IT’S A BUS GET IN THE…
IT’S A BUS GET IN THE…
Together with House-Husband, Part 2, Chapter 9 (Interlude 1-1) – A Single Person’s Loneliness
Rain fell gently.
The sky visible from the room’s window was an expanse of ashen gray. The rain that had begun to fall since the day the three of us had gone to Shinto had continued unceasingly. The gloomy weather seemed to be dragging our moods with it. I let out a sigh and fell onto the living room sofa.
I rolled over, faced up, and looked around the living room without focusing on anything. My little sister, Sakura, was on the front sofa, sound asleep and breathing softly, clutching a cotton blanket. I had placed the blanket over her. Sakura could do the housework, but she really was still a child; falling asleep with your stomach poking out all the time is bad for your health. She exhausts herself doing her best for other people, so she always falls asleep like this. So it’s my job to protect Sakura, who tries her hardest.
“Eh heh heh…”
I smiled at Sakura’s happy looking face as she slept.
Today I looked over Sakura’s studies around noon, and then Sakura showed me how to make sweets. I patted Sakura on the head, who looked just a little frustrated at how much better I’ve gotten, and then the two of us cleaned… And so on.
Before I knew it, Archer was gone.
Remembering it made me angry again. Gaaah, I’m ticked off!
Recently… no, for the last few days, Archer had been rather strange. He was unusually kind. Archer’s the sort of guy who’s a total bully when I make the tiniest mistake, going “Ah, you did it again. Haven’t you made any progress?” and “Calm down a little and think of your surroundings. You’re not an animal, are you?” These last few days, however, even when I messed something up, he would help me. …It’s not that I’m not happy about it. Archer had always been, well…
He would watch over me silently until I did it myself. When I did, he would tell me “good job”, with a slightly mean look… That’s what he was like.
…It made me very happy, so it was fun to try my absolute hardest. Once in a while, he would stroke my head, and around my chest he would, ah… …Uuu! Who the heck cares about that stuff!
Anyway… Recently, it was like Archer had no time, somehow.
Today was the same. He would disappear out of nowhere. And when he got back, the two of use would get angry. Archer would look sorry. Then he would meaninglessly pat our heads and apologize.
…It’s not that I wasn’t happy. But… somehow, it felt different. It felt like Archer was somewhere far away.
I was in a foul mood. I was worried about Archer, different than usual. And I was worried… That my happiness might be broken.
It was the sound of the front door opening and closing.
Archer was back! After I jumped down from the sofa and put on my kitty slippers, I ran to the entryway. Just as I expected, Archer stood in the entrance, dripping wet.
At my face filled with anger, Archer again… Looked apologetic, and awkward.
“Where did you go!?”
“…Hmm. Ah, well… The church.”
The fleeting glimpse I caught of Archer’s expression was somehow… Heartbreaking. But I was still angry!
“Come on! Why didn’t you say a word to us!? Sakura was worried too!”
“Oh… Huh? Sakura… Too? Ohh, I see.”
Archer was in his element, his face brightening at capturing my slip of the tongue. …Ugh.
“I see, I see, so you were worried too, huh?”
“…Ye-, yeah I was. I was worried! Got a problem with that!?”
I’m a kid, a kid, kid! I lost when I got worried! Stupid dummy!
…But, for whatever reason, even if it was manufactured, this conversation, with its inconsequential back and forth, put me a little at ease.
Hoping just a little for more of the casual conversation I wished for, I looked up at Archer’s face.
Archer gently stroked my head with his big hand. “Thank you…. I’m sorry for worrying you.” Archer apologized, his eyes full of all the kindness he could muster, and stepped pass my side.
It was too lonely. I hate it.
I kicked Archer’s shin with all my might.
Archer jumped up and down, clutching his leg. It was a kick based on the fake Chinese martial arts I had learned from Kirei. How do you like them apples!? I nimbly distanced myself from the enemy, pulled my eyelid down and stuck out my tongue as hard as I could, and then retreated back to the living room.
In the corner of my eye, I could see Archer’s dumbfounded and troubled face, but who cares? I crawled under Sakura’s blanket and decided I would pretend I was sleeping.
“Fwaah!? Wh- what is it, Nee-san?”
“Your older sister’s in a bad mood! Comfort me with that maternal breast of yours!”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about… Geez…”
Even while she said that, my little sister patted my head and affirmed her affection. Caught between her flat chest and the gently wafting scent of soap, I fell into dreamland.
Together With House Husband, Part Two, Chapter 9. Interlude 1-1.
