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There is a type of people that becomes annoying when they’re too happy.
In the morning on a peaceful Sunday…
I awoke to the noisy chirping of birds and my phone ringing. I answered the morning call from the old man.
“Sup, Yato! Did you sleep well yesterday? You’re uncle Ijida is giving you morning call–”
“I’m hanging up.” Feeling a bit displeased to hear his voice first thing in the morning, I tried to cut off the conversation.
“AAH! Wait! Wait! It’s a joke!! I need to ask you a favor, don’t hang up!”
Because he was so flustered, the old man stopped me from hanging up.
Seriously, why should I wake up to this old man’s voice in the morning on a Sunday?
“So? What’s this favor?”
I moved the phone back to my ear to hear him out while letting out a sigh.
After confirming that I was listening to him, he seemed to become relieved and started talking. “Well you see, I feel sorry for you but…… you’re going out with me on a date.”
I wondered what I was doing right now…
“Ooh!! This is amazing! It’s been quite awhile since I’ve been to an amusement park, it changed a lot!!”
Next to me was an old man wearing casual clothes and getting too excited in front of the gate, as he looked at all of the attractions surrounding him.
I wondered why I was in an amusement park with that guy…
When he told me to go out on a date with him the first time, I was about to throw away my phone by reflex.
Who would be happy to go out on a date with an old man?
Again he panicked before he explained the whole situation to me.
Looks like the amusement park was where an important deal was going to take place.
That was why he asked for my help—in order to arrest the dealers at the actual spot.
I thought about complaining about this manga-like development, but this was the reality now.
Rather, he could’ve just asked me directly.
I had been about to break my phone due to the method of his approach.
“But why are we the only ones responsible for such a dangerous mission?”
I didn’t see anyone who could be part of the police around.
It was just me and the old man.
“That’s because only you and I know this information.”
I couldn’t stop myself from letting out a confused sound after hearing his obvious answer.
What did you just say?
“Just me and you? On this dangerous mission?”
“I’m actually in the middle of investigating the whereabouts of a wanted criminal and I coincidently obtained this information while I was following his moves.”
The old man tapped my shoulder with his hand.
“I shouldn’t involve my co-workers in something this dangerous, don’t you think?” Putting his hand on my shoulder, he tried to sound cool.
Somehow, I felt kinda pissed off when he did that.
He’s worried about his co-workers yet involved me.
With a cold gaze, I asked the old man about his true intentions. “And what’s your true motive?”
“It’s troublesome to ask them for cooperation.” He immediately answered.
Feeling impressed by his laziness as a detective, I remained to gaze at him with cold eyes.
Was this guy really a detective?
Sensing my disappointment, the old man flustered and tried to explain. “C’mon it’s fine!! I’ve been following that criminal for a long time and I’m finally close to catching him! Adding that you’re with me, I don’t need to go ask anybody for their help!”
Changing his flustered expression into that of confidence, he continued. “The same goes for you. You accepted my request just because of food, didn’t you?”
I went quiet after hearing what he said.
There was no way I’d go with an old man on a date for free.
I had heard that there was a unique pancake that was sold in the amusement park.
It had been broadcast on TV countless times and it was considered as a waste to be sold only in an amusement park.
With the mutual agreement that he would treat me to that pancake as a reward, I accepted his request for today.
I know, I’m pretty pathetic to be baited by food two times in row…
“It can’t be helped, I can’t win against delicious stuff.”
“You gotta work hard for that delicious stuff then, partner!”
Placing his hand on my shoulder, the old man started pleasantly laughing.
Seriously, he was way too excited.
Letting out a light sigh, I walked with the old man to the target area.
“Is it really in this place?”
“Yeah, according to the information I got.”
Currently, the old man and I were standing before the most standard attraction in an amusement park: the haunted house.
He said that the deal would take place inside.
I was getting more and more worried about the credibility of his source of information.
“Alright, let’s get inside first.”
We stood in the line and waited for our turn to go in.
After entering the haunted house, we saw that its interior was gloomy and it was barely illuminated by the lights in the path sides.
“There should be a secret path somewhere that only the staff knows of. Let’s find it and ambush them.” The old man spoke with a grim tone. If I couldn’t see his face, I would definitely think he was serious.
“I get, but… why are clinging to my back?”
His attitude ruined the impression his voice left.
From the moment we entered the haunted house, he had been tightly grabbing my shoulders while faintly trembling.
“Don’t mind me, I’m just doing it for no reason.”
“Then can you stop clenching my shoulders until you break them?”
“Ah, I thought that you might be feeling stiff. I’m just massaging them.”
Apparently, he was not intending to let my shoulders off.
There was no way the massage excuse would work in such a situation.
“Hey, don’t tell me, are you scared?”
“W-What?! O-Of course not!” He was clearly disturbed by my question, yet he answered me with a trembling voice. He was definitely scared.
“I see. If you’re not scared then walk in front of me. I don’t know the way to the designated place.”
I moved the old man before me and teased him.
Realizing how impossible it was for him to walk alone, he bravely admitted, “Sorry, I’m scared, please walk first.”
I was taken aback by his confession.
“You should’ve told me that first.”
“I mean, it would feel weird if a middle aged man like me was to tell you that he’s scared of ghosts, right?”
“You’re not wrong.”
“You’re supposed to say no!”
Well, I would allow it if a cute girl was to admit that she was scared in these situations, but that wouldn’t be the case if it was an old man, I would just feel disgusted.
Only girls are allowed to be scared in these places.
“That’s why I didn’t want to go with my co-workers…”
The old man was grumbling something in my back. So that was the main reason for bringing me.
