The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

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CozyRavioli
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The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:08 pm

The Akira-te Kid

Introduction:

Hello cripple enthusiasts,

First of all, thank you for deciding to check out my story. This post's only purpose is to provide some background info for myself, how this entire thing came about, and to serve as a table of contents for each individual chapter. At some point maybe I'll convince one of the children I have locked in the party cage to draw me a cover picture for this. I would do it myself but my graphics tablet is broken. That, and I'm shit at drawing. Combination of the two, really. I have no huge aspirations, I just want this to be a fun little thing that I can call my own and revisit every week or so. Something to enjoy working on recreationally, and a means to improve my writing skills with feedback from you more experienced folks, hopefully.

I guess the elephant in the room here is the Akira route that's already been finished. It's one of the most popular stories on here, sitting at around a quarter of a million views. It's well deserved in my opinion, as it's personally my favourite piece of KS fanfiction. I've read through it twice in it's entirety. I could never hope to reach that level of quality with my own story. It's just not reasonable, given my skill level. My story is in no way a response to that story, nor is it affiliated with it in the slightest. I'm just writing this fan route because Akira is my favourite character, and people very rarely write about her. Besides, there are dozens of epilogues and the like for all of the other girls, so I hope someone starting up a second Akira route isn't too egregious of an offence.

Special thanks to Sloth4 for proof-reading and editing!
Check 'em out here:
memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=20772
https://www.fanfiction.net/u/839525/SLotH4

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Image

Table of contents:

ACT 1 - Grasshopper

Part 1 - 'Walk in the Middle'
Part 2 - 'Of Mice and Miyagi'
Part 3 - 'Necronomicon'
Last edited by CozyRavioli on Fri Apr 06, 2018 3:19 am, edited 9 times in total.
I like to think my cats would wait a few days to eat me if I died in my apartment.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
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The best god dang editor in the business, I tell you h'what:
Sloth4 (Story editer for Akira-te Kid)

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CozyRavioli
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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:09 pm

ACT 1 – Grasshopper

Part 1: ‘Walk in the Middle’

_________________________________________

I don’t know what I’m doing wrong.

It’s a frustrating thought, one that’s been crossing my mind a lot lately. I try to brush it off and not dwell on it too much, but it’s especially hard to ignore it in the rare moments I have to myself, such as this godawful morning routine.

Leaning against my desk, gripping my glass of lukewarm tap water, I allow myself a few short breaths to prepare before I down the first of the larger tablets I need to take each day in order to survive. In the beginning, when I had first started taking my medication, I had opted to take the smaller pills first and work my way up to the big ones. These days I’d rather just get the uncomfortable part over and done with. I hope the gag reflex eventually goes away with experience.

…Not that I would ever want to take advantage of the lack of a gag reflex.

I look over to the alarm clock on my bedside table and see that there’s still fifteen minutes left before I have to go meet up with Emi for my daily exercise. That’s fifteen more minutes to feel sorry for myself and ponder how I could have possibly handled my situation differently.

One ungraceful flop later, and I’m lying down on my bed once more, staring up at the tiled ceiling of my still unfamiliar dorm room.

I’ve been here at Yamaku less than a week, yet it feels as if it’s already been a month. It’s funny how good times pass in an instant, but when things get rough it seems to last forever. ‘Father Time’ must be a bit of a prankster.

You feel fantastic. Surrounded by fluffy, white snow, standing opposite a blushing classmate, letting it sink in that someone as cute as her has confessed her feelings for you. That’s over almost instantly. In exchange for that one fleeting moment of happiness you’re rewarded with cardiac arrest, a lonely hospital room, and months of suffering. Then you’re shipped off to a new school which caters exclusively to defective misfit toys such as yourself.

I turn my head to look out my window, but the sun is just coming out now so I can’t see too much outside. Instead, I’m met with the gaze of my own reflection. Brown eyes and messy brown hair. Not great looking, but not ugly. Generally inoffensive, other than the irritating, upright strands of hair in the middle of my scalp which refuse to stay down despite eighteen years of my best efforts. That, and I cut my cheek shaving ten minutes ago. My hands have gotten shaky the past couple of days.

“Hello, Hisao.”

He doesn’t respond because I don’t let him. Having conversations with yourself is weird.

After taking one last, deep breath to steady my nerves I force myself off of my mattress and shoot forwards toward my bedroom door, grabbing my water bottle in the process. I take special care to proceed slowly past the door of my neighbour, Kenji Setou, lest I wake him up and get assaulted by yet another diatribe against anyone and everyone who had the audacity to be born with a vagina.

Deep down, I know that I shouldn’t be so antagonistic with Kenji. He’s mostly harmless, and clearly has some of his own issues to deal with. In his own twisted way, he’s gone through a lot of effort to make me feel welcome at Yamaku. He can be counted among the handful of people I’ve tentatively come to consider friends since transferring here. As a result, he’s also a contributing factor to my current anxiety.

Upon reaching the main entrance to the boys’ dormitory and heading outside onto the school grounds, I immediately notice how nice the weather is. The rising sun casts a warm, orange glow over the school building and reflects beautifully off of the freshly mowed, dew-laden grass surrounding the area. The pleasant sight stands in stark contrast to my current mood, so much so that it’s almost insulting. It’s like the world is mocking me. I do my best to shake away the cynical thought and continue my brisk walk toward the track.

Admittedly, maybe this is all my fault. It could be that I’m going about adjusting to my new life incorrectly. On paper, what I’ve done seems perfectly reasonable. When someone is thrust into a brand new school, especially in the middle of their graduating year, they’re typically encouraged to put themselves out there and make friends.

By the time I had arrived at Yamaku, all of the other students were firmly set in their cliques and social circles. Everyone else had had years to become familiar with one another. They had the opportunity to slowly become acquainted with their peers and allow bonds to form organically. I had no such opportunities, so I’ve had to settle for a more active approach.

It’s one thing to become disabled, but I refuse to be considered an outcast in a school for the disabled. My pride can only take so many hits. Whenever I’ve been presented with the chance to form friendships with my classmates I’ve jumped at it. It has quickly gotten out of hand.

It’s been one of the most daunting tasks I’ve ever faced, second only to coping with my newfound heart condition. I never had that many buddies at my old school, so trying to juggle a myriad of burgeoning friendships at once is more emotionally taxing than I could have ever anticipated. It’s borderline torture.

I know that I should be grateful for the company, especially when said company mostly consists of beautiful girls, but when you become friends with someone, it’s like signing a contract of sorts. An unspoken agreement to spend a certain amount of time with them and to assist them with any problems or baggage they might have. Sounds easy enough, but it gets complicated when you’re dealing with an entire roster of disabled women. I’m being run ragged. Just thinking about my average day is enough to kick start a headache.

I wake up early every morning to meet with my running partner. She can be a tad overbearing, but she’s nice enough. Once I’ve completed my laps I head over to the nurse’s office at his behest so he can monitor my condition. It’s hard not to view this as a chore, even though it’s for my own benefit.

The school day then commences proper and I go about attending my classes. My science teacher has taken a special interest in me and has given several not-so-subtle hints that science is a field I should pursue after graduating, even though I haven’t even been here a week yet. I suppose he was particularly impressed with how rapidly I’ve caught up with the rest of the class, and the ease with which I tend to finish assignments. It’s flattering, but I haven’t made any decisions yet and his insistence in the matter is very grating.

Throughout my various classes I’m constantly pestered by the only two members of the Student Council, as they remain steadfast in their quest to recruit me into their freaky cult. I’ve made my reluctance no secret, but they insist on trying to persuade me anyway. They’re like rabid pit bulls with blue and pink fur, respectively. Also, one of the dogs has drills for ears.

I get a small break at lunchtime, when I usually eat with two quiet and more reserved girls in a room that rarely sees use otherwise. They’re both a pleasure to sit with, though one of the pair is so anxious around me that I can’t help but feel as if I’m not truly welcome there. I don’t mean to impose, but I despise eating in the cafeteria with the rest of the herd, so I hope she doesn’t mind too much.

After finishing up my afternoon classes, I head back to the dorm for the night, but usually get seized along the way by an eccentric, armless painter from the art club. She asks for my help with fetching and mixing her paints while she works on her mural for the upcoming school festival. Half of my time with her is spent mixing, while the other half is spent attempting to decipher the nonsense that comes out of her mouth. It’s as if she speaks in hieroglyphs.

When I do finally manage to retire to my room, I have a couple hours left to catch up on any homework I may have, and what little time I have left to myself is robbed by my neighbour kicking my door down to see if ‘they’ have wiretapped my room or not.

I live for the moments when I manage to slip away from my responsibilities and read a chapter or two of a good book. However, like any good thing, my time with my books is rare and brief. People say that escapism is unhealthy, but it’s one of the only things keeping me sane.

Even my dreams aren’t my own. What should be my time to recuperate is often plagued by nightmares of snowy forests and infinite, sterile white hallways that reek of chemicals and desperation.

I should be thrilled that so many people are willing to spend time with me. I just never thought it would involve so much… work. I’m running on fumes 24/7. It’s like someone has strapped two bandoliers equipped with dozens of Tamagotchis across my chest and expects me to keep all of my little digital pets alive. What a mess.

I just want people to like me for once. No matter what it takes.

As I move from the grass onto the smooth, synthetic surface of the school’s running track, I spot a familiar figure near the bleachers bouncing up and down on her prosthetics impatiently.

Emi Ibarazaki. ‘The fastest thing on no legs.’ Star of the school’s track team. A diminutive, bubbly girl with bright green eyes and strawberry-blonde hair that’s been styled into twintails. She can more often than not be seen in her running attire, which consists of a pink t-shirt and a pair of dangerously revealing red bloomers. It makes me feel rude admitting it, but her most striking feature is her legs, or lack thereof. I haven’t asked her how she lost them. If she wanted me to know she would tell me.

It would be hypocritical of me to judge her for keeping her cards close to her chest. I’ve been equally hesitant to let people know about my arrhythmia.

Despite her situation, her impairment definitely hasn’t done much to slow her down, figuratively or literally. I admire her resolve. I wish it were possible to siphon some of her energy for my own usage, seeing as she has plenty to spare. Come to think of it… wanting to absorb the energy out of someone is oddly reminiscent of something Kenji told me recently. During one of his late night visits, he had tried to convince me that women were able to suck out a man’s life-force.

Is that why I’m so miserable and exhausted? Have I been infected by the femini— NO. Absolutely not. Stop that right now, me.

I swiftly drive away the greasy-haired, Coke-bottle glasses wearing gremlin that had momentarily infiltrated my thoughts as I approach Emi.

“Good morning, Emi,” I say with as much joviality as I can hope to muster.

“May as well be good afternoon with how late you are, Hisao. And here I thought you enjoyed spending time with me,” she throws back at me, masking herself in one her most lethal, signature puppy-dog pouts that I’ve yet to witness. It makes me want to donate money to a local animal shelter whenever she subjects me to it.

I’m taken aback for a moment. If nothing else, I pride myself on my punctuality. Surely she must be overreacting.

A quick glance down at my watch confirms my suspicions.

“I’m only four minutes late, Emi.”

“That’s four minutes you should have been running, Hisao. Maybe if you had run here we wouldn’t be in this predicament in the first place,” she retorts, sporting a menacing grin.

“We’re in a predicament now? Over losing four minutes?” I ask, looking at her inquisitively to gauge whether or not she’s being serious. It’s hard to tell with her because she uses the same smile when she’s being mischievous and when she’s really pissed. Neither option is good, but I would still prefer the former.

She looks back at me through half-lidded eyes. “You’re doing two extra laps today,” her smile twists a bit further up on either side before continuing, “and you’d better win me something nice at the festival tomorrow.”

