Chapter 24:

Name (Part 3) (END)


“Are you sure your neck is fine, kid?” Abayomi approached Masuyo.Bookmark here

“Yes. What do you want to talk about?” the boy replied dryly.Bookmark here

“Wow, okay.” the woman smiled, “It’s about what I found at FuturingTech the other day!”Bookmark here

“What?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, there was some interesting stuff there! Regarding the ID chips, I mean.” she kept smiling.Bookmark here

“And? What did you find out?” Masuyo stepped closer to Abayomi.Bookmark here

“Oh, well! All I can tell you is that the Mijiyuu hacked their system.” she turned around, showing her back to the boy.Bookmark here

“What? What does that mean? It’s all lost? This is why the archives are encoded?”Bookmark here

“No! Not everything is lost! If you find someone who’s better than Yoko at the computer, you might be able to decode what you want, or even follow Mijiyuu’s tracks, right, Sute Koizumi?” Abayomi glanced at the girl.Bookmark here

“What? Do you know someone, Sute?” Masuyo turned to the girl.Bookmark here

“What are you doing, Abayomi?” Sute scowled at her.Bookmark here

“I’m sorry girl, but after talking to Masanori I realized you needed a little push.” Abayomi turned to Sute and put her hands in the coat’s pockets. "Don't you think as well?"Bookmark here

"..." Sute glared at the woman and didn't reply.Bookmark here

Abayomi gave a mocking smile and stepped outside of the building. “Wow. Looks like it’s gonna rain!” she uttered while staring at the sky and then left, bitting the toothpick in her mouth. Bookmark here

“Grr.” Sute clenched her teeth as she observed the woman leave.Bookmark here

“Sute?” Masuyo called, “So, you know anyone that good?”Bookmark here

“Hmm…” the girl’s emotionless eyes stared at the boy’s pleading ones, “I might, but don’t you know one yourself? You were talking about it with Yoko, right?”Bookmark here

“Well, kind of…” Masuyo diverted his gaze, “But if you know someone, everything will work out better. I’m sure of it.”Bookmark here

“I wouldn’t be so sure.” Sute muttered and walked through the door.Bookmark here

“Hey, wait!” Masuyo followed the girl. The two talked as they took the shortest route to the residential buildings.Bookmark here

“WHAT?” Sute growled.Bookmark here

After hesitating for a moment, the boy replied: “Can you talk to that person and get me what I want?”Bookmark here

“How would I know what you want? Aren’t you the one to go to Futuring Tech today?” she kept walking without looking at Masuyo.Bookmark here

“You’re right. So, can you say to me who it is??”Bookmark here

“Maybe tomorrow, I don’t feel like doing it today.” Bookmark here

“What? Why?!” the boy asked while going up the stairsBookmark here

“Because I don’t feel like it.” Sute repeated and hurried to her apartment’s floor.Bookmark here

“Sute? Wait!” Masuyo followed her. He arrived at the third floor in time to see Sute and Kazashi bump into each other.Bookmark here

“Sorry about that, but I was looking for you anyway.” Kazashi started, she was holding an Utablet in her hands, “I wanted to talk about one thing. Do you have the time now?”Bookmark here

“Hmm…” Sute glanced at Masuyo, “Yes, I’m super free now.”Bookmark here

“Great. So, I was looking through some of the files Hisoka sent me. The ones about The Ozanne Incident, you know, the one from twelve years ago?”Bookmark here

“Yes.”Bookmark here

“I just thought it was kind of weird. There’s not much detail. They just say it was what prompted something like the dives to happen. Do you know anything about it?” Bookmark here

“I know that The Ozanne Incident didn’t happen here, but he had some partners in this city… maybe you could find more in the file room. I can take you there if you want.”Bookmark here

“Yeah, I…”Bookmark here

“HEY!” Masuyo exclaimed, “ARE YOU REALLY GOING TO JUST IGNORE ME?” Bookmark here

“Wow, Masuyo. You were just standing there like a weirdo?” Kazashi raised an eyebrow.Bookmark here

“Sute!” the boy ignored Kazashi.Bookmark here

“Can’t you see that I’m helping Kazashi-san now?” Sute turned to him.Bookmark here

