Season 2, Episode 2
It was a bright, beautiful morning.
A calming breeze played around with that little bit of short summer sleeve, putting a spring into his step even though he was simply heading towards that same old school.
And by same ‘old’ school, Shun was referring to his high school – Shikishima Senior High.
A normal grey slab of concrete with some courts on the left and grounds in the front.
Ah, those were the days when Shikishima High was still just a normal high school.
That is, until the perennial ‘tyrant’ came along.
Now, behind the normal school building stood the most magnificent structure that Shun ever had the misfortune to see.
It was as if someone had tried to marry the quaint, picturesque scenes of Versailles into modern Tokyo – thus ending up with the monstrosity that resembled neither the gilded Taj Mahal, nor the fabled Palace of Versailles. Instead, it became its own unique landmark, marking itself down on maps as the home of the “Celebrity Course”.
That’s right, Shikishima High now had a course that catered especially for the extremely gifted and advanced – the “Celebrity Course”.
And the so-called pioneer of this course? Yes, none other than the tyrant – Reizeiin Nadeshiko.
Hailing from the rich and powerful Reizeiin Business Group, Nadeshiko was practically the ruler of the entire school.
With that seemingly endless mountain of wealth, coupled with a keen intellect, not even the teachers could stand up against her.
As such, the school was hers to run as she saw fit.
Take today, for example. With nothing better to do, Nadeshiko had set up a pavillion at the front gates, and from upon her sumptuous throne, gazed down at the other common students, inspecting their way of dress. A big signboard in front of the gates announced this event, aptly titled “Inspection and Necessary Changes in Uniform, courtesy of your kind Prefect”.
That imperious gaze of hers bore down on every single student that walked through the gate as her ribbons subtly glinted from her twin tails. Legs crossed at the ankles, she looked the picture of beauty and grace, her special celebrity uniform hugging her figure in all the right places.
Beauty, brains, and an honorary member of the Tensei branch of martial arts, all rolled into one.
Such was the queen, Reizeiin Nadeshiko.
Also honoured by the populace with the nickname, Nadeshiko the Tyrant.
“Ohohoho! Do not fret, o’ commoners. Whilst I might be gracing you with my holy presence, you need not worry! Simply display a magnificent show of modesty and hard work, and I shall for sure recognize you.”
A benevolent smile.
Clearly, she expected everyone to live up to her expectations.
As she stepped up from her throne, two girls from beside her rushed up with a basketful of flower petals, while another trailed behind with a silk parasol.
Really, even a goddess wouldn’t have received such treatment.
Quaking, the students filed into the front gate. Her gaze seemed to gleam from atop her throne, not missing a single beat, nor a forgotten shoelace on the path.
Those lucky enough to have made it through the inspection looked simultaneously relieved and constipated as they rushed towards the safety of the main entrance.
Shun, being just one of the crowd, clearly wanted nothing to do with Nadeshiko either.
Heaving himself forward, he took his best shot at evading the eagle’s predatory stare – mix and lose himself within the throng of students heading towards the safety net.
Unfortunately though, luck was just not on his side that morning.
The other students were evading him like the plague.
And for good reason.
“You, over there! Turn around, please.”
Nadeshiko had just called out to him.
Rising from her cushions, flower petals danced overhead as Nadeshiko made her way down the stairs of the pavilion towards Shun.
Behind her, a few more girls swiftly cleaned up after her.
Shun barely resisted the urge to snicker and butt in with a pun about goddesses and divas, which definitely would have been a bad idea.
“And who might you be? Your aura is filthy, Cambodia.”
Caught in juxtapose, Shun nodded, then corrected her.
“Ah, that’s right! Well, whatever.”
Covering her mouth, Nadeshiko let out a small sound of laughter.
Apparently, that was a signal.
Her followers started to fan her.
Watching warily, Shun let out a sigh of exasperation.
Can she just let me off already?!
As it was, today wasn’t even the first time this happened. Somehow, Nadeshiko loved to parade herself in front of him and stick her nose into his business.
He really was getting sick of it.
“As you can see, today is where we hold sport check of everyone’s uniform in order to maintain the discipline of the school. And of course, as the supreme ruler of this school, it is my duty to ensure that this inspection is successful.
“Yeah, if you’re so great, then how about you take a good long look at yourself! What about what you’re wearing, huh?”
By then, spectators had already gathered, nosing their way into the scene that was about to unfold.
Whispers of ‘how could he say that to her’ and ‘how dare he’ spread like wild fire amongst the crowd.
On his part, Shun didn’t even bat an eye.
He was used to Nadeshiko and her ways.
“Well, that’s because I’m beautiful!”
The truth did not need any garnish.
“Well, yes, the discipline that I speak of here is slightly abridged compared to the written version of the rule, but I assure you, it holds equal, if not more, importance. Yes, I’ve dyed my hair, and yes, my piercing is showing, but as long as it suits me, it is negligible and hence can be overlooked. However, if something looks bad on someone, then that is definitely not allowed in my school. Capiche?”
Dress it up as she might, it all came down to Nadeshiko’s personal feelings.
Now, that’s so fair, isn’t it?
“Coming back to thee, I shall now assess your clothing.”
Nadeshiko leant forward, the scent of expensive perfume pervading Shun’s senses.
Too – too close!
Shun squirmed in discomfort.
Nadeshiko, on the other hand, clearly had no such qualms as her hard eyes gave Shun the once, no, twice over, from the soles of his shoes, to that strand of hair that stood just slightly out of place at the crown of his head.
Five short beats later, she retreated.
