Hey, this chapter is another recap chapter. It focuses on Naoi. There should only be two more recap chapters and then I will be back to my story. The two other ones will focus on Otonashi's memories and a short recap of the final events of the original series.
Family is Complicated
"Argh!" Hinata yelled, as he was leaving through the doorway to some small, dark room. "Free at last!"
"Who'd have thought that the Vice President would be such a hard ass," Fujimaki said.
"Well, there is nothing we can do about it," Yuri told him. "He is just a normal student, and you know that we don't fight them."
"I know, I know."
Otonashi stood toward the back, contemplating in his mind on many things. Now that everything was over, no Angel to fight or anything, he wondered what would happen. Would the group stay together? He didn't want this to end.
He kept to himself during this walk from the containment cell, which was literally a prison cell used for something similar to detention. He ignored Yui and Hinata's usual retarded arguments. Something about Yui suggesting she tried to seduce the Vice President, Hinata's negative retort, and Yui yelling back about how she would be perfect for it because she had awesome, soft boobs. Repeat: retarded.
Back in the Battlefront headquarters, the group was wondering where they would be lead to next. What they would do. Even Yuri could not find an answer and just told everyone to just do whatever they want. Just, not to do anything that could factor into their being erased.
Before he left, Yuri called for him. Walking over to her, she reached out and said, "Take this." It was a walkie talkie Hands down the most important piece of equipment a member of the Battlefront could have, and very few had even touched one. It sounds silly, but in this world, technology like the walkie talkie is hard to replicate. The school itself has always provided computers, but everything else, the Battlefront has had to acquire through their own creation.
"Isn't this really important?" he asked her.
"Just take it."
So he did, and went on his way.
Otonashi grabbed a coffee from the vending machine, chugged it, and threw it at the trash can yelling, "What's the point of keeping this up?!" None of the students around him even gave him a second thought.
He was frustrated that he had nothing to do. Not in the sense of boredom, but in the sense of distraction. He had been trying to ignore it, but with nothing to distract him from it, he couldn't. His missing memories. They had not come back yet. Not even the slightest. He was worried that if he got his memories back, then he wouldn't be able to be friends with everyone the way he was now. As there was always the possibility of something in his past that would ruin everything.
He finally decided he would just go to class and take a nap. But, as he walked in, he noticed that the room was empty save for one person. Angel. Kanade Tachibana. But, she didn't have that previous feeling of danger that she used to hold. She seemed just like any normal human. Walking over to her and sitting down he said something based on what he learned from the operation to strip Angel of her seat as Student Council President. She loved mabo dofu. An insanely hot food that burns to the touch, but was also very good.
"Hey" he said, a bit hesitantly, "I just tried this really good food called mabo dofu. It was really hot, but so good, so I was wondering if I could... buy... you..." he stopped in his tracks as Kanade quickly stood up and started walking away.
She probably hates me, he thought. But then she turned around and asked, "What's keeping you?"
Surprised, he looked up at her. "Right," he said, standing up. He followed her out of the classroom and off to the cafeteria.
Sitting at the cafeteria, Otonashi sat there, shocked, staring at Kanada, as he ate the mabo dofu like it was nothing. When he had tried it, he thought his head would pop, but here she is eating it like some normal food. Taking a bite, the flames engrossed his mouth in seconds, burning his entire body. But at the same time, he could not deny that the mabo dofu was insanely delicious.
"What are you doing, Kanade?" spoke a demanding voice from behind Otonashi. Turning around, he saw the Vice President, Naoi Ayato standing behind him.
"What do you thing?!" he yelled back. "Were eating!"
"It is against school rules to eat during break," he said back calmly.
This surprised Otonashi. He had never heard of this rule. He looked over at Kanade going, "Huh?" and back to the Vice President going "Huh?" again. He felt that he probably had a very stupid look on his face. He did.
The sound of a crash as the door closed and Otonashi rammed against it to try and get out reverberated throughout the small cell. The door that blocked their exit was unlike any other they had witnessed. A foot thick of steel with numerous locks and security mechanisms to make sure that whoever is inside, won't be getting out. "Dammit!" Otonashi yelled.
Turning to Kanade, he asked in desperation, "Can't you do something?"
