==[Loose Ends]==

==[Chisame Hasegawa]==

I waived my hand in the air and several translucent screens appeared, suspended in mid-air. One of the screens held an accurate map of the area we were currently traversing as well as the current condition of the airship.

We were going at cruising speed. Considering the fact that this was a rather long expedition, we needed to save energy. That and it helps with stealth. Even with advanced cloaking field tech on board, it didn't change the fact that we disturbed the environment whenever we pass through.

Knowing how things generally go with these kinds of things, or whenever we actually bother going out with a purpose, I wouldn't be surprised if a legendary dragon would somehow be revived and interfere with us… that or one of the many enemies we have will make a move.

It actually happened once before, when we were trying to look for a good place to set up a base.

Unfortunately for that dragon, the entirety of the combat force of Ala Alba was present at the time.

The poor thing didn't even last five seconds.

Hopefully nothing comes up this time around. We'll be able to handle mostly any threat but doing so wastes time and resources.

Well my expectations aren't high anyway, we had the absolute worse luck with these kinds of things.

"Nothing yet…?"

Looking to the bottom of one of the screen, I checked the time.

It was already 2:00 AM. Scrolling through the floating screen, I skimmed through the history of messages and calls that passed through our communication network.

Roughly half of them were random conversations about shopping, movies, and the like. The girls of Ala-Alba had a horrid tendency of using highly sophisticated and heavily encrypted communication lines like they were some kind of web chat.

I can only laugh at the poor sap that spends countless hours and resources breaking through our encryption, only to find a conversation on what cosmetic brand was recommended for a particular climate.

I'm actually surprised it hasn't happened yet. Gotta hand it to Chachamaru and Hakase, they did one heck of a job with it.

"Aside from the usual stuff in here, nothing out of the ordinary. No contacts or messages from the captain though."

I waved my hand to dismiss all the floating panels and leaned back on the chair. The air-conditioning was on full blast so the command pit was rather cold.

Thankfully, I did have a personal body heater with me.

"Hnn….."

Unfortunately, my sudden movement seemed to have disturbed said body heater.

It was a red haired boy currently snuggled up to me. Someone that a lot of people would probably recognized easily.

Negi Springfield. Boy genius. Bonafide monster class mage. Son of the Thousand Master, disciple of the dark evangel, trained by the Immortal Gladiator Jack 'the idiot cheat machine who can't die unless the enemy also cheats' Rakan. He was the savior of worlds and serial killer of maiden's hearts.

He had more titles than that but it would make his introduction too tedious and those particular titles were already an accurate summary of the kid's general image to the public.

Calling him 'kid' wasn't really appropriate at this point, since he was technically 17 years old already… however I've gotten into the habit of calling him that.

There's also the tiny and insignificant detail that he was currently assuming his ten-year old form.

It's all rather complicated so best not to ask unless absolutely necessary. I'm not really a fan of overt exposition.

"Keep sleeping sensei, we've still got a lot of time before we reach the intended destination."

"Chisame… chan… hnnn…"

I adjusted my position slightly and pulled Negi-sensei closer. Thankfully, that was enough to convince Mr. Workaholic to keep his genius head in the land of fluffy dreams.

Getting the kid to take a rest from the insanity that is his life was already a chore and a half. Heck, it was easier beating unstoppable evil mages and saving the world in comparison, so I'd rather not have him wake up for any reason.

Hence, unless the world was ending in the next second or someone's about to die, I'll make sure the kid keeps sleeping.

"Haaah… this is a pain…"

I let out a sigh and took the time to study the features of my former English teacher. Looking at his face, that of his ten year old self, you'd never imagine that fact that he could take on kaijuus by himself and win without breaking a sweat.

If only he could stay like a normal ten year old boy genius instead of supreme magical hero extraordinaire…

"Geez… you work way too hard sensei…"

I allowed my hand to mess with the already tangled mess of red hair of the person I've somehow grown so fond of in the past few years. His hair was rather soft, a testament to how fuzzy the other girls can get when it comes to taking care of the kid.

People would probably wonder how close the kid and I have become to be comfortable with this kind of arrangement if they were to see it. It wasn't really always like this between us but it just somehow turned out this way.

Thankfully I never let anyone, save for ones I would categorize as close friends, ever really see us like this. Even then, at this point, I wouldn't really care what other people think or say.

It's more of a matter of making sure I don't somehow get marked as some kind of love rival that needs to be beaten. Half the girls in Ala Alba were too damn energetic for my tastes and I didn't want to have to deal with anymore teasing than necessary.

