Episode 1 Murder at Jouji Girls’ School
Shinjuku District, Tokyo. In the gap of this street crowded by soigne high-rise buildings, there was the Hakoniwa Detective Agency.
The western-styled house with outer walls covered by bricks grabbed the attentions of spectators; trees in the garden covered the appearances of themselves, appearing to refuse any impolite visitors.
Walking into the gigantic double doored entrance, you might have the illusion of coming into Medieval Europe. Surely, the nobles held dinner parties within this kind of house every night. The rabbit dolls with some dirt decorated on the sides of the entrance were adorable.
That was the dining room of such a detective agency.
“I think the stalker incidents have become a serious problem in Japan.”
At this moment which was suitable for afternoon tea, news commenters on the TV started their discussion.
“I can’t imagine him chasing her even after they broke up!”
“People in the world don’t think as positively as you do.”
Kujou has already finished preparing tea, and after he fixed the blanket that Akira fell on , he started being invective.
“ I am sorry about my bird brain1.”
“Oh, you have self-consciousness. That’s great.”
Although Akira’s fists trembled with anger, he seemed to care more about Yui , and turned his eye to her.
She now cared about nothing that happened in the world, focusing only on fighting with a piece of Napoleon pie that was made with many strawberries.
At approximately the same time, the oval tray made of silver fell onto his head.
“Don’t look at Miss Yui with lust, you gross kid! Anyways, you’re thinking the motions of desperately eating desserts are adorable, aren’t you??”
“You… It really hurts… By the way, how can you read my mind!”
Akira held his head and sat onto the sofa with a bitter face.
“Although Kujou works as a butler, he is also a famous detective who supports the Hakoniwa Detective Agency. It is easy for him to read your and other ordinary people’s mind.”
Yui won the mortal fight with a piece of Napoleon pie, and answered while choosing another piece.
“Eh? But I thought Yui is the one who solves all the cases.”
“I only solve the spirit-related occult events. Kujou solves all other cases. He carries out the so-called general detective businesses.”
Yui’s hands stopped choosing cakes.
“I don’t think there are cases that he isn’t able to solve.”
Hearing Yui’s words filled with trust toward Kujou, Akira showed an envious expression with a little bit of admiration. He reseated while sighing lightly.
“By the way, since when have you been able to perceive the spirits by your eyes?”
“Since I was born.”
“Oh~ That sounds great. I want that kind of special powers as well.”
“Do you think being able to perceive the spirits is special? Being unable to perceive them is common sense?”
Akira’s words clogged in front of Kujou’s sudden question.
“… I’ve never thought about it that way… ”
“Hum. Apparently, you didn’t recognize a question as a question.”
“Oh, no… That’s right… By the way, since there are more people being unable to perceive the spirits in the world, doesn’t it mean that being unable to perceive them is natural? According to common sense, isn’t it natural being unable to perceive them?”
Using Earl Grey to slightly moisten his lips, Kujou slowly opened his mouth.
“Common sense? What do you mean by common sense?”
“What? Common sense is common sense, isn’t it?”
“… Common sense… What’s common sense is what the majority believes as natural when they view matters objectively. It includes values, knowledge, evaluation criteria, and so on. According to the majority rule, when more people believe something as natural, it’ll become common sense. So far, do you understand?”
“Then, the foundation named common sense is actually unstable. What if common sense is a group of assumptions?”
“What? What do you mean?”
Kujou began his explanation step-by-step, just like an elementary teacher.
“I’ll give you a simple example. There are traffic lights at the crosswalks, right? Which color represents stop?”
“Isn’t it red?”
“Right. It’s red. Then which one represents go?”
“It’s green. Kujou, aren’t you fooling me?”
“No, that’s enough.”
Quickly, Kujou squinted his eyes.
“Then, what if they’re mistaken?”
“… What!?… What are you saying? No matter who you ask in the world, everyone will answer that red is stop and green is go. Isn’t that common sense!?”
“You have a red-letter brain. You are captivated by common sense too much. Listen to me… In fact, when humans look, they appear to look with eyes but they don’t. The electrical signals recognized by eyes are transported to the brain via optic nerves. Then at a place within the brain named visual cortex, the signals are projected as images. By doing so, humans are able to look. In a nutshell, humans don’t look with eyes; instead, they recognize things with their brains.”
