When that time comes, the 1,000 that have been chosen by God will be sent to the parallel world.
The time is at midnight GMT on January 1st.
Due to the time difference, the departure will be at 9 a.m. in Japan.
That day was unfortunately rainy, and the morning news said it was rare for it to be raining on new year’s day.
I left home with an umbrella in hand in order to give my final farewells to Nanami.
As I exited my house, there was a TV crew slightly further away that must have just arrived. I saw them directing their cameras at me, and I simply bowed at them lightly.
My house is not only small, but is also facing a busy road, so with several TV station crews blocking the way, traffic jams happen.
On the day Nanami was chosen, there was quite the trouble regarding that, so they have decided to take their positions at a sidewalk slightly further away. Well, today will be the last day they chase after Nanami.
God didn’t unveil more information than necessary about the parallel world.
What we know is that it is a similar world to Earth, and that it is a fantasy world of swords and magic. The Chosen will be given Bonus Points to strengthen themselves, exchange for items, and start in a state you desire to a certain extent… That’s at most what we got.
There wasn’t much advice I could give Nanami.
Even if she can strengthen her body slightly, I can’t imagine Nanami fighting monsters. Then, does she have any other choice than living her life safely in a city?
In that case, instead of putting points into strengthening herself aimlessly, it would be better to change it for items and money. But if she were to have money and good items while still being weak, she might end up getting robbed and killed… Then, there really is a need for strength…? I went around in circles and couldn’t get a clear answer.
My little sisters said that putting the necessary points in strengthening yourself is big because there’s a high chance that you won’t be able to get them later, so they said that you must take those kinds of things, but we are not robust game characters to begin with.
That’s why, in the end, there’s no choice but to decide what ability to get after having a look at them. With that in consideration, you can then distribute your points in a balanced manner. That was the safest way.
That was the conclusion we reached.
“…Did I get here a bit too late? Even so, it is pretty silent in the house of Nanami…” (Hikaru)
It is still 8 in the morning though.
Are they still sleeping despite it being the day of departure?
The Chosen were originally supposed to gather in the Tokyo Dome where the people would oversee their departure, but Nanami declined it. She refused in a tv program saying she wanted to pass her last moments with her family.
Well, there’s the chance that the mass media that can’t read the mood will be showing up at the last minute, but there’s currently no one. They might unexpectedly respect the last moments of the Chosen.
Or maybe they are not pushing it because they are scared of the divine punishment of God.
“Good morning, it is me, Hikaru!” (Hikaru)
The entrance was open, so I just entered, but this is strange.
Even though the lights are on, there’s no sound.
I am acquainted with the family of Nanami due to our families being friends. It is hard to believe that they would still be asleep the day her daughter is going to be departing.
I take off my shoes and go in while having a bad feeling.
The door leading to the dining room was closed and the light was on, but there was only silence ruling the place.
“Good morning! …This is strange.” (Hikaru)
Has she already been transferred?
I head to the room of Nanami while still carrying this bad feeling.
Her room is on the second floor.
It was as if the only sound in this house covered in silence were the sounds of the rainfall, my heartbeats, and my clattering teeth.
“Nanami…? Are you there?” (Hikaru)
Even when I knocked on the door, there was no response.
I steel myself and open the door to the room of Nanami.
And there she was.
Eyes closed, and her body laying down as if leaning on the bed.
Her abdomen…no, her whole upper body was dark red from what was the remains of blood, creating a sea of blood that dyed the carpet red.
I ran to her on the verge of falling.
“Nanami! Oi! Wake up! Nanami…!” (Hikaru)
I shook her by the shoulders, but her head was swinging powerlessly.
Without any strength as if she were a doll.
I felt blood was draining from my face.
…She is dead?
……Nanami was killed…?
My brain couldn’t process this.
She said that going to a parallel world was scary.
My childhood friend that was sobbing as she pleaded for someone to switch with her?
Even though she was energetic yesterday.
