Wow... made it to chapter 6...
And the previous two chapters were within a few days of each other.
Light novels are cool, so I decided to (because f*** Yen Press, claiming things and making it so that it's hard to find translations) find downloads for all translated light novels for The Problem Children are Coming from Another World, Aren't They? (Mondaiji-tachi), The Irregular at Magic High School, and Sword Art Online (pretty sure they haven't claimed SAO yet, but better safe than sorry) (because those are the light novel series I've read). I have volumes 1-11 for the first and 1-17 for the second and third in english. If you're interested tell me and I'd be happy to post them somewhere and give them to you. I have no idea who translated the Magic High School ones, but I know that Mondaiji-tachi is Margref and Frozensama and that SAO is defan and tap-trans. At least the later ones (both Mondaiji-tachi and SAO)
On the topic of Magic High School, I recently rewatched the anime and it reminded me of something. A question (because of the 'triumph of magic over ABC weapons' line somewhere in there, won't say where). Why and who the f*** decided to group biological and chemical weapons with nuclear ones. WTF?! Biological and chemical weapons should be compared to conventional explosives, which have comparable price-per-kill and weight-per-kill to the BC in ABC weapons. Meanwhile, we have atomic (nuclear) weapons with price-per-kill and weight-per-kill both hundreds, if not thousands, of times lower than any other weapon. Except maybe sniper ammo used by a good sniper. Who decided to make biological and chemical weapons 'weapons of mass destruction?' Hell, in a lot of situations they're much weaker than just simple bullets or explosives. For example if the opponent has a gas mask, or, in the case of biological, a wet cloth or a simple respirator. Or if it's windy, or rainy, or in the case of some, even cold.
Something that bothers me about the story itself (this applies mostly to LNs, not the anime) is that the made-up rules of magic are more consistent than the laws of physics (speed of light is 100 times the speed of sound my ass, more like a million).
Well, sorry this took a while, but I've been so much worse, it's not that big a deal. 4 days got skipped because I'm a genius.
Calling yourself a genius, really?
Shut up imaginary voice of nobody I just made. Anyway, as I was saying, 4 days got skipped because I'm a 'genius' *sarcasm dripping off the word*. How? Well imagine you're taking a math course which is fairly difficult for you and has monthly exams... you get where this is going. Basically had to do a month of work in 3 days plus an exam. God my hand hurts from writing so much... yeah, it's a bit hard to understand, but once I do, the homework itself takes 1 second of thinking for every minute or so of writing, in other words, I know the answer basically instantly and need to write it for a while (and I f*cking hate writing my hand). Despite writing this in past tense, this is actually only the end of the first day... hope I do decent on the exam. Lesson from this? Don't keep putting off your homework and studying until you have a month's worth due in 3 days.
...At least the homework is graded by completion, not correctness, not that helps much since it's less than 5% of the total grade and I probably got all of it right anyway.
Update, half way through day two: 2.33 weeks done. Much less work for week 4 than the other 3. Mathematical logic is too easy. This problem for example, was a pain, but trivial to figure out:
Convert P⟷Q (P if, and only if, Q) to use only ↓ (not or, NOR):((((P↓P)↓Q)↓((P↓P)↓Q))↓(((P↓P)↓Q)↓((P↓P)↓Q)))↓((((Q↓Q)↓P)↓((Q↓Q)↓P))↓(((Q↓Q)↓P)↓((Q↓Q)↓P)))
It made me do P∧Q (P and Q) and P→Q (if P then Q, or ~P∨Q ((not P) or Q)), so the matter of making that was trivial, just do (P→Q)∧(Q→P).
Like seriously, I get it, you can express any boolean expression with just NOR or NAND. If anyone is good with boolean logic, you can tell me if I got it right, but I don't care much because the homework is graded for completion rather than correctness.
Well, this whole 'month of work, 3 days to do it (plus a fourth day with an exam)' is my fault entirely, I had a whole month to do it like everyone else (well really a month - a few days because of specifics of enrolling while still technically in high school (or middle school, the procedure is the same)(even if I'm homeschooled)).
Update, end day 3: done... now I just need to do well on the exam.
And exam done. Felt pretty easy.
Not that any of you care in the slightest, but I just felt like writing my frustration somewhere.
You just skipped/scanned over that, didn't you? You didn't give a f***, you're here for the story. Or at least, SAO, not some totally unrelated anime/light novel series. Well, here you are.
"Karu, you want to take a break?" Kirito asks for the ten billionth time in the past week.
