Arifureta - Chapter 194
Arifureta After - Protector of Angel
AN: My nose isn't stop dripping......
Everyone too, please be very careful against cold.
A famous foreign manufacture car(Mercedes Benz) that was reputed to be the firmest in the world was gallantly driving on the road along the coast. The car frame that was shining silver showed how it was well polished, making anyone who saw it understood how much the owner cherished it.
Inside that car, the sea breeze that flowed in from the opened window and the classic song that was the favorite of the car owner were flowing, making the time of the people riding that car to pass in relaxation.
「This sea route still feel pleasant every time we come here.」
Yes, the refreshing voice that expressed the feeling of this drive, was the driver of this car and also its owner――Shirasaki Tomoichi. His hair that was lightly flowing to the back and long slitted bit gentle eyes, his balanced body despite his age that was at the middle of his forty, just from his appearance he was a handsome man that could pass as a man that was still in his late twenty.
And then, sitting beside Tomoichi was a woman that nodded at Tomoichi's words while saying「You're right, no matter how many times we come here, this is a really good place」, was Shirasaki Kaoruko. Looking from her straight black hair without any white hair, her droopy eyes, the neat and clean atmosphere she was clad with, she was a woman that felt like a lady. She was the same like Tomoichi with her age in the middle of her forty, but she still looked young like a woman in her late twenty.
Just like their family name showed, both of them were married couple. Just from their atmosphere it could be clearly seen how they had been building a satisfactory marital relationship.
But, even while Tomoichi's consciousness was concentrating on the driving, it didn't seem like he was paying attention at his wife. Since before he kept glancing at the rearview mirror and repeatedly paid attention at the rear seat. Even his impression of the drive just now seemed to be a bit forced if someone listened carefully, rather than saying that it was his true feeling it was more a lure for starting conversation. And then, it was clear that the cause of that was the passenger at the rear seat.
Hearing no other response to his words other than from his wife, Tomoichi coughed「A, ahem」, this cough was also seemed to be forced, and then he once again formed his words to try to attract the attention of the person at the passenger seat. This happened while his wife beside him was giggling at him.
「O, Ojii-chan and Obaa-chan, their age is already quite old, so how about we move here soon? A home near the sea is nice don't you think? Hey, what do you think? Kaori?」
The cold voice and words that came back caused Tomoichi to let out a small groan「Uguu」. And then, he once more began glancing repeatedly at the back mirror to look at his beloved daughter――Kaori's expression who was sitting at the back.
Kaori was emitting an assertion「I am displeasured desu!」from her whole body while staring fixedly to outside, as though to say that she absolutely wouldn't meet Tomoichi's eyes. But even with such super displeasured mode being turned on, her sitting without putting her elbow on the window or crossing her arms, but instead her two hands were put on her lap with her posture straight, it really was like Kaori.
Tomoichi further talked with an expression that looked a little desperate at such Kaori.
「I, is that so? At the past, each time we came to play here, didn't you always said 'I still don't want to go home!'. Remember, Riko-chan who live next door, or your cousin Sakura-chan, you always played together with them right? I think moving here is not really ba――」
「Then, isn't it fine if Otou-san move here alone?」
「!? No way!? That's too much you know, Kaoriii!」
With a snap Tomoichi turned around to the back seat. The Benz of Shirasaki family was zigzagging! A string slap landed on Tomoichi's face! Tomoichi's face was forcefully faced to the front!
A call「Dear?」from Kaoriko that made Tomoichi felt a small, but intense chill resounded inside the car. 「Forgive me」Tomoichi honestly apologized. Tomoichi knew really well. That the true anger of his wife was like a production machine of trauma. In his dream, the Shiro Yasha-san was making appearance! (TN: Shiro Yasha=white demon)
「Geez, dear you really......there is no way Kaori will accept that suggestion right? There is Shizuku-chan, and also her friends at school back there.」
「Pe, perhaps that's true but......」
Tomoichi's eyes were swimming while he was feeling stinging pain on his cheek. Seeming very reluctance, he whispered「Even so, I think that idea is not bad though......」
Currently Shirazaki family was heading to the home of Tomoichi's parents where both his parents and his older brother and his wife were living. Tomoichi's elder brother and his wife had a daughter that was four year older than Kaori. That daughter was a really helpful daughter even though she could be a bit frank, she was an existence that was like a big sister for Kaori. The home was near the sea, so the two of them often played at sea together with Riko of Ayasaki family who lived next door.
Kaori was an only child, because of that too she really idolized Sakura, when Kaori was little she often clung at Sakura while throwing tantrum「I don't want to go home yet」. Due to that, Tomoichi was thinking, could Kaori possibly consider moving there even now......could she be distanced from that nasty shitty brat......and so on, but.......
Kaoruko who seemed to clearly grasp those thinking inside Tomoichi's heart was giggling while saying about the thing that Tomoichi didn't want to hear the most, about the reason why Kaori was displeasured, about the young man that was the reason that Kaori absolutely wouldn't accept moving home.
