Finally, my website is back to normal!! I still can’t believe how much stress this whole thing caused me, when it clearly wasn’t my fault, for the website was/is properly configured. My incredibly reliable host made me do all sort of stuff for the past few weeks, blaming me for a massive usage of resources, when the problem and its solving lied withing their responsibilities. It was extremely frustrating to try to solve something when I didn’t actually know what was causing the problem and, moreover, my incredibly reliable host kept on trying to make me upgrade my plan (marketing strategy obviously) on every single occasion. I don’t blame the tech team for they’re more or less forced to do this by a company policy which only wants more money. The problem was finally solved yesterday and it was caused by the server (obviously) – something like a misconfiguration of a caching function, which had NOTHING to do with me or the website. Anyway, one good thing actually came out of this whole situation: I was forced to learn a lot about mySQL databases and their optimization, which for an aspiring web developer like me is a very beneficial skill set.
Anyway, I’m very happy to be back and I’m still fascinated about how fast the website loads now (3-4 sec compared to 30-60 sec from a few days ago)…. 😀
Thanks for your support and don’t worry, I won’t vanish without saying anything first! ^^
With all these being said, enjoy the first update in a long time!
Also, don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE for free imaginary candy and the newest chapter updates! (^. -)
Chapter 18: The Pressure of Falling-Down
My training started with something that was meant to test my resistance to air pressure, which was a free fall.
I could never possibly have imagined that I would be forced to drop down from 1000 meters in the sky, so right now I am screaming with all my might.
This height doesn’t even compare to that of a sky scraper. The ground is too far away.
The one who tricked me into this was obviously that person. Tameiki-san.
Tameiki-san is falling-down next to me, a composed expression on her face.
I coooompletely let my guard down.
These past two days, I could barely sleep.
And on the way here, because of the piled up fatigue, the sleep assaulted me.
Even though the destination was right above the corner.
Before I became aware of it, I started to fall in a doze and I was immediately in the land of dreams.
Then, I felt a strange feeling of falling down and opened my eyes, only to find myself bathing in the sky…….I was sky diving.
Naturally, I was quite shocked. So much so that I almost wet myself.
Rather, it was impossible not to be shocked by this.
When I opened my eyes, I was sky diving; I’m afraid I am the only one who ever experienced something like this.
I got treated this way even after being left with a trauma for “falling” due to my last mission.
I’ve long since realized it, but Tameiki-san is an outrageous person.
But now isn’t the time for this. The ground is already getting close.
……..Well, as one would expect, Tameiki-san will most likely do something about the landing.
I have no means to properly land and if she doesn’t help me I’ll definitely die.
I embraced this hope and looked at Tameiki-san. That’s when she opened her mouth.
The words that came out next frightened me even more.
She said, in a very quiet voice that no one could’ve picked up but me.
That I was responsible for my own landing.
“You gotta be kidding, Tameiki-san!?”
“Don’t be passive. Take action.”
What action can I possibly take in mid-air!? It has no shit to do with being passive.
Damn it……! What should I do?
There’s nothing I can do!
I have no way of softening the landing impact.
If I slam into the ground from this height, I’ll certainly die.
I can’t believe the fact that Tameiki-san would demand something that was impossible to achieve, no matter how unbelievable she was.
There must be something to help me break out of this deadlock.
It’s useless. The ground is getting closer and closer.
I can’t think of anything.
“I can’t do it! Please save me!!”
I shouted, amplifying the sound of my voice.
In such circumstances, if I didn’t do that Tameiki-san wouldn’t have heard me.
I could still understand her even if she talked in a quiet voice, but Tameiki-san couldn’t possibly do the same.
“Sigh……Don’t behave like a spoiled child.”
What’s wrong with this person!
Well, if this is how it is…….
Then, there’s nothing else to do but this!
I stretched my arms and got a hold of Tameiki-san’s wrist, then I pulled her towards me. After that, I embraced Tameiki-san with all my strength.
Unlike me, Tameiki-san surely has the means for a safe landing.
If I hug her like this, she will be forced to land together with me.
In short, I won’t have to land by myself.
If she forcibly separates herself from me I’ll be done for, but in order to not let this happen, I held her very tightly.
I know that I shouldn’t really be thinking about this right now, but Tameiki-san smelled extremely good.
Besides, her body felt quite thin. Nevertheless, a pair of well-rounded mounds were firmly putting an emphasis on their existence.
