H X E 21


Hana looked at the boy shocked. What was his problem. Hana stuck the knife, the one she had been using to slice carrots, into the wood chopping block. She slapped the boy right across his face. She could not stand for his blatant disrespect when his own brother was sick upstairs! Was he not even human. “Your brother is upstairs injured and you are arguing with me over curry. Get your act together.” Hana couldn’t help it. Family was a sensitive trigger for her. Plus, all the guilt she had about Keiji being there in his bed being her fault was consuming her. The rude little brat was an atrocious younger brother. “Vent your frustrations with me after your brother is better.” She grabbed his arm and twisted it behind his back. Hana was not in the mood for this. Her anxiety was already at the point of overtaking her. She began to march the boy up the stairs. “If anyone is going to say anything about respect, then you should be apologizing for insulting half of this country! As well as your brother! You are lucky your brother isn’t here to see you disrespecting a woman! You frustrating little.” Hana cutting off her sentence when she opened the door and pushed him inside the room. Letting go of his arm. “Your brother has come to see if you need anything.” She leaned down and smiled at him. “Right?” Hana giving a look at Yamato. He nodded silently. Something must of happened. Hana then turned to Haru. The idiot must know about this irritating little boys personality problems.


Haru looked up at Minako in shock. Now of all times she was choosing to fire back at him! In front of an injured Keiji! Haru glared at her and leaned closer. “Baka! I wouldn’t have to go that far if you just accepted help from a pervert on the train trying to take pictures of the underneath of your skirt! Instead, you insisted on some weird sense of denseness and pushed on us some female independence bullshit! As I told you in the bathroom, friends help other friends! As for the Hana talk, we all assumed you had one by your complete denseness that you were being gawked at in a bathing suit!” He flicked her back on the forehead. “And I wasn’t the one who decided to bring you here!! It was Baka-chan and Chibi-chan! Not me! All I wanted was to get Keiji some notes and soup!!!” He pointed at Yamato. “You can blame him for missing your ‘appointments’.” His hand moving to point at the anime. “Or that overrated bear anime for why you stayed! I had nothing to do with it.” His hand found its way back to the bed as he growled. “And twice is enough to understand the basics of someones personality! Baka.” He turned his head on her. “You think someone so self assured would be able to accept the fact that people want to do things for her.” He was about to ignore Keiji’s coughing and continue when the door to his room opened. Takashi being led in by Hana. What did the young idiot do to Chibi-chan. The poor kawaii child had a thing about overrecting and trying to be a ninja! He stood up off the bed and glared at Takashi. “Go on then. Ask Keiji what he needs you to do?” He watched Hana kick him further into the room, by shoving his butt. “Go on, or I will make more then just curry in your kitchen. I will make an entire seven course meal. There will be no groceries left at all!”


Takashi glared up at that little blonde brat and Haru before looking at his brother. “You see how she treats your family?” He asked, pushing himself up and turning his face so Keiji could see the hand print across his face. “You said you’d only be having one guest then you show up with four and one of them decides to make use of our kitchen? Did you give her permission?” He narrowed his gaze on Keiji who was looking from Kobayashi-san to his brother.
“Using the kitchen?” Keiji asked a it overwhelmed as he tried to catch up with everything that was being thrown at him. Too bad that was all Takashi needed to hear as he smirked at Kobayashi-san.

“I want them out. You can’t just have whoever you want over without asking and Haru-san can’t just allow people to use our things.” Takashi deadpanned.

Keiji suddenly rose from his spot on the bed. Ignoring any attempts to settle him. His brother stared him down, not about to back down in front of guests. The two stared each other down for a moment. “You will not be rude to my guests Takashi.” His tone was uncharacteristically firm. He knew his brother must have said something to set Kobayashi-san off.

“Do you see-“ Takashi began to speak and when he felt himself getting picked up by his shirt. He saw Takashi move to speak and merely picked him up by his shirt. Takashi was only being so bold because he knew Keiji was injured and in front of people, but he had forgotten to take into account that Keiji had suffered a head injury of all things.

