Trigger warnings: sexual harassment and attempted r*pe (both not by ML), 18+ content with bestiality(?) in the later part of the novel, non-con (also not by ML) but it’s hard to explain how. There will be tw at the start of the chapters wherever needed, I can’t ask you to skip cause there’s also plot happening, but will try to summarize at the end if you feel really uncomfortable.
Just inside the employee entrance, there was an old-fashioned time recorder with broken corners, reinforced with duct tape. There was a card with the handwritten name “Hayashida Riou“, inserted into it.
With an audible, inorganic sound, the office hours were printed.
Riou put it back on the shelf, hunched a little and proceeded to the changing room.
Riou worked as a contract worker for line production at a small confectionery factory. From 9 PM to 6 AM, 8 hours of work with an hour of break. He was in charge of the final check of the finished product that flowed out. It was in a box, he had to check whether the edges of the box were dented or not, the surface was scratched or not, it was dirty or not. Without any breaks, just keep looking endlessly at the boxes of sweets that flowed out. If a defective box was found, drop it in the container at the feet. That’s all. No one speaks to anyone, no one speaks at all, just keep working motionlessly like this.
It was morning, he inserted his card into the time recorder. After confirming that the time to leave work was printed, Riou went out through the employee entrance.
At the time, the outside was faintly lit. Riou walked out, on his way home.
Stopping at a 24/7 open supermarket on the way, he bought a bento with a “half-off” sticker pasted on it. Riou thought, it was better to buy food at a supermarket than to buy it at a convenience store which wasn’t cheap at all. At the time of check out, the cashier asked,
“Do you want to add chopsticks?”
“…n-no.” Due having used it after a long time, his voice cracked. Riou was embarrassed and purposely coughed a few times. The cashier didn’t worry about it and did his work by reporting the total amount of the purchased goods, “Total 452 yen”. He had no interest in how Riou’s voice was, nor did he care. That’s right, nobody cared about Riou. Riou pulled open the old wallet he had been using for who knows how many years.
Riou restlessly ate his lunch, collected the trash and threw it away. Then changed his clothes, brushed his teeth, washed his hands and turned off the lights to sleep. Even after turning off the lights, the room was still bright, but he didn’t pay attention as it was usual.
It was an old and small apartment. When lying down on the bed, through the cheap checkered curtains, a narrow hallway, which could not even be called a hallway, and the entrance of the room could be seen. There was a kitchen attached to the hallway, but there was not much space around the stove and the sink was located in a strange low place, looking at this place, you won’t feel like cooking. There was something like preserved foods made from the ingredients bought in a clearance sale a day before the holiday. The door opposite the kitchen was a bathroom with both bath and toilet combined together.
Currently, Riou was in a Japanese style ‘one-room’ with a sunburned bamboo tatami. There was a bed, a small desk, a TV placed like a decoration on the tatami, a colored box filled with a few clothes and a small wooden box without a lid filled with small daily necessities. That was all there was in Riou’s room.
He used to live in a slightly larger room. It was when he used to work as a system engineer at a local IT company. Riou tried to stop remembering that time.
Closing his eyes, he forced himself to not think about anything.
In Riou’s mind, there was his small room, and tomorrow’s work. That was all he needed to know. When he fell asleep, he didn’t wish for things like ‘I hope tomorrow will be a good day’, cause he knew that tomorrow would be the same as today, just like a never ending cycle.
Such days will be repeated indifferently, most likely until the day Riou died.
Just like that, Riou set out for the dream world, thinking it would be no different from his reality.
“I don’t want to be the wife of a beast even if I die. So exchange your life with me.”
This is a very strange dream, Riou thought as he looked at the person in front of him in a daze.
At first he thought it was a mirror, because the face in front of him was exactly the same as his. But it was definitely different. The way of speaking, even the movements were different. Not to mention the facial expression which differed too much. Riou had never seen his own face change expressions so frequently like this.
“Uhhh, disgusting! How dare that beast think he can touch me with his social standing? Having these wretched thoughts, damn beast!”
What kind of talk is this? Even though the one who was reprimanded wasn’t Riou, he still couldn’t help shrinking himself from the strong tone. But that guy, without any regard for Riou’s reaction, went on as if acting out a monologue.
“So, I will be leaving that beast in your care, the ‘me’ from a different world.”
(A different world…?)
Even though it was a dream, no, because it was a dream. There was no logic, no context, and nothing was understood.
Riou blankly stared in amazement at the person standing in front of him who was very similar to him. Very similar but still very different. If Riou had been able to speak with confidence like this, would he have been walking through a completely different life?
They often say that dreams are the manifestation of desires, it was hard to say if this was the case.
“Strange, aren’t you too calm?”
The guy muttered while looking at Riou. It may be because Riou hadn’t responded at all since the beginning.
It wasn’t his intention to stay calm, but anyone who saw him would come to that conclusion at a glance. Riou wasn’t particularly restricted in movement or speech, but he didn’t say anything or didn’t even move his finger. He was just listening to the guy who kept talking as if giving a speech.
Even if it’s a dream, asking things like “What’s going on?” or “What are you talking about?” would have been fine. But with Riou’s personality, those things are impossible. Interrupting someone’s talk or asking questions when you don’t understand something, these are not the things Riou is able to do.
