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The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff)

Discussion in 'Questing' started by ZeroXSEED, Jan 13, 2020.

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  1. Threadmarks: Prologue
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Your name is Hikigaya Hachiman, 16 years old. Fairly athletic, reasonably handsome, if a bit ragged from bad lifestyle. Your family was neither rich or poor, more like upper middle class.

    [​IMG]

    And you went to Japan's #1 Elite Shuchiin Academy High School through pure scholarship. It was a hard work, many blood and sweats were shed, nevertheless, here you are half a year later and this is the second semester of your unusually boring high school life.

    [​IMG]

    You have decided that the idyllic boring life need to stop. Your best friend Shirogane Miyuki have decided to go for Student Council Presidential Election, and ask if you want to join him in the council.

    You declined.

    Part of you wondered, if accepting the invitation was the right thing. Nevertheless, he respected your decision, and this path separation didn't make you any less friendly with each other. The path of near-brotherhood more or less tempered over the course of summer vacation, you're not too worried.

    Nevertheless, it was a road not taken, no use crying over spilled milk.

    With a bit of rebellious streak, superfluous fund you don't know what to do, you picked a drowned motorcycle from a semi-famous dealer in Tokyo. To be honest, it wasn't really worthy of bragging, it was purely lifestyle choice. Nevertheless, it might just affect how people view you if they saw you in it.

    [ ] Police Bike: Touring type for long distance ride, why is this being sold? (++Charisma, -Manliness, appeal to order)
    [ ] Sports Bike: Sleek and elegant, not as comfortable but it's certainly look cool and fast. (+Charisma)
    [ ] Standard Bike: It's average in all aspect but still imposing and tough, getting the job done. (+Manliness)

    [X] Cruiser Bike: Low ride, low growl, comfortable to ride, looks like gangster bike. (++Manliness, -Charisma, appeal to chaos)

    It was the first day of the semester and you ended up, somehow, tangled up with Yakuza group and it's Princess. Narrowly escaped with your life and dignity intact, you ended up knowing her more than before, originally as stranger even though the two of you were in the same class.

    You gave her a ride to school when traffic jam blocked her family car, so she managed to avoid tardiness on the first day in the semester. She owe you at least that much in the end.

    [​IMG]

    Her name was Ryuju Momo, the primary heir to Ryuju group, the biggest Yakuza group in Tokyo Metropolitan area. It could be said that they conquered half of Japanese's underworld, though most of their business appear legit.

    Eh.

    [ ] Draw a line (Hard mode, no VIP protection)
    You're still classmates but that's it, nothing more nothing less.
    [ ] Keep it safe (+ Manliness)
    Remains in contact, hang out from time to time as friend.

    [X] Fairly chummy (++ Manliness, appeal to chaos)
    Not quite best friend, nevertheless you're comfortable with each other and she taught you a trick or two.
    [ ] Absolutely no fucks given (+++ Manliness, appeal to chaos, negative modifier with other girls)
    More or less glued by the hip, rarely seen without each other. People mistook you for dating from time to time.

    Thinking that your chaotic school life more or less stabilized, managed to keep your grade high for one semester, and all that important things, you wonder if you should begin searching potential girlfriend?

    Heh.

    [​IMG]
    Asking to get heartbroken again perhaps?

    Who knows.

    Time to let it rip.

    But first's let's pick your choice of electives this semester. This will decide what elective class you attend outside the primary subjects.

    [X] Journalism
    [ ] Art (You picked this before)
    [ ] Music (Miyuki is here)
    [ ] Calligraphy (Momo is here)


    Author's Note
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  2. Threadmarks: Player Character
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    HIKIGAYA HACHIMAN


    • [​IMG]
      Date of Birth: August 8
      Height: 174 cm
      Title: Captain of the Survival Game Club
      Social Rank: 3-
      Academic Rank: 10
      Reputation: 250

      Charisma: 7 (Fairly handsome)
      Manliness: 9 (No nonsense and takes no shit)
      Alignment: +2 Chaos


    • Cooking Skill: 8, You can cook fairly exceptionally great home food
      Engineering: 4, You can tinker with simple electronics and machines
      Swimming: 8, You're almost competition level swimmer
      Running: 8, You're almost competition level runner
      Parkour: 5, you do much better than average person but nothing amazing

    • Heart Broken Veteran
      Already rejected 11 times, you hesitant to acknowledge your romantic feelings.

      Romantic Paranoia
      Unless a girl confess to you outright, you will not believe she has any feelings for you. You're always suspicious of nice girl as well.

      Natural Big Brother
      Has good affinity with younger girls (romantically or otherwise)
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
    Ragura, SeaCatAnna, Lalzparty and 2 others like this.
  3. Threadmarks: Side characters
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    • SHIROGANE MIYUKI

      Date of Birth: September 9th
      Height: 175 cm
      Title: President of the Student Council.
      Social Rank: 4
      Academic Rank: 1
      Reputation: 500
      Relationship: Best Friends, Almost Brothers

      Charisma: 8 (Very handsome and charming)
      Manliness: 8 (Masculine and somewhat intimidating)
      Alignment: +1 Order
      Contact: E-Mail, Phone Number
      Quirks: Extreme Pride, Genius at Hard Work, Poor Talents

    • RYUJU MOMO

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 162 cm
      Title: Treasurer of the Student Council
      Social Rank: 2+
      Academic Rank: ??
      Reputation: 500
      Relationship: Close Friend

      Charisma: 10 (Almost inhumanly beautiful)
      Manliness: 10 (Manliest of the men, somehow)
      Alignment: +3 Chaos
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE, Phone Number
      Quirks: Extreme Whim, Delinquent

    • YUKINOSHItA YUKINO

      Date of Birth: January 2nd
      Height: 170 cm
      Title: President of the Public Service Club.
      Social Rank: 3+
      Academic Rank: 3
      Reputation: 400
      Relationship: Friend

      Charisma: 10 (Inhumanly beautiful, almost angelic)
      Manliness: 8 (No nonsense)
      Alignment: +3 Order
      Contact: E-mail, LINE
      Quirks: Pride, Natural Genius

    • KINO KAREN

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 162 cm
      Title: Member of Mass Media Club
      Social Rank: 3+
      Academic Rank: ??
      Reputation: 150
      Relationship: Friend

      Charisma: 9 (One of top school beauties)
      Manliness: 5 (Average)
      Alignment: +1 Chaos
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE
      Quirks: Delusional, Foolishly Romantic

    • KOSE ERIKA

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 163 cm
      Title: Member of Mass Media Club
      Social Rank: 3
      Academic Rank: ??
      Reputation: 150
      Relationship: Friend

      Charisma: 8 (Traditional, distinguishable beauty)
      Manliness: 5 (Average)
      Alignment: Unknown
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE
      Quirks: Cult of Shinomiya

    • KASHIWAGI NAGISA

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 161 cm
      Title: Vice President of Public Service Club
      Social Rank: 2+
      Academic Rank: 5
      Reputation: 300
      Relationship: Friend

      Charisma: 8 (Extremely cute and pretty, if a little plain)
      Manliness: 4 (Somewhat meek)
      Alignment: +1 Order
      Contact: E-Mail
      Quirks: Unknown

    • SHIJO MAKI

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 160 cm
      Title: Secretary of Public Service Club
      Social Rank: 1
      Academic Rank: 4
      Reputation: 300
      Relationship: Friend

      Charisma: 9 (One of the top school beauties)
      Manliness: 7 (Confident and Self assured)
      Alignment: +2 Order
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE
      Quirks: Tsundere

    • HAYATO HONGO

      Date of Birth:
      Height: 176 cm
      Title: Member of Survival Game Club
      Social Rank: 3
      Academic Rank: 44
      Reputation: 300
      Relationship: Friend, Club Member

      Charisma: 8 (He's very handsome and charming)
      Manliness: 7 (Confident and self assured)
      Alignment: +1 Chaos
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE

      Athleticism: 7 (Good)
      Shooting: 5 (Mediocre)
      Quirk: Serial Romeo

    • TANUMA TSUBASA

      Date of Birth:
      Height: 170 cm
      Title: Member of Survival Game Club
      Social Rank: 3+
      Academic Rank: 128
      Reputation: 50
      Relationship: Friend, Club Member

      Charisma: 7 (Good looking but a little plain)
      Manliness: 4 (Rather meek)
      Alignment: +1 Order
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE

      Athleticism: 5 (Mediocre)
      Shooting: 6 (Average)
      Quirk: Naive, Lack of Confidence

    • TOYOSAKI SABURO

      Date of Birth:
      Height: 172 cm
      Title: Member of Survival Game Club
      Social Rank: 3
      Academic Rank: 6
      Reputation: 50
      Relationship: Friend, Club Member

      Charisma: 6 (Average)
      Manliness: 7 (Confident and self assured)
      Alignment: Neutral
      Contact: E-Mail, LINE

      Athleticism: 6 (Average)
      Shooting: 9 (Excellent)
      Quirk: Hyper Competitive, Cunning



    • MASS MEDIA CLUB PRESIDENT

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 160 cm
      Title: President of the Mass Media Club
      Social Rank: 3-
      Academic Rank: ??
      Reputation: 100
      Relationship: Senior

      Charisma: 7 (Pretty but not exceptional)
      Manliness: 4 (Somewhat meek)
      Alignment: +1 Order
      Contact: E-Mail
      Quirks: Unknown

    • SAIONJI KOTOKA

      Date of Birth: Unknown
      Height: 156 cm
      Title: None
      Social Rank: 1
      Academic Rank: ??
      Reputation: 400
      Relationship: Senior

      Charisma: 8 (Exceptional beauty)
      Manliness: 6 (Average)
      Alignment: Neutral
      Contact: None
      Quirks: Nice Girl, Polite
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
    Ragura, SeaCatAnna, Lalzparty and 2 others like this.
  4. Threadmarks: Chapter 1
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : [NSFW] - Council Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Journalism
    No. of Votes: 12
    shanagan
    bastur2
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    Flagrais
    giodan
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    McLuvin
    rocket501
    TriGayatri
    Yveski

    [X] Fairly chummy (++ Manliness, appeal to chaos)
    No. of Votes: 7
    shanagan
    Cuchulin
    Flagrais
    giodan
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    TriGayatri

    [X] Absolutely no fucks given (+++ Manliness, appeal to chaos, negative modifier with other girls
    No. of Votes: 6
    bastur2
    Cane Toad
    Kerrowe
    McLuvin
    rocket501
    Yveski

    [X] Cruiser Bike: Low ride, low growl, comfortable to ride, looks like gangster bike. (++Manliness, -Charisma, appeal to chaos)
    No. of Votes: 5
    bastur2
    Cane Toad
    inlurkshadow
    McLuvin
    rocket501

    [X] Police Bike: Touring type for long distance ride, why is this being sold? (++Charisma, -Manliness, appeal to order)
    No. of Votes: 4
    TriGayatri
    Flagrais
    kenmadragon
    Kerrowe

    [X] Sports Bike: Sleek and elegant, not as comfortable but it's certainly look cool and fast. (+Charisma)
    No. of Votes: 2
    shanagan
    giodan

    [X] Standard Bike: It's average in all aspect but still imposing and tough, getting the job done. (+Manliness)
    No. of Votes: 2
    Yveski
    Cuchulin

    [x]Music
    No. of Votes: 1
    Kerrowe

    Total No. of Voters: 13
    Backstory Tally: +4 Manliness, -1 Charisma
    Academic Rank: 10
    Social Rank: Rank 3
    Alignment: Chaos +2
    Reputation: 100 (Known by name, not much else)


    Before you know it, the hectic September had passed and the new Student Council began their work. Shirogane Miyuki was known as the first outsider student to be elected President for a while. The importance of social caste in Shuchiin Academy cannot be overstated, and Miyuki's background as a poor, destitute outsider student reliant on Scholarship was quite a hot topic to argue about. Nevertheless, he gathered enough votes to get elected, thanks to his peerless effort.

    Sometimes you wondered, is there such a thing as a genius at hard work? Because cynically speaking, Shirogane Miyuki was a talentless hack forcing himself into this cruel and unjust academy. Nevertheless, the strength of his determination was what allowed the two of you to be friends like this.

    Standing beside him was a deathly cold Goddess of death, or so you like to call her, the Goddess of lonerdom. The so-called perfect girl incarnate, blessed by numerous talents and achievement, born into one of the most elite families in Japan, the Shinomiya. That is, Shinomiya Kaguya.

    All this time, more than half a year, Shirogane Miyuki put so much effort into chasing her shadow. Of course, you also contributed and helped Miyuki passed multiple trials and tribulations that allow him to be a perfect man worthy of her attention as rival and equal.

    You have an inkling that there's something beyond simple rivalry into their relationship, nevertheless, you decided not to meddle unless asked.

    OCTOBER 2020

    It's time for you to begin your second elective class. The previous class last semester was uneventful, though Miyuki was there so you never get bored. Nevertheless, you decided to pick a different subject than him this semester.

    You decided to pick Journalism.

    From a practical standpoint, this is basically the densest and productive elective class. You're taught foreign policy, language, general research and publishing, and 100% of the activities were done using computers. In other words, almost everything relevant to the modern job market.

    You wonder what kind of people you'll meet here?

    From what you hear, most of the big names went for Calligraphy again this semester, so you're unlikely to meet a bunch of bigshots. Nevertheless, that's not really a problem for you, as someone who has very few friends in the first place.

    Wrong.

    It seems that two anomalies had slipped under the radar.

    Kashiwagi Nagisa was the Daughter of the President of a major shipbuilding company in Japan, looking at that fact, it sounds like someone you shouldn't really deal with casually. Though admittedly, it's not as if you're not chummy enough with Ryuju of all people.

    But the second one is even more terrifying.

    Shijo Maki was the Daughter of Shijo Group, an offshoot family branch of the Shinomiya who decided to expand outside as the Shinomiya dominate the Japanese economy. Shijo group was a massive multinational conglomerate, and it's total wealth and influence was not less than Shinomiya's own, combined.

    Along with them, the more noticeable sort of students there was Kino Karen and Erika Kose. Kino Karen was the daughter of Bodansha's CEO, a major publishing company in Japan. Erika Kose, if you remember, her family owned a Miso Company. Of all these four girls, Kose was the closest to you in social strata, as your father is a famous producer of a massive Idol production company, and your mother being the General Manager of a powerful Cellphone and Banking company in Tokyo.

    Unfortunately, aside from that, your information on them was fairly limited. Nevertheless, you had to work with what info you have


    [​IMG]

    And so began the introduction to Journalism class. To be honest, you studied this ahead of time so it should be easy to relearn everything with a preexisting foundation of knowledge. Nevertheless, you should work according to your own desired pace, though the way you present yourself will influence how people look at you.

    But hey, since when you care about reputation?

    [ ] Be proactive (Hard)
    [ ] Work normally
    [ ] Be passive (Easy)
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
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  5. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.1
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : [NSFW] - Council Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Work normally
    No. of Votes: 6
    kenmadragon
    Cuchulin
    DignifiedSpectre
    shanagan
    Sir Bidoof
    TastyPocki

    [X] Be proactive (Hard)
    No. of Votes: 5
    Cane Toad
    Lucidum
    Malason123
    NewGame+Just
    rocket501

    [x] Be passive (Easy)
    No. of Votes: 2
    Renko
    eternall72

    [x] Be proactive
    No. of Votes: 2
    Ideas-Guy
    bastur2

    Total No. of Voters: 15

    You decided to learn and work diligently.

    Part of you felt that it was pointless. To work is to lose, that was something that both you and your father agreed. Unlike normal subjects in mandatory classes, elective classes have no objective grading and examination. It was purely there to fill in for wasted weekdays so that students won't be idle or waste their youth in dangerous stunts, while at the same time learning at their own relaxed pace.

    However, at the same time, you also believe that hard works always go rewarded. Unlike dreams who betray the most, hard work betrays none.

    Part of you still a bit stiff when communicating with people, but it was hardly as bad as it was in middle school. Shirogane Miyuki had been helpfully teaching you at the very least to stop looking creepy in front of people.

    Being proactive allowed you to get closer to people who nominally away from your reach, especially when you caught their interest. No one dislikes hard worker, people only dislike tryhard attention seeker. And you're not, you work only for yourself.

    The attention you get can be a blessing or a curse, being the center of attention can be tiring and too much hassle.

    "What it means to be a journalist?"

    What an idle question, but also a very important one.

    "Someone who writes a journal about an ongoing or recent event." would be the literal answer to that question.

    "Ehhhh?!"

    Ah, there goes again, your trauma is coming back. What's with girls and laughing incessantly over the smallest thing? It always confused you out, so you decided to smile at her in response. Nice girls are truly the worst!

    "You're too hilarious!" Shijo Maki laughed incredulously, her twin tail flailed as she did.

    And then there's this bitch!

    "Then let me ask something back in response." You tell them, "What's the most important aspect of a news piece?"

    "It has to be up to date, what use of news about things that people already know." Shijo huffed arrogantly, seriously this girl's ego is bigger than the collective heads of this class can contain.

    "Umm, it has to be appealing or catchy?" Kashiwagi guessed, "I mean people need to be interested to know about it in the first place."

    "It has to be accurate and authentic." Kino and Kose say, somewhat seriously. As expected of die-hard Mass Media club members, they embody the true core of journalism. Nevertheless, ideological purity never brings you anywhere in this corrupt and unjust world...

    The girls ended up arguing among themselves right in front of you, and you're being ignored completely now. That's not shocking actually, that's more or less expected.

    You're just an unknown mob in this group, this would not change whether you got to Shuchiin or not...

    These four must be really close friends.

    [ ] Agree with Shijo (Fast)
    [ ] Agree with Kashiwagi (Flashy)
    [ ] Agree with Kino and Kose (Accurate)
    [ ] Stay quiet
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
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  6. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.2
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : Council Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 2 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [x] Agree with Kino and Kose (Accurate)
    No. of Votes: 9
    roronoa20
    Eucuron
    Him01
    kenmadragon
    kijin666
    Lmchakone
    Malason123
    shanagan
    skaro

    Total No. of Voters: 9
    You opened your mouth as you lean on your chair, with arms crossed.

    "When it comes to a news piece, it might be true that the most important thing is the truth." You say to them, "The accuracy of the news might be the most important."

    "See? He agrees with us." You can swear that Kino's nose seems to grow by a couple of inches with how smug she looks at the moment.

    Kino Karen was a beautiful girl, that much you have to admit. From first glance, her face didn't look fully Japanese at all. You're not sure if it was just recessive genes or she really has foreign blood but that's not important. With her hair being the longest among others, exposing her forehead, Kino radiates unusually feminine aura.

    When she stops talking that is.

    Or maybe you're too prejudiced.

    Kose Erika was much more traditional Japanese beauty, compared to her. She's not exceptional, otherworldly beauty like the famed Shinomiya Kaguya, but that actually makes you more bothered. It's as if someone like Kose is within your reach, and that thought is terrifying.

    Kashiwagi Nagisa had this airy, innocent and childish aura to her. Like a sheet of white silk, it was quite tempting to think she's the type that's easily corrupted. Still, you shouldn't look at people by the cover. Due to her status, she might be more cunning than she appears...

    And then there's Shijo Maki. For someone with a physical resemblance to the Goddess Kaguya, she sure lacks even a shred of elegance. Sure, her mannerism was honed, the way she gestures and poses, something like that, the mannerism of a princess. However, in the end, everything was superficial.

    This group of four sure is messed up.

    Then again, neither you nor Miyuki fit into the definition of a normal.

    "But... that's not necessarily because of a moral standpoint." You explain.

    "Huh, why is that?" Erika raises her eyebrows.

    "Think about for that moment, actually, you're girls so you probably understand this more than I do." You awkwardly gestures, "Why do girls like gossips so much?"

    The four of them look at each other.

    "Curiosity." You point, "Most people don't always seek the truth, they seek affirmation for preexisting bias and belief. I know that's true, it's expected, and so on. Most people don't like being proven wrong, and they'll see affirmation through gossips and tabloid news cycles. At the end of the day, most news pieces are built based on an established narrative. In this sense, Kashiwagi and Shijo are correct. Quick and flashy brings in money."

    "Eh?" Kashiwagi looks confused.

    "But news piece did not stop at publishing." You smile ominously, "As news reached the public, there will be reactions. Some praise, some condemnation, clarification, and corrections will soon follow. And when that happens, the courts will get involved. In other words, lawsuits. When a lawsuit happens, the ultimate defense is always objective truth. Unless you throw a sack of money into lawyers to spin harder than a blender, you're not going to win that."

    "Scary." Shijo twitches a bit, though she tried to suppress it.

    Karen claps her hands, "Ah I've heard this before because different countries have a different definition and standard of libel, publishing fake news can be disastrous. Not to mention you can still be sued for secondary damages. Even media giants fell into oblivion when the right lawsuit is brought."


    "Exactly." You stand up as you shut down your laptop, "Before thinking about selling your story, always make sure to cover your ass. When you're unsure if the information you have is the truth, put a disclaimer."

    "Ehhh, what is that? Disappointing!" Erika cringes in response to your words, not that you can blame her. This is the kind of person you are.

    Someone who looks too dimly on modern society, while reveling in it. Still, the fact that you manage to talk with classmates (girls) without stuttering, that's kind of achievement by itself.

    Still, this talk about news, gossips, and rumors makes you reminisce about something. Something that happens in the past, ah yes, your days in middle school. When you confess to a girl you like, the eleventh one to be correct, the news spread among her friends and then...

    It was hell.


    If the truth can be so hurtful to the victim, what about lies? You can hardly imagine how disastrous that would be.

    "Words have no power to impress the mind without the exquisite horror of their reality." You laugh as you put your laptop in your bag, intending to leave. The girls look confused as they try to process what you said, especially since you said it in Japanese.

    Except for one.

    "Wait." Shijo looks like she turns serious for a moment as she says, "Edgar Allan Poe, wasn't it?"


    You grin at her wordlessly as you finally leave the door on your way out. Miyuki and Ryuju both have after-school activities in the council, so you're more or less on your own.

    To be honest, it's been lonely ever since the election passed. As part of going home club, it's not like you can't just study your ass harder than ever. But that feels like too much of a waste. After increasing his rank all the way to the top ten, You know there is diminishing return in terms of the amount of study time versus an increase in exam grades.

    Studying harder might not be worth the hassle. As long as you can stay in the top 50, you can still maintain the scholarship.

    But if not studying, what else? Should you buy some random games to play? Maybe too much of a waste of money...

    As you walk down the stairs that connect the Shuchiin's front gate and the main road, you hear someone calling you. "Hikigaya-san?!"

    Maybe that's just your hallucination?

    "Hikigaya-san, wait! OW!"

    Ah, that's actually real. And there are two of them.

    As you turn your back to face the people in question, you see Kino and Kose chasing after you desperately. And thus, it causes them to trip one-third of their way down, and fortunately, you're there to catch them both by the back. It's probably doesn't hurt all that much, but it's super embarrassing. So embarrassing you get second-hand embarrassment. You feel the numbness in your arm begins to subside as you let them go.

    "Ah, th-thank you." Both girls look flushed and move away.

    Eh, not unexpected. They probably feel icky being touched by someone like you.

    "Nevermind that, what do you need?" You ask them.

    "Umm, if we're not wrong, you're President Shirogane's closest friend, aren't you?"

    "Far as Shuchiin academy concerned yeah." You tell them as you continue walking, "You want to know something about Miyuki or what?"

    Those two are a member of Shuchiin High's mass media club, why wouldn't they be curious? Besides, they're not going to miss a chance by ignoring his close friend when it comes to information sources. That's just common sense!

    "Umm, you said it before that it's best to know the truth before spreading stories but." Kino asks hesitantly, "Was it true that President and Kaguya-sama are going out?"

    "You're still insisting about this stupid rumor." Kose rubs her temple, clearly frustrated with her friend's shipper antic. Then again, it's not like the thought didn't cross you even once. However, you know that Miyuki will never keep a secret from you. Especially with how proud and egoistical he can be about his achievement.

    There's no way he'll not brag to heaven if he scored with such high-level girl.

    [ ] "What a stupid rumor."
    [ ] "I don't know. Maybe not."
    [ ] "It's not impossible, but that's not really the case at the moment."
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
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  7. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.3
    ZeroXSEED

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    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] "It's not impossible, but that's not really the case at the moment."
    No. of Votes: 11
    Kerrowe
    Blonddude42
    Cap'nSmurfy
    Flagrais
    NewGame+Just
    PandaVenom
    rocket501
    shanagan
    taovkool
    TastyPocki
    Yuki

    [X] "I don't know. Maybe not."
    No. of Votes: 8
    kenmadragon
    BlueMangoAdea
    Cuchulin
    eraserman
    Ideas-Guy
    linkjames24
    Lucidum
    Moniker LewdInSky

    [X] "What a stupid rumor."
    No. of Votes: 2
    Cane Toad
    BB54

    Total No. of Voters: 21

    "It's not impossible, but that's not really the case at the moment." You assure them, "They're not dating, this I'm sure."


    Whether they are attracted to each other or just you seeing what isn't there, only God knows. However, what you're very sure about is the fact that they're not going out.

    "What do you mean it's not 'impossible', Hikigaya-san?" Kose looks somewhat perturbed as if she's not approving the idea in the first place.

    "Whether they will go out in the future is unclear, but the possibility is not zero."

    Especially with how stubborn Shirogane Miyuki was, trying to get her attention. Come to think of it...

    Considering what happens between you and Miyuki in the last six months, you probably have a part in fueling that fire. It's kind of disturbing how much Shirogane Miyuki improves as a person as long as he put any effort into it.

    Shirogane Miyuki was a parody of wretched human beings, with all of his attributes except his face start in the negatives. Yet, looking at he is now, no one would know the old Shirogane Miyuki was someone who has minimum passing grades and incredibly unathletic.

    There's no way his effort to pursue Shinomiya will remain unnoticed. Not by Shinomiya, not by the public at large. But you wonder why the rumor acts as if his pursuit was reciprocated?

    Because you know that's not really the case. It was blatantly one-sided rivalry, borderline obsession even.

    "At the moment, their relationship is more like rivals than lovers, so you better stop imagining what's not there." You tell them, "You'll get killed doing that."

    "Rivalry?" Kino blinks in confusion, "Ah, I see! Because of their rivalry, their feelings may turn into love?"

