Oneshot : Liar Game roots of A
Liar Game roots of A
==Going back to June, 5 years ago
==Teito University Campus
==We find Akiyama Shinichi in his younger days.
((Akiyama Shinichi (22)
Teito University, Liberal Arts Department, Senior))
==Teito University is said to be one of the most elite and difficult to get into
==Presently, five students gather at a criminal psychology seminar taught by
Professor Okabe, social psychology specialist in the liberal arts department.
==Three of them, including Akiyama, plan on starting careers in civil service. The
other two plan on working at super top-rate corporations. They are elite.
-- Hey guys... why are you taking Professor Okabe's seminar in the first place.
((Igarashi Natsuki, 21 Plans on entering civil service.))
Well, criminal psychology sounds interesting.
((Komaki Hitoshi, 22. Plans on getting a job at a bank.))
Me too. Anyway we're studying here, so that we don't have to settle for shitty
positions when we go out in the world.
So it might as well be interesting.
((Oono Jirou, 22. Plans on working at a television station))
I'm here 'cause I heard from a classmate that Okabe's seminars are easy and
Actually, compared to other seminars, there's not a lot of reports or
presentations or anything.
((Matsuo Masami, 22 Plans on entering civil service.))
Clearly, Okabe's seminars are generally pleasant.
Oono: Yeah but there's one hard part...
Oono: coping with the peculiar atmosphere.
Matsuo: Of course! That gloomy atmosphere is the main reason why Okabe's seminars
are so unpopular.
But I've heard in another seminar that the professors go
drinking together and debate with each other until morning...
Professor Okabe he...no...they never do that with him.
They always say they're indifferent, or that they're trying to unwind, or that
he's eerie... or...
Igarashi: Seems like everyone who does the criminal psychology curriculum would
be like that. Year after year, they think only of murder and people with abnormal
Anybody would become gloomy.
Hmm... I guess.
((Okabe Yukiya, 62 Teito University Liberal Arts Department. Behavior and culture curriculum.
Professor of Social Psychology. Focus: Criminal Psychology.))
Okabe: Good morning.
Class: G--good morning.
Oono: ...why so silent?
Komaki: ...this is creepy.
Okabe: Until now, you've just heard me lecture about criminal psychology.
I'm giving you an assignment.
And that assignment is...
Though this is assignment only touches upon it, profiling is a psychological and
scientific approach used in criminal investigations to draw a portrait of the
criminals. You'll use that technique in your assignment to dissect a moment in
time and explain it.
I actually want you all to try profiling.
It's this profiling for a real situation in the field? We can't exactly go out
looking at actual evidence left behind.
The person I want you to profile isn't a criminal.
It's the sender of this letter.
Student: What's that?
Okabe: Do any of you know what a letter balloon is?
Akiyama: I made one back when I was in elementary school.
You tie a letter to the string of a balloon and release it.
Okabe: That's right.
This letter was caught in a tree in someone's yard in Setagaya.
unfortunately, the ink with the name and the address got wet and was
smeared, so it's impossible to read.
Igarashi: When it was pulled out of the tree, did it land in the morning dew?
Okabe: Could be.
Now then, I want you to construct a personal profile of the
You have two weeks and you five can talk amongst yourselves. Two weeks
from today, I will read your reports in class.
But if you do poorly, you will have a special assignment to do over your summer
Okabe: So do your best.
Someone: So who said Okabe's seminars were easy and didn't have a lot of
Oono: Now now.
We might end up learning a lot from this.
let's have a look at the letter.
“Nice to meet you
Thank you for picking up this letter.
The snow on the mountains is melting, and it's about time for the cherry blossoms
How is it where you live?
Is spring coming?
It's said that spring is the season for journeys and first meetings.
Entering school … changing classes …. finding jobs…
Spring a hopeful season.
No matter what painful things might be happening
The budding leaves on the trees and flowers are overflowing with life
And that life gives us courage.
This is spring.
Spring sure is wonderful.
So, I would be happy to know if the new season brings you hope and courage.
Please let me know if you have read this letter.”
Oono: Well, we can tell the writer is a man
because he refers to himself as "boku."
Also, the season is spring.
Igrashi: We can't just
write that as the profile.
Oono: Well then, you try it.
Igarashi: You said it's spring but
if we really pressed it,
between March 24 and March 31.
Matsuo: How'd you narrow it down?
Was it the part that said, "It's about time for
the cherry blossoms to open?"
Igarashi: There's that...but even more so the part
"It's said that spring is the season for journeys and first meetings. Entering school … changing classes …. finding jobs…" He's listing all these spring events, so
Why isn't "graduation" there?
Oono: Oh right.
Igarashi: Most likely, when the letter was written, graduation had already
happened. Since graduation ceremonies usually happen around March 10, anything
before the 24th would be unlikely.
Matsuo: I see.
So when he was writing about "entering school" and "finding a job" he was talking
about what comes after.
And so if you're going from that...
It's going to be about March 24 to the 31st.
Igarashi: We can figure something else out too.
