2022-09-11 - Two Totally Normal American Girls Meet in Japan

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Title: Two Totally Normal American Girls Meet in Japan

Kyouka and Lera have a chance meeting at Juuban High.


Kyouka Okazaki, Lera Camry


Juuban Public School

OOC - IC Date:

September 11, 2022 - Monday, Jan 11, 2016

  • +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+* Juuban Public School +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+
 A short, friendly red brick wall with a cast iron gate surrounds this tidy    
 public school. There's little in the way of architectural whimsy to the       
 rectangular white buildings within. The stairwells, which create tower-like   
 square bulges, and the plate windows, which run almost unbroken along each    
 the length of each floor, are the only real distinguishing features to the    
 simple design.                                                                
 A well-loved old school built in the sixties, Juuban has undergone several    
 renovations over the decades, and is probably a little overdue for another.   
 The vinyl flooring has been mopped by generations of students, and no longer  
 squeaks readily. The cork bulletin boards that publically display class       
 assignments and grades are pockmarked as if by tiny machine guns. The         
 concrete walls have been repainted the same shade of white so many times      
 that their blocks have taken on a thick, soft appearance, like wedding cake.  
 Some of the older ceiling panels have taken on the amiable sag of middle      
 There is never a sense of decrepitude, however. Juuban Public is always       
 neat, functional, and lively. Any actual damage or dirt is attended to with   
 an anthill-like swarm of dutiful students. This is their school, and it is    
 as comfortable as an old shoe.                                                
  • +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+* Players +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*
<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Ahhh, track. The perfect excuse to put everything else out of her head--like a shopping trip that brought up just, a whole bunch of feelings she wasn't sure what to do with just yet--and to focus simply on the pure exhilaration of physical exertion.

In fact, she's so into it she's hung around for a bit after the other club members have finished, working on her sprints for a bit before taking a nice, long, cooldown lap and doing some stretches. She loves practicing with the rest of the team, but it's nice to take a bit of time to herself every now and again. She loves meeting new people, but being in class all day, constantly watching what she says, making sure all of her mannerisms are correct and that she's doing everything properly... is frankly kind of exhausting.

All the same, she's used to not seeing anybody in this particular area when she comes back in from the field, and when she spots the other student, one who's familiar to her, her interest is piqued.

She's a bit taller than average, her hair dyed black with purple streaks, and dressed in her tracksuit. her ever present device is in his standby form, a purple gem on a black leather cuff, hidden, for the moment, under her tracksuit sleeve. She's got a towel hanging over her shoulders as she wanders over to the other girl.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera Camry is visiting Juuban because she has a number of friends here. She visited one of them -- giving over a manga she loaned -- and then she started on her way out. This led her past the field. She stands out, even when she is the only other person here. An American (ahem), standing taller than most other students, with long orange hair and amber-brown eyes.

She spots Kyouka and blinks, before she lifts a hand. She has a pendant, herself; two little gemstones, one green and one gold, are embedded in it.

She waves at her, and then flashes a smile.

"Hello!" she says, as she approaches. She doesn't quite recognize her -- but she certainly doesn't know everyone at Juuban, much less her own school.

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka... is no stranger to standing out in a place. It's just usually everywhere else she's been--here, she actually looks like most of her contemporaries, as a Japanese-American girl. Though to see her interacting with more people... she would read as just a little bit off, socially.

Still, she returns the wave with a smile and a wave of her own, "Hi there! Don't usually see a lot of people out this way after school's done, so I thought I'd wander over and say hi."

She sees that amulet, but seemingly doesn't recognize it for what it is. Instead, she dabs at her forehead and neck a little bit. "Sorry, don't mind me, I was just getting a little extra practice in."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Hi! Yeah, I was here to talk to some friends and uh... I guess I kinda took the long way back," Lera says, with a sheepish laugh. She extends a hand out towards Kyouka, with a smile on her face.

"I'm Lera Camry!" she says. "I'm a student at Infinity Institute." There is a moment's pause, before her smile turns sheepish. "An exchange student, too."

She doesn't specify America. She doesn't lie about it, the way she used to... but most people wouldn't understand what being from a place called Midchilda means.

So she still tends to fall back to America as an excuse.

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka understands handshakes. It feels like she hasn't had as many since she moved here. So she eagerly accepts, with a nice, firm grip and a grin. "Oh, don't worry about it. I'm still getting used to navigating a school myself, sometimes."