In ill humor.
A kind person who they passed the time with, together. But recently, they just can’t see eye-to-eye.
Notes after the Jump.
Looks set for March of 2010, with Marvelous Ent. as the production company. I’m not too familiar with Image Epoch outside of Arc Rise Fantasia, so I can’t say much aside from Kazuya Niinou (EO and 7th Dragon) is producer. Nasu’s doing Original Scenario and Takeuchi Character Design Supervision though.
(ps the date’s actually pretty hard to make out, as is the producer, but i’m fairly sure of it)
Together with House-Husband, Part 2, Chapter 8 – The Wind of Battle
Archer crossed paths with the firefighters and personnel initiating rescue efforts inside the hotel as he went outside.
The site of the incident, yellow lines reading “keep out” were stretched across the surroundings of the Fuyuki Department Store, and their were countless patrol cars and ambulances stopped in the area. Around the circumference of the site were customers who had escaped the store and curious onlookers, while the area itself was awash with cars trapped due to the congestion; the difficulty the police and fire department must have had in coming this far was apparent.
Archer searched for his masters away from the marked area. They were smart girls. There was no way they were in the middle of the congestion. Things that would stand out and act as a sign- in the street, a water fountain, a statue, a patrol car… There they were.
Two small girls with uneasy expressions stood still next a policeman and his car.
Archer called out in a loud voice. At his voice, the two’s faces began to shine like baby birds sensing their parent, and they both looked towards Archer.
The nearby policeman, startled at Archer’s lack of clear nationality and dirty appearance, put himself on guard.
“Ah, excuse me, who might you be!?”
He stood between the confused Archer and the children, but they ran around him and embraced Archer’s leg. They grinned at the petrified man with mischievous smiles, and both, in a loud voice, said…
“He’s our housekeeper, and our guardian!”
In front of the police officer, his eyes widening, the three exchanged glances and laughed.
Beyond the barrier was a vacant storeroom in the department store that had been remodeled and made into a magus’s base. To hide a tree, one must put it in a forest.
Fuyuki Department Store, a gathering place of many people and an aged structure, was an ideal quick substitute for a stronghold. Even if he decided to forgo it, there existed a supply of humans to act as a sacrifice.
But being found out was a different matter. A fight between magi occurring openly in public would be an incident they would avoid, well aware of the wrath of the Mages Association. When it began, he had no choice but to flee here. Consequently, in order for the master here to hide his own presence, he positioned a barrier to let people pass in front of the base, unaware of its existence. But that barrier had been destroyed as a result of the battle of whomever had enacted it here. Archer turning one-hundred-and-eighty degrees, back the way he came, was the greatest proof of all. It was completely excessive for camouflage.
And neither of the two mages who had battled there had been found. It was apparent after rescue efforts had gone on for over an hour.
The destroyed barrier and camp, the large incident… These all pointed towards one fact: these were ruins, already abandoned. The magi, for the sake of the next battle, had switched to the riverside.
“Archer, are you okay?”
“Are you hurt?”
With worried faces, the two stared at him together. Archer lifted them into his arms and held them close.
“Wah!? Wh-, what’s wrong?”
“Ahh…? Uh, umm…”
They were confused at the suddenness, but upon seeing Archer, his brow furrowed and a look of pain on his face, their expressions stiffened.
“Ah… Wh-, where does it hurt!? Hey, are you okay, Archer!?”
“Uh, umm…did something painful happen!?”
Their worries missed the mark, but… To Archer, it was enough.
“…Thank you, you two.”
Unaware of why they were even being thanked, they both made troubled faces, but when they understood that Archer was apparently uninjured, they leaned on his shoulders, relieved.
…Thank you…for everything.
Choking back the words he could not say, Archer gazed up at the sky. It appeared that strong winds had brought dark clouds to cover the sky that had once been so very clear in noon.
The hints at the fierce battle that would soon begin right here, in the streets of Fuyuki left Archer feeling rather unsettled.
Yes… of course I understand.
I will protect you two… till the very end.
Yes, it was indeed beginning. The symphony of seven servants, a battle of pariahs.
The Holy Grail War.
Together With House Husband, Part 2, Chapter 8.
Traces of the battle between mages in Fuyuki.
They signified the opening of the mad conflict to begin in this land. The deluded struggle that had gone on for two hundred long years. The Holy Grail War.
The countdown to their parting has begun. Archer resolves to protect the small masters he had restored time and warmth to as a human.
