I’ve been reading this story for a while and really loved it. I saw recently that the 2nd volume as well as a crossover with Overlord was released for this story, got super excited, and speed-translated this in the 4 days. I don’t know how the upload schedule will look, as I don’t have a schedule anymore, but I will continue to translate as much as I could. Though the chapters are super long…Chapter 1: Beginning and Choice
By the time I realized it, I was standing smack dab in the middle of a field and wearing my stupidly lame pajamas.
The design had yellow cat-like creatures on it…..
No, wait, were they tanuki?
Anyways, the faces of these mysterious yellow creatures were printed close together, creating a pattern. This was my cheaply-made, long-sleeved, blue pajamas.
It was pretty awful-looking.
This was definitely not the type of pattern a prospective youth should be wearing on their sleepwear.
Well, whatever. These were the pajamas I bought myself.
I bought it last week when a cart was having a sale at my neighbor shopping mall. Probably because it didn't look like there would be buyers, it was priced as dirt cheap.
One of the reasons I bought it was the cheapness of the price. But more than that, these pajamas no one would choose among the others, these pajamas with such ugly cats…..hm? Were these perhaps pigs? Anyways, I felt some kind of pity towards this animal.
……But, I would like you to wait a bit. The issue surrounding the lameness of my pajamas had nothing to do with the problem at hand.
The problem of why I was standing in the middle of this field.
I believe I was sleeping in my futon back in my own home, but…
“Where the heck is this? Is this…a dream….?”
The sun had risen quite a bit in the sky already.
The field I was standing in the middle of was an open meadow encircled by groves of broadleaved trees.
If I were to put it simply, it would be a circular plain surrounded by trees.
Even though I was calling it a field, it wasn’t that wide. The diameter of it, I believe, was roughly around 15 meters. The ground was covered with a plethora of weeds.
As I was ascertaining my surrounding situation, I was suddenly struck with sense of discomfort around my feet.
The area around my feet was not overgrown with grass.
As I wasn’t wearing any shoes, the soles of my bare feet…felt freezing cold.
It wasn’t dirt either. It felt like concrete, or even stone.
When I causally dropped my gaze—
“Woah, what the hell is this!?”
Startled, I unintentionally shouted.
The place I was standing was on top of a blood-red stone floor.
Furthermore, an ominous, circular geometric pattern was drawn on it.
This enigmatic circular formation— its diameter was roughly 150 centimeters.
From what I could see, it appeared to be a magic array.
That’s right. It certainly was a magic array.
I didn't really know any other suitable name to call this mystery circle at my feet.
However, no matter how you look at it, it didn't appear to be the ones used as a medium in those magic-filled fantasy worlds.
What was an adequate expression to describe this? If I had to say, it gave off the image of a devil-worshiping cult using this in their human sacrifice rituals. It was clear from the first glance that this was an ominous magic array.
Red lines were painted, though I didn't know of what kind of paint, in close proximity to each other in intricate patterns, like a bunch of snakes had slithered around the circle. Furthermore, minute patterns were engraved in the minuscule blank spaces of these lines.
Even if this was meant to be some kind of graffiti, it still must have taken a lot to make it.
I didn't really get it, but the one who drew all of this must have been really tenacious. How scary.
Moreover, why was I the one standing in the middle of it? Even more scary.
To tell you the truth, I had a bad feeling about this.
With that being said, the info I had of my current situation….was scarce.
To put things bluntly, I knew nothing besides the fact that I was standing in the middle of a mysterious circle with my lame pajamas.
Whether this was my dream or what not, I would not figure anything out unless I left this stone circle and checked my surroundings. Plus, I wasn't sensing anyone else around.
Or rather, I didn't want to remain standing on this creepy thing for another second longer.
If this was my dream, there was a really high chance that I was heading straight towards the route where I would be turned into a living sacrifice to be offered in order to resurrect an evil god.
I tried to take one step off of the circular formation.
Hm, what was this? At that moment, something like an invisible wall came into contact with my feet.
I wasn't really sure if ‘wall’ was the correct term for this.
Like a membrane of thick static electricity, I felt some relatively strong resistance…. Such an incomprehensible force-field thingy was running along the outside of this circular formation, surrounding me.