That marked the start of a flowing stream of criticism.
“Your shoes need washing. Wear your belt at the next belt hole, it’s too tight and your pants are crooked as a result. Unbutton one more button at the bottom of your shirt. Wipe off that hint of eye discharge on your right eye. Your fringe should go soon too.”
Seriously, was there nothing about him that was right?
“I’ll let you off today with just a warming, so please do come in tomorrow with all those flaws corrected.”
While curious, the bystanders knew instinctively that it was now time to leave. Soon they’d be in the safety of the common school hallways, far beyond Nadeshiko’s grasp.
Oh, what wouldn’t he give to join them.
“Nadeshiko, why are you always picking on me? Why am I the only one that you have to observe up close, while for the other students you barely move an inch off of your throne?”
“Please do not get the wrong idea.”
Her reply came, cool and snappy.
“The only reason I would descend from my seat is because you have such a thin presence. I am barely able to remember your name and as such need to watch you carefully in order to make sure that you do not escape from my beauty inspection. Such is my duty as the ruler of this school.”
Shun could have sworn that her nose started to grow every time she talked about that.
“Well, you sure let a lot of other students slip past you today, anyways.”
“Please do not lump me in with the rest of you. None of you will be able to understand the detailed width of my field of vision. I can assure you, I’ve checked every single one of them properly before letting them pass.”
Beside her, the servants were obediently doing all the fanning.
Heaving a long sigh, Shun decided to admit defeat.
It really was pointless saying anything to her.
“That’s amazing! But, I have to run, so – “
Slender fingers caught at his sleeve.
Beads of light seemed to dance before him as Nadeshiko moved her unfettered hand to pat her hair.
“Do you notice anything different about me today?”
“Observing others is the first step towards improving one’s own appearance. Please, do look carefully now.”
Sparing a cursory glance at Nadeshiko, who had all but thrust out her modest chest, Shun decided to go with the most neutral answer.
“Everything’s the same as always, isn’t it?”
The rage that flooded out of Nadeshiko was immediate and imminent.
“Idiot! I’ve changed the ribbons in my hair. This is the first time I’ve ever wore this pair!”
Fingers shaking as they pointed at the aforementioned accessory, Nadeshiko’s veneer of calm had started to crack.
Fortunately though, before Shun could retort with something extremely rude, another something, or rather, someone, caught Nadeshiko’s eye.
“Tanaka Kazuya, Year 2, Class A, please stop.”
She careened towards the boy, leaving the sight of petals and the sound of sweeping in her wake.
She really must have a thing against him, mustn’t she? What a joke, her not being able to remember his name when she could actually fit the entire profile of every student in the entire school into that oversized brain of hers.
Tanaka Kazuya turned around, pissed.
In every year there was at least one person who seemed to get things all wrong. Tanaka Kazuya’s shirt was a work of art that morning. A tiger, larger than life, roared out from the gold and silver needlework at the back of his shirt. It practically screamed disobedience, and Tanaka Kazuya was undoubtedly using this inspection as a chance to show it off.
“Are you an idiot?”
Nadeshiko threw down the figurative mallet.
“I am deducting five marks off because of that shirt. Another one point each will also be deducted for your unsightly face and actions respectively. Coupled with your prior mistake, you have already lost nine marks. One more and you will be a candidate for ‘judgement.’ Now pick up that rag and throw it away, along with your idiosyncrasy, if you please.”
“What the – ?! You bitch! What did you just say?!”
Tanaka Kazuya’s face had coloured and turned into a strange combination of a reddish black hue. His rage manifested itself in violent shaking.
“Can you not speak more than ten words? That makes you even stupider than a parrot.”
“You bitch – !!”
Before he could finish his sentence though, a fist connected with his face.
“That just cost you one hundred points. You have now obtained a total demerit of one hundred and nine points. Hence, I will now serve out the ‘judgement’.”
With practiced grace, punch after punch landed with precision on Tanaka Kazuya’s prone form.
Nadeshiko was already moving much too fast for the human eye to follow.
And then, she was behind him.
Shun could have sworn that he saw white feathers floating as she lifted and straightened her right leg, her skirt fluttering in the breeze, allowing him just that short moment of reprieve into the private world of Nadeshiko’s underwear and crotch.
Hmm, now that’s an interesting choice…
“Tensei School Secret Art: Dance of the Cygnus!”
The slim, clothed foot swung backwards, gathering force before finally landing down upon its victim with a bone crushing impact.
The dance of the swans had come to an end.
Slowly, Nadeshiko replaced her foot on the ground, heels first, spinning gracefully with retarding speed, while waiting for the effects of inertia to die down.
Tanaka Kazuya, on the other hand, wasn’t so fortunate.
The impact of the kick had sent him around the universe, and finally, when the earth had stopped turning upon its head, he landed on the ground.
Ouch. Must have been his skull.
Turning her back on her opponent, Nadeshiko made to leave. Such was how a ruler was meant to be.
With that problem solved, she turned around instead to face Shun.
It was a very pregnant pause.
The atmosphere felt charged.
Shun wondered for a second if he could get off scot free after seeing, her, ahem, panties.
Maybe she doesn’t know..?
Chancing a glance at Nadeshiko, that thought immediately flew out of the window.
Impossible. She knows everything.
Surprisingly though, Nadeshiko made no sound of reproof.
As she turned around, Shun saw something very strange.
Nadeshiko was smiling.
Was that just a trick of the light, or were her cheeks stained with just a hint of pink?
It was almost as if she was challenging him.
‘So you saw it, hmm?’