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Quest to find a hopeless reserve course

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Questions were a common thing. Everyone had a few, most had a lot. In the current situation if Seiko got a yen for every question just asked she would be equal in wealth to the Togami Conglomerate. The first though less pressing of which being how did Komaeda’s plan work?

Hiding in the closet and hoping they wouldn’t explore the room was incredibly risky. While she understands he has his luck to back up such a risk, Seiko had been under the assumption that he had little control of his talent. How did he know this would work out?

Seiko waited in the closet for some time. Just to ensure they were gone and also to go over what she had heard. Condition not allowing him to get surgery. This is normally only a problem if someone was sick before surgery but the mention of a long recovery suggests deficiencies in healing. If it’s his vocal cords specifically he could have a damaged throat. Alternatively there was the more simple solution: he could be sick. Komaeda Nagito was a scrawny guy who doesn't eat much and Seiko is pretty sure white hair isn't natural.

Seeing that the room was still empty and deciding it was safe Seko left the closet. Now that Komaeda managed to cause a distraction, Seiko could get rid of the incriminating evidence. As long as she pulls that off they won’t be able to connect Komaeda directly to the crime. True he was still in hot water but this solution gives Komaeda the best out he’s gonna get.

Deciding to ponder on her friend's condition later Seiko’s brain instead wondered about his comments regarding the head of security and his teachers' connection to this Munakata? and the international branch. It sounded crazy to her like the conspiracy nuts who occasionally harassed her about her connections to ‘Big Pharma’. As if Seiko would have answers, she refuses corporate funding, She’s not having another Polio vaccine incident.

Despite how crazy Komaeda sounded, their reactions were genuine. While Seiko was in a closet thus seeing nothing she heard the bang and his teacher said it could have given Komaeda a concussion. So whatever he was picking up on was serious and hearing it probably puts her in a pretty dangerous position.

Exiting the room she began to sneak around the halls of the reserve course. While it can get pretty crowded during the day it was around eleven PM so most students were either sleeping or studying. This made sneaking around pretty easy for Seiko as she could get out of the building and make it to the gates of the reserve course. Passing the gates Seiko had made it. At least she thought she had.

“Hey, you!” A higher-pitched voice called out almost like that of a child. Turning in the direction she saw a large man with unkempt light hazel hair and cold green eyes. Seiko was able to recognize him as one of Komaeda’s classmates. The Ultimate Animator Mitarai Ryota. But something didn’t add up. The classmate Komaeda described was shy and quiet. This student was silent in his approach but came off more cold and terrifying than shy.

Seiko was not great under pressure in fact she might be the worst Ultimate under pressure of the currently attending. While a few who did not know better would try and say that the Ultimate nurse Tsumiki was a contender for such a position. That was simply not true despite how she seems in normal conversation Seiko has noticed that the moment you enter her comfort zone and as long as you keep it there she is unbreakable. Or at least Komaeda choking on a bottle didn’t beat her. Seiko even while practicing her talent sometimes can’t help but shake.

As it stood, being questioned was not good for the ultimate pharmacist. As he approached Seiko quickly began to construct a lie. Nothing much, she just needs a reason to be here, at the reserve course. carrying a trash bag. Too bad that simple lie seemed to be beyond her as she could not think up a solution.

In hindsight, Seiko should have broken into a sprint and chugged her steroid. In reality, she did none of that and kinda just stood there awkwardly half mumbling potential lies to herself and finding that none of them worked. What reason would she have for being in the reserve course building anyway?

Once he got in front of her he spoke again. “Um, what are you doing here?”

This time his voice was more soft-spoken and of a lower pitch. Paying attention to his body language it seemed that her observation of her friend's description being unclear was an error on her part. This student was definitely shy and quiet like Komaeda said though she’s not sure how he changed his voice.

For a second she stood there awkward then it flashed a working lie. “I was visiting a friend in the reserve course.”

‘The best lie flirts with the truth.’ Seiko heard that somewhere once and in this case it wasn’t even a lie, really just a half-truth. So basically unbeatable you can disprove a lie but there is no way to disprove the truth.

“Really what’s this friend's name?” The high-pitched voice rang out again but this time not from the lips of the quiet Mitarai before her. Looking around she saw nothing. The voice had no source; it was as if it came from nowhere.

“Okay, no need to play this out, look down here.” Looking down next to the underclassman was a small child wearing a main course uniform but she didn’t recognize him in fact it was hard to make him out. It was similar to when someone walks in your peripheral vision and they're kinda blurry but he’s right in front of her. The pharmacist found herself squinting just to make him out.

“Yeah I kinda just fade in and out but that's not important at the moment. I need to know who the reserve course student is?” His voice had the innocence you see from child voice actors in anime. She half expected him to go into a rant on how he’s gonna be the greatest whatever.

Seiko thought fast. Komaeda never told her his fake name she doesn't think and even if he did these guys might be on to them. In fact, there's a chance Komaeda’s teacher didn’t find the cameras they did. With that in mind, she came up with the blandest boring name she could think of. Something so basic it sounded more like a blank slate protagonist than a person. “Rangi Makoto.” She said, trying to keep her voice straight.

“Why do you want to know? Actually, I know who he is but who are you?” Seiko asked the second question, having just popped into her head.

