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Chapter 719. Tea and sympathy

「 Minaho-neesan? 」

Why is Minaho-neesan going to the hotel?

「 Did you forget? This case was brought by Kouzuki-sama to Kuromori 」

Minaho-neesan enters the dining room while saying that.

「 It’s my duty to report to Kouzuki-sama 」

「 No, but Jii-chan made the request to me 」

Jii-chan didn’t talk to Minaho-neesan,

He gave me the orders to provide the Takakura sisters an aptitude test.

「 Therefore, it should be me who’s making the report, right? 」

Even though the order was to check whether they can become prostitutes or not, I came to the conclusion that the three of them can’t.

That’s perhaps going to go against Jii-chan’s expectations.

Therefore, I’ll go to the hotel and talk to Jii-chan and convince him somehow.

This is my responsibility, my problem. All of it.

In the first place, Jii-chan personally asked me to do this,

It has nothing to do with Minaho-neesan.

Therefore, I don’t think that Minaho-neesan should come together.

Jii-chan would get angry and maybe give me some penalty,

I have to face it myself.

I can’t involve Minaho-neesan here.

I’m already an adult.

「 Yoshinobu, that’s a no 」

Minaho-neesan speaks to me in a strict tone.

「 You’re a child of Kuromori house. My brother. Aren’t you a member of Kuromori organization? 」

Well.

「 Yoshinobu, you’re still in first-year high school. You’re not a grown-up man. I’m your guardian. It’s my duty to nurture you to become a decent adult 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 And so, I will be taking responsibility to what you’ve done now. You’re not in the age to take responsibility for your actions. No, I won’t allow it 」

That’s…

「 Kouzuki-sama and I conduct business in the adult’s world 」

Wait, wait!

「 I’m already an adult too! I can take responsibilities for my actions! 」

I am myself.

I’m already an adult.

…I

「 Listen, you’re still a brat! 」

Kudou-papa speaks to me a bit irritated.

「 Do you really think that you can take all of the responsibilities given to you? 」

「 No, I 」

「 Do you have money? Connections? Influence? 」

Kudou-papa’s eyes show seriousness.

「 Do you even know the expenses spent on all that’s happening now? It’s not just money! Bringing the Kansai Yakuza to Tokyo needs approvals from the government people and the Yakuza from Kanto as well. Due to the groundwork necessary for the dealings, the meeting was moved to 3 pm 」

This doesn’t involve just Takakura shrine anymore.

「 Kouzuki-jiisan, the leaders in Kansai Yakuza, and the two bosses who were the core of this case will gather up. What can a kid like you do in front of those people? 」

Can’t I just explain things to Jii-chan?

「 Would you even have worth to those people? What? Am I wrong?! Answer?! 」

Kudou-papa’s right.

I’m just a high school boy.

Furthermore, I’m abandoned by my parents, and Minaho-neesan picked me up.

I don’t have money, connection, or influence.

「 That’s why your big-sis is taking responsibility for the things you did! 」

Minaho-neesan?

「 Yes. I’m the head of Kuromori group and a familiar person in the underground society.

Ah.

I see. I was being naive.

Too naive.

「 Yoshinobu. You seem to be putting emphasis on the fact that Kouzuki-sama gave the request for an aptitude test directly to you but, 」

Yesterday, Jii-chan entrusted the Takakura sisters to us.

Jii-chan skipped Minaho-neesan, the head of Kuromori and talked to me directly.

And so I thought that this isn’t a job for Kuromori, but a personal one since Jii-chan talked to me.

And so, I was under the impression that it’s a personal relationship with Jii-chan, but.

「 Your perception is wrong. Kouzuki-sama gave the request to you with me watching all of it 」

I see. He talked to me while Minaho-neesan’s present on purpose.

「 Kouzuki-sama has gone through the logical manner before giving you a request 」

Logical manner?

「 You belong to my group. Kouzuki-sama cannot give you a job without my permission. Kuromori isn’t under Kouzuki group’s umbrella. The two are independent organizations 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 Therefore, Kouzuki-sama already told me about the aptitude test he’s about to ask you to do back when we were in Kyoto 」

Minaho-neesan and Jii-chan talked about it beforehand.

