(369) Responsibility to be Liked
I exited the bath.
Haru and Carol were still in the bath, so I played Reversi with Sheena No.3 as I waited.
Since we bought the board normally from Mallegory rather than it being something Miri brought with her in her item bag, it was made of metal and the price was rather steep.
Granted there were magnets embedded in the stone but for some reason, the stones were not black and white but instead, it was a red stone colored black on its other face.
The owner claimed that this was the original Reversi, but Carol said that it was probably because red paint is cheaper than white paint.
Incidentally, that match of Reversi… was not fun at all.
“Three consecutive wins for Sheena No.3! Champion!”
I couldn’t win.
It was a complete loss.
Perhaps because she still retained traces of being an Automata (High Performance Machine Doll)?
This game of Reversi could reveal the character of the person playing.
Haru attacks fast. But her attacks are weak.
It didn’t mean that she was a muscle brain but rather because she was susceptible to traps.
She didn’t find it vexing to lose to me and was rather proud but she typically feels reluctant to end a game halfway through. She wouldn’t voice it out but her tail would say so. Due to that, we have played Reversi for more than an hour so I decided not to play it before our nightly activities.
Carol was slightly better than me. She was the type of person who thinks carefully and uses a fairly solid approach. Also, Carol tends to chat during Reversi games. She uses Reversi not as a game but as a tool of communication.
Pionia and Neete were as strong as Sheena No.3. It was impossible for me to win.
Pionia would lay down stones, win and leave. There was no room for any talking.
Neete would suggest that the loser will have to strip. She was so persistent that I accepted it with the condition that the limit was until our undergarments which was when that Neete deliberately lost. I was able to win even when I was desperately trying to lose. Then, she took off her clothes. A flasher – or rather, she was tempting me.
I seriously thought that it would have been dangerous if she had a little more adult body.
“Do you want another match?”
I proposed as I was clearing the stones on the board and returning them to the case (The official rule of My World was that the person who loses the game was supposed to clear the stones).
I thought that she would surely get into the game but surprisingly Sheena No.3 shook her head.
“Let’s stop. Master, not only are you weak, you can’t beat Sheena No.3 if your head is in the clouds.”
“I’m being absent-minded? There’s no way …”
I couldn’t say that she was wrong.
Was it okay to play leisurely while Mallegory was in such a situation? I thought to myself but that was a task for the government officials of Mallegory.
However, after hearing Flute’s desperate wish and considering the devil race what was involved in this incident, was it really okay for me to do nothing? Was there nothing I could do? I couldn’t help but think.
All I could do was dispel the curse whenever a person afflicted with the curse is found.
“Master understands the situation to some extent desu. Are you thinking if you can do something desu?”
“Neete told me that I didn’t have to saddle myself with everything.”
“Is that so desu? If it’s Effie, the main character of NyaPeace, I’m sure… what would he do?”
Sheena No.3 seemed like she was about to say something good but the words didn’t come to mind.
Well, I knew what she meant, so I sighed and answered.
“Don’t equate me with anime characters. The anime and manga main characters have routes that can absolutely be solved planned from the very beginning. For example, in a detective novel, there won’t be a criminal who could commit a perfect crime and will always leave some kind of evidence behind. But in reality, it is difficult to find any evidence and it is rare for a single detective or police detective to solve a case on their own.”
“If you want to make that example, it’s rare for a detective to come across a murder every week desu.”
That was something that has been brought up thousands of times before so there was no need to say it now.
With that said, I couldn’t deny it strongly because I have been involved in some kind of incident in all the cities and countries I have visited.
“In short, unless God manipulates fate, an ordinary person can’t solve everything.”
In this case, God is the author and the scriptwriter.
“But Master is able to call upon God, isn’t it desu?”
Sheena No.3 could not see it as a metaphor.
“… Although strictly speaking it is goddesses?”
I could only refute the unexpected argument from Sheena No.3 with that.
Tet-sama said that the people from earth summoned to this world are existences meant to protect the world from the fate of destruction. That’s why I was transferred from Japan…
I’m the agent of the manipulation.
That said, I was not given any special mission to do and it seems that just by living freely I could save the world.
“I was only told to live freely… There was nothing about fate.”
“If Master wants to live freely, what does Master want to do desu?”
“I want to flirt with Haru and Carol.”
“Sheena No.3 will always be open to flirting with Master desu. Master loves Sheena No.3 after all.”
“Yes yes, I like you.”
“That’s so superficial it’s even harder than being rejected outright! End desu!”
Sheena No.3 said and acted like she was crying.
It made me remember when she told me that her hair was eaten by Centaur. Now, it’s restored beautifully.
It seemed she got tired of acting like she was crying as Sheena No.3 immediately looked into my eyes and asked.
