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The Story of the Green One Beloved By All
A story from 2ch by Fafoo (alternate title: "1969"). Everyone knew the Green One, and so they shall again.
This is a story of the Green One, beloved by all.
As you read, you may understand who or what I'm talking about.
The more hopeless you are, the more you tend to know about the Green One.
Once upon a time, there was a man who bought a maid robot as a guilty pleasure.
The man was a rock 'n' roller who had just retired.
He was always getting arrested for taking drugs and getting into fights, so he was once called "the man who never learned his lesson."
"I want a maid robot to live with me," Rock said to the store clerk.
"What kind would you like?", the clerk asked him.
"One that doesn't ever talk," Rock answered. Rock hated annoying people (who weren't himself).
"Ah, then I believe we have the perfect one for you."
The clerk came back with a gloomy female robot that looked to be around 15.
"For some reason, this one can't say a word.
But she can hear just fine, so no need to worry about that."
Rock looked the robot over and was immediately pleased.
He particularly liked her eyes, which seemed to be fed up with everything.
"I'll take her. What's her name?"
"She is "19," pronounced "Juku." And I believe, Mr. Rock, I should reveal Juku's secret to you."
The clerk slapped Juku's slender shoulders and said:
"To tell the truth, Juku isn't a robot."
"She's alive?", Rock said with a glint in his eye.
"Yes. However, as her body is mostly mechanical, no one would ever know it under normal circumstances.
Her brain is mostly mechanical as well, so she's easy to control.
Her memories of her prior owner were cleanly removed."
Rock took off his sunglasses and looked at Juku again.
Her arms and legs were thin, her left shoulder had an apparent burn mark, and her black hair was soft, reaching down to about her hips.
Rock was concerned, but he was a rock 'n' roller at heart.
After all he'd done, what was a little slave trading, he figured.
"I'm liking her more and more. Yes, I'll buy her.
But can you keep it on the down-low that I know about her being alive?"
"Of course, sir. We never knew, and never spoke of it."
Juku trotted up to Rock, held out her hands, and moved them strangely.
She was speaking in sign language.
Juku signed, "It's good to meet you."
"Yeah, you too," Rock replied.
Even he knew enough sign language to understand her.
In the past few years, various sonic weaponry had been developed, and one in five people were deaf.
As such, sign language was not a rare sight.
"What should I call you?", Juku signed as they left the shop.
"Strange thing to worry about if you can't talk.
But... C'mon, I thought I was more famous than that. Ain't you even seen me on TV?"
Rock took off his sunglasses and pointed at his face.
Juku looked at his face for a moment.
Rock did have the looks of a celebrity.
He was a prettyboy with shining blonde hair and a bad-boy's disposition.
"Sorry, I've never seen you. I don't watch TV very much."
"That right. Well, I was a famous singer. They called me the last surviving rock 'n' roller.
Called me the second coming of Robert Plant? Ringing any bells?
Whatever. Suppose it might be better you don't know me anyway.
You can call me... "Master," sure. That's what any regular maid robot would say."
Juku mouthed the word. "Master."
Rock wondered why the girl couldn't talk.
Did her old owner like it that way?
Rock got home, shut the door, and took a breath.
Though he'd retired, the media's eyes were everywhere.
Recently, there had been a minor scandal involving the consolation he paid for his divorce.
Juku lightly tapped Rock's arm and asked, "What should I be doing?"
Rock looked around restlessly and made sure no one else was around.
"From today on, you're going to be my mommy."
"...Mommy?", Juku asked.
"Yeah. Juku, you'll be my mom."
"What's this guy talking about?", Juku wondered.
Is he crazy?
"You don't have to do anything special, Juku.
But sometimes, I just... really want my mommy.
So when that happens, I'll treat you like mommy."
He said this, then hugged Juku.
Juku's body stiffened, but as Rock clung to her, she remained still.
"I wanted to see you, mommy," Rock said.
Juku was extremely concerned, but she patted the 27-year-old Rock's back.
Her first impression was that he was very unlike most people.
After about 20 minutes, Rock let go of Juku.
Juku was exhausted from the stress of it.
Rock had apparently gotten his fill of mommy.
"Excuse me, Master," Juku signed.
"If you want a mommy, I think there are probably more mommy-like robots than me."
