, that I could save someone …… like I was …… able to do for me one day.

 I wanted to choose to live that way, that I could not only take a life, but I could also save someone.

 So just put this thought into words.

“Amelia. There is no …… meaning to life for a human being.”

“What do you mean …… “

” ……There’s no meaning to …… us, humans. Everything that people create has a purpose first. Based on the wish of that purpose, people have created many things. But we exist before that purpose. Just as I had no choice but to go through that war, Amelia cannot leave her aristocratic background. Because we have no noble meaning. There is no meaning to life. I don’t know what that is either. ……”

“T-That’s right. But then, I. What am I supposed to do, …………? If even Ray doesn’t know, if there is no meaning to it, why live ……? Hey, why ……?”

 I hugged her. I didn’t care about appearances anymore. I just acted on my emotions. I just wanted to rescue her, her clinging eyes, her despair-stained eyes, I just wanted to save her. 

 Thinking back, I had never been this emotional …….

 It was because I was afraid. What would be waiting for me if I exposed these emotions?

 Because I was afraid that I would be rejected.

 But it was the same for Amelia. That’s why I’m exposing these feelings …… only now.

 I’m going to put into words just what I’m thinking, just as I’m thinking it.

 Then, I hugged Amelia’s body as much as I could and spun …… more words.

“But Amelia. We, human beings, can find …… the meaning of life. There is no meaning in being born. The meaning of life has never existed from the beginning. But we can find meaning. We should make our own meaning for our own life. …… So I want to search for it with you. …… And I will search for it with everyone. I’m weak too. Humans are like that. There is no such thing as a perfect human. Everyone has a weak side. That’s why we touch each other like this and put our hearts on top of each other. Is that not enough? Isn’t searching for meaning together the meaning of life ……?”[TN: It’s tooo deep man like it’s too deep]

 I’ve always wanted to tell you this.

 I wanted to tell her this, not in someone else’s borrowed words, but in my heart’s …… way.

 I wanted to move forward together.

 I wanted to move forward together, leaning on each other. I never thought it would be so difficult, so scary, and so time-consuming to put into words.

 But once I made up my mind, I was able to tell her naturally.

 It was as if my heart was touching Amelia’s heart.

 And she remained silent for a while, …… shedding tears and spun the words again.

“Uu……uuh. Uu…… hey,……? Even if I, such as I am,…… by your side? Even if I’m such a …… wimp, such a crybaby, is it okay? Is it …… okay for me to be by everyone’s side, by Ray’s side? Is it …… okay that I don’t have to pretend anymore, that I’m just as I am, as weak as I am?”

“It’s only natural. You can be there. You can live. So let’s live together. Let’s search for it. Both Amelia and I are still in the process. So let’s go. Let’s go forward together. Let’s live together, in pain and sorrow. Let’s search for the meaning of life together. Let’s live together, supporting each other in our weaknesses. I want to move forward with you. ……”[TN: live means living life, not just ‘not dying’ in this context]

“Yeah……! Yeah ……! Uwaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!”

Amelia just cried, sobbing.

And I, too, let out a lone tear from my right eye.[TN: Remember Erza?]

 That’s right.

 We are all searching for something. The meaning of life.

 But alone, our hearts will surely be broken.

 That’s why we touch each other. We seek. We seek the hearts of others.

 And by exchanging words, we can build up our hearts and minds.

 We will never know what is really in our hearts until we put it into words. That’s why we put these overflowing feelings into words and touch each other.

 That is how we will grow.

 Not only as sorcerers but also as human beings.

 Amelia. It’s all right now. You have your friends …… and me by your side. So let’s search for the meaning of life together and live. Let’s go on together from now on.

 To the beyond —-


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