The No-Killing Principle

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The one who broke the awkward silence was Saki as she continued to play with the green pea on her plate with her fork.

“You are a nice guy you know.
Paying back your parent’s debt….taking down your enemies by targeting the engine when you don’t have to.
All that.”

“You didn’t target the enemy pilots earlier too, right, Makishima-san.”

Saki bitterly smiles at Kisei’s words.
It appears that even during the earlier fierce battle, Kisei was paying attention to Saki too.

“I only do that when I think I can.
I mean, it isn’t like I prefer killing people after all.
At least, I wouldn’t actively aim at the cockpit.”

Said Saki as she stabbed the green pea she had been playing with and brought it to her mouth.

“Still, I am not as steadfast as you, okay.
If I have no other choice, I wouldn’t hesitate to target the cockpit.
You are different right? No matter what, you would do anything to leave the pilots unharmed.
That’s some guts you have there you know.”

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“Eh, does that mean……even in the earlier battle, Kisei-san was only targeting the engine too?”

“Well, that’s the case but…….”

With a fed-up expression, Kisei turned his eyes away.
Not only in this job, but his former employers had also complained about this as well.
Although Vuld is an aggressive race, they still hold senseless killing in contempt like Terran.
However, it is still a fact that you would be endangering your comrades if you always worry about your enemy’s well-being.
That’s why many don’t like this particular practice of Kisei.

“Kisei-san, uhh…of course, I do think avoiding senseless loss of lives is a virtue but, I don’t think that it would be worth endangering yourself.”

Schleer looks worriedly at Kisei.

“Well, I really can’t do anything about this.”

After saying that in a tone that makes his answer sounds like an excuse, Kisei continues eating his already chilled steak.

“Indeed, I don’t aim for pilots because I hate seeing people die but…….there’s a reason why I hate it so much.”

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“A reason?”

Schleer asked nervously.

“I think I’ve told Makishima-san about this before…..I actually read my opponent’s thoughts through the I-con system.
That’s how I can react to their actions during battles.”

The I-con system is a type of Brain-Machine interface system that comes as standard equipment for every striker.
Its functions are to read the pilot’s brainwaves and interpret them as commands to the striker.

“Only Lt.
Makishima again…….”

Schleer broody muttered to herself but there’s no point going at Saki now so she decided to endure it.

“You did tell me about that huh.”

Saki replied without caring about Schleer.
It was hard to believe for her at first but after they survived an actual battle together, she can no longer deny it.

“So, if a person dies within the detection range of the I-con system…….”

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Understanding what Kisei’s trying to say, Schleer involuntarily raised her voice.
She already knows how ridiculously skilled he is so if the reason behind his power is the ability to read people’s thoughts then it makes a lot of sense.

“Well, it doesn’t just feel bad, you know.
It’s like a side effect of using the I-con too well.
Unless you are the type of person that doesn’t care about other human beings, it just doesn’t feel right.”

“……now I don’t feel like doing it anymore, Oi.”

Saki said with an extremely unpleasant expression.
She took Kisei’s advice the other day and tried to focus her mind during the battle to see if she could detect any enemy thoughts.
There’s no positive result so far but if that side effect is the price for such an ability then she doesn’t want to try so hard anymore.
After all, being overly sensitive to others’ death would be more like a debuff instead.

“No matter how strong you are, to enter the battlefield like that is………”

“I don’t even want to imagine it…….”

Schleer and Saki look at each other.
Only now, the two’s thoughts aligned.

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“Even so, there’s no suitable job for me aside from piloting a striker……also, it’s not all bad you know.”

Kisei waved his hand at them as a gesture to ease their worry.
It wouldn’t do if they start feeling pity for him and keep him from piloting a striker after all.

“The universe seen through the I-con system is very beautiful, you know.
The wills and emotions of people are so bright and colorful…… was like I was looking at the stars.”

“It sounds more like you are on drugs instead so can you not put it like that? I will get more worried instead.”

“No way.”

Kisei protested.
Seeing him like that, Schleer sighs.
Personally, she wanted to keep Kisei away from the battlefield due to this side-effect of his ability but that is a luxury she can not afford due to the current situation of her country.
After all, without Kisei’s ability to turn the table on the Nored empire, her country will end up destroyed.

“L, let’s stop talking about this.
It would be a waste of a good meal after all.”

In the end, Schleer could only change the topic.

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