At this, she can’t keep up the intimidating façade anymore and bursts out laughing. I would probably join in if not for the fact that what she just said to me has sent a chill down my spine. It completely slipped my mind that the festival was tomorrow. I got so caught up in everything that I had forgotten when it was actually taking place, despite having assisted with multiple facets of it.

Hanako and I helped decorate the stall for Lilly’s class, along with Kenji. Additionally, Emi and I have both been helping Rin so that she can complete her mural on time. On top of all that, I’ve been roped into doing all kinds of busywork surrounding the festival on the Student Council’s behalf.

Yet I’m too absentminded to remember when the date of the event is. I’m an idiot. Maybe I have undiagnosed brain damage on top of the bum heart.

Who am I supposed to attend it with? Do any of the girls expect me to go with them? Do all of the girls expect me to go with them? Does Kenji expect me to go with him? I’m going to throw up. I don’t want Emi to see. Throwing up in front of someone is very intimate, like losing your virginity or telling them that you love them. The relationship is never the same. I’m not ready for that kind of commitment.

As I’m contemplating whether it’s more polite to vomit on the track itself or the grass next to it, for the custodian’s sake, Emi interrupts my thoughts.

“Hisao, are you alright? You’re sweating bullets and we haven’t even started running yet,” she says as she takes a closer look at me, “Your face is all pale too. I might be strict about your training, but if you’re not feeling well maybe you should go see the nurse ahead of time,” Emi offers sympathetically.

She’s right. Allowing me to skip our run together is extremely uncharacteristic of her, but she seems to take my wellbeing very seriously, judging by the genuinely troubled expression on her face. I must look awful. I can feel my hair matted against my forehead, which is probably sufficient evidence to back up that claim.

“Th-Thanks, Emi. I ju— uh, I’m not doing so hot right now. I think I will go see the Nurse. Thank you for understanding. I’ll try to at least jog over to his office so that I can say I got some exercise in,” I answer apologetically.

Before she can even respond I’m already jogging away in the opposite direction. I don’t actually want the exercise; this is just an excuse to flee this horribly awkward encounter as fast my legs will let me.

I manage to get quite far before I hear Emi’s now distant voice shouting back at me—

“HISAO, YOU FORGOT YOUR WATER BOTTLE!”

“IT’S ALRIGHT! YOU CAN KEEP IT!”

“WELL, FEEL BETTER! OKAY?!”

“YOU TOO!” You too? What is wrong with me?

“MAYBE I’LL SEE YOU AT THE FESTIVAL TOMORROW?!”

My mouth seemingly can’t choose between ‘yeah,’ ‘nah,’ or a more casual, laid-back ‘eh’ in response. So instead, I end up screaming a strange combination of the three.

“NAHYEUGH!”

I turn the corner, leaving my brief spell of mental retardation behind me and the track out of sight. There’s nobody else around, so I take this opportunity to empty my stomach into a nearby garbage bin before slumping down against the wall adjacent to it. My heart is racing and stumbling all over itself. I instinctively close my eyes and grab at my chest with my right hand. I’ve learned that the best thing to do in these situations is to try and remain calm and focus on my breathing. Like being pregnant, but instead of trying to birth a life, I’m trying to stay alive.

After a moment or two, the sharp pangs of pain in my chest slowly start to subside and the prickly needlelike sensation in my left arm goes away.

Once my heart rate evens out and I calm down physically, my brain picks up the slack on causing me pain and my mind begins racing once more with concerns pertaining to the festival tomorrow. I should worry while I walk though. Places to go, people to see and all that. Using the wall for support, I pick myself up, dust myself off and reluctantly commence my march over to the Nurse’s office.


*******


As I’m walking over to meet with the Nurse, I realize that if he were to see me in this state, he might chastise me for not taking better care of myself.

Seeing as I’m early for my appointment anyway, I decide to dip back into the boys’ dormitory to regain my composure first. More students are awake and going about their business now. As I’m hurriedly walking through the halls on my way to the common room, I occasionally brush shoulders with some of the dozens of nameless faces travelling alongside me. I think at one point somebody had called my name out, but I don’t know if I imagined that or not.

It’s all too much.

I’m going to see all of these people countless times throughout the duration of my stay here, yet I’ll only end up speaking with a small selection of them. The rest will forever remain extras in the unfortunate story of my life. What if one of them is supposed to be something more to me? What if I’m associating with the wrong people? What if one of these spectres wandering around in my peripheral vision could be a kindred spirit to me and I don’t know it? How are you supposed to know who you’re meant to be friends with?

I finally make it to the common room and immediately start boiling some water so that I can prepare myself a cup of coffee. They only have the instant stuff here, but it’s better than nothing. It’ll at least taste better than the lingering taste of puke in my mouth from before. Slightly.

I’m a bit too eager and almost chug the entire thing in one go, burning my tongue and throat in the process. The pain is jarring enough to make me break out into a coughing fit, earning some concerned stares from several boys across the room.

I attempt to wave it off nonchalantly while I pour myself another cup. Two cups of coffee already, and I don’t intend for it to be my last today. Granted, it likely isn’t very wise to consume this much caffeine given my condition. Every drop that slides down my gullet is probably shaving days off of my lifespan. That being said, it’s helping me keep my nervousness in check, so it’s a compromise I’m willing to make at the moment. Still, I should try not to make a habit of it.

Feeling considerably more relaxed, I head back out and resume my trip to the Nurse’s office.

Five minutes pass before I find myself in front of his door. I take a second to clear my head before knocking.

“Come on in!” a muffled voice says from the other side.

I go inside the room and close the door behind me. The purple-haired man in front of me had been sitting at his desk with his legs crossed, but he spins around in his swivel chair to face me once he hears me enter.

I dislike doctors, but something about the Nurse is different. The goofy smile on his face is the polar opposite of the stern expressions I’ve come to associate with medical staff. He’s just an all-around amiable, sincere person, even though he can get irritating with the never-ending jokes at my expense. It’s his way of lightening the mood though, and I do appreciate the effort.
It’s a good skill to have when you’re dealing with the impaired and dying. Tough crowd, I imagine.

“Why hello, Hisao. How are we doing today?” he asks, grinning his usual grin.

“Ah, you know, surviving,” I respond, trying to reciprocate with a smile of my own.

“I should hope so. Anyway, you know the drill. Shirt off, if you would.”

I oblige and toss my shirt onto an empty chair to my right.

He eyes my scar momentarily. A jagged, dark crimson gash in the middle of my chest from when they had to open me up for my emergency surgery following my attack. I’ve been told that it will fade with time, but never entirely. A grim reminder of my feeble state. It still itches now and then.

He rubs the end of his stethoscope between his hands to warm it up and gets to work, holding it against my chest and my back, listening intently for any irregularities. Unluckily for me, I can see his trademark smile falter.

“Are you sure you’ve been doing alright, Hisao? Has Emi been pushing you too much? You need to be completely honest with me if you expect me to help,” he says scoldingly.

“It’s not anything like that, sir. I’ve just… been a bit stressed out is all.”

He wags his finger at me. “That simply won’t do. You need to be wary of your stress levels. It’s the biggest contributing factor to heart complications these days.”

He’s told me this before, and I found it just as frustrating then as I do now. Where does he get off ordering me to stop being stressed, as if I actively choose to be? If anything, it just makes me even more anxious because I start stressing out about stressing out. It’s a vicious circle that’s impossible to escape from, and he’s offered me no solution.

I think he senses my change in mood and his face softens once more.

“Look, I know this is all still new to you. I know how trying these kinds of circumstances can be. Just do your best, alright? It’s all any of us can do. Whenever things start getting to you, just focus on your breathing like we spoke about the other day.”

I nod solemnly. The breathing did help with my incident earlier at the track.

He sighs and reclines back into his chair, kicking his feet up on his desk. “You do look tired though. Have you eaten yet today? Breakfast is the most important meal, after all.”

“I wasn’t really hungry, but I had an apple before I left this morning.” I feel kind of bad for being such a downer, so I try to continue on with a joke of my own. I think he’d appreciate that. “I was told having an apple a day might keep you away from me, but here we are”

He does indeed visibly brighten at this. I’m glad. “Oh, it will take more than an apple to get rid of me. You’re going to want something more substantial, like a restraining order, or a bullet.” He chuckles lightly. “Seriously though, please keep your diet in mind. A handsome young man such as yourself needs all the energy he can get,” he says, winking at me.

“ ‘Handsome’? Isn’t that an inappropriate thing to say to a student?”

“Don’t get any funny ideas, Nakai. You’re not my type,” he pauses, “Besides, I could never steal you away from Mutou. I see the way he looks at you. It would be wrong to encroach on my colleague’s territory like that.”

Oh god, not this again. “Please don’t,” I plead in vain.

“I wish I could get a woman to look at me the way your science teacher looks at you, Hisao.”

“That’s quite enough, sir.”

“He talks about you, you know. In his free time. Off the clock. It makes me very uncomfortable, but it’s not my place to interfere with true love”

“What have I done to you to deserve this?”

“You should take things slower with him than you have with me though. I’ve only known you a few days and I already got your shirt off. Makes you seem easy, y’know?”

Cracking a joke at him was a mistake. Once he gets rolling he can’t stop himself. He’s relentless.

“This is all very unprofessional, sir.”

At this, his voice raises several octaves, into an almost girlish squeak, “But, sir, am I not your model student? Why could you possibly want to see little old me after class?” Now his voice shifts into a disturbingly accurate impression of Mutou, “Your grades are stellar, Nakai, but you’ve been a very, very bad boy and you need to be puni—”

I really don’t want to hear the rest of this bit so I plug my ears with my index fingers and turn to leave the room.

As I take one finger out to twist the doorknob and make my escape I hear a crisp crunching sound and turn around to investigate.

The nurse has produced an apple from somewhere and has taken a large bite out of it. His other hand is outstretched toward me, holding a piece of paper. I take it from him and inspect it. After quickly scanning the rectangular slip I’m shocked to see that it’s a note excusing me from my classes for the day. I look back up at him, one eyebrow raised.

“You need the rest, kiddo. Doctor’s orders. Besides, it’s the least I can do to pay you back for entertaining me,” he states as he winks once more.

A wave of gratitude washes over me and I breathe a sigh of relief. I thank him profusely and we say our goodbyes. This is exactly what I needed. If I can just get a few hours of privacy to think things over I may be able to salvage my plans for the festival tomorrow.

However, the exchange I had to endure to get the time off was still mortifying. I won’t be able to look Mutou in the eyes for a while.

If the Nurse is impervious to apples maybe I should try oranges next.

First period has already started, so I don’t need to worry about playing bumper cripples on the way back to my room like I normally do. I swear, you’d figure that in a school for the disabled, people would be more mindful of personal space. I already have several bruises on my shins from the occasional stray cane or wheelchair. Not to mention that one time Emi nearly made my chest explode after accidentally tackling me to the ground like an adorable little offensive lineman.

Much to my surprise, even though class is already in session, I can hear footsteps echoing from around the corner. A teacher maybe? As I make the turn to proceed on my way to the dormitories I’m shocked by whom the sounds belonged to, and she seems appears equally surprised to see me.

Violet eyes, matching her dark purple hair which helps to hide the severe burn scars on the right side of her face. She’s wearing an expression one might expect from a person being sentenced to death by firing squad. It’s hard to mistake Hanako Ikezawa for anybody else.

Now that I think of it, it isn’t really that strange to find her out here, seeing as she is almost always late to class. I’ve never caught her in the act before though. I’m not sure how to proceed; I don’t want to scare her off.

She’s a very sweet girl from what I can tell, but one small misstep with her and she runs away so fast she may as well be able to teleport. If someone were to spook her while she was on the track, she might even be able to beat Emi’s personal records.

I’ll just keep this simple for her sake, a fast greeting and then I’ll be on my way.

“Good morning Hanako,” I say, giving her a slight wave.

“G-Good m-morning, Hisao,” she responds through her usual stammer, though her face suggests that she’s unsure why I’m not in class.