She hasn’t had any big injuries ever either.
That Nanami had died the very day she was going to be transferred.
I don’t know for how long I was spaced out here.
It might have been an instant, and it may have been an hour.
My brain couldn’t even process to check whether the aunt and uncle of Nanami are okay. My whole body was trembling, and I couldn’t even breathe properly.
It was as if my brain, heart, my whole body was trying its hardest to deny this reality.
“A-Anyways…I have to call an ambula—” (Hikaru)
Just when I had regained a bit of calm and took out my smartphone, a voice rang from my back and the feeling of something hot being driven into my body happened almost at the same time.
“…Gah?! W-What’s…this?” (Hikaru)
My vision is dyed bright red.
Heat began to spread from my back as if my blood was flowing in reverse. My consciousness flickered as if matching the rhythm of my heart.
My back was burning hot.
It was as if a scorching iron pipe had been driven into me.
“Good grief. Don’t scare me. You are…Kurose, was it? Were you dating? Sorry for killing her.”
When I look back, there was a man around the same age as me.
A guy from the same school that I have seen before.
We have never been in the same class. A guy I don’t remember the name of.
I think he was the kind of guy that would go ‘yay yay’ outside the groups of popular people.
Even though he is from a different class, he would sometimes come to our class, so I somewhat remember his face.
The guy that was lamenting exaggeratedly in a loud voice about not being chosen.
Why did he kill Nanami…?
Why does he know my name…?
“Well, I will be disappearing to a parallel world. Just consider yourself unlucky and give up, Kurose. You are going to be dying together with your beloved Nanami-chan, so it is okay, right?”
The man was laughing hysterically with a pale face, but only his eyes were shining dangerously, and he by no means looked normal.
I wrung out what little strength I had left and spoke.
Why did he kill Nanami?
“Huuh? Don’t you know? If you kill the Chosen, the right is passed to the person that killed them. I wanted to go to the parallel world no matter what. Well, I feel sorry for Nanami-chan, but she did say that she was scared of going to a parallel world, right? She was going to die instantly there anyways. Then, everyone would be happy if I was the one achieving big things over there.”
If you kill the Chosen, the rights are passed.
That was the rumor that was circulating in the internet at the beginning, but that was merely an urban legend.
There were several Chosen who were killed, but not a single story about the killer getting the rights passed to them.
It simply goes to a random lottery again.
This idiot believed that urban legend and killed Nanami.
“Who~ is the idiot? What are you getting all cocky here, you loner.”
I was kicked, and fell on top of Nanami.
I am not in a state where I can fight back. My consciousness was already fading.
The burning feeling in my back was already gone, and I now only feel cold.
I could tell instinctively that death was approaching.
“Now then, just about 1 hour more, huh. It would be a pain if someone else comes, so maybe I should lock the entrance?”
The man left the room as if saying he had no interest in me and Nanami anymore.
“Guugh…at the very least…a call…” (Hikaru)
I tried to at least call the police.
But I had dropped my smartphone, and I don’t even have any remaining strength to pick it up.
My vision was hazy from my tears and my fading consciousness.
But my eyes caught the thing that Nanami was hugging closely to her chest.
“Nanami…you idiot…” (Hikaru)
It was a pastel colored pocket album.
She must have chosen that so that it wouldn’t be difficult to bring around. This album that was the size of a notebook was clearly something she had prepared in order to bring to the parallel world.
Nanami said that rather than some body armor, she wanted to make an album with her memories of this world.
Saying she would get homesick.
Rather than that other world where she doesn’t know anyone, what was important for her were the people she treasured in this world.
I stretch my trembling fingers and touch that.
…In the end, Nanami went to heaven with an album filled with memories as the girl that feared getting homesick, huh.
But I will soon be following behind.
I didn’t manage to go together with her to the parallel world, but we have been together since the time we were born.
If possible, God…
Please let me continue being her childhood friend in the next world…