Glances at Saki, she says, “Which is very unlike SOMEONE ELSE’S HOUSE.” Saki’s friends angrily say that Azumi [guesswork from 明日美] is nitpicking. They tell Saki not to mind her for she only wants to show off that’s all. Saki angrily mutters that she doesn’t mind.. Her family is staying at a rundown neighborhood. When she was staying here when she was young, she doesn’t think that there is any problem with it but right now, thinking of it, it is really humiliating because for her to live in this kind of place, she cannot call out to her friends to hang out there. Just then, a young boy, together with friends, calls out to Saki and if junior class is dismissed. Saki calls him Itsuki [guesswork from 樹] not to call her Saki but rather, he should call her sister, okay. Itsuki happily says that he and his friends are going to play hide and seek so she also come and play, okay. He tells her that anyway, she isn’t doing anything. Irked that here he goes again, Saki shouts hide and seek, is he kidding for she is— And soon, she ends up joining the hide and seek game. Hiding at some grassy area, Saki thinks that she also wants to stay at a beautiful house and have a Western-style courtyard. “It is good if I can stay in such an amazing place...
...If that is really no good, then at least, stay at a place where people won’t laugh at.. *notices Itsuki hiding in front of her behind some trash cans* That guy is really stupid to death. Hiding in a place where he can be found out in a short while.” Someone is calling out, ‘”One- Two-” Saki thinks that it has started and very good, everyone is hiding. Then, she becomes surprised for everyone who joined the game are hiding so who is the oni who’ll come to look for them. Saki is startled when someone passes by her. Thinking that she’ll be found out, she quickly closed her eyes and kept quiet. Then, she opens her eyes again when nothing happened. The game is interrupted when Saki’s mother claps her hands and calls out that it is enough, time to go home and eat, everyone go home now. Saki turns to the trash cans and tells Itsuki that they go back. She is surprised that no one is there. In section 1-A, everyone is talking about Saki’s younger brother had gone missing and he must have been kidnapped. Azumi says that it is that neighborhood and in that kind of old neighborhood, the public safety is definitely not good. “Even if you beat me to death, I won’t live in that kind of place.” As Saki’s friends try to comfort her, Saki thinks that they did everything to look for Itsuki but they still couldn’t find him. “He is obviously in front of me, and I can see him.. *recalls smiling Itsuki* It is good if I had always kept an eye at him!!”
While walking home after school, she notices some kids playing jakenpon to decide on who is the oni before going to play hide and seek. Saki wonders who the oni was at that time. She looks surprised then she quickly runs off. Calling Itsuki’s friends to ask them, they tell her that they didn’t know who the oni was. Saki finds this strange for how come no one remembers who the oni is, and who was the one who wanted to play hide and seek. The administrator of the building asks if it is Onigo-sama [literally means demon child] and it is possible that Itsuki was taken by Onigo-sama. He explains that no long ago, he recalls that a child went missing in this place and because of that, he heard that everywhere nearby, the family would establish a small shrine to pray. Saki couldn’t believe this for she never heard that there is that kind of small shrine around here. Saki returns home to see her mother preparing some missing posters for Itsuki. She tells her mother that if they did not live in this kind of neighborhood then this wouldn’t have happened. Her mother looks at her and says that both Saki and Itsuki were born and grew up in this place. Besides, she really likes this place. Her mother tells her not to be like that and just wait for Itsuki to come back. She says that it is fine for Saki to smile and welcome Itsuki. Saki wipes her tears and says okay.
To her surprise, her mother says that when Saki was young, this type of thing also happened. At that time, Saki didn’t return home the whole night and on the second day, she came back. When she asked her where she went, Saki answered her that she played hide and seek, and then she would even shout out that she’s amazing for no one was able to find her. Saki thinks hide and seek, and it might be Onigo-sama. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. It is a few minutes past midnight. At the courtyard, it is already 12:10am. Saki has decided to definitely bring Itsuki back. She takes a deep breath and shouts, “Onigo-sama, let’s play hide and seek together. If..if until dawn you weren’t able to find me, then that means you lose..at that time, you’ll fairly go back inside the shrine.” Everything is quiet. Saki thinks that if Onigo-sama is real, then at that time, the one whom she played hide and seek with is that person. “If everything went smoothly, it is possible that I’ll be able to find Itsuki..” Then, she hears someone saying, “One- Two-” Saki turns around and wonders where the voice came from. Then, the voice continues, “Three.. Four..” Saki becomes nervous and thinks could it be that it is..real.. She quickly runs back to her house and knocks on the door. She calls out to her mother.