「Beside, you see? There is no way that Kaori will leave the town where Hajime-kun is don't you think?」
「Stop it Kaoruko! This is our long-awaited family's homecoming without any outsider you know!? Don't say anything about that shitty brat who dare to make a pass at the cute angel of our family――」
Tomoichi felt a chill at his back and twitched. He understood even without looking. This was, a presence that really resembled his wife's! It would be there if he looked back! The incarnation of fury that his daughter inherited from her mother before he noticed――the Hannya-san!
But, just with this much, Otou-san wouldn't lose. For the sake of his beloved daughter, the apple of his eye!
「Ka, Kaori, calm down? My words just now is a bit poor. But, as expected Otou-san, about that bagwor――ahem-. That tras――ehem-. That shitty――」
「......I'm going home right now. I won't listen anymore to what Otou-san say.」
「Nooo! Kaori, listen to what I'm saying! Otou-san is thinking what is best for Kaori's sake......」(TN: Here Tomoichi is saying nooo in English.)
「Otou-san is badmouthing Hajime-kun, because Otou-san is thinking what's best for me? I never thought that Otou-san is that kind of person.」
「You are wrong, Kaori! Even Otou-san doesn't want to say bad thing about, Ha, Haji, Haji――about that guy. But, but still? While that bastard already has Kaori, he still made many other girls to serve him and open their legs for him, on top of that instead of feeling guilt, he is acting defiant you know? Do you think there is any father that can entrust his daughter to that kind of shitty bastard? No, such father doesn't exist! I'm telling this for your own good. Kaori, cut your relation with that cocky rubbish scum――」
「I hate someone like Otou-san so much!」
Tomoichi who was hit by the speech that would empty the HP of the father at the whole country if it was said to them by their daughter, caused the car to zigzag once more. With tears gathering at the corner of his eye, Tomoichi was leaking out the voice「No waaay, Kaorii, My Angeeeel~」looking really pathetic. (TN: The 'my angel' here is said in English.)
A few months after Kaori returned home from the other world Tortus. Tomoichi and Kaoruko were already introduced to Hajime. From the beginning, before the summoning, Tomoichi and Kaoruko already knew that Kaori had a boy in her mind, but putting aside Kaoruko, from the start Tomoichi was already unable to stomach that boy――Hajime.
It wasn't like Tomoichi had a clear reason. It was the feeling of a father whose really treasured daughter might be taken from him, that feeling might even be called as a conditioned reflex. Tomoichi sometimes even bared his hostility toward Kouki and Ryutaro. If he acted like that even to the childhood friends of his daughter, then Hajime who had started to live inside his daughter's heart before he noticed was already like his sworn enemy, that really couldn't be helped.
Naturally, because this was Tomoichi whose level as doting parent had already reached the max value, when Kaori disappeared it was already a disaster for him. At that time Kaoruko's physical condition also worsened, but Shirasaki family somehow held on by borrowing the help of the elder brother's family and their parents, and also their whole relatives.
And then, his beloved daughter returned home like miracle. They were told about the truth of the disappearance which scared them out of their wits from various things, and then they were shown many mystics in order to prove Kaori's story, naturally all of those were a succession of astonishment for them but......there was a matter that was really hard to forgive, to the degree that all those absurdity seemed like trivial matter.
Yes, it was the matter about how his beloved daughter(My Angel) had made a lover.
Furthermore, that lover had several other lovers other than Kaori, he didn't even have any intention to separate from any of those lovers, and at the end he started talking about taking them all as wives. 'Are you making a fool of me-, you bastard!' Tomoichi roared angrily like that many times......
On top of that, the daughter in question was accepting of such harem situation and making a really happy expression that even Tomoichi had never saw before. She was saying, 'together with the other girls!'. Hearing that, just how many times Tomoichi was yelling angrily 'You bastaaard, you are putting my daughter under some strange magic aren't you! No, it absolutely must be like that, you harmful pest-!'......
Furthermore, the speech that all the fathers in the whole country feared that someday it might be said to them, no, the speech that the fathers had resolved they wouldn't let any man said! ――「Father-in-law, please give your daughter to me!」, that speech instead became「Father-in-law, I received your daughter. Please take care of me from here on too」. When that curve ball was thrown to Tomoichi, he very naturally thought this, 「Yosh, let's kill this guy」.
Everything was for the sake of his beloved daughter, to protect her from a bad man. Yet despite so, when he was about to punch the bastard, the one who pinioned him from the back was the daughter herself. While Hajime who was about to be punched was only kept sitting calmly and composedly. That self-assured attitude (Hajime himself was aware that he had something that was the worst, so he was only waiting to be punched) was also something he couldn't stomach! Tomoichi who was raging「This shitty bastarddd-, I'll beat you to deathhhhh!」like that in the end was stopped by Kaori「Otou-san, calm dooooown!」with a suplex. Because Tomoichi lost consciousness, the meeting at that time was dissolved just like that but......
After that, Tomoichi knew that actually Kaori had already climbed the stair of adulthood, which caused Tomoichi's killing intent to climb without knowing the place to stop.
This time too, actually Kaori wanted to participate at Nagumo family's little gathering. But Tomoichi who thought 'No way I'll let my daughter go to the devil's place' hurriedly made schedule to visit his parents and took along Kaori half forcefully.
