Chisa paced in the hallway outside the main office of the Neurology Lab. Gekkogahara, when contacted, began to rush towards the academy but would only arrive in the morning. Until then she asked them to bring Nagito to the office so she can talk to him in the morning. However, upon their arrival, The Ultimate Neurologist berated them for knocking him out which was appropriate for his talent and insisted on checking up on him.
Initially, the two did have some pretenses as Komaeda’s Condition leaking could ruin everything they worked for. On top of that, he was also very rude about it, like it was almost impressive how much he managed to insult them in so few words. Which didn’t help the already on-edge Sakakura. The only reason they let him go through is his apparent already knowing of the situation combined with the potential good a medical check-up could provide.
In Fact, it was actually suspicious how much he knew Gekugohara telling him about the dementia as a neurologist is possible. However, his knowledge of the school's purposeful coverup to study luck already suggests a knowledge of the school's corruption and underhand actions that could only be found through two means. Hours of research through old files or a partnership.
That only raises further questions but for now, it can wait. If he tries anything then… Chisa will just have to join Sakakura in beating the crap out of him. He's kinda tall but still a scrawny kid and if he does anything to make the last few days for nothing she will punish him for it.
Either way, Matsuda Yasuke is now with Komaeda on the tell Munakata list. If Chisa was honest she really didn’t want to drag Munakata into this if anything keeping her class away from the corruption was a top priority. They were all good kids Chisa knew that and the corruption that was growing out of the academy was not their fight if anything at this point she was doing it for them. to turn Hope’s Peak back to what it was. Also what it should always be?
Granted her wants didn’t matter at the moment, Komaeda was never going to be far away from the corruption it had held him from the moment he arrived. He’s here to be a lab rat. It was no wonder Komaeda put so much stock in talent. He loves this academy and they only care about his talent.
Then the thought flashed in Chisa’s mind. Did Komaeda know this is what the steering committee thought of him? He somehow knew about their mission if he was able to find that out who’s to say he couldn’t have put the school's intentions together already? It might be why he refuses to get help. Komaeda loves the school. There is no doubt in her mind if they promised him this would bring Hope he would avoid all help to assist in it.
Chisa's stomach began to turn at the thought of it. The image of Komaeda laying on a hospital bed not surrounded by his classmates or Gekkogahara and herself. Instead, a group of scientists checking his vitals waiting for his body to give out so they could dissect him and see the anomalies his talent produced. As he dies he smiles thinking this somehow brings greater hope. “What kind of sick twisted thing coming out of that could be called hope?” She found herself mumbling out loud.
Taking a deep breath she pulled out her phone. It was about time for her Update to Munakata. He already knew parts of the situation but these updates might prove crucial. While she would have preferred to keep Munkata out of it with her student knowing too much and being connected to the corruption made this situation intrinsically tied to their mission thus Munakata's business With a quick click and pick up it began.
Once Chisa was done she was met with silence as Munakata thought over the situation. She held off telling the guinea pig stuff initially in an attempt to avoid dragging Komaeda into this. In the present it had clearly failed. He knew too much to be kept out.
“What happened to this school? Was it like this when we went there and we just never noticed the glitz and glamor of the honor serving as rose-tinted glasses?” It was rare to see Munkata this upset when he gets like this he becomes almost like a different person. Cold and vengeful a terror for anyone to get in the way of.
“I think when we went they were more mask on, they cared more to keep it hidden,” Chisa responded with her own thoughts on the matter having thought similar thoughts herself at this point.
“All they care about is talent.” Munakata's voice was bitter and jagged. Just listening to it was almost painful. “The person means nothing to the Academy, it's just the Talent there capable of!” He roared the second half with a controlled fury despite his rage Chisa could tell it was controlled and aimed at the right source.
“So what will we do with Komaeda?” She hated having to ask but it was the big question. Sakakura wanted the lucky student expelled so he was out of the way. Of course, Chisa was against such an action for obvious reasons. So with little choice, she had to see Munakata’s insight.
With a very audible sigh, Chisa could tell she would not like what would come next. “The best thing to do for everyone is to get him expelled.” Chisa had expected this she hoped he wouldn’t but Munkata and Sakakura being on the same page were a given even if they don’t discuss it. The only real difference is that Sakakura comes to the conclusion based on instinct and can’t convince while Munakata can make a logical solution and put it together that way. Chisa herself fits into the dynamic as an in-between that gets there on instinct but has some method to their madness.
Said madness being empathy. Grated with that it also means she came to their exact conclusion. However? “You know I can’t do that.” It was a fact that if Komaeda left they would never see him again he would just disappear. His attendance is the only thing keeping him around. Even then it was an act of terrible luck on Komaeda’s part that she even guessed his password.
