Episode Zero -Friends- Chapter 5

This is the fifth chapter of Part Two: Friends of Episode Zero -Promise- written by Jun Eishima.
The translation below is by Lissar. Because official romanizations of the names have not yet been released, they might be off.

No matter how small the promise you shouldn’t break it… huh…
Hope reflected on the words the memory brought. I believed in those words, he thought. I always believed in them. Then even my father, the very man who taught them to me, forgot them.
No, his father probably still follows them to the letter. Just not when it concerns Hope or his mother. If it’s his work he’ll go running, anytime day or night. He’ll even forget to eat, locked away in his study. The way his father is now, nothing is more important, nothing takes more precedence, than work.
His father no longer remember promises made with his family. He didn’t even listen to them anymore. When was the last time Hope bothered to start a conversation with him? A long time ago. What did I want to talk about, he wondered, I’ve even forgotten what it was. His father had said “Sorry, I can’t now, we can talk about it later.” Now the only thing Hope could remember was how his father had just brushed him aside. He remembered it as if it were yesterday. When his father had left, he finally realized something. It didn’t matter what he expected, what he’d hope for, there was nothing he could do.
“It’s too bad everything has been closed off, but at least we were able to see fal’Cie Kujata.”
His mother’s words brought him back to himself. They had just seen the fal’Cie of the energy plant, and were heading back to the entrance. He couldn’t make peace with his thoughts, but looked away and feigned disinterest.
“This trip seemed too short.”
“Half of the plant was closed off. It really couldn’t be helped you know.”
The accident that happened at Ewleede was far more serious than the reports had let on. You could tell just by coming here.
“I wonder if the fal’Cie in Sunleth was like that one.”
“Oh right, you went there during that nature field trip. You didn’t meet the fal’Cie?”
“Nope. They told us about how it controls the weather, but the only thing we saw were monsters.”
“Oh yes, I remember. You were attack by those monsters and got a fever. I was so worried.”
Maybe it was because he had encountered monsters twice during his time at Sunleth, but on their trip home Hope had suddenly fallen ill with a fever. Once they reached Palumpolum he was immediately taken to the emergency room. Because that happened he never got to thank the pilot of the airship. He had heard about it from Kai and Elida three days later.
“He was super cool. He was this old guy who had hair like a bird’s nest.”
“He said his son was just born a little while ago.”
“When I told him I wanted to become a pilot, he said ‘Good luck!’”
Kai couldn’t stop talking about the pilot of that airship. After that, Kai never wavered in his dream to become a pilot. It made Hope a little jealous. Even Elida had a dream for what she wanted to do in the future. She said she wanted to become a singer, so she entered into an all girls school that had a special music program. That was a year ago.
When I was younger I wanted to become like my father…
Of course now his father is an example of the kind of person he doesn’t want to become. No matter what kind of job he worked at, he didn’t want to become the kind of person who will ignore those who are close to him. He would be happy so long as he never became the kind of person who would forget even the tiniest promise.
“…. right?”
“Uh, what? Sorry, I wasn’t listening.”
He resolved to stop thinking so much and actually listen. Not listening to people when they talk would be exactly what his father would do…
“The people just passing by were just saying that during the accident a little boy was hurt very badly. They said it was so sad, they couldn’t even look at his father who was with him.”
“I see…”
“I hope he doesn’t die. There is nothing sadder than when a child dies before their parent…”
It doesn’t matter whether the parent or the child goes first, Hope thought, when a family member dies it’s still sad. For those who are left behind.
But Hope didn’t say so. Somehow he couldn’t say it.
“Um, Hope… are you… mad at your father?”
“Not really.”
“He’s just not really all that good at those sort of things you know, but there is a lot of trust in him, he doesn’t want to do a bad job.”
When he looked at his mother’s face, he felt the tight feeling in his chest relax.
“I’m not mad. He’ll be here for the fireworks festival right? Well then that’s okay. I mean the fireworks are the main event after all.”
His mother’s smile looked so happy. Maybe I should try talking with my father on the night of the festival, Hope thought. Of course he’ll just say “How have you been?” or something like that, but if he could just see his mother smile like this, he didn’t care…
A masked soldier walked in front of them. The repairs after the accident should have already been complete, and the usual soldiers at the plant were the security force. Why were there so many PSICOM soldiers around? He felt like some strange, awful thing was crawling up his legs. His mother had a worried look on her face as they got closer to the plaza. Hope tried to make his voice bright an airy.
“Come on, let’s go back to Bowdam. We already saw that fal’Cie.”
Maybe his mother also wanted to shake off that strange feeling that he had felt, she replied in the same bright tone.
“Okay, then let’s go to the shopping mall.”
He didn’t want to think anymore about soldiers and the fal’Cie. He just wanted to think about having fun. Hmm, maybe when I return to Palumpolum I’ll talk to Kai and Elida, Hope thought. If I tell him I saw a ton of soldiers in Ewleede Kai is sure to come running. Elida will probably want to hear more about the fireworks festival than the plant.
It’ll be three years since we’ve been together, Hope thought, thinking of his friends.
His school vacation had only just begun.

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