"Geez...", Oxide sighed whilst playing with his drink. Val could only curiously look at her brother while still cleaning a counter.
"What's up Nii-san1? You look rather bothered", Mikazuki said while continuing cleaning her butterfly swords.
"You know... I just can't grasp what this game actually means", Oxide said bluntly. Mikazuki stopped her hands the same time with Val stopped cleaning the counter. "I mean you know what they said at the start. 'Will you fight for honour, or fight for your life?'. What exactly does that even mean?".
Val and Mikazuki stares blankly at Oxide, not knowing what the answer to his question would be and thinking seriously about the same question in Oxide's mind. Oxide while deep in thought decided to gave up on pursuing the answer for that question only to realize he made two girl's face turn blank and anxious.
"H- Hey... You don't really have to think about it you know. It's just me blurting out what was on my mind.", he gave a calm down gesture towards the girls with his signature sincere smile. Val turned back to her senses, meanwhile Mikazuki was still deep in thought.
Oxide rose up from his chair and walked towards the exit. On the way he stopped in front of Mikazuki and patted her head. "You know Mika-chan2, if you really want to find out the answer to that question go ask X about it. Although he doesn't look like it, he's really the best guy you can ask about these kind of things", Oxide told Mikazuki in a way where only she could hear him.
"Alright! I'm outta here! See ya later girls", Oxide exclaimed as he leisurely walked out of the front door.
"Ask that idiot? How can I even do that?", Mikazuki asked herself as she walked alone. She was on her way back to her lodging from the new restaurant Val opened. She stared at the sky hoping to clear her mind. However, the same question keeps on playing in her mind, 'Will you fight for honour, or fight for your life?'.
"Get out of my head already.... This is annoying", she said as she held her head and shaking it around.
"What the hell are you talking to yourself for?", a voice from behind Mikazuki said. Mikazuki jumped and promptly looked back to find X right behind her. In contrast of X's obnoxious poker face, Mikazuki's face was flushed red due to embarrassment.
"Wha- What are you doing here?!", she snapped at X.
"Wha- What does that even mean?!", X shrugged as in saying I don't know what to say. "S- So how much did you hear?", Mikazuki's head dropped as she faced X.
"Something about asking an idiot something"
"Oh... Yeah... About that...", Mikazuki stuttered a bit. "You're the idiot I meant"
"What the hell...", X sighed after knowing he was the idiot Mikazuki meant. "Is this going to take long?"
"Might be... Are you in a rush?"
"Then you don't want me to talk with you?", Mikazuki gave a saddened face due to mocking X earlier.
"I never said that", X said as he looked away from Mikazuki.
"Then?", Mikazuki's eyebrow raised.
"Let's go the to park nearby"
It was around 11 o'clock at night. X and Mikazuki walked towards the park with no interchanging words on the way. Mikazuki kept on fidgeting her fingers all the way towards the park, while X simply strode lazily as usual. Around them are some people enjoying the park on their own way.
The two walked towards the pond with a clock tower in the middle of the park. It was unusually quiet there. Mikazuki went ahead and sat on a nearby bench as X fiddles with his menu.
"Catch", X said as he tossed a bottle of Zutto Berry juice at Mikazuki. Mikazuki reacted a little late but was able to caught the bottle anyway.
"Umm... Thanks", Mikazuki looked at X with a slight smile.
"So... What's it about?", X slumped down on the bench beside Mikazuki. He opened his bottle and started drinking his juice.
"Well... How do I put it?"
"Something bothering you?"
"Sort of...", Mikazuki started looking more depressed as she started to think about how to tell X about her worries. "You see... It's about that catch phrase or something we heard at the start of the game"
"Will you fight for honour, or fight for your life?", X blurted out the exact question playing in Mikazuki's mind.
"Yes... That one", Mikazuki answered. She held the bottle she received from X even tighter. "I can't find the answer to that question every single time it plays in my mind"
"It bothers me", she said as she faced X's face. X looked back at her with his hideous eyes to find Mikazuki staring into his eyes. X didn't expect her to look at his eyes directly like that and threw his gaze into the distance.
"Why would it bother you so much?", X asked her and got the courage to look straight into Mikazuki's eyes.
"It's just... So many things had happened after coming into this world", Mikazuki said with her voice starting to shake. "I've witnessed a lot of deaths in this game and thought that one day it would occur to me.", Mikazuki held X's left hand with both her hands. Her head was pointed downwards in a way that X couldn't see her eyes even through her bangs.
