It’s a pleasure to meet you. My name is Saime Washichi. You reading this means that I was finally able to publish a book, and likewise, that you decided to read it. For that, I’m extremely grateful.

So, what did you think of Puppetmaster? I’m sure no two people who read it will come away with the exact same impression. There may be only one story, but the interpretation is one per reader. Each of the characters has their own complex past, and layered with their thoughts, personalities, and actions, they built their own lives. Through their interlacing and intertwining, their separation and their reuniting, a story is woven. Should you look at it objectively, or perhaps subjectively, through one set of eyes alone? Every act, even on the reader’s part, changes its shape. As to not influence anyone’s impression. I’ll refrain from touching on the story’s contents here.

In the past, I was quite engrossed in web novels. My addiction started in middle school, perhaps high school, and from there I began to devour light novels and even regular novels, voraciously consuming story after story. I began to want to write a novel of my own, and after a series of fortunate events, I managed to win an award from GAGAGA Bunko and publish this book.

Should even one thing have been different, things might not have ended this way. Just thinking about it puts me in a contemplative mood. If nothing else, I wouldn’t have expected this even five short years ago. It was hard, of course, and there was a fair number of setbacks along the way, but through the support of various important people in my life, I was able to overcome them all. Without them, I doubt I would have achieved this, and for that I am deeply grateful.

I would like to thank everyone who had a hand in the 7th Shogakukan Light Novel Award for giving me this wonderful opportunity. I would also like to thank my editor Ebashi-san for teaching me left from right, Manyako-sama for all of the wonderful illustrations, as well as my family, friends, kouhai, and colleagues for all their love and support. Finally, I would like to thank you, dear reader. From the bottom of my heart, thank you very much.

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