    You see a glint of hope on Kino's clear eyes, and you regret the fact that you just put a disturbingly romantic situation in a gullible maiden's mind.

    "Yes, but that's just a possibility. Seeing as you're obsessed with truth, the idea that they love each other is false. If they like each other or dating, I would be the first person to know."

    "That's probably not going to happen." Kose looks relieved but also disturbed, "I understand, we're not going to talk about this to anyone."

    "You better do, else no one knows the sheer anger Shinomiya can incite on unfounded rumors." You warn them.

    Kino looks like she's a lost cause, however. But as long as Kose is there to rein her, things will probably turn out okay.

    "Kaguya-sama isn't that petty, she's so perfect and gallant that something like rumor wouldn't leave any stain on her." Kose frowns in response.

    "What, really?" You raise your eyebrows.

    "Kaguya-sama is like an angel the world has been looking for!" Kino says with starry eyes.

    "Her brilliant light shines upon mankind!" Kose agrees and they, in incredibly disturbing fashion, intertwine their fingers together.

    From a distance, it will look intimate and romantic, but seeing them up close like this is horrifying!

    "And I believe President Shirogane is the only one qualified to stand beside her, ahh!" Kino shouts.

    Kose's enthralled expression turns dark in response and scolds her friend, "I believe that belief is open to interpretation."

    Kino, in response, glares back with a certain intensity. "And I'm afraid I can't let that slide."

    You're absolute speechless, one is a shipper fool and one is a Shinomiya fanatic, you're put between a rock and hard place today, for sure.

    But at least they're not nice girls, you can't handle nice girls. Not with your trauma.

    "By the way, you're done? If there's something else you need, ask away." You tell them.

    Kose and Kino look around confused, before they realize it they ended up in a parking spot not too far away from the school, behind an abandoned factory. This is the parking spot you normally use.

    Normally you just go through the factory complex with your clumsy parkour skill. Many thanks to Ryuju momo for teaching you that, and you're improving every day.

    Kose looks like she's afraid of something, "Uh, why are we here again?"

    "Oh yeah, we're following Hikigaya-san." Kino finally comes back to her senses, "Why are we here, Hikigaya-san?"

    You look at her with an incredulous expression, then presented the Yamaha Dragstar 250 beside you. "I park my motorbike here, why?"

    "Wha! The rumored Shuchiin black rider is you?!"

    "What kind of stupid rumor is that?!" You raise your voice in pure and utter disbelief.

    "Yeah, there's a rumor circulating the school about one rebel student who's involved with the Yakuza and goes around the town on a giant gangster bike, terrorizing everyone!" Kino explains to you.

    You look at your weedy 250cc bike and sighed, they call THIS compact cruiser a giant? Just how sheltered Shuchiin princesses are?

    "Look, I'm on good terms with Ryuju group because my friendship with their daughter, doesn't mean I'm a Yakuza too. Besides which, I didn't break any rules, how could I be a rebel?"

    Kose squeezed her eyes, "But you're not allowed to bring motorcycle into school."

    "And we're outside school now, so I never break that rule." You insist.

    A legal loophole, bitches! How's that?

    "That's true." The duo gives up.

    "Umm, Hikigaya-san, are you going somewhere after this?" Kino blushes a bit, "H-how about we have some tea? I know a nice cafe around here."

    You freeze for a moment, but rack your brains for a more likely explanation. And found one.

    "You want to ask more stuff about Miyuki again?"

    "Well, that's too." Kino rolled her eyes aside mischievously, "But more than that, you seem to know a lot about media and journalism."

    Kose, on the other hand, doesn't look like she has ulterior motives. "Yeah, it would be nice to talk about it with other boys. As you can tell, our mass media club is exclusively girls at the moment."

    Well even if you agree, you'll never spill bad stuff about Miyuki. To be honest, you dislike his fake and show off nature, but Miyuki is a hard worker who's willing to run through a thorny part to achieve the seemingly impossible.

    You respect that part of him.

    You might be a wee bit cynical, but you're not a betrayer.

    Even if you agree to go, there's no need to think deeper and look into anything other than obviously superficial, intellectual interest. They want to talk about media and journalism, and nothing else.

    [ ] "Sure."
    [ ] "Maybe next time."
    [ ] "No, thanks."



     
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  8. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.4
    ZeroXSEED

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    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] "Sure."
    No. of Votes: 15
    kokuenDG
    bastur2
    BB54
    Blonddude42
    BlueMangoAdea
    Cuchulin
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Flagrais
    Ideas-Guy
    Lmchakone
    PandaVenom
    roronoa20
    SEKALE
    shanagan
    TastyPocki

    [X] "No, thanks."
    No. of Votes: 2
    Cane Toad
    slime jello

    [X] "Maybe next time."
    No. of Votes: 2
    kenmadragon
    Kerrowe

    Total No. of Voters: 19

    "Sure."

    Seeing not much reason to reject, you agree with their invitation and join them in a little tea time after school. It's not as if you're completely lacking in an ulterior motive, to be honest.

    It's been six months since you moved to Tokyo, and no girls ever invited you to anything. Sure there's Momo, but she's a basket case. She probably didn't even think of you as a real man, and hanging out with Yakuza underlings are far away from romantic.

    You're thirsty, that's a fact. You're horny and romance-starved just like every other healthy 16 years old boy. Being invited by girls like this, why would you refuse?

    "Great, where should we go again?" Kose asks, "We don't know if any of there cafes are up to your taste, Hikigaya-san."

    "Anything is fine by me, even Saize." You straightforwardly tell them.

    "Sai..."

    "...Ze?"

    You're expecting them to laugh right there immediately since it's the absolute least romantic place to go. Girls in Chiba also like that. But, for a casual outing? There's absolutely no better place than that. High school students in Chiba love Saize, Tokyo can't possibly be that different.

    "It's a joke." You brush their confusion away immediately.

    "What is Saize?" Karen asks.

    "Umm, I think it was one of the Italian restaurant chains?" Kose guesses wildly, "Saize... Saizeriya or something?"

    "Are you kidding me?"

    Just how much an anti-pleb are these Shuchiin girls, not knowing one of the biggest restaurant chains in Japan? Honestly, you pitied them. These girls basically like flowers raised in a glasshouse, never knowing nature.

    "Saizeriya is the best friend of all poor students everywhere. In other words, it's a heaven for us plebeian." You tell them, "It's an Italian-themed Japanese restaurant chain with hundreds of branches all over the country. Their taste is so-so, but the main selling point is the immensely low price. People who have been in Shuchiin for all their lives probably never go to one."

    "A place where girls of Shuchiin will never go." Kose's eyes widened and gleaming, "Interesting."

    "We can make an article out of this!" Kino agrees with her.

    "Please bring us there, Hikigaya-san!" They ask you.

    Fuck.

    No, that's not an understatement. Even though you pretend to be calm, the excitement of going with two pretty girls combined with the frustration of their ignorance made you run your mouth needlessly.

    Well, it doesn't help that Saize is one of your favorite places, so you take the matter rather close and personally.

    "Just make sure you don't have a food allergy or something." You warn them, "Also the closest Saizeriya is about 8 minutes walking from here."

    Instead of having they walk you decide to commute them one by one via your motorcycle. You can tell how scared and ashamed they are with how they try not to hug you but also gripping your jacket tightly since they're afraid of falling down.

    And so here we go, Saizeriya.

    "So crowded!" Kino mutters, "Is it always this crowded?"

    "No, this isn't bad at all, you should see how it looks like during lunch and dinner period." You scoff at her almost childlike expression of marvel.

    "The interior is huge, but the number of tables is huge, it feels a little cramped." Kose isn't quite as impressed, but she still pays quite an amount of attention to her surroundings. "Children are running around too."

    "There's absolutely no privacy isn't there?" Kino nods.

    "This is what people call hiding in plain sight." You tell them, "The number of customers is large enough that it's actually easier for someone to hide, as long as they don't appear too fancy. I think the main problem is your uniforms now."

    "We'll keep that in mind."

    The shock on Kino and Kose's face when they look at the menu is astounding to say at the least.

    "Uhhh... are you sure this isn't a scam?" Kino whispers carefully.

    "Rude, this much is expected for us lower and middle-class plebs." You chastise her, "I told you the price is cheap, didn't I?"

    "But not this cheap!" Kose almost flails her hands, "I've been to normal cafe and restaurant before, this is too dubious, it's scary!"

    "Kose, your father has a Miso company, surely you understand a simple concept such as economy of scale?" You almost slam your face on the table.

    "Yes, of course, I am." She looks a bit insulted by your provocative statement, "What's that has to do with this?"

    "Saizeria food isn't cooked on-site, they're prepared in a factory kitchen somewhere in this city and distributed early in the day to the restaurant chains like this." You explain to them, "They're heated up and served as needed, but for the most part they will be kept in cold storage on the back."

    "Amazing."

    "I see because you're saving on labor cost by centralizing food production..." Kose looks around, noticing something. She looks at the place where the customers seem to get a drink on their own. "Self-service drinks? For a place this huge and crowded, the number of waitresses was rather minimal? Is this for cost-saving measure too?"

    "It's called a drink bar. You pay once, you get unlimited refills as you see fit." You tell her.

    "How... how convenient," Kose mutters, "How generous."

    "Amazing, free drinks..." Kino isn't that different.

    You almost lose it, right there. But you take a deep breath and calm yourself.

    They're not idiots, just uninformed. And you feel obliged to tell them.

    "Saize as franchise symbolize the modern food industry, as the cost of labor exceeds the cost of ingredients, it's easier to make food cheap by minimizing the number of human beings involved."

    "Amazing!" Kino brightly smiles and praises you, "Hikigaya-san sure is well learned!"

    That's just common sense, girl. But then again, what can one expect? Actually, most commoners don't really care about how it works either. They only care about the fact that the food they eat is cheap, safe, and reasonably delicious.

    "Let's order our food and drink immediately as we talk"

    "Wait wait wait final question." Kino stops you, "Is there minimal order?"

    They must be terrified by the number of calories. Eh, girls are like that no matter if they're rich or not. But they'd be too embarrassed to order small things.

    "There's none, just order as you see fit. Excuse me, we want to make our order." You call a waitress, who immediately approaches you with a smile. "I'd like Focaccia with cinnamon sugar, milk gelato with coffee jelly, and drink bar."

    That's actually plenty of snacks, but to be honest your lunch today wasn't too fulfilling.

    "Umm, milk gelato with cherry and raspberry sauce, and drink bar... please?" Kino finally speaks.

    "Ice tiramisu and custard pudding, and drink bar." Kose also orders what she wants. You notice that she doesn't seem to be afraid of calories, unlike her friend.

    They also take some of the pictures of the food and restaurant interior for documentation.

    In the end, none of you talk about journalism and instead of talking about restaurants and the food industry. You have to admit, once you got past the annoyance and disbelief, their curiosity about common things is rather... fascinating.

    And to think that compared to the world-class super-elites like Shinomiya or Shijo, Kino Karen and Kose Erika was rather on down to earth? It's kind of horrifying realization.

    You remembered talking with the previous Student Council President with Miyuki. The previous President want Miyuki to join and eventually succeed him precisely because he wanted a common person to introduce common knowledge to the sheltered students of Shuchiin.

    Alas, Miyuki getting elected never bring any changes to the students as a whole. As shown by the two girls in front of you.

    In a sense, you win against Miyuki in that regard. However pointless, it brings a small warmth to the back of your mind.

    "Wahhh, in the end, we're getting derailed, I'm sorry!" Kino apologizes profusely.

    "But at least we can write interesting articles now, thank you Hikigaya-san." Kose smiles widely.

    "I don't mind, then I shall leave."

    "Wait." Kino hurriedly pulls her phone out, "Do you mind if we exchange contacts?"

    "Ah yeah, me too." Kose follows shortly.

    Now that? That's shocking. In all your sixteen year life, never once a girl would voluntarily exchange contacts with you. Whenever they do, it's because obligation, and even then they look hesitant.

    But you know deep down, you shouldn't be too hopeful. Eventually, they'll get bored with you and forget. Even so, is there anything wrong with indulging in it a little?

    [ ] Share a LINE
    [ ] Share e-mail
    [ ] Refuse
     
  9. Threadmarks: Chapter 1 End
    ZeroXSEED

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    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [x] Share e-mail
    No. of Votes: 12
    kenmadragon
    bastur2
    BlueMangoAdea
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    Eucuron
    Him01
    Kieron
    Learned Knave
    Observed
    shanagan
    TastyPocki

    [X] Share a LINE
    No. of Votes: 11
    eraserman
    BB54
    Blonddude42
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Malason123
    NewGame+Just
    PandaVenom
    Renko
    rocket501
    roronoa20
    Yuki

    Total No. of Voters: 23

    To be honest, you're conflicted. On the other hand, you feel that giving LINE feels a little too soon, it's just against your sensibilities. Make no mistake, you think giving LINE on the first meeting is normie crap, and that's bad.

    It feels like too much a leap, ignoring personal space.

    On the other hand, giving an e-mail feels too formal and distant. And you don't want to get laughed at for being too much of a goody-two-shoes. Even office workers nowadays use LINE, e-mail is very old fashioned. It's like sending letters in the age of Fax.

    Perhaps it's the reason why you get dumped and ignored all the time in middle school. You're just not ready into this messaging thing.

    It's easy to block or get blocked via e-mail contact, but blocking or getting blocked in LINE carries so much more connotation of hostility compared to e-mail. Not to mention, you can tell if you're being ignored purposely in LINE.

    That's going to hurt.

    You're not ready for that kind of pain again.

    "Is e-mail fine?"

    "What? You didn't use LINE?"

    You exchanged mail addresses with both girls quickly.

    "I use E-mail with Miyuki, I mean President Shirogane too."

    That wasn't technically a lie, as Miyuki doesn't have a smartphone, the two of you basically communicate with each other through E-mail and normal phone call instead. Aside from Momo, the other girls that you have on your LINE contacts are your sister Komachi, and Miyuki's sister, Kei. You don't need to tell these two Mass Media girls that you do, in fact, use LINE.

    A lot of people told Miyuki to cave in and get with the times, but so far he still refused to budge. This is not really a secret, so you're fine disclosing it, as many other people in regular contact with Miyuki knew that fact.

    "Ahh, I'm using the same method of communication as President. I'm so happy!" Kino yells out, borderline ecstatic even. Of course, even Kose feel disturbed with that brazen display of fangirlism, "Maybe Kaguya-sama too, only exclusively use E-mail with him!"

    "Get a grip Karen, what are you doing?" Kose practically yanks her from the sheer anger. "There's no way the smart and dignified Kaguya-sama can be behind the times like that."

    You're about to say that using e-mail is exactly the kind of traditional Ojou archetype would do. Honestly, could that Ice goddess even use emoticon if it would save her life? But you don't want to get involved any more than you already are. Besides, you might cause Kose's own fangirl side to erupt saying that. No way.

    Let alone being ignored, you have this nagging feeling that you might get harassed instead. This is some monkey paw's shit. Having these two on your contact list might not be worth bragging.

    "...I don't even know what to say back in response." You tell them, wryly smiling at the same time. "See you later then."

    "Ah, see you later." The two girls momentarily stopped fighting to say goodbye.

    At times like this, a strategic retreat is absolutely mandatory!

    Anyway, since tomorrow is Saturday, and you have no club activity, you'd probably go to Chiba and spend weekends there, lazying around the house with your beloved cute little sister. That would be nice.

    CHAPTER 1 END

    Change of relationship:
    Kino Karen: Stranger -> Acquaintance
    Kose Erika: Stranger -> Acquaintance


    Added contacts:
    Kino Karen (E-Mail)
    Kose Erika (E-Mail)


    Bonus round
    [ ] Write-in what you want to do in the weekend in Chiba (Optional, write Skip if nothing)
     
  10. Threadmarks: Chapter 2
    ZeroXSEED

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    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [ X ] Visit Komachi, play Vita chan and perhaps spending time with Kamakura
    No. of Votes: 8
    Him01
    bastur2
    Cuchulin
    Flagrais
    kenmadragon
    Kerrowe
    Observed
    Renko

    [X] Visit komachi and spend some time with her.
    No. of Votes: 1
    Fieryfoxpaws

    [X] Walk to the store, chance to meet oregairu character.
    No. of Votes: 1
    SEKALE

    [x]Spend some time with Ryuju Momo
    No. of Votes: 1
    Lmchakone

    Total No. of Voters: 11


    As always you end up going to Chiba on the weekend, bringing along a small amount of Tokyo-exclusive souvenirs. Around this time of the week, you usually just laze around with your sister, and this is what you have in mind as you parked your bike in your home's small front yard.

    "I'm home." You open the door.

    You hear rapid sounds of thud and your cute little sister shows up from the living room. With a big grin, she greets you. "Welcome back, Onii-chan."

    "I'm home, this is for you." You raise the souvenir bag.

    "Thank you."

    You walk upstairs and entered your bedroom.

    Still the same as always, with only a few things missing when you rented your own house in Tokyo. It's not a small room by any stretch but it's rather cramped due to several shelves inside.

    Then you change to the more comfortable tracksuit, as true Hikigaya should in their spare time.

    "How was it, Komachi? School going as usual?"

    "Well, the work in the student council was rather busy, but Komachi is fine with that." Komachi laughs.

    Ah yes.

    Just like Miyuki, Komachi was elected a student council president in her own school. Student Council work in normal school is far simpler, there's no national-scale politics at work.

    You wish you're joking, but after getting involved in Miyuki's campaign, it was hilarious beyond pale how different the scale involved was.

    (You had to stop Momo from blackmailing a candidate for crying out loud.)

    "Do you have issues with studying? I'll help you if that's needed."

    "Nah, it's fine." Komachi sighs, "What about you, Onii-chan?"

    "Aside from the fact that I started attending electives this week, not much." You tell her, "Going for Journalism this time."

    "Ho? Tell me! Tell me!"

    You more or less summarize the situation at the elective class and what happens afterward. Just like you do, the tales of Kaguya fanatic and Kaguya/Miyuki shipper is something to behold.

    "Why is that you always attract weird girls, Onii-chan?"

    Though Komachi had learned about your friendship with Momo, they never meet or interact directly yet. You probably need to get back into that sometime, but the schedule three months ahead is going to be hectic.

    There's a sports festival and culture festival to consider.

    "Yeah, like you're any better." You bop her head, "But because they're weird, it's for the better."

    "Oho, don't tell me you're interested in them, Onii-chan?" Komachi squeezes her eyes and grins teasingly.

    "Pfftt, as if." You scoff in response, "In actuality, them being an oddball is a good thing, that means I wouldn't fall in love with them."

    Though that's rather pessimistic thought even for your standard. Maintaining contact with them alone would be something you consider good luck. Beggar can't be a chooser.

    After all, being a house husband is your aspiration, so you need to marry a rich girl in Shuchiin and get pampered. Something you learned from your 11 times rejection at Middle School in that before you confess to someone, you need to make sure they know that you exist in the first place.

    There's something like a friendzone to consider... but is that really important? Being friend-zoned would be a vast improvement over the treatment you experienced before.

    "Careful, Onii-chan, Murphy is always watching." She warns you.

    "Shut it, you naughty girl!" You proceed to tickle her.

    After separated, your relationship with your sister only getting better overall. Your sister is the only family member you honestly can say truly beloved. You still respect and care about your mother, to a degree. But your father is a lost cause.

    You spend the remainder of your days playing games with her as you talk with her about trivial stuff. Kamakura, the ever rebellious lord cat, is unusually affectionate and sleeps on your lap without care for the world.

    Back then he would try to ignore or lord over you, any form of bonding between human and cat would be within his discretion. However, since you decided to go to Shuchiin, Kamakura probably understands that the time you spend in Chiba is limited, and makes use of it for maximum pampering.

    Absence truly makes heart fonder, who'd have thunk?

    Maybe that's the reason why your mother has grown increasingly attentive these past few months.

    But again, your father is a lost cause.

    All in all, it's a beautiful weekend, and you come back rather refreshed.

    CHAPTER 2

    Something that you and Komachi talked about before in Chiba rings somewhat true. When you tell Komachi you rejected the appointment in the Student Council cabinet, you ended up with a vast amount of free time.

    When she asks if you didn't just study harder, you tell her how wasteful it was. You practically doubled your study time, and you 'only' rise from rank 24 to rank 10.

    You can probably keep this current pace forever, but that's basically your maximum. Going further than this? You'll be burned out. You will probably have to study at a near-death level to reach anywhere close to Miyuki in grades.

    So she more or less tells you that your only option to fill that hollow, wasted free time is either searching for part-time work or join a club.

    Working with your father pays a ton, that's something to consider. Now that you're in Tokyo, you're basically on arms reach. You don't even need to grovel, considering your father badger you for it in the first place.

    There's also Shuchiin school to consider, they can always use an errand boy. But for that, you need connections. If you're part of the student council, that's probably easy, but since you're just ordinary plebeian now...

    And the other option is joining a club.

    This is getting increasingly difficult.

    Anyway, the school begins as normal, and before you know it lunchtime is coming. Today, you bring more food than usual, mostly for yourself, because last week you ended up snacking a ton. And that's bad for the wallet.

    Extra-large DIY battery-powered bento box should do just fine.

    (Someday you know those fratboy level experiments might kill you, that's why you need jobs, club, or both)

    As usual, you spend your lunch-time with Momo and Miyuki. Though Miyuki is from a different class, she always drags him here to join the table.

    Miyuki was too much of a pussy to reject.

    Miyuki and Ryuju weren't originally this close, even though they worked closely in the council since the first semester. It's when you become Ryuju's close friend that the whole chain of the relationship became a solid triangle.

    Your friendships cemented throughout the campaign and election season, more or less. Close enough that no one is willing to look down on you or Miyuki anymore.

    "That's a lot of lunch for one person." Ryuju licked her lips, "Let me have a taste."

    Even though her lunch always top tier, she always the type to crave for a new experience. As such, looking at your super awesome meat bun, she wants to take a stab and devour.

    Sometimes you really forget that this volatile creature is a girl. Your lunch is going to get messy.

    [ ] Chopstick fencing!
    [ ] Share it anyway
    [ ] Shamelessly trade bento
     
  11. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.1
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    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Shamelessly trade bento
    No. of Votes: 14
    Lucidum
    BB54
    Flagrais
    Him01
    inlurkshadow
    Kerrowe
    Kieron
    Malason123
    NewGame+Just
    Observed
    PandaVenom
    Renko
    roronoa20
    Yuki

    [X] Chopstick fencing!
    No. of Votes: 4
    kenmadragon
    Cuchulin
    shanagan
    TastyPocki

    [X] Share it anyway
    No. of Votes: 2
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Lmchakone

    Total No. of Voters: 20

    You use your chopsticks to block her own, which makes her irked. "Move."

    "Sorry, can't have free lunch? Wanna trade?"

    "Mhh, Shameless." She grins, "But don't think I'm not aware of the worth of my lunchbox."

    "Oh, the Princess can also use bargaining?" You goad her.

    Ryuju opens her lunch box to show the content, "Half my lunch for yours."

    "Half and half." You cross your arm, smugly.

    "Don't be an obstinate bastard."

    "Equivalent exchange, bitch."

    The small argument between you attracts some of the other students, who look somewhat convinced that it might just end in a bloodbath, that is, your blood about to be spilled.

    "Ladies and gentlemen, please, what the hell are you doing?" Miyuki squeezes his eyes in disbelief, "You're scaring the rest of the class."

    "Making trade deal duh." You slam the table, "So what about it?"

    "Two thirds!" Ryuju finally relents, and you immediately nods.

    "Deal."

    Ryuju comes back into her senses and bit her thumb, "Damn it, scammed again!"

    "It's a fair trade, don't call it a scam." You protest her in response.

    And so the trade is being done, so to speak. Ryuju gets two out of three meat buns, and you get half of her lunch. It's quite a complicated menu, but fairly balanced nonetheless.

    The problem is, you need more calories. Ryuju eats a lot for the standard of Shuchiin girls, but still not as much as growing up, athletic high-school boys.

    "Miyuki, trade the shrimps with half the egg rolls and crispy mushroom, yes or no?" You ask him.

    Indeed, the expensive set of shrimps on Ryuju's box would be something that Miyuki has zero chance to eat normally. But in a situation like this, you need something that would fill you better.

    Needless to say, it's one of Miyuki's favorite food items.

    "...You made an offer I cannot refuse." Miyuki sheds a single tear.

    Eh, he'll be fine. You actually worried so much more about Ryuju, would half her lunch and two rich meat buns fit in that tiny body? But it's not as if she cares and devour them whole.

    "Whoa, what is this green thing?" She blinks when she cut the meat bun with the chopstick, then ate it. "The inside is way too fresh and the inside skin is so soft!"

    "Duh, it's Hachiman special. The skin is made from two different flour and the inside filler has herb and vegetables covered in solid fat. The skin is fried but the content isn't, and then it's steamed to soften the inside while keeping the outer skin tough."

    "The fat inside protects the filler from overcooking and losing flavor, the steaming process removed the excess vegetable oil. In other words, its pure taste of minced beef is untainted, while the freshness of greenery in the filler counteracts the melted fat." Miyuki comments, "Isn't that true?"

    "What the hell, that's a technique for making high-class dumpling?!" Ryuju gasps, "Uhhh..."

    Alas, poor Ryuju, can you take more calories than usual for the lunch? But of course, Ryuju can't go back on her words and end up stuffed like a doll, unable to move when she's done.

    "Are you alright?" Miyuki asks with concern.

    "No, I don't think I'm going to vomit or anything. I just want to rest now." She burped, "Sorry."

    You and Miyuki just laugh your asses off on the sigh of helpless Yakuza princess, though Miyuki tries to suppress his. At times like this, what difference is there between perfectly normal super-tomboy and a dreaded Shuchiin VIP student?

    Some of the students in the class look amused, but they didn't show it too blatantly. You hope that something like this will ease them of even a little bit so that Ryuju can have other friends.

    You look at the door and see Kino and Kose's head poking out, watching what transpired. As everyone too focused with Ryuju, the other people in the class didn't realize their presence.

    Hmmm...

