2020-06-13 - School Looms On The Horizon

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Title: School Looms On The Horizon

Niramo and Fumiko meet up to discuss what happened for the both of them over the summer. Plans for to deal with last minute procrastination is made and Fumiko has a suspicion confirmed.


Fumiko Inoue, Niramo Umokeshi


Shitamachi Low City - Game Center Crown

OOC - IC Date:

6/13/2020 - 9/5/2015

.**************************** Shitamachi Low City *****************************.
*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+ Game Center Crown +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+
 A blue sign with bright yellow and pink lettering announces the name of this  
 arcade, which is nestled in the bottom story of a tall white building,        
 emitting cheerful chiptunes and the chirps of digital battle onto the         
 street. The spacious room, painted in friendly pastels, is host to rows of    
 arcade games, all under the watchful eye of an attendant at a semicircular    
 counter in the back. Most of the games are aging, albeit gracefully, but      
 there are a few newer cabinets, including the very popular Sailor V game.     
 Most are controlled with buttons and joysticks, but there are a few equipped  
 with plastic guns, steering wheels with seating, or mini motorcycles, and of  
 course the ubiquitous Dance Dance Revolution station. Near the window, there  
 are a few crane games heaped with cheap stuffed toys, sometimes including     
 reproductions of whatever magical girl is making the rounds in the media      
 The Furuhata family runs this arcade, and their son, Motoki, works here       
 often. They also own the cafe right upstairs, called Fruits Parlor Crown,     
 where Motoki's younger sister Unazuki works as a waitress. Fruits Parlor      
 does a brisk business off arcade customers, and the arcade itself has a       
 perpetually sticky carpet due to the desserts and drinks brought from         
<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The month of September can be misleading to some, as there are those that picture the month as the beginning of the fall season. When the mind think of the season, it's likely to picture cooler tempatures, shorter days and the changing color of leaves as trees prepare for the winter months ahead. With it only being the beginning of September, however, the full strength of the summer sun overhead is quick to banish these mental illusions. There are some things that the high tempatures can not keep away forever, though...

Niramo Umokeshi gives the burger on the tray before her a half interested look, thoughts of other matters clearly on her mind. The burger isn't to blame for this, being finely crafted by the resturant staff in the upper floor of the Game Center Crown, nor is her friend at fault either. "I can't believe this is the last weekend before school starts up again..." She's dressed in a dark blue shirt and tan shorts and a red ribbon holding her ponytail, with her worn bookbag off to one side of the booth.

With a desponant sigh, Niramo takes a bite out of the American sandwich before looking up across the table. "Please tell me i'm not the only one who thought we had longer before it got here, Fumiko- chan. Did you get a lot done this summer, at least?" Maybe Fumiko had some interesting stories about her summer?

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Where had the summer gone? Time devoured it, leaving only too-short memories and the looming threat of oblivion - er, school. It was inevitable, wasn't it? Time could not be stopped.

But perhaps Fumiko could slow it down. Time flies when you are having fun, but if you could stretch out that time, take things at a leisurely pace, and not RUSH the fun... perhaps that could make the fun feel longer.

And that is precisely why Fumiko is hanging out with Niramo at one of their favorite hangouts - Game Center Crown - but taking her time eating her burger and savoring each bite. With a simple white blouse and short-ish skirt, she was keeping it simple and cool, although soon it would be too cold for that. "Yes... the last weekend... because school hasn't started the moment it ended. Homework... perfect for taking school into your sanctuary away from school."

Fumiko sighs as well, taking small sips from her soda and tiny nibbles of her burger. "You aren't the only one," she admits. "The summer seems to have ran away at full speed." As for what she did? Youma fighting, training, and the like was not something she could talk about, and tense situations at home, working on homework, and other 'fun' stuff was not something she WANTED to talk about. "Erm... oh! I went to the beach a couple times... read some books... practiced gymnastics... almost acted in a summer play... how about you?"

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Chewing thoughfully on her burger, Niramo thinks back on all that she's been doing over the summer. There was the obvious stuff that she couldn't talk about, like the attacks on Tokyo that she helped fended off and all those late nights looking around the city from the rooftops and practicing, but there were plenty that she did that was free to talk about as well.

