I’m Spying on the Heroine in an Otome Game World 1123 min read
Volume 1 | Chapter 3: May – Part 5
When two people join hands to clean up a room, the time required will cut in half. Since I was helping her anyways, I decided to lend a hand in moving equipment to the student council room as well.
“Tanaka-senpai, will you be retiring after this student council election as well?”
Slowly and steadily, we walked as I struck up a conversation. This doesn’t have to do with anything, but what kind of person leaves the task of moving equipment all to one girl? Tsukishima-senpai? Well, it’s fine because it’s light anyway.
“Yes, that’s right. I’m in my second year, so normally I could serve for another term but… I’m sure there are many candidates for the next term and that I will lose.” She smiled wryly.
“Tanaka-senpai, you’re in your second year?”
“Yes. I’m actually in the same class as Mizusaki-kun. To tell you the truth, I find him hard to deal with.”
Oh-ho~ It makes sense. Mizusaki-senpai has a strong and forceful personality while Tanaka-senpai was diligent. The two of them don’t seem compatible. Also, Tanaka-senpai held the air of a calm and quiet person, so I don’t think Mizusaki-senpai will be interested in her.
“Tsukishima-senpai wants me to stay in the student council so that the work will be taken over smoothly but……” Tanaka-senpai frowned.
I’m sure she’s reluctant to stay behind if the new student council involves Mizusaki-senpai who she didn’t like and his fan club members who will insult her while she worked. I couldn’t blame her at all.
“But it’s not 100% sure that Mizusaki-senpai will be elected though, right?”
“Eh?” Tanaka-senpai looked surprised.
“Tanaka-senpai, why don’t you run for student president with Tsukishima-senpai’s recommendation as your promotion line? I think if Mizusaki-senpai doesn’t get elected as president, he won’t join the student council.”
Adding on to this, if Mizusaki-senpai wasn’t around, his fan club members will also, assuming they got elected, withdraw too. Their motives were dishonest after all.
Even though I’m the one saying all this, I think I’m guessing right. Mizusaki-senpai is a womanizer and loves being a show-off. The reason why he would run for president is because Mizusaki-senpai thinks him being at the top of the school will be beautiful.
“Won’t I lose for sure if I did that? I don’t think I can win against Mizusaki-kun,” Tanaka-senpai said, reluctant.
“There are students who are worried if Mizusaki-senpai will run the student council properly. It’s people like them who will vote for Tanaka-senpai since you have previous results and experience. I noticed this after reading the clauses of the election administration but when there are multiple candidates for presidency and the votes for the top two are very close, the one who loses will become the vice president. If Mizusaki-senpai becomes vice president in a scenario like this, don’t you think he’ll withdraw?”
Incidentally, in a situation like that, the candidate for vice president will then become a candidate for the accounting position. For that sake, the ballots for the accounting position includes the names of those running for vice president in advance.
If that candidate for vice president is elected for vice president, then their votes in accounting will be nullified. Voting a second time for the accounting position with the previous vice president candidates after a close-tie president battle takes too much time, so the system is constructed this way.
When more than three candidates for student president have more or less the same amount of votes, the 1st place student will become president and the remainder will lose the election.
“Umm… Are you not interested in Mizusaki-kun?” Tanaka-senpai asked something unexpected.
“What do you mean by interested?”
“Ah, I’m sorry. I asked something rude. I’m the same as you after all. I should already know that not all girls are interested in him and understand that, yet…”
“I don’t know Mizusaki-senpai enough to be interested in him…” All I knew about Mizusaki-senpai was that he was a womanizer, his tastes for girls leaned in one angle only, and he was interested in Maria-jou’s tough attitude. Other than that……
I recalled him during the folk dance, which made me smile.
“I think the way he works hard to keep looking cool at all times is his strong point and the good side of him.”
He tries to show-off all the time, but he actually has excellent grades as well. I’m sure he was smart to begin with. But I think he thought having bad marks was not cool at all, so he does best in the shadows when no one is looking.
If he turns that same energy to become a diligent student president, then I wouldn’t mind if Mizusaki-senpai becomes our new president.
It’s only been a short time I’ve worked as a class representative, but I have come to see things in a different light. A student in a position above everyone else, no matter what their motive is, should properly think of the other students and their school lives as they carry out their duties.
I won’t have a single problem with the fanclub girls if they properly did their role as student council members. Unfortunately, they had an image of slacking, so I didn’t like the idea of them winning the election.