The fact that she audibly responded at all was more than I had expected of her. Despite seeing her at lunch every day, we haven’t spoken much. On my first day here, I had decided to check out the school library, and wound up sitting next to her as I flipped through a small novel I had picked up. Even then, we nearly sat in total silence except for a few pleasantries.

I tried to spark up more of a casual chat and she ended up sprinting away from me in response. Needless to say, I learned my lesson and it seems to have paid off, seeing as she isn’t trying to run away from me right now.

Maybe if I continue to speak to her in brief sentences I can gradually ease her into more regular conversations. She seems to be most relaxed when we play the occasional game of chess during lunch, that would probably be the best time to try it out. That can wait until after the festival though. Hanako is the only one I’m pretty certain doesn’t want to hang out with me tomorrow. I doubt she’ll be at the festival at all, honestly.

One day I’d like to understand her. I don’t know the details, but I can easily assume Hanako’s past is far more traumatic than my own. Even so, in an odd way I feel like I can relate to her. Hanako might be the only one I know who is more troubled mentally than I am right now. It may be messed up to think so, but it’s nice to know that I’m not the only one struggling. Misery likes company I suppose.

I give her a short nod farewell as I pass by her. I can feel my room beckoning me. The Nurse and Hanako were nice distractions, but I need to figure out what I’m going to do tomorrow.

If I don’t come up with a plan I may go from having too many friends, to having no friends at all.


*******


My eyes rapidly move along the page. I’m reading the words, but I’m not really taking them in. I can’t even really recall what happened the past few chapters. Books had helped me a lot during my stay at the hospital following my surgery. They kept me distracted and broke up the monotony of lying in my bed all day.

It’s not helping now though, and that really sucks. You know you’re in a bad way when your most treasured hobby does nothing to comfort you. I may as well give up on reading for tonight. I’m not giving this novel the attention it deserves.

I shut the book closed in frustration before hopping off of my bed and walking over to my desk. After storing the book away in the drawer, my eyes are drawn to the only other contents inside. A picture frame, containing a photo of myself and my parents at the beach from two years ago. I had stuffed the picture in my desk because seeing my bare chest with no unsightly scar on it was pretty depressing.

The memories of that day help lift my spirits a bit, and I feel myself smiling. It wasn’t often that we all got to do something together. Both of my parents are very career oriented and never spent too much time at home. I was mostly left to fend for myself growing up, but it wasn’t for lack of trying on my parents’ parts. They tried their hardest to be there for me whenever they could; they just couldn’t most of the time is all. I don’t hold it against them, even though it did get lonely sometimes.

My father gave me this photo the day I was dropped off at Yamaku. He got a little glassy-eyed when he handed it over, he always was a softy. The good cop to my mom’s bad cop.

I take the photo out of its frame and flip it around in order to look at the backside. My father had written down both his and my mother’s cell phone numbers, in addition to an email address that they both share. I think they made it just so we could exchange messages while I’m away from home. A kind gesture, probably his idea.

For a moment I seriously consider taking them up on the offer and calling one of them. If there’s anyone that could help me figure out a solution to my predicament it would be them.

I can’t do that to them though. I can tell that they’re already worried about me as is. I’m on thin ice from a physical standpoint, if they heard what an emotional wreck I am as well they would freak out.

For some reason, as dozens of thoughts bounce around my brain, the image my mind stops on is Lilly Satou.

Lilly is a fascinating person. From what I can tell, she’s Hanako’s only friend here. Doesn’t take a genius to see why, if I was a burn victim I would naturally gravitate to a blind person as well. That’s the thing though, I feel like even if Lilly could see, she and Hanako might still be pals. Lilly has an unfaltering air of kindness about her, I doubt Hanako’s scars would do much to deter her.

I don’t know why I’m thinking about her now though. She can’t exactly help me when she’s a part of the issue.

Not that I would be opposed to spending the day of the festival with her, she’s very pretty after all. Really tall for a woman, with fair skin and wavy blonde hair. Her clouded blue eyes serve as the only physical indicator of her condition. Her half-Scottish genes do a lot to set her apart from the crowd around here, as does her more modest fashion sense. She pulls her hair back into a ponytail with a large black ribbon, and her skirts go far below her knees. I’ve also noticed that she wears a cross around her neck.

Lilly had been raised Christian, I guess. Imagining her praying at her bedside is pretty amusing. For the most part, people in Japan aren’t religious, myself included, but there are shrines here and there. Most people visit them due to tradition though, not so much for spiritual reasons. I guess Christians don’t need shrines to pray though; they can just do that whenever they need to.

Hmm. Maybe I…

…No, I’m not doing that. That’s ridiculous. I’m a man of science and I know better than to waste my time with such things.

Then again, scientific method states that I need to test my theory before I can prove it. There’s no harm in giving it one try, I have nothing to lose. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Besides, nobody will ever know I tried this nonsense.

I don’t know how you’re supposed to do it though; I’ve only ever seen this done in foreign movies. I start by kneeling down and resting my elbows on my bed, clasping my hands in front of me and closing my eyes shut.

I feel ridiculous. Whatever, I’ve already gone this far so I may as well follow through.

“Uh, hello?” Good start, I would hope if there is a god that he wouldn’t mind my social awkwardness.

“I need some help. Is it a problem that I’m Japanese? Is this just a white person thing? I’m friends with Lilly, if you take referrals. I just… I have nobody to speak with, so I was hoping that you could be of some assistance. Plus, you kind of owe me one for the whole heart thing.

“Obviously you won’t answer back. That’s your gimmick or whatever, I know. I just need some form of guidance. Send a wise man my way or something. That’s part of the story, right? I just need someone to bounce some ideas off of, spitball some ways to dig myself out of this hole that I’m in. You know, like an impartial third party. Someone with experience in these matters. Someone smart. Someone who knows how to deal with peopl—”

My last-ditch plea to thin air is cut short as a loud banging sound emanates from the door of my room. You’ve got to be kidding me, this can’t be right. I nervously inch my way over, knees threatening to buckle beneath me. My hand grips the doorknob tightly, knuckles turning white from the pressure. I’m scared to open the door. I never thought my beliefs on religion would be disproven so blatantly. I begin to question everything I had come to accept about the univer—

BANG.

In the middle of my epiphany, the door flies open and cracks against my skull. My vision goes blurry and I reel back in pain. I take a second to check whether or not my heart is fine, and it is, but damn does my forehead hurt. I shake my head from side to side in an attempt to focus my eyes so that I can get a good look at my saviour.

That’s when a strong waft of garlic and aged milk hits my nostrils.

“Hey man, I heard you talking to someone in here and wanted to make sure you weren’t being robbed,” greets my bespectacled assailant.

Okay, now I definitely don’t believe in God. No higher power would do this to me. Welcome back atheism, I missed you.

“You really need to learn to lock your door, man. If you don’t, any nutjob could just barge in willy-nilly,” he warns me, tossing his red-and-yellow striped scarf back over his shoulder.

“Yeah, I can see that!” I exclaim, unable to hide the anger in my voice.

He looks a bit hurt with the tone I’ve taken with him. “I just wanted to make sure you were alright, bro. No need to get your ovaries in a twist. Besides, home security is no joke. What if it wasn’t me? What if I was some broad here to murder you or steal your socks or something?”

“Well, if they try my door and see that it’s open, they’ll figure that there isn’t anything worthwhile inside. Meanwhile, they try out your door afterwards and notice that there’s like twelve locks on it. They’ll be far more interested in your room and you’ll be the one having your socks murdered or whatever.” I’ve found that if I play along and double down on Kenji’s insane ramblings when responding to him, it makes him shut up most of the time. Fight fire with fire.

Even through his thick, round glasses I can see his eyes shoot wide open and his jaw drops.

“Oh shit. You’re right, I don’t know what I was thinking.” He sighs, resting his forehead against his palm. “You’re a lifesaver, Hisao. As soon as I get back to my room I’m going to remove ALL of the locks. I’m also going to sleep with the door wide open from now on. I’ll be the least suspect person here. Totally incognito.”

That’s a horrible idea, but I don’t dare continue this conversation. I walk back a few steps and sit on the edge of my bed.

That’s when an idea hits me. I’ll never get any worthwhile advice out of Kenji if I ask him which girl I should make plans with at the festival, but maybe if I were to speak his language…

“Hey, Kenji, can I ask you something?”

“Of course, dude. Anytime.”

“Hypothetically, let’s say this war that you’re worried about finally breaks out. You’re in a sniper’s nest, rifle in hand when you spot six enemies on the horizon. They’re all equally dangerous to you. In that situation how do you pick which one to shoot?” I inquire, hoping he doesn’t catch onto the real meaning of this scenario.

“Huh? Isn’t it obvious?”

I wish it was, Kenji. “No, that’s why I’m asking.”

“You just shoot the first one you see,” he declares, pointing his index finger at me, miming his finger pulling a trigger.

I lean back on my elbows to consider his response. It actually does make a lot of sense. I haven’t confirmed with any of the girls that I’d be going with them to the festival tomorrow. I could just go alone and walk around until I run into one of them; the first one that I spot would be the one I approach. I would be completely blameless. All of the burden of choosing is taken off my shoulders and left up to fate instead. It’s perfect.

Kenji would be a genius if he wasn’t so stupid.

In an effort to show my gratitude I give him a firm clap on the shoulder and smile at him. “Thank you, Kenji. You’ve actually been a great help.”

“Oh. Uh, I don’t really understand, but I’m glad, man,” he responds, returning the gesture with an even harder clap on my shoulder.

He really isn’t so bad. I hate to admit it, but I kind of like the guy, despite his eccentricities. Maybe I should ask him if he wants to do something after the festival tomorrow. What’s the worst that could happen?

“Say, after all the excitement dies down tomorrow, do you want to hang out for a little while and wind down?”

“Excitement? What excitement?” he asks, cocking an eyebrow at me.

“The festival? Don’t you need to be there for your class’s booth—”

“THE FESTIVAL IS TOMORROW?! WHY DIDN’T YOU WARN ME SOONER?! I NEED TO GO PREP MY FORTIFICATIONS!”

“Wha—”

“NO TIME! I’LL SEE YOU MONDAY!”

Before I can protest, he spins on his heels and dives forward, somersaulting to my open doorway. He sticks his head around the edge and looks down both ends of the hall before turning his head and shooting one last quick nod to me. I give him a confused, halfhearted wave in response and he dashes out of sight.

I can hear his clumsy footsteps thundering down the hall, but they’re punctuated by an abrupt, echoing thud and a high-pitched, ear-piercing shriek of pain. He must have run into a first-year girl or something. I don’t know what a girl would be doing in the boys’ dorm this late at night though. I’d better go check to see if she’s okay.

I exit my room and I’m embarrassed to discover that the wailing was, in fact, coming from Kenji himself, who had tripped and fallen down in his rush to escape to his room. If he screamed any higher, only dogs would be able to hear him. I try not to judge though; very few people have flattering screams of agony.

I make my way over to pick him up and help him back to his room, it’s the least I could do in return for his shockingly sage advice. For the first time since coming to Yamaku I have something to look forward to.

Maybe tomorrow will actually end up being fun.
__________
Next part
Last edited by CozyRavioli on Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:50 pm, edited 10 times in total.
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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Zerebos » Wed Jun 07, 2017 1:26 am

This feels like a breath of fresh air here in the Renai. I really like the tone that's set in the writing. The Hisao in the beginning reminds me of the Hisao in my (unreleased) fic, it's kinda cool.
CozyRavioli wrote:"WELL, FEEL BETTER. OKAY?"

"YOU TOO." You too? What is wrong with me?

"MAYBE I'LL SEE YOU AT THE FESTIVAL TOMORROW?"

My mouth seemingly can't choose between 'yeah', 'nah', or a more casual, laid back 'ehh' in response and I end up screaming a strange combination of the three that comes out as-

"NAHYEUGH."
It's really nice to see that Hisao can be as awkward as normal people and not the master of romance.

