Taniguchi and Kunikida...

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Taniguchi and Kunikida...

Postby McCritical » Sat Sep 30, 2006 11:04 pm

Koizumi's play during the school festival is part of the inspiration for this bit of fiction. The other part is a feeling of disappointment that Kyon and Haruhi never did get a chance to explore Asakura's apartment after her mysterious disappearance.

I'm also assuming that while Taniguchi is lazy, and frequently comes up with some idiotic ideas, he's not stupid....at least not "Homer Simpson" stupid.


One...Two...Three!

"Scissors!" Taniguchi exclaimed. I showed him my outstretched hand. Sadly I didn't need to reveal my choice. We both knew the outcome.

"How many times have we played this afternoon?" Taniguchi asked me.

"Somewhere around a hundred times."

"Really? I stopped counting after twelve." Taniguchi snapped my slowly bruising wrist. "Surprise me sometime, Kunikida. Pick something other than paper."

I smiled. I assured Taniguchi that I was simply waiting for him to pick something other than scissors, but regardless of how badly I wanted to pick 'rock' or 'scissors', something inside me wouldn't let me deviate from the pattern. "Luck isn't with me today." I replied.

"Luck has nothing to do this. The game is based on free-will. What you choose decides the outcome."

"I still have no idea what you plan to do. Therefore it's a game of chance."

"For the past one hundred games, you've always picked paper! How does this, in any way, reflect something happening by chance." He stroked his chin. This was never a good sign, as it usually preceded poor Taniguchi making a serious social blunder, or wandering into some horrible misadventure. "Look there's got to be some reason you keep letting me win here. One: You're incapable of bending your fingers..."

I shook my fist at him to prove his first theory wasn't the case.

"Hmmm. Two: You have Asperger Syndrome."

Great! So now I have a choice of being afflicted with arthritis or a mild neurobiological disorder.

"Or three: I have Asperger Syndrome, and you're simply a masochist."

Sadly, given Taniguchi's general lack of social sense and the fact that I had agreed to accompany him to Ryouko Asakura's apartment, this was probably the most plausible theory. The trek to Asakura's apartment began, like most of Taniguchi's ill-fated projects, with a stroke to his chin.

"Kunikida, I'll make a deal with you. If you win this time, I'll accept the story that Asakura moved to Canada, and we'll just hang out at the cafe for the rest of the evening."

I agreed. At least I had a shot at convincing Tanaguchi to give up on this craziness and do something less likely to result in embarrassment or injury.

One...

Taniguchi was convinced, without a doubt, that his theory about Asakura was correct, and that the girl was crying her eyes out in her apartment. The only sensible conclusion is that since Taniguchi will not give up easily, he will anticipate me choosing something other than paper this round. If he expects me to deviate from the pattern, he will have to deviate from it as well.

Two...

So if Taniguchi expects me to choose something other than paper, there are only two logical choices for him to make: rock or paper. Left with two choices, the probability of winning jumps from 33% to 50%, but so does the probability of losing. My best bet, then, would be to make a choice evenly divided between a win or a tie. Logically, there seems to be only one option.

Taniguchi is right, this game is based on something more than chance.


Three!

Of course the other possible outcome is Taniguchi anticipating me making the same choice I have made throughout the past hundred matches we played today. As fate dictates, this is exactly the outcome playing out at this moment.

"Paper again?" Taniguchi shook his head sadly and smacked me on the wrist. "Stop looking so worried," he assured me. "I have a plan."

---

Taniguchi's plan revolved around some questionable events that only Taniguchi himself was capable of verifying. Apparently Asakura had approached him for a favor.

"Would it be bad form for a girl to invite a male classmate to meet up with her after school?" Asakura asked.

Taniguchi was stunned. He pressed for clarification. "Are you asking if it's too forward for a girl to ask a guy to hang out?"

"I suppose that's what I'm asking. I'm a bit worried about coming off too aggressively. The last thing I would want to do is to scare this particular boy off."

At this point, he regained his composure. "Well you know the old saying; It's better to regret the things you have done, than the things you haven't."

"I hadn't heard that...but thank you."

"No problem. So, was there something you wanted to ask me?"

Asakura's eyes brightened. "Yes. Could you deliver this letter to Kyon before school ends?"

His heart sunk. Our friend Kyon had his own problems, but it was obvious that Taniguchi was a bit envious of Kyon's situation. A female classmate, named Haruhi (who Taniguchi had failed to make any sort of lasting connection with while he attended East Junior High School) had suddenly displayed an active interest in the otherwise unremarkable Kyon. Then there was the beautiful upperclassman with whom Kyon shared an undeniable chemistry. Sadly, Taniguchi had announced his intentions of pursuing Asakura at the beginning of the school year, but now she was showing an interest in Kyon as well. My heart went out to him, which is why I agreed to his crazy mission.

