Yes my friends it is time… for Fallen Chronicles – Absolute Zero! If you’ve spent anytime between Hatoful Boyfriend and Holiday Star looking up the series, I’m sure you’ve seen Absolute Zero. It’s Anghel’s fantasy manga about his friends, Edel Blau, and so forth. You can actually get it in English now, on Moa’s Gumroad or Kindle, if you have one. It’s not necessary to read it to enjoy this chapter (it wasn’t released in English when Holiday Star was released), but you should check it out. Support Moa!
The Holy Crusade, to which brave warriors flock twice a year.
The Crimson Angel of Judecca descends upon the sacred ground.
What will he find there? The Horned Crown of Glory, or the Thorned Circlet of Despair?
What will the Fallen Angel find through the guidance of the Golden Apostle?
Again… I’ve lost… again…!
There’s the sound of shattering glass.
Why is the beauty of my craft not recognized?
His research holds no beauty.
Mere reason is not enough!
All is meaningless without the sense of an artistic soul…
So then… why…?
Why does this happen?
No, if I remain here, my genius will only rot.
I cannot allow such a loss to the world!
I am done here.
I shall find a place where I am valued for what I am!
I shall not return here.
This affront will not be forgotten.
I will have my revenge… one day.
Consider it punishment for your lack of imagination!
Remember, then, my name.
Unlike you, I have pride in the name I carry.
You will not find me using some ridiculous alias.
I am Tohri.
Aaaah… my hands are too cold to move…!
This is my last day in the library for the year.
Once I’ve put away the returned books… and written down the list of additions, I should be done, but…
What is it with this library?!
Why can’t a big-name school at least shell out for some decent heating?!
…if you have energy to be shouting at the bookshelves, you should try writing a petition.
Was I bothering you?
I can’t read with you making so much noise next to me.
Nothing goes into my head.
Please forgive my dreadful sin.
Bad language is supposed to have effects on the spiritual world…
The cold doesn’t bother you, Nageki?
I feel fine.
I see… having plumage must really make a difference.
Maybe they don’t bother with heating because all the birds are fine…
I don’t think that’s the case.
So birds are cold in here, too, then?
Well, there’s one freezing to death right over there.
I follow Nageki’s gaze, and–
I see a rather familiar-looking bleeding-heart dove, freezing to death on the floor.
Are you alive?!
Speak to me, Anghel!
Is that you… Edel Blau…?
Where is this…?
Have I fallen once more… into the Eternal Prison of Ice…?
No! Look around yourself!
It’s just an unreasonably cold library!
Do you mean to keep my fallen wings in this world, Edel Blau…?
If you are to walk with me the Blood-Stained Path of Conquest, I…
I don’t care about that!
Why are you on the verge of death in here?!
The Day of Judgement draws near.
I speak… of Ragnarok, Edel Blau…
He’s incomprehensible, as always.
The desk he was sitting at is covered in sheets of paper…
Are you drawing manga?
Great prognostications of the future!
And epics of heroes long dead.
I must complete them, and bring them to the battlefield of Gods…
It is a lonely… lonely battle.
Let’s see… he’s in the manga club, so maybe he’s working on a club zine?
Even though the festival was ages ago… how admirable!
You can do it, Anghel!
I’m sure you’ll make it on time.
But, it’s cold in here… don’t you think you should go home and work on it there?
Do you worry… for my flesh…?
…very well. Perhaps now is a time for repose, as you say.
Farewell, Edel Blau.
He happily gathers his papers and exits the library.
He comes in here quite often.
Though he would be better off working elsewhere, if the cold bothers him so.
He must have some reason…
Maybe the atmosphere in here gets him in the perfect mindset for the story he’s telling.
But bleeding-heart doves are from the Phillipines, so they don’t fare well in the cold.
He shouldn’t push himself so hard!
Later that evening…
I’m going numb!
I should have bought that blanket robe I’ve had my eye on when I was in town today!
The price will make my purse weep, but this cold makes me weep more.
Someone texted me.
Umm… it’s Ryouta.
“Meet me in town”… I wonder what’s going on?
My body is rapidly approaching its crystallization point, so I’ll head into town and avail myself of this wearable blanket on my way to meet Ryouta.
Sorry to keep you waiting!
Oh, no, I just got here.
Umm, Hiyoko… I know it’s cold, but are you sure you want to be walking around in public looking like that…?
But it’s a wearable blanket. Wouldn’t it be more strange not to wear it?
Well… I guess that’s true.
If you’re okay with it…
Hiyoko’s wearing a snuggie.
Anyway, you wanted to talk to me?
I wanted to ask you a favor.
You hardly ever ask for my help.
I’ll do whatever it is with a flash, and pizazz! So… what is it?
Do you have plans for the end of the year?
I’ve finished cleaning and everything.
Even New Year’s Eve?
I was planning to laze around all day, like always.
Hiyoko is truly a hero to women everywhere.
Would you… maybe… be willing to be a salesgirl for a day?
There’s no pay, but…
A volunteer salesgirl?
Is it at a flea market, or something?
That’s… not far off…
Do you know about Comiket?
This episode made it a dream of mine to go to comiket.
How should I explain it… it’s like a flea market, but not…
A lot of birds get together and buy and sell manga they’ve drawn with their friends.
So… sort of like the Manga Club’s booth at the festival?
Yeah, something like that.
Just… on a much larger scale.
I was wondering if you could run a booth for me.
Would you like to?
It sounds like fun. Did you draw something, Ryouta?
No, no! I’m just another salesgirl.
What does that mean?
So one of your friends asked you to find someone?
Oh… so that comic he was pouring his lifeblood into in the library is for this Comiket thing.
But why are you asking me?
He never mentioned it to me…
I’ve been a salesgirl for one group for the past three years, and somehow Anghel found out.
Textoris Melodia Funeris.
The Battle of the Gods — the Judgement draws near!
My soul has not the strength left to continue on alone.
Become my Light!
…he asked me to help him.
sounds more like he was asking you out.
That means… “I’ll be lonely on my own, so come with me”?
I think so, yeah.
But I’m already helping someone.
I can’t be in two places at once…
So you’re asking me!
What do you say? Want to?
It could be a good learning experience.
A learning experience…?
Well, you’ll certainly see some things you wouldn’t anywhere else.
It is Ragnarok, after all!
I think any name Anghel comes up with is going to be confusing, but… it does look like a battle to end all battles, at times.
I’ll need a weapon, right?!
Just tell me what to bring!
Will I want something with range, or will I be up close?!
D-don’t take it that literally!
I just meant that there can be a lot of really impatient birds with no social skills!
It can be confusing at first, so you should probably do some research ahead of time. If you search around you’ll find plenty of guides for first-timers!
Comiket lasts three days, and I think Anghel is on the third day.
The last day is always the worst, so make sure you’re ready!
Okay! I’ll study hard!
A salesgirl at Comiket… I have no idea what this will entail.
But from what Ryouta said, it may well be as hell on this Earth.
Wahahaha! My blood thirsts for combat!
Time to go home and google around for Comiket tutorials.