Crossover Fan Fiction ❯ My Unfortunate Whale Vision ❯ FOUR ( Chapter 4 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Chapter 4


“Umm.. Could you help me train for tennis?” asked the girly boy Saika from my classroom. We were in the Service Club after school when he showed up and made his request.

“Yeah, I don’t know if you noticed, but I have a cane. I can’t move that well, definitely no tennis. Are either of you good at tennis?” I asked the women. I won’t call them girls. I see them in middle age, after all. The only girls I know are prepubescent kids and my sister, who is starting to have flashes of adult fatness and wrinkles like all the other women. I held onto the purity of my sister longer than anyone else I know. It is sad, yes.

“Not really. I’m a bit clumsy,” offered Yuigahama. With her big hips and bigger tits, I could easily believe she’d get in her own way.

“I like tennis, but my stamina is a problem,” admitted Yukinoshita. “Is there someone with a more sporting background who can help you practice, maybe from your own team?” she asked. A good point. He shook his head no.

“I’m the best on my team anymore. The best players graduated to third year and are trapped in studying and test taking for college entrance exams. The new players are not very good and can’t help me. I’m… sorry. Thanks for listening.” The boy packed up his things and the meek personality would someday lead to a meek adult with glasses, a terrible job that bullied him, and a life no one would envy. I can’t do anything for him. And I feel terrible about it.

The three of us looked at each other, defeated. Sometimes you just can’t help. As it happened a day later we managed to witness Saika playing against Miura, who despite her fat blimp future to my eyes was actually light on her feet and good at tennis. I could see the potential for romance between the two players, though she was the type to hen-peck a boy with her combination of gyaru girl aspirations and disappointment over being discarded by Hayama. Hayama in turn wore a haggard face and false smile mask like some kind of sleazy salesman, probably his future. The kind who screwed around and paid all his money into alimony and child support. His wasted youth soughing his wild oats, so they said in English, would eventually turn into Family Court settlements and wage garnishment. He wasn’t brave enough to disappear in the night, so Hayama would pay and pay for the mistakes he made in his youth.

The big upside to Whale Vision, which is as good a name as any for what I see, is I won’t be fooled by temporary youth, of the appeal that young women weaponize into a marriage contract that would give her half of everything when she broke it. Never sign a contract with someone who gains by breaking it. Love? Hah. A temporary madness. Affection? A lie women use to their financial advantage. Devotion? Another lie, an abusable loyalty that turns men into munitions, aimed at something which will destroy them for a temporary advantage, and women don’t think long term so temporary advantages are enough to satisfy them, for a little while. It begs the argument that sapience is different between the sexes. Why push the idea that women are equals in every form of popular media unless they really aren’t? Why push “love” and “romance” unless it is a lie? These are great truths most men only learn in their divorce, when it is too late, and few men will even warn their sons of the danger. And I could see it coming, making me nearly unique in this world. Even if it’s just a hallucination, the warning is useful. Seeing what people will become, seeing the ugly inside reveal itself.

“Niisan? I need your help,” Komachi announced that afternoon, after I returned home. We were cooking dinner together.

“Oh?” I asked.

“The boy I walk to school with? His name is Taishi Kawasaki. His sister is in your class. She’s been coming home late and he’s worried she’s become a delinquent, or worse. Can you look into it and fix this situation?” Komachi asked.

“How late?” I asked her.

“Dawn,” she answered. Komachi reads above her grade level. She knew what that could mean. Compensated dating, another term for teen prostitution. The sole attractive woman in my class getting used by older men for her body is upsetting. Particularly since Komachi’s awareness of this suggested she was interested in Taishi. Saki might end up my sister-in-law in a few years.

“Hmm. I guess I could put this forward to the Service Club,” I answered.

“Oh, there was one thing. Taishi said he answered the phone once and it was her boss from Angel something. He wasn’t sure what.”

“That’s helpful. I’ll look into it,” I promised.

The following day I laid out the situation in the club room. The two women considered this, Yukino looking darkly speculative and Yui very uncomfortable. Saki wasn’t part of her normal clique so she rarely spoke to her. Saki rarely spoke to anyone but the teachers when called on, and never volunteered. Considering she had at least one sibling, this left me feeling like she had succeeded where I had failed. Maybe my poking the bear with my essay on youth is the start of my problems. If only I hadn’t written it. If only I’d properly kept my thoughts to myself like Saki did. Sigh.

“So we just need to identify this Angel place and confront her there to convince her to return home,” decided Yukino. That sounded simplistic.

“What if its just a job to make money?” I asked.

“It can’t be legal if she’s working until dawn,” reminded Yukino. I sighed. This is unfortunately true.

Yui was typing on her phone.

“There’s a Fallen Angel café in downtown Chiba, where the shops are like Akihabara. It’s a Maid Café,” Yui explained, apparently knowing about such things. She was a modern girl so I guess I can’t be surprised.

“That sounds like it has potential. How late are they open?” I asked.

“They close at 8 PM,” she said. “That’s weird. So it can’t be that one.”

“Not unless it turns into a bar and brothel after that,” suggested Yukino darkly. As much as I hate to admit it, such things did exist. There are cafes during the day that turned into wine or sake bars after dark. Double the income on the same premises, provided you can staff the completely different hours.

