Decisive Player & Innocent Player
“W-What do you mean you’re me and I’m you?” Lakshman asked in confusion.
The unknown voice laughed and said “It’s like I said; I am you and you’re me.”
“That’s why I’m asking what you mean! Besides, what is this place? I can’t open my eyes and all!”
“This is the very depths of your mind. Right now it’s dark because you haven’t fully awakened. The fact that you were able to reach this deep is pretty impressive.”
“Why? Is my mind as deep as the ocean?”
At those words, the voice began laughing. Then, after calming down, the voice said “I don’t know because I’m sealed here.”
“Eh? Sealed? What do you mean?”
“I’m not exactly sure, but I know you and I were once and the same. However, at some point, we were split.”
“Split? Are you talking about personalities?”
“Well? Which is it?”
“Mmm…” the voice said in a pondering voice. Then he said “How about we think like this; Decisive Player and Innocent Player.”
“Decisive Player and Innocent Player? What do they mean?” Lakshman asked curiously.
“Decisive Player is the one who stays head strong, determined and makes decisions firmly. An Innocent Player is someone who is always cheerful, happy and nice to everyone. In all living beings, there exists a the Decisive Player and Innocent Player.”
“For example, take Sevedant as an example. As an Innocent Player, he often remains quiet and rarely makes jokes. Then, as a Decisive Player, he makes firm decisions in battle and does what he has to do.”
“Oh. I see what you mean. So which am I and which are you?”
The voice sighed and said “Come on… Isn’t it fairly obvious which you are?”
“Um…” Lakshman said hesitantly.
“You’re the Innocent Player! I’m the Decisive Player!” The voice said firmly.
“O-Oh… I guess that is true since I am always happy, nice and soft…” Lakshman said and sighed at the sudden realisation.
“Not only that. You are also a big idiot!” The voice said in a severe voice.
“Because you are such a stupid idiot who is not aware of the feelings of others.”
“Feels of others? What do you mean?”
“Ondine and Tetra!” The voice suddenly shouted and Lakshman winced.
“A-About them? What is wrong with them?” Lakshman said nervously.
“There’s nothing with them, but in you instead! Why don’t you realise their feelings for you, idiot! When will you wake up to realise their affection for you?!”
“Huh? I’m already aware of their affection for me. I’m also returning that affection like any friend would.”
“No, no, no! Their affection is more that of a friend! When a girl becomes embarrassed, when she becomes overprotective or overaggressive and when she becomes jealous about something, that’s the sign of love. This is all when it concerns a man she loves!”
“Um… What are you getting at?” Lakshman asked slowly in a cautious voice.
The voice sighed and said “Ondine and Tetra… They are in love with you, fool!”
For a moment, there was only silence. Then Lakshman asked “Love? Do you mean like the love between a parent and child?”
The voice suddenly became angry and shouted “No, goddammit! Not that love! This is a very special love that has a lot of meaning, reason and understanding in it! It’s called Romantic Love, not Family Love!”
“W-W-What…?” Lakshman stuttered in shock.
“Romantic Love. Basically it means that they love you, want to always be with you and wants you to be happy. That’s why followed you all the way here in the first place when they could’ve simply stayed home! Those girls want to become your strength and reliance!”
“T-T-T-They… They really… do?”
“Yes…! The girls have been raging at each other so constantly was because they were not able to receive your love. That sparked their rivalry to obtain your affection. Sometimes it gets them confused your good natured petting with romantic petting.”
“S-So I should just stop do that and problem solved, right?”
“No! Don’t do that! You will need these girls in the future! They are the very bond of your life! If you disregard their sincere love today, you will never be happy in the future!”
“I see… All this time I must’ve hurt them without knowing it…” Lakshman said happily.
“Whatever! What is in the past is the past! Now make the effort to change from here on!”
“Right! I will!”
“Don’t just say those sweet and easy words to satisfy me! Tell me what you’re going to first thing in the morning!” The voice demanded seriously.
“Next morning? I… I’ll… um…” Lakshman began and faltered.
He was suddenly feeling embarrassed to say it out loud. He knew what he must do, but he was feeling nervous and embarrassed. Doubts suddenly popped up in his mind about his plan.
Sensing it, the voice sighed and asked “Do you like them? Do you like Ondine and Tetra?”
“Yes. They are good girls. Always supporting and helping me.”
The voice then shouted “Then don’t be so embarrassed! You’re a man!”
“I’m only thirteen years old…” Lakshman said in a small voice.
“So? How’s that going to stop you from confessing your feelings to them?”
The voice sighed and said “A few weeks ago, you were feeling hot when you were only inches away from kissing Ondine when you up. From that experience, your body got very hot and you began to realise how beautiful she and Ondine were.”
Lakshman suddenly became flustered as he remembered those events. He remembered how Marilia explained that it was due to puberty, but it was also because of his feelings.
“Take the decisive action and go with it! That’s what it means to be a Decisive Player! Don’t just always play the role of the Innocent Player, because it won’t always work out!”
“So you’re saying I should be as firm as I always am in fights and battles?”