When Kaori was in the middle of talking to Hajime about the arrangement, Tomoichi took away Kaori's phone and said to the phone「Kaori has a plan! She is going to spend her holiday with me! From here on too she won't have any opening in her plan! Don't call anymore, you scum bastard!」, and then he cut the connection as he pleased.
Naturally, Kaori was getting angry to her father's doing, but Tomoichi only looked aside with a huff and turned a deaf ear at Kaori. While that was happening, Hajime used telepathy to Kaori saying「You should spend time with your family this time. Actually, I really understand how your father is feeling」with a wry smile, and so Kaori reluctantly acquiesced to visit her grandparents.
Although, Kaori's mood who had her phone call taken over as it pleased and on top of that her lover got abusive language spouted to him was at its lowest, so since they departed from their home, Tomoichi was desperate in currying favor to his daughter.
「Come on you two. Leave it at this, we are going to arrive soon see.」
While smiling wryly at the cold war (one-sided) between father and daughter, Kaoruko intermediated between them. Just as she said, before they realized they had entered a residential area and in front of the car, a splendid house with two buildings that they were really familiar with began to become visible.
While being concerned of Kaori's state, Tomoichi stopped the car at the road shoulder in front of the house. In the middle, *garigari*, an ominous scraping sound that should not come from a high class car could be heard, but such thing was only a trivial matter for Tomoichi who was hopelessly bothered with his daughter's state. He left aside the expression of his wife that was looking like she had a headache.
Kaori immediately got down from the car without saying anything. Tomoichi also hurriedly got down from the car and took out the luggage from the car trunk.
「Kaori. Otou-san will carry the luggage for you!」
They planned to stay for three or four days, so Kaori's luggage was Boston bag sized. Tomoichi carried that luggage while speaking smilingly, but Kaori walked briskly to him and tore off her luggage from him with a huff.
「It's only until the entrance, Otou-san is too exaggerating. ......If it's Hajime-kun, he will naturally bring the luggage without saying anything like that.」
「!? Is, is that so!? Ha, Haji......that bastard, earning point in petty way like that(Hajime-kun, really is a considerate child isn't he~)」
「......Haah. Dear, your true feeling and surface attitude are reversed there you know.」
Kaori averted her face 'Puiihh!!' from Tomoichi who was plainly leaking out his true feeling without hiding it at all, and then like that she ignored Tomoichi and walked away briskly. Tomoichi fell on his knees at the entrance of the house. His figure that was on all fours with his head hanging down was really inviting pity......
「......Just when I thought that you all finally arrived. Oji-san, what are you doing in that kind of place? The neighbors are looking, so I want you stop doing that though.」(TN: Oji-san=uncle)
When Kaori was about to ring the chime of the door, a residence of the house that seemed to come from the backyard circling the house to the front called with a voice that sounded exasperated and astonished.
「Welcome Kaori. As always, it looks like it's difficult for you about various things, but I'm glad that you look energetic. Just relax slowly here.」
Kaori smiled widely at the owner of that voice――her cousin Shirasaki Sakura and embraced her.
Sakura who was a female college student had straight brown hair. She was a beautiful woman with well proportion body like a model (TN: The words used here has the meaning beautiful well-proportioned woman (body 8 times longer than head)). The features of her face itself vaguely resembled Kaori, but the atmosphere she was clad in was basically cool. She felt like the so-called frank girl. Her hand was holding a hose that was trickling water, so surely she was just watering the garden before this.
Sakura's cool gaze softened at her cousin that was like a little sister who leaped into her chest, and then she used her empty hand to gently caressed Kaori's head.
When she heard that Kaori was involved in a group disappearance, she was really worried that she felt lost. Naturally, when she was notified that Kaori had gone home, she immediately went to meet her directly. And so, different from the other distant relatives, she had already met with Kaori several times since Kaori's return.
Even so, the society was still in commotion in regard with the topic of the returnees, the topic could even be seen enough in the television, so as expected it was something joyful to be able to see Kaori's energetic face directly like this.
Having the sharp words of his niece directed at him, Tomoichi hung his head down even lower. Kaoruko was dragging such Tomoichi while entering together with Kaori and Sakura into the house where the grandparents and uncle were living.
The sun had went down. On the coast street where the veil of night was beginning to fall, Kaori and Sakura were walking close to each other like true sisters.
「The live show was amazingly lively isn't it? I don't really go much to that kind of event, so I was really excited.」
「Is that so? Then that's good. There were only local bands, so I wondered if it was strange for you.」
Kaori who received a passionate welcoming at Sakura's home had passed a relaxed time there while talking to each other about their families' recent state for a while. And then when it was evening, she was told that there was a live event of the local bands at the coast venue starting in that time, so she was taken along by Sakura to attend at the live to kill time.
Sakura responded to her cheerfully smiling younger sister that she was glad if Kaori was able to enjoy the show, however, Sakura's expression was twitching a bit. The cause of that was one person. Sakura glanced across her shoulder to behind them.
