Black Knight Kun Volume 1 Chapter 10

Chapter Ten: Changing Everyday Life
 
“Omega doesn’t have that special of a meaning, you know? Katsumi,” someone whispers in my ear.
 
Who is it…? I’m curious but strangely I don’t feel like opening my eyes.
 
“I found and chose you. That’s you,”
 
I don’t have the energy to open my eyes.
 
Just going back and forth between dozing off and reality, I continue comprehending the whispered words.
 
“It’s not like the chosen person gets stronger or anything… Just that they can refuse to accept my power by their own will…”
 
Something wraps around my head.
 
“Katsumi. It’s to protect me, right? But not being able to talk to you…makes me very lonely.”
 
I realize she’s embracing me, and once again she whispers in my ear.
 
“I’m Alpha. You’re my Omega. This short, barely allowed time is mine.”
 
My consciousness sinks into the deep sea.
 
With the sensation of my back hitting the dark, deep seafloor, my consciousness is pulled up.
 
“Haah!!”
 
Opening my eyes wide, I sit up in bed. This is inside a dark solitary confinement cell.
 
Somehow full of things I can’t see, it’s a weird place.
 
“Alpha…”
 
I murmur her name.
 
I feel like I heard her voice.
 
“I killed her…”
 
She was innocent, and I killed her.
 
“I must have killed Alpha, that girl…”
 
Forcing myself to accept the inconsistency in my memories, I hold my head in my hands.
 
“…I don’t have as many nightmares lately.”
 
Nightmares became less frequent, and I don’t vomit as much either.
 
Is this a good sign?
 
“…Sleep.”
 
With a big yawn, I lie in bed again and close my eyes.
 

About a month has passed since the battle with the planetary monster Earth.
 
Apparently the world was in turmoil during that time.
 
Because I was revealed to have participated despite being captured by the Justice Crusaders, the government was bombarded with questioning, and the online community was buzzing with all sorts of things written about me.
 
Maybe because of that, my access to sites I can browse on the computer was restricted, but in exchange I had more time to watch movies, so personally it wasn’t very inconvenient.
 
“Do you guys have friends?”
 
“We do…why?”
 
“Then why are you here this early in the morning on a day off?”
 
I blurt that out in exasperation at Red and Blue who are here in the mid-morning even though school is off.
 
“We came to see if you were dead.”
 
“I was worried you might die if left alone.”
 
“Do I look like a rabbit or something…?”
 
Do they think I’m that mentally fragile…?
 
“Oh right, what about Yellow?”
 
“She said she’d stop by the kitchen on the way and bring some sweets she made and chilled yesterday.”
 
“What is she…?”
 
I’ll acknowledge Yellow’s cooking skills, but why is she making sweets to bring here?
 
Shouldn’t she make them for her little brother and sister?
 
“Oh right! You got permission to go out! You heard?”
 
“Huh? Permission to go out?”
 
“Yeah, yeah!”
 
Red nods exaggeratedly at me looking at her in confusion.
 
Permission to go out…oh, that thing Reima mentioned yesterday?
 
“You can go out now, Katsumi!”
 
“…I see, bon voyage. Bring me back a souvenir.”
 
“No, that’s not it!”
 
I was devastated by the fact I hadn’t committed a single crime.
 
This is the Justice Crusaders’ headquarters. In other words where the suits were made, but they see me favorably so I should have been declared innocent right?
 
Plus, turns out that huge blackout with the slug monster wasn’t my fault either, and I was just doing as I pleased from when I first transformed…
 
“Even though I’m as pure and innocent as a white…”
 
But because I caused disturbances, and they still say I’m mentally unstable, looks like I have to stay here.
 
Well, Reima also knows the run down apartment I was living in.
 
Personally, living here is easier for me than that wreck of an apartment.
 
“You can go out with supervision, isn’t that exciting!? You’re not happy?”
 
“Honestly I’m more at ease here…because I can watch movies.”
 
“You can go out to eat delicious sweets!”
 
“The staff bring me stuff too.”
 
“Gu, mmhmm…!”
 
Then for some reason Red takes out a magazine from her gym bag.
 
She flips through it and shows me some kind of confectionery feature.
 
“That’s it! This place’s limited 3-color warabi mochi!”
 
“Oh, I want to eat that too,” Blue also jumps on the magazine Red showed.
 
Hm? But isn’t that…
 
“Oh, the staff also gave me those.”
 
“Aren’t you being fed too well by the staff!?”
 
“That’s from a famous shop with a 1 hour wait!”
 
No way.
 
Then I better properly thank them later.
 
“Oh right. I brought a game today to kill time.”
 
“A game?”
 
“Here, ta-dah!”
 
I wonder what she brought, Red takes a rectangular object out of her gym bag and lines them up.
 
Oh, could this be the rumored video game console? I look at it expectantly, but what she took out wasn’t a video game console, it was…
 
“Shogi!? The analog extreme!?”
 
“Yeah. I thought Katsumi might like this kind.”
 
“Well, I know the rules, buuut. I know them, buuut!! Video games or something would have been better!”
 
“It would have been a pain to bring even if we had them.”
 
…That’s true.
 
It fell short of my expectations, but it’s enough to kill time, so I decided to give it a try.
 
Sitting in the chair looking at the shogi set, a certain possibility comes to mind.
 
“You’re not plotting something, are you?”
 
“”Huh?””
 
