"MAKOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" Gamagoori's voice boomed over the courtyard like it was attached to speakers the size of Honnouji itself. It blew most students away either in fright or simply off their feet.
As they dispersed, Mako stood in the middle of the school campus, waving as Gamagoori stomped his way over to her. The ground crumbled beneath his feet as he towered over her, reaching into the sky as the sun shined behind his head like a halo. "Hi, Gamagoori!" She said with a grin and a wave.
A wall of one-star students seemed to pop up behind Gamagoori as he approached. Ira got down on one knee, kneeling over Mako. "ARE YOU AWARE THAT TODAY IS A HOLIDAY, MANKANSHOKU?"
Mako blinked at him. "...No, I wasn't." She says. "Oh! Is it your birthday? Oh, OH NO I FORGOT TO GET YOU A PRESENT I mean I didn't forget at all what are you talk-!"
He grit his teeth in slight annoyance. "Firstly, birthdays are not holidays. SECONDLY-"
"Oh, you must mean mystery croquette day! I love that day! Even though that day is everyday!"
He drove his fist into the ground next to her, prompting a cloud of dust to get kicked up. "EVERY STUDENT IS EQUIPPED WITH A HANDBOOK THAT CONTAINS A CALENDAR. ALL STUDENTS ARE REQUIRED TO KNOW ALL THE HOLIDAYS. ESPECIALLY TODAY!"
"Ehh," Mako pouted. "I use that to prop up my desk!"
It was a good thing Ira was a masochist. "STUDENTS! WHAT IS TODAY?"
The students behind him lined up perfectly as they belted it out. "VAL. EN. TIIIIIIIIIIIIIINES!"
He leaned over, his shadow looming over Mako as she started to shake. "AND FOR TODAY, I HAVE DECIDED TO GIVE YOU THIS!" He turned a very slight shade of red, but his expression didn't change as he gave her a comparatively tiny box of chocolates, held only by his index finger and his thumb.
To Mako, it's about as big as her chest. "...A heart-shaped box?" She sais...before it slowly dawned on her. "...EEEEEEEEEEH!?"
"MAKOOOOOOOO!" He even rattled Mako this time. Gamagoori seemed to gulp briefly before sucking in all the oxygen in the immediate vicinity. "WOULD YOU L-LIKE TO GO ON A… DAAAAAAAATE?"
Mako looks at him. Then at the box. Then at him again. Then at the box. Then at himthebox. "...Maybe?"
Gamagoori almost fell over. "ERM." He turned to one of his subordinates who shrugged uselessly. Gamagoori seemed to shrink a few feet as he started sweating buckets. But Mako just stood under him with those big innocent eyes blinking up at him. "HRM." He straightened up to his full height, blush hidden by clouds. "Think about it thoroughly then."
"NOW GO BACK TO CLASS OR I'M BANISHING YOUR WHOLE FAMILY!"
"And that's what happened!" Mako said.
"Well, do you like him?" Ryuko asked back, before she stuffed a piece of rice in her mouth.
"As more than a friend."
Mako puffed her cheeks and kicked her legs out. "Maybe? I don't know!" Mako started drawing in the sand. "On one hand, I like him! On the other hand, these chocolates are delicious! On the other hand," Mako displayed a third hand. "It's Valentines Day!"
Ryuko sighed. This conversation was going nowhere fast, but that was what typically happened with Mako. "Well, maybe you should give it a shot?" she suggested, stabbing at her rice. "Even though he'd probably crush you with his ridiculous-"
"I know!" Mako stood up, interrupting her friend. "I'll go ask the Elite Four!"
"Eh?" Mako skipped off, humming happily to herself, leaving a bewildered Ryuko behind. "How did she come to that conclusion?" Ryuko gave up on trying to understand the other girl's thought process.
"Ryuko-" She looked down at Senketsu. "Since today is Valentines...shouldn't you be asking Mak-"
"She's already made up her mind." Ryuko cut him off. "No need for that extra drama crap."
"...You're slumping a little and your brain says otherwise. You aren't that happy."
Ryuko slumped a little more. "...Okay, fine, I'm jealous of Gamagoori." She sighed. "But at least Mako'll be happy." She smiled at that. "That's good enough for me."
"So I ran off!" Mako said cheerfully.
Sanegayama slapped a sandbag off of its hinges with one of his bamboo swords, before he quickly put up another one. "Sounds like you left him a bit high and dry!"
"After I said 'maybe' and he told me to go back to class."
"Oh." Sanegeyama rolled his shoulders and whipped his sword around, prompting a breeze around him. "Gamagoori is a real man. Strong! Resolute!" Sanegeyama punctuated his points with stiff swings of his sword. "He's a good man, worthy of any he chooses!" He whirled around to face Mako, sword poised over his shoulder. "But if you ever break his heart, Mankanshoku, I'll have yours!" He proudly proclaimed, brandishing his sword at the smaller girl.
Mako looked absolutely scandalized. "Don't take my heart! I only want to give my heart to one!"
Sanegayama blinked. "...I meant that I would kill you. And take the heart out of your body."
"NOOOO!" Mako shook her head. "I can't give it to anyone else!"
"...Mankanshoku, I'm gay. There's no reason for me to want to take your heart in that way. I meant it in a violent way."
"And after that, he hit me on the head with his bokken and told me to talk to you instead!" Mako said. "So...waddyawannasay?"
Inumuta stared at her, before he just adjusted his glasses. "...It's dependent on you."
"...That's what Ryuko said!" Mako said.
"Though I can certainly say that, based on my various observations, that if you were to reject him, his mental capacities and emotional state, sturdy as they are, would not take it particularly well, and he may very well collapse."