"Kyouka Okazaki," she replies after Lera introduces herself. But she perks up when Lera mentions being an exchange student. "Oh? Where are you from? I'm actually new here myself. My family came to Japan a couple months ago. Before that I was kind of... all over the place." She indicates 'all over the place' with a vague gesture of her hand after she's done shaking. "Dad's in the military, so we kind of move a lot," she offers as an explanation.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Oh, wow! You moved here from abroad?" Lera asks, with briefly widened eyes. She nods her head, though, and beams for a moment. "I'm from America! Uh, from San Francisco."

Please don't be from America, please don't be from America, please don't be...

This is Lera's inward plea. She does not know if it will be answered; she does not know enough to pretend to be American around Americans. She straightens her back out, though, and she nods cheerfully. "That sounds kind of intense," she admits. "How are you getting on, living here? Do you like it?"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka nods when Lera asks about moving from abroad. "Yep! I'm, uh, hoping to get to stay here for a while, though..." 'For once', is the part she doesn't say at the end of that sentence.

When Lera indicates she's from America though... her eyes light up. And she starts gushing in English. "((Really?! I'm American too! Well, Japanese-American, my dad's from the U.S., and my mom is from here but she emmigrated--Nevermind, but how is it? How's San Francisco? I've always wnated to go, but I've only managed a couple of trips to visit my grandparents, I've barely gotten to spend any time there, and there's just so much to see...))"

She switches back to Japanese just as easily. "Oh, it is, it's... kind of a lot, but... it's still kind of cool having gotten to see as many places as I have, and there's amazing food everywhere. But I'm getting used to living here. It's been... not quite how I thought it'd be, but still really interesting learning more about what I guess is kind of my other home country."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera manages to not grimace.

She swaps to English, at least -- and her English is very good. The only thing strange is her accent is a little off; it's subtle, but it doesn't quite sound American... or British, Australian, New Zealander, Canadian, or anything else. It's subtle, though.

"San Francisco is great!" she says, instantly. "Ahaha, ha... y-your grandparents live there, huh? It's--um--it's nice. The fog. And the Golden Gate bridge! And the... um... wharfs!"

A beat, and she clings to the subject change like a woman adrift at sea. "Your other home country? It is really nice here, though... it takes some getting used to. I've been here for about three years, now--aah, and it's... y'know, it's still a big adjustment, but I've made a lot of friends. And the food is great!"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka is actually used to hearing English spoken with a lot of different accents. Plus penty of other languages. Still...

She switches back to English to continue up that thread of conversation. "((Oh, my grandparents aren't actually from San Francisco--They're from back East, in New York--that's where my parents met. New York is amazing, too, but there's just not enough time to see it all in one trip, you know? Did you live in San Francisco all your life, or did you live somewhere else at some point? What made you want to do a foreign exchange program in Japan?))"

Annnnd back to Japanese. "Yeah, my Mom made sure I learned Japanese growing up, she wanted to make sure I had some connection to my heritage here, you know? Still, actually living here's been... different from what she always told me about, you know? I guess things have changed from when she lived here, in some ways..." She smiles, "Yeah, I've been slowly making friends too, which is kind of nice. I've got friends all over but... well, we always eventually move, you know?" She looks a bit saddened for a moment. "I write letters, but it's just not the same. Is there anybody you're missing back in the states? Three years is a long time to live in a place."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"((Aah, well... I lived in a rural town before, up by the mountains,))" Lera says. That isn't a lie, either, though the specific town and the specific mountains aren't ones in America. "((It was super pretty. And it got pretty cold, too!))"

She knows of New York. She hasn't been there, but it was one of the places she read about.

She switches back to Japanese, then, and she nods her head. "That's good of her... yeah, I have to imagine Japan's changed a lot. I--ah--yeah, I miss a lot of people. My friends from school, Mom, some of the people around town..."

She tilts her head. "Letters aren't really the same. I can call sometimes, but... the time difference is pretty huge."

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka perks up when Lera mentions living in a mountain town. "((Oh! What town did you live in? I wonder if I've heard of it? I've... picked up a lot of geography over the years, kinda comes in handy when you're wandering the world. ... Sorry I keep pestering you with questions, it's just... so rare I get to meet someone my own age from the states, you know?))"

She brightens up as she gets an idea. "Oh! Let me go get my phone, maybe I can look it up if I don't know it. Here, my stuff's this way." What's that, was Lera headed on her way out? Kyouka seems to have forgotten that fact.