“Exactly! Don’t just be firm in the face of the energy or a battle. Be decisive in your regular life as well! Being too soft leaves you invulnerable which I will not like! Remember! You and I were one and the same! If anything were to happen to you, the same thing will happen to me! “
“I-I understand! I’ll do it!” Lakshman said firmly and tried to nod his head when he suddenly remembered he was only able to move his hands in the darkness.
“Right… Now that we’ve cleared that, why don’t you go ahead and claim Emilia Serabell.”
“What?! What do you mean by claim her?!” Lakshman shouted in a shocked voice.
“Make her yours. Purchase her or buy her depending on the right use of terms,” the voice said calmly.
“Um… Just so you know, she belongs to a guy that is—!”
“A guy who is has money in his fat head and food in his fat belly. Yes, I know.”
“Ah… Are you suggesting that I set her free of the Slave Seal as the Phoenix Titan?”
“Correct! The Phoenix Titan can do it because of his motto for freedom and justice. Use that to your advantage and set her free. Then go and claim her as yours from the Slave Market. Besides, think of this as doing her a favour because of how badly he treat her.”
Lakshman suddenly remembered Emilia writhing on the floor as the Slave Seal tortured her.
“You know… I feel it’s wrong to use the Phoenix Titan’s majestic name for use like that.”
“Like I said, the past Phoenix Titans would totally be fine with your choice. After all, they fought for freedom and justice which is exactly what you’ll be doing. So go claim her as yours!”
“Mmm, but why me? Couldn’t someone better than me be better suited? After all, I’m only thirteen years old and she’s about the same age as me.”
For a moment, there was silence in which Lakshman wondered if he said something wrong. Then the voice said “Just like Ondine and Tetra, she is also drawn to you. She is just unable to show her feelings because of her status as a slave.”
“Oh… So that’s what I’ve been feeling whenever I see her.”
“Yes. You have an unbreakable bond that connects you and the girls that love you. Never break that bond because you will need them in the future.”
“Ah… Okay then. I’ll take your word for it,” Lakshman said cheerfully.
Lakshman suddenly felt a lot light headed because of all that he had learnt. Even the things he was going to do seemed unreal to him. Still, he continued to smile in the dark at the thought of love.
At that moment, he suddenly realised something. The voice had been telling him so much information, so much advice and given him such great analysis. It made him wonder if this voice in the darkness was an evil spirit.
“Hey… Are you perhaps an evil spirit that’s going to make me do bad things?” Lakshman asked curiously.
For a moment, there was silence. Then the voice angrily bellowed “You fool! If I really am a evil spirit, I wouldn’t be giving you advice! I would take forcibly take control of your body and do bad things with it! You wouldn’t even be aware of the things I did until after I set you free!”
“Oh! That’s right. I forgot about that,” Lakshman said when he remembered the events from the village where it was discovered that the Werewolves and Vampires were possessed.
“Seriously…! No one’s going to be around all the time to give you answers! You’re a man so try to be prepared for a lot of things to happen in this unpredictable world!”
“Y-Yes! I’m sorry!” Lakshman quickly said in an apologetic tone.
The voice sighed tiredly and said “Sheesh! I never expect I would counsel my other self like this! Oh! It’s morning already!”
At that moment, Lakshman felt his consciousness rising upward. That was when he realised he was waking up.
“Looks like you’re going away. Now make sure to do what we’ve spent this whole time talking about, got it!”
“I will and hey… will you still be here?” Lakshman asked curiously.
At his question, the voice laughed and when he spoke, his voice sounded distant.
“Aren’t you forgetting? We were one and the same! So yes! I will be here!”
“Ah. Okay then, Decisive Player! I’ll see you later then.
“So we’re going to call each other Decisive Player and Innocent Player? That’s funny!”
“Yeah, but don’t be so happy! I’ll become the Decisive Player soon!”
“Keep dreaming! Oh wait, you can’t! Haha! Whatever! Now make sure to do those things, Innocent Player and stay well. Remember that whatever happens to you will also happen to me! We both affected, got it! So don’t embarrass me! I’ll give you an earful the next you come here!”
As Lakshman’s consciousness drifting to the top, he heard the voice shout “Don’t expect me to do all this analysis all the time! I’m not your counsellor!”
Lakshman laughed and said “Sure thing, Decisive Player!”
The next thing he knew, he was seeing the roof of his room. For a moment, he was puzzled before slowly remembering everything. Then he noticed Ondine and Tetra sleeping on either side of him. For a moment, he lay there and looked up at the ceiling as he thought about it.
“Mmm… Master? You’re up early,” Tetra muttered when she saw him awake.
“Mmm? Master? You’re awake? Are you feeling okay?” Ondine asked in a low voice when she was awaken by Tetra’s voice.
“I’m fine,” He said and hesitated.
“Just do it!”
Lakshman was startled at suddenly hearing the voice of his other self. Then he smiled and nodded in agreement with those words.
“Actually… There’s something I want to talk about…” Lakshman said slowly and the girls listened.
The day was looking nice as sunlight streamed through their curtains. It looked to be a beautiful day for a fresh start.