"...Is that a bad thing?"
Inumuta's collar opened up to let him sigh. "Yes, it might very well b-"
"What Dog here is trying to say is that Toad won't like being rejected." Jakazure said with a smirk on her face, before Inumuta put a hand into her face.
"Precisely. Though in the end, it's ultimately your decision-"
"Tell him yes!" Jakazure said. "Tell him yes! He keeps whining about it, too-"
"Eh?!" Mako blushed.
"Only Lady Satsuki can call me that!" NonJAKAZURE interrupted him before she pulled his face to hers. "That's her privilege!"
Inumata just nodded as beads of sweat dripped off of of his forehead. "I apologize for the confusion." He said...before he frowned. "...Now can you let go of my collar? I was attempting to give her some advice."
"Oh yeah. That whole 'it's her decision' thing." Jakazure waved a dismissive hand before she threw him to the ground face-first. "It really is, by the way. If you like him? That's great! If you don't, then it sucks for him but it's better than gettin' into a fake one."
"A fake relationship?" Inumuta asked.
"Those suck." She said.
"...I thought you only had Lady Satsuki as a crush. Since forever ago." He adjusted his glasses again.
"I thought she was, to quote myself, 'out of my league'." She sighed. "I was dumb and I asked one of my friends out. She said yes but then it turned out she just said that because she felt bad about rejecting me. She was straight as an arrow."
Mako jumped in front of her. "But if she was straight as an arrow, then how could she possibly have gotten into a relationship with anyone? That kind of straightness sounds pretty painful!"
Both of the Elite Four members stared at her for several seconds. "...As in she liked penises." Inumuta said, flatly.
Mako put a hand to her chin. "...Well, they are stiff. I mean, if you're straight as an arrow, then perhaps you could be a giant penis?"
Both of them stared at her as a blush of embarrassment reached across Inumuta's face, and one of indignance covered all of Jakuzure's.
"Oh! You could use it as a club-!"
"OKAY, YOU KNOW WHAT?!" Jakazure screamed. "HOW ABOUT YOU ASK SOMEONE ELSE ABOUT THIS."
"And so I came to ask you, Satsuchan!"
Satsuki let out a wistful sigh as she looked upon Honnouji city. One could see where the school once stood, where there was now a smoking crater and a destroyed tower where she once called home. She looked at Mako with a wry smile. "I'll just repeat what everyone said. It's your decision."
"But I don't know what my decision should be at all!"
Satsuki paused. "...Did you ask my sister about this yet?"
"Yeah!" She said. "She said to go ahead!"
Satsuki nodded with a smile. "That sounds like Ryuko. Letting someone else have a chance, even though she got there first."
"It's nothing." Satsuki said. "Well, maybe I can help you." She turned her chair towards Mako as she sipped her tea. "How do you feel about Gamagoori?"
"He's a good friend! And he's big and strong! And kind of scary!"
"That sounds like Gamagoori." Satsuki idly shook her cup around. "And would there be anything else that you would like to add?"
"Oh!" She nodded. "And he's also really nice to me! And he helps out my family and he always looks out for us!"
"Keep going." Satsuki leaned back in her chair.
"And...and when I heard him telling me about that, I felt this kinda...thingy! Like a buncha butterflies in my chest!"
"Hm. That sounds curious." Satsuki smiled. "That reminds me of what happened after I finally put Ragyo in the grave. Nonon told me how she felt." She sighed. "...Kind of like you, I had to dwell on it, but eventually, I said yes."
Mako nodded. "Oooooooooooooooooooooh…" She tilted her head. "And you two are happy, right?"
"Quite." Satsuki said. "Nonon is impulsive. A bit cruel towards her friends and will often say things that are much harsher than she intended. But overall, I am proud of her, as my subordinate, as a member of my council, and as my girlfriend." She stood up from her chair and walked towards Mako, before she put her hand on the other girl's head. "So...these butterflies. Would you mind telling me more about how you feel towards him?"
"Oh!" She nodded. "Well, he makes me smile a lot, when he's not being big and scary he's being really nice and kind! He helped my brother and his friends out and kept them from stealing more money!"
"Did he stop your father from selling more blood?"
"Eh?! You knew?!"
"It isn't a secret." Satsuki never lost her smile for a second. "But is there any more to these butterflies?"
"Other than…" Mako froze. "...Whenever he really does smile, I feel warm. When he's not being scary and when he's genuinely happy...I feel really warm."
"I don't think there's much more to say, then." Satsuki turned away. "Tell him 'yes'. I think it'd be best for the both of you."
"And that's what she said!" Mako said to Gamagoori on the courtyard. He was now only two feet taller than she was, as opposed to the towering figure that handed her the chocolates.
"SO, MANKANSHOKU-" He blushed a little. "H-HAVE YOu come to a d-decision?"
She nods rapidly.
She nods again.
"...What was your answer?"
She keeps nodding.
She. Keeps. Nodding.
"Yes?!" She freezes.
"What is your answer?"
"I told you!" She said. "I was nodding! That means yes!"
Gamagoori resisted the urge to fall over earlier. However, this time, he fell over to the ground face-first, and his skull left an imprint on the ground. He quickly recovered before he dusted himself off and cleared his throat. "Thank you for accepting, M-Mako." He blushed again.
Mako grinned. "You're welcome, Gamagoori!" She kissed him on the cheek.
His entire face turned a bright shade of red. "...You can call me 'Ira'."
"Okay, Ira!" She said. "So...where're we gonna date?"
"I haven't thought about that."
"Then we'll find a place!" She said before she pulled him off campus by a single finger. "Let's go!"