- *** Visit <http://nakulas.blogspot.com/2013/04/kyoukai-no-kanata-volume-1-progress.html> for more information.
- Kuriyama Mirai. She... is kind of a weird girl.
- She's a quiet girl; you can tell just from looking at her. If there's anything distinctive about her, it's the way her pale hair falls over the gentle curves of her shoulders. That, and her red-rimmed glasses. She's small-built, and she doesn't have much in the way of curves. You know how well-developed young women tend to have assets? Sadly, she doesn't. She just enrolled at our school as a freshman, making her a year my junior. If her birthday hasn't come around yet, she should be 15 years old. Seeing as we're in high school, there's nothing unusual about me being acquainted with a girl in the year below me. That said, this particular encounter... was a peculiar one. One that I don't think anyone besides me could possibly experience.
- I distinctly remember it happening shortly after spring break, back when we still weren't quite used to our new classrooms.
- Which means that it was early April. It began with a coincidence.
- Once classes were over on that day, I hauled myself over to the literature club's room and spent just under an hour buried in a book. After that, I gathered my belongings and exited the school. If I had been a minute earlier or later, we probably wouldn't have coincided. The next day, all the local papers would've had an article titled "High School Girl Leaps to Her Death" buried somewhere in the human interest section. And I would've read that and thought, "A suicide at our school? I hope they don't sensationalize it. That'd be a pain." Then, I'd sigh. And that would've been the end of it. There wouldn't have been any reason for me to care about it.
- Dictionaries would probably define it as "the act of putting an end to one's own life", or something like that. That's an act I don't think I'd ever attempt. Not because of any sort of moral objection, though. No, there's a much simpler reason I'd never try to kill myself. Sure, there might come a time when I intentionally fail to commit suicide, as a cry for attention. But the idea of committing suicide with the intent to kill myself is simply absurd. I just can't see anything appealing about it.
- That day.
- The sky was vast, clear, and blue.
- I happened to look up at the new school building - and I saw a girl on the roof. A girl who looks wonderful in glasses. I squinted to get a better look. When I saw her ribbon, I could tell from its color that she was a first-year. She had gotten past the safety railing and was standing there stock still, with a vacant expression on her face. If she were to take another step forward, gravity would take over and send her hurtling to the ground. She was in a dangerous place.
- At this point, I'd like to call your attention to a certain matter.
- Broadly speaking, there are two ways for narratives to progress.
- One is for the protagonist to be an active participant in the story, thereby helping further it.
- The other is for the protagonist to be a passive participant in the story, in which case he will be carried along as the story progresses.
- If I were the protagonist of some tale, I would definitely be the latter sort. Even so, my nerves weren't nearly steely enough for me to just ignore what was going on. I tossed my bag away and headed for the rooftop. It probably took me five minutes to get there. I threw open a door that read "No Access" and leapt onto the roof. I managed to grab onto her small figure from behind.
- She hadn't jumped off yet. As I clutched my chest, I started talking to her.
- I don't want to brag about how I talked her down, so I'll spare you the details; basically, I just remember saying something like "People who look good in glasses mustn't die. And you look wonderful in glasses." That was how I felt, and that's the gist of what I told her, plain and simple. Come to think of it, I might have started by telling her about how useful glasses were, and ended up telling her about the history of how glasses were invented. And then, I told her one last thing.
- "Basically, I love glasses."
- "This is unpleasant," she replied. It was a harsh rejection.
- She jumped over the railing, which was many times her height. That was a high jump that clearly was not interested in obeying the laws of physics. As she jumped, a dark-red blade-like thing formed in her left hand. I didn't understand what was happening, so I just stood there and stared.
- A moment later, the dark-red blade shot out like a spear and drilled through my abdomen. It all happened so quickly that I couldn't even cry out in pain. I began to violently vomit up blood, so I suppose it must have pierced my digestive organs That was obviously a fatal wound. It took everything I had just to stay conscious through the intense pain.
- "Too bad you had to deal with me."
- So declared the girl in a quiet voice. Her eyes were terrifyingly cold.
- A sudden act of violence.
- That's nothing unusual, though. This sort of thing happens to me all the time.
- She remained poised for action as she stared at me. My blood dripped off the length of her dark-red blade onto the concrete. Now that's something you don't see on the roof every day. At the very least, this didn't happen on the school grounds all that frequently. Anyway... that girl - Kuriyama Mirai - was no ordinary human. How did I know that? Well, no ordinary human can create a blade out of nothing. For the time being, we ought to disregard the possibility of her being absurdly skilled in the art of legerdemain.
- In situations like this - when you meet somebody who isn't an ordinary human - people like me have two choices. One: to exhibit plain and obvious hostility towards that person; or two: to feel a strong affinity for that person. I always choose the latter option. I never hesitate to thank them just for existing; it's almost like it's my sworn duty.
- "...um, so..."
- I put on as gentle a smile as I could manage. Then, I pointed to the dark-red blade that was still sticking through my abdomen. If I had looked down at the blood dripping everywhere, I would've ended up with a sour look on my face - so I avoided looking down.
- "Could you... do something about... this?"
- She sounded positively dumbfounded. That's not surprising. Why did I think that? Well, if I were an ordinary human, I would've certainly passed out from blood loss by now. Well, that's not quite it. When she figured out what I really was, she was even more astonished. I put on as kind an expression as I could manage.
- A pause.
- "Who on earth _are_ you?"
- A look of anguish appeared on her face. There was a bizarre tension in the air, with my blood splattered all over her.
- "That's what _I_ want to know."
- And that's how I met Kuriyama Mirai. After a first contact like this, the odds that our relationship would be restricted to this one incident were about as low as the odds of getting caught up in a murder investigation at a roadside inn. Cripes, what a pain.
Kyoukai no Kanata - Prologue [English]
nakulas Apr 24th, 2013 22,862 Never
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