Niramo motions with her right hand as she recalls the wonderful yet short summer memories of the past. "Well, there was this big pie-eating contest I was in, though a few of those pies were...questionable. Oh, and I been training with Ye-jin-san during the summer as well. I gotten really good at practicing dancing! Other than that, I just hid away indoors and either read books or played 'retro' video games. Got to do something when i'm home, after all."

Niramo takes another bite of her burger, starting to enjoy the flavour once more when something Fumiko said catches her attention. "Wait, you practice gymnastics? That has to be pretty hard, right?"

"Ugh, don't remind me about the homework. I'm just glad I did it...early..." Niramo trails off as something about that statement doesn't seem to ring right with her. She did the essays and the reading assignments, but wasn't there something else...? It takes a few moments as she recalls part of the summer homework that she intentionally held off on, and now it was returning with a revengence. "I...may have accidently forgotten to do the math drills."

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

It seems that Fumiko and Niramo have quite a bit in common for their Summer escapades... more than each other realizes. However, there was more than enough to talk about. "Seems like we both had quite a lot of fun, though it would've been more fun together. But... you know... things happen. Can't always hang out with everyone you want to... even if it is the person you most want to hang out with that gets left out."

Fumiko kind of hand-waves dismissively about the gymnastics. "Yeah, it is pretty hard I suppose," she admits. "Though I can worry more about that once school actually starts." She continues to slowly eat away at the hamburger. "What about dancing? That sounds fun yet difficult too. Getting good?"

The talk of math homework curdles Fumiko's blood. "Oh. Ooh... right. Not... not a good thing to leave until last. I got mine... done... already..." She trails off, but it seems like it is for a different reason than Niramo. She suddenly has a mischievous glint in her eye. "Yes. How did homework revision go? You made sure to double check your homework?" This innocent-sounding question, despite how smoothly Fumiko tried to ask, sounds like it has landmines hidden under the surface. Especially since she seems to be studying Niramo's face a bit closely.

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

An earnest nod is the answer to the missed chances the two had during the summer. "Maybe so, but we're making up for it now, after all. Maybe when there's a few days off at school we can go do something? There's this indoor theme part that uses virtual technology for adventures. Maybe we can go do it with just the two of us sometime."

Surely Fumiko would be better at it than Usagi. As nice as the Juuban high schooler is, she can be a disaster when it comes to coordination. Pancakes come to mind...

"Oh, right. It's been difficult, it tires you out a lot more than you would think if you do it for a while, and Ye-jin-san is a harsh but fair taskmistress, but it's still fun to do. A friend of mine several months back got me over my hesitations on dancing, so i'm hoping I can surprise her if we ever get into a dance club again." Now if only she could convince the physical education teachers at Juuban to just let her do dance routines instead of running, she could finally do some exercise that she enjoys. Running around on the track is so not for her.

Something about how Fumiko trails off seems slightly off to Niramo, and it causes the ravenette to look up from her hamburger. It seems innocent enough, but the way she spokes reminds the short girl of how several Ohtori students act when they want something done for them. But maybe this could work out... "Well, I usually don't review my homework, actually. But how about this? If you want to come over tonight or tomorrow and hang out while I finish my math assignment and you can double check the rest. But!" Niramo holds up a dramatic finger and looks her friend in the eye. "Only if I get to double check your homework first on the stuff I already did. That's my terms...oh, and I can make snacks for us too."

She might be overthinking it, but if it's anything like her instincts are telling her, maybe the thought of some free homecooked foods might give Fumiko something to work for.

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Fumiko grins at the offer to hang out more. "Virtual technology adventures it is then! Whenever we get a break. Let's just hope we aren't swamped with studying or something." Perhaps summer could happen in autumn after all.

The grin only gets bigger at Niramo's talk about dancing. "Sounds like you might have a talent you didn't know you had," Fumiko says... and there was no sarcasm or teasing in her voice whatsoever. "I'm happy for you."

Was there any reaction when Fumiko asked about homework revision? Some hesitation, but... not the kind Fumiko was looking for. No shock, more suspicion... and then she hears why. "O-oh... you want to go over our homework together?" /Ah. She thinks I'm planning something. May be best to go along with it./ "That... sounds like a plan. I'm... not a huge fan of math, but I am not bad at it. Perhaps I can help... as long as we don't end up going into homework trance... from the sheer mind-numbing effects of number overload."