Well, I kinda understand why he didn’t want to show this side of him to an acquaintance.
Walking behind my back while shivering, a zombie came out suddenly and tried to scare us.
Startled by the zombie who came out of the blue, the old man used me as a shield and screamed.
Even the zombie seemed slightly surprised by his shout. If it had been Kamaishi who let out the shout instead, I would definitely have thought it was cute.
Hearing the loud shouts of the old man behind me, I started somehow thought about Kamaishi.
For some reason, despite screaming, he didn’t let go of my shoulders and clenched them with even more strength.
Hey, my shoulders are cracking!
It didn’t hurt though.
Using me as a shield until we left the zombie behind, I nonchalantly asked the old man, “Come to think of it, why do you hate scary stuff that much?”
He stayed quiet for few seconds after hearing me before he slowly started speaking. “I participated alone in a test of courage when I was kid and saw it with my own eyes.”
“That’s obvious! A ghost!”
With a trembling voice, the old man continued.
“While I was walking in a graveyard, I saw a white hand appearing from nowhere and beckoning me. I saw the hand doing that gesture, so I approached it since I didn’t believe in ghosts at that time.”
Recalling his past memories, he started shivering even more than he had been earlier.
“When I walked close enough, the white hand caught my leg and dragged me down. It was at that moment when I realized the how severe the situation had become. I used the other leg to kick the white hand and escaped with all my might. When I stopped running, I couldn’t see the white hand anymore.”
Recalling his bitter memory, he resumed.
“From that day onward, I became scared of everything related to ghosts.”
He then smiled at me and said, “You see, it’s funny, isn’t it? It’s funny how pathetic I am.”
Despite him saying that, I didn’t laugh.
That’s because there wasn’t anything funny in his story. What’s up with that realistic experience?
I think I shouldn’t have asked him casually like that.
Who thought that he had gone through such a terrifying experience.
“…Um, sorry for saying it’s weird for you to be scared earlier…”
“That’s fine, don’t worry about it.”
Noticing that things may get a bit heavy, I decided to change the conversation.
“Come to think of it, did you check the time when the dealing will take place? I forgot to ask about the exact time.”
The old man halted his steps at my question.
I stopped walking too and looked at his eyes.
“What time is it now?”
I silently showed my watch to the old man.
Gazing at it for a moment, his face gradually turned pale.
Come on now, don’t tell me…
“This is bad, it already started.”
Realizing that the deal had already started, he let go of my shoulder and ran ahead.
I tried calling him to stop running.
If you walk ahead if me you…
However, before I even called him, he bumped into something and drew back.
Making a few steps back, he raised his head to see what had happened then stiffened up.
A blood-dripping ghost was standing in front of him and grabbing his shoulder.
Just as I was thinking that he had stopped moving for good, the old man started shivering again and eventually let out a loud shout. “Gyaaaaaaaa!!!”
Pushing off the ghost catching him, he ran forward as his loud voice resounded in the haunted house.
Aah, it wasn’t like I didn’t warn him.
I followed behind him until he bumped against something else and fainted.
“Are okay, old man?”
“That’s hurts… I didn’t expect someone to show up in a place like that.” Holding his head while complaining, he raised it to talk with the person he had bumped against. Once he saw the person’s face, he exclaimed. “It’s him!”
“The criminal I’m looking for!”
Becoming excited he handcuffed the person who had collapsed in front of us.
So the person he coincidently bumped against happened to be the criminal he was looking for. How lucky.
If the criminal was here, then where could the other party be? I looked around the place and noticed someone secretly peeking at us.
He ran away at the moment our eyes met, but of course there was no way I’d let him go. I knocked him out with a neck blow.
Aight, criminal arrested.
I dragged the other criminal near the old man, where I found him screaming in joy.
Interrupting his joy, I asked him for confirmation, “Don’t forget about the pancake.”
Seeming to be in a good mood, he tried to back out of his promise as he smiled at me.
“Hey, c’mon now. You’re still asking me to pay even though you didn’t do anything? That’s pretty selfish of you, huh?”
Apparently not noticing the guy who was knocked out next to me, he kept on speaking as if he was looking down on me. I felt kinda pissed because of the way he said it.
“I see. Okay then, I will do my job correctly now.”
I carried the two criminals as I continued, “I will teleport back to your car and put these two inside. Don’t worry, I will bind them so they don’t cause any more trouble. You just need to get out of this haunted house and go to the pancake restaurant, alone.”
I made sure he heard my last word, and the old man finally understood my intentions and turned pale.
The joy he felt from arresting the criminals made him forget that he was inside a haunted house.
We didn’t even walk half the way in and there was still more stuff he could enjoy on his way out.
“W-Wait! I was just kidding. We’re partners, aren’t we? Let’s finish the work we started together, okay? Okay?!”
I smirked at the old man who was desperately trying to explain himself.
Lured by my smile, he smiled at me as well, then I said, while keeping the same expression, “Later!”
“W-Waa– please! Wait–”
Before he finished his words, I teleported back to the parking lot.
It was all because he got too carried away.
Next time he must pay better attention.
Laughing at him under my breath, I headed to the pancake restaurant, smirking.
There was no need to describe the empty expression of the old man when he arrived.
Are you gay?
Inside the haunted house.
“Hey, look at those two.”
“What kind of relationship do these two guys have?”
“The young guy has pretty fair looks, while the other one is middle aged man. Don’t tell me… they’re a gay couple?”
“Eh? With that difference in age?”
“He’s probably paying that young good-looking guy.”
“Seriously? Dating with compensation?!”
“I know right~”
“……hey old man, I really want to go back home now.”
“Shut up, even I want to go back…”
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.