ACT IV – As You and I live in a Different World
It was Kazuya and a Kappaneko friend who told me that Stray Tenshi Madoura had been taken away.
The two of them, even though restoring the area was important (they looked like they were tying up tons of thick logs) they had gone to the lake where I had first run into Hikaru-chan. There they had seen the Sailor Tenshi’s Masenshi (translator’s note: this means Evil Army, but I like the term so I’m going to use it) take away Madoura… I mean Ayukawa Madoka.
I immediately grabbed a hold of Kazuya and teleported us to the lake.
“Damn! Which way, Kazuya? Ayukawa… which way did they take Ayukawa Madoka?”
“It’s okay, don’t worry Kyousuke-niichan. When we’re talking about ‘I’ll forgive you’ you don’t have to get upset. If I’m not mistaken, the Devil Adeluf’s hideout is an island right in the midst of this lake.
Just like before, the lake was shrouded by a thick fog.
I could see considerably further than when I met Hikaru-chan. There was an island in the midst of this lake? As I thought this Kazuya read my thoughts and said. “He he. It is our irresponsible Hatta’s Manga, after all. Somewhere in the middle of the serialization, the size of the lake got changed.”
If I took my trusty Cannon Camera and used the telephoto lens, I should be able to see through the fog. That was all I could think of as I used the finder and focused.
From the view of the camera lens the fog cleared, and a fortress-like island floated up.
“You can see the devil’s hideout! Let me see, let me see!”
“Idiot. You couldn’t do it yet at you Power.”
Using all the Power I could I did a close-up of the fortress and then I could hear some kind of commotion.
In a moment, I could hear everything clearly.
“Heh heh… Stray Tenshi Madoura, once you meet Devil Adeluf-sama, you’ll return to normal.”
That was… Akane? Ah, no, the voice of Sailor Tenshi Akane. Sure enough, there through my finder appeared Madoka, in the hands of the Sailor Tenshi, being dragged to the Devil’s hideout.
“Kyousuke-niichan! You’ve spotted Madoka-neechan?”
“Kazuya. Return to the village.”
“Oh, come on…”
Paying no attention to Kazuya, I teleported through the finder of the camera.
“Hey! Oniichan…!” Kazuya shouted. With a deafening sound I entered a different plane and vanished.
Before my eyes was incredible light and heat. Then in a twinkling I could see the Masenshi pressing in on Madoka.
At the top of my lungs I shouted, “Ayukawa…!”
And then it felt like a great scene from Hatta’s Manga.
I’m sorry (well, not really), but then I gave an abundant display of the Kasuga family Power. Maybe Hatta would have thought it appropriate. All kinds of shapes of Masenshi had their souls devoured.
Then I freed Madoka and she yelled “You still don’t remember!” while standing to face the Sailor Tenshi.
However… once said it was clear we were out-numbered. For someone like me who isn’t a fan of Hatta’s Manga I had no idea what it would be like to fight the Devil Adeluf. The first priority would be to get the hell out of here!
I ran up to Madoka, who was just about to attack Manami Sailor Pink and yelled “Madoka!” and grabbed her from behind.
“Wh… what are you doing?”
“Don’t take it the wrong way – we’ve got to get out of here now!”
“Hold on tight!”
Madoka’s eyes got even bigger. But this wasn’t the time for explanations.
With all my might I held on to Madoka and teleported.
“Where… where are we?” This was the first time Madoka had gone through jumping to another plane, and it surprised her.
When you enter the time stream, you float and read the magnetic patters while you move. But for a normal person like Madoka, it would just be brilliantly colored lights… In other words, floating through all these lights, the sensation of something powerful flying behind one would be a bit (okay, a lot) unsettling, no doubt.
15-year old Madoka, upon seeing these bewitching lights, grasped my shoulders with great force.
I spite of myself I… curiously enough, called her by that name. While she couldn’t believe what she was seeing, she looked back at me.
Ah… those adult-like eyes of Madoka that I would someday fall in love with.
“Before… that story about coming from outside of this world.”
“That… that place… I… a different me lives there.”
“Kasuga-kun… you and I… are close there.”
“I… Kasuga-kun’s power… I know about it?”
“Er, uh, you mean, this power?”
“You know… Now, at any rate.”
“I… I couldn’t tell you. At that time… but I’ve spoken of the Kasuga family power to Ayukawa… I’ve told Madoka.”
That… that my life and Ayukawa Madoka’s will be so wrapped into each other.
That we’ll be deeply in love…
“Kasuga-kun? What’s wrong?”
