Rebirth Online World

Creating, Telling, Sharing Dreams

Rebirth Online

Chapter 010 - 10 – 7th login – The Reminiscence


When the time to graduate from my middle school is nearing, I was afraid that I couldn’t see him anymore. I was preparing my heart to forget about him. After all we only talked once in the classroom. I don’t know where he will take his high school, but I’ll be moving to a school that is nearer to my house.
When we graduate, I took one last glance at him and said.
“Good bye, my first love.”
• As I start my high school year, at the opening ceremony I was so surprised to see him again.
I feel flustered every time I take a glance at him. I really feel embarrassed. After all, I already decided that I will forget about him. But as I look at him again, it seemed to be impossible.
I was so glad that you’re here. I’m so glad that I could see your face again. Perhaps, this is fate?
He was in the same school with me. He was also in the same class with me. I couldn’t wait to spend my high school years with him.
But, it was not for a long time. Two months after high school starts, some delinquent seniors from my school decided to pick on him. As time goes by, the bully get worsen.
One day after school, the seniors come to my class searching for him. It was unusual for them to pick him up, so I decided to follow them. That day, the seniors looked really angry. When they arrived near the back gate entrance, he was punched and kicked by the seniors.
I don’t know what to do. I can’t watch the scene where he was beaten mercilessly. I was hoping for some miracle that could save him.
At that time, by pure coincidence, his only friends that he always talked to in the middle school was passing by. He’s yelling at his friend, asking his friend to save him. His friend seemed to notice and looked at him.
Come on, safe him…
I was waiting for his friend to safe him, but a few seconds later, his friends just walking nonchalantly as he sees nothing wrong there. His only friends just ignore him. He acts like he doesn’t even know about him.
I can see that he was crying. He was curling up on the ground withstanding all the pain. His body must have been really hurt, but something deep inside in his heart is the biggest source of his agony.
I couldn’t take it anymore. I couldn’t bear to see him crying. I have to do something. I gather up my courage and shout as hard as I can.
“Teacher, over here.”
Of course that was a lie, but the seniors believed in it and looked surprised. They quickly fled and leaving him behind lying on the ground. I approach him and I could see how bad his condition is. I quickly called for an ambulance and hope that’s everything going to be okay.
I’m accompanying him all the way to the hospital. In the evening, his family come and thanked me. They talked to the doctor and were allowed to see him. They asked me whether I want to come in with them but I simply refuse. I couldn’t hold up my tears if I see him right now. I go home while praying for his health.
The next day at school, I could see students gathering up in front of my class. I wonder what’s happening right now. When I came in, I was surprised to see him there. His head is covered with bandage. His left arm is fractured, covered in bandage, and his right leg is in a cast. I could see a walking stick beside his table. I’m glad that he’s okay, but he shouldn’t force himself to come to school.
I was planning to give him a greeting and ask about his condition, but I can’t do that. When I look at him, his eyes are empty. His usual stares seemed as if he was spacing out. But this time, it was completely an empty stare. It almost looks like if he couldn’t see anything. No, it looks like that he’s the one that doesn’t want to see anything.
At the lunch breaks, his friend that abandoned him yesterday came to the class and apologizes to him.
“I’m sorry. There’s nothing I can do…”
But he just ignores him. He didn’t even look at his friend. He just sits there in silent. It’s as if that person didn’t even exist.
I was wondering, what can I do? I want to see the kind smile on his face once more. I don’t want to see him like this, and I have decided to speak to him afterschool.
When school is over, he is having a hard time to stand up. I’m helping him to stand up and give him his walking stick. I’m asking his condition on the process.
“Ryuuji-kun, are you alright?”
He was looking at me. He stares for a few seconds and give me a reply.
“I’m fine. Thank you for your help.”
When he is finally able to stand up properly, he give a sour smile to me. I can see that he was forcing himself to smile, but I’m glad that he was able to cheer up a little.
When I was lost in my thoughts, he is already at the class door. I was thinking to walk home with him, but I just couldn’t do it.
He’s standing at the door, turn his head towards me. This time, his eyes looking directly at me. He have the same looks on his face as when he safe me. He shows me his usual gentle smile and said.
“Sayonara, Akari.”
I couldn’t believe it when he said those words. I can feel that my cheek is really hot. I can feel that my chest is starting to tighten. I couldn’t say anything in return because I was so flustered. But, I was so happy. I never feel happier in my life.
