“Hey, Kobayashi. I didn’t expect to meet you in a place like this.”
“Didn’t you just head to the restroom? That was pretty quick.”
“Ii, let’s have a showdown! Us three against you three!”
Once I swapped with Taotie and came to the third floor, sure enough, Aogasaki, Elmira, and Kurogame were there.
According to them, it seems that they arrived here about an hour earlier and already did a game of bowling. While they were in the middle of discussing whether they should continue, they spotted Ryuuga.
“Everyone, let me introduce this guy again. This is Tenryouin Agito, the one who transferred into my class. Of course, you should know him already, Elle.”
As Ryuuga spoke, Agito glanced at the heroines with a sour expression.
Yeah, it’s obvious that he’s displeased. That’s the face of someone witnessing three nuisances enter the scene.
I know that they’re a troublesome bunch, but they are the proud heroines. Don’t be so unfriendly.
“Oh, you’re the rumored transfer student? I am──”
Aogasaki was in the middle of her usual serious greeting until…
Agito cut her off.
“No need to introduce yourselves. Aogasaki Rei, Elmira McCartney, Kurogame Rina…like it or not, there have been rumors about you all. That includes Yukimiya Shiori as well.”
The heroines were perplexed for a moment, but exchanged glances and made bitter smiles. They’re probably aware of their status as school celebrities.
Thereupon, Ryuga decided to take control of the conversation and struck her palm with her fist. Taking advantage of the heroines appearing, she smiled and made a proposal to everyone.
“Alright, how about we go with what Rina suggested, a three-on-three game? Is that alright, Tenryouin? You and Ichirou will be my partners.”
Agito grudgingly nodded his head. It seems that he gave up on being able to play a game with Ryuuga alone. I was there the whole time though.
…So with that, a new game began.
“Kurogame, stand your ground! This may be a game, but I will not accept defeat!”
“Wow. You’re like a demon sergeant, Elle.”
Despite scratching her cheek in uncertainty, Kurogame got a strike. It was like a fireball pulverized the pins.
Thereafter, Agito, Aogasaki, Ryuuga, and Elmira naturally scored straights as well. It was definitely high-level bowling.
(This is going well. If I do it right, I should be able to play this for laughs. After five ‘buzz cuts,’ a long-awaited ‘hair trim’ would make for a good scene.)
Since this was a six-person game, there was a fee for me as well. In the end, I had to rely on Ryuuga to cover me.
In return for the protagonist’s kindness, I must enliven this place!
“Alright, it’s my turn next. Now then, watch this. I’ll land a splendid strike.”
With a daring expression, I calmly reached towards a ball. The build-up was perfect.
…However, another unfortunate event occurred.
(Boss! There’s more trouble!)
Taotie communicated with me while he was in the arcade. What an untimely “Evil Spirit.”
(What?! I was just getting to the good part! Can’t it wait for a bit?!)
(Mion and Kiki came to the arcade! It seems they’re here to stay!)
Why is it today that everyone I know has to gather here?! Why this building?!
(They know that Tao’s in control of Yukimiya’s body right now, and they’re pretty shaken! They just took a picture at the photo booth, but their faces seem pretty stiff!)
(Ugh…I’ll head over there at once! Switch places again!)
Sadly giving up on my “hair trim,” I scored a strike. I have no time to play the fool. I need to head to the second floor immediately.
“Oh. Not bad, Kobayashi. You landed a splendid strike, just like you said.”
“Wouldn’t this normally be the moment where you jinx yourself? I mean, the circumstances pointed towards it.”
“That’s right, Ii! You need to go with the flow!”
The three heroines’ comments pained my ears.
Switching places with Taotie on the escalator, I rushed towards the arcade.
“…Oh, Ichirou! Where have you been?!”
“Baron Ichirou! You need to take care of the ‘Evil Spirit’!”
Mion and Kiki, both tired from dealing Tao, clung to me.
Tao herself was currently enjoying the racing game she showed interest in before. It seems that Mion had to pay.
“Why is Taowu in the arcade alone? What’s Renie doing?”
“Leaving Taowu alone when she’s new to today’s times makes him a failure as her associate!”
Once Tao got a game over, she got off of the arcade cabinet’s seat. She then turned towards us with a smile and scratched her head.
“That was harder than I thought. I was way down yonder at last place…By the way, Mion and Kiki, callin’ me ‘Taowu’ ain’t cute, so I hope y’all can stop doin’ that. I want y’all to call me Tao. Makes us sound more familiar.”
