Tsukumodo Antique Shop — We Handle "Mysteriosities"
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Chapter 2

Have you ever wished that you existed twice?

I'm not talking about twins or anything like that. I’m talking about a second "you" who can stand in for you.

Come to think of it, there was a copy-robot in a famous anime show1 that I used to watch when I was a child.

In order to act as a mysterious superhero, the protagonist made the robot go to elementary school in his place. The robot had some amazing abilities: it had free will, would act independently, and could then share its memories with the protagonist.

If you had access to something like that, you could make it do your homework when you felt tired, go to school when you weren’t in the mood, or earn money for you to fritter away on whatever you wanted.

Aah, that would be so convenient.

It does sound like you’d be acting like a pretty nasty slave-driver, but that’s not really the case. After all, the two of you share everything - fun and not-so-fun - at the end of the day.

Mh? Then take on the not-so-fun stuff yourself, you say?

...Now that's a whole other kettle of fish.

Well, there’s no point in daydreaming. Possessing something like that would be too good to be true, and even if it were possible, there’d bound to be some kind of catch.

"I'm back."

"Ya," I said as I paused the game I was playing and turned to the person who had just entered the room.

It was a high school student. He had just come back from school, so he was still wearing his uniform and carrying the official school satchel. His short haircut, sun-tanned skin, and strong build suggested that he played a lot of sports.

If there were a third person in the room, he would have been flabbergasted.

The face of that student looked identical to mine. Not similar, but the exact same.

And our faces weren’t the only things that were identical—our body sizes, haircuts, shoulder widths, weights, skin tones, leg lengths, shoe sizes—everything was the same.

We weren't identical twins. Even so-called “identical” twins look similar at best, and aren’t actually identical.

Our appearances, however, were exactly the same in every respect.

He was like my mirror image, which is why I called him "copy."

"Give me the satchel."

After taking the satchel from my copy, I rummaged in it for a manga that had just come out today. I had commanded him to buy it for me on his way home. When I took the manga out, I accidentally snagged a sheet of paper, which then fell to the ground.

"What's that?"

"The results from the quiz I told you about yesterday."

"Did you mention it to me?"

I took a look at it. Next to my name, Jirou Kishitani, was a 100. It was a perfect score.

"Not bad at all."

"The test covered the stuff we studied yesterday. It paid off, didn't it?"

"You're the one who studied, though."

But I get all the credit. Heh, looks like I can look forward to my report card this year.

I tossed the sheet away and threw myself onto my bed with the new manga. My copy picked up the sheet and sat down where I had been sitting.

"Oh? You made a lot of progress, didn't you?" he suddenly said as he looked at the TV screen.

I’d been gaming all day while my copy was at school. Of course I made some decent progress.

Cause both my parents work from the early morning ‘till late at night, there's no one who would bitch at me for skipping school. No, I was at school, I guess? Or rather, my copy was. But practically speaking, it's the same thing.

"Train my characters while I'm reading this manga!"