|Writer: 日日日 (Akira)|
|Location: SS Dome Event Hall (Waiting room)|
|(No, if I use ‘that’, I can turn the table on them...? But how do I use it?
An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth―that can’t be the right answer.
And with just a wrong step, what I do will result in all the darkness of the idol industry... no, of the whole entertainment business to surface.
The ideals and dreams we’ve longed and aimed for will disappear.
Can I really shoulder that burden? I’ll have satisfaction, but what else?
There must be something else; a future where Akehoshi, everyone, can smile...
The video happened. We can’t rewind time. We can’t erase the past...
This is probably something we, and especially Akehoshi, have to deal with sooner or later.
But does it have to be now?)
|Umm, Hidaka-kun, I thought you might have some idea...
This might be an incredibly rude question, but just how much truth was in that stream?
It’ll change how we deal with this situation. If it was all a shameless lie, we can continue to stand dignified. But if even a bit of it was true...
We’ll be shouldering part of the sin,
by hiding and falsifying the truth for the sake of a comrade.
I don’t know if that would be the right move or not, but...
If not doing that would result in losing Akehoshi-kun’s smile forever, I want to do it. I want to save my friend even if it means becoming a villain.
|The ultimate choice, huh... To save a friend, or to stay an honorable idol. I would prefer that these two futures aren’t exclusive too, but...
I think we’ll eventually be forced to make that difficult choice.
|You know... It’s fine. You can cut me off if things are really beyond saving.
You’re all so kind, so it might not cross your minds at all.
But you guys should be able to insist that you’ve been deceived by a criminal’s son and forced to go along with his wrongdoing.
If those choices mean we all have to lose something, then I’d rather offer myself up.
|Don’t be stupid. We’re on the side of justice. We’ve got to let them have it, whoever was using this petty scheme to avoid facing us properly as idols.
We have to take down those evils. Step on them, and laugh to the heavens as they roll beneath our feet.
That’s more like us, and that’ll allow us to advance forward without sacrificing anyone, right?
Don’t give up, Akehoshi. There’s got to be something. A solution.
|But... I actually don’t know.
What sort of person Dad really was.
He was like a radiant star to me. He was my idol...
My very first memory was of me singing while holding hands with Dad and Mom that I love...
Dad was always so busy, so he was rarely home. But if I just switched the TV on, I’d find him smiling there.
Watching him with Mom was the most blissful time of my everyday.
Apparently, as a child, I had no idea how distant the world beyond the TV actually was, and kept reaching out my hands and nuzzling up against the screen.
When Dad came home once in a while, I’d be jumping for joy, running up to him for a hug... and Dad would happily lift me up and swing me around.
Then we’d sing together. Watching us would be Mom and Daikichi, clapping hands, jumping up and down...
We’d hold a small live of just us family.
But one day, Dad wouldn’t come home no matter how long we waited. It was my birthday, and Dad promised he would come.
Mom already prepared my share, Dad’s share, and Daikichi’s share of dinner, and all we had to do was wait.
Maybe his job got extended, we thought, so we turned on the TV like usual. To see if Dad was in any of the live music shows.
But what was airing was an emergency news.
With a pale face, a news announcer reported... something we couldn’t comprehend――
That Dad killed someone while on stage.
|Kil―... M-Murder!? Tha-That’s a lie... right?
No. You’re wrong, Akehoshi-kun. It was an accident.
Since Saegusa-kun seemed so insistent to bring up your dad during our joint interview, I got curious and researched about it too.
Official record is that it was an accident. In the live show of Akehoshi-kun’s dad, who was a super idol of the time, a crazed fan was pushing themself through the crowd――
They tried to get upstage, but got into a dispute and fell on their own... Apparently, they hit a bad place and they died from that.
Your dad didn’t even push them or anything, Akehoshi-kun.
It was just an unfortunate accident... He wasn’t even charged for it. Wasn’t what you saw a misinformation from a news channel who jumped at the wrong conclusion too soon?
|Maybe. But that was just the start of it.
They investigated my dad thoroughly after that... and many atrocities were brought to light. I don’t believe it even now, but...
Illegal donation and bribery. Physical abuse towards colleagues... With one evidence after another being brought to light, Dad was arrested. As a criminal.
The worst idol in history―that’s what the mass called him.