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Model Citizens

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"The little rabbit isn't here today?" Wataru inquires, sauntering into 3-B on a rare whim. He doesn't usually have much memory for who's in his classes, but he likes Nazuna and noted that they were in the same class the first time he decided to show up.

"Nah, he's just taking Tsumugi to the infirmary," Kuro answers. Wataru's mild concern fades hearing that and he wonders if he should feel bad about it.

"What's the matter with him?"

"A desk fell on him," Kuro shrugs.

"Oh, is that all?" Wataru raises his eyebrows. He doesn't know much about his fine predecessor, though maybe he ought to now that the other is in a unit with Natsume. The thought bothers him, though, and now isn't really the time to get into it.

"Weirder than that, though, what're you doing here?"

"Is it so strange for a student to enter his own classroom~?" Wataru sing-songs. "Alas, it seems it is, if that student is myself! For whenever I deign to enter it is a surprise! How wonderful!"

Kuro just eyes him. "You talking to me or yourself?"

"Why, neither, of course!" he answers. "Rather, it'd be more accurate to say that I am speaking, and you are welcome to listen...?"

Kuro chuckles, clasps his hands together behind his head and leans back in his seat.

"Sounds kinda lonely. Like shouting in an empty alley or something."

Well, that is why Wataru came here in the first place.

"Would you have much experience with that, Kuro?" he questions, and Kuro sits up again, elbows propped on the desk. 

"Well that's just getting personal," he says. "Plus you didn't even answer my question, so."

Wataru flounces down into the chair next to Kuro's. It's not his desk but he can pretend he doesn't know that and no one will question it.

"Everyone has a secret, so they say, yes?"

Kuro's head lolls to his shoulder. "You've got more than average though, yeah? Makes sense, though, since you're an Oddball and friends with that Tenshouin and all that."

"Or perhaps I'm an Oddball because I have secrets?" Wataru suggests. 

"Mm. Yeah, maybe," Kuro agrees. He has this... casual ease about him that Wataru finds almost baffling. It's the kind of thing that's easy to understand or imitate in theory but that he can't really begin to imagine putting into practice himself. Perhaps that's what happens when everyone you're connected with has a major tendency to overthink.

"Why did you come to class today, Kuro?" Wataru ventures, and Kuro's brows knit together.

"I come to class every day," he says. "I mean, I guess you wouldn't know."

"I do know, in fact!" Wataru corrects. "Or rather, I could extrapolate it by the fact you're here every time I am here, and that would be quite an impressive and unbelievable coincidence were it not because you attend often."

"Right, yeah, so why the question?"

"Well, it wasn't always this way, yes?" Wataru persists, wondering if saying so will make Kuro hate him. "But besides that, people who show up every day have a reason for doing so, even if it's for such a mundane reason as 'It has never occurred to me not to go to a class when I have one.'" He says the last part in his best Hokuto voice, because he's certain that's Hokuto's only reason.

"Fair enough," Kuro sits up, and Wataru's muscles release some tension. "Well, I'm tryna clean up my act, y'know? I decided I don't wanna live that kinda life anymore. Plus, I dunno. I got kids looking up to me now, yeah? Don't wanna set a bad example."


"Hmm... 'Kuro Kiryu, model citizen', then?" Wataru grins. 

"Nah, now you're just embarrassing me," Kuro laughs. "I couldn't be that, anyway. But I don't have to be 'Kuro Kiryu, delinquent' either."

Wataru glances at the clock. "Where is our distinguished teacher, anyhow?" He can't remember who their teacher is.

"Who knows. Barely anyone here's ever where they're s'pposed to be."

Kuro rubs his neck and something in Wataru sinks, down, down, down toward his feet with all the force of gravity he's been teaching himself to defy. 

"You're here, though, Kuro."

"I'm here," Kuro nods firmly. "And so are you, today."

Wataru blinks. "Yes," he ponders. "Today, I suppose I am."