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Toi knew that his audience was more important than anything else in his life could be. He strove to be the best of the best, a champion among plebeians, a god among men. As such, he knew that he had a duty to drop everything for his 20 followers, which was really a lot when you thought about it. After all, he only had two friends, so that was a lot of people he didn’t know. And so, despite it being a Wednesday night at 10:30 pm, and despite the fact that he hadn’t done any of his homework, despite his brother’s instance that he at least do his math, he knew it was time to do another Minecraft twitch stream.

This was serious business.

Toi logged on, and started up a game. He wasn’t a coward, so he knew that it was time to play one of the big pvp servers.

“What’s up gamers it’s time to wreck some n00bs,” he said. “Today I’m going to be playing Minecraft.”  His mic was of a crappy quality, incapable both of clearly picking up his own voice and not catching background noise, so his solution was to shout everything he said. As a result, seconds after this he could hear footsteps and loud knocking on his door.

 “TOI YOU HAVE SCHOOL TOMORROW GO TO BED,” his brother shouted from the other side of the door.

“I make my own rules!” Toi shouted back.

“You legitimately do not. As your guardian I am telling you that if you aren’t going to do your homework than you need to go to bed.”

“Alright, fine.” He heard his brother walk away from the door, then proceeded to whisper into the microphone.

“Ok so this stream is going to have to be silent until my loser brother goes to sleep which should be in an hour, so I’m just not going to talk for an hour,” he told his one viewer. So he began to play. He was fairly confident he was the best player on the server. Confident in the way every 13 year old is confident; falsely. Within minutes, he was killed by a player named Keeponly1luv.

“fRICK,” he yelled into the microphone, voice cracking, and then realized his mistake. Premiere Gynmopedie played in his head as he heard the sound of his brother racing downstairs. This was truly a tragic day, he thought, as he heard his brother unplug the wifi router.

“BED. NOW.” his brother shouted through the door.

Toi sighed. What an overreaction, he only streamed past midnight three times a week. It’s not like it was a regular distraction from his studies or anything. As he went to sleep, he thought to himself that he would just stream again tomorrow, this time with his only two friends, and that all would go well on Minecraft, not knowing yet that the destruction that had occurred had only yet began.


And in an apartment above a police koban, far on the other side of Asakusa, a man left a Minecraft server, laughing to himself.

“Reo,” his husband called from the kitchen. “Please tell me you weren’t killing thirteen year-olds on Minecraft again.”

“Yeah Papa Reo, it’s kinda weird dish~” his teenage daughter called from the apartment’s main room.

“No Mabu, no Sara, I definitely wasn’t doing that. I don’t even know what a Minecraft is,” he said, logging out of his Minecraft account. Day one of his mission had been completed, but there was still so much left to go.

Chapter Text

Toi had two friends. While two friends might seem a small number, when you take into consideration that middle schoolers are complete snakes, Toi managed to find two actually decent friends was a fairly impressive accomplishment. He had only known them since middle school, but he had had zero friends before that, so they were his oldest friends.

First there was Kazuki, a boy who reminded Toi of concentrated orange juice, only instead of orange pulp concentrate, just stupid. In other words, Kazuki was just stupid in a can. He radiated dumb, which Toi was sure was going to lead to some serious emotional issues down the line for Kazuki, but Toi figured Kazuki would eventually figure it out.

Then there was Enta, or, as Toi liked to call him, the Nerd™. Enta was an anomaly among humans; if you took a glance at his round glasses, awkwardly parted bangs, and his short stature, you would become instantly amazed at how such a perfect example of a nerd could exist in the world. His face was akin to the mathematical formula of the perfect ratio, but as the quintessential representation of a dweeb. However, the second you got him to open his mouth, more information on soccer would fall out than previously known to man. Simply put, he seemed to be a jock in a nerd’s body. Although, if his tales of his soccer days with Kazuki were to be believed, he was physically a jock too, some sort of nerd/jock hybrid. This concept hurt Toi’s brain, as he still had a High School Musical level of socially classifying people, so he tried to avoid thinking about it at all costs.

Together, they made the Golden Trio, or as Enta liked to call them, the “Golden duo and also Toi I guess”. As a group, they tended to function, although Toi sometimes felt the most observational out of the three of them, as he was 65% sure that Enta had a massive crush on Kazuki, and 100% sure that if that were the case, Kazuki was completely unaware.

