Ayame explained everything to Ai and me the next day diligently. She additionally told the other heroes about her worries. The contents surprised me; she wasn't dating Jiro after all. Well, that's the logical conclusion. It also turned out to be a whole lot more sinister. A mind-controlling power without mana...the heroes might find it hard to comprehend. However, I, who has an 'awakened mind' have reference to what the phenomena could be.
Ayame's words are true no doubt, so the only conclusion I could reach is that. But, how? He isn't a [Magical Girl] and even if he was a special case like me, his power would be inaccessible...I'll put aside the 'how' for now since it seems like a hopeless question.
What's also important here is the 'what.' What is he doing with this power? The student council president is ordinarily seen as the model for all of us--with a special ability, he should be utilizing it for good no? That might be the case, but it's also the case that he used it to get his way with Ayame. That is something I can't forgive. It's also something that makes me question if he uses it for even worse things.
"We're confronting him this instant."
"Woah! That's bold...and incredibly reckless."
"It's the easiest way instead of sniffing around his tracks meaninglessly when we know something is up. We have the power to do it."
"Is this the assertiveness of a [Demon Lord]?"
It also might be arrogance.
"Oh stop it."
We tried to see Jiro then, only to be shut out and told he was busy. So, we settled for an appointment to talk. It will be in the student council room at the end of the school day. I prepare, mentally.
Kanon Watanabe: 3rd year, sharp shot of the Kyudo (Japanese archery) Club, much like Rino with a bubbly personality, assertive, mischievous, and older sister to Keito Watanabe. I've seen her practice archery many times in passing and am always impressed. She has good form (though I wouldn't know too well) and underlying composure.
Seriously, does Keito--who's always obsessing over idols and whatnot--appreciate such an awesome person so close to him? Even Chiho Hoshikawa, the new vampire transfer student, sits next to you dude. A cute blond bishoujo is your neighboring seatmate, how many do you think would pay for that experience!?
Well, that's enough on that. Hm? Why am I suddenly talking about Kanon Watanabe? It's because we've been chatting recently--it was completely unexpected. It all started when the chemistry teacher kept me in to finish a lab and record results...my lunch was shortened to a mere 10 minutes!
Well, I get that chemistry is important. If I understood it more, maybe my mana attribute imagery and effectiveness would rise. The system of imagining fantasy elements for attribute mana is strange anyways--why can't I just clad my sword in other things like radioactive material? Well, it might be because I can't picture reactions and molecules clearly while I can other elements from games and whatnot. Would it help if I looked under a microscope...though that'd be expensive.
It would probably benefit me to pay attention more in physics too, all the sciences actually since those concepts and images can do wonders when combined with magic. In the first place, their existences are contradictory! I'm creating energy willy-nilly! If I can make my magic stronger just by utilizing BASIC concepts of the universe--that's just unfair (ex: I can somehow fly by using basic kinematics and Newtonian mechanic imagery + [Gravity Magic]). Why can't I jus--and I'll stop it there or else the pillars that hold up the supernatural elements of this story will be void. Back to the point,
While I was scarfing down food in a different place than usual (not with my hero friends), I was approached by Watanabe-senpai. She had been running around the track for a while and veered off in my direction after seeing me; she didn't lose speed. So, when she appeared in front of me, she was out of breath. Keep in mind that I didn't know her at all at the time.
The sun illuminates the fine curves of her figure drenched in sweat. As Yu Ishigami would say and observe, she was fit for Kyudo too. Her ponytail, similar to Ayame's which was singular and tied neatly, is short and the color of ink. Her eyes are blue like the water's halfway point between the shore of a tropical island and the ocean.
I decided to play along with her. I gave her my water bottle obediently, albeit confused. <Indirect Kiss Acquired>
I grabbed my nearby notebook and began to frantically fan her face.
I was getting sick of it by now but still complied. She opened her mouth to receive what was between my approaching chopsticks.
"Why thank you."
"Did you make this?"
It was just leftover fried rice that I made last night...you're impressed with that?
"The texture, the flavor, the harmony, I feel it all too much--you are a master chef no doubt about it!!!"
Being praised this much is either overexaggerated flattery or mockery. I receive it gratefully anyway.
"What's your name?"
"Fuu~ well I'm Kanon Watanabe, Harada-kun. So, do you cook often?"
"Well yeah, I make my own meals."
"It's the same for me ehe. Well, I also have to make it for my pesky brother."
"Anyways, do you cook anything else?"
"I specialize in not specializing in anything so I guess I'm an all-rounder in cooking? I can generally do a lot of things given the ingredients."
"Hmm, is that so. You're interesting Harada-kun, I don't think a lot of guys cook."
"Are you sure about that? I think there are a lot that do actually..."
--the conversation continues from there--
Well, this was the level of interaction. From that one time onwards, she was somehow always able to coincidentally bump into me and then talk to me. After school in an empty hallway, passing by when I'm cleaning an empty classroom, in the empty section of the library besides me...is something happening here?
