Episode 115 – Tachibana Kanata → Shiina Kanata ⑤



Suddenly, I have a new family member.

I have been in a coma for about a week since then. It seems that I have always been malnourished, and it took me a long time to regain consciousness due to the enormous mental stress I have experienced over the past short period of time. I was aware that I had not been eating properly for the past several months, so I did not think it was particularly strange. Until about a year ago, my mother had kept a minimal amount of money at home and I had been working part-time to earn money, but even that had disappeared recently.

When she heard that I had woken up, she came to my hospital room, not my parents, friends, or homeroom teacher, but my aunt, whom I had not had much chance to talk to. When she saw me sitting up, she rushed over to me.

“I’m sorry, Kanata kun, I’m sorry…….”

She hugged me and said that. It might have been a touching embrace scene, but I didn’t really think anything of it. No, I’m sure I didn’t think anything of it. But whether she realized it or not, she never stopped hugging me.

A few days later, I heard that my mother had passed away.

Apparently, she had entered the train tracks by herself and was run over by an oncoming train. After the police investigated surveillance cameras and personal information, they found out that it was suicide. The security camera caught her entering the tracks on her own, without being threatened by anyone.

It seems that my mother had been paying a lot of money to host, and she was also carrying a large amount of debts. The total amount was about 6 million yen. She had apparently borrowed money through several consumer finance companies, and the amount, including interest, had ballooned to a large sum before she realized it.

But what did she think? She continued to pay tribute to the host even though she was burdened with debt. Was she that dependent on them, or did she want to forget her son and ex-husband? The truth is no longer known.

A few days after I heard about the incident, someone claiming to be a lawyer came to me through my aunt. In addition to the 6 million yen debt my mother had, she owed 1.5 million yen in damages for stopping the train when she committed suicide. In other words, a total of 7.5 million yen in debt would fall on me. This is what is called inheritance, and it seems that I will have to bear the negative side of the inheritance as well. Moreover, there is almost no positive inheritance.

“I recommend that you renounce your inheritance. You will have to go to the family court and go through a lot of formalities.”


“Are you listening, Tachibana kun?”

The lawyer was puzzled by my lack of reaction and gradually became irritated. My aunt, who couldn’t bear to see me like that, took care of all the procedures for me. I think I also signed the papers with my thin arm, but I don’t remember what kind of documents they were.

When my nutritional condition had improved, thanks in part to the hospital food and intravenous drips, I was informed by the doctor in charge of my case that it was time for me to leave the hospital. The doctor and the government officials were wondering what I would do now that my father was in prison and my mother had passed away, but I heard that my aunt said, [I will take him in].

So I moved into a room in my aunt’s new house (a small apartment). Luckily, she had an unused room, and I was allowed to live there.

However, my life was almost the same. I didn’t go to school and spent most of the day in a daze. My aunt cooked meals for me and we gradually began to talk, but that was about the extent of the change. I know she was paying for me and I was sorry for that, but I kept my mind closed for a long time.

“That’s right Kanata kun, why don’t you call me Mom?”

She suggested, as if she thought I was starving for a “mother”. I had given up thinking about everything, so I did as she asked. She had her own work to do and it must have been a nuisance for a man like me to move in with her. But she was sincere in her attitude toward me. So, even if it was confusing, I gradually came to think of her as a mother.

But in the end, I never opened my heart to her. If I made a mistake, I would tremble abnormally and apologize over and over again, and sometimes I couldn’t sleep for three whole days due to the stress of an unknown cause. Perhaps it was the result of having lived alone for so long.

One day, after a long time of living like this. I had entered the third year of middle school without realizing it, and my days were the same as ever.

Then my aunt…..came to me and told me something.

“I don’t know how to say this, but I’m getting married.”


“Well, are you going to be okay with the addition to our family?”


Apparently, my mother had a boyfriend. When I heard the story, it seems that the other person is a hard worker who lost his wife early with a child. After a few years of dating, he proposed to her. Yes, it may be a little complicated, but I think it makes for a great story.