“Apologize and then get out.” Keiji ground out, a chilling air coming over him as his arm began to shake a bit. He let Takashi drop with a thud, watching him closely as the boy ground out an apology. “Again.”

Takashi ground his teeth and bowed slightly. “I apologize.” He shot his brother a look before leaving to go to his room.

When Takashi was gone Keiji was still standing. His expression no longer relaxed, but stern and void of any relaxation he previously felt. “Thank you for coming to check on me. I feel well enough to take care of myself right now.” He gave Haru-san a look that said to get everyone out. He didn’t have enough in reserves to go back his lax demeanor. “I’ll see you in school tomorrow.” He nodded at his guests with a brief smile. That was it. The last of his reserves.


Minako watched everything go down in silence, noting how quickly Haru-san had gotten involved and how quickly Keiji had gone from easy going to on the verge of something far different. It had momentarily forget about her squabble with Haru. When Keiji made it clear he needed everyone to leave she quickly donned her bag. “Thank you for having us over. Get better soon.” She bowed and took hold of Hana-chan and Yamato. It was time to go.


Hana took a step forward towards Takashi when he smirked, but Yamato grabbed her arm sleeve. “Don’t.” He said. Hana shaking at Takashi’s awful rant. Haru taking a moment to glance at her nervously before returning to glare at the little brat. Hana staying silent until he tried to mouth out an apology. She glared at him. “I can’t hear “Coward.” She whispered. Hana looked up at the creepy version of Keiji. “Good. Then I am off the hook.” She said somewhat loud and obnoxiously. Hana was in a crappy mood from the boy. Hana turning her head on him to whisper, “Not if I can avoid it.” Hana finding herself dragged out of the room by Minako. She could feel herself being pulled down the stairs and out the door. Once outside she walked a few steps in the opposite direction of everyone. “I am going. Yamato get her to wherever she needs to go.” Hana didn’t even turn around. All she did was hurry in the direction of downtown. Her father’s friend owned a small dojo. Hana was going to beg him to let her flip things.

Yamato looked at Hana walking away in shock and that at Minako. “Do you know what could of set her off like that?” He turned back around to look at her walk away. “That was our kawaii chibi-chan.” Yamato turning back around to look at Minako. At the sound of Haru leaving the gate, he turned to him. “I am going to go catch up with Hana. Something is wrong. Take care of Minako.” Yamato without missing a beat ran after Hana. She had been heading towards the bus stop. He got to the bus just in time. Yamato electing to sit silently in a seat two rows in front of Hana. He would get off when she did.


Haru clenched his fist. He was not about Keiji’s ENTIRE family. He took a step forward. “Listen here you little brat, the only thing that happened was something being made to heal YOUR brother. Something you should of been doing in the first place!” Takashi’s blatant ignore of him had him seething. Haru watching the whole display with a large deal of satisfaction. When Keiji shot him a look he knew he was in trouble. After everything he did to try and make sure the boy was happy. He even got big boobs over to cheer him up! Haru watching as Minako pulled everyone out of the room. He turned to Keiji and pushed his chest so he fell back in bed. Haru climbing on top of him, to hold down his wrists. Haru had no idea how close he was to crossing the line. He put his forehead on his. It still felt hot. “You still have a fever.” Haru sat up and leaned over to get a bag of ice. He plopped it down on Keiji’s head and slid off. He walked over to the other side of the room and picked up the noted. Haru placing it down on the small desk in the room. He turned around. “Don’t rush to school tomorrow id you still don’t feel well. I can leave the notes at your door.” He picked up his bag and sullenly walked out of the room. He really hated Keiji’s family. When he got out of the house he saw Hana storming off and a frantic Yamato. What was the problem? What did Minako say? Haru’s face lighting up with shock when Yamato ran after Chibi. Haru turning to Minako. “Look. I know we currently hate each other, but I need food. You need food and I am happy with the idea of sitting next to someone silent. I can promise to let you go freely and unencumbered to your appointment after.” Haru grabbed her bag and started to walk in the opposite direction of the way Yamato and Hana ran off in. Haru turning back to Minako, smiling sadly. “I really do mean it. You can leave without the the threat of me delivering you. Just don’t make either of us eat alone right now.” Haru turning his head back around to head to a good grilling place he knew.