「Uu, Kaoriii. My angeeel. Can you make eye contact with Otou-san soon? Otou-san is going to die here from the loneliness.」
Yes, it was Tomoichi. For two women to go to live show by themselves, they didn't know what could happen to them. Giving that argument, Tomoichi went along with Kaori and Sakura, but the attitude of Kaori that treated him like he didn't exist caused Tomoichi to make a contorted face that was about to cry. Furthermore, Kaori didn't change her attitude at all even after looking at her father acting like that, instead she was still smiling cheerfully, looking at such Kaori, honestly speaking it was a bit scary.
The cold war between the father and daughter was definitely inflicting damage to Sakura's stomach.
By the way, the reason Kaori was taking such attitude wasn't only because of the quarrel at the car and also Tomoichi's accompaniment to the live show. Actually, when the families were talking at Sakura's house, a topic about Hajime came up, and urged by Sakura, Kaori made a call but......anyway what could be said was that Tomoichi bombed that phone call once more.
「......Hey, Kaori. How about you forgive Oji-san soon? Oji-san, he look like he is seriously going to cry there. Honestly, having an uncle with face about to cry following behind you on the street at night, it's normally scary.」
「Fufu, sheesh Sakura-oneechan. What are you saying? No matter where you see, there isn't anyone like that here you know?」
「Kaoriii! Otou-san is right here! Now, look here, please!」(TN: The 'please' is said in English.)
「See? There is no one right?」
Sakura's stomach received further damage. For Sakura, if her cute little sister made a boyfriend, then she also wouldn't be so accepting of that boyfriend. Therefore, it wasn't like she couldn't understand Tomoichi's feeling. But, in reverse, to have a parent saying this and that about the person that she liked was......as a girl in the same position of being a daughter, she was also able to understand Kaori's feeling. She was exactly being stuck between a rock and a hard place.
'Geez, anything is fine, so won't something happen that will end this father-daughter fight that has become quite troublesome', when Sakura was running from reality by thinking that......
「Eehh? You girls there, you two were at the live show just now right? What a coincidence! Want to talk a bit?」
It came. Inside her heart Sakura held her head thinking「What kind of timing this is」. Ahead of the gaze of such Sakura, there was a group of youngster with really flashy atmosphere as though they were someone that really like messing around. Judging from their appearances, there were about ten people. Sakura grandly made retorts, like why were they calling to two girls when there were about ten people in their group, or whether they even saw the man who seemed to be the father behind the two of them. Of course those were done inside her heart.
「My bad, but we have plan after this.」
「Plan? It's plan to go play right? Then, let's go together yeah. The more the merrier.」
Sakura politely refused, but the seducer group was grinning while surrounding Sakura and Kaori. No matter how they looked at this, it didn't seem that they weren't planning to let the two of them to merely go home. Because Sakura and also Kaori were beautiful woman and girl that really couldn't be found that often in this area, these men too wouldn't give up that easily.
But, naturally, seeing his beloved daughter and cute nephew getting hit on, there was no way Tomoichi could just stay quiet,
「You all. My daughter just say that she don't want to go with you. Now, open the way. We all just enjoy a nice live show. Let's both of our group avoid any troublesome matter.」
「Aa, what is it old man? Rather, your daughter? Eeh? By any chance, you are coming along with your daughter? Uwaa, that's seriously disgusting.」
「Hey old man, being overprotective is no good. Is this what is called as over-demanding parent? Have some self-awareness. Seriously, how uncool.」
「Rather, the one harassing these two here is you old man. Seriously, realize that. Come on, you two too, let's leave this stalker father and go play with us yeah?」
The men who were trying to pick up girls guffawed loudly from the words of Tomoichi who came out to the front while verbally abusing Tomoichi. Hearing their words, Tomoichi didn't even look particularly angry, far from that he didn't even show any fear being surrounded by more than ten people, he firmly said something more to stop the men from picking up girls more than this but......
Perhaps feeling that Tomoichi who was blocking their way as irritating, one of the men passed beside Tomoichi and stretched his hand toward Kaori.
「Can you not touch my daughter?」
「-, you are really noisy huh.」
Tomoichi suddenly gripped the man's hand, his almond eyes quietly narrowed and he gave words of restrain. Tomoichi wasn't particularly strong in a brawl. In his occupation he was a first class architecture, there was no chance for his physical strength to be questioned in such occupation. Even so, as an adult man who had piled up experience, furthermore as a father who was witnessing someone trying to lay their hand on his daughter, the light of his eyes contained a considerable pressure.
Therefore, the man was reflexively overpowered mentally, however, it seemed the man felt shame from that fact and his face immediately turned red indignantly. The man shook off the hand of Tomoichi that was grasping his hand, at the same time he hit Tomoichi.
Tomoichi let out a muffled voice and something red oozed from the corner of his lips.
The man driven by his indignation swung his arm further, while the other men also stepped forward to further hurt Tomoichi who was a hindrance for them. Sakura was raising her voice to stop them while her fingers were gliding on her smartphone to contact police, it was at that moment,
「What are you all doing I wonder? I wonder?」
A dread rushed. Through all the people in that place.
And then they noticed. Before they realized, Kaori who was already at Tomoichi's side had stopped with one hand the fist of the man that was swinging down.
A chill that was impossible to understand lathered on their skin bumpily, and the strange situation of a girl smilingly stopping the serious punch of an older man with just one hand, it caused everyone to stiffen, in the middle of that Kaori further let out words with flat tone that was the opposite of her smiling face.