The entire scene with the Nurse was absolutely hysterical honestly. I spit up my soda through my nose and everything. Absolutely worth it. Fantastic.

I liked the tidbit about Hisao's dad being teary-eyed during dropping him off, I don't really recall the dropoff really being addressed like that in any other fic.

And of course Kenji was Kenji. :lol:

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Weskerrun » Wed Jun 07, 2017 4:43 am

Ahaha. Very good start, capture the essence of all the characters very well, I thought. Nice to see someone else who enjoys Akira as much as I.
Pretty funny, Nurse and Emi got a laugh out of me as well as Kenji. Keep it up, can't wait until the next update.

Small nitpick, though, I feel like the "Hello Hisao" should be "Hello, Hisao." Or at least "Hello Hisao." Very good otherwise!

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Mr.Radish » Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:30 am

This was great! Keep up the good work dude, I'm looking forwards to this being added to!

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Mirage_GSM » Wed Jun 07, 2017 1:57 pm

Okay, first of all don't worry too much about grammar, language, word diversity etc. What I've seen so far is quite good.

A few issues about the story so far:
He has been at Yamaku for all of five days, but in the beginning of the story he makes it sound like it is a tedious routine already. Not sure if that part is really necessary at all, but it's just a minor point.
Then Hisao's reaction to being told about the festival... That's kind of extreme, isn't it? He said himself, that he helped with various apects of it over the week, and even if he forgot about the actual date it's not like the question who to go with is such a complete surprise that it would induce nausea and a minor heart attack...

And I'm actually inclined to ignore how out of character Hisao's conversation with god was, because it was just so hilarious. :lol:
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Thu Jun 08, 2017 1:55 am

Zerebos wrote: It's really nice to see that Hisao can be as awkward as normal people and not the master of romance.
That's largely what inspired this story. KS had the 5 legit routes with the main girls, but also had the Kenji end if you were really antisocial. It made me wonder what the story would be like if Hisao tried to be friendly with ALL of the girls. Obviously that wouldn't be viable in the VN itself, but I thought it might be a cool premise in a more traditional story. But that naturally lends itself to becoming a shit show where all the ladies love Hisao and it leads to a harem ending or something. That sounded pretty boring and self indulgent to me, so instead I wanted to make Hisao a complete chump who has low self-esteem and just really wants to make friends after his life gets turned upside down.

Then a certain blonde woman gets involved...

Thank you for all the other kind words. I hope you eventually end up releasing your story as well. Your profile picture is a blue dog preparing sushi and that really resonates with me.
Weskerrun wrote:Small nitpick, though, I feel like the "Hello Hisao" should be "Hello, Hisao." Or at least "Hello Hisao." Very good otherwise!
Yeah, there's going to be plenty of errors like that coming up because I have a very small ape brain. Thanks for catching that though. I'll fix it whenever I get around to editing the first entry.
Mr.Radish wrote:This was great! Keep up the good work dude, I'm looking forwards to this being added to!
Thank you Mr Radish. Send Mrs Radish my regards.
Mirage_GSM wrote:A few issues about the story so far:
He has been at Yamaku for all of five days, but in the beginning of the story he makes it sound like it is a tedious routine already. Not sure if that part is really necessary at all, but it's just a minor point.
Then Hisao's reaction to being told about the festival... That's kind of extreme, isn't it? He said himself, that he helped with various apects of it over the week, and even if he forgot about the actual date it's not like the question who to go with is such a complete surprise that it would induce nausea and a minor heart attack...
You're definitely right about that first point. I was just really trying to establish that he was very much displeased with how things were going. I'll figure out a better way to word it whenever I end up editing the first entry.
As for his extreme reaction, I meant for it to be a 'straw that broke the camel's back' situation. Like, he had been so focused on getting settled in and helping everyone with the festival that he hadn't put any thought into what he'd be doing when the date rolled around. The sudden confrontation is what did him in. The throwing up/flutter was the result of his sudden mental breakdown coupled with the physical exertion of jogging away.

Thank you for the thoughts, I'll make sure to try and address them when I make my edits.
Last edited by CozyRavioli on Sun Jun 25, 2017 3:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Jun 08, 2017 9:35 am

Oh, and one more thing I forgot to mention: Don't sell yourself short before you've even begun publishing your story.
The existing Akira route is very long and has been mostly favourably received, but it is by no means perfect. It relied on comical amounts of chance to get the ball rolling in the first place and Hisao was being a meddlesome dick for a lot of it without ever being called out on it.
So don't just say you'll "never reach that level of quality". Just give it your best.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Sat Jun 17, 2017 3:27 am

Part 2: ‘Of Mice and Miyagi’

___________________________________________

What do you even wear to things like this?

Rummaging through my drawers, I pick out random articles of clothing to hold them up and look them over. A lot of students like to complain about dress codes and uniforms, but frankly, I appreciate them. You have five pairs of the exact same outfit, one for each day of the school week. Then you wash all of it on the weekend and the cycle continues. No real thought or fashion sense required, totally efficient. I can’t imagine having to figure out something different to wear each day of my life. That’s one part of adulthood I’m not looking forward to. Hopefully I wind up at a job that requires me to wear suits or something.

I stop to consider a pair of maroon corduroy trousers. Not to wear them, mind you. God no. More to question what the hell my mom was thinking when she got me these. I would throw them in the trash, but I’m afraid that it would hurt her feelings if she ever found out. Still, I make a point to place them at the very bottom of my drawer when I put them back. They might be haunted by the ghost of a previous owner, who was likely a child molester given his choice of attire, so we’ll all be safer if I tuck them away forever.

Wow, this is tough. You wear something too formal and you’re a weirdo, you wear something too casual and you’re a slob. I’m starting to see why girls complain about this kind of thing. At least I don’t have to worry about makeup or menstruating.

After twenty minutes of indecision, I finally settle on a pair of khakis and a white t-shirt. Can’t go wrong with that. I’d rather play things safe than make a fool of myself. I’ve been doing enough of that lately as is. I can’t help wincing at the memory of my encounter with Emi on the track yesterday morning.

Now that I think about it, if I intend to stay out late tonight it’ll probably get pretty chilly come nightfall. I haven’t finished unpacking my things yet and I think all of my jackets and coats were lumped together in the box containing my winter apparel, so I decide to just throw on my green school blazer instead.

Still feeling a bit hesitant about venturing out, I go back to the bathroom one last time to make sure that I’m presentable. Looking at myself in the mirror above the sink, I notice that I’m wearing the same expression that Hanako was during our impromptu meeting in the hallway yesterday. The kind of look that suggests I might piss myself if someone sneezes too loudly. Whatever, I look as good as I’m ever going to. I just need to bite the bullet and force myself to leave the safety of my room. On my way out of the bathroom I glance one last time at the mirror.

I point my finger at the boy staring back at me. He mimics my movements, how childish of him. “Please don’t embarrass us today, Hisao.”

I really need to stop tempting fate like that, one of these days my friend in the mirror might actually respond and then I’ll have to shell out the money needed to see a psychiatrist. Maybe I can go with Hanako and we can get a group discount.

I look around my room once more. I need to get going. My fingers tap against my bedroom door for around thirty seconds, unwilling to proceed. My mind knows this, but my legs refuse to listen. Between this and my heart attack, my body has gotten awfully rebellious lately.

Thinking back to yesterday night helps me calm down. There’s no need to worry anymore, I have a strategy now. The first of my new friends that I run in to will be the unlucky lady who wins an evening with yours truly. If the first person I happen upon already has plans, I’ll keep walking around until I find someone else. If all of them turn out to be busy then I’ll just crawl back here with my tail between my legs and wash my hands of this whole thing.

Without giving myself time to reconsider, I violently pull the door open and force myself out into the hallway. You need to be quick about these things, like ripping off a band-aid. The first step is always the hardest.

Seeing as Kenji has decided to barricade himself in his ‘bunker’ for the day, I don’t feel the need to tiptoe by his room like I usually do. As I move past his door I can hear a very loud, rhythmic, metallic pounding and the occasional drill whirring coming from inside. I don’t even want to know. If he turns out to be building a death ray, hopefully he remembers that I was nice to him.

The closer I get to the exit of the dormitory, the louder the sounds from outside become. As I understand it, these events aren’t exclusively for the students at the academy. Family members and people from the nearby town are also encouraged to partake in the festivities.

I knew it was a long shot, but I tried calling my folks before I went to bed last night to see if they would want to come down and visit for a few hours. Went straight to voicemail. It’s mostly my fault; I know how busy they are. If I wanted them to come I should have thought to call sooner. Still, I miss them.

My thoughts about my home life are soon forcefully pushed aside as I open the door to the school grounds and all of my senses get assaulted at once. Between the roar of the crowd, the music playing in the background, the sudden exposure to the sun and all of the colourful decorations, it feels as if I’ve gone blind and deaf. At least all of the different food smells nice.

My squinted eyes gradually open back up as I become acclimated to my new environment. Once I get my first proper look around, it’s hard not to be impressed. Yamaku really goes all out with this stuff. I feel a small sense of pride knowing that I helped put this whole thing together. I didn’t do that much in the grand scheme of things, but I did work tirelessly for five days despite having only just transferred here. That has to count for something.

The optimist in me sees this festival as a celebration of what can be accomplished when young adults learn to rise above their physical shortcomings. The pessimist in me sees it as the academy overcompensating and trying to show the able-bodied world at large that crippled kids aren’t totally worthless. The realist in me should probably accept that both of those statements are true.

As I descend down the stairs into the main area where everything is set up, I notice that Rin isn’t stationed at her mural like I had assumed she would be. It really did turn out nicely. I don’t understand a lick of it, but maybe it’s not my place to.

All of the credit obviously goes to her for having the ability to bring it to life, but it still feels kind of cool knowing that I helped mix most of the paint for it. I’ll be sure to tell her that she did a great job the next time I see her. Provided I can keep her attention for more than one minute of course.

I lift my heels off the ground, standing up on the balls of my feet, craning my head up to look over the sea of heads, keeping an eye out for any of my targets. Nobody yet.

However, there are a few classmates that I recognize. They’re all sitting together under the shade of a nearby tree. I’m not good with names, but I’m still familiar with them. In the semicircle of people I can see ‘Brown Emi,’ ‘Sleepyhead,’ ‘Stump Girl,’ ‘Pretentious Beret Guy,’ and ‘Round Fellow.’ It looks like they’re having a blast. They make hanging out look so effortless; I wish I could be like that. The mental hoops I had to jump through just to make myself come here in the first place are embarrassing.

There’s no use in beating myself up over that now, I’m here and that’s what matters. I had thought that I would have run into somebody by now though, I’m starting to get antsy. I feel sort of claustrophobic, alone in the crowd like this. While I’m trying to track down my prey, I may as well keep myself occupied. It is a party after all, it’s not as if there’s a lack of activities to participate in, even if I’m by myself.

I try my hand at a few of the games that have been set up. Unfortunately, I walk away emptyhanded, except for a few participation prizes such as rubber wristbands or cheap phone charms. I would have liked to have won something nice, like a t-shirt, a poster, or a stuffed animal, but my hand-eye coordination is terrible.

Even before my arrhythmia reared its ugly head, I was never really an athletic person. I played a game of soccer here and there with my old friends, but I never cared that much about the game itself. Emi had jokingly asked me to win her something nice today, but she’d probably have to be the one to win me something, honestly.

I’m not too surprised that I haven’t spotted Emi yet. She’s the easiest one to miss given the fact that I’m certain she’s on the brink of being legally considered a dwarf. She gets upset when I tease her around about her height, but I don’t understand that. If you dislike being short why not just buy prosthetics that are a few inches longer?

Having accepted my defeat with the games, I make my way over to the section where you can buy food and drinks.

