“…Do you really think you can keep hiding at a place like this?”
As if she’s seen through all of that, she assumed a scolding posture and pointed out the biggest issue here.
It was indeed a bit late to point it out, but after finding out the actual situation of this place that they’ve wound up in, she wanted to ask him that question one last time.
It made perfect sense that Shinichi was trying to hide so many things. After all, the revelation of such things would cause the whole world to become even more chaotic, but hiding his secrets in a place like this was simply too difficult.
That is of course unless he chose not to involve himself with anyone regardless what happens, but Youko knew full well that such a thing was impossible. Hell and heaven could switch places but nothing could stop Shinichi Nakamura from sticking his nose into other people’s business.
“I can’t help but worry since you barely hid anything at all over at Falandia.”
“Well, yeah. Over there it was a lot easier to let the truth out and then suppress those in the know.”
There were very few people who picked a fight with the strong. If people feared him, then less people would approach him.
As long as he didn’t play along with the people who tried to use their strength and approached him, the story would end there.
Either way, trouble was going to find him whether he did or anything or not. There was no need for him to invite them himself since his nature made it impossible to ignore them.
Or at least that’s how he saw it.
“So, what are you going to do now?”
“Umm, yeah, about that… Actually, I was thinking of making a deal.”
Shinichi blurted out something like that as if it was an everyday thing.
“… With ‘who’ and with ‘what’?”
“Someone familiar with Garesto Academy with some degree of authority, and who can help with my secret—”
For a moment, Youko’s eyes started swimming, unsure about what Shinichi was about to say, but she very quickly understood what he was getting at.
“…So you’re going to sell some of your secret and in exchange get help hiding it?”
“Yeah, something like that. Something like that. There’s someone convenient around, so might as well.”
Shinichi fearlessly smiled and flicked one of the projected screens. On it appeared the information of a certain person.
When Youko saw her picture, it all made sense.
“I see. If the tales I’ve heard from you are true, then she is indeed most appropriate. And more than likely, it’ll be physical help you’ll be giving her rather than information.”
“Right… So, when did you think about all of this?”
Shinichi was happily nodding his head upon receiving his servant’s support, but when she asked that, he suddenly froze.
The blooming smile on her face said that she’d already seen through everything. ‘You thought it up just now, didn’t you?’
This was not a plan one could come up with unless one understood the person one was making a deal with. It was something that one could think up only after coming here and meeting said person.
“When did you come up with this plan, Master?”
Despite him going quiet and his eyes swimming being as good as a tacit confession, Youko did not stop pestering him.
Her questioning was also meant to scold him. One reason for that was because he was being too whimsical, and the other was because he actually thought he wouldn’t be seen through with such a rashly thought plan.
Speechless, Shinichi quietly stood up with his foster.
“You know~ I think I could use a little refreshment. I’m just gonna go to the vending machine outside real quick and buy myself a drink.”
You could show this same scene to any number of people, and they would all point out that this boy was just trying to run away.
“I knew it! You really did just think this up a few days ago, didn’t you!? I can sympathize with your feelings, but you do realize you’re being too rash, right!? And by the way, there are drinks in the fridge!”
“No, you see, I’m really itching for some coffee right now.”
“Lies! Didn’t you say how much you hated that black tea!?”
“Uu, aa, AA—!! I-I can’t hear you! I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!”
Shinichi intentionally raised his voice and left the room while covering his ears, leaving Youko greatly troubled.
She didn’t actually think it was a bad plan. After all, the people in this school did know to some extent that he was hiding some secrets, and most of them did want to know what those were.
So long as he doesn’t make a mistake in picking out what information to divulge and who to divulge it to, this plan was currently their ‘second best’.
“Ah, darn it! I know it can’t be helped since we just got here, but why does he keep acting like that!?”
From the start, neither her nor Shinichi had intended on hiding everything.
But what was sad was that after just a few days of transferring here, their situation was so grave that they now had to come up with a plan.
It was unexpected that from that moment on they wouldn’t be able to hide on their own anymore.
“Like this it’s almost as if I’m accompanying a kid who’s not thinking at… Huh?”
—Wait a moment, isn’t this a good thing?
Considering the secrets they had to keep, it was a problem, but she had always wanted Shinichi to act like his age.
For a while, Youko groaned and worried by herself in Shinichi’s room, unsure what to do.
Meanwhile, Shinichi, who had ran away, wasn’t actually being as rash as she’d thought.
It’s true that he just thought up the plan yesterday, but he had always intended on finding himself allies – although of the several plans, it was just the plan ‘to grab someone’s weakness’ – But regardless, what was really unexpected was that he would be ‘making allies’ as soon as he transferred.
“Just what is wrong with me…”
As helpless as he was, he knew he wasn’t thinking enough.
What’s more is that because he ran away from his room, trouble found him once more.
Almost as if it had been waiting for him all this time, a familiar presence was now following him from behind.
With a quiet sigh that no one could hear, Shinichi held his foster over the vending machine.
The components aside, the vending machines here looked just like the ones Shinichi remembered.
The only part that’s changed is that instead of a coin slot it had a sensor for the fosters.
The students of the school paid for everything at Kutoria through their foster.
As for the bills themselves, they could be paid for with electronic money or the bill could be sent to one’s guardians. There were various ways to pay them.
Either way Shinichi pretended to look lost while looking at the foster in his hand.
This was the floor of his room. Because of that there were several hidden cameras placed all over it. Currently, he was looking at the video feed taken by the vending machine.
“You can’t be serious.”
He could feel the aura and the gaze boring into him, so he knew that there was someone watching him from the shadow of the corner.
It was impressive how they were able to catch his position and expression, considering the location of the camera.
There was a petitioning face on the male student as he peeked out from the corner with just his head. That was an expression with a mix of expectation and anxiety, impatience and guilt.
“Oh, yeah. Of course he’d be here. It’s the male dormitory.”
Why didn’t he realize it? Maybe he just didn’t want to realize it.
Shinichi’s mutters were too quiet for the peeping student to catch.
‘I’m so stupid, seriously,’ Shinichi cursed himself as he purchased the 100% apple juice from the vending machine.
—Can’t you at least do a better job hiding?
The way Shinichi looked when he was troubled was exactly the same as before.
Shinichi could only wryly smile as he made a face like that.
After all, the one who was watching him from the shadows was none other than one of the siblings he reunited with at this school.
Until now, Shinichi had forgotten that this younger brother of his was at the male dormitory too.