「I'm asking you here, just what are you doing to my Otou-san I wonder?」
「Wha, what the hell, are you. Aa!? The father of you bitch was screwing around, so I was only giving him a lesson!」
The intimidating air that Kaori emitted caused the man whose fist was stopped to get into frenzy while ranting. And then, the man's other hand tried to strike in order to ’’give a lesson’’ to Kaori.
「Otou-san was screwing around? I guess so. Indeed, he is a troubling Otou-san who is always screwing around. He is overprotective, treating me like I'm still a small child, he immediately sulk if he is not paid attention to, and he keep badmouthing Hajime-kun.」
「hrk, wha, what the hell-. This stupid strength-」
Kaori was talking with small voice in murmur, leaving the dumbfounded surrounding into a lurch.
While still gripping at the two wrists of a man with a build far larger than herself.
From a glance it was clear that the man was trying to pull away his hands with all his strength, but the hand holding at him didn't even twitch as though he was being shackled with iron to a wall. Kaori's words reached toward such man who was half falling into panic.
「But you see, Otou-san is kind you know? He always think of me, no matter how busy he is with his work he always try to make time to speak with me, he always protected me even though he is not strong in a brawl, when I worked hard he praised me a lot, and when I make mistake he scold me a lot.」
Kaori lifted her face. However, that gaze wasn't directed at the man in front of her eyes. What she was looking at was Tomoichi at the side.
「......Otou-san, I'm sorry. I should have stopped it before you got hit. I recalled many things that I was late to move. Thank you, for trying to protect me.」
Tomoichi only called Kaori's name looking at her wry smile. He could do nothing else but that. The reason was, because his daughter's figure was looking really grown-up for some reason. It was as though, she was letting go of his hand, where she had already left the nest since a long time ago. Even though they were in the middle of a situation like this, the loneliness that flooded his chest clogged up all his words.
Kaori moved his gaze from such Tomoichi toward the men surrounding them, and then she let out her words along with an icy gaze.
「My father is the greatest father in the world. Don't you dare, humans at the level of you all make fun of him!」
「You bitch, let go of me alre――bugeh!?」
A kick that pointed to the sky was launched immediately after the angry yell. That kick impacted the jaw of the man whose both hands were gripped, and like that that man was blow away like a joke in parabolic arc.
The air returned to dead silence.
「If you all disappear right now, then I'll overlook this.」
Kaori's words resounded dignifiedly. A dainty girl was sending a young man with good physique flying with one kick――normally, the group of men would surely sense the abnormality of the situation, however, the difference in number between both sides and the common sense that said there was no way ten men could lose against high school girl caused them to mistake their choice for the sake of their tiny pride.
The men were breathing roughly in agitation, their mouths hurled out unrestrained abusive language, and they adjusted their stance in preparation to attack.
「Yep, I guess it can only be like this. People like you all surprisingly all has the same pattern.」
Saying that, Kaori lightly waved both her hands. Immediately, *kyakin!* a satisfying sound resounded and two metallic poles appeared in both her hands. Those were extendable batons.
Kaori was wearing a short sleeve clothes, which made anyone wanted to retort just where did she hid those batons, but those who knew, knew. That it was great that what came out were only extendable batons weren't it. Inside the ring that was attached with a crimson jewel dangling on Kaori's neck, there was even brutal large swords that could easily split even a great rock into two, those swords were exactly Kaori's specialized weapon.
In the end, two sword style using the extendable batons (Adamantium made-Lightning Clad enchantment) flashed in the coast street at night, it became a fierce society study for the young men. Along with a trauma that wouldn't disappear.
「Oji-san. It's great isn't it. Kaori get angry like this for Oji-san's sake. See, she is just like Oba-san. Please look, at this goosebumps. It's also like this when Oba-san is angry.」(TN: Oba-san=aunt)
「......Yo, you are right. Also, is, is it just my feeling? It feels like I can see ’’something’’ on Kaori's back just like Kaoruko though.」
The last man ate a fierce blow at his butt that would make even Thai kick looked like a mere child's play, the man screamed「Aaa―――!!」while flying on air. Sakura and Tomoichi who were looking at that scene with a distant look raised a dry laugh.
After that, Kaori tampered with the memory of the seducers with her own soul magic before she returned toward Tomoichi and Sakura with a really nice smile. It went without saying how Tomoichi and Sakura shivered altogether.
After that, seeing Kaori getting all fidgety looking like she wanted to talk with Tomoichi, Sakura who read the mood went back home first. Currently, Tomoichi and Kaori were walking silently with just the two of them on the path home.
「Otou-san, it doesn't hurt anymore?」
「Yeah, it's fine already Kaori. ......Magic is really amazing huh. You have shown it to me many times so it feels too late saying this but, even now it still makes me feel admiration witnessing it.」
The wound on his lips had been healed due to Kaori's healing magic. Tomoichi said his thanks at Kaori with an admiration just like he said. Feeling relieved hearing that, Kaori's expression softened. And then, her gaze began wandering as though she was searching for words.