“Ayukawa… we’re back at the edge of the lake.” Avoiding her single-minded inquiry, I brought us out, standing where I had been with Kazuya earlier.
It appeared that Kazuya had gone back to the village. My trusty Canon was placed on a rock, waiting to take me home.
“You take a picture of the bad things of this world?” Madoka said, holding the Canon.
“Uh, yeah. According to the Elder of the Kappaneko, if I do that things return to normal… at least peace will return to the Kappaneko world.”
“Hey…” Madoka gave a small meaningful sigh… but soon her voice dropped. “But… after that Kasuga-kun… then what?”
“Kasuga-kun… you’re not from this world, right?”
“Ah, uh huh…”
“I see… you’ll disappear won’t you,” Madoka said with a sigh.
“So you’ll go… strange isn’t it?”
“Eh? Wha… what is?”
The Kasuga-kun I met… the Kasuga-kun I gave the red straw hat to… where do you suppose he is?”
I… somehow… now I noticed that she was feeling awkward about it.
The Madoka before me, 15-year old Madoka… the Kappaneko came to the human world and brought her back here. In the real world the actual Madoka was still there… in other words the one I would become close to was still living there…
This Ayukawa Madoka… this Madoka who lived in the Kappaneko wonderland… maybe, this one who gave Kasuga Kyousuke the red straw hat could never see him again.
That careless remark of mine “Your fate and mine are bound together”… this girl could only line in this world. She might have to forget about the Kasuga Kyousuke she gave the red straw hat to.
“What’s with you?” Madoka’s voice suddenly came back.
“This other world. A different world… well then, the Ayukawa Madoka who becomes close to Kasuga-kun… that me, is so much the same, but is another person.”
The 15-year old Madoka seemed scared. Before being left alone, she had come to understand things on her own. It would help ease the paid she would feel afterwards.
She’s probably been able to do this since she was a child, when her parents went abroad and left her alone… from before she met me she’s been able to brace herself this way I think… but for this younger Ayukawa Madoka it seemed like a cruel thing.
Something warm pressed against my lips. My heart skipped a beat. 15-year old Ayukawa Madoka’s quivering lips met mine.
Her sorrow… she fell into my arms… with such energy and force… my breath was labored and my nerves paralyzed.
After that long kiss, my pulse was so strong you could hear it. I felt full of guilt. Even supposing that Madoka started it, I had no idea now if kissing her would make the wound deeper or not.
But… 15-year old Madoka, as if nothing had even happened, used my camera to take pictures of the lake, and in a cheerful voice said, “When?”
“Eh? Wh… when?”
“Well, becoming so close to you, how old was Ayukawa Madoka when you kissed?”
“A, ah… ei… eighteen, I think?”
“I’m still 15… so I beat her.”
“Even though… you’re more an Ojisan.”
“Oh, hey now…”
Then, this young girl Madoka laughed and tossed me the camera; the flash went off and the shutter clicked.
…But then… I…
That time, her smile… that spirited front of hers was nowhere to be seen.
Then, “Aah, darling, you’re safe!”
Again Hikaru-chan and Kazuya ran up. Then the worst things of all began.
The Devil Adeluf, once informed of my power, was personally leading his army towards the Kappaneko village.
“Oh… oh no!”
“Ah… Darling. We have to do it right away…”
“Eh? Wh… do what?”
“Come on Kyousuke-niichan. Marry Hikaru-chan of course.”
Hikaru moaned. “Kyada kyada. Hikaru went to such pains, took time… wanted romance… so boldly… Da… ha ha ha! I wanted to go slow! Right? Darling?”
I looked sideways to Madoka. But she a cut me sharp look and started taking pictures.
As the Elder had said, when Hikaru-chan and I came together… when Hikaru-chan’s virgin power and my Power combined… what kind of power would result I couldn’t fathom.
That kind of power should be able to suppress the Devil Adeluf’s army.
(Whether I wanted to do this with Hikaru-chan or not was beside the point!) Now there didn’t seem to be another way.
“A… anyway, back to the village!” I said with a bit of fresh resolve. Then, Madoka, who hadn’t taken part in the conversation, with her kimagure personality looked me square in the face but addressed Hikaru-chan.
“Okay. Now Hikaru. You have sex with Kasuga-kun, and Madoka-san will be the cameraman,” she said so stubbornly, while looking only at me.
…At that moment, my heart skipped a beat.
This was unbelievable; on the other hand Hikaru-chan seemed so happy. I just wanted to vanish. Alone. Anywhere.
To Act V and beyond.....