Mihashirabō Presents "Mind Your Decisions"
rating: +11+x

The storyteller walks into stage from the left, and sits down on the pillow at the center, facing the audience. He closes his eyes.

“What do others think about me? This is a question that has plagued many throughout all times, throughout all ages. We can’t help but wonder about that which we don’t know; it’s but human nature. Have I wronged a stranger? Do I make my friends happy? Are my parents proud of who I’ve become? The questions pile and pile, yet remain unanswered.”

“But what if they were to be answered?”

The storyteller opened his eyes.

“This is the story of Sachi, who had arrived late to her own father’s wake.”


“I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I’m so, so sorry.”

“It’s ok, it’s ok. It wasn’t your fault.”

That’s what the brother said, but Sachi knew different. The disappointment was palpable, and how could the brother not be disappointed? Sachi needed only to get to the wake in time; she didn’t even pay a single yen for it… And she couldn’t even do that one minuscule thing right. If pops was still alive, she thought, he would be scolding her now.

But he wasn’t.

One thing, Sachi. One damn thing.


“Look sis, if you want to apologize to someone, apologize to father, not me. Maybe that'll get the weight off your shoulders.”

"To father?"

"Yeah. If anyone would be annoyed at you being late somewhere, it'd be him. Especially if it's his own funeral. So go talk to him, or at least go see him. It'll be a better use of your time."

And with those words, the brother left with a pit-pat, feet brushing against the delicate floorboards. Sachi could tell it was shame; the kind of shame and embarrassment one feels when defending a misbehaving child.

She was a misbehaving child. All her life she’d been one. But brother had a point; she had barely spent any time with father. This was his day, not hers. She needed to at least see him and, given the chance, apologize for disappointing him this one last time.

With a ka-shank, Sachi opened the door to the funeral hall. There, on the opposite end of the room, surrounded by flowers and unlit candles…

The coffin.




Sachi walked through the sea of empty chairs, steps lacking confidence as she approached her late father. Sachi felt as though the walk had taken her hours, but it couldn’t have been more than a minute.

“Hey… Dad…”

“It’s uh, it’s been a long time, hasn’t it? Ten years since we last talked. Wish it had been under better circumstances, but…”

“You could have at least called, you know? After mom’s passing, you went silent. No congratulations on getting into college… No reprimands on dropping off it. You never visited me or my brother. You just kept working, and working, and I saw less and less of you.

… As I was coming here, I kept thinking about how I’d confront you… What I would say for the vigil… Before I knew it, I was driving in circles, waiting for the moment to pass. I think I could have missed the funeral entirely if I had tried enough, but I just couldn’t. I needed to confront you, and brother, who knew I would try my hardest not to come, and your siblings, who never cared for me, and your new wife, who you didn’t even have the decency of introducing to us. You had what, eleven, twelve years to do it? Why couldn’t you just… Do it, get that weight off your damn back?!”


“I wish I knew what was going on inside your head… What is it that made you think this was the best for us… Or was it maybe only the best for you? Because it sure felt that way.”

Sachi rested her head on the coffin, feeling a mix of ease and defeat, knowing that her words all fell in empty, long dead ears. It didn’t matter, of course; this was all symbolic. A last childish outburst, the likes of which father was so accustomed to. A calm silence befell the room for a couple more minutes, which Sachi savoured. A bittersweet taste.

Sachi prepared to leave, turning around when she noticed the doors had closed. She certainly left them open when she entered. Oh no, had someone spied on her as she argued with her dead father? For an instant, she wondered what she would say to her brother, the most likely perpetrator, and what he would think of her, when all candles in the room suddenly — Fwoosh — all lit up. A crrrrakkk sound followed the lights turning off at the same time, and before Sachi could prepare for it, a voice came from within the coffin:

”He was ashamed. How could he not be? You two always loved your mother oh so much. What was he supposed to do? Be honest? No one is. Oh no, no one ever is.”

“E-eh? Who’s- Who’s there?”



”Ah, sincere apologies. I didn’t meant to scare you.”


”I’m a god that goes by the name of Sato, and I listen to the wishes of the commoners, like you. I could not help but see you’re suffering, child, and that’s wrong. A funeral is a place of suffering, of grief, but not because of restlessness; not because of unfinished business. As such, allow me to help you in this moment of weakness, for I can grant you that divine ear that, deep in your heart, you wish you had.”

