- Judul : Stomach Books
- Event : Genshiken Story Meet-up #4
- Pengarang : Graf E. Wijaya // sekop
Yap, cerita berikut dikarang dalam Bahasa Inggris. Memang kami akui proses proofread masih sangat dapat diaplikasikan pada cerita ini, namun mayoritas dari kami setuju bahwa cerita ini menghibur dan menegangkan. Bagaimanapun juga, ada rencana dari Rakaputra P. // Rheine untuk me-review cerita ini lebih jauh dalam waktu singkat.
Everyone had secret they stomached.
It all started that day, when I came into a scene of murder. It was grisly, blood was dripping everywhere. Beside the corpse there was a black cat atop a bloody book.
For unknown reason I read the bloody book, curious to what it contains. Maybe it had a clue for the person murder?
No, it was not a clue to the murder. The book had nothing to do besides being here on a murder scene.
Instead it was a story book. No, calling it a mere story book would be like calling a king a mere man. This… this book, I think I’m addicted to its story.
Flip through the pages, I reached the last page of the book. It was a cliffhanger, and underneath the ‘to be continued’ a handwritten note was there.
‘If you want to read the rest of the story, follow the black cat, and extract the book from the stomach of those who are marked.
You might want to bring some sharp tool to extract the book.’
Puzzled but still having the need to read the rest of the story, I picked up the knife lying beside the corpse and followed the cat that started to walk away.
The cat led me to a dilapidated building; there a man is standing on the second floor sneering at me.
He pulled his shirt a bit, showing me a mark on his right chest.
“So I heard some punk would appear to fight me if I agree to wear this mark. I was expecting someone beside a little girl. Bah, whatever, let’s get it on!”
He jumped down and dash toward me. He proceed to pummel me with nearly no effort, before ending it with an uppercut that threw me back. I was barely able to stay conscious.
It hurts… everything is blurry. Why do I have to fight this guy!?
The book, the story within it, of course. I need to know what’s next, no matter what!
Refreshed, I lunged toward the man with only one thought in my mind. Kill.
The man was visibly startled and clumsily threw his left arm to stop me. It hit my face and broke the lens my glasses.
In the end though I persevere, my reckless lunge managed to plunge my knife into his neck.He fell with face a mixture of shock and respect. I quickly stab his neck manically several more time before he finally stopped moving.
Still shocked and rattled I shakily and messily split his stomach apart, and tiredly I fished out the book within. But as soon I flip the book open and read it, I could feel all my pain and fatigue are washed away.
I want to read. I need to read.
The next marked person was a woman who runs a cozy bar. I walked in with the cat cradled in my arm nervously afraid of witness, but it was only for a moment.
The bar was strangely empty even though it is late in the evening. The only person here is the bartender, a plump woman with a nice smile.
“Hello young lady, what can I help you with? If it’s alcohol, I’m sorry but please wait ‘till you are old-“she never finished her sentence as I lunged at her and stabbed her repeatedly. Her face in death was a shocked one.
This time I managed to gut her stomach with a precise cut instead of a messy one. With a barely restrained enthusiasm I plunged my hand into the corpse and fished out the book.
The book was pure bliss. I just want to read it, more and more. Nothing else matter anymore.
I think it was after the fifth or sixth book is when I meet that person. The mastermind responsible for planting books in people; hewas a young bestselling author with an ever-present uncanny smile.
It was in the evening, after extracting the book from the person I murdered under the bridge. I heard a male voice calling me from above.
“If words could kill, now wouldn’t that be wonderful?” he said with an uncanny smile on his face.
We sat together and he muttered sadly, “I’m bored of being read by the masses… that’s why I make these books.”
He then encouraged me to continue to seek and read his books hidden within people.
“I don’t mind a few murders if it’s in order for you to read my works.” He told me that with that uncanny smile etched to his face. “So please, keep reading my works. I want a reader who’s nothing but the best.”
I have managed to collect many books after that. And today, the next mark was a young gentleman who just entered this ball at the hotel I was living in with the author.
A tiny voice told me to wait until he was somewhere secluded. But I ignored that tinyvoice; I need to read the next book now!
I jumped at the gentleman back, clutching him with my legs and right arm. And with my left hand gripping my knife I stab him on his neck.
Quickly I hopped back and circle him to the front. Before he could fell to the ground I gut him with my knife and plunge my right arm into his stomach and pulled the book within.
In mere minutes I managed to get the next book. And I instantly dashed away toward the stair; climbing rapidly to my room at the top floor.
Not caring to rest my leg, or about the facts that my shirt and skirt was bloodied like my hand. I sat down on the room floor and began reading the book.
When I reach the end of the book, the author silently walks toward me from behind. Peeking from above, he read the few lines of the ending of the book, and then he holds me from behind.
“Do you know the next book is the final volume?” he whispered to me while holding a mirror to show me the mark on the back of my neck. “Have you noticed that the next book is within you?”
This is it, sitting on the bed of our room. My shaking hands held the knife aimed at my stomach. The final book, the ending to the story, is within me.
I had to read it no matter what.
I plunged the knife into my stomach- the pain was excruciating- I reached in and pull the book out. And I read it with all my focus, ignoring the shuddering from the pain.
I opened the page, and with my fading eyesight I read the only lines of the final book.
‘Congratulations. You are the most superb reader.
The true conclusion lies inside me.”
As I looked up toward the author he was still smiling with that uncanny smile, unbuttoning his shirt down to show me his mark on his chest.
He stood up and spread his arms wide with his face still donning that persistent and uncanny smile. As if he was inviting me to come and try reading the final book.
Struggling to grab my fallen knife, I grit my teeth and gather all my strength for the final book. I lunged at him and stab his stomach with all of my strength. His smile never faltered for even a moment.
We both fell to the bed, with me sprawling beside him. Just a bit more, a bit more, to the final book. I barely felt the author movement to embrace me.
I had… to read it… but my vision darkens.
I can’t… see… can’t… read…
“This is Nippon Time Newsbreak and we are here with new development of the ‘Grand Hotel incident’.
The two corpse found in the Grand Hotel top floor room was finally identified as the writer with the penname Setsuri Nana Jyo and a girl named Shosetsu Hana. It was assumed that they were lover and decided to end their life together for reason still within speculation.
Kobayashi Shoseki had been missing from her family sincetwo weeks ago where she was presumed living with Setsuri Nana Jyo in this hotel. There were also some witnesses that said that she was the same girl who murdered OgigayatsuShohei, a visitor to the ball hosted in the hotel, brutally a few hours before their presumed time of death. Police had refused to release any statement.
Setsuri Nana Jyo, real name YukimuraTakehito, was a famed author of the hit book ‘midget and demon’. He was a recluse book writer who seldom seen even by his close colleague. The latest news about his activity before death was that he is ‘working on my greatest works, for only the best fan.’ It is assumed that the…”
The newscaster continues to report on the Grand Hotel incident.The black cat watchesthe televisionwith a bored expresion for a few more moment before walking away from the electronics shop.
Left behind by the cat was a book entitled ‘Stomach Book – based on true story. The final work of Y. Takehito”.