“Yukizome can understand your fear but I have no intention of leaving him alone. I'm going to hire him.” This caught the teacher's attention and she listened in on what he had to say.
“Once he’s expelled we’ll recruit him if he was smart enough to catch on to us that more than fits the bill. It will be under the table though as we can’t let the school catch on. They will do all they can to wipe away his existence but we can get him help. On top of that, if we can get evidence of the school's exploitation then he would be an even more valuable asset.”
The plan was logical and well thought out exactly what you would expect of Munakata. Even then it wasn’t right. If they expelled him and offered him a job he would probably take it. Assuming they can convince him he’s serving hope but then he’s still a tool and asset even if they can help his physical issues he would still be a tool to help them bring Munakata to power. Chisa tries to bring this up to him but of course, is met with a counter he had most likely already made to counter her expected descent.
“What other options are there?” He said turning the terrifying fury that was aimed at the school on her. What made it worse is that he has the right intentions; she just can’t see removing Komaeda from the school being good.
“I’ll keep a closer eye on him. We can have security follow him at all times. I'll check his room every day to make sure he’s not up to anything and we can use this event as blackmail over his head.” Chisa sputtered half listing ideas and half trying to make a coherent argument and plan against the seasoned debater.
Munakata could read the panic in her voice and proceed into silence for a second contemplating something before continuing.
“Yukizome, he has managed to deceive you twice. I know you care for him. O would never expect you not to, it's in your nature but he is a threat to our mission. By extension not just a threat to the rest of your students but everyone in the academy. I have offered you the best I can think of.” His frustration clearly started to show.
Chisa was not sure what it was, perhaps the stress of the last couple of days since finding out Komaeda’s issues had a larger effect on her than she thought. Maybe it was the fact that she was being forced to decide between one of her students and the man she loved and no matter how bad she wanted it her empathy would never let her make the choice she wanted.
Or perhaps it was the new image of Komaeda withering away in the middle of the pacific with no one around him to care but this time it wouldn't be the rotten academy but her that sent him to that fate the blood would be on her hands. Any of these reasons made sense, it could have all the above. The point being she snapped.
“Komaeda is going to die, Kyosuke! The only place with any chance of saving him is right here and even if they can’t his friends are here! I'm not going to send him away to die alone even if he’s a ‘threat’ no one deserves to die like that. Let alone a high schooler, the best I can do is make sure he has people who care for him when it happens!” Chisa was mad, no denying that but why shouldn't she be? Komaeda deserved at least that.
“We can fly you and his friends to him when the time comes he doesn't have to be alone,” Kysosuke said, keeping the quiet cool that made him so intimidating. Or on this occasion made her rapidly collapsing self-control becomes even more unstable. Not to mention the key part was the singularity of the sentence: they had a budget and flying out can only happen once. They both knew that.
“With his luck, he could drop any second. The best chance of keeping him happy is to keep him here. Besides, even if we did fly out his classmates to visit him on his deathbed, it could be the first time seeing him in potentially months and he’s about to die. Do you think that's good for them? That's not even counting Tsumiki; she literally prides herself on taking care of the sick, it’s her hobby. Do you really think finding out someone she knew had a terminal illness and no one even told her about it would be good for her!?
“You intend to tell her?” Kyosuke shot, making it clear this would be a firefight.
“Of course, I intend to tell her she might be able to help.” Chisa fired back.
“Or she will tell more people because that's what we need, setting off the powder keg and putting yourself at risk.” The cold rage had hit sub-zero as he tore through her arguments with logic going point by point.
“Doctor-patient confidentiality she wouldn't do that if Komaeda didn’t want her to and he clearly doesn't want anyone to know!”
“It doesn't matter if the story does leak, all the build-up would explode, reporters would flood the academy and stories would start getting leaked. We wouldn't be able to save the academy if he destroys it. Why take the chance.”
“Komaeda would never do that! He loves this academy so much he would never cause it to harm and in a game of chance the lucky student wins!”
“No Chisa he doesn't love the academy he loves his twisted vision of hope! Komaeda Nagito is a child who no one ever loved because all who tried died and because of this he was so miserable he grabbed onto the idea that someday someone could care for him. Then even that withered away and all that's left is a sociopath enriched by the suffering his luck has brought. He has so little agency in the world around him that everything is on the chopping block for his hope!”
The fury in his voice faded back to the one of logical reasons he normally stuck to as he regained control of himself and continued. “
“I've done my own background check after you told me about him. I saw the school's actual files on him, not just the wiped ones they give lower staff. Komaeda isn’t the victim of the corruption that has rotted away at the school at least not anymore he is just rotting himself twisted in body and mind. He’s what the school wants every student to be there is no sav-!”