She does pause when you mention the people you've left behind. "Aww, damn. Yeah, international calling is... a pain. And your mom... That's rough," she says, with genuine sympathy in her voice. "My mom and I don't always get along, but I'd... probably miss her if she wasn't around. Have you... been able to take any trips home to see her, at least?"

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"((It's... um, called Rigate,))" Lera says. She probably doesn't know of Midchildan geography; she can't really put it together, Lera hopes. She may be wrong. "((It's in Colorado.))"

Colorado has mountains, she heard.

She shakes her head, with a smile -- even as her eyes widen. "It's--um--pretty remote so I'm not sure if you'll find much," she says. She looks at the ground for a moment, then back up at Kyouka. She blinks -- but she smiles, after a moment. "Yeah. I used to have some conflict with her, but... we worked it out. And I miss her, but it's okay, y'know?"

She grins. "I'll get to visit home, sooner or later. I haven't had a chance yet, but that's because she travels a lot. And she's come to visit a couple times, too! Your parents are here, though?"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka nods a bit, "((Rigata, huh?))" She mutters to herself as she searches her memory. "((Rigata... Rigata... Hm. Drawing a blank. That's an unusual name, though. You said it was in Colorado?))" She resumes walking to the locker room. "((Lemme grab my phone and I'll look it up.))"

She smiles as you say you worked it out. "That's good. My mom and I are... we're still working things out, but it's better." She smiles, though there's a tint of sadness to it as she says, "Well, it's nice to have a place to go back to, even if you're away from it for a long time." She looks contemplative for a moment after she says that. "Oh! But it's nice that she's been able to visit you. What does she travel for?" An affirmative nod, "Yep! Though... my dad's on base, so I don't get to see him a lot. My mom and I are actually living here in Shitamachi." She sighs a little, "I wish I got to see him more, but... kind of hard to invite friends over to hang out in base housing, so... I'm hoping my Dad and I get to do a camping trip on my next vacation."

She perks up, "Oh! What do you like to do for fun?"

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"((Yeah. Um, it's really remote, so... I'm not sure if it's got a lot of web presence,))" Lera admits with a sheepish shrug. She follows after Kyouka -- yeah, she was going somewhere else, but... new friend. It doesn't hurt to delay her plans!

She also didn't have many plans.

"That's good," Lera says, after a second. She scratches at her cheek for a second. "Your dad's in the military, then? I know there's a base nearby..." She hasn't ever been there, though. She hesitates for a second, though.

"Mom's an engineer," she says. "The specific stuff is kinda beyond me, y'know? I'm more of a sports type--uh, like, I've done basketball, soccer, uh... mountain climbing? I love climbing! Not so much the brainy stuff my mom does."

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka nods as Lera explains that it's remote but doesn't seem to concerned. "((Well, if it's too remote for the web I'll just have to ask you more about it! Sorry, I love learning about new places, and especially any chance I can get to learn about the States.))"

She nods, "Yep, he is, and yeah, that's the one."

"Oh! I can totally relate to that. My mom is, believe it or not, a teacher. She basically homeschooled me all my life until we moved here. But I've always been the outdoors type myself. I've tried everything I could, including soccer, and mountain climbing, and--oh, if you know any good climbing or hiking or camping spots, let me know! We should go check them out sometime!"

She hangs up her towel, and since they're indoors now takes off her track suit's jacket--revealing a t-shirt and her device's standby mode on her right wrist: a small, five-sided purple gem on top of a leather bracelet. She doesn't seem concerned about it as she hangs her jacket up and fishes her phone out. "((Rigata... is that spelled how it sounds? R i g a t a?))"

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera laughs again. "((W-Well.. I don't mind answering questions!))"

She blinks -- her eyes widen for a moment. "Oh, does your mom teach here? Or at another school?" she asks. She puts a hand on the back of her neck, and she nods. "Yep, yep, I like those! We should do those sometime, sure! I know some good camping and hiking spots. Aaah, and--and there's school trips, sometimes. You get amazing hiking then!"

Hokkaido and Okinawa are something else, really. She beams, and then she catches the bracelet. It doesn't register -- though, it makes her think for a moment. Pretty...

"((R-i-g-a-t-e,))" She says. Then, in Japanese, and a little lamely: "M-Maybe it was... Italian, originally...?"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

She gives a very firm shake of her head. "Oh! No, she does not teach here. I... well, that's part of why I choose Juuban, because she wanted me to go to Ohtori so bad--that's where she teaches, by the way. I checked it out and it just... wasn't my scene. Infinity was better, but... Juuban just... felt like the kind of place I'd always wanted to go to school in, you know?" She looks down at her phone to avoid looking at Lera. "It still feels weird to be going to an actual school like this."

