Disorientated Feelings (Part 27)

As the days pass by, places that I remember during my childhood days, to recent as two years ago, has changed a lot: from the roads to the vehicles. Empty plots of land or poorly maintained buildings had sparkling new buildings in their place. I still keep in contact with my university friends and some of my middle and high school friends. As for my friends from primary school, I've lost contact with them: the well known social networking sites we know didn't exist until I was in high school, and nobody that I knew back then, except the grown-ups, has a mobile phone with them.

My eldest child is about to enter kindergarten, so the house is chaotic. I don't know what my children knows, but they are able to identify me and Itsuki as their parents. According to Saeko, my uncle would drop by at random when I'm not around to "examine" my children. Is he checking if they had inherited something abnormal from their parents? I roughly know the possibilities on my husband's side, but me? I've only heard that, with the permission of my mother, I was a test subject of one of his many projects that happened shortly after I was born. There was no mention of this or had any errors on my birth certificate. I am unhappy that he did something to me and nobody is telling me what it was. With the exception of my feelings, there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with my body, and it's functioning just like any other female body. Did he modify the way I think or behave? I could be doing what he wants me to, and not know it. I too noticed that I was able to hide my actual feelings somewhat or remain calm in otherwise stressful conditions.

The problem is that I can't release these unexpressed feelings by myself. The price for releasing them is to have me fall in love with any guy I land on top of (who is not blood related and is around the same age as me) and allow him to make me feel aroused later on to have me actually be able to release those trapped feelings. I know it sounds like I could pick anyone l like and deliberately bump into him, but I tripped as I left my classroom, and Itsuki happens to be one of the random guys who just happens to brake my fall. I don't like to feel aroused as it makes me unable to think properly and I would mindlessly agree to anyone when I'm in that state. (Yes, I can remember what happened at that time even though I couldn't think as it happened.) It also unlocked something in my mind that forces me to keep seeing him or hear his voice or I'll go crazy and be depressed. My body failed to recognize Saeko as the female version of my boyfriend, so I did become depressed for not seeing the male version because of this stupid curse even though I knew otherwise. Me knowing this is an obvious sign that my mind does not match my external expressions. I am forced by my own body to love him just because I accidentally bumped into him. On top of that, I was forced to behave as though I actually do. Yes, I am stuck to seeing him for the rest of my life like seeing the faces of my family members. To regain my sanity, I had to force myself to return to my original dimension where Itsuki is a guy. Wasn't easy, considering my state of mind.

To begin with, I never liked Itsuki as he wasn't interesting, has very low grades, poor family (my family would have been rich if I didn't have so many siblings), or have connections with anyone rich and/or famous. I actually liked one of the guys back in high school, but I accidentally brainwashed myself to only like Itsuki. I had to make long-distance calls to Itsuki regularly during my university so that I'm able to study. I don't care what the topic was. A call lasting a few seconds with only him saying "hi" and me not saying anything is enough to keep my sanity. Itsuki knows via my uncle that I had to do this, but he doesn't mind as he told me that no other girl would fall in love with him anyway. I don't love him, but I'm forced to.

How did I know that my own actions were not to my will? It's hard to say as it started before I even knew what was going on at the beginning of my life. It started on the night of my first day in high school: I entered my uncle's office while I caught him looking through a box with unreadable German text that had a picture of my mother dating not long before I was born. I had more time to look at the contents as he didn't recognize my new hairstyle and uniform, until I spoke. That was when he rushed to packed everything. Obviously, I am involved, looking at the contents and his reaction to me seeing it.

My relation with him is between love-hate relation. I like him for being so kind to my family and being a father-like figure more than my own dad, but hate him for using me as an experiment subject, causing my current life to be completely different from what it should have been. I don't know what it could have been, because I am living the altered life since birth, and I don't know what exactly he did to me. I even questioned if the beautiful lady I always see in the mirror is even me. Did he try to make my life perfect from my appearance to my behavior? Well, my mind is the only thing he didn't change. That's how I know that my body feels as though it's functioning differently from what I though it should do. I'm even scared of myself.

I know I've said that I've never liked Itsuki, but as time passed, I've grown to like him out of my own will, partly because I am forced to see him, and him treating me well. He's quite good, just that his grades in school don't reflect that. Saeko, Itsuki's other self, is actually better than me in many ways.

Anyway, I looked through the company archives for anything that might interest me. I had not checked what happened to the results to the programming convention that I suggested to my uncle (the same man who did stuff to me) when I had just entered high school. It's an event hosted by many well known companies to see the abilities of the contestants. Although there is a ranking system that says who is the best among everyone, the criteria for being hired is based on their ability and the time it takes to be completed. Though not mentioned, preparation, external help, and cheating is also considered. Since there are many companies involved, the chances of being employed to any company is quite high, candidates who were picked by more than one company can choose which one to go to. Anyways, the two people my uncle (he's the director of the Hatsuya Institute) picked is my current husband, and someone called Kenneth Tan who is slightly older. Hm? An odd mix for a name. He (or someone in the family) is likely to be an immigrant of a country where English is widely spoken, looking at how good he wrote his essay to enter the competition. However, his death caused some weird happenings here with a friend he met via their fathers with a girl called Haruna Kobayashi. I called Saeko if she knows about it as she was in the same school and also knows everything that my husband knows.