    [ ] Call them
    [ ] Approach them
    [ ] Ignore them
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2020
  12. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.2
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 7 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Ignore them
    No. of Votes: 13
    BB54
    bastur2
    BlueMangoAdea
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    eraserman
    kenmadragon
    Kerrowe
    Kieron
    NewGame+Just
    PandaVenom
    The Brotagonist
    Yuki

    [X] Approach them
    No. of Votes: 3
    TriGayatri
    Flagrais
    SEKALE

    [x] Call them
    No. of Votes: 2
    Renko
    Malason123

    Total No. of Voters: 18

    You decide to ignore them and continue as normal, you're not sure if they notice that you noticed them, nevertheless, that's not important. They disappear as soon as Miyuki stand up and walking back to his class.

    So it was obvious they were stalking him in the end. No wonder they look so excited and curious.

    At the end of the day, you ended up more or less alone again, it's kind of annoying, to be honest, so you decided to walk out around the school, maybe there will be something interesting.

    It's strange before you go to Shuchiin you never have any problem just going home. But maybe it's not that strange after all since at least you have Komachi to look forward to. Part of you also acknowledges that tiring as it may be, socializing with people is one of the many basic needs of human beings.

    Somehow, a familiar face shows up.

    If someone can be described as 'angelic' in appearance, then in your very biased opinion, this person probably fits that description better than even the Goddess Shinomiya. She's visibly taller than the average girls, but also slender. Her silky black hair extends as far as down her waist.

    "Yukinoshita."

    "Good to see you, Hikigaya-kun." She smiles, "Still wandering around like a creepy stalker?"

    "Excuse me, I resent that remark."

    "Forgive me for saying you look like a creepy stalker what with those rotten eyes of yours."

    "Someone with the face of an angel can be so foul-mouthed, I'm shocked." You snide back in response.

    "Is it foul-mouthed to state the facts?"

    "It's improper to twist the facts to fit your extremely biased narrative yes."

    Ah, your lovely neighbor and archnemesis, Yukinoshita Yukino.

    Alright, that's an exaggeration. The truth is that both of you came from Chiba and thus also from outside Shuchiin middle. And to say you don't get along isn't an exaggeration.

    Yukinoshita's parents are of notable status, with her father being representative of Chiba and her family owning the largest construction company in the Prefecture. Of course, in Shuchiin, such a level of wealth and status would be considered the upper average at best.

    But in terms of personal talent and beauty, this person might be just the only girl even remotely close to the perfect Goddess, Shinomiya Kaguya herself. Naturally, along with the fact that she gets along with multiple VIP students, elevated her social status far above the standard.

    "So what are you doing, wandering afterschool?" She finally asks the actual question.

    "I reckon that this semester I have far too much free time." You tell her, "So I'm thinking of looking around the clubs, and if there's nothing then I'd probably pick a part-time job or two."

    "I see, I just happen to be on my way to the Student Council myself." She says as she raises a proposal, "I'm going to establish my own Club."

    "Public Service Club huh?" You look at the title, "Have you asked the teachers for this?"

    "Of course, it's signed by Principal and we already have an advisor ready, so it's a matter of formalizing it to the Student Council proper."

    "What's the club about?"

    "Basically, to help the helpless and to teach men how to fish."

    Weird, but that sounds like her alright.

    "If you're interested feel free to join." She smiles, "You have rotten eyes, but that might be the reason why you can see things other people don't."

    Whoa, that's actually a nice compliment coming from her.

    "Ahem."

    Someone coughs to catch your attention, and you see Shijo and Kashiwagi standing beside Yukinoshita. No joke, you didn't notice them at all until now.

    "Flirting in broad daylight like this is unbecoming of Shuchiin girls, Yukino-san," Shijo warned, though clearly, more like she's jealous.

    To be honest, in terms of physical appearance, this girl isn't really that far behind Yukinoshita and Shinomiya, especially if she let her hair down like now, instead of wearing the stupid-looking twin-tails.

    But her attitude is a little bit...

    "Excuse me, Shijo-san, I might just sue you for that statement." Yukino frowns in response.

    That feels hurt, but you agree. If this constitutes as flirting then anymore closer would be super immoral. Shijo is being unreasonable there.

    "You two are so rude." Kashiwagi chastises them, "We're sorry, Hikigaya-san, but we're in a bit of a hurry."

    "Nah, don't mind."

    "I heard from Karen and Erika, you've helped them escaping their rut. Thank you."

    "I didn't do much though."

    "Hehehe." Kashiwagi's smile is rather weird, it's not condescending or demeaning, but not entirely meaningless.

    One wonders how the hell someone as nice and innocent as Kashiwagi would get along with them. Perhaps she's just wearing a sheep's clothing after all.

    "HEY, CAREFUL!"

    You instantly react to the shout and see a soccer ball flying fast toward the three girls' position. Naturally, you immediately try to intercept, but your brains work hard for the best solution even in that split second of the moment.

    [ ] Catch (Hard)
    [ ] Block
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2020
  13. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.3
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 8 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Catch (Hard)
    No. of Votes: 24
    Lucidum
    BB54
    Blonddude42
    BlueMangoAdea
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    FateBurn
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Flagrais
    Ideas-Guy
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    Kieron
    Lmchakone
    Malason123
    NewGame+Just
    Nnu
    Renko
    rocket501
    roronoa20
    shanagan
    TastyPocki
    The Brotagonist
    Yuki

    [x] Block
    No. of Votes: 4
    bastur2
    Him01
    PandaVenom
    SEKALE

    Total No. of Voters: 28


    You're not one to play soccer, hell, you're hardly one to play a team sport, period. When it comes to sports, you're doing the best on solo. That's about it.

    Even so, you're confident in your own body, you should be fast enough to catch that.

    Bad decision.

    Shuchiin academy is a school full of genius. Just because you're athletic doesn't mean you're ready for anything, there's always someone stronger, faster or more skilled and this striker isn't an exception.

    Many of Shuchiin's stronger club members might very well qualify for the Olympics.

    A kick from a national-level young striker isn't something to take lightly. Even for a tenth of a second, you feel like your finger being crushed from the rotation and pressure, and your grip barely impedes the ball.

    The ball hit you squarely in the face, and you can even smell the iron.

    Your nose is bleeding.

    Still, you managed to keep your dignity somewhat intact as you land on your feet completely unshaken with the ball in front of you. But boy that's hurt, and you're a bit disoriented and weak on the knees.

    You see Yukinoshita practically freezing on the spot, Shijo is in complete shock, while Kashiwagi yelp a little.

    "This is lame." You mutter as you kick the ball back to the source, not wanting to get even more attention while pinching your nose with your left hand. The ball rolled down.

    "Sorry about that!" The unsuspecting soccer club member shouted.

    You should find someplace to sit.

    "Yukino-san, Makki, please go ahead of me!"

    Kashiwagi suddenly grabs your wrist and pulls you toward the school building, much to your confusions.

    You end up in Shuchiin infirmary.

    The Infirmary of Shuchiin is almost decidedly mundane, much like many of Shuchiin facilities, it's built like a normal school but with certain features added.

    For example, the infirmary is staffed by qualified paramedics and has emergency life support equipment available. But otherwise, there's nothing in between.

    "Sensei, please help!"

    "Hmm?" The female doctor looks at you both.

    "Sorry, can I have some crushed ice pack and a towel?" You smile wrily and sit down on one of the beds, "I got a nosebleed."

    "Ah, alright."

    In contrast to the concerned Kashiwagi, the Doctor was completely calm and almost laid back as she picked a bunch of ice from the freezer and crush them.

    You put the bagged ice on the bridge of your nose.

    "It should be fine now, just keep sitting upright with head slightly lowered for ten to fifteen minutes." The Doctor told you, "Breath through the mouth calmly to reduce pressure."

    Actually, you know pretty much all of it but stay quiet.

    "Is there additional pain around the nose? Do you have trouble breathing?"

    The Doctor flashed her penlight to your eye to check your reaction, just in case there's major disorientation.

    "No."

    Your nose isn't broken, and it seems that only anterior blood vessels that's got hurt. You can't feel any blood in the back of your nose or throat.

    "It should be fine, Kashiwagi." You tell the girl, "Yukinoshita probably waiting for you."

    "Is it really fine?"

    "Well, in most cases all you need is to sit still and pinch your nose like this. Maybe some ice too. Moving around is going to make it worse."

    You can tell that Kashiwagi feels increasingly worried and guilty because dragging you to the infirmary isn't helping, if not outright making the situation potentially worse.

    "Look at the upside, now I can have the ice." You cheer her up, if only because you feel rather disturbed. "Go."

    "A-alright then." Kashiwagi backs off, but before she walks out she says, "Sorry, and thank you for saving us."

    Anyone with a sense of human decency would do that, but this being Shuchiin, human decency might be very well a precious commodity.

    "Your girlfriend is so nice, you better treasure her."

    "She's not my girlfriend."

    And because she's so nice, Kashiwagi would do this for anyone. That much, you understand. She didn't owe you and you didn't owe her anything.

    Misunderstanding something that simple, you're not that foolish.

    The blood more or less stopped after 10 minutes, but you keep the ice on for an additional 10. It feels numb but probably better than pain.

    There's no major bruise, that you can tell. And even pushing your nose left and right didn't hurt at all.

    "Not broken or bruised thankfully." You notice as you look at the mirror, "Is there anything I need to do, Sensei?"

    "Don't do any strenuous activity, three days to a week. Make sure not to blow your nose, and keep it clean. If your pain intensifies after you leave, feel free to use this." The Doctor gives you a small tube of pain relief gel. "But don't use it needlessly if you don't feel it."

    "Alright then. Can I have a disposable mask?"

    "Here. Come back here tomorrow so we can check it properly. If it gets worse later today, don't be shy to visit a hospital."

    You wear a mask outside, primarily to protect your nose from dust and other irritants and pollution. You keep your breathing slow and steady so as not to break the blood clotting.

    It seems that you need to rest today, after all. Searching for clubs would be tedious and part-time work is out fo question.

    ...

    It's Tuesday. You find a box of choco balls under your table, you have the inkling who exactly the person who gives it. Or maybe several people, but who knows. It's unlikely to be Yukinoshita, at least.

    Perhaps because it's the first time someone who isn't Komachi or your other family members ever give you a bunch of chocolate, it tastes rather delicious.

    And before you know it, it's Thursday. Your nose more or less healed completely thanks to you putting extra effort to nurse it, and having proper rest.

    What do?

    [ ] Check the clubs.
    [ ] Ask father if there's a job available.
    [ ] Go home anyway (skip to electives).
     
  14. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.4
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    You can always create one!

    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 9 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Check the clubs.
    No. of Votes: 17
    SEKALE
    Caladcholg
    Cuchulin
    Flagrais
    Him01
    Ideas-Guy
    Iroam
    Kerrowe
    Kieron
    Nnu
    PandaVenom
    roronoa20
    shanagan
    TastyPocki
    The Brotagonist
    TriGayatri
    Yuki

    [X] Ask father if there's a job available.
    No. of Votes: 6
    BB54
    bastur2
    Cane Toad
    Eucuron
    kenmadragon
    Lucidum

    Total No. of Voters: 23

    You decide to check the clubs.

    Shuchiin academy had a myriad of clubs, so many that you might just lose count. However, to make it easier you eliminate pretty much all of the team sports and manga appreciation club.

    No really, that particular club is worse than going home club in terms of prestige.

    And again, you hate team sports because it forces you to get along with everyone and work at their pace. As a matter of fact, this may also affect your view on team-reliant solo sports as well, like Kendo, where the arrangement of players is very important in tournaments.

    So that's what, Soccer is out, Volleyball is out, Rugby is out, basketball is out...

    Might as well check the people you already know.

    The first stop is the Journalism club.

    When you knock the door and greeted by a strangely familiar girl in glasses. She looks fairly meek and fragile, but probably just another persona to hide with.

    "My name is Hikigaya Hachiman, class 1-D. I plan to join a club later, so is it fine for me to sightseeing for a while?"

    "Ah?! You're the one." She smiles, "I'm the President of Mass Media club. Erika and Karen are out at the moment, while we're working on the Saizeriya Article they made the other day."

    "I see."

    "Would you mind recheck if our research looks valid?"

    "It's not like I'm some expert of Saizeriya though."

    Well, you actually are. So you read the draft articles and it looks very well designed and the information inside is fairly easy to understand and interesting, while not reliant on bombastic clickbait headlines.

    So look like they're more than just tabloid rags full of gossips after all.

    (Of course, you also look at other articles and THEY are tabloid rags articles, it looks like the President did a lot of vetting out the madness of Kino and Kose.)

    "The hidden gems of Family Restaurant Saizeriya. It's good enough article as it is." You tell her, "I think this one is ready to Publish."

    "You think so? Are you interested in Journalism too?"

    "Not particularly, but I don't hate it, Senpai."

    "I see, you're welcome here anytime you want to visit or join us." She smiles happily.

    The next stop is the Public Service Club.

    "Your nose healed?" Yukinoshita asks the important question the very first moment she welcomes you.

    "It's not hurt much in the first place." The only reason you babysat it was to avoid possible medical complications however small the chance for things to happen, a nosebleed is so common occurrence with guys in sports that Kashiwagi's reaction was unnaturally naive rather.

    "So what exactly Public Service Club actually do?"

    "Feel free to judge by yourself."

    You pick up one of the draft proposals on the table and almost pop out your eyes. Such ambitious proposals are...

    And there are multiple of them?

    Now, it would be hilarious if Yukino proposes something like this in a normal school, but here in Shuchiin? She had all the power, and connections.

    She might be very well can do it, with Shijo and Kashiwagi behind her...

    "Yukinoshita you..." Your lips twitches, "You want to kill Shirogane by a heart attack?"

    "This cruel and unjust world, it would be nice if we can change it, no?" Yukinoshita's smile is strangely seductive, she really is confident.

    "You even write an academic thesis approved by Tokyo U." You sigh, "Your level of greed is way too high, you know?"

    "Is that so? I have the impression that what I have planned isn't impossible."

    "Because it's not impossible, it's horrifyingly real."

    Yukino's plan is simple, worm her way to the hearts of multiple high profile Shuchiin students and change their outlook, especially addressing the prevalent classism, economic inequality, and poor working culture of Japan as a whole.

    Given a few years, Yukino might very well raise an entire cult of Shuchiin students and once they graduate and succeed their parents...

    And this is the short term plan, the long term plan? Even more atrocious.

    "You know that if you succeed, the Shinomiya family will have a target drawn on your back, right?"

    Shinomiya's family isn't completely pristine as many plebeians like to think. As a matter of fact, it might be very well one of the worst Zaibatsu in the entire Japan. Driven by pure greed and heartlessness, they're probably worse than even Yakuza.

    "You're exaggerating, Hikigaya-kun. This long term plan is nothing but my personal power fantasy."

    "You have a weird fetish."

    "At least I'm not a perverted lecher like certain someone here."

    "Oi. I have to tell you that I'm a perfect gentleman." You jokingly respond to her insult, though to be honest you're somewhat drawn to Yukino's unusually long legs.

    Looking at her, she knows that's a possibility that she will suffer for it in the future if the long term plan of her comes into fruition.

    However, she's logical that the more likely outcome is that she might graduate before that happened. By that point, the possibility of the movement to fail is more likely than succeeding.

    This short term plan of her is more likely to be the one that succeeds, and with the full support of the Shijo family? That's almost certainly guaranteed.

    Still, you don't know if you're ready for that sort of gamble.

    "This is an enlightening conversation, please excuse me." You tell her.

    "Feel free to join us anytime." She sends you off with an unusually friendly expression. "And thank you for helping the three of us last Monday."

    "Don't mind."

    ...

    So those two clubs might be a priority pick at the moment. However, that doesn't mean you're set already. You wonder if you should continue to visit other clubs.

    You meet Momo and Miyuki who just finished with Council work, Miyuki says he's going to work today, but there's also the matter of Miyuki and Ryuju having a sleepover at your place for study group activities.

    Because Miyuki always works part-time, about the only time you're together outside school is when you're studying together like that. It's because his family is completely destitute for Japanese standards, barely better off than being homeless.

    You don't know why but Miyuki doesn't have a mother at home, and his father is a freeter who jumps from one part-time job to another, and family income suffers as the result.

    It would be nice to introduce him to a well-paying job so that Miyuki won't have to suffer, but you're just a jobless kid yourself. Maybe if you work hard and get more connections...

    But to work is to lose!

    "What if you just establish your own club?" Momo asks, "I'll join you so you have a backing."

    "Sure, but what kind of club?"

    "Recently I'm interested in mixed martial arts." She licked her lips, spouting out crazy shit as usual. "I helped traditional martial arts club every once a while, but it's boring. The girls are too weak and the technical restriction means I can't really fight the guys all out, that's guaranteed losing on my part and I hate it."

    As expected of Yakuza Princess, she prefers more brutal full-contact sports. As someone whose level of physical strength sits between girls and boys, Ryuju stands in a very awkward place.

    "What about something exciting but also not too dangerous?" You point, "You know, like Survival club or something. You like airsoft right?"

    "That's also nice!"

    Survival Game in Japan mostly focuses on simulated warfare with airsoft guns. However, that's just one aspect. Other aspects of Survival Games include terrain exploration and simulated full-contact, so you can have a 'fight' without injuring yourself.

    So even someone like Ryuju can run wild while restrained from doing actual harm.

    "But who's going to be the President?"

    "You, duh. I'm a member of Student Council now so I can't be the president!"

    Ah.

    List of known club:
    Sports: Judo, Kendo, Gymnastic, Archery, Track & Field
    Cultural: Tabletop, Occult Research, Tea Ceremony


    [ ] Visit Disciplinary Committee (Need Alignment:Order)
    [ ] Visit some sports clubs (Write-in)
    [ ] Visit some cultural clubs (Write-in)
    [ ] Create your own club
    -[ ] MMA Club
    -[ ] Survival Game Club

    -[ ] Astronomy Club (require events)
    [ ] Go home (skip to bonus chapter: Sleepover)
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2020
  15. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.5
    ZeroXSEED

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    Please repeat votes as needed, I feel so fucking dumb but this will never happen again, ever. My bad for writing the update half asleep. I sincerely apologize as a GM

    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 10 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Visit some Sports Club (Archery)
    No. of Votes: 10
    Him01
    BB54
    Caladcholg
    Cuchulin
    Flagrais
    kenmadragon
    Nnu
    Renko
    The Brotagonist
    Yuki

    [x] Create your own club
    No. of Votes: 8
    bastur2
    arsdraconis
    Lucidum
    NewGame+Just
    PandaVenom
    rocket501
    shanagan
    TriGayatri

    -[x] Survival Game Club
    No. of Votes: 4
    bastur2
    PandaVenom
    rocket501
    shanagan

    -[X] MMA Club
    No. of Votes: 4
    NewGame+Just
    arsdraconis
    Lucidum
    TriGayatri

    Total No. of Voters: 18

    You decide to pick one last gamble on the week and visit the Archery club on Friday. As expected, the Kyuudo club to have a large plot and exclusive building to themselves.

    The building is pretty old, this Kyuudo complex can be dated back all the way to 1948, so its origin can be traced to post-war rebuilding.

    You sit down, seiza-style. When you arrive there, you're greeted by a bald but very handsome kyudo instructor. Judging from his appearance, he probably isn't older than 25. He looks like the type that's popular with more orthodox-minded schoolgirls too.

    "You have good posture, Hikigaya-kun." He praises you for whatever reason.

    "Domo." You politely nodded.

    He blinks, "So you're interested in Kyuudo in particular?"

    "To be honest, not particularly so." You answer truthfully, "I was an external student and have difficulties catching up and fitting in in my first semester, however now that I settled in, I have a surprisingly large amount of free time."

    "I see." The instructor smiled gently, "I really like that you're being honest."

    As someone who had not much forte, being honest probably the least you can do in this situation. Instead, you try to look at him and see if he's judging you for it.

    He didn't, his eyes so serene and clear, like that of flowing water. It's the eyes of someone who simply cannot be lied to. Like the eyes of a Buddha.

    "Are you nervous and agitated?" He asks again, "Are you trying to fill that emptiness in your heart with Kyudo."

    "I'm addicted." You smile in defeat, "And I want to see if Kyudo has the cure."

    "Excellent." He claps his hands, excited. Slowly, he pushes his hands on the floor as he stand-up. "Come on, we need to have you change into Hakama first."

    And so you changed into traditional Kyudo Hakama, which has a black bottom and white top.

    "...should I expose my shoulder?"

    "We're not at that stage yet."

    "Ah." You nod, "It might take months until I start shooting for real."

    "Not necessarily, I'm well aware of the circumstances surrounding Shuchiin and it's students." The instructor says, "You see, every Shuchiin students are genius of some sort, and you're not an exception."

    Really?

    "People might say, if everyone is a genius then no one is... but I don't believe that's the case." He laughs, "It means the degree of advancement is always faster than average people, but the variance in learning speed is even greater between individuals."

    "In other words, we're not going to set any specific time for the student to advance on the next step. Rather, we do it as soon as the student prove they're ready to advance."

    "I see."

    Honestly, you're doubtful that you can advance that fast.

    The instructor gives you a strange stick with a rubber tied to it. You recognize it as a training bow.

    "Here, try to pull as far as you can with this pose." The instructor makes a shooting pose while holding the same item as you are.

    You stretch it until your right arm completely folded while your left hand stretched out. It takes some effort, but not unreasonably so.

    "You have the arms strength needed." The instructor says, "Let's move the next step."

    "Already?" You're actually surprised.

    "Most beginner can't pull that rubber bow into full draw position." He smiles widely, "They take a few weeks of repeating the same movement until they can build enough strength."

    Ah, the advantage of athleticism.

    "We'll move to shaho-hassetsu." Thus read as eight stages of shooting. "Not much to remember, but a lot to master. This is the core of Kyudo, as long as you master this, the rest will be so much easier."

    The first step is to take a few careful steps forward until you're in shooting position, and then spread your legs with your feet forming roughly 60 degrees outward. This step is known as Ashibumi. The second steps are straightening of the torso and recommended to take a breath in. This step is called Dozukuri.

    The third part is to ready the bow in front of you while regulating breathing pace. This part thus is known as Yugamae. And so on.

    You follow all the eight-step awkwardly and stiffly, and you make a lot of mistakes. Nevertheless, the instructor patiently teaches you the proper way, again, again and again.

    And before you know it, one hour had passed.

    "This is what we call hammering the basic." The instruction stops you, "We should stop today, or else you'll strain your muscles."

    It's true that while you warm-up before the practice, your right shoulder is a bit sore.

    And so you change back into your uniform.

    "How's your experience?"

    "Complicated." You answer him, "It seems so simple looking, yet so profoundly difficult to do."

    "But the fact that you skip several weeks of training is good." He praises you, "It means you don't need to build a stronger foundation, but rather you need to build the support pillars forming the shape of Kyudo."

    ...

    "Kyudo huh." Miyuki remarks when the three of you sat around the table, studying, "Shinomiya didn't attend today because she's active in the council."

    So that's why she's not present during your visit.

    "In my opinion, you shouldn' join Kyudo." Ryuju lightly remarks, "It's an extremely asymmetrical sport, your body evolve with it. Once you start, this process will continue until you stop. The longer you continue, the more drastic it changes."

    For someone who obsessed with balanced development, Ryuju seems to find that Kyudo's very methodical approach unfitting, unlike other martial arts or track and field.

    So if you join the Kyudo club, it's likely that Ryuju won't follow and join as well.

    "What about you, Shirogane? Are you sure you can't join any club at all?" She asks him.

    "Well no, I need to work after all." Miyuki sighs.

    All that's hard work and for what, 100K yen a month? It's not small money for average high school students, but compared to time invested? Surely he can earn more?

    "Well, unless I find something more interesting I gotta stick to my guns." Ryuju also confirms, "None of the current existing clubs worth joining for me. But if you're there it might be more bearable."

    Hmm, so it was like that.

    [ ] Join Archery club
    [ ] Join Mass Media club
    [ ] Join Service Club (Need Alignment:Order)
    [ ] Create your own club
    -[ ] MMA Club
    -[ ] Survival Game Club
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
  16. Threadmarks: Chapter 3
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    "The future refuse to change"
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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 12 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Create your own Club
    No. of Votes: 10
    Lmchakone
    bastur2
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    Fieryfoxpaws
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    knyght
    Lucidum
    Observed

    -[X] Survival Game Club
    No. of Votes: 10
    Lmchakone
    bastur2
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    Fieryfoxpaws
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    knyght
    Lucidum
    Observed

    [X] Join Mass Media club
    No. of Votes: 9
    TriGayatri
    BB54
    Flagrais
    Iroam
    Nnu
    Rain Sennin
    shanagan
    TastyPocki
    The Brotagonist

    [X] Join Tabletop Game Club
    No. of Votes: 2
    Peddy-kun
    Cuchulin

    Total No. of Voters: 21


    "Let's create the Survival game club." You decide, "As for paperwork, that's easily done. The problem is equipment, airsoft equipment is very expensive unless you go for the bottom rung."

    "Leave that to me. I have surplus extra stuff that I don't know what to do with." Ryuju says, grinning. "I have a lot of toys that I buy in bulk when I was like fourteen. They should be more than enough for noobs, so I'm going to donate it for the club to use."

    "Sounds expensive, are you alright with that." Miyuki furrows his eyebrows.

    "Nah, they're like 15-20K Yen at most." Ryuju waves her hands, her face looks rather tired. "Actually I'm thinking of getting rid of them eventually since they need battery replacement anyway, but dumping them in the trash feel like a waste."

    Makes sense, 20K might seems cheap for what they are, but still no peanuts even for a rich girl.

    "So we need a battery replacement for them." You write in a separate note, "I'll be sure to finish the club creation proposal this week, meanwhile we also need to recruit members."

    "Leave that to me." Ryuju grins evilly.

    "For the record, no extortion and blackmail, okay?" You ask her sincerely, "I want strictly voluntary members."

    She widens her eyes in surprise, figures she will think of that.

    "I'll help you to finish that proposal then." Miyuki offers, "I have not much to do this weekend, besides you should hurry. We only have a week left until the Shuchiin sports festival."

    "Ah, crap." You mutter in response.

    You just remember now that in the fourth week of October, there will be a sports festival, meaning next week you're will be busy preparing for class and schoolwide events.

    "What's the minimum memberships for club creation again? Three?" Ryuju asks.