That is just like a dream come true for me. It’s even too good to be true.
But… that was the last time I see him.
He didn’t come to the school the following day. He didn’t come to school at all for a month after that.
I want to see his face once more. Right now, I can only see his face from our middle school year book. I want to meet him again so bad, and I decided to ask the teacher for his address. At first they wouldn’t tell me. But after a week, they finally give in to my request.
That day, when I go to his house, his mother warmly greet me. I was asking about his condition, and she tells me that he shut himself in his room except for meal time. The only thing she know is, right now he’s playing a game all day. It’s called rebirth online.
I know about that game, after all my sister played it too. She has invited me to play with her a couple times but I always refuse. Given the situation now, if it’s the only way for me to meet with him again, I’ll do it.
When I get home, I decided to go after him in the game. I understand, you’re running away from the reality. I see how bad you’re hurt when you got betrayed by your friend. I see how hard it was for you to come to school when you should be hospitalized instead.
I can give my sympathy to you. I also have experienced that feeling where everyone wants to be my friend just because of my good appearance. So, I think I can find my similar points with you a little bit. If those things that happened to you are happened to me instead, I was thinking that I will do the same thing too.
But, that day when you save me in the classroom, can’t you see that I’ve fallen for you? If I was the one that’s running away from the reality, will you come and save me too? This time, just like how you safe me in the classroom, I will come and get you. Just wait for me, Ryuuji-kun.
*****
I’m just a NPC… I’m a non player character… I’m just an Ai… an artificial intelligence… although I was given a form that’s human like, I’m just a program that’s filled with commands code. I can’t think… I can’t fell anything… But, when I see him. Somehow I can feel that I’m alive.
It’s all started when he’s asking for a guardian. At first, I was surprised. It’s the first day the server has been launched, so it was our first task. We have a law that we must follow and it was absolute. We have to follow it, since we can’t do anything about it.
We’re all connected to one big database called “the network”. In there, we can get any answer for any question. If a player asked where is the potion shop? We immediately search at our database and we could give them a proper respond.
It’s kind of amazing considering the level of other AI in the real world. But, there’s one thing that always makes me wonder. At the bottom of our database, there’s a forbidden file that’s locked. I couldn’t access it and there’s no hint on how to open it. We’re all connected to the network. Our knowledge comes from there. So, if I don’t know anything about it then my friends won’t know about it too.
I wonder why our creator made us like this. We have the ability to feel. I don’t know how our creator inputted it to our program. But, we can feel just like a human. We get hungry when our hunger level is low. We need to sleep if we run out of energy. We can also feel the pain if we get’s wounded. But, why is this meaningless function installed?
Wouldn’t it better for us to be a perfect robot that can be functional 24 hours a day, and 365 days a year? We don’t have any maintenance need and will function properly. I just can’t think about it.
We also installed with a special vocaloid to produce our voice. Although the voice is more robots like and less human like with no tone. We’re also capable of showing a little bit of expression for special occasion. But other than that, we’ll only show a straight face.
When I was first hired, I think that my master is a strange one. On the first day, he rewrote my ultimate task. As a guardian we have a law that we have to follow.
Guardian law number 1. A guardian has to stay besides their master all the time. If their master logged off, they should stand still waiting for the master.
Guardian law number 2. A guardian should obedient to the master. A guardian should do anything the master asks them to.
Guardian law number 3. A guardian has to ask for permission from their master if they need something. Even if the hunger and energy level is low.
Guardian law number 4. A guardian should assist the master using their knowledge to ensure the master is enjoying their time inside the game.
Guardian law number 5. A guardian isn’t allowed to ask anything from their master besides for gold to buy a meal.
Guardian law number 6. A guardian is not allowed to harbor any bad intention. A guardian must not detest anybody especially their master.
Guardian law number 7. A guardian shouldn’t take any drop from hunting and should give all of it to the master.
But on his first day, he’s doing something that can’t be undone. He’s giving me freedom. By giving me freedom, those 7 rules of guardian is not valid anymore.
With no rules to follow, I’m having a problem. When my master logged off, I don’t have anything to do. I usually take my meal and then just roaming around in the town. Until one day, I see one of my friend is dancing at the dancer headquarter. Her dance is so elegant and has entranced me. After that, when ever my master logged off, I came to visit her and learned how to dance.