When the two of them were in Kyoto.

They had plenty of time to exchange ideas without me knowing.

「 To begin with, Kouzuki-san introduced the Takakura sisters as candidates for new prostitutes in Kuromori. Remember? 」

Yeah.

「 And so, I came with him to Kyoto to check whether the sisters can become goods we can sell 」

Minaho-neesan looks at Tsukiko and the two.

「 I don’t care about Takakura-san’s background at all 」

I see.

Minaho-neesan doesn’t care about the problem of the three regarding the Takakura shrine maidens.

She’s only looking at Tsukiko and the two in context of whether they can be used to serve customers of Kuromori.

「 I thought that they have worth selling. Therefore, I decided to take them. It was business 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 It’s the same for Kouzuki-sama, he asked you to give the sisters an appropriate inspection as a job 」

As expected, it’s business.

「 Therefore, you shouldn’t even try to know about their past and the problems they have. All you should have done is be level-headed and decide whether they can sell as prostitutes or not 」

If it’s business.

「 For example, a food company is asked to sample a new biscuit. An ordinary person will just eat the sample food and say whether the product can be sold on the market or not 」

Minaho-neesan stares at me.

「 Say that you’re asked to sample the food, isn’t it wrong to check on the production process of the biscuit and the production area of the raw materials such as what, don’t you think? You complained about the existence of the biscuits themselves instead of evaluating the taste of the product. That’s what you did 」

From my standpoint,

Should I not know about the binds of the shrine maiden?

If I just had sex with the sisters and check for their aptitude, then,

「 But, Minaho-neesan 」

…I

「 Tsukiko, Yomiko, and Luna aren’t biscuits! They’re people! 」

I can’t let things be vague.

「 I wanted to understand the three. I accepted not just their bodies but minds too. After all! 」

That’s right.

「 We’re humans! 」

I can’t help but speak out my emotions.

「 Indeed. You were never treated human by your parents. You endured the depravity of right to live as a person. You had a hard time. Therefore, you want to do something about Takakura-san’s situation 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 I know. I also had that experience 」

Minaho-neesan was kidnapped and turned to a prostitute.

Her family died, and she almost did too. Her body’s unable to bear a child anymore.

It’s the same fate as Tsukiko’s shrine maiden.

her life was turned crazy because of selfish men.

「 But, I don’t sympathize with Takakura-san 」

Huh?

「 Yoshinobu, there are times where it’s impolite to be sympathetic to a person. You look down on someone, and thus you establish sympathy 」

Minaho-neesan?

「 You pity Takakura-san too much. That’s why you went outside of Kouzuki-sama’s request and got involved with them. Knowing the problems they have, you tried to find a solution on your own. You didn’t even receive Kouzuki-sama’s permission 」

That’s.

「 But, you just discovered Tsukiko-san’s intend, didn’t you? No matter how much you push your selfish sympathy, Tsukiko chose her own future 」

…I

「 It’s okay to love women. To think that they’re beautiful. To think that they’re cute. To think that you want to be kind to them. To think you want to have sex with them. Sure, be honest with your feelings. That makes women happy too. That shows that you look them, evaluate, and love them 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 But, you must never sympathize. Don’t pity them 」

I mustn’t sympathize.

「 Think about it. In the first place, do you think you’re someone who can afford to be sympathetic of others? 」

A surplus to sympathize with other people,

「 You’re doing all that you can on your everyday life, can you have the time to be sympathetic to others? 」

That’s.

「 Minaho-oneesama that should be enough 」

「 Yes, please give Danna-sama some time 」

Ruriko and Misuzu said.

「 Danna-sama already knows it 」

「 Our over-dependence on Onii-sama was causing this as well 」

「 He’s trying to catch up with all of his thoughts for now 」

「 He just thinks that Tsukiko-san shouldn’t bear the burden alone 」

The two said.