    "Three is minimum, as long as you have three members, you can be assigned a small budget. The larger the memberships, the easier to justify a larger budget." Miyuki explains, "So club funding will be a little difficult on you at the start. This isn't something I can help with."

    "Oh but there's something you can help." Ryuju smiles.

    Miyuki twitches and back away, "I don't like that smile."

    "You can register as our ghost member." Ryuju proposes, "We can use Athletic festival as a chance to advertise our club, if we get additional members right away, you can use student council duty as an excuse to quit."

    Miyuki remains skeptical even then, "Is survival game even that marketable?"

    "You'd be surprised." She winks.

    Ryuju looks unusually confident, and you know that while her mindset can be freaky, she's not dumb and know what she's doing. Especially if she actually put any energy.

    Plus she looks so happy, happier than you usually see her, so you can't really take back your words. You look at Miyuki pleadingly and he also looks rather disturbed by Ryuju's unusual excitement, if this continues then the study group will be a total mess.

    "Alright, alright, I'll be placeholder members until you get more. But like I said, I can't really stay active in the club." Miyuki relents and agrees. "Now let's focus on our study shall we?"

    You wonder if you can help Miyuki in some way, he really needs a well-paying job more than you do.

    In terms of the ability to comprehend lessons, Miyuki actually lags behind you and Ryuju. As such, he always needs to put 108% in effort and invest much of his free time studying.

    Studying alone for him might be a more efficient use of time, but even Miyuki can hit a snag, that's where you and Ryuju's presence can be handy.

    Something like this must be done more often, since without someone to ask and clarify, Miyuki always brute force through problems and it's kind of worrying. His pride is too high and you and Ryuju are few people he's willing to show his weakness to.

    "Now that's a quality study." He shouts.

    Miyuki, you and Momo slap the workbook hard when you finish with them.

    He looked at the clock on the wall, "And it's only 10.30 PM, record time I'd say."

    As you understand Miyuki normally studies until midnight and then sleeps for what, like four hours?

    "At this rate, you might be better off moving in." Ryuju remarks.

    "Speaking of which, I hear the rumors." Ryuju mumbles, "So you finally score with Shinomiya?"

    "Pffft, what are you even talking about?" Miyuki cackles maniacally.

    "Yeah, it's pervasive gossips that spread ever since the election." You confirm, "The mass media club even snoop on me."

    "Freaking vultures, should I get rid of them?" Ryuju asks lightly, with an annoyed face.

    "Nah, I can handle them just fine." You tell her, "Besides at least they're being honest."

    "Well, I guess if she asks me out, I might just consider it." He haughtily replies... while averting his eye away.

    "Bullshit." Ryuju and you both call out his bluff.

    "What do you mean 'bullshit', exactly?"

    "Coming from someone who looks like he would cry when Shinomiya didn't pay attention to him, that's the least convincing part of this argument." Ryuju harshly points out.

    As you understand, the main reason Miyuki start to study really, really hard is because he wants to build a strong image, strong enough to face Shinomiya Kaguya. And around the same time, he starts working with the student council with Momo working as Treasurer, and Miyuki as General Affairs.

    Considering you also start to change a month ago after you meet her, that means Ryuju singlehandedly turned two meek boys into real men that can stand up to Shuchiin's elites.

    Okay, that sounds lewd.

    "Ah yeah, that's true." You also nod.

    "You two just don't understand." Miyuki hiss, "I just want my existence to be acknowledged, that's all."

    "If it's about existence, I'm pretty sure Shinomiya acknowledge you both ever since that day."

    "That's not enough." Miyuki leaves the living room, "I'm going to wash my face."

    "Stubborn piece of shit!" Ryuju swears quietly.

    "Well, you know how Miyuki is." You shrug.

    More than just being acknowledged, Miyuki wants Shinomiya to see him as an equal or even superior existence, and that's why he will bull through any obstacles in front of him.

    You wonder if you should stop him from this futile struggle. But maybe it's for the best for him to have a goal to reach, no matter how impossible.

    Dream betrays many, but hard works betray none. Someday, his hard work will surely pay him off.

    CHAPTER 3

    It's time for another session of electives. You can't wait to meet the crazy girls of mass media club once again.

    NOT!

    You didn't really hate them per se, as a matter of fact, you're humored by their enthusiasm and curiosity. But you don't have much time to deal with their shenanigans at the moment.

    You need to complete the club proposal by the weekend, thankfully Miyuki says he will help but you can't be too reliant on him.

    You already finished the draft which means at least much of the content of the proposal already assembled. All that's left would be smoothing out the edges and editing.

    You can just ask them for help, but you don't want to get indebted. It's a death sentence to be indebted to another club right in the process of club formation.

    That way lies slavery and future resentment.

    "Today's topic is comparing the style of mass media in Japan and seeing the pattern."

    You pay close attention to the lectures while occasionally throwing questions. Compared to other electives, Journalism seems to be closer to the actual class than freeform learning in calligraphy, art, or music.

    It was so formal, even without assignment, grading or exam involved. So it feels like an additional class rather than a school-enforced time to relax and unwind.

    You hear the four usual best friends whispering about right behind you as if they want to talk about something. They seem to be awfully concerned about something.

    [ ] Ask them what's the problem
    [ ] Listen carefully (May come off as suspicious)
    [ ] Ignore
     
  17. Threadmarks: Chapter 3.1
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 13 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Ignore
    No. of Votes: 19
    Lucidum
    Achagoya0072
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CatDog
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Ganglia
    inlurkshadow
    Iroam
    kenmadragon
    Kieron
    knyght
    Lmchakone
    Observed
    PandaVenom
    shanagan
    slime jello
    StrikerFromPallet
    The Brotagonist

    [X] Listen carefully (May come off as suspicious)
    No. of Votes: 11
    Ideas-Guy
    BB54
    BlueMangoAdea
    burn3287
    CMY187
    Kerrowe
    Learned Knave
    Nnu
    rocket501
    ShadowStrykerX
    TriGayatri

    [X ] Ask them what's the problem
    No. of Votes: 1
    Cuchulin

    [X] Start eating and ignore
    No. of Votes: 1
    Peddy-kun

    Total No. of Voters: 32

    You shove a pair of earphones in to block out the noise and ignore the increasingly rambunctious girls behind you, seemingly closing in without a care.

    You really don't want to get involved.

    Until someone pokes your shoulder to get attention. You still ignore them.

    Poke.

    "W-what is it?" You ask with annoyance and a hint of embarrassment. Back in junior high, there's no way any girl would want to touch you like that. It's honestly kind of cute.

    "Hikigaya-san, do you have time after school?" Kino asks with enthusiasm on her face.

    You raise one eyebrow in response, "...That depends, what do you need?"

    You plan to work with Miyuki and Ryuju over the club proposal after they're done with the student council, which leaves roughly two to three hours left after school for you to wait. While that's true it doesn't mean you have a lot of free time to waste on inane shit, especially over a bunch of girls' whims.

    By saying that depends, you imply that you can spare some time and thought if it was something important. However, if it's something not important, you're willing to just dismiss the invitation, perhaps a little rude to boot.

    But this is just how you are, you don't like putting a pretense and prefer to go straight to the point.

    "I was wondering if you can introduce us more of these restaurant chain-things." Kose points, "The article about Saize last week was very popular."

    Ah.

    Shuchiin students really are sheltered, aren't they? When they see articles about Saize, they probably drown in curiosity and want to try, only to be disappointed if the reality isn't up to the hype.

    That or they just want to taste what peasant food like, and once they go, either they regularly come or they stop.

    "Ahhh, it's so sad that you'll have to pick up for low hanging fruit to pick up reader base now. Shame." Shijo comment from behind.

    "What?" Kino pops a vein or two in response, "As an aspiring journalist, wanting to get closer to society. What's wrong with that?"

    "Your approach is too superficial." Shijo points smugly.

    "I prefer the term broadened horizon." Kino insists.

    You look at Kose and Kashiwagi in confusion and both of them squirm in response, clearly just resigned to the fact that this kind of argument is common among friends like these.

    They sure are passionate girls, well, aside from Kashiwagi perhaps. Not only she looks the most distressed, she probably the stabilizing force in the group too.

    You remember that Shijo and Kashiwagi is part of Yukinoshita's clique in this school, though they're also friends with the journalism club duo.

    It's kind of scary to think.

    Still, perhaps because of that reason, Shijo can flaunt herself so much like this. Not that she did not deserve to do that, she had every right to do that.

    Even so...

    "You say that but what have you ever done to society?" You creepily grins and asks, "Just riding on Yukinoshita's coattail?"

    Shijo froze for a moment, then her pale face turned bright red.

    "What's that supposed to mean?"

    "Yukinoshita showed me everything." You tell her, "So when it will start?"

    "Tch." Shijo bit her lip, "Sports festival, there will be a meeting with donors in the evening after the events."

    "I see, wish you the best of luck. For your club I mean." You honestly tell her without meaning anything, but you notice Kashiwagi get her face flushed for whatever reason.

    "Hmmph, luck has nothing to do with anything." Shijo flicks her twin tails again, clearly agitated by your dismissive response.

    "Well coming back to our question before, do you mind if you help us with the reporting again?" Kino begs, "Please, this will be the last time."

    "About that-"

    Your phone rang which shows Ryuju's contact on the LINE, and you immediately open it.

    "What is it, Ryuju?"

    "[Shirogane negotiated ahead with Principal for the club formation and it's already accepted almost instantly, the proposal can follow later and unless we fuck up something fierce there shouldn't be any issues with the content. That said, I already ask people at home to deliver the donated equipment, so I hope you don't mind tidying up."

    "What the hell did you mean with tidying up?"

    "[Helicopter will be here in a few minutes, bye.]"

    And so she closes the call, leaving you somewhat miffed.

    "What am I, President or pack mule?"

    Hearing a helicopter flying over the school, you already know it's going to suck. Ryuju Momo is a lot of things, but she's not subtle by any means.

    This is why you always consider that youth is a mistake.

    As the students' attention fixated on the landing helicopter, you hurriedly walk toward it and notice two people unloading several gun cases out of the helicopter.

    With the way they handle them, you already feeling ill. Could it be that Ryuju donates...

    "Ah, Hikigaya-dono." One of them said, a young Yakuza with a scar down his chin, "We came to deliver them, should we help to carry them to your clubroom?"

    "How about no, you're getting a lot of attention as it is." You jibe at them in response, "Besides Principal hasn't told me which room is available at the moment."

    "Is it alright? They're one of the heavier models."

    "Figures." You hum as you open a long gun case and found a black metal-bodied, wood-clad Kalashnikov rifle inside. "It's the CYMAs..."

    "We have a couple of assault rifles, submachine guns and a pair of pistols. We've cleaned and oiled the guns, all the batteries have been replaced with new ones too."

    "Hey hey hey we just have three-member at the moment and one of them is a ghost, what the heck?"

    "Well it's Young Miss order, so please excuse us."

    And so the helicopter took off abruptly.

    Could it be that Momo just wants an excuse to dump these guns, cramping her room or something? There must be at least, ten gun cases in total. If you didn't remember wrong, the total worth of these guns with cases and supplies should be in the excess of 300.000 yen!

    But to be honest, for a Shuchiin club this amount of expenses is not entirely unexpected, and with this donation, that means you don't have to grovel too much on club budget in the future.

    "Hmm, hmm, Hikigaya-kun, it's not fine to cause public disturbances like this before your club even officially formed."

    [​IMG]

    Adolphe Pescarolo is Principal of Shuchiin Academy High, he's a mysterious Frenchman with parted hair, mustache, and thick goatee. Sometimes he comes off as undisciplined and laid back, but in terms of bureaucracy, no one can match him.

    "On behalf of Ryuju-san, I shall apologize." You bowed deeply.

    "Ryuju Momo hmm, I could say she's relatively restrained these days, I wonder why." He winks at you, "You even rope her into making her own club, I suppose I can let it this slide this time."

    Ah.

    It was true that, for all the problems you caused, you're very helpful in reining Momo's most unpredictable, whimsical behaviors. In the first place, that's the purpose of having a club in the first place.

    "Hikigaya-san, what are you doing?" the four girls managed to catch up at last.

    "Are those... guns?" Kino curiously opens a case... and screams when she notices that there are metal guns inside. "AAAH! ARE YOU GOING TO ASSASSINATE SOMEONE?"

    "Assassinate my tender ass, they're toys." You grab a bag of plastic BB bullets. "That said, airsoft guns made of real metal and wood really is unusual."

    "Are you sure it's not illegal, Hikigaya-kun?" The principal drops a sweat in panic when he lifts one he's surprised. "It weights like the real thing, too."

    "Yeah, it's near impossible to modify them into real guns without blowing them apart, so they're fine." You deliberately ignore the fact that Principal KNOWS how it feels to lift a real gun, you really don't want to know where that knowledge comes from.

    "Ugh, are you going to pretend soldier and go tryhard on everything?" Shijo throws her hands, "What are you, military maniac?"

    "Speak with human language please," Kino asked.

    "It's technically survival club, but we haven't decided how far we're stretching the term 'survival', for all we know it might just end up a shooting club." You tell them earnestly, "So far we have three members, including Ryuju and President Shirogane."

    "PRESIDENT SHIROGANE JOINED?" Kino almost jumps when she hears the prospect.

    Well technically as a ghost member but still...

    "And I'll be a temporary club advisor until we can find a permanent one." The Principal laughed ominously, it makes sense in hindsight, how many teachers are willing to deal with #1 problem children of Shuchiin?

    And it means that
    1. The Principal can directly oversee the new club to prevent us from causing trouble
    2. He had excuses to slack off


    "I can't stand this anymore." Shijo says in disgust, "Please excuse me, I'll have something to talk with Yukino-san."

    Whoa, looks like she's afraid of you now.

    Change of relationship:
    Shijo Maki: Stranger -> Cautious


    "E-eh?" Kashiwagi looks somewhat disappointed by the response, but it's clear that she want to go after her later. "Ah, Hikigaya-san, are you... close with Yukino-san?"

    "Hardly, we're on talking terms though." You tell her.

    "Umm, it's just that I'm surprised Yukino-san seems to trust you so much to even share our club plan, besides..."

    Besides...?

    "Ah, nothing, let's share a line or something. Or maybe e-mail..."

    Ah, Deja vu. You're not sure if girls these days are too liberated, or just that they didn't see you as a threat. Still, there's absolutely NO reason why you should refuse this kind of chance. It won't come twice.

    Kino twiddle her fingers again, hesitating but still insistent. "Hikigaya-san, what about the restaurant review-"

    "Don't you see that I have entire armory worth of guns to move around?" You incredulously ask them as you present the mountain of gun cases near the spot the Helicopter landed before.

    "Ah, the restaurant review. I just happen to like that article too." The Principal said, "Very enlightening, why don't you help them again, Hikigaya-kun?"

    He winks again. It honestly creeps you out.

    If you help again, it's probably going to increase your rep at school, and particularly impression with the Principal as well.

    "We can help you move some of these... uh, briefcases." Kose offers, "I do manual labor at home all the time, so I'm stronger than I look."

    Hmm, so Kose at least seems to be reasonable enough with the obvious bribe. Plus she does look like she can lift a thing or two.

    "Umm, I can still carry the leftover." Kino looks really, really desperate too, though she looks somewhat frail in comparison.

    [ ] Share E-mail address
    [ ] Exchange LINE contact
    s

    [ ] Accept the request in exchange for their offer
    [ ] Accept the request but reject their offer
    [ ] Reject the request
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  18. Threadmarks: Chapter 3.2
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 15 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Accept the request in exchange for their offer
    No. of Votes: 13
    NewGame+Just
    BooksRFme
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    Cuchulin
    DamnedAeons 187
    drake_azathoth
    kenmadragon
    Lector312
    Lmchakone
    Lucidum
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri

    [X] Share E-mail address
    No. of Votes: 9
    TriGayatri
    BooksRFme
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    DamnedAeons 187
    kenmadragon
    Lmchakone
    Lucidum
    ShadowStrykerX

    [X] Exchange LINE contacts
    No. of Votes: 5
    NewGame+Just
    CloLag01
    drake_azathoth
    Lector312
    ScarletCloud

    [X] Accept the request but reject their offer
    No. of Votes: 2
    ShadowStrykerX
    Him01

    Total No. of Voters: 15
    You decide to share your e-mail address with Kashiwagi, which should be a more or less normal approach to things. You're not hopeful that it will go anywhere, though the sheer volume of e-mail traded with Kino and Kose was more than expected.

    No, you didn't deliberately save their goodnight messages or anything. Not at all! Reminding yourself that makes your face blush and cringe.

    "Well then, can you help me carry the lighter ones? I'll bring you to the best family restaurant chain later." You check the content of the cases and separate them in terms of weights, and then hand out the lightest one to the girls.

    Kose shows off her strength by carrying two rifle cases, albeit the one with lighter rifles. You picked the two heaviest cases and shoulder carry them, while Kashiwagi and Kino carry two small cases each.

    Which left the Principal with two cases.

    "Eugh, it weighs more than a laptop," Kino mutters.

    "It certainly is a little heavy." The Principal remarked, "Wouldn't metal model be somewhat expensive?"

    "On the contrary, the CYMA base model is pretty cheap, in line with Japanese and American airsoft guns of similar performance. The advantages of metal guns are, well, they simply don't break from minor to moderate accidents." You tell him, "Just like real firearms they hold up to abuse well so it's perfect for clumsy newbies."

    The main problem with CYMA is poor quality bullet magazines and batteries, which can be replaced -and as you can tell, already replaced- with the Japanese's Tokyo Marui parts. But the details aren't important.

    "Besides of which the weight makes for good exercising tools." You grin manically, "Fitness and discipline are important in Sabage after all."

    "Indeed, Shirogane-kun also said the same thing." The Principal nodded, "It's the reason why the club is approved instantly."

    By incorporating general fitness into club activity, you want to change the club image from rowdy and chaotic into something more... disciplined and useful.

    The Principal probably wants to make sure it wasn't an empty talk, thus he decided to be a temporary club advisor.

    "Still it's unfortunate that the club formations squeezed right before the Shuchiin Athletic festival." The Principal clicked his tongue, "You're going to be super busy I reckon."

    One of the most important events in the Shuchiin athletic festival is the Club Relay race, where every club in Shuchiin sent their representative in the relay race. You're kind of lucky to have Ryuju and Miyuki, as both of them are very, very fast.

    You have an absolute upper hand in that regard, so assuming no one makes a mistake it would be a nice advertisement for the club.

    "That's fine, it's not as if I can leave everything to Miyuki and Ryuju, and I will become the club President after all." You humbly assure him.

    "Eh, so Hikigaya-san will be Club president then." Kashiwagi brightened her eyes.

    "Umm... Well, two out of three members are part of the Student council and not eligible for the presidency. So I'm just there because no one else is available." You tell her earnestly.

    Being a Club President is a prestige, but it also comes with great responsibilities. This is especially true in the budget fight, or rather, biannual meetings between Presidents and Student Council representative.

    But you don't have to worry about that for now.

    The main problem still recruitment, while Sabage club would have greater prestige than cultural clubs, it's still no match compared to more mainstream sports and martial arts clubs.

    And this club formed in the middle of a year, chances of getting new member straight away is very slim.

    The assigned club room is located in the old school building of Shuchiin high, pretty much similar to most high-schools in Japan with at least a few decades of history. At present, the club room was empty, with a dirty whiteboard on the front and a bunch of chairs and tables in the back still piled up neatly.

    "Keh, it's a bit dusty here." You mutter, "I'll have to clean this up when I'm done with the proposal later."

    "Where should we put them?" Kose asks.

    "Please just pile them in the furthest corner, I'll cover them with a tarp." The Principal tells her.

    Job has been done, and you still have quite a bit of time until the other members are done with the Student Council. Guess it's time to deal with girls and their meals.

    "Well then please excuse me."

    "Anyway, thanks for the help, Kashiwagi."

    Kashiwagi has no obligation to help you at all but she did, maybe it's only to lessen the burden of her friends. Indeed, as expected of a nice girl, she replies to you with an innocent, happy smile. "It's no problem, Hikigaya-san."

    No girls in Shuchiin would want to smile like that at you.

    "Hey hey, where're our thanks?" Kose looks rather disappointed, but you have no intention of honoring her whining.

    "Let's go to the next restaurant then." You smile back at her, rather creepily too, "That's how it works right?"

    ...

    "Then the answer is Yayoiken."

    "Yayoiken?"

    From the outside, the store looked pretty much like any other modern shops, however, once they walked inside, they're greeted by simple yet beautiful traditional Japanese interior.

    "Woah, so it's a Japanese traditional restaurant?" Kino blinks in surprise.

    "Yayoiken isn't quite as heralded as Ootoya, but it's still quite a popular place for average families and persons to walk in." You tell them, "Most menus in this restaurant are Japanese style full meal, so I hope you come here with an empty stomach."

    You can tell that Kino already wants to leave...

    "Oh Come on Karen, are you going to use dieting as an excuse?" Kose goads her. "Besides what even you're eating at lunch today?"

    "A pack mule like you wouldn't understand." Kino glares in anger, "The sheer amount of effort average girl needs to put on to stay slim and healthy."

    "Who are you calling pack mule." Kose squeezes Kino's cheeks, "Besides in what way I'm not considered average girl? Right, Hikigaya-san?"

    Kose definitely stronger and more fit than average girls, but you probably wouldn't notice that in her uniform like this.

    "Well yeah, I don't see any difference." You answer truthfully. "You look rather thin, Kino."

    If anything, it's more like Kino Karen being slimmer than average, she had a similar build to Yukinoshita rather, though Yukinoshita is much taller than average. Because of typical Japanese social values and unrealistic body expectations of teenagers, the average Shuchiin girls can be rather weedy.

    Extremely athletic girls with very pronounced, lean but well-toned bodies like Shinomiya or Ryuju are the exception, not the norm.

    "Oh." Kino blush in response, "Is that so?"

    "My words might not represent the average boy's opinion." You clarify and backtrack, not wanting to look like you're hitting on her.

    Kose rolls her eyes aside and mutter, "Coward."

    "I resemble that remark hey!" You tell her off.

    And so you order your food and start the discussion pertaining Yayoiken as a franchise, as well ahs the quality of food and whatnot. Unlike Saizeriya, Yayoiken doesn't quite have a centralized food processing facility and each branch thus produce their own batches.

    That's why the price of food is way more than Saize but still cheaper than the two girls expect.

    "They use the Miso brand from my family's company I see." Kose remarks when she tasted her miso-boiled mackerel. "They sure know what to choose."

    "Well yeah, do you think they can afford homemade miso?" You incredulously asks.

    To make miso, it takes anywhere from 6 months to 1 year worth of fermentation time. These days, only the hardcore Japanese restaurant franchise would utilize them. Factory Miso simply far easier, and that's how Kose family's company grew tremendously as today.

    "Ugh, I don't think I can eat dinner today," Kino complains as the three of you finish everything.

    "You say that but I bet you'll eat cake again later." Kose points at her.

    "Still we got a lot of material and photos for the article today, it's thanks to you, Hikigaya-san." Kino smiles sweetly at you and makes you a bit embarrassed.

    Kino really is beautiful, not the most beautiful girl in Shuchiin perhaps, but compared to the 11 peasants you confess to in middle school... she's leagues ahead of them.

    All that time spent studying like a hermit gives a great payoff.

    "Nah." You awkwardly look away, "It's fine, I come here often anyway."

    Well, not with other people anyway. You come here very often especially when you're not in the best mood to cook at home. These days you avoid eating prepackaged convenience store bento. Either you cook, or you eat in a family restaurant.

    "We should come here more often." Kose says ambiguously.

    Is there even a point of coming back here for you girls anyway? Asking that would be rude though. And so you return back to school, and then go to your home with Miyuki and Ryuju.

    ...

    It's nighttime when the proposal finally finished, and it's only possible with the strength of three people. Momo excused herself ahead as her family car came, while Miyuki left with his bike.

    Kashiwagi sent her first email, saying good evening and talking about cooling weather. It's a bit weird, to be honest. Still, Kashiwagi sent the first text, so you should reply in kind.

    Oddly enough, it turned into an e-mail chain that gets really, really confusing to read after a while. This might legit be the longest text conversation you have with a girl, even if the topic is somewhat off.

    Both of you are talking about society and the problems in it, to be honest, the conversation was rather pretentious. However, you have the odd feeling that Kashiwagi took a lot of these kinds of information from Yukinoshita. And furthermore, most of the conversation seems to be related to future Public Service's club activities that you see from Yukinoshita's proposals.

    Though Kashiwagi was way, way more polite in her delivery. Nevertheless, Kashiwagi Nagisa might be a rather curious type of girl despite her innocent and kind appearance.

    [Talking with e-mail is a bit hard huh.] Was one of her last messages.

    ?

    Well, an e-mail isn't designed to hold back and forth conversations like this. That's how messaging platforms like LINE, Whatsapp and Facebook proliferate in the first place, they evolved from the older online chat program.

    [Well, either way, see you tomorrow, Hikigaya-san.]

    See you tomorrow, indeed.

    However a new e-mail came from a sender that you didn't recognize, and the e-mail introduced itself as coming from none other than Newspaper Club President.

    It was an informal proposal, the Newspaper club is willing to work with you to advertise the Survival Game club if you want, especially with poster design. They didn't ask anything in return, but you know there is a catch.

    Either you'll owe them, or they reap indirect benefits. Most probably, they probably want to focus on Miyuki's nominal membership in the club. Miyuki joining a club, especially newly established club, would definitely make a good headline, after all this time being stubborn and prefer to focus on part-time work and student council.

    That seems to be the most plausible reasoning at least.

    In the end, the authority is left in your hand as a club president. Still, talking with others beforehand isn't a bad idea either.

    [ ] Accept
    [ ] Decline
    [ ] Discuss it with Miyuki and Ryuju tomorrow at lunch
     
  19. Threadmarks: Chapter 3.3
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 16 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Discuss it with Miyuki and Ryuju tomorrow at lunch
    No. of Votes: 12
    Lector312
    Achagoya0072
    BB54
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    DamnedAeons 187
    Fieryfoxpaws
    Him01
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri

    Total No. of Voters: 12

    You decide it's best to postpone any decision and talk with Miyuki and Ryuju about it tomorrow, and rather than through message, it has to be face to face. President or not, this is a small club and your authority is nominal at best.