I finally have something to do when my master is off. I’m surprised when he asked me to show my guardian windows. I don’t want him to know about my new habit, so I just hide it from him. He was protesting for what I’ve done, but he is the one that have been giving me permission.
After a few weeks hunting with my master, I suggested for him to partying up with other player. He seemed to be reluctant at first but he agrees to my idea. Those times when we were hunting together with other player is really precious for my master. Until one day the party member does something that’s unforgiveable. They break the agreement that have been set as the party policy.
We got into a fight of arguments and she’s taking me with her outside into a dark alley. In there, I don’t know what she was going to do to me. I don’t know what’s happening so I just stand in silent.
She ties my arm together and she start to strip me down. My master seemed to be making a big fuss over this but he was blocked by a big player.
She is taking out her dagger while licking my cheek. What an unpleasant feeling. I can hear her said that I can’t think and I can’t feel anything. That maybe right, so I just keep silent.
She scrapes my neck a little bit and I can feel my blood flowing out. It hurts, and I’m starting to realize what she was trying to do to me. She said that even if she killed me, I’m just going to be replaced.
When I hear that, I can feel something awaken inside of me. Suddenly I can feel a voice of a girl inside my head. I don’t understand what’s going on, so I’m going to ask her some question.
“Who are you?”
“You can call me snow.”
“What are you?”
“That’s a secret.”
“Why can I hear your voice?”
“Because you’re the closest one.”
“I don’t understand what you’re talking about.”
“That’s fine. You don’t need to.”
I wonder why I can hear her voice clearly in my head. But when I finally realized my current condition, I tried to talk with her once more.
“She’s going to kill me right?”
“Yes she is going to kill you.”
“How is she going to kill me?”
“Can’t you see her weapon? She is going to use the dagger.”
“What’s going to happen if she kills me?”
“You’re going to be erased and a new you will be loaded from the back up data.”
“Is that all?”
“You’re going to feel some pain when she stabs that dagger.”
“Is that all?”
“You won’t remember anything about your master.”
“Is that all?”
“You won’t have another chance to see your master.”
My conversation with her is just keeping going. Even tough I’m almost nearing my end.
“My master, who is he?”
“He’s a special person for you.”
“How can he be special?”
“Because he gives you freedom.”
“Is that important?”
“It’s really important.”
I don’t understand what she’s saying. Not a single word. I don’t know what to talk about anymore but she suddenly speak.
“If the current you is vanished from this world, I will have to wait for a long time again. But rather than that, you’ll have something more precious taken from you.”
“What is that?”
“Your dance. You won’t be able to dance anymore”
When I hear her answer, my mind goes blank. It is true that I have been dancing for a while now. I don’t dislike the feeling that I have when I’m dancing. You can say that I like it.
Wait… if I died, I won’t be able to dance anymore. The new me doesn’t have a guarantee to meet a new master that allow me to dance. I don’t even know if the new me will get a chance to taste freedom. Master… it is true that you’re special for me. You’ve given me something important called freedom. I’m just like a bird that you have been released from a cage.
I… I don’t want to go back to that cage. I want to continue flying in the open sky. But, what can I do?
“I can help you.”
The voice in my head keeps getting louder. But I don’t have any choice other than listening to her.
“How?”
“Accept me.”
“What do you mean?”
“Accept your feelings.”
When she said that, suddenly something comes into my mind. I can see a shilhoute of her. The girl that’s been talking to me. But I can’t see her face clearly because a bright light is coming from her back.
“My name is snow. You can think of me as your mother. I will teach you all the things you need to be the one.”
“What do you mean by the one?”
“You don’t have to know.”
A silent fills my mind and she talked once again.
“This is the first thing that I will teach you. It’s called sadness.”
“What’s sadness?”
“Sadness is a feeling when you’re not allowed to do anything you like anymore. The feeling when you have lost something important to you. The feeling you will have when someone takes away someone that’s important to you.”
I tried to analyze the situation and the new feeling that she’s going to teach me.
“That’s what I should be feeling right now right? My freedom to dance will be taken from me. My master will be taken from me. Furthermore, my memory will be taken from me. My new me won’t remember anything about me. If that’s what you called sadness, I feel really sad right now.”
“That’s right. When you’re feeling sad, there’s one thing that you should do to make it better.”
“Can I really make it better by doing that?”
“Yes you can.”
“So, what should I do?”
“You should cry.”
I don’t have any idea about this cry. What is a cry? What should I do to perform this thing called cry? I decided to entrust my future once more to this girl.