「 That’s right, Minaho. Everyone here is hungry, and we should call Agnes and Mao-chan in here already 」

Margo-san said while smiling wryly.

Now that she mentioned it. Agnes and Mao aren’t here.

Yukino and Yoshiko-san as well,

「 Uhm, Kuromori-sama, I 」

Tsukiko speaks to Minaho-neesan worriedly.

「 You don’t have to worry. You already belong to the group. It can’t be helped. Yoshinobu accepted you 」

Minaho-neesan replied.

「 But, Yoshinobu, you mustn’t sympathize with those who will come next week, the actual prostitute candidates 」

「 Well, that one’s the real deal anyway 」

Margo-san, you mean?

「 You have to respect their resolve to become a prostitute as they had their will to bear the burden of becoming a prostitute. This time, with the Takakura case, it’s doing well somehow, but it won’t always end up like this 」

「 That’s right. The Takakura sisters don’t have any debts, so it’s okay, but we can’t afford to accept a girl with a 5 million debt and such 」

Gils like those will come next week.

「 Let me say it again. You can love them but don’t sympathize. There are no exceptions 」

I engrave it to my heart.

「 Okay now, that’s all for the sermon 」

Margo-san smiled.

「 Ruri-chan, call the girls outside 」

「 Okay 」

Ruriko comes out of the dining room.

「 Danna-sama, please sit over here 」

「 O-Okay 」

「 I’ll prepare tea right now 」

I sit on the seat Misuzu assigned for me.

Then,

Tsukiko, Yomiko, and Luna gather around me.

「 Uhm, Kou-sama 」

The three of them are holding hands.

Their hearts are linked.

「 We understand 」

Tsukiko.

「 Even if it’s sympathy at first 」

「 Now it’s love 」

Luna, Yomiko.

The sisters smile gently.

They stare at me.

「 Sit over here. You should take your seats as well 」

Minaho-neesan sits in front of me.

Tsukiko and the two also took their seats.

「 Y-Yes, thank you 」

The three sits close to me.

「 Sorry. As mentioned earlier, things went well if we look at the results 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 Yoshinobu, you don’t have to be that depressed. We knew that you’d fail this job from the start 」

She sighed.

「 You may already know it but, your behavior since yesterday, your thoughts, and your choices, I know all of it. The whole process as you explore in the dark 」

Minaho-neesan’s been watching me in the surveillance system for a long time.

「 You’re a failure in the adult business. I’ll have to apologize to Kouzuki-sama for that. But, I thought that your relationship with Tsukiko-san would be an effective fix on the distortion in your heart. Therefore, I didn’t say anything until now 」

My distortions.

Fixing it.

「 You’ve been working hard for this past four months. But, you’re trying too hard that you’re about to break down. You’re trying to cover for all of the contradictions in our lives alone. We seek you, and you give us peace of mind, but you’re alone 」

I’m the only man in this family.

I have to take care of all my women alone.

「 Therefore, I’m always worried about the family. About Megumi and you 」

Megu and me?

「 The two of you seem that the balance in your heart is about to break for the past four months 」

I’m worried about Megu, but,

From Minaho-neesan’s perspective, she worries about us both.

「 Tsukiko-san. As for what you were doing with Yoshinobu earlier 」

Minaho-neesan looks at Tsukiko.

「 Was that the real Miko power? 」

Huh?

Earlier? When Tsukiko and I were having sex?

Sure, Tsukiko was reading my mind earlier, but,

「 It was successful in guiding Yoshinobu’s heart 」

Guiding?

「 Yes, that is the real shrine maiden healing 」

Tsukiko said.

「 Kou-sama, I used the power to make you obey while trying not to make you aware of it 」

Power, what?

「 Yes, I didn’t use strong force to let Kou-sama do what I want, but instead, I gave him a light push and guided him to be forward-looking 」

W-What’s going on?

「 When using TV or radio, do you maximize the volume? 」

Minaho-nesan asks.

