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Oden, Japanese winter dish

Prologue – 02 – Listen to Me

Prologue 2: Listen to Me

Author: Kappa Alliance/Midori Yuma

Link: https://ncode.syosetu.com/n3862be/

Translated by Gumihou 

 

Listen to me.

My name is Tooru Saiga, a first-year high school student.

In my previous life, I was the Black Demon of the North and was the most powerful of the Three Great Demon Kings in a different world called Maydea.

It may sound silly to you, but I really do remember my time in that world as well as that humiliating moment when I was killed by the Hero.

 

Right now, I am about to have dinner with my comrades who also recalled their past lives at Yuri Shizuka’s home.

Yuri’s family have been landowners for generations and he lives in a fine Japanese-style mansion.

It was a cut above my ordinary apartment house or Maki’s miserable little flat.

Yuri’s family are all good people, and honestly speaking, it really does look as if a person’s life in this world is reflected by their deeds in their past life.

Had my current life’s parents still been together, they would have eventually cheated against each other and eventually divorced, those two pachinko mad bastards. As for Maki, well, her parents were dead.

See that? That’s a perfect example of how current lives are influenced by karma from a previous life.

“O-o-o- den~~ It’s oden~~ Yay~~!”

Maki, who loves food above all things now, could guess what dinner would be the moment we passed through Yuri’s gate.

She still has the look of a villainess beauty with her dark red hair in loose ringlets from her previous life, it’s a shame that she doesn’t act more like how she looks.

 

[1] I would like to say something about her shameless actions but my stomach is currently reacting to the simmering sound of oden bubbling in its broth.

After all, I am in the body of a high school boy amid puberty.

In the end, no matter how great and powerful a person I had been in the past, I have lost all specs and status just by dying and [1] reincarnating into a world where such things don’t exist outside of fiction.

“Please go ahead and help yourself, alright?”

“…ah, thank you for the food.”

Yuri’s mother is a good person.

She even welcomed me, a person with a bad look in their eye, into her home way back then.

“What kind of things do you like when it comes to oden? For me, it has to be the white radish, eggs and Hanpen [2], however, the Mochi Pouch [3] is kind of…”

“Eggs are a must, but I can do without the Hanpen.”

“I like Ganmodoki [4],” [1] said Yuri with a smile.

“…you really do have the stink of an old man about you,”

Well, to be fair, we are all old men (and woman), aren’t we?

Yuri’s hobbies all have the stench of old men about them. No matter what, they cannot be considered age-appropriate hobbies.

The time we spent as adults were longer than we have been alive in this world.

My parents always did say I have a cold look in my eyes. Which I thought was stupid.

Looks like they don’t really like the way I look at them.

Well, in the first place, being a Demon King aside, I can’t stand obeying adults who did not even have their shit together. It was an insult to be born to these lowlifes.

“Ah, Miyaka, Tooru-niichan is here~”

Yuri’s younger sister had been staring at me for a long time now. She must find it awkward to hang out with us oldies and was feeling a bit shy. On the other hand, it feels awkward for me to be stared at by a third-grader.

I had rescued her once from some delinquents before. Ever since then, she tends to give me these strange and meaningful stares.

Yuri called Miyaka over again, but she still refused to come over.

“I guess she’s a bit shy… but that’s kind of adorable, isn’t it~”

This brother’s words are a bit bad.

No scratch that, it’s very bad.

However, you sure look like you fit in normally with your family. Surely no matter how lovely your family is, don’t your previous life memories get in the way of fitting in?

“Aren’t you eating way too much? Gluttonous women won’t be liked, you know?”

“… I don’t expect people to like me as I am anyway,”

Maki had already eaten twice as much oden as I had, outpacing me quite a while ago.

Part of the reason why I hardly know the word restraint was due to my past life as a Demon King who pretty much have anything I wanted.

However, this girl had always been a big eater, in her past life and now.

“You don’t have the right to talk about being too much, [1] you old porny harem keeper…”

“Haa… I thought you’d bring that up,”

Each time she got stuck, Maki would inevitably bring up this topic.

“Maki-chan, you really should not step on Tooru-kun’s landmine like that,”

“Humm, how pitiful. The princess who betrayed you to the Hero was later chased down and killed by the very same Hero. I’m not sure who had it worse but the Demon King in this story sure died a terrible death, didn’t he?”

“…as someone who died after self-destructing and taking out a whole continent with you, aren’t you similar to that Demon King?”

How many times have we rehashed these stories?

As Demon King of the North, I was the strongest among all the Demon Kings with the highest MP to boot. Yet, I had lost because of a woman.

That Hero sure knows how to hit us at our critical weak points.

Aahh, to be honest, it was so miserable I nearly cried. I wanted to die again.

“Speaking of which, looks like we will be getting a new teacher tomorrow. Sugita-sensei is about to leave for maternity leave soon.

“I guess, but whoever that new teacher is really has nothing to do with us,”

Yuri, who could read the atmosphere tried to change the subject. Only to be counterattacked by Maki who could not read the air at all.

Still, what Maki said was right.

How much time do we have in this place?

Is it alright for us to keep living like this?

Each of us harboured these questions in our hearts, but none of us dare give voice to them.

I have lived for such a long time, yet, it still surprises me to not be able to answer them.

 

[Gumihou: There are some repeats, but I try not to let them overlap too much]

 

[1] Filling in the ‘Unspoken’. Often, when it comes to Japanese novels, the translation might be a bit lacking since the author deliberately chooses to use fewer words and let the reader fill in the blanks through a preset cultural understanding.

[2] Hanpen – Triangular fish paste

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanpen

[3] Mochi pouch – Mochi stuffed in tofu pouch. Also known as Mochikinchaku, with ‘kinchaku’ meaning cloth pouch for carrying small items.

https://www.oishi-washoku-recipes.com/mochi-kinchaku

[4] Ganmodoki – Fried tofu dumplings with julienned vegetables.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ganmodoki

 

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Hamster

    It’s okay to repeat any paragraph with daicon in it. That’s my favorite part of Oden.

    1. Gumihou

      Oooh, me too. I have all the ingredients to make oden but white radish. Hence why we are not allowed to have it yet. Lol

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