“It looks like you’re going to have a sister who’s close to your age, Kanata kun.”


“Fufu, think of a proper greeting.”

She told the man who would become her husband about me in detail. Well, if you think about it, I’m in the position of a freeloader, and since such a man will become a family with his daughter, it’s no wonder he distrust me. However, after she told him everything, he seemed to be convinced and said he would accept me. Incidentally, he didn’t tell his daughter about me in detail, but just explained that I was her son. I don’t know about the person who will become my step sister.

[Hello, my name is Shiina Haruhiko. Nice to meet you, Kanata kun.]

[Ah, I’m Shiina Haruka. Nice to meet you.]

I greeted the other family member I had just met. My step father is a professor at a university and is a reasonably intelligent man with a calm atmosphere. And his daughter (step sister) bit her tongue at the greeting, perhaps because she was nervous. She was one year older than me and a freshman in high school.

“……Nice to meet you.”

I tried to keep it simple, and said so. My step father smiled and talked to me about various things, as if that was enough. My step sister, on the other hand, looked at me and seemed to be confused about everything. Well, I guess it can’t be helped that I probably look creepy to other people.

(……I’ll try to stay out of it as much as possible.)

Even if I get along with them, they will be unhappy. I thought so and didn’t try to get involved with anyone. After all the formalities were completed, my mother canceled the apartment we were living in and we moved into a new house together.


The house was nice enough that even I, who was emotionally drained, thought so. Apparently, my step father had been thinking about moving into a new house when he got married, and had been looking for a larger house for a while. Apparently, being a university professor is a very lucrative job, as he took out a loan and paid it without thinking.

“This is our new house. Haruka, Kanata kun. Your rooms are on the second floor, so go take a look.”

With that said, my step sister went upstairs excitedly. I followed her and looked around the rooms. It seemed that she had decided on the room assignment in advance, and she entered her own room without hesitation, her eyes shining.

(This is my room……)

Sorry mother, but the room was incomparably cleaner than before. It was already furnished with a bed and a desk, a room that was too good for me.


I felt guilty and wondered if I should be given such a thing. Yes, I’m a stranger to these people, and I have nothing to offer them. Even my aunt/mother are just relatives, not even related to me by blood. I was only told to call her that, and in fact, I never once thought of her as my mother. To top it all off, I’m a scumbag who doesn’t trust people and throws away a girl I have been friends with for over a year. The only thing that will come out of a friendship with such a person is a sense of discomfort and awkwardness.

There were times when I thought of disappearing somewhere by myself. But if I left on my own, it would cause trouble for my mother. At least until I graduated from middle school……

“Hey, hey !”


“Ah, I’m sorry I startled you.”

I was suddenly called out and my shoulders shook involuntarily. When I slowly turned around, there was a girl there who was looking away and glancing at me. Shiina Haruka…she’s going to be my step sister. I’ve never spoken to her directly before, but she gave me a bright impression unlike before. I’m sure she’s excited about her new home.

“Kanata kun, um, I’m looking forward to working with you from now on.”

My step sister, who seemed to want to greet me once again, even though I was still in a slump. I’m sure if I looked straight into her face, she’d hate my ugly self and wouldn’t be able to get over it.


So, I just returned her words in a whisper without making eye contact with her. My step sister seemed a little uneasy about my appearance, but she was a little hesitant, but even so, she showed me the attitude of making amends as much as possible because she was a person who would become a family member from now on. If that’s the case, it would be better for me to be as quiet as possible and not make any disturbance. It would be better for both of us. After a while of one-sided conversation, my step sister left the room.


I sat down on the bed in my room, which had become quiet, and lay down. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to sleep if I close my eyes. I haven’t had a decent night’s sleep since that day, but maybe I’ll be able to get some rest after all that moving around. Hopefully it stays like this……..

And so, I gently close my eyes in the darkened room surrounded by silence.

It has been several months since I moved into this house. I have been spending my days in my room and have not visited junior high school as usual. What I was doing in my room was making preparations for my independence.