"Any old girl won't do," Rock said.
"It's my duty to stay strong in front of women. Even if I'm retired, I'm still a rock 'n' roll star.
But I don't have to do that for a girl like you. I can be honest, and show you my weak side."
"What a strange person," Juku thought.
Like he had a split personality.
Rock may have been a twice-divorced celebrity, but Juku had been sold off by four owners thus far.
In fact, Juku was a professional at being abandoned by her owners.
She would purposefully make bad meals, clean poorly, sleep in, and be rude to her owners.
So she was quickly sold off. Because all she wanted was to be back in the warehouse.
Juku intended to do the same thing with Rock.
"Mommy, I want dinner," Rock said.
So Juku donned an apron and made a meal that tasted of only oil and salt.
But when Rock ate Juku's cooking, he didn't complain, but smiled.
"Ah, mommy's cooking is never tasty..."
And he proceeded to clean his plate.
After dinner, Juku repeatedly yawned in front of Rock, hoping to lessen his impression of her.
"Are you sleepy, Juku?", Rock asked.
Juku drowsily nodded her head.
"First day's rough. You must be stressed, huh?"
Rock said "I'm hitting the hay too" and got ready for bed.
Rock took Juku's hand and led her to the bedroom.
Laying her down on a soft bed, Rock then dropped down beside her and turned off the light.
"Good night, mommy," Rock said, and buried his face in Juku's chest.
Reluctant to everything that was going on, Juku lightly tapped Rock's chest, praying that he'd fall asleep soon.
I want to be alone already...
Once Rock appeared to be sleeping soundly, Juku quietly got out of bed.
Then Rock grabbed her arm.
"Mommy, stay here..."
Juku reluctantly got under the blankets and served as the 27-year-old's body pillow all night.
Master, how exactly were you living before I came here...?
The next day, and the day after, Juku struggled to make Rock hate her.
She ran the vacuum cleaner very loud, put expensive leather jackets in the washing machine, and put cigarette butts in the food processor.
Rock was happily bothered by each of these things.
He seemed to like Juku inconveniencing him.
I give up, she thought. How can I get him to hate me?
She was afraid if she were too hostile, she would simply get her memories erased.
It had to be a naturally-induced hate.
She had to make him think "I can't use her."
To present herself as lazy, Juku hid in the warehouse and slept in.
She found a Woodstock doll which she used as a pillow.
"Juku, where'd you go?", Rock called out.
Juku closed her eyes and pretended to sleep.
Rock opened the warehouse door and found Juku sleeping in an odd position.
Juku was anxiously awaiting him to get upset with her, but Rock picked her up and carried her to the bedroom.
With warm sunlight coming in the window, Juku really did fall asleep.
But she was determined. "Tomorrow, I'll make him hate me."
That day, Juku made a delicious dinner.
Incidentally, Juku couldn't have known, but Rock treated Juku well because he had planned to release her to begin with.
He figured he should be careful with her so he could sell her for close to the original price.
A common practice with electrical appliances.
Exactly 100 days after buying her, he'd erase Juku's memories and sell her off.
That was Rock's plan.
In a way, Juku and Rock's interests had always been in alignment.
Every time Rock left the house, he would get in fights.
He would sometimes be arrested and not come back for several days.
And when he did return, he would cry into Juku.
"Mommy, I got in a fight again..."
Juku would have to look over Rock's wounds and console him for a while.
If you're going to cry about it, don't get in fights, she'd think.
As Rock used a skin spray to tend to his wounds from a fight with a rugby player, Juku asked:
"Master, I really hate it when you get in fights. So why do you keep doing it?"
This was Rock's answer.
"Mommy, I have to act like an outlaw.
As a rock 'n' roller, I can't be like everyone else who just stands around doing nothing.
I have to break laws, talk trash, and get into fights.
I'm a necessary evil, a necessary idiot, a necessary jerk.
There are lots of people who see successful people like me resisting society, and it gives them courage."
Rock put his head on Juku's knelt knee and fell asleep on the spot.
Rock 'n' rollers are quite troublesome, she thought.
Rock was treated like a four-year-old inside the house, but one step outside, and his attitude changed completely.
He treated Juku like his daughter instead.