“Let me save my kid dammit!” Chisa roared with a fanatical fire, no plasma at that point as bright as a star before it burnt out and all that was left was a whisper of a wail. She knows he’s just trying to help, Kyosuke would never yell like that otherwise in fact Chisa thinks it might be the first time he ever yelled. It didn’t matter because what he said was wrong, he might have been covered in rot but Komaeda wasn’t completely gone. He cared for his classmates. He defied the academy for his class. Their hopes don’t line up with his. Komeda's might be twisted but he still values the individual under the talent Hope’s Peak doesn't. She can see it with their hobbies and interest outside their talent. He still plays Mitarai and Nidai in Go even if it had nothing to do with their talent just because they like the game.
“Kyosuke do you trust me?” His breathing hitched at the question. Or at her noticeable tone shift.
After a long silence that felt for once felt shorter than it actually was he spoke “Yes Yukizome I trust you bu-.”
Chisa interrupted quickly, not allowing descent just like with her students. “Then trust me here, please. I know Komaeda’s a threat but he’s also my student and a good one with top grades and friends. So just let me handle this if he goes too far again we can do your idea but at least let me try?”
All that could be heard on the line for the next minute is breathing as he thought it out this one was way closer to your classic lasts eternity long silences.
“You really care for him and believe in him that much?… Fine I trust you take whatever precautions you see fit but, be careful Yukizome he’s smart, and to be honest, looking at what he has done up until now I'm glad he’s at least trying for the side of hope. I don’t want to imagine what someone as smart as him could do if he was more bitter.”
Chisa felt a smile crawl on her face as she answered. “Don’t worry I can keep the others under my control. What's putting more pressure on one? Also, I couldn’t help but notice you called me Chisa. Maybe you could.” She was interrupted by the sound of the phone hanging up.
With a shrug, she put her phone back into her pocket. It was a crazy night. The sad part was it wasn’t over she had to make a plan to keep Komaeda from doing stupid things. Telling Tsumiki would give her extra eyes and ears but that might not be enough. Either way, she needs to think of something. He cannot be allowed to continue whatever scheme he was preparing.
The Ultimate mechanic's super recycler, that's what Komaeda called it right? Apparently, the machine was able to take apart any metal machine with special magnets and turn the scraps into material he needs. It was the best evidence destroyer Seiko could think of at the moment. The encounter with the two ‘investigators’ had put the pharmacist on edge. Chances were her lie would soon fall through and when it did they would be on her.
While a part of her wanted to slap herself for not telling a more formidable lie the rest couldn't see a better one. Any other lie she could think of even now would be easily poked through with simple logic. Alternatively, it could have set suspicion on her earlier giving her even less time then she has at the moment. Steeling herself she decided now would be the only time she’s got.
Seiko didn’t really like the Olfaction-enhancing pill; the change in smell was disorienting. Currently though now would be the time to take them while she can afford that risk. Some people complain about swallowing pills whole, which she didn’t get. It was never really a problem for her but in all fairness, it was probably a skill she had taught herself without even knowing. When you need to take a lot of pills eventually water just becomes unneeded.
In an instant, her eyes became useless as the entire world became scents. She could even smell Komaeda in the distance. Not sure where he was exactly, but perhaps when this was over she could save him. Perhaps together they could track down this friend of a friend. If helping Komaeda in overcoming the impossible was any example, creating hopemit was a nice feeling. Even if they got-
A notable pattern broke her thoughts. A combination of Orange mixed with lavender the smell has been unchanging as she moved, always coming from the same general distance. In other words, whatever is producing the smell is staying in the same range as her as she moves along or basically following her.
With a quick barely noticeable twist of her wrist, Seiko snatched her steroid from her bag. True it still wasn’t done yet but it was well past the defects that had accidentally put Komaeda in bed for a day a couple of months back. That being said, it's about all she can promise the school was still getting her test results. While the defects are unknown she knows the benefits work and Seiko is no stranger to being a test dummy for her own products. Had to get a start somewhere after all.
Looking out into the darkness, Seiko called out. “I know you're there 's no point hiding.”
This was met with the familiar high-pitched chuckle. “I wasn’t exactly hiding but you finding me is still a surprise.”
Despite being unable to see him his smell gave him away as he was standing in the darkness. For anyone else, it would be easily noticeable but for Kamishiro he just blends in. Perhaps it’s a part of his talent, Ultimate nothing?
“Show yourself.” Seiko could smell him but was unable to see him was a bit unnerving.
“Okay, so you can’t see me that leaves sound and scent as the flaws. Good to know.” The small student said in a tone of interest almost as if comparing the options of sight or smell was more important than their conversation. Until he broke it.
“No point sticking to that, you know why I'm here so I will just get to the point where’s Komaeda?” Kamishiro’s tone shifted and his childlike excitement came off as almost degrading. Now he sounded suave, like a stereotypical kind of cool.
