I chose to translate Masaki Sekiguchi’s route first for a simple reason; he’s the only one with a Bad Ending. And I love Bad Endings. The prologue can be found on my earlier blog post here, Just click the link to Youtube and turn on the Subtitles!
MC: I’m back…
Mr.Kobayashi: Welcome home, miss
When I opened the door, Mr. Kobayashi greeted me with a smile. There was something in that smile, as if he were impatient for my report.
K: How was your interview today?
MC: I didn’t get it. An absolute failure.
K: Really…? This is certainly because today’s company…
MC: This is the 24th company.
K: It’s really quite strange. All of your grades are excellent. To reject such a qualified candidate…
MC: B-but it’s not good enough… Besides, it’s not as if they’ll all reject me…
K: Yes, that’s true. There is no doubt that you’ll receive a job offer next week.
MC: That would be great, wouldn’t it..?
K: Your father returned today. He is already in the dining room.
MC: He came home early today, huh? I’ll go see him.
My father is usually working late and not returning home. We haven’t been able to talk together recently, so I decided to join him in the dining room. When I went to the long table in the dining room, my father was drinking a glass of whisky.
Drinking so early in the day, that’s unusual for him.
MC: Father, I’m home.
Papa: Oh, welcome back. I started eating early.
MC: You came back today. How rare.
P: From time to time, I get the idea in my head that I want to go home early and have a drink with you.
MC: I don’t drink whisky or anything that looks like it.
P: Oh, is that so, huh? Kobayashi, prepare a cocktail for Pepper.
K: Of course, sir.
Father was in a good mood as he ordered a drink for me. However, for some reason I felt uneasy.
P: Having a drink at this time of day is the best. Would you like a sip of my whisky?
MC: …Father, what is gong on?
P: Hm? Why do you ask that? There’s nothing in particular.
MC: Is there a problem at work…?
P: That’s stupid. Things are perfectly fine for the Sonobe Group.. You needn’t worry. You just do your best to live an easy and healthy lifestyle. But not in this area, it seems.
P: I heard you’ve been looking for a job… How come you only choose companies that are far away from here?
MC: That is… All the companies I passed the test for were in the countryside.
In reality, it was because I wanted the opportunity to get a job and live alone. It was a secret I had been keeping from my father but…
P: Do you intend to leave from here..?
MC: I think I want to try living by myself.
P: You don’t want to live and work here? I intended to create a position for you at Sonobe.
MC: Well, in that case, it’s pointless. If I am always being protected by Sonobe, I feel like I will always be a child and never grow up.
P: What are you talking about..? Keisuke also gave up a position to go to New York. I didn’t think you’d leave me as well.
I understood my father’s viewpoint. My father had always loved me as his own daughter, even if we didn’t share blood. In turn, he was very important to me. However, as long as I stay here, I will be a bird in a cage.
MC: I’m really going to leave here. Because otherwise, I’ll never start the new stage of my life.
P: I don’t think that’s possible if you can’t get a job.
My father looked down at his glass as he spoke, with hesitation. At that moment, a suspicion fell upon me.
MC: Father…Could it be that…You did something to my job search…?
P: You don’t have to leave…
MC: Did you interfere..? Did you pull strings to ensure I wouldn’t be hired?
P: You musn’t leave! What are you complaining about? I continue to ensure Sonobe thrives for your sake, don’t I!?
The expression of my father, who had suddenly begun to shout, quickly became pained as he set down his glass.
P:…Sorry but, I don’t seem to be feeling well. I’m going to bed early tonight.
MC: Did you have too much to drink? Are you alright?
P: I’m fine. I can walk by myself.
Then my father rose and left me in the dining room, reeling. I didn’t think I’d hear those words from him and I am so stunned that I do not move from my spot for a while.
When I return to my room, twilight colors my room red. The tests I had intended to pass and the information for my job search I had left behind lay on my desk. I took them all and threw them in the trash.
MC: I don’t have the freedom to leave this house.
I sat on my bed with a sigh. Not knowing what to do with this knowledge, I looked at the sky as night began to fall.