Since I was hugging Tameiki-san from up front, I naturally ended up burying my face in that pair of mounds.
I was in a position that if Tameiki-san were to move up her knee, I would be instantly knocked down.
“I’m so sorry! I’m not doing it on purpose! It’s the air pressure! The force is irresistible!”
I raised my voice, my face still buried in Tameiki-san’s chest.
“Stop it. Don’t talk. It tickles.”
I desperately prayed that she wouldn’t shake me off.
I closed my eyes.
We’ll very soon be landing.
The dark feeling of falling down.
However, it suddenly ended.
A strange floating sensation enveloped me.
Once I opened my eyes, I realized that the ground wasn’t approaching as quickly as before.
We were now surrounded by huge trees, while the smell and the air seemed different.
Tameiki-san said and the strange floating sensation vanished, as we landed.
I believe that this was Tameiki-san’s ability.
If I remember correctly, Tameiki-san is an ability user who can control gravity. If she controls gravity, then what she just did had something to do with it.
Anyway, it seems that my avoidance method was the passing mark. Whether there was some other way in those circumstances, apart from clinging to Tameiki-san or not, I decided to set it aside.
“How much longer will you stick to me? Get off.”
I was told and I hurriedly let go of Tameiki-san.
Tameiki-san didn’t seem to have an interest in my apology and, for some reason, she looked up to the sky and started to wander aimlessly.
I looked up as well, wondering what she was looking at, and I saw a small spot in the sky from an opening through the tree leaves.
It was getting bigger and bigger.
A wind-cutting sound.
Something was falling towards us.
That falling object was dropping at an incredible speed and, before long, it started to be sucked up towards Tameiki-san’s hand.
Even though it fell at such an incredible speed, it didn’t even have any impact.
The falling object came out to be a large backpack. Tameiki-san’s luggage that she kept in the helicopter.
Come to think of it, I didn’t bring any luggage with me. Since I was basically kidnapped, it couldn’t have been helped.
She even confiscated my work phone, saying something about severing communication with the outside world.
Thanks to this, I can’t even send one message to Roll. It was quite a troubling situation.
I really wanted her to at least let me send one message to apologize to Roll.
“First of all, we’ll walk towards the camp house close to the lake.”
She said and held the backpack she just caught out for me to hold it.
It was too troublesome for her to carry it.
Anyway, is there really a camp house here?
I thought that she would force me to camp outside, but I’m glad it won’t happen.
I took the backpack.
The backpack seemed light when Tameiki-san held it, but it actually had an unusual weight; I somehow managed to put it on my back though. Then, I followed Tameiki-san who started to walk right away.
We advanced in this sea of trees, both of us dressed in our tuxedos.
It was amazing how out-of-place we seemed.
Other than that, there were these astonishing ‘sounds’.
From all over the place, from every possible direction, the howls, roars and shrieks of magical beasts could be heard.
Only by listening to these sounds, you could picture the vast numbers of magical beasts inhabiting this sea of trees.
……..What if we encounter a dangerous magical beast all of a sudden!?
I decided to stay alert to the surrounding sounds.
After we walked for a while, we arrived at the camp house Tameiki-san talked about.
It was more or less covered in ivy and moss, but the camp house looked prettier than I expected.
The area surrounding the camp house was mostly deforested, so the place looked rather opened.
Even though the weeds are overgrown, this space here is good for movement.
I watched as Tameiki-san opened the door to the camp house and entered it, then I followed her.
However, the moment I entered the house, she kicked me out.
I fell on my buttocks just outside the door.
The spot where my hand landed on the ground was filled with crawling insects.
Honestly, this didn’t really surprise me.
I thought about the reason why Tameiki-san just kicked me out.
Was it because I entered with my shoes on?
No, Tameiki-san did the same.
I thought about various things for a while, but in the end I didn’t understand why she kicked me out, so I looked up at Tameiki-san, who was now looking down at me, in order to find my answer.
Our eyes met and immediately after she began to speak.
“You’re camping. For the whole month.”
So, this is how it’ll be?
Well, I was actually fine with it, since I came here prepared for camping outside.
But I wanted her to wait.
Did Tameiki-san plan to sleep on the bed I just saw through the brief opening of the door?
I asked, discontent showing on my entire face.
“It’s your training.”
“Please wait. As one would expect, being here alone through the night is scary and disheartening.”
At least the first two nights, camp outside together with me.”