Minako stared at Hana-chan in disbelief. The way she had acted towards Keiji just now…’Good. I’m off the hook then’. ‘Not if I can help it’. Hana’s words replayed in her head. And then she had tried to pawn her off on Yamato! The only reason she didn’t say anything was because they had just left a tense situation and Hana was upset. She watched Hana walk off and was about to tell Yamato that he would not be taking her anywhere when he turned around and pawned her off on Haru. Her patience was beginning to run out. Haru grabbing her bag was the tipping point. Minako was about to lose it on him when he flashed her a sad smiled. Crap. She bit her tongue, shoulders slumping a bit as she walked up to meet him. “I can hold my bag.” It was the only thing she could bring herself to say- her tone much more subservient. Reaching out she gently took her bag and put it over her shoulder. She wanted to leave, but he was sad and couldn’t do it. She also wanted to try and cheer him up; even though she hated him, but he had already said he wanted to eat in silence. The entire situation was frustrating. She stayed silent for the rest of their walk while staying a step behind him. When they got to the place he wanted to eat she ordered the smallest portion and paid before going to eat in silence. The scene from Keiji’s room kept playing in her head over and over again. She had questions, but she wasn’t close enough to really have a reason to ask. All she knew was that everyone was on edge, especially Haru. She cleared her throat. “So, from the looks of it you aren’t a fan of Shirokuma Café?” She offered him a small smile. It couldn’t be helped. She couldn’t stand seeing people upset even if she hated them. What ensued was a full in depth analysis of the amazingness of the show with Minako pointing out that Haru was a lot like Grizzly in how intense he was. The conversation did wonders to lift her own mood, but she could only be hopeful about distracting Haru. A little while later Minako emerged from the grilling place with a smile on her face. Picking up her phone she went into a panic when she realized the time. “Why did we stay there so long? I’m so late now!” She tugged hard on his sleeve to pull him down to see the time. “You can’t distract me with Shirokuma Café!” She shook her head with mock disappointment. “Go home and get that sleep you were moaning about earlier.” She gave his shoulder a pat and started off towards her work appointment. Thank goodness they knew her so well.


Haru stood their shocked that Minako was going along with him. He had expected her to grab her bag and run away like a bad ninja. He chuckled to himself as she took her bag back and they headed into the grill place. Haru felt awkward by forcing her to sit down with him silently. As much as he needed to sort though everything in his head there was still the fact that there was a girl eating next to him. He breathed a sigh of relief when she brought up shirokuma cafe. “I don’t hate it. Keiji just loves it way too much.” Haru’s response being cut off by her launch into over detailed explanation. By the end of it he was cracking up laughing. He was holding back tears about being compared to a Grizzly Bear. When they left the resteraunt he found himself being pulled down to look at the time. “It’s only six o’clock.” Haru smiling when she blamed him for her loosing track of time. He didn’t bring up shirokuma cafe. She did. “Shouldn’t you get going..” Haru covering his smile when she started to lecture him. He shouted, “Bye Curry-chan,” as she ran off. Haru turning around laughing. The way home was filled with an odd sense of contentment. How odd.


[Monday Morning]

Minako had just finished her morning run around the track when she spotted Takashi walking past towards the main building. Hmm, what an angry guy. And she’d thought Haru-san had some issues. The alarm on her phone went off telling her to get changed and she darted into the locker room. About twenty minutes later she was standing at her school locker to change out her shoes. Hana-chan should be arriving soon- that thought reminding her of everything Hana-chan had done yesterday. The girl had seemed to a complete flip in personality and then the things she said…Eh, maybe it was in the moment. When she saw Hana-chan she gave her smile. “Good morning!

