Part 38: Always Doing Things My Way

Yes, we're all prepared.

Good. That's what I wanted to hear. The Dragon's got no idea what's coming—everything's gone according to plan.

It'll still be tough, but if it can't tunnel around and break free, you'll have an easier time. Those materials you sent in got us a shipment of new equipment for you once you get here, so go tear that thing apart, tail to head! Let's go! Anytime, guys!

You guys ready?

I was reborn ready!

When was that?


Okay, now! Get those lamps all the juice we can!

The beast's agony was immediately obvious when the lights flashed on—the underground began to tremble with its master's displeasure.

Alright, eat this! This here's the fighting spirit of the dev team!



Readings indicate... 32 kilolux! It's like broad daylight in there!

Nice job, Keima!

Yeah, wassup!

He tossed us a few new weapons for our benefit.

Okay, go go go go go!! Let's do this!

Richter, Koron! Let's tackle the tail!

I thought you'd never ask!


Oh what, you thought we'd get away with only one fight with an enemy this huge? We're going to have to take down the Scaber in three battles, one for each segment of its body. The Scaber is the first Imperial we've faced with no weaknesses, and combined, its three parts have a whopping 17,600 HP, even beating out the final Imperial at Daiba. However, these first two fights are much simpler than the third one.

Chisa, I recommend full offense. Let's ensure a speedy victory!

Okay. I can do this.

Hehehehehehahahaha! Oh, this feels good!

It was just a tail, but it raised itself up...

...and attempted to clobber me.

Don't worry, I'm alright!

Oh, that didn't even hurt all that much!

This will!

Oh, incidentally—it didn't make much sense to show off-screen, but we upgraded the Industrial Area to level 5 in between updates, so the relevant members of the gang have upgraded equipment.

Yeah, uh, so, remember how the first thing I used this on was a Shield Dragon? Yeah, those guys have 150 Defense, and, uh. The Scaber's Tail has 92. This directly results in a colossal damage boost, then you have Motionless adding on, the 20% buff from Attack Booster, Chisa's already-high Attack stat... The math is something like, (222-92)*1.2*12.75*2.2?

The Scaber's Tail has 4000 HP, is the point. I sort of just casually obliterated it in a single move. I, uh... I kind of didn't realize it would do that much damage.

So for you guys's benefit, the Tail's moves, that it has, are a Gather Power buff for 30% damage dealt increase and a 25% damage taken decrease, an all-target Tail Swing, and Pierce, a move that deals heavy damage and heals the Tail for a bunch based on the damage it deals.

Not that that helped it because it's. It's dead. Thanks Chisa.

The tail rose up, as the beast itself let out one more roar of pain...

...and then collapsed.

You're making me look bad over there, Chisa.

Whoaaaaaa! So that's what you do with those swords? Holy crap, that was wicked megacool! Ohhh man, banging away like that with things I made, ohhh it's gonna make me tear up a bit!

With no tail, that big body is basically a stuffed model now! Keep at it!


Later, Keima! Thanks for the loot!

Thanks for the tears!!

Youka, switch out for Richter. Koron, stay up.

You got it!

Don't worry, kiddo, we got this.


I've been meaning to ask, but is that just a slab of iron on a hilt?

It can cut!

I suppose that's all we need.

I don't care much for being shown up, though. You'll have to forgive me in a moment.

Whatever you're doing, get behind me!

Oh, it'll need something to get behind!

Life is a beautiful thing, isn't it? Fleeting, yet brilliant in the light it shines on the world.

Even amidst all of this bright light, a well of inky darkness began to spread under the Scaber's trunk.

Shall we judge the strength of your light?

Quiver within the darkness without end, and see if the flame of your soul can remain whole!

May the gravity of your sins tear you to pieces!

Hehehehehahahahahahaha, AAAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!

It took the Scaber all the force it had to force its body out of that crushing, otherworldly pit of blackness.

What... was that.

I simply followed Masaki's instructions.

i dont think i want a reality marble

Dark Invasion's raw damage isn't as high as Sakura Cyclone or Skyhigh Meteor, but it's a magic attack when most enemies have equal or lower MDF than DEF, and it comes with a rider that debuffs all four stats by 5%. So, hey! It's still a great move.