The first booth that I pass by is the one that’s been set up by Lilly’s class, but she’s not there presently. Much like Rin, Lilly is not where I had expected her to be. I’m starting to think that these people are actively trying to avoid me.

Whatever, there’s no line and I’m pretty thirsty, so I move to the counter and buy myself a canned coffee from the girl who is manning the register.

I crack open the tab on the can and take a large swig, mentally apologizing to my heart in the process. It’s for the greater good, little guy, I swear. Take one for the team.

I find it impressive that the blind class operates their booth so efficiently. Is that condescending of me? Is it wrong to think that somebody is performing well ‘for a blind person’? If I were in their shoes, I certainly wouldn’t wan—

My musings are cut off by several gasps and one loud shriek of terror. The sudden noise startles me so much that I almost drop my drink, but I manage to retain my grip on the can and avoid spilling anything. Like many others nearby, I begin frantically looking around to try and find the source of all the commotion.

It doesn’t take long to pinpoint the disturbance, as a large crowd of people, consisting of both students and adults, has formed a tight circle not far away from me. Nobody is screaming anymore, but there is a lot of nervous chattering going on as people awkwardly look around for help. I’m no Sherlock Holmes, but it’s safe to assume that one of the students has succumbed to whatever condition brought them to this school. I’m tempted to get a closer look myself, but I don’t want to get in anybody’s way.

As I lean against a nearby light post, I listen intently to the goings-on, taking the occasional sip of coffee. I feel bad for whoever is in trouble. That could easily be any one of us, especially people like me where our issue is internal.

Man, that really could be me. Is this how Iwanako felt? No, she probably felt even worse because we were all alone on that fateful day last winter.

Good thing I’ve been keeping up with Emi’s training, even if I hate running. Maybe if I keep at it I can avoid ending up like the person on the ground right now. At least, I assume that they’re on the ground; I still can’t see them through all of the onlookers huddling around them.

It only takes around two minutes before I see a pair of nurses from the medical wing of the school rushing in with emergency kits and a foldable wheelchair. There’s one woman with her hair up in a tight bun and a bearded, bald man with half-moon glasses. Both are clad in the typical long white coats that I always see the school nurses wearing.

Two minutes is a pretty decent response time, but they’re probably used to this kind of thing by now. The nurse that I’m familiar with isn’t among them; maybe his job is just to perform checkups.

They both worm their way through the crowd, politely but firmly moving several people out of their way. A minute passes before the bald one puts his hand up to get everybody’s attention.

“There is no need to worry, everyone. This young man is going to be perfectly fine in a few hours. He has hypoglycemia and simply passed out due to low blood sugar. His friend here was kind enough to catch him on the way down, so he doesn’t have a scratch on him. I have administered a glucagon shot and he’ll be right as rain very soon. So please, don’t let this put a damper on your time here today,” he proclaims, not screaming, but speaking loudly enough to make sure everyone in the immediate vicinity can hear him.

He probably doesn’t like speaking so candidly about the boy’s condition, but there were bound to be dozens of questions from concerned parents if he didn’t explain the situation, so I think he made the right call.

“Now, please clear the way so that we can bring him back inside to rest.”

People promptly do as the nurse requested and allow the three of them to pass. The male nurse carefully props the boy up in the wheelchair and they slowly wheel him back toward the entrance of the school. I let out a sigh of relief, I’m no saint, but I still hate seeing people hurt. The kid looked about two years younger than me, I’m glad he’s going to be alright. I always thought diabetes was somewhat tame as far as medical conditions go, but evidently that isn’t the case.

The crowd slowly starts to disperse as the excitement dies down, but as the mess of people starts to clear out, I see something that makes my breath catch in my throat and my heart skip a beat. Kenji had not prepared me for this.

Among the few stragglers still standing where the boy had collapsed, I see them. Rin and Emi. They’re both facing away from me, but it’s still obviously them, they’re easily identifiable due to their missing limbs. I hadn’t anticipated some of them being in the same spot. Which one did I see first though? Oh god, I can’t remember. Maybe they’re hanging out together today? Maybe I can ask to join them? No, that’s weird. They’ll think I’m creepy for asking. The three of us have spent time together working on the mural, but that was work, this is different. I can’t butt in on something I wasn’t invited to.

Okay, calm down. This is fine. They haven’t seen me yet, so I’ll just back away slowly and reassess my options.

I quickly pivot a hundred and eighty degrees to face the opposite direction and head back the way I came, but after a few steps I’m forced to stop dead in my tracks. This can’t be happening.

Lilly is behind the counter of her stall now, facing directly toward me. Not that it means much, given her visual impairment, but the fact that her eyes are seemingly focused on me almost makes me doubt her blindness for a moment.

If she had been alone this would have been ideal, but she isn’t alone. Standing between myself and Lilly, I spot a distinctive mass of pink hair, which has been painstakingly shaped into drill-like curls on either side of her head. Her and her better half are rarely parted, and today is no exception. To the right of Misha, my class representative and head of the Student Council, Shizune, is furiously signing at Lilly while her counterpart interprets her movements.

I established last night that God isn’t real, but I think Satan might be. That’s the only way to explain this. I can’t even begin to fathom the odds of this occurring. Why can’t anything ever go my way?

My heart is pounding; I look down and swear I can see the left side of my shirt moving slightly with the palpitations. Sweat has started to run down my forehead and it’s stinging my eyes. I try to focus on my breathing, but I can only manage to produce shaking gasps of air at uneven intervals.

What do I do now? No matter who I approach, all of the others will notice. What if they take offence that I didn’t choose to hang out with them? Shizune and Lilly hate each other, I can tell Lilly doesn’t like speaking with Rin, Emi will probably take it personally if I choose anybody but her, Misha and Shizune are a package deal, Rin doesn’t know what planet she’s on. There are too many factors; it’s like a riddle with no answer. Who am I supposed to shoot now, Kenji? I’ve been flanked by the enemy. This isn’t how it was supposed to happen. This isn’t fair.

Turning back behind me, I risk another peek at Emi and Rin. They’re still chatting, but they’re standing in front of one another now, and I can see the profiles of their faces. If I keep staring, either one of them could easily see me in their peripheral vision. Cupping one hand to the side of my face to prevent them from recognizing me, I turn around once more to look back at the Student Council and Lilly as they argue.

It looks as if Shizune has given up on scolding Lilly and is now silently pouting with her arms crossed as Misha cheerily speaks with Lilly herself.

“No.”

Who said that? Did I say that? If it was me, I agree with myself. I need to get out of here, right now. Screw the festival. Abort mission.

As I try to sneakily commence my tactical retreat back to the dormitories, Shizune turns and looks right at me, frowning slightly.

Not good. Bad. Help. I look back-and-forth between both groups of girls a few more times, trying to will myself out of existence.

Upon seeing my reaction, her frown deepens. She uses her index finger to readjust her glasses before she starts throwing dozens of hand gestures my way. I have no idea what she’s saying. Misha has only taught me the essentials, like ‘hello,’ or ‘washroom,’ or ‘please stop hitting me, Shizune.’

Realizing this, she looks back to Misha and starts pulling on the sleeve of her shirt. Misha doesn’t notice though. She seems focused on her conversation with Lilly and she can get pretty spacey at times.

Now’s my chance.

During the confusion I break away into a full-body sprint. I was surrounded, so I couldn’t go forwards or backwards, and if I went to the right and back to my room, Shizune and Misha would probably meet me there shortly afterwards to confront me.

The only safe way to go now is toward the school gates. It’s probably for the best. It’s still early in the afternoon and I need to find somewhere to hide for the rest of the day while the apocalypse blows over. Maybe Kenji had the right idea building a fort to stay in.

My chest is starting to tighten up, but the finish line is in sight, so I persevere. I double my efforts and increase my pace, speedily passing through the iron gate of the school and onto the sidewalk in front of it. Skidding to a stop, I bend over and rest my hands on my knees while I catch my breath. No heart flutter this time, but I know if I had pushed myself a bit further than I had, I might be in a bad way right now. Five minutes of quivering and heavy breathing pass before I finally feel stable and stand back up.

Just as I straighten my posture I see a large square shape approaching from down the road. After wiping the sweat from my eyes I can now see that it’s a bus. Specifically, the bus that travels to the small town close by. I had walked there once with Shizune and Misha to get something to eat.

Perhaps that could serve as my hideaway for the day. Everyone is so busy around here that nobody from school will be in town.

Not a great plan, but it’s all I have. I wish I had brought a book with me; it would make camping out for the rest of the day less boring. Then again, it’s not like I had planned any of this.

What am I going to tell Shizune tomorrow? I could lie and say that I was having heart issues, but I’m not ready to let her know about my condition yet. She’ll think I’m even weaker than she probably already does.

Standing by the sign at the bus stop, I search my pockets for the necessary amount of change needed to pay the fare.

The bus soon screeches to a halt and the door slides open. I look back one last time at the school, seeing everyone laughing, smiling, and enjoying themselves. I can’t help but slump my shoulders and shake my head at the sight before boarding the bus and taking a seat near the front. As the bus takes off I look out the window and I’m met with a face I’ve grown to hate.

“Way to go, moron.”


*******
(Continued in next post)
Last edited by CozyRavioli on Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:51 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Sat Jun 17, 2017 3:28 am

(Continued from last post)
*******



That couldn’t have possibly gone any worse. I’m a walking, talking, worst-case scenario. I tend to blame all of my problems on bad luck, but after a while, if bad things consistently keep happening to you, you should probably come to terms with the fact that you’re the problem.

I’ve only been here once before, but the exterior of the Shanghai is unique enough that I spot it with ease.

Looking through the windows of the establishment, I confirm that there’s nobody who I recognize inside before entering. I need some time away from the world. Science hasn’t progressed to the point where I can be transported to my own private pocket dimension yet, so this café will need to do for now.

There are only two or three people inside. From what I’ve heard, and from what I saw last time, this place is usually dead, but today it’s especially quiet due to the festival. Good.

Pushing open the door causes a tiny bell to ring, so I do as I’m meant to do and stand near the entrance while I wait to be greeted by a waitress.

It’s a little ridiculous that you need to wait to be seated in a place that never has more than a handful of people inside, but there’s no sense in arguing about it. Besides, if Yuuko is the one working today and I disobey the proper procedures, she might have a stroke.

If people could figure out a way to convert anxiety into electricity then Yuuko, Hanako and I could probably power the entirety of Japan all by ourselves.

Sure enough, I hear a loud bang and Yuuko emerges from underneath a nearby table. She has a rag in her hand so I guess she must have been cleaning up a mess.

The first time I saw her here, I didn’t know how to react, and I’m still somewhat unsure. At the Shanghai, she acts as a server, yet at the school she’s the librarian, a member of the staff and someone who holds a degree of power over the students and acts as their superior. How am I meant to address her? Ms.? Yuuko? Ms. Yuuko?

She had dropped her glasses when she hit her head on the underside of the table, but picks them up and clumsily puts them back on as she hastily shuffles over to meet me.

“SORRYSORRYSORRYsorrysorrysorry! Hello and welcome to the Shanghai, I apologize for the wait,” she says as she bows excessively deeply toward me.

She bows so far down in fact, that her glasses fall off of her face a second time. I don’t know how she hasn’t broken them yet.

I crouch down to pick them up for her, but she was already on her way down to do the same thing and we knock our heads together, causing us both to fall backwards.

We both quickly bounce back to our feet and I can feel my face grow red. I’m hopeless. I’d better apologize and make sure that she’s not hurt.

“Sorry, Yuuk—”
“OH NO, SIR, I AM SO SORR—”

“No, I’m sorr—”
“NO, IT WAS MY FAUL—”

This is the worst; I’ll just let her go first.

She apparently has the same idea and looks downwards to her feet, not saying anything. Fine, I’ll go then.

“I didn’t mean to—”
“I just thought that—”

Alright, I’m putting an end to this.