Taniguchi dejectedly accepted Asakura's task. Actually, what Taniguchi did was to open the letter, read the contents, and then stuff it in Kyon's locker. It would be characteristically unusual for the laid-back Taniguchi to give the contents of the letter any thought at all (other than something to tease Kyon about), but under the circumstances, his curiosity made sense in a creepy, stalkerish sort of way. He then went on to do something more uncharacteristic, he waited around after school to see if Kyon and Asakura would actually meet up. Asakura showed up, but apparently, Kyon had decided to play it cool.

Taniguchi wandered the halls for awhile, so he had no idea when Kyon actually made it to the classroom Asakura designated in her letter. I'm guessing that the pain of not knowing something is far worse than the pain of actually knowing, and Taniguchi was past his limit of waiting in limbo. He devised a plan.

The plan went something like this: walk into the room unannounced, make up an excuse for barging in, assess the situation, then leave and sulk the rest of the evening. What Taniguchi had not planned on was discovering Asakura was no longer in the room and Kyon and a member of the Literature Club engaging themselves in some unsanctioned after-school activities of their own on the classroom floor.

"Uh...I forgot some stuff....Sorry about that!" he stammered before bolting the room.

When he recounted the story to me, I could only reply with "that must have been embarrassing for you."

"Not really," he said slyly. "Yuki said I was 'interesting'."

I was surprised Tanguchi knew her name. Apparently the Literature Club girl made it into his "A" list. Unsurprisingly, even a word of ambiguous praise from the normally non-verbal Yuki was enough to shift Taniguchi's mood to the better during his walk home from school.

The next day Asakura was absent from school, and Taniguchi confronted Kyon with what he had witnessed in the classroom. Kyon denied Taniguchi's allegations, and claimed that the Literature club student had suffered some form of vertigo. Truth be told, Taniguchi's version of events is far more entertaining.

All of this, of course, leads us to our current mission.

"She's heartbroken. There's no other explanation for it. I never saw Kyon enter the classroom, so he must have arrived before I saw Asakura go inside. She must have left when I was pacing the halls."

"Maybe..." I said, "...but that still doesn't explain how the Literature club girl ended up in the room."

"I haven't figured that out either. Maybe he phoned her, or maybe she was already in the room with him. Maybe I wasn't the first person to walk in on those two."

"So Asakura discovers that Kyon has another girlfriend and goes home."

"Exactly. Asakura didn't go to Canada, she's still recovering from the sight of seeing those two together. She's probably sitting at home embarrassed and depressed."

I had to ask. "So why are we going to her apartment?"

"Rebound relationship," he replied confidently.

"If that's your plan, why do you need me!" I asked. "If you expect to hook up with Asakura, why would you invite along a third wheel?"

"Emotional support."

"And if by slim chance you actually do hook up with her this evening, what do you expect me to do?"

"I already have that covered." Taniguchi reached into his coat pocket. "I brought a Gameboy."
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Postby SubordinateFive » Sun Oct 01, 2006 2:16 pm

A fic involving side characters? One doesn't see that every day. I give you points, first of all for originality.

The style of your fic is—just a little—similar to the original Haruhi novels, and Japanese novels in general.

What's a Japanese novel like? I'm basing this opinion on the few Japanese novels I've read so far.
  • Haruhi (vols. 1-3 in English)
  • Marimite (vol. 1 in English, vol. 1 in Japanese soon)
  • Soseki's Kokoro (in English)
  • Soseki's Ten Nights of Dreams (in Japanese)
  • ...a few others

Moving along, fics that focus on side characters tend to merely repeat plot points from a different perspective. Thank you for not doing this.

Your depictions of Kunikida and Taniguchi (more points awarded, for character development) vaguely resemble Kyon and Haruhi, respectively. At least that's the impression I got.

That said, if [your depiction of] Taniguchi somewhat resembles Haruhi, it's interesting that Taniguchi failed to make any sort of lasting connection with her while he attended East Junior High School.

It's also interesting that Yuki moved up on Taniguchi's A-list—wasn't she a A- before? (Source: vol. 1, ch. 7.) Not that I'm complaining, mind you. But I'd like to see what makes the normally non-verbal Yuki so interesting in Taniguchi's book, since he seems more attracted to the cute, social types like Asakura. Perhaps Taniguchi is mystified by Yuki in some way, or met her back in junior high school......? I'd like to see your Taniguchi/Yuki connection developed further.

Taniguchi/Asakura? It could happen. But. You'd have to really develop both characters in order to show us what he sees in her, or vice versa. It's doable. Good luck!

I like the humour at the end.

McCritical wrote:"And if by slim chance you actually do hook up with her this evening, what do you expect me to do?"