Okay! Let me just... get back in the swing after that!

Wow, I'm amazed it can still move after that.

But not for long!

This is the same buff skill the Tail had.

Koron, you ready?

Tear it to pieces!

Koron's upgraded Ice spell, Icicle Eden.


Its body split easily after Koron's assault had crushed its flesh. Once again, a piece of the monster became still.

The Body has a pretty scary skill called Paralyze Jet, an attack that targets everyone, can't miss, and has a 75% chance to inflict Paralysis with a 51% negation chance. But unfortunately for it, I have a team of very powerful women. And Richter.

Waaaahhh! I'm gonna die, I'm gonna die!

...Huh? No waaay, it's already over?!

It's too bad I didn't get the chance to use Grenadine in action, though. Oh, well, I'm sure I'll get a shot someday, so to speak~


Okey-dokey! Next, please!

There's the head! We're almost through!

Be careful! We don't know what it'll do!

Satsuki! Youka!

It's go time, baby!

Let's rumble, you oversized earthworm!

And here's the main event, our long-awaited final showdown with the Imperial Dragon we met all the way back in Chapter 1.5. The Scaber itself has 10,000 HP, putting it a slight cut above Sleepy Hollow, and with the stats to match. It still doesn't have any weaknesses, but it's pretty slow, so it's liable to go after our characters.

Let's get this going!

Well, it doesn't have much to work with, does it.

Every other Imperial has two different basic attack types, but Scaber only has one—a Fang-type.


oh now that's the good stuff yeah

Richter, what's it doing?!

Readings indicate it's attempting to cause a cave-in, similar to the Granderodons! We'll have to be prepared!

That all you got, big guy?

When a tooth came in contact with Youka, it came away worse for wear.

You two get ready, I've got this!

Oh that smelled gnarly.

Get back!


This isn't even that painful, it's just unpleasant

Sewer Breath doesn't have a rider of any kind like most breath attacks, it's just damage.

Sorry, buster, but I've smelled a lot worse!

Cave-in imminent! Watch out!

I'm just fine, no worries! I can still take point!

Mama Fudoji, an opening, if you would?


Here you go, kiddo!

Thank you thank you~

Not a fan of having teeth, are you?

Aww, you shouldn't have! Toss it up!

Youka caught it by the jaw, and delivered a brutal uppercut that sent its head flying upwards.

Here I go!

Get your guns on!


The soporific's working! Get in there!

Like this?

Yup yup!

How's about this?!

The Scaber reared its head up for a desperate strike, and hit Youka, whose body fell to the ground, having gone into shock from the impact.


Not to worry! I'll handle this!

Head Stomp is the Scaber's most threatening move, since it's pretty much guaranteed to deal heavy damage and inflict Stop for a few turns.

As will I. Now get—

(you've got this! now bag that big one!)

Sorry, buddy, but you've messed with the wrong girl's mother figure! You're going down!

Satsuki leapt from hiding, with a jump that placed her dead on for a shot she couldn't miss.

And this one's for making it hard for my cats to sleep!

And this one's for being such a pain to get around!

And this one?

This one's for a taste of your own dang medicine!

The final hail of bullets pounded into the back of the Scaber's head, striking each other in succession to bury themselves deeper inside the wound. Each one followed an exact trajectory, calculated with the sort of efficiency that I knew only one girl could manage.

I'm the beautiful Satsuki!

And don't you forget it.

Assassin's React... is a really, really, really good skill.

Alright, I'm back! Let's—

Oh! You won already!

Great shooting, Satsuki!

Aww, y'know. I mean, I was energized by not having to sneak into the Shelter anymore and all, plus this fun new gun. I was on a roll, is all!

You really are quite the impressive shot, Satsuki.

I don't think I deserve all the credit. We all won this victory, team!

Yeah! When we work together, we're unstoppable!


A wind blew past, the Scaber no longer bottling it up through its colossal presence. Petals of dead Bloom flew through the air, fluttering in the wind to mark our victory.

Eeeeeee! The magnificent Unit 13 does it again!

Well, I'll be. Seems the spirit of the dev team can even overcome Imperial Dragons.

Thanks to you guys... and you too, old man. Seriously... that was amazing...!