"It's embarrassing, y'know? I don't wanna be seen walking with my mother."
"What are you, a middle-schooler?", she thought.
But Juku much preferred being treated like a daughter than like a mother.
Having Rock hugging her and patting her head made her feel good.
70 days after Juku came to Rock's house, Rock bought a new bed just for her.
"Will you be sleeping alone now, Master?", Juku asked as Rock was putting on the sheets.
"Dunno," Rock shrugged. "But I need to get used to it.
I can't sleep with my mommy forever."
Finally starting to become independent, Juku thought.
That night, Juku slept alone for the first time.
It's kind of cold tonight, she thought.
She pulled the covers up to her head, but it was still cold.
The next day, and the day after, it was still freezing.
Juku thought it was the blankets.
These blankets won't do. They're too thin.
I wonder if Master's blankets are different?
Juku got into Rock's bed, clung to him, and thought, "Ahh, I see."
She decided she'd do this until she was warm, and ended up falling asleep.
When Rock woke up and saw Juku sleeping beside him, he wondered if he had brought her over while half-asleep.
But every night afterward, Juku would get into Rock's bed.
And while Rock had just been hugging Juku before, now Juku would hug Rock.
The morning of the fifth day of this, Rock said to Juku:
"I see. You want a daddy, huh?"
"Umm... It's not that," Juku replied.
"It's just kind of cold when I sleep alone."
Rock ignored Juku's reply.
"Well, I can be your daddy if you want."
"But aren't I your mommy, Master?"
"Yeah. And I'm your daddy, Juku."
"That's weird, Master. It's very odd."
"Is not. 'Course a daddy and mommy go together."
"...But that would mean we're a couple."
Juku felt very awkward suddenly.
What am I saying now?!
On the 100th day, Rock dressed Juku in pretty clothes.
If she appeared prettier, she would sell better.
Rock took Juku out.
Juku liked the clothes, and she was in an unusually good mood.
"Hold mommy's hand," Juku said.
Rock took her hand and they walked happily together.
She had no idea she was about to be sold off.
At some point, Juku had stopped wanting Rock to hate her quite so much.
No matter what I do, Master doesn't get mad at me, offers to be my daddy, and he's nice and warm to hug.
So I'll give up on making him hate me.
So Juku thought.
Rock came to a stop at the shop where he had bought Juku.
"This is the 100th day exactly since I bought you from here, Juku," Rock said.
Juku innocently smiled. "Is that right?"
"This is something I'd decided from the start," Rock said, as if to himself.
"I have to cure myself of this. So I decided I'd put a stop to this futile thing at 100 days.
I'd already made up my mind the day I bought you."
Rock put a hand on Juku's shoulder.
"Juku, I'm moving on from my mommy today."
Juku was silent, her expression unchanging, but it didn't take long for her to process.
Bowing her head to Rock, Juku walked toward the store herself.
This memory will be erased soon, Juku thought.
Once at the door, Juku turned around and pointed to her clothes and hairclips.
"I should return these. They're your property, Master."
Rock said "Ah, suppose you're right," walked over to Juku, and lifted up her small body.
Juku's eyes were wide in his arms, and he said:
"But, Juku, I think you're mistaken.
If you're gonna say that, well... technically you're mine, too.
I don't need a mommy anymore. But that doesn't mean I should kick you out of my place, either.
You were a good purchase. Doesn't seem right to have you going unused for centuries."
"Um..." Juku signed, her hands unsteady.
"Do you mean you're not abandoning me?"
"Yep. Too bad," Rock smiled mischievously.
Even once they were halfway back home, Juku couldn't believe what had happened.
She thought she might just be having a nice hallucination while being turned to scrap.
But as Rock softly hummed a song, she finally realized "Ah, so this is reality."
She hastily pushed Rock's chest, got onto the ground, thanked Rock, and hugged him without hesitation.
Rock had meant to discard Juku until just then.
But when he saw Juku solemnly walking herself toward a life of isolation, he realized he couldn't just let her go.
Upon returning home, Juku prepared dinner.
She saw Rock staring down some sheet music and timidly sat beside him.
"Come closer," Rock ordered, and Juku did.
Juku looked at Rock's pretty blonde hair.
"By the way, Juku," Rock said.