"I already have that covered." Taniguchi reached into his coat pocket. "I brought a Gameboy."


This fic is interesting. I'd like to see more from you.
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Postby bicube » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:26 pm

Wow, this is a really nice fanfic. It's really interesting that you're using the side characters in this one, but what I find cooler is that their personalities in this sorta matches what I had envisioned them to be as well. Keep up the good work, and hoping to see more from you!
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Postby the_naming_game » Wed Oct 04, 2006 6:20 am

Nice to see some activity in the fanfiction forum!

Really amusing in places, especially when you tied into the main plot from Taniguchi's viewpoint.
  • Taniguchi finding comfort in being called "interesting" by Yuki. (A+)
  • Asakura getting Taniguchi's hopes up and then crushing him. (A++ !)
  • Taniguchi going for a rebound relationship with a crushed Asakura. (Priceless!)
  • Gameboy. (Icing on the cake. Preferably with Yuki inside, but this isn't my fic...)
The Kyon-Haruhi/Kunikida-Taniguchi parallel is pretty clear. (As mentioned by SubordinateFive) For Taniguchi, this is awesome. Love him as a perverted, delusional, ineffectual, lesser Haruhi. Kunikida seems to be more out of character as a dumber, less cool Kyon. On the other hand, in his normal character, as a bland follower, it wouldn't be nearly as fun.

Almost forgot to mention -- reminds me of a "Rozencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" take on Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu. Were you influenced by that?

SubordinateFive:
Taniguchi/Asakura? Come on, Taniguchi going for his A+++ choice is a no-brainer! Though I would most certainly question his taste, there's no doubt in my mind he'd jump at a chance with her.

And yes, nothing wrong with a little more Yuki in the story...

Can you say a little bit on Japanese novels in general? I haven't seen enough to be able to see the kinds of patterns you're talking about
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Postby McCritical » Wed Oct 04, 2006 9:22 pm

Thanks for the input. The feed-back has really triggered a lot of ideas.

SubordinateFive wrote:It's also interesting that Yuki moved up on Taniguchi's A-list—wasn't she a A- before? (Source: vol. 1, ch. 7.) Not that I'm complaining, mind you. But I'd like to see what makes the normally non-verbal Yuki so interesting in Taniguchi's book.


Taniguchi seems like the sort of guy who would have a pretty extensive "A list." Personally, I suspect that list includes more than 70% of the incoming female student population. Taniguchi refers to her as Nagato Yuki in chapter 7 after telling Kyon and Kunikida "I only remember the names of the A girls" in the first chapter.

SubordinateFive wrote:I'd like to see your Taniguchi/Yuki connection developed further...

...Taniguchi/Asakura? It could happen.


Hmmm...what about Taniguchi/Asahina?

Bicube wrote:what I find cooler is that their personalities in this sorta matches what I had envisioned them to be as well.


Taniguchi strikes me as a decent guy with a lot of false bravado. Kunikida's personality seems to be less defined, and Naming_Game's description seems to be a pretty good assessment of the Kunikida we've seen in the series this far.

the_naming_game wrote:Kunikida seems to be more out of character as a dumber, less cool Kyon.


I wanted to portray Kunikida as a character whose free will is partiallly handicapped. He's stuck defending choices that have already been determined for him. I didn't want to portray him as dumb, but I also figure he's a lot more likely to go along with Taniguchi's schemes when Kyon isn't in the picture.

the_naming_game wrote:Almost forgot to mention -- reminds me of a "Rozencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" take on Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu. Were you influenced by that?


Yes. The opening dialog is pretty much a parody of the coin-toss scene in R&G. In R&G, the laws of physics and probability are suspended; but in T&K, Kunikida is simply incapable of picking anything other than paper. Taniguchi picks up on this problem, but Kunikida continues to rationalize his decisions.

Taniguchi reading Asakura's letter before delivering it to Kyon was a bit of a nod to R&G as well.
Last edited by McCritical on Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby McCritical » Wed Oct 04, 2006 9:34 pm

We stood outside Asakura's apartment building. He searched the list of residents for the intercom button to Asakura's apartment. The surname label for Room 505 appeared to have been peeled off recently. Taniguchi noticed the missing label as well, and buzzed the apartment. There was no answer. It appeared that Taniguchi's fantasy of being a rebound guy was about to be thwarted by the locked gate barring our entrance.

"Now what?" I asked.

With a defeated look in his eyes, Taniguchi looked at his phone and reluctantly pressed a series of buttons. "Hello Grandma," he said in the phone. "I'm outside your apartment building...could you please buzz me in?" A few seconds later the gate buzzed and Taniguchi pushed it open. "I hope you don't have any plans for dinner" he warned me, holding the gate as I walked through.

We took the elevator to Asakura's floor and knocked on her apartment door. No answer.

