Chapter 34:

Chapter 34: Get Out of My Way!

Becoming A Seiyuu? I'm In!

“It wasn’t a mere guess. I could see that Kenji-san dislikes us. Or to be more precise, he wanted us to not accept Fuku-san’s offer to be their voice actors. I could say he wanted the attention to be concentrated solely on him, for successfully founded a few promising voice casts. I don’t know if he hates Fuku-san, but if he did, why they built the company then?” – Aki.Bookmark here

He could not think straight. He did not know where his sanity has gone to that the thought of running away enlarged the longer he stood there. The script in his hand shook, denoting his shivers upon an overwhelming emotion from inside. Lines of dialogues was originally recognizable, yet he could not read them as how he used to be. Or to be more precise, he failed to figure out what the content was. Bookmark here

Vague eye sight, palpitating breathing, trembling limbs, doubting mind, wavering heart. In conclusion, cowardice. Aki was about to drop the script off his hand when Fuku shouted his name from the spectator benches, startling the others as well. Kenji at the jury table eyed Fuku for overly pampering his apprentice. Another two juries were a scriptwriter and the director of anime movie <Hush>, also the one Miyu had an audition earlier. On Kenji’s request, they stayed a little longer to evaluate Aki’s play. Bookmark here

Yes. It was way too much. Mura and Ishi complained continuously. Even Miyu stated his discouragement over Kenji’s drastic decision. Aki was a newbie, and to act in front of an anime movie producer was more to weighting him down. Voice actors would naturally participate in auditions like Miyu and Nae, but in Aki’s case, it was not a real audition – Kenji was challenging him to falter his fighting spirit. Bookmark here

A few years back, an eleven years old Aki was inspired to be a voice actor after he was moved by one of them, and his ambition peaked as he has encountered that voice actor for the first time in his life. A man of concern and kindness despite the acknowledgment, Aki adored such personality on Fuku. Therefore, he wanted to be like him, and to achieve that, he must work hard. Bookmark here

Even though his parents rejected his wish, he still grasped any opportunity to learn on voice acting. Putting aside his shame, he looked for every single resource he could, even humiliating himself in front of third-years; Kishi and Ito. His hard work paid off when Mori’s animation <0001> won the first prize in the competition, which tinkered his spirit to learn more. Bookmark here

What am I doing here in the first place? In the middle of painful reminisce, that one question penetrated his daydream. He huffed, not in panic but desperately catching his breath again. Little by little, he could perceive someone among the spectators called him. The sight of Tori flailing his arm to alert him finally came to his range of view. Bookmark here

I am away from them? Aki stared down to his hand, holding a copy of script. On the upper part of the first page was written <Hush>, its title, and Aki immediately comprehended the situation he was in. His mind recollected the incident several minutes back. Bookmark here

The first person he could re-imagine in the recollection was Kenji, Fuku’s partner in the company. Kenji instructed him to have a battle between Aki and Nae, one of the company’s precious voice actor, also the one Kenji had his faith on. Aki has witnessed how dreadfully persuasive Nae’s play was. As the result, he got too deep into the character and dark memories manifested itself to replace his consciousness. Bookmark here

“Aki,” Fuku snatched a microphone from the jury table and talked to Aki through it, “Please listen to me. You’re holding a script – Miyu-kun’s script. It’s a copy, but please do not wrinkle it. Go to page 5 and read the dialogue with the name Shoya. Miyu-kun read the ninth page, so the gap between both of you will be far and you won’t tend to imitate him.”Bookmark here

Fuku was talking to Aki. A real person named Fuku was setting his eyes on him. He stared at the elder back, in massive contemplation between nodding in agreement to his instruction or just do it in his own way. Tori beside Fuku had the urge to run to get Aki in his arms. He knew, fully aware, that Aki has accidentally dove into the sea of qualms. Bookmark here

While the watchers were anticipating Aki’s performance, especially the mocking Kenji, Aki raised his hand, thumbing up. He did not smile, his lips could not twitch, but his solemn face reassured him that he would grab Kenji’s challenge. Bravely. His focus concentrated in the mentioned line. Bookmark here

An overwhelming silence enveloped them wholly. Tori could hear his own heart beating fast, as if he rode a roller coaster. Fuku’s seriousness halted even Miyu to accost him for some comments.Bookmark here

Hey.Bookmark here

Aki began with one word, purposely applying his low tenor tone. From gluing his gaze on the script, his sight relocated to the spectators, scaring them. Bookmark here

Who are you, to be honest?Bookmark here

Everyone could see Aki’s pupils were moving along the line-up of viewers. Probably including the juries. Bookmark here

How could you do this to me,” Aki’s voice cracked, remarking them that he was about to weep, “Just who are you that everyone listen to you? You can’t even listen to people.Bookmark here

“Kenji-san,” one of the jury leant and whispered, “Isn’t that dialogue the part when that Shoya boy yelled at the deaf girl?” Bookmark here

“Yeah, I know,” Kenji’s smirk faded by time. “Why with that?”Bookmark here

“Nothing. I just think it’s contrary to my expectation while writing this,” the jury puckered his lips in wonder. “I even put three exclamation marks there to denote Miyu that Shoya is shouting his lung out.”Bookmark here