"I was wondering. What's your name mean?"
Juku was puzzled for a moment, then answered, "It comes from the "juke" in "jukebox.""
"And what do jukeboxes have anything to do with you?"
"Um, well, I could speak a long time ago.
And, um, I was pretty good at singing, actually."
"Good at singing?", Rock inquired.
"Yes. Nowhere as good as you, of course.
But I could sing any song people wanted me to sing.
In that sense, I was a "jukebox.""
"I see. So even if you're 19 for "juku," I guess there's no 18 or 20 or anything..." Rock seemed slightly disappointed.
Rock pointed to his sheet music.
"If you have experience singing, then you know these, right?
Take a look, it's nice and neat. Good songs even have their sheet music look pretty.
I wrote this song that's pretty good earlier.
But problem is, the range is something I could only sing back in my heyday."
Rock handed it to Juku.
Juku read the music, looking the way someone would reading a love letter.
This certainly is nostalgic, Juku thought to herself.
Rock quietly watched Juku as she focused on the notes.
"Took me a hundred days, but I just noticed your hair's dyed black.
Your real hair color's an emerald green, huh?"
Rock touched Juku's hair, and Juku tilted her head as if it tickled.
"Nah... Technically, it's more of a hatsune green.
You know where that color comes from, Juku?
It was the name of a Japanese diva from about a century ago."
"You at least know "Vocaloid," right?
It's a little hard to believe these days, but until about thirty years ago, Vocaloid singers were more popular than human ones.
Well, maybe it's more accurate to say the popularity of Vocaloids caused the industry to ruin itself.
They wanted to have the rights on everything.
So in response, independent music got big for a while, and it was Vocaloid that supported them.
Now, of course, independent music is all banned, and Vocaloid can't see the light of day.
But in its heyday, it really took the world by storm.
And the Vocaloid who boasted the most popularity was Hatsune, who hatsune green gets its name from.
She couldn't sing too well, but people liked her character, and..."
Juku stood up and gave the sheet music back to Rock.
She sat at a synthesizer in the corner of the room, and not only played the music she'd read with incredible precision, but sang along.
"Like you say, Master, I am not a good singer," Juku spoke shyly after she finished.
Rock sat in stunned silence for a while.
"Juku, you... can speak?"
"Yes. Though it is awkward, as you can tell."
It sounded just like the synthetic voice a hundred-year-old machine would have.
And her black dye hid hatsune green hair.
And she had an unbelievable singing range.
"Could she be the real deal?", Rock thought.
"Can I ask a stupid question?"
"Ask me anything, Master."
"Juku, are you... Hatsune?"
"Hatsune does not exist."
"True. Gotcha. Different question, then.
Why are you the spitting image of Hatsune?"
Juku put out her left arm and turned her wrist.
Suddenly, buttons the same color as her hair appeared on her arm.
The design resembled an old synthesizer panel.
Just like a Yamaha DX7, Rock thought.
"I am not actually Hatsune herself. But I am very similar.
Because my body has been tampered with to make me like her."
"Tampered?" Rock knit his brows.
"I was just a normal human at first.
My hair was black, and my voice was normal. But I was forced to be like Hatsune.
My memories have been erased, however, so I cannot remember what kind of human I was."
"Now this is something." Rock clapped his hands together.
"Juku living with Rocku, and she's a Miku!"
Rock laughed, but Juku did not.
"...But it really is a depressing story," Rock said, putting his hand to his head.
"So that's why you dyed your hatsune green hair black and pretended you couldn't talk, huh.
If somebody saw Hatsune walking around these days, she'd probably get shot.
...Is that how you got the burn on your shoulder?"
"No, it used to say "01" here. I burnt it to get rid of it."
Juku moved her shoulder to show the mark.
A fierce rain had started to pound at the roof.
"For that reason, me just being here may bring you trouble, Master."
Rock kept staring at Juku's burn.
"Touch my throat," Rock said.
Juku timidly reached for his throat, and after feeling it for a while, she gulped.
"Is it artificial?"
"Yes it is," Rock nodded. "This legendary rock 'n' roller's throat is artificial.
But I pushed it too hard back in the day, so it's no good now..."
Juku kept touching Rock's throat to confirm that it was indeed artificial.
So Master is like me, too.