"She's not here." I stated. "In fact, there's nothing about this apartment that suggests she ever lived here.

"Or she's not answering." Tanguchi countered. He jiggled the doorknob. "Hey! It's unlocked." he exclaimed, opened the door, and walked inside.

"Are you crazy!" I hissed, following him inside. The apartment appeared to be completely empty. "Nobody's here. Nothing's here. We can go to your grandmother's place now."

Taniguchi seemed spooked. "Close that door and lock it." He whispered. "Something doesn't feel right."

I figured if we were going to wander around someone else's empty apartment, it would be best if we did it privately. I locked the door. "She's not here," I whispered back. "What do you hope to find here."

Ten seconds later, the doorknob rattled. Our heads snapped towards the door, and it rattled again. We heard some guy and a girl debating on the other sound of the door. The voices sounded a little agitated, but not as agitated as someone who had returned to their apartment to themselves locked out.

A few seconds later, they left. "Let's get out of here!" I hissed at Taniguchi.

"They won't be back," he replied.

"Maybe they went to get another key."

"No, they don't live here," Taniguchi assured me. "If they had left the door unlocked, then they would have at least knocked to see if whoever locked the door was still in the apartment."

Taniguchi's logic was dead on. I was impressed.

"My experience has taught me many things." Taniguchi said proudly. Apparently the experience of being locked out of his apartment was a frequent event. From what I had witnessed, so was the experience of him forgetting the keys to his shoe locker at school.

"I don't think Asakura is going to be back either." I said, looking at the vacant apartment.

"Let me check the bedroom."

I shook my head as Taniguchi slid open the door to the bedroom. Taniguchi stopped cold. He had obviously discovered something. "Kunikida," he said remaining completely still, "I think you need to see this."

I looked in the room, and saw two schoolboys dressed in North High uniforms lying motionlessly on a large futon in the middle of the floor.

"What are they?" Taniguchi asked me.

"They're dead." I replied before screaming and running out of the apartment.

Taniguchi ran screaming behind me.
Last edited by McCritical on Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby the_naming_game » Thu Oct 05, 2006 7:12 am

"They're dead." I replied before screaming and running out of the apartment.

Taniguchi ran screaming behind me.

Nice comedic timing :D

Ten seconds later, the Itsuki rattled.

Looks like the word filtering accidentally kicked in here. What was the original?

Also, you have to type "feed-back" or else it gets word-filtered to "poke" around here...
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Postby bicube » Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:33 pm

It's doorknob, minus the door part.
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Postby McCritical » Fri Oct 06, 2006 11:05 pm

We were a nice safe distance from the apartment before I felt we could breathe again. Should we call the police? Should we keep quiet? Should we hide somewhere until things were safe?

Taniguchi stood next to me, breathing heavily. "I think I know what we need to do." he said. I hoped he had the answer, because I certainly didn't. For once, I seriously expected Taniguchi to have a solution. I was grasping at straws, but I honestly wanted to believe he had figured a way out of this mess.

"We need cute nicknames." Taniguchi continued between breaths.

"What!" I gasped.

"Think about it. Kyon's become pretty popular with the ladies since he entered high school. So, what's the difference between Kyon and us? It has to be the nickname, right?"

"What!" I gasped again. Either Taniguchi's brain was deprived of oxygen, or the sight of two dead bodies had created some sort of dissociative episode.

"So all we have to do is think up some cute nicknames. Maybe something a little feminine. We should expect a bit of teasing from the guys, but I think it will go over pretty well with the women."

"What are you talking about!" I screamed. "We just saw two dead people who look a lot like us laying in Asakura's apartment!"

"They don't look anything like us." Taniguchi replied. "Well maybe the guy on the right looked a little like you."

Well, to be honest, I hadn't stuck around Asakura's apartment to really get a good look, but the guy on the left looked an awful lot like Taniguchi.

"Let's get something to eat first," he suggested. "We'll probably spend a few hours explaining what we saw to the police, so we might as well grab a bite before we call. It will give you a chance to calm down, and it gives us a chance to come up with a decent story to tell the police. Those bodies aren't going anwhere."

Cute nicknames aside, the advice was pretty solid.


We decided to cut through the park on our way back to Asakura's apartment. As we walked towards the station, a woman approached us. She looked familiar, but I couldn't recall actually ever meeting her before. However, she seemed to recognize Taniguchi, and she began smiling as she approached. Unfortunately, there was nothing warm about that smile, and I wondered what kind of trouble Taniguchi had gotten himself into this time.

"Hello boys," She greeted us. Her tone was a dead giveaway that Taniguchi had managed to screw up somehow.

"Hey!" Taniguchi nudged me. "It's Asahina's sister! We talked earlier this morning."

"It's nice to see you remember something about our meeting earlier." she responded with the same cool smile.