"It's been two weeks, I'm fine," I say, despite being decidedly not fine. While most of the bandages had already been removed, that didn't change the fact that I still got tired really easily, at least compared to normal, I was weaker than normal, and certain actions hurt. Actually, most actions hurt, at least a little. Actually, most things still hurt quite a lot. I probably wasn't even recovered to the point I was immediately after with my previous injury because of the healing crystal then. Aside from amount of blood recovered. And I was constantly sleepy. Which was miserable because I didn't want to sleep because of nightmares. So I actually have two reasons for being constantly sleepy, nightmares that keep me from getting a good night's sleep and lack of blood which makes me light headed and sleepy. No wait, three, because I had to keep watch too because Asuna and Suguha couldn't and Kirito couldn't stay up all night, every night. Or even every other night or whatever.
But tired wasn't something I was at the moment.
"No, you're not," Asuna comments.
"I may be a princess, but I know enough about medicine to know that there's no way you're already fine," she says.
"I meant I'm fine at the moment," I say.
"You're too stubborn," Asuna mutters.
"Would you rather I be a whiny baby?" I ask.
Asuna sighs, "No."
"But, I—and I'm sure Kazuto too—would much rather you don't try to pretend you aren't hurt," she says, cutting me off.
"She's too stubborn for that," Kirito says.
"A town? Do we go in or just head around?" Asuna asks.
"Chances are the 'news' will have already reached them, so we should probably avoid it... then again supplies could be useful," Kirito says.
"Well Asuna and Suguha can just walk in, and I can come with them by simply dispelling the illusion magic and wearing my hood... then again, shining silver eyes aren't very normal," I say.
"You wouldn't happen to have a pair of sunglasses?" Suguha asks.
"No, unfortunately," I say.
"Well, we can go in and buy food or whatever else we need," Asuna says, referring to herself and Suguha.
"I guess that works, I'm going to take a nap meanwhile," I say, climbing into a tree as painlessly as I can.
Karu—turning over in the middle of a nightmare—falls out of the tree she was sleeping in.
Kirito—who'd been sitting at the base of the tree—practically jumps to his feet and catches the no-longer-sleeping girl, who lets out a slight cry of pain.
The two look at each other for a moment before the girl blushes and looks away and Kirito sets her down.
"Remind me not to sleep in a tree again until I don't have nightmares," she mutters. The instant she mentions nightmares, she wraps her arms around Kirito and starts crying gently.
"Why?" she asks through sobs.
"Why does it have to be us? Why do we have to fight?" she whines.
"It'll be okay," Kirito says, rubbing Karu's back.
"I don't want to fight," she says quietly.
"Just rest then," Kirito says.
"Okay..." she says, trailing off, closing her eyes and slumping forward.
Carefully setting the sleeping girl against the tree, he sits down next to her, holding her hand gently.
She slumps over sideways, her head falling on Kirito's shoulder.
She looks so cute like- stop before I embarrass myself again.
"...Kirito?" a sleepy voice says.
Kirito turns towards Karu.
"Hey Karu, sleep well?" he asks.
"For once," she says quietly.
"That's good," Kirito says with a smile.
"No nightmares this time, thanks Kirito," she says.
"I... didn't really do anything..." Kirito says.
"Well, you let me lean on you and held my hand," she says, blushing slightly since these were generally things done by couples.
"Let's make sure not to mention that to Suguha," Kirito says.
"Not mention what to me?" the person in question asks.
""Not telling,"" the two say at the same time.
"Awww, but I'm all out of things to tease you about," Suguha pouts.
"Sugu, did you get what we needed?" Kirito asks.
"Mostly," Suguha answers.
I don't want nightmares... but the alternative is embarrassing to the point where it might be worse. Like what am I supposed to say? 'Can I sleep with you?' No, that sounds very wrong. Maybe 'can I cuddle with you?' No, that's worse. I mean, Kirito would say yes anyway and wouldn't pretend to misunderstand and tease me about it, but that doesn't change how embarrassing it is.
Maybe 'can I sleep next to you?' I mean, that's better... but still embarrassing. Maybe just asking him to hold my hand would be enough?
Maybe I can just wait till Kirito is asleep and just move next to him. Though that would end up with some embarrassing situations if I don't wake up before Kirito. Actually, any of those options will result in an extremely embarrassing situation if I don't wake up before Suguha or—to a lesser extent—Asuna.
Except the hand holding one, that would be only moderately embarrassing.
Besides, that's rather unlikely given that even on the few nights I don't have nightmares, I consistently wake up before Asuna of Suguha.
So it's one of the last two, I guess. I'll go for hand holding, as embarrassing as it is.
Actually, I'll need to get up to keep watch anyway, so it's fine.
I untangle my cloak from around me and get up, walking over to Kirito who was keeping watch.
"Hey Karu, trouble sleeping?" he asks quietly.
I sit down next to him and rest my back against the log he too was using as a backrest and somewhat sadly answer, "As usual."
He reaches his arm behind me and pulls me towards him, hugging me. Well, half hugging, still nice though. And embarrassing, so I blush slightly and turn away.
