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.hack//C.S. Chapter 2

Chapter 2
2. The Water Capital, Mac Anu

 

Today, Mac Anu once more shimmers a beautiful madder red.  The grace with which the water glitters each time the surface is disturbed could make one say it’s better than real.

Ikaruga will never tire of watching the sunset.  He sits in the same place he always does, on his designated seat on the highest point of Mac Anu’s sole bridge.  He heard through rumors in the wind that long ago, another PC also used to sit in that same spot.  He has no doubt that that person also enjoyed watching the sunset.  I’d like to meet that person.

But, it’ll never happen.  Ikaruga has recently learned that that PC stopped logging in.  It’s impossible.  Regardless, he continues visiting the heavy trafficked bridge.  For him, it is the most relaxing place in The World.  The way he sits without even trembling could make those passing by think he’s either dozing or AFK.

Ikaruga’s name is surprisingly well known.  He’s easily recognized by the fluttering of his wafuku and the hairclip obscuring his eyes from view.[1]  He’s also a difficult person to approach thanks to his small fan club, placing him in a similar position to Endurance.

As for Ikaruga’s strength, that is something no one talks about.  He is a true, genuine, solo player.  He never parties with anyone, nor does he PK.  As a result, various rumors have come and gone.  Some stated that he’s actually an independent AI or an event character.  Ikaruga himself doesn’t really care.  He simply appears around the same time every day to watch his favored sunset.

Ikaruga rests his elbows on the handrails as he watches the river.  Another peaceful day.  He closes his eyes and loses himself to his thoughts.

A female harvest cleric[2] and female therianthrope warlock with catlike features speak to each other on the side of the bridge with the chaos gate.  The warlock is fairly small, forcing the harvest cleric to bend down in order to face her.

“Hold on… you can’t ; ;”

The warlock shakes off the harvest cleric’s restraint and runs towards Ikaruga.  “He~ki, he~ki (-w-)b”  Instead of running, her momentum makes her look like she’s charging.

The warlock leaps once she’s 1 meter away from Ikaruga and lands on the handrail in front of him.  He jumps back at her sudden appearance.  The surrounding PC gather to watch.  Each of them is surprised that Ikaruga moved.  The warlock then plops herself down on the handrail right in front of Ikaruga.

The harvest cleric can only hold her head at the scene.  Members of the public watch from afar.  Among them are members of Ikaruga’s fan club.  They watch with keen interest.  Out in the real world, the female players probably have their fingers hovering over the SS key.

After a few moments pass, Ikaruga speaks first.  “…Hey.”

The warlock points her ears towards Ikaruga, but otherwise, doesn’t move.  The action may have irritated him because he draws his sword.

The warlock finally speaks.  “How daangerous…”

“That’s my spot.  Scram, chibi-neko[3].”

Ikaruga glares at the warlock with his blue eyes as he thrusts the tip of his sword towards her.  Silence = cool, however, isn’t always the paradigm.  The warlock narrows her eyes at Ikaruga’s form and for some reason becomes relieved.  She says, “That’s great.  Looks like you’re “alive”.”

Ikaruga sheathes his sword as her meaningless comment douses his fighting spirit.&

nbsp; “Ha?  …Well obviously.”

“I, am interested in you.  Please keep me company for a bit…”

Ikaruga gives a sharp, “Not happening.”

“Then, let me watch you.”

“…You…  Fine, if you’re just going to watch, then that makes you no different from everyone else.”  He then glances over his shoulder towards his fan club.

She shocks many members of the fan club members by saying, “Thanks, (o ~_^)b”

“Although, they might end up getting in your way.”

“I’m good *2.  I can watch just fine as long as you stay in the open~.”

“…Haa.”

Since then, whenever Ikaruga goes to the bridge, the warlock appears at his side.  Neither of them speak to each other, they just watch the sunset.  The only real change is the envy that can sometimes be found within the eyes of his fan club…

And so, 1 week passes.

Ikaruga goes to a leveling area, but the warlock doesn’t appear.  Or, more accurate, she couldn’t go there.  She can only observe Ikaruga on the highest point of Mac Anu’s bridge.

After that one week, Ikaruga finally says, “…So, I still haven’t heard your name.”

Confusion washes over the warlock’s face.  She points towards the sky above her head and says, “It should be right here~.  I thought you didn’t ask because you can see it?”

“…There’s nothing there.”

“Maybe it somehow became hidden?  You’re somewhat like a beginner…”

Ikaruga mumbles a short soliloquy.  “…Maybe it isn’t hidden, but instead it just left.”

The warlock, unable to hear him, leans forward and says, “What’s that~?”

Ikaruga separates from the handrail and walks for the gate.  He says, “Nothing, thinking about it, I’m fine not knowing your name.”

The warlock calls out to Ikaruga, “How strange, going hunting at a time like this~.”  He, however, continues without a word.  All that can be heard is the faint ringing of the return bell.  The warlock releases a small sigh and then shouts, “I’m !  Don’t forget it (`o’)”

Ikaruga’s head flinches at those words.

T/N: And here is the first real chapter of the second side project.  As you can tell, it’s a short one.  I’m not 100% certain, but I think all of them are more or less this length.  Anyway, I hope you all like this series.  Like Yuusha Ni, I’m reading as I translate so I have no idea as to what’s happening.  I’ve also never played any of the .hack games so I may be even more clueless than some of you.  I have, however, watched the .hack//sign anime.

Let me know what you think,

-Gandire

[1] First, a wafuku is a type of kimono.  Second, I said hairclip, but it could really be any type of hair accessory like a barrette, hairband, hair tie, etc.

[2] The kanji doesn’t actually say harvest cleric.  The class specified isn’t one that exists.  I picked harvest cleric because it’s middle kanji most resembles this class’s unknown kanji.

3 Chibi= small  Neko=cat

<

3. Chaos Gate>>


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