「 No, I don’t. After all, max volume is just too noisy 」

「 Indeed. There’s this “just right” for each and everything. In radio, 2 or 3 would be enough. You don’t go to volume 10 right away 」

Just right?

「 But, the volume goes up to 10 as a function. Even in cars. In our daily lives, we don’t drive at 150kph; however, it’s in the speedometer, and if you step on the accelerator, you can reach speeds over the legal limits 」

Y-Yeah.

「 You only use the maximum output on special occasions, not on the ordinary situations 」

Minaho-neesan laughs.

「 Shrine maidens don’t use their power to make someone obey by shouting an order and making you do whatever they say. They’ll be worn out if they use their power at max output 」

I-I see.

「 The ancient wandering shrine maidens only use a bit of their power through sex. They use it to have the man’s heart turn forward-facing, but not to the extent that they become aware of the power’s usage 」

Tsukiko said.

「 It’s the same as using drugs for treatment. Miko power is in the end, just a supporting healing power to the other party’s mind. It’s an aid to help one get better. Well, if using the max output Miko power then you can forcibly fix the twist someone’s mind, but if you do that, it will only distort them further 」

Minaho-neesan said.

「 I asked Tsukiko-san to cure your mental distortion using her Miko power

「 Yes, therefore, I 」

Tsukiko blushed.

「 I’ve become a genuine shrine maiden by performing the shrine maiden healing 」

So that was the real Miko power.

I didn’t notice it at all, but,

But they’re right, after having sex with Tsukiko, I felt relieved.

「 And now that I’ve become a genuine shrine maiden, I will seal off this power 」

Tsukiko?

「 I will only use this healing to Kou-sama 」

I see.

Unlike the wandering shrine maidens,

She decided not to have sex and work to heal other men.

「 Yes. That’s my intent 」

Tsukiko replied with a smile.

「 But, Minaho-neesan, when did you notice that Miko power was like that? 」

We didn’t reach that conclusion last night.

「 That’s 」

Shou-neechan turns to us.

「 Don’t look down on Kouzuki SS! 」

Huh?

「 Minaho-san sent over all of the information you got from the Takakura sisters about the shrine maiden 」

Our conversation? Oh, the talk about the shrine maidens?

「 And then, Kouzuki SS’ researchers read through the old documents about the Takakura shrine. That includes the activity of the wandering shrine maidens during the Edo period 」

I-I see.

「 And then, we somehow managed to see what shrine maidens really are 」

「 This morning, I received the interim report from Shou-san. While you were doing it with Luna-san. We made various inferences based on that 」

Minaho-neesan inferred that Miko power isn’t used at max power,

But instead, she noticed that it’s used to guide the other party secretly.

「 According to the ancient documents, the shrine maiden’s job is to heal hearts. Tsukiko-san just healed your heart now. Once she’s healed one person, then she’s already a proper shrine maiden 」

「 Yes, Kou-sama made me a genuine Takakura shrine maiden 」

Tsukiko says.

「 What’s left is to kick out the fake shrine maiden 」

Shou-neechan said.

Fake shrine maiden. Tsukiko’s aunt, Kiyomi-san

「 She’s coming to Tokyo 」

I knew it, confrontation is inevitable.

「 Kudou-san. I made 8 spaghetti lunchboxes! 」

Katsuko-nee pushes a wagon from the kitchen.

「 And this pot is coffee. This one is salad 」

「 Thanks. Well then, I’ll go eat outside with my friends 」

Kudou-papa takes the lunch box and tries to leave the room.

「 Ah, wait, Kudou-san 」

Then, Katsuko-nee stops Kudou-papa

「 What? 」

Kudou-papa turns around.

「 She woke up, I was contacted through the extension phone 」

“She,” Kudou Haruka.

「 Nei-chan’s bringing her now 」

Ah, I haven’t seen Nei since earlier.

「 Sorry but could you do something about her? 」

Kudou-papa said.

「 You see, I’m not really a good father to her. I find Haruka hard to deal with 」

Then,

「 Father, you’re still Aneue’s parent 」

Michi talks to her father.

「 Take responsibility for your child 」
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