“A-ah, t-this…”

Sachi couldn’t speak. The figure in front of her was terrifying, but something about it felt… Innocent. Calm. Could she trust it?

”I understand if you cannot trust me. I have only come to offer my help. If you need not my assistance, then I’ll depart.”

The entity swiftly returned to the shadows, disappearing from sight. The lights turned on, and the candles were blown with a sweesh kinda sound. As soon as it had come, the god had left.


But it was too late.

There was no further response.

Several weeks have passed.

“Sachi, can you come over here?”

“Yes, boss?”

“What is this?”

“Um, the… The drinks section…boss?”

“Yes, the drinks section. And what’s this?”

Several empty drink cans, and empty snack wrappings.

“… Ah.”

“‘Ah’ indeed. Look, I’m not gonna repeat myself so just… Just make sure no one else shoplifts, alright?”

“Y-yes sir.”

Ask him the question. You know you have to. You will not sleep tonight unless you do so.

“Will this be deducted from my pay?”


“It will depend on your performance for this month. This does leave a stain on your record, but I think if you prove yourself and work hard enough, I can let things like this pass.”
Of fucking course it’s coming out your pay. Are you actually an idiot?

“Wait, what?…”

“Something wrong?”

“Oh, uh, no, nothing. Sorry.”

“O…kay. We’re done here then. Go back to work.”

“… Right.”

… What was their name? Something with Sa… Sato?

”That is my name, yes.”

“Gah! What the- What the hell?!”

”Why the surprise, child? I thought you had mentioned my name and thus knew I was around.”

“I… Heard my boss’s thoughts while at work and I couldn’t- It didn’t make sense why I could but… The only bizarre thing to ever happen to me was during dad’s funeral, when you appeared, so…”

”A logical approach. Quite different from the emotional child that called to me on the day of her father’s wake.”

”And yet, it is emotion that brought me back. So, child, have you accepted my gift?”

Had Sachi wondered what her boss was thinking about at that moment, and that is why the god willing to grant her answers had reemerged? Deep down, she knew her boss thought of her as nothing but garbage, a contrast to the dismissive, faux friendly personality of his. It was clearly fake, and now she knew for sure. In a way, that comforted her.

But that didn’t mean she wanted to know anyone else’s thoughts.

”It doesn’t mean that, of course, but you didn’t know what the divine ear gift truly was, so I graciously decided to give you but a taste. Maybe you would now understand whether or not you wished to proceed. You had your doubts back then, and even regretted not truly thinking calmly about it, no?”

Of course they knew exactly what she had been thinking.

“So… What does this mean, then? Do I… Do I get this power?”

”Only you can answer that.”

“Can’t you read my mind?”

”Ah, but I cannot extract an answer if you haven’t made up your mind, no?”

Ah, he had a point.

”Of course I do.”


“… Very well. I accept your help. I wish to know what others think of me. What my brother and my family and my co-workers and friends and everyone and anyone else have in their minds. This is the gift you were offering me back then, no?”

”Yes, that is what I wished to grant you. And that is what I will grant you, then. Close your eyes for but a moment, Sachi, and when you open them, your life will be changed anew.”

Sachi closed her eyes, wondering if this was a good idea. This god always looked scary, but their voice only made her feel safe, she could not distrust that who wanted to help her in



Sachi opened her eyes.


“What happened to my sister, doctor?”

“It’s difficult to say. The symptoms are similar to cerebral infarction, but we can’t be sure. Did your family have a story with seizures?”

help me

“No, not… Not really.”

help me

“I see… Well, we’ll continue the exams, and we’ll inform you of any developments during-”

help me

“Is she stable then? What- What can you tell me?”

help please

“She’s stable… And she has responded to audio cues, but…”

“… But?”
at least

“Sorry, but we just don’t know. We’ll keep you updated.”
at least make the screams stop



Thus our story ends.

The storyteller bows twice towards the crowd, then carefully gets up, brushing off his clothes. The play is finally over.

“I hope this story has resonated to you all, at least in some way. If you have encountered such a situation, I hope you knew better, and if you haven’t, now you know.”

The storyteller puts on the Satori mask one last time.


”Do never listen to the words of a demon. They’ll say anything to get you! Kehehehehe!”

The storyteller puts the mask down, bows one last time, then walks off stage through the right.
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