“YUUKO! Calm down! I was just trying to help. I’m sorry for hitting you, it was an accident. Are you okay?” I raise my voice just enough to prevent her from interrupting me again.

“Oh, I’m fine, sir. Don’t worry about me. Happens all the ti—” She puts her glasses back on and pauses once she gets her first good look at me. “Hisao? Is that you? You look… are you feeling alright?” she asks me, clasping her hands together in front of her chest. She looks concerned.

Maybe for once I’ll just be honest. “No, not really. I’m not feeling alright. How about you? Are you feeling alright?”

“…No, not really.”

Both of us smile a little at this. I think she knows that I don’t want to talk about it, and I know that she doesn’t want to talk about it. Like I said the other day, misery likes company.

“So, may I take a seat somewhere?” I inquire, politely reminding her that we’re both still standing in the middle of the entrance.

“Ah, of course. Silly me. Please, come this way,” she says, gesturing for me to follow her, “You’ve decided to take a break from the festival then?”

“Something like that, yeah. Not really my style, I guess,” I respond. I’m not lying; I’m just purposely not mentioning the more upsetting parts. There’s a difference. At least, that’s what I’m going to tell myself.

“Hmm, that’s too bad. I wish that I could go,” she sighs, “I hope that the fireworks later on will be visible from here. I love fireworks.” she mutters the last part more quietly than the rest of her statement, with a wistful tone in her voice.

Yuuko brings me over to a booth at the far end of the restaurant, near the windows. Despite the fact that there are dozens of open tables, she has seated me directly across from someone else. I would have preferred something more private, but I don’t want to make her even more flustered than she already is by complaining. The events of this afternoon have made me lose my appetite, so I just order a cup of coffee.

Somebody else must have already ordered a cup recently, because Yuuko is back almost immediately, suggesting that a pot had already been brewed. She tells me that she’ll be at the counter, and to call her over if I’d like anything else. After I thank her, she takes her leave and I’m left alone with my thoughts once more.

My coffee is still too hot to drink, so I lean back and look around the interior. The Shanghai may be a little run-down, but it has its charm. Until recently, I had lived in the heart of the city my entire life, so I’m still not used to quaint little rustic places like this.

My eyes stop on the only real thing of interest in here, the person sitting at the table across from mine. Interesting may not be doing it justice though; I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone so immediately visually intriguing in my whole life.

My staring shouldn’t be an issue, as she seems far too busy to pay me any mind. There’s an open briefcase on the chair next to her, papers are strewn about all over the table and she’s typing away at lightning speed on what looks to be a cutting-edge laptop. Her blood-red eyes are darting back-and-forth along the screen so rapidly she almost looks possessed.

The features that I noticed first, however, were her pale, white skin and bright blonde, messy hair. Is she a foreigner? If so, what business could she possibly have here in the middle of nowhere?

I get the impression that she’s reasonably wealthy, because in addition to being able to afford that computer, she’s dressed in a trim-fitted pinstriped suit on top of a white button-up dress shirt and black tie. She even has cuff links and a tie pin and everything. The only thing remotely feminine about her getup is the pair of expensive looking red earrings which she has on.

It’s difficult to discern what her body might look like, I feel like the suit does a lot to conceal that. From what I can tell, she has a lithe, athletic frame. Her bust is modest, so much so that I can hardly see it. If I had only seen her from her shoulders down to her midsection I might have assumed that she was a young man, but her hips to waist ratio clearly disproves that. Plus, despite her otherwise androgynous appearance, she has a very pretty face. Her hair is medium length, barely reaching her shoulders. It’s rather disheveled, as if she had just gotten out of bed, but it looks so good she must have done it like that on purpose.

Normally I have more tact and can control myself. Nobody likes the guy with no manners who spends all of his time gawking and drooling over girls, but she really is striking. There are plenty of pretty girls at school, but none have matured to look like real women just yet.

It’s difficult to fantasize about her, because I can’t even imagine myself getting with someone like that. She wouldn’t give a dope like me the time of day.

Maybe it makes me juvenile, but I’m in a really sour mood, and looking at the attractive lady is making me feel a little better, so please leave me alone, inner voice of conscience. My master plan at the festival was a bust, so let me at least have this.

Unfortunately, after a couple moments I’m broken out of my reverie as she straightens up and closes her laptop shut. I manage to turn my head away before she has the chance to notice that I had been staring. At least, I hope I did.

Even though I’m looking away now, I’m still thinking about her. She’s a strange one. It’s not often that you see women dressed up in suits like that. If they do wear them, the jacket is usually paired with a skirt and blouse.

Maybe she’s involved in organized crime. She does have an intimidating aura about her. I wonder if she has a gun tucked away in that suit jacket. I hope I don’t find out firsthand.

I hear some shuffling so I look back over to her. All of her stuff is still scattered across the table, but she herself has disappeared. I hope her boss didn’t put a hit out on Yuuko or something, because I haven’t paid for my beverage yet.

A couple minutes go by and the mysterious stranger has yet to return. With her gone I’m completely alone now, and without any blonde women to occupy my thoughts, that ugly, disgusting question crosses my mind once again.

What am I doing wrong?

This should have been a fun day. My first fun day in months, since before my heart attack. I can’t even remember the last time things felt normal for me. I’ve really messed things up; I was so prepared to deal with the girls one-on-one, that when I saw all of them around me I felt suffocated. It still feels like I’m being suffocated.

I feel my eyes start to well up, so I instinctively bury my face in my hands. If anybody sees me they’ll just assume that I’m tired and not that I’m a crybaby. I may be at rock-bottom, but I’ve still retained enough dignity to not weep openly in public like a loser.

I hear the sound of somebody plopping down into a chair nearby, so I know that the woman is back now. Running my hands up and down my face, I wipe away the one or two tears that had started to form in the corners of my eyes, pretending that I’m just rubbing my face to wake myself up.

When I look back up, I see that what I had suspected is true. The blonde woman is back at work, looking back-and-forth between her cell phone and various sheets of paper.

Staring at her some more would do me no good at this point, I have bigger concerns.

How am I possibly going to explain my actions to Shizune tomorrow? I can’t avoid her; she’s in all of my classes.

That’s just the beginning too. Nothing has changed. Starting tomorrow, I go right back to being everybody’s whipping boy for the rest of the year. Maybe even beyond that. This could be setting a dangerous precedent for the rest of my life. A short, sad life of servitude where every waking minute is spent trying to appease everyone because I’m too much of a nobody to make friends the normal way.

I need coffee.

Reaching out with a trembling hand, I grab the handle of my mug. As I bring it up off the table my hand is shaking so much that the mug rattles loudly against the saucer underneath it and I spill several drops onto the table and my hand. I think that should burn a lot, but I can’t really feel it right now.

After taking a few sips, I had expected to feel better, but I don’t. First reading does nothing to help me, now coffee has also betrayed me. I have nothing left in this world to comfort me.

I put the traitorous mug of liquid back down and rest my head on the table, gently closing my eyes.

I think I give up. This is an important moment for me. Years from now, I’ll be able to look back to this one specific instance and say that this is when I had officially given u—

“Yo.”

Huh?

Unwilling to raise my head, I open my right eye and turn my gaze upwards. I’m surprised to find that the stranger is standing over me. One hand lazily shoved into her pocket and the other one extended out toward me.

Does she… want a handshake? No bow? That’s awfully bold. What does she want from me?

Her hand shows no sign of withdrawing, so I sit up straight, grasp it and give it one firm shake. Seeing as she was so informal with her greeting I’ll respond in kind.

“Nakai. Hisao, if you want.”

“Oh, first name right off the bat, huh? I like that. In that case, you can call me Akira.”

She forgot to give me her family name, that’s kind of rude.

Whoa. I couldn’t see it from where she was sitting before, but she has cuts and scrapes all over her hands. Not something you’d expect from someone working an office job. Maybe she really is a criminal after all. I’m about to ask her about her hands, but she beats me to the punch.

“You bite your nails, huh?” she says while casually turning my hand over to get a better look at my fingers.

“I mean… I didn’t used to. It’s more of a recently developed habit,” I respond, still unsure of what she wants. What do my nails have to do with anything? Maybe she’s trying to sell me drugs. Small talk is how the dealers butter up impressionable youths such as myself, my mom told me that once. I won’t give her the chance to take advantage of me. “I’m sorry; can I help you with something?”

“Funny, I was about to ask you the same thing,” she says as she disengages from our handshake, before gesturing to my school blazer, “I just recognize the uniform and, you know, what it means. You looked like you were on the verge of passing out, so I wanted to come over and check to see if I had to call an ambulance or not.”

“Oh. No, I’m fine. Thank you.”

“You don’t look fine, kid. We’re the only ones here, so if you end up keeling over I’m the one that’ll be blamed for not helping.”

Geez, how selfless. “Well, don’t worry about it. I don’t plan on dying today.”

“Staying alive is a pretty good short-term goal to have,” she says as she leans against the edge of my table, “So, if you’re not about to die, what else could possibly have you so bent out of shape? You do know that you’re still in high school, right? What, did someone steal your lunch money or something?”

“Just, I don’t know, problems? I have a lot on my plate right now.” I told her that I’m okay, so why is she still here?

“Why not head back to your school and blow off some steam at the festival that’s going on?” she says, shrugging at me.

“No. Absolutely not. I need to stay away from the school until the festival is over,” I respond with a little more urgency than I had intended.

“Okay, okay. Shit, calm down,” she murmurs, throwing her hands up in a relenting gesture.

I sigh slightly, ashamed of my little outburst. It’s clear now that ‘Akira’ is pitying the crippled kid. Her heart is in the right place, so I’ll humour her.

“Seeing as you know about Yamaku and the festival, I take it you live around here?” I ask, trying to steer the conversation away from me and my issues.

“Nah, I live a little ways away. My sister attends school at Yamaku, so I wanted to drop by today and surprise her. When I finally managed to track her down, I saw that she was swamped with her festival responsibilities, so I just left. She doesn’t even know that I was there. Me and her actually hung out here together yesterday anyway, so it’s not like I’m being neglectful. Besides, festivals aren’t really my thing most of the time. They’re just so… family friendly,” she explains as she flicks a single speck of dust off her shoulder.

Her sister goes to school with me, huh? I knew she reminded me of somebody. I don’t know how I didn’t realize it sooner, I’m so dumb sometimes.

Naomi. The epileptic girl that sits near Hanako in the back of my class. She and Akira both have medium length, straight blonde hair, they both have really outgoing personalities, they even have similar facial structure. I would tell Akira that I’m in the same class as her sibling, but I don’t know Naomi well enough for that conversation to not be awkward, so I keep it to myself for the time being.

“Your sister didn’t see you before you left?”

At this she bursts out laughing for some reason.

“Yeah, I’m pretty sure she didn’t see me, Hisao,” she says through a snicker. I don’t get what’s so funny. Maybe I have something stuck in my teeth.

Just as I’m about to ask her why she was laughing, Akira turns away from me and starts walking back to her own table. Rude way to start a conversation, rude way to end a conversation. At least she’s consistent.

Turns out I was too quick to judge. She doesn’t sit down but instead picks up her own cup of coffee before returning to my table, and slides into the seat opposite my own. Once she’s settled in she reaches into her jacket pocket for something.

The light from outside glints off of the metal object as she pulls it out. It’s a steel flask. She quickly unscrews it and pours some of the contents into her half empty cup of coffee. The smell of it stings my nostrils, even from across the table. Alcohol?

“Isn’t it a bit early for that?”

“With my sleep schedule, concepts like ‘early’ and ‘late’ stop existing,” she says as she tucks the flask back into her pocket.

“Uh, how often do you drink?”

She looks a bit confused by the question, and raises one eyebrow before responding with a question of her own. “You mean, like, per day?”

How has her liver not shrivelled up yet? That can’t be healthy.