“………Mizusaki-kun, works hard?” Tanaka-senpai repeated my words like she was surprised. I wonder how she sees him as she was in the same class as him. I wonder if, in her eyes, he looked like a man who doesn’t even need to put effort to be smart, was good-looking, could do anything with one try, popular with girls, and a jerk.
“I don’t know everything about Mizusaki-senpai,” I said once more. Tanaka-senpai blinked her eyes. “Don’t you think that’s why it’s important to not swallow all the rumours going around about someone?”
That was our conversation as we walked to the student council room, which was located on the third floor of the west building. When we reached the west building, we spotted a group of girls blocking the way. ……I felt deja-vu.
Don’t tell me it’s Mizusaki-senpai’s fanclub again. The thought made me grimaced — but when I saw the beautiful girl near the group, I was surprised. It was Maria-jou. It seems she was interested in what’s happening in the middle of the group. She was standing on her tiptoes, trying to peek in. It was kind of cute.
“What’s wrong?” I called out to her from behind.
She jumped, flustered, and turned around. “W-W-Wh-What, oh, it’s you Niimi-san. You scared me……” Maria-jou pressed her hands against her heart, gasping for her breath. Just how surprised were you?
“What are you looking at?” I asked again.
Isn’t this group related to Mizusaki-senpai? I tried peeking in from the side. However, against my predictions, the person in the middle of the group was a pretty boy who fitted the word ‘cute’ perfectly. The girls surrounding him had a different atmosphere than Mizusaki-senpai’s fangirls. They didn’t have flashy make-up on — they were a group of kind looking big sisters.
“Huh? That boy……” I let out.
“You know him?”
I couldn’t say, ‘Isn’t he that boy who played the violin at the church?’ to Maria-jou, so I panicked. After all, there’s no way I could confess I secretly observed the two when they first met back on the first day of school.
“He’s an unbelievably cute pretty boy.” For the time being, I gave an extremely safe answer.
“Oh my, that boy… He’s Tsukishima-senpai’s little brother.” It was Tanaka-senpai who solved the question in my mind.
“Do you know him?” Maria-jou asked Tanaka-senpai politely.
“He’s very cute, so the girl seniors would often surround him like that.”
Sounds about right. The scene right in front of our eyes was basically that.
“Yuuki-kuuun~ Can I pet your head~?”
“U-Umm… p-please stop…!”
“Ahaha~ So cute~ I wanna rub against him moreee~” One of the big sisters clung on to the pretty boy and rubbed her hand again and again on his head. The pretty boy’s hair became a mess. He looked like he was about to cry and was at the mercy of her hands.
“Ah~ I’m jealous~ Me too! Let me rub him too!”
“Kyaaa! His skin is so soft!”
“Ufufufu. He’s cute when he’s scared of us too~ I want a little brother like him too~”
He had one big sister petting his head and one big sister kissing his cheek. There was also one big sister pressing his face against her chest. It was basically an array of sexual harassment.
“W-What is this……”
“He’s being completely played with……”
Maybe Tanaka-senpai was used to seeing this, so she didn’t look all that surprised. As for Maria-jou, her eyes were wide open as her body shook.
“His name is Tsukishima Yuuki-kun, a first year. I guess he’s in a different class than you two. Once in a while he’ll come over to the west building and end up like that…… But he never visited the student council room.” Tanaka-senpai shook her head like she was astonished. She took one step forward and called out to the crowd. “You girls! What do you think you’re doing? You’re being a bother in the middle of the hallway, you know!?”
“Geh? It’s Tanaka-san!”
“Don’t ‘geh’ me. Don’t bully your kouhai like this. …Tsukishima-kun, do you have business here in the west building?”
“Ah, no……” The pretty boy answered back.
“My, my, come on, Tanaka-chan~ We got a little bit too excited, so don’t get mad at Yuuki-kun. Come on, Yuuki-kun, let’s go~ We’ll help you study~!”
“That’s right, that’s right~ Let’s get going~!”
“Tanaka-chan, we’re sorry~ We’ll apologize so forgive us!”
“You girls……. Well, as long as you’re not noisy in the hallway, it doesn’t bother me. Make sure you aren’t too loud,” Tanaka-senpai told the group of girls.
“Yes, ma’am~ We will take care~!”
The group of girls beamed as they cackled. Just like that, the big sister group took the pretty boy away.
Me and Maria-jou could only gape.
But it’s weird. Wasn’t the pretty boy more cold back when he was at the church? I didn’t think he would be a frail boy who would get teased like that.
While I was tilting my head in question, Maria-jou looked down as she mumbled something under her breath.
“…….—then next is……”
“Did you say something?”
“Eh? ……No, I didn’t say anything. More importantly, I had something to do in the staff room, so I need to go.”