"You wanna talk about it?" he asks.
"I haven't even fallen asleep yet, so nothing to talk about," I answer.
"Oh. You wanna stay with with me until you fall asleep?" he asks.
"Yeah," I say, yawning and allowing my head to fall back onto the log, looking at the stars.
I snuggle slightly closer to him for warmth and mutter, "Do you mind?"
"No. It's warm," he answers, keeping his head up and alert. Not that he really needed to, even I—in my half-asleep, not looking state—would probably notice if someone came.
"Wake me up in a few hours, I'll take watch," I say before moving my head somewhere more comfortable, which just happens to be Kirito's shoulder.
He chuckles ever-so-quietly and throws his cloak over me too, grabbing my hand with the arm that was previously wrapped around my shoulder.
"Thanks," I mutter, though it was probably incoherent. I close my eyes and squeeze Kirito's hand, relaxing in the warmth of two cloaks and two people.
"-ru. Karu," Kirito says, shaking me gently.
I open my eyes and rub them.
"Hey. My turn to take watch?" I ask.
"Yeah, thanks," he says. It was annoying that only Kirito or I could actually take watch because Asuna and Suguha were too easy to sneak up on. Plus, they weren't in great physical shape, so they needed rest. I mean, I wasn't either, but at this point I think I might be better than they are. Which is honestly embarrassing for an athlete and a mountain dweller, princess or not. Well, tournament matches last a few minutes at most and Asuna has had plenty of time to un-adapt from the reduced oxygen amount.
"Are you going to sleep here?" I ask, my face feeling slightly hot despite the cold night air. It's not that I really minded, it's just... I'm starting to think Suguha might be right. Like, I 'might' have a 'tiny' crush on Kirito... At least, that's what I think it is. Also, I'd probably end up falling asleep myself.
He chuckles slightly. "Probably not. You'd end up falling asleep then."
"Yeah, probably," I say, wrapping myself tightly in my cloak once Kirito gets up and moves over a bit before lying down.
"Wake me up if anyone shows up."
"Of course," I answer. It was unlikely at this point though. We were far enough that it was unlikely that they'd be able to find us. In fact, since we started moving towards Oykot, we'd only encountered 1 Laughing Coffin member and 1 random hunter who didn't recognize us and just left us be with some food.
Soon we'd probably be able to start actually getting a full nights sleep, which would be useful when we start climbing the mountain.
In just a few minutes, Kirito was sound asleep and I was left staring at the stars alone.
It was peaceful and the cool, pleasant wind blew across my face.
I sniff the air and smell a storm. I look around and see clouds in the sky, however they didn't look like they were coming this way and were far, so we'd probably be good. There'd only been a few times it rained on our trip and we would generally tie ourselves in trees with lots of leaves and wrap ourselves tightly in our cloaks or—when there were any—sleep under fir trees, which with their layers of foliage blocked out the rain completely and since they went down to the ground, they also blocked the wind and anyone from potentially seeing you.
However in this case, there were no firs or leafy trees, so it was a good thing the storm probably wasn't going this way.
I see some lightning in the storm and after about 2 minutes—I counted to measure the distance—I could hear thunder. I do a bit of mental math and get something like 40 kilometers away. That's plenty far.
I look around, may gaze eventually settling on Kirito's sleeping face. I feel my face heat up and look away, but soon find my gaze drawn towards him again.
I could just walk over to him and- No.
However my thoughts kept drifting back in that direction.
To distract myself from whatever I was thinking, I stand up and draw my sword, quietly clearing an area of leaves and swinging my sword. I immediately regret my decision as pain shoots through the various wounds on my body and I let out a silent cry of pain.
I swing my sword again, but much slower. Again and again and again. My arms would be tired, but it's not like a need arms for walking.
As the dawn light shines on Kirito's face, he opens his eyes and sits up. Finally... morning. I was probably about to fall asleep, no matter how hard I tried otherwise. My thoughts and eyes during the watch ended up continually drifting to Kirito, and sometimes to what I'd do without him... or rather, that I have no idea what I'd do without him. And some times more... intimate things.
"Good morning," I answer, followed by a yawn, tempted to just fall asleep. I'll just do that... I lean back and close my eyes.
Kirito sits down next to me since there wasn't really anything to do. No camp to pack up, no fire to light (since we already had embers from last night and would just need to add something dry to start it again). I open my eyes and turn my head to him.
"Sorry... you ended up staying up most of the night," Kirito apologizes.
"It's fine," I say with a yawn, "You stay up most of the night most nights. Besides, we're probably not leaving for a while longer anyway."
"Do you want to take a nap before Suguha or Asuna wake up?" Kirito asks.
"That... *yawn* ...is what I was planning to do," I say, leaning on him.