“… Y… Yup…”
Unable to understand Kujou’s explanation, Akira nodded his head with confusion.
Noticing the turmoil within Akira’s brain, Kujou sighed once.
“Return to our topic. You said red was stop and green was go. That’s the outcome of recognizing the colors by brain.”
Kujou stopped for one breath2.
“Then does everyone in this word recognize the same red and the same green?”
“… What’s that… Are you saying that people view red as something besides red? Is that possible? Red is red, right?”
Discovering Akira’s turmoil, Yui hinted at the answer.
“That’s what’s called color-blindness.”
Kujou nodded with satisfaction.
“Yes, Miss Yui, just as you said.”
Akira show an enlightened expression while making a “Oh yes!” sound after he finally understood.
“I say it in advance: color-blindness is not an illness but a way to represent that condition. Within all Japanese people, it is said that there is one color-blind out of every twenty or thirty males and one out of every five hundred females. In a word, the color you think is red is a slightly different red in those people’s opinions.”
“Eh? But that’s because the color-blinds are mistaken… ”
“Who decided so?”
Kujou catechized in no time.
“The process of recognizing colors is entrusted to everyone’s brain. Then the majority of those personal sensations becomes common sense unreasonably. But… What if…”
“The brains of the majority are mistaken?”
After the tone of his voice settled down for a while, he influenced the atmosphere around him.
“The minority said the red traffic light was yellow while looking at it. How can you say they were actually mistaken? If the color believed to be red by the majority was actually yellow, believing by the minority, what the majority with color-blindness believed would become the common sense. Majority and minority. Can you prove which recognition between these two is correct?”
The silent time passed.
After a while, Yui gave a helping hand to Akira again.
“Since the recognition of colors is entrusted to everyone’s brain, under the condition of being unable to recognize the true color of red, it is unprovable in fact. I can probably say both the majority and the minority are correct. But that will bring inconvenience to this world, thus, everything is based on the majority.”
“Wonderful, Miss Yui. That’s very perceptive of you.”
While smiling, Kujou poured black tea into Yui’s tea cup.
“W, wait. Since matters are decided through the majority rule, is it okay for the common sense in this world to be so iffy?”
“It’s not something about okay or not. This is the reality”
“Eh, no. Umm… I feel like I have something in my mind, but… I don’t think I can express it well enough… ”
Akira soliloquized with his two arms crossed and head tilted.
“Then, let’s make it as a foundation and return to the root of our discussion. You said that being able to perceive the spirits was special and not ordinary. How can you perceive the spirits?”
“Even if you ask me, I can’t perceive them… Wait? I got it !! Yui, how can you perceive the spirits with your eyes?”
“By normally using my eyes to perceive them.”
While blissfully confirming the elasticity of blueberry bavarois with a fork, fidgety Yui answered.
“… By using eyes to perceive the spirits… ”
Akira muttered, finally understanding the purpose of Kujou’s prolix prelude. He clapped his hands once with the sound of “Bon.”
“Oh! The visual cortex is the part that perceive spirits!!”
“You finally understand it, dumb-ass boy.”
Kujou showed the most gorgeous smile of the day.
“The ability to view is completely determined by the optic cortex. Spirits and color are all the same. It is possible for the majority to be mistaken, and the minority called psychics to be correct. It may be better if people recognize the possibility that psychics are ordinary. Oh, I need to tell you that the common sense is not completely incorrect; however, if you only focus on common sense, you may lose the basic of matters.”
Kujou closed the discussion like that, and finished the black tea as if he was moistening his throat.
While Akira and Kujou were seriously discussing about the uncommon topic, Yui was trying to attack the montblanc made of astringent skinned chestnut silently.
What marked a period to this kind of average day of the detective agency was the bell at the entrance and the voice that seemed to belong to a middle-aged male.
1. [ bird brain – a Japanese phrase which describes a person with a head like a sieve.]↩
2. [stop for one breath – a Japanese synonym for trying to calm down.]↩