End of Together With House Husband, Part Two, Prologue.
Together with House-Husband, Part 2, Chapter 7 – The Road That Must Be Taken
*Wheoo wheooo wheooo*
The sound of the fire engine’s siren came far from the ground below. He ascended the stairs, the sound right on his back.
His iron boots treaded the linoleum floor. He was on the seventh floor, reserved for employees and officials. The control area of the department store off limits to regular customers. Having finished treating the injured throughout the sixth floor, Archer had cloaked himself in his battle uniform, and had headed off to the seventh floor, the origin of the incident.
Archer became confident that it was not an accident. It was an explosion with a shockwave large enough to rock the building. Having experienced numerous fields of war, Archer understood minutely, with regards to myriad varieties of weapons and ordinance, the amount of power one could contain, and what kind of ordinance would create how much of an explosion. He knew, at the very least, even a freak explosion of office equipment could not create such a large blast. Furthermore, the idea of a department store that had a pinpoint explosive device on the executive floor was ridiculous.
The staff floor was deathly still. The fallen plants and the bundles of documents, fluttering and scattered about in the hall, communicated the extent of the chaos involved in the employee evacuation.
The sorcery activated, Archer performed an analysis of the floor. From a map assembled in 3-D, he ran a simulation of the ideal sequence of destinations, and began to run through the hall.
Based on what he had seen of the lower floors, he could guess that the center of the explosion was the area around the building’s northern emergency exits. Based on his hypothesis, he moved towards the area, checking the rooms long the way.
Vital Reactions: None, none, none.
The workers appeared to have already left the floor. Archer recalled that the volunteers in the sixth floor rescue efforts had include people dressed in the uniforms of the department store. It was possible that the employees from this floor had been among them.
“Some ‘professional’ I am.”
Looking back at the extending scorch marks in the hall before him, Archer erased the smile from his face. The hypocenter was close, it appeared. He was a mix of moderate tension and quiet confidence. After adjusting his condition, Archer stepped out into the center of the explo——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–
Archer’s foot stepped on the floor. The floor of the corridor. It was a normal corridor, missing even the slightest burn mark.
“What… is this?”
Strange. The scene before his eyes gave him an uneasy feeling. The sensation sharpened. Doubt seeped into his consciousness.
Where was I going, and why?
“…I was going to the center of the blast, in order to investigate its cause.”
It was a clear goal… But his feet were standing in a different place than his goal.
“…My awareness went blank for a moment.”
Calming his emotions, he recalled the floor map he had created through the “Structural Analysis”. Currently, he was in a room he had passed on his way to the blast center. In other words, he had turned a hundred-and-eighty degrees, and had turned away from where the blast was. This was…
“A method of clearing out people… A type of bounded field that manipulates awareness?”
A repellent. A type of magical barrier constructed on the ground itself. It served to move people unconsciously and deter entry to a special location. Humans within range of its effect were incapable of recognizing the location.
He shivered. The word that had come to him so routinely made him tremble.
He cautiously turned his head. Clutching at his consciousness, he gazed down the hall that continued before him. But even with Archer’s superhuman eyesight, he could not “perceive” any further. No, something resisted his efforts to perceive it. It was unmistakably sprcery. A magical barrier that did not allow people to approach a special location.
In Fuyuki… In the land managed by the Tohsakas, there was sorcery other than their own in use in a public place. He could conceive that the fact this denoted was strongly connected to the incident that had occurred here. It was…
Archer made a lonely smile for one moment, and then glared at the area that denied his perception. He made a strong autosuggestion to himself that “I must advance further”.
Yes, because he himself was here, that was something that had always meant to have occurred. It was inevitable.
Shaking off the interference to his awareness, Archer took one step forward. Even if that step mean he had parted with someone important.
Together With House Husband, Part 2, Chapter 7.
The conflict that has long continued.
There were people who called for the sacrifice of that body, that blood. They concealed a strong purpose in their hearts and chose the sword in order to fulfill their wish.
The name of that battle was…
Together with House-Husband, Part 2, Chapter 6 – Intersection
“It’s alright, it’s alright. Here, doesn’t this make it hurt a little less?”
While patting the head of the girl sobbing and complaining of pain, the red haired boy tied a piece of wood to her leg and finished treating her.
“How is it? Does it still hurt?”
“It huuurts! Mommy! Daddy!”
Somehow, the efforts of the boy to console her had made her cries grow even louder. Growing more and more bewildered, the boy waved his hands nervously.
“I’m here to save you, kids.”
