Part 43: 6/4-6/5
Music: So Boring
It takes an hour to do my hair due to the humidity, and it’s a bother deciding what to wear when it rains. But for you, June is a month with no holidays and no events. Now that I think about it, you’ll be switching to summer uniforms next week. I don’t want everyone forgetting, OK? Don’t charge out the door in your blazers. On that note, Mr. Hamiru. The original blazers were named that thanks to a certain quality they had. Any idea what it was?
Excellent! Our blazers are black, of course, but the original ones were a bright, vivid red. It was mostly used to refer to the jackets worn by a British boating club in the 1800s.
Maaku gains Knowledge +1.
Somewhere along the line, I suppose the style got lost with the name’s original meaning. After all, just look at us. Nowadays, blazers don’t have to have any color at all…
Not that that’s a bad thing. I think black is pretty stylish…
I’ve been thinking a lot since then though… Do you have time to talk?
>Hang out with her
Thanks. Does the diner work for you?
Music: Alright (Elp Version)
And you know what she did? Laughed! She couldn’t stop talking about how tough she thought Mika sounded.
I feel like the Shiho Ann talks about and the one we saw are very different people.
Honestly though… it was kinda refreshing. I’m not even mad anymore. I guess you really just need someone to laugh at you if you want to feel better.
I’ve seen the truth of that saying firsthand… But anyway, even though I’m trying to strengthen my heart… Shiho’s the real strong one here.
I went to one of her rehab sessions the other day… She said she wanted me to be there… So I agreed without thinking much of it, but it ended up being… pretty overwhelming.
It was a lot tougher than I’d ever imagined… It was horrible. She was dripping with sweat, teeth clenched… She was clearly in a lot of pain… Apparently… she can’t even move her feet. She said it feels like her legs are filled with sand… But she dragged them along, legs swollen with blood… I wanted to just make her stop… By the time it was all over, she was in tears. It was really tough on her… She said she wanted to give up… And that’s why she asked me to come… To keep her motivated. The whole time she was complaining about things in ways she normally never would… But even with that… she finished her session…
I didn’t have to go through that… …Is it because I’m weak?
You’re wrong. You know, even through all that pain, I thought Shiho was so cool… beautiful, even. Despite all her complaining… she still tried incredibly hard. Strength is more than just not getting fazed… It’s the power to fight through adversity. So I was thinking, and um… what can I do to help Shiho?
How can you help Shiho? Well, have you tried making the problem about yourself?
…Yeah, I’ll do just that. I’m gonna give it my all…! You know Maaku, being with you really helps me see things clearly. What I should do, the true meaning of strength… Well… thank you for that.
I sense a heightened motivation from Ann…
Ugh, my nose is all runny…
Wh-What are you looking at me like that for? Pretty girls get runny noses too, you know! Well, see you around.
Music: Beneath the Mask
I’m sure it’ll be fine. So far nobody’s come charging us with anything, yeah?
But wouldn’t he wait to press charges until AFTER the exhibition? What should we do if someone contacts us about it tomorrow…?
Try asking Yusuke. He’s still staying with Madarame, right?
Oh, that’s right… Where is Yusuke? I wonder if he’ll be OK with Madarame…
I believe he is preparing for a media announcement. I didn’t hear anything about pressing charges.
Guess we just gotta wait then.
Let us meet in Shibuya tomorrow.
OK! See you then!
The exhibition is finally ending tomorrow… I’m sure things will work out fine this time too.
The earth-shattering appearance of a new leader! Revive and fight, Phoenix Rangers! Next episode… “His Name Is Feather Red.”
I was about that age when Power Rangers was a thing so these fake sentai shows make me nostalgic.
Have you been studying? Don’t start slacking off just because you’re done with exams, OK? It’ll cost you 5,000 yen to request me, but this time I’ll be sure to do an extra good job!
Don’t make me change my mind.
I’ll be heading over right now then… It’d be helpful if you can clean up a bit before I get there so that it’s easier for meeee.
