an English translation of the novel

Page 402-403

The chanting sounded like a chorus of crickets reverberating in my ears.

That was the day of my initiation to receive my cantus.

Why is it that as my life neared its end, I don’t think about my family, or the happy times in my childhood, but of that scene.

Suddenly, a completely different memory surfaced.

 

“That’s against the rules. We can’t tell anyone what our mantra is,” Satoru said pertly.

Although he was usually up to no good, Satoru suddenly decided to put on the act of a model student.

“It’s fine. We’re friends, right? I won’t tell anyone,” I wheedled.

“Why do you want to know anyway?”

“I want to see what it’s like. Like how it’s different from mine, and such.”

“…then tell me yours,” Satoru said slyly.

He was provoking me. Fine. Two can play at that game.

“Okay. How about this? We’ll write it down, and show each other on the count of three.”

“…um. Actually, no. If we show it to someone else, it’ll lose its power.”

That’s not how it works, I wanted to say.

“So? It’s not like I’ll be looking at it long enough to remember it. Just flash it for a second.”

“Then what’s the point?” Satoru asked suspiciously.

“It shows that we’re friends. Also, we can get a general feel for how long it is and such.”

I managed to convince him, so we wrote out our mantras on sheets of straw paper.

“Ready? One, two, three,” we flipped our papers around and looked at each other’s mantra for a tenth of a second.

“Did you see it?” Satoru asked worriedly.


 
     

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