“What does Sheena No.3 have to do to be held by Master desu?”
“Sheena No.3 loves Master. Sheena No.3 has been in love with Master since the day you fought against the Leviathan to save my life desu.”
“ … You called me an intruder and attacked me when I as in Deijima.”
“I don’t recall desu.”
It looked like this high performance cyborg was installed with the function to conveniently forget anything inconvenient.
“Master must take responsibility for saving Sheena No.3”
“A responsibility for saving huh …”
“Haven’t you been taking responsibility for saving the Dark-Elves?”
“Well, their circumstances were different. I saved them by my own will –”
In actual fact, the situations were the same.
Sheena No.3 was prepared to die in the southern island back then.
And I saved her because I wanted to.
And it was the same with Flute.
“To save until the very end if you want to save a person? To not stop midway – something like that?”
“Totally wrong desu.”
Sheena No.3 looked at me with an amazed look and shook her head.
I got a little angry seeing her make fun of me.
“Ha? You were the one who told me to take responsibility.”
“The responsibility I mentioned was Master’s responsibility to be liked desu. Sheena No.3 and the Dark-Elves love Master desu! So Master has the responsibility to answer to those feelings desu.”
“Taking responsibility to be liked by embracing everyone? What kind of harem manga is this?”
“Embracing the Dark-Elves and Sheena No.3 won’t get us pregnant so I recommend it to Master who hates the word responsibility desu.”
How did it come to me hating the word responsibility?
… Although I didn’t really like it.
“The topic has gone way off course! This conversation was about how I should live freely.”
I did think it was my bad for saying I wanted to spend my time flirting with Haru and Carol but I’ll push the responsibility to Sheena No.3 for now.
“I thought that I could do anything with the power obtained from Jobless cheat and Growth cheat. But it wasn’t true. Like in your case, the Leviathan messed up the island quite badly. In Deijima Island, I protected the island from the monster attack but Miri was taken away. In the Principality of Nicplan, in the end, I could not delay the troops to allow them to escape. Even if I could take the optimal route, I could not find the best route. Even though it wouldn’t be a game over and I can get a normal end, I could not reach the true end.”
I kept thinking about it.
Could I have done it better?
If it was Miri who got this power instead of me, she probably could have thought of methods I wouldn’t think of and everyone would be happy.
My thoughts were along those lines.
“Master? Does the ‘true’ in true ending mean real desu?”
“That’s a given even if not said explicitly. It’s a figure of speech –”
“I don’t understand desu. I do not understand what is the best ending Master seeks but Sheena No.3 and the Dark-Elves are satisfied with this ending and this ending is the real ending to everyone desu. And it is a happy ending desu. That’s why I do not want Master to think that this reality is not true desu. I don’t want Master to think of it as not real, even if it is a figure of speech desu.”
Sheena No.3 said and circled me to wrap her arms around me.
“Please do not deny the reality (happiness) that Master gave us.”
Sheena No.3 said in a soft voice that could be heard because of our close contact.
“You … what happened to your sentence ending phrase …”
Sheena No.3’s attitude was unprecedented so I could only think of that reply.
Then, I asked Sheena No.3.
“Sheena No.3, what do you think I should do?”
“First, Master should think of what you want to do. Do not think about whether it is actually possible or not or if it will trouble anybody or not desu.”
“What I want to do –”
I had three things I wanted to do for this incident.
I want to resolve the Frenzy curse issue.
I want to help the devil race taken to the church.
I want to return Flute to her family and companions.
Lining them up together, none of them seem to be achievable.
“That’s a sober expression desu.”
“Kind of. I am defeated by my powerlessness.”
“The powerlessness of Jobless desu.”
“Shut up! So what should I do next?”
“Let’s have everyone think about it together desu. Everyone definitely can help in some way desu.”
After Sheena No.3 said that, I suddenly heard voices from behind.
“Yes. I am Master’s sword and shield. If Master wishes for it, I will do my best.”
“Carol will do her best for anything Ichino-sama wishes for too. Please go ahead and ask.”
Haru and Carol appeared behind me without me noticing.
I totally didn’t realize.
“Could I borrow your strength?”
“It is not borrow. My strength has always belonged to Master.”
“Furthermore, whatever Ichino-sama wants is likely what Carol and others want too.”
Haru and Carol said.
Carol – no, both of them probably roughly knew what I wanted to do. Nevertheless, they said that they would think of the best strategy with me.
I seemed like an idiot for worrying and deciding that it would be impossible.
(The responsibility to be liked …)
Responsibility is a proof of trust.
Haru and Carol – no, everyone here trusts me. That’s why they will not hesitate to help me.
I came to like the word responsibility a little more.