So yes, it definitely wasn't the fact that I'd be embarrassed by the thing, just that I like having peace and quiet whenever I can.

Peace and quiet were scarce nowadays.

"Hnnn…"

Sometimes I wondered what I'd be doing right now if I never got involved with the more fantastical side of the world.

My name's Chisame Hasegawa. 22 years old. Ministra of one Negi Springfield. Specialized in information, electronics, hacking, and anything computer related. Current head of the intelligence and support division of the group known as [Ala Alba].

Repeating that line still sounds weird inside my head, despite the fact that's been my go to intro line to anyone I meet whenever I'm representing the group.

Way back in ancient times, the time before everyone's favorite Negi Springfield had stumbled into the classroom of Mahora Academy, I really never imagined myself becoming the kind of person that would need a bodyguard… much less participating in a group whose primary mission statement was do crazy things to help make the world a better place.

In hindsight, the fact that the classroom was filled with oddities like ghosts, vampires, robots, and middle school girls with figures that have absolutely no business belonging to a middle school girl, I was probably just deluding myself into thinking I'd live a normal life.

Of course, I probably really would have ended up in some kind of average office desk job if I hadn't somehow committed several morally questionable decisions at the time.

One of them was falling in love with a ten year old kid who happened to be my teacher at the time.

Okay, well, given that said ten year old kid was a bonafide genius who was probably more mature and praiseworthy than anyone within that campus, adults included… but realizing that I was no better than the class president still sends chills and shivers down my spine.

I really hate hindsight. I'd kick it's ass if I could.

"Hmmm…. Really, this certainly is quite the sight isn't it?"

Hearing a voice coming from behind, I let out a small sigh and slowly turned the seat, careful not to make any sudden movements that would wake up sensei.

"Exactly why the hell do all of you insist on being undetected when entering a room and speaking up?"

"Instinct. Do it enough times and it becomes ingrained in your body."

Turning around, I saw the smiling—or better yet, smirking- face of the lovely dark-skinned marksman of Ala Alba, Mana Tatsumiya.

Tall, dark, and very much mysterious. Seems cold as ice to strangers but shows a gentle smile to friends. The kind of character that you just know was hiding more than just a few secrets. Manga and video games would tell you that kind of character wasn't someone you want on the opposite side of the battlefield.

The mercenary for hire was one of the more versatile and dangerous members of the group. The girl had more experience in the field that any single one of them and would enlighten us on the more delicate issues of involving ourselves with the more unsavory parts of the world every now and then.

Fortunately, the marksman was not just a comrade but also someone she'd consider a 'close friend'.

The fact that people that I place in that category happen to include a highly advanced and humane gynoid, a god knows how old former imperial princess, a legitimate modern day Japanese princess, a samurai with white wings, a shameless paparazzi with a literal ghost for a partner, a fiendish and silent acrobat, the god be damned dark evangel, and muscle bound nigh invincible perverted nuclear warhead loaded with every imaginable cheat in the world… well that says a lot about how crazy my life had become.

Being friends with that last idiot still gives me migraines from time to time.

I really need to make better life decisions… or more normal friends. Probably the latter. It was already way too late for me to back out from this insanity.

Little wonder why I have such a hard time talking to my folks about them whenever they ask.

"You're usually one of the more conservative ones when it comes to expressing affection for that sensei of ours. I can only imagine how the livelier bunch in our group would react to seeing this."

Probably with shock, jealousy, indignation, then a formally written request that they get the same rights and treatment.

Well most of them would at least. A good amount of the members of Ala Alba, particularly the original founding members of the group, were already close enough to sensei that hugs holding hands were the norm. Thankfully, those included in the category wouldn't do anything dangerous to sensei…

The others however… well if Makie for example, any of the athletic or cheerleader girls, or one of the more mischievous members of the group were to be in the same position I was in now, then I doubt Sensei would have a comfortable sleep considering the very real danger he'd be in.

Now if it was Eva on the other hand... well that was a bit different. Letting him snuggle up to Eva would pretty much ensure getting his blood sucked.

Of course, the absolute worst case scenario was letting the kid snuggle up to the likes of Ayaka. Things are already complicated as it is, I don't want to have to call any authorities for the sexual assault on a technical minor.

I did think of the girl as a friend after all, no matter how annoying it can get whenever she's around sensei so I'd rather avoid that if possible.