Then she perks up, grinning widely, "Awesome! I'm looking forward to checking them out, then. Oh! School trips, right! I'm really looking forward to some of those, too!"

((Oh! Sorry, I guess I misheard you before. ... t... e. Where's your accent from, by the way? I can't quite place it.))" She pauses for a moment. "((Sorry, is that rude of me to ask? I like getting to know people and where they're from. Okay, give me a sec, my phone's kinda slow... it's a couple years old, but I hate to throw it away when it still mostly works....))" She frowns a bit, panning around on the map. "((Huh, yeah, I'm not coming up with anything... hmmm... You said it was near some mountains, right? What mountain range is it near, maybe I can find it that way?))

The mention of it being Italian gets a frown. "I dunno, seems like the wrong area for an Italian town name... but I guess that's possible..."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"That makes sense. Ohtori is really... uhm... fancy, y'know?" Lera says, scratching her cheek idly as she walks along. She glances sideways at Kyouka -- and nods, even though this wasn't a school she imagined. She gets it; this school looks a lot like the ones shown in shows, manga, and the like.

"I got into one of Infinity's programs," Lera says. "So I ended up there. I like it, though, y'know?"

Then, she blinks. Accent, accent--oh, crap. "((Ah, my dad... um, he's not with us anymore, but he wasn't from the same country. Germany, actually.))" She heard Germany was similar to the modern Belkans, at least. "((So maybe that's why? It's not rude, right. And--um--the Rockies?))"

That's the only mountain rage there she knows. Lera's eyebrow twitches, before she laughs sheepishly. "W-Well... I could be wrong!"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka snorts a little. "Yeah, 'fancy' is one word for it," she says under her breath.

But yes. This is, as far as she can tell, a perfectly normal school, and 'perfectly normal' is exactly what she wanted.

"I liked Infinity when I checked it out! Like, I completely respect hard work and passion, you know? I just... didn't want to be cooped up in a tower all day." She sounds much more apologetic in this comment than in her one about Ohtori. "Sorry, no offense meant. But that's cool, what program was it? Was it something more specific than just a student exchange program?"

She blinks a little. There is one exchange program she heard about, and... didn't Endo say something about...

... Naaaah, must've misheard, or he must've mispoke.

But that does remind her--

"((Oh! I'm so sorry to hear that,))" when Lera mentions her father's passing. She gives Lera a soft pat of consolation on the shoulder. It's brief, but still well-meaning. She looks thoughtful for a moment. "Ummm... Sprechen sie Deutsch?" Her accent in Japanese? Present, but mostly covered by her fluency. Her accent in German? Much worse.

"((Well, that's a big range... Hmm...))" she's panning and scrolling around on the map now, trying to find your town.

"Oh, I almost forgot! Do... you know Setsuna Higashi? She... well, I don't want to assume, but she mentioned someone from Infinity with the same name, and I'm guessing there's not too many Lera Camrys running around, so..."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera cracks a smile at the snort. She might be a little too polite, there.

Then, she nods, with a smile and a shrug. "No, no, I get what you mean! It's not for everyone... and sometimes it's kinda over the top, when I just want to relax..."

There's a little sigh there. Then, she shakes her head quickly. "Uh--it's sort of a..." She doesn't know about magic. "Advanced math program? I'm pretty good at math."

Not so good at science and applying it.

"((It's okay,))" she says. "((It was a long time ago.))" Then she blinks -- and shakes her head. She doesn't know German. She pauses for a moment, then, and her expression lights up.

"Yeah! I know Setsuna!" she says. "Oh, did you meet her?"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

She chuckles and nods, "Yeah, I can see how it might be hard to relax there... and heaven help them if the elevator ever breaks, right?"

"Oh! Cool. Math is... I mean, it's hard to have a bad subject when your teacher is your mom and she can definitely tell if you're doing your homework or not... but it's not my favorite. But that's cool if you got in for that."

She nods solemnly when you explain it happened a long time ago, and then just shrugs a little when you don't react to the question. "((Oh, I guess not. Sorry, I've picked up a bunch of bits and pieces here and there. It's always handy to know how to ask where the bathroom is when you're traveling internationally. Hmmm... Still not finding it...))"

She grins and nods, "Yeah! She's on the track team with me! She actually showed me this ramen place near by that was really good." And there was also some other things discussed, but, she won't get into that. "I like her. I kind of consider her one of my first real friends that I made here."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"I guess I kinda just get into a zone. It's hard to explain," Lera says, with a smile.