My mother gave me a computer that she no longer uses, and I have been working on various things. I rented a server to manage my blog and earned money from advertisements on affiliate sites. I also took on video editing and application development projects, and actively did anything that would bring in even a small amount of money.

I spent my time facing the inorganic screen, sleeping with it, facing it, and sometimes just zoning out. I lived a quiet life with no particular emotion or voice, only the sound is the sound of typing.

–Tap tap tap.

However, in such a cold life, there were times when I could hear the only voice through the door.

[Kanata kun, you’re not going to eat dinner again today?]

It was my step sister. She took the initiative in taking care of the housework for me because my step father and mother were both working and were not at home. I haven’t seen her once since the day we first spoke. No, on the contrary, I haven’t talked to her even once.

But she still calls me every morning and evening.

[If you don’t eat properly, it’s bad for your health, you know?]

I never answer her voice. If I got involved with her even once, I would probably hurt her without even knowing it. This thought makes me hesitate to open that door.

However, this does not mean that I do not open the door because I go to the convenience store late at night when all the family members are asleep.

Then, within a few minutes, my step sister is gone. I heard the front door open just now, so she must have headed for the school. Ichinose High School……is a school run by the same chairman as my middle school. I’m not really thinking about it any more. I would rather go as far away as possible and never get involved again.

Such was my daily life, but something unusual was happening under this roof. I heard that my step sister had a fever and collapsed. Fortunately, my mother was at home, but for some reason she also went to work. Probably, my step sister had forced her to go to work, assuring her that she would be all right. My step father has not been home for a while.

(……Not my problem)

With that in mind, I tried to go back to sleep. But I couldn’t sleep, so I opened the door and went out of the room. Usually I don’t leave my room until nighttime, but this day I was somewhat on a whim and went outside the room. My step sister never leaves her room with a fever anyway, so there was nothing to get worked up about.


The living room at a bright time of day, the first time I had been here in a long time. Standing tall by the window, looking out at the scenery and basking in the sunlight for the first time in a while. Come to think of it, my body has become quite shabby because I haven’t exercised for a while. I look at my reflection in the glass.


I feel that my face looks a little different from before. Perhaps it is because I was malnourished while growing up and could not lead a regular life. And it’s not just my face. I can no longer see the strength and muscular power that I once had. The man reflected in the glass is a weak and miserable man.

“….Look stupid.”

Then I looked around the house again. I usually go out in the middle of the night, since I’m always sleeping at this time, so it was my first time wandering around during sunrise. Until now, the house had been shrouded in darkness, but when I looked around, I had a thought.

(Something is wrong)

At first glance, my house appears to be clean and tidy, but the smallest details are not cleaned at all. There’s a lot of dust on the back of the TV stand, and the cords are not arranged properly. In the kitchen, there were no grease stains at all, and it was apparent that the kitchen was only wiped with a minimal amount of water. The main cook in the house is my step sister. In other words, she probably doesn’t have much time for the details.

“…..Come to think of it, I wonder what was going on with my step sister.”

I remembered that my step sister was at home today, so I quietly stood in front of her room so that she wouldn’t notice me. I put my ear to the door and heard her shallow sleep, so I opened the door a little to check on her.


She looked a little distressed, but my step sister was sleeping normally.

“……I felt like an idiot.”

It was a little disconcerting to see her in such a weakened state, after she had been patiently calling out to me on a regular basis. I don’t know why she had a fever, but it must have been for some appalling reason. So why did she continue to run as fast as she could until she looked like this?


Even I can’t explain why she did what she did from there, and maybe there was no reason. My body was moving before I could think.

I went to a convenience store and bought a replacement fever sheet, sports drink, and other things I might need. Then I went home and replaced the sheet on her head without her noticing, and quietly covered her with a blanket.

Then I found a cleaning kit and cleaned every nook and cranny in the house. As expected, I did not touch anything in my step sister’s room since I had just entered there, but I removed all manner of dirt from most of the rooms, including my own. It had been a long time since I had done housework, but it seemed that even though I was in a different house, my body remembered how to do it, and I was done in a relatively short amount of time.