“Any other Angel locations?” I asked Yui. She nervously searched.

“There’s the Angels Ladder bar in the Royal Okura Hotel downtown,” she answered. It was the tallest building in Chiba, 30 stories high, and the bar offered a full view of the city, the theme park, Tokyo Bay and Tokyo across it. It was a prestigious location.

“That has to be it. With her looks and demeanor, Saki can probably pass herself off as an adult at a high-class bar,” I suggested. Yukino nodded agreement.

“We should meet there. Dress up like some college-age over 20’s out for a nightcap,” ordered Yukino.

 We met that evening at the entrance to the hotel. I’d emphasized my Yakuza looks, showing my terrible eyes, and the women had turned up, Yukino in a little black dress that made me open my eyes to see properly, a brief vision of slender appeal against her pale skin. She’d traded her usual ugly glasses for stylish frames, a slightly playful classic look. Yuigahama was in an orange dress that suited her coloration and gave her enough distinction with heels to pretend to be 20, the legal drinking age in Japan. My eyes involuntarily closed and their usual looks wrinkled and expanded to what I was used to, their middle aged selves, as they would be eventually. Or how my hallucinating brain suspected it to be so, in any case. Damn Orimoto. The only thing that would be worse is if I saw them fat and naked. I’d probably have immediately gone off to forestry school to be a fire tower spotter, rarely speaking to people again.

“Hikki… you look like a hoodlum,” Yui whispered once we were in the elevator alone, heading for the top floor and the bar.

“I am reliably informed that nobody would dare inquire anything of me when I look like this. Ehhh?!” I grunted. Yui and Yukino recoiled back from the last.

“Yes, you seem to have found your calling. A pity that all the Yakuza are in prison,” Yukino pronounced.

“Hah! Haven’t you been to a festival? Those are all Yakuza-run stalls,” I contradicted the uptight woman. She hmphed in derision. The elevator doors opened and we composed ourselves, Yui taking my arm as I escorted them to the bar, opening the door for the women as you’d expect. It was classy. Really classy. Amazingly fancy. There was a Concert Grand Piano with the top open, someone playing light jazz piano on it, careful lighting, women in sequined dresses or even a few better kimono, and some party people in a nook decompressing from their week. It was Friday, after all.

“Found her. She’s tending bar,” reported Yui into my ear. Yukino evidently heard, following us there.

“It seems that Cinderella’s hour is up,” declared Yukino, stepping to the bar. Saki, still pretty to my eyes, looked up, squinted, passed over me without stopping, then recognized Yui.

“Oh, no,” she said flatly. “You people. I would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn’t for you meddling kids.” I have to say, her delivery was perfect.

“Bravo. But as your future brother in law, I request you cease this employment and go home. Taishi is worried about you.”

“What? Brother what?” asked Yui with confusion. Yukino raised an eyebrow.

“Who? Oh. You’re Hachiman aren’t you? Taishi said something about his girlfriend having a brother in my class.”

“Those two will marry if they keep on like this. That make you my future sister in law.” She considered this a moment.

“Okay, I admit this is possible,” she said. “But you didn’t ask why I’m working. As future family, you should put in the effort.”

“You need the money, obviously. The question is what do you need the money for?” I answered. She didn’t say. She just stared back.

“When you can answer that question, and find me a solution, I’ll consider quitting. Until then, go home. You can tell Taishi where I work, if you want, but don’t come here and mess this up.”

“Yeah yeah. Get some sleep before you come back to school. If you don’t sleep your brain stops working right and you won’t be able to learn anything.”

“Tch. Scram.” She shooed us away. We left the bar and the hotel.

“I’m tired. I’ll see you at club on Monday,” I told them, hopping the late bus. The girls were getting into a black limo I sort of recognized from somewhere.

The following Monday Yui escorted Saki to our clubroom. I’d learned some things from my sister, perceptive girl that she is, off of Taishi.

“So, do you have an answer for me?” Saki asked as the door slid shut.

“Yes. A month ago Taishi started cram school so he could study to get into Soubu with my sister.”

“So its your fault,” accused Yukino. I gave her a look. Her middle aged harridan glare was an obvious future, suiting her personality right down to the ground. I pity her future spouse, if there was one.

“Taishi’s schooling isn’t free. He’s actually at the same place I’m going, or planning to visit this summer anyway. I also noticed Kawasaki here looking in the window with what I can only call a wistful expression. What do you want to study in college, Saki-san?” I asked her directly. Her haggard face stared back.

“Clothing design,” Saki answered. “Tech schools only teach you technique, and that’s just low paid work. I have to go to college if I want to design clothes and get paid when other people make them for me. I came to Soubu specifically so I could go that route.”

“But your family doesn’t have the money to send you both to cram school, and Seika needs attention too, with both your parents working for Taishi’s tuition. There isn’t enough for you,” I explained. Yui and Yukino understood now.

“So you took that job to raise enough money for cram school tuition. It is rather pointless if you wreck your grades at Soubu and lose the recommendations from your teachers here.”

“If you’re so smart, what’s the solution?” Saki replied sarcastically.

“Ever heard of a scholarship?” I asked her.

Even Sensei, who hates me, had to admit my solution to this problem was flawless and gave me full marks.