“Kamishiro, Yuto Kamishiro. As for this information I need it for a study the school has requested regarding relations between main and reserve courses for the sake of discovering whether they have a direct effect on the social capabilities of the main course. With that in mind, would you mind giving us the room number of your friend?”

Seiko didn’t buy that not that it mattered because truth or a lie her answer would be the same. “He’s not in his room, he's studying in one of the study rooms.” She said trying to keep her voice steady but definitely failing and coming off as more of a sad puppy than actual confidence.

With that she began to walk away quickly, excusing herself from the conversation. As Seiko left they said nothing but she could feel their eyes boring into her which just made this worse. Once out of sight the pharmacist let out a large sigh. She could feel herself shaking being that close to failing was terrifying.

The two of them were definitely on to them. The idea of the school wanting interaction between the two courses was laughable to her at this point. To her, it’s clear the reserve course is nothing but a paying labor force in exchange for the benefit of being a hope's peak graduate. They pay the school and do its labor for them. Even after Komaeda blew up the gym despite being dangerous to clean with all the shrapnel around they still did it.

This also means the reserve course views the main course with disdain. Even though they want to achieve main course status they still resent the main course for causing a majority of the damage they have to clean. Put simply, friendships between the reserve and main courses are never meant to go well and usually do end tragically at least the three she knows of have. Sadly it also was most likely the fate of the friendship Komaeda wants to mend in some way the artificial division between main and reserve courses separated them.

Despite this Komaeda still wants to make a hole in this line to try and break the indefinite rule the school had set in place without saying it just to make a friend happy. Despite the impossibility of this goal here, Seiko herself was beside him trying to help him achieve this act of defiance. Despite the impossibility of it all, a part of her felt like it could be done. Seeing what Komaeda had done so far, perhaps together they could pull it off. The idea had a warmness to it if they could pull this off they could do anything maybe making friends wouldn’t be too hard. This nice warmness she somewhat recognized. It was the same way when people complimented her medicine or even when Seiko was proud to have finished one she wanted in particular but stronger. Was this the Hope Komaeda coveted so much? If so she might be able to understand him a bit more… It's nice.

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“That confirms my suspicion,” Kamishiro said with final confidence as if it had all come together.

Ryota turned towards him at this point he found there was very little point in going hard as Ryota so he decided to do soft Ryota letting a bit more of himself show. “What did you get from that?” He was not comfortable with the implication.

“Elementary my dear Imposter… wait, wrong Englishmen. Doesn't matter if Kimura is here, it is definitive proof that Komaeda is here.” He said with a childlike wonder Ryota was curious if he manufactured it.

“But isn’t my testimony enough and how does Kimura prove anything?” Ryota was the Ultimate Imposter; his word was the law on such matters; the school would believe him if he were to give Komeda away. Which would almost definitely lead to Komaeda being expelled, however, he would rather him stay close and within stopping distance as Kuzuryu said. Now just so happened to be a time to stop him.

“For the school, yes but that might require you out yourself and if I'm correct in my theory, the real Ryota wouldn't like that? As for Kimura, I happen to know that she and the lucky student have gotten pretty close. He visited her every day soon after the incident last semester” Kamishiro spoke with a suave confidence that came off as rehearsed like he was impostering.

Of course he liked the idea, taking himself off the evidence list would give him the ability to continue hiding. Even though he liked his class and considered many of them friends he wasn’t ready to out himself, especially to the more intelligent ones who could deduce Ryotas true existence. Also it would be harder to bust Komaeda to the school which would help maintain his life line.

As for this friendship, it would be a lie to say he was not suspicious of it Komaeda basically refused all gestures of friendship. Some of his class silently see him as a friend they really have no substance. The only one who hasn’t given up on a close friendship with the Lucky student was Nanami and he was pretty sure she just couldn't read the social cues that the endeavor was pointless. Alternatively her commitment to gaming could have her treating Komaeda like a challenge in a videogame while she is honest about her inability to play dating sims perhaps she views Komaeda as a similar challenge. It really could be either or both.

“What do you suggest?” He asked the spy wondering if he had a plan to answer this conundrum. The Spy beamed at his question, seemingly wanting him to ask that.

“The answer is simple: you go into the reserve course and find the target. He’s much more likely to listen to you. Use animation attention to detail and face structures as an excuse to ensure you find him. While you do that I'm going to trail the pharmacist. There's a chance Komaeda has already fled and was using her to destroy evidence. I am going to try and gather this evidence and at best if Komaeda has fled, try and use her to track him down.”

Ryota just shrugged and started towards the building. There was nothing to say really. This strategy is the best that they can do or at least it’s something he can work with. The excuse for how he was able to see past it was well thought out even. If everything works out then he can get there first and try to talk him out of whatever he’s planning while the Ultimate spy is undeniably intelligent Ryota doesn't trust him. The Spy seems to have little care of Komaeda’s actual well being and views this more as a game. For that reason he will make some adjustments.

If Kimura really is in on this then the name might be fake instead he will change his disguise to that of a school official he already had a few on him then he will use physical descriptors when asking to help find him. Or if he left, he might be.

Komaeda might try to hide in the crowd. It's unlikely though as he knows the Lucky student gets uncomfortable in crowded areas so he’s most likely in his room. If that's the case he will need help locating it which makes questioning the reserve course mandatory.

Slipping into a dark corner to mask himself in his disguise which he quickly does he began to approach the large brick building. Approaching the structure he couldn’t help but notice a cold change in the atmosphere.