“Sigh….what am I doing.”

After finishing everything, I fell down on the table in the living room. My body was heavy after moving around for the first time in a long time. And my eyelids are getting heavier and heavier. It might be a long time since I had a pure sleepiness like this.


I fell asleep like a child tired of playing.

A few days later.

“Good morning, Kanata.”

I was closer to my step sister than ever before. I really don’t know why I did what I did. I had no intention of getting along with her. Moreover, she is becoming less and less reserved with each passing day. Recently, she went out of her way to say, [I’m home] in a voice loud enough to be heard upstairs.

One day, while I was spending my days like this, my step sister said to me.

[Why don’t you take the entrance exam for Ichinose High School, the school where I go to?]

I was tired beyond dismay. But my step sister, not to be outdone, developed her own theory and presented her own ideas. The content of her presentation was childish at every turn, but I found myself listening in wonder.

Curious, I decided to ask her about it.

“……High school.”


“Is it interesting?”

And my step sister answers my question with sarcastic content. She probably doesn’t think school is a good place either. But even so, there was something powerful in what she said.

(Do I want to go to school?)

If you want to question the answer to that question, no. There is no point in going to high school and there is nothing to be gained from it. Besides, there is a possibility that it will be a repetition of what happened before. However, if I were to find a special meaning in it…..


Revenge for everything that put me in this situation. Thinking of this, I felt a slight heat rise in my previously pitch-black heart. I’m sure this will end badly. But even so, I still wanted to…..

“……So you’re saying that you’re trying to enroll me to school even though you don’t know if it’s interesting or not?”

The change of first name is a sign of determination. The magic words to change from me, the ally of justice, to me, the avenger. It’s a leash to force me to act out a new persona.

“……It’s not me who chooses to do that. The choice is always on your own. Just like in a story or a novel, the protagonist of your life is always you. You’re the one who makes the choice to change something. So I can’t decide what’s out there.”

–Yes, that’s right. Then I’ll live my life for me and hunt down everything that hurts me. I’ll ruin other people’s lives, just like they ruined mine.

From there, I acted fast. First, I took a practice test to check my current level. I took it seriously and got a perfect score with a little time to spare. With this, I would be able to enter any high school in the world, let alone in the whole country.

And the next thing I completed was revenge at my middle school. Shinya apparently transferred to another school a short time after I stopped going to school. So I put Shinya on the back burner and targeted my former classmates. They were at a critical point in their lives when their career paths were on the line. It was the perfect time to take revenge.

It was fun to hunt someone down. First, I gathered information on who was going on to school and where. The school seemed to make a list of students who wanted to go on to higher education in advance, as there were many recommendations. So I broke into the school at night and hacked into the homeroom teacher’s computer. After successfully stealing the data, I smashed the PC to pieces with a metal bat I had brought with me. It was not a small act, but it was simply harassment.

I pay close attention to the security guards and use the blind spots of surveillance cameras to easily accomplish my criminal acts. I was able to do this because I had studied the security of my middle school and where the cameras were located when I was still going to school.

After that, it was even easier. I figured out where I was going to go and told the other school that I was declining the acceptance, pretending to be the student who had already been accepted. If that was difficult, I spread rumors about Ichinose middle School and the student by name so that the teachers at the other school would hear about it. To my delight, no one in my class was able to go to the school of their first choice. Except me.

I registered my email address and phone number on a dating site as a way to further push my then homeroom teacher. When I hacked into the site, words like “marriage activity” came up, so it must have been perfect.

I finished what I had to do in my middle school, and I looked at my high school certificate and thought.

“….It’s just starting.”

I had not been able to get any information about Shinya before. But there was no impatience. I’m sure if the chairman or someone related to him sees my name, he’ll start moving as soon as possible. I just have to get back at them.

“Well, I’ll do my best.”

And so I started my high school life, dragging my exhausted heart with me.

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