She shakes her head once. "((It's...pretty remote,))" she says, a little weakly. She looks embarrassed, and then she tilts her head to the side for a second. She brightens as soon as the subject is Setsuna Higashi.

"She's great. We're, um, we're pretty close, y'know?" This is an understatement and then some. "I'm glad you made friends with her. She's a really nice person. If she's showing you around, you won't be steered wrong!"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

She chuckles a bit, "Hey, if it works for you, I've got no objections."

She does pause when she sees your embarrassment, lowering her phone for a moment. "((Hey, is... this making you uncomfortable? I'm sorry, I really didn't mean to pry or anything. I can drop it.))" She sounds genuinely concerned that she may have embarassed you. And then she's stowing the phone away. "((I'll drop it, I really don't want to make you uncomfortable.))"

She chuckles a little bit, "Well, she said you were her girlfriend, so I hope you're closed..." She nods, "Yeah, she..." Well there's just no way to say 'she helped me out when I was freaking out about magic' without tipping her hand. "... well, I really needed someone to talk to, and she happened to find me at just the right time." She nods, "Oh, I believe that. And you know... she's the only person I've ever seen with a bigger appetite than me." She sounds... rather amused by that fact, actually.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"((Oh, no, no--ah, just... you know, not used to talking about home!))" Lera says with a laugh -- and a shake of her head. She can't quite explain the truth after all. But, it would be a shame to stop talking to her. "((Don't worry about it!))"

Then she flushes -- but she smiles. "Yeah, we are. It's, um, it's pretty great. I'm glad she was there to help. She's..." She trails off for a second. "...She's really good at being there, when someone needs her. And, um, yeah. She can eat a lot. It's kind of incredible, y'know?"

There is a buzzing from her phone. She pulls it out, looking over the text message she got. "Oh--shoot, I'm gonna have to head out soon to meet up with someone," she says. "Hey, we should hang out again sometime, y'know? Maybe try hiking!"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Kyouka nods when you say not to worry about it. "((Well, I'll drop it for now. Sorry, li;ke I said, I just get kinda excited when I meet another American my own age, that's all.))"

She grins a bit as she sees that blush, but doesn't comment on it. She does smile when Lera describes how Setsuna can be there for people. "Yeah... after we talked I felt a lot better. Just, uh... you know, the whole, being in a new place, trying to adjust, type of thing." It's not... strictly a lie, there.

She waits as you check your text, and nods, "Oh! Of course! Sorry, I guess I kept you longer than you probably meant, huh?" She brightens up when you mention hanging out though. "Yeah! I've been looking for new camping and hiking spots in the area!"

She pulls out her phone again. "Hopefully you know some dog-friendly trails, so I can bring Wolfy--that's my Siberian Husky. Guy loves the outdoors. Here's my number..." She rattles it off, and then starts a new contact for you.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"((No worries!))" Lera says, with a smile.

"Yeah," she agrees, a moment later. "I know. Being in a new place... and all the stuff going on, it can get really overwhelming, y'know?" Even if she doesn't know the specifics -- and is omitting some of hers. She smiles, then she straightens her back out.

She enters Kyouka's phone number into her phone, as she rattles it off. She saves the contact -- then fires off a text that says, simply, 'Hi!'

She looks up, and nods happily. "Yeah, I can think of some, y'know? I can't wait to meet Wolfy! That sounds great! And don't worry about it, it was great to talk!"

<Pose Tracker> Kyouka Okazaki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

"Tell me about it... My Mom kinda prepped me somewhat but... just some things nobody can prepare you for, right?" Like freakin' magic. Magic was definitely not in the lessons her mother gave her.

Well, not any magic that didn't come from folklore and stories, anyway.

She smiles as she gets the text and saves it, and then replies, back, 'Hi!'.

She grins and nods, "Oh yeah, you'll love him. Wolfy loves everybody, actually. It'll be great." She nods in agreement, "It was nice talking to you, too! I'm glad I spotted you. Have fun with whatever it is you're off to do!"

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Mm-hm. Coming to another country, it's... really hard to be ready for everything, y'know?" Lera says. Like magic -- though she always knew about it -- but also all of the strange and wonderful (and sometimes dangerous) things Earth had on offer. She looks down at her phone, smiles at the return text, and then she slides it back tino her pocket.

"I can't wait to meet him," she says, with a smile. "Me, too. I'll talk to you next time!"

She waves at Kyouka once, before she's off -- back towards the entrance to the school.