    No reason to make a decision hastily either, as you still have to submit the proposal forth even as a formality.

    So come the time for lunch and you discuss everything with Miyuki and Ryuju during the usual ritual of shared lunchtime.

    "It's hardly unexpected." Momo speaks out, "Club politics in this school is serious business, smaller clubs are oppressed by default unless they choose total isolation and ignored by the big fishes. As for mass Media club, they don't have VIP member to shield them, whereas this club has me and Shirogane."

    "Indeed." Miyuki agrees with her, "What they need isn't mere attention, they also want protection."

    So Mass media club want us to be their shield. Interesting.

    In the past, you would condemn it as cowardice, but after spending one semester in this school... It's important to attain power, for the sake of survival.

    The reason why you were bullied in the past was that you're powerless too. Rejecting the position in the Student council exposes you to that harm, once again. By acting as President of a new club, you have both Miyuki and Ryuju behind your back. The Mass media club has none of that privilege.

    Ah, Yukinoshita also probably in a similar position, only... she's ambitious, far more ambitious, but also knows not to be greedy. Public Service club likely will become one of the most powerful clubs in the few months to come.

    From a logical perspective, the easiest way is to remain hidden and don't attract too much attention. In the first place, you only built this club to be timewaster, and Miyuki flat out said he can't be an active member, to begin with...

    Even so...

    "What, are we going to chicken out? Of course, I'll accept." Ryuju scoffs and slams the table.

    "After going this far, walking back isn't an option." Miyuki sharpens his sleep-deprived eyes and combs his hair in the most arrogant pose possible. "I don't mind being in the spotlight."

    That bastard just wants to show off, you know, but you can't help but feel a sense of amusement. Shirogane Miyuki is a hard-working person, whose bloody effort can match his galactic ego.

    "Then I guess we'll accept it." You smugly smile as you pull out your smartphone and reply to the Mass Media club President, "Then it's time to talk about details."

    "Good thing, then let's fetch the bitches." Ryuju smile ominously and then disappears from your sight.

    Literally.

    "Gah!"

    "Iya! Please don't kill me!"

    When you and Miyuki look at the door, you see Ryuju caught both Kino and Kose at the same time, and then drag them inside your class by hooking them with her arm.

    "What the hell are you doing?" You ask with a deadpan voice, and then slap the back of Ryuju's head with a slipper, hard enough to make her gasp and release them.

    Indeed, you're basically conditioned to act as moral restraint for this particular Yakuza Princess, to stop her whenever she's out of line.

    "Sorry about that, she's a bit touchy and bad with people." You apologize on behalf of Ryuju.

    "Ahh, that's fine, that's fine." Kino looks so pale she almost anemic, "It's our fault for stalking... no, I mean watching you from a distance secretly."

    That's stalking though.

    "Acha, Ryuju-sama is really strong." Kose tries to feel her neck, noticing there's no injury. "Sorry, I should have warned her."

    Kose only obsessed with Kaguya, so she had no reason to fawn over Miyuki. Kino, in contrast, is basically out of breath at the moment.

    "Nevermind about that." Miyuki put his cool Presidential face and look at them seriously, "We'll agree with the proposal, so what do you have in mind?"

    ...

    After school, the three of you start cleaning the club room. Spoiled as they may, Shuchiin students still do chores like this from time to time, as it's part of disciplinary education. The main school building has cleaners and janitors, but the club room is an entirely different issue.

    "Speaking of which where does the vacuum robot come from?" Miyuki asks when a Roomba-like large contraption cleans the floor of the clubroom, freeing you from the lion share of cleaning.

    "I borrow it from the robot club." Ryuju replies, "The memberships are pretty huge but they're all so spineless, even with the backing of teachers."

    So she bullies them into compliance huh, as expected of Yakuza Princess, but you'll have to watch over her more now.

    "Well, to think we can finish it in less than an hour is nice." Miyuki stretches his arm out, "You know, I spend my time in the Council's office practically every day that it feels odd spending time elsewhere after school."

    "Don't you have work to do?"

    "After the council activities though."

    Though the door was completely open, you hear the knock and turn your attention there. A familiar upperclassman with glasses stands there awkwardly.

    "He-hello."

    "Hmm? Oh, please come in, we're just done cleaning." Miyuki welcomes her as he put a couple of desk and chairs down and wipe them with a clean rag.

    "Sorry for intruding." Kose and Kino follow her meekly, clearly afraid of Ryuju.

    "Please don't be so formal." Miyuki smiles, but his expression is confident and domineering. "We're all struggling together here."

    That was a lie!

    By claiming he's also struggling, Miyuki can claim an open position of acceptance, while in reality, this club isn't going to struggle for the moment.

    By doing so, Miyuki makes sure we're having an upper hand from turn one.

    "First of all, I want to thank you personally for helping Karen-san and Erika-san with the articles, Hikigaya-kun." The bespectacled Club president said, "Thanks to you they can escape rut and write interesting and popular articles now."

    "It's merely a coincidence, Senpai."

    "When I hear you're establishing a new club, I legitimately interested. Shuchiin High seen clubs created and disbanded in the blink of an eye, but there's no other club that starts with a bang like this-"

    Ryuju, who was in complete disinterest with the discussion, start checking up the guns and then fired one as a test.

    "Literally."

    "And I have the feeling it can make good articles too, by introducing this club in our articles."

    "We feel the same." You nod at her, "So let's move on to the details."

    Aside from semi-formal interviews as the main feature of the article, the Mass media club also planned to design a recruitment poster for the club, something you definitely don't think much about.

    And then all hell breaks loose.

    "In my humble opinion having the three of them together on the same page should be better."

    "But don't you think it's better if the atmosphere is a bit cheerful?"

    "If only Kaguya-sama in this club too." Kose and Kino sigh almost synchronously.

    You twitch in response, "Don't be unreasonable."

    In other words, none of them can seem to agree on which design concept should be used. Still, you can digest enough info that in terms of the design proposed there are five design elements and you have to pick two.

    The focus of the poster:
    [ ] All three member have the same focus (By President)
    [ ] Focus on You and Miyuki, with Ryuju standing in the background (By Kino)
    [ ] Focus on Miyuki and Ryuju, with you standing in the background (By Kose)

    The tone of the poster:
    [ ] Make the poster look serious and cool, like an action movie poster. (By Ryuju)
    [ ] Make the poster look fun and lighthearted, like a family movie poster. (By Miyuki)
     
  20. Threadmarks: Chapter 3.4
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 16 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [x] Make the poster look serious and cool, like an action movie poster. (By Ryuju)
    No. of Votes: 12
    Achagoya0072
    blakekeane
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    Cuchulin
    Him01
    Lector312
    Nnu
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri
    Wirdo

    [x] All three member have the same focus (By President)
    No. of Votes: 11
    Achagoya0072
    blakekeane
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    Cuchulin
    kenmadragon
    Lector312
    Nnu
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri

    [X] Focus on Miyuki and Ryuju, with you standing in the background (By Kose)
    No. of Votes: 2
    Wirdo
    Him01

    [X] Make the poster look fun and lighthearted, like a family movie poster. (By Miyuki)
    No. of Votes: 1
    kenmadragon

    Total No. of Voters: 13

    "Just keep everyone on the same page, and make it cool and grit." You decide, "This is Survival game club after all, and I don't want to put false advertising."

    "While what you're saying is true, it's kind of hurting me you know." Miyuki pouts in response. Hey, ghost member doesn't get to complain!

    "Umm, why is that a problem, President Shirogane?" The bespectacled president asked curiously.

    "Early on the job of Student council is going to be fairly mild, and I more or less finished the hectic process of power transition this month, but after this, there's Athletic festival, midterm and also Cultural Festival on the horizon." Miyuki explains to them, "So chances that I won't be able to come to the club often."

    If he got the chance at all.

    "I see."

    The photoshoot for the articles took place in the forest behind the old school building and roughly to the south of student council office, this is also the area that Survival game club will be more or less the most active in, simply because it's safe for gunfighting.

    It's basically the perfect spot, and Principal more or less gave you that mandate.

    For this session of the photoshoot, everyone wears generic tracksuits that are both comfortable and at the same time protective enough for basic airsoft games. Everyone also wear tactical chest rig where one can strap on magazine pouches and other militaristic accesories.

    Kino and Kose take pictures of everyone doing the basic run, crawling, and shooting targets. You inwardly note how it looks like pictures of military boot camp than anything, and Ryuju outright says out loud and laughs.

    The photos for the articles were made so that they look mundane but still interesting to look at after all the article photos supposedly represent the reality of the club rather than something eye-catching.

    That's what the recruitment poster for, and this time the photo will have a digitally altered background so it's taken in the photography club studio instead.

    "Borrowing the drama club costumes is fine as all but why is this?" Miyuki looks at the vaguely middle eastern gown and trouser he's wearing.

    Meanwhile, you're wearing a rather nondescript brown BDU (army uniform) with extremely obvious fake patches and non-military ranks.

    For a supposedly weak club, Mass Media club sure as heck have a lot of connection to dial into.

    "Well, the theme of the poster is Merchant of death Ryuju-sama selling weapons to insurgents President Shirogane and Russian mercenary Hikigaya-kun." President of Mass media club says nonchalantly, with gleaming glasses, "I'm trying to think of old Hollywood movies and this comes to mind."

    "That's the 90s as fuck." You exclaim loudly, not that there's anything wrong with the concept.

    Still, Merchant of death, aka arms dealer, isn't that a bit too on the nose? You and Miyuki look at Ryuju who freezes at the realization.

    She's dressed in a very stylish businessman suit.

    "I wonder if she's mad?" Miyuki whispers at you.

    "I like it." Ryuju's eyes widened, she looks really excited it seems. "Let's go with that one."

    "I'm glad Ryuju-sama likes it." President of Mass Media club sighs in relief, clearly doing a high-risk gamble with the idea.

    In the end, the basic composition of the poster has been decided. The picture has the Yakuza princess grinning manically with an open gun case in her hands, while you and Miyuki flanking from both sides, pointing a pistol to each other with murderous intention.

    "It hasn't even put into basic editing and it's already cool as hell." Miyuki remarks happily when he looks at the tablet screen for the concept composition, "This might be more fun than I thought."

    For Miyuki who only knows part-time work in all his youthful life, the experience of the School Club is definitely a new one. As for both Ryuju and you, both of you were socially ostracized in the past, and for that reason alone, neither of you have experienced this either.

    Perhaps this is why the majority of students would sacrifice their free time to spend in the club. Sure, some of them were pressured to join whether by their parents or their friends, but most people enter a club on their own volition.

    Fun.

    You don't get to say you're having fun very, very often.

    "Speaking of which, did you alone come up with this idea?" Miyuki asks the other club President on the scene.

    "Well, to be honest, I'm glad my composition is picked."

    You look at Kose and Kino who avert their eyes away, their collective face begins to sweat profusely and then slid away trying to run.

    But you decide to follow them and ask with a half-whispers, "Anything you want to tell me?"

    "It's very obvious that no other girl should stand beside President Shirogane except Kaguya-sama." Kino grit her teeth.

    "What the hell, what about you, Kose?"

    "Framing it as love triangle looks pretty interesting so..." Kose wince.

    "This is why you're so hopeless romantically, you shitty Miso!"

    "What the hell that's supposed to mean, you ship trash?!"

    In the end, they ramble on each other again, as usual, the delusional maiden and Shinomiya fanatic show just how much of a best friend they are, by casually fighting like this.

    Indeed, to have a 'fight' you need to be close with someone in the first place.

    Still, you really are thankful for the Mass Media club President, she probably has to deal with these two daily... as fellow Club President, you have nothing but a sense of respect to her now.

    As Ryuju and Miyuki return to the Student Council room for the remainder of free time they have, you approach the other Club President and says "Thank you for the help, today."

    "It's fine, besides I'm just trying to repay your and President Shirogane's help." She smiles kindly, "Not just recently but back then too, the first time we meet last April."

    Back then?

    Ah...

    You remember vividly, it's early in April last semester when the previous StuCo President rope Miyuki into volunteering for cleaning activities of Bloodpool swamp.

    It seems that this particular upperclassman got into an accident during the cleaning, Shinomiya rescued her and Miyuki assisted them to get out, only for Miyuki to fall into the swamp and you jumped in to save him.

    This was the stage that set Miyuki's slow ascension into prominence in Shuchiin... when he got inspired by Shinomiya and spend an inhuman amount of effort to catch up with the genius Ice Goddess.

    [​IMG]

    It all began with this girl. Very funny.

    "I legit forgot that." You blush and scratch your head.

    [​IMG]

    "Hikigaya-kun is very blunt, but you're also very kind. You're not the type to take credits to your own accomplishment." She smiles, "So I hope you don't mind if Karen and Erika bother you again at some point. In return, I'll be sure to help you as long as I can, so don't hesitate."

    Of course, you'll be bothered, but as a matter of rejecting them... looks like Senpai see through you very easily, despite her meek and pushover look.

    "Can't promise anything." You tell her in the end, "But please take care of me as your Junior."

    ...

    It seems that instead of spending her free weekend at Chiba, Komachi will come to Tokyo for her Idol training. You know that being an Idol is not really her ambition, but rather a contingency plan just in case she fails to get into her favorite school.

    Komachi's potential has been acknowledged even by Father's hard-ass bitch of a boss, Director Mishiro. Though to be fair, she also acknowledged your potential in Idol business. Komachi isn't very bright at school, this much you already know, but looking at a girl this young and already concerned with her future, sometimes you feel inferior.

    So what you're going to do?

    [ ] Go to Father's workplace and help with whatever you can
    [ ] Fetch Komachi later when she's done and cook something nice for her for the time being
     
  21. Threadmarks: Chapter 3.5
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Less and less people voted, I hope this quest isn't going to die soon.

    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 16 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Fetch Komachi later when she's done and cook something nice for her for the time being
    No. of Votes: 8
    Nnu
    BB54
    BooksRFme
    Cane Toad
    Cuchulin
    inlurkshadow
    Kerrowe
    ShadowStrykerX

    [x] Go to Father's workplace and help with whatever you can
    No. of Votes: 6
    Achagoya0072
    1986ctcel
    CloLag01
    Lucidum
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri

    Total No. of Voters: 14

    You decide to simply wait for your sister as you go home and went into a shopping spree and cooking a lot of stuff at the same time.

    If your guess isn't off, then it's very likely that Father will tag along with Komachi and come to spend the night, he hasn't come to visit this week anyway, though your mother came twice on Tuesday and Thursday night.

    Even if you have leftovers, you can just stuff them in the fridge for tomorrow.

    Must cook more!

    Reminded by your experience yesterday, you decide to cook in the most hearty way possible, that is, the Japanese way. Miso boiled fish should be a good choice to replenish an empty stomach.

    Your phone rings when you almost finish the preparation for cutting the fish, it's not frozen though it's kept in ice. Much easier to deal with than live fish.

    [Hy, Hikigaya-san, what are you doing at the moment?]"

    You feel a little confused when you look at the sender, which is Kose. You reply to her you're cooking for dinner, and ask if she's messaging you as part of some kind of punishment game.

    After being rejected eleven times and bullied as consequences of failed confession, you become somewhat paranoid when a girl message you without a clear intent. Always assume the worst, that way you can never be disappointed and kill yourself! Brilliant!

    Thankfully she replies it's not punishment game, but she's just about done with poster editing and want to tell, but she doesn't want to come off as too stiff and to the point. She's working together with Kino, as they have a sleepover.

    [Why are you assuming it's a punishment game anyway?] She types in curiosity.

    You truthfully answer, [Because it happened before, that's why I asked.]

    Kose says that she can't imagine anyone being that cruel, but she's probably too kind and naive to do such thing, intentionally anyway.

    But she decides to simply dig deeper, [What even are you cooking?]

    [Miso-boiled Mackerel.]

    [For real?! The same menu as Yayoiken? What brand of Miso are you using? Dark miso or light miso? What about the proportion with the seasoning?]

    [Obviously Red Miso, and the brand... is that even important?]

    A string of rant came out in response to that, which makes you chuckle a bit. Second only to Shinomiya, this girl probably only have Miso in mind.

    [Picking red miso is the correct choice because the strong taste and aroma balance out the high protein content in fish and meat, but do you know what other types are?]

    [Let me guess, use hatcho miso for heavy stew and braising?] You guess ahead, [That's the basic.]

    Hatcho miso is a type of dark miso that's made of 100% soybean, as opposed to mixtures. Hatcho miso has an extremely concentrated taste and thus best used in small quantities.

    [Wow, I don't think many boys would know so much about cooking, let alone miso in particular.]

    You want to say that's kind of sexist, if not for the fact that it's particularly true for the wealthy boys of Shuchiin. How many of them cook for themselves? Miyuki is the only other boy who cooks for an entire household.

    [Miyuki does, in some aspect, he's way better cook than me.]

    Immediately afterward you get bombarded e-mail courtesy of Kino who joins the fray after being silent for a while.

    [Really?! Not only he's academically perfect, majestic, athletic and handsome but he's also cooks?! As expected, no one else is worthy of standing besides Kaguya-sama!]

    [Drop the anchor now, Kino. That ship isn't sailing anytime soon because both of them would be too busy to date anyone at the moment.] You tell her off.

    That and if your impression isn't wrong, Shinomiya Kaguya is as prideful as Miyuki is, in the chance that Miyuki had his obsession reciprocated, then Shinomiya would be too stubborn to confess.

    [You tell him, Hikigaya-san!] Kose definitely laughs her ass off across the phone.

    [I suppose the best time for that to happen would be during the Devoted Heart festival.] Kino dejectedly compromises.

    ...this is turning into a weird e-mail thread again, like the one you have with Kashiwagi before, but twice as tedious to read. LINE is probably easier to use at this point. You can just imagine that Kino and Kose basically staring at each other's phones at the moment.

    Come to think of it, your conversational skill definitely improves since Junior high. Maybe that's the reason why girls stop ignoring you like before.

    That or maybe because back then, you were creepy and full of ulterior motives, unlike now, where you presented yourself as someone who simply open to inane conversation, but rarely starting it yourself unless you need to.

    That's why it's unlikely for these girls to fall in love with you. Your type of approach means they'll just use you as a rebound, or worse, kicked into a permanent friendzone. But you don't mind, the road to House husbandry isn't an easy path, nor exceptionally romantic and smelling roses.

    [Hey, send us the pics if you're done. I'll be the judge.]

    Unlike Miyuki, you have no drive to aim high obsessively and destroying yourself in the process of pursuing it. It's not worth the effort.

    [Picture sent.]

    ...

    Unexpectedly, it's not just your father who came in to crash down, but your mother also comes. Scenes like this, you wouldn't dare to dream.

    Back then, they're so busy that they left to work before you wake up and came back home after you sleep.

    "Actually, today I tried riding a moped. It's surprisingly easy to navigate Tokyo on a bike, and I can save time going back and forth to Chiba every day." He raises his thumb, "I'm going to buy one."

    It takes roughly one and a half hour trip walking and then riding on a train from his workplace to your house in Chiba, and vice versa. That's three hours spent every day on transit alone!

    With a motorcycle, through the standard toll and riding at a safe speed, it should take 45 minutes, more or less. So that's almost half the time cut on traveling.

    "Yeah, if you accept 7 times mortal accident rate compared to cars, motorcycle seems to be a lot more convenient. Also, get a license, idiot." You sarcastically scold him, "Mother needs to say something too."

    Your mother is barely lucid, at this rate she's going to fall asleep in the middle of dinner!

    "Don't worry, I'm doing research for a drama project, collaboration with male idols production office." Your father says, "It's about a biker gang member who found love."

    You legitimately want to belch in disgust. Your father, idiotic as he can be, is truly dedicated Producer that willing to go hands-on in everything. Even something minor and moderately dangerous like this...

    "Well, Hachiman is too spineless to break any law so you can't use him as a model, sadly." Your mother wakes up from her half slumber and yawn, "Wow, this dinner is festive."

    "Is there a need for you to insult me like that?"

    You should be praised instead!

    "Whoa, Onii-chan definitely go all out this time around." Komachi praises you, "Amazing, Onii-chan. Even the smell is delicious!"

    "Delicious." Your mother and father also say in sync.

    "I'm legitimately sad that my own son cooks better than me." Your mother slams her face to the table in despair.

    "I'm certain he cooks better than his female classmates at this point." Your father raises his hands in delight, even though he's not exceptionally religious.

    "Well yeah, compared to me you can't cook to save your life." You tell him, which makes him look away in shame. Needless to say, Hikigaya patriarch is the worst cook in the family.

    "Oh, by the way, the Sports festival is in a week right?" The father suddenly remembers, "I'll definitely come to watch."

    "Don't." You tell him.

    "Why?!"

    "You know damn well why."

    You still have a grudge about the festival in third-year junior high, when you made a mistake and get laughed at, your parents and Komachi left elsewhere.

    Now that you become elite Shuchiin scholarship students and also living alone, you basically get to flex and guilt-trip your parents without worry. Awkward atmosphere? Who cares. our house, your rules!

    "I'm serious though." Your father insists, "I'll be honest, it's actually something that my boss recommend me, but even without that, I already planned to take a break regardless."

    One of the big sponsors of Father's Production office is the Saionji group and said sponsor's daughter is also a student of Shuchiin, as well as an Idol. It makes a lot of sense that said sponsor convinces Father's boss to give him a mandatory leave for this once a year occasion.

    Speaking of which, said student is Saionji Kotoka, an upperclassman. You haven't really met her before, simply because you never have the intention to (as you avoid anything idol related in the first semester). Just like Shinomiya, it's one of Japan's big four Zaibatsu family.

    "What about you, mother?" Komachi asks.

    "Mother will also come, the thing is I'll also go on a week business trip to Okinawa later, it will be an evening flight." Your mother calmly says, but her voice wavers.

    "...Well, that complicates things." Your father twitch.

    Back then, they don't really have to worry about going on business trips because you and Komachi live together. But now? Their children live separately, and no way in hell they'll leave Komachi alone in Chiba.

    Not only she's a cute girl, but she's also 13 years old!

    "Then I'll be sure to come back home every day." You tell her.

    "Wouldn't that be tough?" Your parents, for the first time since... you actually don't remember the last time they did, but they clearly show concern when you propose that idea.

    "It's just 30 minutes riding via a toll road, I can manage."

    Anything for your lovely little sister.

    "...I should get a motorcycle license soon." Your father decides as he drinks the homemade kvass you brew, and your mother is the same.

    "Oh, by the way, wanna go somewhere tomorrow? Coming home early is a rarity for us after all." Your mother suddenly says.

    "That's true actually." Your father nods furiously, "Let's go somewhere, anywhere."

    "Don't you guys need to catch up on sleep?" You question them, not that you don't appreciate the attempt to mend things...

    "Sleep is for the weak, MORE!" Your father shouts as he raises his now empty glass. To get drunk from this you'll need to drink by the gallon, so he's simply acting the part.

    That or your father almost as sleepy as your mother, so he acts like a drunkard. They'll definitely hit the bed the moment they walk away from the dining table.

    Oh well, maybe you can introduce a few smaller, less crowded theme parks in Tokyo?

    If nothing else, Komachi is really happy today. For children, nothing makes them happier than sharing the same dining table as their parents.

    And you're no exception.

    CHAPTER 4

    The new article and poster published by Newspaper Club are making a big hit, especially the incredibly exaggerated moviesque promotional poster.

    In just a single day, you seem to gain more recognition than before, and frankly speaking, you wonder if you deserve it.

    At the very least, everyone begins to know you as someone who hangs out a lot with Miyuki and Ryuju. It's probably not a stretch to say this introduction of the new club boosted your popularity by twofold.

    Right on the first day of the announcement, there's a literal horde of students coming to visit and doing a trial period.

    Some people came to visit because they're curious about Miyuki's membership. They don't know Miyuki is a ghost member, but even then, the existence of Ryuju Momo by herself is a great filter for the spineless scrubs.

    The trial period composed of small running activities, forest navigation, and finally, gun safety courses and shooting games. Principal purposely made it clear that the Survival Game club isn't a place to fool around as it's very, very dangerous, though it will be fun once they learn properly and get into real firefights.

    This Trial period, in your humble opinion, has a perfect balance of fun and serious factor, but even then, the majority of the students either lose interest or simply feel satisfied enough and leave.

    You know recruitment isn't going to be easy but still...

    Three male students decided to stick to the end and want to join the club, though you haven't really talked with them about their motives. To be honest, you're somewhat conflicted.


    • HAYATO HONGO
      Social Rank: 3
      Academic Rank: 44
      Charisma: 8 (He's very handsome and charming)
      Manliness: 7 (Confident and self assured)
      Athleticism: 7 (Good)
      Shooting: 5 (Mediocre)
      Quirk: Unknown

    • TANUMA TSUBASA
      Social Rank: 3+
      Academic Rank: 128
      Charisma: 7 (Good looking but a little plain)
      Manliness: 4 (Rather meek)
      Athleticism: 5 (Mediocre)
      Shooting: 6 (Average)
      Quirk: Unknown

    • TOYOSAKI SABURO
      Social Rank: 3
      Academic Rank: 6
      Charisma: 6 (Average)
      Manliness: 7 (Confident and self assured)
      Athleticism: 6 (Average)
      Shooting: 9 (Excellent)
      Quirk: Unknown


    On the other hand, the club is precarious as it is, on the other hand, getting troublesome members also a pain in the ass. Momo said she can investigate them, very, very covertly.

    Should you do a private investigation?
    [ ] Yes, and see if they really know what they're getting into.
    [ ] No, let them join regardless.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  22. Threadmarks: Chapter 4
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 17 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Yes, and see if they really know what they're getting into.
    No. of Votes: 24
    TriGayatri
    Achagoya0072
    bastur2
    blakekeane
    Blonddude42
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    CookieSideUser
    Drey
    eraserman
    Euphemism
    Him01
    HipoSlime
    Kravenmato
    Lector312
    Malason123
    Nnu
    Prismatic Glaive
    rocket501
    ScarletCloud
    SEKALE
    Terubozu1
    Yveski

    Total No. of Voters: 24

    "Let's go for it."

    The first target of scrutiny, Hongo Hayato.

    [​IMG]

    First-year, fairly handsome, academically and athletically noticeable on the top level, very friendly and approachable at least on the surface. Historically no bad records or gross misconduct though there's rumor surrounding him being playboy, this isn't actually true.

