EIDBT – May 29, 2011 – Acceptance
You know, the more I’m exposed to people’s inner turmoils, the more I just can’t help but think that the world is a terrible place sometimes. We saved Kanji today, and it was pretty much what we were expecting, though even in this case, the Shadow didn’t quite have it right.
To start things on a strange note, I had a dream last night that Yukiko and I were wrestling with luchador masks on. Jeez, why do I keep having these dreams? Nevertheless, I felt a bit closer to her in the end.
Today was of course Sunday, which meant, of course, that it was time to tune into the Tanaka shopping show! I decided to buy the steel panier combo… Though really, what am I going to do with all these slimming meals I’m getting?
Like I mentioned earlier, it was time to explore the TV World. I stocked up on a few items, but I was a little iffy that we didn’t seem to have anything to help us recover our Personas’ energies. I shrugged and hoped that we would be fine, so we jumped into the TV and kicked open the final door of the steamy bathhouse. Inside, we found a familiar scene.
“Oh, come now, enough with the charade. Isn’t it awful to deceive people? To deceive yourself? What’s so bad about doing what I want to do?” Shadow Kanji was provoking his host, as usual.
“That has nothin’ to do with it…”
“I’m what you really want, aren’t I?”
“Ohh, how I hate girls… So arrogant and self-centered! They cry if you get angry, they gossip behind your back, they spread nasty lies… They look at me like some… some disgusting THING and say that I’M a weirdo… Laughing at me, all the while! ‘You like to sew? What a queer!’ ‘Painting is so not you.’ … What does it mean to ‘be a guy?’ What does it mean to be ‘manly?’ Girls are so scary…”
“I-I ain’t scared of ’em!”
“Men are much better… They’d say those awful, degrading things. Yes, I vastly prefer men…”
“Hell with that! What makes you think you can say that shit with my face…!?”
“Why, you’re me… And I’m you… You do know that, don’t you…?”
“No… Nuh-uh! No way! There’s no way in hell that you’re me!”
“*chuckle* Teeheehee… You’re me, and there’s no denying it!”
Surprise surprise, Kanji’s Shadow transformed, and was flanked my two burly men. This fight would be a little more complicated than before.
Normally, I’d have a comic here, but I don’t know if I have the time today to make one. I’ll try and make one soon, and I’ll let you know when I do.
During the fight, Kanji’s Shadow kept accusing us of not accepting him. I really don’t think that the issue here is that Kanji is gay. Nothing close to that, I think. The fight was a tough one, but we were able to pull through. Chie delivered the final hit, which I was pretty proud of. As usual, the Shadow transformed back into Kanji’s image once we had defeated it. Kanji was able to recover from the transformation, and faced his Shadow again.
“Kanji-kun!” Yukiko called out; we all knew how dangerous it is to provoke Shadows further.
“Wait, Yukiko! Something’s wrong.” Yosuke noticed it before us; Kanji’s Shadow began to recover.
“I-It’s still coming at us! Kanji is still rejecting it…” Teddie informed us.
“Well, I can’t blame him with this many witnesses…” I think that Yosuke was still obsessing over the whole homosexual thing.
“Such a passionate approach…” Kanji’s Shadow started up again.
“What?” Yosuke was confused.
“I think that you three… Would make wonderful boyfriends.” Us three? Yosuke, me, and… Teddie? Kanji? I really don’t know.
“S-Stop it! Y-You got it all wrong!” Yosuke’s homophobia was getting to be really annoying right about now.
“Enough… Stop… What the hell are you blabbering about…?” Kanji was still resisting, it seemed.
“I don’t care who… Won’t someone, anyone, please accept me…?” Shadow Kanji was still pleading. That’s the issue here… Kanji’s strongest manifestation of emotion… was begging to be accepted.
“Stop… it…” Kanji called out.
“Accept me for who I am!”
“Wh-whoa! I really don’t swing that way!” Shut the fuck up, Yosuke.
“I said stop it!” Kanji ran up to his Shadow, and clocked the thing right in the face, knowing it down. I suppose that’s one way to confront your inner turmoil…
“Tch. Can’t believe something like this is inside me…” Kanji spit.
“Kanji, you’re…” Yosuke was still incredibly confused.
“Yeah, I know… I’ve known all this time I had something like you! It ain’t a matter of guys or chicks… I’m just scared shitless of being rejected. I’m a total pansy who tries to make everyone hate me.” I told him that he wasn’t alone. I think everyone deals with these issues at times.
“…… C’mon… get up. Anyone who looks like me, I know they ain’t so weak that they can’t take a punch.” Kanji spoke a bit softer to his Shadow than I’ve seen him do before. “I already know that you’re me… You’re me… and I’m you, damnit!”
Kanji had faced his inner self. In the moment his new Persona manifested itself, I was able to recognize it as Take-Mikazuchi. As usual, Kanji collapsed, and we had to drag him out of the TV World. In the Junes electronics department, Kanji started to recover. We promised to explain everything soon, and Yosuke offered to take Kanji home. I went home happy, but with a tinge of unease and anger.
I was able to get home right in time for dinner. As we were eating, Dojima mentioned that Kanji had been reported missing, but then found again. I told him, of course, that I didn’t even realize Kanji had been missing in the first place. Dojima didn’t seem to like that, and pressed further, by asking why I’d been around the textile shop recently. I just told him that Yukiko had brought me along to shop with her for the inn. Not… entirely a lie, I suppose. Dojima seems to be on to me, which is unfortunate. Hopefully though the blundering idiots I deal with can err on the side of subtlety from now on… What am I talking about, I’m going to have to deal with this every single time we do something as a group.
And so there’s the day. You know, looking back, I can’t help but get a little peeved at all this. Think about it; beyond Chie (and the first victim, the reporter), every one of the people that have faced their shadow have been dealing with issues largely pushed on them by the world around them. Think about it.
Saki had to deal with wanting to be self-sustaining and a bit independent, but being chastised for working the only place she could.
Yosuke was dragged from his home to the countryside, and instantly hated for something he had no responsibility for or control over.
Yukiko was being forced to live her life a certain way, with her future mapped out for her from birth, and just wanted to be her own person.
And finally, Kanji was being rejected by the world around him as a freak or a weirdo, and a result, his Shadow had to take on the form of a grossly misguided attempt to just fulfill a need to be accepted.
Yes, these people are facing their inner selves, but I don’t know if it’s more that, or that they’re finally throwing off the chains that the world around them have created over the years. Man, people can be such fucking destructive forces, sometimes. This almost seems to be a battle on two fronts; against the murderer, and against society in general. I don’t know which ones we’ll be able to win.