But despite the frustration of being the smartest in the room at all times, Toi enjoyed spending time with his friends. They always had each other’s backs, and also they liked Minecraft.

And so Toi decided that after school, in order to make up for the Twitch stream that had gotten cut off before it could get interesting, he would make what could possibly be the best video of his twitch career. A video so original, all of the losers in the world wouldn’t be able to hold back from following his account.

Making his friends guest star in a video.  

It was pure genius.


If there was one thing Kazuki had learned in his long, tumultuous 13 years, it was that an off brand Sara cosplay bought secondhand off of amazon was much cheaper than the cost of family therapy. He had done extensive google researching on the cost of both, and he had come away with the slight sense that perhaps there was something wrong with the way capitalism functions that would perhaps later influence his thinking, but only served to continue feeding his inner preteen angst. He had also come away with poorly made, but inexpensive Sara cosplay though, so he figured that the system of capitalism probably had some pros as well as cons.

It wasn’t so much that he liked Sara; in terms of beauty youtubers, she was extremely popular, but he just didn’t care much about her content.

His brother on the other hand adored Sara. Their shared bedroom was overflowing with Sara merch to the point that Kazuki couldn’t help but wonder if his brother was working some secret, undercover yakuza job to cover all the costs of exclusive merchandising. His brother was also eight years old, but Kazuki figured that anything was possible.

He couldn’t ask his brother about this, though. It wasn’t that they were fighting, but Kazuki still was dealing with guilt over his brother’s accident. And so he dealt with it in the only was he knew how; emotional repression, distancing himself from the cause of his guilt, and becoming a TikTok cosplayer in order to simultaneously continue interacting with his brother, even if under the false guise of being Azuma Sara.

Somehow, most people, his brother included, actually seemed convinced he was the real thing.

To keep it going, all he needed to do was memorize Azuma Sara’s video upload and livestream schedule in order to ensure he was posting tiktoks at times when the real Sara could, keep a consistent upload schedule, and pray that she never discovered his channel and called him out for it.

So, it was simple enough.

He had already built a fanbase that was at about three thousand subscribers, so it was fairly substantial, but nowhere near the size of a popular tiktok account. The only issue was, if the real Sara had a tiktok, it would be immensely popular, so he needed to gain more followers if he wanted it to seem legit. He had tried making a graph to find the best follower count to seem legit while not enough for Sara to come after him. He had then remembered that he had barely passed math the last couple of years, and thrown the graph away.


That day, he had just been thinking that he needed to pull a stunt. His follower count had been leveling off in the last couple of months, so he needed to do something big in order to stay in the safe-pretending-to-be-Sara-zone.

And as luck would have it, directly after school, Toi pulled him and Enta aside with a proposition.


“Make a Minecraft video with me.”

Enta was confused. As far as he was concerned, there were two things central to his personality. One: soccer was his life. Two: he was in love with Kazuki. He only vocally expressed the first one, but the second one was just as much central to who he was as the first.  Minecraft was neither of these two things. He would never admit this to his two friends, but he actually preferred Fortnite.

He was about to make up an excuse when Kazuki cut in.

“Sure! Yup!”

How unfortunate his life was, the extent he had to go in order to hang out with Kazuki.

“Yeah,” he said. “Sure, I’ll participate in your Minecraft video." He would have preferred not being in late night twitch stream of Minecraft, but c’est la vie he figured.

Kazuki’s expression changed suddenly.

“Actually,” he said. “Uh, I’m not going to be able to come later today, so could someone else come in my place?”

Which meant Enta had just joined a Minecraft livestream to hang out with Kazuki, only for Kazuki to immediately ditch. Fantastic.

Toi scratched his head. “I mean, I guess if you can’t be there… whatever I guess.” Kazuki shot him a thumbs up, then ran off to wherever he had to be, leaving Toi and Enta awkwardly standing outside of the school.

“He didn’t even ask what time Minecraft was gonna be,” Enta said.

“No, he did not,” Toi said.

“Or where we were gonna play,” Enta said.

“Nope,” Toi said.

After all, with Kazuki, it really did be like that.


“They’re going to be playing Minecraft tonight,” the voice on the other end of the telephone said. “Keep up the good work and I’ll get you what you need.”

“Will do.” Reo hung up the phone.

“Papa Reo, are you making shady business deals over the telephone again dish~?” Sara called from the other room.

“No, that’s definitely not what I’m doing!” He yelled back. Then he paused for a second in thought.

“But don’t mention it to Papa Mabu.”