"Oh hey! We haven't really introduced ourselves. I'm Ichigo," he said. Taniguchi then winked and pointed to me. "He's Miruku."

Of all the cute nicknames he could have invented, he used those two.

"So, your mothers named you after a dessert?" She dropped the smile. "How sweet. So Ichigo, where's the letter?"

Now I was puzzled. How did Asahina's sister know about Asakura's letter to Kyon?

He pulled a folded pink, and well wrinkled envelope out of his coat pocket. Taniguchi's handwriting was all over the envelope. He had apparently used it to take notes about various female classmates and to scribble down Asakura's apartment number. On the front of the envelope was Asahina Mikuru's name, buried in the middle of Taniguchi's hieroglyphics, along with several smiley faces. The older Asahina appeared far less jovial. Perhaps it was a good thing that Taniguchi hadn't delivered the note to Kyon. Had Kyon saw Taniguchi's writing, he would have dismissed the letter as a joke. He handed the letter to Asahina.

"Well, at least you can see I didn't read it" he assured her.

"Of course I can see you didn't read it." She retorted. "Had you read it, you would have realized that it was important he receive it before lunch today."

"But your sister sees Kyon every day."

"This isn't from her...it's from me!" At that point, Asahina blew up. "Do you realize I wasted an hour in the arts building for him to show up."

Taniguchi apologized "Uh...sorry about that..."

"You have no idea how much of a mess you've created," she stammered. "I'm usually pretty good natured. No, actually I'm very good natured! I've been poked, prodded, and humiliated in ways you could not possibly imagine..."

"Ah...You're a hostess." Taniguchi replied.

Asahina's sister looked like she was going to cry. The tears welling up in her eyes did not appear to be from joy or sadness, but from the incredible restraint required of her to not choke the life out of Taniguchi there on the spot.

"Look..." Asahina's sister sighed. "I put that name on there for a reason...and no, I can't tell you what that reason is, but it was important that Kyon read this letter this morning. Two of your classmates are going to disappear sometime tonight, and it was crucial that I warn him about it." She stared at the ground with a defeated look. "That's all I can tell you."

"Two North High students?" I asked.

"Yes" she replied.

Asahina's sister looked up, and Tanguchi and I looked at each other.

"I think I know where to find them," I said.
Last edited by McCritical on Tue Oct 10, 2006 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby McCritical » Tue Oct 10, 2006 6:56 pm

the_naming_game wrote:And yes, nothing wrong with a little more Yuki in the story...


Maybe just a little Yuki this time around.

Did you move your Yuki story to the Nagato Fan Club forum? It ends at the food booth and I wondered if it was continued somewhere else.

As we walked back to the apartment building, Asahina unfolded the envelope Taniguchi had failed to deliver, and pointed to Asakura's address. "Is this where the missing students are?"

"They're not exactly missing," I replied. "But yes, that's the place."

"I know this place," she replied, and pulled out her phone. She began tapping a message on the keypad. a second later she got a reply. "Were the students a boy and a girl?"

"No, they were two guys."

Asahina fumbled with the keypad again, and almost instantaneously she got a reply. "What did they look like."

"They looked a lot like us." I replied.

"You're crazy!" exclaimed Taniguchi.

"No, that's okay. That should be an adequate description." The elder Asahina replied as she tapped the information into her phone.

"Your friend replies pretty fast," Taniguchi said. "Is she using a computer?"

"I don't think she has a computer." Asahina replied. "In fact, I'm not sure if she even has a phone."

When we got to the apartment Asahina's sister sent another message from her phone and the gate buzzed open. We took the elevator to the fifth floor and opened Asakura's apartment. While Asahina and I pulled off our shoes, Taniguchi walked directly towards the bedroom.

"Hey, where did those guys go?" Taniguchi exclaimed. The two North High students had disappeared.

"They were here two hours ago." I told her.

"Don't worry about it," Asahina assured me. "I believe you. There's something strange going on here. Were the students wearing shoes?"

"I don't remember." Taniguchi replied.

"I do," I said. The possibility that the two kids were dead was the second thing that registered when I saw the bodies. Seeing two guys our age sleeping on a futon in a girl's apartment in a tatami room with their shoes on was the first thing that caught my attention.

"I don't think those two students are dead." she replied. She pointed to the dirt trapped in the mats. "You can see part of the heel marks, and those marks are moving away from the futon. What's strange here, is that there are two sets of heel marks, and neither set of marks is moving towards the futon."

"What does that mean?" I asked.

Asahina received another message on her phone. She looked at it and replied, "It means you're going to be hanging out with me tonight."

While we were trying to think of what we should do next, an old man appeared in the doorway. "Who are you!" he demanded.

"We're here to talk to our student rep," I replied. "We're waiting for her to come back."