Keiji had taken his time walking to school in the morning. He had decided not to take any public transport this early in the morning for fear the morning crowd would make things worse for him. When he stepped on campus he got a few waves from his classmates and gave them back before going to the shoe lockers. Glancing over her caught sight of Kobayashi-san and…well he actually didn’t know the other one’s name…Haru-chan’s rival? He walked over. “Good morning.”

Minako looked over in shock at him being here. He didn’t look like he was at a hundred percent yet if she was being honest. “Good morning.” She made sure not to let her voice get too loud as she smiled.

Keiji nodded and turned to Chibi-chan. He bowed slightly. “I wanted to apologize again for my brother’s actions the other day. He shouldn’t have treated you that way. You were a guest in my house and it’s my responsibility.” He moved back to a standing position.


Hana walked into school still a little cranky. She had spent six hours forcing Yamato to fight her and then going to dinner with her. When she got home, Hana could still not sleep well. She silently walked into the school building. When she saw Minako, Hana sighed, “Sorry about being rude to you. The little bra-…brother hit a few personal sore spots.” Hana’s next comment cut off by the sound of Keiji’s voice. Her whole demeanor shifted to guarded and annoyed. Hana frowning at him. “It’s not your fault. Haru shouldn’t of guilted us into coming over.” She turned to Minako. “I will see you in second period, my head hurts.” She stuck her tongue out at Keiji and walked off towards the infirmary. The second she saw him, Hana couldn’t help remember what a little brat his brother had been. She had zero desire to ever face him again. Sadly, she couldn’t solve the situation by never seeing Keiji. He was in student government with her. Hana slammed open the door to the infirmary, shocking quite a few male observers. “I have a migraine.” She walked past the shocked nurse, pulled the curtains closed and collapsed on the bed. She took out her phone.

[Will take notes for me? I’ll buy you food later as a thank you.}]
[(っ- ‸ – ς)]

Hana put the phone on the table besides her and curled up under the sheets. She didn’t want to see that brat or anything that reminded her of him every again. He didn’t understand how important family was.


Again, Hana had managed to stun Minako into a state of silence. She waited until Hana had disappeared to look up at Keiji. “I’m so sorry. I don’t-”

Keiji held up a hand to silence her. “It’s okay.” He was used to things like this happening after getting a peek into his family life. “Have a good day.” He left her to go to class, sinking in his seat and placing the notes that had been dropped off the night before on Haru’s desk. His head hurt a bit, but it had become a much more manageable dull pain.

Minako sighed and looked down at her phone to see the texts from Hana. How could she be so rude to Senpai like that? Putting her phone away she made her way to class and just focused on getting her snack situation set up for the day. “Good morning.” She gave Yamato a smile that faded at bit at his state. “Eh…Yamato-chan, you look a bit…” What was the word even? “Beat?” There were only two explanations she could think of. Either those ruffians who had been messing with Yuri came back or Hana had been more upset than she originally though.

The teacher entered the classroom and she fell silent, turning her attention to the board. When the first class ended, she used the break to use the copy machine. It would be easier to just give Hana copies of the notes. When she got back to the class she placed them on Hana’s desk and walked back out to meet with some of her teammates and talk about the next practice.

Keiji kept an even more low profile than usual in class. It wasn’t a secret that he’d suffered a concussion a couple days prior so most were giving him some space which made him thankful for who was in his class. Even Tetsuo was buffering people away so they didn’t bother him and only communicated with him by text message. It amazed him how overboard Tetsuo went- at first. He soon realized that Tetsuo was earning female attention by acting so protective over him. Of course. Always for the female attention no matter what. When lunch started, he moved out of his chair and made his way downstairs so he could go sit underneath the trees away from the lunch rush.

Minako spotted him from her window seat and started to feel bad again. Poor guy. Why wasn’t Haru with him?! Pushing up from her seat she grabbed her lunches and stacked them up. “I’ll see you guys later.” She gave her friends a wave and made her way out the door. She gave Keiji and polite smile when he noticed her coming up towards him. “Mind if I join you?”