Eh, wait a sec. Does this mean….I’m trapped in here?
Give me a break. I pressed my palms against the invisible wall and forcibly try to push through it.
—In the very next moment, the resistance pushing against my palms anticlimactically vanished.
Losing this bearing, I staggered a few steps forward, tottering on top of the stone floor. With this forward momentum, I left the circular formation.
All of a sudden, the smell of grass filled my nostrils.
The sunlight on this clear day entered my field of vision, causing me to feel a bit dizzy.
The breeze suddenly brushed against my cheek as I felt like I’ve just been born.
Like when you surface after swimming, all five of my senses were overwhelmed.
It appeared that the invisible wall from before even blocked outside stimuli as well. As of right now, I had no idea on what principle that worked, but this sensation had no other explanation other than that.
At the same time, the presence of air, the warmth of sunlight, the rustling of grass underneath my feet felt too real as they flooded my five senses. All of them strongly hinted at the only possible reason for all of this.
Simply put: somehow, for some reason, this wasn’t a dream…..
Well, whatever the case may be, I was just glad I got out.
If standing on top of an evil magic array wearing lame pajamas and being imprisoned by a mysterious misty barrier was a joke, it would cause more than a mental breakdown. It would be torture.
If I had remained in that situation for a whole hour, I probably would’ve started crying.
Of course, I would be at my wit’s end being in such a baffling situation.
But, to be honest, I wasn't really feeling any sense of danger here. Even though I had no basis, I just got the naive feeling that everything would work out well in the end.
At the very least, I could say that this field felt very peaceful.
The sky was blindingly blue.
The whole area was quiet. I couldn’t sense any people or animals around; even the sound of birds couldn’t be heard. I got the feeling that I was the only living thing around here.
The sun's rays felt nice on the skin. The breeze was nothing but gentle. If I ignored that evil magic array, I would’ve thought I came to enjoy a picnic.
In this relaxed state, I surveyed the surrounding trees and—
My eyes landed on one spot.
This grove of trees was growing in this meadow, but just that area was unnaturally different.
From what I had seen, it was an auburn rock face.
There was a single open cave on it.
I wasn’t sure if this was natural or man-made.
The inside of this hole was dark, so I couldn’t make out what it looked like inside.
All I could tell was that this was an empty, dark hole.
A hole…that a person…could pass through.
At this moment, it felt like some kind of switch was flipped as a strange buzzing gradually filled my head.
A hole…a person…could pass through.
Someone must pass through? I, I must…..?
I surrendered to this sudden, intense urge.
A terribly intense urge. You could even call it an obsession.
I want to go into that hole.
A reason….? I don’t know. Even I couldn’t come up with a reason for this urge.
However, I could no longer avert my gaze from the cave.
For some reason, I couldn’t think of anything else to do but enter.
I began to walk towards the cave entrance.
It was like an unidentifiable irritation burned through me.
I clumsily tried to suppress this urge to start running, but my pace quickened regardless as I continued towards the cave.
10 more meters till I reach the entrance. I wanna enter already.
5 meters. Hurry up. Come on.
2 meters. My impatient feet stumble.
4 more steps. 3. 2. 1.
—I was too impatient that I stubbed my pinky toe with my current momentum on the cave entrance.
A famous person had once said that there were three times in a man’s life when he was allowed to cry.
The first was when he loses his father.
The second was when he loses his mother.
….Finally, the third was when he stubs his pinky toe on the corner of a dresser.
I crouched on the ground, screaming, and lay in agony.
Remember, this wasn’t the corner of a dresser. This was the corner of a cave.
My field of vision was narrowed because I was in a crazed state. On top of that, the cave entrance was only wide enough to fit one person. Of course, I would stub my foot. Plus, I was barefoot!
And I stubbed it with all that momentum. Ow. Ow. Ow! Tears would no longer come out.
After lying on the floor for some time, I slowly stood up, trembling.
Yes, trembling like a newborn fawn.
I timidly checked my pinky toe’s condition.
The pain was enough to kill me, but it didn’t look like I had broken any bones or anything.
Oh? I suddenly realized something.