Keima was still tearing up, attempting to wipe them away with his gloves.

We couldn't have done it without you all! Thank you so much for your help.

...Well, anything for our best suppliers, right?

Alright, mission accomplished! Um, not to rain on your parade, but please don't forget that sample? Kirino needs it.

On it! I bring gloves just for this purpose!

She then pulled out a different pair of gloves.

Like, specifically?


You defeated the Imperial Dragon "Scaber"!
"Murakumo HQ" slated for repairs!
"Industrial Area" slated for repairs!
"SKY Hangout" slated for repairs!


You did good work today. We won't let it go to waste. Keima! Reimi!

Hey, leave the thanks to us! Don't throw your back out, grandpa!

Ahhhh. I'm a bit jealous of you, Satsuki, getting to fire that thing! Does it have a name?

I haven't thought of one yet but I'll get back to you

You'd better! The thought of it is making my heart race!

What... are you talking—

Hey, who's that over there?

A young girl in red had managed to slump limply toward the entrance of City Hall.


...Of all the people... to see me. This is...



Oh, dear. She appears injured.

Hey, Reimi, go call a doctor!

Right! Got it!

Little kid like this made it all the way out here on her own, huh? Must be a real spitfire. Hey, don't you have places to be?

If you've got this handled, we should head to the Meeting Room.

Yeah, get on. We'll make sure she gets in. Get on in there.

...You know, it was an awfully inauspicious way to meet this particular girl, in retrospect. But, for now, she was just a girl to me... albeit a somewhat familiar one.

Control is given back at this point, so here's an aside! The Scaber has, for obvious reasons, vanished from the Underground dungeons, and there's actually a chest we can get to now because of that in Toshima.

It's this one. This is the chest. Thank you, back to your regularly scheduled Sympathy.

Hey, babe, just organizing the materials you sent back. How's it going?


I think we're going to need baths, though.

Oh! This one is from Daigo.

Did we tell you guys about that kid he saved? Real cool guy, that Daigo.

We also get Daigo's invitation to the Skylounge at this point. Meanwhile, up on 6F...

Hello, Shibuki.

Shibuki: Astoundingly, the number of your personal rescues has breached sixty! Even while chasing the Dragons out, you find the time to rescue people. I had to craft you something special myself, you know, through trial and error—well, perhaps more error than trial. The other researchers have taken to calling it Shibuki's Colorful Set, but I have no doubt it'll be of use.

Shibuki: For you, ma'am.

A. A nailbat? I-I wield... swords.

Shibuki: Yes, but nails are awfully sharp!

Is this a lollipop

Shibuki: A lollipop designed explicitly for the transmission of toxins, yes!


Shibuki: No, no! It's just a replica, please, what do you take me for?

Shibuki: Anyhow, I stole these from the Industrial Area to make you some knuckles!


Now I guess I can be the hardhead!

Please do not put those on your head.

Shibuki: And for you, sir!

Should I... be throwing this?

Shibuki: Please, please, no worries! I attached a string! Anyhow, you know, I know I shouldn't be self-centered, but I imagine any survivors out there might not last too long if we don't get to them first...


Shibuki: ...


Shibuki: Anyhow, that's all! Please enjoy them! Do your best!

You son of a bitch!

This is the largest reward we get from rescuing people. These five weapons, despite being silly joke weapons, are well above our current equipment in stats—for instance, the Executor Chisa just got gives +79, and the Nail Bat rockets up to 112. All of them reward in the realm of a +30 to the offensive stats, and the Lolly Dagger happens to also have a Sleep rider for good measure. About the only one that isn't a flat upgrade is the Gold Record, and that's because Richter's still rocking the Fuma Shuriken and its idiotic +40 Speed. Either way, though, the Colorful Set is 100% worth it—this puts us golden for weapons for most of the party for pretty much the entirety of the next dungeon.

...Koron doesn't get one. Perhaps the game knew that she is far too serious and powerful and very smart and cool and whatnot for such frivolities?

Okay, well, that aside!

I was rather busy, so I didn't see much of it, but Jeanne and Miroku were both beside themselves with the demonstrations of your martial prowess. And I heard something about Koron opening a gate to hell?

