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OverviewEdit

「For Luck」 —How Much Do I Pay For?— (「祝福のつもり」 ("Shukufuku no Tsumori") —How Much Do I Pay For?—) is the eighth and final chapter of the sixth volume of Kino's Journey —the Beautiful World—. It features Riku, the narrator, and his Master Shizu, and depicts the two's journey before they head for the Land of the Coliseum.

Synopsis Edit

The chapter begins with Riku explaining who he is - that he is a dog, with white busy fur, and despite always looking happy and smiling, that is not always the case.

The two are traveling in Shizu's buggy through a snowy plain, in search for a country to repair the vehicle, as it appeared that the engine was in need of maintenance.

They eventually arrive at a country which was both rich and technologically advanced, but heavily segregate the rich and the poor, forcing the latter to live in a slum in the northern part of the country. Despite being warned that the area is unsafe, Shizu and Riku decide to look there for lodging anyway.

During their stay, they meet a little girl named Rafa, who originally is going door to door collecting scrap metal to sell, but eventually insists on being bought by Shizu in hopes of leaving the country. She is turned down by the traveling duo for the following two days until finally, on the last day, Shizu asks Rafa if she has a family.

Rafa reveals that she is the oldest of her seven siblings. Her father is unemployed, while her mother is busy with household chores. As the eldest child, she is the only working person in her family. She hopes that, with her departure, her family and siblings would become motivated to find work to support the family, as she has. She states that she would prefer to live the way she wants - by herself. By purchasing her, he would free her from her family obligations. Shizu finally agrees, asking Rafa how much she should be paid for her purchase, though Riku is unsure if the amount is too much or too little.

With a promise of meeting the next day at the city gates, Rafa returns home to pack her belongings, while the two travelers ponder about what to do with the girl. Riku is originally pleased with the increase of companions, the joy is quickly cut short when Shizu announces that they will leave her in the next country they visit, to the dismay of Riku. It appears that Shizu has forgotten where their next destination will be, until Riku mildly reminds his master.

On the fourth and final day in the country, the two travelers picked up their buggy from the repair shop and headed to meet with Rafa. She, in stark contrast with her tearful family, was overjoyed to see them. Riku notices that despite wearing more layers of clothing than she had the past few days, she had no luggage with her. The three travel to the town hall to complete her purchase, where she requests for her family to be in formed that she had been sold. With that, they take the receipt and leave the country.

With the gates behind them, Rafa asks for the buggy to stop in a snow field, and states that she is going to disembark, because she will soon die. It is revealed that she had one to the hospital in the morning to sell her organs, and had them replaced with machinery that will last for only half the day. The money that was paid for her - much more than market price had been - was sent to her family in hope for their survival. She hoped that her siblings would be able to obtain an education, and thus be able to acquire proper jobs. Her purchase meant that she was also able to travel outside the country.

Rafa asks if Shizu will also die soon, as she had overheard Riku and his master discussing their next course of action in their hotel room. She realizes that it was possible to do something at the cost of her own life, and thanks Shizu for giving her this first and last opportunity to create her own destiny. She wishes for Shizu to travel for a long time, despite believing that he will perish in the next country to fulfill his own destiny. Despite this, she prays for his success and kisses him on the forehead for luck.

Rafa's last words are 'I'll wait", before she passes away with a smile. Shizu comments on how kind the smile is, and hopes that when he dies, he also is able to with the same smile on his face. He proceeds to bury her in the field, and announces that he had been overtaken by her determination, saying that if Rafa was able to do it, there was no reason that he would not. If he were to fail, he believed that Rafa would be laughing at him.

With that, and one last reaffirmation from Riku that they were indeed going, and that he would stay with his master until the end, the two continue their journey to the Land of the Coliseum.

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