“Hmm, if you want to survive in the country of the beasts, having this kind of strong spirit might be good.”
That guy had exactly the same face as Riou. But he had a so-called “evil face” which Riou never had since his birth. Those scornful and cold eyes, that ridiculing expression with a one-sided grin, it made Riou flinch. Of course, it can’t be seen from Riou’s appearance that he was actually frightened. Riou didn’t even move an eyebrow, but then his long bangs hid his eyes in the first place.
“When you open your eyes, you will be the fifteenth Prince of the country of Dilahanen…. But now, you’ve been degraded to being a tribute to the beast’s country.”
The contents of these smoothly said words were out of Riou’s understanding. A country he had never heard of, prince, tribute. These vocabularies had nothing to do with Riou’s life.
“There will be various inconveniences… well, it’s not like you’ll die.”
With this kind of disturbing language, Riou felt a chill go down his spine. Though it was a dream, the feeling was too vivid, Riou blinked slowly. He really wanted to wake up from this dream soon.
“What about your world? I purposely chose such a comparatively safe world. …the face looks a little worse, but it doesn’t look like you have trouble finding food.”
The guy looked at Riou and the clothes he was wearing, and nodded with satisfaction.
The clothes that Riou was wearing, it wasn’t something like a dressing gown. It was a thick grey parka and sweatpants. The neckline was slightly twisted but it wasn’t frayed or torn. It didn’t look like something a homeless man would wear, neither looked like something a wealthy person would own.
On the other hand, the guy’s clothes looked like they were tailored from the highest quality silk that would be good to touch, something that would belong to a young master. The trousers seemed to be of the same material, anyway he couldn’t tell as the coat was too long. It wasn’t a one-piece dress as he thought, but a negligee. But Riou who had no relation with these things, didn’t know these names.
The guy lifted his hand and snapped his fingers.
At that moment, a small wind blew around Riou. He reflexively closed his eyes. When he opened his eyes, he found the guy’s clothes transforming in front of him. They turned into a grey parka and sweatpants, the clothes Riou was wearing since the beginning. Then he looked down at his own body and found that before he knew, the dress that belonged to the guy was wrapped around his own body.
Completely like a magical experience, even the ever still Riou opened his eyes wide.
“Hmm. It’s kind of stiff and I’m not very comfortable. ….but it’s alright.”
The guy stretched his arms and retrieved them a few times, then twisted his body a little, as if checking the comfort of Riou’s clothes after wearing them. Afterwards, he nodded as if convinced and then faced Riou.
“It’s almost time for you to wake up. ….well, I’ll never see you again. It’s good if you could get the beast to affectionately wag its tail for you.”
As the guy said this, there was a dazzling radiance swirling around them, as if being engulfed by the morning sun.
It was dazzling to the point Riou couldn’t even keep his eyes open and had to close them quickly. But it still couldn’t stop the glaring light. He had to raise his hand to cover his eyes.
Riou thought, so this was what a light that could make you blind looks like.
Meanwhile, the guy, who had the same face as Riou but a seemingly completely different personality, disappeared into the light. Riou also started to lose consciousness.
The radiance intensified, flowing like a raging river. It swallowed Riou and then pushed him, to a far away place, somewhere unknown.
Then the dream seemed to have come to an end.
He woke up with a start.
He could tell it was daytime without opening his eyes, just from the brightness that passed through the eyelids.
The curtains in Riou’s room were the cheapest ones that could be found at a mass retailer, of course they won’t have something like a light blocking function. So the room was always lit during daytime. Riou had intended to sleep all the way to the evening, but it seemed that he had ended up waking earlier. The brightness outside was different from that of the evening.
He didn’t have to get up yet, but for some reason, his body compelled him as if wanting to wake up from a long deep sleep. Riou’s eyelashes trembled. He slowly lifted his eyelids, expecting to see the same old wooden ceiling that he always saw.
A white high ceiling entered Riou’s barely opened eyes. It reflected the sunlight, quite dazzling.
Then he moved his hand to take the thin quilt off his body, while the thin quilt that his hand touched was really thin, it also had a smooth silky feel to it. This was also quite different from the usual.
Strange, Riou noticed that something was wrong. And as he noticed, he raised his body in confusion.
At the same time, there came a strange sounding voice. The pronunciation seemed like a blend of words and the sound of the roar of a beast, it seemed to have reverberated through the throat as it came out. It was a language that Riou had never heard of before. No, it couldn’t even be called a language, it was a sound that couldn’t be pronounced. Riou raised his head as soon as he heard this ‘sound’ and took a sharp breath.
What are you trying to say? This kind of question wasn’t important right now. Instead, looking at the ‘being’ that made the ‘sound’, Riou instantly froze, just like a stone statue.
Because, what Riou was facing was actually ..a well-dressed …tiger.
Click on the number for the Translator Notes for that part.
Hey everyone~ Here’s a new novel I took up. Let me tell you what you’ll find in this one:
This is the story of a young man, who had been by himself all his life. He has a quiet personality, and even because of something that happened in the past, he gave up speaking to people. This is a story of how he finds loved ones in a whole new world and learns to speak, not just the language but also his own thoughts.
It has MC and ML not understanding anything the other says, getting used to it, understanding a little, then plot. A healing novel but with beastmen and transmigration.
PS. No matter what, it’s an HE.