“Yes, but we didn’t finish our talk. You said something weird.” Bookmark here

“Did I?” Bookmark here

“Yes. C’mon Sute, can’t you give me the name? Please.”Bookmark here

“Hmm…” Sute stared at the boy, “If that’s what you want, then go rest and leave everything to me.”Bookmark here

“What?”Bookmark here

“You don’t want to know the name, you want to find out if Kisho can be alive, right? So, I’ll look for him in your stead. You can just relax and let me handle it.” Bookmark here

“Huh??”Bookmark here

“I don’t know if you turned deaf in the last couple of seconds, but I said you can relax and let me do everything.”Bookmark here

“Can’t you just tell me the name? I have to do this today, I’m finally free now! This is why I joined this stupid ‘job’!”Bookmark here

“Is that so? So everything was a burden to you?!” Sute glowered at the boy.Bookmark here

“Well…”Bookmark here

“Aargh! You idiot!” Sute jumped onto Masuyo and the two fell to the ground at the same time as a rumble of thunder could be heard from afar.Bookmark here

“What? Get away from me!” the boy struggled for a second.Bookmark here

“What are you guys doing?” Kazashi hurried to separate the two.Bookmark here

“I said you can leave everything to me. If you’re in such a hurry you’ll have to find a third way.” Bookmark here

“Grr.” Masuyo clenched his teeth and stood up, “Okay, that’s what I’ll do.” he headed to the stairs.Bookmark here

“Humpf.” Sute followed the boy with her eyes as she rummaged the sweatshirt’s pockets. She picked up her cellphone and started to call someone: “Hello, Adda-san!” Sute greeted, “Can you please do me a favor?”Bookmark here

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“I guess there’s no helping it. For some reason, that weirdo is acting like that today.” “Yoko! Yoko!” Masuyo ran through the corridors of the main A.M.A. building shouting the woman’s name. He finally managed to locate her voice in the nursery, on the second floor. Yoko and Hisoka were fighting about how dangerous Abayomi Etter was until Masuyo interrupted them by opening the door.Bookmark here

“Huh?” the two looked at the panting Masuyo.Bookmark here

“Yoko! I… need to know… where your teacher lives, now!”Bookmark here

“Huh? Well…” she wondered for a moment, “I’m sorry. I don’t know where she went after the A.M.A.”Bookmark here

“Aargh! Okay, thank you.” Masuyo sighed and closed the door.Bookmark here

“You’re welcome…?” Bookmark here

“Crap! How can I get to her now?! If only Sute didn’t act like a kid! Argh.” the boy walked through the corridors with heavy steps, “Maybe Abayomi or Masanori know? But how will I contact them? Maybe I should turn around and ask Hisoka…”Bookmark here

BE BE” Masuyo’s phone received a call, startling him.Bookmark here

“Huh?” Masuyo stared at the unknown number for a moment, “Hello. Who is this?”Bookmark here

“Hello, Masuyo-Senpai!”Bookmark here

“Senpai?”Bookmark here

“Oh, yes! I’m sorry! It’s just Masuyo, right?” Bookmark here

“Yeah… Who’s talking?”Bookmark here

“I’m sorry! It’s Genki! Genki Kaneko.”Bookmark here

“Genki? What are you doing calling me now? How did you get my number?” Masuyo frowned.Bookmark here

“It’s just that I went to your house a couple of times, Senpai. But you weren’t there! Your parents told me you had a job now.” Genki explained, “I didn’t know when you’d come back so I decided to call after I didn’t saw you there today.”Bookmark here

“Hmm…” Masuyo bit his lip, “I’m very busy, but what’s the reason for your…” he stopped with the sudden realization of something. “Of course! It’s Kaira we’re talking about!”Bookmark here

“Huh? Masuyo?” Bookmark here

“I’m sorry, Genki. I have to go now, but I thank you for reminding me of something.”Bookmark here

“Hmm… okay. Glad I could be of help…”Bookmark here

After hanging up, Masuyo instantly began to call his mother while heading to the exit of the building.Bookmark here

“Huh? Masuyo-kun? It’s weird for you to be calling at this time.” a female voice answered.Bookmark here