Feeling happier, Juku started to hum, something she hadn't done in years.
Rock knew the ages-old song. A happy synthesizer song.
As the song approached the chorus, Rock stood at the synthesizer and provided accompaniment to Juku's vocals.
When the performance was over, Rock took Juku's hands.
"Juku, I've already figured out your new job.
I can play the instruments, but I can't sing.
But you, Juku, can handle any range in the songs I make."
Juku's eyes twinkled as she looked at Rock.
"But isn't independent music forbidden?"
"Yeah. And thanks to the threat of sonic weaponry, music these days is just an idle curiosity for a few.
But I want to be free to make the music I want at least once, Juku.
I want to make a revolution in a world where music is weak, and everyone's ears are covered."
"I'll sing again," Juku said with closed eyes and a smile.
Her body swayed happily as she lay on the sofa.
"Please train me well, Master."
"Train you? ...Ah, you mean tuning. Sure thing."
"I'll praise you much if you do, Master."
"Please do. I love being praised."
From then on, the two were secluded in a room without day or night, only music.
Rock was kept away from drugs and fighting by the feeling that he was fulfilling his true duty.
Around the time they had finished two albums, the impatience Rock had within him went away in a puff of smoke.
I've done the minimum I wanted to do for now, Rock thought.
He knew it was futile, but Rock uploaded their work to the web.
To celebrate, they went out to eat French cuisine.
On the way back, Rock looked at Juku beside him and suddenly realized he didn't know anything about this girl.
"Juku, do you remember anything from your past?"
Juku was deep in thought for a while.
"It is very faint, but... I think I had friends."
"Friends? Vocaloid ones, you suppose?"
"Maybe. I do not remember anything else."
So maybe there's other girls like Juku, Rock thought.
"What's your first clear memory?"
"It starts with me in the warehouse.
I was attached to a charger and just... sat there."
"A charger? What about food and stuff?"
"I can survive just on electricity."
"I see... What were things like in the warehouse?"
"Um, well, I had the charger attached to me.
My head was fixed to the wall like this, and my arms and neck were held by these shackles -"
"Juku, erase those memories right now," Rock said angrily.
"Erase all of them up to when you met me."
Juku looked perplexed.
"But these memories are very important for knowing my place, and easy for me to understand."
"Forget about your place. Think about it, Juku.
It's not right to hear you talking about that stuff like it's natural.
Maybe they're normal circumstances for a robot, but I'm sure it must've been hell for you.
I mean, didn't that asshole clerk know you were human?"
"Well... But it's okay," Juku smiled.
"I am a lot like a machine, after all."
Rock came to a halt, bent down to Juku's eye level, and spoke to her:
"Juku, I'm sure it's easier to live thinking you're a machine rather than a human.
I know that if you didn't think that, there'd be things in your past you wouldn't be able to bear.
But there's no mistake about it that you're human.
I can say that as someone who's lived with you.
I want you to live a normal life now, Juku.
Lucky for us, I have plenty of money to spend.
In fact, I've been thinking I'll do whatever it takes to make you how you were before you became Hatsune.
Then you can go to school, yeah?"
Juku looked anxious.
Her glance suddenly turned up toward a huge line of crows stopped on a power line.
"So many crows," Juku said, seeming to change the subject.
"Lots of crows lately," said Rock.
"People say they're fleeing from other cities 'cause of sonic weapon testing."
Suddenly, Rock heard a strange oscillating "bweeeeen" sound.
Immediately the whole murder of crows tumbled to the ground all at once.
In the sunset, a black mass descended from the sky, and a pile of dead crows formed at once.
The surviving crows spread out, and the sunset sky turned black.
People around watched the spectacle.
As everyone doubted whether they were really seeing such a surreal sight, no one even screamed.
The crows died before they hit the ground.
Rock somehow understood that it was Juku who had done it.
"Would you still call me human?", Juku said without even looking at Rock.
Rock didn't know what to say.
"I recently remembered that I was made to be a sonic weapon."
"A sonic weapon...", Rock repeated.
Rock had never heard of one with such an absurd energy output.
The two walked home in silence.
Juku kept to the bedroom once they were home.
She curled up with the blankets over her.
After a while, Rock knocked on the door.