That’s right, these guys pulled some borderline foul play in our last quiz battle.
 
After that, I had to eat ridiculously delicious sushi that didn’t seem like it belonged in this world, I was holding that much of a grudge against them.
 
“No no, nothing like that. So how do you want to do this shogi match?”
 
“You guys…”
 
“Us?”
 
“Blindfold me.”
 
“Huh!?”
 
Red looks surprised, but soon smiles brightly like normal.
 
“I’ve only played shogi once or twice too, you know? I was thinking for this match we could compete purely.”
 
“…A-are you really not tricking me?”
 
“No, really sorry about before, okay? Let’s play fairly this time?”
 
Red waves me over with an awkward smile at my slight trauma.
 
You’re really gonna play fair and square?
 
Then I can also comfortably rise to the challenge…!
 
“Since you won’t use underhanded means, my victory is assured!! Get ready Red! Today’s the last day you’ll be holding pieces!!”
 
“It’s like playing with an overexcited small dog…”
 
“Oh gosh…”
 
While boasting my might, the match begins.
 
Pa-chi, pa-chi, pa-chi, time quietly passes as I briskly move the pieces.
 
“Oh right, Katsumi, did you hear?”
 
“Hm, hear what?”
 
I tilt my head at Red’s voice while holding a shogi piece.
 
“About what happened after the fight with the planetary monster Earth.”
 
“Oh, you mean when it came out I was participating as the Black Knight?”
 
I was told to just leave the response to them, so while I’ve left it entirely to Reima and the others, I wonder what’s become of it?
 
“For now publicly there were various opinions about you fighting.”
 
“Hmm, well, of course.”
 
Since I’m considered captured by the Justice Crusaders, there would probably be criticism if I just normally fought in the suit.
 
“The government revealed they requested you sortie, and on top of that released records from when the magma monster…no, planetary monster Earth first appeared.”
 
“Wouldn’t that cause quite a commotion?”
 
“Yeah. Of course it did.”
 
“We’re super trending huh. Look.”
 
Blue, who was watching nearby, shows me her smartphone screen.
 
There were rows of text like news articles…
 

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“The Black Knight Returns!?”
 
“A 4th Member of the Justice Crusaders!?”
 

 
“Urgh…”
 
Shocked by the headlines, I almost drop the shogi piece I’m holding.
 
“Since when did I become the 4th member…?”
 
“Well, public opinion, you know. If that’s what everyone thinks then it can’t be helped, right?”
 
“Don’t give me that ‘it can’t be helped’ face!”
 
I didn’t agree to being treated as an extra warrior.
 
Don’t go deciding things on your own!
 
“But it’s scary to find out Japan itself was in crisis without us even knowing, right?”
 
“Yeah. Since it was before we officially became the Justice Crusaders, there was probably no one who could do anything but you.”
 
“…Well, that’s true.”
 
At the very least in that situation, I was the only one who could somehow deal with that monster.
 
But…
 
“It’s not like I beat him alone.”
 
I didn’t defeat monster Earth alone.
 
“There were people who fought Earth together with me. Without powered suits they did everything they possibly could…and entrusted the rest to me.”
 
Some survived, and some sacrificed their lives.
 
That’s why I couldn’t forgive Earth for cowardly trying to flee due to fearing for his own life after being driven into a corner.
 
“…Those records were also released.”
 
“I see.”
 
If they know the real heroes weren’t me, that’s enough.
 
Thinking that, I smile and place a piece on the board.
 
“Oh, check.”
 
“Huh?”
 
Wait, a check came flying from a completely unexpected place!?
 

 
“Sorry for the wait. I brought sweets.”
 
About 30 minutes after we started shogi, a girl with a voice far too bright for the room comes in.
 
With light brown hair woven into three braids, Yellow tilts her head puzzled at me not reacting with the pieces hanging from my downturned head.
 
“Uh, what’s wrong? Katsumi, making a face like that and all dejected…”
 
“…………”
 
Below my downcast eyes is the shogi board. With most of my major pieces captured, and my king stripped bare, I’m about to suffer unknown number of checks.
 
“It’s your turn.”
 
“Um, can I pause?”
 
“Mercy is useless. Go ahead.”
 
“U-um, check.”
 
Red places a piece and declares check.
 
“Ngg…”
 
No escape, with barely any pieces left to rely on.
 
“W-what do you do…Katsumi…?”
 
No way, she’s naturally strong!?
 
I don’t doubt she’s a beginner.
 
But her worthless moves turn into the optimal ones, striking my unguarded body…!!
 
I was pretty confident at this kind of game, but what gives!?
 
“I-I lost…”
 
Humiliating declaration of defeat.
 
But admitting defeat here is less pathetic, so I graciously accept my loss.
 
“Hmm, for some reason I’m starting to feel really unpleasant…”
 
“Akane, you’re making a face you shouldn’t show people, are you okay?”
 
I just normally lost, but normally had fun.
 
Come to think of it, it’s been a while…since I played games like this.
 
“…It should have been a while.”
 
For a moment, I steady my blurred vision and look up.
 
I was cornered quite skillfully.
 
As expected of the leader of the Justice Crusaders…
 
“I just happen to have Reversi, want to play everyone?”
 
“I have no idea what you mean by ‘just happen to have’…”
 
“Let’s play, let’s play!”
 
A scene so carefree it’s annoying.
 
At some point, I’ve gotten used to these kinds of situations…but have I changed at all by being here?


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