‘A Journey Without Me’ (6)

A while later, after she was done listening about the heroine’s death at the ending of route C, she looked like she was on the verge of tears and took a deep breath, perhaps unable to control her emotions.

I wanted to ask her honest opinion, so I waited until she calmed down.

“How is it?” I asked.

“I don’t want to condescend the storyline you created, but how about this kind of finale if the ending were to differ by the choices each player makes?”

“Do you have any good in mind?”

Yuki seemed a little hesitant but offered a solution based on the scenario I had come up with.

Pretty soon, I was deep in thought after listening to everything she said.

‘That’s not too bad. It may actually be more touching for the users than the scenario I came up with.’

“What do you think? If I were in a situation like this where I had no choice but to leave the person I loved, I would do the same for them.”

Extremely satisfied with the scenario Yuki suggested, I grinned and answered,

“That’s pretty good. Truth is, I was a little worried the users may be traumatized since the ending was too extreme.”

The truth is even I was worried about a couple of things as I was writing the scenario.

At the beginning of this year, ‘Gundam : Char’s Counter Attack was released in theaters and there was a rumor that some fans committed suicide, unable to bear with the fact that the main character Amuro and his rival Char died in the movie.

This may be shocking news to ordinary people, but I have seen stories of people in the newspaper who also ended up committing suicide unable to overcome the shock when their favorite actor or celebrity passed away.

Stories with an extreme ending may leave a strong impression, but it may end up in a chaos.

Recently, however, making the scenario was slow progress because it wasn’t easy coming up with a good ending that could help users empathize with the main character and heroine.

“Yuki, I’m sorry but I have a favor to ask you.”

“Huh? What’s that?”

“The ending you just told me. Do you think you could write out the scenario? I want to pass it on to Morita when I give him my scenario next time I see him.”

Yuki broke into a grin and nodded.

“I will.”

&

A week later, I heard a pleasantly familiar voice as I arrived at Shinjuku station to meet Morita.

“Mr. Jun-hyuk~!!”

I saw Yuki wave at me at a distance when I looked up at the sound of a voice calling my name.

Once she saw me, she ran up to me and eyed me closely and asked,

“Are you feeling better?”

“Yeah, I’ve been sleeping a lot since.”

“That’s a relief.”

“Are you already done with the project?”

“Mmmhmm.. I’m haven’t completed it yet. I just wrote the part where it continues on from yours. I wanted to show it to Mr. Morita as soon as possible as well… but do you think Mr. Morita will also approve of the scenario I wrote?

“I think Mr. Morita will like it a lot. But Mr. Hayashi might not, because this means more work for him…”

“Mr. Hayashi scares me a little..”

A week ago, Yuki had written out a new ending based on the copy of the scenario for ‘A Journey Without Me’.

She had looked through the scenario from the beginning when she got home, smoothing out sentences and revising the whole thing.

“But I think it’s quite charming of you to create a game. I only play games like Dragon Emblem and Psychic Battle, but after personally writing a scenario, I’m curious and looking forward to seeing how the users will react to this.”

We walked over to the destination we had to meet Morita and Hayashi.

Shinjuku is full of shoppers or lovers on a date during the weekend so Yuki had to walk on ahead, pushing through crowds of people.

There were tons of dessert shops or clothing stores which is something Yuki likes, but she looked determinedly away from these shops as not to get in my way and I thought that was cute.

Should we go to one of the dessert shops if there is time left over after our meeting with Mr. Morita and give him the script?

I smiled to myself, held her hand, and walked briskly. Soon, we were able to meet Morita and Hayashi in a quiet tea shop.

“Oh? Ms. Yuki, you’re here as well!”

Morita greeted Yuki

“Hello, Mr. Morita. Thanks again for last week”

“Oh, yeah. Now that I think about it, Director, didn’t you pass out when you were on the phone with Yuki? Are you feeling okay now?”

“Yes, thank you.”

“I told you not to push yourself too hard. But Ms. Yuki, what brings you here?”

“Truth is, I ended up writing out another ending route along with a revision on the ‘A Journey Without Me’ scenario.”

“Another ending route? Not by Ms. Yuki herself is it?”

Morita asked, and Yuki nodded, smiling.

“I look forward to working with you, Mr. Morita.”

“Ah, I as well!!”

But Hayashi didn’t seem too pleased.

“There are more ending routes? We need to add on three endings with each additional route. It may be in text, but there’s no storage left because of Morita’s art asset.”

“I’m sorry, Mr. Hayashi.”

“No.. it’s… you’re not the one to apologize Ms. Yuki. Morita, you. Why don’t you decrease the storage for your art assets? “

“Sorry, I’ll try to.”

Hayashi simply couldn’t get himself to scold Yuki and lashed out on Morita, grumbling to himself.

Hayashi was reacting sensitively to every ending route because of the lack of storage in the cartridge system. We wouldn’t be having a problem if it were a CD media instead…

Even Morita was being wary of Hayashi, carefully making art sprite using 16 colors.

At this point, even I was starting to get confused whether it was Morita or Hayashi who was showing off their mad skills.

‘But if it’s a route for new ending… is it another sad ending this time? Director, I don’t think I can mentally handle that anymore.”

Then Yuki pulled out a brown envelope form for her bag and handed it to Morita.

“This is another ending route I’ve come up with. Would you take a look at it please?”

Morita and Hayashi took the scenario in their hands.

I hadn’t asked her to, but she had been sensible enough to bring a copy for each of us.

Just as I was flipping over the pages of her scenario, Yuki, who looked nervous as a student about to take an exam, asked me.

“Jun – Hyuk, would you like something to drink?”

“Oh, sure. What would you like? I’ll go order”

“No! I want to go order. I just feel embarrassed trying to read my own scenario in front of my very eyes. Coffee for you, Jun-Hyuk, right?”

“Yeah… thanks.”

Soon, Yuki left Morita and Hayashi to reading her script and walked over to the cashier.

And she didn’t come back to her seat until all of our orders had come out.

The three of us leaned back on our chairs and started reading through Yuki’s scenario.

We couldn’t change the entirety of the main scenario so her ending started from the point where the main character had died.

And then,

“Director.. I’m totally down for this scenario,” exclaimed Morita, who had finished reading first and Hayashi, who wasn’t done yet, exclaimed back,

“No!! I’m not done reading yet. Don’t say anything yet!”

So we had no chance but to watch Hayashi quietly until Yuki came out with the coffee and the fruit juice. Even Yuki caught on and waited quietly with us until Mr. Hayashi was done reading until the end of the scenario.

“Ah, dang it… the café lights are too dim..”

Hayashi mumbled, blaming the lights as he wiped away the tears under his glasses.

“What did the two of you think of this?”

Morita and Hayashi glanced at each other for a moment and nodded.

“Honestly.. it’s better than your scenario, director.”

“…”

I had been acknowledging this as well, but I was starting to feel offended.

I nodded at their response as I looked at the scenario Yuki had handed me.

‘A letter from heaven for the girl who was left alone after the main character dies… now that I think about it, I do remember a Korean movie with a similar storyline… was it called ‘Letter?’ I had cried a lot after watching that as well..’

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