Kenji did not reply to the jury’s opinion. He watched Aki’s play keenly and paid the least attention to the commentary. However, the jury was right – He remembered Miyu basically screamed while acting that line out. Why did Aki not do the same?Bookmark here

I thought you could understand me,” Aki continued. Obviously he violated the script notation. “You are the only one staying by my side. Why are you leaving me now?Bookmark here

“Aki is implying his own style.” Tori heard Fuku commenting beside him. Arm crossed, yet he smiled out of proud. “He’s abandoning the necessity in the script and do it in his own way.”Bookmark here

“Necessity?” Tori was puzzled at Fuku’s claim. Bookmark here

“The fifth page is mainly about that Shoya boy scolding the heroine for not listening to him. Well, she did despite her disability, but that Shoya boy thought she wasn’t. You do know what I mean by her listening to him, right?” Miyu calmly explained to Tori. He was the actual actor of Shoya boy after all. Bookmark here

Mura gulped. “Do you mean Aki neglected the script detail in the line?” Bookmark here

While Tori was digesting the description, he noticed Aki’s sullen eyes fixated on them. Or possibly he was staring blankly at Kenji. His assumption turned out to be true because without delay, Aki’s tears trickled down his cheeks. Looking closely, Aki never hiccupped, sobbed, or wailed. They could detect that Aki was about to cry, but no noise produced from his flowing tears. Bookmark here

Aki was weeping, really, quietly. Bookmark here

“This boy,” Kenji snarled to himself, “is something.”Bookmark here

Surprisingly, Aki put down the script, but his gaze was still on Kenji. Kenji and the spectators finally realized one thing – Aki did not even re-act the dialogue – or maybe he did, but just a few words from the dialogue. Bookmark here

It has been my hope to contribute something for you. I want you to stay by my side. I only have you in my life. My parents,” Aki paused to recompose his breath, “I shouldn’t even mention of them here.”Bookmark here

No smile. No sneer. No even eye bawling. Just Aki with his rolling down tears and flat-toned tenor voice. The sensation lingered across the Audition Room envisioned Aki’s truest feeling regarding his dream. Bookmark here

Kenji buried himself into his chair, denying his defeat. He could accuse Aki for being unprofessional. He could claim that Aki violated the script. He could even fail Aki in the impromptu audition. He could do anything he would. But why didn’t he? Just a few words would stop Aki from pursuing this voice acting industry, right?Bookmark here

Nevertheless, he could not. Even though the dialogue was mixed with Aki’s spontaneous line, the portrayed emotion was splendidly delivered. Aki still gave off sorrowful, melancholic, and heartbroken feeling though he did not follow the script entirely. He successfully applied those negativity into his acting, and even relayed it to other people. Bookmark here

Kenji caught a glance of Nae among the spectators. Nae seemed flustered and gawking, as if he disbelieved the end product of the guy named Aki. It must be it – Nae acknowledged Aki’s ability to voice act. Bookmark here

One person Kenji could not collide gaze with. He could swear that one person was grinning in satisfaction. That person has been pestering on him to take in Aki and The Seiyuu Club as a part of their company, but Kenji’s pride declined him. That person had no choice but to prepare them while Kenji was not aware.Bookmark here

Gasp! So it was his plan all these while! Kenji has just grasped the whole situation. Fuku has constructed a training schedule for The Seiyuu Club before he invited them to the company. Assigning Mura to teach Aki more on voice acting (multi-level voice), Tashikani to assist Aki on singing (tone distinguisher and control), exercises and sports (expanding lung capacity), and appearing online as utaite (publicity). By then, they have practically readied themselves for signing contract and, done! Bookmark here

Only then Kenji shifted to the smiling Fuku. Clenching his teeth in resentment, he realized that he would not be able to counter attack Fuku. He must come up with much better strategy so that Wave and Wood, Tashikani, and Aki would not debut as their official voice actors! They must be singers, and that was it!Bookmark here

Nae and Miyu were his fruitful effort. They were his pawns, his proud. Other than them, the other voice actors were still learning full-time in seiyuu school. Kenji secretly clenched his fists. No one could replace Nae and Miyu as top seiyuu in this company!Bookmark here

“You can stop now, Aki. Return the script to Miyu back,” Kenji monotonously stated after he sprung from his chair. “You can leave now.”Bookmark here

“Aren’t you going to announce who the winner is, Kenji-kun?” Fuku cheerily asked. Bookmark here

The back facing Kenji halted from making his way to the door. He silently grumbled. “Why should I? You know it already, right? Nae won.”Bookmark here

The spectators jolted simultaneously. Ishi had to hold Tori firmly to avoid the latter from shoving Kenji. Fuku saw all those reactions, yet he smiled. Slyly. Bookmark here

“I will take them as our voice actors, Kenji-kun,” Fuku provoked. Bookmark here

Kenji scratched the back of his head in groans. “Do whatever you want then.” Leaving everyone in perplex, Kenji’s mind rotated over wicked plan to stop Aki from agreeing to Fuku’s offer. Bookmark here

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