“How did you do?” He knew her lie? Was it really that bad Seiko had thought it was rather impressive blended truth with it no master liar's deception but at least complicated. .
“I kept an eye out on all four of you after the whole bomb threat and started to notice his visitation despite his ban on commissions,” Kamishiro revealed with a tone that made the grin that he definitely had on his face that much more infuriating.
“So you knew this the whole time then why-” Seiko tried to ask only being met with a cold intrusive voice.
“No no it's your turn ware is Komaeda?” He commanded with more force than before.
Why in the world did he think Seiko would ever tell him? Especially with him being a stalker who knew of their friendship, something Komaeda was at least passingly sure to keep quiet to avoid gossip about her, a sentiment Seiko appreciated. She tried to make that very clear to the child.
“You know you're a pawn right?” The suited student asked with a strange deadpan that wasn’t like this and admittedly caught her off guard.
“You don’t think so, I mean look at his plan to destroy the gym. Komaeda tried to threaten the school but when they refused he tried to set up explosives to destroy the gym. He has claimed it was for his classmates but as they were in grief for the loss of life do you really think a terrorist attack in their name would help? In fact, if anyone died they might feel even worse seeing the death as their own fault. That doesn't make sense as a motive but he did gain something from it. Let's review.”
He explained with his childlike wonder having returned full force he almost sounded like a child playing pretend or a fanboy explaining his favorite character's scheme. She tried to explain he intended to use the laxatives she gave him as a chemical weapon to make everyone flee the gym before it detonated but that pushed him further into a speech.
“But he didn’t end up with the laxatives Ando did and thanks to that you lost your only friends. Then who comes along but the very man who ruined said friendships with open arms? Now he has what might be the most versatile talent any student currently attending can provide.”
Seiko was silent. What do you say to this? Komaeda trying to use her is crazy. “Komaeda may have questionable ethics, especially with the gym incident but he’s not doing anything that nefarious.”
The Ultimate Pharmacist attempted to explain partially to convince him and partially to reassure herself. A part of her couldn’t help but notice the suited boy had a point. This did all seem convenient when you look at it like that but that could easily be Komaeda’s talent intervening.
“Of course, it’s not so bad now he’s using the boiling frog method to get you on his side. It started small being your friend. Then he asks for a favor, perhaps as a way to get close to you, or maybe he gives a small concession, something small to try and help you. Then it’s going to move to slightly bigger favors but seeing how it was only a bit bigger than the last it’s not out of control right?”
Seiko couldn't help but mumble out a response that was closest in tone to a lost puppy. “He never asked for a favor, he didn't want me to intervene, I just wanted to help him.”
“So you came to his aid without his even calling upon you, that just proves my point. If you're that loyal then next he’s going to try and sell you on his ‘hope’.” As he spoke she couldn't help but not notice the lack of maliciousness Kamishiro exuded. He sounded as if he was a teacher only giving the facts or a debater trying to win her over. Did it sound compassionate?
“No, I'm his friend.” She sputtered, seeming to have run out of fuel for her argument, not that her will on the matter was broken; she just couldn't think of anything to say. Komaeda was definitely her friend.
“That’s just not true,” Kamishiro said, his tone had changed to be more sympathetic.
“Komaeda has no friends, he has admitted himself multiple times even after you started to hang out. Now, why would he say that if he had you unless he doesn't consider you a friend.”
Seiko was silent, that couldn't be right… They were friends he's never contended that before on the matter then again how many times has that come up? Was tonight the first time? After mentioning it he began to have that breakdown. Was he panicking at me calling her friend? At that thought, her body froze up as the overly observant child continued to speak his words of distrust.
“I mean think about it if his class knew what he was up to and that you two were friends wouldn't they do something? They already don’t trust him and suddenly he’s with the person who made the class spiking sex drug.” He almost laughed at his ending comment once again raising the question of how he knew this.
“To him, you are nothing but a tool, just a talent that will help him in whatever his endgame is. So once again where is Komaeda Nagito?”
… Seiko needed to get out of here. She needed to think, true he might have a point but there was also a clear ulterior motive he wanted something out of her so the best thing for her is to think this over and get out. With that in mind, she popped the pill.
“Oh no you don’t.” She heard him shout almost immediately followed by a sharp pain in her leg. Looking down she was met with some sort of dart. Looking back up having been given a general direction she looked and in the shadows, she could see a golden gun.
Seiko’s first instinct was to attack but as the numbness started to spread from the dart flight took hold. Within seconds she was away from him jumping over buildings in a random direction. Slowly the numbness continued to overtake her until she could no longer move. Landing one last time with a thud, her legs no longer able to hold her. No idea how far she was away from him and at the moment she didn’t care she was so tired she just wanted to go to sleep. With that and the numbness overtaking what remained of her body everything went dark.