It was an earnest request.
“You want to make a woman sleep outside?”
“A woman? I don’t think that you’re the type of person who would bring that up as an excuse.”
I only realized it after I said it.
I said something I shouldn’t have.
Tameiki-san was silent.
Did I just……hurt her feelings?
No, it’s unimaginable that something like this could possibly hurt her.
Anyway, I need a followup.
“What I wanted to say is not that I don’t consider you a woman. What I was referring to was your character, you know?
I do think that you are a very beautiful woman, so please don’t misunderstand me!”
“……Just what are you talking about?
Heid did press upon me a weird guy.”
Tameiki-san said, then she closed the door of the camp house with a thud.
…….Just now, did Tameiki-san feel awkward? I have the impression she talked a little faster than usual.
After a short while, the door of the camp house opened again, and a sleeping bag came out tumbling from that crack.
Perhaps, Tameiki-san is a much more interesting person than I previously thought.
Thus, my training began.
Tameiki-san is probably a more interesting person than I thought.
It was a moment when I really meant this.
Now, I take it back.
Tameiki-san is, as I thought, a very dangerous person.
“Just please, please don’t do this. I’ll do anything, even sleep outside by myself.”
I desperately begged Tameiki-san.
Right now, she is stuffing my both ears with two small rubber-like earplugs.
At first sight, they appeared like normal earplugs.
However, these earplugs were made of a material that would firmly stick to the ear’s mucous membrane, and they can only come off by using a special lotion.
Because of these unbelievable gum-like earplugs, my sense of hearing went down about 90%.
Tameiki-san said that I had to wear these weird earplugs for the entire month.
To put things bluntly, I’ll die.
At this point, my sense of hearing was barely functional for making conversation.
This way it’ll be difficult for me to sense any sort of threat.
Moreover, I was inside the Basara Woodlands, which is basically a nest of magical beasts.
“But it’ll be troublesome if earwax accumulates……..”
“Once your training’s over, I’ll clean them up for you.”
I was about to ask this but I stopped.
What’s with this person? She’s using temptation?
But I won’t be lured by this.
First of all, if Tameiki-san ends up cleaning my ears, she’ll most likely thrust in so deep that she’ll reach the ossicles and it’ll be all over.
I definitely can’t entrust my ears to her.
Then, let’s have a serious talk now.”
Because Tameiki-san’s air suddenly changed, I instinctively corrected my posture.
“……What is it?”
Tameiki-san’s eyelids, which usually were only half opened, lifted up a bit and she started to speak.
“I intend to train you as seriously as I can.
Normally, this would’ve never happened.
It is very rare for me to feel motivated and I’m quite shocked myself because of it.
And I don’t even feel like sighing.”
“First, we have to do something about your annoying attack.
An ability user who can only attack in all directions indiscriminately. That’s meaningless. It’s not worth going on missions with you.
You’ll end up doing extermination missions your whole life all by yourself.”
That’s my trashy reputation.
But I can’t say anything to defend myself, since precisely because of this Roll ended up in such a sorry state.
More than that, it was actually the truth.
“If your power is sound, then, first, you’ll have to be able to control the strength and directionality of your sound.
You need the power to only attack the enemy you aim at.
……But, there’s something you need to do before that.
You must learn to sense the sound with every piece of your body.
If you’re a sound ability user, you must become able to feel the sound with all your other four senses, apart from hearing.”
So these earplugs are precisely for this.
Reduce my hearing sense in order to sharpen all my other senses.
“Like watching the sound with my eyes, feeling the sound with my skin, smelling the sound with my nose and tasting the sound with my tongue?”
I as well, when I manifested my ‘gravity control’ ability, which is quite a difficult one to handle, I walked the same path as you.
During my manifestation, I killed about double the amount of people than you did.”
How should I put it? I kind of…….feel an affinity to her now.
“That’s why I can give you accurate advice.
Well, in short, this is it.
Listen to what I say.”
At the end, Tameiki-san muttered.
“It’s been a while since I talked this much.”
It appears that Tameiki-san truly intends to make me stronger.
This determination of hers reached me.
I felt a little happy.
After she told me this much I have no choice but to properly listen to her.
I’ll do everything you say.”
I can’t possibly lose in a battle of motivation against Tameiki-san, since it was me who decided that I needed to get stronger.
“Don’t call me that.”
“Please let me call you master.”
“No. Listen to what I say.”
“Then, what about senpai?”