For the first time in 250 chapters…
S30 – Taboo
I’m watching a dream.
A horrible dream with a terrible sting in the tail.
Absolutely everything just gets worse and worse.
No matter how much I want to do something, no matter how much I try to do something, my actions instead allow the situation to become even worse. A situation that feels like I’m being dragged down into a bottomless swamp. The more I struggle the more I sink down into the swamp. And then, when I have been completely submerged in the swamp, finally……
I wake up suddenly. It was like I was seeing a dream. A cursed dream with an unbelievably bad sting in the tail.
When I opened my eyes, what first came into view, was an unknown ceiling. When I absentmindedly gazed up at the ceiling, I felt that there was someone right next to me.
「Shun! You’re awake!?」
When I looked in the direction of the flustered voice, I saw Katia sitting. Matching her voice, her face also looked restless and weary, and also relieved, all muddled up together.
「Are you okay?」
「Ah, yeah. I’m okay.」
Katia braced herself while asking me that, and pressured by the mood I gave that response right away.
「I’m so glad. Since you wouldn’t wake up no matter how much Treatment Magic was cast on you, I was worried that maybe you’d never wake up.」
It seems that Katia had tried casting Treatment Magic on me the whole time. I thought it was no wonder that she had a worn-out expression. Then, just when I had thought that, tears started running down Katia’s face.
「I’m glad. Truly glad……」
Seeing the tears running down Katia’s face, I rushed to do something without really knowing what I should do.
「I’m okay. See, there’s nothing wrong with me. Okay?」
I think I’m doing a poor job of trying cheer her up, but I think it’s better to play up that I’m feeling okay instead of doing nothing. Actually, there’s no discomfort in my body. There’s no injuries either, and I’m not feeling any pain anywhere. Perhaps it’s because I’ve just woken up, but apart from feeling a bit sluggish I’m the very image of health itself. Physically at least……
「Are you really okay? You look somewhat pale though?」
Katia really is unusually worried. She cried for a start, and perhaps the situation was worse than I had thought. I’m aware that I probably looked like I was suffering while I was unconscious. If I never woke up no matter how often Treatment Magic was cast, and I also looked like I was suffering badly, then surely people would worry.
「Yeah, I’m fine. However, I’m a bit thirsty I guess?」
I sweated a lot, and the clothes that I’m wearing absorbed that and are clinging to my skin. Due to losing quite a lot of fluids, my throat is parched.
「Ah. Then, wait a bit while I get some water.」
Katia quickly got up, and left at a jog. Watching her back as she leaves, I feebly sink deep into the bed that I’ve been sleeping on.
In a corner of my field of vision, or rather, maybe I should say in a corner of my mind, there is a word floating. The feeling is like when Appraisal is used. Since I woke up that word has been standing out to an unpleasant degree. Just by focusing on that word I begin to feel sick. However, unlike Appraisal, that word cannot be turned off.
Written there is, Taboo.
While suppressing my nausea I concentrate on those letters that are standing out ominously. When I do so, the Taboo item is displayed as a menu.
Details on all items in the System
Special item n%I=W』
Just by opening the menu I feel an intense attack of nausea. Contained within there is a repulsiveness, as if this concentration of malice is being shown off. Disregarding my thoughts and emotions, a fit of chills comes over me. While being driven by an instinctive urge to want to close the menu, I somehow endure it. Enduring my nausea, I open the System overview.
Situation before System activation
Situation after System activation』
The moment I opened it, another wave of nausea strikes. It’s as if I can hear a voice coming from the words.
That thought strikes into me as if it’s a curse. I try to consciously ignore that thought that makes me feel nauseated and revolted. There is a contradiction in trying to ignore something consciously. Even so, I feel that I’ll go mad if I don’t do that. To be honest, I don’t want to look at this any more. However, I must look at it. Because I must confirm whether the contents of the dream I just had are correct or not.
The dream that I had seen, was that of a cursed legend. Rather than being from the point of view of some person, it was shown from an general view, a legend of this world’s past. This is just my intuition, but that was something different to Taboo. Someone might have shown that to me. I’ll put aside thinking about who that might have been for now.
At any rate, I must confirm this. Forcing my body that is almost trembling, I look through the various items one by one. Situation before System activation, MA Energy, Situation after System activation. What is written there is almost identical to what I saw in my dream. Before the System activation, this planet wasn’t that different to Earth. However, it is noted that there existed a creature called the dragon that doesn’t exist on Earth. Without emotion, the article has the stark feeling similar to a list of plain facts. However, while I glance over the words, that thought comes again, as if striking me.