Ahh crap… it won't be long until sensei turns 18 years old. Asuna, Konoka, Setsuna, Chachamaru and I have been able to successfully ward of any 'assault' on the kid for the time being but god knows what would happen when he becomes 'legal' under the eyes of the law.

We've already covered every romcom and ecchi cliché imaginable, I really don't want to deal with any hentai genre tropes yet.

Haaah… I'm gonna have to discuss this in a meeting with Asuna. The kid's 18th birthday party will be an absolute hell.

My mind, heart, soul, and body wasn't prepared to handle the ensuing shitstorm.

I'm already getting a migraine just thinking about it.

"Keep quiet about it. You know damn well the mess that would make."

"Ahaha, will do. We can't be stressing our Sensei here anymore than necessary…"

The marksman approached quietly, leaning over to gently caress the cheeks of their sleeping teacher. Her face changing from mischievous to serious upon seeing the condition of our teacher.

"… He must've been exhausted for him to sleep like this."

"Yeah… the kid's being put through hell. His schedule and workload can literally kill a human being, not to mention the insane amount of pressure he has to shoulder from all the helpless adults that seem to think he can just pull miracles out of his wand."

Even saying that much was an understatement. Chachamaru had been pulling all the stops to help him with managing his work and even then it was too much.

The fact that the kid literally collapsed onto me when he was given the opportunity to rest spoke volumes of how bad it was.

Sensei wasn't exactly human anymore. On top of being strong, he was the type with unparalleled mental fortitude. If the workload was enough that he was showing visible signs of exhaustion…

Needless to say, we had to trample on many commitments so we could pull off this little vacation for him.

"Helpless adults you say? Do we have more requests of that manner?"

"Tch… they just don't freaking stop. Just because we're willing to go the distance doesn't mean they can just sit back, relax, and wait like kings for us to do things for them…"

Those punks. They keep talking big about being responsible adults and then they rely on the kid to save the day. I get that he make the impossible possible but that doesn't excuse them from at least trying to do something before placing all their burdens on the kid.

His childhood was already non-existent. He didn't need his teenage years taken away from him too.

I swear to god, if we get another request to do some idiotic work that could be accomplished without sensei's help then I'm gonna shooting them down with [Al-Iskandariya].

Consequences be damned.

"So exactly how did you convince Sensei to go along with this?"

Probably sensing my agitation from my ranting, Mana decided to change the subject.

I've got a few more walls of text to say on that matter but I'll let it slide. I don't want to be waking the kid up from my ranting.

"We didn't."

Doing so was pointless. The kid wasn't the type to abandon or even half-ass his work for any reason. The only real way we were going to convince him was to somehow pass this off as some kind of important mission.

"Chachamaru had most of his appointments cancelled. Asuna and Konoka attended the more important ones. Everyone else just collectively forced the kid to accompany me in [intelligence gathering]."

"I see… I'm guessing my presence here was to make this all more believable?"

"That's part of it but it's mostly to cover our bases. You know how things usually go with us… besides, on the off chance that we do find something, it's like that we'll be needing someone combat capable. Well it's unlikely tha—"

{Chiu-sama, incoming message!}

Ah damn it, I just tempted fate didn't I?

I felt a spark of electricity and saw one of my ever so faithful servants.

The sparks gathered around and swirled in the air, and with another jolt, a cute little mouse appeared. It had a simple design that would probably appeal to the masses, enough that I'd say it can easily become a Nintendo mascot.

"What is it…?"

I had this sinking feeling, like the entirety of my body was telling me to brace myself for a sudden impact.

I wasn't combat capable and didn't have some kind of extra sensory perception that gave me insight on the future.

This was something I've somehow developed from years and years of spending time with Ala Alba and the dangers the group has to face.

Sometimes, I really hate how manga can be so god be damned realistic.

{Emergency transmission shall now be played!}

Konya, the name of this particular mouse, spun around and lifted her tail. It emitted some kind of beam that turned to a screen.

A video started playing, one that was so filled with static it was almost impossible to discern what was displayed.

[Yo Chisame-chan.]

"….!?"

The screen cleared for a moment and I saw the oversized dark skinned meatloaf surrounded with countless swords that was no doubt created from his artifact.

It was Jack Rakan.

"This is…"

Mana stood beside me, carefully observing the video. For a moment, I had to wonder why she was even shocked in the first place but when the static cleared again, I understood what she saw.

[Heh, well anyway, remember that small lead we found? Well turns out that it miiiight just be more relevant than we thought.]

