For the record, you should probably never believe in old wives' tales about your health. Enjoy.


Goto takes in another drag of the familiar nicotine, letting the smoke fill his lungs deeply before expelling it back into the chilly night air. The moon is full and bright, but for late March it's still much colder than it should be, and a second kind of chill creeps down his spine thinking that Masayoshi had spent the past several days in this cold, unable to find shelter beyond a few scraps of cardboard and a coat that was optimistically thin at the time he had chosen to put it on. The heat, more than the creeping glow, of the cigarette burning close at his fingers alerts him that it's time to stub this one out too. He tosses it carelessly to the ground and grinds it with the toe of his shoe.

He's still wearing the ridiculous cop costume Mari bought him way back when, a time when—he assures himself—things were just as fraught as they are now. Goto is used to worrying about heroes. Tonight is not so different to those other times, and back then it all worked out. King Torture wasn't the final villain, because those don't exist, and he even managed to stop the rocket. He still needs to yell at Masayoshi for that. Who cares what's happened in between, there's no statute of limitations on complaining about grievances like that. When Masayoshi returns, he really is going to get it.

Masayoshi had to go, of course. There's no way he couldn't. And if the guy who had led the country through the terror of King Torture, led them against the invasion of 65, 536 From Beyond monsters including, mysteriously, a cephalopod version of Masayoshi himself, survived half a week on the run from the law and still had the energy to take on the Prime Minister of Japan in a poll-fuelled powersuit, couldn't drive an alien crazy enough with his talk of blind justice to drop him back here with prejudice, then Goto is willing to admit he knows nothing about Masayoshi.

Nothing like what his favourite curry is, the exact number of figures he has in that embarrassingly thorough collection, how many (or should he say how few) drinks it takes to turn Masayoshi redder than his costume, that he probably respects Ishihara more than he fears her if not by a whole lot, and how his grandpa kind of fucked things up for him as a child even though Masayoshi doesn't realize it.

Masayoshi will drive that alien (and really, aliens?) up the wall.

He shifts a little on the ledge of the fountain. If Masayoshi were here, he'd probably helpfully attempt to lecture him on how sitting on cold concrete can cause a bladder infection. Pretty rich from the guy who makes a moral creed out of refusing to use umbrellas when it rains. Goto can feel the phone in his pocket as he shuffles about. He doesn't feel like checking it.

He pulls out another cigarette, flicking his lighter a few times before it properly ignites. If Masayoshi were here, he'd probably sit down next to Goto anyway because he's an idiot. So Goto is waiting for it. He'll keep littering the ground with ash and cigarette stubs as long as he needs to, because if he waits here it'll be fine. The moon is still high. Masayoshi will be back before dawn. He just needs to stay here. If he does, he won't have to wonder when tomorrow will come, because tomorrow can't come without him if he doesn't move from this spot.

He breathes out another cloud of smoke and stares up at the moon. His leg is cramping up, so he just stretches it out slightly, rotating his ankle to try and let the blood flow better. He doesn't bother standing up. He's not going to leave, after all, until tomorrow arrives with Masayoshi dragging his sorry ass back to the planet he (dubiously) belongs on. Goto will lecture him when he's good and ready. It's no good to just relay messages; Harakiri Sunshine was right about that. Goto's going to deliver the message in person himself, just like Masayoshi is going to tell him, in person, all about his impending bladder infection and how he fought an alien (really, aliens?) and how there are a million more things in this universe coming to get them and how he is going to fight them all off one by one because he's an ally of justice (which is, granted, more convincing now than when he was a freak in an alleyway watching the remnants of his costume burn away courtesy of Goto's recklessly thrown cigarette).

The heat is licking his fingers again. Goto lets the cigarette fall to the ground. Masayoshi had become a better hero over time, to be sure. Still not what he needs.