I knew that this town was crazy, but this incident was especially so. Incidents like this always catch you off guard.
A stalker with a dog chased M, a high school girl, around town before kidnapping and confining her. As he was about to assault her, M's two friends came running and subdued the man. As he was being taken away in a police car, the perpetrator suddenly bit off his tongue. He was taken to hospital, where he sadly died.
Nevertheless, this is yet another suicide. Even if you're being arrested, the act of suddenly biting off your own tongue is abnormal. It's practically martyrdom, isn't it?
The perpetrator, a 24-year-old male, was said to usually be of a gentle disposition, and would take his dog on daily walks. He never forgot to greet the people of the neighbourhood.
Did a young man like this suddenly awaken as a dangerous character? What was the reason that drove him to chase around and kidnap M? All I can say is this: the possibility exists within us all. You might be attacked, and you might be the attacker.
This was what I thought as I was walking nearby the scene of the crime. It was a perfectly average street, but if a small fissure were to open in that perfectly average space, wouldn't that fissure look ugly? They are perpetually occurring, in quiet residential areas, small parks, and around the corner of your neighbourhood's concrete walls.
The dog that was with the young man was discovered later. It had been murdered. Did the boy kill it? How ghastly.
All we can do is laugh at these ridiculous circumstances and wonder, could the same happen to me? Nobody knows just how martyrs are chosen.
M, the victim, is a second-year student at a high school in Hinashiro City. Only those who have been followed know the true terror of it, but society insists that the secret to living a successful life entails becoming used to danger. How absurd is that!? But it's true.
"I'm always being followed around. There are these guys who just follow me everywhere. Old guys, whatever. Aren't they too old for this sort of thing? I can't even trust the people I know 100%. You never know who's gonna turn into a stalker, or when. There's no way to tell them apart from other people or anything. It's like, God, even the guys trying to pick me up on the street have a thousand times better manners than that.
"It's not like telling anyone helps. Even if you tell someone that you were followed all the way home, guys're just like, oh, that must suck, and that's it. That's what it's like. Women are a bit more understanding, though.
"The guy the other day freaked the hell out of me, too. But I just kinda think, well, that's how it is. Nothing you can do about the dangerous ones. It is annoying, though. Once you start wondering if someone's following you, even as part of your daily life you start thinking things like don't look this way, don't walk this way. That's bad. Like, sometimes I get all nervous and turn around, but there's no one there.
"I'm glad my friends saved me. I don't know what would've happened to me if they hadn't been there. Even when you're used to that sort of thing, you still get really freaked out and frantic when it actually happens. He bit off his own tongue? Sorry, but what a dumbass. Serves him right. It's only natural. Die, die!"
The street nearby the scene of the crime isn't the kind of place where you'd usually expect anything to happen. It probably wouldn't be easy to kidnap a person from the residential area or shopping district without using a car at night, let alone in broad daylight. According to the victim, however, there were several suspicious-seeming people aside from the perpetrator. "Nothing like that has ever happened before, though," according to her.
Could you really say that a fissure has opened - one in the space of everyday life?
The real name of M, a high school student, is Mika Kishii. I didn't notice it while interviewing her, but they do look similar. She looks just like Kyoko Kazan, the one who died in that motorbike accident. It reminds me of when I heard that story about there being a girl student at Hinashiro High who was said to look identical to her. They must have meant her. What a weird sign.
It seems as though one of the people Mika Kishii was meeting up with to go shopping was Rumi Tohba.
Since they were in the same year at the same school, it's not out of the ordinary for them to be acquaintances, but I can't help but feel like there's something off about it.
It's probably because Mika Kishii and Rumi Tohba seem to have such opposite personalities. Mika Kishii appears to have a brightness and upfrontness befitting of her age, as well as perception.
There's a dark shadow hanging over Rumi Tohba, just like her brother Sumio... Maybe she was dependent upon him. Or has she still not escaped from under his spell?
I wonder if maybe my own delusions are starting to run too wild. But I can't tell whether they really are just delusions to begin with. This hunch just won't go away.
"Martyr" was the right word to use. I can't help but feel like that young man was instigated to do it by something.
That's what I felt when I saw the photo of the dog's corpse.
The names of Mika Kishii's two friends who drove off the stalker are Yukari Hasegawa and Chisato Itsushima. They're both third-years at Hinashiro High. The other person Mika Kishii met up with was Arisa Kahara, a first-year at Hinashiro High.