Saki turns the door knob and is shocked that the door cannot be opened so what is she to do. She knocks harder and calls out to her mother to quickly get up and open the door!! “Mama..” The voice continues to count, “Eight.. Nine..” Scared Saki thinks that she is calling out loudly yet no one is waking up. “Mama..” Then, the voice says, “Ten-- Are you finished hiding?” Hearing the voice behind her, trembling Saki summons up her courage and look behind. Then, she quickly runs off. She wonders what to do, what to do, she has to hide..in a place where she’ll absolutely won’t be found. Then, she sees the trash can where Itsuki hid. It is already 12:30am. After hiding, Saki thinks that it is alright, she had hidden in a place where it won’t find her.. The full moon shines brightly up the night sky. She thinks that there is no sound at all from outside and perhaps, it has already given up. She takes a peek outside to see a rugged looking girl with messy hair, carrying a doll. She asks, “Are you finished hiding?” Saki sits back in surprise and made a sound. Onigo looks at a trash can and smiles. Saki thinks, no..I beg of you..!! “Papa, Mama..Itsuki..” Onigo pulls up the trash can’s lid and it is empty. Saki looks up and sees Onigo looking at the empty trash can. It turns out that Saki is hiding on the cabinet stand with a blanket over herself. The cabinet is behind the trash cans. Saki looks really scared as Onigo is quietly walking away.
Soon, it is dawn. Saki looks at Onigo and sees her disappear. Saki wonders if that is for real. She removes the blanket and shouts, “I win! (I’ll definitely find that shrine and it is highly possible that Itsuki is inside) This time..it’s my turn to be the oni..!!” Saki starts running all over the place while thinking that she’ll definitely find Itsuki. Then, she seems to have bumped on some construction materials. Saki looks up and sees the small shrine with an open lock. She thinks that it is this place. She opens the door of the shrine and shouts, “Itsuki, are you here!?” She is surprised to see an old Japanese doll inside. And, on the morning of that day, she and Itsuki were found unconscious by the garbage collector in front of the shrine. Itsuki tells his relieved mother and friends that when he woke up, he noticed that he and Saki are sleeping together and he doesn’t know what had happened. Saki looks at their family picture and smiles. Later on, two locks are put on the shrine and some monks prayed to it. Back at school, Azumi is telling others that it is better for the neighborhood to be demolished because for that kind of thing to happen, it is definitely cursed. Saki’s friends say that Azumi is at it again, and tell Saki not to mind it.
To their surprise, Saki laughs and says that it is okay!! Saki thinks that even if she is almost frightened to death by it, but she still really likes that neighborhood because her family is there. Going to her house, Azumi says that Saki is just acting brave and her house is what they call safe since there is added neighborhood security here and it is guarded by a small shrine. A boy calls out to Azumi, his sister, that she’s home. He informs her that everyone will be playing hide and seek in a while so she should come and join them. Azumi says that she cannot refuse him and afterwards, he’ll treat her to some ice cream. And, at some other shrine, the lock opens and reveals an old Japanese doll. Yomi narrates, “If she finds you, it is very possible that she’ll bring you to that side of the world. It is truly a terrifying game. When playing hide and seek, remember to confirm whether you know the person you’re playing with or not. If you run into a game wherein you don’t know who is the oni, then, you better be careful. *someone calls out if they have finished hiding* Ah, at this time, I have to hide because a scary oni is coming. *about to hide behind the curtains* This lesson is up to here, see you again in the next class.”
Comment: Somehow I think those two are two different dolls based on their kimono’s design. Those shrines with dolls are probably scattered all over the place and will come out when some kids are going to play hide and seek. Researching this a bit, it seems that in Japan, there is a ‘play hide and seek alone’. They use some ritual to call some spirit to go into a doll to play hide and seek with. It has a lot of rules and stuff like one has to be alone, it can only be played at a limited time or the spirit won’t leave the doll especially if it is human-like. Somehow, I think that these dolls are the remains of that game ritual that have gone wrong. Maybe the doll it is carrying is around was its summoner, and now, it cannot resist playing hide and seek with others. I guess Saki survived because she is a good kid. Even if she is annoyed and everything with her younger brother, but she still did what she had do to bring him back. I wonder if she is really brave and determined to get him back or she just didn’t realize from whom she is going to get her brother back. She also realizes that the place where one lives isn’t important but rather the family she is with. ^^ Scans by 离境汉化组
Quote of the day:
It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home. ~ Author Unknown