Seeing that state of his daughter, Tomoichi half-guessed just what she wanted to speak about and sighed inside his heart, then he urged on Kaori to speak.
「Kaori, if there is something you want to say then you can just say it as it is within your mind. After all I'm the best father in the world. No matter what is it, I'll listen to what you say.」
Kaori chuckled at the way her father spoke and she opened her mouth.
「Say, I noticed this just now but......Hajime-kun, he resembled Otou-san isn't he-, that's what I think.」
「......Can you pause there, Kaori. Even Otou-san has this thing called limit to what I can and cannot accept you know? I'm similar with that harem man that is like a walking and talking haughty arrogance? I wonder, can Otou-san go out for a little bit of journey? It's okay, I think after finding myself back for about a year, Otou-san will be able to stand back again.」
「Ahaha, that's not what I meant. What I mean is not the current Hajime-kun, but the previous Hajime-kun.」
Kaori nodded toward Tomoichi who showed a questioning face. And then, she narrowed her eyes in nostalgia and began to talk.
「Yes, previously. He couldn't fight or anything at all, but when he thought that it was necessary then he would step out without hesitation, that kind of weak but strong person. Yep, surely, that was why I became curious about Hajime-kun. Because, if I can be with a person that is similar with Otou-san, then I will be happy, I know that from looking at Kaa-san.」
「Kaori....... Right now, Otou-san's feeling is really complicated. I'm happy but, or perhaps not happy....... However, that's really hard to believe huh. That him, and the him of the past that Kaori talked about, I really cannot connect the two of them......」
「Isn't that right. I too, when I reunited with Hajime-kun I was really shaken then. That was how much he changed. It was really terrible for him, to the degree that it was absolutely necessary for him to change. But, even so, deep inside he didn't change. That's why, there are people that love Hajime-kun that much. A person who is merely insincere and like woman, it would be strange if that kind of person is surrounded by that many people isn't it?」
「......Perhaps it's just as you say. But, even so, as expected as a father it's hard for me to consent. No matter who, if it is a father who has a daughter, then he will surely want to entrust his daughter to a person who will treasure her the most and only her.」
Tomoichi scratched his head looking troubled. Kaori took Tomoichi's arm and then hugged him happily.
「Thank you, Otou-san. But, I have confidence. Indeed, it's not just me alone that is with him, and I might not be the number one, even so I'm confident that I can have happiness that won't lose to anyone. Even though there are many people that are walking together with him, even so I can puff up my chest and say I am cherished. Because, the person who had crawled up from the bottom of the abyss just with the thinking that he wanted to go home to his important family, and defeated even god just because he wanted to take back his important person, such person is the one who gave his promise to me you know?」
Saying that, Kaori showed Tomoichi the ring that was dangling from her neck. Different from treasure warehouse, it was just a ring, but it was the eternal ring that was filled with the oath of her loved one.
Seeing that ring, Tomoichi's expression turned extremely bitter.
「Otou-san. Hajime-kun, he is a person that will treasure every aspect of his important people, even the treasured people of that treasured people. That's why, he said that he won't give up no matter how much Otou-san hate him. He told me that he will treasure Otou-san and Okaa-san too.」
「That's why, I understand that this is not normal, that this is something outlandish, but, it's fine even if it will take time, but I want Otou-san to treasure Hajime-kun too. I want Otou-san, to treasure my treasured person too.」
Kaori's words rode the flowing night wind that carried the aroma of salt and vanished. Tomoichi's expression was still bitter without any reply. If anyone looked at his eyes, they would be able to see a horrible discord whirling inside.
The long silent was continuing. Only the sounds of footsteps and sea waves were resounding in the ears of the two.
It was unknown how much time had passed, before long Tomoichi deeply, and grandly sighed. Toward Kaori who was staring at Tomoichi anxiously, his shoulders dropped while one of his hands held out to Kaori.
「Kaori. Can you contact that guy......Hajime-kun for me?」
「Otou-san......yes, wait a little bit.」
Kaori took her smartphone and called Hajime with a few rings. Hajime who answered the phone was told by Kaori that Tomoichi wanted to talk. Hajime consented readily without sounding particularly worked up. Hajime's attitude that looked composed caused Tomoichi's face to turn bitter once more. Kaori handed over the smartphone while smiling wryly at that expression of his father.
『It has been a long time.』(TN: Hajime used extremely polite language here.)
「Hmph! We just met around two months ago. Saying it has been a long time from that......it appears that within you, the matter of me is just like a mere stone at the roadside huh.」
『No, that's unthinkable. The family of Kaori is as important as a jewel for me.』
「Hmph! As always, it's only your mouth that keep spouting out pretty words isn't it? Is that how you trick my daughter?」
『Never. If pushed to say, then I think it is me the one who got caught.』
「Hmph!! Is this that? 『Not really, I am not really feeling anything here, but Kaori said that she want this no matter what sooo, I just give it a try』That's what you think huh! Just what in the world you are――」
When Tomoichi heard Hajime's voice, his hostility flooded out like a conditioned reflex. At the same time, when he heard「Otou-san?」from his daughter, he also let out words of apology from conditioned reflex. He wasn't a mere father. He was a trained father.
