Hello everyone. This is Yamagata Ishio. I thus deliver “Tatakau Shisho to Kuroari no Meikyuu” to you. It came out fast, and we’re now at the third installment of the “Tatakau Shisho” series. Since I’ll keep going, let me be in your care.
Allow me to tell you a somewhat useless story.
I think it was about a year ago. I was heading back home from the night shift of my part-time job at around 1:00 AM. That starry night was cold enough to make my hands shiver despite wearing gloves.
At times like these, I have to be grateful for the convenience of vending machines – or rather that of civilization. Immediately after getting off the train, while thinking about stuff like “should I get coffee or green tea? No no, at times like these corn pottage or oden and such warm up your body more”, 120 yen were inserted from my wallet into the vending machine.
At that instant, my eyes were caught on one item.
“Sweet red-bean soup”
It really is a great invention. When it arrived here it was said to be an evil product, but now it was simply an item in the vending machine’s lineup. The only problem was the word written underneath it.
What a good joke – thinking this, I pressed the button. Of course, I acted like this because I thought the inscription was wrong.
When I took the sweet red-bean soup that fell out, I muttered to myself,
“How come it’s actually cold?”
When I arrived back home, I dumped the can’s contents into a pot, boiled it and then drank it. It wasn’t really good.
During this year’s summer, when I passed by that vending machine, I found out that sweet red-bean soup was still there. Normally thinking its notation should have changed to “wa~rm”, but unfortunately nothing like that happened, and the sweet red-bean soup was still enshrined above “co~ld”.
I see. That is the idea of drinking cold sweet red-bean soup in the summer. What a new sensation. I bought it without hesitation.
It was horrible.
Yesterday, when I saw that vending machine once more, the sweet red-bean soup was gone.
Just what happened to it? Was it the owner’s carelessness? Was there some other deep reason? Perhaps something bad was involved? What am I, after spending 240 yen for that incomprehensible taste two times already, supposed to do?
But with this, I was able to tell a story in the afterword. Besides, I can’t deny the possibility of me using this experience as an idea for a novel one day.
So it was a good thing. It was good… probably. Telling this to myself, I left the vending machine.
This time I was also able to complete the book due to the help of various people. There’s Maeshima Shigeki-sama who drew the beautiful illustrations, the editor who gave me advice, everyone in the editorial department backing me up, and my family who have supported me my whole life; I use this opportunity to thank you all.
Let us meet again in my next work. Thank you very much.