She waves her hand twice in front of her, indicating that I should just forget about it. “Anyway, what’s got you so down, champ?”

“No offence, but why do you care? We don’t even know each other.”

“Sure we do. I’m Akira and you’re Hisao.”

“Okay, fine. But it’s hardly your job to listen to me complain.”

“You don’t know the half of it. Telling people how to fix their problems is what I do for a living,” she retorts through a crooked smirk.

“Oh, you’re a therapist then?” I guess that would explain the formal clothes.

“A therapist? HA! No. My job might make me a scumbag, but even I’m not that much of a con artist. Shrinks are just glorified wishing wells. People toss coins at them and beg for better lives. They’re modern day snake oil salesmen, selling the promise of a fix-all solution to whatever may ail you. Bullshit,” she asserts, her voice growing louder the further she goes along.

Okay, wow, pretty strong opinion on therapists. “Well, what do you do then?”

“Lawyer. Salt of the earth, I know. Still, somebody has to do it. The silver lining in all of this, however, is that I am more than qualified to help out a high schooler fix his widdle pwoblems.” As she says this she reaches out to mockingly pinch my cheek, but I move my head backwards out of her reach.

“I wholeheartedly doubt that.” I’m pretty sure that they don’t have courses on how to make friends in law school, so I don’t see how she could help me.

“Well, give me the chance to prove you wrong then. It’s not like I’m charging you, so you know this isn’t a scam. By the time you leave today I’ll have you back on the right track,” she says confidently, smacking her hand forcefully against the table.

“Then why even bother doing this?”

“Look, I had planned to spend the day with my sister, but those plans fell through. So I drive over here to have a coffee and catch up on some work, but then I finish all of it. My boyfriend said he isn’t coming home until midnight, so I have nothing to do for the rest of the day. By the sounds of it, neither do you. So, you get to benefit of my infinite wisdom and I get to atone for some of my more heinous lawyerly sins and do my good deed for the day,” she says as she leans back in her seat and crosses her legs.

When she puts it like that, it’s hard to refuse. Still, hearing that she has a boyfriend stings a little. I would have never had the balls to ask her out anyway, but it was still nice to humour the idea.

I shouldn’t think like that, every interaction between a male and female doesn’t need to be romantic. This complete stranger is going out of her way to help me out; the least I can do is show some appreciation for her efforts.

“Well, if you say so. I’m… sorry if I’ve been acting difficult, it’s just been a really hard day for m—”

“Oh, you little bitch.”

Well, that hardly seems like an appropriate response to someone voicing their gratitude to you.

She chuckles a bit when she sees me frown at this, “I wasn’t talking to you, doofus.”

I can see now that she’s looking over my shoulder and out the window behind me. She reaches inside her jacket. I was kidding around before, but is she actually pulling out a gun? Maybe the Yakuza are outside.

Thankfully, it’s just a keychain. She presses a red button in the middle of it and a horn sounds from outside.

Turning around to look outside the window, I see the headlights flicker on a car parked across the street. An expensive car by the look of it. I don’t know the make of it because cars were never my thing. My family has never been too well-off from a financial standpoint, so I didn’t see the point in taking an interest in things I could never afford.

The horn scares off a bird that had been perched on top of the hood. I guess she just wanted it off of her car.

“That’s a really nice car… I think. Hobby of yours?”

“Nah, I just wanted to invest in a nice model so that it would last me a while. I want to avoid public transport as much as possible, can’t stand it. Hate planes, hate trains, hate buses. I especially hate buses,” she sneers.

“I mean, very few people enjoy taking the bus, but I’ve never heard of someone hating them before. What’s so bad about buses?”

“Each bus is like its own little, miserable ecosystem. You have people refusing to wear deodorant. Babies shrieking. There’s always a pack of apes hollering at the back of the bus, it’s horrible. But the worst part is those seats they have reserved specifically for disabled people.”

Did I mishear her? She has a sister who’s prone to seizures, she’s helping out a random crippled kid she’s never met before out of the goodness of her heart, yet she doesn’t like priority seating?

“I would have thought that you’d appreciate that kind of thing, seeing as your sister has a disability herself.”

“That’s the thing. If you were looking at my sister, you might not even know of her condition. It’s not like she’s missing limbs, you know? So who’s to say who’s entitled to sit there? That’s what I hate about it. It forces you to judge people. That spot is meant to be for old folks and the physically impaired. So, what’s the cutoff age where you’re officially old enough to be offered that seat? When your hair starts to go grey? When you get those weird veins in your hands? What if I think somebody looks old, I offer them the seat and they get offended at the implication? The seat is meant to be accommodating, but it’s mostly condescending,” she says all of this through a flurry of impassioned hand gestures to help convey her point.

She stuffs both of her hands in her pockets and points her chin at me. “For example, look at you. You’re at Yamaku for a reason, but you look perfectly healthy to me. If you got on the bus and I was in that chair, I wouldn’t even consider offering you that seat. Besides, if you see somebody walk in with a cane or something, everyone sitting down should be willing to offer them their seat. The fact that we need a spot specifically designated to be given up says a lot about our society. So yeah, if every other seat is taken, and that’s the only one available, I’d rather fucking stand up for the whole ride.”

I don’t know if she just has a way with words, or if I’m buying into this because she’s charismatic, but that little speech about a seat on a bus was way more thought-provoking than it had any right to be.

The whole thing caught me off-guard, and I must have been pretty deep in thought, because she interpreted my silence as a window of opportunity to bring the conversation back to my personal life.

“So… would I need to give you that seat, Hisao? What is it that brought you to Yamaku?”

“I’m not really comfortable talking about it yet. It’s all still new to me,” I respond, rubbing the back of my neck and looking away from her.

“Any problem that you might have becomes exponentially worse when you don’t talk about it. It means you’re scared of it. The more you talk about it, the less scared you are, and the less of a problem it is.”

A smirk tugs at my lips after that last remark. “You sure you’re not a therapist?”

“Pretty sure, yeah. If I was, I would have said some pseudo-intellectual nonsense about your feelings stemming from wanting to have sex with your mother or something.” She laughs pretty hard at this, and it sounds especially loud because of how empty the Shanghai currently is.

I notice that she has much more of an honest laugh than any other girl I’ve ever met. Most tend to adopt polite, stifled giggles, but not Akira. Her eyes crinkle at the sides and a dimple appears on her right cheek. I’ve always found being able to laugh an attractive quality.

I really need to stop thinking like that, she has a boyfriend. Even though I’m an eighteen-year-old hormonal mess, I still greatly value the idea of monogamy and faithfulness. I just need to force myself to consider her a completely nonsexual entity. Like an onion. Or Kenji.

I can’t help but appreciate her voice though. I’m not even really sure how to describe it. It’s a bit deeper than most women, but not excessively so. There’s a slight, pleasant raspiness to it. It has a warm, inviting quality, like listening to music on old record players.

No, really. That’s enough. Even if she was single she could still do better than me, so knock it off.

Maybe it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to talk about my heart with her. She did offer. Besides, I don’t want to bring it up with my classmates because I have to face them every day. I’ll likely never see Akira again anyway, so why not vent to her?

“I have… arrhythmia. The word itself is pretty self-explanatory. My heart beats erratically. Too much physical exertion or any hard hits to the chest and I’m in trouble. I didn’t even know I had it until a few months ago, when I had a heart attack out of nowhere. The doctors recommended that I finish my schooling at Yamaku, so I’ve pretty much had my whole life turned upside down.”

“Damn. Sorry, kid. That explains why you’re not faring so well, your heart lost its rhythm and your life followed suit,” she says with a sympathetic tone. She puts her elbow up on the table and rests her head against her knuckles before continuing, “Must be tough, moving so far away on your own. I suppose you miss your family, huh?”

“Yeah, I do. I mean, it’s not really that different from how it used to be. My parents were rarely home growing up. It’s just that it feels a lot worse now because of the distance. Even if they weren’t home all the time, I knew they were at least nearby. Now it feels like they’re on the other side of the planet,” I answer drearily.

All she responds with is a soft, thoughtful “Hmm.”

Maybe family is a sore subject for her. I can’t imagine why though, seeing as she clearly has a good relationship with her sister. An almost melancholic expression flickers on her face before she snaps out of it and follows up with yet another question.

“I don’t get it. Why avoid the festival? If you’re not feeling great, wouldn’t a day off cheer you up?”

“It’s a long story.”

“Like I said, bozo, I have nothing better to do.” As she says this she attempts to wave Yuuko over, clearly wanting a refill of her coffee. I guess she really is serious about settling in for the rest of the evening.

“Well, alright. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

Once I get going it’s difficult to stop. My mouth is like an open faucet pouring out a stream of frustrations. She does a lot to make it less awkward though, offering the occasional quip or piece of advice in response to my various troubles. Around halfway through the conversation it stops being an unpleasant recollection of the past and I’m surprised to find that I’m actually having fun. So much so that I don’t even notice when it begins to turn dark outside.

The only hitch in the discussion comes once I finally mention the situation with all my new friends. She scoffs at the idea.

“You mean to tell me that you’re freaking out because you have too many new friends? Give me a break. What’s wrong with that?”

“It’s like I told you, it’s too much responsibility. I want people to like me, but it’s a huge amount of work.”

“Sounds to me like you don’t have real friends then. Feeling obligated to do what everyone else wants you to do doesn’t make you a good friend, it makes you something else entirely.”

“What’s that?”

“An employee.” She pauses to let that sink in. “If you really want to be friends with these people, you need to be honest with them and say that you’re being overwhelmed. If they don’t understand that then they’re not worth hanging out with anyway.”

“It’s not that easy.”

“Try me,” she says, cracking her knuckles.

“Huh?”

“Try me. C’mon. Rapid-fire. Tell me the supposed problems with each of your friends and I’ll tell you why you’re being ridiculous.”

Fine, if she wants to be like that then I’ll be happy to prove her wrong. “My running partner takes my exercise very seriously. She’ll be extremely upset with me if I stop”

“Switch to something more low-impact that you actually enjoy. Let her know that your decision has nothing to do with her and that you still want to be pals. Next.” She snaps her fingers once she’s done speaking, eager to continue.

That… might work, I hadn’t considered finding an alternative to running, maybe I could ask the Nurse about it. Akira may have Emi figured out, but there’s no way she can help me with Shizune and Misha.

“The Student Council won’t take ‘no’ for an answer. I’ve let them know that I don’t want to join, but they keep bugging me anyway. And Shizune, the Council President, has a bad temper. She’s sure to throw a fit if I disobey her wishes”

“Have you definitively told them ‘no,’ or have you said ambiguous, indirect stuff like ‘I’ll think about it’ to avoid confrontation? Be honest.”

“Well… it’s just—”

“Yeah, that’s what I thought. You need to let them know once and for all that you’re not interested. Besides, I’m… familiar with your Student Council. Shizune is my cousin. Trust me when I tell you, she might be upset initially, but after a few days she’ll come to admire your decisiveness. Next,” she says smugly as she taps her index finger against her temple.

First she’s Naomi’s sister, now she’s Shizune’s cousin. How far does the rabbit hole go? Is Mutou going to turn out to be her father next?

I hate to admit it, but she is brutally dismantling my entire argument. Maybe I have been acting ridiculous; maybe this is what I’ve been doing wrong. I’m not going down without a fight though.

“But… Rin, the painter—”

“She’s done with her mural, right? So you and her are good now. Next.” I think she knows how well she’s destroying my counterpoints right now, as a devilish, crooked grin has found its way onto her face. She must be horrifying in a courtroom.

“The two girls that I have lunch with ar—”

She doesn’t even let me finish before responding, “From what I can tell, those two might be the only real friends you’ve made the past week. Surely there’s no problems there?”

“It’s just that one of them is extremely nervous whenever I’m around. I don’t know how to act around her, it makes me feel uneasy.”