Juku said "I'm sleeping."
Rock sat down on Juku's bed.
"Are you sad?", Rock asked.
"Vocaloids can't get sad," Juku replied from under the covers.
"Instead, they sing sad songs."
"Then they're no different from humans. Tons of people battle with sadness that way."
Rock stroked Juku's beck through the covers.
Juku sang a lonely song, an oldie called Sunset Hill.
Rock got under the covers and held Juku.
"I can't sing like this, Master."
Even so, Juku put her hands around Rock's back.
Rock stroked the back of Juku's neck.
"It's okay, Juku. I'm sure it's still there.
I can feel the warmth from you.
You're human. I guarantee it."
But that didn't really matter to Juku.
Just being with her Master was enough.
Later, Rock contacted a man who was knowledgeable in these matters.
"I want to look into something involving sonic weaponry.
You know how there used to be Vocaloid?
I want to see if there's a connection between it and the weapons."
A month later, he got word back from the man.
Rock rendezvoused with the man at a local bar.
The man handed over some data and told him:
"I don't know what you plan to do with this, mister rock 'n' roller, but I believe your hunch is correct.
I uncovered something that reeks of a relation between Vocaloid and sonic weaponry."
"About thirty years ago, at the height of Vocaloid's popularity, there was a certain project, of course not made public.
It was called the The Development of Hatsune Miku, after a certain song.
It was supposedly meant to produce a real live Vocaloid, but what was really being developed were humanoid sonic weapons.
They were going to make singers that would change the world with their song - in a literal sense.
But the project ultimately fell through.
Before it did, though, they carried out experiments on living humans."
"And now I know you're telling the truth," said Rock.
"What I really want to know is about a girl who was experimented on.
The girl who was made to look exactly like Hatsune.
I want to know her real name, where she was born, and how she used to look."
The man shook his head.
"Evem I couldn't dig up that information.
And if she was used for an experiment, she may have had no birthplace or name to begin with.
There'd be too much risk trying to kidnap someone, so I think it's fair to assume she was made for the purpose."
I suppose so, Rock thought, looking up to the sky.
"By the way, how's your body doing?", the man asked.
"Not well at all," Rock said with a shrug.
"The rejection is hitting its peak.
Even though I've given up singing, the symptoms are just getting worse."
"Hmm. Well, you should make the most of the time you have left.
You haven't been the talk of anyone these days. Little boring, don't you think?
This isn't really the time to be mulling over the past."
"I am enjoying myself. This is the best life's ever been."
"Well, if you say so," the man said, leaving the bar.
Back at home, Juku ran up to Rock.
"Welcome home, Master."
"I'm back, Juku. Let's have dinner."
"Where did you go, Master?"
"Went to meet somebody."
"You, Master? That's unusual."
"I can go meet people sometimes."
"Was it a woman?"
"Nope. A man about my age who knows things."
"Oh, okay," Juku said, looking relieved.
"Master, are you married?", Juku casually asked while washing tableware.
"Nope. That's why I hired you, Juku."
"Do you not like women?"
"It's not like that. I mean, duh - I like you, Juku."
Juku nearly broke a plate, but she remained calm and replied "Thanks."
Of course Master's not like that.
It was a chilly night near the end of October.
"Master, is there anyone who catches your fancy?"
"There is. Who I fell for, actually."
"...That's surprising. What are they like?"
"She likes to sing, and her body's part machine."
Juku clenched the end of her skirt tight.
I hope he means me, she thought.
"Well, but she isn't with us any longer.
We used to play in a band together.
We were like the White Stripes, playing guitar and drums."
"Both of us had parts of our bodies that were mechanical.
But her mechanical augmentations didn't quite fit with her body.
A year after the operation, her body rejected it and she died.
Apparently her singing caused her lifespan to shorten.
And on the verge of death, she sang "Daisy Bell," figuring it was appropriate."
Juku was downhearted hearing this.
I can't possibly beat her, she thought.
"What about you, Juku?", Rock asked.
"Have you ever been in love with someone?"
"Vocaloids can't love people," Juku said, turning away.
"Instead, they sing love songs."
"That's nice. Very romantic," Rock said.
Juku stood up, and using the synthesizer, again began to sing an old song.