Saeko: "I have memories of her as my friend prior to that happening in the other dimension, but it conflicts of what I went through as Itsuki. I can't say how reliable they are as I myself never went through those events prior to that day."

Me: "Just send them to me. I think it would be more accurate for me to read them than you saying it. Use a mobile device or something descreet that doesn't limit your movement."

Saeko was reluctant because plugging anything into herself means that the item can't be removed unless it's safe to do so or done by someone else. She was taking care of my children at the time I called. I can hear them in the background. Saeko hung up the phone, but called me back on an another.

Saeko: "Okay, I am using the phone you called me on to send the data. Hurry up before your children sees me like this. I'm already starting to feel uncomfortable."

Although Saeko's discomfort is the least of my concerns, but I don't want my children to have any weird ideas out of this.

Me: "Come up with something, like watching TV or cooking dinner. The transfer rate would improve if you are relaxed."

Saeko: "How can I be relaxed if this thing is making me feel uneasy? I can't sit down with..."

I ended the call. I did not ask for anything more than you sending me the information. She wouldn't be able to interrupt the transfer on her end anyway.

From the information that Saeko sent me, this Kenneth Tan was from the country my siblings and my cousin (Aiko Hirano, not the Nanami Fujibayashi I've been mentioning a lot lately) went to back in 2005. She was Saeko's classmate at the Mihara Academy. The homeroom teacher had brought to the class an odd-looking doll from his (then) recent trip to South America. I saw Haruna wishing for something before she fainted, with her body frozen stiff somehow that people questioned if she was even still alive as she showed no reaction. They couldn't even bend her body joints. During the brain scan some time later, it turns out that she's as cautious as before her body froze up, but is only able to see, hear, feel, and think. She can't move or reply even if she wanted to unless they can read her mind. That means that she was suffering from boredom in that 1-bed ward room with, apart from the hospital staff, hardly anyone visiting her. Nobody could tell if she heard and understood what people had talked to her, as she can't respond. However, it seems that she could suddenly move again on the day after this Kenneth Tan childhood friend of hers was involved in a horrific accident involving a taxi and a speeding truck at an intersection. Witnesses noticed that there was bright flashing green light from inside the taxi just before the collision. He even made a blog post less than a month after he had supposedly died, which attracted a lot of media attention. According to his father, the administrators of the site the blog is hosted at, privately told him that the post was not scheduled, and came form the general area where Haruna lived, but the post mentions things and is written in a style that only the deceased in question is able to write.

Wait, flashing green light? Isn't that what I saw when I was staying with my cousin Nanami and my great-grandmother some years ago? Since then, she showed some physic abilities and summoning objects from anywhere without making a hole or breaking anything in-between. I know, because I was one of the first things she summoned: from where I was, I was dragged back at high speed out of the blue and went through things that are usually not possible to penetrate through. Oddly enough, the food and drinks I was having at that time came along with me, with nothing spilled out despite having nothing to prevent the spillage. I was confused as to was was going on as it happened, and I don't know if others saw me. I am scared if she were to suddenly summon me while I'm in the middle of something as I am one of the few people she knows well. Before Nanami gained consciousness from the effects of that green light, I managed to sneak away realistic replicas of herself and her dead family members that suddenly appeared in the living room. I had to hide them from her somewhere while waiting for Saeko to bring them to the Powell Institute nearby before Nanami sees them and thinks they are real. After some research, Saeko said that they are not actual bodies and only react if you do something to it like poking its eye or make them feel aroused. Besides that, they are just lifeless dolls that could easily be mistaken for an actual person. Saeko recalls seeing that doll at least three times:
  1. During that homeroom session with Haruna
  2. Inside the bedroom, while working (as Itsuki) on a device that allows transferring to your counterpart of a different dimension. Noticed it while about to head to bed, but was too sleepy to do anything about it
  3. In the computer clubroom at Kamisugi High School (上杉高校). She saw it on the first day back from spring vacation as a second year-student. Since she knows about the doll more and had experienced what it did to her, she hid it in a box and completely forgot about it, even after she graduated from there.
Although she doesn't know how the doll ended up with Nanami after graduating, she did note that Nanami drops by the club quite frequently, despite not being a member, during Saeko's third year there to meet a member called Takuya who is a childhood friend and had went to the same middle school. That leaves 3 possibilities:
  1. the doll went to her out of interest
  2. Takuya went to the school for some reason, saw the box that contained the doll, and used/gave the doll on/to Nanami
  3. Saeko's juniors wanted to return her things and was uncontactable, but somehow discovered connections with Nanami (via Itsuki and me?) and send it to her
As I went to check what caused the doll to appear in Saeko's possession, I noticed that she was very emotional during the graduation ceremony of the third years a month earlier even though it was not her own: giving a speech, sat through the entire ceremony, called one of the graduates, talked for a while before leaving, cried for a bit before Itsuki appeared, and... WHAT AM I DOING THERE? Did Saeko made this up? Because I remember clearly that I have never stepped into Kamisugi High at all. The closest I've been around there is the Powell Institute headquarters (I'm surprised Saeko founded it), and Nanami's house that are located in the same town the school is in. I had to ask what I was doing inside the school.