“S, sure. My apologies, Tao…”
“Okay, Earl Tao.”
The Hokkaido wolf girl called her “Earl.”
Perhaps she felt uneasy calling a “female Evil Spirit” with the title “Baron.” She probably doesn’t mean anything by doing that, but…that would put her at a higher rank than Taotie and me.1The word for baron (男爵) has the character for man (男) in it.
“Mion, thanks for dishin’ out the cost for the game.”
“N, no, there’s no need to be so thankful.”
“By the way, where’s Jyuri at? It seems she ain’t here.”
“Jyuri has a beauty appointment to go through…I can summon her at once if you wish.”
“That ain’t good. The three princesses are Tie’s subordinates. Enough of that though, we still oughta have a good time with just you two! Let’s do that taiko game next!”
Yukimiya Tao pulled Kiki by the hand. It wasn’t a scene the main characters should see.
(Give me a break, it seems that this won’t end with just the photo booth and claw machine…)
I reluctantly explained the situation to the heron girl beside me.
Once I told her that Ryuuga and the others were bowling on the floor above, my excellent associate soon grasped the situation. She’s definitely bride material.
“I see. Tao’s tour and the date with Hinomori Ryuuga you mentioned yesterday are overlapping. So, you’ve been dealing with it by switching places with Taotie.”
“That’s right. So Mion, could you keep Tao company for a bit? If you’re the one handling this, I won’t have any worries.”
“Is it alright spending everything on games? Kiki’s here too, you know?”
“Yeah. Put this under our entertainment expenses. Also, could you lend me some extra cash? I’m already flat broke.”
“That’s fine, but…you won’t get any allowance next month, okay?”
“Can’t you take it out from our entertainment expenses?!”
“No. This money is for your own leisure, isn’t it? Furthermore, you’re using it for Hinomori Ryuuga’s crew.”
She’s definitely bride material. I’m once again reminded of that fact.
(Boss, bad news! There’s another problem!)
Taotie made an emergency call for the umpteenth time.
(Again…? What now?)
(Some crude human arrived and picked a fight with Tenryouin! ‘You’ve got so many women around you, aren’t you lucky?’ is what the stranger said!)
What the hell. Don’t tell me a delinquent’s fighting Agito!
(I’ll head over right away! Listen, no matter what you do, don’t knock out the delinquent! Do not go on a rampage!)
(I know. I don’t want to help Tenryouin anyways. Also, I’m starting to feel pretty tired…)
(Me too! There’s nothing we can do though!)
I quickly took 2,000 yen from Mion and rushed to the third floor.
Ryuuga and Agito’s date has almost fallen apart.
I perfectly timed the moment and switched with Taotie as he travelled down the escalator.
“Boss, Can’t I get some rest? Mion and Kiki are down below, aren’t they?”
“Mion says that she’s worried and wants you to be there. Hold out for just a bit longer.”
“Ugh…today is a bad day.”
Sympathizing with Taotie, who complained as he went down to the second floor, I ran up the escalator. I can’t slack off. Agito’s getting into a fight with a delinquent…or so I thought.
Fortunately, the issue resolved itself quickly.
It seems that the supposed delinquent was Agito’s acquaintance. Furthermore, there was only one person, a high school girl.
“Hey, lady-killer. Did you already make a harem right after transferring to your new school? Karma’s going to strike you down soon.”
“I don’t recall ever making a harem before. They’re all here for other reasons.”
The wild girl laughed loudly while putting her hand on Agito’s shoulder. Judging from her over-familiar attitude, it seems that they know each other well.
(C’mon, I got worked up over nothing…)
Well, it doesn’t seem that she’s a girl with a pure appearance. Her hair was silver, her uniform was tampered with, and she had tan skin. Her neck, arms, and legs were outfitted with jewelry.
She’s probably one of those kuro gyarus. Though upon closer inspection, she seems quite beautiful and her figure is nice as well…what a shame.2A gyaru is someone associated with popular Western fashion trends, tanned skin, dyed hair, and/or excessive use of makeup. Kuro gyarus are a type of gyaru who focus on dark tans.
(I’ve never seen that uniform before. What school does she go to? Does Agito know her?)
Ryuuga’s team and I sent looks of confusion.
With a blank expression, Agito introduced the kuro gyaru in a businesslike manner.
“This is Shima. She’s a guitarist in my band.”
