Two Childhood Friends Chapter 2

Chapter 2 – …It Shined?

I was heading to the gym as graduation approached.

Why was I going there?

The special abilities exam.

It was an exam to check for special abilities, just as it sounded.

All third year middle school students had to take it when graduation drew near.

…Yeah, damn it.

The word “obligation” was one I hated most.

Just give me rights.

I don’t have any obligations.

Already I didn’t want to take the exam.

I mean, it’s ridiculous to seriously investigate special abilities which until recently were thought of as make-believe by guys failing at establishing natural airhead characters.

Well, it was also true such abilities objectively existed now and were utilized, ever since those nonsensical dungeon things appeared.

“Hey Kuchinasi, what time does the special abilities exam start today?”

While heading to the gym, a guy called out to me… He looked vaguely familiar.

A classmate maybe?

I had absolutely no interest so I couldn’t recall his name at all.

And wasn’t he being overly familiar?

“10 o’clock.”

“Thanks!”

The guy laughed and casually placed a hand on my shoulder.

Who the hell was he?

He was talking to me casually but I didn’t know him at all.

“If we had special abilities, what would you do?”

He kept talking to me… I don’t get any benefit from talking to you so I don’t want to, you know…

[Isn’t it wrong to only interact with people based on merits and demerits?]

…Then there was another guy’s voice in my head again. An old man.

With the worn out voice of an old man battered by the turbulent waves of society.

[That’s not it!? I was about the same age as you!? And haven’t I explained who I am before!?]

Why should I warmly welcome a guy who just parasitically invades people’s minds as he pleases?

[…Well, that aside.]

What a pain.

He was a ghost who suddenly appeared in my head a few years ago.

I can see through him sometimes too.

While deciding to get him properly exorcised at a shrine someday, I recalled I was being spoken to by the faux classmate.

Ignoring him would be bad for my reputation.

So begrudgingly, I answered.

“I can’t really imagine it. The chances a man would have special abilities is less than 1 percent.”

The special abilities exam was conducted for all middle school students nearing graduation, regardless of gender.

But the ones found to have special abilities were almost exclusively girls.

Maybe because globally, females made up over half the population.

Various countries seemed to be researching why, but there were no definitive results.

Anyway, it was extremely rare for men to manifest abilities.

[Makes you wonder why right? I wonder what causes it.]

Don’t know, don’t care.

It’s convenient for me so I won’t look into it.

“But you know, it’d still be a dream come true! I mean if we had special abilities we could enter that academy full of girls!”

I spat in contempt internally at the classmate voicing such an opinion.

Is lust all this monkey has in his head?

Of the three great desires, lust was the only one I had complete control over and didn’t need.

And in this fulfilled modern world, lust was what made people go mad most easily.

In other words, it was a foolish and arrogant thing.

[Don’t you think that’s going overboard? Isn’t it normal for guys your age to be interested in the opposite sex?]

Don’t give a damn.

Women who are useless to me don’t interest me one bit.

But I had to take care not to make a mistake in my reply here.

It wasn’t just the two of us heading to the gym.

There were other students from our grade around…including girls.

YOU ARE READING STOLEN TRANSLATION. READ THE ORIGINAL TRANSLATION AT GADGETIZEDPANDA.COM

“I don’t have any desire to go to a place like that. Sorry, but I’m different from you.”

“Tch, boring.”

My classmate frowned at my reply.

But I paid him no mind, focusing on those around us instead.

“As expected, Kuchinasi is different.”

“It’s rude to compare him to other boys.”

I make sure to properly listen in on their whispered conversation.

My reputation shoots up.

Thank you for willingly becoming my stepping stone.

As your evaluation drops, mine rises relatively.

[What an awful mindset for a middle schooler…]

Ignoring the ghost (parasite), I entered the gym.

When the entire grade gathered, the homeroom teacher began speaking.