“Ah, is that so?”
“Yeah. So, Niimi-san, see you later!” Maria-jou went off running again.
“Hey, wait! Don’t run in the hallways!”
Whenever I see her, she’s always running. Naturally, Tanaka-senpai tried to discipline her, but I don’t think she was listening at all.
Still, I finally learned the pretty boy’s name. Tsukishima Yuuki, a first year.
I thought something was weird. Moon, fire, water, wood, gold, earth, and sun. There should be seven capture targets, yet the numbers no longer matched after Designer-kun’s appearance. And now I discovered there were two Tsukishima.
I wonder what this means. I need to check with Kazu-nii later.
[Target, heading from west to center building. She has business in the staff room.]
I sent off the message to Kazu-nii before holding the equipment back into my arms again.
Turning my eyes back to Tanaka-senpai, I opened my mouth. “Thank you for waiting. Let’s continue on to the student council room.”
I said with an innocent look on my face.
□ ■ □
Kazu-nii, the advisor for the student council, was another one of the people who were racking their brains regarding the next student council members.
If Mizusaki-senpai runs for president, then surely Kaneshiro-senpai will run for vice president or something, we believed. If both of them were elected into the student council, the fanclub members will follow after as extras. However, will they properly work? It’ll be troubling if the student council room becomes a harem room.
“I think you understand this too, Shiori, but the student council and class representatives are surprisingly busy with lots of tasks on their hands. It’s a boring role. While you will be in a higher position than the other students, it’s not going to work out unless you do your duties properly.”
“And you forced me into that kind of role, huh, Kazu-nii? And you nominated me personally too.”
“Err, back then I was…”
“You were about to say student number and almost nominated Maria-jou without thinking, so you tried to avoid that, didn’t you? I know why you did it. It doesn’t mean I’ve forgiven you for it yet though.”
“……How about kashiwa mochi from Spring Breeze Pavilion?”
“Kashiwa mochi is best when you eat it around Boy’s Day1, so I don’t want it anymore. It’s already too late. I’m different from Kazu-nii who’s head is in pudding all year round. Anyways, are all the current members of the student council being replaced this year?”
“It’s a possibility for as long as we run on a candidate and voting system. On a normal year, about half the members will stay the same. Or rather, they receive recommendations from their student president and then join the election. It’s basically a vote of confidence afterwards…… I wonder how it’ll be this time around.”
“Will the fanclub members receive enough support that they will be elected? It’s really obvious they have impure motives,” I asked.
“Even then, it’s also true they aren’t considerate enough to hand over the right to work with both Mizusaki and Kaneshiro in the same room all day long to another person. Humans vote for people they know. If those girls extensively appeal themselves and get their name known to a degree, then it’s not impossible they will be elected.”
“There’s teachers’ recommendation, aren’t there? Can you recommend Tanaka-senpai?”
“Whether or not she’ll announce candidacy in the end will depend on her will. It’s not like recommendations from the teachers will tip the scales in favor either,” Kazu-nii replied.
I crossed my arms, worried. It’ll be nice if Mizusaki-senpai and the girls took their duties as the student council more seriously. There will be times when I have to speak with the student council because of my role as a vice class representative. As such, I wanted diligent people on board.
“How about you, Shiori? Why don’t you run as a candidate?”
“Sounds like a pain. No way. I don’t even want to continue with my role as a class rep either.”
“……Well, most people think the same as you do. In that sense, people who want to stand out like Mizusaki are valuable. There’s also me here who doesn’t want to make Mizusaki lose his ambitions.”
It seems Kazu-nii’s heart was in a complicated place.
There are people who want to stand out and people who don’t. One of them is not better than the other; merely these two types of humans existed.
“I guess things that will happen are going to happen.”
“Yeah, that’s basically it.”
It looks like it’s useless discussing this matter any further. Kazu-nii and I both came to this conclusion and changed the subject.
“You said his name was Tsukishima?” Kazu-nii asked.
“That’s right,” I replied. “The pretty boy she met at the church on the first day was Tsukishima-senpai’s little brother.”
“Which means there are two Tsukishima, huh.”
“Yeah. And since he’s a first year, he should be in one of your math classes. Why didn’t you realize?”
“I already assumed the Monday capture target was the student president, Tsukishima, so I didn’t even think about it.”
“I see… And what does this mean in the end? There are only seven capture targets, right?”
“That’s right,” Kazu-nii confirmed. “That’s why… the actual capture target would be one of the two. But there’s a possibility the other Tsukishima is a key in progressing in their scenario.”