Just as the boy was about to burst into tears, Archer raised his voice from behind him. The boy was so surprised at the sudden call he sprung up five centimeters from the ground.
“Wh-, who are you, Mister!?”
“Mister…huh… Well, I’m a firefighter. I’ve come to help you two.”
Archer smiled to hopefully put them at ease. Upon hearing that, the eyes of the boy and girl regained a glimmer of hope.
“Ahh… Can I see my daddy?”
“Huh? …Yeah. It’s alright. You’ll see your daddy. I’m sure he’s looking for you too.”
After he had confirmed that there were many injured but no dead, Archer felt confident answering so. When she heard that, the girl toppled over, as if a thread had been cut.
“Ah, uwah! A-, are you okay?”
Archer crouched and lightly examined the girl’s physical condition.
“It’s fine. She just lost consciousness at being relieved from a state of extreme stress.”
“…Oh, okay. Phew…”
The boy then also sank to the floor.
Just to be safe, Archer also gave a quick look over the body of the boy. His jacket, perhaps because it had been used in treating the girl’s leg, was torn and battered, but he didn’t appear to have any type of physical injury.
“Okay then. Did you treat her?”
The girl’s left foot had been treated in a surprisingly proper manner. It was rather impressive.
“Huh? Oh, yeah, I’ve always been, well… Good at finding and fixing what’s wrong. I got interested in helping treat my friends when they’re injured and stuff, and I read a bunch of books and studied by copying the Boy Scout leaders and stuff like that.”
The boy proudly rubbed his nose.
“Ooh. You’re quite the young man.”
It was truly impressive. He was a child about the same age as Rin. There were still traces of mischief in his face, but the curious boy had a somehow mature air.
“Heh heh… It’s nothing much. More importantly, I wanna make sure this girl reunites with her mom and dad soon. I’ll take her.”
The boy shouted once, and with a hop, stood up, carrying the sleeping girl on his back.
“Oh, can I come along?”
“Mister, you’re in the fire department, right? …Huh? But you’re not wearing a uniform. Are you really a firefighter?”
He showed considerable discernment, or rather, the question cut to the heart of the matter. Until now Archer had forcibly gained approval through his actions, but at a glance he was a normal person.
“Well, something like a firefighter.”
He answered with a wry smile, and the boy consented with a shrug.
“Then I’ll carry this girl. Since you can do it a lot better than I can, Mister, you go save more people in the meantime… ‘Cause, well…It looks like you can do stuff I can’t. You made her stop crying, and calm down…”
Smiling bitterly and gazing at the girl’s sleeping face, the boy included several bits of self-derision.
“So, you go save the people who might still be here, Mister. I’ll do what I can. …Okay?”
“…I guess so…”
Slightly amazed, Archer looked at the boy’s face. That boy’s smiling face held a strength far beyond his years.
“Alright. I’ll do what I can do.”
“Okay, then good luck, Mister!”
“…I’d like it if you stop with the whole ‘Mister’ thing, but… alright.”
The two exchanged glances and laughed.
One one hand, there was Archer, and on the other, the boy carrying the girl on his back.
In order for each to accomplish what they must, they began running. Running down the path they have to take.
Midway, Archer stopped moving and gazed in the direction the boy had left. He hadn’t asked for his name.
“…Well, that’s fine, I guess.”
Storing the impressive boy in a corner of his mind, Archer ran through the restaurant floor. He searched for people seeking rescue.
Together With House Husband Part 2, Chapter 6
The red haired boy.
An unusually mature, mysterious young boy leaves a strong impression and then parts with the Knight of the Bow. Their paths have not yet crossed.
Normally I put out doujinshi here, and most of what I do is Type-Moon related, so here’s a nice fresh breath of change!
Shinakoi is a shounen kendo battle manga that revolves around Touyama Sakura and two other guys, Sakaki and Ryuunosuke. Sakura’s pretty normal, gifted in kendo and all that, but Sakaki and Ryuunosuke are like BATMAN ANGSTY because Sakaki’s teacher (who is also Ryuunosuke’s mom) died at the hands, of one Narukami Koharu (i’m guessing) who’s if I were to speculate is pretty much final boss material.
So tl;dr Sakura is the heroine, Ryuunosuke is on a batman “PAAAAAAAAAAARENTS DEAD” trip, Sakaki follows him and Koharu is the final boss.
Sorry for that now have some delicious cake.
Cokematic you’re paying for my new set of eyes.
Watch at your own risk.
Edit: 2nd video for reference.
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