While keenly feeling the gaze of Hannya-san from the side, Tomoichi cleared his throat while trickling cold sweat and opened his mouth once more.
「Ahem-. That, see, today, I called because......well, I too have various things in my mind. A father that has a daughter, no matter what he cannot be gentle toward the man who is the partner of said daughter.」
『I understand. After all, I too have a daughter that makes me resolve to be a father. If I am in your position, and my daughter bring along a man like me, then there is no doubt that I will break all the bones in his body and buried him inside concrete, and in the end I will throw him in the middle of Pacific Ocean.』
「Eh? Ah, yeah, tha, that's it. I, I too, is thinking of doing at least that much, yup, to such man you know?」
『Yes. That's why, I understand how your blood must be seething. So much, that you must be thinking that you want to drop a nuclear bomb right now at me even if it will drag the surrounding to it, that you want to dye everything in dark red isn't that right?』
「.....................Yo, you really got it huh!」
This time Tomoichi was trickling cold sweat from a different meaning. Hajime's hostility was too extreme that far surpassed him. Furthermore, just by imagining the imaginary loved one of that daughter who might appear in the future, Japan might fall into a pinch in the future. Tomoichi was thinking, 「Ee? Isn't the scale of hostility is a bit too different from mine?」, which caused him to succumb to a complicated sense of defeat.
「Ahem-. It feels like, I somehow come to understand really well how you are thinking, so let's put this matter aside for a bit. More than that, I want to confirm something to you.」
「You don't have any intention to separate with Kaori, conversely you also don't have any intention to separate with the other girls. You are planning to remain married with them all for life, and you don't have the intention to bend that will. Isn't that right?」
『It's just as you say. I understand how such thing is outlandish, how it goes against ethics, and how there are people like you who think unpleasantly of such thing. But even knowing that, let me say it once more. Everyone, they all are my wives. That will of mine won't bend. No matter what can possibly happen from here on, I won't yield of that will at all. My deepest apologize but, I will stick to this will for my whole life until you can possibly accept it.』
「tsk, you are brazenly acting defiant huh.」
『I will do everything in my power, so that someday, you can possibly accept this as a sincerity and determination of my own way.』(TN: The way Hajime used you to call Tomoichi here is also done in the politest way.)
Tomoichi's hand that was holding the smartphone tightened. His fury was welling up hearing that nonsensical things being spoken so brazenly. However, he saw the eyes of his daughter that was staring fixedly at him from the side, and then Tomoichi sighed once more to let out the heavy thing inside his chest.
「I really want to punch you flying right now you know? The ideal future for me is that I won't see your face anymore with my daughter completely forgetting you once and for all.」
『I guess so. The troubling thing is, I understand your feeling painfully well. I also understand how it must be irritating for you that I am acting sympathetic like this. This is really a highly difficult problem, even more than adventuring in another world that was filled with death and absurdity.』
「I don't know about the absurdity of another world, but there is not even a single doubt in me that this is the greatest trial that I have ever faced in my whole life. Aah, really, just why my daughter encountered you in the past.」
『Surely, that's because there is no one who can stand superior to this mean world.』
「No doubt about that. Good grief, this world really make me go through something uncalled for. ......However, what is really, reall~y unfortunate is....................................my daughter, is happy with this, with an expression so lovely that I have never seen before.」
Tomoichi stood still there. His parent's house had come into view. But, he couldn't muster any will to enter the house like this. First, there was something that he had to ask, for the sake of the words and wish of his daughter that he had heard in this night, and above that, for the sake of producing a conclusion inside himself.
「Let me ask this to you, the shitty bastard who is trying to have your own way for a screwy future. Can you vow, that you will able to make, my daughter, my Kaori, to keep having that kind of expression forever? Can you vow, that she will be able to throw out her chest, and declare without hesitation that she is happy, can you make her continue to be that kind of girl forever?」
At the other side of the phone, Tomichi felt that the atmosphere suddenly changed. It was something that made Tomoichi felt Hajime's serious feeling beyond any doubt before even hearing his next words......
『If it's those vow, I have vowed it since a long time ago. This life, is for that sake. It will never change, no matter what.』
Standing still in place, Tomoichi looked up to the sky. While feeling the gaze of his daughter that was looking up at him, he repressed the excessive urge to yell「BASTAAARDD――――!!」inside him. And then, breaking the silence, he formed the words, while feeling a strange sense of defeat, he summoned up all his strength to the limit, in order to grant the earnest wish of his daughter.
「......Next time, come to my home. You can have dinner there.」
『......Thank you very much. I will surely visit to trouble your hospitality.』
An impact run through Tomoichi's arm. When he looked there, Kaori was hugging Tomoichi's arm with a full smile. With a small voice,「Otou-san, thank you. I love you!」she sent him the greatest words for a father. His feeling that almost made him scattered bloody vomit from working up the sentence just now, and also his murky feeling, all those feelings were somewhat cleared up if he could receive such words.