Saeko: "Are you done yet? Why did you hang up on me? I am starting to see... flashes of Takagi-senpai's graduation day."

You can see what I'm accessing? Well, it is your memories. And who's this Takagi? The graduating girl I saw Saeko crying at? She didn't explain.

Me: "Oh, about your memories of a particular graduation day... what was I doing there? It's not quite far from my cousin Nanami's house, but I don't recall stepping into the school."

I'm surprised that I was able to say that calmly, considering what was on my mind a while ago.

Saeko: "Well... you claimed that... both of your children are... already in primary school but warned us about.... hnnn... something that had just happened some weeks earlier involving Hatsuyaaaa.... In-institute and its major rival company. The one where I.... was cut into pieces..... by their thugs. You wouldn't want to see a picture.... of me of that day: you would be...... disturbed or horrified if...... you do."

Saeko being in pieces so horrifying that I would be disturbed if I saw it? She seemed fine the last I saw her, and that was long after the incident happened.

Me: "Saeko? Are you all right? You sounded like you had ran for quite some distance even though you sounded fine barely a few minutes ago."

Saeko: "I... am?"

What? You didn't even notice your own difficulty in talking?

Saeko: "Oh, it's what... Itsuki... make me... feel during data... transmission. It seemed... like a... few frames were ski... pped from my point... of view and I'm... mysteriously feeling relaxed... and increasingly happy when... it takes place for... as long... as possible. Do... I sound broken... to you, or is... there a pro... blem with the... phone? Sorry. I... had to ask."

Me: "I'm afraid it's you since I could hear the TV my children are watching during the intermittent pause in the middle of your speech. Never mind about the data. I would eventually find out about it as proven by the future me in the past."

Itsuki, what have you done with this android-like female clone of yourself? You seem to like to make it annoyed, but your original mind is in it!

Saeko: "Uh... oh. What did... he do to... me while I was.... asleep? I should go... now... before...."

It seemed that Saeko hung up the phone by herself. Saeko, I don't know whether to blame you, my uncle, myself, or that odd looking doll for having Itsuki as I first met to become a girl in an another dimension (and dragging me along) and then again to clone yourself. I was involved in making the machine that cloned her, and there's a condition written somewhere near the machine that whoever gets cloned would become a permanent test subject for the Hatusya Institute, which is the Saeko I spoke to earlier. Despite pay being a lot higher than that of a lawyer, she didn't like it as she has went through hell as she was forced to put on a swimsuit that can't be removed in anyway (read: can't use the toilet or make herself happy) that made her somewhat like an android and gave her immortality and should have died at least 4 times by now, but her immortality didn't allow her even if she wanted to. The most recent was her trying to commit suicide by jumping off a very tall building out of frustration that her age and maturity is stuck at 15 years of age and has to repeat high school over and over (as part of her task given by Hatsuya to observe the studying environments and trends among students over time) despite scoring top grades, and people doing inhumane things to her and all the horrors she have to go through as part of her job. Even her own body belongs to the Hatsuya Institute, so she had limited freedom despite being invincible. She's given a break by the director "to take care of my precious niece's children" until "they know how to do things themselves", with the niece in question being me.

With me being in charge with the entire branch, I was given the most grand office that is larger than than my bedroom at my parent's house. I don't feel easy being in the large office or being given high level of respect. I could bring my children out or choose to help my workers, but I hardly know my own children other than them coming out of me. (How did I make them inside me?) You don't hear me mentioning their name or gender because I really don't know and I have bad memory for people's names like how I didn't know my own date of birth until I turned 16.

Male visitor: "Madam Hisakawa?"

Like that name I just heard being mentioned outside my office.

Me: "I don't know anyone who has Hisakawa in their names besides my boyfriend"

and he could be talking to someone at the office desks just outside my office. Wait, did I say something out loud?

Female staff: "Sorry, our boss doesn't seem to realize that she had married her boyfriend, so you have to call her by something she recognizes like her maiden or given name."

I'm married? When was that? What's going on outside? Why is the staff talking to the guest in an another language that I could understand?

Male visitor: "Okay then. YO! Kotomi baby! What' cha doin' in there?"

Although that's a rather informal way of greeting people in an office environment, I now realized that he was calling me. I know he can't be local as he effortlessly pronounced words with sounds that are outside my national language.

Part 26 | Part 28


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