“What do you mean by key?”
“For example, the two brothers don’t get along and the heroine will help them make up. Something like that, basically. From what I heard, it sounds like the younger Tsukishima may have a two-sided personality where he acts meek in front of his seniors. It’s only in front of the heroine that he’ll show his true colors… or so I’m guessing.”
“Tsukishima-senpai is tackling his last major task too. And with the reappearance of the pretty boy, I’m guessing the Tsukishima scenario is going to progress for a while?”
“Sounds about right. Aikawa doesn’t look like she has the time to bother me either. I feel relieved.”
“I wonder about that? Kazu-nii, you’re the student council’s advisor, so you’d interact with Tsukishima-senpai often, won’t you? If Maria-jou triggers the Tsukishima brothers’ events then Kazu-nii will get mixed up in them. Plus, did you forget how you made the supplementary lesson happen? Don’t tell me you forgot?”
Kazu-nii went silent.
“By the way, what’s the next Hibiya event like?” I asked him. “Can you avoid it?”
“……I think it’s… probably alright.”
“Where is it?”
“In the student council room……”
I grimaced. “Just the two of you?”
“Well yeah…… A teacher can’t create a weird atmosphere with their student with other people around.”
“I hope you remember what events you have at least inside the school.”
“Wait, wait, wait, this is where you should be praying I’ll avoid all my events!”
Jeez. I can’t help but think Kazu-nii is weak-willed.
“And what are the Tsukishima events like?” I questioned.
“I don’t know them. My little sister didn’t capture them yet. Shiori, you said you saw the younger brother play the violin right? Maybe the church is also a key.”
Kazu-nii started to write down Maria-jou’s acquaintances in a notebook.
Tsukshima Keiichiro: Student president — 3rd Year (Class E)
Tsukishima Yuuki: Violinist, Keiichiro’s little brother — 1st Year (Class D)
Kamura Ryo: Transfer student, designer — 1st Year (Class B)
Mizusaki Homare: Son of a wealthy corporation — 2nd Year (Class A)
Katsuragi Kyouya: Son of a dojo owner —1st Year (Class C)
Kaneshiro Atsushi: Homare’s best friend — 2nd Year (Class A)
Tsuchiya Yousuke: Maria-jou’s childhood friend — 1st Year (Class B)
Hibiya Kazuto: Math teacher — Homeroom Teacher
Matsuri Kyouko: Adviser (informant)? — 1st Year (Class B)
“I guess this makes all the capture targets. We don’t know which Tsukishima it is though……”
“Hey, if Maria-jou falls in love with one of them, will she end up focused on their story?”
“That’s what’s supposed to happen when you end up on one of the capture targets’ routes,” Kazu-nii said, nodded his head. “I have to avoid my next event somehow and have the others do their best…..”
He’s asking for something quite difficult. After all, the only guys on the list who will approach a girl on their own are probably Mizusaki-senpai and Designer-kun? They have many acquaintances too, and I feel like they will approach girls other than Maria-jou too. But there’s no meaning then. We need them to approach Maria-jou only and in a special way compared to any other girls.
“Is there anything we can do?” I asked Kazu-nii.
“Like what?” He questioned.
“Basically, we need one of the guys on this list to interact with Maria-jou, right? If we can get Maria-jou meeting with only one of the guys, we should be able to avoid events.”
“……Is that even possible?” Kazu-nii was skeptical.
“Kazu-nii, you’ve never read shoujo manga, have you?”
“No, I guess I haven’t, but what are you trying to say?”
“In shoujo manga, the heroine will have a best friend. And this best friend will try to cheer on the heroine’s love by pestering the hero or get in the way of the hero’s rival, so he doesn’t get close to the heroine.”
“…….And do you have a specific plan?”
“I’ll get Iinchou and Yumi-chan to cooperate with me,” I told him. “When Maria-jou gets close to guys other than the ‘hero’, we’ll nonchalantly direct her away. Like if we see her heading to the west building, we can tell her a teacher is calling for her in the center building. Something like this.”
“There’s a limit if it’s just me getting in the way. Iinchou and Yumi-chan are tight-lipped. In fact, Iinchou seems to know a lot of things, so I get the feeling he’s a good fit.”
“But what are you going to tell them to help you out? If you say this world’s an otome game, they’ll think you’re insane,” Kazu-nii pointed out.
“What the heck are you saying? All you have to do is simply say: ‘So-and-so-kun seems to like Maria-jou. Let’s help him out.’ High school students are cruel and also brimming with curiosity. Kazu-nii, you’ve forgotten your teenager heart already. Every high schooler knows just how scary rumors can be. Every single one of them.”