Wait, what? Fuck, I’m already kind of doing you a favor just by paying 50 bucks to hang out with you.
Music: What’s Going On?
If it’s for you, Master, I’ll happily be covered in dust! But then, doesn’t it pain your heart to see such a cute maid all dirty?
I so wish I could pick the second option just to keep with the running theme of Maaku’s exasperation with this whole mess but alas.
I’ll go ahead and get this over with then!
And now, cleaning is complete!
Music: My Homie
…… I’m not allowed to work overtime during weekdays, so I rush to my part-time job after class ends. On my off days, I have to prepare pop quizzes and homework assignments… And today, I had to clean bathtubs and walk dogs before coming here. There’s no time to rest… Oh, speaking of pets, this room smells like a cat… I feed a lot of strays around my house… …I was surprised that you requested me. I didn’t think you actually would.
Why, I never!
I know I’m in a maid outfit, but I’m still your teacher, so don’t get any funny ideas. Besides… I try not to get too involved with my students, so… yawn …I need a nap… Sorry, just give me five minutes… Maybe ten…
This is embarrassing for all of us, Maaku.
…Oh, hey, do you know of any part-time jobs that pay well? I assume you make a lot, since you can afford a maid service… Well, let me know if you do.
She’s sick so I need money to pay her medical expenses…
Yes, I made the transfer…
N-No… Yes, I understand. OK, goodbye…
Oh! W-Wrong number!
I’d get annoyed that she clearly thinks Maaku is an idiot, but she saw his exam scores so I can’t blame her.
Hey, sorry to ask you this out of the blue, but… Do you happen to have one hundred thousand yen I could borrow…?
Wait, n-never mind! Owing one of my students money would be the worst… Hey, you may have some money, but be mindful of how you spend it. You shouldn’t be wasting it on services like this.
Again, I’m doing you a favor here.
…I need the money, so I do appreciate you requesting me. However, you’re my student, so if we were to get involved further, things would get complicated… I did warn you! The rest is your responsibility! You’re a high schooler after all.
I can sense Kawakami’s trust in me…
sigh Three more to go… …Well, I’ll see you later, Master!
Is he crying…?
Plainly put… I, um… plagiarized work…
This is one of the best portraits in the game. It’s just so absurdly over-the-top.
…And that was from the urgent apology conference by Madarame that took place just a moment ago. After reporting to the association, Madarame has agreed to the police’s request to turn himself in.
Wasn’t he on TV the other day?
On top of charges of abuse to his pupils, Madarame is under suspicion of claiming their works as his own. Some doubt the validity that his maiden work “Sayuri” was stolen, believing it was used for fraud. This large-scale criminal act has caused a great shock to the art world, and…
That old man’s done for.
After the conference, Madarame was taken to a police hospital for interrogation due to his age. However, initial psych evaluations state that he is mentally sound and likely responsible for his actions.
They churn those psych evals out quick, eh?
There’s no need to be nice to an old geezer like that.
Why’d he spill the beans himself? Doesn’t that seem weird?
Also, a group calling themselves the Phantom Thieves posted a dubious note at Madarame’s exhibit. The police will investigate their relation to this case, but for now, did not identify them as suspects.
Phantom Thieves? Do these bandits have somethin’ to do with that old geezer’s apology?
Ohh, I’ve heard of them before. They supposedly steal evil hearts; it’s why the culprits apologize.
Wait, what? Steal hearts? That’s impossible though.
But I feel like I saw somethin’ about that online too. They sent out a calling card for real.
So it was like, “We’re going to take your heart?” That’s impressive if someone really did that.
Music: Break it Down
Man, this is startin’ to get interesting… If we do it right, we can change people’s hearts. With this power… we might be able to do more than just gettin’ back at society. It’ll be a big deal!
Let’s keep pushin’ on then! As for me, I hope we just keep gettin’ more and more famous!
Something like this happening twice is massive too. It’s too great a coincidence to occur normally.