    Hongo might appear a little arrogant and overconfident, but not really worse than Miyuki was when he's putting a mask. The idea of Hongo being a playboy isn't true, as he never really date more than one girl at any time, that said, he's what one can describe as a fickle-hearted serial romancer.

    Most of his girlfriends don't last long, thus, Hongo could be seen with a new girlfriend every other week. You don't know the reason, but that's the fact and no sources reveal if he's an especially abusive or nagging boyfriend, perhaps this guy only knows how to sweet talk but poor at actual relationship? Who knows.

    There doesn't seem to be any particular issue with him that would create a big problem with the club.

    ...

    The second one, Tanuma Tsubasa.

    [​IMG]

    A grandson of world-renowned Surgeon, and coming from basically a doctor's family, Tsubasa Tanuma can only thus be described with one metaphor: a beige sweater.

    Tsubasa can only be described as a bland, nondescript nice guy. He dressed rather plain and can't into fashion at all to take advantage of his handsome face, academically on the bottom half of rankings, far from sporty or athletic, and there's something about his personality and mannerism is rather wimpy.

    Tanuma is the very definition of extremely ordinary, harmless omega, probably worse than you in the early period of Shuchiin.

    There shouldn't be any problem with him joining the club either.

    ...

    Toyosaki Saburo, on the other hand, is an entirely different kind.

    [​IMG]

    According to Momo's investigation, Saburo is an extremely cunning and ambitious student, wanting to raise his academic standing higher and higher no matter what, even so far as dragging everyone down when he can't continue climbing up.

    In other words, he's exactly like Miyuki. And the majority of top-ranked students. They would lie, manipulate others, and spread disinformation to make sure everyone else studied the least while working hard to get a high grade themselves.

    Being one of the honest, simple-minded students who study at their own pace regardless of the result, but achieve high grade anyway... you're actually in the minority!

    So it turns out a problem potential isn't even a problem, though it's best to be cautious. As you understand, Toyosaki gets along well with Miyuki, even if they stab each other by the back regularly when it comes to the exam.

    If his aim to join the club was Miyuki, then he's in for a disappointing surprise. Heh.

    "Looks like a bunch of harmless scrubs to me, I don't think I have much to complain." Momo said, "This guy, Tanuma, probably needs to get whipped into shape though, like you were."

    Hey, you resemble that remark!

    Miyuki himself has no objection, but he stressed the fact that his club participation will be spotty at best too, so it's up to you to decide who will be accepted in the club. The problem is, rejecting club application without concrete reason requires certain diplomacy fu. So there is a risk of not accepting them either way.

    (Pick as much as you want, anyone got less than half the vote is rejected)
    [ ] Accept Hongo Hayato
    [ ] Accept Tanuma Tsubasa
    [ ] Accept Toyosaki Saburo
     
  23. Threadmarks: Chapter 4.1
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 18 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Accept Tanuma Tsubasa
    No. of Votes: 21
    DamnedAeons 187
    Achagoya0072
    BB54
    Blonddude42
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    CookieSideUser
    Cuchulin
    Him01
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    Kieron
    Lector312
    Malason123
    Masterhentai
    ScarletCloud
    taovkool
    TriGayatri
    Xion930
    Yveski

    [X] Accept Hongo Hayato
    No. of Votes: 18
    DamnedAeons 187
    Achagoya0072
    BB54
    Blonddude42
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    CookieSideUser
    Cuchulin
    inlurkshadow
    Kieron
    Lector312
    Malason123
    ScarletCloud
    taovkool
    TriGayatri
    Xion930
    Yveski

    [X] Accept Toyosaki Saburo
    No. of Votes: 13
    DamnedAeons 187
    Achagoya0072
    Blonddude42
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    Cuchulin
    Kieron
    Lector312
    Malason123
    ScarletCloud
    taovkool
    Xion930

    Total No. of Voters: 21

    "Approve them all." You say to Momo and Miyuki, "In this early stage of club conception, we can't bear to be too picky. How many non-sports clubs can get three additional members in a single day?"

    Besides, if anyone causes big trouble for the club, Momo will be mighty pissed, and absolutely no one makes VIPs pissed and get away unscathed.

    "Then it's decided, let's have them approved by Headmaster."

    On the second day of the club activity, Miyuki decides to at least show up to give face.

    "Hmm, hmm, interesting. Very interesting." Headmaster, who was dressed in BDU (battle dress unit, aka, military field uniform) rubs his goatee in satisfaction. "Doubling the club memberships in one day is pretty impressive."

    "Keh, I don't know we have the Principal for an advisor." Hongo looks rather shocked by the revelation while Tanuma shows a dull surprise. As for Toyosaki, he didn't react at all.

    "First of all, I officially welcome the new members of the Survival Game club. Our policy is serious fun, that is, we're serious in having fun." The Principal starts walking in front of the members, "Attendance is not mandatory, but if you attend the club activities, don't make it difficult for yourself and other members. Participation is voluntary and you may quit anytime you feel, and if you have any problem, feel free to speak directly with Club President Hikigaya or Me."

    The Principal was pretty to the point on this because he wants to emphasize how extremely unusual this club is compared to others. You don't expect perfect teamwork like with sports clubs, but you also don't want people to slack off in the middle of activities.

    "Yesterday you're taught unarmed walking and crawling, gun safety, and gun operation. This time around we're going to learn gun selection, field movement while carrying equipment, and also shooting on the move." The Principal points up, "Let's start with weapon selection first."

    "Sensei, we can pick whatever we want right?" Momo yawn.

    "Indeed, that's true. Some people would pick up a gun they like even if it doesn't suit them." The Principal smiles, "But for those who newly started its best they try a different kind of weapon and use the one they most comfortable with."

    "Umm, is comfort the most important part?" Tanuma raises his hand in curiosity.

    "Indeed when you start it's probably the most important part. Gun weight, length, firing posture, and sight is the most important aspect more than their power or accuracy. If it's too heavy you'll tire yourself very quickly, if it's too light you end up losing balance and control."

    "Since the guns in our arsenal are full metal build I don't think being too light will be an issue." You scoff in response, "I already have something in mind but I'll still participate."

    "Actually Hikigaya, since we're technically a sports club, don't you think instead of a President, you should be called our club Captain?" Toyosaki proposes.

    "That's actually true." Miyuki said, "Hachiman should be Captain."

    You have no room to argue, so now your title will be Survival Game Club Captain instead.

    "Magnifique. With that decided, we shall begin. Would you please start demonstrating, Ryuju-san?" The Principal asked, "Captain comes second."

    The gun test course starts with simple sprinting to a distance, take a 180-degree turn at the end, navigate tire obstacles as you walk, crawl under a net obstacle, and then shoot to the left side and right side target while standing and then shooting leftward while on the jogging.

    It's short, but with the number of tries for the member, it's also a rather tedious experience.

    "So, everyone is finished, let's take a break." The Principal said, "Have you found your soulmate yet?"

    Soulmate? Exaggerated perhaps, but boy, carrying those metal guns are beyond a chore in action. If you pick the wrong option, it'll end up really, really difficult to deal with.

    But as a Captain, you decide to give everyone else ahead in choice of pick.

    The result thus...

    "One of these things isn't like the other." You look at Ryuju who is toting around the classic Mafia gun of the Prohibition-era America. "Talk about style over substance."

    "I can still kick your ass with it so fuck off." Ryuju grins smugly.

    As a matter of fact, it's not just the gun model that's out of place in the team, but there's also the fact Ryuju is carrying her personal gun in a violin case, not a gun case.

    [​IMG]

    But despite Thompson being an incredibly unwieldy gun with its wide drum magazine, Ryuju was saying the truth that yes, she can absolutely kick everyone's ass in an airsoft battle.

    "By the way, Shirogane-kun here's a little gift." The Principal handed Shirogane a small set of swimming goggles, "This is prescription goggles that should fit your eyes well, and you can wear it under airsoft protective goggles."

    "Prescription goggles?" Toyosaki asks, "President, you..."

    "Ah... I haven't told many people before, but I'm actually nearsighted." Miyuki wears it, "Wow, it's so clear. Is it fine for me to wear this?"

    "Of course, it's actually rather cheap anyway so please don't mind it too much." The Principal said, "I find it always odd for you to never wear any glasses or contact lens."

    Miyuki would never wear glasses because he considers them look dorky, and he wanted to show off his face in front of Shinomiya and the Shuchiin students as a whole. On the other hand, he also considers the contact lens as an expensive and potential health hazard so wearing them out of question.

    But you can't play airsoft while visually impaired, can you? Besides, Miyuki is going to wear protective goggles over the smaller swimming goggles, so it wouldn't really hurt his style.

    The Principal winks at you knowingly, it seems that he decided not to tell you beforehand as a pleasant surprise.

    The full steel body, real wood furniture Kalashnikov in Miyuki's hands, it weights tremendous four-point-five kilograms or ten pounds. It's singlehandedly the heaviest gun in the entire arsenal of Shuchiin High Survival Game Club bar none.

    "So you picked up a heavy gun with iron sight while nearsighted, who are you trying to kid?"

    Toyosaki opens his perpetually squeezed eyes, it seems that realizing Miyuki being handicapped before actually lit competitiveness in him.

    That's right, normally Toyosaki always looks like he's half-asleep. If he opens his eyes fully it means he's putting his full effort. So it's clear that Miyuki is his main motivation for joining this club...

    "Since you've rested well, next one we can step into firing on the move against moving end." The Principal pulled out a radio and makes a call, "This is Principal, send them in."

    A couple of drones came while a human-looking paper target hanging from them.

    "Drones?" Tanuma gasps, "We're shooting drones?"

    "No, of course not, the target under the drones is what you should shoot at." The Principal said, "It seems that this club will work together with the Robot Club now and in the future."

    More like Ryuju had them by the balls, but this is extremely helpful.

    "So let's begin with our next exercise, keep your grip steady, stock to shoulder, and eyes on the sight." The Principal claps, "Go!"

    ...

    When the second exercise ended, you're basically beaten to hell and back. Your tracksuit, just like others, were drenched with sweat, clinging rather disgustingly to your skin.

    You haven't exercised this hard in the past few months.

    "Survival Game is tougher than it looks." Tanuma basically lay on the ground, dying of exhaustion. And Toyosaki isn't in a much better shape himself.

    "Well duh, it's basically halfway between obstacle race and military training, of course, it's tiring," Miyuki states the obvious, but compared to everyone in the club, he's the one least tired, with you close second.

    Indeed, today's club activity is far more intense than yesterday's trial event.

    "Is it going to be like this every day?" Hongo looks somewhat shaken, he might be overestimating his vitality.

    "Well, we're this close to the Shuchiin Athletic festival." The Principal cheerfully points, "Remember the main event is Club Relay race, so I figure it's best to train while doing club activities."

    Two birds with a stone.

    "Unfortunately, I will be representing the Student Council, so we'll be competing instead." Miyuki laughs, "Sorry about that."

    "I wouldn't have it any other way." Toyosaki looks aside and smiles ominously.

    It's impossible for him, who's physically average at best, to beat Miyuki in a duel of sprinting. However, in a relay race... it's not at all impossible.

    So THIS was his plan all along, well played.

    "Student Council will be represented by Shirogane, Shinomiya, Fujiwara, and the second year General Affairs manager." Ryuju says, "So I'll be here available if you need me."

    Logically speaking, that leaves the members of the Club Relay representative being you, Ryuju, and then Hongo, which leaves the fourth member...

    Tanuma or Toyosaki, neither of them were exceptionally athletic, so picking one over the other doesn't make much difference.

    "Excuse me."

    "Ah, sorry for asking so much help."

    Unexpectedly, Kashiwagi and Shijo show up with bags of water bottles. It seems that the Principal is asking them to buy some water...

    Crap.

    "Indeed, Hikigaya-kun, you forgot to ensure everyone hydrated. In Survival Game this can be very, very dangerous." The Principal glares at you, "Next time this happens again you will be punished as Club Captain."

    "My apologies." You bow in response, this kind of mistake is minor but can be extremely detrimental to club performance. You look at Kashiwagi and bow at her too, "And thank you for the help, I'll pay you back."

    "It's fine, it's fine. Sensei gave us the money beforehand." Kashiwagi smiles innocently as she hands out the bag. "Looking at the Club being so immersed in training inspires us a lot."

    Ahh, she's way too nice. If it's the past you, surely you'll fall in love and confess instantly. But the current you learned it the hard way that it would be the worst thing you can do in this situation.

    "Tanuma, what are you doing lying there? So pathetic." Shijo squatted carefully near the withering plain boy, making sure her panties aren't visible. "It'd be problematic if you die today, so here, some sports drink."

    "Uh, oh, thanks, Shijo-san." Tanuma sits down and though confused, accepted it.

    "Be glad I'm being very generous today." Shijo stands up and flicks her twin tails aside, and then glares at you angrily. "Unlike your incompetent Captain."

    "Well excuse me, Princess, this is my SECOND day." You respond with a deadpan, wondering why she's so mighty pissed. Still, she keeps stealing glances on the recovering Tanuma, could it be that Shijo is...

    "Anyway, thanks for the save, Kashiwagi. Without you, I'll be screwed today." You tell the black-haired girl in front of you.

    "It's fine, it's the duty of Public Service Club after all." She smiles and left.

    Well, that's a lie, you know Yukinoshita all too well that Yukinoshita's entire philosophy is to teach people to stand up for themselves. Aka, don't give a starving man a fish, but instead, teach him how to fish.

    Kashiwagi's action is, in every way, the opposite of what Yukinoshita, as the face of Public Service Club, would do.

    If reality is harsh, then lies must be kindness. Ergo, Kashiwagi was simply being kind to you and didn't really expecting anything in return. There's nothing more beyond that.

    "Well then, I'll have to clean myself and go to the Student Council now." Miyuki cleans his gun and put it back in the case after unplugging the battery. "See you again tomorrow."

    "See you tomorrow."

    If Miyuki managed to come to the club activities for a full week, then you'll have to check if pigs start growing wings. Nevertheless, you'll take what you can get.

    After making sure their guns cleaned, unplugged and stored properly, the three new club members also excuse themselves. Ryuju, on the other hand, decides to train some more, despite pretty much having perfected her skills.

    This time around, however, she's holding a pistol in each hand, which would be considerably more difficult to use than any two-handed guns.

    "Don't mind me, just leave," Ryuju tells you flatly.

    [ ] Train some more
    [ ] Go home
    [ ] Go elsewhere (write in)
     
  24. Threadmarks: Chapter 4.2
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 19 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Train some more
    No. of Votes: 19
    TriGayatri
    Achagoya0072
    bastur2
    blakekeane
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CloLag01
    CookieSideUser
    Cuchulin
    DamnedAeons 187
    Him01
    inlurkshadow
    kenmadragon
    Kravenmato
    Lmchakone
    Lucidum
    Malason123
    ScarletCloud
    Yveski

    [X] Go home
    No. of Votes: 2
    eraserman
    BooksRFme

    [X] Train some more (Best girl Ryuju)
    No. of Votes: 1
    Lector312

    -[x] After all, spending more time with Momo, "as a friend", was one of the reasons for this club.
    No. of Votes: 1
    bastur2

    Total No. of Voters: 22

    You decide to check the toolbox for extra parts and exchange the front-mounted dot sight with side-mounted sniper scope instead and begin shooting. The scope already zeroed in for an effective range of 30 meters just like your gun and you're pelting static cardboard target as the drones already out of power and returned to robot club.

    "Hey, Hikigaya, what do you think?" Ryuju asks as she pushes the magazine release buttons and let empty mags fell into a bag safely, "Is the club members so far good?"

    "They're more motivated than I assume, I admit." You tell her, "Toyosaki just want to pull one on Miyuki, Tanuma just flat out honest and want to have fun, but surprisingly, I expected Hongo to fuck up something but he didn't, and that makes me confused."

    Hongo seriously did club activities like everyone else, and he's the one you consider the least reliable if predictable.

    "Confused?" Ryuju blinks, "Well a skirt chaser doesn't seem to belong to a weird club with very niche appeal."

    "Well, I have two theories on his motive." You grin, "First of all, he enters this club to appeal girls after his string of failures, and the second one, well..."

    "Well?"

    "He's after you."

    Cue Ryuju literally rolling on the ground laughing incessantly, to the point of literally shedding tears. She never, ever laugh this hard before, at least, in the short time you get to know her.

    "Pull the other one." Ryuju giggles, "If he's after me he has way too much free time to waste."

    Admittedly, if one just takes a good look at Ryuju, they'll see a very beautiful girl with a sensual body, but once she opens her mouth, all bets are off. She's basically a boy inside.

    You can understand Hongo chasing her, from that fact alone, simply by the fact that he doesn't know her real personality yet. Once Hongo learns, then he'll probably take some distance or quit.

    "He's trying to look badass or something, we'll I'll happily whip him until he looks the part." Ryuju cackles manically, her face darkened.

    Considering the amount of abuse you suffer from her when she conditioned you to grow a spine, you make a sign of the cross in honor of Hongo's inevitable dark future.

    It's probably worse if Hongo DID want to get under Ryuju's skirt, you can't even imagine it.

    "Still, I'm willing to bet Toyosaki the first to quit." You tell her, "Once Miyuki stop attending clubs later."

    "Then we'll just make sure Shirogane don't quit." Ryuju lightly points out. As usual, she's really bad at long term planning.

    "Well, but we can't really force him to stay either. He has a student council to deal with, his study and part-time work." You tell her sadly, "If he has time to come once a week in the future, that would be good enough."

    "Seriously, all day every day like that?"

    "Every day like that."

    "I wonder if he will break apart at some point, human beings weren't supposed to have that dense in routine." She winces in sympathy.

    "Oh, he will, at some point he absolutely will." You cross your arm, "That's why I must distract him from time to time."

    She quietly unloads another set of magazines and finally ripped the cardboard target completely as you watch.

    "To be honest, I want to quit the Student Council." Ryuju suddenly says as she put back the pistols and magazines in the case, unloaded completely, with the gas reservoir in the magazines partially charged. "Especially when you reject Shirogane's invitation to the student council."

    "Eh?"

    "Do you know how extremely tedious Treasurer's work is?" Momo cringe trying to remember everything, "Besides which, Shinomiya is a frigid bitch and Fujiwara is a dumbass. I can't get along with them. And there's also the rift between us first year and our seniors in the second years."

    Ah, so after the departure of the Previous President, Ryuju probably feels a little lonely. Miyuki is an extreme workaholic and probably neglect Ryuju too much now that he took the mantle as Council President.

    "But I'm glad we created a club together like this."

    For the first time, Ryuju smiled freely as a girl would.

    "Yeah." You nod and smile back in response.

    By giving a breathing room for Ryuju to fall back into, Ryuju can stay in the council for the time being. That way, Miyuki won't be absolutely screwed further by having one of his most trusted friends leaving.

    Miyuki probably already see the signs of Ryuju burning out of enthusiasm.

    You guess it's among the reason why Miyuki decided to come and do the club activities in the end, despite his original intent to remain a ghost member. He's too proud to admit it, and you know that well.

    And who knows, maybe Miyuki can have fun from time to time.

    ...

    It's the middle of the week and it's high time for the class to pick representation for the Sports festival event. Starting today, club activity will cease as everyone focuses on training for the Athletic event.

    Truthfully you're not the type to pick ahead, nevertheless picking some of the possible events might benefit you better. So it should be a good balance between waiting and volunteering. You decide to avoid the more flashy events focusing on teamwork, like the traditional opening dance and human pyramid, as well as ball tossing, since that's more popular with the girls in class.

    Judging from your own stamina, three events should be workable, and you already decided to do Club relay.

    Speaking of which, Hongo decides to volunteer for the three-legged race. Were this a romantic comedy series, it'll definitely end up with girl-boy pairing, but that's unlikely the case.

    The problem is, the boys in the class despise him for his romantic shenanigans, so who wants to pair with him?

    "Is there any boy or girl who wants to do the 3-legged race?"

    Stupid question, Class Rep. You're wasting our time here! Also, Hongo already about to cry!

    "If no one wants it, put me there." Ryuju calmly says, as she rudely rests her legs on the table, "No guarantee we can win though."

    Boy-boy pairing would have an absolute advantage thanks to their stride length. Ryuju is fast, very fast when she's running by herself, but the 3-legged race is all about anatomic coordination, and thus two boys of similar height would have the most advantage.

    But Hongo looks surprised by the turn of events and completely speechless. As for Ryuju, she's probably trying to gauge Hongo's motive and seriousness by her own hands and eyes.

    As expected of whimsical Yakuza Princess.

    Pick 2
    [ ] The 3-legged race (With Hongo)
    [ ] 100 m Sprint (Miyuki competes here)
    [ ] Tug of War (Miyuki competes here)
    [ ] Obstacle Race
    [ ] Scavenger hunt
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020
    Hadiz, Sena Kumo, SeaCatAnna and 21 others like this.
  25. Threadmarks: Chapter 4.3
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 20 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [X] Scavenger hunt
    No. of Votes: 10
    Cane Toad
    bastur2
    BooksRFme
    CatDog
    CookieSideUser
    inlurkshadow
    ScarletCloud
    ShadowStrykerX
    TriGayatri
    Yveski

    [X] Obstacle Race
    No. of Votes: 8
    CloLag01
    blakekeane
    Drey
    inlurkshadow
    Lector312
    Lmchakone
    ShadowStrykerX
    TriGayatri

    [x] The 3-legged race (With Hongo)
    No. of Votes: 7
    Achagoya0072
    bastur2
    blakekeane
    CatDog
    Lmchakone
    ScarletCloud
    Yveski

    [X] Tug of War (Miyuki competes here)
    No. of Votes: 6
    Cane Toad
    BooksRFme
    CloLag01
    CookieSideUser
    Drey
    Lector312

    [X] 100 m Sprint (Miyuki competes here)
    No. of Votes: 1
    Achagoya0072

    Total No. of Voters: 16

    "I want to participate in the Scavenger run and obstacle race." You raise your hand confidently.

    In terms of running speed, you're not the fastest at school, heck, you're not even the fastest in the year. Nevertheless, when it comes to obstacle navigation, the knowledge of parkour that Ryuju imparted on you, as well as survival game club training, should come handy.

    As for scavenger run, it's mostly for hilarity anyway and it shouldn't be a problem for you to lose, not that you intended to lose in any way. It's also one of the more embarrassing events and thus people who don't have thick skin avoid it.

    "Well Hikigaya-kun is fast, so please give it all for us." Class Rep grin like a fool, "Looks like our representative for the three-legged race will be Hongo-kun and Ryuju-san. Anyone disagree?"

    Silence.

    "Alright then, starting today let's give it all in training! For Glory of Shuchiin!"

    "OOOOO!" Everyone raised their fist up, including you, though you're only halfway and half-heartedly shouts.

    Hongo looks happy at least, hopefully, he can be motivated by this decision. For Ryuju at least, she practically salivated to the thought of whipping a spine in onto the romancer's back.

    If Hongo survives this, either he'll come out a real man or sobbing wreck.

    "Well then, let's start with training, now." Ryuju's face darkened as she brought out a piece of cloth with her, "Hello, can we exchange seat please?"

    She talked immediately with the boy who sits to the left of Hongo. Of course, not only he's more than happy, but he's also too afraid to refuse. "Please, Ryuju-sama."

    Hongo cocked up smile slowly wither as Ryuju slid her desk so that it contacted his, and then tied their feet together. "With exception of outside school and going to the bathroom, we're going to be like this for the remainder of the week."

    Yep, Hongo is fucked. Needless to say, for Ryuju Momo there's no such thing as a half-hearted measure. Even the hateful boys already start to pity him... maybe that was Ryuju's plan all along? To make Hongo look pitiful and earn sympathy?

    Inevitably, some will say he deserves it, but those people are in the minority. People simply don't hate Hongo enough to overlook that he'll be glued to Ryuju for at least three days.

    It's a good decision to leave him in her hand.

    ...

    Afterschool, you go to the forest as usual even though club activity temporarily suspended, the terrain is perfect for you to train in the way of obstacle race.

    Ryuju and Hongo also practice synchronized jogging, at this point they had to focus less on speed and more on harmony, which isn't that hard since overbearing Ryuju gets to dictate the pace, thanks to her legs being 5cm shorter than his.

    "Captain, can we discuss something?" Toyosaki asked you, "About the fourth member of the Relay race... have you decided on who?"

    "What do you mean?"

    "Judging from all our physical abilities, it's very likely that you, Ryuju, and Hongo being the first three members to participate, which leaves me and Tanuma."

    Ah, you haven't really planned for it yet.

    "Ah, but I'm fine watching from the side really." Tanuma says with a sad smile, "I don't want to be a burden."

    Toyosaki is very self-assured, and he won't bend over under pressure despite his average athletic abilities. Furthermore, his motives for joining the club was to fight Miyuki head-on.

    Tanuma on the other hand, looked like he would cry or freeze. That said, this kind of event, going right, is pretty much the perfect occasion to build his confidence. Having him benched right away wouldn't be helpful.

    It would be ideal that Tanuma is paired with Ryuju, but the world is cruel like that.

    This might be very well one of the first decisions you will make as Club Captain that will have long term consequences to the relationship dynamic of the members.

    This is a very critical decision, it's also possible to use a full meritocracy system and simply see which one of them would work the best for the team, by seeing the result of their training at the end of the week instead.

    On the downside, you might have to sacrifice your weekend and not going to Chiba until the decision is made, on the plus side, perhaps having them compete for it would be good for their fighting spirit?

    Of course, you WILL make sure there's no foul play... Momo definitely has a way to ensure that.

    [ ] Choose Tanuma
    [ ] Choose Toyosaki
    [ ] Have them compete for the position
     
  26. Threadmarks: Chapter 4.4
    ZeroXSEED

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    [x] Have them compete for the position
    No. of Votes: 11
    Achagoya0072
    blakekeane
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    Him01
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    Yveski

    [X] Choose Tanuma
    No. of Votes: 1
    kenmadragon

    Total No. of Voters: 12

    "How about we decide like this." You respond, "Saturday before the festival, we'll conduct a test about which one of you more suited for the team. Speed is important but so does general preparedness and teamwork."

    "We'll do this the proper way by competition, that way there shouldn't be any bitter feelings."