“Nice to meet you. Don’t worry about me. I’m just here to ask Agito for cash.”
With a wink, Shima smiled at Agito. I see, so she’s Agito’s band member?
Considering that Agito acknowledges her, she might be an insane guitarist despite her appearances. What kind of band has its members extorting each other for cash?
“Though this time, you’ve got more pretty ladies with you than ever. Also, is that a guy?”
Ryuuga nodded in response to Shima.
I inadvertently glanced towards the “Swordswoman of the Beheading Dance.” She also looked at me and slightly shrugged her shoulders. Aogasaki is one of few people who know Ryuuga’s true gender.
(Come to think of it, I could have talked to Aogasaki about Agito. Together, we could have brainstormed measures to make him give up on Ryuga…I don’t think including Kurogame would add much to the discussion though.)
While thinking about how I would talk about this with Ryuuga later…Shima continued speaking to Agito. She’s friendlier than I thought.
“Hey, you three. A word of advice, it would be better for you to give up on this antisocial oaf. Aren’t those two guys over there good-looking?”
After saying that, Shima walked towards me for some reason.
I can understand it for Ryuuga, but I’d prefer if she didn’t call me “good-looking.” I silently complained that her words were not a compliment for a friend character.
Suddenly, Shima grabbed my shoulders.
“In particular, this guy here is my type. He might seem plain, but I think I can get used to him…say, why don’t the two of us go somewhere?”
At that moment, Ryuuga, Aogasaki, and Elmira were irked.
Kurogame looked at her companions in confusion as they radiated with anger.
“W, what are you doing?! You’re touching him! With your lumps of fat!”
“Stop that shameful act! If you don’t move away from him, I will consider you an enemy!”
“Haha. Could it be that this guy’s your favorite?”
Elmira and Aogasaki both hesitated to say anything else.
This was a complicated situation for me as well. I don’t think the two protagonists will like me for this…
“That’s enough, Shima. Leave already.”
Agito handed over two 10,000 yen bills while seeming annoyed. I’m grateful for the help, but isn’t that too much?
Shima said “Thank you,” quickly turned around, and left. I guess she was just teasing me. This is just an estimate, but I think they were a size 90F.3That’s a size 40F in terms of US bra sizes
“Excuse my band member’s behavior. Now then, let’s continue our game.”
Agito switched topics as if nothing happened. Ryuuga and the others reluctantly returned to their game.
(At the very least, I’m glad that nothing troublesome happened.)
I decided to focus my attention on bowling…but things didn’t go as planned.
I heard Taotie’s voice inside my head. He was about to cry.
(Boss, this is bad! Tao’s got an amazing score in the taiko game! The only thing she’s super-good at is this taiko game!)
(What kind of news is that?! You don’t need to report that!)
(But people are gathering around her! There are even people taking videos!)
I immediately rushed towards the arcade to keep Tao under control. I also broke up the crowd around her.
(Boss, this is bad! There’s this threatening aura between Tenryouin and Aogasaki! They both like metal music, but it seems their hobbies conflict!)
I immediately rushed towards the bowling alley to calm down Aogasaki. I apologized to Agito.
(Boss! Tao assembled an entire gathering through this rhythm game she’s playing! There’s a crowd around her again!)
I immediately rushed towards the arcade to keep Tao under control. I then banned her from playing rhythm games.
(Boss! Kurogame broke a bowling ball! It broke after she headbutted it as a joke!)
I immediately rushed towards the bowling alley to keep the tortoise under control. I then cleaned up the debris.
(Boss! Kiki’s shaking a claw machine! She can’t get a Spectacle Man monster figure and she’s losing her temper!)
I immediately rushed towards the arcade to keep Kiki under control. I won the figure for her.
(Boss! Panties! Elmira’s panties were visible for a brief moment when she threw a ball! They were surprisingly polka-dotted!)
I immediately──didn’t rush to the bowling alley. That’s no emergency.
“…Ichirou, are you alright? You look like you’re at death’s door.”
Mion looked at me in worry while I was laying down on the arcade floor. I can’t go on, I’m going to die from exhaustion.
However, it should be over soon.
Tao seems satisfied and the bowling game is already over…Ryuuga said she had to return home by evening, so she didn’t plan on visiting any other place.
“I’m alright, Mion. I don’t think there will be any more──”
(Boss! The bill! I’m out of cash!)
I mustered the last of my strength to run towards the bowling alley.
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