Also, her sociability level stemming from being completely open is a tactical weapon against a reserved person like me. I end up telling her things about my personal life I don't say usually. Of course, nothing of ground-breaking importance.
It's nearing the end of the school day: one class is left, and then the confrontation. On the way to it, I see a familiar curled-up figure to the side of the stairs. I notice her, Kanon Watanabe-senpai. Is she feeling down? Honestly, knowing her, I want to know why...I want to help~!
She faces upwards looking a bit haggard but nonetheless energetic.
"Ah, Harada-kun. We meet again."
Cutting to the point, she sighs.
"I got this re~ally troublesome request at work."
"You have a part-time job?"
"Yeah, something like that."
"I'm not well-versed in that area but I can listen to it if it makes you feel better."
I do have experience, though not a conventional one so I made a convenient response.
"Thanks, Harada-kun. I can't go into details but, it's a really troublesome assignment. They could get other people to do it, but since they know I'm competent they make me do it."
She called herself competent.
"Doesn't that just show how much they trust you?"
"I don't know, I can't shake the feeling that I'm being used."
--The conversation goes on as she rants about poor working conditions and the like--
"I can't believe it! I work the best and hardest out of all of them and all I get is a 'good work?'"
"Should you expect anything else...?"
"The bosses probably just don't like me."
"Uhm, it'll get better?"
My advice is half-assed and honestly bad. Well, she doesn't really want advice--just someone to vent to. I get it. I don't get why a kouhai you barely know is qualified though. After a bit more ranting she finally got it all out of her system,
"Now then, I'm fine for the time being. Thanks for listening, I'll somehow deal with this on my own like I always do."
Truly a strong senpai. If you give her a bow and that becomes literal too.
"I hope things get better for you senpai, I really do. If not, bring it up with them."
I know action is what is required to turn the gears of the world.
"Thanks again Harada-kun, see ya~"
I wave goodbye. Let's see what the time is...shoot. I completely missed my last class and the start of the appointment with Jiro kaichou! I check my phone with some messages from Ai and Ayame before the appointment saying 'where are you?'
While I was listening and responding to Watanabe-senpai, I left two girls to a man who has mind control powers! They're strong--but Ayame could be put under control. Is there a limit to controlling people? I run quickly to the student council room. Please, be okay!
Ai and Ayame POV:
Outside the student council office,
"Hmm, Akito's not responding. Strange..."
"Do you think this has anything to do with Jiro?"
"It might, though it's unlikely."
"Well, we can't afford to wait anymore. It might be risky to go in, but we have our own powers on our side. We should trust in them."
"That's true, but shouldn't we get help from the other heroes? No, when we meet him they'll become targets of his too. I'll just provide them with information."
"We only have this appointment today...he seems to be busy for a while after this."
"Guh, let's just do it."
They knock and receive a confirmation to enter. They do so with cautious steps. A room with three people alone closes with a slight gap in between the door.
"Welcome, Nakano-san, Suzuki-san...what can I do for you today?"
"Nakamura-kaichou, I'll get straight to the point. That power you have, its mind control isn't it?"
His expression darkens and becomes serious. The remnants of his business smile before have crumbled.
"That reaction was all I needed, I thought you'd be better at hiding your feelings."
"No, it's just that I was surprised. To think you'd say something so ridiculous."
"I have no idea what you're talking about. 'Power?'"
Ignoring his obviously fake pleas of innocence,
"With that power, how many did you manipulate? How many did you use for your own desires?"
His lips curve up into a disgusting smile.
"Ai, restrain her."
Ai suddenly grabs Ayame roughly by the throat and pins her down.
"Hahaha! It's lucky that you had a [Magical Girl] with superior physical strength waltz on over here. With this...she's under my control, you have no such power to resist."
Ayame spun the circuits in her head. If he could control minds, he could've solved this by controlling us both no? Unless...he can only control one person at a time!
"Only controls one at a time..."
"Yes, it's an unfortunate limited yet limitless power (the power to make one person follow the will of the user). Oh and I'll answer your earlier question too seeing as I've won this one already. It won't matter once you're my slaves...I have used this power for the past couple of months to get my way with 27 of this institution's best. From just teasing to full-blown ***. In addition, I've used it to steal local business funds, connect with big names, even kill a few people. The Shouden family and company, remember them? It was I who did them in. The influential politician Haruto too, he's wrapped around my finger. The ones who own the bank down the block...they've embezzled quite the sum for me. It's the best feeling--it truly is. To be special, a winner in life!"
"You disgusting pervert! You damned criminal!"
You keep flapping that big mouth of yours don't you? What kind of idiot would be bragging about committing felonies!?
"You won't think that way soon. Well, I don't hate that crudeness of yours Ayame."
Suddenly, an unexpected person entered the room nonchalantly. With an expression of achievement, she adjusted her glasses from the front. Shina Arakawa voiced her thoughts,
"I knew something was up."
Jiro turned to face her and frowned,
"A nuisance has appeared."
(Note: If the story is hard to follow or you want something technical clarified feel free to leave a comment)