Keiji was a bit surprised to see her of all people, but nodded. “Sure…” It was obviously he couldn’t remember her name.

“Minako-san.” Minako replied while sitting down with ease.

“Sorry.” Keiji apologized only to be waved off by Minako.

“So I’ve decided you’re like Shirokuma-san and Haru-san is like Grizzly-san. Agree?”

Keiji chuckled a bit. “Mm…maybe a bit.”

Minako smiled. Finally a positive expression out of this guy. A part of
her wanted to apologize for how everything had gone the previous night, but didn’t want to bring up a bad memory. When lunch finished she stood up and stretched. “Well, make sure to tell Haru-san what we discussed. Bye Keiji-san.” Minako reclaimed her seat while putting away her bento boxes. She’d actually forgotten to eat half of one from talking so much. Now she had a snack for practice. She turned to look at Yamato (and Hana if she is back). “How was lunch?”

Keiji arrived back at the classroom and took his seat before turning to Haru-san. “Haru-san…I have a new nickname for you. Can I use it?”


Hana awoke from her nap and grabbed her phone from the desk. Yabai! She had slept through lunch. She burst out of the room, ignoring the nurse shouting after her and ran straight to the classroom. She took a deep breath and opened the door. Immediately bowing apologize to the current teacher, Marie. She was in charge of English. Hana was somewhat fond of her, because of her British accent. It was much more posh then her mother’s. “I am so sorry, Sensei. I wasn’t feeling well and lost track of time in the nurse’s office.” Marie Sensei laughed it off. “It’s fine, Kobayashi-san. Go on and take your seat. We are doing a group assignment. Tatsumiya-san and (forgot Yamato’s last name and too lazy to look up) can catch you up. Hana rushed to her seat and sat down. She frowned at Minako. ” I am so sorry. You must of had to copy so many notes. Let me finish the rest of this.” She then turned to a very sore looking Yamato. ” I am so sorry about yesterday.” Yamato sighed. “As long as you make it up to me. Essay writing is impossible for me.” Hana nodded her head. “Of course.” She leaned in closer to him. “You wouldn’t mind helping me with math then…” Yamato hit her on the head. “Baka. Now isn’t the time to ask for more help.” Hana rubbed the top of her head and frowned. “I know.” He laughed softly and pushed the instruction sheet over. “You are fluent in english right?” Hana nodded her head. “Yes.” He tapped the assignment sheet. “Then help us come up with a presentation topic for the assignment.” Hana picked up the sheet. “Prepare an introduction of yourself, your group and your chosen topic within Japanese culture. Assume you are giving a presentation to class. You may choose the age group and background of those you would be presenting too. If you present to a Japanese class your topic must be on a specific part of a foreign culture. Due Friday.” Hana put the paper down. “Why don’t we present to children? We can easily present the alphabet and two to three children songs. Minako and I can do the hardest part of explanation of difference in young education. We can choose Britain or where Minako’s foreign parent is from. You can do the majority of introductions to balance it out?” Yamato sighed. “That is such an obvious choice.” Hana looked at them confused. “I don’t see why that’s a problem. We can always add more if we think we haven’t done enough. It is a straight forward and simple way to introduce ourselves and cultural idea of choice. Most of the people in this class are complete beginners at English. The harder the topic the more confusion?” She turned to Minako, “What do you think?” Hana spending the rest of the class time outlining possible ways to present their topic. The following classes trying her hardest to not zone ….

