Chapter 1:

Prologue - Overture

I Sang Karaoke Every Weekend and Became a Max Level Bard in a Fantasy World

"Name and age?"

"Miyu Seki, 24 years old."

"Miss Seki, I'll get to the point. We aren't really in need of anyone with your skill set. Advanced mathematics was it? That isn't something a law firm really needs. An accountant or analytics, sure, but why don't you sell us on yourself. Why do you think you would be an asset."

That was the part where I always choked. My memory is one of my strong points- I could memorize just about anything. But as for my actual skills, they were mostly worthless. I had nothing really worth putting myself forward for. I suppose that lack of confidence is why I couldn't get a job.

Another interview with no results. To add onto it all, my savings have nearly run out. I'll probably have to move back to the countryside with my parents. I hadn't really seen them since I moved to Tokyo for middle school. I wonder if they still think of me as their daughter.

Why did I take up advanced mathematics? Memorizing formulas was really easy for me, so I figured I should do it since I was somewhat good at it. It wasn't something I enjoyed or particularly liked or anything. It was just something I knew I could do. There was one thing I did like- something I could actually call a hobby: Karaoke. Ever since middle school I had been going to this karaoke place near my apartment on the weekends. It wasn't anywhere super nice, but they knew me here. It made me feel at home somehow when I visited somehow. Sometime during my second year of middle school, I decided to challenge myself and my memory.

I learned every song the karaoke bar had to offer.

The words, the rhythm, the melody, I memorized all of it. Every time new songs got added, I would learn them as well, even foreign songs. I memorized the lyrics even if I didn't know what they meant! What? No, it wasn't a waste of time. Waste of money? Well, maybe. That being said, I didn't really have the looks to be an idol or anything. It was my hobby, and that's the important thing.

"Welcome back Miss Seki, did you keep dry? Looks like it's starting to storm."

"Yeah, thankfully I brought my umbrella today."

"The usual hour?"

"Nah, make it two. Got some steam to blow off."

"Alright. We added some new songs today, are you going to go for the high scores again?"

"Of course!" New songs! That's just what I need to take my mind off of this failu- set back. My funds are starting to run low though.

I got to my room, the same one I always get. It was on the outer wall of the first floor, and even with the sound-proofing you could still occasionally hear traffic outside. The couch in here probably has an imprint from how often I've sat in the same spot to look at the song list like I'm doing now. Sure enough, they added 20 new songs! It would be cutting my two hours really close to get them all in... but if I did them at 1.5 speed, I could get them all done and give myself a bit of a challenge as well!

"Alright! Let's do this!"

I ended up having to get an extra hour extension to my time, but I managed to perfect them all... those virtual idol songs are always harder for some reason, but I can even match up to a virtual singer's prowess! That's exactly the motivation I needed! Tomorrow I go out and apply for more jobs! I can at least get equal terms with AI on singing, so making coffee should be a piece of cake! I don't care if it doesn't fit with my degree or if I would have a high schooler as my manager.

Without the music playing I finally noticed a noise. Rain. It was coming down really hard now that I could even hear it in here. Well, I guess it's a good thing I brought my umbrella after all. I began to gather my things that were scattered about the room. This room sometimes felt like a second home to me. "Ah, my much do I have left after that extension?" I peeked inside. "Oh, guess it's bread and mayonnaise for dinner tonight." With a sigh I put the wallet into my handbag and was about to head out the door, when there was a sudden sound from behind me.

That can't be right, there's no way the rain could be that- eh?

A truck came bursting through the wall of the karaoke parlor opposite the door. Was this my punishment for that extra hour? My reaction time wasn't fast enough to open the door and run. I tried to duck, but I knew that it would not do me any good.

"Mom, dad, Kami-sama... I'm sorry I couldn't get a job."

My last words were kinda lame, but then again they weren't really my last words. Because the next thing I knew, I opened my eyes to find myself under a sprawling tree atop a hill, looking down at luscious fields of grass and flowers.

Roman Velvet
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