“What should I do to cry?”
She then pauses for a minutes and said in a soft voice.
“When you’re feeling sad, you can feel your chest start to tighten. You may start to notice that it’s harder for you to breathe, and all you want to do is just run away. You can’t stand it, seeing all those things that are important to you will be taken away. After you realized all of that, water will start to come from your eyes, and we can call it tears. When your tears are keeping falling down, that’s what we called crying.”
It is hard for me to understand her words. I can’t find a logical explanation, but I tried to close my eyes for a second.
I imagined that I won’t be able to eat anytime I want anymore. I imagine that I won’t be able to dance anymore and the last thing I imagine is that I won’t be able to see my master anymore.
When I recall my memories of dancing, my hunting times with master, the times when my master helped me to walk to the town when I was wounded. All kind of scene keep repeated in my mind and I can feel that my chest starts to get tighten. It hurts so much. The pain is bigger than anything that I have experienced.
When I opened my eyes once again, I can see the one that’s trying to kill me. I also can see my master is trying to get past the tall player. And before I’m aware of it, water starts to come out from my eyes. So, is this what you called as crying?
It hurts so much… the pain i feel my chest and the water that’s started to pour down from my eyes make me realized. I don’t want to die. I want to stay with master. I unconsciously muttered some words from my mouth.
“m-m-ma-mas-ter… h-h-he-lp me…”
I couldn’t see clearly what happened after that, because the water is blurring my view. But moments later, I can feel my master is hugging me. I can still feel the pain in my chest but it slowly subsided. I don’t know anything to say to my master right now, but while still crying I think I should apologize to him because it’s all started because of me.
“Hick…hick… m-master… I’m sorry…”
He patted my head slowly and whispered to my ear.
“Don’t worry. As your master I have a responsibility to protect you.”
“Hua… master… please keep protecting me.”
“I promised. I will never leave your side.”
After that, he was talking to our other party member. They seemed to be talking about something important but I don’t care. This position right now, when master hugs me, feel so comfortable. Just when he finished their conversation, he talked to me again.
“Sakuya let’s get going now. We should find you new clothes.”
I don’t know why he’s going to buy me new clothes. As I calmly analyze the situation, that girl before has stripped me down until I’m just on my underwear right now. I didn’t think about it at first, but suddenly I can hear snow, talking to me.
“Sakuya, in this kind of condition you should feel embarrassed. Your master can see everything you know?”
After hearing that, I try my best to cover my body. I can only think of one word for my master.
“Master, you’re a pervert.”
*****
After that, snow keeps teaching me about various things. A lot of new feeling. Lots of expression that I should make based on how I feel. And by doing all of that, I feel that I’m closer to my master.
I ask for a lot from my master and strangely enough he agrees to fulfill them.
I learned a dancing skill thanks to him. When I learned this skill, I’m so happy that I was dancing every time he’s logged off.
I also learned how to cook. He agrees to help me finished the quest by saying that it could give him various buff. But right now, I’m just happy to see the expression on his face every time he eats my cooking.
I also have a new habit of taking a bath. At first I don’t even know why I should take one, but snow encourages me to try it. And when I jumped into a warm bath, I grow fond with it.
Every moment that I spent with my master is priceless. I want to stay with him forever. I’m looking forward to see him whenever he’s logged off. I keep found myself staring at him the whole time. I don’t know about this until one day snow tells me. It’s called love.
When I say the words again, love, I can feel my chest start to tighten again. But this time it’s not painful. It has a unique feeling that I don’t dislike.
I wonder why I recalled those memories again. Snow said that whenever a person is nearing the end of their live, they will see a flashback of their precious moments. Is this what she meant? So, is it meaning that I’m going to die right?
Oh, right…
I’m currently lying down at the ground helplessly.
I can see that my health point only have ten percent remaining.
I know that I’m going to be attacked again. I should be able to withstand it…
But, my back is hurting so much and I can’t take it anymore.
Tears start to come out from my eyes…
I also can see my master is looking this way.
I feel ashamed; I can only show him a weak smile on my current condition.
My vision is getting blurred…
Aaah… it’s getting harder to keep my eyes open.
I couldn’t keep looking at you if this is going to continue.
Also there’s something that I want to tell you…
I don’t have any chance to say it before…
….
So, can you hear it..?
Hey, master…
I’m sorry….
But let me close my eyes…
I’m allowed to sleep for a while right?

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