First Posted at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu
Arc 3: Still, I’ll Remain Beside You
In the morning, the outside world bathed in the sun’s rays.
Nothing had changed in the world beyond the window since yesterday.
Eating my breakfast, I waited in my room excitedly. I wonder what face Mr Death will make when he comes today. Yesterday, I felt like I saw a side of Mr Death I had never seen before.
This is the first I am feeling like this, wanting to know someone better.
I felt my heart’s beating was just a little bit annoying.
I took a deep breath and let it out. But, remembering the events of yesterday, my cheeks felt hot and I felt light for some reason.
“He didn’t come.”
Noon passed, yet Mr Death didn’t come. If it were the usual, he would have come by now. Why? We had lots of fun yesterday, and it wasn’t like we parted on bad terms either. Yet…
At that moment, I heard the sound of something knocking against the curtain by the window.
…Is it perhaps?
“Hey, Mr Death.”
I called out in my empty room.
When I did that, the curtains by the window swayed, despite there being no wind.
“Are you there? Mr Death?”
“…Ah, I’m here.”
As wondered if the curtains fluttered, Mr Death appeared in front of me.
“Since when were you here? “
“I came just now.”
He was at a loss for words for a moment. He replied, “It’s true”, scratching his head as he placed a hand at the back of his neck. That Mr Death’s habit. He’d scratch his head or neck whenever he was troubled.
“…Hmm. You could have called out if you were here.”
“You seemed deep in thought, so I hesitated.”
Mr Death spoke plainly as usual.
Just like usual. It was so much like usual that it frightened me.
Although I had seen Mr Death being honest yesterday, Mr Deathstood beside my bed today as if it were a dream, an illusion.
Was it perhaps a dream…
No, it wasn’t possible. Because–.
I looked at the scrap of paper on the small table beside my bed. It was one half of the Ferris wheel ticket. One half of the ticket of the Ferris wheel we both rode.
“Hey, Mr Death.”
“What is it?”
“Yesterday was fun.”
“…Yeah, you’re right.”
I was right. It wasn’t a dream.
I let out a breath of relief as if confirmed of it.
But then, why…?
He spoke in a somewhat annoyed tone and intentionally looked away from me. What did I do wrong?
“Hey, Mr Death.”
“What is it now?”
“What happened? “
“You see, yesterday–“
Hearing my words, Mr Death shook his head lightly and gave a sigh.
Then, interrupting my words, he asked.
“How is your body? “
“Eh…ah…yeah. It’s fine.”
“I see. if that’s so, I’m glad. Then I’ll get going now.”
“Huh…? But you just came?”
“I’m a little busy today. Then, see you.”
Saying so, Mr Death disappeared beyond the window.
Seeing Mr Death act like that, I felt sad…no, I felt angry.
After all, we had had such fun together yesterday. Why couldn’t he be like that today too? I certainly cannot deny the feelings that I displayed. I can’t deny them, but!
…I don’t mean to say that I like Mr Death or anything like that. But, I did have fun with Mr Death, to the point that I felt glad that I had gone out with him…
I couldn’t think.
My body felt heavy for some reason and I felt sleepy. Maybe it was my fatigue from yesterday.
“Let’s rest for a while.”
Lying on my side, I closed my eyes.
I opened my eyes to someone calling my name. Before I realised it, it was time for dinner.
The head nurse propped me up and asked, “Will you eat? ” But before I could even finish half of it, sleep got the better of me, as I went to bed even before the head nurse came to collect my tray.
I realised something was wrong that night.
I woke up with shortness of breath, opening my eyes to a pitch-black room. Seemed like it was still the middle of the night.
I tried to reach for my phone to find out the time, but my body didn’t move.
I felt my heart beating louder than usual.
My shortness of breath grew worse, as my vision began to turn hazy.
Through my hazy vision, I saw Mr Death standing in front of me.
Ah, I see. My time has come.
He said I would die within the next 30 days, but I didn’t think it would be this early.
Maybe that was why Mr Death asked me if I had any regrets at that time.
Because he knew that I would die.
“I’m gonna die…right?”
My hands trembled, a stark contrast to my nonchalant tone. I balled my hands into fists, not letting him notice, and looked at Mr Death standing beside my bed.
But, Mr Death shook his head as he took the nurse call button in his hands.
Is what I wanted to ask, but all that escaped my mouth were wheezes as I struggled to breathe.
But it seemed like my words reached Mr Death. As he held the nurse call button, his other hand gently covered my tightly gripped hand.
It was pleasantly cool. Yet, why? Why did it feel so warm?
But, yeah… If I die, I won’t be able to talk to Mr Death like this. That made me feel a little lonely.
As I blankly gathered my thoughts, I felt him put strength into the hand that held me.
“You won’t die now. …I won’t let you die.”
As my consciousness faded, I heard his voice.