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Fumiko's off-handed remark earns a long-pained sigh from the ravenette. "I hope not. It seems like the teachers love to give extra hard assignments after the summer break just to make sure our brains didn't turn to mush." Social Studies seems to be the worst offender of the entire school when it comes to that tactic, and Niramo can almost hear the homework building up from here.

The casual encouragement from Fumiko would seem normal to any outsider, but anything like that without any careful teasing or twisting of words can be rare. It makes it feel all that much more sincere for it, and Niramo blushes slightly with pleasure. "Really? I hope so. I...been searching for something I been good at for a while, so hearing that means a lot. Thanks, Fumiko-chan."

"I mean, I think I double-checked it all just to make sure, but I was pretty tired that day. I stayed up too late the night before playing a game, so I checked out of exhaustion-fueled paranoia. I kept checking previous stuff I looked over because I thought I made a mistake when I corrected something. I went to bed pretty early after that...and still forgot about my math." Even the mention of looking over all that homework again causes a large yawn to escape the small girl, and she takes a sip of her strawberry milkshake in an attempt to stave off the memory of fatigue.

"I'm not either, but we can just make sure that the teachers don't have any reasons to pick on us to make sure. Or you can just be over while I finish it up, if you want. It's not often I have someone over, and having someone to talk to might be what I need to triumph over all those numbers!"

Happy with the answers she gotten from Fumiko, Niramo seems to relax a little. She wasn't going to let Fumiko try to copy her answers, but it seems that's nothing she has to worry about.

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"I don't want my brain turned to mush," Fumiko admits, "but too much homework will ALSO do that. Overstudying is a real thing... but I suppose understudying is too. We... will just have to see what the teachers throw our way."

Fumiko's face lights up at Niramo's reaction to her encouragement. "You're welcome, Niramo -chan. Although... you are good at a lot. Don't think that all you are good for is hitting the dance floor, but I'm glad you are good at that too." After taking a sip of soda, she places a hand on Niramo's shoulder. "Nobody is perfect at everything. It isn't healthy to try to be." She glances away. "...believe me."

The homework thing confirms a theory - or at least adds some weight to it. "It seems like we all got the homework bug. That happens on the last few days of break." Especially if someone is using hypnotic homework on all the students. "But it is best to revise together when not a zombie from lack of sleep. I'm happy to take you up on your offer. I'll help you with whatever you need checked over... even math..."

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"Yeah, it's why I try to just look over that the homework covers, and it usually works out for the best. My social studies class likes to cover stuff that's not in the text book, though...why would I need to learn about the French Revolution? I doubt I would ever get a chance to go to Paris, after all." Niramo seems to be missing the two important factors that those two are not exactly relevant to one another...

Niramo shrugs her shoulder, not dismissing Fumiko but neither agreeing with her either. "It doesn't really feel like it, honestly. The only other thing I seem to be good at is cooking, and I been doing it for years. Honestly, I was worried that I wouldn't find anything else, so I been trying a lot of different things. I'm just glad something finally stuck!"

The sidelong look from Fumiko gives the ravenette a slight pause, but she doesn't try to press on the matter. Fumiko can be a little guarded about her life, but she's giving Niramo support. If the time comes, she'll return the favor for her friend.

Niramo rapidly shakes her head, hearing the dread on that subject. "I won't force you to face that beast that is math again for my sake, Fumiko-chan. Gah, and we came here to hide away from school, not talk about it again. After we finish eating lunch, your next game is on me. I'm the one who brought up what-shall-not-be-named, after all." This was a place of fun and recreation, not despair. That's in two days, and the present is now, after all.

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"The French Revolution is important," Fumiko jokes, "in case you need to spin around the Eiffel Tower real fast. I'm joking, it is in case you want to know why all the nobles were losing their heads over how revolting the peasants were." She gives a quiet giggle and a lopsided smile. "Hope that helps!"

Perhaps it is not the best time to push Niramo further about what she's good at, Fumiko thinks. After all, she already admitted that she is good at a couple things, that is an improvement. Perhaps she should just let it go.

