Karma – 02

Chapter 2 – Within a Forest


“Ugh…”

The sensation of the ground and the stench of summer grass open shook me awake.

“… What?”

Scanning my surroundings, all I saw were trees. Grass. A vast sky.

“Huh?”

I couldn’t make heads or tails of what was going on.
Just a second ago, I was inside the ninja mansion playing Sengoku Online…
And now, I was outside… collapsed, in the middle of a forest?
My village was fairly rural, so further down towards to the mountains one could find many places quite this wild…

“Even I wouldn’t go outside still wearing my ninja outfit.”

Right, weren’t these clothes I was wearing during the show we held for sword battle? All of my outfit was exactly as I had left after having taken off the the headband and the hood.

“I haven’t been kidnapped, have I? But then again, they wouldn’t just leave me alone outside without tying me up… Ah! My phone!”

I had just realized something incredibly important: the phone that had just been in my hand was nowhere to be seen.

“Ugh, all my personal information… And if my Sengoku Online account gets stolen, that’ll be the end of me!”

I better hurry back home and first thing get that phone frozen, I thought, when I heard a ding.

“Eh?”

A familiar sound. The ding of receiving a message.

“Huh, am I hearing things? But my phone’s nowhere to be seen—” A ‘message received’ window popped up before my eyes.

It was without a doubt the front screen of my smartphone, semi-transparent, floating in the air.

“Wha…”

As I stood lost for words, the message on that screen opened itself.

‘Dear Kagura-sama:
Though this may come as quite the surprise, you are now in a different world from the Earth where you once lived. This is not Japan but Falyias, an alternative world as you might call it.’

“Not only is this transparency hard to read but the message lacks an ounce of concern for my wellbeing! And what’s with this cringe chuuni setting! Straight out of a notebook of delusional fantasies that even the most angsty nerd would keep locked away.”1

“Not only is this transparency hard to read but the message lacks an ounce of concern for my wellbeing! And what’s with this cringe chuuni setting! Straight out of a notebook of delusional fantasies that even the most angsty nerd would keep locked away.”

‘Even if you put it that way, this is your reality now, delusional as it may be.’

“Responses come in real-time?! A chat client?!” I no longer knew what was going on anymore.

‘For starters, as Falyias’s overseer, I would like to offer my sincerest apologies. This sequence of events was truly just an unfortunate coincidence, and the fault indirectly lies with this world’s side.’

“…And?”

Thinking things through, even if supposing one did have the technology to create this air-like window, it wouldn’t be anyone in out in a forest like this in the middle of nowhere. Something definitely was abnormal about the situation. If that was the case, then gathering information was top priority.

‘Originally this world, Falyias, existed on the same wavelength as yours on practically the same phase. But just as your world proceed down the path of science, Falyias proceeded down the path of magic.’

“I see I see.”

‘… But constant use of magic and sorcery by humans and monsters slowly began to exhaust the mana supply of the world… and we were but a hair’s breath from complete destruction.’

“Mana?”

‘The basis of magic and sorcery, a type of energy present throughout the world. You could even call it the force through which the world exists as the world in reality.’

“And if depleted, what would happen?”

‘The power for existence itself would be depleted. It would be as if the world called Falyias had never existed in the first place.’

“… And don’t tell me I’m to do something about it? Talk about cliché summoning…”

‘You are mistaken, everything has already been taken care of.’

“What?!” I yelled. If everything has been taken care of, then just send me back already. Why even explain?

‘To be exact, the fact that you are here in this world is the very proof that everything is proceeding far better than we could have imagined.’

Wait, that makes even less sense.

‘I wrote earlier that the two worlds exist on closely related phases… But precisely because of how close, as if being pulled in by a magnet, Falyias drew ever closer to the mana-abundant Earth.’

“But mana seems like something so out of fantasy. I wouldn’t have thought that Earth would have any.”

‘The structure of your world’s reality do not allow magic to manifest itself given the way that things shook out. With mana having no way to be used much less to show traces of its existence, it began to build as time flowed forward. So much so in fact as to have adverse effects on your world in much the same way as its deficiency has had on this one.’

“So you’re telling me to bring your dangerously barren world together with my dangerously abundant world… to do something about this mana situation?”

‘Should the worlds be left to the whims of the forces of attraction, forget salvation, it would be a one-way trip set straight for destruction… Thus, your world’s overseer and I decided to each designate a part of reality as a point of contact through which to allow mana to trickle over, however…’

“However?” I had a bad feeling about this.

‘… All the conditions for said point of contact aligned on you… Kagura-san, it has been decided that you are to be byway through which mana will flow from Earth to Falyias.’

“What the heck is this!!”

‘M-my humblest apologies.’

“Precisely, on, me… You mean I can’t return home?”

‘At the present time, it is impossible considering the current violence of the influx of mana through you… But in approximately a thousand years, it should be possible.’

“A thousand years?! Not even the smallest speck of dust of my dead body will remain!”

‘Ah, that’s right. You now have essentially eternal youth due to the influx of mana. Nevermind 1000 years, you may even live to be 10000.’

“……”

‘Well, uh, how about this! I’ve taken the data from the device your hand was in physical contact with when you came over… your smartphone, and have created a pretty faithful copy of your Sengoku Online profile. With that, I thought you’d be able to acclimatize smoothly to life over here!’

“Wait? My Sengoku Online profile?”

‘That’s right. As your character’s name was the same and appearance already similar, it was but a simple task. Take it as a freebie.’

“Even if you say that… Well, if it’s all it does is help me to acclimatize then sure… Besides, wouldn’t be an angsty teen’s chuuni fantasy without it.”

‘No doubts or lingering regrets?’

“Well… I no longer have family there anymore after all. If you say I can’t return, then I’ll just move on looking forward—”

“Eeeeeeeek!” came a sudden scream interrupting us. It was a female voice from the middle of the forest. Yup, definitely textbook chuuni.

“So I guess this is where I go save her…?”

‘I merely oversee. It is not my place to tell you what to do. But, given your stats, it should pose you no challenge.’

“Alright, alright, I get it. I’ll get on it. Wouldn’t want this leaving me with nightmares…”

‘Incidentally, your skills can be used in the same manner as before, so… good luck… I cannot interfere anymore, so I doubt that we will be in touch.’

“Hey! Wait-”

With a click, the message’s window closed. What an irresponsible bloke.

“Sigh… He mentioned I could use skills right… Lemme see, Edit Skills… Woah.”

My phone’s screen popped up again, this time displaying the skill menu from Sengoku Online.

“Let me go with the ‘Trash Mobs’ preset for now.”

All the skills I had entered into ‘Trash Mobs’ were still as I had left them.

Selecting it, “Ohh, my body feels light. Looks like the movement effects of Gust are working.”

Gust, Fleet-Footed, Master Evasion, Critical Strike, Triple Strike, Surprise Attack, Fire Breath, Master Counter, Stealth, Dual Wielding.

I could feel the notifications of each skill being set steadily roll into my head.

Though there was still much to think over, I put those aside for the moment and set my sights on clearing this upcoming event.


1 The actual phrasing here is just chuuni setting ignoring the last sentence. Chuunibyou is a term now is used to describe those that mistakenly believe themselves in possession of magical powers or special attributes. Second-year middle school syndrome.


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