“Well, at the very least, they’re having fun.””Hmm?”
Glancing at the display opened at the side, a
It was a picture of a place with a big gate as red as the huge paper lanterns that hung.
A boy Shinichi knew all too well was posing with his friends in front.
『───Hello Kaminarimon Gate! The Kibi Dango tasted great! Ah, the words, Wind and Thunder God Gate, were written behind too. Apparently, there’s a wind god too. Did you know that, Onii-chan?』
A message was attached to the mail that conveyed the excitement of the people there. When Shinichi saw that, he smiled.
Next to that was a group photo of several girls in front of a different location.
『As expected of the Tokyo Grand Shrine, places with faith are just brimming with life, aren’t they? But why does everyone keep trying to get me to buy a marriage tie?』
In front of a building that looked like the main shrine was Tomoe and a girl with black hair. The sight of them smiling was enough to deepen the smile on Shinichi, but at the same time, he couldn’t help but think of how dense Tomoe was.
Seeing Ryou behind her look so unhappy made him wryly smile.
Looks like no one included him in their group, so Tomoe had to pick him up out of compassion.
『This here is the Nipponbashi. When I think of how many travelers have passed through here, I can’t help but be deeply moved. 』
That message came attached with a picture of the Nipponbashi and the Kirin statues.
Unlike the others, Aristel’s sightseeing focused more on the historical aspect.
It really was just like her, Shinichi thought.
『How’s that, Icchi? Looks delicious, doesn’t it!? 』
Meanwhile, a certain fox-eared woman sent him a picture of herself holding out a Tsukushima Monja at him.
He immediately replied with, “Food grudges are scary, you know!” And she immediately replied with a, “I’ll buy you some, so forgive me!”
Apparently, the speed of his reply and the brevity of it conveyed that he was seriously unhappy.
『Behold, this lineup! As expected of the real Tokyo. It has everything! The internet is great, but seeing and examining the real thing is what makes a true otaku!!』
Said a certain German as he sent him a picture of some anime store’s shelves.
Apparently, he had no intention of properly touring Tokyo, truly a man devoted to his hobbies.
It was such that Shinichi couldn’t help but wonder if he truly was a German spy.
Apparently, word of Shinichi being confined had gotten out, and the other three classes during the exam, mostly 1 – D, sent him similar pictures and mails.
They looked like they were having the time of their life as they enjoyed the trip, sights, and their friends.
One might think that they’re simply trying to get back at him for his harsh training, but such suspicions could only be unjust.
In the first place, none of them could possibly have the guts to try and get back at him after that hellish training.
They were more likely just trying to help him experience sightseeing Tokyo in their own way.
Though Shinichi’s hands never stopped, such adorable consideration did deepen his smile.
“…I-I understand how you feel, but don’t you have any intention of having fun yourself?”
For a moment, Frire lost herself in that smile of his, but she shook her head and immediately recovered.
As a teacher, she could understand how he felt, but she felt that it was different somehow.
After all, he too should’ve been among those students. Especially since…
“There won’t be anything to enjoy if we don’t finish this.”
That was indeed the current situation, so Frire could only shrug her shoulders, crestfallen.
She wanted him to have fun, but she was also the reason why he couldn’t.
Helpless, she felt like running away.
“It’s true that I’m being forced to do this ridiculous job, but it does make me feel much better knowing that it’ll make these guys happy.”
But he didn’t mind that one bit, and just smiled at her with a gentle face that Frire lost herself in.
“You said it… Let’s hurry up and get this over with then.”
They wanted the students to enjoy and learn without knowing that someone else was struggling.
They wanted them to have a normal experience touring Japan and studying Japanese culture.
That was how the two felt as they worked hard, but of course, unlike Shinichi who naturally ignored himself, Frire didn’t forget to include him.
However, that attitude caused their two servants to make a sullen face.
〈It’s because you think like that that you keep getting the short end of the stick. 〉
Unfortunately, they only got surprise and strained laughs in response.
“The short end of the stick, huh… I-Is that how it is?” Frire said.
“Ahahaha… Speaking of which, everyone’s dressed casually, huh. I know there are schools like that, but I thought for sure Garesto Academy would have the students tour in their uniform.”