The order that "entering school, changing classes, and finding a job" are written implies the order the writer thought of them when making the list.
So this person, when thinking about spring events thought about school events before finding a job.
Oono: So he's a student?
Komaki: What about the opening: "The snow on the mountains is starting to melt."
Even in the middle of winter, you don't see snow piled up anywhere south of
Matsuo: So, it's up north then.
Oono: Would it have to at least be as far north as North Kantou, around
Oono: So my opinion is, judging from all that, the sender of the letter is a male
student from the north who wrote this letter near the end of of march.
Igarashi: That's about it.
-- The professor isn't going to be satisfied with that level of analysis.
Oono: Akiyamaa, you haven't said anything. What do you think of our reasoning?
Akiyama: Well, it's not bad.
Just, could you tell me one basic thing...
Akiyama: Is it right?
Matsuo: Ahh... well...oh yeah...
He said the letter was found in a tree in someone's yard in Setagaya.
The professor clearly lives in Setagaya as well.
the professor found it himself?
That's a definite possibility!
Komaki: Maybe he found it and when he saw the name and address were gone thought,
"This would be perfect for an assignment on profiling."
Igarashi: So not even the professor knows if it's right!
Matsuo: And therefore our reports can't be wrong!
Oono: What's that -- the if you do a bad job, you'll have extra work over
summer break was just a threat to make us work harder on the report.
Igarashi: I feel a lot better now.
Oono: It doesn't matter what we write as long as it sounds good.
Are you making progress on the report?
It's been going well.
Okabe: I see.
Akiyama: Oh yeah
I do have one question.
Will you know if what we write is correct?
Okabe: Of course.
I know who sent the letter.
Akiyama: Thank you.
Oono: He knows the right answer?
Hahahaha he's just bluffing.
He can't just come out and say "There's no one answer."
Akiyama: I guess
Someone: Never mind that Akiyama. We've still got work to do on the report. The
sender seems to be a steady, earnest, and cheerful person...so why is his
handwriting so uneven...
Student: Nao-- let's go!
I just found 100 yen!
If I don't turn it in...
Student: You're so stupidly honest. You can just keep it!
((Arrow pointing to the guy on the bench:)) Akiyama
Akiyama: What if...
Narration: Then...the day of the report.
Okabe: We can tell this letter was written at the end of March, as inferred by the part, "It's said that spring is the season for journeys and first meetings.Entering school … changing classes …. finding jobs…"
He lists a number of spring events, but why is graduation included?
Okabe: Because when he wrote this, graduation had already passed. So, if he were thinking of the events that come after, then he wrote the letter at the end of March.
The sender is undoubtedly a male, as indicated by his use of the word "boku" to refer to himself. In the section that lists the spring events, the writer put "finding jobs" after both "entering school and "changing classes," so we know that he is a student.
The kanji he uses are consistent with those learned in the second or third year of middle school or high school. If he were a college student student, he'd think of finding a job before changing classes.
We know from the lack of spelling and grammar mistakes that he did well in school. Also from his remarks about the snow beginning melt, lives in North Kantou, around Yamanashi Prefecture.
If he lived in Touhoku, it would be too early to talk about cherry blossoms opening.
Also, the characters are lined up and letter is folded uniformly. The meticulous
handwriting indicates that the author is methodical.
He uses a lot of positive words like "hope" and "courage" so he's cheerful and
The method of sending the letter by balloon indicates that he still has some
childlike romanticism in his character.
...The portrait in this report is...
Igarashi: How can you say that it's wrong?
I mean, not even you know the sender of the letter, right?
Okabe: I know.
I most definitely know the sender's profile.
Now someone in here had a different conclusion about the sender from this report.
Okabe: All right, Akiyama. Tell us your answer.
Akiyama: Yes, sir.
The sender was a 19 year old male. Despite his personality, he was going through
some tough times.
He wrote the letter at the beginning of March, and released it from southern
Oono: What the hell? That's completely unlikely.
Okabe: That's correct.
Komaki: Tell us, how'd you guess?
Akiyama: I'll explain.
When I saw the letter, a lot of things fell out of place.
For one, the smearing of the ink.
Igarashi: I thought it got wet from dew when it was pulled from the tree.
Akiyama: Does it really seem that way?
When I was in elementary school, I released a letter by balloon. However, at that
time, we sealed the letter in vinyl before we released it, so the rain wouldn't
And what about the way the letter is folded?
I think this how it was originally released but...
Akiyama: isn't it odd that only the name and address got wet,
and not the contents of the letter itself?
Matsuo: Ahh! Obviously!
Akiyama: I'd say
the letter was smeared after it was read.
And so it's not strange at all that the professor would know the name and address of the sender.
But the way the professor said it was a bit different.
Professor (flashback): I know who sent the letter.
Akiyama: "I know who sent the letter" .... that doesn't have the nuance of just
knowing the name and address.
It implied that the professor had some sort of contact with the sender.
Akiyama: Something else bothered me as well.
This is a letter written to someone he'd never seen before.
If you yourself were writing a letter to someone you'd never met, what would you write?