No, no, I simply opened a hole into a realm of my own internal logic.

...Don't take this the wrong way, but I think there might not be much difference.

Hah! That's fair. I do read far too much about the intricacies of nihilism.

Anyway, the sample, if you please?

Here you are.

Thank you. I'll begin analysis right away. We don't have much time, but it's doubtful any of us will be able to assist you in the same way in the freezing climate at Daiba—it's the furthest out we've gone, and there's not much we can do against the elements. Take a few days to prepare yourselves, then head out.

Right, we will.

The thing frozen to Tokyo Bay is the last Imperial. We're putting our faith in you. Please, do this—for me, and humanity.

Yes, sir, Mr. Kirino, sir!

Wha—Richter I get, but are we even different ranks? I mean—


Oh, I get it.

...You really are all amazing, you know that? Taking down a monster that massive. You've all really grown from when we first started this war.

As have you, Kirino.

What was that. Am I hallucinating? Did she just—? Is that a joke? Are you going to kill me for something?

No. It was a genuine smile, for fuck's sake! God!

When did she start doing that thing with her mouth?!

Intentionally, a few days ago. Unintentionally, some time ago. Satsuki could go into more detail.

Of course she could, why would I expect anything else?

I'm helping!

And that's actually gonna close out the main story content of Chapter 6. Heading over to Daiba will begin Chapter 7 at our leisure.


...Incidentally, I mentioned it before, but that Dragon in Toshima is just inside the one invisible passage in either game. I at the time remembered it also being something that opened up with the Scaber's death, like that one treasure chest. It wasn't. I, uh, I don't remember how to actually get it until after Daiba, while I'm doing the final sidequests. So that is when I am going to get that and properly, entirely clear out the Underground.


You know it! Just slammed down another Imperial.

Yattazo, yeah baby! Fighting for honor's the best! You're out there ganbarimasing all day long, ne, Chisa-chan?

Aha, yeah, I suppose so! But we've still got some energy.

I love a hero who tries hard, too, you know! Keep impressing, hero-tachi! Girls, be ambitious! Richter!

Thank you, Sharon.

Let's working!

Kitte kudasai! Akaneno-sensei's got 'em in a tizzy, ne? The research lab's stockpiling material nonstop! Seems they're making a super swell nanika! For whom? Well, probably our lovable, stylish, suave hero-tachi!

We are rather stylish.

Hai, hai! That cape is maji maji nonstop!

...Thank you. I think.

Ah, this is from Mr. Kirino!

Kirino-kun's looking for a book again! But this time, diary? Ja niary! A children's book!

...Is he really daijobu? Is it for his stress levels? Ahh, kyaah! You gotta help everyone's favorite poindexter!

Nestor and the Oak. I've read it. I have a feeling we'll find a copy around here.

'Navigator'? Which one?

Jeanne! You know her preeeeetty well, ne? That little kawaiiko-chan who's always all kira-kira about her unit! I'm super curious, but it's a himitsu to everyone—except you! Pronto to the max, and remember, worker-client confidentiality!

Well, we ought to go help her out!

we would be terrible if we left our cute little sister in the lurch!

That bookstore clerk should be in here.

You wouldn't happen to have a book by the name of 'Nestor and the Oak', would you?

Bookstore Clerk: Ah, that one. Yes, I know it. It's not very famous, but it's quite the heartwarming little fairy tale. I do believe I had a volume in the warehouse... One moment. ...Ah, yes, here it is, here you are.

Bookstore Clerk: At a time like this, curling up with a fairy tale isn't a half-bad idea. And when you're done with it, feel free to lend it out—others ought to enjoy it, as well.

Right. Of course.

Next up should be the Laboratory.

True to Sharon's word, the Laboratory was abuzz. We hardly managed to get the time to grab the arm of the man who'd made the request.

Top Scientist: Huh? I know Dr. Akaneno is your mother-in-law, Captain, but it's funny seeing you all by the Laboratory.

Well, we got the request.

Top Scientist: ...Shari, cherie, what were you thinking?!

Top Scientist: ...Maybe it's not too late. Uh, how many details do you remember?

