I also added the footnotes to the last update of this story because I realized I forgot them, h-haha.
Hariyama-san, Center of the World 1
Hariyama-san, Center of the Miracles (Genre: "Medley")
Urban Legend (Secret)
“Lulu. Can I… ask something?”
What is it, Muu?
“That urban legend… I’ve heard it too… Did you know there’s been a ‘sequel’ going around lately?”
“Not quite a sequel… Well, you know how if you meet Kuchisake-onna, you’ll be saved if you yell ‘pomade’? Something like that. But instead of doing something in particular… If you know the story, you won’t meet that urban legend anymore.”
Huh, I didn’t know that. What do you mean?
“Yeah. The story is already over.”
The demon king fell in love with one of the heroes who came to kill him. That heroine also fell in love with the demon king who had killed her allies one after another.
They both faltered, and in the end, neither was able to kill their opponent – and they began to talk to each other.
And so the two of them realized. They ended up realizing. The huge power that enveloped them. The secret of the online game they had been playing–
That from the outset, there had been a scheme built into the online game made by the game maker “Hikarijima”. A particular sound and light pattern within the game slowly stole away their human reason; they could no longer tell the difference between reality and games, and they were being used in a certain country’s military experiment.
The people who realized this were designated “demon kings” by “Hikarijima” and targeted by the players who couldn’t tell the difference between reality and games.
The demon king had realized he could increase the number of people like him, and so he started calling out to them.
“Are you a hero?”
But it had a different meaning than before.
To win them over to the demon king’s side, so as to destroy the maker called Hikarijima.
Over, and over – until the day they crushed “Hikarijima”.
“That’s the story I heard from a friend.”
It suddenly got really unrealistic. The story I heard had to do with the Internet and taking games too far. It had a lot of realistic parts. And… to begin with, I haven’t heard of the game maker Hikarijima, you know?
“Yeah… but you know, I like this story a lot better.”
“…Because it’s unusual.”
“…An urban legend that ends with someone being happy…”
“Even if he is a demon king.”
But did the demon king really become happy?
“…What do you think, Lulu?”
Hm… I think he did, for sure.
I… want him to be happy.
Let’s think about it. How can the demon king really become happy?
And then – this time we’ll spread the rumors. Okay?
And so – today a new legend was born in this town.
The prayers of those who told the story of fear and those who told the story of smiles came together.
And slowly, slowly–
–With a man by the name of Hariyama at the center of the miracles–