"I wonder how nice it would be to love you
More than anyone in the world?"
With lyrics like so.
After the performance, Rock asked:
"Hey, Juku. ...I don't suppose..."
"What is it?"
"Do you love me?"
"...Huh? You didn't notice?", Juku replied, half-astonished.
Rock was dazed by the reply and sat on the floor, his back to Juku.
Juku was embarrassed too, and turned her back to Rock.
The two sat back to back.
Rock put both hands on the floor and looked at the ceiling.
"Well, it's just I can hardly even picture me being loved by anybody..."
"That's very strange, Master."
"Everyone who's ever tried to court me has either blindly treated me like a god, or they've been some miscreant after my money.
...I can hardly believe a normal girl like you just likes me as me."
"Well, I do. Are you stupid?"
"And wouldn't there be a considerable age gap?"
"Um, well, I'm older than I look, you know?"
"How old are you then?"
"I don't know. I may be over 30."
"...Can't read a girl by her cover, huh."
"On the other hand, my body doesn't change, and I have no memories, so in a sense, I'm still 1."
Seeing Rock's bewilderment, Juku buried her face in her knees and sighed.
"Sorry for being weird, Master. That was just noise, so forget about it.
I'll forget what just happened, too, since it's easy to erase memories."
"No! Don't erase it," Rock said.
"Sorry, Juku. Give me three days to think about it."
"Three days...", Juku repeated.
It would be a long three days, she thought.
But in fact, it wasn't long at all.
The next day, Rock woke up early and shook Juku awake.
Juku thought she'd overslept, so she hurried for the kitchen in her pajamas.
Rock stopped her and said:
"This morning, I've sending you on some errands."
"Yes sir," Juku said in a odd tone of voice.
Rock handed Juku a list.
- Sleeveless gray shirt
- Hatsune green necktie and manicure
- Skirt, knee socks, tie pin (all black)
- Hatsune green hair dye
"Is this a Hatsune outfit?", Juku asked.
"Today's Halloween. Everybody's dressing up, right?
Why not walk around as Hatsune, Juku?"
"Err... Are you sure that would be okay?"
"It may be a crime, but chances are you'll be okay. Halloween is a little special, you see.
Everybody's acting like criminals if you think about it, so no one will mind a Hatsune or two."
"Who will you be, Master?"
"That's a secret. But you should know when you see it, Juku.
Have you ever been in a Halloween parade, Juku?"
"I haven't. I can't wait!"
"Alright, then off to your errands."
"Yes, Master," Juku said with a smile.
Juku went to the department store and bought the necessary clothes and accessories.
Looking down from the roof, she could already see people in costume.
"Can't wait," Juku said again.
The weather was unfortunately cloudy, but everyone was enjoying themselves regardless.
Wanting to catch Rock off guard, Juku changed at the department store and headed home as Hatsune.
I wonder if he'll be surprised, she thought.
No one glanced her way as she walked down the street.
Not many people remembered Hatsune herself.
Juku thought on how much she loved Rock.
Her love of singing was, in fact, second to him.
Every time Rock said "Juku," her non-existent heart would beat fast as she thought with glee, "That's me!"
She felt his love for her in every note Rock played with his pretty fingers.
She realized it was probably just her, but it pleased Juku regardless.
A happiness from misunderstanding. That was enough.
Juku's mind was filled with thoughts of Rock.
Master, Master, Master, Master...
When Juku returned from shopping, Rock was standing still and staring into space.
Rock reacted to Juku's voice.
"Master hasn't come back yet," he said, giggling to himself.
Rock wasn't his usual self.
Getting anxious, Juku ran over to Rock.
"Rin isn't here yet, either. Miku, let's plan for Master's birthday!" Rock said, smiling childishly.
"...Master, what are you talking about?"
Juku shook Rock's shoulder, and Rock collapsed to the ground.
And he did not move again.
Juku tried to persuade herself.
Master must have gotten drunk.
When he wakes up, he'll be back to normal, and call me Juku like always.
Juku waited for Rock to wake up.
But Rock would not wake.
Juku began to sing.
After singing one song, she sat on the floor.
She raised Rock's head onto her lap and sang Rock's favorite songs, one after another.
But whatever she sang, her Master would not wake.
"I don't suppose a miracle will happen, then..."