Well, ah—

Not a single one~ My mind is like a sieve~

Top Scientist: Ah, lovely, it'll work on at least one person. Well, ah... we've got a bit of a competition going on, attempting to assist Unit 13 by developing new items. With all the data I've collected, I've managed to perfect the theory and blueprints of mine—but it's missing one key component.

Top Scientist: You've just returned from the Daiba Subway, yes? Did you happen to pick any glowing crystals out of the jellies in there? If you haven't, don't worry, I'd rather not impose—

We did, actually. Here you go.

Top Scientist: Oooh, here it is! In perfect condition, too! As I'd expect from our Unit 13! Hold on just a minute. Once I pop this in, it'll be done.

Top Scientist: Yes... yes! It's done!

Top Scientist: So I wanted to give it a fitting name! I present to you...

Top Scientist: ...THE TOTALLY UP!

Its make was clearly rather sophisticated. He held a blue-green circlet in his hands, glowing with the silver light of the Energy Crystal we'd handed him.

Top Scientist: A device designed to ease the body's energy consumption towards the development of combat instincts, allowing for hastier development of both physical capability and technique! You see, Captain Inomiko, I wanted to create an object that could simulate your heightened physical capabilities and adaptability in ordinary humans, and I've only just now—

He cleared his throat.

Top Scientist: So what do you think?!

I have mixed feelings about that name.

Mine are wholly negative. It's a bad name.

I donno, I think it's charmingly goofy!

Top Scientist: Exactly! If you're fighting something silly like a Sumo Dragon or a Hammerer, you need something with a silly name to combat it! ...Anyway, name aside, I really wanted to help with the final battle! I think you'll agree this is a perfectly crafted piece. Oh, it'll work for you too, Captain Inomiko, just so we're clear—I just wanted to, you know, simulate that effect.

Right, yes, I understand.

Top Scientist: But we're Murakumo too. And in spirit, we've always been there with you, Unit 13, no matter how off-putting or poorly socialized our members may be! So whatever you may end up fighting, think of us, too, and don't give up!

Top Scientist: I'm especially interested in your bodies!! Scientifically, of course, but I have no doubt that—


Top Scientist: What?

You were being genuine. I was feeling for you. I'm attempting to take your words to heart, so stop talking before my instinct to spit on your ilk acts up.

Top Scientist: ...You mean it, Miss Nagataka? In this instance, do you not hate scientists?

No matter how off-putting or poorly socialized you all may be, frankly, so am I. Your work is much appreciated as always. Good work.

Top Scientist: ...

I heard him sniffle and sob for a moment before standing up, screaming "YES!!!!" at the top of his lungs, and trumping past us to declare to everyone that he had succeeded to a degree that none had even thought possible.

...Alright. Now this, I have mixed feelings about.

I would take it as, they value your opinion.

As implied, the Totally Up is a mixture of the EXP and SP Up accessories—20% boost to both categories. What a lovely gift!

Hey, Hamachi.

Hamachi: Hey, Miss Fudoji.

hey hamachi

Hamachi: Hey, Satsuki.

Hey, Hamachi.

Hamachi: Hey, Hamachi.

Hamachi: Sorry. I mean Chisa.


Yeah, Hamachi, that's a pretty fishy joke.


Hey, Jeanne!

Unit 13? Your work is done for the day, isn't it? I—wait, were you the ones who received my request?

Another one we weren't supposed to get?

...Ehe. Well, I should really expect these things by now. You get all the requests you wouldn't think you would. I guess... This was what I really wanted, I think.


I hadn't brought it up again because we'd had more important things to do, but her bringing it up again made another pang of chill come up within my chest.

...Yeah. I do. I think we all do.


I'm sorry I kept quiet about it. It's... it's not that I meant to hide it from you. I know you hate those kinds of secrets especially, Chisa, but... you're such a kind person. I didn't want you to worry during your missions, so...

...It's okay. I... I think I get it. I mean, it's just...

I've been poring over this research data, and I found out it might be possible to extend the lifespan of the SKY subjects—Takehaya, yes, but also counteract any ill effects on Neko and Daigo. And, if that works for them—

Right! What do we need to do?

Well, the truth is... we've already done it once.

Another experimental subject?

Mmhm. He's not here anymore, but something might remain on his private server.