    Well at least in theory.

    "Interesting." Toyosaki sighed, "If it was anyone else who says that, I'd call that person indecisive and trying to cover his own ass."

    "I'm the type of person who says it like it is." You tell him, "At the present the gaps between two of you are marginal, so it's up to your fighting spirits and drive to improve."

    "I see." Toyosaki clicks his tongue, "Then please excuse me."

    "Captain, is this really fine?"

    "Why? If don't want it, just say it out loud."

    "That's not what I mean though."

    Tanuma probably feels a bit guilty because he doesn't want to sow discord in the club, but deep down also wanted to participate. He wanted you to remove him from the equation.

    Coward.

    "Now listen here Tanuma." You cross your arm in annoyance, "Why did you join Survival Game Club? From a principle standpoint, we're just a bunch of tryhards pretending to be soldiers."

    "I don't really think so." Tanuma laughs in mirth, "Ever since the first time I saw this club, I always thought everyone looks really serious and cool."

    Among the reason why joining the Sabage club boost Miyuki's popularity is the gap between his serious, straight-laced model student appearance, with a very niche and wild club interest.

    Tanuma joined because he saw the appeal in that. But what works with Miyuki, doesn't necessarily work with anyone else.

    "So I thought it I were to join this club, then maybe I would stop being lame too." Tanuma scratches his hair, ashamed.

    You can't help that, looking at Tanuma right now reminds you of your middle school self. Less creepy and more outgoing perhaps, but the mindset isn't all that different.

    That absolutely has to change.

    "What difference is there, do you think, between looking cool and being cool?"

    "Huh? Umm... I dunno."

    "People like to act high and mighty and say so easily that you shouldn't judge a book by the cover, but part of publishing a good book also requires good packaging." You point up, "The entire bottom feeder of the light novel industry is filled by crap writers who are lucky enough to get a good illustrator proves this."

    "People are more like to judge you by your appearance first and foremost because your appearance reflects on how you treat yourself." You say as you loosen the muscles around your neck, shoulders, and back.

    You're slumping, which makes you look significantly shorter than you are, not to mention extremely creepy, and Tanuma's expression says all.

    "You following me so far?"

    "Umm yes."

    Tanuma probably gets caught off guard by your weak-looking, slob appearance.

    "Punch me in the back, but not too hard."

    "Huh?"

    Tanuma do it anyway despite his perplexed face, and with a small thud, your entire spine straightened again by reflex, along with the tightening of muscles around it.

    "This is what they mean by looking cool." You tell him as you resume your usual appearance, "But if you just want to look cool, then you'll be a failure like Hongo."

    "Uh, Hongo-san?"

    Both of you look at Ryuju and Hongo, practicing three-legged running at high speed. Despite being paired with one of the most beautiful girls in Shuchiin, Hongo looks really miserable today, and this training is going to continue until the Athletic Festival!

    "Yeah, he's handsome, smart, athletic, and his words of seduction are intoxicating, but once girls went past that they see a desperate, arrogant boy trying to prove himself. That's why his relationships didn't last long. Just like trashy light novels with great illustration end up forgotten or in trash bins."

    After spending these past three days as a club, you finally understand why. Hongo and Miyuki really aren't all that different inside. Their only difference is that Miyuki born with a complete lack of talents, while Hongo was blessed with them.

    Yet, through sheer effort alone, Miyuki could easily surpass him, to the point that he didn't register on Miyuki's radar at all. To Miyuki, Hongo is nothing more than a talking weed.

    Hongo refuses to improve himself as a person, while Miyuki continuously pursues self-improvement.

    "In other words, being cool means you have faith in your own quality and value as a person. If you can't even be proud of yourself, then how can you expect people to appreciate you?"

    People look down on you at middle school because you look down on yourself at middle school. When you started getting sick of it, you started studying madly to the point of becoming a hermit.

    And when you get accepted in the Shuchiin scholarship program, you can finally be proud of yourself and stick it out to your bullies in middle school, showing how much beneath you they are in reality. The pitiful bastards were speechless and ashamed, some even trying to suck it up to you later.

    And then, you meet her. Ryuju Momo wasn't a superficial person by any means, but she also recognized the importance to put up a strong front so people don't look down on her.

    She taught you how to project your inner strength outwardly, creating the tough and uncompromising appearance you possess now.

    "Even so..." Tanuma wavers in fear and uncertainty, "It's only less than a week until the athletic festival. How much difference do you think that would make?"

    "You wouldn't know until you try, don't you?" You punch his shoulder in annoyance, "Don't just work hard but work smart. It's pointless to train yourself hard, only for your body to fall apart during the event."

    "...Thanks, Captain." Tanuma Tsubasa's newfound smile was like that of a sunset, warm and comforting.

    As you roll your eyes aside, you see a glimpse of Shijo, peeking behind a tree. When the realizes the fact that you noticed, she immediately bails very, very quickly.

    That's not the speed of an average girl, no, that's not the speed of typical athletic girl either. She's probably almost as fast as Ryuju, and Ryuju is much faster than you, and that's kind of terrifying realization.

    What a stalker.

    ...

    A few days passed since then, and it's Saturday. The sports festival will be held tomorrow and much of the school already decorated for the occasion.

    Even though it was in the middle of electives, the topic of conversation remains focused on the issue of the upcoming Athletic festival.

    And thus one of the assignments was to write an article about sports festivals in general.

    "Hikigaya-kun, what's with this bitter reporting, isn't this supposed to be about your middle school Athletic festival experience?" The teacher asks in worry when she inspects your work.

    "It's not really out of the personal experience so much as out of personal observation." You tell her, "I remember some of my classmates griefing so hard and the teacher was quiet in pure disappointment. It was hell."

    And in your own case, your own parents literally abandoned you in the middle of a competition. You STILL haven't forgiven them for that, and you're skeptical that they're attending this year's athletic festival out of the goodness of their heart either.

    You really can't expect much out of them.

    "That's Personal experience though." The teacher shakes her head and awkwardly rubs your back, "Ordinary school students have it hard huh."

    Even though everyone retains their fierce competitiveness in the Athletic festival, Shuchiin students generally a lot more relaxed on such occasions and thus more forgiving toward mistakes by their classmates, and the teachers also pretty hands-off.

    "I think I'm going to rewrite this after all."

    "It's a well-written article though, if rather unique in perspective, you probably should keep it."

    "I will, Sensei."

    You rarely get open praise like this from a teacher, so you decide to keep the work even though it's technically not graded, it will be definitely published later.

    "Whoa, Hikigaya-san get praised again." Kino pouted in jealously.

    "It would be nice if your article didn't read like an R15 romance novel, Kino-san." Sensei looks rather irritated, "And Kose-san, are you trying to write religious solicitation involving Shinomiya-san?"

    Those two are beyond incompetent when they get into their obsession.

    "We'll redo it." They look away in shame.

    Sensei generally is harsher on Kose and Kino because of their position as members of the Mass Media club, so when it looks like they're not taking the electives seriously, it's rather jarring.

    The thing is that you're extremely sure Kino and Kose were serious, just that their entire mindset being rotten to the core, twisting the content of their article to suit their fetish.

    "Hikigaya-san, do you have free time today?"

    You immediately guess, "What, you want another restaurant article?"

    "Not this time, we're just going to play around." Kose confidently makes a peace sign, but her eyes shockingly resemble yours: like the eyes of a dead fish. "Because otherwise, we're going to burn out from all the physical training."

    In all honesty, you never really go 'play around' at least in the normal definition of high school boys recently. To relax, you either cook something new, play games or read stuff. Going to Arcade? Karaoke? Batting center, or bowling? Literally never.

    A natural introvert, you're naturally an indoor person yourself.

    "Hmmph, someone soo boorish probably doesn't know the normal definition of fun." Shijo flicks her twin tail smugly.

    Bitch please, your insult game is kiddy grade compared to Yukinoshita.

    "Just you four?" You ask them, "What about Yukinoshita?"

    "Yukino-san is meeting with her families so she won't be here." Kashiwagi smiles, "...You really close with Yukino-san huh, Hikigaya-san?"

    What's with that odd tone? Kashiwagi probably super disappointed with Yukinoshita's absence.

    "No way, we don't even share contacts." You cringe in response, "But just one guy would be awkward, wouldn't it?"

    "Oh don't worry we're just using you to shield us from getting hit on." Shijo looks at you with belittling sight. "After all, Shuchiin girl are the natural prey of unscrupulous peasant boys outside."

    Ouch. It's not like she didn't get a good point but ouch, now THAT hit too close to home.

    "I'm thankful for you for being frank, Stalker-san." You tease her, "Don't you want to invite someone else instead?"

    "Wha-what are you saying?! Who are you accusing of stalking, you creep!"

    "Well, I HAVE something to do." You tell them, "We're going to decide who will participate as the fourth representative of Sabage club in the relay race. Tanuma and Toyosaki will have a contest today."

    "Tanuma-kun will?"

    "Can we watch?"

    "Of course, cheer on them while you can too." You smirk at them.

    And so, you change into your PE uniform, which consists of a simple white cotton shirt and a red shorts.

    "You're here, Hachiman." Miyuki waves at you dressed the same.

    "What's this traitor doing here?" You ask Momo jokingly.

    "Who knows?" Momo shrugged, while a pale and withering Hongo beside her saying nothing. He's probably ragged both physically and mentally from spending several days with her like this.

    "While I know you're joking it kinda hurts to call your fellow club member traitor like this." Miyuki clenches his fist in frustration.

    "Awawawawa! President!" Kino screams like a fangirl (which she is), "Aren't Kaguya-sama with you today?"

    Indeed, Kose looks rather paranoid (or maybe excited) as she scans the field for the presence of enigmatic Ice Goddess.

    "We'll help them preparation later, but we have like one-hour free time for the moment." Miyuki answers, "She's probably with Secretary Fujiwara somewhere."

    You notice Ryuju release the cloth around her leg and Hongo, "I'll also help later, I feel bad for letting everyone doing the labor work."

    "Well, you helped us tremendously with the budget management though so don't feel too bad." Miyuki cheer her up, then hand her out a whistle, "Would you please be the referee?"

    "Sure!" Ryuju takes out a pair of pistol magazines and hands them out to Miyuki and you. "This will be the club's baton replacement."

    "It's a bit small, so handing them out is going to be tricky, but it's lightweight so it's easier to run with." Miyuki comments, "Lucky."

    "Speaking of which, what's the item that will be used by the Student Council?" You ask him.

    "Solid Gold Aguilette," Toyosaki scoffs, referring to the aiguillette that passed from President of the student council to their successor.

    "Yep, they're fucked." Both you and Ryuju say in perfect sync, the aiguillette is of a perfect size for baton replacement, but it's tremendously heavy. Meaning the Student Council already handicapped from the get-go in tomorrow's relay.

    Toyosaki probably knows this for a fact and that's why he's confident that we can win against the student council, which if you're not wrong, possess a greater amount of athleticism in total.

    "Alright then, let's wrap this crap." You take a deep breath and release it after warming up completely, "Tanuma, don't be to tense and believe in yourself."

    "Ah yes."

    There's something a little different with him today, but that's good, it seems that Tanuma is pretty psyched for today's selection.

    Toyosaki is confident too, but that's pretty expected.

    To simulate relay race, you and Miyuki run at the same pace around the field.

    "Hey, let's have a duel tomorrow, you and me. "Miyuki taunt you, "Do you dare?"

    "I'm not falling for that." You tell him, "The moment Fujiwara defected, the total abilities of the Student Council relay team shoot up considerably. We can bear to think about personal achievement anymore."

    "Psssh, coward." Miyuki makes an insulting face in response, "Well Fujiwara will compete in the all-girl club relay with the Tabletop Club, so our Auditing officer is taking over."

    As both of you go almost full speed, you see both Tanuma and Toyosaki waiting. However, that one second moment was all you need to turn things around. Tanuma didn't look at your direction, rather he's facing forward with his right hand going back. Toyosaki however, waits for Miyuki in anticipation and looks rather impatient.

    Ah.

    With an underhand pass from you, Tanuma managed to run full second ahead of Toyosaki who wastes his time changing his direction because he's facing backward before.

    It's clear that in overall running speed, Tanuma is inferior. But the difference isn't big enough and Toyosaki fails to catch up in the end. Tanuma finishes ahead of him by a mere half meters difference.

    "Shit!" Toyosaki screams in frustration.

    "I won!" Tanuma looks shaken himself, but for an entirely different reason. He probably can't believe that he won just like that. "Captain!"

    "Told you to play it smart." You make a pistol hand gesture in response.

    "Doing an underhand pass without training, I didn't expect you to have guts to do that." Toyosaki spat, "Well played, Tanuma."

    "Ah, I..." Tanuma blushes a bit, "To be honest, I'm really scared of failing but I decided to stop thinking and just believe that Captain will understand what I'm going to do."

    Toyosaki looks a little hurt by the realization. "I lost in more way than one."

    The reason he's lost, was because he didn't TRUST Miyuki to hand out the magazine via the underhand pass. He's treating a relay race like a solo endeavor, and that's why he lost to Tanuma. In all honesty, had you never meet Miyuki, you will probably end up like that too. Someone who's always bitter and doesn't trust people at all. In the past, you would laugh at the notion of teamwork being key to individual victories.

    Yet Tanuma managed to prove that's not really the case.

    You wonder how Toyosaki feels at the moment, his sole reason for joining the Survival Game club early on is gone now.

    "Alright then, to celebrate this occasion, I'll be super generous today and treat everyone." Shijo suddenly jumps in and offered, "And I mean everyone here."

    "Whoa, how nice." You deadpan, knowing very well she was just happy that Tanuma won this. Now, you absolutely sure, that Shijo is attracted to the meek boring guy. But thinking again, Tanuma is a nice guy, so just like you fall easily with a nice girl, Shijo probably had that kind of problem too.

    "Wait, me too?" Hongo finally regains his sanity and point at himself.

    "You're free today, but if you fool around too much and mess up tomorrow's race I'm going to kill you." Momo threatens him.

    "I swear upon my life I'll restrain myself, Ryuju-sama." Hongo makes an OK sign at her, and his face is completely and utterly serious.

    The hell? Did Ryuju make him a literal slave now? Did Hongo fail to stand up to her and got mind broken?

    "Alright then, you guys have fun." Miyuki and Ryuju excuse themselves.

    "Alright then, where should we go today?" Kino asks, "Anyone?"

    "Hikigaya-san, what about you?" Kashiwagi asks.

    "Huh, me?"

    Hmm, a good place where girls and boys can hang out without being too suspicious and on the nose... Shuchiin High uniform stands out too much around this area after all.

    [ ] Karaoke - Private atmosphere means not many prying eyes
    [ ] Bowling - A little public but also safe option
    [ ] Can't think of any
     
  27. Threadmarks: Chapter 4.5
    ZeroXSEED

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    [X] Karaoke - Private atmosphere means not many prying eyes
    No. of Votes: 19
    TriGayatri
    Achagoya0072
    bastur2
    BB54
    blakekeane
    Caladcholg
    Cane Toad
    CookieSideUser
    Cuchulin
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    Drey
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    Kieron
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    Yveski

    [X] Bowling - A little public but also safe option
    No. of Votes: 1
    CloLag01

    Total No. of Voters: 20

    "Would karaoke be fine with you?" You ask rather innocently because you have no hidden intent behind it. A large group of Shuchiin students hanging out together in uniform will get too much attention in public and karaoke is perfect to mitigate that.

    You feel a strong slap on the shoulder courtesy of Toyosaki, and he raises a thumb.

    "Karaoke is fine." He says with a perverted grin. Dude, you're making your intent obvious...

    Then again after his crushing defeat in the hand of Tanuma, he kind of deserve the break. Better than him moping around.

    "I just know a good place." Shijo makes a dramatic pose as she pulls out her smartphone and makes a call to book it. "And done."

    "Shijo-san, you don't have to treat us you know." Tanuma looks rather embarrassed and tells her.

    "Oh shut it, I'm just treating my friends and you just happen to be here, that's all." Shijo blush and chides, hiding her shame. "Leaving you out would be rather pitiful, no?"

    Harsh. Also, didn't Shijo says before it WAS to celebrate for Tanuma's victory? Tsundere character sure is a gigantic pain in real life. Then again, Tanuma does have the upbringing of a typical harem protagonist.

    Just like now, Tanuma only smiles in the face of Shijo's verbal abuse and dismissal. Perhaps he has a bunch of girls interested in him somewhere you didn't notice.

    Hmm, wouldn't that make you the side character to oblivious harem MC? Realizing that makes you want to laugh.

    Normally one goes to the Karaoke after the main event, the so-called after-party which is the favorite of normies, but no one willing to say that out loud, as the girls seem to be stressed out today, and the boys either don't care (you), oblivious (Tanuma) or too eager (Toyosaki).

    "Kara-Para near the station is famous even among Shuchiin students." Kino prances excitedly, "This is basically an elite school networking hub."

    "Is that so?"

    Looking at the inside, it's not exceptionally luxurious and even the price tag isn't too shocking for the standard of Karaoke in Tokyo. Sure it's cheaper in Chiba, but that's logical.

    The proximity to Shuchiin definitely is the main selling point.

    "We're chartering the big room cus there are a lot of us."

    As expected of #2 richest girl in First-Year Shuchiin high, she didn't even hesitate to shell out that much money. But just how dense is Tanuma not to notice with how blatant Shijo shows her affection like this?

    The big karaoke room in this place isn't a joke indeed, there are two tables surrounded by comfy leather seats, a lot of room to move around and even it's own mini-stage.

    For eight people, it MIGHT be a little too big.

    "One more guy and this will be a mixer." Toyosaki hums, he really, really super into this huh? You really don't want to rain on his parade, but Toyosaki might cause an irreversible problem with his mistaken assumption.

    "Those girls barely see us as men, so don't be too hopeful and enjoy what's in front of you as it is." You smirk, "If they were to think of this as a mixer, they'll be more embarrassed about it."

    "Captain, I don't know how you can be so confident yet so pessimistic." Toyosaki pouts in disappointment, "Your existence is made of contradiction."

    "I am confident because I know my own value as a man." You respond, "That way I won't have an unreasonable expectation, especially when it comes to relationships between boys and girls."

    "To be fair, Captain is the guy who managed to stand up to Ryuju-sama." Hongo shivers when he's imagining the previous training.

    You ask him, "What do you think about Ryuju, Hongo?"

    "This might sound rude, but... she doesn't feel like a girl at all." Hongo rubs his chin, somewhat conflicted. "Like, yeah, she's world-class beauty with very few to compare, her boobs above average and boy, let's not start with her hips... but her absolute lack of care is just weird."

    Ryuju has absolutely, positively zero hesitation with physical contact with boys close to her, and Hongo isn't an exception to the rule.

    Ryuju doesn't flaunt her sexuality at all, but unless someone is being insulting or making a big fuss about it, you COULD stare at her in underwear, and get away with it. You've done that once by accident, and pretty sure the same with Miyuki when we have a sleepover.

    Boys' instincts are hardwired and conditioned to recognize that such an absolute blatant lack of shame and femininity is a turnoff.

    "Hey, boys over there, what are you whispering about?" Shijo points at you like the bitchy boss she is, "We're ordering food and drinks now if you want anything then say it now."

    "Unless they have Kvass to offer, just give me an iced coffee, extra sweet." You shamelessly answer.

    "I'll have a grape juice, thank you." Toyosaki put a calmer front and tell her.

    "Orange juice is fine by me." Hongo request.

    "Tanuma-kun, what do you want?"

    "Umm, I'm fine with whatever, really."

    Wow, indecisive much?

    "What do you mean whatever, hmph."

    And you, too, please stop.

    "Ahhh, I can't hold it anymore. I'm going to be the first one to sing." Kose shouts as she grabs the mic, "I need more Kaguya-sama!"

    "Yaaay, she snaps." Shijo shrug while Kashiwagi looks almighty concerned.

    "Eit, let's make this a little more challenging!" Kino snaps her fingers and then makes an extremely unsexy seductive pose, "No currently trending pop song is allowed. Unless it's like, anime opening or ending."

    "It has to be anime?" Kashiwagi looks rather worried, "Can it be something else?"

    "Anything that's a niche! The more embarrassing the better."

    Holy shit, Kino is a sadist for sure. These three girls had absolutely, positively no sign of being otaku at all. You, on the other hand, couldn't be smugger.

    "You underestimated my abilities, you shallow, shipping obsessed girl!" Kose picks a piece of music to sing, "Behold!"

    And so, Kose sings beautifully, accompanying her is an extremely archaic 80s slow daft punk music. The story of a woman being left behind by her lover and drowning herself in superficial entertainment, fashion, and romantic flings to cope with her sadness.



    The lyrics itself was timeless, but the type of music that breathes life into it? Plastic Love, 1984 by Takeuchi Mariya. You're legitimately impressed. By the standard of your generation, that's practically a granny song.

    Of course, there's also the fact that it's getting more fan arrangements and covers since last year. So it's not extremely niche in overall context if Kose caught the trend in the right moment. Kose is a purebred Japanese girl, through and through, her obsession with Shinomiya aside, she's truly a capable beauty.

    "I win, now who's going to go next?" Kose proudly asks.

    Tanuma legitimately impressed and clapping alongside both Kashiwagi and Shijo, in contrast, Toyosaki looks super depressed now.

    The reality that the girls didn't even bother concealing themselves or pretending to be reserved makes it clear that expecting anything romantic out of this event is fool's errand.

    "Told you, dude." You remind him.

    In a fit of rage, Toyosaki ended up singing Bump of Chicken with all his heart's content, spilling out his frustration.

    There's really nothing special in this Karaoke event, everyone just sings as they want, even if it's embarrassing. In Kashiwagi and Shijo's case, they end up singing the first Pretty Cure's Opening.

    It just happens to be one of your favorite little girl cartoon shows, not that you will let them know yet.

    And now it comes to your turn.



    Natsu no Dilemma is the story of a boy who desperately wants to prove his dignity and reliability as a man, however, he always chickens out at the last second, or his lover would take the initiative and going on the offensive, making him embarrassed.

    Such a sweet, disgustingly cringe romantic story isn't something that you have personally experienced. However, you can still see part of you in the main character. Plus, he kind of resembles Miyuki, who always bluff and put a tough front in the face of public attention.

    Coupled with 7/10 decent voice, the minor talent of musicality you acquire from your father and mother, and secondhand training you receive as you watch over Komachi's training in the past, you can sing it well enough that there shouldn't be any difference with the original.

    "Wow, you can sing really well, Captain!" Tanuma practically jumps off his seat, whilst clapping loudly.

    "Well, of course, his father is a Nation-famous Idol Producer after all." Toyosaki scoff.

    ...Since when he found that out? Did the bastard literally investigate everyone in the club and their background? Also, don't blabber it so recklessly you bastard.

    "Something like that, I guess." You shrug, "I'm going to the bathroom fo a bit."

    And so you go to the bathroom to relieve yourself and wash your face a bit. When you come out, Shijo is there waiting for you.

    "What is it, Shijo?" You grin, "You want to bitch about Tanuma or something?"

    "Wha? What's that supposed to mean?!"

    So funny!

    "Whatever." You walk past her, but then stopped when she suddenly says.

    "I just don't want to see him turning bad." She desperately wants her voice to come out as strong, but she sounds like a dying kitten instead. Weak. "Because he's hanging out with the likes of you and Ryuju."

    You can feel a small bit of anger and bafflement seeping through your vein, all the way to your head. You know she didn't mean to say it that harshly, but even so...

    "The likes of me and Ryuju huh." You turn back and glares at her, "So what do you want? Making me kick him out of the club?"

    "NO! Even now, in this last week, Tanuma worked so hard. So please!" She closes her eyes desperately as she yanks the end of your sleeve. "Don't kick him out of the club! His effort will be in vain!"

    Tsundere is a real pain to deal with, and you absolutely have no patience in dealing with her kind.

    "I have no intention to do such things." You pull your arm away in disgust, "But if you're that concerned, then drag him out yourself. Not my fucking problem."

    Unexpectedly, or maybe as expected, Shijo began to shrink in fear as she closes her ear, whilst shaking. "That's not what I mean!"

    "Then speak more clearly. Not everyone is obligated to follow your bullshit, then expected to feel bad when they misunderstand your intent and hurt you."

    Frankly, you think you understand that Shijo didn't mean harm with it. Even so, it's normal to be so irrational. After all, you're just human and have your own emotional vulnerabilities.

    Shijo seems to be the type that got spoiled because of everyone in her circle letting her doing so, treating her with kiddy gloves all the time. Shijo dishes out insult regularly but can't take a hit for shit, and she always got away with it due to her family position, and because Shijo is a vulnerable cute girl.

    This is something that Ryuju taught not just you, but also Miyuki. Don't let others look down at you. And Shijo family or not, you're not going to let her look down on you, Ryuju, and Miyuki.

    Shijo clenches her teeth as if she completely at a loss about what to say. This might be the first time someone, especially someone outside her circle, drives her back into an inescapable corner.

    Talking to her like this would be a waste of time.

    "What do you think I should do?" She asks you quietly.

    "Maybe start by learning how to say 'sorry' and 'thank you'." Your face softening slightly, "Thank you today for treating me to a nice session of Karaoke, Shijo."

    Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. A simple apology and thanks can keep away an inevitable downfall. Just like her relative and rival, Shinomiya Kaguya, Shijo Maki's pride will be the end of her someday.

    At the very least, you feel you should tell her as much.

    "...You, welcome." Shijo blush and avert her eyes aside, "And sorry."

    See? You can do it too, Shijo!

    Admittedly, words alone can't always solve everything. People lie all the time, and what they spoke is different than what they do and what they think. Even so, any relationship started with a lie, will always end up in ruins.

    "Tanuma-kun is always kind and understanding. Even if I say something a little harsh, he'll just brush it off and smile like always." Shijo looks like she's holding back her tears badly, "He's really easygoing, and I feel like I can be calm with him around."

    "Tanuma Tsubasa is a really warm and gentle person, and I'm afraid that he will change." Shijo sobs, "But at the same time I feel so inspired looking at him putting so much effort to improve himself."

    So selfish and immature, yet, you can't help but understand her pain and insecurities. A tsundere girl needs the dense protagonist by her side, otherwise, her entire personhood will fall apart. Does Tanuma deserve that? You don't know.