“……But what about So-and-so-kun’s feelings?”
“That’s not a line you can say, Kazu-nii. You’re the one trying to get Maria-jou to hook up with someone else. But don’t worry, there’s already someone suitable to be So-and-so-kun already.”
“You mean, Tsuchiya.”
“Yeah,” I nodded. “……To be honest, Mizusaki-senpai and Kaneshiro-senpai aren’t realistic. Katsuragi-kun doesn’t seem aware of things like romance at all, so I’ll feel bad for him. I don’t really know Designer-kun, but if it’s Tsuchiya-shounen, Maria-jou’s childhood friend, then there’s no doubt. You can tell how he feels just by looking at him. He’s conscious of Maria-jou. He was really obvious on Designer-kun’s first day.”
“I see now.”
“The problem is, in Tsuchiya-shounen’s case, he requires a rival to proceed in his scenario……. But, from the looks of it, the Tsukishima events are progressing forward, so let’s put our hopes on the Tsukishima brothers.”
I cast my eyes down on the names written on the notebook, reading them all once more. I opened my mouth and muttered, “……The church, huh. Come to think of it, Tsukishima-bishounen said she could go there and listen again if she wanted. I wonder if there’s an event where Maria-jou visits again?”
“There probably is.”
I still haven’t explored the church yet. From what I hear, we were no longer forbidden from entering the church because the workers were done. Maybe I’ll go take a peek some day. I’ll try on a holiday where no one would be around.
“It looks like June is going to be busy too. There’s also the student council elections…” I muttered.
“June, huh. ……Come to think of it.”
“What’s wrong?” I asked Kazu-nii.
“No, it’s just when you think of June, you think of the rainy season, right? Shiori, didn’t you mention your umbrella was broken?”
“Oh, right. It got overturned during a storm and the ribs broke. I already threw it out. What about it?”
“There’s going to be a lot of rain. It’ll be best if you buy a new one,” he advised me.
“You need to be on guard with rainy days. There’ll be lots of events.”
□ ■ □
The female student spread her old notebook with irritation.
The page with May written on it barely had checkmarks. There were a mountain of items left unfinished.
“Barely any subevents happened…….. That’s strange. I filled all the requirements too…”
If she thought about it, GW was strange too. She triggered the flags she needed and entered the CD shop. Yet, no event happened. She thought maybe it’ll happen randomly due to timing, so she reentered again and again, yet nothing happened.
“Kyouya-kun and Mizusaki-senpai’s Sports Festival events slipped by cause I prioritized Tsukkun’s borrowing race event, so that can’t be helped. I used the folk dance to gain friendship points with the other targets, so, well, I covered what I needed, I guess.”
She muttered under her breath word after word.
“Kamura-kun appeared properly. The main story hasn’t deviated. In the next month’s election, Mizusaki-senpai should become the next student president…… If I have enough friendship rate with him, I would get invited to join the student council too. But in the end, the GW trip with him ended with the version where I don’t have enough friendship. I wonder what’ll happen? Well, even if I don’t have enough friend points, there’s still lots of exciting events outside the student council room. Being part of the student council in real life is a pain too.”
She flipped through the pages of her notebook. Soon, she was back in a good mood with a smile on her lips.
“Yuuki-kun finally reappeared, so next are the church and brotherly fight events. Fufufu~ Yuuki-kun is so cute when he warms up, so I’m looking forward to it. He’ll make me wanna kiss him but I have to hold back. It’s a real shame~ …….Kyaaa~!”
Her cheeks flushed red as she slapped her hand against her notebook.
“Hibiya-sensei’s evening lesson was wonderful too…… I wonder how an adult man like him can be that beautiful. Once I progress through his events, I want him to look at me with those eyes, whisper ‘Maria’, and hold me tight……!”
The lone female student was intoxicated. Eventually, she came back to her senses and glanced around her. Once she confirmed no one was nearby, she cast her eyes down on her notebook again.
When she flipped the May page, she came to the next page that said ‘June’. The word, ‘rain’, was circled twice on the sheet.
“It feels like the timing will be difficult when it’s reality…… It’s not like it’ll rain everyday. I have to use the rainy days well and trigger events. It’ll be nice if random events occur properly……” She sighed, conflicted with worries. In the end, she closed the notebook.
“I guess I’ll try putting my informant to use more. It’s supposed to increase the chance of random events happening.”
“…Alright,” the girl nodded to herself.
She smiled with excitement.
TL: With this May comes to an end! But Shiori’s duties as a
corporate slave class representative will not end.