"No, sorry," she replied flatly. "We broke the rules, so this is where we have to be." She took off her shoes and set them on the ground. Pulling herself onto the makeshift cot, she fell asleep within seconds.
Then, he remembered that he got the radio from Yuri. Pulling it out of his pocket, and jammed down the broadcast button, he yelled, "Yuri! Are you there?! Listen we need help! I'm with Angel, and were trapped!" But there was no reply. Only static. "Damn thing!" he yelled, and threw it at the wall. "Piece of shit doesn't work."
Sighing, Otonashi knew that there was nothing that he could do. So, he sat down and went to sleep himself.
A little while later, he awoke to the sound of Yuri's voice. Jumping up, he looked around, wondering where it was coming from. He looked down and spotted the walkie talkie on the bed, and the transmission light stating that someone was making contact was flashing.
Practically diving for it, he picked it up and heard Yuri's voice come through it. "Otonashi, are you there?"
"Yes!" he yelled back. "I am!"
"Hello?" she replied. "Well, I'll assume that you can hear this."
Fuck! He yelled this in his mind. She can't hear me!
"It turns out, Naoi wasn't a normal student." Otonashi's eyes widened at this news. "Normally, a normal student living as the vice president of the student council would be erased, but he has been balancing himself out by committing brutal acts against the other normal students." Her voice was cracking, thus, something big was obviously happening or about to happen, and it was pissing Otonashi off that he couldn't do anything. "We're going to battle," she said after a long pause. "One like we have never had before. We need you to find Angel right now. We need her help, as much as I hate to admit it." After a moment, she resumed, "I bet you are with here right now, aren't you? Well..." Before she could finish, she was cut off by the sound of gunfire. "We're fighting. Yuri out!"
"God dammit!" he screamed, punching the wall. He crawled over to Kanade and woke her up with quick, desperate shakes. "Please!" he yelled as she opened here eyes. "My friends are in trouble, they need our help!"
Rubbing her eyes, she replied in her usual monotone self, "That's strange. Aren't we the ones that need help?"
"Please!" he screamed.
Getting up slowly, she headed for the door. "Hand Sonic." Slashing the door with her main weapon did nothing but produce sparks. Otonashi looked down, frustration plainly on his face, but he looked up when he heard her continue. "Version two." A longer, thinner blade then produced itself where the original once lay. "Whoa," he said, astonished.
She slashed the door again, but to no avail. Looking at it, she said, "This version was meant to be faster and more agile, but it's still not strong enough to break through the door."
"How come?" he asked her.
"Because, these weapons were made for self defense, not offense.
Otonashi stared, but then quickly realized. The Battlefront made weapons to fight her, and she needed something to protect herself with. Had the Battlefront never made the weapons, she would never have made her guard skills.
"Are there any others?"
"Yes." Looking at her blade again, she spoke, "Version three." Then she did the same thing again, but "Verison Four" instead. However, version four was a little strange. It was like a giant, flower shaped mace of some sort. "This one was meant to be cute." She looked at Otonashi. "Is it?"
"Er... Yeah." He didn't think so, but he agreed anyway.
"You know," he spoke, "if I had not lost my memories, I may have ended up joining you instead."
"Me?" she asked. "That is impossible."
He didn't know why it would be impossible, but he still pressed the subject. "Well, wouldn't it be cool?"
"No," she replied, flatly.
And that is when it hit him. For someone to be friends with Kanade, that would mean they would have to live a happy, normal school-life. Which would mean that they would end up obliterated. Slowly, ever so slowly, Kanade would lose everyone that she cared for. A slow and agonizing hell with which Otonashi does not even want to imagine.
In light of this realization, Otonashi came up with a plan. "Hey, Kanade," he said. "I have an idea."
Switching back to Version Two, Kanade thrust the blade in between the small crack between the door and the wall. Switching to Version Three and then Version Four, the expansion caused the door to break in a small explosion. Rushing out, Otonashi grabbed her hand and pulled her to his destination.
When he arrived, all that was left were the remnants of a massacre. Dead bodies of Battlefront members lay everywhere. Blood washed away by the rain trailed and spread itself further and further along the ground. Look down, Otonashi spotted Naoi standing over the body of Hinata, who was mortally wounded. Rushing down, he sprinted for Hinata, almost tripping as he jumped the steps that were slick from rain. Naoi backed away, smiling, as he reached Hinata, falling to his knees and trying to shake him awake.
