Hyouka:Volume 3 Chapter 6

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6 - And So It Ends[edit]

066 - ♠19

"So, how many copies do we have remaining in the end?"

I quietly turned the cardboard boxes upside down.

Only five copies of Hyouka fell from the boxes. The "Juumoji" effect was amazing, in more than one way.

"W, wow, to think we would come this far......!"

Satoshi said filled with emotions.

"But...... it's such a pity, to have just this little remaining,"

Chitanda was surprisingly aggressive.

As for Ibara,

"...... And I thought it was going to be hopeless, and was thinking about how I could make up for it......"

Her voice trembled as she said.

We managed to go past the break-even point. If we consider the copies Irisu sold for us, we actually made a profit. Sadly school rules dictate that all club profits are to be returned to the school. Guess I'm aggressive myself, sort of.

"But, did we really sell over a hundred copies in the afternoon?"

No matter how emotional she was, Ibara was still pretty sharp. As there was no longer any reason to hide this, I cleared my throat and said,

"Actually, I've arranged for Hyouka to be put on sale on the Kamiyama High School website. I've handed 30 copies to the General Committee,"

"Wha? When?!"

Chitanda's eyes became round.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to surprise you. I just didn't have the chance to tell you,"

The first half was true, the second half was a lie.

"But Oreki, what if the site couldn't sell all of them?"

"That wouldn't be a problem at all!"

My accomplice Satoshi cheerfully patted Ibara on the shoulder,

"As the copies have all been purchased by the General Committee, they're the General Committee's problem now. The Classics Club has nothing to do with them,"

"Oreki-san, when did you make such a deal...... I didn't realize at all,"

Well, I made sure you didn't realize when I made the deal, after all.

Before I realized it was Tanabe, I had already planned on selling the Hyouka copies to "Juumoji" to begin with. Depending on who it was, I could make some adjustments to my plan depending on the level of risk. To be precise, I resorted to blackmail, which was something I could never tell Chitanda.

So "Juumoji" turned out to be Tanabe, which makes things easier since he's with the General Committee. Instead of an extortion, I was able to make a decent transaction with him, which was lucky for me and for the Classics Club. Come to think of it, it was strange for me to take on the role of the blackmailer.

That's right, thinking back, these three days have been fortunate. Not just the existence of the web store, but we were also lucky that "Juumoji's" final target, a club that began with [KO] was us as well. Receiving a copy of Ashes at Dusk from my sis of all people can also be attributed to luck, as without Ashes at Dusk, it was impossible to solve the "Juumoji" Incident. According to Satoshi, those detective wannabes sure went around for nothing, with the conditions they have, it was not possible for them to solve this. The ones who came closest were me, and probably Satoshi if I had to pick a second person. The fact that I managed to find Tanabe was really down to luck. And I have no idea what that Straw Millionaire thingy was for. Could anyone care to enlighten me on that?

Still, wouldn't this be a perfect application of my favourite proverb "Good things come to those who wait"? If you sit quietly, fortune will come upon you. While it may apply to me, I'm not sure about Satoshi or Chitanda, though.

Anyway, what should we do with the remaining five copies?

"There's no point leaving them behind. Let's each buy one copy,"

We quickly accepted Satoshi's suggestion, and each placed 200 yen into the candy box.

Chitanda held her copy to her chest, Satoshi put his in his drawstring bag, while Ibara caressed the cover with her hand.

That leaves just one copy.

...... I placed another 200 yen.

"Huh, Houtarou?"

"I'll place this one in my sis's room,"

It's thanks for the manga she gave me. I'm not sure if she knows it's me thanking her. If she has no use for it, I can always use it as a pot stand.

I picked up the last copy.

We looked at the empty cardboard box.

As though flushed with emotions, Chitanda said first,

"We've, sold out,"

"Sold out......"

"S, sold out......"

Sold out huh?

The dark brown coloured mountain of despair that we saw on the first day has now been completely flattened.

However Chitanda continued, as though spellbound,

"All that's left is the 'Juumoji' Incident. I can now put all my attention and curiosity into it,"

"Ah, about that,"

Satoshi smiled and said,

"I think Houtarou has figured something out,"

"Eh, really?"

Suddenly, Chitanda's gaze changed as she approached me. Hey, you don't have to come so close, do you know how many times you've startled me like that?

Even if I don't panic, we still had a lot of time. As though escaping Chitanda's large eyes staring at me in close distance, I leaned back towards the back of my chair and said,

"Well, about that, how about we have a party as well to go along with it? To celebrate us selling out?"

"W, what in the world has happened? Oreki actually making a suggestion?!"

What's that supposed to mean? Talking as though you've seen the world.

At once, Satoshi sprang up,

"I agree! Even the Disciplinary Committee are having a party! Only a party can dispel the sorrows of this fleeting life, after all! And it's Sunday tomorrow, so why not?"

Ibara, whose has been looking gloomy for some reason for the past three days, finally lightened up,

"Yeah, you're right. I've not been able to appear in the Classics Club these past few days. I'd like to hear what's been happening...... Something interesting has happened, right?"

Looking aside, Chitanda made a calm smile. By making such an elegant smile, she really looks graceful like that. This is so unfair.

"Then how about we have it at my place? While it's not really lively, you're more than welcome to come,"

Chitanda's place, huh? It's a bit far, but, it's wide and quiet. So I'm thankful for that.

"Then it's decided. Shall we go,"

"Yeah, school's closing soon,"

"Oh! How about I make some sushi?"

"Chi, Chi-chan, you're really modest......"

As if on cue, the chime rang as we all stood up.

It was a chime signalling students to go home, a chime to declare the three day Cultural Festival has come to its end. It also felt like a chime to celebrate a satisfactory conclusion to things.

I'm sure we all felt the same way.


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