After classes she bid goodbye to Minako and Yamato. They both had their after school clubs. Hana begrudgingly heading to the Student Council office. She opened the door and was relieved to see the only ones in the room to be the President and his subordinates. Hana walking into the room. The President immediately standing up and slapping the desk. “Kobayashi-san, how could you already start trouble for the Student Council.” She looked at them confused. He pulled out his phone. A video playing of her interaction with Kazue-san and her minions from the karaoke place. Hana strode over and took the phone from his hands. “How did you …What did you..Who did you…” She started to mumble. The president shifting his pose. “Kobayashi-san, I don’t think you realize how serious this.” She bowed to the president. “I am so sorry. If there’s anything I can do to fix the situation-” He slapped the desk and she stood up straight. The tall green hard member, whose name she could not remember, turned the student comment box upside down. A flood of letters piled onto his desk. Hana looking at the President in shock. He leaned forward with both of his hands on the desk. “Kobayashi-san, the suggestion box is over flowing with support for your speech. I knew you would boost popularity with your proportions, but this is just too much to handle right away! Who is going to organize all of these comments and suggestions?” Hana’s shock increasing. “Eh.” He leaned off the desk and stroke yet another pose. “I don’t think you understand how serious of a matter this is. We must control our social growth. It is the upmost importance for us.” Hana stating once again, “Eh.” He leaned forward and pushed his glasses up. “You first duty as Vice President is to organize all of this. Thank every student who gave you positive comments- IN PERSON-, respond to every new safety suggestion and organize a plan on how we can implement better changes.” Hana saying in a very loud and exaggerated manner. “Eh!?!?” The Student Council Treasurer and Secretary started to clap on the sidelines. The President pushing the large stack of tiny square paper towards her. “Go on then.” Hana nodded her head, scooped them all back into the box and sat down at the large table they had in the room. She dumped the out once again and started to organize them. Hana putting all the positive comments aside to deal with last. She really didn’t want to do the thank you part. She was so busy organizing she didn’t hear the person entering the room.


Haru turned to Keiji, who had MYSTERIOUSLY and RUDELY disappeared during lunch. “A new nickname? Who gave me a new nickname?” He frowned in his desk. “Was it Chibi-chan? Is this revenge for her insistent kawaii-ness. If so you may definitely not saddle me with some cute name.” He shook his head back and forth. “Absolutely not. No matter how frustrated you are with me.” When Haru heard the name his mouth grew wide and he hit his desk. “We will talk about this later.” He turned his head on Keiji and instead decided to nap during their next class. Haru only talking to Keiji about notes for the rest of the day. After classes he stood up and turned to Keiji, “We will resume the talk after clubs. I will be in front of the food cart.” Haru quickly leaving the room. He should of never went to save Yuri. Everything was now a chaotic mess. Haru grumpily making his way to Kendo. He changed into his uniform and immediately chose to practice sword strikes alone in a corner. Haru zoning out for the entirety of the club. The majority of his strikes meant to hit Takashi or Tetsuo in many places. A few meant for the annoying combination of Curry-chan, Baka-chan and Chibi-chan. They were responsible for this new found chaos. A few strikes for Kazue appeared now and then. Anxiety about the storm that could be coming. Lastly, a few reserved for Yuri. Haru was approaching his patience with absurd amount of texts, pop ups, and shit she asked of him. His concentration at the end of the club being broken by their female manager. For the life of him he could never remember the annoying third year’s name. It started with a T…a K…a M? It was probably a T. He had bad luck with people with T names. When she handed him a towel he took it and headed to the locker room. Haru intent on ignoring the looks of envy and sound of sighs that seemed to linger behind him. After practice he walked out of the school and headed to the food truck. Keiji wouldn’t be out for awhile, but their was a bench behind it, cheap food and he had brought his Ds and a sketching pad. Haru could wait.


Minako was looking down at her own instruction sheet when Hana arrived. “It’s fine. I left them on your desk.” She replied, taking the moment that Hana and Yamato went back and forth to look over her own instruction sheet. Resting her chin on her palm she listened as Hana gave her idea and Yamato shot it down only to get an immediate retort from Hana. Presenting in English wasn’t something she was exactly fond of doing, so she’d have preferred to be left out of it. Too bad Hana turned to her to be the tie breaker. Of course. Minako thought it over for a minute. “I think we should let one of the other groups do that since it’s so easy. Especially since they are on the beginner side like you said.” She sat up. “We have English speakers, so why not present to a first year High School class about an aspect of foreign culture that we know they’re interested in. That way we’re completing our assignment while making it interesting for our classmates?” She offered with a shrug, popping a piece of Pocky into her mouth.