While shaking that off, I continue to read. A strange energy called MA Energy was discovered by mankind, and they began to use it. Without knowing that it was the life force of the planet itself, and that by using it the lifespan of the planet would be considerably reduced. That in turn brought down the wrath of the dragons, who began to destroy mankind. The one who protected mankind from the dragons was the Goddess Sariel. However, the dragons gave up on both mankind and the planet, and went away. Then, having used up the MA Energy, the countdown to the planet’s collapse began. Mankind showed no gratitude for being saved, and attempted to sacrifice the Goddess Sariel to revive the planet. This induced the rage of Administrator Gyuriedistodiez. In order to save the Goddess Sariel, he had the System put into operation. This was in order to reconcile the wishes of the Goddess Sariel with keeping her alive.
When I had read that far, Katia returned with a cup and a container of water.
「Shun!? You’re as white as a sheet!?」
Does my face really look that bad I wonder? Katia rushes over to me in a panic, put the cup and container to the side, and began to cast Treatment Magic while touching my forehead. Since the cause is mental rather than physical, trying to heal my body with Treatment Magic won’t show any effect. However, Katia’s consideration does help lift my heart which is running wild.
「Thank you. I feel a bit better.」
Though I tried to convey that as my actual feelings, perhaps Katia doesn’t grasp that and looks at me in worry. Because I’m sweating even more, I’ve gotten thirstier than before. I reach out to pick up the cup Katia had put down. But, before I can take the cup Katia grabs it, pours water into it and then brings it over to my mouth. Is she trying to make me drink it? Since I’m not actually sick this is a bit embarrassing or something.
「I, I can drink it myself okay.」
「No, drink now!」
Losing to the pressure from an awfully aggressive Katia, I take a drink right away. The cool water flows down my dry throat. In the blink of an eye I’ve drained the whole cup, and perhaps realising that I hadn’t had enough, Katia immediately prepares a second cup. Once I’ve drunk the second cup, I can finally catch my breath.
Even while drinking, I looked through the Taboo menu. In general, it is the same details as in my dream. There are portions missing from the Taboo content, such as Potimas’s name not coming up, and the fact that the dragons stole the MA Energy. However, the details are almost the same as in the dream.
I close the System overview. I want to look over the other menus, but I don’t think my willpower will hold up. When I try taking a quick glance through the other menus, the Details on all items in the System menu is so packed with information that I get sick just from looking at it. Simply reading through every last item would normally be hard enough, but since I feel increasingly cornered mentally with every word I read, I don’t think I’ll be able to read through it all any time soon. I give up and look over the Update log next, but that is packed with an equally painful number of words. At that point, my willpower gave up.
I close the Taboo menu. Even when closed, the Taboo words never vanish from a corner of my mind. Then, that particular thought also oozes out from there. Compared to when the menu is open it’s not so bad, but when I consider that this will carry on forever I feel sick.
A heave a big sigh, and get up from the bed.
「Shun, you should rest.」
「No, I gotta go there.」
For a while now, the lower floor has been noisy. It seems that this is the second story of a building. As if guided by something I leave the room, and head down the stairs. Katia follows me from behind. Then, upon reaching the bottom of the stairs, there is a person who I had seen just before I fell unconscious.
「About that matter, could I also hear about it in detail?」
In response to my voice, the white girl turns around to look at me. Several pupils look straight at me. Those pupils that killed Julius-onii-sama.
Disclosure of information（but I didn’t say that was all it has）
The information that was intentionally stuck out, was removed on purpose for D-sama’s personal enjoyment. The article gives the impression that mankind is generally at fault. On top of that, simply looking at the words induces feelings of guilt to strike the mind. When such things remain in your head day and night, even someone mild-tempered like Shiro-san would flip out for sure. The details of the remaining items come gradually.
Shun saw a dream. Who showed him that dream?
When Shun is referring to a particular “thought”, that would be a reference to “Atone” based on the context.
A note on Katia’s gender and how people refer to her. In Japanese, it’s very rare to use the equivalents of “he” or “she”. In other words, there’s no real indication as to whether Shun sees Katia as male or female based on the Japanese words he uses. To avoid confusion I’m generally trying to always use female pronouns in the translation when people are referring to Katia as she is now and male pronouns when specifically referring to Kanata’s lifetime.
With regards to the words on Taboo at the end, it reads more like something from a character within the story rather than the author, as the author doesn’t use honorifics to refer to the characters. The style is fairly lighthearted though and doesn’t seem to match any known character. Maybe this will become clearer in future.