We Are Also Hated
"Are we really that loved?" Makki asked all of a sudden.
It was just after a show and the boys were sitting around the table reading their fan-mail. They had changed back to their civilian clothes and were eating snacks while reading. Cat stood on his perch outside, listening to their conversation but making no comments.
"What do you mean, Makki?" Kakeru asked.
Shun made an annoyed expression. "You always start the weirdest conversations, don't you, Makki?" he said.
"No, I'm making an intelligent conversation," Makki replied Shun, and then to Kakeru, "I meant that... Do we ever get hate-mail? I mean, we are getting quite popular."
"I don't see why we'd be hated," Tommy said, looking at his stack of fan-mail.
"Don't be so naïve, Tommy," Kira said. "Before our first show, we already got hate-mail for trying to revive Shounen Hollywood."
"But then..." Tommy said, opening another letter. "Why don't we ever find any in our fan-mail?"
"Tesshi obviously hides them from us," Kakeru said.
"But how would he know it's hate-mail?" Tommy asked.
"Well," Shun said, "if you shine light underneath the letters, you should be able to see the words. That way, Tesshi doesn't need to open the letters."
"I bet Tesshi keeps all our hate mail in his lower drawers," Kakeru said.
"You really think so?" Makki asked.
"We can always check," Kakeru said, shrugging.
"Right," Kira said, putting down his fan-mail like blackjack cards. "Who's gonna go check?"
No one replied him.
"Wow, we're really doing this," Makki said, his voice a loud whisper.
"Hey, you brought the topic up!" Shun hissed.
The five of them were now leaning from the door-frame into the president's office. At one corner was Tesshi's desk. When the coast was clear, the five darted in as quietly as possible.
"Check the last drawer," Kakeru instructed.
Kira knelt down and pulled open the said drawer. There were only some documents.
"Guys, it's in the trash," Shun said, looking into the waste paper basket.
Makki boldly dug into the garbage and came up with a handful of letters, either addressed to Shounen Hollywood, or to specific idols.
"Okay," Makki said, "which first?"
"The one for Shounen Hollywood, I suppose...?" Kakeru said.
Makki nodded and chose a letter. "I'm a bit afraid to open this..."
"I know how you feel," Tommy said, nodding.
"I bet it'll say 'Shounen Hollywood is GAY!!!', or something like that," Shun said.
Taking a deep breath, Makki opened the envelope and slipped out the letter folded in quarters. As Makki unfolded the letter, the other four stood behind him or leant in from the sides. Makki smoothed the letter, and it read: 'SHOUNEN HOLLYWOOD IS SO GAY!!!'
"I knew it," Shun said, unimpressed.
"We're an idol group comprised of five pretty boys," Kira said. "It was bound to happen."
"There are some addressed to us too," Tommy noted. "I'm not sure if I want to read them..."
"I'm kinda curious, to be honest," Shun said. He picked up an envelope and ripped open the top. He tipped it over and the letter falls out. Shun unfolded it, it said: 'Shun is so lame. He needs a better self-intro.' "I knew someone would insult my self-intro!"
Kakeru picked up one for him and opened it. His said: 'Kakeru is not sexy at all!'
Not that I ever thought I was anyway, Kakeru thought. Below the statement was: 'And his self-intro is more stupid! What the hell is he even trying to say?!' Wish I knew too, buddy.
"This one's about my eyelashes," Makki commented, holding out the letter for Kakeru to see. Kakeru refused.
Tommy and Kira have yet to open any one of their hate-mail.
"I really don't wanna open them..." Tommy said.
"Then, don't," Kira replied. "I'm not going to, either."
"If you don't mind..." Shun said, suddenly appearing beside them and reaching for their letters.
Shun opened a letter for Tommy. He winced, "Wow, harsh."
"Wh-What did it say?" Tommy asked. Shun was going to show the letter to him but them Tommy refused, "No, no! Don't show me!"
"What does it say about Tommy?" Makki asked. He and Kakeru leant over Shun's shoulders. Makki made a face and Kakeru's eyes widened.
"That's mean..." Kakeru commented.
"The way you say it makes me want see," Tommy said. Shun offered again but Tommy stated, "No! I don't wanna!"
"What do you think they say about Kira?" Makki asked.
"Kira's about the same level as Tommy," Kakeru said.
"Huh? What do you mean by 'same level'?" Kira asked.
"I meant like," Kakeru explained, "to the fans, the both of you are, like... the youngest? You know... the kiddy duo with... effeminate voices...?"
Kira stared at Kakeru for a while before hypothesizing, "The letter calls Tommy 'gay', doesn't it?"
"Actually, it said Tommy had a terrible singing voice," Makki corrected. Kakeru, who was known to be normally unassertive, elbows Makki in the ribs, hard.
"Oh," Tommy said in a faint voice, looking down. He was obviously depressed.
Kira patted Tommy's shoulder encouragingly. "Don't take that seriously. They're just jealous. You are a good singer."
"Am I?" Tommy asked with large sad eyes.
"Of course!" Makki said enthusiastically. "How could you doubt yourself like that?!"
Meanwhile, Shun had just opened a letter for Kira. He accidentally read it aloud, "'Is Kira a girl or a boy?'"
"What?!" Kira said, shocked. He ripped the letter out of Shun's hands and reads it again. "Of course I'm a boy! Why would anybody ask that?"
"Well, I suppose if Kira wore a dress..." Kakeru said but shut his mouth when he saw Kira's death glare.
"Don't worry, Kira!" Makki said. "Boy or girl, you're still awesome!"
"I don't need to be reminded that," Kira muttered.
Shun was still reading the letters for Tommy and Kira. "Most of these question their gender and sexuality," he told them. "Mine commented on my appearance and my self-intro."
"Same here," Kakeru said. "They kept saying that my self-intro doesn't make sense, not that I disagree or anything."
"Well, one of mine said I look like thug with my costume," Makki said.
"Where's the lie?" Shun asked sarcastically.
"They even said I was a Daichi clone!" Makki said. "But they can't knock me down with that!"
"Yeah," Kira said, "haters are just a couple of jealous cowards."
"Who cares about them!' Tommy said.
After regaining their confidence, the boys gathered the ripped-open letters and threw them back into the trash can. They left as silently as they had entered, not realizing that President had been listening to them the whole time.
The President smiled.