First, you'd have the initial greeting...then what?
You'd probably introduce yourself, right?
But there's no introduction at all in this letter.
Akiyama: I couldn't help but wonder why the sender of the letter didn't talk about himself.
Did he not want to?
But if he didn't want to talk about himself...there were still all these positive expressions like "hope" and "courage"...
And I wondered if he didn't want to just shake off the dark circumstances around
If that was true...
then I thought there might be a relationship between that and the professor
knowing about the sender of the letter....
Akiyama: So then I found out
the sender's identity.
Komaki: How'd you do that!?
Akiyama: I'm sorry.
What I did next wasn't profiling.
I asked the
Oono: Huh? What-- that's not profiling at all!
Akiyama: Of course not...
but I couldn't have done it without asking.
Professor, I'm sorry for not telling you earlier,
but she told me that
Akiyama: The sender was very sick.
Akiyama: His name was Takeda Koushirou, and he'd been bedridden for 3 years, since the age of 16.
Now because of this, this once cheerful boy started to mope around silently.
Akiyama: Even though he was 19, "entering school" and "changing classes" came to mind before "finding a job" did,
I think because he resented the fact that he couldn't have a normal high-school life due to his illness.
It was his mother, who looked after him, who suggested the letter balloons.
She thought it would help take his mind off things.
Fed up and bored with being sick, he happily took her suggestion.
So his mother prepared 50 balloons for him and he very carefully wrote the 50 letters.
But he wrote nothing about being sick or suffering in in letters. Instead, he wrote a lot of words about hope. He didn't want to waste the last of his strength making people pity him.
Igarashi: So maybe he didn't write about graduation because it implied an ending.
Akiyama: He had been bedridden for so long that he'd never gotten a chance to look outside. So, Koushirou, who had originally moved from Chiba for health reasons, didn't know that there wasn't any snow on the mountains in Bousou.
Oono: So what about that line about the snow on the mountains melting?
Akiyama: It was referring to the landscape he saw when he lived in Niigata.
A memory of a spring landscape from back when he was healthy.
Akiyama: And then, when the south wind was the strongest, a day at the beginning of March, his mother went to the hospital roof and released all 50 balloons.
Not all of them would find their way into someone's hands,
but luckily one of the balloons did reach a girl from Setagaya.
Actually that girl was...
Professor Okabe's 18 year old daughter Reiko.
Akiyama: Reiko was also going through a difficult time. Once she had been basketball player who had been chosen for a national team, but a serious knee injury forced her to stop playing.
After that, she had shut herself in her room. Her high-school graduation was coming up but she still hadn't decided what she would do afterwards. She just stayed in her room everyday.
That letter saved her.
The painful winter will pass, and a hopeful spring will definitely come.
The message of the letter gave her strength and courage.
Reiko, who hadn't left the house for so long, went out and applied to prep school the next day.
She was reborn with every step that she took.
She immediately wrote a reply to the address on the letter
expressing her gratitude to Koushirou for giving her the strength to live.
And not long after, a reply came.
But it wasn't what she expected.
Because the sender wasn't Koushirou, but his mother.
He had died shortly after receiving Reiko's letter.
According to the letter
"Koushirou was happy to know that the letter he had written had given someone courage.
So, thank you, Reiko. Koushirou spent his last moments rereading your letter."
Reiko, when she first found out from that letter that Koushirou had been seriously ill, couldn't get past her shock
but she returned to her room and reread Koushirou's letter,
unable to stop her tears from falling.
The cause of the smearing of the name and address on that letter
were Reiko's own tears.
Akiyama: Professor Okabe
I'm sorry. I ignored the assignment by asking about what happened.
Okabe: I'm not going to scold you.
... on the contrary
Okabe: You did the right thing.
Okabe: I handed you all a letter and told you to all to create a profile of the sender... most of you followed the wording of my assignment to make inferences about the sender
Something like this report.
But Akiyama was different. With the letter in hand, he approached me.
To get you to ask why I gave you this letter or why I gave you this assignment,
That was my true intention.
<Page 33: >
Okabe: You're all exceptional.
When you go out in the world, you'll become the elite who stand head and shoulders over everyone else.
But that's the problem with elite minds,
after a while, many of them become negligent in looking into people's minds.
Psychology is the science of searching the minds of people.
At the very least, I don't want you all, who have signed up for this psychology class,
to become negligent in looking into the minds of others.
Okabe: And no matter how good a profile,
the best way of understanding someone is to come into contact with them.
This is my last lecture.
After summer break is over, you'll be concentrating on your plans for after graduation.
So then, about these reports...
You all pass.
We did it!!
Just as I thought!
Akiyama: Professor Okabe
Akiyama: Can I still go through the procedure for entering graduate school?
Okabe: You can, but I thought you already had something lined up.
Akiyama: I changed my mind.
I want to study more under Professor Okabe and learn more about the minds of people.
Okabe: ...Is that so
==On that day Akiyama chose to enter graduate school.
==And that's the story of Akiyama five years before his first meeting with Kanzaki Nao.