“Mother! Can you tell me where Kaira’s house is?”Bookmark here

“Huh? What is this all of the sudden? Are you finally meeting your cousin?”Bookmark here

“No, I just need a favor from her. It’s going to help me find my brother.”Bookmark here

“At this point in time, I thought you’d have already talked to her…”Bookmark here

“But I haven’t. Can you send me the address?”Bookmark here

“Hmm… they were living in an apartment. I don’t recall what the address was.”Bookmark here

“Apartment?! No, I’m talking about that place we went to once! It was after we went to a park! We ate Spring Cirashizushi!”Bookmark here

“Oh... That place?”Bookmark here

“Yes, can you send me the address?!” Masuyo left the building as the clouds seemed to be darker than ever, threatening to let the rain fall.Bookmark here

“Yes, I’ll text it to you.”Bookmark here

“Okay! Thank you!” the boy hung up the call and then stared at the sky, frowning. He dashed towards the front entrance of the property, where Adda seemed to be already waiting for him.Bookmark here

“Leaving when the rain is about to fall is a terrible thing, right, Masuyo-san?” the chauffeur remarked.Bookmark here

“I need to go here, now.” Masuyo ignored the remark and showed him the message he had received from his mother. It had Kaira Nakai's address.Bookmark here

“I'm sorry, Masuyo-san. I’m afraid I cannot take you there now.”Bookmark here

“What? Hisoka said that it was fine after we finished our case!”Bookmark here

“And it is.” Adda ensured, “But someone else bookmarked with me today.”Bookmark here

“Someone...? Who?”Bookmark here

“I believe you know the answer already.”Bookmark here

Masuyo looked around, trying to grasp who wouldn't want him to leave the property at that time. His expression hardened with the realization: “Sute.”Bookmark here

“Exactly. Sute-san informed me that she’ll take care of your business for you, so you should relax instead of going somewhere you don't like, to meet someone you hate.”Bookmark here

“Aargh!” Masuyo growled and held his head, “Why does she keep getting in my way like this?!”Bookmark here

“Believe it or not, Masuyo-san, but she says it’s for your own good. She wishes the best for you.”Bookmark here

“Even if that was the case, she has to understand that I need to find out he's alive as fast as possible! You really cannot take me there, Adda?”Bookmark here

“I'm sorry, Masuyo-san.”Bookmark here

“Aargh! Is there anyone else that could take me there?”Bookmark here

“Not today, I'm afraid.”Bookmark here

“If that's the case I should just call for a car...” Masuyo looked at his phone, “It’ll take much longer, but it's a small price to pay.”Bookmark here

“I should warn you: particular vehicles can't come close to A.M.A.'s property. You'll need to be at least 700 meters away.”Bookmark here

“Great, everything just getting better and better.” Masuyo muttered.Bookmark here

“Can’t you consider doing this another day?” Adda asked.Bookmark here

“No.” the boy started to run.Bookmark here

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“Shit, I don't have any money here.” Masuyo was panting. He had called a driver to pick him up. “Well, I can just use my card.” the boy rummaged in his pockets, “What?” they had nothing besides his almost devoid of charge cellphone.Bookmark here

“Hey, you're Masuyo Hirano?”Bookmark here

“Huh?” Masuyo turned towards the voice. It came from a man driving a car, the driver Masuyo had called.Bookmark here

“You sure are in a far place, but...” he analyzed the boy, “What were you looking for just now?” the man was definitely suspecting something was up.Bookmark here

“I? I was...”Bookmark here

“I knew it. You don't have the money, right?”Bookmark here

“Well...”Bookmark here

“Yeah, kid. I won't fall for that type of prank again.” the driver started to turn around with the vehicle.Bookmark here

“No, wait!” Masuyo stretched his hand as if trying to seize the car. “Shit!” he exclaimed when the vehicle disappeared from his view.Bookmark here

“Maybe this is a sign? That I should go back for today?” Masuyo stared at the grey sky, “But I have to know that he can be alive! I know he's alive! And knowing a little bit about Kaira I’m sure she can find out today...” he turned his gaze to the road ahead of him, “It’d be so easy if I had my card... I'm sure I had it! At least until...” the memory of a short girl in a sweatshirt jumping on him passed through his mind, making Masuyo scowl.Bookmark here