When classes let out Minako made her way to the locker rooms and changed into her tennis uniform before meeting the team out on the court. She took the time to stretch before they started drills. The captain was a bit of a hard ass, but knew their stuff. After finishing their drills, they were given about ten minutes for break and then they were paired up for practice rounds. Minako was paired with a girl named Setsuna Ueno. At first they just planned on doing a few rounds but that quickly turned into an actual match between the two girls. The other team members soon gathered around to watch the two girls going at it. The two girls actually got along quite well, but when they were pit against each other on the court it was becoming painfully clear that they both became ruthless players.

Keiji gave Haru a nod, not wanting to deal with Haru’s potential moodiness if he said he had planned on just going home after class. A chat couldn’t hurt and by the time he got out of student government some food would do him good. He arrived at student government ten minutes later to see the President and his lackeys talking about something excitedly; well- the President was excited. He attempted to walk past without getting noticed, but that darn president spotted him in a heartbeat. He listened as he was given a brief rundown of what the Vice President would be doing and since he was a secretary he would be assigned to helping her get the deed done. Keiji moved to speak and was immediately shut down. Damn president.

“Hai.” He made his way over to the table Hana was already sorting through the notes. “Kobayashi-san, the President sent me to help you with everything.” He explained before taking a seat one chair away from her. “What do the different piles mean?” After her reaction to him earlier he figured it would be best to just keep everything professional. His brother had finally told him what he said to Kobayashi-san the previous night and had earned quite the consequence. Regardless, he knew he had to take responsibility for Takashi’s actions. He glanced over at Hana to see how she was taking him being near her again.


Hana had been so absorbed by sorting she hadn’t even noticed Keiji had sat down next to her, let alone arrive in the room. She looked up from her piles of paper startled, “Senpai? When did you get here?” Hana turning to look at the President who was lecturing the other two members. She looked back down at her piles of paper that had not even begun to look sorted. Hana really didn’t want to work with him, but perhaps he had a use. She looked back at Keiji. “Right now, I am putting them in two piles. The one on the left is for suggestions for me to organize and plan later. The one on the right is positive comments…” She pushed the entire pile towards him. “The President asked me to go thank all of them in person. If you could organize what room everyone is in and the easiest way to reach them that would be helpful.” She reached forward to pull her own pile towards her. Hana continued to sort in silence. She had further divided her piles into related categories of: public safety, school events, outside of school meetups, future trip suggestions. However, even she felt awkward after the minutes of silence. Hana took a deep breath. She did not want to do this, but they were going to work together the entire shcool year. Hana turned to look at Keiji, “I know you have a horrible brother, but I shouldn’t of been so rude in your house….” Hana looked away before she finished the thought. “Sorry. He hit a sore sport for me and I overreacted.” She turned back to face him and stuck her hand out. She really didn’t want to be doing anything with this guy, but she was in survival mode at this point. “Let’s do our best on this awful assignment.” Hana reaching to grab the list of names he had already gotten through. She turned to him. “Why don’t we do the first ten today?” She kept the list in her hand and walked over to the President. She briefly explained where they were going and walked over to the door. Hana smiling at Keiji, “You are coming too.” She walked out the door and waited a little down the hall. She read over the list. As she was scanning the list a group of third years came zipping past her in the halls. Something about a tennis match? Hana tried her best to step out of the way, but her hip hit the side of the stairwell and she found herself falling forwards. Again!?!?!