The old man looked at Asahina's sister. It was obvious he wasn't going to buy that story. "She moved," he said. "So how did you get into her room?"

"We're renting it from her." Taniguchi said.

"Subleasing is prohibited here." The old man said.

"We're not subleasing it," Taniguchi replied. "We're renting it by the hour."

Two high school kids and an attractive older woman. Taniguchi's lie seemed much more plausible than the truth at this point. I suspect that the old man had already considered we might be renting the apartment by the hour, so he had no problem believing Taniguchi's lie. Unfortunately, Taniguchi's story only made the old guy angrier.

"This is a respectable building!" he shouted. "Who are you? Tell me your names!"

"Ichigo Miruku," replied Asahina's sister.

"Kyon," I replied.

"Kunikida," replied Taniguchi.

Asahina forcefully drove her heel into the toes of the old man's shoe. He had a startled, and somewhat pained, look on his face. At that point, Asahina pushed the old man backwards and he fell on the floor. She grabbed her shoes from the entrance and ran off. As I went to grab my shoes, Taniguchi bolted past me.

"Sorry," I apologized to the old man before running off.

The three of us gathered in the elevator. Asahina's sister pushed the button for the seventh floor.

"Why are we going up?" I asked.

"There's something I need to pick up first." she replied.


We got off the elevator and Asahina led us to room 708. On the metal door of the apartment was an envelope held in place by a round ceramic magnet. Asahina released the envelope from the door and flipped the magnet over. The magnet was black on one side and white on the other. Asahina smiled and placed the magnet in her pocket.

"What is it?" Taniguchi asked. I was dying to know as well.

"Tea." she said. "...and an Othello piece."


Note: "In fact I'm not sure if she even has a phone" is based on the assumption that Yuki is capable of communicating through electrical devices without the aid of a cell phone or a computer. (Being a data entity, this scenario could be quite possible.) In the first novel, Yuki is able to communicate with Kyon in the sealed reality through the computer, but she seems to be clueless to how a computer actually works in "The Day of Sagittarius."
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Postby the_naming_game » Wed Oct 11, 2006 5:56 am

The new improved Asahina Mikuru -- definitely improved. I empathised with her Taniguchi-strangling thoughts.

Kunikida -- after making a bad impression in the first installment, he's really starting to shine. Or maybe it's the semi-Kyonism working its magic on me?

Taniguchi -- he keeps getting more and more hopeless. Even so, "cute nicknames" and Mikuru's reaction, definitely like!

Name swapping, aka "Ichigo Miruku" ("Miruku" = "Milk", right?), "Kyon", "Kunikida", and that whole scene -- nice slapstick.

Tea and Othello piece -- this part is kind of touching. I'm a sucker for nostalgia under duress.

Yuki presence -- tantalizingly sparse, but I have a feeling she'll get more later, since the action seems to be heating up...

Bicube wrote:It's doorknob, minus the door part.

Didn't realize before that k-n-o-b is a bad word in Britain. (makes sense now, with Oni being the wordfilter-master around here.) Learning copious new things daily...

McCritical wrote:Did you move your Yuki story to the Nagato Fan Club forum? It ends at the food booth and I wondered if it was continued somewhere else.

I actually never continued that particular branch. (planning to eventually though... I forsee many more fun Yuki-Kyon moments in the future.)

I wanted to work on the alternate branch first. After awhile it stopped being a branch. I started rewriting it as an alternate universe story starting from around v1c3 and diverging from there. (Kyon is a little bit different in this story, but it's not out of left field. The signs of it are in his initial speech in the first novel.) I managed to get two installments of it written, but then I trailed off. Not that I didn't know what to write after, but I got busy and never restarted after that...

Long story short, I'm a pretty inconsistent writer...

(The Yuki Club could always use new members, incidentally...)
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Postby McCritical » Fri Oct 13, 2006 11:48 pm

the_naming_game wrote:("Miruku" = "Milk", right?)


Right. I wanted to use the name to distinguish the two Asahinas from Kunikida's point of view.

the_naming_game wrote:Yuki presence -- tantalizingly sparse, but I have a feeling she'll get more later, since the action seems to be heating up...


She doesn't appear this time around, but next time I guarantee at least one awkward moment between her and Kunikida.

the_naming_game wrote:I actually never continued that particular branch. (planning to eventually though... I forsee many more fun Yuki-Kyon moments in the future.)


I hope so. If Yuki fans didn't have a reason to hate Asakura before,
Spoiler! :
Disappearance, chapter 2 is a good reason to start hating her now. That evening could have turned out a lot different if it weren't for Asakura's surprise visit.


the_naming_game wrote:Long story short, I'm a pretty inconsistent writer...


Same here. I've been dragging my feet on an original story for the past year.