“She wants to prevent me from going there that much?!” the boy thought aloud as the sound of thunder filled the sky. Masuyo looked at the address on his cellphone again, “Yeah, it's no big deal. I can definitely walk this.” he started to run, “She’s not going to stop me for no reason!”Bookmark here

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Kaira’s and Kisho's house, the house where they probably raised their son. To get there from unity seven Masuyo had to cover a part from Kitoyama's perimeter. It would take him hours to arrive there, but he didn't stop. He kept straining his body, forcing it to move forward.Bookmark here

Masuyo remembered, at least he had a guiding point. One of the Daiken was near their house, so he had to go towards it. This way he wouldn't get lost.Bookmark here

BE BE.” his cellphone phone received a call, it was from Sute, so he turned it off.Bookmark here

She kept calling him, and he kept turning it off while heading to the Daiken, to Kaira and Kisho's home.Bookmark here

“I’m not falling for that.” Masuyo murmured while looking at his phone, he received calls from other numbers, but it was obviously Sute trying to get him to answer. “You're not stopping me.”Bookmark here

Besides the calls, the boy received tons of messages, but he didn't pay attention to them, and it didn't last long either. Masuyo's phone ran out of charge.Bookmark here

“Hahaha!” the boy laughed as if he had heard the best joke in the world. He held his head with one hand while staring at his cellphone which was in the other, resisting the temptation to break the device, “Well, you can't talk to me now, Koizumi-chan!”
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It finally started to rain, soaking Masuyo's clothes with cold water. Even with that, he didn't care about anything else. He had to visit that house again. “I can’t know if I’ll have the resolve to go there again another day. I should take advantage of this whim.” he trudged towards the still far antenna type thing.Bookmark here

After some time, Masuyo began to cough, his vision being blurred by the water and his body trembling with the cold, “Rain? This is way more like a storm, haha.” but he couldn't stop. He was over the hump already, probably…Bookmark here

“Masuyo!” someone called him as he was about to collapse, “Masuyo!”Bookmark here

“Over the hump my ass.” Masuyo scowled, it was the bland voice he didn't want to hear at that time. Adda’s car was pretty silent, but if it wasn't for the sound of the rain and his thoughts, the boy would definitely have noticed the car parking a few meters from him.Bookmark here

“Masuyo!” a girl jumped out of the car with an umbrella in her hands and ran towards the boy who was leaning against the wall.Bookmark here

“WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?!” Masuyo screamed at Sute as she approached him, “GET OUT OF MY WAY!”Bookmark here

“I’m here because of your health, you moron.” Sute covered both of them with the umbrella.Bookmark here

“Oh, yeah?” he didn't look at her, forcing his body to take another step towards the Daiken.Bookmark here

“Stop it, now!” Sute yelled at him, but he didn't listen. “You’ll catch a cold like this! Pneumonia even!” Bookmark here

“Hmm...” the boy ignored her. His eyes were completely fixed on the Daiken.Bookmark here

“Masuyo!” Sute tried to stop him by the shoulder.Bookmark here

“Argh, GET AWAY!” Masuyo pushed the girl, making her fall to the ground, drenching her clothes.Bookmark here

“No! You get in the car!” Sute stood up, leaving the umbrella on the ground. She jumped on Masuyo, trying to rear him into Adda's car. Normally Masuyo would have the advantage, but since he was exhausted, he couldn't get away so easily.Bookmark here

“What are you doing, Sute?!” Masuyo struggled.Bookmark here

“You’re too obsessed with this! I told you to let me handle it!”Bookmark here

“Look who's talking! You can't get enough of me yourself!” Masuyo grasped Sute's arms, trying to release himself, “You can't decide if you're kind or if you’re in my way! And it’s all for no reason!”Bookmark here

“Shut up, you idiot!”Bookmark here

They both swayed, almost falling.Bookmark here

“You are the idiot! Acting in illogical ways!”Bookmark here

“No!”Bookmark here

“Is that so?!” Masuyo started to overpower her, “So, why don't you tell me the logic behind it?!”Bookmark here