“Today is the special abilities exam, as announced previously. Evene line up single file and take turns touching that crystal. If the crystal shines, that means you have special abilities. Those who shine, wait in the gym. Evene else can leave after. Now then, begin in attendance number order.”

It was set up simply like when voting, with a single table on which a decently sized crystal sat.

Following the teacher’s instructions, the students took turns touching it.

Occasionally it flashed, and that student would wait in the gym.

And among the male students, not a single one was waiting there.

Good, perfect.

Going smoothly.

“Hey, you know right? They say the brighter it shines, the stronger your ability!”

The classmate lined up in front of me whispered.

Thanks for telling me something I have zero interest in.

In the first place, what criteria even determine the “strength” of special abilities?

[You’re right. I wonder how it’s measured. Maybe rarity?]

Hmm.

Well, doesn’t matter to me anyway. Pointless to think about.

“And those guys in black are from the government right?”

“Yeah. Supposedly to prevent abilities from going berserk…”

I glanced over to see men and women dressed in black suits standing at all the gym’s exits.

Tax thief bureaucrats sent by the nation.

[Do you see all public servants as thieves?]

Ignoring the ghost (parasite), I entered the gym.

When the whole grade gathered, the homeroom teacher began speaking.

“Today is the special abilities exam, as announced previously. Evene line up single file and take turns touching that crystal. If the crystal shines, that means you have special abilities. Those who shine, wait in the gym. Evene else can leave after. Now then, begin in attendance number order.”

It was set up simply like when voting, with a single table on which a decently sized crystal sat.

Following the teacher’s instructions, the students took turns touching it.

Occasionally it flashed, and that student would wait in the gym.

And among the male students, not a single one was waiting there.

Alright, perfect.

Going well.

“Man, I still wonder why the chances of manifesting abilities are lower for guys than girls.”

“Who knows.”

I patiently entertain the boring conversation to raise my evaluation.

Unfortunately, it held no interest for me either.

Simply, men’s low manifestation rate was extremely convenient.

It meant the chances I’d indirectly get drafted were low.

The idea of me risking my life fighting for others made absolutely no sense and would never happen.

[You seem like you’d never sacrifice yourself no matter what.]

Obviously… Oh.

There might be guys listening who’d raise my reputation, so let me say something to improve my image.

“But even if I don’t know why, we should still show gratitude to the people working desperately and fighting for our sake after manifesting powers.”

“What a good boy.”

My classmate smiled wryly.

But check the reactions around us properly.

“Kuchinasi really does have a great personality.”

“Yeah, he’s so different from normal guys!”

See. Easy.

With just one goody-goody line combined with my looks, I get praised so easily.

Humans really are simple.

[The things you say are devilish…]

My personality overflows with even more benevolence than an archangel.

[Pfft, nice joke.]

Huh?

“So cool… Maybe I’ll confess!?”

“Kuchinasi has the looks and personality. So no way for you.”

“Ugh…”

Oh miss, if you’ll support me I have absolutely no complaints about you.

I won’t work or do any housework but please take care of me.

[Who’d agree to that? A slave?]

“It’s my turn, be right back!”

“Yeah.”

My classmate cheerfully raised his hand and headed to the crystal.

Never come back.

“UWAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!”

“No abilities detected. Next person please.”

“…”

Bwahahaha!

No abilities even after all that energy!?

Great, interesting.

I love pitiful and pathetic things.

Maybe I’ll have him introduce himself later.

I’d love to get to know him.

[So unlike you to not just call him your friend.]

“Next, Kuchinasi Yoshihito.”

“My turn now huh.”

I stood before the crystal.

Ahh…a pain.

Hurry up and end this so I can go home.

I decided to eat delicious sweets and sip hot tea today.

While thinking about that, I reached out to the crystal. Here we go.

“Wha—!?”

The next moment, the crystal shone with a tremendous flash!

…It shined?


translator note : in case you guys are confused square bracket […] are the ghost parasite lines

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