Asahina's sister had us follow her back to the park. Taniguchi decided he needed to pick up a few things at the convenience store outside the station, so Asahina and I waited on a park bench for him to return. I spent a few minutes filling her in on how we had stumbled across the two students. I also apologized for Taniguchi's incompetence. "He's not a bad guy," I explained. "But he has a pretty short attention span, unless it involves women."

"That's pretty obvious."

"I understand that you have your reasons for not telling us your name," I said. "But it'd be nice to be able to call you something other than Asahina's sister."

"I know, but..."

"So," I continued. "My name is Kunikida, and the name Miruku seems to fit you a lot better than it does me."

She smiled. "Well, it's nice to meet you Kunikada. You can call me Miruku-chan."

"The guy in the store, his name is Taniguchi."

"He's really hung up on that Asakura girl, isn't he?"

"He'll get over it."

"That's probably for the best," she said. "People don't just move to Canada at a moment's notice, without something being terribly wrong."

When Taniguchi came back, he brought food for Miruku and himself. However, a second bag seemed to catch Miruku's attention. "So what else did you buy?" she asked.

"Oh...just a magazine." he replied.

Tanaguchi clutched the mystery bag closer to his chest.

"I see." Miruku said. She stood up and walked behind Taniguchi. "What magazine?"

"It's just a magazine, it's nothing important."

Miruku began tickling Tanaguchi. "Grab the bag," she yelled to me. Taniguchi tried to protest, but she kept tickling him. I wrestled the bag away from him. Taniguchi broke free, and tried to rush me. I tossed the bag over his head and Miruku caught it.

"It's research." Taniguchi explained as Miruku looked inside the bag.

Miruku began laughing. She looked at Taniguchi's reddening face and laughed harder.

"What is it?" I asked.

Taniguchi dropped his head in shame. "It's the latest issue of Nakayoshi." Miruku saw me laughing and began giggling again.

"Congratulations!" Miruku laughed. "You're the only person I know who buys Nakayoshi for research. Most little girls buy it for the cute stories." She flipped through the pages, and pulled an envelope out of the magazine. "Can I have this?" she asked Taniguchi.

Taniguchi nodded, and Miruku put the magazine in the bag and handed it back to him. "This will be our little secret," she said.

Miruku stopped laughing and looked at her watch. "It's getting late and we have work to do. I want you to grab my hand." She instructed Taniguchi. She pointed at me. "You too." We grabbed her hands. "Close your eyes and follow me."

We walked a few steps. "Wow!" Taniguchi exclaimed. I opened my eyes. He stood there wide eyed and slack jawed. Apparently I had missed whatever Taniguchi just witnessed.

Miruku grabbed the bag from Taniguchi's grasp and whacked him over the head with it. "You were supposed to keep your eyes closed until I told you to open them!"

"Wow!" Taniguchi exclaimed again.

---

We followed Miruku to North High School. "What are we doing here?" I asked.

"Your friend is going to deliver this letter," she replied. I wasn't following her logic, but figured it best not to question her. She saw the look of confusion on my face and reassured me. "Don't worry, I bought us some extra time." Miruku pulled a set of keys out of her bag and let us into the arts building. We followed her into the Literature Club's room.

Miruku flipped on the lights. Taniguchi's eyes widened as he surveyed the room and noticed a stack of games, a pair of bunny girl costumes and a maid's outfit. "What do the Harudan actually do in this room?" he said.

"The Harudan?" she asked.

"Your sister is involved with a really weird club," I explained. "No one really has any idea what they do, and a lot of the other students have created their own nicknames for the club."

"Like the 'Suicide or Suzumiya Brigade'," Taniguchi said.

"A few students started calling it Haruhinodan, and eventually shortened it to Harudan," I continued. "Then someone told us what Harudan meant in English. And because of the bunny girl incident, the name Harudan seemed appropriate. So it stuck."

"But it's not anything we'd actually say to Suzumiya's face," Taniguchi said, "or any of the other members."

Mikuru's face began turning red. "I wouldn't worry too much about your sister," I assured her. "Kyon's a pretty level-headed guy...but..."

"But...what?" she asked.

"He's always had a thing for weird girls."

We entered the room and Tanaguchi sat at the desk while Mikuru and I sat at the table. She pulled the letter out of the envelope that Taniguchi defaced and placed it in the envelope she found in Nakayoshi. She went to grab a pen from the desk and discovered what was holding Taniguchi's interest on the computer.

"Where did you find those!" she demanded.

Hearing her voice behind him, Taniguchi jumped out his seat. "They were in the 'mikuru' folder," he said.

"How did you find them?"

"I was bored and the file was password protected," he explained. "So I just used Kyon's password and it opened the folder."

"You know Kyon's password?" she asked.

"Everybody knows Kyon's password," I said. "He always uses his sister's name."