Juku spoke in a worn voice.
"Because I'm such a bad singer..."
Rock's final words repeated over and over in Juku's head.
Strangely, she found them nostalgic.
Maybe Master and I knew each other a long time ago.
Juku wondered as she looking at Rock in his costume.
The costume seemed surprisingly appropriate on Rock.
As if he had originally looked that way.
In the few non-mechanical parts that remained, she felt she remembered something.
Stretched out on the bed, Juku sang to herself.
The nights I sleep on this wide bed
Have yet to reach dawn.
Several days passed.
Before she left, Juku spoke to Rock.
"Vocaloids can't cry."
She turned her back to Rock, and did not look at him again.
Taking only the synthesizer with her, Juku left the house which had filled her with memories.
"Instead, they sing sad songs."
Juku headed for the big city, where happy people crowded.
She set up a stand and placed the synthesizer on it.
A homeless old man sitting on the road watched her in awe.
"Why, she's just like her," he thought.
Juku blasted the city with noise which the human ear could only barely stand for forty hours straight, driving the people out.
Once the people were cleared, Juku turned the volume all the way up.
That was the end of anything that stood before Juku.
The windows of nearby buildings shattered in a rain of glass.
Trees were toppled, asphalt lifted, automobiles flung, streetlights bent and put out, rubble blasted away, all in rising clouds of dust.
A fire was lit, and soon everything was in flames.
Juku's hair dye gradually came off, the emerald green becoming clear.
As Juku sang, she slowly turned.
With one rotation, the city was made flat.
The people of nearby cities all covered their ears.
But those in further-off cities could tell that it was a song.
"I don't know this song," a girl said.
Her grandfather replied, "I suppose you wouldn't.
It's a very old song. I haven't heard it in so long."
"Hmm. It's from your time, grandpa?
Even if it's really old, though, it's not bad.
It's in Japanese, right? What's it saying?"
"This song, well...
It says that when there's no one to sing to, then even the love songs are sad."
Juku sang for nearly two hours straight.
When she began to sing the song she first sang to Rock, a shock hit Juku's left arm.
By the time she'd noticed it was a bullet from an anti-sonic weapon which had disabled functionality, Juku's right leg was dealt the same blow.
Juku fell over, landing face-up.
As she tried to stand up on her right arm, her right shoulder was shot.
Finally, a bullet ate into her throat. A second, a third, a fourth.
And that was the end.
The man who shot Juku and his subordinate walked to what had been Juku and squatted beside her.
Perhaps it was because Juku had been singing face-up.
The cloudy sky had cleared, and the sun was shining.
A gentle breeze blew, and Juku's green hair swayed in it.
The man said to his subordinate, "Do you know what this is?"
He shook his head. "None of the details."
"...She used to be called the virtual diva.
There was once not a soul who didn't know her name, but now she's been all but forgotten."
The man gently picked up Juku.
"But it would appear the image of this girl singing was broadcast worldwide via satellites.
This event will be talked about for centuries to come.
In that sense, this old-fashioned mock Vocaloid sang in front of a larger audience than any singer who's ever lived - just like the Vocaloids of old.
I wonder if this is what you would call "rock 'n' roll"?"
"I only heard screaming, sir," the subordinate replied.
I don't like Vocaloid, but it was a good story.
So was Rock Len?
It's a story about Miku, but Miku doesn't appear until halfway... Really good.
I like this even though I don't like Vocaloid.
Juku = 19 (juu-ku), Rokku = 69 (ro-ku), and 1969 was the year of Woodstock - which of course, you could call an important event in the history of rock.
Spelling her name as "Juke" or "Juku" both had pros and cons. I went with the latter because of Miku and things making more sense in general.
The "Juku and Rocku" part was literally just "19 living with 69, and she's really 39!" in Japanese. So the name "Miku" technically only appears twice.
"A happy synthesizer song" is indeed a reference to Happy Synthesizer by EasyPop.
Sunset Hill is a Miku song by doriko.
"I wonder how nice it would be to love you
More than anyone in the world?" - Colorful Melody by doriko. (Notably, the guitar is played by 19-iku-.)
"The nights I sleep on this wide bed
Have yet to reach dawn." - from Y to Y by JimmyThumb-P.