“NO!”Bookmark here

“Let me go!”Bookmark here

”I can't!”Bookmark here

“Why??!”Bookmark here

“Because you'll hate me!”Bookmark here

“It looks like I might hate you anyway!”Bookmark here

“No!” Sute used all her strength to pull Masuyo, making them both fall on the wet ground. “Argh!” she let out a shout of pain when her back hit the asphalt.Bookmark here

“Finally!” Masuyo began to crawl, the pain on Sute’s back made her let go of the boy for an instant.Bookmark here

“You’re not going there!” the girl leaped forward and grasped onto Masuyo’s legs as he tried to stand up.Bookmark here

“What are you doing?!”Bookmark here

“Please! Please don’t go there!” Bookmark here

“Huh?” Masuyo finally realized the girl’s tears.Bookmark here

“Please, don’t go! Let me handle everything! I’ll bring him back!” she continued to yell.Bookmark here

“What? Why, Sute? Why?”Bookmark here

“Please, Masuyo! Wasn’t my Spring Chirashizushi good?!” she stared at Masuyo, the emotionless eyes turned into sad ones, “The Cassava bread was bad as well? I can make them better!”Bookmark here

“Sute, what the hell are you talking about?!" Bookmark here

“We don’t have to love each other, but can our relationship be like this? Can’t we be at least good coworkers? Are you able to not hate me?” Bookmark here

“Ugh, you're just spitting nonsense." Bookmark here

“Masuyo…”Bookmark here

“I have to go now!” the boy shouted while straining his body to free itself from the girl.Bookmark here

“Please!”Bookmark here

“Why don’t you tell him, Sute?” the female voice came from someone standing before them.Bookmark here

“W-What…?” Masuyo faintly recognized the voice.Bookmark here

“Mo… Kaira! What are you doing out in this rain?!” Sute’s eyes widened as she looked at the woman.Bookmark here

“I should be the one saying it.” Kaira approached the lying Sute, using her umbrella to cover the girl, “You’re young, but it doesn’t prevent you from being ill. And it doesn’t excuse you fighting Masuyo-kun.”Bookmark here

“But…”Bookmark here

“No ‘but’. If you’re that afraid of him finding out, you should’ve kept it better instead of cooking for him.”Bookmark here

“...” Sute looked to the ground, downcast, “But he’ll hate me…”Bookmark here

“You can’t know for sure until you tell him, Sute. But it takes a glance at his face to notice he’s already mad at you. Looks like it’s because you keep preventing him from achieving his goal.”Bookmark here

Masuyo glanced at the two, dumbfounded, “W-What are you talking about?!” he glanced at Sute and Kaira.Bookmark here

“C’mon, Sute, tell him. Greet him like you were supposed to. After all, he’s the one that deserves to know, right?”Bookmark here

Still perplexed, Masuyo focused his attention on the girl, who hesitated for a moment and glanced at the woman beside her. Sute’s eyes maintained some tears, but she looked directly at Masuyo and uttered with difficulty:Bookmark here

“Hello, Masuyo Hirano. It’s a pleasure to meet you… My name is… my real name is Sute…. Sute Nakai.”Bookmark here

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AfterwordBookmark here

Yep. That’s the end of it (at least volume 1).Bookmark here

Hi to anyone reading, this is the author, Kerry Kamiya. I just wanted to say a few things, it’ll be more like an Afterword for the entire MAL x HF contest, to be honest.Bookmark here

Choosing to write two novels at the same time when I had never written anything before was a risky gambit, but I’m glad I did it. Writing them forced me to learn and improve at all times because the two stories are so wildly different, but I really wanted both of them to have a shot, so I gave it my all, and hopefully, it showed up. Bookmark here

Regarding thanks, I believe I said it all in my other novel’s Afterword, but I’ll repeat it quickly: I thank my two friends B. Spark and Petr Nask, who each helped me with the novels in their own way, I’d like to thank MAL and HF for the opportunity, and I’d like to thank anyone that gave one of my novels a bit of attention. Thank you all!.Bookmark here

If anyone enjoyed it, please let me know, I’d really appreciate that. Goodbye!Bookmark here

Real Aire
Kerry Kamiya
You can resume reading from this paragraph.