“Ha, I know the type. Listen, this friend of yours can’t possibly be as bad as this other girl I know. She’s one of my sister’s pals and she’s a complete emotional wreck most of the time.”

One of Naomi’s friends is an ‘emotional wreck’? I’ve only ever seen her hanging out with Natsume and she seems normal enough. Weird.

She takes a sip of her coffee before continuing her thought, “This chick can barely speak. As such, everyone feels the need to walk on eggshells around her, to try and accommodate her. Do you want to know what you really need to do with people like that?”

“What?” If Akira can actually help me figure out how Hanako works, she would deserve a Nobel Peace Prize.

“Just talk to them like they’re regular people, because they are. Look for ways to have fun with them and they eventually come out of their shell,” she informs me with a knowing smile.

I don’t know about that, the one time I tried to speak with Hanako like a regular person she ran away from me like I was contagious. “It’s a nice idea in theory, but I doubt that would really work in practice.”

“It worked on you,” she says, shooting me a sidelong glance while bringing the mug to her lips again.

“…Whoa.” I’m only realizing now how much I’ve opened up to her in the past few hours. Did she just brainwash me?

“Honestly, Hisao, I hate to say it, but none of these girls have done anything wrong, it’s you. How are people supposed to know that you don’t like the way you’re being treated if you never voice your opinion? You’re letting people walk all over you; you need to be more confident.”

Her words make me a little angry, but I do a good job of hiding it. What she just said reminds me a lot of what the Nurse told me yesterday morning, when he warned me to try and be less stressed out. I can’t choose to be less stressed and I can’t force myself to be more confident, when are these people going to realize that?

“It isn’t that simple,” I mutter, looking down at the table.

“Never said that it would be, but it’s what you need to do. Nobody ever starts off confident; it’s something you work at. All you have to do is pretend that you’re the shit, then after a while you’ll start to believe it yourself and then you will have actually become the shit.”

“Wha— Why would I ever want to be shit? What an awful thing to say to someone,” I blurt out, grimacing in disgust.

“Jesus Christ.” She pinches the bridge of her nose between her fingers and shuts her eyes. “You’re not going to BE shit; you’re going to be THE shit. THE. There’s a difference. It means you’re cool, y’know?”

Okay… I think I get it now.

“Look, I would love to be a ‘shitty’ person like you Akira, but being cool doesn’t come naturally to people like me, alright?”

“Not ‘shitty,’ ‘the shi—’ …Just forget it, alright? Maybe English idioms don’t translate well to Japanese.”

Our heated debate about fecal matter gets interrupted by several loud pops and flashes of light coming from outside. I guess the big finale of the night has begun.

I hear another noise and turn around to find Yuuko quickly shuffling to a window across the room, to look up at the fireworks. For the first time since meeting her, she almost looks at peace. I’m glad that she got to see them; I get the impression that she isn’t often afforded even the simplest of pleasures such as this. Working two jobs and attending university, what a nightmare. Makes my problems seem small by comparison, maybe I have been foolish.

When I turn back around I notice that Akira is also looking up at the show in the sky, with a content look on her face. I always thought that lawyers were all business, the type of people who could never enjoy something as frivolous as a fireworks display. Then again, most lawyers probably wouldn’t go out of their way to help out a total stranger without charging them, so maybe Akira is an outlier.

I turn to face the window, but I stealthily keep my eyes on Akira. The colours dancing across her smiling face are more fun to look at than the fireworks themselves. Her boyfriend is a lucky guy.

There’s one last volley of rockets for the big climax as the show reaches its conclusion. I can hear the faint cheering from the crowd echoing from all the way over at Yamaku. I can’t help feeling a small pang of regret in my stomach. Talking with Akira really cleared some stuff up, things would have been fine if I had stayed at school and I likely would have had a great time. I should be over there cheering with everyone else. Then again, if I hadn’t come here today, I never would have received these valuable life lessons in the first place.

Just as I’m about to resume our conversation, Akira’s left breast starts vibrating. For one millisecond I fear that I might have missed a very crucial part of sex education, but quickly come to the conclusion that it must be her cellphone, which turns out to be the case. Thank god, if women learned how to vibrate on command, they would never have to leave the house.

She quickly types out a message on the keypad and slides out of her chair, heading back to her own table to pack away her things. As she puts her computer and all of her assorted documents back into her briefcase, she begins speaking to me over her shoulder.

“Alright, your assignment for now is to fix things up with at least two of your girlies. No excuses,” she warns me.

“My assignment?” What is she talking about?

“Yep, you give me the results the day after tomorrow. I’ll be right here at the same booth. My work schedule has… loosened up a bit as of late, so I can get the occasional day off. I have stuff to do tomorrow, but I’ll be here Tuesday, and so will you. Again, no excuses,” she says, pointing toward me almost threateningly.

She proceeds to down the rest of her coffee in one gulp. She had her cup topped off five times while we were sitting here, she’s even worse than me. Before I can argue against her demands, she picks back up where she left off.

“It’s one thing to talk about doing something, and another thing entirely to follow through. So I’m going to need to check up on you to see if it went well.”

I’ve had enough of this; my curiosity needs to be sated.

“Alright, I was willing to accept that maybe you were just a kind person who wanted to hang out for the day and give me a pep talk, but now you’re going so far as to arrange a follow-up. I hope you don’t take this personally, but I’m having a hard time believing your reasons for helping me are entirely altruistic. I’m a complete stranger to you, why are you going through so much trouble to help me?” I ask, staring at her with a bewildered expression on my face.

“What? Can’t a gal just want to help out a cat who’s down on his luck?” she pouts, looking to her right.

She’s trying to dodge the question, but I won’t let her, and I hope my expression adequately conveys that. I need to know why she’s sticking her neck out for me. When she sees that I won’t budge on the matter she lets out a barely audible sigh and her eyes glaze over as she seems to get lost deep in thought.

“You remind me of someone that I used to know,” she replies earnestly.

I would press her further, but the solemn look on her face suggests that now might not be the time to pry. It’s vague, but it’s something. I can’t help wondering who she’s referring to, maybe an old friend of hers?

She picks up her briefcase and turns to look at me one last time, her crimson eyes locking with my own. Normally, I have trouble with eye contact, but it’s as if I can’t look away this time. She was being sarcastic before when she was boasting about her infinite wisdom, but I’m honestly starting to believe it. I can almost see the vast wealth of knowledge and experience swimming around in her irises. It seems like at any given moment she could explain all of life’s mysteries to m—

“See ya’ Tuesday, dork.”

Not quite as profound and life changing as I had hoped for, but it’s a start.

Before I can say anything in return she begins to make her way to the exit, and without even turning to face me she casually throws up her right hand to wave goodbye. Soon enough she’s out the door and I’m watching her speed off in her fancy car. What in the world just happened? Is she even human?

I shouldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth; she has really tipped the scales back in my favour. After having learned so much from Akira’s counsel today, I retroactively feel like an idiot for thinking Kenji’s tip yesterday was the most brilliant thing I’d ever heard.

I’ve never met anybody who seemed so in control before. Just being in the presence of her laid back confidence was exhilarating; she’s like the protagonist of one of those western spy movies from a few decades ago. If she’s really serious about helping me get back on my feet, maybe I can end up like her someday. Man, that’d be something else.

I should get going, I lost track of time with Akira and it’s starting to get really dark out. I need to get back before curfew; I don’t want to get in trouble before I even finish my first week here.

As I look down to pick up my coffee and finish it off, I’m surprised by the reflection I see in the black liquid below me. The boy that I’ve gotten used to seeing isn’t there this time.

This new guy is smiling.
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Last edited by CozyRavioli on Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:53 pm, edited 5 times in total.
I like to think my cats would wait a few days to eat me if I died in my apartment.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
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The best god dang editor in the business, I tell you h'what:
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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Sat Jun 17, 2017 3:29 am

Hello again, cripple crusaders.

Sorry for the hot, throbbing triple-post. I didn't want to address this in the previous posts because this is more of a meta thing and not directly related to the plot.
One of the things that left a big impression on me in KS was the music. In a VN without voice acting, each girl's theme song did a lot to differentiate them and give them more personality.
Whenever I'm reading Lilly dialogue on here I can hear 'Concord' playing in my head, whenever I read about Rin getting up to some goofy stuff I hear 'Parity', and I think that's a pretty cool aspect of KS' presentation.

I have no musical ability, so I couldn't make a theme song for Akira myself, but luckily I happened upon an instrumental track that fits her personality perfectly in my opinion.
Anyway, if you're like me and like to have a song to associate with the girl you're reading about, this is what I had in mind for Akira in my story.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejGatJ94SDE
I like to think my cats would wait a few days to eat me if I died in my apartment.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
____________
The best god dang editor in the business, I tell you h'what:
Sloth4 (Story editer for Akira-te Kid)

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by azumeow » Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:30 am

Awww sheeeeit, another Akira route.

And this one's actually good, even if Hisao seems even more awkward than he normally does. I enjoy the stream of consciousness you throw in sometimes, as well. Not so much that it looks like a child wrote it (my biggest issue with Catcher in the Rye), but enough that you can tell that Hisao has a lot going through his head
"I don’t want to be here anymore, I know there’s nothing left worth staying for.
Your paradise is something I’ve endured
See I don’t think I can fight this anymore, I’m listening with one foot out the door
And something has to die to be reborn-I don’t want to be here anymore"

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sat Jun 17, 2017 2:49 pm

This current chapter reaffirms my first impression that you don't have to belittle yourself in comparison to the other Akira route.
I think you nailed Akira's character exactly, and both your dialogue and narration are already more entertaining to read than most other stuff here.

One major problem I see with this route - your Hisao is truly pathetic. It's hard to imagine how Akira could ever consider him boyfriend material. That's also a problem the other Akira route tried to tackle - and in my opinion didn't quite succeed...
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by CozyRavioli » Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:55 am

azumeow wrote:Awww sheeeeit, another Akira route.
There's never enough Akira.
azumeow wrote:I enjoy the stream of consciousness you throw in sometimes, as well. Not so much that it looks like a child wrote it (my biggest issue with Catcher in the Rye), but enough that you can tell that Hisao has a lot going through his head
Thank you, I was feeling unsure on how people would feel about that. I'm worried that if I write too much inner monologue for him it might get dull to read. Striking a good balance between narration and dialogue is something I'm struggling with at the moment.
Mirage_GSM wrote:One major problem I see with this route - your Hisao is truly pathetic. It's hard to imagine how Akira could ever consider him boyfriend material. That's also a problem the other Akira route tried to tackle - and in my opinion didn't quite succeed...
Well, I don't want to say too much about my plans for the future, but Hisao being a total loser here is an essential part of the plot. I don't know if you're willing to give me the benefit of the doubt, but I have put a lot of thought into where I want to take the story, including Hisao's character development from beginning to end. I have everything planned out, so it'll all come down to whether or not I have the ability to actually write it in a satisfying and believable fashion. I'll try my best though.
Mirage_GSM wrote:I think you nailed Akira's character exactly, and both your dialogue and narration are already more entertaining to read than most other stuff here.
Thanks, man. I mentioned in the OP that one of the things I was most worried about was characterization, so I'm happy to hear you say that. Writing dialogue for Akira is really fun.
I like to think my cats would wait a few days to eat me if I died in my apartment.
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Smelly story for stupid people who like stupid things: The Akira-te Kid
____________
The best god dang editor in the business, I tell you h'what:
Sloth4 (Story editer for Akira-te Kid)

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Re: The Akira-te Kid - An Akira Satou Fan Route

Post by rimvydasm » Sun Jun 18, 2017 7:17 am

It's a great start! i really liked Akira's and the Nurse's charackters. I'm really interested in learning more about characters and how Hisao will change in the story. Also one more thing,since Akira already have a boyfriend, i'm interested about their relationship. Anyway like i said before it's a great start and i'm looking forward to the next update.
Lilly master race!

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