    "I think we should go back before everyone gets worried." You tell her.

    "Yes."

    ...

    "Speaking of which, Hikigaya-san, do you cook often?" Kose asks when you and Shijo return and Kose just happened to be sitting nearby.

    "I cook every day unless someone cooks for me or buy something for me." You tell her, "I live alone in Tokyo."

    "Wha, really? Where did you come from?"

    "Chiba."

    "Amazing."

    "Yukino-san also comes from Chiba isn't she?" Shijo asks.

    "Yeah, I guess that's how we got to know each other even though we're in a different class."

    In all honesty, you used to feel some semblance of attraction to her when you meet each other and you started talking with her. But whether it's intellectual or sexual attraction, it was sure as hell not romantic.

    But if nothing else, you and Yukinoshita understood each other well and that's more than good enough.

    "I see, then it would be very helpful." Kose picks something out of her bag, "I was hesitant at first but now I'm convinced you should have this."

    It's a half kilogram bag of factory-packed miso paste.

    "What is this?"

    "This is a Genmai Miso, a new product of our company that's about to enter the market next week."

    Genmai Miso is a type of miso fermented from brown rice as opposed to white rice of white and yellow miso. It has a unique nutty flavor and relatively recent in terms of invention. Genmai Miso apparently getting popular in the American sphere too, so perhaps Kose's company aims for the international market?

    "So I'd like to hear early impression from someone who cooks regularly, especially since boys who cook every day at this age is a rarity."

    Ah.

    [ ] "Thanks, I'll try it."
    [ ] "You should give Miyuki one too."
    [ ] "You can make miso for me every day." (Joke)
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
  28. Threadmarks: Chapter 5
    ZeroXSEED

    ZeroXSEED Closet Pervert

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    [X] "Thanks, I'll try it."
    No. of Votes: 9
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    [X] "You should give Miyuki one too."
    No. of Votes: 5
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    [X] "You can make miso for me every day." (Joke)
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    Total No. of Voters: 18

    "Thanks, I'll try it later for dinner." You smile at Kose for her generosity.

    "Don't forget to mail me the details." She insists, "Actually, can you give me your LINE contact? It's kind of hard talking through e-mail freely, not to mention phone calling would be expensive."

    Really? Does a non-scholarships Shuchiin student care about the Mobile call fee? Joking aside, it's entirely understandable considering how extremely low-cost VoIP based call is, compared to the conventional phone call.

    Plus you just KNOW that once girls started talking, they, just, don't, STOP. It's a vast improvement over your experience being eternally ignored in Middle School but still...

    "Fine then." You show up the QR code of your contact on the screen.

    Not just Kose, but everyone in the room decides to get your LINE contact, seeing as you're with everyone on an E-mail basis before, and they probably find it not as convenient.

    And of all sudden, your contact list gets filled to the brim, more than ever. You almost shed tears.

    Of all sudden your phone starts to vibrate, there's a call from a certain devilish little sister. "Hello, Komachi? You're on your way here?"

    "[Ah, Onii-chan, I already arrived at Mejiro Station.]"

    "I'm in KaraPara near the station, I'll pick you up there."

    "[KaraPara? Isn't that Karaoke? Are you with someone?]"

    "A bunch of boys in my clubs and few girls from the same electives." You tell her, "Why?"

    "[Woah, don't come! I'll be there in a minute then!]"

    Komachi hurriedly shut off the call, which confuses you a bit. Still, Komachi did arrive soon enough with knowing grin on her face. "Yeah, I will never expect I'll see the days Onii-chan going to the Karaoke with someone outside the family."

    "How cruel."

    "Who is it, Hikigaya-san?"

    "It's my little sister." You introduce her as you make a room for Komachi to walk inside. "Hikigaya Komachi."

    "Yahallo, my name is Hikigaya Komachi, nice to meet you!"

    "Whoa, cute!" Hongo approaches her and asks, "Are you in middle school?"

    "I'm a second-year middle school now!"

    The arrival of Komachi brings newfound energy among the high school students as if they find a new toy or mascot. Nevertheless, Komachi is considerably more mature than some of them and manages to wrestle back the narrative.

    Leave it to Komachi to make instant friends anywhere she come to. Shijo even asks for an hour extension just so the girls can talk more with your sister.

    All in all, you can't help but happy with it.

    CHAPTER 5

    And so it comes, the long-awaited Shuchiin athletic festival. In high spirit, the students opened the event with student oath being read by none other than your best friend, Shirogane Miyuki.

    You can see the dark, enigmatic presence Shinomiya Kaguya behind him. Those two are the source of admiration and envy of many other students in this school.

    Immediately afterward, a Japanese traditional dance event being held. Miyuki was there as well.

    And finally, the First-year Boy's 100m Sprint, which Miyuki won... against multiple opponents each of them easily qualifies for national athletic meetings. Sometimes you feel like your very standard of judgment is warped against yourself and people close to you.

    Miyuki isn't just an academic ace after all, was there any wonder why everyone would shower him with praises?

    "Damn it. I lost badly." Hongo screams.

    "If you're that frustrated, you better train your ass until the next festival." Ryuju tells him, "Shirogane is a talentless hack whose only value is hard work, he's holding that number one banner by swimming in the river of his sweat and blood."

    "I assume that's metaphorical but with Ryuju-sama I can't be sure." Hongo looks away in terror.

    "Well, I don't think anyone can work as hard as him without breaking apart either way." You say in Hongo's defense, "Miyuki's mind is very twisted, you see."

    As for Ryuju... she won 100m Girl's sprint, first-year category. The race itself was very tight, with the first three people being inhumanly fast for the standard of high school girls. Not Just Shuchiin, but the nation as a whole.

    The two girls who were only hair away behind Ryuju were none other than Shinomiya and Yukinoshita. It was only through luck that Ryuju managed to win.

    "My speed and Shinomiya should be an exact match, so the club relay would be a difficult fight." Ryuju sigh.

    "No use crying before fighting." You snap your finger stylishly, "Alright then, time for the Obstacle race and wish me luck."

    The Obstacle course is comprised of several courses. The first one is the so-called sack race, where you put the lower half of the body in a cloth sack and then moving by jumping. In your opinion, this is the most difficult part of the entire obstacle race due to universal handicap applies to everyone.

    However, the second one is when things start to get interesting.

    Balance beam walking.

    For the average people, walking on the balance beam is hard enough, but for you? No, not at all hard. All that parkour action with Momo through abandoned factory complexes makes this one a child's play.

    So you run, almost half the speed, on the beam without afraid of falling. You can just tell the shocked the audience is. The key to moving across a balance beam is to ensure footing grip while at the same time keeping forward momentum.

    The slower you are, the more unstable your footing will be.

    You finish the section long before anyone else even reaches halfway and you immediately followed by the caterpillar race, followed by candy fishing out of flour, also called Ame-Kui for short.

    Needless to say, it's a curb stomp match and you grab your number one flag before everyone else can finish the race.

    "Wow, Captain is beyond amazing." Tanuma looks like he's out of breath, you notice he's carrying Flag number 5. Which means at the very least he's not a dead last in this race.

    "You're good too." You punch his shoulder softly.

    "Onii-chan!" Komachi runs toward you with a towel in hand, "You're super amazing!"

    You notice the presence of a taller girl behind Komachi, seemingly restless as she gives you a bottle of warm sports drink. Her crystalline blue eyes stared your own. "Umm, Hachi-nii, congratulations."

    "Oh, Kei you came to watch. Thanks, both of you." You wipe your sweat with the towel a bit and drink some of the content, "Have you congratulated Miyuki too?"

    "I have, Kei-chan is being stubborn though." Komachi rolls her eyes teasingly.

    Indeed, this girl is none other than Miyuki's little sister, Shirogane Kei. Despite being younger than Komachi by almost half a year, Kei looks way older than she is. Most people would assume she's at least 14 years old.

    "Uh."

    Even though we spent summer vacation together, she's still being shy around her big brother huh. You pat Kei's head gently.

    "I'm very sure Miyuki is happy enough to know you're watching." You tell her earnestly, "But are you fine with just that?"

    "Ah."

    Kei looks super conflicted too, but in the end, she gives up. "I'll see Miyuki-nii first, I'll cheer for you in the Scavenger race too."

    "Onii-chan is too nice, but I guess that's why Kei-chan likes so much."

    "I like Kei-chan too." You confidently smile, "I always thought it would be nice to have two little sisters, plus our family is pretty close anyway."

    You notice the presence of a blond man talking with your father and mother, it's none other than Shirogane Papa. When they notice your attention, your father raises a thumb while your mother waves.

    Oh well, at least they pay attention this time. What's this strange warm fuzzy feeling inside though? It's rather embarrassing and uncomfortable!

    "...Onii-chan you're totally beyond help." Komachi shrugs, with a hint of heavy disappointment on her face.

    "Shut it, and let me enjoy my rotten youth in peace."

    Scavenger Race!

    Of all races, this one generally considered the least serious. Depends on the items needed for completion, things can get hilarious. In fiction, for example, one of the common items required for the completion is "A person you like".

    Real-life isn't going to be that blatant, the Sports Festival Committee will get lynched.

    And so you pick up your paper from the mystery box.

    [Senpai]

    Who the fuck wrote this shit? This is very obviously biased against loners! A normie would have it easy in this particular scenario, but not you.

    How many Senpai you even know personally?

    [ ] The Former President (Very Hard)
    A mysterious, strange but handsome guy that approached you before, asked you to join the Student Council but you rejected his offer. Finding him will be a pain in the ass though.


    [ ] Mass Media Club President (Hard)
    The President of Mass media Club, logically the best choice since you're already somewhat friendly with her. But she's rather plain and hard to find.


    [ ] Saionji Kotoka (Easy)
    Daughter of Saionji Zaibatsu group, a big sponsor of your father's Production office and she's also one of his idols. Your father probably will be delighted if you get to know her better, and she stood out enough and easy to find.
     
  29. Threadmarks: Chapter 5.1
    ZeroXSEED

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    [x] Saionji Kotoka (Easy)
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    [X] Mass Media Club President (Hard)
    No. of Votes: 2
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    [x] The Former President (Very Hard)
    No. of Votes: 1
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    Total No. of Voters: 16

    Though you're not fully comfortable with it you decided to settle with finding Saionji daughter in the crowd. Even though she's slightly shorter than average girls, her long pink hair and distinct eyebrows make her easy to spot.

    "Saionji-senpai, I'm producer Hikigaya's son, could I please ask for some help?" You ask her as you show her the request paper.

    "Ah, I remember, you're Hikigaya Hachiman-kun, isn't it?" She politely smiles, "Let's go!"

    Being idol and all, you decide against holding her hand or wrist and instead let her dictate the pace of running for you. However, Saionji wasn't content with running the girly way and sprinting full speed!

    Unfortunately, a tall senpai named Kazeno blitz off at the last second, while holding a hat.

    "Huh."

    You end up in second place.

    "I'm sorry, it's because I'm so slow." Saionji profusely apologizes.

    "Umm, not at all, Senpai runs at full speed, it's just that Kazeno guy being way too fast himself."

    Even if you're carrying an item as opposed to bringing a person, it's unlikely that you can win against the tall, muscular athlete Senpai with that kind of timing. Scavenger run is all about luck, more than even observation ability. Still, you can do worse than getting a second place, so it's still lucky.

    "Too bad Hachiman." Father approach you with a kind-looking middle-aged man in tow.

    "Ah, good Morning Producer Hikigaya." Saionji-senpai bows at him elegantly, "You came as well, father."

    "I just happen to have free time today, so I can attend the events full time." The middle-aged man said, "This might be the first time we meet, Hikigaya, uh, Hachiman-kun."

    Indeed, it's none other than Mr. Saionji, the leader of the Saionji group, and probably one of the richest men in Japan.

    "Nice to meet you, Saionji-san. Just Hachiman is fine." You also bow politely to him, "I'm sorry for causing a commotion with picking Senpai as an item."

    You hand out the paper to him, which makes the man laugh incessantly. "It's fine, it's fine. I always hoped you two can get along well anyway."

    ?

    After spending like ten minutes talking with everyone, Saionji Kotoka-senpai excused herself as she had to attend an event, the ball-tossing ones. As this is a large group event it's very hard to gauge which sides going to win anyway.

    "What event you're going to join next, Hachiman-kun?"

    "Ah, it's the club relay race at the end." You answer him.

    You don't feel the need to butter up to the Saionji patriarch even though he's Father's biggest sponsor and a good friend of his boss. Simple politeness like treating a friend of your parents should be good enough. Compared to that? Your father brags about you so much that you want to run away in shame, so you kick him on his shin in anger to make him stop.

    Ryuju returns from the ball-tossing event with Saionji-senpai in tow, though their group lost the match as well, Ryuju doesn't seem to be disappointed.

    "Ball tossing is all about laughing on the clumsy people anyway, so it's fine for me." Ryuju's mouth keeps twitching, clearly holding her laughter. Girl, you're being too cruel here.

    "But it's really fun isn't it?" Saionji-senpai smiles happily.

    "Hmm, who is that?" Your father asked.

    "Hmm, if I'm not mistaken, it's the daughter of the Ryuju group." Mr. Saionji noted.

    You can tell your father's very soul is halfway leaving his body before you smack his back and bring him back to earth again.

    "Momo-chin, too bad about it." A man dressed in a glossy suit approaches the group with a murderous grin, a large scar running down his left eye down his chin, and few smaller scars around his right side of the head. "But I saw the obstacle race, Hachiman you're one cool scoundrel."

    "Ah, nice to meet you again." You bow at him, "This is Ryuju-san, I'm close friend with his daughter Ryuju Momo."

    "Hmm? Oh, if it's Saionji-san, and is this..." The Yakuza boss mutter.

    "My father, you can just call him Producer Hikigaya." You introduce him.

    The kids decided to bail the moment Papa Shirogane also join the conversation. In passing, you're sure you're hearing that Ryuju boss talks with your father about one of his AV production are accepting 'failed' idols as well. Those who can't make it to the professional celebrity world after 'graduating' as an idol, but unwilling to let go of their fame and decided to enter the sex industry instead.

    Your father despises the fact, but recognize that's it's inevitable. There's always the darkness surrounding the limelight, and the light of an idol is not eternal. The least he could do is to ensure they can be treated well by the porn studios and companies, and you know very well that your father is hardcore enough that he will commit murder if that's what needed to protect them.

    Ryuju group, being a massive conglomeration of organized crime, of course, have a lot of unsavory business under their banner. However, at that size, most of their wealth would still come from legal or semi-legal business, and the monopoly of the porn industry in the Tokyo metropolis is one of them.

    You wonder if your father would try to get closer to him to make sure his former idols are in safe hands. Or he'll do the opposite, and he'll try to drive a wedge between you and Ryuju. Hopefully not the latter, you owe Ryuju a lot.

    Speaking of Ryuju, the three-legged race was legitimately amazing. with perfect coordination, they manage to stretch Ryuju's stride length to near-maximum level, allowing for them to achieve the speed that literally no boy-girl three-legged pair can even dream of.

    It's a miracle that they managed to win the first place by the skin of their teeth.

    It's clear that it's not just Tanuma who gets faster, but Hongo definitely improved as well. Not in the sense of raw speed, but definitely in control and timing.

    "Bow before me peasant!" Ryuju screams aloud as she raises the number 1 flag high while being carried by the girls of your class, "Another victory for Sabage club and class 1-D! Whoooooo!"

    Meanwhile, Hongo dabs on the seething male participants, some of them from the athletic club. For them to be beaten by the famous serial boyfriend with a handicap of a girl as a partner, it must be super humiliating.

    And finally, there's the climactic event that's club relay. This time, even though they're from a different class, Tanuma and Toyosaki join you, Hongo and Ryuju.

    "According to my calculation, it's best to start with Captain, followed by Tanuma, Hongo and then Ryuju-san as an anchor," Toyosaki informs you.

    "I disagree." Ryuju says, "The more common professional strategy means it's best with Tanuma as the third runner and Hongo second."

    Both Toyosaki and Ryuju were correct, in a sense that they have different priorities to their strategy arrangement.

    Honestly, you're somewhat biased toward Toyosaki in this regard, since Momo is demanding a higher standard from everyone, and picking Toyosaki's strategy means he's at least somewhat involved in the relay race, if indirectly.

    Either way, you'll be definitely the first runner, and if your own estimation is correct, Miyuki will also be the first runner representing the student council.

    [ ] Toyosaki's suggestion
    This strategy is a lot more common in middle school and high school relay race.
    [ ] Ryuju's suggestion
    This strategy is a lot more common in college and professional relay race.
     
  30. Threadmarks: Chapter 5.2
    ZeroXSEED

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    Vote Tally : The Council's Road, Not Taken (Kaguya-sama/Oregairu Spinoff) | Page 23 | Questionable Questing
    ##### NetTally 1.6.0

    [x] Toyosaki's suggestion
    No. of Votes: 11
    Cane Toad
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    CookieSideUser
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    HipoSlime
    Kravenmato
    ScarletCloud
    TriGayatri
    Yveski

    [X] Ryuju's suggestion
    No. of Votes: 5
    DamnedAeons 187
    Achagoya0072
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    Total No. of Voters: 16

    "Let's go with Toyosaki's strategy." You decide, "This strategy is used commonly for a very good reason, plus, regardless of our inferiority in physical abilities, we have the advantage of teamwork."

    "Teamwork?" Tanuma asks.

    "Remember there's a giant rift between the upperclassman and first years of Student Council. As much as they're forcing it, they can't work as smoothly as us." You point, "This isn't a gamble so much as a logical observation."

    "I can see that, but it's not 100% sure thing," Ryuju argues.

    "Even if that's the case, remember that you work together the most with Hongo, so your combination would be the best for the second half of the race."

    "True."

    "Listen, in terms of pure running, I can never beat Miyuki, so don't be shaken by the fact that I might come late." You advise Tanuma, "Instead, focus on an underhand pass that will require absolute trust between members. This is why I decide you as the second runner, Tanuma."

    "YES!"

    "Hongo, you will be our most important link in this race. Any momentum lost caused by me and Tanuma, only you can deal with it. Ryuju and Shinomiya are perfectly equal with each other, so whether we win or lose will be decided solely by the third race."

    "Alright then." Hongo slaps his face to psyche up. "I'm ready."

    "Well, there's also the fact that the object they carry is heavier than ours." Toyosaki opens his eyes, "Solid gold aiguillette is not a joke, I estimate it should weight somewhere between 300 to 400 grams."

    "Right, this is our best weapon against them as well." You raise the MP5 magazine in your hand, "This is heavier than the previous pistol magazine we use, but not by much, and it's longer thus easier to hold onto. Remember the key phrase is Reload."

    How much difference it will make? You don't know, but it's better than nothing.

    For example, the group with the biggest handicap in the race is the athletic club, as they have to carry a women shot put (4 kg iron ball), while the group with the least handicap is the disciplinary committee and their armband of authority.

    Speaking of which, the Public Service Club managed to win the girls category of Club and Committee relay race as expected. Yukinoshita and Shijo combination is simply unfair for the rest.

    "Congratulations." You tell Yukinoshita when the two groups meet.

    Shijo flicks her ponytail (?), "Hmph, that's just as expected. I hope you're not holding back everyone, Tanuma."

    "Ahahaha, I can't promise anything." Tanuma, in his usual display of density, just laugh foolishly in response. And yet it doesn't seem like he's under pressure from Shijo's usual bitching.

    "That's why you can have this." Shijo gives out a charm made of folding paper. "It's made of our notebook, so maybe we can sprinkle some of our godly luck on you."

    The notebook must be the item they use in the relay.

    "Thanks." Tanuma looks at it and then put it in his pocket innocently, "Too bad it will be destroyed in the race."

    From all the sweats of course.

    Shijo blush and smack him, "I can always make you a new one! Hmph."

    "Please don't waste paper for such purpose, Shijo-san. It's bad for the environment, you need to learn to sew a proper one out of cloth next time." Yukinoshita smiles, but it's crystal clear she just shit talked her club member.

    "No, this is more than good enough. Thank you Shijo-san, and wish me luck." Tanuma left with an innocent smile.

    You can just hear people in the background cursing him. "You dense motherfucker!"

    You can't help but agree.

    "Fight hard, Hikigaya-san." Kashiwagi clenches her fist at you in encouragement.

    "Please don't make me embarrassed as someone from the same prefecture." Yukinoshita teased, "At the very least, running is all you can do properly, right?"

    "Big talk from someone who derailed the obstacle race, Snow Woman." You say in response as you leave, "Next time you enter caterpillar race you should bring a compass."

    Yukinoshita has a staggeringly bad sense of direction, that her high-speed caterpillar veered off the course despite having a massive advantage in traversing balance beam.

    Granted, it still wins her second place. She managed to recover quickly in Ame-Kui thanks to her insane running speed, but it was a hilarious show nevertheless.

    "I have no excuse for that one." Yukino twitches in response but manages to keep her smile. "Good luck."

    As your club members face off against the student council, you and Miyuki walk one step closers and exchange a handshake.

    "I'm going to kick your ass, Hachiman," Miyuki says.

    "Feel free to try, loser." You tell him.

    "Now THIS is going to make a headline," Kino screams as she takes a myriad of pictures from all angles.

    "Ahem." Kose loudly declares, "Mass Media Club stands proudly behind the student council!"

    "OOOH!!"

    Not entirely unexpected, you just hope they can at least write less biased articles later. Anyway, from what you can see... the other clubs are pretty much irrelevant in this race, either due to unfit members or massive handicaps.

    "Stay on your position!"

    You, Miyuki and all the other first runners picked the assigned lanes earned from the raffle. You managed to get lane 2, which thankfully can be mitigated by Momo (as lane 1 and 2 have sharper turns). The student council earned lane 4, which is more balanced and ideal.

    Putting Tanuma as the second runner turns out to be the fitting choice, as he's the shortest of the boys in the club. Still, the student council has a field advantage.

    It doesn't matter.

    "READY!"

    "SET!"

    "GO!"

    You rush forward as fast as you can, without paying attention to the other opponents. Focus on one thing, and one thing only.

    "RELOAD!" You scream, "RELOAD!"

    And Tanuma runs with his hand behind him, with you passing your magazine to him. The Student Council's General Affairs Manager is ahead of him, but you hope that Tanuma can remember your words.

    "Don't think, don't feel, just do it. Tanuma."

    And so Tanuma manages to pass the magazine to Hongo safely, who immediately sprint at max speed, catching up to the Council's Audit officer with ease.

    It seems that the aiguillette is, indeed, a massive handicap!

    This is the last section.

    Ryuju!

    "RELOAD! RELOAD!"

    The last section of the race plays like a slow-motion recording in front of your eyes. Ryuju manages to catch up with Shinomiya down to the last meter and...

    Draw?

    Even though it happens right in front of you, that can't be anything but draw, since Shinomiya and Ryuju made a perfectly straight line on the finish line.

    Even the referees become all quiet.

    "Who won?"

    "It has to be Kaguya-sama right?"

    "I'm not sure, Ryuju seems to be a bit ahead."

    "No, I'm pretty sure that was a draw."

    "That's definitely a draw."

    The murmur of the spectator becomes increasingly louder until Shinomiya steals a mic and knock it to get everyone's attention.

    How bold.

    "[Ryuju-san won.]" She speaks aloud.

    ...Wait.

    "What? Shinomiya threw in the towel? Why?"

    "But if she says so."

    "[Umm, based on slow-motion recording us referees can conclude that Ryuju Momo of the class 1-D is, in fact, the winner of this Club and Committee relay race.]"

    From what you can tell, Ryuju is just as dumbfounded and freeze at the announcement.

    "Umm, please excuse me, Shinomiya-san." Mass Media Club president approach her.

    "No pictures please." Shinomiya glares at Kino who is about to take a picture for an interview. "Or else."

    That implied threat in her words is very, very chilling. Kino almost drops her camera and someone has to catch it. Kose who's trying to sneak a picture from a distance also passes out completely, both out of admiration and fear.

    "Umm, why do you say Ryuju-san won this race? Most people think it's a draw."

    "Certainly, we're running shoulder to shoulder till the end. And in a sense, our physical abilities are perfectly equal, however." Shinomiya says with a completely deadpan smile, "I admit the difference in our body is staggering."

    "The difference in your body?"

    "Ah." Ryuju finally realize why she won, "My boobs touched the ribbon first."

    "..."

    The entire area becomes completely quiet. No one wants to say anything, because Shinomiya or Ryuju, or even both, might just murder them. Probably literally too, and they don't want to risk it. But at least they know the truth, and that's why the referee declared Ryuju the winner. Ryuju with her C+ cup beat Kaguya with her maybe A cup.

    "[Ahem.]" The Festival committee awkwardly continues, "[Let's move to the next race.]"

    Everyone pretty much agrees not to talk about THIS race in detail.

    "Well, a victory is a victory." You try to cheer her up.

    You can tell that Ryuju was dissatisfied with the race conclusion. Whereas Shinomiya accepts her defeat graciously because she's stickler for principles, Ryuju has a very twisted sense of honor.

    "Honestly, losing is probably better than this crap." Ryuju pouts, "Shinomiya's smug-ass face pretty much says it all, if we're going to have another race, she has absolute confidence of winning next time. And it pisses me off."

    "Look at the bright side, it proves that you're still physically superior to Shinomiya." Hongo points out.

    Everyone looks at him with disgust, and you hand out a slipper so Momo can slap the back of his head as punishment.

    Repeatedly.

    "You know what, maybe you're right." Momo looks at the slipper, then smiles. "Fuck it, let's go celebrate. I still have to help Student Council tidying things up, but we should still have a lot of free time, I'll drag Shirogane with me even if it takes an arm and a leg to do so."

    Hongo winks at you, it seems that he purposely makes Ryuju mad so she can let go of her pent up frustration. What a cool guy!

    "But where are we going to celebrate?" Tanuma asks, "I'd like anything but going to karaoke if possible."

    Your parents said they decide to attend an expensive dinner with a bunch of 'new acquaintances' from Shuchiin, while Komachi and Kei play somewhere with Kei's friends before going back to Chiba with you later since Mother will have a night flight for business travel.

    So if nothing else you should have a few hours left to spend.

    Hmmm.

    [ ] Restaurant is easier.
    [ ] Cook for everyone, it's cheaper.
     
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