He smiles and moves some of my hair out of my face. "Wake me up sometime... not soon," I say and close my eyes.
I hear Kirito chuckle slightly and quietly say, "Sure."
I scoot as close as I can to Kirito and feel him wrap an arm around my shoulder.
"Just sleep a little for now," Kirito says and squeezes me slightly, causing me to wince.
"Sorry!" he says hurriedly.
"It's alright..." I say.
"-you two," came Asuna's voice, waking me from my relatively—at least as far as my sleep recently—peaceful sleep.
"Hey Asuna," Kirito replies.
"ey Aua," I mumble incoherently, causing Kirito to chuckle.
"You two are awfully cozy," Asuna teases.
"'m sleepy," I mumble, slightly more understandably this time.
"You two sure you're not a couple...?" Asuna teases.
I feel my face heat up and see Kirito turn red before pushing away from Kirito and creating some distance. And fall on my side.
"Gah!" I involuntarily let out a cry of pain and clutch my side which I had hurt.
"Are you alright?" Asuna asks hurriedly.
"I..." I pause, moving around a bit, "think so," I finish after confirming nothing hurt... much.
"What's going on?" a startled Suguha asks.
"Nothing!" I say hurriedly.
"I was just teasing them a- mumph," Asuna says before Kirito covers her mouth with his hand.
"What were they doing?" Suguha asks.
When Asuna tries to speak, Kirito covers her mouth again.
"You know what... I don't want to know," Suguha says, causing both Kirito and me to breathe a sigh of relief. I mean, it wouldn't be that bad... but it would be a pain.
And the worst part of being teased is that every time it reminds me that I'm starting to wish it wasn't just teasing. I mean, us actually being together... together-together together, that is. (yes, I did that on purpose, bite me)
"I'm gonna go start the fire and cook something," Asuna says. Oh yes, surprisingly, the princess can cook. Really well. Well, at least with decent ingredients. Ignore that three of the four people here are princesses and that the last one is a prince so saying 'the princess' is about as informative as saying 'the girl' or whatever. Which—in that context—would actually be sufficient.
Meanwhile... "I'll go back to sleep if that's alright," I say with a yawn.
"That's fine," Asuna says.
The small group of travels enter a clearing in the woods. It looked artificial, the trees had been cut down and the tree stumps dug out or burned.
In the middle stood a large, rather fancy, old fashioned house (I don't really know how to describe a Japanese mansion, but know that Oykot has Japanese style culture and architecture).
Suddenly Asuna freezes.
"Asuna?" Kirito asks.
"This is familiar, just can't quite place my finger on it," she answers.
"You know this place?" I ask curiously.
"Oh! It's my grandparents house, though the last time I got to come here I was very young," Asuna exclaims.
"Well... that's great," I say without a trace of sarcasm.
Asuna jogs up to the front of the house, the three of us following behind. Of course, the moment I start running I end up tripping over the remains of a tree stump.
I roll as I fall and manage to get to my feet with only a little stumbling and fast enough that Kirito doesn't get a chance to help, because that's generally embarrassing.
"Ow ow ow ow," I mutter, rubbing my shoulder which had hit the ground.
"You alright?" Suguha asks.
"Yeah, totally fine," I say with a hint of sarcasm.
"If you insist," Suguha says and we catch up to the waiting Asuna.
She walks up to the door and knocks gently.
Some voices could be heard inside before hurried steps approached the door. Small steps and sounds like 3 separate things, so probably either an invalid or an old person with a cane. Of course, knowing it was Asuna's grandparents tells me that it's the former.
"Who's- Asuna dear!" the old lady who opens the door says, hurrying over to Asuna and hugging her.
"You haven't visited in so long! We missed you!" she says, seemingly completely oblivious to Suguha, Kirito, and I.
"Grandpa!" Asuna says in most un-Asuna like fashion and hugs the old man who had come out.
"Asuna," the old man cheerfully says and hugs her back.
After the brief reunion, Asuna's grandpa asks, "So who are your friends?"
"Karu, Kazuto, and Suguha," she says, pointing to me, Kirito, and Suguha.
"As in the prince and princess of Aincrad?" the grandma asks in surprise. I guess they still consider themselves as people of Oykot, even if they live several tens of kilometers into Aincrad.
"Well come inside, come inside, you 4 look tired," Asuna's grandma says.
After we came inside and were offered tea and food (which we gladly accepted), Asuna decided to explain our current situation and how us being here was entirely coincidence, which earned a lot of worry from Asuna's grandparents. Like a lot. Finding out that your granddaughter is being pursued by an organization of assassins that successfully kill pretty much everyone at Aincrad's castle. During a party with lots of guards. Or perhaps it's because the guards were drunk.
I know this is a rather random ending, but I felt like putting an end to this chapter. Sorry for the literal 1000 words of AN.