Hinata's eyes open and he smiled, saying, "You come to me first? Are you 'that way?'"
He shook Hinata again and yelled, "This is no time to be joking around!"
"Well, look at this," said the all to familiar voice of the student council vice president. "And after I spent all those years trying to build a facility to contain her, she breaks out anyway."
"Naoi!" Otonashi growled.
"You would try to defy me?" he asked. Something about the way he spoke was very arrogant. "Defy God?"
"What?" asked, confused.
"This world decides who can become God. We have the right, as we suffered in our lives. That gave us the right to become God! And I have become one!"
"You're insane!" Hinata yelled. "You're no God!"
Naoi crouched down beside the body of Yuri, and lifted her up. She was still alive. Not only that, but she was also still conscious. "One of the first things I did when I came to this world was practice an art that would give me the power I need. Hypnotism."
Looking at those holding guns at Otonashi and Kanade, they're eyes and faces held dead expressions. They were not in the normal frame of mind.
"Now," he spoke, looking at Yuri. She was trembling, scared of what he was going to do to here. The strong and powerful leader, reduced to a trembling mess. "I will make you happy." He was going to erase Yuri through forced acceptance of her life.
Otonashi tackled Naoi in a split second, throwing them both onto the cold, wet ground. "Don't force her to accept that!" he screamed in Naoi's face. "Her life was real! Her's to accept or defy! It was the same with all of us!" The members of the Battlefront who were still conscious raised their heads with what little of their strength remained to watch this spectacle. "Wasn't your life just like ours?! Wasn't it real?!"
I was the one who died.
It was my brother who survived.
The fall from a tree branch breaking had killed by brother as he landed on a large stone.
But it was myself who died.
My brother was a renowned potter at even such a young age. My father praised him and focused only on my brother. I, on the other hand, was an unfortunate existence. My family ignored me, save for my brother who I played with often, and I usually spent all my time by myself playing video games.
But on the day of my brother's death, I died. Or at least, that is what my family told the world.
I was to replace my twin brother. I was to become the potter to take over the family business.
But I was no good. I failed every pot I made, and my father did nothing but scold me harshly for it. But I had a reason for living now. A reason to live on. And I loved it. I won a minor award once at an exhibition. But it was nothing to be proud of. My brother would have done so much better. My father told me, "Never do this again. Next time, do not disgrace me again!" It was harsh, but I knew that my father believed I could do it. That I had the ability.
But very soon, my father fell ill. Bedridden, his attitude to me changed. No longer did he scold me, but he looked at me with caring eyes. Every day as I brought him food, he would smile and thank me. Tell me what a great son I was. This may seem like a good thing, but in truth, I had lost my purpose.
With my father incapacitated, unable to teach me any longer, I would not be able to learn anything more in the field of pottery. And at my skill lever, I would never be able to run the studio. The purpose I had gained, even at the cost of my brother's life, was stripped away from me.
The cost so great, yet I still lost it. "God!" I screamed into the night.
"But wasn't your life still real?!" Otonashi screamed.
Naoi's eyes widened, and he looked up to Otonashi.
Otonashi lunged forward and embraced Naoi. Squeezing him tightly he yelled, "Your life was still real wasn't it?! Just like Yuri's or Hinata's! Just like mine that I cannot remember!" Otonashi was on the verge of tears. It was hard to think about the past he couldn't remember. "Your life was real! You are the one that I am embracing now! Only you. You have my full, undivided attention. And I recognize you."
Naoi was staring off into space. Emotion coming at him in waves. "You would recognize me? Even after everything?"
"Yes." Simple as that, yet it made a small change in Naoi's heart.
"Soon after, Naoi joined the Battlefront," Otonashi told them.
Ellie and Okazaki looked on at Otonashi. His story was getting deeper and deeper.
But they let him continue. And what was to come interested both Okazaki and Ellie to no end. If the story were food, it would be a delicious sirloin steak.
"I guess the next part hits me a little close to home. As it's my memories that I will be speaking of next."