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The Witching Hour [1]


tl by danluffey

Mane of the Wind [5]
The Witching Hour


The Witching Hour... When the sun sets, and monsters run rampant. What I saw that night, though, wasn't a monster... I saw the shadows of two friends, so pure and human...


One year ago, before everything began... It was still summer, and a heavy twilight had set in...

1: Waaaaauuggh

1: He...
2: He's... dead...
3: His head was attached to the back of the motorcycle with a rope...

1: Someone used the motorcycle to drag him!
2: They dragged him... and killed him...
3: Hiiee...
4: Wh... Wh...
5: Who's there?
6: Is someone
7: back there?!

1: Hey!
2: Good! It looks like this person's still alive!
3: Ugh...

1: Sano?!
2: You're Sano, aren't you? Sano Yumetoki!
3: I'm Yamada, one of your classmates! Do you know who I am?
4: Yeah...
5: What happened here?
6: What are you doing out here?!
7: Nothing...
8: Someone just told me to meet them out here. Then, when I got here, someone hit my head from behind...

1: Then... is that...
box 4: Did Sano kill that person? I thought for a moment...
box 6: At the same time, he seemed to be wondering the same thing as me, doubting himself...

SIGN: Sugano Public High School

1: Sano!
2: You're that kid from yesterday...
3: Yamada. Did your wounds heal OK?

1: I thought last night was never going to end. They asked me about every little thing they could think of at the police station.
2: That must have felt like a disaster, considering you had nothing to do with it.
3: It's OK, though. I managed to get home safely, after all.
4: Yamada.
5: You seem really friendly this morning. What happened to the pale face you showed me when you first saw me and flinched?
SFX: flinch...
6: Um...
7: Well, I...
8: I'm sorry! I just thought for a moment that you might be the one who killed that person, but...
9: But?

1: But after standing next to you and thinking for a bit, I realized that couldn't be the case...
2: I know that doesn't really explain it, but...
3: It might have been me.
4: I might have killed him.
5: I don't remember, but maybe I did it unconsciously.
6: Sano...

1: Yumetoki...
2: Hey, is it true that he killed someone?
3: Don't say that! I'm a fan of him! He may be cold, but he would never actually kill someone!
4: How do you know that? The world may laud him as a 16-year old genius figure skater,
5: but he's infamous around here for the thugs he hangs out with. There's no counting how many people have stood up to defy him without any knowledge of just how violent he is, only to get put in the hospital.

1: Wait, Yumetoki.
2: Nangou! A second-year...
3: He's the leader of the thugs in that grade...
4: Hieeeh!

1: Must be nice to be a star.
SFX: skritch...
2: Even if you kill someone, they're willing to let you off easy.
3: Unfortunately for you, they merely lack evidence.
4: Why'd you kill him like that?
5: Tell me! Why did you kill him like that?!
6: Your motorcycle was found on the scene!

1: He was my friend!
2: I also know that he called you out there so that you two could fight!
3: You could snap my neck with those slim arms of yours and laugh while you did it!
4: He knew that even before he went, so he knew what he was getting himself into...
5: But why did you have to kill him like that?
6: His body was covered in wounds after getting dragged around by your motorcycle!
7: You scum!

1: Stop it,
2: Ryuuji!!

1: Natsuo?
2: What are you doing? Out of the way!
3: No! Stop it, Ryuuji!
4: Yumetoki didn't kill him!
5: Ryuuji!
6: Yumetoki didn't kill anyone!!
7: That's enough!

1: Sorry, Nangou,
2: but the teachers told me to bring Sano to them as quickly as possible. They seem to want to question him about what happened yesterday.
3: OK? Would you be so kind as to step aside out of respect for me?
4: Sano.
5: Go to the teachers' room at once. I could help you, you know, if you like...
6: No thanks.
7: You're Nogami, aren't you? From the student council.
8: I'm
9: different from Nangou over there. I've no interest in demanding gratitude for people, nor do I have any intention to team up with you.

1: Come on, Natsuo.
2: Sano!
3: Are you sure it's OK to talk to Nogami like that?
4: Hmph. Nogami, a student so powerful that not even Nangou can defy him?
5: I hate his type the most.
6: Stupid frog face...

box 2: That girl...
box 3: Is she his friend?

1: Sano...
2: You never went to the teachers' room, did you? They're all really mad now!
3: Let them be. Repeating everything I told the police would just tire me out.
4: OK, if you say so... But don't come crying to me if it puts you in hot water.
5: Hmph.
6: Huh?
7: Sano! Look...
8: Look down there!

SIGN: Health Office

1: Sorry... I was hoping the nurse would be here. Unfortunately, I'm not too good with this stuff...
2: Does it hurt?
3: Oh no, it's fine. Thank you so much...
4: Nangou did this, didn't he?
5: He got angry at you for what happened this morning.
6: Ryuuji never hits girls.
7: Even if he got one of his friends to do it, the responsibility still lies with him.
8: Natsuo...
9: That's your name, right?
10: Why are you so sure that Sano isn't responsible for the murder?
11: Because it's true!

1: Ryuuji said it himself. why would Yumetoki kill someone like that?
2: He doesn't want to believe that Yumetoki did it either.
3: It wasn't him.
4: It's sad that people are trying to blame it on him.
5: The only kind of person who could kill another like that
6: is someone who isn't human anymore.
7: They may look human,
8: but they've long since lost their humanity. They're something else...

1: How can you be sure of that much?
2: I...
3: know
4: who the killer is.

1: Y...
2: You... Natsuo... What exactly do you mean...
3: I can't say who exactly it is. Thanks. I'm going to go now.

1: Find him on your own.
2: And then...
3: Natsuo!

box 3: And then?
box 5: She... knows something.
box 6: She wasn't joking around. I'm pretty sure she was serious.
box 7: Who is the killer?
SFX: ding dong

1: Hey... Waiting for someone, Yamada?

1: Yes... I am.
2: Hmm...
3: Nogami...
4: Of all the people to run into!
5: I saw you with Sano this morning.
6: I'd steer clear of him if I were you.
7: As I'm sure you know, he's dangerous.
8: The school's already decided that the next time he does something, he's getting kicked out.

1: Kicked out?
2: Please, hold on a minute! That's not fair! There isn't even any proof that he was the killer!
3: Still... there's no denying that he's involved in this mess somehow.
4: And besides, you know what sort of things he gets up to daily,
5: right?
6: If only he'd let me help him,
7: like I do with Nangou, things might end up differently for him...

1: Yamada.
2: Natsuo...
3: I overheard... You poor thing.
4: You don't think Nogami
5: might have given the teachers some advice, do you?
6: As everyone knows, his word is powerful enough to influence the entire school.
7: Nangou's thugs have gotten into so much trouble, yet time and time again, they've gone to Nogami for help, and he's managed to solve things quietly for them.
8: As of now, they're at his beck and call.

1: Except for Sano Yumetoki, that is.
2: I wonder if Nogami thinks that Sano is a nuisance.
3: I heard once in middle school that one of the thugs who had been defying Nogami later fell off the school roof.
4: But...
5: I don't think Sano will ever bow down to him, even now.
6: Natsuo...
7: I was waiting for you. I thought you might be able to tell me something about the killer... anything.
8: I can't understand why you would want to keep the identity a secret, though.

1: Now that this has happened, we really need to find the true criminal as quickly as possible and prove Sano's innocence.
2: Natsuo...
3: Apparently,
4: there was a watch found on the ground
5: next to the corpse.

1: A watch?
2: Natsuo...


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