Tuesday, April 10th, 2015
Sumire looked around at her surroundings again and sighed. It seems like she managed to lose that crowd. Ever since the performance at the school festival, she did not get a single moment of peace. Her phone kept continually ringing. On the net, she was everywhere. Whenever she went outside, she would end up surrounded. She felt like a huge star when she was still nobody.
So Hino suggested that she wore a disguise from now on. Her gaze fell towards her reflection on the shop mirror nearby and sighed. A hat, large glasses and what is with these clothes? Hino insisted that if she dresses the opposite to her usual style, then nobody would recognize her.
But it seems like that isn't working. Sumire entered one of the stores and picked some simple clothes off the shelves and got changed in the dressing room. She paused, however, when she a dark-colored bruise form on her arm.
It's happening again, the injury from that time. When she woke up in the hospital that day, she noticed this injury, but it did not look this large. Over time she noticed how large it became. It concerned her, but she did not want to fuss over it. Now that she got a better look, perhaps it would be better if she got somebody to look.
Sumire quickly got dressed, paid for the clothes, and headed out. She only walked for a few minutes before she noticed somebody. On the pathway that would lead to the outskirts of town, there was Shin. He glanced over at her and nodded.
"Those clothes are better for moving about, unlike the dress from earlier."
She raised her eyebrows at this comment of his. Was he watching her since then?
"You came here to investigate the base Mamoru was investigating before, right?"
Sumire nodded. "I thought I would find something."
"Does Yuhi know your ditching class for this?"
At that comment, Sumire flinched.
Shin sighed. "I don't even know if he is attending class this morning. So you have time to stall until he comes back."
"I see." Sumire trailed off. She felt a bit bad; she doesn't even know what his schedule is like recently. But after she got a lead, Sumire decided she would follow up on it. When she paid a visit to Sano's company the other day, she overheard something from the people there.
"Shin, your coming with me?"
"Somebody has to watch you."
"What about school?"
"I have no classes to teach this morning, and I had work," Shin explained.
Work? Ah, that's right Shin is an idol too. Since she normally saw him at school, sometimes she forgets about his real profession.
"Shin, why do you know where the base is?"
"That's because he asked me for help several times. Even though I have nothing to do with the underworld anymore, he was very persistent. He wanted my insight and skills regarding the things he found in the base."
"The things he found?"
"A large number of organs and stress care medication."
"There were other things too. But they mixed the substances up, so he sent it to me to investigate. I worked on it during my free time, but I don't know."
Sumire blinked. "Then maybe it isn't a mixed substance, but something new?"
No matter what the substance is. There will always be a reaction if it's something that already exists. If Shin couldn't find out what that something is, then it must be something new. So the person in charge of that base must be a scientist.
"Why are you so interested in this case? Do you think these people have something to do with his death?"
Sumire sighed. "You don't think so? I mean, they were the last person he was investigating."
"No, I do. They are the obvious culprits. But the police overlooked it. Mamoru met with these people the day before the accident."
Shin continued. "He wasn't there for your final practice, right?"
"That's true. So he went to Tokyo?"
"That's right. He made a quick trip. I was with him at the time. He said he wanted extra hands just in case it was a trap. But the talk went smoothly. They even said they would surrender now that their secret is out."
"Secret?" She repeated.
A dim gaze appeared on Shin's face. "I think there was something he found out but couldn't tell me."
"It sounds like you two were good friends. I had no idea."
Shin sighed. "That's your reaction?"
"Well, when it comes to matters of the underworld, there isn't much to say."
What else could anybody say? There will always be something suspicious and abnormal.
"Then, if you can look at it that way, I will give you insight into what he discovered. The reason Mamoru investigated these people isn't a simple case of drugs like the initial report stated. It's connected to a missing person case."
"Are you talking about what happened three years ago when people started to go missing randomly? It wasn't just one case but several."
"That's right, you know of it?"
"I was also told to investigate it. Several members of Kyofu disappeared."
"That case was closed because the missing people appeared again."
Her eyes widened at that. "But none of the members returned…"
"The ones who came back were normal civilians... The important officials and members of the underworld vanished completely. When we interrogated the civilians, they couldn't tell us much either. The police did not get anything valuable."
She raised her eyebrows as she listened to Shin. How come he knows about the unreleased information from the police? It seems like she does not know anything about this person. He is an idol and teacher. But a crazy idea appeared in her head; maybe Shin is somehow connected with the police force too?
Her thoughts broke off when she hears a clattering sound. She glanced at the source to find a gorgeous maple leaf bracelet on he wrist. "This?"
"It will keep you safe." Shin trailed off when he saw her confused expression. "There is a tracking device there."
"I see." It looked like a normal bracelet, so she is sure that nobody would suspect anything. "Are you trying to dodge my question?" Sumire mumbled.
"Well, you will learn about it sooner or later. Besides, I came along intending to tell you everything. Mamoru gave me instructions anyway, just in case anything were to happen. Not only would I take over, but I would ask for your help."
Sumire sighed when she heard those words. "Normally, the guy is supposed to protect his girl from harmful situations."
"Mamoru was very reluctant. But I suggested it would be better to have you on board. You're smarter than me, and you learn faster than most people do."
She blinked when she heard his praise. Did Shin just admit that she was smarter than him?