Even though I had been so adamant about entering the cave not too long ago because of that intense urge, that same urge had completely disappeared for some reason after taking damage to my pinky toe.
This was truly a mystery. Really what was all of that before?
I was not the type of person who would skip out on thirds of a meal over cave exploration. And I definitely didn’t have a cave fetish or anything like that.
But, it really did feel like entering the cave would be the culmination of my life.
Wow, I don’t want that kind of life. I was glad I came back to my senses.
Now that I could think properly, I peeked through the cave entrance I stubbed on toe on.
It was too dark to make anything out.
Oh, I can see a light shining through on the other side.
So, this was like a tunnel. I could make it go through it then.
It looks like there was some distance from here to the exit, but I don’t think it could be that far.
I took a few steps back and took a better look at the auburn rock face the cave was carved into.
Aside from the tunnel, it was nothing else but a vertical rock face, so in other words, a cliff. The height was high enough that you would probably faint if you climbed it all the way. I estimated that it was taller than 10 meters.
Here was when I noticed the breadth of this cliff.
This auburn cliff stretched as far as my eyes could see.
The cliff curved inside and it continually stretched farther and farther—
Now that I looked more closely, it encircled the entire area.
To summarize, I was in the center of an incomprehensible basin surrounded by an auburn cliff and isolated from the outside world.
Well, it was not guaranteed that I’ve been isolated. At the very least, there was the tunnel. I imagined that this acted as a passageway connecting the inside basin to the outside.
The basin’s area resembled the inside of Tokyo Dome….wait, this was much bigger.
No, this was several times larger than Tokyo Dome, though I don’t know by how much.
Hmm….I really don’t know. Now that I’ve rethought this, I’ve actually never been to Tokyo Dome. So, of course I wouldn’t know. Why did you even bother using Tokyo Dome as a reference, past me?
This place was a perfectly circular basin, several times larger than Tokyo Dome, and surrounded by an auburn cliff. There was a small tunnel in the cliff side that connected to the outside, and at its entrance stood a lonely, barefoot male wearing lame pajamas.
There were no signs of any other living creatures. The air felt nice. The sky was clear and very beautiful.
This was all the valuable information I’ve established from my investigation.
In the end, I still hadn’t identified the reason of why I was here, the cause, or any countermeasures….
There were at least 2 choices for me to take.
One course was to continue through the tunnel and make it out on the other side. Well, at the very least there would be one certainty that would arise from this decision. That was, my past self would be absolutely elated that I would be entering the hole.
The other course was to return back to the magic array for the time being and investigate the basin once more. This choice would prioritize trying to understand my current situation.
Because the inside of the tunnel was dark and couldn’t be made it, it was unsettling. However, if we were to speak about unsettling, the magic array was on its own level. Rather, visually speaking, it broke the limit of being unsettling.
In short, both were pretty bad. What should I do….
I was only hesitant for a second. For the time being, I decided to return back to the field with the magic array.
There wasn’t any particular reason for doing so. It was just that I didn’t really get a chance to get a good look around the magic array because I suddenly wanted to enter the cave. I felt like I probably overlooked a bunch of things. Since that was on my mind, I decided to go back and take a look. It was that frivolous of a decision.
If you called it a whim, you wouldn’t be wrong.
What did you expect? This wasn’t really a major fork in the road. The difference between the two was as short as the distance from your eyes to your nose. The questions were really which do I investigate first and which do I postpone for later. Simply that. Just an order of events.
Well, that was supposed to be the case.
I turned on my heels and began to walk back to the meadow.
Carefreely back to the tranquil grove.
I will encounter numerous crossroads of fate in the story that will unfold from this point onward.
And the appearance of these choices will always be sudden.
However, now that I look back at it, the moment that could be called the junction of all of this, the point where I made the most important choice….would have to be this one here.
—The decision to not enter the tunnel at this moment and casually head back to the magic array.
Just simply that.
There was no grand reason or any thought really that went into it.
But, what was terrifying was that everything that occurs following after this, all the events that occur in the following pages, began with this one decision.
The Wheel of Fate let out a grand creak before beginning to reverse.
 Anyone one else getting really strong The Enigma of Amigara Fault feels here?