Miruku's face began turning red. "Put it away and leave everything as you found it." She found a pen and wrote something on the front of the envelope before handing it to Taniguchi. "I need you to put this in Kyon's shoe locker."

Taniguchi left the room and Miruku sat down at the table again and buried her face in her hands.

"Is everything okay?" I asked.

"It will be. I can feel it."

"Good," I replied.

Miruku pulled out the package she took from the apartment building. "I'm going to make some tea," she said. "It should be ready by the time your friend comes back."


the_naming_game wrote:(The Yuki Club could always use new members, incidentally...)

I'm interested.
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Postby TheGiftedMonkey » Fri Dec 29, 2006 11:51 am

I'm not even sure if Critical visits the forums anymore, its been a few months, but I would love to see this story wrap up in your words. :D I can imagine everything else that happens but I still wanna read it. 8)
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Postby McCritical » Sun Dec 31, 2006 7:13 pm

TheGiftedMonkey wrote:I'm not even sure if Critical visits the forums anymore, its been a few months, but I would love to see this story wrap up in your words. :D I can imagine everything else that happens but I still wanna read it. 8)


Sorry about that...things started getting hectic around midterms and never seemed to stop.

When Taniguchi finally made it back to the room, Miruku looked relieved. She placed the cups around the table and sat down. "I want to thank you boys for helping out tonight."

Taniguchi drank his tea and nudged me under the table. He was trying to hand me his gameboy. He managed to read more into Asahina's gratitude than the simple expression of thanks for fixing what he had managed to screw up in the first place. I drank my tea and ignored him.

"Now if you'll excuse me for a few minutes, I need to make a phone call." Mikuru pulled out her phone and left the room.

"I'll put in a good word for you." Taniguchi told me.

"What are you talking about?" I asked

"With Mikuru," he said bobbing his head sleepily. "You... me... sisters... this is going to be a great year." Something wasn't quite right at the moment, it was a typical Taniguchi plan but without the typical Taniguchi energy to back it up.

I nodded my head, too tired to argue. "Sounds like a great plan." I said. "I think I'm going to go home. I've had enough fun for today."

Taniguchi rested his head on the table. I waited for some sort of response or farewell, but I could see his eyes fluttering shut as he was attempting to formulate some reply.

I sat dazed and tired for a few moments while Taniguchi appeared to drift in and out of consciousness. "Do you think she's coming back?" I asked.

Taniguchi's eyes opened a bit. He stood unsteadily and told me "I guess you'll have to take care of Asahina, because I need to go home and get some sleep." Then he collapsed. I felt a weak adrenaline surge as I tried to catch him, but I barely had enough strength to stand up on my own. As it turned out, all I could do was cushion the nasty blow of his head hitting the floor. My muscles felt like rubber, and my knees simply folded under Taniguchi's extra weight.

The muscles on Taniguchi's neck tightened slightly, but it was clear he could not lift his head. A huge grin came over his face and he mumbled the words "Star shaped mole," before completely passing out.

At that moment, the door opened and a girl entered. Even without her glasses, I recognized her easily.

"I've arrived too soon." Nagato said matter-of-factly. I had no idea how to respond, so I simply sat on the floor, slack jawed, with Taniguchi's head in my lap. "I will come back later," she informed me, and then closed the door.

I wondered how Nagato would relay this particular scenario back to Kyon. I expected it would all end in a semester's worth of teasing. In any case, it didn't seem to matter much at the moment. I closed my eyes and felt the world slip out from under me.

Somewhere in the darkness I heard the words "they're dead." I heard what sounded like two elementary girls screaming. I heard a door slam. I opened my eyes.

I woke up to the sight of two pairs of shoes resting on a futon in the middle of a tatami room. Those shoes were attached to two pairs of pants that made up the bottom half of the North High School uniform. Taniguchi and I had somehow managed to end up back in Asakura's apartment, and on the other side of the bedroom door. I figured I should probably wake up Taniguchi.

Taniguchi woke up far more disoriented than I was, and while I couldn't figure out exactly how we had ended up here, I also realized that it would be wise to steer clear of the other places we had been the evening before. "Hey?" I asked. "Didn't we have an invitation to eat dinner at your grandmother's place?"

Taniguchi nodded and stood up. "Something strange happened here, didn't it?"

"Pretty much."

"And it will give me a headache if I think about it too much?"

Again I agreed.

"Well, then, let's eat." he said.

"Oh, and one more thing," Taniguchi added. "Let's never speak of this again."

I thought about Nagato's face as she saw us on the floor of the literature room. "Agreed." I replied as we walked out of Asakura's apartment and towards the elevator.
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Postby TheGiftedMonkey » Sun Dec 31, 2006 7:26 pm

^^ Glad you got back to finish the tale. Hope to hear some more fan-fics from you bro. :D
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