“Ah! I’m so tired. It’s been a while since I had to talk so much”
When she finished talking, Kamuro looked at me with the same serious expression she had from the very beginning.
“In other words, I am a regular shoplifter”
“Well, Sakayanagi keeps me busy, so I do not have the time for shoplifting”
Although it is not the norm, she did not seem to feel altogether bad while admitting it.
Kamuro was probably not needed by anyone up until now. So, there was darkness in her.
But if there’s anything required by Sakayanagi, is to not have committed any crime.
Thus, Sakayanagi used this quite well. If Kamuro keeps shoplifting, eventually she will get caught.
I don’t know what happens outside of the school premises, but this is a school limited territory.
If the phenomenon that the stock inventory doesn’t match keeps happening, then the truth will be revealed, soon.
If so, it is clear that Class A will suffer more damage.
“Sakayanagi told me during the training camp that your secret and Ichinose’s secret are the same.”
This means, if all these stories are true, that Ichinose has shoplifting experience.
“But what are you pursuing by revealing your past to me?”
Depending on the case, it wouldn’t be impossible to look at her past and investigate.
If that happens only Kamuro will suffer the consequences.
“I don’t really like Sakayanagi or Ichinose, but the fact that Ichinose was shoplifting, is to be honest, shocking to me. She is so popular that she should be satisfied with what she has, but I guess the same thing could be said for me”
Kamuro laughed in self-mockery
“Stop Sakayanagi. You are the only one who can do it”
“In other words, you want me to help Ichinose?”
“Yes. As things are now, Ichinose will be crushed for sure. Not physically, but mentally.”
It was really difficult for me to ascertain whether what Kamuro had just said was true or not.
Even if the store were to notice a difference between its physical stock and its digital stock, it would still be very difficult to determine the cause of this loss. It could still be an employee’s processing mistake. Even if she claimed that she had begun shoplifting after enrolling in this school, she was not stealing repeatedly the same item several times. It was a one time action.
It would also be impossible for me to ask the store to show me the footage from the surveillance cameras.
If there was one measure that could be taken, that would be to report Kamuro’s actions to the school authorities and the convenience store. But, even if her story was true, that would be very disadvantageous for me.
Honestly, even if the whole of her story came out to be true, still, I wouldn’t be willing to follow her words.
It may be true that she is dissatisfied with Sakayanagi, but by betraying her, while asking for help from someone like me, who is an enigma to her, showed to me that she lacks in incentive.
Then what was the point of that sequence?
If I think about it reasonably, this whole plan must have conducted under Sakayanagi’s instructions.
She used Ichinose as a line that she can lead her to a direct confrontation with…. me
“Are you saying that I’m lying to you?”
After a lengthy consideration, Kamuro broke the silence.
“Honestly there is absolute no guarantee that you are not lying”
Of course, as far as I’m concerned, after listening to her story, I am quite certain that it is true.
But I had not noticed it, before, mainly, because Kamuro was too close to Sakayanagi.
“….. I see. I totally, get it, in that case, should I proceed and prove it to you?”
“Can you prove it?’
Then Kamuro took out her student identification card and handed it to me.
“Now, wait and don’t lock the door”
As soon as she said that, she left the room.
No way, are you going to steal something for me in order to prove that you are a shoplifter?
I waited for a little while looking at Kamuro’s student ID card meaninglessly and after 10 minutes Kamuro came back.
She took something out of her clothes and showed it to me.
It seems like my premonition hit the mark.
“First, I thought I should take a pack of gum or something like that, but I chose beer, instead. This way you could give me some credit”
Certainly, if it’s gum, it can be purchased by anyone. Also, it could be possible for her to deceive me by buying it, beforehand. But when it comes to alcohol, the story is entirely different. Even if she had to go and borrow someone else’s ID student card from outside, still it would not be possible for her to buy an alcoholic beverage. Because, it is impossible for a student to buy age-restricted products.
Also, it is totally unrealistic to use teachers or other working staff of the premises. This was an item that had been definitely stolen.
Have you done it so you can gain my trust?
“Do you get it, now?”
As she was saying that Kamuro tried to put away the can of beer, but I reached out my hand to grab it.
“Let me see if it’s the real thing. It could be fake”
“… That’s stupid. How could I make something like this?”
Kamuro seemed reluctant for a moment, but soon it handed it over to me.
It was ice-cold as if it had just been bought from the convenience store.
I rotated the can slowly. It was definitely a real alcoholic drink.
“If you think it’s necessary, you could keep it or something?.”
If such a thing were to be found in my room, it would be troublesome.
Kamuro took the alcoholic drink from my hand and with her hand started playing by tossing the can in the air.
“Anyway, do you believe me, now?”
“You showed me the real thing. I guess I have to believe you”
“And what does that exactly have to do with me?”
“There is no one in this school to whom I can speak except you. That’s the only thing that you should know for now.”
I picked up the cup of cocoa that I had prepared for Kamuro. I was sure that she would not even take a sip. It was lukewarm since more than 10 minutes had passed already and she did not taste it at all.