Keiji nodded while continuing to sort through the pile. He initially separated them by year; focusing on the third and second years since he knew enough of them to reorganize them according to afterschool activities. “You don’t need to apologize.” He didn’t want to discuss his brother and figured she was just trying to quell any awkward tension. Besides, after her attitude towards him earlier there wasn’t much she could say to correct it. When she stuck out her hand he handed over the give her the list he’d completed so far. He followed her lead in silence, slipping his hands in his pockets as they went. His interest of peeked at the sight of so many third years rushing past. He picked up on something about a tennis match? It was way too early for there to be a match, wasn’t it? One of the larger third years bumped him in passing, but Keiji was quick to steady himself on the railing. A quick glance forward proved Kobayashi-san wasn’t nearly as…well- coordinated. Taking a few steps forward he struck his arm out to wrap around her waist and pull her back against him while his free hand gripped the hand rail. This girl shouldn’t be allowed to use stairs. She was a hazard to any one below her! Maybe he would put a note in anonymously…. When Keiji saw she was steadied he released her. “That was close.” Moving his hands back into his pockets he moved past her. “The first name on the list should be in room 2-H, right?”



Hana found herself being steadied by Keiji. She looked up at him in shock. “Thanks” She whispered. Hana watching him walk past her towards and too the first classroom. She ran down the stairs to catch up to him. Hana looking down at the list. “Hai. His name was Aguni Hajimi. She walked slightly behind Keiji. He was her meat shield after all. Hana remaining silent until they reached the door. She walked in front of him to open the door and bow slightly. A small collection of students were preparing to leave school. Hana walked up to them. “Aguni Senpai?” One of the shorter boys turned around to face her. He seemed shocked. “Hana-san?” She nodded her head. “On behalf of the Student Council I wanted to thank you for your support.” She bowed one again. “Arigatou.” When she stood up straight Hana smiled as best she could. She was very aware of the other boys hitting his arm. The two girls in the group staring. “The Student Council is now rewarding those who comment or leave suggestions with a free snack ticket. You can collect yours later this week.” She turned around to leave when one of his friends caught her arm. Hana reached in front of her and pulled Keiji closer before turning around. “Hai.” He looked at her up and down. “Kohai, lets exchange numbers.” The boys leaned forward eagerly. The girls reluctantly pulling out their phones. Hana frowned. “I apologize. I don’t have my phone on me. You can always find me again or leave a comment in our box.” The dropped their phones disappointed. She bowed once again before leaving the room. Once she closed the door, Hana pulled out her phone. She quickly turned it off and stashed it back into her pocket. She had to cover one of her bases. She looked down the list and pulled Keiji towards the next room. The following 9 rooms seemed to follow the same pattern. When she was done, Hana pulled out her phone and turned it back on. There was a missed message from Yamato about getting takoyaki. She quickly texted him back.


Hana stashed her phone away and started to head back to the Student Council room. When she got there she saw the room was empty. Hana quickly grabbing her bag. She turned to Keiji. Hana grabbing her bag. She looked up at Keiji. “Would you like to walk to the Takoyaki stand? I will buy you takoyaki in thanks for using you as a shield.”


Keiji had to cover his mouth to keep from laughing. Now only had Kobayashi-san lied to that boy, but then she’d even turned off her phone! It was just too much, who would have thought she’d be so clever. The longer he thought about it though he figured things like this might happen more often than he’d like to think given how kawaii she was. The following nine visits seemed to bring out a very obvious trend: any time she had to thank a guy they immediately tried to get her number, she would grab him and make an excuse, they would look at him, he would look back at them, and then everyone would part ways. After the fourth instance he came to a conclusion; Kobayashi-san attracted too much male attention. It was like walking around with an idol. When they got back to the room, he tossed his bag over his shoulder and had already taken his first step towards the door when Hana spoke up.

“Sure.” He agreed, he waited a moment for her to gather her come over and led the way down to the stand. Takoyaki sounded pretty good right about now. He gave a small wave a to a few of his classmates as they passed, staying pretty silent as they went. He idly wondered if she had brought him along as a shield to the Takoyaki stand and intended to buy him food as payment… regardless he would never let her pay for any of his food. He made a straight line for the stand, stopping dead in his heels about half way. Why? Because he realized he had just passed Haru who he was supposed to be meeting right now. He turned and look over his shoulder at his fellow classmate.

“Grizzly-san, takoyaki?”


Classroom Of The elite OP

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