Shinichi knew that the conversation would eventually turn to him if he were to allow the topic to continue, so he blatantly changed the topic while looking at the photos of the students that were all dressed differently.
Not one student was dressed in Garesto’s white uniform.
That was actually because the school issued a ban on uniforms during the trip to encourage the students to wear plain clothes.
But of course, Shinichi’s information was limited to the things he learned last night.
“Y-Yeah, actually, that was the case before, but some people thought that the trips were a problem, and a trip this time around would be much more dangerous for the students, so…”
“I see, so that’s why they’re not wearing uniforms this time.”
Frire was still troubled, but she played along with Shinichi’s topic change nonetheless.
It was easy to tell at a glance if a person was Garestonian or an Earthling, and the uniform was like an announcement of one’s affiliation.
Normally, that would act as a deterrent, but in the current situation, it was more likely to act as a light trap instead – the sort that would attract poisonous moths.
Odds were that touring in plain clothes would lead to people thinking that they were just like any other youths on a trip, and that would be much less dangerous than advertising that they were from Garesto Academy.
“And yet you’re in your school uniform as usual.”
“I don’t want to be told that by someone who was in her tracksuit until just a moment ago. And it’s not like you gave me time to change.”
“…I am so sorry.”
Shinichi was brought here with his luggage as soon as they arrived at the hotel.
At most, he took off his jacket, but his attire remained mostly unchanged.
Of course, unlike in Kutoria, his school uniform wasn’t so conspicuous in Japan, so he intended to switch between them and his casual clothes depending on the situation.
Though that was actually also partly because he couldn’t find many decent clothes in that dump site he called a room.
“…Oh, someone came?”
“Hmm, seems like it.”
When they felt someone stop in front of the door, a knock resounded.
But for some reason, neither of them responded, and Shinichi just looked at Frire with a quizzical look on his face.
“…Hey, go get it. Isn’t this your room?”
“No, it’s your room.”
“If I were at my room, someone might come with more work or to socialize!”
It wasn’t as though she was the only teacher in the hotel.
After all, she did have a lot of work, so someone else was stationed with her to provide reception when necessary.
To avoid having more work piled on her by that person or needless socializing, she ran to Shinichi’s room.
“That will just buy you a little time at most, though.”
Shinichi stood up in dismay and approached the door.
Frire fleeing to his room would at most buy her about a dozen minutes.
The teachers knew that Frire had so much work that she couldn’t leave the hotel.
So naturally, if she wasn’t in her room, then she could only be in another student’s room.
In other words, Shinichi’s room.
“Nakamura-kun, are you in?”
The voice of the woman outside seemed to ask just that as she reached out to Shinichi.
“Yes, I’m opening the door now.”
Sure enough, on the other side of the door was the female teacher in charge of the Japanese language.
She sat next to
“Do you have business with me, Teacher Satou?”
“By any chance, did Teacher Doneju, a woman of course, happen to drop by here?”
“Umm… She did, but…”
‘I knew it,’ Shinichi thought. He tried to buy Frire some time by pretending to be at a loss and making eye contact with Teacher Satou, but…
“Oh, if it isn’t Teacher Satou, do you need something from me?”
The person herself came out without so much as a thought.
That was mostly because Frire respected the teacher that sat next to her, but it was also because of that that she failed to see Shinichi frowning and glaring at her with half-opened eyes, and that she completely forgot about what kind of outfit she was currently dressed in.
“Actually, I was about to ask you if you would like to have lunch together and take a short breather, but… Teacher?”
Frire titled her head as though to say, ‘is something the matter?’
But Teacher Satou’s eyes were clearly examining her from head to toe, and then those same eyes turned to Shinichi.
Although he had only taken off his outer garment, he had also unbuttoned the first two buttons on his shirt because of the heat.
Moreover, he hadn’t handled his shirt gently, so there were some wrinkles on it.
He had also taken it out of his slacks to make himself comfy.
Although the rest of their clothes weren’t messy, this was clearly a situation that looked just like ‘that’.
Shinichi was about to come up with an excuse to get them out of this situation, but then a smile surfaced on Teacher Satou’s face.
“…By any chance, am I intruding?”