He was surrounded by divine warriors. Those giant fighting robot machine things that felt like they would fit in an evangelion movie.

Despite being surrounded, the boisterous idiot didn't have a hint of worry in his voice.

Knowing just how stupidly broken the idiot was, I didn't even worry either.

He might have a hard time with that much divine warriors yeah, but it wasn't something that would even come close to killing him.

[Woah there…! *BOOOM* Ah, these things are getting annoying. How the hell are there so many of them anyway? Well doesn't matter, Chisame-chan, I'll send some stuff on your way.]

How that was possible was beyond me. He was in the heat of battle with not a single piece of equipment for communication or transport in sight…

[Hmmm…. Considering the time you're supposed to leave the port, the general area, the wind resistance… and taking into account other factors…]

The idiot took an idiotically large container and taped it into one of his building sized swords… with duct tape… that he somehow pulled from out of nowhere in large quantities… all the while punching the crap out of the nearest diving warrior.

I masterfully ignored the unnecessary feats of impossibility.

I was getting rather good at doing that as of late.

Oh... Wait. Waiiiiit, don't tell me this idiot is…!

[Okay! One package express delivery…. Comiiing uuuuuuup!]

Taking a dramatic pose, the fool put all his strength and threw the sword at a seemingly random direction.

Shit. This is a dangerous development! Knowing how this shit usually ends up, that sword will probably be sent to our exact position!

"Konya, search for any high speed flying objects in the vicinity immediately!"

Sending out orders frantically, I went for the steering wheel of the ship and sent it out of auto-pilot. Sensei was definitely gonna be woken but I didn't really want to have to deal with the annoyance of having our ship cleaved in freaking half!

{Ah Chiu-tama… a flying sword has been detected… calculating its trajectory, it seems it will hit our stern in approximately 6 seconds! Ah….}

"THAT GOD BE DAMNED IDIOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!"

==[Loose Ends]==

==[Mana Tatsumiya]==

"I'll kill him… I swear to god that I'll kill that fucking idiot!"

The ship was able to dodge at the very last second, the sword harmlessly passing through and hitting a nearby mountain, leading to large explosion of energy.

Chisame was half in hysterics and half in murderous rage.

Seeing the how things were, Mana Tatsumiya immediately set off the ship, both to avoid the downright hysterical ranting of one Chisame Hasegawa and have plausible deniability in the event that the girl would ever come through with her plots to kill the Immortal gladiator.

It was an unlikely occurrence, not because Chisame Hasegawa was incapable of finding a way to achieve such a thing, she'd wager that she's one of the few that could actually manage to pull it off, but because she was never really serious.

Better safe than sorry.

The other reason was that she wanted to make sure that whatever package they were sent had survived the method of delivery.

"Hmmm…?"

Arriving at the location, the building sized sword that was used to deliver the package disappeared, allowing the container to fall the ground in a loud thud.

She took out her guns and proceeded to approach the container slowly.

*CHIK*

Raising her guns in alert while taking a stance, she carefully observed as the container opened itself.

She waited a few seconds before finally decided to approach.

"… well now, looks like things just a got a significantly more complicated."

She took out a communicator and immediately called the ship.

{Captain! Chiu-tama is currently busy plotting Jack Rakan's death and we have taken the liberty of receiving your message.}

"Get your master back to normal. Tell her the package we just received is of extreme importance."

{Aye Aye, Captain!}

Closing the communicator, she let out a sigh, knowing full well that this was going to lead to another complicated situation.

She proceeded to reach inside the contained and carefully took out the package inside.

It was a small girl, probably not more than ten years old.

She had a long blonde hair and beautiful white skin. She wore clothes that were no doubt made out of very expensive materials.

"Arika Anarchia Entheofushia…"

She spoke the name of the little girl.

There was no objective proof. It may have just been an extreme coincidence that the little girl happened to bear an almost identical appearance to the Queen of Calamity and the mother of Negi Springfield…

However she had long ago known that those kind of coincidences were never coincidences.

Chisame was going to freak out again.

==[Loose Ends - Chapter End]==

A/N: Hey there... err, I'm definitely supposed to be updated my main stories instead of writing a new one... ahhhh but UQ Holder got to me and well...

Anyway, Negi, adult Chisame and Mana, Jack the GAR Rakan, and a loli Arika. What could this possibly lead to?

Well honestly... I'm not quite sure myself... ahahaha

Leave a review if you've got the time and energy. Thank you for reading this piece.