"You see... My mom is bedridden and isn't really someone with a stable emotion. She would always get bothered by little things. That's why I have to take care of her everyday since my dad had passed away a couple of years ago. My bigger brother also dropped out of school to find a job and keep our family alive. Now I'm just a burden to them", Mikazuki's hands covered her eyes as she started to cry in front of X.
"Didn't I told you before? You can only rely on yourself in this eat or be eaten game. About the real world, you can't do anything yet", X pulled Mikazuki's head towards his chest and allowed her to rest her head there. He patted Mikazuki's white-greyish hair slowly in hope of calming her down.
"You know... What you do and what you say is the exact opposite isn't it?", Mikazuki pouts and lightly hit X's chest without moving her head away from him.
"Look who's talking", X scoffed and rested his head on Mikazuki's.
After a couple of minutes passed in silence, X slowly stood up from the bench. Mikazuki was shocked at first, but she then moved away from X's chest.
"What are you doing?", Mikazuki asked as X took off his black trench coat and threw it at Mikazuki.
"It's getting cold. Use it and follow me", said X, who was now only using his black short-sleeved turtle neck.
"Wh- What do you mean by that? That's creepy!", Mikazuki jumped as she thought of something strange. X could only looked at her with an annoyed face.
"If you're thinking about something weird, then you're the one who's weird.", X said as he walked towards the clock tower. "I'm just gonna show you something, that's all". Although Mikazuki had her doubts, she still followed behind X and put on X's trench coat while walking.
X stopped at the bridge connecting the side of the pond to the clock tower and took a look at his reflection on the pond. Mikazuki followed him while still wondering what X is doing.
"Why did you follow me?", X suddenly said.
"Didn't you told me to?", Mikazuki gave a confused look at X.
"What would happen if I tossed you into the water now?", X glared at Mikazuki's eyes. Mikazuki's eyes widened and took a step back.
"Wh- Why are you asking that?!"
"No reason", X said as he faced away from Mikazuki. Mikazuki scratched her head then walked closer to X again.
"Didn't I just told you that I might throw you into the pond?"
"You're not going t-", Mikazuki was cut before finishing her sentence by X pushing her towards the water. However, X didn't push that hard that Mikazuki fell off the bridge's railing.
"What was that about?!", Mikazuki got enraged at X and pushed him off the bridge. "Wha- I didn't mean that to happen!", she exclaimed after she realized what she did.
X stood up on the pool and walked towards the bridge's railing. "You came close to me at first. Now you pushed me over. Does that tell you anything?", Mikazuki gave a confused face accompanied by a slight huh sound from her mouth. "You acted on impulse did you?", X asked. Mikazuki gave a slight nod. X climbed the railing and stood in front of Mikazuki.
"You're not making sense", Mikazuki pouted as she gave X's trench coat back.
"How do I say it right?", X said as he took the trench coat and put it on. "It's the right thing to do according to you isn't it?".
"I'm not sure"
"You just don't realize you did it. It's something like reflex"
"If you put it that way... I guess you're right", Mikazuki conceded as she sighed.
"So... Will you fight for honour, or fight for your life?"
"I... I don't know", Mikazuki's head dropped as she heard the same question again.
"You're the only one who could answer that question", X said as he start walking away from Mikazuki. Mikazuki's head dropped even lower after X passed her.
After a couple of steps, X stopped and said "I'm going to fight for both". Mikazuki's eyes widen and turned her head towards X. He looked back at her and gave a slight smile at Mikazuki, "What you think is the right thing to do is your honour. And you have to fight for your life to survive, especially when you have people back at the real world waiting for you. So what I'm gonna do is fight for both"
"I see...", Mikazuki gave a smile back at X. "Sorry for pushing you into the pond earlier"
"Why did you think I took my coat off?", X asked her. Mikazuki could only gave a curious look. "There's a huge chance a reckless girl like you would do that", X said as he walked away from her.
Mikazuki threw the unopened juice bottle at X and hit his head.
"Hey I paid that for you!", X said in an annoyed tone and took the juice bottle at the ground. Mikazuki laughed and rushed towards X.
"Thanks for the drink!", she said as she took the bottle away from X's hands and drank it.
"What the hell...", X glared at Mikazuki with his obnoxious eyes. "Whatever... Let's go back", he finally gave up. Mikazuki nodded and followed X from behind.
"Everything...", Mikazuki finished her juice. "You're not as bad as I thought you would be"
"What the hell is that supposed to mean?", X scoffed at Mikazuki's comment.
"Nothing", Mikazuki said in a playful way.
1 Onii-chan is pretty mich like big brother. And yes, Mikazuki is also now caught up with Oxide's "everyone's big brother" campaign↩
2 Mikazuki's nickname used by Oxide and Val↩