“I have no merit from all this”
She seemed satisfied and with that Kamuro stood up.
“I’m looking forward to what the end will be”
Just like that, Kamuro ended the conversation and headed to leave my room.
“Wait a minute”
“… What is it?”
“You forgot your student ID card”
As she realised that she had forgotten about it, Kamuro grabbed the ID card with the free hand that did not hold the alcoholic drink.
Soon after, Kamuro left.
However, she had raised a troublesome question.
Is it really alright to ignore Ichinose’s current situation?
“No…I am not so certain about it”
Rather, it may be handy to take advantage of this opportunity.
I left my room holding my ID student card and my cell phone and headed towards the convenience store.
On my way there, I received a call from Horikita’s older brother.
I thought that I could relax after my uninvited guest left, alas….
Still, there it was, a call from someone unexpected. This was not going to be just nonsense talking.
“There are a few things I want to talk to you about”
Just after pressing the answer button this was the first thing that Horikita’s older brother said.
“Are you saying, it is urgent?”
“It may be too late, depending on the situation. It’s about my sister”
“… About your sister?”
This was also unusual.
The older Horikita would never bring anything up about his sister unless there was a serious situation.
“Kushida Kikyou made contact with Nagumo Miyabi”
I was surprised, but at the same time I was amazed by the speed of Horikita’s information network.
“I thought that you were surrounded by enemies. Good for you for acquiring such a piece of information. Who did you get the information from?”
“This piece of information came from Kiriyama. During the last training camp a huge rift happened in my relationship with Nagumo. I am sure that he is planning something. I have no other choice but to make my move as well.”
Vice- President Kiriyama, huh?
As I was thinking in silence, Horikita’s older brother, continued:
“I understand, you cannot possibly trust him completely, right?”
“Well, it’s not like I know Kiriyama as well as you do”
“That’s OK. You are always on the side of doubt”
As the former president of the student council Horikita approaches other students, whether it is Kiriyama or Nagumo with a sense of trust. He maintains this trust until he believes that he is betrayed, even if it is just a suspicion. An act that I cannot possibly immitate.
“So, what happened?”
“She asked for his help about expelling Horikita Suzune from the school. A very bold move”
“I wonder what happened that made her change her strategy”
Kushida promised to Horikita, as a penalty of losing in a bet that she would not interfere with her any longer.
That being said, she was not willing to keep that promise.
Just as she had used Ryuuen in order to achieve her goal, then she came in contact with Nagumo. After seeing what Nagumo had done during the training camp, it’s not strange that she reached out to him.
Of course, even Kushida was aware, that every time she drove Horikita into a corner, she also trapped herself. But even though small sacrifices could not be avoided, her readiness was obvious.
Honestly, I thought that it was too early for her to approach Ryuuen, but it was not a bad idea to side with Nagumo. If she was thinking of cooperating with someone one year her senior, when she is about to graduate no one will know the truth about her.
However, this applies only in case Nagumo is a reliable person.
“Nagumo or someone close to him will soon take steps against Suzune”
“Then, what do you want me to do? Are you asking me to protect your younger sister?”
“Even if it were for Suzune to leave this school in the future, that’s her own responsibility. Kushida said that it’s your presence that is a serious nuisance.”
Even if Nagumo was not very interested in me, hearing my name popping repeatedly, may have caused him to notice me.
It means that if I do not break the connection soon, more trouble will follow.
“Is there any possibility that Nagumo and Hashimoto contacted each other?”
“Why would you ask such a thing?”
“I felt that there was a slight change in the attitude of Hashimoto between the beginning and the end of the training camp. I wasn’t sure, but the other day when I met him, I began to suspect that his change was not due to my imagination. At the end of the training camp, Hashimoto asked someone to learn about me.”
There is an extremely limited number of students that they are in a position to know things about me in order to inform Hashimoto.
“It is as you say. During the training camp Nagumo talked to Hashimoto about you. But, perhaps Hashimoto has not yet come up with the answer that you are the student who was manipulating Suzune”
So, maybe he is poking around to find out the truth.
“I should not probably asking you this, but, are you dissatisfied?”
“No. Even if I had heard about it earlier, the situation would still be the same.”
I suppose so. Muttered Horikita’s older brother.
When you are a student of the Sakayanagi faction, it is of trivial matter that you must mistrust me.
No matter how much they search, they will find nothing as long as I do nothing.
In case Sakayanagi had taken measures, she would have talked about them. It is way easier to deal with Nagumo or Ryuuen.
It is somewhat a problem to stand still and wait at this point when Nagumo has all his bases covered.
“I just gave you the information. You should decide what to do from now on.”
The call disconnected.
In this school, that type of information, means a lot. Every day someone tries to get someone else involved in a plot. In that sense, the information that Horikita’s older brother gave me, is useful, as he is one of my information sources. While he lacks the dexterity of Nagumo and he does not have an extensive information network like him, it’s much higher in terms of credibility and accuracy.
In any case shots have been fired. In order to stop it quickly, I have to make the first move.