Haruka's Diary
Chasing After Rainbows: January 2014

15 January 2014

Alternate Dimension special: Riding the Train With Kids (Part 2)

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We finally arrived at the station in the capital. The tickets for the kids were enough to cover the whole trip , but not for mine. I alerted the kids about this before we head to the ticket barrier.

Me: "Hold on there! Remember that I bought a ticket that isn't enough for the trip? Watch what happens when I try to use the ticket, and don't enter through the ticket barrier before me or I can't show you something in this paid area."

I inserted the ticket into the barrier where it closed on me as it makes beeping sounds that were different from the people who managed to go through. There was also a red light, but I'm not sure if the kids could see that. The staff who was at the window between the gates was looking at me.

Me: "And that is what happens. If you were to look over there, there is a machine similar to where we bought our tickets from, but it is for paying off the difference between what I paid and what I am supposed to be paying. Remember that this is only in Japan. Elsewhere, you definitely should be paying the full fare or a "penalty fee", which is many times more than what you would have paid for the actual fare.  Later, I will show you a card where you don't have to keep buying a new ticket or worry about the fare."

We walked towards the fare adjustment machines. There was a queue, but being spread across different machines means we didn't need to wait for long. At the machine, I inserted the ticket into the slot, and the fare to pay appears on the screen. (Fare paid and station it was bought at is printed on the ticket itself.) On the machine, arrows indicating for coins, notes, and the cancel button were flashing together at the same time. The kids also noticed that the arrow indicating for the ticket was still flashing despite me having already inserted one, with the size of the slot itself being as wide as a card.

Me: "If you have the ticket I mentioned earlier, you could use that as a way to pay, or use that ticket on this machine when you have insufficient balance. But for now, let's pay with the cash I have."

I took out the coins and notes on me, though I put some of those back after realizing that the coins I had already out is more than enough. I don't know why I carry so much money on me, but with how much money I have, it doesn't matter if I loose them. Though, I wouldn't like to loose money at all.

Me: "Now we had broken down the large note, we can use any amount of the smaller denomination coins to pay. Only a maximum of two 500 yen coins could be used, and the 1 and 5 yen coins can't be used. I would advice you to use as much of the smallest denomination the machine accepts, which is the 10 yen coin, so you would have fewer number of coins on you. Also, psychologically, you would tend to use more of the higher denominated notes where, if you have insufficient of, are likely to use the notes more than the lower denominated coins despite having enough. You can pay more than what they ask you for as. like the ticket machine, would give you change too. Don't be afraid to use a 10,000 yen note, even if you are just 10 yen short of paying the balance."

I inserted the coins I have into the coin slot without really paying attention to what denomination they were, stopping only when I see that I had paid enough. The 1 and 5 yen coins the machine doesn't accept that I had inserted without looking came out immediately at the coin tray meant for giving out change. I did not collect those coins until the machine gave me change for the amount that the machine did accept. At the same time, the machine dispensed a new ticket for only to get out of the paid area of this specific station I am at.

Me: "If the machine breaks down, or if there isn't a machine like this around, you can approach the staff at that counter between the ticket barriers."

Now that we are out of the station, the kids got excited to see so many people and tall buildings at a place, with more seemingly further down. We went to eat as we were happy. However, this place is not our final destination, and would have to continue to the subway to get there. The concept is the same, but stations between each other are closer, more likely to be underground, and serve only within the city limits and some areas bordering it.

Of course, we have to eventually make our way back home. They have a curfew set by their parents, but if they are aware that I am with them, that curfew is not in effect with no other restrictions other than, in Kotomi's words, "make sure they are not sleepy and done their homework if they have school the following day". What they are unaware of is that I can modify the children's mind and mood to feel as if they have slept, and do their homework that seem that they did it in an instant.

It's in the children's genetics that lets me do this that's from the result of their mother being modified at birth, which even though the mother doesn't have it herself, it does affect the children she produces, and the children of those children, and so on... It's almost like having a virus being spread across generations.

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中野区, 東京都, Japan
帰国子女 英語能力は堪能。趣味はアニメや漫画やプログラムコードを編集。通常、あたしの小説を英語で書いてです。Grew up abroad &travelled to different countries. I write my own fictional novel on my blog.