At the same time, when he thought that he received those words due to Haijme's existence, as expected he couldn't help but felt a sense of defeat, so
「Do, don't you misunderstand! It's not like I recognize you or anything! Until the end, I'm just thinking of keeping an eye at you for a bit, that's all there is to it, don't you dare make Kaori sad even for a bit! If you dare do that, then it will be that, that! It will be concrete and Pacific Ocean and Nuclear I tell you!」
『Haha, that's really terrifying. I will engrave those words deep in my heart.』
Tomoichi's speech that was just like a tsundere caused Hajime and also Kaori to leak out chuckles reflexively.
Like that, it was at that timing when the talk almost end with a good feeling,
『Goshujin-samaaa~. Thy beloved servant has returned~. For the reward, please, chastise mine butt a lot toniiight!』
From the other side of the phone, some kind of voice that was filled with a mix of excitement and charm resounded. The moment that voice became audible, the atmosphere of Hajime changing into astonishment could be felt transmitted from the phone receiver.
『Tio, you, how did you come back!? Even though as the punishment of making merry in front of my Jii-chan and others before this I had wrapped you in bamboo mat and tied you up to a missile before launching it......』(TN: Jii-chan=grandfather)
『Of course, it's obviously by crawling back without untangling Goshujin-sama's love(rope)! The kindness of not exploding the missile......if I didn't answer that kindness, how could I be Goshujin-sama's servant!』
『That's a lie right......I sent you flying until the other side of the mountain, you shouldn't be able to come back without crossing through the downtown......』
『Yes! When the people saw this crawling figure that art like caterpillar, cheers(screams) were raised everywhere. As expected even I felt shy, furthermore the authorities came out, so I traveled with higher speed, everyone was already loudly cheering(pandemonium) then.』
『You are making a new urban legend at the city where my Jii-chan is living......』
『Now, grant the prize to me who hath worked hard in coming back. Specifically, a reward using that black, hard, and large thing, to chastise mine butt! Recently, Goshujin-sama didn't do it much, so it feels lonely!』
『You stupid idiot! What kind of thing you are running your mouth about with that loud voice!』
Of course, that perverted exchanges that were done with loud voice were properly transmitted through the phone, to the father and daughter with cleared feelings.
「......Oi, perverted bastard.」
『! ......This is a misunderstanding desu. Give me a chance for explaining――』
「You think I'll give you a chance? You think I'll let you? Fufu, isn't it strange? Aa, you are really, a strange man. Fufufufu.」
An eerie chuckle came out from Tomoichi. At his side, Kaori was holding her head while murmuring「Tio you idiooot」. And then, she tried to cover for Hajime and tried to talk to Tomoichi, but before she could do that, Tomoichi exploded.
「I take back my words-. You shitty bastaaaaarrrdd-! I absolute won't hand over my daughter to a perverted bastard like you! I prohibit you to approach her until the end of the world-! Someone like you, just explode with nuclear at Pacific Oceaaaannnnnnnnnn――――!!!」
Hajime tried to make excuse, but before he could do that, Tomoichi swung up his hand holding the smartphone, and then he threw the phone to the ground. A grievous scream「My smartphone――――!!」could be heard from the side, but such voice didn't reach Tomoichi who had transformed into a warrior that was a father protecting his daughter.
Far from that, as though the smartphone was a nemesis that couldn't be allowed to live under the same sky, or possibly so that the hateful scum wouldn't be able to call from the other side of the phone anymore, he stepped on the smartphone and grinded it many times.
Naturally, Kaori's smartphone was invited into heaven.
「O, Otou-san! What are you doing!」
「I am severing ties with that maggot-, with all my strength here! Kaori, don't meet with that perverted bastard, until the end of the world! This is a promise with Otou-san!」
Indeed, if there was a father who would still entrust the daughter after hearing that kind of dialogue from the other side of the phone, then it would be better to not waste time to take such father to a hospital. To a hospital for brain.
However, from the point of view of Kaori who had thoroughly witnessed Hajime's unique relationship with Tio at the other world where she had already accepted it as ordinary happening, although she could understand her father's feeling perfectly, but witnessing her smartphone got trampled and hearing the person she loved getting called as maggot caused her to want to object against her better judgment......
Tomoichi sensed his daughter's atmosphere that obviously didn't seem to obey him even after hearing that kind of exchanges in the phone, and on top of that even after he told her that she must not meet that man anymore. Tomoichi was trembling all over while declaring with all his strength at the residential area at night.
「Otou-san! Is abso~~~~~-lutely! Not appro―――――――ving-!!!」
「Ah, wait, Otou-san! Where are you going――――!!」
Tomoichi suddenly started to run. ......To the direction that was the opposite from the house. And then, in the blink of eye he disappeared toward the night residential area.
If he went back to the house, then he would be talked by his daughter about that hateful shitty bastard again. That was why, he wouldn't go home anymore. Until Kaori understand, Otou-san will run away from home! It was such thing.
The shoulders of Kaori who somehow guessed his father's intention slumped down, while
「Normally, the one who run away from home because they are not being understood, should be the daughter isn't it.」
After whispering that, Kaori then chased after Tomoichi.
The father who absolutely didn't want to approve the person that his daughter loved, and the daughter who wanted his father to approve no matter what, both of them began to race at night.
After that, whether Hajime could be accepted or not by Tomoichi......
Anyway, let's just say that Hajime worked even harder than even godslaying for that.