If we continue doing this, we’ll definitely be able to give courage to everyone who needs it.
Two men walk up.
…We may want to quiet down a little.
Do you know them?
You moron! Those’re attendance officers!
Ah, yes! How can we help you?
That monotonous acting of hers never fails to send a chill down my spine.
What are you all doing here? Are you friends?
What’re you gonna do about it, cop?
Hm…? What did you say?
A-Ahaha! Th-That was a joke! He didn’t get much sleep last night.
Well, all right. Just make sure you disperse before it gets too late, OK? There have been some odd happenings lately, and the news about that artist has caused quite the stir.
We’ll be careful!
Hey, don’t go making stuff up on the spot like that, OK…!? I totally panicked ‘cause of you!
…From now on, we’ll need to be even more cautious than before. Look at us! Right after the second Thieves incident, both prior victims are meeting up.
Wait, you mean people might be listening to us…?
Eh, it’ll be fine. Look around. We’re the only people worryin’ about it.
I guess you’re right…
By the way, Yusuke… You able to get anything out of Madarame? Remember how he was talkin’ about that suspicious person in the black mask?
Well… I pressed him for answers, but he doesn’t even understand what happened to him to begin with.
It’s not like he actually saw his desires get stolen, after all.
It’s rumored that he may be sent to prison. In that case, gaining information will be difficult…
So, what’re you gonna do now?
I’ll be leaving that hourse. I can’t draw in such a place anymore.
Music: Break it Down (Elp Version)
Do you have somewhere to go?
The school dorms. I can stay there free of charge thanks to my fine-arts scholarship.
A scholarship!? Wait, you’re that good…?
Although, Takamaki-san’s house would do as well.
You know, you could ask her to model for you whenever you wanted!
Then again, now that Yusuke’ll be livin’ alone, it’ll be easier for us to meet up whenever we want.
For the time being, we should wait and see how this case plays out.
And it’ll prolly take some time findin’ a target as big as Madarame.
Anyway, we should just act like normal students while we look for our next target, OK?
We’ll be entrusting that to you again, Ryuji.
All right. Guess it’s just more prep ‘til then.
Makoto leaves. Maaku looks over his shoulder before leaving with the others.
Music: Interrogation Room
You were sent away twice, almost reported to the police… and yet you still wanted to save him? Moreover, you ended up in a museum instead of a castle this time… You’re still going to maintain this rubbish about changing someone’s heart by stealing their Treasure?
Very well. The truth behind this tale of yours will be clear once your conspirators are in custody. Now then, tell me about this new member who joined your group. There’s no point in being stubborn. It will only damage your position. The identity of Madarame’s pupil can be easily discovered with a little investigation.
Fuckin’ do it, I don’t care.
So you won’t sell out your accomplice? …Fine. There’s still much more that I want to hear. It was around this time that the Phantom Thieves began to truly gain popularity. Lies flooded the internet—things like “The Phantom Thieves saved me too” or “I got a calling card”… For heaven’s sake… those lies made the collection of intel take almost ten times longer. Now, your next target was this man…
He doesn’t compare to the previous two. Even the police had been struggling to apprehend him. So, exactly how did you take down such a well-guarded criminal? Tell me.
A full psychiatric evaluation will be performed to further investigate the crime’s details and motives.
I’ve found a number of points of commonality between the two. Both, for example, were sent a “calling card” before their unforeseen changes of heart.
…I see. But isn’t tying their cases to the series of psychotic breakdowns jumping to conclusions? Furthermore, the police will frown upon you stepping into this…
Now isn’t the time to be worrying about things like jurisdiction and honor…! We need to dig deeper and find a correlation among the incidents these past two, three years.
Very well. I leave it to you… However, you must not let this interfere with your regular duties.
Thank you, sir.
Oh shit, this guy’s a politician!?
I shall continue to put forth great effort so that every citizen can live with peace of mind.
Not only are there these Phantom Thieves to worry about, but if that is exposed…
There’s more going on that we don’t know about…