???: I beg your pardon!
Suddenly, I heard a loud voice from the other side of the gate. When I look out, I see a silhouette.
???: Excuse me! Excuse me, I need to see the president of this group!
He bangs on the gate again and again and raises his voice. If he had an appointment, the gates would’ve opened already without all of this fuss.
MC: A representative…?
???: Open up, please! I have very important information! Mr.Sonobe!
There was no sign of the gate opening. For one reason or another, I felt worried about this person. Just in case he had important information, I decided to go outside. When the man who had lost hope saw me, his eyes lit up.
???: Ah! Umm, is Mr.Sonobe home?!
MC: Umm, why are you here?
???: For what I just said! I just really need him to listen to what I have to say.
The man handed me his business card through the gate. It read:
Sekiguchi Corp, Agency of Importation
Naoto Sekiguchi, President. Director-General.
MC: You’re with the Agency of Importation? Um, do you have a meeting scheduled?
Naoto: No, I didn’t intend to come here! In reality, I’m here by accident. Just 5 minutes…No! 3 minutes would suffice! I just want to explain my business plan to Mr.Sonobe. Please!
This kind of unexpected visit was contrary to all of the usual rules of business. Naturally, Mr. Kobayashi wouldn’t have listened to him. However, without knowing why myself, the mans pleas had touched me.
MC:…Will it really be just 3 minutes…?
N: Yes! That’s completely fine!
MC: Wait a moment please. I don’t know if he’ll accept, but I’ll ask my father.
N: Father…? Ah, you must be Sonobe’s daughter.
When I returned to the estate, I heard the approach of sirens. While I stand there, disorientated, the gates open and an ambulance enters.
MC: What…Why is there an ambulance…?
Several hours later, I’m waiting outside of the emergency room. I watch the red light which says “Surgery in Process”
MC: Why…Why is my father…
A short while after Mr. Sekiguchi appeared at our estate, my father, who had returned to his room, had his lips turn blue and he fainted. Mr. Kobayashi discovered him when he came to tell him about the visitor and immediately called an ambulance which brought him to the emergency room.
N: Everything will be alright. They’ll save Mr.Sonobe.
Mr. Sekiguchi had also come to the hospital and was waiting with me for the operation to finish. Mr. Kobayashi, who was dealing with everything on his cellphone, could not sit in the waiting room. As I couldn’t help but feel anxious, I was thankful for what Mr. Sekiguchi, a man I had just met, told me.
MC: That’s true, right..? Father will…definitely…
At that moment, the operation room light turned off. Shortly after, a doctor wearing a surgeon’s uniform comes out.
MC: A-ah, my father…?!
Surgeon: He’s fine. It was very serious, but the operation was a success.
MC: T-thank goodness…
The immediate feeling of relief made my legs feel weak and I fell to my knees.
Surgeon and Naoto: Are you alright?!
The surgeon and Mr. Sekiguchi each take my by the shoulders at the same moment and call out to me in unison. They both seemed to notice and looked at eachother.
Masaki: My brother, what are you doing here?
MC: What’s going on?
Standing between the two, I looked at each in turn. The two men I’ve met today wear different styles but share similar traits. There was Mr. Sekiguchi with wide eyes and the surgeon with raised eyebrows. Sekiguchi, with wide eyes, seemed surprised while the surgeon furrowed his brows. The first to speak was the surgeon.
N: I could say the same to you, Masaki!
As they stared, their faces betrayed different emotions. Sekiguchi radiated an air of surprise, while the doctor’s expression went blank.
MC: So, you two know each other..?
N: Yes, we’re brothers.
N: I haven’t talked with you in so long, but I never imagined to meet you in a Tokyo hospital. You could have sent me a message—
M: …This isn’t really the time to catch up,
N:Ah yes, you’re right…
Although Sekiguchi said that he and this doctor were brothers, they didn’t seem to have much in common. They didn’t seem to get along well.
M: Can you stand?
M: Good, then I’ll give you the results of the operation now. Please sit here.
I sit down and the doctor sits by my side. Mr. Sekiguchi leaves the room in silence.