"Ah... how did we get talking about homework? I'm sorry!" She mock-panics, then eats a little faster. "Yes, let's rock this arcade! And- " No... she couldn't let it go. "See... right there are some more things you are good at. You are good at video games... and you are good at being my friend."

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The humor might be a bit dark, but it causes Niramo to giggle at her friend's joke regardless. Fumiko does has an unique sense of humor, but it makes her stand out even more when she lets it show. "It does, and makes more sense than all the long rants the teacher goes on sometimes. Ever though about trying to be a teacher yourself, Fumiko-sensei?" She's not the only who can tease here.

She lets out a sigh as Fumiko seems to drop the subject, and she's glad for it. Niramo doesn't like to burden others with her own self doubts, and it just happened to sneak out. Besides, with all the talking going on, her burger was starting to get a little cold, and she couldn't let that happen!

"Nope, not your fault. It's the work of the dreaded overlord of the Boredom Empire, created to absorb all the joy out of life!" It may be said in jest, but there might actually be a group like that out there. "Let's make the most of what time we got left, after all. Have to stand tall in the face of hardship, right?"

Fumiko's shift in tone is enough to stop Niramo from reaching to finish off her shake, but what the short ravenette was expecting to be said wasn't that at all. Niramo's blush from earlier returns stronger than before, and a hand reaches to tug on the end of her ponytail subconciously. "I, uh...that's really nice of you to say, Fumiko-chan. Thank you. I'm really glad we're friends. I can't imagine how life would be if I haven't met you, after all."

Niramo straights up and gives her friend a fond smile, a little smaller than her usual smile yet brighter for it. "So really, thank you. I'm here for you if you ever need me, or even if you don't~"

<Pose Tracker> Fumiko Inoue [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"I've always felt that the best teachers I've ever had weren't the ones that knew the most, or gave the most or least homework - especially not the ones that gave the MOST homework - but the ones that actually made the subjects INTERESTING! We go to school to learn, not to memorize. Well, some of us are there because we have to be." She then laughs at the idea of becoming a teacher. "Haha... I don't know about that. Doesn't seem like my thing. I have no idea what I'd even teach."

Fumiko speeds up her eating by 200. Cold burgers and warm sodas are not ideal. "Oh no, not the Boredom Empire! We better suit up in our Armored Fun Patrol Mechas! Or... something." She shakes her head. Is she turning into some kind of nerdy goofball? Not sure her mom would approve, but it is probably better than what she was. "Let's have fun while we can. Still some Summer left."

Fumiko smiles softly and nods slightly down. "You... are welcome. I'm glad we are friends too. I'm... not good at making friends. I don't even know how. So I have no idea how I ended up having an amazing best friend."

"And that's my line! You aren't going to get away from my friendship! Bwahahaha!" Fumiko gestures evilly as she laughs maniacally. Oh no, is she secretly the Demon Queen of Friendship!?

<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Niramo raises up her cup in a toast towards Fumiko. "I agree! We may have to memorize all sorts of facts, but it just makes it easy to forget it after we no longer need to answer it on an exam." Tipping the cup back, she finishes up the last of her shake. It might have been impressive if there wasn't a lot of it left. "And...maybe you could teach others on how to be more open to others? But i'm not sure how homework would be assigned on that..."

The haphazard joke she made up on the spot gains an unexpected idea, and Niramo taps her chin in thought. "Oooh, that sounds sort of like technology fighting against magic. It could make a great short novel if done right, Fumiko-chan. And the arcade waits for us, after all!" But first, the last of her lunch needs to be eaten. No part of her allowence will go to waste on her watch!

Niramo continues to smile at Fumiko and shakes her head. "That's because you focus on quality, not quantity. A friend who's there to cheer you up is much better than fifty who like a picture of a cat you share. But i'm not that amazing..."

Niramo looks up with faux-horror as the Demon Queen of Friendship makes herself known. "No, please no! I guess I have no choice but endure your friendship until the end of time, then." Fumiko can do the evil laughter surprisingly well...but then again, she did say she almost was in a play. "And maybe you just have a natural acting talent that needs to come out too."