This facility's PCs, all the ones from outside, every PC on a Murakumo floor... None of them have worked. If you would, could you try a brute force approach and search through all of City Hall for me?

Of course. I couldn't exactly say no to something like that.

Besides, Miroku is right over there, trying not to cry.

I am not!

We'll do our best for you kids. You know that, right?

...I'm not going to let more kids die if I can help it. You know that.



You two are important to us. We'll go ahead now.

Kihada: Yeah, if there's anything I can do, I'm gonna do it like gangbusters!

What gusto.

During our brute force search, we found ourselves in the Meeting Room, with me, Richter, and Satsuki working together to check the terminals one at a time.

...Whaaaaaat are you guys doing?

Oh, Mr. Kirino, give me just one second if you would? I have a delivery.

Oh! T-that book! I wanted to borrow it from whoever had it, and I figured they'd swing by... What the heck are you doing with it?

Sir? I'm your personal assistant. How could I resist a request from you?

...You really are just the best assistant a guy could ask for, aren't you, Richter?

Not to interrupt, but are you okay? Why a fairy tale?

Wha—don't—don't look at me like that. I—well, I actually remembered that Ms. Hikasa mentioned this book at one point. She just started going on about it during research.

See, it's a fairly standard story, where... you know, "hard work and guts can overcome any obstacle", and all that.

...It's a pretty standard moral, but... I can see why it might've bothered her.

Yeah. Looking back, it... was something of a portent. After all... I didn't understand why she found it objectionable. ...Do you know about her aptitude scores? From the same sort of tests you and Richter took, to become eligible for the organization.

Always made to look over talent, she grew to value power more than anyone, I suppose... An inferiority complex down to her very soul. Even if I'd perfectly understood that anguish... could I have done anything to change it?

Mom used to foist off a lot of daily stuff on Aunt Natsume.

Mio had come inside from the door to drop off some supplies, it turned out. She told me later that she'd intended to be in and out with nobody seeing her, but she wasn't able to resist chiming in. She continued working, shuffling around boxes, as we all quietly listened to her.


Mom's been a genius since the day she was born. The old Akaneno family valued that, too—my grandparents and the people before them, I mean. And Mom... while she was always going on about how if she believed in herself enough, she could do anything, she'd bring Aunt Natsume along on her weird trips, or make her be her assistant when she didn't have anything better to do.

Back then, Mom didn't spend much time with me—she was too busy trying to impress her family, or doing her whole genius thing. So a lot of the time, I'd go over and stay at the Hikasa manor. I hated my mom, too, so I loved Aunt Natsume. I always knew she was strange, and as I got a bit older, I knew she wasn't really the best person—I think I was the only person she really treated well.

But she paid attention to me. She made sure I was doing okay—or as okay as she could manage, because she was messed up, too. But she really did try. And I...

For years, when people who didn't know me—like, teachers at school—asked me about my mother, I wanted to lie and tell them about Aunt Natsume. Every so often, Aunt Natsume would come pick me up instead of me having to take the train home, too. She was the one who asked me how school was going.

I was never a straight A student. I always did best in Literature, but I wasn't that great at that, either. The only reason I got into a high school like Hibikino is because my family was rich. I think I may have been the only person like that Aunt Natsume ever met. At first, I think she wasn't sure how to treat me because of that. But...

Last night, I couldn't sleep. I just stayed up thinking, "what if I'd told her that I wanted her to be my mom?" Because I did. If I'd been there as an equalizing force, would she...?

She was never going to be a good person, you know.

You think I don't know that? But even people who don't have good hearts can live well. They can live without hurting people. And I can't help but wonder if I could've been how Aunt Natsume could've done that, if I'd been honest about just how much she meant to me when it mattered. So... I think I get it, at least.


I'd... never heard a word of this. Not in nine whole years. I had to wonder if, perhaps, I'd missed it all—or even been willfully ignorant. Iod's words rang in my head, and looking at Mio with them in mind, I finally realized that... perhaps, even if meeting Mio was the beginning of my story... Meeting me wasn't the beginning of hers. Not by a long shot.

Mio... I...

...Pfft. Haha. Man, that is heavy, isn't it? It's nice to know I'm not alone there.

I suppose in my case, Ms. Hikasa is best remembered through moments like these—like this book we shared in those moments. The Ms. Hikasa I remember fondly is still worth remembering, even through those things I'd rather forget. Don't you think?

Yeah. I do.

You know, I've never realized it before, but no wonder the citizenry all love you. You've got a way of saying the right thing at the right time, don't you?

Let's call it the natural charisma of a queen of the night, shall we?

Well, ah... naturally, I'm grateful to the rest of you, too. Thank you for the delivery, Richter.

Huh? Oh, yes. Sorry, I forgot myself for a moment.

We also get an SP Up 500.

...We're nearing the end of our war, you know.

So what's the sitch? What're we running around for?


You know. You guys are doing your Quest Office roundup, right? I was busy, but I'm here now?

Oh, sorry. I just... I kind of didn't expect you to bounce back... so fast from all that talking?

Hey, it's what I'm best at.

We're hunting for a PC that will allow us to connect to the personal database of an artificial Murakumo talent called "Doctor", so as to perhaps find a way to treat Takehaya, patients like him, and the Navigators.

Oh whoa that's a big deal okay

Here, one sec.



Cool, got it.

Oh wow, it worked on the first try.

Our good luck charm onee-sama!

Oh, is it protected by password? Umm... Doctor would've chosen it... I don't know, um, maybe try "NA"?

Oh, that worked.

Doctor was always a bit eccentric, so I thought maybe he might've been that bold.

Oh, data seems to be coming in! I can't check it from over here, so please look closely for me.

We did so.

Wait, is this... a live transmission?

PC Message: 'Well, how are you feeling? My precious little NAV Series. What could you want to ask? You're likely troubled by your lifespan, am I right?''

'That's correct.'

PC Message: As you know, you're not going to be able to live a full human lifespan as it is. However,

PC Message: Well, how about that? I've told you the how, so you judge the if. It's not a very delightful prospect.

'Thank you for your assistance.'

PC Message: ...Of course, I know that whoever I'm speaking to isn't them directly—you're an intermediary. In that case, there's one thing you should know.

PC Message: This is an option only available to us artificial prodigies, understand? So however many years of life remain to you, I hope you'll make them happy.

The connection was shut off. However, Doctor had left behind some data—I had no doubt it was the method they needed.


I've placed the offered data on this USB for you. Here you are.

It looks like the only way for you two to live out full lives is to use this to remove your powers from yourselves.

So that's it, huh? ...Well, no need to worry about that for now, then.

Yup. Back to work.


Jeanne! Miroku! I don't want you to die!

W-we're not going to die right away, Chisa! And... if I throw these powers away right this instant, who's going to navigate for you?

...I mean, I could handle it until the war's over—

No, Miroku! Unit 13's Navigator is me!

...Geez. You're such a sap.

What about you, kiddo?

I'd be insulting my unit if I gave them up now. Of course not. Jeanne and I are in this together until the end.

...P-plus, I'm a little worried it might be unpleasant.

What? Oh, come on, don't be a baby.

W-well, I don't see you doing it, either!

We also get 5 Miracle Meds.




Before I lived in Tokyo, I lived in a very faraway place. I'm sure you and Miroku have both gathered that by now. You're smart.

In the last letter I ever got from the parents I had there, they told me that they'd just had another child, a baby girl with the brightest eyes. I was so excited to get home, and to finally get to know what it felt like to have a younger sibling.

But before I ever could, I disappeared. I was taken away, and I could never come back.

Her name was Jeanne, too. The little sister I never got the chance to meet.


I... thought you should know. What that name means to me.

So when all of this is over... all of this fighting, all of this war, and you can both live like normal kids... I'd like if I could be a good big sister to the two of you.

I'd really...

I'd really like that...!


...You... you idiot...

As I fell to my knees and embraced the Navigator twins, we all cried together. No matter how artificial they were, the warmth I felt from their bodies was real.

...Later, I learned something: turnabout, it seemed, was fair play. I had never told Mio that story, either.

Next time, we head to Daiba to enter the home of the final Imperial.

It is highly recommended that you read Koron Nagataka's Reminiscence, accessible from the Table of Contents, before proceeding to the next update.

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